Strain CCH (T = type strain), a helical procaryote that was isolated from floral surfaces of (Convolvulaceae) in Jiangsu, People's Republic of China, was found to be a sterol-requiring member of the class . The cells of strain CCH were small, motile helices that were devoid of a cell wall or periplasmic fibrils. The organism passed through filters with average pore diameters of 300 and 220 nm. Strain CCH grew rapidly in liquid media having simple compositions, reaching stationary growth phase within 24 h at 30°C. Growth occurred at temperatures ranging from 25 to 37°C. The organism fermented glucose and other sugars with acid production and showed weak arginine hydrolysis. It did not hydrolyze urea. In preliminary electrophoretic analyses, the cell protein patterns of strain CCH were distinct from those of eight other spiroplasmas commonly found on flowers. Using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays and antisera to strain CCH, we found no serological relationship to antigens of the 23 previously recognized spiroplasma groups or species. These distinctions were confirmed by performing reciprocal metabolism inhibition and deformation serological tests, in which we used antigens and antisera to representatives of spiroplasma groups I through XXIII. The base composition (guanine-plus-cytosine content) of the DNA of strain CCH was about 29.0 mol%. On the basis of these findings, we propose that spiroplasma strain CCH (= ATCC 43960) be designated group XXIV and the type strain of a new species, .


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