Molecular Characterization of Enterotoxin-Producing Escherichia coli Collected in 2011-2012, Russia.PLoS One 2015; 10(4):e0123357Plos
Enterotoxin-producing Escherichia coli (ETEC) are one of the main causative agents of diarrhea in children especially in developing countries and travel diarrhoea in adults. Pathogenic properties of ETEC associated with their ability to produce a heat-stable (ST) and/or heat-labile (LT) enterotoxins, as well as adhesins providing bacterial adhesion to intestinal epithelial cells. This study presents the molecular characterization of the ETEC isolates collected from the Central and Far-Eastern regions of Russia in 2011-2012. It was shown that all ETEC under study (n=18) had the heat-labile enterotoxin-coding operon elt, and had no the genes of the heat-stable enterotoxin operon est. DNA sequencing revealed two types of nucleotide exchanges in the eltB gene coding subunit B of LT in isolates collected from Cherepovets city (Central region, Russia) and Vladivostok city (Far-East region, Russia). Only one ETEC strain carried genes cfaA, cfaB, cfaC and cfaD coding adhesion factor CFA/I. Expression of LT in four ETEC isolates in the agglutination reaction was detected using a latex test-system. The isolates were assigned to serogroups O142 (n = 6), О6 (n = 4), О25 (n = 5), О26 (n = 2), and O115 (n = 1). Genotyping showed that they belonged to an earlier described sequence-type ST4 (n = 3) as well as to 11 novel sequence-types ST1043, ST1312, ST3697, ST3707, ST3708, ST3709, ST3710, ST3755, ST3756, ST3757 and ST4509. The ETEC isolates displayed different levels of antimicrobial resistance. Eight isolates were resistant to only one drug, three isolates-to two drugs, one isolate-to three drugs, two isolates-to four antibacterials, and only one isolate to each of the five, six and ten antibacterials simultaneously. Genetic determinants of the resistance to beta-lactams and other classes of antibacterials on the ETEC genomes were identified. There are blaTEM (n = 10), blaCTX-M-15 (n = 1), class 1 integron (n = 3) carrying resistance cassettes to aminoglycosides and sulphonamides dfrA17-aadA5 and dfrA12-orfF-aadA2. One isolate ETEC_Ef-6 was found to be a multidrug-resistant (MDR) pathogen that carried both the beta-lactamase gene and class 1 integron. These data suggest the circulation of ETEC in Russia. Further investigations are necessary to study the spread of the revealed ETEC sequence types (STs) and serotypes. Their role in the etiology of diarrhea should be also estimated.