Staphylococcus capitis weak haemolytic colonies
on Sheep Blood Agar
Staphylococcus capitis, Gram-stained cells
Staphylococcus capitis
Taxonomy
Morphology
Cultural characteristics
Biochemical characters
Ecology
Pathogenicity
References
Phylum Firmicutes, Class Bacilli, Order Bacillales, Family Staphylococcaceae, Genus Staphylococcus, Staphylococcus capitis  Kloos
and Schleifer 1975.
- Staphylococcus capitis subsp. capitis  Kloos and Schleifer 1975,
- Staphylococcus capitis subsp. urealyticus  Bannerman and Kloos 1991.
Gram positive cocci, 0.5 - 1.2 μm, nonmotile, nonspore-forming, singly or grouped in
pairs and clusters.
Colonies are smooth, slightly convex, glistening, opaque, and white or grayish white;
after storage in the cold (4-10 ºC). Some strains become yellowish or yellow-orange.
Colony diameter is  1-3 mm (subsp. capitis) or  4.3-7.1mm ( subsp.urealyticus).
Facultatively anaerobic. optimum growth temperature is 37 ºC. Grows best under
aerobic conditions. Other media: Nutrient agar or nutrient broth, Trypticase Soy Agar ±
5% sheep blood, Mueller Hinton agar, Chapman (selective medium with 75 g/l de
NaCl & mannitol).
Isolated from human & animal skin; widely distributed in nature.
Sensible to novobiocin.
- skin surface commensal of man and animals;
- some endocarditis reports, septicemia to neonates;
- nosocomial infections (rarely).
  1. Holt J.G., Krieg N.R., Sneath P.H.A., Staley J.T., Wiliams S.T., 1994. Bergey's Manual of Determinative Bacteriology, Ninth Edition,
    Williams & Wilkins, Baltimore. Group 17, Gram-Positive Cocci, 527-558.
  2. Kloos W.E. & Schleifer K.H.: Isolation and characterization of staphylococci from human skin. II. Description of four new species:
    Staphylococcus warneri, Staphylococcus capitis, Staphylococcus hominis, and Staphylococcus simulans. International Journal of
    Systematic Bacteriology, 1975, 25, 62-79.
  3. Bannerman T.L. & Kloos W.E.: Staphylococcus capitis subsp. ureolyticus (sic) subsp. nov. from human skin. Int. J. Syst. Bacteriol.,
    1991, 41, 144-147.
  4. Karl-Heinz Schleifer and Julia A. Bell, 2009. Family VIII. Staphylococcaceae fam. nov.. In: (Eds.) P.D. Vos, G. Garrity, D. Jones, N.R.
    Krieg, W. Ludwig, F.A. Rainey, K.-H. Schleifer, W.B. Whitman. Bergey’s Manual of Systematic Bacteriology, Volume 3: The
    Firmicutes, Springer, 392-426.
See tables for subspecies differential characters.

Positive results for catalase, acid production from: fructose, glucose, mannitol,
mannose & sucrose.

Negative results for alkaline phosphatase, coagulase, clumping factor, heat-stable
nuclease, beta-glucosidase, acid production from: arabinose, cellobiose, melezitose,
raffinose, salicin, trehalose, xylitol & xylose.

Variable results for nitrates reduction & acetoin production.
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Hemolysis
Colony > 5mm
Pigment
Aerobic growth
Anaerobic growth
Nitrates reduction
Subsp. capitis
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d
Subsp. urealyticus
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Growth on
10% NaCl
Growth on 15%
NaCl
Growth at
15 ºC
Growth at
45 ºC
FDP-aldolase Class 1
FDP-aldolase Class 2
Acetoin production
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-
-
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d
 
 
 
 
 
 
d
Growth on
(NH
4)2SO4.
Urease
DNase
Arginine
dihydrolase
Galactose
Lactose
Turanose
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-
d
d
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d