Ultrastructure of gliding bacteria: Scanning electron microscopy of Capnocytophaga sputigena, Capnocytophaga gingivalis, and Capnocytophaga ochracea

T. P. Poirier, S. J. Tonelli, S. C. Holt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations

Abstract

When examined by both light and scanning electron microscopy, Capnocytophaga gingivalis, C. sputigena, and C. ochracea displayed 3 distinct growth zones: the original streak, an intermediate zone, and the advancing edge, or halo zone. On Trypticase (BBL Microbiology Systems)-soy-blood agar, the cells translocated by gliding. C. gingivalis and C. sputigena formed large, irregular isolated colonies, while C. ochracea formed a more confluent cell mass. The cells within the streak zone and in most of the intermediate zone were heaped into mounds, with the individual cells displaying a definite flow pattern, the latter characteristic of C. sputigena and C. gingivalis. The halo zone consisted of tracks of cells which appeared to have translocated back upon themselves, or were restricted in their outward movement by adjacent cells. Also present within the halo zone were small agregates of cells, referred to as pioneer colonies. The cell surfaces of C. gingivalis and C. ochracea were smooth and free of any apparent extracellular material, whereas C. sputigena was covered with a thick amorphous material, as well as long, cell surface-associated fibrils.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1146-1158
Number of pages13
JournalInfection and immunity
Volume26
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 1979
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases

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