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Open AccessArticle

Molecular Characterization of Clostridium perfringens Strains Isolated in Italy

1
Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale dell’Umbria e delle Marche “Togo Rosati” Via G. Salvemini 1, 06126 Perugia, Italy
2
Dipartimento di Medicina Veterinaria, Università degli Studi di Perugia, Via S. Costanzo 4, 06126 Perugia, Italy
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Toxins 2020, 12(10), 650; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins12100650
Received: 1 August 2020 / Revised: 29 September 2020 / Accepted: 6 October 2020 / Published: 8 October 2020
Clostridium (C.) perfringens is the causative agent of several diseases and enteric infections in animals and humans. The pathogenicity of the bacterium is largely mediated by the production of a wide range of toxins. Individual C. perfringens strains produce only subsets of this toxin repertoire, which permits the classification in seven toxinotypes (A–G). In addition, a variety of minor toxins further characterizes the single strains. The aim of this work was to evaluate, using Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) assays, the diversity of 632 C. perfringens strains isolated in Italy over 15 years. The genotyped strains were analyzed to determine the presence of major and minor toxins (cpe, consensus, and atypical cpb2), their geographical origins, and the source of isolation (animal species or food). Our study shows that toxinotype A had the greatest representation (93%) and correlated mainly with consensus cpb2 in a variety of animal species, as well as with atypical cpb2 in the five food samples. Type D, associated with cpe and atypical cpb2 minor toxins, was identified in 3% of the cases, and type F was identified in 2.5%. Seven type C isolates (1.1%) were detected in cattle, whereas the only type B atypical cpb2 isolated in Italy was detected in a goat, and one type E cpe+atypical cpb2 was detected in a sheep. Type G was not detected. View Full-Text
Keywords: Clostridium perfringens; genotyping; toxinotypes; epidemiology; consensus and atypical cpb2; cpe; enterotoxin; clostridial disease; animal sources; food; vaccine Clostridium perfringens; genotyping; toxinotypes; epidemiology; consensus and atypical cpb2; cpe; enterotoxin; clostridial disease; animal sources; food; vaccine
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Forti, K.; Ferroni, L.; Pellegrini, M.; Cruciani, D.; De Giuseppe, A.; Crotti, S.; Papa, P.; Maresca, C.; Severi, G.; Marenzoni, M.L.; Cagiola, M. Molecular Characterization of Clostridium perfringens Strains Isolated in Italy. Toxins 2020, 12, 650.

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