A revision of Rhizobium Frank 1889, with an emended description of the genus, and the inclusion of all species of Agrobacterium Conn 1942 and Allorhizobium undicola de Lajudie et al. 1998 as new combinations: Rhizobium radiobacter, R. rhizogenes, R. rubi, R. undicola and R. vitis

Int J Syst Evol Microbiol. 2001 Jan;51(Pt 1):89-103. doi: 10.1099/00207713-51-1-89.


Rhizobium, Agrobacterium and Allorhizobium are genera within the bacterial family Rhizobiaceae, together with Sinorhizobium. The species of Agrobacterium, Agrobacterium tumefaciens (syn. Agrobacterium radiobacter), Agrobacterium rhizogenes, Agrobacterium rubi and Agrobacterium vitis, together with Allorhizobium undicola, form a monophyletic group with all Rhizobium species, based on comparative 16S rDNA analyses. Agrobacterium is an artificial genus comprising plant-pathogenic species. The monophyletic nature of Agrobacterium, Allorhizobium and Rhizobium and their common phenotypic generic circumscription support their amalgamation into a single genus, Rhizobium. Agrobacterium tumefaciens was conserved as the type species of Agrobacterium, but the epithet radiobacter would take precedence as Rhizobium radiobacter in the revised genus. The proposed new combinations are Rhizobium radiobacter, Rhizobium rhizogenes, Rhizobium rubi, Rhizobium undicola and Rhizobium vitis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Base Composition
  • DNA, Bacterial / chemistry
  • DNA, Bacterial / genetics
  • DNA, Ribosomal / chemistry
  • DNA, Ribosomal / genetics
  • Phylogeny
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 16S
  • Rhizobiaceae / classification*
  • Rhizobiaceae / genetics
  • Rhizobium / classification*
  • Rhizobium / genetics
  • Terminology as Topic*


  • DNA, Bacterial
  • DNA, Ribosomal
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 16S