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PLoS One. 2011;6(5):e20332. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0020332. Epub 2011 May 20.

Sequence diversities of serine-aspartate repeat genes among Staphylococcus aureus isolates from different hosts presumably by horizontal gene transfer.

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1
Department of Animal Science, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is recognized as one of the major forces for bacterial genome evolution. Many clinically important bacteria may acquire virulence factors and antibiotic resistance through HGT. The comparative genomic analysis has become an important tool for identifying HGT in emerging pathogens. In this study, the Serine-Aspartate Repeat (Sdr) family has been compared among different sources of Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) to discover sequence diversities within their genomes.

METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS:

Four sdr genes were analyzed for 21 different S. aureus strains and 218 mastitis-associated S. aureus isolates from Canada. Comparative genomic analyses revealed that S. aureus strains from bovine mastitis (RF122 and mastitis isolates in this study), ovine mastitis (ED133), pig (ST398), chicken (ED98), and human methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) (TCH130, MRSA252, Mu3, Mu50, N315, 04-02981, JH1 and JH9) were highly associated with one another, presumably due to HGT. In addition, several types of insertion and deletion were found in sdr genes of many isolates. A new insertion sequence was found in mastitis isolates, which was presumably responsible for the HGT of sdrC gene among different strains. Moreover, the sdr genes could be used to type S. aureus. Regional difference of sdr genes distribution was also indicated among the tested S. aureus isolates. Finally, certain associations were found between sdr genes and subclinical or clinical mastitis isolates.

CONCLUSIONS:

Certain sdr gene sequences were shared in S. aureus strains and isolates from different species presumably due to HGT. Our results also suggest that the distributional assay of virulence factors should detect the full sequences or full functional regions of these factors. The traditional assay using short conserved regions may not be accurate or credible. These findings have important implications with regard to animal husbandry practices that may inadvertently enhance the contact of human and animal bacterial pathogens.

PMID:
21625460
PMCID:
PMC3098876
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0020332
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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