A phylogenetic analysis of all validly published members of the , including several new isolates from our laboratory, suggests three orders within this archaeal kingdom. The consist of both the rod-shaped, hyperthermophilic, neutrophilic representatives of the and the members of the new family . The harbor all thermoacidophilic, coccoid organisms. The neutrophilic, hyperthermophilic cocci are members of a new order tentatively named “.” This order comprises two families, the , characterized by maximal growth temperatures of up to 100°C, and the new family , for which optimal growth occurs at temperatures above 100°C.


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