Detection, Enumeration, and Isolation of Vibrio parahaemolyticus and V. vulnificus from Seafood: Development of a Multidisciplinary Protocol.

Research paper by Swapan K SK Banerjee, Jeffrey M JM Farber

Indexed on: 25 Jan '17Published on: 25 Jan '17Published in: Journal of AOAC International


<em>Vibrio parahaemolyticus</em> and <em>V. vulnificus</em> are bacterial foodborne pathogens that can cause illnesses in humans after ingestion or exposure to contaminated seafood or coastal waters. A procedure that combines microbiological, biochemical, and molecular methods was designed and optimized for the detection, enumeration, isolation, and characterization of these clinically significant <em>Vibrio</em> spp. Initially, microbiological culturing is used to resuscitate and isolate presumptive <em>Vibrio</em> spp. from chilled seafood samples. Biochemical tests are then used to analyze and select presumptive isolates at the species level, and, lastly, molecular methods, such as PCR targeting species-specific hemolysin genes, are used to confirm identification and assess the potential pathogenicity of presumptive isolates. By using artificially contaminated molluscan homogenates with known numbers of <em>V. parahaemolyticus</em>, this method yielded, on average, 90% recovery on complete agar media and 88% recovery on selective media. For <em>V. vulnificus</em>, the recovery rates were 86% (complete media) and 84% (selective media). Linearity of recovery of <em>Vibrio</em> spp. from artificially contaminated seafood homogenates supported the applicability of this method. Overall, this performance-tested protocol is easy to use, cost-effective, and fit-for-purpose, with potential for routine use in basic microbiological facilities.