Clarification of genome signatures specific for pathogenic Vibrio cholerae based on genomic information of the environmental isolates

Project Gist

Dynamics of pathogenic bacteria in natural environments in South America


Chile, Brazil, Pathogen, Genome, Natural environments

Background and Purpose

The purpose of this research project is to elucidate the cause of only specific antigen type cholera by comparative genome analysis collected from all the world and to clarify the environmental dynamics of this bacterium which contributes to the prediction of the emergence of new epidemic strains. The information on environmental isolates is very limited in the entire continent of South America and the results obtained can be expected to clarify the mechanism of diffusion of pathogenic genes and predict the appearance of new epidemic strains. Furthermore, the result will contribute to the field of health and epidemiology in the future.

Project Achievements

It was adopted for the first time as a representative of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science's bilateral exchange project and overseas academic research on scientific research subsidies or KAKENHI, triggered by the adoption of this international project (SPIRITS). This made it possible to interact further after the program was finished. In the second year of the project, the Japanese side was 7 research institutes, 1 Chilean institution, 2 Brazilian institutes, with a total of 17 people, a new research group was created. Finally, it was decided to continue collaborative research with 3 Chilean institutes.

Future Prospects

Currently, based on these achievements, I am trying to set up a larger research group as a representative. As a result, we intend to strengthen the network with researchers in South America as rare researchers in such research fields in Japan, and aim to form a state-of-the-art research network with South America that is unprecedented.


Group photo after seminar at Federal University of Rio de Janeiro
Group photo after seminar at Federal University of Rio de Janeiro

Principal Investigator


・Graduate School of Medicine
・Main research field now is microbial genomics and ecology. To proceed the research, both wet and dry experiments are used. In addition, field work in foreign countries are also included. There are three major projects now in progress. First one is to elucidate the mechanism of robustness of bacterial community in polymicrobial diseases. Second is genomic epidemiology of Vibrio species in the world to reveal why they can live in diverse environments. Third is microbes in built environments to clarify why new emerging diseases occur in developed countries.