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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter July 9, 2018

The natural environment as a reservoir of pathogenic and non-pathogenic Acinetobacter species

Mary A. Adewoyin EMAIL logo and Anthony I. Okoh


Acinetobacter is a genus of Gram-negative bacteria, which are oxidase-negative, exhibiting a twitching motility under a magnifying lens. Besides being important soil microorganisms, due to their contribution to the soil fertility, Acinetobacter species, particularly A. baumannii, hold a prominent place within the genus because, it is the most virulent among the other species, causing varying degrees of human infections in clinical environments. However, results of different research have shown that Acinetobacter species can be isolated from such natural environments as surface water, wastewater and sewage, healthy human skin, plant, animal and food material as well as domestic appliances. The presence of some other Acinetobacter species in the natural environment has been associated with beneficial roles including soil improvement, detoxification of oil spillages and as microflora in human and plant bodies. In this paper, we carried out an overview of various natural ecological niches as reservoirs of pathogenic and non-pathogenic Acinetobacter species.

  1. Research funding: This study was supported by National Research Foundation (NRF), South Africa and The World Academy of Science (TWAS), Italy.

  2. Conflict of interest: Authors state no conflict of interest.

  3. Informed consent: Informed consent is not applicable.

  4. Ethical approval: The conducted research is not related to either human or animal use.


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Received: 2017-10-05
Accepted: 2018-05-31
Published Online: 2018-07-09
Published in Print: 2018-09-25

©2018 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston

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