Welcome to the Pathogenic World of Vibrio parahaemolyticus!

An interesting fact to begin learning about V. parahaemolyticus is the fact that this bacterium is the leading causative agent of seafood related illnesses in the United States.  This bacterium has the capability to contaminate seafood product and infect human beings.  The species is found worldwide and can survive in both liquid environments and semi-solid surfaces (in you!).  However, when transferring surfaces, V. parahaemolyticus adapts and changes itImage used with permission. 2013. Image located at http://microbewiki.kenyon.edu/index.php/Vibrio_parahaemolyticuss flagella.  In humans, the bacterium uses a toxic protein to destroy your red blood cells.  The bacterium can multiply rapidly thanks to its form of reproduction: binary fission.  It will reproduce in water, humans, and in other marine organisms.  As I stated earlier, this species is capable of causing human illness.  The specific illness is either gastroenteritis, also known as diarrhea, or septicemia.  We will learn more about this later!  To start off, lets check out the Classification of Vibrio parahaemolyticus.  

After learning about this organism, I hope you understand the importance of taking precautions when cooking seafood as well as when entering marine environments.  You should also now know about how special this small (only about a micrometer in size) bacteria is.

This bacterium is becoming a possible illness that although is not lethal to humans, is still serious.    To learn about the illness in humans go straight to the Symptoms & Treatments page.

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