Demonstration of polysaccharide capsule in Campylobacter jejuni using electron microscopy

Infect Immun. 2001 Sep;69(9):5921-4. doi: 10.1128/IAI.69.9.5921-5924.2001.


Recently, we reported that Campylobacter jejuni, an important gastrointestinal pathogen, has the genetic determinants to produce a capsular polysaccharide (Karlyshev et al., Mol. Microbiol. 35:529-541, 2000). Despite these data, the presence of a capsule in these bacteria has remained controversial. In this study we stain C. jejuni cells with the cationic dye Alcian blue and demonstrate for the first time by electron microscopy that C. jejuni cells produce a polysaccharide capsule that is retained in the coccoid form but is absent in a kpsM mutant.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Alcian Blue / metabolism
  • Bacterial Capsules / metabolism
  • Bacterial Capsules / ultrastructure*
  • Campylobacter jejuni / metabolism
  • Campylobacter jejuni / ultrastructure*
  • Humans
  • Microscopy, Electron


  • Alcian Blue