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J Clin Microbiol. May 1979; 9(5): 570–574.
PMCID: PMC275349

Methods for serotyping nasopharyngeal isolates of Haemophilus influenzae: slide agglutination, Quellung reaction, countercurrent immunoelectrophoresis, latex agglutination, and antiserum agar.


Nasopharyngeal isolates of H. influenzae were typed by the slide agglutination test, the Quelling reaction, the latex agglutination test, countercurrent immunoelectrophoresis, and the antiserum agar test. These tests gave essentially comparable results, with countercurrent immunoelectrophoresis and latex agglutination being slightly more sensitive. Cross-reactive problems encountered with latex agglutination and the expense of performing countercurrent immunoelectrophoresis or the antiserum agar test made these tests less practical than the slide agglutination test to identify single strains that were already isolated. The Quellung reaction and slide agglutination were the most rapid tests used to type an organism. For mass screening of multiple samples, countercurrent immunoelectrophoresis was the simplest technique. The antiserum agar test was slow but was the best technique to screen nasopharyngeal swab cultures to identify the presence of any encapsulated strains in the mixed flora. Whether any of the above techniques were as sensitive as the immunofluorescence test was not evaluated in this study.

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Selected References

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