- Gram-negative genus in the Proteobacteria phylum.
- Normal gut flora.
- Escherichia coli (E. coli) is the primary species in this genus.
- Most E. coli are nonpathogenic (pathogenic E. coli strains are measured separately).
Escherichia coli (E. coli) is a type of bacteria that normally live in the intestines of people and animals. However, some types of E. coli, particularly E. coli O157:H7, can cause intestinal infection. E. coli O157:H7 and other strains that cause intestinal sickness are called Shiga toxin–producing E. coli (STEC) after the toxin that they produce.
Symptoms of intestinal infection include diarrhea, abdominal pain, and fever.
More severe cases can lead to bloody diarrhea, dehydration, or even kidney failure.
People with weakened immune systems, pregnant women, young children, and older adults are at increased risk for developing these complications.
Most intestinal infections are caused by contaminated food or water. Proper food preparation and good hygiene can greatly decrease your chances of developing an intestinal infection.
Low levels may indicate reduced mucosal health and decreased protection against pathogenic E. coli.
High levels may be indicative of increased intestinal inflammatory activity.
Has been associated with Irritable Bowel Syndrome and diarrhea predominant Irritable Bowel Syndrome. It has also been reported in greater abundance with weight-loss after Gastric Bypass.
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