Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are an important health problem worldwide, with many million cases each year. Escherichia coli is the most common organism causing UTIs in humans. The asymptomatic bacteriuria E. coli strain 83972 is an excellent colonizer of the human urinary tract, where it causes long-term bladder colonization. The strain has been used for prophylactic purposes in patients prone to more severe and recurrent UTIs. For this study, we used DNA microarrays to monitor the expression profile of strain 83972 in the human urinary tract. Significant differences in expression levels were seen between the in vivo expression profiles of strain 83972 in three patients and the corresponding in vitro expression profiles in lab medium and human urine. The data revealed an in vivo lifestyle of microaerobic growth with respiration of nitrate coupled to degradation of sugar acids and amino acids, with no signs of attachment to host tissues. Interestingly, genes involved in NO protection and metabolism showed significant up-regulation in the patients. This is one of the first studies to address bacterial whole-genome expression in humans and the first study to investigate global gene expression of an E. coli strain in the human urinary tract.
|Journal||Infection and Immunity|
|Publication status||Published - 2006|