Nontuberculous mycobacteria (NTM) are a heterogeneous group of widely distributed environmental bacteria . Despite generally low pathogenicity in humans, NTM can cause various illnesses especially in HIV-infected patients or those with immunodeficiencies . In recent years, NTM-related disease incidence has increased significantly  and, despite China's tuberculosis (TB) programme having more than halved TB prevalence over the past 20 years , population-based data indicate that the proportion of NTM among all mycobacterial patient isolates has increased from 11.1% to 22.9% , triggering public health concerns.
Nontuberculous mycobacterial infections in China: regional predominance of M. intracellulare and M. abscessus http://ow.ly/vg3H306YH8c
Support statement: This study was supported by the Ministry of Science and Technology of the People's Republic of China (National Key Project 2013ZX0003-003). Funding information for this article has been deposited with the Open Funder Registry.
Conflict of interest: None declared.
- Received July 16, 2016.
- Accepted November 23, 2016.
- Copyright ©ERS 2017