Taxonomy: Class Blastocystea
Animal: Blastocystis hominis 3 04.jpg
Blastocystis hominis in fresh stool - TEM. The organisms found in fresh stool are predominately multivacuolar rather than containing a single central vacuole as seen in cultured cells. A very thick surface coat often up to 5 microns thick covers the cells and bacteria are often seen associated with, or embedded in, this fibrillar matrix. (EM by Deb Stenzel). (see Boreham PFL and Stenzel DJ. 1993. Blastocystis in Humans and Animals. IN Advances in Parasitology. Vol 32. Acad Press. London). Unless the specimen is examined fresh or fixed with PVA or formalin immediately on passing, the in vivo forms ( avacuolar, amoeboid and multi- vacuolar forms) will have deteriorated and only the CV or granular forms will be seen in wet preparations, cysts will be missed if a stained smear is not examined due to their small size - 5 microns - light microscopy being the usual way to examine faecal samples.
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