Article Text

PDF
Molecular typing of Treponema pallidum strains from patients with neurosyphilis in Pretoria, South Africa
  1. J Molepo1,
  2. A Pillay2,
  3. B Weber1,
  4. S A Morse2,
  5. A A Hoosen1
  1. 1Department of Microbiological Pathology, Medunsa Campus, University of Limpopo, Pretoria, South Africa; National Health Laboratory Services, Microbiology Laboratory, Dr George Mukhari Hospital, GaRankuwa, Pretoria, South Africa
  2. 2Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA
  1. Correspondence to:
 Dr A Pillay
 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Division of STD Prevention, Laboratory Reference & Research Branch, 1600 Clifton Road, MS-G39, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA;apillay{at}cdc.gov

Abstract

Objective: To evaluate the molecular typing system for Treponema pallidum using cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) specimens obtained from patients with neurosyphilis in Pretoria, South Africa.

Methods: CSF specimens were collected from 32 men and 18 women with suspected late neurosyphilis. Typing of T pallidum involved PCR amplification and restriction analysis of the tprE, G and J genes and determination of the number of 60 base pair tandem repeats within the arp gene by PCR amplification.

Results: Of 13 typeable specimens, 4 strain types were identified: 2i, 3e, 14a and 17e. Subtype 14a was identified in 7 specimens (53.8%), subtype 3e in 4 specimens (30.7%) and subtypes 17e and 2i in 1 specimen (7.6%) each.

Conclusions: This study shows that the typing system can be applied to specimens which may contain low numbers of spirochaetes such as CSF.

  • bp, base pair
  • CSF, cerebrospinal fluid
  • FTA-ABS, fluorescent treponemal antibody absorption
  • RFLP, restriction fragment length polymorphism
  • STI, sexually transmitted disease
  • VDRL, Venereal Disease Research Laboratory

Statistics from Altmetric.com

Footnotes

  • Published Online First 23 January 2007

  • Competing interests: None.

  • The findings and conclusions in this report are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

    Contributors: JM was the PI for the study and the lead author for the paper; AH and BW contributed to the design of the study and supervised the project; AP edited and prepared the manuscript for submission and all authors contributed to the write up.

Request permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.