Lutibacter maritimus

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Higher order taxa

Kingdom; Bacteria Phylum; Bacteriodetes Class; Flavobacteria Order; Flavobacteriales; Flavobacteriaceae Genus: Lutibacter


Genus species: Lutibacter maritimus

Description and significance

Lutibacter maritimus is an aerobic, gram negative, rod shaped bacteria belonging to the family Flavobacteriaceae. It is non-motile, non-flagellated, non-gliding and measures to be 0.3–0.8 µm in diameter and 1.0–5.0 µm in length. Carotenoid pigments are produced. Maltose is used as the sole carbon and energy source. The major fatty acids consist of iso-C15 : 0 and C15 : 1v6c[1]. L. maritimus prefer to grow at neutral pH levels of 7.0-8.0, but can grow at a lower pH of 5.0. It also prefers temperatures between 20-30°C, but can grow at temperatures as low as 4°C or as high as 37°C. In addition, growth can occur with a NaCl concentration between 0.5%-5.0% but a 2.0% concentration is preferred.


Lutibacter maritimus was first isolated from a tidal flat sediment from the west coast of Korea. At the time, it’s genus Lutibacter, comprised of a single known species, Lutibacter litoralis, which was also first isolated from a tidal flat sediment[2]. Although they are found in similar environments, and share optimum growth ranges for pH, temperature and NaCl concentration, L. litoralis has smaller growth ranges for each. Growth for L. litoralis occurs at 5–30°C, at pH values of 7-8 and at salt concentrations of 1–5%[2], while growth for L. maritimus occurs at 4-37°C, at pH values of 5-8 and at salt concentrations of 0.5%-5.0%. The pH growth range beginning at a pH of 5 for L. maritimus allows for growth in much more acidic conditions than L. litoralis. The temperature range of 4-37°C for L. maritimus allows for growth at warmer and slightly colder water temperatures, while the salt concentration range of 0.5%-5.0% allows for growth at a lower salinity level. L. maritimus’ overall wider growth ranges for pH, temperature and NaCl concentration suggests it is capable of withstanding more diverse environmental conditions and therefore, serves as environmental advantages over L. litoralis.

Antibiotic Characteristics

Differences in antibiotic susceptibility also helped distinguish Lutibacter maritimus as a separate strain from Lutibacter litoralis. Susceptibility was tested on MA plates using a variety of antibiotic discs[1]. Results show both strains were susceptible to carbenicillin, chloramphenicol, lincomycin and oleandomycin. However, L. maritimus also showed resistance to cephalothin, streptomycin, penicillin G and tetracycline, while, L. litoralis showed susceptibility.


1. Sooyeon Park, So-Jung Kang, Tae-Kwang Oh and Jung-Hoon Yoon "Lutibacter maritimus sp. nov., isolated from a tidal flat sediment". International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology. 2010. Volume 60. No. 3 p. 610-614.

2. Dong H. Choi and Byung C. Cho "Lutibacter litoralis gen. nov., sp. nov., a marine bacterium of the family Flavobacteriaceae isolated from tidal flat sediment". International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology. 2006. Volume 56. No. 4 p. 771-776.

Edited by (Susan Duong), student of Rachel Larsen at the University of Southern Maine