September 22, 2019  |  

Long-read sequencing and de novo assembly of a Chinese genome.

Short-read sequencing has enabled the de novo assembly of several individual human genomes, but with inherent limitations in characterizing repeat elements. Here we sequence a Chinese individual HX1 by single-molecule real-time (SMRT) long-read sequencing, construct a physical map by NanoChannel arrays and generate a de novo assembly of 2.93?Gb (contig N50: 8.3?Mb, scaffold N50: 22.0?Mb, including 39.3?Mb N-bases), together with 206?Mb of alternative haplotypes. The assembly fully or partially fills 274 (28.4%) N-gaps in the reference genome GRCh38. Comparison to GRCh38 reveals 12.8?Mb of HX1-specific sequences, including 4.1?Mb that are not present in previously reported Asian genomes. Furthermore, long-read sequencing of the transcriptome reveals novel spliced genes that are not annotated in GENCODE and are missed by short-read RNA-Seq. Our results imply that improved characterization of genome functional variation may require the use of a range of genomic technologies on diverse human populations.


September 22, 2019  |  

Genome analysis of clinical multilocus sequence Type 11 Klebsiella pneumoniae from China.

The increasing prevalence of KPC-producing Klebsiella pneumoniae strains in clinical settings has been largely attributed to dissemination of organisms of specific multilocus sequence types, such as ST258 and ST11. Compared with the ST258 clone, which is prevalent in North America and Europe, ST11 is common in China but information regarding its genetic features remains scarce. In this study, we performed detailed genetic characterization of ST11 K. pneumoniae strains by analyzing whole-genome sequences of 58 clinical strains collected from diverse geographic locations in China. The ST11 genomes were found to be highly heterogeneous and clustered into at least three major lineages based on the patterns of single-nucleotide polymorphisms. Exhibiting five different capsular types, these ST11 strains were found to harbor multiple resistance and virulence determinants such as the blaKPC-2 gene, which encodes carbapenemase, and the yersiniabactin-associated virulence genes irp, ybt and fyu. Moreover, genes encoding the virulence factor aerobactin and the regulator of the mucoid phenotype (rmpA) were detectable in six genomes, whereas genes encoding salmochelin were found in three genomes. In conclusion, our data indicated that carriage of a wide range of resistance and virulence genes constitutes the underlying basis of the high level of prevalence of ST11 in clinical settings. Such findings provide insight into the development of novel strategies for prevention, diagnosis and treatment of K. pneumoniae infections.


July 7, 2019  |  

IncI1 plasmids encoding various blaCTX-Ms contributed to ceftriaxone resistance in Salmonella Enteritidis in China.

Resistance to extended spectrum ß-lactams in Salmonella, in particular serotypes such as S. Enteritidis that are frequently associated with clinical infections, is a serious public health concern. In this study, phenotypic characterization of 433 clinical S. Enteritidis strains obtained from a nationwide collection of China CDC during the period of 2005~2010 depicted an increasing trend of resistance to ceftriaxone from 2008 onwards. Seventeen (4%) of the strains were found to be resistant to ceftriaxone, 7% to ciprofloxacin and 0.7% to both ciprofloxacin and ceftriaxone. Most of the ceftriaxone-resistant S. Enteritidis strains (15/17) were genetically unrelated, and originated from Henan province. The complete sequence of an IncI1 plasmid pSE115 which belonged to a novel Sequence Type was obtained. This 87,255bp IncI1 plasmid was found to harbour a blaCTX-M-14 gene located in a novel Multidrug Resistance Region (MRR) within the tra locus. Although the majority of strains were also found to contain conjugative IncI1 plasmids of similar size to pSE115(~90kb) and harbor a variety of blaCTX-MGroup 1 and Group 9 elements, the novel MRR site at the tra locus in pSE115 was not detectable in the other IncI1 plasmids. Findings in this study show that cephalosporin resistance in S. Enteritidis strains collected in China was mainly due to dissemination of blaCTX-M-encoding IncI1 plasmids, resembling the situation in which IncI1 plasmids serve as major vectors of blaCTX-M variants in other members of Enterobacteriaceae. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.


July 7, 2019  |  

Comparative genomic and regulatory analyses of natamycin production of Streptomyces lydicus A02.

Streptomyces lydicus A02 is used by industry because it has a higher natamycin-producing capacity than the reference strain S. natalensis ATCC 27448. We sequenced the complete genome of A02 using next-generation sequencing platforms, and to achieve better sequence coverage and genome assembly, we utilized single-molecule real-time (SMRT) sequencing. The assembled genome comprises a 9,307,519-bp linear chromosome with a GC content of 70.67%, and contained 8,888 predicted genes. Comparative genomics and natamycin biosynthetic gene cluster (BGC) analysis showed that BGC are highly conserved among evolutionarily diverse strains, and they also shared closer genome evolution compared with other Streptomyces species. Forty gene clusters were predicted to involve in the secondary metabolism of A02, and it was richly displayed in two-component signal transduction systems (TCS) in the genome, indicating a complex regulatory systems and high diversity of metabolites. Disruption of the phoP gene of the phoR-phoP TCS and nsdA gene confirmed phosphate sensitivity and global negative regulation of natamycin production. The genome sequence and analyses presented in this study provide an important molecular basis for research on natamycin production in Streptomyces, which could facilitate rational genome modification to improve the industrial use of A02.


July 7, 2019  |  

Genetic characterization of mcr-1-bearing plasmids to depict molecular mechanisms underlying dissemination of the colistin resistance determinant.

To analyse and compare mcr-1-bearing plasmids from animal Escherichia coli isolates, and to investigate potential mechanisms underlying dissemination of mcr-1.Ninety-seven ESBL-producing E. coli strains isolated from pig farms in China were screened for the mcr-1 gene. Fifteen mcr-1-positive strains were subjected to molecular characterization and bioinformatic analysis of the mcr-1-bearing plasmids that they harboured.Three major types of mcr-1-bearing plasmids were recovered: IncX4 (~33 kb), IncI2 (~60 kb) and IncHI2 (~216-280 kb), among which the IncX4 and IncI2 plasmids were found to harbour the mcr-1 gene only, whereas multiple resistance elements including blaCTX-M, blaCMY, blaTEM, fosA, qnrS, floR and oqxAB were detected, in various combinations, alongside mcr-1 in the IncHI2 plasmids. The profiles of mcr-1-bearing plasmids in the test strains were highly variable, with coexistence of two mcr-1-bearing plasmids being common. However, the MIC of colistin was not affected by the number of mcr-1-carrying plasmids harboured. Comparative analysis of the plasmids showed that they contained an mcr-1 gene cassette with varied structures (mcr-1-orf, ISApl1-mcr-1-orf and Tn6330), with the IncHI2 type being the most active in acquiring foreign resistance genes. A novel transposon, Tn6330, with the structure ISApl1-mcr-1-orf-ISApl1 was found to be the key element mediating translocation of mcr-1 into various plasmid backbones through formation of a circular intermediate.The mcr-1 gene can be disseminated via multiple mobile elements including Tn6330, its circular intermediate and plasmids harbouring such elements. It is often co-transmitted with other resistance determinants through IncHI2 plasmids. The functional mechanism of Tn6330, a typical composite transposon harbouring mcr-1, should be further investigated.© The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.


July 7, 2019  |  

IS26-mediated formation of a virulence and resistance plasmid in Salmonella Enteritidis.

To characterize a novel virulence-resistance plasmid pSE380T carried by a Salmonella enterica serotype Enteritidis clinical strain SE380.The plasmid pSE380T was conjugated to Escherichia coli strain J53 and sequenced by PacBio RSII, followed by subsequent annotation and genetic analysis.Sequence analysis of this plasmid revealed that the entire Salmonella Enteritidis-specific virulence plasmid, pSEN, had been incorporated into an IncHI2 MDR plasmid, which comprises the cephalosporin and fosfomycin resistance determinants blaCTX-M-14 and fosA3. Based on BLAST analysis and scrutiny of insertion footprints, the insertion event was found to involve a replicative transposition process mediated by IS26, an IS element frequently detected in various resistance plasmids. The resulting pSE380T plasmid also comprises backbone elements of IncHI2 and IncFIA plasmids, producing a rare fusion product that simultaneously encodes functional features of both, i.e. virulence, resistance and high transmissibility.This is a novel hybrid plasmid mediating MDR and virulence from a clinical Salmonella Enteritidis strain. This plasmid is likely to be transmissible amongst various serotypes of Salmonella and other Enterobacteriaceae species, rendering a wide range of bacterial pathogens resistant to cephalosporins and fosfomycin, and further enhancing their virulence potential. It will be important to monitor the spread and further evolution of this plasmid among the Enterobacteriaceae strains.© The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.


July 7, 2019  |  

Complete genome sequence of Bacillus vallismortis NBIF-001, a novel strain from Shangri-La, China, that has high activity against Fusarium oxysporum.

Bacillus vallismortis NBIF-001, a Gram-positive bacterium, was isolated from soil in Shangri-La, China. Here, we provide the complete genome sequence of this bacterium, which has a 3,929,787-bp-long genome, including 4,030 protein-coding genes and 195 RNA genes. This strain possesses a number of genes encoding virulence factors of pathogens. Copyright © 2017 Liu et al.


July 7, 2019  |  

Deciphering the streamlined genome of Streptomyces xiamenensis 318 as the producer of the anti-fibrotic drug candidate xiamenmycin.

Streptomyces xiamenensis 318, a moderate halophile isolated from a mangrove sediment, produces the anti-fibrotic compound xiamenmycin. The whole genome sequence of strain 318 was obtained through long-read single-molecule real-time (SMRT) sequencing, high-throughput Illumina HiSeq and 454 pyrosequencing technologies. The assembled genome comprises a linear chromosome as a single contig of 5,961,401-bp, which is considerably smaller than other reported complete genomes of the genus Streptomyces. Based on the antiSMASH pipeline, a total of 21?gene clusters were predicted to be involved in secondary metabolism. The gene cluster responsible for the biosynthesis of xiamenmycin resides in a strain-specific 61,387-bp genomic island belonging to the left-arm region. A core metabolic network consisting of 104 reactions that supports xiamenmycin biosynthesis was constructed to illustrate the necessary precursors derived from the central metabolic pathway. In accordance with the finding of a putative ikarugamycin gene cluster in the genome, the targeted chemical profiling of polycyclic tetramate macrolactams (PTMs) resulted in the identification of ikarugamycin. A successful genome mining for bioactive molecules with different skeletons suggests that the naturally minimized genome of S. xiamenensis 318 could be used as a blueprint for constructing a chassis cell with versatile biosynthetic capabilities for the production of secondary metabolites.


July 7, 2019  |  

Genome of Cnaphalocrocis medinalis granulovirus, the first Crambidae-infecting betabaculovirus isolated from rice leaffolder to sequenced.

Cnaphalocrocis medinalis is a major pest of rice in South and South-East Asia. Insecticides are the major means farmers use for management. A naturally occurring baculovirus, C. medinalis granulovirus (CnmeGV), has been isolated from the larvae and this has the potential for use as microbial agent. Here, we described the complete genome sequence of CnmeGV and compared it to other baculovirus genomes. The genome of CnmeGV is 112,060 base pairs in length, has a G+C content of 35.2%. It contains 133 putative open reading frames (ORFs) of at least 150 nucleotides. A hundred and one (101) of these ORFs are homologous to other baculovirus genes including 37 baculovirus core genes. Thirty-two (32) ORFs are unique to CnmeGV with no homologues detected in the GeneBank and 53 tandem repeats (TRs) with sequence length from 25 to 551 nt intersperse throughout the genome of CnmeGV. Six (6) homologous regions (hrs) were identified interspersed throughout the genome. Hr2 contains 11 imperfect palindromes and a high content of AT sequence (about 73%). The unique ORF28 contains a coiled-coil region and a zinc finger-like domain of 4-50 residues specialized by two C2C2 zinc finger motifs that putatively bound two atoms of zinc. ORF21 encoding a chit-1 protein suggesting a horizontal gene transfer from alphabaculovirus. The putative protein presents two carbohydrate-binding module family 14 (CBM_14) domains rather than other homologues detected from betabaculovirus that only contains one chit-binding region. Gene synteny maps showed the colinearity of sequenced betabaculovirus. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that CnmeGV grouped in the betabaculovirus, with a close relation to AdorGV. The cladogram obtained in this work grouped the 17 complete GV genomes in one monophyletic clade. CnmeGV represents a new crambidae host-isolated virus species from the genus Betabaculovirus and is most closely relative of AdorGV. The analyses and information derived from this study will provide a better understanding of the pathological symptoms caused by this virus and its potential use as a microbial pesticide.


July 7, 2019  |  

Genetic characterization of a blaVEB-2-carrying plasmid in Vibrio parahaemolyticus.

This study reports the first detection of blaVEB-2 gene in Vibrio parahaemolyticus strain isolated from a shrimp sample. The blaVEB-2 was carried on a novel Inc type plasmid, was likely to originate from aquatic organisms upon comparison with other known genetic elements in the GenBank. However, the plasmid contains resistance elements usually harbored by members of Enterobacteriaceae, suggesting that gene transfer events occurred and contributed to the formation of this multidrug resistance-encoding plasmid. Copyright © 2016, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.


July 7, 2019  |  

Complete genome sequence and transcriptomic analysis of a novel marine strain Bacillus weihaiensis reveals the mechanism of brown algae degradation.

A novel marine strain representing efficient degradation ability toward brown algae was isolated, identified, and assigned to Bacillus weihaiensis Alg07. The alga-associated marine bacteria promote the nutrient cycle and perform important functions in the marine ecosystem. The de novo sequencing of the B. weihaiensis Alg07 genome was carried out. Results of gene annotation and carbohydrate-active enzyme analysis showed that the strain harbored enzymes that can completely degrade alginate and laminarin, which are the specific polysaccharides of brown algae. We also found genes for the utilization of mannitol, the major storage monosaccharide in the cell of brown algae. To understand the process of brown algae decomposition by B. weihaiensis Alg07, RNA-seq transcriptome analysis and qRT-PCR were performed. The genes involved in alginate metabolism were all up-regulated in the initial stage of kelp degradation, suggesting that the strain Alg07 first degrades alginate to destruct the cell wall so that the laminarin and mannitol are released and subsequently decomposed. The key genes involved in alginate and laminarin degradation were expressed in Escherichia coli and characterized. Overall, the model of brown algae degradation by the marine strain Alg07 was established, and novel alginate lyases and laminarinase were discovered.


July 7, 2019  |  

Complete sequence of a F33:A-:B- conjugative plasmid carrying the oqxAB, fosA3, and blaCTX-M-55 elements from a foodborne Escherichia coli strain.

This study reports the complete sequence of pE80, a conjugative IncFII plasmid recovered from an Escherichia coli strain isolated from chicken meat. This plasmid harbors multiple resistance determinants including oqxAB, fosA3, blaCTX-M-55, and blaTEM-1, and is a close variant of the recently reported p42-2 element, which was recovered from E. coli of veterinary source. Recovery of pE80 constitutes evidence that evolution or genetic re-arrangement of IncFII type plasmids residing in animal-borne organisms is an active event, which involves acquisition and integration of foreign resistance elements into the plasmid backbone. Dissemination of these plasmids may further compromise the effectiveness of current antimicrobial strategies.


July 7, 2019  |  

The molecular basis for the intramolecular migration (NIH shift) of the carboxyl group during para-hydroxybenzoate catabolism.

The NIH shift is a chemical rearrangement in which a substituent on an aromatic ring undergoes an intramolecular migration, primarily during an enzymatic hydroxylation reaction. The molecular mechanism for the NIH shift of a carboxyl group has remained a mystery for 40 years. Here, we elucidate the molecular mechanism of the reaction in the conversion of para-hydroxybenzoate (PHB) to gentisate (GA, 2, 5-dihydroxybenzoate). Three genes (phgABC) from the PHB utilizer Brevibacillus laterosporus PHB-7a encode enzymes (p-hydroxybenzoyl-CoA ligase, p-hydroxybenzoyl-CoA hydroxylase and gentisyl-CoA thioesterase, respectively) catalyzing the conversion of PHB to GA via a route involving CoA thioester formation, hydroxylation concomitant with a 1, 2-shift of the acetyl CoA moiety and thioester hydrolysis. The shift of the carboxyl group was established rigorously by stable isotopic experiments with heterologously expressed phgABC, converting 2, 3, 5, 6-tetradeutero-PHB and [carboxyl-13 C]-PHB to 3, 4, 6-trideutero-GA and [carboxyl-13 C]-GA respectively. This is distinct from the NIH shifts of hydrogen and aceto substituents, where a single oxygenase catalyzes the reaction without the involvement of a thioester. The discovery of this three-step strategy for carboxyl group migration reveals a novel role of the CoA thioester in biochemistry and also illustrates the diversity and complexity of microbial catabolism in the carbon cycle.© 2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


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