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Interaction with avian cells and colonisation of specific pathogen free chicks by Shiga-toxin negative Escherichia coli O157 : H7 (NCTC 12900)

Best, A., Ragione, R.M., Cooley, W.A., Connor, C.D., Velge, P. and Woodward, M.J. (2003) Interaction with avian cells and colonisation of specific pathogen free chicks by Shiga-toxin negative Escherichia coli O157 : H7 (NCTC 12900) Veterinary Microbiology, 93, (3), pp. 207-222. (doi:10.1016/S0378-1135(03)00031-2).

Record type: Article


The prevalence of Escherichia coli O157:H7 infection in birds is low but several deliberate inoculation studies show that poultry are readily and persistently infected by this organism indicating a possible threat to public health. The mechanisms of colonisation of poultry are not understood and the aim is to establish models to study the interaction of E. coli O157:H7, at the cellular and whole animal levels. A non-toxigenic E. coli O157:H7 (NCTC 12900) was used in adherence assays with an avian epithelial cell line (Div-1) and used to inoculate 1-day-old SPF chicks. In vitro, NCTC 12900 induced micro-colonies associated with cytoskeletal arrangements and pedestal formation with intimate bacterial attachment. In the 1-day-old SPF chick, a dose of 1×105 cfu resulted in rapid and extensive colonisation of the gastrointestinal tract and transient colonisation of the liver and spleen. The number of E. coli O157:H7 organisms attained approximately 108 cfu/ml caecal homogenate 24 h after inoculation and approximately 107 cfu/ml caecal homogenate was still present at day 92. Faecal shedding persisted for 169 days, ceasing 9 days after the birds came into lay and 6% of eggs were contaminated on the eggshell. Histological analysis of tissue samples from birds dosed with 1×107 cfu gave evidence for E. coli O157:H7 NCTC 12900 induced micro-colonies on the caecal mucosa, although evidence for attaching effacing lesions was equivocal. These models may be suitable to study those factors of E. coli O157:H7 that mediate persistent colonisation in avian species.

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Published date: 29 May 2003
Keywords: escherichia coli O157:H7, chicken, persistent infection, avian cell line, adherence


Local EPrints ID: 56465
ISSN: 0378-1135
PURE UUID: e7bddeeb-4b4d-4724-8a22-75d6b6b5a8b8

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Date deposited: 08 Aug 2008
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 14:30

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Author: A. Best
Author: R.M. Ragione
Author: W.A. Cooley
Author: C.D. Connor
Author: P. Velge
Author: M.J. Woodward

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