The complete genome sequence of Mycobacterium bovis

Thierry Garnier, Karin Eiglmeier, Jean Christophe Camus, Nadine Medina, Huma Mansoor, Melinda Pryor, Stephanie Duthoy, Sophie Grondin, Celine Lacroix, Christel Monsempe, Sylvie Simon, Barbara Harris, Rebecca Atkin, Jon Doggett, Rebecca Mayes, Lisa Keating, Paul R. Wheeler, Julian Parkhill, Bart G. Barrell, Stewart T. ColeStephen V. Gordon*, R. Glyn Hewinson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

784 Citations (Scopus)


Mycobacterium bovis is the causative agent of tuberculosis in a range of animal species and man, with worldwide annual losses to agriculture of $3 billion. The human burden of tuberculosis caused by the bovine tubercle bacillus is still largely unknown. M. bovis was also the progenitor for the M. bovis bacillus Calmette-Guérin vaccine strain, the most widely used human vaccine. Here we describe the 4,345,492-bp genome sequence of M. bovis AF2122/97 and its comparison with the genomes of Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Mycobacterium leprae. Strikingly, the genome sequence of M. bovis is >99.95% identical to that of M. tuberculosis, but deletion of genetic information has led to a reduced genome size. Comparison with M. leprae reveals a number of common gene losses, suggesting the removal of functional redundancy. Cell wall components and secreted proteins show the greatest variation, indicating their potential role in host-bacillus interactions or immune evasion. Furthermore, there are no genes unique to M. bovis, implying that differential gene expression may be the key to the host tropisms of human and bovine bacilli. The genome sequence therefore offers major insight on the evolution, host preference, and pathobiology of M. bovis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7877-7882
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 24 Jun 2003


Dive into the research topics of 'The complete genome sequence of Mycobacterium bovis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this