Effect of Blood Agar from Different Animal Blood on Growth Rates and Morphology of Common Pathogenic Bacteria


Sheep and horse blood are the most commonly used blood for the isolation of microorganisms from human tissue and fluids. However, in many developing countries such as Nigeria, expired human blood from blood banks is still used despite the risk of exposure to HIV and other blood-borne infections, because it is easy to obtain. Blood agar made from blood of rams (similar to sheep), cows, chickens and goats, which are very common in Nigeria, were therefore evaluated. The isolation rates, colony size and morphology as well as haemolytic characteristics of common hospital pathogens such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella pneumonae, Staphylococcus aureus, and Streptococcus spp, were tested on blood agar prepared from the different animal blood types. All reactions were observed at 24 hrs and 48 hrs respectively. Good growth was achieved by all isolates on rabbit, sheep and chicken blood agar though the best growth was achieved on ram blood agar but there was no significant variation in their morphology. There were differences in their abilities to distinguish haemolytic patterns. Beta Haemolytic Streptococci remained the same on all the blood agar, but the haemolysis of Staphylococci aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa varied on different media while haemolysis was least consistent on chicken and cow blood agar. Ram blood agar gave the best reactions in terms of good growth rates of organisms, good morphological characterization as well as good haemolytic reactions. Besides, it is easily available and large quantities of blood can be obtained. Despite the good qualities of ram blood agar observed in this study, however, there is a need for it to be tested further for its ability to support more fastidious organisms.

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Egwuatu, T. , Ogunsola, F. , Okodugha, I. , Jide, B. , Arewa, D. and Osinupebi, O. (2014) Effect of Blood Agar from Different Animal Blood on Growth Rates and Morphology of Common Pathogenic Bacteria. Advances in Microbiology, 4, 1237-1241. doi: 10.4236/aim.2014.416133.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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