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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Free-Living Amoeba as Agents of Infection. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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B. mandrillaris cyst

Life Cycle: Balamuthia mandrillaris

There are two stages in the life cycle of B. mandrillaris: the actively feeding trophozoite stage and the spherical cyst stage.
Trophozoites: The trophozoites range from 12-60 µm in length. The trophozoites can have broad, thick pseudopodia for slow movement or be finger-like for spider-like movement (see image below).
Cysts: The cysts range from 12-30 µm in size. They appear to be composed of three layers: a thin, irregular outer layer, a thick inner layer, and a middle layer composed of amorphous material (see image on the right). The cysts have only one nucleus but are frequently seen with two nucleoli.