Group B streptococci (GBS) neonatal infection, a prevalent disease in western countries, is considered rare in Korea. GBS neonatal infection is known to be often due to serotype III organisms, but the serotypes in Korea have not been reported. In this study, GBS were frequently isolated from specimens of genitalia, urine and various pus. Among the 186 isolates 14 (7.5%) were from neonates, two with concomitant bacteremia and meningitis and one with pneumonia. Frequently isolated GBS serotypes were Ib (9.2%), Ib/c (26.6%) and III/R (23.9%). Change of frequently isolated serotypes during the study was noted, but JM9 which became increasingly isolated in Japan was not found. It is concluded that less prevalence of severe neonatal GBS infection in Korea is not due to the absence of serotype III, but possibly due to low genital carriage rate of GBS by pregnant women.
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