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BMC Microbiology

, 12:293

Microbial genetics, genomics and proteomics


BackgroundStreptococcus canis is an important opportunistic pathogen of dogs and cats that can also infect a wide range of additional mammals including cows where it can cause mastitis. It is also an emerging human pathogen.

ResultsHere we provide characterization of the first genome sequence for this species, strain FSL S3-227 milk isolate from a cow with an intra-mammary infection. A diverse array of putative virulence factors was encoded by the S. canis FSL S3-227 genome. Approximately 75% of these gene sequences were homologous to known Streptococcal virulence factors involved in invasion, evasion, and colonization. Present in the genome are multiple potentially mobile genetic elements MGEs plasmid, phage, integrative conjugative element ICE and comparison to other species provided convincing evidence for lateral gene transfer LGT between S. canis and two additional bovine mastitis causing pathogens Streptococcus agalactiae, and Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. dysgalactiae, with this transfer possibly contributing to host adaptation. Population structure among isolates obtained from Europe and USA bovine=56, canine=26, and feline=1 was explored. Ribotyping of all isolates and multi locus sequence typing MLST of a subset of the isolates n=45 detected significant differentiation between bovine and canine isolates Fisher exact test: P=0.0000 ribotypes, P=0.0030 sequence types, suggesting possible host adaptation of some genotypes. Concurrently, the ancestral clonal complex 54% of isolates occurred in many tissue types, all hosts, and all geographic locations suggesting the possibility of a wide and diverse niche.

ConclusionThis study provides evidence highlighting the importance of LGT in the evolution of the bacteria S. canis, specifically, its possible role in host adaptation and acquisition of virulence factors. Furthermore, recent LGT detected between S. canis and human bacteria Streptococcus urinalis is cause for concern, as it highlights the possibility for continued acquisition of human virulence factors for this emerging zoonotic pathogen.

KeywordsStreptococcus canisComparative genomicsPathogenZoonoticMastitisLateral gene transferHost adaptationBovineCanineElectronic supplementary materialThe online version of this article doi:10.1186-1471-2180-12-293 contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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Autor: VincentPRichards - RuthNZadoks - PaulinaDPavinski Bitar - TristanLefbure - PingLang - BrendaWerner - LindaTikofsky - PaoloMoroni -


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