Enterobacter aerogenes, part of the Enterobacteriaceae Family, is a rod-shaped bacteria that causes bacterial infections, and is usually acquired in a hospital or hospital-type atmospheres. It usually causes opportunistic infections, meaning that it will usually only cause a disease in a person or host that has a compromised immune system. Studies are now showing it causing increased alarm in community infections. It rarely is known to cause a disease in someone with a healthy immune system.
Even though they can be extremely sensitive to antibiotics, these bacteria easily become unaffected by typical antibiotics due to their significant ability to become resistant through their adaptive capabilities. These become “drug resistant bacteria” or “superbugs.”
Enterobacter aerogenes are small, white in color, and have flagella surrounding it making it motile. It is Gram-negative and anaerobic. They are seen throughout nature, including fresh water, sewage plants, and vegetables. Although it normally prefers and multiplies quickly in places with a small amount or no oxygen, it can grow and live in oxygen-abundant areas. It is related to Enterobacter Coli and Salmonella. Its preferred temperature for growth is 37 degrees Celsius. In laboratories, it also grows quite quickly in milk nutrients, salts, and dyes.
Surgical procedures, intravenous catheter insertions, and some antibiotic treatments are ways that result in the infection of Enterobacter aerogenes. The gastrointestinal tract is usually where it is found in a human, and it is known to cause respiratory, urinary tract infections, osteomyelitis, and septic arthritis. They also cause burn, wound, and bloodstream infections. It has also been shown to cause meningitis and central nervous system infections.