Accurate and universal delineation of prokaryotic species

Mende DR, Sunagawa S, Zeller G, Bork P, Nat Methods 10 (9) :881-4 (2013).


The exponentially increasing number of sequenced genomes necessitates fast, accurate, universally applicable and automated approaches for the delineation of prokaryotic species. We developed specI (species identification tool;, a method to group organisms into species clusters based on 40 universal, single-copy phylogenetic marker genes. Applied to 3,496 prokaryotic genomes, specI identified 1,753 species clusters. Of 314 discrepancies with a widely used taxonomic classification, >62% were resolved by literature support.