PloS one

Molecular and Phenotypic Characterization of Aerococcus viridans Associated with Subclinical Bovine Mastitis.

PMID 25919289


Aerococcus viridans is a wide spread bacterium in the environment and clinically this organism is associated with different diseases in animals and humans. However, the geno- and phenotypic characterization of A. viridans associated with bovine mastitis has not yet been reported. The objectives of this study were to investigate the genetic and phenotypic diversity of A. viridans isolates using three different molecular methods including 16S rRNA gene sequencing, pulsed-field gel electrophoresis and random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) along with biochemical tests, including antimicrobial susceptibility test. In total, 60 A. viridans strains were cultured from dairy herds presenting with subclinical mastitis. The results of biochemical tests revealed that most of the isolates (75.0%) were accurately identified by API Rapid 20 Strep system and the majority of A. viridans strains (96.7%) were found to be catalase negative, while two (3.3%) isolates were weakly positive. All isolates were resistant to trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, followed by streptomycin (96.7%), tetracycline (65.0%) and clindamycin (56.7%) by minimum inhibition concentration-determining broth microdilution technique. As compared to the sequence of 16S rRNA gene, both PFGE and RAPD showed their capacities to discriminate the intra-species diversity of A. viridans. Furthermore, most of the isolates obtained from the same herd or region belonged to the same major RAPD group, which indicated that RAPD is an appropriate assay for tracking the origins of isolates and epidemiological studies of A. viridans. This is a novel approach to use three molecular techniques and to compare their efficiency regarding the genetic diversity of A. viridans. The data suggest that A. viridans associated with subclinical mastitis has a considerable phenotypic and genotypic diversity.