Genomic characterization of the emerging pathogen Streptococcus pseudopneumoniae
Simões, Alexandra S.
De Lencastre, Herminia
Date of Issue2019
Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine (LKCMedicine)
Singapore Centre for Environmental Life Sciences and Engineering
Streptococcus pseudopneumoniae is a close relative of the major human pathogen S. pneumoniae. It is increasingly associated with lower-respiratory-tract infections (LRTI) and a high prevalence of antimicrobial resistance (AMR). S. pseudopneumoniae is difficult to identify using traditional typing methods due to similarities with S. pneumoniae and other members of the mitis group (SMG). Using whole-genome sequencing of LRTI isolates and a comparative genomic approach, we found that a large number of pneumococcal virulence and colonization genes are present in the core S. pseudopneumoniae genome. We also reveal an impressive number of novel surface-exposed proteins encoded by the genome of this species. In addition, we propose a new and entirely specific molecular marker useful for the identification of S. pseudopneumoniae. Phylogenetic analyses of S. pseudopneumoniae show that specific clades are associated with allelic variants of core proteins. Resistance to tetracycline and macrolides, the two most common types of resistance, were found to be encoded by Tn916-like integrating conjugative elements and Mega-2. Overall, we found a tight association of genotypic determinants of AMR and phenotypic AMR with a specific lineage of S. pseudopneumoniae. Taken together, our results shed light on the distribution in S. pseudopneumoniae of genes known to be important during invasive disease and colonization and provide insight into features that could contribute to virulence, colonization, and adaptation.
© 2019 Garriss et al. This is an openaccess article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license.