This bacteria stains gram-positive, which means that it retains large amounts of the Gram stain due to its high peptidoglycan content in the cell wall.
C. perfringens is a blunt-ended rod-shaped bacteria.
This bacteria prefers to grow in an anaerobic environment.
This bacteria is capable of forming spores when in an unfavorable state. It can quickly germinate and produce bacteria in its vegetative state when in preferable conditions.
This is the most clinically significant exotoxin produced by C. perfringens. The alpha-toxin contains phospholipase, which is a toxin capable of destroying phospholipids, in particular lecithin found in the cell membranes of RBCs, WBCs, and muscle cells.
The alpha-toxin contains a phospholipase capable of destroying phospholipid present in the cell membrane.
C. perfringens produces a heat-labile enterotoxin that causes loss of cellular fluid and can lead to dehydration.
This bacteria causes myonecrosis through its phospholipase activity in the alpha toxin, which can destroy the cell membrane of muscle cells.
C. perfringens produces hydrogen and carbon dioxide during replication, which results in gas formation in tissues. The resulting hemolysis and necrosis from alpha-toxin activity creates gas gangrene.
C. perfringens causes clostridial food poisoning through its enterotoxin, resulting in abdominal pain and diarrhea.
This can be a useful treatment for gas gangrene, as the hyperbaric oxygen chamber increases the oxygen content in tissues and slows or prevents bacterial growth since C. perfringens prefers an anaerobic environment.
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