Microbiology Time

In this December’s Microbiology Time, here’s a little present for you: the top three studies of the month! Enjoy the reading, and best wishes for a very merry Christmas!

  • The first study evaluates the efficiency of different swab types to collect evidence (saliva) from denim, cotton, and polyester for body fluid identification, DNA isolation, and DNA characterization. The study’s results are clear: overall, cotton swabs perform worse than 4N6FLOQSwabs. This is another piece of evidence confirming the previous research on the influence of swab types in DNA isolation and characterization, a crucial step to retrieving the appropriate evidence in forensic investigation.
  • It is well-reported that reproductive tract dysbiosis reduces fertility and pregnancy outcomes. The endometrial microbiome is of particular interest, given its potential impact on embryo implantation. In this second study, Robin Vanstokstraeten and colleagues demonstrate the applicability of culturomics, a high-throughput culturing approach, to investigate the endometrial bacterial population in biopsies from 10 subfertile women. The researchers – taking advantage of WASPLab®-assisted processing to standardize the methodology – analyzed the samples with mass spectrometry and identified 83 bacterial and 2 fungal species. Of note, 53 (62.4%) of the identified species were described in the endometrial microbiota for the first time, highlighting the added value of culturomics.
  • In the last paper, an epidemiological outbreak investigation was performed in a children’s hospital, after MRSA infections among children attending primary and secondary school nearly doubled in 2018 compared to previous years. Phenotypic and genotypic characterization of the isolates was performed, and a cross-sectional study was conducted to determine the outbreak’s source. 49 individuals were detected with 57 corresponding isolates, and a core cluster sharing common genetic features and a similar antimicrobial susceptibility pattern was identified. Although the epidemiologic evaluation identified a distinct school as a common risk factor, the source of the clustered infections within that school could not be further specified.


Read the complete studies below: