The emerging diversity of the electrophoretic types of Vibrio cholerae in the Western Hemisphere

J Infect Dis. 1995 Jul;172(1):173-9. doi: 10.1093/infdis/172.1.173.


Since the Latin American cholera epidemic began in 1991, 447 isolates of Vibrio cholerae O1 from the Western Hemisphere have been assayed by multilocus enzyme electrophoresis (MEE) to determine allelic variation among 16 enzyme-encoding genes. Two electrophoretic types (ETs) were identified among toxigenic isolates from Latin America: 323 were ET 4, the ET associated with the Latin American epidemic, and 29 were ET 3. Twenty-three of these ET 3 isolates had a distinctive antimicrobial resistance pattern also seen in isolates imported into the United States from Latin America and Southeast Asia. These resistant isolates had an identical ribotype and nearly identical pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) patterns. Most nontoxigenic isolates analyzed were not precursors or descendants of toxigenic epidemic strains. MEE provided a population genetic frame-work for the interpretation of PFGE and ribotype data from the isolates in this study. All three methods identified 2 distinct strains of toxigenic V. cholerae O1 currently epidemic in Latin America.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Asia, Southeastern
  • Cholera / epidemiology
  • Cholera / microbiology*
  • DNA, Bacterial / analysis*
  • DNA, Bacterial / genetics
  • Electrophoresis, Agar Gel / methods
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Enzymes / analysis*
  • Fruit / microbiology
  • Genetic Variation*
  • Humans
  • Latin America / epidemiology
  • Phenotype
  • Phylogeny*
  • Seawater
  • United States
  • Vibrio cholerae / classification*
  • Vibrio cholerae / genetics*
  • Vibrio cholerae / isolation & purification
  • Water Microbiology


  • DNA, Bacterial
  • Enzymes