The BioFire® FilmArray® Meningitis/Encephalitis (ME) Panel

Time to diagnosis is critical.

Distinguishing bacterial from viral meningitis based on clinical presentation is challenging. Patients often present with similar, flu-like symptoms.1,2,3


The BioFire ME Panel tests for a comprehensive set of 14 of the most common bacterial, viral, and fungal pathogens associated with central nervous system (CNS) infections in 1 hour using only 0.2 mL of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF).4




Overall 94.2% Sensitivity and 99.8% Specificity
Sample Type: Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF)



● Escherichia coli K1
● Haemophilus influenzae
● Listeria monocytogenes
● Neisseria meningitidis
● Streptococcus agalactiae
● Streptococcus pneumoniae



● Cytomegalovirus (CMV)
● Enterovirus (EV)
● Herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1)
● Herpes simplex virus 2 (HSV-2)
● Human herpesvirus 6 (HHV-6)
● Human parechovirus (HPeV)
● Varicella zoster virus (VZV)



● Cryptococcus neoformans/gattii

The BioFire ME Panel Dramatically Improves Time to Diagnostic Results.5


IDSA GuidelinesA,B


  • CSF cultures may take >48 hours for organism
    identification and are positive in 70-85% of patients
    with bacterial meningitis who have not received prior
    antimicrobial therapy; therefore rapid diagnostic
    tests should be considered to determine the bacterial
    etiology of meningitis.
  • PCR may be useful for excluding the diagnosis of
    bacterial meningitis, with the potential for influencing
    decisions to initiate or discontinue antimicrobial therapy.
  • Rapid PCR detection of enterovirus may lead to shorter
    hospital stays and decreased use of antimicrobial


  • >10% of patients with viral encephalitis can have normal
    CSF findings. Additional CSF tests, such as PCR,
    should be performed to establish the specific cause of
  • Acyclovir should be initiated in all patients with
    suspected encephalitis.
  • In patients who have negative herpes simplex 1 and 2
    PCR results, do not modify treatment, repeat testing.

Every Minute Counts When
it Comes to Meningitis.

Decreasing time to result can help improve patient outcomes. Don’t lose another minute. Get results in one hour with the BioFire ME Panel.

“The FilmArray ME Panel represents a significant
paradigm shift. It is the first test system allowing
close-to-patient, rapid assessment of a broad
range of infectious agents associated with central
nervous system infections.”6

– Nationwide Children’s Hospital
Columbus, OH

Find ME Faster. Treat it Sooner.

While traditional meningitis tests take 24–48 hours, the BioFire Meningitis/Encephalitis (ME) Panel uses PCR technology to go from sample to results in about an hour.

One hour.

Add the BioFire ME Panel as a first line test and get answers in
a clinically-actionable time frame.

  • Simple: 2 minutes of hands-on time
  • Easy: No precise measuring or pipetting required
  • Fast: Turnaround time of about 1 hour
  • Comprehensive: 14 bacterial, viral, and fungal targets

Other Available BioFire® Panels


  2. (NINDS) NIoNDaS. 2015. Meningitis and Encephalitis Fact Sheet. Accessed January 21, 2015.
  3. Bamberger DM. 2010. Am Fam Physician 82:1491-1498
  4. BioFire Diagnostics. 2016. FilmArray meningitis/Encephalitis (ME) CE-IVD Instruction For Use. BioFire Diagnostics, LLC.
  5. Messacar K, et al. Potential clinical impact of the filmarray meningitis encephalitis panel in children with suspected central nervous system infections. Diagn Microbiol Infect Dis. 2016 Sep;86(1):118-20.
  6. Leber AL, et al. J of Clin Microb. September 2016. Vol 54 #9:2251-2261.
  7. Lyons TW, McAdam AJ, Cohn KA, Monuteausx MC, Nigrovic LE. 2012. Impact of in-hospital enteroviral polymerase chain reaction testing on the clinical management of children with meningitis. J Hosp Med 7:517-520
  8. CDC 24/7: Bacterial Meningitis. Last updated January 25, 2017. (cited 2017 Aug 30); (2 pages) Content source: National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. Available from:
  9. Holmquist L, Russo A, Elixhauser A. Statistical Brief #57 Meningitis-Related Hospitalizations in the United States, 2006. Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project. Agency for Health Care Research and Quality (USA). 2008
  10. Vora NM, Holman RC, Mehal JM, Steiner CA, Blanton J, Sejvar J. Burden of encephalitis-associated hospitalizations in the United States, 1998-2010. Neurology 2014. Feb 4;82(5):443-51


    • A. Tunkel AR, et al. Clin Infect Dis 2004: 39:1267-1284.
    • B. Tunkel AR, et al. Infectious Diseases Society of American. Clin Infect Dis 2008; 47:303-327.