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Sepsis with a New Species of Corynebacterium

KENNETH R. HANDE, M.D.; FRANK G. WITEBSKY, M.D.; MARILYN S. BROWN, B.S.; CAROL B. SCHULMAN, M.D.; SETH E. ANDERSON Jr., M.D., F.A.C.P.; ARTHUR S. LEVINE, M.D.; JAMES D. MacLOWRY, M.D.; and BRUCE A. CHABNER, M.D., F.A.C.P.
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▸Requests for reprints should be addressed to Kenneth R. Hande, M.D.; National Cancer Institute, Bldg. 10, Rm. 6N119, National Institutes of Health; Bethesda, MD 20014.


Bethesda, Maryland


Ann Intern Med. 1976;85(4):423-426. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-85-4-423
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Sepsis with a previously undescribed species of Corynebacterium was documented in four patients. All patients had predisposing illness at the time of infection, three patients having leukemia in relapse and one having a porencephalic cyst and a ventriculoatrial shunt. The isolates from blood cultures had a characteristic metallic sheen when grown on blood agar. They were resistant to most antibiotics tested, including the penicillins, but were uniformly sensitive to vancomycin. Common biochemical characteristics, the metallic sheen, and the unusual antibiotic sensitivity pattern suggest that these isolates comprise a new species or group of closely related species of Corynebacterium that is capable of infection in man.

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