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Bacteria from severaf genera, including Campylobacter, Salmonelle, and Yersinia, as well as some strains of the common intestinal bacillus Escherichia coli, can invade the mucosa of the large intestine and cause dysentery, but members of the genus Shigella are by far the most important agents. Shigellosis is a common disease that occurs worldwide and afflicts persons of all races and age groups. In addition, Campylobacter appears to be an emerging pathogen, at least in the United States. It lives in the small intestine and produces a dysentery-like condition that is usually self-limiting.

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