MALDI-TOF-MS-based species identification and typing approaches in medical mycology

Authors

  • Oliver Bader

    Corresponding author
    • Institute for Medical Microbiology and German National Reference Center for Systemic Mycoses, University Medical Center Göttingen, Göttingen, Germany
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Correspondence: Dr. Oliver Bader, Institute for Medical Microbiology and German National Reference Center for Systemic Mycoses, University Medical Center Göttingen, Kreuzbergring 57, 37075 Göttingen, Germany

E-mail: obader@gwdg.de

Fax: +49 551 39 5861

Abstract

MALDI-TOF MS-based species identification has found its place in many clinical routine diagnostic laboratories over the past years. Several well-established commercial systems exist and these allow precise analyses not only among bacteria, but also among clinically important yeasts. This methodology shows higher precision than biochemical and microscopic methods at significantly reduced turnaround times. Furthermore, the differentiation of different filamentous fungi including most dermatophytes and zygomycetes has been established. The direct identification of yeasts from blood culture bottles will be possible in a routine fashion with new standardized procedures. In addition to species identification, the MALDI-TOF MS technology offers several further possibilities, like assays to detect or predict resistance phenotypes in fungi as well as subtyping approaches to detect clinically relevant subgroups. The differences between the commercial systems are discussed with respect to fungi and an overview of their performances provided. Factors influencing outcome of MALDI-TOF-based species identification are discussed.

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