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  • Author: Lixiang Zhao x
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Virulence factors and antibiotic resistance of avian pathogenic Escherichia coli in eastern China



Avian pathogenicEscherichia coli (APEC) causes serious colibacillosis and significant economic losses. Data on profiles of virulence factors and antibiotic resistances among APEC strains are crucial to the control of infection. In this study, strains were isolated from eastern China, and the prevalence of virulence factors and distribution of antibiotic resistance were determined.

Material and Methods

APEC strains were isolated and characterised by PCR for O serogroups, virulence factor genes, antibiotic resistance, and phylogenetic groups.


O78 was the most prevalent serogroup and type A was the most frequent phylogenetic group. ThefimH,feoB, andiron genes were the most prevalent among the isolates. All isolates were multiresistant, and all strains were resistant to ampicillin and tetracycline, which are widely used in the poultry industry in China.


This study provided important data on the presence of virulence genes and antibiotic resistance profiles of APEC from poultry farms in eastern China.

Open access
Pathogenicity of FtsK mutant of avian pathogenic Escherichia coli


Introduction: Avian pathogenic Escherichia coli (APEC) is a leading cause of extraintestinal infection and heavy economic losses. Imparting immunity after vaccination with live attenuated strain vaccination is an ideal strategy for infection control. This study considers an FtsK knockout mutant strain as a candidate. Material and Methods: An FtsK knockout mutant of APEC strain E058 was constructed and the pathogenicity of the mutant and wild-type strains was further evaluated in chickens. Results: The 50% lethal doses of each strain for one-day-old specific-pathogen-free (SPF) chickens challenged experimentally via trachea were 105.5 and 107.0 colony-forming units (CFU) respectively. Chickens challenged with the wild-type strain exhibited typical signs and lesions of avian colibacillosis, while those inoculated with the mutant strain showed mild pericarditis and pulmonary congestion. The growth rate of the FtsK mutant strain was much slower than the wild-type strain in the heart, spleen, liver, and lung of infected chickens. Conclusion: These results indicated that the APEC FtsK mutant can be attenuated for chickens, and that this mutant has the potential for the development of an APEC vaccine.

Open access