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Latest Legionnaires' Outbreak Highlights Role of Rapid Tests


The UK's latest fatal outbreak of Legionnaires' Disease in Hereford has highlighted the need to trace and disinfect the source of infection as quickly as possible.

Conclusive proof that a suspect source is a reservoir of Legionella pneumophila can only be obtained by matching isolates obtained from patients with isolates from environmental samples, placing strong emphasis on the role of accurate confirmatory tests following appropriate culture.

Photograph: Thermo Scientific produce a range of Diagnostic Reagent Kits including Thermo Scientific Legionella Latex Agglutination Test which provides rapid identification of individual species in less than one minute.

Rapid and reliable identification of suspect organisms is also essential from a clinical point of view, facilitating the prompt administration of suitable antibiotics. Such an approach is particularly important in monitoring patients presenting with influenza-like symptoms.

Thermo Scientific's range of Legionella culture media and confirmatory tests is designed to allow rapid screening for all pathogenic Legionella species to be performed quickly and easily, even in small local laboratories.

Both clinical and environmental specimens can be cultured on Thermo Scientific Legionella CYE Agar Base supplemented with Legionella BCYE Growth Supplement, with or without L-cysteine. If colonies grow on L-cysteine containing agar and not on agar without, Legionella species are definitely present. Thermo Scientific Legionella (GVPN) Selective Supplement (introduced in 2003 as a cycloheximide-free, and therefore safer, alternative to GVPC medium) is intended for use with Legionella CYE Agar Base and BCYE Growth Supplement for the detection and enumeration of Legionella species from environmental water samples.

The Thermo Scientific Legionella Latex Agglutination Test provides rapid identification of individual species in less than one minute, using three separate blue latex reagents (one for L. pneumophila serogroup 1, one for serogroups 2 - 14 and a third for other pathogenic Legionella species).

These latex tests are also available in the convenient Dryspot™ format, in which test and control latex reagents are supplied dried on to reaction cards, eliminating the need to store and dispense wet reagents.

To find out more about these products please contact Carlene Simmons, Thermo Scientific, telephone: +44 (0) 1256 841144, fax: +44 (0) 1256 329728, email: leslie.bissell@thermofisher.com or visit www.oxoid.com.

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Source : Thermo Scientific. View Company Information

Posted on December 5, 2003