Background: Tuberculosis accounted for 8.7 million new cases in 2011 and continues to be one of the leading human infectious diseases. Burdensome is the increasing rate of multi-drug resistant tuberculosis (MDRTB) and the difficulties created for treatment and public health control programs, especially in developing countries. Resistance to rifampicin (RIF), a first line antibiotic, is commonly associated with point mutations within the rpoB gene of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) whose detection is considered the best early molecular predictor for MDRTB. Gold nanoparticles functionalized with thiol-modified oligonucleotides (Au-nanoprobes) have shown the potential to provide a rapid and sensitive detection method for Mtb and single base alterations associated with antibiotic resistance, namely in rpoB gene associated to RIF resistance.Results: We developed a strategy based on the isothermal amplification of sample DNA (LAMP) coupled to specific Au-nanoprobes capable of identifying members of the Mtb complex (MTBC) and discriminating specific mutations within the rpoB gene. Integration of LAMP and Au-nanoprobe assay allowed to detect MTBC member and identify mutations linked to RIF resistance. A total of 12 biological samples were tested and a 100% specificity and sensitivity was attained.Conclusions: There is an increasing demand for simple, fast and cheap methods for the molecular identification of Mtb and for the detection of molecular tags associated to drug resistance suitable for use at point-of-need. Here we describe such a method, that as the potential to get molecular diagnostic of tuberculosis to remote environments.
- DNA isothermal amplification
- Gold nanoparticles