The routine use of matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) has revolutionized microorganism identification in the clinical microbiology laboratory. Building from these now common microorganism identification strategies, this review explores future clinical applications of MALDI-TOF MS. This includes practical approaches for laboratorians interested in implementing direct identification processing methods for MALDI-TOF detection of microbes in bloodstream infection (BSI) and urinary tract infection (UTI), as well as, post-analytical approaches for classifying MALDI-TOF spectral data to detect characteristics other and species-level identification (e.g. strain-level classification, typing, and resistance mechanisms).
Keywords: Antimicrobial susceptibility testing; Bacteremia; Bloodstream infection; Direct identification; MALDI-TOF; Machine learning; Mass spectrometry; Urinary tract infection.
Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.