Low-cost colorimetric diagnostic screening assay for methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus

in: Talanta (2021)
Raji, Muhabat A.; Chinnappan, Raja; Shibl, Atef M.; Suaifan, Ghadeer A.R.; Weber, Karina; Popp, Jürgen; Cialla-May, Dana; El Shorbagy, Enas; Al-Kattan, Khaled; Zourob, Mohammed
The timely diagnosis of MRSA in clinical samples helps to reduce the attendant morbidity/mortality associated with infection due to the organism. The early institution of appropriate therapy or deployment of infection control protocols are dependent on a timely report from the microbiology laboratory. Various assays currently used in the identification of MRSA are associated with inherent shortcomings, thus there is a need to explore newer diagnostic frontiers that can eliminate some of these short comings at a relatively cheap, timely, specific and sensitive manner. We present in this study a MRSA specific optical immunosensor to detect the presence of the pathogen on contaminated surface using control and patient strains. Results revealed a detection limits of 103 CFU mL-1 upon visual observation, and 29 CFU mL-1 as determined by the linear regression equation, following the use of ImageJ to quantify activated cotton swab color intensity. The specificity of the sensor was examined by blind testing a panel of non-MRSA bacteria (E. coli, S. aureus and S. epidermis). Negative visual read-out was observed for all tested non-specific bacteria except for MRSA. Assay takes an average of 5 min and presents a powerful point-of-care diagnostic platform for the detection of MRSA.

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