1887

Abstract

Serum opacity factor of (OFS) has recently been identified as a virulence determinant of an strain. In this study, we investigated the prevalence and variations of the gene among 108 isolates from diseased and healthy pigs, and human patients. PCR screening and sequencing analysis showed that besides the gene reported already (designated type 1), there were three allelic variants of (designated types 2 to 4). Type-1 and type-2 genes were expected to encode functional OFS, and SDS extracts of the isolates with type-1 and type-2 opacified horse serum. Culture supernatants of the isolates with type-2 also showed strong serum opacification activity. In contrast, type-3 was interrupted by a point mutation and type-4 was disrupted by either insertion of an IS element or genetic rearrangement, and therefore the SDS extracts and culture supernatants of the isolates with type-3 and type-4 did not show serum opacification activity. Regardless of their origins, approximately 30 % of the isolates possessed functional OFSs, although type-2 was found only in three isolates from healthy pigs. Multilocus sequence typing analysis showed that most of the isolates with type-1 belonged to the sequence type (ST)1 complex, and most of the isolates with type-3 and type-4 belonged to the ST27 complex. The isolates with type-2 were not assigned to a major ST complex. These results suggest that type-1 OFS contributes to the virulence of a limited number of isolates, i.e. those of the ST1 complex type, whereas other may not possess this category of virulence factor; the importance of type-2 OFS is obscure.

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2008-04-01
2020-11-23
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