Enterococcus faecium

From Biology-Online Dictionary | Biology-Online Dictionary



A gram-positive facultative anaerobe bacterium involved in nosocomial infections in human including bacteremia, endocarditis, surgical wounds and urinary tract infections.


Enterococcus faecium has a colony size of at least 1-2mm in length occurs in pairs or chains with thick peptidoglycan layer and circular DNA containing several plasmids which is capable ofconjugation via releasing sex pheromones. It has three types of conjugation to obtain resistance in drugs such as pheromone-responsive plasmids, conjugative transposons and broad host-range plasmids.

Enterococcus faecium metabolism is through fermentation since it is deficient of respiratory chain and Krebs’s cycle however it is facultative anaerobes that can make ATP by respiration if oxygen is available but used fermentation in absence of oxygen. It is normally inhabit in gastrointestinal tract of various animals as well as in vaginal tract and oral cavity which able to grow in temperatures ranging from 10’C-45’C either basic or acidic conditions.

Enterococcus faecium is known as super-bug because it colonizes various organs including skin and gastrointestinal tract which able to survive and live for a long time in a lifeless objects thus, considered as a nasty pathogen. It also extremely drug resistance including penicillin, gentamicin, vancomycin, tetracycline, teicoplanin and erythromycin.

Former name: Streptococcus faecium

Scientific classifications:

Kingdom: Bacteria
Phylum: Firmicutes
Class: Bacilli
Order: Lactobacillales
Family: Enterococcaceae
Genus: Enterococcus
Species: Enterococcus faecium 

See also:


Nosocomial infections