Genetic characterization of Trichomonas vaginalis isolates by use of multilocus sequence typing.
Cornelius DC., Robinson DA., Muzny CA., Mena LA., Aanensen DM., Lushbaugh WB., Meade JC.
In this study, we introduce a multilocus sequence typing (MLST) scheme, comprised of seven single-copy housekeeping genes, to genetically characterize Trichomonas vaginalis. Sixty-eight historical and recent isolates of T. vaginalis were sampled from the American Type Culture Collection and female patients at area health care facilities, respectively, to assess the usefulness of this typing method. Forty-three polymorphic nucleotide sites, 51 different alleles, and 60 sequence types were distinguished among the 68 isolates, revealing a diverse T. vaginalis population. Moreover, this discriminatory MLST scheme retains the ability to identify epidemiologically linked isolates such as those collected from sexual partners. Population genetic and phylogenetic analyses determined that T. vaginalis population structure is strongly influenced by recombination and is composed of two separate populations that may be nonclonal. MLST is useful for investigating the epidemiology, genetic diversity, and population structure of T. vaginalis.