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Int J Syst Bacteriol. 1997 Jul;47(3):627-34.

Helicobacter rodentium sp. nov., a urease-negative Helicobacter species isolated from laboratory mice.

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Division of Comparative Medicine, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge 02139, USA.


A spiral-shaped bacterium with bipolar, single, nonsheathed flagella was isolated from the intestines of laboratory mice. The organism grew at 37 and 42 degrees C under microaerobic and anaerobic conditions, did not hydrolyze urea, was weakly positive for catalase and oxidase, reduced nitrate to nitrite, did not hydrolyze indoxyl acetate or hippurate, and was resistant to cephalothin and nalidixic acid. This is the first urease-negative, murine Helicobacter spp. isolated from intestines. Also, Helicobacter pullorum and this bacterium are unique among the genus Helicobacter in having nonsheathed flagella. The new bacterium appears to be part of the normal intestinal flora; although its pathogenic potential is unknown, this organism was also isolated from scid mice with diarrhea that were co-infected with Helicobacter bilis. On the basis of 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis data and biochemical and phenotypic criteria, the new organism is classified as a novel helicobacter, for which we propose the name Helicobacter rodentium. The type strain is MIT 95-1707 (= ATCC 700285).

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