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Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis. 2002 Jul;21(7):549-52. Epub 2002 Jun 28.

Comparison of the E test and agar dilution method for antimicrobial suceptibility testing of Helicobacter pylori.

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Laboratoire de bactériologie, Cliniques Universitaires U.C.L. de Mont-Godinne, 1 Avenue Dr. Therasse, 5530 Yvoir, Belgium.


A multicentre study was carried out in order to validate the E test in comparison with the reference agar dilution method for testing the susceptibility of Helicobacter pylori to amoxicillin, clarithromycin, and metronidazole. Ten clinical isolates and one control collection isolate ( Helicobacter pylori ATCC 43504) were tested blindly at four centres according to a uniform methodology. The E test showed excellent intra- and inter-laboratory correlations with the agar dilution method for amoxicillin and clarithromycin (>98% agreement within 2 log(2) dilution steps). For metronidazole, however, the E test revealed significantly higher minimum inhibitory concentration values (>2 log(2)) against 5 of the 10 Helicobacter pylori strains tested. Overall, neither method was found reliable for testing the susceptibility of Helicobacter pylori to metronidazole, since both tended to lack reproducibility.

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