This study describes the epidemiological association of 3 putative genes for virulence of uropathogenic Escherichia coli; uropathogenic specific protein (usp), a Vibrio cholerae zot gene homologue; IrgA homologue adhesin (iha), a nonhemagglutinating adhesin; and iroN(E. coli), a catechole siderophore receptor homologue. We compared the relative frequency in urinary tract infection (UTI) isolates (n=508), compared with non-UTI isolates (n=416). iroN(E. coli) occurred 2.1-3.6 times more frequently in UTI isolates than in rectal isolates (P=1.1x10-18 to P=2.7x10-5) and was associated with several uropathogenic virulence genes found on pathogenicity islands. usp occurred more frequently in isolates from patients with pyelonephritis (P=3.6x10-9), in periurethral isolates (P=.001), and in isolates from patients with UTI who were aged 40-65 years (P=.004), when compared with the rectal isolates; iha was not associated with UTI in this study.
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