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Int J Syst Bacteriol. 1996 Jan;46(1):206-15.

Serpulina pilosicoli sp. nov., the agent of porcine intestinal spirochetosis.

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School of Veterinary Studies, Murdoch University, Western Australia, Australia.


Phenotypic and genetic traits of porcine intestinal spirochete strain P43/6/78T (= ATCC 51139T) (T = type strain), which is pathogenic and weakly beta-hemolytic, were determined in order to confirm the taxonomic position of this organism and its relationships to previously described species of intestinal spirochetes. In BHIS broth, P43/6/78T cells had a doubling time of 1 to 2 h and grew to a maximum cell density of 2 x 10(9) cells per ml at 37 to 42 degrees C. They hydrolyzed hippurate, utilized D-glucose, D-fructose, sucrose, D-trehalose, D-galactose, D-mannose, maltose, N-acetyl-D-glucosamine, D-glucosamine, pyruvate, L-fucose, D-cellobiose, and D-ribose as growth substrates, and produced acetate, butyrate, ethanol, H2, and CO2 as metabolic products. They consumed substrate amounts of oxygen and had a G+C content (24.6 mol%) similar to that of Serpulina hyodysenteriae B78T (25.9 mol%). Phenotypic traits that could be used to distinguish strain P43/6/78T from S. hyodysenteriae and Serpulina innocens included its ultrastructural appearance (each strain P43/6/78T cell had 8 or 10 periplasmic flagella, with 4 or 5 flagella inserted at each end, and the cells were thinner and shorter and had more pointed ends than S. hyodysenteriae and S. innocens cells), its faster growth rate in liquid media, its hydrolysis of hippurate, its lack of beta-glucosidase activity, and its metabolism of D-ribose. DNA-DNA relative reassociation experiments in which the S1 nuclease method was used revealed that P43/6/78T was related to, but was genetically distinct from, both S. hyodysenteriae B78T (level of sequence homology, 25 to 32%) and S. innocens B256T (level of sequence homology, 24 to 25%). These and previous results indicate that intestinal spirochete strain P43/6/78T represents a distinct Serpulina species. Therefore, we propose that strain P43/6/78 should be designated as the type strain of a new species, Serpulina pilosicoli.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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