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Whole genome enrichment approach for genomic surveillance of Toxoplasma gondii

NCJ Number
Date Published
7 pages

This study explores a whole genome enrichment approach for genomic surveillance of Toxoplasma gondii.          


The authors of this study previously developed the Circular Nucleic acid Enrichment Reagent (CNER) method to make whole genome enrichment (WGE) baits for difficult-to-grow bacterial pathogens. Here, the researchers made WGE-CNERs for T. gondii to demonstrate the use of the CNER method to make baits to enrich the large genomes of water and foodborne protozoan pathogens. By sequencing, the researchers detected as few as 50 parasites spiked in an oyster hemolymph matrix. The authors discuss the use of WGE-CNERs for genomic surveillance of food and waterborne pathogens. Pathogenic bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoa can cause food and waterborne diseases. Surveillance methods must therefore screen for these pathogens at various stages of water distribution and of food from production to consumption. Detection using nucleic acid amplification methods offer rapid identification, but such methods have limited utility for characterizing populations, variant types or virulence traits of pathogens. Whole genome sequencing (WGS) can be used to determine this information. However, pathogens must be isolated and cultured to yield sufficient DNA for WGS, which is laborious or not feasible for certain stages of parasites like oocysts of Toxoplasma gondii. WGE using CNERs facilitates direct sequencing of pathogens from samples without the need to isolate and grow them. (Published Abstract Provided)

Date Published: January 1, 2024