A serotyping scheme for () type A employing 57 antisera has been used to investigate the epidemiology of 153 food-poisoning outbreaks and 32 cases of gas gangrene and other clinical infections. Respectively 65 % and 59 % of the isolates were typable, and in 55 % of the food-poisoning outbreaks the causative serotypes were established. Isolation and reporting methods that would render the typing scheme of even greater epidemiological value are described.

The type-specific antigen was shown to reside in the capsule and to be lost from strains that had become rough. Development of roughness and its prevention are described.

A great range of antisera and an internationally acceptable serotyping scheme is expected after integration of this set with those developed independently in America and Japan.


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