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Spoligotyping analysis of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa area, Pakistan

Authors Ali S, Khan MT, Anwar Sheed K, Khan MM, Hasan F

Received 14 December 2018

Accepted for publication 5 April 2019

Published 20 May 2019 Volume 2019:12 Pages 1363—1369


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Colin Mak

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Eric Nulens

Sajid Ali,1 Muhammad Tahir Khan,2 Khan Anwar Sheed,3 Muhammad Mumtaz Khan,4 Fariha Hasan1

1Department of Microbiology, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan; 2Department of Bioinformatics and Biosciences, Capital University of Science and Technology, Islamabad, Pakistan; 3Provincial TB Reference Laboratory, Provincial TB Control Program, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan; 4Department of Microbiology, University of Haripur, Haripur, Pakistan

Background: Spoligotyping is a reproducible, reverse hybridization approach for genotyping of Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTBC). Molecular typing of MTBC is helpful for understanding and controlling tuberculosis epidemics.
Methods: Spoligotyping was performed on 166 clinical isolates of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB) collected from 25 districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. Results were compared to SITVIT2, an online database developed by the Institut Pasteur de la Guadeloupe, France.
Results: Spoligotyping results showed that 145 strains (88%) displayed known patterns while 21 (12%) were new. Lineage 3/Central Asian strain (L3/CAS) was the predominant family (73%, χ2=19.9, P=0.001), followed by L2/Beijing (5.4%) and L4 (4.2%). L3/CAS1-Delhi was the major sublineage (82%) among the L3/CAS family (χ2=664, P=0.0001). Analysis showed that the majority of the clinical isolates with an unknown pattern had an evolutionary link with the L3/CAS strain, and nine (5.4%) of the unknown strains were epidemiologically linked and were tentatively named L3/CAS-KP (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa).
Conclusion: The present study demonstrated that L3/CAS is the predominant lineage of MTB, widely distributed in different areas of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. Spoligotyping patterns of some clinical isolates could not be matched to other reported patterns in an international database. Other tools, such as mycobacterial interspersed repetitive unit–variable number tandem repeat (MIRU-VNTR), will be helpful in future investigations into the epidemiological characteristics of clinical isolates in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

Keywords: spoligotyping, VNTR, L3/CAS, genotyping, molecular characterization, genetic diversity

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