Myxobacteria: A Most Peculiar Group of Social Prokaryotes

  • Hans Reichenbach
Part of the Springer Series in Molecular Biology book series (SSMOL)


We are approaching the centenary of the discovery of the myxobacteria as a group of organisms with an unusual and, at the time of their discovery, quite incredible life cycle (Thaxter 1892). This may thus be a good occasion to summarize our knowledge, patchy as it is, about these fascinating bacteria. In the last few years a growing number of microbiologists, molecular biologists, and microbial geneticists have become attracted by the myxobacteria, because these peculiar prokaryotes provide a unique system for studying the molecular basis of development and social interactions. Most of the morphogenetic studies and all of the genetics have been carried out on one particular organism, Myxococcus xanthus, so that this book will deal mainly with that species. In this chapter, however, I shall discuss the myxobacteria in a more general framework.


Fruiting Body Agar Surface Chamber Culture Fruiting Body Formation Fruiting Process 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hans Reichenbach
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of MicrobiologyGBF, Gesellschaft für Biotechnologische ForschungBraunschweigFederal Republic of Germany

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