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Escherichia coli isolates from extraintestinal organs of livestock animals harbour diverse virulence genes and belong to multiple genetic lineages

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Wu, G., Erlicht, R., Mafura, M., Stokes, M., Smith, N., Pritchard, G. C. and Woodward, M. J. (2012) Escherichia coli isolates from extraintestinal organs of livestock animals harbour diverse virulence genes and belong to multiple genetic lineages. Veterinary Microbiology, 160 (1-2). pp. 197-206. ISSN 0378-1135

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To link to this article DOI: 10.1016/j.vetmic.2012.05.029

Abstract/Summary

Escherichia coli, the most common cause of bacteraemia in humans in the UK, can also cause serious diseases in animals. However the population structure, virulence and antimicrobial resistance genes of those from extraintestinal organs of livestock animals are poorly characterised. The aims of this study were to investigate the diversity of these isolates from livestock animals and to understand if there was any correlation between the virulence and antimicrobial resistance genes and the genetic backbone of the bacteria and if these isolates were similar to those isolated from humans. Here 39 E. coli isolates from liver (n=31), spleen (n=5) and blood (n=3) of cattle (n=34), sheep (n=3), chicken (n=1) and pig (n=1) were assigned to 19 serogroups with O8 being the most common (n=7), followed by O101, O20 (both n=3) and O153 (n=2). They belong to 29 multi-locus sequence types, 20 clonal complexes with ST23 (n=7), ST10 (n=6), ST117 and ST155 (both n=3) being most common and were distributed among phylogenetic group A (n=16), B1 (n=12), B2 (n=2) and D (n=9). The pattern of a subset of putative virulence genes was different in almost all isolates. No correlation between serogroups, animal hosts, MLST types, virulence and antimicrobial resistance genes was identified. The distributions of clonal complexes and virulence genes were similar to other extraintestinal or commensal E. coli from humans and other animals, suggesting a zoonotic potential. The diverse and various combinations of virulence genes implied that the infections were caused by different mechanisms and infection control will be challenging.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Chemistry, Food and Pharmacy > Department of Food and Nutritional Sciences > Food Microbial Sciences Research Group
ID Code:28416
Publisher:Elsevier

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