Natália Kehl Moreira, Camila Mörschbächer Wilhelm, Fabiana Caroline Zempulski Volpato, Afonso Luís Barth, Juliana Caierão

Detection of Carbapenem Resistance in Enterobacterales Directly From Positive Blood Cultures Using Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption Ionization Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometry

  • Medical Laboratory Technology
  • General Medicine
  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine

Context.— Carbapenem-resistant Enterobacterales are disseminated worldwide and associated with infections with high rates of morbidity and mortality. Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) is a useful tool for identification of pathogens directly from blood cultures in clinical microbiology laboratories. Furthermore, it has been applied for the detection of carbapenemase production, by evaluating carbapenem hydrolysis. Objective.— To determine meropenem hydrolysis to detect carbapenemase production directly from positive blood cultures, using logRQ to establish a quantitative measure of hydrolysis. Design.— We evaluated 100 Enterobacterales from positive blood cultures, with 81 carrying a carbapenemase gene (blaKPC, blaGES, blaNDM-1, blaIMP, blaVIM, and blaOXA-48-like), as determined by real-time multiplex polymerase chain reaction with high-resolution melting (HRM-qPCR). Bacterial proteins extracted from positive blood culture bottles were incubated in a meropenem solution (2–4 hours) followed by centrifugation for MALDI-TOF MS analysis. The intensity of peaks of the hydrolyzed and nonhydrolyzed forms were used to calculate the logRQ value. Results.— Overall, sensitivity was 86.8% and specificity, 89.5%. Of note, sensitivity varied depending on enzyme type. For blaKPC-positive isolates, sensitivity was 97.9%, while it reduced significantly for blaNDM-1 and blaOXA-48-like isolates: 62.5% (10 of 16) and 66.7% (6 of 9), respectively. Indeed, logRQ was higher in blaKPC-positive isolates (0.37–1.97) than in blaNDM-1 (−1.37 to 0.83) and blaOXA-48-like isolates (−1.08 to 1.79). Conclusions.— This is an inexpensive and rapid test to identify carbapenemase activity directly from blood culture bottles, which contributes to early adequate antimicrobial therapy and implementation of infection control measures.

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