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Population genomics of Francisella tularensis subsp. holarctica and its implication on the eco-epidemiology of tularemia in Switzerland

Wittwer, Matthias and Altpeter, Ekkehard and Pilo, Paola and Gygli, Sebastian M. and Beuret, Christian and Foucault, Frederic and Ackermann-Gäumann, Rahel and Karrer, Urs and Jacob, Daniela and Grunow, Roland and Schürch, Nadia. (2018) Population genomics of Francisella tularensis subsp. holarctica and its implication on the eco-epidemiology of tularemia in Switzerland. Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology, 8. p. 89.

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Abstract

Whole genome sequencing (WGS) methods provide new possibilities in the field of molecular epidemiology. This is particularly true for monomorphic organisms where the discriminatory power of traditional methods (e.g., restriction enzyme length polymorphism typing, multi locus sequence typing etc.) is inadequate to elucidate complex disease transmission patterns, as well as resolving the phylogeny at high resolution on a micro-geographic scale. In this study, we present insights into the population structure of; Francisella tularensis; subsp.; holarctica; , the causative agent of tularemia in Switzerland. A total of 59; Fth; isolates were obtained from castor bean ticks (; Ixodes ricinus); , animals and humans and a high resolution phylogeny was inferred using WGS methods. The majority of the; Fth; population in Switzerland belongs to the west European B.11 clade and shows an extraordinary genetic diversity underlining the old evolutionary history of the pathogen in the alpine region. Moreover, a new B.11 subclade was identified which was not described so far. The combined analysis of the epidemiological data of human tularemia cases with the whole genome sequences of the 59 isolates provide evidence that ticks play a pivotal role in transmitting; Fth; to humans and other vertebrates in Switzerland. This is further underlined by the correlation of disease risk estimates with climatic and ecological factors influencing the survival of ticks.
Faculties and Departments:09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH)
09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) > Department of Medical Parasitology and Infection Biology (MPI) > Tuberculosis Research (Gagneux)
UniBasel Contributors:Gygli, Sebastian
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:Frontiers Media
e-ISSN:2235-2988
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
Language:English
Identification Number:
Last Modified:14 Sep 2018 13:55
Deposited On:03 Jul 2018 08:33

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