Natural transformation in Vibrio parahaemolyticus: A rapid method to create genetic deletions

Suneeta Chimalapati, Marcela de Souza Santos, Kelly Servage, Nicole J. De Nisco, Ankur B. Dalia, Kim Orth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


The Gram-negative bacterium Vibrio parahaemolyticus is an opportunistic human pathogen and the leading cause of seafood-borne acute gastroenteritis worldwide. Recently, this bacterium was implicated as the etiologic agent of a severe shrimp disease with consequent devastating outcomes to shrimp farming. In both cases, acquisition of genetic material via horizontal transfer provided V. parahaemolyticus with new virulence tools to cause disease. Dissecting the molecular mechanisms of V. parahaemolyticus pathogenesis often requires manipulating its genome. Classically, genetic deletions in V. parahaemolyticus are performed using a laborious, lengthy, multistep process. Here, we describe a fast and efficient method to edit this bacterium's genome based on V. parahaemolyticus natural competence. Although this method is similar to one previously described, V. parahaemolyticus requires counterselection for curing of acquired plasmids due to its recalcitrant nature of retaining extrachromosomal DNA. We believe this approach will be of use to the Vibrio community.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere00032-18
JournalJournal of bacteriology
Issue number15
StatePublished - Aug 1 2018


  • EspD
  • Natural transformation systems
  • T2SS
  • Vibrio parahaemolyticus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology


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