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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Haematococcus lacustris: the makings of a giant-sized chloroplast genome.

Recent work on the chlamydomonadalean green alga Haematococcus lacustris uncovered the largest plastid genome on record: a whopping 1.35 Mb with >90 % non-coding DNA. A 500-word description of this genome was published in the journal Genome Announcements. But such a short report for such a large genome leaves many unanswered questions. For instance, the H. lacustris plastome was found to encode only 12 tRNAs, less than half that of a typical plastome, it appears to have a non-standard genetic code, and is one of only a few known plastid DNAs (ptDNAs), out of thousands of available sequences, not biased…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Comparative analysis of blaKPC-2- and rmtB-carrying IncFII-family pKPC-LK30/pHN7A8 hybrid plasmids from Klebsiella pneumoniae CG258 strains disseminated among multiple Chinese hospitals.

We recently reported the complete sequence of a blaKPC-2- and rmtB-carrying IncFII-family plasmid p675920-1 with the pKPC-LK30/pHN7A8 hybrid structure. Comparative genomics of additional sequenced plasmids with similar hybrid structures and their prevalence in blaKPC-carrying Klebsiella pneumoniae strains from China were investigated in this follow-up study.A total of 51 blaKPC-carrying K. pneumoniae strains were isolated from 2012 to 2016 from five Chinese hospitals and genotyped by multilocus sequence typing. The blaKPC-carrying plasmids from four representative strains were sequenced and compared with p675920-1 and pCT-KPC. Plasmid transfer, carbapenemase activity determination, and bacterial antimicrobial susceptibility test were performed to characterize resistance phenotypes mediated…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Repeat elements organise 3D genome structure and mediate transcription in the filamentous fungus Epichloë festucae.

Structural features of genomes, including the three-dimensional arrangement of DNA in the nucleus, are increasingly seen as key contributors to the regulation of gene expression. However, studies on how genome structure and nuclear organisation influence transcription have so far been limited to a handful of model species. This narrow focus limits our ability to draw general conclusions about the ways in which three-dimensional structures are encoded, and to integrate information from three-dimensional data to address a broader gamut of biological questions. Here, we generate a complete and gapless genome sequence for the filamentous fungus, Epichloë festucae. We use Hi-C data…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Computational tools to unmask transposable elements.

A substantial proportion of the genome of many species is derived from transposable elements (TEs). Moreover, through various self-copying mechanisms, TEs continue to proliferate in the genomes of most species. TEs have contributed numerous regulatory, transcript and protein innovations and have also been linked to disease. However, notwithstanding their demonstrated impact, many genomic studies still exclude them because their repetitive nature results in various analytical complexities. Fortunately, a growing array of methods and software tools are being developed to cater for them. This Review presents a summary of computational resources for TEs and highlights some of the challenges and remaining…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Plasmid and chromosomal integration of four novel blaIMP-carrying transposons from Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella pneumoniae and an Enterobacter sp.

To provide detailed genetic characterization of four novel blaIMP-carrying transposons from Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella pneumoniae and an Enterobacter sp.P. aeruginosa 60512, K. pneumoniae 447, P. aeruginosa 12939 and Enterobacter sp. A1137 were subjected to genome sequencing. The complete nucleotide sequences of two plasmids (p60512-IMP from the 60512 isolate and p447-IMP from the 447 isolate) and two chromosomes (the 12939 and A1137 isolates) were determined, then a genomic comparison of p60512-IMP, p447-IMP and four novel blaIMP-carrying transposons (Tn6394, Tn6375, Tn6411 and Tn6397) with related sequences was performed. Transferability of the blaIMP gene and bacterial antimicrobial susceptibility were tested.Tn6394 and Tn6375 were…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Phenazines in plant-beneficial Pseudomonas spp.: biosynthesis, regulation, function and genomics.

Plant-beneficial phenazine-producing Pseudomonas spp. are proficient biocontrol agents of soil-dwelling plant pathogens. Phenazines are redox-active molecules that display broad-spectrum antibiotic activity toward many fungal, bacterial and oomycete plant pathogens. Phenazine compounds also play a role in the persistence and survival of Pseudomonas spp. in the rhizosphere. This mini-review focuses on plant-beneficial phenazine-producing Pseudomonas spp. from the P. fluorescens species complex, which includes numerous well-known phenazine-producing strains of biocontrol interest. In this review the current knowledge on phenazine biosynthesis and regulation, the role played by phenazines in biocontrol and rhizosphere colonization, as well as exciting new advances in the genomics of…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Phenotypic and genomic comparison of Photorhabdus luminescens subsp. laumondii TT01 and a widely used rifampicin-resistant Photorhabdus luminescens laboratory strain.

Photorhabdus luminescens is an enteric bacterium, which lives in mutualistic association with soil nematodes and is highly pathogenic for a broad spectrum of insects. A complete genome sequence for the type strain P. luminescens subsp. laumondii TT01, which was originally isolated in Trinidad and Tobago, has been described earlier. Subsequently, a rifampicin resistant P. luminescens strain has been generated with superior possibilities for experimental characterization. This strain, which is widely used in research, was described as a spontaneous rifampicin resistant mutant of TT01 and is known as TT01-RifR.Unexpectedly, upon phenotypic comparison between the rifampicin resistant strain and its presumed parent…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Correcting palindromes in long reads after whole-genome amplification.

Next-generation sequencing requires sufficient DNA to be available. If limited, whole-genome amplification is applied to generate additional amounts of DNA. Such amplification often results in many chimeric DNA fragments, in particular artificial palindromic sequences, which limit the usefulness of long sequencing reads.Here, we present Pacasus, a tool for correcting such errors. Two datasets show that it markedly improves read mapping and de novo assembly, yielding results similar to these that would be obtained with non-amplified DNA.With Pacasus long-read technologies become available for sequencing targets with very small amounts of DNA, such as single cells or even single chromosomes.

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

The enterococcus cassette chromosome, a genomic variation enabler in enterococci.

Enterococcus faecium has a highly variable genome prone to recombination and horizontal gene transfer. Here, we have identified a novel genetic island with an insertion locus and mobilization genes similar to those of staphylococcus cassette chromosome elements SCCmec This novel element termed the enterococcus cassette chromosome (ECC) element was located in the 3′ region of rlmH and encoded large serine recombinases ccrAB similar to SCCmec Horizontal transfer of an ECC element termed ECC::cat containing a knock-in cat chloramphenicol resistance determinant occurred in the presence of a conjugative reppLG1 plasmid. We determined the ECC::cat insertion site in the 3′ region of…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

3D molecular cytology of Hop (Humulus lupulus) meiotic chromosomes reveals non-disomic pairing and segregation, aneuploidy, and genomic structural variation.

Hop (Humulus lupulus L.) is an important crop worldwide, known as the main flavoring ingredient in beer. The diversifying brewing industry demands variation in flavors, superior process properties, and sustainable agronomics, which are the focus of advanced molecular breeding efforts in hops. Hop breeders have been limited in their ability to create strains with desirable traits, however, because of the unusual and unpredictable inheritance patterns and associated non-Mendelian genetic marker segregation. Cytogenetic analysis of meiotic chromosome behavior has also revealed conspicuous and prevalent occurrences of multiple, atypical, non-disomic chromosome complexes, including those involving autosomes in late prophase. To explore the…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Genome sequences of two diploid wild relatives of cultivated sweetpotato reveal targets for genetic improvement

Sweetpotato [Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam.] is a globally important staple food crop, especially for sub-Saharan Africa. Agronomic improvement of sweetpotato has lagged behind other major food crops due to a lack of genomic and genetic resources and inherent challenges in breeding a heterozygous, clonally propagated polyploid. Here, we report the genome sequences of its two diploid relatives, I. trifida and I. triloba, and show that these high-quality genome assemblies are robust references for hexaploid sweetpotato. Comparative and phylogenetic analyses reveal insights into the ancient whole-genome triplication history of Ipomoea and evolutionary relationships within the Batatas complex. Using resequencing data from…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Enterobacter cloacae Complex Sequence Type 171 Isolates Expressing KPC-4 Carbapenemase Recovered from Canine Patients in Ohio.

Companion animals are likely relevant in the transmission of antimicrobial-resistant bacteria. Enterobacter xiangfangensis sequence type 171 (ST171), a clone that has been implicated in clusters of infections in humans, was isolated from two dogs with clinical disease in Ohio. The canine isolates contained IncHI2 plasmids encoding blaKPC-4 Whole-genome sequencing was used to put the canine isolates in phylogenetic context with available human ST171 sequences, as well as to characterize their blaKPC-4 plasmids. Copyright © 2018 American Society for Microbiology.

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Whole-genome landscape of Medicago truncatula symbiotic genes.

Advances in deciphering the functional architecture of eukaryotic genomes have been facilitated by recent breakthroughs in sequencing technologies, enabling a more comprehensive representation of genes and repeat elements in genome sequence assemblies, as well as more sensitive and tissue-specific analyses of gene expression. Here we show that PacBio sequencing has led to a substantially improved genome assembly of Medicago truncatula A17, a legume model species notable for endosymbiosis studies1, and has enabled the identification of genome rearrangements between genotypes at a near-base-pair resolution. Annotation of the new M. truncatula genome sequence has allowed for a thorough analysis of transposable elements…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

N6-methyladenine DNA methylation in Japonica and Indica rice genomes and its association with gene expression, plant development, and stress responses.

N6-Methyladenine (6mA) DNA methylation has recently been implicated as a potential new epigenetic marker in eukaryotes, including the dicot model Arabidopsis thaliana. However, the conservation and divergence of 6mA distribution patterns and functions in plants remain elusive. Here we report high-quality 6mA methylomes at single-nucleotide resolution in rice based on substantially improved genome sequences of two rice cultivars, Nipponbare (Nip; Japonica) and 93-11 (Indica). Analysis of 6mA genomic distribution and its association with transcription suggest that 6mA distribution and function is rather conserved between rice and Arabidopsis. We found that 6mA levels are positively correlated with the expression of key…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Transcriptional landscape of a blaKPC-2 plasmid and response to imipenem exposure in Escherichia coli TOP10.

The diffusion of KPC-2 carbapenemase is closely related to the spread of Klebsiella pneumoniae of the clonal-group 258 and linked to IncFIIK plasmids. Little is known about the biology of multi-drug resistant plasmids and the reasons of their successful dissemination. Using E. coli TOP10 strain harboring a multi-replicon IncFIIK-IncFIB blaKPC-2-gene carrying plasmid pBIC1a from K. pneumoniae ST-258 clinical isolate BIC-1, we aimed to identify basal gene expression and the effects of imipenem exposure using whole transcriptome approach by RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq). Independently of the antibiotic pressure, most of the plasmid-backbone genes were expressed at low levels. The most expressed pBIC1a…

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