Genomic Surveillance of Listeria monocytogenes in Taiwan, 2014 to 2019

Yu Huan Tsai, Alexandra Moura, Zi Qi Gu, Jui Hsien Chang, Ying Shu Liao, Ru Hsiou Teng, Kuo Yao Tseng, Dai Ling Chang, Wei Ren Liu, Yu Tsung Huang, Alexandre Leclercq, Hsiu Jung Lo, Marc Lecuit, Chien Shun Chiou*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Listeria monocytogenes is a life-threatening foodborne pathogen. Here, we report the genomic characterization of a nationwide dataset of 411 clinical and 82 food isolates collected in Taiwan between 2014 and 2019. The observed incidence of listeriosis increased from 0.83 to 7 cases per million population upon implementation of mandatory notification in 2018. Pregnancy-associated cases accounted for 2.8% of human listeriosis and all-cause 7-day mortality was of 11.9% in nonmaternal-neonatal listeriosis. L. monocytogenes was isolated from 90% of raw pork and 34% of chicken products collected in supermarkets. Sublineages SL87, SL5, and SL378 accounted for the majority (65%) of clinical cases. SL87 and SL378 were also predominant (57%) in food products. Five cgMLST clusters accounted for 57% clinical cases, suggesting unnoticed outbreaks spanning up to 6 years. Mandatory notification allowed identifying the magnitude of listeriosis in Taiwan. Continuous real-time genomic surveillance will allow reducing contaminating sources and disease burden.

Original languageEnglish
JournalMicrobiology spectrum
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2022


  • core genome multilocus sequence typing
  • Listeria monocytogenes
  • listeriosis
  • whole-genome sequencing


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