Performance of MALDI-TOF Mass Spectrometry for the Identification of the HACEK Group and Other Fastidious Gram-Negative Rods
Marisa Almuzara1, Karen C. V. Cárdenas1, Claudia Barberis1, Maria S. Ramirez2, Angela Famiglietti1, Carlos Vay1
1 Universidad de Buenos Aires, Facultad de Farmacia y Bioquímica, Laboratorio de Bacteriología, Departamento de Bioquímica Clínica Hospital de Clínicas José de San Martín Ciudad Autónoma de Buenos Aires, Argentina
2 Center for Applied Biotechnology Studies, Department of Biological Science, California State University Fullerton, Fullerton, CA, USA
The aim of this study was to determine the capacity of matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) to identify 155 HACEK clinical isolates and other fastidious or infrequently isolated Gram-negative rods (e.g., Actinobacillus, Capnocytophaga, Pasteurella, Neisseria, Moraxella, Dysgonomonas, among others).
All the isolates were identified by standard biochemical tests and MALDI-TOF MS. Two different extraction methods (direct transfer formic acid method on spot and ethanol formic acid extraction method) and different cut-offs for genus/specie level identification were used. MALDI-TOF MS identification was considered correct when the result obtained from the MS database agreed with the phenotypic identification result.
When both the methods gave discordant results, the 16S rDNA gene sequencing was considered as the gold standard identification method.
Employing the score cut-offs suggested by the manufacturer, 93.55% and 69.03% isolates were correctly identified at the genus and species level, respectively. On the contrary , employing lower cut-off scores for identification, 98.06% and 92.09% isolates were properly identified at the genus and species level respectively and no significant differences between the results obtained with two extraction methods were observed .
The accurate identification of 14 genera showed the reliability of MALDI-TOF MS as an optional methodology to the routine identification methods currently used in laboratories.
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* Address correspondence to this author at the Universidad de Buenos Aires. Facultad de Farmacia y Bioquímica, Laboratorio de Bacteriología, Departamento de Bioquímica Clínica Hospital de Clínicas José de San Martín Ciudad Autónoma de Buenos Aires, Argentina; Tel: 54 11 59508663;
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