Development of an in situ culture-free screening test for the rapid detection of Staphylococcus aureus within healthcare environments
This article reports the development of a novel fluorometric indicator which shows a rapid response when exposed to coagulase positive Staphylococcus aureus (SA) bacteria (including methicillin sensitive Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA) and methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bacteria). The test is robust and will detect a wide variety of SA strains and there is no significant fluorescence response observed for other species of bacteria commonly found in clinical specimens, including other Staphylococcus bacteria. This research forms the basis of a prototype SA testing kit for the rapid detection of SA within hospital and healthcare environments as an economical prescreen or alternative to the current PCR based testing methodology. Rapid identification of SA carriers will allow hospital infection control teams to be pre-emptive and could significantly reduce the incidence of hospital acquired infections involving this organism.