Corynebacterium uropygiale is a bacterium described in 2016 following thorough investigations using a polyphasic approach including MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry, phylogeny of 16S rRNA and rpoB genes and DNA fingerprinting. To date, it has been regarded as endemic to preen gland secretions of healthy turkeys (Meleagris gallopavo). It is member of the genus Corynebacterium and belongs to the phylum Actinobacteria. Although, a large number of bacteria including Corynebacteria have been reported as part of the normal microbiome of birds, C. uropygiale is the only member of the genus that has been recovered in preen gland secretions of birds. It is one of three bacterial species which have been found to colonize preen gland secretions of birds.
Corynebacterium uropygiale grows on complex media supplemented with monounsaturated fatty acids (e. g. Lysogeny Broth (LB) agar supplemented with 0.3% Tween-80). On such media, luxurious growth is obtained after 48 h of incubation at 37 °C. C. uropygiale can also be grown on Columbia agar containing 5% sheep blood, but faint growth is obtained. C. uropygiale does not show significant growth on media, such as LB, Tryptic-Soy agar or Müller-Hinton-Agar. The presence or absence of CO2 does not influence growth characteristics.
Corynebacterium uropygiale are fastidious club-shaped Gram-positive rods which assemble in palisades and V-shape-like patterns. They are non-acid fast and non-spore-forming facultative anaerobes. The cell wall contains mycolic acids. G+C content accounts to 60.7 mol% in the type strain. The closest relative is Corynebacterium spheniscorum which has been recovered from Magellanic Penguin (Spheniscus magellanicus).
C. uropygiale is capable of proliferating in lipid-rich environments, such as the preen gland. It uses the fatty acids of its surrounding rather than synthesizing them by itself. C. uropygiale has adapted its metabolism to its habitat as it lost the ability to produce these fatty acids by itself. In terms of evolution, this saves energy and potentially increases fitness.
- Markus Santhosh Braun, Stefan Zimmermann, Maria Danner, Harun-or Rashid, Michael Wink, Corynebacterium uropygiale sp. nov., isolated from the preen gland of Turkeys (Meleagris gallopavo), Systematic and Applied Microbiology, Volume 39, Issue 2, March 2016, Pages 88-92, ISSN 0723-2020, https://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.syapm.2015.12.001.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-12-31. Retrieved 2016-12-31.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
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