Nontuberculous mycobacteria in respiratory infections: advances in diagnosis and identification

Akos Somoskovi, Max Salfinger
Clinics in Laboratory Medicine 2014, 34 (2): 271-95
An urgent question that needs to be addressed rapidly by the mycobacteriology laboratory is whether Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex or NTM is involved. NAA assays are excellent tools for the purpose, and can be used directly on the clinical specimens of patients suspected of having mycobacterial disease, allowing same-day reporting of results. The CDC recommends using both liquid and solid media for growth detection of mycobacteria to decrease the time to detection and to increase the yield of growth detection. DNA sequencing of variable genomic regions offers a rapid, accurate, and relatively inexpensive method for the identification of mycobacteria.

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