Persistent Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi sub-populations within host interrogated by whole genome sequencing and metagenomics

PLoS One. 2023 Aug 23;18(8):e0289070. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0289070. eCollection 2023.


Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi (S. Typhi) causes typhoid fever and, in some cases, chronic carriage after resolution of acute disease. This study examined sequential isolates of S. Typhi from a single host with persistent asymptomatic infection. These isolates, along with another S. Typhi isolate recovered from a household contact with typhoid fever, were subjected to whole genome sequencing and analysis. In addition, direct sequencing of the bile fluid from the host with persistent infection was also performed. Comparative analysis of isolates revealed three sub-populations of S. Typhi with distinct genetic patterns. Metagenomic sequencing recognised only two of the three sub-populations within the bile fluid. The detection and investigation of insertion sequences IS10R and associated deletions complemented analysis of single nucleotide polymorphisms. These findings improve our understanding of within-host dynamics of S. Typhi in cases of persistent infection and inform epidemiological investigations of transmission events associated with chronic carriers.

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Metagenomics
  • Persistent Infection
  • Salmonella typhi* / genetics
  • Typhoid Fever*
  • Whole Genome Sequencing

Grants and funding

The author(s) received no specific funding for this work.