5 years ago

Straight from the Horse's "Mouth": Genomic Epidemiology of an Icelandic Equine Epidemic.

Despite tight biosecurity measures, an outbreak of respiratory disease rapidly spread across the Icelandic equine population in 2010. Horse transportation was brought to a halt in order to contain the spread of the infectious agent. In a recent article, Björnsdóttir and colleagues (S. Björnsdóttir et al., mBio 8:e00826-17, 2017, https://doi.org/10.1128/mBio.00826-17) employ the power and resolution of "genomic epidemiology," the combination of whole genomic sequencing and epidemiological approaches, to examine the source and spread of the outbreak. Intriguingly, the outbreak was not viral in origin, but linked to a bacterial "commensal" Streptococcus equi subsp. zooepidemicus infection. A national sampling strategy coupled with population genomics revealed that the outbreak was most likely driven by a S. equi subsp. zooepidemicus sequence type 209 (ST209) infection that spread nationally from a single source. This retrospective study demonstrates the power of genomics applied on a national scale to unravel the cause of a significant biosecurity threat.

Publisher URL: http://doi.org/10.1128/mBio.01613-17

DOI: 10.1128/mBio.01613-17

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