Magnified 400X, this micrograph depicted details displayed by a specimen consisting of lung tissue from a Knoxville patient with a fatal pneumonia due to Legionnaires' disease. A fluorescent antibody stain was implemented consisting of the Knoxville strain conjugate, i.e., an antibody with an affinity to L. pneumophila bacterial antgen, and a fluorochrome, which is a fluorescent dye, e.g. fluorescein isothiocyanate. The presence of the Legionella bacteria was evidenced when the antibody-dye complex became bound to serum antigen circulating throughout the patient due to the presence of the pathogen. Subsequently, when the antibody conjugate-antigen complex was exposed to light it produced a fluorescent effect.
CDC/ Dr. William Cherry
December 1, 2012
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