Korean J Lab Med.  2010 Oct;30(5):507-510. 10.3343/kjlm.2010.30.5.507.

Virulence Characteristics of Sucrose-fermenting Vibrio vulnificus Strains

  • 1Department of Emergency Medicine, Chosun University Medical School, Gwangju, Korea.
  • 2Research Center for Resistant Cells, Chosun University Medical School, Gwangju, Korea. shsin@chosun.ac.kr
  • 3Department of Microbiology, Chosun University Medical School, Gwangju, Korea.


We identified 6 sucrose-fermenting Vibrio vulnificus strains and examined their virulence characteristics. They were all encapsulated, motile, capable of producing toxins and utilizing transferrin-bound iron, cytotoxic to cultured cells, and virulent enough to kill mice. They could be definitely identified only by genetic identification methods such as PCR, and not by conventional culture-based identification methods such as API 20E (bioMerieux, France). These results indicate that it is essential to adopt genetic approaches as early as possible in order to avoid misdiagnosis of such strains, especially in clinical situations.


Vibrio vulnificus; Sucrose; Thiosulfate-citrate-bile salts-sucrose agar; PCR; rDNA sequencing

MeSH Terms

Bacterial Proteins/genetics
RNA, Ribosomal, 16S/genetics
Sequence Analysis, DNA
Vibrio vulnificus/genetics/growth & development/*pathogenicity


  • Fig. 1. Sucrose-fermenting Vibrio vulnificus strains forming yellow colonies on thiosulfate citrate bile salts sucrose (TCBS) agar. The M06-24/O strain (A), the 6 sucrose-fermenting V. vulnificus strains (Y-1 to Y-6; B), and other Vibrio species (C), V. alginolyticus ATCC17749 (Va) strain, V. cholerae Non O1 (Vc) strain, V. parahaemolyticus ATCC27519 (Vp) strain, and V. mimicus ATCC33653 (Vm) strain, were used. One colony of each strain grown on Heart Infusion agar was picked, streaked on TCBS agar, and incubated at 37°C for 24 hr.


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