Repository logo
 

Dissemination of Mycobacterium abscessus via global transmission networks

Published version
Peer-reviewed

Change log

Authors

Bryant, Josephine M. 
Davidson, Rebecca M.  ORCID logo  https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7091-7963

Abstract

Abstract: Mycobacterium abscessus, a multidrug-resistant nontuberculous mycobacterium, has emerged as a major pathogen affecting people with cystic fibrosis (CF). Although originally thought to be acquired independently from the environment, most individuals are infected with one of several dominant circulating clones (DCCs), indicating the presence of global transmission networks of M. abscessus. How and when these clones emerged and spread globally is unclear. Here, we use evolutionary analyses of isolates from individuals both with and without CF to reconstruct the population history, spatiotemporal spread and recent transmission networks of the DCCs. We demonstrate synchronous expansion of six unrelated DCCs in the 1960s, a period associated with major changes in CF care and survival. Each of these clones has spread globally as a result of rare intercontinental transmission events. We show that the DCCs, but not environmentally acquired isolates, exhibit a specific smoking-associated mutational signature and that current transmission networks include individuals both with and without CF. We therefore propose that the DCCs initially emerged in non-CF populations but were then amplified and spread through the CF community. While individuals with CF are probably the most permissive host, non-CF individuals continue to play a key role in transmission networks and may facilitate long-distance transmission.

Description

Funder: Cystic Fibrosis Foundation (CF Foundation); doi: https://doi.org/10.13039/100000897

Keywords

Article, /631/326/325/2482, /631/326/421, /631/181/457/649, /45, /45/23, article

Journal Title

Nature Microbiology

Conference Name

Journal ISSN

2058-5276

Volume Title

6

Publisher

Nature Publishing Group UK
Sponsorship
Wellcome Trust (Wellcome) (107032/Z/15/Z)
Fondation Botnar (6063)