1. A genus of aerobic or facultatively anaerobic, spore-forming, ordinarily motile bacteria (family Bacillaceae) containing gram-positive rods. Motile cells are peritrichous; spores are thick walled and take Gram stain poorly; these organisms are chemoheterotrophic and are found primarily in soil. A few species are animal pathogens; some species evoke antibody production. The type species is Bacillus subtilis.
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