PCR based differentiation between Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis strains isolated from humans and horses

Comp Immunol Microbiol Infect Dis. 2014 May;37(3):169-72. doi: 10.1016/j.cimid.2014.04.001. Epub 2014 Apr 26.


Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis (SDSE) can be severely pathogenic in humans and is increasingly isolated from horses with respiratory, reproductive or other diseases, although it is often considered a commensal bacterium. Here a PCR protocol is described for identifying SDSE recovered from humans. A multiplex PCR targeting the 16S rRNA and the streptokinase precursor gene has been optimized for differentiating between SDSE strains isolated from humans and those isolated from horses. Previously, the sequence of the streptokinase precursor gene of SDSE recovered from horses has been found in two human cases of pneumonia in Japan. Although further evaluation is required, the findings of this study suggest that SDSE strains are host-specific and this multiplex PCR protocol can be useful in further epidemiological studies and for investigating the zoonotic potential of SDSE.

Keywords: Dog; Horse; Humans; PCR; Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bacterial Typing Techniques
  • Dogs
  • Genes, Bacterial*
  • Horses
  • Host Specificity
  • Humans
  • Multiplex Polymerase Chain Reaction / methods*
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 16S / genetics*
  • Streptococcus / classification
  • Streptococcus / genetics*
  • Streptococcus / isolation & purification
  • Streptokinase / genetics*


  • RNA, Ribosomal, 16S
  • Streptokinase