Using whole-genome sequencing to assess the diversity of Paenibacillus larvae within an outbreak and a beekeeping operation
ID Papić, Bojan (Author), ID Golob, Majda (Author), ID Zdovc, Irena (Author), ID Avberšek, Jana (Author), ID Pislak, Metka (Author), ID Kušar, Darja (Author)

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The spore-forming bacterium Paenibacillus larvae is the causative agent of American foulbrood (AFB), a devastating disease of honeybees (Apis mellifera). In the present study, we used whole-genome sequencing (WGS) to investigate an extensive outbreak of AFB in northwestern Slovenia in 2019. A total of 59 P. larvae isolates underwent WGS, of which 40 originated from a single beekeeping operation, to assess the diversity of P. larvae within the beekeeping operation, apiary and colony. By applying a case-specific single-linkage threshold of 34 allele differences (AD), whole-genome multilocus sequence typing (wgMLST) identified two outbreak clusters represented by ERIC II-ST11 clones. All isolates from a single beekeeping operation fell within cluster 1 and the median pairwise AD between them was 10 (range=1–22). The median pairwise AD for apiaries of the same beekeeping operation ranged from 8 to 11 (min.=1, max.=22). For colonies of the same apiary and honey samples from these colonies, the median pairwise AD ranged from 8 to 14 (min.=1, max.=20). The maximum within-cluster distance was 33 pairwise AD for cluster 1 and 44 for cluster 2 isolates. The minimum distance between the outbreak-related and non-related isolates was 37 AD, confirming the importance of associated epidemiological data for delineating outbreak clusters. The observed transmission events could be explained by the activities of honeybees and beekeepers. The present study provides insight into the genetic diversity of P. larvae at different levels and thus provides information for future AFB surveillance.

Keywords:Paenibacillus larvae, American foulbrood, AFB, whole-genome sequencing, WGS, whole-genome multilocus sequence typing, wgMLST, outbreak, beekeeping operation, molecular sequence data, genotype
Work type:Article
Typology:1.01 - Original Scientific Article
Organization:VF - Veterinary Faculty
Publication status:Published
Publication version:Version of Record
Number of pages:8 str.
Numbering:Vol. 7, iss. 12, art. 000709
PID:20.500.12556/RUL-133761 This link opens in a new window
ISSN on article:2057-5858
DOI:10.1099/mgen.0.000709 This link opens in a new window
COBISS.SI-ID:89094915 This link opens in a new window
Publication date in RUL:14.12.2021
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Record is a part of a journal

Title:Microbial genomics
Publisher:Microbiology Society
COBISS.SI-ID:525385753 This link opens in a new window


License:CC BY-NC 4.0, Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International
Description:A creative commons license that bans commercial use, but the users don’t have to license their derivative works on the same terms.


Funder:ARRS - Agencija za raziskovalno dejavnost Republike Slovenije
Project number:V4-1804
Name:Ugotavljanje poti širjenja hude gnilobe čebelje zalege z genetsko tipizacijo sevov povzročitelja bolezni

Funder:ARRS - Agencija za raziskovalno dejavnost Republike Slovenije
Project number:P4-0092
Name:Zdravje živali, okolje in varna hrana

Funder:ARRS - Agencija za raziskovalno dejavnost Republike Slovenije
Funding programme:Slovenia, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Food

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