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Micrococcus luteus

M luteus.jpg
Under a high magnification of 21930x, this scanning electron micrograph (SEM) depicted some of the ultrastructural morphologic features displayed by this group of Gram-positive Micrococcus luteus bacteria. The specimen was obtained from a pure culture that was raised on a polycarbonate filter, for the purpose of identification of the organism.

Being Gram-positive, these organisms appear blue to violet when stained using a Gram-stain technique. M. luteus is an aerobe, which means that it thrives in an oxygen rich environment, and is normally found living in the human mouth, mucosal linings of the upper pharynx, and respiratory tract. Those who may be immunocompromised such a AIDS patients, or those on chemotherapy, need to be concerned about these bacteria, however, these organisms are usually considered non-pathogenic.

Photo Credit: Janice Carr, CDC
Content Credit: CDC/ Betsy Crane

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