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Clin Microbiol Infect. 2011 Jul;17(7):1007-12. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-0691.2010.03339.x. Epub 2010 Nov 26.

Rapid method for direct identification of bacteria in urine and blood culture samples by matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry: intact cell vs. extraction method.

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Unidad de Investigación, Hospital Universitario de Salamanca, Salamanca, Spain.


Matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization time-of-flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectrometry (MS) is a fast and reliable technology for the identification of microorganisms with proteomics approaches. Here, we compare an intact cell method and a protein extraction method before application on the MALDI plate for the direct identification of microorganisms in both urine and blood culture samples from clinical microbiology laboratories. The results show that the intact cell method provides excellent results for urine and is a good initial method for blood cultures. The extraction method complements the intact cell method, improving microorganism identification from blood culture. Thus, we consider that MALDI-TOF MS performed directly on urine and blood culture samples, with the protocols that we propose, is a suitable technique for microorganism identification, as compared with the routine methods used in the clinical microbiology laboratory.

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