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Appl Environ Microbiol. 2014 Jun;80(12):3757-68. doi: 10.1128/AEM.01026-14. Epub 2014 Apr 11.

Development and evaluation of a novel multicopy-element-targeting triplex PCR for detection of Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis in feces.

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  • 1Departamento de Sanidad Animal, NEIKER-Tecnalia, Derio, Biscay, Spain isevilla@neiker.net.
  • 2Departamento de Sanidad Animal, NEIKER-Tecnalia, Derio, Biscay, Spain.


The enteropathy called paratuberculosis (PTB), which mainly affects ruminants and has a worldwide distribution, is caused by Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis. This disease significantly reduces the cost-effectiveness of ruminant farms, and therefore, reliable and rapid detection methods are needed to control the spread of the bacterium in livestock and in the environment. The aim of this study was to identify a specific and sensitive combination of DNA extraction and amplification to detect M. avium subsp. paratuberculosis in feces. Negative bovine fecal samples were inoculated with increasing concentrations of two different bacterial strains (field and reference) to compare the performance of four extraction and five amplification protocols. The best results were obtained using the JohnePrep and MagMax extraction kits combined with an in-house triplex real-time PCR designed to detect IS900, ISMap02 (an insertion sequence of M. avium subsp. paratuberculosis present in 6 copies per genome), and an internal amplification control DNA simultaneously. These combinations detected 10 M. avium subsp. paratuberculosis cells/g of spiked feces. The triplex PCR detected 1 fg of genomic DNA extracted from the reference strain K10. The performance of the robotized version of the MagMax extraction kit combined with the IS900 and ISMap02 PCR was further evaluated using 615 archival fecal samples from the first sampling of nine Friesian cattle herds included in a PTB control program and followed up for at least 4 years. The analysis of the results obtained in this survey demonstrated that the diagnostic method was highly specific and sensitive for the detection of M. avium subsp. paratuberculosis in fecal samples from cattle and a very valuable tool to be used in PTB control programs.

Copyright © 2014, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

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