Molecular Koch's postulates applied to bacterial pathogenicity--a personal recollection 15 years later

Nat Rev Microbiol. 2004 Jan;2(1):67-72. doi: 10.1038/nrmicro799.


Koch's postulates were derived from Robert Koch's work on infectious diseases, such as anthrax and tuberculosis, which still engage us to this day. These guidelines were an attempt to establish a standard for identifying the specific causation of an infectious disease and to convince sceptics that microorganisms could cause disease. They were also established to encourage an increasing number of novice microbiologists to use more rigorous criteria before claiming a causal relationship between a microorganism and a disease.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bacteria / genetics
  • Bacteria / pathogenicity*
  • Bacterial Infections / microbiology
  • Bacterial Proteins / genetics*
  • Bacterial Proteins / metabolism
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis
  • Salmonella Infections, Animal / microbiology
  • Salmonella typhimurium / genetics
  • Salmonella typhimurium / pathogenicity
  • Virulence / genetics


  • Bacterial Proteins