Whole genome sequence analysis of Mycobacterium suricattae

Anzaan Dippenaar, Sven David Charles Parsons, Samantha Leigh Sampson, Ruben Gerhard Van Der Merwe, Julian Ashley Drewe, Abdallah Abdallah, Kabengele Keith Siame, Nicolaas Claudius Gey Van Pittius, Paul David Van Helden, Arnab Pain, Robin Mark Warren

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Tuberculosis occurs in various mammalian hosts and is caused by a range of different lineages of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTBC). A recently described member, Mycobacterium suricattae, causes tuberculosis in meerkats (Suricata suricatta) in Southern Africa and preliminary genetic analysis showed this organism to be closely related to an MTBC pathogen of rock hyraxes (Procavia capensis), the dassie bacillus. Here we make use of whole genome sequencing to describe the evolution of the genome of M. suricattae, including known and novel regions of difference, SNPs and IS6110 insertion sites. We used genome-wide phylogenetic analysis to show that M. suricattae clusters with the chimpanzee bacillus, previously isolated from a chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) in West Africa. We propose an evolutionary scenario for the Mycobacterium africanum lineage 6 complex, showing the evolutionary relationship of M. africanum and chimpanzee bacillus, and the closely related members M. suricattae, dassie bacillus and Mycobacterium mungi.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)682-688
Number of pages7
Issue number6
StatePublished - Oct 21 2015

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledgements: This paper has relied on records of individual identities and/or life histories maintained by the Kalahari Meerkat Project, which has been supported by the European Research Council (Research Grant No. 294494 to T.H. Clutton-Brock since 1/7/2012) and the University of Zurich. This work was supported by the South African National Research Foundation (NRF), fund number 41744, South African Medical Research Council (MRC), Harry Crossley Foundation, Claude Leon Foundation, the Department of Biomedical Sciences, Stellenbosch University and King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST). S.L. Sampson is funded by the South African Research Chairs Initiative of the Department of Science and Technology and NRF of South Africa, award number UID 86539. Any opinion, finding and conclusion or recommendation expressed in this material is that of the author(s) and the NRF does not accept any liability in this regard.


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