Microbial Identification for Clinical Laboratories (IVD-CE)

MBT STAR®-Carba IVD Assay

Rapid microorganism identification and detection of carbapenemase activity in one workflow

MBT STAR®-Carba IVD Assay

The MBT STAR®-Carba IVD Kit (STAR – Selective Testing of Antibiotic Resistance) in conjunction with the MBT STAR®-BL IVD software allows rapid microorganism identification and detection of carbapenemase activity in one workflow.


The MBT STAR®-Carba IVD Kit is the first mass spectrometric resistance detection assay, expanding the application of the IVD-CE MALDI Biotyper® MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry system in clinical microbiology beyond the identification of microorganisms.

To counteract the rise of multidrug-resistant bacteria, Bruker is dedicated to developing new solutions to keep pace. The rapid identification and determination of resistance is a crucial basis for clinicians and physicians to provide their patients with the antibiotic that promises rapid, gentle and appropriate treatment, as fast as possible.

Antimicrobial resistance – a major healthcare threat

Unnecessary prescription of antibiotics, treatment of diseases with broad-spectrum antibiotics and the excessive use of antibiotics in agriculture lead to the emergence of multi-resistant bacteria. 

Only a few last resort antibiotics remain effective against resistant bacteria, of which carbapenems are of highest importance. Carbapenems are effective against gram-positive, gram-negative and anaerobic bacteria, but can be deactivated by bacterial carbapenemase enzymes. To avoid the further spread of these carbapenemase-producing bacteria in hospitals, fast and cost-effective methods for detection of bacteria with active carbapenemases are in high demand.

A fast and simple workflow

The MBT STAR®-Carba IVD Kit utilizes a benchmark carbapenem antibiotic. Bacteria from overnight cultures or isolated from positive blood cultures are incubated in the antibiotic solution. Bacteria with active carbapenemase will inactivate the carbapenem antibiotic by hydrolysation of the ß-lactam ring, which is associated with a detectable mass shift.

In assays with bacteria without active carbapenemase, only peaks corresponding to the intact antibiotic will be present in the mass spectrum. In assays with bacteria with active carbapenemase, peaks of the intact antibiotic will decrease. The intensity ratio of hydrolysed to intact antibiotic signals indicates the level of carbapenemase activity. 

The MBT STAR®-BL IVD Software Module monitors this activity on acquired mass spectra of aliquots of the co-incubation solution (incubation for 30/60 minutes), by automatic calculation of the intact antibiotics´ intensity and corresponding ratio hydrolysed / non-hydrolysed. Results are normalized to signal intensities from positive and negative control strains and displayed as a color-coded plot.

Benefits to patients

The MBT STAR®-Carba IVD assay is designed for rapid detection of prevalent Class A, B or D carbapenemase activity in gram-negative Enterobacteriaceae, Pseudomonas spp. and Acinetobacter spp. It can be used for microorganisms derived from culture plates, and for microorganisms isolated from positive blood cultures using the MBT Sepsityper® IVD Kit. The assay allows microbiologists to rapidly identify bacteria and their carbapenemase activity on the MALDI Biotyper® IVD platform in one workflow.


Please contact your local representative for availability in your country.

Not for sale in the USA.