Chlamydia trachomatis

Chlamydia trachomatis
Chlamydia trachomatis
Scientific classification e
Domain: Bacteria
Phylum: Chlamydiae
Class: Chlamydiae
Order: Chlamydiales
Family: Chlamydiaceae
Genus: Chlamydia
Species: C. trachomatis
Binomial name
Chlamydia trachomatis[1]
(Busacca 1935) Rake 1957 emend. Everett et al. 1999
  • Rickettsia trachomae (sic) Busacca 1935
  • Rickettsia trachomatis (Busacca 1935) Foley and Parrot 1937
  • Chlamydozoon trachomatis (Busacca 1935) Moshkovski 1945

Chlamydia trachomatis, an obligate intracellular human pathogen, is one of three bacterial species in the genus Chlamydia.[2] C. trachomatis is a Gram-negative bacteria, therefore its cell wall components retain the counter-stain safranin and appear pink under a light microscope.[3]

The inclusion bodies of Chlamydia trachomatis were first described in 1907, the Chlamydia trachomatis agent was first cultured in the yolk sacs of eggs by Feifan Tang et al in 1957.[4]

Chlamydial infection. Advances in the diagnostic isolation of Chlamydia, including TRIC agent, from the eye, genital tract, and rectum.[5]

C. trachomatis includes three human biovars: trachoma (serovars A, B, Ba or C), urethritis (serovars D-K), and lymphogranuloma venereum (LGV, serovars L1, 2 and 3).[6] Many, but not all, C. trachomatis strains have an extrachromosomal plasmid.[7]



Chlamydia species are readily identified and distinguished from other chlamydial species using DNA-based tests.

Most strains of C. trachomatis are recognized by monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) to epitopes in the VS4 region of MOMP.[8] However, these mAbs may also cross-react with two other Chlamydia species, C. suis and C. muridarum.

Life cycle

Chlamydae Life Cycle.svg

Clinical significance

C. trachomatis is an obligate intracellular pathogen (i.e. the bacterium lives within human cells) and can cause numerous disease states in both men and women.[2] Both sexes can display urethritis, proctitis (rectal disease and bleeding), trachoma, and infertility. The bacterium can cause prostatitis and epididymitis in men. In women, cervicitis, pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), ectopic pregnancy, and acute or chronic pelvic pain are frequent complications. C. trachomatis is also an important neonatal pathogen, where it can lead to infections of the eye (trachoma) and pulmonary complications.[citation needed] Chlamydia trachomatis is the single most important infectious agent associated with blindness; approximately 600million worldwide suffer C. trachomatis eye infections and 20million are blinded as a result of the infection.[citation needed]


C. trachomatis may be treated with any of several antibiotics: azithromycin, erythromycin or doxycycline/tetracycline.[9]

See also

  • Chlamydial infection
  • Translocated actin-recruiting phosphoprotein


  1. ^ J.P. Euzéby. "Chlamydia". List of Prokaryotic names with Standing in Nomenclature. Retrieved 2008-09-11. 
  2. ^ a b Ryan KJ, Ray CG (editors) (2004). Sherris Medical Microbiology (4th ed.). McGraw Hill. pp. 463–70. ISBN 0838585299. 
  3. ^ Kenyon College - Dept. of Biology (2006-08-15). "Chlamydia". MicrobeWiki. Retrieved 2008-10-27. 
  4. ^ S Darougar, B R Jones, J R Kinnison, J D Vaughan-Jackson, and E M Dunlop. Chlamydial infection. Advances in the diagnostic isolation of Chlamydia, including TRIC agent, from the eye, genital tract, and rectum. Br J Vener Dis. 1972 December; 48(6): 416–420; TANG FF, HUANG YT, CHANG HL, WONG KC. Further studies on the isolation of the trachoma virus. Acta Virol. 1958 Jul-Sep;2(3):164-70; TANG FF, CHANG HL, HUANG YT, WANG KC. Studies on the etiology of trachoma with special reference to isolation of the virus in chick embryo. Chin Med J. 1957 Jun;75(6):429-47; TANG FF, HUANG YT, CHANG HL, WONG KC. Isolation of trachoma virus in chick embryo. J Hyg Epidemiol Microbiol Immunol. 1957;1(2):109-20
  5. ^ Budai I (March 2007). "Chlamydia trachomatis: milestones in clinical and microbiological diagnostics in the last hundred years: a review". Acta microbiologica et immunologica Hungarica 54 (1): 5–22. doi:10.1556/AMicr.54.2007.1.2. PMID 17523388. 
  6. ^ Fredlund H, Falk L, Jurstrand M, Unemo M (2004). "Molecular genetic methods for diagnosis and characterisation of Chlamydia trachomatis and Neisseria gonorrhoeae: impact on epidemiological surveillance and interventions". APMIS : acta pathologica, microbiologica, et immunologica Scandinavica 112 (11–12): 771–84. doi:10.1111/j.1600-0463.2004.apm11211-1205.x. PMID 15638837. 
  7. ^ Carlson JH, Whitmire WM, Crane DD, et al. (June 2008). "The Chlamydia trachomatis Plasmid Is a Transcriptional Regulator of Chromosomal Genes and a Virulence Factor". Infection and immunity 76 (6): 2273–83. doi:10.1128/IAI.00102-08. PMC 2423098. PMID 18347045. 
  8. ^ Ortiz L, Angevine M, Kim SK, Watkins D, DeMars R (2000). "T-Cell Epitopes in Variable Segments of Chlamydia trachomatis Major Outer Membrane Protein Elicit Serovar-Specific Immune Responses in Infected Humans". Infect. Immun. 68 (3): 1719–23. doi:10.1128/IAI.68.3.1719-1723.2000. PMC 97337. PMID 10678996. 
  9. ^ Chlamydia Information

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  • Chlamydia trachomatis — A bacterium that causes a disease called trachoma that results in blindness so frequently that it places a huge burden a year on world health funding ($25 billion in the year 2000). The disease goes by a number of names such as sandy blight. The… …   Medical dictionary

  • Chlamydia trachomatis — Trachoma Tra*cho ma, n. [NL., fr. Gr. ? roughness, fr. ? rough.] (Med.) a contagious granular conjunctivitis caused by the bacterium {Chlamydia trachomatis}. It is a chronic inflammation of the conjunctiva {Tra*chom a*tous}, a. [Webster 1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Chlamydia trachomatis pneumonia — a mild type of bacterial pneumonia, usually seen in infants whose mothers are infected with Chlamydia trachomatis; characteristics include coughing, tachypnea, and eosinophilia …   Medical dictionary

  • Chlamydia trachomatis — noun bacteria responsible for the sexually transmitted diseases chlamydia and lymphogranuloma venereum • Syn: ↑C. trachomatis • Hypernyms: ↑chlamydia …   Useful english dictionary

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