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Revista chilena de infectología

Print version ISSN 0716-1018


ULLOA, M. TERESA et al. COMPARISON OF POLYMERASE CHAIN REACTION, LATEX AND DISK DIFFUSION FOR DETECTION OF METHICILLIN-RESISTANT Staphylococcus aureus. Rev. chil. infectol. [online]. 2001, vol.18, n.4, pp.255-260. ISSN 0716-1018.

Rapid, accurate discrimination of methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is essential for appropriate therapeutic management and timely intervention in infection control. The most important mechanism of methicillin resistance in S. aureus is based on the production of PBP2a, which is encoded by the mecA gene. Most laboratories use disk diffusion to detect MRSA. At present, commercially available slide latex agglutination tests for the detection of PBP2a and PCR for the mecA gene allow faster diagnosis. The purpose of this study was to compare an MRSA screen test (Denka Seiken Co., Ltd.) and the disk diffusion techniques with the gold standard PCR for the detection of methicillin resistance. A total of 73 S. aureus isolates were tested, 34/73 were methicillin resistant strains by the three methods. Two isolates were negative for the mecA gene and PBP2a, but showed resistance by the disk diffusion technique, due to a ß-lactamase. All the susceptible isolates (37/73) were negative by PCR and latex tests. Sensitivity value was 100% for slide latex agglutination and disk diffusion tests while specificity was 100% and 94,9%, respectively. The MRSA screen test is a highly sensitive and specific test for detection of methicillin resistance. However, negative strains should be tested by disk diffusion

Keywords : Staphylococcus aureus; Methicillin resistance; Polymerase chain reaction; Latex agglutination techniques; Disk diffusion test; Rapid laboratory diagnosis.

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