We describe the phylogenetic position and some taxonomically relevant characteristics of a small pleomorphic gram-negative bacterium that was cocultured with some strains of the myxobacterium that were isolated from the same geographic and ecological habitat. A 16S ribosomal DNA analysis revealed that the companion was a member of the “” complex and was most closely related to members of the genus The results of a fatty acid analysis, an isoprenoid composition analysis, and a DNA G+C content analysis and the presence of sphingolipids confirmed that this bacterium is affiliated with the genus As the companion bacterium survived for only a few generations on solid media and could not be maintained in pure culture, we assign to this novel taxon that lives in close association with the myxobacterium status as “ comitans.”


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