Bifidobacterium asteroides
Cultural characteristics
Biochemical characters
Phylum “Actinobacteria”, Class Actinobacteria, Order Bifidobacteriales, Family Bifidobacteriaceae, Genus Bifidobacterium,  
Bifidobacterium asteroides
Scardovi and Trovatelli 1969.

Old synonym:
Bacillus constellatus White 1921.
Cells are 2-2.5 µm long, pear shaped or slightly curved and tend to have pointed
ends; frequently arranged radially in star-like groups.
Nutritional or CO
2 deficiencies, or growth with certain sugars, may induce clavate or
spatulate cells with occasional central swellings, irregular or cross-like branchings in
the central part of the cell body.
Colonies are convex, smooth, with entire edge and glistening surface; consistency is
such that entire colony is removed by needle and can hardly be emulsified in water.
Deep colonies are lens shaped.
Growth in fluid culture tends to adhere to the glass
walls and to leave the liquid clear
biotin, pyridoxine, nicotinic acid, riboflavin, thiamine
and pantothenate may be required
. Optimum growth temperature is 35 ºC. Can grow
at 22 ºC, variable at 20, 21 and 42 ºC, but not at 45 ºC. Grows at pH 5-9, optimally at
pH 6. Anaerobic, CO
2 is required for growth.
Isolated from the hind gut of live honey bees Apis mellifera L., Apis cerana, Apis mellifera subsp. ligustica.
Non-pathogenic for man or animals.
  1. Biavati B, Mattarelli P, 2012.  Genus I. Bifidobacterium Orla-Jensen 1924. In: Parte et al. (ed). Bergey’s manual of systematic
    bacteriology: The Actinobacteria, Part A and B. Springer, New York, 171-206.
  2. Rogosa M. 1975. Genus III. Bifidobacterium Orla-Jensen 1924. In: Buchanan RE & Gibbons NE (ed). Bergey’s Manual of
    Determinative Bacteriology, Eight Edition, The Williams & Wilkins Company, Baltimore, 669-676.
  3. Killer J, Kopecny J, Mrazek J, Koppova I, Havlik J, Benada O and Kott T, 2011. Bifidobacterium actinocoloniiforme sp. nov. and
    Bifidobacterium bohemicum sp. nov., from the bumblebee digestive tract. Int J Syst Evol Microbiol 61, 1315-1321.
  4. Chen J, Wang J, Zheng H, 2021. Characterization of Bifidobacterium apousia sp. nov., Bifidobacterium choladohabitans sp. nov.,
    and Bifidobacterium polysaccharolyticum sp. nov., three novel species of the genus Bifidobacterium from honey bee gut. Syst Appl
    Microbiol 44, 126247.
Positive results for alpha-arabinosidase, arginine arylamidase, alpha- and beta-galactosidase, alpha- and beta-glucosidase, glycine
arylamidase, histidine arylamidase, leucine arylamidase, phenylalanine arylamidase, proline arylamidase, serine arylamidase,
tyrosine arylamidase, acid production from amygdalin, arbutin,
esculin, D-fructose, glucose, gentibiose, D-ribose, salicin, sucrose, and

Negative results for alkaline phosphatase, arginine dihydrolase, catalase, N-acetyl-beta-glucosaminidase, beta-glucuronidase, indole
production, nitrate reduction, oxidase, pyroglutamic acid arylamidase, urease, acid production from adonitol, D-arabinose, D- and L-
arabitol, dextran, dulcitol, erythritol, D- and L-fucose, D-glucosamine, D-glucuronate, glycerol, inositol, inulin, D-lyxose, D-mannitol, N-
acetylglucosamine, alpha-methyl-D-mannoside, pectin, porcine gastric mucin, rhamnose, D-sorbitol, L-sorbose, starch, D-tagatose,
trehalose, xylitol, and xylan.
Ammonia is not produced from arginine.

Variable results for alanine arylamidase, acid production from L-arabinose, amylopectin, amylose, cellobiose, alpha-fucosidase, D-
galactosamine, D-galactose, gluconate, D-lactose
(weak), D-mannose, melezitose, maltose, melibiose, methyl alpha-D-
raffinose, turanose (weak), and D-xylose.
(c) Costin Stoica
Culture media
Biochemical tests
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