Escherichia coli is a major cause of enteric/diarrheal diseases, urinary tract infections, and sepsis. E. coli K1 is the leading gram-negative organism causing neonatal meningitis, but the microbial basis of E. coli K1 meningitis is incompletely understood. Here we employed comparative genomic hybridization to investigate 11 strains of E. coli K1 isolated from the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of patients with meningitis. These 11 strains cover the majority of common O serotypes in E. coli K1 isolates from CSF. Our data demonstrated that these 11 strains off. coli K1 can be categorized into two groups based on their profile for putative virulence factors, lipoproteins, proteases, and outer membrane proteins. Of interest, we showed that some open reading frames (ORFs) encoding the type III secretion system apparatus were found in group 2 strains but not in group 1 strains, while ORFs encoding the general secretory pathway are predominant in group 1 strains. These findings suggest that E. coli K1 strains isolated from CSF can be divided into two groups and these two groups of E. coli K1 may utilize different mechanisms to induce meningitis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases