High isolation rates of multidrug-resistant bacteria from water and carpets of mosques

  • MMM Ali
  • F Alemary
  • A Alrtail
  • MM Rzeg
  • AM Albakush
  • KS Ghenghesh
Keywords: water, carpets, mosques, potentially pathogenic bacteria, multidrug resistance, Libya


Objective: There is little information regarding the isolation of  antimicrobial-resistant potentially pathogenic bacteria from water and carpets of mosques worldwide. The objective of the present investigation is to determine the bacteriological quality of water and carpets of mosques in Elkhomes city in Libya.
Methods: Potentially pathogenic bacteria were isolated from water samples (n44) and dust samples from carpets (n50) of 50 mosques in Elkhomes city, Libya, using standard bacteriological procedures. Susceptibility of isolated bacteria to antimicrobial agents was determined by the  disc-diffusion method.
Results: Of the water samples examined, 12 (27.3%) were positive for Escherichia coli, 10 (22.7%) for Klebsiella spp., and 15 (34.1%) for other enteric bacteria. Of the dust samples of carpets examined, 6 (12%) were positive for E. coli, 33 (66%) for Klebsiella spp., and 30 (60%) for  Staphylococcus spp. Multidrug resistance (MDR, resistance to three or more antimicrobial groups) was found among 48.7% (19/37) and 46.9% (30/64) of the examined enterobacteria from water and carpets, respectively, and among 66.7% (20/30) of Staphylococcus spp. from carpets. In addition, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) was isolated from a carpet of one mosque.
Conclusion: Presence of multidrug-resistant potentially pathogenic bacteria in examined water and carpets indicate that mosques as communal  environments may play a role in the spread of multidrug-resistant bacteria in the community and pose a serious health risk to worshipers.

Keywords: water; carpets; mosques; potentially pathogenic bacteria; multidrug resistance; Libya


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1819-6357
print ISSN: 1993-2820