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Exploring alternative patterns of descent

Re-assigning the primary founder

There may be cases where you believe that the primary founder predicted by eBURST is wrong, or where there are two possible founders with substantial bootstrap support and you would like to explore how the eBURST diagram would look if the alternative ST was assigned as the primary founder.

The ability to re-assign the primary founder (see here for details of how to do this) can change the diagram substantially as many STs may be SLVs of both the predicted primary founder and an alternative plausible primary founder, but are preferentially assigned to the primary founder (the true number of SLVs of any ST are shown in the Analysis Panel). Re-assigning the primary founder will now preferentially assign all of these SLVs to the user-selected primary founder.

Figure 3 shows an example of an eBURST diagram shown with the primary founder assigned by eBURST (blue) and re-drawn with a user-defined ST as the primary founder (red). The diagrams represent the unedited output of eBURST v3. In this example, the lineage 3 clonal complex of N. meningitidis, we proposed in Feil et al. (2004) that ST303 (arrow) may have been the near extinct founding ST of this large clonal complex, although it is not assigned as the primary founder by eBURST. To explore this further, the diagram is re-drawn with ST303 as the user-defined primary founder, which shows that ST303 has many SLVs and looks a plausible founder. This is also supported by the fact that ST303 has the minimum distance to all other STs in the clonal complex.

Figure 3

eBURSTv3 has been developed and is hosted at Imperial College London