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The coccoid forms of Helicobacter pylori. Criteria for their viability

  • G. Bode (a1), F. Mauch (a1) and P. Malfertheiner (a1)

Summary

The fact that Helicobacter pylori can revert to a coccoid form has stimulated speculation about its role in transmission and as a possible cause of reinfection in duodenal ulcer disease. Bismuth subcitrate (32 μg/ml), bismuth subsalicylate (64 μg/ml), amoxicillin (0·05 μg/ml) and erythromycin (4 μg/ml) inhibited the growth of H. pylori and stimulated the formation the formation of basically respiring but non-culturable coccoid structures. The presence of polyphosphates as energy and phosphorus source permits a certain level of endogenous metabolism to preserve RNA and DNA, as well as structural components like cell wall, cell membrane and cytoplasma for at least 3 months. However, the applied standard laboratory methods were insufficient for regrowth of H. pylori out of the coccoid form.

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References

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