Comprehensive genomics depict accessory genes encoding pathogenicity and biofilm determinants in Enterococcus faecalis.

Future Medicine  02 February 2021 |  

Karthika Suryaletha, Sivakumar K Chandrika & Sabu Thomas


Enterococcus faecalis is a leading nosocomial pathogen in biofilm-associated polymicrobial infections. The study aims to understand pathogenicity and biofilm determinants of the pathogen by genome analysis.


Genome sequencing of a strong biofilm forming clinical isolate Enterococcus faecalis SK460 devoid of Fsr quorum-signaling system, was performed and comparative genomics was carried out among a set of pathogenic biofilm formers and nonpathogenic weak biofilm formers.


Analysis revealed a pool of virulence and adhesion related factors associated with pathogenicity. Absence of CRISPR-Cas system facilitated acquisition of pheromone responsive plasmid, pathogenicity island and phages. Comprehensive analysis identified a subset of accessory genes encoding polysaccharide lyase, sugar phosphotransferase system, phage proteins and transcriptional regulators exclusively in pathogenic biofilm formers.


The study identified a set of genes specific to pathogenic biofilm formers and these can act as targets which in turn help to develop future treatment endeavors against enterococcal infections.


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