SUMMARY: Three wild-type strains tested grew into long forms, up to 80 times their original lengths, when incubated in cell-free microbial extracts. This growth occurred both in extracts of organisms permissive and non-permissive for Bdellovibrio parasitic growth, but not in any other medium tested. Under certain osmotic conditions the long forms segmented into chains of cells. Some division of chains occurred. Only approximately 5% of the bdellovibrios grew into long forms. H-thymidine was incorporated into the long forms but not into short forms. A component of extracts which supported growth of Bdellovibrios was macromolecular, heat stable and resistant to pronase, DNAse and RNAse.


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