The ultimate aim of this research project is the development of a diagnostic DNA-microarray to identify Enterococcus isolates and, at the same time, to detect the presence of antibiotic resistance and virulence genes related to this genus. The work is structured in the following six phases:
collection and characterization of enterococcal strains to employ as control samples during microarray probes validation experiments;
sequences dataset assembling and probes design;
setting up of an E. faecalis microarray model: discovering empirical criteria to improve probes efficiency and to test experimental protocols, such as DNA extraction, labelling and purification;
partial results evaluation and probe set improvement;
production of a microarray device composed by the complete Enterococcus probe set and its subsequent validation;
pre-industrial tests such as evaluation of stability, safety and moderateness of the used reagents in comparison to different commercial kit.