Evolutionary relationships among Magnetospirillum strains inferred from phylogenetic analysis of 16S rDNA sequences

J. G. Burgess*, R. Kawaguchi, T. Sakaguchi, R. H. Thornhill, Tadashi Matsunaga

*Corresponding author for this work

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23 Citations (Scopus)


We have investigated the evolutionary relationships between two facultatively anaerobic Magnetospirillum strains (AMB-1 and MGT-1) and fastidious, obligately microaerophilic species, such as Magnetospirillum magnetotacticum, using a molecular phylogenetic approach. Genomic DNA from strains MGT-1 and AMB-1 was used as a template for amplification of the genes coding for 16S rRNA (16S rDNA) by the polymerase chain reaction. Amplified DNA fragments were sequenced (1,424 bp) and compared with sequences for M. magnetotacticum MS-1 and Magnetospirillum gryphiswaldense MSR-1. Phylogenetic analysis of the aligned 16S rDNA sequences indicated that the two new magnetic spirilla, AMB-1 and MGT-1, lie within the α subdivision (α-1) of the eubacterial group Proteobacteria and are closely related to Rhodospirillum fulvum and to several endosymbiotic bacteria. Strains AMB-1, MGT-1, and MS-1 formed a cluster, termed group I, in which they were more closely related to each other than to group II, which contained M. gryphiswaldense MSR-1. Group I strains were also physiologically distinct from strain MSR-1. Sequence alignment studies allowed elucidation of genus- specific regions of the 16S rDNA, and oligonucleotide primers complementary to two of these regions were used to develop a specific polymerase chain reaction assay for detection of magnetic spirilla in natural samples.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6689-6694
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Bacteriology
Issue number20
Publication statusPublished - 1993
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Immunology


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