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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Methyltransferases acquired by lactococcal 936-type phage provide protection against restriction endonuclease activity

BACKGROUND:So-called 936-type phages are among the most frequently isolated phages in dairy facilities utilising Lactococcus lactis starter cultures. Despite extensive efforts to control phage proliferation and decades of research, these phages continue to negatively impact cheese production in terms of the final product quality and consequently, monetary return.RESULTS:Whole genome sequencing and in silico analysis of three 936-type phage genomes identified several putative (orphan) methyltransferase (MTase)-encoding genes located within the packaging and replication regions of the genome. Utilising SMRT sequencing, methylome analysis was performed on all three phages, allowing the identification of adenine modifications consistent with N-6 methyladenine sequence methylation, which…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Diversification of bacterial genome content through distinct mechanisms over different timescales.

Bacterial populations often consist of multiple co-circulating lineages. Determining how such population structures arise requires understanding what drives bacterial diversification. Using 616 systematically sampled genomes, we show that Streptococcus pneumoniae lineages are typically characterized by combinations of infrequently transferred stable genomic islands: those moving primarily through transformation, along with integrative and conjugative elements and phage-related chromosomal islands. The only lineage containing extensive unique sequence corresponds to a set of atypical unencapsulated isolates that may represent a distinct species. However, prophage content is highly variable even within lineages, suggesting frequent horizontal transmission that would necessitate rapidly diversifying anti-phage mechanisms to prevent…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Expansion of the genetic toolkit for metabolic engineering of Clostridium pasteurianum: chromosomal gene disruption of the endogenous CpaAI restriction enzyme.

Clostridium pasteurianum is one of the most promising biofuel producers within the genus Clostridium owing to its unique metabolic ability to ferment glycerol into butanol. Although an efficient means is available for introducing foreign DNA to C. pasteurianum, major genetic tools, such as gene knockout, knockdown, or genome editing, are lacking, preventing metabolic engineering of C. pasteurianum.Here we present a methodology for performing chromosomal gene disruption in C. pasteurianum using the programmable lactococcus Ll.ltrB group II intron. Gene disruption was initially found to be impeded by inefficient electrotransformation of Escherichia coli-C. pasteurianum shuttle vectors, presumably due to host restriction. By…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Complete genome sequence of Bifidobacterium longum 105-A, a strain with high transformation efficiency.

Bifidobacterium longum 105-A shows high transformation efficiency and allows for the generation of gene knockout mutants through homologous recombination. Here, we report the complete genome sequence of strain 105-A. Genes encoding at least four putative restriction-modification systems were found in this genome, which might contribute to its transformation efficiency. Copyright © 2014 Kanesaki et al.

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Inconsistency of phenotypic and genomic characteristics of Campylobacter fetus subspecies requires reevaluation of current diagnostics.

Classifications of the Campylobacter fetus subspecies fetus and venerealis were first described in 1959 and were based on the source of isolation (intestinal versus genital) and the ability of the strains to proliferate in the genital tract of cows. Two phenotypic assays (1% glycine tolerance and H2S production) were described to differentiate the subspecies. Multiple molecular assays have been applied to differentiate the C. fetus subspecies, but none of these tests is consistent with the phenotypic identification methods. In this study, we defined the core genome and accessory genes of C. fetus, which are based on the closed genomes of…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Comparing the genomes of Helicobacter pylori clinical strain UM032 and mice-adapted derivatives.

Helicobacter pylori is a Gram-negative bacterium that persistently infects the human stomach inducing chronic inflammation. The exact mechanisms of pathogenesis are still not completely understood. Although not a natural host for H. pylori, mouse infection models play an important role in establishing the immunology and pathogenicity of H. pylori. In this study, for the first time, the genome sequences of clinical H. pylori strain UM032 and mice-adapted derivatives, 298 and 299, were sequenced using the PacBio Single Molecule, Real-Time (SMRT) technology.Here, we described the single contig which was achieved for UM032 (1,599,441 bp), 298 (1,604,216 bp) and 299 (1,601,149 bp). Preliminary analysis suggested…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Methods for genome-wide methylome profiling of Campylobacter jejuni.

Methylation has a profound role in the regulation of numerous biological processes in bacteria including virulence. The study of methylation in bacteria has greatly advanced thanks to next-generation sequencing technologies. These technologies have expedited the process of uncovering unique features of many bacterial methylomes such as characterizing previously uncharacterized methyltransferases, cataloging genome-wide DNA methylations in bacteria, identifying the frequency of methylation at particular genomic loci, and revealing regulatory roles of methylation in the biology of various bacterial species. For instance, methylation has been cited as a potential source for the pathogenicity differences observed in C. jejuni strains with syntenic genomes…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

The third restriction-modification system from Thermus aquaticus YT-1: solving the riddle of two TaqII specificities.

Two restriction-modification systems have been previously discovered in Thermus aquaticus YT-1. TaqI is a 263-amino acid (aa) Type IIP restriction enzyme that recognizes and cleaves within the symmetric sequence 5′-TCGA-3′. TaqII, in contrast, is a 1105-aa Type IIC restriction-and-modification enzyme, one of a family of Thermus homologs. TaqII was originally reported to recognize two different asymmetric sequences: 5′-GACCGA-3′ and 5′-CACCCA-3′. We previously cloned the taqIIRM gene, purified the recombinant protein from Escherichia coli, and showed that TaqII recognizes the 5′-GACCGA-3′ sequence only. Here, we report the discovery, isolation, and characterization of TaqIII, the third R-M system from T. aquaticus YT-1.…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Clostridium chauvoei, an evolutionary dead-end pathogen.

Full genome sequences of 20 strains of Clostridium chauvoei, the etiological agent of blackleg of cattle and sheep, isolated from four different continents over a period of 64 years (1951-2015) were determined and analyzed. The study reveals that the genome of the species C. chauvoei is highly homogeneous compared to the closely related species C. perfringens, a widespread pathogen that affects human and many animal species. Analysis of the CRISPR locus is sufficient to differentiate most C. chauvoei strains and is the most heterogenous region in the genome, containing in total 187 different spacer elements that are distributed as 30…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Phase-variable methylation and epigenetic regulation by type I restriction-modification systems.

Epigenetic modifications in bacteria, such as DNA methylation, have been shown to affect gene regulation, thereby generating cells that are isogenic but with distinctly different phenotypes. Restriction-modification (RM) systems contain prototypic methylases that are responsible for much of bacterial DNA methylation. This review focuses on a distinctive group of type I RM loci that , through phase variation, can modify their methylation target specificity and can thereby switch bacteria between alternative patterns of DNA methylation. Phase variation occurs at the level of the target recognition domains of the hsdS (specificity) gene via reversible recombination processes acting upon multiple hsdS alleles.…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Genomics of Helicobacter pylori

As Helicobacter pylori infects half the world’s population and displays an extensive intraspecies diversity, genomics is a powerful tool to understand evolution and disease, to identify factors that confer higher risk of severe sequelae, and to find new approaches for therapy both among bacterial and host targets. In line with these objectives, this review article summarizes the major findings in Helicobacter genomics in papers published between April 2016 and March 2017.

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Dam and Dcm methylations prevent gene transfer into Clostridium pasteurianum NRRL B-598: development of methods for electrotransformation, conjugation, and sonoporation.

Butanol is currently one of the most discussed biofuels. Its use provides many benefits in comparison to bio-ethanol, but the price of its fermentative production is still high. Genetic improvements could help solve many problems associated with butanol production during ABE fermentation, such as its toxicity, low concentration achievable in the cultivation medium, the need for a relatively expensive substrate, and many more. Clostridium pasteurianum NRRL B-598 is non-type strain producing butanol, acetone, and a negligible amount of ethanol. Its main benefits are high oxygen tolerance, utilization of a wide range of carbon and nitrogen sources, and the availability of…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Structural insights into DNA sequence recognition by Type ISP restriction-modification enzymes.

Engineering restriction enzymes with new sequence specificity has been an unaccomplished challenge, presumably because of the complexity of target recognition. Here we report detailed analyses of target recognition by Type ISP restriction-modification enzymes. We determined the structure of the Type ISP enzyme LlaGI bound to its target and compared it with the previously reported structure of a close homologue that binds to a distinct target, LlaBIII. The comparison revealed that, although the two enzymes use almost a similar set of structural elements for target recognition, the residues that read the bases vary. Change in specificity resulted not only from appropriate…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Finished genome sequence and methylome of the cyanide-degrading Pseudomonas pseudoalcaligenes strain CECT5344 as resolved by single-molecule real-time sequencing.

Pseudomonas pseudoalcaligenes CECT5344 tolerates cyanide and is also able to utilize cyanide and cyano-derivatives as a nitrogen source under alkaline conditions. The strain is considered as candidate for bioremediation of habitats contaminated with cyanide-containing liquid wastes. Information on the genome sequence of the strain CECT5344 became available previously. The P. pseudoalcaligenes CECT5344 genome was now resequenced by applying the single molecule, real-time (SMRT(®)) sequencing technique developed by Pacific Biosciences. The complete and finished genome sequence of the strain consists of a 4,696,984 bp chromosome featuring a GC-content of 62.34%. Comparative analyses between the new and previous versions of the P.…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Complete nucleotide sequence of pH11, an IncHI2 plasmid conferring multi-antibiotic resistance and multi-heavy metal resistance genes in a clinical Klebsiella pneumoniae isolate.

The complete 284,628bp sequence of pH11, an IncHI2 plasmid, was determined through single-molecule, real-time (SMRT) sequencing. Harbored by a clinical Klebsiella pneumoniae strain H11, and isolated in Beijing, this plasmid contains multiple antibiotic resistance genes, including catA2, aac(6′)-Ib, strB, strA, dfrA19, blaTEM-1, blaSHV-12, sul1, qacE delta 1, ereA, arr2, and aac3. The aac(6′)-Ib is carried by a class I integron. Plasmid pH11 also carries several genes associated with resistance to heavy metals, such as tellurium, mercury, cobalt, zinc, nickel, copper, lead and cadmium. This plasmid exhibits numerous characteristics, including HipBA and RelBE toxin-antitoxin systems, two major transfer (Tra) regions closely…

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