Current Microbiology

, Volume 75, Issue 1, pp 1–5 | Cite as

Comparison of Different Methods to Identify tdh-Positive Pathogenic Vibrio parahaemolyticus Isolates

  • Hongzhi Zhang
  • Min Chen


We evaluated the accuracy and ease of operation of three methods to identify tdh-positive Vibrio parahaemolyticus isolates, including the Kanagawa phenomenon test (KP test), a tdh gene PCR test, and a colloidal gold immunochromatographic assay (CGIA). A total of 221 V. parahaemolyticus isolates were collected from patients, freshly harvested seafood, and fresh seawater. Using the KP test, 92% of V. parahaemolyticus isolates from patients were identified tdh-positive, including four weak KP-positive isolates. The PCR test and CGIA also identified 92% of the isolates as tdh-positive. However, PCR and CGIA only confirmed one of the four weak KP-positive isolates. Similar results were obtained using the three methods to identify V. parahaemolyticus isolates from the other sources. Among the three methods, the KP test was the simplest to perform because it lacked any requirement for sample pretreatment, and was low cost, with no equipment requirements. Therefore, the KP test has been applied widely in many first-line quarantine laboratories. However, the sensitivity and accuracy of KP test were lower than those of the other two methods. PCR can identify the tdh rapidly, specifically, and sensitively. However, PCR requires equipment and facilities that are unavailable in first-line quarantine laboratories. The CGIA can compensate for the disadvantages of the other two methods by its higher sensitivity, accuracy, and ease of operation. Therefore, the CGIA has the highest potential to be used to identify tdh-positive V. parahaemolyticus isolates to guarantee food safety.


Vibrio parahaemolyticus tdh gene Kanagawa phenomenon test PCR assay Colloidal gold immunochromatographic assay (CGIA) 



We thank Changyi Chen for kindly providing Wagatsuma blood agar plates. We also thank Xuebin Xu for kindly providing TDH detection kit. This work was supported by a Grant from the Shanghai Municipal Natural Science Foundation (No. 15ZR1435000 to Hongzhi Zhang, 2015) and the 4th Three-year Action Plan for Public Health of Shanghai (The Project No. GWTD2015S01).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflicts of interest

No competing financial interests exist.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Shanghai Municipal Center for Disease Control and PreventionShanghaiPeople’s Republic of China

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