EspP, a Type V-secreted serine protease of enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli O157 : H7, influences intestinal colonization of calves and adherence to bovine primary intestinal epithelial cells

Francis Dziva, Arvind Mahajan, Pamela Cameron, Carol Currie, Iain J. McKendrick, Timothy S. Wallis, David G. E. Smith, Mark P. Stevens

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Enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) comprise a group of zoonotic diarrhoeal pathogens of worldwide importance. Cattle are a key reservoir; however the molecular mechanisms that promote persistent colonization of the bovine intestines by EHEC are ill-defined. The large plasmid of EHEC O157:H7 encodes several putative virulence factors. Here, it is reported that the pO157-encoded Type V-secreted serine protease EspP influences the intestinal colonization of calves. To dissect the basis of attenuation, a bovine primary rectal epithelial cell line was developed. Adherence of E. coli O157:H7 to such cells was significantly impaired by espP mutation but restored upon addition of highly purified exogenous EspP. Data of this study add to the growing body of evidence that cytotoxins facilitate intestinal colonization by EHEC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)258-264
Number of pages7
JournalFEMS Microbiology Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2007

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