Modestobacter versicolor sp. nov., an actinobacterium from biological soil crusts that produces melanins under oligotrophy, with emended descriptions of the genus Modestobacter and Modestobacter multiseptatus Mevs et al. 2000

Gundlapally S N Reddy, Ruth M. Potrafka, Ferran Garcia-Pichel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

31 Scopus citations

Abstract

A novel isolate, CP153-2T, was obtained from topsoil biological crusts in the Colorado Plateau (USA). Colonies were black in colour due to melanin-like pigments when grown on oligotrophic medium, but not when grown on copiotrophic medium. Induction of melanogenesis was independent of growth phase or illumination conditions, including exposure to UVB and UVA radiation, but exposure to UVB could enhance total pigment production and growth under low nitrogen prevented its synthesis. This mode of regulation was previously unknown among melanin-producing bacteria. Polyphasic characterization of the strain revealed that cells were short, straight to curved or irregular rods that developed into pairs and formed multiseptate short filaments, with rare bud-like cells. Short rods were typically motile by means of flagella; multicellular structures tended to be sessile. Cells stained Gram-positive, grew at 4-30 °C and had a narrow range of pH tolerance (pH 5-9). The major fatty acids were iso-C15:0 iso-C16:0, anteiso-C15:0 and C18:1; MK-9(H4) was the major respiratory quinone. Its peptidoglycan contained meso-diaminopimelic acid. Based on 16S rRNA gene sequence similarity data, its closest relative (98.1% similarity) was Modestobacter multiseptatus DSM 44406T, which is similar morphologically. Based on the above characteristics, strain CP153-2T was also assigned to the qenus Modestobacter. However, CP153-2T had a relatedness of only 49.9% in whole-genome reassociation comparisons with the type strain of M. multiseptatus and thus formally represents a novel species, for which the name Modestobacter versicolor sp. nov. is proposed. Additional evidence in support of a novel species comes from phenotypic and chemotaxonomic characteristics. Strain CP153-2T (=ATCC BAA-1040T =DSM 16678T) is the type strain of M. versicolor.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2014-2020
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology
Volume57
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

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