Journal article

Bridging of Neisseria gonorrhoeae lineages across sexual networks in the HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis era

Deborah A Williamson, Eric PF Chow, Claire L Gorrie, Torsten Seemann, Danielle J Ingle, Nasra Higgins, Marion Easton, George Taiaroa, Yonatan H Grad, Jason C Kwong, Christopher K Fairley, Marcus Y Chen, Benjamin P Howden



Whole genome sequencing (WGS) has been used to investigate transmission of Neisseria gonorrhoeae, but to date, most studies have not combined genomic data with detailed information on sexual behaviour to define the extent of transmission across population risk groups (bridging). Here, through combined epidemiological and genomic analysis of 2,186N. gonorrhoeae isolates from Australia, we show widespread transmission of N. gonorrhoeae within and between population groups. We describe distinct transmission clusters associated with men who have sex with men (MSM) and heterosexuals, and men who have sex with men and women (MSMW) are identified as a possible bridging population between these grou..

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Awarded by National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) of Australia

Awarded by NHMRC

Awarded by European Union

Funding Acknowledgements

D.A.W. (GNT1123854), E.P.F.C. (GNT1091226), and J.C.K. (GNT1142613) are supported by Early Career Fellowships from the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) of Australia. B.P.H. is supported by a Practitioner Fellowship from the NHMRC (GNT1105905). D.J.I. is supported by the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement 643476. Work in this study was supported by a Project Grant from the NHMRC (GNT1147735) and a Partnership grant from the NHMRC (GNT1149991). MDU PHL is funded by the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services. We thank Kerrie Stevens, Darren Lee and Savi Rambocus for technical assistance with retrieving isolates, and the staff of the molecular diagnostics section at MDU PHL for sequencing isolates.