Intracellular survival of Chlamydia psittaci is in part dependent on the ability of the organism to thwart phagolysosome formation. Circumvention of phagolysosome fusion could be either localized to chlamydia-laden vacuoles or generalized to all phagosomes in the host cell. To determine which of these modes is in operation the ability of chlamydia elementary and reticulate bodies to protect Saccharomyces cerevisiae from degradation in macrophage phagolysosomes was examined via acridine orange and Giemsa staining. No statistically significant difference was evident between the amount of fusion observed in coinfected macrophages and those infected with yeast cells alone. This was not dependent on some unique interaction between the chlamydia and the yeast cells since viable count studies to determine the protection of a second organism, Escherichia coli, also failed to show significantly different amounts of inactivation of the bacteria by macrophages in the presence of C. psittaci. Therefore, the inhibition of phagolysosome fusion is localised to chlamydia-laden phagosomes.