Diversity and pathogenesis of Staphylococcus aureus from bovine mastitis: current understanding and future perspectives

Bruno Campos, Amy Pickering, Lis Souza Rocha, Ananda Pereira Aguilar, Mary Hellen Fabres-Klein, Tiago Antônio de Oliveira Mendes, Ross Fitzgerald, Andrea de Oliveira Barros Ribon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Staphylococcus aureus is a leading cause of bovine mastitis worldwide. Despite some improved understanding of disease pathogenesis, progress towards new methods for the control of intramammary infections (IMI) has been limited, particularly in the field of vaccination. Although herd management programs have helped to reduce the number of clinical cases, S. aureus mastitis remains a major disease burden. This review summarizes the past 16 years of research on bovine S. aureus population genetics, and molecular pathogenesis that have been conducted worldwide. We describe the diversity of S. aureus associated with bovine mastitis and the geographical distribution of S. aureus clones in different continents. We also describe studies investigating the evolution of bovine S. aureus and the importance of host-adaptation in its emergence as a mastitis pathogen. The available information on the prevalence of virulence determinants and their functional relevance during the pathogenesis of bovine mastitis are also discussed. Although traits such as biofilm formation and innate immune evasion are critical for the persistence of bacteria, the current understanding of the key host-pathogen interactions that determine the outcome of S. aureus IMI is very limited. We suggest that greater investment in research into the genetic and molecular basis of bovine S. aureus pathogenesis is essential for the identification of novel therapeutic and vaccine targets.
Original languageEnglish
Article number115
JournalBMC Veterinary Research
Issue number1
Early online date24 Mar 2022
Publication statusPublished - 24 Mar 2022

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • bovine mastitis
  • clonal complexes
  • pathogenesis


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