Rapid detection of vancomycin-non-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus using the spiral gradient endpoint technique

Vijaya C. Doddangoudar, Margaret May O'Donoghue, Maureen V. Boost, Dominic N.C. Tsang, Peter C. Appelbaum

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: Several methods have been introduced for detection of vancomycin-non-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus [heterogeneous vancomycin-intermediate S. aureus (hVISA) and vancomycin-intermediate S. aureus (VISA)]. However, the limitations of these methods can delay appropriate therapy for the patient. This study evaluated the spiral gradient endpoint (SGE) technique for detection of hVISA/VISA. Methods: The SGE method was evaluated for intra-batch, inter-batch and inter-observer reproducibility in comparison with MICs determined by agar dilution. Three media, Mueller-Hinton agar, brain heart infusion agar and brain heart infusion agar with 5% glucose, were evaluated. The SGE method was compared with agar dilution for correlation of MIC and susceptibility category using control strains, clinical isolates and induced vancomycin-non-susceptible strains. Results: The SGE method had good reproducibility and there was excellent correlation of MICs generated by SGE using brain heart infusion agar with those by agar dilution (r2=0.950), with no difference in resistance categories generated by the two methods. All VISA isolates were correctly identified and the method allowed easy identification of hVISA by means of the trailing endpoint. Conclusions: SGE offers a simple, rapid and cost-effective alternative method for the detection of hVISA/VISA for the routine laboratory. Early recognition of vancomycin-non-susceptible strains can allow the change to appropriate antibiotics, resulting in potentially better patient outcomes.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberdkq340
Pages (from-to)2368-2372
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 16 Sep 2010


  • Exponential concentration gradient
  • hVISA
  • MIC
  • VISA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

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