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Syst Appl Microbiol. 2008 Aug;31(3):215-22. doi: 10.1016/j.syapm.2008.04.001. Epub 2008 May 15.

Diversity of Vibrios associated with reared clams in Galicia (NW Spain).

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Departamento de Microbiología y Parasitología, Facultad de Biología e Instituto de Acuicultura, Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, Santiago de Compostela, Spain.


The aim of the present study was to characterize and identify vibrios isolated from cultured clams in Galicia (NW Spain). A total of 759 isolates were obtained, phenotypically characterized, grouped and assigned to the genus Vibrio. Subsequently, the genomic diversity of 145 representative strains was analyzed by means of amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP), which revealed a high genetic diversity amongst these isolates. Only 57 out of 145 strains could be identified to the species level, and they were distributed in 13 AFLP clusters. V. cyclitrophicus, V. splendidus and V. alginolyticus were the most abundantly represented species. Eighty-eight isolates remained unidentified, 59 were distributed over 16 clusters, while 29 were unclustered. Sequencing of the 16S rRNA and two house-keeping genes (rpoA and recA) from representative strains belonging to eight unidentified clusters with the highest number of isolates confirmed their assignation to the Vibrionaceae family, and some of these probably represent new species within the genus. The present study confirmed that the phenotypic characterization of vibrios is not sufficient to identify them at the species level. A wide diversity of vibrios was found in cultured clams from all four geographic locations analyzed. In total, more than 12 Vibrio species and at least three potential new species in this genus were identified.

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