Direct identification of bacterial isolates in blood cultures by using a DNA probe

T. E. Davis, D. D. Fuller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

62 Scopus citations


This study involved the rapid, direct identification of Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Escherichia coli, Haemophilus influenzae, Enterococcus sp., and Streptococcus agalactiae from positive blood culture bottles (BACTEC, Johnston Laboratories, Inc.) by using the AccuProbe (Gen-Probe, San Diego, Calif.) culture confirmation test. This method uses a chemiluminescent DNA probe that detects the rRNA of the target organisms. The manufacturer's instructions were modified to use a pellet of bacteria made directly from positive blood culture broth rather than a colony from an agar plate. Two separate procedures of selective centrifugation were employed in order to obtain the pellet. The first utilized a routine clinical centrifuge and a large volume of broth (10 to 12 ml) from the blood culture bottle. The second method used a microcentrifuge and less volume (1 to 1.5 ml). A total of 196 clinical specimens taken directly from positive blood culture broths were correctly identified by AccuProbe from pellets made by using the clinical centrifuge technique, while 166 clinical specimens used as negative controls failed to show hybridization. The microcentrifuge technique for obtaining pellets was performed on 105 patient specimens, and all were correctly identified. When combined with the microcentrifuge technique for pellet preparation, the AccuProbe test has several advantages: (i) direct identification of bacteria from blood culture broths, (ii) rapid turn-around time (30 min), (iii) simplicity of the procedure, and (iv) relative low cost.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2193-2196
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of clinical microbiology
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 29 1991

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)

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