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J Bacteriol. 2009 Mar;191(5):1480-9. doi: 10.1128/JB.01343-08. Epub 2008 Dec 29.

Role of conjugative elements in the evolution of the multidrug-resistant pandemic clone Streptococcus pneumoniaeSpain23F ST81.

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  • 1Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, Hinxton, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom. nc3@sanger.ac.uk

Abstract

Streptococcus pneumoniae is a human commensal and pathogen able to cause a variety of diseases that annually result in over a million deaths worldwide. The S. pneumoniae(Spain23F) sequence type 81 lineage was among the first recognized pandemic clones and was responsible for almost 40% of penicillin-resistant pneumococcal infections in the United States in the late 1990s. Analysis of the chromosome sequence of a representative strain, and comparison with other available genomes, indicates roles for integrative and conjugative elements in the evolution of pneumococci and, more particularly, the emergence of the multidrug-resistant Spain 23F ST81 lineage. A number of recently acquired loci within the chromosome appear to encode proteins involved in the production of, or immunity to, antimicrobial compounds, which may contribute to the proficiency of this strain at nasopharyngeal colonization. However, further sequencing of other pandemic clones will be required to establish whether there are any general attributes shared by these strains that are responsible for their international success.

PMID:
19114491
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2648205
Free PMC Article

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