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Int J Syst Evol Microbiol. 2003 Jul;53(Pt 4):965-70.

Eubacterium pyruvativorans sp. nov., a novel non-saccharolytic anaerobe from the rumen that ferments pyruvate and amino acids, forms caproate and utilizes acetate and propionate.

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Rowett Research Institute, Bucksburn, Aberdeen AB21 9SB, UK.


Two similar gram-positive rods were isolated from 10(-6) dilutions of ruminal fluid from a sheep receiving a mixed grass hay/concentrate diet, using a medium containing pancreatic casein hydrolysate as sole source of carbon and energy. The isolates did not ferment sugars, but grew on pyruvate or trypticase, forming caproate as the main fermentation product and valerate to a lesser extent. Acetate and propionate were utilized. One of these strains, I-6T, was selected for further study. Strain I-6T was a non-motile coccal rod, 1.2 x 0.4 microm, with a gram-positive cell wall ultrastructure and a G + C content of 56.8 mol%. No spores were visible, and strain I-6T did not survive heating at 80 degrees C for 10 min. Its rate of NH3 production was 375 nmol (mg protein)(-1) min(-1), placing it in the 'ammonia-hyperproducing' (or HAP) group of ruminal bacteria. 16S rDNA sequence analysis (1296 bases) indicated that it represents a novel species within the 'low-G + C' gram-positive group, for which the name Eubacterium pyruvativorans sp. nov. is proposed. Among cultivated bacteria, strain I-6T was most closely related (89% identity) to other asaccharolytic Eubacterium isolates from the mouth and the rumen. It was 98% identical to uncultured bacterial sequences amplified by others from ruminal digesta.

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