Colonization factor antigens I and II (CFA/I and CFA/II) are important in the pathogenesis of diarrhea in humans caused by some enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC). Plasmid DNA from 16 CFA/I+ and five CFA/II+ ETEC were examined by Southern blot analysis with enterotoxin gene probes and were compared with plasmid DNA from derivatives of the same ETEC that had lost the ability to produce these colonization factors. Among the 16 CFA/I+ ETEC strains, the loss of CFA/I was accompanied by the loss of a plasmid of between 34 and 68 megadaltons (MDa) coding for heat-stable enterotoxin A2 (ST-A2) in 12 strains, by the loss of a 60-MDa plasmid coding for heat-labile enterotoxin (LT) and ST-A2 in one strain, or by deletions of a segment of DNA encoding for ST-A2 in three strains. Among five CFA/II+ ETEC strains, the loss of CFA/II was associated with the loss of a plasmid of 75 MDa coding for LT and ST-A2 in three strains, with the loss of genes coding for LT and ST-A2 from a 68-MDa plasmid in one strain, or with no discernible loss of a plasmid or DNA sequences coding for enterotoxins in the remaining strain. The loss of CFA/I and CFA/II production was associated with the loss of DNA sequences encoding for ST-A2 in 20 of 21 ETEC examined.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases