Social structure and Escherichia coli sharing in a group-living wild primate, Verreaux’s sifakaReport as inadecuate




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BMC Ecology

, 16:6

Behavioral and physiological ecology

Abstract

BackgroundEpidemiological models often use information on host social contacts to predict the potential impact of infectious diseases on host populations and the efficiency of control measures. It can be difficult, however, to determine whether social contacts are actually meaningful predictors of transmission. We investigated the role of host social structure in the transmission of Escherichia coli in a wild population of primates, Verreaux’s sifakas Propithecus verreauxi. Using multilocus sequence typing MLST, we compared genetic similarities between E. coli isolates from different individuals and groups to infer transmission pathways.

ResultsCorrelation of social and transmission networks revealed that membership to the same group significantly predicted sharing of E. coli MLST sequence types ST. Intergroup encounter rate and a measure of space-use sharing provided equally potent explanations for type sharing between social groups when closely related STs were taken into account, whereas animal age, sex and dispersal history had no influence. No antibiotic resistance was found, suggesting low rates of E. coli spillover from humans into this arboreal species.

ConclusionsWe show that patterns of E. coli transmission reflect the social structure of this group-living lemur species. We discuss our results in the light of the species’ ecology and propose scent-marking, a type of social contact not considered in previous epidemiological studies, as a likely route of transmission between groups. However, further studies are needed to explicitly test this hypothesis and to further elucidate the relative roles of direct contact and environmental transmission in pathogen transfer.

KeywordsFecal-oral disease transmission Propithecus verreauxi Escherichia coli Multilocus sequence typing Scent-marking Social contacts Social network analysis Spillover AbbreviationsDICdeviance information criterion

E. coliEscherichia coli

ESBLextended-spectrum beta-lactamase

EUCASTEuropean Committee on Antimicrobial Susceptibility Testing

GLMMgeneral linear mixed model

GPSglobal positioning system

hhours

hahectare

kmkilometer

MALDI-ToF MSmatrix-assisted laser desorption ionization time-of-flight mass-spectrometry

minminutes

MLSTmulti-locus sequence typing

STsequence type

UDOIutilization distribution overlap index

Electronic supplementary materialThe online version of this article doi:10.1186-s12898-016-0059-y contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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Author: Andrea Springer - Alexander Mellmann - Claudia Fichtel - Peter M. Kappeler

Source: https://link.springer.com/







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