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Chapter 6.2 : Media and Methods Used for the Identification of Aerobic Actinomycetes

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Abstract:

After initial isolation, subcultures must be incubated at 25, 35, and 45°C to determine the optimal temperature for growth of the microorganisms. Most isolates of grow best at 35°C, while most isolates of grow best at 25°C. Any specimen suspected of containing a thermophilic actinomycete must also be incubated at 50°C, since all thermophiles grow at this elevated temperature. The actinomycetes can be identified to the genus level on the basis of a variety of conventional phenotypic characteristics (microscopic [Gram and acid-fast staining] and macroscopic morphologies, growth requirements, metabolism of glucose, arylsulfatase production, and growth in lysozyme) and chemotaxonomic characteristics (whole-cell isomers of diaminopimelic acid and mycolic acid composition) ( Table 6.1-1 , above). Some of these tests are beyond the capabilities of most clinical laboratories. However, both microscopic and macroscopic morphologies combined with a few physiologic tests can give a presumptive identification to the genus or species level. A schematic flowchart for the tentative identification of medically important aerobic actinomycetes and related genera is given in Fig. 6.2-1 .

Citation: Garcia L. 2010. Media and Methods Used for the Identification of Aerobic Actinomycetes, p 254-266. In Clinical Microbiology Procedures Handbook, 3rd Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817435.ch6.2
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Figure 6.2-1

Schematic flowchart for tentative identification of medically important aerobic actinomycetes and related genera based on positive growth (A) or negative growth (B) in lysozyme.

Citation: Garcia L. 2010. Media and Methods Used for the Identification of Aerobic Actinomycetes, p 254-266. In Clinical Microbiology Procedures Handbook, 3rd Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817435.ch6.2
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Tables

Generic image for table
Table6.2-1

Characteristics differentiating the medically important species of the genus ,

Symbols and abbreviations: -, negative; +, positive; NA, not available; V, variable; d, doubtful.

Composite data from references , and .

Utilization as sole source of carbon and nitrogen.

Utilization as sole source of carbon.

Results vary according to method.

Original spelling has been corrected by LISTS Editor of IJSEM ( ).

Optimal growth.

Results differ in different publications ( ).

Citation: Garcia L. 2010. Media and Methods Used for the Identification of Aerobic Actinomycetes, p 254-266. In Clinical Microbiology Procedures Handbook, 3rd Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817435.ch6.2
Generic image for table
Table6.2-2

Differential characteristics of the genus ,

Data adapted from references , and . Except for R. equi, no species has been demonstrated to cause human infections. Many of the new species of that are being identified are from the environment.

AH-R-C, aerial hypha-rod-coccus; R-C, rod-coccus; RB-R-C, rudimentary branching-rod-coccus; H-R-C, hypha-rod-coccus growth cycle; +, positive, −, negative; V, variable; NT, not tested.

Citation: Garcia L. 2010. Media and Methods Used for the Identification of Aerobic Actinomycetes, p 254-266. In Clinical Microbiology Procedures Handbook, 3rd Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817435.ch6.2
Generic image for table
Table 6.2-3

Differential characteristics of the genus ,

Data adapted from references , and .

Symbols: +, positive; −, negative; V, variable.

Although Collins et al. named the organism parometabolum, the species name was changed by the LISTS Editor of the IJSEM to that is proposed as the correct etymology.

Although Kattar et al. named the organism strandjordae, the species name was changed by the LISTS Editor of the IJSEM to that is proposed as the correct etymology ( ).

Citation: Garcia L. 2010. Media and Methods Used for the Identification of Aerobic Actinomycetes, p 254-266. In Clinical Microbiology Procedures Handbook, 3rd Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817435.ch6.2
Generic image for table
Table 6.2-4

Differential characteristics of the genus ,

Data adapted from references , and .

+, positive; −, negative; W, weakly positive; NT, not tested.

Citation: Garcia L. 2010. Media and Methods Used for the Identification of Aerobic Actinomycetes, p 254-266. In Clinical Microbiology Procedures Handbook, 3rd Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817435.ch6.2
Generic image for table
Table6.2-5

Differential physiological characteristics of the medically important species

Data adapted from references , and .

Symbols: +, ≥ 90% of the strains are positive; −, ≥ 90% of the strains are negative; ND, not determined.

The original spelling of the specific epithet, , has been corrected by Euzèby ( ).

Citation: Garcia L. 2010. Media and Methods Used for the Identification of Aerobic Actinomycetes, p 254-266. In Clinical Microbiology Procedures Handbook, 3rd Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555817435.ch6.2

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