Archives of Microbiology

, Volume 155, Issue 4, pp 330–336 | Cite as

Rhodoferax fermentans gen. nov., sp. nov., a phototrophic purple nonsulfur bacterium previously referred to as the “Rhodocyclus gelatinosus-like” group

  • Akira Hiraishi
  • Yasuo Hoshino
  • Toshio Satoh
Original Papers


Strains of the phototrophic bacteria previously referred to as the “rhodocyclus gelatinosus-like (RGL)” group were taxonomically studied in comparison with Rhodocyclus species. Cells of the RGL strains were curved rods and motile by means of polar flagella. They contained bacteriochlorophyll a and carotenoids of the spheroidene series. The intracytoplasmic membrane system was absent. Photoorganotropho with various organic compounds as carbon sources was the preferred mode of growth. Aerobic growth at full atmospheric oxygen tension and fermentative growth under anaerobic-dark conditions were also possible. The major cellular fatty acids were palmitoleic acid and palmitic acid, and 3-hydroxylated fatty acids with octanoic acid predominating were also found. Both ubiquinone-8 and rhodoquinone-8 occurred as major quinones. The mol% guanine plus cytosine of the DNAs varied between 59.8 and 60.3. DNA-DNA hybridization studies showed that the RGL strains were highly related to each other but exhibited low levels of the homology to Rhodocyclus species. These data allow the establishment of the RGL group as a new taxon of the purple nonsulfur bacteria, for which the name Rhodoferax fermentans gen. nov., sp. nov. is proposed.

Key words

Rhodoferax fermentans Phototrophic bacteria Purple nonsulfur bacteria Taxonomy 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Ezaki T, Dejsirilert S, Yamamoto H, Takeuchi N, Liu S, Yabuuchi E (1988) Simple and rapid genetic identification of Legionella species with photobiotin-labeled DNA. J Gen Appl Microbiol 34: 191–199Google Scholar
  2. Gürgün V, Kirchner G, Pfennig N (1976) Vergärung von Pyruvat durch sieben Arten phototropher Purpurbakterien. Z Allg Mikrobiol 16: 573–586Google Scholar
  3. Hiraishi A (1988a) Fumarate reduction systems in members of the family Rhodospirillaceae with different quinone types. Arch Microbiol 150: 56–60Google Scholar
  4. Hiraishi A (1988b) Bicarbonate-stimulated dark fermentative growth of a phototrophic purple nonsulfur bacterium. FEMS Microbiol Lett 56: 199–202Google Scholar
  5. Hiraishi A, Hoshino Y (1984) Distribution of rhodoquinone in Rhodospirillaceae and its taxonomic implications. J Gen Appl Microbiol 30: 435–448Google Scholar
  6. Hiraishi A, Kitamura H (1984) Distribution of phototrophic purple nonsulfur bacteria in activated sludge systems and other aquatic environments. Bull Jpn Soc Sci Fish 50: 1929–1937Google Scholar
  7. Hiraishi A, Hoshino Y, Kitamura H (1984) Isoprenoid quinone composition in the classification of Rhodospirillaceae. J Gen Appl Microbiol 30: 197–210Google Scholar
  8. Hoshino Y, Satoh T (1985) Dependence on calcium ions of gelatin hydrolysis by Rhodopseudomonas capsulata but not Rhodopseudomonas gelatinosa. Agric Biol Chem 49. 331–3332Google Scholar
  9. Imhoff JF (1984) Quinones of phototrophic purple bacteria. FEMS Microbiol Lett 25: 85–89Google Scholar
  10. Imhoff JF, Trüper HG (1989a) Purple nonsulfur bacteria (Rhodospirillaceae Pfennig and Trüper 1971). In: Staley JT, Bryant MP, Pfennig N, Holt JG (eds), Bergey's manual of systematic bacteriology, vol 3. Williams and Wilkins, Baltimore, pp 1658–1662Google Scholar
  11. Imhoff JF, Trüper HG (1989b) Genus Rhodocyclus Pfennig 1978. In: Staley JT, Bryant MP, Pfennig N, Holt JG (eds) Bergey's manual of systematic bacteriology, vol 3. Williams and Wilkins, Baltimore, pp 1678–1682Google Scholar
  12. Imhoff JF, Trüper HG, Pfennig N (1984) Rearrangement of the species and genera of the phototrophic “purple nonsulfur bacteria”. Int J Syst Bacteriol 34: 340–343Google Scholar
  13. Jantzen E, Bryn K (1985) Whole-cell and lipopolysaccharide fatty acids and sugars of Gram-negative bacteria. In: Goodfellow M, Minnikin DE (eds) Chemical methods in bacterial systematics. Academic Press, London, pp 145–171Google Scholar
  14. Katayama-Fujimura Y, Komatsu Y, Kuraishi H, Kaneko T (1984) Estimation of DNA base composition by high performance liquid chromatography of its nuclease P1 hydrolysate. Agric Biol Chem 48: 3169–3172Google Scholar
  15. Liaaen-Jensen S, Jensen A (1963) Quantitative determination of carotenoids in photosynthetic tissues. Methods Enzymol 23: 586–602Google Scholar
  16. Marmur J (1961) A procedure for the isolation of deoxyribonucleic acid from microorganisms. J Mol Biol 3: 208–218Google Scholar
  17. Schultz JE, Weaver PF (1982) Fermentation and anaerobic respiration by Rhodospirillum rubrum and Rhodopseudomonas capsulata. J Bacteriol 149: 181–190Google Scholar
  18. Uffen RL (1978) Fermentative metabolism and growth of photosynthetic bacteria. In: Clayton RK, Sistrom WR (eds) The photosynthetic bacteria. Plenum Press, New York, pp 857–872Google Scholar
  19. Uffen RL, Wolfe RS (1971) Anaerobic growth of purple nonsulfur bacteria under dark conditions. J Bacteriol 104: 462–472Google Scholar
  20. Weckesser J, Mayer H (1987) Different lipid A types in lipopolysaccharides of phototrophic and related non-phototrophic bacteria. FEMS Microbiol Rev 54: 143–154Google Scholar
  21. Weckesser J, Drews G, Tauschel H-D (1969) Zur Feinstruktur und Taxonomie von Rhodopseudomonas gelatinosa. Arch Mikrobiol 65: 346–358Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Akira Hiraishi
    • 1
    • 2
  • Yasuo Hoshino
    • 1
  • Toshio Satoh
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Biology, Faculty of scienceTokyo Metropolitan UniversityTokyoJapan
  2. 2.Tokyo research LaboratoryKonishi Co. Ltd.TokyoJapan
  3. 3.Botanical Institute, Faculty of ScienceHiroshima UniversityHigashi-senda-machi, HiroshimaJapan

Personalised recommendations