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Friday, July 19, 2019

Characterisation of MHC class I genes in the koala.

Koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) populations are on the decline across the majority of Australia’s mainland. Two major diseases threatening the long-term survival of affected koala populations are caused by obligate intracellular pathogens: Chlamydia and koala retrovirus (KoRV). To improve our understanding of the koala immune system, we characterised their major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I genes, which are centrally involved in presenting foreign peptides derived from intracellular pathogens to cytotoxic T cells. A total of 11 class I genes were identified in the koala genome. Three genes, Phci-UA, UB and UC, showed relatively high genetic variability and were expressed in all…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

De novo PacBio long-read and phased avian genome assemblies correct and add to reference genes generated with intermediate and short reads.

Reference-quality genomes are expected to provide a resource for studying gene structure, function, and evolution. However, often genes of interest are not completely or accurately assembled, leading to unknown errors in analyses or additional cloning efforts for the correct sequences. A promising solution is long-read sequencing. Here we tested PacBio-based long-read sequencing and diploid assembly for potential improvements to the Sanger-based intermediate-read zebra finch reference and Illumina-based short-read Anna’s hummingbird reference, 2 vocal learning avian species widely studied in neuroscience and genomics. With DNA of the same individuals used to generate the reference genomes, we generated diploid assemblies with the…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

De novo assembly of genomes from long sequence reads reveals uncharted territories of Propionibacterium freudenreichii.

Propionibacterium freudenreichii is an industrially important bacterium granted the Generally Recognized as Safe (the GRAS) status, due to its long safe use in food bioprocesses. Despite the recognized role in the food industry and in the production of vitamin B12, as well as its documented health-promoting potential, P. freudenreichii remained poorly characterised at the genomic level. At present, only three complete genome sequences are available for the species.We used the PacBio RS II sequencing platform to generate complete genomes of 20 P. freudenreichii strains and compared them in detail. Comparative analyses revealed both sequence conservation and genome organisational diversity among…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

Single-molecule sequencing reveals the chromosome-scale genomic architecture of the nematode model organism Pristionchus pacificus.

The nematode Pristionchus pacificus is an established model for integrative evolutionary biology and comparative studies with Caenorhabditis elegans. While an existing genome draft facilitated the identification of several genes controlling various developmental processes, its high degree of fragmentation complicated virtually all genomic analyses. Here, we present a de novo genome assembly from single-molecule, long-read sequencing data consisting of 135 P. pacificus contigs. When combined with a genetic linkage map, 99% of the assembly could be ordered and oriented into six chromosomes. This allowed us to robustly characterize chromosomal patterns of gene density, repeat content, nucleotide diversity, linkage disequilibrium, and macrosynteny in…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

Genomic analysis of hospital plumbing reveals diverse reservoir of bacterial plasmids conferring carbapenem resistance.

The hospital environment is a potential reservoir of bacteria with plasmids conferring carbapenem resistance. Our Hospital Epidemiology Service routinely performs extensive sampling of high-touch surfaces, sinks, and other locations in the hospital. Over a 2-year period, additional sampling was conducted at a broader range of locations, including housekeeping closets, wastewater from hospital internal pipes, and external manholes. We compared these data with previously collected information from 5 years of patient clinical and surveillance isolates. Whole-genome sequencing and analysis of 108 isolates provided comprehensive characterization ofblaKPC/blaNDM-positive isolates, enabling an in-depth genetic comparison. Strikingly, despite a very low prevalence of patient infections…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

The genome of Schmidtea mediterranea and the evolution of core cellular mechanisms.

The planarian Schmidtea mediterranea is an important model for stem cell research and regeneration, but adequate genome resources for this species have been lacking. Here we report a highly contiguous genome assembly of S. mediterranea, using long-read sequencing and a de novo assembler (MARVEL) enhanced for low-complexity reads. The S. mediterranea genome is highly polymorphic and repetitive, and harbours a novel class of giant retroelements. Furthermore, the genome assembly lacks a number of highly conserved genes, including critical components of the mitotic spindle assembly checkpoint, but planarians maintain checkpoint function. Our genome assembly provides a key model system resource that…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

The complete and fully assembled genome sequence of Aeromonas salmonicida subsp. pectinolytica and its comparative analysis with other Aeromonas species: investigation of the mobilome in environmental and pathogenic strains.

Due to the predominant usage of short-read sequencing to date, most bacterial genome sequences reported in the last years remain at the draft level. This precludes certain types of analyses, such as the in-depth analysis of genome plasticity.Here we report the finalized genome sequence of the environmental strain Aeromonas salmonicida subsp. pectinolytica 34mel, for which only a draft genome with 253 contigs is currently available. Successful completion of the transposon-rich genome critically depended on the PacBio long read sequencing technology. Using finalized genome sequences of A. salmonicida subsp. pectinolytica and other Aeromonads, we report the detailed analysis of the transposon…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

Single-molecule sequencing and optical mapping yields an improved genome of woodland strawberry (Fragaria vesca) with chromosome-scale contiguity.

Although draft genomes are available for most agronomically important plant species, the majority are incomplete, highly fragmented, and often riddled with assembly and scaffolding errors. These assembly issues hinder advances in tool development for functional genomics and systems biology.Here we utilized a robust, cost-effective approach to produce high-quality reference genomes. We report a near-complete genome of diploid woodland strawberry (Fragaria vesca) using single-molecule real-time sequencing from Pacific Biosciences (PacBio). This assembly has a contig N50 length of ~7.9 million base pairs (Mb), representing a ~300-fold improvement of the previous version. The vast majority (>99.8%) of the assembly was anchored to…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

Expanding an expanded genome: long-read sequencing of Trypanosoma cruzi.

Although the genome of Trypanosoma cruzi, the causative agent of Chagas disease, was first made available in 2005, with additional strains reported later, the intrinsic genome complexity of this parasite (the abundance of repetitive sequences and genes organized in tandem) has traditionally hindered high-quality genome assembly and annotation. This also limits diverse types of analyses that require high degrees of precision. Long reads generated by third-generation sequencing technologies are particularly suitable to address the challenges associated with T. cruzi’s genome since they permit direct determination of the full sequence of large clusters of repetitive sequences without collapsing them. This, in…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

Advances in Sequencing and Resequencing in Crop Plants.

DNA sequencing technologies have changed the face of biological research over the last 20 years. From reference genomes to population level resequencing studies, these technologies have made significant contributions to our understanding of plant biology and evolution. As the technologies have increased in power, the breadth and complexity of the questions that can be asked has increased. Along with this, the challenges of managing unprecedented quantities of sequence data are mounting. This chapter describes a few aspects of the journey so far and looks forward to what may lie ahead.

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Friday, July 19, 2019

Long read assemblies of geographically dispersed Plasmodium falciparum isolates reveal highly structured subtelomeres.

Background: Although thousands of clinical isolates of Plasmodium falciparum are being sequenced and analysed by short read technology, the data do not resolve the highly variable subtelomeric regions of the genomes that contain polymorphic gene families involved in immune evasion and pathogenesis. There is also no current standard definition of the boundaries of these variable subtelomeric regions. Methods: Using long-read sequence data (Pacific Biosciences SMRT technology), we assembled and annotated the genomes of 15 P. falciparum isolates, ten of which are newly cultured clinical isolates. We performed comparative analysis of the entire genome with particular emphasis on the subtelomeric regions…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

Population genomics shows no distinction between pathogenic Candida krusei and environmental Pichia kudriavzevii: One species, four names.

We investigated genomic diversity of a yeast species that is both an opportunistic pathogen and an important industrial yeast. Under the name Candida krusei, it is responsible for about 2% of yeast infections caused by Candida species in humans. Bloodstream infections with C. krusei are problematic because most isolates are fluconazole-resistant. Under the names Pichia kudriavzevii, Issatchenkia orientalis and Candida glycerinogenes, the same yeast, including genetically modified strains, is used for industrial-scale production of glycerol and succinate. It is also used to make some fermented foods. Here, we sequenced the type strains of C. krusei (CBS573T) and P. kudriavzevii (CBS5147T),…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

A high-quality, long-read de novo genome assembly to aid conservation of Hawaii’s last remaining crow species

Genome-level data can provide researchers with unprecedented precision to examine the causes and genetic consequences of population declines, which can inform conservation management. Here, we present a high-quality, long-read, de novo genome assembly for one of the world’s most endangered bird species, the ?Alala (Corvus hawaiiensis; Hawaiian crow). As the only remaining native crow species in Hawai?i, the ?Alala survived solely in a captive-breeding program from 2002 until 2016, at which point a long-term reintroduction program was initiated. The high-quality genome assembly was generated to lay the foundation for both comparative genomics studies and the development of population-level genomic tools…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

Extensive intraspecific gene order and gene structural variations between Mo17 and other maize genomes.

Maize is an important crop with a high level of genome diversity and heterosis. The genome sequence of a typical female line, B73, was previously released. Here, we report a de novo genome assembly of a corresponding male representative line, Mo17. More than 96.4% of the 2,183?Mb assembled genome can be accounted for by 362 scaffolds in ten pseudochromosomes with 38,620 annotated protein-coding genes. Comparative analysis revealed large gene-order and gene structural variations: approximately 10% of the annotated genes were mutually nonsyntenic, and more than 20% of the predicted genes had either large-effect mutations or large structural variations, which might…

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Friday, July 19, 2019

A near complete, chromosome-scale assembly of the black raspberry (Rubus occidentalis) genome.

The fragmented nature of most draft plant genomes has hindered downstream gene discovery, trait mapping for breeding, and other functional genomics applications. There is a pressing need to improve or finish draft plant genome assemblies.Here, we present a chromosome-scale assembly of the black raspberry genome using single-molecule real-time Pacific Biosciences sequencing and high-throughput chromatin conformation capture (Hi-C) genome scaffolding. The updated V3 assembly has a contig N50 of 5.1 Mb, representing an ~200-fold improvement over the previous Illumina-based version. Each of the 235 contigs was anchored and oriented into seven chromosomes, correcting several major misassemblies. Black raspberry V3 contains 47…

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