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J Clin Microbiol. Mar 1991; 29(3): 533–538.
PMCID: PMC269813

Comparison of the E Test to agar dilution, broth microdilution, and agar diffusion susceptibility testing techniques by using a special challenge set of bacteria.


The E Test (AB Biodisk, Solna, Sweden) is a new method for performing antimicrobial susceptibility tests. It consists of an impervious carrier (5- by 50-mm strip) with a predefined antimicrobic gradient which is placed on an inoculated agar plate and processed like a disk diffusion test. Results are generated directly as MICs from a continuous concentration gradient covering 15 twofold dilutions, and MICs are read where the edge of the inhibition zone intersects the strip. We compared the E Test with disk diffusion, broth microdilution, and agar dilution tests by using a challenge set of 195 gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria for 14 antimicrobial agents. Also, disk diffusion, broth microdilution, and agar dilution tests were compared with each other. All test method comparisons gave greater than 94% agreement for the category of susceptibility. The E Test category agreement with disk diffusion and broth microdilution was 95.1%, and with agar dilution it was 95.2%. The E Test results were as reliable as the results obtained by the standard antimicrobial susceptibility testing methods.

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Selected References

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  • Baker CN, Stocker SA, Rhoden DL, Thornsberry C. Evaluation of the MicroScan antimicrobial susceptibility system with the autoSCAN-4 automated reader. J Clin Microbiol. 1986 Jan;23(1):143–148. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Barry AL, Thornsberry C, Gavan TL, Jones RN. Interpretive standards and quality control guidelines for imipenem susceptibility tests with 10-micrograms disks. J Clin Microbiol. 1984 Nov;20(5):988–989. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Bauer AW, Kirby WM, Sherris JC, Turck M. Antibiotic susceptibility testing by a standardized single disk method. Am J Clin Pathol. 1966 Apr;45(4):493–496. [PubMed]

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