Fast and reliable genotyping methods that allow real-time epidemiological surveillance would be instrumental to monitoring of the spread of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. We describe an automated variable-number tandem repeat-based method for the rapid genotyping of Staphylococcus aureus. Multiplex PCR amplifications with eight primer pairs that target gene regions with variable numbers of tandem repeats were resolved by microcapillary electrophoresis and automatically assessed by cluster analysis. This genotyping technique was evaluated for its discriminatory power and reproducibility with clinical isolates of various origins, including a panel of control strains previously characterized by several typing methods and collections from either long-term carriers or defined nosocomial outbreaks. All steps of this new procedure were developed to ensure a rapid turnaround time and moderate cost. The results obtained suggest that this rapid approach is a valuable tool for the genotyping of S. aureus isolates in real time. Copyright,
Journal of Clinical Microbiology
Department of Medical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases

Francois, P., Huyghe, A., Charbonnier, Y., Bento, M., Herzig, S., Topolski, I., … Schrenzel, J. (2005). Use of an automated multiple-locus, variable-number tandem repeat-based method for rapid and high-throughput genotyping of Staphylococcus aureus isolates. Journal of Clinical Microbiology, 43(7), 3346–3355. doi:10.1128/JCM.43.7.3346-3355.2005