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Vet Microbiol. 2013 Sep 27;166(1-2):276-80. doi: 10.1016/j.vetmic.2013.05.004. Epub 2013 May 23.

Characterization of Escherichia coli O78 from an outbreak of septicemia in lambs in Norway.

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Department of Food Safety and Infection Biology, Norwegian School of Veterinary Science, P.O. Box 8146 Dep, 0033 Oslo, Norway.


The aim of the study was to characterize isolates of Escherichia coli from an outbreak of septicemia in a Norwegian sheep flock in 2008 with emphasis on virulence, serological grouping, phylogenicity and homology. Six E. coli isolates from succumbed neonatal lambs and four E. coli isolates collected from healthy individuals were analyzed by Pulsed-Field Gel Electrophoresis (PFGE), miniaturized microarray, and polymerase chain reaction (PCR). The septicemic E. coli isolates showed identical pulsotypes (PTs), and belonged to serogroup O78, phylogenetic group A, and MLST ST 369. The virulence genes f17G, bmaE, afaE-VIII, ireA, iroN and iss were detected in the septicemic isolates. The results showed that the E. coli isolates from the septicemic outbreak had a clonal appearance, thus likely originating from a common source. The clone carried genes important for virulence, however, a significant explanation for the high pathogenicity was not revealed.


Escherichia coli; Neonatal; Septicemia; Sheep; Virulence

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