Oral Biol Res 2019; 43(1): 60-65  https://doi.org/10.21851/obr.43.01.201903.60
Assessment of bacterial contamination of mobile phones of dentists and dental hygienists by Illumina MiSeq
So Yeon Lee1 ,2, Si Young Lee1 ,2*
1Department of Oral Microbiology, College of Dentistry, Gangneung-Wonju National University, Gangneung, Korea
2Research Institute of Oral Science, Gangneung-Wonju National University, Gangneung, Korea
Correspondence to: Si Young Lee, Department of Oral Microbiology, College of Dentistry, and Research Institute of Oral Science, Gangneung-Wonju National University, 7 Jukheon-gil, Gangneung 25457, Korea. Tel: +82-33-640-2455, Fax: +82-33-642-6410, E-mail: siyoung@gwnu.ac.kr
Received: January 25, 2019; Revised: March 13, 2019; Accepted: March 15, 2019; Published online: March 31, 2019.
© Oral Biology Research. All rights reserved.

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In a clinical environment, medical staffs often use their mobile phones with their bare hands, thereby possibly exposing them to bacteria contamination. Cross-contamination could occur, where bacteria may be transferred from the contaminated hands of a healthcare worker to a patient. Some studies have investigated the microbial contamination on mobile phones of healthcare workers. However, in these studies, specific bacteria were identified through general culture methods, and few studies have investigated the contamination on mobile phones of dentists. In this study, Illumina sequencing was used to identify the bacterial diversity present on mobile phones of dentists and dental hygienists. Five dentists and five dental hygienists working in a dental hospital were surveyed. Several bacterial genera were detected on the dentists’ mobile phone, such as Pseudomonas spp. (52.52%), Janthinobacterium spp. (14.21%), Enterococcus spp. (9.66%), Stenotrophomonas spp. (5.68%), Streptococcus spp. (4.29%), and Acinetobacter spp. (3.15%). On the dental hygienists’ mobile phones, Enterococcus spp. (32.02%), Pseudomonas spp. (23.76%), Streptococcus spp. (22.44%), Lactobacillus spp. (8.77%), Janthinobacterium spp. (3.54%), Acinetobacter spp. (1.7%), and Stenotrophomonas spp. (1.22%) were detected. In addition, 38.09% of the genera identified on the dentists’ mobile phones and 25.74% of those on the hygienists’ mobile phones contained pathogenic species. Bacteria associated with oral diseases, such as Streptococcus spp., Actinomyces spp., Porphyromonas spp., and Fusobacterium spp., were also detected in both groups. This study demonstrated the high rates of bacterial contamination on mobile phones used by dentists and dental hygienists and showed the possibility of contamination by infectious pathogens.
Keywords: Bacteria, Contamination, Illumina Miseq, Mobile phone

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