Genome Structural Diversity among 31 Bordetella pertussis Isolates from Two Recent U.S. Whooping Cough Statewide Epidemics.
ABSTRACT: During 2010 and 2012, California and Vermont, respectively, experienced statewide epidemics of pertussis with differences seen in the demographic affected, case clinical presentation, and molecular epidemiology of the circulating strains. To overcome limitations of the current molecular typing methods for pertussis, we utilized whole-genome sequencing to gain a broader understanding of how current circulating strains are causing large epidemics. Through the use of combined next-generation sequencing technologies, this study compared de novo, single-contig genome assemblies from 31 out of 33 Bordetella pertussis isolates collected during two separate pertussis statewide epidemics and 2 resequenced vaccine strains. Final genome architecture assemblies were verified with whole-genome optical mapping. Sixteen distinct genome rearrangement profiles were observed in epidemic isolate genomes, all of which were distinct from the genome structures of the two resequenced vaccine strains. These rearrangements appear to be mediated by repetitive sequence elements, such as high-copy-number mobile genetic elements and rRNA operons. Additionally, novel and previously identified single nucleotide polymorphisms were detected in 10 virulence-related genes in the epidemic isolates. Whole-genome variation analysis identified state-specific variants, and coding regions bearing nonsynonymous mutations were classified into functional annotated orthologous groups. Comprehensive studies on whole genomes are needed to understand the resurgence of pertussis and develop novel tools to better characterize the molecular epidemiology of evolving B. pertussis populations. IMPORTANCE Pertussis, or whooping cough, is the most poorly controlled vaccine-preventable bacterial disease in the United States, which has experienced a resurgence for more than a decade. Once viewed as a monomorphic pathogen, B. pertussis strains circulating during epidemics exhibit diversity visible on a genome structural level, previously undetectable by traditional sequence analysis using short-read technologies. For the first time, we combine short- and long-read sequencing platforms with restriction optical mapping for single-contig, de novo assembly of 31 isolates to investigate two geographically and temporally independent U.S. pertussis epidemics. These complete genomes reshape our understanding of B. pertussis evolution and strengthen molecular epidemiology toward one day understanding the resurgence of pertussis.
Project description:Past patterns of infectious disease transmission set the stage on which modern epidemiologic dynamics are played out. Here, we present a comprehensive account of pertussis (whooping cough) transmission in the United States during the early vaccine era. We analyzed recently digitized weekly incidence records from Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports from 1938 to 1955, when the whole-cell pertussis vaccine was rolled out, and related them to contemporary patterns of transmission and resurgence documented in monthly incidence data from the National Notifiable Diseases Surveillance System. We found that, during the early vaccine era, pertussis epidemics in US states could be categorized as 1) annual, 2) initially annual and later multiennial, or 3) multiennial. States with predominantly annual cycles tended to have higher per capita birth rates, more household crowding, more children per family, and lower rates of school attendance than the states with multiennial cycles. Additionally, states that exhibited annual epidemics during 1938-1955 have had the highest recent (2001-2010) incidence, while those states that transitioned from annual cycles to multiennial cycles have had relatively low recent incidence. Our study provides an extensive picture of pertussis epidemiology in the United States dating back to the onset of vaccination, a back-story that could aid epidemiologists in understanding contemporary transmission patterns.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Despite high vaccination coverage using acellular (ACV) and whole-cell pertussis (WCV) vaccines, the resurgence of pertussis is observed globally. Genetic divergence in circulating strains of Bordetella pertussis has been reported as one of the contributing factors for the resurgence of the disease. Our current knowledge of B. pertussis genetic evolution in circulating strains is mostly based on studies conducted in countries using ACVs targeting only a few antigens used in the production of ACVs. To better understand the adaptation to vaccine-induced selection pressure, it will be essential to study B. pertussis populations in developing countries which are using WCVs. India is a significant user and global supplier of WCVs. We report here comparative genome analyses of vaccine and clinical isolates reported from India. Whole-genome sequences obtained from vaccine strains: WCV (J445, J446, J447 and J448), ACV (BP165) were compared with Tohama-I reference strain and recently reported clinical isolates from India (BPD1, BPD2). Core genome-based phylogenetic analysis was also performed using 166 isolates reported from countries using ACV. RESULTS:Whole-genome analysis of vaccine and clinical isolates reported from India revealed high genetic similarity and conserved genome among strains. Phylogenetic analysis showed that clinical and vaccine strains share genetic closeness with reference strain Tohama-I. The allelic profile of vaccine strains (J445:ptxP1/ptxA2/prn1/fim2-1/fim3-1; J446: ptxP2/ptxA4/prn7/fim2-2/fim3-1; J447 and J448: ptxP1/ptxA1/ prn1/fim2-1/fim3-1), which matched entirely with clinical isolates (BPD1:ptxP1/ptxA1/prn1/fim2-1 and BPD2: ptxP1/ptxA1/prn1/fim2-1) reported from India. Multi-locus sequence typing (MLST) demonstrated the presence of dominant sequence types ST2 and primitive ST1 in vaccine strains which will allow better coverage against circulating strains of B. pertussis. CONCLUSIONS:The study provides a detailed characterization of vaccine and clinical strains reported from India, which will further facilitate epidemiological studies on genetic shifts in countries which are using WCVs in their immunization programs.
Project description:Despite high pertussis vaccine coverage, reported cases of whooping cough (pertussis) have increased over the last decade in the United States and other developed countries. Although Bordetella pertussis is well known for its limited gene sequence variation, recent advances in long-read sequencing technology have begun to reveal genomic structural heterogeneity among otherwise indistinguishable isolates, even within geographically or temporally defined epidemics. We have compared rearrangements among complete genome assemblies from 257 B. pertussis isolates to examine the potential evolution of the chromosomal structure in a pathogen with minimal gene nucleotide sequence diversity. Discrete changes in gene order were identified that differentiated genomes from vaccine reference strains and clinical isolates of various genotypes, frequently along phylogenetic boundaries defined by single nucleotide polymorphisms. The observed rearrangements were primarily large inversions centered on the replication origin or terminus and flanked by IS481, a mobile genetic element with >240 copies per genome and previously suspected to mediate rearrangements and deletions by homologous recombination. These data illustrate that structural genome evolution in B. pertussis is not limited to reduction but also includes rearrangement. Therefore, although genomes of clinical isolates are structurally diverse, specific changes in gene order are conserved, perhaps due to positive selection, providing novel information for investigating disease resurgence and molecular epidemiology.IMPORTANCE Whooping cough, primarily caused by Bordetella pertussis, has resurged in the United States even though the coverage with pertussis-containing vaccines remains high. The rise in reported cases has included increased disease rates among all vaccinated age groups, provoking questions about the pathogen's evolution. The chromosome of B. pertussis includes a large number of repetitive mobile genetic elements that obstruct genome analysis. However, these mobile elements facilitate large rearrangements that alter the order and orientation of essential protein-encoding genes, which otherwise exhibit little nucleotide sequence diversity. By comparing the complete genome assemblies from 257 isolates, we show that specific rearrangements have been conserved throughout recent evolutionary history, perhaps by eliciting changes in gene expression, which may also provide useful information for molecular epidemiology.
Project description:Parents hesitant to vaccinate their children may delay routine immunizations or seek exemptions from state vaccine mandates. Recent outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases in the United States have drawn attention to this phenomenon. Improved understanding of the association between vaccine refusal and the epidemiology of these diseases is needed.To review the published literature to evaluate the association between vaccine delay, refusal, or exemption and the epidemiology of measles and pertussis, 2 vaccine-preventable diseases with recent US outbreaks.Search of PubMed through November 30, 2015, for reports of US measles outbreaks that have occurred since measles was declared eliminated in the United States (after January 1, 2000), endemic and epidemic pertussis since the lowest point in US pertussis incidence (after January 1, 1977), and for studies that assessed disease risk in the context of vaccine delay or exemption.We identified 18 published measles studies (9 annual summaries and 9 outbreak reports), which described 1416 measles cases (individual age range, 2 weeks-84 years; 178 cases younger than 12 months) and more than half (56.8%) had no history of measles vaccination. Of the 970 measles cases with detailed vaccination data, 574 cases were unvaccinated despite being vaccine eligible and 405 (70.6%) of these had nonmedical exemptions (eg, exemptions for religious or philosophical reasons, as opposed to medical contraindications; 41.8% of total). Among 32 reports of pertussis outbreaks, which included 10,609 individuals for whom vaccination status was reported (age range, 10 days-87 years), the 5 largest statewide epidemics had substantial proportions (range, 24%-45%) of unvaccinated or undervaccinated individuals. However, several pertussis outbreaks also occurred in highly vaccinated populations, indicating waning immunity. Nine reports (describing 12 outbreaks) provided detailed vaccination data on unimmunized cases; among 8 of these outbreaks from 59% through 93% of unvaccinated individuals were intentionally unvaccinated.A substantial proportion of the US measles cases in the era after elimination were intentionally unvaccinated. The phenomenon of vaccine refusal was associated with an increased risk for measles among people who refuse vaccines and among fully vaccinated individuals. Although pertussis resurgence has been attributed to waning immunity and other factors, vaccine refusal was still associated with an increased risk for pertussis in some populations.
Project description:Pertussis, a highly contagious respiratory infection, remains a public health priority despite the availability of vaccines for 70 years. Still a leading cause of mortality in developing countries, pertussis has re-emerged in several developed countries with high vaccination coverage. Resurgence of pertussis in these countries has routinely been attributed to increased awareness of the disease, imperfect vaccinal protection or high infection rates in adults. In this review, we first present 1980-2012 incidence data from 63 countries and show that pertussis resurgence is not universal. We further argue that the large geographical variation in trends probably precludes a simple explanation, such as the transition from whole-cell to acellular pertussis vaccines. Reviewing available evidence, we then propose that prevailing views on pertussis epidemiology are inconsistent with both historical and contemporary data. Indeed, we summarize epidemiological evidence showing that natural infection and vaccination both appear to provide long-term protection against transmission and disease, so that previously infected or vaccinated adults contribute little to overall transmission at a population level. Finally, we identify several promising avenues that may lead to a consistent explanation of global pertussis epidemiology and to more effective control strategies.
Project description:Pertussis is a highly infectious respiratory disease that is currently responsible for nearly 300,000 annual deaths worldwide, primarily in infants in developing countries. Despite sustained high vaccine uptake, a resurgence in pertussis incidence has been reported in a number of countries. This resurgence has led to critical questions regarding the transmission impacts of vaccination and pertussis immunology. We analyzed pertussis incidence in Thailand--both age-stratified and longitudinal aggregate reports--over the past 30 y. To dissect the contributions of waning pertussis immunity and repeat infections to pertussis epidemiology in Thailand following a pronounced increase in vaccine uptake, we used likelihood-based statistical inference methods to evaluate the support for multiple competing transmission models. We found that, in contrast to other settings, there is no evidence for pertussis resurgence in Thailand, with each model examined pointing to a substantial rise in herd immunity over the past 30 y. Using a variety of empirical metrics, we verified our findings by documenting signatures of changing herd immunity over the study period. Importantly, this work leads to the conclusion that repeat infections have played little role in shaping pertussis epidemiology in Thailand. Our results are surprisingly emphatic in support of measurable impact of herd immunity given the uncertainty associated with pertussis epidemiology.
Project description:Bordetella pertussis, the causative agent of whooping cough, has experienced a resurgence in the past 15 years, despite the existence of both whole-cell and acellular vaccines. Here, we performed whole genome sequencing analysis of 149 clinical strains, provided by the National Institute of Infectious Diseases (NIID), Japan, isolated in 1982-2014, after Japan became the first country to adopt acellular vaccines against B. pertussis. Additionally, we sequenced 39 strains provided by the Konan Kosei Hospital in Aichi prefecture, Japan, isolated in 2008-2013. The genome sequences afforded insight into B. pertussis genome variability and population dynamics in Japan, and revealed that the B. pertussis population in Japan was characterized by two major clades that divided more than 40?years ago. The pertactin gene was disrupted in about 20?% of the 149 NIID isolates, by either a deletion within the signal sequence (?SS) or the insertion of IS element IS481 (prn?::?IS481). Phylogeny suggests that the parent clones for these isolates originated in Japan. Divergence dating traced the first generation of the pertactin-deficient mutants in Japan to around 1990, and indicated that strains containing the alternative pertactin allele prn2 may have appeared in Japan around 1974. Molecular clock data suggested that observed fluctuations in B. pertussis population size may have coincided with changes in vaccine usage in the country. The continuing failure to eradicate the disease warrants an exploration of novel vaccine compositions.
Project description:Despite high vaccination coverage, pertussis is on the rise in many countries including Czech Republic. To better understand B. pertussis resurgence we compared the changes in genome structures between Czech vaccine and circulating strains and subsequently, we determined how these changes translated into global transcriptomic and proteomic profiles. The whole-genome sequencing revealed that both historical and recent isolates of B. pertussis display substantial variation in genome organization and cluster separately. The RNA-seq and LC-MS/MS analyses indicate that these variations translated into discretely separated transcriptomic and proteomic profiles. Compared to vaccine strains, recent isolates displayed increased expression of flagellar genes and decreased expression of polysaccharide capsule operon. Czech strains (Bp46, K10, Bp155, Bp318 and Bp6242)exhibited increased expression of T3SS and sulphate metabolism genes when compared to Tohama I. In spite of 50 years of vaccination the Czech vaccine strains (VS67, VS393 and VS401) differ from recent isolates to a lesser extent than from another vaccine strain Tohama I.
Project description:Pertussis incidence has been rising in some countries, including the UK, despite sustained high vaccine coverage. We questioned whether it is possible to explain the resurgence without recourse to complex hypotheses about pathogen evolution, subclinical infections, or trends in surveillance efficiency. In particular, we investigated the possibility that the resurgence is a consequence of the legacy of incomplete pediatric immunization, in the context of cohort structure and age-dependent transmission. We constructed a model of pertussis transmission in England and Wales based on data on age-specific contact rates and historical vaccine coverage estimates. We evaluated the agreement between model-predicted and observed patterns of age-specific pertussis incidence under a variety of assumptions regarding the duration of immunity. Under the assumption that infection-derived immunity is complete and lifelong, and regardless of the duration of vaccine-induced immunity, the model consistently predicts a resurgence of pertussis incidence comparable to that which has been observed. Interestingly, no resurgence is predicted when infection- and vaccine-derived immunities wane at the same rate. These results were qualitatively insensitive to rates of primary vaccine failure. We conclude that the alarming resurgence of pertussis among adults and adolescents in Britain and elsewhere may simply be a legacy of historically inadequate coverage employing imperfect vaccines. Indeed, we argue that the absence of resurgence at this late date would be more surprising. Our analysis shows that careful accounting for age dependence in contact rates and susceptibility is prerequisite to the identification of which features of pertussis epidemiology want additional explanation.
Project description:The genome of Bordetella pertussis is complex, with high G+C content and many repeats, each longer than 1000?bp. Long-read sequencing offers the opportunity to produce single-contig B. pertussis assemblies using sequencing reads which are longer than the repetitive sections, with the potential to reveal genomic features which were previously unobservable in multi-contig assemblies produced by short-read sequencing alone. We used an R9.4 MinION flow cell and barcoding to sequence five B. pertussis strains in a single sequencing run. We then trialled combinations of the many nanopore user community-built long-read analysis tools to establish the current optimal assembly pipeline for B. pertussis genome sequences. This pipeline produced closed genome sequences for four strains, allowing visualization of inter-strain genomic rearrangement. Read mapping to the Tohama I reference genome suggests that the remaining strain contains an ultra-long duplicated region (almost 200?kbp), which was not resolved by our pipeline; further investigation also revealed that a second strain that was seemingly resolved by our pipeline may contain an even longer duplication, albeit in a small subset of cells. We have therefore demonstrated the ability to resolve the structure of several B. pertussis strains per single barcoded nanopore flow cell, but the genomes with highest complexity (e.g. very large duplicated regions) remain only partially resolved using the standard library preparation and will require an alternative library preparation method. For full strain characterization, we recommend hybrid assembly of long and short reads together; for comparison of genome arrangement, assembly using long reads alone is sufficient.