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Enhancing The Whole Genome Sequence(wgs)based Surveillance of Salmonella; Listeria and Shiga Toxin Producing Escherichia Coli(stec) Isolated From Food and Environment At The National and Global Level

Thakur, Siddhartha
North Carolina State University
Start date
End date
Salmonella, Listeria and STEC isolated from retail meat, fresh produce and theirenvironment have been implicated as the leading causes of bacterial foodborne illnessin the US and around the world. It is important that we monitor the prevalence andtrends of important foodborne bacterial strains in food products that can eventually passto the consumers along the farm-to-fork chain resulting in significant public healthimpact. It is, therefore, important to expand the current surveillance network and monitorthese important pathogens at the global scale to prevent future outbreaks. We proposeto do this in collaboration with the WHO-AGISAR (Advisory Committee on IntegratedSurveillance of Antimicrobial Resistance) which funds countries to conduct surveillanceof antimicrobial resistant foodborne bacterial pathogens in humans, food products andthe environment. We strongly believe that the data generated through the proposedwork will assist in monitoring Salmonella, Listeria and STEC from at the internationallevel where current surveillance systems are not robust enough to track them. TheWGS data and metadata will significantly improve the power to resolve outbreaks byhelping to quickly link clinical and retail product samples and assist in outbreakinvestigations. The PD (Dr. Thakur) laboratory, in partnership with the NC Departmentof Agriculture and Consumer Services (NCDACS), is a GenomeTrakr collaboratinglaboratory. Our proposal will significantly assist us in tracking emergence of potentialnew Salmonella, Listeria and STEC strains and allow the public health agencies to takeappropriate steps to safeguard human and animal health at the global level.The specific objectives of our proposal are:1) Establish a robust surveillance system based on whole genome sequence (WGS)profile of 400 Salmonella, Listeria and STEC isolated from food and environmentalsources within and outside the US.2) Compare the WGS profiles of Salmonella, Listeria and STEC at the global scale toassist in outbreak investigations and track emerging strains of public health importance.The long-term objective of our proposal is to protect and promote public health bystrengthening the surveillance of Salmonella, Listeria and STEC within and outside theUS by generating critical WGS data and contributing to the GenomeTrakr mission.
Funding Source
Food and Drug Administration
Project source
View this project
Project number
Escherichia coli
Bacterial Pathogens