Franco Pagotto


Franco Pagotto
Adjunct Professor, Co-Director, Listeriosis Reference Service, Health Canada

B.Sc. (Honours biology/biotechnology option) - 1991 University of Ottawa
M.Sc. (Food Microbiology) - 1994 University of Guelph
Ph.D. (Microbiology and Immunology) - 2000 University of Ottawa

Office: 613-957-0895
Fax: 613-941-0280
Work E-mail:

Dr. Franco Pagotto


Research Interests

A research scientist at Health Canada in the Bureau of Microbial Hazards, our laboratory is interested in various research activities mostly focus on the bacterial pathogens Listeria and Cronobacter. Some of the projects include the microbiological safety and control of fresh-cut produce, hazard identification and risk assessment of Listeria monocytogenes and Cronobacter species in foods, molecular typing and genomic characterization of foodborne bacterial pathogens, and pathogenesis and virulence determinants of foodborne pathogens. A member of the steering committee for PulseNet Canada, I am also a co-director of the Listeriosis Reference Centre for Canada.

Select Publications

  • Pightling, A.W., Rand, H., Strain, E., and Pagotto, F. 2016. Genome sequence of Listeria monocytogenes strain HPB913, collected in Canada in 1993. Genome Announcements 4(5). pii: e00911-16. doi: 10.1128/genomeA.00911-16.
  • Boivin, T., Elmgren, C., Brooks, B.W., Huang, H., Pagotto, F., and Lin, M. 2016. Expression of surface protein LapB in a wide spectrum of Listeria monocytogenes serotype demonstrated with anti-LapB monoclonal antibodies. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 82: 6768-6778. .
  • Ronholm, J., Nasheri, N., Petronella, N., and Pagotto, F. 2016. Navigating microbiological food safety in the era of whole-genome sequencing. Clinical Microbiological Reviews 29: 837-857. .
  • Zhang, C.X., Brooks, B.W., Huang, H. Pagotto, F., and Lin, M. 2016. Identification of surface protein biomarkers of Listeria monocytogenes using bioinformatics and antibody-based protein detection tools. Applied and Environmental Microbiology pii: AEM.00774-16. [Epub ahead of print]. PMID: 7342549. .
  • Marinier, E., Zaheer, R., Berry, C., Weedmark, K., Domaratzki, M., Mabon, P., Knox, N., Reimer, A., Graham, M., Chui, L., The Canadian Listeria Detection and Surveillance using Next Generation Genomics (LiDS-NG) and Van Domselaar, G. 2015. Neptune: A bioinformatics tool for rapid discovery of genomic variation in bacterial populations. Submitted. .
  • Pightling, A.W., Petronella, N., and Pagotto, F. 2015. Choice of reference-guided sequence assembler and SNP caller for analysis of Listeria monocytogenes short-read sequence data greatly influences rates of error. BMC Research Notes 8: 748. .
  • Pightling, A.W., Petronella, N., and Pagotto, F. 2015. The Listeria monocytogenes core-genome sequence typer (LmCGST): a bioinformatic pipeline for molecular characterization with next-generation sequence data. BMC Microbiology 15: 224. .
  • Currie, A., Farber, J.M., Nadon, C., Sharma, D., Whitfield, Y., Gaulin, C., Galanis, E., Bekal, S., Flint, J., Tschetter, L., Pagotto, F., Lee, B., Jamieson, F., Badiani, T., MacDonald, D., Ellis, A., May-Hadford, J., McCormick, R., Savelli, C., Middleton, D., Allen, V., Tremblay, F.W., MacDougall, L., Hoang, Shyng, S., Everett, D., Chui, L., Louie, M., Bangura, H., Levett, P.N., Wilkinson, K., Wylie, J., Reid, J., Major, B., Engel, D., Douey, D., Huszczynski, G., Di Lecci, J., Strazds, J., Rousseau, J., Ma, K., Isaac, L., and Sierpinska U. 2015. Multi-province listeriosis outbreak linked to contaminated deli meat consumed primarily in institutional settings, Canada, 2008. Foodborne Pathogens and Diseases 12: 645-652. .
  • Pightling, A.W., and Pagotto, F. 2015. Genome sequence of Listeria monocytogenes strain HPB5415 collected during a 2008 listeriosis outbreak in Canada. Genome Announcements Jun 11;3(3). pii: e00637-15. doi: 10.1128/genomeA.00637-15. .
  • Yan, Q., Jarvis, K.G., Chase, H.R., Hébert, K., Trach, L.H., Lee, C., Sadowski, J., Lee, B., Hwang, S., Sathyamoorthy, V., Mullane, N., Pava-Ripoll, M., Iversen, C., Pagotto, F., Fanning, S., Tall, B.D. 2015. A proposed harmonized LPS molecular-subtyping scheme for Cronobacter species. Food Microbiology Sep;50:38-43. doi: 10.1016/ Epub 2015 Mar 17..
  • Kou, Y., Pagotto, F., Hannach, B., and Ramirez-Arcos, S. 2015. Fatal false-negative transfusion infection involving a buffy coat platelet pool contaminated with biofilm-positive Staphylococcus epidermidis: a case report. Transfusion May 18. doi: 10.1111/trf.13154. [Epub ahead of print] .
  • Tall, B.D., Gangiredla, J., Gopinath, G.R., Yan, Q., Chase, H.R., Lee, B., Hwang, S., Trach, L., Park, E., Yoo, Y., Chung, T., Jackson, S.A., Patel, I.R., Sathyamoorthy, V., Pava-Ripoll, M., Kotewicz, M.L., Carter, L., Iversen, C., Pagotto, F., Stephan, R., Lehner, A., Fanning, S., Grim, C.J. 2015. Development of a custom-designed pan genomic DNA microarray to characterize strain-level diversity among Cronobacter spp. Frontiers in Pediatrics, Apr 30;3:36. doi: 10.3389/fped.2015.00036. eCollection 2015. .
  • Magalhaes, R., Almeida, G., Ferreira, V., Santos, I., Silva, J., Mendes, M.M., Pita, J., Mariano, G., Mancio, I., Sousa, M.M., Farber, J., Pagotto, F., and Teixeira, P. 2015. Cheese-related listeriosis outbreak, Portugal, March 2009 to 2012. Eurosurveillance 20(17): pii=21104. Available online: .
  • Petronella, N., Kenwell, R., Pagotto, F., and Pightling, A.W. 2014. Draft genome sequences of two Clostridium botulinum Group II (nonproteolytic) Type B strains (DB-2 and KAPB-3). Genome Announcement 2(6): e01111-14. Doi: 10.1128/genomeA.01111-14. .
  • Pightling, A.W., Petronella, N., and Pagotto, F. 2014. Choice of reference sequence and assembler for alignment of Listeria monocytogenes short-read sequence data greatly influences rates of error in SNP analyses. PLoS One 9(8):e104579. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0104579. eCollection 2014. .
  • Pightling, A.W., and Pagotto, F. 2014. Draft genome sequence of Cronobacter sakazakii clonal complex 45 strain HPB5174, isolated from a powdered infant formula facility in Ireland. Genome Announcements 2(4):e00778-14. Doi: 10.1128/genomeA.00778-14. .
  • Pightling, A.W., Lin, M., and Pagotto, F. 2014. Draft genome sequence of Listeria monocytogenes strain LI0521 (syn. HPB7171), isolated in 1983 during an outbreak in Massachusetts caused by contaminated cheese. Genome Announcements 2(4):e00729-14. doi:10.1128/genomeA.00729-14. 



Fields of Interest

  • Food safety
  • Listeria
  • Cronobacter
  • Food and molecular microbiology
  • Molecular typing and bacterial genomics
  • Diagnostics
  • Foodborne pathogens
  • Microbiology
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