The Journal of General and Applied Microbiology
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Volume 63 , Issue 1
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  • Kenta Yonezuka, Jun Shimodaira, Michiro Tabata, Shoko Ohji, Akira Hoso ...
    Volume 63 (2017) Issue 1 Pages 1-10
    Released: March 17, 2017
    [Advance publication] Released: December 17, 2016
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Pseudomonas putida is well-known for degradation activities for a variety of compounds and its infections have been reported. Thus, P. putida includes both clinical and nonclinical isolates. To date, no reports have examined the phylogenetic relationship between clinical and nonclinical isolates of the P. putida group. In this study, fifty-nine strains of P. putida group containing twenty-six clinical, and thirty-three nonclinical, isolates, were subjected to phylogenetic and taxonomic analyses based on 16S rRNA gene sequences and nine housekeeping gene sequences, including argS, dnaN, dnaQ, era, gltA, gyrB, ppnK, rpoB, and rpoD, to obtain insights into the diversity of species in this group. More than 97.6% similarity was observed among the 16S rRNA gene sequences of all the strains examined, indicating that the resolution of 16S rRNA gene sequences is inadequate. Phylogenetic analysis based on the individual housekeeping genes listed above improved the resolution of the phylogenetic trees, which are different from each other. Multilocus sequence analysis (MLSA) based on the concatenated sequences of the nine genes significantly improved the resolution of the phylogenetic tree, and yielded approximately the same results as average nucleotide identity (ANI) analysis, suggesting its high reliability. ANI analysis classified the fifty-nine strains into twenty-six species containing seventeen singletons and nine strain clusters based on the 95% threshold. It also indicated the mixed distribution of clinical and nonclinical isolates in the six clusters, suggesting that the genomic difference between clinical and nonclinical isolates of the P. putida group is subtle. The P. putida type strain NBRC 14164T is a singleton that is independently located from the P. putida strains distributed among the six clusters, suggesting that the classification of these strains and the differentiation of species in the P. putida group should be re-examined. This study greatly expands insights into the phylogenetic diversity of the P. putida group.

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  • Hayron Canchignia, Fabiola Altimira, Christian Montes, Evelyn Sánchez, ...
    Volume 63 (2017) Issue 1 Pages 11-21
    Released: March 17, 2017
    [Advance publication] Released: December 17, 2016
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    The nematode Xiphinema index affects grape vines and transmits important viruses associated with fanleaf degeneration. Pseudomonas spp. are an extensive bacterial group in which important biodegradation and/or biocontrol properties can occur for several strains in the group. The aim of this study was to identify new Pseudomonas isolates with antagonist activity against X. index. Forty bacterial isolates were obtained from soil and root samples from Chilean vineyards. Thirteen new fluorescent pseudomonads were found and assessed for their antagonistic capability. The nematicide Pseudomonas protegens CHA0 was used as a control. Challenges of nematode individuals in King’s B semi-solid agar Petri dishes facilitated the identification of the Pseudomonas veronii isolate R4, as determined by a 16S rRNA sequence comparison. This isolate was as effective as CHA0 as an antagonist of X. index, although it had a different lethality kinetic. Milk-induced R4 cultures exhibited protease and lipase activities in cell supernatants using both gelatin/tributyrin Petri dish assays and zymograms. Three proteins with these activities were isolated and subjected to mass spectrometry. Amino acid partial sequences enabled the identification of a 49-kDa protease similar to metalloprotease AprA and two lipases of 50 kDa and 69 kDa similar to LipA and ExoU, respectively. Electron microscopy analyses of challenged nematodes revealed degraded cuticle after R4 supernatant treatment. These results represent a new and unexplored property in this species associated with the presence of secretable lipases and protease, similar to characterized enzymes present in biocontrol pseudomonads.

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  • Shingo Suzuki, Akihiro Kaidow, Takuma Meya, Anri Masuya, Takashi Shiin ...
    Volume 63 (2017) Issue 1 Pages 22-27
    Released: March 17, 2017
    [Advance publication] Released: December 17, 2016
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Many significant gene mutations in E. coli have contributed to the development of genetics. Among these, a commonly used recA mutation, Δ(srlrecA)306 has been sequenced by a next-generation sequencer combined with a long PCR. An original report described that Δ(srlrecA)306 cells were deleted from srlR to recA genes in their genome. The next-generation sequencer enables more accurate details to be determined. We ask whether both surrounding genes from hypF to norV for srlR and alaS for recA is there first. The long PCR was carried out with primers, norR and alaS, and amplified DNA fragments differed in length from wild to Δ(srlrecA)306 cells, suggesting that an entire Δ(srlrecA)306 mutation was included. Sequences of those DNA fragments indicated that 9147 bp, from srlR to recA including 10 genes, were replaced by a Tn10 DNA sequence. Junction points at both srlR-Tn10 and Tn10-recA were determined precisely. The results indicate that the first 97% of recA gene sequences were lost with a downstream recX gene remaining intact. The phenotypic difference between Δ(srlrecA)306 and ΔrecA::Km is discussed.

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  • Hiromi Nishida, Taku Oshima
    Volume 63 (2017) Issue 1 Pages 28-35
    Released: March 17, 2017
    [Advance publication] Released: December 17, 2016
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    A subpopulation of Archaea possesses histones, which are similar to eukaryotic histones H3 and H4. However, archaeal histones are smaller than H3 and H4, and are not post-translationally modified. In addition, the fundamental unit of archaeal histones might be a dimer. The organization of archaeal nucleosomes, therefore, differs from that of eukaryotic nucleosomes. The base compositions of archaeal genome are much more diversified than those of eukaryote and the archaeal histones have more diversified amino acid sequences, which are reflected by their varied isoelectric points. We hypothesized that the highly diversified archaeal genomic DNA base composition may cause the archaeal histone variation. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that the distribution of archaeal histones is associated with their genomic DNA base composition. This result strongly suggests that archaeal histones have evolved concomitantly with their genomic DNA base composition. Eukaryotic histones are one of the most evolutionarily conserved proteins and would limit the diversification of genomic DNA base composition. In contrast, archaeal histones have diversified and would permit the great diversification of genomic DNA base composition.

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  • Eman Zakaria Gomaa
    Volume 63 (2017) Issue 1 Pages 36-43
    Released: March 17, 2017
    [Advance publication] Released: January 24, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    The current research was focused on the characterization and antimicrobial activity of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) produced by Bacillus licheniformis NM120-17. The synthesis was initially observed by a colour change from pale yellow to brown which was further confirmed by UV-Vis spectroscopy. The AgNPs were characterized using TEM, EDAX and FTIR. The synthesized nanoparticles were found to be spherical and uniformly distributed with a size in the range of 9–27.5 nm. The antibacterial activities and acting mechanism of AgNPs were studied with respect to Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli by measuring the growth curves, protein and reducing sugar leakage, respiratory chain dehydrogenase activity, as well as the formation of bactericidal reactive oxygen species (ROS). The experimental results indicated that 50 mg/ml AgNPs could completely inhibit the growth of bacterial cells and destroy the permeability of bacterial membranes and depress the activity of some membranous enzymes, which cause bacteria to die eventually. These nontoxic nanomaterials, which can be prepared in a simple and cost-effective manner, may be suitable for the formulation of new types of bactericidal materials.

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  • Mayuko Hori, Shyunsuke Oka, Yoshimi Sugie, Hokuto Ohtsuka, Hirofumi Ai ...
    Volume 63 (2017) Issue 1 Pages 44-50
    Released: March 17, 2017
    [Advance publication] Released: January 31, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Two-component signal transduction systems (TCS), that are also referred to as His to Asp phosphorelay systems, are involved in widespread cellular responses to diverse signals from bacteria to plants. Previously, we succeeded in reconstructing a cyanobacterial photo-perception system in Escherichia coli by employing a CcaS-CcaR two-component system from Nostoc punctiforme. In this study, we have added a photo-responsive ability to ArcB-ArcA (anoxic redox control) TCS of E. coli by fusing a cyanobacterial photoreceptor domain of CcaS with an intracellular histidine kinase (HK) domain of ArcB. For this, we constructed several chimeric HKs between CcaS and ArcB and found that one chimeric HK, named ArcaS9, has a photo-responsive ability. When ArcaS9 was expressed with an ArcA response regulator in E. coli expressing phycocyanobilin (PCB)-producing enzymes, the expression of sdh, a target gene of ArcB-ArcA TCS was regulated in a light-color-dependent manner. Thus we succeeded in endowing E. coli HK with a photo-responsive ability. This provides an insight into how the sensing ability of HK can be manipulated by a chimeric construct.

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  • Shigeki Hamada, Keisuke Kubota, Masanobu Sagisaka
    Volume 63 (2017) Issue 1 Pages 51-57
    Released: March 17, 2017
    [Advance publication] Released: January 24, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    We selected a fungus secreting a neutral protease from soil and identified it as the basidiomycete fungus Cerrena albocinnamomea according to its ITS-5.8S rDNA and 28S rDNA-D1/D2 sequences. A major extracellular protease isolated from C. albocinnamomea was purified approximately 44-fold through two purification steps. SDS-PAGE analyses of the purified protease revealed a single band, and its molecular mass of 39,756 Da was determined using MALDI-TOF-MS. The enzyme was optimally active at approximately pH 7.0 and 45°C. The Km and Vmax values for the hydrolysis of azocasein were 2.46 mg/mL and 989 units/min/mg protein, respectively. The enzyme was stable at pH 3.6–8.6 for 16 h and at temperatures ≤35°C for 1 h. Enzymatic activity was completely inhibited by Cu2+ and Zn2+ and markedly by EDTA and phosphoramidon. The N-terminal amino acid sequence ASYRVLPIT is highly similar to those of the members of the metalloprotease family M36, such as keratinase and elastinase. However, the protease did not detectably hydrolyze keratin or elastin. In contrast, the protease hydrolyzed fibrinogen, although there were no significant sequence similarities to the N-terminal amino acid sequences of other fibrinolytic enzymes. These results suggest that the purified protease represents a new neutral metalloprotease with fibrinogenolytic activity.

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