Archives of Microbiology

, Volume 147, Issue 1, pp 13–20 | Cite as

Isolation and characterization of Methanocorpusculum parvum, gen. nov., spec. nov., a new tungsten requiring, coccoid methanogen

  • G. Zellner
  • C. Alten
  • E. Stackebrandt
  • E. Conway de Macario
  • J. Winter
Original Papers


A new mesophilic, monotrichously flagellated methane-producing coccus of ≦1μm in diameter was isolated from an anaerobic sour whey digester, originally inoculated with sewage sludge. Growth and methane production were observed with H2/CO2, formate and — less effectively — with 2-propanol/CO2. The isolate grew at temperatures between 15° C and 45° C with the optimum at around 37° C. Acetate, yeast extract and tungstate were required in the medium. Clarified rumen fluid stimulated growth.

The DNA of the new methanogen has a G+C content of 48.5 mol%. Comparative 16 S rRNA oligonucleotide cataloguing allows to define the new isolate as a member of a new genus of the order Methanomicrobiales. Further evidence for this is provided by the antigenic crossreactivity with anti-S probes and by metabolic features.

Because of its small size the new methanogen is named Methanocorpusculum parvum.

Key words

Archaebacteria Methanogens Methanocorpusculum parvum Taxonomy 16 S rRNA Serological probes Physiology Tungsten Cofactors Cytochrome 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. Zellner
    • 1
  • C. Alten
    • 2
  • E. Stackebrandt
    • 2
  • E. Conway de Macario
    • 3
  • J. Winter
    • 1
  1. 1.Lehrstuhl für MikrobiologieUniversität RegensburgRegensburgGermany
  2. 2.Institut für Allgemeine MikrobiologieChristian-Albrechts-UniversitätKielGermany
  3. 3.Wadsworth Center for Laboratories and ResearchNew York State Department of HealthAlbanyUSA

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