Streptococcus sp. VT-162 in Patients with Hematological Malignancies
Streptococcus sp. VT-162 is a novel species of streptococci that was isolated from the oral cavities of patients with acute leukemia. The organism naturally colonizes the oral cavity and is an important pathogenic agent of pneumonia and potentially other opportunistic infections, particularly in immunocompromised hosts. Indeed, we demonstrated that Streptococcus sp. strain VT-162 is capable of inducing pneumonia associated with disseminated infections that result in significant levels of mortality.
Our data suggest that the organism presents genetic features of pathogenic bacteria, and may also trigger life-threatening infections in at-risk patients, particularly those with underlying pathologies such as hematological malignancies. Notably, Streptococcus sp. VT-162 encodes a glyoxalase that exhibits oncogenic activity; therefore, its role in malignization should be thoroughly evaluated.
Vecherkovskaya, M. F., Tetz, G. V., & Tetz, V. V. (2014). Complete Genome Sequence of the Streptococcus sp. strain VT-162, Isolated from the Saliva of Pediatric Oncohematology Patients. Genome Announcements; 2(4), e00647-14.