Here we present comparative data on the localization and identity of intracellular symbionts among the superfamily Lygaeoidea (Insecta: Hemiptera: Heteroptera: Pentatomomorpha). Five different lygaeoid species from the families Blissidae and Lygaeidae (sensu stricto; including the subfamilies Lygaeinae and Orsillinae) were analyzed. Fluorescence
hybridization (FISH) revealed that all the bugs studied possess paired bacteriomes that are differently shaped in the abdomen and harbor specific endosymbionts therein. The endosymbionts were also detected in female gonads and at the anterior poles of developing eggs, indicating vertical transmission of the endosymbionts via ovarial passage, in contrast to the posthatch symbiont transmission commonly found among pentatomoid bugs (Pentatomomorpha: Pentatomoidea). Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA and
genes showed that the endosymbionts of
constitute at least four distinct clades in the
. The endosymbiont phylogeny did not agree with the host phylogeny based on the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I (
) gene, but there was a local cospeciating pattern within the subfamily Orsillinae. Meanwhile, the endosymbiont of
(Lygaeidae: Orsillinae), although harbored in paired bacteriomes as in other lygaeoid bugs of the related genera
, was phylogenetically close to “
Rohrkolberia cinguli,” the endosymbiont of
(Lygaeoidea: Artheneidae), suggesting an endosymbiont replacement in this lineage. The diverse endosymbionts and the differently shaped bacteriomes may reflect independent evolutionary origins of the endosymbiotic systems among lygaeoid bugs.
Extensive search for new endosymbiotic systems in ciliates occasionally reverts us to the endosymbiotic bacteria described in the pre-molecular biology era and, hence, lacking molecular characterization. A pool of these endosymbionts has been referred to as a hidden bacterial biodiversity from the past. Here, we provide a description of one of such endosymbionts, retrieved from the ciliate Paramecium nephridiatum. This curve-shaped endosymbiont (CS), which shared the host cytoplasm with recently described “Candidatus Megaira venefica”, was found in the same host and in the same geographic location as one of the formerly reported endosymbiotic bacteria and demonstrated similar morphology. Based on morphological data obtained with DIC, TEM and AFM and molecular characterization by means of sequencing 16S rRNA gene, we propose a novel genus, “Candidatus Mystax”, with a single species “Ca. Mystax nordicus”. Phylogenetic analysis placed this species in Holosporales, among Holospora-like bacteria. Contrary to all Holospora species and many other Holospora-like bacteria, such as “Candidatus Gortzia”, “Candidatus Paraholospora” or “Candidatus Hafkinia”, “Ca. Mystax nordicus” was never observed inside the host nucleus. “Ca. Mystax nordicus” lacked infectivity and killer effect. The striking peculiarity of this endosymbiont was its ability to form aggregates with the host mitochondria, which distinguishes it from Holospora and Holospora-like bacteria inhabiting paramecia.
AbstractThe recently discovered DPANN archaea are a potentially deep-branching, monophyletic radiation of organisms with small cells and genomes. However, the monophyly and early emergence of the various DPANN clades and their role in life’s evolution are debated. Here, we reconstructed and analysed genomes of an uncharacterized archaeal phylum (Candidatus Undinarchaeota), revealing that its members have small genomes and, while potentially being able to conserve energy through fermentation, likely depend on partner organisms for the acquisition of certain metabolites. Our phylogenomic analyses robustly place Undinarchaeota as an independent lineage between two highly supported ‘DPANN’ clans. Further, our analyses suggest that DPANN have exchanged core genes with their hosts, adding to the difficulty of placing DPANN in the tree of life. This pattern can be sufficiently dominant to allow identifying known symbiont-host clades based on routes of gene transfer. Together, our work provides insights into the origins and evolution of DPANN and their hosts.
AbstractFour pathogenic bacterial species of the genus ‘Candidatus Liberibacter’, transmitted by psyllid vectors, have been associated with serious diseases affecting economically important crops of Rutaceae, Apiaceae and Solanaceae families. The most severe disease of citrus plants, huanglongbing (HLB), is associated with ‘Ca. Liberibacter asiaticus’ (CaLas), ‘Ca. Liberibacter americanus’ (CaLam) and ‘Ca. Liberibacter africanus’ (CaLaf), while ‘Ca. Liberibacter solanacearum’ (CaLsol) is associated with zebra chip disease in potatoes and vegetative disorders in apiaceous plants. Since these bacteria remain non-culturable and their symptoms are non-specific, their detection and identification are done by molecular methods, mainly based on PCR protocols. In this study, a new quantitative real-time PCR protocol based on TaqMan probe, which can also be performed in a conventional PCR version, has been developed to detect the four known phytopathogenic species of the genus Liberibacter. The new protocol has been validated according to European Plant Protection Organization (EPPO) guidelines and is able to detect CaLas, CaLam, CaLaf and CaLsol in both plants and vectors, not only using purified DNA but also using crude extracts of potato and citrus or psyllids. A comparative analysis with other previously described qPCR protocols revealed that this new one developed in this study is more specific and equally or more sensitive. Thus, other genus-specific qPCR protocols have important drawbacks regarding the lack of specificity, while with the new protocol there was no cross-reactions in 250 samples from 24 different plant and insect species from eight different geographical origins. Therefore, it can be used as a rapid and time-saving screening test, as it allows simultaneous detection of all plant pathogenic species of ‘Ca. Liberibacter’ in a one-step assay.
AbstractCable bacteria of the Desulfobulbaceae family are centimeter-long filamentous bacteria, which are capable of conducting long-distance electron transfer. Currently, all cable bacteria are classified into two candidate genera: Candidatus Electronema, typically found in freshwater environments, and Candidatus Electrothrix, typically found in saltwater environments. This taxonomic framework is based on both 16S rRNA gene sequences and metagenome-assembled genome (MAG) phylogenies. However, most of the currently available MAGs are highly fragmented, incomplete, and thus likely miss key genes essential for deciphering the physiology of cable bacteria. Also, a closed, circular genome of cable bacteria has not been published yet. To address this, we performed Nanopore long-read and Illumina short-read shotgun sequencing of selected environmental samples and a single-strain enrichment of Ca. Electronema aureum. We recovered multiple cable bacteria MAGs, including two circular and one single-contig. Phylogenomic analysis, also confirmed by 16S rRNA gene-based phylogeny, classified one circular MAG and the single-contig MAG as novel species of cable bacteria, which we propose to name Ca. Electronema halotolerans and Ca. Electrothrix laxa, respectively. The Ca. Electronema halotolerans, despite belonging to the previously recognized freshwater genus of cable bacteria, was retrieved from brackish-water sediment. Metabolic predictions showed several adaptations to a high salinity environment, similar to the “saltwater” Ca. Electrothrix species, indicating how Ca. Electronema halotolerans may be the evolutionary link between marine and freshwater cable bacteria lineages.