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Streptococcus pneumoniae. Scanning Electron Micrograph (SEM) of clusters of the bacteria Streptococcus pneumoniae. These gram-positive bacteria are spherical in shape (cocci) and non-motile. As seen here they usually form pairs, short chains or clusters. These bacteria secrete a capsule which is associated with certain pathogenic states. Streptococcus pneumoniae occurs both as a healthy and harmless commensal organism and as a pathogen in the human respiratory tract. When pathogenic, it is a cause of pneumonia, pleurisy, peritonitis and meningitis. Treatment is with antibiotic drugs such as penicillin. Magnification: x8500 at 6x6cm size.
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