A numerical analysis of 369 strains received as members of the genus (formerly ), , or was carried out using 88 characters. Of the strains tested, 345 mycobacteria, rhodococci, and nocardiae formed four distinct clusters at a similarity level of 85%. The first cluster was composed of slowly growing mycobacteria; the second cluster, of strains of and ; the third cluster, of strains of rapidly growing mycobacteria; and the fourth cluster, of strains of and . Strains of three species of rapidly growing mycobacteria, , and , were located outside of these clusters. The fourth cluster could be divided into three subclusters, one consisting of rhodococci plus some strains of , a second consisting of the remaining strains of , and a third consisting of strains of () and .


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