Cook SR, Maiti PK, DeVinney R, Allen-Vercoe E, Bach SJ, McAllister TA.
J Appl Microbiol. 2007 Oct;103(4):1206-19.
Lethbridge Research Centre, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Lethbridge, AB, Canada, and Nutratech Inc., Winnipeg, MB, Canada.
AIM: To evaluate the potential for polyclonal antibodies targeting enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) virulence determinants to prevent colonization of host cells by E. coli O157:H7. METHODS AND RESULTS: Rats and laying hens were immunized with recombinant proteins from E. coli O157:H7, EspA, C-terminal intimin or EscF. Rat antisera (IgG) or chicken egg powders (IgY) were assessed for their ability to inhibit growth and colonization-associated processes of E. coli O157:H7. Mammalian antisera with antibodies to intimin, EspA or EscF effectively reduced adherence of the pathogen to HeLa cells (P<0.05) and prevented type III secretion of Tir. Similarly, HeLa cells treated with chicken egg powder containing antibodies against intimin or EspA were protected from EHEC adherence (P<0.05). Neither egg nor rat antibody preparations had any antibacterial effect on the growth of EHEC (P>0.05). CONCLUSIONS: Antibody preparations targeting EHEC adherence-associated factors were effective at preventing adhesion and intimate colonization-associated events. SIGNIFICANCE AND IMPACT OF THE STUDY: This work indicates that immunotherapy with anti-adherence antibodies can reduce E. coli O157:H7 colonization of host cells. Passive immunization with specific antibodies may have the potential to reduce E. coli O157:H7 colonization in hosts such as cattle or humans.