Phylogenetic relationships between some members of the genera Neisseria, Acinetobacter, Moraxella, and Kingella based on partial 16S ribosomal DNA sequence analysis

Int J Syst Bacteriol. 1994 Jul;44(3):387-91. doi: 10.1099/00207713-44-3-387.


We obtained 16S ribosomal DNA (rDNA) sequence data for strains belonging to 11 species of Proteobacteria, including the type strains of Kingella kingae, Neisseria lactamica, Neisseria meningitidis, Moraxella lacunata subsp. lacunata, [Neisseria] ovis, Moraxella catarrhalis, Moraxella osloensis, [Moraxella] phenylpyruvica, and Acinetobacter lwoffii, as well as strains of Neisseria subflava and Acinetobacter calcoaceticus. The data in a distance matrix constructed by comparing the sequences supported the proposal that the genera Acinetobacter and Moraxella and [N.] ovis should be excluded from the family Neisseriaceae. Our results are consistent with hybridization data which suggest that these excluded taxa should be part of a new family, the Moraxellaceae. The strains that we studied can be divided into the following five groups: (i) M. lacunata subsp. lacunata, [N.] ovis, and M. catarrhalis; (ii) M. osloensis; (iii) [M.] phenylpyruvica; (iv) A. calcoaceticus and A. lwoffii; and (v) N. meningitidis, N. subflava, N. lactamica, and K. kingae. We agree with the previous proposal that [N.] ovis should be renamed Moraxella ovis, as this organism is closely related to Moraxella species and not to Neisseria species. The generically misnamed taxon [M.] phenylpyruvica belongs to the proposed family Moraxellaceae, but it is sufficiently different to warrant exclusion from the genus Moraxella. Further work needs to be done to investigate genetically similar species, such as Psychrobacter immobilis, before the true generic position of this organism can be determined. Automated 16S rDNA sequencing with the PCR allows workers to accurately determine phylogenetic relationships between groups of organisms.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acinetobacter / classification
  • Acinetobacter / genetics
  • Base Sequence
  • DNA Primers / genetics
  • DNA, Bacterial / genetics*
  • DNA, Ribosomal / genetics*
  • Kingella / classification
  • Kingella / genetics
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Moraxella / classification
  • Moraxella / genetics
  • Neisseria / classification
  • Neisseria / genetics
  • Neisseriaceae / classification*
  • Neisseriaceae / genetics*
  • Phylogeny
  • RNA, Bacterial / genetics
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 16S / genetics
  • Sequence Homology, Nucleic Acid
  • Species Specificity


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

Associated data

  • GENBANK/X74893
  • GENBANK/X74894
  • GENBANK/X74895
  • GENBANK/X74896
  • GENBANK/X74897
  • GENBANK/X74898
  • GENBANK/X74899
  • GENBANK/X74900
  • GENBANK/X74901
  • GENBANK/X74902
  • GENBANK/X74903