Table_2_Salmonella Serotyping; Comparison of the Traditional Method to a Microarray-Based Method and an in silico Platform Using Whole Genome Sequencing Data.docx
Salmonella is one of the most common causes of food-borne diseases worldwide. While Salmonella molecular subtyping by Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) is increasingly used for outbreak and source tracking investigations, serotyping remains as a first-line characterization of Salmonella isolates. The traditional phenotypic method for serotyping is logistically challenging, as it requires the use of more than 150 specific antisera and well trained personnel to interpret the results. Consequently, it is not a routine method for the majority of laboratories. Several rapid molecular methods targeting O and H loci or surrogate genomic markers have been developed as alternative solutions. With the expansion of WGS, in silico Salmonella serotype prediction using WGS data is available. Here, we compared a microarray method using molecular markers, the Check and Trace Salmonella assay (CTS) and a WGS-based serotype prediction tool that targets molecular determinants of serotype (SeqSero) to the traditional phenotypic method using 100 strains representing 45 common and uncommon serotypes. Compared to the traditional method, the CTS assay correctly serotyped 97% of the strains, four strains gave a double serotype prediction. Among the inconclusive data, one strain was not predicted and two strains were incorrectly identified. SeqSero was evaluated with two versions (SeqSero 1 and the alpha test version of SeqSero 2). The correct antigenic formula was predicted by SeqSero 1 for 96 and 95% of strains using raw reads and assembly, respectively. However, 34 and 33% of these predictions included multiple serotypes by raw reads and assembly. With raw reads, one strain was not identified and three strains were discordant with phenotypic serotyping result. With assembly, three strains were not predicted and two strains were incorrectly predicted. While still under development, SeqSero 2 maintained the accuracy of antigenic formula prediction at 98% and reduced multiple serotype prediction rate to 13%. One strain had no prediction and one strain was incorrectly predicted. Our study indicates that the CTS assay is a good alternative for routine laboratories as it is an easy to use method with a short turn-around-time. SeqSero is a reliable replacement for phenotypic serotyping if WGS is routinely implemented.