Publications (2765)

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Molecular detection of haemophilic pathogens reveals evidence of Candidatus Mycoplasma haemobos in dogs and parasitic ticks in central China

Citation
Shi et al. (2022). BMC Veterinary Research 18 (1)
Names
Ca. Mycoplasma haemobos Ca. Mycoplasma haematoparvum
Subjects
General Medicine General Veterinary
Abstract
Abstract Background In addition to Mycoplasma haemocanis and Candidatus Mycoplasma haematoparvum, a few hemoplasma species that mainly infect other livestock have been detected in dogs. ‘Candidatus Mycoplasma haemobos’ (Ca. M. haemobos) has been found in a variety of animals in China. The present study was aimed to investigate the occurrence of ‘Ca. M. haemobos’ infections in dogs and ticks collected from the Henan province, China. Results Overall, 55 dog blood samples and 378 ticks on skins were collected from anemic and healthy dogs, and these samples were subjected to PCR, sequence analysis, and identification. The results showed that Haemaphysalis longicornis (266) and Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus (112) were the only two parasitic ticks on dogs. Molecular detection revealed that 163 M. haemocanis, 88 ‘Ca. M. haemobos’ and 32 Anaplasma platys positive amplicons could be amplified from dogs, H. longicornis and R. (B.) microplus. In addition, co-infections (M. haemocanis + A. platys and ‘Ca. M. haemobos’+ A. platys) could be also detected. Conclusions To the best of our knowledge, this is the first molecular evidence of ‘Ca. M. haemobos’ natural infection in dogs and tick species identified as H. longicornis and R. (B.) microplus from China.

Genomic diversity across the Rickettsia and ‘Candidatus Megaira’ genera and proposal of genus status for the Torix group

Citation
Davison et al. (2022). Nature Communications 13 (1)
Names
Ca. Tisiphia Ca. Megaira
Subjects
General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology General Chemistry General Physics and Astronomy
Abstract
AbstractMembers of the bacterial genus Rickettsia were originally identified as causative agents of vector-borne diseases in mammals. However, many Rickettsia species are arthropod symbionts and close relatives of ‘Candidatus Megaira’, which are symbiotic associates of microeukaryotes. Here, we clarify the evolutionary relationships between these organisms by assembling 26 genomes of Rickettsia species from understudied groups, including the Torix group, and two genomes of ‘Ca. Megaira’ from various insects and microeukaryotes. Our analyses of the new genomes, in comparison with previously described ones, indicate that the accessory genome diversity and broad host range of Torix Rickettsia are comparable to those of all other Rickettsia combined. Therefore, the Torix clade may play unrecognized roles in invertebrate biology and physiology. We argue this clade should be given its own genus status, for which we propose the name ‘Candidatus Tisiphia’.

An essential role for tungsten in the ecology and evolution of a previously uncultivated lineage of anaerobic, thermophilic Archaea

Citation
Buessecker et al. (2022). Nature Communications 13 (1)
Names
Wolframiiraptor allenii Wolframiiraptor sinensis Terraquivivens tikiterensis Ts Terraquivivens Geocrenenecus Benthortus Terraquivivens yellowstonensis Terraquivivens tengchongensis Terraquivivens ruidianensis Geocrenenecus huangii Geocrenenecus arthurdayi Geocrenenecus dongiae Ts Benthortus lauensis Ts Wolframiiraptoraceae Wolframiiraptor Wolframiiraptor gerlachensis Ts
Subjects
General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology General Chemistry General Physics and Astronomy Multidisciplinary
Abstract
AbstractTrace metals have been an important ingredient for life throughout Earth’s history. Here, we describe the genome-guided cultivation of a member of the elusive archaeal lineage Caldarchaeales (syn. Aigarchaeota), Wolframiiraptor gerlachensis, and its growth dependence on tungsten. A metagenome-assembled genome (MAG) of W. gerlachensis encodes putative tungsten membrane transport systems, as well as pathways for anaerobic oxidation of sugars probably mediated by tungsten-dependent ferredoxin oxidoreductases that are expressed during growth. Catalyzed reporter deposition-fluorescence in-situ hybridization (CARD-FISH) and nanoscale secondary ion mass spectrometry (nanoSIMS) show that W. gerlachensis preferentially assimilates xylose. Phylogenetic analyses of 78 high-quality Wolframiiraptoraceae MAGs from terrestrial and marine hydrothermal systems suggest that tungsten-associated enzymes were present in the last common ancestor of extant Wolframiiraptoraceae. Our observations imply a crucial role for tungsten-dependent metabolism in the origin and evolution of this lineage, and hint at a relic metabolic dependence on this trace metal in early anaerobic thermophiles.

Effects of ‘Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum’ haplotypes A and B on tomato gene expression and geotropism

Citation
Harrison et al. (2022). BMC Plant Biology 22 (1)
Names
“Liberibacter solanacearum”
Subjects
Plant Science
Abstract
Abstract Background The tomato psyllid, Bactericera cockerelli Šulc (Hemiptera: Triozidae), is a pest of solanaceous crops such as tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) in the U.S. and vectors the disease-causing pathogen ‘Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum’ (or Lso). Disease symptom severity is dependent on Lso haplotype: tomato plants infected with Lso haplotype B experience more severe symptoms and higher mortality compared to plants infected with Lso haplotype A. By characterizing the molecular differences in the tomato plant’s responses to Lso haplotypes, the key components of LsoB virulence can be identified and, thus, targeted for disease mitigation strategies. Results To characterize the tomato plant genes putatively involved in the differential immune responses to Lso haplotypes A and B, RNA was extracted from tomato ‘Moneymaker’ leaves 3 weeks after psyllid infestation. Gene expression levels were compared between uninfected tomato plants (i.e., controls and plants infested with Lso-free psyllids) and infected plants (i.e., plants infested with psyllids infected with either Lso haplotype A or Lso haplotype B). Furthermore, expression levels were compared between plants infected with Lso haplotype A and plants infected with Lso haplotype B. A whole transcriptome analysis identified 578 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) between uninfected and infected plants as well as 451 DEGs between LsoA- and LsoB-infected plants. These DEGs were primarily associated with plant defense against abiotic and biotic stressors, growth/development, plant primary metabolism, transport and signaling, and transcription/translation. These gene expression changes suggested that tomato plants traded off plant growth and homeostasis for improved defense against pathogens, especially when infected with LsoB. Consistent with these results, tomato plant growth experiments determined that LsoB-infected plants were significantly stunted and had impaired negative geotropism. However, it appeared that the defense responses mounted by tomatoes were insufficient for overcoming the disease symptoms and mortality caused by LsoB infection, while these defenses could compensate for LsoA infection. Conclusion The transcriptomic analysis and growth experiments demonstrated that Lso-infected tomato plants underwent gene expression changes related to abiotic and biotic stressors, impaired growth/development, impaired plant primary metabolism, impaired transport and signaling transduction, and impaired transcription/translation. Furthermore, the transcriptomic analysis also showed that LsoB-infected plants, relative to LsoA-infected, experienced more severe stunting, had improved responses to some stressors and impaired responses to others, had poorer transport and signaling transduction, and had impaired carbohydrate synthesis and photosynthesis.

Phylogenetic relationship between the endosymbiont “Candidatus Riesia pediculicola” and its human louse host

Citation
Hammoud et al. (2022). Parasites & Vectors 15 (1)
Names
Ca. Riesia pediculicola
Subjects
Infectious Diseases Parasitology
Abstract
Abstract Background The human louse (Pediculus humanus) is a haematophagous ectoparasite that is intimately related to its host. It has been of great public health concern throughout human history. This louse has been classified into six divergent mitochondrial clades (A, D, B, F, C and E). As with all haematophagous lice, P. humanus directly depends on the presence of a bacterial symbiont, known as “Candidatus Riesia pediculicola”, to complement their unbalanced diet. In this study, we evaluated the codivergence of human lice around the world and their endosymbiotic bacteria. Using molecular approaches, we targeted lice mitochondrial genes from the six diverged clades and Candidatus Riesia pediculicola housekeeping genes. Methods The mitochondrial cytochrome b gene (cytb) of lice was selected for molecular analysis, with the aim to identify louse clade. In parallel, we developed four PCR primer pairs targeting three housekeeping genes of Candidatus Riesia pediculicola: ftsZ, groEL and two regions of the rpoB gene (rpoB-1 and rpoB-2). Results The endosymbiont phylogeny perfectly mirrored the host insect phylogeny using the ftsZ and rpoB-2 genes, in addition to showing a significant co-phylogenetic congruence, suggesting a strict vertical transmission and a host–symbiont co-speciation following the evolutionary course of the human louse. Conclusion Our results unequivocally indicate that louse endosymbionts have experienced a similar co-evolutionary history and that the human louse clade can be determined by their endosymbiotic bacteria. Graphical Abstract

Occurrence of ‘Candidatus Mycoplasma haemosuis’ in fattening pigs, sows and piglets in Germany using a novel gap-based quantitative real-time PCR assay

Citation
Ade et al. (2022). BMC Veterinary Research 18 (1)
Names
Ca. Mycoplasma haemosuis
Subjects
General Medicine General Veterinary
Abstract
Abstract Background The appearance of the novel porcine haemotrophic mycoplasma (HM) species ‘Candidatus Mycoplasma haemosuis’ was reported in apparently healthy but also in clinically sick animals in China, Korea and in a case report from Germany. Outside of Asia, however, nothing further is known about the frequency of ‘Ca. M. haemosuis’ in pigs to date. To investigate the distribution of this novel HM species in Germany, fattening pigs, sows and pre-suckling piglets were examined using a herein developed quantitative real-time PCR assay (qPCR). Because the piglets were sampled before the first colostrum uptake, additional information on a possible vertical transmission from dams to their offspring was obtained. Results Our novel qPCR assay successfully detected ‘Ca. M. haemosuis’ in all blood samples from the ‘Ca. M. haemosuis’-infected pigs. No cross-reactivity was detected when DNA from non-target Mycoplasma spp. and other bacterial species representing 105 bacteria/reaction were used as a template. The lower limit of detection of the qPCR was thus 10 gap gene copies per reaction and 2.5 x 103 genome equivalents (GE) per mL blood. ‘Candidatus M. haemosuis’ was detected by this qPCR in blood samples from a total out of 6.25% sows (13/208), 4.50% pre-suckling piglets (28/622) and 17.50% fattening pigs (35/200). On farm level, 3 out of 21 piglet producing farms (14.28%) and 9 out of 20 fattening farms (45.00%) were positive for ‘Ca. M. haemosuis’. Co-infections with M. suis were evident in all age groups. Conclusion ‘Candidatus M. haemosuis’ infection is present in German pig farms and the detection of the novel porcine HM species in piglets immediately after birth before colostrum intake indicates vertical transmission. The novel qPCR assay specific for ‘Ca. M. haemosuis’ described herein will be a prerequisite for future studies on the prevalence, epidemiology as well as the clinical and economic impact of ‘Ca. M. haemosuis’ infections.

A synthetic ‘essentialome’ for axenic culturing of ‘Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus’

Citation
Cai et al. (2022). BMC Research Notes 15 (1)
Names
Ca. Liberibacter asiaticus Liberibacter
Subjects
General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology General Medicine
Abstract
Abstract Objective ‘Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus’ (CLas) is associated with the devastating citrus ‘greening’ disease. All attempts to achieve axenic growth and complete Koch’s postulates with CLas have failed to date, at best yielding complex cocultures with very low CLas titers detectable only by PCR. Reductive genome evolution has rendered all pathogenic ‘Ca. Liberibacter’ spp. deficient in multiple key biosynthetic, metabolic and structural pathways that are highly unlikely to be rescued in vitro by media supplementation alone. By contrast, Liberibacter crescens (Lcr) is axenically cultured and its genome is both syntenic and highly similar to CLas. Our objective is to achieve replicative axenic growth of CLas via addition of missing culturability-related Lcr genes. Results Bioinformatic analyses identified 405 unique ORFs in Lcr but missing (or truncated) in all 24 sequenced CLas strains. Site-directed mutagenesis confirmed and extended published EZ-Tn5 mutagenesis data, allowing elimination of 310 of these 405 genes as nonessential, leaving 95 experimentally validated Lcr genes as essential for CLas growth in axenic culture. Experimental conditions for conjugation of large GFP-expressing plasmids from Escherichia coli to Lcr were successfully established for the first time, providing a practical method for transfer of large groups of ‘essential’ Lcr genes to CLas.

Ethylmalonyl-CoA pathway involved in polyhydroxyvalerate synthesis in Candidatus Contendobacter

Citation
Zhao et al. (2022). AMB Express 12 (1)
Names
Ca. Contendobacter
Subjects
Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology Biophysics
Abstract
AbstractHere a stable glycogen accumulating organisms (GAOs) system was operated by anaerobic–aerobic mode in the sequencing batch reactor. We focused on the metabolic mechanisms of PHAs storage from GAOs. Our system showed the classic characteristic of glycogen accumulating metabolism (GAM). Glycogen consumption was followed by acetic acid uptake to synthesize poly-β-hydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) during the anaerobic period, and glycogen was synthesized by PHAs degradation in the aerobic stage. Microbial community structure indicated that Candidatus Contendobacter was the most prevalent GAOs. We found that the ethylmalonyl-CoA (EMC) pathway was the crucial pathway supplying the core substance propionyl-CoA for poly-β-hydroxyvalerate (PHV) synthesis in Candidatus Contendobacter. All genes in EMC pathway were mainly located in Candidatus Contendobacter by gene source analysis. The key genes expression of EMC pathway increased with Candidatus Contendobacter enrichment, further validating that propionyl-CoA was synthesized by Candidatus Contendobacter predominantly via EMC pathway. Our work revealed the novel mechanisms underlying PHV synthesis through EMC pathway and further improved the intercellular storage metabolism of GAOs.