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Sample records for genetics microbial

  1. Microbial diversity--insights from population genetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mes, Ted H M

    2008-01-01

    Although many environmental microbial populations are large and genetically diverse, both the level of diversity and the extent to which it is ecologically relevant remain enigmatic. Because the effective (or long-term) population size, N(e), is one of the parameters that determines population genetic diversity, tests and simulations that assume selectively neutral mutations may help to identify the processes that have shaped microbial diversity. Using ecologically important genes, tests of selective neutrality suggest that adaptive as well as non-adaptive types of selection act and that departure from neutrality may be widespread or restricted to small groups of genotypes. Population genetic simulations using population sizes between 10(3) and 10(7) suggest extremely high levels of microbial diversity in environments that sustain large populations. However, census and effective population sizes may differ considerably, and because we know nothing of the evolutionary history of environmental microbial populations, we also have no idea what N(e) of environmental populations is. On the one hand, this reflects our ignorance of the microbial world. On the other hand, the tests and simulations illustrate interactions between microbial diversity and microbial population genetics that should inform our thinking in microbial ecology. Because of the different views on microbial diversity across these disciplines, such interactions are crucial if we are to understand the role of genes in microbial communities.

  2. GENMAP--A Microbial Genetics Computer Simulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Day, M. J.; And Others

    1985-01-01

    An interactive computer program in microbial genetics is described. The simulation allows students to work at their own pace and develop understanding of microbial techniques as they choose donor bacterial strains, specify selective media, and interact with demonstration experiments. Sample questions and outputs are included. (DH)

  3. Microbial diversity - insights from population genetics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mes, T.H.M.

    2008-01-01

    Although many environmental microbial populations are large and genetically diverse, both the level of diversity and the extent to which it is ecologically relevant remain enigmatic. Because the effective (or long-term) population size, Ne, is one of the parameters that determines population genetic

  4. Applying landscape genetics to the microbial world.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dudaniec, Rachael Y; Tesson, Sylvie V M

    2016-07-01

    Landscape genetics, which explicitly quantifies landscape effects on gene flow and adaptation, has largely focused on macroorganisms, with little attention given to microorganisms. This is despite overwhelming evidence that microorganisms exhibit spatial genetic structuring in relation to environmental variables. The increasing accessibility of genomic data has opened up the opportunity for landscape genetics to embrace the world of microorganisms, which may be thought of as 'the invisible regulators' of the macroecological world. Recent developments in bioinformatics and increased data accessibility have accelerated our ability to identify microbial taxa and characterize their genetic diversity. However, the influence of the landscape matrix and dynamic environmental factors on microorganism genetic dispersal and adaptation has been little explored. Also, because many microorganisms coinhabit or codisperse with macroorganisms, landscape genomic approaches may improve insights into how micro- and macroorganisms reciprocally interact to create spatial genetic structure. Conducting landscape genetic analyses on microorganisms requires that we accommodate shifts in spatial and temporal scales, presenting new conceptual and methodological challenges not yet explored in 'macro'-landscape genetics. We argue that there is much value to be gained for microbial ecologists from embracing landscape genetic approaches. We provide a case for integrating landscape genetic methods into microecological studies and discuss specific considerations associated with the novel challenges this brings. We anticipate that microorganism landscape genetic studies will provide new insights into both micro- and macroecological processes and expand our knowledge of species' distributions, adaptive mechanisms and species' interactions in changing environments.

  5. Genetic engineering of microbial pesticides

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruce C. Carlton

    1985-01-01

    Recent advances in genetics and molecular biology make possible the cloning and genetic manipulation of genes for insecticidal activities from natural insect pathogens. Using recombinant DNA methods and site-directed mutagenesis of specific gene regions, production of new and improved biorationals should be possible.

  6. Research advances on microbial genetics in China in 2015.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jianping, Xie; Yubo, Han; Gang, Liu; Linquan, Bai

    2016-09-01

    In 2015, there are significant progresses in many aspects of the microbial genetics in China. To showcase the contribution of Chinese scientists in microbial genetics, this review surveys several notable progresses in microbial genetics made largely by Chinese scientists, and some key findings are highlighted. For the basic microbial genetics, the components, structures and functions of many macromolecule complexes involved in gene expression regulation have been elucidated. Moreover, the molecular basis underlying the recognition of foreign nucleic acids by microbial immune systems was unveiled. We also illustrated the biosynthetic pathways and regulators of multiple microbial compounds, novel enzyme reactions, and new mechanisms regulating microbial gene expression. And new findings were obtained in the microbial development, evolution and population genetics. For the industrial microbiology, more understanding on the molecular basis of the microbial factory has been gained. For the pathogenic microbiology, the genetic circuits of several pathogens were depicted, and significant progresses were achieved for understanding the pathogen-host interaction and revealing the genetic mechanisms underlying antimicrobial resistance, emerging pathogens and environmental microorganisms at the genomic level. In future, the genetic diversity of microbes can be used to obtain specific products, while gut microbiome is gathering momentum.

  7. Microbial biofilms: from ecology to molecular genetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davey, M E; O'toole, G A

    2000-12-01

    Biofilms are complex communities of microorganisms attached to surfaces or associated with interfaces. Despite the focus of modern microbiology research on pure culture, planktonic (free-swimming) bacteria, it is now widely recognized that most bacteria found in natural, clinical, and industrial settings persist in association with surfaces. Furthermore, these microbial communities are often composed of multiple species that interact with each other and their environment. The determination of biofilm architecture, particularly the spatial arrangement of microcolonies (clusters of cells) relative to one another, has profound implications for the function of these complex communities. Numerous new experimental approaches and methodologies have been developed in order to explore metabolic interactions, phylogenetic groupings, and competition among members of the biofilm. To complement this broad view of biofilm ecology, individual organisms have been studied using molecular genetics in order to identify the genes required for biofilm development and to dissect the regulatory pathways that control the plankton-to-biofilm transition. These molecular genetic studies have led to the emergence of the concept of biofilm formation as a novel system for the study of bacterial development. The recent explosion in the field of biofilm research has led to exciting progress in the development of new technologies for studying these communities, advanced our understanding of the ecological significance of surface-attached bacteria, and provided new insights into the molecular genetic basis of biofilm development.

  8. Microbial Biofilms: from Ecology to Molecular Genetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davey, Mary Ellen; O'toole, George A.

    2000-01-01

    Biofilms are complex communities of microorganisms attached to surfaces or associated with interfaces. Despite the focus of modern microbiology research on pure culture, planktonic (free-swimming) bacteria, it is now widely recognized that most bacteria found in natural, clinical, and industrial settings persist in association with surfaces. Furthermore, these microbial communities are often composed of multiple species that interact with each other and their environment. The determination of biofilm architecture, particularly the spatial arrangement of microcolonies (clusters of cells) relative to one another, has profound implications for the function of these complex communities. Numerous new experimental approaches and methodologies have been developed in order to explore metabolic interactions, phylogenetic groupings, and competition among members of the biofilm. To complement this broad view of biofilm ecology, individual organisms have been studied using molecular genetics in order to identify the genes required for biofilm development and to dissect the regulatory pathways that control the plankton-to-biofilm transition. These molecular genetic studies have led to the emergence of the concept of biofilm formation as a novel system for the study of bacterial development. The recent explosion in the field of biofilm research has led to exciting progress in the development of new technologies for studying these communities, advanced our understanding of the ecological significance of surface-attached bacteria, and provided new insights into the molecular genetic basis of biofilm development. PMID:11104821

  9. GENETIC ENGINEERING OF ENHANCED MICROBIAL NITRIFICATION

    Science.gov (United States)

    Experiments were conducted to introduce genetic information in the form of antibiotic or mercuric ion resistance genes into Nitrobacter hamburgensis strain X14. The resistance genes were either stable components of broad host range plasmids or transposable genes on methods for p...

  10. Investigation of Web Mining Optimization Using Microbial Genetic Algorithm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dipali Tungar

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available In today's modern internet era peopleneed searching on the web and finding relevant information on the web to be efficient and fast. But traditional search engines like Google suppose to be more intelligent, still use the traditional crawling algorithms to find data relevant to the search query. But most of the times it returns irrelevant data as well which becomes confusing for the user. In a normal XML data the user inputs the search query in terms of a keyword or a question and the answer to the search query should be more precise and more relevant. So, using the traditional crawling algorithms over XML data would lead to irrelevant results. Genetic algorithms are the modern algorithms which replicates the Darwinian theory of the natural evolution. The genetic algorithms are best suited for the traditional search problem as the genetic algorithms always tend to return quality as solution for any domain data. It would be a good approach to investigate how the genetic algorithms would be suitable for the search over the XML data of different domains. So, this system implements a steady state tournament selection Microbial Genetic Algorithm over the XML data of the different domains. This would be an investigation of how the genetic algorithm would return accurate results over XML data of different domains.

  11. How to Teach Procedures, Problem Solving, and Concepts in Microbial Genetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bainbridge, Brian W.

    1977-01-01

    Flow-diagrams, algorithms, decision logic tables, and concept maps are presented in detail as methods for teaching practical procedures, problem solving, and basic concepts in microbial genetics. It is suggested that the flexible use of these methods should lead to an improved understanding of microbial genetics. (Author/MA)

  12. The impact of genetically modified crops on soil microbial communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giovannetti, Manuela; Sbrana, Cristiana; Turrini, Alessandra

    2005-01-01

    Genetically modified (GM) plants represent a potential benefit for environmentally friendly agriculture and human health. Though, poor knowledge is available on potential hazards posed by unintended modifications occurring during genetic manipulation. The increasing amount of reports on ecological risks and benefits of GM plants stresses the need for experimental works aimed at evaluating the impact of GM crops on natural and agro-ecosystems. Major environmental risks associated with GM crops include their potential impact on non-target soil microorganisms playing a fundamental role in crop residues degradation and in biogeochemical cycles. Recent works assessed the effects of GM crops on soil microbial communities on the basis of case-by-case studies, using multimodal experimental approaches involving different target and non-target organisms. Experimental evidences discussed in this review confirm that a precautionary approach should be adopted, by taking into account the risks associated with the unpredictability of transformation events, of their pleiotropic effects and of the fate of transgenes in natural and agro-ecosystems, weighing benefits against costs.

  13. Genetic dysbiosis: the role of microbial insults in chronic inflammatory diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luigi Nibali

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Thousands of bacterial phylotypes colonise the human body and the host response to this bacterial challenge greatly influences our state of health or disease. The concept of infectogenomics highlights the importance of host genetic factors in determining the composition of human microbial biofilms and the response to this microbial challenge. We hereby introduce the term ‘genetic dysbiosis’ to highlight the role of human genetic variants affecting microbial recognition and host response in creating an environment conducive to changes in the normal microbiota. Such changes can, in turn, predispose to, and influence, diseases such as: cancer, inflammatory bowel disease, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, bacterial vaginosis and periodontitis. This review presents the state of the evidence on host genetic factors affecting dysbiosis and microbial misrecognition (i.e. an aberrant response to the normal microbiota and highlights the need for further research in this area.

  14. Health considerations regarding horizontal transfer of microbial transgenes present in genetically modified crops

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kleter, G.A.; Peijnenburg, A.A.C.M.; Aarts, H.J.M.

    2005-01-01

    The potential effects of horizontal gene transfer on human health are an important item in the safety assessment of genetically modified organisms. Horizontal gene transfer from genetically modified crops to gut microflora most likely occurs with transgenes of microbial origin. The characteristics o

  15. Governing the management and use of pooled microbial genetic resources: Lessons from the global crop commons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Halewood

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper highlights lessons learned over the last thirty years establishing a governance structure for the global crop commons that are of relevance to current champions of the microbial commons. It argues that the political, legal and biophysical situation in which microbial genetic resources (and their users are located today are similar to the situation of plant genetic resources in the mid-1990s, before the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources was negotiated. Consequently, the paper suggests that it may be useful to look to the model of global network of ex situ plant genetic resources collections as a precedent to follow – even if only loosely – in developing an intergovernmentally endorsed legal substructure and governance framework for the microbial commons.

  16. Effect of wildfires on the genetic microbial diversity in forest soils from Canary Islands (Spain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Rodríguez

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Wildfires produce several ecological and environmental impacts on the physical and chemical soil characteristics, as well as on the properties and dynamics of soil microbial populations. Microorganisms are good indicators of ecosystem function and sustainability and therefore the studies about the impact of fire on microbial communities is relevant to understand the role of fire in ecosystem functioning. Although several authors have provided data about total microbial biomass and activity in soils affected by fires, there is little information about the composition and evolution of soil microbial populations after the passage of fire. In this work the effect of wildfires on the genetic diversity of microbial populations in soils from the island of Tenerife (Canary Islands, Spain is studied. The final objective was to get information about the recovery of soil functionality after wildfires.

  17. Role of Genomic Typing in Taxonomy, Evolutionary Genetics, and Microbial Epidemiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Belkum, Alex; Struelens, Marc; de Visser, Arjan; Verbrugh, Henri; Tibayrenc, Michel

    2001-01-01

    Currently, genetic typing of microorganisms is widely used in several major fields of microbiological research. Taxonomy, research aimed at elucidation of evolutionary dynamics or phylogenetic relationships, population genetics of microorganisms, and microbial epidemiology all rely on genetic typing data for discrimination between genotypes. Apart from being an essential component of these fundamental sciences, microbial typing clearly affects several areas of applied microbiogical research. The epidemiological investigation of outbreaks of infectious diseases and the measurement of genetic diversity in relation to relevant biological properties such as pathogenicity, drug resistance, and biodegradation capacities are obvious examples. The diversity among nucleic acid molecules provides the basic information for all fields described above. However, researchers in various disciplines tend to use different vocabularies, a wide variety of different experimental methods to monitor genetic variation, and sometimes widely differing modes of data processing and interpretation. The aim of the present review is to summarize the technological and fundamental concepts used in microbial taxonomy, evolutionary genetics, and epidemiology. Information on the nomenclature used in the different fields of research is provided, descriptions of the diverse genetic typing procedures are presented, and examples of both conceptual and technological research developments for Escherichia coli are included. Recommendations for unification of the different fields through standardization of laboratory techniques are made. PMID:11432813

  18. Use of Computer Simulations in Microbial and Molecular Genetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, Peter

    1984-01-01

    Describes five computer programs: four simulations of genetic and physical mapping experiments and one interactive learning program on the genetic coding mechanism. The programs were originally written in BASIC for the VAX-11/750 V.3. mainframe computer and have been translated into Applesoft BASIC for Apple IIe microcomputers. (JN)

  19. MILLIMETER-SCALE GENETIC GRADIENTS AND COMMUNITY-LEVEL MOLECULAR CONVERGENCE IN A HYPERSALINE MICROBIAL MAT

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fenner, Marsha W; Kunin, Victor; Raes, Jeroen; Harris, J. Kirk; Spear, John R.; Walker, Jeffrey J.; Ivanova, Natalia; Mering, Christian von; Bebout, Brad M.; Pace, Norman R.; Bork, Peer; Hugenholtz, Philip

    2008-04-30

    To investigate the extent of genetic stratification in structured microbial communities, we compared the metagenomes of 10 successive layers of a phylogenetically complex hypersaline mat from Guerrero Negro, Mexico. We found pronounced millimeter-scale genetic gradients that are consistent with the physicochemical profile of the mat. Despite these gradients, all layers displayed near identical and acid-shifted isoelectric point profiles due to a molecular convergence of amino acid usage indicating that hypersalinity enforces an overriding selective pressure on the mat community.

  20. Genetic Diversity Affects the Daily Transcriptional Oscillations of Marine Microbial Populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shilova, Irina N; Robidart, Julie C; DeLong, Edward F; Zehr, Jonathan P

    2016-01-01

    Marine microbial communities are genetically diverse but have robust synchronized daily transcriptional patterns at the genus level that are similar across a wide variety of oceanic regions. We developed a microarray-inspired gene-centric approach to resolve transcription of closely-related but distinct strains/ecotypes in high-throughput sequence data. Applying this approach to the existing metatranscriptomics datasets collected from two different oceanic regions, we found unique and variable patterns of transcription by individual taxa within the abundant picocyanobacteria Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus, the alpha Proteobacterium Pelagibacter and the eukaryotic picophytoplankton Ostreococcus. The results demonstrate that marine microbial taxa respond differentially to variability in space and time in the ocean. These intra-genus individual transcriptional patterns underlie whole microbial community responses, and the approach developed here facilitates deeper insights into microbial population dynamics.

  1. Computer Simulation of a Microbial Genetics Experiment as a Learning Aid for Undergraduate Teaching.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Day, M. J.; And Others

    1983-01-01

    Reports design of an interactive computer program (FORTRAN) in microbial genetics. The program is divided into three stages: background information, simulation, and data treatment. Results obtained from the simulation allow four genes to be sequenced along the bacterial chromosome. The simulation mimics experimental errors and production of…

  2. Host genetics is associated with the gut microbial community membership rather than the structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Peihua; Irwin, David M; Dong, Dong

    2016-04-26

    The issue of what factors shape the gut microbiota has been studied for years. However, questions on the contribution of host genetics to the colonizing process of the gut microbiota and to the extent that host genetics affect the gut microbiota have not yet been clearly answered. Most recently published reports have concluded that host genetics make a smaller contribution than other factors, such as diet, in determining the gut microbiota. Here we have exploited the increasing amount of fecal 16S rRNA gene sequencing data that are becoming available to conduct an analysis to assess the influence of host genetics on the diversity of the gut microbiota. By re-analyzing data obtained from over 5000 stool samples, representing individuals living on five continents and ranging in age from 3 days to 87 years, we found that the strength of the various factors affecting the membership or structure of the gut microbiota are quite different, which leads us to a hypothesis that the presence or absence of taxa is largely controlled by host genetics, whereas non-genetic factors regulate the abundance of each taxon. This hypothesis is supported by the finding that the genome similarity positively correlates with the similarity of community membership. Finally, we showed that only severe perturbations are able to alter the gut microbial community membership. In summary, our work provides new insights into understanding the complexities of the gut microbial community and how it responds to changes imposed on it.

  3. Recent Advances in Genetic Technique of Microbial Report Cells and Their Applications in Cell Arrays

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Do Hyun Kim

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Microbial cell arrays have attracted consistent attention for their ability to provide unique global data on target analytes at low cost, their capacity for readily detectable and robust cell growth in diverse environments, their high degree of convenience, and their capacity for multiplexing via incorporation of molecularly tailored reporter cells. To highlight recent progress in the field of microbial cell arrays, this review discusses research on genetic engineering of reporter cells, technologies for patterning live cells on solid surfaces, cellular immobilization in different polymers, and studies on their application in environmental monitoring, disease diagnostics, and other related fields. On the basis of these results, we discuss current challenges and future prospects for novel microbial cell arrays, which show promise for use as potent tools for unraveling complex biological processes.

  4. How agricultural management shapes soil microbial communities: patterns emerging from genetic and genomic studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daly, Amanda; Grandy, A. Stuart

    2016-04-01

    Agriculture is a predominant land use and thus a large influence on global carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) balances, climate, and human health. If we are to produce food, fiber, and fuel sustainably we must maximize agricultural yield while minimizing negative environmental consequences, goals towards which we have made great strides through agronomic advances. However, most agronomic strategies have been designed with a view of soil as a black box, largely ignoring the way management is mediated by soil biota. Because soil microbes play a central role in many of the processes that deliver nutrients to crops and support their health and productivity, agricultural management strategies targeted to exploit or support microbial activity should deliver additional benefits. To do this we must determine how microbial community structure and function are shaped by agricultural practices, but until recently our characterizations of soil microbial communities in agricultural soils have been largely limited to broad taxonomic classes due to methodological constraints. With advances in high-throughput genetic and genomic sequencing techniques, better taxonomic resolution now enables us to determine how agricultural management affects specific microbes and, in turn, nutrient cycling outcomes. Here we unite findings from published research that includes genetic or genomic data about microbial community structure (e.g. 454, Illumina, clone libraries, qPCR) in soils under agricultural management regimes that differ in type and extent of tillage, cropping selections and rotations, inclusion of cover crops, organic amendments, and/or synthetic fertilizer application. We delineate patterns linking agricultural management to microbial diversity, biomass, C- and N-content, and abundance of microbial taxa; furthermore, where available, we compare patterns in microbial communities to patterns in soil extracellular enzyme activities, catabolic profiles, inorganic nitrogen pools, and nitrogen

  5. Application of genetically engineered microbial whole-cell biosensors for combined chemosensing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Wei; Yuan, Sheng; Zhong, Wen-Hui; Siddikee, Md Ashaduzzaman; Dai, Chuan-Chao

    2016-02-01

    The progress of genetically engineered microbial whole-cell biosensors for chemosensing and monitoring has been developed in the last 20 years. Those biosensors respond to target chemicals and produce output signals, which offer a simple and alternative way of assessment approaches. As actual pollution caused by human activities usually contains a combination of different chemical substances, how to employ those biosensors to accurately detect real contaminant samples and evaluate biological effects of the combined chemicals has become a realistic object of environmental researches. In this review, we outlined different types of the recent method of genetically engineered microbial whole-cell biosensors for combined chemical evaluation, epitomized their detection performance, threshold, specificity, and application progress that have been achieved up to now. We also discussed the applicability and limitations of this biosensor technology and analyzed the optimum conditions for their environmental assessment in a combined way.

  6. Importance of Mobile Genetic Elements and Conjugal Gene Transfer for Subsurface Microbial Community Adaptation to Biotransformation of Metals

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sorensen, Soren J.

    2005-06-01

    The overall goal of this project is to investigate the effect of mobile genetic elements and conjugal gene transfer on subsurface microbial community adaptation to mercury and chromium stress and biotransformation. Our studies focus on the interaction between the fate of these metals in the subsurface and the microbial community structure and activity.

  7. Linking social and pathogen transmission networks using microbial genetics in giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis).

    Science.gov (United States)

    VanderWaal, Kimberly L; Atwill, Edward R; Isbell, Lynne A; McCowan, Brenda

    2014-03-01

    Although network analysis has drawn considerable attention as a promising tool for disease ecology, empirical research has been hindered by limitations in detecting the occurrence of pathogen transmission (who transmitted to whom) within social networks. Using a novel approach, we utilize the genetics of a diverse microbe, Escherichia coli, to infer where direct or indirect transmission has occurred and use these data to construct transmission networks for a wild giraffe population (Giraffe camelopardalis). Individuals were considered to be a part of the same transmission chain and were interlinked in the transmission network if they shared genetic subtypes of E. coli. By using microbial genetics to quantify who transmits to whom independently from the behavioural data on who is in contact with whom, we were able to directly investigate how the structure of contact networks influences the structure of the transmission network. To distinguish between the effects of social and environmental contact on transmission dynamics, the transmission network was compared with two separate contact networks defined from the behavioural data: a social network based on association patterns, and a spatial network based on patterns of home-range overlap among individuals. We found that links in the transmission network were more likely to occur between individuals that were strongly linked in the social network. Furthermore, individuals that had more numerous connections or that occupied 'bottleneck' positions in the social network tended to occupy similar positions in the transmission network. No similar correlations were observed between the spatial and transmission networks. This indicates that an individual's social network position is predictive of transmission network position, which has implications for identifying individuals that function as super-spreaders or transmission bottlenecks in the population. These results emphasize the importance of association patterns in

  8. Metabolic activity and genetic diversity of microbial communities inhabiting the rhizosphere of halophyton plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bárány, Agnes; Szili-Kovács, Tibor; Krett, Gergely; Füzy, Anna; Márialigeti, Károly; Borsodi, Andrea K

    2014-09-01

    A preliminary study was conducted to compare the community level physiological profile (CLPP) and genetic diversity of rhizosphere microbial communities of four plant species growing nearby Kiskunság soda ponds, namely Böddi-szék, Kelemen-szék and Zab-szék. CLPP was assessed by MicroResp method using 15 different substrates while Denaturing Gradient Gel Electrophoresis (DGGE) was used to analyse genetic diversity of bacterial communities. The soil physical and chemical properties were quite different at the three sampling sites. Multivariate statistics (PCA and UPGMA) revealed that Zab-szék samples could be separated according to their genetic profile from the two others which might be attributed to the geographical location and perhaps the differences in soil physical properties. Böddi-szék samples could be separated from the two others considering the metabolic activity which could be explained by their high salt and low humus contents. The number of bands in DGGE gels was related to the metabolic activity, and positively correlated with soil humus content, but negatively with soil salt content. The main finding was that geographical location, soil physical and chemical properties and the type of vegetation were all important factors influencing the metabolic activity and genetic diversity of rhizosphere microbial communities.

  9. Imidacloprid induces changes in the structure, genetic diversity and catabolic activity of soil microbial communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cycoń, Mariusz; Markowicz, Anna; Borymski, Sławomir; Wójcik, Marcin; Piotrowska-Seget, Zofia

    2013-12-15

    This is the first report describing the effect of imidacloprid applied at field rate (FR, 1 mg/kg of soil) and 10 times the FR (10*FR, 10 mg/kg of soil) on the structural, genetic and physiological diversity of soil bacterial community as determined by the phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA), the denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE), and the community level physiological profile (CLPP) approaches. PLFA profiles showed that imidacloprid significantly shifted the microbial community structure and decreased the biomass of the total, bacterial and fungal PLFAs, however, this effect was transient at the FR dosage. The alterations in DGGE patterns caused by imidacloprid application, confirmed considerable changes in the overall richness and diversity of dominant bacteria. Although, as a result of imidacloprid application, the metabolic activity of microbial communities was generally lower, the richness and functional biodiversity of the soil microbial community were not negatively affected. In general, the analysis of the variance indicated that the measured parameters were significantly affected by treatment and the incubation time, however, the incubation time effect explained most of the observed variance. Imidacloprid degradation and the appearance of some new bands in DGGE profiles suggest the evolution of bacteria capable of degrading imidacloprid among indigenous microflora.

  10. Origin of microbial life: Nano- and molecular events, thermodynamics/entropy, quantum mechanisms and genetic instructions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trevors, J T

    2011-03-01

    Currently, there are no agreed upon mechanisms and supporting evidence for the origin of the first microbial cells on the Earth. However, some hypotheses have been proposed with minimal supporting evidence and experimentation/observations. The approach taken in this article is that life originated at the nano- and molecular levels of biological organization, using quantum mechanic principles that became manifested as classical microbial cell(s), allowing the origin of microbial life on the Earth with a core or minimal, organic, genetic code containing the correct instructions for cell(s) for growth and division, in a micron dimension environment, with a local entropy range conducive to life (present about 4 billion years ago), and obeying the laws of thermodynamics. An integrated approach that explores all encompassing factors necessary for the origin of life, may bring forth plausible hypotheses (and mechanisms) with much needed supporting experimentation and observations for an origin of life theory. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Identification and reconstitution of genetic regulatory networks for improved microbial tolerance to isooctane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Aram; Chang, Matthew Wook

    2012-04-01

    Microbial tolerance to hydrocarbons has been studied in an effort to improve the productivity of biochemical processes and to enhance the efficiency of hydrocarbon bioremediation. Despite these studies, few attempts have been made to design rational strategies to improve microbial tolerance to hydrocarbons. Herein, we present an engineering framework that enables us to harness our understanding of genetic regulatory networks to improve hydrocarbon tolerance. In this study, isooctane was used as a representative hydrocarbon due to its use in petroleum refining and in biochemical processes. To increase isooctane tolerance, we first identified essential transcriptional determinants and genetic regulatory networks underlying cellular responses to isooctane in Escherichia coli using genome-wide microarray analysis. Based on functional transcriptome and bioinformatics analysis, a range of combinations of transcription factors whose activity was predictably perturbed by isooctane were knocked out and overexpressed to reconstitute the regulatory networks. We demonstrated that the reconstitution of the regulatory networks led to a significant improvement in isooctane tolerance, and especially, engineered E. coli strains lacking and overexpressing some of the perturbed transcription factors showed 3- to 5-fold improvement. This microbe with high tolerance to isooctane can be harnessed for biochemical processes, fuel oil bioremediation and metabolic engineering for biofuel production. Furthermore, we envision that the engineering framework employed to improve the tolerance in this study can be exploited for developing other microbes with desired phenotypes.

  12. Exopolysaccharide production by a genetically engineered Enterobacter cloacae strain for microbial enhanced oil recovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Shanshan; Zhang, Zhongzhi; Luo, Yijing; Zhong, Weizhang; Xiao, Meng; Yi, Wenjing; Yu, Li; Fu, Pengcheng

    2011-05-01

    Microbial enhanced oil recovery (MEOR) is a petroleum biotechnology for manipulating function and/or structure of microbial environments existing in oil reservoirs for prolonged exploitation of the largest source of energy. In this study, an Enterobacter cloacae which is capable of producing water-insoluble biopolymers at 37°C and a thermophilic Geobacillus strain were used to construct an engineered strain for exopolysaccharide production at higher temperature. The resultant transformants, GW3-3.0, could produce exopolysaccharide up to 8.83 g l(-1) in molasses medium at 54°C. This elevated temperature was within the same temperature range as that for many oil reservoirs. The transformants had stable genetic phenotype which was genetically fingerprinted by RAPD analysis. Core flooding experiments were carried out to ensure effective controlled profile for the simulation of oil recovery. The results have demonstrated that this approach has a promising application potential in MEOR. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Temporal dynamics of microbial communities in the rhizosphere of two genetically modified (GM) maize hybrids in tropical agrosystems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cotta, Simone Raposo; Franco Dias, Armando Cavalcante; Marriel, Ivanildo Evodio; Gomes, Eliane Aparecida; van Elsas, Jan Dirk; Seldin, Lucy

    2013-01-01

    The use of genetically modified (GM) plants still raises concerns about their environmental impact. The present study aimed to evaluate the possible effects of GM maize, in comparison to the parental line, on the structure and abundance of microbial communities in the rhizosphere. Moreover, the effe

  14. COMPETITIVE METAGENOMIC DNA HYBRIDIZATION IDENTIFIES HOST-SPECIFIC GENETIC MARKERS IN HUMAN FECAL MICROBIAL COMMUNITIES

    Science.gov (United States)

    Although recent technological advances in DNA sequencing and computational biology now allow scientists to compare entire microbial genomes, the use of these approaches to discern key genomic differences between natural microbial communities remains prohibitively expensive for mo...

  15. Effect of Genetically Modified Poplars on Soil Microbial Communities during the Phytoremediation of Waste Mine Tailings▿†

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hur, Moonsuk; Kim, Yongho; Song, Hae-Ryong; Kim, Jong Min; Choi, Young Im; Yi, Hana

    2011-01-01

    The application of transgenic plants to clean up environmental pollution caused by the wastes of heavy metal mining is a promising method for removing metal pollutants from soils. However, the effect of using genetically modified organisms for phytoremediation is a poorly researched topic in terms of microbial community structures, despite the important role of microorganisms in the health of soil. In this study, a comparative analysis of the bacterial and archaeal communities found in the rhizosphere of genetically modified (GM) versus wild-type (WT) poplar was conducted on trees at different growth stages (i.e., the rhizospheres of 1.5-, 2.5-, and 3-year-old poplars) that were cultivated on contaminated soils together with nonplanted control soil. Based on the results of DNA pyrosequencing, poplar type and growth stages were associated with directional changes in the structure of the microbial community. The rate of change was faster in GM poplars than in WT poplars, but the microbial communities were identical in the 3-year-old poplars. This phenomenon may arise because of a higher rate and greater extent of metal accumulation in GM poplars than in naturally occurring plants, which resulted in greater changes in soil environments and hence the microbial habitat. PMID:21890678

  16. Microbial and genetic ecology of tropical Vertisols under intensive chemical farming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malhotra, Jaya; Aparna, K; Dua, Ankita; Sangwan, Naseer; Trimurtulu, N; Rao, D L N; Lal, Rup

    2015-01-01

    There are continued concerns on unscientific usage of chemical fertilizers and pesticides, particularly in many developing countries leading to adverse consequences for soil biological quality and agricultural sustainability. In farmers' fields in tropical Vertisols of peninsular India, "high" fertilizer and pesticide usage at about 2.3 times the recommended rates in black gram (Vigna mungo) did not have a deleterious effect on the abundance of culturable microorganisms, associative nitrogen fixers, nitrifiers, and 16S rRNA gene diversity compared to normal rates. However, "very high" application at about five times the fertilizers and 1.5 times pesticides in chilies (Capsicum annuum) adversely affected the populations of fungi, actinomycetes, and ammonifiers, along with a drastic change in the eubacterial community profile and diversity over normal rates. Actinobacteria were dominant in black gram normal (BG1) (47%), black gram high (BG2) (36%), and chili normal (CH1) (30%) and were least in chili very high (CH2) (14%). Geodermatophilus formed 20% of Actinobacteria in BG1 but disappeared in BG2, CH1, and CH2. Asticcacaulis dominated at "very high" input site (CH2). Diversity of nitrogen fixers was completely altered; Dechloromonas and Anaeromyxobacter were absent in BG1 but proliferated well in BG2. There was reduction in rhizobial nifH sequences in BG2 by 46%. Phylogenetic differences characterized by UniFrac and principal coordinate analysis showed that BG2 and CH2 clustered together depicting a common pattern of genetic shift, while BG1 and CH1 fell at different axis. Overall, there were adverse consequences of "very high" fertilizer and pesticide usage on soil microbial diversity and function in tropical Vertisols.

  17. Changes in soil microbial community structure associated with two types of genetically engineered plants analyzing by PLFA

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    XUE Kai; LUO Hai-feng; QI Hong-yan; ZHANG Hong-xun

    2005-01-01

    With the rapid expansion of GEPs(genetically engineered plants), people are more and more concerned about the ecological risks brought by their release. Assessing the effect of GEPs on soil microbial ecology is indispensable to study their ecological risks. In our study, the phospholipids fatty acid(PLFA) method was used to analyze the microbial community of soil samples collected from fields with two types of GEPs-Bt transgenic corn and PVY(potato virus Y) cell protein gene transgenic potato. The principal components analysis(PCA) showed all controls were on the right of related GEPs samples along the PC1 (the first principal component) axis, which means a decrease of fungi in soils with genetically engineered crop since most of PLFAs that are strongly positively correlated with PC1 represent fungi. For samples collected from Bt transgenic cornfield, the ratios of gram-positive to gram-negative bacteria were less than those of controls. For samples of transgenic potato field, these ratios were lower than those of controls when soils were collected from deep layer(20-40 cm), but were higher when soils collected from surface layer(0-20 cm). For soils collected from 0-20 cm, the ratios of fungi to bacteria for all GEPs samples were at the same level. So were such rations for all controls. Changes of soil microbial community in two types of GEPs fields were detected in our study, but the causes and more information still needs further study.

  18. Bovine Host Genetic Variation Influences Rumen Microbial Methane Production with Best Selection Criterion for Low Methane Emitting and Efficiently Feed Converting Hosts Based on Metagenomic Gene Abundance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rainer Roehe

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Methane produced by methanogenic archaea in ruminants contributes significantly to anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. The host genetic link controlling microbial methane production is unknown and appropriate genetic selection strategies are not developed. We used sire progeny group differences to estimate the host genetic influence on rumen microbial methane production in a factorial experiment consisting of crossbred breed types and diets. Rumen metagenomic profiling was undertaken to investigate links between microbial genes and methane emissions or feed conversion efficiency. Sire progeny groups differed significantly in their methane emissions measured in respiration chambers. Ranking of the sire progeny groups based on methane emissions or relative archaeal abundance was consistent overall and within diet, suggesting that archaeal abundance in ruminal digesta is under host genetic control and can be used to genetically select animals without measuring methane directly. In the metagenomic analysis of rumen contents, we identified 3970 microbial genes of which 20 and 49 genes were significantly associated with methane emissions and feed conversion efficiency respectively. These explained 81% and 86% of the respective variation and were clustered in distinct functional gene networks. Methanogenesis genes (e.g. mcrA and fmdB were associated with methane emissions, whilst host-microbiome cross talk genes (e.g. TSTA3 and FucI were associated with feed conversion efficiency. These results strengthen the idea that the host animal controls its own microbiota to a significant extent and open up the implementation of effective breeding strategies using rumen microbial gene abundance as a predictor for difficult-to-measure traits on a large number of hosts. Generally, the results provide a proof of principle to use the relative abundance of microbial genes in the gastrointestinal tract of different species to predict their influence on traits e

  19. Bovine Host Genetic Variation Influences Rumen Microbial Methane Production with Best Selection Criterion for Low Methane Emitting and Efficiently Feed Converting Hosts Based on Metagenomic Gene Abundance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roehe, Rainer; Dewhurst, Richard J; Duthie, Carol-Anne; Rooke, John A; McKain, Nest; Ross, Dave W; Hyslop, Jimmy J; Waterhouse, Anthony; Freeman, Tom C; Watson, Mick; Wallace, R John

    2016-02-01

    Methane produced by methanogenic archaea in ruminants contributes significantly to anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. The host genetic link controlling microbial methane production is unknown and appropriate genetic selection strategies are not developed. We used sire progeny group differences to estimate the host genetic influence on rumen microbial methane production in a factorial experiment consisting of crossbred breed types and diets. Rumen metagenomic profiling was undertaken to investigate links between microbial genes and methane emissions or feed conversion efficiency. Sire progeny groups differed significantly in their methane emissions measured in respiration chambers. Ranking of the sire progeny groups based on methane emissions or relative archaeal abundance was consistent overall and within diet, suggesting that archaeal abundance in ruminal digesta is under host genetic control and can be used to genetically select animals without measuring methane directly. In the metagenomic analysis of rumen contents, we identified 3970 microbial genes of which 20 and 49 genes were significantly associated with methane emissions and feed conversion efficiency respectively. These explained 81% and 86% of the respective variation and were clustered in distinct functional gene networks. Methanogenesis genes (e.g. mcrA and fmdB) were associated with methane emissions, whilst host-microbiome cross talk genes (e.g. TSTA3 and FucI) were associated with feed conversion efficiency. These results strengthen the idea that the host animal controls its own microbiota to a significant extent and open up the implementation of effective breeding strategies using rumen microbial gene abundance as a predictor for difficult-to-measure traits on a large number of hosts. Generally, the results provide a proof of principle to use the relative abundance of microbial genes in the gastrointestinal tract of different species to predict their influence on traits e.g. human metabolism

  20. Isolation and genetic identification of PAH degrading bacteria from a microbial consortium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molina, M Carmen; González, Natalia; Bautista, L Fernando; Sanz, Raquel; Simarro, Raquel; Sánchez, Irene; Sanz, José L

    2009-11-01

    Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH; naphthalene, anthracene and phenanthrene) degrading microbial consortium C2PL05 was obtained from a sandy soil chronically exposed to petroleum products, collected from a petrochemical complex in Puertollano (Ciudad Real, Spain). The consortium C2PL05 was highly efficient degrading completely naphthalene, phenanthrene and anthracene in around 18 days of cultivation. The toxicity (Microtox method) generated by the PAH and by the intermediate metabolites was reduced to levels close to non-toxic in almost 40 days of cultivation. The identified bacteria from the contaminated soil belonged to gamma-proteobacteria and could be include in Enterobacter and Pseudomonas genus. DGGE analysis revealed uncultured Stenotrophomonas ribotypes as a possible PAH degrader in the microbial consortium. The present work shows the potential use of these microorganisms and the total consortium for the bioremediation of PAH polluted areas since the biodegradation of these chemicals takes place along with a significant decrease in toxicity.

  1. Genetic and functional diversity of soil microbial communities associated to grapevine plants and wine quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mocali, Stefano; Fabiano, Arturo; Kuramae, Eiko; de Hollander, Matias; Kowalchuck, George; Vignozzi, Nadia; Valboa, Giuseppe; Pastorelli, Roberta; Fornasier, Flavio; Priori, Simone; Costantini, Edoardo

    2014-05-01

    Introduction Despite the economic importance of vineyards in Italy, the wine sector is facing severe challenges from increased global competition and climate changes. The quality of the grape at harvest has a strong direct impact on final wine quality and the strong relationship between wine composition, aroma, taste and soil properties has been outlined in the "Terroir concept". However, information on the impact of soil microbial communities on soil functions, grapevine plants and wine quality is still lacking. Objectives The aim of this study was to explore the composition and the potential functions of soil microbial communities associated to grapevine plants grown in two soils which showed similar physical, chemical and hydrological properties but which provided a different wine quality. Materials and Methods Soils from two sites of the Chianti region in Tuscany (BRO11 and BRO12) cultivated with the grapevine cultivar Sangiovese with contrasting wine quality were examined by means of a structural and functional approach: specifically, GeoChip microarrays, pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA and 18S rRNA genes, enzyme assays and measurements of some soil biological properties, such as microbial biomass C and soil respiration, were carried out. Results Enzyme assays and soil biological analyses revealed a higher biological activity in BRO11 as compared to BRO12. The structure of soil microbial communities, assessed using 16S and 18S rRNA gene-targeted pyrosequencing, revealed a higher presence of Actinobacteria in the BRO12 than in the BRO11 soil where, in contrast, the alfa-Proteobacteria are more abundant. GeoChip microarray analyses revealed a consistent difference in genes involved in S cycling, with a significant overrepresentation of sulfur-oxidation genes in BRO11 and increased levels of sulfate reduction genes BRO12. These results are consistent with the high content of sulfates and the abundance of Firmicutes such as Sulfobacillus thermosulfidooxidans in the BRO

  2. Synthetic alienation of microbial organisms by using genetic code engineering: Why and how?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kubyshkin, Vladimir; Budisa, Nediljko

    2017-08-01

    The main goal of synthetic biology (SB) is the creation of biodiversity applicable for biotechnological needs, while xenobiology (XB) aims to expand the framework of natural chemistries with the non-natural building blocks in living cells to accomplish artificial biodiversity. Protein and proteome engineering, which overcome limitation of the canonical amino acid repertoire of 20 (+2) prescribed by the genetic code by using non-canonic amino acids (ncAAs), is one of the main focuses of XB research. Ideally, estranging the genetic code from its current form via systematic introduction of ncAAs should enable the development of bio-containment mechanisms in synthetic cells potentially endowing them with a "genetic firewall" i.e. orthogonality which prevents genetic information transfer to natural systems. Despite rapid progress over the past two decades, it is not yet possible to completely alienate an organism that would use and maintain different genetic code associations permanently. In order to engineer robust bio-contained life forms, the chemical logic behind the amino acid repertoire establishment should be considered. Starting from recent proposal of Hartman and Smith about the genetic code establishment in the RNA world, here the authors mapped possible biotechnological invasion points for engineering of bio-contained synthetic cells equipped with non-canonical functionalities. Copyright © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  3. Effects of genetically modified plants on microbial communities and processes in soil

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bruinsma, M.; Kowalchuk, G.A.; Van Veen, J.A.

    2003-01-01

    The development and use of genetically modified plants (GMPs) has been a topic of considerable public debate in recent years. GMPs hold great promise for improving agricultural output, but the potential for unwanted effects of GMP use is still not fully understood. The majority of studies addressing

  4. Australian endemic pest tephritids: genetic, molecular and microbial tools for improved Sterile Insect Technique.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raphael, Kathryn A; Shearman, Deborah C A; Gilchrist, A Stuart; Sved, John A; Morrow, Jennifer L; Sherwin, William B; Riegler, Markus; Frommer, Marianne

    2014-01-01

    Among Australian endemic tephritid fruit flies, the sibling species Bactrocera tryoni and Bactrocera neohumeralis have been serious horticultural pests since the introduction of horticulture in the nineteenth century. More recently, Bactrocera jarvisi has also been declared a pest in northern Australia. After several decades of genetic research there is now a range of classical and molecular genetic tools that can be used to develop improved Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) strains for control of these pests. Four-way crossing strategies have the potential to overcome the problem of inbreeding in mass-reared strains of B. tryoni. The ability to produce hybrids between B. tryoni and the other two species in the laboratory has proved useful for the development of genetically marked strains. The identification of Y-chromosome markers in B. jarvisi means that male and female embryos can be distinguished in any strain that carries a B. jarvisi Y chromosome. This has enabled the study of homologues of the sex-determination genes during development of B jarvisi and B. tryoni, which is necessary for the generation of genetic-sexing strains. Germ-line transformation has been established and a draft genome sequence for B. tryoni released. Transcriptomes from various species, tissues and developmental stages, to aid in identification of manipulation targets for improving SIT, have been assembled and are in the pipeline. Broad analyses of the microbiome have revealed a metagenome that is highly variable within and across species and defined by the environment. More specific analyses detected Wolbachia at low prevalence in the tropics but absent in temperate regions, suggesting a possible role for this endosymbiont in future control strategies.

  5. Robust Inference of Genetic Exchange Communities from Microbial Genomes Using TF-IDF

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cong, Yingnan; Chan, Yao-ban; Phillips, Charles A.; Langston, Michael A.; Ragan, Mark A.

    2017-01-01

    Bacteria and archaea can exchange genetic material across lineages through processes of lateral genetic transfer (LGT). Collectively, these exchange relationships can be modeled as a network and analyzed using concepts from graph theory. In particular, densely connected regions within an LGT network have been defined as genetic exchange communities (GECs). However, it has been problematic to construct networks in which edges solely represent LGT. Here we apply term frequency-inverse document frequency (TF-IDF), an alignment-free method originating from document analysis, to infer regions of lateral origin in bacterial genomes. We examine four empirical datasets of different size (number of genomes) and phyletic breadth, varying a key parameter (word length k) within bounds established in previous work. We map the inferred lateral regions to genes in recipient genomes, and construct networks in which the nodes are groups of genomes, and the edges natively represent LGT. We then extract maximum and maximal cliques (i.e., GECs) from these graphs, and identify nodes that belong to GECs across a wide range of k. Most surviving lateral transfer has happened within these GECs. Using Gene Ontology enrichment tests we demonstrate that biological processes associated with metabolism, regulation and transport are often over-represented among the genes affected by LGT within these communities. These enrichments are largely robust to change of k. PMID:28154557

  6. Reconstructing the Genetic Potential of the Microbially-Mediated Nitrogen Cycle in a Salt Marsh Ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dini-Andreote, Francisco; Brossi, Maria Julia de L.; van Elsas, Jan Dirk; Salles, Joana F.

    2016-01-01

    Coastal ecosystems are considered buffer zones for the discharge of land-derived nutrients without accounting for potential negative side effects. Hence, there is an urgent need to better understand the ecological assembly and dynamics of the microorganisms that are involved in nitrogen (N) cycling in such systems. Here, we employed two complementary methodological approaches (i.e., shotgun metagenomics and quantitative PCR) to examine the distribution and abundance of selected microbial genes involved in N transformations. We used soil samples collected along a well-established pristine salt marsh soil chronosequence that spans over a century of ecosystem development at the island of Schiermonnikoog, The Netherlands. Across the examined soil successional stages, the structure of the populations of genes involved in N cycling processes was strongly related to (shifts in the) soil nitrogen levels (i.e., NO3−, NH4+), salinity and pH (explaining 73.8% of the total variation, R2 = 0.71). Quantification of the genes used as proxies for N fixation, nitrification and denitrification revealed clear successional signatures that corroborated the taxonomic assignments obtained by metagenomics. Notably, we found strong evidence for niche partitioning, as revealed by the abundance and distribution of marker genes for nitrification (ammonia-oxidizing bacteria and archaea) and denitrification (nitrite reductase nirK, nirS and nitrous oxide reductase nosZ clades I and II). This was supported by a distinct correlation between these genes and soil physico-chemical properties, such as soil physical structure, pH, salinity, organic matter, total N, NO3−, NH4+ and SO42−, across four seasonal samplings. Overall, this study sheds light on the successional trajectories of microbial N cycle genes along a naturally developing salt marsh ecosystem. The data obtained serve as a foundation to guide the formulation of ecological models that aim to effectively monitor and manage pristine

  7. Harnessing microbial gene pools to remediate persistent organic pollutants using genetically modified plants--a viable technology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rylott, Elizabeth L; Johnston, Emily J; Bruce, Neil C

    2015-11-01

    It has been 14 years since the international community came together to legislate the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs), restricting the production and use of specific chemicals that were found to be environmentally stable, often bioaccumulating, with long-term toxic effects. Efforts are continuing to remove these pollutants from the environment. While incineration and chemical treatment can be successful, these methods require the removal of tonnes of soil, at high cost, and are damaging to soil structure and microbial communities. The engineering of plants for in situ POP remediation has had highly promising results, and could be a more environmentally-friendly alternative. This review discusses the characterization of POP-degrading bacterial pathways, and how the genes responsible have been harnessed using genetic modification (GM) to introduce these same abilities into plants. Recent advances in multi-gene cloning, genome editing technologies and expression in monocot species are accelerating progress with remediation-applicable species. Examples include plants developed to degrade 2,4,6-trinitrotoluene (TNT), hexahydro-1,3,5-trinitro-1,3,5-triazine (RDX), trichloroethylene (TCE), and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). However, the costs and timescales needed to gain regulatory approval, along with continued public opposition, are considerable. The benefits and challenges in this rapidly developing and promising field are discussed. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  8. Stimulation of electro-fermentation in single-chamber microbial electrolysis cells driven by genetically engineered anode biofilms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Awate, Bhushan; Steidl, Rebecca J.; Hamlischer, Thilo; Reguera, Gemma

    2017-07-01

    Unwanted metabolites produced during fermentations reduce titers and productivity and increase the cost of downstream purification of the targeted product. As a result, the economic feasibility of otherwise attractive fermentations is low. Using ethanol fermentation by the consolidated bioprocessing cellulolytic bacterium Cellulomonas uda, we demonstrate the effectiveness of anodic electro-fermentations at maximizing titers and productivity in a single-chamber microbial electrolysis cell (SCMEC) without the need for metabolic engineering of the fermentative microbe. The performance of the SCMEC platform relied on the genetic improvements of anode biofilms of the exoelectrogen Geobacter sulfurreducens that prevented the oxidation of cathodic hydrogen and improved lactate oxidation. Furthermore, a hybrid bioanode was designed that maximized the removal of organic acids in the fermentation broth. The targeted approach increased cellobiose consumption rates and ethanol titers, yields, and productivity three-fold or more, prevented pH imbalances and reduced batch-to-batch variability. In addition, the sugar substrate was fully consumed and ethanol was enriched in the broth during the electro-fermentation, simplifying its downstream purification. Such improvements and the possibility of scaling up SCMEC configurations highlight the potential of anodic electro-fermentations to stimulate fermentative bacteria beyond their natural capacity and to levels required for industrial implementation.

  9. Isolation and Characterization of Mobile Genetic Elements from Microbial Assemblages Obtained from the Field Research Center Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Patricia Sobecky; Cassie Hodges; Kerri Lafferty; Mike Humphreys; Melanie Raimondo; Kristin Tuttle; Tamar Barkay

    2004-03-17

    Considerable knowledge has been gained from the intensive study of a relatively limited group of bacterial plasmids. Recent efforts have begun to focus on the characterization of, at the molecular level, plasmid populations and associated mobile genetic elements (e.g., transposons, integrons) occurring in a wider range of aquatic and terrestrial habitats. Surprisingly, however, little information is available regarding the incidence and distribution of mobile genetic elements extant in contaminated subsurface environments. Such studies will provide greater knowledge on the ecology of plasmids and their contributions to the genetic plasticity (and adaptation) of naturally occurring subsurface microbial communities. We requested soil cores from the DOE NABIR Field Research Center (FRC) located on the Oak Ridge Reservation. The cores, received in February 2003, were sampled from four areas on the Oak Ridge Site: Area 1, Area 2, Area 3 (representing contaminated subsurface locales) and the background reference sites. The average core length (24 in) was subdivided into three profiles and soil pH and moisture content were determined. Uranium concentration was also determined in bulk samples. Replicate aliquots were fixed for total cell counts and for bacterial isolation. Four different isolation media were used to culture aerobic and facultative microbes from these four study areas. Colony forming units ranged from a minimum of 100 per gram soil to a maximum of 10,000 irrespective of media composition used. The vast majority of cultured subsurface isolates were gram-positive isolates and plasmid characterization was conducted per methods routinely used in the Sobecky laboratory. The percentage of plasmid incidence ranged from 10% to 60% of all isolates tested. This frequency appears to be somewhat higher than the incidence of plasmids we have observed in other habitats and we are increasing the number of isolates screened to confirm this observation. We are also

  10. Interpreting microarray data to build models of microbial genetic regulation networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sokhansanj, Bahrad A.; Garnham, Janine B.; Fitch, J. Patrick

    2002-06-01

    Microarrays and DNA chips are an efficient, high-throughput technology for measuring temporal changes in the expression of message RNA (mRNA) from thousands of genes (often the entire genome of an organism) in a single experiment. A crucial drawback of microarray experiments is that results are inherently qualitative: data are generally neither quantitatively repeatable, nor may microarray spot intensities be calibrated to in vivo mRNA concentrations. Nevertheless, microarrays represent by the far the cheapest and fastest way to obtain information about a cell's global genetic regulatory networks. Besides poor signal characteristics, the massive number of data produced by microarray experiments pose challenges for visualization, interpretation and model building. Towards initial model development, we have developed a Java tool for visualizing the spatial organization of gene expression in bacteria. We are also developing an approach to inferring and testing qualitative fuzzy logic models of gene regulation using microarray data. Because we are developing and testing qualitative hypotheses that do not require quantitative precision, our statistical evaluation of experimental data is limited to checking for validity and consistency. Our goals are to maximize the impact of inexpensive microarray technology, bearing in mind that biological models and hypotheses are typically qualitative.

  11. STABILITY IN REAL TIME OF SOME CRYOPRESERVED MICROBIAL STRAINS WITH REFERENCE TO GENETICALLY MODIFIED MICROORGANISMS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    DANIELA VINTILĂ

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this work is to analyze the viability of microorganisms from Collection of Industrial Microorganisms from Faculty of Animal Science and Biotechnology – Timisoara, during freezing and thawing as part of cryopreservation technique. The stability in real time of 19 strains cryopreserved in 16% glycerol was evaluated during a 6-months period. The strains studied were: Escherichia coli, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Rhizobium meliloti, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Aspergillus oryzae, Aspergillus niger, Trichoderma viride, Bacillus globigii, Bacillus licheniformis, and 9 strains of Bacillus subtilis. The strains cryopreserved at -20oC and -70oC were activated using the fast thawing protocol. A better cell recovery was achieved with the -70oC protocol reaching an average viability for E. coli of 86,3%, comparing with 78,6% in -20oC protocol. The cell recovery percentages for the other strains were: 92,4% for L. acidophilus, 93,9% for A.niger, 89% for A. oryzae, 86,7% for T. viride, 94,2% for R. meliloti, 82,1% for S. cerevisiae, 89,9% for B. licheniformis. Regarding the viability of genetically modified microorganisms, the values shows a good recovering after freezing and thawing, even after 180 days of cryopreservation. With the -20oC protocol lower viability was observed due probably to the formation of eutectic mixtures and recrystalization processes.

  12. High Genetic Diversity of Microbial Cellulase and Hemicellulase Genes in the Hindgut of Holotrichia parallela Larvae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ping Sheng

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we used a culture-independent method based on library construction and sequencing to analyze the genetic diversity of the cellulase and hemicellulase genes of the bacterial community resident in the hindgut of Holotrichia parallela larvae. The results indicate that there is a large, diverse set of bacterial genes encoding lignocellulose hydrolysis enzymes in the hindgut of H. parallela. The total of 101 distinct gene fragments (similarity <95% of glycosyl hydrolase families including GH2 (24 genes, GH8 (27 genes, GH10 (19 genes, GH11 (14 genes and GH36 (17 genes families was retrieved, and certain sequences of GH2 (10.61%, GH8 (3.33%, and GH11 (18.42% families had <60% identities with known sequences in GenBank, indicating their novelty. Based on phylogenetic analysis, sequences from hemicellulase families were related to enzymes from Bacteroidetes and Firmicutes. Fragments from cellulase family were most associated with the phylum of Proteobacteria. Furthermore, a full-length endo-xylanase gene was obtained, and the enzyme exhibited activity over a broad range of pH levels. Our results indicate that there are large number of cellulolytic and xylanolytic bacteria in the hindgut of H. parallela larvae, and these symbiotic bacteria play an important role in the degradation of roots and other organic matter for the host insect.

  13. Interpreting Microarray Data to Build Models of Microbial Genetic Regulation Networks

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sokhansanj, B; Garnham, J B; Fitch, J P

    2002-01-23

    Microarrays and DNA chips are an efficient, high-throughput technology for measuring temporal changes in the expression of message RNA (mRNA) from thousands of genes (often the entire genome of an organism) in a single experiment. A crucial drawback of microarray experiments is that results are inherently qualitative: data are generally neither quantitatively repeatable, nor may microarray spot intensities be calibrated to in vivo mRNA concentrations. Nevertheless, microarrays represent by the far the cheapest and fastest way to obtain information about a cells global genetic regulatory networks. Besides poor signal characteristics, the massive number of data produced by microarray experiments poses challenges for visualization, interpretation and model building. Towards initial model development, we have developed a Java tool for visualizing the spatial organization of gene expression in bacteria. We are also developing an approach to inferring and testing qualitative fuzzy logic models of gene regulation using microarray data. Because we are developing and testing qualitative hypotheses that do not require quantitative precision, our statistical evaluation of experimental data is limited to checking for validity and consistency. Our goals are to maximize the impact of inexpensive microarray technology, bearing in mind that biological models and hypotheses are typically qualitative.

  14. Cystic fibrosis lung disease: genetic influences, microbial interactions, and radiological assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moskowitz, Samuel M.; Gibson, Ronald L. [University of Washington, Department of Pediatrics, Seattle, WA (United States); Effmann, Eric L. [University of Washington School of Medicine, Children' s Hospital and Regional Medical Center, Department of Radiology, Seattle, WA (United States)

    2005-08-01

    Cystic fibrosis (CF) is a multiorgan disease caused by mutation of the CF transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene. Obstructive lung disease is the predominant cause of morbidity and mortality; thus, most efforts to improve outcomes are directed toward slowing or halting lung-disease progression. Current therapies, such as mucolytics, airway clearance techniques, bronchodilators, and antibiotics, aim to suppress airway inflammation and the processes that stimulate it, namely, retention and infection of mucus plaques at the airway surface. New approaches to therapy that aim to ameliorate specific CFTR mutations or mutational classes by restoring normal expression or function are being investigated. Because of its sensitivity in detecting changes associated with early airway obstruction and regional lung disease, high-resolution CT (HRCT) complements pulmonary function testing in defining disease natural history and measuring response to both conventional and experimental therapies. In this review, perspectives on the genetics and microbiology of CF provide a context for understanding the increasing importance of HRCT and other imaging techniques in assessing CF therapies. (orig.)

  15. Microfluidics and microbial engineering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kou, Songzi; Cheng, Danhui; Sun, Fei; Hsing, I-Ming

    2016-02-01

    The combination of microbial engineering and microfluidics is synergistic in nature. For example, microfluidics is benefiting from the outcome of microbial engineering and many reported point-of-care microfluidic devices employ engineered microbes as functional parts for the microsystems. In addition, microbial engineering is facilitated by various microfluidic techniques, due to their inherent strength in high-throughput screening and miniaturization. In this review article, we firstly examine the applications of engineered microbes for toxicity detection, biosensing, and motion generation in microfluidic platforms. Secondly, we look into how microfluidic technologies facilitate the upstream and downstream processes of microbial engineering, including DNA recombination, transformation, target microbe selection, mutant characterization, and microbial function analysis. Thirdly, we highlight an emerging concept in microbial engineering, namely, microbial consortium engineering, where the behavior of a multicultural microbial community rather than that of a single cell/species is delineated. Integrating the disciplines of microfluidics and microbial engineering opens up many new opportunities, for example in diagnostics, engineering of microbial motors, development of portable devices for genetics, high throughput characterization of genetic mutants, isolation and identification of rare/unculturable microbial species, single-cell analysis with high spatio-temporal resolution, and exploration of natural microbial communities.

  16. Effect of distance and depth on soil microbial biomass, N mineralization and genetic diversity of Rhizobia under Acacia senegal Tree

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fall, D.; Faye, A.; Sall, S. N.; Diouf, D.

    2009-07-01

    The relations between plants and soil biota involve positive and negative feedbacks between soil organisms, their chemical environment, and plants. Then, the characterization of microbial community functioning and their diversity are important to understand these linkages. An experiment was conducted in a field system for two years (2005 and 2006) to investigate the effect of distance from tree stem on soil microbial biomass, N mineral content and the diversity of rhizobia associated to Acacia senegal. (Author)

  17. Genetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Inheritance; Heterozygous; Inheritance patterns; Heredity and disease; Heritable; Genetic markers ... The chromosomes are made up of strands of genetic information called DNA. Each chromosome contains sections of ...

  18. Semi-automated genetic analyses of soil microbial communities: comparison of T-RFLP and RISA based on descriptive and discriminative statistical approaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hartmann, Martin; Frey, Beat; Kölliker, Roland; Widmer, Franco

    2005-06-01

    Cultivation independent analyses of soil microbial community structures are frequently used to describe microbiological soil characteristics. This approach is based on direct extraction of total soil DNA followed by PCR amplification of selected marker genes and subsequent genetic fingerprint analyses. Semi-automated genetic fingerprinting techniques such as terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP) and ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis (RISA) yield high-resolution patterns of highly diverse soil microbial communities and hold great potential for use in routine soil quality monitoring, when rapid high throughput screening for differences or changes is more important than phylogenetic identification of organisms affected. Our objective was to perform profound statistical analysis to evaluate the cultivation independent approach and the consistency of results from T-RFLP and RISA. As a model system, we used two different heavy metal treated soils from an open top chamber experiment. Bacterial T-RFLP and RISA profiles of 16S rDNA were converted into numeric data matrices in order to allow for detailed statistical analyses with cluster analysis, Mantel test statistics, Monte Carlo permutation tests and ANOVA. Analyses revealed that soil DNA-contents were significantly correlated with soil microbial biomass in our system. T-RFLP and RISA yielded highly consistent and correlating results and both allowed to distinguish the four treatments with equal significance. While RISA represents a fast and general fingerprinting method of moderate cost and labor intensity, T-RFLP is technically more demanding but offers the advantage of phylogenetic identification of detected soil microorganisms. Therefore, selection of either of these methods should be based on the specific research question under investigation.

  19. A Statistical Framework for Microbial Source Attribution: Measuring Uncertainty in Host Transmission Events Inferred from Genetic Data (Part 2 of a 2 Part Report)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Allen, J; Velsko, S

    2009-11-16

    This report explores the question of whether meaningful conclusions can be drawn regarding the transmission relationship between two microbial samples on the basis of differences observed between the two sample's respective genomes. Unlike similar forensic applications using human DNA, the rapid rate of microbial genome evolution combined with the dynamics of infectious disease require a shift in thinking on what it means for two samples to 'match' in support of a forensic hypothesis. Previous outbreaks for SARS-CoV, FMDV and HIV were examined to investigate the question of how microbial sequence data can be used to draw inferences that link two infected individuals by direct transmission. The results are counter intuitive with respect to human DNA forensic applications in that some genetic change rather than exact matching improve confidence in inferring direct transmission links, however, too much genetic change poses challenges, which can weaken confidence in inferred links. High rates of infection coupled with relatively weak selective pressure observed in the SARS-CoV and FMDV data lead to fairly low confidence for direct transmission links. Confidence values for forensic hypotheses increased when testing for the possibility that samples are separated by at most a few intermediate hosts. Moreover, the observed outbreak conditions support the potential to provide high confidence values for hypothesis that exclude direct transmission links. Transmission inferences are based on the total number of observed or inferred genetic changes separating two sequences rather than uniquely weighing the importance of any one genetic mismatch. Thus, inferences are surprisingly robust in the presence of sequencing errors provided the error rates are randomly distributed across all samples in the reference outbreak database and the novel sequence samples in question. When the number of observed nucleotide mutations are limited due to characteristics of the

  20. Current concept on the pathogenesis of inflammatory bowel disease-crosstalk between genetic and microbial factors: Pathogenic bacteria and altered bacterial sensing or changes in mucosal integrity take "toll"?

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Peter Laszlo Lakatos; Simon Fischer; Laszlo Lakatos; Istvan Gal; Janos Papp

    2006-01-01

    The pathogenesis of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)is only partially understood. Various environmental and host (e.g. genetic-, epithelial-, immune and nonimmune) factors are involved. It is a multifactorial polygenic disease with probable genetic heterogeneity.Some genes are associated with IBD itself, while others increase the risk of ulcerative colitis (UC) or Crohn's disease (CD) or are associated with disease location and/or behaviour. This review addresses recent advances in the genetics of IBD. The article discusses the current information on the crosstalk between microbial and genetic factors (e.g. NOD2/CARD15, SLC22A46A5 and DLG5). The genetic data acquired in recent years help in understanding the pathogenesis of IBD and can identify a number of potential targets for therapeutic intervention.In the future, genetics may help more accurately diagnose and predict disease course in IBD.

  1. Coexisting/Coexpressing Genomic Libraries (CoGeL) identify interactions among distantly located genetic loci for developing complex microbial phenotypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicolaou, Sergios A; Gaida, Stefan M; Papoutsakis, Eleftherios T

    2011-12-01

    In engineering novel microbial strains for biotechnological applications, beyond a priori identifiable pathways to be engineered, it is becoming increasingly important to develop complex, ill-defined cellular phenotypes. One approach is to screen genomic or metagenomic libraries to identify genes imparting desirable phenotypes, such as tolerance to stressors or novel catabolic programs. Such libraries are limited by their inability to identify interactions among distant genetic loci. To solve this problem, we constructed plasmid- and fosmid-based Escherichia coli Coexisting/Coexpressing Genomic Libraries (CoGeLs). As a proof of principle, four sets of two genes of the l-lysine biosynthesis pathway distantly located on the E. coli chromosome were knocked out. Upon transformation of these auxotrophs with CoGeLs, cells growing without supplementation were found to harbor library inserts containing the knocked-out genes demonstrating the interaction between the two libraries. CoGeLs were also screened to identify genetic loci that work synergistically to create the considerably more complex acid-tolerance phenotype. CoGeL screening identified combination of genes known to enhance acid tolerance (gadBC operon and adiC), but also identified the novel combination of arcZ and recA that greatly enhanced acid tolerance by 9000-fold. arcZ is a small RNA that we show increases pH tolerance alone and together with recA.

  2. 2015年中国微生物遗传学研究领域若干重要进展%Research advances on microbial genetics in China in 2015

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    谢建平; 韩玉波; 刘钢; 白林泉

    2016-01-01

    中国微生物遗传学研究在2015年取得了重要进展。本文回顾了2015年度中国本土科研团队在微生物遗传学领域取得的若干重要科研进展,扼要介绍了若干重点论文,展示了中国科学家在本领域的学术贡献。在基础微生物遗传学领域,明确了调控基因表达的一系列重要生物大分子的组成、结构和功能,解析了微生物免疫系统识别外源核酸片段的分子基础,阐明了多个微生物来源重要活性物质的生物合成途径及新颖的酶学反应过程,发现了微生物基因表达调控的新机理,在微生物发育、进化与群体行为生物学方面也取得一定进展。在工业微生物遗传学方面,阐明了微生物制造及其分子基础。在病原微生物遗传学方面,研究了多个致病菌的遗传调控,明晰了致病菌-宿主相互作用的遗传机制,在基因组水平解析了微生物耐药、新发病原和环境微生物的遗传机理,为致病菌防控新措施的研发提供了基础。在微生物多样性与环境微生物遗传学方面,展示了利用微生物遗传多样性的特点通过催化获得特定手性的化合物具有较好应用前景,肠道微生物组学研究方兴未艾。%In 2015, there are significant progresses in many aspects of the microbial genetics in China. To showcase the contribution of Chinese scientists in microbial genetics, this review surveys several notable progresses in microbial genetics made largely by Chinese scientists, and some key findings are highlighted. For the basic microbial genetics, the components, structures and functions of many macromolecule complexes involved in gene expression regulation have been elucidated. Moreover, the molecular basis underlying the recognition of foreign nucleic acids by microbial immune systems was unveiled. We also illustrated the biosynthetic pathways and regulators of multiple microbi-al compounds, novel enzyme reactions

  3. Applicability of universal Bacteroidales genetic marker for microbial monitoring of drinking water sources in comparison to conventional indicators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shahryari, A; Nikaeen, M; Khiadani Hajian, M; Nabavi, F; Hatamzadeh, M; Hassanzadeh, A

    2014-11-01

    Water quality monitoring is essential for the provision of safe drinking water. In this study, we compared a selection of fecal indicators with universal Bacteroidales genetic marker to identify fecal pollution of a variety of drinking water sources. A total of 60 samples were collected from water sources. The microbiological parameters included total coliforms, fecal coliforms, Escherichia coli and fecal streptococci as the fecal indicator bacteria (FIB), Clostridium perfringens and H2S bacteria as alternative indicators, universal Bacteroidales genetic marker as a promising alternative fecal indicator, and Salmonella spp., Shigella spp., and E. coli O157 as pathogenic bacteria. From 60 samples analyzed, Bacteroidales was the most frequently detected indicator followed by total coliforms. However, the Bacteroidales assay failed to detect the marker in nine samples positive for FIB and other alternative indicators. The results of our study showed that the absence of Bacteroidales is not necessarily an evidence of fecal and pathogenic bacteria absence and may be unable to ensure the safety of the water. Further research, however, is required for a better understanding of the use of a Bacteroidales genetic marker as an indicator in water quality monitoring programs.

  4. Genetics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Kaare; McGue, Matt

    2016-01-01

    The sequenced genomes of individuals aged ≥80 years, who were highly educated, self-referred volunteers and with no self-reported chronic diseases were compared to young controls. In these data, healthy ageing is a distinct phenotype from exceptional longevity and genetic factors that protect...

  5. Interaction between seroreactivity to microbial antigens and genetics in Crohn's disease: is there a role for defensins?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lakatos, P L; Altorjay, I; Mándi, Y; Lakatos, L; Tumpek, J; Kovacs, A; Molnar, T; Tulassay, Z; Miheller, P; Palatka, K; Szamosi, T; Fischer, S; Papp, J; Papp, M

    2008-06-01

    Antibodies against different microbial epitopes are associated with disease phenotype, may be of diagnostic importance and may reflect a loss of tolerance in Crohn's disease (CD). Recently, an association was reported between the presence of these antibodies and mutations in pattern receptor genes. Our aim was to investigate whether mutations in various genes other than NOD2/CARD15 or TLR4 associated with CD (NOD1/CARD4, DLG5 and DEFB1) may influence the presence of antibodies against bacterial proteins and carbohydrates in a Hungarian cohort of CD patients. Three hundred and seventy-six well-characterized, unrelated, consecutive CD patients (male/female: 191/185, age at onset: 29.1 +/- 12.9 years, duration: 7.9 +/- 11.7 years) were investigated. Sera were assayed for anti-Omp, anti-Saccharomyces cerevisiae antibodies (ASCAs) immunoglobulin (Ig) A and IgG, and antibodies against a mannan epitope of S. cerevisiae (gASCA), laminaribioside (ALCA), chitobioside (ACCA), and mannobioside (AMCA). NOD1/CARD4, DLG5 and DEFB1 variants were tested by polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism, and DEFB1 was genotyped in a subgroup of 160 patients. Detailed clinical phenotypes were determined by reviewing the patients' medical charts. The carriage of DEFB1 20A variant alleles less frequently led to antiglycan positivity compared with patients without (29.6% vs 46.2%, OR: 0.49, 95% CI: 0.25-0.97), regardless of disease location or behavior. Similar tendency was observed for DEFB1 44G (present: 21.6% vs absent: 10.2%, P = 0.06) and ALCA. A gene or serology dosage effect was not observed. However, no association was found between the DEFB1 G52A, DLG5 R30Q, and NOD1/CARD4 E266K variants and any of the serology markers. We found that variants in human beta-defensin 1 gene are inversely associated with antiglycan antibodies, further confirming an important role for innate immunity in the pathogenesis of CD.

  6. Microbial, metabolomic, and immunologic dynamics in a relapsing genetic mouse model of colitis induced by T-synthase deficiency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobs, Jonathan P; Lin, Lin; Goudarzi, Maryam; Ruegger, Paul; McGovern, Dermot P B; Fornace, Albert J; Borneman, James; Xia, Lijun; Braun, Jonathan

    2017-01-02

    Intestinal dysbiosis is thought to confer susceptibility to inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), but it is unknown whether dynamic changes in the microbiome contribute to fluctuations in disease activity. We explored this question using mice with intestine-specific deletion of C1galt1 (also known as T-synthase) (Tsyn mice). These mice develop spontaneous microbiota-dependent colitis with a remitting/relapsing course due to loss of mucin core-1 derived O-glycans. 16S rRNA sequencing and untargeted metabolomics demonstrated age-specific perturbations in the intestinal microbiome and metabolome of Tsyn mice compare with littermate controls at weeks 3 (disease onset), 5 (during remission), and 9 (after relapse). Colitis remission corresponded to increased levels of FoxP3+RORγt+CD4+ T cells in the colonic lamina propria that were positively correlated with operational taxonomic units (OTUs) in the S24-7 family and negatively correlated with OTUs in the Clostridiales order. Relapse was characterized by marked expansion of FoxP3-RORγt+CD4+ T cells expressing IFNγ and IL17A, which were associated with Clostridiales OTUs distinct from those negatively correlated with FoxP3+RORγt+CD4+ T cells. Our findings suggest that colitis remission and relapse in the Tsyn model may reflect alterations in the microbiome due to reduced core-1 O-glycosylation that shift the balance of regulatory and pro-inflammatory T cell subsets. We investigated whether genetic variation in C1galt1 correlated with the microbiome in a cohort of 78 Crohn's disease patients and 101 healthy controls. Polymorphisms near C1galt1 (rs10486157) and its molecular chaperone, Cosmc (rs4825729), were associated with altered composition of the colonic mucosal microbiota, supporting the relevance of core-1 O-glycosylation to host regulation of the microbiome.

  7. Field and microcosm experiments to evaluate the effects of agricultural Cu treatment on the density and genetic structure of microbial communities in two different soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ranjard, Lionel; Echairi, Abdelwahad; Nowak, Virginie; Lejon, David P H; Nouaïm, Rachida; Chaussod, Rémi

    2006-11-01

    The effects of Cu amendment on indigenous soil microorganisms were investigated in two soils, a calcareous silty clay (Ep) and a sandy soil (Au), by means of a 1-year field experiment and a two-month microcosm incubation. Cu was added as 'Bordeaux mixture' [CuSO(4), Ca(OH)(2)] at the standard rate used in viticulture (B1=16 kg Cu kg(-1) soil) and at a higher level of contamination (B3=48 kg Cu ha(-1) soil). More extractable Cu was observed in sandy soil (Au) than in silty soil (Ep). Furthermore, total Cu and Cu-EDTA declined with time in Au soil, whereas they remained stable in Ep soil. Quantitative modifications of the microflora were assessed by C-biomass measurements and qualitative modifications were assessed by the characterization of the genetic structure of bacterial and fungal communities from DNA directly extracted from the soil, using B- and F-ARISA (bacterial and fungal automated ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis). In the field study, no significant modifications were observed in C-biomass whereas microcosm incubation showed a decrease in B3 contamination only. ARISA fingerprinting showed slight but significant modifications of bacterial and fungal communities in field and microcosm incubation. These modifications were transient in all cases, suggesting a short-term effect of Cu stress. Microcosm experiments detected the microbial community modifications with greater precision in the short-term, while field experiments showed that the biological effects of Cu contamination may be overcome or hidden by pedo-climatic variations.

  8. Enhancing Management Tools: Molecular Genetic Tracking to Target Microbial Pollution Sources in South Florida Coral Reefs, Year 1 - CRCP project #1114

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Both coastal inlets and treated wastewater outfalls are recognized as major pathways for microbial contaminants from Land-Based Sources of Pollution (LBSP) to enter...

  9. DECOMPOSTION OF GENETICALLY ENGINEERED TOBACCO UNDER FIELD CONDITIONS: PERSISTENCE OF THE PROTEINASE INHIBITOR I PRODUCT AND EFFECTS OF SOIL MICROBIAL RESPIRATION AND PROTOZOA, NEMATODE AND MICROARTHR

    Science.gov (United States)

    1. To evaluate the potential effects of genetically engineered (transgenic) plants on soil ecosystems, litterbags containing leaves of non-engineered (parental) and transgenic tobacco plants were buried in field plots. The transgenic tobacco plants were genetically engineered to ...

  10. Genetics Home Reference: Blau syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... a site of injury or disease to fight microbial invaders and facilitate tissue repair. The NOD2 gene ... What are the different ways in which a genetic condition can be inherited? More about Inheriting Genetic ...

  11. Field release of genetically modified Pseudomonas putida WCS358r : molecular analysis of effects on microbial communities in the rhizosphere of wheat

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Viebahn, Mareike

    2005-01-01

    Genetically modified microorganisms (GMMs) with enhanced biocontrol activity are attractive to apply in agriculture. To investigate potential ecological risks of field introduction of GMMs, effects of P. putida strain WCS358r and two genetically modified derivatives of this strain on the indigenous

  12. Microbial biosensors for environmental monitoring

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David VOGRINC

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Microbial biosensors are analytical devices capable of sensing substances in the environment due to the specific biological reaction of the microorganism or its parts. Construction of a microbial biosensor requires knowledge of microbial response to the specific analyte. Linking this response with the quantitative data, using a transducer, is the crucial step in the construction of a biosensor. Regarding the transducer type, biosensors are divided into electrochemical, optical biosensors and microbial fuel cells. The use of the proper configuration depends on the selection of the biosensing element. With the use of transgenic E. coli strains, bioluminescence or fluorescence based biosensors were developed. Microbial fuel cells enable the use of the heterogeneous microbial populations, isolated from wastewater. Different microorganisms are used for different pollutants – pesticides, heavy metals, phenolic compounds, organic waste, etc. Biosensing enables measurement of their concentration and their toxic or genotoxic effects on the microbes. Increasing environmental awareness has contributed to the increase of interest for biomonitoring. Although technologies, such as bioinformatics and genetic engineering, allow us to design complex and efficient microbial biosensors for environmental pollutants, the transfer of the laboratory work to the field still remains a problem to solve.

  13. A Comparison of Soil microbial community structure, protozoa and nematodes in field plots of conventional and genetically modified maize expressing the Bacillus thuringiensis Cry1Ab toxin

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Griffiths, B. S.; Caul, S.; Thompson, J.

    2005-01-01

    Field trials were established at three European sites (Denmark, Eastern France, South-West France) of genetically modified maize (Zea mays L.) expressing the CryIAb Bacillus thuringiensis toxin (Bt), the near-isogenic non-Bt cultivar, another conventional maize cultivar and grass. Soil from Denma...... in these agricultural systems....

  14. Soil microbial toxicity of eight polycyclic aromatic compounds: effects on nitrification, the genetic diversity of bacteria, and the total number of protozoans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sverdrup, Line Emilie; Ekelund, Flemming; Krogh, Paul Henning;

    2002-01-01

    Eight polycyclic aromatic compounds (PACs) were tested for their toxic effect on the soil nitrification process, bacterial genetic diversity, and the total number of protozoans (naked amoebae and heterotrophic flagellates). After four weeks of exposure in a well-characterized agricultural soil...

  15. Microbial xanthophylls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhosale, Prakash; Bernstein, Paul S

    2005-09-01

    Xanthophylls are oxygenated carotenoids abundant in the human food supply. Lutein, zeaxanthin, and cryptoxanthin are major xanthophyll carotenoids in human plasma. The consumption of these xanthophylls is directly associated with reduction in the risk of cancers, cardiovascular disease, age-related macular degeneration, and cataract formation. Canthaxanthin and astaxanthin also have considerable importance in aquaculture for salmonid and crustacean pigmentation, and are of commercial interest for the pharmaceutical and food industries. Chemical synthesis is a major source for the heavy demand of xanthophylls in the consumer market; however, microbial producers also have potential as commercial sources. In this review, we discuss the biosynthesis, commercial utility, and major microbial sources of xanthophylls. We also present a critical review of current research and technologies involved in promoting microbes as potential commercial sources for mass production.

  16. Distribution and genetic diversity of microbial populations in the pilot-scale biofilter for simultaneous removal of ammonia, iron and manganese from real groundwater.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Qingfeng; Nengzi, Lichao; Bao, Linlin; Huang, Yang; Liu, Shengyu; Cheng, Xiuwen; Li, Bo; Zhang, Jie

    2017-09-01

    A pilot-scale biofilter treating real groundwater was developed in this study, which showed that ammonia, iron and manganese were mainly removed at 0.4, 0.4 and 0.8 m of the filter bed, respectively, and the corresponding removal efficiencies were 90.82%, 95.48% and 95.90% in steady phase, respectively. The variation of microbial populations in the biofilter during start-up process was also investigated using high-throughput pyrosequencing (HTP). Results indicated that the main functional microbes for ammonia, iron and manganese removal were Nitrosomonas, Crenothrix and Crenothrix, respectively, which was mainly distributed at 0.8, 0, and 0.8 m of the filter bed with a corresponding abundance of 8.7%, 28.12% and 11.33% in steady phase, respectively. Kinds of other bacteria which may be related to methane, hydrogen sulfide and organic matter removal, were also found. In addition, small part of archaea was also detected, such as Candidatus Nitrososphaera, which plays a role in nitritation. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Evolutionary perspectives in a mutualism of sepiolid squid and bioluminescent bacteria: combined usage of microbial experimental evolution and temporal population genetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soto, W; Punke, E B; Nishiguchi, M K

    2012-05-01

    The symbiosis between marine bioluminescent Vibrio bacteria and the sepiolid squid Euprymna is a model for studying animal-bacterial Interactions. Vibrio symbionts native to particular Euprymna species are competitively dominant, capable of outcompeting foreign Vibrio strains from other Euprymna host species. Despite competitive dominance, secondary colonization events by invading nonnative Vibrio fischeri have occurred. Competitive dominance can be offset through superior nonnative numbers and advantage of early start host colonization by nonnatives, granting nonnative vibrios an opportunity to establish beachheads in foreign Euprymna hosts. Here, we show that nonnative V. fischeri are capable of rapid adaptation to novel sepiolid squid hosts by serially passaging V. fischeri JRM200 (native to Hawaiian Euprymna scolopes) lines through the novel Australian squid host E. tasmanica for 500 generations. These experiments were complemented by a temporal population genetics survey of V. fischeri, collected from E. tasmanica over a decade, which provided a perspective from the natural history of V. fischeri evolution over 15,000-20,000 generations in E. tasmanica. No symbiont anagenic evolution within squids was observed, as competitive dominance does not purge V. fischeri genetic diversity through time. Instead, abiotic factors affecting abundance of V. fischeri variants in the planktonic phase sustain temporal symbiont diversity, a property itself of ecological constraints imposed by V. fischeri host adaptation. © 2012 The Author(s). Evolution© 2012 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  18. Genetics Home Reference: familial cold autoinflammatory syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... a site of injury or disease to fight microbial invaders and facilitate tissue repair. When this has ... What are the different ways in which a genetic condition can be inherited? More about Inheriting Genetic ...

  19. Microbial Metalloproteomics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter-Leon Hagedoorn

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Metalloproteomics is a rapidly developing field of science that involves the comprehensive analysis of all metal-containing or metal-binding proteins in a biological sample. The purpose of this review is to offer a comprehensive overview of the research involving approaches that can be categorized as inductively coupled plasma (ICP-MS based methods, X-ray absorption/fluorescence, radionuclide based methods and bioinformatics. Important discoveries in microbial proteomics will be reviewed, as well as the outlook to new emerging approaches and research areas.

  20. Microbial Ecosystems, Protection of

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bodelier, P.L.E.; Nelson, K.E.

    2014-01-01

    Synonyms Conservation of microbial diversity and ecosystem functions provided by microbes; Preservation of microbial diversity and ecosystem functions provided by microbes Definition The use, management, and conservation of ecosystems in order to preserve microbial diversity and functioning.

  1. Microbial Ecosystems, Protection of

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bodelier, P.L.E.; Nelson, K.E.

    2014-01-01

    Synonyms Conservation of microbial diversity and ecosystem functions provided by microbes; Preservation of microbial diversity and ecosystem functions provided by microbes Definition The use, management, and conservation of ecosystems in order to preserve microbial diversity and functioning. Introdu

  2. Microbial synthetic biology for human therapeutics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, Aastha; Bhatia, Pooja; Chugh, Archana

    2012-06-01

    The emerging field of synthetic biology holds tremendous potential for developing novel drugs to treat various human conditions. The current study discusses the scope of synthetic biology for human therapeutics via microbial approach. In this context, synthetic biology aims at designing, engineering and building new microbial synthetic cells that do not pre-exist in nature as well as re-engineer existing microbes for synthesis of therapeutic products. It is expected that the construction of novel microbial genetic circuitry for human therapeutics will greatly benefit from the data generated by 'omics' approaches and multidisciplinary nature of synthetic biology. Development of novel antimicrobial drugs and vaccines by engineering microbial systems are a promising area of research in the field of synthetic biology for human theragnostics. Expression of plant based medicinal compounds in the microbial system using synthetic biology tools is another avenue dealt in the present study. Additionally, the study suggest that the traditional medicinal knowledge can do value addition for developing novel drugs in the microbial systems using synthetic biology tools. The presented work envisions the success of synthetic biology for human therapeutics via microbial approach in a holistic manner. Keeping this in view, various legal and socio-ethical concerns emerging from the use of synthetic biology via microbial approach such as patenting, biosafety and biosecurity issues have been touched upon in the later sections.

  3. Universality of human microbial dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bashan, Amir; Gibson, Travis E.; Friedman, Jonathan; Carey, Vincent J.; Weiss, Scott T.; Hohmann, Elizabeth L.; Liu, Yang-Yu

    2016-06-01

    Human-associated microbial communities have a crucial role in determining our health and well-being, and this has led to the continuing development of microbiome-based therapies such as faecal microbiota transplantation. These microbial communities are very complex, dynamic and highly personalized ecosystems, exhibiting a high degree of inter-individual variability in both species assemblages and abundance profiles. It is not known whether the underlying ecological dynamics of these communities, which can be parameterized by growth rates, and intra- and inter-species interactions in population dynamics models, are largely host-independent (that is, universal) or host-specific. If the inter-individual variability reflects host-specific dynamics due to differences in host lifestyle, physiology or genetics, then generic microbiome manipulations may have unintended consequences, rendering them ineffective or even detrimental. Alternatively, microbial ecosystems of different subjects may exhibit universal dynamics, with the inter-individual variability mainly originating from differences in the sets of colonizing species. Here we develop a new computational method to characterize human microbial dynamics. By applying this method to cross-sectional data from two large-scale metagenomic studies—the Human Microbiome Project and the Student Microbiome Project—we show that gut and mouth microbiomes display pronounced universal dynamics, whereas communities associated with certain skin sites are probably shaped by differences in the host environment. Notably, the universality of gut microbial dynamics is not observed in subjects with recurrent Clostridium difficile infection but is observed in the same set of subjects after faecal microbiota transplantation. These results fundamentally improve our understanding of the processes that shape human microbial ecosystems, and pave the way to designing general microbiome-based therapies.

  4. Heavy metal, proximate and microbial profile of some selected ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Dr. Ogundiran

    2014-03-05

    Mar 5, 2014 ... The study on the elemental, proximate and microbial composition of fresh samples of Scomber .... package. .... hazardous for fish genetic material according to the study ... fishes for longer preservation time in agreement with.

  5. Role of cryptic genes in microbial evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, B G; Yokoyama, S; Calhoun, D H

    1983-12-01

    Cryptic genes are phenotypically silent DNA sequences, not normally expressed during the life cycle of an individual. They may, however, be activated in a few individuals of a large population by mutation, recombination, insertion elements, or other genetic mechanisms. A consideration of the microbial literature concerning biochemical evolution, physiology, and taxonomy provides the basis for a hypothesis of microbial adaptation and evolution by mutational activation of cryptic genes. Evidence is presented, and a mathematical model is derived, indicating that powerful and biologically important mechanisms exist to prevent the loss of cryptic genes. We propose that cryptic genes persist as a vital element of the genetic repertoire, ready for recall by mutational activation in future generations. Cryptic genes provide a versatile endogenous genetic reservoir that enhances the adaptive potential of a species by a mechanism that is independent of genetic exchange.

  6. An ontology for microbial phenotypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chibucos, Marcus C; Zweifel, Adrienne E; Herrera, Jonathan C; Meza, William; Eslamfam, Shabnam; Uetz, Peter; Siegele, Deborah A; Hu, James C; Giglio, Michelle G

    2014-11-30

    Phenotypic data are routinely used to elucidate gene function in organisms amenable to genetic manipulation. However, previous to this work, there was no generalizable system in place for the structured storage and retrieval of phenotypic information for bacteria. The Ontology of Microbial Phenotypes (OMP) has been created to standardize the capture of such phenotypic information from microbes. OMP has been built on the foundations of the Basic Formal Ontology and the Phenotype and Trait Ontology. Terms have logical definitions that can facilitate computational searching of phenotypes and their associated genes. OMP can be accessed via a wiki page as well as downloaded from SourceForge. Initial annotations with OMP are being made for Escherichia coli using a wiki-based annotation capture system. New OMP terms are being concurrently developed as annotation proceeds. We anticipate that diverse groups studying microbial genetics and associated phenotypes will employ OMP for standardizing microbial phenotype annotation, much as the Gene Ontology has standardized gene product annotation. The resulting OMP resource and associated annotations will facilitate prediction of phenotypes for unknown genes and result in new experimental characterization of phenotypes and functions.

  7. Pyrosequencing for microbial identification and characterization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cummings, Patrick J; Ahmed, Ray; Durocher, Jeffrey A; Jessen, Adam; Vardi, Tamar; Obom, Kristina M

    2013-08-22

    Pyrosequencing is a versatile technique that facilitates microbial genome sequencing that can be used to identify bacterial species, discriminate bacterial strains and detect genetic mutations that confer resistance to anti-microbial agents. The advantages of pyrosequencing for microbiology applications include rapid and reliable high-throughput screening and accurate identification of microbes and microbial genome mutations. Pyrosequencing involves sequencing of DNA by synthesizing the complementary strand a single base at a time, while determining the specific nucleotide being incorporated during the synthesis reaction. The reaction occurs on immobilized single stranded template DNA where the four deoxyribonucleotides (dNTP) are added sequentially and the unincorporated dNTPs are enzymatically degraded before addition of the next dNTP to the synthesis reaction. Detection of the specific base incorporated into the template is monitored by generation of chemiluminescent signals. The order of dNTPs that produce the chemiluminescent signals determines the DNA sequence of the template. The real-time sequencing capability of pyrosequencing technology enables rapid microbial identification in a single assay. In addition, the pyrosequencing instrument, can analyze the full genetic diversity of anti-microbial drug resistance, including typing of SNPs, point mutations, insertions, and deletions, as well as quantification of multiple gene copies that may occur in some anti-microbial resistance patterns.

  8. Security evaluation of compounded microbial flocculant

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    马放; 王博; 范春; 杨基先; 李百祥; 刘艳滨

    2004-01-01

    A new kind of compounded microbial flocculant (CMBF) for water and wastewater treatment has been developed through biological technology. In order to discuss its biological security, four groups of experiments, rat acute toxicity test via mouth, salmonella assay in vitro, mouse micronucleus in vivo test and teratogenesis test were conducted to evaluate its general toxicity, genotoxicity and generative toxicity. The experimental results showed that this type of compounded microbial fiocculant was a substantial non-toxic substance based on the fact that LD50 value was over 10 mg/kg. The results from salmonella in vivo test and mouse micronucleus in vivo test revealed that the compounded microbial flocculant is a genetically non-toxic substance. Furthermore, compounded microbial flocculant has little effect on the growth of all the rats, and any morphologic abnormal phenomenon hasnt appeared.

  9. Microbial Exopolysaccharides: Biosynthesis and Potential Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. V. Madhuri

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Many bacteria synthesize extracellular polysaccharides (EPSs with commercially significant physiological and therapeutic activities. Microbial polysaccharides have also been reported to have potential therapeutic applications. Recently, much attention has been devoted to the microbial exopolysaccharides (EPSs due to their numerous health benefits.EPSs from lactic acid bacteria are reported to possess antitumor effects, immunostimulatory activity, and the ability to lower blood cholesterol. EPSs also offer an alternative class of biothickeners that are widely used in the food and dairy industries and have been proven to provide strong emulsifying activity, which is important in many food formulations. It is also important to understand the mechanism of microbial biosynthesis of EPSs in order to enhance their production by genetic alterations. The potential applications and the mode of microbial biosynthesis of the EPSs have been presented in this article.

  10. Multifactorial diversity sustains microbial community stability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Erkus, O.; Jager, de V.C.L.; Spus, M.; Alen-Boerrigter, van I.J.; Rijswijck, van I.M.H.; Hazelwood, L.; Janssen, P.W.; Hijum, van S.A.F.T.; Kleerebezem, M.; Smid, E.J.

    2013-01-01

    Maintenance of a high degree of biodiversity in homogeneous environments is poorly understood. A complex cheese starter culture with a long history of use was characterized as a model system to study simple microbial communities. Eight distinct genetic lineages were identified, encompassing two spec

  11. Predictive Behavior Within Microbial Genetic Networks

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Ilias Tagkopoulos; Yir-Chung Liu; Saeed Tavazoie

    2008-01-01

    ... to metazoan nervous systems. We show that in silico biochemical networks, evolving randomly under precisely defined complex habitats, capture the dynamical, multidimensional structure of diverse environments by forming internal...

  12. Microbial conversions of terpenoids

    OpenAIRE

    Parshikov, Igor A

    2015-01-01

    The monograph describes examples of the application of microbial technology for obtaining of derivatives of terpenoids. Obtaining new derivatives of terpenoids, including artemisinin derivatives with increased antimalarial activity, is an important goal of research in microbial biotechnology and medicinal chemistry.

  13. Childhood microbial keratitis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdullah G Al Otaibi

    2012-01-01

    Conclusion: Children with suspected microbial keratitis require comprehensive evaluation and management. Early recognition, identifying the predisposing factors and etiological microbial organisms, and instituting appropriate treatment measures have a crucial role in outcome. Ocular trauma was the leading cause of childhood microbial keratitis in our study.

  14. Grappling with Proteus: Population level approaches to understanding microbial diversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mallory J. Choudoir

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available The emerging fields of microbial population genetics and genomics provide an avenue to study the ecological rules that govern how communities form, function, and evolve. Our struggle to understand the causes and consequences of microbial diversity stems from our inability to define ecologically and evolutionarily meaningful units of diversity. The 16S rRNA-based tools that have been so useful in charting microbial diversity may lack sufficient sensitivity to answer many questions about the ecology and evolution of microbes. Examining genetic diversity with increased resolution is vital to understanding the forces shaping community structure. Population genetic analyses enabled by whole genome sequencing, multilocus sequence analyses, or single nucleotide polymorphism analyses permit the testing of hypotheses pertaining to the geographic distribution, migration, and habitat preference of specific microbial lineages. Furthermore, these approaches can reveal patterns of gene exchange within and between populations and communities. Tools from microbial population genetics and population genomics can be used to increase the resolution with which we measure microbial diversity, enabling a focus on the scale of genetic diversity at which

  15. Microbial interactions: ecology in a molecular perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braga, Raíssa Mesquita; Dourado, Manuella Nóbrega; Araújo, Welington Luiz

    2016-12-01

    The microorganism-microorganism or microorganism-host interactions are the key strategy to colonize and establish in a variety of different environments. These interactions involve all ecological aspects, including physiochemical changes, metabolite exchange, metabolite conversion, signaling, chemotaxis and genetic exchange resulting in genotype selection. In addition, the establishment in the environment depends on the species diversity, since high functional redundancy in the microbial community increases the competitive ability of the community, decreasing the possibility of an invader to establish in this environment. Therefore, these associations are the result of a co-evolution process that leads to the adaptation and specialization, allowing the occupation of different niches, by reducing biotic and abiotic stress or exchanging growth factors and signaling. Microbial interactions occur by the transference of molecular and genetic information, and many mechanisms can be involved in this exchange, such as secondary metabolites, siderophores, quorum sensing system, biofilm formation, and cellular transduction signaling, among others. The ultimate unit of interaction is the gene expression of each organism in response to an environmental (biotic or abiotic) stimulus, which is responsible for the production of molecules involved in these interactions. Therefore, in the present review, we focused on some molecular mechanisms involved in the microbial interaction, not only in microbial-host interaction, which has been exploited by other reviews, but also in the molecular strategy used by different microorganisms in the environment that can modulate the establishment and structuration of the microbial community.

  16. Microbial interactions: ecology in a molecular perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raíssa Mesquita Braga

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT The microorganism-microorganism or microorganism-host interactions are the key strategy to colonize and establish in a variety of different environments. These interactions involve all ecological aspects, including physiochemical changes, metabolite exchange, metabolite conversion, signaling, chemotaxis and genetic exchange resulting in genotype selection. In addition, the establishment in the environment depends on the species diversity, since high functional redundancy in the microbial community increases the competitive ability of the community, decreasing the possibility of an invader to establish in this environment. Therefore, these associations are the result of a co-evolution process that leads to the adaptation and specialization, allowing the occupation of different niches, by reducing biotic and abiotic stress or exchanging growth factors and signaling. Microbial interactions occur by the transference of molecular and genetic information, and many mechanisms can be involved in this exchange, such as secondary metabolites, siderophores, quorum sensing system, biofilm formation, and cellular transduction signaling, among others. The ultimate unit of interaction is the gene expression of each organism in response to an environmental (biotic or abiotic stimulus, which is responsible for the production of molecules involved in these interactions. Therefore, in the present review, we focused on some molecular mechanisms involved in the microbial interaction, not only in microbial-host interaction, which has been exploited by other reviews, but also in the molecular strategy used by different microorganisms in the environment that can modulate the establishment and structuration of the microbial community.

  17. Genetics Home Reference: neonatal onset multisystem inflammatory disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... a site of injury or disease to fight microbial invaders and facilitate tissue repair. When this has ... What are the different ways in which a genetic condition can be inherited? More about Inheriting Genetic ...

  18. Research of radiation-resistant microbial organisms

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kim, Dongho; Lim, Sangyong; Joe, Minho; Park, Haejoon; Song, Hyunpa; Im, Seunghun; Kim, Haram; Kim, Whajung; Choi, Jinsu; Park, Jongchun

    2012-01-15

    Many extremophiles including radiation-resistant bacteria Deinococcus radiodurans have special characteristics such as novel enzymes and physiological active substances different from known biological materials and are being in the spotlight of biotechnology science. In this research, basic technologies for the production of new genetic resources and microbial strains by a series of studies in radiation-resistant microbial organisms were investigated and developed. Mechanisms required for radiation-resistant in Deinococcus radiodurans were partly defined by analyzing the function of dinB, pprI, recG, DRA{sub 0}279, pprM, and two-component signal transduction systems. To apply genetic resource and functional materials from Deinococcus species, omics analysis in response to cadmium, construction of macroscopic biosensor, and characterization of carotenoids and chaperon protein were performed. Additionally, potential use of D. geothermalis in monosaccharide production from non-biodegradable plant materials was evaluated. Novel radiation resistant yeasts and bacteria were isolated and identified from environmental samples to obtain microbial and genomic resources. An optimal radiation mutant breeding method was set up for efficient and rapid isolation of target microbial mutants. Furthermore, an efficient ethanol producing mutant strain with high production yield and productivity was constructed using the breeding method in collaboration with Korea Research Institute of Bioscience and Biotechnology. Three Deinococcal bioindicators for radiation dosage confirmation after radiation sterilization process were developed. These results provide a comprehensive information for novel functional genetic elements, enzymes, and physiological active substances production or application. Eventually, industrial microbial cell factories based on radiation resistant microbial genomes can be developed and the technologies can be diffused to bioindustry continuously by this project.

  19. Whole-Genome Sequencing in Microbial Forensic Analysis of Gamma-Irradiated Microbial Materials

    OpenAIRE

    Broomall, Stacey M.; Ait Ichou, Mohamed; Krepps, Michael D.; Johnsky, Lauren A.; Mark A Karavis; Kyle S Hubbard; Insalaco, Joseph M.; Betters, Janet L.; Redmond, Brady W.; Rivers, Bryan A.; Liem, Alvin T.; Hill, Jessica M.; Fochler, Edward T.; Roth, Pierce A.; Rosenzweig, C. Nicole

    2016-01-01

    Effective microbial forensic analysis of materials used in a potential biological attack requires robust methods of morphological and genetic characterization of the attack materials in order to enable the attribution of the materials to potential sources and to exclude other potential sources. The genetic homogeneity and potential intersample variability of many of the category A to C bioterrorism agents offer a particular challenge to the generation of attributive signatures, potentially re...

  20. Microbial Profiling Of Cyanobacteria From VIT Lake

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Swati Singh

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The application of molecular biological methods to study the diversity and ecology of micro-organisms in natural environments has been practice in mid-1980. The aim of our research is to access the diversity composition and functioning of complex microbial community found in VIT Lake. Molecular ecology is a new field in which microbes can be recognized and their function can be understood at the DNA or RNA level which is useful for constructing genetically modified microbes by recombinant DNA technology for reputed use in the environment. In this research first we will isolate cyanobacteria in lab using conventional methods like broth culture and spread plate method then we will analyze their morphology using various staining methods and DNA and protein composition using electrophoresis method. The applications of community profiling approaches will advance our understanding of the functional role of microbial diversity in VIT Lake controls on microbial community composition.

  1. Microbial steroid transformations: current state and prospects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donova, Marina V; Egorova, Olga V

    2012-06-01

    Studies of steroid modifications catalyzed by microbial whole cells represent a well-established research area in white biotechnology. Still, advances over the last decade in genetic and metabolic engineering, whole-cell biocatalysis in non-conventional media, and process monitoring raised research in this field to a new level. This review summarizes the data on microbial steroid conversion obtained since 2003. The key reactions of structural steroid functionalization by microorganisms are highlighted including sterol side-chain degradation, hydroxylation at various positions of the steroid core, and redox reactions. We also describe methods for enhancement of bioprocess productivity, selectivity of target reactions, and application of microbial transformations for production of valuable pharmaceutical ingredients and precursors. Challenges and prospects of whole-cell biocatalysis applications in steroid industry are discussed.

  2. Genetic Types and Their Classification for the Microbial Induced Sedimentary Structure within Terrigenous Clastic rocks%陆源碎屑岩中微生物诱发的沉积构造的成因类型及其分类体系

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    梅冥相

    2011-01-01

    The term algal-mat that is traditionally used in long time was changed into the term microbial mat and was widely adopted, which is resulted from the conceptual transformation of the blue-green algae that should be grouped into cyanobacteria. Long-time researches and studies indicate that the microbial mat is actually a complex microbial community, and this microbial community is actually a consortium of varied kinds of symbiotic/syntrophic organisms that embrace all metabolic pathways that ever emerged on Earth. Although there are some disagreements, an important idea that carbonate stromatolites were the constructs of algae mats (microbial mats) urges sedimentologists to seek the imprint of microbial activities in terrigenous clastic rocks. The reinterpretation for some problematic trace fossils that were found in the early times results in emergence of some new concepts such as the mat ground and the matground structure. Also, more and more observations of the microbial-mat relative features within clastic rocks led to a new recognition, i.e. the microbial induced sedimentary structure (MISS) can be grouped into a fifth category of primary sedimentary structures. On the basis of emphasizing that microbial mats influence the depositional fabric of clastic deposits across a wide range of physical, chemical and biological processes, the microbial induced sedimentary structures can further be grouped into several genetic categories that contain the microbial-mat growth, the metabolism, the disruption, the decomposing and the diagenesis types. The establishment of both the genetic type and the classification for the microbial-mat feature that are left in elastic rocks promote the development o~ the microbial-mat sedimentology in elastic rocks and within the framework of geobiology.%当蓝绿藻被修正为蓝细菌的时候,多年使用的藻席的概念就被修正为微生物席.科学家们长期观察和研究的结果表明:微生物席实际上是一种多种

  3. Microbial Forensics: A Scientific Assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Keim, Paul

    2003-02-17

    Microorganisms have been used as weapons in criminal acts, most recently highlighted by the terrorist attack using anthrax in the fall of 2001. Although such ''biocrimes'' are few compared with other crimes, these acts raise questions about the ability to provide forensic evidence for criminal prosecution that can be used to identify the source of the microorganisms used as a weapon and, more importantly, the perpetrator of the crime. Microbiologists traditionally investigate the sources of microorganisms in epidemiological investigations, but rarely have been asked to assist in criminal investigations. A colloquium was convened by the American Academy of Microbiology in Burlington, Vermont, on June 7-9, 2002, in which 25 interdisciplinary, expert scientists representing evolutionary microbiology, ecology, genomics, genetics, bioinformatics, forensics, chemistry, and clinical microbiology, deliberated on issues in microbial forensics. The colloquium's purpose was to consider issues relating to microbial forensics, which included a detailed identification of a microorganism used in a bioattack and analysis of such a microorganism and related materials to identify its forensically meaningful source--the perpetrators of the bioattack. The colloquium examined the application of microbial forensics to assist in resolving biocrimes with a focus on what research and education are needed to facilitate the use of microbial forensics in criminal investigations and the subsequent prosecution of biocrimes, including acts of bioterrorism. First responders must consider forensic issues, such as proper collection of samples to allow for optimal laboratory testing, along with maintaining a chain of custody that will support eventual prosecution. Because a biocrime may not be immediately apparent, a linkage must be made between routine diagnosis, epidemiological investigation, and criminal investigation. There is a need for establishing standard operating

  4. MICROBIAL FUEL CELL

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    2008-01-01

    A novel microbial fuel cell construction for the generation of electrical energy. The microbial fuel cell comprises: (i) an anode electrode, (ii) a cathode chamber, said cathode chamber comprising an in let through which an influent enters the cathode chamber, an outlet through which an effluent...

  5. Biofilms: A microbial home

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chandki, Rita; Banthia, Priyank; Banthia, Ruchi

    2011-01-01

    Microbial biofilms are mainly implicated in etiopathogenesis of caries and periodontal disease. Owing to its properties, these pose great challenges. Continuous and regular disruption of these biofilms is imperative for prevention and management of oral diseases. This essay provides a detailed insight into properties, mechanisms of etiopathogenesis, detection and removal of these microbial biofilms. PMID:21976832

  6. Biofilms: A microbial home

    OpenAIRE

    Chandki, Rita; Banthia, Priyank; Banthia, Ruchi

    2011-01-01

    Microbial biofilms are mainly implicated in etiopathogenesis of caries and periodontal disease. Owing to its properties, these pose great challenges. Continuous and regular disruption of these biofilms is imperative for prevention and management of oral diseases. This essay provides a detailed insight into properties, mechanisms of etiopathogenesis, detection and removal of these microbial biofilms.

  7. Microbial Inoculants and Their Impact on Soil Microbial Communities: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Darine Trabelsi

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The knowledge of the survival of inoculated fungal and bacterial strains in field and the effects of their release on the indigenous microbial communities has been of great interest since the practical use of selected natural or genetically modified microorganisms has been developed. Soil inoculation or seed bacterization may lead to changes in the structure of the indigenous microbial communities, which is important with regard to the safety of introduction of microbes into the environment. Many reports indicate that application of microbial inoculants can influence, at least temporarily, the resident microbial communities. However, the major concern remains regarding how the impact on taxonomic groups can be related to effects on functional capabilities of the soil microbial communities. These changes could be the result of direct effects resulting from trophic competitions and antagonistic/synergic interactions with the resident microbial populations, or indirect effects mediated by enhanced root growth and exudation. Combination of inoculants will not necessarily produce an additive or synergic effect, but rather a competitive process. The extent of the inoculation impact on the subsequent crops in relation to the buffering capacity of the plant-soil-biota is still not well documented and should be the focus of future research.

  8. A human gut microbial gene catalogue established by metagenomic sequencing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    dos Santos, Marcelo Bertalan Quintanilha; Sicheritz-Pontén, Thomas; Nielsen, Henrik Bjørn

    2010-01-01

    , from faecal samples of 124 European individuals. The gene set, ,150 times larger than the human gene complement, contains an overwhelming majority of the prevalent (more frequent) microbial genes of the cohort and probably includes a large proportion of the prevalent human intestinal microbial genes......To understand the impact of gut microbes on human health and well-being it is crucial to assess their genetic potential. Here we describe the Illumina-based metagenomic sequencing, assembly and characterization of 3.3 million non-redundant microbial genes, derived from 576.7 gigabases of sequence...

  9. Genetic Discrimination

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... in Genetics Archive Regulation of Genetic Tests Genetic Discrimination Overview Many Americans fear that participating in research ... I) and employment (Title II). Read more Genetic Discrimination and Other Laws Genetic Discrimination and Other Laws ...

  10. Microbial responses to environmental arsenic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Páez-Espino, David; Tamames, Javier; de Lorenzo, Víctor; Cánovas, David

    2009-02-01

    Microorganisms have evolved dynamic mechanisms for facing the toxicity of arsenic in the environment. In this sense, arsenic speciation and mobility is also affected by the microbial metabolism that participates in the biogeochemical cycle of the element. The ars operon constitutes the most ubiquitous and important scheme of arsenic tolerance in bacteria. This system mediates the extrusion of arsenite out of the cells. There are also other microbial activities that alter the chemical characteristics of arsenic: some strains are able to oxidize arsenite or reduce arsenate as part of their respiratory processes. These type of microorganisms require membrane associated proteins that transfer electrons from or to arsenic (AoxAB and ArrAB, respectively). Other enzymatic transformations, such as methylation-demethylation reactions, exchange inorganic arsenic into organic forms contributing to its complex environmental turnover. This short review highlights recent studies in ecology, biochemistry and molecular biology of these processes in bacteria, and also provides some examples of genetic engineering for enhanced arsenic accumulation based on phytochelatins or metallothionein-like proteins.

  11. Microbial biodegradation of polyaromatic hydrocarbons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Ri-He; Xiong, Ai-Sheng; Xue, Yong; Fu, Xiao-Yan; Gao, Feng; Zhao, Wei; Tian, Yong-Sheng; Yao, Quan-Hong

    2008-11-01

    Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are widespread in various ecosystems and are pollutants of great concern due to their potential toxicity, mutagenicity and carcinogenicity. Because of their hydrophobic nature, most PAHs bind to particulates in soil and sediments, rendering them less available for biological uptake. Microbial degradation represents the major mechanism responsible for the ecological recovery of PAH-contaminated sites. The goal of this review is to provide an outline of the current knowledge of microbial PAH catabolism. In the past decade, the genetic regulation of the pathway involved in naphthalene degradation by different gram-negative and gram-positive bacteria was studied in great detail. Based on both genomic and proteomic data, a deeper understanding of some high-molecular-weight PAH degradation pathways in bacteria was provided. The ability of nonligninolytic and ligninolytic fungi to transform or metabolize PAH pollutants has received considerable attention, and the biochemical principles underlying the degradation of PAHs were examined. In addition, this review summarizes the information known about the biochemical processes that determine the fate of the individual components of PAH mixtures in polluted ecosystems. A deeper understanding of the microorganism-mediated mechanisms of catalysis of PAHs will facilitate the development of new methods to enhance the bioremediation of PAH-contaminated sites.

  12. Manipulation of Biofilm Microbial Ecology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    White, D.C.; Palmer, R.J., Jr.; Zinn, M.; Smith, C.A.; Burkhalter, R.; Macnaughton, S.J.; Whitaker, K.W.; Kirkegaard, R.D.

    1998-08-15

    The biofilm mode of growth provides such significant advantages to the members of the consortium that most organisms in important habitats are found in biofilms. The study of factors that allow manipulation of biofilm microbes in the biofilm growth state requires that reproducible biofilms be generated. The most effective monitoring of biofilm formation, succession and desaturation is with on-line monitoring of microbial biofilms with flowcell for direct observation. The biofilm growth state incorporates a second important factor, the heterogeneity in distribution in time and space of the component members of the biofilm consortium. This heterogeneity is reflected not only in the cellular distribution but in the metabolic activity within a population of cells. Activity and cellular distribution can be mapped in four dimensions with confocal microscopy, and function can be ascertained by genetically manipulated reporter functions for specific genes or by vital stains. The methodology for understanding the microbial ecology of biofilms is now much more readily available and the capacity to manipulate biofilms is becoming an important feature of biotechnology.

  13. Methods for understanding microbial community structures and functions in microbial fuel cells: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhi, Wei; Ge, Zheng; He, Zhen; Zhang, Husen

    2014-11-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) employ microorganisms to recover electric energy from organic matter. However, fundamental knowledge of electrochemically active bacteria is still required to maximize MFCs power output for practical applications. This review presents microbiological and electrochemical techniques to help researchers choose the appropriate methods for the MFCs study. Pre-genomic and genomic techniques such as 16S rRNA based phylogeny and metagenomics have provided important information in the structure and genetic potential of electrode-colonizing microbial communities. Post-genomic techniques such as metatranscriptomics allow functional characterizations of electrode biofilm communities by quantifying gene expression levels. Isotope-assisted phylogenetic analysis can further link taxonomic information to microbial metabolisms. A combination of electrochemical, phylogenetic, metagenomic, and post-metagenomic techniques offers opportunities to a better understanding of the extracellular electron transfer process, which in turn can lead to process optimization for power output.

  14. Single gene-based distinction of individual microbial genomes from a mixed population of microbial cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manu Valtteri Tamminen

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Recent progress in environmental microbiology has revealed vast populations of microbes in any given habitat that cannot be detected by conventional culturing strategies. The use of sensitive genetic detection methods such as CARD-FISH and in situ PCR have been limited by the cell wall permeabilization requirement that cannot be performed similarly on all cell types without lysing some and leaving some unpermeabilized. Furthermore, the detection of low copy targets such as genes present in single copies in the microbial genomes, has remained problematic. We describe an emulsion-based procedure to trap individual microbial cells into picoliter-volume polyacrylamide droplets that provide a rigid support for genetic material and therefore allow complete degradation of cellular material to expose the individual genomes. The polyacrylamide droplets are subsequently converted into picoliter-scale reactors for genome amplification. The amplified genomes are labelled based on the presence of a target gene and differentiated from those that do not contain the gene by flow cytometry. Using the Escherichia coli strains XL1 and MC1061, which differ with respect to the presence (XL1 or absence (MC1061 of a single copy of a tetracycline resistance gene per genome, we demonstrate that XL1 genomes present at 0.1% of MC1061 genomes can be differentiated using this method. Using a spiked sediment microbial sample, we demonstrate that the method is applicable to highly complex environmental microbial communities as a target gene-based screen for individual microbes. The method provides a novel tool for enumerating functional cell populations in complex microbial communities. We envision that the method could be optimized for fluorescence-activated cell sorting to enrich genetic material of interest from complex environmental samples.

  15. 转基因作物对土壤微生物群落的影响及主要研究策略%Advances on the Effects of Genetically Modified Crops on Soil Microbial Community and Main Countermeasures of Their Approaches

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    杨永华

    2011-01-01

    Soil ecosystem is the important carrier of the agricultural ecosystem security and agriculturally sustainable development, and is the basis for human survival. The rapid development of genetic engineering and introduction of genetically modified crops (GMCs) have provided large economic benefits, but have also raised concerns over the potential impacts of these crops on environment. Among these environmental concerns, the unpredicted and complex impacts that GMCs might have on soil ecosystem, especially on its microbial community structure and function, have been recently increasingly studied, which has become one of the hot research directions in soil biosafety area. This review briefly summarizes the impacts of GMCs on microbial community in recent years, in which the advances on the effects of planted GMCs on rhizosphere microbial community diversity,both biological and technical approaches for the diversity research, and the countermeasures for assessing the risk of GMCs on rhizospheric microbes are highlighted and discussed.%土壤生态系统是农业生态系统安全和农业可持续发展的重要载体,也是人类赖以生存的基础.随着基因工程技术的应用和转基因作物大量种植,在带来重大经济效益的同时,也可能会引发一定的生态风险,包括会对农田土壤生态系统尤其是微生物群落结构和功能产生难以预测的复杂影响.目前这些研究方向已成为土壤生物安全的研究热点.本文简要分析了近年来转基因作物对土壤微生物群落的影响,着重介绍了转基因作物种植影响根际土壤微生物群落多样性的研究进展、土壤微生物群落多样性的研究方法及其评估研究的主要策略等.

  16. Inferring Microbial Fitness Landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-02-25

    experiments on evolving microbial populations. Although these experiments have produced examples of remarkable phenomena – e.g. the emergence of mutator...what specific mutations, avian influenza viruses will adapt to novel human hosts; or how readily infectious bacteria will escape antibiotics or the...infer from data the determinants of microbial evolution with sufficient resolution that we can quantify 1. REPORT DATE (DD-MM-YYYY) 4. TITLE AND

  17. Ocean microbial metagenomics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerkhof, Lee J.; Goodman, Robert M.

    2009-09-01

    Technology for accessing the genomic DNA of microorganisms, directly from environmental samples without prior cultivation, has opened new vistas to understanding microbial diversity and functions. Especially as applied to soils and the oceans, environments on Earth where microbial diversity is vast, metagenomics and its emergent approaches have the power to transform rapidly our understanding of environmental microbiology. Here we explore select recent applications of the metagenomic suite to ocean microbiology.

  18. Microbial Forensics: A Scientific Assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Keim, Paul

    2003-02-17

    Microorganisms have been used as weapons in criminal acts, most recently highlighted by the terrorist attack using anthrax in the fall of 2001. Although such ''biocrimes'' are few compared with other crimes, these acts raise questions about the ability to provide forensic evidence for criminal prosecution that can be used to identify the source of the microorganisms used as a weapon and, more importantly, the perpetrator of the crime. Microbiologists traditionally investigate the sources of microorganisms in epidemiological investigations, but rarely have been asked to assist in criminal investigations. A colloquium was convened by the American Academy of Microbiology in Burlington, Vermont, on June 7-9, 2002, in which 25 interdisciplinary, expert scientists representing evolutionary microbiology, ecology, genomics, genetics, bioinformatics, forensics, chemistry, and clinical microbiology, deliberated on issues in microbial forensics. The colloquium's purpose was to consider issues relating to microbial forensics, which included a detailed identification of a microorganism used in a bioattack and analysis of such a microorganism and related materials to identify its forensically meaningful source--the perpetrators of the bioattack. The colloquium examined the application of microbial forensics to assist in resolving biocrimes with a focus on what research and education are needed to facilitate the use of microbial forensics in criminal investigations and the subsequent prosecution of biocrimes, including acts of bioterrorism. First responders must consider forensic issues, such as proper collection of samples to allow for optimal laboratory testing, along with maintaining a chain of custody that will support eventual prosecution. Because a biocrime may not be immediately apparent, a linkage must be made between routine diagnosis, epidemiological investigation, and criminal investigation. There is a need for establishing standard operating

  19. New Genetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Home > Science Education > The New Genetics The New Genetics Living Laboratories Classroom Poster Order a Free Copy ... Piece to a Century-Old Evolutionary Puzzle Computing Genetics Model Organisms RNA Interference The New Genetics is ...

  20. Stability of soil microbial structure and activity depends on microbial diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tardy, Vincent; Mathieu, Olivier; Lévêque, Jean; Terrat, Sébastien; Chabbi, Abad; Lemanceau, Philippe; Ranjard, Lionel; Maron, Pierre-Alain

    2014-04-01

    Despite the central role of microbes in soil processes, empirical evidence concerning the effect of their diversity on soil stability remains controversial. Here, we addressed the ecological insurance hypothesis by examining the stability of microbial communities along a gradient of soil microbial diversity in response to mercury pollution and heat stress. Diversity was manipulated by dilution extinction approach. Structural and functional stabilities of microbial communities were assessed from patterns of genetic structure and soil respiration after the stress. Dilution led to the establishment of a consistent diversity gradient, as revealed by 454 sequencing of ribosomal genes. Diversity stability was enhanced in species-rich communities whatever the stress whereas functional stability was improved with increasing diversity after heat stress, but not after mercury pollution. This discrepancy implies that the relevance of ecological insurance for soil microbial communities might depend on the type of stress. Our results also suggest that the significance of microbial diversity for soil functional stability might increase with available soil resources. This could have strong repercussions in the current 'global changes' context because it suggests that the combined increased frequencies of extreme climatic events, nutrient loading and biotic exploitation may amplify the functional consequences of diversity decrease.

  1. The microbial genomics of arsenic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andres, Jérémy; Bertin, Philippe N

    2016-03-01

    Arsenic, which is a major contaminant of many aquatic ecosystems worldwide, is responsible for serious public health issues. However, life has evolved various strategies for coping with this toxic element. In particular, prokaryotic organisms have developed processes enabling them to resist and metabolize this chemical. Studies based on genome sequencing and transcriptome, proteome and metabolome profiling have greatly improved our knowledge of prokaryotes' metabolic potential and functioning in contaminated environments. The increasing number of genomes available and the development of descriptive and comparative approaches have made it possible not only to identify several genetic determinants of the arsenic metabolism, but also to elucidate their phylogenetic distribution and their modes of regulation. In addition, studies using functional genomic tools have established the pleiotropic character of prokaryotes' responses to arsenic, which can be either common to several species or species-specific. These approaches also provide promising means of deciphering the functioning of microbial communities including uncultured organisms, the genetic transfers involved and the possible occurrence of metabolic interactions as well as the evolution of arsenic resistance and metabolism.

  2. Genetics Home Reference: STING-associated vasculopathy with onset in infancy

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... a site of injury or disease to fight microbial invaders and help with tissue repair. Excessive inflammation ... my family? What is the prognosis of a genetic condition? Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center Frequency ...

  3. Spotsizer: High-throughput quantitative analysis of microbial growth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeffares, Daniel C.; Arzhaeva, Yulia; Bähler, Jürg

    2017-01-01

    Microbial colony growth can serve as a useful readout in assays for studying complex genetic interactions or the effects of chemical compounds. Although computational tools for acquiring quantitative measurements of microbial colonies have been developed, their utility can be compromised by inflexible input image requirements, non-trivial installation procedures, or complicated operation. Here, we present the Spotsizer software tool for automated colony size measurements in images of robotically arrayed microbial colonies. Spotsizer features a convenient graphical user interface (GUI), has both single-image and batch-processing capabilities, and works with multiple input image formats and different colony grid types. We demonstrate how Spotsizer can be used for high-throughput quantitative analysis of fission yeast growth. The user-friendly Spotsizer tool provides rapid, accurate, and robust quantitative analyses of microbial growth in a high-throughput format. Spotsizer is freely available at https://data.csiro.au/dap/landingpage?pid=csiro:15330 under a proprietary CSIRO license. PMID:27712582

  4. Buried Treasure: Evolutionary Perspectives on Microbial Iron Piracy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barber, Matthew F; Elde, Nels C

    2015-11-01

    Host-pathogen interactions provide valuable systems for the study of evolutionary genetics and natural selection. The sequestration of essential iron has emerged as a crucial innate defense system termed nutritional immunity, leading pathogens to evolve mechanisms of 'iron piracy' to scavenge this metal from host proteins. This battle for iron carries numerous consequences not only for host-pathogen evolution but also microbial community interactions. Here we highlight recent and potential future areas of investigation on the evolutionary implications of microbial iron piracy in relation to molecular arms races, host range, competition, and virulence. Applying evolutionary genetic approaches to the study of microbial iron acquisition could also provide new inroads for understanding and combating infectious disease.

  5. 2007 Microbial Population Biology (July 22-26, 2007)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Anthony M. Dean

    2008-04-01

    Microbial Population Biology covers a diverse range of cutting edge issues in the microbial sciences and beyond. Firmly founded in evolutionary biology and with a strongly integrative approach, past meetings have covered topics ranging from the dynamics and genetics of adaptation to the evolution of mutation rate, community ecology, evolutionary genomics, altruism, and epidemiology. This meeting is never dull: some of the most significant and contentious issues in biology have been thrashed out here. We anticipate the 2007 meeting being no exception. The final form of the 2007 meeting is yet to be decided, but the following topics are likely to be included: evolutionary emergence of infectious disease and antibiotic resistance, genetic architecture and implications for the evolution of microbial populations, ageing in bacteria, biogeography, evolution of symbioses, the role of microbes in ecosystem function, and ecological genomics.

  6. Sequencing intractable DNA to close microbial genomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hurt, Richard A; Brown, Steven D; Podar, Mircea; Palumbo, Anthony V; Elias, Dwayne A

    2012-01-01

    Advancement in high throughput DNA sequencing technologies has supported a rapid proliferation of microbial genome sequencing projects, providing the genetic blueprint for in-depth studies. Oftentimes, difficult to sequence regions in microbial genomes are ruled "intractable" resulting in a growing number of genomes with sequence gaps deposited in databases. A procedure was developed to sequence such problematic regions in the "non-contiguous finished" Desulfovibrio desulfuricans ND132 genome (6 intractable gaps) and the Desulfovibrio africanus genome (1 intractable gap). The polynucleotides surrounding each gap formed GC rich secondary structures making the regions refractory to amplification and sequencing. Strand-displacing DNA polymerases used in concert with a novel ramped PCR extension cycle supported amplification and closure of all gap regions in both genomes. The developed procedures support accurate gene annotation, and provide a step-wise method that reduces the effort required for genome finishing.

  7. Sequencing intractable DNA to close microbial genomes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard A Hurt

    Full Text Available Advancement in high throughput DNA sequencing technologies has supported a rapid proliferation of microbial genome sequencing projects, providing the genetic blueprint for in-depth studies. Oftentimes, difficult to sequence regions in microbial genomes are ruled "intractable" resulting in a growing number of genomes with sequence gaps deposited in databases. A procedure was developed to sequence such problematic regions in the "non-contiguous finished" Desulfovibrio desulfuricans ND132 genome (6 intractable gaps and the Desulfovibrio africanus genome (1 intractable gap. The polynucleotides surrounding each gap formed GC rich secondary structures making the regions refractory to amplification and sequencing. Strand-displacing DNA polymerases used in concert with a novel ramped PCR extension cycle supported amplification and closure of all gap regions in both genomes. The developed procedures support accurate gene annotation, and provide a step-wise method that reduces the effort required for genome finishing.

  8. Microbial recycling of glycerol to biodiesel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Liu; Zhu, Zhi; Wang, Weihua; Lu, Xuefeng

    2013-12-01

    The sustainable supply of lipids is the bottleneck for current biodiesel production. Here microbial recycling of glycerol, byproduct of biodiesel production to biodiesel in engineered Escherichia coli strains was reported. The KC3 strain with capability of producing fatty acid ethyl esters (FAEEs) from glucose was used as a starting strain to optimize fermentation conditions when using glycerol as sole carbon source. The YL15 strain overexpressing double copies of atfA gene displayed 1.7-fold increase of FAEE productivity compared to the KC3 strain. The titer of FAEE in YL15 strain reached to 813 mg L(-1) in minimum medium using glycerol as sole carbon source under optimized fermentation conditions. The titer of glycerol-based FAEE production can be significantly increased by both genetic modifications and fermentation optimization. Microbial recycling of glycerol to biodiesel expands carbon sources for biodiesel production.

  9. Cell-based detection of microbial biomaterial contaminations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roch, Toralf; Ma, Nan; Kratz, Karl; Lendlein, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    A major challenge in biomaterial synthesis and functionalization is the prevention of microbial contaminations such as endotoxins (lipopolysaccharides (LPS)). In addition to LPS, which are exclusively expressed by Gram negative bacteria, also other microbial products derived from fungi or Gram positive bacteria can be found as contaminations in research laboratories. Typically, the Limulus amebocyte lysate (LAL)-test is used to determine the endotoxin levels of medical devices. However, this test fails to detect material-bound LPS and other microbial contaminations and, as demonstrated in this study, detects LPS from various bacterial species with different sensitivities.In this work, a cell-based assay using genetically engineered RAW macrophages, which detect not only soluble but also material-bound microbial contaminations is introduced.The sensitivity of this cell-line towards different LPS species and different heat-inactivated microbes was investigated. As proof of principle a soft hydrophobic poly(n-butyl acrylate) network (cPnBA), which may due to adhesive properties strongly bind microbes, was deliberately contaminated with heat-inactivated bacteria. While the LAL-test failed to detect the microbial contamination, the cell-based assay clearly detected material-bound microbial contaminations. Our data demonstrate that a cell-based detection system should routinely be used as supplement to the LAL-test to determine microbial contaminations of biomaterials.

  10. Towards evolution-guided microbial engineering - tools development and applications

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Genee, Hans Jasper

    By enabling sustainable manufacturing of medicines, materials andchemicals, biotechnology and the use of genetically engineeredmicroorganisms promises solutions to many of todays global challenges.Key to the development of new microbial processes is the design,construction, and testing of new high...

  11. Expansion of Microbial Forensics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmedes, Sarah E; Sajantila, Antti; Budowle, Bruce

    2016-08-01

    Microbial forensics has been defined as the discipline of applying scientific methods to the analysis of evidence related to bioterrorism, biocrimes, hoaxes, or the accidental release of a biological agent or toxin for attribution purposes. Over the past 15 years, technology, particularly massively parallel sequencing, and bioinformatics advances now allow the characterization of microorganisms for a variety of human forensic applications, such as human identification, body fluid characterization, postmortem interval estimation, and biocrimes involving tracking of infectious agents. Thus, microbial forensics should be more broadly described as the discipline of applying scientific methods to the analysis of microbial evidence in criminal and civil cases for investigative purposes. Copyright © 2016, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  12. Global Microbial Identifier

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wielinga, Peter; Hendriksen, Rene S.; Aarestrup, Frank Møller

    2017-01-01

    microbial identifier (GMI) initiative, aims to build a database of whole microbial genome sequencing data linked to relevant metadata, which can be used to identify microorganisms, their communities and the diseases they cause. It would be a platform for storing whole genome sequencing (WGS) data......) will likely also enable a much better understanding of the pathogenesis of the infection and the molecular basis of the host response to infection. But the full potential of these advances will only transpire if the data in this area become transferable and thereby comparable, preferably in open......-source systems. There is therefore an obvious need to develop a global system of whole microbial genome databases to aggregate, share, mine and use microbiological genomic data, to address global public health and clinical challenges, and most importantly to identify and diagnose infectious diseases. The global...

  13. The Microbial Olympics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Youle, Merry; Rohwer, Forest; Stacy, Apollo; Whiteley, Marvin; Steel, Bradley C.; Delalez, Nicolas J.; Nord, Ashley L.; Berry, Richard M.; Armitage, Judith P.; Kamoun, Sophien; Hogenhout, Saskia; Diggle, Stephen P.; Gurney, James; Pollitt, Eric J. G.; Boetius, Antje; Cary, S. Craig

    2014-01-01

    Every four years, the Olympic Games plays host to competitors who have built on their natural talent by training for many years to become the best in their chosen discipline. Similar spirit and endeavour can be found throughout the microbial world, in which every day is a competition to survive and thrive. Microorganisms are trained through evolution to become the fittest and the best adapted to a particular environmental niche or lifestyle, and to innovate when the ‘rules of the game’ are changed by alterations to their natural habitats. In this Essay, we honour the best competitors in the microbial world by inviting them to take part in the inaugural Microbial Olympics. PMID:22796885

  14. The use of microarrays in microbial ecology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Andersen, G.L.; He, Z.; DeSantis, T.Z.; Brodie, E.L.; Zhou, J.

    2009-09-15

    Microarrays have proven to be a useful and high-throughput method to provide targeted DNA sequence information for up to many thousands of specific genetic regions in a single test. A microarray consists of multiple DNA oligonucleotide probes that, under high stringency conditions, hybridize only to specific complementary nucleic acid sequences (targets). A fluorescent signal indicates the presence and, in many cases, the abundance of genetic regions of interest. In this chapter we will look at how microarrays are used in microbial ecology, especially with the recent increase in microbial community DNA sequence data. Of particular interest to microbial ecologists, phylogenetic microarrays are used for the analysis of phylotypes in a community and functional gene arrays are used for the analysis of functional genes, and, by inference, phylotypes in environmental samples. A phylogenetic microarray that has been developed by the Andersen laboratory, the PhyloChip, will be discussed as an example of a microarray that targets the known diversity within the 16S rRNA gene to determine microbial community composition. Using multiple, confirmatory probes to increase the confidence of detection and a mismatch probe for every perfect match probe to minimize the effect of cross-hybridization by non-target regions, the PhyloChip is able to simultaneously identify any of thousands of taxa present in an environmental sample. The PhyloChip is shown to reveal greater diversity within a community than rRNA gene sequencing due to the placement of the entire gene product on the microarray compared with the analysis of up to thousands of individual molecules by traditional sequencing methods. A functional gene array that has been developed by the Zhou laboratory, the GeoChip, will be discussed as an example of a microarray that dynamically identifies functional activities of multiple members within a community. The recent version of GeoChip contains more than 24,000 50mer

  15. Microbial Life in Soil - Linking Biophysical Models with Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Or, Dani; Tecon, Robin; Ebrahimi, Ali; Kleyer, Hannah; Ilie, Olga; Wang, Gang

    2015-04-01

    Microbial life in soil occurs within fragmented aquatic habitats formed in complex pore spaces where motility is restricted to short hydration windows (e.g., following rainfall). The limited range of self-dispersion and physical confinement promote spatial association among trophically interdepended microbial species. Competition and preferences for different nutrient resources and byproducts and their diffusion require high level of spatial organization to sustain the functioning of multispecies communities. We report mechanistic modeling studies of competing multispecies microbial communities grown on hydrated surfaces and within artificial soil aggregates (represented by 3-D pore network). Results show how trophic dependencies and cell-level interactions within patchy diffusion fields promote spatial self-organization of motile microbial cells. The spontaneously forming patterns of segregated, yet coexisting species were robust to spatial heterogeneities and to temporal perturbations (hydration dynamics), and respond primarily to the type of trophic dependencies. Such spatially self-organized consortia may reflect ecological templates that optimize substrate utilization and could form the basic architecture for more permanent surface-attached microbial colonies. Hydration dynamics affect structure and spatial arrangement of aerobic and anaerobic microbial communities and their biogeochemical functions. Experiments with well-characterized artificial soil microbial assemblies grown on porous surfaces provide access to community dynamics during wetting and drying cycles detected through genetic fingerprinting. Experiments for visual observations of spatial associations of tagged bacterial species with known trophic dependencies on model porous surfaces are underway. Biophysical modeling provide a means for predicting hydration-mediated critical separation distances for activation of spatial self-organization. The study provides new modeling and observational tools

  16. Genetic algorithms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Lui; Bayer, Steven E.

    1991-01-01

    Genetic algorithms are mathematical, highly parallel, adaptive search procedures (i.e., problem solving methods) based loosely on the processes of natural genetics and Darwinian survival of the fittest. Basic genetic algorithms concepts are introduced, genetic algorithm applications are introduced, and results are presented from a project to develop a software tool that will enable the widespread use of genetic algorithm technology.

  17. Genetic Mapping

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Fact Sheets Fact Sheets En Español: Mapeo Genético Genetic Mapping What is genetic mapping? How do researchers create ... genetic map? What are genetic markers? What is genetic mapping? Among the main goals of the Human Genome ...

  18. Molecular ecology of microbial mats

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    H. Bolhuis; M.S. Cretoiu; L.J. Stal

    2014-01-01

    Phototrophic microbial mats are ideal model systems for ecological and evolutionary analysis of highly diverse microbial communities. Microbial mats are small-scale, nearly closed, and self-sustaining benthic ecosystems that comprise the major element cycles, trophic levels, and food webs. The steep

  19. Microbial ecology of biotechnological processes

    OpenAIRE

    Fraraccio, Serena

    2015-01-01

    The investigation of phylogenetic diversity and functionality of complex microbial communities in relation to changes in the environmental conditions represents a major challenge of microbial ecology research. Nowadays, particular attention is paid to microbial communities occurring at environmental sites contaminated by recalcitrant and toxic organic compounds. Extended research has evidenced that such communities evolve some metabolic abilities leading to the partial degradation or complete...

  20. Microbial Weathering of Olivine

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKay, D. S.; Longazo, T. G.; Wentworth, S. J.; Southam, G.

    2002-01-01

    Controlled microbial weathering of olivine experiments displays a unique style of nanoetching caused by biofilm attachment to mineral surfaces. We are investigating whether the morphology of biotic nanoetching can be used as a biosignature. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  1. Diazotrophic microbial mats

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Severin, I.; Stal, L.J.; Seckbach, J.; Oren, A.

    2010-01-01

    Microbial mats have been the focus of scientific research for a few decades. These small-scale ecosystems are examples of versatile benthic communities of microorganisms, usually dominated by phototrophic bacteria (e.g., Krumbein et al., 1977; Jørgensen et al., 1983). They develop as vertically stra

  2. Microbial Energy Conversion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Buckley, Merry [American Society for Microbiology (ASM), Washington, DC (United States); Wall, Judy D. [Univ. of Missouri, Columbia, MO (United States)

    2006-10-01

    The American Academy of Microbiology convened a colloquium March 10-12, 2006, in San Francisco, California, to discuss the production of energy fuels by microbial conversions. The status of research into various microbial energy technologies, the advantages and disadvantages of each of these approaches, research needs in the field, and education and training issues were examined, with the goal of identifying routes for producing biofuels that would both decrease the need for fossil fuels and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Currently, the choices for providing energy are limited. Policy makers and the research community must begin to pursue a broader array of potential energy technologies. A diverse energy portfolio that includes an assortment of microbial energy choices will allow communities and consumers to select the best energy solution for their own particular needs. Funding agencies and governments alike need to prepare for future energy needs by investing both in the microbial energy technologies that work today and in the untested technologies that will serve the world’s needs tomorrow. More mature bioprocesses, such as ethanol production from starchy materials and methane from waste digestors, will find applications in the short term. However, innovative techniques for liquid fuel or biohydrogen production are among the longer term possibilities that should also be vigorously explored, starting now. Microorganisms can help meet human energy needs in any of a number of ways. In their most obvious role in energy conversion, microorganisms can generate fuels, including ethanol, hydrogen, methane, lipids, and butanol, which can be burned to produce energy. Alternatively, bacteria can be put to use in microbial fuel cells, where they carry out the direct conversion of biomass into electricity. Microorganisms may also be used some day to make oil and natural gas technologies more efficient by sequestering carbon or by assisting in the recovery of oil and

  3. SEAGRASS RHIZOSPHERE MICROBIAL COMMUNITIES

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devereux, Richard. 2005. Seagrass Rhizosphere Microbial Communities. In: Interactions Between Macro- and Microorganisms in Marine Sediments. E. Kristense, J.E. Kostka and R.H. Haese, Editors. American Geophysical Union, Washington, DC. p199-216. (ERL,GB 1213). Seagrasses ...

  4. Microbial keratitis in children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunimoto, D Y; Sharma, S; Reddy, M K; Gopinathan, U; Jyothi, J; Miller, D; Rao, G N

    1998-02-01

    Microbial keratitis is a major cause of corneal blindness worldwide. This problem is particularly relevant to children, because most of their visual life is ahead of them, and they are uniquely at risk for irreversible ocular deficits, such as those resulting from amblyopia. The objective of this study was to determine the etiologic agents and predisposing factors in childhood infectious keratitis and to examine the outcome of treatment in terms of structure and visual acuity. The study design was a retrospective cases series. The authors studied 113 eyes in 107 children 16 years of age and younger who were treated for (nonviral) microbial keratitis at the LV Prasad Eye Institute in Hyderabad, India, during the 4.5-year period between February 1, 1991, and June 30, 1995. The patients who met the following criteria were included in the study: (1) corneal stromal infiltrate was present on slit-lamp examination; and (2) a corneal scraping was taken at the time of examination for suspected microbial keratitis. Etiologic micro-organisms, predisposing factors, treatment method, structural treatment outcome, and visual acuity treatment outcome of the infectious keratitis episode were measured. The principal predisposing factors identified in this study were trauma (21.2%), ocular disease (17.7%), systemic disease (15.9%), and prior penetrating keratoplasty in the same eye (8.8%). Vitamin A deficiency was an important factor within the category of severe systemic disease, and contact lens wear was not involved in any of the cases. A total of 85 organisms were isolated in cultures of corneal scrapings from 64 (56.6%) of the 113 cases. Staphylococcus species (43.7%), Streptococcus pneumoniae (18.8%), and fungi (17.2%) were the most common isolates. Eighteen eyes (15.9%) required surgery, and 28 (36.4%) of the 77 patients on whom visual acuity was assessed at last follow-up achieved an unaided visual acuity of 20/60 or better at last follow-up. This work represents the

  5. Microbial community degradation of widely used quaternary ammonium disinfectants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oh, Seungdae; Kurt, Zohre; Tsementzi, Despina; Weigand, Michael R; Kim, Minjae; Hatt, Janet K; Tandukar, Madan; Pavlostathis, Spyros G; Spain, Jim C; Konstantinidis, Konstantinos T

    2014-10-01

    Benzalkonium chlorides (BACs) are disinfectants widely used in a variety of clinical and environmental settings to prevent microbial infections, and they are frequently detected in nontarget environments, such as aquatic and engineered biological systems, even at toxic levels. Therefore, microbial degradation of BACs has important ramifications for alleviating disinfectant toxicity in nontarget environments as well as compromising disinfectant efficacy in target environments. However, how natural microbial communities respond to BAC exposure and what genes underlie BAC biodegradation remain elusive. Our previous metagenomic analysis of a river sediment microbial community revealed that BAC exposure selected for a low-diversity community, dominated by several members of the Pseudomonas genus that quickly degraded BACs. To elucidate the genetic determinants of BAC degradation, we conducted time-series metatranscriptomic analysis of this microbial community during a complete feeding cycle with BACs as the sole carbon and energy source under aerobic conditions. Metatranscriptomic profiles revealed a candidate gene for BAC dealkylation, the first step in BAC biodegradation that results in a product 500 times less toxic. Subsequent biochemical assays and isolate characterization verified that the putative amine oxidase gene product was functionally capable of initiating BAC degradation. Our analysis also revealed cooperative interactions among community members to alleviate BAC toxicity, such as the further degradation of BAC dealkylation by-products by organisms not encoding amine oxidase. Collectively, our results advance the understanding of BAC aerobic biodegradation and provide genetic biomarkers to assess the critical first step of this process in nontarget environments.

  6. Genetic Counseling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Genetic counseling provides information and support to people who have, or may be at risk for, genetic disorders. A ... meets with you to discuss genetic risks. The counseling may be for yourself or a family member. ...

  7. Hydrodynamics of microbial filter feeding

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Lasse Tor; Asadzadeh, Seyed Saeed; Dölger, Julia

    2017-01-01

    Microbial filter feeders are an important group of grazers, significant to the microbial loop, aquatic food webs, and biogeochemical cycling. Our understanding of microbial filter feeding is poor, and, importantly, it is unknown what force microbial filter feeders must generate to process adequat...... predict how optimum filter mesh size increases with cell size in microbial filter feeders, a prediction that accords very well with observations. We expect our results to be of significance for small-scale biophysics and trait-based ecological modeling....

  8. Microbial life in a fjord: metagenomic analysis of a microbial mat in Chilean patagonia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan A Ugalde

    Full Text Available The current study describes the taxonomic and functional composition of metagenomic sequences obtained from a filamentous microbial mat isolated from the Comau fjord, located in the northernmost part of the Chilean Patagonia. The taxonomic composition of the microbial community showed a high proportion of members of the Gammaproteobacteria, including a high number of sequences that were recruited to the genomes of Moritella marina MP-1 and Colwelliapsycherythraea 34H, suggesting the presence of populations related to these two psychrophilic bacterial species. Functional analysis of the community indicated a high proportion of genes coding for the transport and metabolism of amino acids, as well as in energy production. Among the energy production functions, we found protein-coding genes for sulfate and nitrate reduction, both processes associated with Gammaproteobacteria-related sequences. This report provides the first examination of the taxonomic composition and genetic diversity associated with these conspicuous microbial mat communities and provides a framework for future microbial studies in the Comau fjord.

  9. Microbial Life in a Fjord: Metagenomic Analysis of a Microbial Mat in Chilean Patagonia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ugalde, Juan A.; Gallardo, Maria J.; Belmar, Camila; Muñoz, Práxedes; Ruiz-Tagle, Nathaly; Ferrada-Fuentes, Sandra; Espinoza, Carola; Allen, Eric E.; Gallardo, Victor A.

    2013-01-01

    The current study describes the taxonomic and functional composition of metagenomic sequences obtained from a filamentous microbial mat isolated from the Comau fjord, located in the northernmost part of the Chilean Patagonia. The taxonomic composition of the microbial community showed a high proportion of members of the Gammaproteobacteria, including a high number of sequences that were recruited to the genomes of Moritella marina MP-1 and Colwelliapsycherythraea 34H, suggesting the presence of populations related to these two psychrophilic bacterial species. Functional analysis of the community indicated a high proportion of genes coding for the transport and metabolism of amino acids, as well as in energy production. Among the energy production functions, we found protein-coding genes for sulfate and nitrate reduction, both processes associated with Gammaproteobacteria-related sequences. This report provides the first examination of the taxonomic composition and genetic diversity associated with these conspicuous microbial mat communities and provides a framework for future microbial studies in the Comau fjord. PMID:24015199

  10. Potential microbial contamination during sampling of permafrost soil assessed by tracers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bang-Andreasen, Toke; Schostag, Morten; Priemé, Anders; Elberling, Bo; Jacobsen, Carsten S

    2017-02-23

    Drilling and handling of permanently frozen soil cores without microbial contamination is of concern because contamination e.g. from the active layer above may lead to incorrect interpretation of results in experiments investigating potential and actual microbial activity in these low microbial biomass environments. Here, we present an example of how microbial contamination from active layer soil affected analysis of the potentially active microbial community in permafrost soil. We also present the development and use of two tracers: (1) fluorescent plastic microspheres and (2) Pseudomonas putida genetically tagged with Green Fluorescent Protein production to mimic potential microbial contamination of two permafrost cores. A protocol with special emphasis on avoiding microbial contamination was developed and employed to examine how far microbial contamination can penetrate into permafrost cores. The quantity of tracer elements decreased with depth into the permafrost cores, but the tracers were detected as far as 17 mm from the surface of the cores. The results emphasize that caution should be taken to avoid microbial contamination of permafrost cores and that the application of tracers represents a useful tool to assess penetration of potential microbial contamination into permafrost cores.

  11. Potential microbial contamination during sampling of permafrost soil assessed by tracers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bang-Andreasen, Toke; Schostag, Morten; Priemé, Anders; Elberling, Bo; Jacobsen, Carsten S.

    2017-01-01

    Drilling and handling of permanently frozen soil cores without microbial contamination is of concern because contamination e.g. from the active layer above may lead to incorrect interpretation of results in experiments investigating potential and actual microbial activity in these low microbial biomass environments. Here, we present an example of how microbial contamination from active layer soil affected analysis of the potentially active microbial community in permafrost soil. We also present the development and use of two tracers: (1) fluorescent plastic microspheres and (2) Pseudomonas putida genetically tagged with Green Fluorescent Protein production to mimic potential microbial contamination of two permafrost cores. A protocol with special emphasis on avoiding microbial contamination was developed and employed to examine how far microbial contamination can penetrate into permafrost cores. The quantity of tracer elements decreased with depth into the permafrost cores, but the tracers were detected as far as 17 mm from the surface of the cores. The results emphasize that caution should be taken to avoid microbial contamination of permafrost cores and that the application of tracers represents a useful tool to assess penetration of potential microbial contamination into permafrost cores. PMID:28230151

  12. Potential microbial contamination during sampling of permafrost soil assessed by tracers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bang-Andreasen, Toke; Schostag, Morten; Priemé, Anders; Elberling, Bo; Jacobsen, Carsten S.

    2017-02-01

    Drilling and handling of permanently frozen soil cores without microbial contamination is of concern because contamination e.g. from the active layer above may lead to incorrect interpretation of results in experiments investigating potential and actual microbial activity in these low microbial biomass environments. Here, we present an example of how microbial contamination from active layer soil affected analysis of the potentially active microbial community in permafrost soil. We also present the development and use of two tracers: (1) fluorescent plastic microspheres and (2) Pseudomonas putida genetically tagged with Green Fluorescent Protein production to mimic potential microbial contamination of two permafrost cores. A protocol with special emphasis on avoiding microbial contamination was developed and employed to examine how far microbial contamination can penetrate into permafrost cores. The quantity of tracer elements decreased with depth into the permafrost cores, but the tracers were detected as far as 17 mm from the surface of the cores. The results emphasize that caution should be taken to avoid microbial contamination of permafrost cores and that the application of tracers represents a useful tool to assess penetration of potential microbial contamination into permafrost cores.

  13. Engineering microbial electrocatalysis for chemical and fuel production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenbaum, Miriam A; Henrich, Alexander W

    2014-10-01

    In many biotechnological areas, metabolic engineering and synthetic biology have become core technologies for biocatalyst development. Microbial electrocatalysis for biochemical and fuel production is still in its infancy and reactions rates and the product spectrum are currently very low. Therefore, molecular engineering strategies will be crucial for the advancement and realization of many new bioproduction routes using electroactive microorganisms. The complex and unresolved biochemistry and physiology of extracellular electron transfer and the lack of molecular tools for these new non-model hosts for genetic engineering constitute the major challenges for this effort. This review is providing an insight into the current status, challenges and promising approaches of pathway engineering for microbial electrocatalysis.

  14. Microbial ecology and adaptation in cystic fibrosis airways

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yang, Lei; Jelsbak, Lars; Molin, Søren

    2011-01-01

    Chronic infections in the respiratory tracts of cystic fibrosis (CF) patients are important to investigate, both from medical and from fundamental ecological points of view. Cystic fibrosis respiratory tracts can be described as natural environments harbouring persisting microbial communities...... constitute the selective forces that drive the evolution of the microbes after they migrate from the outer environment to human airways. Pseudomonas aeruginosa adapts to the new environment through genetic changes and exhibits a special lifestyle in chronic CF airways. Understanding the persistent...... colonization of microbial pathogens in CF patients in the context of ecology and evolution will expand our knowledge of the pathogenesis of chronic infections and improve therapeutic strategies....

  15. Microbial Risk Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ott, C. M.; Mena, K. D.; Nickerson, C.A.; Pierson, D. L.

    2009-01-01

    Historically, microbiological spaceflight requirements have been established in a subjective manner based upon expert opinion of both environmental and clinical monitoring results and the incidence of disease. The limited amount of data, especially from long-duration missions, has created very conservative requirements based primarily on the concentration of microorganisms. Periodic reevaluations of new data from later missions have allowed some relaxation of these stringent requirements. However, the requirements remain very conservative and subjective in nature, and the risk of crew illness due to infectious microorganisms is not well defined. The use of modeling techniques for microbial risk has been applied in the food and potable water industries and has exceptional potential for spaceflight applications. From a productivity standpoint, this type of modeling can (1) decrease unnecessary costs and resource usage and (2) prevent inadequate or inappropriate data for health assessment. In addition, a quantitative model has several advantages for risk management and communication. By identifying the variable components of the model and the knowledge associated with each component, this type of modeling can: (1) Systematically identify and close knowledge gaps, (2) Systematically identify acceptable and unacceptable risks, (3) Improve communication with stakeholders as to the reasons for resource use, and (4) Facilitate external scientific approval of the NASA requirements. The modeling of microbial risk involves the evaluation of several key factors including hazard identification, crew exposure assessment, dose-response assessment, and risk characterization. Many of these factors are similar to conditions found on Earth; however, the spaceflight environment is very specialized as the inhabitants live in a small, semi-closed environment that is often dependent on regenerative life support systems. To further complicate modeling efforts, microbial dose

  16. Degradation of microbial polyesters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tokiwa, Yutaka; Calabia, Buenaventurada P

    2004-08-01

    Microbial polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs), one of the largest groups of thermoplastic polyesters are receiving much attention as biodegradable substitutes for non-degradable plastics. Poly(D-3-hydroxybutyrate) (PHB) is the most ubiquitous and most intensively studied PHA. Microorganisms degrading these polyesters are widely distributed in various environments. Although various PHB-degrading microorganisms and PHB depolymerases have been studied and characterized, there are still many groups of microorganisms and enzymes with varying properties awaiting various applications. Distributions of PHB-degrading microorganisms, factors affecting the biodegradability of PHB, and microbial and enzymatic degradation of PHB are discussed in this review. We also propose an application of a new isolated, thermophilic PHB-degrading microorganism, Streptomyces strain MG, for producing pure monomers of PHA and useful chemicals, including D-3-hydroxycarboxylic acids such as D-3-hydroxybutyric acid, by enzymatic degradation of PHB.

  17. Microbial field pilot study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Knapp, R.M.; McInerney, M.J.; Menzie, D.E.; Chisholm, J.L.

    1992-03-01

    The objective of this project is to perform a microbial enhanced oil recovery field pilot in the Southeast Vassar Vertz Sand Unit (SEVVSU) in Payne County, Oklahoma. Indigenous, anaerobic, nitrate reducing bacteria will be stimulated to selectively plug flow paths which have been referentially swept by a prior waterflood. This will force future flood water to invade bypassed regions of the reservoir and increase sweep efficiency. This report covers progress made during the second year, January 1, 1990 to December 31, 1990, of the Microbial Field Pilot Study project. Information on reservoir ecology, surface facilities design, operation of the unit, core experiments, modeling of microbial processes, and reservoir characterization and simulation are presented in the report. To better understand the ecology of the target reservoir, additional analyses of the fluids which support bacteriological growth and the microbiology of the reservoir were performed. The results of the produced and injected water analysis show increasing sulfide concentrations with respect to time. In March of 1990 Mesa Limited Partnership sold their interest in the SEVVSU to Sullivan and Company. In April, Sullivan and Company assumed operation of the field. The facilities for the field operation of the pilot were refined and implementation was begun. Core flood experiments conducted during the last year were used to help define possible mechanisms involved in microbial enhanced oil recovery. The experiments were performed at SEVVSU temperature using fluids and inoculum from the unit. The model described in last year's report was further validated using results from a core flood experiment. The model was able to simulate the results of one of the core flood experiments with good quality.

  18. Microbial field pilot study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Knapp, R.M.; McInerney, M.J.; Menzie, D.E.; Chisholm, J.L.

    1992-03-01

    The objective of this project is to perform a microbial enhanced oil recovery field pilot in the Southeast Vassar Vertz Sand Unit (SEVVSU) in Payne County, Oklahoma. Indigenous, anaerobic, nitrate reducing bacteria will be stimulated to selectively plug flow paths which have been referentially swept by a prior waterflood. This will force future flood water to invade bypassed regions of the reservoir and increase sweep efficiency. This report covers progress made during the second year, January 1, 1990 to December 31, 1990, of the Microbial Field Pilot Study project. Information on reservoir ecology, surface facilities design, operation of the unit, core experiments, modeling of microbial processes, and reservoir characterization and simulation are presented in the report. To better understand the ecology of the target reservoir, additional analyses of the fluids which support bacteriological growth and the microbiology of the reservoir were performed. The results of the produced and injected water analysis show increasing sulfide concentrations with respect to time. In March of 1990 Mesa Limited Partnership sold their interest in the SEVVSU to Sullivan and Company. In April, Sullivan and Company assumed operation of the field. The facilities for the field operation of the pilot were refined and implementation was begun. Core flood experiments conducted during the last year were used to help define possible mechanisms involved in microbial enhanced oil recovery. The experiments were performed at SEVVSU temperature using fluids and inoculum from the unit. The model described in last year`s report was further validated using results from a core flood experiment. The model was able to simulate the results of one of the core flood experiments with good quality.

  19. Forum of Microbial Threats

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-06-01

    and ―disease‖. Studies on leafcutter ants have revealed a complex web of symbiotic interactions, among ants, bacteria , and fungi that are associated...strains of bacteria and viruses are treatable with only a single drug, and some no longer have effective treatments. The disease burden from multi...microbes have played in driving adaptation and evolution of organisms. To date, most microbiome or microbial ecology studies have focused on bacteria

  20. Microbial desulfurization of coal

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Danzet, C.; Buonfiglio, V.; Polidoro, M.; Valenti, P. (Rome Univ. La Sapienza (Italy). Ist. di Microbiologia)

    This paper reviews the biochemical and economics aspects of coal desulfurization processes involving the use of thermophile microorganisms such as sulfolobus, currently believed to be the the only type of microorganism capable of degrading both inorganic (pyrite-containing) and organic sulfur compounds. Comments are also made on the feasibility of the development of an in-lab, microbial based method for the transformation of the lignin component, obtained in the processing, by anaerobic fermentation, of lignocellulosic biomass, into humic acid.

  1. Toward a microbial Neolithic revolution in buildings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thaler, David S

    2016-03-29

    The Neolithic revolution--the transition of our species from hunter and gatherer to cultivator--began approximately 14,000 years ago and is essentially complete for macroscopic food. Humans remain largely pre-Neolithic in our relationship with microbes but starting with the gut we continue our hundred-year project of approaching the ability to assess and cultivate benign microbiomes in our bodies. Buildings are analogous to the body and it is time to ask what it means to cultivate benign microbiomes in our built environment. A critical distinction is that we have not found, or invented, niches in buildings where healthful microbial metabolism occurs and/or could be cultivated. Key events affecting the health and healthfulness of buildings such as a hurricane leading to a flood or a burst pipe occur only rarely and unpredictably. The cause may be transient but the effects can be long lasting and, e.g., for moisture damage, cumulative. Non-invasive "building tomography" could find moisture and "sentinel microbes" could record the integral of transient growth. "Seed" microbes are metabolically inert cells able to grow when conditions allow. All microbes and their residue present actinic molecules including immunological epitopes (molecular shapes). The fascinating hygiene and microbial biodiversity hypotheses propose that a healthy immune system requires exposure to a set of microbial epitopes that is rich in diversity. A particular conjecture is that measures of the richness of diversity derived from microbiome next-generation sequencing (NGS) can be mechanistically coupled to--rather than merely correlated with some measures of--human health. These hypotheses and conjectures inspire workers and funders but an alternative is also consequent to the first Neolithic revolution: That the genetic uniformity of contemporary foods may also decrease human exposure to molecular biodiversity in a heath-relevant manner. Understanding the consequences--including the unintended

  2. Microbial reduction of iodate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Councell, T.B.; Landa, E.R.; Lovley, D.R.

    1997-01-01

    The different oxidation species of iodine have markedly different sorption properties. Hence, changes in iodine redox states can greatly affect the mobility of iodine in the environment. Although a major microbial role has been suggested in the past to account for these redox changes, little has been done to elucidate the responsible microorganisms or the mechanisms involved. In the work presented here, direct microbial reduction of iodate was demonstrated with anaerobic cell suspensions of the sulfate reducing bacterium Desulfovibrio desulfuricans which reduced 96% of an initial 100 ??M iodate to iodide at pH 7 in 30 mM NaHCO3 buffer, whereas anaerobic cell suspensions of the dissimilatory Fe(III)-reducing bacterium Shewanella putrefaciens were unable to reduce iodate in 30 mM NaHCO3 buffer (pH 7). Both D. desulfuricans and S. putrefaciens were able to reduce iodate at pH 7 in 10 mM HEPES buffer. Both soluble ferrous iron and sulfide, as well as iron monosulfide (FeS) were shown to abiologically reduce iodate to iodide. These results indicate that ferric iron and/or sulfate reducing bacteria are capable of mediating both direct, enzymatic, as well as abiotic reduction of iodate in natural anaerobic environments. These microbially mediated reactions may be important factors in the fate and transport of 129I in natural systems.

  3. Advances in microbial amylases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pandey, A; Nigam, P; Soccol, C R; Soccol, V T; Singh, D; Mohan, R

    2000-04-01

    This review makes a comprehensive survey of microbial amylases, i.e. alpha-amylase, beta-amylase and glucoamylase. Amylases are among the most important enzymes and are of great significance in present-day biotechnology. Although they can be derived from several sources, such as plants, animals and micro-organisms, the enzymes from microbial sources generally meet industrial demands. Microbial amylases could be potentially useful in the pharmaceutical and fine-chemical industries if enzymes with suitable properties could be prepared. With the advent of new frontiers in biotechnology, the spectrum of amylase application has widened in many other fields, such as clinical, medicinal and analytical chemistries, as well as their widespread application in starch saccharification and in the textile, food, brewing and distilling industries. In this review, after a brief description of the sources of amylases, we discuss the molecular biology of amylases, describing structures, cloning, sequences, and protoplast fusion and mutagenesis. This is followed by sections on their production and finally the properties of various amylases.

  4. Microbial biosurfactants and biodegradation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, Owen P

    2010-01-01

    Microbial biosurfactants are amphipathic molecules having typical molecular weights of 500-1500 Da, made up of peptides, saccharides or lipids or their combinations. In biodegradation processes they mediate solubilisation, mobilization and/or accession of hydrophobic substrates to microbes. They may be located on the cell surface or be secreted into the extracellular medium and they facilitate uptake of hydrophobic molecules through direct cellular contact with hydrophobic solids or droplets or through micellarisation. They are also involved in cell physiological processes such as biofilm formation and detachment, and in diverse biofilm associated processes such as wastewater treatment and microbial pathogenesis. The protection of contaminants in biosurfactants micelles may also inhibit uptake of contaminants by microbes. In bioremediation processes biosurfactants may facilitate release of contaminants from soil, but soils also tend to bind surfactants strongly which makes their role in contaminant desorption more complex. A greater understanding of the underlying roles played by biosurfactants in microbial physiology and in biodegradative processes is developing through advances in cell and molecular biology.

  5. A Statistical Framework for Microbial Source Attribution

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Velsko, S P; Allen, J E; Cunningham, C T

    2009-04-28

    This report presents a general approach to inferring transmission and source relationships among microbial isolates from their genetic sequences. The outbreak transmission graph (also called the transmission tree or transmission network) is the fundamental structure which determines the statistical distributions relevant to source attribution. The nodes of this graph are infected individuals or aggregated sub-populations of individuals in which transmitted bacteria or viruses undergo clonal expansion, leading to a genetically heterogeneous population. Each edge of the graph represents a transmission event in which one or a small number of bacteria or virions infects another node thus increasing the size of the transmission network. Recombination and re-assortment events originate in nodes which are common to two distinct networks. In order to calculate the probability that one node was infected by another, given the observed genetic sequences of microbial isolates sampled from them, we require two fundamental probability distributions. The first is the probability of obtaining the observed mutational differences between two isolates given that they are separated by M steps in a transmission network. The second is the probability that two nodes sampled randomly from an outbreak transmission network are separated by M transmission events. We show how these distributions can be obtained from the genetic sequences of isolates obtained by sampling from past outbreaks combined with data from contact tracing studies. Realistic examples are drawn from the SARS outbreak of 2003, the FMDV outbreak in Great Britain in 2001, and HIV transmission cases. The likelihood estimators derived in this report, and the underlying probability distribution functions required to calculate them possess certain compelling general properties in the context of microbial forensics. These include the ability to quantify the significance of a sequence 'match' or &apos

  6. The microbial signature of drinking waters: myth or reality?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harmand, J; Paulou, L; Desmoutiers, J; Garrelly, L; Dabert, P; Godon, J J

    2006-01-01

    This paper presents a new software developed for analyzing single strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP) electrophoresis patterns delivered by the genetic analyzer ABI310 (Applied Biosystems). SSCP is a molecular typing technique based on the PCR amplification of microbial 16S rDNA and used for the monitoring of complex microbial ecosystems dynamics. The software--a home-made MATLAB toolbox called MODIMECO--developed for the analysis of SSCP patterns is presented. MODIMECO includes a number of basic signal processing abilities as well as largely used statistical tools such as the well known principal component analysis. The use of the SSCP for assessing the hypothesis of the existence of a microbial signature of drinking waters illustrates the typical advantages of using such software tools. Results are discussed and conclusions drawn.

  7. Microbial Cell Dynamics Lab (MCDL)

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Microbial Cell Dynamics Laboratory at PNNL enables scientists to study the molecular details of microbes under relevant environmental conditions. The MCDL seeks...

  8. Microbial field pilot study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Knapp, R.M.; McInerney, M.J.; Menzie, D.E.; Coates, J.D.; Chisholm, J.L.

    1993-05-01

    A multi-well microbially enhanced oil recovery field pilot has been performed in the Southeast Vassar Vertz Sand Unit in Payne County, Oklahoma. The primary emphasis of the experiment was preferential plugging of high permeability zones for the purpose of improving waterflood sweep efficiency. Studies were performed to determine reservoir chemistry, ecology, and indigenous bacteria populations. Growth experiments were used to select a nutrient system compatible with the reservoir that encouraged growth of a group of indigenous nitrate-using bacteria and inhibit growth of sulfate-reducing bacteria. A specific field pilot area behind an active line drive waterflood was selected. Surface facilities were designed and installed. Injection protocols of bulk nutrient materials were prepared to facilitate uniform distribution of nutrients within the pilot area. By the end of December, 1991, 82.5 tons (75.0 tonnes) of nutrients had been injected in the field. A tracer test identified significant heterogeneity in the SEVVSU and made it necessary to monitor additional production wells in the field. The tracer tests and changes in production behavior indicate the additional production wells monitored during the field trial were also affected. Eighty two and one half barrels (13.1 m[sup 3]) of tertiary oil have been recovered. Microbial activity has increased CO[sub 2] content as indicated by increased alkalinity. A temporary rise in sulfide concentration was experienced. These indicate an active microbial community was generated in the field by the nutrient injection. Pilot area interwell pressure interference test results showed that significant permeability reduction occurred. The interwell permeabilities in the pilot area between the injector and the three pilot production wells were made more uniform which indicates a successful preferential plugging enhanced oil recovery project.

  9. Microbial bebop: creating music from complex dynamics in microbial ecology.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Larsen

    Full Text Available In order for society to make effective policy decisions on complex and far-reaching subjects, such as appropriate responses to global climate change, scientists must effectively communicate complex results to the non-scientifically specialized public. However, there are few ways however to transform highly complicated scientific data into formats that are engaging to the general community. Taking inspiration from patterns observed in nature and from some of the principles of jazz bebop improvisation, we have generated Microbial Bebop, a method by which microbial environmental data are transformed into music. Microbial Bebop uses meter, pitch, duration, and harmony to highlight the relationships between multiple data types in complex biological datasets. We use a comprehensive microbial ecology, time course dataset collected at the L4 marine monitoring station in the Western English Channel as an example of microbial ecological data that can be transformed into music. Four compositions were generated (www.bio.anl.gov/MicrobialBebop.htm. from L4 Station data using Microbial Bebop. Each composition, though deriving from the same dataset, is created to highlight different relationships between environmental conditions and microbial community structure. The approach presented here can be applied to a wide variety of complex biological datasets.

  10. Microbial bebop: creating music from complex dynamics in microbial ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, Peter; Gilbert, Jack

    2013-01-01

    In order for society to make effective policy decisions on complex and far-reaching subjects, such as appropriate responses to global climate change, scientists must effectively communicate complex results to the non-scientifically specialized public. However, there are few ways however to transform highly complicated scientific data into formats that are engaging to the general community. Taking inspiration from patterns observed in nature and from some of the principles of jazz bebop improvisation, we have generated Microbial Bebop, a method by which microbial environmental data are transformed into music. Microbial Bebop uses meter, pitch, duration, and harmony to highlight the relationships between multiple data types in complex biological datasets. We use a comprehensive microbial ecology, time course dataset collected at the L4 marine monitoring station in the Western English Channel as an example of microbial ecological data that can be transformed into music. Four compositions were generated (www.bio.anl.gov/MicrobialBebop.htm.) from L4 Station data using Microbial Bebop. Each composition, though deriving from the same dataset, is created to highlight different relationships between environmental conditions and microbial community structure. The approach presented here can be applied to a wide variety of complex biological datasets.

  11. Genetic engineering of sulfur-degrading Sulfolobus

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ho, N.W.Y.

    1991-01-01

    The objectives of the proposed research is to first establish a plasmid-mediated genetic transformation system for the sulfur degrading Sulfolobus, and then to clone and overexpress the genes encoding the organic-sulfur-degrading enzymes from Sulfolobus- as well as from other microorganisms, to develop a Sulfolobus-based microbial process for the removal of both organic and inorganic sulfur from coal.

  12. The effect of host genetics on the gut microbiome

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bonder, Marc Jan; Kurilshchikov, Aleksandr; Tigchelaar-Feenstra, Ettje; Mujagic, Zlatan; Imhann, Floris; Vila, Arnau Vich; Deelen, Patrick; Vatanen, Tommi; Schirmer, Melanie; Smeekens, Sanne P; Zhernakova, Daria V; Jankipersadsing, Soesma A; Jaeger, Martin; Oosting, Marije; Cenit, Maria Carmen; Masclee, Ad A M; Swertz, Morris A; Li, Yang; Kumar, Vinod; Joosten, Leo; Harmsen, Hermie; Weersma, Rinse K; Franke, Lude; Hofker, Marten H; Xavier, Ramnik J; Jonkers, Daisy; Netea, Mihai G; Wijmenga, Cisca; Fu, Jingyuan; Zhernakova, Alexandra

    2016-01-01

    The gut microbiome is affected by multiple factors, including genetics. In this study, we assessed the influence of host genetics on microbial species, pathways and gene ontology categories, on the basis of metagenomic sequencing in 1,514 subjects. In a genome-wide analysis, we identified

  13. Genetic Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... This can cause a medical condition called a genetic disorder. You can inherit a gene mutation from ... during your lifetime. There are three types of genetic disorders: Single-gene disorders, where a mutation affects ...

  14. Utilization of Alternate Chirality Enantiomers in Microbial Communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pikuta, Elena V.; Hoover, Richard B.

    2010-01-01

    Our previous study of chirality led to interesting findings for some anaerobic extremophiles: the ability to metabolize substrates with alternate chirality enantiomers of amino acids and sugars. We have subsequently found that not just separate microbial species or strains but entire microbial communities have this ability. The functional division within a microbial community on proteo- and sugarlytic links was also reflected in a microbial diet with L-sugars and D-amino acids. Several questions are addressed in this paper. Why and when was this feature developed in a microbial world? Was it a secondary de novo adaptation in a bacterial world? Or is this a piece of genetic information that has been left in modern genomes as an atavism? Is it limited exclusively to prokaryotes, or does this ability also occur in eukaryotes? In this article, we have used a broader approach to study this phenomenon using anaerobic extremophilic strains from our laboratory collection. A series of experiments were performed on physiologically different groups of extremophilic anaerobes (pure and enrichment cultures). The following characteristics were studied: 1) the ability to grow on alternate chirality enantiomers -- L-sugars and D- amino acids; 2) Growth-inhibitory effect of alternate chirality enantiomers; 3) Stickland reaction with alternate chirality amino acids. The results of this research are presented in this paper.

  15. Microbial ecology and biogeochemistry of continental Antarctic soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Don A Cowan

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The Antarctica Dry Valleys are regarded as the coldest hyperarid desert system on Earth. While a wide variety of environmental stressors including very low minimum temperatures, frequent freeze-thaw cycles and low water availability impose severe limitations to life, suitable niches for abundant microbial colonization exist. Antarctic desert soils contain much higher levels of microbial diversity than previously thought. Edaphic niches, including cryptic and refuge habitats, microbial mats and permafrost soils all harbour microbial communities which drive key biogeochemical cycling processes. For example, lithobionts (hypoliths and endoliths possess a genetic capacity for nitrogen and carbon cycling, polymer degradation and other system processes. Nitrogen fixation rates of hypoliths, as assessed through acetylene reduction assays, suggest that these communities are a significant input source for nitrogen into these oligotrophic soils. Here we review aspects of microbial diversity in Antarctic soils with an emphasis on functionality and capacity. We assess current knowledge regarding adaptations to Antarctic soil environments and highlight the current threats to Antarctic desert soil communities.

  16. Genetic modification and genetic determinism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Resnik, David B; Vorhaus, Daniel B

    2006-06-26

    In this article we examine four objections to the genetic modification of human beings: the freedom argument, the giftedness argument, the authenticity argument, and the uniqueness argument. We then demonstrate that each of these arguments against genetic modification assumes a strong version of genetic determinism. Since these strong deterministic assumptions are false, the arguments against genetic modification, which assume and depend upon these assumptions, are therefore unsound. Serious discussion of the morality of genetic modification, and the development of sound science policy, should be driven by arguments that address the actual consequences of genetic modification for individuals and society, not by ones propped up by false or misleading biological assumptions.

  17. A human gut microbial gene catalogue established by metagenomic sequencing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    dos Santos, Marcelo Bertalan Quintanilha; Sicheritz-Pontén, Thomas; Nielsen, Henrik Bjørn;

    2010-01-01

    To understand the impact of gut microbes on human health and well-being it is crucial to assess their genetic potential. Here we describe the Illumina-based metagenomic sequencing, assembly and characterization of 3.3 million non-redundant microbial genes, derived from 576.7 gigabases of sequence...... gut metagenome and the minimal gut bacterial genome in terms of functions present in all individuals and most bacteria, respectively....

  18. Microbial electrosynthesis: understanding and strengthening microbe-electrode interactions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tremblay, Pier-Luc; Höglund, Daniel; Ammam, Fariza;

    2014-01-01

    Powering microbes with electrical energy to produce valuable chemicals such as biofuels has recently gained traction as a biosustainable production strategy for the reduction of our dependence to oil. Microbial electrosynthesis (MES) is one of the few bioelectrochemical approaches developed......, and a general lack of knowledge about electron transfer mechanisms have been the main obstacles to MES commercialization todate. Developing genetic systems for known electroautotrophs, screening for better MES chassis organisms and superior electrochemical hardware, establishing alternative MES processes...

  19. Microbial response to triepthylphosphate

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hazen, T.C.; Santo Domingo, J.W.; Berry, C.J.

    1997-05-01

    The effect of triethylphosphate (TEP) on the activity of a landfill aquifer microbial community was evaluated using standard techniques and in situ hybridizations with phylogenetic probes. Benzene was used as an external carbon source to monitor degradation of an aromatic compound in TEP amended microcosms. Microscopical and viable counts were higher in TEP containing microcosms when compared to unamended controls. A significant increase in metabolic activity was also observed for TEP amended samples as determined by the number of cells hybridizing to an eubacterial probe. In addition, the number of beta and gamma Proteobacteria increased from undetectable levels prior to the study to 15-29% of the total bacteria in microcosms containing TEP and benzene. In these microcosms, nearly 40% of the benzene was degraded during the incubation period compared to less than 5% in unamended microcosms. While TEP has previously been used as an alternate phosphate source in the bioremediation of chlorinated aliphatics, this study shows that it can also stimulate the microbial degradation of aromatics in phosphate limited aquifers.

  20. Microbial genomic taxonomy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Cristiane C; Chimetto, Luciane; Edwards, Robert A; Swings, Jean; Stackebrandt, Erko; Thompson, Fabiano L

    2013-12-23

    A need for a genomic species definition is emerging from several independent studies worldwide. In this commentary paper, we discuss recent studies on the genomic taxonomy of diverse microbial groups and a unified species definition based on genomics. Accordingly, strains from the same microbial species share >95% Average Amino Acid Identity (AAI) and Average Nucleotide Identity (ANI), >95% identity based on multiple alignment genes, genomic signature, and > 70% in silico Genome-to-Genome Hybridization similarity (GGDH). Species of the same genus will form monophyletic groups on the basis of 16S rRNA gene sequences, Multilocus Sequence Analysis (MLSA) and supertree analysis. In addition to the established requirements for species descriptions, we propose that new taxa descriptions should also include at least a draft genome sequence of the type strain in order to obtain a clear outlook on the genomic landscape of the novel microbe. The application of the new genomic species definition put forward here will allow researchers to use genome sequences to define simultaneously coherent phenotypic and genomic groups.

  1. Imaging Genetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munoz, Karen E.; Hyde, Luke W.; Hariri, Ahmad R.

    2009-01-01

    Imaging genetics is an experimental strategy that integrates molecular genetics and neuroimaging technology to examine biological mechanisms that mediate differences in behavior and the risks for psychiatric disorder. The basic principles in imaging genetics and the development of the field are discussed.

  2. Genetic principles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abuelo, D

    1987-01-01

    The author discusses the basic principles of genetics, including the classification of genetic disorders and a consideration of the rules and mechanisms of inheritance. The most common pitfalls in clinical genetic diagnosis are described, with emphasis on the problem of the negative or misleading family history.

  3. Imaging Genetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munoz, Karen E.; Hyde, Luke W.; Hariri, Ahmad R.

    2009-01-01

    Imaging genetics is an experimental strategy that integrates molecular genetics and neuroimaging technology to examine biological mechanisms that mediate differences in behavior and the risks for psychiatric disorder. The basic principles in imaging genetics and the development of the field are discussed.

  4. Microbial ecology of phototrophic biofilms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roeselers, G.

    2007-01-01

    Biofilms are layered structures of microbial cells and an extracellular matrix of polymeric substances, associated with surfaces and interfaces. Biofilms trap nutrients for growth of the enclosed microbial community and help prevent detachment of cells from surfaces in flowing systems. Phototrophic

  5. Microbial interactions during carrion decomposition

    Science.gov (United States)

    This addresses the microbial ecology of carrion decomposition in the age of metagenomics. It describes what is known about the microbial communities on carrion, including a brief synopsis about the communities on other organic matter sources. It provides a description of studies using state-of-the...

  6. Web Resources for Microbial Data

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Qinglan Sun; Li Liu; Linhuan Wu; Wei Li; Quanhe Liu; Jianyuan Zhang; Di Liug; Juncai Ma

    2015-01-01

    There are multitudes of web resources that are quite useful for the microbial scientific research community. Here, we provide a brief introduction on some of the most notable microbial web resources and an evaluation of them based upon our own user experience.

  7. Microbial ecology of phototrophic biofilms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roeselers, G.

    2007-01-01

    Biofilms are layered structures of microbial cells and an extracellular matrix of polymeric substances, associated with surfaces and interfaces. Biofilms trap nutrients for growth of the enclosed microbial community and help prevent detachment of cells from surfaces in flowing systems. Phototrophic

  8. Microbial conversions of nitrogenous heterocycles

    OpenAIRE

    Parshikov, Igor A

    2015-01-01

    The monography describes examples of the application of microbial technologies for obtaining of derivatives from a series of nitrogen heterocycles (saturated nitrogen heterocycles, azaarenes and quinolones). It is proposed alternative ways for synthesize substances that are difficult to obtain by the methods of organic chemistry. Microbial technologies of synthesis of organic compounds may find out a practical application in the production of various drugs.

  9. A microbial world within us

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zoetendal, E.G.; Vaughan, E.E.; Vos, de W.M.

    2006-01-01

    The microbial world within us includes a vast array of gastrointestinal (GI) tract communities that play an important role in health and disease. Significant progress has been made in recent years in describing the intestinal microbial composition based on the application of 16S ribosomal RNA (rRNA)

  10. Unravelling core microbial metabolisms in the hypersaline microbial mats of Shark Bay using high-throughput metagenomics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ruvindy, Rendy; White III, Richard Allen; Neilan, Brett Anthony; Burns, Brendan Paul

    2015-05-29

    Modern microbial mats are potential analogues of some of Earth’s earliest ecosystems. Excellent examples can be found in Shark Bay, Australia, with mats of various morphologies. To further our understanding of the functional genetic potential of these complex microbial ecosystems, we conducted for the first time shotgun metagenomic analyses. We assembled metagenomic nextgeneration sequencing data to classify the taxonomic and metabolic potential across diverse morphologies of marine mats in Shark Bay. The microbial community across taxonomic classifications using protein-coding and small subunit rRNA genes directly extracted from the metagenomes suggests that three phyla Proteobacteria, Cyanobacteria and Bacteriodetes dominate all marine mats. However, the microbial community structure between Shark Bay and Highbourne Cay (Bahamas) marine systems appears to be distinct from each other. The metabolic potential (based on SEED subsystem classifications) of the Shark Bay and Highbourne Cay microbial communities were also distinct. Shark Bay metagenomes have a metabolic pathway profile consisting of both heterotrophic and photosynthetic pathways, whereas Highbourne Cay appears to be dominated almost exclusively by photosynthetic pathways. Alternative non-rubisco-based carbon metabolism including reductive TCA cycle and 3-hydroxypropionate/4-hydroxybutyrate pathways is highly represented in Shark Bay metagenomes while not represented in Highbourne Cay microbial mats or any other mat forming ecosystems investigated to date. Potentially novel aspects of nitrogen cycling were also observed, as well as putative heavy metal cycling (arsenic, mercury, copper and cadmium). Finally, archaea are highly represented in Shark Bay and may have critical roles in overall ecosystem function in these modern microbial mats.

  11. Unravelling core microbial metabolisms in the hypersaline microbial mats of Shark Bay using high-throughput metagenomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruvindy, Rendy; White, Richard Allen; Neilan, Brett Anthony; Burns, Brendan Paul

    2016-01-01

    Modern microbial mats are potential analogues of some of Earth's earliest ecosystems. Excellent examples can be found in Shark Bay, Australia, with mats of various morphologies. To further our understanding of the functional genetic potential of these complex microbial ecosystems, we conducted for the first time shotgun metagenomic analyses. We assembled metagenomic next-generation sequencing data to classify the taxonomic and metabolic potential across diverse morphologies of marine mats in Shark Bay. The microbial community across taxonomic classifications using protein-coding and small subunit rRNA genes directly extracted from the metagenomes suggests that three phyla Proteobacteria, Cyanobacteria and Bacteriodetes dominate all marine mats. However, the microbial community structure between Shark Bay and Highbourne Cay (Bahamas) marine systems appears to be distinct from each other. The metabolic potential (based on SEED subsystem classifications) of the Shark Bay and Highbourne Cay microbial communities were also distinct. Shark Bay metagenomes have a metabolic pathway profile consisting of both heterotrophic and photosynthetic pathways, whereas Highbourne Cay appears to be dominated almost exclusively by photosynthetic pathways. Alternative non-rubisco-based carbon metabolism including reductive TCA cycle and 3-hydroxypropionate/4-hydroxybutyrate pathways is highly represented in Shark Bay metagenomes while not represented in Highbourne Cay microbial mats or any other mat forming ecosystems investigated to date. Potentially novel aspects of nitrogen cycling were also observed, as well as putative heavy metal cycling (arsenic, mercury, copper and cadmium). Finally, archaea are highly represented in Shark Bay and may have critical roles in overall ecosystem function in these modern microbial mats.

  12. Microbial colonization of normal skin: Direct visualization of 194 skin biopsies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jahns, Anika C; Alexeyev, Oleg A

    2016-04-01

    Recent genetic studies have suggested the presence of numerous microbial species on and in the skin. We characterised microbial colonization of a large collection of skin biopsies from 194 healthy subjects by fluorescence assay. Forty per cent of all biopsies did not show any evidence for microbial colonization. Propionibacterium acnes was the sole predominant bacterial species in both sebaceous and non-sebaceous areas. Non- P. acnes species were present in approximately 30% of all colonized samples. . Only hair follicles and stratum corneum were colonized. Understanding of cutaneous microbiota requires validation from a variety of approaches and techniques.

  13. Genetic modification and genetic determinism

    OpenAIRE

    Vorhaus Daniel B; Resnik David B

    2006-01-01

    Abstract In this article we examine four objections to the genetic modification of human beings: the freedom argument, the giftedness argument, the authenticity argument, and the uniqueness argument. We then demonstrate that each of these arguments against genetic modification assumes a strong version of genetic determinism. Since these strong deterministic assumptions are false, the arguments against genetic modification, which assume and depend upon these assumptions, are therefore unsound....

  14. Fourteenth-Sixteenth Microbial Genomics Conference-2006-2008

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Miller, Jeffrey H

    2011-04-18

    The concept of an annual meeting on the E. coli genome was formulated at the Banbury Center Conference on the Genome of E. coli in October, 1991. The first meeting was held on September 10-14, 1992 at the University of Wisconsin, and this was followed by a yearly series of meetings, and by an expansion to include The fourteenth meeting took place September 24-28, 2006 at Lake Arrowhead, CA, the fifteenth September 16-20, 2007 at the University of Maryland, College Park, MD, and the sixteenth September 14-18, 2008 at Lake Arrowhead. The full program for the 16th meeting is attached. There have been rapid and exciting advances in microbial genomics that now make possible comparing large data sets of sequences from a wide variety of microbial genomes, and from whole microbial communities. Examining the “microbiomes”, the living microbial communities in different host organisms opens up many possibilities for understanding the landscape presented to pathogenic microorganisms. For quite some time there has been a shifting emphasis from pure sequence data to trying to understand how to use that information to solve biological problems. Towards this end new technologies are being developed and improved. Using genetics, functional genomics, and proteomics has been the recent focus of many different laboratories. A key element is the integration of different aspects of microbiology, sequencing technology, analysis techniques, and bioinformatics. The goal of these conference is to provide a regular forum for these interactions to occur. While there have been a number of genome conferences, what distinguishes the Microbial Genomics Conference is its emphasis on bringing together biology and genetics with sequencing and bioinformatics. Also, this conference is the longest continuing meeting, now established as a major regular annual meeting. In addition to its coverage of microbial genomes and biodiversity, the meetings also highlight microbial communities and the use of

  15. Monitoring Microbially Influenced Corrosion

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hilbert, Lisbeth Rischel

    Abstract Microbially influenced corrosion (MIC) of carbon steel may occur in media with microbiological activity of especially sulphate-reducing bacteria (SRB). The applicability and reliability of a number of corrosion monitoring techniques for monitoring MIC has been evaluated in experiments...... and diffusional effects and unreliable corrosion rates, when biofilm and ferrous sulphide corrosion products cover the steel surface. Corrosion rates can be overestimated by a factor of 10 to 100 by electrochemical techniques. Weight loss coupons and ER are recommended as necessary basic monitoring techniques....... EIS might be used for detection of MIC as the appearance of very large capacitances can be attributed to the combined ferrous sulphide and biofilm formation. Capacitance correlates directly with sulphide concentration in sterile sulphide media. Keywords: Corrosion monitoring, carbon steel, MIC, SRB...

  16. New microbial growth factor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bok, S. H.; Casida, L. E., Jr.

    1977-01-01

    A screening procedure was used to isolate from soil a Penicillium sp., two bacterial isolates, and a Streptomyces sp. that produced a previously unknown microbial growth factor. This factor was an absolute growth requirement for three soil bacteria. The Penicillium sp. and one of the bacteria requiring the factor, an Arthrobacter sp., were selected for more extensive study concerning the production and characteristics of the growth factor. It did not seem to be related to the siderochromes. It was not present in soil extract, rumen fluid, or any other medium component tested. It appears to be a glycoprotein of high molecular weight and has high specific activity. When added to the diets for a meadow-vole mammalian test system, it caused an increased consumption of diet without a concurrent increase in rate of weight gain.

  17. Microbial Field Pilot Study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Knapp, R.M.; McInerney, M.J.; Menzie, D.E.; Chisholm, J.L.

    1990-11-01

    This report covers progress made during the first year of the Microbial Field Pilot Study project. Information on reservoir ecology and characterization, facility and treatment design, core experiments, bacterial mobility, and mathematical modeling are addressed. To facilitate an understanding of the ecology of the target reservoir analyses of the fluids which support bacteriological growth and the microbiology of the reservoir were performed. A preliminary design of facilities for the operation of the field pilot test was prepared. In addition, procedures for facilities installation and for injection treatments are described. The Southeast Vassar Vertz Sand Unit (SEVVSU), the site of the proposed field pilot study, is described physically, historically, and geologically. The fields current status is presented and the ongoing reservoir simulation is discussed. Core flood experiments conducted during the last year were used to help define possible mechanisms involved in microbial enhanced oil recovery. Two possible mechanisms, relative permeability effects and changes in the capillary number, are discussed and related to four Berea core experiments' results. The experiments were conducted at reservoir temperature using SEVVSU oil, brine, and bacteria. The movement and activity of bacteria in porous media were investigated by monitoring the growth of bacteria in sandpack cores under no flow conditions. The rate of bacteria advancement through the cores was determined. A mathematical model of the MEOR process has been developed. The model is a three phase, seven species, one dimensional model. Finite difference methods are used for solution. Advection terms in balance equations are represented with a third- order upwind differencing scheme to reduce numerical dispersion and oscillations. The model is applied to a batch fermentation example. 52 refs., 26 figs., 21 tabs.

  18. Genetic variants associated with Crohn's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michail S

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Sonia Michail,1 Gilberto Bultron,1 R William DePaolo2 1The University of Southern California, Children's Hospital of Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA, USA; 2Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA Abstract: Crohn's disease is an immune-related disorder characterized by inflammation of the gastrointestinal mucosa, which can occur in any area throughout the digestive tract. This life-long disease commonly presents with abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, and weight loss. While the exact etiology of this disease is largely unknown, it is thought to arise from an interaction between microbial, immunological, and environmental factors in a genetically susceptible host, whereby the immune system attacks the intestine as it cross reacts against gut microbial antigens. The study of genetic variants associated with Crohn's disease has shed light on our understanding of disease pathophysiology. A large number of genetic variants identified in Crohn's disease are related to genes targeting microbial recognition and bacterial wall sensing, the most common being NOD2/CARD15 gene. This review will discuss the recent advance in our knowledge of genetic variants of this disease and how they influence the disease course and prognosis. Keywords: Crohn's disease, genetics, autophagy

  19. The Ecology and Evolution of Microbial Competition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghoul, Melanie; Mitri, Sara

    2016-10-01

    Microbes are typically surrounded by different strains and species with whom they compete for scarce nutrients and limited space. Given such challenging living conditions, microbes have evolved many phenotypes with which they can outcompete and displace their neighbours: secretions to harvest resources, loss of costly genes whose products can be obtained from others, stabbing and poisoning neighbouring cells, or colonising spaces while preventing others from doing so. These competitive phenotypes appear to be common, although evidence suggests that, over time, competition dies down locally, often leading to stable coexistence of genetically distinct lineages. Nevertheless, the selective forces acting on competition and the resulting evolutionary fates of the different players depend on ecological conditions in a way that is not yet well understood. Here, we highlight open questions and theoretical predictions of the long-term dynamics of competition that remain to be tested. Establishing a clearer understanding of microbial competition will allow us to better predict the behaviour of microbes, and to control and manipulate microbial communities for industrial, environmental, and medical purposes.

  20. Microbial Induction of Immunity, Inflammation And Cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen John O'Keefe

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available The human microbiota presents a highly active metabolic that influences the state of health of our gastrointestinal tracts as well as our susceptibility to disease. Although much of our initial microbiota is adopted from our mothers, its final composition and diversity is determined by environmental factors. Westernization has significantly altered our microbial function. Extensive experimental and clinical evidence indicates that the westernized diet, rich in animal products and low in complex carbohydrates, plus the overuse of antibiotics and underuse of breastfeeding, leads to a heightened inflammatory potential of the microbiota. Chronic inflammation leads to the expression of certain diseases in genetically predisposed individuals. Antibiotics and a ‘clean’ environment, termed the ‘hygiene hypothesis’, has been linked to the rise in allergy and inflammatory bowel disease, due to impaired beneficial bacterial exposure and education of the gut immune system, which comprises the largest immune organ within the body. The elevated risk of colon cancer is associated with the suppression of microbial fermentation and butyrate production, as butyrate provides fuel for the mucosa and is anti-inflammatory and anti-proliferative. This article will summarize the work to date highlighting the complicated and dynamic relationship between the gut microbiota and immunity, inflammation and carcinogenesis.

  1. Microbial Aspects of Anaerobic BTEX Degradation

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2002-01-01

    Combined with conventional methods, developments in both geochemical (delineation of redox processes) and molecular microbial methods (analysis of 16S rDNA genes and functional genes) have allowed us to study in details microorganisms and genes involved in the anaerobic degradation of benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylene (BTEX) under specific redox conditions. This review summarizes recent research in this field. The potential for anaerobic BTEX degradation is widely spread. Specific groups of microorganisms appear to be involved in degradation under different redox conditions. Members of the Azoarcus/Thauera cluster perform BTEX degradation under denitrifying conditions, Geobacteraceae under Fe (III) reducing conditions and Desulfobacteriaceae under sulfate reducing conditions. The information so far obtained on biochemistry and molecular genetics of BTEX degradation indicates that each BTEX compound is funneled into the central benzyol-CoA pathway by a different peripheral pathway. The peripheral pathways of per BTEX compound show similarities among different physiological groups of microorganisms. We also describe how knowledge obtained on the microbial aspects of BTEX degradation can be used to enhance and monitor anaerobic BTEX degradation.

  2. Microbial oceanography: paradigms, processes and promise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karl, David M

    2007-10-01

    Life on Earth most likely originated as microorganisms in the sea. Over the past approximately 3.5 billion years, microorganisms have shaped and defined Earth's biosphere and have created conditions that have allowed the evolution of macroorganisms and complex biological communities, including human societies. Recent advances in technology have highlighted the vast and previously unknown genetic information that is contained in extant marine microorganisms, from new protein families to novel metabolic processes. Now there is a unique opportunity, using recent advances in molecular ecology, metagenomics, remote sensing of microorganisms and ecological modelling, to achieve a comprehensive understanding of marine microorganisms and their susceptibility to environmental variability and climate change. Contemporary microbial oceanography is truly a sea of opportunity and excitement.

  3. [Microbial biocenoss in chronic purulent otitis media].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beloglazova, N N; Vasil'eva, L I; Bragina, L E; Kiselev, V V; Naboka, Iu L

    2010-01-01

    The objective of the present work was to study microflora in the middle ear of 100 patients aged from 30 to 70 years presenting with chronic purulent otitis media (CPOM) by microbiological and genetic (PCR) methods. An important role of persistence factors, pathogenicity, and microbial antibiotic resistance in the development of CPOM was demonstrated. The frequency of occurrence of herpes and papilloma viruses was estimated. The most common form of the mixed infection was two-component virobacterial associations (46.2%). Three-component associations of viruses with bacteria (Chlamydiae or Mycoplasmas) formed less frequently (34.6%). In 19.2% of the cases, yeast-like fungi of the genus Candida were identified in these associations.

  4. Natural computation meta-heuristics for the in silico optimization of microbial strains

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rocha, Miguel; Maia, Paulo; Mendes, Rui;

    2008-01-01

    Background: One of the greatest challenges in Metabolic Engineering is to develop quantitative models and algorithms to identify a set of genetic manipulations that will result in a microbial strain with a desirable metabolic phenotype which typically means having a high yield/productivity. This ......Background: One of the greatest challenges in Metabolic Engineering is to develop quantitative models and algorithms to identify a set of genetic manipulations that will result in a microbial strain with a desirable metabolic phenotype which typically means having a high yield...

  5. The microbial ecology of permafrost

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jansson, Janet; Tas, Neslihan

    2014-01-01

    Permafrost constitutes a major portion of the terrestrial cryosphere of the Earth and is a unique ecological niche for cold-adapted microorganisms. There is a relatively high microbial diversity in permafrost, although there is some variation in community composition across different permafrost......-gas emissions. This Review describes new data on the microbial ecology of permafrost and provides a platform for understanding microbial life strategies in frozen soil as well as the impact of climate change on permafrost microorganisms and their functional roles....

  6. Genetic barcodes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Weier, Heinz -Ulrich G

    2015-08-04

    Herein are described multicolor FISH probe sets termed "genetic barcodes" targeting several cancer or disease-related loci to assess gene rearrangements and copy number changes in tumor cells. Two, three or more different fluorophores are used to detect the genetic barcode sections thus permitting unique labeling and multilocus analysis in individual cell nuclei. Gene specific barcodes can be generated and combined to provide both numerical and structural genetic information for these and other pertinent disease associated genes.

  7. Microbial amylolytic enzymes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vihinen, M; Mäntsälä, P

    1989-01-01

    Starch-degrading, amylolytic enzymes are widely distributed among microbes. Several activities are required to hydrolyze starch to its glucose units. These enzymes include alpha-amylase, beta-amylase, glucoamylase, alpha-glucosidase, pullulan-degrading enzymes, exoacting enzymes yielding alpha-type endproducts, and cyclodextrin glycosyltransferase. Properties of these enzymes vary and are somewhat linked to the environmental circumstances of the producing organisms. Features of the enzymes, their action patterns, physicochemical properties, occurrence, genetics, and results obtained from cloning of the genes are described. Among all the amylolytic enzymes, the genetics of alpha-amylase in Bacillus subtilis are best known. Alpha-Amylase production in B. subtilis is regulated by several genetic elements, many of which have synergistic effects. Genes encoding enzymes from all the amylolytic enzyme groups dealt with here have been cloned, and the sequences have been found to contain some highly conserved regions thought to be essential for their action and/or structure. Glucoamylase appears usually in several forms, which seem to be the results of a variety of mechanisms, including heterogeneous glycosylation, limited proteolysis, multiple modes of mRNA splicing, and the presence of several structural genes.

  8. Genomics, environmental genomics and the issue of microbial species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, D M; Cohan, F M; Bhaya, D; Heidelberg, J F; Kühl, M; Grossman, A

    2008-02-01

    A microbial species concept is crucial for interpreting the variation detected by genomics and environmental genomics among cultivated microorganisms and within natural microbial populations. Comparative genomic analyses of prokaryotic species as they are presently described and named have led to the provocative idea that prokaryotes may not form species as we think about them for plants and animals. There are good reasons to doubt whether presently recognized prokaryotic species are truly species. To achieve a better understanding of microbial species, we believe it is necessary to (i) re-evaluate traditional approaches in light of evolutionary and ecological theory, (ii) consider that different microbial species may have evolved in different ways and (iii) integrate genomic, metagenomic and genome-wide expression approaches with ecological and evolutionary theory. Here, we outline how we are using genomic methods to (i) identify ecologically distinct populations (ecotypes) predicted by theory to be species-like fundamental units of microbial communities, and (ii) test their species-like character through in situ distribution and gene expression studies. By comparing metagenomic sequences obtained from well-studied hot spring cyanobacterial mats with genomic sequences of two cultivated cyanobacterial ecotypes, closely related to predominant native populations, we can conduct in situ population genetics studies that identify putative ecotypes and functional genes that determine the ecotypes' ecological distinctness. If individuals within microbial communities are found to be grouped into ecologically distinct, species-like populations, knowing about such populations should guide us to a better understanding of how genomic variation is linked to community function.

  9. Teaching Microbial Growth by Simulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz, A. Fernandez; And Others

    1989-01-01

    Presented is a simulation program for Apple II computer which assays the effects of a series of variables on bacterial growth and interactions between microbial populations. Results of evaluation of the program with students are summarized. (CW)

  10. MICROBIAL MATS - A JOINT VENTURE

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    VANGEMERDEN, H

    1993-01-01

    Microbial mats characteristically are dominated by a few functional groups of microbes: cyanobacteria, colorless sulfur bacteria, purple sulfur bacteria, and sulfate-reducing bacteria. Their combined metabolic activities result in steep environmental microgradients, particularly of oxygen and sulfid

  11. Microbial production of gaseous hydrocarbons

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fukuda, Hideo

    1987-10-20

    Microbial production of ethylene, isobutane and a saturated gaseous hydrocarbon mixture was described. Microbial ethylene production was studied with Penicillium digitatum IFO 9372 and a novel pathway of the ethylene biosynthesis through alpha-ketoglutarate was proposed. Rhodotorula minuta IFO 1102 was selected for the microbial production of isobutane and the interesting actions of L-leucine and L-phenylalanine for the isobutane production were found. It was finally presented about the microbial production of a saturated gaseous hydrocarbon mixture with Rhizopus japonicus IFO 4758 was described. A gas mixture was produced through a chemical reaction of SH compounds and some cellular component such as squalene under aerobic conditions. (4 figs, 7 tabs, 41 refs)

  12. The microbial ecology of permafrost.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jansson, Janet K; Taş, Neslihan

    2014-06-01

    Permafrost constitutes a major portion of the terrestrial cryosphere of the Earth and is a unique ecological niche for cold-adapted microorganisms. There is a relatively high microbial diversity in permafrost, although there is some variation in community composition across different permafrost features and between sites. Some microorganisms are even active at subzero temperatures in permafrost. An emerging concern is the impact of climate change and the possibility of subsequent permafrost thaw promoting microbial activity in permafrost, resulting in increased potential for greenhouse-gas emissions. This Review describes new data on the microbial ecology of permafrost and provides a platform for understanding microbial life strategies in frozen soil as well as the impact of climate change on permafrost microorganisms and their functional roles.

  13. Microbially mediated mineral carbonation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Power, I. M.; Wilson, S. A.; Dipple, G. M.; Southam, G.

    2010-12-01

    Mineral carbonation involves silicate dissolution and carbonate precipitation, which are both natural processes that microorganisms are able to mediate in near surface environments (Ferris et al., 1994; Eq. 1). (Ca,Mg)SiO3 + 2H2CO3 + H2O → (Ca,Mg)CO3 + H2O + H4SiO4 + O2 (1) Cyanobacteria are photoautotrophs with cell surface characteristics and metabolic processes involving inorganic carbon that can induce carbonate precipitation. This occurs partly by concentrating cations within their net-negative cell envelope and through the alkalinization of their microenvironment (Thompson & Ferris, 1990). Regions with mafic and ultramafic bedrock, such as near Atlin, British Columbia, Canada, represent the best potential sources of feedstocks for mineral carbonation. The hydromagnesite playas near Atlin are a natural biogeochemical model for the carbonation of magnesium silicate minerals (Power et al., 2009). Field-based studies at Atlin and corroborating laboratory experiments demonstrate the ability of a microbial consortium dominated by filamentous cyanobacteria to induce the precipitation of carbonate minerals. Phototrophic microbes, such as cyanobacteria, have been proposed as a means for producing biodiesel and other value added products because of their efficiency as solar collectors and low requirement for valuable, cultivable land in comparison to crops (Dismukes et al., 2008). Carbonate precipitation and biomass production could be facilitated using specifically designed ponds to collect waters rich in dissolved cations (e.g., Mg2+ and Ca2+), which would allow for evapoconcentration and provide an appropriate environment for growth of cyanobacteria. Microbially mediated carbonate precipitation does not require large quantities of energy or chemicals needed for industrial systems that have been proposed for rapid carbon capture and storage via mineral carbonation (e.g., Lackner et al., 1995). Therefore, this biogeochemical approach may represent a readily

  14. Microbial hydrogen production

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Weaver, P.F.; Maness, P.C.; Martin, S. [National Renewable Energy Lab., Golden, CO (United States)] [and others

    1995-09-01

    Photosynthetic bacteria inhabit an anaerobic or microaerophilic world where H{sub 2} is produced and consumed as a shared intermediary metabolite. Within a given bacterial isolate there are as many as 4 to 6 distinct enzymes that function to evolve or consume H{sub 2}. Three of the H{sub 2}-evolving physiologies involving three different enzymes from photosynthetic bacteria have been examined in detail for commercial viability. Nitrogenase-mediated H{sub 2} production completely dissimilates many soluble organic compounds to H{sub 2} and CO{sub 2} at rates up to 131 {mu}mol H{sub 2}{sm_bullet}min{sup -1}{sm_bullet}g cdw{sup -1} and can remain active for up to 20 days. This metabolism is very energy intensive, however, which limits solar conversion efficiencies. Fermentative hydrogenase can produce H{sub 2} at rates of 440 {mu}mol{sm_bullet}min{sup -1}{sm_bullet}g cdw{sup -1} at low levels of irradiation over indefinite periods. The equilibrium for this activity is low (<0.15 atmospheres), thereby requiring gas sparging, vacuuming, or microbial scavenging to retain prolonged activity. Microbial H{sub 2} production from the CO component of synthesis or producer gases maximally reaches activities of 1.5 mmol{sm_bullet}min{sup -1}{sm_bullet}g cdw{sup -1}. Mass transport of gaseous CO into an aqueous bacterial suspension is the rate-limiting step. Increased gas pressure strongly accelerates these rates. Immobilized bacteria on solid supports at ambient pressures also show enhanced shift activity when the bulk water is drained away. Scaled-up bioreactors with 100-200 cc bed volume have been constructed and tested. The near-term goal of this portion of the project is to engineer and economically evaluate a prototype system for the biological production of H{sub 2} from biomass. The CO shift enables a positive selection technique for O{sub 2}-resistant, H{sub 2}-evolving bacterial enzymes from nature.

  15. Genetic modification and genetic determinism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vorhaus Daniel B

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract In this article we examine four objections to the genetic modification of human beings: the freedom argument, the giftedness argument, the authenticity argument, and the uniqueness argument. We then demonstrate that each of these arguments against genetic modification assumes a strong version of genetic determinism. Since these strong deterministic assumptions are false, the arguments against genetic modification, which assume and depend upon these assumptions, are therefore unsound. Serious discussion of the morality of genetic modification, and the development of sound science policy, should be driven by arguments that address the actual consequences of genetic modification for individuals and society, not by ones propped up by false or misleading biological assumptions.

  16. Microbial genomes: Blueprints for life

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Relman, David A.; Strauss, Evelyn

    2000-12-31

    Complete microbial genome sequences hold the promise of profound new insights into microbial pathogenesis, evolution, diagnostics, and therapeutics. From these insights will come a new foundation for understanding the evolution of single-celled life, as well as the evolution of more complex life forms. This report is an in-depth analysis of scientific issues that provides recommendations and will be widely disseminated to the scientific community, federal agencies, industry and the public.

  17. Microbial dynamics in natural aquifers

    OpenAIRE

    Bajracharya, Bijendra Man

    2016-01-01

    Microorganisms in groundwater form ecosystems that can transform chemical compounds. Quantitatively understanding microbial dynamics in soils and groundwater is thus essential for pollutant dynamics and biogeochemistry in the subsurface. This dissertation addresses three factors influencing microbial dynamics in aquifers and soils, namely: (1) the influence of grazing on bacteria in eutrophic aquifers, posing the question whether the carrying capacity of bacteria, which has been observed i...

  18. Establishment of new genetic traits in a microbial biofilm community

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Bjarke Bak; Sternberg, Claus; Andersen, Jens Bo

    1998-01-01

    that the frequency of horizontal plasmid transfer was low, and growth (vertical transfer) of the recipient strain was the major cause of plasmid establishment in the biofilm community, Employment of scanning confocal laser microscopy on fixed biofilms, combined with simultaneous identification of P. putida cells...

  19. Exploitation of molecular genetics in microbial degradation and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    acer

    and 105.9% and the nitrogen mass balance fell in the range of 98.4 and 160.0%. Key words: ... ship between the gene copy number and the PCR-DGGE band intensity ..... sole energy source, which is metabolized into methane and carbon ...

  20. Prediction of Competitive Microbial Growth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujikawa, Hiroshi

    2016-01-01

     Prediction of competitive microbial growth is becoming important for microbial food safety. There would be two approaches to predict competitive microbial growth with mathematical models. The first approach is the development of a growth model for competitive microbes. Among several candidates for the competition model considered, the combination of the primary growth model of the new logistic (NL) model and the competition model of the Lotka-Vorttera (LV) model showed the best performance in predicting microbial competitive growth in the mixed culture of two species. This system further successfully predicted the growth of three competitive species in mixed culture. The second approach is the application of the secondary model especially for the parameter of the maximum cell population in the primary growth model. The combination of the NL model and a polynomial model for the maximum population successfully predicted Salmonella growth in raw ground beef. This system further successfully predicted Salmonella growth in beef at various initial concentrations and temperatures. The first approach requires microbial growth data in monoculture for analysis. The second approach to the prediction of competitive growth from the viewpoint of microbial food safety would be more suitable for practical application.

  1. In-Drift Microbial Communities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    D. Jolley

    2000-11-09

    As directed by written work direction (CRWMS M and O 1999f), Performance Assessment (PA) developed a model for microbial communities in the engineered barrier system (EBS) as documented here. The purpose of this model is to assist Performance Assessment and its Engineered Barrier Performance Section in modeling the geochemical environment within a potential repository drift for TSPA-SR/LA, thus allowing PA to provide a more detailed and complete near-field geochemical model and to answer the key technical issues (KTI) raised in the NRC Issue Resolution Status Report (IRSR) for the Evolution of the Near Field Environment (NFE) Revision 2 (NRC 1999). This model and its predecessor (the in-drift microbial communities model as documented in Chapter 4 of the TSPA-VA Technical Basis Document, CRWMS M and O 1998a) was developed to respond to the applicable KTIs. Additionally, because of the previous development of the in-drift microbial communities model as documented in Chapter 4 of the TSPA-VA Technical Basis Document (CRWMS M and O 1998a), the M and O was effectively able to resolve a previous KTI concern regarding the effects of microbial processes on seepage and flow (NRC 1998). This document supercedes the in-drift microbial communities model as documented in Chapter 4 of the TSPA-VA Technical Basis Document (CRWMS M and O 1998a). This document provides the conceptual framework of the revised in-drift microbial communities model to be used in subsequent performance assessment (PA) analyses.

  2. Molecular ecology of microbial mats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolhuis, Henk; Cretoiu, Mariana Silvia; Stal, Lucas J

    2014-11-01

    Phototrophic microbial mats are ideal model systems for ecological and evolutionary analysis of highly diverse microbial communities. Microbial mats are small-scale, nearly closed, and self-sustaining benthic ecosystems that comprise the major element cycles, trophic levels, and food webs. The steep and fluctuating physicochemical microgradients, that are the result of the ever changing environmental conditions and of the microorganisms' own activities, give rise to a plethora of potential niches resulting in the formation of one of the most diverse microbial ecosystems known to date. For several decades, microbial mats have been studied extensively and more recently molecular biological techniques have been introduced that allowed assessing and investigating the diversity and functioning of these systems. These investigations also involved metagenomics analyses using high-throughput DNA and RNA sequencing. Here, we summarize some of the latest developments in metagenomic analysis of three representative phototrophic microbial mat types (coastal, hot spring, and hypersaline). We also present a comparison of the available metagenomic data sets from mats emphasizing the major differences between them as well as elucidating the overlap in overall community composition.

  3. Microbial Transformation of Arsenic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stolz, J. F.

    2004-12-01

    Whether the source is natural or anthropogenic, it has become evident that arsenic is readily transformed by a great diversity of microbial species and has a robust biogeochemical cycle. Arsenic cycling primarily involves the oxidation of As(III) and the reduction of As(V). Over thirty arsenite oxidizing prokaryotes have been reported and include alpha, beta, and gamma Proteobacteria , Deinocci and Crenarchaeota. At least twenty species of arsenate-respiring prokaryotes are now known and include Crenarchaeota, thermophilic bacteria, low and high G+C gram positive bacteria, and gamma, delta, and epsilon Proteobacteria. These organisms are metabolically diverse, and depending on the species, capable of using other terminal electron acceptors (e.g., nitrate, selenate, fumarate, sulfate). In addition to inorganic forms (e.g., sodium arsenate) organoarsenicals can be utilized as a substrate. The feed additive roxarsone (3-nitro-4-hydroxyphenyl arsonic acid) has been shown to readily degrade leading to the release of inorganic arsenic (e.g., As(V)). Degradation proceeds via the cleavage of the arsenate functional group or the reduction of the nitro functional group and deamination. The rapid degradation (within 3 days) of roxarsone by Clostridium sp. strain OhILAs appears to follow the latter pathway and may involve Stickland reactions. The activities of these organisms affect the speciation and mobilization of arsenic, ultimately impacting water quality.

  4. Chaos and microbial systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kot, M.

    1990-07-01

    A recurrent theme of much recent research is that seemingly random fluctuations often occur as the result of simple deterministic mechanisms. Hence, much of the recent work in nonlinear dynamics has centered on new techniques for identifying order in seemingly chaotic systems. To determine the robustness of these techniques, chaos must, to some extent, be brought into the laboratory. Preliminary investigations of the forced double-Monod equations, a model for a predator and a prey in a chemostat with periodic variation in inflowing substrate concentration, suggest that simple microbial systems may provide the perfect framework for determining the efficacy and relevance of the new nonlinear dynamics in dealing with complex population dynamics. This research has two main goals, that is the mathematical analysis and computer simulation of the periodically forced double-Monod equations and of related models; and experimental (chemostat) population studies that evaluate the accuracy and generality of the models, and that judge the usefulness of various new techniques of nonlinear dynamics to the study of populations.

  5. Microbial production of biovanillin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Converti

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available This review aims at providing an overview on the microbial production of vanillin, a new alternative method for the production of this important flavor of the food industry, which has the potential to become economically competitive in the next future. After a brief description of the applications of vanillin in different industrial sectors and of its physicochemical properties, we described the traditional ways of providing vanillin, specifically extraction and chemical synthesis (mainly oxidation and compared them with the new biotechnological options, i.e., biotransformations of caffeic acid, veratraldehyde and mainly ferulic acid. In the second part of the review, emphasis has been addressed to the factors most influencing the bioproduction of vanillin, specifically the age of inoculum, pH, temperature, type of co-substrate, as well as the inhibitory effects exerted either by excess substrate or product. The final part of the work summarized the downstream processes and the related unit operations involved in the recovery of vanillin from the bioconversion medium.

  6. Genetic Engineering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, John

    1973-01-01

    Presents a review of genetic engineering, in which the genotypes of plants and animals (including human genotypes) may be manipulated for the benefit of the human species. Discusses associated problems and solutions and provides an extensive bibliography of literature relating to genetic engineering. (JR)

  7. Genetic Counseling

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... for certain types of genetic conditions (such as Down syndrome) in the baby if mother-to-be is 35 years of age or more, or is concerned at any age about her chances of having a child with a genetic condition To learn about the ...

  8. Genetic Romanticism

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tupasela, Aaro

    2016-01-01

    . This article compares and contrasts the work of two doctors in Finland, Elias Lönnrot and Reijo Norio, working over a century and a half apart, to examine the ways in which they have contributed to the formation of national identity and unity. The notion of genetic romanticism is introduced as a term...... to complement the notion of national romanticism that has been used to describe the ways in which nineteenth-century scholars sought to create and deploy common traditions for national-romantic purposes. Unlike national romanticism, however, strategies of genetic romanticism rely on the study of genetic...... inheritance as a way to unify populations within politically and geographically bounded areas. Thus, new genetics have contributed to the development of genetic romanticisms, whereby populations (human, plant, and animal) can be delineated and mobilized through scientific and medical practices to represent...

  9. Microbial Source Tracking: Current and Future Molecular Tools in Microbial Water Quality Forensics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Current regulations in the United States stipulate that the microbial quality of waters used for consumption and recreational activities should be determined regularly by measuring microbial indicators of fecal pollution. Hence, the microbial risk associated with these waters is...

  10. Plants Rather than Mineral Fertilization Shape Microbial Community Structure and Functional Potential in Legacy Contaminated Soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ridl, Jakub; Kolar, Michal; Strejcek, Michal; Strnad, Hynek; Stursa, Petr; Paces, Jan; Macek, Tomas; Uhlik, Ondrej

    2016-01-01

    Plant-microbe interactions are of particular importance in polluted soils. This study sought to determine how selected plants (horseradish, black nightshade and tobacco) and NPK mineral fertilization shape the structure of soil microbial communities in legacy contaminated soil and the resultant impact of treatment on the soil microbial community functional potential. To explore these objectives, we combined shotgun metagenomics and 16S rRNA gene amplicon high throughput sequencing with data analysis approaches developed for RNA-seq. We observed that the presence of any of the selected plants rather than fertilization shaped the microbial community structure, and the microbial populations of the root zone of each plant significantly differed from one another and/or from the bulk soil, whereas the effect of the fertilizer proved to be insignificant. When we compared microbial diversity in root zones versus bulk soil, we observed an increase in the relative abundance of Alphaproteobacteria, Betaproteobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria or Bacteroidetes, taxa which are commonly considered copiotrophic. Our results thus align with the theory that fast-growing, copiotrophic, microorganisms which are adapted to ephemeral carbon inputs are enriched in the vegetated soil. Microbial functional potential indicated that some genetic determinants associated with signal transduction mechanisms, defense mechanisms or amino acid transport and metabolism differed significantly among treatments. Genetic determinants of these categories tend to be overrepresented in copiotrophic organisms. The results of our study further elucidate plant-microbe relationships in a contaminated environment with possible implications for the phyto/rhizoremediation of contaminated areas.

  11. [Microbial geochemical calcium cycle].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zavarzin, G A

    2002-01-01

    The participation of microorganisms in the geochemical calcium cycle is the most important factor maintaining neutral conditions on the Earth. This cycle has profound influence on the fate of inorganic carbon, and, thereby, on the removal of CO2 from the atmosphere. The major part of calcium deposits was formed in the Precambrian, when prokaryotic biosphere predominated. After that, calcium recycling based on biogenic deposition by skeletal organisms became the main process. Among prokaryotes, only a few representatives, e.g., cyanobacteria, exhibit a special calcium function. The geochemical calcium cycle is made possible by the universal features of bacteria involved in biologically mediated reactions and is determined by the activities of microbial communities. In the prokaryotic system, the calcium cycle begins with the leaching of igneous rock predominantly through the action of the community of organotrophic organisms. The release of carbon dioxide to the soil air by organotrophic aerobes leads to leaching with carbonic acid and soda salinization. Under anoxic conditions, of major importance is the organic acid production by primary anaerobes (fermentative microorganisms). Calcium carbonate is precipitated by secondary anaerobes (sulfate reducers) and to a smaller degree by methanogens. The role of the cyanobacterial community in carbonate deposition is exposed by stromatolites, which are the most common organo-sedimentary Precambrian structures. Deposition of carbonates in cyanobacterial mats as a consequence of photoassimilation of CO2 does not appear to be a significant process. It is argued that carbonates were deposited at the boundary between the "soda continent", which emerged as a result of subaerial leaching with carbonic acid, and the ocean containing Ca2+. Such ecotones provided favorable conditions for the development of the benthic cyanobacterial community, which was a precursor of stromatolites.

  12. Biotechnological Aspects of Microbial Extracellular Electron Transfer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kato, Souichiro

    2015-01-01

    Extracellular electron transfer (EET) is a type of microbial respiration that enables electron transfer between microbial cells and extracellular solid materials, including naturally-occurring metal compounds and artificial electrodes. Microorganisms harboring EET abilities have received considerable attention for their various biotechnological applications, in addition to their contribution to global energy and material cycles. In this review, current knowledge on microbial EET and its application to diverse biotechnologies, including the bioremediation of toxic metals, recovery of useful metals, biocorrosion, and microbial electrochemical systems (microbial fuel cells and microbial electrosynthesis), were introduced. Two potential biotechnologies based on microbial EET, namely the electrochemical control of microbial metabolism and electrochemical stimulation of microbial symbiotic reactions (electric syntrophy), were also discussed. PMID:26004795

  13. Metaproteomics: extracting and mining proteome information to characterize metabolic activities in microbial communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abraham, Paul E; Giannone, Richard J; Xiong, Weili; Hettich, Robert L

    2014-06-17

    Contemporary microbial ecology studies usually employ one or more "omics" approaches to investigate the structure and function of microbial communities. Among these, metaproteomics aims to characterize the metabolic activities of the microbial membership, providing a direct link between the genetic potential and functional metabolism. The successful deployment of metaproteomics research depends on the integration of high-quality experimental and bioinformatic techniques for uncovering the metabolic activities of a microbial community in a way that is complementary to other "meta-omic" approaches. The essential, quality-defining informatics steps in metaproteomics investigations are: (1) construction of the metagenome, (2) functional annotation of predicted protein-coding genes, (3) protein database searching, (4) protein inference, and (5) extraction of metabolic information. In this article, we provide an overview of current bioinformatic approaches and software implementations in metaproteome studies in order to highlight the key considerations needed for successful implementation of this powerful community-biology tool.

  14. [Fermentation production of microbial catalase and its application in textile industry].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Dongxu; Du, Guocheng; Chen, Jian

    2010-11-01

    Microbial catalase is an important industrial enzyme that catalyzes the decomposition of hydrogen peroxide to water and oxygen. This enzyme has great potential of application in food, textile and pharmaceutical industries. The production of microbial catalase has been significantly improved thanks to advances in bioprocess engineering and genetic engineering. In this paper, we review the progresses in fermentation production of microbial catalase and its application in textile industry. Among these progresses, we will highlight strain isolation, substrate and environment optimization, enzyme induction, construction of engineering strains and application process optimization. Meanwhile, we also address future research trends for microbial catalase production and its application in textile industry. Molecular modification (site-directed mutagenesis and directed revolution) will endue catalase with high pH and temperature stabilities. Improvement of catalase production, based on the understanding of induction mechanism and the process control of recombinant stain fermentation, will further accelerate the application of catalase in textile industry.

  15. Metaproteomics: extracting and mining proteome information to characterize metabolic activities in microbial communities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Abraham, Paul E [ORNL; Giannone, Richard J [ORNL; Xiong, Weili [ORNL; Hettich, Robert {Bob} L [ORNL

    2014-01-01

    Contemporary microbial ecology studies usually employ one or more omics approaches to investigate the structure and function of microbial communities. Among these, metaproteomics aims to characterize the metabolic activities of the microbial membership, providing a direct link between the genetic potential and functional metabolism. The successful deployment of metaproteomics research depends on the integration of high-quality experimental and bioinformatic techniques for uncovering the metabolic activities of a microbial community in a way that is complementary to other meta-omic approaches. The essential, quality-defining informatics steps in metaproteomics investigations are: (1) construction of the metagenome, (2) functional annotation of predicted protein-coding genes, (3) protein database searching, (4) protein inference, and (5) extraction of metabolic information. In this article, we provide an overview of current bioinformatic approaches and software implementations in metaproteome studies in order to highlight the key considerations needed for successful implementation of this powerful community-biology tool.

  16. Níveis de uréia na ração de novilhos de quatro grupos genéticos: estimativa da produção de proteína microbiana por meio dos derivados de purinas na urina utilizando duas metodologias de coleta Urea levels in diet for steers of four genetic groups: microbial protein production by the urinary purine derivatives, using two collection methodologies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luciana Navajas Rennó

    2008-03-01

    urinary purine derivatives was evaluated by using two collection methodologies in steers of four genetic groups: Holstein in, ½ Holstein-Guzera, ½ Holstein-Gir and Zebu. Animals were fed diets with 50:50 tifton-85 bermudagrass hay to concentrate ratio and assigned to four 4 ´ 4 latin squares (genetic groups: four animals, four experimental periods and four treatments (diets and were. Diets approximately contained 12% CP. The urine samples, from each experimental period, were obtained from 24-h collection and spot urine collection, when the animals spontaneously urinated. Analyses of purine derivatives, allantoin and uric acid were performed in the urine. A comparison among the microbial production using the purine bases in the abomasum and urinary purine derivatives; determination of microbial production by purine derivatives using two different equations or purine bases method in the abomasum; and estimate of urinary of purine derivatives and microbial production by means of spot urine collection and by 24-h total urine collection, were performed. Production and microbial efficiency showed higher values for Holstein animals, intermediary values for crossbred and smaller values for Zebu. The estimation of microbial nitrogen compounds production could be performed from the excretion of urinary purine derivatives. The spot urine collection is a fast and efficient methodology to estimate the excretion of urinary purine derivatives and the microbial nitrogen compounds production.

  17. Renewable biofuels bioconversion of lignocellulosic biomass by microbial community

    CERN Document Server

    Rana, Vandana

    2017-01-01

    This book offers a complete introduction for novices to understand key concepts of biocatalysis and how to produce in-house enzymes that can be used for low-cost biofuels production. The authors discuss the challenges involved in the commercialization of the biofuel industry, given the expense of commercial enzymes used for lignocellulose conversion. They describe the limitations in the process, such as complexity of lignocellulose structure, different microbial communities’ actions and interactions for degrading the recalcitrant structure of lignocellulosic materials, hydrolysis mechanism and potential for bio refinery. Readers will gain understanding of the key concepts of microbial catalysis of lignocellulosic biomass, process complexities and selection of microbes for catalysis or genetic engineering to improve the production of bioethanol or biofuel.

  18. Environmental shaping of codon usage and functional adaptation across microbial communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roller, Masa; Lucić, Vedran; Nagy, István; Perica, Tina; Vlahovicek, Kristian

    2013-10-01

    Microbial communities represent the largest portion of the Earth's biomass. Metagenomics projects use high-throughput sequencing to survey these communities and shed light on genetic capabilities that enable microbes to inhabit every corner of the biosphere. Metagenome studies are generally based on (i) classifying and ranking functions of identified genes; and (ii) estimating the phyletic distribution of constituent microbial species. To understand microbial communities at the systems level, it is necessary to extend these studies beyond the species' boundaries and capture higher levels of metabolic complexity. We evaluated 11 metagenome samples and demonstrated that microbes inhabiting the same ecological niche share common preferences for synonymous codons, regardless of their phylogeny. By exploring concepts of translational optimization through codon usage adaptation, we demonstrated that community-wide bias in codon usage can be used as a prediction tool for lifestyle-specific genes across the entire microbial community, effectively considering microbial communities as meta-genomes. These findings set up a 'functional metagenomics' platform for the identification of genes relevant for adaptations of entire microbial communities to environments. Our results provide valuable arguments in defining the concept of microbial species through the context of their interactions within the community.

  19. Functional implications of the microbial community structure of undefined mesophilic starter cultures

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smid, E.J.; Erkus, O.; Spus, M.; Wolkers-Rooijackers, J.C.M.; Alexeeva, S.V.; Kleerebezem, M.

    2014-01-01

    This review describes the recent advances made in the studies of the microbial community of complex and undefined cheese starter cultures. We report on work related to the composition of the cultures at the level of genetic lineages, on the presence and activity of bacteriophages and on the populati

  20. Prediction of Microbial Growth Rate versus Biomass Yield by a Metabolic Network with Kinetic Parameters

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Adadi, Roi; Volkmer, Benjamin; Milo, Ron; Heinemann, Matthias; Shlomi, Tomer

    2012-01-01

    Identifying the factors that determine microbial growth rate under various environmental and genetic conditions is a major challenge of systems biology. While current genome-scale metabolic modeling approaches enable us to successfully predict a variety of metabolic phenotypes, including maximal bio

  1. Prediction of Microbial Growth Rate versus Biomass Yield by a Metabolic Network with Kinetic Parameters

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Adadi, Roi; Volkmer, Benjamin; Milo, Ron; Heinemann, Matthias; Shlomi, Tomer

    Identifying the factors that determine microbial growth rate under various environmental and genetic conditions is a major challenge of systems biology. While current genome-scale metabolic modeling approaches enable us to successfully predict a variety of metabolic phenotypes, including maximal

  2. Microbial biosynthesis of alkanes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schirmer, Andreas; Rude, Mathew A; Li, Xuezhi; Popova, Emanuela; del Cardayre, Stephen B

    2010-07-30

    Alkanes, the major constituents of gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel, are naturally produced by diverse species; however, the genetics and biochemistry behind this biology have remained elusive. Here we describe the discovery of an alkane biosynthesis pathway from cyanobacteria. The pathway consists of an acyl-acyl carrier protein reductase and an aldehyde decarbonylase, which together convert intermediates of fatty acid metabolism to alkanes and alkenes. The aldehyde decarbonylase is related to the broadly functional nonheme diiron enzymes. Heterologous expression of the alkane operon in Escherichia coli leads to the production and secretion of C13 to C17 mixtures of alkanes and alkenes. These genes and enzymes can now be leveraged for the simple and direct conversion of renewable raw materials to fungible hydrocarbon fuels.

  3. Colorful Microbial Cell Factories

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Petersen, Pia Damm

    Yeast cell factories are powerful tools used for the production of high-value natural compounds otherwise not easily available. Many bioactive and industrially important plant secondary metabolites can be produced in yeast by engineering their biosynthetic pathways into yeast cells, as these both...... anthocyanins. Yeast cell factories present a platform to circumvent the problem of low yields of interesting molecular structures in plant tissues, as hand-picking of desired enzyme activities allows for specific biosynthesis of the precise pigment of interest, as well as choosing more stable structures...... for heterologous biosynthesis is possible. In cell factories, great improvements in yields can be achieved through molecular engineering of flux from endogenous yeast precursors, e.g. by elimination of by-product formation, and by genetic optimization of pathway components, such as fine-tuning of expression levels...

  4. Modeling microbial growth and dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esser, Daniel S; Leveau, Johan H J; Meyer, Katrin M

    2015-11-01

    Modeling has become an important tool for widening our understanding of microbial growth in the context of applied microbiology and related to such processes as safe food production, wastewater treatment, bioremediation, or microbe-mediated mining. Various modeling techniques, such as primary, secondary and tertiary mathematical models, phenomenological models, mechanistic or kinetic models, reactive transport models, Bayesian network models, artificial neural networks, as well as agent-, individual-, and particle-based models have been applied to model microbial growth and activity in many applied fields. In this mini-review, we summarize the basic concepts of these models using examples and applications from food safety and wastewater treatment systems. We further review recent developments in other applied fields focusing on models that explicitly include spatial relationships. Using these examples, we point out the conceptual similarities across fields of application and encourage the combined use of different modeling techniques in hybrid models as well as their cross-disciplinary exchange. For instance, pattern-oriented modeling has its origin in ecology but may be employed to parameterize microbial growth models when experimental data are scarce. Models could also be used as virtual laboratories to optimize experimental design analogous to the virtual ecologist approach. Future microbial growth models will likely become more complex to benefit from the rich toolbox that is now available to microbial growth modelers.

  5. Comparative Microbial Genomics and Forensics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Massey, Steven E

    2016-08-01

    Forensic science concerns the application of scientific techniques to questions of a legal nature and may also be used to address questions of historical importance. Forensic techniques are often used in legal cases that involve crimes against persons or property, and they increasingly may involve cases of bioterrorism, crimes against nature, medical negligence, or tracing the origin of food- and crop-borne disease. Given the rapid advance of genome sequencing and comparative genomics techniques, we ask how these might be used to address cases of a forensic nature, focusing on the use of microbial genome sequence analysis. Such analyses rely on the increasingly large numbers of microbial genomes present in public databases, the ability of individual investigators to rapidly sequence whole microbial genomes, and an increasing depth of understanding of their evolution and function. Suggestions are made as to how comparative microbial genomics might be applied forensically and may represent possibilities for the future development of forensic techniques. A particular emphasis is on the nascent field of genomic epidemiology, which utilizes rapid whole-genome sequencing to identify the source and spread of infectious outbreaks. Also discussed is the application of comparative microbial genomics to the study of historical epidemics and deaths and how the approaches developed may also be applicable to more recent and actionable cases.

  6. MICROBIAL SURFACTANTS IN ENVIRONMENTAL TECHNOLOGIES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. P. Pirog

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available It was shown literature and own experimental data concerning the use of microbial surface active glycolipids (rhamno-, sophoro- and trehalose lipids and lipopeptides for water and soil purification from oil and other hydrocarbons, removing toxic heavy metals (Cu2+, Cd2+, Ni2+, Pb2+, degradation of complex pollution (oil and other hydrocarbons with heavy metals, and the role of microbial surfactants in phytoremediation processes. The factors that limit the use of microbial surfactants in environmental technologies are discussed. Thus, at certain concentrations biosurfactant can exhibit antimicrobial properties and inhibit microorganisms destructing xenobiotics. Microbial biodegradability of surfactants may also reduce the effectiveness of bioremediation. Development of effective technologies using microbial surfactants should include the following steps: monitoring of contaminated sites to determine the nature of pollution and analysis of the autochthonous microbiota; determining the mode of surfactant introduction (exogenous addition of stimulation of surfactant synthesis by autochthonous microbiota; establishing an optimal concentration of surfactant to prevent exhibition of antimicrobial properties and rapid biodegradation; research both in laboratory and field conditions.

  7. Microbial ecology: Fundamentals and applications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Atlas, R.M.; Bartha, R.

    1986-01-01

    Chapter 1 contains a short historical introduction. Chapter 2, represents an updated review of microbial diversity and systematics. It also provides essential information required for the understanding of the form, function, and systematic relationship of microorganisms. Chapter 3 is devoted to the formation and structure of microbial communities, and deals with this subject both in the evolutionary and successional senses. Chapter 4 describes the interactions between microorganisms, and Chapters 5 and 6 explore the interactions of microorganisms with plants and with animals, respectively. Chapter 7 discusses the quantitative measurement of numbers, biomass, and activity of microorganisms; Chapter 8 examines the influence and the measurement of their environmental determinants. Chapter 9 presents air, water, and soil as microbial habitats and describes the typical composition of their communities. Chapters 10 and 11 contain an expanded discussion of the biogeochemical cycling activities performed by microbial communities. Chapters 12-15 deal with applied aspects of microbial ecology evident in biodeterioration control, sanitation, soil conservation, pollution control, resource recovery, and biological control.

  8. Genetic Breakthrough

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2008-01-01

    A new calf breeding technique shows promise for treating malignant tumors Chinese scientists have successfully bred a genetically altered cow capable of producing cancer-curing proteins for human beings.

  9. Mitochondrial genetics

    OpenAIRE

    Chinnery, Patrick Francis; Hudson, Gavin

    2013-01-01

    Introduction In the last 10 years the field of mitochondrial genetics has widened, shifting the focus from rare sporadic, metabolic disease to the effects of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) variation in a growing spectrum of human disease. The aim of this review is to guide the reader through some key concepts regarding mitochondria before introducing both classic and emerging mitochondrial disorders. Sources of data In this article, a review of the current mitochondrial genetics literature was con...

  10. Precambrian Skeletonized Microbial Eukaryotes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lipps, Jere H.

    2017-04-01

    . Tintinnids first appear in the mid-Mesozoic, like other modern planktic groups, including planktic foraminifera, new types of radiolarians, and a host of skeletal micro-algae. Microbial eukaryotes track algal eukaryote and metazoan evolution—none or very few in the Precambrian, some in the early Paleozoic with radiations in the later Paleozoic, Mesozoic and Cenozoic, with extinctions ( 30) reducing their biodiversity at particular times in the fossil record—thus indicating strong environmental selection on all marine groups.

  11. Pyrite oxidation by microbial consortia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bostick, B. C.; Revill, K. L.; Doyle, C.; Kendelewicz, T.; Brown, G. E.; Spormann, A. M.; Fendorf, S.

    2003-12-01

    Acid mine drainage (AMD) is formed through pyrite oxidation, which produces acidity and releases toxic metals associated with pyrite and other sulfide minerals. Microbes accelerate pyrite oxidation markedly, thereby playing a major role in the production of AMD. Here, we probe pyrite oxidation by consortia of Thiobacillus ferrooxidans and thiooxidans using surface-sensitive photoelectron spectroscopy and X-ray absorption spectroscopy and compare them with surfaces oxidized through chemical and single species cultures. Microbial oxidation resulted in the formation of distinct oxidized surface species distributed non-uniformly over the pyrite surface; consortia produced a surface both more heterogeneous and more oxidized. In contrast, chemical oxidation proceeds without the build-up of passivating oxidation products. Surface morphology was not correlated with sites of nucleation or oxidation in any obvious manner. These results demonstrate that microbial oxidation occurs through a similar mechanism to chemical oxidation, but that the presence of complex microbial communities may impact the manner by which pyrite oxidation proceeds.

  12. Microbial metagenomics: beyond the genome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilbert, Jack A; Dupont, Christopher L

    2011-01-01

    Metagenomics literally means "beyond the genome." Marine microbial metagenomic databases presently comprise approximately 400 billion base pairs of DNA, only approximately 3% of that found in 1 ml of seawater. Very soon a trillion-base-pair sequence run will be feasible, so it is time to reflect on what we have learned from metagenomics. We review the impact of metagenomics on our understanding of marine microbial communities. We consider the studies facilitated by data generated through the Global Ocean Sampling expedition, as well as the revolution wrought at the individual laboratory level through next generation sequencing technologies. We review recent studies and discoveries since 2008, provide a discussion of bioinformatic analyses, including conceptual pipelines and sequence annotation and predict the future of metagenomics, with suggestions of collaborative community studies tailored toward answering some of the fundamental questions in marine microbial ecology.

  13. Microbial Metagenomics: Beyond the Genome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilbert, Jack A.; Dupont, Christopher L.

    2011-01-01

    Metagenomics literally means “beyond the genome.” Marine microbial metagenomic databases presently comprise ˜400 billion base pairs of DNA, only ˜3% of that found in 1 ml of seawater. Very soon a trillion-base-pair sequence run will be feasible, so it is time to reflect on what we have learned from metagenomics. We review the impact of metagenomics on our understanding of marine microbial communities. We consider the studies facilitated by data generated through the Global Ocean Sampling expedition, as well as the revolution wrought at the individual laboratory level through next generation sequencing technologies. We review recent studies and discoveries since 2008, provide a discussion of bioinformatic analyses, including conceptual pipelines and sequence annotation and predict the future of metagenomics, with suggestions of collaborative community studies tailored toward answering some of the fundamental questions in marine microbial ecology.

  14. Microbial forensics: the next forensic challenge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Budowle, Bruce; Murch, Randall; Chakraborty, Ranajit

    2005-11-01

    Pathogens and toxins can be converted to bioweapons and used to commit bioterrorism and biocrime. Because of the potential and relative ease of an attack using a bioweapon, forensic science needs to be prepared to assist in the investigation to bring perpetrators to justice and to deter future attacks. A new subfield of forensics--microbial forensics--has been created, which is focused on characterization of evidence from a bioterrorism act, biocrime, hoax, or an inadvertent release. Forensic microbiological investigations are essentially the same as any other forensic investigation regarding processing. They involve crime scene(s) investigation, chain of custody practices, evidence collection, handling and preservation, evidence shipping, analysis of evidence, interpretation of results, and court presentation. In addition to collecting and analyzing traditional forensic evidence, the forensic investigation will attempt to determine the etiology and identity of the causal agent, often in a similar fashion as in an epidemiologic investigation. However, for attribution, higher-resolution characterization is needed. The tools for attribution include genetic- and nongenetic-based assays and informatics to attempt to determine the unique source of a sample or at least eliminate some sources. In addition, chemical and physical assays may help determine the process used to prepare, store, or disseminate the bioweapon. An effective microbial forensics program will require development and/or validation of all aspects of the forensic investigative process, from sample collection to interpretation of results. Quality assurance (QA) and QC practices, comparable to those used by the forensic DNA science community, are being implemented. Lastly, partnerships with other laboratories will be requisite, because many of the necessary capabilities for analysis will not reside in the traditional forensic laboratory.

  15. Microbial Communities Associated with Phosphorite-bearing Sediments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zoss, R.; Bailey, J.; Flood, B.; Jones, D. S.

    2016-12-01

    Phosphorus is a limiting nutrient in the environment and is an important component of many biological molecules. Calcium phosphate mineral deposits known as phosphorites, are also the primary source of P for agriculture. Understanding phosphorite formation may improve management of P resources. However, the processes that mediate calcium phosphate mineral precipitation in certain marine pore waters remain poorly understood. Phosphogenesis occurs in sediments beneath some oceanic upwelling zones that harbor polyphosphate-accumulating giant sulfur bacteria (GSB). These bacteria may concentrate phosphate in sediment pore waters - creating supersaturated conditions with respect to apatite. However, the relationship between microbes and phosphogenesis is not fully resolved. To further study this relationship, we examined microbial communities from two sources: sediment cores recovered from the shelf of the Benguela region, and DNA extracted from washed phosphorites recovered from those same sediments. We used itag and clone library sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene to examine the microbial communities and their relationship with the environment. We found that many of our sediments shared large numbers of phylotypes with one another, and that the same metabolic guilds were represented at localities across the shelf. Sulfur-reducing bacteria and sulfur-oxidizing bacteria were abundant in our datasets. Phylotypes that are known to carry out nitrification and/or anammox (anaerobic ammonia oxidation) were also well-represented. Our phosphorite extraction, however, contained a distinct microbial community from those observed in the modern sediments. We observed both an enrichment of certain common microbial classes and a complete absence of others. These results could represent an ancient microbial assemblage that was present when the apatite precipitated. While these taxa may or may not have contributed to apatite precipitation, several groups represented in the phosphorite

  16. Advanced Microscopy of Microbial Cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Haagensen, Janus Anders Juul; Regenberg, Birgitte; Sternberg, Claus

    2011-01-01

    microscopy, super-resolution optical microscopy (STED, SIM, PALM) as well as atomic force microscopy and Raman spectroscopy. Using examples of bistability in microbial populations as well as biofilm development and differentiation in bacterial and yeast consortia, we demonstrate the importance of microscopy......Growing awareness of heterogeneity in cells of microbial populations has emphasized the importance of advanced microscopy for visualization and understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying cell-to-cell variation. In this review, we highlight some of the recent advances in confocal...

  17. Diagnosing and managing microbial keratitis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Madan P Upadhyay

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Infections of the cornea can lead to corneal opacity and blindness if not identified quickly and managed appropriately. The terms ‘microbial keratitis’, ‘infective keratitis’ and ‘suppurative keratitis’ are all used to describe suppurative infections of the cornea. In this issue we use the term microbial keratitis. These infections are characterised by the presence of white or yellowish infiltrates in the corneal stroma, with or without an overlaying corneal epithelial defect, and associated with signs of inflammation.

  18. Systems biology of Microbial Communities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Navid, A; Ghim, C; Fenley, A; Yoon, S; Lee, S; Almaas, E

    2008-04-11

    Microbes exist naturally in a wide range of environments, spanning the extremes of high acidity and high temperature to soil and the ocean, in communities where their interactions are significant. We present a practical discussion of three different approaches for modeling microbial communities: rate equations, individual-based modeling, and population dynamics. We illustrate the approaches with detailed examples. Each approach is best fit to different levels of system representation, and they have different needs for detailed biological input. Thus, this set of approaches is able to address the operation and function of microbial communities on a wide range of organizational levels.

  19. Microbial Genomics Research in China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHAO Guo-ping

    2004-01-01

    @@ Microorganisms, including phage/virus, were initial targets and tools for developing DNA sequencing technology. Microbial genomic study was started as a model system for the Human Genome Project (HGP) and it did successfully supported the HGP, particularly with respect to BAC contig construction and large-scale shotgun sequencing and assembly. Microbial genomics study has become the fastest developed genomics discipline along with HGP, taking the advantage of the organisms' highly diversified physiology, extremely long history of evolution, close relationship with human/environment,as well as relatively small genome sizes and simple systems for functional analysis.

  20. Microbial Genomics Research in China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHAOGuo-ping

    2004-01-01

    Microorganisms, including phage/virus, were initial targets and tools for developing DNA sequencing technology. Microbial genomic study was started as a model system for the Human Genome Project (HGP) and it did successfully supported the HGP, particularly with respect to BAC contig construction and large-scale shotgun sequencing and assembly. Microbial genomics study has become the fastest developed genomics discipline along with HGP, taking the advantage of the organisms' highly diversified physiology, extremely long history of evolution, close relationship with human/environment,as well as relatively small genome sizes and simple systems for functional analysis.

  1. Microbial quality of a marine tidal pool

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Genthe, Bettina

    1995-01-01

    Full Text Available In this study the source of microbial pollution to a tidal pool was investigated. Both adjacent seawater which could contribute to possible faecal pollution and potential direct bather pollution were studied. The microbial quality of the marine...

  2. Microbially induced and microbially catalysed precipitation: two different carbonate factories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meister, Patrick

    2016-04-01

    The landmark paper by Schlager (2003) has revealed three types of benthic carbonate production referred to as "carbonate factories", operative at different locations at different times in Earth history. The tropical or T-factory comprises the classical platforms and fringing reefs and is dominated by carbonate precipitation by autotrophic calcifying metazoans ("biotically controlled" precipitation). The cool or C-factory is also biotically controlled but via heterotrophic, calcifying metazoans in cold and deep waters at the continental margins. A further type is the mud-mound or M-factory, where carbonate precipitation is supported by microorganisms but not controlled by a specific enzymatic pathway ("biotically induced" precipitation). How exactly the microbes influence precipitation is still poorly understood. Based on recent experimental and field studies, the microbial influence on modern mud mound and microbialite growth includes two fundamentally different processes: (1) Metabolic activity of microbes may increase the saturation state with respect to a particular mineral phase, thereby indirectly driving the precipitation of the mineral phase: microbially induced precipitation. (2) In a situation, where a solution is already supersaturated but precipitation of the mineral is inhibited by a kinetic barrier, microbes may act as a catalyser, i.e. they lower the kinetic barrier: microbially catalysed precipitation. Such a catalytic effect can occur e.g. via secreted polymeric substances or specific chemical groups on the cell surface, at which the minerals nucleate or which facilitate mechanistically the bonding of new ions to the mineral surface. Based on these latest developments in microbialite formation, I propose to extend the scheme of benthic carbonate factories of Schlager et al. (2003) by introducing an additional branch distinguishing microbially induced from microbially catalysed precipitation. Although both mechanisms could be operative in a M

  3. Microbial community structure elucidates performance of Glyceria maxima plant microbial fuel cell

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Timmers, R.A.; Rothballer, M.; Strik, D.P.B.T.B.; Engel, M.; Schulz, M.; Hartmann, A.; Hamelers, H.V.M.; Buisman, C.J.N.

    2012-01-01

    The plant microbial fuel cell (PMFC) is a technology in which living plant roots provide electron donor, via rhizodeposition, to a mixed microbial community to generate electricity in a microbial fuel cell. Analysis and localisation of the microbial community is necessary for gaining insight into

  4. Microbial community structure elucidates performance of Glyceria maxima plant microbial fuel cell

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Timmers, R.A.; Rothballer, M.; Strik, D.P.B.T.B.; Engel, M.; Schulz, M.; Hartmann, A.; Hamelers, H.V.M.; Buisman, C.J.N.

    2012-01-01

    The plant microbial fuel cell (PMFC) is a technology in which living plant roots provide electron donor, via rhizodeposition, to a mixed microbial community to generate electricity in a microbial fuel cell. Analysis and localisation of the microbial community is necessary for gaining insight into th

  5. Microbial keratitis: a community eye health approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kieran S O’Brien

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Microbial keratitis is an infection of the cornea. Corneal opacities, which are frequently due to microbial keratitis, remain among the top five causes of blindness worldwide. Microbial keratitis disproportionately affects low- and middle-income countries. Studies indicate that the incidence of microbial keratitis may be up to 10 times higher in countries like Nepal and India compared to the United States.

  6. Elucidating Microbial Adaptation Dynamics via Autonomous Exposure and Sampling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grace, Joseph M.; Verseux, Cyprien; Gentry, Diana; Moffet, Amy; Thayabaran, Ramanen; Wong, Nathan; Rothschild, Lynn

    2013-01-01

    The adaptation of micro-organisms to their environments is a complex process of interaction between the pressures of the environment and of competition. Reducing this multifactorial process to environmental exposure in the laboratory is a common tool for elucidating individual mechanisms of evolution, such as mutation rates. Although such studies inform fundamental questions about the way adaptation and even speciation occur, they are often limited by labor-intensive manual techniques. Current methods for controlled study of microbial adaptation limit the length of time, the depth of collected data, and the breadth of applied environmental conditions. Small idiosyncrasies in manual techniques can have large effects on outcomes; for example, there are significant variations in induced radiation resistances following similar repeated exposure protocols. We describe here a project under development to allow rapid cycling of multiple types of microbial environmental exposure. The system allows continuous autonomous monitoring and data collection of both single species and sampled communities, independently and concurrently providing multiple types of controlled environmental pressure (temperature, radiation, chemical presence or absence, and so on) to a microbial community in dynamic response to the ecosystem's current status. When combined with DNA sequencing and extraction, such a controlled environment can cast light on microbial functional development, population dynamics, inter- and intra-species competition, and microbe-environment interaction. The project's goal is to allow rapid, repeatable iteration of studies of both natural and artificial microbial adaptation. As an example, the same system can be used both to increase the pH of a wet soil aliquot over time while periodically sampling it for genetic activity analysis, or to repeatedly expose a culture of bacteria to the presence of a toxic metal, automatically adjusting the level of toxicity based on the

  7. Belowground environmental effects of transgenic crops: a soil microbial perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turrini, Alessandra; Sbrana, Cristiana; Giovannetti, Manuela

    2015-04-01

    Experimental studies investigated the effects of transgenic crops on the structure, function and diversity of soil and rhizosphere microbial communities playing key roles in belowground environments. Here we review available data on direct, indirect and pleiotropic effects of engineered plants on soil microbiota, considering both the technology and the genetic construct utilized. Plants modified to express phytopathogen/phytoparasite resistance, or traits beneficial to food industries and consumers, differentially affected soil microorganisms depending on transformation events, experimental conditions and taxa analyzed. Future studies should address the development of harmonized methodologies by taking into account the complex interactions governing soil life. Copyright © 2015 Institut Pasteur. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  8. Microbiële kwaliteit voorspellen

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vissers, M.; Straver, J.M.; Giffel, te M.C.; Jong, de P.; Zwietering, M.H.; Boekel, van M.A.J.S.; Lankveld, J.M.G.

    2004-01-01

    Microbial quality and safety of foodstuffs can be improved by reducing the microbial load of the raw materials. Especially in products in which microbial spoilage is caused by sporeforming bacteria this can be the only solution. Combining existing datasets, expert knowledge and quantitative modeling

  9. In situ microbial filter used for bioremediation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carman, M. Leslie; Taylor, Robert T.

    2000-01-01

    An improved method for in situ microbial filter bioremediation having increasingly operational longevity of an in situ microbial filter emplaced into an aquifer. A method for generating a microbial filter of sufficient catalytic density and thickness, which has increased replenishment interval, improved bacteria attachment and detachment characteristics and the endogenous stability under in situ conditions. A system for in situ field water remediation.

  10. Genetic GIScience

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jacquez, Geoffrey; Sabel, Clive E; Shi, Chen

    2015-01-01

    The exposome, defined as the totality of an individual's exposures over the life course, is a seminal concept in the environmental health sciences. Although inherently geographic, the exposome as yet is unfamiliar to many geographers. This article proposes a place-based synthesis, genetic...... geographic information science (genetic GIScience), that is founded on the exposome, genome+, and behavome. It provides an improved understanding of human health in relation to biology (the genome+), environmental exposures (the exposome), and their social, societal, and behavioral determinants (the behavome......). Genetic GIScience poses three key needs: first, a mathematical foundation for emergent theory; second, process-based models that bridge biological and geographic scales; third, biologically plausible estimates of space?time disease lags. Compartmental models are a possible solution; this article develops...

  11. System for detecting microbial contamination

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gerritse, J.; Groenestijn, J.W.; Zegers, N.D.

    2009-01-01

    The present invention relates to a system for detecting microbial contamination of a liquid specimen comprising a device for concentrating micro-organisms from a liquid specimen, having (i) a hypobaric chamber, (ii) a filter housing comprising a liquid-permeable bed of an adsorbent material and adap

  12. Towards a microbial thermoelectric cell.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raúl Rodríguez-Barreiro

    Full Text Available Microbial growth is an exothermic process. Biotechnological industries produce large amounts of heat, usually considered an undesirable by-product. In this work, we report the construction and characterization of the first microbial thermoelectric cell (MTC, in which the metabolic heat produced by a thermally insulated microbial culture is partially converted into electricity through a thermoelectric device optimized for low ΔT values. A temperature of 41°C and net electric voltage of around 250-600 mV was achieved with 1.7 L baker's yeast culture. This is the first time microbial metabolic energy has been converted into electricity with an ad hoc thermoelectric device. These results might contribute towards developing a novel strategy to harvest excess heat in the biotechnology industry, in processes such as ethanol fermentation, auto thermal aerobic digestion (ATAD or bioremediation, which could be coupled with MTCs in a single unit to produce electricity as a valuable by-product of the primary biotechnological product. Additionally, we propose that small portable MTCs could be conceived and inoculated with suitable thermophilic of hyperthermophilic starter cultures and used for powering small electric devices.

  13. Advanced microscopy of microbial cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Haagensen, Janus Anders Juul; Regenberg, Birgitte; Sternberg, Claus

    2011-01-01

    Growing awareness of heterogeneity in cells of microbial populations has emphasized the importance of advanced microscopy for visualization and understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying cell-to-cell variation. In this review, we highlight some of the recent advances in confocal microsc...

  14. Ion-Pumping Microbial Rhodopsins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hideki eKandori

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Rhodopsins are light-sensing proteins used in optogenetics. The word rhodopsin originates from the Greek words rhodo and opsis, indicating rose and sight, respectively. Although the classical meaning of rhodopsin is the red-colored pigment in our eyes, the modern meaning of rhodopsin encompasses photoactive proteins containing a retinal chromophore in animals and microbes. Animal and microbial rhodopsins possess 11-cis and all-trans retinal, respectively, to capture light in seven transmembrane α-helices, and photoisomerizations into all-trans and 13-cis forms, respectively, initiate each function. Ion-transporting proteins can be found in microbial rhodopsins, such as light-gated channels and light-driven pumps, which are the main tools in optogenetics. Light-driven pumps, such as archaeal H+ pump bacteriorhodopsin (BR and Cl- pump halorhodopsin (HR, were discovered in the 1970s, and their mechanism has been extensively studied. On the other hand, different kinds of H+ and Cl- pumps have been found in marine bacteria, such as proteorhodopsin (PR and Fulvimarina pelagi rhodopsin (FR, respectively. In addition, a light-driven Na+ pump was found, Krokinobacter eikastus rhodopsin 2 (KR2. These light-driven ion-pumping microbial rhodopsins are classified as DTD, TSA, DTE, NTQ and NDQ rhodopsins for BR, HR, PR, FR and KR2, respectively. Recent understanding of ion-pumping microbial rhodopsins is reviewed in this paper.

  15. Microbial transformation of antimalarial terpenoids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parshikov, Igor A; Netrusov, Alexander I; Sutherland, John B

    2012-01-01

    The fungal and bacterial transformation of terpenoids derived from plant essential oils, especially the sesquiterpenoid artemisinin from Artemisia annua, has produced several new candidate drugs for the treatment of malaria. Obtaining new derivatives of terpenoids, including artemisinin derivatives with increased antimalarial activity, is an important goal of research in microbial biotechnology and medicinal chemistry.

  16. The microbial contribution to macroecology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Albert eBarberan

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available There has been a recent explosion of research within the field of microbial ecology that has been fueled, in part, by methodological improvements that make it feasible to characterize microbial communities to an extent that was inconceivable only a few years ago. Furthermore, there is increasing recognition within the field of ecology that microorganisms play a critical role in the health of organisms and ecosystems. Despite these developments, an important gap still persists between the theoretical framework of macroecology and microbial ecology. We highlight two idiosyncrasies of microorganisms that are fundamental to understanding macroecological patterns and their mechanistic drivers. First, high dispersal rates provide novel opportunities to test the relative importance of niche, stochastic, and historical processes in structuring biological communities. Second, high speciation rates potentially lead to the convergence of ecological and evolutionary time scales. After reviewing these unique aspects, we discuss strategies for improving the conceptual integration of microbes into macroecology. As examples, we discuss the use of phylogenetic ecology as an integrative approach to explore patterns across the tree of life. Then we demonstrate how two general theories of biodiversity (i.e., the recently developed theory of stochastic geometry and the neutral theory can be adapted to microorganisms. We demonstrate how conceptual models that integrate evolutionary and ecological mechanisms can contribute to the unification of microbial ecology and macroecology.

  17. Towards a microbial thermoelectric cell.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez-Barreiro, Raúl; Abendroth, Christian; Vilanova, Cristina; Moya, Andrés; Porcar, Manuel

    2013-01-01

    Microbial growth is an exothermic process. Biotechnological industries produce large amounts of heat, usually considered an undesirable by-product. In this work, we report the construction and characterization of the first microbial thermoelectric cell (MTC), in which the metabolic heat produced by a thermally insulated microbial culture is partially converted into electricity through a thermoelectric device optimized for low ΔT values. A temperature of 41°C and net electric voltage of around 250-600 mV was achieved with 1.7 L baker's yeast culture. This is the first time microbial metabolic energy has been converted into electricity with an ad hoc thermoelectric device. These results might contribute towards developing a novel strategy to harvest excess heat in the biotechnology industry, in processes such as ethanol fermentation, auto thermal aerobic digestion (ATAD) or bioremediation, which could be coupled with MTCs in a single unit to produce electricity as a valuable by-product of the primary biotechnological product. Additionally, we propose that small portable MTCs could be conceived and inoculated with suitable thermophilic of hyperthermophilic starter cultures and used for powering small electric devices.

  18. RNA genetics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Domingo, E. (Instituto de Biologia Molecular, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad Autonoma de Madrid, Canto Blanco, Madrid (ES)); Holland, J.J. (California Univ., San Diego, La Jolla, CA (USA). Dept. of Biology); Ahlquist, P. (Wisconsin Univ., Madison, WI (USA). Dept. of Plant Pathology)

    1988-01-01

    This book contains the proceedings on RNA genetics: RNA-directed virus replication Volume 1. Topics covered include: Replication of the poliovirus genome; Influenza viral RNA transcription and replication; and Relication of the reoviridal: Information derived from gene cloning and expression.

  19. Genetic counseling

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... MF, eds. Creasy and Resnik's Maternal-Fetal Medicine: Principles and Practice . 7th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2014:chap 30. Review Date 1/25/2016 Updated by: Chad Haldeman-Englert, MD, FACMG, Fullerton Genetics Center, Asheville, NC. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare ...

  20. Biogeography rather than association with cyanobacteria structures symbiotic microbial communities in the marine sponge Petrosia ficiformis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burgsdorf, Ilia; Erwin, Patrick M.; López-Legentil, Susanna; Cerrano, Carlo; Haber, Markus; Frenk, Sammy; Steindler, Laura

    2014-01-01

    The sponge Petrosia ficiformis is ubiquitous in the Mediterranean Sea and Eastern Atlantic Ocean, hosting a diverse assemblage of bacteria, including, in illuminated sites, cyanobacteria. Two closely related sponge color morphs have been described, one inside caves and at their entrance (white/pink), and one on the rocky cliffs (violet). The presence of the different morphs and their ubiquity in the Mediterranean (from North-West to South-East) provides an opportunity to examine which factors mostly affect the associated microbial communities in this species: (i) presence of phototrophic symbionts or (ii) biogeography. 16S rRNA gene tag pyrosequencing data of the microbial communities revealed that Chloroflexi, Gammaproteobacteria, and Acidobacteria dominated the bacterial communities of all sponges analyzed. Chlorophyll a content, TEM observations and DNA sequence data confirmed the presence of the cyanobacterium Synechococcus feldmannii in violet and pink morphs of P. ficiformis and their absence in white color morphs. Rather than cyanobacterial symbionts (i.e., color morphs) accounting for variability in microbial symbiont communities, a biogeographic trend was observed between P. ficiformis collected in Israel and Italy. Analyses of partial 18S rRNA and mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COX1) gene sequences revealed consistent genetic divergence between the violet and pink-white morphotypes of P. ficiformis. Overall, data indicated that microbial symbiont communities were more similar in genetically distinct P. ficiformis from the same location, than genetically similar P. ficiformis from distant locations. PMID:25346728

  1. Biogeography rather than association with cyanobacteria structures symbiotic microbial communities in the marine sponge Petrosia ficiformis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burgsdorf, Ilia; Erwin, Patrick M; López-Legentil, Susanna; Cerrano, Carlo; Haber, Markus; Frenk, Sammy; Steindler, Laura

    2014-01-01

    The sponge Petrosia ficiformis is ubiquitous in the Mediterranean Sea and Eastern Atlantic Ocean, hosting a diverse assemblage of bacteria, including, in illuminated sites, cyanobacteria. Two closely related sponge color morphs have been described, one inside caves and at their entrance (white/pink), and one on the rocky cliffs (violet). The presence of the different morphs and their ubiquity in the Mediterranean (from North-West to South-East) provides an opportunity to examine which factors mostly affect the associated microbial communities in this species: (i) presence of phototrophic symbionts or (ii) biogeography. 16S rRNA gene tag pyrosequencing data of the microbial communities revealed that Chloroflexi, Gammaproteobacteria, and Acidobacteria dominated the bacterial communities of all sponges analyzed. Chlorophyll a content, TEM observations and DNA sequence data confirmed the presence of the cyanobacterium Synechococcus feldmannii in violet and pink morphs of P. ficiformis and their absence in white color morphs. Rather than cyanobacterial symbionts (i.e., color morphs) accounting for variability in microbial symbiont communities, a biogeographic trend was observed between P. ficiformis collected in Israel and Italy. Analyses of partial 18S rRNA and mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COX1) gene sequences revealed consistent genetic divergence between the violet and pink-white morphotypes of P. ficiformis. Overall, data indicated that microbial symbiont communities were more similar in genetically distinct P. ficiformis from the same location, than genetically similar P. ficiformis from distant locations.

  2. Evolutionary adaptation of phenotypic plasticity in a synthetic microbial system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tans, Sander

    2010-03-01

    While phenotypic plasticity -the capability to respond to the environment- is vital to organisms, tests of its adaptation have remained indecisive because constraints and selection in variable environments are unknown and entangled. We show that one can determine the phenotype-fitness landscape that specifies selection on plasticity, by uncoupling the environmental cue and stress in a genetically engineered microbial system. Evolutionary trajectories revealed genetic constraints in a regulatory protein, which imposed cross-environment trade-offs that favored specialization. However, depending on the synchronicity and amplitude of the applied cue and stress variations, adaptation could break constraints, resolve trade-offs, and evolve optimal phenotypes that exhibit qualitatively altered (inverse) responses to the cue. Our results provide a first step to explain the adaptive origins of complex behavior in heterogeneous environments.

  3. Whole-Genome Sequencing in Microbial Forensic Analysis of Gamma-Irradiated Microbial Materials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broomall, Stacey M; Ait Ichou, Mohamed; Krepps, Michael D; Johnsky, Lauren A; Karavis, Mark A; Hubbard, Kyle S; Insalaco, Joseph M; Betters, Janet L; Redmond, Brady W; Rivers, Bryan A; Liem, Alvin T; Hill, Jessica M; Fochler, Edward T; Roth, Pierce A; Rosenzweig, C Nicole; Skowronski, Evan W; Gibbons, Henry S

    2015-11-13

    Effective microbial forensic analysis of materials used in a potential biological attack requires robust methods of morphological and genetic characterization of the attack materials in order to enable the attribution of the materials to potential sources and to exclude other potential sources. The genetic homogeneity and potential intersample variability of many of the category A to C bioterrorism agents offer a particular challenge to the generation of attributive signatures, potentially requiring whole-genome or proteomic approaches to be utilized. Currently, irradiation of mail is standard practice at several government facilities judged to be at particularly high risk. Thus, initial forensic signatures would need to be recovered from inactivated (nonviable) material. In the study described in this report, we determined the effects of high-dose gamma irradiation on forensic markers of bacterial biothreat agent surrogate organisms with a particular emphasis on the suitability of genomic DNA (gDNA) recovered from such sources as a template for whole-genome analysis. While irradiation of spores and vegetative cells affected the retention of Gram and spore stains and sheared gDNA into small fragments, we found that irradiated material could be utilized to generate accurate whole-genome sequence data on the Illumina and Roche 454 sequencing platforms. Copyright © 2016, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  4. Uncharted Microbial World: Microbes and Their Activities in the Environment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Harwood, Caroline; Buckley, Merry.

    2007-12-31

    systems with features like clear physical boundaries, limited microbial diversity, and manipulability with the goal of understanding fundamental principles that may apply to more complex systems. A great deal of microbial genetic and phenotypic diversity remains to be explored, and the commercial and medical potential locked up in these unknowns should compel the field to move forward. Future microbiology research will build on the successes of the past using new techniques and approaches. Uncultivated microbes hold great promise for industry, medicine, and the recycling of precious resources, and research and technology must make inroads in overcoming the barriers that prevent their study. In many cases, we will no longer be able to rely on isolated, pure cultures of microorganisms, but must use communities of microorganisms, which presently are poorly understood. Indeed, community-level studies can benefit from deconstructing microbial communities and analyzing the component members separately, but this is not feasible in every system. The effects of perturbation on microbial communities also require study. Humans rely on the services of microbes in innumerable ways, but we have little or no predictive understanding of how microbial communities respond to disturbance. Research must address current limitations in detecting microscale interactions among microbes by enhancing current technologies and fostering new microscopic tools, biosensors, and gas sensors for appropriate small scales. Genomics, which has enabled great progress in microbiology research of individual species, must be applied to communities of microorganisms. This will require improved methods of DNA extraction and amplification from environmental samples and improved strategies for DNA sequence assembly. In the future, genome sequencing efforts should continue the exploration of evolutionarily diverse microbes, as well as help reveal the mechanisms by which closely related microbes evolve. Technological

  5. Towards understanding, managing and protecting microbial ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul eBodelier

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Microbial communities are at the very basis of life on earth, catalysing biogeochemical reactions driving global nutrient cycles. However, unlike for plants and animals, microbial diversity is not on the biodiversity conservation agenda. The latter, however, would imply that microbial diversity is not under any threat by anthropogenic disturbance or climate change. This maybe a misconception caused by the rudimentary knowledge we have concerning microbial diversity and its role in ecosystem functioning. This perspective paper indentifies major areas with knowledge gaps within the field of environmental microbiology that preclude a comprehension of microbial ecosystems on the level we have for plants and animals. Opportunities and challenges are pointed out to open the microbial black box and to go from descriptive to predictive microbial ecology.

  6. Toward understanding, managing, and protecting microbial ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bodelier, Paul L E

    2011-01-01

    Microbial communities are at the very basis of life on earth, catalyzing biogeochemical reactions driving global nutrient cycles. However, unlike for plants and animals, microbial diversity is not on the biodiversity-conservation agenda. The latter, however, would imply that microbial diversity is not under any threat by anthropogenic disturbance or climate change. This maybe a misconception caused by the rudimentary knowledge we have concerning microbial diversity and its role in ecosystem functioning. This perspective paper identifies major areas with knowledge gaps within the field of environmental microbiology that preclude a comprehension of microbial ecosystems on the level we have for plants and animals. Opportunities and challenges are pointed out to open the microbial black box and to go from descriptive to predictive microbial ecology.

  7. Recent patents on microbial proteases for the dairy industry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feijoo-Siota, Lucía; Blasco, Lucía; Rodríguez-Rama, José Luis; Barros-Velázquez, Jorge; Miguel, Trinidad de; Sánchez-Pérez, Angeles; Villa, Tomás G

    2014-01-01

    This paper reviews the general characteristics of exo and endopeptidases of microbial origin currently used in the milk industry. It also includes recent patents developed either to potentiate the enzymatic activity or to improve the resulting milk derivatives. The main application of these proteases is in the cheese-making industry. Although this industry preferentially uses animal rennets, and in particular genetically engineered chymosins, it also utilizes milk coagulants of microbial origin. Enzymes derived from Rhizomucor miehei, Rhizomucor pusillus and Cryphonectria parasitica are currently used to replace the conventional milk-clotting enzymes. In addition, the dairy industry uses microbial endo and exoproteases for relatively new applications, such as debittering and flavor generation in cheese, accelerated cheese ripening, manufacture of protein hydrolysates with improved functional properties, and production of enzyme-modified cheeses. Lactic acid bacteria play an essential role in these processes, hence these bacteria and the proteases they produce are currently being investigated by the dairy industry and are the subject of many of their patent applications.

  8. Theoretical and methodological studies of continuous microbial bioreactors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toda, Kiyoshi

    2003-08-01

    This article reviews most of the author's studies on process development and reactor design for continuous microbial reactions. (1) Enzyme reactions of growing and non-growing microbial cells immobilized in agar gel beads were analyzed pertaining to the effects of external and internal diffusion of substrate on reaction kinetics. (2) Experimental correlations of production rates of beta-fructosidase and acid phosphatase with dilution rate of continuous culture were simulated based on an operon model for enzyme regulation. (3) Population dynamics of an amylase-producing bacteria and their mutant were discussed in relation to enzyme productivity in a continuous culture of spore-forming bacteria. (4) Plasmid mobilization in a mixed population of donor, recipient, and helper cells was investigated in a continuous culture as a model study of accidental release of a genetically modified plasmid into a natural environment. (5) A production rate increase of up to 100-fold was achieved by cell-recycle culturing of continuous acetic acid fermentation using a filter module with a hollow fiber membrane. (6) The feasibility of a continuous surface culture for the biooxidation of organic substances was ascribed to an enhanced oxygen absorption rate in the presence of a microbial film on a liquid surface. (7) Simultaneous separation of inhibitory products using an electrodialysis module during some organic acid fermentations was effective for increasing production in a continuous culture.

  9. Metaproteomics of complex microbial communities in biogas plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heyer, Robert; Kohrs, Fabian; Reichl, Udo; Benndorf, Dirk

    2015-09-01

    Production of biogas from agricultural biomass or organic wastes is an important source of renewable energy. Although thousands of biogas plants (BGPs) are operating in Germany, there is still a significant potential to improve yields, e.g. from fibrous substrates. In addition, process stability should be optimized. Besides evaluating technical measures, improving our understanding of microbial communities involved into the biogas process is considered as key issue to achieve both goals. Microscopic and genetic approaches to analyse community composition provide valuable experimental data, but fail to detect presence of enzymes and overall metabolic activity of microbial communities. Therefore, metaproteomics can significantly contribute to elucidate critical steps in the conversion of biomass to methane as it delivers combined functional and phylogenetic data. Although metaproteomics analyses are challenged by sample impurities, sample complexity and redundant protein identification, and are still limited by the availability of genome sequences, recent studies have shown promising results. In the following, the workflow and potential pitfalls for metaproteomics of samples from full-scale BGP are discussed. In addition, the value of metaproteomics to contribute to the further advancement of microbial ecology is evaluated. Finally, synergistic effects expected when metaproteomics is combined with advanced imaging techniques, metagenomics, metatranscriptomics and metabolomics are addressed.

  10. Microbial diversity in European alpine permafrost and active layers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frey, Beat; Rime, Thomas; Phillips, Marcia; Stierli, Beat; Hajdas, Irka; Widmer, Franco; Hartmann, Martin

    2016-03-01

    Permafrost represents a largely understudied genetic resource. Thawing of permafrost with global warming will not only promote microbial carbon turnover with direct feedback on greenhouse gases, but also unlock an unknown microbial diversity. Pioneering metagenomic efforts have shed light on the permafrost microbiome in polar regions, but temperate mountain permafrost is largely understudied. We applied a unique experimental design coupled to high-throughput sequencing of ribosomal markers to characterize the microbiota at the long-term alpine permafrost study site 'Muot-da-Barba-Peider' in eastern Switzerland with an approximate radiocarbon age of 12 000 years. Compared to the active layers, the permafrost community was more diverse and enriched with members of the superphylum Patescibacteria (OD1, TM7, GN02 and OP11). These understudied phyla with no cultured representatives proposedly feature small streamlined genomes with reduced metabolic capabilities, adaptations to anaerobic fermentative metabolisms and potential ectosymbiotic lifestyles. The permafrost microbiota was also enriched with yeasts and lichenized fungi known to harbour various structural and functional adaptation mechanisms to survive under extreme sub-zero conditions. These data yield an unprecedented view on microbial life in temperate mountain permafrost, which is increasingly important for understanding the biological dynamics of permafrost in order to anticipate potential ecological trajectories in a warming world.

  11. Extensive microbial and functional diversity within the chicken cecal microbiome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin J Sergeant

    Full Text Available Chickens are major source of food and protein worldwide. Feed conversion and the health of chickens relies on the largely unexplored complex microbial community that inhabits the chicken gut, including the ceca. We have carried out deep microbial community profiling of the microbiota in twenty cecal samples via 16S rRNA gene sequences and an in-depth metagenomics analysis of a single cecal microbiota. We recovered 699 phylotypes, over half of which appear to represent previously unknown species. We obtained 648,251 environmental gene tags (EGTs, the majority of which represent new species. These were binned into over two-dozen draft genomes, which included Campylobacter jejuni and Helicobacter pullorum. We found numerous polysaccharide- and oligosaccharide-degrading enzymes encoding within the metagenome, some of which appeared to be part of polysaccharide utilization systems with genetic evidence for the co-ordination of polysaccharide degradation with sugar transport and utilization. The cecal metagenome encodes several fermentation pathways leading to the production of short-chain fatty acids, including some with novel features. We found a dozen uptake hydrogenases encoded in the metagenome and speculate that these provide major hydrogen sinks within this microbial community and might explain the high abundance of several genera within this microbiome, including Campylobacter, Helicobacter and Megamonas.

  12. Toward a photosynthetic microbial platform for terpenoid engineering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davies, Fiona K; Jinkerson, Robert E; Posewitz, Matthew C

    2015-03-01

    Plant terpenoids are among the most diverse group of naturally-occurring organic compounds known, and several are used in contemporary consumer products. Terpene synthase enzymes catalyze complex rearrangements of carbon skeleton precursors to yield thousands of unique chemical structures that range in size from the simplest five carbon isoprene unit to the long polymers of rubber. Such chemical diversity has established plant terpenoids as valuable commodity chemicals with applications in the pharmaceutical, neutraceutical, cosmetic, and food industries. More recently, terpenoids have received attention as a renewable alternative to petroleum-derived fuels and as the building blocks of synthetic biopolymers. However, the current plant- and petrochemical-based supplies of commodity terpenoids have major limitations. Photosynthetic microorganisms provide an opportunity to generate terpenoids in a renewable manner, employing a single consolidated host organism that is able to use solar energy, H2O and CO2 as the primary inputs for terpenoid biosynthesis. Advances in synthetic biology have seen important breakthroughs in microbial terpenoid engineering, traditionally via fermentative pathways in yeast and Escherichia coli. This review draws on the knowledge obtained from heterotrophic microbial engineering to propose strategies for the development of microbial photosynthetic platforms for industrial terpenoid production. The importance of utilizing the wealth of genetic information provided by nature to unravel the regulatory mechanisms of terpenoid biosynthesis is highlighted.

  13. Microbial co-habitation and lateral gene transfer: what transposases can tell us

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hooper, Sean D.; Mavromatis, Konstantinos; Kyrpides, Nikos C.

    2009-03-01

    Determining the habitat range for various microbes is not a simple, straightforward matter, as habitats interlace, microbes move between habitats, and microbial communities change over time. In this study, we explore an approach using the history of lateral gene transfer recorded in microbial genomes to begin to answer two key questions: where have you been and who have you been with? All currently sequenced microbial genomes were surveyed to identify pairs of taxa that share a transposase that is likely to have been acquired through lateral gene transfer. A microbial interaction network including almost 800 organisms was then derived from these connections. Although the majority of the connections are between closely related organisms with the same or overlapping habitat assignments, numerous examples were found of cross-habitat and cross-phylum connections. We present a large-scale study of the distributions of transposases across phylogeny and habitat, and find a significant correlation between habitat and transposase connections. We observed cases where phylogenetic boundaries are traversed, especially when organisms share habitats; this suggests that the potential exists for genetic material to move laterally between diverse groups via bridging connections. The results presented here also suggest that the complex dynamics of microbial ecology may be traceable in the microbial genomes.

  14. Microbial astronauts: assembling microbial communities for advanced life support systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, M S; Garland, J L; Mills, A L

    2004-02-01

    Extension of human habitation into space requires that humans carry with them many of the microorganisms with which they coexist on Earth. The ubiquity of microorganisms in close association with all living things and biogeochemical processes on Earth predicates that they must also play a critical role in maintaining the viability of human life in space. Even though bacterial populations exist as locally adapted ecotypes, the abundance of individuals in microbial species is so large that dispersal is unlikely to be limited by geographical barriers on Earth (i.e., for most environments "everything is everywhere" given enough time). This will not be true for microbial communities in space where local species richness will be relatively low because of sterilization protocols prior to launch and physical barriers between Earth and spacecraft after launch. Although community diversity will be sufficient to sustain ecosystem function at the onset, richness and evenness may decline over time such that biological systems either lose functional potential (e.g., bioreactors may fail to reduce BOD or nitrogen load) or become susceptible to invasion by human-associated microorganisms (pathogens) over time. Research at the John F. Kennedy Space Center has evaluated fundamental properties of microbial diversity and community assembly in prototype bioregenerative systems for NASA Advanced Life Support. Successional trends related to increased niche specialization, including an apparent increase in the proportion of nonculturable types of organisms, have been consistently observed. In addition, the stability of the microbial communities, as defined by their resistance to invasion by human-associated microorganisms, has been correlated to their diversity. Overall, these results reflect the significant challenges ahead for the assembly of stable, functional communities using gnotobiotic approaches, and the need to better define the basic biological principles that define ecosystem

  15. Microbial astronauts: assembling microbial communities for advanced life support systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, M. S.; Garland, J. L.; Mills, A. L.

    2004-01-01

    Extension of human habitation into space requires that humans carry with them many of the microorganisms with which they coexist on Earth. The ubiquity of microorganisms in close association with all living things and biogeochemical processes on Earth predicates that they must also play a critical role in maintaining the viability of human life in space. Even though bacterial populations exist as locally adapted ecotypes, the abundance of individuals in microbial species is so large that dispersal is unlikely to be limited by geographical barriers on Earth (i.e., for most environments "everything is everywhere" given enough time). This will not be true for microbial communities in space where local species richness will be relatively low because of sterilization protocols prior to launch and physical barriers between Earth and spacecraft after launch. Although community diversity will be sufficient to sustain ecosystem function at the onset, richness and evenness may decline over time such that biological systems either lose functional potential (e.g., bioreactors may fail to reduce BOD or nitrogen load) or become susceptible to invasion by human-associated microorganisms (pathogens) over time. Research at the John F. Kennedy Space Center has evaluated fundamental properties of microbial diversity and community assembly in prototype bioregenerative systems for NASA Advanced Life Support. Successional trends related to increased niche specialization, including an apparent increase in the proportion of nonculturable types of organisms, have been consistently observed. In addition, the stability of the microbial communities, as defined by their resistance to invasion by human-associated microorganisms, has been correlated to their diversity. Overall, these results reflect the significant challenges ahead for the assembly of stable, functional communities using gnotobiotic approaches, and the need to better define the basic biological principles that define ecosystem

  16. Rapid Prototyping of Microbial Cell Factories via Genome-scale Engineering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Si, Tong; Xiao, Han; Zhao, Huimin

    2014-01-01

    Advances in reading, writing and editing genetic materials have greatly expanded our ability to reprogram biological systems at the resolution of a single nucleotide and on the scale of a whole genome. Such capacity has greatly accelerated the cycles of design, build and test to engineer microbes for efficient synthesis of fuels, chemicals and drugs. In this review, we summarize the emerging technologies that have been applied, or are potentially useful for genome-scale engineering in microbial systems. We will focus on the development of high-throughput methodologies, which may accelerate the prototyping of microbial cell factories. PMID:25450192

  17. Versatile microbial surface-display for environmental remediation and biofuels production

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wu, Cindy H.; Mulchandani, Ashok; Chen, wilfred

    2008-02-14

    Surface display is a powerful technique that utilizes natural microbial functional components to express proteins or peptides on the cell exterior. Since the reporting of the first surface-display system in the mid-1980s, a variety of new systems have been reported for yeast, Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Non-conventional display methods are emerging, eliminating the generation of genetically modified microorganisms. Cells with surface display are used as biocatalysts, biosorbents and biostimulants. Microbial cell-surface display has proven to be extremely important for numerous applications ranging from combinatorial library screening and protein engineering to bioremediation and biofuels production.

  18. Microbial communities in the human small intestine: coupling diversity to metagenomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Booijink, Carien C G M; Zoetendal, Erwin G; Kleerebezem, Michiel; de Vos, Willem M

    2007-06-01

    The gastrointestinal tract is the main site where the conversion and absorption of food components takes place. The host-derived physiological processes and the residing microorganisms, especially in the small intestine, contribute to this nutrient supply. To circumvent sampling problems of the small intestine, several model systems have been developed to study microbial diversity and functionality in the small intestine. In addition, metagenomics offers novel possibilities to gain insight into the genetic potential and functional properties of these microbial communities. Here, an overview is presented of the most recent insights into the diversity and functionality of the microorganisms in the human gastrointestinal tract, with a focus on the small intestine.

  19. Engineering PQS biosynthesis pathway for enhancement of bioelectricity production in Pseudomonas aeruginosa microbial fuel cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Victor Bochuan; Chua, Song-Lin; Cao, Bin;

    2013-01-01

    . aeruginosa strain that produces higher concentrations of phenazines under anaerobic conditions by over-expressing the PqsE effector in a PQS negative ΔpqsC mutant. The engineered strain exhibited an improved electrical performance in microbial fuel cells (MFCs) and potentiostat-controlled electrochemical...... cells with an approximate five-fold increase of maximum current density relative to the parent strain. Electrochemical analysis showed that the current increase correlates with an over-synthesis of phenazines. These results therefore demonstrate that targeting microbial cell-to-cell communication...... by genetic engineering is a suitable technique to improve power output of bioelectrochemical systems....

  20. Rapid prototyping of microbial cell factories via genome-scale engineering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Si, Tong; Xiao, Han; Zhao, Huimin

    2015-11-15

    Advances in reading, writing and editing genetic materials have greatly expanded our ability to reprogram biological systems at the resolution of a single nucleotide and on the scale of a whole genome. Such capacity has greatly accelerated the cycles of design, build and test to engineer microbes for efficient synthesis of fuels, chemicals and drugs. In this review, we summarize the emerging technologies that have been applied, or are potentially useful for genome-scale engineering in microbial systems. We will focus on the development of high-throughput methodologies, which may accelerate the prototyping of microbial cell factories.

  1. DESM: portal for microbial knowledge exploration systems

    KAUST Repository

    Salhi, Adil

    2015-11-05

    Microorganisms produce an enormous variety of chemical compounds. It is of general interest for microbiology and biotechnology researchers to have means to explore information about molecular and genetic basis of functioning of different microorganisms and their ability for bioproduction. To enable such exploration, we compiled 45 topic-specific knowledgebases (KBs) accessible through DESM portal (www.cbrc.kaust.edu.sa/desm). The KBs contain information derived through text-mining of PubMed information and complemented by information data-mined from various other resources (e.g. ChEBI, Entrez Gene, GO, KOBAS, KEGG, UniPathways, BioGrid). All PubMed records were indexed using 4 538 278 concepts from 29 dictionaries, with 1 638 986 records utilized in KBs. Concepts used are normalized whenever possible. Most of the KBs focus on a particular type of microbial activity, such as production of biocatalysts or nutraceuticals. Others are focused on specific categories of microorganisms, e.g. streptomyces or cyanobacteria. KBs are all structured in a uniform manner and have a standardized user interface. Information exploration is enabled through various searches. Users can explore statistically most significant concepts or pairs of concepts, generate hypotheses, create interactive networks of associated concepts and export results. We believe DESM will be a useful complement to the existing resources to benefit microbiology and biotechnology research.

  2. Molecular Technique to Understand Deep Microbial Diversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaishampayan, Parag A.; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri J.

    2012-01-01

    Current sequencing-based and DNA microarray techniques to study microbial diversity are based on an initial PCR (polymerase chain reaction) amplification step. However, a number of factors are known to bias PCR amplification and jeopardize the true representation of bacterial diversity. PCR amplification of the minor template appears to be suppressed by the exponential amplification of the more abundant template. It is widely acknowledged among environmental molecular microbiologists that genetic biosignatures identified from an environment only represent the most dominant populations. The technological bottleneck has overlooked the presence of the less abundant minority population, and underestimated their role in the ecosystem maintenance. To generate PCR amplicons for subsequent diversity analysis, bacterial l6S rRNA genes are amplified by PCR using universal primers. Two distinct PCR regimes are employed in parallel: one using normal and the other using biotinlabeled universal primers. PCR products obtained with biotin-labeled primers are mixed with streptavidin-labeled magnetic beads and selectively captured in the presence of a magnetic field. Less-abundant DNA templates that fail to amplify in this first round of PCR amplification are subjected to a second round of PCR using normal universal primers. These PCR products are then subjected to downstream diversity analyses such as conventional cloning and sequencing. A second round of PCR amplified the minority population and completed the deep diversity picture of the environmental sample.

  3. Exploring Subglacial Microbial Ecology (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mikucki, J.; Mitchell, A. C.; Johnson, S. S.; Grzymski, J.

    2009-12-01

    Subglacial environments were long thought to be abiotic. We now know that microbial life exists below glaciers, but know relatively little about the in situ metabolic processes they mediate and how their activity transforms the geochemistry of subglacial efflux. It has been hypothesized that subglacial systems, driven to anoxia in the presence of sufficient organic matter, will follow a continuum of redox chemistries utilizing electron acceptors with decreasing reduction potential (i.e. Fe (III), sulfate, CO2). Indeed, sulfate reduction and methanogenesis have been detected in studies of polythermal glaciers. However, it is unclear whether there is sufficient organic matter to sustain highly reducing conditions below Antarctic ice. Here we present a broad overview of the microbial ecology of subglacial ecosystems and describe the links between microbial diversity and community function in these chemically complex environments. The subglacial environment below the Taylor Glacier, Antarctica provides an example where biogeochemical measurements made on subglacial efflux can inform specific mechanisms of microbial metabolism. We have tested the validity of these mechanisms using environmental genomic surveys and biogeochemical measurements of subglacial fluids to describe an active community that cycles iron and sulfur below Taylor Glacier. Examples include the incorporation of radiolabeled bicarbonate by cells in the outflow and detection of functional genes responsible for CO2-fixation (i.e. RuBisCO), and isotopic composition of sulfate sulfur and oxygen in the outflow indicative of sulfate reduction with the presence of functional genes of the sulfur cycle (i.e. APS reductase). Moving forward in our exploration of subglacial ecosystems, key questions regarding microbial energetics include: 1) How microorganisms cycle mineral substrates below glaciers to gain energy for growth 2) Whether subglacial microorganisms grow syntrophically in order to metabolize iron and

  4. Multiparametric monitoring of microbial faecal pollution reveals the dominance of human contamination along the whole Danube River.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirschner, A K T; Reischer, G H; Jakwerth, S; Savio, D; Ixenmaier, S; Toth, E; Sommer, R; Mach, R L; Linke, R; Eiler, A; Kolarevic, S; Farnleitner, A H

    2017-11-01

    The microbial faecal pollution of rivers has wide-ranging impacts on a variety of human activities that rely on appropriate river water quality. Thus, detailed knowledge of the extent and origin of microbial faecal pollution is crucial for watershed management activities to maintain safe water use. In this study, the microbial faecal pollution levels were monitored by standard faecal indicator bacteria (SFIB) along a 2580 km stretch of the Danube, the world's most international river, as well as the Danube's most important tributaries. To track the origin of faecal pollution, host-associated Bacteroidetes genetic faecal marker qPCR assays for different host groups were applied in concert with SFIB. The spatial resolution analysis was followed by a time resolution analysis of faecal pollution patterns over 1 year at three selected sites. In this way, a comprehensive faecal pollution map of the total length of the Danube was created, combining substantiated information on both the extent and origin of microbial faecal pollution. Within the environmental data matrix for the river, microbial faecal pollution constituted an independent component and did not cluster with any other measured environmental parameters. Generally, midstream samples representatively depicted the microbial pollution levels at the respective river sites. However, at a few, somewhat unexpected sites, high pollution levels occurred in the lateral zones of the river while the midstream zone had good water quality. Human faecal pollution was demonstrated as the primary pollution source along the whole river, while animal faecal pollution was of minor importance. This study demonstrates that the application of host-associated genetic microbial source tracking markers in concert with the traditional concept of microbial faecal pollution monitoring based on SFIB significantly enhances the knowledge of the extent and origin of microbial faecal pollution patterns in large rivers. It constitutes a

  5. Elucidating Microbial Adaptation Dynamics via Autonomous Exposure and Sampling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grace, J. M.; Verseux, C.; Gentry, D.; Moffet, A.; Thayabaran, R.; Wong, N.; Rothschild, L.

    2013-12-01

    The adaptation of micro-organisms to their environments is a complex process of interaction between the pressures of the environment and of competition. Reducing this multifactorial process to environmental exposure in the laboratory is a common tool for elucidating individual mechanisms of evolution, such as mutation rates[Wielgoss et al., 2013]. Although such studies inform fundamental questions about the way adaptation and even speciation occur, they are often limited by labor-intensive manual techniques[Wassmann et al., 2010]. Current methods for controlled study of microbial adaptation limit the length of time, the depth of collected data, and the breadth of applied environmental conditions. Small idiosyncrasies in manual techniques can have large effects on outcomes; for example, there are significant variations in induced radiation resistances following similar repeated exposure protocols[Alcántara-Díaz et al., 2004; Goldman and Travisano, 2011]. We describe here a project under development to allow rapid cycling of multiple types of microbial environmental exposure. The system allows continuous autonomous monitoring and data collection of both single species and sampled communities, independently and concurrently providing multiple types of controlled environmental pressure (temperature, radiation, chemical presence or absence, and so on) to a microbial community in dynamic response to the ecosystem's current status. When combined with DNA sequencing and extraction, such a controlled environment can cast light on microbial functional development, population dynamics, inter- and intra-species competition, and microbe-environment interaction. The project's goal is to allow rapid, repeatable iteration of studies of both natural and artificial microbial adaptation. As an example, the same system can be used both to increase the pH of a wet soil aliquot over time while periodically sampling it for genetic activity analysis, or to repeatedly expose a culture of

  6. Microbial source tracking: a forensic technique for microbial source identification?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stapleton, Carl M; Wyer, Mark D; Kay, David; Crowther, John; McDonald, Adrian T; Walters, Martin; Gawler, Andrew; Hindle, Terry

    2007-05-01

    As the requirements of the Water Framework Directive (WFD) and the US Clean Water Act (USCWA) for the maintenance of microbiological water quality in 'protected areas' highlight, there is a growing recognition that integrated management of point and diffuse sources of microbial pollution is essential. New information on catchment microbial dynamics and, in particular, the sources of faecal indicator bacteria found in bathing and shellfish harvesting waters is a pre-requisite for the design of any 'programme of measures' at the drainage basin scale to secure and maintain compliance with existing and new health-based microbiological standards. This paper reports on a catchment-scale microbial source tracking (MST) study in the Leven Estuary drainage basin, northwest England, an area for which quantitative faecal indicator source apportionment empirical data and land use information were also collected. Since previous MST studies have been based on laboratory trials using 'manufactured' samples or analyses of spot environmental samples without the contextual microbial flux data (under high and low flow conditions) and source information, such background data are needed to evaluate the utility of MST in USCWA total maximum daily load (TMDL) assessments or WFD 'Programmes of Measures'. Thus, the operational utility of MST remains in some doubt. The results of this investigation, using genotyping of Bacteroidetes using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and male-specific ribonucleic acid coliphage (F + RNA coliphage) using hybridisation, suggest some discrimination is possible between livestock- and human-derived faecal indicator concentrations but, in inter-grade areas, the degree to which the tracer picture reflected the land use pattern and probable faecal indicator loading were less distinct. Interestingly, the MST data was more reliable on high flow samples when much of the faecal indicator flux from catchment systems occurs. Whilst a useful supplementary tool, the MST

  7. Sonoassisted microbial reduction of chromium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kathiravan, Mathur Nadarajan; Karthick, Ramalingam; Muthu, Naggapan; Muthukumar, Karuppan; Velan, Manickam

    2010-04-01

    This study presents sonoassisted microbial reduction of hexavalent chromium (Cr(VI)) using Bacillus sp. isolated from tannery effluent contaminated site. The experiments were carried out with free cells in the presence and absence of ultrasound. The optimum pH and temperature for the reduction of Cr(VI) by Bacillus sp. were found to be 7.0 and 37 degrees C, respectively. The Cr(VI) reduction was significantly influenced by the electron donors and among the various electron donors studied, glucose offered maximum reduction. The ultrasound-irradiated reduction of Cr(VI) with Bacillus sp. showed efficient Cr(VI) reduction. The percent reduction was found to increase with an increase in biomass concentration and decrease with an increase in initial concentration. The changes in the functional groups of Bacillus sp., before and after chromium reduction were observed with FTIR spectra. Microbial growth was described with Monod and Andrews model and best fit was observed with Andrews model.

  8. Synthetic microbial ecosystems for biotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pandhal, Jagroop; Noirel, Josselin

    2014-06-01

    Most highly controlled and specific applications of microorganisms in biotechnology involve pure cultures. Maintaining single strain cultures is important for industry as contaminants can reduce productivity and lead to longer "down-times" during sterilisation. However, microbes working together provide distinct advantages over pure cultures. They can undertake more metabolically complex tasks, improve efficiency and even expand applications to open systems. By combining rapidly advancing technologies with ecological theory, the use of microbial ecosystems in biotechnology will inevitably increase. This review provides insight into the use of synthetic microbial communities in biotechnology by applying the engineering paradigm of measure, model, manipulate and manufacture, and illustrate the emerging wider potential of the synthetic ecology field. Systems to improve biofuel production using microalgae are also discussed.

  9. Microbial Flocculant for Nature Soda

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Qin, Peiyong; Zhang, Tong; Chen, Cuixian

    2004-03-31

    Microbial flocculant for nature soda has been studied. Lactobacillus TRJ21, which was able to produce an excellent biopolymer flocculant for nature soda, was obtained in our lab. The microbial flocculant was mainly produced when the bacteria laid in stationary growth phase. Fructose or glucose, as carbon sources, were more favorable for the bacterial growth and flocculant production. The bacteria was able to use ammonium sulfate or Urea as nitrogen to produce flocculant, but was not able to use peptone effectively. High C/N ratio was more favorable to Lactobacillus TRJ21 growth and flocculant production than low C/N ratio. The biopolymer flocculant was mainly composed of polysaccharide and protein with a molecular weight 1.38x106 by gel permeation chromatography. It was able to be easily purified from the culture medium by acetone. Protein in the flocculant was tested for the flocculating activity ingredient by heating the flocculant.

  10. Microbial degradation of petroleum hydrocarbons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varjani, Sunita J

    2017-01-01

    Petroleum hydrocarbon pollutants are recalcitrant compounds and are classified as priority pollutants. Cleaning up of these pollutants from environment is a real world problem. Bioremediation has become a major method employed in restoration of petroleum hydrocarbon polluted environments that makes use of natural microbial biodegradation activity. Petroleum hydrocarbons utilizing microorganisms are ubiquitously distributed in environment. They naturally biodegrade pollutants and thereby remove them from the environment. Removal of petroleum hydrocarbon pollutants from environment by applying oleophilic microorganisms (individual isolate/consortium of microorganisms) is ecofriendly and economic. Microbial biodegradation of petroleum hydrocarbon pollutants employs the enzyme catalytic activities of microorganisms to enhance the rate of pollutants degradation. This article provides an overview about bioremediation for petroleum hydrocarbon pollutants. It also includes explanation about hydrocarbon metabolism in microorganisms with a special focus on new insights obtained during past couple of years. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Microbial activity at Yucca Mountain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Horn, J.M.; Meike, A.

    1995-09-25

    The U.S. Department of Energy is engaged in a suitability study for a potential geological repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, for the containment and storage of commercially generated spent fuel and defense high-level nuclear waste. There is growing recognition of the role that biotic factors could play in this repository, either directly through microbially induced corrosion (MIC), or indirectly by altering the chemical environment or contributing to the transport of radionuclides. As a first step toward describing and predicting these processes, a workshop was held on April 10-12, 1995, in Lafayette, California. The immediate aims of the workshop were: (1) To identify microbially related processes relevant to the design of a radioactive waste repository under conditions similar to those at Yucca Mountain. (2) To determine parameters that are critical to the evaluation of a disturbed subterranean environment. (3) To define the most effective means of investigating the factors thus identified.

  12. Melanoma genetics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Read, Jazlyn; Wadt, Karin A W; Hayward, Nicholas K

    2016-01-01

    Approximately 10% of melanoma cases report a relative affected with melanoma, and a positive family history is associated with an increased risk of developing melanoma. Although the majority of genetic alterations associated with melanoma development are somatic, the underlying presence...... of heritable melanoma risk genes is an important component of disease occurrence. Susceptibility for some families is due to mutation in one of the known high penetrance melanoma predisposition genes: CDKN2A, CDK4, BAP1, POT1, ACD, TERF2IP and TERT. However, despite such mutations being implicated...... in a combined total of approximately 50% of familial melanoma cases, the underlying genetic basis is unexplained for the remainder of high-density melanoma families. Aside from the possibility of extremely rare mutations in a few additional high penetrance genes yet to be discovered, this suggests a likely...

  13. In-Flight Microbial Monitor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeitlin, Nancy; Mullenix, Pamela; Wheeler, Raymond M.; Ruby, Anna Maria

    2015-01-01

    Previous research has shown that potential human pathogens have been detected on the International Space Station (ISS). New microorganisms are introduced with every exchange of crew and cargo. Microorganisms introduced to the ISS are readily transferred between crew and subsystems (i.e., ECLSS, environmental control and life support systems). Current microbial characterization methods require a culture-based enrichment of microorganisms and at least a 48-hour incubation time. This increases the microbial load while detecting only a limited number of microorganisms. The culture-based method detects approximately 1-10% of the total organisms present and provides no identification. To identify and enumerate ISS samples requires that the microbes be returned to Earth for complete analysis. Therefore, a more expedient, low-cost, inflight method of microbial detection, identification, and enumeration is needed. The RAZOR EX, a ruggedized, commercial off the shelf, real-time PCR field instrument was tested for its ability to detect microorganisms at low concentrations within one hour. Escherichia coli, Salmonella enterica Typhimurium, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa were detected at low levels using real-time DNA amplification. Total heterotrophic counts could also be detected using a 16S gene marker that can identify up to 98% of all bacteria. To reflect viable cells found in the samples, RNA was also detectable using a modified, single-step reverse transcription reaction.

  14. Genomics and marine microbial ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pedrós-Alió, Carlos

    2006-09-01

    Genomics has brought about a revolution in all fields of biology. Before the development of microbial ecology in the 1970s, microbes were not even considered in marine ecological studies. Today we know that half of the total primary production of the planet must be credited to microorganisms. This and other discoveries have changed dramatically the perspective and the focus of marine microbial ecology. The application of genomics-based approaches has provided new challenges and has allowed the discovery of novel functions, an appreciation of the great diversity of microorganisms, and the introduction of controversial ideas regarding the concepts of species, genome, and niche. Nevertheless, thorough knowledge of the traditional disciplines of biology is necessary to explore the possibilities arising from these new insights. This work reviews the different genomic techniques that can be applied to marine microbial ecology, including both sequencing of the complete genomes of microorganisms and metagenomics, which, in turn, can be complemented with the study of mRNAs (transcriptomics) and proteins (proteomics). The example of proteorhodopsin illustrates the type of information that can be gained from these approaches. A genomics perspective constitutes a map that will allow microbiologists to focus their research on potentially more productive aspects.

  15. Simplifying Microbial Electrosynthesis Reactor Design

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cloelle G.S. Giddings

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Microbial electrosynthesis, an artificial form of photosynthesis, can efficiently convert carbon dioxide into organic commodities; however, this process has only previously been demonstrated in reactors that have features likely to be a barrier to scale-up. Therefore, the possibility of simplifying reactor design by both eliminating potentiostatic control of the cathode and removing the membrane separating the anode and cathode was investigated with biofilms of Sporomusa ovata, which reduces carbon dioxide to acetate. In traditional ‘H-cell’ reactors, where the anode and cathode chambers were separated with a proton-selective membrane, the rates and columbic efficiencies of microbial electrosynthesis remained high when electron delivery at the cathode was powered with a direct current power source rather than with a poteniostat-poised cathode utilized in previous studies. A membrane-less reactor with a direct-current power source with the cathode and anode positioned to avoid oxygen exposure at the cathode, retained high rates of acetate production as well as high columbic and energetic efficiencies. The finding that microbial electrosynthesis is feasible without a membrane separating the anode from the cathode, coupled with a direct current power source supplying the energy for electron delivery, is expected to greatly simplify future reactor design and lower construction costs.

  16. Genetic Testing for ALS

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Involved Donate Familial Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (FALS) and Genetic Testing By Deborah Hartzfeld, MS, CGC, Certified Genetic Counselor ... in your area, please visit www.nsgc.org . Genetic Testing Genetic testing can help determine the cause of ...

  17. Genetic Science Learning Center

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Mouse Party on Learn.Genetics.utah.edu Students doing the Tree of Genetic Traits activity Learn.Genetics is one of the most widely used science education websites in the world The Community Genetics ...

  18. Assembling networks of microbial genomes using linear programming

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Holloway Catherine

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Microbial genomes exhibit complex sets of genetic affinities due to lateral genetic transfer. Assessing the relative contributions of parent-to-offspring inheritance and gene sharing is a vital step in understanding the evolutionary origins and modern-day function of an organism, but recovering and showing these relationships is a challenging problem. Results We have developed a new approach that uses linear programming to find between-genome relationships, by treating tables of genetic affinities (here, represented by transformed BLAST e-values as an optimization problem. Validation trials on simulated data demonstrate the effectiveness of the approach in recovering and representing vertical and lateral relationships among genomes. Application of the technique to a set comprising Aquifex aeolicus and 75 other thermophiles showed an important role for large genomes as 'hubs' in the gene sharing network, and suggested that genes are preferentially shared between organisms with similar optimal growth temperatures. We were also able to discover distinct and common genetic contributors to each sequenced representative of genus Pseudomonas. Conclusions The linear programming approach we have developed can serve as an effective inference tool in its own right, and can be an efficient first step in a more-intensive phylogenomic analysis.

  19. Plant diversity reduces the effect of multiple heavy metal pollution on soil enzyme activities and microbial community structure

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yang GAO; Chiyuan MIAO; Jun XIA; Liang MAO; Yafeng WANG; Pei ZHOU

    2012-01-01

    It is unclear whether certain plant species and plant diversity could reduce the impacts of multiple heavy metal pollution on soil microbial structure and soil enzyme activities. Random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) was used to analyze the genetic diversity and microbial similarity in planted and unplanted soil under combined cadmium (Cd) and lead (Pb) pollution. A metal hyper- accumulator, Brassica juncea, and a common plant, Festuca arundinacea Schreb, were used in this research. The results showed that microorganism quantity in planted soil significantly increased, compared with that in unplanted soil with Cd and Pb pollution. The order of microbial community sensitivity in response to Cd and Pb stress was as follows: actinomycetes 〉 bacteria 〉 fungi. Respiration, phosphatase, urease and dehydrogenase activity were significantly inhibited due to Cd and Pb stress. Compared with unplanted soil, planted soils have frequently been reported to have higher rates of microbial activity due to the presence of additional surfaces for microbial colonization and organic compounds released by the plant roots. Two coexisting plants could increase microbe population and the activity of phosphatases, dehydrogenases and, in particular, ureases. Soil enzyme activity was higher in B. juncea phytoremediated soil than in F. arundinacea planted soil in this study. Heavy metal pollution decreased the richness of the soil microbial community, but plant diversity increased DNA sequence diversity and maintained DNA sequence diversity at highlevels. The genetic polymorphism under heavy metal stress was higher in B. juncea phytoremediated soil than in F. arundinacea planted soil.

  20. Specialized microbial databases for inductive exploration of microbial genome sequences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cabau Cédric

    2005-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The enormous amount of genome sequence data asks for user-oriented databases to manage sequences and annotations. Queries must include search tools permitting function identification through exploration of related objects. Methods The GenoList package for collecting and mining microbial genome databases has been rewritten using MySQL as the database management system. Functions that were not available in MySQL, such as nested subquery, have been implemented. Results Inductive reasoning in the study of genomes starts from "islands of knowledge", centered around genes with some known background. With this concept of "neighborhood" in mind, a modified version of the GenoList structure has been used for organizing sequence data from prokaryotic genomes of particular interest in China. GenoChore http://bioinfo.hku.hk/genochore.html, a set of 17 specialized end-user-oriented microbial databases (including one instance of Microsporidia, Encephalitozoon cuniculi, a member of Eukarya has been made publicly available. These databases allow the user to browse genome sequence and annotation data using standard queries. In addition they provide a weekly update of searches against the world-wide protein sequences data libraries, allowing one to monitor annotation updates on genes of interest. Finally, they allow users to search for patterns in DNA or protein sequences, taking into account a clustering of genes into formal operons, as well as providing extra facilities to query sequences using predefined sequence patterns. Conclusion This growing set of specialized microbial databases organize data created by the first Chinese bacterial genome programs (ThermaList, Thermoanaerobacter tencongensis, LeptoList, with two different genomes of Leptospira interrogans and SepiList, Staphylococcus epidermidis associated to related organisms for comparison.

  1. Looking for Darwin's footprints in the microbial world

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shapiro, B. Jesse; David, Lawrence A.; Friedman, Jonathan; Alm, Eric J.

    2009-03-30

    As we observe the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin's birthday, microbiologists interested in the application of Darwin's ideas to the microscopic world have a lot to celebrate: an emerging picture of the (mostly microbial) Tree of Life at ever-increasing resolution, an understanding of horizontal gene transfer as a driving force in the evolution of microbes, and thousands of complete genome sequences to help formulate and refine our theories. At the same time, quantitative models of the microevolutionary processes shaping microbial populations remain just out of reach, a point that is perhaps most dramatically illustrated by the lack of consensus on how (or even whether) to define bacterial species. We summarize progress and prospects in bacterial population genetics, with an emphasis on detecting the footprint of positive Darwinian selection in microbial genomes.

  2. Marine Microbial Mats and the Search for Evidence of Life in Deep Time and Space

    Science.gov (United States)

    Des Marais, David J.

    2011-01-01

    Cyanobacterial mats in extensive seawater evaporation ponds at Guerrero Negro, Baja California, Mexico, have been excellent subjects for microbial ecology research. The studies reviewed here have documented the steep and rapidly changing environmental gradients experienced by mat microorganisms and the very high rates of biogeochemical processes that they maintained. Recent genetic studies have revealed an enormous diversity of bacteria as well as the spatial distribution of Bacteria, Archaea and Eukarya. These findings, together with emerging insights into the intimate interactions between these diverse populations, have contributed substantially to our understanding of the origins, environmental impacts, and biosignatures of photosynthetic microbial mats. The biosignatures (preservable cells, sedimentary fabrics, organic compounds, minerals, stable isotope patterns, etc.) potentially can serve as indicators of past life on early Earth. They also can inform our search for evidence of any life on Mars. Mars exploration has revealed evidence of evaporite deposits and thermal spring deposits; similar deposits on Earth once hosted ancient microbial mat ecosystems.

  3. The microbial ocean from genomes to biomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeLong, Edward F

    2009-05-14

    Numerically, microbial species dominate the oceans, yet their population dynamics, metabolic complexity and synergistic interactions remain largely uncharted. A full understanding of life in the ocean requires more than knowledge of marine microbial taxa and their genome sequences. The latest experimental techniques and analytical approaches can provide a fresh perspective on the biological interactions within marine ecosystems, aiding in the construction of predictive models that can interrelate microbial dynamics with the biogeochemical matter and energy fluxes that make up the ocean ecosystem.

  4. Responsiveness of cardiometabolic-related microbiota to diet is influenced by host genetics

    OpenAIRE

    O’Connor, Annalouise; Quizon, Pamela M.; Albright, Jody E.; Lin, Fred T.; Brian J Bennett

    2014-01-01

    Intestinal microbial community structure is driven by host genetics in addition to environmental factors such as diet. In comparison with environmental influences, the effect of host genetics on intestinal microbiota, and how host-driven differences alter host metabolism is unclear. Additionally, the interaction between host genetics and diet, and the impact on the intestinal microbiome and possible down-stream effect on host metabolism is not fully understood, but represents another aspects ...

  5. MATHEMATICAL MODEL OF THE MICROBIAL FLOODING

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lei Guang-lun; Zhang Zhong-zhi; Chen Yue-ming

    2003-01-01

    On the basis of growth kinetics of microorganism and the principle of material balance, equations were derived to describe microbial growth, nutrient consumption, metabolites production and their transport in formation. The changes in porosity, permeability, oil viscosity and capillary force were also described as the main facturs of microbial flooding. For reservoirs with black oil properties, three-dimensional three-phase mathematical models with the cosidaration of multi-microbial components were established to depict microbial flooding oil. With this model, calculated results are in good agreement with experimental data.

  6. A microbial perspective of human developmental biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charbonneau, Mark R; Blanton, Laura V; DiGiulio, Daniel B; Relman, David A; Lebrilla, Carlito B; Mills, David A; Gordon, Jeffrey I

    2016-07-07

    When most people think of human development, they tend to consider only human cells and organs. Yet there is another facet that involves human-associated microbial communities. A microbial perspective of human development provides opportunities to refine our definitions of healthy prenatal and postnatal growth and to develop innovative strategies for disease prevention and treatment. Given the dramatic changes in lifestyles and disease patterns that are occurring with globalization, we issue a call for the establishment of 'human microbial observatories' designed to examine microbial community development in birth cohorts representing populations with diverse anthropological characteristics, including those undergoing rapid change.

  7. [Genetic amniocentesis].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Violante Díaz, M; Carrillo Hinojosa, M; García Necoechea, M P; Escobedo Aguirre, F; Lowenberg Favela, E; Ahued Ahued, J R

    1989-04-01

    179 patients were studied by genetic amniocentesis (GA) in sessions of 3 punctures each. This was done in order to follow a prenatal diagnosis (PD) program and study amniotic fluid at the Hospital Regional 20 de Novembre (ISSSTE) between May 1983 and December 1987. The parameters taken were: age, indications, number of sessions, number punctures, echosonographic studies for gestational age, placental insertion, punction site, amniotic fluid volume, blood contamination, failures and handling of the patient. A low incidence of abortion is reported. We don't have cases of dripping of amniotic fluid or transvaginal haemorrhage. Multiple insertion of the needle and placental or vessel lesions of the cord, as causes of a fetal death are still argued if we have in mind avoiding chances; we didn't have those complications in our cases. The percent is low if there are not previous spontaneous abortions. 79% of the amniotic fluid samples were sent between the 15th and 17th weeks of pregnancy. For alpha fetus protein determination 12 and for biochemical studies 1, specially for beta-galactosidase level. This was done at the Biomedical Investigation Institute of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (in parents with generalized gangliosidosis GM1). Even though results were good, the technique has still risks and complications. An ultrasonic study of the procedures made by physicians with trustable experience is needed. Our country has the need to create more Prenatal Genetic Diagnosis Centers.

  8. Microbial Cretaceous park: biodiversity of microbial fossils entrapped in amber

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martín-González, Ana; Wierzchos, Jacek; Gutiérrez, Juan C.; Alonso, Jesús; Ascaso, Carmen

    2009-05-01

    Microorganisms are the most ancient cells on this planet and they include key phyla for understanding cell evolution and Earth history, but, unfortunately, their microbial records are scarce. Here, we present a critical review of fossilized prokaryotic and eukaryotic microorganisms entrapped in Cretaceous ambers (but not exclusively from this geological period) obtained from deposits worldwide. Microbiota in ambers are rather diverse and include bacteria, fungi, and protists. We comment on the most important microbial records from the last 25 years, although it is not an exhaustive bibliographic compilation. The most frequently reported eukaryotic microfossils are shells of amoebae and protists with a cell wall or a complex cortex. Likewise, diverse dormant stages (palmeloid forms, resting cysts, spores, etc.) are abundant in ambers. Besides, viral and protist pathogens have been identified inside insects entrapped in amber. The situation regarding filamentous bacteria and fungi is quite confusing because in some cases, the same record was identified consecutively as a member of these phylogenetically distant groups. To avoid these identification errors in the future, we propose to apply a more resolute microscopic and analytical method in amber studies. Also, we discuss the most recent findings about ancient DNA repair and bacterial survival in remote substrates, which support the real possibility of ancient DNA amplification and bacterial resuscitation from Cretaceous resins.

  9. Flat laminated microbial mat communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franks, Jonathan; Stolz, John F.

    2009-10-01

    Flat laminated microbial mats are complex microbial ecosystems that inhabit a wide range of environments (e.g., caves, iron springs, thermal springs and pools, salt marshes, hypersaline ponds and lagoons, methane and petroleum seeps, sea mounts, deep sea vents, arctic dry valleys). Their community structure is defined by physical (e.g., light quantity and quality, temperature, density and pressure) and chemical (e.g., oxygen, oxidation/reduction potential, salinity, pH, available electron acceptors and donors, chemical species) parameters as well as species interactions. The main primary producers may be photoautotrophs (e.g., cyanobacteria, purple phototrophs, green phototrophs) or chemolithoautophs (e.g., colorless sulfur oxidizing bacteria). Anaerobic phototrophy may predominate in organic rich environments that support high rates of respiration. These communities are dynamic systems exhibiting both spatial and temporal heterogeneity. They are characterized by steep gradients with microenvironments on the submillimeter scale. Diel oscillations in the physical-chemical profile (e.g., oxygen, hydrogen sulfide, pH) and species distribution are typical for phototroph-dominated communities. Flat laminated microbial mats are often sites of robust biogeochemical cycling. In addition to well-established modes of metabolism for phototrophy (oxygenic and non-oxygenic), respiration (both aerobic and anaerobic), and fermentation, novel energetic pathways have been discovered (e.g., nitrate reduction couple to the oxidation of ammonia, sulfur, or arsenite). The application of culture-independent techniques (e.g., 16S rRNA clonal libraries, metagenomics), continue to expand our understanding of species composition and metabolic functions of these complex ecosystems.

  10. Microbial Regulation in Gorgonian Corals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura D. Mydlarz

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Gorgonian corals possess many novel natural products that could potentially mediate coral-bacterial interactions. Since many bacteria use quorum sensing (QS signals to facilitate colonization of host organisms, regulation of prokaryotic cell-to-cell communication may represent an important bacterial control mechanism. In the present study, we examined extracts of twelve species of Caribbean gorgonian corals, for mechanisms that regulate microbial colonization, such as antibacterial activity and QS regulatory activity. Ethanol extracts of gorgonians collected from Puerto Rico and the Florida Keys showed a range of both antibacterial and QS activities using a specific Pseudomonas aeruginosa QS reporter, sensitive to long chain AHLs and a short chain N-acylhomoserine lactones (AHL biosensor, Chromobacterium violaceium. Overall, the gorgonian corals had higher antimicrobial activity against non-marine strains when compared to marine strains. Pseudopterogorgia americana, Pseusopterogorgia acerosa, and Pseudoplexuara flexuosa had the highest QS inhibitory effect. Interestingly, Pseudoplexuara porosa extracts stimulated QS activity with a striking 17-fold increase in signal. The stimulation of QS by P. porosa or other elements of the holobiont may encourage colonization or recruitment of specific microbial species. Overall, these results suggest the presence of novel stimulatory QS, inhibitory QS and bactericidal compounds in gorgonian corals. A better understanding of these compounds may reveal insight into coral-microbial ecology and whether a therapeutic potential exists.

  11. Designing the Microbial Research Commons

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Uhlir, Paul F. [Board on Research Data and Information Policy and Global Affairs, Washington, DC (United States)

    2011-10-01

    Recent decades have witnessed an ever-increasing range and volume of digital data. All elements of the pillars of science--whether observation, experiment, or theory and modeling--are being transformed by the continuous cycle of generation, dissemination, and use of factual information. This is even more so in terms of the re-using and re-purposing of digital scientific data beyond the original intent of the data collectors, often with dramatic results. We all know about the potential benefits and impacts of digital data, but we are also aware of the barriers, the challenges in maximizing the access, and use of such data. There is thus a need to think about how a data infrastructure can enhance capabilities for finding, using, and integrating information to accelerate discovery and innovation. How can we best implement an accessible, interoperable digital environment so that the data can be repeatedly used by a wide variety of users in different settings and with different applications? With this objective: to use the microbial communities and microbial data, literature, and the research materials themselves as a test case, the Board on Research Data and Information held an International Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons at the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, DC on 8-9 October 2009. The symposium addressed topics such as models to lower the transaction costs and support access to and use of microbiological materials and digital resources from the perspective of publicly funded research, public-private interactions, and developing country concerns. The overall goal of the symposium was to stimulate more research and implementation of improved legal and institutional models for publicly funded research in microbiology.

  12. Hydrogen production from microbial strains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harwood, Caroline S; Rey, Federico E

    2012-09-18

    The present invention is directed to a method of screening microbe strains capable of generating hydrogen. This method involves inoculating one or more microbes in a sample containing cell culture medium to form an inoculated culture medium. The inoculated culture medium is then incubated under hydrogen producing conditions. Once incubating causes the inoculated culture medium to produce hydrogen, microbes in the culture medium are identified as candidate microbe strains capable of generating hydrogen. Methods of producing hydrogen using one or more of the microbial strains identified as well as the hydrogen producing strains themselves are also disclosed.

  13. Method for analyzing microbial communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Jizhong [Oak Ridge, TN; Wu, Liyou [Oak Ridge, TN

    2010-07-20

    The present invention provides a method for quantitatively analyzing microbial genes, species, or strains in a sample that contains at least two species or strains of microorganisms. The method involves using an isothermal DNA polymerase to randomly and representatively amplify genomic DNA of the microorganisms in the sample, hybridizing the resultant polynucleotide amplification product to a polynucleotide microarray that can differentiate different genes, species, or strains of microorganisms of interest, and measuring hybridization signals on the microarray to quantify the genes, species, or strains of interest.

  14. Microbial transformations of isocupressic acid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, S J; Rosazza, J P

    1998-07-01

    Microbial transformations of the labdane-diterpene isocupressic acid (1) with different microorganisms yielded several oxygenated metabolites that were isolated and characterized by MS and NMR spectroscopic analyses. Nocardia aurantia (ATCC 12674) catalyzed the cleavage of the 13,14-double bond to yield a new nor-labdane metabolite, 2. Cunninghamella elegans (-) (NRRL 1393) gave 7beta-hydroxyisocupressic acid (3) and labda-7,13(E)-diene-6beta,15, 17-triol-19-oic acid (4), and Mucor mucedo (ATCC 20094) gave 2alpha-hydroxyisocupressic acid (5) and labda-8(17),14-diene-2alpha, 13-diol-19-oic acid (6).

  15. From cultured to uncultured genome sequences: metagenomics and modeling microbial ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garza, Daniel R; Dutilh, Bas E

    2015-11-01

    Microorganisms and the viruses that infect them are the most numerous biological entities on Earth and enclose its greatest biodiversity and genetic reservoir. With strength in their numbers, these microscopic organisms are major players in the cycles of energy and matter that sustain all life. Scientists have only scratched the surface of this vast microbial world through culture-dependent methods. Recent developments in generating metagenomes, large random samples of nucleic acid sequences isolated directly from the environment, are providing comprehensive portraits of the composition, structure, and functioning of microbial communities. Moreover, advances in metagenomic analysis have created the possibility of obtaining complete or nearly complete genome sequences from uncultured microorganisms, providing important means to study their biology, ecology, and evolution. Here we review some of the recent developments in the field of metagenomics, focusing on the discovery of genetic novelty and on methods for obtaining uncultured genome sequences, including through the recycling of previously published datasets. Moreover we discuss how metagenomics has become a core scientific tool to characterize eco-evolutionary patterns of microbial ecosystems, thus allowing us to simultaneously discover new microbes and study their natural communities. We conclude by discussing general guidelines and challenges for modeling the interactions between uncultured microorganisms and viruses based on the information contained in their genome sequences. These models will significantly advance our understanding of the functioning of microbial ecosystems and the roles of microbes in the environment.

  16. Genetic engineering of microorganisms for biodiesel production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Hui; Wang, Qun; Shen, Qi; Zhan, Jumei; Zhao, Yuhua

    2013-01-01

    Biodiesel, as one type of renewable energy, is an ideal substitute for petroleum-based diesel fuel and is usually made from triacylglycerides by transesterification with alcohols. Biodiesel production based on microbial fermentation aiming to establish more efficient, less-cost and sustainable biodiesel production strategies is under current investigation by various start-up biotechnology companies and research centers. Genetic engineering plays a key role in the transformation of microbes into the desired cell factories with high efficiency of biodiesel production. Here, we present an overview of principal microorganisms used in the microbial biodiesel production and recent advances in metabolic engineering for the modification required. Overexpression or deletion of the related enzymes for de novo synthesis of biodiesel is highlighted with relevant examples.

  17. GENETIC AND NON-GENETIC PARAMETER ESTIMATES OF DAIRY CATTLE IN ETHIOPIA: A REVIEW

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. TESFA

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Ethiopia is endowed with diverse ecosystems inhabited by an abundant diversity of animal, plant and microbial genetic resources due to the availability of diverse agro-ecology. The productivity of any species depends largely on their reproductive performance. Reproduction is an indicator of reproductive efficiency and the rate of genetic progress in both selection and crossbreeding programs. Reproductive performance does not usually refer to a single trait, but to a combination of many traits and is an indicator of reproductive efficiency and the rate of genetic progress. The main indicators of reproductive performance those are reported by many authors are age at first service, age at first calving, calving interval, days open and number of services per conception. The non-genetic factors like sex of calf, season, year, and parity had significant effect on reproductive performance traits. Knowledge on these factors and their influence on cattle performance are important in management and selection decisions. Development of breeding objectives and effective genetic improvement programs require knowledge of the genetic variation among economically important traits and accurate estimates of heritability, repeatability and genetic correlations of these traits. The estimates of genetic parameters are helpful in determining the method of selection to predict direct and correlated response to selection, choosing a breeding system to be adopted for future improvement as well as genetic gains. The reproductive performance of Ethiopian indigenous and exotic breeds producing in the country is low due to various environmental factors and absence of integrated record on the sector that leads a biased result and recommendations of the genetic parameter estimates. Selection and designing of breeding programs for improving the production and productivity of indigenous breed through keeping their native potentials should be based on the results obtained from

  18. Isolation and Characteristics of a Microbial Consortium for Effectively Degrading Phenanthrene

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Wang Jing; Xu Hongke; Guo Shaohui

    2007-01-01

    A microbial consortium (named W4) capable of aerobic biodegradation of solid phenanthrene as the sole source of carbon and energy was isolated by selective enrichment from petroleum-contaminated soil in the Henan oilfield,China. The strains of the consortium were identified as Sphingomonas cloacae, Rhizobium sp., Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Achromobacter xylosoxidans respectively by means of genetic methods. The major metabolites of phenanthrene were analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). The biodegradation percentage of solid phenanthrene at 200 mg/L in liquid medium after 7 days of growth was greater than 99%. The degradation of phenanthrene was compared between individual predominant strains and the microbial consortium in different treatment processes. The microbial consortium showed a significant improvement of phenanthrene degradation rates in either static or shaking culture. The degradation percentage of phenanthrene by the consortium W4 decreased to some degree when C 16 coexisted, however it was hardly affected by C30. Furthermore, the ability of consortium W4 to remediate oil sludge from the Dagang oil refinery was studied by composting; and it was found that the consortium W4 could obviously remove polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and paraffinic hydrocarbons. All the results indicated that the microbial consortium W4 had a promising application in bioremediation of oil-contaminated environments and could be potentially used in microbial enhanced oil recovery (MEOR).

  19. High-throughput screening to identify selective inhibitors of microbial sulfate reduction (and beyond)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlson, H. K.; Coates, J. D.; Deutschbauer, A. M.

    2015-12-01

    The selective perturbation of complex microbial ecosystems to predictably influence outcomes in engineered and industrial environments remains a grand challenge for geomicrobiology. In some industrial ecosystems, such as oil reservoirs, sulfate reducing microorganisms (SRM) produce hydrogen sulfide which is toxic, explosive and corrosive. Current strategies to selectively inhibit sulfidogenesis are based on non-specific biocide treatments, bio-competitive exclusion by alternative electron acceptors or sulfate-analogs which are competitive inhibitors or futile/alternative substrates of the sulfate reduction pathway. Despite the economic cost of sulfidogenesis, there has been minimal exploration of the chemical space of possible inhibitory compounds, and very little work has quantitatively assessed the selectivity of putative souring treatments. We have developed a high-throughput screening strategy to target SRM, quantitatively ranked the selectivity and potency of hundreds of compounds and identified previously unrecognized SRM selective inhibitors and synergistic interactions between inhibitors. Once inhibitor selectivity is defined, high-throughput characterization of microbial community structure across compound gradients and identification of fitness determinants using isolate bar-coded transposon mutant libraries can give insights into the genetic mechanisms whereby compounds structure microbial communities. The high-throughput (HT) approach we present can be readily applied to target SRM in diverse environments and more broadly, could be used to identify and quantify the potency and selectivity of inhibitors of a variety of microbial metabolisms. Our findings and approach are relevant for engineering environmental ecosystems and also to understand the role of natural gradients in shaping microbial niche space.

  20. The influence of flint stones on a soil microbial community in the northern Negev Desert

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haggai Wasserstrom

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available In the Negev Desert ecosystems, flint-stone cover on slopes acts as a barrier against water flow. As a result, soil moisture increases and organic matter accumulates under the stone and in the immediate surroundings, both affecting the duration of soil microbial activity. On the other hand, during the dry season (characterized by approximately 210 dew nights, flint-stone cover plays an important role in the formation of dew, which eventually trickles down beneath the stone, correspondingly enhancing biological activity. The present study examined the possible role of flint stones as hotspots for soil microbial-community activity and diversity. The results were compared with those obtained from the adjacent stone-free soils in the open spaces (OS, which served as controls. Microbial activity (respiration and biomass and functional diversity were determined by the MicroRespTM method. In addition, estimates of genetic diversity and viable counts of bacteria and fungi [colony-forming units (CFUs] were obtained. The soil was significantly wetter and contained more organic matter beneath the flint stones (BFS. As hypothesized, biological activity was enhanced under the stones, as described by CO2 evolution, microbial-community biomass functional diversity, and fungal phylogenetic diversity. BFS environments favored a greater range of catabolic functions. Taxa generally known for their stress resilience were found in the OS habitats. The results of this study elucidate the importance of flint-stone cover to soil microbial biomass, community activity, and functional diversity in the northern Negev Desert.

  1. 2010 MICROBIAL STRESS RESPONSE GORDON RESEARCH CONFERENCE, JULY 18-23, 2010

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sarah Ades

    2011-07-23

    The 2010 Gordon Research Conference on Microbial Stress Responses provides an open and exciting forum for the exchange of scientific discoveries on the remarkable mechanisms used by microbes to survive in nearly every niche on the planet. Understanding these stress responses is critical for our ability to control microbial survival, whether in the context of biotechnology, ecology, or pathogenesis. From its inception in 1994, this conference has traditionally employed a very broad definition of stress in microbial systems. Sessions will cover the major steps of stress responses from signal sensing to transcriptional regulation to the effectors that mediate responses. A wide range of stresses will be represented. Some examples include (but are not limited to) oxidative stress, protein quality control, antibiotic-induced stress and survival, envelope stress, DNA damage, and nutritional stress. The 2010 meeting will also focus on the role of stress responses in microbial communities, applied and environmental microbiology, and microbial development. This conference brings together researchers from both the biological and physical sciences investigating stress responses in medically- and environmentally relevant microbes, as well as model organisms, using cutting-edge techniques. Computational, systems-level, and biophysical approaches to exploring stress responsive circuits will be integrated throughout the sessions alongside the more traditional molecular, physiological, and genetic approaches. The broad range of excellent speakers and topics, together with the intimate and pleasant setting at Mount Holyoke College, provide a fertile ground for the exchange of new ideas and approaches.

  2. Harnessing biodiesel-producing microbes: from genetic engineering of lipase to metabolic engineering of fatty acid biosynthetic pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Jinyong; Yan, Yunjun; Madzak, Catherine; Han, Bingnan

    2017-02-01

    Microbial production routes, notably whole-cell lipase-mediated biotransformation and fatty-acids-derived biosynthesis, offer new opportunities for synthesizing biodiesel. They compare favorably to immobilized lipase and chemically catalyzed processes. Genetically modified whole-cell lipase-mediated in vitro route, together with in vivo and ex vivo microbial biosynthesis routes, constitutes emerging and rapidly developing research areas for effective production of biodiesel. This review presents recent advances in customizing microorganisms for producing biodiesel, via genetic engineering of lipases and metabolic engineering (including system regulation) of fatty-acids-derived pathways. Microbial hosts used include Escherichia coli, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Pichia pastoris and Aspergillus oryzae. These microbial cells can be genetically modified to produce lipases under different forms: intracellularly expressed, secreted or surface-displayed. They can be metabolically redesigned and systematically regulated to obtain balanced biodiesel-producing cells, as highlighted in this study. Such genetically or metabolically modified microbial cells can support not only in vitro biotransformation of various common oil feedstocks to biodiesel, but also de novo biosynthesis of biodiesel from glucose, glycerol or even cellulosic biomass. We believe that the genetically tractable oleaginous yeast Yarrowia lipolytica could be developed to an effective biodiesel-producing microbial cell factory. For this purpose, we propose several engineered pathways, based on lipase and wax ester synthase, in this promising oleaginous host.

  3. Microbial Extremophiles in Evolutionary Aspect

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pikuta, Elena V.; Hoover, Richard B.

    2007-01-01

    The microflora of the cryosphere of planet Earth provides the best analogs for life forms that might be found in the permafrost or polar ice caps of Mars, near the surface of the cometary nuclei, or in the liquid water beneath the ice crusts of icy moons of Jupiter and Saturn. For astrobiology the focus on the study alkaliphilic microorganisms was enhanced by the findings of abundant carbonates and carbonate globules rimmed with possibly biogenic magnetites in association with the putative microfossils in the ALH84001 meteorite. Although the ALH84001 "nanofossils" were to small and simple to be unambiguously recognized as biogenic, they stimulated Astrobiology research and studies of microbial extremophiles and biomarkers in ancient rocks and meteorites. Recent studies of CI and CM carbonaceous meteorites have resulted in the detection of the well-preserved mineralized remains of coccoidal and" filamentous microorganisms in cyanobacterial mats. Energy Dispersive X-ray Analysis has shown anomalous biogenic element ratios clearly indicating they are not recent biological contaminants. This paper reviews microbial extremophiles in context of their significance to Astrobiology and the evolution of life. Extremophilic microorganisms on Earth are models for life that might endure high radiation environments in the ice near the surface of comets or on the icy moons of Jupiter and Saturn and in the seafloor deep beneath the icy crusts of Europa and Enceladus.

  4. Microbial hydrolysis of steviol glycosides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renwick, A G; Tarka, S M

    2008-07-01

    A review of the role of gut microbiota in the metabolism of the steviol glycosides, stevioside and rebaudioside A, indicates that they are not absorbed intact but undergo hydrolysis by the intestinal microflora to steviol. Steviol is not metabolized by the intestinal flora and is absorbed from the intestine. The rate of hydrolysis for stevioside is greater than for rebaudioside A. Recent studies using mass spectrometry have shown that steviol-16,17-epoxide is not a microbial metabolite of steviol glycosides. Bacteroides species are primarily responsible for hydrolysis via their beta-glucosidase activity. Fecal incubation studies with both human and animal mixed flora provide similar results, and this indicates that the rat is an appropriate model for studies on steviol glycosides. Given the similarity in the microbial metabolism of stevioside and rebaudioside A with the formation of steviol as the single hydrolysis product that is absorbed from the intestinal tract, the toxicological data on stevioside are relevant to the risk assessment of rebaudioside A.

  5. Bacterial Population Genetics in a Forensic Context

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Velsko, S P

    2009-11-02

    This report addresses the recent Department of Homeland Security (DHS) call for a Phase I study to (1) assess gaps in the forensically relevant knowledge about the population genetics of eight bacterial agents of concern, (2) formulate a technical roadmap to address those gaps, and (3) identify new bioinformatics tools that would be necessary to analyze and interpret population genetic data in a forensic context. The eight organisms that were studied are B. anthracis, Y. pestis, F. tularensis, Brucella spp., E. coli O157/H7, Burkholderia mallei, Burkholderia pseudomallei, and C. botulinum. Our study focused on the use of bacterial population genetics by forensic investigators to test hypotheses about the possible provenance of an agent that was used in a crime or act of terrorism. Just as human population genetics underpins the calculations of match probabilities for human DNA evidence, bacterial population genetics determines the level of support that microbial DNA evidence provides for or against certain well-defined hypotheses about the origins of an infecting strain. Our key findings are: (1) Bacterial population genetics is critical for answering certain types of questions in a probabilistic manner, akin (but not identical) to 'match probabilities' in DNA forensics. (2) A basic theoretical framework for calculating likelihood ratios or posterior probabilities for forensic hypotheses based on microbial genetic comparisons has been formulated. This 'inference-on-networks' framework has deep but simple connections to the population genetics of mtDNA and Y-STRs in human DNA forensics. (3) The 'phylogeographic' approach to identifying microbial sources is not an adequate basis for understanding bacterial population genetics in a forensic context, and has limited utility, even for generating 'leads' with respect to strain origin. (4) A collection of genotyped isolates obtained opportunistically from international locations

  6. Tracking microbial impact on crop production

    Science.gov (United States)

    One of the benefits of no-till systems is that activity of the soil microbial community increases. Producers gain an array of improvements in their production systems due to enhanced microbial functioning. For example, corn yield can increase approximately 25% with the same inputs with more microb...

  7. Microbial Biosensors for Selective Detection of Disaccharides

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seven microbial strains were screened for their ability to detect disaccharides as components of Clark-type oxygen biosensors. Sensors responded to varying degrees to maltose, cellobiose, sucrose, and melibiose, but none responded strongly to lactose. Although microbial sensors are relatively nons...

  8. Microbial Degradation of Indole and Its Derivatives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pankaj Kumar Arora

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Indole and its derivatives, including 3-methylindole and 4-chloroindole, are environmental pollutants that are present worldwide. Microbial degradation of indole and its derivatives can occur in several aerobic and anaerobic pathways; these pathways involve different known and characterized genes. In this minireview, we summarize and explain the microbial degradation of indole, indole-3-acetic acid, 4-chloroindole, and methylindole.

  9. Uses of antimicrobial genes from microbial genome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sorek, Rotem; Rubin, Edward M.

    2013-08-20

    We describe a method for mining microbial genomes to discover antimicrobial genes and proteins having broad spectrum of activity. Also described are antimicrobial genes and their expression products from various microbial genomes that were found using this method. The products of such genes can be used as antimicrobial agents or as tools for molecular biology.

  10. [Sanitary-hygienic assessment of microbial biofertilizer].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arkhipchenko, N A; Akhtemava, G A; Lebedeva, T V; Voronina, A A; Makhan'kova, T I; Pavlova, M M; Shteĭntsaĭg, T A

    1991-10-01

    Biological treatment of sewage from pig-breeding complexes allowed to produce microbial biomass and primary sediments. The mixture of these components (1:1) after rendering harmless and drying out become the high effective biofertilizer. The results of chronic experiment on sanitary status of soil (microbial and helminthological indexes) under this biofertilizer usage are discussed, and the harmlessness of it is demonstrated.

  11. Linking questions to practices in the study of microbial pathogens: sampling bias and typing methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez-Díaz, Elena

    2009-12-01

    The importance of understanding the population genetics and evolution of microbial pathogens is increasing as a result of the spread and re-emergence of many infectious diseases and their impact for public health. In the last few years, the development of high throughput multi-gene sequence methodologies has opened new opportunities for studying pathogen populations, providing reliable and robust means for both epidemiological and evolutionary investigations. For instance, for many pathogens, multilocus sequence typing has become the "gold standard" in molecular epidemiology, allowing strain identification and discovery. However, there is a huge gap between typing a clinical collection of isolates and making inferences about their evolutionary history and population genetics. Critical issues for studying microbial pathogens such as an adequate sampling design and the appropriate selection of the genetic technique are also required, and will rely on the scale of study and the characteristics of the biological system (e.g., multi- vs. single-host pathogens and vector vs. food or air-borne pathogens). My aim here is to discuss some of these issues in more detail and illustrate how these aspects are often overlooked and easily neglected in the field. Finally, given the rapid accumulation of complete genome sequences and the increasing effort on microbiology research, it is clear that now more than ever integrative approaches bringing together epidemiology and evolutionary biology are needed for understanding the diversity of microbial pathogens.

  12. A genetic engineering approach to genetic algorithms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gero, J S; Kazakov, V

    2001-01-01

    We present an extension to the standard genetic algorithm (GA), which is based on concepts of genetic engineering. The motivation is to discover useful and harmful genetic materials and then execute an evolutionary process in such a way that the population becomes increasingly composed of useful genetic material and increasingly free of the harmful genetic material. Compared to the standard GA, it provides some computational advantages as well as a tool for automatic generation of hierarchical genetic representations specifically tailored to suit certain classes of problems.

  13. Modeling Approaches for Describing Microbial Population Heterogeneity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lencastre Fernandes, Rita

    , ethanol and biomass throughout the reactor. This work has proven that the integration of CFD and population balance models, for describing the growth of a microbial population in a spatially heterogeneous reactor, is feasible, and that valuable insight on the interplay between flow and the dynamics......Although microbial populations are typically described by averaged properties, individual cells present a certain degree of variability. Indeed, initially clonal microbial populations develop into heterogeneous populations, even when growing in a homogeneous environment. A heterogeneous microbial......) to predict distributions of certain population properties including particle size, mass or volume, and molecular weight. Similarly, PBM allow for a mathematical description of distributed cell properties within microbial populations. Cell total protein content distributions (a measure of cell mass) have been...

  14. Patterns and Scales in Gastrointestinal Microbial Ecology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rawls, John F.

    2016-01-01

    The body surfaces of humans and other animals are colonized at birth by microorganisms. The majority of microbial residents on the human body exist within gastrointestinal (GI) tract communities, where they contribute to many aspects of host biology and pathobiology. Recent technological advances have expanded our ability to perceive the membership and physiologic traits of microbial communities along the GI tract. To translate this information into a mechanistic and practical understanding of host-microbe and microbe-microbe relationships, it is necessary to recast our conceptualization of the GI tract and its resident microbial communities in ecological terms. This review depicts GI microbial ecology in the context of 2 fundamental ecological concepts: (1) the patterns of biodiversity within the GI tract and (2) the scales of time, space, and environment within which we perceive those patterns. We show how this conceptual framework can be used to integrate our existing knowledge and identify important open questions in GI microbial ecology. PMID:19457423

  15. Microbial biofilms: biosurfactants as antibiofilm agents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banat, Ibrahim M; De Rienzo, Mayri A Díaz; Quinn, Gerry A

    2014-12-01

    Current microbial inhibition strategies based on planktonic bacterial physiology have been known to have limited efficacy on the growth of biofilm communities. This problem can be exacerbated by the emergence of increasingly resistant clinical strains. All aspects of biofilm measurement, monitoring, dispersal, control, and inhibition are becoming issues of increasing importance. Biosurfactants have merited renewed interest in both clinical and hygienic sectors due to their potential to disperse microbial biofilms in addition to many other advantages. The dispersal properties of biosurfactants have been shown to rival those of conventional inhibitory agents against bacterial and yeast biofilms. This makes them suitable candidates for use in new generations of microbial dispersal agents and for use as adjuvants for existing microbial suppression or eradication strategies. In this review, we explore aspects of biofilm characteristics and examine the contribution of biologically derived surface-active agents (biosurfactants) to the disruption or inhibition of microbial biofilms.

  16. Microbial diversity drives multifunctionality in terrestrial ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delgado-Baquerizo, Manuel; Maestre, Fernando T; Reich, Peter B; Jeffries, Thomas C; Gaitan, Juan J; Encinar, Daniel; Berdugo, Miguel; Campbell, Colin D; Singh, Brajesh K

    2016-01-28

    Despite the importance of microbial communities for ecosystem services and human welfare, the relationship between microbial diversity and multiple ecosystem functions and services (that is, multifunctionality) at the global scale has yet to be evaluated. Here we use two independent, large-scale databases with contrasting geographic coverage (from 78 global drylands and from 179 locations across Scotland, respectively), and report that soil microbial diversity positively relates to multifunctionality in terrestrial ecosystems. The direct positive effects of microbial diversity were maintained even when accounting simultaneously for multiple multifunctionality drivers (climate, soil abiotic factors and spatial predictors). Our findings provide empirical evidence that any loss in microbial diversity will likely reduce multifunctionality, negatively impacting the provision of services such as climate regulation, soil fertility and food and fibre production by terrestrial ecosystems.

  17. Molecular Darwinism: the contingency of spontaneous genetic variation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arber, Werner

    2011-01-01

    The availability of spontaneously occurring genetic variants is an important driving force of biological evolution. Largely thanks to experimental investigations by microbial geneticists, we know today that several different molecular mechanisms contribute to the overall genetic variations. These mechanisms can be assigned to three natural strategies to generate genetic variants: 1) local sequence changes, 2) intragenomic reshuffling of DNA segments, and 3) acquisition of a segment of foreign DNA. In these processes, specific gene products are involved in cooperation with different nongenetic elements. Some genetic variations occur fully at random along the DNA filaments, others rather with a statistical reproducibility, although at many possible sites. We have to be aware that evolution in natural ecosystems is of higher complexity than under most laboratory conditions, not at least in view of symbiotic associations and the occurrence of horizontal gene transfer. The encountered contingency of genetic variation can possibly best ensure a long-term persistence of life under steadily changing living conditions.

  18. Microbial populations in contaminant plumes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haack, Sheridan K.; Bekins, Barbara A.

    Efficient biodegradation of subsurface contaminants requires two elements: (1) microbial populations with the necessary degradative capabilities, and (2) favorable subsurface geochemical and hydrological conditions. Practical constraints on experimental design and interpretation in both the hydrogeological and microbiological sciences have resulted in limited knowledge of the interaction between hydrogeological and microbiological features of subsurface environments. These practical constraints include: (1) inconsistencies between the scales of investigation in the hydrogeological and microbiological sciences, and (2) practical limitations on the ability to accurately define microbial populations in environmental samples. However, advances in application of small-scale sampling methods and interdisciplinary approaches to site investigations are beginning to significantly improve understanding of hydrogeological and microbiological interactions. Likewise, culture-based and molecular analyses of microbial populations in subsurface contaminant plumes have revealed significant adaptation of microbial populations to plume environmental conditions. Results of recent studies suggest that variability in subsurface geochemical and hydrological conditions significantly influences subsurface microbial-community structure. Combined investigations of site conditions and microbial-community structure provide the knowledge needed to understand interactions between subsurface microbial populations, plume geochemistry, and contaminant biodegradation. La biodégradation efficace des polluants souterrains requiert deux éléments: des populations microbiennes possédant les aptitudes nécessaires à la dégradation, et des conditions géochimiques et hydrologiques souterraines favorables. Des contraintes pratiques sur la conception et l'interprétation des expériences à la fois en microbiologie et en hydrogéologie ont conduit à une connaissance limitée des interactions entre les

  19. Microbial dysbiosis is associated with human breast cancer.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Caiyun Xuan

    Full Text Available Breast cancer affects one in eight women in their lifetime. Though diet, age and genetic predisposition are established risk factors, the majority of breast cancers have unknown etiology. The human microbiota refers to the collection of microbes inhabiting the human body. Imbalance in microbial communities, or microbial dysbiosis, has been implicated in various human diseases including obesity, diabetes, and colon cancer. Therefore, we investigated the potential role of microbiota in breast cancer by next-generation sequencing using breast tumor tissue and paired normal adjacent tissue from the same patient. In a qualitative survey of the breast microbiota DNA, we found that the bacterium Methylobacterium radiotolerans is relatively enriched in tumor tissue, while the bacterium Sphingomonas yanoikuyae is relatively enriched in paired normal tissue. The relative abundances of these two bacterial species were inversely correlated in paired normal breast tissue but not in tumor tissue, indicating that dysbiosis is associated with breast cancer. Furthermore, the total bacterial DNA load was reduced in tumor versus paired normal and healthy breast tissue as determined by quantitative PCR. Interestingly, bacterial DNA load correlated inversely with advanced disease, a finding that could have broad implications in diagnosis and staging of breast cancer. Lastly, we observed lower basal levels of antibacterial response gene expression in tumor versus healthy breast tissue. Taken together, these data indicate that microbial DNA is present in the breast and that bacteria or their components may influence the local immune microenvironment. Our findings suggest a previously unrecognized link between dysbiosis and breast cancer which has potential diagnostic and therapeutic implications.

  20. Genetics and Rheumatic Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Well with Rheumatic Disease Genetics and Rheumatic Disease Genetics and Rheumatic Disease Fast Facts Studying twins has ... 70%, and for non-identical pairs, even lower. Genetics and ankylosing spondylitis Each rheumatic disease has its ...

  1. Applying the New Genetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sorenson, James

    1976-01-01

    New developments in the prediction and treatment of genetic diseases are presented. Genetic counseling and the role of the counselor, and rights of individuals to reproduce versus societal impact of genetic disorders, are discussed. (RW)

  2. Genetics and Rheumatic Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Well with Rheumatic Disease Genetics and Rheumatic Disease Genetics and Rheumatic Disease Fast Facts Studying twins has ... 70%, and for non-identical pairs, even lower. Genetics and ankylosing spondylitis Each rheumatic disease has its ...

  3. Microbial processes in frozen food

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geiges, O.

    Deep freezing of food and storage at -19 degC is a standard conservation procedure in food technology. The lower limit of growth of bacteria in food is from about -5 degC to about -8 degC, whereas the reproduction limit of yeasts is 2 to 3 degC lower. Storage temperatures above -10 degC should therefore not be used. At -18 degC, a commonly used storage temperature, no growth of microorganisms will occur. The microorganisms mainly found at the lower growth limit are Pseudomonas sp. and basidiomycete yeasts. The reduction in the number of microorganisms due to freezing, storage, and thawing is not of practical importance. Microbial enzymes, in particular lipases and proteases, are still active at -18 degC. Therefore, the quality of raw products and good hygiene at the production site are most important.

  4. Antibiotic tolerance and microbial biofilms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Folkesson, Anders

    Increased tolerance to antimicrobial agents is thought to be an important feature of microbes growing in biofilms. We study the dynamics of antibiotic action within hydrodynamic flow chamber biofilms of Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa using isogenic mutants and fluorescent gene...... expression reporters and we address the question of how biofilm organization affects antibiotic susceptibility. The dynamics of microbial killing is monitored by viable count determination, and confocal laser microscopy. Our work shows that the apparent increased antibiotic tolerance is due to the formation...... of antibiotic tolerant subpopulations within the biofilm. The formation of these subpopulations is highly variable and dependent on the antibiotic used, the biofilm structural organization and the induction of specific tolerance mechanisms....

  5. Microbial reduction of iron ore

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffmann, Michael R.; Arnold, Robert G.; Stephanopoulos, Gregory

    1989-01-01

    A process is provided for reducing iron ore by treatment with microorganisms which comprises forming an aqueous mixture of iron ore, microorganisms operable for reducing the ferric iron of the iron ore to ferrous iron, and a substrate operable as an energy source for the microbial reduction; and maintaining the aqueous mixture for a period of time and under conditions operable to effect the reduction of the ore. Preferably the microorganism is Pseudomonas sp. 200 and the reduction conducted anaerobically with a domestic wastewater as the substrate. An aqueous solution containing soluble ferrous iron can be separated from the reacted mixture, treated with a base to precipitate ferrous hydroxide which can then be recovered as a concentrated slurry.

  6. Microbial processes and subsurface contaminants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molz, Fred J.

    A Chapman Conference entitled “Microbial Processes in the Transport, Fate, and In Situ Treatment of Subsurface Contaminants” was held in Snowbird, Utah, October 1-3, 1986. Members of the program committee and session chairmen were Lenore Clesceri (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, N.Y.), David Gibson (University of Texas, Austin), James Mercer (GeoTrans, Inc., Herndon , Va.), Donald Michelsen (Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg), Fred Molz (Auburn University, Auburn, Ala.), Bruce Rittman (University of Illinois, Urbana), Gary Sayler (University of Tennessee, Knoxville), and John T. Wilson (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Ada, Okla.). The following report attempts to highlight the six sessions that constituted the conference. For additional information, including a bound summary and abstracts, contact Fred J. Molz, Civil Engineering Department, Auburn University, AL 36849 (telephone: 205-826-4321).

  7. Resolution in forensic microbial genotyping

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Velsko, S P

    2005-08-30

    Resolution is a key parameter for differentiating among the large number of strain typing methods that could be applied to pathogens involved in bioterror events or biocrimes. In this report we develop a first-principles analysis of strain typing resolution using a simple mathematical model to provide a basis for the rational design of microbial typing systems for forensic applications. We derive two figures of merit that describe the resolving power and phylogenetic depth of a strain typing system. Rough estimates of these figures-of-merit for MLVA, MLST, IS element, AFLP, hybridization microarrays, and other bacterial typing methods are derived from mutation rate data reported in the literature. We also discuss the general problem of how to construct a ''universal'' practical typing system that has the highest possible resolution short of whole-genome sequencing, and that is applicable with minimal modification to a wide range of pathogens.

  8. Microbial enhanced oil recovery (MEOR).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Lewis R

    2010-06-01

    Two-thirds of the oil ever found is still in the ground even after primary and secondary production. Microbial enhanced oil recovery (MEOR) is one of the tertiary methods purported to increase oil recovery. Since 1946 more than 400 patents on MEOR have been issued, but none has gained acceptance by the oil industry. Most of the literature on MEOR is from laboratory experiments or from field trials of insufficient duration or that lack convincing proof of the process. Several authors have made recommendations required to establish MEOR as a viable method to enhance oil recovery, and until these tests are performed, MEOR will remain an unproven concept rather than a highly desirable reality. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Conditioning biomass for microbial growth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bodie, Elizabeth A; England, George

    2015-03-31

    The present invention relates to methods for improving the yield of microbial processes that use lignocellulose biomass as a nutrient source. The methods comprise conditioning a composition comprising lignocellulose biomass with an enzyme composition that comprises a phenol oxidizing enzyme. The conditioned composition can support a higher rate of growth of microorganisms in a process. In one embodiment, a laccase composition is used to condition lignocellulose biomass derived from non-woody plants, such as corn and sugar cane. The invention also encompasses methods for culturing microorganisms that are sensitive to inhibitory compounds in lignocellulose biomass. The invention further provides methods of making a product by culturing the production microorganisms in conditioned lignocellulose biomass.

  10. Antibiotic tolerance and microbial biofilms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Folkesson, Anders

    Increased tolerance to antimicrobial agents is thought to be an important feature of microbes growing in biofilms. We study the dynamics of antibiotic action within hydrodynamic flow chamber biofilms of Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa using isogenic mutants and fluorescent gene...... expression reporters and we address the question of how biofilm organization affects antibiotic susceptibility. The dynamics of microbial killing is monitored by viable count determination, and confocal laser microscopy. Our work shows that the apparent increased antibiotic tolerance is due to the formation...... of antibiotic tolerant subpopulations within the biofilm. The formation of these subpopulations is highly variable and dependent on the antibiotic used, the biofilm structural organization and the induction of specific tolerance mechanisms....

  11. Conditioning biomass for microbial growth

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bodie, Elizabeth A; England, George

    2015-03-31

    The present invention relates to methods for improving the yield of microbial processes that use lignocellulose biomass as a nutrient source. The methods comprise conditioning a composition comprising lignocellulose biomass with an enzyme composition that comprises a phenol oxidizing enzyme. The conditioned composition can support a higher rate of growth of microorganisms in a process. In one embodiment, a laccase composition is used to condition lignocellulose biomass derived from non-woody plants, such as corn and sugar cane. The invention also encompasses methods for culturing microorganisms that are sensitive to inhibitory compounds in lignocellulose biomass. The invention further provides methods of making a product by culturing the production microorganisms in conditioned lignocellulose biomass.

  12. Analysis of Illumina Microbial Assemblies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Clum, Alicia; Foster, Brian; Froula, Jeff; LaButti, Kurt; Sczyrba, Alex; Lapidus, Alla; Woyke, Tanja

    2010-05-28

    Since the emerging of second generation sequencing technologies, the evaluation of different sequencing approaches and their assembly strategies for different types of genomes has become an important undertaken. Next generation sequencing technologies dramatically increase sequence throughput while decreasing cost, making them an attractive tool for whole genome shotgun sequencing. To compare different approaches for de-novo whole genome assembly, appropriate tools and a solid understanding of both quantity and quality of the underlying sequence data are crucial. Here, we performed an in-depth analysis of short-read Illumina sequence assembly strategies for bacterial and archaeal genomes. Different types of Illumina libraries as well as different trim parameters and assemblers were evaluated. Results of the comparative analysis and sequencing platforms will be presented. The goal of this analysis is to develop a cost-effective approach for the increased throughput of the generation of high quality microbial genomes.

  13. Microbial life in geothermal waters

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sand, W. [Universitaet Hamburg (Germany). Mikrobiologie

    2003-12-01

    Geothermal waters usually contain many salts, often in varying concentrations. Some of these salts, especially if they are oxidizable or reducible, may be subject to microbial conversion and/or (bio)precipitation. Microorganisms can oxidize, sometimes even under anoxic (absence of oxygen) conditions, reduced sulfur compounds, iron (II) ions, and manganese (II) ions, to mention just a few of the most important. On the other hand, partially or fully oxidized compounds can be reduced by microorganisms, for example sulfur compounds, iron (III) ions, manganese (IV) ions, nitrogen oxides such as nitrite and nitrate, and, finally, bicarbonate and carbonate ions. If organic compounds are present, these may also be oxidized or reduced. A multitude of these microorganisms are able to perform such a metabolism under aerobic or anoxic conditions. All these (bio)processes allow bacteria to grow and proliferate. The consequences include biocorrosion and biodeterioration. The growth requirements and the biodeterioration mechanisms will be discussed in this review. (author)

  14. Microbial deprivation, inflammation and cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Hertzen, Leena C; Joensuu, H; Haahtela, T

    2011-06-01

    Dysregulated immune function is involved in the pathogenesis of many common human diseases. Living in urban, microbe-poor environment may have a profound influence on the immune function and eventually also on carcinogenesis. Unfortunately, few studies have thus far addressed the role of exposure to the environmental microbiota on the risk of cancer. Which mechanisms are broken in individuals prone to develop chronic inflammation in response to exposure that does not cause harm in others? Recent work in immunology has revealed that Th17 cells, a third subset of Th cells, and inflammatory cytokines, particularly IL-23, are closely linked with tumour-associated inflammation. Albeit the precise role of Th17 cells in cancer is still unclear and a matter of debate, accumulating evidence shows that Th17 cells are enriched in a wide range of human tumours, and that these tumour-derived Th17 cells may promote angiogenesis, tumour growth and inflammation. Regulatory T cells, in turn, appear to have counter-regulatory effects on Th17 cells and can inhibit their function. Thus, the regulatory network, induced and strengthened by continuous exposure to environmental microbiota, may play an important role in tumour immunobiology in preventing the establishment of chronic inflammation in its early phases. In addition, the discovery of the Toll-like receptor (TLR) system has brought micro-organisms to new light; continuous signalling via these TLRs and other receptors that sense microbial components is necessary for epithelial cell integrity, tissue repair, and recovery from injury. In this communication, we summarise the epidemiological data of living in environments with diverse microbial exposures and the risk of cancer, and discuss the related immunological mechanisms, focusing on the links between environmental microbiota, the Th17/IL-23 axis and cancer-associated inflammation.

  15. Expanding the product profile of a microbial alkane biosynthetic pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harger, Matthew; Zheng, Lei; Moon, Austin; Ager, Casey; An, Ju Hye; Choe, Chris; Lai, Yi-Ling; Mo, Benjamin; Zong, David; Smith, Matthew D; Egbert, Robert G; Mills, Jeremy H; Baker, David; Pultz, Ingrid Swanson; Siegel, Justin B

    2013-01-18

    Microbially produced alkanes are a new class of biofuels that closely match the chemical composition of petroleum-based fuels. Alkanes can be generated from the fatty acid biosynthetic pathway by the reduction of acyl-ACPs followed by decarbonylation of the resulting aldehydes. A current limitation of this pathway is the restricted product profile, which consists of n-alkanes of 13, 15, and 17 carbons in length. To expand the product profile, we incorporated a new part, FabH2 from Bacillus subtilis , an enzyme known to have a broader specificity profile for fatty acid initiation than the native FabH of Escherichia coli . When provided with the appropriate substrate, the addition of FabH2 resulted in an altered alkane product profile in which significant levels of n-alkanes of 14 and 16 carbons in length are produced. The production of even chain length alkanes represents initial steps toward the expansion of this recently discovered microbial alkane production pathway to synthesize complex fuels. This work was conceived and performed as part of the 2011 University of Washington international Genetically Engineered Machines (iGEM) project.

  16. Microbial forensics: fiber optic microarray subtyping of Bacillus anthracis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shepard, Jason R. E.

    2009-05-01

    The past decade has seen increased development and subsequent adoption of rapid molecular techniques involving DNA analysis for detection of pathogenic microorganisms, also termed microbial forensics. The continued accumulation of microbial sequence information in genomic databases now better positions the field of high-throughput DNA analysis to proceed in a more manageable fashion. The potential to build off of these databases exists as technology continues to develop, which will enable more rapid, cost effective analyses. This wealth of genetic information, along with new technologies, has the potential to better address some of the current problems and solve the key issues involved in DNA analysis of pathogenic microorganisms. To this end, a high density fiber optic microarray has been employed, housing numerous DNA sequences simultaneously for detection of various pathogenic microorganisms, including Bacillus anthracis, among others. Each organism is analyzed with multiple sequences and can be sub-typed against other closely related organisms. For public health labs, real-time PCR methods have been developed as an initial preliminary screen, but culture and growth are still considered the gold standard. Technologies employing higher throughput than these standard methods are better suited to capitalize on the limitless potential garnered from the sequence information. Microarray analyses are one such format positioned to exploit this potential, and our array platform is reusable, allowing repetitive tests on a single array, providing an increase in throughput and decrease in cost, along with a certainty of detection, down to the individual strain level.

  17. The effects of bacteriophage and nanoparticles on microbial processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moody, Austin L.

    There are approximately 1031 tailed phages in the biosphere, making them the most abundant organism. Bacteriophages are viruses that infect bacteria. Due to the large diversity and abundance, no two bacteriophages that have been isolated are genetically the same. Phage products have potential in disease therapy to solve bacteria-related problems, such as infections resulting from resistant strains of Staphylococcus aureus. A bacteriophage capable of infecting methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) was isolated from bovine hair. The bacteriophage, named JB phage, was characterized using purification, amplification, cesium chloride banding, scanning electron microscopy, and transmission electron microscopy. JB phage and nanoparticles were used in various in vitro and in vivo models to test their effects on microbial processes. Scanning and transmission electron microscopy studies revealed strong interactions between JB phage and nanoparticles, which resulted in increased bacteriophage infectivity. JB phage and nanoparticle cocktails were used as a therapeutic to treat skin and systemic infections in mice caused by MRSA.

  18. Development of a high temperature microbial fermentation process for butanol

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jeor, Jeffery D. St. [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Reed, David W. [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Daubaras, Dayna L. [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Thompson, Vicki S. [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States)

    2015-08-01

    Transforming renewable biomass into cost-competitive high-performance biofuels and bioproducts is key to the U.S. future energy and chemical needs. Butanol production by microbial fermentation for chemical conversion to polyolefins, elastomers, drop-in jet or diesel fuel, and other chemicals is a promising solution. A high temperature fermentation process could decrease energy costs, capital cost, give higher butanol production, and allow for continuous fermentation. In this paper, we describe our approach to genetically transform Geobacillus caldoxylosiliticus, using a pUCG18 plasmid, for potential insertion of a butanol production pathway. Transformation methods tested were electroporation of electrocompetent cells, ternary conjugation with E. coli donor and helper strains, and protoplast fusion. These methods have not been successful using the current plasmid. Growth controls show cells survive the various methods tested, suggesting the possibility of transformation inhibition from a DNA restriction modification system in G. caldoxylosiliticus, as reported in the literature.

  19. Promoting uranium immobilization by the activities of microbial phophatases

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sobecky, Patricia A.

    2005-06-01

    The first objective of this project is to determine the relationship of phosphatase activity to metal resistance in subsurface strains and the role of lateral gene transfer (LGT) in dissemination of nonspecific acid phosphatase genes. Nonspecific acid phosphohydrolases are a broad group of secreted microbial phosphatases that function in acidic-to-neutral pH ranges and utilize a wide range of organophosphate substrates. We have previously shown that PO43- accumulation during growth on a model organophosphorus compound was attributable to the overproduction of alkaline phosphatase by genetically modified subsurface pseudomonads [Powers et al. (2002) FEMS Microbiol. Ecol. 41:115-123]. During this report period, we have extended these results to include indigenous metal resistant subsurface microorganisms cultivated from the Field Research Center (FRC), in Oak Ridge Tennessee.

  20. Microbial metabolic engineering for L-threonine production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Xunyan; Quinn, Peter J; Wang, Xiaoyuan

    2012-01-01

    L-threonine, one of the three major amino acids produced throughout the world, has a wide application in industry, as an additive or as a precursor for the biosynthesis of other chemicals. It is predominantly produced through microbial fermentation the efficiency of which largely depends on the quality of strains. Metabolic engineering based on a cogent understanding of the metabolic pathways of L-threonine biosynthesis and regulation provides an effective alternative to the traditional breeding for strain development. Continuing efforts have been made in revealing the mechanisms and regulation of L-threonine producing strains, as well as in metabolic engineering of suitable organisms whereby genetically-defined, industrially competitive L-threonine producing strains have been successfully constructed. This review focuses on the global metabolic and regulatory networks responsible for L-threonine biosynthesis, the molecular mechanisms of regulation, and the strategies employed in strain engineering.

  1. Significance and Biological Importance of Pyrimidine in the Microbial World

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vinita Sharma

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Microbes are unique creatures that adapt to varying lifestyles and environment resistance in extreme or adverse conditions. The genetic architecture of microbe may bear a significant signature not only in the sequences position, but also in the lifestyle to which it is adapted. It becomes a challenge for the society to find new chemical entities which can treat microbial infections. The present review aims to focus on account of important chemical moiety, that is, pyrimidine and its various derivatives as antimicrobial agents. In the current studies we represent more than 200 pyrimidines as antimicrobial agents with different mono-, di-, tri-, and tetrasubstituted classes along with in vitro antimicrobial activities of pyrimidines derivatives which can facilitate the development of more potent and effective antimicrobial agents.

  2. Development of a High Temperature Microbial Fermentation Processfor Butanol Production

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    St. Jeor, Jeffery D.; Reed, David W.; Daubaras, Dayna L.; Thompson, Vicki S.

    2016-06-01

    Transforming renewable biomass into cost competitive high-performance biofuels and bioproducts is key to US energy security. Butanol production by microbial fermentation and chemical conversion to polyolefins, elastomers, drop-in jet or diesel fuel, and other chemicals is a promising solution. A high temperature fermentation process can facilitate butanol recovery up to 40%, by using gas stripping. Other benefits of fermentation at high temperatures are optimal hydrolysis rates in the saccharification of biomass which leads to maximized butanol production, decrease in energy costs associated with reactor cooling and capital cost associated with reactor design, and a decrease in contamination and cost for maintaining a sterile environment. Butanol stripping at elevated temperatures gives higher butanol production through constant removal and continuous fermentation. We describe methods used in an attempt to genetically prepare Geobacillus caldoxylosiliticus for insertion of a butanol pathway. Methods used were electroporation of electrocompetent cells, ternary conjugation with E. coli, and protoplast fusion.

  3. Optogenetics: 10 years of microbial opsins in neuroscience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deisseroth, Karl

    2015-09-01

    Over the past 10 years, the development and convergence of microbial opsin engineering, modular genetic methods for cell-type targeting and optical strategies for guiding light through tissue have enabled versatile optical control of defined cells in living systems, defining modern optogenetics. Despite widespread recognition of the importance of spatiotemporally precise causal control over cellular signaling, for nearly the first half (2005-2009) of this 10-year period, as optogenetics was being created, there were difficulties in implementation, few publications and limited biological findings. In contrast, the ensuing years have witnessed a substantial acceleration in the application domain, with the publication of thousands of discoveries and insights into the function of nervous systems and beyond. This Historical Commentary reflects on the scientific landscape of this decade-long transition.

  4. Genetic compatibility determines endophyte-grass combinations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kari Saikkonen

    Full Text Available Even highly mutually beneficial microbial-plant interactions, such as mycorrhizal- and rhizobial-plant exchanges, involve selfishness, cheating and power-struggles between the partners, which depending on prevailing selective pressures, lead to a continuum of interactions from antagonistic to mutualistic. Using manipulated grass-endophyte combinations in a five year common garden experiment, we show that grass genotypes and genetic mismatches constrain genetic combinations between the vertically (via host seeds transmitted endophytes and the out-crossing host, thereby reducing infections in established grass populations. Infections were lost in both grass tillers and seedlings in F(1 and F(2 generations, respectively. Experimental plants were collected as seeds from two different environments, i.e., meadows and nearby riverbanks. Endophyte-related benefits to the host included an increased number of inflorescences, but only in meadow plants and not until the last growing season of the experiment. Our results illustrate the importance of genetic host specificity and trans-generational maternal effects on the genetic structure of a host population, which act as destabilizing forces in endophyte-grass symbioses. We propose that (1 genetic mismatches may act as a buffering mechanism against highly competitive endophyte-grass genotype combinations threatening the biodiversity of grassland communities and (2 these mismatches should be acknowledged, particularly in breeding programmes aimed at harnessing systemic and heritable endophytes to improve the agriculturally valuable characteristics of cultivars.

  5. Novel genetic markers in inflammatory bowel disease

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    Genetic factors play a significant role in determining inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) susceptibility. Epidemiologic data support genetic contribution to the pathogenesis of IBD, which include familial aggregation, twin studies, racial and ethnic differences in disease prevalence. Linkage studies have identified several susceptibility genes contained in different genomic regions named IBD1 to IBD9. Nucleotide oligomerization domain (NOD2) and human leukocyte antigen (HLA) genes are the most extensively studied genetic regions (IBD1 and IBD3 respectively) in IBD. Mutations of the NOD2 gene are associated with Crohn's disease (CD) and several HLA genes are associated with ulcerative colitis (UC) and CD. Toll like receptors (TLRs) have an important role in the innate immune response against infections by mediating recognition of pathogen-associated microbial patterns. Studying single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in molecules involved in bacterial recognition seems to be essential to define genetic backgrounds at risk of IBD. Recently, numerous new genes have been identified to be involved in the genetic susceptibility to IBD: NOD1/Caspase-activation recruitment domains 4 (CARD4), Chemokine ligand 20 (CCL20), IL-11, and IL-18 among others. The characterization of these novel genes potentially will lead to the identification of therapeutic agents and clinical assessment of phenotype and prognosis in patients with IBD.

  6. Electroactive bacteria--molecular mechanisms and genetic tools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sydow, Anne; Krieg, Thomas; Mayer, Florian; Schrader, Jens; Holtmann, Dirk

    2014-10-01

    In nature, different bacteria have evolved strategies to transfer electrons far beyond the cell surface. This electron transfer enables the use of these bacteria in bioelectrochemical systems (BES), such as microbial fuel cells (MFCs) and microbial electrosynthesis (MES). The main feature of electroactive bacteria (EAB) in these applications is the ability to transfer electrons from the microbial cell to an electrode or vice versa instead of the natural redox partner. In general, the application of electroactive organisms in BES offers the opportunity to develop efficient and sustainable processes for the production of energy as well as bulk and fine chemicals, respectively. This review describes and compares key microbiological features of different EAB. Furthermore, it focuses on achievements and future prospects of genetic manipulation for efficient strain development.

  7. Microbial stress priming: a meta-analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrade-Linares, Diana R; Lehmann, Anika; Rillig, Matthias C

    2016-04-01

    Microbes have to cope with complex and dynamic environments, making it likely that anticipatory responses provide fitness benefits. Mild, previous stressors can prepare microbes (stress priming) to further and potentially damaging stressors (triggering). We here quantitatively summarize the findings from over 250 trials of 34 studies including bacteria and fungi, demonstrating that priming to stress has a beneficial impact on microbial survival. In fact, survival of primed microbes was about 10-fold higher compared with that in non-primed microbes. Categorical moderators related to microbial taxonomy and the kind of stress applied as priming or as triggering revealed significant differences of priming effect size among 14 different microbial species, 6 stress categories and stressor combination. We found that priming by osmotic, physiological and temperature stress had the highest positive effect sizes on microbial response. Cross-protection was evident for physiological, temperature and pH stresses. Microbes are better prepared against triggering by oxidative, temperature and osmotic stress. Our finding of an overall positive mean effect of priming regardless of the microbial system and particular stressor provides unprecedentedly strong evidence of the broad ecological significance of microbial stress priming. These results further suggest that stress priming may be an important factor in shaping microbial communities.

  8. Genetics Home Reference: vitiligo

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... physical functioning. However, concerns about appearance and ethnic identity are significant issues for many affected ... What information about a genetic condition can statistics provide? Why are some genetic ...

  9. EVA Suit Microbial Leakage Investigation Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Falker, Jay; Baker, Christopher; Clayton, Ronald; Rucker, Michelle

    2016-01-01

    The objective of this project is to collect microbial samples from various EVA suits to determine how much microbial contamination is typically released during simulated planetary exploration activities. Data will be released to the planetary protection and science communities, and advanced EVA system designers. In the best case scenario, we will discover that very little microbial contamination leaks from our current or prototype suit designs, in the worst case scenario, we will identify leak paths, learn more about what affects leakage--and we'll have a new, flight-certified swab tool for our EVA toolbox.

  10. Mathematical modeling of microbial growth in milk

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jhony Tiago Teleken

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available A mathematical model to predict microbial growth in milk was developed and analyzed. The model consists of a system of two differential equations of first order. The equations are based on physical hypotheses of population growth. The model was applied to five different sets of data of microbial growth in dairy products selected from Combase, which is the most important database in the area with thousands of datasets from around the world, and the results showed a good fit. In addition, the model provides equations for the evaluation of the maximum specific growth rate and the duration of the lag phase which may provide useful information about microbial growth.

  11. EVALUATION OF MICROBIAL SURVIVAL IN EXTRATERRESTRIAL ENVIRONMENTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Betül BULUÇ

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, the space environments where microbial terrestrial life could form and evolve in, were evaluted with the base of the physical and chemical properties. In addition, Earthial microbial life formation conditions in the interstellar medium and the other planets are investigated and the survival of microorganisms in the space environments are questioned. As a result, considering the aspects of terrestrial microbial life, we suggest that the space environment and other planets could not be a habitat for Earthial microorganisms.

  12. Biotechnological Processes in Microbial Amylase Production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Subash C. B. Gopinath

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Amylase is an important and indispensable enzyme that plays a pivotal role in the field of biotechnology. It is produced mainly from microbial sources and is used in many industries. Industrial sectors with top-down and bottom-up approaches are currently focusing on improving microbial amylase production levels by implementing bioengineering technologies. The further support of energy consumption studies, such as those on thermodynamics, pinch technology, and environment-friendly technologies, has hastened the large-scale production of the enzyme. Herein, the importance of microbial (bacteria and fungi amylase is discussed along with its production methods from the laboratory to industrial scales.

  13. Genetic aspects and genetic epidemiology of parasomnias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hublin, Christer; Kaprio, Jaakko

    2003-10-01

    Parasomnias are undesirable phenomena associated with sleep. Many of them run in families, and genetic factors have been long suggested to be involved in their occurrence. This article reviews the present knowledge of the genetics of the major classical behavioral parasomnias as well as present results from genetic epidemiological studies. The level and type of evidence for genetic effects varies much from parasomnia to parasomnia. The genetic factors are best established in enuresis, with several linkages to chromosomal loci, but their functions are not so far known. Environmental causes and gene-environment interactions are most probably also of great importance in the origin of complex traits or disorders such as parasomnias.

  14. Molecular Technique to Reduce PCR Bias for Deeper Understanding of Microbial Diversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaishampayan, Parag A.; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri J.

    2012-01-01

    Current planetary protection policies require that spacecraft targeted to sensitive solar system bodies be assembled and readied for launch in controlled cleanroom environments. A better understanding of the distribution and frequency at which high-risk contaminant microbes are encountered on spacecraft surfaces would significantly aid in assessing the threat of forward contamination. However, despite a growing understanding of the diverse microbial populations present in cleanrooms, less abundant microbial populations are probably not adequately taken into account due to technological limitations. This novel approach encompasses a wide spectrum of microbial species and will represent the true picture of spacecraft cleanroom-associated microbial diversity. All of the current microbial diversity assessment techniques are based on an initial PCR amplification step. However, a number of factors are known to bias PCR amplification and jeopardize the true representation of bacterial diversity. PCR amplification of a minor template appears to be suppressed by the amplification of a more abundant template. It is widely acknowledged among environmental molecular microbiologists that genetic biosignatures identified from an environment only represent the most dominant populations. The technological bottleneck overlooks the presence of the less abundant minority population and may underestimate their role in the ecosystem maintenance. DNA intercalating agents such as propidium monoazide (PMA) covalently bind with DNA molecules upon photolysis using visible light, and make it unavailable for DNA polymerase enzyme during polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Environmental DNA samples will be treated with suboptimum PMA concentration, enough to intercalate with 90 99% of the total DNA. The probability of PMA binding with DNA from abundant bacterial species will be much higher than binding with DNA from less abundant species. This will increase the relative DNA concentration of

  15. Microbial community structure in different wastewater treatment processes characterized by single-strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP) technique

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yangguo ZHAO; Aijie WANG; Nanqi REN; Yan ZHAO

    2008-01-01

    In order to investigate microbial community structures in different wastewater treatment processes and understand the relationship between the structures and the status of processes, the microbial community diversity, variety and distribution in five wastewater treatment processes were studied by a culture-independent genetic fingerprinting technique single-strand conformation poly-morphism (SSCP). The five processes included denitrifying and phosphate-removal system (diminished N), Chinese traditional medicine wastewater treatment system (P), beer wastewater treatment system (W), fermentative biohydrogen-producing system (H), and sulfate-reduction system (S). The results indicated that the microbial community profiles in the wastewater bioreactors with the uniform status were very similar. The diversity of microbial populations was correlated with the complexity of organic contaminants in wastewater. Chinese traditional medicine wastewater contained more complex organic components; hence, the population diversity was higher than that of simple nutrient bioreactors fed with molasses wastewater. Compared with the strain bands in a simulated community, the relative proportion of some functional microbial populations in bioreactors was not dom-inant. Fermentative biohydrogen producer Ethanoligenens harbinense in the better condition bioreactor had only a 5% band density, and the Desulfovibrio sp. in the sulfate-reducing bioreactor had less than 1.5% band density. The SSCP profiles could identify the difference in microbial community structures in wastewater treatment processes, monitor some of the functional microbes in these processes, and consequently provide useful guidance for improving their efficiency.

  16. Next-generation sequencing (NGS) for assessment of microbial water quality: current progress, challenges, and future opportunities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, BoonFei; Ng, Charmaine; Nshimyimana, Jean Pierre; Loh, Lay Leng; Gin, Karina Y-H; Thompson, Janelle R

    2015-01-01

    Water quality is an emergent property of a complex system comprised of interacting microbial populations and introduced microbial and chemical contaminants. Studies leveraging next-generation sequencing (NGS) technologies are providing new insights into the ecology of microbially mediated processes that influence fresh water quality such as algal blooms, contaminant biodegradation, and pathogen dissemination. In addition, sequencing methods targeting small subunit (SSU) rRNA hypervariable regions have allowed identification of signature microbial species that serve as bioindicators for sewage contamination in these environments. Beyond amplicon sequencing, metagenomic and metatranscriptomic analyses of microbial communities in fresh water environments reveal the genetic capabilities and interplay of waterborne microorganisms, shedding light on the mechanisms for production and biodegradation of toxins and other contaminants. This review discusses the challenges and benefits of applying NGS-based methods to water quality research and assessment. We will consider the suitability and biases inherent in the application of NGS as a screening tool for assessment of biological risks and discuss the potential and limitations for direct quantitative interpretation of NGS data. Secondly, we will examine case studies from recent literature where NGS based methods have been applied to topics in water quality assessment, including development of bioindicators for sewage pollution and microbial source tracking, characterizing the distribution of toxin and antibiotic resistance genes in water samples, and investigating mechanisms of biodegradation of harmful pollutants that threaten water quality. Finally, we provide a short review of emerging NGS platforms and their potential applications to the next generation of water quality assessment tools.

  17. Divergence in plant and microbial allocation strategies explains continental patterns in microbial allocation and biogeochemical fluxes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Averill, Colin

    2014-10-01

    Allocation trade-offs shape ecological and biogeochemical phenomena at local to global scale. Plant allocation strategies drive major changes in ecosystem carbon cycling. Microbial allocation to enzymes that decompose carbon vs. organic nutrients may similarly affect ecosystem carbon cycling. Current solutions to this allocation problem prioritise stoichiometric tradeoffs implemented in plant ecology. These solutions may not maximise microbial growth and fitness under all conditions, because organic nutrients are also a significant carbon resource for microbes. I created multiple allocation frameworks and simulated microbial growth using a microbial explicit biogeochemical model. I demonstrate that prioritising stoichiometric trade-offs does not optimise microbial allocation, while exploiting organic nutrients as carbon resources does. Analysis of continental-scale enzyme data supports the allocation patterns predicted by this framework, and modelling suggests large deviations in soil C loss based on which strategy is implemented. Therefore, understanding microbial allocation strategies will likely improve our understanding of carbon cycling and climate.

  18. Microbial-processing of fruit and vegetable wastes for production of vital enzymes and organic acids: Biotechnology and scopes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panda, Sandeep K; Mishra, Swati S; Kayitesi, Eugenie; Ray, Ramesh C

    2016-04-01

    Wastes generated from fruits and vegetables are organic in nature and contribute a major share in soil and water pollution. Also, green house gas emission caused by fruit and vegetable wastes (FVWs) is a matter of serious environmental concern. This review addresses the developments over the last one decade on microbial processing technologies for production of enzymes and organic acids from FVWs. The advances in genetic engineering for improvement of microbial strains in order to enhance the production of the value added bio-products as well as the concept of zero-waste economy have been briefly discussed.

  19. 40 CFR 158.2110 - Microbial pesticides data requirements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 23 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Microbial pesticides data requirements...) PESTICIDE PROGRAMS DATA REQUIREMENTS FOR PESTICIDES Microbial Pesticides § 158.2110 Microbial pesticides data requirements. (a) For all microbial pesticides. (1) The following § 158.2120 through §...

  20. 40 CFR 158.2100 - Microbial pesticides definition and applicability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 23 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Microbial pesticides definition and...) PESTICIDE PROGRAMS DATA REQUIREMENTS FOR PESTICIDES Microbial Pesticides § 158.2100 Microbial pesticides definition and applicability. (a) This subpart applies to all living or dead microbial pesticides as...

  1. Genetic pesticides: Monsanto goes ahead with trials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beardsley, Tim

    The Monsanto Company will soon notify the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that it plans to conduct the first field test of a genetically-engineered microbial pesticide, thereby becoming the first company to break with the convention whereby private corporations have voluntarily sought approval for genetic engineering experiments from the Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee (RAC) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). It is assumed that Monsanto's decision was influenced by a preliminary legal injunction blocking NIH approval of such field trials without a formal environmental assessment. EPA will allow tests, after 90 days' notice, if it raises no objections to the protocol. Although EPA will not formally call on RAC to examine the protocol, an agency spokesperson said there is "total agreement" between EPA and RAC on what data must be included.

  2. Chemical genetics to examine cellulose biosynthesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seth eDebolt

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Long-term efforts to decode plant cellulose biosynthesis via molecular genetics and biochemical strategies are being enhanced by the ever-expanding scale of omics technologies. An alternative approach to consider are the prospects for inducing change in plant metabolism using exogenously supplied chemical ligands. Cellulose biosynthesis inhibitors (CBI have been identified among known herbicides, during diverse combinatorial chemical libraries screens, and natural chemical screens from microbial agents. In this review, we summarize the current knowledge of the inhibitory effects of CBIs and further group them by how they influence fluorescently tagged cellulose synthase A (CESA proteins. Additional attention is paid to the continuing development of the CBI toolbox to explore the cell biology and genetic mechanisms underpinning effector molecule activity.

  3. Microbial Extracellular Polymeric Substances (EPSs in Ocean Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alan W. Decho

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Microbial cells (i.e., bacteria, archaea, microeukaryotes in oceans secrete a diverse array of large molecules, collectively called extracellular polymeric substances (EPSs or simply exopolymers. These secretions facilitate attachment to surfaces that lead to the formation of structured ‘biofilm’ communities. In open-water environments, they also lead to formation of organic colloids, and larger aggregations of cells, called ‘marine snow.’ Secretion of EPS is now recognized as a fundamental microbial adaptation, occurring under many environmental conditions, and one that influences many ocean processes. This relatively recent realization has revolutionized our understanding of microbial impacts on ocean systems. EPS occur in a range of molecular sizes, conformations and physical/chemical properties, and polysaccharides, proteins, lipids, and even nucleic acids are actively secreted components. Interestingly, however, the physical ultrastructure of how individual EPS interact with each other is poorly understood. Together, the EPS matrix molecules form a three-dimensional architecture from which cells may localize extracellular activities and conduct cooperative/antagonistic interactions that cannot be accomplished efficiently by free-living cells. EPS alter optical signatures of sediments and seawater, and are involved in biogeomineral precipitation and the construction of microbial macrostructures, and horizontal-transfers of genetic information. In the water-column, they contribute to the formation of marine snow, transparent exopolymer particles (TEPs, sea-surface microlayer biofilm, and marine oil snow. Excessive production of EPS occurs during later-stages of phytoplankton blooms as an excess metabolic by product and releases a carbon pool that transitions among dissolved-, colloidal-, and gel-states. Some EPS are highly labile carbon forms, while other forms appear quite refractory to degradation. Emerging studies suggest that EPS

  4. Molecular perspectives and recent advances in microbial remediation of persistent organic pollutants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chakraborty, Jaya; Das, Surajit

    2016-09-01

    Nutrition and pollution stress stimulate genetic adaptation in microorganisms and assist in evolution of diverse metabolic pathways for their survival on several complex organic compounds. Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) are highly lipophilic in nature and cause adverse effects to the environment and human health by biomagnification through the food chain. Diverse microorganisms, harboring numerous plasmids and catabolic genes, acclimatize to these environmentally unfavorable conditions by gene duplication, mutational drift, hypermutation, and recombination. Genetic aspects of some major POP catabolic genes such as biphenyl dioxygenase (bph), DDT 2,3-dioxygenase, and angular dioxygenase assist in degradation of biphenyl, organochlorine pesticides, and dioxins/furans, respectively. Microbial metagenome constitutes the largest genetic reservoir with miscellaneous enzymatic activities implicated in degradation. To tap the metabolic potential of microorganisms, recent techniques like sequence and function-based screening and substrate-induced gene expression are proficient in tracing out novel catabolic genes from the entire metagenome for utilization in enhanced biodegradation. The major endeavor of today's scientific world is to characterize the exact genetic mechanisms of microbes for bioremediation of these toxic compounds by excavating into the uncultured plethora. This review entails the effect of POPs on the environment and involvement of microbial catabolic genes for their removal with the advanced techniques of bioremediation.

  5. Electricity generation and microbial community response to substrate changes in microbial fuel cell

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhang, Yifeng; Min, Booki; Huang, L.;

    2011-01-01

    The effect of substrate changes on the performance and microbial community of two-chamber microbial fuel cells (MFCs) was investigated in this study. The MFCs enriched with a single substrate (e.g., acetate, glucose, or butyrate) had different acclimatization capability to substrate changes....... The MFC enriched with glucose showed rapid and higher power generation, when glucose was switched with acetate or butyrate. However, the MFC enriched with acetate needed a longer adaptation time for utilizing glucose. Microbial community was also changed when the substrate was changed. Clostridium...... of substrate fed to MFC is a very important parameter for reactor performance and microbial community, and significantly affects power generation in MFCs....

  6. A thermodynamic theory of microbial growth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desmond-Le Quéméner, Elie; Bouchez, Théodore

    2014-08-01

    Our ability to model the growth of microbes only relies on empirical laws, fundamentally restricting our understanding and predictive capacity in many environmental systems. In particular, the link between energy balances and growth dynamics is still not understood. Here we demonstrate a microbial growth equation relying on an explicit theoretical ground sustained by Boltzmann statistics, thus establishing a relationship between microbial growth rate and available energy. The validity of our equation was then questioned by analyzing the microbial isotopic fractionation phenomenon, which can be viewed as a kinetic consequence of the differences in energy contents of isotopic isomers used for growth. We illustrate how the associated theoretical predictions are actually consistent with recent experimental evidences. Our work links microbial population dynamics to the thermodynamic driving forces of the ecosystem, which opens the door to many biotechnological and ecological developments.

  7. Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment Tutorial - Primer

    Science.gov (United States)

    This document provides a Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment (QMRA) primer that organizes QMRA tutorials. The tutorials describe functionality of a QMRA infrastructure, guide the user through software use and assessment options, provide step-by-step instructions for implementi...

  8. 202 197 Heavy Metals and Microbial Contamin

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    2008-12-02

    Dec 2, 2008 ... ABSTRACT: The heavy metal and microbial contaminants levels were evaluated in a commercial polyherbal product ... fungal toxins such as aflatoxins, pesticides and synthetic ... natural products is that 'natural' equals safe.

  9. Center for Advancing Microbial Risk Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Center for Advancing Microbial Risk Assessment (CAMRA), based at Michigan State University and jointly funded by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the...

  10. Exocellular electron transfer in anaerobic microbial communities

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stams, A.J.M.; Bok, de F.A.M.; Plugge, C.M.; Eekert, van M.H.A.; Dolfing, J.; Schraa, G.

    2006-01-01

    Exocellular electron transfer plays an important role in anaerobic microbial communities that degrade organic matter. Interspecies hydrogen transfer between microorganisms is the driving force for complete biodegradation in methanogenic environments. Many organic compounds are degraded by obligatory

  11. Oral chlorhexidine and microbial contamination during endoscopy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Donatsky, Anders Meller; Holzknecht, Barbara Juliane; Arpi, Magnus

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND: One of the biggest concerns associated with transgastric surgery is contamination and risk of intra-abdominal infection with microbes introduced from the access route. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of oral decontamination with chlorhexidine on microbial contamin......BACKGROUND: One of the biggest concerns associated with transgastric surgery is contamination and risk of intra-abdominal infection with microbes introduced from the access route. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of oral decontamination with chlorhexidine on microbial...... contamination of the endoscope. METHODS: In a prospective, randomized, single-blinded, clinical trial the effect of chlorhexidine mouth rinse was evaluated. As a surrogate for the risk of intra-abdominal contamination during transgastric surgery, microbial contamination of the endoscope during upper endoscopy...... microbial contamination of the endoscope, but micro-organisms with abscess forming capabilities were still present. PPI treatment significantly increased CFU and should be discontinued before transgastric surgery....

  12. Sensing microbial RNA in the cytosol

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas eVABRET

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The innate immune system faces the difficult task of keeping a fine balance between sensitive detection of microbial presence and avoidance of autoimmunity. To this aim, key mechanisms of innate responses rely on isolation of pathogens in specialized subcellular compartments, or sensing of specific microbial patterns absent from the host. Efficient detection of foreign RNA in the cytosol requires an additional layer of complexity from the immune system. In this particular case, innate sensors should be able to distinguish self and non-self molecules that share several similar properties. In this review, we discuss this interplay between cytosolic pattern recognition receptors and the microbial RNA they detect. We describe how microbial RNAs gain access to the cytosol, which receptors they activate and counter-strategies developed by microorganisms to avoid this response.

  13. Soil microbial community of abandoned sand fields.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elhottová, D; Szili-Kovács, T; Tríska, J

    2002-01-01

    Microbiological evaluation of sandy grassland soils from two different stages of secondary succession on abandoned fields (4 and 8 years old fallow) was carried out as a part of research focused on restoration of semi-natural vegetation communities in Kiskunság National Park in Hungary. There was an apparent total N and organic C enrichment, stimulation of microbial growth and microbial community structure change on fields abandoned by agricultural practice (small family farm) in comparison with native undisturbed grassland. A successional trend of the microbial community was found after 4 and 8 years of fallow-lying soil. It consisted in a shift of r-survival strategy to more efficient C economy, in a decrease of specific respiration and metabolic activity, forced accumulation of storage bacterial compounds and increased fungal distribution. The composition of microbial phospholipid fatty acids mixture of soils abandoned at various times was significantly different.

  14. Microbial cell surfaces and secretion systems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tommassen, J.P.M.; Wosten, H.A.B.

    2015-01-01

    Microbial cell surfaces, surface-exposed organelles, and secreted proteins are important for the interaction with the environment, including adhesion to hosts, protection against host defense mechanisms, nutrient acquisition, and intermicrobial competition. Here, we describe the structures of the ce

  15. Guiding bioprocess design by microbial ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volmer, Jan; Schmid, Andreas; Bühler, Bruno

    2015-06-01

    Industrial bioprocess development is driven by profitability and eco-efficiency. It profits from an early stage definition of process and biocatalyst design objectives. Microbial bioprocess environments can be considered as synthetic technical microbial ecosystems. Natural systems follow Darwinian evolution principles aiming at survival and reproduction. Technical systems objectives are eco-efficiency, productivity, and profitable production. Deciphering technical microbial ecology reveals differences and similarities of natural and technical systems objectives, which are discussed in this review in view of biocatalyst and process design and engineering strategies. Strategies for handling opposing objectives of natural and technical systems and for exploiting and engineering natural properties of microorganisms for technical systems are reviewed based on examples. This illustrates the relevance of considering microbial ecology for bioprocess design and the potential for exploitation by synthetic biology strategies.

  16. Microbial contributions to the Precambrian Earth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margulis, L.; Bermudes, D.; Obar, R.

    1986-01-01

    Life has existed on Earth for approximately 3.5 billion years. For most of this time, prokaryotic communities provided the major biological forces changing the Earth. Many changes in atmospheric gas composition occurred during the Archean and Proterozoic eons as a result of microbial activity. Extant microbial communities were used to help understand the dynamics which contributed to these atmospheric changes. The microbial mat communities were characterized according to the organismic constituents. Symbiosis in microbial communities is recognized as a major force in cell evolution. Among the evolutinary enigmas investigated is the problem of the origin of the undulipodia. Undulipodial microtubules are still deployed for major cellular processes such as mitosis and meiosis. Several prokaryotes were tested for the presence of the S1-type protein, so far only spirochetes were found to possess it. The S1-type protein is being sought in cyanobacteria reported to contain microtubules.

  17. Exocellular electron transfer in anaerobic microbial communities

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stams, A.J.M.; Bok, de F.A.M.; Plugge, C.M.; Eekert, van M.H.A.; Dolfing, J.; Schraa, G.

    2006-01-01

    Exocellular electron transfer plays an important role in anaerobic microbial communities that degrade organic matter. Interspecies hydrogen transfer between microorganisms is the driving force for complete biodegradation in methanogenic environments. Many organic compounds are degraded by obligatory

  18. Microbially produced phytotoxins and plant disease management ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Microbially produced phytotoxins and plant disease management. ... African Journal of Biotechnology ... Pathogenic fungi and bacteria often damage their host (plants) tissues by producing toxic metabolites, which induced various symptoms ...

  19. Microbial degradation of textile industrial effluents | Palamthodi ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Microbial degradation of textile industrial effluents. ... African Journal of Biotechnology ... Textile waste water is a highly variable mixture of many polluting substance ranging from inorganic compounds and elements to polymers and organic ...

  20. The genetics of immunity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lazzaro, Brian P; Schneider, David S

    2014-06-17

    In this commentary, Brian P. Lazzaro and David S. Schneider examine the topic of the Genetics of Immunity as explored in this month's issues of GENETICS and G3: Genes|Genomes|Genetics. These inaugural articles are part of a joint Genetics of Immunity collection (ongoing) in the GSA journals. Copyright © 2014 Lazzaro and Schneider.

  1. Genetic code flexibility in microorganisms: novel mechanisms and impact on physiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ling, Jiqiang; O'Donoghue, Patrick; Söll, Dieter

    2015-11-01

    The genetic code, initially thought to be universal and immutable, is now known to contain many variations, including biased codon usage, codon reassignment, ambiguous decoding and recoding. As a result of recent advances in the areas of genome sequencing, biochemistry, bioinformatics and structural biology, our understanding of genetic code flexibility has advanced substantially in the past decade. In this Review, we highlight the prevalence, evolution and mechanistic basis of genetic code variations in microorganisms, and we discuss how this flexibility of the genetic code affects microbial physiology.

  2. Biofilm and dental implant: The microbial link

    OpenAIRE

    Sangeeta Dhir

    2013-01-01

    Mouth provides a congenial environment for the growth of the microorganisms as compared to any other part of the human body by exhibiting an ideal nonshedding surface. Dental plaque happens to be a diverse community of the microorganisms found on the tooth surface. Periodontal disease and the peri-implant disease are specific infections that are originating from these resident microbial species when the balance between the host and the microbial pathogenicity gets disrupted. This review discu...

  3. APPLICATION OF MICROBIAL TECHNOLOGY TO MINERAL PROCESSING

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2000-01-01

    The application of microbial technology to mineral processing has been reviewed with respect to the bioleaching of metals from minerals, the influence of biotreatment on flotation, the biobene ficiation of nonmetallic minerals, and the biotreatment for mine waste reclamation.The application of microbial technology to mineral processing has shown the advantages of high efficiency, low energy and reagent consumption, low capital and operating costs, and low pollution of the environment.

  4. Microbial changes during pregnancy, birth and infancy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meital Nuriel-Ohayon

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Several healthy developmental processes such as pregnancy, fetal development and infant development include a multitude of physiological changes: weight gain, hormonal and metabolic changes, as well as immune changes. In this review we present an additional important factor which both influences and is affected by these physiological processes- the microbiome. We summarize the known changes in microbiota composition at a variety of body sites including gut, vagina, oral cavity and placenta, throughout pregnancy, fetal development and early childhood. There is still a lot to be discovered; yet several pieces of research point to the healthy desired microbial changes. Future research is likely to unravel precise roles and mechanisms of the microbiota in gestation; perhaps linking the metabolic, hormonal and immune changes together. Although some research has started to link microbial dysbiosis and specific microbial populations with unhealthy pregnancy complications, it is important to first understand the context of the natural healthy microbial changes occurring. Until recently the placenta and developing fetus were considered to be germ free, containing no apparent microbiome. We present multiple study results showing distinct microbiota compositions in the placenta and meconium, alluding to early microbial colonization. These results may change dogmas and our overall understanding of the importance and roles of microbiota from the beginning of life. We further review the main factors shaping the infant microbiome- modes of delivery, feeding, weaning, and exposure to antibiotics. Taken together, we are starting to build a broader understanding of healthy vs. abnormal microbial alterations throughout major developmental time-points.

  5. Cheese Microbial Risk Assessments — A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyoung-Hee Choi

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Cheese is generally considered a safe and nutritious food, but foodborne illnesses linked to cheese consumption have occurred in many countries. Several microbial risk assessments related to Listeria monocytogenes, Staphylococcus aureus, and Escherichia coli infections, causing cheese-related foodborne illnesses, have been conducted. Although the assessments of microbial risk in soft and low moisture cheeses such as semi-hard and hard cheeses have been accomplished, it has been more focused on the correlations between pathogenic bacteria and soft cheese, because cheese-associated foodborne illnesses have been attributed to the consumption of soft cheeses. As a part of this microbial risk assessment, predictive models have been developed to describe the relationship between several factors (pH, Aw, starter culture, and time and the fates of foodborne pathogens in cheese. Predictions from these studies have been used for microbial risk assessment as a part of exposure assessment. These microbial risk assessments have identified that risk increased in cheese with high moisture content, especially for raw milk cheese, but the risk can be reduced by preharvest and postharvest preventions. For accurate quantitative microbial risk assessment, more data including interventions such as curd cooking conditions (temperature and time and ripening period should be available for predictive models developed with cheese, cheese consumption amounts and cheese intake frequency data as well as more dose-response models.

  6. An Economic Framework of Microbial Trade.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tasoff, Joshua; Mee, Michael T; Wang, Harris H

    2015-01-01

    A large fraction of microbial life on earth exists in complex communities where metabolic exchange is vital. Microbes trade essential resources to promote their own growth in an analogous way to countries that exchange goods in modern economic markets. Inspired by these similarities, we developed a framework based on general equilibrium theory (GET) from economics to predict the population dynamics of trading microbial communities. Our biotic GET (BGET) model provides an a priori theory of the growth benefits of microbial trade, yielding several novel insights relevant to understanding microbial ecology and engineering synthetic communities. We find that the economic concept of comparative advantage is a necessary condition for mutualistic trade. Our model suggests that microbial communities can grow faster when species are unable to produce essential resources that are obtained through trade, thereby promoting metabolic specialization and increased intercellular exchange. Furthermore, we find that species engaged in trade exhibit a fundamental tradeoff between growth rate and relative population abundance, and that different environments that put greater pressure on group selection versus individual selection will promote varying strategies along this growth-abundance spectrum. We experimentally tested this tradeoff using a synthetic consortium of Escherichia coli cells and found the results match the predictions of the model. This framework provides a foundation to study natural and engineered microbial communities through a new lens based on economic theories developed over the past century.

  7. An Economic Framework of Microbial Trade.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joshua Tasoff

    Full Text Available A large fraction of microbial life on earth exists in complex communities where metabolic exchange is vital. Microbes trade essential resources to promote their own growth in an analogous way to countries that exchange goods in modern economic markets. Inspired by these similarities, we developed a framework based on general equilibrium theory (GET from economics to predict the population dynamics of trading microbial communities. Our biotic GET (BGET model provides an a priori theory of the growth benefits of microbial trade, yielding several novel insights relevant to understanding microbial ecology and engineering synthetic communities. We find that the economic concept of comparative advantage is a necessary condition for mutualistic trade. Our model suggests that microbial communities can grow faster when species are unable to produce essential resources that are obtained through trade, thereby promoting metabolic specialization and increased intercellular exchange. Furthermore, we find that species engaged in trade exhibit a fundamental tradeoff between growth rate and relative population abundance, and that different environments that put greater pressure on group selection versus individual selection will promote varying strategies along this growth-abundance spectrum. We experimentally tested this tradeoff using a synthetic consortium of Escherichia coli cells and found the results match the predictions of the model. This framework provides a foundation to study natural and engineered microbial communities through a new lens based on economic theories developed over the past century.

  8. Halitosis: An oral microbial faction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rajiv Saini

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Halitosis is a widespread condition and believed to affect one-quarter of the population around the world; also, most people have this condition from time to time. Breath malodour may be an important factor in social communication, and therefore may be the origin of concern not only for a possible health condition but also for frequent psychological alterations, leading to social and personal isolation. The most conspicuous malodorous compounds are termed volatile sulphur compounds (VSCs, with hydrogen sulphide, methyl mercaptan, and dimethyl sulphide accounting for roughly 90% of the VSCs. A number of oral bacteria, especially Gram-negative anaerobic species found in the subgingival plaque, produce a diverse array of malodorous compounds as byproducts of their metabolism, including VSCs and short-chain organic acids. Assessment and management of halitosis is of paramount importance in enhancing the overall health; moreover, dentists play a significant role in combating halitosis by reducing the oral microbial stack. Thus, the aim of the present review was to describe the aetiological factors, assessment tools, and therapeutic approaches related to halitosis.

  9. Advanced microbial check valve development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colombo, G. V.; Greenley, D. R.

    1980-01-01

    A flight certified assembly identified as a Microbial Check Valve (MCV) was developed and tested. The MCV is a canister packed with an iodinated anionic exchange resin. The device is used to destroy organisms in a water stream as the water passes through the device. The device is equally effective for fluid flow in either direction and its primary method of organism removal is killing rather than filtering. The MCV was successfully developed for the space shuttle to: disinfect fuel cell water; and prevent back contamination of the stored potable water supply. One version of the device consists of a high residual iodinated resin bed that imparts approximately 2 ppm of iodine to the fuel cell water as it flows to the potable water tanks. A second version of the device consists of a low residual iodinated resin bed. One of these low residual beds is located at each use port in the potable water system for the dual purpose of removing some iodine from the potable water as it is dispensed and also to prevent back contamination of the potable supply.

  10. Microbial contamination in industrial tofu

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thaís Teresa Brandão Cavalheiro Ribeiro

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT: This study aimed to evaluate the microbiological quality of tofu sold in supermarkets in Porto Alegre/Brazil. Bacteria counts were performed for Bacillus cereus , mesophilic, coliforms and Staphylococcus coagulase positive and negative. The presence of Listeria sp. was also evaluated. Two different brands of tofu (A and B were collected, one lot per month, for six months. Five samples from each lot were analyzed. All lots presented mesophilic aerobic counts above 4.3x105CFU g-1. Four of the six lots from brand A and all lots from brand B showed E. coli and/or Staphylococcus coagulase positive counts above the Brazilian law accepted limits. The Staphylococcus coagulase negative counts were higher than those of coagulase positive in all lots. In all lots where Staphylococcus coagulase positive counts were above the legal limit, there were counts of coagulase negative above 104CFU g-1. B. cereus and Listeria sp. were not found in either brand. The majority of lots of brand A and all lots of brand B were unsuitable for human consumption. Our results showed that there are problems in tofu manufacturing in both industries analyzed. There is a need of improvement on its microbial quality to avoid problems of food-borne illness, and finally the need of a better control by the Brazilian inspection services.

  11. Microbial effects on colloidal agglomeration

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hersman, L.

    1995-11-01

    Colloidal particles are known to enhance the transport of radioactive metals through soil and rock systems. This study was performed to determine if a soil microorganism, isolated from the surface samples collected at Yucca Mountain, NV, could affect the colloidal properties of day particles. The agglomeration of a Wyoming bentonite clay in a sterile uninoculated microbial growth medium was compared to the agglomeration in the medium inoculated with a Pseudomonas sp. In a second experiment, microorganisms were cultured in the succinate medium for 50 h and removed by centrifugation. The agglomeration of the clay in this spent was compared to sterile uninoculated medium. In both experiments, the agglomeration of the clay was greater than that of the sterile, uninoculated control. Based on these results, which indicate that this microorganism enhanced the agglomeration of the bentonite clay, it is possible to say that in the presence of microorganisms colloidal movement through a rock matrix could be reduced because of an overall increase in the size of colloidal particle agglomerates. 32 refs.

  12. Microbial corrosion of aluminum alloy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, S S; Chen, C Y; Wei, C B; Lin, Y T

    1996-11-01

    Several microbes were isolated from the contaminated fuel-oil in Taiwan and the microbial corrosion of aluminum alloy A356-T6 was tested by MIL-STD-810E test method. Penicillium sp. AM-F5 and Cladosporium resinac ATCC 22712 had significant adsorption and pitting on the surface of aluminum alloy, Pseudomonas acruginosa AM-B5 had weak adsorption and some precipitation in the bottom, and Candida sp. AM-Y1 had the less adsorption and few cavities formation on the surface. pH of the aqueous phase decreased 0.3 to 0.7 unit for 4 months of incubation. The corrosion of aluminum alloy was very significant in the cultures of Penicillium sp. AM-F2, Penicillium sp. AM-F5 and C. resinac ATCC 22712. The major metabolites in the aqueous phase with the inoculation of C. resinac were citric acid and oxalic acid, while succinic acid and fumaric acid were the minors.

  13. Linking microbial carbon utilization with microbially-derived soil organic matter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kallenbach, Cynthia M.; Grandy, A. Stuart

    2014-05-01

    Soil microbial communities are fundamental to plant C turnover, as all C inputs eventually pass through the microbial biomass. In turn, there is increasing evidence that this biomass accumulates as a significant portion of stable soil organic matter (SOM) via physiochemical interactions with the soil matrix. However, when exploring SOM dynamics, these two processes are often regarded as discrete from one another, despite potentially important linkages between microbial C utilization and the fate of that biomass C as SOM. Specifically, if stable SOM is largely comprised of microbial products, we need to better understand the soil C inputs that influence microbial biomass production and microbial C allocation. Microbial physiology, such as microbial growth efficiency (MGE), growth rate and turnover have direct influences on microbial biomass production and are highly sensitive to resource quality. Therefore, the importance of resource quality on SOM accumulation may not necessarily be a function of resistance to decay but the degree to which it optimizes microbial biomass production. To examine the relationship between microbial C utilization and microbial contributions to SOM, an ongoing 15-mo incubation experiment was set up using artificial, initially C- and microbial-free soils. Soil microcosms were constructed by mixing sand with either kaolinite or montmorillonite clays followed with a natural soil microbial inoculum. For both soil mineral treatments, weekly additions of glucose, cellobiose, or syringol are carried out, with an additional treatment of plant leachate to serve as a reference. This simplified system allows us to determine 1) if, in absence of plant-derived C, chemically complex SOM similar to natural soils can accumulate through the production of microbial residues and 2) how differences in C utilization of simple substrates, varying in energy yields, influence the quantity and chemistry of newly formed SOM. Over the course of the incubation, MGE

  14. Cell Factory Stability and Genetic Circuits for Improved Strain Development

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rugbjerg, Peter

    Development of new chemical-­‐producing microbial cell factories is an iterative trial-­and-­error process, and to screen candidate cells at high throughput, genetic biosensor systems are appealing. Each biosensor has distinct biological parameters, making modular tuning networks attractive....... However, all synthetic gene systems -­ including the target metabolic pathways themselves -­ represent a possible fitness burden to the cell and thus constitute a threat to strain stability. In this thesis, several studies served to develop genetic systems for optimizing cell factory development...... factories in future....

  15. Genetic Inventory Task Final Report. Volume 2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venkateswaran, Kasthuri; LaDuc, Myron T.; Vaishampayan, Parag

    2012-01-01

    Contaminant terrestrial microbiota could profoundly impact the scientific integrity of extraterrestrial life-detection experiments. It is therefore important to know what organisms persist on spacecraft surfaces so that their presence can be eliminated or discriminated from authentic extraterrestrial biosignatures. Although there is a growing understanding of the biodiversity associated with spacecraft and cleanroom surfaces, it remains challenging to assess the risk of these microbes confounding life-detection or sample-return experiments. A key challenge is to provide a comprehensive inventory of microbes present on spacecraft surfaces. To assess the phylogenetic breadth of microorganisms on spacecraft and associated surfaces, the Genetic Inventory team used three technologies: conventional cloning techniques, PhyloChip DNA microarrays, and 454 tag-encoded pyrosequencing, together with a methodology to systematically collect, process, and archive nucleic acids. These three analysis methods yielded considerably different results: Traditional approaches provided the least comprehensive assessment of microbial diversity, while PhyloChip and pyrosequencing illuminated more diverse microbial populations. The overall results stress the importance of selecting sample collection and processing approaches based on the desired target and required level of detection. The DNA archive generated in this study can be made available to future researchers as genetic-inventory-oriented technologies further mature.

  16. Exploiting the inter-strain divergence of Fusarium oxysporum for microbial bioprocessing of lignocellulose to bioethanol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ali, Shahin S; Khan, Mojibur; Fagan, Brian; Mullins, Ewen; Doohan, Fiona M

    2012-03-15

    Microbial bioprocessing of lignocellulose to bioethanol still poses challenges in terms of substrate catabolism. A targeted evolution-based study was undertaken to determine if inter-strain microbial variability could be exploited for bioprocessing of lignocellulose to bioethanol. The microorganism studied was Fusarium oxysporum because of its capacity to both saccharify and ferment lignocellulose. Strains of F. oxysporum were isolated and assessed for their genetic variability. Using optimised solid-state straw culture conditions, experiments were conducted that compared fungal strains in terms of their growth, enzyme activities (cellulases, xylanase and alcohol dehydrogenase) and yield of bioethanol and the undesirable by-products acetic acid and xylitol. Significant inter-strain divergence was recorded in regards to the capacity of studied F. oxysporum strains to produce alcohol from untreated straw. No correlation was observed between bioethanol synthesis and either the biomass production or microbial enzyme activity. A strong correlation was observed between both acetic acid and xylitol production and bioethanol yield. The level of diversity recorded in the alcohol production capacity among closely-related microorganism means that a targeted screening of populations of selected microbial species could greatly improve bioprocessing yields, in terms of providing both new host strains and candidate genes for the bioethanol industry.

  17. Increases in the abundance of microbial genes encoding halotolerance and photosynthesis along a sediment salinity gradient

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. C. Jeffries

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Biogeochemical cycles are driven by the metabolic activity of microbial communities, yet the environmental parameters that underpin shifts in the functional potential coded within microbial community genomes are still poorly understood. Salinity is one of the primary determinants of microbial community structure and can vary strongly along gradients within a variety of habitats. To test the hypothesis that shifts in salinity will also alter the bulk biogeochemical potential of aquatic microbial assemblages, we generated four metagenomic DNA sequence libraries from sediment samples taken along a continuous, natural salinity gradient in the Coorong lagoon, Australia, and compared them to physical and chemical parameters. A total of 392483 DNA sequences obtained from four sediment samples were generated and used to compare genomic characteristics along the gradient. The most significant shifts along the salinity gradient were in the genetic potential for halotolerance and photosynthesis, which were more highly represented in hypersaline samples. At these sites, halotolerance was achieved by an increase in genes responsible for the acquisition of compatible solutes – organic chemicals which influence the carbon, nitrogen and methane cycles of sediment. Photosynthesis gene increases were coupled to an increase in genes matching Cyanobacteria, which are responsible for mediating CO2 and nitrogen cycles. These salinity driven shifts in gene abundance will influence nutrient cycles along the gradient, controlling the ecology and biogeochemistry of the entire ecosystem.

  18. Microbial production of vitamin B12: a review and future perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, Huan; Kang, Jie; Zhang, Dawei

    2017-01-30

    Vitamin B12 is an essential vitamin that is widely used in medical and food industries. Vitamin B12 biosynthesis is confined to few bacteria and archaea, and as such its production relies on microbial fermentation. Rational strain engineering is dependent on efficient genetic tools and a detailed knowledge of metabolic pathways, regulation of which can be applied to improve product yield. Recent advances in synthetic biology and metabolic engineering have been used to efficiently construct many microbial chemical factories. Many published reviews have probed the vitamin B12 biosynthetic pathway. To maximize the potential of microbes for vitamin B12 production, new strategies and tools are required. In this review, we provide a comprehensive understanding of advances in the microbial production of vitamin B12, with a particular focus on establishing a heterologous host for the vitamin B12 production, as well as on strategies and tools that have been applied to increase microbial cobalamin production. Several worthy strategies employed for other products are also included.

  19. Increases in the abundance of microbial genes encoding halotolerance and photosynthesis along a sediment salinity gradient

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeffries, T. C.; Seymour, J. R.; Newton, K.; Smith, R. J.; Seuront, L.; Mitchell, J. G.

    2012-02-01

    Biogeochemical cycles are driven by the metabolic activity of microbial communities, yet the environmental parameters that underpin shifts in the functional potential coded within microbial community genomes are still poorly understood. Salinity is one of the primary determinants of microbial community structure and can vary strongly along gradients within a variety of habitats. To test the hypothesis that shifts in salinity will also alter the bulk biogeochemical potential of aquatic microbial assemblages, we generated four metagenomic DNA sequence libraries from sediment samples taken along a continuous, natural salinity gradient in the Coorong lagoon, Australia, and compared them to physical and chemical parameters. A total of 392483 DNA sequences obtained from four sediment samples were generated and used to compare genomic characteristics along the gradient. The most significant shifts along the salinity gradient were in the genetic potential for halotolerance and photosynthesis, which were more highly represented in hypersaline samples. At these sites, halotolerance was achieved by an increase in genes responsible for the acquisition of compatible solutes - organic chemicals which influence the carbon, nitrogen and methane cycles of sediment. Photosynthesis gene increases were coupled to an increase in genes matching Cyanobacteria, which are responsible for mediating CO2 and nitrogen cycles. These salinity driven shifts in gene abundance will influence nutrient cycles along the gradient, controlling the ecology and biogeochemistry of the entire ecosystem.

  20. Integrated omics for the identification of key functionalities in biological wastewater treatment microbial communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narayanasamy, Shaman; Muller, Emilie E L; Sheik, Abdul R; Wilmes, Paul

    2015-05-01

    Biological wastewater treatment plants harbour diverse and complex microbial communities which prominently serve as models for microbial ecology and mixed culture biotechnological processes. Integrated omic analyses (combined metagenomics, metatranscriptomics, metaproteomics and metabolomics) are currently gaining momentum towards providing enhanced understanding of community structure, function and dynamics in situ as well as offering the potential to discover novel biological functionalities within the framework of Eco-Systems Biology. The integration of information from genome to metabolome allows the establishment of associations between genetic potential and final phenotype, a feature not realizable by only considering single 'omes'. Therefore, in our opinion, integrated omics will become the future standard for large-scale characterization of microbial consortia including those underpinning biological wastewater treatment processes. Systematically obtained time and space-resolved omic datasets will allow deconvolution of structure-function relationships by identifying key members and functions. Such knowledge will form the foundation for discovering novel genes on a much larger scale compared with previous efforts. In general, these insights will allow us to optimize microbial biotechnological processes either through better control of mixed culture processes or by use of more efficient enzymes in bioengineering applications.

  1. Computational design of auxotrophy-dependent microbial biosensors for combinatorial metabolic engineering experiments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naama Tepper

    Full Text Available Combinatorial approaches in metabolic engineering work by generating genetic diversity in a microbial population followed by screening for strains with improved phenotypes. One of the most common goals in this field is the generation of a high rate chemical producing strain. A major hurdle with this approach is that many chemicals do not have easy to recognize attributes, making their screening expensive and time consuming. To address this problem, it was previously suggested to use microbial biosensors to facilitate the detection and quantification of chemicals of interest. Here, we present novel computational methods to: (i rationally design microbial biosensors for chemicals of interest based on substrate auxotrophy that would enable their high-throughput screening; (ii predict engineering strategies for coupling the synthesis of a chemical of interest with the production of a proxy metabolite for which high-throughput screening is possible via a designed bio-sensor. The biosensor design method is validated based on known genetic modifications in an array of E. coli strains auxotrophic to various amino-acids. Predicted chemical production rates achievable via the biosensor-based approach are shown to potentially improve upon those predicted by current rational strain design approaches. (A Matlab implementation of the biosensor design method is available via http://www.cs.technion.ac.il/~tomersh/tools.

  2. An Improved Method for Soil DNA Extraction to Study the Microbial Assortment within Rhizospheric Region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fatima, Faria; Pathak, Neelam; Rastogi Verma, Smita

    2014-01-01

    The need for identification of soil microbial community mainly depends on direct extraction of DNA from soil, a multifaceted environment that is a major pool for microbial genetic diversity. The soil DNA extraction procedures usually suffer from two major problems, namely, inappropriate rupturing of cells and contamination with humic substances. In the present study, five protocols for single type of rhizospheric soil were investigated and their comparison indicated that the inclusion of 120 mM phosphate buffered saline (PBS) for washing and mannitol in the lysis buffer allowed the processing of soil sample in minimal time with no specific equipment requirement. Furthermore, DNA purity and yield were also improved, which allowed the exploitation of genetic potential of soil microbes within soil sample thereby facilitating the amplification of metagenomic DNA. The effectiveness of methods was analyzed using random amplification of polymorphic DNA. The banding patterns revealed that both the abundance and the composition of indigenous microbial community depend on the DNA recovery method.

  3. Transformação genética e aplicação de glifosato na microbiota do solo, fixação biológica de nitrogênio, qualidade e segurança de grãos de soja geneticamente modificada Genetic transformation and the use glyphosate on soil microbial, biological nitrogen fixation, quality and safety of genetically modified soybean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giani Mariza Bärwald Böhm

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available A soja geneticamente modificada resistente ao herbicida glifosato (GM RR é o principal produto da biotecnologia vegetal, considerando-se a evolução da área cultivada e o consumo desse grão. Os Estados Unidos, a Argentina e o Brasil são os maiores produtores de soja GM RR. A liberação para cultivo da soja GM RR no Brasil foi efetivada com base, quase que exclusivamente, em trabalhos realizados em outros países, sem a devida validação nas condições edafoclimáticas locais. Nesse contexto, buscou-se coletar e analisar os principais trabalhos que versam sobre impacto ambiental, metabolismo da planta, qualidade e segurança da soja GM RR tratada e não tratada com glifosato. De modo geral, os trabalhos analisados apresentam algumas características comuns: a avaliam poucas variáveis; e b inferem, a partir de simulação com ensaios em casa de vegetação ou in vitro, possíveis respostas no cultivo comercial. Embora ainda escassos, os estudos realizados apontam para o fato de que a transformação genética não afeta os microrganismos do solo, nem a fixação biológica de nitrogênio, nem a composição dos grãos. O fator que pode afetar essas variáveis é a aplicação do glifosato no controle de plantas daninhas, ou seja, os riscos de perigo ao ambiente e à segurança dos produtos derivados dessa matéria-prima se devem ao insumo aplicado durante o cultivo, e não à transformação genética propriamente dita.The genetically modified soybean resistant to glyphosate (GM RR is the main product of plant biotechnology, considering the evolution of the area cultivated and the use of this grain. EUA, Argentina and Brazil are the largest producers of GM RR. The release of GM RR soybean cultivation in Brazil was done based on researches that were accomplished in other countries without the validation of the same edaphoclimatic conditions. In this context, the main researches about environmental impact, plant metabolism, quality and

  4. Microbial production of lactic acid: the latest development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juturu, Veeresh; Wu, Jin Chuan

    2016-12-01

    Lactic acid is an important platform chemical for producing polylactic acid (PLA) and other value-added products. It is naturally produced by a wide spectrum of microbes including bacteria, yeast and filamentous fungi. In general, bacteria ferment C5 and C6 sugars to lactic acid by either homo- or hetero-fermentative mode. Xylose isomerase, phosphoketolase, transaldolase, l- and d-lactate dehydrogenases are the key enzymes that affect the ways of lactic acid production. Metabolic engineering of microbial strains are usually needed to produce lactic acid from unconventional carbon sources. Production of d-LA has attracted much attention due to the demand for producing thermostable PLA, but large scale production of d-LA has not yet been commercialized. Thermophilic Bacillus coagulans strains are able to produce l-lactic acid from lignocellulose sugars homo-fermentatively under non-sterilized conditions, but the lack of genetic tools for metabolically engineering them severely affects their development for industrial applications. Pre-treatment of agriculture biomass to obtain fermentable sugars is a pre-requisite for utilization of the huge amounts of agricultural biomass to produce lactic acid. The major challenge is to obtain quality sugars of high concentrations in a cost effective-way. To avoid or minimize the use of neutralizing agents during fermentation, genetically engineering the strains to make them resist acidic environment and produce lactic acid at low pH would be very helpful for reducing the production cost of lactic acid.

  5. Genetic engineering, medicine and medical genetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Motulsky, A G

    1984-01-01

    The impact of DNA technology in the near future will be on the manufacture of biologic agents and reagents that will lead to improved therapy and diagnosis. The use of DNA technology for prenatal and preclinical diagnosis in genetic diseases is likely to affect management of genetic diseases considerably. New and old questions regarding selective abortion and the psychosocial impact of early diagnosis of late appearing diseases and of genetic susceptibilities are being raised. Somatic therapy with isolated genes to treat disease has not been achieved. True germinal genetic engineering is far off for humans but may find applications in animal agriculture.

  6. Uncharted Microbial World: Microbes and Their Activities in the Environment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Harwood, Caroline; Buckley, Merry

    2007-12-31

    systems with features like clear physical boundaries, limited microbial diversity, and manipulability with the goal of understanding fundamental principles that may apply to more complex systems. A great deal of microbial genetic and phenotypic diversity remains to be explored, and the commercial and medical potential locked up in these unknowns should compel the field to move forward. Future microbiology research will build on the successes of the past using new techniques and approaches. Uncultivated microbes hold great promise for industry, medicine, and the recycling of precious resources, and research and technology must make inroads in overcoming the barriers that prevent their study. In many cases, we will no longer be able to rely on isolated, pure cultures of microorganisms, but must use communities of microorganisms, which presently are poorly understood. Indeed, community-level studies can benefit from deconstructing microbial communities and analyzing the component members separately, but this is not feasible in every system. The effects of perturbation on microbial communities also require study. Humans rely on the services of microbes in innumerable ways, but we have little or no predictive understanding of how microbial communities respond to disturbance. Research must address current limitations in detecting microscale interactions among microbes by enhancing current technologies and fostering new microscopic tools, biosensors, and gas sensors for appropriate small scales. Genomics, which has enabled great progress in microbiology research of individual species, must be applied to communities of microorganisms. This will require improved methods of DNA extraction and amplification from environmental samples and improved strategies for DNA sequence assembly. In the future, genome sequencing efforts should continue the exploration of evolutionarily diverse microbes, as well as help reveal the mechanisms by which closely related microbes evolve. Technological

  7. The role of microbial diversity in the dynamics and stability of global methane consumption: microbial methane oxidation as a model-system for microbial ecology (ESF EuroDiversity METHECO)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frenzel, P.; Metheco-Team

    2009-04-01

    Ecosystems collectively determine biogeochemical processes that regulate the Earth System. Loss of biodiversity is detrimental to ecosystems and therefore has been a central issue for environmental scientists. Although microorganisms form a major part of the Earth's biomass and biodiversity, and have a critical role in biogeochemistry and ecosystem functioning, they do not feature highly in ongoing debates about global biodiversity loss, global change and conservations issues. The neglect of microbial diversity in conservation issues is because microbial communities are regarded as being highly redundant, omnipresent, and therefore inextinguishable. This, however, is a misconception. Recently, the application of advanced molecular techniques has indicated that microbial communities display habitat preferences and are not universally distributed. Even the highly diverse microbial communities in soils can be affected by agricultural use, indicating that genetic erosion may potentially affect these communities as well. Moreover, many important environmental functions are catalyzed by specific groups of microbes with a very narrow ecological range. Recovery of these functional microbial communities after disturbance may take decades. Even if the species making up the community do not become extinct and eventually re-colonize an environment, the function and service to the biosphere is lost long enough to exert permanent, irreversible damage to the environment. Considering the global importance of microbes, combined with our ignorance of how the composition and functioning of these communities is affected, necessitates the assessment of the vulnerability and the resilience of microbial diversity. The latter is a pressing concern in biodiversity research and conservation policy, urgently needing attention in order to be able to anticipate environmental challenges we are facing. Our general hypothesis is: microbial diversity is linked to important ecosystem services and

  8. Genetic Engineering Strategies for Enhanced Biodiesel Production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hegde, Krishnamoorthy; Chandra, Niharika; Sarma, Saurabh Jyoti; Brar, Satinder Kaur; Veeranki, Venkata Dasu

    2015-07-01

    The focus on biodiesel research has shown a tremendous growth over the last few years. Several microbial and plant sources are being explored for the sustainable biodiesel production to replace the petroleum diesel. Conventional methods of biodiesel production have several limitations related to yield and quality, which led to development of new engineering strategies to improve the biodiesel production in plants, and microorganisms. Substantial progress in utilizing algae, yeast, and Escherichia coli for the renewable production of biodiesel feedstock via genetic engineering of fatty acid metabolic pathways has been reported in the past few years. However, in most of the cases, the successful commercialization of such engineering strategies for sustainable biodiesel production is yet to be seen. This paper systematically presents the drawbacks in the conventional methods for biodiesel production and an exhaustive review on the present status of research in genetic engineering strategies for production of biodiesel in plants, and microorganisms. Further, we summarize the technical challenges need to be tackled to make genetic engineering technology economically sustainable. Finally, the need and prospects of genetic engineering technology for the sustainable biodiesel production and the recommendations for the future research are discussed.

  9. The population genetics of evolutionary rescue.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H Allen Orr

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Evolutionary rescue occurs when a population that is threatened with extinction by an environmental change adapts to the change sufficiently rapidly to survive. Here we extend the mathematical theory of evolutionary rescue. In particular, we model evolutionary rescue to a sudden environmental change when adaptation involves evolution at a single locus. We consider adaptation using either new mutations or alleles from the standing genetic variation that begin rare. We obtain several results: i the total probability of evolutionary rescue from either new mutation or standing variation; ii the conditions under which rescue is more likely to involve a new mutation versus an allele from the standing genetic variation; iii a mathematical description of the U-shaped curve of total population size through time, conditional on rescue; and iv the time until the average population size begins to rebound as well as the minimal expected population size experienced by a rescued population. Our analysis requires taking into account a subtle population-genetic effect (familiar from the theory of genetic hitchhiking that involves "oversampling" of those lucky alleles that ultimately sweep to high frequency. Our results are relevant to conservation biology, experimental microbial evolution, and medicine (e.g., the dynamics of antibiotic resistance.

  10. Effects of Elevated Carbon Dioxide and Salinity on the Microbial Diversity in Lithifying Microbial Mats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven R. Ahrendt

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide (CO2 are rising at an accelerated rate resulting in changes in the pH and carbonate chemistry of the world’s oceans. However, there is uncertainty regarding the impact these changing environmental conditions have on carbonate-depositing microbial communities. Here, we examine the effects of elevated CO2, three times that of current atmospheric levels, on the microbial diversity associated with lithifying microbial mats. Lithifying microbial mats are complex ecosystems that facilitate the trapping and binding of sediments, and/or the precipitation of calcium carbonate into organosedimentary structures known as microbialites. To examine the impact of rising CO2 and resulting shifts in pH on lithifying microbial mats, we constructed growth chambers that could continually manipulate and monitor the mat environment. The microbial diversity of the various treatments was compared using 16S rRNA gene pyrosequencing. The results indicated that elevated CO2 levels during the six month exposure did not profoundly alter the microbial diversity, community structure, or carbonate precipitation in the microbial mats; however some key taxa, such as the sulfate-reducing bacteria Deltasulfobacterales, were enriched. These results suggest that some carbonate depositing ecosystems, such as the microbialites, may be more resilient to anthropogenic-induced environmental change than previously thought.

  11. Microbial Communities and Electrochemical Performance of Titanium-Based Anodic Electrodes in a Microbial Fuel Cell

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Michaelidou, U.; Heijne, ter A.; Euverink, G.J.W.; Hamelers, H.V.M.; Stams, A.J.M.; Geelhoed, J.S.

    2011-01-01

    Four types of titanium (Ti)-based electrodes were tested in the same microbial fuel cell (MFC) anodic compartment. Their electrochemical performances and the dominant microbial communities of the electrode biofilms were compared. The electrodes were identical in shape, macroscopic surface area, and

  12. Microbial electrosynthesis of hydrogen peroxide in microbial reverse-electrodialysis electrolysis cell

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Li, Xiaohu; Angelidaki, Irini; Zhang, Yifeng

    2016-01-01

    Microbial reverse-electrodialysis electrolysis cell (MREC) as a novel type of microbial electrochemical technologies has been proposed to produce H2 and CH4. In this study, we developed MREC to produce the strong oxidant H2O2. In the MREC, electrical potential generated by the exoelectrogens and ...

  13. Relationship between microbial activity and microbial community structure in six full-scale anaerobic digesters

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Regueiro, L.; Veiga, P.; Figueroa, M.; Alonso-Gutierrez, J.; Stams, A.J.M.; Lema, J.M.; Carballa, M.

    2012-01-01

    High activity levels and balanced anaerobic microbial communities are necessary to attain proper anaerobic digestion performance. Therefore, this work was focused on the kinetic performance and the microbial community structure of six full-scale anaerobic digesters and one lab-scale co-digester. Hyd

  14. Ohmic resistance affects microbial community and electrochemical kinetics in a multi-anode microbial electrochemical cell

    Science.gov (United States)

    Multi-anode microbial electrochemical cells (MXCs) are considered as one of the most promising configurations for scale-up of MXCs, but fundamental understanding of anode kinetics governing current density is limited in the MXCs. In this study we first assessed microbial communi...

  15. MICROBIAL CELL-SURFACE HYDROPHOBICITY - THE INVOLVEMENT OF ELECTROSTATIC INTERACTIONS IN MICROBIAL ADHESION TO HYDROCARBONS (MATH)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    GEERTSEMADOORNBUSCH, GI; VANDERMEI, HC; BUSSCHER, HJ

    Microbial adhesion to hydrocarbons (MATH) is the most commonly used method to determine microbial cell surface hydrophobicity. Since, however, the assay is based on adhesion, it is questionable whether the results reflect only the cell surface hydrophobicity or an interplay of hydrophobicity and

  16. Astrobiological Significance of Microbial Extremophiles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pikuta, Elena V.; Hoover, Richard B.

    2007-01-01

    The microflora of the cryosphere of planet Earth provides the best analogs for life forms that might be found in the permafrost or polar ice caps of Mars, near the surface of the cometary nuclei, or in the liquid water beneath and the ice crusts of icy moons of Jupiter and Saturn. The importance of study alkaliphilic microorganisms for astrobiology was enhanced by the findings of abundant carbonates and carbonate globules rimmed with possibly biogenic magnetites in association with the putative microfossils in the ALH84001 meteorite. Although the ALH84001 "nanofossils" were to small and simple to be unambiguously recognized as biogenic, they stimulated Astrobiology research and studies of microbial extremophiles and biomarkers in ancient rocks and meteorites. Recent studies of CI and CM carbonaceous meteorites have resulted in the detection of the well-preserved mineralized remains of coccoidal and filamentous microorganisms in cyanobacterial mats. Energy Dispersive X-ray Analysis has shown anomalous biogenic element ratios clearly indicating they are not recent biological contaminants. This paper reviews microbial extremophiles in context of their significance to Astrobiology. The study of halophilic microorganisms was started from work with saline soils and lakes, and one of the record of good growth for Haloferax mediterranei was shown at 30 percent NaC1. Although alkali-tolerant nitrifying bacteria had previously been reported, the first described alkaliphilic microorganism was the bacterium Streptococcus faecalis. Halophilic and alkaliphilic forms are relevant to conditions that might be found in closed impact basins and craters on Mars filled with evaporite deposits. The first obligately acidophilic bacterium described was Acidithiobacillus ferrooxydans (formally Thiobacillus ferrooxidans). Later thermophilic lithotrophic acidophiles were found, and the hyperacidophilic moderately thermophilic species of the genus Picrophilus were found to grow at negative p

  17. Microbial activity in soils following steam treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richardson, Ruth E; James, C Andrew; Bhupathiraju, Vishvesh K; Alvarez-Cohen, Lisa

    2002-01-01

    Steam enhanced extraction (SEE) is an aquifer remediation technique that can be effective at removing the bulk of non-aqueous phase liquid (NAPL) contamination from the subsurface, particularly highly volatile contaminants. However, low volatility compounds such as polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are less efficiently removed by this process. This research evaluated the effects of steam injection on soil microbial activity, community structure, and the potential for biodegradation of contaminants following steam treatment. Three different soils were evaluated: a laboratory-prepared microbially-enriched soil, soil from a creosote contaminated field site, and soil from a chlorinated solvent and waste oil contaminated field site. Results from field-scale steaming are also presented. Microbial activity before and after steam treatment was evaluated using direct epifluorescent microscopy (DEM) using the respiratory activity dye 5-cyano-2,3, ditolyl tetrazolium chloride (CTC) in conjunction with the fluorochrome 5-(4,6-dichlorotriazinyl) aminofluorescein (DTAF) to yield a quantitative assessment of active and total microbial numbers. DEM results indicate that steamed soils that were analyzed while still hot exhibited microbial activity levels that were below detection. However, soil samples that were slowly cooled, more closely reflecting the conditions of applied SEE, exhibited microbial activity levels that were comparable to presteamed soils. Samples from a field-site where steam was applied continuously for 6 weeks also showed high levels of microbial activity following cooling. The metabolic capabilities of the steamed communities were investigated by measuring cell growth in enrichment cultures on various substrates. These studies provided evidence that organisms capable of biodegradation were among the mesophilic populations that survived steam treatment. Fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) analysis of the soils with domain-level rRNA probes suggest

  18. Sediment Interfaces: Ecotones on a Microbial Scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borchers, M. R.; Colwell, F. S.; D'Angelo, G.; Thurber, A. R.; Graw, M. F.

    2015-12-01

    Ecotones - transitions between different biomes - often support greater faunal diversity than the adjacent ecological systems. For subseafloor microorganisms, defined geological and chemical gradients have been shown to affect population sizes and community structure, but the role that sediment interfaces play is still unclear. Here, we test the hypothesis that zones of transition between two distinct sediment types increase microbial diversity and change community composition. Concurrently, we explore those factors that drive deep-subsurface microbial community structure (e.g., depth, interstitial water chemistry, methane concentrations, clay content). Samples from IODP Expedition 349 - South China Sea Tectonics - had interfaces of either ash/clay or turbidite/clay boundaries sampled , DNA extracted, and the 16S rRNA gene analyzed on an Illumina MiSeq platform. Initial analyses reveal that microbial communities in sediment samples are distinct from communities in drilling fluid, indicating that contamination is unlikely. In four of the eight complete interfaces currently analyzed we found an increase in diversity (based on the chao1 index), in certain cases doubling the diversity of the adjacent rock types. The pattern was not uniform across all interfaces. While some posit that ecotones provide a mixing of the two adjacent communities, we were surprised to find an abundance (mean = 392 OTUs) of unique microbial taxa within the ecotone itself when compared to adjacent sediment (mean=282 unique OTUs). Thus while diversity was not uniformly increased in ecotones, the interface led to divergent microbial communities that were not simply mixtures of those adjacent. We will discuss the ability of abiotic factors in explaining the among ecotone variance that we observed. Our investigation helps to characterize the factors that drive microbial community structure of the subseafloor while highlighting the need to focus on habitat heterogeneity at a scale pertinent to

  19. Non-microbial methane emissions from soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Bin; Hou, Longyu; Liu, Wei; Wang, Zhiping

    2013-12-01

    Traditionally, methane (CH4) is anaerobically formed by methanogenic archaea. However, non-microbial CH4 can also be produced from geologic processes, biomass burning, animals, plants, and recently identified soils. Recognition of non-microbial CH4 emissions from soils remains inadequate. To better understand this phenomenon, a series of laboratory incubations were conducted to examine effects of temperature, water, and hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) on CH4 emissions under both aerobic and anaerobic conditions using autoclaved (30 min, 121 °C) soils and aggregates (>2000 μm, A1; 2000-250 μm, A2; 250-53 μm, M1; and A2 > A1 > M2 and C-based emission an order of M2 > M1 > A1 > A2, demonstrating that both organic carbon quantity and property are responsible for CH4 emissions from soils at the scale of aggregate. Whole soil-based order of A2 > A1 > M1 > M2 suggests that non-microbial CH4 release from forest soils is majorly contributed by macro-aggregates (i.e., >250 μm). The underlying mechanism is that organic matter through thermal treatment, photolysis, or reactions with free radicals produce CH4, which, in essence, is identical with mechanisms of other non-microbial sources, indicating that non-microbial CH4 production may be a widespread phenomenon in nature. This work further elucidates the importance of non-microbial CH4 formation which should be distinguished from the well-known microbial CH4 formation in order to define both roles in the atmospheric CH4 global budget.

  20. Microbial bioenergetics of coral-algal interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ty N.F. Roach

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Human impacts are causing ecosystem phase shifts from coral- to algal-dominated reef systems on a global scale. As these ecosystems undergo transition, there is an increased incidence of coral-macroalgal interactions. Mounting evidence indicates that the outcome of these interaction events is, in part, governed by microbially mediated dynamics. The allocation of available energy through different trophic levels, including the microbial food web, determines the outcome of these interactions and ultimately shapes the benthic community structure. However, little is known about the underlying thermodynamic mechanisms involved in these trophic energy transfers. This study utilizes a novel combination of methods including calorimetry, flow cytometry, and optical oxygen measurements, to provide a bioenergetic analysis of coral-macroalgal interactions in a controlled aquarium setting. We demonstrate that the energetic demands of microbial communities at the coral-algal interaction interface are higher than in the communities associated with either of the macroorganisms alone. This was evident through higher microbial power output (energy use per unit time and lower oxygen concentrations at interaction zones compared to areas distal from the interface. Increases in microbial power output and lower oxygen concentrations were significantly correlated with the ratio of heterotrophic to autotrophic microbes but not the total microbial abundance. These results suggest that coral-algal interfaces harbor higher proportions of heterotrophic microbes that are optimizing maximal power output, as opposed to yield. This yield to power shift offers a possible thermodynamic mechanism underlying the transition from coral- to algal-dominated reef ecosystems currently being observed worldwide. As changes in the power output of an ecosystem are a significant indicator of the current state of the system, this analysis provides a novel and insightful means to quantify

  1. Hydrological controls on glacially exported microbial assemblages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dubnick, Ashley; Kazemi, Sina; Sharp, Martin; Wadham, Jemma; Hawkings, Jon; Beaton, Alexander; Lanoil, Brian

    2017-05-01

    The Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS) exports approximately 400 km3 of freshwater annually to downstream freshwater and marine ecosystems. These meltwaters originate in a wide range of well-defined habitats that can be associated with very different physical environments within the ice sheet, ranging from oxygenated surface environments that are exposed to light and supplied with nutrients from atmospheric/aeolian sources to subglacial environments that are permanently dark, isolated from the atmosphere, and potentially anoxic. Hydrological conditions in the latter likely favor prolonged rock-water contact. The seasonally evolving hydrological system that drains meltwaters from the GrIS connects these distinct microbial habitats and exports the microbes contained within them to downstream ecosystems. The microbial assemblages exported in glacier meltwater may have an impact on downstream ecosystem function and development. We explored how the seasonal development of a glacial drainage system influences the character of microbial assemblages exported from the GrIS by monitoring the seasonal changes in hydrology, water chemistry, and microbial assemblage composition of meltwaters draining from a glacier in southwest Greenland. We found that the microbial assemblages exported in meltwaters varied in response to glacier hydrological flow path characteristics. Whether or not meltwaters passed through the subglacial environment was the first-order control on the composition of the microbial assemblages exported from the glacier, while water source (i.e., supraglacial or extraglacial) and subglacial residence times were second-order controls. Glacier hydrology therefore plays a fundamental role in determining the microbial exports from glaciated watersheds.

  2. Microbial Metallomics: A Bioinorganic Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elliott, S. J.

    2004-12-01

    The term "metallome", as described by R.J.P. Williams is synonymous with the instantaneously determined concentration of all inorganic species within a cellular system [1]. Here, we refine this definition to specify that metallomics should reflect not only the overall content of inorganic species in cells, but the chemical identity of such species (i.e., in both ligated and unligated states) a well as their location. Of particular interest to the metallobiochemist are the roles inorganic species play in the up- and down-regulation of protein expression in cells. Thus, we consider that a fully realized "metallome" will reflect the biochemical pathways associated with metal ion speciation and localization within cells. Here we will describe currently proposed strategy and methodology that is used by the Elliott Lab of Boston University to capture snapshots of the proteomic and metallomic landscape of a variety of microbial systems. Two such systems will be described in some detail. The first is Methylococcus capsulatus (Bath), a methanotrophic organism that is known to undergo dramatic morphological changes upon the introduction of varying concentrations of Fe and Cu in the growth medium. In particular, the introduction of increasing concentrations of copper induces the expression of extensive intracytosolic membranes [2]. The Fe:Cu ratio also controls the expression of gene transcripts for soluble and particulate methane monooxygenase enzymes. This provides a unique opportunity to explore metal sensing, uptake, speciation and localization in methanotrophs. A developing model of protein expression and metal input will be discussed. Specific metallomic experiments regarding Shewanella oneidensis will also be discussed, in the context of an ongoing effort to understand how this organism can utilize a dazzling array of electron acceptors, including Fe(III), Mn(IV), nitrite, DMSO, TMAO, and fumarate. [1] R.J.P. Williams, Coord. Chem. Rev., 216:583-595 (2001). [2] C

  3. Identification and assembly of genomes and genetic elements in complex metagenomic samples without using reference genomes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Henrik Bjørn; Almeida, Mathieu; Juncker, Agnieszka

    2014-01-01

    , such as particular bacterial strains or viruses, remains a largely unsolved problem. Here we present a method, based on binning co-abundant genes across a series of metagenomic samples, that enables comprehensive discovery of new microbial organisms, viruses and co-inherited genetic entities and aids assembly...... affiliations between MGS and hundreds of viruses or genetic entities. Our method provides the means for comprehensive profiling of the diversity within complex metagenomic samples....

  4. Microbial Community Analysis of a Single Chamber Microbial Fuel Cell Using Potato Wastewater

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhen Li; Rishika Haynes; Eugene Sato; Malcolm Shields; Yoshiko Fujita; Chikashi Sato

    2014-04-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) convert chemical energy to electrical energy via bioelectrochemical reactions mediated by microorganisms. We investigated the diversity of the microbial community in an air cathode single chamber MFC that utilized potato-process wastewater as substrate. Terminal Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism (T-RFLP) results indicated that the bacterial communities on the anode, cathode, control electrode, and MFC bulk fluid were similar, but differed dramatically from that of the anaerobic domestic sludge and potato wastewater inoculum. The 16S rDNA sequencing results showed that microbial species detected on the anode were predominantly within the phyla of Proteobacteria, Firmicutes, and Bacteroidetes. Fluorescent microscopy results indicated that there was a clear enhancement of biofilm formation on the anode. Results of this study could help improve understanding of the complexity of microbial communities and optimize the microbial composition for generating electricity by MFCs that utilize potato wastewater.

  5. Impact of Microbial Inoculants on Microbial Quantity, Enzyme Activity and Available Nutrient Content in Paddy Soil

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Liu Xiao-jie; Duan Xue-jiao; Ma Na; Sun Tao; Xu Jing-gang

    2015-01-01

    The experiment was conducted to study the impact of application of microbial inoculants, compared with no microbial fertilizer, on enzyme activity, microbial biomass and available nutrient contents in paddy soil in Heilongjiang Province. The application ofsoil phosphorus activator was able to increase the quantity of bacteria and fungi in soil, but its effect on actinomycetes in soil was not significant. The application of microbial inoculants increased the urease and sucrase activities in soil over the growing season, but only at the maturing stage soil acid phosphatase activity was enhanced with the applying soil phosphorus activator. The application of soil phosphorus activator increased alkali-hydrolyzable nitrogen and available phosphorus contents in soil, but did not increase available potassium content in soil. The optimal microbial inoculant application rate as applied as soil phosphorus activator was 7.5 kg•hm-2.

  6. The functional potential of microbial communities in hydraulic fracturing source water and produced water from natural gas extraction characterized by metagenomic sequencing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohan, Arvind Murali; Bibby, Kyle J; Lipus, Daniel; Hammack, Richard W; Gregory, Kelvin B

    2014-01-01

    Microbial activity in produced water from hydraulic fracturing operations can lead to undesired environmental impacts and increase gas production costs. However, the metabolic profile of these microbial communities is not well understood. Here, for the first time, we present results from a shotgun metagenome of microbial communities in both hydraulic fracturing source water and wastewater produced by hydraulic fracturing. Taxonomic analyses showed an increase in anaerobic/facultative anaerobic classes related to Clostridia, Gammaproteobacteria, Bacteroidia and Epsilonproteobacteria in produced water as compared to predominantly aerobic Alphaproteobacteria in the fracturing source water. The metabolic profile revealed a relative increase in genes responsible for carbohydrate metabolism, respiration, sporulation and dormancy, iron acquisition and metabolism, stress response and sulfur metabolism in the produced water samples. These results suggest that microbial communities in produced water have an increased genetic ability to handle stress, which has significant implications for produced water management, such as disinfection.

  7. Basic genetics for dermatologists

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muthu Sendhil Kumaran

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available During the past few decades, advances in the field of molecular genetics have enriched us in understanding the pathogenesis of diseases, their identification, and appropriate therapeutic interventions. In the last 20 years, genetic basis of more than 350 monogenic skin diseases have been elucidated and is counting. The widespread use of molecular genetics as a tool in diagnosis is not practiced routinely due to genetic heterogenicity, limited access and low sensitivity. In this review, we have presented the very basics of genetics so as to enable dermatologists to have working understanding of medical genetics.

  8. Microbial communities inhabiting hypersaline microbial mats from the Abu Dhabi sabkha

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrade, Luiza; Dutton, Kirsten; Paul, Andreas; van der Land, Cees; Sherry, Angela; Lokier, Stephen; Head, Ian

    2017-04-01

    Microbial mats are organo-sedimentary structures that are typically found in areas with extreme environmental conditions. Since these ecosystems are considered to be representative of the oldest forms of life on Earth, the study of microbial mats can inform our understanding of the development of life early in the history of our planet. In this study, we used hypersaline microbial mats from the Abu Dhabi sabkha (coastal salt flats). Cores of microbial mats (ca. 90 mm depth) were collected within an intertidal region. The cores were sliced into layers 2-3 mm thick and genomic DNA was extracted from each layer. A fragment of the 16S rRNA encoding gene was amplified in all DNA extracts, using barcoded primers, and the amplicons sequenced with the Ion Torrent platform to investigate the composition of the microbial communities down the depth of the cores. Preliminary results revealed a high proportion of Archaea (15.5-40.8% abundance) in all layers, with Halobacteria appearing to be more significant in the first 40 mm (0.4-10.3% of the total microbial community). Members of the Deltaproteobacteria were dominant in almost all layers of the microbial mat (≤ 48.6% relative abundance); however this dominance was not reflected in the first 8 mm, where the abundance was less than 2%. Chloroflexi and Anaerolinea, representing 93% of bacterial abundance, dominated the first 8 mm depth and decreased at greater depth (≤ 3% relative abundance). Cyanobacteria were found only in the top 10 mm, with unexpected low abundance (≤ 3% of the total number of reads). These results show a vertical zonation of microbial communities and processes in the microbial mats. Further analyses are underway to investigate if these patterns are repeated at other sites along a transect of the sabkha, and to relate the microbial composition to the physical-chemical conditions of the sites.

  9. Investigations into the metabolic diversity of microorganisms as part of microbial diversity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Leadbetter, Jared [California Inst. of Technology (CalTech), Pasadena, CA (United States)

    2016-07-25

    DOE funds supported a key portion of the MBL Microbial Diversity (Woods Hole) program across 6 complete summers. The initial 4 years of the funded period were overseen by two co-Directors, Daniel Buckley (Cornell) and Steve Zinder (Cornell), who then completed their term. The final 2 summers were overseen by 2 new co-Directors, Jared R. Leadbetter (Caltech) and Dianne Newman (Caltech). The 6 funded summer iterations of the course included the incorporation of new themes such as single cell approaches applied to natural microbial communities (cell separation and sorting, genome amplification from single cells, and the use of Nano-SIMS to examine assimilation of carbon and nitrogen from isotopically labeled substrates into single cells), genetics and genomics on bacteria freshly isolated during the course of the programs, quantitative systems biology, and modern quantitative light microscopy.

  10. The role of early life nutrition in the establishment of gastrointestinal microbial composition and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Erin C; Wang, Mei; Donovan, Sharon M

    2017-03-04

    The development of the human infant intestinal microbiota is a sequential process that begins in utero and continues during the first 2 to 3 years of life. Microbial composition and diversity are shaped by host genetics and multiple environmental factors, of which diet is a principal contributor. An understanding of this process is of clinical importance as the microbiota acquired in early life influence gastrointestinal, immune and neural development, and reduced microbial diversity or dysbiosis during infancy is associated with disorders in infancy and later childhood. The goal of this article was to review the published literature that used culture-independent methods to describe the development of the gastrointestinal microbiota in breast- and formula-fed human infants as well as the impact of prebiotic and probiotic addition to infant formula, and the addition of solid foods.

  11. Microbial diversity of landslide soils assessed by RFLP and SSCP fingerprints.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guida, Marco; Cannavacciuolo, Paolo Losanno; Cesarano, Mara; Borra, Marco; Biffali, Elio; D'Alessandro, Raffaella; De Felice, Bruna

    2014-08-01

    Landslides are a significant component of natural disasters in most countries around the world. Understanding these destructive phenomena through the analysis of possible correlations between microbial communities and the alteration of the soil responsible for landslides is important in order to reduce their negative consequences. To address this issue, bacterial and fungal communities in soils triggering landslides in Termini-Nerano and Massa Lubrense-Nerano (Naples, Italy) were analysed by genetic profiling techniques. Fingerprints were generated by single-strand conformation polymorphisms (SSCP) and random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD). The microbial community in both soil types was enriched in species which could contribute to the degradation process occurring during landslides, forming biofilms and leading to the transformation or the formation of minerals. Indeed, some of the identified bacteria were found to favour the transformation of clay minerals. These findings suggest a possible relationship between bacterial and fungal community-colonising soils and the occurrence of landslides.

  12. Microbial Cell Factories for the Production of Terpenoid Flavor and Fragrance Compounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schempp, Florence M; Drummond, Laura; Buchhaupt, Markus; Schrader, Jens

    2017-04-18

    Terpenoid flavor and fragrance compounds are of high interest to the aroma industry. Microbial production offers an alternative sustainable access to the desired terpenoids independent of natural sources. Genetically engineered microorganisms can be used to synthesize terpenoids from cheap and renewable resources. Due to its modular architecture, terpenoid biosynthesis is especially well suited for the microbial cell factory concept: a platform host engineered for a high flux toward the central C5 prenyl diphosphate precursors enables the production of a broad range of target terpenoids just by varying the pathway modules converting the C5 intermediates to the product of interest. In this review typical terpenoid flavor and fragrance compounds marketed or under development by biotech and aroma companies are given, and the specificities of the aroma market are discussed. The main part of this work focuses on key strategies and recent advances to engineer microbes to become efficient terpenoid producers.

  13. Engineering PQS biosynthesis pathway for enhancement of bioelectricity production in pseudomonas aeruginosa microbial fuel cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Victor Bochuan Wang

    Full Text Available The biosynthesis of the redox shuttle, phenazines, in Pseudomonas aeruginosa, an ubiquitous microorganism in wastewater microflora, is regulated by the 2-heptyl-3,4-dihydroxyquinoline (PQS quorum-sensing system. However, PQS inhibits anaerobic growth of P. aeruginosa. We constructed a P. aeruginosa strain that produces higher concentrations of phenazines under anaerobic conditions by over-expressing the PqsE effector in a PQS negative ΔpqsC mutant. The engineered strain exhibited an improved electrical performance in microbial fuel cells (MFCs and potentiostat-controlled electrochemical cells with an approximate five-fold increase of maximum current density relative to the parent strain. Electrochemical analysis showed that the current increase correlates with an over-synthesis of phenazines. These results therefore demonstrate that targeting microbial cell-to-cell communication by genetic engineering is a suitable technique to improve power output of bioelectrochemical systems.

  14. A hybrid of bees algorithm and flux balance analysis (BAFBA) for the optimisation of microbial strains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choon, Yee Wen; Mohamad, Mohd Saberi; Deris, Safaai; Illias, Rosli Md

    2014-01-01

    The development of microbial production system has become popular in recent years as microbial hosts offer a number of unique advantages for both native and heterologous small-molecules. However, the main drawback is low yield or productivity of the desired products. Optimisation algorithms are implemented in previous works to identify the effects of gene knockout. Nevertheless, the previous works faced performance issue. Thus, a hybrid of Bees Algorithm and Flux Balance Analysis (BAFBA) is proposed in this paper to improve the performance in predicting optimal sets of gene deletion for maximising the growth rate and production yield of certain metabolite. This paper involves two datasets which are E. coli and S. cerevisiae. The list of knockout genes, growth rate and production yield after the deletion are the results from the experiments. BAFBA presents better results compared to the other methods and the identified list may be useful in solving genetic engineering problems.

  15. Anode microbial communities produced by changing from microbial fuel cell to microbial electrolysis cell operation using two different wastewaters

    KAUST Repository

    Kiely, Patrick D.

    2011-01-01

    Conditions in microbial fuel cells (MFCs) differ from those in microbial electrolysis cells (MECs) due to the intrusion of oxygen through the cathode and the release of H2 gas into solution. Based on 16S rRNA gene clone libraries, anode communities in reactors fed acetic acid decreased in species richness and diversity, and increased in numbers of Geobacter sulfurreducens, when reactors were shifted from MFCs to MECs. With a complex source of organic matter (potato wastewater), the proportion of Geobacteraceae remained constant when MFCs were converted into MECs, but the percentage of clones belonging to G. sulfurreducens decreased and the percentage of G. metallireducens clones increased. A dairy manure wastewater-fed MFC produced little power, and had more diverse microbial communities, but did not generate current in an MEC. These results show changes in Geobacter species in response to the MEC environment and that higher species diversity is not correlated with current. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

  16. Nitrogen cycle in microbial mats: completely unknown?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coban, O.; Bebout, B.

    2015-12-01

    Microbial mats are thought to have originated around 3.7 billion years ago, most likely in the areas around submarine hydrothermal vents, which supplied a source of energy in the form of reduced chemical species from the Earth's interior. Active hydrothermal vents are also believed to exist on Jupiter's moon Europa, Saturn's moon Enceladus, and on Mars, earlier in that planet's history. Microbial mats have been an important force in the maintenance of Earth's ecosystems and the first photosynthesis was also originated there. Microbial mats are believed to exhibit most, if not all, biogeochemical processes that exist in aquatic ecosystems, due to the presence of different physiological groups of microorganisms therein. While most microbially mediated biogeochemical transformations have been shown to occur within microbial mats, the nitrogen cycle in the microbial mats has received very little study in spite of the fact that nitrogen usually limits growth in marine environments. We will present the first results in the determination of a complete nitrogen budget for a photosynthetic microbial mat. Both in situ sources and sinks of nitrogen in photosynthetic microbial mats are being measured using stable isotope techniques. Our work has a particular focus on recently described, but poorly understood, processes, e.g., anammox and dissimilatory nitrate reduction, and an emphasis on understanding the role that nitrogen cycling may play in generating biogenic nitrogen isotopic signatures and biomarker molecules. Measurements of environmental controls on nitrogen cycling should offer insight into the nature of co-evolution of these microbial communities and their planets of origin. Identifying the spatial (microscale) as well as temporal (diel and seasonal) distribution of nitrogen transformations, e.g., rates of nitrification and denitrification, within mats, particularly with respect to the distribution of photosynthetically-produced oxygen, is anticipated. The results

  17. Microbial hotspots and hot moments in soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuzyakov, Yakov; Blagodatskaya, Evgenia

    2015-04-01

    Soils are the most heterogeneous parts of the biosphere, with an extremely high differentiation of properties and processes within nano- to macroscales. The spatial and temporal heterogeneity of input of labile organics by plants creates microbial hotspots over short periods of time - the hot moments. We define microbial hotspots as small soil volumes with much faster process rates and much more intensive interactions compared to the average soil conditions. Such hotspots are found in the rhizosphere, detritusphere, biopores (including drilosphere) and on aggregate surfaces, but hotspots are frequently of mixed origin. Hot moments are short-term events or sequences of events inducing accelerated process rates as compared to the averaged rates. Thus, hotspots and hot moments are defined by dynamic characteristics, i.e. by process rates. For this hotspot concept we extensively reviewed and examined the localization and size of hotspots, spatial distribution and visualization approaches, transport of labile C to and from hotspots, lifetime and process intensities, with a special focus on process rates and microbial activities. The fraction of active microorganisms in hotspots is 2-20 times higher than in the bulk soil, and their specific activities (i.e. respiration, microbial growth, mineralization potential, enzyme activities, RNA/DNA ratio) may also be much higher. The duration of hot moments in the rhizosphere is limited and is controlled by the length of the input of labile organics. It can last a few hours up to a few days. In the detritusphere, however, the duration of hot moments is regulated by the output - by decomposition rates of litter - and lasts for weeks and months. Hot moments induce succession in microbial communities and intense intra- and interspecific competition affecting C use efficiency, microbial growth and turnover. The faster turnover and lower C use efficiency in hotspots counterbalances the high C inputs, leading to the absence of strong

  18. Microbial life in a liquid asphalt desert.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulze-Makuch, Dirk; Haque, Shirin; de Sousa Antonio, Marina Resendes; Ali, Denzil; Hosein, Riad; Song, Young C; Yang, Jinshu; Zaikova, Elena; Beckles, Denise M; Guinan, Edward; Lehto, Harry J; Hallam, Steven J

    2011-04-01

    Pitch Lake in Trinidad and Tobago is a natural asphalt reservoir nourished by pitch seepage, a form of petroleum that consists of mostly asphaltines, from the surrounding oil-rich region. During upward seepage, pitch mixes with mud and gases under high pressure, and the lighter portion evaporates or is volatilized, which produces a liquid asphalt residue characterized by low water activity, recalcitrant carbon substrates, and noxious chemical compounds. An active microbial community of archaea and bacteria, many of them novel strains (particularly from the new Tar ARC groups), totaling a biomass of up to 10(7) cells per gram, was found to inhabit the liquid hydrocarbon matrix of Pitch Lake. Geochemical and molecular taxonomic approaches revealed diverse, novel, and deeply branching microbial lineages with the potential to mediate anaerobic hydrocarbon degradation processes in different parts of the asphalt column. In addition, we found markers for archaeal methane metabolism and specific gene sequences affiliated with facultative and obligate anaerobic sulfur- and nitrite-oxidizing bacteria. The microbial diversity at Pitch Lake was found to be unique when compared to microbial communities analyzed at other hydrocarbon-rich environments, which included Rancho Le Brea, a natural asphalt environment in California, USA, and an oil well and a mud volcano in Trinidad and Tobago, among other sites. These results open a window into the microbial ecology and biogeochemistry of recalcitrant hydrocarbon matrices and establish the site as a terrestrial analogue for modeling the biotic potential of hydrocarbon lakes such as those found on Saturn's largest moon Titan.

  19. Humans differ in their personal microbial cloud

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James F. Meadow

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Dispersal of microbes between humans and the built environment can occur through direct contact with surfaces or through airborne release; the latter mechanism remains poorly understood. Humans emit upwards of 106 biological particles per hour, and have long been known to transmit pathogens to other individuals and to indoor surfaces. However it has not previously been demonstrated that humans emit a detectible microbial cloud into surrounding indoor air, nor whether such clouds are sufficiently differentiated to allow the identification of individual occupants. We used high-throughput sequencing of 16S rRNA genes to characterize the airborne bacterial contribution of a single person sitting in a sanitized custom experimental climate chamber. We compared that to air sampled in an adjacent, identical, unoccupied chamber, as well as to supply and exhaust air sources. Additionally, we assessed microbial communities in settled particles surrounding each occupant, to investigate the potential long-term fate of airborne microbial emissions. Most occupants could be clearly detected by their airborne bacterial emissions, as well as their contribution to settled particles, within 1.5–4 h. Bacterial clouds from the occupants were statistically distinct, allowing the identification of some individual occupants. Our results confirm that an occupied space is microbially distinct from an unoccupied one, and demonstrate for the first time that individuals release their own personalized microbial cloud.

  20. Biogeochemistry of microbial coal-bed methane

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strc, D.; Mastalerz, Maria; Dawson, K.; MacAlady, J.; Callaghan, A.V.; Wawrik, B.; Turich, C.; Ashby, M.

    2011-01-01

    Microbial methane accumulations have been discovered in multiple coal-bearing basins over the past two decades. Such discoveries were originally based on unique biogenic signatures in the stable isotopic composition of methane and carbon dioxide. Basins with microbial methane contain either low-maturity coals with predominantly microbial methane gas or uplifted coals containing older, thermogenic gas mixed with more recently produced microbial methane. Recent advances in genomics have allowed further evaluation of the source of microbial methane, through the use of high-throughput phylogenetic sequencing and fluorescent in situ hybridization, to describe the diversity and abundance of bacteria and methanogenic archaea in these subsurface formations. However, the anaerobic metabolism of the bacteria breaking coal down to methanogenic substrates, the likely rate-limiting step in biogenic gas production, is not fully understood. Coal molecules are more recalcitrant to biodegradation with increasing thermal maturity, and progress has been made in identifying some of the enzymes involved in the anaerobic degradation of these recalcitrant organic molecules using metagenomic studies and culture enrichments. In recent years, researchers have attempted lab and subsurface stimulation of the naturally slow process of methanogenic degradation of coal. Copyright ?? 2011 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

  1. Microbial Life in a Liquid Asphalt Desert

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulze-Makuch, Dirk; Haque, Shirin; de Sousa Antonio, Marina Resendes; Ali, Denzil; Hosein, Riad; Song, Young C.; Yang, Jinshu; Zaikova, Elena; Beckles, Denise M.; Guinan, Edward; Lehto, Harry J.; Hallam, Steven J.

    2011-04-01

    Pitch Lake in Trinidad and Tobago is a natural asphalt reservoir nourished by pitch seepage, a form of petroleum that consists of mostly asphaltines, from the surrounding oil-rich region. During upward seepage, pitch mixes with mud and gases under high pressure, and the lighter portion evaporates or is volatilized, which produces a liquid asphalt residue characterized by low water activity, recalcitrant carbon substrates, and noxious chemical compounds. An active microbial community of archaea and bacteria, many of them novel strains (particularly from the new Tar ARC groups), totaling a biomass of up to 107 cells per gram, was found to inhabit the liquid hydrocarbon matrix of Pitch Lake. Geochemical and molecular taxonomic approaches revealed diverse, novel, and deeply branching microbial lineages with the potential to mediate anaerobic hydrocarbon degradation processes in different parts of the asphalt column. In addition, we found markers for archaeal methane metabolism and specific gene sequences affiliated with facultative and obligate anaerobic sulfur- and nitrite-oxidizing bacteria. The microbial diversity at Pitch Lake was found to be unique when compared to microbial communities analyzed at other hydrocarbon-rich environments, which included Rancho Le Brea, a natural asphalt environment in California, USA, and an oil well and a mud volcano in Trinidad and Tobago, among other sites. These results open a window into the microbial ecology and biogeochemistry of recalcitrant hydrocarbon matrices and establish the site as a terrestrial analogue for modeling the biotic potential of hydrocarbon lakes such as those found on Saturn's largest moon Titan.

  2. Microbial shaping of sedimentary wrinkle structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mariotti, G.; Pruss, S. B.; Perron, J. T.; Bosak, T.

    2014-10-01

    Wrinkle structures on sandy bed surfaces were present in some of the earliest sedimentary environments, but are rare in modern environments. These enigmatic millimetre- to centimetre-scale ridges or pits are particularly common in sediments that harbour trace fossils and imprints of early animals, and appeared in the aftermath of some large mass extinctions. Wrinkle structures have been interpreted as possible remnants of microbial mats, but the formation mechanism and associated palaeoenvironmental and palaeoecological implications of these structures remain debated. Here we show that microbial aggregates can form wrinkle structures on a bed of bare sand in wave tank experiments. Waves with a small orbital amplitude at the bed surface do not move sand grains directly. However, they move millimetre-size, light microbial fragments and thereby produce linear sand ridges and rounded scour pits at the wavelengths observed in nature within hours. We conclude that wrinkle structures are morphological biosignatures that form at the sediment-water interface in wave-dominated environments, and not beneath microbial mats as previously thought. During early animal evolution, grazing by eukaryotic organisms may have temporarily increased the abundance of microbial fragments and thus the production of wrinkle structures.

  3. Design and construction of synthetic microbial consortia in China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ming-Zhu Ding

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The rapid development of synthetic biology enables the design, construction and optimization of synthetic microbial consortia to achieve specific functions. In China, the “973” project-“Design and Construction of Microbial Consortia” was funded by the National Basic Research Program of China in January 2014. It was proposed to address the fundamental challenges in engineering natural microbial consortia and reconstructing microbial consortia to meet industrial demands. In this review, we will introduce this “973” project, including the significance of microbial consortia, the fundamental scientific issues, the recent research progresses, and some case studies about synthetic microbial consortia in the past two and a half years.

  4. Microbial flocculant and its application in environmental protection

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    1999-01-01

    The microbial flocculant is a kind of natural bio- polymer and has promising future to be used in the fermentation industry and wastewater treatment. It has been studied in details in many countries, such as U.S.A, Japan. This paper reviewed the development on microbial flocculant basic studies and applications, including flocculant-production microorganisms, chemical and components of microbial flocculants, flocculation mechanism of microbial flocculants, capability of microbial flocculants and influence factors, and culture conditions for flocculant production. The application cases of microbial flocculants were also discussed.

  5. Microbial D-xylonate production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toivari, Mervi H; Nygård, Yvonne; Penttilä, Merja; Ruohonen, Laura; Wiebe, Marilyn G

    2012-10-01

    D-Xylonic acid is a versatile platform chemical with reported applications as complexing agent or chelator, in dispersal of concrete, and as a precursor for compounds such as co-polyamides, polyesters, hydrogels and 1,2,4-butanetriol. With increasing glucose prices, D-xylonic acid may provide a cheap, non-food derived alternative for gluconic acid, which is widely used (about 80 kton/year) in pharmaceuticals, food products, solvents, adhesives, dyes, paints and polishes. Large-scale production has not been developed, reflecting the current limited market for D-xylonate. D-Xylonic acid occurs naturally, being formed in the first step of oxidative metabolism of D-xylose by some archaea and bacteria via the action of D-xylose or D-glucose dehydrogenases. High extracellular concentrations of D-xylonate have been reported for various bacteria, in particular Gluconobacter oxydans and Pseudomonas putida. High yields of D-xylonate from D-xylose make G. oxydans an attractive choice for biotechnical production. G. oxydans is able to produce D-xylonate directly from plant biomass hydrolysates, but rates and yields are reduced because of sensitivity to hydrolysate inhibitors. Recently, D-xylonate has been produced by the genetically modified bacterium Escherichia coli and yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Kluyveromyces lactis. Expression of NAD(+)-dependent D-xylose dehydrogenase of Caulobacter crescentus in either E. coli or in a robust, hydrolysate-tolerant, industrial Saccharomyces cerevisiae strain has resulted in D-xylonate titres, which are comparable to those seen with G. oxydans, at a volumetric rate approximately 30% of that observed with G. oxydans. With further development, genetically modified microbes may soon provide an alternative for production of D-xylonate at industrial scale.

  6. Deep Diversity: Novel Approach to Overcoming the PCR Bias Encountered During Environmental Analysis of Microbial Populations for Alpha-Diversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramirez, Gustavo A; Vaishampayan, Parag A.

    2011-01-01

    Alpha-diversity studies are of crucial importance to environmental microbiologists. The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method has been paramount for studies interrogating microbial environmental samples for taxon richness. Phylogenetic studies using this technique are based on the amplification and comparison of the 16S rRNA coding regions. PCR, due disproportionate distribution of microbial species in the environment, increasingly favors the amplification of the most predominant phylotypes with every subsequent reaction cycle. The genetic and chemical complexity of environmental samples are intrinsic factors that exacerbate an inherit bias in PCR-based quantitative and qualitative studies of microbial communities. We report that treatment of a genetically complex total genomic environmental DNA extract with Propidium Monoazide (PMA), a DNA intercalating molecule capable of forming a covalent cross-linkage to organic moieties upon light exposure, disproportionally inactivates predominant phylotypes and results in the exponential amplification of previously shadowed microbial ?-diversity quantified as a 19.5% increase in OUTs reported via phylogenetic screening using PhyloChip.

  7. Genetic engineering of sulfur-degrading Sulfolobus. Final technical report, September 1, 1990--August 31, 1991

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ho, N.W.Y.

    1991-12-31

    The objectives of the proposed research is to first establish a plasmid-mediated genetic transformation system for the sulfur degrading Sulfolobus, and then to clone and overexpress the genes encoding the organic-sulfur-degrading enzymes from Sulfolobus- as well as from other microorganisms, to develop a Sulfolobus-based microbial process for the removal of both organic and inorganic sulfur from coal.

  8. Murine Gut Microbiota Is Defined by Host Genetics and Modulates Variation of Metabolic Traits

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    McKnite, A.M.; Lu, L.; Williams, E.; Bastiaansen, J.W.M.

    2012-01-01

    The gastrointestinal tract harbors a complex and diverse microbiota that has an important role in host metabolism. Microbial diversity is influenced by a combination of environmental and host genetic factors and is associated with several polygenic diseases. In this study we combined next-generation

  9. Maize Leaf Epiphytic Bacteria Diversity Patterns Are Genetically Correlated with Resistance to Fungal Pathogen Infection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plant leaves host a specific set of microbial epiphytes. These phyllosphere organisms form a large community, with annual crops alone covering millions of hectares each year. Host plant genetic factors and abiotic stresses such as UV-B are key in shaping patterns of epiphyte diversity; we analyzed...

  10. Genetics Home Reference

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skip Navigation Bar Home Current Issue Past Issues Genetics Home Reference Past Issues / Spring 2007 Table of ... of this page please turn Javascript on. The Genetics Home Reference (GHR) Web site — ghr.nlm.nih. ...

  11. Genetics of Hearing Loss

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... in Latin America Information For... Media Policy Makers Genetics of Hearing Loss Language: English Español (Spanish) Recommend ... of hearing loss in babies is due to genetic causes. There are also a number of things ...

  12. Frontotemporal Dementia: Genetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Calendar of Events Fundraising Events Conferences Press Releases Genetics of FTD After receiving a diagnosis of FTD ... that recent advances in science have brought the genetics of FTD into much better focus. In 2012, ...

  13. Genetic Disease Foundation

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... mission to help prevent, manage and treat inherited genetic diseases. View our latest News Brief here . You can ... contributions to the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of genetic diseases. Learn how advances at Mount Sinai have impacted ...

  14. Genetic Brain Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    A genetic brain disorder is caused by a variation or a mutation in a gene. A variation is a different form ... mutation is a change in a gene. Genetic brain disorders affect the development and function of the ...

  15. Software For Genetic Algorithms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Lui; Bayer, Steve E.

    1992-01-01

    SPLICER computer program is genetic-algorithm software tool used to solve search and optimization problems. Provides underlying framework and structure for building genetic-algorithm application program. Written in Think C.

  16. Genetics Home Reference

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... changes Browse A–Z Chromosomes & mtDNA Autosomes, sex chromosomes, and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) Browse Help Me Understand Genetics Learn about the basics of human genetics Browse New & Updated Pages New Pages Omenn ...

  17. Genetically engineered foods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bioengineered foods; GMOs; Genetically modified foods ... helps speed up the process of creating new foods with desired traits. The possible benefits of genetic engineering include: More nutritious food Tastier food Disease- and ...

  18. Genetics of Parkinson's disease

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Klein, Christine; Westenberger, Ana

    2012-01-01

    Fifteen years of genetic research in Parkinson's disease (PD) have led to the identification of several monogenic forms of the disorder and of numerous genetic risk factors increasing the risk to develop PD...

  19. Prenatal screening and genetics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alderson, P; Aro, A R; Dragonas, T

    2001-01-01

    Although the term 'genetic screening' has been used for decades, this paper discusses how, in its most precise meaning, genetic screening has not yet been widely introduced. 'Prenatal screening' is often confused with 'genetic screening'. As we show, these terms have different meanings, and we...... examine definitions of the relevant concepts in order to illustrate this point. The concepts are i) prenatal, ii) genetic screening, iii) screening, scanning and testing, iv) maternal and foetal tests, v) test techniques and vi) genetic conditions. So far, prenatal screening has little connection...... with precisely defined genetics. There are benefits but also disadvantages in overstating current links between them in the term genetic screening. Policy making and professional and public understandings about screening could be clarified if the distinct meanings of prenatal screening and genetic screening were...

  20. Genetics Home Reference: hyperprolinemia

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... can also occur with other conditions, such as malnutrition or liver disease. In particular, individuals with conditions ... Topic: Amino Acid Metabolism Disorders Health Topic: Genetic Brain Disorders Health Topic: Newborn Screening Genetic and Rare ...