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Domain : Bacteria (bacteria)
Department : Bacteroidetes
Class : Sphingobacteriia
Order : Sphingobacteriales
Family : Sphingobacteriaceae
Genre : Sphingobacterium
Scientific name
Eiko Yabuuchi et al. 1983

Sphingobacterium is a genus of bacteria and belongs to the Sphingobacteriaceae family . An important feature are the sphingolipids it contains . The type species is Sphingobacterium spiritivorum .


They are straight, rod-shaped bacteria that are 0.3 to 0.6 micrometers wide and 0.5 to 0.6 micrometers long. The gram test is negative. They have no flagella and are immobile (some closely related types of bacteria, e.g. some of the Bacteroidaceae can move gliding). The colonies are usually yellowish in color after a few days.

Growth and metabolism

Sphingobacterium is chemo-organotrophic and aerobic , metabolism is respiration . Urease is present in some species, e.g. B. in Sphingobacterium spiritivorum and S. canadense . The indole test is negative. The catalase , phosphatase and oxidase tests are positive. An important trait is the possession of sphingophospholipids . The sphingolipids distinguish them greatly from most other bacteria, since most bacteria do not have sphingophospholipids. Species that contain sphingolipids include e.g. B. to the family Sphingomonadaceae , to the Proteobacteria , and some species of the Bacteroides , which like the Sphingobacteria belong to the Bacteroidetes . The occurrence of these lipids also serves as an important distinguishing feature from the Flavobacteriaceae . Another important feature for differentiation is the menaquinone 7 found in Sphingobacterium .


The occurrence is varied. Different types were u. a. found in soil and compost. Sphingobacterium spiritivorum , Sphingobacterium multivorum , Sphingobacterium mizutaii and Sphingobacterium thalpophilum are free- living and saprophytic bacteria. Sphingobacterium spiritivorum was found frequently in human blood and urine.


Sphingobacterium spiritivorum and Sphingobacterium multivorum were initially included in the genus Flavobacterium . In 1983 they were put by Eiko Yabuuchi to the newly introduced genus Sphingobacterium , u. a. due to the contained sphingolipids. A selection of types follows:


  • War, NR; Ludwig, W .; Whitman, WB; Hedlund, BP; Paster, BJ; Staley, JT; Ward, N .; Brown, D .; Parte, A .: Bergey's Manual of Systematic Bacteriology. Volume 4: The Bacteroidetes, Spirochaetes, Tenericutes (Mollicutes), Acidobacteria, Fibrobacteres, Fusobacteria, Dictyoglomi, Gemmatimonadetes, Lentisphaerae, Verrucomicrobia, Chlamydiae, and Planctomycetes . Springer, 2010, ISBN 978-0-387-68572-4 , pp. 331-339 .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ HN Shah and MD Collins: Genus Bacteroides. A chemotaxonomical perspective. In: Journal of Applied Bacteriology . tape 55 , 1983, pp. 403-416 .
  2. Systematics according to JP Euzéby: List of Prokaryotic names with Standing in Nomenclature (LPSN) ( Memento of the original from March 21, 2013 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (As of December 8, 2017) @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.bacterio.cict.fr