To develop and evaluate multiplex PCR assays for Chlamydia trachomatis and Neisseria gonorrhoeae, using real-time and conventional PCR detection methodologies.
Two real-time multiplex PCR assays, using nuclease (TaqMan-AB17500) and hybridisation (LightCycler) probe formats, and a third assay using conventional PCR with solid-phase hybridisation and colour detection, were developed. The porA pseudogene was targeted for N. gonorrhoeae, and the major outer membrane protein gene for C. trachomatis. A total of 145 urogenital specimens were tested in all assays, and the results were compared with the Roche Cobas Amplicor assay.
There was little difference in clinical sensitivity and specificity, result discrimination and test cost for the three in-house assays. Our results showed that competitive inhibition of the PCR occurred in some samples that were positive for both organisms.
These results highlight the suitability and versatility of three multiplex PCR methods for the detection of C. trachomatis and N. gonorrhoeae.