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      Molecular diagnosis of sepsis: New aspects and recent developments

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          By shortening the time to pathogen identification and allowing for detection of organisms missed by blood culture, new molecular methods may provide clinical benefits for the management of patients with sepsis. While a number of reviews on the diagnosis of sepsis have recently been published we here present up-to-date new developments including multiplex PCR, mass spectrometry and array techniques. We focus on those techniques that are commercially available and for which clinical studies have been performed and published.

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          Ongoing revolution in bacteriology: routine identification of bacteria by matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry.

          Matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization time-of-flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectrometry accurately identifies both selected bacteria and bacteria in select clinical situations. It has not been evaluated for routine use in the clinic. We prospectively analyzed routine MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry identification in parallel with conventional phenotypic identification of bacteria regardless of phylum or source of isolation. Discrepancies were resolved by 16S ribosomal RNA and rpoB gene sequence-based molecular identification. Colonies (4 spots per isolate directly deposited on the MALDI-TOF plate) were analyzed using an Autoflex II Bruker Daltonik mass spectrometer. Peptidic spectra were compared with the Bruker BioTyper database, version 2.0, and the identification score was noted. Delays and costs of identification were measured. Of 1660 bacterial isolates analyzed, 95.4% were correctly identified by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry; 84.1% were identified at the species level, and 11.3% were identified at the genus level. In most cases, absence of identification (2.8% of isolates) and erroneous identification (1.7% of isolates) were due to improper database entries. Accurate MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry identification was significantly correlated with having 10 reference spectra in the database (P=.01). The mean time required for MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry identification of 1 isolate was 6 minutes for an estimated 22%-32% cost of current methods of identification. MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry is a cost-effective, accurate method for routine identification of bacterial isolates in or =10 reference spectra per bacterial species and a 1.9 identification score (Brucker system). It may replace Gram staining and biochemical identification in the near future.
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            Time to initiation of fluconazole therapy impacts mortality in patients with candidemia: a multi-institutional study.

            Inadequate antimicrobial treatment is an independent determinant of hospital mortality, and fungal bloodstream infections are among the types of infection with the highest rates of inappropriate initial treatment. Because of significant potential for reducing high mortality rates, we sought to assess the impact of delayed treatment across multiple study sites. The goals our analyses were to establish the frequency and duration of delayed antifungal treatment and to evaluate the relationship between treatment delay and mortality. We conducted a retrospective cohort study of patients with candidemia from 4 medical centers who were prescribed fluconazole. Time to initiation of fluconazole therapy was calculated by subtracting the date on which fluconazole therapy was initiated from the culture date of the first blood sample positive for yeast. A total of 230 patients (51% male; mean age +/- standard deviation, 56 +/- 17 years) were identified; 192 of these had not been given prior treatment with fluconazole. Patients most commonly had nonsurgical hospital admission (162 patients [70%]) with a central line catheter (193 [84%]), diabetes (68 [30%]), or cancer (54 [24%]). Candida species causing infection included Candida albicans (129 patients [56%]), Candida glabrata (38 [16%]), Candida parapsilosis (25 [11%]), or Candida tropicalis (15 [7%]). The number of days to the initiation of antifungal treatment was 0 (92 patients [40%]), 1 (38 [17%]), 2 (33 [14%]) or > or = 3 (29 [12%]). Mortality rates were lowest for patients who began therapy on day 0 (14 patients [15%]) followed by patients who began on day 1 (9 [24%]), day 2 (12 [37%]), or day > or = 3 (12 [41%]) (P = .0009 for trend). Multivariate logistic regression was used to calculate independent predictors of mortality, which include increased time until fluconazole initiation (odds ratio, 1.42; P < .05) and Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation II score (1-point increments; odds ratio, 1.13; P < .05). A delay in the initiation of fluconazole therapy in hospitalized patients with candidemia significantly impacted mortality. New methods to avoid delays in appropriate antifungal therapy, such as rapid diagnostic tests or identification of unique risk factors, are needed.
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              Hospitalizations, costs, and outcomes of severe sepsis in the United States 2003 to 2007.

              To assess trends in number of hospitalizations, outcomes, and costs of severe sepsis in the United States. Temporal trends study using the Nationwide Inpatient Sample. Adult patients with severe sepsis (defined as a diagnosis of sepsis and organ dysfunction) diagnosed between 2003 and 2007. We determined the weighted frequency of patients hospitalized with severe sepsis. We calculated age- and sex-adjusted population-based mortality rates for severe sepsis per 100,000 population and also used logistic regression to adjust in-hospital mortality rates for patient characteristics. We calculated inflation-adjusted costs using hospital-specific cost-to-charge ratios. We identified a rapid steady increase in the number of cases of severe sepsis, from 415,280 in 2003 to 711,736 in 2007 (a 71% increase). The total hospital costs for all patients with severe sepsis increased from $15.4 billion in 2003 to $24.3 billion in 2007 (57% increase). The proportion of patients with severe sepsis and only a single organ dysfunction decreased from 51% in 2003 to 45% in 2007 (p < .001), whereas the proportion of patients with three or four or more organ dysfunctions increased 1.19-fold and 1.51-fold, respectively (p < .001). During the same time period, we observed 2% decrease per year in hospital mortality for patients with severe sepsis (p < .001), as well as a slight decrease in the length of stay (9.9 days to 9.2 days; p < .001) and a significant decrease in the geometric mean cost per case of severe sepsis ($20,210 per case in 2003 and $19,330 in 2007; p = .025). The increase in the number of hospitalizations for severe sepsis coupled with declining in-hospital mortality and declining geometric mean cost per case may reflect improvements in care or increases in discharges to skilled nursing facilities; however, these findings more likely represent changes in documentation and hospital coding practices that could bias efforts to conduct national surveillance.

                Author and article information

                Role: Chief Medical Officer
                European Journal of Microbiology and Immunology
                Akadémiai Kiadó, co-published with Springer Science+Business Media B.V., Formerly Kluwer Academic Publishers B.V.
                1 March 2014
                : 4
                : 1
                : 1-25
                [ 1 ] Medical and Scientific Affairs, 4300 Hacienda Dr., Roche Molecular Diagnostics, Pleasanton, CA, 94566, USA
                [ 2 ] Department of Anaesthesiology and Pain Medicine, Inselspital, University of Bern, Freiburgstrasse, CH-3010, Bern, Switzerland
                [ 3 ] Institute for Laboratory Medicine, Microbiology and Infection Control, Northwest Medical Centre, Steinbacher Hohl 2-26, D-60488, Frankfurt am Main, Germany
                [ 4 ] Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, School of Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA, 95616, USA
                Author notes
                [* ] +1 925 730 8006, +1 925 730 8985, oliver.liesenfeld@
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