A typing system for Neisseria gonorrhoeae based on biotinylated oligonucleotide probes to PIB gene variable regions

Dorothea K. Thompson, Carolyn D. Deal, Catherine A. Ison, Jonathan Mark Zenilman, Margaret C. Bash

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The porin proteins PIA and PIB of Neisseria gonorrhoeae are serotyping antigens for the serovar classification system and leading candidates for gonococcal vaccine development. Although serotyping has been a useful tool, this method can be insensitive to critical sequence changes in the pot gene, including those in surface-exposed variable regions (VRs). A sensitive and specific typing system for N. gonorrhoeae has been developed that uses biotin-labeled oligonucleotide probes with chemiluminescence detection to type PIB gene VRs. The PIB VR types of geographically and temporally diverse gonococcal strains and sexual contact isolates were determined. por VR typing discriminated between most unrelated isolates and provided information about individual VR type that was not apparent from serovar designations. PIB VR typing avoids limited monoclonal antibody availability, interlaboratory variation, and the requirement for culture-based surveillance associated with gonococcal serotyping, and provides useful information about the molecular epidemiology of individual pot gene VRs.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Immunology

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