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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Characterization of Escherichia coli isolated from adult horses with and without enteritis.

In the present study E. coli strains isolated from the faeces of ten horses with diarrhoea and 14 horses without diarrhoea were characterized. All horses were culture negative for Salmonella species. Nine colonies of E. coli from each faecal sample were picked at random and a DNA fingerprint was made by means of a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) using Enterobacterial Repetitive Intergenic Consensus (ERIC) primers. The number of E. coli genotypes did not differ significantly between horses with and without diarrhoea. In addition, all E. coli strains with different DNA fingerprints were tested by PCR for genes encoding the virulence factors K88, F41, F17, CS31a, Sta1, LT1, VT2, CNF, BFP, and intimin. Genes coding for K88, F41, BFP, STa1, VT2, and CS31A were not detected. Genes for CNF were found in strains from one horse with diarrhoea and one horse with normal faeces. Genes for LT1 (n=1) and intimin (n=1) were found only in strains from horses with normal faeces. Genes for F17 fimbriae were found in strains from three horses with diarrhoea (30%) and in none of the strains from healthy horses. In two of these horses, E. coli strains with different DNA polymorphism patterns were F17 positive; however, none of these strains possessed LT1, Sta1, or CNF genes. Haemolytic E. coli strains were only isolated from two horses with diarrhoea and from none of the healthy horses. Nineteen percent of all E. coli strains did not ferment lactose. Eight per cent of these lactose-negative strains were from horses with diarrhoea, whereas 32% were from horses without diarrhoea. In conclusion, virulence factors were present in E. coli isolates from horses with and without diarrhoea, except for F17, which was only found in E. coli isolated from horses with diarrhoea. F17-positive E. coli might have importance as cause of diarrhoea in horses, but further studies are needed.[1]


  1. Characterization of Escherichia coli isolated from adult horses with and without enteritis. van Duijkeren, E., van Asten, A.J., Gaastra, W. The Veterinary quarterly. (2000) [Pubmed]
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