Paenibacillus sp. VT-400

Paenibacillus sp. VT-400 in Patients with Hematological Malignancies

Paenibacillus sp. VT-400 is a novel spore-forming species that was isolated from the oral cavity of patients with acute leukemia. The organism colonizes the oral cavity and is an important pathogen of pneumonia and potentially other opportunistic infections, particularly in immunocompromised hosts. Indeed, we demonstrated that Paenibacillus sp. VT-400 is capable of inducing pneumonia associated with disseminated infections that result in significant levels of mortality. Notably, prophylactic treatments, such as oral rinses, are ineffective in eradicating the spores of strain VT-400, and are therefore insufficient to reduce the bacterial load within the oropharynx and prevent aspiration pneumonia.
Our data suggest that the organism presents genetic features of pathogenic bacteria, and can trigger life-threatening infections in at-risk patients, particularly those with underlying pathologies such as hematological malignancies.


Tetz G, Tetz V (2016). Genomic characterization and assessment of the virulence and antibiotic resistance of the novel species Paenibacillus sp. strain VT-400, a potentially  pathogenic bacterium in the oral cavity of patients with hematological  malignancies. Gut pathogens, 8(1), 1.

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Tetz G, Tetz V, Vecherkovskaya M. (2015). Complete Genome Sequence of Paenibacillus sp. strain VT-400, Isolated from the Saliva of a Child with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. Genome Announcements,  3(4), e00894-15.

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