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Clin Microbiol Infect. 2011 May;17(5):668-74. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-0691.2010.03299.x.

Comparison of disk diffusion, Etest and VITEK2 for detection of carbapenemase-producing Klebsiella pneumoniae with the EUCAST and CLSI breakpoint systems.

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Clinical Microbiology, MTC, Karolinska Institutet, Karolinska University Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden.


The aim of this study was to compare CLSI and EUCAST MIC and disk diffusion carbapenem breakpoints for the detection of carbapenemase-producing Klebsiella pneumoniae. K. pneumoniae strains with known KPC (n = 31) or VIM (n = 20) carbapenemases were characterized by disk diffusion (Oxoid) and Etest (bioMérieux) vs. imipenem, meropenem and ertapenem, and with VITEK2 (bioMérieux, five different cards). Extended-spectrum β-lactamase (ESBL) testing was performed with VITEK2 (bioMérieux), ESBL combination disks (Becton Dickinson) and the ESBL Etest (bioMérieux). With CLSI and EUCAST MIC breakpoints, respectively, 11 and seven of the strains were susceptible to imipenem, 12 and eight to meropenem, and seven and none to ertapenem. The EUCAST epidemiological cut-off (ECOFF) values for meropenem and ertapenem identified all carbapenemase producers, whereas the imipenem ECOFF failed in five strains. All carbapenemase producers were detected with EUCAST disk diffusion breakpoints for ertapenem and meropenem, and four strains were susceptible to imipenem. CLSI disk diffusion breakpoints characterized 18 (imipenem), 14 (meropenem) and three (ertapenem) isolates as susceptible. When cards with a single carbapenem were used, detection failures with VITEK2 were four for imipenem, none for meropenem and one for ertapenem. Cards containing all three carbapenems had one to two failures. With ESBL combination disks, 21/31 KPC producers and 2/20 VIM producers were positive. With VITEK2, no VIM producers and between none and seven KPC producers were ESBL-positive. All carbapenemase producers were detected with the meropenem MIC ECOFF, or the clinical EUCAST breakpoint for ertapenem. EUCAST disk diffusion breakpoints for meropenem and ertapenem detected all carbapenemase producers. VITEK2 had between none and four failures in detecting carbapenemase producers, depending on the antibiotic card.

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