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NC Department of Health and Human Services
State Laboratory of Public Health
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Microbiology: Atypical Bacteriology

The Atypical Bacteriology lab serves primarily as a referral laboratory for bacteria that are unusual or difficult to identify, such as, Bacillus, Corynebacterium, Haemophilus, Neisseria, Pasteurella, Pseudomonas and similar organisms and “unclassified” bacteria.

Pure isolates are required for identification or serotyping and specimens are accepted from public and private health care providers. Cultures from animal or environmental sources must be associated with human illness. Anaerobic cultures and antimicrobial susceptibility testing are not performed in this laboratory

Services available in the Atypical Bacteriology lab include:

  • confirmation and serotyping of Neisseria meningitidis and Haemophilus influenzae
  • confirmation of Neisseria gonorrhoeae
  • confirmation of Listeria monocytogenes
  • identification of nonfermentative gram-negative bacilli
  • identification of gram-negative fermentative bacilli not included in the family Enterobacteriaceae
  • identification of gram-positive Bacillus sp. and coryneform rods
  • identification or referral of cultures which are unidentifiable at the local level due to special growth requirements, atypical test results, or misidentification from automated systems. Hazardous suspected organisms such as Brucella should be directed to the Bioterrorism Unit.

Please Note: The North Carolina Communicable Disease Control rules (10A NCAC 41A.0209) state that laboratories isolating Neisseria meningitidis and Haemophilus influenzae from a normally sterile site shall test the organism for specific serogroup or send the isolate to the State Public Health Laboratory for serogrouping.

SLPH Microbiology Information