University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food & Environment


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Genome of Streptococcus zooepidemicus W60

Sergey C. Artiushin, Ph.D.
(859) 218-1111

Streptococcus zooepidemicus, a Lancefield group C streptococcus, is an opportunistic pathogen of a wide range of domestic animals and causes a serious infection of humans.

In horses, S. zooepidemicus accounts for about 50% of cases of metritis in mares and is almost always present in lower respiratory tract infections as an opportunistic invader following virus infection, and heat or transport stress. Information about its virulence factors and potential protective antigens is limited and access to its genome sequence would be extremely helpful for predicting as yet unknown virulence proteins and vaccine targets. Genomic sequence of S. zooepidemicus would also be useful in defining unique features of the closely related S. equi, an obligate parasite of Equidae and a contagious and virulent pathogen.

The long term goal of this project is use of comparative genomics to determine the minimal essential repertoire of antigens that will protect against strangles and S. zooepidemicus infections. Sequence information of several cell wall, transmembrane and secreted proteins of S. equi and S. zooepidemicus obtained recently in our laboratory and the S equi and S. zooepidemicus genome sequence projects conducting in Sanger Center (UK) provide a strong background for this project.

S. zooepidemicus W60 was selected because it was genetically distinct from S. equi and from the S. zooepidemicus strain chosen for sequencing in the Sanger Center. S. zooepidemicus W60 is also well documented as to origin and has been the subject of numerous published studies from our laboratory. A chromosomal DNA library of S. zooepidemicus W60 for shotgun sequencing was produced by cloning 1.5-2.5 fragments of W60 DNA into pBCKS+ vector. Colonies (5640) were picked and sequencing of inserts from both ends was performed following plasmid purification. Assembly of sequences and comparison of the generated contigs with sequences on the Sanger Center server are now in progress. More sequencing will be performed if needed.


Maxwell H.Gluck Equine Research Center
Department of Veterinary Science, University of Kentucky
Lexington, Kentucky 40546-0099

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