Neisseria gonorrhoeae, as well as other Neisseriae, produce polyphosphate. This polyphosphate exists in two forms. Approximately half of it is loosely associated with the cells and can be recovered by washing in neutral buffers under conditions in which no significant lysis of the cells is observed. The other half is either intracellular or tightly associated, because it requires digestion of the cells with perchloric acid or sodium hypochlorite. Polyphosphate obtained by both methods was purified by column chromatography and chemically characterized. In contrast to other organisms, gonococci do not respond with increased polyphosphate synthesis when shifted from phosphate starvation to a phosphate-rich medium. In addition, gonococcal polyphosphate does not serve as a depletable phosphate source during phosphate starvation. All strains of Neisseriae examined produce substantial amounts of polyphosphate.

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