Human Bacterial Diseases from Ocean

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date



Coastal Sciences, Gulf Coast Research Laboratory


Ocean Science and Engineering


Several bacteria that cause human disease can be found in the ocean. The actual incidence of bacterial disease that results from seawater or seafood is not precisely known but is thought to be relatively low in the USA, although some diseases are on the rise. Bacterial disease from the ocean is more prevalent worldwide, especially in developing countries and in countries that derive most of their protein from seafood. Compared to the viruses, bacteria account for a much lower incidence of disease emanating from the ocean, both in the USA and worldwide. However, it is important to understand and mitigate bacterial disease from the ocean, because of such environmental pressures as global warming, antibiotic resistance, pollution, breakdowns in sanitation (e.g., Haiti after the earthquake) and tourism.

Publication Title

Infectious Diseases

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