June 1, 2021  |  

Comparative genome analysis of Clavibacter michiganensis subsp. michiganensis strains provides insights into genetic diversity and virulence.

Clavibacter michiganensis subsp. michiganensis (Cmm) is a gram positive actinomycete, causing bacterial canker of tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) a disease that can cause significant losses in tomato production. In this study, we determined the complete genome sequence of 13 California Cmm strains and one saprophytic Clavibacter strain using a combination of Ilumina and PacBio sequencing. The California Cmm strains have genome size (3.2 -3.3 mb) similar to the reference strain NCPPB382 (3.3 mb) with =98% sequence identity. Cmm strains from California share =92% genes (8-10% are noble genes) with the reference Cmm strain NCPPB382. Despite this similarity, we detected significant alternatives in California strains with respect to plasmid number, plasmid composition, and genomic island presence indicating acquisition of unique mechanisms controlling virulence. Plasmids pCM1 and pCM2, that were previously demonstrated to be required for NCPPB382 virulence, also differ in their presence and gene content across Cmm strains. pCM2 is absent in some Cmm strains and that still retain virulence in tomato. Saprophytic Clavibacter possess a novel plasmid, pSCM, and lacks the majority of characterized virulence factors. Genome sequence information was also used to design specific and sensitive primer pairs for Cmm detection. A mechanistic understanding of how genomic changes have impacted Cmm virulence and survival across diverse strains will be necessary for developing a robust disease control strategies for bacterial canker of tomato.


April 21, 2020  |  

Whole-genome sequence of Arthrinium phaeospermum, a globally distributed pathogenic fungus.

Arthrinium phaeospermum (Corda) M.B. Ellis is a globally distributed pathogenic fungus with a wide host range; its hosts include not only plants, but also humans and animals. This study aimed to develop genomic resources for A. phaeospermum to provide solid data and a theoretical basis for further studies of its pathogenesis, transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics and RNA genomics. The genome was obtained from the mycelia of the strain AP-Z13 using a combination of analyses with the high-throughput Illumina HiSeq 4000 system and PacBio RSII LongRead sequencing platform. Functional annotation was performed by BLASTing protein sequences against those in different publicly available databases to obtain their corresponding annotations. The genome is 48.45?Mb in size, with an N90 scaffold size of 1,931,147?bp, and encodes 19,836 putative predicted genes. This is the first report of the genome-scale assembly and annotation for A. phaeospermum, the first species in the genus Arthrinium to be subjected to whole genome sequencing. Copyright © 2019 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


April 21, 2020  |  

Updated assembly resource of Phytophthora ramorum Pr102 isolate incorporating long reads from PacBio sequencing.

The NA1 clonal lineage of Phytophthora ramorum is responsible for Sudden Oak Death, an epidemic that has devastated California’s coastal forest ecosystems. An NA1 isolate Pr102 derived from coast live oak in California was previously sequenced and reported with 65 Mb assembly containing 12 Mb gaps in 2576 scaffolds. Here we report an improved 70 Mb genome in 1512 scaffolds with 6752 bp gaps after incorporating PacBio P5-C3 longreads. This assembly contains 19494 gene models (average gene length 2515 bp) compared to 16134 genes (average gene length of 1673 bp) in the previous version. We predicted 29 new RXLRs and 76 new paralogs of a total 392 RXLRs from this assembly. We predicted 35 CRNs compared to 19 in earlier version with six paralogs. Our lncRNAs prediction identified 255 candidates. This new resource will be invaluable for future evolution studies on the invasive plant pathogen.


April 21, 2020  |  

Evidence of extensive intraspecific noncoding reshuffling in a 169-kb mitochondrial genome of a basidiomycetous fungus

Comparative genomics of fungal mitochondrial genomes (mitogenomes) have revealed a remarkable pattern of rearrangement between and within major phyla owing to horizontal gene transfer (HGT) and recombination. The role of recombination was exemplified at a finer evolutionary time scale in basidiomycetes group of fungi as they display a diversity of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) inheritance patterns. Here, we assembled mitogenomes of six species from the Hymenochaetales order of basidiomycetes and examined 59 mitogenomes from two genetic lineages of Pyrrhoderma noxium. Gene order is largely colinear while intergene regions are major determinants of mitogenome size variation. Substantial sequence divergence was found in shared introns consistent with high HGT frequency observed in yeasts, but we also identified a rare case where an intron was retained in five species since speciation. In contrast to the hyperdiversity observed in nuclear genomes of P. noxium, mitogenomes’ intraspecific polymorphisms at protein coding sequences are extremely low. Phylogeny based on introns revealed turnover as well as exchange of introns between two lineages. Strikingly, some strains harbor a mosaic origin of introns from both lineages. Analysis of intergenic sequence indicated substantial differences between and within lineages, and an expansion may be ongoing as a result of exchange between distal intergenes. These findings suggest that the evolution in mtDNAs is usually lineage specific but chimeric mitotypes are frequently observed, thus capturing the possible evolutionary processes shaping mitogenomes in a basidiomycete. The large mitogenome sizes reported in various basidiomycetes appear to be a result of interspecific reshuffling of intergenes.


April 21, 2020  |  

Genome sequence resource for Ilyonectria mors-panacis, causing rusty root rot of Panax notoginseng.

Ilyonectria mors-panacis is a serious disease hampering the production of Panax notoginseng, an important Chinese medicinal herb, widely used for its anti-inflammatory, anti-fatigue, hepato-protective, and coronary heart disease prevention effects. Here, we report the first Illumina-Pacbio hybrid sequenced draft genome assembly of I. mors-panacis strain G3B and its annotation. The availability of this genome sequence not only represents an important tool toward understanding the genetics behind the infection mechanism of I. mors-panacis strain G3B but also will help illuminate the complexities of the taxonomy of this species.


April 21, 2020  |  

Genomics-informed molecular detection of Xanthomonas vasicola pv. vasculorum strains causing severe bacterial leaf streak of corn.

Xanthomonas vasicola pv. vasculorum (syn. X. campestris pv. vasculorum) was initially identified as the causal agent of bacterial leaf streak of corn in South Africa. The pathovar vasculorum causes disease on sugarcane and corn, but a subset of these strains was noted for its increased disease severity in corn. This subset was re-classified as Xanthomonas campestris pv. zeae in the early 1990s and was found to have slightly different biochemical and genetic properties than isolates from sugarcane. There has been an emergence of X. campestris pv. zeae-like strains of X. vasicola pv. vasculorum in both the United States and Argentina since 2010. We performed whole genome sequencing on U.S. isolates to confirm their identity. Informed by comparative genomics, we then developed specific TaqMan qPCR and loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) assays for the detection of this specific subset of X. vasicola pv. vasculorum strains. The qPCR 4909 assay was tested against 27 xanthomonads (diverse representation), 32 DNA extractions from corn leaves confirmed as positive or negative for the bacterium, 41 X. vasicola pv. vasculorum isolates from corn in the United States and Argentina, and 31 additional bacteria associated with corn, sugarcane, or sorghum. In all cases the assay was shown to be specific for the X. vasicola pv. vasculorum isolates that cause more severe disease on corn. We then tested the LAMP 166 assay against the 27 xanthomonads and 32 corn leaf DNA samples, and we found this assay was also specific for this subset of X. vasicola pv. vasculorum isolates. We also developed a live/dead cells distinction protocol using propidium monoazide prior to DNA extraction for analyzing seed washes using these assays. These two detection assays can be useful for both diagnosticians and researchers to specifically identify the X. vasicola pv. vasculorum isolates that cause more severe symptoms on corn.


April 21, 2020  |  

Draft genome sequence resource of switchgrass rust pathogen, Puccinia novopanici isolate Ard-01.

Puccinia novopanici is an important biotrophic fungal pathogen that causes rust disease in switchgrass. Lack of genomic resources for P. novopanici has hampered the progress towards developing effective disease resistance against this pathogen. Therefore, we have sequenced the whole genome of P. novopanici and generated a framework to understand pathogenicity mechanisms, identify effectors, repeat element invasion, genome evolution, and comparative genomics among Puccinia species in the future. Long and short read sequences were generated from P. novopanici genomic DNA by PacBio and Illumina technologies, respectively, and assembled a 99.9 megabase (Mb) genome. Transcripts of P. novopanici were predicted from assembled genome using MAKER and were further validated by RNAseq data. The genome sequence information of P. novopanici will be a valuable resource for researchers working on monocot rusts and plant disease resistance in general.


April 21, 2020  |  

Genome Sequence Resource of a Puccinia striiformis Isolate infecting wheatgrass.

Stripe rust caused by Puccinia striiformis is a disastrous disease of cereal crops and various grasses. To date, fourteen stripe rust genomes are publicly available, including thirteen P. striiformis f. sp. tritici and one P. striiformis f. sp. hordei. In this study, one isolate (11-281) of P. striiformis collected from wheatgrass (Agropyron cristatum), which is avirulent to most of standard differential genotypes of wheat and barley, was sequenced, assembled, and annotated. The sequences were assembled to a draft genome of 84.75 Mb, which is comparable to previously sequenced P. striiformis f. sp. tritici and P. striiformis f. sp. hordei isolates. The draft genome comprised 381 scaffolds and contained 1,829 predicted secreted proteins. The high quality draft genome of the isolate is a valuable resource in shedding light on the evolution and pathogenicity of P. striiformis.


April 21, 2020  |  

Genome data of Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cubense race 1 and tropical race 4 isolates using long-read sequencing.

Fusarium wilt of banana is caused by the soil-borne fungal pathogen Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cubense (Foc). We generated two chromosome-level assemblies of Foc race 1 and tropical race 4 strains using single-molecule real-time sequencing. The Foc1 and FocTR4 assemblies had 35 and 29 contigs with contig N50 lengths of 2.08 Mb and 4.28 Mb, respectively. These two new references genomes represent a greater than 100-fold improvement over the contig N50 statistics of the previous short read-based Foc assemblies. The two high-quality assemblies reported here will be a valuable resource for the comparative analysis of Foc races at the pathogenic levels.


April 21, 2020  |  

Genome sequence resources for four phytopathogenic fungi from the Colletotrichum orbiculare species complex.

Colletotrichum orbiculare species complex fungi are hemibiotrophic plant pathogens that cause anthracnose of field crops and weeds. Members of this group have genomes that are remarkably expanded relative to other Colletotrichum fungi and compartmentalized into AT-rich, gene poor and GC-rich, gene rich regions. Here we present an updated version of the Colletotrichum orbiculare genome, as well as draft genomes of three other members from the C. orbiculare species complex; the alfalfa pathogen Colletotrichum trifolii, the prickly mallow pathogen Colletotrichum sidae and the burweed pathogen Colletotrichum spinosum. The data reported here will be important for comparative genomics analyses to identify factors that play a role in the evolution and maintenance of the expanded, compartmentalized genomes of these fungi which may contribute to their pathogenicity.


April 21, 2020  |  

Defining transgene insertion sites and off-target effects of homology-based gene silencing informs the use of functional genomics tools in Phytophthora infestans.

DNA transformation and homology-based transcriptional silencing are frequently used to assess gene function in Phytophthora. Since unplanned side-effects of these tools are not well-characterized, we used P. infestans to study plasmid integration sites and whether knockdowns caused by homology-dependent silencing spreads to other genes. Insertions occurred both in gene-dense and gene-sparse regions but disproportionately near the 5′ ends of genes, which disrupted native coding sequences. Microhomology at the recombination site between plasmid and chromosome was common. Studies of transformants silenced for twelve different gene targets indicated that neighbors within 500-nt were often co-silenced, regardless of whether hairpin or sense constructs were employed and the direction of transcription of the target. However, cis-spreading of silencing did not occur in all transformants obtained with the same plasmid. Genome-wide studies indicated that unlinked genes with partial complementarity with the silencing-inducing transgene were not usually down-regulated. We learned that hairpin or sense transgenes were not co-silenced with the target in all transformants, which informs how screens for silencing should be performed. We conclude that transformation and gene silencing can be reliable tools for functional genomics in Phytophthora but must be used carefully, especially by testing for the spread of silencing to genes flanking the target.


April 21, 2020  |  

Haplotype-phased genome assembly of virulent Phythophthora ramorum isolate ND886 facilitated by long-read sequencing reveals effector polymorphisms and copy number variation.

Phytophthora ramorum is a destructive pathogen that causes Sudden Oak Death. The genome sequence of P. ramorum isolate Pr102 was previously produced using Sanger reads, and contained 12 Mb of gaps. However, isolate Pr102 had shown reduced aggressiveness and genome abnormalities. In order to produce an improved genome assembly for P. ramorum, we performed long read sequencing of highly aggressive P. ramorum isolate CDFA1418886 (abbreviated as ND886). We generated a 60.5 Mb assembly of the ND886 genome using the Pacific Biosciences sequencing platform. The assembly includes 302 primary contigs (60.2 Mb) and 9 unplaced contigs (265 Kb). Additionally, we found a “Highly repetitive” component from the Pacbio unassembled unmapped reads containing tandem repeats that are not part of the 60.5 Mb genome. The overall repeat content in the primary assembly was much higher than the Pr102 Sanger version (48% vs. 29%) indicating that the long reads have captured repetitive regions effectively. The 302 primary contigs were phased into 345 haplotype blocks and 222,892 phased variants, of which the longest phased block was 1,513,201 bp with 7,265 phased variants. The improved phased assembly facilitated identification of 21 and 25 Crinkler effectors and 393 and 394 RXLR effector genes from two haplotypes. Of these, 24 and 25 RXLR effectors were newly predicted from Haplotype A and Haplotype B, respectively. In addition, 7 new paralogs of effector Avh207 were found in contig 54, not reported earlier. Comparison of the ND886 assembly with Pr102 V1 assembly suggests that several repeat-rich smaller scaffolds within the Pr102 V1 assembly were possibly misassembled; these regions are fully encompassed now in ND886 contigs. Our analysis further reveals that Pr102 is a heterokaryon with multiple nuclear types in the sequences corresponding to contig 10 of ND886 assembly.


April 21, 2020  |  

Draft Genome Sequence of Dicyma pulvinata Strain 414-3, a Mycoparasite of Cladosporium fulvum, Causal Agent of Tomato Leaf Mold.

Dicyma pulvinata strain 414-3, isolated from the surface of a tomato leaf, is a mycoparasitic fungus of Cladosporium fulvum, which causes leaf mold of tomato. We report here the draft genome sequence of strain 414-3, which will contribute to elucidating the molecular mechanisms involved in the mycoparasitism.Copyright © 2019 Sushida et al.


April 21, 2020  |  

High-Quality Draft Genome Sequence of Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cubense Strain 160527, a Causal Agent of Panama Disease.

Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cubense is the causal agent of banana Fusarium wilt, also known as Panama disease. Here, we present a high-quality genome sequence of F. oxysporum f. sp. cubense strain 160527. The genome assembly is composed of 12 contigs with a total assembly length of 51,139,495?bp (N50 contig length, 4,884,632?bp). Copyright © 2019 Asai et al.


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