The recently reported chemotaxonomic and genotypic description of two well-separated subgroups (I and II) and their affiliation to and the unnamed DNA hybridization group (HG) 11 (G. Huys, M. Altwegg, M.-L. HÄnninen, M. Vancanneyt, L. Vauterin, R. Coopman, U. U. Torck, J. Lüthy-Hottenstein, P. Janssen, and K. Kersters, Syst. Appl. Microbiol. 19:616-623, 1996) has questioned the original species descriptions of and . In order to elucidate the uncleartaxonomic status of these taxa in the genus , we have further investigated a collection of 14 reference strains and 14 related isolates encompassing the taxa subgroups I and II, , and HG11 by DNA-DNA hybridization (on 17 of the 28 strains) and phenotypic characterization (on all 28 strains). Genotypically, the investigated strains could be grouped into two DNA hybridization groups that exhibited between-group homologies ranging from 42 to 52%. The members of DNA homology group I (DNA binding, 76 to 100%) were strains of subgroup I, including the type strain LMG 3774, and two -like isolates, leading to the conclusion that these strains should be considered true representatives of the species A eucrenophila. The strains of subgroup II, HG11, and , on the other hand, were closely joined in DNA homology group II (DNA binding, 74 to 105%) together with two presumptive isolates. The fact that strain LMG 16330 was the only type strain residing in DNA homology group I1 implies that HG11 and subgroup II should be classified in the species . Except for the somewhat aberrant phenotypic positions of HG11 strains LMG 13075 and LMG 13076, the establishment of DNA homology groups I and II was supported by the delineation of phena 1 and 2 (level of correlation, 90%), respectively, as revealed by numerical analysis of 136 phenotypic test results. These data indicate and are phenotypically highly related but can be easily separated by testing the production of acid from D-cellobiose. and lactose and the assimilation of D-cellobiose. Extended descriptions of both species are given.


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