Molecularly defined extraintestinal pathogenic Escherichia coli status predicts virulence in a murine sepsis model better than does virotype, individual virulence genes, or clonal subset among E. coli ST131 isolates

Irene Merino, Stephen B. Porter, Brian Johnston, Connie Clabots, Paul Thuras, Patricia Ruiz-Garbajosa, Rafael Cantón, James R. Johnson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Escherichia coli ST131, mainly its H30 clade, is the leading cause of extraintestinal E. coli infections but its correlates of virulence are undefined. Materials and methods: We tested in a murine sepsis model 84 ST131 isolates that differed by country of origin (Spain vs. USA), clonal subset, resistance markers, and virulence genes (VGs). Virulence outcomes, including illness severity score (ISS) and “killer” status (>80% mouse lethality), were compared statistically with clonal subset, individual and combined VGs, molecularly defined extraintestinal and uropathogenic E. coli (ExPEC, UPEC) status, and country of origin. Results: Virulence varied widely by strain. Univariable correlates of median ISS and percent “killer” (outcomes if variable present vs. absent) included pap (ISS, 4.4 vs. 3.8; “killer”, 71% vs. 46%), kpsMII (4.1 vs. 2.3; 59% vs. 25%), K2/K100 (4.4 vs. 3.2; 77% vs. 41%), ExPEC (4.2 vs. 2.2; 62% vs. 17%), Spanish origin (4.3 vs. 3.1; 65% vs. 36%), and H30R1 subset (2.5 vs. 4.1; 35% vs. 59%). With multivariable adjustment, ExPEC status was the only consistently significantly predictive variable. Conclusion: Within ST131 the strongest predictor of experimental virulence was molecularly defined ExPEC status. Clonal subsets seemed to behave differently in the murine sepsis model by country of origin.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)327-336
Number of pages10
JournalVirulence
Volume11
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Part of this work was supported by Instituto de Salud Carlos III of Spain [grant PI13/02092]); and Spanish Network for Research in Infectious Diseases (REIPI) [RD12/0015/0004, RD16/0016/0011]; a grant from the Spanish Society of Infectious Diseases and Clinical Microbiology (SEIMC) [Ayuda a la formaci?n de la SEIMC 2014 to I.M] and co-financed by the European Development Regional Fund (ERDF), ?A Way to Achieve Europe?. I.M. was supported during part of this work by a research contract from the REIPI [RD12/0015/0004; RD16/0016/0011] and is currently supported by a R?o Hortega grant [CM18/00157] by Instituto de Salud Carlos III of Spain. This material also is based partly upon work supported by Office of Research and Development, Medical Research Service, Department of Veterans Affairs [grant # 1 I01 CX000192 01 to JRJ]

Keywords

  • E. coli
  • ExPEC
  • mouse sepsis model
  • virulence

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

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