S. Epidermidis Research Paper

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Staphylococci are nonmotile, non-spore forming, spherical, catalase-positive, gram-positive bacteria. Staphylococci are classified as either coagulase-positive or coagulase-negative. Staphylococcus epidermidis lack the enzyme coagulase and are classified as a coagulase-negative staphylococcus (CoNS) (John et al.; Namvar et al.; Otto; Tortora et al. 591). Because of their thick peptidoglycan layer, gram-positive cocci are well suited for survival in harsh conditions, including living in areas with high concentrations of salt and osmotic pressure. Specifically, “S. epidermidis has eight sodium/ion exchangers and six transport systems for osmoprotectants” (Otto) which enable the bacteria to survive otherwise inhabitable conditions (Tortora et al. 591).…show more content…
S. epidermidis account for anywhere from sixty to ninety percent of our microbiota; they exist in a commensal relationship, colonizing in the armpits, between the legs, in the nose, throat, and eyes where they are able survive by metabolizing secretions (John et al.; Namvar et al.; Otto; Tortora et al. 404 and 591). As part of our natural microflora S. epidermidis provide for competitive exclusion to potentially harmful bacteria, such as coagulase-positive staphylococci, Staph. aureus. Likewise, our body’s use nasal secretions, ciliary action, conjunctiva, and tears to limit S. epidermidis colonization. Typically S. epidermidis function as innocuous, friendly bacteria on the human skin, it is not until this barrier is broken that S. epidermidis may act as an enemy (Otto; Tortora et al. 592). Immunosuppressed people and very low birth weight newborns are at greater risk for S. epidermidis infection as well (Cheung and Otto; John et
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