Five strains of a gram-negative, oxidase-negative, facultatively anaerobic, fermentative, motile, rod-shaped bacterium with the general characteristics of the family were isolated from tomatoes (three strains), a banana, and a cucumber. All of the strains produced a water-soluble pink pigment. As determined by DNA hybridization (hydroxyapatite method) these five strains were 85 to 100% related in 60 and 75°C reactions, and related sequences exhibited 1% or less base sequence divergence, indicating that the organisms are members of a single species. These bacteria were most closely related to (68 to 72% at 60°C, 42 to 44% at 75°C, 10.5% divergence) and to hybridization group VIII in the (Pantoea agglomerans, ) complex (64% at 60°C, 32% at 75°C, 14.5% divergence). Phenotypic differentiation from , which also produces a water-soluble pink pigment, is based on negative reactions by the new species in tests for methyl red, -acetylglucosamine, DL-tartrate assimilation, and acid production from amygdalin, dulcitol, D-fucose, β-gentiobiose, α-methyl-D-glucoside, glycerol, D-lyxose, melezitose, D-turanose, xylitol, and D-xylose and a positive reaction for acetoin (Voges-Proskauer test). On the basis of these data, the name is proposed for the new organism. The type strain is strain HK 204 (= AJ 2716 = CDC 9108-82 = IAM 12843 = JCM 3704 = ATCC 35998).


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