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Burkholderia pseudomallei, the causative agent of melioidosis, is rare but ecologically established and widely dispersed in the environment in Puerto Rico.
PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2019 09; 13(9):e0007727.PN

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Burkholderia pseudomallei is a soil-dwelling bacterium and the causative agent of melioidosis. The global burden and distribution of melioidosis is poorly understood, including in the Caribbean. B. pseudomallei was previously isolated from humans and soil in eastern Puerto Rico but the abundance and distribution of B. pseudomallei in Puerto Rico as a whole has not been thoroughly investigated.

METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS

We collected 600 environmental samples (500 soil and 100 water) from 60 sites around Puerto Rico. We identified B. pseudomallei by isolating it via culturing and/or using PCR to detect its DNA within complex DNA extracts. Only three adjacent soil samples from one site were positive for B. pseudomallei with PCR; we obtained 55 isolates from two of these samples. The 55 B. pseudomallei isolates exhibited fine-scale variation in the core genome and contained four novel genomic islands. Phylogenetic analyses grouped Puerto Rico B. pseudomallei isolates into a monophyletic clade containing other Caribbean isolates, which was nested inside a larger clade containing all isolates from Central/South America. Other Burkholderia species were commonly observed in Puerto Rico; we cultured 129 isolates from multiple soil and water samples collected at numerous sites around Puerto Rico, including representatives of B. anthina, B. cenocepacia, B. cepacia, B. contaminans, B. glumae, B. seminalis, B. stagnalis, B. ubonensis, and several unidentified novel Burkholderia spp.

CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE

B. pseudomallei was only detected in three soil samples collected at one site in north central Puerto Rico with only two of those samples yielding isolates. All previous human and environmental B. pseudomallei isolates were obtained from eastern Puerto Rico. These findings suggest B. pseudomallei is ecologically established and widely dispersed in the environment in Puerto Rico but rare. Phylogeographic patterns suggest the source of B. pseudomallei populations in Puerto Rico and elsewhere in the Caribbean may have been Central or South America.

Authors+Show Affiliations

The Pathogen and Microbiome Institute, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona, United States of America.The Pathogen and Microbiome Institute, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona, United States of America.U.S. Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Veterinary Services, San Juan, Puerto Rico, United States of America.The Pathogen and Microbiome Institute, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona, United States of America.The Pathogen and Microbiome Institute, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona, United States of America.The Pathogen and Microbiome Institute, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona, United States of America.The Pathogen and Microbiome Institute, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona, United States of America.The Pathogen and Microbiome Institute, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona, United States of America.Bacterial Special Pathogens Branch, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, United States of America.Bacterial Special Pathogens Branch, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, United States of America.U.S. Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Veterinary Services, San Juan, Puerto Rico, United States of America.U.S. Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Veterinary Services, San Juan, Puerto Rico, United States of America.Dengue Branch, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, San Juan, Puerto Rico, United States of America.Dengue Branch, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, San Juan, Puerto Rico, United States of America.The Pathogen and Microbiome Institute, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona, United States of America.The Pathogen and Microbiome Institute, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona, United States of America.The Pathogen and Microbiome Institute, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona, United States of America.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

Language

eng

PubMed ID

31487287

Citation

Hall, Carina M., et al. "Burkholderia Pseudomallei, the Causative Agent of Melioidosis, Is Rare but Ecologically Established and Widely Dispersed in the Environment in Puerto Rico." PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, vol. 13, no. 9, 2019, pp. e0007727.
Hall CM, Jaramillo S, Jimenez R, et al. Burkholderia pseudomallei, the causative agent of melioidosis, is rare but ecologically established and widely dispersed in the environment in Puerto Rico. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2019;13(9):e0007727.
Hall, C. M., Jaramillo, S., Jimenez, R., Stone, N. E., Centner, H., Busch, J. D., Bratsch, N., Roe, C. C., Gee, J. E., Hoffmaster, A. R., Rivera-Garcia, S., Soltero, F., Ryff, K., Perez-Padilla, J., Keim, P., Sahl, J. W., & Wagner, D. M. (2019). Burkholderia pseudomallei, the causative agent of melioidosis, is rare but ecologically established and widely dispersed in the environment in Puerto Rico. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, 13(9), e0007727. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pntd.0007727
Hall CM, et al. Burkholderia Pseudomallei, the Causative Agent of Melioidosis, Is Rare but Ecologically Established and Widely Dispersed in the Environment in Puerto Rico. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 2019;13(9):e0007727. PubMed PMID: 31487287.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Burkholderia pseudomallei, the causative agent of melioidosis, is rare but ecologically established and widely dispersed in the environment in Puerto Rico. AU - Hall,Carina M, AU - Jaramillo,Sierra, AU - Jimenez,Rebecca, AU - Stone,Nathan E, AU - Centner,Heather, AU - Busch,Joseph D, AU - Bratsch,Nicole, AU - Roe,Chandler C, AU - Gee,Jay E, AU - Hoffmaster,Alex R, AU - Rivera-Garcia,Sarai, AU - Soltero,Fred, AU - Ryff,Kyle, AU - Perez-Padilla,Janice, AU - Keim,Paul, AU - Sahl,Jason W, AU - Wagner,David M, Y1 - 2019/09/05/ PY - 2019/05/21/received PY - 2019/08/23/accepted PY - 2019/09/17/revised PY - 2019/9/6/pubmed PY - 2020/1/15/medline PY - 2019/9/6/entrez SP - e0007727 EP - e0007727 JF - PLoS neglected tropical diseases JO - PLoS Negl Trop Dis VL - 13 IS - 9 N2 - BACKGROUND: Burkholderia pseudomallei is a soil-dwelling bacterium and the causative agent of melioidosis. The global burden and distribution of melioidosis is poorly understood, including in the Caribbean. B. pseudomallei was previously isolated from humans and soil in eastern Puerto Rico but the abundance and distribution of B. pseudomallei in Puerto Rico as a whole has not been thoroughly investigated. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We collected 600 environmental samples (500 soil and 100 water) from 60 sites around Puerto Rico. We identified B. pseudomallei by isolating it via culturing and/or using PCR to detect its DNA within complex DNA extracts. Only three adjacent soil samples from one site were positive for B. pseudomallei with PCR; we obtained 55 isolates from two of these samples. The 55 B. pseudomallei isolates exhibited fine-scale variation in the core genome and contained four novel genomic islands. Phylogenetic analyses grouped Puerto Rico B. pseudomallei isolates into a monophyletic clade containing other Caribbean isolates, which was nested inside a larger clade containing all isolates from Central/South America. Other Burkholderia species were commonly observed in Puerto Rico; we cultured 129 isolates from multiple soil and water samples collected at numerous sites around Puerto Rico, including representatives of B. anthina, B. cenocepacia, B. cepacia, B. contaminans, B. glumae, B. seminalis, B. stagnalis, B. ubonensis, and several unidentified novel Burkholderia spp. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: B. pseudomallei was only detected in three soil samples collected at one site in north central Puerto Rico with only two of those samples yielding isolates. All previous human and environmental B. pseudomallei isolates were obtained from eastern Puerto Rico. These findings suggest B. pseudomallei is ecologically established and widely dispersed in the environment in Puerto Rico but rare. Phylogeographic patterns suggest the source of B. pseudomallei populations in Puerto Rico and elsewhere in the Caribbean may have been Central or South America. SN - 1935-2735 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/31487287/Burkholderia_pseudomallei_the_causative_agent_of_melioidosis_is_rare_but_ecologically_established_and_widely_dispersed_in_the_environment_in_Puerto_Rico_ L2 - http://dx.plos.org/10.1371/journal.pntd.0007727 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -