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Evaluation of genotypic and phenotypic methods for differentiation of the members of the Anginosus group streptococci

  • Author(s): Summanen, P. H.
  • Rowlinson, M.-C.
  • Wooton, J.
  • Finegold, S. M.
  • et al.
Abstract

The terminology and classification of the Anginosus group streptococci has been inconsistent. We tested the utility of 16S rRNA gene and tuf gene sequencing and conventional biochemical tests for the reliable differentiation of the Anginosus group streptococci. Biochemical testing included Rapid ID 32 Strep, API Strep, Fluo-Card Milleri, Wee-tabs, and Lancefield antigen typing. Altogether, 61 Anginosus group isolates from skin and soft tissue infections and four reference strains were included. Our results showed a good agreement between 16S rRNA gene and tuf gene sequencing. Using the full sequence was less discriminatory than using the first part of the 16S rRNA gene. The three species could not be separated with the API 20 Strep test. Streptococcus intermedius could be differentiated from the other two species by β-galactosidase (ONPG) and β-N-acetyl-glucosaminidase reactions. Rapid ID 32 Strep β-glucosidase reaction was useful in separating S. anginosus strains from S. constellatus. In conclusion, both 16S rRNA gene and tuf gene sequencing can be used for the reliable identification of the Anginosus group streptococci. S. intermedius can be readily differentiated from the other two species by phenotypic tests; however, 16S rRNA gene or tuf gene sequencing may be needed for separating some strains of S. constellatus from S. anginosus.

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