A comprehensive molecular testing method assessing multiple bacterial and viral pathogens improved detection in patients with suspected community-acquired pneumonia and may reduce broad-spectrum antibiotic use, according to findings published in Clinical Infectious Diseases.

Current multiplex real-time PCR assays screen a wide range of viral and atypical bacterial pathogens; however, a similar approach has not been developed for typical bacterial pathogens.

In response, Gadsby and colleagues developed an assay capable of measuring bacterial loads of eight typical bacterial pathogens from a single lower respiratory tract (LRT) specimen.

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