The Cholera Outbreak in Haiti: Where and How did it begin?

  • Daniele Lantagne
  • G. Balakrish Nair
  • Claudio F. Lanata
  • Alejandro Cravioto
Part of the Current Topics in Microbiology and Immunology book series (CT MICROBIOLOGY, volume 379)


In October 2010, cholera appeared in Haiti for the first time in nearly a century. The Secretary-General of the United Nations formed an Independent Panel to “investigate and seek to determine the source of the 2010 cholera outbreak in Haiti”. To fulfill this mandate, the Panel conducted concurrent epidemiological, water and sanitation, and molecular analysis investigations. Our May 2011 findings indicated that the 2010 Haiti cholera outbreak was caused by bacteria introduced into Haiti as a result of human activity; more specifically by the contamination of the Meye Tributary System of the Artibonite River with a pathogenic strain of the current South Asian type Vibrio cholerae. Recommendations were presented to assist in preventing the future introduction and spread of cholera in Haiti and worldwide. In this chapter, we discuss both the results of the Independent Panel’s investigation and the context the report sat within; including background information, responses to the report’s release, additional research subsequent to our report, and the public health implications of the Haiti cholera epidemic.



The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Navy, Department of Defense, nor the U.S. Government.

Copyright Statement

Dr. CF Lanata is a part-time contractor of the US Navy. This work was prepared as part of his official duties. Title 17 U.S.C. §105 provides that ‘Copyright protection under this title is not available for any work of the United States Government.’ Title 17 U.S.C. §101 defines a U.S. Government work as a work prepared by a military service member or employee of the U.S. Government as part of that person’s official duties.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Daniele Lantagne
    • 1
  • G. Balakrish Nair
    • 2
  • Claudio F. Lanata
    • 3
  • Alejandro Cravioto
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Civil and Environmental EngineeringTufts UniversityMedfordUSA
  2. 2.Translational Health Science and Technology InstituteHaryanaIndia
  3. 3.Instituo de Investigación NutricionalThe US Navy Medical Research Unit 6LimaPeru
  4. 4.International Vaccine InstituteSeoulKorea

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