The key difference between Vibrio cholerae and Vibrio parahaemolyticus is that V. cholerae is a food-borne pathogenic bacterium that causes cholera in humans while V. parahaemolyticus is a food-borne pathogenic bacterium that causes acute gastroenteritis in humans.
Vibrio is a genus of gram-negative curved rod-shaped bacteria found in marine environments. This genus consists of many species; among them, several species are human pathogens. V. parahaemolyticus, V. vulnificus, and V. cholerae are three species that cause food-borne human infections. They are the major causes of human gastrointestinal illnesses. V. cholerae is the causative agent of cholera, while V. parahaemolyticus is the causative agent of acute gastroenteritis. Both species produce toxins.
1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is Vibrio Cholerae
3. What is Vibrio Parahaemolyticus
4. Similarities – Vibrio Cholerae and Vibrio Parahaemolyticus
5. Vibrio Cholerae vs Vibrio Parahaemolyticus in Tabular Form
6. Summary – Vibrio Cholerae vs Vibrio Parahaemolyticus
What is Vibrio Cholerae?
V. cholerae is a comma-shaped, gram-negative, facultative anaerobic bacterium that affects humans and causes cholera. Cholera is a disease characterized by watery diarrhoea and vomiting. It can lead to severe dehydration or hypovolemic shock, as well.
V. cholerae naturally occurs in brackish and saltwater. It is a highly motile bacterium with a single polar flagellum. This bacterium has many serotypes among them; some are non-pathogenic, while certain serotypes, especially the two serotypes O1 and O139, are pathogenic. V. cholerae infections occur through contaminated foods and water. Therefore, V. cholerae infections are more common in countries or in populations that live with poor water, sanitation, and hygiene infrastructures.
What is Vibrio Parahaemolyticus?
V. parahaemolyticus is a comma-shaped gram-negative facultative anaerobic bacterium found in marine and estuarine environments. This bacterium causes acute gastroenteritis worldwide. Symptoms of gastroenteritis are watery diarrhoea, abdominal cramping, nausea, vomiting, and fever. This bacterium can be responsible for wound infections as well when open wounds are exposed to seawater. This bacterium produces two hemolysins: a thermostable direct hemolysin (TDH) and/or a thermostable-related hemolysin (TRH), which are toxins related to gastroenteritis.
V. parahaemolyticus is abundant in shellfish, and consumption of raw seafood is a major cause of V. parahaemolyticus human infections. In order to prevent infections caused by this bacterium, proper storage and appropriate cooking of seafood are necessary. Furthermore, people who have open wounds should not be exposed to brackish or saltwater. Diagnosis of V. parahaemolyticas infections can be made by stool cultures. Moreover, blood and wound cultures can be observed if there are wound infections.
What are the Similarities Between Vibrio Cholerae and Vibrio Parahaemolyticus?
- cholerae and V. parahaemolyticus are two bacteria belonging to the same family.
- They are found in marine environments abundantly.
- Both are motile bacteria.
- They have a single polar flagellum.
- Structurally, they are comma-shaped and gram-negative.
- They cause food-borne human infections.
- They produce toxins and are human pathogens.
What is the Difference Between Vibrio Cholerae and Vibrio Parahaemolyticus?
The causative agent of cholera is the food-borne pathogenic bacterium called V. cholerae while the causative agent of acute gastroenteritis is the food-borne bacterium called V. parahaemolyticus. So, this is the key difference between Vibrio cholerae and Vibrio parahaemolyticus. Moreover, ulike V. cholera, V. parahaemolyticus causes wound infections as well.
The below infographic lists the difference between Vibrio cholerae and Vibrio parahaemolyticus in tabular form for side by side comparison.
Summary – Vibrio Cholerae vs Vibrio Parahaemolyticus
V. cholerae and V. parahaemolyticus are comma-shaped, gram-negative aerobic or facultatively anaerobic bacteria that cause food-borne human infections. Ingestion of food and water contaminated with these bacteria cause human gastrointestinal illnesses. V. cholera causes cholera, while V. parahaemolyticus causes acute gastroenteritis. V. parahaemolyticus also causes wound infections. Thus, this is the key difference between Vibrio cholerae and Vibrio parahaemolyticus.
1. Broberg, Christopher A, et al. “Vibrio Parahaemolyticus Cell Biology and Pathogenicity Determinants.” Microbes and Infection, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Nov. 2011.
2. Rodriguez, Jafet A. Ojeda. “Vibrio Cholerae.” StatPearls [Internet]., U.S. National Library of Medicine, 4 June 2021.
1. “Vibrio cholerae, bacteria, serogroup, magnified, 22371x” (CC0) via Pixino
2. “Vibrio parahaemolyticus 01” – Photo Credit: Janice CarrContent Providers(s): CDC/ Janice Carr – from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Public Health Image Library (PHIL) (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia