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I created this blog as an instrument of what I have encountered in the world of veterinary medicine as a proud vet student. Comments and suggestions are welcome here at;


Aina Meducci 2012


The following blog posts is not genuinely from my research but through readings and citation from trusted website. I do not own any of the copyright and therefore you may use it at your own risk


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Today Dr Mokhtar knocked the day! How to isolate mycoplasma from the infected animals?

Ps: Clinical Microbiology is awesome!!


What is Mycoplasma??

Mycoplasma colony

Colonies of Mycoplasma exhibit a distinctive "fried egg" morphology (see image) when viewed under a plate microscope.

Mycoplasma refers to a genus of bacteria that lack a cell wall.Without a cell wall, they are unaffected by many common antibiotics such as penicillin or other beta-lactam antibiotics that target cell wall synthesis. They can be parasitic or saprotrophic. Several species are pathogenic in humans, including M. pneumoniae, which is an important cause of atypical pneumonia and other respiratory disorders, and M. genitalium, which is believed to be involved in pelvic inflammatory diseases.

Mycoplasma also may invade animals,

  • Mycoplasma amphoriforme, a new species isolated at Mycoplasma Experience (Pitcher etal, 2005, IJ SEM 55p. 2589-2594)
  • Ureaplasma isolated from a joint - microscopic and macroscopic appearance.
  • M. meleagridis on avian medium
  • M. bovis diagnostic medium, microscopic and macroscopic appearance.
  • M. agalactiae diagnostic medium, microscopic and macroscopic appearance.
  • M. mycoides subsp. mycoides (SC) diagnostic medium, microscopic and macroscopic appearance.
  • M. capricolum subsp. capripneumoniae diagnostic medium, microscopic and macroscopic appearance.
  • A. laidlawii membrane detection medium, microscopic and macroscopic appearance.

Mycoplasma species are the smallest free-living organisms. These organisms are unique among prokaryotes in that they lack a cell wall, a feature largely responsible for their biologic properties such as their lack of a reaction to Gram stain and their lack of susceptibility to many commonly prescribed antimicrobial agents, including beta-lactams. Mycoplasmal organisms are usually associated with mucosal surfaces, residing extracellularly in the respiratory and urogenital tracts. They rarely penetrate the submucosa, except in the case of immunosuppression or instrumentation, when they may invade the bloodstream and disseminate to different organs and tissues throughout the body.

Mycoplasma is spread through contact with droplets from the nose and throat of infected animal when they cough and sneeze. Transmission is thought to require prolonged close contact with an infected animals. Spread in families, schools and institutions occurs slowly. The contagious period is probably fewer than 10 days and occasionally longer.

Clinical signs

Typical symptoms can develop and persist over weeks to months and include flulike manifestations.


  • Generalized aches and pains
  • Fever (usually ≤ 102°F)
  • Cough - Usually nonproductive
  • Sore throat (nonexudative pharyngitis)
  • Headache/myalgiasChills but not rigors
  • Nasal congestion with coryza
  • Earache
  • General malaise (tiredness)

Mycoplasmosis signs can also resembles the following diseases (diffential diagnosis)

  • Adenoviruses
  • Bacterial Pharyngitis
  • Bacterial Pneumonia
  • Chlamydial Pneumonias
  • Cytomegalovirus
  • Haemophilus
  • Influenzae Infections
  • Histoplasmosis
  • Infectious Mononucleosis
  • Influenza
  • Legionnaires Disease
  • Moraxella
  • Catarrhalis Infections
  • Parainfluenza Virus
  • Pneumococcal Infections
  • Psittacosis
  • Q fever

Mycoplasma species are often found in research laboratories as contaminants in cell culture. Mycoplasmal cell culture contamination occurs due to contamination from individuals or contaminated cell culture medium ingredients. Mycoplasma cells are physically small – less than 1 ┬Ám – and they are therefore difficult to detect with a conventional microscope. Mycoplasmas may induce cellular changes, including chromosome aberrations, changes in metabolism and cell growth. Severe Mycoplasma infections may destroy a cell line.

Detection techniques include DNA Probe, enzyme immunoassays, PCR, plating on sensitive agar and staining with a DNA stain including DAPI or Hoechst.

Acute foamy airsacculitis due to Mycoplasma gallisepticum infection

Acute foamy airsacculitis due to Mycoplasma gallisepticum infection in chicken

Mycoplasma hyosynoviae in pigs


Antibiotics such as erythromycin or tetracycline are effective treatments. However, because mycoplasma infection usually resolves on its own, antibiotic treatment of mild symptoms is not essential.

Mycoplasma isolation

Often regarded as the gold standard method for Mycoplasma detection, the culture isolation detection method uses a combination of selective growth media and incubation conditions to positively enrich for any Mycoplasma present in a sample. Most Mycoplasma contaminants can be detected by growth on standardised agar, with the exception of certain strains of M.hyorhinis.

**Immunity after mycoplasma infection does occur, but is not life-long. Second infections are known to occur, although they may be milder. The duration of immunity is unknown.

Sources: Mycoplasma detection methods; health protection agency, Walking pneumonia; Dr Earl H.Dyemycoplasma infection emedicine medscape, Mycoplasma, wikipedia, Mycoplasma;microbe wiki, Mycoplasma isolation from clinical and vet sample.

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Ahmad Azamin said...

hurmmm.....baru je bljr bacti.....

Aina Meducci said...

Azamin: Mycoplasma is not a bacteria (because it does not have cell wall) but this is an organism occasionally invade respiratory system and may aid to secondary bacterial infection :)

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