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April 1, 2019

Functional genomics of the rapidly replicating bacterium Vibrio natriegens by CRISPRi.

The fast-growing Gram-negative bacterium Vibrio natriegens is an attractive microbial system for molecular biology and biotechnology due to its remarkably short generation time1,2 and metabolic prowess3,4. However, efforts to uncover and utilize the mechanisms underlying its rapid growth are hampered by the scarcity of functional genomic data. Here, we develop a pooled genome-wide clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) interference (CRISPRi) screen to identify a minimal set of genes required for rapid wild-type growth. Targeting 4,565 (99.7%) of predicted protein-coding genes, our screen uncovered core genes comprising putative essential and growth-supporting genes that are enriched for respiratory pathways. We…

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March 1, 2019

Complete Genome Sequence of “Candidatus Thioglobus sp.” Strain NP1, an Open-Ocean Isolate from the SUP05 Clade of Marine Gammaproteobacteria

Candidatus Thioglobus sp.textquotedblright strain NP1 is an open-ocean isolate from the SUP05 clade of Gammaproteobacteria. Whole-genome comparisons of strain NP1 to other sequenced isolates from the SUP05 clade indicate that it represents a new species of SUP05 that lacks the ability to fix inorganic carbon using the Calvin-Benson-Bassham cycle.

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March 1, 2019

Pandoravirus Celtis Illustrates the Microevolution Processes at Work in the Giant Pandoraviridae Genomes.

With genomes of up to 2.7 Mb propagated in µm-long oblong particles and initially predicted to encode more than 2000 proteins, members of the Pandoraviridae family display the most extreme features of the known viral world. The mere existence of such giant viruses raises fundamental questions about their origin and the processes governing their evolution. A previous analysis of six newly available isolates, independently confirmed by a study including three others, established that the Pandoraviridae pan-genome is open, meaning that each new strain exhibits protein-coding genes not previously identified in other family members. With an average increment of about 60…

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March 1, 2019

Insight into the genome and brackish water adaptation strategies of toxic and bloom-forming Baltic Sea Dolichospermum sp. UHCC 0315.

The Baltic Sea is a shallow basin of brackish water in which the spatial salinity gradient is one of the most important factors contributing to species distribution. The Baltic Sea is infamous for its annual cyanobacterial blooms comprised of Nodularia spumigena, Aphanizomenon spp., and Dolichospermum spp. that cause harm, especially for recreational users. To broaden our knowledge of the cyanobacterial adaptation strategies for brackish water environments, we sequenced the entire genome of Dolichospermum sp. UHCC 0315, a species occurring not only in freshwater environments but also in brackish water. Comparative genomics analyses revealed a close association with Dolichospermum sp. UHCC…

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March 1, 2019

Complete Genome Sequence of Halorubrum ezzemoulense Strain Fb21.

Isolated from Aran-Bidgol Lake in Iran, and reported here, Halorubrum ezzemoulense strain Fb21 represents the first complete genome from this archaeal species. Local recombination in this genome is in stark contrast to equidistant recombination events in bacteria. The genome's GC bias, however, points to a genome architecture and origin that resemble those of a bacterium. Its availability, genome signatures, and frequent intragenomic recombination mean that Fb21 presents an attractive model organism for this species. Copyright © 2019 Feng et al.

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February 1, 2019

Mutations in sigma 70 transcription factor improves expression of functional eukaryotic membrane proteins in Escherichia coli.

Eukaryotic integral membrane proteins (IMPs) are difficult to study due to low functional expression levels. To investigate factors for efficient biogenesis of eukaryotic IMPs in the prokaryotic model organism Escherichia coli, important, e.g., for isotope-labeling for NMR, we selected for E. coli cells expressing high levels of functional G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) by FACS. Utilizing an E. coli strain library with all non-essential genes systematically deleted, we unexpectedly discovered upon whole-genome sequencing that the improved phenotype was not conferred by the deleted genes but by various subtle alterations in the "housekeeping" sigma 70 factor (RpoD). When analyzing effects of the…

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February 1, 2019

Draft genome sequence of Chromatium okenii isolated from the stratified alpine lake Cadagno.

Blooms of purple sulfur bacteria (PSB) are important drivers of the global sulfur cycling oxidizing reduced sulfur in intertidal flats and stagnant water bodies. Since the discovery of PSB Chromatium okenii in 1838, it has been found that this species is characteristic of for stratified, sulfidic environments worldwide and its autotrophic metabolism has been studied in depth since. We describe here the first high-quality draft genome of a large-celled, phototrophic, ?-proteobacteria of the genus Chromatium isolated from the stratified alpine Lake Cadagno, C. okenii strain LaCa. Long read technology was used to assemble the 3.78?Mb genome that encodes 3,016 protein-coding…

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February 1, 2019

Cobaviruses – a new globally distributed phage group infecting Rhodobacteraceae in marine ecosystems.

Bacteriophages are widely considered to influence bacterial communities, however most phages are still unknown or not studied well enough to understand their ecological roles. We have isolated two phages infecting Lentibacter sp. SH36, affiliated with the marine Roseobacter group, and retrieved similar phage genomes from publicly available metagenomics databases. Phylogenetic analysis placed the new phages within the Cobavirus group, in the here newly proposed genus Siovirus and subfamily Riovirinae of the Podoviridae. Gene composition and presence of direct terminal repeats in cultivated cobaviruses point toward a genome replication and packaging strategy similar to the T7 phage. Investigation of the genomes…

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February 1, 2019

Hybridization is a recurrent evolutionary stimulus in wild yeast speciation.

Hybridization can result in reproductively isolated and phenotypically distinct lineages that evolve as independent hybrid species. How frequently hybridization leads to speciation remains largely unknown. Here we examine the potential recurrence of hybrid speciation in the wild yeast Saccharomyces paradoxus in North America, which comprises two endemic lineages SpB and SpC, and an incipient hybrid species, SpC*. Using whole-genome sequences from more than 300 strains, we uncover the hybrid origin of another group, SpD, that emerged from hybridization between SpC* and one of its parental species, the widespread SpB. We show that SpD has the potential to evolve as a…

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February 1, 2019

Medusavirus, a novel large DNA virus discovered from hot spring water.

Recent discoveries of new large DNA viruses reveal high diversity in their morphologies, genetic repertoires, and replication strategies. Here, we report the novel features of Medusavirus, a large DNA virus newly isolated from hot spring water in Japan. Medusavirus with a diameter of 260 nm shows a T=277 icosahedral capsid with unique spherical-headed spikes on its surface. It has a 381 kb genome encoding 461 putative proteins, 86 of which have their closest homologs in Acanthamoeba castellanii, whereas 279 (61%) are ORFans. The virus lacking the genes of DNA topoisomerase II and RNA polymerase showed that the DNA replication takes…

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February 1, 2019

Adaptive Strategies in a Poly-Extreme Environment: Differentiation of Vegetative Cells in Serratia ureilytica and Resistance to Extreme Conditions.

Poly-extreme terrestrial habitats are often used as analogs to extra-terrestrial environments. Understanding the adaptive strategies allowing bacteria to thrive and survive under these conditions could help in our quest for extra-terrestrial planets suitable for life and understanding how life evolved in the harsh early earth conditions. A prime example of such a survival strategy is the modification of vegetative cells into resistant resting structures. These differentiated cells are often observed in response to harsh environmental conditions. The environmental strain (strain Lr5/4) belonging to Serratia ureilytica was isolated from a geothermal spring in Lirima, Atacama Desert, Chile. The Atacama Desert is…

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