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CDC Anaerobic Blood Agar (CDC or CABA)

CDC Anaerobic Blood Agar (referred to as CDC or CABA) is an enriched medium for the growth and partial identification of obligate anaerobes.  It also supports good growth of aerobic, facultative anaerobic and microaerophilic organisms found in clinical materials if incubated under the appropriate conditions.  CDC Anaerobic Blood Agar is a tryptic soy agar base supplemented with vitamin K1 and hemin to facilitate the recovery of more fastidious organisms, such as Prevotella, Porphyromonas, and the Bacteroides fragilis group, and should facilitate pigment production of Prevotella melaninogenica. Sheep blood is added for the observation of hemolytic reactions as seen by the double zone beta – hemoylsis of Clostridium perfringens. This medium is prepared, dispensed and packaged under oxygen-free conditions to prevent the formation of oxidized products prior to use.

               Anaerobe Systems PRAS CDC
           Anaerobic Blood Agar AS-646

View the full product insertCDC Anaerobic Blood Agar Insert.pdf

CDC Anaerobic Blood Agar Products

 Item #





 CDC Anaerobic Blood Agar plate

 4 plates




Tryptic Soy Agar, 40.0 g

Yeast Extract, 5.0 g

L-Cystine, 0.4 g

Hemin (0.1% Soln), 5.0 ml

Vitamin K1 (1% Soln), 1.0 ml

Sheep Blood, 50.0 ml

Distilled Water, 1000.0 ml


Final pH 7.3 +/- 0.2 at 25 degrees C.

Final weight 16.0 g +/- 1.6.



For IN VITRO DIAGNOSTIC USE only.  Approved biohazard precautions and aseptic techniques should be observed when using this product.  This product is for use only by properly-trained and qualified personnel.  Sterilize all biohazard waste prior to disposal.


Storage and Shelf Life

Storage:  Upon receipt, store at room temperature (13°C - 27°C) in original container until use.  Avoid overheating or freezing.  Do not use medium if there are signs of deterioration (shrinking, cracking or discoloration due to oxidation of media) or contamination.  The expiration date applies to the product in its original packaging and stored as directed.  Do not use product past the expiration date shown on the container.

Shelf Life:  90 days from date of manufacture.



Specimen Collection:  Specimens for anaerobic culture should be protected from air (oxygen) during collection, transport and processing.  Consult appropriate references for detailed instructions concerning collection and transport of anaerobes.

Methods for Use:  CDC Anaerobic Blood should be inoculated directly with clinical material or a broth that has been previously inoculated from clinical material.  Inoculated plates should be streaked to obtain isolated colonies, immediately placed in an anaerobic atmosphere and incubated at 35-37oC for 18 – 48 hours.  Additional periods of incubation may be necessary to recover some anaerobes.  Detailed instructions for processing anaerobic cultures can be found in the appropriate references.

Materials Required But Not Provided

Standard microbiological supplies and equipment such as loops, saline blanks, slides, staining supplies, microscope, incinerator or autoclave, incubators, anaerobic chamber or anaerobic jars, disinfectant, other culture media and serological and biochemical reagents.



CDC Anaerobic Blood will not provide complete information for identification of bacterial isolates.  Additional test procedures and media are required for complete identification.  It is recommended that a selective medium such as Anaerobic Brucella Laked Blood Agar with Kanaymcin and Vancomycin (LKV) and/or Anaerobic Brucella Blood Agar with Phenylethyl Alcohol (PEA) also be inoculated from clinical specimens to assure growth of all species present.  Consult reference materials for additional information.


Quality Control

This medium should support the growth of obligate anaerobes found in clinical infections.  In addition, the medium should support typical pigment production by pigmented Prevotella and Porphyromonas spp.  It also should support typical double zone of hemolysis around colonies of Clostridium perfringens.

The following organisms are routinely used for quality assurance performance testing at Anaerobe Systems. 

Organism Tested



Time (Hours)

Special Reaction

Bacteroides fragilis **



24 h


Prevotella melaninogenica **



24-48 h

Pigmentt(tan to brown)

Fusobacterium necrophorum



24 h


Fusobacterium nucleatum **



24-48 h


Clostridium perfringens **



24 h

Double zone hemolysis

Peptostreptococcus anaerobius **



24 h


Staphylococcus aureus     or              Enterococcus faecalis

25923       29212



24 h

24 h


Escherichia coli



24 h


Proteus mirabilis



24 h


Clostridium difficile    or              Propionibacterium acnes

9689       6919



24 h

24-48 h


         ** Organisms specified by NCCLS for Quality Control testing for Anaerobic Blood Agars

        t Pigment production may require more than 48 hours of incubation.

User Quality Control: The final determination to the extent and quantity of user laboratory quality control must be determined by the end user.

If sterility testing is to be performed on this product, the appropriate percentage of the original shipment amount should be incubated anaerobically and aerobically for 48 – 96 hours.

If the nutritive capacity of this media is to be tested for performance, it is recommended that the following ATCC organisms be evaluated for growth.



Expected Growth

Special Reactions

B. fragilis

24 hrs


P. melaninogenica

48 hrs


F. nucleatum

24 hrs


C. perfringens

24 hrs

Double zone hemolysis

P. anaerobius

24 hrs



Physical Appearance:  CDC Anaerobic Blood Agar should appear opaque burgundy red in color.



1.        Dowell, V. R., Jr. and T. M. Hawkins.  1974Laboratory Methods in Anaerobic Bacteriology.  CDC Laboratory ManualUSDHEW C. D. C. Atlanta, GA 30333.


2.        Dowell, V. R. Jr. and G. L. Lombard.  1977Presumptive Identification of Anaerobic Non-sporeforming Gram-negative BacilliUSDHEW, CDC, Atlanta, GA 30333.


3.   Dowell, V. R., Jr., G. L. Lombard, F. S. Thompson and A. Y. Armfield.  1977Media for the Isolation Characterization and Identification of Obligately Anaerobic BacteriaUSDHEW, CDC, Atlanta, GA 30333.


4.        Engelkirk, P. G., Duben-Engelkirk, J. and Dowell, V. R.  1992Principles and Practices of Clinical Anaerobic BacteriologyStar Publishing Co., Belmont, CA 94002.


5.        Jousimeie-Somer, L. V. , Summanen, P. Citron, D. M., Baron, E. J., Wexler, H. M. and S. M. Finegold.  2002Wadsworth – KTL Anaerobic Bacteriology ManualStar Publishing Co., Belmont, CA 94002.


6.        NCCLS.  Quality Control for Commercially Prepared Microbiological Culture Media; Approved Standard- Third Edition.  (2004).  NCCLS document M22-A3.  NCCLS, 940 West Valley Road, Suite 1400, Wayne, PA 19087-1898.