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Susceptibility testing of Neisseria gonorrhoeae to penicillin and spectinomycin in a diagnostic laboratory.
  1. M J Gill,
  2. C A Ison
  1. Department of Medical Microbiology, Wright-Fleming Institute, St Mary's Hospital Medical School, London.


    Agar dilution breakpoint susceptibility testing using GC, DST, and proteose agars, was performed on consecutive clinical isolates of non-penicillinase producing Neisseria gonorrhoeae to examine the feasibility of using such a system in a diagnostic laboratory. The incidence and level of resistance to penicillin and spectinomycin was also assessed. On DST medium 93 of 200 (46.5%) of isolates were of intermediate resistance to penicillin (MIC 0.12-0.5 mg/l) and 21 of 200 (10.5%) were resistant to penicillin (MIC greater than or equal to 1.0 mg/l). Ninety two of 200 (46%) of isolates had an MIC to spectinomycin of 32 mg/l on DST agar. Isolates seemed to be more resistant when tested on the two other media. The methods used in this study could be applied in a routine diagnostic laboratory for immediate clinical benefit and long term epidemiological studies. To enable direct comparisons to be made between populations at different centres, however, methods for gonococcal susceptibility testing need to be standardised.

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