Characterization of clinical Ralstonia strains and their taxonomic position

Ad C Fluit, Jumamurat R Bayjanov, María Díez Aguilar, Rafael Cantón, Michael M Tunney, J Stuart Elborn, Mireille van Westreenen, Miquel B Ekkelenkamp

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12 Citations (Scopus)
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To improve understanding of the role of Ralstonia in cystic fibrosis (CF), whole genomes of 18 strains from clinical samples were sequenced using Illumina technology. Sequences were analysed by core genome Multi-Locus Sequence Typing, Average Nucleotide Identity based on BLAST (ANIb), RAST annotation, and by ResFinder. Phylogenetic analysis was performed for the 16S rRNA gene, and the OXA-22 and OXA-60 ß-lactamase families. The minimal inhibitory concentrations (MICs) were determined using broth microdilution. ANIb data for the 18 isolates and 54 strains from GenBank, supported by phylogenetic analysis, showed that 8 groups of clusters (A-H), as well as subgroups that should be considered as species or subspecies. Groups A-C contain strains previously identified as Ralstonia solanacearum and Ralstonia pseudosolanacearum. We propose that group A is a novel species. Group B and C are Ralstonia syzygii, Ralstonia solanacearum, respectively. Group D is composed of Ralstonia mannitolilytica and Group E of Ralstonia pickettii. Group F and G should be considered novel species. Group H strains belong to R. insidiosa. OXA-22 and OXA-60 family ß-lactamases were encoded by all strains. Co-trimoxazole generally showed high activity with low MICs (≤1 mg/l) as did ciprofloxacin (≤0.12 mg/l). MICs against the other antibiotics were more variable, but generally high. RAST annotation revealed limited differences between the strains, and virulence factors were not identified. The taxonomy of the genus Ralstonia is in need of revision, but sequencing additional isolates is needed. Antibiotic resistance levels are high. Annotation did not identify potential virulence factors.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAntonie Van Leeuwenhoek
Early online date31 Aug 2021
Publication statusEarly online date - 31 Aug 2021


  • Infection
  • Ralstonia
  • Taxonomy
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Whole genome sequence


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