Genomic characterization of Listeria monocytogenes and Listeria innocua isolated from milk and dairy samples in Ethiopia

Xiaoyuan Wei, Anwar Hassen, Karen McWilliams, Karen Pietrzen, Taejung Chung, Marysabel Méndez Acevedo, Tyler Chandross-Cohen, Edward G. Dudley, Jessie Vipham, Hassen Mamo, Tesfaye Sisay Tessema, Ashagrie Zewdu, Jasna Kovac

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Listeriosis caused by Listeria monocytogenes often poses a significant threat to vulnerable populations. Dairy products have been implicated in outbreaks of listeriosis worldwide. In Ethiopia, studies have identified Listeria spp. and L. monocytogenes in various dairy products, but the genetic diversity and phylogenetic relationships of these bacteria remain largely unknown in the low- and middle-income countries. Therefore, we conducted whole-genome sequencing on 15 L. monocytogenes and 55 L. innocua isolates obtained from different levels of the dairy supply chains across three regions in Ethiopia. Genomes were assembled and used for MLST genotyping and single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) analysis to infer phylogenetic relationships. We identified a total of 3 L. monocytogenes (i.e., 2, 145, and 18) and 12 L. innocua (i.e., 1489, 1619, 603, 537, 1010, 3186, 492, 3007, 1087, 474, 1008, and 637) MLST sequence types among the studied isolates. Some of these sequence types showed region-specific occurrence, while others were broadly distributed across regions. Through high-quality SNP analysis, we found that among 13 L. monocytogenes identified as ST 2, 11 of them were highly similar with low genetic variation, differing by only 1 to 10 SNPs, suggesting potential selection in the dairy food supply chain. The L. innocua isolates also exhibited low intra-ST genetic variation with only 0–10 SNP differences, except for the ST 1619, which displayed a greater diversity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number12
JournalBMC Genomic Data
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2024

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Genetics
  • Health Informatics

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