Using BOX-PCR to exclude a clonal outbreak of melioidosis

Bart Currie, D Gal, Mark Mayo, Linda Ward, Daniel Godoy, Brian Spratt, John LiPuma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Although melioidosis in endemic regions is usually caused by a diverse range of Burkholderia pseudomallei strains, clonal outbreaks from contaminated potable water have been described. Furthermore B. pseudomallei is classified as a CDC Group B bioterrorism agent. Ribotyping, pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and multilocus sequence typing (MLST) have been used to identify genetically related B. pseudomallei isolates, but they are time consuming and technically challenging for many laboratories. Methods: We have adapted repetitive sequence typing using a BOX A1R primer for typing B. pseudomallei and compared BOX-PCR fingerprinting results on a wide range of well-characterized B. pseudomallei isolates with MLST and PFGE performed on the same isolates. Results: BOX-PCR typing compared favourably with MLST and PFGE performed on the same isolates, both discriminating between the majority of multilocus sequence types and showing relatedness between epidemiologically linked isolates from various outbreak clusters. Conclusion: Our results suggest that BOX-PCR can be used to exclude a clonal outbreak of melioidosis within 10 hours of receiving the bacterial strains. � 2007 Currie et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)68-
JournalBMC Infectious Diseases
Publication statusPublished - 2007


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