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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Aberration or analogy? The atypical plastomes of Geraniaceae

A number of plant groups have been proposed as ideal systems to explore plastid inheritance, plastome evolution and plastome-nuclear genome coevolution. Quick generation times and a compact nuclear genome in Arabidopsis thaliana, the relative ease of plastid isolation from Spinacia oleracea and the tractability of plastid transformation in Nicotiana tabacum are all desirable attributes in a model system; however, these and most other groups all lack novelty in terms of plastome structure and nucleotide sequence evolution. Contemporary sequencing and assembly technologies have facilitated analyses of atypical plastomes and, as predicted by early investigations, Geraniaceae plastomes have experienced unprecedented rearrangements relative…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Identification of candidate genes at the Dp-fl locus conferring resistance against the rosy apple aphid Dysaphis plantaginea

The cultivated apple is susceptible to several pests including the rosy apple aphid (RAA; Dysaphis plantaginea Passerini), control of which is mainly based on chemical treatments. A few cases of resistance to aphids have been described in apple germplasm resources, laying the basis for the development of new resistant cultivars by breeding. The cultivar ‘Florina’ is resistant to RAA, and recently, the Dp-fl locus responsible for its resistance was mapped on linkage group 8 of the apple genome. In this paper, a chromosome walking approach was performed by using a ‘Florina’ bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) library. The walking started from…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Screening and genomic characterization of filamentous hemagglutinin-deficient Bordetella pertussis.

Despite high vaccine coverage, pertussis cases in the United States have increased over the last decade. Growing evidence suggests that disease resurgence results, in part, from genetic divergence of circulating strain populations away from vaccine references. The United States employs acellular vaccines exclusively, and current Bordetella pertussis isolates are predominantly deficient in at least one immunogen, pertactin (Prn). First detected in the United States retrospectively in a 1994 isolate, the rapid spread of Prn deficiency is likely vaccine driven, raising concerns about whether other acellular vaccine immunogens experience similar pressures, as further antigenic changes could potentially threaten vaccine efficacy. We…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

The genome of the Hi5 germ cell line from Trichoplusia ni, an agricultural pest and novel model for small RNA biology.

We report a draft assembly of the genome of Hi5 cells from the lepidopteran insect pest,Trichoplusia ni, assigning 90.6% of bases to one of 28 chromosomes and predicting 14,037 protein-coding genes. Chemoreception and detoxification gene families revealT. ni-specific gene expansions that may explain its widespread distribution and rapid adaptation to insecticides. Transcriptome and small RNA data from thorax, ovary, testis, and the germline-derived Hi5 cell line show distinct expression profiles for 295 microRNA- and >393 piRNA-producing loci, as well as 39 genes encoding small RNA pathway proteins. Nearly all of the W chromosome is devoted to piRNA production, andT. nisiRNAs…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Comparative genomics of completely sequenced Lactobacillus helveticus genomes provides insights into strain-specific genes and resolves metagenomics data down to the strain level.

Although complete genome sequences hold particular value for an accurate description of core genomes, the identification of strain-specific genes, and as the optimal basis for functional genomics studies, they are still largely underrepresented in public repositories. Based on an assessment of the genome assembly complexity for all lactobacilli, we used Pacific Biosciences’ long read technology to sequence and de novo assemble the genomes of three Lactobacillus helveticus starter strains, raising the number of completely sequenced strains to 12. The first comparative genomics study for L. helveticus-to our knowledge-identified a core genome of 988 genes and sets of unique, strain-specific genes…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Genomes of 13 domesticated and wild rice relatives highlight genetic conservation, turnover and innovation across the genus Oryza.

The genus Oryza is a model system for the study of molecular evolution over time scales ranging from a few thousand to 15 million years. Using 13 reference genomes spanning the Oryza species tree, we show that despite few large-scale chromosomal rearrangements rapid species diversification is mirrored by lineage-specific emergence and turnover of many novel elements, including transposons, and potential new coding and noncoding genes. Our study resolves controversial areas of the Oryza phylogeny, showing a complex history of introgression among different chromosomes in the young ‘AA’ subclade containing the two domesticated species. This study highlights the prevalence of functionally…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Culture-facilitated comparative genomics of the facultative symbiont Hamiltonella defensa.

Many insects host facultative, bacterial symbionts that confer conditional fitness benefits to their hosts. Hamiltonella defensa is a common facultative symbiont of aphids that provides protection against parasitoid wasps. Protection levels vary among strains of H. defensa that are also differentially infected by bacteriophages named APSEs. However, little is known about trait variation among strains because only one isolate has been fully sequenced. Generating complete genomes for facultative symbionts is hindered by relatively large genome sizes but low abundances in hosts like aphids that are very small. Here, we took advantage of methods for culturing H. defensa outside of aphids…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Xanthomonas citri jumbo phage XacN1 exhibits a wide host range and high complement of tRNA genes.

Xanthomonas virus (phage) XacN1 is a novel jumbo myovirus infecting Xanthomonas citri, the causative agent of Asian citrus canker. Its linear 384,670?bp double-stranded DNA genome encodes 592 proteins and presents the longest (66?kbp) direct terminal repeats (DTRs) among sequenced viral genomes. The DTRs harbor 56 tRNA genes, which correspond to all 20 amino acids and represent the largest number of tRNA genes reported in a viral genome. Codon usage analysis revealed a propensity for the phage encoded tRNAs to target codons that are highly used by the phage but less frequently by its host. The existence of these tRNA genes…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Conventional and single-molecule targeted sequencing method for specific variant detection in IKBKG while bypassing the IKBKGP1 pseudogene.

In addition to Sanger sequencing, next-generation sequencing of gene panels and exomes has emerged as a standard diagnostic tool in many laboratories. However, these captures can miss regions, have poor efficiency, or capture pseudogenes, which hamper proper diagnoses. One such example is the primary immunodeficiency-associated gene IKBKG. Its pseudogene IKBKGP1 makes traditional capture methods aspecific. We therefore developed a long-range PCR method to efficiently target IKBKG, as well as two associated genes (IRAK4 and MYD88), while bypassing the IKBKGP1 pseudogene. Sequencing accuracy was evaluated using both conventional short-read technology and a newer long-read, single-molecule sequencer. Different mapping and variant calling…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Analysis of the Aedes albopictus C6/36 genome provides insight into cell line utility for viral propagation.

The 50-year-old Aedes albopictus C6/36 cell line is a resource for the detection, amplification, and analysis of mosquito-borne viruses including Zika, dengue, and chikungunya. The cell line is derived from an unknown number of larvae from an unspecified strain of Aedes albopictus mosquitoes. Toward improved utility of the cell line for research in virus transmission, we present an annotated assembly of the C6/36 genome.The C6/36 genome assembly has the largest contig N50 (3.3 Mbp) of any mosquito assembly, presents the sequences of both haplotypes for most of the diploid genome, reveals independent null mutations in both alleles of the Dicer…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Dissemination of KPC-2-encoding IncX6 plasmids among multiple Enterobacteriaceae species in a single Chinese hospital.

Forty-five KPC-producing Enterobacteriaceae strains were isolated from multiple departments in a Chinese public hospital from 2014 to 2015. Genome sequencing of four representative strains, namely Proteus mirabilis GN2, Serratia marcescens GN26, Morganella morganii GN28, and Klebsiella aerogenes E20, indicated the presence of blaKPC-2-carrying IncX6 plasmids pGN2-KPC, pGN26-KPC, pGN28-KPC, and pE20-KPC in the four strains, respectively. These plasmids were genetically closely related to one another and to the only previously sequenced IncX6 plasmid, pKPC3_SZ. Each of the plasmids carried a single accessory module containing the blaKPC-2/3-carrying ?Tn6296 derivatives. The ?Tn6292 element from pGN26-KPC also contained qnrS, which was absent from all…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Primordial origin and diversification of plasmids in Lyme disease agent bacteria.

With approximately one-third of their genomes consisting of linear and circular plasmids, the Lyme disease agent cluster of species has the most complex genomes among known bacteria. We report here a comparative analysis of plasmids in eleven Borreliella (also known as Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato) species.We sequenced the complete genomes of two B. afzelii, two B. garinii, and individual B. spielmanii, B. bissettiae, B. valaisiana and B. finlandensis isolates. These individual isolates carry between seven and sixteen plasmids, and together harbor 99 plasmids. We report here a comparative analysis of these plasmids, along with 70 additional Borreliella plasmids available in…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

In vitro culture of the insect endosymbiont Spiroplasma poulsonii highlights bacterial genes involved in host-symbiont interaction.

Endosymbiotic bacteria associated with eukaryotic hosts are omnipresent in nature, particularly in insects. Studying the bacterial side of host-symbiont interactions is, however, often limited by the unculturability and genetic intractability of the symbionts. Spiroplasma poulsonii is a maternally transmitted bacterial endosymbiont that is naturally associated with several Drosophila species. S. poulsonii strongly affects its host’s physiology, for example by causing male killing or by protecting it against various parasites. Despite intense work on this model since the 1950s, attempts to cultivate endosymbiotic Spiroplasma in vitro have failed so far. Here, we developed a method to sustain the in vitro culture of…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Repeat-driven generation of antigenic diversity in a major human pathogen, Trypanosoma cruzi

Trypanosoma cruzi, a zoonotic kinetoplastid protozoan with a complex genome, is the causative agent of American trypanosomiasis (Chagas disease). The parasite uses a highly diverse repertoire of surface molecules, with roles in cell invasion, immune evasion and pathogenesis. Thus far, the genomic regions containing these genes have been impossible to resolve and it has been impossible to study the structure and function of the several thousand repetitive genes encoding the surface molecules of the parasite. We here present an improved genome assembly of a T. cruzi clade I (TcI) strain using high coverage PacBio single molecule sequencing, together with Illumina…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

The genome sequence of a new strain of Mycobacterium ulcerans ecovar Liflandii, emerging as a sturgeon pathogen

Mycobacterium ulcerans ecovar Liflandii (MuLiflandii) is emerging as a non-mycobacterial pathogen in amphibians. Here, we make the first report on the prevalence of a new strain of MuLiflandii infection in Chinese sturgeon. All the diseased fish showed the classic clinical symptoms of ascites and/or muscle ulceration. A new slow-growing and acid-fast bacillus ASM001 strain was obtained from the ascites of infected fish; this strain demonstrated pathogenicity when tested in hybrid sturgeon. The complete genome sequence of MuLiflandii ASM001 is a circular chromosome of 6,167,296?bp, with a G?+?C content of 65.57%, containing 4518 predicted coding DNA sequences and 999 pseudo-genes, 3…

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