Feb 13, 1999

The long-term cytoskeletal rearrangement induced by rabbit enteropathogenic Escherichia coli is Esp dependent but intimin independent

Molecular Microbiology
Jean-Philippe NougayrèdeEric Oswald


Attaching and effacing rabbit enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (REPEC) of the O103 serogroup adhere diffusely on HeLa cells and trigger a slow progressive cytopathic effect (CPE) characterized by the recruitment of vinculin and the assembly of actin stress fibres. In contrast to REPEC O103, the reference human EPEC strain E2348/69 is unable to trigger the CPE. In this study, we have shown first that the fimbrial adhesin AF/R2, which mediates the diffuse adhesion of REPEC O103, was not sufficient to induce the CPE capability upon E2348/69. Non-polar mutants of REPEC O103 for espA, espB, espD and eae were then constructed. The four mutants were unable to induce attaching and effacing lesions in the rabbit ileal loop model. The esp mutants were no longer able to induce the CPE, whereas the eae mutant still induced the CPE. Each espA, -B, -D mutant could be fully complemented in trans by the corresponding cloned esp genes from both the parental strain and the CPE-negative E2348/69 strain, indicating that no single esp encodes the information needed to confer the CPE phenotype. In conclusion, the CPE is the first example of an Esp-dependent but Eae (intimin)-independent alteration of the host cell cytoskeleton by certain EPEC strains.

Mentioned in this Paper

Bacterial Proteins
Adhesins, Escherichia coli
Alkalescens-Dispar Group
Outer Membrane Lipoproteins, Bacterial
Chinchilla Rabbits
Genes, Bacterial
Fimbrial Adhesins
EaeB protein, E coli

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