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Int J Med Microbiol. 2006 Nov;296(7):485-91. Epub 2006 Aug 4.

Low prevalence of Chlamydia pneumoniae in adults with community-acquired pneumonia.

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Institute of Medical Microbiology and Hygiene, University of Ulm, Robert-Koch-Strasse 8, D-89081 Ulm, Germany.


The incidence of community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) due to Chlamydia pneumoniae was determined in a prospective study of 546 adult patients with CAP included in the German CAP Competence Network (CAPNETZ) project. Three different PCR protocols for detection of C. pneumoniae in respiratory specimens were compared by a multicenter, inter-laboratory comparison involving three laboratories. A case was defined as a patient with a respiratory sample positive by PCR in at least two laboratories. CAP was caused by C. pneumoniae in 5/546 cases (0.9%). Antibody testing by microimmunofluorescence was done in 376 of 546 patients. All patients were negative for IgM antibodies. In the five PCR-positive patients, neither specific IgG nor IgA antibodies were found. Patients with CAP caused by C. pneumoniae had a lower median age (36 years) than the general study population (62 years). C. pneumoniae is currently a rare cause of CAP in adult patients in Germany. Analysis of a single serum sample is not useful for diagnosis of acute C. pneumoniae infection in CAP.

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