Journal article

A Very Early-Branching Staphylococcus aureus Lineage Lacking the Carotenoid Pigment Staphyloxanthin

Deborah C Holt, Matthew TG Holden, Steven YC Tong, Santiago Castillo-Ramirez, Louise Clarke, Michael A Quail, Bart J Currie, Julian Parkhill, Stephen D Bentley, Edward J Feil, Philip M Giffard



Here we discuss the evolution of the northern Australian Staphylococcus aureus isolate MSHR1132 genome. MSHR1132 belongs to the divergent clonal complex 75 lineage. The average nucleotide divergence between orthologous genes in MSHR1132 and typical S. aureus is approximately sevenfold greater than the maximum divergence observed in this species to date. MSHR1132 has a small accessory genome, which includes the well-characterized genomic islands, νSAα and νSaβ, suggesting that these elements were acquired well before the expansion of the typical S. aureus population. Other mobile elements show mosaic structure (the prophage ϕSa3) or evidence of recent acquisition from a typical S. aureus line..

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University of Melbourne Researchers


Awarded by Australian National Health and Medical Research Council

Awarded by Translation Research on Combating Antimicrobial Resistance

Funding Acknowledgements

We are grateful to Jann Hennessey and Rob Baird from Royal Darwin Hospital Pathology for assisting us to acquire clinical isolates and for performing the VITEK 2 assays. This work was supported by an Australian National Health and Medical Research Council Postdoctoral Training Fellowship (508829) awarded to S.Y.C.T. and Translation Research on Combating Antimicrobial Resistance funding awarded to S.C.R. (FP7-HEALTH #223031). D.C.H. and M.T.G.H. had equal inputs into this study. Data deposition: The chromosome and plasmid sequences reported have been deposited in EMBL with accession numbers FR821777 and FR821778, respectively.