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Theses

Sources des mycobactéries non-tuberculeuses dans les bassins versants

Abstract : Water and soil are considered as potential sources of nontuberculous mycobacteria (NTM) infections. Among human infections caused by environmental NTM, pulmonary infections and cutaneous infections are often described. However, lack of knowledge about their life cycle in the environment requires analytical tools, which are not currently adapted to these kinds of samples. The aim of this thesis is to propose bacteriological and molecular quantitative methods, in order to determine the sources of NTM in watersheds. Comparison of NTM isolation methods showed that treatment with cetylpyridinium chloride of water, followed by culture on a rich medium supplemented with antibiotic cocktail (polymyxin B, amphotericin, nalidixic acid, de trimethoprim, azlocillin) decreased the growth of nontarget microorganisms, while inhibiting less NTM than the other compared methods (Radomski et al. 2010 doi: 10.1128/AEM.00942-10). Although potentially pathogenic NTM species were isolated from surface water of the Seine River using these bacteriological tools, enumeration of NTM was not reproducible. Consequently, a quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) method was developed in order to enumerate Mycobacterium spp. in water (Radomski et al. 2010 doi: 10.1128/AEM.02659-09). This newly developed method, targeting 16S rRNA, was more specific than the two previously published qPCR methods targeting another 16S rRNA locus and the hsp65 gene (100% versus 44% and 91%, respectively). Comparison of DNA extraction methods showed that the enzymatic lysis and hexadecyltrimethylammonium bromide procedure was the most effective combination for mycobacterial DNA extraction with the aim to enumerate NTM in environmental samples by qPCR. Thus, these extraction and qPCR methods were used in order to study NTM sources in watersheds.Secondly, we studied three potential sources of NTM : one point source and two nonpoint sources. More precisely, a wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) was chosen as a potential point source of NTM and was studied according to indicators of fecal contamination and usually monitored parameters. NTM reached 5.52×105±3.97×105 copies/L in the influent of WWTP (84% of positive samples). They were not detected in the effluent after physico-chemical decantation and biofiltration, and were estimated at 1.04×106 ±1.75×106 copies/g in sludge (50% of positive samples). Most NTM (98±2%, i.e. 2.45±0.78 log10) were removed by the physical-chemical decantation, and the remaining NTM (0.74×104 ±1.40×104 copies/L) were removed by biofiltration (53% of positive samples). These results showed also that Mycobacterium, Escherichia coli and intestinal enterococci follow significantly different behaviors as hydrophobic, hydrophilic and intermediate models, respectively. Concerning the nonpoint sources, NTM were enumerated in a variety of rural and urban soils which were characterized by different physico-chemical parameters. The highest NTM densities were measured in peat forest soils (9.27×104±5.00×104 copies/g dw) and in lightly urbanized soils near a costal swamp (1.71×106±2.85×106 copies/g dw), whereas they were not detected in the other monitored soils. NTM density was significantly associated with soils near acidic areas and high moisture, organic matter, and iron content in soils. These results emphasized that NTM are dependent upon the production of surface and extracellular iron-binding compounds, and may mean that lightly urbanized area could be impacted by the proximity of the acidic swamp. In order to study another nonpoint source, NTM and other parameters were measured during wet events in surface water of Marne River and their main effluents. NTM density was estimated at 2.16×105±2.36×105 copies/L in about 20% of surface water samples, and NTM densites did not differ among rural and peri-urban sampling areas. Our results showed that the pluviometry and rain duration explained the decrease of detected NTM abundances in surface water during a slightly intense wet event (6.6 mm/h of cumulated rain during 5.5 h). These results emphasized that some tributaries of the Marne River may constitute a source of NTM, however their influence on NTM density in surface water of the Marne River decreased during the slightly intense wet event.In order to improve these applied studies, challenges dealing with pathogenic microorganism monitoring in environment were explored. Focusing on the most pathogenic NTM, M. avium, we discussed the challenges for detection and enumeration and proposed a guidance for the adaptation of clinical methods to environmental samples (Radomski et al. 2010 ed. A. Méndez-Vilas, Vol. 2). This guidance was proposed as a decision tree allowing to choose the most suitable analytical tools in order to monitor pathogenic microorganisms in environment. Moreover, an in silico strategy of whole sequenced bacterial genome comparison was developed in order to describe new targets for NTM detection. In silico analysis of whole sequenced genomes allowed to detect 11 proteins showing between 80% and 100% of similarity with mycobacterial genomes, and less than 50% of similarity with closely related genomes of Corynebacterium, Nocardia and Rhodococcus genera. Based on the DNA sequence alignments of these potential targets, it was possible to design a primer pair and a probe in order to detect by PCR the gene coding for adenosine-5'-triphosphate synthase subunits C which seems exclusively conserved in mycobacterial genome.Using the developed analytical tools, especially the qPCR, we showed that a WWTP removed efficiently NTM from the influent, and that waste water treatment is necessary in order to preserve surface water against this NTM point source. It was shown that storm events decrease NTM densities in surface water and in contrast that acidic soils are major NTM natural sources which may impact lightly urbanized areas during wet weather when runoff water suspends soil matter. Concerning challenges dealing with pathogenic microorganism monitoring in environment, the decision tree of suitable analytical tools and the new in silico strategy of molecular target detection might be also useful for the study of other environmental microorganisms
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Submitted on : Monday, February 13, 2012 - 11:12:57 AM
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Nicolas Radomski. Sources des mycobactéries non-tuberculeuses dans les bassins versants. Sciences agricoles. Université Paris-Est, 2011. Français. ⟨NNT : 2011PEST1113⟩. ⟨pastel-00669399⟩

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