Revealing Genomic Insights of the Unexplored Porcine Pathogen Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae Using Whole Genome Sequencing

Judith Guitart-Matas, Narjol Gonzalez-Escalona, Meghan Maguire, Anna Vilaró, Jaime Martinez-Urtaza, Lorenzo Fraile, Lourdes Migura-Garcia*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae (APP) is the causative agent of pleuropneumonia in pigs, one of the most relevant bacterial respiratory diseases in the swine industry. To date, 19 serotypes have been described based on capsular polysaccharide typing with significant virulence dissimilarities. In this study, 16 APP isolates from Spanish origin were selected to perform antimicrobial susceptibility tests and comparative genomic analysis using whole genome sequencing (WGS). To obtain a more comprehensive worldwide molecular epidemiologic analyses, all APP whole genome assemblies available at the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) at the time of the study were also included. An in-house in silico PCR approach enabled the correct serotyping of unserotyped or incorrectly serotyped isolates and allowed for the discrimination between serotypes 9 and 11. A pangenome analysis identified the presence or absence of gene clusters to be serotype specific, as well as virulence profile analyses targeting the apx operons. Antimicrobial resistance genes were correlated to the presence of specific plasmids. Altogether, this study provides new insights into the genetic variability within APP serotypes, correlates phenotypic tests with bioinformatic analyses and manifests the benefits of populated databases for a better assessment of diversity and variability of relatively unknown pathogens. Overall, genomic comparative analysis enhances the understanding of transmission and epidemiological patterns of this species and suggests vertical transmission of the pathogen, including the resistance genes, within the Spanish integrated systems.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere01185-22
Number of pages14
JournalMicrobiology spectrum
Volume10
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022

Keywords

  • Actinobacillus
  • swine
  • whole genome sequencing

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