Enteroaggregative Escherichia coli (EAEC) is an important cause of endemic and epidemic diarrheal disease worldwide. Although not classically considered an inflammatory pathogen in the style of Shigella and Salmonella species, clinical data from patients suggests that inflammatory responses may play an important role during EAEC disease. However, the specific role of inflammation during EAEC pathogenesis has not been investigated in detail. To better understand how EAEC may induce inflammation, we have focused our attention on the intimate interactions between EAEC and the host epithelium and the subsequent induction of host cell signaling events leading to innate immune responses. Here, we discuss our recent findings on the signaling pathway by which EAEC promotes transepithelial migration of polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs), the role of aggregative adherence fimbriae in triggering this event and the implementation of human intestinal xenografts in immunodeficient mice for studying EAEC pathogenesis in vivo. Our findings suggest that EAEC shares conserved mechanisms of inducing PMN recruitment with other intestinal pathogens, providing new insight into the potential pathological consequences of EAEC-induced inflammation.
EJ Boll, C Struve, A Sander, Z Demma, KA Krogfelt, BA McCormick. Enteroaggregative Escherichia coli promotes transepithelial migration of neutrophils through a conserved 12-lipoxygenase pathway. Cell Microbiol 2012; 14: 120- 32.
PMID: 21951973 DOI: 10.1111/j.1462-5822.2011.01706.x