RANK: Genus

TAXONOMY: Bacteria -> Terrabacteria group -> Firmicutes -> Bacilli -> Lactobacillales -> Lactobacillaceae -> Pediococcus


Pediococcus is a genus of Gram-positive lactic acid bacteria, placed within the family of Lactobacillaceae. They usually occur in pairs or tetrads, and divide along two planes of symmetry, as do the other lactic acid cocci genera Aerococcus and Tetragenococcus. They are purely homofermentative. Pediococcus dextrinicus has recently been reassigned to the genus Lactobacillus. Pediococcus is, along with other lactic acid bacteria such as Leuconostoc and Lactobacillus, responsible for the fermentation of cabbage, making it sauerkraut. In this process, the sugars in fresh cabbage are fermented to lactic acid, which gives sauerkraut a sour flavour and good keeping qualities. Pediococcus bacteria are usually considered contaminants of beer and wine, although their presence is sometimes desired in beer styles such as Lambic. Certain Pediococcus isolates produce diacetyl which gives a buttery or butterscotch aroma to some wines (such as Chardonnay) and a few styles of beer.

Nine species are recognized within this genus, including Pediococcus acidilactici (Lindner, 1887; Skerman et al., 1980), Pediococcus claussenii (Dobson et al., 2002), Pediococcus cellicola (Zhang et al., 2005), Pediococcus damnosus (Balcke, 1884; Claussen, 1903; Skerman et al., 1980), Pediococcus dextrinicus (Back, 1978a; Coster and White, 1964; Skerman et al., 1980), Pediococcus inopinatus (Back, 1978a, 1988), Pediococcus parvulus (Günther and White, 1961; Skerman et al., 1980), Pediococcus pentosaceus (Mees, 1934; Skerman et al., 1980) with the subspecies Pediococcus pentosaceus subsp. pentosaceus and Pediococcus pentosaceus subsp. intermedius, and Pediococcus stilesii (Franz et al., 2006). The Pediococcus type species is Pediococcus damnosus (Claussen, 1903). Judicial Opinion 52 states that this generic name is conserved over Pediococcus (Balcke, 1884) and all earlier objective synonyms. Erroneously, the genus name Pediococcus (Balcke, 1884) has been cited in the Approved Lists of Bacterial Names (Skerman, McGowan and Sneath, 1980) and in the Amended Edition of the Approved Lists of Bacterial Names (Euzéby, 1998; Skerman, McGowan and Sneath, 1989). These species can clearly be distinguished on the basis of DNA–DNA similarity.

DNA G+C content (mol%): 35–44 (Tm). Type species: Pediococcus damnosus

This genus contains microbial species that can reside in the human gastrointestinal tract. [PMC 4262072]

Gut associated
Beta Galactosidase