Laribacter hongkongensis has been recovered from several patients with gastroenteritis.
In this study, doctors from Hong Kong, China, investigated the association of L. hongkongensis with gastroenteritis.
The team cultured fecal samples from patients with community-acquired gastroenteritis for L. hongkongensis. Samples were also cultured from controls.
They also performed targeted food surveillance identify potential sources of the bacterium.
|The bacteria were found in freshwater fish.|
The doctors characterized all isolates from patients and food items by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis and ribotyping.
The team identified L. hongkongensis in 17 samples from 3788 patients with community-acquired gastroenteritis during a 4-month period. It was absent in the 1894 control samples.
Patients who were positive for L. hongkongensis had a recent history of travel, of fish consumption, and of eating minced freshwater fish meat.
The doctors also recovered 25 L. hongkongensis isolates from intestinal samples of freshwater fish and 2 from minced freshwater fish meat.
In 1 case, the team recovered bacteria with the same pulsed-field gel electrophoretic pattern and ribotype from 1 patient and a sample of minced freshwater fish meat.
Dr Patrick Woo and colleagues concluded, “L. hongkongensis is associated with community-acquired gastroenteritis and traveler’s diarrhea”.
“However, its causative role has not been shown”.
“Freshwater fish is one source of this bacterium”.