Åsa Sjöling et al publish about the global spread of enterotoxin-producing E. coli (ETEC) in Nature Genetics
Genetically related ETEC have spread globally and over time
Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) bacteria are a major cause of diarrhoea in children below five years of age in low and middle-income countries and also in travellers. A group of researchers lead by Ann-Mari Svennerholm and Åsa Sjöling at University of Gothenburg, and Karolinska Institutet and Gordon Dougan at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and with first author PhD student Astrid von Mentzer, have now conducted a study analysing the genetic composition of ETEC, which is the first large-scale whole-genome sequencing project on a global collection of ETEC. They found that several distinct and stable clusters (lineages) of ETEC with specific virulence determinants have spread worldwide.