Bacteroides finegoldii

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Higher order taxa

Bacteria; Bacteroidetes (phylum); Bacteroidetes (class); Bacteroidales (order); Bacteroidaceae (family); Bacteroides (genus)


Bacteroides finegoldii


General Background

Bacteroides finegoldii is a strictly anaerobic, Gram-negative rod bacteria that occurs in human feces. The Bacteroides genus contains species that maintain a generally beneficial relationship with the host when retained in the gut. Genomic and proteomic analyses have added to the understanding of the manner in which Bacteroides species adapt to, and thrive in, the human gut. However, the Bacteroides genus also contains species that when they exist outside the gut microbiome can be pathogenic and found in most anaerobic wounds.

Relatedness to other species in the Bacteroides genus

16S rRNA gene sequence similarities show that B. finegoldii's closest neighbors are Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron and Bacteroides ovatus, both of which are members of the human gut microbiome. Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron can also be a pathogen frequently found in open wounds.


Bacteroides finegoldii is non-spore-forming, non-motile, Gram-negative rod bacteria, about 0.80 µm wide and 1.5-4.5 µm long and occuring singly.

Molecular structure

The major fatty acids are anteiso-C15:0 (31.8–36.2%) and iso- C17:0 3-OH (13.1–14.5%). The DNA G+C content is 42.4–43.0 mol%.

Metabolism and growth

The optimum temperature for growth is about 37 C. B. finegoldii produces acid from the metabolism of glucose, lactose, sucrose, maltose, salicin, xylose, arabinose, cellobiose, mannose, raffinose and rhamnose. The bacteria grows in the presence of bile.

Current Research

As Bacteroides finegoldii is found in the feces of humans, it has been the subject of several recent research projects investigating the human stool microbome and metabolome. It has been reported that Bacteroides finegoldii is present in the human stool microbome, but what exactly its role may be in this microbiome is still unclear. However, emerging research is suggesting that it may play a role in maintaining a healthy human stool and gut microbome. Research has found that it may play a role in maintaining a healthy colon, as well as potentially acting as a possible probiotic to help patients recover from illnesses such as inflammatory bowel disease and Clostridium difficile infection.


Bakir, M., Kitahara, M., Sakamato, M., Matsumoto, M., and Benno, Y. "Bacteroides finegoldii gen. nov., sp. nov., isolated from human faeces". International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology. 2006. Volume 56. p. 931–935.

Shahinas, D., Silverman, M., Sittler, T., Chiu, C., Kim, P., Allen-Vercoe, E., Weese, S., Wong, A.,Low, D., Pillai, D. "Toward an understanding of changes in diversity associated with fecal microbiome transplantation based on 16S rRNA gene deep sequencing". mBio. 2012. Volume 3. p. 00338-12.

Weir, T., Manter, K., Sheflin, A., Barnett, A., and Heuberger, A. "Stool Microbiome and Metabolome Differences between Colorectal Cancer Patients and Healthy Adults". PloS One. 2013. Volume 8. p. 70803.

Wexler, H. "Bacteroides: the Good, the Bad, and the Nitty-Gritty". Clinical Microbiology Review. 2007. Volume 20. p. 593–621.

Zitomersky, N., Atkinson, B., Franklin, S., Mitchell, P., Snapper, S., Comstock, L., and Bousvaros, A. "Characterization of adherent bacteroidales from intestinal biopsies of children and young adults with inflammatory bowel disease". PloS One. 2013. Volume 8. p. 63686.

Edited by (Jenna Lane), student of Rachel Larsen at the University of Southern Maine