A novel polymerase chain reaction assay to detect Mycoplasma genitalium

Mol Pathol. 2003 Feb;56(1):25-8. doi: 10.1136/mp.56.1.25.


Aims: To design and validate a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay targeting the 16S rRNA gene of Mycoplasma genitalium.

Methods: Primers were designed that were complementary to the 16S rRNA gene sequence of M genitalium. After optimisation of the reaction conditions, the PCR was tested against nine M genitalium strains, a dilution series of M genitalium DNA, and a panel of common microorganisms. The PCR was also challenged in parallel with a published assay against 54 urine specimens from men with urethritis.

Results: The expected 341 bp product was produced on amplification of material from all M genitalium strains and from none of the other microorganisms tested. The lower limit of detection was 50 genome copies. The new assay detected M genitalium DNA in nine of 54 men with urethritis, in comparison with eight positive specimens detected with the alternative PCR.

Conclusions: This novel PCR targeting the M genitalium 16S rRNA gene has been optimised and now provides a sensitive and specific alternative or addition to the available MgPa gene targeting assays.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Chlamydia trachomatis / isolation & purification
  • DNA, Bacterial / analysis
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mycoplasma / isolation & purification*
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction / methods*
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 16S / analysis
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Urethritis / microbiology
  • Urethritis / urine


  • DNA, Bacterial
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 16S