Fimbriation, hemagglutination and adherence properties of fresh clinical isolates of Branhamella catarrhalis

Microbiol Immunol. 1992;36(10):1009-17. doi: 10.1111/j.1348-0421.1992.tb02105.x.


This study investigated the fimbriation on 24 fresh clinical isolates of Branhamella catarrhalis by electron microscopy. All the strains were isolated from patients with respiratory infections. The Branhamella catarrhalis strains were classified into three groups according to the grade of fimbriation. Among these 24 strains the incidence of densely fimbriated, moderately fimbriated and sparsely fimbriated isolates were 12 (50%), 7 (29%) and 5 (21%), respectively. After five-times serial subculture on Brain Heart Infusion agar, the average number of fimbriae per bacteria was decreased from 174 to 114 in the densely fimbriated strain and from 48 to 10 in the moderately fimbriated strain. Moreover, 20% of the population became non-fimbriated in moderately fimbriated strain after the serial subculture. In strains with higher hemagglutination titer the number of fimbriae was significantly (P < 0.04) more than in strains with lower hemagglutination titer.

MeSH terms

  • Bacterial Adhesion / physiology*
  • Fimbriae, Bacterial / physiology*
  • Fimbriae, Bacterial / ultrastructure
  • Hemagglutination*
  • Humans
  • Moraxella catarrhalis / isolation & purification
  • Moraxella catarrhalis / physiology*
  • Moraxella catarrhalis / ultrastructure
  • Neisseriaceae Infections / microbiology
  • Respiratory Tract Infections / microbiology
  • Sputum / microbiology
  • beta-Lactamases / metabolism


  • beta-Lactamases