AMIES TRANSPORT MEDIUM WITH CHARCOAL is used for collecting, transporting and preserving microbiological specimens. It is formulated to maintain the viability of microorganisms without significant increase in growth, being nonnutritive, phosphate buffered and semi-solid. Amies developed his formula (1967) with charcoal upon proving that Neisseria gonorrhoeae increased its survival rate when charcoal swabs were used. Amies solved the problem of charcoal removal from the swabs by incorporating charcoal into the formulation. Amies Transport Medium is recommended for throat, vaginal, and wound samples. In the formulation, charcoal neutralizes fatty acids that are toxic to microorganisms. The chloride salts supply essential electrolytes for transport and osmotic balance. Phosphates act as a buffer system. Sodium thioglycollate suppresses oxidative changes and provides a reduced environment. The survival of bacteria in a transport medium depends on various factors such as bacteria type and concentration in the specimen, transport medium formulation, the temperature and duration of transport, and inoculation to appropriate culture media within 24 hours. Optimal growth and typical morphology can only be expected if direct inoculation and appropriate cultivation are followed.
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