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J Clin Microbiol. 1998 Apr;36(4):983-5.

Identification of Lactococcus garvieae by PCR.

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Department of Clinical Microbiology, The Hebrew University-Hadassah Medical School, Jerusalem, Israel.


Lactococcus garvieae junior synonym Enterococcus seriolicida) is an emerging zoonotic agent isolated from economically important fish (rainbow trout and yellowtail), from cattle, and from humans. Clindamycin susceptibility is the only phenotypic test which can differentiate L. garvieae from Lactococcus lactis, another emerging agent in humans. A PCR assay for the identification of L. garvieae was developed and resulted in an amplified fragment of 1,100 bp in size. The PCR assay was shown to be specific to L. garvieae. The PCR assay was positive for all the L. garvieae strains tested, which originated from three different continents (Asia, Australia, and Europe). The PCR assay was negative for the phenotypically similar L. lactis and for all the other fish pathogens tested, including Streptococcus iniae and Aeromonas salmonicida. The PCR assay was applied to plasma obtained from diseased animals and was found sensitive enough to detect bacteria from 1 microl of plasma. The PCR assay that was developed is the only practical test besides the clindamycin test which can specifically identify the zoonotic agent L. garvieae and which can differentiate it from L. lactis.

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