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A Simple PCR-Based Macroarray System for Detection of Multiple Gene Markers in the Identification of Priority Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli

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Abstract:

Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) strains bearing the O antigenic determinants O157, O26, O111, O103, and O145 have a high rate of association with foodborne illness worldwide. To expand Canadian food inspection capability, a clothbased hybridization array system (CHAS) was developed for the identification and characterization of priority EHEC. This method targets key virulence genes (eae, hlyA, vt1, and vt2) plus the rfbE gene specifying the O157 antigenic determinant, and the wzx genes specifying the O26, O111, O103, and O145 determinants. Multiplex PCR products incorporating a digoxigenin label were detected by hybridization with an array of specific oligonucleotide probes immobilized on a polyester cloth support, with subsequent immunoenzymatic assay of the captured amplicons. This method identified the relevant markers in 85 different strains bearing various combinations of the target genes (virulence and priority O-antigen markers). None of the target genes was detected in 26 different strains of other E. coli and non–E. coli bacteria. The CHAS demonstrated 100% inclusivity and 100% exclusivity characteristics, with respect to detection of the various markers among different bacterial strains. The CHAS demonstrated 100% inclusivity and 100% exclusivity characteristics, with respect to detection of the markers among various target and nontarget bacteria. The entire procedure could be completed in less than 5 h, and is useful for the identification of priority EHEC colonies isolated from foods by using enrichment culture techniques.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4315/0362-028X.JFP-10-450

Affiliations: 1: Ottawa Laboratory–Carling, Canadian Food Inspection Agency, Building 22, 960 Carling Avenue, Central Experimental Farm, Ottawa, Canada K1A 0C6. burton.blais@inspection.gc.ca 2: Ottawa Laboratory–Carling, Canadian Food Inspection Agency, Building 22, 960 Carling Avenue, Central Experimental Farm, Ottawa, Canada K1A 0C6

Publication date: March 1, 2011

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