Acholeplasma laidlawii belongs to an order of mycoplasma. Mycoplasma contain only a cell membrane and have no cell wall. They are not susceptible to beta-lactams and do not take up Gram stain. Individual organisms are pleomorphic (assume various shape from cocci to rods to filaments), varying in size from 0.2 to 0.3 microns or smaller. It has been shown that Acholeplasma laidlawii is capable of penetrating a 0.2 micron filter, but is retained by a 0.1 micron filter . Acholeplasma laidlawii is known to be associated with animal-derived material, and microbiological media is often from animal sources. Environmental monitoring of mycoplasma requires selective media (PPLO broth or agar).
For now, this firm has decided to filter prepared TSB, for use in media fills, through a 0.1 micron filter (note: we do not expect or require firms to routinely use 0.1 micron filters for media preparation). In the future, the firm will use sterile, irradiated TSB when it becomes available from a commercial supplier. (Firm’s autoclave is too small to permit processing of TSB for media fills, so this was not a viable option.) The firm will continue monitoring for mycoplasma and has revalidated their cleaning procedure to verify its removal. In this case, a thorough investigation by the firm led to a determination of the cause of the failure and an appropriate corrective action.
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