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To assess the applicability of a newly emerging microchip gel electrophoresis for rapid strain differentiation among clinical isolates of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and to compare this technique with the traditional gel method for DNA separation.
One hundred clinical strains of P. aeruginosa obtained from a hospital in northwestern Ohio were tested for reactivity to 3 serotype-specific monoclonal antibodies by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Twelve strains (4 from each serogroup) were selected for DNA analysis by polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based, single primer DNA fingerprinting methods with 3 different primers: 1 enterobacterial repetitive intergenic consensus PCR and 2 arbitrarily primed PCRs. The PCR products were analyzed by agarose slab gel and microchip gel electrophoresis.
Of the 100 clinical isolates tested, 39% (4%, 14%, and 21%) were found to be serotypes 0:3, 0:6, and 0:11, respectively. Twelve strains were chosen for DNA analysis by PCR. The PCR products were analyzed by agarose slab gel electrophoresis and on microchips to determine interspecies diversity. Both methods demonstrated that different serotypes exhibited different electrophoretic patterns. Two strains (clinical strains 6 and 7, serotype 0:6) showed identical patterns, indicating a high degree of relatedness.
In all cases, there was concordance between the electrophoretic patterns detected by the two methods. The capability of conducting both PCR and microchip gel electrophoresis offers an opportunity for an automated and rapid method for genetic analysis and differentiation among strains of P. aeruginosa and other microorganisms.
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