General microbiology and science digest, October 27, 2014

A new Shiny R tool for microbial communities, virus-like pictures in human distal gut, interaction between oral bacteria, dancing your PhD, and X-ray movies of human joints in action.

Bioinformatics

* Seed: a user-friendly tool for exploring and visualizing microbial community data
Daniel Beck – Bioinformatics

“Seed is written in R using the Shiny library. This provides access to powerful R based functions and libraries through a simple user interface. “

Viruses and phages

With cool pictures: Characterization of virus-like particles associated with the human faecal and caecal microbiota – Lesley Hoyles – Research in Microbiology

“Various methodologies for the recovery of VLPs from faeces were tested and optimized, including successful down-stream processing of such samples for the purpose of an in-depth electron microscopic analysis, pulsed-field gel electrophoresis and efficient DNA recovery.”

Transcriptomics / Proteomics / Metabolomics

Thermophilic microbial cellulose decomposition and methanogenesis pathways recharacterized by metatranscriptomic and metagenomic analysis – Yu Xia – Scientific Reports

“The metatranscriptomic recharacterization in the present study captured microbial enzymes at the unprecedented scale of 40,000 active genes belonged to 2,269 KEGG functions were identified.”

Proteomic and transcriptional analysis of interaction between oral microbiota Porphyromonas gingivalis and Streptococcus oralis – Kazuhiko Maeda – Journal of Proteome Research

“Here, using shotgun proteomics we examined the molecular basis of mixed-biofilm formation by P. gingivalis with Streptococcus oralis.”

Review: Toward the comprehensive understanding of the gut ecosystem via metabolomics-based integrated omics approach – Wanping Aw, Shinji Fukuda – Seminars in Immunopathology

“In this review, we discuss in detail the relationship between gut microbiota and its metabolites … in the host health and etiopathogenesis of various pathological states such as multiple sclerosis, autism, obesity, diabetes, and chronic kidney disease. “

More Microbiology

Biofilms: Five-Star Accommodations for the Aerobically Challenged – Robert A. Cramer – Current Biology

“A recent study finds that fungal biofilms are capable of supporting growth of anaerobic bacteria, suggesting that these fungi can promote bacterial growth in otherwise toxic environments.”

Microbes in the news

* Sorry, Your Gut Bacteria Are Not the Answer to All Your Health Problems – Gabrielle Canon – Mother Jones

“We’re told that tweaks to the microbiome can cure everything from allergies to Ebola. Not exactly, say experts. …despite the optimism, some researchers caution that much of what we hear about microbiome science isn’t always, well, science. “

* Orthopedic surgeon studies bear bacteria to aid bear attack victims – Healio

“Working with the Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks, Iwersen has been collecting cultures of bacteria from the mouths of grizzly bears and correlating them with the types of bacteria found in the bear bites on patients. “

Mexican scientist investigates intestinal bacteria – BetaWired

“Recent findings of the investigator Xicotencatl Gracida Canales…at Harvard University in Cambridge, USA, suggest that in the absence of an intestinal shield, variations in bacterial metabolism can affect reproductive cells and cause infertility in an animal model called C. Elegans.”

Algae-Based Material Takes On Body Odor – Dana Dovey – NewsWeek

“A team of Swedish researchers from the KTH Royal Institute of Technology has found a way to eliminate the growth of this smell-inducing bacteria using one of nature’s best antimicrobials, algae.”

MoBE Postdoctoral Fellowship: From Source to Tap: Linking the Drinking Water Microbiome to Human Health – Sarah Haig – MicroBEnet

“We hypothesize that the microbial communities in municipally treated drinking water are a source of opportunistic pathogens, posing a risk to people with cystic fibrosis”

Science, publishing, career

Is NIH policy the best way to sex equality in studies? – Bethany Brookshire – Science News

“The end goal will be to make sure that NIH-funded scientists “balance male and female cells and animals in preclinical studies in all future [grant] applications” to the NIH.”

Some suggestions for having diverse speakers at meetings – Jonathan Eisen – The Tree of Life

“Some people were asking what one can do to improve gender diversity at meetings so I thought I would post this which I was meaning to do anyway “

‘Dance Your Ph.D.’ finalists announced – John Bohannon – Science

“Rather than reading a paper about it, why not watch a dance? A ballet and a modern dance on those very topics have made it into the finals of this year’s “Dance Your Ph.D.” contest.”

Bik’s Picks

Interactive world map of vaccine-preventable outbreaks – Council for Foreign Relations

“This interactive map visually plots global outbreaks of measles, mumps, whooping cough, polio, rubella, and other diseases that are easily preventable by inexpensive and effective vaccines.”

Dietary cocoa flavanols reverse age-related memory decline in mice – Science Daily

“Dietary cocoa flavanols —- naturally occurring bioactives found in cocoa —- reversed age-related memory decline in healthy older adults, according to a new study. Flavanols are also found naturally in tea leaves and in certain fruits and vegetables”

Amazing X-ray GIFs Show Joints In Motion – Lisa Winter – IFL Science

“Cameron Drake of San Francisco has created a collection of magnificent images showing joints in motion. He was aided by orthopedic physician Dr. Noah Weiss and the finished product is completely amazing. “

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General microbiology and science, October 14, 2014

A living review of multivariate techniques, spatial organizations of bacterial genomes, and metabolomics of wetlands, pigs, marine bacteria and free-living humans.

Bioinformatics

* A Guide to Statistical Analysis in Microbial Ecology: a community-focused, living review of multivariate data analyses – Pier Luigi Buttigieg – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“we present the GUide to STatistical Analysis in Microbial Ecology (GUSTA ME): a dynamic, web-based resource providing accessible descriptions of numerous multivariate techniques relevant to microbial ecologists”

Techniques

New approaches to understanding the spatial organization of bacterial genomes – Tung BK Le, Michael T Laub – Current Opinion in Microbiology

“Here, we review the current arsenal of techniques used to query chromosome structure”

Development of Clamping Probe for Rare DNA Detection using Universal Primers – Meyong il Kim – E-FAS Journal

“In this study, we evaluated the efficiency of rare gene detection for two kinds of clamping probes which were successfully utilized for eukaryotic symbiont analysis”

Metabolomics

Microbial community metabolic function in subsurface flow constructed wetlands of different designs – Mark Button – Ecological Engineering

“Microbial community function followed a clear gradient along the flow direction. Metabolic profiles were system specific (horizontal, vertical, and aerated).”

A high fat, high choleststerol diet leads to changes in metabolite patterns in pigs – a metabolomic study – Jianghao Sun – Food Chemistry

“Extracts of plasma, fecal and urine samples from pigs fed high fat or basal regular diets for 11 weeks were analyzed using ultra-high performance liquid chromatography with high-resolution mass spectrometry “

Free-living individuals – as in “not in prison”?
An NMR metabolomics approach reveals a combined-biomarkers model in a wine interventional trial with validation in free-living individuals of the PREDIMED study – Rosa Vázquez-Fresno – Metabolomics

A High-Resolution LC-MS-Based Secondary Metabolite Fingerprint Database of Marine Bacteria – Liang Lu – Nature Scientific Reports

“Till now, 1,430 bacterial strains spanning 168 known species collected from different marine environments were cultured and profiled. “

Viruses and phages

Ribonucleotide reductases reveal novel viral diversity and predict biological and ecological features of unknown marine viruses – Eric G. Sakowski – PNAS USA

“We identify ribonucleotide reductase (RNR) genes as superior markers of viral diversity. RNR genes are distributed over a broad range of viruses”

More microbiology

Strength in Diversity – Daniel J. Wolter, Lucas R. Hoffman – Cell Host & Microbe

“In this issue of Cell Host & Microbe, Hammer et al. (2014) show that distinct, slow-growing bacteria have better in vitro and in vivo growth and virulence when cocultured than in isolation. “

The Journal of Infectious Diseases has a special Issue on Polio: The Final Phase of Polio Eradication and Endgame Strategies for the Post-Eradication Era – Journal of Infectious Diseases

Science, publishing, career

Correcting the scientific record: An introduction to retractions – Bonnie Swoger – Scientific American

“Although the system is far from perfect, the retraction process is one of the ways in which the scientific literature corrects itself over time.”

 

Bik’s Picks

When Racism Was a Science – ‘Haunted Files: The Eugenics Record Office’ Recreates a Dark Time in a Laboratory’s Past – Joshua A. Krisch – New York Times

“In its heyday, the office was the premier scientific enterprise at Cold Spring Harbor. There, bigoted scientists applied rudimentary genetics to singling out supposedly superior races and degrading minorities. “

Paul Ryan: Science doesn’t get climate change – Jane C. Timm – MSNBC

“A full 97% of researchers taking a stance on climate change say it’s man-made, as do 97-98% of the most frequently-published climate scientists. But according to Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan, they’re all wrong.”

Get fish fry with a side of science at ‘Science of the Supper Club’ this Friday – Lindsay Christians – The Capital Times

“Science is everywhere, even at a Friday night fish fry. That’s the message of a new event this Friday called “Science of Supper Clubs,” part of the four-day Wisconsin Science Festival held at various venues around the state.”

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General microbiology and science digest, October 7, 2014

Transmission of Staph aureus in the hospital, a new assembler tool, metabolomics of the human gut microbiome, and a polio virus spill in Belgium.

More Microbes

Absence of Patient-to-Patient Intrahospital Transmission of Staphylococcus aureus as Determined by Whole-Genome Sequencing – S. Wesley Long – mBio

“To identify patient-to-patient intrahospital transmission using high-resolution genetic analysis, we sequenced the genomes of a consecutive set of 398 S. aureus isolates from sterile-site infections. “

Bioinformatics

Improved Assemblies Using a Source-Agnostic Pipeline for MetaGenomic Assembly by Merging (MeGAMerge) of Contigs – Matthew Scholz, Chien-Chi Lo & Patrick S. G. Chain – Nature Scientific Reports

“MeGAMerge consistently outperforms individual assembly methods, producing larger contigs with an increased number of predicted genes, without replication of data. “

Inferring phylogenies of evolving sequences without multiple sequence alignment – Cheong Xin Chan – Nature Scientific Reports

“Here, using simulated sequence sets of various sizes in both nucleotides and amino acids, we systematically assess the accuracy of phylogenetic inference using an alignment-free approach, based on D2 statistics, under different evolutionary scenarios. “

Gut Check: Exploring Your Microbiome – Coursera / University of Colorado Boulder

“Join us on a guided tour of the human gut and its microscopic inhabitants.”

Metabolomics

Modelling the emergent dynamics and major metabolites of the human colonic microbiota – Helen Kettle – Environmental Microbiology

“To reduce the complexity of the system, we divide the bacterial community into 10 bacterial functional groups (BFGs) each distinguished by its substrate preferences, metabolic pathways and its preferred pH range. “

Microbes in the news

* Petri Dish: The third branch of life – David Woodland – Summit Daily

“In addition to being an interesting branch on the tree of life, archaebacteria have turned out to be an incredibly valuable source of new products for science and industry. “

Pharmaceutical Giant GlaxoSmithKline “Accidentally” Released 45 Liters of Concentrated Live Polio Virus in the Environment – Global Research

“As reported to ECDC by Belgian authorities, on 2 September 2014, following a human error, 45 litres of concentrated live polio virus solution were released into the environment by the pharmaceutical company, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), in Rixensart city, Belgium.”

Science, publishing and career

* Science is innate! (behind a paywall, even at Stanford) – Jack A Gilbert – Genome Biology

“….when I am asked, as I often am, about how my research findings have influenced my day-to-day activities, I like to take a step back and think about what it means to be a scientist.”

Why I have taken a leave of absence from Science: to protest the abrupt firing of 4 colleagues – Michael Balter – Letter to Science

“Thus it is particularly painful and sad for me to tell you that I will be taking a three-month leave of absence in protest of recent events at Science and within its publishing organization, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

Bik’s Picks

Killer whales learn to communicate like dolphins – Science Daily

“…killer whales can engage in cross-species vocal learning: when socialized with bottlenose dolphins, they shifted the sounds they made to more closely match their social partners.”

NASA selects astrobiologists to study life origins and extraterrestrial possibilities – Jim Algar – Tech Times

“NASA announced 5-year grants adding up to nearly $50 million for seven research groups across the U .S. to study life in the universe and its origins, distribution, evolution and future.”

The most passive aggressive acknowledgement ever – BioDataGanache – SciEasterEggs

“The authors in this paper put some serious time in on this sucker, and they wanted to make a statement about it.”

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Human microbiome digest, October 7, 2014

Treating toxic arsenic levels with yoghurt, colonization patterns in low birthweight infants, evil alliances in breastmilk, and smoking and oral microbiome.

Human microbiome general

Opinion: Conservation and stewardship of the human microbiome – Kieran C. O’Doherty – PNAS USA

“Just as humans have impacted many large animal species in the environment, drastic changes in human lifestyle over the past century may have altered the global pool of human-associated microbes; if so, these shifts may pose substantial threats to individual and public health.”

Friends with Social Benefits: Host-Microbe Interactions as a Driver of Brain Evolution and Development? – Roman M. Stilling – Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology

“Here in this hypothesis and theory article, we propose how host-microbe associations potentially influenced mammalian brain evolution and development. “

Pregnancy and birth

Intestinal Colonization Among Very Low Birth Weight Infants in First Week of Life (PDF) – Sourabh Dutta – Indian Pediatrics

“Very low birth weight infants admitted in neonatal intensive care units have abnormal intestinal colonization patterns”

Is a fetus developing in a sterile environment? – Trudy M. Wassenaar and Pinaki Panigrahi – Letters in Applied Microbiology

Probiotics and Necrotizing Enterocolitis – Josef Neu – Clinics in Perinatology (paywalled even at Stanford)

Potential involvement of Campylobacter curvus and Haemophilus parainfluenzae in preterm birth – George Louis Mendz – BMJ Case Reports

“A woman presented with prelabour premature preterm rupture of membranes and delivered extremely preterm at 26 weeks by caesarean section.”

Network analysis reveals a potentially ‘evil’ alliance of opportunistic pathogens inhibited by a cooperative network in human milk bacterial communities – Zhanshan Ma – arXiv

“..we reconstructed a milk bacterial community network with the data from Hunt et al (2011), which is the largest 16S-rRNA sequence data set of human milk microbiome available to date.”

Randomized Open-Label Pilot Study of the Influence of Probiotics and the Gut Microbiome on Toxic Metal Levels in Tanzanian Pregnant Women and School Children – Jordan E. Bisanz – mBio

“Consumption of probiotic yogurt had a protective effect against further increases in mercury (3.2 nmol/liter; P = 0.035) and arsenic (2.3 nmol/liter; P = 0.011) blood levels in the pregnant women, but this trend was not statistically significant in the children.”

Human oral microbiome

* Alcohol and tobacco consumption affects bacterial richness in oral cavity mucosa biofilms – Andrew Maltez Thomas – BMC Microbiology

“DNA was extracted from swabs and the V1 region of the 16S rRNA gene was PCR amplified and sequenced using the Ion Torrent PGM platform, generating 3.7 million high quality reads. “

* Subgingival microbiome in smokers and non-smokers in Korean chronic periodontitis patients – Ji-Hoi Moon – Molecular Oral Microbiology

“Here, we investigated the composition of subgingival bacterial communities from the pooled plaque samples of smokers and non-smokers, 134 samples each group, in Korean moderate chronic periodontitis patients using 16S rRNA gene-based pyrosequencing.”

Human respiratory microbiome

Sinus culture poorly predicts resident microbiota – Leah J. Hauser – International Forum of Allergy & Rhinology

“The association between 16S relative abundance and detection by culture was determined using logistic regression.”

Localization of Burkholderia cepacia Complex Bacteria in Cystic Fibrosis Lungs and Interactions with Pseudomonas aeruginosa in Hypoxic Mucus – Ute Schwab – Infection and Immunity

“We performed immunohistochemistry for Bcc and P. aeruginosa bacteria on 21 coinfected or singly infected CF lungs obtained at transplantation or autopsy. “

Human gut microbiome

* Intestinal permeability, gut-bacterial dysbiosis, and behavioral markers of alcohol-dependence severity – Sophie Leclercq – PNAS USA

“In this study, we showed that alcohol-dependent subjects with altered intestinal permeability had also altered gut-microbiota composition and activity and remained with high scores of depression, anxiety, and alcohol craving after a short-term detoxification program.”

Structural modulation of gut microbiota during alleviation of type 2 diabetes with a Chinese herbal formula – Jia Xu – ISME Journal

“Pyrosequencing of the V3 regions of 16S rRNA genes revealed a dose-dependent deviation of gut microbiota in response to GQD treatment.”

Modelling the emergent dynamics and major metabolites of the human colonic microbiota – Helen Kettle – Environmental Microbiology

“To reduce the complexity of the system, we divide the bacterial community into 10 bacterial functional groups (BFGs) each distinguished by its substrate preferences, metabolic pathways and its preferred pH range. “

Animal models of microbiome research

Transcriptome analysis of Escherichia coli O157:H7 grown in vitro in the sterile-filtrated cecal content of human gut microbiota associated rats reveals an adaptive expression of metabolic and virulence genes – Guillaume Le Bihan – Microbes and Infection

“A transcriptomic analysis was performed on the EHEC strain EDL933 incubated in vitro in the sterile-filtrated cecal content of human microbiota-associated rats (HMC) compared with EDL933 incubated in the sterile-filtrated cecal content of germ-free rat (GFC).”

Early Innate Immunity to Bacterial Infection in the Lung Is Regulated Systemically by the Commensal Microbiota via Nod-Like Receptor Ligands – Thomas B. Clarke – Infection and Immunity

“Microbiota depletion caused significant defects in the early innate response to lung infection by the major human pathogen Klebsiella pneumoniae.”

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General microbiome and science, July 29

Bioinformatics tools, metabolomics, antibiotic resistance, biomeme hypothesis and the Kardashian index. Mine is still very low, so I’m good.

Bioinformatics

STAMP: Statistical analysis of taxonomic and functional profiles – Donovan H. Parks – Bioinformatics

“STAMP is a graphical software package that provides statistical hypothesis tests and exploratory plots for analyzing taxonomic and functional profiles. It supports tests for comparing pairs of samples or samples organized into two or more treatment groups. “

Metabolomics

Comparative metabolomics in primates reveals the effects of diet and gene regulatory variation on metabolic divergence – Ran Blekhman – Scientific Reports

“we performed a comparative study using a combination of gene expression and metabolomic profiling in livers from humans, chimpanzees, and rhesus macaques. We show that dietary differences between species have a strong effect on metabolic concentrations”

Antibiotics and resistance

Emergence of quinolone resistance in the microbiota of hospitalized patients treated or not with a fluoroquinolone – Victoire de Lastours – Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy

“FQs received during hospitalization account for high rates of emergence of resistance to FQs in clinically relevant bacteria from human microbiota, reflecting the important ecological impact of FQs. “

The expression of antibiotic resistance genes in antibiotic-producing bacteria
Stefanie Mak – Molecular Microbiology

“The expression of these genes needs to occur in a timely manner: either in advance of or concomitantly with biosynthesis. “

Tetracycline modifies competitive interactions in experimental microcosms containing bacteria isolated from freshwater – Alex R. Hall – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“These results suggest that antibiotics such as tetracycline may have important consequences for interactions among bacterial species, but in our experiments this was because species varied in their capacities for growth in the presence of tetracycline, rather than reduced competition at increasing tetracycline concentrations.”

Microbiology general

Please note that this one is just a hypothesis paper – there is no actual data to support this prediction. It’s very speculative, but discussed a lot on forums and Twitter.
Midichlorians – the biomeme hypothesis: is there a microbial component to religious rituals? – Alexander Y Panchin – Biology Direct

“We predict that next-generation microbiome sequencing of samples obtained from gut or brain tissues of control subjects and subjects with a history of voluntary active participation in certain religious rituals that promote microbial transmission will lead to the discovery of microbes, whose presence has a consistent and positive association with religious behavior. “

Science and publishing

Spotlight falls on top 1% in science – Chris Woolston – Nature

“News that a rarified group of scientists has claimed the lion’s share of publications has set off a social-media discussion about the fairness of the system”

Belongs to:

Estimates of the Continuously Publishing Core in the Scientific Workforce – John P. A. Ioannidis, Kevin W. Boyack, Richard Klavans – PLOS ONE

“However, only 150,608 (<1%) of them have published something in each and every year in this 16-year period (uninterrupted, continuous presence [UCP] in the literature).”

Academia’s seamier side: Lying, cheating and fraud – Fred Barbash – Washington Post

“The seamier side of academia, lying, cheating and occasionally stealing, this is the world revealed by a blog which, by all rights, should be dry and boring, like its name, “Retraction Watch.””

The Kardashian index: a measure of discrepant social media profile for scientists – Neil Hall – Genome Biology – Hat tip: Liz Costello

“if your K-index gets above 5, then it’s time to get off Twitter and write those papers”

 Dr. Bik’s Picks

The influence of emotional facial expressions on gaze-following in grouped and solitary pedestrians – Andrew C. Gallup – Nature Scientific Reports

“We found that pedestrians walking alone were not sensitive to this manipulation, while individuals traveling together in groups did reliably alter their response in relation to emotional cues. “

Timing of circadian genes in mammalian tissues – Anja Korenčič – Nature Scientific Reports

“To study the phase variability of CCGs in mammalian peripheral tissues, we develop a core clock model for mouse liver and adrenal gland based on expression profiles and known cis-regulatory sites.”

Footprint of Deepwater Horizon blowout impact to deep-water coral communities –
Charles R. Fisher – PNAS

“Here we show this was not an isolated incident; at least two other coral communities were also impacted by the spill. “

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Human microbiome, July 29

Papillomaviruses in human skin, gastric mucosa in cancer patients, breast milk metabolome, microbiome of a human family, and more.

Skin microbiome

Deep sequencing extends the diversity of human papillomaviruses in human skin
Davit Bzhalava – Nature Scientific Reports

“This deeper sequencing without prior PCR of a pool of 142 whole genome amplified skin lesions identified 23 known HPV types, 3 novel putative HPV types and 4 non-HPV viruses.”

Gastric microbiome

Differences in Gastric Mucosal Microbiota Profiling in Patients with Chronic Gastritis, Intestinal Metaplasia, and Gastric Cancer Using Pyrosequencing Methods – Chang Soo Eun – Helicobacter

“Gastric mucosal biopsy samples were collected from 31 patients during endoscopy. After the extraction of genomic DNA, variable region V5 of the 16S rRNA gene was amplified. PCR products were sequenced using 454 high-throughput sequencer. “

Pregnancy and Birth

Breast milk metabolome characterization in a single phase extraction, multiplatform analytical approach – Alma Villaseñor – Analytical Chemistry

“We conducted this single-phase extraction procedure on a representative pool of BM, and characterized the metabolic composition using LC-QTOF-MS and GC-Q-MS for polar and lipidic metabolites. “

Effects of Bifidobacterial Supplementation to Pregnant Women and Infants in the
Prevention of Allergy Development in Infants and on Fecal Microbiota [PDF]- Tadao Enomoto – Allergology International

“Effects of Bifidobacterial Supplementation to Pregnant Women and Infants in the Prevention of Allergy Development in Infants and on Fecal Microbiota”

Gut microbiome
The dynamics of a family’s gut microbiota reveal variations on a theme – Patrick D Schloss – Microbiome

“Here we study a chronosequence of the gut microbiota found in eight individuals from a family consisting of two parents and six children ranging in age from two months to ten years old.”

Identifying Keystone Species in the Human Gut Microbiome from Metagenomic Timeseries Using Sparse Linear Regression – Charles K. Fisher – PLOS ONE

“Here we introduce an approach, Learning Interactions from MIcrobial Time Series (LIMITS), that overcomes these obstacles. LIMITS uses sparse linear regression with boostrap aggregation to infer a discrete-time Lotka-Volterra model for microbial dynamics. “

Antivirulence Activity of the Human Gut Metabolome – L. Caetano M. Antunes – mBio

“We found that a secreted molecule produced by clostridia acts as a strong repressor of Salmonella virulence, obliterating expression of the Salmonella pathogenicity island 1 as well as host cell invasion.”

 Metagenomic Identification of a Novel Salt Tolerance Gene from the Human Gut Microbiome Which Encodes a Membrane Protein with Homology to a brp/blh-Family β-Carotene 15,15′-Monooxygenase – Eamonn P. Culligan – PLOS ONE

“Herein, we report the identification and characterisation of a novel stress tolerance gene from the human gut metagenome. The locus, assigned brpA, encodes a membrane protein with homology to a brp/blh-family β-carotene monooxygenase. “

Review: Archaea and the human gut: New beginning of an old story [DOC]- Gaci N – World Journal of Gastroenterology

“Here we provide an updated census of the archaeal diversity associated to human GIT and their possible role in the gut physiology and health.”

 

Animal models of human microbiome and disease

Maternal high protein or prebiotic fiber diets affect maternal milk composition and gut microbiota in rat dams and their offspring – Megan C. Hallam – Obesity

“Fecal microbiota was analyzed in dams at parturition and 2 weeks post-partum and in offspring at 5 and 22 weeks along with cecal digesta at termination.”

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Microbiome digest, July 24

Introducing the crAssphage, an 84 bp BLAST from the past, archaea in the Savannah, metabolomics of racehorse microbiome, and X-raying headphones.

Human oral microbiome

Proceedings RoyalMolecular analysis of ancient caries – Marc Simón – Proceedings of the Royal Society, Biological Sciences

“An 84 base pair sequence of the Streptococcus mutans virulence factor, known as dextranase, has been obtained from 10 individuals from the Bronze Age to the Modern Era in Europe and from before and after the colonization in America. “

Human gut microbiome

Nature CommunicationsA highly abundant bacteriophage discovered in the unknown sequences of human faecal metagenomes – Bas E. Dutilh – Nature Communications

“Here we describe the discovery of a previously unidentified bacteriophage present in the majority of published human faecal metagenomes, which we refer to as crAssphage.”

Gut family SchlossThe dynamics of a family’s gut microbiota reveal variations on a theme – Patrick D Schloss – Microbiome

“Using 16S rRNA gene and metagenomic shotgun sequence data, it was possible to distinguish the family from a cohort of normal individuals living in the same geographic region and to differentiate each family member”

Pregnancy and Birth

Screen Shot 2014-07-24 at 05.53PM, Jul 24An unnecessary cut? – Sky Dylan-Robbins – The New Yorker

“The most common operating-room procedure in the United States is the Cesarean section. “

Animal microbiome

Equine Vet JournalCharacterisation of the faecal metabolome and microbiome of Thoroughbred racehorses – C. J. Proudman – Equine Veterinary Journal

“Faecal metabolome was characterised using thermal desorption-gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (TD-GC-MS), with spectral analysis performed using AMDIS and compared against the NIST database. Taxonomic description of the faecal microbiota was achieved using error-corrected 454 pyrosequencing data from 16S rRNA gene amplicons”

Journal of MicrobiologyPyrosequencing-based analysis of fecal microbial communities in three purebred pig lines – Edward Alain B. Pajarillo – Journal of Microbiology

“Taxon-dependent and -independent analyses were performed to evaluate differences in the fecal bacterial communities and to identify bacterial genera that can be used to discriminate breeds, following high-throughput pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA genes. “

Environmental microbiome

Screen Shot 2014-07-24 at 05.55PM, Jul 24Seasonal Effects in a Lake Sediment Archaeal Community of the Brazilian Savanna – Thiago Rodrigues – Archaea

“Here we describe for the first time the diversity of archaeal communities from freshwater lake sediments of the Cerrado in the dry season and in the transition period between the dry and rainy seasons, when the first rains occur. Gene libraries were constructed, using Archaea-specific primers for the 16S rRNA and amoA genes.”

Screen Shot 2014-07-24 at 05.56PM, Jul 24Spatial patterns and links between microbial community composition and function in cyanobacterial mats – Mohammad A. Al-Najjar – Frontiers in Microbiology

“Similar clustering was found when the community composition of the mats’ cyanobacterial layers were compared by automated ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis, indicating a significant link between the microbial community composition and function. “

MicrobeNetNew Joint Initiative from the Knight and Sogin Labs as a Follow-up to the MoBEDAC Initiative – Embriette Hyde

“By the end of the funded period, standard 16S rRNA and ITS (fungal) analysis pipelines will be developed and made available to the MoBe community, 16S rRNA and ITS databases will be markedly improved, QIIME and VAMPS will be tightly integrated into a new database engine called QiiTA to facilitate analysis by all MoBe researchers, and two major training workshops will be offered. “

Dr. Bik’s PicksDNA

DNA mostly ‘junk?’ Only 8.2 percent of human DNA is ‘functional’, study finds – Science Daily

“This figure is very different from one given in 2012, when some scientists involved in the ENCODE (Encyclopedia of DNA Elements) project stated that 80% of our genome has some biochemical function.”

Screen Shot 2014-07-24 at 05.58PM, Jul 24Sex differences in medicine – BeWell – Stanford University

“A man can be diagnosed with the same disease as a woman, and yet the course the disease takes in each could prove very different. And a treatment which works for one gender may prove ineffective for the other. “

corksIs Climate Change Ruining Wine Corks? – Kelly Dickerson – LiveScience

“Many people may only worry about corks when it’s time to pop the Champagne, but some experts are worried about wine cork quality, which has been mysteriously in decline for almost 20 years.“

Headphone x rayDoc X-Rays His Broken Headphones to Fix Them – Bahar Gholipour – LiveScience

“”Closed fracture of a speaker wire within its rubber/plastic sleeve is a rare headphone injury, usually due to a traction trauma,” Skalski wrote in his report of the case.”

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