A number of bacterial antigens have been identified in cultures of group A streptococci. These extracellular products are primarily enzymatic proteins and include streptolysin O, streptokinase, hyaluronidase, deoxyribonucleases (DNases A, B, C, and D), and nicotinamide adenine nucleotidase. Infections by the group A streptococci are unique because they can be followed by the serious nonpurulent complications of rheumatic fever and glomerulonephritis. Recent information suggests that rheumatic fever is associated with infection by certain rheumatogenic serotypes (M1, M3, M5, M6, M18, and M19), while glomerulonephritis follows infection by nephritogenic serotypes (M2, M12, M49, M57, M59, and M60). Glomerulonephritis and rheumatic fever occur following the infection, after a period of latency following the infection, during which the patient is asymptomatic. The latency period for glomerulonephritis is approximately 10 days, and for rheumatic fever the latency period is 20 days.