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Sunday, July 7, 2019

The genome sequence of Barbarea vulgaris facilitates the study of ecological biochemistry.

The genus Barbarea has emerged as a model for evolution and ecology of plant defense compounds, due to its unusual glucosinolate profile and production of saponins, unique to the Brassicaceae. One species, B. vulgaris, includes two ‘types’, G-type and P-type that differ in trichome density, and their glucosinolate and saponin profiles. A key difference is the stereochemistry of hydroxylation of their common phenethylglucosinolate backbone, leading to epimeric glucobarbarins. Here we report a draft genome sequence of the G-type, and re-sequencing of the P-type for comparison. This enables us to identify candidate genes underlying glucosinolate diversity, trichome density, and study the…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Neurotrophin biology at NGF 2016: From fundamental science to clinical applications.

In 1986, members of the growing neurotrophin community came together to honor the scientific contributions (and 77th birth- day) of Dr. Rita Levi-Montalcini. The celebration took the form of a conference dedicated to the field birthed by Dr. Levi-Montalcini’s discovery of nerve growth factor (NGF), for which she shared the Nobel Prize later that year with Stanley Cohen. The meeting proved to be a great success, and eventually became an ongoing series. The NGF 2016 meeting, held at the beautiful Asilomar conference cen- ter in Monterey, California, was the 13th meeting in this series, and marked the 30th anniversary of…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Complete genome sequence of Kosakonia oryzae type strain Ola 51(T).

Strain Ola 51(T) (=LMG 24251(T)?=?CGMCC 1.7012(T)) is the type strain of the species Kosakonia oryzae and was isolated from surface-sterilized roots of the wild rice species Oryza latifolia grown in Guangdong, China. Here we summarize the features of the strain Ola 51(T) and describe its complete genome sequence. The genome contains one circular chromosome of 5,303,342 nucleotides with 54.01% GC content, 4773 protein-coding genes, 16 rRNA genes, 76 tRNA genes, 13 ncRNA genes, 48 pseudo genes, and 1 CRISPR array.

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Comparative analysis of Ralstonia solanacearum methylomes.

Ralstonia solanacearum is an important soil-borne plant pathogen with broad geographical distribution and the ability to cause wilt disease in many agriculturally important crops. Genome sequencing of multiple R. solanacearum strains has identified both unique and shared genetic traits influencing their evolution and ability to colonize plant hosts. Previous research has shown that DNA methylation can drive speciation and modulate virulence in bacteria, but the impact of epigenetic modifications on the diversification and pathogenesis of R. solanacearum is unknown. Sequencing of R. solanacearum strains GMI1000 and UY031 using Single Molecule Real-Time technology allowed us to perform a comparative analysis of…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Repeated divergent selection on pigmentation genes in a rapid finch radiation.

Instances of recent and rapid speciation are suitable for associating phenotypes with their causal genotypes, especially if gene flow homogenizes areas of the genome that are not under divergent selection. We study a rapid radiation of nine sympatric bird species known as capuchino seedeaters, which are differentiated in sexually selected characters of male plumage and song. We sequenced the genomes of a phenotypically diverse set of species to search for differentiated genomic regions. Capuchinos show differences in a small proportion of their genomes, yet selection has acted independently on the same targets in different members of this radiation. Many divergent…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Proteogenomics produces comprehensive and highly accurate protein-coding gene annotation in a complete genome assembly of Malassezia sympodialis.

Complete and accurate genome assembly and annotation is a crucial foundation for comparative and functional genomics. Despite this, few complete eukaryotic genomes are available, and genome annotation remains a major challenge. Here, we present a complete genome assembly of the skin commensal yeast Malassezia sympodialis and demonstrate how proteogenomics can substantially improve gene annotation. Through long-read DNA sequencing, we obtained a gap-free genome assembly for M. sympodialis (ATCC 42132), comprising eight nuclear and one mitochondrial chromosome. We also sequenced and assembled four M. sympodialis clinical isolates, and showed their value for understanding Malassezia reproduction by confirming four alternative allele combinations…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Fungal genome and mating system transitions facilitated by chromosomal translocations involving intercentromeric recombination.

Species within the human pathogenic Cryptococcus species complex are major threats to public health, causing approximately 1 million annual infections globally. Cryptococcus amylolentus is the most closely known related species of the pathogenic Cryptococcus species complex, and it is non-pathogenic. Additionally, while pathogenic Cryptococcus species have bipolar mating systems with a single large mating type (MAT) locus that represents a derived state in Basidiomycetes, C. amylolentus has a tetrapolar mating system with 2 MAT loci (P/R and HD) located on different chromosomes. Thus, studying C. amylolentus will shed light on the transition from tetrapolar to bipolar mating systems in the…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Regulation of hetDNA length during mitotic double-strand break repair in yeast.

Heteroduplex DNA (hetDNA) is a key molecular intermediate during the repair of mitotic double-strand breaks by homologous recombination, but its relationship to 5′ end resection and/or 3′ end extension is poorly understood. In the current study, we examined how perturbations in these processes affect the hetDNA profile associated with repair of a defined double-strand break (DSB) by the synthesis-dependent strand-annealing (SDSA) pathway. Loss of either the Exo1 or Sgs1 long-range resection pathway significantly shortened hetDNA, suggesting that these pathways normally collaborate during DSB repair. In addition, altering the processivity or proofreading activity of DNA polymerase d shortened hetDNA length or reduced…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Tryptorubin A: A polycyclic peptide from a fungus-derived Streptomycete.

Fungus-growing ants engage in complex symbiotic relationships with their fungal crop, specialized fungal pathogens, and bacteria that provide chemical defenses. In an effort to understand the evolutionary origins of this multilateral system, we investigated bacteria isolated from fungi. One bacterial strain (Streptomyces sp. CLI2509) from the bracket fungus Hymenochaete rubiginosa, produced an unusual peptide, tryptorubin A, which contains heteroaromatic links between side chains that give it a rigid polycyclic globular structure. The three-dimensional structure was determined by NMR and MS, including a (13)C-(13)C COSY of isotopically enriched material, degradation, derivatives, and computer modeling. Whole genome sequencing identified a likely pair…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Genome architecture and evolution of a unichromosomal asexual nematode.

Asexual reproduction in animals, though rare, is the main or exclusive mode of reproduction in some long-lived lineages. The longevity of asexual clades may be correlated with the maintenance of heterozygosity by mechanisms that rearrange genomes and reduce recombination. Asexual species thus provide an opportunity to gain insight into the relationship between molecular changes, genome architecture, and cellular processes. Here we report the genome sequence of the parthenogenetic nematode Diploscapter pachys with only one chromosome pair. We show that this unichromosomal architecture is shared by a long-lived clade of asexual nematodes closely related to the genetic model organism Caenorhabditis elegans.…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

FKBP12-dependent inhibition of calcineurin mediates immunosuppressive antifungal drug action in Malassezia.

The genus Malassezia includes yeasts that are commonly found on the skin or hair of animals and humans as commensals and are associated with a number of skin disorders. We have previously developed an Agrobacterium tumefaciens transformation system effective for both targeted gene deletion and insertional mutagenesis in Malassezia furfur and M. sympodialis In the present study, these molecular resources were applied to characterize the immunophilin FKBP12 as the target of tacrolimus (FK506), ascomycin, and pimecrolimus, which are calcineurin inhibitors that are used as alternatives to corticosteroids in the treatment of inflammatory skin disorders such as those associated with Malassezia species.…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Hybrid de novo genome assembly and centromere characterization of the gray mouse lemur (Microcebus murinus).

The de novo assembly of repeat-rich mammalian genomes using only high-throughput short read sequencing data typically results in highly fragmented genome assemblies that limit downstream applications. Here, we present an iterative approach to hybrid de novo genome assembly that incorporates datasets stemming from multiple genomic technologies and methods. We used this approach to improve the gray mouse lemur (Microcebus murinus) genome from early draft status to a near chromosome-scale assembly.We used a combination of advanced genomic technologies to iteratively resolve conflicts and super-scaffold the M. murinus genome.We improved the M. murinus genome assembly to a scaffold N50 of 93.32 Mb.…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Meeting report on experimental approaches to evolution and ecology using yeast and other model systems.

The fourth EMBO-sponsored conference on Experimental Approaches to Evolution and Ecology Using Yeast and Other Model Systems (https://www.embl.de/training/events/2016/EAE16-01/), was held at the EMBL in Heidelberg, Germany, October 19-23, 2016. The conference was organized by Judith Berman (Tel Aviv University), Maitreya Dunham (University of Washington), Jun-Yi Leu (Academia Sinica), and Lars Steinmetz (EMBL Heidelberg and Stanford University). The meeting attracted ~120 researchers from 28 countries and covered a wide range of topics in the fields of genetics, evolutionary biology, and ecology with a unifying focus on yeast as a model system. Attendees enjoyed the Keith Haring inspired yeast florescence microscopy artwork…

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