Chapter 4 : Pathogenicity Islands of Extraintestinal

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While intestinal strains can be grouped into at least six different pathotypes, extraintestinal strains fall into three groups: MENEC (meningitis ) strains, which cause newborn meningitis (NBM), SEPEC (septicemia ) strains, which cause meningitis and septicemia, and UPEC (uropathogenic ) strains, which are by far the most common cause of uncomplicated cases of urinary tract infections (UTIs). This chapter focuses mainly on UPEC because urinary tract infections represent, by number, the most important bacterial infectious disease in highly industralized countries. At least four pathogenicity islands (PAIs) are present in the genome of UPEC 536. Sample sequencing analysis of PAI I, PAI II, and PAIs I to IV was performed by investigating overlapping cosmid clones; the results of this analysis are discussed. Integrase genes and other bacteriophage-specific sequences may have played an important role for the evolution of pathogenic bacteria and that their presence on PAIs is one of the main characteristics of PAIs. The newly acquired sequences often form blocks of DNA which may code for virulence but also code for other distinct properties such as secretion, degradation of xenobiotic compounds, metabolic functions, and resistance to antibiotics. PAIs of UPEC strains are excellent examples for the study of the evolution of prokaryotic genomes in pathogenic and nonpathogenic microbes.

Citation: Hacker J, Blum-Oehler G, Janke B, Nagy G, Goebel W. 1999. Pathogenicity Islands of Extraintestinal , p 59-76. In Kaper J, Hacker J (ed), Pathogenicity Islands and Other Mobile Virulence Elements. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818173.ch4

Key Concept Ranking

Mobile Genetic Elements
Type 1 Pili
Type 1 Fimbriae
Urinary Tract Infections
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Figure 1

Distribution of PAIs in the UPEC genome. The indicated map positions refer to the K-12 chromosome. The position of PAI I remains unclear and is shown in dotted lines because the left junction of this PAI maps at 26.55, downstream of the gene (alanine racemase), and the right junction maps at 63.5, downstream of the tRNA gene ( ).

Citation: Hacker J, Blum-Oehler G, Janke B, Nagy G, Goebel W. 1999. Pathogenicity Islands of Extraintestinal , p 59-76. In Kaper J, Hacker J (ed), Pathogenicity Islands and Other Mobile Virulence Elements. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818173.ch4
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Figure 2

Deletion process of PAIs I and II involving the flanking direct-repeat sequences. Following deletion, one copy each of the direct repeats remains in the chromosome. The map positions and sizes of the PAIs are indicated.

Citation: Hacker J, Blum-Oehler G, Janke B, Nagy G, Goebel W. 1999. Pathogenicity Islands of Extraintestinal , p 59-76. In Kaper J, Hacker J (ed), Pathogenicity Islands and Other Mobile Virulence Elements. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818173.ch4
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Figure 3

Presence of different genomic islands in phenylalanine-specific tRNA genes.

Citation: Hacker J, Blum-Oehler G, Janke B, Nagy G, Goebel W. 1999. Pathogenicity Islands of Extraintestinal , p 59-76. In Kaper J, Hacker J (ed), Pathogenicity Islands and Other Mobile Virulence Elements. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818173.ch4
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Generic image for table
Table 1

Main features of PAIs of UPEC strains

Citation: Hacker J, Blum-Oehler G, Janke B, Nagy G, Goebel W. 1999. Pathogenicity Islands of Extraintestinal , p 59-76. In Kaper J, Hacker J (ed), Pathogenicity Islands and Other Mobile Virulence Elements. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818173.ch4
Generic image for table
Table 2

Putative virulence genes on PAIs of UPEC strains

Citation: Hacker J, Blum-Oehler G, Janke B, Nagy G, Goebel W. 1999. Pathogenicity Islands of Extraintestinal , p 59-76. In Kaper J, Hacker J (ed), Pathogenicity Islands and Other Mobile Virulence Elements. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818173.ch4
Generic image for table
Table 3

Mobility genes on PAIs of UPEC strains 536, J96 and CFT073

Citation: Hacker J, Blum-Oehler G, Janke B, Nagy G, Goebel W. 1999. Pathogenicity Islands of Extraintestinal , p 59-76. In Kaper J, Hacker J (ed), Pathogenicity Islands and Other Mobile Virulence Elements. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818173.ch4

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