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Scientific classification e
Domain: Bacteria
Phylum: Proteobacteria
Class: Betaproteobacteria
Order: Nitrosomonadales
Family: Spirillaceae
Genus: Spirillum
Ehrenberg, 1832 emend. Podkopaeva et al., 2009

Spirillum is a genus of Gram-negative bacteria in the family Spirillaceae of the Nitrosomonadales of the Betaproteobacteria.[1][2][3] There are two species of Spirillum with validly or effectively published names - Spirillum winogradskyi and Spirillum volutans.[4]

Other "species" classified as Spirillum such as "Spirillum minus", "Spirillum pleomorphum", and "Spirillum pulli" are of uncertain phylogeny and in any case, these are names that have never been validly or effectively published and thus have no standing in nomenclature.[1][5]


Members of the genus Spirillum are large, elongate, spiral shaped, rigid cells.[5] Some have tufts of amphitrichous flagella at both poles. They are microaerophilic and usually found in stagnant freshwater rich in organic matter.[5]


  1. ^ a b Garrity, George M.; Brenner, Don J.; Krieg, Noel R.; Staley, James T. (eds.) (2005). Bergey's Manual of Systematic Bacteriology, Volume Two: The Proteobacteria, Part C: The Alpha-, Beta-, Delta-, and Epsilonproteobacteria. New York, New York: Springer. pp. 354–361. ISBN 978-0-387-24145-6.
  2. ^ Spirillum at the US National Library of Medicine Medical Subject Headings (MeSH)
  3. ^ Podkopaeva (D.), Grabovich (M.), Kuever (J.), Lysenko (A.M.), Tourova (T.P.), Kolganova (T.V.) and Dubinia (G.): Proposal of Spirillum winogradskyi sp. nov., a novel microaerophilic species, an amended description of the genus Spirillum and Request for an Opinion regarding the status of the species Spirillum volutans Ehrenberg 1832. Int. J. Syst. Evol. Microbiol., 2009, 59, 2916-2920.
  4. ^ Jean, Euzeby. "Spirillum". List of Prokaryotic names with Standing in Nomenclature. Retrieved November 5, 2014.
  5. ^ a b c Krieg, Noel (2006). "Chapter 3.2.5: The Genus Spirillum". In Dworkin, Martin; Falkow, Stanley; Rosenberg, Eugene; Schleifer, Karl-Heinz; Stackebrandt, Erko (eds.). The Prokaryotes: A Handbook on the Biology of Bacteria, Volume 5. Berlin: Springer Science & Business Media. ISBN 9780387254951.

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