Journal of
Microbiology and Antimicrobials

  • Abbreviation: J. Microbiol. Antimicrob.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2308
  • DOI: 10.5897/JMA
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 166

Full Length Research Paper

Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex drug resistance pattern and identification of species causing tuberculosis (TB) in the South and East regions of Cameroon

Jean-Paul Assam-Assam1,2, Veronique Beng Penlap2, Fidelis Cho-Ngwa1, Jean-Claude Tedom2, Irene Ane-Anyangwe1 and Vincent P. K. Titanji1*
  1Biotechnology Unit, Faculty of Science, University of Buea, P. O. Box 63, Buea, Cameroon. 2Laboratory of Tuberculosis Research, Biotechnology Centre of Nkolbisson, Faculty of Science, University of Yaoundé I, Yaounde, Cameroon.
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 28 May 2011
  •  Published: 30 July 2011



Despite advances made in the treatment of tuberculosis (TB), resistance to first line drugs remains a major public health problem, particularly in developing countries. The purpose of this study was to identify the bacterial species causing pulmonary tuberculosis (TB) and evaluate resistance to first line drugs in the south and east regions of Cameroon. A total of 372 patients with clinical symptoms of tuberculosis were admitted at the hospital study sites. Of these, 94 (25.3%) were positive on sputum smear microscopy, of whom 52.1% were males and 47.9% females. Growth of Mycobacterium was recorded for the sputa from 84 (89.4%) of subjects. All isolates were Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Ten (11.9%) were resistant to at least one drug. The initial resistance rate was 13.7% for the both regions, while no acquired resistance was found. Multidrug-resistance (MDR) was observed only in the South region where it was detected in 1/63 isolates. No resistance was recorded for ethambutol (EMB) in the two regions. Thus, M. tuberculosis is the major M. tuberculosis complex (MTBC) species causing pulmonary TB in these regions of Cameroon. Following the re-organisation of the National Tuberculosis Control Program (NTBCP), resistance to all first line anti-TB drugs has declined significantly but remain undesirably high.


Key words: Cameroon, drug resistance, Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex.