, Volume 161, Issue 4, pp 345-351

Clostridium autoethanogenum, sp. nov., an anaerobic bacterium that produces ethanol from carbon monoxide

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A strictly anaerobic, gram-positive, sporeforming, rod-like, motile bacterium was enriched from rabbit feces, and isolated using carbon monoxide as sole source of energy and carbon. The isolate metabolizes CO with ethanol, acetate and CO2 as end-products. Other substrates used as carbon and energy sources include CO2 plus H2, pyruvate, xylose, arabinose, fructose, rhamnose, and l-glutamate. The optimum temperature for growth is 37°C. The optimum pH for chemolithotrophic growth lies around 5.8 to 6.0 Sulfate is not reduced. Growth is inhibited either by penicillin, chloramphenicol, tetracyclin or ampicillin, each at 100 μg per ml. The isolate has a DNA-base composition of 25.9±0.6% guanine plus cytosine. The isolate represents a new species of Clostridium for which the name Clostridium autoethanogenum is proposed. The type strain is strain JA1-1