Molecular genotyping of Acinetobacter spp. isolated in Arizona, USA, using multilocus PCR and mass spectrometry

Derek S. Sarovich, Rebecca E. Colman, Erin P. Price, Christian Massire, Alex T. Von Schulze, Victor Waddell, Shoana M. Anderson, David J. Ecker, Andrew P. Liguori, David M. Engelthaler, Rangarajan Sampath, Paul Keim, Mark W. Eshoo, David M. Wagner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Acinetobacter spp. are a diverse group of Gram-negative bacteria frequently implicated in nosocomial infections. Genotypic methods have been instrumental in studying Acinetobacter, but few offer high resolution, rapid turnaround time, technical ease and high inter-laboratory reproducibility, which has hampered understanding of disease incidence, transmission patterns and diversity within this genus. Here, we further evaluated multilocus PCR electrospray ionization/ mass spectrometry (PCR/ESI-MS), a method that is simple and robust, and provides both species characterization and strain-level resolution of Acinetobacter spp. on a single platform. We examined 125 Acinetobacter isolates from 21 hospitals, laboratories and medical centres spanning four counties in Arizona, USA, using PCR/ESI-MS. We compared PCR/ESI-MS with an in-house amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) genotyping scheme. PCR/ESI-MS demonstrated that Acinetobacter spp. from Arizonan hospitals had similar species and strain distributions to other US civilian hospitals. Furthermore, we showed that the PCR/ESI-MS and AFLP genotypes were highly congruent, with the former having the advantages of robust interlaboratory reproducibility, rapid turnaround time and simple experimental set-up and data analysis. PCR/ESI-MS is an effective and high-throughput platform for strain typing of Acinetobacter baumannii and for identification of other Acinetobacter spp., including the emerging nosocomial pathogens Acinetobacter pittii and Acinetobacter nosocomialis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1295-1300
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Medical Microbiology
StatePublished - 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Microbiology (medical)


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