The Prokaryotes

pp 3785-3805

The Genus Herpetosiphon

  • Hans Reichenbach

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The Herpetosiphon species are aerobic, chemoorganotrophic, filamentous bacteria that are Gram-negative but do not have a typical Gram-negative cell wall. The filaments are very long, unbranched, and multicellular, between 0.6 and 1.5 μm wide and usually 300 to more than 1200 pm long (Fig. 1). Short transparent sections (“sleeves”: Fig. 2) are seen at the ends of many filaments. These sleeves are characteristic of Herpetosiphon, and they make it possible to recognize the organism easily under the microscope.