Pneumococcal Serotypes Colonise the Nasopharynx in Children at Different Densities

Fernanda Rodrigues, Leon Danon, Begonia Morales-Aza, Paulina Sikora, Valtyr Thors, Muriel Ferreira, Katherine Gould, Jason Hinds, Adam Finn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)
288 Downloads (Pure)


Prevalence of pneumococcal serotypes in carriage and disease has been described but absolute serotype colonisation densities have not been reported. 515 paediatric nasal swab DNA extracts were subjected to lytA qPCR and molecular serotyping by microarray. Absolute serotype densities were derived from total pneumococcal density (qPCR cycle threshold and standard curve) and relative abundance (microarray) and varied widely. Compared to all serotype densities observed, the strongest evidence of differences was seen for serotypes 21 and 35B (higher) and 3, 38 and non-typeables (lower) (p<0.05) with a similar hierarchy when only a single serotype carriage was assessed. There was no evidence of any overall density differences between children with single or multiple serotypes detected but serotypes with mid-range densities were more prevalent. The hierarchy of distinct pneumococcal serotype carriage densities described here for the first time, may help explain the dynamics of transmission between children.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0163435
Number of pages8
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 30 Sep 2016


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