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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Chromosome and plasmids of the tick-borne relapsing fever agent Borrelia hermsii.

The zoonotic pathogen Borrelia hermsii bears its multiple paralogous genes for variable antigens on several linear plasmids. Application of combined long-read and short-read next-generation sequencing provided complete sequences for antigen-encoding plasmids as well as other linear and circular plasmids and the linear chromosome of the genome. Copyright © 2016 Barbour.

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Species- and strain-specific adaptation of the HSP70 super family in pathogenic trypanosomatids.

All eukaryotic genomes encode multiple members of the heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) family, which evolved distinctive structural and functional features in response to specific environmental constraints. Phylogenetic analysis of this protein family thus can inform on genetic and molecular mechanisms that drive species-specific environmental adaptation. Here we use the eukaryotic pathogen Leishmania spp. as a model system to investigate the evolution of the HSP70 protein family in an early-branching eukaryote that is prone to gene amplification and adapts to cytotoxic host environments by stress-induced and chaperone-dependent stage differentiation. Combining phylogenetic and comparative analyses of trypanosomatid genomes, draft genome of…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

High-quality genome assembly and annotation for Plasmodium coatneyi, generated using single-molecule real-time PacBio technology.

Plasmodium coatneyi is a protozoan parasite species that causes simian malaria and is an excellent model for studying disease caused by the human malaria parasite, P. falciparum Here we report the complete (nontelomeric) genome sequence of P. coatneyi Hackeri generated by the application of only Pacific Biosciences RS II (PacBio RS II) single-molecule real-time (SMRT) high-resolution sequence technology and assembly using the Hierarchical Genome Assembly Process (HGAP). This is the first Plasmodium genome sequence reported to use only PacBio technology. This approach has proven to be superior to short-read only approaches for this species. Copyright © 2016 Chien et al.

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

The Ditylenchus destructor genome provides new insights into the evolution of plant parasitic nematodes.

Plant-parasitic nematodes were found in 4 of the 12 clades of phylum Nematoda. These nematodes in different clades may have originated independently from their free-living fungivorous ancestors. However, the exact evolutionary process of these parasites is unclear. Here, we sequenced the genome sequence of a migratory plant nematode, Ditylenchus destructor We performed comparative genomics among the free-living nematode, Caenorhabditis elegans and all the plant nematodes with genome sequences available. We found that, compared with C. elegans, the core developmental control processes underwent heavy reduction, though most signal transduction pathways were conserved. We also found D. destructor contained more homologies of…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Hyper-eccentric structural genes in the mitochondrial genome of the algal parasite Hemistasia phaeocysticola.

Diplonemid mitochondria are considered to have very eccentric structural genes. Coding regions of individual diplonemid mitochondrial genes are fragmented into small pieces and found on different circular DNAs. Short RNAs transcribed from each DNA molecule mature through a unique RNA maturation process involving assembly and three types of RNA editing (i.e., U insertion and A-to-I & C-to-U substitutions), although the molecular mechanism(s) of RNA maturation and the evolutionary history of these eccentric structural genes still remain to be understood. Since the gene fragmentation pattern is generally conserved among the diplonemid species studied to date, it was considered that their structural…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Expansion of lysine-rich repeats in Plasmodium proteins generates novel localisation sequences that target the periphery of the host erythrocyte.

Repetitive low-complexity sequences, mostly assumed to have no function, are common in proteins that are exported by the malaria parasite into its host erythrocyte. We identify a group of exported proteins containing short lysine-rich tandemly repeated sequences that are sufficient to localise to the erythrocyte periphery where key virulence-related modifications to the plasma membrane and the underlying cytoskeleton are known to occur. Efficiency of targeting is dependent on repeat number, indicating that novel targeting modules could evolve by expansion of short lysine-rich sequences. Indeed, expression GARP fragments from different species shows that two novel targeting sequences have arisen via the…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Variant exported blood-stage proteins encoded by Plasmodium multigene families are expressed in liver stages where they are exported into the parasitophorous vacuole.

Many variant proteins encoded by Plasmodium-specific multigene families are exported into red blood cells (RBC). P. falciparum-specific variant proteins encoded by the var, stevor and rifin multigene families are exported onto the surface of infected red blood cells (iRBC) and mediate interactions between iRBC and host cells resulting in tissue sequestration and rosetting. However, the precise function of most other Plasmodium multigene families encoding exported proteins is unknown. To understand the role of RBC-exported proteins of rodent malaria parasites (RMP) we analysed the expression and cellular location by fluorescent-tagging of members of the pir, fam-a and fam-b multigene families. Furthermore,…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

De novo mutations resolve disease transmission pathways in clonal malaria

Detecting de novo mutations in viral and bacterial pathogens enables researchers to reconstruct detailed networks of disease transmission and is a key technique in genomic epidemiology. However, these techniques have not yet been applied to the malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, in which a larger genome, slower generation times, and a complex life cycle make them difficult to implement. Here, we demonstrate the viability of de novo mutation studies in P. falciparum for the first time. Using a combination of sequencing, library preparation, and genotyping methods that have been optimized for accuracy in low-complexity genomic regions, we have detected de novo…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Genome sequence of Trypanosoma cruzi strain Bug2148.

Trypanosoma cruzi belongs to the group of mitochondrion-containing eukaryotes and has a highly plastic genome, unusual gene organization, and complex mechanisms for gene expression (polycistronic transcription). We report here the genome sequence of strain Bug2148, the first genomic sequence belonging to cluster TcV, which has been related to vertical transmission. Copyright © 2018 Callejas-Hernández et al.

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