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Microbiologyopen. 2014 Aug;3(4):578-84. doi: 10.1002/mbo3.189. Epub 2014 Jul 1.

Crystalliferous Bacillus cereus group bacteria from a Maryland hardwood forest are dominated by psychrotolerant strains.

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  • 1Invasive Insect Biocontrol and Behavior Laboratory, USDA/ARS, Beltsville, Maryland, 20705.


Crystal-forming bacteria of the Bacillus cereus group were isolated from soil samples collected at different elevations within a mixed hardwood forest in central Maryland, and their phylogenetic relationships determined by multilocus sequence analysis. The vast majority of isolates obtained were associated with two phylogenetic groups known to be psychrotolerant, with very few isolates representing phylogenetic groups more typically associated with Bacillus thuringiensis. Isolates from the psychrotolerant groups were found to grow on solid media at 7 °C. Isolates of 11 highly related, novel sequence types (STs) from the psychrotolerant group that includes Bacillus weihenstephanensis were generally found at higher elevations, and were not associated with soils near streams. Isolates of two related STs from the second psychrotolerant group were nearly always found at the bottoms of ravines near streams, in areas abundant in earthworm castings.

Published 2014. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA. MicrobiologyOpen published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


Bacillus cereus; Bacillus thuringiensis; Bacillus weihenstephanensis; multilocus sequence analysis; psychrotolerance

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