The organism is widespread in warm natural waters where other microorganisms are present, and where it is taken up and multiplies within amebas in the same way it grows in human macrophages. Legionella pneumophila is considerably more resistant to chlorine than the other Gram-negative bacterial pathogens and survives well in the water systems of buildings, particularly in hot water systems, where chlorine levels are generally low. Legionnaires' disease cases have originated from contaminated aerosols from air conditioner cooling towers, nebulizers, and even from showers and water faucets. Direct person-to-person spread, however, does not occur. Monoclonal antibodies against different L. pneumophila strains help trace the source of epidemics. ■ monoclonal antibodies, p. 427
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