Phenotypical characterization and adhesin identification in Escherichia coli strains isolated from dogs with urinary tract infections
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Pathogenic strains of Escherichia coli are the most common bacteria associated with urinary tract infections in both humans and companion animals. Standard biochemical tests may be useful in demonstrating detailed phenotypical characteristics of these strains. Thirteen strains of E. coli isolated from dogs with UTIs were submitted to biochemical tests, serotyping for O and H antigens and antimicrobial resistance testing. Furthermore, the presence of papC, sfa, and afa genes was evaluated by PCR, and genetic relationships were established using enterobacterial repetitive intergenic consensus PCR (ERIC-PCR). The antimicrobial that showed the highest resistance rate among the isolates was nalidixic acid (76.9%), followed by cephalotin (69.2%), sulfamethoxazole + trimethoprim (61.5%), tetracycline (61.5%), streptomycin (53.8%), ciprofloxacin (53.8%), ampicillin (46.2%), gentamicin (30.8%) and chloramphenicol (23.1%). No isolate was resistant either to meropenem or nitrofurantoin. Among the five clusters that were identified using ERIC-PCR, one cluster (A) had only one strain, which belonged to a serotype with zoonotic potential (O6:H31) and showed the genes papC+, sfa+, afa-. Strains with the genes papC-, sfa+, afa- were found in two other clusters (C and D), whereas all strains in clusters B and E possessed papC-, sfa-, afa- genes. Sucrose and raffinose phenotypic tests showed some ability in discriminating clusters A, B and C from clusters D and E.
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