Brachyspira (Serpulina) pilosicoli related to intestinal spirochaetosis were found to interfere in vitro with the haemolytic activity and the growth of Staphylococcus aureus beta-toxin producer. This interference was clearly appreciated because a reduction of the zone of the staphylococcal beta-toxin activity, the reduction and/or absence of cooperative haemolysis between bacteria, and the growth reduction of S. aureus were observed when B. (S.) pilosicoli were grown 72-96 hours sooner than S. aureus and after the inoculum of the latter the plates were anaerobically incubated for additional 48-72 hours. The phenomenon was more clearly observed when B. (S.) pilosicoli had a concentration of 8x10(6)-8x10(7) CFU/ml and S. aureus at a concentration ranging from 10(7) to 10(1) CFU/ml was inoculated at a distance from the streaks of B. (S.) pilosicoli ranging from 0-10 mm. When B. (S.) pilosicoli and S. aureus were inoculated at the same time and when B. (S.) pilosicoli grew 24-48 hours sooner than S. aureus only a cooperative haemolysis was observed.
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