Mar 1, 1977

Diarrhea due to Escherichia coli in the rabbit: a novel mechanism

The Journal of Infectious Diseases
J R Cantey, R K Blake


A strain of Escherichia coli O15 (RDEC-1) isolated from several rabbits with diarrhea was examined to determine (1) whether the strain could produce diarrhea when administered by the orogastric route to other rabbits and (2) whether this strain was invasive or enterotoxigenic. Strain RDEC-1 produced diarrhea in 48 of 62 rabbits when given by the orogastric route in doses that ranged from 1.5 X 10(2) to 4 X 10(10) bacteria. The organism did not give a positive result in the 18-hr ileal loop or Serény tests and did not invade HeLa cells. Culture supernatants of strain RDEC-1 did not give positive results in the 6- or 18-hr rabbit ileal loop, suckling mouse, Y-1 adrenal cell, or Chinese hamster ovary cell assays. Fluorescent antibody staining of sections of intestine prepared in a cryostat revealed great numbers of E. coli strain RDEC-1 that adhered to the epithelial surface. It is evident that E. coli can produce diarrhea without being able to invade the mucosa or synthesize enterotoxin. Strains of E. coli similar to RDEC-1 may account for some of the E. coli-associated diarrhea that occurs in humans.

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Mentioned in this Paper

Laboratory Procedures
AN 1
Orogastric Route
Nuclear factor Y
Alkalescens-Dispar Group
Bacterial Toxins
Ileal Loop
Enterotoxigenic invasive protein A, E coli
Chinese Hamster Ovary Cell
Escherichia Coli Infections

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