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J Vet Med Sci. 1992 Dec;54(6):1091-8.

Serum resistance and aerobactin iron uptake in avian Escherichia coli mediated by conjugative 100-megadalton plasmid.

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Research Center for Veterinary Science, Kitasato Institute, Chiba, Japan.


A total of 115 strains of Escherichia coli isolated from chickens with colisepticemia in Japan were examined for chicken lethality and virulence factors. It was found that serum resistance and aerobactin-mediated iron uptake are the most prevalent characteristics in these strains. Among them, S-20, a representative virulent strain of serotype O2, was further studied. S-20 harbored a conjugative 100-megadalton (Mdal) plasmid, designated pKI100. Curing and reintroduction experiments showed that pKI100 encodes both serum resistance and aerobactin-mediated iron uptake, and the diminished virulence of the pKI100-cured strain was fully restored by the reintroduction of the plasmid. These results demonstrated that pKI100 is the virulence plasmid of the S-20 strain, and that serum resistance and aerobactin-mediated iron uptake are the virulence factors in E. coli strains which cause avian colibacillosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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