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J Comp Pathol. 2005 Feb-Apr;132(2-3):185-94.

Attaching-effacing lesions associated with Escherichia coli O157:H7 and other bacteria in experimentally infected conventional neonatal goats.

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Department of Clinical Veterinary Science, University of Bristol Veterinary School, Langford, Bristol BS40 5DU, UK.


Four conventionally reared goats aged 6 days were inoculated orally with approximately 10(10) colony-forming units (cfu) of a non-verotoxigenic strain of Escherichia coli O157:H7. All remained clinically normal. Tissues were sampled under terminal anaesthesia at 24 (two animals), 48 and 72 h post-inoculation (hpi). E. coli O157:H7 was cultured from the ileum, caecum, colon and rectum of all animals, but the number of bacteria recovered at these sites varied between animals. Attaching-effacing (AE) lesions associated with O157 organisms, as confirmed by immunolabelling, were observed in the ileum of one of the two animals examined at 24 hpi, and in the ileum, caecum and proximal colon of an animal examined at 72 hpi. E. coli O157 organisms were detected at > or =10(5) cfu/g of tissue at these sites. In addition, AE lesions associated with unidentified bacteria were observed at various sites in the large bowel of the same animals. Lesions containing both E. coli O157 and unidentified bacteria (non-O157) were not observed. Non-O157 AE lesions were also observed in the large bowel of one of two uninoculated control animals. This indicated that three (one control and two inoculated) animals were colonized with an unidentified AE organism before the commencement of the experiment. The O157-associated AE lesions were observed only in animals colonized by non-O157 AE organisms and this raises questions about individual host susceptibility to AE lesions and whether non-O157 AE organisms influence colonization by E. coli O157.

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