The Physiology of Campylobacter Species and Its Relevance to Their Role as Foodborne Pathogens

Int J Food Microbiol. 2002 Apr 5;74(3):177-88. doi: 10.1016/s0168-1605(01)00678-x.


Campylobacter jejuni and C. coli are recognised as the leading causes of bacterial foodborne diarrhoeal disease throughout the development world. While most foodborne bacterial pathogens are considered to be relatively robust organisms, as a consequence of the necessity to survive the inimical conditions imposed by food processing and preservation, Campylobacter species have uniquely fastidious growth requirements and an unusual sensitivity to environmental stress. Campylobacters also lack many of the well characterised adaptive responses that can be collated with resistance to stress in other bacteria. The aim of this review is to outline the unusual physiology of campylobacters (C. jejuni and C. coli) and to describe how this influences their role as foodborne pathogens.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Campylobacter / pathogenicity
  • Campylobacter / physiology*
  • Campylobacter Infections / microbiology*
  • Campylobacter coli / pathogenicity
  • Campylobacter coli / physiology
  • Campylobacter jejuni / pathogenicity
  • Campylobacter jejuni / physiology
  • Developing Countries
  • Diarrhea / microbiology*
  • Food Microbiology*
  • Humans
  • Temperature