Alienimonas californiensis gen. nov. sp. nov., a novel Planctomycete isolated from the kelp forest in Monterey Bay

  • Alje S. Boersma
  • Nicolai Kallscheuer
  • Sandra Wiegand
  • Patrick Rast
  • Stijn H. Peeters
  • Rob J. Mesman
  • Anja Heuer
  • Christian Boedeker
  • Mike S. M. Jetten
  • Manfred Rohde
  • Mareike Jogler
  • Christian JoglerEmail author
Original Paper


Planctomycetes are environmentally and biotechnologically important bacteria and are often found in association with nutrient-rich (marine) surfaces. To allow a more comprehensive understanding of planctomycetal lifestyle and physiology we aimed at expanding the collection of axenic cultures with new isolates. Here, we describe the isolation and genomic and physiological characterisation of strain CA12T obtained from giant bladder kelp (Macrocystis pyrifera) in Monterey Bay, California, USA. 16S rRNA gene sequence and whole genome-based phylogenetic analysis showed that strain CA12T clusters within the family Planctomycetaceae and that it has a high 16S rRNA sequence similarity (82.3%) to Planctomicrobium piriforme DSM 26348T. The genome of strain CA12T has a length of 5,475,215 bp and a G+C content of 70.1%. The highest growth rates were observed at 27 °C and pH 7.5. Using different microscopic methods, we could show that CA12T is able to divide by consecutive polar budding, without completing a characteristic planctomycetal lifestyle switch. Based on our data, we suggest that the isolated strain represents a novel species within a novel genus. We thus propose the name Alienimonas gen. nov. with Alienimonas californiensis sp. nov. as type species of the novel genus and CA12T as type strain of the novel species.


Cell division Marine bacteria Planctomycetes Primary metabolism Carbohydrate active enzymes 



We thank Anne-Kristin Kaster (KIT Karlsruhe, Germany) and Alfred M. Spormann (Stanford, USA) as well as the Aquarius Dive Shop Monterey and the Hopkins Marine Station for sampling support. We further thank Ina Schleicher for excellent SEM sample preparation and skillful technical assistance and the General Instrumentation department at Radboud University for help during the TEM analyses. For their support during strain deposition we thank the BCCM/LMG bacteria collection and Brian Tindall and Regine Fähnrich from the DSMZ.

Author contributions

ASB performed cultivations and wrote the manuscript; NK contributed to preparation of the text, analyzed the data and prepared the figures; SW and MJ performed the genomic and phylogenetic analysis; PR and AH isolated the strain and performed the initial strain cultivation and deposition; SHP and CB performed the light microscopic analysis; RJM performed the transmission electron microscopy; MSMJ contributed to text preparation and revised the manuscript; MR performed the electron microscopic analysis; CJ and MJ took the samples in Monterey Bay, CA; CJ supervised the study and all authors read and approved the final version of the manuscript.


This work was funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) grants KA 4967/1-1 and JO 893/4-1, and by the grant ALWOP.308 of the Nederlandse Organisatie voor Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek (NWO).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical statement

This article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the authors.

Supplementary material

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Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 2656 kb)
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Supplementary material 2 (AVI 1282 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alje S. Boersma
    • 1
  • Nicolai Kallscheuer
    • 1
  • Sandra Wiegand
    • 1
  • Patrick Rast
    • 2
  • Stijn H. Peeters
    • 1
  • Rob J. Mesman
    • 1
  • Anja Heuer
    • 2
  • Christian Boedeker
    • 2
  • Mike S. M. Jetten
    • 1
  • Manfred Rohde
    • 3
  • Mareike Jogler
    • 1
    • 2
  • Christian Jogler
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of MicrobiologyRadboud University NijmegenNijmegenThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Leibniz Institute DSMZ BraunschweigBrunswickGermany
  3. 3.Central Facility for MicroscopyHelmholtz Centre for Infection ResearchBrunswickGermany

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