April 1, 2021

General microbiome

Viral genomic, metagenomic and human transcriptomic characterization and prediction of the clinical forms of COVID-19 – Rodrigez et al. – PLOS Pathogens

A multiomics approach to identify host-microbe alterations associated with infection severity in diabetic foot infections: a pilot study – Radzieta – et al. – NPJ Biofilms and Microbiomes

Pregnancy and early life

Interactions between gut microbiota and metabolites modulate cytokine network imbalances in women with unexplained miscarriage – Liu et al. – NPJ Biofilms and Microbiomes

Developmental trajectory of the healthy human gut microbiota during the first 5 years of life – Roswall et al. – Cell Host & Microbiome

Human gut microbiome

Compositional change of gut microbiome and osteocalcin expressing endothelial progenitor cells in patients with coronary artery disease – Toya et al. – PLOS One

Stool metabolome-microbiota evaluation among children and adolescents with obesity, overweight, and normal-weight using 1H NMR and 16S rRNA gene profiling – Jaimes et al. – PLOS One

Gut dysbiosis and mortality in hemodialysis patients – Lin et al. – NPJ Biofilms and Microbiomes

[REVIEW]The Interplay between Diet, Gut Microbes, and Host Epigenetics in Health and Disease – Shock et al. – The Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry

[REVIEW]Circadian rhythms and the gut microbiome synchronize the host’s metabolic response to diet – Lopez et al. – Cell Metabolism

Animal experiments (mouse/rat experiments, chickens/pigs on different diets)

Meta-analysis identifies the effect of dietary multi-enzyme supplementation on gut health of pigs – Ramani et al. – Scientific Reports

Silicon-containing water intake confers antioxidant effect, gastrointestinal protection, and gut microbiota modulation in the rodents – Wu et al. – PLOS One

Animal microbiome (for animals in the wild)

[PREPRINT]16S rRNA Amplicon Sequencing of Bagworm Metisa plana Walker (Lepidoptera: Psychidae) – Ting et al. – bioRxiv

Water and extremophile microbiome (sea, rivers, lakes, glaciers, permafrost, high-salt)

Metagenomic analysis exploring taxonomic and functional diversity of bacterial communities of a Himalayan urban fresh water lake – Ahmad et al. – PLOS One

Geochemical and metagenomics study of a metal-rich, green-turquoise-coloured stream in the southern Swiss Alps – Buetti-Dinh – PLOS One

Phages and viruses

[REVIEW]The human virome: assembly, composition and host interactions – Liang & Bushman – Nature Reviews Microbiology

[PREPRINT]Diverse viruses carrying genes for microbial extremotolerance in the Atacama Desert hyperarid soil – Hwang et al. – bioRxiv

Bioinformatics

MCPdb: The bacterial microcompartment database – Ochoa et al. – PLOS One
[Twitter]97% identity cutoff applied on humans and related species – Matthew Hahn

Techniques

Single strain control of microbial consortia – Fedorec et al. – Nature Communications

Microbes and Art

A Cultural Triumph: Microbiology Student Makes A Petri Dish Masterpiece – McCammon – npr

March 12, 2021

Today’s digest is HUGE.

Read about the healthy urogenital microbiome profiling by culturomics, gutSMASH (Specialized Primary Metabolite Analysis From Anaerobic Bacteria), (sub)strains evolution in mice, and AMPSphere (a comprehensive catalog of antimicrobial peptides).

There are interesting results of a new metaanalysis of the neonatal microbiome, maternal strain inheritance, and persistence into adolescence, evaluation of the effect of long-term freezing storage temperature on fecal samples, and estimation of the bioinformatic carbon footprint using the freely available Green Algorithms calculator. Find out more about statistics & challenges in molecular microbiology (with a reproducible research appendix!).

NEWS: The Transbiome project is a community driven research program using crowdfunding and co-creation to discover the diversity of the neo-vaginal microbiome. You can support the project here.

Check out a list of awesome webinars, courses and podcasts. Happy Friday!

Gut microbiome

*A systematic analysis of metabolic pathways in the human gut microbiota – Victòria Pascal Andreu – bioRxiv

*Strain inheritance and neonatal gut microbiota development: A meta-analysis – Daniel Podlesny and W. Florian Fricke – International Journal of Medical Microbiology

Adaptive ecological processes and metabolic independence drive microbial colonization and resilience in the human gut – Andrea R. Watson – bioRixv

Effect of fecal microbiota transplantation on neurological restoration in a spinal cord injury mouse model: involvement of brain-gut axis – Yingli Jing – Microbiome

Review: Association between antibiotics and gut microbiome dysbiosis in children: systematic review and meta-analysis – Lucy McDonnell – Gut Microbes

Review: Salmonella versus the Microbiome – Andrew W. L. Rogers – Microbiology and Molecular Biology Reviews

Respiratory microbiome

Strain-Resolved Dynamics of the Lung Microbiome in Patients with Cystic Fibrosis – Marija Dmitrijeva – mBio

Oral microbiome

Review: Resilience of the oral microbiome – William G. Wade – Periodontology 2000

Skin microbiome

Skin microbiota and clinical associations in Netherton sindrome – Veera Sillanpää – JID Innovations

Urogenital microbiome

*Long-term stability of the urogenital microbiota of asymptomatic European women – Magdalena Ksiezarek – BMC Microbiology

Limosilactobacillus urinaemulieris sp. nov. and Limosilactobacillus portuensis sp. nov. isolated from urine of healthy women – Magdalena Ksiezarek – International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology

Vaginal microbiome

The structure and diversity of strain-level variation in vaginal bacteria – Brett A. Tortelli – Microbial Genomics

Obesity is associated with lower bacterial vaginosis prevalence in menopausal but not pre-menopausal women in a retrospective analysis of the Women’s Interagency HIV Study – Elizabeth Daubert – PlosOne

Bacterial biofilm formation on vaginal ring pessaries used for pelvic organ prolapse – Felicity G. Gould – International Urogynecology Journal

Animal microbiome

*Long-term storage of feces at −80 °C versus −20 °C is negligible for 16S rRNA amplicon profiling of the equine bacterial microbiome – Stefan Gavriliuc – PeerJ

Differences in the gut microbiomes of dogs and wolves: roles of antibiotics and starch – Yuting Liu – BMC Veterinary Research

An Expanded Gene Catalog of Mouse Gut Metagenomes – Jiahui Zhu – mSphere

Animal experiments

*Long-term evolution and short-term adaptation of microbiota strains and sub-strains in mice – Bahtiyar Yilmaz – Cell Host & Microbe

The gut mycobiome of healthy mice is shaped by the environment and correlates with metabolic outcomes in response to diet – Tahliyah S. Mims – Communications Biology

Functional genetics of human gut commensal Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron reveals metabolic requirements for growth across environments – Hualan Liu – Cell Reports

Tea polyphenols regulate gut microbiota dysbiosis induced by antibiotic in mice – Jie Li – Food Research International

Plant microbiome

Designing a home for beneficial plant microbiomes – Chunxu Song – Current Opinion in Plant Biology

Food

Review: Polymicrobial interaction between Lactobacillus and Saccharomyces cerevisiae: coexistence-relevant mechanisms – Zhenbo Xu – Critical Reviews in Microbiology

Viruses and phages

Viromes outperform total metagenomes in revealing the spatiotemporal patterns of agricultural soil viral communities – Christian Santos-Medellin – The ISME Journal

Review: Biases in Viral Metagenomics-Based Detection, Cataloguing and Quantification of Bacteriophage Genomes in Human Faeces, a Review – Julie Callanan – Microorganisms

Techniques

High molecular weight DNA extraction strategies for long-read sequencing of complex metagenomes – Florian Trigodet – bioRxiv

Bioinformatics

*AMPSphere: the worldwide survey of prokaryotic antimicrobial peptides – Célio Dias Santos-Júnior – Zenodo

*A Statistical Perspective on the Challenges in Molecular Microbial Biology – Pratheepa Jeganathan and Susan P. Holmes – arXiv

*The carbon footprint of bioinformatics – Jason Grealey – bioRxiv

*Make Interactive Complex Heatmaps in R – Zuguang Gu and Daniel Huebschmann – bioRxiv

Machine learning applications in microbial ecology, human microbiome studies, and environmental monitoring – Ryan B.Ghannam and Stephen M.Techtmann – Computational and Structural Biotechnology Journal

Tutorial: assessing metagenomics software with the CAMI benchmarking toolkit – Fernando Meyer – Nature Protocols

STATegra: Multi-Omics Data Integration – A Conceptual Scheme With a Bioinformatics Pipeline – Nuria Planell – Frontiers in Genetics

Exploring bacterial diversity via a curated and searchable snapshot of archived DNA sequences – Grace A. Blackwell – bioRxiv

clinker & clustermap.js: automatic generation of gene cluster comparison figures – Cameron L M Gilchrist & Yit-Heng Chooi – Bioinformatics

gapseq: informed prediction of bacterial metabolic pathways and reconstruction of accurate metabolic models – Johannes Zimmermann – Genome Biology

Webinars

mSystems Thinking Series: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Microbiology – ASM – March 26

The Microbiome Centers Consortium Seminar Series – weekly seminars featuring early career researchers – Thursdays

Americas Webinar: Mother’s Milk & Baby’s Bacteria: Discoveries from the CHILD Cohort Study – Meghan Azad – April 14

Courses & Workshops

Get R Done: R Tutorials video series – Chad C. Williams

Machine Learning in Genomics: Tools, Resources, Clinical Applications and Ethics – the NHGRI Genomic Data Science Working Group of the National Advisory Council for Human Genome Research – April 13-14

Podcast

February 2021 Pod: Global Chang‪e‬ – Bengtsson-Palme Lab – Microbiology Lab Pod

Enhancers with Molly Gasperini – Jacob Schreiber – The Bioinformatics Chat

Matthew Schechter: Metagenomics History Part 1 and 2 – Leo Elworth – The Bioinformatics and Beyond Podcast

Ep. 33 Oyster Microbiome with Dr. Rachel Diner – Julie Laurin – Planet B612

Art

UMich Microbial Masterpieces – Community for microbe enthusiasts and artists – Erica Gardner, Anna Urso, Bruna Iunes Sanches
*Check out their giant Winogradsky Panel in the Duderstadt Center gallery

February 4, 2021

Greetings from a very snowy Pittsburgh!

If you like getting dirty, today’s digest is for you! It includes a review on bat guano, two research articles about compost, four focused on soil research, and a preprint about fertilization with poultry manure.

Happy reading!

Events and jobs

February 1st to 14th: If you’re on twitter, check out #MicrobeValentinesDay! @AnneAMadden is posting 14 days of pink microbes in honor of Valentine’s Day under this hashtag!

Human skin microbiome

Gut microbiome profile in psoriatic patients treated and untreated with biologic therapy – Valentini et al. – The Journal of Dermatology

Human gut microbiome

Preprint – Impact of a human gut microbe on Vibrio cholerae host colonization through biofilm enhancement – Barrasso et al. – bioRxiv

Review: Gut microbiota-mediated pesticide toxicity in humans: methodological issues and challenges in risk assessment of pesticides – Utembe and Kamng’ona – Chemosphere

Animal experiments

Effects of thallium exposure on intestinal microbial community and organ functions in zebrafish (Danio rerio) – Wang et al. – Elementa: Science of the Anthropocene

Is intestinal bacterial diversity enhanced by trans-species spread in the mixed-species flock of hooded crane (Grus monacha) and bean goose (Anser fabalis) wintering in the lower and middle Yangtze river floodplain? – Yang and Zhou – Animals

Animal microbiome

Review: The microbiome of bat guano: for what is this knowledge important? – Dimkić et al. – Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

Tick microbiomes in neotropical forest fragments are best explained by tick-associated and environmental factors rather than host blood source – Kueneman et al. – Microbial Ecology

Plant, root, and soil microbiome

Survival rates of microbial communities from livestock waste to soils: a comparison between compost and digestate – Akari and Uchida – Applied and Environmental Soil Science

Year, location, and variety impact on grape-, soil-, and leaf-associated fungal microbiota of Arkansas-grown table grapes – Cureau et al. – Microbial Ecology

Preprint: Agricultural fertilization with poultry manure results in persistent environmental contamination with the pathogen Clostridioides difficile – Frentrup et al. – bioRxiv

Impacts of invasive Australian Acacias on soil bacterial community composition, microbial enzymatic activities, and nutrient availability in Fynbos soils – Keet et al. – Microbial Ecology

A novel carboxylesterase derived from a compost metagenome exhibiting high stability and activity towards high salinity – Lu and Daniel – Genes

A two-year field study of nickel-agromining using Odontarrhena chalcidica co-cropped with a legume on an ultramafic soil: temporal variation in plant biomass, nickel yields and taxonomic and bacterial functional diversity – Saad et al. – Plant and Soil

Bacterial response to soil property changes caused by wood ash from wildfire in forest soils around mining areas: Relevance of bacterial community composition, carbon and nitrogen cycling – Zhang et al. – Journal of Hazardous Materials

Water and extremophile microbiome

Microcystis blooms aggravate the diurnal alternation of nitrification and nitrate reduction in the water column in Lake Taihu – Chen et al. – Science of the Total Environment

Temperature and microbial interactions drive the deterministic assembly processes in sediments of hot springs – He et al. – Science of the Total Environment

Cadmium sulfide nanoparticle biomineralization and biofilm formation mediate cadmium resistance of the deep‐sea bacterium Pseudoalteromonas sp. MT33b – Ma and Sun – Environmental Microbiology Reports

Recovery of freshwater microbial communities after extreme rain events is mediated by cyclic succession – Shabarova et al. – Nature Microbiology

Built environment

Preprint: Half-life of biodegradable plastics in the marine environment depends on material, habitat, and climate zone – Lott et al. – bioRxiv

Water flushing irremovable biofilms on support material in dynamic membrane bioreactor: formation, composition, and microbial community – Huang et al. – Chemosphere

Phages and viruses

Preprint: Rampant prophage movement among transient competitors drives rapid adaptation during infection – Marshall et al. – bioRxiv

November 26, 2020

Greetings from Pittsburgh!

Today’s digest is heavy on environmental microbiology work, especially plant, root, and soil microbiome studies. I also want to highlight a fun research paper (and paired Wired article) on the microbiome of da Vinci’s drawings.

Happy reading! And for all of those in the U.S. who are celebrating the Thanksgiving holiday, please be safe and follow all local COVID precautions.


Multi-site human microbiome

Mycobiome changes in the vitreous of post fever retinitis patients – Arunasri et al. – PLOS ONE

Review: Metabolomics analysis of microbiota-gut-brain axis in neurodegenerative and psychiatric diseases – Konjevod et al. – Journal of Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Analysis

Animal experiments

Cerumen microbial community shifts between healthy and otitis affected dogs – Borriello et al. – PLOS ONE

Plant, root, and soil microbiome

The difference between cellulolytic ‘culturomes’ and microbiomes inhabiting two contrasting soil types – Evdokimova et al. – PLOS ONE

Diversity of bacteria populations associated with different thallus regions of the brown alga Laminaria digitata – Ihua et al. – PLOS ONE

High nitrogen concentration alter microbial community in Allium fistulosum rhizosphere – Zhao et al. – PLOS ONE

Diversity, function and assembly of mangrove root-associated microbial communities at a continuous fine-scale – Zhuang et al. – npj Biofilms and Microbiomes

Water and extremophile microbiome

Shifts in methanogenic archaea communities and methane dynamics along a subtropical estuarine land use gradient – Euler et al. – PLOS ONE

Built environment

**The microbiome of Leonardo da Vinci’s drawings: A bio-archive of their history – Piñar et al. – Frontiers in Microbiology

Microbes in the news

**Meet the microbes living on Da Vinci’s iconic sketches – Simon – Wired

Science, publishing, and career

Postdocs under pressure: ‘Can I even do this any more?’ – Woolston – Nature

November 5, 2020

Hello, friends!

I’m an American who grew up in North Carolina, lived in Georgia for many years, and now counts Pennsylvania as home. All of this is to say, I’ve been especially consumed by the US election this morning and so today’s digest is tailor made to distract me for a few hours. It contains a heavy dose of general microbiome, environmental microbiology, and microbial ecology articles. If you need a bigger distraction than usual, I’ve highlighted a few articles that I am particularly looking forward to reading and am using this space as an opportunity to reintroduce myself and share why these articles have peaked my interest.

I completed my PhD research on the cockroach gut microbiome and through this work, I realized how complex microbiome-host-environmental interactions can be. Because of this, my first highlighted article is a review about cockroach-associated microbes. Currently, I work in a national lab studying environmental-associated microbes (and their functional capacity!) in a variety of different energy-associated environments. It’s no wonder I’m excited to read the second highlighted article focused on novel soil microbes found in an abandoned coal mine! I’m also very hungry at the moment, so as soon I read the phrase “smoked cow cheese” I was motivated to explore my cheese drawer as well as think more about microbial food safety and the microbial production of favor compounds. Finally, I love musical theater and science outreach, so I’m delighted to share a mouldy article that combines both passions.

Happy reading, everyone!


General microbiome

Review: The pneumococcal social network – Aggarawal et al. – PLOS Pathogens

Expanding magnetic organelle biogenesis in the domain Bacteria – Lin et al. – Microbiome

Gene duplication drives genome expansion in a major lineage of Thaumarchaeota – Sheridan et al. – Nature Communications

Metatranscriptomic analysis reveals active microbes and genes responded to short-term Cr(VI) stress – Yu et al. – Ecotoxicology

Effects of heavy ion particle irradiation on spore germination of Bacillus spp. from extremely hot and cold environments – Zammuto et al. – Life
Human gut microbiome

Gut microbiome

Gut microbiota ecology: Biodiversity estimated from hybrid neutral-niche model increases with health status and aging – Sala et al. – PLOS ONE

Implication of gut microbiota in the physiology of rats intermittently exposed to cold and hypobaric hypoxia – Ramos-Romero et al. – PLOS ONE

Animal microbiome

Exploring the resident gut microbiota of stranded odontocetes: high similarities between two dolphin species Tursiops truncatus and Stenella coeruleoalba – Abdelrhman et al. – Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the UK

**Review: Bacteria associated with cockroaches: health risk or biotechnological opportunity? – Guzman & Vilcinskas – Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

Water and extremophile microbiome

Impact of land uses, drought, flood, wildfire, and cascading events on water quality and microbial communities: A review and analysis – Mishra et al. – Journal of Hydrology

Dams shift microbial community assembly and imprint nitrogen transformation along the Yangtze River – Gao et al. – Water Research

Built environment

**Isolation and characterization of soil bacteria from an abandoned coal mine in southeast Kansas – Bechtold et al. – BioOne Complete

Review: Understanding building-occupant-microbiome interactions toward healthy built environments – Li et al. – Frontiers of Environmental Science & Engineering

Food microbiology

**Microbial quality of smoked cow cheese “Parencia” – Kačániová et al. – Scientific Papers: Animal Science and Biotechnologies

Phages and viruses

Virome of bat guano from nine northern California roosts – Li et al. – Journal of Virology

Bioinformatics

The IMG/M data management and analysis system v.6.0: new tools and advanced capabilities – Chen et al. – Nucleic Acids Research

PhANNs, a fast and accurate tool and web server to classify phage structural proteins – Cantu et al. – PLOS Computational Biology

Techniques

Low-cost biofuel-powered autoclaving machine for use in rural health care centres – Ahmed et al. – Journal of Medical Engineering & Technology

**‘The Mould that Changed the World’: Quantitative and qualitative evaluation of children’s knowledge and motivation for behavioural change following participation in an antimicrobial resistance musical – Hall et al. – PLOS ONE

Harnessing the power of eDNA metabarcoding for the detection of deep-sea fishes – McClenaghan et al. – PLOS ONE

August 21, 2020

Events
HAPPENING TODAY: Microbiome sequencing in high-host and low biomass samples. August 21, 2020.

Webinar Series on the Gut-Brain Axis and the Microbiome
August 28, 2020 – September 25, 2020

Funding
Functional effects of the human gut microbiome on autism. Biocodex Microbiota Foundation

Human microbiome
Focus on Microbiome in Health and Disease – A special microbiome issue in Cell Host Microbe

REVIEW: The Impact of the Microbiome on Immunity to Vaccination in Humans. Sanne E. de Jong et al. Cell Host & Microbe.

REVIEW: The Gut Microbiota and Unhealthy Aging: Disentangling Cause from Consequence. Erica N. DeJong et al. Cell Host & Microbe.

Helminth coinfection and COVID-19: An alternate hypothesis. Russell Hays et al. PLoS Negleced Tropical Diseases.

Gut microbiome
REVIEW: Mitochondria, the gut microbiome and ROS. and ROS. J. William O.Ballard & Samuel G. Towarnicki. Cellular Signalling.

Stool Microbiome Profiling of Patients with Metastatic Renal Cell Carcinoma Receiving Anti–PD-1 Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors. Nicholas J. Salgia et al. European Urology.

Programing of an Intravascular Immune Firewall by the Gut Microbiota Protects against Pathogen Dissemination during Infection. Braedon McDonald et al. Cell Host & Microbe

Oral microbiome
Analysis of microbial changes in the tonsillar formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissue of Chinese patients with IgA nephropathy. Anchao Zhu. Pathology – Research and Practice

Early life microbiome
Breastmilk Feeding Practices Are Associated with the Co-Occurrence of Bacteria in Mothers’ Milk and the Infant Gut: the CHILD Cohort Study. Kelsey Fehr et al. Cell Host & Microbe.

Animal microbiome
Effects of Urbanization and Landscape on Gut Microbiomes in White-Crowned Sparrows. Mae Berlow. Microbial Ecology

Built environment
Passenger-surface microbiome interactions in the subway of Mexico City. Daniela Vargas-Robles et al. PLoS One.

Plant, root, and soil microbiome
Plant resistance and leaf chemical characteristic jointly shape phyllosphere bacterial community. Tian Xueliang. World Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology.

The role of land management and elevation in shaping soil microbial communities: Insights from the Central European Alps. Nadine Praega. Soil Biology and Biochemistry.

Composition, predicted functions, and co-occurrence networks of fungal and bacterial communities_ Links to soil organic carbon under long-term fertilization in a rice-wheat cropping system. Jie Chen. European Journal of Soil Biology

Diversity and structure of prokaryotic communities within organic and conventional farming systems in central highlands of Kenya. Edward Nderitu Karanja et al. PLoS One.

Water and wastewater
Turning harmful algal biomass to electricity by microbial fuel cell: A sustainable approach for waste management. Jafar Ali. Environmental Pollution.

Combining physicochemical properties and microbiome data to evaluate the water quality of South African drinking water production plants. Tawanda E. Maguvu et al. PLoS One.

Viruses
They are what you eat: Shaping of viral populations through nutrition and consequences for virulence. Rebekah Honce & Stacey Schultz-Cherry. PLoS Pathogens.

Bioinformatics
Assembly methods for nanopore-based metagenomic sequencing: a comparative study. Adriel Latorre-Pérez. Scientific Report.

Completion of draft bacterial genomes by long-read sequencing of synthetic genomic pools. Hooman Derakhshani et al. BMC Genomics.

Modeling microbial cross-feeding at intermediate scale portrays community dynamics and species coexistence. Chen Liao et al. PLoS Computational Biology

Pre-print
Bacterial modification of the host glycosaminoglycan heparan sulfate modulates SARS-CoV-2 infectivity. Cameron Martino et al. bioRxiv

Evaluation of Compatibility of 16S rRNA V3V4 and V4 Amplicon Libraries for Clinical Microbiome Profiling. Po-Yu Liu et al.bioRxiv

Shirin’s non-microbiology picks
MICROBIOME ART: François-Joseph Lapointe, when biology meets art. Jihane Mossalim. Convergence Initiative.

BEHIND THE PAPER: Early-life microbiota diversification facilitates enterocyte proliferation. Michael Dougherty. Nature Microbiology Research Community

JOP OPPURTUNITY: PhD positions in the ecology and evolution of metabolic cross-feeding interactions in soil-living bacterial communities and the gut microbiota in protecting the host against intestinal colonisation by multidrug-resistant organisms

June 2, 2020

Happy Month of June to all,
June serves as the national month for Alzheimer’s and brain awareness. So I will start today’s digest with some news articles about the same.
Further the digest covers some very fascinating research articles about how the microbiome influences transcriptional profile in Drosophila melanogaster to peripheral blood microbial signatures in COPD. Digest also features some awesome microbe related science communication articles.
Enjoy reading!!!
Have a Safe, Healthy, Happy, and Productive month ahead.


Alzheimer’s and brain awareness news posts

Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month 2020 – Bankston – ASBMB Today

Could the gut microbiome be linked to autism? – Svoboda – Nature Outlook

General microbiome
*Interactions between the microbiome and mating influence the female’s transcriptional profile in Drosophila melanogaster – Delbare et al – bioRxiv

Phenotypic changes of bacteria through opportunity and global methylation leads to antibiotic resistance – Neerathilingam et al – bioRxiv

Human nearly-sterile sites
Peripheral blood microbial signatures in COPD – Morrow et al – bioRxiv

Human gut microbiome
Prebiotics and community composition influence gas production of the human gut microbiota – Yu et al – bioRxiv

Short-term High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) Exercise Does Not Affect Gut Bacterial Community Diversity or Composition of Lean and Overweight Men -Rettedal et al – Experimental Physiology

Animal experiments
Integrative omics analysis of the termite gut system adaptation to Miscanthus diet identifies lignocellulose degradation enzymes – Clusinska et al – Communications Biology

Water and extremophile microbiome
Phylum-level Diversity of the Microbiome of the Extremophilic Basidiomycete Fungus Pisolithus Arhizus (Scop.) Rauschert: An Island of Biodiversity in a Thermal Soil Desert – Culling et al – MicrobiologyOpen

Food microbiology
Lactobacillus Rhamnosus 2016SWU.05.0601 Regulates Immune Balance in Ovalbumin-Sensitized Mice by Modulating the Immune-Related Transcription Factors Expression and Gut Microbiota – Song et al – Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture

Techniques
Harnessing Ultrasound-Stimulated Phase Change Contrast Agents to Improve Antibiotic Efficacy Against Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus Biofilms – Durham et al – bioRxiv

Microbiome Science communication articles
The hunt for a healthy microbiome – Eisenstein – Nature Outlook

The complex relationship between drugs and the microbiome – Savage -Nature Outlook

The Infant Gut Microbiome and Probiotics that Work – Smilowitz and Taft – The Scientist

Clearing up of toxic pollutants using a bacterial protein

A science communication commentary on a recently published paper


Most pollutants are introduced in our environment in the form of herbicides, pesticides, and industrial effluents. The aromatic phenolic compounds, produced by a variety of industries, including phenol-formaldehyde resin, petrochemical plants, coal conversion, and leather processing make up for a major percentage of these pollutants. Improper treatment of these toxic pollutants can lead to heavily contaminated soil and groundwater.

Microorganisms particularly the bacterial species termed as Pseudomonas sp. have been used for a long time to clean up phenol from water in treatment plants. One such (methyl) phenol-degrading strain Pseudomonas putida KCTC 1452 has been studied with respect to its metabolic pathways involved in biodegradation.  The bacterium uses a protein called as DmpR, an acronym for di-methyl phenol regulator, for phenol degradation. While DmpR protein has been used in biosensors for detection of  pollutants in environment, the exact mechanism of DmpR activation has puzzled researchers for many years.

A recent study made a breakthrough by solving the molecular structure of the protein, DmpR when bound to phenol. The challenge was overcome by an international team of researchers from three different countries. Scientists from the Korea Research Institute of Bioscience and Biotechnology (KRIBB), South Korea worked together with scientists from the Kavli Institute of Nanoscience Delft, Netherlands and the Department of Molecular Biology, Umea University, Sweden to understand the mechanism of DmpR by solving its phenol-bound crystal structure. This study published in Nature Communications, provides valuable insights into the oligomerization and the signal transduction mechanism of DmpR, which eventually results in degradation of phenolic pollutants.

The team led by Dr. Eui Jeon Woo at the Disease Target Structure Research Center, KRIBB and  Dr. Chirlmin Joo at the Department of Bionanoscience, at the Kavli Institute pioneered the DmpR structural studies advancing the DmpR biosensor technology field. Their discovery of the tetrameric oligomerization state, in contrast to previously thought hexameric state, of the protein helped in understanding its binding to signal transduction factors. The researchers also discovered that protein itself does not utilize energy from hydrolysis of ATP, the cellular currency, to attain oligomeric state but rather directs the energy towards signal transduction and transcriptional activation of proteins involved in the (methyl)phenol-degradative system. With a better understanding of this protein structure and function, highly sensitive whole-cell biosensors can be engineered which can sense and degrade these toxic pollutants. Such sensors can help to prevent accumulation of toxic chemicals that could otherwise cause serious ecological damage as well as contaminate food supplies.  Similarly, DmpR related proteins could also be developed as biosensors that can be used to test different pollutant levels present in the water bodies for protection of the aquatic flora and fauna, thus helping towards preserving ecological niches.

Citation: Park, K., Kim, S., Lee, S. et al. Tetrameric architecture of an active phenol-bound form of the AAA+ transcriptional regulator DmpR. Nat Commun 11, 2728 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-16562-5


Arti Dumbrepatil is a science writer. She did her postdoctoral work at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA. During her tenure at the University of Michigan, she has worked as a Science Communication Fellow (at the Natural History Museum, UMICH) and as a Science Communication Writer (LSA, UMICH). Arti continues to write as a contributing science writer to American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB),Microbiome Digest,Bio Voice News.

Twitter @rtisciwrites

May 28, 2020

Hello and welcome to today’s microbiome digest! It’s a compact digest, but quite diverse. You will find a study investigating the effect of high-fat diet in Drosophila found a microbiota-dependent activation of stem-cells; electronic cigarettes were found to negatively influence the oral microbiome, and glycan epitopes present on enveloped viruses (as COVID-19) can be targeted and neutralized by human antibodies against these foreign glycan structures.
Finally, a helpful article during Corona-times, when more and more courses and meetings are held online, features the use of FAIR training material: Ten simple rules for making training materials FAIR. Enjoy!


COVID-19

Is social connectedness a risk factor for the spreading of COVID-19 among older adults? The Italian paradox – Giuseppe Liotta – PLOS ONE


General microbiome

Review: Enhancing bacterial survival through phenotypic heterogeneity – Leila M. Reyes Ruiz – PLOS PATHOGENS

Human respiratory microbiome

Adverse effects of electronic cigarettes on the disease-naive oral microbiome – Sukirth M. Ganesan – Science Advances

Human gut microbiome

Preprint: Shotgun Metagenomics of 361 elderly women reveals gut microbiome change in bone mass loss – Qi Wang – BioRxiv

Permissive microbiome characterizes human subjects with a neurovascular disease cavernous angioma – Sean P. Polster – Nature Communications

Persistent Diarrhea in Patients With Crohn’s Disease After Mucosal Healing Is Associated With Lower Diversity of the Intestinal Microbiome and Increased Dysbiosis – Karen Boland – Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology

Fecal microbiota transplantation in systemic sclerosis: A double-blind, placebo-controlled randomized pilot trial – Havard Fretheim – PLOS ONE


Animal experiments

A high-fat diet induces a microbiota-dependent increase in stem cell activity in the Drosophila intestine – Jakob con Frieling – PLOS GENETICS

The cecal and fecal microbiomes and metabolomes of horses before and after metronidazole administration – Carolyn E. Arnold – PLOS ONE

Plant, root, and soil microbiome

Functional diversity of rhizosphere soil microbial communities in response to different tillage and crop residue retention in a double-cropping rice field – Haiming Tang – PLOS ONE

Water and extremophile microbiome

Microbiome analysis of healthy and diseased sponges Lubomirskia baicalensis by using cell cultures of primmorphs – Lubov Chernogor – PeerJ

Built environment

The use of ozone gas for the inactivation of Bacillus anthracis and Bacillus subtilis spores on building materials – Joseph P. Wood – PLOS ONE


Phages and viruses

* Harnessing the natural anti-glycan immune response to limit the transmission of enveloped viruses such as SARS-CoV-2 – Adrien Breiman – PLOS PATHOGENS

Review: A viral journey to the brain: Current considerations and future developments – Nilda Vanesa Ayala-Nunez – PLOS PATHOGENS

Bioinformatics

Preprint: A global data-driven census of Salmonella small proteins and their potential functions in bacterial virulence – Elisa Venturini – BioRxiv

Techniques

Preprint: Fluorescent secreted bacterial effectors reveal an intravacuolar replication compartment for Listeria monocytogenes – Caroline Peron Cane – BioRxiv


Science, publishing, and career

2 Art Gallery Shows to Explore From Home – The New York Times – Check out the art by Anika Yi


Judith’s non-microbiology picks

* Ten simple rules for making training materials FAIR – Leyla Garcia – PLOS COMPUTATIONAL BIOLOGY

May 22, 2020

We’ve got a decently sized digest today with a lot of environmental microbe papers, including descriptions of novel species. There is also the Cell paper (highlighted) from Peter Turnbaugh’s group on ketogenic diets and the gut microbiome, which has been getting a lot of press. For new bioinformatic and other techniques, we have a new R package to predict functional profiles in Tax4Fun2, an assessment of phylogenetic rooting methods for bacteria, and a description of fiber intervention used in undergraduate classes for active learning.

 Have a great weekend!

Events

Today is the last day of the Virtual Microbiome Summit.

Pregnancy and early life

Women’s multisite microbial modulation during pregnancy – Luiz G. Sparvoli – Microbial Pathogenesis

Multi-site human microbiome

Review: Bi-Directional Interactions Between Microbiota and Ionizing Radiation in Head and Neck and Pelvic Radiotherapy-Clinical Relevance – Nidhya Teresa Joseph – International Journal of Radiation Biology

Human oral microbiome

Defining the oral microbiome by whole-genome sequencing and resistome analysis: the complexity of the healthy picture – Elisabetta Caselli – BMC Microbiology

Human gut microbiome

Ketogenic diets alter the gut microbiome resulting in decreased intestinal Th17 cells – Qi Yan Ang – Cell

Preprint: Host genetic and environmental factors shape the human gut resistome – Caroline I. Le Roy – bioRxiv

MinION Sequencing of colorectal cancer tumour microbiomes—A comparison with amplicon-based and RNA-Sequencing – William S. Taylor – PLOS One (Originally posted to the Digest as a pre-print, now published)

Animal experiments

Broilers divergently selected for digestibility differ for their digestive microbial ecosystems – Marion Borey – PLOS One

Dietary Isomalto/Malto‐Polysaccharides Increase Fecal Bulk and Microbial Fermentation in Mice – Rima H. Mistry – Molecular Nutrition and Food Research

Longitudinal Effects of Dietary Oxidized Lipids on the Gut Microbiome and Mycobiome in Pigs – Folagbayi Arowolo – FASEB Journal

Animal microbiome

Single-cell amplicon sequencing reveals community structures and transmission trends of protist-associated bacteria in a termite host – Michael E. Stephens – PLOS One

Plant, root, and soil microbiome

Xylella fastidiosa subsp. pauca and olive produced lipids moderate the switch adhesive versus non-adhesive state and viceversa – Valeria Scala – PLOS One

Mitochondrial genome sequence of Phytophthora sansomeana and comparative analysis of Phytophthora mitochondrial genomes – Guohong Cai – PLOS One

nirS-type denitrifying bacterial communities in relation to soil physicochemical conditions and soil depths of two montane riparian meadows in North China. – Xiaoli Han – Environmental Science and Pollution Research

Tissue-Specific Dynamics in the Endophytic Bacterial Communities in Arctic Pioneer Plant Oxyria digyna – Cindy Given – Frontiers in Plant Science

Effects of Cultured Root and Soil Microbial Communities on the Disease of Nicotiana tabacum Caused by Phytophthora nicotianae – Tianbo Liu – Frontiers in Microbiology

Novel putative rhizobial species with different symbiovars nodulate Lotus creticus and their differential preference to distinctive soil properties – M Rejili – FEMS Microbiology Letters

Water, air, and extremophile microbiome

The microbiome of alpine snow algae shows a specific inter-kingdom connectivity and algae-bacteria interactions with supportive capacities – Lisa Krug – ISME Journal

Variation of near surface atmosphere microbial communities at an urban and a suburban site in Philadelphia, PA, USA – JD Stewart – Science of the Total Environment

Pilot-scale petroleum refinery wastewaters treatment systems: performance and microbial communities’ analysis – Fatma Karray – Process Safety and Environmental Protection

Adverse effects of levofloxacin and oxytetracycline on aquatic microbial communities – Zhigao Zhou – Science of the Total Environment

Application of microbial network analysis to discriminate environmental heterogeneity in Fildes Peninsula, Antarctica – Qian Liu – Marine Pollution Bulletin

Tools for successful proliferation: diverse strategies of nutrient acquisition by a benthic cyanobacterium – HS Tee – ISME Journal

Metabolic diversity and co-occurrence of multiple Ferrovum species at an acid mine drainage site – Christen L. Grettenberger – BMC Microbiology

Halocatena pleomorpha gen. nov. sp. nov., an extremely halophilic archaeon of family Halobacteriaceae isolated from saltpan soil – Ashish Verma – IJSEM

Unveiling Cultivable and Uncultivable Halophilic Bacteria Inhabiting Marakkanam Saltpan, India and Their Potential for Biotechnological Applications – Jojy John – Geomicrobiology Journal

Flavobacterium profundi sp. nov., isolated from a deep-sea seamount – Qian Wang – IJSEM

Food microbiology

Molecular epidemiology, genetic diversity and antimicrobial resistance of Staphylococcus aureus isolated from chicken and pig carcasses, and carcass handlers – Onyinye J. Okorie-Kanu – PLOS One

Traditional milk transformation schemes in Côte d’Ivoire and their impact on the prevalence of Streptococcus bovis complex bacteria in dairy products – Aimé R Sanhoun – PLOS One

Comparison of Microbial Communities and Amino Acid Metabolites in Different Traditional Fermentation Starters Used during the Fermentation of Hong Qu Glutinous Rice Wine – Zhang-Cheng Liang – Food Research International

Preprint: Monitoring the microbiome for food safety and quality using deep shotgun sequencing – Kristen L. Beck – bioRxiv

Viruses

Are pangolins the intermediate host of the 2019 novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2)? – Ping Liu – PLOS Pathogens

Vector competence of Aedes aegypti from New Caledonia for the four recent circulating dengue virus serotypes – Olivia O’Connor – PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases

Bioinformatics

Tax4Fun2: prediction of habitat-specific functional profiles and functional redundancy based on 16S rRNA gene sequences – Franziska Wemheuer – Environmental Microbiome

Techniques

Assessing the accuracy of phylogenetic rooting methods on prokaryotic gene families – Taylor Wade – PLOS One

Science education techniques: Fiber Force: A Fiber Diet Intervention in an Advanced Course-Based Undergraduate Research Experience (CURE) Course – Julia Massimelli Sewall – Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education

Science and art

This photographer creates prints with algae.

Non-microbiology picks:

Herd of fuzzy green “glacier mice” baffles scientists.