BMC microbiology

Rapid and reliable identification of Gram-negative bacteria and Gram-positive cocci by deposition of bacteria harvested from blood cultures onto the MALDI-TOF plate.

PMID 26084329


Rapid identification of the causative agent(s) of bloodstream infections using the matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight (MALDI-TOF) methodology can lead to increased empirical antimicrobial therapy appropriateness. Herein, we aimed at establishing an easier and simpler method, further referred to as the direct method, using bacteria harvested by serum separator tubes from positive blood cultures and placed onto the polished steel target plate for rapid identification by MALDI-TOF. The results by the direct method were compared with those obtained by MALDI-TOF on bacteria isolated on solid media. Identification of Gram-negative bacilli was 100 % concordant using the direct method or MALDI-TOF on isolated bacteria (96 % with score > 2.0). These two methods were 90 % concordant on Gram-positive cocci (32 % with score > 2.0). Identification by the SepsiTyper method of Gram-positive cocci gave concordant results with MALDI-TOF on isolated bacteria in 87 % of cases (37 % with score > 2.0). The direct method herein developed allows rapid identification (within 30 min) of Gram-negative bacteria and Gram-positive cocci from positive blood cultures and can be used to rapidly report reliable and accurate results, without requiring skilled personnel or the use of expensive kits.