Publications & Reports

The Spectrum of Chromobacterium violaceum Infections from a Single Geographic Location.

Lin YD, Majumdar SS, Hennessy J, Baird RW
Department of Microbiology, Territory Pathology, Royal Darwin Hospital, Darwin, Australia; Burnet Institute, Victoria, Australia [email protected]


Chromobacterium violaceum is a bacterium associated with soil and water exposure in tropical regions and causes rare and serious clinical infections that are often fatal. We reviewed the demographic and clinical details of 28 patients with C. violaceum detected over 15 years from 2000 to 2015, from the Top End of the Northern Territory. Of these patients, 18 had infections attributable to C. violaceum. Patients with infections were more commonly male (55.6%), and in the 16- to 60-year (61.1%) age group. Skin and soft tissue infections (50%), predominantly involving the limbs, were the major clinical manifestation. Water, mud exposure, and trauma were all noted as precipitating circumstances and comorbidities were present in 61.1% of the patients with infections. Of the 28 patients, 10 (35.8%) had C. violaceum isolated as an incidental finding or as asymptomatic colonization; these 10 patients did not require or receive therapy for C. violaceum bacterial infections. There were no relapsing infections in this group. Chromobacterium violaceum remains a serious infection, with seven patients (25%) in our series requiring intensive care management. However, the mortality rate (7.1%) in our series was far lower than previously described. This case series of C. violaceum infections from a single geographic area provides additional information of the characteristics of infection with this pathogen.


  • Journal: The American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
  • Published: 22/02/2016
  • Volume: 94
  • Issue: 4
  • Pagination: 710-716