Proteus bacilli – Dr. Tanmay Mehta Tribe Proteeae :  Proteus  Morganella  Providencia Common characteristics : 1.

Proteus = Pleomorphism (Greek God Proteus who could assume any shape) 2. Gram negative – Noncapsulated – Pleomorphic – Motile Bacilli (peritrichous flagella) 3. Lactose (Dulcitol /Malonate) Nonfermenter : Not strictly belong to coliform bacilli 4. Urease Positive (except Providencia) : hydrolyse urea to ammonia and CO2 5. Characteristic feature differentiating Proteeae from other enterobacteria : PPA Positive : Phenyl alanine deaminase – coverts phenyl alanine to phenyl Pyruvic acid 6. Resistant to KCN 7. Degrade Tyrosine 8. Do not form arginine/lysine decarboxylase or Beta galactosidase 9. IMViC : V / + / - / + (Pr. Mirabilis is indole negative – rest all are indole positive/ morganella is citrate negative)  Genus : Proteus :  Normal intestinal commensal & opportunistic pathogens like coliforms 1. Pr. Mirabilis – urinary & nosocomial pathogen (indole negative) 2. Pr.vulgaris – less common in human infection (indole positive)  Culture on Nutrient agar :  Facultative anaerobic  Characteristic fishy/seminal putrefying odor – with Swarming  Discrete colonies in young culture  actively motile cells spread on surface of plate in successive waves  form thin filmy layer in concentric circles  Disadvantage of swarming : it is a problem when mixed growth is obtained in which proteus is contaminant  Methods to inhibit swarming (in mixed growth) : 1. Increase concentration of agar to 6% 2. Chlor hydrate (1:500) 3. Sodium azide (1:500) 4. Alcohol 6% 5. Sulfonamides 6. Surface active agents 7. Boric acid (1:1000)  Swarming does Not occur on : MacConkey Agar (smooth colonies are found) : Lactose nonfermenter  Oxidase negative – catalase positive  IMViC : +(vulgaris) – (mirabilis) /+/-/+  PPA & Urease positive Genus : Morgenella  M morganii (Pr.morganii) – found in feces – infrequent UTInosocomial wound infection : Not swarm on culture  PPA positive  IMViC : + / + / - / - (citrate neagative)  Urease positive

Weil & Felix : Strains of proteus on agar  Form a surface film resembling mist produced by breathing on glass – named Hauch (= film of breath) : Flagellar H strains  Colonies without a surface film – Ohne Hauch (without film of breath) : only somatic O antigens Bacterial agglutination  H type : loose fluffy masses (due to flagellated cells agglutination)  O type : fine granular (due to somatic agglutination) Nonmotile strains of pr.vulgaris = X strains (OX2 , OX19 , OXk) – share carbohydrate haptens with rickettsia : basis of heterophile agglutination Weil felix reaction for diagnosis of ricketssial infection

Genus : Providencia  Prov. Alcalifaciens : in normal feces & diarrheal stools  Prov. Stuartii : UTI – Burn infection  Prov. Rettgerii : nosocomial infection of Urinary tract – wounds – burns – blood  PPA positive  IMViC : + / + / - /+ (citrate positive)  Urease negative\

Antibiotics  proteus bacilli ate resistant to many antibiotics : Providencia is most resistant – Prov.Stuartii also resistant to disinfectants [chlorhexidine , cetrimide , benzalkonium chloride ]& heavy metal compounds like silver sulfadiazine (major pathogen in burns)  Exception : Pr.mirabilis – sensitive to ampicillinand cephalosporins  Sensitive to : Phenol & glutarldehyde - Amikacin & Ciprofloxacin

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