Mycobacterium canetti

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Mycobacterium canettii
Scientific classification
M. canettii
Binomial name
Mycobacterium canettii
D van Soolingen, et al., 1997

Mycobacterium canettii, a novel pathogenic taxon of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTBC), was first reported in 1969 by the French microbiologist Georges Canetti, for whom the organism has been named. It formed smooth and shiny colonies, which is highly exceptional for the MTBC. It was described in detail in 1997 on the isolation of a new strain from a 2-year-old Somali patient with lymphadenitis.[1] It did not differ from Mycobacterium tuberculosis in the biochemical tests and in its 16S rRNA sequence. It had shorter generation time than clinical isolates of M. tuberculosis and presented a unique, characteristic phenolic glycolipid and lipo-oligosaccharide. In 1998, Pfyffer described abdominal lymphatic TB in a 56-year-old Swiss man with HIV infection who lived in Kenya. Tuberculosis caused by M. canettii appears to be an emerging disease in the Horn of Africa.[2][3] A history of a stay to the region should induce the clinician to consider this organism promptly even if the clinical features of TB caused by M. canettii are not specific. The natural reservoir, host range, and mode of transmission of the organism are still unknown.[4]

M. canettii appears to be the ancestor of M. tuberculosis.[5]

Lane 1, Mycobacterium tuberculosis Mt 14323 (reference strain). Lane 2, M. canetti strain NZM 217/94


  1. van Soolingen D, Hoogenboezem T, de Haas PE, et al. (October 1997). "A novel pathogenic taxon of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex, Canetti: characterization of an exceptional isolate from Africa". Int. J. Syst. Bacteriol. 47 (4): 1236–45. doi:10.1099/00207713-47-4-1236. PMID 9336935.
  2. Pfyffer GE, Auckenthaler R, van Embden JD, van Soolingen D (1998). "Mycobacterium canettii, the smooth variant of M. tuberculosis, isolated from a Swiss patient exposed in Africa". Emerging Infect. Dis. 4 (4): 631–4. doi:10.3201/eid0404.980414. PMC 2640258. PMID 9866740.
    Koeck, J.-L.; Fabre, M.; Simon, F.; Daffé, M.; Garnotel, É.; Matan, A. B.; Gérôme, P.; Bernatas, J.-J.; et al. (2011). "Clinical characteristics of the smooth tubercle bacilli Mycobacterium canettii infection suggest the existence of an environmental reservoir". Clinical Microbiology and Infection. 17 (7): 1013–9. doi:10.1111/j.1469-0691.2010.03347.x. PMID 20831613.
  3. Fabre, Michel; Hauck, Yolande; Soler, Charles; Koeck, Jean-Louis; Van Ingen, Jakko; Van Soolingen, Dick; Vergnaud, Gilles; Pourcel, Christine (2010). "Molecular characteristics of 'Mycobacterium canettii' the smooth Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacilli". Infection, Genetics and Evolution. 10 (8): 1165–73. doi:10.1016/j.meegid.2010.07.016. PMID 20692377.
  4. Miltgen, Jean; Morillon, Marc; Koeck, Jean-Louis; Varnerot, Anne; Briant, Jean-François; Nguyen, Gilbert; Verrot, Denis; Bonnet, Daniel; Vincent, Véronique (2002). "Two Cases of Pulmonary Tuberculosis Caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis subsp. canetti". Emerging Infectious Diseases. 8 (11): 1350–2. doi:10.3201/eid0811.020017. PMC 2738533. PMID 12453369.
  5. Blouin Y, Cazajous G, Dehan C, Soler C, Vong R, Hassan MO, Hauck Y, Boulais C, Andriamanantena D, Martinaud C, Martin É, Pourcel C, Vergnaud G (January 2014). "Progenitor "Mycobacterium canettii" clone responsible for lymph node tuberculosis epidemic, Djibouti". Emerging Infectious Diseases. 20 (1): 21–28. doi:10.3201/eid2001.130652. PMC 3884719. PMID 24520560.

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