DAVID SCHARF / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DAVID SCHARF / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
False-colour scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of Staphylococcus epidermidis a Gram-positive non- motile spherical bacterium commonly found on the skin & in the upper respiratory tract. It is normally commensal (neither harmful nor beneficial) or at most a low-grade pathogen. Recently it has been implicated in infections occurring in association with intravenous lines, catheters, artificial heart valves, implants & other prostheses. S. epidermis can also cause endocarditis (inflammation of the lining of the heart cavity and valves) in hearts with damaged valves or even in previously normal hearts. Magnification: x16,500 at 6x6cm size.
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