Development of a novel method for detection of C. difficile using HS-SPME-GC-MS

Tait, Emma, Hill, Kerry, Perry, John, Stanforth, Stephen and Dean, John (2014) Development of a novel method for detection of C. difficile using HS-SPME-GC-MS. Journal of Applied Microbiology, 116 (4). pp. 1010-1019. ISSN 1364-5072

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AIMS:A novel method has been developed that allows successful differentiation between Clostridium difficile culture-positive and culture-negative stool samples based on volatile organic compound (VOC) evolution and detection by headspace solid-phase microextraction coupled with gas chromatography mass spectrometry (HS-SPME-GC-MS).

METHODS AND RESULTS: The method is based on the activation of p-hydroxyphenylacetate decarboxylase produced by Cl. difficile and the detection of a specific VOC, that is 2-fluoro-4-methylphenol from an enzyme substrate. In addition, other VOCs were good indicators for Cl. difficile, that is isocaproic acid and p-cresol, although they could not be used alone for identification purposes. One hundred stool samples were tested, of which 77 were positive by culture. Detection using HS-SPME-GC-MS allowed confirmation of the presence of Cl. difficile within 18 h with a sensitivity and specificity of 83·1 and 100%, respectively.

CONCLUSIONS: It is recommended that this new approach could be used alongside conventional methods for Cl. difficile detection, including toxin detection methods, which would allow any false-negative results to be eliminated.

SIGNIFICANCE AND IMPACT OF THE STUDY: The ability to identify Cl. difficile-positive stool samples by the analysis of VOCs could allow the development of a VOC detection device which could allow rapid diagnosis of disease and hence prompt treatment with appropriate antibiotics.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: C. difficile, stool samples, HS-SPME-GC-MS, specificity, phydroxyphenylacetate decarboxylase enzyme
Subjects: F100 Chemistry
Department: Faculties > Health and Life Sciences > Applied Sciences
Depositing User: Becky Skoyles
Date Deposited: 20 Dec 2013 15:28
Last Modified: 17 Dec 2023 14:50

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