Genome Characterisation of Invasive Haemophilus influenzae in Pregnancy: The Noticeable Placental Tissue Tropism Is Distributed across the Species Rather Than Linked with Capsulation or Particular Clones

Niels Nørskov-Lauritsen, Rajesh Mohey, Dennis S Hansen, Liv Duus, Mohammad R Khalil, Stella J Wilfred, Stine Y Nielsen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Abstract

Pregnancy is associated with a 5-26 times increased risk of invasive Haemophilus influenzae infection and subsequent adverse pregnancy outcomes. Incidence rate and outcome are published in some regions, but the characterisation of bacterial isolates is limited. We performed comparative genomic analyses of isolates from 12 pregnancy-associated cases, cultured from maternal bacteraemia in pregnancy (nine), postpartum bacteraemia (one), neonatal bacteraemia (one), and placental tissue (one). In two bacteraemia cases, identical isolates were also cultured from cervical swabs. Eight cases occurred early in pregnancy (gestational week 7-26), and seven of them resulted in miscarriage or neonatal death. All bacterial genomes were devoid of capsule loci, and they were evenly distributed in the major phylogenetic group I of the species. The conspicuous tropism of H. influenzae for pregnancy and placental tissue is associated with the species rather than specific clonal subtypes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1345
JournalPathogens
Volume12
Issue number11
ISSN2076-0817
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 13 Nov 2023

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