HOME   |    PDF   |   


Assigning new supergroups V and W to the Wolbachia diversity



Amresh Kumar Sharma & Anup Som*



Centre of Bioinformatics, Institute of Interdisciplinary Studies, University of Allahabad, Prayagraj 211002, India; *Corresponding author



AKS: amresharma1@gmail.com

Anup Som: E-mail: som.anup@gmail.com & asom@allduniv.ac.in


Article Type

Research Article



Received March 1, 2023; Revised March 31, 2023; Accepted March 31, 2023, Published March 31, 2023



Wolbachia are endosymbiotic and alphaproteobacteria that belong to the order Rickettsiales. They are known to infect half of the insect population and cause host manipulation, and have been categorized into 19 monophyletic lineages called supergroups. Recently, two strains, wCfeJ and wCfeT were isolated from cat fleas (Ctenocephalides felis), but their supergroup relationships were not assigned. In this article, we have attempted to classify these two novel strains and establish their evolutionary lineage (i.e., supergroup designation). For this we performed 16S rRNA similarity analysis and reconstructed 16S rRNA phylogeny of 52 Wolbachia strains (including two novel strains) belong to 19 supergroups. We also performed average nucleotide identity (ANI) and digital DNA-DNA hybridization (dDDH) studies to measure genomic similarity between the two novel genomes. The results revealed that 16S rRNA similarity between the two novel strains is 97.94%, which is below the threshold value of 98.6% and phylogeny shows that they are placed at the two different positions (i.e., showing distinct evolutionary lineages). Further, genomic similarity analysis revealed that the novel genomes have ANI and dDDH values 79% and 22.4% respectively, which were below the threshold value of ANI (95%) and dDDH (70%). These results suggested that the novel strains neither shared a species boundary between them nor with any other previously identified supergroups, which designate them as two new supergroups, namely supergroup V (strain wCfeJ) and supergroup W (strain wCfeT). 



Wolbachia; Supergroups; 16S rRNA, Phylogeny; Average nucleotide identity (ANI); digital DNA-DNA hybridization (dDDH).



Sharma & Som, Bioinformation 19(3): 336-340 (2023)


Edited by

P Kangueane






Biomedical Informatics



This is an Open Access article which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. This is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License.