An unknown Gram-positive rod-shaped bacterium was isolated from skin scrapings from the infected head of a sheep and subjected to a polyphasic taxonomic analysis. Chemical analysis revealed the presence of straight-chain and monounsaturated fatty acids and short-chain (C32-C36) mycolic acids consistent with the genus Corynebacterium. Comparative 16S rRNA gene sequencing confirmed that the unknown rod was a member of the genus Corynebacterium, with the organism forming a distinct sub-line and displaying greater than 3% sequence divergence with established species. The unknown Corynebacterium isolate was readily distinguished from recognized species of the genus by biochemical tests and electrophoretic analysis of whole-cell proteins. Based on phylogenetic and phenotypic evidence, it is proposed that the unknown bacterium from a sheep be classified in the genus Corynebacterium, as Corynebacterium capitovis sp. nov. The type strain of Corynebacterium capitovis is CCUG 39779T (= CIP 106739T).


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