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FEMS Microbiol Lett. 1997 Jan 1;146(1):123-8.

Virulence properties of Escherichia coli O111:H12 strains.

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Departamento de Microbiologia, Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil.


Seventeen Escherichia coli O111:H12 strains isolated from the feces of children with acute diarrhea were studied with regard to their adherence properties and other virulence characteristics. All strains showed an aggregative adherence pattern to HEp-2 cells and agglutinated bovine and sheep red cells in the presence of mannose. These strains did not have gene sequences homologous to the aggregative adherence fimbria I gene and did not react with any of the DNA probes used to detect other virulence genes in enteropathogens. With one exception, the O111:H12 strains did not induce fluid accumulation in the rabbit ileal loop assay, although 16 of the strains had the enteroaggregative E. coli heat-stable enterotoxin 1 (EAST) gene sequences. A 60-70 MDa plasmid was present in 16 of the strains studied. We conclude that the O111:H12 serotype, one of the first E. coli identified in infantile diarrhea, belongs to the enteroaggregative E. coli category but the genes encoding its adherence phenotype are distinct from those previously described.

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