Serogroups and genetic diversity of diarrheagenic strains of Escherichia coli: a retrospective study

  • Anca Mare Department of Microbiology, George Emil Palade University of Medicine, Pharmacy, Sciences and Technology Târgu Mureș, Romania https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8115-8058
  • Adrian Man Department of Microbiology, George Emil Palade University of Medicine, Pharmacy, Sciences and Technology Târgu Mureș, Romania https://orcid.org/0000-0001-5281-0601
  • Cristina Nicoleta Ciurea Department of Microbiology, George Emil Palade University of Medicine, Pharmacy, Sciences and Technology Târgu Mureș, Romania
  • Ionela Anca Pintea-Simon Department of Microbiology, George Emil Palade University of Medicine, Pharmacy, Sciences and Technology Târgu Mureș, Romania
  • Edith Simona Ianoși Department of Pneumology, George Emil Palade University of Medicine, Pharmacy, Sciences and Technology Târgu Mureș, Romania
  • Cristina Elena Gîrbovan Department of Infectious Diseases, George Emil Palade University of Medicine, Pharmacy, Sciences and Technology Târgu Mureș; Romania
  • Felicia Toma Department of Microbiology, George Emil Palade University of Medicine, Pharmacy, Sciences and Technology Târgu Mureș, Romania
Keywords: Diarrhea, Escherichia coli, EPEC, serogroup, PCR

Abstract

Introduction: Diverse serogroups of Escherichia coli cause sporadic cases and outbreaks of diarrhea among children. Our study aimed to evaluate the serogroups of diarrheagenic strains of E. coli that cause diarrheal disease in children under two years old, and clarify if the cases were sporadic or outbreaks.

Methodology: The retrospective study included 130 strains of pathogenic E. coli, isolated from children who were less than two years of age, and had diarrheal disease, between May 2016 and July 2019. The study was conducted in the Bacteriology Laboratory (County Clinical Hospital, Mureș, Romania). The 130 strains were sero-grouped using polyvalent and monovalent O antisera. Enterobacterial Repetitive Intergenic Consensus-PCR (ERIC-PCR) was performed to evaluate the similarity between different E. coli strains, and a simplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was performed to detect the presence of the hlyA gene that is specific to the enterohemorrhagic strains.

Results: After agglutination with polyvalent O antisera, slightly more than half of the strains (50.77%) were sero-grouped as Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC), and the rest of the strains belonged to the Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC) serogroups. Serogroup O157 was the most frequently identified (16.51% of the total number of typeable strains), and one strain was positive for hlyA. ERIC-PCR revealed a high diversity of strains, with an overall 50% similarity.

Conclusions: STEC serogroups were the most common strains causing diarrheal disease, and O-157 was the dominant serogroup identified. The strains included in our study presented high genetic diversity, suggesting that most of the cases were sporadic.

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Published
2022-05-30
How to Cite
1.
Mare A, Man A, Ciurea CN, Pintea-SimonIA, Ianoși ES, Gîrbovan CE, Toma F (2022) Serogroups and genetic diversity of diarrheagenic strains of Escherichia coli: a retrospective study. J Infect Dev Ctries 16:827-834. doi: 10.3855/jidc.15703
Section
Original Articles