Molecular diagnostic assays for the detection of common bacterial meningitis pathogens: A narrative review
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionEBioMedicine. 2021, 65 . 10.1016/j.ebiom.2021.103274
Bacterial meningitis is a major global cause of morbidity and mortality. Rapid identification of the aetiologicalagent of meningitis is essential for clinical and public health management and disease prevention given thewide range of pathogens that cause the clinical syndrome and the availability of vaccines that protect againstsome, but not all, of these. Since microbiological culture is complex, slow, and often impacted by prior anti-microbial treatment of the patient, molecular diagnostic assays have been developed for bacterial detection.Distinguishing between meningitis caused byNeisseria meningitidis(meningococcus),Streptococcus pneumo-niae(pneumococcus),Haemophilus influenzae, andStreptococcus agalactiaeand identifying their polysaccha-ride capsules is especially important. Here, we review methods used in the identification of these bacteria,providing an up-to-date account of available assays, allowing clinicians and diagnostic laboratories to makeinformed decisions about which assays to use.