, Volume 8, Issue 4, pp 353-359
Date: 31 Aug 2014

Current Status of Diagnosis of Mucormycosis: Update on Molecular Methods

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Abstract

The diagnosis of mucormycosis remains difficult. Clinical and radiological signs are not specific and therefore biological markers are of prime importance. The conventional diagnosis relies on the direct examination and culture of clinical samples followed by morphological identification of the causative agent. Nevertheless, direct examination may be difficult to interpret, cultures may be negative, and most of the Mucorales share common morphological characteristics rendering identification problematic. In recent years, several alternative approaches, mainly based on molecular methods, have been developed to overcome these difficulties. Major advances have been made in the molecular identification of isolates in culture and a consensus has been reached as to the best technique to use. Very interesting results have also been obtained in molecular diagnosis using clinical samples, with a variety of methodological approaches, but none of these techniques is completely standardized yet. Recent results show that detection of DNA in serum may also be feasible.