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      Escherichia coli Global Gene Expression in Urine from Women with Urinary Tract Infection


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          Murine models of urinary tract infection (UTI) have provided substantial data identifying uropathogenic E. coli (UPEC) virulence factors and assessing their expression in vivo. However, it is unclear how gene expression in these animal models compares to UPEC gene expression during UTI in humans. To address this, we used a UPEC strain CFT073-specific microarray to measure global gene expression in eight E. coli isolates monitored directly from the urine of eight women presenting at a clinic with bacteriuria. The resulting gene expression profiles were compared to those of the same E. coli isolates cultured statically to exponential phase in pooled, sterilized human urine ex vivo. Known fitness factors, including iron acquisition and peptide transport systems, were highly expressed during human UTI and support a model in which UPEC replicates rapidly in vivo. While these findings were often consistent with previous data obtained from the murine UTI model, host-specific differences were observed. Most strikingly, expression of type 1 fimbrial genes, which are among the most highly expressed genes during murine experimental UTI and encode an essential virulence factor for this experimental model, was undetectable in six of the eight E. coli strains from women with UTI. Despite the lack of type 1 fimbrial expression in the urine samples, these E. coli isolates were generally capable of expressing type 1 fimbriae in vitro and highly upregulated fimA upon experimental murine infection. The findings presented here provide insight into the metabolic and pathogenic profile of UPEC in urine from women with UTI and represent the first transcriptome analysis for any pathogenic E. coli during a naturally occurring infection in humans.

          Author Summary

          Animal models of infection have been used extensively to study how bacteria and other pathogens cause disease. These models provide valuable information and have led to the development of numerous vaccines and antimicrobial therapies. However, it is important to recognize how these animal models compare to human infection and to understand how bacteria cause disease in humans. This study measured gene expression in E. coli, a major cause of urinary tract infection, immediately after collection from the urine of women with bladder infection symptoms. The data showed that E. coli gene expression in the urine from women with urinary tract infection was very often similar to what had been observed in a mouse model, but these studies also identified several potentially important differences, including a bacterial surface structure that is necessary for infection in mice but not detected in most E. coli in human urine. Although more precise measurements are still needed, these findings contribute to our understanding of bacterial infection in humans and will help in the development of vaccines and treatments for urinary tract infection.

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          Most cited references71

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          Extensive mosaic structure revealed by the complete genome sequence of uropathogenic Escherichia coli.

          We present the complete genome sequence of uropathogenic Escherichia coli, strain CFT073. A three-way genome comparison of the CFT073, enterohemorrhagic E. coli EDL933, and laboratory strain MG1655 reveals that, amazingly, only 39.2% of their combined (nonredundant) set of proteins actually are common to all three strains. The pathogen genomes are as different from each other as each pathogen is from the benign strain. The difference in disease potential between O157:H7 and CFT073 is reflected in the absence of genes for type III secretion system or phage- and plasmid-encoded toxins found in some classes of diarrheagenic E. coli. The CFT073 genome is particularly rich in genes that encode potential fimbrial adhesins, autotransporters, iron-sequestration systems, and phase-switch recombinases. Striking differences exist between the large pathogenicity islands of CFT073 and two other well-studied uropathogenic E. coli strains, J96 and 536. Comparisons indicate that extraintestinal pathogenic E. coli arose independently from multiple clonal lineages. The different E. coli pathotypes have maintained a remarkable synteny of common, vertically evolved genes, whereas many islands interrupting this common backbone have been acquired by different horizontal transfer events in each strain.
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            Guidelines for antimicrobial treatment of uncomplicated acute bacterial cystitis and acute pyelonephritis in women. Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA).

            This is part of the series of practice guidelines commissioned by the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) through its Practice Guidelines Committee. The purpose of this guideline is to provide assistance to clinicians in the diagnosis and treatment of two specific types of urinary tract infections (UTIs): uncomplicated, acute, symptomatic bacterial cystitis and acute pyelonephritis in women. The guideline does not contain recommendations for asymptomatic bacteriuria, complicated UTIs, Foley catheter-associated infections, UTIs in men or children, or prostatitis. The targeted providers are internists and family practitioners. The targeted groups are immunocompetent women. Criteria are specified for determining whether the inpatient or outpatient setting is appropriate for treatment. Differences from other guidelines written on this topic include use of laboratory criteria for diagnosis and approach to antimicrobial therapy. Panel members represented experts in adult infectious diseases and urology. The guidelines are evidence-based. A standard ranking system is used for the strength of the recommendation and the quality of the evidence cited in the literature reviewed. The document has been subjected to external review by peer reviewers as well as by the Practice Guidelines Committee and was approved by the IDSA Council, the sponsor and supporter of the guideline. The American Urologic Association and the European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases have endorsed it. An executive summary and tables highlight the major recommendations. Performance measures are described to aid in monitoring compliance with the guideline. The guideline will be listed on the IDSA home page at http://www.idsociety.org It will be evaluated for updating in 2 years.
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              Expression of flagella is coincident with uropathogenic Escherichia coli ascension to the upper urinary tract.

              Uropathogenic Escherichia coli (UPEC) cause most uncomplicated urinary tract infections (UTIs) in humans. Because UTIs are considered to occur in an ascending manner, flagellum-mediated motility has been suggested to contribute to virulence by enabling UPEC to disseminate to the upper urinary tract. Previous studies from our laboratory and others have demonstrated a modest yet important role for flagella during ascending UTI. To better understand the role of flagella in vivo, we used biophotonic imaging to monitor UPEC infection and temporospatial flagellin gene expression during ascending UTI. Using em7-lux (constitutive) and fliC-lux transcriptional fusions, we show that flagellin expression by UPEC coincides with ascension of the ureters and colonization of the kidney. The patterns of fliC luminescence observed in vitro and in vivo were also validated by comparative quantitative PCR. Because fliC expression appeared coincident during ascension, we reassessed the contribution of fliC to ascending UTI using a low-dose intraurethral model of ascending UTI. Although wild-type UPEC were able to establish infection in the bladder and kidneys by 6 hours postinoculation, fliC mutant bacteria were able to colonize the bladder but were significantly attenuated in the kidneys at this early time point. By 48 hours postinoculation, the fliC mutant bacteria were attenuated in the bladder and kidneys and were not detectable in the spleen. These data provide compelling evidence that wild-type UPEC express flagellin and presumably utilize flagellum-mediated motility during UTI to ascend to the upper urinary tract and disseminate within the host.

                Author and article information

                Role: Editor
                PLoS Pathog
                PLoS Pathogens
                Public Library of Science (San Francisco, USA )
                November 2010
                November 2010
                11 November 2010
                : 6
                : 11
                [1 ]Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States of America
                [2 ]Institute for Genome Sciences and Department of Microbiology & Immunology, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, United States of America
                [3 ]Department of Urology, University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States of America
                Dartmouth Medical School, United States of America
                Author notes

                Conceived and designed the experiments: ECH ALL DAR GJF HLTM. Performed the experiments: ECH ALL. Analyzed the data: ECH ALL DAR HLTM. Contributed reagents/materials/analysis tools: DAR GJF. Wrote the paper: ECH ALL DAR HLTM.

                Hagan et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
                Page count
                Pages: 18
                Research Article
                Infectious Diseases/Bacterial Infections
                Infectious Diseases/Urological Infections
                Microbiology/Cellular Microbiology and Pathogenesis

                Infectious disease & Microbiology
                Infectious disease & Microbiology


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