Interaction between Trichomonas vaginalis and other pathogenic micro-organisms of the human genital tract

Br J Vener Dis. 1984 Feb;60(1):31-8. doi: 10.1136/sti.60.1.31.


Trichomonas vaginalis organisms were mixed with suspensions of Neisseria gonorrhoeae, Mycoplasma hominis or Chlamydia trachomatis to allow ingestion of these micro-organisms by the trichomonads. Culture studies indicated that gonococci and mycoplasmas were ingested and that the number of intracellular viable organisms decreased rapidly, most gonococci being killed within six hours and all mycoplasmas within three hours. Electron microscopy revealed phagocytic uptake and destruction of these two micro-organisms within the trichomonads, gonococcal degradation being associated with lysosomal enzyme activity. There was no evidence from cultural or electron microscopy studies that C trachomatis organisms persisted in mixed culture with T vaginalis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Chlamydia trachomatis / physiology*
  • Endocytosis
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Microbiological Techniques
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Mycoplasma / physiology*
  • Mycoplasma / ultrastructure
  • Neisseria gonorrhoeae / physiology*
  • Neisseria gonorrhoeae / ultrastructure
  • Phagocytosis
  • Trichomonas vaginalis / enzymology
  • Trichomonas vaginalis / physiology*
  • Trichomonas vaginalis / ultrastructure