Fimbriation and curliation in escherichia coli O157:H7 a paradigm of intestinal and environmental colonization

Sonja J. Lloyd, Jennifer M. Ritchie, Alfredo G. Torres

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) serotypes, particularly E. coli O157:H7, possess a variety of fimbrial and afimbrial adhesins which have emerged as important contributors to intestinal colonization. E. coli O157:H7 possesses two chromosomal operons encoding long polar fimbriae (Lpf), which have been found to influence adherence in vitro and colonization in vivo. In a recent Infection and Immunity paper, we further explored the role of Lpf in E. coli O157:H7 intestinal colonization by using the infant rabbit model of STEC infection. We found that an E. coli O157:H7 Lpf-deficient mutant was outcompeted in the rabbit intestine by its parental strain, which may suggest that Lpf contributes to colonization. In contrast, the Lpf-deficient mutant showed an increased adherence to cultured intestinal epithelial cells, and we discovered that this strain overexpressed curli fibers. In this addendum article, we provide a continued perspective on the predicted roles of Lpf and curli, both in vivo and in vitro.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)272-276
Number of pages5
JournalGut Microbes
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Colonization
  • Curli
  • E. coli O157:H7
  • Enterohemorrhagic E. coli
  • Fimbria
  • Long polar fimbriae

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Gastroenterology
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Microbiology


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