DNA microarray-based detection and identification of fungal pathogens in clinical samples from neutropenic patients

J Clin Microbiol. 2007 Nov;45(11):3743-53. doi: 10.1128/JCM.00942-07. Epub 2007 Aug 22.


The increasing incidence of invasive fungal infections (IFI) in immunocompromised patients emphasizes the need to improve diagnostic tools. We established a DNA microarray to detect and identify DNA from 14 fungal pathogens (Aspergillus fumigatus, Aspergillus flavus, Aspergillus terreus, Candida albicans, Candida dubliniensis, Candida glabrata, Candida lusitaniae, Candida tropicalis, Fusarium oxysporum, Fusarium solani, Mucor racemosus, Rhizopus microsporus, Scedosporium prolificans, and Trichosporon asahii) in blood, bronchoalveolar lavage, and tissue samples from high-risk patients. The assay combines multiplex PCR and consecutive DNA microarray hybridization. PCR primers and capture probes were derived from unique sequences of the 18S, 5.8S, and internal transcribed spacer 1 regions of the fungal rRNA genes. Hybridization with genomic DNA of fungal species resulted in species-specific hybridization patterns. By testing clinical samples from 46 neutropenic patients with proven, probable, or possible IFI or without IFI, we detected A. flavus, A. fumigatus, C. albicans, C. dubliniensis, C. glabrata, F. oxysporum, F. solani, R. microsporus, S. prolificans, and T. asahii. For 22 of 22 patients (5 without IFI and 17 with possible IFI), negative diagnostic results corresponded with negative microarray data. For 11 patients with proven (n = 4), probable (n = 2), and possible IFI (n = 5), data for results positive by microarray were validated by other diagnostic findings. For 11 of 11 patients with possible IFI, the microarray results provided additional information. For two patients with proven and probable invasive aspergillosis, respectively, microarray results were negative. The assay detected genomic DNA from 14 fungal pathogens from the clinical samples, pointing to a high significance for improving the diagnosis of IFI.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Base Sequence
  • DNA, Ribosomal Spacer / genetics
  • Fungi / genetics
  • Fungi / isolation & purification*
  • Humans
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Neutropenia / microbiology*
  • Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis / methods*
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction


  • DNA, Ribosomal Spacer