Editor: David Gutnick
Structure and genetics of Shigella O antigens
Article first published online: 17 APR 2008
© 2008 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by Blackwell Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved
FEMS Microbiology Reviews
Volume 32, Issue 4, pages 627–653, July 2008
How to Cite
Liu, B., Knirel, Y. A., Feng, L., Perepelov, A. V., Senchenkova, S. N., Wang, Q., Reeves, P. R. and Wang, L. (2008), Structure and genetics of Shigella O antigens. FEMS Microbiology Reviews, 32: 627–653. doi: 10.1111/j.1574-6976.2008.00114.x
- Issue published online: 24 APR 2008
- Article first published online: 17 APR 2008
- Received 4 December 2007; revised 7 March 2008; accepted 13 March 2008.First published online 17 April 2008.
Vol. 34, Issue 4, 606, Article first published online: 20 APR 2010
- O antigen;
- O antigen diversity;
- O antigen gene cluster;
This review covers the O antigens of the 46 serotypes of Shigella, but those of most Shigella flexneri are variants of one basic structure, leaving 34 Shigella distinct O antigens to review, together with their gene clusters. Several of the structures and gene clusters are reported for the first time and this is the first such group for which structures and DNA sequences have been determined for all O antigens. Shigella strains are in effect Escherichia coli with a specific mode of pathogenicity, and 18 of the 34 O antigens are also found in traditional E. coli. Three are very similar to E. coli O antigens and 13 are unique to Shigella strains. The O antigen of Shigella sonnei is quite atypical for E. coli and is thought to have transferred from Plesiomonas. The other 12 O antigens unique to Shigella strains have structures that are typical of E. coli, but there are considerably more anomalies in their gene clusters, probably reflecting recent modification of the structures. Having the complete set of structures and genes opens the way for experimental studies on the role of this diversity in pathogenicity.