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Imaging Bacterial Shape, Surface, and Appendages Before and After Treatments With Antibiotics

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Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology™ book series (MIMB,volume 242)


Bacteria are typically smaller than eukaryotic cells. The average diameter of Staphylococcus aureus is 1±0.5 μm, whereas Escherichia coli is on average 0.5×1.5 μm. The bacterial cell is also characterized by the presence of a complex external rigid structure called cell wall, which protects the internal protoplast and gives also the cellular shape, that generally falls into one of the, three basic morphologic categories, spherical (cocci), rod-shaped (bacilli), and spiral. Some bacteria show an atypical bacterial shape.


  • Scanning Force Microscope
  • Basic Morphologic Category
  • Bacterial Surface Structure
  • Reflection Optical Microscope
  • Scanner Coordinate System

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© 2004 Humana Press Inc., Totowa, NJ

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Braga, P.C., Ricci, D. (2004). Imaging Bacterial Shape, Surface, and Appendages Before and After Treatments With Antibiotics. In: Braga, P.C., Ricci, D. (eds) Atomic Force Microscopy. Methods in Molecular Biology™, vol 242. Humana Press.

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