Measurement of the Cell-Body Rotation of Leptospira

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Leptospira spp. swim in liquid and crawl on surfaces with two periplasmic flagella. The periplasmic flagella attach to the protoplasmic cylinder via basal rotary motors (flagellar motors) and transform the ends of the cell body into spiral or hook shape. The rotations of the periplasmic flagella are thought to gyrate the cell body and rotate the protoplasmic cylinder for propelling the cell; however, the motility mechanism has not been fully elucidated. Since the motility is a critical virulence factor for pathogenic leptospires, the kinematic insight is valuable to understand the mechanism of infection. This chapter describes microscopic methodologies to measure the motility of Leptospira, focusing on rotation of the helical cell body.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMethods in Molecular Biology
PublisherHumana Press Inc.
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Publication series

NameMethods in Molecular Biology
ISSN (Print)1064-3745
ISSN (Electronic)1940-6029


  • Bead assay
  • Cell-body rotation
  • Image analysis
  • Leptospira
  • Motility
  • Rotation speed


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