Talk:Mycobacterium

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Etymology of Myco–[edit]

Why is it called a "myco"bacterium? Isn't "myco" the radical for fungi? - Thanks —Preceding unsigned comment added by 201.8.16.151 (talkcontribs)

I came here wondering the same thing 67.188.22.41 03:51, 29 January 2006 (UTC)
  • The Latin root myco- does mean fungus or fungus-like, though it can also mean waxy (see mycolic acid for an example of this usage). While Mycobacterium species do bear a passing resemblance to fungi when they grown on solid media (as in this image), it is the presence of "waxy" compounds in the cell wall that gives this genus its name—as well as its resistance to Gram staining. -- MarcoTolo 22:15, 1 May 2006 (UTC)
  • I was wondering the exact same thing. I went to Discussions to see if there was any mention of the issue, and lo and behold, the only topic in Discussions is the very issue I was concerned about. Go, Wikipedia!
Hah, me too. Maybe it should be in the article? --Galaxiaad 07:46, 14 February 2007 (UTC)


  • Hi, actually I have a book here that states "The name myco, meaning fungus like, was derived from their occasional exhibition of filamentous growth." Microbiology an Introduction, Tortora Funke and Case, 8th Ed p. 325 Would love to know the actual answer! :)Bindi13 (talk) 01:52, 24 May 2008 (UTC)

i have a book that says the same thing —Preceding unsigned comment added by 86.13.64.91 (talk) 12:10, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

We were told the same thing in Spain during our microbiology lectures: mycobacteria were thought to be "like fungi", which gave them their name. The discovery of the waxy components of the wall is probably much newer than the name. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 87.221.9.206 (talk) 15:01, 20 June 2010 (UTC)

It's a Greek word, not a Latin word. The 'y' is a clue. Even with neologisms which the Greco-Romans would never have used, Latin spelling and endings are used even to translate Greek words. I know of no such use of 'wax', and am not convinced this is the origin of 'mycolic', so in light of all this I'll delete that reference from the article. Harsimaja (talk) 02:29, 22 August 2011 (UTC)

Mycobacterium celatum[edit]

If someone has a minute to look at that article, it needs wikifying and a lot of expanding. Itsmejudith (talk) 13:23, 18 March 2008 (UTC)

M. miroti is also in the M. tuberculosis complex. This is not indicated in the list. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 150.142.232.4 (talk) 15:58, 4 June 2008 (UTC) vcb

neither Gram negative nor positive[edit]

Where does this assumption come from ? I would regard this with great skepticism. XApple (talk) 12:53, 5 June 2008 (UTC)


it cant be gram stained with normal techniques as it has no cell wall, so acid fast staining is used. which gives a result, so saying it is neither gram positive or negative is untrue, right? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 86.13.64.91 (talk) 12:11, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

They do have a cell wall —Preceding unsigned comment added by 59.92.77.54 (talk) 03:22, 8 December 2010 (UTC) bv

Mycobacterial capsule[edit]

The article states that mycobateria have no capsule. I thought it was widely known that they do have a capsule containing a-glucan? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 130.37.210.210 (talk) 12:15, 28 June 2011 (UTC)

You are right. Mycobacterium has capsule but its observation is difficult with conventional microscopy techniques. See: Daffé M, Etienne G. The capsule of Mycobacterium tuberculosis and its implications for pathogenicity. Tuber Lung Dis. 1999;79(3):153-69. PMID 10656114. [1]. Quotation: "Although conventional processing of samples for microscopy studies failed to demonstrate this structure around in vitro-grown bacilli, the application of new microscopy techniques to mycobacteria allows the visualization of a thick capsule in specimen from axenic cultures of mycobacteria."--Miguelferig (talk) 20:44, 10 January 2013 (UTC)