Characterization of enteroaggregative Escherichia coli isolated from outbreaks of diarrhoeal disease in England
Twenty-two strains of enteroaggregative Escherichia coli (EAggEC), isolated from four outbreaks of diarrhoeal disease in England, were examined for a range of phenotypic attributes including the ability to produce fimbriae, haemolysins and siderophores, and cell-surface properties such as surface charge and hydrophobicity. Strains of EAggEC isolated from two of these outbreaks belonged to a diverse range of serotypes and were heterogeneous in phenotype. Strains of EAggEC isolated from the other two outbreaks belonged predominantly to serotypes O86[ratio]H34 and O98[ratio]H-, respectively. Only two strains expressed fimbriae and two strains produced an 18 kDa membrane associated protein (MAP), suggesting that EAggEC express a range of adhesion mechanisms to produce the cell arrangement recognized as the ‘stacked brick’ formation. The possible explanation for the diversity of EAggEC serotypes is discussed.(Accepted July 2 1999)
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