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Fluorescence In-Situ Hybridization image of ‘‘A. phosphatis’’ (Blackall, 2002).

Kingdom: Bacteria

Phylum: Proteobacteria

Class: Betaproteobacteria

Order: unclassified Betaproteobacteria

Family: Candidatus Accumulibacter


Not much is know about Accumulibacter besides the fact that it is a polyphosphate-accumulating organism. Through sequencing scientists haven't even been able to determine which Order Accumulibacter is from. It is known to be a betaproteobacteria closely related to Rhodocyclus.

Ecology and Significance

Accumulibacter is mostly found in wastewater treatment plants where it acts as a polyphosphate-accumulating bacteria. It is one of the few microbes that can remove excess phosphorus from wastewater. In the wastewater treatment facilities it uses a method known as Enhanced Biological Phosphorus Removal (EBPR).

Genome Structure

Not much is know about the genome of Accumulibacter as the have been no successful attempts to culture this bacteria and thus no way to sequence the DNA. This has resulted in not even the Order of this microbe being able to be identified.



Due to the fact that Accumulibacter hasn't been able to be grown in culture there isn't much known about its metabolism. Some studies show that Accumulibacter is able to thrive under various conditions in wastewater plants. Accumulibacter must be able to thrive in both aerobic and anaerobic conditions because EBPR takes place in both aerobic and anaerobic conditions.


[1] Golyshin, Peter N. “Genome Sequence Completed of Alcanivorax borkumensis, a Hydrocarbon-degrading Bacterium That Plays a Global Role in Oil Removal from Marine Systems.” 3 (2003): 215-20. Print.



[1] [2F] [2] [3F] [3] [4F] [4] [5F] [Original Figure. Author: Pawan Dhaliwal] [6F] 

[7F] [5]


Page authored by Lukas Waldmann, student of Prof. Katherine Mcmahon at University of Wisconsin - Madison.