Background: Infections due to Candida species are major causes of morbidity and mortality in humans, causing a diverse spectrum of clinical disease ranging from superficial and mucosal infections to invasive disease. Several authors have demonstrated that mortality is closely linked to both timing of therapy and/or source control. The rapid identification of pathogenic species is helpful to start timely and effective antifungal therapy. The aim of this study was to assess the performance of the matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) system for the correct and rapid identification of yeast isolates causing bloodstream infection.
Methods: Between January 2014 and January 2015, a total of 117 yeast like organisms isolated from blood culture samples of 117 episodes from 102 patients who had blood stream infections were included in the study. The isolates were identified by MALDI-TOF MS. The results were compared with those obtained by the standard mycological methods and/or sequence analysis.
Results: One hundred and seventeen yeast isolates including 115 Candida spp and two non-Candida yeasts were analysed. The Biotyper correctly identified 115 (98.3%) isolates to the genus level and 102 (87.2%) isolates to the species level using the manufacturer's recommended cutoff scores.
Conclusions: The Bruker Biotyper is a rapid, easy, inexpensive, and highly reliable system for the identification of yeast isolates. Early identification with MALDI-TOF MS would save time for determination of antifungal susceptibility and proper treatment strategy. The expansion of the database of the library by addition of less common species will improve the performance of the system.