The clinical importance of gram-positive anaerobic cocci isolated at St Bartholomew's Hospital, London, in 1987

J Med Microbiol. 1994 Jul;41(1):36-44. doi: 10.1099/00222615-41-1-36.


The clinical importance of the gram-positive anaerobic cocci (GPAC) isolated in 1987 at St Bartholomew's Hospital, London, is assessed. Of about 800 anaerobic isolates, 209 (27%) were GPAC, of which 67 (32%) were from abscesses and 22 (11%) were in pure growth. Four species comprised 77% of the 168 isolates available for study: Peptostreptococcus magnus (55 isolates, 33%), P. micros (23, 14%), P. asaccharolyticus (24, 14%) P. asaccharolyticus (24, 14%) and P. anaerobius (27, 16%). Different species were associated with different sites, from P. magnus (usually skin-associated sites; normally cultured with aerobes, infrequently with other anaerobes), P. asaccharolyticus (distributed widely) and P. anaerobius (usually genitourinary and gastrointestinal; always below the diaphragm) to P. micros (always deep sites with other anaerobes). P. magnus was isolated from 15 abscesses and was obtained in pure culture from 11 specimens, six of them abscesses developing from infected sebaceous cysts. P. micros was usually isolated from soft tissue abscesses, never from the skin, and with a characteristic mixed flora consisting of "Streptococcus milleri" and anaerobic gram-negative rods. P. heliotrinreducens was a rare isolate from similar specimens. P. asaccharolyticus was cultured from a wide variety of sites, typically mixed with both aerobes and anaerobes, and frequently from abscesses. Most isolates of P. anaerobius came from gastrointestinal or female genitourinary specimens, never from above the diaphragm and rarely from the skin; cultures were usually heavily mixed. Isolates of P. vaginalis and the "bGAL" group made up 11% of str ains and were usally cultured from superficial sites, P. vaginalis often from post-operative wound infections with Staphylococcus aureus.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Abscess / microbiology
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Gram-Positive Bacterial Infections / microbiology*
  • Humans
  • London
  • Male
  • Peptococcus / isolation & purification*
  • Peptostreptococcus / isolation & purification*