All You Need To Know About Enterobacter/Klebsiella Aerogenes

Enterobacter aerogenes, otherwise known as Klebsiella aerogenes, is a Gram-negative rod-shaped bacteria. It is also referred to as Klebsiella pneumoniae as a general description of the entire species.

All You Need To Know About Enterobacter/Klebsiella Aerogenes

In this article, you will find out everything you need to know about Enterobacter Aerogenes.

History Of Enterobacter Aerogenes

Enterobacter Aerogenes is a rod-shaped bacteria with round ends that appear Gram-negative when tested for Gram-staining.

The bacterium is roughly one to three microns in length. Due to investigations that have been conducted, Enterobacter Aerogenes has been observed to have a closer relation to Klebsiella pneumoniae than other members of the Enterobacter species.

Due to this, it was renamed Klebsiella aerogenes. 

Classification Of Enterobacter Aerogenes

The name Klebsiella aerogenes was originally used for any non-motile, capsulate, gas-productive strains that were found in human feces and water.

Some biochemically atypical Klebsiella strains were isolated from the respiratory tract of both humans and animals and were designated Klebsiella pneumoniae.

Nowadays, that is how the species as a whole is now referred to when discussing the species. Klebsiella aerogenes is now a subspecies of Klebsiella pneumoniae

Occurrences Of Enterobacter Aerogenes In Nature

Enterobacter Aerogenes are widespread in nature. They can be found in the intestinal tracts of animals and can therefore be found in water, soil, and sewage.

They may also be found in plants. Many members of the Enterobacter species are opportunistic pathogens in people, with Enterobacter Aerogenes among this selection.

Due to this, they can cause a variety of infections, especially if they get exposed in nosocomial settings. 

Enterobacter Aerogenes Infections

Enterobacter aerogenes can cause infections if it is found in a hospital setting. They can spread through cross-contamination from surgery or if there is consistent hospital treatment for catheter-using patients.

The issues arising from an Enterobacter aerogenes infection include risks of adult meningitis, gastrointestinal infections, soft tissue infections, respiratory infections, and UTIs. 

Patients who are more at risk of these infections are those with compromised immune sections and anyone who has undergone recent surgical procedures.

Due to being nosocomial, healthy people aren’t typically at risk of Enterobacter aerogenes infections. 

Typically, you will find that Enterobacter aerogenes is more widely spread through contact with another person and only occasionally through environmental contamination.

Many infections in a healthcare environment are caused by contaminated hands of carers or doctors, which is why hygiene maintenance is essential.

Treatment Of Enterobacter Aerogenes Infections

Due to their Gram-negative status, Enterobacter aerogenes is highly resistant to antibiotics. The best way to counter Enterobacter aerogenes infections is by being proactive in preventing them from occurring.

To ensure that infections are prevented, it’s essential that hospitals follow strict decontamination procedures and carefully ensure that there is no cross-contamination of any catheters or implanted devices.

Many members of the Enterobacter family are resistant to non-beta-lactam antibiotics such as fluoroquinolones.

Enterobacter aerogenes is resistant to both ciprofloxacin and has the capability to become resistant to multiple drugs. Each of these variations are classed separately from one another and are differentiated as such.

Generally, Enterobacter aerogenes have a wide range of abilities to develop resistance to antibiotics more than other strains. 

Is Enterobacter Aerogenes Capable Of Nitrogen Fixation?

When living freely, members of the Enterobacter species are capable of nitrogen fixation.

Notably, Enterobacter cloacae are involved in symbiotic nitrogen fixation in plants isolated from root nodules of certain crops, including wheat, sorghum, and rhizospheres of rice.

Gram-Negative Status

All members of the Enterobacter and Klebsiella species are classed as Gram-negative and will appear as such when a Gram staining test is performed on them.

Due to this, they are resistant to antibiotics and are dangerous when they occur in a hospitalized setting or if they infect an immunocompromised patient.

Due to this, preventing outbreaks of Enterobacter aerogenes bacteria is preferred, but some antibiotics may still be used and tested by doctors.

How Common Are Enterobacter Aerogenes?

Enterobacter aerogenes are typically found in human gastrointestinal tracts and aren’t a major concern to healthy individuals.

However, they have also been known to appear in waste, soil, and hygienic chemicals.

At one point, they were the eighth most common pathogen found in healthcare-associated infections in the United States and were a significant issue for transmission. 


No longer referred to as Enterobacter Aerogenes after scientists discovered the close relationship they have to the Klebsiella species, it was renamed Klebsiella Aerogenes in recent years.

As Gram-negative bacteria, they are resistant to antibiotics and are widespread throughout the world, being found in both natural and hospital settings.

Jennifer Dawkins

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