Laboratory Diagnosis Isolation Procedures

Enterococci grow well on blood agar base media containing 5% animal blood and on many other media [e.g., Mueller-Hinton, brain-heart infusion (BHI), dextrose phosphate, chocolate] that are not selective for Gram-negative bacteria. Some strains of E. faecalis produce P-hemolysis on media containing rabbit, human or horse blood but not sheep blood. Bile-esculin azide (Enterococcosel agar) or other commercially available azide-containing media, Columbia colistin-nalidixic acid (CNA) agar, phenylethyl alcohol (PEA) agar, SF agar, triphenyl tetrazolium chloride azide agar (m-Enterococcus agar), among others, may be used to isolate enterococci from mixed samples containing Gram-negative bacteria.

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