1887

Abstract

Raman spectroscopy has previously been demonstrated to be a highly useful methodology for the identification and/or typing of micro-organisms. In this study, we set out to evaluate whether this technology could also be applied as a tool to discriminate between isolates of , which is generally considered to be a genetically highly uniform species. In this evaluation, a total of 104 strains of were analysed, including two reference strains (strains M129 and FH), and 102 clinical isolates, which were isolated between 1973 and 2005 and originated from various countries. By Raman spectral analysis (Raman typing) of this strain collection, we were able to reproducibly distinguish six different clusters of strains. An unequivocal correlation between Raman typing and P1 genotyping, which is based on sequence differences in the P1 (or MPN141) gene of , was not observed. In the two major Raman clusters that we identified (clusters 3 and 6, which together harboured 81 % of the strains), the different P1 subtypes were similarly distributed, and ∼76 % isolates were of subtype 1, ∼20 % of subtype 2 and ∼5 % of variant 2a. Nevertheless, a relatively high prevalence of P1 subtype 2 strains was found in clusters 2 and 5 (100 %), as well as in cluster 1 (75 %) and cluster 4 (71 %); these clusters, however, harboured a small number of strains. Only two of the strains (2 %) could not be typed correctly. Interestingly, analysis of the Raman spectra revealed the presence of carotenoids in . This finding is in line with the identification of genes that have similarity with genes involved in a biochemical pathway leading to carotenoid synthesis, i.e. the 2--methyl--erythritol 4-phosphate (MEP) pathway. Therefore, we hypothesize that hosts an MEP-like pathway for carotenoid synthesis. We conclude that Raman spectroscopy is a convenient tool for discriminating between strains, and that it presents a promising supplement to the current methods for typing of this bacterium.

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2009-06-01
2019-11-15
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Comparisons between the amino acid sequences of enzymes from the MEP pathway and those derived from ORFs of . [PDF file](101 KB)

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