Multilocus sequence typing of Clostridium perfringens strains from neonatal calves, dairy workers and associated environment in India
Clostridium perfringens is a globally recognized zoonotic pathogen. We report isolation and genotyping of C. perfringens from neonatal calves, dairy workers and their associated environment in India. A total of 103 fecal samples from neonatal calves, 25 stool swabs from the dairy workers and 50 samples from their associated environment were collected from two dairy farms. C. perfringens was detected in 26 out of 103 (25.2%) neonatal calf samples, 7 out of 25 (28%) human stool samples and 17 out of 50 (34%) environmental samples. C. perfringens type A strains were predominant in neonatal calves (24/26; 92.3%) and associated environment (15/17; 88.2%). In contrast, strains from dairy workers mostly belonged to type F (5/7; 71.4%), which also carried the beta2 toxin gene. Seventeen strains were analyzed by multilocus sequence typing (MLST) for studying genotypic relationship along with 188 C. perfringens strains available from public databases. A total of 112 sequence types (STs) were identified from 205 C. perfringens strains analyzed. A Clonal complex (CC) represented by three STs (ST 98, ST 41 and ST 110) representing predominantly type F (18/20 strains) were mostly associated with human illnesses. Among predominant STs, ST 54 was associated with enteritis cases in foals and dogs and ST 58 associated with necrotic enteritis in poultry. Seventeen Indian strains were assigned to 13 STs. Genetic relatedness among strains of calves, dairy worker and associated environments indicate inter-host transfers and zoonotic spreads.
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