Polyphasic approach to the classification and identification of Gardnerella vaginalis and unidentified Gardnerella vaginalis-like coryneforms present in bacterial vaginosis

Int J Syst Bacteriol. 1996 Jul;46(3):675-82. doi: 10.1099/00207713-46-3-675.


A taxonomic study of Gardnerella vaginalis and G. vaginalis-like coryneforms was performed in order to clarify the phylogenetic affiliation of these organisms and to improve future identification. We examined 50 strains by performing whole-cell protein and fatty acid analyses, a 16S rRNA sequence analysis, and an extensive phenotypic characterization analysis. The results of both chemotaxonomic techniques which we used divided the organisms into two main clusters, and the 16S rRNA sequence analysis revealed that the clusters represent different genera, which were easily distinguished by the results of classical phenotypic tests. The cluster I strains were identified as G. vaginalis, which was shown to be a close relative of the genus Bifidobacterium. An improved description of G. vaginalis is presented. The cluster II strains belong to or are closely related to Actinomyces turicensis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Bacterial Proteins / analysis
  • Base Sequence
  • DNA, Bacterial
  • Electrophoresis, Polyacrylamide Gel
  • Fatty Acids / analysis
  • Female
  • Gardnerella vaginalis / classification*
  • Gardnerella vaginalis / genetics
  • Gardnerella vaginalis / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Phenotype
  • Phylogeny
  • RNA, Bacterial
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 16S
  • Vaginosis, Bacterial / microbiology*


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • DNA, Bacterial
  • Fatty Acids
  • RNA, Bacterial
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 16S

Associated data

  • GENBANK/M29522
  • GENBANK/M55223
  • GENBANK/X53163
  • GENBANK/X53193
  • GENBANK/X53195
  • GENBANK/X53213
  • GENBANK/X53215
  • GENBANK/X53224
  • GENBANK/X53227
  • GENBANK/X55401
  • GENBANK/X58890
  • GENBANK/X68416
  • GENBANK/X69616
  • GENBANK/X73952
  • GENBANK/X77779
  • GENBANK/X78719
  • GENBANK/X78720
  • GENBANK/X79286
  • GENBANK/X79288
  • GENBANK/X80606
  • GENBANK/X87133