Microbiome digest, September 25, 2014

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Asbestos and microbiome, human gut microbiome during a long stay in the hospital, gut microbiome of 15 mammals, Wolbachia in insects, microbiome of plant roots, and eukaryotes in Norwegian waters.

Human respiratory microbiome

Airways microbiota: Hidden Trojan horses in asbestos exposed individuals? – Dimitrios E. Magouliotis – Medical Hypotheses

“Here, we propose and discuss that certain proteins secreted by airways symbiotic microbiota create membrane pores to the airway epithelial cells, through which asbestos fibers can penetrate the lung parenchyma and reach the sub-pleural areas.”

Human gut microbiome

Membership and Behavior of Ultra-Low-Diversity Pathogen Communities Present in the Gut of Humans during Prolonged Critical Illness – Alexander Zaborin – mBio

“We analyzed the 16S rRNA amplicon composition in fecal samples of selected patients during their prolonged stay in an intensive care unit (ICU) and observed the emergence of ultra-low-diversity communities (1 to 4 bacterial taxa) in 30% of the patients.”

Mammal microbiome

Convergence of gut microbiomes in myrmecophagous mammals – Frederic Delsuc – Molecular Ecology

“Here, we expand upon previous mammalian gut microbiome studies … to characterize the composition of gut microbiota in 15 species representing all placental myrmecophagous lineages and their close relatives from zoo- and field-collected samples.

Insect microbiome

Symbionts Commonly Provide Broad Spectrum Resistance to Viruses in Insects: A Comparative Analysis of Wolbachia Strains – Julien Martinez – PLOS Pathogens

“We have investigated antiviral protection in 19 Wolbachia strains originating from 16 Drosophila species after transfer into the same genotype of Drosophila simulans. “

Plant microbiome

Niche and host-associated functional signatures of the root surface microbiome – Maya Ofek-Lalzar – Nature Communications

“Metagenomic (genetic potential) analysis identifies a core set of functional genes associated with root colonization in both plant hosts, and metatranscriptomic (functional expression) analysis revealed that most genes enriched in the root zones are expressed. “

Water microbiome

Deep-branching Novel Lineages and High Diversity of Haptophytes in the Skagerrak (Norway) Uncovered by 454 Pyrosequencing – Elianne S. Egge – Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology

“Nano- and picoplanktonic subsurface samples were collected monthly for 2 yr, and the haptophytes were targeted by amplification of RNA/cDNA with Haptophyta-specific 18S ribosomal DNA V4 primers. “

Microbes in the news

Intensive Loss of Gut Bacteria Diversity – Molly Sharlach – The Scientist

In a study published today (September 23) in mBio, researchers also fed ICU patients’ “ultra-low-diversity” gut microbes to C. elegans roundworms.

How Termites Evolved to Decompose Plant Matter: Gut Bacteria and Fungus – Catherine Griffin – Science World Report

“In order to better understand this interaction, the researchers analyzed plant decomposition genes in the first genome sequencing of a fungus-farming termite and its fungal crop, and bacterial gut communities.”

Science and Career

Scientists Are Not Trusted By Americans – Here’s Why – Science 2.0

“A paper in PNAS finds that Americans seem wary of researchers because they get grant funding and do not trust scientists pushing political and cultural agendas. “

Read The Nasty Comments Women In Science Deal With Daily – Macrina Cooper-White – Huffington Post

“Every day you’re faced with some comment, some snide remark, some inability to get a name on a research paper. “

Bik’s Picks

Water on Earth is older than the sun, scientists say – Deborah Netburn – Los Angeles Times

“Some of the water molecules in your drinking glass were created more than 4.5 billion years ago, according to new research.”

Science Graphic of the Week: Three Ways to Visualize Our Melting Northern Ice Cap – Nick Stockton – Wired.com

“These three visualizations, by NASA’s Scientific Visualization Studio, illustrate this steadily unfolding situation, which has nightmarish implications..“

Healthy food might be bad for patients – here’s why – Amanda Squire – The Conversation

“The truth is that healthy food as we think of it may not be what patients really need.”

Brazil releases ‘good’ mosquitoes to fight dengue fever – BBC News

“Brazilian researchers in Rio de Janeiro have released thousands of mosquitoes infected with bacteria that suppress dengue fever.”

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