Molecular Test Detection

Mycoplasma pneumoniae - DNA test

Dr. Nithin Jayan
Medically Reviewed by Dr. Nithin Jayan, MBBS, DNB
Last Updated on May 20, 2014
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Test : Mycoplasma pneumoniae - DNA test

Indications : Culture isolation of M. pneumoniae is a tedious and laborious process. Diagnosis through molecular methods is specific and sensitive and is hence the preferred method to detect this human pathogen.

Samples for the test include throat or nasopharyngeal swabs, sputum, CSF, bronchial or pericardial fluid. The preferred specimen for the test is 1 ml of bronchial wash which is usually collected through bronchoscopy or sputum.

The sample is collected in an aseptic manner and transferred to a sterile container with a leak proof cap. It is then subjected to testing in the laboratory.

DNA is extracted from the sample using standard methods. Target sequences of the bacterial genome is then amplified using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method. This is followed by southern blot method or reamplification by nested PCR method to confirm the specificity of the amplified products.

Physiology : Mycoplasma pneumoniae is a human pathogen that causes a wide range of respiratory conditions ranging from mild infections to severe illness called mycoplasma pneumonia. Most cases are mild and self–limiting and do not progress into pneumonia.

The most common symptom is dry cough and persistent fever. If left untreated the disease can affect the heart and the nervous system. In rare cases it can even be fatal.

M.pneumoniae infection usually affects the elderly; those who are immune compromised or have a lung disease. It is also likely to be more prevalent in those live in crowded areas such as shelters.

Normal Range : Culture isolation of M. pneumoniae is tedious, laborous and takes several weeks, DNA detection is specific and sensitive.

Interpretation : Negative
No bacterial DNA is detected. However this does not rule out mycoplasma infection.

Positive
Mycoplasma pneumonia DNA is detected.

Sample : No Mycoplasma pneumoniae DNA

Test Method : rRNA detection

Related Tests : Sputum, throat swab, bronchial wash, lung biopsy



References : +



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