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16S rDNA PCR analysis of infectious keratitis: a case series

Journal article
Authors Thiemo Rudolph
Christina Welinder-Olsson
Lena Lind-Brandberg
Ulf Stenevi
Published in Acta Ophthalmologica Scandinavica
Volume 82
Issue 4
Pages 463-467
ISSN ISSN: 1395-3907
Publication year 2004
Published at Institute of Clinical Neurosciences, Section of Ophtalmology
Institute of Laboratory Medicine, Dept of Clinical Bacteriology
Pages 463-467
Language en
Keywords infectious keratitis – polymerase chain reaction (PCR) – 16S ribosomal deoxyribonucleic
Subject categories Medical and Health Sciences


ABSTRACT. Purpose: To discuss the value of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in the management of bacterial infectious keratitis. Methods: Corneal scrapings of four patients with severe infectious keratitis were analysed by culture and PCR of 16S ribosomal DNA (rDNA), followed by direct sequencing of the resulting amplicon. The medical history of the patients included laser-assisted in-situ keratomileusis (LASIK), penetrating keratoplasty (PKP) and trauma. Results: Using PCR we were able to identify a possible pathogen in all four cases, while bacterial cultures were either negative or did not correspond to the clinical picture. The identified bacteria were a Pseudomonas species, Abiotrophia defectiva, Stenotrophomonas maltophilia and Porphyromonas gingivalis. Conclusions: Analysis of corneal scrapings by 16S rDNA PCR should be considered as a supplement to standard microbiological procedures. However, the results of this relatively new method have to be interpreted carefully.

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