RFLP of rRNA genes and sequencing of the 16S-23S rDNA intergenic spacer region of ammonia-oxidizing bacteria: a phylogenetic approach.
It has been established that 16S rRNA gene-based phylogeny gives a low resolution between members of the chemoautotrophic ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) belonging to the beta-subclass of the Proteobacteria. In this study, 12 isolates of AOB were ribotyped, and the sequences of the 16S-23S rDNA intergenic spacer region (ISR) were determined and used in a phylogenetic study. 16S and 23S rDNA ribotyping revealed that the AOB studied contain only one rrn operon per genome, in contrast to most bacteria, which have 5-10 copies of the rRNA genes per genome. It is likely that the presence of only one set of rRNA genes is related to the slow growth of the AOB. The 16S and 23S rRNA genes of the AOB were shown to be arranged in the classical way: a 16S rRNA gene, an ISR and a 23S rRNA gene. Despite the close phylogenetic relationship among the AOB, the relative location of the rRNA genes in the genome appears to vary considerably. The size of the ISR was approximately 400 bp in the Nitrosomonas isolates and 645-694 bp in the Nitrosospira isolates, suggesting a species-specific size difference in the ISR. The ISR contained two potential tRNA genes in the 5' end in all isolates studied. The similarity values between the ISR sequences of the AOB are low (42.9-96.2%) compared with the 16S rDNA sequence similarity values, and therefore the ISR sequences are valuable as a complementary phylogenetic tool in combination with 16S rRNA gene sequences. The phylogenetic analysis of the AOB based on ISR sequences confirms the 16S rRNA gene-based phylogeny but has the benefit of giving a higher resolution. (+info)
Roseovarius tolerans gen. nov., sp. nov., a budding bacterium with variable bacteriochlorophyll a production from hypersaline Ekho Lake.
Eight Gram-negative, aerobic, pointed and budding bacteria were isolated from various depths of the hypersaline, heliothermal and meromictic Ekho Lake (Vestfold Hills, East Antarctica). The cells contained storage granules and daughter cells could be motile. Bacteriochlorophyll a was sometimes produced, but production was repressed by constant dim light. The strains tolerated a wide range of temperature, pH, concentrations of artificial seawater and NaCl, but had an absolute requirement for sodium ions. Glutamate was metabolized with and without an additional source of combined nitrogen. The dominant fatty acid was C18:1; other characteristic fatty acids were C18:2, C12:0 2-OH, C12:1 3-OH, C16:1, C16:0 and C18:0. The main polar lipids were diphosphatidylglycerol, phosphatidylethanolamine, phosphatidylglycerol and phosphatidylcholine. The DNA G+C base composition was 62-64 mol%. 16S rRNA gene sequence comparisons showed that the isolates were phylogenetically close to the genera Antarctobacter, 'Marinosulfonomonas', Octadecabacter, Sagittula, Sulfitobacter and Roseobacter. Morphological, physiological and genotypic differences to these previously described and distinct genera support the description of a new genus and a new species, Roseovarius tolerans gen. nov., sp. nov. The type strain is EL-172T (= DSM 11457T). (+info)
Complete sequence of a 184-kilobase catabolic plasmid from Sphingomonas aromaticivorans F199.
The complete 184,457-bp sequence of the aromatic catabolic plasmid, pNL1, from Sphingomonas aromaticivorans F199 has been determined. A total of 186 open reading frames (ORFs) are predicted to encode proteins, of which 79 are likely directly associated with catabolism or transport of aromatic compounds. Genes that encode enzymes associated with the degradation of biphenyl, naphthalene, m-xylene, and p-cresol are predicted to be distributed among 15 gene clusters. The unusual coclustering of genes associated with different pathways appears to have evolved in response to similarities in biochemical mechanisms required for the degradation of intermediates in different pathways. A putative efflux pump and several hypothetical membrane-associated proteins were identified and predicted to be involved in the transport of aromatic compounds and/or intermediates in catabolism across the cell wall. Several genes associated with integration and recombination, including two group II intron-associated maturases, were identified in the replication region, suggesting that pNL1 is able to undergo integration and excision events with the chromosome and/or other portions of the plasmid. Conjugative transfer of pNL1 to another Sphingomonas sp. was demonstrated, and genes associated with this function were found in two large clusters. Approximately one-third of the ORFs (59 of them) have no obvious homology to known genes. (+info)
Overexpression of the alanine carrier protein gene from thermophilic bacterium PS3 in Escherichia coli.
The alanine transporter (alanine carrier protein, ACP) gene of thermophilic bacterium PS3 was previously cloned and expressed in a functionally active form in Escherichia coli cells. To achieve controlled overproduction of the ACP protein, we designed a plasmid encoding a fusion protein comprising ACP joined to the carboxyl terminus of the maltose binding protein (MBP-ACP). Upon transduction of the plasmid into E. coli RM1 cells defective in alanine/glycine transport, the transport activity was expressed even before induction with 1-thio-beta-D-galacto-pyranoside (IPTG), and increased slightly on induction with IPTG at low concentrations. However, overexpression of the MBP-ACP gene, induced by higher concentrations of IPTG, resulted in death of the host cells. Hence we screened other host cells and found that the MBP-ACP fusion protein was produced in a large quantity in E. coli TB1 cells 3 h after IPTG induction. The MBP-ACP fusion protein was accumulated in cytoplasmic membranes in an amount reaching more than 20% of the total membrane protein. The affinity-purified MBP-ACP exhibited very low transport activity when reconstituted into proteoliposomes. (+info)
Procedure for expediting determinations of antibiotic susceptibility of gram-negative, urinary tract pathogens.
Standardized direct disk diffusion antibiotic susceptibility testing on monomicrobial urine specimens is compared with the Food and Drug Administration method. The direct procedure yields acceptable data and may conserve 24 h in reporting results. (+info)
Production of poly(3-hydroxybutyric acid-co-4-hydroxybutyric acid) and poly(4-hydroxybutyric acid) without subsequent degradation by Hydrogenophaga pseudoflava.
A Hydrogenophaga pseudoflava strain was able to synthesize poly(3-hydroxybutyric acid-co-4-hydroxybutyric acid) [P(3HB-co-4HB)] having a high level of 4-hydroxybutyric acid monomer unit (4HB) from gamma-butyrolactone. In a two-step process in which the first step involved production of cells containing a minimum amount of poly(3-hydroxybutyric acid) [P(3HB)] and the second step involved polyester accumulation from the lactone, approximately 5 to 10 mol% of the 3-hydroxybutyric acid (3HB) derived from the first-step culture was unavoidably reincorporated into the polymer in the second cultivation step. Reincorporation of the 3HB units produced from degradation of the first-step residual P(3HB) was confirmed by high-resolution 13C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. In order to synthesize 3HB-free poly(4-hydroxybutyric acid) [P(4HB)] homopolymer, a three-stage cultivation technique was developed by adding a nitrogen addition step, which completely removed the residual P(3HB). The resulting polymer was free of 3HB. However, when the strain was grown on gamma-butyrolactone as the sole carbon source in a synthesis medium, a copolyester of P(3HB-co-4HB) containing 45 mol% 3HB was produced. One-step cultivation on gamma-butyrolactone required a rather long induction time (3 to 4 days). On the basis of the results of an enzymatic study performed with crude extracts, we suggest that the inability of cells to produce 3HB in the multistep culture was due to a low level of 4-hydroxybutyric acid (4HBA) dehydrogenase activity, which resulted in a low level of acetyl coenzyme A. Thus, 3HB formation from gamma-butyrolactone is driven by a high level of 4HBA dehydrogenase activity induced by long exposure to gamma-butyrolactone, as is the case for a one-step culture. In addition, intracellular degradation kinetics studies showed that P(3HB) in cells was completely degraded within 30 h of cultivation after being transferred to a carbon-free mineral medium containing additional ammonium sulfate, while P(3HB-co-4HB) containing 5 mol% 3HB and 95 mol% 4HB was totally inert in interactions with the intracellular depolymerases. Intracellular inertness could be a useful factor for efficient synthesis of the P(4HB) homopolymer and of 4HB-rich P(3HB-co-4HB) by the strain used in this study. (+info)
Amino acid composition of peptidoglycan in Caulobacter crescentus.
Peptidoglycan of a gram-negative stalked bacterium, Caulobacter crescentus CB13, contained alanine, diaminopimelic acid, and glutamic acid, in molar ratios of 2 : 1 : 1. The amino acid compositions of peptidoglycans isolated from cultures enriched in swarmer and stalked cells, and from a stalk-less mutant were similar. This finding conflicts with a previous observation that swarmer peptidoglycan does not contain diaminopimelic acid (Goodwin and Shedlarski (1975) Arch. Biochem. Biophys. 170, 23-36). It appears that, despite the morphological differences, the Caulobacter cells all contain a similar peptidoglycan in the cell wall. (+info)
A corrinoid-dependent catabolic pathway for growth of a Methylobacterium strain with chloromethane.
Methylobacterium sp. strain CM4, an aerobic methylotrophic alpha-proteobacterium, is able to grow with chloromethane as a carbon and energy source. Mutants of this strain that still grew with methanol, methylamine, or formate, but were unable to grow with chloromethane, were previously obtained by miniTn5 mutagenesis. The transposon insertion sites in six of these mutants mapped to two distinct DNA fragments. The sequences of these fragments, which extended over more than 17 kb, were determined. Sequence analysis, mutant properties, and measurements of enzyme activity in cell-free extracts allowed the definition of a multistep pathway for the conversion of chloromethane to formate. The methyl group of chloromethane is first transferred by the protein CmuA (cmu: chloromethane utilization) to a corrinoid protein, from where it is transferred to H4folate by CmuB. Both CmuA and CmuB display sequence similarity to methyltransferases of methanogenic archaea. In its C-terminal part, CmuA is also very similar to corrinoid-binding proteins, indicating that it is a bifunctional protein consisting of two domains that are expressed as separate polypeptides in methyl transfer systems of methanogens. The methyl group derived from chloromethane is then processed by means of pterine-linked intermediates to formate by a pathway that appears to be distinct from those already described in Methylobacterium. Remarkable features of this pathway for the catabolism of chloromethane thus include the involvement of a corrinoid-dependent methyltransferase system for dehalogenation in an aerobe and a set of enzymes specifically involved in funneling the C1 moiety derived from chloromethane into central metabolism. (+info)