Seventy isolates were obtained from a marine electroactive biofilm that was generated on a cathodically polarized stainless steel electrode (Genoa, Italy). The genetic diversity was investigated by means of BOX-PCR fingerprinting and two clusters of isolates with similar BOX-PCR profiles were delineated. Whole-cell fatty acid methyl ester analysis and 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis showed that the isolates belonged to the Roseobacter lineage of the class Alphaproteobacteria. DNA-DNA hybridization experiments and a biochemical analysis demonstrated that four isolates belonged to the species Ruegeria mobilis. However, 66 isolates from the second BOX-PCR cluster constituted a novel species within the genus Ruegeria, for which the name Ruegeria scottomollicae sp. nov. is proposed. The DNA G+C content was 61.0+/-0.4 %. The type strain is LMG 24367(T) (=CCUG 55858(T)).