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Genes and expression of virulence factors in Escherichia coli isolated from production animals.


The virulence factors of pathogens are expressed once they overcome the physiological mechanisms of immune response by the organism, Escherichia coli (E. coli) is a bacterium that is considered a public health problem worldwide due to the high prevalence of resistance and pathogenicity mechanisms expressed, it is mainly related to intestinal infections and is transmitted in the food chain; the genetic determinants encoding virulence factors are transferred between different species or the same, through the mechanism of horizontal gene transfer. The present review aims to describe virulence factors and genes encoding them in E. coli strains isolated from production animals and food products. The databases Medline, Lilacs, ScienceDirect, Scopus, SciELO, and Dialnet were searched using a combination of validated keywords in English (gene, virulence, virulence factor, infection, horizontal gene transfer, mutation, and production animals). Different virulence mechanisms were identified in different production environments, which vary according to the animal and bacterial species. The genes with the highest circulation were Stx1, Stx2 coding for toxins, Saa for adhesins, ehxA for enterohemolysin, eaeA for intimin, and IpfA for fimbriae. Microbiological surveillance and control in the food and animal production area are of great importance to avoid possible disease outbreaks in susceptible populations, due to the effect of virulence factors.


Escherichia coli, Food Chain, Genes, Polymerase Chain Reaction, Virulence

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