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Electron Microscopic Examination of Corynebacterium ovis

By G. C. Hard


Corynebacterium ovis (C. pseudotuberculosis) was examined by electron microscopy after being subjected to various methods of fixation. The organism exhibited a fine structure similar to other corynebacterial species in the appearance of its cell wall, plasma membrane, nuclear apparatus, cytoplasmic matrix, wealth and complexity of intracytoplasmic membrane systems, and polyphosphate granules. An outstanding structural feature was the existence of an electron-dense, floccular layer external to the cell wall which both ligroin and acetone-methanol extractions demonstrated to be the previously postulated surface lipid of this organism. The only variations in structure evident between virulent and attenuated strains was a quantitative difference in the thickness and appearance of the surface lipid. The observation of this layer provided a basis for explaining the surface properties of C. ovis, with particular respect to its clumping capacity in suspension, the waxiness of its growth on solid media, and its ability to grow as a pellicle on suitable liquid media. The variation in the visible amount of surface lipid between the virulent and avirulent strains adequately explained the divergence of these three surface properties between the strains

Topics: Taxonomy, Ecology, and Morphology and Structure
Year: 1969
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Provided by: PubMed Central
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