Serotyping has traditionally been considered the basis for surveillance of Salmonella
, but it cannot distinguish distinct lineages sharing the same serovar that vary in host range, pathogenicity and epidemiology. However, polyphyletic serovars have not been extensively investigated. Public health microbiology is currently being transformed by whole-genome sequencing (WGS) data, which promote the lineage determination using a more powerful and accurate technique than serotyping. The focus in this study is to survey and analyze putative polyphyletic serovars. The multi-locus sequence typing (MLST) phylogenetic analysis identified four putative polyphyletic serovars, namely, Montevideo, Bareilly, Saintpaul, and Muenchen. Whole-genome-based phylogeny and population structure highlighted the polyphyletic nature of Bareilly and Saintpaul and the multi-lineage nature of Montevideo and Muenchen. The population of these serovars was defined by extensive genetic diversity, the open pan genome and the small core genome. Source niche metadata revealed putative existence of lineage-specific niche adaptation (host-preference and environmental-preference), exhibited by lineage-specific genomic contents associated with metabolism and transport. Meanwhile, differences in genetic profiles relating to virulence and antimicrobial resistance within each lineage may contribute to pathogenicity and epidemiology. The results also showed that recombination events occurring at the H1-antigen loci may be an important reason for polyphyly. The results presented here provide the genomic basis of simple, rapid, and accurate identification of phylogenetic lineages of these serovars, which could have important implications for public health.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited