We analyzed blood cultures using the BD BACTEC™ FX instrument (Becton Dickinson). Cardiac valves, bone samples and abscesses were ground in brain heart infusion broth. We used a published sonication protocol [19]. Samples were cultivated using standard media after Gram-stained standard identifications. According to the sample type, the cultures were incubated under both aerobic (35 °C for Columbia agar + 5% sheep blood and Drigalski, 35 °C in 5% CO2 for chocolate agar) and anaerobic conditions (Schaedler agar + 5% sheep blood and thioglycolate broth). Joint fluids, bone samples and sonication fluids were also incubated in BD BACTEC™ Peds Plus™ vials, as described [20]. Bacteria were usually identified with MALDI-TOF MS [21] using the Microflex LT coupled to the MALDI Biotyper algorithm (Bruker) as described [22].

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