Biological and Epidemiological Consequences of MTBC Diversity.
Published on Jan 1, 2017in Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology2.126
· DOI :10.1007/978-3-319-64371-7_5
Tuberculosis is caused by different groups of bacteria belonging to the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTBC). The combined action of human factors, environmental conditions and bacterial virulence determine the extent and form of human disease. MTBC virulence is a composite of different clinical phenotypes such as transmission rate and disease severity among others. Clinical phenotypes are also influenced by cellular and immunological phenotypes. MTBC phenotypes are determined by the genotype, therefore finding genotypes responsible for clinical phenotypes would allow discovering MTBC virulence factors. Different MTBC strains display different cellular and clinical phenotypes. Strains from Lineage 5 and Lineage 6 are metabolically different, grow slower, and are less virulent. Also, at least certain groups of Lineage 2 and Lineage 4 strains are more virulent in terms of disease severity and human-to-human transmission. Because phenotypic differences are ultimately caused by genotypic differences, different genomic loci have been related to various cellular and clinical phenotypes. However, defining the impact of specific bacterial genomic loci on virulence when other bacterial determinants, human and environmental factors are also impacting the phenotype would contribute to a better knowledge of tuberculosis virulence and ultimately benefit tuberculosis control.