Recent studies have shown that is a diarrhoeal pathogen. It may cause diarrhoea by an invasive mechanism, as it invades cultured mammalian cells and intestinal epithelial cells of experimentally inoculated rabbits . To locate the gene(s) involved in invasion, Tn mutants of a diarrhoeal isolate of were generated. Compared with the parent strain, these mutants exhibited negligible invasion and actin condensation in HEp-2 cells. Tn insertion was located in fragments of 4.9 kb and 11.1 kb of the bacterial chromosome by Southern blot. These mutants did not secrete a 28-kDa protein, which may be involved in invasion. It should be possible now to study the gene(s) involved in invasion of with these mutants. This investigation is another example of the usefulness of Tn mutagenesis in the study of bacterial virulence genes.


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