EuroPneumo Special Issue / pneumonia 2015 Oct 21;7:I–72


Utility of a reverse-hybridisation strip assay for Streptococcus

pneumoniae serotyping

María Ercibengoa 2, 3 , Susana Gamen 4 , Ana Manrique 4 , Jose María Marimón 1, 2 , Emilio Pérez-

Trallero 1, 3


Donostia University Hospital, Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain; 2 CIBERES, Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain; 3 EHU-UPV, Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain; 4 OPERON,

Zaragoza, Aragón, Spain

Surveillance of pneumococcal serotypes causing disease is essential to evaluate pneumococcal vaccination programs.

The Microbiology Department of Donostia University Hospital (San Sebastián, Spain) and the biotechnology company

Operon (Zaragoza, Spain) are developing a reverse-hybridisation strip assay to easily determine pneumococcal serotypes.

The first prototype developed includes the 13 serotypes of the PCV13 and another 4 related serotypes (6C, 6D and 18A,

18F). This first prototype was initially validated against reference isolates of the 94 pneumococcal serotypes described

up to date showing 100% specificity. Besides, it was tested with 66 clinical isolates from the Microbiology Department

collection previously serotyped with the Quellung reaction: 59 strains belonging to the 17 serotypes included in the

strip and another 7 strains of serotypes not included. All the 66 strains were correctly characterised with the reversehybridisation

strip assay. However, because of similarity of capsular sequences, serotypes 7A/7F, 9A/9V and 18B/18C

could not be differentiated. The reverse-hybridisation strip assay proved to be a good tool for pneumococcal serotyping.

An advantage of this technique as compared with the Quellung is the possibility of working in batches of samples. Other

advantages are that no experienced staff is required to obtain and interpret results, and that records of the results

(hybridised strips) can be stored. With this technique, some related serotypes could not be discriminated because of

sequences similarity.


Nasopharyngeal colonisation of Streptococcus pneumoniae in

Colombian children under five years of age, Medellin 2014

Jessica Morales 1, 3 , Carlos Eugenio Delgado 1, 3 , Beatriz Salazar 2, 4 , Leidy Acevedo 1, 2 , Johan

Bolivar 1, 2 , Sara Saldarriaga 1, 2 , Milena Cardona 1, 2 , Diego Florez 1, 2 , Steven Rivera 1, 2 , Alejandro

Gomez 1, 6 , Lorena Molina 5 , Juan David Rodriguez 5 , Laura Sanchez 5 , Ana Cecilia Diez 5 , Sandra

Castro 5 , Sven Hammerschmidt 6 , Doracelly Hincapie 3 , Gustavo Gamez 1, 2


Basic and Applied Microbiology (MICROBA) Research Group, School of Microbiology, Universidad de Antioquia, Medellín, Colombia; 2 Genetics,

Regeneration and Cancer (GRC) Research Group, University Research Center (SIU), Universidad de Antioquia, UdeA, Medellín, Colombia;


Epidemiology Research Group, National Faculty of Public Health, Universidad de Antioquia, Medellín, Colombia; 4 Bacteria and Cancer Research

Group, School of Medicine, Universidad de Antioquia, Medellín, Colombia; 5 Programa Buen Comienzo, Secretaría de Educación de Medellín,

Medellín, Colombia; 6 Department Genetics of Microorganisms, Interfaculty Institute for Genetics and Functional Genomics, University of Greifswald,

Greifswald, Germany

Human colonisation by Streptococcus pneumoniae is the main requirement for pneumococcal diseases. In Medellín,

Colombia, no studies have documented the behaviour of the pneumococcus and the public health problems it can cause

in childhood. Here, the prevalence of nasopharyngeal colonisation by S. pneumoniae and its associated factors in children

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