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Reference Phylogenetic analysis identifies the 'megabacterium' of birds as a novel anamorphic ascomycetous yeast, Macrorhabdus ornithogaster gen. nov., sp. nov. Tomaszewski EK, Logan KS, Snowden KF, Kurtzman CP, Phalen DN. International journal of systematic and evolutionary microbiology. 2003.
Abstract An organism commonly referred to as 'megabacterium' colonizes the gastric isthmus of many species of birds. It is weakly gram-positive and periodic acid-Schiff-positive and stains with silver stains. Previous studies have shown that it has a nucleus and a cell wall similar to those seen in fungi. Calcofluor white M2R staining suggests that the cell wall contains chitin, a eukaryote-specific substance, and rRNA in situ hybridization demonstrates that it is a eukaryote. To characterize this organism phylogenetically, DNA was extracted from purified cells. rDNA was readily amplified by PCR with pan-fungal DNA primer sets and primer sets derived from the newly determined sequence, but not with bacteria-specific primer sets. Specific primer sets amplified rDNA from isthmus scrapings from an infected bird, but not from a non-infected bird or other control DNA. The sequence was confirmed to derive from the purified organism by in situ rRNA hybridization using a specific probe. Phylogenetic analysis of sequences of the 18S rDNA and domain D1/D2 of 26S rDNA showed the organism to be a previously undescribed anamorphic ascomycetous yeast representing a new genus. The name Macrorhabdus ornithogaster gen. nov., sp. nov. is proposed for this organism. The type material is CBS 9251T (= NRRL Y-27487T).
Pubmed ID 12892150
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