The bacterium Escherichia coli (E. coli) was discovered by the German-Austrian paediatrician Dr. Theodor Escherich. It belongs to the family of Enterobacteriaceae.  It is a gram-negative rod-shaped bacterium, non-sporulating, motile by peritrichous flagella, facultative anaerobic, and mesophilic.

They are found in the environment, foods, and intestines of people and animals. E. coli (ATCC 8739) are a large and diverse group of bacteria. Although most strains of E. coli are harmless, other bacterial strains can cause infections. Some kinds of E. coli cause diarrhoea, while others cause urinary tract infections, respiratory illness and pneumonia, and other illnesses. E. coli is thus an important component of the biosphere.

E. coli Top facts

  • It is one of six species in the Gram-negative genus Escherichia. 
  • This organism is a common inhabitant of the bowel flora of healthy humans and other mammals
  • E.coli is one of the most extensively studied prokaryotes model organisms in the field of biotechnology and microbiology
  • Till date, more than 700 serotypes of E. coli have been identified
  • E.coli is used as a model microorganism in the field of biotechnology and microbiology
  • E.coli has an important role in the therapeutic field. Hence, used in making recombinant human insulin, antibiotics, and cancer-fighting drugs

Also Read: Top 5 Facts about MRSA

The commensal E. coli

As E. coli is a facultative anaerobe, and among the first gut colonizers. The commensal strains of E. coli  reside in the mucous layer of the colon. After the colonization, usually, the host and E. coli coexist in mutual benefit for decades. E. coli gets “food and shelter,” from the intestine and also benefits the host by producing vitamin K production and providing colonization resistance. 

On average five different commensal E. coli strains colonize a human host at any given time.

The pathogenic E. coli

E. coli is also a medically important species, as it is involved in many different types of infections.

Two major groups of pathogenic E. coli exist i.e.

1) intestinal pathogenic E. coli (IPEC), associated with infections of the gastrointestinal tract, and

2) extraintestinal pathogenic E. coli (ExPEC), associated with infections of extraintestinal anatomic sites. 

The medical diversity of this species is nicely exhibited by its classification of pathogenic E. coli. Pathogenic Ecoli strains are categorized into pathotypes. Six pathotypes are associated with diarrhoea and collectively are referred to as diarrheagenic E. coli.

  • Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC)
  • Entero-toxigenic E. coli (ETEC)
  • Entero-pathogenic E. coli (EPEC)
  • Entero-aggregative E. coli (EAEC)
  • Entero-invasive Ecoli (EIEC)
  • Diffusely adherent E. coli (DAEC)

Also Read: Antimicrobial vs Antibacterial: What is the Difference?

Use of E. coli (ATCC 8739) Micro-organism at MIS lab

At Microbe Investigations, E. coli strain (ATCC 8739) is used for a number of antibacterial efficacy tests such as ASTM E2149, AATCC-100, JISZ2801, ISO 846, EN 1276, ISO 22196, and ISO 20743 etc.  

E. coli bacterial strain is used as a test organism for assessing the antibacterial efficacy of product samples primarily including textiles, plastics, coatings, and disinfectants

In our labs, we use E. coli strain (ATCC 8739) along with other test organisms (requested by clients) to perform the antimicrobial susceptibility assays such as Minimum Inhibitory Concentration (MIC) and Zone Of Inhibition (ZOI).

Looking for the best antimicrobial testing services? To know the testing price, turnaround time or any other related questions, you can contact our experts.


Antibacterial Test | Antiviral Test | JIS L 1902 | ISO 21702 | ISO 18184 | EN 14476 | ISO 17299-3 | Arm in Cage Test | Room Test | Tunnel Test | Olfactometer Test | Tick Repellent Test | ISO 846 | ASTM E2180 | ASTM D7907-14 | ASTM E3031 | AATCC 147 | AATCC 30 | ASTM G21 | ASTM G29 | EN 16615 | EN 13697 | JIS L 1922


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