We determined almost complete small-subunit ribosomal DNA sequences of 50 reference strains belonging to the genera , and and compared these sequences with previously published sequences. Three phylogenetic methods (the neighbor-joining, maximum-likelihood, and maximum-parsimony methods), as well as a bootstrap analysis, were used to assess the robustness of each topology which we obtained. The results of comparative phylogenetic analyses confirmed that the genera , and form a monophyletic taxon within the phylum containing the high-G+C-content gram-positive bacteria. The genus appeared to be a monophyletic unit whose members could be divided into four major clusters. The validity of the genus is doubtful since members of this genus clearly belong to the genus . The variability of chemotaxonomic characteristics within the genus suggests that small-subunit ribosomal DNA sequence analysis is probably the most straightforward method for confirming that a bacterium belongs to this genus.


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