Aeromonas


Published on:
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Authors: 
Maria José Figueras Salvat (Universitat Rovira i Virgili, IISPV)Nicholas Ashbolt (University of Alberta)

Summary

The genus Aeromonas, consists of Gram-negative, oxidase positive bacilli that are considered autochthonous of aquatic environments and are commonly isolated from clinical and environmental samples. Typical habitats for these bacteria are freshwater (ground water, lakes, rivers and reservoirs), chlorinated and un-treated drinking water, bottled water, swimming pools, wastewater, reclaimed waters, brackish waters, and seawater. Aeromonas can produce several diseases in wild and farmed freshwater and marine fish species impacting the economy of the aquaculture sector. most common human clinical presentations of Aeromonas are diarrhea, wound and soft-tissue infections and bacteremia. Many infections are related to water exposure (traumatic accidents, near-drowning, natural disasters etc.), leech therapy (due to their symbiotic relationship with these bacteria) or consumption of contaminated water or food. Drinking water strains have recently been epidemiologically related to isolates from cases of human diarrhea. When investigated, Aeromonas is found at 25% of public ground drinking water systems in the USA, with concentrations ranging between 0.2 to 880 (mean 34.4) CFU/100 ml. However, due to growth in sewage, aeromonads occur in 100% of raw sewage samples (reaching 106 – 108 CFU/ml), and traditional biological treatment only reduce these load by 1 to 2 logs. However, disinfection (with chlorination or ultraviolet radiation) is effective in removing Aeromonas to below routine detection limits, but regrowth occurs post treatment, such as when water is used for agricultural irrigation. Furthermore, irrigation water can affect food quality. Risk factors favoring Aeromonas abundance in water include: retention time or stagnant piped water high turbidity and presence of organic matter, the presence of biofilms and low levels of disinfectant residual (chlorine, etc.). Recently genotypic identification has revealed that one of the most common species isolated, A. hydrophila is neither the prevailing species nor the principal pathogen. prevailing species in clinical cases and in contaminated water are A. caviae, A. veronii and A. dhakensis. Chironomid egg masses, and cyanobacterial blooms are recently identified habitats and reservoirs for Aeromonas spp. of potential public health concern.

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