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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Global phylogenomic analysis of nonencapsulated Streptococcus pneumoniae reveals a deep-branching classic lineage that is distinct from multiple sporadic lineages.

The surrounding capsule of Streptococcus pneumoniae has been identified as a major virulence factor and is targeted by pneumococcal conjugate vaccines (PCV). However, nonencapsulated S. pneumoniae (non-Ec-Sp) have also been isolated globally, mainly in carriage studies. It is unknown if non-Ec-Sp evolve sporadically, if they have high antibiotic nonsusceptiblity rates and a unique, specific gene content. Here, whole-genome sequencing of 131 non-Ec-Sp isolates sourced from 17 different locations around the world was performed. Results revealed a deep-branching classic lineage that is distinct from multiple sporadic lineages. The sporadic lineages clustered with a previously sequenced, global collection of encapsulated S. pneumoniae…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Genome of an arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus provides insight into the oldest plant symbiosis.

The mutualistic symbiosis involving Glomeromycota, a distinctive phylum of early diverging Fungi, is widely hypothesized to have promoted the evolution of land plants during the middle Paleozoic. These arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) perform vital functions in the phosphorus cycle that are fundamental to sustainable crop plant productivity. The unusual biological features of AMF have long fascinated evolutionary biologists. The coenocytic hyphae host a community of hundreds of nuclei and reproduce clonally through large multinucleated spores. It has been suggested that the AMF maintain a stable assemblage of several different genomes during the life cycle, but this genomic organization has been…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Neolithic mitochondrial haplogroup H genomes and the genetic origins of Europeans.

Haplogroup H dominates present-day Western European mitochondrial DNA variability (>40%), yet was less common (~19%) among Early Neolithic farmers (~5450 BC) and virtually absent in Mesolithic hunter-gatherers. Here we investigate this major component of the maternal population history of modern Europeans and sequence 39 complete haplogroup H mitochondrial genomes from ancient human remains. We then compare this ‘real-time’ genetic data with cultural changes taking place between the Early Neolithic (~5450 BC) and Bronze Age (~2200 BC) in Central Europe. Our results reveal that the current diversity and distribution of haplogroup H were largely established by the Mid Neolithic (~4000 BC),…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

The comparative landscape of duplications in Heliconius melpomene and Heliconius cydno.

Gene duplications can facilitate adaptation and may lead to interpopulation divergence, causing reproductive isolation. We used whole-genome resequencing data from 34 butterflies to detect duplications in two Heliconius species, Heliconius cydno and Heliconius melpomene. Taking advantage of three distinctive signals of duplication in short-read sequencing data, we identified 744 duplicated loci in H. cydno and H. melpomene and evaluated the accuracy of our approach using single-molecule sequencing. We have found that duplications overlap genes significantly less than expected at random in H. melpomene, consistent with the action of background selection against duplicates in functional regions of the genome. Duplicate loci…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Complex modular architecture around a simple toolkit of wing pattern genes

Identifying the genomic changes that control morphological variation and understanding how they generate diversity is a major goal of evolutionary biology. In Heliconius butterflies, a small number of genes control the development of diverse wing colour patterns. Here, we used full-genome sequencing of individuals across the Heliconius erato radiation and closely related species to characterize genomic variation associated with wing pattern diversity. We show that variation around colour pattern genes is highly modular, with narrow genomic intervals associated with specific differences in colour and pattern. This modular architecture explains the diversity of colour patterns and provides a flexible mechanism for…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Cytosine methylation at CpCpG sites triggers accumulation of non-CpG methylation in gene bodies.

Methylation of cytosine is an epigenetic mark involved in the regulation of transcription, usually associated with transcriptional repression. In mammals, methylated cytosines are found predominantly in CpGs but in plants non-CpG methylation (in the CpHpG or CpHpH contexts, where H is A, C or T) is also present and is associated with the transcriptional silencing of transposable elements. In addition, CpG methylation is found in coding regions of active genes. In the absence of the demethylase of lysine 9 of histone 3 (IBM1), a subset of body-methylated genes acquires non-CpG methylation. This was shown to alter their expression and affect…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Complex routes of nosocomial vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium transmission revealed by genome sequencing.

Vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium (VREfm) is a leading cause of nosocomial infection. Here, we describe the utility of whole-genome sequencing in defining nosocomial VREfm transmission.A retrospective study at a single hospital in the United Kingdom identified 342 patients with E. faecium bloodstream infection over 7 years. Of these, 293 patients had a stored isolate and formed the basis for the study. The first stored isolate from each case was sequenced (200 VREfm [197 vanA, 2 vanB, and 1 isolate containing both vanA and vanB], 93 vancomycin-susceptible E. faecium) and epidemiological data were collected. Genomes were also available for E. faecium associated…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Genome sequencing and population genomic analyses provide insights into the adaptive landscape of silver birch.

Silver birch (Betula pendula) is a pioneer boreal tree that can be induced to flower within 1 year. Its rapid life cycle, small (440-Mb) genome, and advanced germplasm resources make birch an attractive model for forest biotechnology. We assembled and chromosomally anchored the nuclear genome of an inbred B. pendula individual. Gene duplicates from the paleohexaploid event were enriched for transcriptional regulation, whereas tandem duplicates were overrepresented by environmental responses. Population resequencing of 80 individuals showed effective population size crashes at major points of climatic upheaval. Selective sweeps were enriched among polyploid duplicates encoding key developmental and physiological triggering functions,…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

No evidence for maintenance of a sympatric Heliconius species barrier by chromosomal inversions.

Mechanisms that suppress recombination are known to help maintain species barriers by preventing the breakup of coadapted gene combinations. The sympatric butterfly species Heliconius melpomene and Heliconius cydno are separated by many strong barriers, but the species still hybridize infrequently in the wild, and around 40% of the genome is influenced by introgression. We tested the hypothesis that genetic barriers between the species are maintained by inversions or other mechanisms that reduce between-species recombination rate. We constructed fine-scale recombination maps for Panamanian populations of both species and their hybrids to directly measure recombination rate within and between species, and generated…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

De novo yeast genome assemblies from MinION, PacBio and MiSeq platforms.

Long-read sequencing technologies such as Pacific Biosciences and Oxford Nanopore MinION are capable of producing long sequencing reads with average fragment lengths of over 10,000 base-pairs and maximum lengths reaching 100,000 base- pairs. Compared with short reads, the assemblies obtained from long-read sequencing platforms have much higher contig continuity and genome completeness as long fragments are able to extend paths into problematic or repetitive regions. Many successful assembly applications of the Pacific Biosciences technology have been reported ranging from small bacterial genomes to large plant and animal genomes. Recently, genome assemblies using Oxford Nanopore MinION data have attracted much attention…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

A high-coverage draft genome of the mycalesine butterfly Bicyclus anynana.

The mycalesine butterfly Bicyclus anynana , the ‘Squinting bush brown’, is a model organism in the study of lepidopteran ecology, development and evolution. Here, we present a draft genome sequence for B. anynana to serve as a genomics resource for current and future studies of this important model species.Seven libraries with insert sizes ranging from 350 bp to 20 kb were constructed using DNA from an inbred female and sequenced using both Illumina and PacBio technology. 128 Gb raw Illumina data were filtered to 124 Gb and assembled to a final size of 475 Mb (~260X assembly coverage). Contigs were…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Euglena gracilis genome and transcriptome: organelles, nuclear genome assembly strategies and initial features.

Euglena gracilis is a major component of the aquatic ecosystem and together with closely related species, is ubiquitous worldwide. Euglenoids are an important group of protists, possessing a secondarily acquired plastid and are relatives to the Kinetoplastidae, which themselves have global impact as disease agents. To understand the biology of E. gracilis, as well as to provide further insight into the evolution and origins of the Kinetoplastidae, we embarked on sequencing the nuclear genome; the plastid and mitochondrial genomes are already in the public domain. Earlier studies suggested an extensive nuclear DNA content, with likely a high degree of repetitive…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Insights into the red algae and eukaryotic evolution from the genome of Porphyra umbilicalis (Bangiophyceae, Rhodophyta).

Porphyra umbilicalis (laver) belongs to an ancient group of red algae (Bangiophyceae), is harvested for human food, and thrives in the harsh conditions of the upper intertidal zone. Here we present the 87.7-Mbp haploid Porphyra genome (65.8% G + C content, 13,125 gene loci) and elucidate traits that inform our understanding of the biology of red algae as one of the few multicellular eukaryotic lineages. Novel features of the Porphyra genome shared by other red algae relate to the cytoskeleton, calcium signaling, the cell cycle, and stress-tolerance mechanisms including photoprotection. Cytoskeletal motor proteins in Porphyra are restricted to a small…

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Genome and plasmid sequences of Escherichia coli KV7, an extended-spectrum ß-lactamase isolate derived from feces of a healthy pig.

We present single-contig assemblies for Escherichia coli strain KV7 (serotype O27, phylogenetic group D) and its six plasmids, isolated from a healthy pig, as determined by PacBio RS II and Illumina MiSeq sequencing. The chromosome of 4,997,475 bp and G+C content of 50.75% harbored 4,540 protein-encoding genes. Copyright © 2017 Bateman et al.

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Sunday, July 7, 2019

Genome-wide engineering of an infectious clone of herpes simplex virus type 1 using synthetic genomics assembly methods.

Here, we present a transformational approach to genome engineering of herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1), which has a large DNA genome, using synthetic genomics tools. We believe this method will enable more rapid and complex modifications of HSV-1 and other large DNA viruses than previous technologies, facilitating many useful applications. Yeast transformation-associated recombination was used to clone 11 fragments comprising the HSV-1 strain KOS 152 kb genome. Using overlapping sequences between the adjacent pieces, we assembled the fragments into a complete virus genome in yeast, transferred it into an Escherichia coli host, and reconstituted infectious virus following transfection into…

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