VIVA Alert: Basic Microbiology with mnemonics

Name one cluster shaped (grape-like) cocci?
Staphylococcus aureus

Name one chain shaped cocci?
Streptococcus spp.

What is the difference between Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus?
S. aureus is cluster shaped and Streptococcus is chain shaped.
S. aureus is catalase-positive and Streptococcus is catalase negative.

Name any five lactose fermenting organisms?
Escherichia coli, Klebsiella spp. , Enterobacter spp. , Citrobacter spp @ KC Enter cold Serrak ( laughing)

Name any seven non-lactose fermenting organisms?
Salmonella, Shigella, Proteus, Morganella, Providencia, Edwardsiella, Hafnia @ She provides half  Sal in  ED from non-government organization

Name any ten aerobic bacteria?                                                                                                         
Bacillus, Staphylococcus, Streptococcus, Escherichia coli, Proteus, Pseudomonas, Klebsiella, Salmonella, Shigella, Nocardia @No She is(es)  bacK with pro staff ( staph) not pseudo (false ) type.

Name any seven anaerobic bacteria?
Clostridium, Actinomyces, Propionibacterium, Bifidobacterium, Bacteroides, Fusobacterium, Prevotella @ An AC fuse previously closed by propi bacteria

Name any two spirochetes?
Treponema and Borrelia @ spring trip was boring

Name any five endospore-forming bacteria?
Bacillus, Clostridium, Coxiella burnetii, Desulfotomaculum, Geobacillus @ BaD Ox closed geo tomato inside.

Why we don’t underline/italicized the Typhi while writing Salmonella Typhi? first letter T  is also capitalized?
Because we underline the genus and species. Salmonella is a genus but Typhi is not species. Salmonella consists of two species i.e enterica and bongori. It is actually Salmonella enterica subsp. enterica serovar Typhi.

Salmonella is motile or non-motile?
It is motile having peritrichous flagella

Are there any exceptions?
Salmonella Pullorum and Salmonella Gallinarum are non-motile.

Name any four species of Shigella?
It consists of four species i.e Shigella dysenteriae, S. flexneri, S. boydii, S. sonnei.

VIVA Alert Basic Microbiology with mnemonics

Interesting Science Videos

Human disease and causative agents

Gonorrhoea=Neisseria gonorrhoea
Ascariasis =Ascaris lumbricoides
Athletes’s foot= Trichophyton
Bacillary Dysentry=Shigella dysenteriae
Botulism=Clostridium botulinum
Chicken pox=Varicella virus

Cholera=Vibrio cholerae
Common cold=Rhino virus

Diphtheria=Corynebacterium diphtheriae
Whooping cough=Bordetella pertusis
Vaginatis=Trichomonas vaginalis
Sleeping sickness=Tryponosoma brucei
Kalazar=Leishmania donovani
Plague=Yersinia pestis
Ringworm=Microsporum trichophyton
Leprosy=Mycobacterium leprae
Hookworm disease=Ancyclostoma duodenale
Pinworm disease=Enterobius vermicularis caecum


  • TJ. Mackie and JE. McCartney (1996). “Mackie and McCartney Practical Medical Microbiology,14thedition, New York, Churchill living stone
  • Chaurasia R and Jain A (2009). “Self Assessment and Review Microbiology Immunology”,4thedition, Jaypee Brothers Medical Publishers Ltd, New Delhi, India, page number: 03 -09.

About Author

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Sushmita Baniya

Sushmita Baniya completed her Master’s degree in Medical Microbiology from the National College of Science and Technology (NIST), Kathmandu, Nepal. She did her Bachelor’s degree in Microbiology from Birendra Multiple Campus, Chitwan, Nepal. She is interested in Genetics and Molecular Biology.

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