September 28, 2020

In today’s digest read about ureteral stent microbiota, metagenomic growth estimators, social transmission as a major shaper of gut microbiota in wild mice [spoiler: mice with many friends in separate social circles have the richest microbiota], and give a listen to the first episode of Lonely Pipette, a brand new podcast about doing better science!

General microbiome

Review: Searching for principles of microbial physiology – Frank J Bruggeman – FEMS Microbiology Reviews


*Benchmarking microbial growth rate predictions from metagenomes – Andrew M. Long – The ISME Journal


Review: Gut microbial metabolites as multi-kingdom intermediates – Kimberly A. Krautkramer – Nature Reviews Microbiology


Integration of absolute multi-omics reveals dynamic protein-to-RNA ratios and metabolic interplay within mixed-domain microbiomes – Francesco Delogu – Nature
Behind the paper: What can absolute multi-omics add to microbial ecology?

Gut microbiome

Macrophages Maintain Epithelium Integrity by Limiting Fungal Product Absorption – Aleksandra S. Chikina – Cell

Review: Anorexia nervosa and gut microbiota: A systematic review and quantitative synthesis of pooled microbiological data – Laura Di Lodovico – Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry

In search for interplay between stool microRNAs, microbiota and short chain fatty acids in Crohn’s disease – a preliminary study – Filip Ambrozkiewicz – BMC Gastroenterology

Vaginal microbiome

Slipped strand mispairing in the gene encoding cell wall associated sialidase NanH3 in Gardnerella spp – Shakya P. Kurukulasuriya – bioRxiv

The vaginal microbiome in pregnant women: knowledge gaps in relation to clinical relevance – Steven S. Witkin – BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology

Urinary microbiome

*Ureteral Stent Microbiota Is Associated with Patient Comorbidities but Not Antibiotic Exposure – Kait F. Al – Cell Reports Medicine

Novel Antibiotic-Loaded Particles Conferring Eradication of Deep Tissue Bacterial Reservoirs for the Treatment of Chronic Urinary Tract Infection – Wai Lau – Journal of Controlled Release

Respiratory microbiome

Altered respiratory microbiota composition and functionality associated with asthma early in life – Mohammad T. AL Bataineh – BMC Infectious Diseases

Oral microbiome

Comparative evaluation of microbial profiles of oral samples obtained at different collection time points and using different methods – Michi Omori – Clinical Oral Investigations

Alteration of salivary microbiome in periodontitis with or without type-2 diabetes mellitus and metformin treatment – Xiaoyu Sun – Scientific Reports

Animal microbiome

Habitat disturbance influences the skin microbiome of a rediscovered neotropical-montane frog – Randall R. Jiménez – BMC Microbiology

Lactobacillus spp. attenuate antibiotic-induced immune and microbiota dysregulation in honey bees – Brendan A. Daisley – Communications Biology

Animal experiment

Antibiotics increase aggression behavior and aggression-related pheromones and receptors in Drosophila melanogaster – Michal Grinberg – bioRxiv

*Social networks strongly predict the gut microbiota of wild mice – Aura Raulo – bioRxiv

Plant/root/soil microbiome

Insights into the diversity and survival strategies of soil bacterial isolates from the Atacama Desert – Alicyn Reverdy – bioRxiv

Rhizobacterial species richness improves sorghum growth and soil nutrient synergism in a nutrient-poor greenhouse soil – Mohammad Radhi Sahib – Scientific Reports

Water microbiome

Bacterial Opportunistic Pathogen Gene Markers in Municipal Drinking Water are Associated with Distribution System and Household Plumbing Characteristics – Sarah Haig – Environmental Science: Water Research & Technology

Collection system investigation microbial source tracking (CSI-MST): Applying molecular markers to identify sewer infrastructure failures – Dana Gonzalez – Journal of Microbiological Methods

New insights into the vertical distribution and microbial degradation of microplastics in urban river sediments – Lihua Niu – Water Research

Unveiling dynamics of size-dependent antibiotic resistome associated with microbial communities in full-scale wastewater treatment plants – Kaifeng Yu – Water Research

Aerobic microbial communities in the sediments of a marine oxygen minimum zone – Sabyasachi Bhattacharya – FEMS Microbiology Letters

Phages and viruses

Identification of Bacteriophages in the Vagina of Pregnant Women: A Descriptive Study – Antonio Charlys da Costa – BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology

The Protective Effect of Staphylococcus epidermidis Biofilm Matrix against Phage Predation – Luís D.R. Melo – Viruses


Inferring microbial co-occurrence networks from amplicon data: a systematic evaluation – Dileep Kishore – bioRxiv

GeneMates: an R package for detecting horizontal gene co-transfer between bacteria using gene-gene associations controlled for population structure – Yu Wan – BMC Genomics

A network approach to elucidate and prioritize microbial dark matter in microbial communities – Tatyana Zamkovaya – The ISME Journal


*TLP #1: Navigating the path to team leader, guest: Maxim Greenberg – Renaud Pourpre and Jonathan Weitzman – The Lonely Pipette: helping scientists do better science

Burnout Syndrome, guest: Beth Thompson – Christine Boinett – Your Digital Mentor Podcast

August 2020 Pod: From the deep sea to the lost sense of smell – Bengtsson-Palme Lab – Microbiology Lab Pod

Events &c

Black In Microbiology Week [September 28 – October 4]
a vibrant celebration of Black microbiologists, with talks & panels featuring microbiologists across career stages and subdisciplines

How CHROMagar™ Revolutionized Microbe Identification – Andrea Prinzi – ASM
*Submit a Masterpiece to ASM Agar Art 2020!

The National Summer Undergraduate Research Project (NSURP) #nolabnoproblem initiativeProjects & Presentations

September 25, 2020

Hello from Lübeck/Germany,
today we cover a broad range of microbiome related studies. Of particular interest is a preprint by the Korem lab about use of antibiotics and increase in aggressive behavior in D. melanogaster. This study got already some attention on Twitter and in the press. Furthermore, one preprint covers the C. difficile species problem, investigating the genetic heterogeneity of this species. Last but not least, I would like to mention a paper investigating responses of megakaryocytes, erythroid cells and plasmablasts as hallmarks of severe COVID-19 trajectories.


[PREPRINT] Longitudinal multi-omics analysis identifies responses of megakaryocytes, erythroid cells and plasmablasts as hallmarks of severe COVID-19 trajectories – Bernardes et al. – medRxiv

General microbiome

[PREPRINT] The Clostridioides difficile species problem: global phylogenomic analysis uncovers three ancient, toxigenic, genomospecies – Knight et al. – bioRxiv

Human respiratory microbiome

Longitudinal Changes in Early Nasal Microbiota and the Risk of Childhood Asthma – Toivonen et al. – Pediatrics

Human gut microbiome

[REVIEW] Host–microbiota maladaptation in colorectal cancer – Janney, Pworie & Mann – Nature

Animal experiments

The maternal microbiome modulates fetal neurodevelopment in mice – Vuong et al. – Nature

[PREPRINT] Antibiotics increase aggression behavior and aggression-related pheromones and receptors in Drosophila melanogaster – Grinberg et al. – bioRxiv

Plant, root, and soil microbiome

[PREPRINT] Viruses carrying genes for microbial extremotolerance are abundant and widely dispersed in the Atacama Desert hyperarid soil – Hwang et al. – bioRxiv

Water and extremophile microbiome

[PREPRINT] Enrichment of novel Verrucomicrobia, Bacteroidetes and Krumholzibacteria in an oxygen-limited, methane- and iron-fed bioreactor inoculated with Bothnian Sea sediments – Martins et al. – bioRxiv

Built environment

[PREPRINT] The rise and the fall of a Pseudomonas aeruginosa epidemic lineage in a hospital – Petitjean et al. – bioRxiv

Metabolic traits

Metabolic trait diversity shapes marine biogeography – Deutsch, Penn & Seibel – Nature


[Preprint] Inferring microbial co-occurrence networks from amplicon data: a systematic evaluation – Kishore et al. – bioRxiv

Microbes in the news

Tiny bacteria impact our health in big ways – Gina Rich – The Washington Post (KidsPost)

Gut microbiome plays important role in sleep regulation – ScienceDaily

September 23, 2020

General microbiome
Chemotaxis under flow disorder shapes microbial dispersion in porous media – Pietro de Anna – Nature Physics

REVIEW: A piece of the pie: engineering microbiomes by exploiting division of labor in complex polysaccharide consumption – Stephen RLindemann – Current Opinion in Chemical Engineering

Benchmarking microbial growth rate predictions from metagenomes – Andrew M. Long – The ISME Journal

Integration of absolute multi-omics reveals dynamic protein-to-RNA ratios and metabolic interplay within mixed-domain microbiomes – F. Delogu – Nature Communications

Spatial Variance of Species Distribution Predicts the Interspecies Interactions within a Microbial Metacommunity – So-Yeon Jeong & Tae Gwan Kim – Microbial Ecology

Human microbiome
The Social Distancing Imposed To Contain COVID-19 Can Affect Our Microbiome: a Double-Edged Sword in Human Health – Célia P. F. Domingues – mSphere

Gut microbiome
Auto-reactivity against gut bacterial peptides in patients with late-onset diabetes – Mohammad Sajid – Autoimmunity

REVIEW: The gut microbiome in pediatric patients undergoing allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation – Riccardo Masetti – Pediatric Blood & Cancer

Gut Microbiota and Metabolome Alterations Associated with Parkinson’s Disease – Sarah Vascellari – mSystems

REVIEW: Gut Microbiota Resilience: Definition, Link to Health and Strategies for Intervention – Shaillay Kumar Dogra – Frontiers in Microbiology

Deciphering the impact of diet and host physiology on the mammalian gut microbiome by multi-omics approaches – Christian Milani – Applied and Environmental Microbiology

Oral microbiome
High altitude as a possible factor for dysbiosis of salivary microbiome in orthodontic patients – Ibrahim AlShahrani – Archives of Oral Biology

Pregnancy and early life microbiome
Changes in Gut Microorganism in Patients with Positive Immune Antibody-Associated Recurrent Abortion – Min Jin – BioMed Research International

Contrasting microbiota profiles observed in children carrying either Blastocystis spp. or the commensal amoebas Entamoeba coli or Endolimax nana – Juan F. Alzate – Scientific Reports

Biological observations in microbiota analysis are robust to the choice of 16S rRNA gene sequencing processing algorithm: case study on human milk microbiota – Shirin Moossavi – BMC Microbiology

Microbiome of near sterile sites
Metagenome analysis using serum extracellular vesicles identified distinct microbiota in asthmatics – Ji-Hyang Lee – Scientific Reports

Lung microbiome
REVIEW: Reconsidering ventilator-associated pneumonia from a new dimension of the lung microbiome – Laia Fernández-Barata – EBioMedicine

Animal microbiome
The impact of anthelmintic treatment on gut bacterial and fungal communities in diagnosed parasite-free sika deer Cervus nippon – Xiaolong Hu – Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

Host phylogeny and life history stage shape the gut microbiome in dwarf (Kogia sima) and pygmy (Kogia breviceps) sperm whales – Elizabeth R. Denison – Scientific Reports

Animal experiment
Altered gut microbiome accompanying with placenta barrier dysfunction programs pregnant complications in mice caused by graphene oxide – Xiaojing Liu – Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety

Comparative analysis of the pulmonary microbiome in healthy and diseased pigs – Zongjie Li – Molecular Genetics and Genomics

Diet posttranslationally modifies the mouse gut microbial proteome to modulate renal function – Lior Lobel – Science

Plant, root, and soil microbiome
REVIEW: Overhauling the assessment of agrochemical-driven interferences with microbial communities for improved global ecosystem integrity – Mengcen Wang & Tomislav Cernava – Environmental Science and Ecotechnology

Susceptibility and resilience of the soil ciliate community to high temperatures – Takaaki Oshima – Soil Science and Plant Nutrition

Food microbiology
Novel approaches for the identification of microbial communities in kimchi: MALDI-TOF MS analysis and high-throughput sequencing – Eiseul Kim – Food Microbiology

Water microbiome
The Nutrient Removal Ability and Microbial Communities in a Pilot-Scale Horizontal Subsurface Flow Constructed Wetland Fed by Slightly Polluted Lake Water – Weigang Wang – Wetland

Impact of temporal pH fluctuations on the coexistence of nasal bacteria – Sandra Dedrick – bioRxiv

Study of growth, metabolism, and morphology of Akkermansia muciniphila with an in vitro advanced bionic intestinal reactor – Xiaobei Zhan – bioRxiv

September 21st, 2020

God morgon!

Good morning from Sweden. It’s Monday, beginning of a new week and today’s digest carries a lot of preprints with interesting information.

As ususal, new knowledge about COVID-19 keeps pouring in. A library of 1200 small molecules was screened to reveal at least 20 FDA-approved small molecules that can enhance the antiviral activity of remdesivir. A human enzyme was also shown to be involved in antiviral defences. A new preprint also revealed some modifications in the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein that can increase vaccine efficacy.

Continuing with viruses, new preprint report an improved Zika vaccine, a basic study exploring reverse transcription and thereby developing a better system to study anti-HIV drugs, and a new detailed protocol for enriching viromes in water samples.

Also in today’s digest are some preprints on basic bacteriology with reports on (p)ppGpp and persister cells, Streptococcal membranes, secretory products and their role in Listeria virulence, and efflux pumps in Burkholderia.

Apart from these, there are, coincidentally, two reports on microbial diversity of the waters of Shark Bay, Australia, algal diversity in corals, a relationship between termite gut-microbiota and changes in temperature, and the role of gut microbiota in possibly affecting the sexual dimorphism in susceptibility to diseases.

Hope you enjoy the collection!


Preprint: Discovery of SARS-CoV-2 antiviral synergy between remdesivir and approved drugs in human lung cells – Xammy Nguyenla, et al.

Preprint: A trimeric human angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 as an anti-SARS-CoV-2 agent in vitro – Tianshu Xiao, et al.

Preprint: Development of RNA-based assay for rapid detection of SARS-CoV-2 in clinical samples – Vinod Kumar, et al.

Preprint: Introduction of two prolines and removal of the polybasic cleavage site leads to optimal efficacy of a recombinant spike based SARS-CoV-2 vaccine in the mouse model – Fatima Amanat, et al.


Preprint: Measles-based Zika vaccine induces long-term immunity and requires NS1 antibodies to protect the female reproductive tract in the mouse model of ZIKA – Drishya Kurup, et al.

Preprint: Cocculus hirsutus-derived phytopharmaceutical drug has potent anti-dengue activity – Ankur Poddar, et al.

Preprint: Three-dimensional structure of a flavivirus dumbbell RNA reveals molecular details of an RNA regulator of replication – Benjamin M. Akiyama, et al.

Preprint: Chemical Stabilization of the HIV-1 Capsid Results in Efficient HIV-1 Reverse Transcription in vitro – Jordan Jennings, et al.

Preprint: Life cycle process dependencies of positive-sense RNA viruses suggest strategies for inhibiting productive cellular infection – Harsh Chhajer, et al.

Preprint: Zika virus NS3 protease and its cellular substrates – Agnieszka Dabrowska, et al.

Preprint: A step-by-step sequence-based analysis of virome enrichment protocol for freshwater and sediment samples – Federica Pinto, et al.

Preprint: Matrix metalloproteinases and tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinases in murine coronavirus-induced neuroinflammation – Sourodip Sengupta, et al.

Bacteria Hysteria

Preprint: The generation of persister cells is regulated at the initiation of translation by (p)ppGpp – Roberto C. Molina-Quiroz and Andrew Camilli.

Preprint: Spontaneous Escherichia coli persisters with week-long survival dynamics and lasting memory of a short starvation pulse – Mikkel Skjoldan Svenningsen, et al.

Preprint: Slipped strand mispairing in the gene encoding cell wall associated sialidase NanH3 in Gardnerella spp – Shakya P. Kurukulasuriya, et al.

Preprint: Membrane linkage of a Streptococcus pneumoniae Wzy capsular polysaccharide occurs through an acylglycerol – Thomas R. Larson and Janet Yother.

Preprint: Fluorescent secreted bacterial effectors reveal active intravacuolar proliferation of Listeria monocytogenes in epithelial cells – Caroline Peron-Cane, et al.

Preprint: Burkholderia collagen-like protein 8, Bucl8, is a unique outer membrane component of a tetrapartite efflux pump in Burkholderia pseudomallei and Burkholderia mallei – Megan E Grund, et al.

Preprint: Cerebrospinal fluid proteome maps detect pathogen-specific host response patterns in meningitis – Anahita Bakochi, et al.

Preprint: Piperacillin/tazobactam resistant, cephalosporin susceptible Escherichia coli bloodstream infections driven by multiple resistance mechanisms across diverse sequence types – Thomas Edwards, et al.

Preprint: Analysis of beta-lactam heteroresistance in CRE suggests a stage in the spectrum of antibiotic resistance – Victor I Band and David S Weiss

Preprint: Mechanism of selectivity reveals novel antifolate drug interactions – Shannon Lynn Kordus, et al.

Preprint: Identification of trans-AT polyketide clusters in two marine bacteria reveals cryptic similarities between distinct symbiosis factors – Dina Kačar, et al.

Preprint: Heterologous production of 1-tuberculosinyladenosine in Mycobacterium kansasii models pathoevolution towards the transcellular lifestyle of Mycobacterium tuberculosis – Marwan Ghanem, et al.

General Microbiome

Preprint: Genomic insights into adaptations of TMA-utilizing methanogens to diverse habitats including the human gut – Jacobo de la Cuesta-Zuluaga, et al.

Preprint: Metagenomic insights into ecosystem function in the microbial mats of Blue Holes, Shark Bay – Gareth S Kindler, et al.

Preprint: Long-term cellulose enrichment selects for highly cellulolytic consortia and competition for public goods – Gina R Lewin, et al.

Preprint: Functional diversity of microboring Ostreobium algae isolated from corals – Anaïs Massé, et al.

Preprint: Experimental warming reduces gut prokaryotic diversity, survival and thermal tolerance of the eastern subterranean termite, Reticulitermes flavipes (Kollar) – Rachel A Arango, et al.

Gut microbiota steroid sexual dimorphism and its impact on gonadal steroids: influences of obesity and menopausal status – Jordi Mayneris-Perxachs, et al., Microbiome


Preprint: Cre/LoxP-HBV plasmids generating recombinant covalently closed circular DNA genome upon transfection – Robert L. Kruse, et al.

Preprint: A Novel DNA Chromatography Method to Distinguish M. abscessus Subspecies and Macrolide Susceptibility – Mitsunori Yoshida, et al.


Preprint: Phytophthora sojae effector Avr1d functions as E2 competitor and inhibits ubiquitination activity of GmPUB13 to facilitate infection – Yachun Lin, et al.

Preprint: A Volatile Signal Controls Virulence in the Plant Pathogen Pseudomonas syringae pv. syringae and a Strategy for Infection Control in Organic Farming – Simon Sieber, et al.

Preprint: Schistosoma mansoni lysine specific demethylase 1 (SmLSD1) is a druggable target involved in parasite survival, oviposition and stem cell proliferation – G. Padalino, et al.

Preprint: Alterations to the cardiac metabolome induced by chronic T. cruzi infection relate to the degree of cardiac pathology – Kristyn Hoffman, et al.

Preprint: Remarkable recent changes in genetic diversity of the avirulence gene AvrStb6 in global populations of the wheat pathogen Zymoseptoria tritici – Christopher Stephens, et al.

Microbes in News

Soon-to-be-launched microbiome concept symbiome raises $15mm – Beauty Matters

Finch closes $90 million series d to advance C. difficile infection product – Pharma Live

September 11, 2020

Greetings, friends!

This summer I’ve spent a lot of time outside, going on hikes and enjoying nature. Pennsylvania has a high rate of lyme disease so I’m always careful to check myself for ticks after I spend time outdoors. With that in mind, I want to highlight the review article included in today’s digest that focuses on the interactions between Borrelia burgdorgei and ticks. If you’re looking for a book recommendation, Bitten: The Secret History of Lyme Disease and Biological Weapons by Kris Newby is an excellent pairing!

The summer is also a time where many undergraduates gain important research experience. For those of you thinking ahead to next year, today’s digest also includes an article which provides 10 simple rules for an inclusive summer coding program for non-computer-science undergrads.

Finally, I am very excited to promote Black in Microbiology week, which will be held on Twitter and Instagram during the week of September 28th. I’m looking forward to “meeting” lots of new microbiologists and learning about their research! Each day has unique programming and hashtags, so check out the website for more information.

Happy reading!


Black in Micro Week is September 28 – October 4th, 2020 on your favorite social media platforms! Check out the Black in Microbiology website for additional information, including a full programming schedule, and follow @BlackinMicro and #BlackinMicro on Twitter and Instagram.


Comparative genome analysis of novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) from different geographical locations and the effect of mutations on major target proteins: An in silico insight – Khan et al. – PLOS One

In vivo antiviral host transcriptional response to SARS-CoV-2 by viral load, sex, and age – Lieberman et al. – PLOS Biology

Factors contributing to healthcare professional burnout during the COVID-19 pandemic: A rapid turnaround global survey – Morgantini et al. – PLOS ONE

General microbiome

Review: Ecology and genomics of Actinobacteria: new concepts for natural product discovery – Bergeijk et al. – Nature Reviews Microbiology

Review: Biofilm dispersion – Rumbaugh & Sauer – Nature Reviews Microbiology

Human respiratory microbiome

Whole-genome sequence of multi-drug resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa strains UY1PSABAL and UY1PSABAL2 isolated from human broncho-alveolar lavage, Yaoundé, Cameroon – Madaha et al. – PLOS ONE

Human gut microbiome

Regional variations in Helicobacter pylori infection, gastric atrophy and gastric cancer risk: The ENIGMA study in Chile – Herrero et al. – PLOS ONE

A comparative study of the gut microbiome in Egyptian patients with Type I and Type II diabetes – Radwan et al. – PLOS ONE

Animal experiments

Review: Interactions between Borrelia burgdorferi and ticks – Kurokawa et al. – Nature Reviews Microbiology

Antimicrobial resistance in ovine bacteria: A sheep in wolf’s clothing? – Silva et al. – PLOS ONE

Water and extremophile microbiome

Characterization of Vibrio cholerae isolates from freshwater sources in northwest Ohio – Daboul et al. – PLOS ONE

Food microbiology

Characterization of β-lactam resistance in K. pneumoniae associated with ready-to-eat processed meat in Egypt – Abdel-Rhman – PLOS ONE


Ten simple rules for an inclusive summer coding program for non-computer-science undergraduates – Pennings et al. – PLOS Computational Biology

September 10, 2020

Good morning from smokey, apocalyptic San Francisco! The world outside my window may be in sepia tones, but the articles I’m highlighting here are helping to brighten my day. Today’s digest has some fascinating insect and environmental microbiome research including a paper about the gut microbiota of a beetle that lives in the mixed forest of northeastern Asia and its capacity to efficiently degrade polystyrene. Additionally, there’s a paper characterizing the community structure and metabolic capacity of a biofilm-like microbial community lining the wall of the Yumugi river cave in a remote part of Western New Guinea. I’ve also included a paper examining availability of microbial community sequencing data which found that much of this data is not available and offers suggestions for improving data archiving practices. Finally, there is a very interesting technique paper about an orally ingestible microdevice that can be used to sample the gut microbiota in the upper gastrointestinal tract. Happy reading!

General Microbiome
Influence of Intratumor Microbiome on Clinical Outcome and Immune Processes in Prostate Cancer. – Ma, J. et al., Cancers

Experimental (co)evolution in a multi-species microbial community results in local maladaptation. – Castledine, M. et al., Ecology Letters

Pregnancy and Early Life
Mothers of Preterm Infants Have Individualized Breast Milk Microbiota that Changes Temporally Based on Maternal Characteristics. – Asbury, M.R et al., Cell Host Microbe

The meconium microbiota shares more features with the amniotic fluid microbiota than the maternal fecal and vaginal microbiota. – He, Q. et al., Gut Microbes

Skin microbiome
Stratum Corneum Lipidomics Analysis Reveals Altered Ceramide Profile in Atopic Dermatitis Patients Across Body Sites With Correlated Changes in Skin Microbiome. – Emmert, H. et al., Experimental Dermatology

Vaginal microbiome
Diverse vaginal microbiome was associated with pro-inflammatory vaginal milieu among pregnant women in Uganda. – Bayigga, L. et al. Human Microbiome Journal

Gut microbiome
Diet Diurnally Regulates Small Intestinal Microbiome-Epithelial-Immune Homeostasis and Enteritis. – Tuganbeav, T. et al., Cell

Microbiota-modulated CART + enteric neurons autonomously regulate blood glucose. – Muller, P.A. et al., Science

Succinate Produced by Intestinal Microbes Promotes Specification of Tuft Cells to Suppress Ileal Inflammation. -Banerjee, A. et al., Gastroenterology

Animal Experiments
Gut microbiome improves postoperative cognitive function by decreasing permeability of the blood-brain barrier in aged mice. – Wen, J. et al., Brain Research Bulletin

Indolepropionic Acid, a Metabolite of the Microbiome, Has Cytostatic Properties in Breast Cancer by Activating AHR and PXR Receptors and Inducing Oxidative Stress. – Sári, Z. et al., Cancers

Angiogenin maintains gut microbe homeostasis by balancing α-Proteobacteria and Lachnospiraceae. – Sun, D. et al., Gut

Gut Microbiota-Associated Activation of TLR5 Induces Apolipoprotein A1 Production in the Liver. – Yiu, J.H.C. et al., Circulation Research

Animal and insect microbiome
Cross-generational effects of climate change on the microbiome of a photosynthetic sponge. – Luter, H.M. et al., Environmental Microbiology

Symbionts shape host innate immunity in honeybees. – Horak, R.D. et al., Proceedings Biological Sciences

Parental Microbiota Modulates Offspring Development, Body Mass and Fecundity in a Polyphagous Fruit Fly. – Nguyen, B. et al. Microorganisms

Fast and Facile Biodegradation of Polystyrene by the Gut Microbial Flora of Plesiophthalmus davidis Larvae. – Woo, S. et al., Applied and Environmental Microbiology

Gut microbiota protects honey bees (Apis mellifera L.) against polystyrene microplastics exposure risks. – Wang, K. et al., Journal of Hazardous Materials

Plant, root, and soil microbiome
Characteristics of microbial community of soil subjected to industrial production of antibiotics. – Borčinová, M. et al., Folia Microbiologica

Host selection shapes crop microbiome assembly and network complexity. -Xiong, C. et al., The New Phytologist

Microbiome of root vegetables-a source of gluten-degrading bacteria. – Kõiv, V. et al., Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

Water and extremophile microbiome
Environmental stability impacts the differential sensitivity of marine microbiomes to increases in temperature and acidity. – Wang, Z. et al., ISME Journal

Insights into the Vertical Stratification of Microbial Ecological Roles across the Deepest Seawater Column on Earth. – Xue, C-X et al., Microorganisms

The microbial community of a biofilm lining the wall of a pristine cave in Western New Guinea. – Turrini, P. et al., Microbiological Research

Built environment
Airborne bacteria in outdoor air and air of mechanically ventilated buildings at city-scale in Hong Kong across seasons. – Zhou, Y. et al., Environmental Science and Technology

Phages and viruses
Review: Phages and their potential to modulate the microbiome and immunity. Federici, S. et al., Cellular and Molecular Immunology

Generalized estimating equation modeling on correlated microbiome sequencing data with longitudinal measures. – Chen, B. and Xu, W., PLoS Computational Biology

The Nubeam reference-free approach to analyze metagenomic sequencing reads. – Dai, H. and Guan, Y., Genome Research

The archives are half-empty: an assessment of the availability of microbial community sequencing data. – Jurburg, S.D. et al., Communications Biology

An effective culturomics approach to study the gut microbiota of mammals. – Pereira, A.C. and Cunha, M.V., Research in Microbiology

Activity-based cell sorting reveals responses of uncultured archaea and bacteria to substrate amendment. – Reichart, N.J. et al., ISME Journal

An Ingestible Self-Polymerizing System for Targeted Sampling of Gut Microbiota and Biomarkers. – Chen, L. et al., ACS Nano

September 8, 2020

Greetings, friends!

Today’s digest is a very heavy grab bag of articles! Included are many reviews on everything from the microbiome in forensic science to the gut-lung axis. Also included are original research articles focused on a variety of subjects including microplastics, extremophiles, and the bicycle microbiome! Finally, for those of you looking for practical advice, I’ve highlighted an article focused on best practices for writing genome announcements.

Happy reading!

General microbiome

Manipulating denitrifying sulfide removal of Pseudomonas sp. C27 with nitrite as sole nitrogen source: Shotgun proteomics analysis – Guo et al. – Bioresource Technology

Pseudomonas aeruginosa – Candida interplay: Effect on in vitro antibiotic susceptibility of Pseudomonas aeruginosa when grown in the presence Candida culture – Mcllroy et al. – British Journal of Biomedical Science

Impact of DNA extraction on whole genome sequencing analysis for characterization and relatedness of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli isolates – Nouws et al. – Scientific Reports

Evolution of diversity explains the impact of pre-adaptation of a focal species on the structure of a natural microbial community – Padfield et al. – The ISME Journal

Biomass-degrading glycoside hydrolases of archaeal origin – Suleiman et al. – Biotechnology for Biofuels

Mining for novel antibiotics in the age of antimicrobial resistance – Udaondo and Matilla – Microbial Biotechology

Multi-site human microbiome

Association between the microbiomes of tonsil and saliva samples isolated from pediatric patients subjected to tonsillectomy for the treatment of tonsillar hyperplasia – Choi et al. – Experimental & Molecular Medicine

Review: The impact of the human microbiome in forensic sciences: A systematic review – García et al. – Applied and Enviornmental Microbiology

Human respiratory microbiome

Review: The evolving role of the lung microbiome in pulmonary fibrosis – Lipinski et al. – Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology

Review: Recent advances in understanding the ecology of the lung microbiota and deciphering the gut-lung axis – Willis et al. – Lung Cellcular and Molecular Physiology

Human gut microbiome

Altered gut microbiota correlated with systemic inflammation in children with Kawasaki disease – Chen et al. – Scientific Reports

Review: Gut microbiota in human metabolic health and disease – Fan and Pedersen – Nature Reviews Microbiology

Lactose-reduced infant formula with added corn syrup solids is associated with a distinct gut microbiota in Hispanic infants – Jones et al. – Gut Microbes

Animal experiments

Gut bacterial communities and their contribution to performance of specialist Altica flea beetles – Wei et al. – Microbial Ecology

Dynamic changes of gut microbiota of discus fish (Symphysodon haraldi) at different feeding stages – Zhang et al. – Aquaculture

Plant, root, and soil microbiome

Diversity of cultivable microbes from soil of the Fildes Peninsula, Antarctica, and their potential application – Cong et al. – Frontiers in Microbiology

Structural and functional microbial diversity of sandy soil under cropland and grassland – Frąc et al. – PeerJ

Microbiome–environment interactions in antimony-contaminated rice paddies and the correlation of core microbiome with arsenic and antimony contamination – Li et al. – Chemosphere

Review: Implications of endophytic microbiota in Camellia Sinensis: A review on current understanding and future insights – Xie et al. – Bioengineered

Characterizing the nectar microbiome of the non-native tropical milkweed, Asclepias curassavica, in an urban environment – Warren et al. – PLOS ONE

Water and extremophile microbiome

Prokaryotic diversity in stream sediments affected by acid mine drainage – Carlier et al. – Extremophiles

Combination of genetic tools to discern Bacillus species isolated from hot springs in South Africa – Jardine and Ubomba-Jaswa – African Journal of Mirobiology Research

Bioleaching of pyritic coal wastes: bioprospecting and efficiency of selected consortia – Joulian et al. – Research in Microbiology

Genotypic and phylogenetic diversity of new isolates of terrestrial Xanthophyceae (Stramenopiles) from maritime sandy habitats – Rybalka et al. – Phycologia

Paucihalobacter ruber gen. nov., sp. nov., isolated from a haloalkaline lake sediment sample – Wu et al. – Microbiology Society

Comparative analysis of bacterial diversity and community structure in the rhizosphere and root endosphere of two halophytes, Salicornia europaea and Glaux maritima, collected from two brackish lakes in Japan – Yamamoto et al. – Microbes and Environments

Fungal diversity in deep-sea sediments from Magellan seamounts environment of the western Pacific revealed by high-throughput Illumina sequencing – Yang et al. – Journal of Microbiology

Effect of Ferrous Iron Addition on Ammonium Nitrogen Removal and Microbial Communities in Horizontal Subsurface Flow Constructed Wetlands – Zhang et al. – Wetlands

Built environment

Microplastics negatively affect soil fauna but stimulate microbial activity: insights from a field-based microplastic addition experiment – Lin et al. – Proceedings of the Royal Society B

Shared bicycle microbial community: a potential antibiotic-resistant bacteria warehouse – Wu et al. – Folia Microbiologica

Microbial carrying capacity and carbon biomass of plastic marine debris – Zhao et al. – The ISME Journal

Food microbiology

Proteolysis, lipolysis, texture and sensory properties of cheese ripened by Monascus fumeus – Xia et al. – Food Research International


Announcement: Best practices for successfully writing and publishing a genome announcement in microbiology resource announcements – Hotopp et al. – Microbiology Resource Announcements


Flow-through stable isotope probing (Flow-SIP) minimizes cross-feeding in complex microbial communities – Mooshammer et al. – The ISME Journal

September 4, 2020

Good morning and get ready to enjoy a small, but diverse microbiome digest. Enjoy!

Commentary: Misconceptions about weather and seasonality must not misguide COVID-19 response – Colin J Carlson et al. – Nature Communications

Multi-site human microbiome
Relationship between the composition of the intestinal microbiota and the tracheal and intestinal colonization by opportunistic pathogens in intensive care patients – Candice Fontaine et al. – PLOS One

Human gut microbiome
Widespread transfer of mobile antibiotic resistance genes within individual gut microbiomes revealed through bacterial Hi-C – Alyssa G. Kent et al. – Nature Communications

Animal experiments
Review: Modulation of gut microbiota in healthy rats after exposure to nutritional supplements – Mirna Cool et al. – Gut Microbes

Animal microbiome
Anthrax toxin component, Protective Antigen, protects insects from bacterial infection – Saleem Alarme – PLOS Pathogens

Environmental gut bacteria in European honey bees (Apis mellifera) from Australia and their relationship to the chalkbrood disease – Sheba Khan et al. – PLOS One

Gut Microbiome Composition is Associated with Age and Memory Performance in Pet Dogs – Eniko Kubinyi et al. – Animals

Plant, root, and soil microbiome
Characterizing the nectar microbiome of the non-native tropical milkweed, Asclepias curassavica, in an urban environment – Magdalena L. Warren et al. – PLOS One

Water and extremophile microbiome
Book chapter:
Analyzing the Diversity of Microbial Communities Residing in Marine Ecosystems – Piyush Chandna et al. – In: Marine Biotechnology

Ten simple rules to power drug discovery with data science – Enrico Ferrero et al. – PLOS Computational Biology

Review: Sample pre-treatment procedures for the omics analysis of human gut microbiota: turning points, tips and tricks for gene sequencing and metabolomics – Elisa Zubeldia-Varela et al. – Journal of Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Analysis

Research Topic: Beyond Conventional Models: Expanding Experimental Systems for Animal-Microbiome Interaction Research

September 3, 2020

At the beginning of todays post I wanted to highlight some interesting recent articles on COVID-19 and in particular a recent trial demonstrating the utility of BCG for a trained immunity response to protect against respiratory infections in the elderly. Enjoy!

COVID-19 & Vaccines

Tracking the COVID-19 pandemic in Australia using genomics – Seemann et al. Nature Communications. 

A comparison of four serological assays for detecting anti–SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in human serum samples from different populations – Grzelak et al. Science Translational Medicine

Phase 1–2 Trial of a SARS-CoV-2 Recombinant Spike Protein Nanoparticle Vaccine – Keech et al. New England Journal of Medicine

ACTIVATE: Randomised clinical trial of BCG vaccination against infection in the elderly – Giamarellos-Bourboulis et al. Cell


General microbiome

Multi-omic Analysis of the Interaction between Clostridioides difficile Infection and Pediatric Inflammatory Bowel Disease – Bushman et al. Cell Host & Microbe

Gut mycobiome and its interaction with diet, gut bacteria and alzheimer’s disease markers in subjects with mild cognitive impairment: A pilot study – Nagpal et al. EBioMedicine

Relationship between the composition of the intestinal microbiota and the tracheal and intestinal colonization by opportunistic pathogens in intensive care patients – Fontaine et al. PLOS One

Human respiratory microbiome

Respiratory Bacteria Stabilize and Promote Airborne Transmission of Influenza A Virus – Rowe et al. mSystems

Animal microbiome

Uncovering the microbiome of invasive sympatric European brown hares and European rabbits in Australia – Shanmuganandam et al. PeerJ

Water and extremophile microbiome

Microbiome dynamics in the tissue and mucus of acroporid corals differ in relation to host and environmental parameters – Marchioro et al. PeerJ

Microbial Communities across Global Marine Basins Show Important Compositional Similarities by Depth – Miller et al. mBio. 

Phages and viruses

Metagenome Data on Intestinal Phage-Bacteria Associations Aids the Development of Phage Therapy against Pathobionts – Fujimoto et al. Cell Host & Microbe


BLAST-QC: automated analysis of BLAST results – Torkian et al. Environmental Microbiome


September 2, 2020

Greetings for the month of September: the Haervest-monath (Harvest Month). Today’s microbiome digest consists of a cool editorial article on hidden theatre of microbes. The digest also features two interesting reviews; first one detailing the role of skin microbiota in forensic sciences and the second one with focus on association of sponges and their microbiome.

Let’s celebrate the month of September with some fascinating microbiome studies.

There are flowers enough in the summertime,
More flowers than I can remember—
But none with the purple, gold, and red
That dye the flowers of September!

—Mary Howitt (1799-1888)

General microbiome
*Editorial: Unveiling the Hidden Theatre of Microbes – Böttcher T – ChemBioChem

Chitosan-chelated zinc modulates cecal microbiota and attenuates inflammatory response in weaned rats challenged with Escherichia coli – Feng et al – Journal of Microbiology

Multi-site human microbiome
Potential Associations Among Alteration of Salivary miRNAs, Saliva Microbiome Structure, and Cognitive Impairments in Autistic Children – Ragusa et al – Int. J. Mol. Sci.

Human respiratory microbiome
Review: The importance of airway and lung microbiome in the critically ill – Martin-Loeches et al – Critical Care

Human skin microbiome
A Novel Mycovirus Evokes Transcriptional Rewiring in the Fungus Malassezia and Stimulates Beta Interferon Production in Macrophages – Clancey et al – mBio

A Novel Virus Alters Gene Expression and Vacuolar Morphology in Malassezia Cells and Induces a TLR3-Mediated Inflammatory Immune Response – Park et al – mBio

*Review: Challenges in Human Skin Microbial Profiling for Forensic Science: A Review – Neckovic et al – Genes

Human gut microbiome
Context-aware dimensionality reduction deconvolutes gut microbial community dynamics – Martino et al – Nat Biotechnol

Animal microbiome
*The relationship between microbiomes and selective regimes in the sponge genus Ircinia – Kelly et al – bioRxiv

Flow cytometry with cell sorting and sequencing as a tool for the study of the Humboldt Current krill stomach microbiota – Henriquez-Castillo et al – bioRxiv

Microbes in the news
EurekAlert News: Researchers receive $3 million NSF grant to ‘understand the rules of life – Zhou J