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VOLUME 2 , ISSUE 1 ( January-March, 2023 ) > List of Articles


Pathophysiology of Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli-induced Diarrhea

Prabhdeep Kaur, Pradeep K Dudeja

Keywords : Attaching and effacing lesion (A/E), Epidemiology, Ion transporters, LEE pathogenicity island, Type III secretion system (T3SS), Tight junctions

Citation Information : Kaur P, Dudeja PK. Pathophysiology of Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli-induced Diarrhea. 2023; 2 (1):102-113.

DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-11002-0056

License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published Online: 07-04-2023

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2023; The Author(s).


Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC) are important diarrheal pathogens of infants and young children. Since the availability of molecular diagnosis methods, we now have new insights into the incidence and prevalence of these infections. Recent epidemiological studies indicate that atypical EPEC (aEPEC) are seen more frequently than typical EPEC (tEPEC) worldwide, including in both endemic diarrhea and diarrhea outbreaks. Therefore, it is important to further characterize the pathogenicity of these emerging strains. The virulence mechanisms and pathophysiology of the attaching and effacing lesion (A/E) and the type-three-secretion-system (T3SS) are complex but well-studied. A/E strains use their pool of locus of enterocyte effacement (LEE)-encoded and non-LEE-encoded effector proteins to subvert and modulate cellular and barrier properties of the host. However, the exact mechanisms of diarrhea in EPEC infection are not completely understood. From the clinical perspective, there is a need for fast, easy, and inexpensive diagnostic methods to define optimal treatment and prevention for children in endemic areas. In this article, we present a review of the classification of EPEC, epidemiology, pathogenesis of the disease caused by these bacteria, determinants of virulence, alterations in signaling, determinants of colonization vs. those of disease, and the limited information we have on the pathophysiology of EPEC-induced diarrhea. This article combines peer-reviewed evidence from our own studies and the results of an extensive literature search in the databases PubMed, EMBASE, and Scopus.

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