February 5, 2021  |  

AGBT PacBio Workshop: Full workshop recording

PacBio customers and thought leaders discuss the role SMRT sequencing is playing in comprehensive genomics: past, present, and future. Featuring J. Craig Venter, Gene Myers, Deanna Church, Jeong-Sun Seo and…


April 21, 2020  |  

Tracking short-term changes in the genetic diversity and antimicrobial resistance of OXA-232-producing Klebsiella pneumoniae ST14 in clinical settings.

To track stepwise changes in genetic diversity and antimicrobial resistance in rapidly evolving OXA-232-producing Klebsiella pneumoniae ST14, an emerging carbapenem-resistant high-risk clone, in clinical settings.Twenty-six K. pneumoniae ST14 isolates were collected by the Korean Nationwide Surveillance of Antimicrobial Resistance system over the course of 1 year. Isolates were subjected to whole-genome sequencing and MIC determinations using 33 antibiotics from 14 classes.Single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) typing identified 72 unique SNP sites spanning the chromosomes of the isolates, dividing them into three clusters (I, II and III). The initial isolate possessed two plasmids with 18 antibiotic-resistance genes, including blaOXA-232, and exhibited resistance to 11 antibiotic classes. Four other plasmids containing 12 different resistance genes, including blaCTX-M-15 and strA/B, were introduced over time, providing additional resistance to aztreonam and streptomycin. Moreover, chromosomal integration of insertion sequence Ecp1-blaCTX-M-15 mediated the inactivation of mgrB responsible for colistin resistance in four isolates from cluster III. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first description of K. pneumoniae ST14 resistant to both carbapenem and colistin in South Korea. Furthermore, although some acquired genes were lost over time, the retention of 12 resistance genes and inactivation of mgrB provided resistance to 13 classes of antibiotics.We describe stepwise changes in OXA-232-producing K. pneumoniae ST14 in vivo over time in terms of antimicrobial resistance. Our findings contribute to our understanding of the evolution of emerging high-risk K. pneumoniae clones and provide reference data for future outbreaks.Copyright © 2019 European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


April 21, 2020  |  

Biochemical characterization of a novel cold-adapted agarotetraose-producing a-agarase, AgaWS5, from Catenovulum sediminis WS1-A.

Although many ß-agarases that hydrolyze the ß-1,4 linkages of agarose have been biochemically characterized, only three a-agarases that hydrolyze the a-1,3 linkages are reported to date. In this study, a new a-agarase, AgaWS5, from Catenovulum sediminis WS1-A, a new agar-degrading marine bacterium, was biochemically characterized. AgaWS5 belongs to the glycoside hydrolase (GH) 96 family. AgaWS5 consists of 1295 amino acids (140 kDa) and has the 65% identity to an a-agarase, AgaA33, obtained from an agar-degrading bacterium Thalassomonas agarivorans JAMB-A33. AgaWS5 showed the maximum activity at a pH and temperature of 8 and 40 °C, respectively. AgaWS5 showed a cold-tolerance, and it retained more than 40% of its maximum enzymatic activity at 10 °C. AgaWS5 is predicted to have several calcium-binding sites. Thus, its activity was slightly enhanced in the presence of Ca2+, and was strongly inhibited by EDTA. The Km and Vmax of AgaWS5 for agarose were 10.6 mg/mL and 714.3 U/mg, respectively. Agarose-liquefication, thin layer chromatography, and mass and NMR spectroscopic analyses demonstrated that AgaWS5 is an endo-type a-agarase that degrades agarose and mainly produces agarotetraose. Thus, in this study, a novel cold-adapted GH96 agarotetraose-producing a-agarase was identified.


April 21, 2020  |  

Schizophrenia risk variants influence multiple classes of transcripts of sorting nexin 19 (SNX19).

Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have identified many genomic loci associated with risk for schizophrenia, but unambiguous identification of the relationship between disease-associated variants and specific genes, and in particular their effect on risk conferring transcripts, has proven difficult. To better understand the specific molecular mechanism(s) at the schizophrenia locus in 11q25, we undertook cis expression quantitative trait loci (cis-eQTL) mapping for this 2 megabase genomic region using postmortem human brain samples. To comprehensively assess the effects of genetic risk upon local expression, we evaluated multiple transcript features: genes, exons, and exon-exon junctions in multiple brain regions-dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), hippocampus, and caudate. Genetic risk variants strongly associated with expression of SNX19 transcript features that tag multiple rare classes of SNX19 transcripts, whereas they only weakly affected expression of an exon-exon junction that tags the majority of abundant transcripts. The most prominent class of SNX19 risk-associated transcripts is predicted to be overexpressed, defined by an exon-exon splice junction between exons 8 and 10 (junc8.10) and that is predicted to encode proteins that lack the characteristic nexin C terminal domain. Risk alleles were also associated with either increased or decreased expression of multiple additional classes of transcripts. With RACE, molecular cloning, and long read sequencing, we found a number of novel SNX19 transcripts that further define the set of potential etiological transcripts. We explored epigenetic regulation of SNX19 expression and found that DNA methylation at CpG sites near the primary transcription start site and within exon 2 partially mediate the effects of risk variants on risk-associated expression. ATAC sequencing revealed that some of the most strongly risk-associated SNPs are located within a region of open chromatin, suggesting a nearby regulatory element is involved. These findings indicate a potentially complex molecular etiology, in which risk alleles for schizophrenia generate epigenetic alterations and dysregulation of multiple classes of SNX19 transcripts.


April 21, 2020  |  

Draft Genome Sequence of Streptomyces sp. Strain RFCAC02, Isolated from the Gut Microflora of the Pacific Chub Mackerel Scomber japonicus peruanus.

A new strain of Streptomyces sp., strain RFCAC02, was isolated from the gut of the Pacific chub mackerel Scomber japonicus peruanus This strain produces a variety of secondary metabolites. Further bioinformatic analysis revealed the presence of biosynthetic gene clusters putatively coding for compounds related to the polycyclic tetramate macrolactams (PTMs).Copyright © 2019 Serrano et al.


April 21, 2020  |  

Crustacean Genome Exploration Reveals the Evolutionary Origin of White Spot Syndrome Virus.

White spot syndrome virus (WSSV) is a crustacean-infecting, double-stranded DNA virus and is the most serious viral pathogen in the global shrimp industry. WSSV is the sole recognized member of the family Nimaviridae, and the lack of genomic data on other nimaviruses has obscured the evolutionary history of WSSV. Here, we investigated the evolutionary history of WSSV by characterizing WSSV relatives hidden in host genomic data. We surveyed 14 host crustacean genomes and identified five novel nimaviral genomes. Comparative genomic analysis of Nimaviridae identified 28 “core genes” that are ubiquitously conserved in Nimaviridae; unexpected conservation of 13 uncharacterized proteins highlighted yet-unknown essential functions underlying the nimavirus replication cycle. The ancestral Nimaviridae gene set contained five baculoviral per os infectivity factor homologs and a sulfhydryl oxidase homolog, suggesting a shared phylogenetic origin of Nimaviridae and insect-associated double-stranded DNA viruses. Moreover, we show that novel gene acquisition and subsequent amplification reinforced the unique accessory gene repertoire of WSSV. Expansion of unique envelope protein and nonstructural virulence-associated genes may have been the key genomic event that made WSSV such a deadly pathogen.IMPORTANCE WSSV is the deadliest viral pathogen threatening global shrimp aquaculture. The evolutionary history of WSSV has remained a mystery, because few WSSV relatives, or nimaviruses, had been reported. Our aim was to trace the history of WSSV using the genomes of novel nimaviruses hidden in host genome data. We demonstrate that WSSV emerged from a diverse family of crustacean-infecting large DNA viruses. By comparing the genomes of WSSV and its relatives, we show that WSSV possesses an expanded set of unique host-virus interaction-related genes. This extensive gene gain may have been the key genomic event that made WSSV such a deadly pathogen. Moreover, conservation of insect-infecting virus protein homologs suggests a common phylogenetic origin of crustacean-infecting Nimaviridae and other insect-infecting DNA viruses. Our work redefines the previously poorly characterized crustacean virus family and reveals the ancient genomic events that preordained the emergence of a devastating shrimp pathogen.Copyright © 2019 American Society for Microbiology.


April 21, 2020  |  

Information about variations in multiple copies of bacterial 16S rRNA genes may aid in species identification.

Variable region analysis of 16S rRNA gene sequences is the most common tool in bacterial taxonomic studies. Although used for distinguishing bacterial species, its use remains limited due to the presence of variable copy numbers with sequence variation in the genomes. In this study, 16S rRNA gene sequences, obtained from completely assembled whole genome and Sanger electrophoresis sequencing of cloned PCR products from Serratia fonticola GS2, were compared. Sanger sequencing produced a combination of sequences from multiple copies of 16S rRNA genes. To determine whether the variant copies of 16S rRNA genes affected Sanger sequencing, two ratios (5:5 and 8:2) with different concentrations of cloned 16S rRNA genes were used; it was observed that the greater the number of copies with similar sequences the higher its chance of amplification. Effect of multiple copies for taxonomic classification of 16S rRNA gene sequences was investigated using the strain GS2 as a model. 16S rRNA copies with the maximum variation had 99.42% minimum pairwise similarity and this did not have an effect on species identification. Thus, PCR products from genomes containing variable 16S rRNA gene copies can provide sufficient information for species identification except from species which have high similarity of sequences in their 16S rRNA gene copies like the case of Bacillus thuringiensis and Bacillus cereus. In silico analysis of 1,616 bacterial genomes from long-read sequencing was also done. The average minimum pairwise similarity for each phylum was reported with their average genome size and average “unique copies” of 16S rRNA genes and we found that the phyla Proteobacteria and Firmicutes showed the highest amount of variation in their copies of their 16S rRNA genes. Overall, our results shed light on how the variations in the multiple copies of the 16S rRNA genes of bacteria can aid in appropriate species identification.


April 21, 2020  |  

Distribution and Genetic Diversity of Genes Involved in Quorum Sensing and Prodigiosin Biosynthesis in the Complete Genome Sequences of Serratia marcescens.

Quorum sensing is a cell density-dependent regulation of gene expression. N-acyl-l-homoserine lactone (AHL) is a major quorum-sensing signaling molecule in gram-negative bacteria and synthesized by the LuxI family protein. The genus Serratia is known as a producer of the red pigment, prodigiosin, whose biosynthesis is dependent on the pig gene cluster. Some Serratia strains regulate prodigiosin production via AHL-mediated quorum sensing, whereas there is red-pigmented Serratia strains without quorum-sensing system. In addition, nonpigmented Serratia marcescens, which does not produce prodigiosin, has also been isolated from natural and clinical environments. In this study, we aim to reveal the distribution and genetic diversity of quorum-sensing genes and pig gene cluster in the complete genome sequences of S. marcescens. We previously demonstrated that S. marcescens AS-1 regulates the production of prodigiosin via AHL-mediated quorum sensing. We sequenced the genomes of AS-1 and compared with the complete genomes of AS-1 and the other 34 strains of S. marcescens. The luxI homolog was present on 25 complete genome sequences. The deduced amino acid sequences of the luxI homolog were divided into three phylogenetic classes. In contrast, the pig gene cluster was present in the genome of seven S. marcescens strains and only two strains, AS-1 and N4-5 contained both the luxI homolog and pig gene cluster in their genome. It is therefore assumed that prodigiosin production and its regulation by quorum sensing are not essential for the life cycle of S. marcescens. © The Author(s) 2019. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.


April 21, 2020  |  

Complete genome sequence of a novel bacteriophage, PBKP05, infecting Klebsiella pneumoniae.

An increasing number of Klebsiella pneumoniae isolates have been found to be multi-drug resistant. A novel bacteriophage, PBKP05, which infects K. pneumoniae, was isolated and characterized. It has a linear double-stranded DNA genome of 30,240 base pairs in length. Its G+C content is 53%, and 47 putative open reading frames are functionally annotated. This phage can be a candidate material for phage therapy.


April 21, 2020  |  

Draft genome sequence of Streptococcus sp. strain NM isolated from head and neck cancer patients

Streptococcus sp. strain NM belonging to Firmicutes was isolated from head and neck cancer patients. Here, we report the draft genome sequence of strain NM with a size of approximately 1.90 Mbp and a mean G+C content of 39.3%. The draft genome included 1,845 coding sequences, and 12 ribosomal RNA and 58 transfer RNA genes. In the draft genome, genes involved in the antimicrobial resistance, hemolysis and defense system have been identified.


April 21, 2020  |  

Biomimetic hydroxyapatite nanocrystals are an active carrier for Salmonella bacteriophages.

The use of bacteriophages represents a valid alternative to conventional antimicrobial treatments, overcoming the widespread bacterial antibiotic resistance phenomenon. In this work, we evaluated whether biomimetic hydroxyapatite (HA) nanocrystals are able to enhance some properties of bacteriophages. The final goal of this study was to demonstrate that biomimetic HA nanocrystals can be used for bacteriophage delivery in the context of bacterial infections, and contribute – at the same time – to enhance some of the biological properties of the same bacteriophages such as stability, preservation, antimicrobial activity, and so on.Phage isolation and characterization were carried out by using Mitomycin C and following double-layer agar technique. The biomimetic HA water suspension was synthesized in order to obtain nanocrystals with plate-like morphology and nanometric dimensions. The interaction of phages with the HA was investigated by dynamic light scattering and Zeta potential analyses. The cytotoxicity and intracellular killing activities of the phage-HA complex were evaluated in human hepatocellular carcinoma HepG2 cells. The bacterial inhibition capacity of the complex was assessed on chicken minced meat samples infected with Salmonella Rissen.Our data highlighted that the biomimetic HA nanocrystal-bacteriophage complex was more stable and more effective than phages alone in all tested experimental conditions.Our results evidenced the important contribution of biomimetic HA nanocrystals: they act as an excellent carrier for bacteriophage delivery and enhance its biological characteristics. This study confirmed the significant role of the mineral HA when it is complexed with biological entities like bacteriophages, as it has been shown for molecules such as lactoferrin.


April 21, 2020  |  

The complete mitochondrial genome of the New Zealand parasitic roundworm Haemonchus contortus (Trichostrongyloidea: Haemonchidae) field strain NZ_Hco_NP

The complete mitochondrial genome of the New Zealand parasitic nematode Haemonchus contortus field strain NZ_Hco_NP was sequenced and annotated. The 14,001bp-long mitogenome contains 12 protein-coding genes (atp8 gene missing), two ribosomal RNAs, 22 transfer RNAs, and a 583bp non- coding region. Phylogenetic analysis showed that H. contortus NZ_Hco_NP forms a monophyletic clus- ter with the remaining three Haemonchidae species, and further illustrates the high levels of diversity and gene flow among Trichostrongylidae.


April 21, 2020  |  

Genome characterization of an extensively drug-resistant Streptococcus pneumoniae serotype 11A strain.

In this study, the whole genome sequences of two Streptococcus pneumoniae clinical isolates from South Korea were determined and compared. They were found to be the same serotype (11?A) and multilocus sequence typing analysis showed that they are single-locus variants (SLVs; ST8279 and ST166) of each other, differing at one allele (aroE). However, the ST8279 strain is extensively drug-resistant (XDR) whereas the ST166 strain is not. The genome of the XDR strain is very similar in structure to that of two previously reported genomes, AP200 (11?A:ST62) and 70585 (5:ST5803); however, some regions were inverted and there were some exogenous regions in the ST8279 strain. It was found that 6,502 single nucleotide polymorphisms are dispersed across the genome between the two serotype 11?A ST8279 and ST166 strains. Many of them are located in genes associated with antibiotic resistance. In addition, many amino acid differences were also identified in genes involved in DNA repair (mutL, uvrA and uvrC) and recombination (recU, recR and recA). On the basis of these results, it was inferred that the XDR strain did not evolve from its SLV via a single recombination event involving a large portion of the genome including the aroE gene. Rather, the strain likely evolved through many point mutations and recombination events involving small portions of the genome. © 2019 The Societies and John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd.


April 21, 2020  |  

Evolution of Antibiotic Synthesis Gene Clusters in the Streptomyces globisporus TFH56, Isolated from Tomato Flower.

Streptomyces species are known to produce various bioactive metabolites that can prevent plant diseases. Previously, the Streptomyces strain TFH56 was found to inhibit the gray mold pathogen, Botrytis cinerea, in tomato flower. In this study, the genome sequence of strain TFH56 was acquired using the Pacific Biosciences RS II platform. Three linear sequences (7.67 Mbp in total) were obtained. Based on average nucleotide identity, strain TFH56 was classified as Streptomyces globisporus, which is consistent with the presence of a linear chromosome and linear plasmids. Moreover, as with other examples of S. globisporus, the genome of strain TFH56 included a caryolan-1-ol synthase gene, a conprimycin synthetic gene cluster, and a lidamycin synthetic gene cluster.Copyright © 2019 Cho, Kwak.


April 21, 2020  |  

Genome analysis and genetic transformation of a water surface-floating microalga Chlorococcum sp. FFG039.

Microalgal harvesting and dewatering are the main bottlenecks that need to be overcome to tap the potential of microalgae for production of valuable compounds. Water surface-floating microalgae form robust biofilms, float on the water surface along with gas bubbles entrapped under the biofilms, and have great potential to overcome these bottlenecks. However, little is known about the molecular mechanisms involved in the water surface-floating phenotype. In the present study, we analysed the genome sequence of a water surface-floating microalga Chlorococcum sp. FFG039, with a next generation sequencing technique to elucidate the underlying mechanisms. Comparative genomics study with Chlorococcum sp. FFG039 and other non-floating green microalgae revealed some of the unique gene families belonging to this floating microalga, which may be involved in biofilm formation. Furthermore, genetic transformation of this microalga was achieved with an electroporation method. The genome information and transformation techniques presented in this study will be useful to obtain molecular insights into the water surface-floating phenotype of Chlorococcum sp. FFG039.


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