Search results (62)


A serralysin-like protein of Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus modulates components of the bacterial extracellular matrix

Citation
Garcia et al. (2022). Frontiers in Microbiology 13
Names
Ca. Liberibacter asiaticus Liberibacter
Subjects
Microbiology Microbiology (medical)
Abstract
Huanglongbing (HLB), the current major threat for Citrus species, is caused by intracellular alphaproteobacteria of the genus Candidatus Liberibacter (CaL), with CaL asiaticus (CLas) being the most prevalent species. This bacterium inhabits phloem cells and is transmitted by the psyllid Diaphorina citri. A gene encoding a putative serralysin-like metalloprotease (CLIBASIA_01345) was identified in the CLas genome. The expression levels of this gene were found to be higher in citrus leaves than in psyllids, suggesting a function for this protease in adaptation to the plant environment. Here, we study the putative role of CLas-serralysin (Las1345) as virulence factor. We first assayed whether Las1345 could be secreted by two different surrogate bacteria, Rhizobium leguminosarum bv. viciae A34 (A34) and Serratia marcescens. The protein was detected only in the cellular fraction of A34 and S. marcescens expressing Las1345, and increased protease activity of those bacteria by 2.55 and 4.25-fold, respectively. In contrast, Las1345 expressed in Nicotiana benthamiana leaves did not show protease activity nor alterations in the cell membrane, suggesting that Las1345 do not function as a protease in the plant cell. Las1345 expression negatively regulated cell motility, exopolysaccharide production, and biofilm formation in Xanthomonas campestris pv. campestris (Xcc). This bacterial phenotype was correlated with reduced growth and survival on leaf surfaces as well as reduced disease symptoms in N. benthamiana and Arabidopsis. These results support a model where Las1345 could modify extracellular components to adapt bacterial shape and appendages to the phloem environment, thus contributing to virulence.

Proteomic and bioinformatic analyses of proteins in the outer membrane and extracellular compartments and outer membrane vesicles of Candidatus Liberibacter species

Citation
Huang et al. (2022). Frontiers in Microbiology 13
Names
Ca. Liberibacter asiaticus Liberibacter
Subjects
Microbiology Microbiology (medical)
Abstract
Citrus Huanglongbing (HLB) is the most devastating citrus disease in the world. Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus (Las) is the prevalent HLB pathogen, which is yet to be cultivated. A recent study demonstrates that Las does not contain pathogenicity factors that are directly responsible for HLB symptoms. Instead, Las triggers systemic and chronic immune responses, representing a pathogen-triggered immune disease. Importantly, overproduction of reactive oxygen species (ROS) causes systemic cell death of phloem tissues, thus causing HLB symptoms. Because Las resides in the phloem tissues, it is expected that phloem cell might recognize outer membrane proteins, outer membrane vesicle (OMV) proteins and extracellular proteins of Las to contribute to the immune responses. Because Las has not been cultivated, we used Liberibacter crescens (Lcr) as a surrogate to identify proteins in the OM fraction, OMV proteins and extracellular proteins by liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometry (LC–MS/MS). We observed OMVs of Lcr under scanning electron microscope, representing the first experimental evidence that Liberibacter can deliver proteins to the extracellular compartment. In addition, we also further analyzed LC–MS/MS data using bioinformatic tools. Our study provides valuable information regarding the biology of Ca. Liberibacter species and identifies many putative proteins that may interact with host proteins in the phloem tissues.

Response of the Anaerobic Methanotrophic Archaeon Candidatus “Methanoperedens nitroreducens” to the Long-Term Ferrihydrite Amendment

Citation
Cai et al. (2022). Frontiers in Microbiology 13
Subjects
Microbiology Microbiology (medical)
Abstract
Anaerobic methanotrophic (ANME) archaea can drive anaerobic oxidation of methane (AOM) using solid iron or manganese oxides as the electron acceptors, hypothetically via direct extracellular electron transfer (EET). This study investigated the response of Candidatus “Methanoperedens nitroreducens TS” (type strain), an ANME archaeon previously characterized to perform nitrate-dependent AOM, to an Fe(III)-amended condition over a prolonged period. Simultaneous consumption of methane and production of dissolved Fe(II) were observed for more than 500 days in the presence of Ca. “M. nitroreducens TS,” indicating that this archaeon can carry out Fe(III)-dependent AOM for a long period. Ca. “M. nitroreducens TS” possesses multiple multiheme c-type cytochromes (MHCs), suggesting that it may have the capability to reduce Fe(III) via EET. Intriguingly, most of these MHCs are orthologous to those identified in Candidatus “Methanoperedens ferrireducens,” an Fe(III)-reducing ANME archaeon. In contrast, the population of Ca. “M. nitroreducens TS” declined and was eventually replaced by Ca. “M. ferrireducens,” implying niche differentiation between these two ANME archaea in the environment.

Methane-Dependent Extracellular Electron Transfer at the Bioanode by the Anaerobic Archaeal Methanotroph “Candidatus Methanoperedens”

Citation
Ouboter et al. (2022). Frontiers in Microbiology 13
Names
Ca. Methanoperedens
Subjects
Microbiology Microbiology (medical)
Abstract
Anaerobic methanotrophic (ANME) archaea have recently been reported to be capable of using insoluble extracellular electron acceptors via extracellular electron transfer (EET). In this study, we investigated EET by a microbial community dominated by “Candidatus Methanoperedens” archaea at the anode of a bioelectrochemical system (BES) poised at 0 V vs. standard hydrogen electrode (SHE), in this way measuring current as a direct proxy of EET by this community. After inoculation of the BES, the maximum current density was 274 mA m–2 (stable current up to 39 mA m–2). Concomitant conversion of 13CH4 into 13CO2 demonstrated that current production was methane-dependent, with 38% of the current attributed directly to methane supply. Based on the current production and methane uptake in a closed system, the Coulombic efficiency was about 17%. Polarization curves demonstrated that the current was limited by microbial activity at potentials above 0 V. The metatranscriptome of the inoculum was mined for the expression of c-type cytochromes potentially used for EET, which led to the identification of several multiheme c-type cytochrome-encoding genes among the most abundant transcripts in “Ca. Methanoperedens.” Our study provides strong indications of EET in ANME archaea and describes a system in which ANME-mediated EET can be investigated under laboratory conditions, which provides new research opportunities for mechanistic studies and possibly the generation of axenic ANME cultures.

An Overview of the Mechanisms Against “Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus”: Virulence Targets, Citrus Defenses, and Microbiome

Citation
Yang, Ancona (2022). Frontiers in Microbiology 13
Names
Ca. Liberibacter asiaticus
Subjects
Microbiology Microbiology (medical)
Abstract
Citrus Huanglongbing (HLB) or citrus greening, is the most destructive disease for citrus worldwide. It is caused by the psyllid-transmitted, phloem-limited bacteria “Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus” (CLas). To date, there are still no effective practical strategies for curing citrus HLB. Understanding the mechanisms against CLas can contribute to the development of effective approaches for combatting HLB. However, the unculturable nature of CLas has hindered elucidating mechanisms against CLas. In this review, we summarize the main aspects that contribute to the understanding about the mechanisms against CLas, including (1) CLas virulence targets, focusing on inhibition of virulence genes; (2) activation of citrus host defense genes and metabolites of HLB-tolerant citrus triggered by CLas, and by agents; and (3) we also review the role of citrus microbiome in combatting CLas. Finally, we discuss novel strategies to continue studying mechanisms against CLas and the relationship of above aspects.

Integrated Analysis of the miRNAome and Transcriptome Reveals miRNA–mRNA Regulatory Networks in Catharanthus roseus Through Cuscuta campestris-Mediated Infection With “Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus”

Citation
Zeng et al. (2022). Frontiers in Microbiology 13
Names
Ca. Liberibacter asiaticus
Subjects
Microbiology Microbiology (medical)
Abstract
Citrus Huanglongbing (HLB) is the most devastating disease of citrus caused by the Gram-negative phloem-limited bacterium “Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus” (CLas). It can be transmitted by the Asian citrus psyllid “Diaphorina citri,” by grafting, and by the holoparasitic dodder. In this study, the non-natural host periwinkle (Catharanthus roseus) was infected via dodder (Cuscuta campestris) from CLas-infected citrus plants, and the asymptomatic leaves (AS) were subjected to transcriptomic and small-RNA profiling. The results were analyzed together with a transcriptome dataset from the NCBI repository that included leaves for which symptoms had just occurred (S) and yellowing leaves (Y). There were 3,675 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) identified in AS, and 6,390 more DEGs in S and further 2109 DEGs in Y. These DEGs were commonly enriched in photosystem, chloroplast, membrane, oxidation-reduction process, metal/zinc ion binding on GO. A total of 14,974 DEGs and 336 DE miRNAs (30 conserved and 301 novel) were identified. Through weighted gene co-expression network and nested network analyses, two critical nested miRNA–mRNA regulatory networks were identified with four conserved miRNAs. The primary miR164-NAC1 network is potentially involved in plant defense responses against CLas from the early infection stage to symptom development. The secondary network revealed the regulation of secondary metabolism and nutrient homeostasis through miR828-MYB94/miR1134-HSF4 and miR827-ATG8 regulatory networks, respectively. The findings discovered new potential mechanisms in periwinkle–CLas interactions, and its confirmation can be done in citrus–CLas system later on. The advantages of periwinkle plants in facilitating the quick establishment and greater multiplication of CLas, and shortening latency for disease symptom development make it a great surrogate for further studies, which could expedite our understanding of CLas pathogenesis.

Comparative Genome Analysis of ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma luffae’ Reveals the Influential Roles of Potential Mobile Units in Phytoplasma Evolution

Citation
Huang et al. (2022). Frontiers in Microbiology 13
Names
Ca. Phytoplasma luffae
Subjects
Microbiology Microbiology (medical)
Abstract
Phytoplasmas are insect-transmitted plant pathogens that cause substantial losses in agriculture. In addition to economic impact, phytoplasmas induce distinct disease symptoms in infected plants, thus attracting attention for research on molecular plant-microbe interactions and plant developmental processes. Due to the difficulty of establishing an axenic culture of these bacteria, culture-independent genome characterization is a crucial tool for phytoplasma research. However, phytoplasma genomes have strong nucleotide composition biases and are repetitive, which make it challenging to produce complete assemblies. In this study, we utilized Illumina and Oxford Nanopore sequencing technologies to obtain the complete genome sequence of ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma luffae’ strain NCHU2019 that is associated with witches’ broom disease of loofah (Luffa aegyptiaca) in Taiwan. The fully assembled circular chromosome is 769 kb in size and is the first representative genome sequence of group 16SrVIII phytoplasmas. Comparative analysis with other phytoplasmas revealed that NCHU2019 has a remarkably repetitive genome, possessing a pair of 75 kb repeats and at least 13 potential mobile units (PMUs) that account for ∼25% of its chromosome. This level of genome repetitiveness is exceptional for bacteria, particularly among obligate pathogens with reduced genomes. Our genus-level analysis of PMUs demonstrated that these phytoplasma-specific mobile genetic elements can be classified into three major types that differ in gene organization and phylogenetic distribution. Notably, PMU abundance explains nearly 80% of the variance in phytoplasma genome sizes, a finding that provides a quantitative estimate for the importance of PMUs in phytoplasma genome variability. Finally, our investigation found that in addition to horizontal gene transfer, PMUs also contribute to intra-genomic duplications of effector genes, which may provide redundancy for subfunctionalization or neofunctionalization. Taken together, this work improves the taxon sampling for phytoplasma genome research and provides novel information regarding the roles of mobile genetic elements in phytoplasma evolution.

Overexpression of a “Candidatus Liberibacter Asiaticus” Effector Gene CaLasSDE115 Contributes to Early Colonization in Citrus sinensis

Citation
Du et al. (2022). Frontiers in Microbiology 12
Names
Liberibacter
Subjects
Microbiology Microbiology (medical)
Abstract
Huanglongbing (HLB), caused by “Candidatus liberibacter asiaticus” (CaLas), is one of the most devastating diseases in citrus but its pathogenesis remains poorly understood. Here, we reported the role of the CaLasSDE115 (CLIBASIA_05115) effector, encoded by CaLas, during pathogen-host interactions. Bioinformatics analyses showed that CaLasSDE115 was 100% conserved in all reported CaLas strains but had sequence differences compared with orthologs from other “Candidatus liberibacter.” Prediction of protein structures suggested that the crystal structure of CaLasSDE115 was very close to that of the invasion-related protein B (IalB), a virulence factor from Bartonella henselae. Alkaline phosphatase (PhoA) assay in E. coli further confirmed that CaLasSDE115 was a Sec-dependent secretory protein while subcellular localization analyses in tobacco showed that the mature protein of SDE115 (mSDE115), without its putative Sec-dependent signal peptide, was distributed in the cytoplasm and the nucleus. Expression levels of CaLasSDE115 in CaLas-infected Asian citrus psyllid (ACP) were much higher (∼45-fold) than those in CaLas-infected Wanjincheng oranges, with the expression in symptomatic leaves being significantly higher than that in asymptomatic ones. Additionally, the overexpression of mSDE115 favored CaLas proliferation during the early stages (2 months) of infection while promoting the development of symptoms. Hormone content and gene expression analysis of transgenic plants also suggested that overexpressing mSDE115 modulated the transcriptional regulation of genes involved in systemic acquired resistance (SAR) response. Overall, our data indicated that CaLasSDE115 effector contributed to the early colonization of citrus by the pathogen and worsened the occurrence of Huanglongbing symptoms, thereby providing a theoretical basis for further exploring the pathogenic mechanisms of Huanglongbing disease in citrus.

Amycolatopsis aidingensis sp. nov., a Halotolerant Actinobacterium, Produces New Secondary Metabolites

Citation
Li et al. (2021). Frontiers in Microbiology 12
Names
“Amycolatopsis aidingensis”
Subjects
Microbiology Microbiology (medical)
Abstract
A novel actinobacterium, strain YIM 96748T, was isolated from a saline soil sample collected from the south bank of Aiding Lake in Xinjiang Province, Northwest China. Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA gene sequences revealed that strain YIM 96748T is closely related to Amycolatopsis cihanbeyliensis BNT52T (98.9%) and Amycolatopsis jiangsuensis KLBMP 1262T (97.2%). The DNA–DNA relatedness between strain YIM 96748T and its closest type strain A. cihanbeyliensis BNT52T was 59.6%. The average nucleotide identity between strain YIM 96748T and its neighbor strain was 88.97%. Based on the genotypic and phenotypic characteristics, it is concluded that strain YIM 96748T represents a novel species of the genus Amycolatopsis, whose name was proposed as Amycolatopsis aidingensis sp. nov. The type strain is YIM 96748T. To investigate the biosynthetic potential of producing secondary metabolites, the complete genome of YIM 96748T was sequenced and analyzed. The complete genome sequence of YIM 96748T consists of a 7,657,695-bp circular chromosome, comprising 7,162 predicted genes with a DNA G + C content of 70.21 mol%. Fifty-one putative biosynthetic gene clusters of secondary metabolites were found, including the antibacterial/antitumor agent TLN-05220, the antibacterial agent nocardicin A, the antifungal agent nystatin A1, and the osmolyte ectoine. The investigation of the secondary metabolites of A. aidingensis YIM96748T led to the discovery of two new phenylpropyl acetate enantiomers, amycoletates A (1) and B (2), and five known compounds: 4-hydroxy phenethyl acetate (3), 2-p-acetoxyphenylethanol (4), (S)-ethyl indole-3-lactate (5), (R)-ethyl indole-3-lactate (6), and p-hydroxybenzoic acid (7). One of the gene clusters 14, 36, and 43, which contain a single module of polyketide synthase, might be responsible for the biosynthesis of compounds 1 and 2 from compound 7 as a precursor. Further studies, including the one strain many compounds approach (OSMAC) and genetic modification, are needed to explore novel compounds from this talented halophilic Amycolatopsis strain.