Query: NC_014169:2466442 Bifidobacterium longum subsp. longum JDM301 chromosome, complete Lineage: Bifidobacterium longum; Bifidobacterium; Bifidobacteriaceae; Bifidobacteriales; Actinobacteria; Bacteria General Information: Representatives of this genus naturally colonize the human gastrointestinal tract (GIT) and are important for establishing and maintaining homeostasis of the intestinal ecosystem to allow for normal digestion. Their presence has been associated with beneficial health effects, such as prevention of diarrhea, amelioration of lactose intolerance, or immunomodulation. The stabilizing effect on GIT microflora is attributed to the capacity of bifidobacteria to produce bacteriocins, which are bacteriostatic agents with a broad spectrum of action, and to their pH-reducing activity. Most of the ~30 known species of bifidobacteria have been isolated from the mammalian GIT, and some from the vaginal and oral cavity. All are obligate anaerobes belonging to the Actinomycetales, branch of Gram-positive bacteria with high GC content that also includes Corynebacteria, Mycobacteria, and Streptomycetes. This organism is found in adult humans and formula fed infants as a normal component of gut flora.
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General Information: Produces thermostable enzymes. Members of this genus are distinguished from most actinomycetes by their ability to form clustered spores that attach directly to the substrate mycelia, and not to the aerial mycelia. Moreover, these bacteria do not produce aerial mycelia at all. M. fusca is the most thermophilic, with some growth detectable at up to 75 degrees C. The natural habitat of Thermobifida is self-heated organic materials, like rotting hay, compost, manure or urban waste piles, etc., which they share with other thermophilic and thermotolerant actinomycetes. Biological and physiological features of these bacteria are accordingly adapted to the conditions of such environments, namely the high temperatures and the presence of abundant plant materials and other bio-polymer substrates of natural origin. Actinomycetes are well suited for this environment because they generally grow as branching hyphae and are well adapted to penetration and degradation of insoluble substrates such as lignocellulose. Spores of Thermobifida are known to cause allergic respiratory diseases called mushroom worker disease and farmer's lung, which develop in agricultural workers who by the nature of their work happen to breathe in significant amounts of actinomycete spores from hay, compost, etc. Some isolates of this organism are able to mineralize plastic disposals and other anthropogenic xenobiotics. Thermobifidaare of particular interest because they produce multiple thermostable enzymes involved in the degradation of lignocellulose.