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J Infect Dis. 1999 Jan;179(1):269-74.

Antibody response of children with enteropathogenic Escherichia coli infection to the bundle-forming pilus and locus of enterocyte effacement-encoded virulence determinants.

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Faculdade de Ciências Farmacêuticas, Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil.


Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC) express a plasmid-encoded type IV pilus termed bundle-forming pilus, which is associated with the formation of bacterial microcolonies on cultured epithelial cells. Bacterial attachment and effacement of the enterocyte brush border membrane is attributed to a surface outer membrane protein adhesin termed intimin and EPEC-secreted proteins EspA, EspB, and EspD. Except for intimin, production in vivo or antibody response against these virulence determinants during natural EPEC infections in young children has not been demonstrated. Antibody responses against BfpA, intimin, EspA, and EspB were investigated in Brazilian children naturally infected with EPEC. Generally, IgG antibodies against BfpA and EspB were the most commonly found, followed by anti-EspA and intimin antibodies. Thus, bundle-forming pilus and locus of enterocyte attachment-encoded products are produced in vivo during natural EPEC infections and elicit an immune response against heterologous EPEC virulence determinants. These findings have important implications in the immunoprophylaxis against EPEC infections.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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