Genetic markers in s. Paratyphi c reveal primary adaptation to pigs

Satheesh Nair, Maria Fookes, Craig Corton, Nicholas R. Thomson, John Wain, Gemma C. Langridge

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Salmonella enterica with the identical antigenic formula 6,7:c:1,5 can be differentiated biochemically and by disease syndrome. One grouping, Salmonella Paratyphi C, is currently considered a typhoidal serovar, responsible for enteric fever in humans. The human-restricted typhoidal serovars (S. Typhi and Paratyphi A, B and C) typically display high levels of genome degradation and are cited as an example of convergent evolution for host adaptation in humans. However, S. Paratyphi C presents a different clinical picture to S. Typhi/Paratyphi A, in a patient group with predisposition, raising the possibility that its natural history is different, and that infection is invasive salmonellosis rather than enteric fever. Using whole genome sequencing and metabolic pathway analysis, we compared the genomes of 17 S. Paratyphi C strains to other members of the 6,7:c:1,5 group and to two typhoidal serovars: S. Typhi and Paratyphi A. The genome degradation observed in S. Paratyphi C was much lower than S. Typhi/Paratyphi A, but similar to the other 6,7:c:1,5 strains. Genomic and metabolic comparisons revealed little to no overlap between S. Paratyphi C and the other typhoidal serovars, arguing against convergent evolution and instead providing evidence of a primary adaptation to pigs in accordance with the 6,7:c:1.5 strains.

Original languageEnglish
Article number657
Number of pages10
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 30 Apr 2020


  • Convergent evolution
  • Genome degradation
  • Genomic lesions
  • Host adaptation

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