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Identification of Distinct Lipopolysaccharide Patterns among Yersinia enterocolitica and Y. enterocolitica-Like Bacteria

M. Skurnik1,2 and S. Toivonen1

1Department of Bacteriology and Immunology, Haartman Institute, Infection Biology Research Program, University of Helsinki, PO Box 21, 00014 Helsinki, Finland; fax: (358-9) 191-26382; E-mail: mikael.skurnik@helsinki.fi

2Helsinki University Central Hospital Laboratory Diagnostics, Helsinki, Finland; E-mail: p.s.toivonen@gmail.com

* To whom correspondence should be addressed.

Received February 10, 2011; Revision received February 22, 2011
The lipopolysaccharide (LPS) of strains representing various serotypes of Yersinia enterocolitica and Y. enterocolitica-like bacteria was studied by deoxycholate-PAGE and silver staining analysis. Four main types of LPS were detected based on the O-polysaccharide (O-PS): (i) LPS with homopolymeric O-PS, (ii) LPS with ladder-forming heteropolymeric O-PS, (iii) LPS with single-length O-PS, and (iv) semi-rough LPS without O-PS. Within the first three types, several subvariants were detected. Selected serotypes representing all above LPS types are sensitive to bacteriophage φR1-37 indicating that they share the phage receptor, a hexasaccharide called outer core in Y. enterocolitica O:3. Whereas phage φR1-37-resistant mutants of homopolymeric O-PS have lost only the outer core, those of ladder-forming or single-length O-PS have lost also the O-PS suggesting that in the latter ones the outer core is bridging between O-PS and lipid A–core. This work forms a basis of further structural, biochemical and genetic studies of these LPSs.
KEY WORDS: Yersinia enterocolitica, lipopolysaccharide, silver staining, deoxycholate-PAGE

DOI: 10.1134/S0006297911070133