Mycobacterium talmoniae sp. Nov., a slowly growing mycobacterium isolated from human respiratory samples

Rebecca M. Davidson, Mary Ann DeGroote, Jamie L. Marola, Sarah Buss, Victoria Jones, Michael R. McNeil, Alison G. Freifeld, L. Elaine Epperson, Nabeeh A. Hasan, Mary Jackson, Peter C. Iwen, Max Salfinger, Michael Strong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


A novel slowly growing, non-chromogenic species of the class Actinobacteria was isolated from a human respiratory sample in Nebraska, USA, in 2012. Analysis of the internal transcribed spacer sequence supported placement into the genus Mycobacterium with high sequence similarity to a previously undescribed strain isolated from a patient respiratory sample from Oregon, USA, held in a collection in Colorado, USA, in 2000. The two isolates were subjected to phenotypic testing and whole genome sequencing and found to be indistinguishable. The bacteria were acid-fast stain-positive, rod-shaped and exhibited growth after 7-10 days on solid media at temperatures ranging from 25 to 42°C. Colonies were non-pigmented, rough and slightly raised. Analyses of matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization time-of-flight profiles showed no matches against a reference library of 130 mycobacterial species. Full-length 16S rRNA gene sequences were identical for the two isolates, the average nucleotide identity (ANI) between their genomes was 99.7 % and phylogenetic comparisons classified the novel mycobacteria as the basal most species in the slowly growing Mycobacterium clade. Mycobacterium avium is the most closely related species based on rpoB gene sequence similarity (92 %), but the ANI between the genomes was 81.5 %, below the suggested cut-off for differentiating two species (95 %). Mycolic acid profiles were more similar to M. avium than to Mycobacterium simiae or Mycobacterium abscessus. The phenotypic and genomic data support the conclusion that the two related isolates represent a novel Mycobacterium species for which the name Mycobacterium talmoniae sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is NE-TNMC-100812T (=ATCC BAA-2683T=DSM 46873T).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number001998
Pages (from-to)2640-2645
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2017


  • Genomics
  • Mycobacteria
  • Respiratory sample

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics


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