Isolation of enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli from British troops in Saudi Arabia

G. A. Willshaw, Thomas Cheasty, B. Rowe, H. R. Smith, D. N. Faithfull-Davies, T. G.J. Brooks

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    16 Citations (Scopus)


    Specimens from 181 patients with diarrhoea were examined by a Military General Hospital in a 3-month period during deployment of troops to Saudi Arabia in 1990/1. DNA probes for heat labile (LT) and heat stable (ST) enterotoxin genes identified enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) in 47 of the specimens (26%) and 49 ETEC strains were isolated. The majority (55%) belonged to a novel ETEC serotype having the O-antigen 159 and a flagellar antigen designated as a provisional new type. They produced ST and the coli surface associated antigen (CS)6. Strains of serotype O6:H16 represented 22% of the ETEC examined. They produced ST, LT and CSS together with either CS1 or CS2. The remaining ETEC belonged to seven O:H serotypes. Overall, ST was the only enterotoxin gene identified in 73% of the ETEC and 67% of the strains expressed CS6 in the absence of other colonization antigens. Resistance to three or more antibiotics was observed in 53% of the ETEC, including most of the O159 strains.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)455-463
    Number of pages9
    JournalEpidemiology and Infection
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 1995


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