Query: NC_020064:521500 Serratia marcescens FGI94, complete genome Lineage: Serratia marcescens; Serratia; Enterobacteriaceae; Enterobacteriales; Proteobacteria; Bacteria General Information: This organism was discovered in 1819 by Bizio who named the organism after the Italian physicist Serrati. It was considered a nonpathogenic organism until late in the 20th century, although pathogenicity was noted as early as 1913. Serratia marcescens is an opportunistic human pathogen that is increasingly associated with life-threatening hospital-acquired infections. It is an environmental organism that has a broad host range, and is capable of infecting vertebrates and invertebrates, as well as plants. In humans, Serratia marcescens can cause meningitis (inflammation of the membrane surrounding the brain and spinal cord), endocarditis (inflammation of heart muscle) and pyelonephritis (inflammation of the kidneys). Many strains are resistant to multiple antibiotics. Environmental isolates are noted by production of the red pigment prodigiosin.
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General Information: This strain (HS; serotype O9) is a human commensal that was originally isolated from a laboratory scientist at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research in 1978 (Levine, 1978). Strain HS colonizes the human gastrointestinal tract in challenge experiments, but no overt signs of disease occur. Thus, this strain represents a genomic baseline for human gastrointestinal tract colonization. This organism was named for its discoverer, Theodore Escherich, and is one of the premier model organisms used in the study of bacterial genetics, physiology, and biochemistry. This enteric organism is typically present in the lower intestine of humans, where it is the dominant facultative anaerobe present, but it is only one minor constituent of the complete intestinal microflora. E. coli, is capable of causing various diseases in its host, especially when they acquire virulence traits. E. coli can cause urinary tract infections, neonatal meningitis, and many different intestinal diseases, usually by attaching to the host cell and introducing toxins that disrupt normal cellular processes.