Spirochaeta odontotermitis sp. nov., an obligately anaerobic, cellulolytic, halotolerant, alkaliphilic spirochaete isolated from the termite Odontotermes obesus (Rambur) gut.


A Gram-stain-negative spirochaete (strain JC202T) was isolated from the gut of the termite Odontotermes obesus (Rambur) from Rann of Kutch, Gujarat, India. This strain was obligately anaerobic, mesophilic, halotolerant and required alkaline conditions for growth. Strain JC202T was resistant to rifampicin and kanamycin, but sensitive to gentamicin, tetracycline, ampicillin and chloramphenicol. Strain JC202T possessed phosphatidylglycerol, diphosphatidylglycerol, glycolipid and six unidentified lipids. C18 : 1ω7c was the predominant cellular fatty acid with significant proportions of C16 : 0, C18 : 1ω9c, C14 : 0, C18 : 0, C16 : 1ω5c, C18 : 1ω5c and C20 : 1ω9c. The DNA G+C content of strain JC202T was 59 mol%. Based on 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis, strain JC202T is considered to belong to the genus Spirochaeta with Spirochaeta sphaeroplastigenens JC133T (100 % similarity), Spirochaeta alkalica Z-7491T (99.92 %), Spirochaeta americana ATCC BAA-392T (99.47 %) and other members of the genus Spirochaeta ( < 93.83 %) as the closest phylogenetic neighbours. However, mean DNA-DNA hydridization values between strain JC202T and S. sphaeroplastigenens JC133T, S. alkalica DSM 8900T ( = Z-7491T) and S. americana DSM 14872T ( = ASpG1T) were 55 ± 2, 22 ± 3 and 32 ± 1 %, respectively. On the basis of physiological, biochemical, chemotaxonomic (including metabolome) and genomic differences from the previously described taxa, strain JC202T is differentiated from other members of the genus Spirochaeta and is considered to represent a novel species, for which the name Spirochaeta odontotermitis sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is JC202T ( = KCTC 15324T = NBRC 110104T).


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