Growing Concerns and Recent Outbreaks Involving Non-O157:H7 Serotypes of Verotoxigenic Escherichia coli

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Verocytotoxin-producing E. coli (VTEC) of serotype O157:H7 have been shown to be important agents of foodborne disease in humans worldwide. While the majority of research effort has been targeted on this serotype it is becoming more evident that other serotypes of VTEC can also be associated with human disease. An increasing number of these non-O157:H7 VTEC have been isolated from humans suffering from HUS and diarrhea. Recently a number of foodborne outbreaks in the USA, Australia, and other countries have been attributed to non-O157:H7 VTEC serotypes. Surveys of animal populations in a variety of countries have shown that the cattle reservoir contains more than 100 serotypes of VTEC, many of which are similar to those isolated from humans. The diversity and complexity of the VTEC family requires that laboratories and public health surveillance systems have the ability to detect and monitor all serotypes of VTEC.


Document Type: Miscellaneous

Affiliations: 1: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Health of Animals Laboratory, 110 Stone Road West, Guelph, Ontario N1G3W4 Canada 2: Health Canada, Laboratory Centre for Disease Control, Ottawa 3: Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph, Guelph, Canada 4: Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, Fergus, Ontario, Canada 5: Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Ontario, Canada 6: Health Canada, Laboratory Centre for Disease Control, Ottawa, Canada

Publication date: October 1, 1996

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