Introduction

Vibrio cholerae is a natural inhabitant of aquatic environments.1-1-1 V. cholerae, which belongs to the O1 and O139 serogroups, is the only serogroup reported to be responsible for epidemic and pandemic forms of cholera,1-2,3-1 whereas the V. cholerae non-O1 and non-O139 strains are associated with cases of sporadic cholera and extraintestinal infections.[4] Genetic and phenotypic analyses of V. cholerae revealed that, in addition to the genes encoding cholera toxin (CT), they require the colonization toxin-coregulated pilus (TCP) and a central regulatory protein, ToxR, which coregulates the expression of CT and TCP.[3] Polymerase chain reaction (PCR), multiplex PCR, and hexaplex PCR have been used to detect V. cholerae belonging to O1, O139 , non-O1, and non-O139 serogroups and virulence-associated genes, including CT (ct), zonula occludens toxin (zot), accessory cholera enterotoxin (ace), TCP (tcp), and outer membrane protein (ompU), and a central regulatory protein, ToxR.[5] Molecular techniques have been used to detect genetic changes in V. cholerae associated with displacement of existing serogroups by newly emerging serogroups or by other serogroups, which may provide new insights into the epidemiology of cholera. This work will focus on the current status of knowledge of epidemiology, antibiotic resistance, and virulence-associated factors of V. chol-erae, which cause diarrhea in humans.

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