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PLoS One. 2018 Jan 16;13(1):e0191042. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0191042. eCollection 2018.

Comparative genomics identifies distinct lineages of S. Enteritidis from Queensland, Australia.

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Public Health Microbiology, Forensic and Scientific Services, Queensland Department of Health, Coopers Plains, Queensland, Australia.


Salmonella enterica is a major cause of gastroenteritis and foodborne illness in Australia where notification rates in the state of Queensland are the highest in the country. S. Enteritidis is among the five most common serotypes reported in Queensland and it is a priority for epidemiological surveillance due to concerns regarding its emergence in Australia. Using whole genome sequencing, we have analysed the genomic epidemiology of 217 S. Enteritidis isolates from Queensland, and observed that they fall into three distinct clades, which we have differentiated as Clades A, B and C. Phage types and MLST sequence types differed between the clades and comparative genomic analysis has shown that each has a unique profile of prophage and genomic islands. Several of the phage regions present in the S. Enteritidis reference strain P125109 were absent in Clades A and C, and these clades also had difference in the presence of pathogenicity islands, containing complete SPI-6 and SPI-19 regions, while P125109 does not. Antimicrobial resistance markers were found in 39 isolates, all but one of which belonged to Clade B. Phylogenetic analysis of the Queensland isolates in the context of 170 international strains showed that Queensland Clade B isolates group together with the previously identified global clade, while the other two clades are distinct and appear largely restricted to Australia. Locally sourced environmental isolates included in this analysis all belonged to Clades A and C, which is consistent with the theory that these clades are a source of locally acquired infection, while Clade B isolates are mostly travel related.

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