October 23, 2019  |  

High resolution profiling of coral-associated bacterial communities using full-length 16S rRNA sequence data from PacBio SMRT sequencing system.

Coral reefs are a complex ecosystem consisting of coral animals and a vast array of associated symbionts including the dinoflagellate Symbiodinium, fungi, viruses and bacteria. Several studies have highlighted the importance of coral-associated bacteria and their fundamental roles in fitness and survival of the host animal. The scleractinian coral Porites lutea is one of the dominant reef-builders in the Indo-West Pacific. Currently, very little is known about the composition and structure of bacterial communities across P. lutea reefs. The purpose of this study is twofold: to demonstrate the advantages of using PacBio circular consensus sequencing technology in microbial community studies and to investigate the diversity and structure of P. lutea-associated microbiome in the Indo-Pacific. This is the first metagenomic study of marine environmental samples that utilises the PacBio sequencing system to capture full-length 16S rRNA sequences. We observed geographically distinct coral-associated microbial profiles between samples from the Gulf of Thailand and Andaman Sea. Despite the geographical and environmental impacts on the coral-host interactions, we identified a conserved community of bacteria that were present consistently across diverse reef habitats. Finally, we demonstrated the superior performance of full-length 16S rRNA sequences in resolving taxonomic uncertainty of coral associates at the species level.


October 23, 2019  |  

The genome of common long-arm octopus Octopus minor.

The common long-arm octopus (Octopus minor) is found in mudflats of subtidal zones and faces numerous environmental challenges. The ability to adapt its morphology and behavioral repertoire to diverse environmental conditions makes the species a promising model for understanding genomic adaptation and evolution in cephalopods.The final genome assembly of O. minor is 5.09 Gb, with a contig N50 size of 197 kb and longest size of 3.027 Mb, from a total of 419 Gb raw reads generated using the Pacific Biosciences RS II platform. We identified 30,010 genes; 44.43% of the genome is composed of repeat elements. The genome-wide phylogenetic tree indicated the divergence time between O. minor and Octopus bimaculoides was estimated to be 43 million years ago based on single-copy orthologous genes. In total, 178 gene families are expanded in O. minor in the 14 bilaterian species.We found that the O. minor genome was larger than that of closely related O. bimaculoides, and this difference could be explained by enlarged introns and recently diversified transposable elements. The high-quality O. minor genome assembly provides a valuable resource for understanding octopus genome evolution and the molecular basis of adaptations to mudflats.


October 23, 2019  |  

Chromosomal-level assembly of yellow catfish genome using third-generation DNA sequencing and Hi-C analysis.

The yellow catfish, Pelteobagrus fulvidraco, belonging to the Siluriformes order, is an economically important freshwater aquaculture fish species in Asia, especially in Southern China. The aquaculture industry has recently been facing tremendous challenges in germplasm degeneration and poor disease resistance. As the yellow catfish exhibits notable sex dimorphism in growth, with adult males about two- to three-fold bigger than females, the way in which the aquaculture industry takes advantage of such sex dimorphism is another challenge. To address these issues, a high-quality reference genome of the yellow catfish would be a very useful resource.To construct a high-quality reference genome for the yellow catfish, we generated 51.2 Gb short reads and 38.9 Gb long reads using Illumina and Pacific Biosciences (PacBio) sequencing platforms, respectively. The sequencing data were assembled into a 732.8 Mb genome assembly with a contig N50 length of 1.1 Mb. Additionally, we applied Hi-C technology to identify contacts among contigs, which were then used to assemble contigs into scaffolds, resulting in a genome assembly with 26 chromosomes and a scaffold N50 length of 25.8 Mb. Using 24,552 protein-coding genes annotated in the yellow catfish genome, the phylogenetic relationships of the yellow catfish with other teleosts showed that yellow catfish separated from the common ancestor of channel catfish ~81.9 million years ago. We identified 1,717 gene families to be expanded in the yellow catfish, and those gene families are mainly enriched in the immune system, signal transduction, glycosphingolipid biosynthesis, and fatty acid biosynthesis.Taking advantage of Illumina, PacBio, and Hi-C technologies, we constructed the first high-quality chromosome-level genome assembly for the yellow catfish P. fulvidraco. The genomic resources generated in this work not only offer a valuable reference genome for functional genomics studies of yellow catfish to decipher the economic traits and sex determination but also provide important chromosome information for genome comparisons in the wider evolutionary research community.


September 22, 2019  |  

Membrane attack complex-associated molecules from redlip mullet (Liza haematocheila): Molecular characterization and transcriptional evidence of C6, C7, C8ß, and C9 in innate immunity.

The redlip mullet (Liza haematocheila) is one of the most economically important fish in Korea and other East Asian countries; it is susceptible to infections by pathogens such as Lactococcus garvieae, Argulus spp., Trichodina spp., and Vibrio spp. Learning about the mechanisms of the complement system of the innate immunity of redlip mullet is important for efforts towards eradicating pathogens. Here, we report a comprehensive study of the terminal complement complex (TCC) components that form the membrane attack complex (MAC) through in-silico characterization and comparative spatial and temporal expression profiling. Five conserved domains (TSP1, LDLa, MACPF, CCP, and FIMAC) were detected in the TCC components, but the CCP and FIMAC domains were absent in MuC8ß and MuC9. Expression analysis of four TCC genes from healthy redlip mullets showed the highest expression levels in the liver, whereas limited expression was observed in other tissues; immune-induced expression in the head kidney and spleen revealed significant responses against Lactococcus garvieae and poly I:C injection, suggesting their involvement in MAC formation in response to harmful pathogenic infections. Furthermore, the response to poly I:C may suggest the role of TCC components in the breakdown of the membrane of enveloped viruses. These findings may help to elucidate the mechanisms behind the complement system of the teleosts innate immunity. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


September 22, 2019  |  

Two phospholipid scramblase 1-related proteins (PLSCR1like-a & -b) from Liza haematocheila: Molecular and transcriptional features and expression analysis after immune stimulation.

Phospholipid scramblases (PLSCRs) are a family of transmembrane proteins known to be responsible for Ca2+-mediated bidirectional phospholipid translocation in the plasma membrane. Apart from the scrambling activity of PLSCRs, recent studies revealed their diverse other roles, including antiviral defense, tumorigenesis, protein-DNA interactions, apoptosis regulation, and cell activation. Nonetheless, the biological and transcriptional functions of PLSCRs in fish have not been discovered to date. Therefore, in this study, two new members related to the PLSCR1 family were identified in the red lip mullet (Liza haematocheila) as MuPLSCR1like-a and MuPLSCR1like-b, and their characteristics were studied at molecular and transcriptional levels. Sequence analysis revealed that MuPLSCR1like-a and MuPLSCR1like-b are composed of 245 and 228 amino acid residues (aa) with the predicted molecular weights of 27.82 and 25.74?kDa, respectively. A constructed phylogenetic tree showed that MuPLSCR1like-a and MuPLSCR1like-b are clustered together with other known PLSCR1 and -2 orthologues, thus pointing to the relatedness to both PLSCR1 and PLSCR2 families. Two-dimensional (2D) and 3D graphical representations illustrated the well-known 12-stranded ß-barrel structure of MuPLSCR1like-a and MuPLSCR1like-b with transmembrane orientation toward the phospholipid bilayer. In analysis of tissue-specific expression, the highest expression of MuPLSCR1like-a was observed in the intestine, whereas MuPLSCR1like-b was highly expressed in the brain, indicating isoform specificity. Of note, we found that the transcription of MuPLSCR1like-a and MuPLSCR1like-b was significantly upregulated when the fish were stimulated with poly(I:C), suggesting that such immune responses target viral infections. Overall, this study provides the first experimental insight into the characteristics and immune-system relevance of PLSCR1-related genes in red lip mullets. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


September 22, 2019  |  

16S rRNA long-read sequencing of the granulation tissue from nonsmokers and smokers-severe chronic periodontitis patients

Smoking has been associated with increased risk of periodontitis. The aim of the present study was to compare the periodontal disease severity among smokers and nonsmokers which may help in better understanding of predisposition to this chronic inflammation mediated diseases. We selected deep-seated infected granulation tissue removed during periodontal flap surgery procedures for identification and differential abundance of residential bacterial species among smokers and nonsmokers through long-read sequencing technology targeting full-length 16S rRNA gene. A total of 8 phyla were identified among which Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes were most dominating. Differential abundance analysis of OTUs through PICRUST showed significant (p>0.05) abundance of Phyla-Fusobacteria (Streptobacillus moniliformis); Phyla-Firmicutes (Streptococcus equi), and Phyla Proteobacteria (Enhydrobacter aerosaccus) in nonsmokers compared to smokers. The differential abundance of oral metagenomes in smokers showed significant enrichment of host genes modulating pathways involving primary immunodeficiency, citrate cycle, streptomycin biosynthesis, vitamin B6 metabolism, butanoate metabolism, glycine, serine, and threonine metabolism pathways. While thiamine metabolism, amino acid metabolism, homologous recombination, epithelial cell signaling, aminoacyl-tRNA biosynthesis, phosphonate/phosphinate metabolism, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon degradation, synthesis and degradation of ketone bodies, translation factors, Ascorbate and aldarate metabolism, and DNA replication pathways were significantly enriched in nonsmokers, modulation of these pathways in oral cavities due to differential enrichment of metagenomes in smokers may lead to an increased susceptibility to infections and/or higher formation of DNA adducts, which may increase the risk of carcinogenesis.


September 22, 2019  |  

Characterization of four C1q/TNF-related proteins (CTRPs) from red-lip mullet (Liza haematocheila) and their transcriptional modulation in response to bacterial and pathogen-associated molecular pattern stimuli.

The structural and evolutionary linkage between tumor necrosis factor (TNF) and the globular C1q (gC1q) domain defines the C1q and TNF-related proteins (CTRPs), which are involved in diverse functions such as immune defense, inflammation, apoptosis, autoimmunity, and cell differentiation. In this study, red-lip mullet (Liza haematocheila) CTRP4-like (MuCTRP4-like), CTRP5 (MuCTRP5), CTRP6 (MuCTRP6), and CTRP7 (MuCTRP7) were identified from the red-lip mullet transcriptome database and molecularly characterized. According to in silico analysis, coding sequences of MuCTRP4-like, MuCTRP5, MuCTRP6, and MuCTRP7 consisted of 1128, 753, 729, and 888 bp open reading frames (ORF), respectively and encoded 375, 250, 242, and 295 amino acids, respectively. All CTRPs possessed a putative C1q domain. Additionally, MuCTRP5, MuCTRP6, and MuCTRP7 consisted of a collagen region. Phylogenetic analysis exemplified that MuCTRPs were distinctly clustered with the respective CTRP orthologs. Tissue-specific expression analysis demonstrated that MuCTRP4-like was mostly expressed in the blood and intestine. Moreover, MuCTRP6 was highly expressed in the blood, whereas MuCTRP5 and MuCTRP7 were predominantly expressed in the muscle and stomach, respectively. According to the temporal expression in blood, all MuCTRPs exhibited significant modulations in response to polyinosinic:polycytidylic acid (poly I:C) and Lactococcus garvieae (L. garvieae). MuCTRP4-like, MuCTRP5, and MuCTRP6 showed significant upregulation in response to lipopolysaccharides (LPS). The results of this study suggest the potential involvement of Mullet CTRPs in post-immune responses. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.


September 22, 2019  |  

Identification and characterization of a carboxypeptidase N1 from red lip mullet (Liza haematocheila); revealing its immune relevance.

Complement system orchestrates the innate and adaptive immunity via the activation, recruitment, and regulation of immune molecules to destroy pathogens. However, regulation of the complement is essential to avoid injuries to the autologous tissues. The present study unveils the characteristic features of an important complement component, anaphylatoxin inactivator from red lip mullet at its molecular and functional level. Mullet carboxypeptidase N1 (MuCPN1) cDNA sequence possessed an open reading frame of 1347 bp, which encoded a protein of 449 amino acids with a predicted molecular weight of 51?kDa. In silico analysis discovered two domains of PM14-Zn carboxypeptidase and a C-terminal domain of M14 N/E carboxypeptidase, two zinc-binding signature motifs, and an N-glycosylation site in the MuCPN1 sequence. Homology analysis revealed that most of the residues in the sequence are conserved among the other selected homologs. Phylogeny analysis showed that MuCPN1 closely cladded with the Maylandia zebra CPN1 and clustered together with the teleostean counterparts. A challenge experiment showed modulated expression of MuCPN1 upon polyinosinic:polycytidylic acid and Lactococcus garviae in head kidney, spleen, gill, and liver tissues. The highest upregulation of MuCPN1 was observed 24?h post infection against poly I:C in each tissue. Moreover, the highest relative expressions upon L. garviae challenge were observed at 24?h post infection in head kidney tissue and 48?h post infection in spleen, gill, and liver tissues. MuCPN1 transfected cells triggered a 2.2-fold increase of nitric oxide (NO) production upon LPS stimulation compared to the un-transfected controls suggesting that MuCPN1 is an active protease which releases arginine from complement C3a, C4a, and C5a. These results have driven certain way towards enhancing the understanding of immune role of MuCPN1 in the complement defense mechanism of red lip mullet. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


September 22, 2019  |  

Capturing natural product biosynthetic pathways from uncultivated symbiotic bacteria of marine sponges through metagenome mining: a mini-review

Symbiotic bacteria associated with marine sponges have frequently been proposed as the true producer of many bioactive natural products with potent anticancer activities. However, the majority of these complex symbiotic bacteria cannot be cultivated under laboratory conditions, hampering efforts to access and develop their potent compounds for therapeutic applications. Metagenome mining is a powerful cultivation-independent tool that can be used to search for new natural product biosynthetic pathways from highly complex bacterial consortia. Some notable examples of natural products, in which their biosynthetic pathways have been cloned by metagenome mining are onnamide A, psymberin, polytheonamides, calyculin, and misakinolide A. Subsequent expression of the pathways in easily culturable bacteria, such as Escherichia coli, could lead to the sustainable production of rare promising natural products. This review discusses principles of metagenome mining developed to gain access to natural product biosynthetic pathways from uncultured symbiotic bacteria of marine sponges. This includes detecting biosynthetic genes in sponge metagenome, creating large metagenomic library, rapid screening of metagenomic library, and clone sequencing. For many natural products made by modular polyketide synthases (PKSs) and hybrids with non-ribosomal peptide synthetases (NRPSs), their biosynthetic pathways as well as structures of final products can be predicted with high accuracy through bioinformatic analysis and sometimes combined with functional proof. Further metagenome sequencing integrated with single-cell analysis and chemical studies could provide insights into the remarkable biosynthetic capacity of uncultivated bacterial symbionts, thereby facilitating the discovery and sustainable production of a wide diversity of sponge-derived complex compounds.


September 22, 2019  |  

Genomic and metabolic diversity of Marine Group I Thaumarchaeota in the mesopelagic of two subtropical gyres.

Marine Group I (MGI) Thaumarchaeota are one of the most abundant and cosmopolitan chemoautotrophs within the global dark ocean. To date, no representatives of this archaeal group retrieved from the dark ocean have been successfully cultured. We used single cell genomics to investigate the genomic and metabolic diversity of thaumarchaea within the mesopelagic of the subtropical North Pacific and South Atlantic Ocean. Phylogenetic and metagenomic recruitment analysis revealed that MGI single amplified genomes (SAGs) are genetically and biogeographically distinct from existing thaumarchaea cultures obtained from surface waters. Confirming prior studies, we found genes encoding proteins for aerobic ammonia oxidation and the hydrolysis of urea, which may be used for energy production, as well as genes involved in 3-hydroxypropionate/4-hydroxybutyrate and oxidative tricarboxylic acid pathways. A large proportion of protein sequences identified in MGI SAGs were absent in the marine cultures Cenarchaeum symbiosum and Nitrosopumilus maritimus, thus expanding the predicted protein space for this archaeal group. Identifiable genes located on genomic islands with low metagenome recruitment capacity were enriched in cellular defense functions, likely in response to viral infections or grazing. We show that MGI Thaumarchaeota in the dark ocean may have more flexibility in potential energy sources and adaptations to biotic interactions than the existing, surface-ocean cultures.


September 22, 2019  |  

Analysis of aquaporins from the euryhaline barnacle Balanus improvisus reveals differential expression in response to changes in salinity.

Barnacles are sessile macro-invertebrates, found along rocky shores in coastal areas worldwide. The euryhaline bay barnacle Balanus improvisus (Darwin, 1854) (= Amphibalanus improvisus) can tolerate a wide range of salinities, but the molecular mechanisms underlying the osmoregulatory capacity of this truly brackish species are not well understood. Aquaporins are pore-forming integral membrane proteins that facilitate transport of water, small solutes and ions through cellular membranes, and that have been shown to be important for osmoregulation in many organisms. The knowledge of the function of aquaporins in crustaceans is, however, limited and nothing is known about them in barnacles. We here present the repertoire of aquaporins from a thecostracan crustacean, the barnacle B. improvisus, based on genome and transcriptome sequencing. Our analyses reveal that B. improvisus contains eight genes for aquaporins. Phylogenetic analysis showed that they represented members of the classical water aquaporins (Aqp1, Aqp2), the aquaglyceroporins (Glp1, Glp2), the unorthodox aquaporin (Aqp12) and the arthropod-specific big brain aquaporin (Bib). Interestingly, we also found two big brain-like proteins (BibL1 and BibL2) constituting a new group of aquaporins not yet described in arthropods. In addition, we found that the two water-specific aquaporins were expressed as C-terminal splice variants. Heterologous expression of some of the aquaporins followed by functional characterization showed that Aqp1 transported water and Glp2 water and glycerol, agreeing with the predictions of substrate specificity based on 3D modeling and phylogeny. To investigate a possible role for the B. improvisus aquaporins in osmoregulation, mRNA expression changes in adult barnacles were analysed after long-term acclimation to different salinities. The most pronounced expression difference was seen for AQP1 with a substantial (>100-fold) decrease in the mantle tissue in low salinity (3 PSU) compared to high salinity (33 PSU). Our study provides a base for future mechanistic studies on the role of aquaporins in osmoregulation.


September 22, 2019  |  

Effects of low crude oil chronic exposure on the northern krill (Meganyctiphanes norvegica)

Chronic oil pollution related to gas and oil drilling activities is increasing in the sea due to the rising offshore petroleum industry activity. Among marine organisms, zooplankton play a crucial role in the marine ecosystem and therefore understanding the effects of crude oil chronic exposure on zooplankton is needed to determine the impact of oil in marine environments. The present study reports on the effect of crude oil on adult northern krill, Meganyctiphanes norvegica, collected during three seasons. Their sensitivity to oil was examined with oil concentration of 0.01 versus 0.1 mg oil L- 1 and photo-modified oil in flowing seawater maintained in the dark for 2 weeks at in situ temperature. Oil (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, PAHs) entered the krill (on average, 350 and 4400 µg·kg- 1 wet weight in low and medium oil treatments respectively) and a larger fraction of the krill exhibited digestive gland pathologies (enhanced apoptosis and pathology of digestive tubules) in oil treatments (27–80%) compared to a significantly lower fraction (7–13%) in treatments that received no oil. However, 2-week oil exposure at these concentrations did not significantly decrease survivorship or impair basic functioning such as feeding and respiration rates. Similarly, there were only limited changes in the transcription of 7 selected genes from head tissue. Additionally, although there was significant seasonal variation in krill total lipid content and fatty acid composition, there was no treatment effect on both these parameters, which suggests limited oxidative stress under experimental conditions. Furthermore, there was no significant treatment effect on two direct measures of oxidative stress (MDA: malondialdehyde and AOPP: advanced oxidation protein products) in any of the seasons. Nevertheless, histology clearly revealed enhanced digestive gland pathologies in krill even at low concentrations. Although krill with such pathologies continue to survive, their accumulation of PAHs may be transferred up the food chain, impacting their predators and the wider ecosystem.


September 22, 2019  |  

Full-length transcriptome of Misgurnus anguillicaudatus provides insights into evolution of genus Misgurnus.

Reconstruction and annotation of transcripts, particularly for a species without reference genome, plays a critical role in gene discovery, investigation of genomic signatures, and genome annotation in the pre-genomic era. This study generated 33,330 full-length transcripts of diploid M. anguillicaudatus using PacBio SMRT Sequencing. A total of 6,918 gene families were identified with two or more isoforms, and 26,683 complete ORFs with an average length of 1,497?bp were detected. Totally, 1,208 high-confidence lncRNAs were identified, and most of these appeared to be precursor transcripts of miRNAs or snoRNAs. Phylogenetic tree of the Misgurnus species was inferred based on the 1,905 single copy orthologous genes. The tetraploid and diploid M. anguillicaudatus grouped into a clade, and M. bipartitus showed a closer relationship with the M. anguillicaudatus. The overall evolutionary rates of tetraploid M. anguillicaudatus were significantly higher than those of other Misgurnus species. Meanwhile, 28 positively selected genes were identified in M. anguillicaudatus clade. These positively selected genes may play critical roles in the adaptation to various habitat environments for M. anguillicaudatus. This study could facilitate further exploration of the genomic signatures of M. anguillicaudatus and provide potential insights into unveiling the evolutionary history of tetraploid loach.


September 22, 2019  |  

Interpreting microbial biosynthesis in the genomic age: Biological and practical considerations.

Genome mining has become an increasingly powerful, scalable, and economically accessible tool for the study of natural product biosynthesis and drug discovery. However, there remain important biological and practical problems that can complicate or obscure biosynthetic analysis in genomic and metagenomic sequencing projects. Here, we focus on limitations of available technology as well as computational and experimental strategies to overcome them. We review the unique challenges and approaches in the study of symbiotic and uncultured systems, as well as those associated with biosynthetic gene cluster (BGC) assembly and product prediction. Finally, to explore sequencing parameters that affect the recovery and contiguity of large and repetitive BGCs assembled de novo, we simulate Illumina and PacBio sequencing of the Salinispora tropica genome focusing on assembly of the salinilactam (slm) BGC.


September 22, 2019  |  

A manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD) from red lip mullet, Liza haematocheila: Evaluation of molecular structure, immune response, and antioxidant function.

Manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD) is a nuclear-encoded antioxidant metalloenzyme. The main function of this enzyme is to dismutase the toxic superoxide anion (O2-) into less toxic hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and oxygen (O2). Structural analysis of mullet MnSOD (MuMnSOD) was performed using different bioinformatics tools. Pairwise alignment revealed that the protein sequence matched to that derived from Larimichthys crocea with a 95.2% sequence identity. Phylogenetic tree analysis showed that the MuMnSOD was included in the category of teleosts. Multiple sequence alignment showed that a SOD Fe-N domain, SOD Fe-C domain, and Mn/Fe SOD signature were highly conserved among the other examined MnSOD orthologs. Quantitative real-time PCR showed that the highest MuMnSOD mRNA expression level was in blood cells. The highest expression level of MuMnSOD was observed in response to treatment with both Lactococcus garvieae and lipopolysaccharide (LPS) at 6?h post treatment in the head kidney and blood. Potential ROS-scavenging ability of the purified recombinant protein (rMuMnSOD) was examined by the xanthine oxidase assay (XOD assay). The optimum temperature and pH for XOD activity were found to be 25?°C and pH 7, respectively. Relative XOD activity was significantly increased with the dose of rMuMnSOD, revealing its dose dependency. Activity of rMuMnSOD was inhibited by potassium cyanide (KCN) and N-N’-diethyl-dithiocarbamate (DDC). Moreover, expression of MuMnSOD resulted in considerable growth retardation of both gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria. Results of the current study suggest that MuMnSOD acts as an antioxidant enzyme and participates in the immune response in mullet. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Talk with an expert

If you have a question, need to check the status of an order, or are interested in purchasing an instrument, we're here to help.