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Toxin detection

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Reference Details


Toxin detection in Vibrio cholerae

Test Category:
Toxin Testing
Vibrio cholerae
Illnesses and Diseases:
  • Cholera

Isolate from urine, stool, blood, environmental, food, other.

Collection Method:

Isolate provided on appropriate culture medium for Vibrio species.

Specimen Processing, Storage and Shipping:

Send as growth on appropriate culture medium or in appropriate transport medium.  Culture vessel should be leak-proof or sealed appropriately.

Transportation of Dangerous Goods:

Shipping of specimens shall be done by a TDG certified individual in accordance with TDG regulations. For additional information regarding classification of specimens for the purposes of shipping, consult either Part 2 Appendix 3 of the TDG Regulations or section 3.6.2 of the IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations as applicable.


Patient Criteria:

Gastroenteritis, septicemia, infection, other

Accompanying Documentation:

Completed Division of Enteric Diseases requisition form.



Methods and Interpretation of Results:

PCR-based identification of genes encoding toxins and virulence factors:

  • ctx (Cholera toxin): causes severe diarrhea; indicative of toxigenic Vibrio spp.(1)
  • vhlyA (Hemolysin A): a pore-forming exotoxin; widely thought to enhance virulence of V. cholerae (accessory toxin)(2)
  • rtx (repeat/accessory toxin): associated with toxin transportation(2)
  1. Fields, P.I. et al. 1992. Use of Polymerase Chain Reaction for the Detection of Toxigenic Vibrio cholerae O1 strains from Latin American Cholera Epidemic. J. Clin. Microbiol. Aug: 2118-2121.
  2. In-house developed assays for the vhlyA and rtx genes.
Turnaround Time:

 7 calendar days. Note: Turnaround times for routine isolates may be extended during major foodborne outbreak activities or due to limited availability of resources.

Phone #: (204) 789-6009
Fax: (204) 789-5012