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Genetic diversity and whole genome sequence analysis data of multidrug resistant atypical enteropathogenic Escherichia coli O177 strains: an assessment of food safety and public health implications


Montso, PK and Bezuidenhout, CC and Mienie, C and Somorin, YM and Odeyemi, OA and Mlambo, V and Ateba, CN, Genetic diversity and whole genome sequence analysis data of multidrug resistant atypical enteropathogenic Escherichia coli O177 strains: an assessment of food safety and public health implications, International Journal of Food Microbiology, 365 Article 109555. ISSN 0168-1605 (2022) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

2022 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.ijfoodmicro.2022.109555


Atypical enteropathogenic E. coli (aEPEC) strains are emerging pathogens responsible for fatal diarrhoea in humans worldwide. The purpose of this study was to investigate genetic diversity, virulence and antimicrobial resistance profiles of aEPEC O177 strains isolated from faeces of cattle reared in intensive and extensive production systems in South Africa. A total of 96 multidrug resistant (MDR) aEPEC O177 isolates were typed using enterobacterial repetitive intergenic consensus (ERIC) and random amplified polymorphism DNA (RAPD) typing. The resistome, virulome and mobilome of two aEPEC O177 isolates were investigated using WGS analysis. The ERIC typing was efficient and reproducible with a discriminatory index of 0.95. RAPD typing had poor reproducibility with satisfactory discriminatory power of 0.859. The dendrograms constructed based on ERIC and RAPD banding patterns produced 9 and 8 clusters, respectively, which indicate genetic variation among E. coli O177 isolates. WGS analysis revealed that CF-154-A and CF-335-B) isolates belonged to the O177 serotype with H7 and H21, respectively. Both isolates harboured several virulome genes such as intimin (eaeA), haemolysin (hlyA and hlyE), translocated iron receptor (tir), Type III secretion system (eprH, gspL and prgH), bssR and bssS. However, genes encoding shiga toxins were not found in either isolate. Antibiotic resistance genes such as ampC, tet, ermB, sul2, strB AcrD, aph(6)-Ic, aph(6)-Ib, aph(3″)-I, ant (3″)-1a AcrA and acrE were found in the E. coli O177 strains. Furthermore, genome annotation results indicated that both isolates carried plasmids, insertion sequences, prophages and cluster of regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) type I. Based on in silico multi locus typing (MLST) analysis, the two isolates were assigned to different sequence types (CF-154-A, ST-1308 and CF-335-B, ST-58). Whole genome multi locus typing tree showed that our isolates clustered with E. coli O177:H21 (reference), suggesting the close genomic relatedness among the strains. Overall, these findings showed that cattle carry genetically diverse E. coli O177 strains, which harbour a repertoire of virulome, resistome and mobilome genes. This highlights a need for multidrug resistant E. coli O177 strain surveillance in cattle.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Escherichia coli O177, whole genome sequencing, virulence genes, antibiotic resistance genes, phylogenetic relationship, food safety
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Fisheries sciences
Research Field:Fisheries sciences not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Animal Production and Animal Primary Products
Objective Group:Fisheries - aquaculture
Objective Field:Aquaculture crustaceans (excl. rock lobster and prawns)
UTAS Author:Odeyemi, OA (Dr Olumide Odeyemi)
ID Code:148632
Year Published:2022
Web of Science® Times Cited:1
Deposited By:Strategic Research Funding
Deposited On:2022-01-31
Last Modified:2022-12-02

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