Prevotella histicola

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Prevotella histicola


Domain: Bacteria

Phylum: Bacteroidetes

Class: Bacteroides

Order: Bacteroidales

Family: Prevotellaceae

Genus: Prevotella

Species: histicola


Introduction: Description and significance

Prevotella histicola are Gram-negative bacilli that are obligately anaerobic, vary in pigmentation and are non-motile. Prevotella histicola is found in the mucosal tissues of the human oral cavity and is considered a normal flora of the human oral microbiota.[2] It is generally commensal but are known to intrude the epithelial cells lining the cheeks. The human oral cavity is the threshold to the human body. Energy, food, enters the mouth, is broken down and is mixed with saliva prior to traveling through the remainder of the body. This aids in the possibility of spreading the bacteria from the mouth to other parts of the body. Prevotella is the largest genus, with approximately fifty species.[5] The Prevotella species are affiliated with many oral diseases and certain infections found in other areas of the human body.[2][3] The human oral cavity consist of many different habitats, including teeth, gingival sulcus, tongue, cheeks, hard and soft palates, and tonsils which are colonized by bacteria. The oral microbiome is comprised of over six hundred prevalent taxa at the species level, with distinct subsets predominating at different habitats.[5]


Prevotella histicola is found living in the dental plaque of the mouth. Dental plaque is simply the colonization of a microbial community on the teeth in the form of a biofilm. Dental plaque is thought to be beneficial to the host as it may aid in fighting off pathogens. It also may contribute to pathogenesis. More research is needed to draw more conclusions.[7]


Prevotella histicola grows well at 37 degrees Celsius. This particular strain is found living in the dental plaque of humans. While this strain of Prevotella is considered to be commensal, other strains of Prevotella are known to act as opportunistic pathogens, often penetrating tissues and establishing an infection of mucosal surfaces.[2]

Genome Structure Phylogeny

At this time little is known about Prevotella histicola. The most recent research reveals a genome size of 0.7 wide by 0.8-3.0 um long (and occasionally up to 5 um long) while after three days incubation, colonies are 1.5-2.0mm in diameter, circular, entire, convex, cream-coloured and opaque.[2] Some strains produce black colonies in the presence of metronidazole and other strains form bull's-eye colonies with reddish-brown pigmentation in the centers.[2]

Metabolism (energy & carbon source)

Cells are saccharolytic and are able to ferment fructose, glucose, lactose, maltose, mannose, raffinose and sucrose.[2] Major amounts of acetic acid and succinic acid and trace to minors amounts of isovaleric acid and lactic acid are produced as end products of metabolism in peptone/yeast extract/glucose broth.[2]

Strain Information

The type strain of Prevotella histicola is T05-04T (=DSM 19854T=CCUG 55407T)[2];jsessionid=8573FE8E465D1173B6BC26CE22061091.straininfo2



2. Downes et al. Prevotella histicola sp. nov., isolated from the human oral cavity. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF SYSTEMATIC AND EVOLUTIONARY MICROBIOLOGY, 2008; 58 (8): 1788 DOI: 10.1099/ijs.0.65656-0

3. Rudney, J. D., Chen, R. & Zhang, G. (2005). Steptococci dominate the diverse flora within buccal cells. J Dent Res 84, 1165-1171.



6. Avguštin, G., A. Ramšak, and M. Peterka. 2001. Systematics and Evolution of Ruminal Species of the GenusPrevotella. Folia Microbiologica, 46(1): 40-44.


Edited by (Shayron Minish Yeaw), student of Rachel Larsen at the University of Southern Maine