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and Implications for Using Whole-Genome Sequencing for Investigating Recent Tuberculosis Transmission.

Abstract

genome, we first analyzed pairwise SNP differences among TB cases from Los Angeles County, California, with strong epidemiologic links. We found that SNP distance alone was insufficient for concluding that cases are linked through recent transmission. Second, we describe a well-characterized cluster of TB cases in California to illustrate the role of genomic data in conclusions regarding recent transmission. Longer presumed latent periods were inconsistently associated with larger SNP differences. Our analyses suggest that WGS alone cannot be used to definitively determine that a case is attributable to recent transmission. Methods for integrating clinical, epidemiologic, and genomic data can guide conclusions regarding the likelihood of recent transmission, providing local public health practitioners with better tools for monitoring and investigating TB transmission.

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