Submitted to: Current Innovations in Salmonella Molecular & Cellular Biology
Publication Type: Book / chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/16/2009
Publication Date: 1/1/2011
Citation: Guard, J. 2011. Evolutionary Trends Associated with Niche Specialization as Modelled by Whole Genome Analysis of Egg-contaminating Salmonella enterica serovar Enteritidis. In: Porwollik, S., editors. Salmonella: From Genome to Function. San Diego, CA:Caister Academic Press. p. 91-106. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: The mosaic nature of the Salmonella enterica genome facilitates its access to multiple environments. Many large scale genomic events have been described that contribute to the combinatorial complexity of the pathogenic Salmonellae. However, the impact of small scale genetic change occurring at the level of the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) on the emergence of niche specialization is just now becoming appreciated. This chapter describes concepts behind the evolution that culminated in the remarkable ability of Salmonella enterica serovar Enteritidis to contaminate and survive in the internal content of eggs produced by otherwise healthy hens. Evidence suggests that combinations of SNPs facilitate niche specialization by Salmonella enterica. However, few typing methods incorporate unbiased strategies for their detection. Selection of appropriate biological assays for ranking SNPs and combinations of SNPs for their impact on the ability of Salmonella enterica to propagate outbreaks, pandemics and disease will be a significant challenge in applying bioinformatics to improve the safety of the food supply.