Isolation and genome sequencing of Staphylococcus schleiferi subspecies coagulans from Antarctic and North Seal seals

G. Foster, A Robb, Gavin Paterson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Reports on the commensal organism and opportunistic pathogen Staphylococcus schleiferi have largely considered isolates
from humans and companion dogs. Two subspecies are recognized: the coagulase-negative S. schleiferi ssp. schleiferi, typically seen in humans, and the coagulase-positive S. schleiferi ssp. coagulans, typically seen in dogs. In this study, we report the isolation, genome sequencing and comparative genomics of three S. schleiferi ssp. coagulans isolates from mouth samples from two
species of healthy, free-living Antarctic seals, southern elephant seals (Mirounga leonina) and Antarctic fur seals (Arctocephalus
gazella), in the South Orkney Islands, Antarctica, and three isolates from post-mortem samples from grey seals (Halichoerus
grypus) in Scotland, UK. This is the first report of S. schleiferi ssp. coagulans isolation from Antarctic fur seal and grey seal.
The Antarctic fur seal represents the first isolation of S. schleiferi ssp. coagulans from the family Otariidae, while the grey seal
represents the first isolation from a pinniped in the Northern Hemisphere. We compare seal, dog and human isolates from both
S. schleiferi subspecies in the first genome-based phylogenetic analysis of the species.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAccess Microbiology
Early online date21 Aug 2020
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 21 Aug 2020


  • bacterial genomics
  • coagulase-positive staphylococci
  • otariid
  • seals
  • Staphylococcus schleiferi

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