is the type species of , a recently proposed family in the order In the current study, growth, antigenic and genomic characteristics of this intracellular bacterium were investigated and compared to those of members of the family Growth of the organism, as assessed by infectivity assays, reached a plateau in 2--3 d although by light microscopy the cytopathic effect on the host cells increased for 12 or more days after infection. growth was unaffected by sulfadiazine. Cells infected by strain Zwere not recognized by either of two monoclonal antibodies specific for LPS and several specific primers were unable to PCR amplify a gene. The genome contained one copy of the ribosomal operon. The genome size of strain Zwas determined by PFGE to be 1·7 Mbp, and the G+C content was 42·5 mol%. These data, taken together with other published data, are consistent with the proposal that belongs to a distinct family in the order


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