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Non-pneumococcal mitis-group streptococci confound detection of pneumococcal capsular serotype-specific loci in upper respiratory tract

Author(s): Maria da Gloria Carvalho | Fabiana C. Pimenta | Iaci Moura | Alexis Roundtree | Robert E. Gertz Jr | Zhongya Li | Geofrey Jagero | Godfrey Bigogo | Muthoni Junghae | Laura Conklin | Daniel R. Feikin | Robert F. Breiman | Cynthia G. Whitney | Bernard W. Beall

Journal: PeerJ
ISSN 2167-8359

Volume: 1;
Start page: e97;
Date: 2013;
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Keywords: Pneumococcal serotype-specific loci | Mitis group streptococci | Oropharyngeal and nasopharyngeal flora | PCR for serotype deduction

We performed culture-based and PCR-based tests for pneumococcal identification and serotyping from carriage specimens collected in rural and urban Kenya. Nasopharyngeal specimens from 237 healthy children 98.7%) with the reference cmPCR amplicon for the st, while cmPCR amplicons from lytA-negative specimens were generally more divergent. Separate testing of 56 A-OPs and 56 A-NPs revealed that ∼94% of the positive cmPCR results from A-NP/OPs were from OP microbiota. In contrast, A-NPs yielded >2-fold more pneumococcal isolates than A-OPs. Verified and suspected non-pneumococcal cmPCR serotypes/serogroups appeared to be relatively rare in C-NPs and A-NPs compared to A-OPs. Our findings indicate that non-pneumococcal species can confound serotype-specific PCR and other sequence-based assays due to evolutionarily conserved genes most likely involved in biosynthesis of surface polysaccharide structures.

Tango Jona
Tangokurs Rapperswil-Jona

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