Application of Streptococcus uberis multilocus sequence typing: analysis of the population structure detected among environmental and bovine isolates from New Zealand and the United Kingdom.
Pullinger GD., López-Benavides M., Coffey TJ., Williamson JH., Cursons RT., Summers E., Lacy-Hulbert J., Maiden MC., Leigh JA.
We recently developed a multilocus sequence typing (MLST) scheme to differentiate S. uberis isolates and facilitate an understanding of the population biology of this pathogen. The scheme was initially used to study a collection of 160 bovine milk isolates from the United Kingdom and showed that the majority of isolates were from one clonal complex (designated the ST-5 complex). Here we describe the MLST analysis of a collection of New Zealand isolates. These were obtained from diverse sources, including bovine milk, other bovine anatomical sites, and environmental sources. The complete allelic profiles of 253 isolates were determined. The collection was highly diverse and included 131 different sequence types (STs). The New Zealand and United Kingdom populations were distinct, since none of the 131 STs were represented within the previously studied collection of 160 United Kingdom S. uberis isolates. However, seven of the STs were members of the ST-5 clonal complex, the major complex within the United Kingdom collection. Two new clonal complexes were identified: ST-143 and ST-86. All three major complexes were isolated from milk, other bovine sites, and the environment. Carriage of the hasA gene, which is necessary for capsule formation, correlated with clonal complex and isolation from clinical cases of mastitis.