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16S rRNA RefSeq: V15.23    Genomic RefSeq: V10.1
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Treponema denticola (HMT-584)
Taxon Description:
T. denticola is a member of Group II one of the 10 phylogenetic groups of oral treponemes [12].

Disease Associations:
Known as a member of the 'red complex' and is strongly associated with periodontal disease [4]. Also associated with endodontic lesions.

Prevalence and Source:
Frequently isolated from human subgingival plaque especially from subjects with periodontitis. Reported to be present in chimpanzees
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Class: Spirochaetia
Order: Spirochaetales
Genus: Treponema
Species:Treponema denticola
Status: Named - Cultured
Type/Reference Strain: ATCC 35405
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Former Names or Synonyms:
Phylum: Spirochaetes
Spirillum dentium
Spirochaeta ambigua
Spirochaeta comandonii
Spirochaeta dentium
Spirochaeta microdentium
Spirochaeta orthodonta
Spirochaete denticola
Spirochaete dentium
Spironema dentium
Treponema ambiguum
Treponema comandonii
Treponema dentium
Treponema dentium-stenogyratum
Treponema microdentium
Treponema orthodontum
16S rRNA Reference Sequences:    view in
RefSeq tree
RefSeq ID: 584_1236
RefSeq ID: 584_D012

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Genotypic Description:
Phenotypic Characteristics:
Obligately anaerobic catalase negative helically coiled with translational motility. Will creep on solid surfaces such as agar media or glass. Cells are Gram-negative 0.2 um by 6-16 um with a 2-4-2 periplasmic flagellar arrangement. G+C content is 37-38 mol%Ferments amino acids (alanine cysteine glycine and serine) with acetate as the major endproduct with lesser amounts of lactic acid succinic acid and formic acid. Ammonia is produced from amino acids. Arginine can serve as an energy source. Glucose can be degraded using the Embden-Meyerhof pathway [3] but not by the glycolytic pathway. Strains are resistant to rifampicin.
Cultivability: Anaerobic growth in peptone-yeast extract serum containing medium. White diffuse colonies (0.3 to 1 mm) in diameter on solid media after 2 weeks incubation.
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Microbial Ecology
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NCBI Taxon ID: 158 [Link to NCBI]
PubMed Searches:
[NCBI PubMed Link]
[NCBI (Entrez) Nucleotide Link]
[NCBI (Entrez) Protein Link]
Number of
Genome Sequences:
18 See List
Phylogenetic Trees:
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[1] Dewhirst FE, Tamer MA, Ericson RE, Lau CN, Levanos VA, Boches SK, Galvin JL, Paster BJ. The diversity of periodontal spirochetes by 16S rRNA analysis. Oral Microbiol Immunol. 2000 Jun;15(3):196-202
[2] Hespell RB, Canale-Parola E. Amino acid and glucose fermentation by Treponema denticola. Arch Mikrobiol. 1971;78(3):234-51
[3] Chan EC, Siboo R, Keng T, Psarra N, Hurley R, Cheng SL, Iugovaz I. Treponema denticola (ex Brumpt 1925) sp. nov., nom. rev., and identification of new spirochete isolates from periodontal pockets. Int J Syst Bacteriol. 1993 Apr;43(2):196-203
[4] Socransky SS, Haffajee AD, Cugini MA, Smith C, Kent RL Jr. Microbial complexes in subgingival plaque. J Clin Periodontol. 1998 Feb;25(2):134-44