Genomic characterisation of Leptospira inadai serogroup Lyme isolated from captured rat in Brazil and comparative analysis with human reference strain

Leptospira inadai is classified as a species of the Leptospira intermediate group that has been poorly studied due to its apparent insignificance to human and animal health. Nevertheless, over the last two decades the species has been described in human cases in India and in carrier animals in Ecuador. Here, we present the first identification and genomic characterisation of L. inadai serogroup Lyme isolated from captured rodent in Brazil. Even though the M34/99 strain was not pathogenic for hamsters, it was able to establish renal colonisation. The M34/99 strain presented high similarity with L. inadai serogroup Lyme human reference indicating that animal strain could also infect humans, although it does not represent high risk of severe disease. An extrachromosomal sequence was also identified in M34/99 strain and presented high identity with previously described L. inadai phage LinZ_10, suggesting that phage-like extrachromosomal sequence may be another feature of this understudied species.