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Title: Phenotypic and genotypic comparisons reveal a broad distribution and heterogeneity of hemolysin BL genes among Bacillus cereus isolates
Authors: Suwicha Thaenthanee
Amy C. Lee Wong
Watanalai Panbangred
Mahidol University
University of Wisconsin Madison Food Research Institute
Keywords: Agricultural and Biological Sciences;Immunology and Microbiology
Issue Date: 25-Nov-2005
Citation: International Journal of Food Microbiology. Vol.105, No.2 (2005), 203-212
Abstract: The presence of hemolysin BL (HBL; components L2, L1, and B)-encoding genes (hblC, hblD, and hblA) from 339 Bacillus cereus strains isolated in Thailand was determined. PCR analysis showed that all three hbl genes were detected in 222 strains (65.5%). Two, one or no hbl genes were detected in 3 (0.9%), 6 (1.8%), and 108 (31.8%) strains, respectively. Among the 222 strains in which all three hbl genes were detected, 210 (61.9%) displayed discontinuous hemolysis (DH) characteristic of HBL producers, while 12 (3.5%) showed continuous hemolysis (CH) on sheep blood agar. Among strains in which none of the hbl genes was detected, 97 (28.6%) displayed CH while 11 (3.2%) did not show hemolytic activity. Three strains in which two hbl genes were detected showed CH. hblC was present in five of six strains where only one hbl gene was detected, and all of them (designated SS-00-15, TG-00-06, TG-00-14, F-00-25, and NR-01-49) showed DH. The HpaII restriction profiles of PCR fragments amplified from the hblC-A region in these five strains using hblC forward (FHC) and hblA reverse (RHA2) primers displayed heterogeneous patterns, which indicated sequence variation. Western blot analysis using polyclonal antibodies (Pab) raised against HBL components purified from strain F837/76 showed that three of the five strains produced all three components, whereas strain TG-00-06 did not give a signal for any component, and strain TG-00-14 produced B and L1but not L2. The production of L2by these five strains was further analyzed using the Oxoid RPLA test. Three strains gave high titers (> 64) whereas strains TG-00-06 and TG-00-14 showed lower titers of 16 and 32, respectively. The data show that HBL-encoding genes are widely distributed among B. cereus isolated in Thailand and there is a high degree of heterogeneity in both the genes and proteins. This is the first report of a B. cereus strain showing DH in which all three hbl genes and their proteins were not detected by both PCR primers and antibodies derived from prototype and type strains. The data also suggest that the L2component from strains TG-00-06 and TG-00-14 may be antigenically very different from that of most B. cereus isolates. © 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
ISSN: 01681605
Appears in Collections:Scopus 2001-2005

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