Flagella

Flagella give bacteria the ability to move about actively. The flagella (singular flagellum) are made up of a class of linear proteins called flagellins. Flagel-

— Bacterial flagella -

— Bacterial flagella -

Monotrichous Sem Images
Fig.3.13 a Flagellated bacterial cell (SEM, 13 000x). b Helical structure of bacterial flagella (SEM, 77 000x).

lated bacteria are described as monotrichous, lophotrichous, or peritrichous, depending on how the flagella are arranged (see Fig. 3.1, p. 147). The basal body traverses the cell wall and cytoplasmic membrane to anchor the flagel-lum (see Figs. 3.7 and 3.13) and enables it to whirl about its axis like a propeller. In Enterobacteriaceae, the flagellar antigens are called H antigens. Together with the O antigens, they are used to classify bacteria in serovars.

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Essentials of Human Physiology

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