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Appl Microbiol. 1970 March; 19(3): 458–462.
PMCID: PMC376712

Unusual Sphaerophorus Species from the Large Intestine of Man


An obligately anaerobic, gram-negative microorganism identified as a Sphaerophorus species was recovered from the fecal material of two cancer (chronic myelogenous leukemia and idiopathic thrombocythemia) patients receiving cobalt radiation therapy. The organism, isolated on sheep blood-agar, exhibited extreme pleomorphism (rods, filaments, and spheroids) and was a major component of the anaerobic fecal microflora. In one patient the numbers of Sphaerophorus species (designated as isolate 6-13-68), Bacteroides species, and Clostridium perfringens declined after irradiation; however, they were stable in this same patient after a second therapeutic dose of radiation. The numbers of anaerobes in the other patient remained fairly consistent after radiation. The biochemical and morphological characteristics and carbohydrate fermentation reactions of isolate 6-13-68 most closely resembled those of Sphaerophorus ridiculosis.

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Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Drasar BS. Cultivation of anaerobic intestinal bacteria. J Pathol Bacteriol. 1967 Oct;94(2):417–427. [PubMed]
  • Eggerth AH, Gagnon BH. The Bacteroides of Human Feces. J Bacteriol. 1933 Apr;25(4):389–413. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Lewis KH, Rettger LF. Non-Sporulating Anaerobic Bacteria of the Intestinal Tract : I. Occurrence and Taxonomic Relationships. J Bacteriol. 1940 Aug;40(2):287–307. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Zubrzycki L, Spaulding EH. STUDIES ON THE STABILITY OF THE NORMAL HUMAN FECAL FLORA. J Bacteriol. 1962 May;83(5):968–974. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

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