Microbes and Environments
Online ISSN : 1347-4405
Print ISSN : 1342-6311
ISSN-L : 1342-6311
How Do Thermophiles Organize Their Genomes?
Naomichi Takemata
Author information

2024 Volume 39 Issue 5 Article ID: ME23087


All cells must maintain the structural and functional integrity of the genome under a wide range of environments. High temperatures pose a formidable challenge to cells by denaturing the DNA double helix, causing chemical damage to DNA, and increasing the random thermal motion of chromosomes. Thermophiles, predominantly classified as bacteria or archaea, exhibit an exceptional capacity to mitigate these detrimental effects and prosper under extreme thermal conditions, with some species tolerating temperatures higher than 100°C. Their genomes are mainly characterized by the presence of reverse gyrase, a unique topoisomerase that introduces positive supercoils into DNA. This enzyme has been suggested to maintain the genome integrity of thermophiles by limiting DNA melting and mediating DNA repair. Previous studies provided significant insights into the mechanisms by which NAPs, histones, SMC superfamily proteins, and polyamines affect the 3D genomes of thermophiles across different scales. Here, I discuss current knowledge of the genome organization in thermophiles and pertinent research questions for future investigations.

Content from these authors
© 2024 by Japanese Society of Microbial Ecology / Japanese Society of Soil Microbiology / Taiwan Society of Microbial Ecology / Japanese Society of Plant Microbe Interactions / Japanese Society for Extremophiles.
Previous article Next article