Vibrio cholerae

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Vibrio cholerae (also Kommabacillus) is a gram negative comma-shaped bacterium with a polar flagellum that causes cholera in humans.[1][2] V. cholerae and other species of the genus Vibrio belong to the gamma subdivision of the Proteobacteria.   There are two major biotypes of V. cholerae identified by hemaggluttination testing, classical and El Tor, and numerous serogroups. The classical biotype is found only in Bangladesh, whereas the El Tor is found throughout the world.

V. cholerae was first isolated as the cause of cholera by Italian anatomist Filippo Pacini in 1854, but his discovery was not widely known until Robert Koch, working independently thirty years later, publicized the knowledge and the means of fighting the disease.[3][4]


Genomics and evolution

The 4.0 Mbp genome of N16961, an O1 serogroup, (in America) El Tor biotype, 7th pandemic strain of V. cholerae, is composed of two circular chromosomes of unequal size that are predicted to encode a total of 3,885 genes[5]. The cholera toxin which causes the symptoms of cholera is encoded on the genome of a temperate bacteriophage, CTX-φ. The genomic sequence of this representative strain has furthered the understanding of the genetic and phenotypic diversity found within the species V. cholerae. Sequence data have been used to identify horizontally acquired sequences, dissect complex regulatory and signaling pathways, and develop computational approaches to predict patterns of gene expression and the presence of metabolic pathway components. Microarrays are being used to study the evolution of the organism. Genomic sequencing of additional strains, subtractive hybridization studies, and the introduction of new model systems have also contributed to the identification of novel sequences and pathogenic mechanisms associated with other strains.[2].

See also


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