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Volume 15, Number 3—March 2009
Etymologia

Shigella
[shĭ-gel′ə]

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Genus of gram-negative bacteria in the family Enterobacteriaceae, named for Japanese bacteriologist Koyoshi Shiga (1871–1957). In 1897, Japan experienced a severe dysentery epidemic; >91,000 cases were reported, and the case-fatality rate was >20%. Dr Shiga isolated the etiologic agent from patient stool samples: a bacillus, later called Shigella dysenteriae. He went on to describe the toxins that the organism produces; one that causes serious complications during infections is now known as Shiga toxin.

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Cite This Article

DOI: 10.3201/eid1503.e11503

Sources: Trofa AF, Ueno-Olsen H, Oiwa R, Yoshikawa M. Dr. Kiyoshi Shiga: discoverer of the dysentery bacillus. Clin Infect Dis. 1999;29:1303–6; Dorland’s illustrated medical dictionary, 31st edition. Philadelphia: Saunders; 2007.

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Table of Contents – Volume 15, Number 3—March 2009

Page created: December 07, 2010
Page updated: December 07, 2010
Page reviewed: December 07, 2010
The conclusions, findings, and opinions expressed by authors contributing to this journal do not necessarily reflect the official position of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Public Health Service, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or the authors' affiliated institutions. Use of trade names is for identification only and does not imply endorsement by any of the groups named above.
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