Triazole resistance is an emerging problem in Aspergillus fumigatus (AF) resulting in failure of azole therapy. Triazole resistant AF is acquired through one of two routes – previous exposure to triazole therapy or an environmental source. In vitro antifungal susceptibility testing (AFST) on all AF strains isolated in a microbiology laboratory would be both labour intensive and impractical. A method to screen for triazole resistance would be more favourable. VIPcheck plates provide a simple agar based screening method. Each 4-well plate contains a growth control (GC) well and 3 wells containing itraconazole (4 mg l), voriconazole (2 mg l) and posaconazole (0.5 mg l). Briefly, 25 µl of a 0.5-2 McF suspension AF is inoculated into each well and plates are read after 48 h incubation at 37 °C. Any growth in a triazole containing well is suggestive of resistance. Currently in SJH, AFST is carried out using gradient strips (Liofilchem) and results are interpreted using EUCAST breakpoints. We validated the VIPcheck plates with the intention to include this screening method as part of our AFST for AF isolated from clinical samples. A total of 18 isolates (clinical and environmental) of AF were tested using the VIPcheck plates (n=2 wild type, n=18 resistant to ≥1 triazole drug as previously determined by AFST and/or molecular methods). The wild type isolates showed growth only in the GC well while the resistant strains all showed growth in one or more of the triazole containing wells. Our results suggest that the VIPcheck plate is a reliable screening method for triazole resistance.


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