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PCR for the detection of pathogens in neonatal early onset sepsis.

Oeser, C; Pond, M; Butcher, P; Bedford Russell, A; Henneke, P; Laing, K; Planche, T; Heath, PT; Harris, K (2020) PCR for the detection of pathogens in neonatal early onset sepsis. PLoS One, 15 (1). e0226817. ISSN 1932-6203
SGUL Authors: Butcher, Philip David Planche, Timothy David

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BACKGROUND: A large proportion of neonates are treated for presumed bacterial sepsis with broad spectrum antibiotics even though their blood cultures subsequently show no growth. This study aimed to investigate PCR-based methods to identify pathogens not detected by conventional culture. METHODS: Whole blood samples of 208 neonates with suspected early onset sepsis were tested using a panel of multiplexed bacterial PCRs targeting Streptococcus pneumoniae, Streptococcus agalactiae (GBS), Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pyogenes (GAS), Enterobacteriaceae, Enterococcus faecalis, Enterococcus faecium, Ureaplasma parvum, Ureaplasma urealyticum, Mycoplasma hominis and Mycoplasma genitalium, a 16S rRNA gene broad-range PCR and a multiplexed PCR for Candida spp. RESULTS: Two-hundred and eight samples were processed. In five of those samples, organisms were detected by conventional culture; all of those were also identified by PCR. PCR detected bacteria in 91 (45%) of the 203 samples that did not show bacterial growth in culture. S. aureus, Enterobacteriaceae and S. pneumoniae were the most frequently detected pathogens. A higher bacterial load detected by PCR was correlated positively with the number of clinical signs at presentation. CONCLUSION: Real-time PCR has the potential to be a valuable additional tool for the diagnosis of neonatal sepsis.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2020 Oeser et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Keywords: MD Multidisciplinary, General Science & Technology
SGUL Research Institute / Research Centre: Academic Structure > Infection and Immunity Research Institute (INII)
Journal or Publication Title: PLoS One
ISSN: 1932-6203
Language: eng
24 January 2020Published
5 December 2019Accepted
Publisher License: Creative Commons: Attribution 4.0
PubMed ID: 31978082
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