New study confirms the existence of carnivores

In September 2022, Hurricane Ian hit Southwest Florida, causing various disasters Vibrio Bacteria that can cause illness and death in humans, according to new study published in the journal Mbio.

A team of researchers from the University of Maryland, the University of Florida, and microbiome company EzBiome combined genome sequencing and satellite and environmental data to detect several pathogenic bacteria. Vibrio species in water and oyster samples from Lee County, Florida, a coastal region devastated by Hurricane Ian. The samples were collected in October 2022 and revealed the presence of two species of particular concern: Vibrio parahaemolyticusand Vibrio vulnificus.

“We were very surprised that we were able to detect the presence of these pathogens without any difficulty,” said Rita Colwell, senior author of the study and Distinguished Professor at the University of Maryland Institute for Advanced Computing Studies (UMIACS). Vibrio the past 50 years.

The study’s results correspond with an increase in reports Vibrio vulnificus In October 2022, cases of Vibrio infection appeared in Florida. Lee County, which has the highest number of cases in the state, reported 38 vibriosis-related infections and 11 deaths, according to the Florida Department of Health.

Vibrio Bacteria occur naturally in the ocean, living in symbiotic relationships with crustaceans, zooplankton and bivalves.When the bacteria come into contact with humans, some species may cause an infection called vibriosis, but side effects depend on the type of bacteria Vibrio and severity of infection. Vibrio parahaemolyticus Can cause gastroenteritis and wound infection, while Vibrio vulnificus This species can cause necrotizing fasciitis, a flesh-eating infection, and kills one in five people infected.

People can become infected with Vibrio by eating raw or undercooked seafood or by contact with seawater in an open wound.because Vibrio It thrives in warm, salty water, and hurricanes and floods can increase exposure.

Some conditions conducive to growth during and after Hurricane Ian Vibrio bacteria, including rainfall, changes in sea surface temperatures and the concentration of chlorophyll in the ocean, which can indicate the density of phytoplankton and subsequently zooplankton in an area.Where plankton blooms occur, researchers have found massive Vibrio bacteria.

As warming oceans are expected to trigger wetter, more powerful storms like Iain, coastal communities could see more Vibriofuture infections.

“Estos Vibrio Typically grow well between 15 and 40 degrees Celsius (59-104 degrees Fahrenheit), so as temperatures rise, their reproductive time shortens and they divide faster and faster,” Colwell said. “Seawater changes Warmth—mixed with fresh water, which creates optimal salinity—really promotes biological growth. Vibrio, so this is a very serious problem. “

Although environmental conditions in Florida were ripe for Vibrio infections after Hurricane Ian, these cases were not limited to the South. In August 2023, three people died in New York and Connecticut Vibrio vulnificus Infect.

Colwell and her co-authors, who include Kyle Brumfield (PhD ’23, Marine Estuarine Environmental Sciences) and Anwar Huq, UMD research professor of cell biology and molecular genetics, predicted recent trends in vibriosis cases based on trends in environmental conditions in the Northeast. Surge America. Colwell said the rapidly warming Chesapeake Bay could also be affected as ocean temperatures continue to rise.

“Florida’s water is much warmer than the Chesapeake Bay right now, but it’s getting warmer along much of the East Coast,” Colwell said. “This is a threatening sign that we may see more Vibrio vulnificus Infect.

Colwell and her co-authors noted that while they only analyzed a limited number of samples, their findings illustrate the potential of genetic analysis, environmental data and remote sensing to improve public health by proactively detecting and characterizing Vibrio pathogens.

They also called for further investigation to quantify the prevalence Vibrio Bacteria in different locations, seasons and environmental conditions. Colwell said the research is not only critical for public health but also an important step toward understanding climate change.

“On the positive side, knowing that these infections are associated with increased variability in climate change, maybe now is the time to develop mechanisms to understand and mitigate it,” Colwell said. “Climate change and flooding are clearly linked to infectious diseases , we need to take it seriously.”


Thesis “Genomic Diversity” Vibrio kind.Metagenomic analysis of pathogens in Florida Gulf Coast waters following Hurricane Ian” published in Mbio October 16, 2023.

This work was supported by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences of the National Institutes of Health (Award No. R01ES030317A), the National Science Foundation (Award Nos. OCE1839171, CCF1918749, and CBET1751854), and NASA (Award Nos. 80NSSC20K0814 and 80NSSC22K1044). This story does not necessarily reflect the views of these organizations.

Disclaimer: The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of press releases posted to EurekAlert! Organizations that contribute or use any information through the EurekAlert system.

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