The aerobactin-mediated iron uptake system encoded by pColV-K30 and other ColV plasmids has been associated with the ability of Escherichia coli strains to cause disease. We investigated whether the pColV-K30 aerobactin system is present in E. coli K1 VW187 isolated from a human neonate with meningitis. This strain exhibited a functional aerobactin-mediated iron uptake system, as assessed by a cross-feeding bioassay and by its sensitivity to cloacin, a bacteriocin that recognizes the outer membrane receptor for iron-aerobactin complexes. By using a variety of techniques, we could not find any plasmid harboring the aerobactin genes. Hybridization of restriction endonuclease-cleaved chromosomal DNA from strain VW187 with various clones containing subsets of the pColV-K30 aerobactin region showed that the aerobactin genes were located on a 10.5-kilobase-pair chromosomal HindIII restriction fragment which also contained IS1-like insertion sequences. The chromosomal aerobactin region showed a high degree of conservation when compared with the homologous region in plasmid pColV-K30, although it was located on a different restriction endonuclease site environment.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Infection and Immunity|
|Publication status||Published - 1984|