Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
Enteroaggregative Escherichia coli (EAEC) is an emerging cause of pediatric and adult travellers diarrhea. The mechanism by which EAEC induce diarrhea is not completely known. Two serine protease autotransporter proteins, named Pet and Pic have been identified in EAEC strains. Pet has enterotoxic and cytotoxic activities, while the role of Pic in pathogenesis may lie on its mucinolytic activity. Little is known about Pet and Pic biological activities in vivo. In this study the antibody responses against these autotransporter proteins in convalescent children is investigated. Fifteen (83%) children showed specific antibodies against Pet or Pic in their sera. IgG and IgM antibodies were the main isotype found. Specific antibodies against Pic, but not against Pet, were detected in sera from age-matched control group. These data show that specific anti-Pet and anti-Pic antibodies are produced during the course of a natural EAEC infection in children.
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