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Escherichia coli (E. coli) that produces adhesin F18 is the main pathogen responsible for porcine post-weaning diarrhea and edema disease. The receptor for E. coli F18 has not been described in pigs, however the alpha (1,2)-fucosyltransferase (FUT1) gene on chromosome 6 has been proposed as a candidate. The objective of this study, therefore, was to investigate the relationship between FUT1 gene expression and E. coli F18 receptor in Sutai pigs of different ages (8-, 18-, 30- and 35-day-old). FUT1 gene expression was detected in 11 pig tissues with the highest level in lung, and expressed consistently at the four time points. In most tissues, FUT1 gene expression levels decreased from days 8 to 18, then continually increased on days 30 and 35, with expression around weaning time higher than that on day 8. Gene ontology and pathway analysis showed that FUT1 was involved in 32 biological processes, mainly those integral to the membrane, or involved in glycosylation, as well as regulation of binding, interestingly participating in three pathways related to glycosphingolipid biosynthesis. From this analysis and the high linkage disequilibrium between the FUT1 gene and the E. coli F18 receptor locus, we can speculate that higher expression of the FUT1 gene in small intestine is beneficial to the formation of receptors to the E. coli F18 strain and is related to the sensitivity to the pathogen. Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier B.V.


Wen-Bin Bao, Lan Ye, Chen Zi, Xian-Min Su, Zhang-Yuan Pan, Jin Zhu, Guo-Qiang Zhu, Xiao-Guo Huang, Sheng-Long Wu. Study on the age-dependent tissue expression of FUT1 gene in porcine and its relationship to E. coli F18 receptor. Gene. 2012 Apr 15;497(2):336-9

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PMID: 22305985

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