Clinical validation of the molecular BD GeneOhm StaphSR assay for direct detection of Staphylococcus aureus and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus in positive blood cultures

Paul D. Stamper, Mian Cai, Tracy Howard, Sharon Speser, Karen C. Carroll

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The rapid detection of Staphylococcus aureus bacteremia and a swift determination of methicillin susceptibility has serious clinical implications affecting patient mortality. This study evaluated the StaphSR assay (BD GeneOhm, San Diego, CA), a real-time PCR assay, for the identification and differentiation of methicillin-susceptible S. aureus (MSSA) and methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) from 300 positive blood cultures. The BD GeneOhm StaphSR assay was performed and interpreted according to the manufacturer's recommendations. Positive blood cultures (containing predominantly gram-positive cocci in clusters) were subcultured on 5% sheep blood agar plates. After 18 to 24 h of incubation, isolates morphologically consistent with S. aureus were presumptively identified by latex agglutination (Staphaurex Plus; Remel, Lenexa, KS). Susceptibility testing was initially performed with the Phoenix automated microbiology system (BD Diagnostics, Sparks, MD). Additional susceptibility testing of samples with discrepant results was done using BBL oxacillin screen agar (BD Diagnostics, Sparks, MD), oxacillin and cefoxitin Etests (AB Biodisk, Solna, Sweden) on Mueller-Hinton agar, an immunoassay for penicillin binding protein 2′ (Denka Seiken Co., Tokyo, Japan), and mecA PCR. The sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive values of the BD GeneOhm StaphSR assay for MSSA detection were 98.9, 96.7, 93.6, and 99.5%, respectively. For the detection of MRSA, the BD GeneOhm StaphSR assay was 100% sensitive and 98.4% specific; positive and negative predictive values for MRSA detection were 92.6 and 100%, respectively. Inhibition was seen with only one sample, and the issue was resolved upon retesting. The BD GeneOhm StaphSR assay appears to be a valuable diagnostic tool for quickly differentiating bacteremia caused by MSSA and MRSA from that caused by other gram-positive cocci.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2191-2196
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of clinical microbiology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2007


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)

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