C-187. The Site and Clinical Significance of Alloscardovia omnicolens and Bifidobacterium Species Routinely Isolated in the Clinical Lab

S. D. Mahlen1, J. E. Clarridge, III2;
1Univ. of Washington, Seattle, WA, 2VA Med. Ctr., Seattle, WA.

Background: There are currently more than 30 recognized species of the anaerobic or facultatively anaerobic genus Bifidobacterium; some species have recently been reclassified in different genera on the basis of 16S rRNA sequencing, including Alloscardovia omnicolens. Most of these organisms are said to be inhabitants of the gastrointestinal tract of humans and animals and have been considered nonpathogenic for humans. However, the actual site of isolation and the clinical significance of A. omnicolens and of Bifidobacterium species is unclear. Therefore, as a quality assurance measure and to determine the potential disease-causing role of these organisms, we analyzed the clinical significance of A. omnicolens and Bifidobacterium isolates from a large clinical laboratory. Method: All organisms in this study were isolated from sterile sites or in significant numbers using standard clinical microbiological culture methods. Routine testing (biochemical reagents, light microscopy and 16S rRNA sequencing) was utilized to identify isolates. Also, the specimen type, the probable source of the isolate, and associated disease were recorded for each isolate. Results: Four A. omnicolens, four Bifidobacterium scardovii, two B. longum, and four B. breve isolates were isolated and definitively identified by sequencing. All of the A. omnicolens isolates, one of the B. breve isolates, and two of the B. scardovii isolates were cultured from patients with suspected urinary tract infections at 105 CFU/ml, while the other two B. scardovii isolates were from patients with genitourinary tract wound infections. In addition, the two B. longum isolates were identified from abdominal wounds, and one B. breve isolate was identified from the blood of a patient with sepsis. Discussion: We identified 14 A. omnicolens and Bifidobacterium species isolates from clinical specimens. This study enlarges the spectrum of disease and clinical source associated with A. omnicolens and Bifidobacterium species. Thus, determining the correct identification of these bacteria enables the possibility to predict specific disease correlation with specific species.