A real-time PCR assay for the detection of Neisseria gonorrhoeae in genital and extragenital specimens

Diagn Microbiol Infect Dis. 2005 May;52(1):1-5. doi: 10.1016/j.diagmicrobio.2004.12.011.


A Neisseria gonorrhoeae LightCycler (NGpapLC) assay targeting the porA pseudogene was compared with bacterial culture for detection of N. gonorrhoeae in 636 clinical specimens (216 cervical, 185 urethral, 196 throat, and 39 rectal swab specimens). The specificity of the NGpapLC assay was further investigated by testing a bacterial reference panel comprising several Neisseria species. Overall, 19 (3.0%) specimens were positive and 613 (96.4%) specimens were negative by both methods. Four (0.6%) specimens were positive by the NGpapLC assay only. For the cervical and urethral swabs, the NGpapLC provided 100% sensitivity and 100% specificity compared with bacterial culture. Following discrepant analysis, the clinical sensitivity and specificity of the NGpapLC for throat and rectal swabs was also 100%. For the bacterial panel, only N. gonorrhoeae isolates provided positive results. The results show the NGpapLC assay is suitable for use on a range of clinical specimens and could improve detection of pharyngeal N. gonorrhoeae.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Culture Media
  • DNA, Bacterial / analysis
  • Female
  • Genitalia, Female / microbiology*
  • Genitalia, Male / microbiology*
  • Gonorrhea / diagnosis
  • Gonorrhea / microbiology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Neisseria gonorrhoeae / classification
  • Neisseria gonorrhoeae / genetics
  • Neisseria gonorrhoeae / isolation & purification*
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction / methods*
  • Porins / genetics
  • Pseudogenes
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • Culture Media
  • DNA, Bacterial
  • Porins
  • porin protein, Neisseria