University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Departmental Seminar Programme, Department of Veterinary Medicine > Shuffling the pack: the dynamic genome of Bordetella pertussis.

Shuffling the pack: the dynamic genome of Bordetella pertussis.

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  • UserDr Andrew Preston, The Milner Centre for Evolution and Department of Biology and Biochemistry, University of Bath
  • ClockWednesday 03 February 2021, 16:00-17:00
  • HouseVenue to be confirmed.

If you have a question about this talk, please contact Fiona Roby.

B. pertussis is the key causative agent of whooping cough, or pertussis, that is re-emerging globally despite high levels of vaccination. For decades, B. pertussis was described as a monomorphic pathogen, as numerous studies identified relatively low rates of SNP mutations and a distinct lack of gene content variation among strains. However, recently, distinct phenotypic differences between isolates are emerging that are not easily explained by current understanding of B. pertussis genetic diversity.

Here I will present my group’s work revealing that B. pertussis genome structure is highly variable between strains, with extensive intra-genomic recombination resulting in inversions and large duplications (and higher copy number amplifications). This reorganisation of structure is dynamic, even detectable during laboratory growth of cultures. Gene expression is affected by genome structure changes and currently we are developing novel GWAS approaches that incorporate genome organisation to define genotype-phenotype relationships for B. pertussis.

Genome organisation is a largely ignored facet of bacterial genetic diversity, but we provide evidence that variation at the level of genome structure is widespread among bacteria.

Chaired by Dr Raymond Bujdoso

This talk is part of the Departmental Seminar Programme, Department of Veterinary Medicine series.

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