Degree Name

MS (Master of Science)



Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Bert C. Lampson

Committee Members

Phillip R. Scheuerman, Ranjan N. Chakraborty


Rhodococci are notable for their ability to degrade a variety of natural and xenobiotic compounds. Recently, interest in Rhodococcus has increased due to the discovery of a large number of genes for secondary metabolism. Only a few secondary metabolites have been characterized from the rhodococci (including 3 recently described antibiotics). Twenty-four new Rhodococcus strains were isolated from soils in East Tennessee using acetonitrile enrichment culturing and identified using 16S rRNA analysis. Forty-seven Rhodococcus strains were screened for antibiotic production using a growth inhibition assay. One strain, MTM3W5.2, had 90% similarity to the Rhodococcus opacus 16S rRNA gene sequence and produced a large zone of inhibition against R. erythropolis and a large number of closely related species. The antimicrobial compound produced by MTM3W5.2 had a large MW of 911.5452 Da and acts much like a bacteriocin but no amino acids were detected in this molecule based on TLC analysis.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.

Included in

Bacteriology Commons