The detection of micro-organisms accounts for a major part of the work in the laboratories of clinical
bacteriology. These centres focus on detecting bacteria in, e.g., swabs from the throat, faeces, wounds,
urine and other material. The aim is to ensure optimum growth conditions for bacteria or other micro-organisms,
to isolate them from a mixture of cultivated organisms, and to identify those whose presence might relate to the
given health condition of a patient. For this purpose cultivation media are used where the growth of bacteria leads
to the formation of colonies.
From the point of view of a laboratory of clinical microbiology, a photograph may become useful documentary material.
Photographs may be also very helpful in teaching microbiology, in which a number of laboratories take part. Just a few pictures may provide
a clear comparison between the growth properties of closely related species , reveal a different character of bacterial growth on various
types of media, and intra-species variability. This is useful in cases where the best possible verbal description would provide
only an incomplete, framework idea. Photographs may thus be used to acquaint students with a number of phenomena whose origin rests in the structure of bacterial cells and in their metabolic and genetic properties.