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J Infect Dis. 1980 Sep;142(3):328-31.

Selective vs. nonselective media and direct plating vs. enrichment technique in isolation of Vibrio cholerae: recommendations for clinical laboratories.


The occurrence of human cholera along the Gulf of Mexico and the isolation of Vibrio cholerae O1 from the Gulf and Chesapeake Bay make it imperative that microbiology laboratories along estuaries develop the capabilities to culture for these pathogens. In attempts to devise a simplified but efficient culture procedure, a selective medium, thiosulfate-citrate-bile salts-sucrose (TCBS) agar, was compared with a nonselective medium, gelatin agar (GA), and the utility of enrichment was examined. TCBS agar detected 99% of the stools found to be positive by all techniques combined, whereas GA identified only 80%. Of acute diarrheal stools, 96% were positive on direct plating, whereas only 66% of formed stools containing V. cholerae were detected by direct plating. Stools from patients with acute diarrhea can be plated directly into TCBS agar alone; stools from persons shedding low numbers of organisms (such as contacts, carriers, or patients receiving antibiotics) should be incubated first in an enrichment broth and then on TCBS agar.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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