Bacterial Colony Morphology Identification Quiz

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6 Questions

Which bacterium is characterized by a 'Star-shaped' colony morphology?

Yersinia pestis

Which bacterium forms 'Poached egg' colonies?

Corynebacterium diphtheriae

Which bacterium has 'Bread crumb' colonies with a pointed/tapered end?

Fusobacterium nucleatum

Which bacterium is associated with 'Dew drop' colonies and Satellitism?

Haemophilus influenzae

Which bacterium demonstrates a 'Umbrella-shaped' colony pattern?

Listeria monocytogenes

Which bacterium exhibits 'Cauliflower-like' colonies?

Mycobacterium tuberculosis

Study Notes

Bacterial Colony Morphology

  • Actinomyces israelii: Characterized by a branching or beading appearance
  • Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans: Forms star-shaped colonies
  • Bacillus anthracis: Colonies have a box-car or medusa head appearance
  • Bordetella spp.: Colonies resemble mercury droplets
  • Chromobacterium violaceum: Produces dark, smooth purple colonies on blood agar
  • Corynebacterium diphtheriae: Colonies have a poached egg appearance, with club-shaped cells and a palisade arrangement, resembling a "picket fence" or "Chinese letters"
  • Eikenella corrodens: Causes pitting of agar
  • Enterobacter spp.: Colonies appear pink with a dark center on EMB agar, forming a "fish eye" pattern
  • Fusobacterium nucleatum: Colonies have a bread crumb appearance with pointed or tapered ends
  • Haemophilus ducreyi: Colonies have a "school of fish" appearance
  • Haemophilus influenzae: Colonies appear as dew drops with satellitism
  • Listeria monocytogenes: Colonies exhibit an "umbrella-shaped" pattern
  • Moraxella catarrhalis: Colonies resemble hockey pucks
  • Mycoplasma spp.: Colonies have a fried egg appearance
  • Mycobacterium bovis: Colonies appear as water droplets
  • Mycobacterium tuberculosis: Colonies have a cauliflower-like appearance
  • Mycobacterium xenopi: Colonies resemble a bird's nest
  • Mycobacterium ulcerans/leprae: Colonies exhibit a cigar pocket arrangement
  • Streptobacillus moniliformis: Colonies have a puff or fluff ball appearance
  • Streptococcus pneumoniae: Colonies are dome-shaped
  • Yersinia enterocolitica: Colonies have a bull's eye appearance
  • Yersinia pestis: Colonies have a safety pin appearance and exhibit stalactite growth on broth

Test your knowledge on identifying bacterial species based on their unique colony morphology characteristics. From branching appearance to star-shaped colonies, challenge yourself to match the bacteria with their distinctive features.

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