A total of 22 strains of curved, anaerobic bacteria from the vaginae of women with bacterial vaginosis were found to be morphologically, biochemically, and genetically distinct from species in previously described genera. We placed these organisms in the genus gen. nov., which includes curved, anaerobic, motile, rod-shaped bacteria that have multiple subpolar flagella and multilayered gram-variable cell walls, produce succinate and acetate, are stimulated by rabbit serum, and have guanine-plus-cytosine contents of 49 to 52 mol%. is the type species (type strain, ATCC 35241). strains are small (length, 1.7 μm) and gram variable, are stimulated by arginine, and produce ornithine, citrulline, and ammonia from arginine. Six of these strains migrate through soft (0.25%) agar and are nitrate negative, and these organisms are designated subsp. . Six strains that do not migrate through soft agar and are nitrate positive are designated subsp. (type strain, ATCC 35242). A total of 10 strains are designated (type strain, ATCC 35243). These organisms are large (length, 2.9 μm) and gram negative, produce acid (pH <5.5) from glycogen, and are CAMP test positive. The levels of deoxyribonucleic acid homology were >75% within and ≤25% between strains of the two species.


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