Whitley Microaerobic Workstations are designed for isolation, culture, and manipulation of microaerophiles, which are microorganisms that require oxygen to survive, but less than that present in atmospheric air . Since these microaerophiles struggle to grow at ambient oxygen levels and in anaerobic conditions, microaerobic workstations are ideal as they allow easy manipulation of oxygen levels to optimise growth .
Helicobacter pylori is one of the many microorganisms that has been successfully grown and isolated in a Whitley Microaerobic Workstation. H. pylori is a Gram-negative rod that resides in the stomach of approximately 50% of people . For most people, H. pylori is a harmless commensal, but in some cases, the bacteria can travel to and damage the columnar epithelial cells of the stomach leading to gastric and peptic ulcer disease . This is characterised by abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting and indigestion . If damage continues to a detrimental level, then this can progress to stomach ulcers and even stomach cancer, meaning that this is an incredibly important bacteria to study . Optimum conditions for H. pylori growth can be provided with a microaerobic workstation which operates from four separate gases. Optimum growth temperature for H. pylori is 37oC in an atmosphere of 2-5% O2 with an additional need for 5-10% CO2 ,. Recovery and growth rate of many H. pylori strains is further enhanced by the presence of 2-3% H2  . High humidity is also necessary; this can be provided by a Whitley microaerobic workstation and automatic humidification is an optional accessory . Whitley microaerobic workstations provide precise control of all the environmental parameters critical for H. pylori growth.
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