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J Bacteriol. May 1991; 173(9): 2888–2896.
PMCID: PMC207870

New structural features of the flagellar base in Salmonella typhimurium revealed by rapid-freeze electron microscopy.


The structure of the flagellar base in Salmonella typhimurium has been studied by rapid-freeze techniques. Freeze-substituted thin sections and freeze-etched replicas of cell envelope preparations have provided complementary information about the flagellar base. The flagellar base has a bell-shaped extension reaching as far as 50 nm into the bacterial cytoplasm. This structure can be recognized in intact bacteria but was studied in detail in cell envelopes, where some flagella lacking parts of the bell were helpful in understanding its substructure. Structural relationships may be inferred between this cytoplasmic component of the flagellum and the recently described flagellar intramembrane particle rings as well as the structures associated with the basal body in isolated, chemically fixed flagella.

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