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Scientific classification

Veillonella are Gram-negative bacteria (Gram stain pink) anaerobic cocci, unlike most Firmicutes, which are Gram-positive bacteria.[1] This bacterium is well known for its lactate fermenting abilities. It is a normal bacterium in the intestines and oral mucosa of mammals. In humans they have been implicated in cases of osteomyelitis and endocarditis, for example with the species Veillonella parvula.

Veillonella dispar is the most nitrate-reducing bacterium in the oral cavity, which is beneficially anti-bacterial.[2]


Lactate is fermented to propionate and acetate by the methylmalonyl-CoA pathway. Little ATP is produced in this fermentation. High substrate affinity is suggested to be the reason.

3 Lactate → acetate + 2 propionate + CO
+ H

A study of Veillonella in endurance athletes found that a relative abundance of the bacteria in the gut is associated with increased treadmill run time performance. This effect was demonstrated to be due to the organism's propionate metabolite produced from lactic acid.[3]


The currently accepted taxonomy is based on the List of Prokaryotic names with Standing in Nomenclature (LPSN) [4] and National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI)[5] and the phylogeny is based on 16S rRNA-based LTP release 111 by The All-Species Living Tree Project [6]

?V. tobetsuensis Mashima et al. (in press)

V. magna Kraatz and Taras 2008

V. criceti (Rogosa 1965) Mays et al. 1982

V. ratti (Rogosa 1965) Mays et al. 1982 emend. Kraatz and Taras 2008

V. montpellierensis Jumas-Bilak et al. 2004

V. caviae Mays et al. 1982

V. dispar (Rogosa 1965) Mays et al. 1982

V. parvula (Veillon and Zuber 1898) Prévot 1933 Mays et al. 1982 (type sp.)

V. rogosae Arif et al. 2008

V. atypica (Rogosa 1965) Mays et al. 1982

V. denticariosi Byun et al. 2007

V. rodentium (Rogosa 1965) Mays et al. 1982


  1. ^ Megrian D, Taib N, Witwinowski J, Gribaldo S (2020). "One or two membranes? Diderm Firmicutes challenge the Gram-positive/Gram-negative divide". Molecular Microbiology. 113 (3): 659–671. doi:10.1111/mmi.14469. PMID 31975449.
  2. ^ Mitsui T, Saito M, Harasawa R (2018). "Salivary nitrate-nitrite conversion capacity after nitrate ingestion and incidence of Veillonella spp. in elderly individuals". Journal of Oral Science. 60 (3): 405–410. doi:10.2334/josnusd.17-0337. PMID 30101819.
  3. ^ Scheiman, Jonathan; Luber, Jacob M.; Chavkin, Theodore A.; MacDonald, Tara; Tung, Angela; Pham, Loc-Duyen; Wibowo, Marsha C.; Wurth, Renee C.; Punthambaker, Sukanya; Tierney, Braden T.; Yang, Zhen; Hattab, Mohammad W.; Avila-Pacheco, Julian; Clish, Clary B.; Lessard, Sarah; Church, George M.; Kostic, Aleksandar D. (24 June 2019). "Meta-omics analysis of elite athletes identifies a performance-enhancing microbe that functions via lactate metabolism". Nature Medicine. 25 (7): 1104–1109. doi:10.1038/s41591-019-0485-4. PMC 7368972. PMID 31235964.
  4. ^ J.P. Euzéby. "Veillonella". List of Prokaryotic names with Standing in Nomenclature (LPSN). Archived from the original on 2013-01-27. Retrieved 2013-03-20.
  5. ^ Sayers; et al. "Veillonella". National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) taxonomy database. Retrieved 2013-03-20.
  6. ^ All-Species Living Tree Project."16S rRNA-based LTP release 111 (full tree)" (PDF). Silva Comprehensive Ribosomal RNA Database. Retrieved 2013-03-20.

Further reading[edit]