The Genera Vibrio and Photobacterium

  • J. J. FarmerIII
  • F. W. Hickman-Brenner



Both Vibrio and Photobacterium are old genera that were described in the 1800s. The genus name Vibrio was coined by Pacini in 1854 during his studies on cholera, and it is one of the oldest names for a bacterial genus. Pacini also named the cholera bacillus, which eventually became V. cholerae, the type species for the genus Vibrio. Much of the history and literature on Vibrio came from medical microbiology and concerned cholera and other similar vibrios that early bacteriologists had difficulty in differentiating from the true cholera bacillus. In contrast, the genus name Photobacterium was coined by Beijerinck (188a) who was interested in environmental microbiology. Most of the literature on Photobacterium and on the marine species of Vibriohas come from environmental microbiologists, particularly those studying bacteria found in the sea. Unfortunately, there has been a poor interchange of ideas, information, and bacterial cultures between these two disciplines,...

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  • J. J. FarmerIII
  • F. W. Hickman-Brenner

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