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    Flavobacterium columnare is a problematic pathogen for the aquaculture industry where isolates are classified by genomovars. Suspended growth in a low nutrient media, like tryptone yeast extract salts, is a common method used for laboratory study. The presence of calcium and magnesium is the factor contributing to growth, virulence, and biofilm formation for F. columnare. Exponential growth occurs within 24 h for F. columnare when grown in complete tryptone yeast extract salts medium at 30 ºC. Withholding CaCl2 and MgSO4 components from a complete TYES formulation reduced or completely inhibited growth of genomovar I isolates but not the growth of genomovar II, IIB, or III isolates. Only 3 of 20 genomovar I isolates, MS-FC-4, FC-CSF-53, and 023-08-3, could achieve O.D. 540 readings ≥ 0.3 but only after 48-h incubation in cation-restricted TYES. Independently adding CaCl2 or MgSO4 to tryptone and yeast extracts did not result in a genomovar-specific growth phenotype, but generally demonstrated increased clumping with individual isolates presenting abnormal growth. Clumping formed filamentous strings that migrated to the top of the culture tube when isolates were grown in TYE+CaCl2. Several of the F. columnare isolates from all the genomovars exhibited delayed growth when a single cation source was provided. This study demonstrates phenotypic differences between and within genomovars of a single bacterial species when grown under different TYES media conditions.


    Jason P Evenhuis, Ryan Lipscomb, Clayton Birkett. Growth of Flavobacterium columnare Genomovars in the Presence or Lack of Supplemental Cations. Current microbiology. 2021 Jul;78(7):2474-2480

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    PMID: 33991203

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