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berry-shaped bacteria; diameter, 1–2 microns. Cocci are nonmotile and gram-positive, form no spores, and reproduce by transverse division.
Classified as cocci are Micrococci, Streptococci, Staphylococci, and Sarcina. On solid nutrient media cocci form round, smooth convex colonies (gray, white, yellow, or red). Cocci are widely distributed in nature, living in soil, air, and food products. Lactic-acid streptococci are used in making sour cream, butter, and clabbers. Pathogenic streptococci and staphylococci produce inflammatory processes and purulent diseases—for example, furunculosis, erysipelas, and angina.