color = lightgray
name = "Bacillus"

image_width = 220px
image_caption = "Bacillus subtilis", Gram stained
regnum = Bacteria
divisio = Firmicutes
classis = Bacilli
ordo = Bacillales
familia = Bacillaceae
genus = "Bacillus"
genus_authority = Cohn 1872
subdivision_ranks = Species
subdivision = Numerous, including: "Bacillus anthracis"
"Bacillus cereus"
"Bacillus coagulans"
"Bacillus globigii"
"Bacillus licheniformis"
"Bacillus megaterium"
"Bacillus natto"
"Bacillus subtilis"
"Bacillus sphaericus"
"Bacillus thuringiensis"
:"This page is about the bacterial genus. For the class, see Bacilli"."Bacillus" is a genus of rod-shaped, beta-hemolytic Gram-positive bacteria and a member of the division Firmicutes. "Bacillus" species are either obligate or facultative aerobes, and test positive for the enzyme catalase.cite book | author = Turnbull PCB | title = Bacillus. "In:" Barron's Medical Microbiology "(Baron S "et al", eds.)| edition = 4th ed. | publisher = Univ of Texas Medical Branch | year = 1996 | url = | isbn = 0-9631172-1-1 ] Ubiquitous in nature, "Bacillus" includes both free-living and pathogenic species. Under stressful environmental conditions, the cells produce oval endospores that can stay dormant for extended periods. These characteristics originally defined the genus, but not all such species are closely related, and many have been moved to other genera.cite book | author = Madigan M; Martinko J (editors). | title = Brock Biology of Microorganisms | edition = 11th ed. | publisher = Prentice Hall | year = 2005 | id = ISBN 0-13-144329-1 ]

Use as model organism

"Bacillus subtilis" is one of the best understood prokaryotes in terms of molecular biology and cell biology. Its superb genetic amenability and relatively large size have provided the powerful tools required to investigate a bacterium from all possible aspects. Recent improvements in fluorescence microscopy techniques have provided novel and amazing insight into the dynamic structure of a single cell organism. Research on "Bacillus subtilis" has been at the forefront of bacterial molecular biology and cytology, and the organism is a model for differentiation, gene/protein regulation, and cell cycle events in bacteria. cite book | author = Graumann P (editor). | title = Bacillus: Cellular and Molecular Biology | edition = 1st ed. | publisher = Caister Academic Press | year = 2007 | url= | id = [ ISBN 978-1-904455-12-7 ] ]

Clinical significance

Two "Bacillus" species are considered medically significant: "B. anthracis", which causes anthrax, and "B. cereus", which causes a foodborne illness similar to that of "Staphylococcus".cite book | author = Ryan KJ; Ray CG (editors) | title = Sherris Medical Microbiology | edition = 4th ed. | publisher = McGraw Hill | year = 2004 | id = ISBN 0-8385-8529-9 ] A third species, "B. thuringiensis", is an important insect pathogen, and is sometimes used to control insect pests. The type species is "B. subtilis", an important model organism. It is also a notable food spoiler, causing ropiness in bread and related food. "B. coagulans" is also important in food spoilage.

An easy way to isolate "Bacillus" is by placing non-sterile soil in a test tube with water, shaking, placing in melted Mannitol Salt Agar, and incubating at room temperature for at least a day. Colonies are usually large, spreading and irregularly-shaped. Under the microscope, the "Bacillus" appear as rods, and a substantial portion usually contain an oval endospore at one end, making it bulge.

The cell wall

The cell wall of "Bacillus" is a structure on the outside of the cell that forms the second barrier between the bacterium and the environment, and at the same time maintains triangle shape and withstands the pressure generated by the cell's turgor. The cell wall is composed of salt, teichoic and teichuronic acids. "B. subtilis" is the first bacterium for which the role of an actin-like cytoskeleton in cell shape determination and peptidoglycan synthesis was identified and for which the entire set of peptidoglycan synthesizing enzymes was localised. The role of the cytoskeleton in shape generation and maintenance is important cite book |chapterurl= |author=Scheffers DJ|chapter=The Cell Wall of Bacillus subtilis | title = Bacillus: Cellular and Molecular Biology "(Graumann P, ed.)| publisher = Caister Academic Press | year = 2007 | id = [ ISBN 978-1-904455-12-7 ] ] .

See also

* "Paenibacillus", a genus of bacteria that was formerly included in "Bacillus"

External links

* [ Pathema-"Bacillus" Resource]


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