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J Appl Microbiol. 2002;92(1):32-40.

Aerobic and facultatively anaerobic cellulolytic bacteria from the gut of the termite Zootermopsis angusticollis.

Author information

1
Institut für Mikrobiologie und Weinforschung, Johannes Gutenberg-Universität, Mainz, Germany.

Abstract

AIMS:

To demonstrate the occurrence of cellulolytic bacteria in the termite Zootermopsis angusticollis.

METHODS AND RESULTS:

Applying aerobic cultivation conditions we isolated 119 cellulolytic strains from the gut of Z. angusticollis, which were assigned to 23 groups of aerobic, facultatively anaerobic or microaerophilic cellulolytic bacteria. 16S rDNA restriction fragment pattern and partial 16S rDNA sequence analysis, as well as numerical taxonomy, were used for the assignment of the isolates. The Gram-positive bacteria of the actinomycetes branch could be assigned to the order Actinomycetales including the genera Cellulomonas/Oerskovia, Microbacterium and Kocuria. The Gram-positive bacteria from the order Bacillales belonged to the genera Bacillus, Brevibacillus and Paenibacillus. Isolates related to the genera Afipia, Agrobacterium/Rhizobium, Brucella/Ochrobactrum, Pseudomonas and Sphingomonas/Zymomonas from the alpha-proteobacteria and Spirosoma-like from the "Flexibacteriaceae" represented the Gram-negative bacteria.

CONCLUSIONS:

A cell titre of up to 10(7) cellulolytic bacteria per ml, determined for some isolates, indicated that they may play a role in cellulose digestion in the termite gut in addition to the cellulolytic flagellates and termite's own cellulases.

SIGNIFICANCE AND IMPACT OF THE STUDY:

The impact of bacteria on cellulose degradation in the termite gut has always been a matter of debate. In the present survey we investigated the aerobic and facultatively anaerobic cellulolytic bacteria in the termite gut.

PMID:
11849325
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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