- Gram-positive, beta-hemolytic, rod-shaped bacterium
- Known for causing foodborne illness in humans, though some strains are probiotic
- Classically associated with "fried rice syndrome"
- The emetic form is commonly caused by rice cooked for a time and temperature insufficient to kill any spores present, then improperly refrigerated. It can produce a toxin which is not inactivated by later reheating. This form leads to nausea and vomiting one to five hours after consumption. It can be difficult to distinguish from other short-term bacterial foodborne intoxications such as by Staphylococcus aureus.
- Bacillus foodborne illnesses occur due to survival of endospores when food is improperly cooked. Bacterial growth results in production of enterotoxins, one of which is heat- and acid-stable (pH 2 to 11); ingestion leads to two types of illness: diarrheal and emetic.
- 8-16 hour incubation time
Most emetic patients recover within six to 24 hours but in some cases, the toxin can be fatal.
- ↑ Kotiranta A, Lounatmaa K, Haapasalo M (2000). "Epidemiology and pathogenesis of Bacillus cereus infections". Microbes Infect 2 (2): 189–98. doi:10.1016/S1286-4579(00)00269-0. PMID 10742691.
- ↑ Takabe F, Oya M (1976). "An autopsy case of food poisoning associated with Bacillus cereus". ForensicSci 7 (2): 97–101.