Volume 89, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



Leptospirosis may be caused by > 250 serovars. Serovar classification is a complex task that most laboratories cannot perform. We assessed the interlaboratory reproducibility of a pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) identification technique developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Blinded exchange of 93 Leptospiraceae strains occurred between San Antonio Military Medical Center (SAMMC) and the CDC. PFGE was performed and gel images were analyzed and compared with patterns present in each laboratory's database (CDC database: > 800 strain patterns; SAMMC database: > 300 strain patterns). Overall, 93.7% (74 of 79) of strains present in each receiving laboratory's database were correctly identified. Five isolates were misidentified, and two isolates did not match serovar PFGE patterns in the receiving laboratory's database. Patterns for these seven isolates were identical between laboratories; four serovars represented misidentified reference strains. The PFGE methodology studied showed excellent interlaboratory reproducibility, enabling standardization and data sharing between laboratories.


Article metrics loading...

The graphs shown below represent data from March 2017
Loading full text...

Full text loading...



  1. Machry L, Ribeiro RL, Vital-Brazil JM, Balassiano IT, de Oliveira ICM, Avelar KES, Pereira MM, 2010. Characterization of Leptospira spp. reference strains using the pulsed-field gel electrophoresis technique. Rev Soc Bras Med Trop 43: 166169.[Crossref]
    [Google Scholar]
  2. Galloway RL, Levett PN, 2008. Evaluation of a modified pulsed-field gel electrophoresis approach for the identification of Leptospira serovars. Am J Trop Med Hyg 78: 628632.
    [Google Scholar]
  3. Galloway RL, Levett PN, 2010. Application and validation of PFGE for serovar identification of Leptospira clinical isolates. PLoS Negl Trop Dis 4: e824.[Crossref]
    [Google Scholar]
  4. Herrmann JL, Bellenger E, Perolat P, Baranton G, Saint Girons I, 1992. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis of NotI digests of leptospiral DNA: a new rapid method of serovar identification. J Clin Microbiol 30: 16961702.
    [Google Scholar]
  5. Romero EC, Blanco RM, Galloway RL, 2009. Application of pulsed-field gel electrophoresis for the discrimination of leptospiral isolates in Brazil. Lett Appl Microbiol 48: 623627.[Crossref]
    [Google Scholar]
  6. Turk N, Milas Z, Mojcec V, Ruzic-Sabljic E, Staresina V, Stritof Z, Habus J, Postic D, 2009. Molecular analysis of Leptospira spp. isolated from humans by restriction fragment length polymorphism, real-time PCR and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis. FEMS Microbiol Lett 300: 174179.[Crossref]
    [Google Scholar]
  7. Villanueva SYAM, Ezoe H, Baterna RA, Yanagihara Y, Muto M, Koizumi N, Fukui T, Okamoto Y, Masuzawa T, Cavinta LL, Gloriani NG, Yoshida S, 2010. Serologic and molecular studies of Leptospira and leptospirosis among rats in the Philippines. Am J Trop Med Hyg 82: 889898.[Crossref]
    [Google Scholar]
  8. Cerqueira GM, McBride AJA, Queiroz A, Pinto LS, Silva EF, Hartskeerl RA, Reis MG, Ko AI, Dellagostin OA, 2010. Monitoring Leptospira strain collections: the need for quality control. Am J Trop Med Hyg 82: 8387.[Crossref]
    [Google Scholar]
  9. Leon A, Pronost S, Fortier G, Andre-Fontaine G, Leclercq R, 2010. Multilocus sequence analysis for typing Leptospira interrogans and Leptospira kirschneri . J Clin Microbiol 48: 581585.[Crossref]
    [Google Scholar]
  10. Naigowit P, Charoenchai S, Biaklang M, Seena U, Wangroongsarb P, Sawanpanyalert P, Warachit P, 2007. Identification of clinical isolates of Leptospira spp. by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis and microscopic agglutination test. Southeast Asian J Trop Med Public Health 38: 97103.
    [Google Scholar]

Data & Media loading...

  • Received : 19 Dec 2012
  • Accepted : 15 Apr 2013
  • Published online : 07 Aug 2013
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error