Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are among the most common infections. Their clinical identification is difficult because STDs are often asymptomatic. Untreated infections with these pathogens can in time lead to serious consequences. It is documented that isolation of some of these bacteria from cultures is very difficult. Because there is a large number of STD pathogens which can generate coinfections, their simultaneous detection in a unique sample is very important. Multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is an advanced method of molecular biology which allows for simultaneous detection of multiple pathogens in the same sample. The advantages of the multiplex PCR method were assessed by various researchers by comparing the diagnosis results obtained with different other conventional methods. The sensitivity and specificity of these methods were analyzed on different specimens in comparison to traditional methods, such as culture media or direct microscopic examination. These studies demonstrated beyond any doubt that the multiplex PCR system is highly effective in the detection of each of multiple STD pathogens depicted from a single specimen and argued for multiplex PCR superiority in terms of sensitivity and rapidity.
Part of the book: Polymerase Chain Reaction for Biomedical Applications
Sexually transmitted diseases (STD) are among the most common infections worldwide. These bacterial infections have spread predominantly in the developing/underdeveloped countries, the most common being syphilis, gonorrhea and those induced by Chlamydia trachomatis, Ureaplasma urealyticum or Mycoplasma spp. Due to extensive usage of antibiotics in the recent past, these bacteria developed resistance to those commonly used for treatment, such resistant strains becoming a public health problem in a number of countries. It is well documented that bacterial STD agents are difficult to detect using standard culture media because these methods require special conditions and adequate nutrients. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing is, therefore, difficult to obtain in such cases. In recent years, genetic tests have been frequently employed in STD diagnosis. The study of genes that induce resistance to antibiotics using DNA isolated from these bacteria may prove to be a viable alternative. Genetic methods enable the DNA extraction from different biological samples, and both the presence of the bacteria and their resistance to one or more antibiotics can be determined from a single DNA sample. By studying the genes that induce antibiotic resistance and the plasmids that transfer such genes, the mechanism that leads to antibiotic resistance can be elucidated.
Part of the book: Antibacterial Agents