SUMMARY: One hundred and fifty-six strains of and related bacteria including representatives of and were studied using 223 morphological, physiological, biochemical and carbon source utilization tests. The results were subjected to computer analysis. At the 80 % similarity level all strains, except two, grouped into eight phenons representing: (A) Serratia marcescens with the neotype CCM303 (ATCC13880); (B) with the monotype NCTC10912 (ATCC27614); (C1) with the type ATCC14460; (C2) with the monotype CCM640 (ATCC183); (D) with the neotype of NCTC9381; (E) with the neotype NCTC10005 and with the type ATCC495, and (G) with the neotype NCTC10006. At the 70 % similarity level the phenons formed two groups: (A, B, C1, C2) and (D, E, F, G).

The following conclusions were drawn. (1) There are three species of enterobacteria producing prodigiosin: and (2) There are four species of , one colourless (). (3) Subphenons (biovars) are described within the four species of (4) Non-pigmented wild-type strains of can generally be differentiated from pigmented strains by characters other than pigmentation, because subphenons are homogeneous with respect to pigmentation.

This survey raised some problems of nomenclature because old descriptions could be found that could loosely fit the present phenons. Comparison with an authentic culture was considered to be the most objective way of identifying these phenons with earlier named species.


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