PloS one

Seasonal Prevalence of Enteropathogenic Vibrio and Their Phages in the Riverine Estuarine Ecosystem of South Bengal.

PMID 26340543


Diarrheal disease remains an unsolved problem in developing countries. The emergence of new etiological agents (non-cholera vibrios) is a major cause of concern for health planners. We attempted to unveil the seasonal dynamics of entero-pathogenic Vibrios in Gangetic riverine-estuarine ecosystem. 120 surface water samples were collected for a period of one year from 3 sampling sites on the Hooghly river. Five enteropathogenic Vibrio species, V. cholerae (35%), V. parahaemolyticus (22.5%), V. mimicus (19.1%), V. alginolyticus (15.8%) and V. vulnificus (11.6%), were present in the water samples. The vibriophages, V. vulnificus ɸ (17.5%), V. alginolyticus ɸ (17.5%), V. parahaemolyticus ɸ (10%), V. cholerae non-O1/O139 ɸ (26.6%) and V. mimicus ɸ (9.1%), were also detected in these samples. The highest number of Vibrios were noted in the monsoon (20-34°C), and to a lesser extent, in the summer (24-36°C) seasons. Samples positive for phages for any of the identified Vibrio species were mostly devoid of that particular bacterial organism and vice versa. The detection of toxin genes and resistance to β-lactam antibiotics in some environmental enteropathogenic Vibrio species in the aquatic niches is a significant outcome. This finding is instrumental in the south Bengal diarrhoeal incidence.