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Fish Shellfish Immunol. 2007 Nov;23(5):1095-106. Epub 2007 May 29.

Carbohydrate analysis and serological classification of typical and atypical isolates of Aeromonas salmonicida: a rationale for the lipopolysaccharide-based classification of A. salmonicida.

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Institute for Biological Sciences, National Research Council of Canada, 100 Sussex Drive, Ottawa, ON, K1A 0R6, Canada.


The cell envelope of Aeromonas salmonicida contains a lipopolysaccharide (LPS) essential for the physical integrity and functioning of bacterial cell membrane. Using a recently developed in-source fragmentation technique, we screened 39 typical and atypical isolates of A. salmonicida and established their O-chain polysaccharide structure by capillary electrophoresis-mass spectrometry (CE-MS), compositional and linkage analyses and comparison to the previously determined O-chain polysaccharide structure of A. salmonicida strain A449. These studies have demonstrated that A. salmonicida isolates fall into three distinct structural types, types A-C, based on chemical structures of their respective O-chain polysaccharide components. Subsequent immunoblotting and serological studies with salmon polyclonal antisera produced to formalin-fixed cells of A. salmonicida strains A449, N4705 and 33659 representing three structural types A-C revealed that variations in the O-chain polysaccharide structure have led to significant serological differences between strains belonging to type A and non-type A, where non-type A species include chemically separated structural types B and C. Due to the presence of common antigenic determinants shared by their respective O-chain polysaccharide components, serological cross-reactions were observed between A. salmonicida strains belonging to structural types B and C. These findings suggest the possibility of developing LPS-based classification system of A. salmonicida sub-species consisting of two serologically distinct types, type A and non-type A.

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