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Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology
Volume 2011, Article ID 258185, 17 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2011/258185
Review Article

Mouse Models of Escherichia coli O157:H7 Infection and Shiga Toxin Injection

Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, 4301 Jones Bridge Road, Bethesda, MD 20814, USA

Received 10 September 2010; Accepted 3 November 2010

Academic Editor: Oreste Gualillo

Copyright © 2011 Krystle L. Mohawk and Alison D. O'Brien. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Escherichia coli O157:H7 has been responsible for multiple food- and waterborne outbreaks of diarrhea and/or hemorrhagic colitis (HC) worldwide. More importantly, a portion of E. coli O157:H7-infected individuals, particularly young children, develop a life-threatening sequela of infection called hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). Shiga toxin (Stx), a potent cytotoxin, is the major virulence factor linked to the presentation of both HC and HUS. Currently, treatment of E. coli O157:H7 and other Stx-producing E. coli (STEC) infections is limited to supportive care. To facilitate development of therapeutic strategies and vaccines for humans against these agents, animal models that mimic one or more aspect of STEC infection and disease are needed. In this paper, we focus on the characteristics of various mouse models that have been developed and that can be used to monitor STEC colonization, disease, pathology, or combinations of these features as well as the impact of Stx alone.