Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 15885207
Med Sci (Paris) 2005 May;21(5):539-44
DNA-arrays are mainly known for their application in transcriptome analysis leading for instance to the discovery of new marker genes for diagnostics and prognostics in oncology. However, DNA arrays are also used for massively parallel analysis of DNA molecules allowing their quantification, the detection of single nucleotide polymorphisms and re-sequencing. This multi detection system is now applied to the problems of detecting and identifying bacteria in a biological sample and for the fine molecular characterization of a bacterial isolate. This new tool should serve for the diagnostic of an infection and for epidemiological studies such as those performed for the control of nosocomial infections or for the surveillance of bioterrorism attacks. DNA arrays carrying probes for 16S RNA specific of hundreds of bacterial species allow the identification of bacteria within a community by a single hybridization of amplified 16S rDNAs with universal primers and re-sequencing DNA arrays are used for multi locus sequence typing in a single step. Finally, the genome of an isolate could be characterized by DNA-arrays focused on a specific question like presence of toxin or antibiotic resistance genes. Up to now, DNA arrays are used in research laboratories for the rapid characterization at the genomic level of a strain collection, for evolutionary and population genetics studies and for the characterization of bacterial communities. Industrializing the process of DNA-array construction and hybridization is now needed in order to transfer this technology to hospitals and diagnostic laboratories.