Two different approaches are described for rapid detection of intestinal carriage of Klebsiella pneumoniae producing KPC-type carbapenemase (KPC-KP), based on PCR amplification of DNA extracts from rectal swabs (K-PCR), and on direct plating of rectal swabs on to MacConkey agar with a meropenem disc and a meropenem plus 3-aminophenylboronic acid disc (direct KPC screening test, DKST). K-PCR and DKST were tested with a total of 101 samples from 65 patients, during an outbreak. Although less sensitive, DKST could detect high-level carriage, which appears to be common among infected and colonised patients, while being very cheap and easy to perform, and requiring only basic facilities.
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