A study of the anchorage of the flagella in swarmers of Proteus mirabilis led to the incidental observation of microtubules. These microtubules were found in thin sections and in whole mount preparations of cells from which most of the content had been released by osmotic shock before staining negatively with potassium phosphotungstate (PTA). The microtubules are in negatively stained preparations about 200 A wide, i.e. somewhat thicker than the flagella (approximately 130 A). They are thus somewhat thinner than most microtubules recorded for other cells. They are referred to as microtubules because of their smooth cylindrical wall, or cortex, surrounding a hollow core which is readily filled with PTA when stained negatively. Since this is probably the first time that such a structure is described inside a bacterium, we do not know for certain whether it represents a normal cell constituent or an abnormality, for instance of the type of "polysheaths" (16).

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