WorldWideScience

Sample records for fungal symbiont amylostereum

  1. Mutualism and asexual reproduction influence recognition genes in a fungal symbiont.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Nest, Magriet A; Steenkamp, Emma T; Wilken, Markus P; Stenlid, Jan; Wingfield, Mike J; Wingfield, Brenda D; Slippers, Bernard

    2013-06-01

    Mutualism between microbes and insects is common and alignment of the reproductive interests of microbial symbionts with this lifestyle typically involves clonal reproduction and vertical transmission by insect partners. Here the Amylostereum fungus-Sirex woodwasp mutualism was used to consider whether their prolonged association and predominance of asexuality have affected the mating system of the fungal partner. Nucleotide information for the pheromone receptor gene rab1, as well as the translation elongation factor 1α gene and ribosomal RNA internal transcribed spacer region were utilized. The identification of rab1 alleles in Amylostereum chailletii and Amylostereum areolatum populations revealed that this gene is more polymorphic than the other two regions, although the diversity of all three regions was lower than what has been observed in free-living Agaricomycetes. Our data suggest that suppressed recombination might be implicated in the diversification of rab1, while no evidence of balancing selection was detected. We also detected positive selection at only two codons, suggesting that purifying selection is important for the evolution of rab1. The symbiotic relationship with their insect partners has therefore influenced the diversity of this gene and influenced the manner in which selection drives and maintains this diversity in A. areolatum and A. chailletii.

  2. Fungal symbionts alter plant drought response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Worchel, Elise R; Giauque, Hannah E; Kivlin, Stephanie N

    2013-04-01

    Grassland productivity is often primarily limited by water availability, and therefore, grasslands may be especially sensitive to climate change. Fungal symbionts can mediate plant drought response by enhancing drought tolerance and avoidance, but these effects have not been quantified across grass species. We performed a factorial meta-analysis of previously published studies to determine how arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi and endophytic fungal symbionts affect growth of grasses under drought. We then examined how the effect of fungal symbionts on plant growth was influenced by biotic (plant photosynthetic pathway) and abiotic (level of drought) factors. We also measured the phylogenetic signal of fungal symbionts on grass growth under control and drought conditions. Under drought conditions, grasses colonized by AM fungi grew larger than those without mycorrhizal symbionts. The increased growth of grasses conferred from fungal symbionts was greatest at the lowest soil moisture levels. Furthermore, under both drought and control conditions, C3 grasses colonized by AM fungi grew larger than C3 grasses without symbionts, but the biomass of C4 grasses was not affected by AM fungi. Endophytes did not increase plant biomass overall under any treatment. However, there was a phylogenetically conserved increase in plant biomass in grasses colonized by endophytes. Grasses and their fungal symbionts seem to interact within a context-dependent symbiosis, varying with biotic and abiotic conditions. Because plant-fungal symbioses significantly alter plant drought response, including these responses could improve our ability to predict grassland functioning under global change.

  3. EPICHLOE SPECIES: fungal symbionts of grasses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schardl, C L

    1996-01-01

    Epichloë species and their asexual descendants (Acremonium endophytes) are fungal symbionts of C3 grasses that span the symbiotic continuum from antagonism to mutualism depending on the relative importance, respectively, of horizontal transmission of sexual spores versus vertical clonal transmission in healthy grass seeds. At least seven sexual Epichloë species are identifiable by mating tests, and many asexual genotypes are interspecific hybrids. Benefits conferred by the symbionts on host plants include protection from biotic factors and abiotic stresses such as drought. Four classes of beneficial alkaloids are associated with the symbionts: ergot alkaloids, indolediterpenes (lolitrems), peramine, and saturated aminopyrrolizidines (lolines). These alkaloids protect host plants from insect and vertebrate herbivores, including livestock. Genetic engineering of the fungal symbionts as more suitable biological protectants for forage grasses requires identification of fungal genes for alkaloid biosynthesis, and DNA-mediated transformation of the fungi.

  4. Fungal symbionts alter plant responses to global change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kivlin, Stephanie N; Emery, Sarah M; Rudgers, Jennifer A

    2013-07-01

    While direct plant responses to global change have been well characterized, indirect plant responses to global change, via altered species interactions, have received less attention. Here, we examined how plants associated with four classes of fungal symbionts (class I leaf endophytes [EF], arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi [AMF], ectomycorrhizal fungi [ECM], and dark septate endophytes [DSE]) responded to four global change factors (enriched CO2, drought, N deposition, and warming). We performed a meta-analysis of 434 studies spanning 174 publications to search for generalizable trends in responses of plant-fungal symbioses to future environments. Specifically, we addressed the following questions: (1) Can fungal symbionts ameliorate responses of plants to global change? (2) Do fungal symbiont groups differ in the degree to which they modify plant response to global change? (3) Do particular global change factors affect plant-fungal symbioses more than others? In all global change scenarios, except elevated CO2, fungal symbionts significantly altered plant responses to global change. In most cases, fungal symbionts increased plant biomass in response to global change. However, increased N deposition reduced the benefits of symbiosis. Of the global change factors we considered, drought and N deposition resulted in the strongest fungal mediation of plant responses. Our analysis highlighted gaps in current knowledge for responses of particular fungal groups and revealed the importance of considering not only the nonadditive effects of multiple global change factors, but also the interactive effects of multiple fungal symbioses. Our results show that considering plant-fungal symbioses is critical to predicting ecosystem response to global change.

  5. Bacterial and fungal symbionts of parasitic Dendroctonus bark beetles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dohet, Loïc; Grégoire, Jean-Claude; Berasategui, Aileen; Kaltenpoth, Martin; Biedermann, Peter H W

    2016-09-01

    Bark beetles (Curculionidae: Scolytinae) are one of the most species-rich herbivorous insect groups with many shifts in ecology and host-plant use, which may be mediated by their bacterial and fungal symbionts. While symbionts are well studied in economically important, tree-killing species, little is known about parasitic species whose broods develop in living trees. Here, using culture-dependent and independent methods, we provide a comprehensive overview of the associated bacteria, yeasts and filamentous fungi of the parasitic Dendroctonus micans, D. punctatus and D. valens, and compare them to those of other tree-inhabiting insects. Despite inhabiting different geographical regions and/or host trees, the three species showed similar microbial communities. Enterobacteria were the most prevalent bacteria, in particular Rahnella, Pantoea and Ewingella, in addition to Streptomyces Likewise, the yeasts Candida/Cyberlindnera were the most prominent fungi. All these microorganisms are widespread among tree-inhabiting insects with various ecologies, but their high prevalence overall might indicate a beneficial role such as detoxification of tree defenses, diet supplementation or protection against pathogens. As such, our results enable comparisons of symbiont communities of parasitic bark beetles with those of other beetles, and will contribute to our understanding of how microbial symbioses facilitate dietary shifts in insects.

  6. Farming termites determine the genetic population structure of Termitomyces fungal symbionts

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nobre, Tânia; Fernandes, Cecília; Boomsma, Jacobus J

    2011-01-01

    fungal symbionts. However, even in the few termite lineages that secondarily adopted vertical symbiont transmission, the fungal symbionts are not monophyletic. We addressed this paradox by studying differential transmission of fungal symbionts by alate male and female reproductives, and the genetic......Symbiotic interactions between macrotermitine termites and their fungal symbionts have a moderate degree of specificity. Consistent with horizontal symbiont transmission, host switching has been frequent over evolutionary time so that single termite species can often be associated with several...... associated with the alternative termite hosts Macrotermes subhyalinus and Macrotermes natalensis. While Termitomyces associated with these alternative hosts are horizontally transmitted and recombine freely, the genetic population structure of the same Termitomyces associated with M. bellicosus is consistent...

  7. Farming termites determine the genetic population structure of Termitomyces fungal symbionts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nobre, Tânia; Fernandes, Cecília; Boomsma, Jacobus J; Korb, Judith; Aanen, Duur K

    2011-05-01

    Symbiotic interactions between macrotermitine termites and their fungal symbionts have a moderate degree of specificity. Consistent with horizontal symbiont transmission, host switching has been frequent over evolutionary time so that single termite species can often be associated with several fungal symbionts. However, even in the few termite lineages that secondarily adopted vertical symbiont transmission, the fungal symbionts are not monophyletic. We addressed this paradox by studying differential transmission of fungal symbionts by alate male and female reproductives, and the genetic population structure of Termitomyces fungus gardens across 74 colonies of Macrotermes bellicosus in four west and central African countries. We confirm earlier, more limited, studies showing that the Termitomyces symbionts of M. bellicosus are normally transmitted vertically and clonally by dispersing males. We also document that the symbionts associated with this termite species belong to three main lineages that do not constitute a monophyletic group. The most common lineage occurs over the entire geographical region that we studied, including west, central and southern Africa, where it is also associated with the alternative termite hosts Macrotermes subhyalinus and Macrotermes natalensis. While Termitomyces associated with these alternative hosts are horizontally transmitted and recombine freely, the genetic population structure of the same Termitomyces associated with M. bellicosus is consistent with predominantly clonal reproduction and only occasional recombination. This implies that the genetic population structure of Termitomyces is controlled by the termite host and not by the Termitomyces symbiont.

  8. Ephemeral windows of opportunity for horizontal transmission of fungal symbionts in leaf-cutting ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Poulsen, Michael; Fernández-Marín, Hermógenes; Currie, Cameron R.

    2009-01-01

    Evolutionary theory predicts that hosts are selected to prevent mixing of genetically different symbionts when competition among lineages reduces the productivity of a mutualism. The symbionts themselves may also defend their interests: recent studies of Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants showed...... that somatic incompatibility enforces single-clone gardens within mature colonies, thereby constraining horizontal transmission of fungal symbionts. However, phylogenetic analyses indicate that symbiont switches occur frequently enough to remove most signs of host-symbiont cocladogenesis. Here we resolve...... this paradox by showing that transmission among newly founded Acromyrmex colonies is not constrained. All tested queens of sympatric A. octospinosus and A. echinatior offered a novel fragment of fungus garden accepted the new symbiont. The outcome was unaffected by genetic distance between the novel...

  9. Negative fitness consequences and transmission dynamics of a heritable fungal symbiont of a parasitic wasp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibson, Cara M; Hunter, Martha S

    2009-05-01

    Heritable bacterial symbionts are widespread in insects and can have many important effects on host ecology and fitness. Fungal symbionts are also important in shaping their hosts' behavior, interactions, and evolution, but they have been largely overlooked. Experimental tests to determine the relevance of fungal symbionts to their insect hosts are currently extremely rare, and to our knowledge, there have been no such tests for strictly predacious insects. We investigated the fitness consequences for a parasitic wasp (Comperia merceti) of an inherited fungal symbiont in the Saccharomycotina (Ascomycota) that was long presumed to be a mutualist. In comparisons of wasp lines with and without this symbiont, we found no evidence of mutualism. Instead, there were significant fitness costs to the wasps in the presence of the yeast; infected wasps attacked fewer hosts and had longer development times. We also examined the relative competitive abilities of the larval progeny of infected and uninfected mothers, as well as horizontal transmission of the fungal symbiont among larval wasps that shared a single host cockroach egg case. We found no difference in larval competitive ability when larvae whose infection status differed shared a single host. We did find high rates of horizontal transmission of the fungus, and we suggest that this transmission is likely responsible for the maintenance of this infection in wasp populations.

  10. Unraveling the role of fungal symbionts in plant abiotic stress tolerance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Lamabam Peter; Gill, Sarvajeet Singh; Tuteja, Narendra

    2011-02-01

    Fungal symbionts have been found associated with every plant studied in natural ecosystem, where they colonize and reside entirely in the internal tissues of their host plant or partially. Fungal endophytes can express/form a range of different lifestyle/relationships with different host including symbiotic, mutualistic, commensalistic and parasitic in response to host genotype and environmental factors. In mutualistic association fungal endophyte can enhance growth, increase reproductive success and confer biotic and abiotic stress tolerance to its host plant. Since abiotic stress such as, drought, high soil salinity, heat, cold, oxidative stress, heavy metal toxicity is the common adverse environmental conditions that affect and limit crop productivity worldwide. It may be a promising alternative strategy to exploit fungal endophytes to overcome the limitations to crop production brought by abiotic stress. There is increasing interest in developing the potential biotechnological applications of fungal endophytes for improving plant stress tolerance and sustainable production of food crops. Here we have described the fungal symbioses, fungal symbionts and their role in abiotic stress tolerance. A putative mechanism of stress tolerance by symbionts has also been covered.

  11. Asymmetric interaction specificity between two sympatric termites and their fungal symbionts.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fine Licht, De H.H.; Boomsma, J.J.

    2007-01-01

    1. Fungus-growing termites live in an obligate mutualistic symbiosis with Termitomyces fungi. The functions of the fungal symbiont have been hypothesised to differ between species and to range from highly specific roles of providing plant-degrading enzymes complementary to termite gut enzymes, to no

  12. Fungal symbionts of grasses: evolutionary insights and agricultural potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, B; Schardl, C

    1993-08-01

    Some filamentous fungal endophytes confer on their grass hosts important biological properties including resistance to grazing herbivores and resistance to nematodes and some fungal pathogens, as well as drought tolerance and greater field persistence. The production of alkaloids toxic to grazing animals is an undesirable aspect of the association in agronomic situations. Consequently, genetic strategies are being pursued to manipulate fungal endophytes and their hosts for agricultural benefit.

  13. Long-term ungulate exclusion reduces fungal symbiont prevalence in native grasslands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rudgers, Jennifer A; Fletcher, Rebecca A; Olivas, Eric; Young, Carolyn A; Charlton, Nikki D; Pearson, Dean E; Maron, John L

    2016-08-01

    When symbionts are inherited by offspring, they can have substantial ecological and evolutionary consequences because they occur in all host life stages. Although natural frequencies of inherited symbionts are commonly endophytes can improve resistance to herbivory, growth under drought, and competitive ability. We evaluated whether native ungulate herbivory increased the prevalence of a fungal endophyte in the common, native bunchgrass, Festuca campestris (rough fescue, Poaceae). We used large-scale (1 ha) and long-term (7-10 year) fencing treatments to exclude native ungulates and recorded shifts in endophyte prevalence at the scale of plant populations and for individual plants. We characterized the fungal endophyte in F. campestris, Epichloë species FcaTG-1 (F. campestris taxonomic group 1) for the first time. Under ungulate exclusion, endophyte prevalence was 19 % lower in plant populations, 25 % lower within plant individuals, and 39 % lower in offspring (seeds) than in ungulate-exposed controls. Population-level endophyte frequencies were also negatively correlated with soil moisture across geographic sites. Observations of high within-plant variability in symbiont prevalence are novel for the Epichloë species, and contribute to a small, but growing, literature that documents phenotypic plasticity in plant-endophyte symbiota. Altogether, we show that native ungulates can be an important driver of symbiont prevalence in native plant populations, even in the absence of evidence for direct mechanisms of mammal deterrence. Understanding the ecological controls on symbiont prevalence could help to predict future shifts in grasslands that are dominated by Epichloë host plants.

  14. The origin of the chemical profiles of fungal symbionts and their significance for nestmate recognition in Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Richard, Freddie-Jeanne; Poulsen, Michael; Hefetz, Abraham

    2007-01-01

    and evaluated the quantitative variation of the 47 compounds in a multivariate analysis. Colony-specific chemical profiles of fungal symbionts were highly distinct and significantly different between the two ant species. We also estimated the relative genetic distances between the fungal symbionts using...... in chemical profiles could be explained by genetic differences between the fungal symbionts. However, there was no significant effect of ant species in partial analyses because genetic differences between symbionts tend to coincide with being reared by different ant species. However, compound groups differed...... significantly with amides, aldehydes, and methyl esters contributing to the correlations, but acetates, alkanes, and formates being unrelated to genetic variation among symbionts. We show experimentally that workers that are previously exposed to and fed with the fungal symbiont of another colony are met...

  15. Inherited fungal symbionts enhance establishment of an invasive annual grass across successional habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uchitel, Andrea; Omacini, Marina; Chaneton, Enrique J

    2011-02-01

    Plants infected with vertically transmitted fungal endophytes carry their microbial symbionts with them during dispersal into new areas. Yet, whether seed-borne endophytes enhance the host plant's ability to overcome colonisation barriers and to regenerate within invaded sites remains poorly understood. We examined how symbiosis with asexual endophytic fungi (Neotyphodium) affected establishment and seed loss to predators in the invasive annual grass Lolium multiflorum (Italian ryegrass) across contrasting successional plots. Italian ryegrass seeds with high and low endophyte incidence were sown into three communities: a 1-year-old fallow field, a 15-year-old grassland, and a 24-year-old forest, which conformed to an old-field chronosequence in the eastern Inland Pampa, Argentina. We found that endophyte infection consistently increased host population recruitment and reproductive output. Endophyte presence also enhanced aerial biomass production of ryegrass in a low recruitment year but not in a high recruitment year, suggesting that symbiotic effects on growth performance are density dependent. Endophyte presence reduced seed removal by rodents, although differential predation may not account for the increased success of infected grass populations. Overall, there was no statistical evidence for an endophyte-by-site interaction, indicating that the fungal endosymbiont benefitted host establishment regardless of large differences in biotic and abiotic environment among communities. Our results imply that hereditary endophytes may increase the chances for host grass species to pass various ecological filters associated with invasion resistance across a broad range of successional habitats.

  16. Highly variable microsatellite markers for the fungal and algal symbionts of the lichen Lobaria pulmonaria and challenges in developing biont-specific molecular markers for fungal associations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Widmer, Ivo; Dal Grande, Francesco; Cornejo, Carolina; Scheidegger, Christoph

    2010-07-01

    The availability of highly variable markers for the partners of a fungal symbiosis enables the integrated investigation of ecological and evolutionary processes at the symbiotic level. In this article we analyze the specificity of the first and to date only microsatellite markers that had been developed for an epiphytic lichen (Lobaria pulmonaria). We used DNA extracts from cultures of the fungal and of the green algal symbionts of L. pulmonaria as well as total DNA extracts from related Lobaria species associated with the same algal partner, and got evidence that five of the previously described microsatellite markers, proposed to be fungus-specific, are indeed alga-specific. Hence, highly variable microsatellite primer sets available for both, the algal and the fungal symbionts of L. pulmonaria are now at our hands, which allow us to investigate so far unexplored biological processes of lichen symbionts, such as codispersal and coevolution. In a broader sense, our work evaluates and discusses the challenges in developing biont-specific molecular markers for fungi forming close associations with other organisms.

  17. Horizontal gene transfer of a bacterial insect toxin gene into the Epichloë fungal symbionts of grasses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ambrose, Karen V.; Koppenhöfer, Albrecht M.; Belanger, Faith C.

    2014-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer is recognized as an important factor in genome evolution, particularly when the newly acquired gene confers a new capability to the recipient species. We identified a gene similar to the makes caterpillars floppy (mcf1 and mcf2) insect toxin genes in Photorhabdus, bacterial symbionts of nematodes, in the genomes of the Epichloë fungi, which are intercellular symbionts of grasses. Infection by Epichloë spp. often confers insect resistance to the grass hosts, largely due to the production of fungal alkaloids. A mcf-like gene is present in all of the Epichloë genome sequences currently available but in no other fungal genomes. This suggests the Epichloë genes were derived from a single lineage-specific HGT event. Molecular dating was used to estimate the time of the HGT event at between 7.2 and 58.8 million years ago. The mcf-like coding sequence from Epichloë typhina subsp. poae was cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli. E. coli cells expressing the Mcf protein were toxic to black cutworms (Agrotis ipsilon), whereas E. coli cells containing the vector only were non-toxic. These results suggest that the Epichloë mcf-like genes may be a component, in addition to the fungal alkaloids, of the insect resistance observed in Epichloë-infected grasses. PMID:24990771

  18. The origin of the chemical profiles of fungal symbionts and their significance for nestmate recognition in Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Richard, Freddie-Jeanne; Poulsen, Michael; Hefetz, Abraham;

    2007-01-01

    Cuticular hydrocarbon profiles are essential for nestmate recognition in insect societies, and quantitative variation in these recognition cues is both environmentally and genetically determined. Environmental cues are normally derived from food or nest material, but an exceptional situation may...... significantly with amides, aldehydes, and methyl esters contributing to the correlations, but acetates, alkanes, and formates being unrelated to genetic variation among symbionts. We show experimentally that workers that are previously exposed to and fed with the fungal symbiont of another colony are met...

  19. A fungal symbiont of the redbay ambrosia beetle causes a lethal wilt in redbay and other lauraceae in the Southeastern United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fraedrich. S.W.; T.C. Harrington; R.J. Rabaglia; M.D. Ulyshen; A.E. Mayfield; J.L. Hanula; J.M. Eickwort; D.R. Miller

    2008-01-01

    Extensive mortality of redbay has been observed in the coastal plain counties of Georgia and southeastern South Carolina since 2003 and northeastern Florida since 2005. We show that the redbay mortality is due to a vascular wilt disease caused by an undescribed Raffaelea sp. that is a fungal symbiont of Xyleborus glabratus, an...

  20. Aboveground Epichloë coenophiala-Grass Associations Do Not Affect Belowground Fungal Symbionts or Associated Plant, Soil Parameters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slaughter, Lindsey C; McCulley, Rebecca L

    2016-10-01

    Cool season grasses host multiple fungal symbionts, such as aboveground Epichloë endophytes and belowground arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and dark septate endophytes (DSEs). Asexual Epichloë endophytes can influence root colonization by AMF, but the type of interaction-whether antagonistic or beneficial-varies. In Schedonorus arundinaceus (tall fescue), Epichloë coenophiala can negatively affect AMF, which may impact soil properties and ecosystem function. Within field plots of S. arundinaceus that were either E. coenophiala-free (E-), infected with the common, mammal-toxic E. coenophiala strain (CTE+), or infected with one of two novel, non-toxic strains (AR542 NTE+ and AR584 NTE+), we hypothesized that (1) CTE+ would decrease AMF and DSE colonization rates and reduce soil extraradical AMF hyphae compared to E- or NTE+, and (2) this would lead to E- and NTE+ plots having greater water stable soil aggregates and C than CTE+. E. coenophiala presence and strain did not significantly alter AMF or DSE colonization, nor did it affect extraradical AMF hypha length, soil aggregates, or aggregate-associated C and N. Soil extraradical AMF hypha length negatively correlated with root AMF colonization. Our results contrast with previous demonstrations that E. coenophiala symbiosis inhibits belowground AMF communities. In our mesic, relatively nutrient-rich grassland, E. coenophiala symbiosis did not antagonize belowground symbionts, regardless of strain. Manipulating E. coenophiala strains within S. arundinaceus may not significantly alter AMF communities and nutrient cycling, yet we must further explore these relationships under different soils and environmental conditions given that symbiont interactions can be important in determining ecosystem response to global change.

  1. The most relictual fungus-farming ant species cultivates the most recently evolved and highly domesticated fungal symbiont species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schultz, Ted R; Sosa-Calvo, Jeffrey; Brady, Seán G; Lopes, Cauê T; Mueller, Ulrich G; Bacci, Mauricio; Vasconcelos, Heraldo L

    2015-05-01

    Fungus-farming (attine) ant agriculture is made up of five known agricultural systems characterized by remarkable symbiont fidelity in which five phylogenetic groups of ants faithfully cultivate five phylogenetic groups of fungi. Here we describe the first case of a lower-attine ant cultivating a higher-attine fungus based on our discovery of a Brazilian population of the relictual fungus-farming ant Apterostigma megacephala, known previously from four stray specimens from Peru and Colombia. We find that A. megacephala is the sole surviving representative of an ancient lineage that diverged ∼39 million years ago, very early in the ∼55-million-year evolution of fungus-farming ants. Contrary to all previously known patterns of ant-fungus symbiont fidelity, A. megacephala cultivates Leucoagaricus gongylophorus, a highly domesticated fungal cultivar that originated only 2-8 million years ago in the gardens of the highly derived and recently evolved (∼12 million years ago) leaf-cutting ants. Because no other lower fungus-farming ant is known to cultivate any of the higher-attine fungi, let alone the leaf-cutter fungus, A. megacephala may provide important clues about the biological mechanisms constraining the otherwise seemingly obligate ant-fungus associations that characterize attine ant agriculture.

  2. Microbial symbionts shape the sterol profile of the xylem-feeding woodwasp, Sirex noctilio.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Brian M; Grebenok, Robert J; Behmer, Spencer T; Gruner, Daniel S

    2013-01-01

    The symbiotic fungus Amylostereum areolatum is essential for growth and development of larvae of the invasive woodwasp, Sirex noctilio. In the nutrient poor xylem of pine trees, upon which Sirex feeds, it is unknown whether Amylostereum facilitates survival directly through consumption (mycetophagy) and/or indirectly through digestion of recalcitrant plant polymers (external rumen hypothesis). We tested these alternative hypotheses for Amylostereum involvement in Sirex foraging using the innate dependency of all insects on dietary sources of sterol and the unique sterols indicative of fungi and plants. We tested alternative hypotheses by using GC-MS to quantify concentrations of free and bound sterol pools from multiple life-stages of Sirex, food sources, and waste products in red pine (Pinus resinosa). Cholesterol was the primary sterol found in all life-stages of Sirex. However, cholesterol was not found in significant quantities in either plant or fungal resources. Ergosterol was the most prevalent sterol in Amylostereum but was not detectable in either wood or insect tissue (importance for fungal enzymes, including the external digestion of recalcitrant plant polymers (e.g., lignin and cellulose), shaping this insect-fungal symbiosis.

  3. A novel test for host-symbiont codivergence indicates ancient origin of fungal endophytes in grasses

    CERN Document Server

    Schardl, Chris L; Lindstrom, Adam; Speakman, Skyler; Stromberg, Arnold; Yoshida, Ruriko

    2007-01-01

    Significant phylogenetic codivergence between plant or animal hosts ($H$) and their symbionts or parasites ($P$) indicate the importance of their interactions on evolutionary time scales. However, valid and realistic methods to test for codivergence are not fully developed. One of the systems where possible codivergence has been of interest involves the large subfamily of temperate grasses (Pooideae) and their endophytic fungi (epichloae). These widespread symbioses often help protect host plants from herbivory and stresses, and affect species diversity and food web structures. Here we introduce the MRCALink (most-recent-common-ancestor link) method and use it to investigate the possibility of grass-epichlo\\"e codivergence. MRCALink applied to ultrametric $H$ and $P$ trees identifies all corresponding nodes for pairwise comparisons of MRCA ages. The result is compared to the space of random $H$ and $P$ tree pairs estimated by a Monte Carlo method.

  4. Strong fungal specificity and selectivity for algal symbionts in Florida scrub Cladonia lichens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yahr, Rebecca; Vilgalys, Rytas; Depriest, Paula T

    2004-11-01

    Symbiosis is a major theme in the history of life and can be an important force driving evolution. However, across symbioses, it is difficult to tease apart the mechanisms that structure the interactions among potential partners. We used genetic similarity and frequency-based methods to qualitatively and quantitatively examine the patterns of association among several co-occurring Cladonia lichen fungi and their algal photobionts in six disjunct Florida scrub sites. The patterns of association were described by the degree of specificity, i.e. the phylogenetic range of associated partners, and of selectivity, i.e. the frequency of association among partners. Six fungal species associated with only one algal internal transcribed spacer clade, with the remaining two fungi being associated with two algal clades. In all cases, the fungi associated in unequal frequencies with the observed algal photobiont genotypes within those clades--suggesting that both specificity and selectivity were higher than expected. Fungal species can be grouped into three significantly different specificity classes: photobiont specialists, intermediates and generalists. In contrast to the pronounced specificity for photobionts among fungal species, the different Florida scrub sites do not harbour distinct photobiont pools, and differential photobiont availability cannot explain the patterning of lichen associations at this spatial scale. Therefore, we conclude that fungal specificity and selectivity for algal photobionts are major factors in determining the local composition of symbiotic partnerships.

  5. Plant-ants feed their host plant, but above all a fungal symbiont to recycle nitrogen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Defossez, Emmanuel; Djiéto-Lordon, Champlain; McKey, Doyle; Selosse, Marc-André; Blatrix, Rumsaïs

    2011-05-07

    In ant-plant symbioses, plants provide symbiotic ants with food and specialized nesting cavities (called domatia). In many ant-plant symbioses, a fungal patch grows within each domatium. The symbiotic nature of the fungal association has been shown in the ant-plant Leonardoxa africana and its protective mutualist ant Petalomyrmex phylax. To decipher trophic fluxes among the three partners, food enriched in (13)C and (15)N was given to the ants and tracked in the different parts of the symbiosis up to 660 days later. The plant received a small, but significant, amount of nitrogen from the ants. However, the ants fed more intensively the fungus. The pattern of isotope enrichment in the system indicated an ant behaviour that functions specifically to feed the fungus. After 660 days, the introduced nitrogen was still present in the system and homogeneously distributed among ant, plant and fungal compartments, indicating efficient recycling within the symbiosis. Another experiment showed that the plant surface absorbed nutrients (in the form of simple molecules) whether or not it is coated by fungus. Our study provides arguments for a mutualistic status of the fungal associate and a framework for investigating the previously unsuspected complexity of food webs in ant-plant mutualisms.

  6. Presence of Aspergillus and other fungal symbionts in coffee beans from Colombia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gamboa-Gaitán Miguel Ángel

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Fungi are common inhabitants of plants and plant-derived products. Some of these fungal species are potentially dangerous to human health since they are able to produce chemical substances that alter normal physiological activity. There are no studies about natural mycoflora associated with coffee beans in Colombia, and nothing is known about the presence and abundance of toxigenic fungal species in Colombian coffee. In this study 5,000 coffee beans were studied by plating them on potato-based artificial culture medium and it was shown that potentially toxigenic fungal taxa (mostly from genera Aspergillus, Fusarium, Penicillium, are currently found in Colombian coffee beans. This is true for all steps of coffee processing, from berries in trees to toasted grains, including packed coffee ready for retail in supermarkets. Results show that the distribution of these fungi is not random among different steps of coffee processing, which means that some steps are more vulnerable to infection with some fungi that others. The convenience of establishing a program devoted to detect fungi and/or mycotoxins in Colombian commodities, specially coffee, is discussed here.

  7. A fungal symbiont of plant-roots modulates mycotoxin gene expression in the pathogen Fusarium sambucinum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Youssef Ismail

    Full Text Available Fusarium trichothecenes are fungal toxins that cause disease on infected plants and, more importantly, health problems for humans and animals that consume infected fruits or vegetables. Unfortunately, there are few methods for controlling mycotoxin production by fungal pathogens. In this study, we isolated and characterized sixteen Fusarium strains from naturally infected potato plants in the field. Pathogenicity tests were carried out in the greenhouse to evaluate the virulence of the strains on potato plants as well as their trichothecene production capacity, and the most aggressive strain was selected for further studies. This strain, identified as F. sambucinum, was used to determine if trichothecene gene expression was affected by the symbiotic Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus (AMF Glomus irregulare. AMF form symbioses with plant roots, in particular by improving their mineral nutrient uptake and protecting plants against soil-borne pathogens. We found that that G. irregulare significantly inhibits F. sambucinum growth. We also found, using RT-PCR assays to assess the relative expression of trichothecene genes, that in the presence of the AMF G. irregulare, F. sambucinum genes TRI5 and TRI6 were up-regulated, while TRI4, TRI13 and TRI101 were down-regulated. We conclude that AMF can modulate mycotoxin gene expression by a plant fungal pathogen. This previously undescribed effect may be an important mechanism for biological control and has fascinating implications for advancing our knowledge of plant-microbe interactions and controlling plant pathogens.

  8. A fungal symbiont of plant-roots modulates mycotoxin gene expression in the pathogen Fusarium sambucinum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ismail, Youssef; McCormick, Susan; Hijri, Mohamed

    2011-03-24

    Fusarium trichothecenes are fungal toxins that cause disease on infected plants and, more importantly, health problems for humans and animals that consume infected fruits or vegetables. Unfortunately, there are few methods for controlling mycotoxin production by fungal pathogens. In this study, we isolated and characterized sixteen Fusarium strains from naturally infected potato plants in the field. Pathogenicity tests were carried out in the greenhouse to evaluate the virulence of the strains on potato plants as well as their trichothecene production capacity, and the most aggressive strain was selected for further studies. This strain, identified as F. sambucinum, was used to determine if trichothecene gene expression was affected by the symbiotic Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus (AMF) Glomus irregulare. AMF form symbioses with plant roots, in particular by improving their mineral nutrient uptake and protecting plants against soil-borne pathogens. We found that that G. irregulare significantly inhibits F. sambucinum growth. We also found, using RT-PCR assays to assess the relative expression of trichothecene genes, that in the presence of the AMF G. irregulare, F. sambucinum genes TRI5 and TRI6 were up-regulated, while TRI4, TRI13 and TRI101 were down-regulated. We conclude that AMF can modulate mycotoxin gene expression by a plant fungal pathogen. This previously undescribed effect may be an important mechanism for biological control and has fascinating implications for advancing our knowledge of plant-microbe interactions and controlling plant pathogens.

  9. Free-living fungal symbionts (Lepiotaceae) of fungus-growing ants (Attini: Formicidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vo, Tanya L; Mueller, Ulrich G; Mikheyev, Alexander S

    2009-01-01

    Surveys of leucocoprinaceous fungi (Lepiotaceae, Agaricales, Basidiomycota) in the rainforests of Panama and Brazil revealed several free-living counterparts of fungi cultivated by primitive attine ants (the lower Attini, Formicidae, Hymenoptera), adding to two such collections identified in a survey by Mueller et al (1998). The accumulated evidence supports the hypothesis that perhaps all fungi of lower attine ants have close free-living relatives. Free-living counterparts of ant-cultivated fungi are collected most readily during the early rainy season; in particular these are free-living mushrooms of fungal counterparts that are cultivated as yeasts in gardens of ants in the Cyphomyrmex rimosus group. Free-living and symbiotic fungi of these yeast-cultivating ant species might represent a promising study system to compare the biology of sympatric, conspecific fungi existing outside versus inside the attine symbiosis.

  10. Towards a molecular understanding of symbiont function: Identification of a fungal gene for the degradation of xylan in the fungus gardens of leaf-cutting ants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lange Lene

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Leaf-cutting ants live in symbiosis with a fungus that they rear for food by providing it with live plant material. Until recently the fungus' main inferred function was to make otherwise inaccessible cell wall degradation products available to the ants, but new studies have shed doubt on this idea. To provide evidence for the cell wall degrading capacity of the attine ant symbiont, we designed PCR primers from conserved regions of known xylanase genes, to be used in PCR with genomic DNA from the symbiont as template. We also measured xylanase, cellulase and proteinase activities in the fungus gardens in order to investigate the dynamics of degradation activities. Results We cloned a xylanase gene from the mutualistic fungus of Acromyrmex echinatior, determined its protein sequence, and inserted it in a yeast expression vector to confirm its substrate specificity. Our results show that the fungus has a functional xylanase gene. We also show by lab experiments in vivo that the activity of fungal xylanase and cellulase is not evenly distributed, but concentrated in the lower layer of fungus gardens, with only modest activity in the middle layer where gongylidia are produced and intermediate activity in the newly established top layer. This vertical distribution appears to be negatively correlated with the concentration of glucose, which indicates a directly regulating role of glucose, as has been found in other fungi and has been previously suggested for the ant fungal symbiont. Conclusion The mutualistic fungus of Acromyrmex echinatior has a functional xylanase gene and is thus presumably able to at least partially degrade the cell walls of leaves. This finding supports a saprotrophic origin of the fungal symbiont. The observed distribution of enzyme activity leads us to propose that leaf-substrate degradation in fungus gardens is a multi-step process comparable to normal biodegradation of organic matter in soil ecosystems

  11. The influence of Amylostereum areolatum diversity and competitive interations on the fitness of the Sirex parasitic nematode Deladenus siricidicola

    Science.gov (United States)

    B.P. Hurley; H.J. Hatting; M.J. Wingfield; Kier Klepzig; B. Slippers

    2012-01-01

    The Sirex noctilio (woodwasp - Amylostereum areolatum (fungus) complex has caused substantial losses to pine industries in its introduced range. The nematode Deladenus siricidicola that parasitizes S. noctilio and feeds on A. areolatum is widely used as a biological control...

  12. Plant Host Species and Geographic Distance Affect the Structure of Aboveground Fungal Symbiont Communities, and Environmental Filtering Affects Belowground Communities in a Coastal Dune Ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    David, Aaron S; Seabloom, Eric W; May, Georgiana

    2016-05-01

    Microbial symbionts inhabit tissues of all plants and animals. Their community composition depends largely on two ecological processes: (1) filtering by abiotic conditions and host species determining the environments that symbionts are able to colonize and (2) dispersal-limitation determining the pool of symbionts available to colonize a given host and community spatial structure. In plants, the above- and belowground tissues represent such distinct habitats for symbionts that we expect different effects of filtering and spatial structuring on their symbiont communities. In this study, we characterized above- and belowground communities of fungal endophytes--fungi living asymptomatically within plants--to understand the contributions of filtering and spatial structure to endophyte community composition. We used a culture-based approach to characterize endophytes growing in leaves and roots of three species of coastal beachgrasses in dunes of the USA Pacific Northwest. For leaves, endophyte isolation frequency and OTU richness depended primarily on plant host species. In comparison, for roots, both isolation frequency and OTU richness increased from the nutrient-poor front of the dune to the higher-nutrient backdune. Endophyte community composition in leaves exhibited a distance-decay relationship across the region. In a laboratory assay, faster growth rates and lower spore production were more often associated with leaf- than root-inhabiting endophytes. Overall, our results reveal a greater importance of biotic filtering by host species and dispersal-limitation over regional geographic distances for aboveground leaf endophyte communities and stronger effects of abiotic environmental filtering and locally patchy distributions for belowground root endophyte communities.

  13. Towards a molecular understanding of symbiont function: identification of a fungal gene for the degradation of xylan in the fungus gardens of leaf-cutting ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schiøtt, Morten; De Fine Licht, Henrik H; Lange, Lene;

    2008-01-01

    in the fungus gardens in order to investigate the dynamics of degradation activities. RESULTS: We cloned a xylanase gene from the mutualistic fungus of Acromyrmex echinatior, determined its protein sequence, and inserted it in a yeast expression vector to confirm its substrate specificity. Our results show...... that the fungus has a functional xylanase gene. We also show by lab experiments in vivo that the activity of fungal xylanase and cellulase is not evenly distributed, but concentrated in the lower layer of fungus gardens, with only modest activity in the middle layer where gongylidia are produced and intermediate...... activity in the newly established top layer. This vertical distribution appears to be negatively correlated with the concentration of glucose, which indicates a directly regulating role of glucose, as has been found in other fungi and has been previously suggested for the ant fungal symbiont. CONCLUSION...

  14. A Brazilian population of the asexual fungus-growing ant Mycocepurus smithii (Formicidae, Myrmicinae, Attini) cultivates fungal symbionts with gongylidia-like structures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masiulionis, Virginia E; Rabeling, Christian; De Fine Licht, Henrik H; Schultz, Ted; Bacci, Maurício; Bezerra, Cintia M Santos; Pagnocca, Fernando C

    2014-01-01

    Attine ants cultivate fungi as their most important food source and in turn the fungus is nourished, protected against harmful microorganisms, and dispersed by the ants. This symbiosis evolved approximately 50-60 million years ago in the late Paleocene or early Eocene, and since its origin attine ants have acquired a variety of fungal mutualists in the Leucocoprineae and the distantly related Pterulaceae. The most specialized symbiotic interaction is referred to as "higher agriculture" and includes leafcutter ant agriculture in which the ants cultivate the single species Leucoagaricus gongylophorus. Higher agriculture fungal cultivars are characterized by specialized hyphal tip swellings, so-called gongylidia, which are considered a unique, derived morphological adaptation of higher attine fungi thought to be absent in lower attine fungi. Rare reports of gongylidia-like structures in fungus gardens of lower attines exist, but it was never tested whether these represent rare switches of lower attines to L. gonglyphorus cultivars or whether lower attine cultivars occasionally produce gongylidia. Here we describe the occurrence of gongylidia-like structures in fungus gardens of the asexual lower attine ant Mycocepurus smithii. To test whether M. smithii cultivates leafcutter ant fungi or whether lower attine cultivars produce gongylidia, we identified the M. smithii fungus utilizing molecular and morphological methods. Results shows that the gongylidia-like structures of M. smithii gardens are morphologically similar to gongylidia of higher attine fungus gardens and can only be distinguished by their slightly smaller size. A molecular phylogenetic analysis of the fungal ITS sequence indicates that the gongylidia-bearing M. smithii cultivar belongs to the so-called "Clade 1"of lower Attini cultivars. Given that M. smithii is capable of cultivating a morphologically and genetically diverse array of fungal symbionts, we discuss whether asexuality of the ant host maybe

  15. [Organization and preservation of the collection of pathogenic and fungal symbionts of insects and other arthropods from CEPAVE (CONICET-UNLP), La Plata, Argentina].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutierrez, Alejandra Concepción; Tornesello-Galván, Julieta; Manfrino, Romina Guadalupe; Hipperdinger, Marcela; Falvo, Marianel; D'Alessandro, Celeste; López Lastra, Claudia Cristina

    The collection of fungal pathogens and symbionts of insects and other arthropods of the Centro de Estudios Parasitológicos y de Vectores, La Plata, Argentina, is unique because it preserves in vivo and in vitro cultures of fungal pathogens. This culture collection is open for research, teaching, consulting services, and strain deposit. It contains 421 strains belonging to 23 genera (16 Ascomycota, 4 Entomophthoromycotina, 2 Glomeromycota and 1 Oomycota), and the cultures are preserved by different methods such as cryopreservation in freezer at -20°C and -70°C, paper, distilled water and lyophilization. Fungi were isolated from insects, other arthropods, and soil (by using insect baits and selective media). Species were identified by morphological features and in a few strains by molecular taxonomy (PCR of rDNA). This collection is a reference center for species identification/certifications, research and teaching purposes, strain deposit, transference and consultancy services, and its overall goal is to preserve the fungal germplasm and ex situ diversity. Most of the strains are native of Argentina. The collection was originated in 1988 and is registered in the Latin American Federation for Culture Collections and in the World Federation of Culture Collections. Copyright © 2016 Asociación Argentina de Microbiología. Publicado por Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  16. Metabolite analysis of the effects of elevated CO2 and nitrogen fertilization on the association between tall fescue (Schedonorus arundinaceus) and its fungal symbiont Neotyphodium coenophialum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryan, Geraldine D; Rasmussen, Susanne; Xue, Hong; Parsons, Anthony J; Newman, Jonathan A

    2014-01-01

    Atmospheric CO2 is expected to increase to between 550 ppm and 1000 ppm in the next century. CO2-induced changes in plant physiology can have ecosystem-wide implications and may alter plant-plant, plant-herbivore and plant-symbiont interactions. We examined the effects of three concentrations of CO2 (390, 800 and 1000 ppm) and two concentrations of nitrogen fertilizer (0.004 g N/week versus 0.2 g N/week) on the physiological response of Neotyphodium fungal endophyte-infected and uninfected tall fescue plants. We used quantitative PCR to estimate the concentration of endophyte under altered CO2 and N conditions. We found that elevated CO2 increased the concentration of water-soluble carbohydrates and decreased the concentration of plant total amino acids in plants. Fungal-derived alkaloids decreased in response to elevated CO2 and increased in response to nitrogen fertilization. Endophyte concentration (expressed as the number of copies of an endophyte-specific gene per total genomic DNA) increased under elevated CO2 and nitrogen fertilization. The correlation between endophyte concentration and alkaloid production observed at ambient conditions was not observed under elevated CO2. These results suggest that nutrient exchange dynamics important for maintaining the symbiotic relationship between fungal endophytes and their grass hosts may be altered by changes in environmental variables such as CO2 and nitrogen fertilization.

  17. The fungal symbiont of Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants expresses the full spectrum of genes to degrade cellulose and other plant cell wall polysaccharides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grell, Morten N; Linde, Tore; Nygaard, Sanne; Nielsen, Kåre L; Boomsma, Jacobus J; Lange, Lene

    2013-12-28

    The fungus gardens of leaf-cutting ants are natural biomass conversion systems that turn fresh plant forage into fungal biomass to feed the farming ants. However, the decomposition potential of the symbiont Leucocoprinus gongylophorus for processing polysaccharides has remained controversial. We therefore used quantifiable DeepSAGE technology to obtain mRNA expression patterns of genes coding for secreted enzymes from top, middle, and bottom sections of a laboratory fungus-garden of Acromyrmex echinatior leaf-cutting ants. A broad spectrum of biomass-conversion-relevant enzyme genes was found to be expressed in situ: cellulases (GH3, GH5, GH6, GH7, AA9 [formerly GH61]), hemicellulases (GH5, GH10, CE1, GH12, GH74), pectinolytic enzymes (CE8, GH28, GH43, PL1, PL3, PL4), glucoamylase (GH15), α-galactosidase (GH27), and various cutinases, esterases, and lipases. In general, expression of these genes reached maximal values in the bottom section of the garden, particularly for an AA9 lytic polysaccharide monooxygenase and for a GH5 (endocellulase), a GH7 (reducing end-acting cellobiohydrolase), and a GH10 (xylanase), all containing a carbohydrate binding module that specifically binds cellulose (CBM1). Although we did not directly quantify enzyme abundance, the profile of expressed cellulase genes indicates that both hydrolytic and oxidative degradation is taking place. The fungal symbiont of Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants can degrade a large range of plant polymers, but the conversion of cellulose, hemicellulose, and part of the pectin occurs primarily towards the end of the decomposition process, i.e. in the bottom section of the fungus garden. These conversions are likely to provide nutrients for the fungus itself rather than for the ants, whose colony growth and reproductive success are limited by proteins obtained from ingesting fungal gongylidia. These specialized hyphal tips are hardly produced in the bottom section of fungus gardens, consistent with the ants

  18. Enrichment and Broad Representation of Plant Biomass-Degrading Enzymes in the Specialized Hyphal Swellings of Leucoagaricus gongylophorus, the Fungal Symbiont of Leaf-Cutter Ants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Aylward, Frank O.; Khadempour, Lily; Tremmel, Daniel; McDonald, Bradon R.; Nicora, Carrie D.; Wu, Si; Moore, Ronald J.; Orton, Daniel J.; Monroe, Matthew E.; Piehowski, Paul D.; Purvine, Samuel O.; Smith, Richard D.; Lipton, Mary S.; Burnum-Johnson, Kristin E.; Currie, Cameron R.

    2015-08-28

    Leaf-cutter ants are prolific and conspicuous Neotropical herbivores that derive energy from specialized fungus gardens they cultivate using foliar biomass. The basidiomycetous cultivar of the ants, Leucoagaricus gongylophorus, produces specialized hyphal swellings called gongylidia that serve as the primary food source of ant colonies. Gongylidia also contain lignocellulases that become concentrated in ant digestive tracts and are deposited within fecal droplets onto fresh foliar material as it is foraged by the ants. Although the enzymes concentrated by L. gongylophorus within gongylidia are thought to be critical to the initial degradation of plant biomass, only a few enzymes present in these hyphal swellings have been identified. Here we use proteomic methods to identify proteins present in the gongylidia of three Atta cephalotes colonies. Our results demonstrate that a diverse but consistent set of enzymes is present in gongylidia, including numerous lignocellulases likely involved in the degradation of polysaccharides, plant toxins, and proteins. Overall, gongylidia contained over three-quarters of all lignocellulases identified in the L. gongylophorus genome, demonstrating that the majority of the enzymes produced by this fungus for biomass breakdown are ingested by the ants. We also identify a set of 23 lignocellulases enriched in gongylidia compared to whole fungus garden samples, suggesting that certain enzymes may be particularly important in the initial degradation of foliar material. Our work sheds light on the complex interplay between leaf-cutter ants and their fungal symbiont that allows for the host insects to occupy an herbivorous niche by indirectly deriving energy from plant biomass.

  19. Evolution of cold-tolerant fungal symbionts permits winter fungiculture by leafcutter ants at the northern frontier of a tropical ant-fungus symbiosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Ulrich G; Mikheyev, Alexander S; Hong, Eunki; Sen, Ruchira; Warren, Dan L; Solomon, Scott E; Ishak, Heather D; Cooper, Mike; Miller, Jessica L; Shaffer, Kimberly A; Juenger, Thomas E

    2011-03-08

    The obligate mutualism between leafcutter ants and their Attamyces fungi originated 8 to 12 million years ago in the tropics, but extends today also into temperate regions in South and North America. The northernmost leafcutter ant Atta texana sustains fungiculture during winter temperatures that would harm the cold-sensitive Attamyces cultivars of tropical leafcutter ants. Cold-tolerance of Attamyces cultivars increases with winter harshness along a south-to-north temperature gradient across the range of A. texana, indicating selection for cold-tolerant Attamyces variants along the temperature cline. Ecological niche modeling corroborates winter temperature as a key range-limiting factor impeding northward expansion of A. texana. The northernmost A. texana populations are able to sustain fungiculture throughout winter because of their cold-adapted fungi and because of seasonal, vertical garden relocation (maintaining gardens deep in the ground in winter to protect them from extreme cold, then moving gardens to warmer, shallow depths in spring). Although the origin of leafcutter fungiculture was an evolutionary breakthrough that revolutionized the food niche of tropical fungus-growing ants, the original adaptations of this host-microbe symbiosis to tropical temperatures and the dependence on cold-sensitive fungal symbionts eventually constrained expansion into temperate habitats. Evolution of cold-tolerant fungi within the symbiosis relaxed constraints on winter fungiculture at the northern frontier of the leafcutter ant distribution, thereby expanding the ecological niche of an obligate host-microbe symbiosis.

  20. Impacts of simulated climate change and fungal symbionts on survival and growth of a foundation species in sand dunes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emery, Sarah M; Rudgers, Jennifer A

    2013-12-01

    For many ecosystems, one of the primary avenues of climate impact may be through changes to foundation species, which create habitats and sustain ecosystem services. For plants, microbial symbionts can often act as mutualists under abiotic stress and may mediate foundational plant responses to climate change. We manipulated the presence of endophytes in Ammophila breviligulata, a foundational sand dune species, to evaluate their potential to influence plant responses to climate change. We simulated projected climate change scenarios for temperature and precipitation using a growth chamber experiment. A 5 °C increase in temperature relative to current climate in northern Michigan reduced A. breviligulata survival by 45 %. Root biomass of A. breviligulata, which is critical to dune stabilization, was also strongly reduced by temperature. Plants inoculated with the endophyte had 14 % higher survival than endophyte-free plants. Contrary to our prediction, endophyte symbiosis did not alter the magnitude or direction of the effects of climate manipulations on A. breviligulata survival. However, in the absence of the endophyte, an increase in temperature increased the number of sand grains bound by roots by 80 %, while in symbiotic plants sand adherence did not significantly respond to temperature. Thus, plant-endophyte symbiosis actually negated the benefits in ecosystem function gained under a warmer climate. This study suggests that heat stress related to climate change in the Great Lakes may compromise the ability of A. breviligulata to stabilize dune ecosystems and reduce carbon storage and organic matter build-up in these early-successional systems due to reduced plant survival and root growth.

  1. Fungal endophytes in aboveground tissues of desert plants: infrequent in culture, but highly diverse and distinctive symbionts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Massimo, Nicholas C; Nandi Devan, M M; Arendt, Kayla R; Wilch, Margaret H; Riddle, Jakob M; Furr, Susan H; Steen, Cole; U'Ren, Jana M; Sandberg, Dustin C; Arnold, A Elizabeth

    2015-07-01

    In hot deserts, plants cope with aridity, high temperatures, and nutrient-poor soils with morphological and biochemical adaptations that encompass intimate microbial symbioses. Whereas the root microbiomes of arid-land plants have received increasing attention, factors influencing assemblages of symbionts in aboveground tissues have not been evaluated for many woody plants that flourish in desert environments. We evaluated the diversity, host affiliations, and distributions of endophytic fungi associated with photosynthetic tissues of desert trees and shrubs, focusing on nonsucculent woody plants in the species-rich Sonoran Desert. To inform our strength of inference, we evaluated the effects of two different nutrient media, incubation temperatures, and collection seasons on the apparent structure of endophyte assemblages. Analysis of >22,000 tissue segments revealed that endophytes were isolated four times more frequently from photosynthetic stems than leaves. Isolation frequency was lower than expected given the latitude of the study region and varied among species a function of sampling site and abiotic factors. However, endophytes were very species-rich and phylogenetically diverse, consistent with less arid sites of a similar latitudinal position. Community composition differed among host species, but not as a function of tissue type, sampling site, sampling month, or exposure. Estimates of abundance, diversity, and composition were not influenced by isolation medium or incubation temperature. Phylogenetic analyses of the most commonly isolated genus (Preussia) revealed multiple evolutionary origins of desert-plant endophytism and little phylogenetic structure with regard to seasonality, tissue preference, or optimal temperatures and nutrients for growth in vitro. Together, these results provide insight into endophytic symbioses in desert-plant communities and can be used to optimize strategies for capturing endophyte biodiversity at regional scales.

  2. Redox regulation of an AP-1-like transcription factor, YapA, in the fungal symbiont Epichloe festucae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cartwright, Gemma M; Scott, Barry

    2013-10-01

    One of the central regulators of oxidative stress in Saccharomyces cerevisiae is Yap1, a bZIP transcription factor of the AP-1 family. In unstressed cells, Yap1 is reduced and cytoplasmic, but in response to oxidative stress, it becomes oxidized and accumulates in the nucleus. To date, there have been no reports on the role of AP-1-like transcription factors in symbiotic fungi. An ortholog of Yap1, named YapA, was identified in the genome of the grass symbiont Epichloë festucae and shown to complement an S. cerevisiae Δyap1 mutant. Hyphae of the E. festucae ΔyapA strain were sensitive to menadione and diamide but resistant to H2O2, KO2, and tert-butyl hydroperoxide (t-BOOH). In contrast, conidia of the ΔyapA strain were very sensitive to H2O2 and failed to germinate. Using a PcatA-eGFP degron-tagged reporter, YapA was shown to be required for expression of a spore-specific catalase gene, catA. Although YapA-EGFP localized to the nucleus in response to host reactive oxygen species during seedling infection, there was no difference in whole-plant and cellular phenotypes of plants infected with the ΔyapA strain compared to the wild-type strain. Homologs of the S. cerevisiae and Schizosaccharomyces pombe redox-sensing proteins (Gpx3 and Tpx1, respectively) did not act as redox sensors for YapA in E. festucae. In response to oxidative stress, YapA-EGFP localized to the nuclei of E. festucae ΔgpxC, ΔtpxA, and ΔgpxC ΔtpxA cells to the same degree as that in wild-type cells. These results show that E. festucae has a robust system for countering oxidative stress in culture and in planta but that Gpx3- or Tpx1-like thiol peroxidases are dispensable for activation of YapA.

  3. Enrichment and Broad Representation of Plant Biomass-Degrading Enzymes in the Specialized Hyphal Swellings of Leucoagaricus gongylophorus, the Fungal Symbiont of Leaf-Cutter Ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aylward, Frank O; Khadempour, Lily; Tremmel, Daniel M; McDonald, Bradon R; Nicora, Carrie D; Wu, Si; Moore, Ronald J; Orton, Daniel J; Monroe, Matthew E; Piehowski, Paul D; Purvine, Samuel O; Smith, Richard D; Lipton, Mary S; Burnum-Johnson, Kristin E; Currie, Cameron R

    2015-01-01

    Leaf-cutter ants are prolific and conspicuous constituents of Neotropical ecosystems that derive energy from specialized fungus gardens they cultivate using prodigious amounts of foliar biomass. The basidiomycetous cultivar of the ants, Leucoagaricus gongylophorus, produces specialized hyphal swellings called gongylidia that serve as the primary food source of ant colonies. Gongylidia also contain plant biomass-degrading enzymes that become concentrated in ant digestive tracts and are deposited within fecal droplets onto fresh foliar material as ants incorporate it into the fungus garden. Although the enzymes concentrated by L. gongylophorus within gongylidia are thought to be critical to the initial degradation of plant biomass, only a few enzymes present in these hyphal swellings have been identified. Here we use proteomic methods to identify proteins present in the gongylidia of three Atta cephalotes colonies. Our results demonstrate that a diverse but consistent set of enzymes is present in gongylidia, including numerous plant biomass-degrading enzymes likely involved in the degradation of polysaccharides, plant toxins, and proteins. Overall, gongylidia contained over three quarters of all biomass-degrading enzymes identified in the L. gongylophorus genome, demonstrating that the majority of the enzymes produced by this fungus for biomass breakdown are ingested by the ants. We also identify a set of 40 of these enzymes enriched in gongylidia compared to whole fungus garden samples, suggesting that certain enzymes may be particularly important in the initial degradation of foliar material. Our work sheds light on the complex interplay between leaf-cutter ants and their fungal symbiont that allows for the host insects to occupy an herbivorous niche by indirectly deriving energy from plant biomass.

  4. Exploring symbiont management in lichens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grube, Martin; Spribille, Toby

    2012-07-01

    Lichens are unique among fungal symbioses in that their mycelial structures are compact and exposed to the light as thallus structures. The myriad intersections of unique fungal species with photosynthetic partner organisms (green algae in 90% of lichens) produce a wide variety of diverse shapes and colours of the fully synthesized lichen thallus when growing in nature. This characteristic complex morphology is, however, not achieved in the fungal axenic state. Even under ideal environmental conditions, the lichen life cycle faces considerable odds: first, meiotic spores are only produced on well-established thalli and often only after achieving considerable age in a stable environment, and second, even then in vivo resynthesis requires the presence of compatible algal strains where fungal spores germinate. Many lichen species have evolved a way around the resynthesis bottleneck by producing asexual propagules for joint propagation of symbionts. These different dispersal strategies ostensibly shape the population genetic structure of lichen symbioses, but the relative contributions of vertical (joint) and horizontal (independent) symbiont transmission have long eluded lichen evolutionary biologists. In this issue of Molecular Ecology, Dal Grande et al. (2012) close in on this question with the lung lichen, Lobaria pulmonaria, a flagship species in the conservation of old growth forests. By capitalizing on available microsatellite markers for both fungal and algal symbionts, they show that while vertical transmission is the predominant mode of reproduction, horizontal transmission is demonstrable and actively shapes population genetic structure. The resulting mixed propagation system is a highly successful balance of safe recruitment of symbiotic clones and endless possibilities for fungal recombination and symbiont shuffling.

  5. A Brazilian Population of the Asexual Fungus-Growing Ant Mycocepurus smithii (Formicidae, Myrmicinae, Attini) Cultivates Fungal Symbionts with Gongylidia-Like Structures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Masiulionis, Virginia E.; Rabeling, Christian; de Fine Licht, Henrik Hjarvard;

    2014-01-01

    gongylophorus. Higher agriculture fungal cultivars are characterized by specialized hyphal tip swellings, so-called gongylidia, which are considered a unique, derived morphological adaptation of higher attine fungi thought to be absent in lower attine fungi. Rare reports of gongylidia-like structures in fungus...

  6. Interactions among symbionts operate across scales to influence parasite epidemics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halliday, Fletcher W; Umbanhowar, James; Mitchell, Charles E

    2017-10-01

    Parasite epidemics may be influenced by interactions among symbionts, which can depend on past events at multiple spatial scales. Within host individuals, interactions can depend on the sequence in which symbionts infect a host, generating priority effects. Across host individuals, interactions can depend on parasite phenology. To test the roles of parasite interactions and phenology in epidemics, we embedded multiple cohorts of sentinel plants, grown from seeds with and without a vertically transmitted symbiont, into a wild host population, and tracked foliar infections caused by three common fungal parasites. Within hosts, parasite growth was influenced by coinfections, but coinfections were often prevented by priority effects among symbionts. Across hosts, parasite phenology altered host susceptibility to secondary infections, symbiont interactions and ultimately the magnitude of parasite epidemics. Together, these results indicate that parasite phenology can influence parasite epidemics by altering the sequence of infection and interactions among symbionts within host individuals. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  7. Fungal Adaptations to Mutualistic Life with Ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kooij, Pepijn Wilhelmus

    . However, in rare occasions fungal symbionts might come into contact with symbionts from other colonies. I showed that in both leaf-cutting ant genera incompatibility reactions between fungal strains can avoid intermixing of different strains, and that these reactions strengthen when genetic distance...... successful. To understand the evolutionary development of domestication of the fungus over the phylogeny of the Attine ants, I compared the average number of nuclei per cell for the fungal symbionts, for each of the different groups of fungus-growing ants. I found that the fungal symbionts of the paleo...... is increased. This pattern, however, becomes distorted when fungal symbionts are contested across ant genera. The most important mechanism in the succession of this mutualism of leaf-cutting ants is the controlled degradation of plant material. I show that in the area of Gamboa, Panama, the two leaf...

  8. A Brazilian Population of the Asexual Fungus-Growing Ant Mycocepurus smithii (Formicidae, Myrmicinae, Attini) Cultivates Fungal Symbionts with Gongylidia-Like Structures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Masiulionis, Virginia E.; Rabeling, Christian; de Fine Licht, Henrik Hjarvard

    2014-01-01

    Attine ants cultivate fungi as their most important food source and in turn the fungus is nourished, protected against harmful microorganisms, and dispersed by the ants. This symbiosis evolved approximately 50–60 million years ago in the late Paleocene or early Eocene, and since its origin attine...... gongylophorus. Higher agriculture fungal cultivars are characterized by specialized hyphal tip swellings, so-called gongylidia, which are considered a unique, derived morphological adaptation of higher attine fungi thought to be absent in lower attine fungi. Rare reports of gongylidia-like structures in fungus...... lower attine ant Mycocepurus smithii. To test whether M. smithii cultivates leafcutter ant fungi or whether lower attine cultivars produce gongylidia, we identified the M. smithii fungus utilizing molecular and morphological methods. Results shows that the gongylidia-like structures of M. smithii...

  9. 内生真菌-禾草共生体内生物碱的种类及其生理生态作用%TYPES OF ALKALOIDS IN FUNGAL ENDOPHYTE-GRASS SYMBIONT AND THEIR ECOPHYSIOLOGICAL ROLE

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    周芳; 高玉葆

    2003-01-01

    In this review, we summarized recent studies on alkaloids in endophyte - grass symbiont, including detection and classification, effects of environmental factors on concentration of the alkaloids, and their ecophysiological role to the plant host. Tab 1, Ref 49

  10. Patterns of interaction specificity of fungus-growing termites and Termitomyces symbionts in South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    de Beer Z Wilhelm

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Termites of the subfamily Macrotermitinae live in a mutualistic symbiosis with basidiomycete fungi of the genus Termitomyces. Here, we explored interaction specificity in fungus-growing termites using samples from 101 colonies in South-Africa and Senegal, belonging to eight species divided over three genera. Knowledge of interaction specificity is important to test the hypothesis that inhabitants (symbionts are taxonomically less diverse than 'exhabitants' (hosts and to test the hypothesis that transmission mode is an important determinant for interaction specificity. Results Analysis of Molecular Variance among symbiont ITS sequences across termite hosts at three hierarchical levels showed that 47 % of the variation occurred between genera, 18 % between species, and the remaining 35 % between colonies within species. Different patterns of specificity were evident. High mutual specificity was found for the single Macrotermes species studied, as M. natalensis was associated with a single unique fungal haplotype. The three species of the genus Odontotermes showed low symbiont specificity: they were all associated with a genetically diverse set of fungal symbionts, but their fungal symbionts showed some host specificity, as none of the fungal haplotypes were shared between the studied Odontotermes species. Finally, bilaterally low specificity was found for the four tentatively recognized species of the genus Microtermes, which shared and apparently freely exchanged a common pool of divergent fungal symbionts. Conclusion Interaction specificity was high at the genus level and generally much lower at the species level. A comparison of the observed diversity among fungal symbionts with the diversity among termite hosts, indicated that the fungal symbiont does not follow the general pattern of an endosymbiont, as we found either similar diversity at both sides or higher diversity in the symbiont. Our results further challenge the

  11. Patterns of interaction specificity of fungus-growing termites and Termitomyces symbionts in South Africa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aanen, Duur K; Ros, Vera I D; de Fine Licht, Henrik H

    2007-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Termites of the subfamily Macrotermitinae live in a mutualistic symbiosis with basidiomycete fungi of the genus Termitomyces. Here, we explored interaction specificity in fungus-growing termites using samples from 101 colonies in South-Africa and Senegal, belonging to eight species......: Analysis of Molecular Variance among symbiont ITS sequences across termite hosts at three hierarchical levels showed that 47 % of the variation occurred between genera, 18 % between species, and the remaining 35 % between colonies within species. Different patterns of specificity were evident. High mutual...... of divergent fungal symbionts. CONCLUSION: Interaction specificity was high at the genus level and generally much lower at the species level. A comparison of the observed diversity among fungal symbionts with the diversity among termite hosts, indicated that the fungal symbiont does not follow the general...

  12. The role of symbiont genetic distance and potential adaptability in host preference towards Pseudonocardia symbionts in Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomas-Poulsen, Michael; Maynard, Janielle; Roland, Damien L.;

    2011-01-01

    ), help defend the ants’ fungal mutualist from specialized parasites. In Acromyrmex Mayr (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) leaf-cutting ants, individual colonies maintain either a single or a few strains of Pseudonocardia, and the symbiont is primarily vertically transmitted between generations by colony...... to the role of adaptive recognition, potential ecological flexibility in symbiont preference, and more broadly, in relation to self versus non-self recognition....

  13. JGI Fungal Genomics Program

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grigoriev, Igor V.

    2011-03-14

    Genomes of energy and environment fungi are in focus of the Fungal Genomic Program at the US Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute (JGI). Its key project, the Genomics Encyclopedia of Fungi, targets fungi related to plant health (symbionts, pathogens, and biocontrol agents) and biorefinery processes (cellulose degradation, sugar fermentation, industrial hosts), and explores fungal diversity by means of genome sequencing and analysis. Over 50 fungal genomes have been sequenced by JGI to date and released through MycoCosm (www.jgi.doe.gov/fungi), a fungal web-portal, which integrates sequence and functional data with genome analysis tools for user community. Sequence analysis supported by functional genomics leads to developing parts list for complex systems ranging from ecosystems of biofuel crops to biorefineries. Recent examples of such 'parts' suggested by comparative genomics and functional analysis in these areas are presented here

  14. Caste-specific symbiont policing by workers of Acromyrmex fungus-growing ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ivens, Aniek B.F.; Nash, David R.; Poulsen, Michael

    2009-01-01

    The interaction between leaf-cutting ants and their fungus garden mutualists is ideal for studying the evolutionary stability of interspecific cooperation. Although the mutualism has a long history of diffuse coevolution, there is ample potential for conflicts between the partners over the mixing...... and transmission of symbionts. Symbiont transmission is vertical by default, and both the ants and resident fungus actively protect the fungal monoculture growing in their nest against secondary introductions of genetically dissimilar symbionts from other colonies. An earlier study showed that mixtures of major...

  15. Caste-specific symbiont policing by workers of Acromyrmex fungus-growing ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ivens, Aniek B.F.; Nash, David R.; Poulsen, Michael;

    2009-01-01

    The interaction between leaf-cutting ants and their fungus garden mutualists is ideal for studying the evolutionary stability of interspecific cooperation. Although the mutualism has a long history of diffuse coevolution, there is ample potential for conflicts between the partners over the mixing...... and transmission of symbionts. Symbiont transmission is vertical by default, and both the ants and resident fungus actively protect the fungal monoculture growing in their nest against secondary introductions of genetically dissimilar symbionts from other colonies. An earlier study showed that mixtures of major...

  16. Population dynamics of defensive symbionts in aphids

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Kerry M Oliver; Jaime Campos; Nancy A Moran; Martha S Hunter

    2008-01-01

    .... While laboratory studies have identified diverse beneficial effects conferred by inherited symbionts of insects, they have not explicitly examined the population dynamics of mutualist symbiont...

  17. Insect symbionts in food webs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henry, Lee M.

    2016-01-01

    Recent research has shown that the bacterial endosymbionts of insects are abundant and diverse, and that they have numerous different effects on their hosts' biology. Here we explore how insect endosymbionts might affect the structure and dynamics of insect communities. Using the obligate and facultative symbionts of aphids as an example, we find that there are multiple ways that symbiont presence might affect food web structure. Many symbionts are now known to help their hosts escape or resist natural enemy attack, and others can allow their hosts to withstand abiotic stress or affect host plant use. In addition to the direct effect of symbionts on aphid phenotypes there may be indirect effects mediated through trophic and non-trophic community interactions. We believe that by using data from barcoding studies to identify bacterial symbionts, this extra, microbial dimension to insect food webs can be better elucidated. This article is part of the themed issue ‘From DNA barcodes to biomes’. PMID:27481779

  18. Fungal Genomics Program

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grigoriev, Igor

    2012-03-12

    The JGI Fungal Genomics Program aims to scale up sequencing and analysis of fungal genomes to explore the diversity of fungi important for energy and the environment, and to promote functional studies on a system level. Combining new sequencing technologies and comparative genomics tools, JGI is now leading the world in fungal genome sequencing and analysis. Over 120 sequenced fungal genomes with analytical tools are available via MycoCosm (www.jgi.doe.gov/fungi), a web-portal for fungal biologists. Our model of interacting with user communities, unique among other sequencing centers, helps organize these communities, improves genome annotation and analysis work, and facilitates new larger-scale genomic projects. This resulted in 20 high-profile papers published in 2011 alone and contributing to the Genomics Encyclopedia of Fungi, which targets fungi related to plant health (symbionts, pathogens, and biocontrol agents) and biorefinery processes (cellulose degradation, sugar fermentation, industrial hosts). Our next grand challenges include larger scale exploration of fungal diversity (1000 fungal genomes), developing molecular tools for DOE-relevant model organisms, and analysis of complex systems and metagenomes.

  19. The role of symbiont genetic distance and potential adaptability in host preference towards Pseudonocardia symbionts in Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomas-Poulsen, Michael; Maynard, Janielle; Roland, Damien L.

    2011-01-01

    ), help defend the ants’ fungal mutualist from specialized parasites. In Acromyrmex Mayr (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) leaf-cutting ants, individual colonies maintain either a single or a few strains of Pseudonocardia, and the symbiont is primarily vertically transmitted between generations by colony...

  20. PRESENCE OF ASPERGILLUS AND OTHER FUNGAL SYMBIONTS IN COFFEE BEANS FROM COLOMBIA Presencia de Aspergillus y otros simbiontes fúngicos en granos de café procedentes de Colombia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MIGUEL ÁNGEL GAMBOA-GAITÁN

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Fungi are common inhabitants of plants and plant-derived products. Some of these fungal species are potentially dangerous to human health since they are able to produce chemical substances that alter normal physiological activity. There are no studies about natural mycoflora associated with coffee beans in Colombia, and nothing is known about the presence and abundance of toxigenic fungal species in Colombian coffee. In this study 5,000 coffee beans were studied by plating them on potato-based artificial culture medium and it was shown that potentially toxigenic fungal taxa (mostly from genera Aspergillus, Fusarium, Penicillium, are currently found in Colombian coffee beans. This is true for all steps of coffee processing, from berries in trees to toasted grains, including packed coffee ready for retail in supermarkets. Results show that the distribution of these fungi is not random among different steps of coffee processing, which means that some steps are more vulnerable to infection with some fungi that others. The convenience of establishing a program devoted to detect fungi and/or mycotoxins in Colombian commodities, specially coffee, is discussed hereLos hongos son comúnmente encontrados tanto en plantas como en sus productos, bien sea para uso humano o animal. Algunos de tales hongos son potencialmente peligrosos para la salud porque producen compuestos químicos fisiológicamente activos, como alcaloides y toxinas. En Colombia no hay estudios sobre la micoflora naturalmente asociada a granos de café, ni sobre la presencia de especies toxígenas en dicho producto. En este estudio se tomaron muestras de 5.000 granos de café en diferentes estadios de su procesamiento, encontrando que taxones fúngicos potencialmente toxígenos, tales como Aspergillus, Fusarium y Penicillium, son comúnmente encontrados en todos los estadios del procesamiento de café. El estudio incluyó muestras desde el fruto en el árbol hasta café tostado y empacado

  1. High Symbiont Relatedness Stabilizes Mutualistic Cooperation in Fungus-Growing Termites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aanen, Duur K; de Fine Licht, Henrik H; Debets, Alfons J M

    2009-01-01

    It is unclear how mutualistic relationships can be stable when partners disperse freely and have the possibility of forming associations with many alternative genotypes. Theory predicts that high symbiont relatedness should resolve this problem, but the mechanisms to enforce this have rarely been...... studied. We show that African fungus-growing termites propagate single variants of their Termitomyces symbiont, despite initiating cultures from genetically variable spores from the habitat. High inoculation density in the substrate followed by fusion among clonally related mycelia enhances the efficiency...... of spore production in proportion to strain frequency. This positive reinforcement results in an exclusive lifetime association of each host colony with a single fungal symbiont and hinders the evolution of cheating. Our findings explain why vertical symbiont transmission in fungus-growing termites is rare...

  2. Fungal Sinusitis

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Marketplace Find an ENT Doctor Near You Fungal Sinusitis Fungal Sinusitis Patient Health Information News media interested ... sinusitis results. There Are Four Types Of Fungal Sinusitis: Mycetoma Fungal Sinusitis produces clumps of spores, a " ...

  3. Fungal-Fungal Interactions in Leaf-Cutting Ant Agriculture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sunshine A. Van Bael

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Many organisms participate in symbiotic relationships with other organisms, yet studies of symbioses typically have focused on the reciprocal costs and benefits within a particular host-symbiont pair. Recent studies indicate that many ecological interactions involve alliances of symbionts acting together as mutualistic consortia against other consortia. Such interacting consortia are likely to be widespread in nature, even if the interactions often occur in a cryptic fashion. Little theory and empirical data exist concerning how these complex interactions shape ecological outcomes in nature. Here, we review recent work on fungal-fungal interactions between two consortia: (i leaf-cutting ants and their symbiotic fungi (the latter grown as a food crop by the former and (ii tropical plants and their foliar endophytes (the cryptic symbiotic fungi within leaves of the former. Plant characteristics (e.g., secondary compounds or leaf physical properties of leaves are involved in leaf-cutting ant preferences, and a synthesis of published information suggests that these plant traits could be modified by fungal presence. We discuss potential mechanisms for how fungal-fungal interactions proceed in the leaf-cutting ant agriculture and suggest themes for future research.

  4. A Fungal Endosymbiont Affects Host Plant Recruitment Through Seed- and Litter-mediated Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    1. Many grass species are associated with maternally transmitted fungal endophytes. Increasing evidence shows that endophytes enhance host plant success under varied conditions, yet studies have rarely considered alternative mechanisms whereby these mutualistic symbionts may affect regeneration from...

  5. Evolutionarily advanced ant farmers rear polyploid fungal crops

    OpenAIRE

    Pepijn W Kooij; Aanen, D. K.; Schiøtt, M.; Boomsma, Jacobus J.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Innovative evolutionary developments are often related to gene or genome duplications. The crop fungi of attine fungus‐growing ants are suspected to have enhanced genetic variation reminiscent of polyploidy, but this has never been quantified with cytological data and genetic markers. We estimated the number of nuclei per fungal cell for 42 symbionts reared by 14 species of Panamanian fungus‐growing ants. This showed that domesticated symbionts of higher attine ants are polykaryotic ...

  6. The herbaceous landlord: integrating the effects of symbiont consortia within a single host.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vandegrift, Roo; Roy, Bitty A; Pfeifer-Meister, Laurel; Johnson, Bart R; Bridgham, Scott D

    2015-01-01

    Plants are typically infected by a consortium of internal fungal associates, including endophytes in their leaves, as well as arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and dark septate endophytes (DSE) in their roots. It is logical that these organisms will interact with each other and the abiotic environment in addition to their host, but there has been little work to date examining the interactions of multiple symbionts within single plant hosts, or how the relationships among symbionts and their host change across environmental conditions. We examined the grass Agrostis capillaris in the context of a climate manipulation experiment in prairies in the Pacific Northwest, USA. Each plant was tested for presence of foliar endophytes in the genus Epichloë, and we measured percent root length colonized (PRLC) by AMF and DSE. We hypothesized that the symbionts in our system would be in competition for host resources, that the outcome of that competition could be driven by the benefit to the host, and that the host plants would be able to allocate carbon to the symbionts in such a way as to maximize fitness benefit within a particular environmental context. We found a correlation between DSE and AMF PRLC across climatic conditions; we also found a fitness cost to increasing DSE colonization, which was negated by presence of Epichloë endophytes. These results suggest that selective pressure on the host is likely to favor host/symbiont relationships that structure the community of symbionts in the most beneficial way possible for the host, not necessarily favoring the individual symbiont that is most beneficial to the host in isolation. These results highlight the need for a more integrative, systems approach to the study of host/symbiont consortia.

  7. The herbaceous landlord: integrating the effects of symbiont consortia within a single host

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roo Vandegrift

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Plants are typically infected by a consortium of internal fungal associates, including endophytes in their leaves, as well as arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF and dark septate endophytes (DSE in their roots. It is logical that these organisms will interact with each other and the abiotic environment in addition to their host, but there has been little work to date examining the interactions of multiple symbionts within single plant hosts, or how the relationships among symbionts and their host change across environmental conditions. We examined the grass Agrostis capillaris in the context of a climate manipulation experiment in prairies in the Pacific Northwest, USA. Each plant was tested for presence of foliar endophytes in the genus Epichloë, and we measured percent root length colonized (PRLC by AMF and DSE. We hypothesized that the symbionts in our system would be in competition for host resources, that the outcome of that competition could be driven by the benefit to the host, and that the host plants would be able to allocate carbon to the symbionts in such a way as to maximize fitness benefit within a particular environmental context. We found a correlation between DSE and AMF PRLC across climatic conditions; we also found a fitness cost to increasing DSE colonization, which was negated by presence of Epichloë endophytes. These results suggest that selective pressure on the host is likely to favor host/symbiont relationships that structure the community of symbionts in the most beneficial way possible for the host, not necessarily favoring the individual symbiont that is most beneficial to the host in isolation. These results highlight the need for a more integrative, systems approach to the study of host/symbiont consortia.

  8. The Role of Symbiont Genetic Distance and Potential Adaptability in Host Preference Towards Pseudonocardia Symbionts in Acromyrmex Leaf-Cutting Ants

    OpenAIRE

    Thomas-Poulsen, Michael; Maynard, Janielle; Roland, Damien L; Currie, Cameron R

    2011-01-01

    Fungus-growing ants display symbiont preference in behavioral assays, both towards the fungus they cultivate for food and Actinobacteria they maintain on their cuticle for antibiotic production against parasites. These Actinobacteria, genus Pseudonocardia Henssen (Pseudonocardiacea: Actinomycetales), help defend the ants’ fungal mutualist from specialized parasites. In Acromyrmex Mayr (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) leaf-cutting ants, individual colonies maintain either a single or a few strains of...

  9. Symbiont acquisition strategy drives host-symbiont associations in the southern Great Barrier Reef

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stat, M.; Loh, W. K. W.; Hoegh-Guldberg, O.; Carter, D. A.

    2008-12-01

    Coral larvae acquire populations of the symbiotic dinoflagellate Symbiodinium from the external environment (horizontal acquisition) or inherit their symbionts from the parent colony (maternal or vertical acquisition). The effect of the symbiont acquisition strategy on Symbiodinium-host associations has not been fully resolved. Previous studies have provided mixed results, probably due to factors such as low sample replication of Symbiodinium from a single coral host, biogeographic differences in Symbiodinium diversity, and the presence of some apparently host-specific symbiont lineages in coral with either symbiont acquisition strategies. This study set out to assess the effect of the symbiont acquisition strategy by sampling Symbiodinium from 10 coral species (five with a horizontal and five with a vertical symbiont acquisition strategy) across two adjacent reefs in the southern Great Barrier Reef. Symbiodinium diversity was assessed using single-stranded conformational polymorphism of partial nuclear large subunit rDNA and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis of the internal transcribed spacer 2 region. The Symbiodinium population in hosts with a vertical symbiont acquisition strategy partitioned according to coral species, while hosts with a horizontal symbiont acquisition strategy shared a common symbiont type across the two reef environments. Comparative analysis of existing data from the southern Great Barrier Reef found that the majority of corals with a vertical symbiont acquisition strategy associated with distinct species- or genus-specific Symbiodinium lineages, but some could also associate with symbiont types that were more commonly found in hosts with a horizontal symbiont acquisition strategy.

  10. Swapping symbionts in spittlebugs: evolutionary replacement of a reduced genome symbiont.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koga, Ryuichi; Moran, Nancy A

    2014-06-01

    Bacterial symbionts that undergo long-term maternal transmission experience elevated fixation of deleterious mutations, resulting in massive loss of genes and changes in gene sequences that appear to limit efficiency of gene products. Potentially, this dwindling of symbiont functionality impacts hosts that depend on these bacteria for nutrition. One evolutionary escape route is the acquisition of a novel symbiont with a robust genome and metabolic capabilities. Such an acquisition has occurred in an ancestor of Philaenus spumarius, the meadow spittlebug (Insecta: Cercopoidea), which has replaced its ancient association with the tiny genome symbiont Zinderia insecticola (Betaproteobacteria) with an association with a symbiont related to Sodalis glossinidius (Gammaproteobacteria). Spittlebugs feed exclusively on xylem sap, a diet that is low both in essential amino acids and in sugar or other substrates for energy production. The new symbiont genome has undergone proliferation of mobile elements resulting in many gene inactivations; nonetheless, it has selectively maintained genes replacing functions of its predecessor for amino-acid biosynthesis. Whereas ancient symbiont partners typically retain perfectly complementary sets of amino-acid biosynthetic pathways, the novel symbiont introduces some redundancy as it retains some pathways also present in the partner symbionts (Sulcia muelleri). Strikingly, the newly acquired Sodalis-like symbiont retains genes underlying efficient routes of energy production, including a complete TCA cycle, potentially relaxing the severe energy limitations of the xylem-feeding hosts. Although evolutionary replacements of ancient symbionts are infrequent, they potentially enable evolutionary and ecological novelty by conferring novel metabolic capabilities to host lineages.

  11. Fungal arthritis

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... this page: //medlineplus.gov/ency/article/000444.htm Fungal arthritis To use the sharing features on this page, please enable JavaScript. Fungal arthritis is swelling and irritation (inflammation) of a joint ...

  12. Fungal Meningitis

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Schedules Preteen & Teen Vaccines Meningococcal Disease Sepsis Fungal Meningitis Language: English Español (Spanish) Recommend on Facebook Tweet ... the brain or spinal cord. Investigation of Fungal Meningitis, 2012 In September 2012, the Centers for Disease ...

  13. Swapping symbionts in spittlebugs: evolutionary replacement of a reduced genome symbiont

    OpenAIRE

    Koga, Ryuichi; Moran, Nancy A.

    2014-01-01

    Bacterial symbionts that undergo long-term maternal transmission experience elevated fixation of deleterious mutations, resulting in massive loss of genes and changes in gene sequences that appear to limit efficiency of gene products. Potentially, this dwindling of symbiont functionality impacts hosts that depend on these bacteria for nutrition. One evolutionary escape route is the acquisition of a novel symbiont with a robust genome and metabolic capabilities. Such an acquisition has occurre...

  14. Culture and manipulation of insect facultative symbionts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pontes, Mauricio H; Dale, Colin

    2006-09-01

    Insects from many different taxonomic groups harbor maternally transmitted bacterial symbionts. Some of these associations are ancient in origin and obligate in nature whereas others originated more recently and are facultative. Previous research focused on the biology of ancient obligate symbionts with essential nutritional roles in their insect hosts. However, recent important advances in understanding the biology of facultative associations have been driven by the development of techniques for the culture, genetic modification and manipulation of facultative symbionts. In this review, we examine these available experimental techniques and illustrate how they have provided fascinating new insight into the nature of associations involving facultative symbionts. We also propose a rationale for future research based on the integration of genomics and experimentation.

  15. [Fungal keratitis].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourcier, T; Sauer, A; Letscher-Bru, V; Candolfi, E

    2011-10-01

    Fungal keratitis (keratomycosis) is a rare but severe cause of infectious keratitis. Its incidence is constant, due to steroids or immunosuppressive treatments and contact lenses. Pathogens often invade corneas with chronic diseases of the ocular surface but fungal keratitis is also observed following injuries with plant foreign objects. The poor prognosis of these infections is related both to fungal virulence, decreased host defense, as well as delays in diagnosis. However, new antimycotic treatments allow better management and prognosis.

  16. Symbiont-derived beta-1,3-glucanases in a social insect: mutualism beyond nutrition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebeca B Rosengaus

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Termites have had a long co-evolutionary history with prokaryotic and eukaryotic gut microbes. Historically, the role of these anaerobic obligate symbionts has been attributed to the nutritional welfare of the host. We provide evidence that protozoa (and/or their associated bacteria colonizing the hindgut of the dampwood termite Zootermopsis angusticollis, synthesize multiple functional beta-1,3-glucanases, enzymes known for breaking down beta-1,3-glucans, the main component of fungal cell walls. These enzymes, we propose, may help in both digestion of ingested fungal hyphae and protection against invasion by fungal pathogens. This research points to an additional novel role for the mutualistic hindgut microbial consortia of termites, an association that may extend beyond ligno-cellulolytic activity and nitrogen fixation to include a reduction in the risks of mycosis at both the individual- and colony-levels while nesting in and feeding on microbial-rich decayed wood.

  17. Variable interaction specificity and symbiont performance in Panamanian Trachymyrmex and Sericomyrmex fungus-growing ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    de Fine Licht, Henrik Hjarvard; Boomsma, Jacobus Jan

    2014-01-01

    Background Cooperative benefits of mutualistic interactions are affected by genetic variation among the interacting partners, which may have consequences for interaction-specificities across guilds of sympatric species with similar mutualistic life histories. The gardens of fungus-growing (attine...... and Sericomyrmex higher attine ants in Gamboa, Panama provided the opportunity to do a quantitative study of species-level interaction-specificity. Results We genotyped the ants for Cytochrome Oxidase and their Leucoagaricus fungal cultivars for ITS rDNA. Combined with activity measurements for 12 carbohydrate...... cultivar symbiont-specificity varied from almost full symbiont sharing to one-to-one specialization, suggesting that trade-offs between enzyme activity spectra and life-history traits such as desiccation tolerance, disease susceptibility and temperature sensitivity may apply in some combinations...

  18. Fungal rhinosinusitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Netkovski, J; Shirgoska, B

    2012-01-01

    Fungi are a major part of the ecosystem. In fact, over 250 fungal species have been reported to produce human infections. More than ever, fungal diseases have emerged as major challenges for physicians and clinical microbiologists. The aim of this study was to summarize the diagnostic procedures and endoscopic surgical treatment of patients with fungal rhinosinusitis. Eleven patients, i.e. 10% of all cases with chronic inflammation of paranasal sinuses, were diagnosed with fungal rhinosinusitis. Ten of them were patients with a noninvasive form, fungus ball, while only one patient was classified in the group of chronic invasive fungal rhinosinusitis which was accompanied with diabetes mellitus. All patients underwent nasal endoscopic examination, skin allergy test and had preoperative computed tomography (CT) scans of the sinuses in axial and coronal plane. Functional endoscopic sinus surgery was performed in 10 patients with fungus ball, while a combined approach, endoscopic and external, was done in the immunocompromised patient with the chronic invasive form of fungal rhinosinusitis. Most cases (9/11) had unilateral infection. In 9 cases infection was restricted to a single sinus, and here the maxillary sinus was most commonly affected (8/9) with infections in other patients being restricted to the sphenoid sinus (1/9). Two patients had infections affecting two or more sinuses. In patients with an invasive form of the fungal disease there was involvement of the periorbital and orbital tissues. In patients with fungus ball the mycelia masses were completely removed from the sinus cavities. Long-term outcome was positive in all the operated patients and no recurrence was detected. The most frequent fungal agent that caused rhinosinusitis was Aspergillus. Mucor was identified in the patient with the invasive form. Endoscopic examination of the nasal cavity and CT scanning of paranasal sinuses followed by endoscopic sinus surgery were represented as valuable

  19. Fungal allergens.

    OpenAIRE

    1995-01-01

    Airborne fungal spores occur widely and often in far greater concentrations than pollen grains. Immunoglobulin E-specific antigens (allergens) on airborne fungal spores induce type I hypersensitivity (allergic) respiratory reactions in sensitized atopic subjects, causing rhinitis and/or asthma. The prevalence of respiratory allergy to fungi is imprecisely known but is estimated at 20 to 30% of atopic (allergy-predisposed) individuals or up to 6% of the general population. Diagnosis and immuno...

  20. Endophytic life strategies decoded by genome and transcriptome analyses of the mutualistic root symbiont Piriformospora indica.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alga Zuccaro

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Recent sequencing projects have provided deep insight into fungal lifestyle-associated genomic adaptations. Here we report on the 25 Mb genome of the mutualistic root symbiont Piriformospora indica (Sebacinales, Basidiomycota and provide a global characterization of fungal transcriptional responses associated with the colonization of living and dead barley roots. Extensive comparative analysis of the P. indica genome with other Basidiomycota and Ascomycota fungi that have diverse lifestyle strategies identified features typically associated with both, biotrophism and saprotrophism. The tightly controlled expression of the lifestyle-associated gene sets during the onset of the symbiosis, revealed by microarray analysis, argues for a biphasic root colonization strategy of P. indica. This is supported by a cytological study that shows an early biotrophic growth followed by a cell death-associated phase. About 10% of the fungal genes induced during the biotrophic colonization encoded putative small secreted proteins (SSP, including several lectin-like proteins and members of a P. indica-specific gene family (DELD with a conserved novel seven-amino acids motif at the C-terminus. Similar to effectors found in other filamentous organisms, the occurrence of the DELDs correlated with the presence of transposable elements in gene-poor repeat-rich regions of the genome. This is the first in depth genomic study describing a mutualistic symbiont with a biphasic lifestyle. Our findings provide a significant advance in understanding development of biotrophic plant symbionts and suggest a series of incremental shifts along the continuum from saprotrophy towards biotrophy in the evolution of mycorrhizal association from decomposer fungi.

  1. Social insect symbionts: evolution in homeostatic fortresses

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hughes, David P; Pierce, Naomi E; Boomsma, Jacobus J

    2008-01-01

    The massive environmentally buffered nests of some social insects can contain millions of individuals and a wide variety of parasites, commensals and mutualists. We suggest that the ways in which these homeostatic fortress environments affect the evolution of social insect symbionts are relevant...... for epidemiology, evolutionary biology and macroecology. We contend that specialized parasites will tend to become less virulent and mutualists less cooperative, compared to those associated with solitary or small-colony hosts. These processes are expected to contribute to the very high symbiont diversity observed...

  2. Evolutionarily advanced ant farmers rear polyploid fungal crops

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kooij, Pepijn Wilhelmus; Aanen, D.K.; Schiøtt, Morten

    2015-01-01

    Innovative evolutionary developments are often related to gene or genome duplications. The crop fungi of attine fungus-growing ants are suspected to have enhanced genetic variation reminiscent of polyploidy, but this has never been quantified with cytological data and genetic markers. We estimated...... the number of nuclei per fungal cell for 42 symbionts reared by 14 species of Panamanian fungus-growing ants. This showed that domesticated symbionts of higher attine ants are polykaryotic with 7-17 nuclei per cell, whereas nonspecialized crops of lower attines are dikaryotic similar to most free......-living basidiomycete fungi. We then investigated how putative higher genetic diversity is distributed across polykaryotic mycelia, using microsatellite loci and evaluating models assuming that all nuclei are either heterogeneously haploid or homogeneously polyploid. Genetic variation in the polykaryotic symbionts...

  3. Fungal nail infection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nails - fungal infection; Onychomycosis; Infection - fungal - nails; Tinea unguium ... hair, nails, and outer skin layers. Common fungal infections include: Athlete's foot Jock itch Ringworm on the ...

  4. Potential applications of insect symbionts in biotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berasategui, Aileen; Shukla, Shantanu; Salem, Hassan; Kaltenpoth, Martin

    2016-02-01

    Symbiotic interactions between insects and microorganisms are widespread in nature and are often the source of ecological innovations. In addition to supplementing their host with essential nutrients, microbial symbionts can produce enzymes that help degrade their food source as well as small molecules that defend against pathogens, parasites, and predators. As such, the study of insect ecology and symbiosis represents an important source of chemical compounds and enzymes with potential biotechnological value. In addition, the knowledge on insect symbiosis can provide novel avenues for the control of agricultural pest insects and vectors of human diseases, through targeted manipulation of the symbionts or the host-symbiont associations. Here, we discuss different insect-microbe interactions that can be exploited for insect pest and human disease control, as well as in human medicine and industrial processes. Our aim is to raise awareness that insect symbionts can be interesting sources of biotechnological applications and that knowledge on insect ecology can guide targeted efforts to discover microorganisms of applied value.

  5. Fungal keratitis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sonal S Tuli

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Sonal S TuliUniversity of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA  Clinical question: What is the most appropriate management of fungal keratitis?Results: Traditionally, topical Natamycin is the most commonly used medication for filamentous fungi while Amphotericin B is most commonly used for yeast. Voriconazole is rapidly becoming the drug of choice for all fungal keratitis because of its wide spectrum of coverage and increased penetration into the cornea.Implementation: Repeated debridement of the ulcer is recommended for the penetration of topical medications. While small, peripheral ulcers may be treated in the community, larger or central ulcers, especially if associated with signs suggestive of anterior chamber penetration should be referred to a tertiary center. Prolonged therapy for approximately four weeks is usually necessary.Keywords: fungal keratitis, keratomycosis, antifungal medications, debridement

  6. Fungal Adaptations to Mutualistic Life with Ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kooij, Pepijn Wilhelmus

    that forage on crude substrates such as insect frass and dry plant material, to large colonies of the leaf-cutting ants with several thousands to several million workers that provide live plant material to their fungus gardens. Leaf-cutting ants are the dominant herbivores of the Neo-tropics, and have a major...... on specific enzyme groups and Acromyrmex having an overall high enzyme activity. Finally, I show that the fungal symbiont of the leaf-cutting ant Acromyrmex echinatior produces large amounts of biodegrading enzymes in special structures called gongylidia. The ants eat these structures, but enzymes pass...

  7. Complementary symbiont contributions to plant decomposition in a fungus-farming termite

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomas-Poulsen, Michael; Hu, Haofu; Li, Cai

    2014-01-01

    Termites normally rely on gut symbionts to decompose organic matter but the Macrotermitinae domesticated Termitomyces fungi to produce their own food. This transition was accompanied by a shift in the composition of the gut microbiota, but the complementary roles of these bacteria in the symbiosis...... in the symbiosis, that Termitomyces has the genomic capacity to handle complex carbohydrates, and that worker gut microbes primarily contribute enzymes for final digestion of oligosaccharides. This apparent division of labor is consistent with the Macrotermes gut microbes being most important during the second...... appears to be mainly accomplished by complementary cooperation between a domesticated fungal monoculture and a specialized bacterial community. In sharp contrast, the gut microbiota of the queen had highly reduced plant decomposition potential, suggesting that mature reproductives digest fungal material...

  8. Variable interaction specificity and symbiont performance in Panamanian Trachymyrmex and Sericomyrmex fungus-growing ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Fine Licht, Henrik H; Boomsma, Jacobus J

    2014-12-04

    Cooperative benefits of mutualistic interactions are affected by genetic variation among the interacting partners, which may have consequences for interaction-specificities across guilds of sympatric species with similar mutualistic life histories. The gardens of fungus-growing (attine) ants produce carbohydrate active enzymes that degrade plant material collected by the ants and offer them food in exchange. The spectrum of these enzyme activities is an important symbiont service to the host but may vary among cultivar genotypes. The sympatric occurrence of several Trachymyrmex and Sericomyrmex higher attine ants in Gamboa, Panama provided the opportunity to do a quantitative study of species-level interaction-specificity. We genotyped the ants for Cytochrome Oxidase and their Leucoagaricus fungal cultivars for ITS rDNA. Combined with activity measurements for 12 carbohydrate active enzymes, these data allowed us to test whether garden enzyme activity was affected by fungal strain, farming ants or combinations of the two. We detected two cryptic ant species, raising ant species number from four to six, and we show that the 38 sampled colonies reared a total of seven fungal haplotypes that were different enough to represent separate Leucoagaricus species. The Sericomyrmex species and one of the Trachymyrmex species reared the same fungal cultivar in all sampled colonies, but the remaining four Trachymyrmex species largely shared the other cultivars. Fungal enzyme activity spectra were significantly affected by both cultivar species and farming ant species, and more so for certain ant-cultivar combinations than others. However, relative changes in activity of single enzymes only depended on cultivar genotype and not on the ant species farming a cultivar. Ant cultivar symbiont-specificity varied from almost full symbiont sharing to one-to-one specialization, suggesting that trade-offs between enzyme activity spectra and life-history traits such as desiccation

  9. Fungal prions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Staniforth, Gemma L; Tuite, Mick F

    2012-01-01

    For both mammalian and fungal prion proteins, conformational templating drives the phenomenon of protein-only infectivity. The conformational conversion of a protein to its transmissible prion state is associated with changes to host cellular physiology. In mammals, this change is synonymous with disease, whereas in fungi no notable detrimental effect on the host is typically observed. Instead, fungal prions can serve as epigenetic regulators of inheritance in the form of partial loss-of-function phenotypes. In the presence of environmental challenges, the prion state [PRION(+)], with its resource for phenotypic plasticity, can be associated with a growth advantage. The growing number of yeast proteins that can switch to a heritable [PRION(+)] form represents diverse and metabolically penetrating cellular functions, suggesting that the [PRION(+)] state in yeast is a functional one, albeit rarely found in nature. In this chapter, we introduce the biochemical and genetic properties of fungal prions, many of which are shared by the mammalian prion protein PrP, and then outline the major contributions that studies on fungal prions have made to prion biology.

  10. Fungal Entomopathogens

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fungal entomopathogens are important biological control agents worldwide and have been the subject of intense research for more than100 years. They exhibit both sexual and asexual reproduction and produce different types of infective propagules. Their mode of action against insects involves attachme...

  11. Laccase detoxification mediates the nutritional alliance between leaf-cutting ants and fungus-garden symbionts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Fine Licht, Henrik H; Schiøtt, Morten; Rogowska-Wrzesinska, Adelina; Nygaard, Sanne; Roepstorff, Peter; Boomsma, Jacobus J

    2013-01-08

    Leaf-cutting ants combine large-scale herbivory with fungus farming to sustain advanced societies. Their stratified colonies are major evolutionary achievements and serious agricultural pests, but the crucial adaptations that allowed this mutualism to become the prime herbivorous component of neotropical ecosystems has remained elusive. Here we show how coevolutionary adaptation of a specific enzyme in the fungal symbiont has helped leaf-cutting ants overcome plant defensive phenolic compounds. We identify nine putative laccase-coding genes in the fungal genome of Leucocoprinus gongylophorus cultivated by the leaf-cutting ant Acromyrmex echinatior. One of these laccases (LgLcc1) is highly expressed in the specialized hyphal tips (gongylidia) that the ants preferentially eat, and we confirm that these ingested laccase molecules pass through the ant guts and remain active when defecated on the leaf pulp that the ants add to their gardens. This accurate deposition ensures that laccase activity is highest where new leaf material enters the fungus garden, but where fungal mycelium is too sparse to produce extracellular enzymes in sufficient quantities to detoxify phenolic compounds. Phylogenetic analysis of LgLcc1 ortholog sequences from symbiotic and free-living fungi revealed significant positive selection in the ancestral lineage that gave rise to the gongylidia-producing symbionts of leaf-cutting ants and their non-leaf-cutting ant sister group. Our results are consistent with fungal preadaptation and subsequent modification of a particular laccase enzyme for the detoxification of secondary plant compounds during the transition to active herbivory in the ancestor of leaf-cutting ants between 8 and 12 Mya.

  12. Mycorrhizal symbionts of Pisonia grandis and P. sechellarum in Seychelles: identification of mycorrhizal fungi and description of new Tomentella species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suvi, Triin; Tedersoo, Leho; Abarenkov, Kessy; Beaver, Katy; Gerlach, Justin; Kõljalg, Urmas

    2010-01-01

    Nyctaginaceae includes species that are predominantly non-mycorrhizal or form arbuscular or ectomycorrhiza. Root-associated fungi were studied from P. grandis and P. sechellarum roots collected respectively on the islands of Cousin and Silhouette in Seychelles. In addition fungal sporocarps were collected from the sampling area. Fungal symbionts were identified from the roots by anatomotyping and rDNA sequencing; sporocarps collected were examined microscopically and sequenced. Three distantly related ectomycorrhizal fungal species belonging to Thelephoraceae were identified from the roots of P. grandis. Sporocarps also were found for two symbionts and described as new Tomentella species. In addition Tomentella species collected from other Seychelles islands were studied and described as new species if there was no close resemblance to previously established species. P. sechellarum was determined to be an arbuscular mycorrhizal plant; three arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal species were detected from the roots. P. grandis is probably associated only with species of Thelephoraceae throughout its area. Only five Tomentella species are known to form ectomycorrhiza with P. grandis and they never have been found to be associated with another host, suggesting adaptation of these fungi to extreme environmental conditions in host's habitat.

  13. Fueling the Future with Fungal Genomes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grigoriev, Igor V.

    2014-10-27

    Genomes of fungi relevant to energy and environment are in focus of the JGI Fungal Genomic Program. One of its projects, the Genomics Encyclopedia of Fungi, targets fungi related to plant health (symbionts and pathogens) and biorefinery processes (cellulose degradation and sugar fermentation) by means of genome sequencing and analysis. New chapters of the Encyclopedia can be opened with user proposals to the JGI Community Science Program (CSP). Another JGI project, the 1000 fungal genomes, explores fungal diversity on genome level at scale and is open for users to nominate new species for sequencing. Over 400 fungal genomes have been sequenced by JGI to date and released through MycoCosm (www.jgi.doe.gov/fungi), a fungal web-portal, which integrates sequence and functional data with genome analysis tools for user community. Sequence analysis supported by functional genomics will lead to developing parts list for complex systems ranging from ecosystems of biofuel crops to biorefineries. Recent examples of such ‘parts’ suggested by comparative genomics and functional analysis in these areas are presented here.

  14. Fungal Genomics for Energy and Environment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grigoriev, Igor V.

    2013-03-11

    Genomes of fungi relevant to energy and environment are in focus of the Fungal Genomic Program at the US Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute (JGI). One of its projects, the Genomics Encyclopedia of Fungi, targets fungi related to plant health (symbionts, pathogens, and biocontrol agents) and biorefinery processes (cellulose degradation, sugar fermentation, industrial hosts) by means of genome sequencing and analysis. New chapters of the Encyclopedia can be opened with user proposals to the JGI Community Sequencing Program (CSP). Another JGI project, the 1000 fungal genomes, explores fungal diversity on genome level at scale and is open for users to nominate new species for sequencing. Over 200 fungal genomes have been sequenced by JGI to date and released through MycoCosm (www.jgi.doe.gov/fungi), a fungal web-portal, which integrates sequence and functional data with genome analysis tools for user community. Sequence analysis supported by functional genomics leads to developing parts list for complex systems ranging from ecosystems of biofuel crops to biorefineries. Recent examples of such parts suggested by comparative genomics and functional analysis in these areas are presented here.

  15. Diverse strategies for vertical symbiont transmission among subsocial stinkbugs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takahiro Hosokawa

    Full Text Available Sociality may affect symbiosis and vice versa. Many plant-sucking stinkbugs harbor mutualistic bacterial symbionts in the midgut. In the superfamily Pentatomoidea, adult females excrete symbiont-containing materials from the anus, which their offspring ingest orally and establish vertical symbiont transmission. In many stinkbug families whose members are mostly non-social, females excrete symbiont-containing materials onto/beside eggs upon oviposition. However, exceptional cases have been reported from two subsocial species representing the closely related families Cydnidae and Parastrachiidae, wherein females remain nearby eggs for maternal care after oviposition, and provide their offspring with symbiont-containing secretions at later stages, either just before or after hatching. These observations suggested that sociality of the host stinkbugs may be correlated with their symbiont transmission strategies. However, we found that cydnid stinkbugs of the genus Adomerus, which are associated with gammaproteobacterial gut symbionts and exhibit elaborate maternal care over their offspring, smear symbiont-containing secretions onto eggs upon oviposition as many non-social stinkbugs do. Surface sterilization of the eggs resulted in aposymbiotic insects of slower growth, smaller size and abnormal body coloration, indicating vertical symbiont transmission via egg surface contamination and presumable beneficial nature of the symbiosis. The Adomerus symbionts exhibited AT-biased nucleotide compositions, accelerated molecular evolutionary rates and reduced genome size, while these degenerative genomic traits were less severe than those in the symbiont of a subsocial parastrachiid. These results suggest that not only sociality but also other ecological and evolutionary aspects of the host stinkbugs, including the host-symbiont co-evolutionary history, may have substantially affected their symbiont transmission strategies.

  16. Composition of fungal communities in soil and endophytic in raspberry production systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fungi play important roles as decomposers, plant symbionts and pathogens in soil. While endophytes are microorganisms that dwell within plant tissues and have a symbiotic association with the host. The structures of fungal communities in the soil and in endophytic association are dependent up comple...

  17. The Calyptogena magnifica chemoautotrophic symbiont genome

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Newton, I.L.; Woyke, T.; Auchtung, T.A.; Dilly, G.F.; Dutton,R.J.; Fisher, M.C.; Fontanez, K.M.; Lau, E.; Stewart, F.J.; Richardson,P.M.; Barry, K.W.; Saunders, E.; Detter, J.C.; Wu, D.; Eisen, J.A.; Cavanaugh, C.M.

    2007-03-01

    Chemoautotrophic endosymbionts are the metabolic cornerstone of hydrothermal vent communities, providing invertebrate hosts with nearly all of their nutrition. The Calyptogena magnifica (Bivalvia: Vesicomyidae) symbiont, Candidatus Ruthia magnifica, is the first intracellular sulfur-oxidizing endosymbiont to have its genome sequenced, revealing a suite of metabolic capabilities. The genome encodes major chemoautotrophic pathways as well as pathways for biosynthesis of vitamins, cofactors, and all 20 amino acids required by the clam.

  18. Accumulation of radionuclides by lichen symbionts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nifontova, M.G.; Kulikov, N.V. (AN SSSR, Sverdlovsk. Inst. Ehkologii Rastenij i Zhivotnykh)

    1983-01-01

    The aim of investigation is the quantitative estimation of ability and role of separate symbionts in the accumulation of radionuclides. As investigation volumes, durably cultivated green lichen alga Trebouxia erici and lichen fungi extracted from Cladonia rangiferina, Parmelia caperata and Acarospora fuscata are used. The accumulation of radioactive isotopes with fungi and seaweeds is estimated according to accumulation coefficients (AC) which are the ratio of radiation concentration in plants and agarized medium. Radionuclide content (/sup 90/Sr and /sup 137/Cs) is determined radiometrically. A special series of experiments is done to investigate radionuclide accumulation dependences with lichen seaweed and fungi on light conditions. It is shown that both symbionts of lichen-seaweed and fungus take part in the accumulation of radionuclide from outer medium (atmospheric fall-out and soil). However fungus component constituting the base of structural organization of thallus provides the greater part of radionuclides accumulated by the plant. Along with this the violation of viability of seaweed symbionts particularly in the case of light deficiency brings about the reduction of /sup 137/Cs sorption by seaweeds and tells on the total content of radiocesium in plant thallus.

  19. Sex allocation in fungus-growing ants: worker or queen control without symbiont-induced female bias

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dijkstra, Michiel B.; Boomsma, Jacobus Jan

    2008-01-01

    with the theoretical queen and worker optima for a range of values of k, the correction factor for sex differences in metabolic rate and fat content. The results were consistent with either worker or queen control, but never with fungal control for any realistic value of k. We conclude that the fungal symbiont does......The fungal cultivars of fungus-growing ants are vertically transmitted by queens but not males. Selection would therefore favor cultivars that bias the ants' sex ratio towards gynes, beyond the gyne bias that is optimal for workers and queens. We measured sex allocation in 190 colonies of six...... sympatric fungus-growing ant species. As predicted from relatedness, female bias was greater in four singly mated Sericomyrmex and Trachymyrmex species than in two multiply mated Acromyrmex species. Colonies tended to raise mainly a single sex, which could be partly explained by variation in queen number...

  20. Multiple symbiont acquisition strategies as an adaptive mechanism in the coral Stylophora pistillata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Byler, Kristen A; Carmi-Veal, Maya; Fine, Maoz; Goulet, Tamar L

    2013-01-01

    In obligate symbioses, the host's survival relies on the successful acquisition and maintenance of symbionts. Symbionts can either be transferred from parent to offspring via direct inheritance (vertical transmission) or acquired anew each generation from the environment (horizontal transmission). With vertical symbiont transmission, progeny benefit by not having to search for their obligate symbionts, and, with symbiont inheritance, a mechanism exists for perpetuating advantageous symbionts. But, if the progeny encounter an environment that differs from that of their parent, they may be disadvantaged if the inherited symbionts prove suboptimal. Conversely, while in horizontal symbiont acquisition host survival hinges on an unpredictable symbiont source, an individual host may acquire genetically diverse symbionts well suited to any given environment. In horizontal acquisition, however, a potentially advantageous symbiont will not be transmitted to subsequent generations. Adaptation in obligate symbioses may require mechanisms for both novel symbiont acquisition and symbiont inheritance. Using denaturing-gradient gel electrophoresis and real-time PCR, we identified the dinoflagellate symbionts (genus Symbiodinium) hosted by the Red Sea coral Stylophora pistillata throughout its ontogenesis and over depth. We present evidence that S. pistillata juvenile colonies may utilize both vertical and horizontal symbiont acquisition strategies. By releasing progeny with maternally derived symbionts, that are also capable of subsequent horizontal symbiont acquisition, coral colonies may acquire physiologically advantageous novel symbionts that are then perpetuated via vertical transmission to subsequent generations. With symbiont inheritance, natural selection can act upon the symbiotic variability, providing a mechanism for coral adaptation.

  1. Multiple symbiont acquisition strategies as an adaptive mechanism in the coral Stylophora pistillata.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristen A Byler

    Full Text Available In obligate symbioses, the host's survival relies on the successful acquisition and maintenance of symbionts. Symbionts can either be transferred from parent to offspring via direct inheritance (vertical transmission or acquired anew each generation from the environment (horizontal transmission. With vertical symbiont transmission, progeny benefit by not having to search for their obligate symbionts, and, with symbiont inheritance, a mechanism exists for perpetuating advantageous symbionts. But, if the progeny encounter an environment that differs from that of their parent, they may be disadvantaged if the inherited symbionts prove suboptimal. Conversely, while in horizontal symbiont acquisition host survival hinges on an unpredictable symbiont source, an individual host may acquire genetically diverse symbionts well suited to any given environment. In horizontal acquisition, however, a potentially advantageous symbiont will not be transmitted to subsequent generations. Adaptation in obligate symbioses may require mechanisms for both novel symbiont acquisition and symbiont inheritance. Using denaturing-gradient gel electrophoresis and real-time PCR, we identified the dinoflagellate symbionts (genus Symbiodinium hosted by the Red Sea coral Stylophora pistillata throughout its ontogenesis and over depth. We present evidence that S. pistillata juvenile colonies may utilize both vertical and horizontal symbiont acquisition strategies. By releasing progeny with maternally derived symbionts, that are also capable of subsequent horizontal symbiont acquisition, coral colonies may acquire physiologically advantageous novel symbionts that are then perpetuated via vertical transmission to subsequent generations. With symbiont inheritance, natural selection can act upon the symbiotic variability, providing a mechanism for coral adaptation.

  2. Regulation of the fungal secretome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCotter, Sean W; Horianopoulos, Linda C; Kronstad, James W

    2016-08-01

    The ability of countless representatives of the Kingdom Fungi to adapt to and proliferate in diverse environments is facilitated by regulation of their secretomes to respond to changes in environmental conditions and to mediate interactions with other organisms. Secretome changes often fulfill common functions of nutrient acquisition, facilitation of host/symbiont interactions, cell wall modification, and optimization of the enzyme suite to adapt to new environmental resources. In this review, we expand on our recent work on signaling and the secretome in the pathogenic fungus Cryptococcus neoformans to consider a range of selected examples of regulation of fungal secretomes. These examples include the impact of carbon source and aspects of the response to plant and animal hosts. Additionally, the influence of key protein kinases (e.g., Pka1, Snf1) and transcription factors (e.g., Rim101/PacC) is highlighted to illustrate some underlying regulatory factors influencing the secretome. Although there is a wealth of information about fungal secretomes from both experimentation and genome sequence mining, there are also major gaps in our knowledge about the complete composition of fungal secretomes and mechanisms of dynamic change. For example, a more comprehensive understanding of the composition and regulation of the secretome will require consideration of the emerging roles of unconventional secretion and extracellular vesicles in delivering proteins outside the cell. Overall, changes in the secretome are well documented in diverse fungi and the underlying mechanisms are currently under investigation; however, there remain unknown steps in the regulation of secretory pathways and gaps in understanding the regulation of unconventional secretion, which warrant further research.

  3. Fungal Eye Infections

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Treatment & Outcomes Statistics More Resources Fungal Nail Infections Histoplasmosis Definition Symptoms People at Risk & Prevention Sources Diagnosis & ... CDC at Work Global Fungal Diseases Cryptococcal Meningitis Histoplasmosis ... Resistance Resources Laboratory Submission Information Reportable Fungal ...

  4. Standard methods for research on apis mellifera gut symbionts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gut microbes can play an important role in digestion, disease resistance, and the general health of animals, but little is known about the biology of gut symbionts in Apis mellifera. This paper is part of a series on honey bee research methods, providing protocols for studying gut symbionts. We desc...

  5. Comparative genomics of vesicomyid clam (Bivalvia: Mollusca chemosynthetic symbionts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Girguis Peter R

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Vesicomyidae (Bivalvia: Mollusca are a family of clams that form symbioses with chemosynthetic gamma-proteobacteria. They exist in environments such as hydrothermal vents and cold seeps and have a reduced gut and feeding groove, indicating a large dependence on their endosymbionts for nutrition. Recently, two vesicomyid symbiont genomes were sequenced, illuminating the possible nutritional contributions of the symbiont to the host and making genome-wide evolutionary analyses possible. Results To examine the genomic evolution of the vesicomyid symbionts, a comparative genomics framework, including the existing genomic data combined with heterologous microarray hybridization results, was used to analyze conserved gene content in four vesicomyid symbiont genomes. These four symbionts were chosen to include a broad phylogenetic sampling of the vesicomyid symbionts and represent distinct chemosynthetic environments: cold seeps and hydrothermal vents. Conclusion The results of this comparative genomics analysis emphasize the importance of the symbionts' chemoautotrophic metabolism within their hosts. The fact that these symbionts appear to be metabolically capable autotrophs underscores the extent to which the host depends on them for nutrition and reveals the key to invertebrate colonization of these challenging environments.

  6. Pyrosequencing Reveals Fungal Communities in the Rhizosphere of Xinjiang Jujube

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peng Liu

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Fungi are important soil components as both decomposers and plant symbionts and play a major role in ecological and biogeochemical processes. However, little is known about the richness and structure of fungal communities. DNA sequencing technologies allow for the direct estimation of microbial community diversity, avoiding culture-based biases. We therefore used 454 pyrosequencing to investigate the fungal communities in the rhizosphere of Xinjiang jujube. We obtained no less than 40,488 internal transcribed spacer (ITS rDNA reads, the number of each sample was 6943, 6647, 6584, 6550, 6860, and 6904, and we used bioinformatics and multivariate statistics to analyze the results. The index of diversity showed greater richness in the rhizosphere fungal community of a 3-year-old jujube than in that of an 8-year-old jujube. Most operational taxonomic units belonged to Ascomycota, and taxonomic analyses identified Hypocreales as the dominant fungal order. Our results demonstrated that the fungal orders are present in different proportions in different sampling areas. Redundancy analysis (RDA revealed a significant correlation between soil properties and the abundance of fungal phyla. Our results indicated lower fungal diversity in the rhizosphere of Xinjiang jujube than that reported in other studies, and we hope our findings provide a reference for future research.

  7. Experimental replacement of an obligate insect symbiont.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moran, Nancy A; Yun, Yueli

    2015-02-17

    Symbiosis, the close association of unrelated organisms, has been pivotal in biological diversification. In the obligate symbioses found in many insect hosts, organisms that were once independent are permanently and intimately associated, resulting in expanded ecological capabilities. The primary model for this kind of symbiosis is the association between the bacterium Buchnera and the pea aphid (Acyrthosiphon pisum). A longstanding obstacle to efforts to illuminate genetic changes underlying obligate symbioses has been the inability to experimentally disrupt and reconstitute symbiont-host partnerships. Our experiments show that Buchnera can be experimentally transferred between aphid matrilines and, furthermore, that Buchnera replacement has a massive effect on host fitness. Using a recipient pea aphid matriline containing Buchnera that are heat sensitive because of an allele eliminating the heat shock response of a small chaperone, we reduced native Buchnera through heat exposure and introduced a genetically distinct Buchnera from another matriline, achieving complete replacement and stable inheritance. This transfer disrupted 100 million years (∼ 1 billion generations) of continuous maternal transmission of Buchnera in its host aphids. Furthermore, aphids with the Buchnera replacement enjoyed a dramatic increase in heat tolerance, directly demonstrating a strong effect of symbiont genotype on host ecology.

  8. Large shift in symbiont assemblage in the invasive red turpentine beetle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taerum, Stephen J; Duong, Tuan A; de Beer, Z Wilhelm; Gillette, Nancy; Sun, Jiang-Hua; Owen, Donald R; Wingfield, Michael J

    2013-01-01

    Changes in symbiont assemblages can affect the success and impact of invasive species, and may provide knowledge regarding the invasion histories of their vectors. Bark beetle symbioses are ideal systems to study changes in symbiont assemblages resulting from invasions. The red turpentine beetle (Dendroctonus valens) is a bark beetle species that recently invaded China from its native range in North America. It is associated with ophiostomatalean fungi in both locations, although the fungi have previously been well-surveyed only in China. We surveyed the ophiostomatalean fungi associated with D. valens in eastern and western North America, and identified the fungal species using multi-gene phylogenies. From the 307 collected isolates (147 in eastern North America and 160 in western North America), we identified 20 species: 11 in eastern North America and 13 in western North America. Four species were shared between eastern North America and western North America, one species (Ophiostoma floccosum) was shared between western North America and China, and three species (Grosmannia koreana, Leptographium procerum, and Ophiostoma abietinum) were shared between eastern North America and China. Ophiostoma floccosum and O. abietinum have worldwide distributions, and were rarely isolated from D. valens. However, G. koreana and L. procerum are primarily limited to Asia and North America respectively. Leptographium procerum, which is thought to be native to North America, represented >45% of the symbionts of D. valens in eastern North America and China, suggesting D. valens may have been introduced to China from eastern North America. These results are surprising, as previous population genetics studies on D. valens based on the cytochrome oxidase I gene have suggested that the insect was introduced into China from western North America.

  9. Large shift in symbiont assemblage in the invasive red turpentine beetle.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen J Taerum

    Full Text Available Changes in symbiont assemblages can affect the success and impact of invasive species, and may provide knowledge regarding the invasion histories of their vectors. Bark beetle symbioses are ideal systems to study changes in symbiont assemblages resulting from invasions. The red turpentine beetle (Dendroctonus valens is a bark beetle species that recently invaded China from its native range in North America. It is associated with ophiostomatalean fungi in both locations, although the fungi have previously been well-surveyed only in China. We surveyed the ophiostomatalean fungi associated with D. valens in eastern and western North America, and identified the fungal species using multi-gene phylogenies. From the 307 collected isolates (147 in eastern North America and 160 in western North America, we identified 20 species: 11 in eastern North America and 13 in western North America. Four species were shared between eastern North America and western North America, one species (Ophiostoma floccosum was shared between western North America and China, and three species (Grosmannia koreana, Leptographium procerum, and Ophiostoma abietinum were shared between eastern North America and China. Ophiostoma floccosum and O. abietinum have worldwide distributions, and were rarely isolated from D. valens. However, G. koreana and L. procerum are primarily limited to Asia and North America respectively. Leptographium procerum, which is thought to be native to North America, represented >45% of the symbionts of D. valens in eastern North America and China, suggesting D. valens may have been introduced to China from eastern North America. These results are surprising, as previous population genetics studies on D. valens based on the cytochrome oxidase I gene have suggested that the insect was introduced into China from western North America.

  10. Diversity, Bacterial Symbionts and Antibacterial Potential of Gut-Associated Fungi Isolated from the Pantala flavescens Larvae in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shao, Ming-Wei; Lu, Yi-Hui; Miao, Shuang; Zhang, Yun; Chen, Ting-Ting; Zhang, Ying-Lao

    2015-01-01

    The diversity of fungi associated with the gut of Pantala flavescens larvae was investigated using a culture-dependent method and molecular identification based on an analysis of the internally transcribed spacer sequence. In total, 48 fungal isolates were obtained from P. flavescens larvae. Based on phylogenetic analyses, the fungal isolates were grouped in 5 classes and 12 different genera. Fourteen bacterial 16S rDNA sequences derived from total genomic DNA extractions of fungal mycelia were obtained. The majority of the sequences were associated with Proteobacteria (13/14), and one Bacillaceae (1/14) was included. Leclercia sp., Oceanobacillus oncorhynchi and Methylobacterium extorquens, were reported for the first time as bacterial endosymbionts in fungi. High-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) analysis indicated that bacterial symbionts produced specific metabolites and also exerted an inhibitory effect on fungal metabolites. The biological activity of the fungal culture extracts against the pathogenic bacteria Staphylococcus aureus (ATCC 6538), Bacillus subtilis (ATCC 6633) and Escherichia coli (ATCC 8739) was investigated, and 20 extracts (42%) exhibited antibacterial activity against at least one of the tested bacterial strains. This study is the first report on the diversity and antibacterial activity of symbiotic fungi residing in the gut of P. flavescens larvae, and the results show that these fungi are highly diverse and could be exploited as a potential source of bioactive compounds.

  11. Molecular evidence for host-symbiont specificity in soritid foraminifera.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Cuetos, Lydia; Pochon, Xavier; Pawlowski, Jan

    2005-12-01

    Symbiosis between the dinoflagellate genus Symbiodinium and various invertebrates and protists is an ubiquitous phenomenon in shallow tropical and subtropical waters. Molecular studies undertaken on cnidarian symbionts revealed the presence of several distinctive lineages or subgeneric clades of Symbiodinium whose taxonomic level provides limited information about the specificity between invertebrate hosts and their symbionts. This contrasts with the finding of several Symbiodinium clades being present almost exclusively in foraminifera and belonging to the subfamily Soritinae. To test whether such specificity also exists at a lower taxonomic level within Soritinae, we obtained the SSU rDNA sequences from 159 soritid individuals collected in nine localities worldwide and representing all known morphospecies of this subfamily. For each individual, the symbionts were determined either by sequencing or by RFLP analysis. We distinguished 22 phylotypes of Soritinae in relation with a number of symbiont "groups" corresponding to 3 clades and 5 subclades of Symbiodinium. Among the 22 soritid phylotypes, 14 show strict symbiont specificity and only one was found to be a host for more than two "groups" of Symbiodinium. It is suggested that the strong host-symbiont specificity observed in Soritinae is a combined effect of a selective recognition mechanism, vertical transmission of symbionts, and biogeographical isolation.

  12. Addicted? Reduced host resistance in populations with defensive symbionts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cogni, Rodrigo; Cao, Chuan; Smith, Sophie; Illingworth, Christopher J. R.; Jiggins, Francis M.

    2016-01-01

    Heritable symbionts that protect their hosts from pathogens have been described in a wide range of insect species. By reducing the incidence or severity of infection, these symbionts have the potential to reduce the strength of selection on genes in the insect genome that increase resistance. Therefore, the presence of such symbionts may slow down the evolution of resistance. Here we investigated this idea by exposing Drosophila melanogaster populations to infection with the pathogenic Drosophila C virus (DCV) in the presence or absence of Wolbachia, a heritable symbiont of arthropods that confers protection against viruses. After nine generations of selection, we found that resistance to DCV had increased in all populations. However, in the presence of Wolbachia the resistant allele of pastrel—a gene that has a major effect on resistance to DCV—was at a lower frequency than in the symbiont-free populations. This finding suggests that defensive symbionts have the potential to hamper the evolution of insect resistance genes, potentially leading to a state of evolutionary addiction where the genetically susceptible insect host mostly relies on its symbiont to fight pathogens. PMID:27335421

  13. The symbiont side of symbiosis: do microbes really benefit?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Justine Rebecca Garcia

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Microbial associations are integral to all eukaryotes. Mutualism, the interaction of two species for the benefit of both, is an important aspect of microbial associations, with evidence that multicellular organisms in particular benefit from microbes. However, the microbe’s perspective has largely been ignored, and it is unknown whether most microbial symbionts benefit from their associations with hosts. It has been presumed that microbial symbionts receive host-derived nutrients or a competition-free environment with reduced predation, but there have been few empirical tests, or even critical assessments, of these assumptions. We evaluate these hypotheses based on available evidence, which indicate reduced competition and predation are not universal benefits for symbionts. Some symbionts do receive nutrients from their host, but this has not always been linked to a corresponding increase in symbiont fitness. We recommend experiments to test symbiont fitness using current experimental systems of symbiosis and detail considerations for other systems. Incorporating symbiont fitness into symbiosis research will provide insight into the evolution of mutualistic interactions and cooperation in general.

  14. Exploring the potential for actinobacteria as defensive symbionts in fungus-growing termites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Visser, Anna A.; Nobre, Tânia; Currie, Cameron R.

    2012-01-01

    In fungus-growing termites, fungi of the subgenus Pseudoxylaria threaten colony health through substrate competition with the termite fungus (Termitomyces). The potential mechanisms with which termites suppress Pseudoxylaria have remained unknown. Here we explore if Actinobacteria potentially play...... a role as defensive symbionts against Pseudoxylaria in fungus-growing termites. We sampled for Actinobacteria from 30 fungus-growing termite colonies, spanning the three main termite genera and two geographically distant sites. Our isolations yielded 360 Actinobacteria, from which we selected subsets......-growing termites, indicating lack of specificity. Antibiotic-activity screening of 288 isolates against the fungal cultivar and competitor revealed that most of the Actinobacteria-produced molecules with antifungal activity. A more detailed bioassay on 53 isolates, to test the specificity of antibiotics, showed...

  15. Variable interaction specificity and symbiont performance in Panamanian Trachymyrmex and Sericomyrmex fungus-growing ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    de Fine Licht, Henrik Hjarvard; Boomsma, Jacobus Jan

    2014-01-01

    ) ants produce carbohydrate active enzymes that degrade plant material collected by the ants and offer them food in exchange. The spectrum of these enzyme activities is an important symbiont service to the host but may vary among cultivar genotypes. The sympatric occurrence of several Trachymyrmex...... and Sericomyrmex higher attine ants in Gamboa, Panama provided the opportunity to do a quantitative study of species-level interaction-specificity. Results We genotyped the ants for Cytochrome Oxidase and their Leucoagaricus fungal cultivars for ITS rDNA. Combined with activity measurements for 12 carbohydrate......Background Cooperative benefits of mutualistic interactions are affected by genetic variation among the interacting partners, which may have consequences for interaction-specificities across guilds of sympatric species with similar mutualistic life histories. The gardens of fungus-growing (attine...

  16. Variation in fungal enzyme spectra may affect mutualistic division of labour between ants and fungus gardens

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    de Fine Licht, Henrik Hjarvard; Boomsma, Jacobus Jan

    range, and a paraphyletic assembly of Trachymyrmex and Sericomyrmex species that cultivate more genetically diverse fungal symbionts. Leaf-decomposition productivity of colonies depends on the combined efforts of ant foragers collecting and macerating plant material and fungal enzymes excreted directly...... partners vary in metabolic performance, division of labour may not always be optimized and co-evolutionary trajectories become less predictable. The higher fungus-growing (attine) ants consist of the leafcutter ants (Acromyrmex and Atta), which rear a single fungal species throughout their Latin American...... or indirectly via ant fecal fluid. We determined the interaction specificity between ant species and fungal strains across sympatric populations of six Trachymyrmex and Sericomyrmex species in Panama, and established that these ants jointly reared eight fungal haplotype groups that differed significantly...

  17. Symbiont-mediated RNA interference in insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitten, Miranda M A; Facey, Paul D; Del Sol, Ricardo; Fernández-Martínez, Lorena T; Evans, Meirwyn C; Mitchell, Jacob J; Bodger, Owen G; Dyson, Paul J

    2016-02-24

    RNA interference (RNAi) methods for insects are often limited by problems with double-stranded (ds) RNA delivery, which restricts reverse genetics studies and the development of RNAi-based biocides. We therefore delegated to insect symbiotic bacteria the task of: (i) constitutive dsRNA synthesis and (ii) trauma-free delivery. RNaseIII-deficient, dsRNA-expressing bacterial strains were created from the symbionts of two very diverse pest species: a long-lived blood-sucking bug, Rhodnius prolixus, and a short-lived globally invasive polyphagous agricultural pest, western flower thrips (Frankliniella occidentalis). When ingested, the manipulated bacteria colonized the insects, successfully competed with the wild-type microflora, and sustainably mediated systemic knockdown phenotypes that were horizontally transmissible. This represents a significant advance in the ability to deliver RNAi, potentially to a large range of non-model insects.

  18. Earthworm ecology affects the population structure of their Verminephrobacter symbionts

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Macedo Viana, Flavia Daniela; Jensen, Christopher Erik; Macey, Michael;

    2016-01-01

    from two contrasting ecological types of earthworm hosts: the high population density, fast reproducing compost worms, Eisenia andrei and E. fetida, and the low-density, slow reproducing Aporrectodea tuberculata, commonly found in garden soils; for both types, three distinct populations were...... investigated. Based on MLST of 193 Verminephrobacter isolates, the symbiont community in each worm individual was very homogeneous. The more solitary A. tuberculata carried unique symbiont populations in 9 out of 10 host individuals, whereas the symbiont populations in the social compost worms were homogeneous...

  19. Ectomycorrhizal fungal richness declines towards the host species' range edge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lankau, Richard A; Keymer, Daniel P

    2016-07-01

    Plant range boundaries are generally considered to reflect abiotic conditions; however, a rise in negative or decline in positive species interactions at range margins may contribute to these stable boundaries. While evidence suggests that pollinator mutualisms may decline near range boundaries, little is known about other important plant mutualisms, including microbial root symbionts. Here, we used molecular methods to characterize root-associated fungal communities in populations of two related temperate tree species from across the species' range in the eastern United States. We found that ectomycorrhizal fungal richness on plant roots declined with distance from the centre of the host species range. These patterns were not evident in nonmycorrhizal fungal communities on roots nor in fungal communities in bulk soil. Climatic and soil chemical variables could not explain these biogeographic patterns, although these abiotic gradients affected other components of the bulk soil and rhizosphere fungal community. Depauperate ectomycorrhizal fungal communities may represent an underappreciated challenge to marginal tree populations, especially as rapid climate change pushes these populations outside their current climate niche.

  20. Population structure of mountain pine beetle symbiont Leptographium longiclavatum and the implication on the multipartite beetle-fungi relationships.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clement Kin-Ming Tsui

    Full Text Available Over 18 million ha of forests have been destroyed in the past decade in Canada by the mountain pine beetle (MPB and its fungal symbionts. Understanding their population dynamics is critical to improving modeling of beetle epidemics and providing potential clues to predict population expansion. Leptographium longiclavatum and Grosmannia clavigera are fungal symbionts of MPB that aid the beetle to colonize and kill their pine hosts. We investigated the genetic structure and demographic expansion of L. longiclavatum in populations established within the historic distribution range and in the newly colonized regions. We identified three genetic clusters/populations that coincide with independent geographic locations. The genetic profiles of the recently established populations in northern British Columbia (BC and Alberta suggest that they originated from central and southern BC. Approximate Bayesian Computation supports the scenario that this recent expansion represents an admixture of individuals originating from BC and the Rocky Mountains. Highly significant correlations were found among genetic distance matrices of L. longiclavatum, G. clavigera, and MPB. This highlights the concordance of demographic processes in these interacting organisms sharing a highly specialized niche and supports the hypothesis of long-term multipartite beetle-fungus co-evolutionary history and mutualistic relationships.

  1. Population structure of mountain pine beetle symbiont Leptographium longiclavatum and the implication on the multipartite beetle-fungi relationships.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsui, Clement Kin-Ming; Farfan, Lina; Roe, Amanda D; Rice, Adrianne V; Cooke, Janice E K; El-Kassaby, Yousry A; Hamelin, Richard C

    2014-01-01

    Over 18 million ha of forests have been destroyed in the past decade in Canada by the mountain pine beetle (MPB) and its fungal symbionts. Understanding their population dynamics is critical to improving modeling of beetle epidemics and providing potential clues to predict population expansion. Leptographium longiclavatum and Grosmannia clavigera are fungal symbionts of MPB that aid the beetle to colonize and kill their pine hosts. We investigated the genetic structure and demographic expansion of L. longiclavatum in populations established within the historic distribution range and in the newly colonized regions. We identified three genetic clusters/populations that coincide with independent geographic locations. The genetic profiles of the recently established populations in northern British Columbia (BC) and Alberta suggest that they originated from central and southern BC. Approximate Bayesian Computation supports the scenario that this recent expansion represents an admixture of individuals originating from BC and the Rocky Mountains. Highly significant correlations were found among genetic distance matrices of L. longiclavatum, G. clavigera, and MPB. This highlights the concordance of demographic processes in these interacting organisms sharing a highly specialized niche and supports the hypothesis of long-term multipartite beetle-fungus co-evolutionary history and mutualistic relationships.

  2. Tracking transmission of apicomplexan symbionts in diverse Caribbean corals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nathan L Kirk

    Full Text Available Symbionts in each generation are transmitted to new host individuals either vertically (parent to offspring, horizontally (from exogenous sources, or a combination of both. Scleractinian corals make an excellent study system for understanding patterns of symbiont transmission since they harbor diverse symbionts and possess distinct reproductive modes of either internal brooding or external broadcast spawning that generally correlate with vertical or horizontal transmission, respectively. Here, we focused on the under-recognized, but apparently widespread, coral-associated apicomplexans (Protista: Alveolata to determine if symbiont transmission depends on host reproductive mode. Specifically, a PCR-based assay was utilized towards identifying whether planula larvae and reproductive adults from brooding and broadcast spawning scleractinian coral species in Florida and Belize harbored apicomplexan DNA. Nearly all (85.5%; n = 85/89 examined planulae of five brooding species (Porites astreoides, Agaricia tenuifolia, Agaricia agaricites, Favia fragum, Mycetophyllia ferox and adults of P. astreoides were positive for apicomplexan DNA. In contrast, no (n = 0/10 apicomplexan DNA was detected from planulae of four broadcast spawning species (Acropora cervicornis, Acropora palmata, Pseudodiploria strigosa, and Orbicella faveolata and rarely in gametes (8.9%; n = 5/56 of these species sampled from the same geographical range as the brooding species. In contrast, tissue samples from nearly all (92.0%; n = 81/88 adults of the broadcast spawning species A. cervicornis, A. palmata and O. faveolata harbored apicomplexan DNA, including colonies whose gametes and planulae tested negative for these symbionts. Taken together, these data suggest apicomplexans are transmitted vertically in these brooding scleractinian coral species while the broadcast spawning scleractinian species examined here acquire these symbionts horizontally. Notably, these transmission

  3. Tracking Transmission of Apicomplexan Symbionts in Diverse Caribbean Corals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirk, Nathan L.; Ritson-Williams, Raphael; Coffroth, Mary Alice; Miller, Margaret W.; Fogarty, Nicole D.; Santos, Scott R.

    2013-01-01

    Symbionts in each generation are transmitted to new host individuals either vertically (parent to offspring), horizontally (from exogenous sources), or a combination of both. Scleractinian corals make an excellent study system for understanding patterns of symbiont transmission since they harbor diverse symbionts and possess distinct reproductive modes of either internal brooding or external broadcast spawning that generally correlate with vertical or horizontal transmission, respectively. Here, we focused on the under-recognized, but apparently widespread, coral-associated apicomplexans (Protista: Alveolata) to determine if symbiont transmission depends on host reproductive mode. Specifically, a PCR-based assay was utilized towards identifying whether planula larvae and reproductive adults from brooding and broadcast spawning scleractinian coral species in Florida and Belize harbored apicomplexan DNA. Nearly all (85.5%; n = 85/89) examined planulae of five brooding species (Porites astreoides, Agaricia tenuifolia, Agaricia agaricites, Favia fragum, Mycetophyllia ferox) and adults of P. astreoides were positive for apicomplexan DNA. In contrast, no (n = 0/10) apicomplexan DNA was detected from planulae of four broadcast spawning species (Acropora cervicornis, Acropora palmata, Pseudodiploria strigosa, and Orbicella faveolata) and rarely in gametes (8.9%; n = 5/56) of these species sampled from the same geographical range as the brooding species. In contrast, tissue samples from nearly all (92.0%; n = 81/88) adults of the broadcast spawning species A. cervicornis, A. palmata and O. faveolata harbored apicomplexan DNA, including colonies whose gametes and planulae tested negative for these symbionts. Taken together, these data suggest apicomplexans are transmitted vertically in these brooding scleractinian coral species while the broadcast spawning scleractinian species examined here acquire these symbionts horizontally. Notably, these transmission patterns are

  4. Tracking transmission of apicomplexan symbionts in diverse Caribbean corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirk, Nathan L; Ritson-Williams, Raphael; Coffroth, Mary Alice; Miller, Margaret W; Fogarty, Nicole D; Santos, Scott R

    2013-01-01

    Symbionts in each generation are transmitted to new host individuals either vertically (parent to offspring), horizontally (from exogenous sources), or a combination of both. Scleractinian corals make an excellent study system for understanding patterns of symbiont transmission since they harbor diverse symbionts and possess distinct reproductive modes of either internal brooding or external broadcast spawning that generally correlate with vertical or horizontal transmission, respectively. Here, we focused on the under-recognized, but apparently widespread, coral-associated apicomplexans (Protista: Alveolata) to determine if symbiont transmission depends on host reproductive mode. Specifically, a PCR-based assay was utilized towards identifying whether planula larvae and reproductive adults from brooding and broadcast spawning scleractinian coral species in Florida and Belize harbored apicomplexan DNA. Nearly all (85.5%; n = 85/89) examined planulae of five brooding species (Porites astreoides, Agaricia tenuifolia, Agaricia agaricites, Favia fragum, Mycetophyllia ferox) and adults of P. astreoides were positive for apicomplexan DNA. In contrast, no (n = 0/10) apicomplexan DNA was detected from planulae of four broadcast spawning species (Acropora cervicornis, Acropora palmata, Pseudodiploria strigosa, and Orbicella faveolata) and rarely in gametes (8.9%; n = 5/56) of these species sampled from the same geographical range as the brooding species. In contrast, tissue samples from nearly all (92.0%; n = 81/88) adults of the broadcast spawning species A. cervicornis, A. palmata and O. faveolata harbored apicomplexan DNA, including colonies whose gametes and planulae tested negative for these symbionts. Taken together, these data suggest apicomplexans are transmitted vertically in these brooding scleractinian coral species while the broadcast spawning scleractinian species examined here acquire these symbionts horizontally. Notably, these transmission patterns are

  5. Symbiont modulates expression of specific gene categories in Angomonas deanei

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luciana Loureiro Penha

    Full Text Available Trypanosomatids are parasites that cause disease in humans, animals, and plants. Most are non-pathogenic and some harbor a symbiotic bacterium. Endosymbiosis is part of the evolutionary process of vital cell functions such as respiration and photosynthesis. Angomonas deanei is an example of a symbiont-containing trypanosomatid. In this paper, we sought to investigate how symbionts influence host cells by characterising and comparing the transcriptomes of the symbiont-containing A. deanei (wild type and the symbiont-free aposymbiotic strains. The comparison revealed that the presence of the symbiont modulates several differentially expressed genes. Empirical analysis of differential gene expression showed that 216 of the 7625 modulated genes were significantly changed. Finally, gene set enrichment analysis revealed that the largest categories of genes that downregulated in the absence of the symbiont were those involved in oxidation-reduction process, ATP hydrolysis coupled proton transport and glycolysis. In contrast, among the upregulated gene categories were those involved in proteolysis, microtubule-based movement, and cellular metabolic process. Our results provide valuable information for dissecting the mechanism of endosymbiosis in A. deanei.

  6. Entomopathogenic fungal endophytes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fungal endophytes are quite common in nature and some of them have been shown to have adverse effects against insects, nematodes, and plant pathogens. An introduction to fungal endophytes will be presented, followed by a discussion of research aimed at introducing Beauveria bassiana as a fungal endo...

  7. Contact and voter processes on the infinite percolation cluster as models of host-symbiont interactions

    CERN Document Server

    Bertacchi, Daniela; Zucca, Fabio

    2009-01-01

    We introduce spatially explicit stochastic processes to model multispecies hostsymbiont interactions. The host environment is static, modeled by the infinite percolation cluster of site percolation. Symbionts evolve on the infinite cluster through contact or voter type interactions, where each host may be infected by a colony of symbionts. In the presence of a single symbiont species, the condition for invasion as a function of the density of the habitat of hosts and the maximal size of the colonies is investigated in details. In the presence of multiple symbiont species, it is proved that the community of symbionts clusters in two dimensions whereas symbiont species may coexist in higher dimensions.

  8. The use of genomics and metabolomics methods to quantify fungal endosymbionts and alkaloids in grasses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rasmussen, Susanne; Lane, Geoffrey A; Mace, Wade; Parsons, Anthony J; Fraser, Karl; Xue, Hong

    2012-01-01

    The association of plants with endosymbiotic micro-organisms poses a particular challenge to metabolomics studies. The presence of endosymbionts can alter metabolic profiles of plant tissues by introducing non-plant metabolites such as fungal specific alkaloids, and by metabolic interactions between the two organisms. An accurate quantification of the endosymbiont and its metabolites is therefore critical for studies of interactions between the two symbionts and the environment.Here, we describe methods that allow the quantification of the ryegrass Neotyphodium lolii fungal endosymbiont and major alkaloids in its host plant Lolium perenne. Fungal concentrations were quantified in total genomic DNA (gDNA) isolated from infected plant tissues by quantitative PCR (qPCR) using primers specific for chitinase A from N. lolii. To quantify the fungal alkaloids, we describe LC-MS based methods which provide coverage of a wide range of alkaloids of the indolediterpene and ergot alkaloid classes, together with peramine.

  9. Drosophila Adaptation to Viral Infection through Defensive Symbiont Evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faria, Vitor G.; Magalhães, Sara; Paulo, Tânia F.; Nolte, Viola; Schlötterer, Christian

    2016-01-01

    Microbial symbionts can modulate host interactions with biotic and abiotic factors. Such interactions may affect the evolutionary trajectories of both host and symbiont. Wolbachia protects Drosophila melanogaster against several viral infections and the strength of the protection varies between variants of this endosymbiont. Since Wolbachia is maternally transmitted, its fitness depends on the fitness of its host. Therefore, Wolbachia populations may be under selection when Drosophila is subjected to viral infection. Here we show that in D. melanogaster populations selected for increased survival upon infection with Drosophila C virus there is a strong selection coefficient for specific Wolbachia variants, leading to their fixation. Flies carrying these selected Wolbachia variants have higher survival and fertility upon viral infection when compared to flies with the other variants. These findings demonstrate how the interaction of a host with pathogens shapes the genetic composition of symbiont populations. Furthermore, host adaptation can result from the evolution of its symbionts, with host and symbiont functioning as a single evolutionary unit. PMID:27684942

  10. Host-Symbiont Interactions for Potentially Managing Heteropteran Pests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simone Souza Prado

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Insects in the suborder Heteroptera, the so-called true bugs, include over 40,000 species worldwide. This insect group includes many important agricultural pests and disease vectors, which often have bacterial symbionts associated with them. Some symbionts have coevolved with their hosts to the extent that host fitness is compromised with the removal or alteration of their symbiont. The first bug/microbial interactions were discovered over 50 years ago. Only recently, mainly due to advances in molecular techniques, has the nature of these associations become clearer. Some researchers have pursued the genetic modification (paratransgenesis of symbionts for disease control or pest management. With the increasing interest and understanding of the bug/symbiont associations and their ecological and physiological features, it will only be a matter of time before pest/vector control programs utilize this information and technique. This paper will focus on recent discoveries of the major symbiotic systems in Heteroptera, highlighting how the understanding of the evolutionary and biological aspects of these relationships may lead to the development of alternative techniques for efficient heteropteran pest control and suppression of diseases vectored by Heteroptera.

  11. The Brucella suis Genome Reveals Fundamental Similarities between Animal and Plant Pathogens and Symbionts

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Ian T. Paulsen; Rekha Seshadri; Karen E. Nelson; Jonathan A. Eisen; John F. Heidelberg; Timothy D. Read; Robert J. Dodson; Lowell Umayam; Lauren M. Brinkac; Maureen J. Beanan; Sean C. Daugherty; Robert T. Deboy; A. Scott Durkin; James F. Kolonay; Ramana Madupu; William C. Nelson; Bola Ayodeji; Margaret Kraul; Jyoti Shetty; Joel Malek; Susan E. van Aken; Steven Riedmuller; Herve Tettelin; Steven R. Gill; Owen White; Steven L. Salzberg; David L. Hoover; Luther E. Lindler; Shirley M. Halling; Stephen M. Boyle; Claire M. Fraser

    2002-01-01

    .... Extensive gene synteny between B. suis chromosome 1 and the genome of the plant symbiont Mesorhizobium loti emphasizes the similarity between this animal pathogen and plant pathogens and symbionts...

  12. Exploring the potential for actinobacteria as defensive symbionts in fungus-growing termites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Visser, Anna A; Nobre, Tânia; Currie, Cameron R; Aanen, Duur K; Poulsen, Michael

    2012-05-01

    In fungus-growing termites, fungi of the subgenus Pseudoxylaria threaten colony health through substrate competition with the termite fungus (Termitomyces). The potential mechanisms with which termites suppress Pseudoxylaria have remained unknown. Here we explore if Actinobacteria potentially play a role as defensive symbionts against Pseudoxylaria in fungus-growing termites. We sampled for Actinobacteria from 30 fungus-growing termite colonies, spanning the three main termite genera and two geographically distant sites. Our isolations yielded 360 Actinobacteria, from which we selected subsets for morphological (288 isolates, grouped in 44 morphotypes) and for 16S rRNA (35 isolates, spanning the majority of morphotypes) characterisation. Actinobacteria were found throughout all sampled nests and colony parts and, phylogenetically, they are interspersed with Actinobacteria from origins other than fungus-growing termites, indicating lack of specificity. Antibiotic-activity screening of 288 isolates against the fungal cultivar and competitor revealed that most of the Actinobacteria-produced molecules with antifungal activity. A more detailed bioassay on 53 isolates, to test the specificity of antibiotics, showed that many Actinobacteria inhibit both Pseudoxylaria and Termitomyces, and that the cultivar fungus generally is more susceptible to inhibition than the competitor. This suggests that either defensive symbionts are not present in the system or that they, if present, represent a subset of the community isolated. If so, the antibiotics must be used in a targeted fashion, being applied to specific areas by the termites. We describe the first discovery of an assembly of antibiotic-producing Actinobacteria occurring in fungus-growing termite nests. However, due to the diversity found, and the lack of both phylogenetic and bioactivity specificity, further work is necessary for a better understanding of the putative role of antibiotic-producing bacteria in the fungus

  13. Metagenomic Analysis of Microbial Symbionts in a Gutless Worm

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Woyke, Tanja; Teeling, Hanno; Ivanova, Natalia N.; Hunteman, Marcel; Richter, Michael; Gloeckner, Frank Oliver; Boeffelli, Dario; Barry, Kerrie W.; Shapiro, Harris J.; Anderson, Iain J.; Szeto, Ernest; Kyrpides, Nikos C.; Mussmann, Marc; Amann, Rudolf; Bergin, Claudia; Ruehland, Caroline; Rubin, Edward M.; Dubilier, Nicole

    2006-05-01

    Symbioses between bacteria and eukaryotes are ubiquitous, yet our understanding of the interactions driving these associations is hampered by our inability to cultivate most host-associated microbes. Here we use a metagenomic approach to describe four co-occurring symbionts from the marine oligochaete Olavius algarvensis, a worm lacking a mouth, gut and nephridia. Shotgun sequencing and metabolic pathway reconstruction revealed that the symbionts are sulphur-oxidizing and sulphate-reducing bacteria, all of which are capable of carbon fixation, thus providing the host with multiple sources of nutrition. Molecular evidence for the uptake and recycling of worm waste products by the symbionts suggests how the worm could eliminate its excretory system, an adaptation unique among annelid worms. We propose a model that describes how the versatile metabolism within this symbiotic consortium provides the host with an optimal energy supply as it shuttles between the upper oxic and lower anoxic coastal sediments that it inhabits.

  14. Almost there: transmission routes of bacterial symbionts between trophic levels.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elad Chiel

    Full Text Available Many intracellular microbial symbionts of arthropods are strictly vertically transmitted and manipulate their host's reproduction in ways that enhance their own transmission. Rare horizontal transmission events are nonetheless necessary for symbiont spread to novel host lineages. Horizontal transmission has been mostly inferred from phylogenetic studies but the mechanisms of spread are still largely a mystery. Here, we investigated transmission of two distantly related bacterial symbionts--Rickettsia and Hamiltonella--from their host, the sweet potato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci, to three species of whitefly parasitoids: Eretmocerus emiratus, Eretmocerus eremicus and Encarsia pergandiella. We also examined the potential for vertical transmission of these whitefly symbionts between parasitoid generations. Using florescence in situ hybridization (FISH and transmission electron microscopy we found that Rickettsia invades Eretmocerus larvae during development in a Rickettsia-infected host, persists in adults and in females, reaches the ovaries. However, Rickettsia does not appear to penetrate the oocytes, but instead is localized in the follicular epithelial cells only. Consequently, Rickettsia is not vertically transmitted in Eretmocerus wasps, a result supported by diagnostic polymerase chain reaction (PCR. In contrast, Rickettsia proved to be merely transient in the digestive tract of Encarsia and was excreted with the meconia before wasp pupation. Adults of all three parasitoid species frequently acquired Rickettsia via contact with infected whiteflies, most likely by feeding on the host hemolymph (host feeding, but the rate of infection declined sharply within a few days of wasps being removed from infected whiteflies. In contrast with Rickettsia, Hamiltonella did not establish in any of the parasitoids tested, and none of the parasitoids acquired Hamiltonella by host feeding. This study demonstrates potential routes and barriers to horizontal

  15. Physical proximity may promote lateral acquisition of bacterial symbionts in vesicomyid clams.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carole Decker

    Full Text Available Vesicomyid clams harbor intracellular sulfur-oxidizing bacteria that are predominantly maternally inherited and co-speciate with their hosts. Genome recombination and the occurrence of non-parental strains were recently demonstrated in symbionts. However, mechanisms favoring such events remain to be identified. In this study, we investigated symbionts in two phylogenetically distant vesicomyid species, Christineconcha regab and Laubiericoncha chuni, which sometimes co-occur at a cold-seep site in the Gulf of Guinea. We showed that each of the two species harbored a single dominant bacterial symbiont strain. However, for both vesicomyid species, the symbiont from the other species was occasionally detected in the gills using fluorescence in situ hybridization and gene sequences analyses based on six symbiont marker genes. Symbiont strains co-occurred within a single host only at sites where both host species were found; whereas one single symbiont strain was detected in C. regab specimens from a site where no L. chuni individuals had been observed. These results suggest that physical proximity favored the acquisition of non-parental symbiont strains in Vesicomyidae. Over evolutionary time, this could potentially lead to genetic exchanges among symbiont species and eventually symbiont displacement. Symbiont densities estimated using 3D fluorescence in situ hybridization varied among host species and sites, suggesting flexibility in the association despite the fact that a similar type of metabolism is expected in all symbionts.

  16. Evolutionary replacement of obligate symbionts in an ancient and diverse insect lineage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koga, Ryuichi; Bennett, Gordon M; Cryan, Jason R; Moran, Nancy A

    2013-07-01

    Many insect groups depend on ancient obligate symbioses with bacteria that undergo long-term genomic degradation due to inactivation and loss of ancestral genes. Sap-feeding insects in the hemipteran suborder Auchenorrhyncha show complex symbioses with at least two obligate bacterial symbionts, inhabiting specialized host cells (bacteriocytes). We explored the symbiotic relationships of the spittlebugs (Auchenorrhyncha: Cercopoidea) using phylogenetic and microscopy methods. Results show that most spittlebugs contain the symbionts Sulcia muelleri (Bacteroidetes) and Zinderia insecticola (Betaproteobacteria) with each restricted to its own bacteriocyte type. However, the ancestral Zinderia symbiont has been replaced with a novel symbiont closely related to Sodalis glossinidius (Enterobacteriaceae) in members of the ecologically successful spittlebug tribe Philaenini. At least one spittlebug species retains Sulcia and Zinderia, but also has acquired a Sodalis-like symbiont, possibly representing a transitional stage in the evolutionary succession of symbioses. Phylogenetic analyses including symbionts of other Auchenorrhyncha lineages suggest that Zinderia, like Sulcia, descends from an ancestral symbiont present in the common ancestor of Auchenorrhyncha. This betaproteobacterial symbiont has been repeatedly replaced by other symbionts, such as the Sodalis-like symbiont of spittlebugs. Symbiont replacement may offer a route for hosts to escape dependence on an ancient, degraded and potentially inefficient symbiont. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd and Society for Applied Microbiology.

  17. Freshwater Fungal Infections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dennis J. Baumgardner

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Fungal infections as a result of freshwater exposure or trauma are fortunately rare. Etiologic agents are varied, but commonly include filamentous fungi and Candida. This narrative review describes various sources of potential freshwater fungal exposure and the diseases that may result, including fungal keratitis, acute otitis externa and tinea pedis, as well as rare deep soft tissue or bone infections and pulmonary or central nervous system infections following traumatic freshwater exposure during natural disasters or near-drowning episodes. Fungal etiology should be suspected in appropriate scenarios when bacterial cultures or molecular tests are normal or when the infection worsens or fails to resolve with appropriate antibacterial therapy.

  18. Fungal endophyte increases the allelopathic effects of an invasive forb.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aschehoug, Erik T; Callaway, Ragan M; Newcombe, George; Tharayil, Nishanth; Chen, Shuyan

    2014-05-01

    Endophytic plant symbionts can have powerful effects on the way their hosts interact with pathogens, competitors, and consumers. The presence of endophytes in plants can alter food webs, community composition and ecosystem processes, suggesting that endophyte-plant symbioses may represent unique forms of extended phenotypes. We tested the impact of the fungal endophyte Alternaria alternata (phylotype CID 120) on the allelopathic effect of the invasive forb Centaurea stoebe when in competition with the North American native bunchgrass Koeleria macrantha in a greenhouse competition experiment. The allelopathic effect of C. stoebe on K. macrantha when infected with the fungal endophyte was more than twice that of endophyte-free C. stoebe. However, this allelopathic effect was a small part of the very large competitive effect of C. stoebe on K. macrantha in all treatments, likely because of the priority effects in our experimental design. To our knowledge, these results are the first experimental evidence for a symbiotic relationship between plants and fungal endophytes affecting allelopathic interactions between competing plants, and thus provide insight into the mechanisms by which fungal endophytes may increase the competitive ability of their hosts.

  19. Symbiotic lifestyle expression by fungal endophytes and the adaptation of plants to stress: unraveling the complexities of intimacy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Redman, Regina S.; Henson, Joan M.; Rodriguez, Russell J.

    2005-01-01

    The fossil record indicates that fungal symbionts have been associated with plants since the Ordovician period (approximately 400 million years ago), when plants first became established on land (Pirozynski and Malloch, 1975; Redecker et al., 2000; Remy et al., 1994; Simon et al., 1993). Transitioning from aquatic to terrestrial habitats likely presented plants with new stresses, including periods of desiccation. Since symbiotic fungi are known to confer drought tolerance to plants (Bacon, 1993; Read and Camp, 1986), it has been suggested that fungal symbiosis was involved with or responsible for the establishment of land plants (Pirozynski and Malloch, 1975). Symbiosis was first defined by De Bary in 1879, and since that time, all plants in natural ecosystems have been found to be colonized with fungal and bacterial symbionts. It is clear that individual plants represent symbiotic communities with microorganisms associated in or on tissues below- and aboveground.There are two major classes of fungal symbionts associated with internal plant tissues: fungal endophytes that reside entirely within plants and may be associated with roots, stems leaves, or flowers; and mycorrhizal fungi that reside only in roots but extend out into the rhizosphere. In addition, fungal endophytes may be divided into two classes: (1) a relatively small number of fastidious species that are limited to a few monocot hosts (Clay and Schardl, 2002), and (2) a large number of tractable species with broad host ranges, including both monocots and eudicots (Stone et al., 2000). While significant resources and research have been invested in mycorrhizae and class 1 endophytes, comparatively little is known about class 2 endophytes, which may represent the largest group of fungal symbionts. This is partially because the symbiotic functionalities of class 2 endophytes have only recently been elucidated and shown to be responsible for the adaptation of some plants to high-stress environments (Redman

  20. The prominent role of fungi and fungal enzymes in the ant-fungus biomass conversion symbiosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lange, L; Grell, M N

    2014-06-01

    Molecular studies have added significantly to understanding of the role of fungi and fungal enzymes in the efficient biomass conversion, which takes place in the fungus garden of leaf-cutting ants. It is now clear that the fungal symbiont expresses the full spectrum of genes for degrading cellulose and other plant cell wall polysaccharides. Since the start of the genomics era, numerous interesting studies have especially focused on evolutionary, molecular, and organismal aspects of the biological and biochemical functions of the symbiosis between leaf-cutting ants (Atta spp. and Acromyrmex spp.) and their fungal symbiont Leucoagaricus gongylophorus. Macroscopic observations of the fungus-farming ant colony inherently depict the ants as the leading part of the symbiosis (the myrmicocentric approach, overshadowing the mycocentric aspects). However, at the molecular level, it is fungal enzymes that enable the ants to access the nutrition embedded in recalcitrant plant biomass. Our hypothesis is that the evolutionary events that established fungus-farming practice were predisposed by a fascinating fungal evolution toward increasing attractiveness to ants. This resulted in the ants allowing the fungus to grow in the nests and began to supply plant materials for more fungal growth. Molecular studies also confirm that specialized fungal structures, the gongylidia, with high levels of proteins and rich blend of enzymes, are essential for symbiosis. Harvested and used as ant feed, the gongylidia are the key factor for sustaining the highly complex leaf-cutting ant colony. This microbial upgrade of fresh leaves to protein-enriched animal feed can serve as inspiration for modern biorefinery technology.

  1. Ankyrin-repeat proteins from sponge symbionts modulate amoebal phagocytosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Mary T H D; Liu, Michael; Thomas, Torsten

    2014-03-01

    Bacteria-eukaryote symbiosis occurs in all stages of evolution, from simple amoebae to mammals, and from facultative to obligate associations. Sponges are ancient metazoans that form intimate symbiotic interactions with complex communities of bacteria. The basic nutritional requirements of the sponge are in part satisfied by the phagocytosis of bacterial food particles from the surrounding water. How bacterial symbionts, which are permanently associated with the sponge, survive in the presence of phagocytic cells is largely unknown. Here, we present the discovery of a genomic fragment from an uncultured gamma-proteobacterial sponge symbiont that encodes for four proteins, whose closest known relatives are found in a sponge genome. Through recombinant approaches, we show that these four eukaryotic-like, ankyrin-repeat proteins (ARP) when expressed in Eschericha coli can modulate phagocytosis of amoebal cells and lead to accumulation of bacteria in the phagosome. Mechanistically, two ARPs appear to interfere with phagosome development in a similar way to reduced vacuole acidification, by blocking the fusion of the early phagosome with the lysosome and its digestive enzymes. Our results show that ARP from sponge symbionts can function to interfere with phagocytosis, and we postulate that this might be one mechanism by which symbionts can escape digestion in a sponge host.

  2. Understanding nutrient exchange between Azolla and its symbiont, Nostoc

    OpenAIRE

    Eily, Ariana

    2017-01-01

    This is an in-depth look at the research I am doing for my doctoral degree at Duke University, investigating the exchange of nutrients between the aquatic fern genus, Azolla, and its cyanobacterial symbiont, Nostoc azollae. All of the illustrations and microscopy images within this presentation are my own.

  3. Complete Genome Sequence of the Human Gut Symbiont Roseburia hominis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Travis, Anthony J.; Kelly, Denise; Flint, Harry J;

    2015-01-01

    We report here the complete genome sequence of the human gut symbiont Roseburia hominis A2-183(T) (= DSM 16839(T) = NCIMB 14029(T)), isolated from human feces. The genome is represented by a 3,592,125-bp chromosome with 3,405 coding sequences. A number of potential functions contributing to host-...

  4. Highly infectious symbiont dominates initial uptake in coral juveniles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abrego, David; VAN Oppen, Madeleine J H; Willis, Bette L

    2009-08-01

    The majority of reef-building corals acquire their obligate algal symbionts (Symbiodinium) from the environment. However, factors shaping the initial establishment of coral-algal symbioses, including parental effects, local environmental conditions and local availability of symbionts, are not well understood. This study monitored the uptake and maintenance of Symbiodinium in juveniles of two common corals, Acropora tenuis and Acropora millepora, that were reciprocally explanted between sites where adult colonies host different types of Symbiodinium. We found that coral juveniles were rapidly dominated by type D Symbiodinium, even though this type is not found in adult colonies (including the parental colonies) in four out of the five study populations. Furthermore, type D Symbiodinium was found in less than one-third of a wide range of coral species (n > 50) sampled at the two main study sites, suggesting that its dominance in the acroporid juveniles is not because it is the most abundant local endosymbiotic type. Moreover, dominance by type D was observed irrespective of the light intensity to which juveniles were exposed in a field study. In summary, despite its relatively low abundance in coral assemblages at the study sites and irrespective of the surrounding light environment, type D Symbiodinium is the main symbiont type initially acquired by juveniles of A. millepora and A. tenuis. We conclude that during early ontogeny in these corals, there are few barriers to the uptake of Symbiodinium types which differ from those found in parental colonies, resulting in dominance by a highly infectious and potentially opportunistic symbiont.

  5. A nuptially transmitted Ichthyosproean symbiont of Tenebrio molitor (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    The yellow mealworm, Tenebrio molitor, harbors a symbiont that has spores with a thick, laminated wall and infects the fat body and ventral nerve chord of adult and larval beetles. In adult males, there is heavy infection of the epithelial cells of the testes and between testes lobes with occasional...

  6. A Foray into Fungal Ecology: Understanding Fungi and Their Functions Across Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Francis, N.; Dunkirk, N. C.; Peay, K.

    2015-12-01

    Despite their incredible diversity and importance to terrestrial ecosystems, fungi are not included in a standard high school science curriculum. This past summer, however, my work for the Stanford EARTH High School Internship program introduced me to fungal ecology through experiments involving culturing, genomics and root dissections. The two fungal experiments I worked on had very different foci, both searching for answers to broad ecological questions of fungal function and physiology. The first, a symbiosis experiment, sought to determine if the partners of the nutrient exchange between pine trees and their fungal symbionts could choose one another. The second experiment, a dung fungal succession project, compared the genetic sequencing results of fungal extractions from dung versus fungal cultures from dung. My part in the symbiosis experiment involved dissection, weighing and encapsulation of root tissue samples characterized based on the root thickness and presence of ectomycorrhizal fungi. The dung fungi succession project required that I not only learn how to culture various genera of dung fungi but also learn how to extract DNA and RNA for sequencing from the fungal tissue. Although I primarily worked with dung fungi cultures and thereby learned about their unique physiologies, I also learned about the different types of genetic sequencing since the project compared sequences of cultured fungi versus Next Generation sequencing of all fungi present within a dung pellet. Through working on distinct fungal projects that reassess how information about fungi is known within the field of fungal ecology, I learned not only about the two experiments I worked on but also many past related experiments and inquiries through reading scientific papers. Thanks to my foray into fungal research, I now know not only the broader significance of fungi in ecological research but also how to design and conduct ecological experiments.

  7. Cryptic diversity and symbiont interactions in rock-posy lichens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leavitt, Steven D; Kraichak, Ekaphan; Vondrak, Jan; Nelsen, Matthew P; Sohrabi, Mohammad; Perez-Ortega, Sergio; St Clair, Larry L; Lumbsch, H Thorsten

    2016-06-01

    Identifying factors that influence species interactions is central to research in symbiotic systems. While lichens represent iconic models of symbiosis and play important roles in understanding the biology of symbiotic interactions, patterns of interactions in lichen symbionts and mechanisms governing these relationships are not well characterized. This is due, in part to the fact that current taxonomic approaches for recognizing diversity in lichen symbionts commonly fail to accurately reflect actual species diversity. In this study, we employed DNA-based approaches to circumscribed candidate species-level lineages in rock-posy lichen symbionts (mycobiont=Rhizoplaca s. lat. species; photobiont=Trebouxia species). Our results revealed a high degree of cryptic diversity in both the myco- and photobionts in these lichens. Using the candidate species circumscribed here, we investigated the specificity of the symbionts toward their partners and inferred the relative importance of various factors influencing symbiont interactions. Distinct mycobiont species complexes, ecozones, and biomes are significantly correlated with the occurrence of photobiont OTUs, indicating that complex interactions among mycobiont lineages, ecogeography, and microhabitat determine interactions between photobionts and their mycobionts in lichen symbiosis. One-to-one specificity between mycobiont and photobiont species was not found, with the exception of R. maheui that associated with a single Trebouxia OTU that was not found with other Rhizoplaca s. lat. species. We estimated the most recent common ancestor of the core Rhizoplaca group at c. 62.5Ma, similar in age to the diverse parmelioid core group in the well-studied family Parmeliaceae. However, in contrast to Parmeliaceae, species in Rhizoplaca were found to associate with a narrow range of photobionts. Our study provides important perspectives into species diversity and interactions in iconic lichen symbiotic systems and establishes a

  8. Ectomycorrhizal fungal communities coinvading with Pinaceae host plants in Argentina: Gringos bajo el bosque.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayward, Jeremy; Horton, Thomas R; Nuñez, Martin A

    2015-10-01

    Coinvasive ectomycorrhizal (ECM) fungi allow Pinaceae species to invade regions otherwise lacking compatible symbionts, but ECM fungal communities permitting Pinaceae invasions are poorly understood. In the context of Pinaceae invasions on Isla Victoria, Nahuel Huapi National Park, Argentina, we asked: what ECM fungi are coinvading with Pinaceae hosts on Isla Victoria; are some ECM fungal species or genera more prone to invade than others; and are all ECM fungal species that associate with Northern Hemisphere hosts also nonnative, or are some native fungi compatible with nonnative plants? We sampled ECMs from 226 Pinaceae host plant individuals, both planted individuals and recruits, growing inside and invading from plantations. We used molecular techniques to examine ECM fungal communities associating with these trees. A distinctive subset of the ECM fungal community predominated far from plantations, indicating differences between highly invasive and less invasive ECM fungi. Some fungal invaders reported here have been detected in other locations around the world, suggesting strong invasion potential. Fungi that were frequently detected far from plantations are often found in early-successional sites in the native range, while fungi identified as late-successional species in the native range are rarely found far from plantations, suggesting a means for predicting potential fungal coinvaders.

  9. Environmental symbiont acquisition may not be the solution to warming seas for reef-building corals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mary Alice Coffroth

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Coral reefs worldwide are in decline. Much of the mortality can be attributed to coral bleaching (loss of the coral's intracellular photosynthetic algal symbiont associated with global warming. How corals will respond to increasing oceanic temperatures has been an area of extensive study and debate. Recovery after a bleaching event is dependent on regaining symbionts, but the source of repopulating symbionts is poorly understood. Possibilities include recovery from the proliferation of endogenous symbionts or recovery by uptake of exogenous stress-tolerant symbionts. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: To test one of these possibilities, the ability of corals to acquire exogenous symbionts, bleached colonies of Porites divaricata were exposed to symbiont types not normally found within this coral and symbiont acquisition was monitored. After three weeks exposure to exogenous symbionts, these novel symbionts were detected in some of the recovering corals, providing the first experimental evidence that scleractinian corals are capable of temporarily acquiring symbionts from the water column after bleaching. However, the acquisition was transient, indicating that the new symbioses were unstable. Only those symbiont types present before bleaching were stable upon recovery, demonstrating that recovery was from the resident in situ symbiont populations. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: These findings suggest that some corals do not have the ability to adjust to climate warming by acquiring and maintaining exogenous, more stress-tolerant symbionts. This has serious ramifications for the success of coral reefs and surrounding ecosystems and suggests that unless actions are taken to reverse it, climate change will lead to decreases in biodiversity and a loss of coral reefs.

  10. Variable genetic architectures produce virtually identical molecules in bacterial symbionts of fungus-growing ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sit, Clarissa S; Ruzzini, Antonio C; Van Arnam, Ethan B; Ramadhar, Timothy R; Currie, Cameron R; Clardy, Jon

    2015-10-27

    Small molecules produced by Actinobacteria have played a prominent role in both drug discovery and organic chemistry. As part of a larger study of the actinobacterial symbionts of fungus-growing ants, we discovered a small family of three previously unreported piperazic acid-containing cyclic depsipeptides, gerumycins A-C. The gerumycins are slightly smaller versions of dentigerumycin, a cyclic depsipeptide that selectively inhibits a common fungal pathogen, Escovopsis. We had previously identified this molecule from a Pseudonocardia associated with Apterostigma dentigerum, and now we report the molecule from an associate of the more highly derived ant Trachymyrmex cornetzi. The three previously unidentified compounds, gerumycins A-C, have essentially identical structures and were produced by two different symbiotic Pseudonocardia spp. from ants in the genus Apterostigma found in both Panama and Costa Rica. To understand the similarities and differences in the biosynthetic pathways that produced these closely related molecules, the genomes of the three producing Pseudonocardia were sequenced and the biosynthetic gene clusters identified. This analysis revealed that dramatically different biosynthetic architectures, including genomic islands, a plasmid, and the use of spatially separated genetic loci, can lead to molecules with virtually identical core structures. A plausible evolutionary model that unifies these disparate architectures is presented.

  11. Fungal DNA barcoding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Jianping

    2016-11-01

    Fungi are ubiquitous in both natural and human-made environments. They play important roles in the health of plants, animals, and humans, and in broad ecosystem functions. Thus, having an efficient species-level identification system could significantly enhance our ability to treat fungal diseases and to monitor the spatial and temporal patterns of fungal distributions and migrations. DNA barcoding is a potent approach for rapid identification of fungal specimens, generating novel species hypothesis, and guiding biodiversity and ecological studies. In this mini-review, I briefly summarize (i) the history of DNA sequence-based fungal identification; (ii) the emergence of the ITS region as the consensus primary fungal barcode; (iii) the use of the ITS barcodes to address a variety of issues on fungal diversity from local to global scales, including generating a large number of species hypothesis; and (iv) the problems with the ITS barcode region and the approaches to overcome these problems. Similar to DNA barcoding research on plants and animals, significant progress has been achieved over the last few years in terms of both the questions being addressed and the foundations being laid for future research endeavors. However, significant challenges remain. I suggest three broad areas of research to enhance the usefulness of fungal DNA barcoding to meet the current and future challenges: (i) develop a common set of primers and technologies that allow the amplification and sequencing of all fungi at both the primary and secondary barcode loci; (ii) compile a centralized reference database that includes all recognized fungal species as well as species hypothesis, and allows regular updates from the research community; and (iii) establish a consensus set of new species recognition criteria based on barcode DNA sequences that can be applied across the fungal kingdom.

  12. Fungal arthritis and osteomyelitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohli, Rakhi; Hadley, Susan

    2005-12-01

    Fungal arthritis and osteomyelitis are uncommon diseases and generally present in an indolent fashion. The incidence of fungal bone and joint dis-ease is increasing with an increase in the prevalence of factors predisposing to invasive fungal disease, such as the use of central venous catheters, broad spectrum antibiotics, immunosuppression, and abdominal surgery. Definitive diagnosis relies on bone or synovial culture or biopsy. Successful management has traditionally consisted of amphotericin B in combination with surgical debridement. Given the rarity of this disease, treatment is not well defined, but reports of success with the use of azole antifungal agents, including itraconazole, fluconazole, voriconazole, and posaconazole, are promising.

  13. Differential temporal changes of primary and secondary bacterial symbionts and whitefly host fitness following antibiotic treatments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Chang-Rong; Shan, Hong-Wei; Xiao, Na; Zhang, Fan-Di; Wang, Xiao-Wei; Liu, Yin-Quan; Liu, Shu-Sheng

    2015-01-01

    Where multiple symbionts coexist in the same host, the selective elimination of a specific symbiont may enable the roles of a given symbiont to be investigated. We treated the Mediterranean species of the whitefly Bemisia tabaci complex by oral delivery of the antibiotic rifampicin, and then examined the temporal changes of its primary symbiont “Candidatus Portiera aleyrodidarum” and secondary symbiont “Ca. Hamiltonella defensa” as well as host fitness for three generations. In adults treated with rifampicin (F0), the secondary symbiont was rapidly reduced, approaching complete disappearance as adults aged. In contrast, the primary symbiont was little affected until later in the adult life. In the offspring of these adults (F1), both symbionts were significantly reduced and barely detectable when the hosts reached the adult stage. The F1 adults laid few eggs (F2), all of which failed to hatch. Mating experiments illustrated that the negative effects of rifampicin on host fitness were exerted via female hosts but not males. This study provides the first evidence of differential temporal reductions of primary and secondary symbionts in whiteflies following an antibiotic treatment. Studies that disrupt functions of bacterial symbionts must consider their temporal changes. PMID:26510682

  14. Inheritance patterns of secondary symbionts during sexual reproduction of pea aphid biotypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peccoud, Jean; Bonhomme, Joël; Mahéo, Frédérique; de la Huerta, Manon; Cosson, Olivier; Simon, Jean-Christophe

    2014-06-01

    Herbivorous insects frequently harbor bacterial symbionts that affect their ecology and evolution. Aphids host the obligatory endosymbiont Buchnera, which is required for reproduction, together with facultative symbionts whose frequencies vary across aphid populations. These maternally transmitted secondary symbionts have been particularly studied in the pea aphid, Acyrthosiphon pisum, which harbors at least 8 distinct bacterial species (not counting Buchnera) having environmentally dependent effects on host fitness. In particular, these symbiont species are associated with pea aphid populations feeding on specific plants. Although they are maternally inherited, these bacteria are occasionally transferred across insect lineages. One mechanism of such nonmaternal transfer is paternal transmission to the progeny during sexual reproduction. To date, transmission of secondary symbionts during sexual reproduction of aphids has been investigated in only a handful of aphid lineages and 3 symbiont species. To better characterize this process, we investigated inheritance patterns of 7 symbiont species during sexual reproduction of pea aphids through a crossing experiment involving 49 clones belonging to 9 host-specialized biotypes, and 117 crosses. Symbiont species in the progeny were detected with diagnostic qualitative PCR at the fundatrix stage hatching from eggs and in later parthenogenetic generations. We found no confirmed case of paternal transmission of symbionts to the progeny, and we observed that maternal transmission of a particular symbiont species (Serratia symbiotica) was quite inefficient. We discuss these observations in respect to the ecology of the pea aphid.

  15. Insect pathology and fungal entomopathogens

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fungi that occur inside asymptomatic plant tissues are known as fungal endophytes. Different genera of fungal entomopathogens have been reported as naturally occurring fungal endophytes, and it has been shown that it is possible to inoculate plants with fungal entomopathogens, making them endophytic...

  16. Symbiosis within Symbiosis: Evolving Nitrogen-Fixing Legume Symbionts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Remigi, Philippe; Zhu, Jun; Young, J Peter W; Masson-Boivin, Catherine

    2016-01-01

    Bacterial accessory genes are genomic symbionts with an evolutionary history and future that is different from that of their hosts. Packages of accessory genes move from strain to strain and confer important adaptations, such as interaction with eukaryotes. The ability to fix nitrogen with legumes is a remarkable example of a complex trait spread by horizontal transfer of a few key symbiotic genes, converting soil bacteria into legume symbionts. Rhizobia belong to hundreds of species restricted to a dozen genera of the Alphaproteobacteria and Betaproteobacteria, suggesting infrequent successful transfer between genera but frequent successful transfer within genera. Here we review the genetic and environmental conditions and selective forces that have shaped evolution of this complex symbiotic trait. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. A nuptially transmitted ichthyosporean symbiont of Tenebrio molitor (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lord, Jeffrey C; Hartzer, Kris L; Kambhampati, Srinivas

    2012-01-01

    The yellow mealworm, Tenebrio molitor, harbors a symbiont that has spores with a thick, laminated wall and infects the fat body and ventral nerve chord of adult and larval beetles. In adult males, there is heavy infection of the epithelial cells of the testes and between testes lobes with occasional penetration of the lobes. Spores are enveloped in the spermatophores when they are formed at the time of mating and transferred to the female's bursa copulatrix. Infection has not been found in the ovaries. The sequence of the nuclear small subunit rDNA indicates that the symbiont is a member of the Ichthyosporea, a class of protists near the animal-fungi divergence.

  18. Genomics of "Candidatus Synechococcus spongiarium", a Cyanobacterial Sponge Symbiont

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Slaby, Beate M. [Univ. of Wuerzburg (Germany); Copeland, Alex [Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Walnut Creek, CA (United States). Dept. of Energy Joint Genome Inst.; Woyke, Tanja [Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Walnut Creek, CA (United States). Dept. of Energy Joint Genome Inst.; Hentschel, Ute [Univ. of Wuerzburg (Germany)

    2014-03-21

    Marine sponges (Porifera): ancient metazoans of ecological importance, that produce bioactive secondary metabolites and interact with various microorganisms including cyanobacteria1: Marine Synechococcus spp.: cyanobacteria, important contributors to the global carbon cycle and major primary producers in the oceans2 Ca. S. spongiarum: an ecotype of this genus, widespread and abundant symbiont of various marine sponges around the world3, e.g. Aplysina aerophoba

  19. [Pathogenesis of invasive fungal infections].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Vidal, Carolina; Carratalà, Jordi

    2012-03-01

    Invasive fungal infections remain a life-threatening disease. The development of invasive fungal disease is dependent on multiple factors, such us colonization and efficient host immune response. We aimed to review the pathogenesis of invasive fungal infections, in particular, those caused by Candida and Aspergillus. For this we propose, to describe the fungal characteristics, to detail the host defence mechanisms against fungus and to analyse the host risk factors for invasive fungal infection.

  20. Unearthing carrion beetles' microbiome: characterization of bacterial and fungal hindgut communities across the Silphidae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaltenpoth, Martin; Steiger, Sandra

    2014-03-01

    Carrion beetles (Coleoptera, Silphidae) are well known for their behaviour of exploiting vertebrate carcasses for nutrition. While species in the subfamily Silphinae feed on large carcasses and on larvae of competing scavengers, the Nicrophorinae are unique in monopolizing, burying and defending small carrion, and providing extensive biparental care. As a first step towards investigating whether microbial symbionts may aid in carcass utilization or defence, we characterized the microbial hindgut communities of six Nicrophorinae (Nicrophorus spp.) and two Silphinae species (Oiceoptoma noveboracense and Necrophila americana) by deep ribosomal RNA amplicon sequencing. Across all species, bacteria in the family Xanthomonadaceae, related to Ignatzschineriao larvae, were consistently common, and several other taxa were present in lower abundance (Enterobacteriales, Burkholderiales, Bacilli, Clostridiales and Bacteroidales). Additionally, the Nicrophorinae showed high numbers of unusual Clostridiales, while the Silphinae were characterized by Flavobacteriales and Rhizobiales (Bartonella sp.). In addition to the complex community of bacterial symbionts, each species of carrion beetle harboured a diversity of ascomycetous yeasts closely related to Yarrowia lipolytica. Despite the high degree of consistency in microbial communities across the Silphidae--specifically within the Nicrophorinae--both the fungal symbiont phylogeny and distance-based bacterial community clustering showed higher congruence with sampling locality than host phylogeny. Thus, despite the possibility for vertical transmission via anal secretions, the distinct hindgut microbiota of the Silphidae appears to be shaped by frequent horizontal exchange or environmental uptake of symbionts. The microbial community profiles, together with information on host ecology and the metabolic potential of related microorganisms, allow us to propose hypotheses on putative roles of the symbionts in carcass degradation

  1. Studying the Complex Communities of Ants and Their Symbionts Using Ecological Network Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivens, Aniek B F; von Beeren, Christoph; Blüthgen, Nico; Kronauer, Daniel J C

    2016-01-01

    Ant colonies provide well-protected and resource-rich environments for a plethora of symbionts. Historically, most studies of ants and their symbionts have had a narrow taxonomic scope, often focusing on a single ant or symbiont species. Here we discuss the prospects of studying these assemblies in a community ecology context using the framework of ecological network analysis. We introduce three basic network metrics that we consider particularly relevant for improving our knowledge of ant-symbiont communities: interaction specificity, network modularity, and phylogenetic signal. We then discuss army ant symbionts as examples of large and primarily parasitic communities, and symbiotic sternorrhynchans as examples of generally smaller and primarily mutualistic communities in the context of these network analyses. We argue that this approach will provide new and complementary insights into the evolutionary and ecological dynamics between ants and their many associates, and will facilitate comparisons across different ant-symbiont assemblages as well as across different types of ecological networks.

  2. Phylogenetic analysis of symbionts in feather-feeding lice of the genus Columbicola: evidence for repeated symbiont replacements

    OpenAIRE

    Smith, Wendy A.; Oakeson, Kelly F.; Johnson, Kevin P.; Reed, David L.; Carter, Tamar; Smith, Kari L; Koga, Ryuichi; Fukatsu, Takema; Dale H Clayton; Dale, Colin

    2013-01-01

    Background Many groups of insects have obligate bacterial symbionts that are vertically transmitted. Such associations are typically characterized by the presence of a monophyletic group of bacteria living in a well-defined host clade. In addition the phylogeny of the symbiotic bacteria is typically congruent with that of the host, signifying co-speciation. Here we show that bacteria living in a single genus of feather lice, Columbicola (Insecta: Phthiraptera), present an exception to this ty...

  3. Antitumor polyketide biosynthesis by an uncultivated bacterial symbiont of the marine sponge Theonella swinhoei

    OpenAIRE

    Piel, Jörn; Hui, Dequan; Wen, Gaiping; Butzke, Daniel; Platzer, Matthias; Fusetani, Nobuhiro; Matsunaga, Shigeki

    2004-01-01

    Bacterial symbionts have long been suspected to be the true producers of many drug candidates isolated from marine invertebrates. Sponges, the most important marine source of biologically active natural products, have been frequently hypothesized to contain compounds of bacterial origin. This symbiont hypothesis, however, remained unproven because of a general inability to cultivate the suspected producers. However, we have recently identified an uncultured Pseudomonas sp. symbiont as the mos...

  4. Interaction between workers during a short time window is required for bacterial symbiont transmission in Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsh, Sarah E; Poulsen, Michael; Pinto-Tomás, Adrián; Currie, Cameron R

    2014-01-01

    Stable associations between partners over time are critical for the evolution of mutualism. Hosts employ a variety of mechanisms to maintain specificity with bacterial associates. Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants farm a fungal cultivar as their primary nutrient source. These ants also carry a Pseudonocardia Actinobacteria exosymbiont on their bodies that produces antifungal compounds that help inhibit specialized parasites of the ants' fungal garden. Major workers emerge from their pupal cases (eclose) symbiont-free, but exhibit visible Actinobacterial coverage within 14 days post-eclosion. Using subcolony experiments, we investigate exosymbiont transmission within Acromyrmex colonies. We found successful transmission to newly eclosed major workers fostered by major workers with visible Actinobacteria in all cases (100% acquiring, n = 19). In contrast, newly eclosed major workers reared without exosymbiont-carrying major workers did not acquire visible Actinobacteria (0% acquiring, n = 73). We further show that the majority of ants exposed to major workers with exosymbionts within 2 hours of eclosion acquired bacteria (60.7% acquiring, n = 28), while normal acquisition did not occur when exposure occurred later than 2 hours post-eclosion (0% acquiring, n = 18). Our findings show that transmission of exosymbionts to newly eclosed major workers occurs through interactions with exosymbiont-covered workers within a narrow time window after eclosion. This mode of transmission likely helps ensure the defensive function within colonies, as well as specificity and partner fidelity in the ant-bacterium association.

  5. Fungal endocarditis: current challenges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tattevin, Pierre; Revest, Matthieu; Lefort, Agnès; Michelet, Christian; Lortholary, Olivier

    2014-10-01

    Whilst it used to affect mostly intravenous drug users and patients who underwent valvular surgery with suboptimal infection control procedures, fungal endocarditis is now mostly observed in patients with severe immunodeficiency (onco-haematology), in association with chronic central venous access and broad-spectrum antibiotic use. The incidence of fungal endocarditis has probably decreased in most developed countries with access to harm-reduction policies (i.e. needle exchange programmes) and with improved infection control procedures during cardiac surgery. Use of specific blood culture bottles for diagnosis of fungal endocarditis has decreased due to optimisation of media and automated culture systems. Meanwhile, the advent of rapid techniques, including fungal antigen detection (galactomannan, mannan/anti-mannan antibodies and β-1,3-d-glucans) and PCR (e.g. universal fungal PCR targeting 18S rRNA genes), shall improve sensitivity and reduce diagnostics delays, although limited data are available on their use for the diagnosis of fungal endocarditis. New antifungal agents available since the early 2000s may represent dramatic improvement for fungal endocarditis: (i) a new class, the echinocandins, has the potential to improve the management of Candida endocarditis owing to its fungicidal effect on yeasts as well as tolerability of increased dosages; and (ii) improved survival in patients with invasive aspergillosis with voriconazole compared with amphotericin B, and this may apply to Aspergillus sp. endocarditis as well, although its prognosis remains dismal. These achievements may allow selected patients to be cured with prolonged medical treatment alone when surgery is considered too risky.

  6. Fungal specificity and selectivity for algae play a major role in determining lichen partnerships across diverse ecogeographic regions in the lichen-forming family Parmeliaceae (Ascomycota).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leavitt, Steven D; Kraichak, Ekaphan; Nelsen, Matthew P; Altermann, Susanne; Divakar, Pradeep K; Alors, David; Esslinger, Theodore L; Crespo, Ana; Lumbsch, Thorsten

    2015-07-01

    Microbial symbionts are instrumental to the ecological and long-term evolutionary success of their hosts, and the central role of symbiotic interactions is increasingly recognized across the vast majority of life. Lichens provide an iconic group for investigating patterns in species interactions; however, relationships among lichen symbionts are often masked by uncertain species boundaries or an inability to reliably identify symbionts. The species-rich lichen-forming fungal family Parmeliaceae provides a diverse group for assessing patterns of interactions of algal symbionts, and our study addresses patterns of lichen symbiont interactions at the largest geographic and taxonomic scales attempted to date. We analysed a total of 2356 algal internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region sequences collected from lichens representing ten mycobiont genera in Parmeliaceae, two genera in Lecanoraceae and 26 cultured Trebouxia strains. Algal ITS sequences were grouped into operational taxonomic units (OTUs); we attempted to validate the evolutionary independence of a subset of the inferred OTUs using chloroplast and mitochondrial loci. We explored the patterns of symbiont interactions in these lichens based on ecogeographic distributions and mycobiont taxonomy. We found high levels of undescribed diversity in Trebouxia, broad distributions across distinct ecoregions for many photobiont OTUs and varying levels of mycobiont selectivity and specificity towards the photobiont. Based on these results, we conclude that fungal specificity and selectivity for algal partners play a major role in determining lichen partnerships, potentially superseding ecology, at least at the ecogeographic scale investigated here. To facilitate effective communication and consistency across future studies, we propose a provisional naming system for Trebouxia photobionts and provide representative sequences for each OTU circumscribed in this study.

  7. Co-Speciation of Earthworms and their nephridial symbionts, Acidovorax Spp

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Marie Braad; Fritz, Michael; Holmstrup, Martin

    2006-01-01

    in Denmark and DNA was extracted from their nephridia. Earthworm phylogeny was resolved on the basis of mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) by direct PCR amplification and sequencing from the nephridial DNA extract. Symbiont 16S rRNA gene sequences were retrieved by cloning and sequencing...... the extracted DNA. The presence of the symbionts in the ampulla was verified by performing fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) on all worm species using an Acidovorax-specific probe. Earthworm and symbiont phylogeny was largely congruent, indicating that host and symbiont have indeed co-evolved since...

  8. Allergic Fungal Rhinosinusitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoyt, Alice E W; Borish, Larry; Gurrola, José; Payne, Spencer

    2016-01-01

    This article reviews the history of allergic fungal rhinosinusitis and the clinical, pathologic, and radiographic criteria necessary to establish its diagnosis and differentiate this disease from other types of chronic rhinosinusitis. Allergic fungal rhinosinusitis is a noninvasive fungal form of sinus inflammation characterized by an often times unilateral, expansile process in which the typical allergic "peanut-butter-like" mucin contributes to the formation of nasal polyps, hyposmia/anosmia, and structural changes of the face. IgE sensitization to fungi is a necessary, but not sufficient, pathophysiologic component of the disease process that is also defined by microscopic visualization of mucin-containing fungus and characteristic radiological imaging. This article expounds on these details and others including the key clinical and scientific distinctions of this diagnosis, the pathophysiologic mechanisms beyond IgE-mediated hypersensitivity that must be at play, and areas of current and future research.

  9. Identification of Paenibacillus as a Symbiont in Acanthamoeba.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maschio, Vinicius José; Corção, Gertrudes; Bücker, Francielle; Caumo, Karin; Rott, Marilise Brittes

    2015-09-01

    Amoebae of the genus Acanthamoeba occur worldwide and in addition to being pathogens, are important vehicles for microorganisms with clinical and environmental importance. This study aimed to evaluate the profiling of endosymbionts in 12 isolates of Acanthamoeba using V3 region of 16S rDNA denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and sequencing. The DGGE enabled us to characterize the endosymbionts diversity in isolates of Acanthamoeba, and to identify Paenibacillus sp., an emerging pathogen, as an amoebic endosymbiont. The results of this study demonstrated that Acanthamoeba is capable of transporting a large number of endosymbionts. This is the first study that reports, the presence of Paenibacillus sp. as amebic symbiont.

  10. Presumptive horizontal symbiont transmission in the fungus-growing termite Macrotermes natalensis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fine Licht, de H.H.; Boomsma, J.J.; Aanen, D.K.

    2006-01-01

    All colonies of the fungus-growing termite Macrotermes natalensis studied so far are associated with a single genetically variable lineage of Termitomyces symbionts. Such limited genetic variation of symbionts and the absence of sexual fruiting bodies (mushrooms) on M. natalensis mounds would be com

  11. A phase-variable surface layer from the gut symbiont bacteroides thetaiotaomicron

    OpenAIRE

    Fischbach, Michael; Taketani, M; Donia, MS; Jacobson, AN; Lambris, JD; Fischbach, MA

    2015-01-01

    © 2015 Taketani et al.The capsule from Bacteroides, a common gut symbiont, has long been a model system for studying the molecular mechanisms of host-symbiont interactions. The Bacteroides capsule is thought to consist of an array of phase-variable polysac

  12. Excess algal symbionts increase the susceptibility of reef corals to bleaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunning, Ross; Baker, Andrew C.

    2013-03-01

    Rising ocean temperatures associated with global climate change are causing mass coral bleaching and mortality worldwide. Understanding the genetic and environmental factors that mitigate coral bleaching susceptibility may aid local management efforts to help coral reefs survive climate change. Although bleaching susceptibility depends partly on the genetic identity of a coral's algal symbionts, the effect of symbiont density, and the factors controlling it, remain poorly understood. By applying a new metric of symbiont density to study the coral Pocillopora damicornis during seasonal warming and acute bleaching, we show that symbiont cell ratio density is a function of both symbiont type and environmental conditions, and that corals with high densities are more susceptible to bleaching. Higher vulnerability of corals with more symbionts establishes a quantitative mechanistic link between symbiont density and the molecular basis for coral bleaching, and indicates that high densities do not buffer corals from thermal stress, as has been previously suggested. These results indicate that environmental conditions that increase symbiont densities, such as nutrient pollution, will exacerbate climate-change-induced coral bleaching, providing a mechanistic explanation for why local management to reduce these stressors will help coral reefs survive future warming.

  13. Fungal Wound Infection

    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Podcasts

    2016-01-28

    Dr. David Tribble, acting director of the infectious disease clinical research program at Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, discusses fungal wound infections after combat trauma.  Created: 1/28/2016 by National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID).   Date Released: 1/28/2016.

  14. Fungal pathogens of Proteaceae

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Crous, P.W.; Summerell, B.A.; Swart, L.; Denman, S.; Taylor, J.E.; Bezuidenhout, C.M.; Palm, M.E.; Marincowitz, S.; Groenewald, J.Z.

    2011-01-01

    Species of Leucadendron, Leucospermum and Protea (Proteaceae) are in high demand for the international floriculture market due to their brightly coloured and textured flowers or bracts. Fungal pathogens, however, create a serious problem in cultivating flawless blooms. The aim of the present study

  15. Fungal pathogens of Proteaceae

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Crous, P.W.; Summerell, B.A.; Swart, L.; Denman, S.; Taylor, J.E.; Bezuidenhout, C.M.; Palm, M.E.; Marincowitz, S.; Groenewald, J.Z.

    2012-01-01

    Species of Leucadendron, Leucospermum and Protea (Proteaceae) are in high demand for the international floriculture market due to their brightly coloured and textured flowers or bracts. Fungal pathogens, however, create a serious problem in cultivating flawless blooms. The aim of the present study

  16. The bivalve Thyasira cf. gouldi hosts chemoautotrophic symbiont populations with strain level diversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bonita McCuaig

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Invertebrates from various marine habitats form nutritional symbioses with chemosynthetic bacteria. In chemosynthetic symbioses, both the mode of symbiont transmission and the site of bacterial housing can affect the composition of the symbiont population. Vertically transmitted symbionts, as well as those hosted intracellularly, are more likely to form clonal populations within their host. Conversely, symbiont populations that are environmentally acquired and extracellular may be more likely to be heterogeneous/mixed within host individuals, as observed in some mytilid bivalves. The symbionts of thyasirid bivalves are also extracellular, but limited 16S rRNA sequencing data suggest that thyasirid individuals contain uniform symbiont populations. In a recent study, Thyasira cf. gouldi individuals from Bonne Bay, Newfoundland, Canada were found to host one of three 16S rRNA phylotypes of sulfur-oxidizing gammaproteobacteria, suggesting environmental acquisition of symbionts and some degree of site-specificity. Here, we use Sanger sequencing of both 16S RNA and the more variable ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase (RuBisCO PCR products to further examine Thyasira cf. gouldi symbiont diversity at the scale of host individuals, as well as to elucidate any temporal or spatial patterns in symbiont diversity within Bonne Bay, and relationships with host OTU or size. We obtained symbiont 16S rRNA and RuBisCO Form II sequences from 54 and 50 host individuals, respectively, during nine sampling trips to three locations over four years. Analyses uncovered the same three closely related 16S rRNA phylotypes obtained previously, as well as three divergent RuBisCO phylotypes; these were found in various pair combinations within host individuals, suggesting incidents of horizontal gene transfer during symbiont evolution. While we found no temporal patterns in phylotype distribution or relationships with host OTU or size, some spatial effects were noted, with

  17. Fungus symbionts colonizing the galleries of the ambrosia beetle Platypus quercivorus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Endoh, Rikiya; Suzuki, Motofumi; Okada, Gen; Takeuchi, Yuko; Futai, Kazuyoshi

    2011-07-01

    Isolations were made to determine the fungal symbionts colonizing Platypus quercivorus beetle galleries of dead or dying Quercus laurifolia, Castanopsis cuspidata, Quercus serrata, Quercus crispula, and Quercus robur. For these studies, logs from oak wilt-killed trees were collected from Kyoto Prefecture, Japan. Fungi were isolated from the: (1) entrances of beetle galleries, (2) vertical galleries, (3) lateral galleries, and (4) the larval cradle of P. quercivorus in each host tree. Among the fungus colonies which appeared on YM agar plates, 1,219 were isolated as the representative isolates for fungus species inhabiting in the galleries based on their cultural characteristics. The validity of the visual classification of the fungus colonies was checked and if necessary properly corrected using microsatellite-primed PCR fingerprints. The nucleotide sequence of the D1/D2 region of the large subunit nuclear rRNA gene detected 38 fungus species (104 strains) of which three species, i.e., Candida sp. 3, Candida kashinagacola (both yeasts), and the filamentous fungus Raffaelea quercivora were isolated from all the tree species. The two yeasts were most prevalent in the interior of galleries, regardless of host tree species, suggesting their close association with the beetle. A culture-independent method, terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP) analysis was also used to characterize the fungus flora of beetle galleries. T-RFLP patterns showed that yeast species belonging to the genus Ambrosiozyma frequently occurred on the gallery walls along with the two Candida species. Ours is the first report showing the specific fungi inhabiting the galleries of a platypodid ambrosia beetle.

  18. Coral ontogeny affects early symbiont acquisition in laboratory-reared recruits

    Science.gov (United States)

    McIlroy, Shelby E.; Coffroth, Mary Alice

    2017-09-01

    In most coral species, the critical association with a subset of genetically diverse algal endosymbionts, Symbiodinium, is re-established anew each generation in early coral ontogeny. Yet little is known about the window during which these associations are established or the potential for altering symbiont associations through early exposure to non-native, and/or ecologically beneficial (e.g., stress tolerant), symbiont strains. This study examined the ontogenetic window of symbiont uptake in a restoration target species. Orbicella faveolata recruits, maintained aposymbiotic in laboratory tanks for 4 months, showed a significant decrease in symbiont acquisition upon exposure to natural seawater. Recruits initially inoculated with cultured Symbiodinium readily acquired additional strains from environmental symbiont populations upon exposure, but exogenous uptake also decreased in frequency after 4 months of laboratory rearing. Early exposure to Symbiodinium may benefit laboratory-reared recruits (e.g., enhance growth), but the potential for establishing long-term novel symbiotic associations may be limited.

  19. Direct evidence for maternal inheritance of bacterial symbionts in small deep-sea clams (Bivalvia: Vesicomyidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szafranski, Kamil M.; Gaudron, Sylvie M.; Duperron, Sébastien

    2014-05-01

    Bacterial symbiont transmission is a key step in the renewal of the symbiotic interaction at each host generation, and different modes of transmission can be distinguished. Vesicomyidae are chemosynthetic bivalves from reducing habitats that rely on symbiosis with sulfur-oxidizing bacteria, in which two studies suggesting vertical transmission of symbionts have been published, both limited by the imaging techniques used. Using fluorescence in situ hybridization and transmission electron microscopy, we demonstrate that bacterial symbionts of Isorropodon bigoti, a gonochoristic Vesicomyidae from the Guiness cold seep site, occur intracellularly within female gametes at all stages of gametogenesis from germ cells to mature oocytes and in early postlarval stage. Symbionts are completely absent from the male gonad and gametes. This study confirms the transovarial transmission of symbionts in Vesicomyidae and extends it to the smaller species for which no data were previously available.

  20. Host associations and beta diversity of fungal endophyte communities in New Guinea rainforest trees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vincent, J B; Weiblen, G D; May, G

    2016-02-01

    Processes shaping the distribution of foliar fungal endophyte species remain poorly understood. Despite increasing evidence that these cryptic fungal symbionts of plants mediate interactions with pathogens and herbivores, there remain basic questions regarding the extent to which dispersal limitation and host specificity might shape fungal endophyte community composition in rainforests. To assess the relative importance of spatial pattern and host specificity, we isolated fungi from a sample of mapped trees in lowland Papua New Guinea. Sequences of the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region were obtained for 2079 fungal endophytes from three sites and clustered into molecular operational taxonomic units (MOTUs) at 95% similarity. Multivariate analyses suggest that host affinity plays a significant role in structuring endophyte community composition whereas there was no evidence of endophyte spatial pattern at the scale of tens to hundreds of metres. Differences in endophyte communities between sampled trees were weakly correlated with variation in foliar traits but not with tree species relatedness. The dominance of relatively few generalist endophytes and the presence of a large number of rare MOTUs was a consistent observation at three sites separated by hundreds of kilometres and regional turnover was low. Host specificity appears to play a relatively weak but more important role than dispersal limitation in shaping the distribution of fungal endophyte communities in New Guinea forests. Our results suggest that in the absence of strong ecological gradients and host turnover, beta diversity of endophyte communities could be low in large areas of contiguous forest.

  1. The endosymbiont Arsenophonus is widespread in soybean aphid, Aphis glycines, but does not provide protection from parasitoids or a fungal pathogen.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason A Wulff

    Full Text Available Aphids commonly harbor bacterial facultative symbionts that have a variety of effects upon their aphid hosts, including defense against hymenopteran parasitoids and fungal pathogens. The soybean aphid, Aphis glycines Matsumura (Hemiptera: Aphididae, is infected with the symbiont Arsenophonus sp., which has an unknown role in its aphid host. Our research goals were to document the infection frequency and diversity of the symbiont in field-collected soybean aphids, and to determine whether Arsenophonus is defending soybean aphid against natural enemies. We performed diagnostic PCR and sequenced four Arsenophonus genes in soybean aphids from their native and introduced range to estimate infection frequency and genetic diversity, and found that Arsenophonus infection is highly prevalent and genetically uniform. To evaluate the defensive role of Arsenophonus, we cured two aphid genotypes of their natural Arsenophonus infection through ampicillin microinjection, resulting in infected and uninfected isolines within the same genetic background. These isolines were subjected to parasitoid assays using a recently introduced biological control agent, Binodoxys communis [Braconidae], a naturally recruited parasitoid, Aphelinus certus [Aphelinidae], and a commercially available biological control agent, Aphidius colemani [Braconidae]. We also assayed the effect of the common aphid fungal pathogen, Pandora neoaphidis (Remaudiere & Hennebert Humber (Entomophthorales: Entomophthoraceae, on the same aphid isolines. We did not find differences in successful parasitism for any of the parasitoid species, nor did we find differences in P. neoaphidis infection between our treatments. Our conclusion is that Arsenophonus does not defend its soybean aphid host against these major parasitoid and fungal natural enemies.

  2. An Entomopathogenic Nematode Extends Its Niche by Associating with Different Symbionts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maher, Abigail M D; Asaiyah, Mohamed A M; Brophy, Caroline; Griffin, Christine T

    2017-01-01

    Bacterial symbionts are increasingly recognised as mediators of ecologically important traits of their animal hosts, with acquisition of new traits possible by uptake of novel symbionts. The entomopathogenic nematode Heterorhabditis downesi associates with two bacterial symbionts, Photorhabdus temperata subsp. temperata and P. temperata subsp. cinerea. At one intensively studied coastal dune site, P. temperata subsp. cinerea is consistently more frequently isolated than P. temperata subsp. temperata in H. downesi recovered from under the bare sand/Ammophila arrenaria of the front dunes (where harsh conditions, including drought, prevail). This is not the case in the more permissive closed dune grassland further from the sea. No differences were detected in ITS1 (internal transcribed spacer) sequence between nematode lines carrying either of the two symbiont subspecies, nor did they differ in their ability to utilise insects from three orders. The two symbionts could be readily swapped between lines, and both were carried in equal numbers within infective juveniles. In laboratory experiments, we tested whether the symbionts differentially affected nematode survival in insect cadavers that were allowed to dry. We assessed numbers of nematode infective juveniles emerging from insects that had been infected with H. downesi carrying either symbiont subspecies and then allowed to desiccate for up to 62 days. In moist conditions, cadavers produced similar numbers of nematodes, irrespective of the symbiont subspecies present, while under desiccating conditions, P. temperata subsp. cinerea cadavers yielded more nematode progeny than P. temperata subsp. temperata cadavers. Desiccating cadavers with the same nematode isolates, carrying either one or the other symbiont subspecies, confirmed that the symbiont was responsible for differences in nematode survival. Moreover, cadavers harbouring P. temperata subsp. cinerea had a reduced rate of drying relative to cadavers

  3. Genetic transformation and phylogeny of bacterial symbionts from tsetse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beard, C B; O'Neill, S L; Mason, P; Mandelco, L; Woese, C R; Tesh, R B; Richards, F F; Aksoy, S

    1993-01-01

    Two isolates of bacterial endosymbionts, GP01 and GM02, were established in cell free medium from haemolymph of the tsetse, Glossina pallidipes and G. morsitans. These microorganisms appear similar to rickettsia-like organisms reported previously from various tsetse species. The 16S rRNA sequence analysis, however, placed them within the gamma subdivision of the Proteobacteria, phylogenetically distinct from most members of the Rickettsiaceae which align with the alpha subdivision. Distinct multiple endogenous plasmids are harboured by GP01 and GM02, suggesting that the two isolates are different. Restriction mapping analysis showed that one of the conserved plasmids is present in high copy number and is at least 80 kb in size. A heterologous plasmid pSUP204, which contains the broad host range oriV replication origin, was used to transfect bacterial cultures. The symbiont GM02 was transformed, and it expressed plasmid encoded resistance to the antibiotics ampicillin, tetracycline and chloramphenicol. Transformation of these symbionts may provide a novel means for expressing anti-parasitic genes within tsetse populations.

  4. The interactions between plant life form and fungal traits of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi determine the symbiotic community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    López-García, Álvaro; Azcón-Aguilar, Concepción; Barea, José M

    2014-12-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi have traditionally been considered generalist symbionts. However, an increasing number of studies are pointing out the selectivity potential of plant hosts. Plant life form, determined by plant life history traits, seems to drive the AM fungal community composition. The AM fungi also exhibit a wide diversity of functional traits known to be responsible for their distribution in natural ecosystems. However, little is known about the role of plant and fungal traits driving the resultant symbiotic assemblages. With the aim of testing the feedback relationship between plant and fungal traits on the resulting AM fungal community, we inoculated three different plant life forms, i.e. annual herbs, perennial herbs and perennial semi-woody plants, with AM fungal communities sampled in different seasons. We hypothesized that the annual climate variation will induce changes in the mean traits of the AM fungal communities present in the soil throughout the year. Furthermore, the association of plants with different life forms with AM fungi with contrasting life history traits will show certain preferences according to reciprocal traits of the plants and fungi. We found changes in the AM fungal community throughout the year, which were differentially disrupted by disturbance and altered by plant growth form and plant biomass. Both plant and fungal traits clearly contributed to the resultant AM fungal communities. The revealed process can have implications for the functioning of ecosystems since changes in dominant plant life forms or climatic variables could influence the traits of AM fungal communities in soil and hence ecosystem processes.

  5. Using molecular biology to study mycorrhizal fungal community ecology: Limits and perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chagnon, Pierre-Luc; Bainard, Luke D

    2015-01-01

    Molecular tools have progressively replaced morphological approaches to characterize microbial communities in nature. Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi are no exception to this rule. Yet, one challenge posed by these symbionts is that they colonize simultaneously both plant roots and soil, which complicates their detection and quantification. In most studies conducted to date, AM fungal communities have been characterized from roots only, soil only or spores only. Here, we discuss the pitfalls associated to drawing ecological inferences using such datasets. We also conclude by arguing that molecular biology will contribute most to advance knowledge in AM fungal ecology if it is integrated into broader perspectives taking into account the natural history of these organisms. This calls for a better merging of molecular and morphological approaches, and the establishment of intensive, long-term research programs.

  6. Mating type gene homologues and putative sex pheromone-sensing pathway in arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, a presumably asexual plant root symbiont.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halary, Sébastien; Daubois, Laurence; Terrat, Yves; Ellenberger, Sabrina; Wöstemeyer, Johannes; Hijri, Mohamed

    2013-01-01

    The fungal kingdom displays a fascinating diversity of sex-determination systems. Recent advances in genomics provide insights into the molecular mechanisms of sex, mating type determination, and evolution of sexual reproduction in many fungal species in both ancient and modern phylogenetic lineages. All major fungal groups have evolved sexual differentiation and recombination pathways. However, sexuality is unknown in arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) of the phylum Glomeromycota, an ecologically vital group of obligate plant root symbionts. AMF are commonly considered an ancient asexual lineage dating back to the Ordovician, approximately 460 M years ago. In this study, we used genomic and transcriptomic surveys of several AMF species to demonstrate the presence of conserved putative sex pheromone-sensing mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinases, comparable to those described in Ascomycota and Basidiomycota. We also find genes for high mobility group (HMG) transcription factors, homologous to SexM and SexP genes in the Mucorales. The SexM genes show a remarkable sequence diversity among multiple copies in the genome, while only a single SexP sequence was detected in some isolates of Rhizophagus irregularis. In the Mucorales and Microsporidia, the sexM gene is flanked by genes for a triosephosphate transporter (TPT) and a RNA helicase, but we find no evidence for synteny in the vicinity of the Sex locus in AMF. Nonetheless, our results, together with previous observations on meiotic machinery, suggest that AMF could undergo a complete sexual reproduction cycle.

  7. Mating type gene homologues and putative sex pheromone-sensing pathway in arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, a presumably asexual plant root symbiont.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sébastien Halary

    Full Text Available The fungal kingdom displays a fascinating diversity of sex-determination systems. Recent advances in genomics provide insights into the molecular mechanisms of sex, mating type determination, and evolution of sexual reproduction in many fungal species in both ancient and modern phylogenetic lineages. All major fungal groups have evolved sexual differentiation and recombination pathways. However, sexuality is unknown in arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF of the phylum Glomeromycota, an ecologically vital group of obligate plant root symbionts. AMF are commonly considered an ancient asexual lineage dating back to the Ordovician, approximately 460 M years ago. In this study, we used genomic and transcriptomic surveys of several AMF species to demonstrate the presence of conserved putative sex pheromone-sensing mitogen-activated protein (MAP kinases, comparable to those described in Ascomycota and Basidiomycota. We also find genes for high mobility group (HMG transcription factors, homologous to SexM and SexP genes in the Mucorales. The SexM genes show a remarkable sequence diversity among multiple copies in the genome, while only a single SexP sequence was detected in some isolates of Rhizophagus irregularis. In the Mucorales and Microsporidia, the sexM gene is flanked by genes for a triosephosphate transporter (TPT and a RNA helicase, but we find no evidence for synteny in the vicinity of the Sex locus in AMF. Nonetheless, our results, together with previous observations on meiotic machinery, suggest that AMF could undergo a complete sexual reproduction cycle.

  8. [Clinically documented fungal infections].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kakeya, Hiroshi; Kohno, Shigeru

    2008-12-01

    Proven fungal infections are diagnosed by histological/microbiological evidence of fungi at the site of infection and positive blood culture (fungemia). However, invasive diagnosing examinations are not always applied for all of immunocompromised patients. Clinically documented invasive fungal infections are diagnosed by typical radiological findings such as halo sign on chest CT plus positive serological/molecular evidence of fungi. Serological tests of Aspergillus galactomannan antigen and beta-glucan for aspergillosis and cryptococcal glucuronoxylomannan antigen for cryptococcosis are useful. Hence, none of reliable serological tests for zygomycosis are available so far. In this article, risk factors, sign and symptoms, and diagnostic methods for clinically documented cases of invasive aspergillosis, pulmonary cryptococcosis, and zygomycosis with diabates, are reviewed.

  9. Host-symbiont co-speciation and reductive genome evolution in gut symbiotic bacteria of acanthosomatid stinkbugs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kamagata Yoichi

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Host-symbiont co-speciation and reductive genome evolution have been commonly observed among obligate endocellular insect symbionts, while such examples have rarely been identified among extracellular ones, the only case reported being from gut symbiotic bacteria of stinkbugs of the family Plataspidae. Considering that gut symbiotic communities are vulnerable to invasion of foreign microbes, gut symbiotic associations have been thought to be evolutionarily not stable. Stinkbugs of the family Acanthosomatidae harbor a bacterial symbiont in the midgut crypts, the lumen of which is completely sealed off from the midgut main tract, thereby retaining the symbiont in the isolated cryptic cavities. We investigated histological, ecological, phylogenetic, and genomic aspects of the unique gut symbiosis of the acanthosomatid stinkbugs. Results Phylogenetic analyses showed that the acanthosomatid symbionts constitute a distinct clade in the γ-Proteobacteria, whose sister groups are the obligate endocellular symbionts of aphids Buchnera and the obligate gut symbionts of plataspid stinkbugs Ishikawaella. In addition to the midgut crypts, the symbionts were located in a pair of peculiar lubricating organs associated with the female ovipositor, by which the symbionts are vertically transmitted via egg surface contamination. The symbionts were detected not from ovaries but from deposited eggs, and surface sterilization of eggs resulted in symbiont-free hatchlings. The symbiont-free insects suffered retarded growth, high mortality, and abnormal morphology, suggesting important biological roles of the symbiont for the host insects. The symbiont phylogeny was generally concordant with the host phylogeny, indicating host-symbiont co-speciation over evolutionary time despite the extracellular association. Meanwhile, some local host-symbiont phylogenetic discrepancies were found, suggesting occasional horizontal symbiont transfers across the host

  10. Host-symbiont co-speciation and reductive genome evolution in gut symbiotic bacteria of acanthosomatid stinkbugs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kikuchi, Yoshitomo; Hosokawa, Takahiro; Nikoh, Naruo; Meng, Xian-Ying; Kamagata, Yoichi; Fukatsu, Takema

    2009-01-15

    Host-symbiont co-speciation and reductive genome evolution have been commonly observed among obligate endocellular insect symbionts, while such examples have rarely been identified among extracellular ones, the only case reported being from gut symbiotic bacteria of stinkbugs of the family Plataspidae. Considering that gut symbiotic communities are vulnerable to invasion of foreign microbes, gut symbiotic associations have been thought to be evolutionarily not stable. Stinkbugs of the family Acanthosomatidae harbor a bacterial symbiont in the midgut crypts, the lumen of which is completely sealed off from the midgut main tract, thereby retaining the symbiont in the isolated cryptic cavities. We investigated histological, ecological, phylogenetic, and genomic aspects of the unique gut symbiosis of the acanthosomatid stinkbugs. Phylogenetic analyses showed that the acanthosomatid symbionts constitute a distinct clade in the gamma-Proteobacteria, whose sister groups are the obligate endocellular symbionts of aphids Buchnera and the obligate gut symbionts of plataspid stinkbugs Ishikawaella. In addition to the midgut crypts, the symbionts were located in a pair of peculiar lubricating organs associated with the female ovipositor, by which the symbionts are vertically transmitted via egg surface contamination. The symbionts were detected not from ovaries but from deposited eggs, and surface sterilization of eggs resulted in symbiont-free hatchlings. The symbiont-free insects suffered retarded growth, high mortality, and abnormal morphology, suggesting important biological roles of the symbiont for the host insects. The symbiont phylogeny was generally concordant with the host phylogeny, indicating host-symbiont co-speciation over evolutionary time despite the extracellular association. Meanwhile, some local host-symbiont phylogenetic discrepancies were found, suggesting occasional horizontal symbiont transfers across the host lineages. The symbionts exhibited AT

  11. Dynamic Acquisition and Loss of Dual-Obligate Symbionts in the Plant-Sap-Feeding Adelgidae (Hemiptera: Sternorrhyncha: Aphidoidea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carol D. von Dohlen

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Sap-sucking insects typically engage in obligate relationships with symbiotic bacteria that play nutritional roles in synthesizing nutrients unavailable or in scarce supply from the plant-sap diets of their hosts. Adelgids are sap-sucking insects with complex life cycles that involve alternation between conifer tree species. While all adelgid species feed on spruce during the sexual phase of their life cycle, each adelgid species belongs to a major lineage that feeds on a distinct genus of conifers as their alternate host. Previous work on adelgid symbionts had discovered pairs of symbionts within each host species, and unusual diversity across the insect family, but left several open questions regarding the status of bacterial associates. Here, we explored the consistency of symbionts within and across adelgid lineages, and sought evidence for facultative vs. obligate symbiont status. Representative species were surveyed for symbionts using 16S ribosomal DNA gene sequencing, confirming that different symbiont pairs were consistently present within each major adelgid lineage. Several approaches were used to establish whether symbionts exhibited characteristics of long-term, obligate mutualists. Patterns of symbiont presence across adelgid species and diversification with host insects suggested obligate relationships. Fluorescent in situ hybridization and electron microscopy localized symbionts to bacteriocyte cells within the bacteriome of each species (with one previously known exception, and detection of symbionts in eggs indicated their vertical transmission. Common characteristics of long-term obligate symbionts, such as nucleotide compositional bias and pleomorphic symbiont cell shape were also observed. Superimposing microbial symbionts on the adelgid phylogeny revealed a dynamic pattern of symbiont gains and losses over a relatively short period of time compared to other symbionts associated with sap-sucking insects, with each adelgid

  12. Vertical transmission of chemoautotrophic symbionts in the bivalve Solemya velum (Bivalvia: Protobranchia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krueger, D M; Gustafson, R G; Cavanaugh, C M

    1996-04-01

    Adults of the bivalve species Solemya velum live in symbiosis with chemoautotrophic bacteria in specialized gill bacteriocytes. The bacteria play an essential nutritional role in the mature association, fixing CO2 via the Calvin cycle with energy obtained through the oxidation of reduced sulfur compounds. To understand how the continuity of this partnership is maintained between host generations, we investigated the mode of symbiont transfer in S. velum. A diagnostic assay using the polymerase chain reaction and primers specific for the S. velum symbiont ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase (RubisCO) gene consistently detected bacterial sequence in female gonad tissue, suggesting the presence of symbiont cells in host ovaries and a vertical mode of symbiont transmission from mother to offspring. Furthermore, intracellular bacteria were present in the developing gills of juveniles that had not yet hatched from the gelatinous capsule in which larval development occurs (11 days after fertilization). By 64 days postfertilization, the typical adult gill ultrastructure of alternating bacteriocytes and symbiont-free-intercalary cells was apparent. Knowledge about the mode of symbiont transfer in S. velum allows further study into the dynamics of host-symbiont interactions in chemoautotrophic associations.

  13. Gammaproteobacteria as essential primary symbionts in the striped shield bug, Graphosoma Lineatum (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karamipour, Naeime; Mehrabadi, Mohammad; Fathipour, Yaghoub

    2016-01-01

    Many members of suborder Heteroptra harbor heritable symbiotic bacteria. Here we characterize the gut symbiotic bacterium in Graphosoma lineatum (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) by using molecular phylogeny, real-time PCR analysis as well as light and electron microscopy observations. The microscopy observations revealed the presence of a large number of rod-shaped bacterial cells in the crypts. A very high prevalence (98 to 100%) of the symbiont infection was found in the insect populations that strongly supports an intimate association between these two organisms. Real-time PCR analysis also showed that the Gammaproteobacteria dominated the crypts. The sequences of 16sr RNA and groEL genes of symbiont showed high levels of similarity (93 to 95%) to Pantoea agglomeranse and Erwinia herbicola Gammaproteobacteria. Phylogenetic analyses placed G. lineatum symbiont in a well-defined branch, divergent from other stink bug bacterial symbionts. Co-evolutionary analysis showed lack of host-symbiont phylogenetic congruence. Surface sterilization of eggs resulted in increased pre-adult stage in the offspring (aposymbionts) in comparison to the normal. Also, fecundity, longevity, and adult stage were significantly decreased in the aposymbionts. Therefore, it seems that the symbiont might play a vital function in the host biology, in which host optimal development depends on the symbiont. PMID:27609055

  14. Loss of functional diversity and network modularity in introduced plant-fungal symbioses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dickie, Ian A; Cooper, Jerry A; Bufford, Jennifer L; Hulme, Philip E; Bates, Scott T

    2016-12-30

    The introduction of alien plants into a new range can result in the loss of co-evolved symbiotic organisms, such as mycorrhizal fungi, that are essential for normal plant physiological functions. Prior studies of mycorrhizal associations in alien plants have tended to focus on individual plant species on a case-by-case basis. This approach limits broad scale understanding of functional shifts and changes in interaction network structure that may occur following introduction. Here we use two extensive datasets of plant-fungal interactions derived from fungal sporocarp observations and recorded plant hosts in two island archipelago nations: New Zealand (NZ) and the United Kingdom (UK). We found that the NZ dataset shows a lower functional diversity of fungal hyphal foraging strategies in mycorrhiza of alien as compared with native trees. Across species this resulted in fungal foraging strategies associated with alien trees being much more variable in functional composition compared with native trees, which had a strikingly similar functional composition. The UK data showed no functional difference in fungal associates of alien and native plant genera. Notwithstanding this, both the NZ and UK data showed a substantial difference in interaction network structure of alien trees compared with native trees. In both cases, fungal associates of native trees showed strong modularity, while fungal associates of alien trees generally integrated into a single large module. The results suggest a lower functional diversity (in one dataset) and a simplification of network structure (in both) as a result of introduction, potentially driven by either limited symbiont co-introductions or disruption of habitat as a driver of specificity due to nursery conditions, planting, or plant edaphic-niche expansion. Recognizing these shifts in function and network structure has important implications for plant invasions and facilitation of secondary invasions via shared mutualist populations.

  15. Spectral Reflectance of Palauan Reef-Building Coral with Different Symbionts in Response to Elevated Temperature

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brandon J. Russell

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Spectral reflectance patterns of corals are driven largely by the pigments of photosynthetic symbionts within the host cnidarian. The warm inshore bays and cooler offshore reefs of Palau share a variety of coral species with differing endosymbiotic dinoflagellates (genus: Symbiodinium, with the thermally tolerant Symbiodinium trenchii (S. trenchii (= type D1a or D1-4 predominating under the elevated temperature regimes inshore, and primarily Clade C types in the cooler reefs offshore. Spectral reflectance of two species of stony coral, Cyphastrea serailia (C. serailia and Pachyseris rugosa (P. rugosa, from both inshore and offshore locations shared multiple features both between sites and to similar global data from other studies. No clear reflectance features were evident which might serve as markers of thermally tolerant S. trenchii symbionts compared to the same species of coral with different symbionts. Reflectance from C. serailia colonies from inshore had a fluorescence peak at approximately 500 nm which was absent from offshore animals. Integrated reflectance across visible wavelengths had an inverse correlation to symbiont cell density and could be used as a relative indicator of the symbiont abundance for each type of coral. As hypothesized, coral colonies from offshore with Clade C symbionts showed a greater response to experimental heating, manifested as decreased symbiont density and increased reflectance or “bleaching” than their inshore counterparts with S. trenchii. Although no unique spectral features were found to distinguish species of symbiont, spectral differences related to the abundance of symbionts could prove useful in field and remote sensing studies.

  16. Superparasitism Drives Heritable Symbiont Epidemiology and Host Sex Ratio in a Wasp.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven R Parratt

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Heritable microbial symbionts have profound impacts upon the biology of their arthropod hosts. Whilst our current understanding of the dynamics of these symbionts is typically cast within a framework of vertical transmission only, horizontal transmission has been observed in a number of cases. For instance, several symbionts can transmit horizontally when their parasitoid hosts share oviposition patches with uninfected conspecifics, a phenomenon called superparasitism. Despite this, horizontal transmission, and the host contact structures that facilitates it, have not been considered in heritable symbiont epidemiology. Here, we tested for the importance of host contact, and resulting horizontal transmission, for the epidemiology of a male-killing heritable symbiont (Arsenophonus nasoniae in parasitoid wasp hosts. We observed that host contact through superparasitism is necessary for this symbiont's spread in populations of its primary host Nasonia vitripennis, such that when superparasitism rates are high, A. nasoniae almost reaches fixation, causes highly female biased population sex ratios and consequently causes local host extinction. We further tested if natural interspecific variation in superparasitism behaviours predicted symbiont dynamics among parasitoid species. We found that A. nasoniae was maintained in laboratory populations of a closely related set of Nasonia species, but declined in other, more distantly related pteromalid hosts. The natural proclivity of a species to superparasitise was the primary factor determining symbiont persistence. Our results thus indicate that host contact behaviour is a key factor for heritable microbe dynamics when horizontal transmission is possible, and that 'reproductive parasite' phenotypes, such as male-killing, may be of secondary importance in the dynamics of such symbiont infections.

  17. Superparasitism Drives Heritable Symbiont Epidemiology and Host Sex Ratio in a Wasp.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven R Parratt

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Heritable microbial symbionts have profound impacts upon the biology of their arthropod hosts. Whilst our current understanding of the dynamics of these symbionts is typically cast within a framework of vertical transmission only, horizontal transmission has been observed in a number of cases. For instance, several symbionts can transmit horizontally when their parasitoid hosts share oviposition patches with uninfected conspecifics, a phenomenon called superparasitism. Despite this, horizontal transmission, and the host contact structures that facilitates it, have not been considered in heritable symbiont epidemiology. Here, we tested for the importance of host contact, and resulting horizontal transmission, for the epidemiology of a male-killing heritable symbiont (Arsenophonus nasoniae in parasitoid wasp hosts. We observed that host contact through superparasitism is necessary for this symbiont's spread in populations of its primary host Nasonia vitripennis, such that when superparasitism rates are high, A. nasoniae almost reaches fixation, causes highly female biased population sex ratios and consequently causes local host extinction. We further tested if natural interspecific variation in superparasitism behaviours predicted symbiont dynamics among parasitoid species. We found that A. nasoniae was maintained in laboratory populations of a closely related set of Nasonia species, but declined in other, more distantly related pteromalid hosts. The natural proclivity of a species to superparasitise was the primary factor determining symbiont persistence. Our results thus indicate that host contact behaviour is a key factor for heritable microbe dynamics when horizontal transmission is possible, and that 'reproductive parasite' phenotypes, such as male-killing, may be of secondary importance in the dynamics of such symbiont infections.

  18. Biomineralization of magnet nanoparticles with bacterial symbionts of man

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Horobets S.V.

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Bioinformational analysis of human’s bacterial symbionts (BS to study the process of biomineralization of biogenic magnetic nanoparticles (BMN was conducted. For this purpose in this paper a comparative analysis of amino acid sequences of proteins of magnetosome island of magnetotactic bacteria (MI MTB with human BS proteins using the program "BLAST-online" was made. A number of human BS may be potential producers of magnetic nanoparticles as evidenced by the experimental work of other authors. Considering obtained results it was shown that the interaction between tumor cells and some strains of human’s BS may occur due to the forces of magnetic dipole interaction, occuring between the endogenous magnetic nanoparticles of tumor cells and endogenous magnetosensitive particles of bacteria.

  19. Genomic diversification of giant enteric symbionts reflects host dietary lifestyles

    KAUST Repository

    Ngugi, David

    2017-08-24

    Herbivorous surgeonfishes are an ecologically successful group of reef fish that rely on marine algae as their principal food source. Here, we elucidated the significance of giant enteric symbionts colonizing these fishes regarding their roles in the digestive processes of hosts feeding predominantly on polysiphonous red algae and brown Turbinaria algae, which contain different polysaccharide constituents. Using metagenomics, single-cell genomics, and metatranscriptomic analyses, we provide evidence of metabolic diversification of enteric microbiota involved in the degradation of algal biomass in these fishes. The enteric microbiota is also phylogenetically and functionally simple relative to the complex lignocellulose-degrading microbiota of terrestrial herbivores. Over 90% of the enzymes for deconstructing algal polysaccharides emanate from members of a single bacterial lineage,

  20. Presumptive horizontal symbiont transmission in the fungus-growing termite Macrotermes natalensis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    de Fine Licht, Henrik Hjarvard; Boomsma, Jacobus Jan; Aanen, Duur Kornelis

    2006-01-01

    All colonies of the fungus-growing termite Macrotermes natalensis studied so far are associated with a single genetically variable lineage of Termitomyces symbionts. Such limited genetic variation of symbionts and the absence of sexual fruiting bodies (mushrooms) on M. natalensis mounds would...... transmission mode among Macrotermes species implies that vertical symbiont transmission can evolve rapidly. The unexpected finding of horizontal transmission makes the apparent absence of Termitomyces mushrooms on M. natalensis mounds puzzling. To our knowledge, this is the first detailed study of the genetic...

  1. Construction of a Metagenomic DNA Library of Sponge Symbionts and Screening of Antibacterial Metabolites

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHEN Juan; ZHU Tianjiao; LI Dehai; CUI Chengbin; FANG Yuchun; LIU Hongbing; LIU Peipei; GU Qianqun; ZHU Weiming

    2006-01-01

    To study the bioactive metabolites produced by sponge-derived uncultured symbionts, a metagenomic DNA library of the symbionts of sponge Gelliodes gracilis was constructed. The average size of DNA inserts in the library was 20 kb. This library was screened for antibiotic activity using paper disc assaying. Two clones displayed the antibacterial activity against Micrococcus tetragenus. The metabolites of these two clones were analyzed through HPLC. The result showed that their metabolites were quite different from those of the host E. coli DH5α and the host containing vector pHZ132. This study may present a new approach to exploring bioactive metabolites of sponge symbionts.

  2. Fungal osteomyelitis and septic arthritis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bariteau, Jason T; Waryasz, Gregory R; McDonnell, Matthew; Fischer, Staci A; Hayda, Roman A; Born, Christopher T

    2014-06-01

    Management of fungal osteomyelitis and fungal septic arthritis is challenging, especially in the setting of immunodeficiency and conditions that require immunosuppression. Because fungal osteomyelitis and fungal septic arthritis are rare conditions, study of their pathophysiology and treatment has been limited. In the literature, evidence-based treatment is lacking and, historically, outcomes have been poor. The most common offending organisms are Candida and Aspergillus, which are widely distributed in humans and soil. However, some fungal pathogens, such as Histoplasma, Blastomyces, Coccidioides, Cryptococcus, and Sporothrix, have more focal areas of endemicity. Fungal bone and joint infections result from direct inoculation, contiguous infection spread, or hematogenous seeding of organisms. These infections may be difficult to diagnose and eradicate, especially in the setting of total joint arthroplasty. Although there is no clear consensus on treatment, guidelines are available for management of many of these pathogens.

  3. Diversity and spatial structure of belowground plant-fungal symbiosis in a mixed subtropical forest of ectomycorrhizal and arbuscular mycorrhizal plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toju, Hirokazu; Sato, Hirotoshi; Tanabe, Akifumi S

    2014-01-01

    Plant-mycorrhizal fungal interactions are ubiquitous in forest ecosystems. While ectomycorrhizal plants and their fungi generally dominate temperate forests, arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis is common in the tropics. In subtropical regions, however, ectomycorrhizal and arbuscular mycorrhizal plants co-occur at comparable abundances in single forests, presumably generating complex community structures of root-associated fungi. To reveal root-associated fungal community structure in a mixed forest of ectomycorrhizal and arbuscular mycorrhizal plants, we conducted a massively-parallel pyrosequencing analysis, targeting fungi in the roots of 36 plant species that co-occur in a subtropical forest. In total, 580 fungal operational taxonomic units were detected, of which 132 and 58 were probably ectomycorrhizal and arbuscular mycorrhizal, respectively. As expected, the composition of fungal symbionts differed between fagaceous (ectomycorrhizal) and non-fagaceous (possibly arbuscular mycorrhizal) plants. However, non-fagaceous plants were associated with not only arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi but also several clades of ectomycorrhizal (e.g., Russula) and root-endophytic ascomycete fungi. Many of the ectomycorrhizal and root-endophytic fungi were detected from both fagaceous and non-fagaceous plants in the community. Interestingly, ectomycorrhizal and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi were concurrently detected from tiny root fragments of non-fagaceous plants. The plant-fungal associations in the forest were spatially structured, and non-fagaceous plant roots hosted ectomycorrhizal fungi more often in the proximity of ectomycorrhizal plant roots. Overall, this study suggests that belowground plant-fungal symbiosis in subtropical forests is complex in that it includes "non-typical" plant-fungal combinations (e.g., ectomycorrhizal fungi on possibly arbuscular mycorrhizal plants) that do not fall within the conventional classification of mycorrhizal symbioses, and in that

  4. Diversity and Spatial Structure of Belowground Plant–Fungal Symbiosis in a Mixed Subtropical Forest of Ectomycorrhizal and Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toju, Hirokazu; Sato, Hirotoshi; Tanabe, Akifumi S.

    2014-01-01

    Plant–mycorrhizal fungal interactions are ubiquitous in forest ecosystems. While ectomycorrhizal plants and their fungi generally dominate temperate forests, arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis is common in the tropics. In subtropical regions, however, ectomycorrhizal and arbuscular mycorrhizal plants co-occur at comparable abundances in single forests, presumably generating complex community structures of root-associated fungi. To reveal root-associated fungal community structure in a mixed forest of ectomycorrhizal and arbuscular mycorrhizal plants, we conducted a massively-parallel pyrosequencing analysis, targeting fungi in the roots of 36 plant species that co-occur in a subtropical forest. In total, 580 fungal operational taxonomic units were detected, of which 132 and 58 were probably ectomycorrhizal and arbuscular mycorrhizal, respectively. As expected, the composition of fungal symbionts differed between fagaceous (ectomycorrhizal) and non-fagaceous (possibly arbuscular mycorrhizal) plants. However, non-fagaceous plants were associated with not only arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi but also several clades of ectomycorrhizal (e.g., Russula) and root-endophytic ascomycete fungi. Many of the ectomycorrhizal and root-endophytic fungi were detected from both fagaceous and non-fagaceous plants in the community. Interestingly, ectomycorrhizal and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi were concurrently detected from tiny root fragments of non-fagaceous plants. The plant–fungal associations in the forest were spatially structured, and non-fagaceous plant roots hosted ectomycorrhizal fungi more often in the proximity of ectomycorrhizal plant roots. Overall, this study suggests that belowground plant–fungal symbiosis in subtropical forests is complex in that it includes “non-typical” plant–fungal combinations (e.g., ectomycorrhizal fungi on possibly arbuscular mycorrhizal plants) that do not fall within the conventional classification of mycorrhizal symbioses, and in

  5. Influence of phylogenetic conservatism and trait convergence on the interactions between fungal root endophytes and plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kia, Sevda Haghi; Glynou, Kyriaki; Nau, Thomas; Thines, Marco; Piepenbring, Meike; Maciá-Vicente, Jose G

    2017-03-01

    Plants associate through their roots with fungal assemblages that impact their abundance and productivity. Non-mycorrhizal endophytes constitute an important component of such fungal diversity, but their implication in ecosystem processes is little known. Using a selection of 128 root-endophytic strains, we defined functional groups based on their traits and plant interactions with potential to predict community assembly and symbiotic association processes. In vitro tests of the strains' interactions with Arabidopsis thaliana, Microthlaspi erraticum and Hordeum vulgare showed a net negative effect of fungal colonization on plant growth. The effects partly depended on the phylogenetic affiliation of strains, but also varied considerably depending on the plant-strain combination. The variation was partly explained by fungal traits shared by different lineages, like growth rates or melanization. The origin of strains also affected their symbioses, with endophytes isolated from Microthlaspi spp. populations being more detrimental to M. erraticum than strains from other sources. Our findings suggest that plant-endophyte associations are subject to local processes of selection, in which particular combinations of symbionts are favored across landscapes. We also show that different common endophytic taxa have differential sets of traits found to affect interactions, hinting to a functional complementarity that can explain their frequent co-existence in natural communities.

  6. Plant host and soil origin influence fungal and bacterial assemblages in the roots of woody plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonito, Gregory; Reynolds, Hannah; Robeson, Michael S; Nelson, Jessica; Hodkinson, Brendan P; Tuskan, Gerald; Schadt, Christopher W; Vilgalys, Rytas

    2014-07-01

    Microbial communities in plant roots provide critical links between above- and belowground processes in terrestrial ecosystems. Variation in root communities has been attributed to plant host effects and microbial host preferences, as well as to factors pertaining to soil conditions, microbial biogeography and the presence of viable microbial propagules. To address hypotheses regarding the influence of plant host and soil biogeography on root fungal and bacterial communities, we designed a trap-plant bioassay experiment. Replicate Populus, Quercus and Pinus plants were grown in three soils originating from alternate field sites. Fungal and bacterial community profiles in the root of each replicate were assessed through multiplex 454 amplicon sequencing of four loci (i.e., 16S, SSU, ITS, LSU rDNA). Soil origin had a larger effect on fungal community composition than did host species, but the opposite was true for bacterial communities. Populus hosted the highest diversity of rhizospheric fungi and bacteria. Root communities on Quercus and Pinus were more similar to each other than to Populus. Overall, fungal root symbionts appear to be more constrained by dispersal and biogeography than by host availability.

  7. Occurrence of Photobacterium leiognathi, as the bait organ symbiont in frogfish Antennarius hispidus

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Ramaiah, N.; Chandramohan, D.

    . Occurrence of P. leiognathi as the bait organ symbiont of A. hispidus is the first report. Being very strong mimics of their surrounding, frogfishes may couple the bacterial bioluminescence originating from their bait organs with that of their camouflaging...

  8. Investigations on abundance and activity of microbial sponge symbionts using quantitative real - time PCR

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kumala, Lars; Hentschel, Ute; Bayer, Kristina

    Marine sponges are hosts to dense and diverse microbial consortia that are likely to play a key role in the metabolic processes of the host sponge due to their enormous abundance. Common symbioses between nitrogen transforming microorganisms and sponges indicate complex nitrogen cycling within...... the host. Of particular interest is determining the community structure and function of microbial symbionts in order to gain deeper insight into host-symbiont interactions. We investigated the abundance and activity of microbial symbionts in two Mediterranean sponge species using quantitative real-time PCR....... An absolute quantification of functional genes and transcripts in archaeal and bacterial symbionts was conducted to determine their involvement in nitrification and denitrification, comparing the low microbial abundance (LMA) sponge Dysidea avara with the high microbial abundance (HMA) representative Aplysina...

  9. Temporal changes of symbiont density and host fitness after rifampicin treatment in a whitefly of the Bemisia tabaci species complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shan, Hong-Wei; Zhang, Chang-Rong; Yan, Ting-Ting; Tang, Hai-Qin; Wang, Xiao-Wei; Liu, Shu-Sheng; Liu, Yin-Quan

    2016-04-01

    Microbial symbionts are essential or important partners to phloem-feeding insects. Antibiotics have been used to selectively eliminate symbionts from their host insects and establish host lines with or without certain symbionts for investigating functions of the symbionts. In this study, using the antibiotic rifampicin we attempted to selectively eliminate certain symbionts from a population of the Middle East-Asia Minor 1 whitefly of the Bemisia tabaci species complex, which harbors the primary symbiont "Candidatus Portiera aleyrodidarum" and two secondary symbionts "Candidatus Hamiltonella defensa" and Rickettsia. Neither the primary nor the secondary symbionts were completely depleted in the adults (F0) that fed for 48 h on a diet treated with rifampicin at concentrations of 1-100 μg/mL. However, both the primary and secondary symbionts were nearly completely depleted in the offspring (F1) of the rifampicin-treated adults. Although the F1 adults produced some eggs (F2), most of the eggs failed to hatch and none of them reached the second instar, and consequently the rifampicin-treated whitefly colony vanished at the F2 generation. Interestingly, quantitative polymerase chain reaction assays showed that in the rifampicin-treated whiteflies, the density of the primary symbiont was reduced at an obviously slower pace than the secondary symbionts. Mating experiments between rifampicin-treated and untreated adults demonstrated that the negative effects of rifampicin on host fitness were expressed when the females were treated by the antibiotic, and whether males were treated or not by the antibiotic had little contribution to the negative effects. These observations indicate that with this whitefly population it is not feasible to selectively eliminate the secondary symbionts using rifampicin without affecting the primary symbiont and establish host lines for experimental studies. However, the extinction of the whitefly colony at the second generation after

  10. Population genomics of a symbiont in the early stages of a pest invasion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Amanda M V; Huynh, Lynn Y; Bolender, Caitlin M; Nelson, Kelly G; McCutcheon, John P

    2014-03-01

    Invasive species often depend on microbial symbionts, but few studies have examined the evolutionary dynamics of symbionts during the early stages of an invasion. The insect Megacopta cribraria and its bacterial nutritional symbiont Candidatus Ishikawaella capsulata invaded the southeastern US in 2009. While M. cribraria was initially discovered on wild kudzu plants, it was found as a pest on soybeans within 1 year of infestation. Because prior research suggests Ishikawaella confers the pest status--that is, the ability to thrive on soybeans--in some Megacopta species, we performed a genomic study on Ishikawaella from US. Megacopta cribraria populations to understand the role of the symbiont in driving host plant preferences. We included Ishikawaella samples collected in the first days of the invasion in 2009 and from 23 locations across the insect's 2011 US range. The 0.75 Mb symbiont genome revealed only 47 fixed differences from the pest-conferring Ishikawaella in Japan, with only one amino acid change in a nutrition-provisioning gene. This similarity, along with a lack of fixed substitutions in the US symbiont population, indicates that Ishikawella likely arrived in the US capable of being a soybean pest. Analyses of allele frequency changes between 2009 and 2011 uncover signatures of both positive and negative selection and suggest that symbionts on soybeans and kudzu experience differential selection for genes related to nutrient provisioning. Our data reveal the evolutionary trajectory of an important insect-bacteria symbiosis in the early stages of an invasion, highlighting the role microbial symbionts may play in the spread of invasive species.

  11. Fungal biodiversity to biotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chambergo, Felipe S; Valencia, Estela Y

    2016-03-01

    Fungal habitats include soil, water, and extreme environments. With around 100,000 fungus species already described, it is estimated that 5.1 million fungus species exist on our planet, making fungi one of the largest and most diverse kingdoms of eukaryotes. Fungi show remarkable metabolic features due to a sophisticated genomic network and are important for the production of biotechnological compounds that greatly impact our society in many ways. In this review, we present the current state of knowledge on fungal biodiversity, with special emphasis on filamentous fungi and the most recent discoveries in the field of identification and production of biotechnological compounds. More than 250 fungus species have been studied to produce these biotechnological compounds. This review focuses on three of the branches generally accepted in biotechnological applications, which have been identified by a color code: red, green, and white for pharmaceutical, agricultural, and industrial biotechnology, respectively. We also discuss future prospects for the use of filamentous fungi in biotechnology application.

  12. Effects of substrate, ant and fungal species on plant fiber degradation in a fungus-gardening ant symbiosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeMilto, Alexandria M; Rouquette, Monte; Mueller, Ulrich G; Kellner, Katrin; Seal, Jon N

    2017-04-01

    Fungus-gardening or attine ants have outsourced most of their digestive function to a symbiotic fungus. The ants feed their fungus - essentially an external digestive organ - a variety of substrates of botanical origin, including fresh and dried flowers, leaves and insect frass (processed leaves). Although plant tissues are rich in fibers (lignocelluloses, hemicelluloses, pectins and starches) and the symbiotic fungus possesses the genetic and enzymatic machinery to metabolize these compounds, the highly derived attines, the leaf-cutters (Atta and Acromyrmex), are known to produce fiber-rich waste. While leaf-cutting ants are important consumers of primary plant tissue, there have been fewer studies on physiological activity of fungi grown by closely related ant species in the genus Trachymyrmex, which generally grow related species of fungi, have smaller colonies and consume a wider variety of fungal substrates in addition to fresh leaves and flowers. In this study, we measured the cellulase activity of the fungus-gardening ants Atta texana, Trachymyrmex arizonensis and T. septentrionalis. We then quantified fiber consumption of the fungus-gardening ants Trachymyrmex septentrionalis and Trachymyrmex arizonensis by comparing the amounts and percentages present in their food and in fungus garden refuse during a controlled feeding experiment over the span of several months. Finally, we compared waste composition of T. arizonensis colonies growing different fungal strains, because this species is known to cultivate multiple strains of Leucoagaricus in its native range. The leaf-cutting ant A. texana was found to have lower cellulytic activity than T. arizonensis or T. septentrionalis. Total lignocellulose and hemicellulose amounts were significantly lower in refuse piles than in the substrates fed to the Trachymyrmex colonies, thus these fibers were consumed by the fungal symbionts of these ant species. Although lignocellulose utilization was similar in two distinct

  13. Contrasting Patterns of Diterpene Acid Induction by Red Pine and White Spruce to Simulated Bark Beetle Attack, and Interspecific Differences in Sensitivity Among Fungal Associates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mason, Charles J; Klepzig, Kier D; Kopper, Brian J; Kersten, Philip J; Illman, Barbara L; Raffa, Kenneth F

    2015-06-01

    Conifers possess a suite of physiochemical defenses that protect their subcortical tissues from bark beetle - fungal complexes. These defenses include rapid induction of terpenoids and phenolics at the site of attack. Studies of the distribution, induction, and bioactivity of conifer terpenoids have focused heavily on monoterpenes. We assessed induction of diterpene acids in white spruce (Picea glauca) and red pine (Pinus resinosa) to fungal associates of two bark beetles, and the responses of four spruce beetle (Dendroctonus rufipennis)-associated fungi to three diterpene acids. Constitutive phloem contents differed between species, in that red pine had extremely low concentrations of diterpene acids, whereas white spruce had substantial constitutive levels. Induction differed quantitatively. Both red pine and white spruce exhibited marked increases, but red pine underwent greater increases and achieved higher concentrations than white spruce. Induction also differed qualitatively in that red pine showed lower diversity and fewer compositional changes during induction than white spruce. In red pine,fungal inoculation accompanying wounding elicited greater increases than wounding alone, but in white spruce total concentrations were higher following wounding alone. Spruce beetle fungal symbiont growth varied among species and compounds. Some diterpenes elicited both stimulatory and inhibitory effects on fungi, depending on concentration. All four fungi exhibited higher tolerances compared to those associated with pine bark beetles in previous studies. Variation in tolerances to, and potentially metabolism of, diterpene acids by symbionts may reflect differences in constitutive levels between spruce and pine, and partially explain differences in concentrations achieved during induction.

  14. The symbiotic role of O-antigen of Burkholderia symbiont in association with host Riptortus pedestris.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Jiyeun Kate; Park, Ha Young; Lee, Bok Luel

    2016-07-01

    Riptortus pedestris harboring Burkholderia symbiont is a useful symbiosis model to study the molecular interactions between insects and bacteria. We recently reported that the lipopolysaccharide O-antigen is absent in the Burkholderia symbionts isolated from Riptortus guts. Here, we investigated the symbiotic role of O-antigen comprehensively in the Riptortus-Burkholderia model. Firstly, Burkholderia mutant strains deficient of O-antigen biosynthesis genes were generated and confirmed for their different patterns of the lipopolysaccharide by electrophoretic analysis. The O-antigen-deficient mutant strains initially exhibited a reduction of infectivity, having significantly lower level of symbiont population at the second-instar stage. However, both the wild-type and O-antigen mutant symbionts exhibited a similar level of symbiont population from the third-instar stage, indicating that the O-antigen deficiency did not affect the bacterial persistence in the host midgut. Taken together, we showed that the lipopolysaccharide O-antigen of gut symbiont plays an exclusive role in the initial symbiotic association.

  15. Convergent patterns in the evolution of mealybug symbioses involving different intrabacterial symbionts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szabó, Gitta; Schulz, Frederik; Toenshoff, Elena R; Volland, Jean-Marie; Finkel, Omri M; Belkin, Shimshon; Horn, Matthias

    2017-03-01

    Mealybugs (Insecta: Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae) maintain obligatory relationships with bacterial symbionts, which provide essential nutrients to their insect hosts. Most pseudococcinae mealybugs harbor a unique symbiosis setup with enlarged betaproteobacterial symbionts ('Candidatus Tremblaya princeps'), which themselves contain gammaproteobacterial symbionts. Here we investigated the symbiosis of the manna mealybug, Trabutina mannipara, using a metagenomic approach. Phylogenetic analyses revealed that the intrabacterial symbiont of T. mannipara represents a novel lineage within the Gammaproteobacteria, for which we propose the tentative name 'Candidatus Trabutinella endobia'. Combining our results with previous data available for the nested symbiosis of the citrus mealybug Planococcus citri, we show that synthesis of essential amino acids and vitamins and translation-related functions partition between the symbiotic partners in a highly similar manner in the two systems, despite the distinct evolutionary origin of the intrabacterial symbionts. Bacterial genes found in both mealybug genomes and complementing missing functions in both symbioses were likely integrated in ancestral mealybugs before T. mannipara and P. citri diversified. The high level of correspondence between the two mealybug systems and their highly intertwined metabolic pathways are unprecedented. Our work contributes to a better understanding of the only known intracellular symbiosis between two bacteria and suggests that the evolution of this unique symbiosis included the replacement of intrabacterial symbionts in ancestral mealybugs.

  16. Whitefly genome expression reveals host-symbiont interaction in amino acid biosynthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Upadhyay, Santosh Kumar; Sharma, Shailesh; Singh, Harpal; Dixit, Sameer; Kumar, Jitesh; Verma, Praveen C; Chandrashekar, K

    2015-01-01

    Whitefly (Bemisia tabaci) complex is a serious insect pest of several crop plants worldwide. It comprises several morphologically indistinguishable species, however very little is known about their genetic divergence and biosynthetic pathways. In the present study, we performed transcriptome sequencing of Asia 1 species of B. tabaci complex and analyzed the interaction of host-symbiont genes in amino acid biosynthetic pathways. We obtained about 83 million reads using Illumina sequencing that assembled into 72716 unitigs. A total of 21129 unitigs were annotated at stringent parameters. Annotated unitigs were mapped to 52847 gene ontology (GO) terms and 131 Kyoto encyclopedia of genes and genomes (KEGG) pathways. Expression analysis of the genes involved in amino acid biosynthesis pathways revealed the complementation between whitefly and its symbiont partner Candidatus Portiera aleyrodidarum. Most of the non-essential amino acids and intermediates of essential amino acid pathways were supplied by the host insect to its symbiont. The symbiont expressed the pathways for the essential amino acids arginine, threonine and tryptophan and the immediate precursors of valine, leucine, isoleucine and phenyl-alanine. High level expression of the amino acid transporters in the whitefly suggested the molecular mechanisms for the exchange of amino acids between the host and the symbiont. Our study provides a comprehensive transcriptome data for Asia 1 species of B. tabaci complex that focusses light on integration of host and symbiont genes in amino acid biosynthesis pathways.

  17. Vitamin supplementation by gut symbionts ensures metabolic homeostasis in an insect host

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salem, Hassan; Bauer, Eugen; Strauss, Anja S.; Vogel, Heiko; Marz, Manja; Kaltenpoth, Martin

    2014-01-01

    Despite the demonstrated functional importance of gut microbes, our understanding of how animals regulate their metabolism in response to nutritionally beneficial symbionts remains limited. Here, we elucidate the functional importance of the African cotton stainer's (Dysdercus fasciatus) association with two actinobacterial gut symbionts and subsequently examine the insect's transcriptional response following symbiont elimination. In line with bioassays demonstrating the symbionts' contribution towards host fitness through the supplementation of B vitamins, comparative transcriptomic analyses of genes involved in import and processing of B vitamins revealed an upregulation of gene expression in aposymbiotic (symbiont-free) compared with symbiotic individuals; an expression pattern that is indicative of B vitamin deficiency in animals. Normal expression levels of these genes, however, can be restored by either artificial supplementation of B vitamins into the insect's diet or reinfection with the actinobacterial symbionts. Furthermore, the functional characterization of the differentially expressed thiamine transporter 2 through heterologous expression in Xenopus laevis oocytes confirms its role in cellular uptake of vitamin B1. These findings demonstrate that despite an extracellular localization, beneficial gut microbes can be integral to the host's metabolic homeostasis, reminiscent of bacteriome-localized intracellular mutualists. PMID:25339726

  18. Bacterial symbionts of the leafhopper Evacanthus interruptus (Linnaeus, 1758) (Insecta, Hemiptera, Cicadellidae: Evacanthinae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szklarzewicz, Teresa; Grzywacz, Beata; Szwedo, Jacek; Michalik, Anna

    2016-03-01

    Plant sap-feeding hemipterans harbor obligate symbiotic microorganisms which are responsible for the synthesis of amino acids missing in their diet. In this study, we characterized the obligate symbionts hosted in the body of the xylem-feeding leafhopper Evacanthus interruptus (Cicadellidae: Evacanthinae: Evacanthini) by means of histological, ultrastructural and molecular methods. We observed that E. interruptus is associated with two types of symbiotic microorganisms: bacterium 'Candidatus Sulcia muelleri' (Bacteroidetes) and betaproteobacterium that is closely related to symbionts which reside in two other Cicadellidae representatives: Pagaronia tredecimpunctata (Evacanthinae: Pagaronini) and Hylaius oregonensis (Bathysmatophorinae: Bathysmatophorini). Both symbionts are harbored in their own bacteriocytes which are localized between the body wall and ovaries. In E. interruptus, both Sulcia and betaproteobacterial symbionts are transovarially transmitted from one generation to the next. In the mature female, symbionts leave the bacteriocytes and gather around the posterior pole of the terminal oocytes. Then, they gradually pass through the cytoplasm of follicular cells surrounding the posterior pole of the oocyte and enter the space between them and the oocyte. The bacteria accumulate in the deep depression of the oolemma and form a characteristic 'symbiont ball'. In the light of the results obtained, the phylogenetic relationships within modern Cicadomorpha and some Cicadellidae subfamilies are discussed.

  19. Bacterial symbionts in insects or the story of communities affecting communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrari, Julia; Vavre, Fabrice

    2011-05-12

    Bacterial symbionts are widespread in insects and other animals. Most of them are predominantly vertically transmitted, along with their hosts' genes, and thus extend the heritable genetic variation present in one species. These passengers have a variety of repercussions on the host's phenotypes: besides the cost imposed on the host for maintaining the symbiont population, they can provide fitness advantages to the host or manipulate the host's reproduction. We argue that insect symbioses are ideal model systems for community genetics. First, bacterial symbionts directly or indirectly affect the interactions with other species within a community. Examples include their involvement in modifying the use of host plants by phytophagous insects, in providing resistance to natural enemies, but also in reducing the global genetic diversity or gene flow between populations within some species. Second, one emerging picture in insect symbioses is that many species are simultaneously infected with more than one symbiont, which permits studying the factors that shape bacterial communities; for example, horizontal transmission, interactions between host genotype, symbiont genotype and the environment and interactions among symbionts. One conclusion is that insects' symbiotic complements are dynamic communities that affect and are affected by the communities in which they are embedded.

  20. Managing acute invasive fungal sinusitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dwyhalo, Kristina M; Donald, Carrlene; Mendez, Anthony; Hoxworth, Joseph

    2016-01-01

    Acute invasive fungal sinusitis is the most aggressive form of fungal sinusitis and can be fatal, especially in patients who are immunosuppressed. Early diagnosis and intervention are crucial and potentially lifesaving, so primary care providers must maintain a high index of suspicion for this disease. Patients may need to be admitted to the hospital for IV antifungal therapy and surgical debridement.

  1. Current management of fungal infections.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meis, J.F.G.M.; Verweij, P.E.

    2001-01-01

    The management of superficial fungal infections differs significantly from the management of systemic fungal infections. Most superficial infections are treated with topical antifungal agents, the choice of agent being determined by the site and extent of the infection and by the causative organism,

  2. The evolution of fungal epiphytes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hongsanan, S.; Sánchez-Ramírez, S.; Crous, P.W.; Ariyawansa, H.A.; Zhao, R.L.; Hyde, K.D.

    2016-01-01

    Fungal epiphytes are a polyphyletic group found on the surface of plants, particularly on leaves, with a worldwide distribution. They belong in the phylum Ascomycota, which contains the largest known number of fungal genera. There has been little research dating the origins of the common ancestors o

  3. Algal endosymbiosis in brown hydra: host/symbiont specificity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahat, M; Reich, V

    1986-12-01

    Host/symbiont specificity has been investigated in non-symbiotic and aposymbiotic brown and green hydra infected with various free-living and symbiotic species and strains of Chlorella and Chlorococcum. Morphology and ultrastructure of the symbioses obtained have been compared. Aposymbiotic Swiss Hydra viridis and Japanese H. magnipapillata served as controls. In two strains of H. attenuata stable hereditary symbioses were obtained with Chlorococcum isolated from H. magnipapillata. In one strain of H. vulgaris, in H. oligactis and in aposymbiotic H. viridis chlorococci persisted for more than a week. Eight species of free-living Chlorococcum, 10 symbiotic and 10 free-living strains of Chlorella disappeared from the brown hydra within 1-2 days. In H. magnipapillata there was a graded distribution of chlorococci along the polyps. In hypostomal cells there were greater than 30 algae/cell while in endodermal cells of the mid-section or peduncle less than 10 algae/cell were found. In H. attenuata the algal distribution was irregular, there were up to five chlorocci/cell, and up to 20 cells/hydra hosted algae. In the dark most cells of Chlorococcum disappeared from H. magnipapillata and aposymbiotic hydra were obtained. Chlorococcum is thus an obligate phototroph, and host-dependent heterotrophy is not required for the preservation of a symbiosis. The few chlorococci that survived in the dark seem to belong to a less-demanding physiological strain. In variance with known Chlorella/H. viridis endosymbioses the chlorococci in H. magnipapillata and H. attenuata were tightly enveloped in the vacuolar membrane of the hosting cells with no visible perialgal space. Chlorococcum reproduced in these vacuoles and up to eight daughter cells were found within the same vacuole. We suggest that the graded or scant distribution of chlorococci in the various brown hydra, their inability to live in H. viridis and the inability of the various chlorellae to live in brown hydra are the

  4. Superresolution imaging captures carbohydrate utilization dynamics in human gut symbionts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karunatilaka, Krishanthi S; Cameron, Elizabeth A; Martens, Eric C; Koropatkin, Nicole M; Biteen, Julie S

    2014-11-11

    Gut microbes play a key role in human health and nutrition by catabolizing a wide variety of glycans via enzymatic activities that are not encoded in the human genome. The ability to recognize and process carbohydrates strongly influences the structure of the gut microbial community. While the effects of diet on the microbiota are well documented, little is known about the molecular processes driving metabolism. To provide mechanistic insight into carbohydrate catabolism in gut symbionts, we studied starch processing in real time in the model Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron starch utilization system (Sus) by single-molecule fluorescence. Although previous studies have explored Sus protein structure and function, the transient interactions, assembly, and collaboration of these outer membrane proteins have not yet been elucidated in live cells. Our live-cell superresolution imaging reveals that the polymeric starch substrate dynamically recruits Sus proteins, serving as an external scaffold for bacterial membrane assembly of the Sus complex, which may promote efficient capturing and degradation of starch. Furthermore, by simultaneously localizing multiple Sus outer membrane proteins on the B. thetaiotaomicron cell surface, we have characterized the dynamics and stoichiometry of starch-induced Sus complex assembly on the molecular scale. Finally, based on Sus protein knockout strains, we have discerned the mechanism of starch-induced Sus complex assembly in live anaerobic cells with nanometer-scale resolution. Our insights into the starch-induced outer membrane protein assembly central to this conserved nutrient uptake mechanism pave the way for the development of dietary or pharmaceutical therapies to control Bacteroidetes in the intestinal tract to enhance human health and treat disease. In this study, we used nanometer-scale superresolution imaging to reveal dynamic interactions between the proteins involved in starch processing by the prominent human gut symbiont

  5. Why Mycophoris is not an orchid seedling, and why Synaptomitus is not a fungal symbiont within this fossil1

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Selosse, Marc-Andre; Brundrett, Mark; Dearnaley, John

    2017-01-01

    A recent publication in Botany introduced two new taxa: a fossil orchid seed (Mycophoris) and a fossilized basidiomycete fungus (Synaptomitus) in an alleged relationship with this orchid, encased in 15–20 million year old Dominican amber (Poinar, G. 2017. Two new genera, Mycophoris gen. nov......., (Orchidaceae) and Synaptomitus gen. nov. (Basidiomycota) based on a fossil seed with developing embryo and associated fungus in Dominican amber. Botany, 95: 1–8). From the working knowledge of extant orchid seeds, seedlings, and mycorrhiza shared among us, we cannot support these interpretations. Here we...

  6. Effects of symbiotic bacteria and tree chemistry on the growth and reproduction of bark beetle fungal symbionts

    Science.gov (United States)

    A.S. Adams; C.R. Currie; Y. Cardoza; K.D. Klepzig; K.F. Raffa

    2009-01-01

    Bark beetles are associated with diverse assemblages of microorganisms, many of which affect their interactions with host plants and natural enemies. We tested how bacterial associates of three bark beetles with various types of host relationships affect growth and reproduction of their symbiotic fungi. Fungi were exposed to volatiles...

  7. Co-infection and localization of secondary symbionts in two whitefly species

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    Background Whiteflies are cosmopolitan phloem-feeding pests that cause serious damage to many crops worldwide due to direct feeding and vectoring of many plant viruses. The sweetpotato whitefly Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius) and the greenhouse whitefly Trialeurodes vaporariorum (Westwood) are two of the most widespread and damaging whitefly species. To complete their unbalanced diet, whiteflies harbor the obligatory bacterium Portiera aleyrodidarum. B. tabaci further harbors a diverse array of secondary symbionts, including Hamiltonella, Arsenophonus, Cardinium, Wolbachia, Rickettsia and Fritschea. T. vaporariorum is only known to harbor P. aleyrodidarum and Arsenophonus. We conducted a study to survey the distribution of whitefly species in Croatia, their infection status by secondary symbionts, and the spatial distribution of these symbionts in the developmental stages of the two whitefly species. Results T. vaporariorum was found to be the predominant whitefly species across Croatia, while only the Q biotype of B. tabaci was found across the coastal part of the country. Arsenophonus and Hamiltonella were detected in collected T. vaporariorum populations, however, not all populations harbored both symbionts, and both symbionts showed 100% infection rate in some of the populations. Only the Q biotype of B. tabaci was found in the populations tested and they harbored Hamiltonella, Rickettsia, Wolbachia and Cardinium, while Arsenophonus and Fritschea were not detected in any B. tabaci populations. None of the detected symbionts appeared in all populations tested, and multiple infections were detected in some of the populations. All endosymbionts tested were localized inside the bacteriocyte in both species, but only Rickettsia and Cardinium in B. tabaci showed additional localization outside the bacteriocyte. Conclusions Our study revealed unique co-infection patterns by secondary symbionts in B. tabaci and T. vaporariorum. Co-sharing of the bacteriocyte by the primary

  8. Co-infection and localization of secondary symbionts in two whitefly species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kontsedalov Svetlana

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Whiteflies are cosmopolitan phloem-feeding pests that cause serious damage to many crops worldwide due to direct feeding and vectoring of many plant viruses. The sweetpotato whitefly Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius and the greenhouse whitefly Trialeurodes vaporariorum (Westwood are two of the most widespread and damaging whitefly species. To complete their unbalanced diet, whiteflies harbor the obligatory bacterium Portiera aleyrodidarum. B. tabaci further harbors a diverse array of secondary symbionts, including Hamiltonella, Arsenophonus, Cardinium, Wolbachia, Rickettsia and Fritschea. T. vaporariorum is only known to harbor P. aleyrodidarum and Arsenophonus. We conducted a study to survey the distribution of whitefly species in Croatia, their infection status by secondary symbionts, and the spatial distribution of these symbionts in the developmental stages of the two whitefly species. Results T. vaporariorum was found to be the predominant whitefly species across Croatia, while only the Q biotype of B. tabaci was found across the coastal part of the country. Arsenophonus and Hamiltonella were detected in collected T. vaporariorum populations, however, not all populations harbored both symbionts, and both symbionts showed 100% infection rate in some of the populations. Only the Q biotype of B. tabaci was found in the populations tested and they harbored Hamiltonella, Rickettsia, Wolbachia and Cardinium, while Arsenophonus and Fritschea were not detected in any B. tabaci populations. None of the detected symbionts appeared in all populations tested, and multiple infections were detected in some of the populations. All endosymbionts tested were localized inside the bacteriocyte in both species, but only Rickettsia and Cardinium in B. tabaci showed additional localization outside the bacteriocyte. Conclusions Our study revealed unique co-infection patterns by secondary symbionts in B. tabaci and T. vaporariorum. Co-sharing of the

  9. The Arthromitus stage of Bacillus cereus: intestinal symbionts of animals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margulis, L.; Jorgensen, J. Z.; Dolan, S.; Kolchinsky, R.; Rainey, F. A.; Lo, S. C.

    1998-01-01

    In the guts of more than 25 species of arthropods we observed filaments containing refractile inclusions previously discovered and named "Arthromitus" in 1849 by Joseph Leidy [Leidy, J. (1849) Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia 4, 225-233]. We cultivated these microbes from boiled intestines of 10 different species of surface-cleaned soil insects and isopod crustaceans. Literature review and these observations lead us to conclude that Arthromitus are spore-forming, variably motile, cultivable bacilli. As long rod-shaped bacteria, they lose their flagella, attach by fibers or fuzz to the intestinal epithelium, grow filamentously, and sporulate from their distal ends. When these organisms are incubated in culture, their life history stages are accelerated by light and inhibited by anoxia. Characterization of new Arthromitus isolates from digestive tracts of common sow bugs (Porcellio scaber), roaches (Gromphodorhina portentosa, Blaberus giganteus) and termites (Cryptotermes brevis, Kalotermes flavicollis) identifies these flagellated, spore-forming symbionts as a Bacillus sp. Complete sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene from four isolates (two sow bug, one hissing roach, one death's head roach) confirms these as the low-G+C Gram-positive eubacterium Bacillus cereus. We suggest that B. cereus and its close relatives, easily isolated from soil and grown on nutrient agar, enjoy filamentous growth in moist nutrient-rich intestines of healthy arthropods and similar habitats.

  10. Marine sponges and their microbial symbionts: love and other relationships.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webster, Nicole S; Taylor, Michael W

    2012-02-01

    Many marine sponges harbour dense and diverse microbial communities of considerable ecological and biotechnological importance. While the past decade has seen tremendous advances in our understanding of the phylogenetic diversity of sponge-associated microorganisms (more than 25 bacterial phyla have now been reported from sponges), it is only in the past 3-4 years that the in situ activity and function of these microbes has become a major research focus. Already the rewards of this new emphasis are evident, with genomics and experimental approaches yielding novel insights into symbiont function. Key steps in the nitrogen cycle [denitrification, anaerobic ammonium oxidation (Anammox)] have recently been demonstrated in sponges for the first time, with diverse bacteria - including the sponge-associated candidate phylum 'Poribacteria'- being implicated in these processes. In this minireview we examine recent major developments in the microbiology of sponges, and identify several research areas (e.g. biology of viruses in sponges, effects of environmental stress) that we believe are deserving of increased attention. © 2011 Society for Applied Microbiology and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  11. The Arthromitus stage of Bacillus cereus: intestinal symbionts of animals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margulis, L.; Jorgensen, J. Z.; Dolan, S.; Kolchinsky, R.; Rainey, F. A.; Lo, S. C.

    1998-01-01

    In the guts of more than 25 species of arthropods we observed filaments containing refractile inclusions previously discovered and named "Arthromitus" in 1849 by Joseph Leidy [Leidy, J. (1849) Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia 4, 225-233]. We cultivated these microbes from boiled intestines of 10 different species of surface-cleaned soil insects and isopod crustaceans. Literature review and these observations lead us to conclude that Arthromitus are spore-forming, variably motile, cultivable bacilli. As long rod-shaped bacteria, they lose their flagella, attach by fibers or fuzz to the intestinal epithelium, grow filamentously, and sporulate from their distal ends. When these organisms are incubated in culture, their life history stages are accelerated by light and inhibited by anoxia. Characterization of new Arthromitus isolates from digestive tracts of common sow bugs (Porcellio scaber), roaches (Gromphodorhina portentosa, Blaberus giganteus) and termites (Cryptotermes brevis, Kalotermes flavicollis) identifies these flagellated, spore-forming symbionts as a Bacillus sp. Complete sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene from four isolates (two sow bug, one hissing roach, one death's head roach) confirms these as the low-G+C Gram-positive eubacterium Bacillus cereus. We suggest that B. cereus and its close relatives, easily isolated from soil and grown on nutrient agar, enjoy filamentous growth in moist nutrient-rich intestines of healthy arthropods and similar habitats.

  12. Endozoicomonas Are Specific, Facultative Symbionts of Sea Squirts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schreiber, Lars; Kjeldsen, Kasper U.; Funch, Peter; Jensen, Jeppe; Obst, Matthias; López-Legentil, Susanna; Schramm, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    Ascidians are marine filter feeders and harbor diverse microbiota that can exhibit a high degree of host-specificity. Pharyngeal samples of Scandinavian and Mediterranean ascidians were screened for consistently associated bacteria by culture-dependent and -independent approaches. Representatives of the Endozoicomonas (Gammaproteobacteria, Hahellaceae) clade were detected in the ascidian species Ascidiella aspersa, Ascidiella scabra, Botryllus schlosseri, Ciona intestinalis, Styela clava, and multiple Ascidia/Ascidiella spp. In total, Endozoicomonas was detected in more than half of all specimens screened, and in 25–100% of the specimens for each species. The retrieved Endozoicomonas 16S rRNA gene sequences formed an ascidian-specific subclade, whose members were detected by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) as extracellular microcolonies in the pharynx. Two strains of the ascidian-specific Endozoicomonas subclade were isolated in pure culture and characterized. Both strains are chemoorganoheterotrophs and grow on mucin (a mucus glycoprotein). The strains tested negative for cytotoxic or antibacterial activity. Based on these observations, we propose ascidian-associated Endozoicomonas to be commensals, living off the mucus continuously secreted into the pharynx. Members of the ascidian-specific Endozoicomonas subclade were also detected in seawater from the Scandinavian sampling site, which suggests acquisition of the symbionts by horizontal transmission. The combined results indicate a host-specific, yet facultative symbiosis between ascidians and Endozoicomonas. PMID:27462299

  13. Comparative Genomics of a Parthenogenesis-Inducing Wolbachia Symbiont

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amelia R. I. Lindsey

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Wolbachia is an intracellular symbiont of invertebrates responsible for inducing a wide variety of phenotypes in its host. These host-Wolbachia relationships span the continuum from reproductive parasitism to obligate mutualism, and provide a unique system to study genomic changes associated with the evolution of symbiosis. We present the genome sequence from a parthenogenesis-inducing Wolbachia strain (wTpre infecting the minute parasitoid wasp Trichogramma pretiosum. The wTpre genome is the most complete parthenogenesis-inducing Wolbachia genome available to date. We used comparative genomics across 16 Wolbachia strains, representing five supergroups, to identify a core Wolbachia genome of 496 sets of orthologous genes. Only 14 of these sets are unique to Wolbachia when compared to other bacteria from the Rickettsiales. We show that the B supergroup of Wolbachia, of which wTpre is a member, contains a significantly higher number of ankyrin repeat-containing genes than other supergroups. In the wTpre genome, there is evidence for truncation of the protein coding sequences in 20% of ORFs, mostly as a result of frameshift mutations. The wTpre strain represents a conversion from cytoplasmic incompatibility to a parthenogenesis-inducing lifestyle, and is required for reproduction in the Trichogramma host it infects. We hypothesize that the large number of coding frame truncations has accompanied the change in reproductive mode of the wTpre strain.

  14. Fungal communities in gardens of the leafcutter ant Atta cephalotes in forest and cabruca agrosystems of southern Bahia State (Brazil).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reis, Bárbara Monique dos Santos; Silva, Aline; Alvarez, Martín Roberto; Oliveira, Tássio Brito de; Rodrigues, Andre

    2015-12-01

    Leaf-cutting ants interact with several fungi in addition to the fungal symbiont they cultivate for food. Here, we assessed alien fungal communities in colonies of Atta cephalotes. Fungus garden fragments were sampled from colonies in the Atlantic Rainforest and in a cabruca agrosystem in the state of Bahia (Brazil) in two distinct periods to evaluate whether differences in nest habitat influence the diversity of fungi in the ant colonies. We recovered a total of 403 alien fungi isolates from 628 garden fragments. The prevalent taxa found in these samples were Escovopsis sp. (26 %), Escovopsioides nivea (24 %), and Trichoderma spirale (10.9 %). Fungal diversity was similar between the colonies sampled in both areas suggesting that ants focus on reducing loads of alien fungi in the fungus gardens instead of avoiding specific fungi. However, fungal taxa composition differed between colonies sampled in the two areas and between the sampling periods. These differences are likely explained by the availability of plant substrates available for foraging over habitats and periods. Ordination analysis further supported that sampling period was the main attribute for community structuring but also revealed that additional factors may explain the structuring of fungal communities in colonies of A. cephalotes.

  15. The geographical patterns of symbiont diversity in the invasive legume Mimosa pudica can be explained by the competitiveness of its symbionts and by the host genotype.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melkonian, Rémy; Moulin, Lionel; Béna, Gilles; Tisseyre, Pierre; Chaintreuil, Clémence; Heulin, Karine; Rezkallah, Naïma; Klonowska, Agnieszka; Gonzalez, Sophie; Simon, Marcelo; Chen, Wen-Ming; James, Euan K; Laguerre, Gisèle

    2014-07-01

    Variations in the patterns of diversity of symbionts have been described worldwide on Mimosa pudica, a pan-tropical invasive species that interacts with both α and β-rhizobia. In this study, we investigated if symbiont competitiveness can explain these variations and the apparent prevalence of β- over α-rhizobia. We developed an indirect method to measure the proportion of nodulation against a GFP reference strain and tested its reproducibility and efficiency. We estimated the competitiveness of 54 strains belonging to four species of β-rhizobia and four of α-rhizobia, and the influence of the host genotype on their competitiveness. Our results were compared with biogeographical patterns of symbionts and host varieties. We found: (i) a strong strain effect on competitiveness largely explained by the rhizobial species, with Burkholderia phymatum being the most competitive species, followed by B. tuberum, whereas all other species shared similar and reduced levels of competitiveness; (ii) plant genotype can increase the competitiveness of Cupriavidus taiwanensis. The latter data support the likelihood of the strong adaptation of C. taiwanensis with the M. pudica var. unijuga and help explain its prevalence as a symbiont of this variety over Burkholderia species in some environments, most notably in Taiwan. © 2013 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Niche acclimatization in Red Sea corals is dependent on flexibility of host-symbiont association

    KAUST Repository

    Ziegler, Maren

    2015-08-06

    Knowledge of host-symbiont specificity and acclimatization capacity of corals is crucial for understanding implications of environmental change. Whilst some corals have been shown to associate with a number of symbionts that may comprise different physiologies, most corals associate with only one dominant Symbiodinium species at a time. Coral communities in the Red Sea thrive under large fluctuations of environmental conditions, but the degree and mechanisms of coral acclimatization are largely unexplored. Here we investigated the potential for niche acclimatization in 2 dominant corals from the central Red Sea, Pocillopora verrucosa and Porites lutea, in relation to the fidelity of the underlying coral-symbiont association. Repeated sampling over 2 seasons along a cross-shelf and depth gradient revealed a stable symbiont association in P. verrucosa and flexible association in P. lutea. A statistical biological-environmental matching routine revealed that the high plasticity of photophysiology and photopigments in the stable Symbiodinium microadriaticum (type A1) community in P. verrucosa were correlated with environmental influences along spatio-temporal dimensions. In contrast, photophysiology and pigments were less variable within each symbiont type from P. lutea indicating that niche acclimatization was rather regulated by a flexible association with a variable Symbiodinium community. Based on these data, we advocate an extended concept of phenotypic plasticity of the coral holobiont, in which the scleractinian host either associates with a specific Symbiodinium type with a broad physiological tolerance, or the host-symbiont pairing is more flexible to accommodate for different symbiont associations, each adapted to specific environmental settings.

  17. An invasive Mimosa in India does not adopt the symbionts of its native relatives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gehlot, Hukam Singh; Tak, Nisha; Kaushik, Muskan; Mitra, Shubhajit; Chen, Wen-Ming; Poweleit, Nicole; Panwar, Dheeren; Poonar, Neetu; Parihar, Rashmita; Tak, Alkesh; Sankhla, Indu Singh; Ojha, Archana; Rao, Satyawada Rama; Simon, Marcelo F; Reis Junior, Fabio Bueno Dos; Perigolo, Natalia; Tripathi, Anil K; Sprent, Janet I; Young, J Peter W; James, Euan K; Gyaneshwar, Prasad

    2013-07-01

    The large monophyletic genus Mimosa comprises approx. 500 species, most of which are native to the New World, with Central Brazil being the main centre of radiation. All Brazilian Mimosa spp. so far examined are nodulated by rhizobia in the betaproteobacterial genus Burkholderia. Approximately 10 Mya, transoceanic dispersal resulted in the Indian subcontinent hosting up to six endemic Mimosa spp. The nodulation ability and rhizobial symbionts of two of these, M. hamata and M. himalayana, both from north-west India, are here examined, and compared with those of M. pudica, an invasive species. Nodules were collected from several locations, and examined by light and electron microscopy. Rhizobia isolated from them were characterized in terms of their abilities to nodulate the three Mimosa hosts. The molecular phylogenetic relationships of the rhizobia were determined by analysis of 16S rRNA, nifH and nodA gene sequences. Both native Indian Mimosa spp. nodulated effectively in their respective rhizosphere soils. Based on 16S rRNA, nifH and nodA sequences, their symbionts were identified as belonging to the alphaproteobacterial genus Ensifer, and were closest to the 'Old World' Ensifer saheli, E. kostiensis and E. arboris. In contrast, the invasive M. pudica was predominantly nodulated by Betaproteobacteria in the genera Cupriavidus and Burkholderia. All rhizobial strains tested effectively nodulated their original hosts, but the symbionts of the native species could not nodulate M. pudica. The native Mimosa spp. in India are not nodulated by the Burkholderia symbionts of their South American relatives, but by a unique group of alpha-rhizobial microsymbionts that are closely related to the 'local' Old World Ensifer symbionts of other mimosoid legumes in north-west India. They appear not to share symbionts with the invasive M. pudica, symbionts of which are mostly beta-rhizobial.

  18. Hospitalized Patients and Fungal Infections

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... These types of infections are called healthcare-associated infections (HAIs). Hospital staff and healthcare providers do everything they can ... IV tube) can increase your risk for fungal infection. During your hospital stay you may need a central venous catheter, ...

  19. Fungal Entomopathogens in the Rhizosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Entomopathogenic fungi are found in a wide variety of fungal groups. The order Hypocreales contains the largest number of entomogenous fungi, including two of the most widely studied, Beauveria bassiana (Balsamo) Vuillemin (Hypocreales: Clavicipitaceae) and Metarhizium anisopliae (Metchnikoff) Sorok...

  20. Fungal genomics beyond Saccharomyces cerevisiae?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hofmann, Gerald; Mcintyre, Mhairi; Nielsen, Jens

    2003-01-01

    Fungi are used extensively in both fundamental research and industrial applications. Saccharomyces cerevisiae has been the model organism for fungal research for many years, particularly in functional genomics. However, considering the diversity within the fungal kingdom, it is obvious that the a......Fungi are used extensively in both fundamental research and industrial applications. Saccharomyces cerevisiae has been the model organism for fungal research for many years, particularly in functional genomics. However, considering the diversity within the fungal kingdom, it is obvious...... that the application of the existing methods of genome, transcriptome, proteome and metabolome analysis to other fungi has enormous potential, especially for the production of food and food ingredients. The developments in the past year demonstrate that we have only just started to exploit this potential....

  1. Co-niche construction between hosts and symbionts: ideas and evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borges, Renee M

    2017-07-01

    Symbiosis is a process that can generate evolutionary novelties and can extend the phenotypic niche space of organisms. Symbionts can act together with their hosts to co-construct host organs, within which symbionts are housed. Once established within hosts, symbionts can also influence various aspects of host phenotype, such as resource acquisition, protection from predation by acquisition of toxicity, as well as behaviour. Once symbiosis is established, its fidelity between generations must be ensured. Hosts evolve various mechanisms to screen unwanted symbionts and to facilitate faithful transmission of mutualistic partners between generations. Microbes are the most important symbionts that have influenced plant and animal phenotypes; multicellular organisms engage in developmental symbioses with microbes at many stages in ontogeny. The co-construction of niches may result in composite organisms that are physically nested within each other. While it has been advocated that these composite organisms need new evolutionary theories and perspectives to describe their properties and evolutionary trajectories, it appears that standard evolutionary theories are adequate to explore selection pressures on their composite or individual traits. Recent advances in our understanding of composite organisms open up many important questions regarding the stability and transmission of these units.

  2. Co-niche construction between hosts and symbionts: ideas and evidence

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    RENEE M. BORGES

    2017-07-01

    Symbiosis is a process that can generate evolutionary novelties and can extend the phenotypic niche space of organisms. Symbionts can act together with their hosts to co-construct host organs, within which symbionts are housed. Once established within hosts, symbionts can also influence various aspects of host phenotype, such as resource acquisition, protection from predation by acquisition of toxicity, as well as behaviour. Once symbiosis is established, its fidelity between generations must be ensured. Hosts evolve various mechanisms to screen unwanted symbionts and to facilitate faithful transmission of mutualistic partnersbetween generations. Microbes are the most important symbionts that have influenced plant and animal phenotypes; multicellular organisms engage in developmental symbioses with microbes at many stages in ontogeny. The co-construction of niches may result in composite organisms that are physically nested within each other. While it has been advocated that these composite organisms need new evolutionary theories and perspectives to describe their properties and evolutionary trajectories, it appears that standard evolutionary theories are adequate to explore selection pressures on their composite or individual traits. Recent advances in our understanding of composite organisms open up many important questions regarding the stability and transmission of these units.

  3. Bacterial symbionts: prospects for the sustainable production of invertebrate-derived pharmaceuticals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piel, J

    2006-01-01

    Invertebrate animals, such as sponges, tunicates and bryozoans, are among the most important sources of biomedically relevant natural products. However, as these animals generally contain only low quantities of the compounds, further pharmacological development is in most cases difficult. There is increasing evidence that many metabolites, in particular polyketides and nonribosomally synthesized peptides, are not produced by the animals themselves but by associated bacterial symbionts. This symbiont hypothesis currently attracts considerable interest, since it implicates that animal-independent production systems based on bacterial fermentation processes could be created. This review gives an overview about recent developments in the research on natural product symbiosis. Different techniques will be discussed that have been employed to pinpoint the actual producer. Since bacterial symbionts are highly fastidious and have been generally resistant to cultivation attempts, emphasis will be laid on culture-independent strategies, such as cell separation approaches and the cloning of biosynthetic genes. These strategies have provided insights into possible sources of several natural products, e.g. the bryostatins, pederin, the onnamides, swinholide A and theopalauamide. Finally, potential techniques for the generation of renewable supplies of symbiont-derived drug candidates will be discussed. Cultivation approaches and the heterologous expression of cloned biosynthesis genes from uncultured symbionts could in future provide access to several important marine drug candidates, including bryostatin 1, halichondrin or ET-743.

  4. Differential responses of the coral host and their algal symbiont to thermal stress.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William Leggat

    Full Text Available The success of any symbiosis under stress conditions is dependent upon the responses of both partners to that stress. The coral symbiosis is particularly susceptible to small increases of temperature above the long term summer maxima, which leads to the phenomenon known as coral bleaching, where the intracellular dinoflagellate symbionts are expelled. Here we for the first time used quantitative PCR to simultaneously examine the gene expression response of orthologs of the coral Acropora aspera and their dinoflagellate symbiont Symbiodinium. During an experimental bleaching event significant up-regulation of genes involved in stress response (HSP90 and HSP70 and carbon metabolism (glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase, α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase, glycogen synthase and glycogen phosphorylase from the coral host were observed. In contrast in the symbiont, HSP90 expression decreased, while HSP70 levels were increased on only one day, and only the α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase expression levels were found to increase. In addition the changes seen in expression patterns of the coral host were much larger, up to 10.5 fold, compared to the symbiont response, which in all cases was less than 2-fold. This targeted study of the expression of key metabolic and stress genes demonstrates that the response of the coral and their symbiont vary significantly, also a response in the host transcriptome was observed prior to what has previously been thought to be the temperatures at which thermal stress events occur.

  5. Cyanobacterial diversity and a new acaryochloris-like symbiont from Bahamian sea-squirts.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susanna López-Legentil

    Full Text Available Symbiotic interactions between ascidians (sea-squirts and microbes are poorly understood. Here we characterized the cyanobacteria in the tissues of 8 distinct didemnid taxa from shallow-water marine habitats in the Bahamas Islands by sequencing a fragment of the cyanobacterial 16S rRNA gene and the entire 16S-23S rRNA internal transcribed spacer region (ITS and by examining symbiont morphology with transmission electron (TEM and confocal microscopy (CM. As described previously for other species, Trididemnum spp. mostly contained symbionts associated with the Prochloron-Synechocystis group. However, sequence analysis of the symbionts in Lissoclinum revealed two unique clades. The first contained a novel cyanobacterial clade, while the second clade was closely associated with Acaryochloris marina. CM revealed the presence of chlorophyll d (chl d and phycobiliproteins (PBPs within these symbiont cells, as is characteristic of Acaryochloris species. The presence of symbionts was also observed by TEM inside the tunic of both the adult and larvae of L. fragile, indicating vertical transmission to progeny. Based on molecular phylogenetic and microscopic analyses, Candidatus Acaryochloris bahamiensis nov. sp. is proposed for this symbiotic cyanobacterium. Our results support the hypothesis that photosymbiont communities in ascidians are structured by host phylogeny, but in some cases, also by sampling location.

  6. Recognition- and defense-related gene expression at 3 resynthesis stages in lichen symbionts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Athukorala, Sarangi N P; Piercey-Normore, Michele D

    2015-01-01

    Recognition and defense responses are early events in plant-pathogen interactions and between lichen symbionts. The effect of elicitors on responses between lichen symbionts is not well understood. The objective of this study was to compare the difference in recognition- and defense-related gene expression as a result of culture extracts (containing secreted water-soluble elicitors) from compatible and incompatible interactions at each of 3 resynthesis stages in the symbionts of Cladonia rangiferina. This study investigated gene expression by quantitative PCR in cultures of C. rangiferina and its algal partner, Asterochloris glomerata/irregularis, after incubation with liquid extracts from cultures of compatible and incompatible interactions at 3 early resynthesis stages. Recognition-related genes were significantly upregulated only after physical contact, demonstrating symbiont recognition in later resynthesis stages than expected. One of 3 defense-related genes, chit, showed significant downregulation in early resynthesis stages and upregulation in the third resynthesis stage, demonstrating a need for the absence of chitinase early in thallus formation and a need for its presence in later stages as an algal defense reaction. This study revealed that recognition- and defense-related genes are triggered by components in culture extracts at 3 stages of resynthesis, and some defense-related genes may be induced throughout thallus growth. The parasitic nature of the interaction shows parallels between lichen symbionts and plant pathogenic systems.

  7. Parallel metatranscriptome analyses of host and symbiont gene expression in the gut of the termite Reticulitermes flavipes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhou Xuguo

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Termite lignocellulose digestion is achieved through a collaboration of host plus prokaryotic and eukaryotic symbionts. In the present work, we took a combined host and symbiont metatranscriptomic approach for investigating the digestive contributions of host and symbiont in the lower termite Reticulitermes flavipes. Our approach consisted of parallel high-throughput sequencing from (i a host gut cDNA library and (ii a hindgut symbiont cDNA library. Subsequently, we undertook functional analyses of newly identified phenoloxidases with potential importance as pretreatment enzymes in industrial lignocellulose processing. Results Over 10,000 expressed sequence tags (ESTs were sequenced from the 2 libraries that aligned into 6,555 putative transcripts, including 171 putative lignocellulase genes. Sequence analyses provided insights in two areas. First, a non-overlapping complement of host and symbiont (prokaryotic plus protist glycohydrolase gene families known to participate in cellulose, hemicellulose, alpha carbohydrate, and chitin degradation were identified. Of these, cellulases are contributed by host plus symbiont genomes, whereas hemicellulases are contributed exclusively by symbiont genomes. Second, a diverse complement of previously unknown genes that encode proteins with homology to lignase, antioxidant, and detoxification enzymes were identified exclusively from the host library (laccase, catalase, peroxidase, superoxide dismutase, carboxylesterase, cytochrome P450. Subsequently, functional analyses of phenoloxidase activity provided results that were strongly consistent with patterns of laccase gene expression. In particular, phenoloxidase activity and laccase gene expression are mostly restricted to symbiont-free foregut plus salivary gland tissues, and phenoloxidase activity is inducible by lignin feeding. Conclusion To our knowledge, this is the first time that a dual host-symbiont transcriptome sequencing effort

  8. Fungal microbiota dysbiosis in IBD

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sokol, Harry; Leducq, Valentin; Aschard, Hugues; Pham, Hang-Phuong; Jegou, Sarah; Landman, Cecilia; Cohen, David; Liguori, Giuseppina; Bourrier, Anne; Nion-Larmurier, Isabelle; Cosnes, Jacques; Seksik, Philippe; Langella, Philippe; Skurnik, David; Richard, Mathias L; Beaugerie, Laurent

    2017-01-01

    Objective The bacterial intestinal microbiota plays major roles in human physiology and IBDs. Although some data suggest a role of the fungal microbiota in IBD pathogenesis, the available data are scarce. The aim of our study was to characterise the faecal fungal microbiota in patients with IBD. Design Bacterial and fungal composition of the faecal microbiota of 235 patients with IBD and 38 healthy subjects (HS) was determined using 16S and ITS2 sequencing, respectively. The obtained sequences were analysed using the Qiime pipeline to assess composition and diversity. Bacterial and fungal taxa associated with clinical parameters were identified using multivariate association with linear models. Correlation between bacterial and fungal microbiota was investigated using Spearman's test and distance correlation. Results We observed that fungal microbiota is skewed in IBD, with an increased Basidiomycota/Ascomycota ratio, a decreased proportion of Saccharomyces cerevisiae and an increased proportion of Candida albicans compared with HS. We also identified disease-specific alterations in diversity, indicating that a Crohn's disease-specific gut environment may favour fungi at the expense of bacteria. The concomitant analysis of bacterial and fungal microbiota showed a dense and homogenous correlation network in HS but a dramatically unbalanced network in IBD, suggesting the existence of disease-specific inter-kingdom alterations. Conclusions Besides bacterial dysbiosis, our study identifies a distinct fungal microbiota dysbiosis in IBD characterised by alterations in biodiversity and composition. Moreover, we unravel here disease-specific inter-kingdom network alterations in IBD, suggesting that, beyond bacteria, fungi might also play a role in IBD pathogenesis. PMID:26843508

  9. Fungal specificity bottlenecks during orchid germination and development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bidartondo, Martin I; Read, David J

    2008-08-01

    Fungus-subsidized growth through the seedling stage is the most critical feature of the life history for the thousands of mycorrhizal plant species that propagate by means of 'dust seeds.' We investigated the extent of specificity towards fungi shown by orchids in the genera Cephalanthera and Epipactis at three stages of their life cycle: (i) initiation of germination, (ii) during seedling development, and (iii) in the mature photosynthetic plant. It is known that in the mature phase, plants of these genera can be mycorrhizal with a number of fungi that are simultaneously ectomycorrhizal with the roots of neighbouring forest trees. The extent to which earlier developmental stages use the same or a distinctive suite of fungi was unclear. To address this question, a total of 1500 packets containing orchid seeds were buried for up to 3 years in diverse European forest sites which either supported or lacked populations of helleborine orchids. After harvest, the fungi associated with the three developmental stages, and with tree roots, were identified via cultivation-independent molecular methods. While our results show that most fungal symbionts are ectomycorrhizal, differences were observed between orchids in the representation of fungi at the three life stages. In Cephalanthera damasonium and C. longifolia, the fungi detected in seedlings were only a subset of the wider range seen in germinating seeds and mature plants. In Epipactis atrorubens, the fungi detected were similar at all three life stages, but different fungal lineages produced a difference in seedling germination performance. Our results demonstrate that there can be a narrow checkpoint for mycorrhizal range during seedling growth relative to the more promiscuous germination and mature stages of these plants' life cycle.

  10. Initial Symbiont Contact Orchestrates Host Organ-wide Transcriptional Changes that Prime Tissue Colonization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kremer, Natacha; Philipp, Eva E.R.; Carpentier, Marie-Christine; Brennan, Caitlin A.; Kraemer, Lars; Altura, Melissa A.; Augustin, René; Häsler, Robert; Heath-Heckman, Elizabeth A. C.; Peyer, Suzanne M.; Schwartzman, Julia; Rader, Bethany; Ruby, Edward G.; Rosenstiel, Philip; McFall-Ngai, Margaret J.

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Upon transit to colonization sites, bacteria often experience critical priming that prepares them for subsequent, specific interactions with the host; however, the underlying mechanisms are poorly described. During initiation of the symbiosis between the bacterium Vibrio fischeri and its squid host, which can be observed directly and in real time, ~5 V. fischeri cells aggregate along the mucociliary membranes of a superficial epithelium prior to entering host tissues. Here we show that these few early host-associated symbionts specifically induce robust changes in host gene expression that are critical to subsequent colonization steps. This exquisitely sensitive response to its specific symbiotic partner includes the upregulation of a host endochitinase, whose activity hydrolyzes polymeric chitin in the mucus into chitobiose, thereby priming the symbiont and also producing a chemoattractant gradient that promotes V. fischeri migration into host tissues. Thus, the host responds transcriptionally upon initial symbiont contact, which facilitates subsequent colonization. PMID:23954157

  11. Gut symbiont enhances insecticide resistance in a significant pest, the oriental fruit fly Bactrocera dorsalis (Hendel).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Daifeng; Guo, Zijun; Riegler, Markus; Xi, Zhiyong; Liang, Guangwen; Xu, Yijuan

    2017-02-01

    Symbiotic bacteria affect insect physiology and ecology. They may also mediate insecticide resistance within their hosts and thereby impact pest and vector control practices. Here, we document a novel mechanism of insecticide resistance in which a gut symbiont of the tephritid pest fruit fly Bactrocera dorsalis enhances resistance to the organophosphate insecticide trichlorphon. We demonstrated that the gut symbiont Citrobacter sp. (CF-BD) plays a key role in the degradation of trichlorphon. Based on a comparative genomics analysis with other Citrobacter species, phosphatase hydrolase genes were identified in CF-BD. These CF-BD genes had higher expression when trichlorphon was present. Bactrocera dorsalis inoculated with isolated CF-BD obtained higher trichlorphon resistance, while antibiotic-treated flies were less resistant confirming the key role of CF-BD in insecticide resistance. Our findings suggest that symbiont-mediated insecticide resistance can readily develop in B. dorsalis and may represent a more widely relevant insecticide resistance mechanism than previously recognized.

  12. Mixed infections may promote diversification of mutualistic symbionts: why are there ineffective rhizobia?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friesen, M L; Mathias, A

    2010-02-01

    While strategy variation is a key feature of symbiotic mutualisms, little work focuses on the origin of this diversity. Rhizobia strategies range from mutualistic nitrogen fixers to parasitic nonfixers that hoard plant resources to increase their own survival in soil. Host plants reward beneficial rhizobia with higher nodule growth rates, generating a trade-off between reproduction in nodules and subsequent survival in soil. However, hosts might not discriminate between strains in mixed infections, allowing nonfixing strains to escape sanctions. We construct an adaptive dynamics model of symbiotic nitrogen-fixation and find general situations where symbionts undergo adaptive diversification, but in most situations complete nonfixers do not evolve. Social conflict in mixed infections when symbionts face a survival-reproduction trade-off can drive the origin of some coexisting symbiont strategies, where less mutualistic strains exploit benefits generated by better mutualists.

  13. Preferential host switching and codivergence shaped radiation of bark beetle symbionts, nematodes of Micoletzkya (Nematoda: Diplogastridae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Susoy, V; Herrmann, M

    2014-05-01

    Host-symbiont systems are of particular interest to evolutionary biology because they allow testable inferences of diversification processes while also providing both a historical basis and an ecological context for studies of adaptation. Our investigations of bark beetle symbionts, predatory nematodes of the genus Micoletzkya, have revealed remarkable diversity of the group along with a high level of host specificity. Cophylogenetic analyses suggest that evolution of the nematodes was largely influenced by the evolutionary history of beetles. The diversification of the symbionts, however, could not be attributed to parallel divergence alone; our results indicate that adaptive radiation of the nematodes was shaped by preferential host shifts among closely related beetles along with codivergence. Whereas ecological and geographic isolation have played a major role in the diversification of Micoletzkya at shallow phylogenetic depths, adaptations towards related hosts have played a role in shaping cophylogenetic structure at a larger evolutionary scale.

  14. Cophylogenetics and biogeography reveal a coevolved relationship between sloths and their symbiont algae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fountain, Emily D; Pauli, Jonathan N; Mendoza, Jorge E; Carlson, Jenna; Peery, M Zachariah

    2017-05-01

    Specialized species, like arboreal folivores, often develop beneficial relationships with symbionts to exploit ecologically constrained lifestyles. Although coevolution can drive speciation by specialization of a symbiont to a host, a symbiotic relationship is not indicative of coevolution between host and symbiont. We tested for coevolved relationships between highly specialized two- and three-toed sloths (Choloepus spp. and Bradypus spp., respectively) and their symbiotic algae using cophylogenies and phylogeography. Our phylogeographic analysis showed a biogeographic pattern for the sloth distribution that was not found in the algal phylogeny. We found support for congruence between the sloth and algae phylogenies, implying cospeciation, only in the Bradypus lineage. Algae host-switching occurred from Bradypus spp. to Choloepus spp. Our results support a previously hypothesized symbiotic relationship between sloths and the algae in their fur and indicate that coevolution may have played a role in algae diversification. More broadly, convergent evolution may facilitate host switching between deeply diverged host lineages.

  15. Genomic deletions disrupt nitrogen metabolism pathways of a cyanobacterial diatom symbiont

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilton, Jason A.; Foster, Rachel A.; James Tripp, H.; Carter, Brandon J.; Zehr, Jonathan P.; Villareal, Tracy A.

    2013-01-01

    Diatoms with symbiotic N2-fixing cyanobacteria are often abundant in the oligotrophic open ocean gyres. The most abundant cyanobacterial symbionts form heterocysts (specialized cells for N2 fixation) and provide nitrogen (N) to their hosts, but their morphology, cellular locations and abundances differ depending on the host. Here we show that the location of the symbiont and its dependency on the host are linked to the evolution of the symbiont genome. The genome of Richelia (found inside the siliceous frustule of Hemiaulus) is reduced and lacks ammonium transporters, nitrate/nitrite reductases and glutamine:2-oxoglutarate aminotransferase. In contrast, the genome of the closely related Calothrix (found outside the frustule of Chaetoceros) is more similar to those of free-living heterocyst-forming cyanobacteria. The genome of Richelia is an example of metabolic streamlining that has implications for the evolution of N2-fixing symbiosis and potentially for manipulating plant–cyanobacterial interactions. PMID:23612308

  16. Plant-mediated interspecific horizontal transmission of an intracellular symbiont in insects

    KAUST Repository

    Gonella, Elena

    2015-11-13

    Intracellular reproductive manipulators, such as Candidatus Cardinium and Wolbachia are vertically transmitted to progeny but rarely show co-speciation with the host. In sap-feeding insects, plant tissues have been proposed as alternative horizontal routes of interspecific transmission, but experimental evidence is limited. Here we report results from experiments that show that Cardinium is horizontally transmitted between different phloem sap-feeding insect species through plants. Quantitative PCR and in situ hybridization experiments indicated that the leafhopper Scaphoideus titanus releases Cardinium from its salivary glands during feeding on both artificial media and grapevine leaves. Successional time-course feeding experiments with S. titanus initially fed sugar solutions or small areas of grapevine leaves followed by feeding by the phytoplasma vector Macrosteles quadripunctulatus or the grapevine feeder Empoasca vitis revealed that the symbionts were transmitted to both species. Explaining interspecific horizontal transmission through plants improves our understanding of how symbionts spread, their lifestyle and the symbiont-host intermixed evolutionary pattern.

  17. Investigating the causes and consequences of symbiont shuffling in a multi-partner reef coral symbiosis under environmental change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunning, R; Silverstein, R N; Baker, A C

    2015-06-22

    Dynamic symbioses may critically mediate impacts of climate change on diverse organisms, with repercussions for ecosystem persistence in some cases. On coral reefs, increases in heat-tolerant symbionts after thermal bleaching can reduce coral susceptibility to future stress. However, the relevance of this adaptive response is equivocal owing to conflicting reports of symbiont stability and change. We help reconcile this conflict by showing that change in symbiont community composition (symbiont shuffling) in Orbicella faveolata depends on the disturbance severity and recovery environment. The proportion of heat-tolerant symbionts dramatically increased following severe experimental bleaching, especially in a warmer recovery environment, but tended to decrease if bleaching was less severe. These patterns can be explained by variation in symbiont performance in the changing microenvironments created by differentially bleached host tissues. Furthermore, higher proportions of heat-tolerant symbionts linearly increased bleaching resistance but reduced photochemical efficiency, suggesting that any change in community structure oppositely impacts performance and stress tolerance. Therefore, even minor symbiont shuffling can adaptively benefit corals, although fitness effects of resulting trade-offs are difficult to predict. This work helps elucidate causes and consequences of dynamism in symbiosis, which is critical to predicting responses of multi-partner symbioses such as O. faveolata to environmental change. © 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  18. Fickle or Faithful: The Roles of Host and Environmental Context in Determining Symbiont Composition in Two Bathymodioline Mussels.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sven R Laming

    Full Text Available The Mediterranean Sea and adjoining East Atlantic Ocean host a diverse array of small-sized mussels that predominantly live on sunken, decomposing organic remains. At least two of these, Idas modiolaeformis and Idas simpsoni, are known to engage in gill-associated symbioses; however, the composition, diversity and variability of these symbioses with changing habitat and location is poorly defined. The current study presents bacterial symbiont assemblage data, derived from 454 pyrosequencing carried out on replicate specimens of these two host species, collected across seven sample sites found in three oceanographic regions in the Mediterranean and East Atlantic. The presence of several bacterial OTUs in both the Mediterranean Sea and eastern Atlantic suggests that similar symbiont candidates occur on both sides of the Strait of Gibraltar. The results reveal markedly different symbiotic modes in the two species. Idas modiolaeformis displays high symbiont diversity and flexibility, with strong variation in symbiont composition from the East Mediterranean to the East Atlantic. Idas simpsoni displays low symbiont diversity but high symbiont fidelity, with a single dominant OTU occurring in all specimens analysed. These differences are argued to be a function of the host species, where subtle differences in host evolution, life-history and behaviour could partially explain the observed patterns. The variability in symbiont compositions, particularly in Idas modiolaeformis, is thought to be a function of the nature, context and location of the habitat from which symbiont candidates are sourced.

  19. Bacteriome-localized intracellular symbionts in pollen-feeding beetles of the genus Dasytes (Coleoptera, Dasytidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin Weiss

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Several insect taxa are associated with intracellular symbionts that provision limiting nutrients to their hosts. Such tightly integrated symbioses are especially common in insects feeding on nutritionally challenging diets like phloem sap or vertebrate blood, but also occur in seed-eating and omnivorous taxa. Here, we characterize an intracellular symbiosis in pollen-feeding beetles of the genus Dasytes (Coleoptera, Dasytidae. High-throughput tag-encoded 16S amplicon pyrosequencing of adult D. plumbeus and D. virens revealed a single gamma-proteobacterial symbiont that amounts to 52.4-98.7% of the adult beetles’ entire microbial community. Almost complete 16S rRNA sequences phylogenetically placed the symbiont into a clade comprising Buchnera and other insect endosymbionts, but sequence similarities to these closest relatives were surprisingly low (83.4 to 87.4%. Using histological examination, three-dimensional reconstructions, and fluorescence in situ hybridization, we localized the symbionts in three mulberry-shaped bacteriomes that are associated with the mid- to hind-gut transition in adult male and female beetles. Given the specialized pollen-feeding habits of the adults that contrasts with the larvae’s carnivorous lifestyle, the symbionts may provision limiting essential amino acids or vitamins as in other intracellular symbioses, or they might produce digestive enzymes that break up the fastidious pollen walls and thereby contribute to the host’s nutrition. In either case, the presence of gamma-proteobacterial symbionts in pollen-feeding beetles indicates that intracellular mutualists are more widely distributed across insects with diverse feeding habits than previously recognized.

  20. Aphid thermal tolerance is governed by a point mutation in bacterial symbionts.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helen E Dunbar

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available Symbiosis is a ubiquitous phenomenon generating biological complexity, affecting adaptation, and expanding ecological capabilities. However, symbionts, which can be subject to genetic limitations such as clonality and genomic degradation, also impose constraints on hosts. A model of obligate symbiosis is that between aphids and the bacterium Buchnera aphidicola, which supplies essential nutrients. We report a mutation in Buchnera of the aphid Acyrthosiphon pisum that recurs in laboratory lines and occurs in field populations. This single nucleotide deletion affects a homopolymeric run within the heat-shock transcriptional promoter for ibpA, encoding a small heat-shock protein. This Buchnera mutation virtually eliminates the transcriptional response of ibpA to heat stress and lowers its expression even at cool or moderate temperatures. Furthermore, this symbiont mutation dramatically affects host fitness in a manner dependent on thermal environment. Following a short heat exposure as juveniles, aphids bearing short-allele symbionts produced few or no progeny and contained almost no Buchnera, in contrast to aphids bearing symbionts without the deletion. Conversely, under constant cool conditions, aphids containing symbionts with the short allele reproduced earlier and maintained higher reproductive rates. The short allele has appreciable frequencies in field populations (up to 20%, further supporting the view that lowering of ibpA expression improves host fitness under some conditions. This recurring Buchnera mutation governs thermal tolerance of aphid hosts. Other cases in which symbiont microevolution has a major effect on host ecological tolerance are likely to be widespread because of the high mutation rates of symbiotic bacteria and their crucial roles in host metabolism and development.

  1. Biogeography and molecular diversity of coral symbionts in the genus Symbiodinium around the Arabian Peninsula

    KAUST Repository

    Ziegler, Maren

    2017-01-02

    Aim: Coral reefs rely on the symbiosis between scleractinian corals and intracellular, photosynthetic dinoflagellates of the genus Symbiodinium making the assessment of symbiont diversity critical to our understanding of ecological resilience of these ecosystems. This study characterizes Symbiodinium diversity around the Arabian Peninsula, which contains some of the most thermally diverse and understudied reefs on Earth. Location: Shallow water coral reefs throughout the Red Sea (RS), Sea of Oman (SO), and Persian/Arabian Gulf (PAG). Methods: Next-generation sequencing of the ITS2 marker gene was used to assess Symbiodinium community composition and diversity comprising 892 samples from 46 hard and soft coral genera. Results: Corals were associated with a large diversity of Symbiodinium, which usually consisted of one or two prevalent symbiont types and many types at low abundance. Symbiodinium communities were strongly structured according to geographical region and to a lesser extent by coral host identity. Overall symbiont communities were composed primarily of species from clade A and C in the RS, clade A, C, and D in the SO, and clade C and D in the PAG, representing a gradual shift from C- to D-dominated coral hosts. The analysis of symbiont diversity in an Operational Taxonomic Unit (OTU)-based framework allowed the identification of differences in symbiont taxon richness over geographical regions and host genera. Main conclusions: Our study represents a comprehensive overview over biogeography and molecular diversity of Symbiodinium in the Arabian Seas, where coral reefs thrive in one of the most extreme environmental settings on the planet. As such our data will serve as a baseline for further exploration into the effects of environmental change on host-symbiont pairings and the identification and ecological significance of Symbiodinium types from regions already experiencing \\'Future Ocean\\' conditions.

  2. Differential responses of the whitefly Bemisia tabaci symbionts to unfavorable low and high temperatures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shan, Hong-Wei; Lu, Yu-Heng; Bing, Xiao-Li; Liu, Shu-Sheng; Liu, Yin-Quan

    2014-10-01

    The whitefly Bemisia tabaci complex contains many cryptic species, of which the Middle East-Asia Minor 1 (MEAM1) and Mediterranean (MED) are notorious invasive pests. In our field-collected whitefly samples, MEAM1 harbors an obligate primary symbiont "Candidatus Portiera aleyrodidarum" and two secondary symbionts, "Candidatus Hamiltonella defensa" and Rickettsia sp., whereas MED has only "Ca. Portiera aleyrodidarum" and "Ca. Hamiltonella defensa." Both "Ca. Portiera aleyrodidarum" and "Ca. Hamiltonella defensa" are intracellular endosymbionts residing in the bacteriomes, whereas Rickettsia sp. has a scattered distribution throughout the host body cavity. We examined responses of these symbionts to adverse temperatures as well as survival of the host insects. After cold treatment at 5 or 10 °C or heat treatment at 35 or 40 °C for 24 h, respectively, the infection rates of all symbionts were not significantly decreased based on diagnosis PCR. However, quantitative PCR assays indicated significant reduction of "Ca. Hamiltonella defensa" at 40 °C, and the reduction became greater as the duration increased. Compared with "Ca. Hamiltonella defensa," "Ca. Portiera aleyrodidarum" was initially less affected in the first day but then showed more rapid reduction at days 3-5. The density of Rickettsia sp. fluctuated but was not reduced significantly at 40 °C. Meanwhile, the mortality rates of the host whiteflies elevated rapidly as the duration of exposure to heat treatment increased. The differential responses of various symbionts to adverse temperatures imply complex interactions among the symbionts inside the same host insect and highlight the importance of taking the whole bacterial community into account in studies of symbioses.

  3. What can symbiont titres tell us about co-evolution of Wolbachia and their host?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Correa, C Carolina; Ballard, J William O

    2014-05-01

    There is a long-standing prediction that associations with vertically transmitted symbionts evolve towards maximisation of host reproductive success, eventually leading to mutualist symbiosis and coadaptation. Under this scenario, the regulation of symbiont titres in host tissues would be expected to be greater when partners have coevolved for a long time than when they have recently met. Wolbachia pipientis, a common vertically transmitted symbiont of invertebrates, often has the capacity to spread through the host population without being beneficial to the hosts, by means of reducing the hatch rate in crosses between uninfected females and infected males. This manipulation, namely cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI), may exert strong selection on the accuracy of infection transmission from mother to offspring, and therefore, on regulation of symbiont titres in the ova. Here, we examined the symbiont density dynamics in gonads of Drosophila simulans infected with the wMa strain of Wolbachia, known to cause mild CI and likely to be the oldest Wolbachia infection known to this fly species. Further, we compared these results with those obtained for the more recent association between D. simulans and the potent CI-inducer wHa (Correa and Ballard, 2012). We aimed to determine if the regulation of Wolbachia density in fly gonads is greater in the older association, as would be predicted solely by gradual coadaptation, or if the selection exerted by CI on reproductive fitness could also play a role, therefore showing tighter regulation on flies with the stronger CI-inducing strain. We observed that Wolbachia density in gonads of wMa infected flies changed with laboratory adaptation and were disturbed by environmental challenges, which contrasted with the stability of ovarian wHa density to the same treatments. Our observations are in line with the prediction that selection on reproductive fitness influences the evolution symbiont density regulation in Drosophila, and may

  4. Saccharide-mediated antagonistic effects of bark beetle fungal associates on larvae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Bo; Lu, Min; Cheng, Chihang; Salcedo, Christian; Sun, Jianghua

    2013-02-23

    Bark beetles are among the most destructive of pine forest pests and they form close symbiotic relationships with ophiostomatoid fungi. Although some fungi are considered to be mutualistic symbionts of bark beetles with respect to the supply of nutrients, detrimental effects of fungal symbionts on larval growth have also been frequently reported. The mechanisms of such antagonistic effects are hypothesized to be a decrease in nutritional resources caused by competition for saccharides by the fungi. Here, we provide experimental evidence that three beetle-associated fungi modify the nutritional content of an artificial phloem diet, leading to a detrimental effect on the growth of Dendroctonus valens larvae. When larvae were fed a diet of pine phloem in agar medium colonized with any of these fungi, feeding activity was not affected but weight significantly decreased. Additional analysis showed that fungi depleted the fructose and glucose concentrations in the phloem media. Furthermore, these detrimental effects were neutralized by supplementing the media with fructose or glucose, suggesting that fungi may affect larval growth by modifying diet saccharide contents. These data indicate that fungus-induced nutritional changes in bark beetle diet can affect larval growth, and that the mechanism involves fungus-induced saccharide depletion from the larval diet.

  5. Serious fungal infections in Ecuador.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zurita, J; Denning, D W; Paz-Y-Miño, A; Solís, M B; Arias, L M

    2017-06-01

    There is a dearth of data from Ecuador on the burden of life-threatening fungal disease entities; therefore, we estimated the burden of serious fungal infections in Ecuador based on the populations at risk and available epidemiological databases and publications. A full literature search was done to identify all epidemiology papers reporting fungal infection rates. WHO, ONU-AIDS, Index Mundi, Global Asthma Report, Globocan, and national data [Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Censos (INEC), Ministerio de Salud Pública (MSP), Sociedad de Lucha Contra el Cáncer (SOLCA), Instituto Nacional de Donación y Trasplante de Órganos, Tejidos y Células (INDOT)] were reviewed. When no data existed, risk populations were used to estimate frequencies of fungal infections, using previously described methodology by LIFE. Ecuador has a variety of climates from the cold of the Andes through temperate to humid hot weather at the coast and in the Amazon basin. Ecuador has a population of 15,223,680 people and an average life expectancy of 76 years. The median estimate of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) population at risk for fungal disease (<200 CD4 cell counts) is ∼10,000, with a rate of 11.1% (1100) of histoplasma, 7% (700) of cryptococcal meningitis, and 11% (1070) of Pneumocystis pneumonia. The burden of candidemia is 1037. Recurrent Candida vaginitis (≥4 episodes per year) affects 307,593 women aged 15-50 years. Chronic pulmonary aspergillosis probably affects ∼476 patients following tuberculosis (TB). Invasive aspergillosis is estimated to affect 748 patients (∼5.5/100,000). In addition, allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis (ABPA) in asthma and severe asthma with fungal sensitization (SAFS) were estimated to affect 26,642 and 45,013 people, respectively. Our estimates indicate that 433,856 (3%) of the population in Ecuador is affected by serious fungal infection.

  6. Multiple approaches for the detection and characterization of viral and plasmid symbionts from a collection of marine fungi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nerva, L; Ciuffo, M; Vallino, M; Margaria, P; Varese, G C; Gnavi, G; Turina, M

    2016-07-02

    The number of reported mycoviruses is increasing exponentially due to the current ability to detect mycoviruses using next-generation sequencing (NGS) approaches, with a large number of viral genomes built in-silico using data from fungal transcriptome projects. We decided to screen a collection of fungi originating from a specific marine environment (associated with the seagrass Posidonia oceanica) for the presence of mycoviruses: our findings reveal a wealth of diversity among these symbionts and this complexity will require further studies to address their specific role in this ecological niche. In specific, we identified twelve new virus species belonging to nine distinct lineages: they are members of megabirnavirus, totivirus, chrysovirus, partitivirus and five still undefined clades. We showed evidence of an endogenized virus ORF, and evidence of accumulation of dsRNA from metaviridae retroviral elements. We applied different techniques for detecting the presence of mycoviruses including (i) dsRNA extraction and cDNA cloning, (ii) small and total RNA sequencing through NGS techniques, (iii) rolling circle amplification (RCA) and total DNA extraction analyses, (iv) virus purifications and electron microscopy. We tried also to critically evaluate the intrinsic value and limitations of each of these techniques. Based on the samples we could compare directly, RNAseq analysis is superior to sRNA for de novo assembly of mycoviruses. To our knowledge this is the first report on the virome of fungi isolated from marine environment. The GenBank/eMBL/DDBJ accession numbers of the sequences reported in this paper are: KT601099-KT601110; KT601114-KT601120; KT592305; KT950836-KT950841.

  7. Earthworms and their Nephridial Symbionts: Co-diversification and Maintenance of the Symbiosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Marie Braad; Holmstrup, Martin; Davidson, Seana K.

    Earthworms harbor in their nephridia (excretory organs) symbiotic bacteria which densely colonize a specific part of the nephridia, called the ampulla [1]. The symbiosis is species-specific and the symbionts form their own monophyletic genus Verminephrobacter (β-proteobacteria) [2...... showed no significant differences in growth rate and fecundity between symbiotic and aposymbiotic worms. Thus the symbionts do not appear to have an effect on worm fitness, under growth conditions tested. The underlying functional and maintaining mechanisms of this symbiosis remain a conundrum. [1] Knop...

  8. Advances in Marine Microbial Symbionts in the China Sea and Related Pharmaceutical Metabolites

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhiyong Li

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Marine animals and plants such as sponges, sea squirts, corals, worms and algae host diverse and abundant symbiotic microorganisms. Marine microbial symbionts are possible the true producers or take part in the biosynthesis of some bioactive marine natural products isolated from the marine organism hosts. Investigation of the pharmaceutical metabolites may reveal the biosynthesis mechanisms of related natural products and solve the current problem of supply limitation in marine drug development. This paper reviews the advances in diversity revelation, biological activity and related pharmaceutical metabolites, and functional genes of marine microbial symbionts from the China Sea.

  9. Nitrogen transfer in the interface between the symbionts in pea root nodules

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rosendahl, L.; Mouritzen, P.; Rudbeck, A.

    2001-01-01

    Transport mechanisms for transfer of nitrogen from the bacteroid side across the symbiosome membrane of pea (Pisum sativum L.) root nodules were identified by the use of energised bacteroid side-out symbiosome membrane vesicles. Such membrane vesicles were used to study a mechanism with high...... as ammonium. In the symbiosome subfraction, which represents the interface between the symbionts, specific aspartate aminotransferase activity was more than four times as high as in the bacteroid cytosol. This finding supports a hypothesis that transamination cycles operating between the symbionts may...

  10. Global diversity of marine isopods (except Asellota and crustacean symbionts.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gary C B Poore

    Full Text Available The crustacean order Isopoda (excluding Asellota, crustacean symbionts and freshwater taxa comprise 3154 described marine species in 379 genera in 37 families according to the WoRMS catalogue. The history of taxonomic discovery over the last two centuries is reviewed. Although a well defined order with the Peracarida, their relationship to other orders is not yet resolved but systematics of the major subordinal taxa is relatively well understood. Isopods range in size from less than 1 mm to Bathynomus giganteus at 365 mm long. They inhabit all marine habitats down to 7280 m depth but with few doubtful exceptions species have restricted biogeographic and bathymetric ranges. Four feeding categories are recognised as much on the basis of anecdotal evidence as hard data: detritus feeders and browsers, carnivores, parasites, and filter feeders. Notable among these are the Cymothooidea that range from predators and scavengers to external blood-sucking micropredators and parasites. Isopods brood 10-1600 eggs depending on individual species. Strong sexual dimorphism is characteristic of several families, notably in Gnathiidae where sessile males live with a harem of females while juvenile praniza stages are ectoparasites of fish. Protandry is known in Cymothoidae and protogyny in Anthuroidea. Some Paranthuridae are neotenous. About half of all coastal, shelf and upper bathyal species have been recorded in the MEOW temperate realms, 40% in tropical regions and the remainder in polar seas. The greatest concentration of temperate species is in Australasia; more have been recorded from temperate North Pacific than the North Atlantic. Of tropical regions, the Central Indo-Pacific is home to more species any other region. Isopods are decidedly asymmetrical latitudinally with 1.35 times as many species in temperate Southern Hemisphere than the temperate North Atlantic and northern Pacific, and almost four times as many Antarctic as Arctic species. More species

  11. Global diversity of marine isopods (except Asellota and crustacean symbionts).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poore, Gary C B; Bruce, Niel L

    2012-01-01

    The crustacean order Isopoda (excluding Asellota, crustacean symbionts and freshwater taxa) comprise 3154 described marine species in 379 genera in 37 families according to the WoRMS catalogue. The history of taxonomic discovery over the last two centuries is reviewed. Although a well defined order with the Peracarida, their relationship to other orders is not yet resolved but systematics of the major subordinal taxa is relatively well understood. Isopods range in size from less than 1 mm to Bathynomus giganteus at 365 mm long. They inhabit all marine habitats down to 7280 m depth but with few doubtful exceptions species have restricted biogeographic and bathymetric ranges. Four feeding categories are recognised as much on the basis of anecdotal evidence as hard data: detritus feeders and browsers, carnivores, parasites, and filter feeders. Notable among these are the Cymothooidea that range from predators and scavengers to external blood-sucking micropredators and parasites. Isopods brood 10-1600 eggs depending on individual species. Strong sexual dimorphism is characteristic of several families, notably in Gnathiidae where sessile males live with a harem of females while juvenile praniza stages are ectoparasites of fish. Protandry is known in Cymothoidae and protogyny in Anthuroidea. Some Paranthuridae are neotenous. About half of all coastal, shelf and upper bathyal species have been recorded in the MEOW temperate realms, 40% in tropical regions and the remainder in polar seas. The greatest concentration of temperate species is in Australasia; more have been recorded from temperate North Pacific than the North Atlantic. Of tropical regions, the Central Indo-Pacific is home to more species any other region. Isopods are decidedly asymmetrical latitudinally with 1.35 times as many species in temperate Southern Hemisphere than the temperate North Atlantic and northern Pacific, and almost four times as many Antarctic as Arctic species. More species are known from the

  12. Microbiological diagnostics of fungal infections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Corrado Girmenia

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Laboratory tests for the detection of fungal infections are easy to perform. The main obstacle to a correct diagnosis is the correlation between the laboratory findings and the clinical diagnosis. Among pediatric patients, the most common fungal pathogen is Candida. The detection of fungal colonization may be performed through the use of chromogenic culture media, which allows also the identification of Candida subspecies, from which pathogenicity depends. In neonatology, thistest often drives the decision to begin a empiric therapy; in this regard, a close cooperation between microbiologists and clinicians is highly recommended. Blood culture, if positive, is a strong confirmation of fungal infection; however, its low sensitivity results in a high percentage of false negatives, thus decreasing its reliability. Molecular diagnostics is still under evaluation, whereas the detection of some fungal antigens, such as β-D-glucan, galactomannan, mannoprotein, and cryptococcal antigen in the serum is used for adults, but still under evaluations for pediatric patients.http://dx.doi.org/10.7175/rhc.v4i1S.862

  13. Fungal artificial chromosomes for mining of the fungal secondary metabolome

    OpenAIRE

    2015-01-01

    Background With thousands of fungal genomes being sequenced, each genome containing up to 70 secondary metabolite (SM) clusters 30–80 kb in size, breakthrough techniques are needed to characterize this SM wealth. Results Here we describe a novel system-level methodology for unbiased cloning of intact large SM clusters from a single fungal genome for one-step transformation and expression in a model host. All 56 intact SM clusters from Aspergillus terreus were individually captured in self-rep...

  14. Cytogenetic and symbiont analysis of five members of the B. dorsalis complex (Diptera, Tephritidae): no evidence of chromosomal or symbiont-based speciation events.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Augustinos, Antonios A; Drosopoulou, Elena; Gariou-Papalexiou, Aggeliki; Asimakis, Elias D; Cáceres, Carlos; Tsiamis, George; Bourtzis, Kostas; Penelope Mavragani-Tsipidou; Zacharopoulou, Antigone

    2015-01-01

    The Bactrocera dorsalis species complex, currently comprising about 90 entities has received much attention. During the last decades, considerable effort has been devoted to delimiting the species of the complex. This information is of great importance for agriculture and world trade, since the complex harbours several pest species of major economic importance and other species that could evolve into global threats. Speciation in Diptera is usually accompanied by chromosomal rearrangements, particularly inversions that are assumed to reduce/eliminate gene flow. Other candidates currently receiving much attention regarding their possible involvement in speciation are reproductive symbionts, such as Wolbachia, Spiroplasma, Arsenophonus, Rickettsia and Cardinium. Such symbionts tend to spread quickly through natural populations and can cause a variety of phenotypes that promote pre-mating and/or post-mating isolation and, in addition, can affect the biology, physiology, ecology and evolution of their insect hosts in various ways. Considering all these aspects, we present: (a) a summary of the recently gained knowledge on the cytogenetics of five members of the Bactrocera dorsalis complex, namely Bactrocera dorsalis s.s., Bactrocera invadens, Bactrocera philippinensis, Bactrocera papayae and Bactrocera carambolae, supplemented by additional data from a Bactrocera dorsalis s.s. colony from China, as well as by a cytogenetic comparison between the dorsalis complex and the genetically close species, Bactrocera tryoni, and, (b) a reproductive symbiont screening of 18 different colonized populations of these five taxa. Our analysis did not reveal any chromosomal rearrangements that could differentiate among them. Moreover, screening for reproductive symbionts was negative for all colonies derived from different geographic origins and/or hosts. There are many different factors that can lead to speciation, and our data do not support chromosomal and/or symbiotic

  15. Plant species richness and productivity determine the diversity of soil fungal guilds in temperate coniferous forest and bog habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hiiesalu, Indrek; Bahram, Mohammad; Tedersoo, Leho

    2017-09-01

    Fungi have important roles as decomposers, mycorrhizal root symbionts and pathogens in forest ecosystems, but there is limited information about their diversity and composition at the landscape scale. This work aimed to disentangle the factors underlying fungal richness and composition along the landscape-scale moisture, organic matter and productivity gradients. Using high-throughput sequencing, we identified soil fungi from 54 low-productivity Pinus sylvestris-dominated plots across three study areas in Estonia and determined the main predictors of fungal richness based on edaphic, floristic and spatial variables. Fungal richness displayed unimodal relationship with organic matter and deduced soil moisture. Plant richness and productivity constituted the key predictors for taxonomic richness of functional guilds. Composition of fungi and the main ectomycorrhizal fungal lineages and hyphal exploration types was segregated by moisture availability and soil nitrogen. We conclude that plant productivity and diversity determine the richness and proportion of most functional groups of soil fungi in low-productive pine forests on a landscape scale. Adjacent stands of pine forest may differ greatly in the dominance of functional guilds that have marked effects on soil carbon and nitrogen cycling in these forest ecosystems. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Fungal infection following renal transplantation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallis, H A; Berman, R A; Cate, T R; Hamilton, J D; Gunnells, J C; Stickel, D L

    1975-09-01

    Twenty-seven deep fungal infections developed in 22 of 171 patients following renal transplantation. These infections included cryptococcosis (ten), nocardiosis (seven), candidiasis (four), aspergillosis (two), phycomycosis (two), chromomycosis (one), and subcutaneous infection with Phialophora gougeroti (one). Twelve infections occurred in living-related and ten in cadaveric recipients. Nineteen of the 22 patients were male. Infections occurred from 0 to 61 months after transplantation. Complicating non-fungal infections were present concomitantly in 15 patients. Thirteen patients died, eight probably as a result of fungal infection. Appropriate diagnostic procedures yielded a diagnosis in 20 of 27 infections, and therapy was begun in 18 patients. Serologic, culture, and biopsy procedures useful in making rapid diagnoses are advocated in the hope of increasing survival.

  17. The Fungal Defensin Family Enlarged

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiajia Wu

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Fungi are an emerging source of peptide antibiotics. With the availability of a large number of model fungal genome sequences, we can expect that more and more fungal defensin-like peptides (fDLPs will be discovered by sequence similarity search. Here, we report a total of 69 new fDLPs encoded by 63 genes, in which a group of fDLPs derived from dermatophytes are defined as a new family (fDEF8 according to sequence and phylogenetic analyses. In the oleaginous fungus Mortierella alpine, fDLPs have undergone extensive gene expansion. Our work further enlarges the fungal defensin family and will help characterize new peptide antibiotics with therapeutic potential.

  18. Fungal laryngitis in immunocompetent patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ravikumar, A; Prasanna Kumar, S; Somu, L; Sudhir, B

    2014-01-01

    The diagnosis of fungal laryngitis is often overlooked in immunocompetent patients because it is commonly considered a disease of the immunocompromised. Further confusion is caused by clinical and histological similarity to more common conditions like Leukoplakia. Demonstration of hyperkeratosis particularly if associated with intraepithelial neutrophils on biopsy should trigger a search for fungus using specialized stains. These patients usually present with hoarseness of voice. Pain is present inconsistently along with dysphagia and odynophagia. We present three cases of fungal laryngitis in immunocompetent patients out of which one underwent microlaryngeal surgery with excision biopsy. All these patients responded well with oral antifungal therapy.

  19. Cardinium symbionts induce haploid thelytoky in most clones of three closely related Brevipalpus species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    T.V.M. Groot; J.A.J. Breeuwer

    2006-01-01

    Bacterial symbionts that manipulate the reproduction of their host to increase their own transmission are widespread. Most of these bacteria are Wolbachia, but recently a new bacterium, named Cardinium, was discovered that is capable of the same manipulations. In the host species Brevipalpus phoenic

  20. Host immunostimulation and substrate utilization of the gut symbiont Akkermansia muciniphila

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ottman, N.A.

    2015-01-01

    Host immunostimulation and substrate utilization of the gut symbiont Akkermansia muciniphila Noora A. Ottman The human gastrointestinal tract is colonized by a complex community of micro-organisms, the gut microbiota. The majority of these are bacteria, which perfor

  1. Complementary symbiont contributions to plant decomposition in a fungus-farming termite

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Poulsen, Michael; Hu, Haofu; Li, Cai; Chen, Zhensheng; Xu, Luohao; Otani, Saria; Nygaard, Sanne; Nobre, Tania; Klaubauf, S.; Schindler, Philipp M; Hauser, Frank; Pan, Hailin; Yang, Zhikai; Sonnenberg, Anton S M; de Beer, Z Wilhelm; Zhang, Yong; Wingfield, Michael J; Grimmelikhuijzen, Cornelis J P; de Vries, Ronald P; Korb, Judith; Aanen, Duur K; Wang, Jun; Boomsma, Jacobus J; Zhang, Guojie; van den Brink, J.

    2014-01-01

    Termites normally rely on gut symbionts to decompose organic matter but the Macrotermitinae domesticated Termitomyces fungi to produce their own food. This transition was accompanied by a shift in the composition of the gut microbiota, but the complementary roles of these bacteria in the symbiosis h

  2. Metabolite profiling of symbiont and host during thermal stress and bleaching in the coral Acropora aspera

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hillyer, Katie E.; Dias, Daniel A.; Lutz, Adrian; Wilkinson, Shaun P.; Roessner, Ute; Davy, Simon K.

    2017-03-01

    Rising seawater temperatures pose a significant threat to the persistence of coral reefs. Despite the importance of these systems, major gaps remain in our understanding of how thermal stress and bleaching affect the metabolic networks that underpin holobiont function. We applied gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) metabolomics to detect changes in the intracellular free metabolite pools (polar and semi-polar compounds) of in hospite dinoflagellate symbionts and their coral hosts (and any associated microorganisms) during early- and late-stage thermal bleaching (a reduction of approximately 50 and 70% in symbiont density, respectively). We detected characteristic changes to the metabolite profiles of each symbiotic partner associated with individual cellular responses to thermal, oxidative and osmotic stress, which progressed with the severity of bleaching. Alterations were also indicative of changes to energy-generating and biosynthesis pathways in both partners, with a shift to the increased catabolism of lipid stores. Specifically, in symbiont intracellular metabolite pools, we observed accumulations of multiple free fatty acids, plus the chloroplast-associated antioxidant alpha-tocopherol. In the host, we detected a decline in the abundance of pools of multiple carbohydrates, amino acids and intermediates, in addition to the antioxidant ascorbate. These findings further our understanding of the metabolic changes that occur to symbiont and host (and its associated microorganisms) during thermal bleaching. These findings also provide further insight into the largely undescribed roles of free metabolite pools in cellular homeostasis, signalling and acclimation to thermal stress in the cnidarian-dinoflagellate symbiosis.

  3. Symbiont recognition of mutualistic bacteria by Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhang, Mingzi; Poulsen, Michael; Currie, Cameron R

    2007-01-01

    Symbiont choice has been proposed to play an important role in shaping many symbiotic relationships, including the fungus-growing ant-microbe mutualism. Over millions of years, fungus-growing ants have defended their fungus gardens from specialized parasites with antibiotics produced by an actino...

  4. Aiptasia sp. larvae as a model to reveal mechanisms of symbiont selection in cnidarians

    KAUST Repository

    Wolfowicz, Iliona

    2016-09-01

    Symbiosis, defined as the persistent association between two distinct species, is an evolutionary and ecologically critical phenomenon facilitating survival of both partners in diverse habitats. The biodiversity of coral reef ecosystems depends on a functional symbiosis with photosynthetic dinoflagellates of the highly diverse genus Symbiodinium, which reside in coral host cells and continuously support their nutrition. The mechanisms underlying symbiont selection to establish a stable endosymbiosis in non-symbiotic juvenile corals are unclear. Here we show for the first time that symbiont selection patterns for larvae of two Acropora coral species and the model anemone Aiptasia are similar under controlled conditions. We find that Aiptasia larvae distinguish between compatible and incompatible symbionts during uptake into the gastric cavity and phagocytosis. Using RNA-Seq, we identify a set of candidate genes potentially involved in symbiosis establishment. Together, our data complement existing molecular resources to mechanistically dissect symbiont phagocytosis in cnidarians under controlled conditions, thereby strengthening the role of Aiptasia larvae as a powerful model for cnidarian endosymbiosis establishment.

  5. Complete Genome Sequence of Bradyrhizobium diazoefficiens USDA 122, a Nitrogen-Fixing Soybean Symbiont

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugawara, Masayuki; Tsukui, Takahiro; Kaneko, Takakazu; Ohtsubo, Yoshiyuki; Sato, Shusei; Nagata, Yuji; Tsuda, Masataka; Mitsui, Hisayuki

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT We report the complete genome sequence of Bradyrhizobium diazoefficiens USDA 122, a nitrogen-fixing soybean symbiont. The genome consists of a 9.1 Mb circular chromosome, and 8,551 coding sequences (CDSs) were predicted on the genome. The sequence will provide insight into the evolution of rhizobial genome, and the symbiotic compatibility with host plants. PMID:28254989

  6. Antitumor polyketide biosynthesis by an uncultivated bacterial symbiont of the marine sponge Theonella swinhoei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piel, Jörn; Hui, Dequan; Wen, Gaiping; Butzke, Daniel; Platzer, Matthias; Fusetani, Nobuhiro; Matsunaga, Shigeki

    2004-11-16

    Bacterial symbionts have long been suspected to be the true producers of many drug candidates isolated from marine invertebrates. Sponges, the most important marine source of biologically active natural products, have been frequently hypothesized to contain compounds of bacterial origin. This symbiont hypothesis, however, remained unproven because of a general inability to cultivate the suspected producers. However, we have recently identified an uncultured Pseudomonas sp. symbiont as the most likely producer of the defensive antitumor polyketide pederin in Paederus fuscipes beetles by cloning the putative biosynthesis genes. Here we report closely related genes isolated from the highly complex metagenome of the marine sponge Theonella swinhoei, which is the source of the onnamides and theopederins, a group of polyketides that structurally resemble pederin. Sequence features of the isolated genes clearly indicate that it belongs to a prokaryotic genome and should be responsible for the biosynthesis of almost the entire portion of the polyketide structure that is correlated with antitumor activity. Besides providing further proof for the role of the related beetle symbiont-derived genes, these findings raise intriguing ecological and evolutionary questions and have important general implications for the sustainable production of otherwise inaccessible marine drugs by using biotechnological strategies.

  7. Exploring the chemistry of uncultivated bacterial symbionts: antitumor polyketides of the pederin family.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piel, Jörn; Butzke, Daniel; Fusetani, Nobuhiro; Hui, Dequan; Platzer, Matthias; Wen, Gaiping; Matsunaga, Shigeki

    2005-03-01

    Symbiotic bacteria have long been proposed as being responsible for the production of numerous natural products isolated from invertebrate animals. However, systematic studies of invertebrate-symbiont associations are usually associated with serious technical challenges, such as the general resistance of symbionts to culturing attempts and the complexity of many microbial consortia. Herein an overview is provided on the culture-independent, metagenomic strategies recently employed by our group to contribute to a better understanding of natural product symbiosis. Using terrestrial Paederus spp. beetles and the marine sponge Theonella swinhoei as model animals, the putative genes responsible for the production of pederin-type antitumor polyketides have been isolated. In Paederus fuscipes, which uses pederin for chemical defense, these genes belong to an as-yet unculturable symbiont closely related to Pseudomonas aeruginosa. To study the extremely complex association of T. swinhoei and its multispecies bacterial consortium, we used a phylogenetic approach that allowed the isolation of onnamide/theopederin polyketide synthase genes from an uncultured sponge symbiont. Analysis of the biosynthesis genes provided unexpected insights into a possible evolution of pederin-type pathways. Besides revealing new facets of invertebrate chemical ecology, these first gene clusters from uncultivated symbiotic producers suggest possible biotechnological strategies to solve the supply problem associated with the development of most marine drug candidates.

  8. Earthworms and their Nephridial Symbionts: Co-diversification and Maintenance of the Symbiosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Marie Braad; Holmstrup, Martin; Davidson, Seana K.;

    ] and are vertically transmitted [3]. For these reasons we hypothesized that the earthworm-Verminephrobacter association evolved by co-diversification. This hypothesis was investigated by a comparison of earthworm and symbiont phylogenies. The earthworm phylogeny was based on Cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI...

  9. Symbiont shift towards Rhizobium nodulation in a group of phylogenetically related Phaseolus species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Servín-Garcidueñas, Luis E; Zayas-Del Moral, Alejandra; Ormeño-Orrillo, Ernesto; Rogel, Marco A; Delgado-Salinas, Alfonso; Sánchez, Federico; Martínez-Romero, Esperanza

    2014-10-01

    Bean plants from the Phaseolus genus are widely consumed and represent a nitrogen source for human nutrition. They provide biological fertilization by establishing root nodule symbiosis with nitrogen-fixing bacteria. To establish a successful interaction, bean plants and their symbiotic bacteria need to synchronize a proper molecular crosstalk. Within the Phaseolus genus, P. vulgaris has been the prominent species to study nodulation with Rhizobium symbionts. However the Phaseolus genus comprises diverse species whose symbionts have not been analyzed. Here we identified and studied nodule bacteria from representative Phaseolus species not previously analyzed and from all the described wild species related to P. vulgaris. We found Bradyrhizobium in nodules from most species representing all Phaseolus clades except in five phylogenetically related species from the P. vulgaris clade. Therefore we propose that Bradyrhizobium nodulation is common in Phaseolus and that there was a symbiont preference shift to Rhizobium nodulation in few related species. This work sets the basis to further study the genetic basis of this symbiont substitution.

  10. Co-Speciation of Earthworms and their nephridial symbionts, Acidovorax Spp

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Marie Braad; Fritz, Michael; Holmstrup, Martin

    2006-01-01

    within the genus Acidovorax [2], and they are transmitted vertically [3]. For these reasons, we suggest that the earthworm-Acidovorax association has evolved by co-speciation. This hypothesis was tested by a comparative study of earthworm and symbiont phylogeny. Different earthworm species were collected...

  11. Unique genome evolution in an intracellular N2-fixing symbiont of a rhopalodiacean diatom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takuro Nakayama

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Cyanobacteria, the major photosynthetic prokaryotic lineage, are also known as a major nitrogen fixer in nature. N2-fixing cyanobacteria are frequently found in symbioses with various types of eukaryotes and supply fixed nitrogen compounds to their eukaryotic hosts, which congenitally lack N2-fixing abilities. Diatom species belonging to the family Rhopalodiaceae also possess cyanobacterial symbionts called spheroid bodies. Unlike other cyanobacterial N2-fixing symbionts, the spheroid bodies reside in the cytoplasm of the diatoms and are inseparable from their hosts. Recently, the first spheroid body genome from a rhopalodiacean diatom has been completely sequenced. Overall features of the genome sequence showed significant reductive genome evolution resulting in a diminution of metabolic capacity. Notably, despite its cyanobacterial origin, the spheroid body was shown to be truly incapable of photosynthesis implying that the symbiont energetically depends on the host diatom. The comparative genome analysis between the spheroid body and another N2-fixing symbiotic cyanobacterial group corresponding to the UCYN-A phylotypes – both were derived from cyanobacteria closely related to genus Cyanothece – revealed that the two symbionts are on similar, but explicitly distinct tracks of reductive evolution. Intimate symbiotic relationships linked by nitrogen fixation as seen in rhopalodiacean diatoms may help us better understand the evolution and mechanisms of bacterium-eukaryote endosymbioses.

  12. Conditional fitness benefits of the Rickettsia bacterial symbiont in an insect pest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cass, Bodil N; Himler, Anna G; Bondy, Elizabeth C; Bergen, Jacquelyn E; Fung, Sierra K; Kelly, Suzanne E; Hunter, Martha S

    2016-01-01

    Inherited bacterial symbionts are common in arthropods and can have strong effects on the biology of their hosts. These effects are often mediated by host ecology. The Rickettsia symbiont can provide strong fitness benefits to its insect host, Bemisia tabaci, under laboratory and field conditions. However, the frequency of the symbiont is heterogeneous among field collection sites across the USA, suggesting that the benefits of the symbiont are contingent on additional factors. In two whitefly genetic lines collected from the same location, we tested the effect of Rickettsia on whitefly survival after heat shock, on whitefly competitiveness at different temperatures, and on whitefly competitiveness at different starting frequencies of Rickettsia. Rickettsia did not provide protection against heat shock nor affect the competitiveness of whiteflies at different temperatures or starting frequencies. However, there was a strong interaction between Rickettsia infection and whitefly genetic line. Performance measures indicated that Rickettsia was associated with significant female bias in both whitefly genetic lines, but in the second whitefly genetic line it conferred no significant fitness benefits nor conferred any competitive advantage to its host over uninfected whiteflies in population cages. These results help to explain other reports of variation in the phenotype of the symbiosis. Furthermore, they demonstrate the complex nature of these close symbiotic associations and the need to consider these interactions in the context of host population structure.

  13. Host immunostimulation and substrate utilization of the gut symbiont Akkermansia muciniphila

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ottman, N.A.

    2015-01-01

    Host immunostimulation and substrate utilization of the gut symbiont Akkermansia muciniphila Noora A. Ottman The human gastrointestinal tract is colonized by a complex community of micro-organisms, the gut microbiota. The majority of these are bacteria, which perfor

  14. igh Symbiont Relatedness Stabilizes Mutualistic Cooperation in Fungus-Growing Termites

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aanen, D.K.; Fine Licht, De H.H.; Debets, A.J.M.; Kerstes, N.A.G.; Hoekstra, R.F.; Boomsma, J.J.

    2009-01-01

    It is unclear how mutualistic relationships can be stable when partners disperse freely and have the possibility of forming associations with many alternative genotypes. Theory predicts that high symbiont relatedness should resolve this problem, but the mechanisms to enforce this have rarely been st

  15. The roles and interactions of symbiont, host and environment in defining coral fitness

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mieog, J.C.; Olsen, J.L.; Berkelmans, R; Bleuler-Martinez, S.A.; Willis, B.; van Oppen, M.J H

    2009-01-01

    Background: Reef-building corals live in symbiosis with a diverse range of dinoflagellate algae ( genus Symbiodinium) that differentially influence the fitness of the coral holobiont. The comparative role of symbiont type in holobiont fitness in relation to host genotype or the environment, however,

  16. Marine Maladies? Worms, Germs, and Other Symbionts from the Northern Gulf of Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Overstreet, Robin M.

    Parasites and related symbionts of marine and estuarine hosts of the northern Gulf of Mexico are described in this guidebook. It is meant primarily to serve as a teaching aid for the novice student, but it also contains more technical aspects for the experienced parasitologist. Forms and examples of symbiosis are explained in an introductory…

  17. Comparative Genomics of Facultative Bacterial Symbionts Isolated from European Orius Species Reveals an Ancestral Symbiotic Association

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaorui Chen

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Pest control in agriculture employs diverse strategies, among which the use of predatory insects has steadily increased. The use of several species within the genus Orius in pest control is widely spread, particularly in Mediterranean Europe. Commercial mass rearing of predatory insects is costly, and research efforts have concentrated on diet manipulation and selective breeding to reduce costs and improve efficacy. The characterisation and contribution of microbial symbionts to Orius sp. fitness, behaviour, and potential impact on human health has been neglected. This paper provides the first genome sequence level description of the predominant culturable facultative bacterial symbionts associated with five Orius species (O. laevigatus, O. niger, O. pallidicornis, O. majusculus, and O. albidipennis from several geographical locations. Two types of symbionts were broadly classified as members of the genera Serratia and Leucobacter, while a third constitutes a new genus within the Erwiniaceae. These symbionts were found to colonise all the insect specimens tested, which evidenced an ancestral symbiotic association between these bacteria and the genus Orius. Pangenome analyses of the Serratia sp. isolates offered clues linking Type VI secretion system effector–immunity proteins from the Tai4 sub-family to the symbiotic lifestyle.

  18. Characterization of a newly discovered symbiont of the whitefly Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bing, Xiao-Li; Yang, Jiao; Zchori-Fein, Einat; Wang, Xiao-Wei; Liu, Shu-Sheng

    2013-01-01

    Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) is a species complex containing >28 cryptic species, some of which are important crop pests worldwide. Like many other sap-sucking insects, whiteflies harbor an obligatory symbiont, "Candidatus Portiera aleyrodidarum," and a number of secondary symbionts. So far, six genera of secondary symbionts have been identified in B. tabaci. In this study, we report and describe the finding of an additional bacterium in the indigenous B. tabaci cryptic species China 1 (formerly known as B. tabaci biotype ZHJ3). Phylogenetic analysis based on the 16S rRNA and gltA genes showed that the bacterium belongs to the Alphaproteobacteria subdivision of the Proteobacteria and has a close relationship with human pathogens of the genus Orientia. Consequently, we temporarily named it Orientia-like organism (OLO). OLO was found in six of eight wild populations of B. tabaci China 1, with the infection rate ranging from 46.2% to 76.8%. Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) of B. tabaci China 1 in nymphs and adults revealed that OLOs are confined to the bacteriome and co-occur with "Ca. Portiera aleyrodidarum." The vertical transmission of OLO was demonstrated by detection of OLO at the anterior pole end of the oocytes through FISH. Quantitative PCR analysis of population dynamics suggested a complex interaction between "Ca. Portiera aleyrodidarum" and OLO. Based on these results, we propose "Candidatus Hemipteriphilus asiaticus" for the classification of this symbiont from B. tabaci.

  19. Symbiotic adaptation drives genome streamlining of the cyanobacterial sponge symbiont "Candidatus Synechococcus pongiarum"

    KAUST Repository

    Gao, Zhao-Ming

    2014-04-01

    "Candidatus Synechococcus spongiarum" is a cyanobacterial symbiont widely distributed in sponges, but its functions at the genome level remain unknown. Here, we obtained the draft genome (1.66 Mbp, 90% estimated genome recovery) of "Ca. Synechococcus spongiarum" strain SH4 inhabiting the Red Sea sponge Carteriospongia foliascens. Phylogenomic analysis revealed a high dissimilarity between SH4 and free-living cyanobacterial strains. Essential functions, such as photosynthesis, the citric acid cycle, and DNA replication, were detected in SH4. Eukaryoticlike domains that play important roles in sponge-symbiont interactions were identified exclusively in the symbiont. However, SH4 could not biosynthesize methionine and polyamines and had lost partial genes encoding low-molecular-weight peptides of the photosynthesis complex, antioxidant enzymes, DNA repair enzymes, and proteins involved in resistance to environmental toxins and in biosynthesis of capsular and extracellular polysaccharides. These genetic modifications imply that "Ca. Synechococcus spongiarum" SH4 represents a low-light-adapted cyanobacterial symbiont and has undergone genome streamlining to adapt to the sponge\\'s mild intercellular environment. 2014 Gao et al.

  20. Diversity and localization of bacterial symbionts in three whitefly species (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) from the east coast of the Adriatic Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skaljac, M; Zanić, K; Hrnčić, S; Radonjić, S; Perović, T; Ghanim, M

    2013-02-01

    Several whitefly species (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) are cosmopolitan phloem-feeders that cause serious damage in numerous agricultural crops. All whitefly species harbor a primary bacterial symbiont and a diverse array of secondary symbionts which may influence several aspects of the insect's biology. We surveyed infections by secondary symbionts in Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius), Trialeurodes vaporariorum (Westwood) and Siphoninus phillyreae (Haliday) from areas in the east cost of the Adriatic Sea. Both the Middle East-Asia Minor 1 (MEAM1) and Mediterranean (MED) B. tabaci genetic groups were detected in Montenegro, whereas only the MED was confirmed in Croatia. Trialeurodes vaporariorum and S. phillyreae were found in all areas surveyed. MEAM1 and MED exhibited similarity to previously reported infections, while populations of T. vaporariorum from Montenegro harbored Rickettsia, Wolbachia and Cardinium in addition to previously reported Hamiltonella and Arsenopnohus. Siphoninus phillyreae harbored Hamiltonella, Wolbachia, Cardinium and Arsenophonus, with the latter appearing in two alleles. Multiple infections of all symbionts were common in the three insect species tested, with some reaching near fixation. Florescent in situ hybridization showed new localization patterns for Hamiltonella in S. phillyreae, and the morphology of the bacteriosome differed from that observed in other whitefly species. Our results show new infections with bacterial symbionts in the whitefly species studied. Infections with the same symbionts in reproductively isolated whitefly species confirm complex relationships between whiteflies and bacterial symbionts, and suggest possible horizontal transfer of some of these bacteria.

  1. Protective immune responses to fungal infections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivera, A

    2014-09-01

    The incidence of fungal infections has been on the rise over several decades. Fungal infections threaten animals, plants and humans alike and are thus of significant concern to scientists across disciplines. Over the last decade, significant advances on fungal immunology have lead to a better understanding of important mechanisms of host protection against fungi. In this article, I review recent advances of relevant mechanisms of immune-mediated protection to fungal infections.

  2. Symbiont Polyphyly, Co-Evolution, and Necessity in Pentatomid Stinkbugs from Costa Rica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kalia S.I. Bistolas

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Interdomain symbioses with bacteria allow insects to take advantage of underutilized niches and provide the foundation for their evolutionary success in neotropical ecosystems. The gut microbiota of 13 micro-allopatric tropical pentatomid species, from a Costa Rican lowland rainforest, was characterized and compared with insect and host plant phylogenies. Like other families within the Pentatomomorpha, these insects (within seven genera - Antiteuchus, Arvelius, Edessa, Euschistus, Loxa, Mormidea and Sibaria house near-monocultures of gamma-proteobacteria in modified midgut crypts, comprising three distinct lineages within the family Enterobacteriaceae. Identity of the dominant bacteria (78-100% of the recovered 16S rRNA genes was partially congruent with insect phylogeny, at the level of subfamily and tribe, with bacteria closely related to Erwinia observed in six species of the subfamily Pentatominae, and bacteria bacteria in a novel clade of Enterobacteriaceae for seven species within the subfamilies Edessinae and Discocephalinae. Symbiont replacement (i.e. bacterial ‘contamination’ from the environment is probable due to modified maternal transmission by smearing of bacteria onto the egg surfaces during oviposition. This strategy was confirmed for Sibaria englemani, and suspected for four species from two subfamilies, based on observed probing of eggs by nymphs in captivity. Symbiont-deprived S. englemani, acquired via egg surface sterilization, exhibited significantly extended second stadia (9.1 days compared with 7.9 days for symbiotic nymphs; p=0.0001, Wilcoxon’s rank with Bonferroni correction, slower linearized growth rates (p=0.005, Welch 2-sample t-test, and observable differences in ceca morphology compared to symbiotic nymphs. Combined, these results suggest a role of the symbiont in host development, the reliable transference of symbionts via egg surfaces, and a degree of co-speciation between symbiont and tropical pentatomid

  3. The roles and interactions of symbiont, host and environment in defining coral fitness.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jos C Mieog

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Reef-building corals live in symbiosis with a diverse range of dinoflagellate algae (genus Symbiodinium that differentially influence the fitness of the coral holobiont. The comparative role of symbiont type in holobiont fitness in relation to host genotype or the environment, however, is largely unknown. We addressed this knowledge gap by manipulating host-symbiont combinations and comparing growth, survival and thermal tolerance among the resultant holobionts in different environments. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Offspring of the coral, Acropora millepora, from two thermally contrasting locations, were experimentally infected with one of six Symbiodinium types, which spanned three phylogenetic clades (A, C and D, and then outplanted to the two parental field locations (central and southern inshore Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Growth and survival of juvenile corals were monitored for 31-35 weeks, after which their thermo-tolerance was experimentally assessed. Our results showed that: (1 Symbiodinium type was the most important predictor of holobiont fitness, as measured by growth, survival, and thermo-tolerance; (2 growth and survival, but not heat-tolerance, were also affected by local environmental conditions; and (3 host population had little to no effect on holobiont fitness. Furthermore, coral-algal associations were established with symbiont types belonging to clades A, C and D, but three out of four symbiont types belonging to clade C failed to establish a symbiosis. Associations with clade A had the lowest fitness and were unstable in the field. Lastly, Symbiodinium types C1 and D were found to be relatively thermo-tolerant, with type D conferring the highest tolerance in A. millepora. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: These results highlight the complex interactions that occur between the coral host, the algal symbiont, and the environment to shape the fitness of the coral holobiont. An improved understanding of the factors

  4. Contrasting physiological plasticity in response to environmental stress within different cnidarians and their respective symbionts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoadley, Kenneth D.; Pettay, Daniel. T.; Dodge, Danielle; Warner, Mark E.

    2016-06-01

    Given concerns surrounding coral bleaching and ocean acidification, there is renewed interest in characterizing the physiological differences across the multiple host-algal symbiont combinations commonly found on coral reefs. Elevated temperature and CO2 were used to compare physiological responses within the scleractinian corals Montipora hirsuta ( Symbiodinium C15) and Pocillopora damicornis ( Symbiodinium D1), as well as the corallimorph (a non-calcifying anthozoan closely related to scleractinians) Discosoma nummiforme ( Symbiodinium C3). Several physiological proxies were affected more by temperature than CO2, including photochemistry, algal number and cellular chlorophyll a. Marked differences in symbiont number, chlorophyll and volume contributed to distinctive patterns of chlorophyll absorption among these animals. In contrast, carbon fixation either did not change or increased under elevated temperature. Also, the rate of photosynthetically fixed carbon translocated to each host did not change, and the percent of carbon translocated to the host increased in the corallimorph. Comparing all data revealed a significant negative correlation between photosynthetic rate and symbiont density that corroborates previous hypotheses about carbon limitation in these symbioses. The ratio of symbiont-normalized photosynthetic rate relative to the rate of symbiont-normalized carbon translocation (P:T) was compared in these organisms as well as the anemone, Exaiptasia pallida hosting Symbiodinium minutum, and revealed a P:T close to unity ( D. nummiforme) to a range of 2.0-4.5, with the lowest carbon translocation in the sea anemone. Major differences in the thermal responses across these organisms provide further evidence of a range of acclimation potential and physiological plasticity that highlights the need for continued study of these symbioses across a larger group of host taxa.

  5. Does coral disease affect symbiodinium? Investigating the impacts of growth anomaly on symbiont photophysiology.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John Henrik Robert Burns

    Full Text Available Growth anomaly (GA is a commonly observed coral disease that impairs biological functions of the affected tissue. GA is prevalent at Wai 'ōpae tide pools, southeast Hawai 'i Island. Here two distinct forms of this disease, Type A and Type B, affect the coral, Montiporacapitata. While the effects of GA on biology and ecology of the coral host are beginning to be understood, the impact of this disease on the photophysiology of the dinoflagellate symbiont, Symbiodinium spp., has not been investigated. The GA clearly alters coral tissue structure and skeletal morphology and density. These tissue and skeletal changes are likely to modify not only the light micro-environment of the coral tissue, which has a direct impact on the photosynthetic potential of Symbiodinium spp., but also the physiological interactions within the symbiosis. This study utilized Pulse amplitude modulation fluorometry (PAM to characterize the photophysiology of healthy and GA-affected M. capitata tissue. Overall, endosymbionts within GA-affected tissue exhibit reduced photochemical efficiency. Values of both Fv/Fm and ΔF/ Fm' were significantly lower (p<0.01 in GA tissue compared to healthy and unaffected tissues. Tracking the photophysiology of symbionts over a diurnal time period enabled a comparison of symbiont responses to photosynthetically available radiation (PAR among tissue conditions. Symbionts within GA tissue exhibited the lowest values of ΔF/Fm' as well as the highest pressure over photosystem II (p<0.01. This study provides evidence that the symbionts within GA-affected tissue are photochemically compromised compared to those residing in healthy tissue.

  6. Relationships between host and symbiont cell cycles in sea anemones and their symbiotic dinoflagellates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dimond, James L; Pineda, Rea R; Ramos-Ascherl, Zullaylee; Bingham, Brian L

    2013-10-01

    The processes by which cnidarians and their algal endosymbionts achieve balanced growth and biomass could include coordination of host and symbiont cell cycles. We evaluated this theory with natural populations of sea anemones hosting symbiotic dinoflagellates, focusing on the temperate sea anemone Anthopleura elegantissima symbiotic with Symbiodinium muscatinei in Washington State, USA, and the tropical anemone Stichodactyla helianthus associating with unknown Symbiodinium spp. in Belize. By extruding symbiont-containing gastrodermal cells from the relatively large tentacles of these species and using nuclear staining and flow cytometry, we selectively analyzed cell cycle distributions of the symbionts and the host gastrodermal cells that house them. We found no indications of diel synchrony in host and symbiont G2/M phases, and we observed evidence of diel periodicity only in Symbiodinium spp. associated with S. helianthus but not in the anemone itself. Seasonally, S. muscatinei showed considerable G2/M phase variability among samples collected quarterly over an annual period, while the G2/M phase of its host varied much less. Within samples taken at different times of the year, correlations between host and symbiont G2/M phases ranged from very weakly to very strongly positive, with significant correlations in only half of the samples (two of four A. elegantissima samples and one of two S. helianthus samples). Overall, the G2/M phase relationships across species and sampling periods were positive. Thus, while we found no evidence of close cell cycle coupling, our results suggest a loose, positive relationship between cell cycle processes of the symbiotic partners.

  7. Vertical evolution and intragenic spread of lichen-fungal group I introns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhattacharya, Debashish; Friedl, Thomas; Helms, Gert

    2002-07-01

    One family within the Euascomycetes (Ascomycota), the lichen-forming Physciaceae, is particularly rich in nuclear ribosomal [r]DNA group I introns. We used phylogenetic analyses of group I introns and lichen-fungal host cells to address four questions about group I intron evolution in lichens, and generally in all eukaryotes: 1) Is intron spread in the lichens associated with the intimate association of the fungal and photosynthetic cells that make up the lichen thallus? 2) Are the multiple group I introns in the lichen-fungi of independent origins, or have existing introns spread into novel sites in the rDNA? 3) If introns have moved to novel sites, then does the exon context of these sites provide insights into the mechanism of intron spread? and 4) What is the pattern of intron loss in the small subunit rDNA gene of lichen-fungi? Our analyses show that group I introns in the lichen-fungi and in the lichen-algae (and lichenized cyanobacteria) do not share a close evolutionary relationship, suggesting that these introns do not move between the symbionts. Many group I introns appear to have originated in the common ancestor of the Lecanorales, whereas others have spread within this lineage (particularly in the Physciaceae) putatively through reverse-splicing into novel rRNA sites. We suggest that the evolutionary history of most lichen-fungal group I introns is characterized by rare gains followed by extensive losses in descendants, resulting in a sporadic intron distribution. Detailed phylogenetic analyses of the introns and host cells are required, therefore, to distinguish this scenario from the alternative hypothesis of widespread and independent intron gains in the different lichen-fungal lineages.

  8. Fungal genes related to calcium homeostasis and signalling are upregulated in symbiotic arbuscular mycorrhiza interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yi; Gianinazzi-Pearson, Vivienne; Arnould, Christine; Wipf, Daniel; Zhao, Bin; van Tuinen, Diederik

    2013-01-01

    Fluctuations in intracellular calcium levels generate signalling events and regulate different cellular processes. Whilst the implication of Ca(2+) in plant responses during arbuscular mycorrhiza (AM) interactions is well documented, nothing is known about the regulation or role of this secondary messenger in the fungal symbiont. The spatio-temporal expression pattern of putatively Ca(2+)-related genes of Glomus intraradices BEG141 encoding five proteins involved in membrane transport and one nuclear protein kinase, was investigated during the AM symbiosis. Expression profiles related to successful colonization of host roots were observed in interactions of G. intraradices with roots of wild-type Medicago truncatula (line J5) compared to the mycorrhiza-defective mutant dmi3/Mtsym13. Symbiotic fungal activity was monitored using stearoyl-CoA desaturase and phosphate transporter genes. Laser microdissection based-mapping of fungal gene expression in mycorrhizal root tissues indicated that the Ca(2+)-related genes were differentially upregulated in arbuscules and/or in intercellular hyphae. The spatio-temporal variations in gene expression suggest that the encoded proteins may have different functions in fungal development or function during symbiosis development. Full-length cDNA obtained for two genes with interesting expression profiles confirmed a close similarity with an endoplasmic reticulum P-type ATPase and a Vcx1-like vacuolar Ca(2+) ion transporter functionally characterized in other fungi and involved in the regulation of cell calcium pools. Possible mechanisms are discussed in which Ca(2+)-related proteins G. intraradices BEG141 may play a role in mobilization and perception of the intracellular messenger by the AM fungus during symbiotic interactions with host roots. Copyright © 2012 The British Mycological Society. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Imaging fungal infections in children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ankrah, Alfred O.; Sathekge, Mike M; Dierckx, Rudi A.J.O.; Glaudemans, Andor W.J.M.

    2016-01-01

    Fungal infections in children rarely occur, but continue to have a high morbidity and mortality despite the development of newer antifungal agents. It is essential for these infections to be diagnosed at the earliest possible stage so appropriate treatment can be initiated promptly. The addition of

  10. Microbiology of systemic fungal infections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chakrabarti A

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available The increased incidence of systemic fungal infections in the past two decades has been overwhelming. Earlier, it was pathogenic dimorphic fungi, which were known to cause systemic infections. However, starting from the 1960s, opportunistic fungi started causing more number of infections, especially in the immunocompromised host. More recently, newer and less common fungal agents are being increasingly associated with infection in immunosuppressed hosts. Amongst dimorphic fungi, infections due to Histoplasma capsulatum and Penicillium marneffei are increasingly reported in patients with AIDS in India. H. capsulatum is found country wide, but P. marneffei remains restricted to Manipur state. Although both varieties of C. neoformans , C. neoformans var. neoformans (serotypes A & D, and C. neoformans var. gattii (serotypes B & C are reported in India, most of the cases reported are of serotype A. Increased incidence of cryptococcosis is reported from all centers with the emergence of AIDS. Systemic infection due to species under Candida , Aspergillus and zygomycetes is widely prevalent in nosocomial setting, and outbreaks due to unusual fungi are reported occasionally from tertiary care centers. This global change in systemic fungal infections has emphasized the need to develop good diagnostic mycology laboratories in this country and to recognize this increasingly large group of potential fungal pathogens.

  11. Fungal endophyte diversity in Sarracenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fungal endophytes were isolated from four species of the carnivorous pitcher plant genus Sarracenia: S. minor, S. oreophila, S. purpurea, and S. psittacina. Twelve taxa of fungi, eight within the Ascomycota and four within the Basidiomycota, were identified based on PCR amplification and sequencing ...

  12. (Post-)genomics approaches in fungal research

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aguilar-Pontes, María Victoria; de Vries, Ronald P; Zhou, M.; van den Brink, J.

    2014-01-01

    To date, hundreds of fungal genomes have been sequenced and many more are in progress. This wealth of genomic information has provided new directions to study fungal biodiversity. However, to further dissect and understand the complicated biological mechanisms involved in fungal life styles, functio

  13. Subseafloor basalts as fungal habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivarsson, M.

    2012-09-01

    The oceanic crust is believed to host the largest potential habitat for microbial life on Earth, yet, still we lack substantial information about the abundance, diversity, and consequence of its biosphere. The last two decades have involved major research accomplishments within this field and a change in view of the ocean crust and its potential to harbour life. Here fossilised fungal colonies in subseafloor basalts are reported from three different seamounts in the Pacific Ocean. The fungal colonies consist of various characteristic structures interpreted as fungal hyphae, fruit bodies and spores. The fungal hyphae are well preserved with morphological characteristics such as hyphal walls, septa, thallic conidiogenesis, and hyphal tips with hyphal vesicles within. The fruit bodies consist of large (∼50-200 µm in diameter) body-like structures with a defined outer membrane and an interior filled with calcite. The fruit bodies have at some stage been emptied of their contents of spores and filled by carbonate-forming fluids. A few fruit bodies not filled by calcite and with spores still within support this interpretation. Spore-like structures (ranging from a few µm to ∼20 µm in diameter) are also observed outside of the fruit bodies and in some cases concentrated to openings in the membrane of the fruit bodies. The hyphae, fruit bodies and spores are all closely associated with a crust lining the vein walls that probably represent a mineralized biofilm. The results support a fungal presence in deep subseafloor basalts and indicate that such habitats were vital between ∼81 and 48 Ma.

  14. The Chemical Basis of Fungal Bioluminescence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Purtov, Konstantin V; Petushkov, Valentin N; Baranov, Mikhail S; Mineev, Konstantin S; Rodionova, Natalja S; Kaskova, Zinaida M; Tsarkova, Aleksandra S; Petunin, Alexei I; Bondar, Vladimir S; Rodicheva, Emma K; Medvedeva, Svetlana E; Oba, Yuichi; Oba, Yumiko; Arseniev, Alexander S; Lukyanov, Sergey; Gitelson, Josef I; Yampolsky, Ilia V

    2015-07-06

    Many species of fungi naturally produce light, a phenomenon known as bioluminescence, however, the fungal substrates used in the chemical reactions that produce light have not been reported. We identified the fungal compound luciferin 3-hydroxyhispidin, which is biosynthesized by oxidation of the precursor hispidin, a known fungal and plant secondary metabolite. The fungal luciferin does not share structural similarity with the other eight known luciferins. Furthermore, it was shown that 3-hydroxyhispidin leads to bioluminescence in extracts from four diverse genera of luminous fungi, thus suggesting a common biochemical mechanism for fungal bioluminescence.

  15. Land use practices and ectomycorrhizal fungal communities from oak woodlands dominated by Quercus suber L. considering drought scenarios.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azul, Anabela Marisa; Sousa, João Paulo; Agerer, Reinhard; Martín, María P; Freitas, Helena

    2010-02-01

    Oak woodlands in the Mediterranean basin have been traditionally converted into agro-silvo-pastoral systems and exemplified sustainable land use in Europe. In Portugal, in line with the trend of other European countries, profound changes in management options during the twentieth century have led to landscape simplification. Landscapes are dynamic and the knowledge of future management planning combining biological conservation and soil productivity is needed, especially under the actual scenarios of drought and increasing evidence of heavy oak mortality. We examined the ectomycorrhizal (ECM) fungal community associated with cork oak in managed oak woodlands (called montado) under different land use practices, during summer. ECM fungal richness and abundance were assessed in 15 stands established in nine montados located in the Alentejo region (southern Portugal), using morphotyping and ITS rDNA analysis. Parameters related to the montados landscape characteristics, land use history over the last 25 years, climatic and edaphic conditions were taken into account. Fifty-five ECM fungal taxa corresponding to the most abundant fungal symbionts were distinguished on cork oak roots. Cenococcum geophilum and the families Russulaceae and Thelephoraceae explained 56% of the whole ECM fungal community; other groups were represented among the community: Cortinariaceae, Boletaceae, Amanita, Genea, Pisolithus, Scleroderma, and Tuber. There were pronounced differences in ECM fungal community structure among the 15 montados stands: C. geophilum was the only species common to all stands, tomentelloid and russuloid species were detected in 87-93% of the stands, Cortinariaceae was detected in 60% of the stands, and the other groups were more unequally distributed. Ordination analysis revealed that ECM fungal richness was positively correlated with the silvo-pastoral exploitation regime and low mortality of cork oak, while ECM fungal abundance was positively correlated with extensive

  16. Fungal rhinosinusitis: what every allergist should know.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Callejas, C A; Douglas, R G

    2013-08-01

    The interaction between fungi and the sinonasal tract results in a diverse range of diseases with an equally broad spectrum of clinical severity. The classification of these interactions has become complex, and this review seeks to rationalize and simplify the approach to fungal diseases of the nose and paranasal sinuses. These conditions may be discussed under two major headings: non-invasive disease (localized fungal colonization, fungal ball and allergic fungal rhinosinusitis) and invasive disease (acute invasive rhinosinusitis, chronic invasive rhinosinusitis and granulomatous invasive rhinosinusitis). A diagnosis of fungal rhinosinusitis is established by combining findings on history, clinical examination, laboratory testing, imaging and histopathology. The immunocompetence of the patient is of great importance, as invasive fungal rhinosinusitis is uncommon in immunocompetent patients. With the exception of localized fungal colonization, treatment of all forms of fungal rhinosinusitis relies heavily on surgery. Systemic antifungal agents are a fundamental component in the treatment of invasive forms, but are not indicated for the treatment of the non-invasive forms. Antifungal drugs may have a role as adjuvant therapy in allergic fungal rhinosinusitis, but evidence is poor to support recommendations. Randomized controlled trials need to be performed to confirm the benefit of immunotherapy in the treatment of allergic fungal rhinosinusitis. In this article, we will summarize the current literature, addressing the controversies regarding the diagnosis and management of fungal rhinosinusitis, and focussing on those aspects which are important for clinical immunologists and allergists.

  17. Effects of ocean acidification on calcification of symbiont-bearing reef foraminifers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Fujita

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Ocean acidification (decreases in carbonate ion concentration and pH in response to rising atmospheric pCO2 is generally expected to reduce rates of calcification by reef calcifying organisms, with potentially severe implications for coral reef ecosystems. Large, algal symbiont-bearing benthic foraminifers, which are important primary and carbonate producers in coral reefs, produce high-Mg calcite shells, whose solubility can exceed that of aragonite produced by corals, making them the "first responder" in coral reefs to the decreasing carbonate saturation state of seawater. Here we report results of culture experiments performed to assess the effects of ongoing ocean acidification on the calcification of symbiont-bearing reef foraminifers using a high-precision pCO2 control system. Living clone individuals of three foraminiferal species (Baculogypsina sphaerulata, Calcarina gaudichaudii, and Amphisorus hemprichii were subjected to seawater at five pCO2 levels from 260 to 970 μatm. Cultured individuals were maintained for about 12 weeks in an indoor flow-through system under constant water temperature, light intensity, and photoperiod. After the experiments, the shell diameter and weight of each cultured specimen were measured. Net calcification of B. sphaerulata and C. gaudichaudii, which secrete a hyaline shell and host diatom symbionts, increased under intermediate levels of pCO2 (580 and/or 770 μatm and decreased at a higher pCO2 level (970 μatm. Net calcification of A. hemprichii, which secretes a porcelaneous shell and hosts dinoflagellate symbionts, tended to decrease at elevated pCO2. Observed different responses between hyaline and porcelaneous species are possibly caused by the relative importance of elevated pCO2, which induces CO2 fertilization effects by

  18. A novel extracellular gut symbiont in the marine worm Priapulus caudatus (Priapulida) reveals an alphaproteobacterial symbiont clade of the Ecdysozoa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kroer, Paul; Kjeldsen, Kasper Urup; Nyengaard, Jens Randel

    2016-01-01

    Priapulus caudatus (phylum Priapulida) is a benthic marine predatory worm with a cosmopolitan distribution. In its digestive tract we detected symbiotic bacteria that were consistently present in specimens collected over eight years from three sites at the Swedish west coast. Based on their 16S r......RNA gene sequence, these symbionts comprise a novel genus of the order Rickettsiales (Alphaproteobacteria). Electron microscopy and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) identified them as extracellular, elongate bacteria closely associated with the microvilli, for which we propose the name ‘Candidatus...

  19. Fungal keratitis in Lattice dystrophy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chatterjee Samrat

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available We report a case of fungal keratitis occurring in a patient with lattice dystrophy. A 57-year-old farmer presented with a corneal ulcer following probable entry of paddy husk in the right eye, of one month duration. Corneal scraping revealed pigmented fungal filaments while culture grew Alternaria alternata. Treatment with 5% natamycin eye drops and 1% atropine healed the infection in four weeks. We would like to draw attention to the fact that the cornea in lattice dystrophy is prone to frequent erosions and is a compromised epithelial barrier to invasion by microorganisms. Patients must be made aware of this fact and should seek attention at the earliest following any trivial trauma. Management of minor corneal abrasions in them should be directed at healing the epithelium with adequate lubricants and preventing infection with topical antibiotic prophylaxis.

  20. Structural aspects of fungal allergens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crameri, Reto

    2015-03-01

    Despite the increasing number of solved crystal structures of allergens, the key question why some proteins are allergenic and the vast majority is not remains unanswered. The situation is not different for fungal allergens which cover a wide variety of proteins with different chemical properties and biological functions. They cover enzymes, cell wall, secreted, and intracellular proteins which, except cross-reactive allergens, does not show any evidence for structural similarities at least at the three-dimensional level. However, from a diagnostic point of view, pure allergens biotechnologically produced by recombinant technology can provide us, in contrast to fungal extracts which are hardly producible as standardized reagents, with highly pure perfectly standardized diagnostic reagents.

  1. Fungal metabolites with anticancer activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evidente, Antonio; Kornienko, Alexander; Cimmino, Alessio; Andolfi, Anna; Lefranc, Florence; Mathieu, Véronique; Kiss, Robert

    2014-05-01

    Covering: 1964 to 2013. Natural products from bacteria and plants have played a leading role in cancer drug discovery resulting in a large number of clinically useful agents. In contrast, the investigations of fungal metabolites and their derivatives have not led to a clinical cancer drug in spite of significant research efforts revealing a large number of fungi-derived natural products with promising anticancer activity. Many of these natural products have displayed notable in vitro growth-inhibitory properties in human cancer cell lines and select compounds have been demonstrated to provide therapeutic benefits in mouse models of human cancer. Many of these compounds are expected to enter human clinical trials in the near future. The present review discusses the reported sources, structures and biochemical studies aimed at the elucidation of the anticancer potential of these promising fungal metabolites.

  2. Nattrassia mangiferae causing fungal keratitis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kindo A

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available We report a case of fungal keratitis caused by the coelomycetous fungus Nattrassia mangiferae in a 70 year old gentleman, agriculturist by occupation, with a history of injury to his right eye. The scraping showed narrow septate fungal hyphae on a KOH mount, isolation of a fast growing black mould, which demonstrated hyphae and arthroconidia of varying widths typical of the Scytalidium synanamorph (S. dimidiatum. The formation of the pycnidia, which at maturity, expressed conidia. The patient was started on topical itraconazole one hourly and topical atropine thrice a day. The patient was lost to follow up hence we are not able to comment on the final outcome of the patient.

  3. Loss of genes related to Nucleotide Excision Repair (NER) and implications for reductive genome evolution in symbionts of deep-sea vesicomyid clams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimamura, Shigeru; Kaneko, Takashi; Ozawa, Genki; Matsumoto, Mamiko Nishino; Koshiishi, Takeru; Takaki, Yoshihiro; Kato, Chiaki; Takai, Ken; Yoshida, Takao; Fujikura, Katsunori; Barry, James P.

    2017-01-01

    Intracellular thioautotrophic symbionts of deep-sea vesicomyid clams lack some DNA repair genes and are thought to be undergoing reductive genome evolution (RGE). In this study, we addressed two questions, 1) how these symbionts lost their DNA repair genes and 2) how such losses affect RGE. For the first question, we examined genes associated with nucleotide excision repair (NER; uvrA, uvrB, uvrC, uvrD, uvrD paralog [uvrDp] and mfd) in 12 symbionts of vesicomyid clams belonging to two clades (5 clade I and 7 clade II symbionts). While uvrA, uvrDp and mfd were conserved in all symbionts, uvrB and uvrC were degraded in all clade I symbionts but were apparently intact in clade II symbionts. UvrD was disrupted in two clade II symbionts. Among the intact genes in Ca. Vesicomyosocius okutanii (clade I), expressions of uvrD and mfd were detected by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), but those of uvrA and uvrDp were not. In contrast, all intact genes were expressed in the symbiont of Calyptogena pacifica (clade II). To assess how gene losses affect RGE (question 2), genetic distances of the examined genes in symbionts from Bathymodiolus septemdierum were shown to be larger in clade I than clade II symbionts. In addition, these genes had lower guanine+cytosine (GC) content and higher repeat sequence densities in clade I than measured in clade II. Our results suggest that NER genes are currently being lost from the extant lineages of vesicomyid clam symbionts. The loss of NER genes and mutY in these symbionts is likely to promote increases in genetic distance and repeat sequence density as well as reduced GC content in genomic genes, and may have facilitated reductive evolution of the genome. PMID:28199404

  4. Do the costs and benefits of fungal endophyte symbiosis vary with light availability?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davitt, Andrew J; Stansberry, Marcus; Rudgers, Jennifer A

    2010-11-01

    • Here, we examined whether fungal endophytes modulated host plant responses to light availability. First, we conducted a literature review to evaluate whether natural frequencies of endophyte symbiosis in grasses from shaded habitats were higher than frequencies in grasses occupying more diverse light environments. Then, in a glasshouse experiment, we assessed how four levels of light and the presence of endophyte symbioses affected the growth of six grass species. • In our literature survey, endophytes were more commonly present in grasses restricted to shaded habitats than in grasses from diverse light environments. • In the glasshouse, endophyte symbioses did not mediate plant growth in response to light availability. However, in the host grass, Agrostis perennans, symbiotic plants produced 53% more inflorescences than nonsymbiotic plants at the highest level of shade. In addition, under high shade, symbiotic Poa autumnalis invested more in specific leaf area than symbiont-free plants. Finally, shade increased the density of the endophyte in leaf tissues across all six grass species. • Our results highlight the potential for symbiosis to alter the plasticity of host physiological traits, demonstrate a novel benefit of endophyte symbiosis under shade stress for one host species, and show a positive association between shade-restricted grass species and fungal endophytes.

  5. Fungal endophytes of aquatic macrophytes: diverse host-generalists characterized by tissue preferences and geographic structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandberg, Dustin C; Battista, Lorna J; Arnold, A Elizabeth

    2014-05-01

    Most studies of endophytic symbionts have focused on terrestrial plants, neglecting the ecologically and economically important plants present in aquatic ecosystems. We evaluated the diversity, composition, host and tissue affiliations, and geographic structure of fungal endophytes associated with common aquatic plants in lentic waters in northern Arizona, USA. Endophytes were isolated in culture from roots and photosynthetic tissues during two growing seasons. A total of 226 isolates representing 60 putative species was recovered from 9,600 plant tissue segments. Although isolation frequency was low, endophytes were phylogenetically diverse and species-rich. Comparisons among the most thoroughly sampled species and reservoirs revealed that isolation frequency and diversity did not differ significantly between collection periods, among species, among reservoirs, or as a function of depth. However, community structure differed significantly among reservoirs and tissue types. Phylogenetic analyses of a focal genus (Penicillium) corroborated estimates of species boundaries and informed community analyses, highlighting clade- and genotype-level affiliations of aquatic endophytes with both sediment- and waterborne fungi, and endophytes of proximate terrestrial plants. Together these analyses provide a first quantitative examination of endophytic associations in roots and foliage of aquatic plants and can be used to optimize survey strategies for efficiently capturing fungal biodiversity at local and regional scales.

  6. Transcriptomic immune response of the cotton stainer Dysdercus fasciatus to experimental elimination of vitamin-supplementing intestinal symbionts.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eugen Bauer

    Full Text Available The acquisition and vertical transmission of bacterial symbionts plays an important role in insect evolution and ecology. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying the stable maintenance and control of mutualistic bacteria remain poorly understood. The cotton stainer Dysdercus fasciatus harbours the actinobacterial symbionts Coriobacterium glomerans and Gordonibacter sp. in its midgut. The symbionts supplement limiting B vitamins and thereby significantly contribute to the host's fitness. In this study, we experimentally disrupted the symbionts' vertical transmission route and performed comparative transcriptomic analyses of genes expressed in the gut of aposymbiotic (symbiont-free and control individuals to study the host immune response in presence and absence of the mutualists. Annotation of assembled cDNA reads identified a considerable number of genes involved in the innate immune system, including different protein isoforms of several immune effector proteins (specifically i-type lysozyme, defensin, hemiptericin, and pyrrhocoricin, suggesting the possibility for a highly differentiated response towards the complex resident microbial community. Gene expression analyses revealed a constitutive expression of transcripts involved in signal transduction of the main insect immune pathways, but differential expression of certain antimicrobial peptide genes. Specifically, qPCRs confirmed the significant down-regulation of c-type lysozyme and up-regulation of hemiptericin in aposymbiotic individuals. The high expression of c-type lysozyme in symbiont-containing bugs may serve to lyse symbiont cells and thereby harvest B-vitamins that are necessary for subsistence on the deficient diet of Malvales seeds. Our findings suggest a sophisticated host response to perturbation of the symbiotic gut microbiota, indicating that the innate immune system not only plays an important role in combating pathogens, but also serves as a communication interface

  7. Fungal contaminants in cytopathology specimens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Prashant Sharma

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available A pseudo-epidemic of environmental fungi, most likely by Fusarium spp., leading to inappropriate investigations for disseminated systemic mycosis is described. Subtle diagnostic clues, including the specimens affected, the nature of the host response, and the type of fungal elements noted helped to determine the nature of contaminants. The potential pitfall can be avoided by the knowledge of pertinent disease biology, prompt consultation for infectious diseases, and investigations of the potential environmental sources followed by source control.

  8. A novel plant-fungal mutualism associated with fire.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baynes, Melissa; Newcombe, George; Dixon, Linley; Castlebury, Lisa; O'Donnell, Kerry

    2012-01-01

    Bromus tectorum, or cheatgrass, is native to Eurasia and widely invasive in western North America. By late spring, this annual plant has dispersed its seed and died; its aboveground biomass then becomes fine fuel that burns as frequently as once every 3-5 y in its invaded range. Cheatgrass has proven to be better adapted to fire there than many competing plants, but the contribution of its fungal symbionts to this adaptation had not previously been studied. In sampling cheatgrass endophytes, many fire-associated fungi were found, including Morchella in three western states (New Mexico, Idaho, and Washington). In greenhouse experiments, a New Mexico isolate of Morchella increased both the biomass and fecundity of its local cheatgrass population, thus simultaneously increasing both the probability of fire and survival of that event, via more fuel and a greater, belowground seed bank, respectively. Re-isolation efforts proved that Morchella could infect cheatgrass roots in a non-mycorrhizal manner and then grow up into aboveground tissues. The same Morchella isolate also increased survival of seed exposed to heat typical of that which develops in the seed bank during a cheatgrass fire. Phylogenetic analysis of Eurasian and North American Morchella revealed that this fire-associated mutualism was evolutionarily novel, in that cheatgrass isolates belonged to two phylogenetically distinct species, or phylotypes, designated Mel-6 and Mel-12 whose evolutionary origin appears to be within western North America. Mutualisms with fire-associated fungi may be contributing to the cheatgrass invasion of western North America. Copyright © 2011 British Mycological Society. All rights reserved.

  9. Systems biology of fungal infection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabian eHorn

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Elucidation of pathogenicity mechanisms of the most important human pathogenic fungi, Aspergillus fumigatus and Candida albicans, has gained great interest in the light of the steadily increasing number of cases of invasive fungal infections.A key feature of these infections is the interaction of the different fungal morphotypes with epithelial and immune effector cells in the human host. Because of the high level of complexity, it is necessary to describe and understand invasive fungal infection by taking a systems biological approach, i.e., by a comprehensive quantitative analysis of the non-linear and selective interactions of a large number of functionally diverse, and frequently multifunctional, sets of elements, e.g., genes, proteins, metabolites, which produce coherent and emergent behaviours in time and space. The recent advances in systems biology will now make it possible to uncover the structure and dynamics of molecular and cellular cause-effect relationships within these pathogenic interactions.We review current efforts to integrate omics and image-based data of host-pathogen interactions into network and spatio-temporal models. The modelling will help to elucidate pathogenicity mechanisms and to identify diagnostic biomarkers and potential drug targets for therapy and could thus pave the way for novel intervention strategies based on novel antifungal drugs and cell therapy.

  10. Fungal genome resources at NCBI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robbertse, B; Tatusova, T

    2011-09-01

    The National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) is well known for the nucleotide sequence archive, GenBank and sequence analysis tool BLAST. However, NCBI integrates many types of biomolecular data from variety of sources and makes it available to the scientific community as interactive web resources as well as organized releases of bulk data. These tools are available to explore and compare fungal genomes. Searching all databases with Fungi [organism] at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/ is the quickest way to find resources of interest with fungal entries. Some tools though are resources specific and can be indirectly accessed from a particular database in the Entrez system. These include graphical viewers and comparative analysis tools such as TaxPlot, TaxMap and UniGene DDD (found via UniGene Homepage). Gene and BioProject pages also serve as portals to external data such as community annotation websites, BioGrid and UniProt. There are many different ways of accessing genomic data at NCBI. Depending on the focus and goal of research projects or the level of interest, a user would select a particular route for accessing genomic databases and resources. This review article describes methods of accessing fungal genome data and provides examples that illustrate the use of analysis tools.

  11. Location of Symbionts in the Whitefly Bemisia tabaci Affects Their Densities during Host Development and Environmental Stress

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Qi; Xie, Wen; Wang, Shaoli; Wu, Qingjun; Ghanim, Murad; Zhang, Youjun

    2014-01-01

    Bacterial symbionts often enhance the physiological capabilities of their arthropod hosts and enable their hosts to expand into formerly unavailable niches, thus leading to biological diversification. Many arthropods, including the worldwide invasive whitefly Bemisia tabaci, have individuals simultaneously infected with symbionts of multiple genera that occur in different locations in the host. This study examined the population dynamics of symbionts that are located in different areas within B. tabaci. While densities of Portiera and Hamiltonella (which are located in bacteriocytes) appeared to be well-regulated during host development, densities of Rickettsia (which are not located in bacteriocytes) were highly variable among individual hosts during host development. Host mating did not significantly affect symbiont densities. Infection by Tomato yellow leaf curl virus did not affect Portiera and Hamiltonella densities in either sex, but increased Rickettsia densities in females. High and low temperatures did not affect Portiera and Hamiltonella densities, but low temperature (15°C) significantly suppressed Rickettsia densities whereas high temperature (35°C) had little effect on Rickettsia densities. The results are consistent with the view that the population dynamics of bacterial symbionts in B. tabaci are regulated by symbiont location within the host and that the regulation reflects adaptation between the bacteria and insect. PMID:24632746

  12. Anthropogenic perturbation of coral reef environments near Natal, Brazil: Clues from symbiont-bearing benthic foraminifera

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eichler, P.; Vital, H.; Sen Gupta, B. K.

    2014-12-01

    Besides global stressors such as temperature rise and acidification, local anthropogenic disturbances, especially those connected with tourism, affect many Atlantic patch reefs off the Brazilian shore. Using reef-inhabiting foraminifera with algal symbionts as environmental indicators, we confirmed this problem in coastal reefs near Natal, Rio Grande do Norte. The foraminiferal community is particularly depauperate in the small reefs of Pirangi, about 25 km south of Natal (~6o S, water depth tourism. However, living Amphistegina is still rare, and the only living Amphisorus is found in seagrass habitats. In contrast, many symbiont-bearing taxa, including peneroplids (virtually absent in Pirangi and Maracajaú) exist in sizeable populations northwest of Maracajaú, in the small patch reefs of the drowned Açu river valley (~4o 50' S).

  13. Insect symbiont facilitates vector acquisition, retention, and transmission of plant virus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Qi; Pan, Huipeng; Liu, Baiming; Chu, Dong; Xie, Wen; Wu, Qingjun; Wang, Shaoli; Xu, Baoyun; Zhang, Youjun

    2013-01-01

    Tomato yellow leaf curl virus (TYLCV) was first detected in China in 2006, following the introduction of Bemisia tabaci Q into China in 2003. Since then, the incidence of TYLCV in tomato fields in China has greatly increased as has the abundance and distribution of Q whiteflies containing the bacterial symbiont Hamiltonella with high frequency. This suggested that the symbiont Hamiltonella might associate with the transmission efficiency of TYLCV by the whitefly vector. Here we report the first evidence that the Hamiltonella is closely associated with the acquisition, retention, and transmission efficiency of TYLCV by the whitefly vector. Our findings combined with the outbreaks of TYLCV following the introduction of Q, provided an explanation for why Hamiltonella is being maintained at a relatively high level in Chinese B. tabaci Q and also have implications for disease and vector management. PMID:23455639

  14. Allergen Immunotherapy in an HIV+ Patient with Allergic Fungal Rhinosinusitis

    OpenAIRE

    2015-01-01

    Patients with HIV/AIDS can present with multiple types of fungal rhinosinusitis, fungal balls, granulomatous invasive fungal rhinosinusitis, acute or chronic invasive fungal rhinosinusitis, or allergic fungal rhinosinusitis (AFRS). Given the variable spectrum of immune status and susceptibility to severe infection from opportunistic pathogens it is extremely important that clinicians distinguish aggressive fungal invasive fungal disease from the much milder forms such as AFRS. Here we descr...

  15. Phylogenetic Distribution of Fungal Sterols

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weete, John D.; Abril, Maritza; Blackwell, Meredith

    2010-01-01

    Background Ergosterol has been considered the “fungal sterol” for almost 125 years; however, additional sterol data superimposed on a recent molecular phylogeny of kingdom Fungi reveals a different and more complex situation. Methodology/Principal Findings The interpretation of sterol distribution data in a modern phylogenetic context indicates that there is a clear trend from cholesterol and other Δ5 sterols in the earliest diverging fungal species to ergosterol in later diverging fungi. There are, however, deviations from this pattern in certain clades. Sterols of the diverse zoosporic and zygosporic forms exhibit structural diversity with cholesterol and 24-ethyl -Δ5 sterols in zoosporic taxa, and 24-methyl sterols in zygosporic fungi. For example, each of the three monophyletic lineages of zygosporic fungi has distinctive major sterols, ergosterol in Mucorales, 22-dihydroergosterol in Dimargaritales, Harpellales, and Kickxellales (DHK clade), and 24-methyl cholesterol in Entomophthorales. Other departures from ergosterol as the dominant sterol include: 24-ethyl cholesterol in Glomeromycota, 24-ethyl cholest-7-enol and 24-ethyl-cholesta-7,24(28)-dienol in rust fungi, brassicasterol in Taphrinales and hypogeous pezizalean species, and cholesterol in Pneumocystis. Conclusions/Significance Five dominant end products of sterol biosynthesis (cholesterol, ergosterol, 24-methyl cholesterol, 24-ethyl cholesterol, brassicasterol), and intermediates in the formation of 24-ethyl cholesterol, are major sterols in 175 species of Fungi. Although most fungi in the most speciose clades have ergosterol as a major sterol, sterols are more varied than currently understood, and their distribution supports certain clades of Fungi in current fungal phylogenies. In addition to the intellectual importance of understanding evolution of sterol synthesis in fungi, there is practical importance because certain antifungal drugs (e.g., azoles) target reactions in the synthesis of

  16. Phylogenetic distribution of fungal sterols.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John D Weete

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Ergosterol has been considered the "fungal sterol" for almost 125 years; however, additional sterol data superimposed on a recent molecular phylogeny of kingdom Fungi reveals a different and more complex situation. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The interpretation of sterol distribution data in a modern phylogenetic context indicates that there is a clear trend from cholesterol and other Delta(5 sterols in the earliest diverging fungal species to ergosterol in later diverging fungi. There are, however, deviations from this pattern in certain clades. Sterols of the diverse zoosporic and zygosporic forms exhibit structural diversity with cholesterol and 24-ethyl -Delta(5 sterols in zoosporic taxa, and 24-methyl sterols in zygosporic fungi. For example, each of the three monophyletic lineages of zygosporic fungi has distinctive major sterols, ergosterol in Mucorales, 22-dihydroergosterol in Dimargaritales, Harpellales, and Kickxellales (DHK clade, and 24-methyl cholesterol in Entomophthorales. Other departures from ergosterol as the dominant sterol include: 24-ethyl cholesterol in Glomeromycota, 24-ethyl cholest-7-enol and 24-ethyl-cholesta-7,24(28-dienol in rust fungi, brassicasterol in Taphrinales and hypogeous pezizalean species, and cholesterol in Pneumocystis. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Five dominant end products of sterol biosynthesis (cholesterol, ergosterol, 24-methyl cholesterol, 24-ethyl cholesterol, brassicasterol, and intermediates in the formation of 24-ethyl cholesterol, are major sterols in 175 species of Fungi. Although most fungi in the most speciose clades have ergosterol as a major sterol, sterols are more varied than currently understood, and their distribution supports certain clades of Fungi in current fungal phylogenies. In addition to the intellectual importance of understanding evolution of sterol synthesis in fungi, there is practical importance because certain antifungal drugs (e.g., azoles target reactions in

  17. TonB-dependent heme iron acquisition in the tsetse fly symbiont Sodalis glossinidius.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hrusa, Gili; Farmer, William; Weiss, Brian L; Applebaum, Taylor; Roma, Jose Santinni; Szeto, Lauren; Aksoy, Serap; Runyen-Janecky, Laura J

    2015-04-01

    Sodalis glossinidius is an intra- and extracellular symbiont of the tsetse fly (Glossina sp.), which feeds exclusively on vertebrate blood. S. glossinidius resides in a wide variety of tsetse tissues and may encounter environments that differ dramatically in iron content. The Sodalis chromosome encodes a putative TonB-dependent outer membrane heme transporter (HemR) and a putative periplasmic/inner membrane ABC heme permease system (HemTUV). Because these gene products mediate iron acquisition processes by other enteric bacteria, we characterized their regulation and physiological role in the Sodalis/tsetse system. Our results show that the hemR and tonB genes are expressed by S. glossinidius in the tsetse fly. Furthermore, transcription of hemR in Sodalis is repressed in a high-iron environment by the iron-responsive transcriptional regulator Fur. Expression of the S. glossinidius hemR and hemTUV genes in an Escherichia coli strain unable to use heme as an iron source stimulated growth in the presence of heme or hemoglobin as the sole iron source. This stimulation was dependent on the presence of either the E. coli or Sodalis tonB gene. Sodalis tonB and hemR mutant strains were defective in their ability to colonize the gut of tsetse flies that lacked endogenous symbionts, while wild-type S. glossinidius proliferated in this same environment. Finally, we show that the Sodalis HemR protein is localized to the bacterial membrane and appears to bind hemin. Collectively, this study provides strong evidence that TonB-dependent, HemR-mediated iron acquisition is important for the maintenance of symbiont homeostasis in the tsetse fly, and it provides evidence for the expression of bacterial high-affinity iron acquisition genes in insect symbionts. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  18. The distribution of intra-genomically variable dinoflagellate symbionts at Lord Howe Island, Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkinson, Shaun P.; Pontasch, Stefanie; Fisher, Paul L.; Davy, Simon K.

    2016-06-01

    The symbiotic dinoflagellates of corals and other marine invertebrates ( Symbiodinium) are essential to the development of shallow-water coral reefs. This genus contains considerable genetic diversity and a corresponding range of physiological and ecological traits. Most genetic variation arises through the accumulation of somatic mutations that arise during asexual reproduction. Yet growing evidence suggests that occasional sexual reproductive events also occur within, and perhaps between, Symbiodinium lineages, further contributing to the pool of genetic variation available for evolutionary adaptation. Intra-genomic variation can therefore arise from both sexual and asexual reproductive processes, making it difficult to discern its underlying causes and consequences. We used quantitative PCR targeting the ITS2 locus to estimate proportions of genetically homogeneous symbionts and intra-genomically variable Symbiodinium (IGV Symbiodinium) in the reef-building coral Pocillopora damicornis at Lord Howe Island, Australia. We then sampled colonies through time and at a variety of spatial scales to find out whether the distribution of these symbionts followed patterns consistent with niche partitioning. Estimated ratios of homogeneous to IGV Symbiodinium varied between colonies within sites (metres to tens of metres) and between sites separated by hundreds to thousands of metres, but remained stable within colonies through time. Symbiont ratios followed a temperature gradient, with the local thermal maximum emerging as a negative predictor for the estimated proportional abundance of IGV Symbiodinium. While this pattern may result from fine-scale spatial population structure, it is consistent with an increased susceptibility to thermal stress, suggesting that the evolutionary processes that generate IGV (such as inter-lineage recombination and the accumulation of somatic mutations at the ITS2 locus) may have important implications for the fitness of the symbiont and

  19. Host-symbiont relationships in hydrothermal vent gastropods of the genus Alviniconcha from the Southwest Pacific.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Yohey; Kojima, Shigeaki; Sasaki, Takenori; Suzuki, Masae; Utsumi, Takashi; Watanabe, Hiromi; Urakawa, Hidetoshi; Tsuchida, Shinji; Nunoura, Takuro; Hirayama, Hisako; Takai, Ken; Nealson, Kenneth H; Horikoshi, Koki

    2006-02-01

    Hydrothermal vent gastropods of the genus Alviniconcha are unique among metazoans in their ability to derive their nutrition from chemoautotrophic gamma- and epsilon-proteobacterial endosymbionts. Although host-symbiont relationships in Alviniconcha gastropods from the Central Indian Ridge in the Indian Ocean and the Mariana Trough in the Western Pacific have been studied extensively, host-symbiont relationships in Alviniconcha gastropods from the Southwest Pacific remain largely unknown. Phylogenetic analysis using mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I gene sequences of host gastropods from the Manus, North Fiji, and Lau Back-Arc Basins in the Southwest Pacific has revealed a new host lineage in a Alviniconcha gastropod from the Lau Basin and the occurrence of the host lineage Alviniconcha sp. type 2 in the Manus Basin. Based on 16S rRNA gene sequences of bacterial endosymbionts, two gamma-proteobacterial lineages and one epsilon-proteobacterial lineage were identified in the present study. The carbon isotopic compositions of the biomass and fatty acids of the gastropod tissues suggest that the gamma- and epsilon-proteobacterial endosymbionts mediate the Calvin-Benson cycle and the reductive tricarboxylic acid cycle, respectively, for their chemoautotrophic growth. Coupling of the host and symbiont lineages from the three Southwest Pacific basins revealed that each of the Alviniconcha lineages harbors different bacterial endosymbionts belonging to either the gamma- or epsilon-Proteobacteria. The host specificity exhibited in symbiont selection provides support for the recognition of each of the host lineages as a distinct species. The results from the present study also suggest the possibility that Alviniconcha sp. types 1 and 2 separately inhabit hydrothermal vent sites approximately 120 m apart in the North Fiji Basin and 500 m apart in the Manus Basin.

  20. Pyrosequencing of bacterial symbionts within Axinella corrugata sponges: diversity and seasonal variability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James R White

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Marine sponge species are of significant interest to many scientific fields including marine ecology, conservation biology, genetics, host-microbe symbiosis and pharmacology. One of the most intriguing aspects of the sponge "holobiont" system is the unique physiology, interaction with microbes from the marine environment and the development of a complex commensal microbial community. However, intraspecific variability and temporal stability of sponge-associated bacterial symbionts remain relatively unknown. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We have characterized the bacterial symbiont community biodiversity of seven different individuals of the Caribbean reef sponge Axinella corrugata, from two different Florida reef locations during variable seasons using multiplex 454 pyrosequencing of 16 S rRNA amplicons. Over 265,512 high-quality 16 S rRNA sequences were generated and analyzed. Utilizing versatile bioinformatics methods and analytical software such as the QIIME and CloVR packages, we have identified 9,444 distinct bacterial operational taxonomic units (OTUs. Approximately 65,550 rRNA sequences (24% could not be matched to bacteria at the class level, and may therefore represent novel taxa. Differentially abundant classes between seasonal Axinella communities included Gammaproteobacteria, Flavobacteria, Alphaproteobacteria, Cyanobacteria, Acidobacter and Nitrospira. Comparisons with a proximal outgroup sponge species (Amphimedon compressa, and the growing sponge symbiont literature, indicate that this study has identified approximately 330 A. corrugata-specific symbiotic OTUs, many of which are related to the sulfur-oxidizing Ectothiorhodospiraceae. This family appeared exclusively within A. corrugata, comprising >34.5% of all sequenced amplicons. Other A. corrugata symbionts such as Deltaproteobacteria, Bdellovibrio, and Thiocystis among many others are described. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Slight shifts in several bacterial taxa

  1. Genetic Diversity of Nostoc Symbionts Endophytically Associated with Two Bryophyte Species

    OpenAIRE

    Costa, José-Luis; Paulsrud, Per; Rikkinen, Jouko; Lindblad, Peter

    2001-01-01

    The diversity of the endophytic Nostoc symbionts of two thalloid bryophytes, the hornwort Anthoceros fusiformis and the liverwort Blasia pusilla, was examined using the tRNALeu (UAA) intron sequence as a marker. The results confirmed that many different Nostoc strains are involved in both associations under natural conditions in the field. The level of Nostoc diversity within individual bryophyte thalli varied, but single DNA fragments were consistently amplified from individual symbiotic col...

  2. Bacterial Endo-Symbiont Inhabiting Tridax procumbens L. and Their Antimicrobial Potential

    OpenAIRE

    Syed Baker; Kumara Shanthamma Kavitha; Huvinakola Chinnappa Yashavantha Rao; Devaraju Rakshith; Ballagere Puttaraju Harini; Komal Kumar; Sreedharamurthy Satish

    2015-01-01

    Bacterial symbionts inhabiting Tridax procumbens L. were screened for antimicrobial potential with the aim to isolate potent bacteria bearing significant activity against test pathogens. The selected isolate was subjected to large scale fermentation to extract antimicrobial metabolite. The organic phase was reduced under vacuum pressure and crude ethyl acetate extract (10 mg/mL) was evaluated for antimicrobial activity against panel of test pathogens. The antibacterial activity was measured a...

  3. A polyketide synthase-peptide synthetase gene cluster from an uncultured bacterial symbiont of Paederus beetles

    OpenAIRE

    Piel, Jörn

    2002-01-01

    Many drug candidates from marine and terrestrial invertebrates are suspected metabolites of uncultured bacterial symbionts. The antitumor polyketides of the pederin family, isolated from beetles and sponges, are an example. Drug development from such sources is commonly hampered by low yields and the difficulty of sustaining invertebrate cultures. To obtain insight into the true producer and find alternative supplies of these rare drug candidates, the putative pederin biosynthesis genes were ...

  4. A comparison of the community diversity of foliar fungal endophytes between seedling and adult loblolly pines (Pinus taeda).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oono, Ryoko; Lefèvre, Emilie; Simha, Anita; Lutzoni, François

    2015-10-01

    Fungal endophytes represent one of the most ubiquitous plant symbionts on Earth and are phylogenetically diverse. The structure and diversity of endophyte communities have been shown to depend on host taxa and climate, but there have been relatively few studies exploring endophyte communities throughout host maturity. We compared foliar fungal endophyte communities between seedlings and adult trees of loblolly pines (Pinus taeda) at the same seasons and locations by culturing and culture-independent methods. We sequenced the internal transcribed spacer region and adjacent partial large subunit nuclear ribosomal RNA gene (ITS-LSU amplicon) to delimit operational taxonomic units and phylogenetically characterize the communities. Despite the lower infection frequency in seedlings compared to adult trees, seedling needles were receptive to a more diverse community of fungal endophytes. Culture-free method confirmed the presence of commonly cultured OTUs from adult needles but revealed several new OTUs from seedling needles that were not found with culturing methods. The two most commonly cultured OTUs in adults were rarely cultured from seedlings, suggesting that host age is correlated with a selective enrichment for specific endophytes. This shift in endophyte species dominance may be indicative of a functional change between these fungi and their loblolly pine hosts.

  5. Relative importance of deterministic and stochastic processes in driving arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal assemblage during the spreading of a toxic plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Guoxi; Liu, Yongjun; Mao, Lin; Jiang, Shengjing; Zhang, Qi; Cheng, Gang; An, Lizhe; Du, Guozhen; Feng, Huyuan

    2014-01-01

    Both deterministic and stochastic processes are expected to drive the assemblages of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi, but little is known about the relative importance of these processes during the spreading of toxic plants. Here, the species composition and phylogenetic structure of AM fungal communities colonizing the roots of a toxic plant, Ligularia virgaurea, and its neighborhood plants, were analyzed in patches with different individual densities of L. virgaurea (represents the spreading degree). Community compositions of AM fungi in both root systems were changed significantly by the L. virgaurea spreading, and also these communities fitted the neutral model very well. AM fungal communities in patches with absence and presence of L. virgaurea were phylogenetically random and clustered, respectively, suggesting that the principal ecological process determining AM fungal assemblage shifted from stochastic process to environmental filtering when this toxic plant was present. Our results indicate that deterministic and stochastic processes together determine the assemblage of AM fungi, but the dominant process would be changed by the spreading of toxic plants, and suggest that the spreading of toxic plants in alpine meadow ecosystems might be involving the mycorrhizal symbionts.

  6. Relative importance of deterministic and stochastic processes in driving arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal assemblage during the spreading of a toxic plant.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guoxi Shi

    Full Text Available Both deterministic and stochastic processes are expected to drive the assemblages of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM fungi, but little is known about the relative importance of these processes during the spreading of toxic plants. Here, the species composition and phylogenetic structure of AM fungal communities colonizing the roots of a toxic plant, Ligularia virgaurea, and its neighborhood plants, were analyzed in patches with different individual densities of L. virgaurea (represents the spreading degree. Community compositions of AM fungi in both root systems were changed significantly by the L. virgaurea spreading, and also these communities fitted the neutral model very well. AM fungal communities in patches with absence and presence of L. virgaurea were phylogenetically random and clustered, respectively, suggesting that the principal ecological process determining AM fungal assemblage shifted from stochastic process to environmental filtering when this toxic plant was present. Our results indicate that deterministic and stochastic processes together determine the assemblage of AM fungi, but the dominant process would be changed by the spreading of toxic plants, and suggest that the spreading of toxic plants in alpine meadow ecosystems might be involving the mycorrhizal symbionts.

  7. Non-native acylated homoserine lactones reveal that LuxIR quorum sensing promotes symbiont stability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Studer, Sarah V; Schwartzman, Julia A; Ho, Jessica S; Geske, Grant D; Blackwell, Helen E; Ruby, Edward G

    2014-08-01

    Quorum sensing, a group behaviour coordinated by a diffusible pheromone signal and a cognate receptor, is typical of bacteria that form symbioses with plants and animals. LuxIR-type N-acyl L-homoserine (AHL) quorum sensing is common in Gram-negative Proteobacteria, and many members of this group have additional quorum-sensing networks. The bioluminescent symbiont Vibrio fischeri encodes two AHL signal synthases: AinS and LuxI. AinS-dependent quorum sensing converges with LuxI-dependent quorum sensing at the LuxR regulatory element. Both AinS- and LuxI-mediated signalling are required for efficient and persistent colonization of the squid host, Euprymna scolopes. The basis of the mutualism is symbiont bioluminescence, which is regulated by both LuxI- and AinS-dependent quorum sensing, and is essential for maintaining a colonization of the host. Here, we used chemical and genetic approaches to probe the dynamics of LuxI- and AinS-mediated regulation of bioluminescence during symbiosis. We demonstrate that both native AHLs and non-native AHL analogues can be used to non-invasively and specifically modulate induction of symbiotic bioluminescence via LuxI-dependent quorum sensing. Our data suggest that the first day of colonization, during which symbiont bioluminescence is induced by LuxIR, is a critical period that determines the stability of the V. fischeri population once symbiosis is established.

  8. Earthworm symbiont Verminephrobacter eiseniae mediates natural transformation within the host egg capsules using type IV pili

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SEANA Kelyn DAVIDSON

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The dense microbial communities commonly associated with plants and animals should offer many opportunities for horizontal gene transfer (HGT through described mechanisms of DNA exchange including natural transformation. However, studies of the significance of natural transformation have focused primarily on pathogens. The study presented here demonstrates highly efficient DNA exchange by natural transformation in a common symbiont of earthworms. The obligate bacterial symbiont Verminephrobacter eiseniae is a member of a microbial consortium of the earthworm Eisenia fetida that is transmitted into the egg capsules to colonize the embryonic worms. In the study presented here, by testing for transformants under different conditions in culture, we demonstrate that V. eiseniae can incorporate free DNA from the environment, that competency is regulated by environmental factors, and that it is sequence specific. Mutations in the type IV pili of V. eiseniae resulted in loss of DNA uptake, implicating the type IV pilus (TFP apparatus in DNA uptake. Furthermore, injection of DNA carrying antibiotic-resistance genes into egg capsules resulted in transformants within the capsule, demonstrating the relevance of DNA uptake within the earthworm system. The ability to take up species-specific DNA from the environment may explain the maintenance of the relatively large, intact genome of this long-associated obligate symbiont, and provides a mechanism for acquisition of foreign genes within the earthworm system.

  9. Exploring the Symbiodinium rare biosphere provides evidence for symbiont switching in reef-building corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boulotte, Nadine M; Dalton, Steven J; Carroll, Andrew G; Harrison, Peter L; Putnam, Hollie M; Peplow, Lesa M; van Oppen, Madeleine Jh

    2016-11-01

    Reef-building corals possess a range of acclimatisation and adaptation mechanisms to respond to seawater temperature increases. In some corals, thermal tolerance increases through community composition changes of their dinoflagellate endosymbionts (Symbiodinium spp.), but this mechanism is believed to be limited to the Symbiodinium types already present in the coral tissue acquired during early life stages. Compelling evidence for symbiont switching, that is, the acquisition of novel Symbiodinium types from the environment, by adult coral colonies, is currently lacking. Using deep sequencing analysis of Symbiodinium rDNA internal transcribed spacer 2 (ITS2) PCR amplicons from two pocilloporid coral species, we show evidence consistent with de novo acquisition of Symbiodinium types from the environment by adult corals following two consecutive bleaching events. Most of these newly detected symbionts remained in the rare biosphere (background types occurring below 1% relative abundance), but one novel type reached a relative abundance of ~33%. Two de novo acquired Symbiodinium types belong to the thermally resistant clade D, suggesting that this switching may have been driven by consecutive thermal bleaching events. Our results are particularly important given the maternal mode of Symbiodinium transmission in the study species, which generally results in high symbiont specificity. These findings will cause a paradigm shift in our understanding of coral-Symbiodinium symbiosis flexibility and mechanisms of environmental acclimatisation in corals.

  10. Bacterial symbionts in the hepatopancreas of isopods: diversity and environmental transmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yongjie; Brune, Andreas; Zimmer, Martin

    2007-07-01

    The midgut glands (hepatopancreas) of terrestrial isopods contain bacterial symbionts. We analysed the phylogenetic diversity of hepatopancreatic bacteria in isopod species from various suborders colonizing marine, semiterrestrial, terrestrial and freshwater habitats. Hepatopancreatic bacteria were absent in the marine isopod Idotea balthica (Valvifera). The symbiotic bacteria present in the midgut glands of the freshwater isopod Asellus aquaticus (Asellota) were closely related to members of the proteobacterial genera Rhodobacter, Burkholderia, Aeromonas or Rickettsiella, but differed markedly between populations. By contrast, species of the suborder Oniscidea were consistently colonized by the same phylotypes of hepatopancreatic bacteria. While symbionts in the semiterrestrial isopod Ligia oceanica (Oniscidea) were close relatives of Pseudomonas sp. (Gammaproteobacteria), individuals of the terrestrial isopod Oniscus asellus (Oniscidea) harboured either 'Candidatus Hepatoplasma crinochetorum' (Mollicutes) or 'Candidatus Hepatincola porcellionum' (Rickettsiales), previously described as symbionts of another terrestrial isopod, Porcellio scaber. These two uncultivated bacterial taxa were consistently present in each population of six and three different species of terrestrial isopods, respectively, collected in different geographical locations. However, infection rates of individuals within a population ranged between 10% and 100%, rendering vertical transmission unlikely. Rather, feeding experiments suggest that 'Candidatus Hepatoplasma crinochetorum' is environmentally transmitted to the progeny.

  11. Depth specialization in mesophotic corals (Leptoseris spp.) and associated algal symbionts in Hawai'i.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pochon, X; Forsman, Z H; Spalding, H L; Padilla-Gamiño, J L; Smith, C M; Gates, R D

    2015-02-01

    Corals at the lower limits of mesophotic habitats are likely to have unique photosynthetic adaptations that allow them to persist and dominate in these extreme low light ecosystems. We examined the host-symbiont relationships from the dominant coral genus Leptoseris in mesophotic environments from Hawai'i collected by submersibles across a depth gradient of 65-125 m. Coral and Symbiodinium genotypes were compared with three distinct molecular markers including coral (COX1-1-rRNA intron) and Symbiodinium (COI) mitochondrial markers and nuclear ITS2. The phylogenetic reconstruction clearly resolved five Leptoseris species, including one species (Leptoseris hawaiiensis) exclusively found in deeper habitats (115-125 m). The Symbiodinium mitochondrial marker resolved three unambiguous haplotypes in clade C, which were found at significantly different frequencies between host species and depths, with one haplotype exclusively found at the lower mesophotic extremes (95-125 m). These patterns of host-symbiont depth specialization indicate that there are limits to connectivity between upper and lower mesophotic zones, suggesting that niche specialization plays a critical role in host-symbiont evolution at mesophotic extremes.

  12. Impacts of Antibiotic and Bacteriophage Treatments on the Gut-Symbiont-Associated Blissus insularis (Hemiptera: Blissidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yao Xu

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The Southern chinch bug, Blissus insularis, possesses specialized midgut crypts that harbor dense populations of the exocellular symbiont Burkholderia. Oral administration of antibiotics suppressed the gut symbionts in B. insularis and negatively impacted insect host fitness, as reflected by retarded development, smaller body size, and higher susceptibility to an insecticide, bifenthrin. Considering that the antibiotics probably had non-lethal but toxic effects on host fitness, attempts were conducted to reduce gut symbionts using bacteriophage treatment. Soil-lytic phages active against the cultures of specific Burkholderia ribotypes were successfully isolated using a soil enrichment protocol. Characterization of the BiBurk16MC_R phage determined its specificity to the Bi16MC_R_vitro ribotype and placed it within the family Podoviridae. Oral administration of phages to fifth-instar B. insularis, inoculated with Bi16MC_R_vitro as neonates had no deleterious effects on host fitness. However, the ingested phages failed to impact the crypt-associated Burkholderia. The observed inactivity of the phage was likely due to the blockage of the connection between the anterior and posterior midgut regions. These findings suggest that the initial colonization by Burkholderia programs the ontogeny of the midgut, providing a sheltered residence protected from microbial antagonists.

  13. Gene expression in gut symbiotic organ of stinkbug affected by extracellular bacterial symbiont.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryo Futahashi

    Full Text Available The bean bug Riptortus pedestris possesses a specialized symbiotic organ in a posterior region of the midgut, where numerous crypts harbor extracellular betaproteobacterial symbionts of the genus Burkholderia. Second instar nymphs orally acquire the symbiont from the environment, and the symbiont infection benefits the host by facilitating growth and by occasionally conferring insecticide resistance. Here we performed comparative transcriptomic analyses of insect genes expressed in symbiotic and non-symbiotic regions of the midgut dissected from Burkholderia-infected and uninfected R. pedestris. Expression sequence tag analysis of cDNA libraries and quantitative reverse transcription PCR identified a number of insect genes expressed in symbiosis- or aposymbiosis-associated patterns. For example, genes up-regulated in symbiotic relative to aposymbiotic individuals, including many cysteine-rich secreted protein genes and many cathepsin protease genes, are likely to play a role in regulating the symbiosis. Conversely, genes up-regulated in aposymbiotic relative to symbiotic individuals, including a chicken-type lysozyme gene and a defensin-like protein gene, are possibly involved in regulation of non-symbiotic bacterial infections. Our study presents the first transcriptomic data on gut symbiotic organ of a stinkbug, which provides initial clues to understanding of molecular mechanisms underlying the insect-bacterium gut symbiosis and sheds light on several intriguing commonalities between endocellular and extracellular symbiotic associations.

  14. Beneficial effect of Verminephrobacter nephridial symbionts on the fitness of the earthworm Aporrectodea tuberculata

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Marie Braad; Holmstrup, Martin; Lomstein, Bente Aagaard

    2010-01-01

    , the symbionts have been hypothesized to enhance nitrogen retention in the earthworms. The effect of Verminephrobacter on the life-history traits of the earthworm Aporrectodea tuberculata (Eisen) was investigated by comparing growth, development, and fecundity of worms with and without symbionts, given high...... (cowdung) and low (straw) nutrient diets. There were no difference in worm growth and number of cocoons produced by symbiotic and aposymbiotic worms. Worms with Verminephrobacter symbionts reached sexual maturity earlier and had higher cocoon hatching success than worms cured from their symbionts when...... grown on the low nutrient diet. Thus, the Verminephrobacter nephridial symbionts do have a beneficial effect on their earthworm host. Cocoons with and without symbionts did not significantly differ in total organic carbon (TOC), total nitrogen (TN), or total hydrolysable amino acid (THAA) content, which...

  15. Invasive fungal infections after natural disasters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benedict, Kaitlin; Park, Benjamin J

    2014-03-01

    The link between natural disasters and subsequent fungal infections in disaster-affected persons has been increasingly recognized. Fungal respiratory conditions associated with disasters include coccidioidomycosis, and fungi are among several organisms that can cause near-drowning pneumonia. Wound contamination with organic matter can lead to post-disaster skin and soft tissue fungal infections, notably mucormycosis. The role of climate change in the environmental growth, distribution, and dispersal mechanisms of pathogenic fungi is not fully understood; however, ongoing climate change could lead to increased disaster-associated fungal infections. Fungal infections are an often-overlooked clinical and public health issue, and increased awareness by health care providers, public health professionals, and community members regarding disaster-associated fungal infections is needed.

  16. Conjugating effects of symbionts and environmental factors on gene expression in deep-sea hydrothermal vent mussels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Corre Erwan

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The deep-sea hydrothermal vent mussel Bathymodiolus azoricus harbors thiotrophic and methanotrophic symbiotic bacteria in its gills. While the symbiotic relationship between this hydrothermal mussel and these chemoautotrophic bacteria has been described, the molecular processes involved in the cross-talking between symbionts and host, in the maintenance of the symbiois, in the influence of environmental parameters on gene expression, and in transcriptome variation across individuals remain poorly understood. In an attempt to understand how, and to what extent, this double symbiosis affects host gene expression, we used a transcriptomic approach to identify genes potentially regulated by symbiont characteristics, environmental conditions or both. This study was done on mussels from two contrasting populations. Results Subtractive libraries allowed the identification of about 1000 genes putatively regulated by symbiosis and/or environmental factors. Microarray analysis showed that 120 genes (3.5% of all genes were differentially expressed between the Menez Gwen (MG and Rainbow (Rb vent fields. The total number of regulated genes in mussels harboring a high versus a low symbiont content did not differ significantly. With regard to the impact of symbiont content, only 1% of all genes were regulated by thiotrophic (SOX and methanotrophic (MOX bacteria content in MG mussels whereas 5.6% were regulated in mussels collected at Rb. MOX symbionts also impacted a higher proportion of genes than SOX in both vent fields. When host transcriptome expression was analyzed with respect to symbiont gene expression, it was related to symbiont quantity in each field. Conclusions Our study has produced a preliminary description of a transcriptomic response in a hydrothermal vent mussel host of both thiotrophic and methanotrophic symbiotic bacteria. This model can help to identify genes involved in the maintenance of symbiosis or regulated by

  17. Prevalence and clinical profile of fungal rhinosinusitis

    OpenAIRE

    2016-01-01

    Background: There are only a few landmark studies from the Indian subcontinent on fungal rhinosinusitis. The lack of awareness among clinicians regarding the varying clinical presentations of fungal rhinosinusitis prompted us to undertake this study. Objective: To determine the prevalence, etiologic basis, clinical features, radiologic features, and microscopic features of fungal rhinosinusitis, and to evaluate the various treatment modalities available. Methods: This was a prospective study ...

  18. Reconstructing fungal natural product biosynthetic pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lazarus, C M; Williams, K; Bailey, A M

    2014-10-01

    Large scale fungal genome sequencing has revealed a multitude of potential natural product biosynthetic pathways that remain uncharted. Here we describe some of the methods that have been used to explore them via heterologous gene expression. We focus on filamentous fungal hosts and discuss the technological challenges and successes behind the reconstruction of fungal natural product pathways. Optimised, efficient heterologous expression of reconstructed biosynthetic pathways promises progress in the discovery of novel compounds that could be utilised by the pharmaceutical and agrochemical industries.

  19. Phylogenetic relationships of chemoautotrophic bacterial symbionts of Solemya velum say (Mollusca: Bivalvia) determined by 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis.

    OpenAIRE

    Eisen, J. A.; Smith, S W; Cavanaugh, Colleen Marie

    1992-01-01

    The protobranch bivalve Solemya velum Say (Mollusca: Bivalvia) houses chemoautotrophic symbionts intracellularly within its gills. These symbionts were characterized through sequencing of polymerase chain reaction-amplified 16S rRNA coding regions and hybridization of an Escherichia coli gene probe to S. velum genomic DNA restriction fragments. The symbionts appeared to have only one copy of the 16S rRNA gene. The lack of variability in the 16S sequence and hybridization patterns within and b...

  20. Comparative Profiling of coral symbiont communities from the Caribbean, Indo-Pacific, and Arabian Seas

    KAUST Repository

    Arif, Chatchanit

    2014-12-01

    Coral reef ecosystems are in rapid decline due to global and local anthropogenic factors. Being among the most diverse ecosystems on Earth, a loss will decrease species diversity, and remove food source for people along the coast. The coral together with its symbionts (i.e. Symbiodinium, bacteria, and other microorganisms) is called the ‘coral holobiont’. The coral host offers its associated symbionts suitable habitats and nutrients, while Symbiodinium and coral-associated bacteria provide the host with photosynthates and vital nutrients. Association of corals with certain types of Symbiodinium and bacteria confer coral stress tolerance, and lack or loss of these symbionts coincides with diseased or bleached corals. However, a detailed understanding of the coral holobiont diversity and structure in regard to diseases and health states or across global scales is missing. This dissertation addressed coral-associated symbiont diversity, specifically of Symbiodinium and bacteria, in various coral species from different geographic locations and different health states. The main aims were (1) to expand the scope of existing technologies, (2) to establish a standardized framework to facilitate comparison of symbiont assemblages over coral species and sites, (3) to assess Symbiodinium diversity in the Arabian Seas, and (4) to elucidate whether coral health states have conserved bacterial footprints. In summary, a next generation sequencing pipeline for Symbiodinium diversity typing of the ITS2 marker is developed and applied to describe Symbiodinium diversity in corals around the Arabian Peninsula. The data show that corals in the Arabian Seas are dominated by a single Symbiodinium type, but harbor a rich variety of types in low abundant. Further, association with different Symbiodinium types is structured according to geographic locations. In addition, the application of 16S rRNA gene microarrays to investigate how differences in microbiome structure relate to

  1. A journey into the wild of the cnidarian model system Aiptasia and its symbionts

    KAUST Repository

    Voolstra, Christian R.

    2013-08-27

    The existence of coral reef ecosystems relies critically on the mutualistic relationship between calcifying cnidarians and photosynthetic, dinoflagellate endosymbionts in the genus Symbiodinium. Reef-corals have declined globally due to anthropogenic stressors, for example, rising sea-surface temperatures and pollution that often disrupt these symbiotic relationships (known as coral bleaching), exacerbating mass mortality and the spread of disease. This threatens one of the most biodiverse marine ecosystems providing habitats to millions of species and supporting an estimated 500 million people globally (Hoegh-Guldberg et al. 2007). Our understanding of cnidarian-dinoflagellate symbioses has improved notably with the recent application of genomic and transcriptomic tools (e.g. Voolstra et al. 2009; Bayer et al. 2012; Davy et al. 2012), but a model system that allows for easy manipulation in a laboratory environment is needed to decipher underlying cellular mechanisms important to the functioning of these symbioses. To this end, the sea anemone Aiptasia, otherwise known as a \\'pest\\' to aquarium hobbyists, is emerging as such a model system (Schoenberg & Trench 1980; Sunagawa et al. 2009; Lehnert et al. 2012). Aiptasia is easy to grow in culture and, in contrast to its stony relatives, can be maintained aposymbiotically (i.e. dinoflagellate free) with regular feeding. However, we lack basic information on the natural distribution and genetic diversity of these anemones and their endosymbiotic dinoflagellates. These data are essential for placing the significance of this model system into an ecological context. In this issue of Molecular Ecology, Thornhill et al. (2013) are the first to present genetic evidence on the global distribution, diversity and population structure of Aiptasia and its associated Symbiodinium spp. By integrating analyses of the host and symbiont, this research concludes that the current Aitpasia taxonomy probably needs revision and that two

  2. In vitro EVALUATION OF EUCALYPTUS ECTOMYCORRHIZAE ON SUBSTRATE WITH PHOSPHORUS DOSES FOR FUNGAL PRE-SELECTION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lidiomar Soares Costa

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The benefit promoted by ectomycorrhizal depends on the interaction between symbionts and phosphorus (P contents. Phosphorus effect on ectomycorrhizal formation and the effectiveness of these in promoting plant growth for fungal pre-selection were assessed under in vitro conditions. For P effect evaluation, Eucalyptus urophylla seedlings inoculated with four Pisolithus sp. isolates and others non-inoculated were grown on substrate containing 0.87, 1.16 and 1.72 mg P per plant. For evaluation of effectiveness and fungal pre-selection, other 30 isolates of Pisolithus sp., Pisolithus microcarpus ITA06 isolate, Amanita muscaria AM16 isolate, Scleroderma areolatum SC129 isolate were studied. D26 isolate promoted the highest plant heights for the three P doses, D51 at the lower dose and D72 at the intermediate dose. P doses did not influenced shoot fresh weight and fungal colonization. In the pre-selection of fungi, 14 isolates of Pisolithus sp., P. microcarpus ITA06 isolate and S. areolatum SC129isolate increased plant height and fresh weight. D82 isolate of Pisolithus sp. had effect singly on plant height while D17 and D58 on fresh weight. Of these, only D15, D17, D58 and ITA06 had typical ectomycorrhizae. The cultivation in vitro has shown adequate for pre-selection of ectomycorrhizal fungi. Colonization and benefits depend on species and isolate. D15, D17 and D58 of Pisolithus sp. and P. microcarpus isolate ITA06 are the most promising for nursery studies.

  3. Fungal Endocarditis: Update on Diagnosis and Management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pasha, Ahmed Khurshid; Lee, Justin Z; Low, See-Wei; Desai, Hem; Lee, Kwan S; Al Mohajer, Mayar

    2016-10-01

    Fungal endocarditis is an extremely debilitating disease associated with high morbidity and mortality. Candida spp. are the most common isolated organisms in fungal endocarditis. It is most prevalent in patients who are immunosuppressed and intravenous drug users. Most patients present with constitutional symptoms, which are indistinguishable from bacterial endocarditis, hence a high index of suspicion is required for pursuing diagnosis. Diagnosis of fungal endocarditis can be very challenging: most of the time, blood cultures are negative or take a long time to yield growth. Fungal endocarditis mandates an aggressive treatment strategy. A medical and surgical combined approach is the cornerstone of therapy. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. 5.5.Fungal disease

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    1993-01-01

    930234 Penicilliosis marneffei report of a caseand review of literatures.KANG Xiaoming (康晓明),et al.Nanjing Army General Hosp,210002.Chin J Tuberc & Respir Dis 1992;15(6):336—338.Penicilliosis marneffei is a rare deep fungal in-fection.Southeast Asia is the endemic area.Inthe literatures before 1990,29 cases were re-ported and most of them were diagnosed patho-logically from autopsy.Since 1989 there havebeen more reports of P.marneffei in the HIV in-fected individuals or graft recipient,so far as

  5. Immune response to fungal infections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blanco, Jose L; Garcia, Marta E

    2008-09-15

    The immune mechanisms of defence against fungal infections are numerous, and range from protective mechanisms that were present early in evolution (innate immunity) to sophisticated adaptive mechanisms that are induced specifically during infection and disease (adaptive immunity). The first-line innate mechanism is the presence of physical barriers in the form of skin and mucous membranes, which is complemented by cell membranes, cellular receptors and humoral factors. There has been a debate about the relative contribution of humoral and cellular immunity to host defence against fungal infections. For a long time it was considered that cell-mediated immunity (CMI) was important, but humoral immunity had little or no role. However, it is accepted now that CMI is the main mechanism of defence, but that certain types of antibody response are protective. In general, Th1-type CMI is required for clearance of a fungal infection, while Th2 immunity usually results in susceptibility to infection. Aspergillosis, which is a disease caused by the fungus Aspergillus, has been the subject of many studies, including details of the immune response. Attempts to relate aspergillosis to some form of immunosuppression in animals, as is the case with humans, have not been successful to date. The defence against Aspergillus is based on recognition of the pathogen, a rapidly deployed and highly effective innate effector phase, and a delayed but robust adaptive effector phase. Candida albicans, part of the normal microbial flora associated with mucous surfaces, can be present as congenital candidiasis or as acquired defects of cell-mediated immunity. Resistance to this yeast is associated with Th1 CMI, whereas Th2 immunity is associated with susceptibility to systemic infection. Dermatophytes produce skin alterations in humans and other animals, and the essential role of the CMI response is to destroy the fungi and produce an immunoprotective status against re-infection. The resolution

  6. Diagnosis of invasive fungal infections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Maria Barbui

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available A proper diagnostic strategy of invasive fungal infections (IFI is a very important component in the management of infectious complications in hematological patients. A good diagnostic approach should be adapted to the patient in relation to the underlying disease, stage of disease, localization of infection and immune status. None of the diagnostic markers can be entirely adopted for medical decision making, and sometimes it’s useful to use the combination of several microbiological tests.The diagnosis of IFI must therefore have a multidisciplinary approach that includes clinical suspicion, microbiological results and radiological evidence.

  7. Infectious speciation revisited: impact of symbiont-depletion on female fitness and mating behavior of Drosophila paulistorum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wolfgang J Miller

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available The neotropical Drosophila paulistorum superspecies, consisting of at least six geographically overlapping but reproductively isolated semispecies, has been the object of extensive research since at least 1955, when it was initially trapped mid-evolution in flagrant statu nascendi. In this classic system females express strong premating isolation patterns against mates belonging to any other semispecies, and yet uncharacterized microbial reproductive tract symbionts were described triggering hybrid inviability and male sterility. Based on theoretical models and limited experimental data, prime candidates fostering symbiont-driven speciation in arthropods are intracellular bacteria belonging to the genus Wolbachia. They are maternally inherited symbionts of many arthropods capable of manipulating host reproductive biology for their own benefits. However, it is an ongoing debate as to whether or not reproductive symbionts are capable of driving host speciation in nature and if so, to what extent. Here we have reevaluated this classic case of infectious speciation by means of present day molecular approaches and artificial symbiont depletion experiments. We have isolated the α-proteobacteria Wolbachia as the maternally transmitted core endosymbionts of all D. paulistorum semispecies that have coevolved towards obligate mutualism with their respective native hosts. In hybrids, however, these mutualists transform into pathogens by overreplication causing embryonic inviability and male sterility. We show that experimental reduction in native Wolbachia titer causes alterations in sex ratio, fecundity, and mate discrimination. Our results indicate that formerly designated Mycoplasma-like organisms are most likely Wolbachia that have evolved by becoming essential mutualistic symbionts in their respective natural hosts; they have the potential to trigger pre- and postmating isolation. Furthermore, in light of our new findings, we revisit the concept of

  8. Optimal Fungal Space Searching Algorithms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asenova, Elitsa; Lin, Hsin-Yu; Fu, Eileen; Nicolau, Dan V; Nicolau, Dan V

    2016-10-01

    Previous experiments have shown that fungi use an efficient natural algorithm for searching the space available for their growth in micro-confined networks, e.g., mazes. This natural "master" algorithm, which comprises two "slave" sub-algorithms, i.e., collision-induced branching and directional memory, has been shown to be more efficient than alternatives, with one, or the other, or both sub-algorithms turned off. In contrast, the present contribution compares the performance of the fungal natural algorithm against several standard artificial homologues. It was found that the space-searching fungal algorithm consistently outperforms uninformed algorithms, such as Depth-First-Search (DFS). Furthermore, while the natural algorithm is inferior to informed ones, such as A*, this under-performance does not importantly increase with the increase of the size of the maze. These findings suggest that a systematic effort of harvesting the natural space searching algorithms used by microorganisms is warranted and possibly overdue. These natural algorithms, if efficient, can be reverse-engineered for graph and tree search strategies.

  9. Fungal infections of the orbit

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bipasha Mukherjee

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Fungal infections of the orbit can lead to grave complications. Although the primary site of inoculation of the infective organism is frequently the sinuses, the patients can initially present to the ophthalmologist with ocular signs and symptoms. Due to its varied and nonspecific clinical features, especially in the early stages, patients are frequently misdiagnosed and even treated with steroids which worsen the situation leading to dire consequences. Ophthalmologists should be familiar with the clinical spectrum of disease and the variable presentation of this infection, as early diagnosis and rapid institution of appropriate therapy are crucial elements in the management of this invasive sino-orbital infection. In this review, relevant clinical, microbiological, and imaging findings are discussed along with the current consensus on local and systemic management. We review the recent literature and provide a comprehensive analysis. In the immunocompromised, as well as in healthy patients, a high index of suspicion must be maintained as delay in diagnosis of fungal pathology may lead to disfiguring morbidity or even mortality. Obtaining adequate diagnostic material for pathological and microbiological examination is critical. Newer methods of therapy, particularly oral voriconazole and topical amphotericin B, may be beneficial in selected patients.

  10. A novel class of fungal lipoxygenases

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heshof, R.; Jylhä, S.; Haarmann, T.; Jørgensen, A.L.W.; Dalsgaard, T.K.; Graaff, de L.H.

    2014-01-01

    Lipoxygenases (LOXs) are well-studied enzymes in plants and mammals. However, fungal LOXs are less studied. In this study, we have compared fungal LOX protein sequences to all known characterized LOXs. For this, a script was written using Shell commands to extract sequences from the NCBI database an

  11. Unexpected co-occurrence of six bacterial symbionts in the gills of the cold seep mussel Idas sp. (Bivalvia: Mytilidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duperron, Sébastien; Halary, Sébastien; Lorion, Julien; Sibuet, Myriam; Gaill, Françoise

    2008-02-01

    Bathymodioline mussels occur in chemosynthesis-based ecosystems such as cold seeps, hydrothermal vents and organic debris worldwide. Their key adaptation to these environments is their association with bacterial endosymbionts which ensure a chemosynthetic primary production based on the oxidation of reduced compounds such as methane and sulfide. We herein report a multiple symbiosis involving six distinct bacterial 16S rRNA phylotypes, including two belonging to groups not yet reported as symbionts in mytilids, in a small Idas mussel found on carbonate crusts in a cold seep area located north to the Nile deep-sea fan (Eastern Mediterranean). Symbionts co-occur within hosts bacteriocytes based on fluorescence in situ hybridizations, and sequencing of functional genes suggests they have the potential to perform autotrophy, and sulfide and methane oxidation. Previous studies indicated the presence of only one or two symbiont 16S rRNA phylotypes in bathymodioline mussels. Together with the recent discovery of four bacterial symbionts in the large seep species Bathymodiolus heckerae, this study shows that symbiont diversity has probably been underestimated, and questions whether the common ancestor of bathymodioline mussels was associated with multiple bacteria.

  12. Allergic fungal sinusitis causing nasolacrimal duct obstruction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Charles; Kacker, Ashutosh; Chee, Ru-Ik; Lelli, Gary J

    2013-04-01

    Allergic fungal sinusitis is thought to represent a chronic autoimmune reaction directed against fungal elements within the sinuses, and is commonly seen in individuals with a history of chronic sinusitis that is refractory to medical therapy. The authors present a case of allergic fungal sinusitis involving the lacrimal drainage system. A 54-year-old woman initially presented with recurrent erythema and induration of the left nasolacrimal sac due to dacryocystitis, which was unresponsive to treatment with topical and systemic antibiotics. Radiological evaluation demonstrated the presence of multiple soft tissue masses along the medial canthi. During subsequent endoscopic dacryocystorhinostomy, significant amounts of allergic mucin were found within the sinuses and marked eosinophilia was present within tissue obtained from the lacrimal sac, findings highly suggestive of allergic fungal sinusitis. A diagnosis of allergic fungal sinusitis should be considered in patients presenting with epiphora in the appropriate clinical context. However, involvement of the lacrimal drainage system is an exceedingly unusual presentation.

  13. Histone Acetylation in Fungal Pathogens of Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Junhyun Jeon

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Acetylation of histone lysine residues occurs in different organisms ranging from yeast to plants and mammals for the regulation of diverse cellular processes. With the identification of enzymes that create or reverse this modification, our understanding on histone acetylation has expanded at an amazing pace during the last two decades. In fungal pathogens of plants, however, the importance of such modification has only just begun to be appreciated in the recent years and there is a dearth of information on how histone acetylation is implicated in fungal pathogenesis. This review covers the current status of research related to histone acetylation in plant pathogenic fungi and considers relevant findings in the interaction between fungal pathogens and host plants. We first describe the families of histone acetyltransferases and deacetylases. Then we provide the cases where histone acetylation was investigated in the context of fungal pathogenesis. Finally, future directions and perspectives in epigenetics of fungal pathogenesis are discussed.

  14. Soil fungal community responses to global changes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Haugwitz, Merian Skouw

    Global change will affect the functioning and structure of terrestrial ecosystems and since soil fungi are key players in organic matter decomposition and nutrient turnover, shifts in fungal community composition might have a strong impact on soil functioning. The main focus of this thesis...... and nutrient availability and storage. By combining molecular methods such as 454 pyrosequencing and quantitative PCR of fungal ITS amplicons with analyses of soil enzymes, nutrient pools of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus we were able to characterize soil fungal communities as well as their impact on nutrient...... was therefore to investigate the impact of global environmental changes on soil fungal communities in a temperate and subartic heath ecosystem. The objective was further to determine global change effects on major functional groups of fungi and analyze the influence of fungal community changes on soil carbon...

  15. Molecular evidence for Lessepsian invasion of soritids (larger symbiont bearing benthic foraminifera.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gily Merkado

    Full Text Available The Mediterranean Sea is considered as one of the hotspots of marine bioinvasions, largely due to the influx of tropical species migrating through the Suez Canal, so-called Lessepsian migrants. Several cases of Lessepsian migration have been documented recently, however, little is known about the ecological characteristics of the migrating species and their aptitude to colonize the new areas. This study focused on Red Sea soritids, larger symbiont-bearing benthic foraminifera (LBF that are indicative of tropical and subtropical environments and were recently found in the Israeli coast of the Eastern Mediterranean. We combined molecular phylogenetic analyses of soritids and their algal symbionts as well as network analysis of Sorites orbiculus Forskål to compare populations from the Gulf of Elat (northern Red Sea and from a known hotspot in Shikmona (northern Israel that consists of a single population of S. orbiculus. Our phylogenetic analyses show that all specimens found in Shikmona are genetically identical to a population of S. orbiculus living on a similar shallow water pebbles habitat in the Gulf of Elat. Our analyses also show that the symbionts found in Shikmona and Elat soritids belong to the Symbiodinium clade F5, which is common in the Red Sea and also present in the Indian Ocean and Caribbean Sea. Our study therefore provides the first genetic and ecological evidences that indicate that modern population of soritids found on the Mediterranean coast of Israel is probably Lessepsian, and is less likely the descendant of a native ancient Mediterranean species.

  16. Dark production of extracellular superoxide by the coral Porites astreoides and representative symbionts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tong Zhang

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The reactive oxygen species (ROS superoxide has been implicated in both beneficial and detrimental processes in coral biology, ranging from pathogenic disease resistance to coral bleaching. Despite the critical role of ROS in coral health, there is a distinct lack of ROS measurements and thus an incomplete understanding of underpinning ROS sources and production mechanisms within coral systems. Here, we quantified in situ extracellular superoxide concentrations at the surfaces of aquaria-hosted Porites astreoides during a diel cycle. High concentrations of superoxide (~10’s of nM were present at coral surfaces, and these levels did not change significantly as a function of time of day. These results indicate that the coral holobiont produces extracellular superoxide in the dark, independent of photosynthesis. As a short-lived anion at physiological pH, superoxide has a limited ability to cross intact biological membranes. Further, removing surface mucus layers from the P. astreoides colonies did not impact external superoxide concentrations. We therefore attribute external superoxide derived from the coral holobiont under these conditions to the activity of the coral host epithelium, rather than mucus-derived epibionts or internal sources such as endosymbionts (e.g., Symbiodinium. However, endosymbionts likely contribute to internal ROS levels via extracellular superoxide production. Indeed, common coral symbionts, including multiple strains of Symbiodinium (clades A to D and the bacterium Endozoicomonas montiporae LMG 24815, produced extracellular superoxide in the dark and at low light levels. Further, representative P. astreoides symbionts, Symbiodinium CCMP2456 (clade A and E. montiporae, produced similar concentrations of superoxide alone and in combination with each other, in the dark and low light, and regardless of time of day. Overall, these results indicate that healthy, non-stressed P. astreoides and representative symbionts produce

  17. Environmental factors shape the community of symbionts in the hoopoe uropygial gland more than genetic factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz-Rodríguez, Magdalena; Soler, Juan J; Martín-Vivaldi, Manuel; Martín-Platero, Antonio M; Méndez, María; Peralta-Sánchez, Juan M; Ananou, Samir; Valdivia, Eva; Martínez-Bueno, Manuel

    2014-11-01

    Exploring processes of coevolution of microorganisms and their hosts is a new imperative for life sciences. If bacteria protect hosts against pathogens, mechanisms facilitating the intergenerational transmission of such bacteria will be strongly selected by evolution. By disentangling the diversity of bacterial strains from the uropygium of hoopoes (Upupa epops) due to genetic relatedness or to a common environment, we explored the importance of horizontal (from the environment) and vertical (from parents) acquisition of antimicrobial-producing symbionts in this species. For this purpose, we compared bacterial communities among individuals in nonmanipulated nests; we also performed a cross-fostering experiment using recently hatched nestlings before uropygial gland development and some nestlings that were reared outside hoopoe nests. The capacity of individuals to acquire microbial symbionts horizontally during their development was supported by our results, since cross-fostered nestlings share bacterial strains with foster siblings and nestlings that were not in contact with hoopoe adults or nests also developed the symbiosis. Moreover, nestlings could change some bacterial strains over the course of their stay in the nest, and adult females changed their bacterial community in different years. However, a low rate of vertical transmission was inferred, since genetic siblings reared in different nests shared more bacterial strains than they shared with unrelated nestlings raised in different nests. In conclusion, hoopoes are able to incorporate new symbionts from the environment during the development of the uropygium, which could be a selective advantage if strains with higher antimicrobial capacity are incorporated into the gland and could aid hosts in fighting against pathogenic and disease-causing microbes.

  18. Environmental Factors Shape the Community of Symbionts in the Hoopoe Uropygial Gland More than Genetic Factors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soler, Juan J.; Martín-Vivaldi, Manuel; Martín-Platero, Antonio M.; Méndez, María; Peralta-Sánchez, Juan M.; Ananou, Samir; Valdivia, Eva; Martínez-Bueno, Manuel

    2014-01-01

    Exploring processes of coevolution of microorganisms and their hosts is a new imperative for life sciences. If bacteria protect hosts against pathogens, mechanisms facilitating the intergenerational transmission of such bacteria will be strongly selected by evolution. By disentangling the diversity of bacterial strains from the uropygium of hoopoes (Upupa epops) due to genetic relatedness or to a common environment, we explored the importance of horizontal (from the environment) and vertical (from parents) acquisition of antimicrobial-producing symbionts in this species. For this purpose, we compared bacterial communities among individuals in nonmanipulated nests; we also performed a cross-fostering experiment using recently hatched nestlings before uropygial gland development and some nestlings that were reared outside hoopoe nests. The capacity of individuals to acquire microbial symbionts horizontally during their development was supported by our results, since cross-fostered nestlings share bacterial strains with foster siblings and nestlings that were not in contact with hoopoe adults or nests also developed the symbiosis. Moreover, nestlings could change some bacterial strains over the course of their stay in the nest, and adult females changed their bacterial community in different years. However, a low rate of vertical transmission was inferred, since genetic siblings reared in different nests shared more bacterial strains than they shared with unrelated nestlings raised in different nests. In conclusion, hoopoes are able to incorporate new symbionts from the environment during the development of the uropygium, which could be a selective advantage if strains with higher antimicrobial capacity are incorporated into the gland and could aid hosts in fighting against pathogenic and disease-causing microbes. PMID:25172851

  19. Fungal farmers or algal escorts: lichen adaptation from the algal perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piercey-Normore, Michele D; Deduke, Christopher

    2011-09-01

    Domestication of algae by lichen-forming fungi describes the symbiotic relationship between the photosynthetic (green alga or cyanobacterium; photobiont) and fungal (mycobiont) partnership in lichen associations (Goward 1992). The algal domestication implies that the mycobiont cultivates the alga as a monoculture within its thallus, analogous to a farmer cultivating a food crop. However, the initial photobiont 'selection' by the mycobiont may be predetermined by the habitat rather than by the farmer. When the mycobiont selects a photobiont from the available photobionts within a habitat, the mycobiont may influence photobiont growth and reproduction (Ahmadjian & Jacobs 1981) only after the interaction has been initiated. The theory of ecological guilds (Rikkinen et al. 2002) proposes that habitat limits the variety of photobionts available to the fungal partner. While some studies provide evidence to support the theory of ecological guilds in cyanobacterial lichens (Rikkinen et al. 2002), other studies propose models to explain variation in symbiont combinations in green algal lichens (Ohmura et al. 2006; Piercey-Normore 2006; Yahr et al. 2006) hypothesizing the existence of such guilds. In this issue of Molecular Ecology, Peksa & Škaloud (2011) test the theory of ecological guilds and suggest a relationship between algal habitat requirements and lichen adaptation in green algal lichens of the genus Lepraria. The environmental parameters examined in this study, exposure to rainfall, altitude and substratum type, are integral to lichen biology. Lichens have a poikilohydric nature, relying on the availability of atmospheric moisture for metabolic processes. Having no known active mechanism to preserve metabolic thallus moisture in times of drought, one would expect a strong influence of the environment on symbiont adaptation to specific habitats. Adaptation to changes in substrata and its properties would be expected with the intimate contact between crustose

  20. Lack of Overt Genome Reduction in the Bryostatin-Producing Bryozoan Symbiont "Candidatus Endobugula sertula".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Ian J; Vanee, Niti; Fong, Stephen S; Lim-Fong, Grace E; Kwan, Jason C

    2016-11-15

    The uncultured bacterial symbiont "Candidatus Endobugula sertula" is known to produce cytotoxic compounds called bryostatins, which protect the larvae of its host, Bugula neritina The symbiont has never been successfully cultured, and it was thought that its genome might be significantly reduced. Here, we took a shotgun metagenomics and metatranscriptomics approach to assemble and characterize the genome of "Ca Endobugula sertula." We found that it had specific metabolic deficiencies in the biosynthesis of certain amino acids but few other signs of genome degradation, such as small size, abundant pseudogenes, and low coding density. We also identified homologs to genes associated with insect pathogenesis in other gammaproteobacteria, and these genes may be involved in host-symbiont interactions and vertical transmission. Metatranscriptomics revealed that these genes were highly expressed in a reproductive host, along with bry genes for the biosynthesis of bryostatins. We identified two new putative bry genes fragmented from the main bry operon, accounting for previously missing enzymatic functions in the pathway. We also determined that a gene previously assigned to the pathway, bryS, is not expressed in reproductive tissue, suggesting that it is not involved in the production of bryostatins. Our findings suggest that "Ca Endobugula sertula" may be able to live outside the host if its metabolic deficiencies are alleviated by medium components, which is consistent with recent findings that it may be possible for "Ca Endobugula sertula" to be transmitted horizontally. The bryostatins are potent protein kinase C activators that have been evaluated in clinical trials for a number of indications, including cancer and Alzheimer's disease. There is, therefore, considerable interest in securing a renewable supply of these compounds, which is currently only possible through aquaculture of Bugula neritina and total chemical synthesis. However, these approaches are labor

  1. Chapter 8: Invasive fungal rhinosinusitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duggal, Praveen; Wise, Sarah K

    2013-01-01

    Invasive fungal rhinosinusitis (IFRS) is a disease of the paranasal sinuses and nasal cavity that typically affects immunocompromised patients in the acute fulminant form. Early symptoms can often mimic rhinosinusitis, while late symptoms can cause significant morbidity and mortality. Swelling and mucosal thickening can quickly progress to pale or necrotic tissue in the nasal cavity and sinuses, and the disease can rapidly spread and invade the palate, orbit, cavernous sinus, cranial nerves, skull base, carotid artery, and brain. IFRS can be life threatening if left undiagnosed or untreated. While the acute fulminant form of IFRS is the most rapidly progressive and destructive, granulomatous and chronic forms also exist. Diagnosis of IFRS often mandates imaging studies in conjunction with clinical, endoscopic, and histopathological examination. Treatment of IFRS consists of reversing the underlying immunosuppression, antifungal therapy, and aggressive surgical debridement. With early diagnosis and treatment, IFRS can be treated and increase patient survival.

  2. Scabies, lice, and fungal infections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taplin, D; Meinking, T L

    1989-09-01

    Scabies and pediculosis capitis are frequent and often unrecognized causes of multiple streptococcal and staphylococcal pyodermas. Permethrin 1 per cent creme rinse (NIX) for head lice, and permethrin 5 per cent topical cream for scabies are new, highly effective, safe, and cosmetically elegant treatments which have shown superiority over older remedies. In populations in which pediculosis and scabies have resisted traditional lindane therapy, patients promptly responded to these permethrin products. Scabies in nursing homes is a persistent and expanding problem which demands a high level of diagnostic suspicion and an integrated approach to management. For fungal infections, several new broad-spectrum oral and topical agents have been introduced. Their successful use is enhanced by appropriate diagnostic tests which can be performed in the office setting. Recommendations and references are given to assist the physician in diagnosis and choice of therapy.

  3. Innate Defense against Fungal Pathogens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drummond, Rebecca A; Gaffen, Sarah L; Hise, Amy G; Brown, Gordon D

    2014-11-10

    Human fungal infections have been on the rise in recent years and proved increasingly difficult to treat as a result of the lack of diagnostics, effective antifungal therapies, and vaccines. Most pathogenic fungi do not cause disease unless there is a disturbance in immune homeostasis, which can be caused by modern medical interventions, disease-induced immunosuppression, and naturally occurring human mutations. The innate immune system is well equipped to recognize and destroy pathogenic fungi through specialized cells expressing a broad range of pattern recognition receptors (PRRs). This review will outline the cells and PRRs required for effective antifungal immunity, with a special focus on the major antifungal cytokine IL-17 and recently characterized antifungal inflammasomes.

  4. In situ photobiology of corals over large depth ranges: A multivariate analysis on the roles of environment, host, and algal symbiont

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Frade, P.R.; Bongaerts, P.; Winkelhagen, A.J.S.; Tonk, L.; Bak, R.P.M.

    2008-01-01

    We applied a multivariate analysis to investigate the roles of host and symbiont on the in situ physiological response of genus Madracis holobionts towards light. Across a large depth gradient (5-40 m) and for four Madracis species and three symbiont genotypes, we assessed several variables by

  5. Draft Genome Sequence of Rhizobium mesoamericanum STM3625, a Nitrogen-Fixing Symbiont of Mimosa pudica Isolated in French Guiana (South America).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moulin, Lionel; Mornico, Damien; Melkonian, Rémy; Klonowska, Agnieszka

    2013-01-01

    Rhizobium mesoamericanum STM3625 is a Mimosa pudica symbiont isolated in French Guiana. This strain serves as a model bacterium for comparison of adaptation to mutualism (symbiotic traits, bacterial genetic programs for plant infection) between alpha and beta rhizobial symbionts of Mimosa pudica.

  6. The pink shrimp Farfantepenaeus duorarum, its symbionts and helminths as bioindicators of chemical pollution in Campeche Sound, Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vidal-Martínez, V M; Aguirre-Macedo, M L; Del Rio-Rodríguez, R; Gold-Bouchot, G; Rendón-von Osten, J; Miranda-Rosas, G A

    2006-06-01

    The pink shrimp Farfantepenaeus duorarum may acquire pollutants, helminths and symbionts from their environment. Statistical associations were studied between the symbionts and helminths of F. duorarum and pollutants in sediments, water and shrimps in Campeche Sound, Mexico. The study area spatially overlapped between offshore oil platforms and natural shrimp mating grounds. Spatial autocorrelation of data was controlled with spatial analysis using distance indices (SADIE) which identifies parasite or pollutant patches (high levels) and gaps (low levels), expressing them as clustering indices compared at each point to produce a measure of spatial association. Symbionts included the peritrich ciliates Epistylis sp. and Zoothamnium penaei and all symbionts were pooled. Helminths included Hysterothylacium sp., Opecoeloides fimbriatus, Prochristianella penaei and an unidentified cestode. Thirty-five pollutants were identified, including polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), pesticides and heavy metals. The PAHs (2-3 ring) in water, unresolved complex mixture (UCM), Ni and V in sediments, and Zn, Cr and heptachlor in shrimps were significantly clustered. The remaining pollutants were randomly distributed in the study area. Juvenile shrimps acquired pesticides, PAHs (2-3 rings) and Zn, while adults acquired PAHs (4-5 rings), Cu and V. Results suggest natural PAH spillovers, and continental runoff of dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT), PCBs and PAHs (2-3 ring). There were no significant associations between pollutants and helminths. However, there were significant negative associations of pesticides, UCM and PCBs with symbiont numbers after controlling shrimp size and spatial autocorrelation. Shrimps and their symbionts appear to be promising bioindicators of organic chemical pollution in Campeche Sound.

  7. A novel class of fungal lipoxygenases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heshof, Ruud; Jylhä, Sirpa; Haarmann, Thomas; Jørgensen, Ann Louise Worsøe; Dalsgaard, Trine Kastrup; de Graaff, Leo H

    2014-02-01

    Lipoxygenases (LOXs) are well-studied enzymes in plants and mammals. However, fungal LOXs are less studied. In this study, we have compared fungal LOX protein sequences to all known characterized LOXs. For this, a script was written using Shell commands to extract sequences from the NCBI database and to align the sequences obtained using Multiple Sequence Comparison by Log-Expectation. We constructed a phylogenetic tree with the use of Quicktree to visualize the relation of fungal LOXs towards other LOXs. These sequences were analyzed with respect to the signal sequence, C-terminal amino acid, the stereochemistry of the formed oxylipin, and the metal ion cofactor usage. This study shows fungal LOXs are divided into two groups, the Ile- and the Val-groups. The Ile-group has a conserved WRYAK sequence that appears to be characteristic for fungal LOXs and has as a C-terminal amino acid Ile. The Val-group has a highly conserved WL-L/F-AK sequence that is also found in LOXs of plant and animal origin. We found that fungal LOXs with this conserved sequence have a Val at the C-terminus in contrast to other LOXs of fungal origin. Also, these LOXs have signal sequences implying these LOXs will be expressed extracellularly. Our results show that in this group, in addition to the Gaeumannomyces graminis and the Magnaporthe salvinii LOXs, the Aspergillus fumigatus LOX uses manganese as a cofactor.

  8. Fungal genome sequencing: basic biology to biotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Krishna Kant

    2016-08-01

    The genome sequences provide a first glimpse into the genomic basis of the biological diversity of filamentous fungi and yeast. The genome sequence of the budding yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, with a small genome size, unicellular growth, and rich history of genetic and molecular analyses was a milestone of early genomics in the 1990s. The subsequent completion of fission yeast, Schizosaccharomyces pombe and genetic model, Neurospora crassa initiated a revolution in the genomics of the fungal kingdom. In due course of time, a substantial number of fungal genomes have been sequenced and publicly released, representing the widest sampling of genomes from any eukaryotic kingdom. An ambitious genome-sequencing program provides a wealth of data on metabolic diversity within the fungal kingdom, thereby enhancing research into medical science, agriculture science, ecology, bioremediation, bioenergy, and the biotechnology industry. Fungal genomics have higher potential to positively affect human health, environmental health, and the planet's stored energy. With a significant increase in sequenced fungal genomes, the known diversity of genes encoding organic acids, antibiotics, enzymes, and their pathways has increased exponentially. Currently, over a hundred fungal genome sequences are publicly available; however, no inclusive review has been published. This review is an initiative to address the significance of the fungal genome-sequencing program and provides the road map for basic and applied research.

  9. Isolated secondary fungal infections of pleural cavity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Makbule Ergin

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Objectives: Pleural fungal infections are rare, but the incidence has been increasing with immunosuppressant diseases and use of immunosuppressive medications. In this report, we present 6 patients with pleural effusions that have been determined fungal infection. Methods: The medical records of patients with followed and treated due to fungal infection of the pleural were retrospectively reviewed. Result: The 6 cases whom was 58 of the value median for age were treated as surgical and medical due to fungal infection of the pleural cavity. Dyspnea, cough and chest pain were the most common symptoms. Fever, night sweats and expectoration are relatively rare. In 4 patients, the infections of pleural cavity developed on the bases of rheumatoid arthritis, tuberculosis, pleural mesothelioma and esophagopleural fistula. In two patients had isolated fungal infections. Cultural positivity was seen in 5 patients. Fungal hyphae were determined by cytopathology in all of the patients. As a surgical procedure, all of the patients underwent decortication or pleural biopsy and pleural irrigation. In all patients, antifungal agents were added to surgical procedures. Full recovery of infection was seen in 5 patients. One patient died. Conclusion: In immunosuppressive patients, the incidence of pleural effusions due to or associated with fungal infections are more common. Addition to culture of pleural fluid, histopathological evaluation of pleura will aid diagnosis. J Clin Exp Invest 2013; 4 (4: 443-446

  10. Fungal infection in organ transplant patients

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    洪微; 温海; 廖万清

    2003-01-01

    Purpose To review the characteristics and evolution of the fungal spectrum, and the risk factors causing fungal infection, and to make progress in diagnosing fungal infection after organ transplantation.Data sources An English-language literature search (MEDLINE 1990-2000) and bibliographic review of textbooks and review articles.Study selection Twenty-three articles were selected from the literature that specifically addressed the stated purpose.Results Fungal infections in organ transplant patients were generally divided into two types: ① disseminated primary or reactivation infection with one of the geographically restricted systemic mycoses; ② opportunistic infection by fungal species that rarely cause invasive infection in normal hosts. The risk factors of fungal infection after a transplant can be evaluated and predicted according to the organ recipient ’s conditions before, during and after the transplant. Progress in early diagnostic methods during the past 10 years has mainly revolved around two aspects, culture and non-culture. Conclusions It is important to undertake a systemic evaluation on the condition of the organ recipient before, during and after a transplant; should any risk factor for fungal infection be suspected, diagnosis should be made as early as possible by employing mycological techniques including culture and non-culture methods.

  11. Invasive fungal infections in renal transplant recipients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Badiee, Parisa; Alborzi, Abdolvahab

    2011-12-01

    Invasive fungal infections are a significant and often lethal problem in transplant patients. Infections caused by geographically limited endemic fungi are infrequent, and Aspergillus species, Mucorales species, Candida species, and Cryptococcus neoformans are the opportunistic fungi responsible for most such infections. The symptoms of systemic fungal infections are nonspecific, particularly in their early stages. The high rates of mortality and graft loss owing to fungal infections render early diagnosis and treatment imperative in immunosuppressed patients. Current methods for the diagnosis of systemic fungal infections include imaging procedures, endoscopic methods and biopsies, microscopic and culture techniques, antibody and antigen-based serologic testing, and the detection (via polymerase chain reaction) of fungal deoxyribonucleic acid in blood or bronchoalveolar lavage fluid, as well as the careful analysis of signs and symptoms. Antifungal therapy should be initiated early in patients with a suspected fungal infection (even before laboratory findings have confirmed that diagnosis) and should be administered with appropriate adjustment of immunosuppressive regimens. To manage fungal infections in patients with renal failure, optimizing the pharmacokinetics of antifungal drugs to reduce the risk of nephrotoxicity is crucial.

  12. Change in algal symbiont communities after bleaching, not prior heat exposure, increases heat tolerance of reef corals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silverstein, Rachel N; Cunning, Ross; Baker, Andrew C

    2015-01-01

    Mutualistic organisms can be particularly susceptible to climate change stress, as their survivorship is often limited by the most vulnerable partner. However, symbiotic plasticity can also help organisms in changing environments by expanding their realized niche space. Coral-algal (Symbiodinium spp.) symbiosis exemplifies this dichotomy: the partnership is highly susceptible to 'bleaching' (stress-induced symbiosis breakdown), but stress-tolerant symbionts can also sometimes mitigate bleaching. Here, we investigate the role of diverse and mutable symbiotic partnerships in increasing corals' ability to thrive in high temperature conditions. We conducted repeat bleaching and recovery experiments on the coral Montastraea cavernosa, and used quantitative PCR and chlorophyll fluorometry to assess the structure and function of Symbiodinium communities within coral hosts. During an initial heat exposure (32 °C for 10 days), corals hosting only stress-sensitive symbionts (Symbiodinium C3) bleached, but recovered (at either 24 °C or 29 °C) with predominantly (>90%) stress-tolerant symbionts (Symbiodinium D1a), which were not detected before bleaching (either due to absence or extreme low abundance). When a second heat stress (also 32 °C for 10 days) was applied 3 months later, corals that previously bleached and were now dominated by D1a Symbiodinium experienced less photodamage and symbiont loss compared to control corals that had not been previously bleached, and were therefore still dominated by Symbiodinium C3. Additional corals that were initially bleached without heat by a herbicide (DCMU, at 24 °C) also recovered predominantly with D1a symbionts, and similarly lost fewer symbionts during subsequent thermal stress. Increased thermotolerance was also not observed in C3-dominated corals that were acclimated for 3 months to warmer temperatures (29 °C) before heat stress. These findings indicate that increased thermotolerance post-bleaching resulted from

  13. Phylogenetic relationships of chemoautotrophic bacterial symbionts of Solemya velum say (Mollusca: Bivalvia) determined by 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eisen, J A; Smith, S W; Cavanaugh, C M

    1992-05-01

    The protobranch bivalve Solemya velum Say (Mollusca: Bivalvia) houses chemoautotrophic symbionts intracellularly within its gills. These symbionts were characterized through sequencing of polymerase chain reaction-amplified 16S rRNA coding regions and hybridization of an Escherichia coli gene probe to S. velum genomic DNA restriction fragments. The symbionts appeared to have only one copy of the 16S rRNA gene. The lack of variability in the 16S sequence and hybridization patterns within and between individual S. velum organisms suggested that one species of symbiont is dominant within and specific for this host species. Phylogenetic analysis of the 16S sequences of the symbionts indicates that they lie within the chemoautotrophic cluster of the gamma subdivision of the eubacterial group Proteobacteria.

  14. Fungal glycans and the innate immune recognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo Tinoco Figueiredo

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Polysaccharides such as α- and β-glucans, chitin and glycoproteins extensively modified with both N- and O-linked carbohydrates are the major components of fungal surfaces. The fungal cell wall is an excellent target for the action of antifungal agents, since most of its components are absent from mammalian cells. Recognition of these carbohydrate-containing molecules by the innate immune system triggers inflammatory responses and activation of microbicidal mechanisms by leukocytes. This review will discuss the structure of surface fungal glycoconjugates and polysaccharides and their recognition by innate immune receptors.

  15. Fungal Mating Pheromones: Choreographing the Dating Game

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Stephen K.; Bennett, Richard J.

    2011-01-01

    Pheromones are ubiquitous from bacteria to mammals - a testament to their importance in regulating inter-cellular communication. In fungal species, they play a critical role in choreographing interactions between mating partners during the program of sexual reproduction. Here, we describe how fungal pheromones are synthesized, their interactions with G protein-coupled receptors, and the signals propagated by this interaction, using Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a reference point. Divergence from this model system is compared amongst the ascomycetes and basidiomycetes, which reveals the wealth of information that has been gleaned from studying pheromone-driven processes across a wide spectrum of the fungal kingdom. PMID:21496492

  16. Fungal colonization of air-conditioning systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ljaljević-Grbić Milica

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Fungi have been implicated as quantitatively the most important bioaerosol component of indoor air associated with contaminated air-conditioning systems. rarely, indoor fungi may cause human infections, but more commonly allergenic responses ranging from pneumonitis to asthma-like symptoms. From all air conditioner filters analyzed, 16 fungal taxa were isolated and identified. Aspergillus fumigatus causes more lethal infections worldwide than any other mold. Air-conditioning filters that adsorb moisture and volatile organics appear to provide suitable substrates for fungal colonization. It is important to stress that fungal colonization of air-conditioning systems should not be ignored, especially in hospital environments.

  17. Fungal mating pheromones: choreographing the dating game.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Stephen K; Bennett, Richard J

    2011-07-01

    Pheromones are ubiquitous from bacteria to mammals - a testament to their importance in regulating inter-cellular communication. In fungal species, they play a critical role in choreographing interactions between mating partners during the program of sexual reproduction. Here, we describe how fungal pheromones are synthesized, their interactions with G protein-coupled receptors, and the signals propagated by this interaction, using Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a reference point. Divergence from this model system is compared amongst the ascomycetes and basidiomycetes, which reveals the wealth of information that has been gleaned from studying pheromone-driven processes across a wide spectrum of the fungal kingdom.

  18. DNA adenine methylation of sams1 gene in symbiont-bearing Amoeba proteus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeon, Taeck J

    2008-10-01

    The expression of amoeba sams genes is switched from sams1 to sams2 when amoebae are infected with Legionella jeonii. To elucidate the mechanism for the inactivation of host sams1 gene by endosymbiotic bacteria, methylation states of the sams1 gene of D and xD amoebae was compared in this study. The sams1 gene of amoebae was methylated at an internal adenine residue of GATC site in symbiont-bearing xD amoebae but not in symbiont-free D amoebae, suggesting that the modification might have caused the inactivation of sams1 in xD amoebae. The sams1 gene of xD amoebae was inactivated at the transcriptional level. Analysis of DNA showed that adenine residues in L. jeonii sams were also methylated, implying that L. jeonii bacteria belong to a Dam methylase-positive strain. In addition, both SAM and Met appeared to act as negative regulators for the expression of sams1 whereas the expression of sams2 was not affected in amoebae.

  19. Conditional Reduction of Predation Risk Associated with a Facultative Symbiont in an Insect.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah Polin

    Full Text Available Symbionts are widespread among eukaryotes and their impacts on the ecology and evolution of their hosts are meaningful. Most insects harbour obligate and facultative symbiotic bacteria that can influence their phenotype. In the pea aphid Acyrthosiphon pisum, an astounding symbiotic-mediated phenotype has been recently observed: when infected with the symbiotic bacteria Rickettsiella viridis, young red aphid larvae become greener at adulthood and even darker green when co-infected with Rickettsiella viridis and Hamiltonella defensa. As body colour affects the susceptibility towards natural enemies in aphids, the influence of the colour change due to these facultative symbionts on the host survival in presence of predators was tested. Our results suggested that the Rickettsiella viridis infection may impact positively host survival by reducing predation risk. Due to results from uninfected aphids (i.e., more green ones attacked, the main assumption is that this symbiotic infection would deter the predatory ladybird feeding by reducing the profitability of their hosts rather than decreasing host detection through body colour change. Aphids co-infected with Rickettsiella viridis and Hamiltonella defensa were, however, more exposed to predation suggesting an ecological cost associated with multiple infections. The underlying mechanisms and ecological consequences of these symbiotic effects are discussed.

  20. Prevalence and distribution of three protozoan symbionts in blue crab (Callinectes sapidus) populations across Louisiana, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rogers, Holly A; Taylor, Sabrina S; Hawke, John P; Anderson Lively, Julie A

    2015-05-11

    Louisiana has one of the largest blue crab (Callinectes sapidus) fisheries in the USA, but little is known about blue crab diseases, parasites, and symbionts in this area. In 2013-2014, large juvenile and adult blue crabs were collected at 4 diverse sites to determine the prevalence of the protozoan symbionts associated with black gill disease (Lagenophrys callinectes), buckshot crabs (Urosporidium crescens), and bitter crab disease (Hematodinium perezi). A high aggregate prevalence of L. callinectes (93.2%) was identified across all seasons at all 4 collection sites regardless of salinity. A moderately low aggregate prevalence of U. crescens (22.4%) was identified across all seasons and sites. Prevalence of U. crescens depended on site salinity, with only 10% of infections detected at sites with callinectes and U. crescens are commensal parasites of blue crabs, infections can result in unmarketable and unappealing meat. In the Louisiana fishery, H. perezi has been blamed circumstantially for adult mortalities in the low salinity nearshore fishing grounds. Despite this, H. perezi was not detected in any of the large crabs sampled, even from the low salinity sites. The prevalence data reported here for these 3 protozoans are the first to include blue crabs sampled seasonally at multiple locations along the Louisiana coast over the period of a year.

  1. Building the crops of tomorrow: advantages of symbiont-based approaches to improving abiotic stress tolerance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Devin eColeman-Derr

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The exponential growth in world population is feeding a steadily increasing global need for arable farmland, a resource that is already in high demand. This trend has led to increased farming on subprime arid and semi-arid lands, where limited availability of water and a host of environmental stresses often severely reduce crop productivity. The conventional approach to mitigating the abiotic stresses associated with arid climes is to breed for stress-tolerant cultivars, a time and labor intensive venture that often neglects the complex ecological context of the soil environment in which the crop is grown. In recent years, studies have attempted to identify microbial symbionts capable of conferring the same stress-tolerance to their plant hosts, and new developments in genomic technologies have greatly facilitated such research. Here, we highlight many of the advantages of these symbiont-based approaches and argue in favor of the broader recognition of crop species as ecological niches for a diverse community of microorganisms that function in concert with their plant hosts and each other to thrive under fluctuating environmental conditions.

  2. Symbionts commonly provide broad spectrum resistance to viruses in insects: a comparative analysis of Wolbachia strains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez, Julien; Longdon, Ben; Bauer, Simone; Chan, Yuk-Sang; Miller, Wolfgang J; Bourtzis, Kostas; Teixeira, Luis; Jiggins, Francis M

    2014-09-01

    In the last decade, bacterial symbionts have been shown to play an important role in protecting hosts against pathogens. Wolbachia, a widespread symbiont in arthropods, can protect Drosophila and mosquito species against viral infections. We have investigated antiviral protection in 19 Wolbachia strains originating from 16 Drosophila species after transfer into the same genotype of Drosophila simulans. We found that approximately half of the strains protected against two RNA viruses. Given that 40% of terrestrial arthropod species are estimated to harbour Wolbachia, as many as a fifth of all arthropods species may benefit from Wolbachia-mediated protection. The level of protection against two distantly related RNA viruses--DCV and FHV--was strongly genetically correlated, which suggests that there is a single mechanism of protection with broad specificity. Furthermore, Wolbachia is making flies resistant to viruses, as increases in survival can be largely explained by reductions in viral titer. Variation in the level of antiviral protection provided by different Wolbachia strains is strongly genetically correlated to the density of the bacteria strains in host tissues. We found no support for two previously proposed mechanisms of Wolbachia-mediated protection--activation of the immune system and upregulation of the methyltransferase Dnmt2. The large variation in Wolbachia's antiviral properties highlights the need to carefully select Wolbachia strains introduced into mosquito populations to prevent the transmission of arboviruses.

  3. Independent Effects of a Herbivore's Bacterial Symbionts on Its Performance and Induced Plant Defences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Staudacher, Heike; Schimmel, Bernardus C J; Lamers, Mart M; Wybouw, Nicky; Groot, Astrid T; Kant, Merijn R

    2017-01-18

    It is well known that microbial pathogens and herbivores elicit defence responses in plants. Moreover, microorganisms associated with herbivores, such as bacteria or viruses, can modulate the plant's response to herbivores. Herbivorous spider mites can harbour different species of bacterial symbionts and exert a broad range of effects on host-plant defences. Hence, we tested the extent to which such symbionts affect the plant's defences induced by their mite host and assessed if this translates into changes in plant resistance. We assessed the bacterial communities of two strains of the common mite pest Tetranychus urticae. We found that these strains harboured distinct symbiotic bacteria and removed these using antibiotics. Subsequently, we tested to which extent mites with and without symbiotic bacteria induce plant defences in terms of phytohormone accumulation and defence gene expression, and assessed mite oviposition and survival as a measure for plant resistance. We observed that the absence/presence of these bacteria altered distinct plant defence parameters and affected mite performance but we did not find indications for a causal link between the two. We argue that although bacteria-related effects on host-induced plant defences may occur, these do not necessarily affect plant resistance concomitantly.

  4. Characterization of the symbiont Rickettsia in the mirid bug Nesidiocoris tenuis (Reuter) (Heteroptera: Miridae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caspi-Fluger, A; Inbar, M; Steinberg, S; Friedmann, Y; Freund, M; Mozes-Daube, N; Zchori-Fein, E

    2014-12-01

    Nesidiocoris tenuis (Reuter) (Heteroptera: Miridae) is an omnivorous insect used for biological control. Augmentative release and conservation of N. tenuis have been used for pest control in tomato crops. Intracellular bacterial symbionts of arthropods are common in nature and have diverse effects on their hosts; in some cases they can dramatically affect biological control. Fingerprinting methods showed that the symbiotic complex associated with N. tenuis includes Wolbachia and Rickettsia. Rickettsia of N. tenuis was further characterized by sequencing the 16S rRNA and gltA bacterial genes, measuring its amount in different developmental stages of the insect by real-time polymerase chain reaction, and localizing the bacteria in the insect's body by fluorescence in situ hybridization. The Rickettsia in N. tenuis exhibited 99 and 96% similarity of both sequenced genes to Rickettsia bellii and Rickettsia reported from Bemisia tabaci, respectively. The highest amount of Rickettsia was measured in the 5th instar and adult, and the symbionts could be detected in the host gut and ovaries. Although the role played by Rickettsia in the biology of N. tenuis is currently unknown, their high amount in the adults and localization in the gut suggest that they may have a nutritional role in this insect.

  5. Bacteriocins with a broader antimicrobial spectrum prevail in enterococcal symbionts isolated from the hoopoe's uropygial gland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz-Rodríguez, Magdalena; Martínez-Bueno, Manuel; Martín-Vivaldi, Manuel; Valdivia, Eva; Soler, Juan J

    2013-09-01

    The use of compounds produced by symbiotic bacteria against pathogens in animals is one of the most exciting discoveries in ecological immunology. The study of those antibiotic metabolites will enable an understanding of the defensive strategies against pathogenic infections. Here, we explore the role of bacteriocins explaining the antimicrobial properties of symbiotic bacteria isolated from the uropygial gland of the hoopoe (Upupa epops). The antagonistic activity of 187 strains was assayed against eight indicator bacteria, and the presence of six bacteriocin genes was detected in the genomic DNA. The presence of bacteriocin genes correlated with the antimicrobial activity of isolates. The most frequently detected bacteriocin genes were those encoding for the MR10 and AS-48 enterocins, which confer the highest inhibition capacity. All the isolates belonged to the genus Enterococcus, with E. faecalis as the most abundant species, with the broadest antimicrobial spectrum and the highest antagonistic activity. The vast majority of E. faecalis strains carried the genes of MR10 and AS-48 in their genome. Therefore, we suggest that fitness-related benefits for hoopoes associated with harbouring the most bactericidal symbionts cause the highest frequency of strains carrying MR10 and AS-48 genes. The study of mechanisms associated with the acquisition and selection of bacterial symbionts by hoopoes is necessary, however, to reach further conclusions.

  6. THE ROLE OF BACTERIAL SYMBIONTS IN AMINO ACID COMPOSITION OF BLACK BEAN APHIDS

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    MingGan; De-ChengDing; Xue-xiaMiao

    2003-01-01

    To evaluate the role of bacterial symbionts ( Buchnera spp. ) in the black bean aphids ( Aphis craccivora Koch), the aphids were treated with the antibiotic, rifampicin, to eliminate their intracellular symbiotic bacteria. Analysis of protein and amino acid concentration in 7-day-old of aposymbiotic aphids showed that the total protein content per mg fresh weight was significantly reduced by 29 %, but free amino acid titers were increased by 17% . The ratio of the essential amino acids was in general only around 20% essential amino acids in phloem sap of broad bean, whereas it was 44% and 37% in symbiotic and aposymbiotic aphids, respectively,suggesting that the composition of the free amino acids was unbalanced. For example, the essential amino acid,threonine represented 21. 6% of essential amino acids in symbiotic aphids, but it was only 16.7% in aposymbiotic aphids. Likewise, two nonessential amino acids, tyrosine and serine, represented 8.9% and 5.6% of total amino acids in symbiontic aphids, respectively, but they enhanced to 21.1% and 13.6% in aposymbiotic aphids. It seems likely that the elevated free amino acid concentration in aposymbiotic aphids was caused by the limited protein anabolism as the result of the unbalanced amino acid composition.

  7. Building the crops of tomorrow: advantages of symbiont-based approaches to improving abiotic stress tolerance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Coleman-Derr, Devin [USDOE Joint Genome Institute (JGI), Walnut Creek, CA (United States); Tringe, Susannah G. [USDOE Joint Genome Institute (JGI), Walnut Creek, CA (United States)

    2014-06-06

    The exponential growth in world population is feeding a steadily increasing global need for arable farmland, a resource that is already in high demand. This trend has led to increased farming on subprime arid and semi-arid lands, where limited availability of water and a host of environmental stresses often severely reduce crop productivity. The conventional approach to mitigating the abiotic stresses associated with arid climes is to breed for stress-tolerant cultivars, a time and labor intensive venture that often neglects the complex ecological context of the soil environment in which the crop is grown. In recent years, studies have attempted to identify microbial symbionts capable of conferring the same stress-tolerance to their plant hosts, and new developments in genomic technologies have greatly facilitated such research. Here in this paper, we highlight many of the advantages of these symbiont-based approaches and argue in favor of the broader recognition of crop species as ecological niches for a diverse community of microorganisms that function in concert with their plant hosts and each other to thrive under fluctuating environmental conditions

  8. Response of the bacterial symbiont Holospora caryophila to different growth conditions of its host.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castelli, Michele; Lanzoni, Olivia; Fokin, Sergei I; Schrallhammer, Martina; Petroni, Giulio

    2015-02-01

    Previous studies on bacterial symbionts of ciliates have shown that some symbionts can be maintained relatively well under standard laboratory conditions whereas others are frequently lost, especially when the host is cultivated at a high division rate. In this study, the variation in infection level by the endosymbiont Holospora caryophila within its host population Paramecium octaurelia was investigated in response to three alimentary treatments and a subsequent starvation phase. The response of the ciliates was determined as a nearly exponential growth rate with different slopes in each treatment, proportional to the amount of food received. The initial infection level was higher than 90%. After 24 days of exponential host's growth, the prevalence remained stable at approximately 90% in all treatments, even after a subsequent starvation phase of 20 days. However, at intermediate time-points in both the feeding and the starvation phase, fluctuations in the presence of the intracellular bacteria were observed. These results show that H. caryophila is able to maintain its infection under the tested range of host growth conditions, also due to the possibility of an effective re-infection in case of partial loss.

  9. Symbionts commonly provide broad spectrum resistance to viruses in insects: a comparative analysis of Wolbachia strains.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julien Martinez

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available In the last decade, bacterial symbionts have been shown to play an important role in protecting hosts against pathogens. Wolbachia, a widespread symbiont in arthropods, can protect Drosophila and mosquito species against viral infections. We have investigated antiviral protection in 19 Wolbachia strains originating from 16 Drosophila species after transfer into the same genotype of Drosophila simulans. We found that approximately half of the strains protected against two RNA viruses. Given that 40% of terrestrial arthropod species are estimated to harbour Wolbachia, as many as a fifth of all arthropods species may benefit from Wolbachia-mediated protection. The level of protection against two distantly related RNA viruses--DCV and FHV--was strongly genetically correlated, which suggests that there is a single mechanism of protection with broad specificity. Furthermore, Wolbachia is making flies resistant to viruses, as increases in survival can be largely explained by reductions in viral titer. Variation in the level of antiviral protection provided by different Wolbachia strains is strongly genetically correlated to the density of the bacteria strains in host tissues. We found no support for two previously proposed mechanisms of Wolbachia-mediated protection--activation of the immune system and upregulation of the methyltransferase Dnmt2. The large variation in Wolbachia's antiviral properties highlights the need to carefully select Wolbachia strains introduced into mosquito populations to prevent the transmission of arboviruses.

  10. Acetobacter tropicalis is a major symbiont of the olive fruit fly (Bactrocera oleae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kounatidis, Ilias; Crotti, Elena; Sapountzis, Panagiotis; Sacchi, Luciano; Rizzi, Aurora; Chouaia, Bessem; Bandi, Claudio; Alma, Alberto; Daffonchio, Daniele; Mavragani-Tsipidou, Penelope; Bourtzis, Kostas

    2009-05-01

    Following cultivation-dependent and -independent techniques, we investigated the microbiota associated with Bactrocera oleae, one of the major agricultural pests in olive-producing countries. Bacterial 16S rRNA gene libraries and ultrastructural analyses revealed the presence of several bacterial taxa associated with this insect, among which Acetobacter tropicalis was predominant. The recent increased detection of acetic acid bacteria as symbionts of other insect model organisms, such as Anopheles stephensi (G. Favia et al., Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 104:9047-9051, 2007) or Drosophila melanogaster (C. R. Cox and M. S. Gilmore, Infect. Immun. 75:1565-1576, 2007), prompted us to investigate the association established between A. tropicalis and B. oleae. Using an A. tropicalis-specific PCR assay, the symbiont was detected in all insects tested originating from laboratory stocks or field-collected from different locations in Greece. This acetic acid bacterium was successfully established in cell-free medium, and typing analyses, carried out on a collection of isolates, revealed that different A. tropicalis strains are present in fly populations. The capability to colonize and lodge in the digestive system of both larvae and adults and in Malpighian tubules of adults was demonstrated by using a strain labeled with a green fluorescent protein.

  11. Complete Genome Sequence of the Soybean Symbiont Bradyrhizobium japonicum Strain USDA6T

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nobukazu Uchiike

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available The complete nucleotide sequence of the genome of the soybean symbiont Bradyrhizobium japonicum strain USDA6T was determined. The genome of USDA6T is a single circular chromosome of 9,207,384 bp. The genome size is similar to that of the genome of another soybean symbiont, B. japonicum USDA110 (9,105,828 bp. Comparison of the whole-genome sequences of USDA6T and USDA110 showed colinearity of major regions in the two genomes, although a large inversion exists between them. A significantly high level of sequence conservation was detected in three regions on each genome. The gene constitution and nucleotide sequence features in these three regions indicate that they may have been derived from a symbiosis island. An ancestral, large symbiosis island, approximately 860 kb in total size, appears to have been split into these three regions by unknown large-scale genome rearrangements. The two integration events responsible for this appear to have taken place independently, but through comparable mechanisms, in both genomes.

  12. Molecular identification of symbionts from the pulmonate snail Biomphalaria glabrata in Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hertel, Lynn A; Barbosa, Contança S; Santos, Ricardo A A L; Loker, Eric S

    2004-08-01

    The icthyosporean, Capsaspora owczarzaki, a known predator of Schistosoma mansoni sporocysts in vitro, is more prevalent in laboratory-reared strains of the intermediate snail host, Biomphalaria glabrata resistant to S. mansoni, than from the susceptible M line strain. We examined whether B. glabrata resistant to the NIH-PR-1 strain of S. mansoni from 2 regions in Brazil were also host to C. owczarzaki. Symbiont presence was examined using hemolymph culturing and nested polymerase chain reaction of snail genomic DNA with primers designed to specifically amplify sequences from relatives of the Icthyosporea. All B. glabrata of the resistant Salvador strain from the laboratory of Dr. Lobato Paraense in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (n = 46) tested negative for symbionts. Three of 18 semiresistant 10-R2 B. glabrata from the laboratory of Dr. Barbosa in Recife, Brazil tested positive for C. owczarzaki. Another icthyosporean, Anurofeca sp., was identified from 1, 10-R2 snail and from 2 of 12 field-collected B. glabrata from Praia do Forte Orange, Ilha de Itamaracá. Snails from 2 other sites, Hotel Colibri, Pontezinha and Praia do Sossego, Ilha de Itamaracá, were negative for Anurofeca. Two genera of ciliates were also identified. Paruroleptus sp. was found in 4, 10-R2 snails and Trichodina sp. was identified in 2 field-collected snails from Praia do Forte Orange and Praia do Sossego.

  13. Burkholderia and Cupriavidus spp. are the preferred symbionts of Mimosa spp. in southern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, XiaoYun; Wei, Shuang; Wang, Fang; James, Euan K; Guo, XiaoYe; Zagar, Catherine; Xia, Liu Gui; Dong, Xin; Wang, Yi Peng

    2012-05-01

    Rhizobia were isolated from invasive Mimosa spp. (M. diplotricha and M. pudica) in Dehong district of the province of Yunnan in subtropical southern China. Almost all of the 98 isolates were β-rhizobia in the genera Burkholderia and Cupriavidus. These strains were analysed for their distribution characteristics together with strains from a previous study from Sishuangbanna. The proportion of nodules containing each β-rhizobial genus varied between Mimosa species, with Cupriavidus being predominant in M. diplotricha nodules (63.3% compared to 36.7% occupation with Burkholderia), but with M. pudica showing a slight preference for Burkholderia over Cupriavidus, with them occupying 56.5% and 43.5% of nodules, respectively. The symbiosis-essential genes nodA and nifH were present in all the Burkholderia and Cupriavidus strains tested, and their phylogenies indicated that these Mimosa symbionts share symbiotic genes with native South American rhizobia. The evolutionary discrepancies among 16S rRNA genes, nodA and nifH of Mimosa spp. symbionts, suggests that the nod and nif genes of β-rhizobia evolved independently. © 2012 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by Blackwell Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Human symbionts inject and neutralize antibacterial toxins to persist in the gut.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wexler, Aaron G; Bao, Yiqiao; Whitney, John C; Bobay, Louis-Marie; Xavier, Joao B; Schofield, Whitman B; Barry, Natasha A; Russell, Alistair B; Tran, Bao Q; Goo, Young Ah; Goodlett, David R; Ochman, Howard; Mougous, Joseph D; Goodman, Andrew L

    2016-03-29

    The human gut microbiome is a dynamic and densely populated microbial community that can provide important benefits to its host. Cooperation and competition for nutrients among its constituents only partially explain community composition and interpersonal variation. Notably, certain human-associated Bacteroidetes--one of two major phyla in the gut--also encode machinery for contact-dependent interbacterial antagonism, but its impact within gut microbial communities remains unknown. Here we report that prominent human gut symbionts persist in the gut through continuous attack on their immediate neighbors. Our analysis of just one of the hundreds of species in these communities reveals 12 candidate antibacterial effector loci that can exist in 32 combinations. Through the use of secretome studies, in vitro bacterial interaction assays and multiple mouse models, we uncover strain-specific effector/immunity repertoires that can predict interbacterial interactions in vitro and in vivo, and find that some of these strains avoid contact-dependent killing by accumulating immunity genes to effectors that they do not encode. Effector transmission rates in live animals can exceed 1 billion events per minute per gram of colonic contents, and multiphylum communities of human gut commensals can partially protect sensitive strains from these attacks. Together, these results suggest that gut microbes can determine their interactions through direct contact. An understanding of the strategies human gut symbionts have evolved to target other members of this community may provide new approaches for microbiome manipulation.

  15. Gastrointestinal symbionts of chimpanzees in Cantanhez National Park, Guinea-Bissau with respect to habitat fragmentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sá, Rui M; Petrášová, Jana; Pomajbíková, Kateřina; Profousová, Ilona; Petrželková, Klára J; Sousa, Cláudia; Cable, Joanne; Bruford, Michael W; Modrý, David

    2013-10-01

    One of the major factors threatening chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes verus) in Guinea-Bissau is habitat fragmentation. Such fragmentation may cause changes in symbiont dynamics resulting in increased susceptibility to infection, changes in host specificity and virulence. We monitored gastrointestinal symbiotic fauna of three chimpanzee subpopulations living within Cantanhez National Park (CNP) in Guinea Bissau in the areas with different levels of anthropogenic fragmentation. Using standard coproscopical methods (merthiolate-iodine formalin concentration and Sheather's flotation) we examined 102 fecal samples and identified at least 13 different symbiotic genera (Troglodytella abrassarti, Troglocorys cava, Blastocystis spp., Entamoeba spp., Iodamoeba butschlii, Giardia intestinalis, Chilomastix mesnili, Bertiella sp., Probstmayria gombensis, unidentified strongylids, Strongyloides stercoralis, Strongyloides fuelleborni, and Trichuris sp.). The symbiotic fauna of the CNP chimpanzees is comparable to that reported for other wild chimpanzee populations, although CNP chimpanzees have a higher prevalence of Trichuris sp. Symbiont richness was higher in chimpanzee subpopulations living in fragmented forests compared to the community inhabiting continuous forest area. We reported significantly higher prevalence of G. intestinalis in chimpanzees from fragmented areas, which could be attributed to increased contact with humans and livestock. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Hybridization in endophyte symbionts alters host response to moisture and nutrient treatments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamilton, Cyd E; Dowling, Thomas E; Faeth, Stanley H

    2010-05-01

    When a host organism is infected by a symbiont, the resulting symbiotum has a phenotype distinct from uninfected hosts. Genotypic interactions between the partners may increase phenotypic variation of the host at the population level. Neotyphodium is an asexual, vertically transmitted endophytic symbiont of grasses often existing in hybrid form. Hybridization in Neotyphodium rapidly increases the symbiotum's genomic content and is likely to increase the phenotypic variation of the host. This phenotypic variation is predicted to enhance host performance, especially in stressful environments. We tested this hypothesis by comparing the growth, survival, and resource allocation of hybrid and nonhybrid infected host plants exposed to controlled variation in soil moisture and nutrients. Infection by a hybrid endophyte did not fit our predictions of comparatively higher root and total biomass production under low moisture/low nutrient treatments. Regardless of whether the host was infected by a hybrid or nonhybrid endophyte, both produced significantly higher root/total biomass when both nutrient and moisture were high compared to limited nutrient/moisture treatments. However, infection by hybrid Neotyphodium did result in significantly higher total biomass and host survival compared to nonhybrid infected hosts, regardless of treatment. Endophyte hybridization alters host strategies in response to stress by increasing survival in depauperate habitats and thus, potentially increasing the relative long-term host fitness.

  17. Independent Effects of a Herbivore’s Bacterial Symbionts on Its Performance and Induced Plant Defences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Staudacher, Heike; Schimmel, Bernardus C. J.; Lamers, Mart M.; Wybouw, Nicky; Groot, Astrid T.; Kant, Merijn R.

    2017-01-01

    It is well known that microbial pathogens and herbivores elicit defence responses in plants. Moreover, microorganisms associated with herbivores, such as bacteria or viruses, can modulate the plant’s response to herbivores. Herbivorous spider mites can harbour different species of bacterial symbionts and exert a broad range of effects on host-plant defences. Hence, we tested the extent to which such symbionts affect the plant’s defences induced by their mite host and assessed if this translates into changes in plant resistance. We assessed the bacterial communities of two strains of the common mite pest Tetranychus urticae. We found that these strains harboured distinct symbiotic bacteria and removed these using antibiotics. Subsequently, we tested to which extent mites with and without symbiotic bacteria induce plant defences in terms of phytohormone accumulation and defence gene expression, and assessed mite oviposition and survival as a measure for plant resistance. We observed that the absence/presence of these bacteria altered distinct plant defence parameters and affected mite performance but we did not find indications for a causal link between the two. We argue that although bacteria-related effects on host-induced plant defences may occur, these do not necessarily affect plant resistance concomitantly. PMID:28106771

  18. Expanding Fungal Diets Through Synthetic Algal-Fungal Mutualism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Alaisha; Galazka, Jonathan (Editor)

    2015-01-01

    Fungi can synthesize numerous molecules with important properties, and could be valuable production platforms for space exploration and colonization. However, as heterotrophs, fungi require reduced carbon. This limits their efficiency in locations such as Mars, where reduced carbon is scarce. We propose a system to induce mutualistic symbiosis between the green algae Chlamydomonas reinhardtii and the filamentous fungi Neurospora crassa. This arrangement would mimic natural algal-fungal relationships found in lichens, but have added advantages including increased growth rate and genetic tractability. N. crassa would metabolize citrate (C6H5O7 (sup -3)) and release carbon dioxide (CO2) that C. reinhardtii would assimilate into organic sugars during photosynthesis. C. reinhardtii would metabolize nitrate (NO3-) and release ammonia (NH3) as a nitrogen source for N. crassa. A N. crassa mutant incapable of reducing nitrate will be used to force this interaction. This system eliminates the need to directly supply its participants with carbon dioxide and ammonia. Furthermore, the release of oxygen by C. reinhardtii via photosynthesis would enable N. crassa to respire. We hope to eventually create a system closer to lichen, in which the algae transfers not only nitrogen but reduced carbon, as organic sugars, to the fungus for growth and production of valuable compounds.

  19. PNNL Fungal Biotechnology Core DOE-OBP Project

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baker, Scott E.; Bruno, Kenneth S.; Butcher, Mark G.; Collett, James R.; Culley, David E.; Dai, Ziyu; Magnuson, Jon K.; Panisko, Ellen A.

    2009-11-30

    In 2009, we continued to address barriers to fungal fermentation in the primary areas of morphology control, genomics, proteomics, fungal hyperproductivity, biomass-to-products via fungal based consolidated bioprocesses, and filamentous fungal ethanol. “Alternative renewable fuels from fungi” was added as a new subtask. Plans were also made to launch a new advanced strain development subtask in FY2010.

  20. 7 CFR 201.58d - Fungal endophyte test.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 3 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Fungal endophyte test. 201.58d Section 201.58d... REGULATIONS Examinations in the Administration of the Act § 201.58d Fungal endophyte test. A fungal endophyte test may be used to determine the amount of fungal endophyte (Acremonium spp.) in certain grasses....

  1. Organ Transplant Patients and Fungal Infections

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... M, Practice ASTIDCo. Endemic fungal infections in solid organ transplantation. American Journal of Transplantation 2013;13 Suppl 4: ... Michaels MG. Strategies for safe living after solid organ transplantation. American Journal of Transplantation 2013;13 Suppl 4: ...

  2. HIV/AIDS and Fungal Infections

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Environmental Diseases Mycotic Diseases Branch People living with HIV/AIDS Recommend on Facebook Tweet Share Compartir As ... Page Preventing fungal infections in people living with HIV/AIDS Fungi are difficult to avoid because they ...

  3. Foreword: Special issue on fungal grapevine diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    An impressively large proportion of fungicides applied in European, North American and Australian agriculture has been used to manage grapevine powdery mildew (Erysiphe necator), grapevine downy mildew (Plasmopara viticola), and botrytis bunch rot (Botrytis cinerea). These fungal and oomycetous plan...

  4. Soil fungal community responses to global changes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Haugwitz, Merian Skouw

    Global change will affect the functioning and structure of terrestrial ecosystems and since soil fungi are key players in organic matter decomposition and nutrient turnover, shifts in fungal community composition might have a strong impact on soil functioning. The main focus of this thesis...... composition of fungi, but the effects were generally limited to the litter layer and the uppermost humus layer (0-5 cm), which was unexpected considering the ecosystem had been manipulated for 18 years. Taken together the global change experiments altered the soil fungal communities and thereby highlight...... was therefore to investigate the impact of global environmental changes on soil fungal communities in a temperate and subartic heath ecosystem. The objective was further to determine global change effects on major functional groups of fungi and analyze the influence of fungal community changes on soil carbon...

  5. postharvest fungal deterioration of tomato (lycopersicum esculentum ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Dr A.B.Ahmed

    the effect of some fungal species on the nutritional worth of tomatoes .... flask and then boiled for another 30minutes under the cold-finger condenser rotating the ..... mycotoxicoses, liver damage, suppression of the immune system and death ...

  6. (Post-)genomics approaches in fungal research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aguilar-Pontes, María Victoria; de Vries, Ronald P; Zhou, Miaomiao

    2014-11-01

    To date, hundreds of fungal genomes have been sequenced and many more are in progress. This wealth of genomic information has provided new directions to study fungal biodiversity. However, to further dissect and understand the complicated biological mechanisms involved in fungal life styles, functional studies beyond genomes are required. Thanks to the developments of current -omics techniques, it is possible to produce large amounts of fungal functional data in a high-throughput fashion (e.g. transcriptome, proteome, etc.). The increasing ease of creating -omics data has also created a major challenge for downstream data handling and analysis. Numerous databases, tools and software have been created to meet this challenge. Facing such a richness of techniques and information, hereby we provide a brief roadmap on current wet-lab and bioinformatics approaches to study functional genomics in fungi.

  7. The structure and function of fungal cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nozawa, Y.

    1984-01-01

    The structure and function of fungal cell walls were studied with particular emphasis on dermatophytes. Extraction, isolation, analysis, and observation of the cell wall structure and function were performed. The structure is described microscopically and chemically.

  8. Fungal contaminants observed during micropropagation of Lilium ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Micropropagation is a rapid propagation technique, but the greatest problem is contamination with fungi and bacteria. ... Fungal contaminants formed during the culture were determined. ... Bulb scales rinsed in water were surface sterilized, then solutions containing chemotherapeutic substances (Benomyl, ... Article Metrics.

  9. Fungal rhino sinusitisin in tehran, iran

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nazeri, M.; Hashemi, S.J.; Ardehali, M.; Rezaei, S.; Seyedmousavi, S.; Zareei, M.; Hosseinjani, E.

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Fungal rhino sinusitis (FRS) is an important infection of para nasal sinuses, which encompasses two main categories; invasive and noninvasive forms according to histopathological findings. Aspergillus spp are the most common species isolated from noninvasive form, while Mucorales are

  10. Air Contamination With Fungals In Museum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scarlat, Iuliana; Haiducu, Maria; Stepa, Raluca

    2015-07-01

    The aim of the studies was to determine the level and kind of fungal contamination of air in museum, deposits patrimony, restoration and conservation laboratories and their effects on health of workers. Microbiological air purity was measured with a SAS-100 Surface Air System impactor. The fungal contamination was observed in all 54 rooms where we made determinations. The highest levels of fungal were recorded at rooms with hygroscopic patrimony objects, eg carpets, chairs, upholstered chairs, books etc. The most species identified included under common allergens: Aspergillus, Penicillium, and Mucor. There fungal species belonging to the genus identified in this study, can trigger serious diseases museum workers, such as for example Aspergillus fumigatus, known allergies and toxic effects that may occur. In some places of the museum, occupational exposure limit values to fungi present in the air in the work environment, recommended by the specialized literature, have been overcome.

  11. Zoosporic fungal parasites of marine biota

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    RaghuKumar, C.

    laboratory media. In such instances, a detailed and careful examination of the disease symptoms and the endobiotic fungal parasites is to be recorded. Maintaining dual culture of the healthy and infected host also helps to fulfill these postulates partially....

  12. Spontaneous course of an untreated fungal spondylitis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wittig, C.; Mueller, R.T.; Konermann, H.

    1989-06-09

    After 29 known cases in the world, we report another case of fungal spondylitis being not yet treated. Within four months with increasing clinical complaints and without neurological defects the disease led to a complete involvement of two vertebras and their partial resorption. An early radiologic hint in fungal spondylitis is possible, a sure diagnosis, however, depends on puncture. Pathogenetic aspects and the importance of a new method to identify candida infection in blood-sample are discussed. (orig.).

  13. Fungal Endophthalmitis Associated with Compounded Products

    OpenAIRE

    Mikosz, Christina A.; Rachel M. Smith; Kim, Moon; Tyson, Clara; Lee, Ellen H.; Adams, Eleanor; Straif-Bourgeois, Susanne; Sowadsky, Rick; Arroyo, Shannon; Grant-Greene, Yoran; Duran, Julie; Vasquez, Yvonne; Robinson, Byron F.; Harris, Julie R.; Lockhart, Shawn R.

    2014-01-01

    Fungal endophthalmitis is a rare but serious infection. In March 2012, several cases of probable and laboratory-confirmed fungal endophthalmitis occurring after invasive ocular procedures were reported nationwide. We identified 47 cases in 9 states: 21 patients had been exposed to the intraocular dye Brilliant Blue G (BBG) during retinal surgery, and the other 26 had received an intravitreal injection containing triamcinolone acetonide. Both drugs were produced by Franck’s Compounding Lab (Oc...

  14. Prospects for the development of fungal vaccines.

    OpenAIRE

    Deepe, G S

    1997-01-01

    In an era that emphasizes the term "cost-effective," vaccines are the ideal solution to preventing disease at a relatively low cost to society. Much of the previous emphasis has been on childhood scourges such as measles, mumps, rubella, poliomyelitis, and Haemophilus influenzae type b. The concept of vaccines for fungal diseases has had less impact because of the perceived limited problem. However, fungal diseases have become increasingly appreciated as serious medical problems that require ...

  15. Fungal infections of the oral mucosa

    OpenAIRE

    P Anitha Krishnan

    2012-01-01

    Fungal infections in humans occur as a result of defects in the immune system. An increasing emergence in oral Candidal and non-Candidal fungal infections is evident in the past decade owing to the rise in the immunodeficient and immunocompromised population globally. Oral Candidal infection usually involves a compromised host and the compromise may be local or systemic. Local compromising factors include decreased salivation, poor oral hygiene, wearing dentures among others while systemic fa...

  16. Association of fungal sepsis and galactosemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verma, Sanjay; Bharti, Bhavneet; Inusha, P

    2010-06-01

    Galactosemia is one of the rare inborn errors of metabolism, which if detected early can be treated effectively. Galactosemic infants have a significant increased risk of developing sepsis. E. coli sepsis is a known entity, and also an important cause of early mortality in these children. But fungal sepsis in these patients is rarely reported. Here is a case of 45 day-old child who presented with fungal sepsis, which on investigation turned out to be galactosemia.

  17. Fungal Mating Pheromones: Choreographing the Dating Game

    OpenAIRE

    2011-01-01

    Pheromones are ubiquitous from bacteria to mammals - a testament to their importance in regulating inter-cellular communication. In fungal species, they play a critical role in choreographing interactions between mating partners during the program of sexual reproduction. Here, we describe how fungal pheromones are synthesized, their interactions with G protein-coupled receptors, and the signals propagated by this interaction, using Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a reference point. Divergence fro...

  18. Fungal allelochemicals in insect pest management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holighaus, Gerrit; Rohlfs, Marko

    2016-07-01

    Interactions between insects and fungi are widespread, and important mediators of these interactions are fungal chemicals that can therefore be considered as allelochemicals. Numerous studies suggest that fungal chemicals can affect insects in many different ways. Here, we apply the terminology established by insect-plant ecologists for categorizing the effect of fungal allelochemicals on insects and for evaluating the application potential of these chemicals in insect pest management. Our literature survey shows that fungal volatile and non-volatile chemicals have an enormous potential to influence insect behavior and fitness. Many of them still remain to be discovered, but some recent examples of repellents and toxins could open up new ways for developing safe insect control strategies. However, we also identified shortcomings in our understanding of the chemical ecology of insect-fungus interactions and the way they have been investigated. In particular, the mode-of-action of fungal allelochemicals has often not been appropriately designated or examined, and the way in which induction by insects affects fungal chemical diversity is poorly understood. This review should raise awareness that in-depth ecological studies of insect-fungus interactions can reveal novel allelochemicals of particular benefit for the development of innovative insect pest management strategies.

  19. Burden of fungal infections in Senegal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Badiane, Aida S; Ndiaye, Daouda; Denning, David W

    2015-10-01

    Senegal has a high rate of tuberculosis and a low HIV seropositivity rate and aspergilloma, life-threatening fungal infections, dermatophytosis and mycetoma have been reported in this study. All published epidemiology papers reporting fungal infection rates from Senegal were identified. Where no data existed, we used specific populations at risk and fungal infection frequencies in each to estimate national incidence or prevalence. The results show that tinea capitis is common being found in 25% of children, ~1.5 million. About 191,000 Senegalese women get recurrent vaginal thrush, ≥4 times annually. We estimate 685 incident cases of chronic pulmonary aspergillosis (CPA) following TB and prevalence of 2160 cases. Asthma prevalence in adults varies from 3.2% to 8.2% (mean 5%); 9976 adults have allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis (ABPA) and 13,168 have severe asthma with fungal sensitisation (SAFS). Of the 59,000 estimated HIV-positive patients, 366 develop cryptococcal meningitis; 1149 develop Pneumocystis pneumonia and 1946 develop oesophageal candidiasis, in which oral candidiasis (53%) and dermatophytosis (16%) are common. Since 2008-2010, 113 cases of mycetoma were diagnosed. In conclusion, we estimate that 1,743,507 (12.5%) people in Senegal suffer from a fungal infection, excluding oral candidiasis, fungal keratitis, invasive candidiasis or aspergillosis. Diagnostic and treatment deficiencies should be rectified to allow epidemiological studies.

  20. Structure and biological functions of fungal cerebrosides

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barreto-Bergter Eliana

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Ceramide monohexosides (CMHs, cerebrosides are glycosphingolipids composed of a hydrophobic ceramide linked to one sugar unit. In fungal cells, CMHs are very conserved molecules consisting of a ceramide moiety containing 9-methyl-4,8-sphingadienine in amidic linkage to 2-hydroxyoctadecanoic or 2-hydroxyhexadecanoic acids, and a carbohydrate portion consisting of one residue of glucose or galactose. 9-Methyl 4,8-sphingadienine-containing ceramides are usually glycosylated to form fungal cerebrosides, but the recent description of a ceramide dihexoside (CDH presenting phytosphingosine in Magnaporthe grisea suggests the existence of alternative pathways of ceramide glycosylation in fungal cells. Along with their unique structural characteristics, fungal CMHs have a peculiar subcellular distribution and striking biological properties. In Pseudallescheria boydii, Candida albicans, Cryptococcus neoformans, Aspergillus nidulans, A. fumigatus, and Schizophyllum commune, CMHs are apparently involved in morphological transitions and fungal growth. The elucidation of structural and functional aspects of fungal cerebrosides may therefore contribute to the design of new antifungal agents inhibiting growth and differentiation of pathogenic species.

  1. Fungal Keratitis - Improving Diagnostics by Confocal Microscopy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Esben Nielsen

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: Introducing a simple image grading system to support the interpretation of in vivo confocal microscopy (IVCM images in filamentous fungal keratitis. Setting: Clinical and confocal studies took place at the Department of Ophthalmology, Aarhus University Hospital, Denmark. Histopathological analysis was performed at the Eye Pathology Institute, Department of Neuroscience and Pharmacology, University of Copenhagen, Denmark. Methods: A recent series of consecutive patients with filamentous fungal keratitis is presented to demonstrate the results from in-house IVCM. Based upon our experience with IVCM and previously published images, we composed a grading system for interpreting IVCM images of filamentous fungal keratitis. Results: A recent case series of filamentous fungal keratitis from 2011 to 2012 was examined. There were 3 male and 3 female patients. Mean age was 44.5 years (range 12-69, 6 out of 17 (35% cultures were positive and a total of 6/7 (86% IVCM scans were positive. Three different categories of IVCM results for the grading of diagnostic certainty were formed. Conclusion: IVCM is a valuable tool for diagnosing filamentous fungal keratitis. In order to improve the reliability of IVCM, we suggest implementing a simple and clinically applicable grading system for aiding the interpretation of IVCM images of filamentous fungal keratitis.

  2. Genome Sequence of Bradyrhizobium viridifuturi Strain SEMIA 690T, a Nitrogen-Fixing Symbiont of Centrosema pubescens

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helene, Luisa Caroline Ferraz; Gomes, Douglas Fabiano; Delamuta, Jakeline Renata Marçon; Ribeiro, Renan Augusto; Souza, Renata Carolini; Almeida, Luiz Gonzaga Paula; Vasconcelos, Ana Tereza Ribeiro

    2015-01-01

    SEMIA 690T is a nitrogen-fixing symbiont of Centrosema pubescens, and comprises the recently described species Bradyrhizobium viridifuturi. Its draft genome indicates that it belongs to the Bradyrhizobium elkanii superclade. SEMIA 690T carries two copies of the regulatory nodD gene, and the nod and nif operons resemble those of Bradyrhizobium diazoefficiens. PMID:26679590

  3. Intracellular levels of the viral symbiont CPV in Cryptosporidium parvum correlate with fecundity of the parasite in dairy calves

    Science.gov (United States)

    Previous reports have cited differences in clinical signs and oocyst output among strains of Cryptosporidium parvum. The purpose of this study was to determine if levels of the C. parvum intracellular viral symbiont CPV correlated with observed clinical and parasitological differences. Calves infe...

  4. Immunochemical localization of ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase in the symbiont-containing gills of Solemya velum (Bivalvia : Mollusca)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cavanaugh, Colleen M.; Abbott, Marilyn S.; Veenhuis, Marten

    1988-01-01

    The distribution of the Calvin cycle enzyme ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase (RbuP2Case; EC 4.1.1.39) was examined by using two immunological methods in tissues of Solemya velum, an Atlantic coast bivalve containing putative chemoautotrophic symbionts. Antibodies elicited by the purified large

  5. Fusarium symbionts of an ambrosia beetle (Euwallacea sp.) in southern Florida are pathogens of avocado, Persea americana

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fusarium dieback, a destructive disease of avocado (Persea americana), was reported in California and Israel in 2012. It is associated with an ambrosia beetle, Euwallacea sp., and damage caused by an unnamed symbiont of the beetle in Clade 3 of the Fusarium solani species complex (FSSC) designated p...

  6. Draft Genome Sequence of "Candidatus Hepatoplasma crinochetorum" Ps, a Bacterial Symbiont in the Hepatopancreas of the Terrestrial Isopod Porcellio scaber.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collingro, Astrid; Kostanjšek, Rok; Toenshoff, Elena R; Schulz, Frederik; Schuster, Lisa; Domann, Daryl; Horn, Matthias

    2015-08-13

    "Candidatus Hepatoplasma crinochetorum" Ps is an extracellular symbiont residing in the hepatopancreas of the terrestrial isopod Porcellio scaber. Its genome is highly similar to that of the close relative "Ca. Hepatoplasma crinochetorum" Av from Armadillidium vulgare. However, instead of a clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat (CRISPR)-Cas system, it encodes a type I restriction modification system.

  7. Algal symbiont type affects gene expression in juveniles of the coral Acropora tenuis exposed to thermal stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuyama, Ikuko; Harii, Saki; Hidaka, Michio

    2012-05-01

    Reef-building corals harbor symbiotic dinoflagellates, Symbiodinium spp., which are currently divided into several clades. The responses of corals associated with different Symbiodinium clades to thermal stress are not well understood, especially at a gene expression level. Juveniles of the coral Acropora tenuis inoculated with different algal types (clade A or D) were exposed to thermal stress and the expression levels of four putative stress-responsive genes, including genes coding green and red fluorescent proteins, an oxidative stress-responsive protein, and an ascorbic acid transporter, were analyzed by quantitative real-time PCR. The expression levels of the four genes decreased at high temperatures if juveniles were associated with clade A symbionts but increased if the symbionts were in clade D. The intensity of green fluorescence increased with temperature in clade D symbionts harboring juveniles, but not in juveniles associated with clade A symbionts. The present results suggest that genotypes of endosymbiotic algae affect the thermal stress responses of the coral juveniles.

  8. Bacterial symbiont sharing in Megalomyrmex social parasites and their fungus-growing ant hosts

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Liberti, Joanito; Sapountzis, Panagiotis; Hansen, Lars H.;

    2015-01-01

    intensities and are distantly related. We used tag-encoded FLX 454 pyrosequencing and diagnostic PCR to map bacterial symbiont diversity across the Megalomyrmex phylogenetic tree, which also contains free-living generalist predators. We show that social parasites and hosts share a subset of bacterial...

  9. Intraspecific Variation in Microbial Symbiont Communities of the Sun Sponge, Hymeniacidon heliophila, from Intertidal and Subtidal Habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weigel, Brooke L; Erwin, Patrick M

    2015-11-13

    Sponges host diverse and complex communities of microbial symbionts that display a high degree of host specificity. The microbiomes of conspecific sponges are relatively constant, even across distant locations, yet few studies have directly examined the influence of abiotic factors on intraspecific variation in sponge microbial community structure. The contrast between intertidal and subtidal environments is an ideal system to assess the effect of environmental variation on sponge-microbe symbioses, producing two drastically different environments on a small spatial scale. Here, we characterized the microbial communities of individual intertidal and subtidal Hymeniacidon heliophila sponges, ambient seawater, and sediment from a North Carolina oyster reef habitat by partial (Illumina sequencing) and nearly full-length (clone libraries) 16S rRNA gene sequence analyses. Clone library sequences were compared to H. heliophila symbiont communities from the Gulf of Mexico and Brazil, revealing strong host specificity of dominant symbiont taxa across expansive geographic distances. Sediment and seawater samples yielded clearly distinct microbial communities from those found in H. heliophila. Despite the close proximity of the sponges sampled, significant differences between subtidal and intertidal sponges in the diversity, structure, and composition of their microbial communities were detected. Differences were driven by changes in the relative abundance of a few dominant microbial symbiont taxa, as well as the presence or absence of numerous rare microbial taxa. These findings suggest that extreme abiotic fluctuations, such as periodic air exposure in intertidal habitats, can drive intraspecific differences in complex host-microbe symbioses.

  10. Characterizing the host and symbiont proteomes in the association between the Bobtail squid, Euprymna scolopes, and the bacterium, Vibrio fischeri.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tyler R Schleicher

    Full Text Available The beneficial symbiosis between the Hawaiian bobtail squid, Euprymna scolopes, and the bioluminescent bacterium, Vibrio fischeri, provides a unique opportunity to study host/microbe interactions within a natural microenvironment. Colonization of the squid light organ by V. fischeri begins a lifelong association with a regulated daily rhythm. Each morning the host expels an exudate from the light organ consisting of 95% of the symbiont population in addition to host hemocytes and shed epithelial cells. We analyzed the host and symbiont proteomes of adult squid exudate and surrounding light organ epithelial tissue using 1D- and 2D-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and multidimensional protein identification technology (MudPIT in an effort to understand the contribution of both partners to the maintenance of this association. These proteomic analyses putatively identified 1581 unique proteins, 870 proteins originating from the symbiont and 711 from the host. Identified host proteins indicate a role of the innate immune system and reactive oxygen species (ROS in regulating the symbiosis. Symbiont proteins detected enhance our understanding of the role of quorum sensing, two-component signaling, motility, and detoxification of ROS and reactive nitrogen species (RNS inside the light organ. This study offers the first proteomic analysis of the symbiotic microenvironment of the adult light organ and provides the identification of proteins important to the regulation of this beneficial association.

  11. Burkholderia phymatum is a highly effective nitrogen-fixing symbiont of Mimosa spp. and fixes nitrogen ex planta.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elliott, Geoffrey N; Chen, Wen-Ming; Chou, Jui-Hsing; Wang, Hui-Chun; Sheu, Shih-Yi; Perin, Liamara; Reis, Veronica M; Moulin, Lionel; Simon, Marcelo F; Bontemps, Cyril; Sutherland, Joan M; Bessi, Rosana; de Faria, Sergio M; Trinick, Michael J; Prescott, Alan R; Sprent, Janet I; James, Euan K

    2007-01-01

    * The ability of Burkholderia phymatum STM815 to effectively nodulate Mimosa spp., and to fix nitrogen ex planta, was compared with that of the known Mimosa symbiont Cupriavidus taiwanensis LMG19424. * Both strains were equally effective symbionts of M. pudica, but nodules formed by STM815 had greater nitrogenase activity. STM815 was shown to have a broader host range across the genus Mimosa than LMG19424, nodulating 30 out of 31 species, 21 of these effectively. LMG19424 effectively nodulated only nine species. GFP-marked variants were used to visualise symbiont presence within nodules. * STM815 gave significant acetylene reduction assay (ARA) activity in semisolid JMV medium ex planta, but no ARA activity was detected with LMG19424. 16S rDNA sequences of two isolates originally from Mimosa nodules in Papua New Guinea (NGR114 and NGR195A) identified them as Burkholderia phymatum also, with nodA, nodC and nifH genes of NGR195A identical to those of STM815. * B. phymatum is therefore an effective Mimosa symbiont with a broad host range, and is the first reported beta-rhizobial strain to fix nitrogen in free-living culture.

  12. Ontogenetic changes in the bacterial symbiont community of the tropical demosponge Amphimedon queenslandica: metamorphosis is a new beginning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca A Fieth

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Vertical transmission of bacterial symbionts, which is known in many species of sponge (Porifera, is expected to promote strong fidelity between the partners. Combining 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing and electron microscopy, we have assayed the relative abundance of vertically-inherited bacterial symbionts in several stages of the life cycle of Amphimedon queenslandica, a tropical coral reef sponge. We reveal that adult A. queenslandica house a low diversity microbiome dominated by just three proteobacterial OTUs, with a single gammaprotebacterium clearly dominant through much of the life cycle. This ontogenetic perspective has revealed that, although vertical transmission occurs very early in development, the inherited symbionts do not maintain proportional dominance of the bacterial community at every developmental stage. A reproductive bottleneck in the A. queenslandica life cycle is larval settlement, when a free-swimming pelagic larva settles out of the water column onto the benthos and completes metamorphoses into the sessile body plan within just 3 to 4 days. During this dramatic life cycle transition, an influx of environmentally-derived bacteria leads to a major reorganization of the microbiome, potentially challenging the fidelity and persistence of the vertically-inherited symbiotic relationships. However, dominance of the primary, vertically-inherited symbionts is restored in adult sponges. The mechanisms underlying ontogenetic changes in the bacterial community are unknown, including how the dominance of the primary symbionts is restored in the adult sponge – does the host or symbiont regulate this process? Using high-resolution transcriptional profiling in multiple stages of the A. queenslandica life cycle combined with this natural perturbation of the microbiome immediately following larval settlement, we are beginning to identify candidate host genes associated with animal-bacterial crosstalk. Among the sponge host genes

  13. Comparisons of the fungal and protistan communities among different marine sponge holobionts by pyrosequencing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Liming; Liu, Fang; Karuppiah, Valliappan; Ren, Yi; Li, Zhiyong

    2014-05-01

    To date, the knowledge of eukaryotic communities associated with sponges remains limited compared with prokaryotic communities. In a manner similar to prokaryotes, it could be hypothesized that sponge holobionts have phylogenetically diverse eukaryotic symbionts, and the eukaryotic community structures in different sponge holobionts were probably different. In order to test this hypothesis, the communities of eukaryota associated with 11 species of South China Sea sponges were compared with the V4 region of 18S ribosomal ribonucleic acid gene using 454 pyrosequencing. Consequently, 135 and 721 unique operational taxonomic units (OTUs) of fungi and protists were obtained at 97 % sequence similarity, respectively. These sequences were assigned to 2 phyla of fungi (Ascomycota and Basidiomycota) and 9 phyla of protists including 5 algal phyla (Chlorophyta, Haptophyta, Streptophyta, Rhodophyta, and Stramenopiles) and 4 protozoal phyla (Alveolata, Cercozoa, Haplosporidia, and Radiolaria) including 47 orders (12 fungi, 35 protists). Entorrhizales of fungi and 18 orders of protists were detected in marine sponges for the first time. Particularly, Tilletiales of fungi and Chlorocystidales of protists were detected for the first time in marine habitats. Though Ascomycota, Alveolata, and Radiolaria were detected in all the 11 sponge species, sponge holobionts have different fungi and protistan communities according to OTU comparison and principal component analysis at the order level. This study provided the first insights into the fungal and protistan communities associated with different marine sponge holobionts using pyrosequencing, thus further extending the knowledge on sponge-associated eukaryotic diversity.

  14. High functional diversity within species of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi is associated with differences in phosphate and nitrogen uptake and fungal phosphate metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mensah, Jerry A; Koch, Alexander M; Antunes, Pedro M; Kiers, E Toby; Hart, Miranda; Bücking, Heike

    2015-10-01

    Plant growth responses following colonization with different isolates of a single species of an arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungus can range from highly beneficial to detrimental, but the reasons for this high within-species diversity are currently unknown. To examine whether differences in growth and nutritional benefits are related to the phosphate (P) metabolism of the fungal symbiont, the effect of 31 different isolates from 10 AM fungal morphospecies on the P and nitrogen (N) nutrition of Medicago sativa and the P allocation among different P pools was examined. Based on differences in the mycorrhizal growth response, high, medium, and low performance isolates were distinguished. Plant growth benefit was positively correlated to the mycorrhizal effect on P and N nutrition. High performance isolates increased plant biomass by more than 170 % and contributed substantially to both P and N nutrition, whereas the effect of medium performance isolates particularly on the N nutrition of the host was significantly lower. Roots colonized by high performance isolates were characterized by relatively low tissue concentrations of inorganic P and short-chain polyphosphates and a high ratio between long- to short-chain polyphosphates. The high performance isolates belonged to different morphospecies and genera, indicating that the ability to contribute to P and N nutrition is widespread within the Glomeromycota and that differences in symbiotic performance and P metabolism are not specific for individual fungal morphospecies.

  15. Wolbachia symbiont infections induce strong cytoplasmic incompatibility in the tsetse fly Glossina morsitans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Uzma Alam

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Tsetse flies are vectors of the protozoan parasite African trypanosomes, which cause sleeping sickness disease in humans and nagana in livestock. Although there are no effective vaccines and efficacious drugs against this parasite, vector reduction methods have been successful in curbing the disease, especially for nagana. Potential vector control methods that do not involve use of chemicals is a genetic modification approach where flies engineered to be parasite resistant are allowed to replace their susceptible natural counterparts, and Sterile Insect technique (SIT where males sterilized by chemical means are released to suppress female fecundity. The success of genetic modification approaches requires identification of strong drive systems to spread the desirable traits and the efficacy of SIT can be enhanced by identification of natural mating incompatibility. One such drive mechanism results from the cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI phenomenon induced by the symbiont Wolbachia. CI can also be used to induce natural mating incompatibility between release males and natural populations. Although Wolbachia infections have been reported in tsetse, it has been a challenge to understand their functional biology as attempts to cure tsetse of Wolbachia infections by antibiotic treatment damages the obligate mutualistic symbiont (Wigglesworthia, without which the flies are sterile. Here, we developed aposymbiotic (symbiont-free and fertile tsetse lines by dietary provisioning of tetracycline supplemented blood meals with yeast extract, which rescues Wigglesworthia-induced sterility. Our results reveal that Wolbachia infections confer strong CI during embryogenesis in Wolbachia-free (Gmm(Apo females when mated with Wolbachia-infected (Gmm(Wt males. These results are the first demonstration of the biological significance of Wolbachia infections in tsetse. Furthermore, when incorporated into a mathematical model, our results confirm that Wolbachia can

  16. Hypopyon in patients with fungal keratitis

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    XU Ling-juan; SONG Xiu-sheng; ZHAO Jing; SUN Shi-ying; XIE Li-xin

    2012-01-01

    Background Hypopyon is common in eyes with fungal keratitis.The evaluation of the clinical features,culture results and the risk factors for hypopyon and of the possible correlation between hypopyon and the treatment outcome could be helpful for making treatment decisions.Methods The medical records of 1066 inpatients (1069 eyes) with fungal keratitis seen at the Shandong Eye Institute from January 2000 to December 2009 were reviewed retrospectively for demographic features,risk factors,clinical characteristics,laboratory findings and treatment outcomes.The incidence of hypopyon,the fungal culture positivity for hypopyon,risk factors for hypopyon and the effect of hypopyon on the treatment and prognosis were determined.Results We identified 1069 eyes with fungal keratitis.Of the 850 fungal culture-positive eyes,the Fusarium species was the most frequent (73.6%),followed by Altemaria (10.0%) and Aspergillus (9.0%).Upon admission,562 (52.6%)eyes with hypopyon were identified.The hypopyon of 66 eyes was evaluated via fungal culturing,and 31 eyes (47.0%)were positive.A total of 194 eyes had ocular hypertension,and 172 (88.7%) of these eyes had hypopyon (P <0.001).Risk factors for incident hypopyon included long duration of symptoms (P <0.001),large lesion size (P <0.001) and infection caused by the Fusarium and Aspergillus species (P <0.001).The positivity of fungal culture for hypopyon was associated with duration of symptoms and lesion size.Surgical intervention was more common in cases with hypopyon (P <0.001).Hypopyon was a risk factor for the recurrence of fungal keratitis after corneal transplantation (P=0.002).Conclusions Hypopyon is common in patients with severe fungal keratitis and can cause ocular hypertension.About half of the hypopyon cases were positive based on fungal culture.Long duration of symptoms,large lesion size and infection with the Fusarium and Aspergillus species were risk factors for hypopyon.The presence of hypopyon

  17. Why Mycophoris is not an orchid seedling, and why Synaptomitus is not a fungal symbiont within this fossil

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Selosse, Marc-Andre; Brundrett, Mark; Dearnaley, John

    2017-01-01

    A recent publication in Botany introduced two new taxa: a fossil orchid seed (Mycophoris) and a fossilized basidiomycete fungus (Synaptomitus) in an alleged relationship with this orchid, encased in 15–20 million year old Dominican amber (Poinar, G. 2017. Two new genera, Mycophoris gen. nov......., (Orchidaceae) and Synaptomitus gen. nov. (Basidiomycota) based on a fossil seed with developing embryo and associated fungus in Dominican amber. Botany, 95: 1–8). From the working knowledge of extant orchid seeds, seedlings, and mycorrhiza shared among us, we cannot support these interpretations. Here we...

  18. Research progress on the bacterial and fungal symbionts in fruit flies( Diptera: Tephritidae)%实蝇共生菌研究进展

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    柳丽君; 李志红; 戴阳

    2011-01-01

    实蝇类昆虫(双翅目Diptera:实蝇科Tephritidae)是重要的农业害虫,为害农作物茎秆和水果,严重影响农业生产和果蔬贸易,被许多国家列为重要的检疫性有害生物.实蝇共生菌对宿主实蝇的取食、生殖、发育及环境适应能力具有重要作用.目前,已有21个属的共生细菌(Enterobacter、Klebsiellal、Citrobacter、Pseudomonas、Providencia、Erwinia、Acetobacter、Serratia、Proteus、Hafnia、Cedecea、Arthrobacter、Lactobacillus、Micrococcus、Streptococcus、Staphylococcus、Vibrio、Hafnia、Deinococcacea、Bacillus、Wolbachia)以及1个属的共生真菌(Candida)被鉴定.其中,肺炎杆菌Klebsiella pneumoniae、产酸克雷伯氏菌Klebsiella oxytoca、成团泛菌Papa agglomerans、费氏柠檬酸杆菌Citrobter freundii、阴沟肠杆菌Enterobacter cloacae和沃尔巴克氏体Wolbachia普遍存在于实蝇中且备受大家的关注.Wolbachia作为初级共生菌,主要分布于宿主的卵巢和产卵器中;其他次级共生菌则主要分布于宿主的消化道内.共生菌与宿主种群、宿主的地理分布、寄主植物以及宿主入侵能力之间的关系尚未明确.研究实蝇共生菌,对于发现新的实蝇诱饵,提高不育实蝇的环境适应性,以及提出新的实蝇防治技术具有重要意义.本文概述了实蝇共生菌的分布、种类、生物学特性、功能以及相关的研究方法,提出了研究中有待解决的问题,并探讨了下一步的研究热点.

  19. The inadequacy of morphology for species and genus delineation in microbial eukaryotes: an example from the parabasalian termite symbiont coronympha.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James T Harper

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: For the majority of microbial eukaryotes (protists, algae, there is no clearly superior species concept that is consistently applied. In the absence of a practical biological species concept, most species and genus level delineations have historically been based on morphology, which may lead to an underestimate of the diversity of microbial eukaryotes. Indeed, a growing body of molecular evidence, such as barcoding surveys, is beginning to support the conclusion that significant cryptic species diversity exists. This underestimate of diversity appears to be due to a combination of using morphology as the sole basis for assessing diversity and our inability to culture the vast majority of microbial life. Here we have used molecular markers to assess the species delineations in two related but morphologically distinct genera of uncultivated symbionts found in the hindgut of termites. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using single-cell isolation and environmental PCR, we have used a barcoding approach to characterize the diversity of Coronympha and Metacoronympha symbionts in four species of Incisitermes termites, which were also examined using scanning electron microscopy and light microcopy. Despite the fact that these genera are significantly different in morphological complexity and structural organisation, we find they are two life history stages of the same species. At the same time, we show that the symbionts from different termite hosts show an equal or greater level of sequence diversity than do the hosts, despite the fact that the symbionts are all classified as one species. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The morphological information used to describe the diversity of these microbial symbionts is misleading at both the genus and species levels, and led to an underestimate of species level diversity as well as an overestimate of genus level diversity. The genus 'Metacoronympha' is invalid and appears to be a life history stage of

  20. A Single Host-Derived Glycan Impacts Key Regulatory Nodes of Symbiont Metabolism in a Coevolved Mutualism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Min; Schwartzman, Julia A; Dunn, Anne K; Lu, Zuhong; Ruby, Edward G

    2015-07-14

    Most animal-microbe mutualistic associations are characterized by nutrient exchange between the partners. When the host provides the nutrients, it can gain the capacity to shape its microbial community, control the stability of the interaction, and promote its health and fitness. Using the bioluminescent squid-vibrio model, we demonstrate how a single host-derived glycan, chitin, regulates the metabolism of Vibrio fischeri at key points in the development and maintenance of the symbiosis. We first characterized the pathways for catabolism of chitin sugars by V. fischeri, demonstrating that the Ccr-dependent phosphoenolpyruvate-pyruvate phosphotransferase system (PTS) prioritizes transport of these sugars in V. fischeri by blocking the uptake of non-PTS carbohydrates, such as glycerol. Next, we found that PTS transport of chitin sugars into the bacterium shifted acetate homeostasis toward a net excretion of acetate and was sufficient to override an activation of the acetate switch by AinS-dependent quorum sensing. Finally, we showed that catabolism of chitin sugars decreases the rate of cell-specific oxygen consumption. Collectively, these three metabolic functions define a physiological shift that favors fermentative growth on chitin sugars and may support optimal symbiont luminescence, the functional basis of the squid-vibrio mutualism. Host-derived glycans have recently emerged as a link between symbiont nutrition and innate immune function. Unfortunately, the locations at which microbes typically access host-derived glycans are inaccessible to experimentation and imaging, and they take place in the context of diverse microbe-microbe interactions, creating a complex symbiotic ecology. Here we describe the metabolic state of a single microbial symbiont in a natural association with its coevolved host and, by doing so, infer key points at which a host-controlled tissue environment might regulate the physiological state of its symbionts. We show that the presence of

  1. The importance of gut symbionts in the development of the brown marmorated stink bug, Halyomorpha halys (Stal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher M Taylor

    Full Text Available The invasive brown marmorated stink bug, Halyomorpha halys (Stål, has become a severe agricultural pest and nuisance problem since its introduction in the U.S. Research is being conducted to understand its biology and to find management solutions. Its symbiotic relationship with gut symbionts is one aspect of its biology that is not understood. In the family Pentatomidae, the reliance on gut symbionts for successful development seems to vary depending on the species of stink bug. This research assessed the role of gut symbionts in the development, survivorship, and fecundity of H. halys. We compared various fitness parameters of nymphs and adults reared from surface sterilized and untreated egg masses during two consecutive generations under laboratory conditions. Results provided direct evidence that H. halys is negatively impacted by the prevention of vertical transmission of its gut symbionts and that this impact is significant in the first generation and manifests dramatically in the subsequent generation. Developmental time and survivorship of treated cohorts in the first generation were significantly affected during third instar development through to the adult stage. Adults from the sterilized treatment group exhibited longer pre-oviposition periods, produced fewer egg masses, had significantly smaller clutch sizes, and the hatch rate and survivorship of those eggs were significantly reduced. Observations following hatch of surface sterilized eggs also revealed significant effects on wandering behavior of the first instars. The second generation progeny from adults of the sterilized cohorts showed significantly lower survival to adulthood, averaging only 0.3% compared to 20.8% for the control cohorts. Taken together, results demonstrate that H. halys is heavily impacted by deprival of its gut symbionts. Given the economic status of this invasive pest, further investigations may lead to management tactics that disrupt this close symbiotic

  2. Habitat visualization and genomic analysis of "Candidatus Pantoea carbekii," the primary symbiont of the brown marmorated stink bug.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kenyon, Laura J; Meulia, Tea; Sabree, Zakee L

    2015-01-12

    Phytophagous pentatomid insects can negatively impact agricultural productivity and the brown marmorated stink bug (Halyomorpha halys) is an emerging invasive pest responsible for damage to many fruit crops and ornamental plants in North America. Many phytophagous stink bugs, including H. halys, harbor gammaproteobacterial symbionts that likely contribute to host development, and characterization of symbiont transmission/acquisition and their contribution to host fitness may offer alternative strategies for managing pest species. "Candidatus Pantoea carbekii" is the primary occupant of gastric ceca lumina flanking the distal midgut of H. halys insects and it is acquired each generation when nymphs feed on maternal extrachorion secretions following hatching. Insects prevented from symbiont uptake exhibit developmental delays and aberrant behaviors. To infer contributions of Ca. P. carbekii to H. halys, the complete genome was sequenced and annotated from a North American H. halys population. Overall, the Ca. P. carbekii genome is nearly one-fourth (1.2 Mb) that of free-living congenerics, and retains genes encoding many functions that are potentially host-supportive. Gene content reflects patterns of gene loss/retention typical of intracellular mutualists of plant-feeding insects. Electron and fluorescence in situ microscopic imaging of H. halys egg surfaces revealed that maternal extrachorion secretions were populated with Ca. P. carbekii cells. The reported findings detail a transgenerational mode of symbiont transmission distinct from that observed for intracellular insect mutualists and illustrate the potential additive functions contributed by the bacterial symbiont to this important agricultural pest. © The Author(s) 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  3. Etiological Analysis of Fungal Keratitis and Rapid Identification of Predominant Fungal Pathogens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Dan; Hao, Jilong; Gao, Song; Wan, Xue; Wang, Wanting; Shan, Qiushi; Wang, Li

    2016-02-01

    Fungal keratitis is a worldwide-distributed refractory and potentially blinding ocular infection caused by various fungi. It is necessary to investigate the etiological and epidemiological characteristics of this disease and establish a rapid and specific pathogenic identification method. Here, we isolated and identified fungal pathogens of 275 patients with presumed fungal keratitis from Jilin Province, China, and conducted statistical analyses of epidemiological information. The positive rate of fungal culture was 72.0 %. Fusarium sp. was the most common genus among 210 fungal isolates. The predominant species were Fusarium solani, Aspergillus fumigatus, and Candida glabrata, which accounted for over 50 % of the isolated organisms. Corneal trauma and previous use of drugs were the most important predisposing factors. In addition, a multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was designed with species-specific primers of the three species that could identify them with amplicons of approximately 330 bp from F. solani, 275 bp from A. fumigatus, and 230 bp from C. glabrata. Additionally, PCR with fungal universal primers and multiplex PCR were performed using DNA prepared by an improved DNA extraction method from corneal scrapings. With this method, fungal pathogens from corneal scrapings could be specifically and rapidly identified within 8 h. The culture-independent rapid identification of corneal scrapings may have great significance for the early diagnosis and treatment of fungal keratitis.

  4. Divergent and Convergent Evolution of Fungal Pathogenicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shang, Yanfang; Xiao, Guohua; Zheng, Peng; Cen, Kai; Zhan, Shuai; Wang, Chengshu

    2016-05-12

    Fungal pathogens of plants and animals have multifarious effects; they cause devastating damages to agricultures, lead to life-threatening diseases in humans, or induce beneficial effects by reducing insect pest populations. Many virulence factors have been determined in different fungal pathogens; however, the molecular determinants contributing to fungal host selection and adaptation are largely unknown. In this study, we sequenced the genomes of seven ascomycete insect pathogens and performed the genome-wide analyses of 33 species of filamentous ascomycete pathogenic fungi that infect insects (12 species), plants (12), and humans (9). Our results revealed that the genomes of plant pathogens encode more proteins and protein families than the insect and human pathogens. Unexpectedly, more common orthologous protein groups are shared between the insect and plant pathogens than between the two animal group pathogens. We also found that the pathogenicity of host-adapted fungi evolved multiple times, and that both divergent and convergent evolutions occurred during pathogen-host cospeciation thus resulting in protein families with similar features in each fungal group. However, the role of phylogenetic relatedness on the evolution of protein families and therefore pathotype formation could not be ruled out due to the effect of common ancestry. The evolutionary correlation analyses led to the identification of different protein families that correlated with alternate pathotypes. Particularly, the effector-like proteins identified in plant and animal pathogens were strongly linked to fungal host adaptation, suggesting the existence of similar gene-for-gene relationships in fungus-animal interactions that has not been established before. These results well advance our understanding of the evolution of fungal pathogenicity and the factors that contribute to fungal pathotype formation. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for

  5. Condition-specific RNA editing in the coral symbiont Symbiodinium microadriaticum

    KAUST Repository

    Liew, Yi Jin

    2017-03-01

    RNA editing is a rare post-transcriptional event that provides cells with an additional level of gene expression regulation. It has been implicated in various processes including adaptation, viral defence and RNA interference; however, its potential role as a mechanism in acclimatization has just recently been recognised. Here, we show that RNA editing occurs in 1.6% of all nuclear-encoded genes of Symbiodinium microadriaticum, a dinoflagellate symbiont of reef-building corals. All base-substitution edit types were present, and statistically significant motifs were associated with three edit types. Strikingly, a subset of genes exhibited condition-specific editing patterns in response to different stressors that resulted in significant increases of non-synonymous changes. We posit that this previously unrecognised mechanism extends this organism’s capability to respond to stress beyond what is encoded by the genome. This in turn may provide further acclimatization capacity to these organisms, and by extension, their coral hosts.

  6. Host Matters: Medicinal Leech Digestive-Tract Symbionts and their Pathogenic Potential

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeremiah Marden

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Digestive-tract microbiota exert tremendous influence over host health. Host-symbiont model systems are studied to investigate how symbioses are initiated and maintained, as well as to identify host processes affected by resident microbiota. The medicinal leech, Hirudo verbana, is an excellent model to address such questions owing to a microbiome that is consistently dominanted by two species, Aeromonas veronii and Mucinivorans hirudinis, both of which are cultivable and have sequenced genomes. This review outlines current knowledge about the dynamics of the H. verbana microbiome. We discuss in depth the factors required for A. veronii colonization and proliferation in the leech crop and summarize the current understanding of interactions between A. veronii and its annelid host. Lastly, we discuss leech usage in modern medicine and highlight how leech-therapy associated infections, often attributable to Aeromonas spp., are of growing clinical concern due in part to an increased prevalence of fluoroquinolone resistant strains.

  7. Bacterial symbionts in agricultural systems provide a strategic source for antibiotic discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramadhar, Timothy R; Beemelmanns, Christine; Currie, Cameron R; Clardy, Jon

    2014-01-01

    As increased antibiotic resistance erodes the efficacy of currently used drugs, the need for new candidates with therapeutic potential grows. Although the majority of antibiotics in clinical use originated from natural products, mostly from environmental actinomycetes, high rediscovery rates, among other factors, have diminished the enthusiasm for continued exploration of this historically important source. Several well-studied insect agricultural systems have bacterial symbionts that have evolved to produce small molecules that suppress environmental pathogens. These molecules represent an underexplored reservoir of potentially useful antibiotics. This report describes the multilateral symbioses common to insect agricultural systems, the general strategy used for antibiotic discovery and pertinent examples from three farming systems: fungus-farming ants, southern pine beetles (SPBs) and fungus-growing termites.

  8. Gymnoxanthella radiolariae gen. et sp. nov. (Dinophyceae), a dinoflagellate symbiont from solitary polycystine radiolarians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuasa, Tomoko; Horiguchi, Takeo; Mayama, Shigeki; Takahashi, Osamu

    2016-02-01

    The symbiotic dinoflagellate Gymnoxanthella radiolariae T. Yuasa et T. Horiguchi gen. et sp. nov. isolated from polycystine radiolarians is described herein based on light, scanning and transmission electron microscopy as well as molecular phylogenetic analyses of SSU and LSU rDNA sequences. Motile cells of G. radiolariae were obtained in culture, and appeared to be unarmored. The cells were 9.1-11.4 μm long and 5.7-9.4 μm wide, and oval to elongate oval in the ventral view. They possessed an counterclockwise horseshoe-shaped apical groove, a nuclear envelope with vesicular chambers, cingulum displacement with one cingulum width, and the nuclear fibrous connective; all of these are characteristics of Gymnodinium sensu stricto (Gymnodinium s.s.). Molecular phylogenetic analyses also indicated that G. radiolariae belongs to the clade of Gymnodinium s.s. However, in our molecular phylogenetic trees, G. radiolariae was distantly related to Gymnodinium fuscum, the type species of Gymnodinium. Based on the consistent morphological, genetic, and ecological divergence of our species with the other genera and species of Gymnodinium s.s., we considered it justified to erect a new, separate genus and species G. radiolariae gen. et sp. nov. As for the peridinioid symbiont of radiolarians, Brandtodinium has been erected as a new genus instead of Zooxanthella, but the name Zooxanthella is still valid. Brandtodinium is a junior synonym of Zooxanthella. Our results suggest that at least two dinoflagellate symbiont species, peridinioid Zooxanthella nutricula and gymnodinioid G. radiolariae, exist in radiolarians, and that they may have been mixed and reported as "Z. nutricula" since the 19th century.

  9. The structured diversity of specialized gut symbionts of the New World army ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Łukasik, Piotr; Newton, Justin A; Sanders, Jon G; Hu, Yi; Moreau, Corrie S; Kronauer, Daniel J C; O'Donnell, Sean; Koga, Ryuichi; Russell, Jacob A

    2017-04-10

    Symbiotic bacteria play important roles in the biology of their arthropod hosts. Yet the microbiota of many diverse and influential groups remain understudied, resulting in a paucity of information on the fidelities and histories of these associations. Motivated by prior findings from a smaller scale, 16S rRNA-based study, we conducted a broad phylogenetic and geographical survey of microbial communities in the ecologically dominant New World army ants (Formicidae: Dorylinae). Amplicon sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene across 28 species spanning the five New World genera showed that the microbial communities of army ants consist of very few common and abundant bacterial species. The two most abundant microbes, referred to as Unclassified Firmicutes and Unclassified Entomoplasmatales, appear to be specialized army ant associates that dominate microbial communities in the gut lumen of three host genera, Eciton, Labidus, and Nomamyrmex. Both are present in other army ant genera, including those from the Old World, suggesting that army ant symbioses date back to the Cretaceous. Extensive sequencing of bacterial protein-coding genes revealed multiple strains of these symbionts co-existing within colonies, but seldom within the same individual ant. Bacterial strains formed multiple host species-specific lineages on phylogenies, which often grouped strains from distant geographic locations. These patterns deviate from those seen in other social insects and raise intriguing questions about the influence of army ant colony swarm-founding and within-colony genetic diversity on strain co-existence, and the effects of hosting a diverse suite of symbiont strains on colony ecology. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  10. Bacterial gut symbionts contribute to seed digestion in an omnivorous beetle.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan G Lundgren

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Obligate bacterial symbionts alter the diets of host animals in numerous ways, but the ecological roles of facultative bacterial residents that colonize insect guts remain unclear. Carabid beetles are a common group of beneficial insects appreciated for their ability to consume insect prey and seeds, but the contributions of microbes to diet diversification in this and similar groups of facultative granivores are largely unknown. METHODOLOGY AND PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using 16S rRNA gene clone libraries and terminal restriction fragment (tRF length polymorphism analyses of these genes, we examined the bacterial communities within the guts of facultatively granivorous, adult Harpalus pensylvanicus (Carabidae, fed one of five dietary treatments: 1 an untreated Field population, 2 Seeds with antibiotics (seeds were from Chenopodium album, 3 Seeds without antibiotics, 4 Prey with antibiotics (prey were Acheta domesticus eggs, and 5 Prey without antibiotics. The number of seeds and prey consumed by each beetle were recorded following treatment. Harpalus pensylvanicus possessed a fairly simple gut community of approximately 3-4 bacterial operational taxonomic units (OTU per beetle that were affiliated with the Gammaproteobacteria, Bacilli, Alphaproteobacteria, and Mollicutes. Bacterial communities of the host varied among the diet and antibiotic treatments. The field population and beetles fed seeds without antibiotics had the closest matching bacterial communities, and the communities in the beetles fed antibiotics were more closely related to each other than to those of the beetles that did not receive antibiotics. Antibiotics reduced and altered the bacterial communities found in the beetle guts. Moreover, beetles fed antibiotics ate fewer seeds, and those beetles that harbored the bacterium Enterococcus faecalis consumed more seeds on average than those lacking this symbiont. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We conclude that the relationships

  11. The effects of elevated seawater temperatures on Caribbean gorgonian corals and their algal symbionts, Symbiodinium spp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goulet, Tamar L.; Shirur, Kartick P.; Ramsby, Blake D.; Iglesias-Prieto, Roberto

    2017-01-01

    Global climate change not only leads to elevated seawater temperatures but also to episodic anomalously high or low temperatures lasting for several hours to days. Scleractinian corals are detrimentally affected by thermal fluctuations, which often lead to an uncoupling of their mutualism with Symbiodinium spp. (coral bleaching) and potentially coral death. Consequently, on many Caribbean reefs scleractinian coral cover has plummeted. Conversely, gorgonian corals persist, with their abundance even increasing. How gorgonians react to thermal anomalies has been investigated utilizing limited parameters of either the gorgonian, Symbiodinium or the combined symbiosis (holobiont). We employed a holistic approach to examine the effect of an experimental five-day elevated temperature episode on parameters of the host, symbiont, and the holobiont in Eunicea tourneforti, E. flexuosa and Pseudoplexaura porosa. These gorgonian corals reacted and coped with 32°C seawater temperatures. Neither Symbiodinium genotypes nor densities differed between the ambient 29.5°C and 32°C. Chlorophyll a and c2 per Symbiodinium cell, however, were lower at 32°C leading to a reduction in chlorophyll content in the branches and an associated reduction in estimated absorbance and increase in the chlorophyll a specific absorption coefficient. The adjustments in the photochemical parameters led to changes in photochemical efficiencies, although these too showed that the gorgonians were coping. For example, the maximum excitation pressure, Qm, was significantly lower at 32°C than at 29.5°C. In addition, although per dry weight the amount of protein and lipids were lower at 32°C, the overall energy content in the tissues did not differ between the temperatures. Antioxidant activity either remained the same or increased following exposure to 32°C further reiterating a response that dealt with the stressor. Taken together, the capability of Caribbean gorgonian corals to modify symbiont, host

  12. A Phase-Variable Surface Layer from the Gut Symbiont Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taketani, Mao; Donia, Mohamed S; Jacobson, Amy N; Lambris, John D; Fischbach, Michael A

    2015-09-29

    The capsule from Bacteroides, a common gut symbiont, has long been a model system for studying the molecular mechanisms of host-symbiont interactions. The Bacteroides capsule is thought to consist of an array of phase-variable polysaccharides that give rise to subpopulations with distinct cell surface structures. Here, we report the serendipitous discovery of a previously unknown surface structure in Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron: a surface layer composed of a protein of unknown function, BT1927. BT1927, which is expressed in a phase-variable manner by ~1:1,000 cells in a wild-type culture, forms a hexagonally tessellated surface layer. The BT1927-expressing subpopulation is profoundly resistant to complement-mediated killing, due in part to the BT1927-mediated blockade of C3b deposition. Our results show that the Bacteroides surface structure is capable of a far greater degree of structural variation than previously known, and they suggest that structural variation within a Bacteroides species is important for productive gut colonization. Many bacterial species elaborate a capsule, a structure that resides outside the cell wall and mediates microbe-microbe and microbe-host interactions. Species of Bacteroides, the most abundant genus in the human gut, produce a capsule that consists of an array of polysaccharides, some of which are known to mediate interactions with the host immune system. Here, we report the discovery of a previously unknown surface structure in Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron. We show that this protein-based structure is expressed by a subset of cells in a population and protects Bacteroides from killing by complement, a component of the innate immune system. This novel surface layer protein is conserved across many species of the genus Bacteroides, suggesting an important role in colonization and host immune modulation. Copyright © 2015 Taketani et al.

  13. Differential effects of copper on three species of scleractinian corals and their algal symbionts (Symbiodinium spp.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bielmyer, G K; Grosell, M; Bhagooli, R; Baker, A C; Langdon, C; Gillette, P; Capo, T R

    2010-04-15

    Land-based sources of pollution have been identified as significant stressors linked to the widespread declines of coral cover in coastal reef ecosystems over the last 30 years. Metal contaminants, although noted as a concern, have not been closely monitored in these sensitive ecosystems, nor have their potential impacts on coral-algal symbioses been characterized. In this study, three species of laboratory-reared scleractinian corals, Acropora cervicornis, Pocillopora damicornis, and Montastraea faveolata each containing different algal symbionts (Symbiodinium A3, C1 and D1a, respectively) were exposed to copper (ranging from 2 to 20microg/L) for 5 weeks. At the end of the exposure period, copper had accumulated in the endosymbiotic dinoflagellate ("zooxanthellae") and animal tissue of A. cervicornis and the animal tissue of M. faveolata; however, no copper accumulation was detected in the zooxanthellae or animal tissue of P. damicornis. The three coral species exhibited significantly different sensitivities to copper, with effects occurring in A. cervicornis and P. damicornis at copper concentrations as low as 4microg/L. Copper exposure affected zooxanthellae photosynthesis in A. cervicornis and P. damicornis, and carbonic anhydrase was significantly decreased in A. cervicornis and M. faveolata. Likewise, significant decreases in skeletal growth were observed in A. cervicornis and P. damicornis after copper exposure. Based on preliminary results, no changes in Symbiodinium communities were apparent in response to increasing copper concentration. These results indicate that the relationships between physiological/toxicological endpoints and copper accumulation between coral species differ, suggesting different mechanisms of toxicity and/or susceptibility. This may be driven, in part, by differences in the algal symbiont communities of the coral species in question.

  14. Burkholderia spp. are the most competitive symbionts of Mimosa, particularly under N-limited conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elliott, Geoffrey N; Chou, Jui-Hsing; Chen, Wen-Ming; Bloemberg, Guido V; Bontemps, Cyril; Martínez-Romero, Esperanza; Velázquez, Encarna; Young, J Peter W; Sprent, Janet I; James, Euan K

    2009-04-01

    Bacteria isolated from Mimosa nodules in Taiwan, Papua New Guinea, Mexico and Puerto Rico were identified as belonging to either the alpha- or beta-proteobacteria. The beta-proteobacterial Burkholderia and Cupriavidus strains formed effective symbioses with the common invasive species Mimosa diplotricha, M. pigra and M. pudica, but the alpha-proteobacterial Rhizobium etli and R. tropici strains produced a range of symbiotic phenotypes from no nodulation through ineffective to effective nodulation, depending on Mimosa species. Competition studies were performed between three of the alpha-proteobacteria (R. etli TJ167, R. tropici NGR181 and UPRM8021) and two of the beta-rhizobial symbionts (Burkholderia mimosarum PAS44 and Cupriavidus taiwanensis LMG19424) for nodulation of these invasive Mimosa species. Under flooded conditions, B. mimosarum PAS44 out-competed LMG19424 and all three alpha-proteobacteria to the point of exclusion. This advantage was not explained by initial inoculum levels, rates of bacterial growth, rhizobia-rhizobia growth inhibition or individual nodulation rate. However, the competitive domination of PAS44 over LMG19424 was reduced in the presence of nitrate for all three plant hosts. The largest significant effect was for M. pudica, in which LMG19424 formed 57% of the nodules in the presence of 0.5 mM potassium nitrate. In this host, ammonium also had a similar, but lesser, effect. Comparable results were also found using an N-containing soil mixture, and environmental N levels are therefore suggested as a factor in the competitive success of the bacterial symbiont in vivo.

  15. Changes of AM fungal abundance along environmental gradients in the arid and semi-arid grasslands of northern China.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yajun Hu

    Full Text Available Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM fungi are ubiquitous symbionts of higher plants in terrestrial ecosystems, while the occurrence of the AM symbiosis is influenced by a complex set of abiotic and biotic factors. To reveal the regional distribution pattern of AM fungi as driven by multiple environmental factors, and to understand the ecological importance of AM fungi in natural ecosystems, we conducted a field investigation on AM fungal abundance along environmental gradients in the arid and semi-arid grasslands of northern China. In addition to plant parameters recorded in situ, soil samples were collected, and soil chemo-physical and biological parameters were measured in the lab. Statistical analyses were performed to reveal the relative contribution of climatic, edaphic and vegetation factors to AM fungal abundance, especially for extraradical hyphal length density (HLD in the soil. The results indicated that HLD were positively correlated with mean annual temperature (MAT, soil clay content and soil pH, but negatively correlated with both soil organic carbon (SOC and soil available N. The multiple regressions and structural equation model showed that MAT was the key positive contributor and soil fertility was the key negative contributor to HLD. Furthermore, both the intraradical AM colonization (IMC and relative abundance of AM fungi, which was quantified by real-time PCR assay, tended to decrease along the increasing SOC content. With regard to the obvious negative correlation between MAT and SOC in the research area, the positive correlation between MAT and HLD implied that AM fungi could potentially mitigate soil carbon losses especially in infertile soils under global warming. However, direct evidence from long-term experiments is still expected to support the AM fungal contribution to soil carbon pools.

  16. Changes of AM fungal abundance along environmental gradients in the arid and semi-arid grasslands of northern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Yajun; Rillig, Matthias C; Xiang, Dan; Hao, Zhipeng; Chen, Baodong

    2013-01-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi are ubiquitous symbionts of higher plants in terrestrial ecosystems, while the occurrence of the AM symbiosis is influenced by a complex set of abiotic and biotic factors. To reveal the regional distribution pattern of AM fungi as driven by multiple environmental factors, and to understand the ecological importance of AM fungi in natural ecosystems, we conducted a field investigation on AM fungal abundance along environmental gradients in the arid and semi-arid grasslands of northern China. In addition to plant parameters recorded in situ, soil samples were collected, and soil chemo-physical and biological parameters were measured in the lab. Statistical analyses were performed to reveal the relative contribution of climatic, edaphic and vegetation factors to AM fungal abundance, especially for extraradical hyphal length density (HLD) in the soil. The results indicated that HLD were positively correlated with mean annual temperature (MAT), soil clay content and soil pH, but negatively correlated with both soil organic carbon (SOC) and soil available N. The multiple regressions and structural equation model showed that MAT was the key positive contributor and soil fertility was the key negative contributor to HLD. Furthermore, both the intraradical AM colonization (IMC) and relative abundance of AM fungi, which was quantified by real-time PCR assay, tended to decrease along the increasing SOC content. With regard to the obvious negative correlation between MAT and SOC in the research area, the positive correlation between MAT and HLD implied that AM fungi could potentially mitigate soil carbon losses especially in infertile soils under global warming. However, direct evidence from long-term experiments is still expected to support the AM fungal contribution to soil carbon pools.

  17. Burden of serious fungal infections in Belgium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lagrou, Katrien; Maertens, Johan; Van Even, Ellen; Denning, David W

    2015-10-01

    We aimed to estimate the total number of serious fungal infections occurring yearly in Belgium. The number of cryptococcal infections was retrieved from the National Reference Center for Mycosis. Populations at risk and fungal infections frequencies in these populations were used to estimate incidence or prevalence of other fungal infections. The Belgian population consists of 11.10 million people. Cryptococcal meningitis is rare. In all, 15 of the 1227 newly diagnosed HIV/AIDS cases presented with Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonia. This accounts for ±14% of total PCP cases (n = 120). The incidence of candidaemia is estimated as 5/100,000 resulting in 555 cases and 213 deaths. A total number of 675 invasive aspergillosis cases and ≥169 deaths attributed to this infection were calculated. Chronic pulmonary aspergillosis is estimated to be prevalent in 662 cases. Allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis cases were estimated to be 23,119 applying a 2.5% and 15% rate in adult asthma and cystic fibrosis patients respectively. Severe asthma with fungal sensitisation cases was estimated to be 30,402. There were 174,760 women with recurrent Candida vaginitis assuming a 6% rate in women aged between 15 and 50. Approximately 233,000 people of the Belgian population (2.1%) are estimated to suffer from a fungal infection on a yearly basis.

  18. Burden of fungal infections in Algeria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chekiri-Talbi, M; Denning, D W

    2017-02-21

    We report for the first time in Algeria and provide burden estimates. We searched for existing data and estimated the incidence and prevalence of fungal diseases based on the population at risk and available epidemiological data. Demographic data were derived from the National Office of Statistics (Office National des Statistiques: ONS), World Health Organization (WHO), The Joint Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and national published reports. When no data existed, risk populations were used to estimate frequencies of fungal infections, using previously described methodology. Algeria has 40.4 million inhabitants, and probably at least 568,900 (1.41%) of Algerians have a serious fungal infection each year. Recurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis (485,000) and fungal asthma (72,000) are probably the commonest problems, as there are over 1 million adult asthmatics. Candidaemia is estimated in 2,020 people, invasive aspergillosis in 2,865 people, and intra-abdominal candidiasis in 303 people; these are the most common life-threatening problems. AIDS is uncommon, but cancer is not (45,000 new cases of cancer including 1,500 in children), nor is COPD (an estimated 317,762 patients, of whom 20.3% are admitted to hospital each year). A focus on improving the diagnosis and epidemiological data related to fungal infection is necessary in Algeria.

  19. Fungal infections in severe acute pancreatitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kochhar, Rakesh; Noor, Mohd Talha; Wig, Jaidev

    2011-06-01

    Severe acute pancreatitis (SAP) is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. The majority of deaths related to SAP are the result of infectious complications. Although bacterial infections are most commonly encountered, fungal infections are increasingly being recognized. Candida is the most common fungal infection. The occurrence of fungal infection in patients with acute pancreatitis adversely affects the clinical course, leading to a higher incidence of systemic complications, and possibly mortality as well. Important risk factors for fungal infection in patients with acute pancreatitis include broad-spectrum antibiotics, prolonged hospitalization and surgical/endoscopic interventions, use of total parenteral nutrition, and mechanical ventilation. Patients with higher severity of pancreatitis are at a greater risk. The pathogenesis of fungal infection in patients with acute pancreatitis is multifactorial. Translocation of microorganisms across the gut epithelium, lymphocyte dysfunction, and the virulence of the invading microorganisms play important roles. Histological demonstration of fungi remains the gold standard of diagnosis, but a positive biopsy is rarely obtained. The role of biomarkers in the diagnosis is being investigated. As early diagnosis and treatment can lead to improved outcome, a high index of suspicion is required for prompt diagnosis. Limiting the use of broad-spectrum antibiotics, early introduction of enteral nutrition, and timely change of vascular catheters are important preventive strategies. The role of antifungal prophylaxis remains controversial. Surgical necrosectomy with antifungal therapy is the most widely used treatment approach. Clinical trials on antifungal prophylaxis are needed, and indications for surgical intervention need to be clearly defined.

  20. Fungal endophytes: modifiers of plant disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Busby, Posy E; Ridout, Mary; Newcombe, George

    2016-04-01

    Many recent studies have demonstrated that non-pathogenic fungi within plant microbiomes, i.e., endophytes ("endo" = within, "phyte" = plant), can significantly modify the expression of host plant disease. The rapid pace of advancement in endophyte ecology warrants a pause to synthesize our understanding of endophyte disease modification and to discuss future research directions. We reviewed recent literature on fungal endophyte disease modification, and here report on several emergent themes: (1) Fungal endophyte effects on plant disease span the full spectrum from pathogen antagonism to pathogen facilitation, with pathogen antagonism most commonly reported. (2) Agricultural plant pathosystems are the focus of research on endophyte disease modification. (3) A taxonomically diverse group of fungal endophytes can influence plant disease severity. And (4) Fungal endophyte effects on plant disease severity are context-dependent. Our review highlights the importance of fungal endophytes for plant disease across a broad range of plant pathosystems, yet simultaneously reveals that complexity within plant microbiomes presents a significant challenge to disentangling the biotic environmental factors affecting plant disease severity. Manipulative studies integrating eco-evolutionary approaches with emerging molecular tools will be poised to elucidate the functional importance of endophytes in natural plant pathosystems that are fundamental to biodiversity and conservation.

  1. [Pulmonary fungal infection in patients with AIDS].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denis, B; Lortholary, O

    2013-10-01

    Fungal infections are the most common opportunistic infections (OI) occurring during the course of HIV infection, though their incidence has decreased dramatically with the introduction of highly active antiretroviral therapy (cART). Most cases occur in untreated patients, noncompliant patients or patients whose multiple antiretroviral regimens have failed and they are a good marker of the severity of cellular immunodepression. Pneumocystis jiroveci pneumonia is the second most frequent OI in France and cryptococcosis remains a major problem in the Southern Hemisphere. With the increase in travel, imported endemic fungal infection can occur and may mimic other infections, notably tuberculosis. Fungal infections often have a pulmonary presentation but an exhaustive search for dissemination should be made in patients infected with HIV, at least those at an advanced stage of immune deficiency. Introduction of cART in combination with anti-fungal treatment depends on the risk of AIDS progression and on the risk of cumulative toxicity and the immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome (IRIS) if introduced too early. Fungal infections in HIV infected patients remain a problem in the cART era. IRIS can complicate the management and requires an optimised treatment regime. Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS.

  2. Fungal keratitis associated with ocular rosacea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, Vandana; Shome, Debraj; Sajnani, Manoj; Natarajan, Sundaram

    2010-06-01

    In order to report fungal keratitis in patients of ocular rosacea, a retrospective review of all cases of fungal keratitis was undertaken. Cases in which ocular rosacea coexisted were identified and included in the study. The clinical course of patients thus identified was studied from the medical records and outcomes were evaluated. A total of three cases of fungal keratitis with coexisting ocular rosacea were identified. All three patients were known cases of acne rosacea with an intermittent, irregular treatment for the same. Previous history of contact lens use, ocular surgery or trauma was not present in any of the cases. Microbiological evaluation revealed Aspergillus flavus as the causative organism in two patients and an unidentified hyaline fungus in the third. Patients received simultaneous therapy for fungal keratitis and ocular rosacea. The ocular surface completely stabilized and the infiltrate resolved in all three cases. The chronic ocular surface changes and induced inflammation in ocular rosacea, along with the instillation of topical steroids for therapy, may create an environmental milieu favorable for fungal keratitis. Microbiological evaluation should be considered, even in cases of suspected sterile keratitis, prior to treatment with topical steroids, so as to prevent the possible worsening of an associated infective corneal condition.

  3. Fungal Involvement in Patients with Paranasal Sinusitis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P Kordbacheh

    2004-08-01

    Full Text Available Fungal involvement of the paranasal sinuses is frequently observed in the immunocompromised host and it can become lifethreatening if it is not diagnosed. Definitive diagnosis is made by tissue biopsy and culture. In this study biopsy materials of maxillary, ethmoidal and frontal sinuses of 60 patients with clinical manifestation of sinusitis and no response to medical therapy were assessed by mycological and pathological methods for the presence of fungi. Invasive fungal sinusitis was diagnosed in 3 patients and etiologic agents were Candida albicans, Rhizopus sp. and Aspergillus fumigatus. Predisposing factors in these patients were leukemia, diabetes mellitus and previous sinus and polyp surgery, respectively. Allergic fungal sinusitis also was seen in one patient and Alternaria sp. isolated from the biopsy material. Only the patient with allergic form of disease survived but all the patients with invasive form of fungal infection were expired. This clearly underscores the need of early recognition of fungal sinusitis in at risk population in order to start urgent treatment. In this study Nocardia asteroids also was isolated from the biopsy sample in a patient with sinunasal adenocarcinoma.

  4. Modelling combat strategies in fungal mycelia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boswell, Graeme P

    2012-07-07

    Fungal mycelia have a well-established role in nutrient cycling and are widely used as agents in biological control and in the remediation of polluted landscapes. Competition and combat between different fungal communities is common in these contexts and its outcome impacts on local biodiversity and the success of such biotechnological applications. In this investigation a mathematical model representing mycelia as a system of partial differential equations is used to simulate combat between two fungal colonies growing into a nutrient-free domain. The resultant equations are integrated numerically and the model simulates well-established outcomes of combat between fungal communities. The outcome of pairwise combat is shown to depend on numerous factors including the suppression of advancing hyphae in rivals, the degradation of a rival's established biomass and the utilization and redistribution of available nutrient resources. It is demonstrated how non-transitive hierarchies in fungal communities can be established through switching mechanisms, mirroring observations reported in experimental studies, and how specialized defensive structures can emerge through changes in the redistribution of internal resources.

  5. Phylogenetic analysis of fungal ABC transporters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Driessen Arnold JM

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The superfamily of ABC proteins is among the largest known in nature. Its members are mainly, but not exclusively, involved in the transport of a broad range of substrates across biological membranes. Many contribute to multidrug resistance in microbial pathogens and cancer cells. The diversity of ABC proteins in fungi is comparable with those in multicellular animals, but so far fungal ABC proteins have barely been studied. Results We performed a phylogenetic analysis of the ABC proteins extracted from the genomes of 27 fungal species from 18 orders representing 5 fungal phyla thereby covering the most important groups. Our analysis demonstrated that some of the subfamilies of ABC proteins remained highly conserved in fungi, while others have undergone a remarkable group-specific diversification. Members of the various fungal phyla also differed significantly in the number of ABC proteins found in their genomes, which is especially reduced in the yeast S. cerevisiae and S. pombe. Conclusions Data obtained during our analysis should contribute to a better understanding of the diversity of the fungal ABC proteins and provide important clues about their possible biological functions.

  6. isolation of symbionts and gc-ms analysis of lichens collected from ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    USER

    of Resorcinol, (a dye-producing compound) in Parmelia reticulata is a pointer to the various ways in which this lichen can be utilized in Nigeria for the production of dyes for use in the manufacturing ... rocks or trees and their colours can range from green .... pure preparation of fungal cells. .... Lichens Naturally Science and.

  7. Laccase detoxification mediates the nutritional alliance between leaf-cutting ants and fungus-garden symbionts

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    De Fine Licht, Henrik; Schiøtt, Morten; Rogowska-Wrzesinska, Adelina

    2013-01-01

    on the leaf pulp that the ants add to their gardens. This accurate deposition ensures that laccase activity is highest where new leaf material enters the fungus garden, but where fungal mycelium is too sparse to produce extracellular enzymes in sufficient quantities to detoxify phenolic compounds...

  8. A widespread plant-fungal-bacterial symbiosis promotes plant biodiversity, plant nutrition and seedling recruitment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Heijden, Marcel G A; de Bruin, Susanne; Luckerhoff, Ludo; van Logtestijn, Richard S P; Schlaeppi, Klaus

    2016-02-01

    Highly diverse microbial assemblages colonize plant roots. It is still poorly understood whether different members of this root microbiome act synergistically by supplying different services (for example, different limiting nutrients) to plants and plant communities. In order to test this, we manipulated the presence of two widespread plant root symbionts, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and nitrogen-fixing rhizobia bacteria in model grassland communities established in axenic microcosms. Here, we demonstrate that both symbionts complement each other resulting in increased plant diversity, enhanced seedling recruitment and improved nutrient acquisition compared with a single symbiont situation. Legume seedlings obtained up to 15-fold higher productivity if they formed an association with both symbionts, opposed to productivity they reached with only one symbiont. Our results reveal the importance of functional diversity of symbionts and demonstrate that different members of the root microbiome can complement each other in acquiring different limiting nutrients and in driving important ecosystem functions.

  9. Prospects for the development of fungal vaccines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deepe, G S

    1997-10-01

    In an era that emphasizes the term "cost-effective," vaccines are the ideal solution to preventing disease at a relatively low cost to society. Much of the previous emphasis has been on childhood scourges such as measles, mumps, rubella, poliomyelitis, and Haemophilus influenzae type b. The concept of vaccines for fungal diseases has had less impact because of the perceived limited problem. However, fungal diseases have become increasingly appreciated as serious medical problems that require recognition and aggressive management. The escalation in the incidence and prevalence of infection has prompted a renewed interest in vaccine development. Herein, I discuss the most recent developments in the search for vaccines to combat fungal infections. Investigators have discovered several inert substances from various fungi that can mediate protection in animal models. The next challenge will be to find the suitable mode of delivery for these immunogens.

  10. Marsupialized fungal mycetoma masquerading as conjunctival melanoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sayyad, Fouad E; Karp, Carol L; Wong, James R; Weiss, Matthew J; Bermudez-Magner, J Antonio; Dubovy, Sander

    2014-07-01

    To report a case of a fungal mass misdiagnosed as a pigmented conjunctival melanoma. Case report. A 38-year-old woman was referred for a pigmented conjunctival lesion that was diagnosed as a melanoma. She had a history of a scleral buckle in that eye for retinal detachment 2 years before presentation. Slit-lamp examination revealed a pigmented mass from the 11- to 2-o'clock position. This was noted to be imbricated within the invagination of a conjunctival fold from the previous surgery. The mass was removed, cultured, and confirmed to be a fungal infection from Scytalidium sp. Scleral buckles can cause folds in the conjunctiva, which can be foci for fungal infection.

  11. Immunological Consequences of Intestinal Fungal Dysbiosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wheeler, Matthew L; Limon, Jose J; Bar, Agnieszka S; Leal, Christian A; Gargus, Matthew; Tang, Jie; Brown, Jordan; Funari, Vincent A; Wang, Hanlin L; Crother, Timothy R; Arditi, Moshe; Underhill, David M; Iliev, Iliyan D

    2016-06-08

    Compared to bacteria, the role of fungi within the intestinal microbiota is poorly understood. In this study we investigated whether the presence of a "healthy" fungal community in the gut is important for modulating immune function. Prolonged oral treatment of mice with antifungal drugs resulted in increased disease severity in acute and chronic models of colitis, and also exacerbated the development of allergic airway disease. Microbiota profiling revealed restructuring of fungal and bacterial communities. Specifically, representation of Candida spp. was reduced, while Aspergillus, Wallemia, and Epicoccum spp. were increased. Oral supplementation with a mixture of three fungi found to expand during antifungal treatment (Aspergillus amstelodami, Epicoccum nigrum, and Wallemia sebi) was sufficient to recapitulate the exacerbating effects of antifungal drugs on allergic airway disease. Taken together, these results indicate that disruption of commensal fungal populations can influence local and peripheral immune responses and enhance relevant disease states.

  12. Overview: fungal infections in the transplant patient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fishman, J A

    2002-01-01

    Fungal infection remains a major hurdle in solid organ transplantation. A variety of new antifungal agents have become available and new diagnostic tools are in development. This conference was convened to review current approaches to the prevention and treatment of fungal infection in transplantation. Among the keys to successful management of fungal infection are identification of patients at risk for infection (stratification), eradication or control of established infection in advance of transplantation, the demonstration of cure by radiologic and histopathologic means, and the use of surgical debridement, reduction in immune suppression, and fungicidal therapies whenever possible. The absence of sensitive diagnostic tools and standardization of antifungal susceptibility testing for the filamentous fungi are identified as major impediments to care in this area.

  13. Evolutionary and structural diversity of fungal laccases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valderrama, Brenda; Oliver, Patricia; Medrano-Soto, Arturo; Vazquez-Duhalt, Rafael

    2003-01-01

    Fungal laccases have been extensively exploited for industrial purposes and there is a wealth of information available regarding their reaction mechanism, biological role and several molecular aspects, including cloning, heterologous expression and transcriptional analyses. Here we present the reconstruction of the fungal laccase loci evolution inferred from the comparative analysis of 48 different sequences. The topology of the phylogenetic trees indicate that a single monophyletic branch exists for fungal laccases and that laccase isozyme genes may have evolved independently, possibly through duplication-divergence events. Laccases are copper-containing enzymes generally identified by the utilization of substituted p-diphenol substrates. Interestingly, our approach permitted the assignment of two copper-containing oxidases, preliminarily catalogued as laccases, to a different evolutionary group, distantly related to the main branch of bona fide laccases.

  14. [Fungal infections in children with malignant disease].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michel, G

    2011-05-01

    Intensified chemotherapy and hematopoietic stem cell transplantation result in severe and prolonged granulocytopenia with an increased risk of invasive fungal infections. The major fungal species that cause serious infections in cancer patients are Candida species and Aspergillus species. The main features of Candida infection in this context are oropharyngeal candidiasis and Candida esophagitis, chronic disseminated candidiasis, also known as hepatosplenic candidiasis, and candidemia. Aspergillus can cause severe lung infection but also sinusal or CNS infection. Because invasive fungal infections are severe and often life-threatening, preventive and empirical managements have become standard practice. An increasing number of antifungal drugs is now available, notably lipid formulations of amphotericin B (liposomal amphotericin B), new azoles with broad spectrum of activity and echinocandin.

  15. Fungal infections in burns: Diagnosis and management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Capoor Malini

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Burn wound infection (BWI is a major public health problem and the most devastating form of trauma worldwide. Fungi cause BWI as part of monomicrobial or polymicrobial infection, fungaemia, rare aggressive soft tissue infection and as opportunistic infections. The risk factors for acquiring fungal infection in burns include age of burns, total burn size, body surface area (BSA (30-60%, full thickness burns, inhalational injury, prolonged hospital stay, late surgical excision, open dressing, artificial dermis, central venous catheters, antibiotics, steroid treatment, long-term artificial ventilation, fungal wound colonisation (FWC, hyperglycaemic episodes and other immunosuppressive disorders. Most of the fungal infections are missed owing to lack of clinical awareness and similar presentation as bacterial infection coupled with paucity of mycology laboratories. Expedient diagnosis and treatment of these mycoses can be life-saving as the mortality is otherwise very high. Emergence of resistance in non-albicans Candida spp., unusual yeasts and moulds in fungal BWI, leaves very few fungi susceptible to antifungal drugs, leaving many patients susceptible. There is a need to speciate fungi as far as the topical and systemic antifungal is concerned. Deep tissue biopsy and other relevant samples are processed by standard mycological procedures using direct microscopy, culture and histopathological examination. Patients with FWC should be treated by aggressive surgical debridement and, in the case of fungal wound infection (FWI, in addition to surgical debridement, an intravenous antifungal drug, most commonly amphotericin B or caspofungin, is prescribed followed by de-escalating with voriconazole or itraconazole, or fluconazole depending upon the species or antifungal susceptibility, if available. The propensity for fungal infection increases, the longer the wound is present. Therefore, the development of products to close the wound more rapidly

  16. Identification & Characterization of Fungal Ice Nucleation Proteins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheel, Jan Frederik; Kunert, Anna Theresa; Kampf, Christopher Johannes; Mauri, Sergio; Weidner, Tobias; Pöschl, Ulrich; Fröhlich-Nowoisky, Janine

    2016-04-01

    Freezing of water at relatively warm subfreezing temperatures is dependent on ice nucleation catalysis facilitated by ice nuclei (IN). These IN can be of various origins and although extensive research was done and progress was achieved, the nature and mechanisms leading to an effective IN are to date still poorly understood. Some of the most important processes of our geosphere like the water cycle are highly dependent on effective ice nucleation at temperatures between -2°C - -8°C, a temperature range which is almost exclusively covered by biological IN (BioIN). BioIN are usually macromolecular structures of biological polymers. Sugars as well as proteins have been reported to serve as IN and the best characterized BioIN are ice nucleation proteins (IN-P) from gram negative bacteria. Fungal strains from Fusarium spp. were described to be effective IN at subfreezing temperatures up to -2°C already 25 years ago and more and more fungal species are described to serve as efficient IN. Fungal IN are also thought to be proteins or at least contain a proteinaceous compound, but to date the fungal IN-P primary structure as well as their coding genetic elements of all IN active fungi are unknown. The aim of this study is a.) to identify the proteins and their coding genetic elements from IN active fungi (F. acuminatum, F. avenaceum, M. alpina) and b.) to characterize the mechanisms by which fungal IN serve as effective IN. We designed an interdisciplinary approach using biological, analytical and physical methods to identify fungal IN-P and describe their biological, chemical, and physical properties.

  17. Fractal dimension based corneal fungal infection diagnosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balasubramanian, Madhusudhanan; Perkins, A. Louise; Beuerman, Roger W.; Iyengar, S. Sitharama

    2006-08-01

    We present a fractal measure based pattern classification algorithm for automatic feature extraction and identification of fungus associated with an infection of the cornea of the eye. A white-light confocal microscope image of suspected fungus exhibited locally linear and branching structures. The pixel intensity variation across the width of a fungal element was gaussian. Linear features were extracted using a set of 2D directional matched gaussian-filters. Portions of fungus profiles that were not in the same focal plane appeared relatively blurred. We use gaussian filters of standard deviation slightly larger than the width of a fungus to reduce discontinuities. Cell nuclei of cornea and nerves also exhibited locally linear structure. Cell nuclei were excluded by their relatively shorter lengths. Nerves in the cornea exhibited less branching compared with the fungus. Fractal dimensions of the locally linear features were computed using a box-counting method. A set of corneal images with fungal infection was used to generate class-conditional fractal measure distributions of fungus and nerves. The a priori class-conditional densities were built using an adaptive-mixtures method to reflect the true nature of the feature distributions and improve the classification accuracy. A maximum-likelihood classifier was used to classify the linear features extracted from test corneal images as 'normal' or 'with fungal infiltrates', using the a priori fractal measure distributions. We demonstrate the algorithm on the corneal images with culture-positive fungal infiltrates. The algorithm is fully automatic and will help diagnose fungal keratitis by generating a diagnostic mask of locations of the fungal infiltrates.

  18. Fungal infections of the lung in children