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By C. H. Werkman and P. W. Wilson (Eds.)

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CHAPTER II THE STRUCTURE OF THE BACTERIAL CELL BY GEORGES KNAYSI CONTENTS I. Cell Structure A. Living Matter B. Cell and Protoplasm C. Cytoplasm and Cytoplasmic Membrane D. The Nucleus E. Cytoplasmic Inclusions 1. Cell-Sap Vacuoles 2. Volutin Inclusions 3. Lipoid Inclusions 4. Carbohydrate Inclusions 5. Sulfur Inclusions 6. Calcium Carbonate Inclusions 7. Physiological Significance of Inclusions F. The Cell Wall G. The Slime Layer H. Flagella and the Motion of Bacteria II. The Spores of Bacteria A.

16). It was stated by Meyer (1912) that the fat inclusions of Bacillus tumescens and related species are soluble in glacial acetic acid and in chloral hydrate. More recently, solubility of the presporal inclusions in acetone was claimed. Such data must be taken with caution because these solvents have a higher refractive index than that of the inclusions. When the cell smear is covered with any one of these solvents, the inclusions appear as if they had been dissolved away and left an optically empty vacuole ; if now the solvent is removed and the smear mounted in water, the inclusions reappear although, frequently, in a different loca­ tion; the translocation may often be such that the inclusions may occupy a peripheral position and be seen, with difficulty, adhering to the inner surface of the cytoplasmic membrane.

In other organisms which produce by-products of metabolism only slightly soluble in water, some of these products gradu­ ally diffuse into the vacuole and increase its réfringence sometimes to the point of rendering it indistinguishable from extravacuolar particles of the same material; utilization of this material by the starving cells in old cultures finally reduces the content of the vacuole to its original state of dilute aqueous solution. In the case of Escherichia coli in a medium containing MgS04, the vacuoles do not seem to increase in density, but become gradually larger as the culture develops until they THE STRUCTURE OF THE BACTERIAL CELL 39 interfere with cell multiplication and, ultimately, cause bursting of the cell.

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