, Volume 6, Issue 3, pp 378–389 | Cite as

Predicting the Distribution of Vibrio spp. in the Chesapeake Bay: A Vibrio cholerae Case Study

  • Guillaume Constantin de MagnyEmail author
  • Wen Long
  • Christopher W. Brown
  • Raleigh R. Hood
  • Anwar Huq
  • Raghu Murtugudde
  • Rita R. Colwell
Original Contribution


Vibrio cholerae, the causative agent of cholera, is a naturally occurring inhabitant of the Chesapeake Bay and serves as a predictor for other clinically important vibrios, including Vibrio parahaemolyticus and Vibrio vulnificus. A system was constructed to predict the likelihood of the presence of V. cholerae in surface waters of the Chesapeake Bay, with the goal to provide forecasts of the occurrence of this and related pathogenic Vibrio spp. Prediction was achieved by driving an available multivariate empirical habitat model estimating the probability of V. cholerae within a range of temperatures and salinities in the Bay, with hydrodynamically generated predictions of ambient temperature and salinity. The experimental predictions provided both an improved understanding of the in situ variability of V. cholerae, including identification of potential hotspots of occurrence, and usefulness as an early warning system. With further development of the system, prediction of the probability of the occurrence of related pathogenic vibrios in the Chesapeake Bay, notably V. parahaemolyticus and V. vulnificus, will be possible, as well as its transport to any geographical location where sufficient relevant data are available.


Vibrio cholerae forecast Chesapeake Bay habitat models pathogens 



GCdeM and RRC were funded in part by National Institutes of Health Grant No. 1 R01 A139129 and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Grant No. S0660009. WL and RH were funded by NOAA Grant No. NA05NOS4781222 and NA05NOS4781226 and CWB by the NOAA Center for Satellite Applications and Research. Authors gratefully acknowledge Jiangtao Xu for her contribution to the hindcast capability.


  1. Arakawa A, Lamb VR (1977) Methods of Computational Physics, New York: Academic Press, pp 174–265Google Scholar
  2. Blake P (1994) Endemic cholera in Australia and the Unites States. In: Vibrio cholerae and Cholera: Molecular to Global Perspectives, Wachsmuth PBIK, Olsvik O (editors), Washington, DC: American Society of Microbiology, pp 309–320Google Scholar
  3. Boesch DF (editor) (2008) Global Warming and the Free State: Comprehensive Assessment of Climate Change Impacts in Maryland, Cambridge, MD: University of Maryland Center for Environmental ScienceGoogle Scholar
  4. Broutin H, Guégan J-F, Elguero E, Simondon F, Cazelles B (2005) Large-scale comparative analysis of pertussis population dynamics: periodicity, synchrony, and impact of vaccination. American Journal of Epidemiology 161:1159–1167CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Cazelles B, Chavez M, Berteaux D, Menard F, Vik JO, Jenouvrier S, et al. (2008) Wavelet analysis of ecological time series. Oecologia 156:287–304CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Chaiyanan S, Chaiyanan S, Huq A, Maugel T, Colwell RR (2001) Viability of the nonculturable Vibrio cholerae O1 and O139. Systematic and Applied Microbiology 24:331–341CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Chambers JS (1938) The Conquest of Cholera. America’s Greatest Scourge, New York: MacmillanGoogle Scholar
  8. Chesapeake Bay Foundation (2007) Climate Change and the Chesapeake Bay: Challenges, Impacts, and the Multiple Benefits of Agricultural Conservation Work, Annapolis, MD: Chesapeake Bay FoundationGoogle Scholar
  9. Collins AE (2003) Vulnerability to coastal cholera ecology. Social Science and Medicine 57:1397–1407CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Colwell RR, Kaper J, Joseph SW (1977) Vibrio cholerae, Vibrio parahaemolyticus, and other vibrios: occurrence and distribution in Chesapeake Bay. Science 198:394–396Google Scholar
  11. Colwell RR, Seidler RJ, Kaper J, Joseph SW, Garges S, Lockman H, et al. (1981) Occurrence of Vibrio cholerae serotype O1 in Maryland and Louisiana estuaries. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 41:555–558Google Scholar
  12. Constantin de Magny G, Guégan JF, Petit M, Cazelles B (2007) Regional-scale climate-variability synchrony of cholera epidemics in West Africa. BMC Infectious Diseases 7:20CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Constantin de Magny G, Murtugudde R, Sapiano MR, Nizam A, Brown CW, Busalacchi AJ, et al. (2008) Environmental signatures associated with cholera epidemics. Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 105:17676–17681CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Daniels NA, MacKinnon L, Bishop R, Altekruse S, Ray B, Hammond RM, et al. (2000) Vibrio parahaemolyticus infections in the United States, 1973–1998. Journal of Infectious Diseases 181:1661–1666CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Decker MB, Brown CW, Hood RR, Purcell JE, Gross TF, Matanoski JC, et al. (2007) Predicting the distribution of the scyphomedusa Chrysaora quinquecirrha in Chesapeake Bay. Marine Ecology-Progress Series 329:99–113CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Ek MB, Mitchell KE, Lin Y, Rogers E, Grunmann P, Koren V, et al. (2003) Implementation of Noah land surface model advances in the National Centers for Environmental Prediction operational mesoscale Eta model. Journal of Geophysical Research-Atmospheres 108:16Google Scholar
  17. Frei C, Scholl R, Fukutome S, Schmidli J, Vidale PL (2006) Future change of precipitation extremes in Europe: intercomparison of scenarios from regional climate models. Journal of Geophysical Research—Atmospheres 111:22CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Giorgi F, Diffenbaugh N (2008) Developing regional climate change scenarios for use in assessment of effects on human health and disease. Climate Research 36:141–151CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Gleason KL, Lawrimore JH, Levinson DH, Karl TR, Karoly DJ (2008) A revised US climate extremes index. Journal of Climate 21:2124–2137CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Goudarzi S (2006) Flocking to the coast: world’s population migrating into danger. Available: (accessed March 13, 2009)
  21. Grenfell BT, Bjornstad ON, Kappey J (2001) Travelling waves and spatial hierarchies in measles epidemics. Nature 414:716–723CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Grim CJ, Taviani E, Alam M, Huq A, Sack B, Colwell RR (2008) Occurrence and expression of luminescence in Vibrio cholerae. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 74:708–715CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Heidelberg JF, Heidelberg KB, Colwell RR (2002) Seasonality of Chesapeake Bay bacterioplankton species. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 68:5488–5497CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Huq A, Small EB, West PA, Huq MI, Rahman R, Colwell RR (1983) Ecological relationships between Vibrio cholerae and planktonic crustacean copepods. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 45:275–283Google Scholar
  25. Huq A, West PA, Small EB, Huq MI, Colwell RR (1984) Influence of water temperature, salinity, and pH on survival and growth of toxigenic Vibrio cholerae serovar O1 associated with live copepods in a laboratory microcosms. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 48:420–424Google Scholar
  26. Hurrell JW, Kushnir Y, Visbeck M (2001) Climate—the North Atlantic oscillation. Science 291:603–605CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Kausrud KL, Mysterud A, Steen H, Vik JO, Ostbye E, Cazelles B, et al. (2008) Linking climate change to lemming cycles. Nature 456:93–U93CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Kelly MT (1982) Effect of temperature and salinity on Vibrio (Beneckea) vulnificus occurrence in a Gulf Coast environment. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 44:820–824Google Scholar
  29. Kemp WM, Boynton WR, Adolf JE, Boesch DF, Boicourt WC, Brush G, et al. (2005) Eutrophication of Chesapeake Bay: historical trends and ecological interactions. Marine Ecology-Progress Series 303:1–29CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Leclerc H, Schwartzbrod L, Dei-Cas E (2002) Microbial agents associated with waterborne diseases. Critical Reviews in Microbiology 28:371–409CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Lehodey P, Senina I, Murtugudde R (2008) A spatial ecosystem and populations dynamics model (SEAPODYM)—modeling of tuna and tuna-like populations. Progress in Oceanography 78:304–318CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Lipp EK, Huq A, Colwell RR (2002) Effects of global climate on infectious disease: the cholera model. Clinical Microbiology Reviews 15:757–770CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Louis VR, Russek-Cohen E, Choopun N, Rivera IN, Gangle B, Jiang SC, et al. (2003) Predictability of Vibrio cholerae in Chesapeake Bay. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 69:2773–2785CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Madsen T, Figdor E (2007) When It Rains, It Pours: Global Warming and the Rising Frequency of Extreme Precipitation in the United States, Washington DC: Environment America Research & Policy Center, 48 pGoogle Scholar
  35. Mantua NJ, Hare SR, Zhang Y, Wallace JM, Francis RC (1997) A Pacific interdecadal climate oscillation with impacts on salmon production. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society 78:1069–1079CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Miliotis M, Watkins W (2000) Draft Risk Assessment on the Public Health Impact of Vibrio parahaemolyticus in Raw Molluscan Shellfish, Washington DC: FDAGoogle Scholar
  37. Miller WD, Harding LW (2007) Climate forcing of the spring bloom in Chesapeake Bay. Marine Ecology-Progress Series 331:11–22CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Murtugudde R (2009a) Observational needs for sustainable coastal prediction and management. In: Management and Sustainable Development of Coastal Zone Environment, Ramanathan AL, Bhattacharya P, Nepuna B (editors), New York: SpringerGoogle Scholar
  39. Murtugudde R (2009b) Regional Earth System Prediction: a decision-making tool for sustainability? Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability 1:37–45Google Scholar
  40. Murtugudde R (2010) Observational needs for regional Earth System Prediction. In: Proceedings of OceanObs09: Sustained Ocean Observations and Information for Society (Vol 2), Venice, Italy, September 21–25, 2009, Hall J, Harrison DE, Stammer D (editors), Newmarket, New Zealand: ESA Publication WPP-306Google Scholar
  41. Najjar RG, Walker HA, Anderson PJ, Barron EJ, Bord RJ, Gibson JR, et al. (2000) The potential impacts of climate change on the mid-Atlantic coastal region. Climate Research 14:219–233CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Neff R, Chang HJ, Knight CG, Najjar RG, Yarnal B, Walker HA (2000) Impact of climate variation and change on mid-Atlantic region hydrology and water resources. Climate Research 14:207–218CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Pasternack GB, Hinnov LA (2003) Hydrometeorological controls on water level in a vegetated Chesapeake Bay tidal freshwater delta. Estuarine Coastal and Shelf Science 58:367–387CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Patz JA, Engelberg D, Last J (2000) The effects of changing weather on public health. Annual Review of Public Health 21:271–307CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Sankarasubramanian A, Vogel RM, Limbrunner JF (2001) Climate elasticity of streamflow in the United States. Water Resources Research 37:1771–1781CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Singleton FL, Attwell R, Jangi S, Colwell RR (1982) Effects of temperature and salinity on Vibrio cholerae growth. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 44:1047–1058Google Scholar
  47. Tamplin M, Rodrick GE, Blake NJ, Cuba T (1982) Isolation and characterization of Vibrio vulnificus from 2 Florida estuaries. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 44:1466–1470Google Scholar
  48. Taylor AH, Allen JI, Clark PA (2002) Extraction of a weak climatic signal by an ecosystem. Nature 416:629–632CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Trenberth KE (1997) The definition of El Nino. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society 78:2771–2777CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Watkins JD, Huq A (2002) The relationship between oceans and human health. In: Critical Issues in Global Health, Koop CE, Pearson CE, Schwarz MR (editors), San Francisco: WileyGoogle Scholar
  51. Weissman JB, DeWitt WE, Thompson J, Muchnick CN, Portnoy BL, Feeley JC, et al. (1974) A case of cholera in Texas, 1973. American Journal of Epidemiology 100:487–498Google Scholar
  52. Wilkin JL, Arango HG, Haidvogel DB, Lichtenwalner CS, Glenn SM, Hedstrom KS (2005) A regional ocean modeling system for the long-term ecosystem observatory. Journal of Geophysical Research-Oceans 110:13CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Wright AC, Hill RT, Johnson JA, Roghman MC, Colwell RR, Morris JG (1996) Distribution of Vibrio vulnificus in the Chesapeake Bay. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 62:717–724Google Scholar
  54. Xu HS, Roberts N, Singleton FL, Attwell RW, Grimes DJ, Colwell RR (1982) Survival and viability of nonculturable Escherichia coli and Vibrio cholerae in the estuarine and marine-environment. Microbial Ecology 8:313–323CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© International Association for Ecology and Health 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Guillaume Constantin de Magny
    • 1
    Email author
  • Wen Long
    • 2
    • 3
  • Christopher W. Brown
    • 2
    • 4
  • Raleigh R. Hood
    • 3
  • Anwar Huq
    • 5
  • Raghu Murtugudde
    • 2
  • Rita R. Colwell
    • 1
    • 5
    • 6
  1. 1.University of Maryland Institute for Advanced Computer StudiesCollege ParkUSA
  2. 2.Earth System Science Interdisciplinary CenterUniversity of MarylandCollege ParkUSA
  3. 3.Horn Point LaboratoryUniversity of Maryland Center for Environmental ScienceCambridgeUSA
  4. 4.National Oceanic and Atmospheric AdministrationCollege ParkUSA
  5. 5.Maryland Pathogen Research Institute, University of MarylandCollege ParkUSA
  6. 6.Department of Environmental HealthJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public HealthBaltimoreUSA

Personalised recommendations