Pandemic strains of O3:K6 Vibrio parahaemolyticus in the aquatic environment of Bangladesh

TitlePandemic strains of O3:K6 Vibrio parahaemolyticus in the aquatic environment of Bangladesh
Publication TypeJournal Articles
Year of Publication2004
AuthorsIslam M.S, Tasmin R, Khan SI s l a m, Bakht HBM, Mahmood ZH a y a t, Rahman M.Z i a u r, Bhuiyan NA m i n, Nishibuchi M, Nair G.B a l a k, e y Sack R.B r a d l, Huq A, Colwell RR, Sack DA
JournalCanadian Journal of MicrobiologyCanadian Journal of Microbiology

A total of 1500 environmental strains of Vibrio parahaemolyticus, isolated from the aquatic environment of Bangladesh, were screened for the presence of a major V. parahaemolyticus virulence factor, the thermostable direct haemolysin (tdh) gene, by the colony blot hybridization method using a digoxigenin-labeled tdh gene probe. Of 1500 strains, 5 carried the tdh sequence, which was further confirmed by PCR using primers specific for the tdh gene. Examination by PCR confirmed that the 5 strains were V. parahamolyticus and lacked the thermostable direct haemolysin-related haemolysin (trh) gene, the alternative major virulence gene known to be absent in pandemic strains. All 5 strains gave positive Kanagawa phenomenon reaction with characteristic beta-haemolysis on Wagatsuma agar medium. Southern blot analysis of the HindIII-digested chromosomal DNA demonstrated, in all 5 strains, the presence of 2 tdh genes common to strains positive for Kanagawa phenomenon. However, the 5 strains were found to belong to 3 different serotypes (O3:K29, O4:K37, and O3:K6). The 2 with pandemic serotype O3:K6 gave positive results in group-specific PCR and ORF8 PCR assays, characteristics unique to the pandemic clone. Clonal variations among the 5 isolates were analyzed by comparing RAPD and ribotyping patterns. Results showed different patterns for the 3 serotypes, but the pattern was identical among the O3:K6 strains. This is the first report on the isolation of pandemic O3:K6 strains of V. parahaemolyticus from the aquatic environment of Bangladesh.