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Sunday, September 22, 2019

KIR3DL01 upregulation on gut natural killer cells in response to SIV infection of KIR- and MHC class I-defined rhesus macaques.

Natural killer cells provide an important early defense against viral pathogens and are regulated in part by interactions between highly polymorphic killer-cell immunoglobulin-like receptors (KIRs) on NK cells and their MHC class I ligands on target cells. We previously identified MHC class I ligands for two rhesus macaque KIRs: KIR3DL01 recognizes Mamu-Bw4 molecules and KIR3DL05 recognizes Mamu-A1*002. To determine how these interactions influence NK cell responses, we infected KIR3DL01+ and KIR3DL05+ macaques with and without defined ligands for these receptors with SIVmac239, and monitored NK cell responses in peripheral blood and lymphoid tissues. NK cell responses in blood were broadly…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Novel full-length major histocompatibility complex class I allele discovery and haplotype definition in pig-tailed macaques.

Pig-tailed macaques (Macaca nemestrina, Mane) are important models for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) studies. Their infectability with minimally modified HIV makes them a uniquely valuable animal model to mimic human infection with HIV and progression to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). However, variation in the pig-tailed macaque major histocompatibility complex (MHC) and the impact of individual transcripts on the pathogenesis of HIV and other infectious diseases is understudied compared to that of rhesus and cynomolgus macaques. In this study, we used Pacific Biosciences single-molecule real-time circular consensus sequencing to describe full-length MHC class I (MHC-I) transcripts for 194 pig-tailed macaques from…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Somatic second hit mutation of RASA1 in vascular endothelial cells in capillary malformation-arteriovenous malformation.

Capillary malformation-arteriovenous malformation (CM-AVM) is an autosomal dominant vascular disorder that is associated with inherited inactivating mutations of the RASA1 gene in the majority of cases. Characteristically, patients exhibit one or more focal cutaneous CM that may occur alone or together with AVM, arteriovenous fistulas or lymphatic vessel abnormalities. The focal nature and varying presentation of lesions has led to the hypothesis that somatic “second hit” inactivating mutations of RASA1 are necessary for disease development. In this study, we examined CM from four different CM-AVM patients for the presence of somatically acquired RASA1 mutations. All four patients were shown to…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Comparative genomics of Spiraeoideae-infecting Erwinia amylovora strains provides novel insight to genetic diversity and identifies the genetic basis of a low-virulence strain.

Erwinia amylovora is the causal agent of fire blight, one of the most devastating diseases of apple and pear. Erwinia amylovora is thought to have originated in North America and has now spread to at least 50 countries worldwide. An understanding of the diversity of the pathogen population and the transmission to different geographical regions is important for the future mitigation of this disease. In this research, we performed an expanded comparative genomic study of the Spiraeoideae-infecting (SI) E. amylovora population in North America and Europe. We discovered that, although still highly homogeneous, the genetic diversity of 30 E. amylovora genomes examined…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Comparative genomics of Escherichia coli sequence type 219 clones from the same patient: Evolution of the IncI1 blaCMY-carrying plasmid in vivo.

This study investigates the evolution of an Escherichia coli sequence type 219 clone in a patient with recurrent urinary tract infection, comparing isolate EC974 obtained prior to antibiotic treatment and isolate EC1515 recovered after exposure to several ß-lactam antibiotics (ceftriaxone, cefixime, and imipenem). EC974 had a smooth colony morphology, while EC1515 had a rough colony morphology on sheep blood agar. RAPD-PCR analysis suggested that both isolates belonged to the same clone. Antimicrobial susceptibility tests showed that EC1515 was more resistant to piperacillin/tazobactam, cefepime, cefpirome, and ertapenem than EC974. Comparative genomic analysis was used to investigate the genetic changes of EC974…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

The integrative conjugative element clc (ICEclc) of Pseudomonas aeruginosa JB2.

Integrative conjugative elements (ICE) are a diverse group of chromosomally integrated, self-transmissible mobile genetic elements (MGE) that are active in shaping the functions of bacteria and bacterial communities. Each type of ICE carries a characteristic set of core genes encoding functions essential for maintenance and self-transmission, and cargo genes that endow on hosts phenotypes beneficial for niche adaptation. An important area to which ICE can contribute beneficial functions is the biodegradation of xenobiotic compounds. In the biodegradation realm, the best-characterized ICE is ICEclc, which carries cargo genes encoding for ortho-cleavage of chlorocatechols (clc genes) and aminophenol metabolism (amn genes). The…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

The energy-coupling factor transporter module EcfAA’T, a novel candidate for the genetic basis of fatty acid-auxotrophic small-colony variants of Staphylococcus aureus.

Staphylococcal small-colony variants (SCVs) are invasive and persistent due to their ability to thrive intracellularly and to evade the host immune response. Thus, the course of infections due to this phenotype is often chronic, relapsing, and therapy-refractory. In order to improve treatment of patients suffering from SCV-associated infections, it is of major interest to understand triggers for the development of this phenotype, in particular for strains naturally occurring in clinical settings. Within this study, we comprehensively characterized two different Staphylococcus aureus triplets each consisting of isogenic strains comprising (i) clinically derived SCV phenotypes with auxotrophy for unsaturated fatty acids, (ii)…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Bacterial virulence against an oceanic bloom-forming phytoplankter is mediated by algal DMSP

Emiliania huxleyi is a bloom-forming microalga that affects the global sulfur cycle by producing large amounts of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) and its volatile metabolic product dimethyl sulfide. Top-down regulation of E. huxleyi blooms has been attributed to viruses and grazers; however, the possible involvement of algicidal bacteria in bloom demise has remained elusive. We demonstrate that a Roseobacter strain, Sulfitobacter D7, that we isolated from a North Atlantic E. huxleyi bloom, exhibited algicidal effects against E. huxleyi upon coculturing. Both the alga and the bacterium were found to co-occur during a natural E. huxleyi bloom, therefore establishing this host-pathogen system as…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

The phylogenomic diversity of herbivore- associated Fibrobacter spp. is correlated to lignocellulose-degrading potential.

Members of the genus Fibrobacter are cellulose-degrading bacteria and common constituents of the gastrointestinal microbiota of herbivores. Although considerable phylogenetic diversity is observed among members of this group, few functional differences explaining the distinct ecological distributions of specific phylotypes have been described. In this study, we sequenced and performed a comparative analysis of whole genomes from 38 novel Fibrobacter strains against the type strains for the two formally described Fibrobacter species F. succinogenes strain S85 and F. intestinalis strain NR9. Significant differences in the number of genes encoding carbohydrate-active enzyme families involved in plant cell wall polysaccharide degradation were observed…

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Saturday, September 21, 2019

in silico Whole Genome Sequencer & Analyzer (iWGS): a computational pipeline to guide the design and analysis of de novo genome sequencing studies.

The availability of genomes across the tree of life is highly biased toward vertebrates, pathogens, human disease models, and organisms with relatively small and simple genomes. Recent progress in genomics has enabled the de novo decoding of the genome of virtually any organism, greatly expanding its potential for understanding the biology and evolution of the full spectrum of biodiversity. The increasing diversity of sequencing technologies, assays, and de novo assembly algorithms have augmented the complexity of de novo genome sequencing projects in non-model organisms. To reduce the costs and challenges in de novo genome sequencing projects and streamline their experimental…

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