The genera Bacillus, Francisella, and Yersinia each include species ranging from nonpathogenic environmental species, through symbionts and facultative pathogens,
to highly virulent human and animal pathogens. Comparative genomic sequencing and typing studies have indicated that the sequence similarity and gene composition of species having very different lifestyles can be very high [1, 19–21] Also, bacterial genomes are dynamic and non-target organisms could acquire diagnostic sequences by lateral gene transfer, especially if present on plasmids . An additional www.selleckchem.com/products/pf-04929113.html reason for including multiple targets is that for B. anthracis and Y. pestis, a full picture of virulence requires the detection of several markers. Although virulent Y. pestis usually contains three plasmids, strains deficient in one or more plasmids may cause fatal infections . Assays relying on one signature sequence for the detection of a pathogen [10, 23, 24], suffer from the constraints mentioned above, especially when analyzing environmental
samples . For instance, Y. pestis subgroup Pestoides lacks the plasminogen coagulase (pla) gene  that is used as the major and sometimes only target for the detection of Y. pestis [23, 26]. On the other hand, we found that the pla gene may yield false positive results in certain matrices (unpublished). In addition to relying on multiple targets, false positives are further 3-Methyladenine in vivo reduced by the high specificity of the developed assays for the selected targets, which was confirmed by in silico and in vitro validations. Selected targets Inclusion of chromosomal selleck chemicals llc markers in addition to virulence plasmids is important due to the occurrence of B. anthracis and Y. pestis strains lacking virulence plasmids. These strains, as well as yet uncharacterized closely related environmental species, share genomic traits that could lead to misidentification. Fully virulent B. anthracis strains possess plasmids Myosin pXO1 and pXO2. However, the detection of plasmids only, as for instance commercial
kits do, cannot detect plasmid-deficient B. anthracis strains such as Sterne and CDC 1014. Moreover, B. cereus strains carrying plasmid highly similar to those of B. anthracis (B. cereus G9241) are not correctly identified. Several chromosomal markers have been used for the detection of B. anthracis (e.g. BA813, rpoB, gyrA, gyrB, saspB, plcR, BA5345, BA5510), but only recently a locus was described for qPCR that did not yield any false positive results from closely related Bacillus . We have developed an alternative chromosomal signature sequence (sspE) for use in real-time PCR. This marker has previously been used for specific detection of B. anthracis, but differentiation required melting curve analysis . By selecting highly discriminating positions for primers and hydrolysis probe, we achieved specific detection without post-PCR analysis. For Y.