Role of uropathogenic Escherichia coli outer membrane protein T in pathogenesis of urinary tract infection

Pathog Dis. 2015 Apr;73(3):ftv006. doi: 10.1093/femspd/ftv006. Epub 2015 Jan 20.


OmpT is one of the members of the outer membrane protein family that has been identified as a virulence factor in most of the uropathogenic Escherichia coli (UPEC). However, the exact role of OmpT in the urinary tract infections (UTIs) remains unclear. To determine the role of OmpT in the pathogenesis of UPEC, an isogenic deletion mutant of ompT (COTD) was constructed by the λ Red recombination. Human bladder epithelial cell line 5637(HBEC 5637) was used to evaluate the ability of bacterial adhesion/invasion. A murine model of UTI was established to study the formation of intracellular bacterial communities (IBCs) in the process of UTIs. The cytokines were also examined during the pathogenesis. The results showed that the COTD strain was deficient in bacterial adhesion and invasion as well as in IBC formation compare to the parent strain. ELISA quantification analysis of cytokines showed that the levels of TNF-α, IL-6 and IL-8 in the serum, bladder and kidney tissues of the mice infected with COTD were lower than that of the CFT073 group. In summary, these results suggest that OmpT plays a multifaceted role in pathogenesis of UTI, including increased bacterial adhesiveness/invasiveness, formation of IBCs and upregulated proinflammatory cytokines.

Keywords: IBCs; OmpT; UPEC; UTIs; human bladder epithelial cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bacterial Adhesion
  • Bacterial Outer Membrane Proteins / genetics
  • Bacterial Outer Membrane Proteins / metabolism*
  • Cytokines / metabolism
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Endocytosis
  • Epithelial Cells / microbiology
  • Escherichia coli Infections / microbiology*
  • Escherichia coli Proteins / genetics
  • Escherichia coli Proteins / metabolism*
  • Female
  • Gene Deletion
  • Host-Pathogen Interactions*
  • Humans
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Peptide Hydrolases / genetics
  • Peptide Hydrolases / metabolism*
  • Urinary Tract Infections / microbiology*
  • Uropathogenic Escherichia coli / genetics
  • Uropathogenic Escherichia coli / physiology*
  • Virulence Factors / genetics
  • Virulence Factors / metabolism*


  • Bacterial Outer Membrane Proteins
  • Cytokines
  • Escherichia coli Proteins
  • Virulence Factors
  • ompT protein, E coli
  • Peptide Hydrolases