By R. W. Fairbrother (Auth.)
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Additional resources for A Text-Book of Medical Bacteriology
This extract is kept in a large flask until required. Commercial meat extracts, such as Liebig's beef extract, may be used instead of fresh meat, but the results are generally not so satisfactory. The meat extract alone is not suitable for the growth of bacteria. Although it contains mineral salts and extractives it is lacking in nitrogenous material, as the meat proteins are coagulated by the boiling process and removed by the subsequent THE CULTIVATION 35 OF BACTERIA filtration. Digested and uncoagulable protein is therefore added in the form of a commercial peptone, which contains peptone and albumoses.
The introduction of a solid medium by Koch was a step of the greatest importance in the isolation of pure cultures and remarkable advances have since been made. Nevertheless, the value of fluid media in bacteriology has never been doubted and they are now used extensively in the study of pure cultures. The food requirements of the bacteria have already been discussed, and it has been noted that the following elements are necessary for the synthesis of the bacterial protoplasm : carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, hydrogen, in addition to a number of mineral salts.
As a result energy is provided and simple substances, which can be assimilated by the organisms, are produced. In relatively few instances the opposite process occurs, t h a t of building-up or synthesis. This activity is an important property of the soil bacteria, which are able to fix and utilize the atmospheric nitrogen. The process of fermentation was considered to be purely chemical until the ingenious and conclusive experiments of THE BIOLOGY OF BACTERIA 29 Pasteur, whereby the rôle played by the bacteria was decisively demonstrated.
A Text-Book of Medical Bacteriology by R. W. Fairbrother (Auth.)