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Some aspects of the gastrointestinal microflora of germfree mice associated with cultured microfloras

Koopman, J. P., Kennis, Henriëtie M., Stadhouders, A. M., De Boer, H.
Laboratory animals 1983 v.17 no.3 pp. 188-195
Gram-positive bacteria, cecum, colon, epithelium, esophagus, feces, flora, ileum, laboratory animals, mice, plate count, scanning electron microscopy, stomach
Attempts are described to 'normalize' germfree mice by association with 3, 21 and 71 different intestinal bacterial cultures isolated from mice with an SPF flora. Germfree mice associated naturally with an SPF flora served as controls. Vital bacterial counts were determined by aerobic and anaerobic culture. Stomach and small intestine contained fewer bacteria per gram than caecum and large intestine. Aerobic vital counts from caecum and large intestine were higher in the experimental groups than in control mice. The aerobic and anaerobic flora in stomach and small intestine comprised mainly Gram-positive nonfusiform shaped rods. In the caecum and colon Gram-positive cocci predominated in the aerobic culture while in the anaerobic culture fusiform-shaped rods were prominent. Scanning electron microscopy of oesophagus, ileum, caecum and faeces demonstrated colonization of the oesophageal epithelium only after association with 71 bacterial strains; the filamentous bacteria present in the ileum of SPF mice were not found in the experimental groups and caecum and faeces contained mainly fusiform-shaped bacteria. Nonbacterial matter decreased in the caecum and faeces with increase in the complexity of the flora.