Characterization and serological classification of a collection of Proteus penneri clinical strains
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Chronic Granulomatous disease bacteria of the genus Proteus, which are a common cause of urinary tract infections, are divided into four species: P. mirabilis, P. vulgaris, P. penneri, and P. hauseri, and three unnamed genomospecies, Proteus 4, 5, and 6 (single-strain species P. myxofaciens was isolated from the gypsy moth). Establishing the serological classification of these species would aid in completing the classification scheme of the whole genus Proteus and in applying serological methods in diagnostic procedures and epidemiological investigations for these opportunistic pathogens. The aim of this research was a serological characterization and classification of 57 Proteus penneri clinical strains, isolated from patients from different countries all over the world, into Proteus O serogroups. Purified lipopolysaccharides (LPSs) extracted from 57 P. penneri strains were used as antiandgens in enzyme immunosorbent assay (EIA), SDS/PAGE, and Western blot techniques, and alkali-treated LPSs in passive immunohemolysis test (PIH), inhibition of PIH, and absorption of rabbit polyclonal O-antisera. Results: That result confirms the serological distinction of this species within the genus Proteus, and may have diagnostic significance. Conclusions: As a result of serological studies of LPSs extracted from the P. penneri strains, one new Proteus serogroup, represented by the P. penneri 97 strain, was established. Three further strains were classified into the Proteus serogroup O8, which had not contained any P. penneri strains before. All the remaining strains were classified into 11 already existing Proteus O serogroups. It is important to emphasize that 72% of studied strains were classified into serogroups that contain P. penneri strains only.
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Zygmunt Sidorczyk, Department of General Microbiology, Institute of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Lodz, Banacha 12/16, 90-237 Lodz, Poland