Which antigens do members of the Klebsiella genus typically express?

Updated: Jun 10, 2019
  • Author: Shahab Qureshi, MD, FACP; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Answer

Members of the Klebsiella genus typically express 2 types of antigens on their cell surface. The first is a lipopolysaccharide (O antigen); the other is a capsular polysaccharide (K antigen). Both of these antigens contribute to pathogenicity. About 77 K antigens and 9 O antigens exist. The structural variability of these antigens forms the basis for classification into various serotypes. The virulence of all serotypes appears to be similar.


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