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.
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.
‘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.
‘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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
AbstractThe understanding and manipulation of microbial communities toward the conversion of lignocellulose and plastics are topics of interest in microbial ecology and biotechnology. In this study, the polymer-degrading capability of a minimal lignocellulolytic microbial consortium (MELMC) was explored by genome-resolved metagenomics. The MELMC was mostly composed (>90%) of three bacterial members (Pseudomonas protegens; Pristimantibacillus lignocellulolyticus gen. nov., sp. nov; and Ochrobactrum gambitense sp. nov) recognized by their high-quality metagenome-assembled genomes (MAGs). Functional annotation of these MAGs revealed that Pr. lignocellulolyticus could be involved in cellulose and xylan deconstruction, whereas Ps. protegens could catabolize lignin-derived chemical compounds. The capacity of the MELMC to transform synthetic plastics was assessed by two strategies: (i) annotation of MAGs against databases containing plastic-transforming enzymes; and (ii) predicting enzymatic activity based on chemical structural similarities between lignin- and plastics-derived chemical compounds, using Simplified Molecular-Input Line-Entry System and Tanimoto coefficients. Enzymes involved in the depolymerization of polyurethane and polybutylene adipate terephthalate were found to be encoded by Ps. protegens, which could catabolize phthalates and terephthalic acid. The axenic culture of Ps. protegens grew on polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) nanoparticles and might be a suitable species for the industrial production of PHAs in the context of lignin and plastic upcycling.
Thousands of new bacterial and archaeal species and higher-level taxa are discovered each year through the analysis of genomes and metagenomes. The Genome Taxonomy Database (GTDB) provides hierarchical sequence-based descriptions and classifications for new and as-yet-unnamed taxa. However, bacterial nomenclature, as currently configured, cannot keep up with the need for new well-formed names. Instead, microbiologists have been forced to use hard-to-remember alphanumeric placeholder labels. Here, we exploit an approach to the generation of well-formed arbitrary Latinate names at a scale sufficient to name tens of thousands of unnamed taxa within GTDB. These newly created names represent an important resource for the microbiology community, facilitating communication between bioinformaticians, microbiologists and taxonomists, while populating the emerging landscape of microbial taxonomic and functional discovery with accessible and memorable linguistic labels.
Candidatus Phytoplasma pruni is the causative agent of X-disease on peach (Prunus persica) trees. Infected trees exhibit premature yellowing, leaf necrosis causing a shot-hole appearance, limb dieback, and eventual death. How pathogen infection leads to these symptoms is unknown. This study undertook a modern characterization of the disease by assessing the physiological and transcriptomic consequences of phytoplasma infection. Phytoplasma titer was high in the symptomatic tissues and undetected or at low titer in asymptomatic tissues. Symptomatic leaves had a significant decrease in chlorophyll a, chlorophyll b, and carotenoids. Transcriptomic analysis showed alterations in genes related to phytohormone synthesis and signaling, circadian rhythms, lignification, and sugar synthesis and transport. Several transcripts that may be related to symptom development were identified. Collectively these data give a much clearer picture of symptom development in Ca. P. pruni infected P. persica and provide several avenues of further research in determining how Ca. P. pruni interacts with its host to elicit the observed symptoms.
“Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus” (CLas) is the causal agent of citrus Huanglongbing (HLB, also called citrus greening disease), a highly destructive disease threatening citrus production worldwide. A novel Microviridae phage (named CLasMV1) has been found to infect CLas, providing a potential therapeutic strategy for CLas/HLB control. However, little is known about the CLasMV1 biology. In this study, we analyzed the population dynamics of CLasMV1 between the insect vector of CLas, the Asian citrus psyllid (ACP, Diaphorina citri Kuwayama) and the holoparasitic dodder plant (Cuscuta campestris Yunck.); both acquired CLasMV1-infected CLas from an HLB citrus. All CLas-positive dodder samples were CLasMV1-positive, whereas only 32% of CLas-positive ACP samples were identified as CLasMV1-positive. Quantitative analyses showed a similar distribution pattern of CLasMV1 phage and CLas among eight citrus cultivars by presenting at highest abundance in the fruit pith and/or the center axis of the fruit. Transcriptome analyses revealed the possible lytic activity of CLasMV1 on CLas in fruit pith as evidenced by high-level expressions of CLasMV1 genes, and CLas genes related to cell wall biogenesis and remodeling to maintain the CLas cell envelope integrity. The up-regulation of CLas genes were involved in restriction–modification system that could involve possible phage resistance for CLas during CLasMV1 infection. In addition, the regulation of CLas genes involved in cell surface components and Sec pathway by CLasMV1 phage could be beneficial for phage infection. This study expanded our knowledge of CLasMV1 phage that will benefit further CLas phage research and HLB control.
A co-culture of a novel thermoacidophilic, obligate symbiotic archaeon, designated as strain MJ1T, with its specific host archaeon
strain MJ1HA was obtained from a terrestrial hot spring in Japan. Strain MJ1T grew in the co-culture under aerobic conditions. Coccoid cells of strain MJ1T were 200–500 nm in diameter, and attached to the MJ1HA cells in the co-culture. The ranges and optima of the growth temperature and pH of strain MJ1T in the co-culture were 60–75 °C (optimum, 65–70 °C) and pH 1.0–4.0 (optimum, pH 2.5), respectively. Core lipids of dialkyl glycerol tetraethers (GDGT)−3 and GDGT-4 were highly abundant in MJ1T cells concentrated from the co-culture. Strain MJ1T has a small genome (0.67 Mbp) lacking genes for biosynthesis of essential biomolecules, such as nucleotides, lipids and ATP. The genomic DNA G+C content was 24.9 mol%. The 16S rRNA gene sequence of strain MJ1T was most closely related to that of the cultivated species, ‘Nanopusillus acidilobi’ strain N7A (85.8 % similarity). Based on phylogenetic and physiological characteristics, we propose the name Nanobdella aerobiophila gen. nov., sp. nov. to accommodate the strain MJ1T (=JCM 33616T=DSM 111728T). In addition, we propose the names Nanobdellaceae fam. nov., Nanobdellales ord. nov., and Nanobdellia class. nov. to accommodate the novel genus.