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Glutamate decarboxylase genes as a prescreening marker for detection of pathogenic Escherichia coli groups.


ABSTRACT: The enzyme glutamate decarboxylase (GAD) is prevalent in Escherichia coli but few strains in the various pathogenic E. coli groups have been tested for GAD. Using PCR primers that amplify a 670-bp segment from the gadA and gadB genes encoding GAD, we examined the distribution of the gadAB genes among enteric bacteria. Analysis of 173 pathogenic E. coli strains, including 125 enterohemorrhagic E. coli isolates of the O157:H7 serotype and its phenotypic variants and 48 isolates of enteropathogenic E. coli, enterotoxigenic E. coli, enteroinvasive E. coli, and other Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) serotypes, showed that gadAB genes were present in all these strains. Among the 22 non-E. coli isolates tested, only the 6 Shigella spp. carried gadAB. Analysis of naturally contaminated water and food samples using a gadAB-specific DNA probe that was labeled with digoxigenin showed that a gadAB-based assay is as reliable as standard methods that enumerate E. coli organisms on the basis of lactose fermentation. The presence of few E. coli cells initially seeded into produce rinsates could be detected by PCR to gadA/B genes after overnight enrichment. A multiplex PCR assay using the gadAB primers in combination with primers to Shiga toxin (Stx) genes stx(1) and stx(2) was effective in detecting STEC from the enrichment medium after seeding produce rinsate samples with as few as 2 CFU. The gadAB primers may be multiplexed with primers to other trait virulence markers to specifically identify other pathogenic E. coli groups.

SUBMITTER: Grant MA 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC92988 | BioStudies | 2001-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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