Chromobacterium Sepsis
URL: http://www.sma.org.sg/smj/3806/articles/3806cr2.htm
Source: Singapore Medical Journal, "Case Report and Review of Chromobacterium Sepsis - A Gram-
Negative Sepsis Mimicking Melioidosis"
"Chromobacterium violaceum is a soil and water inhabitant that has only recently been identified as a
human pathogen. It can cause severe life-threatening sepsis with metastatic abscesses similar to
melioidosis..."



Matthew McKinney: Chromobacterium Lake Bacteria Eating Boy Alive
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http://www.nowpublic.com/health/matthew-mckinney-chromobacterium-lake-bacteria-eating-boy-alive
by Tina Kells | June 25, 2009 at 12:30 pm
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A bacteria called Chromobacterium violaceum has left 14-year old Matthew McKinney disfigured and
fighting for his life.  The common lake bacteria is literally eating the boy alive and doctors are racing to
contain its effects. Fewer than 150 cases of Chromobacterium violaceum infection have been reported in
the past 82 years.


It is believed that Matthew McKinney came into contact with the evastating water-born bacteria while
swimming in Hope Mills Lake in Georgia on June 14, 2009.  Matthew and his friend were swimming in the
lake where it is believed he was exposed to the body eating bacteria.


The symptoms and progression of Chromobacterium violaceum are shocking.  The lake born bacteria is
so rare that doctors did not recognize it right away and treated Matthew McKinney for everything from flu
to sinusitis.  When lesions began to develop on his skin doctors finally started to consider a rapidly
spreading and aggressive tissue eating bacterial infection.


    About 2 a.m. on June 15, Matthew woke his mother, Chelseann, to inform her he wasn't feeling well.
    He had a fever and a runny nose. Later that morning, around 7 a.m., she took Matthew to the
    emergency room at Cape Fear Valley Medical Center. He was given antibiotics, the father said, and
    told to come back if the medicine did not work.

    McKinney said by June 18 that Matthew began complaining that his nose hurt. He continually was
    running a fever as high as 103 degrees. His mother, according to the father, took him back to the
    hospital, where he was prescribed another antibiotic and Tylenol 3.

    On Friday, Brian McKinney said Matthew's nose began to show some swelling as did his left cheek
    and gums. He was admitted to the hospital that night.

    Overnight into Saturday morning, the father said Matthew began saying he was experiencing a lot of
    pain in his face. A gap began to develop between some teeth, which was unusual since he recently
    had finished wearing braces, the father said. Two of Matthew's teeth fell out Saturday because the
    bone in his gums were decaying.

    By Saturday morning, the father said, several specialists had been called in and doctors decided to
    conduct a surgery to drain Matthew's sinuses, believing he had sinusitis. But after a three-hour
    surgery, according to the father, doctor told the family they could find nothing, and contacted UNC
    Hospitals.
Source: fayobserver.com

Once the Chromobacterium violaceum bacteria began to eat at Matthew McKinney's face doctors had to
take quick action.  They operated in a life and death surgery to try to remove the bacteria that was eating
him alive.  They ended up removing Matthew's nose cartilage to the bone as well as the palate to prevent
the spread.

According to the CDC the Chromobacterium violaceum is found regularly in nature, particularly in warm-
water lakes throughout the Southeastern US.  While the lake bacteria is plentiful, infection from contact is
very rare and doctors still do not know what can cause the Chromobacterium violaceum to eat at human
tissue.

The CDC says that the case of the lake bacteria eating Matthew McKinney alive is not cause for alarm and
does not require a public health advisory to be issued.  Closing Hope Mills Lake was also deemed an
unnecessary step as it is believed that Matthew McKinney's infection is an isolated case.

While it will be a long struggle with reconstructive surgery and strong anti-biotic medications, Matthew
McKinney is expected to recover from his battle with the vicious Chromobacterium violaceum infection.
None of the other teens swimming with Matthew McKinney at the time he was exposed to the lake bacteria
have demonstrated symptoms of infection.
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Chromobacterium violaceum in siblings, Brazil.

http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Chromobacterium+violaceum+in+siblings,+Brazil-a0136338365


Chromobacterium violaceum, a saprophyte saprophyte (săp`rəfīt'), any plant that depends on dead plant
or animal tissue for a source of nutrition and metabolic energy, e.g., most fungi (molds) and a few
flowering plants, such as Indian pipe and some orchids.  bacterium found commonly in soil and water in
tropical and subtropical climates, is a rare cause of severe, often fatal, human disease. We report 1
confirmed and 2 suspected cases of C. violaceum septicemia septicemia (sĕptĭsē`mēə), invasion of the
bloodstream by virulent bacteria that multiply and discharge their toxic products. The disorder, which is
serious and sometimes fatal, is commonly known as blood poisoning. , with 2 fatalities, in siblings after
recreational exposure in northeastern Brazil.

Chromobacterium violaceum is an aerobic, gram-negative bacillus usually found as a saprophyte in soil
and water in tropical and subtropical regions (1). Despite ubiquitous distribution, human infection with this
organism is rare. Since the first human case was described in Malaysia in 1927 (2), <150 human cases
have been reported worldwide, mainly in Asia, the United States, Australia, and Africa (3-6). Only 3 cases
have been reported in South America, 1 in Argentina (7) and 2 in Brazil (8,9).

Human infection with this organism results in systemic and severe disease with a high fatality rate (1). C.
violaceum infection may begin with cellulitis Cellulitis Definition

Cellulitis is a spreading bacterial infection just below the skin surface. It is most commonly caused by
Streptococcus pyogenes or Staphylococcus aureus.  and skin abscesses (10,11), with rapid progression
to sepsis and multiple organ abscesses, predominantly in lungs, liver, and spleen (3-5). All previous case
reports were of individual, apparently sporadic infections. We report 1 confirmed and 2 suspected cases
of systemic C. violaceum infection in siblings who shared recreational exposure to stagnant water.

The Study

In May 2004, 3 cases of sepsis syndrome in children from the same family were reported to the State
Health Secretariat of Bahia in northeastern Brazil. The 3 patients had contact with soil and stagnant water
in a lake in a rural area of Ilheus municipality, during a day of recreational activity. The 3 brothers spent
several hours swimming in the lake with other children and adults, including their parents. Sixty persons
were in the group.

Fever, headache, and vomiting developed in patient 1, a previously healthy 14-year-old boy, 2 days after
he swam in the lake. He was examined at a local health service; amoxicillin amoxicillin /amox·i·cil·lin/ (ah-
mok?si-sil´in) a semisynthetic derivative of ampicillin effective against a broad spectrum of gram-positive
and gram-negative bacteria.

ra·di·o·graph n.  showed diffuse bilateral consolidation, and an abdominal ultrasound showed an enlarged
liver. Empiric  2.  antimicrobial treatment with oxacillin oxacillin /ox·a·cil·lin/ (ok?sah-sil´in) a semisynthetic
penicillinase-resistant penicillin used as the sodium salt in infections due to penicillin-resistant, gram-
positive organisms. , ampicillin ampicillin (ăm'pĭsĭl`ĭn), a penicillin-type antibiotic that is effective against
both gram-negative microorganisms and gram-positive microorganisms such as Escherichia coli. , and
ceftriaxone ceftriaxone /cef·tri·ax·one/ (cef?tri-ak´son) a semisynthetic, ß–resistant, third-generation
cephalosporin effective against a wide range of gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria, used as the
sodium salt.  was initiated. The patient was transferred to the intensive care unit and died of septic shock
36 hours after admission.

Autopsy showed enlargement of lungs, liver, and spleen with many abscessed areas of suppurative

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Aspirate
The removal by suction of a fluid from a body cavity using a needle.  culture yielded smooth purple
colonies on chocolate agar (Figure 1), identified as C. violaceum by the characteristic dark purple pigment
and biochemical profile. Antimicrobial drug susceptibility was determined by disk diffusion. The isolate was
resistant to cephalothin cephalothin

a first generation cephalosporin antibiotic. Sensitive organisms include many penicillin-resistant
staphylococci.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
cephalothin Cefalotin® Infectious disease A parenteral semisynthetic derivative of cephalosporin C, and 3
, ceftazidime, cefoxitin, and ceftriaxone and was sensitive to trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, amikacin,
gentamicin gentamicin /gen·ta·mi·cin/ (jen?tah-mi´sin) an aminoglycoside antibiotic complex isolated from
bacteria of the genus Micromonospora, , chloramphenicol chloramphenicol (klōr'ămfĕn`əkŏl'), antibiotic
effective against a wide range of gram-negative and gram-positive bacteria (see Gram's stain). It was
originally isolated from a species of Streptomyces bacteria. , ciprofloxacin, and meropenem.

[FIGURE 1 OMITTED]

Fever and right earache ear·ache
n.
Pain in the ear; otalgia.  developed in patient 2, a 12-year-old boy, 3 days after he swam in the lake. He
was examined at a local health clinic and sent home. After 2 days, he was admitted to a hospital with
purulent pu·ru·lent
adj.
Containing, discharging, or causing the production of pus.

purulent

containing or forming pus.  discharge in the right ear, fever, facial cellulitis, and diffuse abdominal pain.
Leukocyte count was 1,200 cells/[micro]L with 2% bands, 62% neutrophils, 31% lymphocytes, 1%
eosinophils, and 4% monocytes. Hemoglobin was 8.0 g/dL, with a platelet count of 158,000 cells/[micro]L.
Chest radiograph showed diffuse bilateral consolidation. Empiric treatment with cephalothin and amikacin
was initiated, but the patient's condition worsened quickly, and he died 6 hours after admission. No
cultures were obtained and autopsy was not performed; therefore, no samples were available for testing.
The patient was considered a suspected case-patient on the basis of signs and symptoms and
confirmation of the infection in his sibling.

Vomiting, abdominal pain, and fever developed in patient 3, a 9-year-old boy, 3 days after he swam in the
lake. Like his brothers, he was treated at a local health clinic and admitted to a hospital 3 days afterwards.
Leukocyte count was 20,500 cells/[micro]L with 4% bands and 82% neutrophils. Hemoglobin was 11.5
g/dL, AST was 115 U/L, and ALT was 26 U/L. Empiric treatment with ceftriaxone, ampicillin, and
metronidazole metronidazole /met·ro·ni·da·zole/ (-ni´dah-zol) an antiprotozoal and antibacterial effective
against obligate anaerobes; used as the base or the hydrochloride salt. It is also used as a topical
treatment for rosacea.  was initiated. After 48 hours, he was transferred to our institution, the Children's
Hospital in Salvador, Bahia. On admission, his abdomen was tender and his liver was enlarged; otherwise,
the results of the physical examination were normal. Treatment was changed to ceftazidime, oxacillin, and
amikacin. Serial blood cultures were negative for bacteria. A chest radiograph showed perihilar
consolidations in both lungs. A computed tomographic scan of the abdomen showed multiple, small liver
abscesses (Figure 2). Five days after admission, the fever continued in the patient, and cellulitis
developed on his left foot and right hand. Antimicrobial therapy was changed to oxacillin plus meropenem.
The patient became afebrile afebrile /afe·brile/ (a-feb´ril) without fever.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

a·feb·rile
adj.
Apyretic.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

afebrile

without fever.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
afebrile adjective Feverless  after 4 days of meropenem therapy, and symptoms and skin lesions
regressed. Studies to rule out underlying immunodeficiency showed no evidence of glucose 6-phosphate
dehydrogenase (G6PD G6PD glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

G6PD

glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase. ) deficiency or HIV HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus), either of
two closely related retroviruses that invade T-helper lymphocytes and are responsible for AIDS. There are
two types of HIV: HIV-1 and HIV-2. HIV-1 is responsible for the vast majority of AIDS in the United States.  
infection. The patient received parenteral antimicrobial drug therapy for 6 weeks and an additional 4
weeks of trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole was prescribed at discharge. He had no symptoms after 3 months
of follow-up care and was considered to be a suspected case-patient on the basis of his symptoms and
confirmation of the infection in his sibling. Results of the C. violaceum culture from case-patient 1 were
reported on day 6 of hospitalization.

[FIGURE 2 OMITTED]

For microbiologic analysis, samples of water and soil were collected from the lake where the boys had
swum swum  
v.
Past participle of swim.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
swum
Verb

the past participle of swim

swum swim . All 6 soil cultures and 4 of 6 water cultures grew C. violaceum. Soil and water samples
collected near the case-patients' home and neighbors' homes were negative.

Conclusions

In Brazil, C. violaceum is abundant in the water and on the borders of the Negro River in the Amazon basin
(12); however, this is >1,000 kilometers from the region where the cases occurred. C. violaceum infections
have been reported at least twice previously in Brazil. In 1984, the organism was cultured from skin
abscesses of a young man who had contact with river water in southern Brazil (8). In 2000, it was identified
from blood culture in a 30-year-old male farm worker who died of severe septicemia associated with
multiple lung and liver abscesses (9). Most reports worldwide have been associated with rural areas
(5,8,9) or stagnant water (6).

This report is the first of a cluster of suspected C. violaceum infections linked to a common source.
Systemic infection caused by C. violaceum is rare but severe and is associated with fatality rates [greater
than or equal to] 60% (1,13). Previous reports of C. violaceum sepsis have noted fever, hepatic
abscesses, and skin lesions, as observed in this cluster. Facial cellulitis and otitis, as observed in patient
2, have also previously been reported (10). Only our first case was microbiologically confirmed, but the
signs and symptoms and common epidemiologic exposure suggest that all 3 patients had C. violaceum
infection.

Based on the identification of C. violaceum in samples from the lake and onset of symptoms 2-3 days after
exposure, we believe that the 3 siblings were exposed while swimming and playing on the banks of the
lake. One previous report of 2 cases of C. violaceum pneumonia implicated aspiration of fresh water in
near-drowning victims (6); infection may also have occurred when injured or broken skin is exposed to
stagnant water. No cuts or gross abrasions on the skin of the siblings were reported, but microabrasions
may have occurred during the recreational activities.

Why these siblings, 3 of 60 persons exposed to the same environment, were the only ones in whom
severe illnesses developed is unclear. We hypothesized an underlying factor or familial predisposition to
infection. Previously, underlying defects in host defense, especially of neutrophils, have been
hypothesized to predispose to infection: cases have been reported in patients with chronic granulomatous
disease Chronic Granulomatous Disease Definition

Chronic granulomatous disease (CGD) is an inherited disorder in which white blood cells lose their ability
to destroy certain bacteria and fungi.  (13) and G6PD deficiency (14). However, many case reports
describe infections in apparently healthy persons (5). The 1 patient tested in this apparent cluster had no
detectable immunodeficiency, and his 2 siblings were apparently previously healthy.

Despite their cost, carbapenems may be an appropriate treatment when C. violaceum infection is
identified. The recommended antimicrobial treatment for C. violaceum infection is not well established;
some survivors are treated with ciprofloxacin, carbapenems, chloramphenicol with aminoglycoside
aminoglycoside /ami·no·gly·co·side/ (-gli´ko-sid) any of a group of antibacterial antibiotics (e.g.,
streptomycin, gentamicin) derived from various species of Streptomyces , or trimethoprim-
sulfamethoxazole. When patient 3 was seen in the late stage of infection, meropenem was prescribed
empirically for presumptive melioidosis Melioidosis Definition

Melioidosis is an infectious disease of humans and animals caused by a gram-negative bacillus found in
soil and water. It has both acute and chronic forms. , an infection with Burkholderia pseudomallei that may
begin similarly to cases in this cluster (15). Early recognition and aggressive antimicrobial drug therapy
can reduce the high mortality rate associated with both C. violaceum infection and melioidosis (1,4,15).
Physicians in tropical and subtropical regions should consider C. violaceum infection as part of the
differential diagnosis of sepsis, especially when associated with skin or multiple organ abscesses or with a
history of exposure to stagnant water.

Acknowledgments

We thank Brendan Flannery for valuable contributions to the article and Lorene Cardoso, Maria Saraiva,
and Angelica Brandao for technical assistance.

Dr Siqueira is an infectious disease specialist, assistant professor of pediatrics at Children's
Hospital/Obras Socias Irma Dulce, and professor of infectious diseases at the medical college of Federal
University of Bahia. Her primary research interest is tropical infectious diseases.

References

(1.) Steinberg JP, Del Rio C. Other gram-negative and gram-variable bacilli. In: Mandell GL, Bennett JE,
Dolin R, editors. Principles and practice of infectious diseases, 6th ed. Philadelphia: Churchill Livingstone;
2005. p. 2751-68.

(2.) Sneath PH, Whelan JP, Bhagwan SR, Edwards D. Fatal infection by Chromobacterium violaceum.
Lancet. 1953;265:276-7.

(3.) Shao PL, Hsueh PR, Hang YC, Lu CY, Lee PY, Lee CH, et al., Chromobacterium violaceum infection
in children: a case of fatal septicemia with nasopharyngealnasopharyngeal

pertaining to the nasal and pharyngeal cavities.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

nasopharyngeal meatus
see nasopharyngeal meatus.

nasopharyngeal spasm
see reverse sneeze.
..... Click the link for more information. abscess and literature review. Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2002;21:707-9.

(4.) Ti TY, Tan WC, Chong AP, Lee EH. Nonfatal and fatal infections caused by Chromobacterium
violaceum. Clin Infect Dis. 1993;17:505-7.

(5.) Moore CC, Lane JE, Stephens JL. Successful treatment of an infant with Chromobacterium violaceum
sepsis. Clin Infect Dis. 2001;32:E107-10.

(6.) Ponte R, Jenkins SG. Fatal Chromobacterium violaceum infections associated with exposure to
stagnant waters. Pediatr Infect Dis J. 1992; 11:583-6.

(7.) Kaufman SC, Ceraso D, Schugurensky A. First case report from Argentina of fatal septicemia caused
by Chromobacterium violaceum. J Clin Microbiol. 1986;23:956-8.
(8.) Petrillo VF, Severo V, Santos MM, Edelweiss EL. Recurrent infection with Chromobacterium
violaceum: first case report from South America. J Infect. 1984;9:167-9.

(9.) Martinez R, Velludo MA, Santos VR, Dinamarco PV. Chromobacterium violaceum infection in Brazil: a
case report. Rev Inst Med Trop Sao Paulo. 2000;42:111-3.

(10.) Chattopadhyay A, Kumar V, Bhat N, Rao P. Chromobacterium violaceum infection: a rare but
frequently fatal disease. J Pediatr Surg. 2002;37:108-10.

(11.) Simo F, Reuman PD, Martinez FJ, Ayoub EM. Chromobacterium violaceum as a cause of periorbital
cellulitis. Pediatr Infect Dis. 1984;3:561-3.

(12.) Brazilian National Genome Project Consortium. The complete genome sequence of
Chromobacterium violaceum reveals remarkable and exploitable bacterial adaptability. Proc Natl Acad Sci
U S A. 2003;100:11660-5.

(13.) Macher AM, Casale TB, Fauci AS. Chronic granulomatous disease of childhood and
Chromobacterium violaceum infections in the southeastern United States. Ann Intern Med. 1982;97:51-5.

(14.) Mamlok RJ, Mamlok V, Mills GC, Daeschner CW, Schmalstieg FC, Anderson DC. Glucose-6-
phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency Glucose-6-Phosphate Dehydrogenase Deficiency Definition

Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency is an inherited condition caused by a defect or defects in
the gene that codes for the enzyme, glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD). , neutrophil
dysfunction and Chromobacterium violaceum sepsis. J Pediatr. 1987; 111:852-4.

(15.) White NJ. Melioidosis. Lancet. 2003;361:1715-22.

Isadora Cristina de Siqueira, * ([dagger]) Juarez Dias, ([double dagger]) Hilda Ruf, ([double dagger])
Eduardo Antonio G. Ramos, ([dagger]) Elves Anderson Pires Maciel, ([dagger]) Ana Rolim, * Laura Jabur,
* Luciana Vasconcelos, * and Celia Silvany *

* Obras Sociais Irma Dulce, Salvador, Brazil; ([dagger]) Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, Salvador, Brazil; and
([double dagger]) Health Secretariat of the State of Bahia, Salvador, Brazil

Address for correspondence: Isadora Cristina de Siqueira, Centro de Pesquisas Goncalo Moniz-Fiocruz,
Rua Waldemar Falcao, 121 Brotas, Salvador, Bahia, Brazil, 40295-001; fax: 55-71-356-2155; email:
isiqueira@cpqgm.fiocruz.br
COPYRIGHT 2005 U.S. National Center for Infectious Diseases


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Chromobacterium violaceum
Abere Karibi-Ikiriko
http://web.mst.edu/~microbio/BIO221_2000/Chromobacterium_violaceum.html

The carcass of a three-year-old male Chinese Red panda (Ailurus fulgens styani) was submitted to the
veterinary diagnostic laboratory at North Dakota State University in November of 1998. One week
previously, the animal had been transported from a Florida zoo to the local zoological park. Clinical signs
during that week included listlessness, inappetance, and death on the morning of the seventh day. Gross
lesions included an interscapular, subcutaneous abscess; subcutaneous edema of the cervical region with
extension down the right arm; purulent inflammation of the right superficial cervical lymph node; severe,
bilateral, multifocal pulmonary abscesses; diffuse mottling of the liver and a single splenic abscess.
Microscopic lesions consisted of extensive, irregular foci of necrosis and suppurative inflammation in the
lung, liver, spleen, and superficial cervical lymph node. In the case of the lung, inflammation and necrosis
extended to and included the visceral pleura. Chromobacterium violaceum was isolated from cultures of
lung, liver, spleen, and a swab from the interscapular abscess. Suspensions of C. violaceum were
inoculated intraperitoneally in Swiss Webster mice. Eighteen hours post-inoculation the mice died and C.
violaceum was cultured from liver, lung, and spleen.

Chromobacterium violaceum are a species of bacteria that are Gram-negative, non-sporing, non-acid fast
small rods or coccobacilli. They are 0.6-0.9µm x 1.5-3.0µm in size and exhibit bipolar staining. Motility of C.
violaceum is achieved by means of a single polar flagellum and up to four antigenically and structurally
distinct lateral flagellae. They are considered as normal flora of soil and water in tropical to subtropical
areas where they may play a role in the rhizosphere. These bacteria are not present as part of the normal
flora of humans or animals.

C. violaceum are facultative anaerobes with a growth range from 15-40°C. Optimal growth is achieved at
30-35°C. They characteristically produce violet colonies on nutrient agar and usually grow on MacConkey
agar. Colonies grow easily on common culture media, which are suitable for the isolation of strains from
patient specimens. However, these are not the best media to isolate these organisms from soil or water
because they are present in only small numbers. Sterile rice grains and reduced strength nutrient agar
have been successfully used to isolate them from soil or water. Colonies are low convex, violet, smooth,
and not gelatinous. The pigment produced by most strains is violacein, which gives the colonies a
distinctive metallic, dark purple sheen.

C. violaceum are pathogenic and occasionally cause serious pyogenic or septicemic infections of
mammals, including man. Strains of virulent Chromobacterium produce an endotoxin, which is more
reactive than that from avirulent ones. Virulent strains are able to survive attack from phagocytic cells by
elevated levels of superoxide dismutase and catalase. Infections due to soil or water contamination with
the organisms can be quite varied, ranging from mild diarrhea to septicemia leading to a rapid death. Liver
and lung abscesses have been reported and similar infections in animals have been reported. The
veterinary literature documents infections in swine and Barbary sheep (pleuropneumonia) and gibbons,
Assam macaques, and dogs (septicemia). Human infections are reported from several continents,
particularly Australia, South America, and Southeast Asia where the typical disease presentation includes
cutaneous inflammation, sepsis, and liver abscesses. Ocular infections are documented in the more
recent literature. Human chromobacterial sepsis in the United States is reported primarily from Florida and
Louisiana. There are currently no vaccines.

The biochemistry of Chromobacterium violaceum includes acid production from glucose, trehalose, N-
acetylglucosamine and gluconate but not L-arabinose, D-galactose or D-maltose. They can produce
cyanide, utilize Lactate, hydrolyze Casein, decarboxylate arginine, reduce nitrate to nitrite and ferment
carbohydrates. They are oxidase-positive and catalase-positive. The GC content of the DNA is 65-68
mol% but there have not been many studies on the genetics of these organisms.

Chromobacterium violaceum could be used for the production of violacein, which has antibiotic
characteristics particularly against soil amoebae and trypanosomes. It can also be used to assay for L-
tryptophan. C. violaceum does not regulate any of its tryptophan genes transcriptionally. It uses the amino
acid tryptophan to synthesize the antibiotic violaceum.

Chromobacterium violaceum also produces other antibiotics:

Aerocyanidine is active against Gram-positive organisms.
Aerocavin is active against Gram-positive and Gram-negative organisms.
3,6-dihydroxyindoxazene and Factor Y-T0678H (6-hydroxy-3-oxo-1,2-benzisoxazolin) are both active
against Gram-negative bacteria.
A number of other important compounds are produced by C. violaceum including substances that
enhance the immune response, compounds that act synergistically with beta-lactam antibiotics.

It has been suggested that C. violaceum strains can be used for the extraction of gold from soil. As a
result of the production of cyanide, which reacts with the gold to form the complex anion [Au(CN)2]-, the
gold is solublised and easily extracted.

References:

Tucker RE; Winter WG Jr; Wilson HD. Osteomyelitis associated with Chromobacterium violaceum sepsis: A
case report. J Bone Joint Surg. [Am] 1979 Sep;61(6A):949-51   (ISSN: 0021-9355)
N.W. Dyer, DVM, MS. "Chromobacterium violaceum septicemia in a Chinese Red Panda." [online]
November 1998. < http://www.ndsu.nodak.edu/ndsu/veterinary_science/vetdiag/case.htm>
RIDOM. "Description of Chromobacterium violaceum." [online] 2 January 1999. < http://www.ridom.hygiene.
uni-wuerzburg.de/ridom/tmp/d8h/speciesDescription.html>
RIDOM. "Chocolate blood agar after 48 hours of incubation at 26 0C" [online image] 2 January 1999.
<http://www.ridom.hygiene.uni-wuerzburg.de/ridom/tmp/d8h/speciesDescription.html>
RIDOM. "Gram Stain" [online image] 2 January 1999. <http://www.ridom.hygiene.uni-wuerzburg.
de/ridom/tmp/d8h/speciesDescription.html


*Disclaimer - This report was written by a student participaring in a microbiology course at the Missouri
University of Science and Technology. The accuracy of the contents of this report is not guaranteed and it
is recommended that you seek additional sources of information to verify the contents.