Medical Definition of Mycobacterium tuberculosis

Mycobacterium tuberculosis: The bacterium that causes tuberculosis. M. tuberculosis has unusually waxy walls, is slow-growing and among the most recalcitrant bacteria to treatment. The complete genome sequence of M. tuberculosis was published in 1998 revealing remarkably large proportion of its coding capacity devoted to producing enzymes involved in lipogenesis and lipolysis, the buildup and breakdown of lipids (fats). For more information, see: Tuberculosis.

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Last Editorial Review: 5/13/2016

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