Characterization of beta-hemolytic streptococci isolated from southern sea otters (Enhydra lutris nereis) stranded along the California coast

Denise Imai, Spencer Jang, Melissa Miller, Patricia A Conrad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Scopus citations


The goal of this study was to characterize the beta-hemolytic streptococci cultured from southern sea otters (Enhydra lutris nereis) stranded off the coast of California (USA) and to verify identifications made using the Lancefield system. Lancefield serotyping and biochemical analysis alone was inadequate for isolate characterization. Final identification was based on sequence analysis of a portion of the 16s ribosomal RNA gene from 12 of the 35 total isolates. The majority of isolates (10 of 12; 83.3%) were Streptococcus phocae and reacted with Lancefield group G and F antisera or were less frequently untypeable. The remaining isolates belonging to Lancefield group G were identified as S. dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis (2 of 12; 16.7%). This is the first report of S. phocae in southern sea otters and further evidence of S. phocae expressing cell surface antigens compatible with Lancefield group G typing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)378-381
Number of pages4
JournalVeterinary Microbiology
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - May 12 2009



  • Beta-hemolytic streptococci
  • Enhydra lutris nereis
  • Marine mammal
  • Southern sea otters
  • Streptococcus phocae

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • veterinary(all)

Cite this