Escherichia coli infection in poultry and other species

Some strains of E.coli are harmless in healthy individuals, whereas others, such as avian pathogenic E. coli (APEC), are associated with a range of diseases in poultry. The risk of disease varies, depending on environmental factors such as poor housing and hygiene and the presence of virulence factors such as cytotoxins.

E. coli is not only a pathogen in poultry as it can affect a variety of species, such as cattle, sheep and pigs. In mammals, it most often manifests as an enteric or urinary tract disease.