Genetic diversity and relationships among 42 strains of Citrobacter diversus recovered from the cerebrospinal fluid of human infants with meningitis and from other clinical sources in the United States were estimated on the basis of electrophoretically detectable allelic variation in 20 genes encoding metabolic enzymes. Sixteen distinctive multilocus enzyme genotypes were identified, among which the mean genetic diversity per locus was 0.244. The recovery of isolates of the same genotype in several regions of the United States and over periods as long as 20 years indicates that the population structure of C. diversus is clonal. There was little association between multilocus enzyme genotype and biotype, piliation, or presence of a 32-kilodalton outer membrane protein. The observation that the 32-kilodalton outer membrane protein, which is expressed predominantly by strains recovered from infants with meningitis, occurs in a variety of genotypically diverse clones belonging to several phylogenetic lineages supports the hypothesis that this protein confers virulence.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Microbiology (medical)