f The Role of Alpha Haemolysin in the Virulence of Escherichia Coli for Mice
- Authors: Margaret A. Linggood*, P. L. Ingram
- *Present address: Unilever Research, Colworth House, Sharnbrook, Bedford MK44 1LQ.
- First Published Online: 01 February 1982, Journal of Medical Microbiology 15: 23-30, doi: 10.1099/00222615-15-1-23
- Subject: Articles
- Issue Published:
Transfer of an Hly plasmid determining production of α haemolysin to a non-haemolytic strain of Escherichia coli increased the virulence of the strain for mice. Injections of non-toxic amounts of α haemolysin, phenylhydrazine, haemoglobin, iron or manganese salts simulated the effect of the Hly plasmid by stimulating bacterial growth. Active or passive immunisation against α haemolysin protected mice on challenge with haemolytic E. coli by inhibiting in-vivo proliferation of the strain. Protection was eliminated by administration of iron salts at the time of challenge. The Hly plasmid probably acts as a virulence factor by enabling haemolytic strains of E. coli to obtain iron for growth from the lysed erythrocytes of infected animals.
© 1982 Pathological Society of Great Britain and Ireland | Published by the Microbiology Society
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