Brief Communication

Ann Lab Med 2012; 32(5): 359-361

Published online September 1, 2012

Copyright © Korean Society for Laboratory Medicine.

Multiplex PCR for Rapid Detection of Genes Multiplex PCR for Rapid Detection of Genes Encoding Class A Carbapenemases

Sang Sook Hong, M.D.1, Kyeongmi Kim, M.D.1, Ji Young Huh, M.D.1, Bochan Jung, M.D.2, Myung Seo Kang, M.D.1,
and Seong Geun Hong, M.D.1

Department of Laboratory Medicine1, CHA Bundang Medical Center, CHA University, Seongnam; Department of Laboratory Medicine2, CHA Gumi Medical Center, CHA University, Gumi, Korea

Correspondence to: Seong Geun Hong
Department of Laboratory Medicine, CHA Bundang Medical Center, CHA University, 59 Yatap-ro, Bundang-gu, Seongnam 463-712, Korea
Tel: +82-31-780-5463
Fax: +82-31-780-5476

Received: January 26, 2012; Revised: May 21, 2012; Accepted: July 9, 2012

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In recent years, there have been increasing reports of KPC-producing Klebsiella pneumoniae in Korea. The modified Hodge test can be used as a phenotypic screening test for class A carbapenamase (CAC)-producing clinical isolates; however, it does not distinguish between carbapenemase types. The confirmation of type of CAC is important to ensure optimal therapy and to prevent transmission. This study applied a novel multiplex PCR assay to detect and differentiate CAC genes in a single reaction. Four primer pairs were designed to amplify fragments encoding 4 CAC families (SME, IMI/NMC-A, KPC, and GES). The multiplex PCR detected all genes tested for 4 CAC families that could be differentiated by fragment size according to gene type. This multiplex PCR offers a simple and useful approach for detecting and distinguishing CAC genes in carbapenem-resistant strains that are metallo-β-lactamase nonproducers.

Keywords: Carbapenemase, Multiplex PCR, KPC, GES