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Epidemiological characterization of Neisseria gonorrhoeae by lectins


, : Epidemiological characterization of Neisseria gonorrhoeae by lectins. Journal of Clinical Microbiology 22(3): 379-382

A total of 101 isolates of penicillinase-producing and non-penicillinase-producing Neisseria gonorrhoeae with known nutritional requirements, plasmid content, and serovars, were examined for lectin agglutination patterns. These isolates were from outbreaks in Georgia, California, Hawaii, and Pennsylvania. Cell suspensions made from 16- to 18-h cultures were mixed with 14 different lectins, and the resultant agglutination patterns were classified as agglutination groups. Among the 101 isolates tested, 24 different agglutination groups were demonstrated. Of the organisms tested, 55% were located in 3 of the 24 groups, and 86% of the isolates reacted with the lectins Trichosanthes kinlowii, Griffonia simplicifolia I, peanut agglutinin, soybean agglutinin, potato agglutinin, and wheat germ agglutinin. One isolate did not react with peanut or potato agglutinin, five isolates lacked reactivity with potato agglutinin, and six isolates did not react with wheat germ agglutinin. Of the wheat germ-negative isolates, four were from Pennsylvania and were identical with regard to auxotype, plasmid content, serovar, and lectin group. The other two wheat germ-negative isolates were from California and were unrelated by the same criteria to the four Pennsylvania isolates and to each other. Among the isolates tested, there were no differences in lectin groups with regard to the sex of the patient. In the Georgia collection, agglutination with one lectin group was confined to isolates of serogroup IA. This association was not observed for the other geographic areas. Some isolates showing identical auxotype, plasmid content, and serovars could be differentiated based on lectin agglutination patterns, whereas other isolates were identical by all testing criteria.

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