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Viruses of haloarchaea.
Life (Basel)
PUBLISHED: 09-11-2014
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In hypersaline environments, haloarchaea (halophilic members of the Archaea) are the dominant organisms, and the viruses that infect them, haloarchaeoviruses are at least ten times more abundant. Since their discovery in 1974, described haloarchaeoviruses include head-tailed, pleomorphic, spherical and spindle-shaped morphologies, representing Myoviridae, Siphoviridae, Podoviridae, Pleolipoviridae, Sphaerolipoviridae and Fuselloviridae families. This review overviews current knowledge of haloarchaeoviruses, providing information about classification, morphotypes, macromolecules, life cycles, genetic manipulation and gene regulation, and host-virus responses. In so doing, the review incorporates knowledge from laboratory studies of isolated viruses, field-based studies of environmental samples, and both genomic and metagenomic analyses of haloarchaeoviruses. What emerges is that some haloarchaeoviruses possess unique morphological and life cycle properties, while others share features with other viruses (e.g., bacteriophages). Their interactions with hosts influence community structure and evolution of populations that exist in hypersaline environments as diverse as seawater evaporation ponds, to hot desert or Antarctic lakes. The discoveries of their wide-ranging and important roles in the ecology and evolution of hypersaline communities serves as a strong motivator for future investigations of both laboratory-model and environmental systems.
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Biofilms formed by the archaeon Haloferax volcanii exhibit cellular differentiation and social motility, and facilitate horizontal gene transfer.
BMC Biol.
PUBLISHED: 08-14-2014
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Archaea share a similar microbial lifestyle with bacteria, and not surprisingly then, also exist within matrix-enclosed communities known as biofilms. Advances in biofilm biology have been made over decades for model bacterial species, and include characterizations of social behaviors and cellular differentiation during biofilm development. Like bacteria, archaea impact ecological and biogeochemical systems. However, the biology of archaeal biofilms is only now being explored. Here, we investigated the development, composition and dynamics of biofilms formed by the haloarchaeon Haloferax volcanii DS2.
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Inteins as indicators of gene flow in the halobacteria.
Front Microbiol
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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This research uses inteins, a type of mobile genetic element, to infer patterns of gene transfer within the Halobacteria. We surveyed 118 genomes representing 26 genera of Halobacteria for intein sequences. We then used the presence-absence profile, sequence similarity and phylogenies from the inteins recovered to explore how intein distribution can provide insight on the dynamics of gene flow between closely related and divergent organisms. We identified 24 proteins in the Halobacteria that have been invaded by inteins at some point in their evolutionary history, including two proteins not previously reported to contain an intein. Furthermore, the size of an intein is used as a heuristic for the phase of the intein's life cycle. Larger size inteins are assumed to be the canonical two domain inteins, consisting of self-splicing and homing endonuclease domains (HEN); smaller sizes are assumed to have lost the HEN domain. For many halobacterial groups the consensus phylogenetic signal derived from intein sequences is compatible with vertical inheritance or with a strong gene transfer bias creating these clusters. Regardless, the coexistence of intein-free and intein-containing alleles reveal ongoing transfer and loss of inteins within these groups. Inteins were frequently shared with other Euryarchaeota and among the Bacteria, with members of the Cyanobacteria (Cyanothece, Anabaena), Bacteriodetes (Salinibacter), Betaproteobacteria (Delftia, Acidovorax), Firmicutes (Halanaerobium), Actinobacteria (Longispora), and Deinococcus-Thermus-group.
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Comparison of prokaryotic community structure from Mediterranean and Atlantic saltern concentrator ponds by a metagenomic approach.
Front Microbiol
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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We analyzed the prokaryotic community structure of a saltern pond with 21% total salts located in Isla Cristina, Huelva, Southwest Spain, close to the Atlantic ocean coast. For this purpose, we constructed a metagenome (designated as IC21) obtained by pyrosequencing consisting of 486 Mb with an average read length of 397 bp and compared it with other metagenomic datasets obtained from ponds with 19, 33, and 37% total salts acquired from Santa Pola marine saltern, located in Alicante, East Spain, on the Mediterranean coast. Although the salinity in IC21 is closer to the pond with 19% total salts from Santa Pola saltern (designated as SS19), IC21 is more similar at higher taxonomic levels to the pond with 33% total salts from Santa Pola saltern (designated as SS33), since both are predominated by the phylum Euryarchaeota. However, there are significant differences at lower taxonomic levels where most sequences were related to the genus Halorubrum in IC21 and to Haloquadratum in SS33. Within the Bacteroidetes, the genus Psychroflexus is the most abundant in IC21 while Salinibacter dominates in SS33. Sequences related to bacteriorhodopsins and halorhodopsins correlate with the abundance of Haloquadratum in Santa Pola SS19 to SS33 and of Halorubrum in Isla Cristina IC21 dataset, respectively. Differences in composition might be attributed to local ecological conditions since IC21 showed a decrease in the number of sequences related to the synthesis of compatible solutes and in the utilization of phosphonate.
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Evidence from phylogenetic and genome fingerprinting analyses suggests rapidly changing variation in Halorubrum and Haloarcula populations.
Front Microbiol
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Halobacteria require high NaCl concentrations for growth and are the dominant inhabitants of hypersaline environments above 15% NaCl. They are well-documented to be highly recombinogenic, both in frequency and in the range of exchange partners. In this study, we examine the genetic and genomic variation of cultured, naturally co-occurring environmental populations of Halobacteria. Sequence data from multiple loci (~2500 bp) identified many closely and more distantly related strains belonging to the genera Halorubrum and Haloarcula. Genome fingerprinting using a random priming PCR amplification method to analyze these isolates revealed diverse banding patterns across each of the genera and surprisingly even for isolates that are identical at the nucleotide level for five protein coding sequenced loci. This variance in genome structure even between identical multilocus sequence analysis (MLSA) haplotypes indicates that accumulation of genomic variation is rapid: faster than the rate of third codon substitutions.
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Population and genomic analysis of the genus Halorubrum.
Front Microbiol
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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The Halobacteria are known to engage in frequent gene transfer and homologous recombination. For stably diverged lineages to persist some checks on the rate of between lineage recombination must exist. We surveyed a group of isolates from the Aran-Bidgol endorheic lake in Iran and sequenced a selection of them. Multilocus Sequence Analysis (MLSA) and Average Nucleotide Identity (ANI) revealed multiple clusters (phylogroups) of organisms present in the lake. Patterns of intein and Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPRs) presence/absence and their sequence similarity, GC usage along with the ANI and the identities of the genes used in the MLSA revealed that two of these clusters share an exchange bias toward others in their phylogroup while showing reduced rates of exchange with other organisms in the environment. However, a third cluster, composed in part of named species from other areas of central Asia, displayed many indications of variability in exchange partners, from within the lake as well as outside the lake. We conclude that barriers to gene exchange exist between the two purely Aran-Bidgol phylogroups, and that the third cluster with members from other regions is not a single population and likely reflects an amalgamation of several populations.
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DNA as a phosphate storage polymer and the alternative advantages of polyploidy for growth or survival.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Haloferax volcanii uses extracellular DNA as a source for carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorous. However, it can also grow to a limited extend in the absence of added phosphorous, indicating that it contains an intracellular phosphate storage molecule. As Hfx. volcanii is polyploid, it was investigated whether DNA might be used as storage polymer, in addition to its role as genetic material. It could be verified that during phosphate starvation cells multiply by distributing as well as by degrading their chromosomes. In contrast, the number of ribosomes stayed constant, revealing that ribosomes are distributed to descendant cells, but not degraded. These results suggest that the phosphate of phosphate-containing biomolecules (other than DNA and RNA) originates from that stored in DNA, not in rRNA. Adding phosphate to chromosome depleted cells rapidly restores polyploidy. Quantification of desiccation survival of cells with different ploidy levels showed that under phosphate starvation Hfx. volcanii diminishes genetic advantages of polyploidy in favor of cell multiplication. The consequences of the usage of genomic DNA as phosphate storage polymer are discussed as well as the hypothesis that DNA might have initially evolved in evolution as a storage polymer, and the various genetic benefits evolved later.
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Extracellular DNA metabolism in Haloferax volcanii.
Front Microbiol
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Extracellular DNA is found in all environments and is a dynamic component of the microbial ecosystem. Microbial cells produce and interact with extracellular DNA through many endogenous mechanisms. Extracellular DNA is processed and internalized for use as genetic information and as a major source of macronutrients, and plays several key roles within prokaryotic biofilms. Hypersaline sites contain some of the highest extracellular DNA concentrations measured in nature-a potential rich source of carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus for halophilic microorganisms. We conducted DNA growth studies for the halophilic archaeon Haloferax volcanii DS2 and show that this model Halobacteriales strain is capable of using exogenous double-stranded DNA as a nutrient. Further experiments with varying medium composition, DNA concentration, and DNA types revealed that DNA is utilized primarily as a phosphorus source, that growth on DNA is concentration-dependent, and that DNA isolated from different sources is metabolized selectively, with a bias against highly divergent methylated DNA. Additionally, fluorescence microscopy showed that labeled DNA co-localized with H. volcanii cells. The gene Hvo_1477 was also identified using a comparative genomic approach as a factor likely to be involved in DNA processing at the cell surface, and deletion of Hvo_1477 created a strain deficient in the ability to grow on extracellular DNA. Widespread distribution of Hvo_1477 homologs in archaea suggests metabolism of extracellular DNA may be of broad ecological and physiological relevance in this domain of life.
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Draft Genome Sequence of the Moderately Halophilic Bacterium Marinobacter lipolyticus Strain SM19.
Genome Announc
PUBLISHED: 07-02-2013
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Marinobacter lipolyticus strain SM19, isolated from saline soil in Spain, is a moderately halophilic bacterium belonging to the class Gammaproteobacteria. Here, we report the draft genome sequence of this strain, which consists of a 4.0-Mb chromosome and which is able to produce the halophilic enzyme lipase LipBL.
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Draft Genome Sequence of the Moderately Halophilic Bacterium Pseudoalteromonas ruthenica Strain CP76.
Genome Announc
PUBLISHED: 05-25-2013
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Pseudoalteromonas ruthenica strain CP76, isolated from a saltern in Spain, is a moderately halophilic bacterium belonging to the Gammaproteobacteria. Here we report the draft genome sequence, which consists of a 4.0-Mb chromosome, of this strain, which is able to produce the extracellular enzyme haloprotease CPI.
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Cell sorting analysis of geographically separated hypersaline environments.
Extremophiles
PUBLISHED: 01-04-2013
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Biogeography of microbial populations remains to be poorly understood, and a novel technique of single cell sorting promises a new level of resolution for microbial diversity studies. Using single cell sorting, we compared saturated NaCl brine environments (32-35 %) of the South Bay Salt Works in Chula Vista in California (USA) and Santa Pola saltern near Alicante (Spain). Although some overlap in community composition was detected, both samples were significantly different and included previously undiscovered 16S rRNA sequences. The community from Chula Vista saltern had a large bacterial fraction, which consisted of diverse Bacteroidetes and Proteobacteria. In contrast, Archaea dominated Santa Polas community and its bacterial fraction consisted of the previously known Salinibacter lineages. The recently reported group of halophilic Archaea, Nanohaloarchaea, was detected at both sites. We demonstrate that cell sorting is a useful technique for analysis of halophilic microbial communities, and is capable of identifying yet unknown or divergent lineages. Furthermore, we argue that observed differences in community composition reflect restricted dispersal between sites, a likely mechanism for diversification of halophilic microorganisms.
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Dihydroxyacetone metabolism in Haloferax volcanii.
Front Microbiol
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2013
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Dihydroxyacetone (DHA) is a ketose sugar that can be produced by oxidizing glycerol. DHA in the environment is taken up and phosphorylated to DHA-phosphate by glycerol kinase or DHA kinase. In hypersaline environments, it is hypothesized that DHA is produced as an overflow product from glycerol utilization by organisms such as Salinibacter ruber. Previous research has demonstrated that the halobacterial species Haloquadratum walsbyi can use DHA as a carbon source, and putative DHA kinase genes were hypothesized to be involved in this process. However, DHA metabolism has not been demonstrated in other halobacterial species, and the role of the DHA kinase genes was not confirmed. In this study, we examined the metabolism of DHA in Haloferax volcanii because putative DHA kinase genes were annotated in its genome, and it has an established genetic system to assay growth of mutant knockouts. Experiments in which Hfx. volcanii was grown on DHA as the sole carbon source demonstrated growth, and that it is concentration dependent. Three annotated DHA kinase genes (HVO_1544, HVO_1545, and HVO_1546), which are homologous to the putative DHA kinase genes present in Hqm. walsbyi, as well as the glycerol kinase gene (HVO_1541), were deleted to examine the effect of these genes on the growth of Hfx. volcanii on DHA. Experiments demonstrated that the DHA kinase deletion mutant exhibited diminished, but not absence of growth on DHA compared to the parent strain. Deletion of the glycerol kinase gene also reduced growth on DHA, and did so more than deletion of the DHA kinase. The results indicate that Hfx. volcanii can metabolize DHA and that DHA kinase plays a role in this metabolism. However, the glycerol kinase appears to be the primary enzyme involved in this process. BLASTp analyses demonstrate that the DHA kinase genes are patchily distributed among the Halobacteria, whereas the glycerol kinase gene is widely distributed, suggesting a widespread capability for DHA metabolism.
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New abundant microbial groups in aquatic hypersaline environments.
Sci Rep
PUBLISHED: 08-22-2011
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We describe the microbiota of two hypersaline saltern ponds, one of intermediate salinity (19%) and a NaCl saturated crystallizer pond (37%) using pyrosequencing. The analyses of these metagenomes (nearly 784 Mb) reaffirmed the vast dominance of Haloquadratum walsbyi but also revealed novel, abundant and previously unsuspected microbial groups. We describe for the first time, a group of low GC Actinobacteria, related to freshwater Actinobacteria, abundant in low and intermediate salinities. Metagenomic assembly revealed three new abundant microbes: a low-GC euryarchaeon with the lowest GC content described for any euryarchaeon, a high-GC euryarchaeon and a gammaproteobacterium related to Alkalilimnicola and Nitrococcus. Multiple displacement amplification and sequencing of the genome from a single archaeal cell of the new low GC euryarchaeon suggest a photoheterotrophic and polysaccharide-degrading lifestyle and its relatedness to the recently described lineage of Nanohaloarchaea. These discoveries reveal the combined power of an unbiased metagenomic and single cell genomic approach.
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Multilocus sequence analysis of the family Halomonadaceae.
Int. J. Syst. Evol. Microbiol.
PUBLISHED: 04-08-2011
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Multilocus sequence analysis (MLSA) protocols have been developed for species circumscription for many taxa. However, at present, no studies based on MLSA have been performed within any moderately halophilic bacterial group. To test the usefulness of MLSA with these kinds of micro-organisms, the family Halomonadaceae, which includes mainly halophilic bacteria, was chosen as a model. This family comprises ten genera with validly published names and 85 species of environmental, biotechnological and clinical interest. In some cases, the phylogenetic relationships between members of this family, based on 16S rRNA gene sequence comparisons, are not clear and a deep phylogenetic analysis using several housekeeping genes seemed appropriate. Here, MLSA was applied using the 16S rRNA, 23S rRNA, atpA, gyrB, rpoD and secA genes for species of the family Halomonadaceae. Phylogenetic trees based on the individual and concatenated gene sequences revealed that the family Halomonadaceae formed a monophyletic group of micro-organisms within the order Oceanospirillales. With the exception of the genera Halomonas and Modicisalibacter, all other genera within this family were phylogenetically coherent. Five of the six studied genes (16S rRNA, 23S rRNA, gyrB, rpoD and secA) showed a consistent evolutionary history. However, the results obtained with the atpA gene were different; thus, this gene may not be considered useful as an individual gene phylogenetic marker within this family. The phylogenetic methods produced variable results, with those generated from the maximum-likelihood and neighbour-joining algorithms being more similar than those obtained by maximum-parsimony methods. Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) plays an important evolutionary role in the family Halomonadaceae; however, the impact of recombination events in the phylogenetic analysis was minimized by concatenating the six loci, which agreed with the current taxonomic scheme for this family. Finally, the findings of this study also indicated that the 16S rRNA, gyrB and rpoD genes were the most suitable genes for future taxonomic studies using MLSA within the family Halomonadaceae.
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A multilocus sequence analysis approach to the phylogeny and taxonomy of the Halobacteriales.
Int. J. Syst. Evol. Microbiol.
PUBLISHED: 02-04-2011
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Members of the order Halobacteriales are obligate extreme halophiles that belong to the domain Archaea. The classification of the Halobacteriales currently relies on a polyphasic approach, which integrates phenotypic, genotypic and chemotaxonomic characterization. However, the most utilized genetic marker for phylogeny, the 16S rRNA gene, has multiple drawbacks for use with the Halobacteriales: the species of many genera exhibit large intragenic differences between multiple ribosomal RNA operons, the gene is too conserved to discriminate reliably at the species level and it appears to be the most frequently recombined gene between closely related species. Moreover, the Halobacteriales is a rapidly expanding group due to recent successes at cultivating novel strains from a diverse set of hypersaline environments; a fast, reliable, inexpensive, portable molecular method for discriminating species is required for their investigation. Recently, multilocus sequence analysis (MLSA) has been shown to be an effective tool for strain identification and taxonomic designation, even for those taxa that experience frequent lateral gene transfer and homologous recombination. In this study, MLSA was utilized for evolutionary and taxonomic investigation of the Halobacteriales. Efficacy of the MLSA approach was tested across a hierarchical gradient using 52 halobacterial strains, representing 33 species (including names without standing in nomenclature) and 14 genera. A subset of 21 strains from the genus Haloarcula was analysed separately to test the sensitivity and relevance of the MLSA approach among closely related strains and species. The results demonstrated that MLSA differentiated individual strains, reliably grouped strains into species and species into genera and identified potential novel species and also family-like relationships. This study demonstrates that MLSA is a rapid and informative molecular method that will probably accommodate strain analysis at any taxonomic level within the Halobacteriales.
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Ancient origins determine global biogeography of hot and cold desert cyanobacteria.
Nat Commun
PUBLISHED: 01-27-2011
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Factors governing large-scale spatio-temporal distribution of microorganisms remain unresolved, yet are pivotal to understanding ecosystem value and function. Molecular genetic analyses have focused on the influence of niche and neutral processes in determining spatial patterns without considering the temporal scale. Here, we use temporal phylogenetic analysis calibrated using microfossil data for a globally sampled desert cyanobacterium, Chroococcidiopsis, to investigate spatio-temporal patterns in microbial biogeography and evolution. Multilocus phylogenetic associations were dependent on contemporary climate with no evidence for distance-related patterns. Massively parallel pyrosequencing of environmental samples confirmed that Chroococcidiopsis variants were specific to either hot or cold deserts. Temporally scaled phylogenetic analyses showed no evidence of recent inter-regional gene flow, indicating populations have not shared common ancestry since before the formation of modern continents. These results indicate that global distribution of desert cyanobacteria has not resulted from widespread contemporary dispersal but is an ancient evolutionary legacy. This highlights the importance of considering temporal scales in microbial biogeography.
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In vivo characterization of the homing endonuclease within the polB gene in the halophilic archaeon Haloferax volcanii.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-20-2011
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Inteins are parasitic genetic elements, analogous to introns that excise themselves at the protein level by self-splicing, allowing the formation of functional non-disrupted proteins. Many inteins contain a homing endonuclease (HEN) gene, and rely on its activity for horizontal propagation. In the halophilic archaeon, Haloferax volcanii, the gene encoding DNA polymerase B (polB) contains an intein with an annotated but uncharacterized HEN. Here we examine the activity of the polB HEN in vivo, within its natural archaeal host. We show that this HEN is highly active, and able to insert the intein into both a chromosomal target and an extra-chromosomal plasmid target, by gene conversion. We also demonstrate that the frequency of its incorporation depends on the length of the flanking homologous sequences around the target site, reflecting its dependence on the homologous recombination machinery. Although several evolutionary models predict that the presence of an intein involves a change in the fitness of the host organism, our results show that a strain deleted for the intein sequence shows no significant changes in growth rate compared to the wild type.
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Intertwined evolutionary histories of marine Synechococcus and Prochlorococcus marinus.
Genome Biol Evol
PUBLISHED: 08-28-2009
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Prochlorococcus is a genus of marine cyanobacteria characterized by small cell and genome size, an evolutionary trend toward low GC content, the possession of chlorophyll b, and the absence of phycobilisomes. Whereas many shared derived characters define Prochlorococcus as a clade, many genome-based analyses recover them as paraphyletic, with some low-light adapted Prochlorococcus spp. grouping with marine Synechococcus. Here, we use 18 Prochlorococcus and marine Synechococcus genomes to analyze gene flow within and between these taxa. We introduce embedded quartet scatter plots as a tool to screen for genes whose phylogeny agrees or conflicts with the plurality phylogenetic signal, with accepted taxonomy and naming, with GC content, and with the ecological adaptation to high and low light intensities. We find that most gene families support high-light adapted Prochlorococcus spp. as a monophyletic clade and low-light adapted Prochlorococcus sp. as a paraphyletic group. But we also detect 16 gene families that were transferred between high-light adapted and low-light adapted Prochlorococcus sp. and 495 gene families, including 19 ribosomal proteins, that do not cluster designated Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus strains in the expected manner. To explain the observed data, we propose that frequent gene transfer between marine Synechococcus spp. and low-light adapted Prochlorococcus spp. has created a "highway of gene sharing" (Beiko RG, Harlow TJ, Ragan MA. 2005. Highways of gene sharing in prokaryotes. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 102:14332-14337) that tends to erode genus boundaries without erasing the Prochlorococcus-specific ecological adaptations.
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A critique of prokaryotic species concepts.
Methods Mol. Biol.
PUBLISHED: 03-10-2009
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Developments in DNA sequencing and population genetics analyses have revealed unanticipated complexity in prokaryotic variation. The observation that genetic traits are horizontally inherited at unexpected rates within and between closely related asexually reproducing lineages impacts our comprehension of prokaryotic evolution and ecology. As a result, the concepts that point to species as being discrete clusters or monophyletic lineages are at odds with most of the data, suggesting that taxon circumscription can only proceed by informed compromise, pragmatism, and subjectivity.
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Quantifying homologous replacement of loci between haloarchaeal species.
Genome Biol Evol
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In vitro studies of the haloarchaeal genus Haloferax have demonstrated their ability to frequently exchange DNA between species, whereas rates of homologous recombination estimated from natural populations in the genus Halorubrum are high enough to maintain random association of alleles between five loci. To quantify the effects of gene transfer and recombination of commonly held (relaxed core) genes during the evolution of the class Halobacteria (haloarchaea), we reconstructed the history of 21 genomes representing all major groups. Using a novel algorithm and a concatenated ribosomal protein phylogeny as a reference, we created a directed horizontal genetic transfer (HGT) network of contemporary and ancestral genomes. Gene order analysis revealed that 90% of testable HGTs were by direct homologous replacement, rather than nonhomologous integration followed by a loss. Network analysis revealed an inverse log-linear relationship between HGT frequency and ribosomal protein evolutionary distance that is maintained across the deepest divergences in Halobacteria. We use this mathematical relationship to estimate the total transfers and amino acid substitutions delivered by HGTs in each genome, providing a measure of chimerism. For the relaxed core genes of each genome, we conservatively estimate that 11-20% of their evolution occurred in other haloarchaea. Our findings are unexpected, because the transfer and homologous recombination of relaxed core genes between members of the class Halobacteria disrupts the coevolution of genes; however, the generation of new combinations of divergent but functionally related genes may lead to adaptive phenotypes not available through cumulative mutations and recombination within a single population.
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Low species barriers in halophilic archaea and the formation of recombinant hybrids.
Curr. Biol.
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Speciation of sexually reproducing organisms requires reproductive barriers. Prokaryotes reproduce asexually but often exchange DNA by lateral gene transfer mechanisms and recombination [1], yet distinct lineages are still observed. Thus, barriers to gene flow such as geographic isolation, genetic incompatibility or a physiological inability to transfer DNA represent potential underlying mechanisms behind preferred exchange groups observed in prokaryotes [2-6]. In Bacteria, experimental evidence showed that sequence divergence impedes homologous recombination between bacterial species [7-11]. Here we study interspecies gene exchange in halophilic archaea that possess a parasexual mechanism of genetic exchange that is functional between species [12, 13]. In this process, cells fuse forming a diploid state containing the full genetic repertoire of both parental cells, which facilitates genetic exchange and recombination. Later, cells separate, occasionally resulting in hybrids of the parental strains [14]. We show high recombination frequencies between Haloferax volcanii and Haloferax mediterranei, two species that have an average nucleotide sequence identity of 86.6%. Whole genome sequencing of Haloferax interspecies hybrids revealed the exchange of chromosomal fragments ranging from 310Kb to 530Kb. These results show that recombination barriers may be more permissive in halophilic archaea than they are in bacteria.
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Ancient origin of the divergent forms of leucyl-tRNA synthetases in the Halobacteriales.
BMC Evol. Biol.
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Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) has greatly impacted the genealogical history of many lineages, particularly for prokaryotes, with genes frequently moving in and out of a line of descent. Many genes that were acquired by a lineage in the past likely originated from ancestral relatives that have since gone extinct. During the course of evolution, HGT has played an essential role in the origin and dissemination of genetic and metabolic novelty.
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What is Visualize?

JoVE Visualize is a tool created to match the last 5 years of PubMed publications to methods in JoVE's video library.

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In developing our video relationships, we compare around 5 million PubMed articles to our library of over 4,500 methods videos. In some cases the language used in the PubMed abstracts makes matching that content to a JoVE video difficult. In other cases, there happens not to be any content in our video library that is relevant to the topic of a given abstract. In these cases, our algorithms are trying their best to display videos with relevant content, which can sometimes result in matched videos with only a slight relation.