Streptomyces:Protocols/How to Streak Streptomyces

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Protocols - Streaking

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How to Streak Streptomyces

Streptomyces coelicolor grows best on the media SFM (Soya Flour Mannitol), for the recipe see the Practical Streptomyces Genetics book [1]. Slightly thicker plates are needed when inoculating Streptomyces as they take longer to grow than other general laboratory bacteria, ~4-5 days. This is partially due to it having a more complex life cycle (germination → vegetative growth → aerial growth → sporulation) and its preferred incubation temperature is 28-30ºC.

Selecting a Colony and Collecting Spores
Normally Streptomyces is streaked from a single, isolated colony, however; the same can also apply when streaking from a spore stock. In a laminar flow hood or other sterile conditions; use the wide flat end of a sterile toothpick to scrape the grey/brown spores from a single Streptomyces colony, being careful not to touch other colonies or dig into the agar. For best results, the spores are then used for inoculation by one of the following methods.

Streaking for Single Colonies

Figure 1. Streaking for Single Colonies

Streaking for Confluent Growth

Figure 2. Streaking for Confluent Growth


  1. ISBN:0708406238 [Kieser-PracticalStreptomycesGenetics-2000]
  2. Kieser, T., Bibb, M.J., Buttner, M.J., Chater, K.F. & Hopwood, D.A., (2000). Practical Streptomyces Genetics. Norwich, UK: John Innes Foundation. Click Here for more Information