Indian Journal of Medical Microbiology IAMM  | About us |  Subscription |  e-Alerts  | Feedback |  Login   
  Print this page Email this page   Small font sizeDefault font sizeIncrease font size
 Home | Ahead of Print | Current Issue | Archives | Search | Instructions  
Users Online: 929 Official Publication of Indian Association of Medical Microbiologists 
 ~ Next article
 ~ Previous article 
 ~ Table of Contents
 ~  Similar in PUBMED
 ~  Search Pubmed for
 ~  Search in Google Scholar for
 ~  Article in PDF (116 KB)
 ~  Citation Manager
 ~  Access Statistics
 ~  Reader Comments
 ~  Email Alert *
 ~  Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)  

 ~  Acknowledgment
 ~  References
 ~  Article Tables

 Article Access Statistics
    PDF Downloaded272    
    Comments [Add]    

Recommend this journal


Year : 2009  |  Volume : 27  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 374-375

Pilot evaluation of commercial liquid culture method for isolation of mycobacteria in resource-poor settings

Department of Microbiology, SRL Ranbaxy Ltd., Mumbai - 400 059, India

Date of Submission21-Nov-2008
Date of Acceptance08-Apr-2009
Date of Web Publication4-Sep-2009

Correspondence Address:
V Nerurkar
Department of Microbiology, SRL Ranbaxy Ltd., Mumbai - 400 059
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0255-0857.55453

Rights and Permissions

How to cite this article:
Sharma R K, Rajput K P, Kothari N D, Nerurkar V, Malvankar S S. Pilot evaluation of commercial liquid culture method for isolation of mycobacteria in resource-poor settings. Indian J Med Microbiol 2009;27:374-5

How to cite this URL:
Sharma R K, Rajput K P, Kothari N D, Nerurkar V, Malvankar S S. Pilot evaluation of commercial liquid culture method for isolation of mycobacteria in resource-poor settings. Indian J Med Microbiol [serial online] 2009 [cited 2020 Dec 4];27:374-5. Available from:

Dear Editor,

High infrastructural costs and lack of trained manpower make setting up of automated mycobacterial culture facilities difficult. Amongst those offering culture, great disparity exists in techniques used. Though a few reference laboratories and hospitals offer automated rapid culture technology, the high cost prevents their widespread use. A vast majority of mycobacteriology laboratories continue to use the conventional Lowenstein-Jensen (LJ) media. Though the LJ media is highly specific for mycobacteria, the long time taken for growth delays diagnosis and hampers initiation of early treatment. [1],[2] Evaluating cheaper and rapid culture methods is, thus, vital in tuberculosis control and management. [3] We undertook a pilot study to compare mycobacterial recovery rates and detection time of the Bio FM culture medium (M/s Bio-Rad Ltd), the mycobacteria growth indicator tube (MGIT) 960 system (M/s BD Ltd.) and LJ medium(M/s EOS labs, Mumbai, India). The Bio FM medium, a Middlebrook 7H9 medium with OADC (Oleic Acid - Albumin Fraction V, Bovine -Dextrose - Catalase (beef) - Sodium Chloride) and VCA (Vancomycin - Colistin - Amphotericin B) supplements, contains a chromogenic indicator that changes to dark blue/violet in response to mycobacterial growth. A total of 20 sputum specimens with known smear findings were included, four specimens from each category (negative, scanty, 1+, 2+ and 3+) of smear grading (Revised National Tuberculosis Control Programme). Specimen digestion and decontamination was done by the NaOH (Sodium Hydroxide) -NALC (N-acetyl-L-cysteine) method, followed by centrifugation for 20 minutes at 3000 revolutions/minute. 0.5 ml of each concentrate was added into the 3 media. MGIT vials were monitored by the MGIT 960 system while the Bio FM and LJ media were examined upto 42 days and 56 days respectively for mycobacterial growth. Isolates were identified by P-nitro-a- acetylaminob-hydroxypropiophenone (NAP) testing. 17 of the 20 specimens turned culture positive while three smear negative specimens remained culture negative. All isolates were identified as M. tuberculosis complex. Surprisingly, no discrepancy was seen in the recovery rates of the 3 media. The time to mycobacterial detection was shortest with MGIT and longest with LJ media [Table 1]. The detection time of BioFM was comparable with MGIT and outperformed the LJ media, similar to other international study findings. [4],[5]

Our pilot study, thus, indicates that BioFM media compares well with MGIT in terms of recovery rate and detection time, and detects mycobacterial growth much faster than the LJ medium. The Bio FM vial is about 30% cheaper than the MGIT vial and does not need any capital investment. Thus, it can be used in settings where cost and/or infrastructural limitations prohibit usage of fully automated systems. Also, its usage will facilitate reporting of TB cultures earlier than the conventional LJ method at a more reasonable cost to the patient, thereby improving overall patient management. Nevertheless, larger studies are recommended to evaluate the sensitivity, specificity and contamination rates of the medium, before putting to diagnostic use.

 ~ Acknowledgment Top

We thank M/s Biorad Ltd. for providing BioFM media for the pilot study.

 ~ References Top

1.Hanna BA, Ebrahimzadeh A, Elliott LB, Morgan MA, Novak SM, Rusch-Gerdes S, et al . Multicenter evaluation of the BACTEC MGIT 960 system for recovery of mycobacteria. J Clin Microbiol 1999;37:748-52.  Back to cited text no. 1    
2.Piersimoni C, Scarparo C, Cichero P, De Pezzo M, Covelli I, Gesu G, et al . Multicenter evaluation of the MB-Redox medium compared with radiometric BACTEC system, Mycobacteria Growth Indicator Tube (MGIT), and Löwenstein-Jensen medium for detection and recovery of acid-fast bacilli. Diagn Microbiol Infect Dis 1999;34:293-9.  Back to cited text no. 2    
3.Salfinger M, Hale Y M, Driscoll J R. Diagnostic Tools in Tuberculosis: Present and Future. Respiration 1998;65:163-70.  Back to cited text no. 3    
4.Herve V, Febre M, Hance P, Kerleguer A, Gerome P. Comparison of the performances of Bio FM and MGIT indicator liquid media with Lowenstein Jenson and Colestos solid media for isolation of Mycobacteria 2001;ESM Berlin:59  Back to cited text no. 4    
5.Ramarokoto H, Rasolonavalona T, Ratsimba L, Andrianasolo D, Ratsitorahina M, Rasolofo Razanamparany V. Evaluation of a rapid culture method on liquid Bio FM (BIO-RAD) medium for the isolation of mycobacteria. Int J Tuberc Lung Dis 2007;11:898-903.  Back to cited text no. 5    


  [Table 1]


Print this article  Email this article
Previous article Next article


2004 - Indian Journal of Medical Microbiology
Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow

Online since April 2001, new site since 1st August '04