Objective: Neisseria meningitidis can colonise healthy human nasopharynx and is one of the most important etiologic agent of epidemic meningitis. The purpose of this study is to investigate the carriage rate, serogroup distribution and antibiotic resistance of Neisseria meningitidis in medical faculty students.
Methods: Nasopharyngeal swab cultures were evaluated. Identification is made by convensional and semi-otomatised system. Serogroup analysis was performed with slide agglutination method. Minimum inhibitor concentration results were evaluated by gradient test. Risk factors for carriage were investigated.
Results: Neisseria meningitidis was isolated from 3 out of 475 (0.6%) students. Two of them were serogroup A and one was serogroup C. All strains were susceptible to penicillin and ceftriaxone. Living in a dormitory and sharing the room with three other students and smoking were found as risk factors. None of the students reported upper respiratory tract infection or antibiotic usage. Other potential pathogenic microorganisms colonising nasopharynx were also identified and most detected of them is methicillin susceptible Staphylococcus aureus (n: 87).
Conclusion: Neisseria meningitidis is one of the leading pathogen in our country as it’s in the world. Since serogroups of isolated strains differ from region to region, it’s important that every country should conduct regular surveillance in order to utilize an effective vaccine for prevention and outbreak management against this infection.