Detection of Streptococcus agalactiae by immunochromatography with group B streptococcus-specific surface immunogenic protein in pregnant women.
Group B Streptococcus (GBS; Streptococcus agalactiae) is a leading cause of serious neonatal infections. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends GBS screening for all pregnant women during the 35th to 37th weeks of gestation. Although GBS screening has been performed mainly by the culture-based method, it takes several days to obtain a reliable result. In this study, we developed a rapid immunochromatographic test (ICT) for the detection of GBS-specific surface immunogenic protein in 15 min using an overnight enrichment culture. The ICT was prepared using two anti-Sip monoclonal antibodies. This ICT was able to detect recombinant Sip levels of 0.5 ng/ml, or about 10(6) CFU/ml of GBS cells, in tests with 9 GBS strains of different serotypes. The cross-reactivity test using 26 species of microorganism showed no detectable false-positive result. Reactivity of the ICT with 229 GBS strains showed one false-negative result that was attributable to the production of truncated Sip. Among 260 enrichment cultures of vaginal swabs, 17 produced red to orange pigments in Granada medium, and they were all GBS and Sip positive. Among 219 pigment-negative cultures, 12 were GBS positive and 10 were Sip positive. Two Sip-negative cultures contained GBS cells below the limit of detection by the ICT. Among 207 GBS-negative cultures, only one was Sip positive, which was attributable to GBS cell debris. Thus, the sensitivity and specificity of the ICT appeared to be 93.1% and 99.6%, respectively. The newly developed ICT is readily applicable to clinical use in the detection of GBS.