The identification of markers for virulent group B streptococci (GBS) could guide prenatal prevention and intervention strategies. We compared the distribution of serotypes and potential pathogenicity islands (PPIs) between invasive and colonizing GBS. Colonizing and invasive strains from The Netherlands and Taiwan were serotyped. We used polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the amplification of several new PPI markers. Several combinations of PPI-specific markers and serotypes were associated with invasiveness. For Dutch neonatal strains, a receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve with serotype and five PPI markers showed an area under the curve (AUC) of 0.963 (95% confidence interval [CI] 0.935-0.99). For Taiwanese neonatal strains, serotype and four different PPI markers resulted in an ROC curve with an AUC of 0.894 (95% CI 0.826-0.963). PPI-specific and serological markers can distinguish local neonatal invasive GBS strains from colonizing ones. Apparently, there are clear regional differences in the GBS epidemiology and infection potential of clones.

dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10096-009-0726-4, hdl.handle.net/1765/24196
European Journal of Clinical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases: an international journal on pathogenesis, diagnosis, epidemiology, therapy, and prevention of infectious diseases
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

van Elzakker, E, Yahiaoui, R.Y, Visser, C, Oostvogel, P.M, Muller, A.E, Ho, Y.R, … van Belkum, A.F. (2009). Epidemiology of and prenatal molecular distinction between invasive and colonizing group B streptococci in the Netherlands and Taiwan. European Journal of Clinical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases: an international journal on pathogenesis, diagnosis, epidemiology, therapy, and prevention of infectious diseases, 28(8), 921–928. doi:10.1007/s10096-009-0726-4