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BBSRC Studentship:The Role of Pathogenicity Islands in Salmonella Gallinarum Identified by Genome Sequencing in Virulence for Birds

Start date
2004
End date
2007
Objective
S. Gallinarum is a serotype that produces typhoid in birds but not mammals and in the absence of clinical disease is unable to colonise the avian alimentary tract. S. Gallinarum is closely related taxonomically to S. Enteritidis and S. Dublin, which produce typhoid in mice rather than poultry and are able to colonise the avian gut. A comparison between the genome sequences of these organisms using the annotated genomes of S. Typhimurium and S. Typhi for reference could thus identify host-specific virulence and colonisation determinants.

The Sanger Institute has expressed an interest in carrying out annotation and identification of virulence/colonisation determinants jointly with the IAH. The genomes of serotypes Gallinarum/ Pullorum/ Enteritidis/ Dublin/ Typhimurium/ Typhi will be compared in detail. Regions of the Typhimurium/Typhi genomes, which are known to contribute to virulence, will be studied and candidate virulence factors identified in Gallinarum.

Ambiguities and differences will be identified between the genomes. Novel loci will be identified by GC content and BLAST searches and by statistical models based on a number of factors using Act, GLIMMER, GeneMark, Ensembl amongst others. This will assist in identifying the location of novel host-specific genes and candidate colonisation genes.

The student will spend short periods of time at the Sanger Institute. Candidate virulence genes identified between serovars Gallinarum will studied in vivo to assess role in disease.

Funding Source
Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council
Project number
BBS/E/I/00001169
Categories
Salmonella
Commodities
Meat, Poultry, Game