Komagataeibacter xylinus

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Komagataeibacter xylinus
Scientific classification
Komagataeibacter xylinus
Binomial name
Komagataeibacter xylinus
Brown 1886

Komagataeibacter xylinus is a species of bacteria best known for its ability to produce cellulose.

History and taxonomy[edit]

The species was first described in 1886 by Adrian John Brown, who identified the bacteria while studying fermentation. Brown gave the species the name Bacterium xylinum. It has since been known by several other names, mainly Acetobacter xylinum and Gluconacetobacter xylinus.[1] It was given its current name, with the establishment of the new genus Komagataeibacter, in 2012.[1][2][3] It is the type species of the genus.[4]

Genome and metabolism[edit]

K. xylinus is a member of the acetic acid bacteria, a group of Gram-negative aerobic bacteria that produce acetic acid during fermentation. K. xylinus is unusual among the group in also producing cellulose. Bacterial cellulose (also sometimes known as nanocellulose) is involved in the formation of biofilms.[1] It is chemically identical to plant cellulose, but has distinct physical structure and properties.[5]

The genome of a cellulose-deficient strain of K. xylinus was sequenced in 2011,[6] and followed by the genomes of cellulose-producing strains in 2014[7] and 2018.[8] The first cellulose-producing strain had a genome consisting of one chromosome 3.4 megabase pairs and five plasmids, of which one is a "megaplasmid" of about 330 kilobase pairs.[7]

Key genes related to cellulose production occur in the four-gene operon bcsABCD, which codes for the four subunits of the cellulose synthase enzyme. All four genes are required for efficient cellulose production in vivo, although BcsA and BscB are sufficient in vitro. Several other genes in the K. xylinus genome are also involved in cellulose production and regulation, including a cellulase enzyme.[1]

Uses and significance[edit]

K. xylinus was used for a long time as a model organism for the study of cellulose production in plants. It is also studied in its own right to explore bacterial biofilm production, cell-cell communication, and other topics of interest.[1] Production of bacterial cellulose for industrial uses has been the subject of extensive research, but is limited by productivity and scalability.[5][8]

Acetobacter xylinus is found to be the main microorganism in the culture of Kombucha.[9]


  1. ^ a b c d e Römling, Ute; Galperin, Michael Y. (September 2015). "Bacterial cellulose biosynthesis: diversity of operons, subunits, products, and functions". Trends in Microbiology. 23 (9): 545–557. doi:10.1016/j.tim.2015.05.005. PMC 4676712. PMID 26077867.
  2. ^ Yamada, Yuzo; Yukphan, Pattaraporn; Vu, Huong Thi Lan; Muramatsu, Yuki; Ochaikul, Duangjai; Nakagawa, Yasuyoshi (12 June 2011). "Subdivision of the genus Gluconacetobacter Yamada, Hoshino and Ishikawa 1998: the proposal of Komagatabacter gen. nov., for strains accommodated to the Gluconacetobacter xylinus group in the α-Proteobacteria". Annals of Microbiology. 62 (2): 849–859. doi:10.1007/s13213-011-0288-4.
  3. ^ Yamada, Yuzo; Yukphan, Pattaraporn; Lan Vu, Huong Thi; Muramatsu, Yuki; Ochaikul, Duangjai; Tanasupawat, Somboon; Nakagawa, Yasuyoshi (2012). "Description of Komagataeibacter gen. nov., with proposals of new combinations (Acetobacteraceae)". The Journal of General and Applied Microbiology. 58 (5): 397–404. doi:10.2323/jgam.58.397.
  4. ^ "Komagataeibacter". List of prokaryotic names with standing in nomenclature. Retrieved 5 July 2018.
  5. ^ a b Klemm, Dieter; Kramer, Friederike; Moritz, Sebastian; Lindström, Tom; Ankerfors, Mikael; Gray, Derek; Dorris, Annie (6 June 2011). "Nanocelluloses: A New Family of Nature-Based Materials". Angewandte Chemie International Edition. 50 (24): 5438–5466. doi:10.1002/anie.201001273. PMID 21598362.
  6. ^ Ogino, H.; Azuma, Y.; Hosoyama, A.; Nakazawa, H.; Matsutani, M.; Hasegawa, A.; Otsuyama, K.-i.; Matsushita, K.; Fujita, N.; Shirai, M. (28 November 2011). "Complete Genome Sequence of NBRC 3288, a Unique Cellulose-Nonproducing Strain of Gluconacetobacter xylinus Isolated from Vinegar". Journal of Bacteriology. 193 (24): 6997–6998. doi:10.1128/JB.06158-11. PMC 3232855. PMID 22123756.
  7. ^ a b Kubiak, Katarzyna; Kurzawa, Marta; Jędrzejczak-Krzepkowska, Marzena; Ludwicka, Karolina; Krawczyk, Mariusz; Migdalski, Andrzej; Kacprzak, Magdalena M.; Loska, Damian; Krystynowicz, Alina; Bielecki, Stanisław (April 2014). "Complete genome sequence of Gluconacetobacter xylinus E25 strain—Valuable and effective producer of bacterial nanocellulose". Journal of Biotechnology. 176: 18–19. doi:10.1016/j.jbiotec.2014.02.006. PMID 24556328.
  8. ^ a b Liu, Miao; Liu, Lingpu; Jia, Shiru; Li, Siqi; Zou, Yang; Zhong, Cheng (19 April 2018). "Complete genome analysis of Gluconacetobacter xylinus CGMCC 2955 for elucidating bacterial cellulose biosynthesis and metabolic regulation". Scientific Reports. 8 (1): 6266. doi:10.1038/s41598-018-24559-w. ISSN 2045-2322. PMC 5908849. PMID 29674724.
  9. ^ Jankovic, I., & Stojanovic, M. (1994). Microbial and chemical composition, growth, therapeutical and antimicrobial characteristics of tea fungus. Mikrobiologija (Yugoslavia).