Isolation and Characterization of Medically Important Aerobic Actinomycetes in Soil of Iran (2006 - 2007)

Mohammad Reza Aghamirian1, Seyed Amir Ghiasian2, *
1 Medical Parasitology and Mycology Department, Qazvin University of Medical Sciences and Health Services, Qazvin, Iran
2 Medical Parasitology and Mycology Department, School of Medicine, Hamadan University of Medical Sciences and Health Services, Hamadan, Iran

Article Metrics

CrossRef Citations:
Total Statistics:

Full-Text HTML Views: 3596
Abstract HTML Views: 3474
PDF Downloads: 794
Total Views/Downloads: 7864
Unique Statistics:

Full-Text HTML Views: 1671
Abstract HTML Views: 1888
PDF Downloads: 548
Total Views/Downloads: 4107

Creative Commons License
© Aghamirian and Ghiasian; Licensee Bentham Open.

open-access license: This is an open access article licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted, non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the work is properly cited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Medical Parasitology and Mycology Department, School of Medicine, Hamadan University of Medical Sciences and Health Services, PO Box 65155-518 Hamadan, Iran; Tel: +98- 811 8276295; Fax: +98- 811 8276299; E-mail:


The aerobic actinomycetes are a large group of soil-inhabiting bacteria that occur worldwide. Some of them are the main cause of two important diseases, nocardiosis and actinomycetoma. To identify the prevalence and geographic distribution of aerobic actinomycetes in soil of Qazvin province, a study was carried out during 2006-2007. In this study, the incidence and diversity of medically important aerobic actinomycetes was determined in 300 soil samples of different parts of Qazvin. The suspensions of superficial soil samples were prepared by adding of normal saline, streptomycin and chloramphenicol and the supernatants were cultured on brain-heart infusion agar and Sabouraud's dextrose agar contain cycloheximide. The isolated microorganisms were examined by Gram and acid-fast stains and were identified biochemically and morphologically. Of 96 aerobic actinomycetes isolates identified, Actinomadura madurae and Streptomyces somaliensis were the most frequently isolated species each representing 19.8% of isolates, followed by Nocardia asteroides (15.6%), N. otitidiscaviarum (9.4%), N. brasiliensis (7.3%), A. peletieri, S. griseus, and Nocardia spp. (each 5.2%), and N. transvalensis, Nocardiopsis dassonvillei, Actinomadura spp. and Streptomyces spp. (each 3.1%). To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report on epidemiological investigation of medically important aerobic actinomycetes in soil samples from Iran. In recent years, mycetoma and nocardiosis have been increasingly reported in Iran. The results showed that medically important actinomycetes occur in the environment of Iran and soil could be potential source of actinomycotic infections.

Key Words: Aerobic actinomycetes, soil, Qazvin, Iran.