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Selective differential human blood bilayer media for isolation of Gardnerella (Haemophilus) vaginalis.

  • P A Totten
  • R Amsel
  • J Hale
  • P Piot
  • K K Holmes
Publication Date
Jan 01, 1982


New selective and differential human blood bilayer agar media with Tween 80 (HBT medium) or without Tween 80 (HB medium), developed for the isolation of Gardnerella (Haemophilus) vaginalis, permitted significantly higher G. vaginalis isolation rates than have been obtained for other media used for this purpose. HB medium consists of a basal layer of Columbia agar base containing colistin and naladixic acid with added amphotericin B and an overlayer of the same composition plus 5% human blood. HBT agar also contains Proteose Peptone No. 3 (Difco Laboratories) and Tween 80 in the basal layer and the overlayer. Both Tween 80 and the bilayer composition enhanced G. vaginalis production of human blood hemolysis, permitting detection of this organism even in the presence of heavy growth of other vaginal flora. The use of HB or HBT medium thus permitted the demonstration that G. vaginalis was present in vaginal fluid from a large percentage (up to 68%) of normal women. However, the concentration of G. vaginalis was found by semiquantitative analysis to be significantly higher in vaginal fluid from women with nonspecific vaginitis than in fluid from normal women.

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