Colonizing and Virulence Factors in Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli from Peru

Fulton P. Rivera, Anicia Medina, Maribel Riveros, Theresa J. Ochoa, Maria J. Pons, Joaquim Ruiz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) ranks among the most relevant diarrheagenic pathogens. Efforts to design vaccines to fight ETEC have been focused on colonizing factors (CFs) and atypical virulence factors (AVF). An effective vaccine must account for differences in the regional prevalence of these CFs and AVFs to be truly effective in a given area. In the present study, the presence of 16 CFs and 9 AVFs, as well as the heat-stable (ST) variants (STh or STp), was established by polymerase chain reaction in 205 Peruvian ETEC isolates (120 from diarrhea cases and 85 from healthy controls). Ninety-nine (48.3%) isolates were heat-labile, 63 (30.7%) ST, and 43 (21.0%) presented both toxins. Of ST isolates, 59 (28.8%) possessed STh, 30 (14.6%) STp, five (2.4%) both STh and STp, and 12 (5.8%) were not amplified for any variant tested. The presence of CFs was associated with diarrhea (P, 0.0001). The presence of eatA as well as concomitant presence of CSI, CS3, and CS21 and of C5 and C6 was statistically related to diarrhea cases. The present results suggests that, if effective, a vaccine considering CS6, CS20, and CS21, together with EtpA, would provide protection against 64.4% of the isolates analyzed, whereas the addition of CS12 and EAST1 would lead to 83.9% coverage. Large studies are needed to establish both the ideal candidates to be considered to develop a vaccine effective in the area, and continuous surveillance is needed to detect displacement of circulating isolates that may compromise future vaccines.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)948-953
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2023


Dive into the research topics of 'Colonizing and Virulence Factors in Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli from Peru'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this