Comparison of phenotypic and PCR methods for detection of carbapenemases production by Enterobacteriaceae

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Dissemination of carbapenem resistance via Enterobacteriaceae, particularly among Klebsiella pneumoniae and Escherichia coli, is a major public health concern. Rapid methods for determining antimicrobial susceptibility are important to ensure adequate and appropriate use of antimicrobial agents and to limit the spread of these bacteria. In the current study, we compared the rapidity, sensitivity and specificity of traditional methods and molecular-based Xpert Carba-R PCR assay to identify sixty isolates, (26 E. coli and 34 K. pneumoniae). The specificity of MicroScan was 100% while sensitivity to ertapenem (ERT), imipenem (IMI), and meropenem (MER) was 93%, 68.9%, and 55.17%, respectively. For the modified Hodge test, the specificity was 96.77% and sensitivity was 89.65%. Although some results of phenotypic assays matched with the definite PCR identification, some results were misleading. Out of the 29 positive PCR samples, three samples of K. pneumoniae were negative for the MHT and one E. coli sample was MHT positive but negative for the PCR. Nine samples were positive for the PCR but were determined as carbapenem sensitive by MicroScan. While MicroScan and MHT requires several hours and multi-steps to obtain results, Xpert Carba-R PCR assay takes less than an hour. Therefore, we recommend using Gene xpert Carba-R assay for the optimal carbapenemnase detection with reducing material, manpower and cost. Also it is important to know the type of carbapenemase is present.




AlTamimi, M., AlSalamah, A., AlKhulaifi, M., & AlAjlan, H. (2017). Comparison of phenotypic and PCR methods for detection of carbapenemases production by Enterobacteriaceae. Saudi Journal of Biological Sciences, 24(1), 155–161.

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