Sulfur Reduction Test- Principle, Procedure, Results, Uses


The sulfur reduction test is a microbiological test that can be used to identify and differentiate bacteria based on their ability to reduce sulfur to hydrogen sulfide (H2S). The test is especially useful for distinguishing members of the family Enterobacteriaceae, which includes many medically important pathogens such as Salmonella, Shigella, Escherichia, and Proteus. Some of these bacteria can reduce sulfur to H2S as part of their metabolic processes, while others cannot. The test can also help to differentiate some other genera of bacteria, such as Citrobacter, Klebsiella, and Yersinia, from closely related organisms.

The main objectives of the sulfur reduction test are:

  • To determine the ability of the organism to reduce sulfur for the production of hydrogen sulfide.
  • To differentiate members of Enterobacteriaceae, especially the sulfur-reducing Salmonella and Proteus from the non-reducing Morganella morganii and Providencia rettgeri.
  • To provide additional information for the identification and classification of bacteria based on their biochemical characteristics.