Clinical Microbiology and Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. 2000; 2(1):60-68
Pathogens causing “atypical pneumonias” – mycoplasmas, legionellae, clamydiae, coxiellae play significant role in human infections. In spite of considerable differences in biology, epidemiology and clinical presentations these pathogens can be grouped because of resistance to penicillins and other beta-lactams and similar approaches to laboratory diagnosis. For the time been immunological and molecular methods are the most important for the diagnosis of atypical pneumonia. But because of possible asymptomatic carriage and persistence it is very important to correctly interprete the results obtained with these methods. The further improvement of laboratory diagnosis of “atypical pneumonia” is based on establishment of new specific anti-genic and nucleotide markers; reduction of diagnosis time, increase of sensitivity and specificity and decrease of cost.