Chapter 13 : Aerobic Actinomycetes

MyBook is a cheap paperback edition of the original book and will be sold at uniform, low price.

Preview this chapter:
Zoom in

Aerobic Actinomycetes, Page 1 of 2

| /docserver/preview/fulltext/10.1128/9781555815455/9781555813970_Chap13-1.gif /docserver/preview/fulltext/10.1128/9781555815455/9781555813970_Chap13-2.gif


The group of gram-positive bacillary organisms broadly known as “aerobic actinomycetes” consists of a vast array of taxonomically heterogeneous and divergent genera. This chapter deals only with those genera having the most impact on human health care, i.e., those that usually affect primarily patients with immunocompromising conditions. The combination of increasing conditions impairing host resistance to invasion by environmental pathogens and the rapidly progressing technological capability to identify isolates recovered from such patients has allowed a wide expansion of the species known to be capable of causing disease in humans (albeit under special circumstances). A better understanding of the epidemiology, clinical course, and antimicrobial susceptibilities of aerobic actinomycetes is essential. Molecular identification and typing techniques will also bring a better understanding of the interrelatedness of the various genera and species. Evidence-based evaluation is paramount to rapid diagnosis and early choice in therapeutic modalities, aimed to achieve better outcomes in patients. Clinical laboratories must become aware of the role now played by the aerobic actinomycetes in disease and must work with clinical care providers to determine when identification, susceptibility testing, and therapeutic or surgical interventions are necessary.

Citation: Saubolle M. 2009. Aerobic Actinomycetes, p 269-281. In Hayden R, Carroll K, Tang Y, Wolk D (ed), Diagnostic Microbiology of the Immunocompromised Host. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815455.ch13
Highlighted Text: Show | Hide
Loading full text...

Full text loading...


1. Ambaye, A.,, P. Kohner,, P. Wollan,, K. Roberts,, G. Roberts, and, F. R. Cockerill. 1997. Comparison of agar dilution, broth microdilution, disk diffusion, Etest, and BACTEC radiometric methods for antimicrobial susceptibility testing of clinical isolates of the Nocardia asteroides complex. J. Clin. Microbiol. 35: 847852.
2. Beaman, B.,, and L. Beaman. 1994. Nocardia species: host-parasite relationships. Clin. Microbiol. Rev. 7: 213264.
3. Brown, J. M.,, and M. M. McNeill. 2003. Nocardia, Rhodococcus, Gordonia, Actinomadura, Streptomyces, and other aerobic actinomycetes, p. 502–531. In P. R. Murray,, E. J. Baron,, M. A. Pfaller,, F. C. Tenover, and, R. H. Yolken (ed.), Manual of Clinical Microbiology, 8th ed. American Society for Microbiology, Washington, DC.
4. Brown-Elliott, B.,, J. Brown,, P. Conville, and, R. J. Wallace. 2006. Clinical and laboratory features of the Nocardia spp. based on current molecular taxonomy. Clin. Microbiol. Rev. 19: 259282.
5. Burgert, S. J. 1999. Nocardiosis: a clinical review. Infect. Dis. Clin. Pract. 8: 2732.
6. Conville, P.,, S. Fischer,, C. Cartwright, and, F. Witebsky. 2000. Identification of Nocardia species by restriction endonuclease analysis of an amplified portion of the 16S rRNA gene. J. Clin. Microbiol. 38: 158164.
7. Conville, P. A.,, and F. G. Witebsky. 2007. Nocardia, Rhodococcus, Gordonia, Actinomyces, Streptomyces, and other aerobic actinomycetes, p. 515–542. In P. R. Murray,, E. J. Baron,, J. H. Jorgenson,, M. L. Landry, and, M. A. Pfaller (ed.), Manual of Clinical Microbiology, 9th ed. ASM Press, Washington, DC.
8. Conville, P. S.,, and F. G. Witebsky. 2007. Analysis of multiple differing copies of the 16S rRNA gene in five clinical isolates and three type strains of Nocardia species and implications for species assignment. J. Clin. Microbiol. 45: 11461151.
9. Dravid, M. N.,, A. Venugopalan,, R. S. Bharadwaj, and, S. S. Nene. 1991. Mycetoma due to Nocardia caviae—a case report. Indian J. Pathol. Microbiol. 34: 6263.
10. Lumb, R.,, H. Greville,, J. Martin,, N. Sangster, and, M. Holmes. 2002. Nocardia asteroides isolated from three patients with cystic fibrosis. Eur. J. Clin. Microbiol. Infect. Dis. 21: 230233.
11. McNeil, M.,, and J. Brown. 1994. The medically important aerobic actinomycetes: epidemiology and microbiology. Clin. Microbiol. Rev. 7: 357417.
12. NCCLS. 2003. Susceptibility testing of mycobacteria, nocardiae, and other aerobic actinomycetes. NCCLS document M24-A. NCCLS, Wayne, PA.
13. Roth, A.,, S. Andrees,, R. Kroppenstedt,, D. Harmsen, and, H. Mauch. 2003. Phylogeny of the genus Nocardia based on reassessed 16S rRNA gene sequences reveals underspeciation and division of strains classified as Nocardia asteroides into three established species and two unnamed taxons. J. Clin. Microbiol. 41: 851856.
14. Saubolle, M. A. 2002. Aerobic actinomycetes, p. 1201–1220. In K. D. McClatchey (ed.), Clinical Laboratory Medicine, 2nd ed. Lippincott Williams and Wilkins, Philadelphia, PA.
15. Saubolle, M. A.,, and D. Sussland. 2003. Nocardiosis: review of clinical and laboratory experience. J. Clin. Microbiol. 41: 44974501.
16. Simpson, G.,, E. Stinson,, M. Egger, and, J. Remington. 1981. Nocardial infections in the immunocompromised host: a detailed study in a defined population. Rev. Infect. Dis. 3: 492507.
17. Venugopal, P. L.,, and T. V. Venugopal. 1990. Red grain mycetoma of the scalp due to Actinomadura pelletieri in Madurai. Indian J. Pathol. Microbiol. 33: 384386.
18. Venugopal, P. V.,, T. V. Venugopal,, W. N. Laing,, Y. al Humaidan,, S. S. Namnyak,, A. A. al Jama, and, A. M. Elbashier. 1990. Black grain mycetoma caused by Madurella grisea in Saudi Arabia. Int. J. Dermatol. 29: 434435.
19. Wallace, R. J.,, B. Brown,, Z. Blacklock,, R. Ulrich,, K. Jost,, J. Brown,, M. McNeil,, G. Onyi,, V. Steingrube, and, J. Gibson. 1995. New Nocardia taxon among isolates of Nocardia brasiliensis associated with invasive disease. J. Clin. Microbiol. 33: 15281533.
20. Woods, G. L.,, B. A. Brown-Elliott,, E. P. Desmond,, G. S. Hall,, L. Heifets,, G. E. Pfyffer,, J. C. Ridderhof,, M. R. Plaunt,, R. J. Wallace,, N. G. Warren, and, F. G. Witebsky. 2001. Susceptibility testing of mycobacteria, nocardiae, and other actinomycetes, vol. 20. NCCLS, Wayne, PA.


Generic image for table
Table 1.

Newer species of recently recognized and characterized within the stable susceptibility profiles of described by Wallace and colleagues

Citation: Saubolle M. 2009. Aerobic Actinomycetes, p 269-281. In Hayden R, Carroll K, Tang Y, Wolk D (ed), Diagnostic Microbiology of the Immunocompromised Host. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815455.ch13
Generic image for table
Table 2.

Species of associated with human infection

Citation: Saubolle M. 2009. Aerobic Actinomycetes, p 269-281. In Hayden R, Carroll K, Tang Y, Wolk D (ed), Diagnostic Microbiology of the Immunocompromised Host. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555815455.ch13

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Please check the format of the address you have entered.
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error