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Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Amplification-free long-read sequencing of TCF4 expanded trinucleotide repeats in Fuchs Endothelial Corneal Dystrophy.

Amplification of a CAG trinucleotide motif (CTG18.1) within the TCF4 gene has been strongly associated with Fuchs Endothelial Corneal Dystrophy (FECD). Nevertheless, a small minority of clinically unaffected elderly patients who have expanded CTG18.1 sequences have been identified. To test the hypothesis that the CAG expansions in these patients are protected from FECD because they have interruptions within the CAG repeats, we utilized a combination of an amplification-free, long-read sequencing method and a new target-enrichment sequence analysis tool developed by Pacific Biosciences to interrogate the sequence structure of expanded repeats. The sequencing was successful in identifying a previously described interruption…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

The complete replicons of 16 Ensifer meliloti strains offer insights into intra- and inter-replicon gene transfer, transposon-associated loci, and repeat elements.

Ensifer meliloti (formerly Rhizobium meliloti and Sinorhizobium meliloti) is a model bacterium for understanding legume-rhizobial symbioses. The tripartite genome of E. meliloti consists of a chromosome, pSymA and pSymB, and in some instances strain-specific accessory plasmids. The majority of previous sequencing studies have relied on the use of assemblies generated from short read sequencing, which leads to gaps and assembly errors. Here we used PacBio-based, long-read assemblies and were able to assemble, de novo, complete circular replicons. In this study, we sequenced, de novo-assembled and analysed 10 E. meliloti strains. Sequence comparisons were also done with data from six previously…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

Comparative genomic analyses of Clavibacter michiganensis subsp. insidiosus and pathogenicity on Medicago truncatula.

Clavibacter michiganensis is the most economically important gram-positive bacterial plant pathogen with subspecies that cause serious diseases of maize, wheat, tomato, potato, and alfalfa. Much less is known about pathogenesis involving gram-positive plant pathogens than is known for gram-negative bacteria. Comparative genome analyses of C. michiganensis subspecies affecting tomato, potato, and maize have provided insights on pathogenicity. In this study, we identified strains of C. michiganensis subsp. insidiosus with contrasting pathogenicity on three accessions of the model legume Medicago truncatula. We generated complete genome sequences for two strains and compared these to a previously sequenced strain and genome sequences of…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

Utility of DNA, RNA, protein, and functional approaches to solve cryptic immunodeficiencies.

We report a female infant identified by newborn screening for severe combined immunodeficiencies (NBS SCID) with T cell lymphopenia (TCL). The patient had persistently elevated alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) with IgA deficiency, and elevated IgM. Gene sequencing for a SCID panel was uninformative. We sought to determine the cause of the immunodeficiency in this infant.We performed whole-exome sequencing (WES) on the patient and parents to identify a genetic diagnosis. Based on the WES result, we developed a novel flow cytometric panel for rapid assessment of DNA repair defects using blood samples. We also performed whole transcriptome sequencing (WTS) on fibroblast RNA from…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

Long-read sequencing across the C9orf72 ‘GGGGCC’ repeat expansion: implications for clinical use and genetic discovery efforts in human disease.

Many neurodegenerative diseases are caused by nucleotide repeat expansions, but most expansions, like the C9orf72 ‘GGGGCC’ (G4C2) repeat that causes approximately 5-7% of all amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and frontotemporal dementia (FTD) cases, are too long to sequence using short-read sequencing technologies. It is unclear whether long-read sequencing technologies can traverse these long, challenging repeat expansions. Here, we demonstrate that two long-read sequencing technologies, Pacific Biosciences’ (PacBio) and Oxford Nanopore Technologies’ (ONT), can sequence through disease-causing repeats cloned into plasmids, including the FTD/ALS-causing G4C2 repeat expansion. We also report the first long-read sequencing data characterizing the C9orf72 G4C2 repeat expansion…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Characterization of Class IIa bacteriocin resistance in Enterococcus faecium.

Vancomycin-resistant enterococci, particularly resistant Enterococcus faecium, pose an escalating threat in nosocomial environments because of their innate resistance to many antibiotics, including vancomycin, a treatment of last resort. Many class IIa bacteriocins strongly target these enterococci and may offer a potential alternative for the management of this pathogen. However, E. faecium’s resistance to these peptides remains relatively uncharacterized. Here, we explored the development of resistance of E. faecium to a cocktail of three class IIa bacteriocins: enterocin A, enterocin P, and hiracin JM79. We started by quantifying the frequency of resistance to these peptides in four clinical isolates of E.…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Complete genome sequence of Sulfuriferula sp. strain AH1, a sulfur-oxidizing autotroph isolated from weathered mine tailings from the Duluth Complex in Minnesota.

We report the closed and annotated genome sequence of Sulfuriferula sp. strain AH1. Strain AH1 has a 2,877,007-bp chromosome that includes a partial Sox system for inorganic sulfur oxidation and a complete nitrogen fixation pathway. It also has a single 39,138-bp plasmid with genes for arsenic and mercury resistance. Copyright © 2017 Jones et al.

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Complete genome sequence of Desulfovibrio desulfuricans strain G11, a model sulfate-reducing, hydrogenotrophic, and syntrophic partner organism.

Here, we report the draft genome of the Gram-negative, sulfate-reducing bacterium Desulfovibrio desulfuricans strain G11. Isolated from a rumen fluid enrichment, this culture has been a model syntrophic partner due to its metabolic flexibility. The assembly yielded a single circular chromosome of 3,414,943 bp and a 57% G+C content. Copyright © 2017 Sheik et al.

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Isolation and genomic characterization of ‘Desulfuromonas soudanensis WTL’, a metal- and electrode-respiring bacterium from anoxic deep subsurface brine.

Reaching a depth of 713 m below the surface, the Soudan Underground Iron Mine (Soudan, MN, USA) transects a massive Archaean (2.7 Ga) banded iron formation, providing a remarkably accessible window into the terrestrial deep biosphere. Despite organic carbon limitation, metal-reducing microbial communities are present in potentially ancient anoxic brines continuously emanating from exploratory boreholes on Level 27. Using graphite electrodes deposited in situ as bait, we electrochemically enriched and isolated a novel halophilic iron-reducing Deltaproteobacterium, ‘Desulfuromonas soudanensis’ strain WTL, from an acetate-fed three-electrode bioreactor poised at +0.24 V (vs. standard hydrogen electrode). Cyclic voltammetry revealed that ‘D. soudanensis’ releases…

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