SUMMARY: Protoplasts of Bacillus megaterium grew well and divided in 1% casein hydrolysate (enzymic) medium containing 0.5 M-NaCl as the stabilizer. A fibrous layer of coat, possibly composed of murein, developed around the growing protoplast. A small protuberance then formed on the protoplast and grew until a symmetrical dumbbell-shaped body was formed. The coat did not develop around the ‘daughter’ protoplast.
Division was completely inhibited in the presence of penicillin, and a coat did not develop around the protoplast. Materials which might otherwise have formed the coat in the absence of penicillin were released into the medium.
After 12 h. of growth in the absence of penicillin, normal cell wall was formed around the cell, although reversion to bacillary form was not observed. The cells divided into 4 to 6 cells simultaneously by transverse septa, and intracellular membranous organelles (mesosomes) appeared within.
SUMMARY: Both wall and membrane teichoic acids from Lactobacillus helveticus NCIB 8025 are glycerol phosphate polymers partially substituted with α-D-glucosyl residues. The membrane teichoic acid, isolated as a complex with lipid (lipoteichoic acid), was antigenic when injected into rabbits with Freund's adjuvant. The α-D-glucosyl substituents are primarily responsible for the serological specificity of the membrane antigen, and account for the reaction of wall teichoic acid with antisera to the membrane teichoic acid. Glycerol teichoic acids either differing in or lacking sugar substitution may cross-react and the significance of these observations is discussed.