African Journal of

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Biotechnol.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1684-5315
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJB
  • Start Year: 2002
  • Published Articles: 12240

Full Length Research Paper

Molecular serotype and evolutionary lineage of Listeria monocytogenes isolated from different Nigerian food items

Ogueri Nwaiwu
  • Ogueri Nwaiwu
  • 1Division of Food Sciences, School of Biosciences, University of Nottingham, Sutton Bonington Campus, LE12 5RD, College Road, Loughborough, Leicestershire, United Kingdom. 2Research Services Division, Alpha-Altis (UK) Ltd, Sir Colin Campbell Building, University of Nottingham Innovation Park, Triumph Road, Nottingham, NG7 2TU, United Kingdom.
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  •  Received: 24 November 2015
  •  Accepted: 08 April 2016
  •  Published: 27 April 2016


The molecular serotypes and the evolutionary lineage of Listeria monocytogenes isolated from various foods in Nigeria are yet to be documented. Consequently, popular uncooked food items known locally as Okazi Utazi, Onugbu, Ogbono, Garri and Egusi obtained from plants botanically known as Gnetum africanum, Gongronema latifolium, Vernonia amygdalina, Irvingia gabonensis, Manihot esculanta Crantz and Colocynthis Citrullus, respectively were analyzed. Molecular serotype of three chosen isolates was determined using multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) serotyping before analysis based on prfA virulence gene cluster of L. monocytogenes was carried out to establish the evolutionary lineage. There was no L. monocytogenes detected in foods from I. gabonensis, M. esculanta Crantz and C. citrullus. However, the vegetables from G. africanum, G. latifolium and V. amygdalina showed the presence of the organism and chromogenic tests carried out on the three strains chosen from oxford formulation media indicated that they were not other  non-pathogenic strains of Listeria. The V3 region of 16S rRNA gene of one strain showed that a close relative of the isolate is a strain implicated in an outbreak of listeriosis. Leafy vegetables could be a major vehicle for transmission of L. monocytogenes in Nigeria since this pathogenic bacterium occured in different vegetables analyzed.

Key words: Listeria monocytogenes, serotype, lineage, pathogenic potential, Nigerian food.