The highly successful human pathogen Mycobacterium tuberculosis has an extremely low level of genetic variation, which suggests that the entire population resulted from clonal expansion following an evolutionary bottleneck around 35,000 y ago. Here, we show that this population constitutes just the visible tip of a much broader progenitor species, whose… (More)
Mycobacterium tuberculosis remains a major cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Studies have reported human pathogens to have geographically structured population genetics, some of which have been linked to ancient human migrations. However, no study has addressed the potential evolutionary consequences of such longstanding human-pathogen… (More)
We give an update on the worldwide spoligotype database, which now contains 3,319 spoligotype patterns of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in 47 countries, with 259 shared types, i.e., identical spoligotypes shared by two or more patient isolates. The 259 shared types contained a total of 2,779 (84%) of all the isolates. Seven major genetic groups represented 37%… (More)
Although India has the highest prevalence of tuberculosis (TB) worldwide, the genetic diversity of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in India is largely unknown. A collection of 91 isolates originating from 12 different regions spread across the country were analyzed by genotyping using 21 loci with variable-number tandem repeats (VNTRs), by spoligotyping, by… (More)
We present a short summary of recent observations on the global distribution of the major clades of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex, the causative agent of tuberculosis. This global distribution was defined by data-mining of an international spoligotyping database, SpolDB3. This database contains 11708 patterns from as many clinical isolates… (More)
Supplementary Fig. 1. Large genomic diversity of smooth tubercle bacilli (STB). AseI restriction fragments separated by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) of selected STB strains.
I n his Opinion , Noel Smith questions that the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTBC) is a successful clone that emerged from a much broader and ancient mycobacterial species, whose extant representatives are Mycobacterium canettii and other smooth tubercle bacilli . He suggests that our conclusion is weak because he sees it as solely based on… (More)