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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Sexually Transmitted Bacterial Infections (by ASCLS). Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Chlamydia trachomatis

  • Small intracellular bacterium
  • Has gram negative cell wall but is not seen in gram stains
  • 36-48 hour life cycle
  • Elementary bodies--infectious stage
  • Endocytosed by epithelial cells
  • Divide by binary fission to become reticulate bodies
  • Reticulate bodies are inclusion in epithelial cells
  • Gram stains of infected material show many WBCs but no organisms

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