Vibrio cholerae and Cholera: Molecular to Global Perspectives

Edited by I. K. Wachsmuth, Paul A. Blake and Orjan Olsvik. American Society of Microbiologists Press, Washington, D. C. 465 pages. $72.00. 1994

Richard L. GuerrantSchool of Medicine, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia 22908

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Nathan M. ThielmanSchool of Medicine, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia 22908

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Vibrio cholerae and Cholera: Molecular to Global Perspectives, edited by Wachsmuth, Blake and Olsvik, provides an extensive, multiauthored textbook of cholera, its bacteriology, pathophysiology, epidemiology and molecular biology that has been made disturbingly timely by the spread of the seventh pandemic throughout Latin America since 1991, the emergence of the new 8th pandemic of O139 epidemic cholera in Asia since last year and the rampant epidemic among Rwandan refugees this summer. Mitchell Cohen opens with introducing the firing of cannons as described by Gabriel Garcia Marquez every 15 minutes to “purify the atmosphere” when the cholera proclamation was issued at the end of the 19th century. The comprehensive description of progress since then provides sometimes difficult, but important, epidemiologic and molecular details which fuel current efforts at controlling what appear to be increasing problems with cholera in the 1990s.

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