Survival of Shigella dysenteriae type 1 on fomites

M. S. Islam, M. A. Hossain, S. I. Khan, M. N.H. Khan, R. B. Sack, M. J. Albert, A. Huq, R. R. Colwell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Studies have shown that various objects, such as utensils, toys, and clothes, can serve as vehicles for transmission of Shigella spp. Shigellae can become viable but non-culturable (VBNC) when exposed to various environmental conditions as shown in earlier studies. The present study was carried out to detect VBNC Shigella dysenteriae type 1 on various fomites by direct viable counting, polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and fluorescent antibody methods. S. dysenteriae type 1 was inoculated onto cloth, wood, plastic, aluminum, and glass objects. Results showed that 1.5-4.0 hours after inoculation, S. dysenteriae type 1 became non-culturable, and after five days, non-culturable but viable S. dysenteriae type 1 could be detected by both PCR and fluorescent antibody techniques. Fomites can be considered an important potential route of transmission of VBNC S. dysenteriae type 1 and a significant factor in the epidemiology of shigellosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)177-182
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Health Population and Nutrition
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2001


  • Bacillary
  • Bangladesh
  • Diagnosis
  • Disease transmission
  • Dysentery
  • Laboratory
  • Shigella dysenteriae

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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