Author(s): Kalia VC, Kumar R, Kumar P, Koul S
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Abstract The use of rrs (16S rRNA) gene is widely regarded as the "gold standard" for identifying bacteria and determining their phylogenetic relationships. Nevertheless, multiple copies of this gene in a genome is likely to give an overestimation of the bacterial diversity. In each of the 50 Streptococcus genomes (16 species, 50 strains), 4-7 copies of rrs are present. The nucleotide sequences of these rrs genes show high similarity within and among genomes, which did not allow unambiguous identification. A genome-wide search revealed the presence of 27 gene sequences common to all the Streptococcus species. Digestion of these 27 gene sequences with 10 type II restriction endonucleases (REs) showed that unique RE digestion in purH gene is sufficient for clear cut identification of 30 genomes belonging to 16 species. Additional gene-RE combinations allowed identification of another 15 strains belonging to S. pneumoniae, S. pyogenes, and S. suis. For the rest 5 strains, a combination of 2 genes was required for identifying them. The proposed strategy is likely to prove helpful in proper detection of pathogens like Streptococcus.
This article was published in Indian J Microbiol
and referenced in Journal of Molecular and Genetic Medicine