The results of DNA analysis of deletion in exons 7 and 8 of SMN gene, and exon 5 of NAIP gene in 24 SMA-families from Ukraine are presented. Deletions of SMN exons 7 and 8, or 7 were found in 46 (97.9%) of 47 SMA-chromosomes. A homozygous deletion of NAIP exon 5 was demonstrated in 4 (19%) of 21 SMA-families. The authors have demonstrated that in 2 SMA patients with homozygous deletion SMN exon 7 only, the remaining SMN exon 8 was a part of a chimeric CBCD41/SMN gene.
The present paper describes a novel modification of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the detection of Streptococcus pneumoniae DNA in clinical specimens. PCR was based on the detection of a 209-base pair segment of the S. pneumoniae pneumolysin gene. For the demonstration of the amplification product, microwell hybridization with a Europium-labelled oligonucleotide probe complementary to a biotinylated strand of the PCR product was performed, and the presence of the PCR product was monitored by time-resolved fluorescence (TRF) of the Europium chelate. The sensitivity of the assay for purified S. pneumoniae DNA was 50 fg DNA corresponding to 20 genome equivalents of S. pneumoniae DNA. The efficiency of the hybridization step was monitored by using known amounts of synthetic target oligonucleotides as standards. Sensitivity of 3 x 10(8) molecules per individual reaction well was achieved with a 30-min attachment time and a 3-h hybridization time.Detection of PCR-amplified products by the microwell hybridization technique and TRF was compared to agarose gel electrophoresis in 50 middle ear fluid samples obtained from children with acute otitis media. The agarose gel and TRF detection methods identified all culture-positive samples, but both were also positive for 55% of the culture-negative samples. The results suggest that the detection of amplified PCR products by microwell hybridization using Europium-labelled oligonucleotides is a reliable method for the demonstration of the pneumolysin gene fragment. Furthermore, the method is suitable for automation and, thus, for testing high numbers of samples. The clinical significance of the PCR findings remains to be studied.
Five grams of seafood products were inoculated with one to 500 viable or 10(9) heat-killed cells of Listeria monocytogenes. The presence of the pathogen was detected by the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) with primers specific for fragments of the listeriolysin O (hly) gene (two sets) and for the invasion-associated protein (iap) gene (one set). For DNA preparation, boiling, either alone or in combination with lysozyme and proteinase K treatment, was not always sufficient to lyse L. monocytogenes, while treatment with Triton X-100 produced consistently good DNA suitable for amplification. To avoid false-negative and false-positive results, 48 h incubations were necessary and a subculturing step after an initial 24 h incubation greatly improved the results. The primers that amplified regions of the listeriolysin O gene gave clearer and stronger products than primers for the invasion-associated protein gene. Using this method we were able to detect one to five L. monocytogenes cells in 5 g of product in a total of 55 h.