Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of Vancomycin resistant (VRE) Enterococcus faecalis. Enterococcus (formerly Streptococcus) is a Gram-positive, facultative anaerobic, coccoid prokaryote (bacterium) that is normal part of the intestinal flora (commensal) of humans and animals. Enterococcus species are important pathogens responsible for serious infections. They can be opportunistic pathogens and may cause various types of infections when the immune system is impaired. They are important nosocomial (hospital-acquired) pathogens. Infectious strains of Enterococcus that are resistant to vancomycin have emerged in nosocomial infections. Enterococci have both an intrinsic and acquired resistance to antibiotics. Enterococcus faecalis and Enterococcus faecium are the most prevalent species cultured from humans, accounting for more than 90% of clinical isolates. Magnification: x18,665 when shortest axis printed at 25 millimetres.
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