Microbiome digest, November 3, 2014

Human oral and vaginal microbiomes, rumen microbiome of impalas, sample handling and sponges, and two remarkable pieces in the New York Times.

Human oral microbiome

The association between the upper digestive tract microbiota by HOMIM and oral health in a population-based study in Linxian, China – Guoqin Yu – BMC Public Health

“Human Oral Microbe Identification Microarrays were used to test for the presence of 272 human oral bacterial species (97 genera) in upper digestive tract (UDT) samples collected from 659 participants. “

Pregnancy and birth microbiome

Poster: Comparison of the Vaginal Microbiomes of Pregnant Women of Four Ethnicities
and Identification of Taxa Associated with Urogenital Disease – Mendz GL – ECCMID Poster

“Principal component analysis suggested differences in the bacterial populations of healthy women and those with genital infections, with clustering of the latter along the Protobacteria axis “

Animal microbiome

Examination of the Rumen Bacteria and Methanogenic Archaea of Wild Impalas (Aepyceros melampus melampus) from Pongola, South Africa – Laura M. Cersosimo – Microbial Ecology

“In the present study, next-generation sequencing and real-time polymerase chain reaction were used to investigate the diversity and density of the bacteria and methanogenic archaea residing in the rumen of five adult male impalas”

Effects of sample handling and cultivation bias on the specificity of bacterial communities in keratose marine sponges – Cristiane C. Hardoim – Frontiers in Microbiology

Bacterial community profiling of the sympatric keratose species Sarcotragus spinosulus and Ircinia variabilis (Dictyoceratida, Irciniidae) was performed by polymerase chain reaction-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and 454-pyrosequecing of 16S rRNA gene fragments. “

Plant microbiome

Soil type-dependent effects of a potential biocontrol inoculant on indigenous bacterial communities in the rhizosphere of field-grown lettuce – Susanne Schreiter – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“16S rRNA gene fragments amplified from total community DNA were analyzed by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and pyrosequencing. “

Are heterotrophic and silica-rich eukaryotic microbes an important part of the lichen symbiosis? – David M Wilkinson – Mycology: An International Journal on Fungal Biology

“In this necessarily speculative paper we highlight areas for future research and how newer technologies may be useful for understanding the full suite of organisms involved in the lichen symbiosis.”

Soil microbiome

Selection on soil microbiomes reveals reproducible impacts on plant function – Kevin Panke-Buisse – ISME Journal

“Analysis of the soil microbial community using 16 S rRNA gene sequencing showed distinct microbiota profiles assembling by flowering time treatment.”

Chemolithotrophy in the continental deep subsurface: Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF), USA – Magdalena R. Osburn – Frontiers in Microbiology

“Geochemical data, energetic modeling, and DNA sequencing were combined with principle component analysis to describe this deep (down to 8100 ft below surface), terrestrial environment.”

Bioinformatic tools

* Seeing the forest for the genes: Using metagenomics to infer the aggregated traits of microbial communities – Noah Fierer – Frontiers in Microbiology

“Microbial ecologists could benefit by borrowing the concept of community-aggregated traits (CATs) from plant ecologists to glean more insight from the ever-increasing amount of metagenomic data being generated.”

Metabolomics

Fructan supplementation of senior cats affects stool metabolite concentrations and fecal microbiota concentrations, but not nitrogen partitioning in excreta – K.A. Barry – Journal of Animal Science

“Fructan supplementation may benefit senior cats as it modulates stool odor-forming compounds and decreases some protein catabolites and pathogenic gut microbiota concentrations without affecting N retention.”

Proteomics

From the Banfield lab: Development of an enhanced metaproteomic approach for deepening the microbiome characterization in the human infant gut – Weili Xiong – Journal of Proteome Research

“….we have designed a novel metaproteomic strategy based on double filtering (DF) the raw samples, a method that fractionates microbial from human cells to enhance microbial protein identification and characterization in complex fecal samples from healthy premature infants. “

More microbiology

Complementarity between targeted real-time specific PCR and conventional broad-range 16S rDNA PCR in the syndrome-driven diagnosis of infectious diseases – A.-S. Morel – European Journal of Clinical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases

“Herein, we report our experience in the diagnosis of infectious diseases over two years, during which 32,948 clinical samples from 18,056 patients were received from France and abroad.”

Microbes in the news

There Is No ‘Healthy’ Microbiome – Ed Yong – New York Times

“The microbiome is complex, varied, ever changing and context-dependent — qualities that are the enemies of easy categorization.”

Study: Ice Man has traces of bacteria that undermined his health – BetaWired

“…they found evidence of the presence of Treponema denticola, an opportunistic pathogen implicated in the development of periodontal diseases. “

Science, publishing, and career

How Do Small Things Make a Big Difference? Activities to Teach about Human–Microbe Interactions – Chandana Jasti – The American Biology Teacher

“In these guided inquiry activities, students investigate human–microbe interactions as they work together to interpret and analyze authentic data from published articles and develop scientific models.”

2014 Life Sciences Salary Survey – Jyoti Madhusoodanan – The Scientist

“This year’s data reveal notable variation in compensation for life scientists working in different fields, sectors, and regions of the world.”

Academic Science Isn’t Sexist – Wendy M. Williams and Stephen J. Ceci – New York Times

Our analyses show that women can and do prosper in math-based fields of science, if they choose to enter these fields in the first place.”

and two rebuttals:
Academic science is sexist: We do have a problem here – Emily Willingham
The flawed and offensive logic of “Academic Science Isn’t Sexist” in the @nytimes – Jonathan Eisen – The Tree of Life

Bik’s Picks

Standing time and all-cause mortality in a large cohort of Australian adults – Hidde P. van der Ploeg – Preventive Medicine

“Increasing standing may hold promise for alleviating the health risks of prolonged sitting.”

A Face to Remember – Kerry Grens – The Scientist

“Once dominated by correlational studies, face-perception research is moving into the realm of experimentation—and gaining tremendous insight.”

* With a very cute picture: Rovers Disguised as Baby Penguins Can Quietly Infiltrate Penguin Colonies – Rachel Nuwer – Smithsonian

“Pursuing this hunch, they outfitted the rover with a big ball of fluff and a little penguin head and arms. ”

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Microbiome Digest, October 29, 2014

The genome of Mycoplasma Mnola, helminths in wild rats, fungi in strawberry roots, and the top 100 most cited papers of all time. Can you guess which one is #1?

Human genital microbiome

An Emerging Mycoplasma Associated with Trichomoniasis, Vaginal Infection and Disease – Jennifer M. Fettweis – PLOS ONE

“In this study, the mycoplasma was found almost exclusively in women infected with the sexually transmitted pathogen Trichomonas vaginalis, but rarely observed in women with no diagnosed disease.”

Human gut microbiome

Bacteriology and Changes in Antibiotic Susceptibility in Adults with Community-Acquired Perforated Appendicitis – Hong Gil Jeon – PLOS ONE

“We retrospectively reviewed records of adult patients diagnosed with perforated appendicitis at an 800-bed teaching hospital between January 2000 and December 2011. “

Animal microbiome

Changes in the intestinal bacterial community during the growth of white shrimp, Litopenaeus vannamei – Zhaobin Huang – Aquaculture Research

“In this study, we documented the changes in the intestinal bacterial community at four stages in Litopenaeus vannamei…, using 454 pyrosequencing techniques. “

Assessment of Helminth Biodiversity in Wild Rats Using 18S rDNA Based Metagenomics – Ryusei Tanaka – PLOS ONE

“In this study, we assessed parasite diversity in wild rats using 18S rDNA-based metagenomics. 18S rDNA PCR products were sequenced using an Illumina MiSeq sequencer and the analysis of the sequences using the QIIME software successfully classified them into several parasite groups.”

Soil microbiome

Linking soil microbial communities to vascular plant abundance along a climate gradient – Luca Bragazza – New Phytologist

“Microbial community structure and function were measured seasonally in four peatlands located along an altitude gradient representing a natural gradient of climate and associated vascular plant abundance.”

* Influence of Soil Type, Cultivar and Verticillium dahliae on the Structure of the Root and Rhizosphere Soil Fungal Microbiome of Strawberry – Srivathsa Nallanchakravarthula – PLOS ONE

“In this study we examined the effects of different soils and cultivars, and the presence of a soil-borne fungal pathogen, Verticillium dahliae, on the fungal microbiome of the rhizosphere soil and roots of strawberry plants, using high-throughput pyrosequencing.”

Metagenomics / Bioinformatics

Evaluation of a Hybrid Approach Using UBLAST and BLASTX for Metagenomic Sequences Annotation of Specific Functional Genes – Ying Yang – PLOS ONE

“A hybrid annotation pipeline proposed previously for taxonomic assignments was evaluated in this study for metagenomic sequences annotation of specific functional genes, such as antibiotic resistance genes, arsenic resistance genes and key genes in nitrogen metabolism. “

Metabolomics

Long-term phenotypic evolution of bacteria – Germán Plata – Nature

“Here we perform a comparative analysis of bacterial growth and gene deletion phenotypes using hundreds of genome-scale metabolic models. “

Phages and viruses

Conditional tolerance of temperate phages via transcription-dependent CRISPR-Cas targeting – Gregory W. Goldberg – Nature

“Here we show that the Staphylococcus epidermidis CRISPR-Cas system can prevent lytic infection but tolerate lysogenization by temperate phages. “

Science, publishing and career

The top 100 papers – Richard Van Noorden – Nature

“To mark the anniversary, Nature asked Thomson Reuters, which now owns the SCI, to list the 100 most highly cited papers of all time.”

Bibliometrics: Is your most cited work your best? – John P. A. Ioannidis – Nature

“John P. A. Ioannidis and colleagues asked the most highly cited biomedical scientists to score their top-ten papers in six ways.”

Recommendations for the Role of Publishers in Access to Data – Jennifer Lin, Carly Strasser – PLOS Biology

“As appeals for public access of research data continue to proliferate, many scholarly publishers—alongside funders, institutions, and libraries—are expanding their role to address this need. “

How to Make More Published Research True – John P. A. Ioannidis – PLOS ONE

“Currently, many published research findings are false or exaggerated, and an estimated 85% of research resources are wasted.”

Prominent Geomicrobiologist Dies – Tracy Vence – The Scientist

“Katrina Edwards, whose research focus was on discovering life beneath the ocean floor, has passed away at age 46.”

Bik’s Picks

The Art of Science: Popsicles Go Viral – The Finch and Pea

“Lick a virus? Probably not a good idea, unless it’s a Dangerous Popsicle, a sweet treat created by artist and designer Wei Li. “

Dozens of genes associated with autism in new research – Science Direct

“Two major genetic studies of autism, involving more than 50 laboratories worldwide, have newly implicated dozens of genes in the disorder. “

Antares Rocket Explosion Destroyed These Kids’ Science Projects – Rheana Murray – ABC News

“Students across the nation watched their science projects go up in flames as the rocket bound for the International Space Station exploded moments after takeoff.”

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Microbiome Digest, October 20, 2014

Oral core microbiome, symbionts in crabs, sponges, and Drosophila, metabolites in dolphin’s breath, and retraction of a paper favored by Dr. Oz.

Pregnancy and birth

NEC in Twin Pregnancies: Incidence and Outcomes – Sathyaprasad C Burjonrappa, Brian Shea, Diya Goorah – Journal of Neonatal Surgery

“There is a remarkable higher incidence of NEC amongst twins. Abnormal colonization of the gastrointestinal tract appears to be an immediate postpartum event.”

Human oral microbiome

Intraindividual variation in core microbiota in peri-implantitis and periodontitis – Noriko Maruyama – Scientific Reports

“To improve our knowledge of the different communities of complex oral microbiota, we compared the microbial features between peri-implantitis and periodontitis in 20 patients with both diseases. “

Antimicrobial Effect of Lemongrass Oil against Oral Malodor Microorganisms and the Pilot Study of Safety and Efficacy of Lemongrass Mouthrinse on Oral Malodor – Panitta Satthanakul – Journal of Applied Microbiology

“Antimicrobial activity of LG mouthrinse was examined against common odorigenic microorganisms using broth microdilution assay and the disc diffusion method. A randomized double-blind clinical study was performed in 20 healthy volunteers.”

Animal microbiome

Molecular evidence of digestion and absorption of epibiotic bacterial community by deep-sea crab Shinkaia crosnieri – Tomo-o Watsuji – ISME Journal

“A phylogenetic analysis showed that many of the bacterial 16S ribosomal RNA gene sequences obtained from the intestine were closely related to the sequences of the epibionts, thus they were probably derived from the epibionts.”

* In vivo function and comparative genomic analyses of the Drosophila gut microbiota identify candidate symbiosis factors – Peter D. Newell – Frontiers in Microbiology

“We compared microbiota isolates with con-specific or closely related bacterial species isolated from non-fly environments. “

* Two distinct microbial communities revealed in the sponge Cinachyrella – Marie L. Cuvelier – Frontiers in Microbiology

“Sponges of the genus Cinachyrella are common in Caribbean and Floridian reefs and their archaeal and bacterial microbiomes were explored here using 16S rDNA tag pyrosequencing.”

* Symbiotic archaea in marine sponges show stability and host specificity in community structure and ammonia oxidation functionality – Fan Zhang – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“PCR cloning and sequencing of archaeal 16S rRNA and amoA genes showed that the archaeal community composition and structure were different from that in seawater and varied among sponge species. “

Plant microbiome

Reduced dependence of rhizosphere microbiome on plant-derived carbon in 32-year long-term inorganic and organic fertilized soils – Chao Ai – Soil Biology and Biochemistry

“Wheat rhizosphere microbiome was studied by stable isotope probing and pyrosequencing.”

Environmental microbiome

Characterization of bacterial communities associated with seasonal water masses from Tongyoung in South Sea of Korea – Sung-Suk Suh – Ocean Science Journal

“In this study, we adopted a 16S rRNA gene tag-pyrosequencing technique to investigate the bacterial communities associated with two different water masses from Tongyoung in the South Sea of Korea. “

Bacterial community structure of a lab-scale anammox membrane bioreactor – Alejandro Gonzalez-Martinez – Biotechnology Progress

“In this study, next-generation sequencing techniques have been used for the investigation of the bacterial communities of this MBR Anammox for the first time ever. “

Metagenomics & Bioinformatics

GenomePeek: What exactly is that sequencing data? – Katelyn McNair – MicroBEnet

“I wrote the initial version of GenomePeek, and tested it with various data sets using this student’s data. I quickly found that some genes work better than others, and so currently the four genes analyzed are: 16S, recA, rpoB, and groEL.”

Metabolomics

Metabolite Content Profiling of Bottlenose Dolphin Exhaled Breath – Alexander A. Aksenov – Analytical Chemistry

“We have developed a method to reproducibly sample breath from small cetaceans, specifically Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). “

Proteomics

Symbiosis, Dysbiosis and Rebiosis – the value of metaproteomics in human microbiome monitoring – Lei Mao and Jacqueline Franke – Proteomics

“After a brief review of the history and state-of-the-art of metaproteomics in the field of environmental health research, focus of this perspective article will be put on the role of cross-species joint efforts in symbiosis, dysbiosis and rebiosis of the human gut during human development, pathogenesis and aging.”

More microbiology

Bridging the gap between viable but non-culturable and antibiotic persistent bacteria – Mesrop Ayrapetyan – Trends in Microbiology

“This discussion is intended to stimulate discourse about these seemingly different but very similar dormant states.”

* Phylogenomic Reconstruction Indicates Mitochondrial Ancestor Was an Energy Parasite
Zhang Wang, Martin Wu – PLOS ONE

“Using a phylogenomic approach and leveraging on the increased taxonomic sampling of alphaproteobacterial and eukaryotic genomes, we reconstructed the metabolisms of both proto-mitochondria and pre-mitochondria.”

Real-time video imaging as a new and rapid tool for antibiotic susceptibility testing by the disk diffusion method: a paradigm for evaluating resistance to imipenem and identifying extended-spectrum β-lactamases – Stéphanie Le Page – International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents

“..we present here for the first time video movies of the appearance of the diameter of inhibition by the disk diffusion in real-time. “

Microbes in the news

Can Microbes Help Feed the World? – Amy Mayer – BioScience

“To help meet the challenge for food, scientists are using new technologies to better understand the role that soil microbes might play in bolstering agricultural production. “

Dentists Want To See Studies On Pot-Cavity Link – CBS Local

“Patients are experiencing tooth decay, expensive dentist bills and the pain of dealing with it all. The biggest side effect is dry mouth.”

Bik’s Picks

Brain surgery, by robot, through the cheek – Science Daily

“Engineers have developed a surgical robot designed to perform brain surgery by entering through the cheek instead of the skull that can operate on a patient in an MRI scanner. Additionally, the engineers have designed the system so that much of it can be made using 3-D printing in order to keep the price low.”

* Hilarious cartoons on Imgur: Real Scientists vs. Movie Scientists 

* Authors retract green coffee bean diet paper touted by Dr. Oz – Ivan Oransky – Retraction Watch

“Two authors of a 2012 paper sponsored by a company that made grand claims about green coffee bean extract’s abilities to help people lose weight have retracted it. The study was cited by The Dr. Oz Show, and last month it cost the company a $3.5 million settlement with the Feds.”

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Non-human microbiome digest, October 14, 2014

Diatoms in aquatic animals, bacteria in agaves and soybeans, and bacteria in artificial soil.

Animal microbiome

Diatoms in cytologic specimens of aquatic animals – Part I, fecal samples – Nicole StacyDiatoms in cytologic specimens of aquatic animals – Part II, dermal, respiratory, and gastric samples – Nicole Stacy – Veterinary Clinical Pathology

“Diatoms are a common finding in cytologic samples of aquatic animals…and it is necessary to differentiate these microbiota from parasite ova or protozoa.”

Impacts of large-bodied crustaceans on the microbial loop – Krystyna Kalinowska – Hydrobiologia

“Three alien crustacean species (Daphnia pulex, Simocephalus vetulus and Macrocyclops albidus) were collected from the regional species pool and added to mesocosms that were filled with water from a eutrophic lake “

Bacterial Community Composition of Three Candidate Insect Vectors of Palm Phytoplasma (Texas Phoenix Palm Decline and Lethal Yellowing) –  Christopher M. Powell – Current Microbiology

“Individuals from each species were subjected to 16S bacterial community sequencing using the Roche 454 platform, providing new information regarding the previously unexplored bacterial communities present in putative vectors.”

Plant microbiome

Diazotrophic potential among bacterial communities associated with wild and cultivated agaves – Damaris Desgarennes – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“Here, we investigated the bacterial communities associated with two Agave species by 16S rRNA-DGGE fingerprinting and sequencing.”

Spatio temporal influence of isoflavonoids on bacterial diversity in the soybean rhizosphere – Laura J White – Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions

“We silenced the biosynthesis of isoflavonoids, a major component of soybean rhizodeposits, using RNA interference in hairy root composite plants, and examined changes in rhizosphere bacteriome diversity.”

Soil microbiome

Artificial soil studies reveal domain-specific preferences of microorganisms for the colonisation of different soil minerals and particles size fractions – Michael Hemkemeyer – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“this study demonstrates that the mineral composition and the particle size fractions have specific and different selective effects on the three domains”

Improving soil bacterial taxa–area relationships assessment using DNA meta-barcoding – S Terrat – Heredity

“Our objectives in this study were to compare DNA fingerprinting and meta-barcoding approaches for evaluating soil bacterial TAR and the determinism of soil bacterial community assembly on a broad scale. “

The role of stochasticity differs in the assembly of soil- and root-associated fungal communities – Sarah Beck – Soil Biology and Biochemistry

“The importance of spatial and environmental factors in shaping fungal beta diversity was determined over a 500 km transect.”

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Animal microbiome digest, September 16, 2014

Microbiomes of baby elephants, baby macaques, cows, mice, honey bees, oysters, Panama forest trees, yoghurt, air, beer, and clothes. We also learn that oregano has no effect on piglet microbiome. Just in case you wondered.

Mammal microbiome

A Comparative Metagenome Survey of the Fecal Microbiota of a Breast- and a Plant-Fed Asian Elephant Reveals an Unexpectedly High Diversity of Glycoside Hydrolase Family Enzymes – Nele Ilmberger – PLOS ONE

“A phylogenetic and metagenomic study of elephant feces samples (derived from a three-weeks-old and a six-years-old Asian elephant) was conducted in order to describe the microbiota inhabiting this large land-living animal.”

Breast-fed and bottle-fed infant rhesus macaques develop distinct gut microbiotas and immune systems – Amir Ardeshir – Science Translational Medicine

“We show that breast-fed and bottle-fed infant rhesus macaques develop markedly different immune systems, which remain different 6 months after weaning when the animals begin receiving identical diets.”

Characterization of the rumen lipidome and microbiome of steers fed a diet supplemented with flax and echium oil – Sharon Ann Huws – Microbial Biotechnology

“Microbiome pyrosequences showed that 50% of the bacterial genera were core to all diets (found at least once under each dietary intervention)”

Metagenome of Mehsani Buffalo Rumen Microbiota: An Assessment of Variation in Feed-Dependent Phylogenetic and Functional Classification – Parmar N.R. – Journal of Molecular Microbiology and Biotechnology

“Diet composed of varying proportion of green and dry roughages along with grains was given to 8 Mehsani buffaloes, and rumen metagenome was sketched using shotgun semiconductor sequencing.”

Gastrointestinal microbiota of wild and inbred individuals of two house mouse subspecies assessed using high throughput parallel pyrosequencing – Jakub Kreisinger – Molecular Ecology

“Using 454 pyrosequencing, we performed 16S rDNA GTM barcoding for 30 wild house mice (Mus musculus) and wild-derived inbred strain mice belonging to two subspecies (M.m.musculus and M.m. domesticus).”

The Use of Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism and Fluorescence in Situ Hybridization to Investigate Microbiota of Piglets after Feeding Oregano – Katrin Stelter – Food and Nutrition Sciences

“The results showed no significant changes in microbiota in response to oregano. “

Insect microbiome

Buzz off, that’s my bee! – Gemma Langridge – Nature Reviews Microbiology

“These newly sequenced bee gut symbionts have revealed multiple genes that are candidates for determining host specificity. “

Hidden Diversity in Honey Bee Gut Symbionts Detected by Single-Cell Genomics – Philipp Engel – PLOS Genetics

“In both species, the divergence of 16S rRNA loci appears to have been curtailed by frequent recombination within populations, while other genomic regions have continuously diverged. “

Bacterial Communities in the Gut and Reproductive Organs of Bactrocera minax (Diptera: Tephritidae) Based on 454 Pyrosequencing – Ailin Wang – PLOS ONE

“We used a 454 pyrosequencing technology to study in depth the microbial communities associated with gut and reproductive organs of Bactrocera minax.”

Invertebrate microbiome

Hemolymph microbiome of Pacific oysters in response to temperature, temperature stress and infection – Ana Lokmer and Karl Mathias Wegner – ISME Journal

“We monitored oyster survival and repeatedly collected hemolymph of dead and alive animals to determine the microbiome composition by 16s rRNA gene amplicon pyrosequencing. “

Plant microbiome

Relationships between phyllosphere bacterial communities and plant functional traits in a neotropical forest – Steven W. Kembel – PNAS

“In this study we sequenced bacterial communities present on tree leaves in a neotropical forest in Panama, to quantify the poorly understood relationships between bacterial biodiversity on leaves (the phyllosphere) vs. host tree attributes. “

Litter decomposition and soil microbial community composition in three Korean pine (Pinus koraiensis) forests along an altitudinal gradient – Yong Zhou – Plant and Soil

“Single- and mixed-species litter decomposition rates were determined by the litterbag method and soil microbial community composition was characterized by PLFAs.”

Soil microbiome

Pyrosequencing assessment of rhizosphere fungal communities from a soybean field – Akifumi Sugiyama – Canadian Journal of Microbiology

“This study utilized 454 pyrosequencing to analyze rhizosphere fungal communities during soybean growth.”

Water microbiome

Seasonal and interannual variability of the marine bacterioplankton community throughout the water column over ten years – Jacob A Cram – ISME Journal

“Biodiversity appeared to be driven partially by exchange of microbes between depths and was highest when communities were changing slowly over time.”

Long-term effects of the antibacterial agent triclosan on marine periphyton communities – Martin Eriksson – PeerJ PrePrints

“Pollution-Induced Community Tolerance (PICT) was observed for algae and cyanobacteria at 100 nM TCS and higher.”

Review: Master recyclers: features and functions of bacteria associated with phytoplankton blooms – Alison Buchan – Nature Reviews Microbiology

“In this Review, we discuss the central role that these bacteria have in transforming phytoplankton-derived organic matter and thus in biogeochemical nutrient cycling.”

Built environment microbiome

Diversity and dynamics of the indoor air microbiome in an urban subway network – Marcus H. Y. Leung – Applied and Environmental Microbiology

“Targeting the 16S rDNA V4 region, extensive taxonomic diversity was found, with the most common bacterial genera in the subway environment among those seen associated on skin.”

Microbial Odor Profile of Polyester and cotton clothes after a fitness session – Chris Callewaert – Applied and Environmental Microbiology

“A dissimilar bacterial growth was found in cotton versus synthetic clothing textiles. Micrococci were isolated in almost all synthetic shirts and were detected almost solely on synthetic shirts by means of DGGE fingerprinting. “

Food microbiology

Vegetable microbiomes: is there a connection among opportunistic infections, human health and our ‘gut feeling’? – Gabriele Berg – Microbial Biotechnology

“Based on these results, we discuss the question if vegetables can serve as a source of infection for immunocompromised individuals as well as possible solutions to avoid outbreaks. “

Assessment of the bacterial and fungal diversity in home-made yoghurts of Xinjiang of China by pyrosequencing – Haiyan Xu – Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture

“The bacterial and fungal community diversity of 22 home-made yoghurt samples from Zhaosu and Tekesi counties of Xinjiang in China were analyzed with pyrosequencing. “

Victory, life-sciences firm team up to detect bacteria that can spoil beer’s taste – Diane Mastrull – Philly.com

“The list is long of the perfect accompaniments to beer: hot dogs, pizza, peanuts, and pretzels, to name just a few. Most definitely not on that list: pediococcus and lactobacillus. Consider them beer buzzkills.”

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Non-human microbiome, August 19, 2014

A very diverse mix today: kangaroo, rumen, Daphnia, ticks, corals, rice, switchgrass, drinking water, acid mine drainage, rocks, soil microbiomes.

Mammal microbiome

Investigation of the microbial metabolism of carbon dioxide and hydrogen in the kangaroo foregut by stable isotope probing – Scott Godwin – ISME Journal

“Our results clearly demonstrate that the activity of bacterial reductive acetogens is a key factor in the reduced methane output of kangaroos”

Temporal dynamics of fibrolytic and methanogenic rumen microorganisms during in situ incubation of switchgrass determined by 16S rRNA gene profiling – Hailan Piao – Frontiers in Microbiology

“Here we investigated the temporal succession of microbial taxa and its effect on fiber composition during rumen incubation using 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing.”

Arthropod microbiome

Bacterial epibionts of Daphnia: a potential route for the transfer of dissolved organic carbon in freshwater food webs – Ester M Eckert and Jakob Pernthaler – ISME Journal

“We analysed the activity and identity of bacterial epibionts in cultures of Daphnia galeata and of natural daphnid populations.”

Evaluation of microbial communities and symbionts in Ixodes ricinus and ungulate hosts (Cervus elaphus and Ovis aries) from shared habitats on the west coast of Norway
Erik G. Granquist – Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases

“Five different species; M. mitochondrii, W. pipientis, Borrelia spp., Rickettia spp. and A. phagocytophilum, were analyzed on a 7500 Fast Real-time PCR system (Life Technologies, Carlsbad, CA), and carried out in separate 96-wells reaction plates. “

Coral microbiome

New insights into Oculina patagonica coral diseases and their associated Vibrio spp. communities – Esther Rubio-Portillo – ISME Journal

“….we have analysed the seasonal patterns of the culturable Vibrio spp. assemblages associated with healthy and diseased O. patagonica colonies. “

Bloom of the cyanobacterium Moorea bouillonii on the gorgonian coral Annella reticulata in Japan – Hideyuki Yamashiro – Nature Scientific Reports

“In addition to the cyanobacterium–shrimp interaction, the new trait of anchoring by the cyanobacterium into gorgonian coral may contribute to persistence of this bloom.”

Not just who, but how many: the importance of partner abundance in reef coral symbioses – Ross Cunning and Andrew C. Baker – Frontiers in Microbiology

“…we generate testable hypotheses regarding the importance of symbiont abundance by first discussing different metrics and their potential links to symbiosis performance and breakdown, and then describing how natural variability and dynamics of symbiont communities may help explain ecological patterns on coral reefs and predict responses to environmental change.”

Plant microbiome

Phylogeny and Functions of Bacterial Communities Associated with Field-Grown Rice Shoots – Takashi Okubo – Microbes and Environments

“Metagenomic analysis was applied to bacterial communities associated with the shoots of two field-grown rice cultivars, Nipponbare and Kasalath.”

Reviving of the endophytic bacterial community as a putative mechanism of plant resistance – Olga Podolich – Plant and Soil

“Based on the published results, we suggest that the endophyte-mediated stress tolerance or disease resistance can develop, if the plant hosts a sufficient diversity of ‘protective’ endophytes. “

The rhizosphere microbiota of plant invaders: an overview of recent advances in the microbiomics of invasive plants – Vanessa C. Coats, Mary E. Rumpho – Frontiers in Microbiology

“This review discusses recent advances in invasive plant biology that have resulted from microbiome analyses as well as the microbial factors that direct plant fitness and adaptability in natural systems.”

Kelp forest size alters microbial community structure and function on Vancouver Island, Canada – Jessica Liz Clasen and Jonathan B. Shurin – Ecology

“We investigated the response of microbial communities to variation in kelp abundance between regions with and without sea otter populations along the west coast of Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada”

Soil, sediments, rocks

* Impact of fire on active layer and permafrost microbial communities and metagenomes in an upland Alaskan boreal forest – Neslihan Taş – ISME Journal

“We measured geochemistry, GHG fluxes, potential soil enzyme activities and microbial community structure via 16SrRNA gene and metagenome sequencing.”

Integrated Metagenomics and Metatranscriptomics Analyses of Root-Associated Soil from Transgenic Switchgrass – Archana Chauhan – Genome Announcements

“Here we report metagenomic and metatranscriptomic analyses of root-associated soil from COMT switchgrass compared with nontransgenic counterparts.”

Abiotic stress tolerance and competition-related traits underlie phylogenetic clustering in soil bacterial communities – Marta Goberna – Ecology Letters

“We examined the distribution of 15 traits and 3290 bacterial taxa in 28 plots. Communities showed a marked functional response to the environment. “

Elevated nitrate enriches microbial functional genes for potential bioremediation of complexly contaminated sediments – Meiying Xu – ISME Journal

“Here we analyzed sediment microbial communities from a field-scale in situ bioremediation site, a creek in Pearl River Delta containing a variety of contaminants “

Occurrence and expression of bacterial human virulence gene homologues in natural soil bacteria – Ditte A. Søborg – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“The presence and in vitro expression of homologues to 22 bacterial human virulence determinants amongst culturable soil bacteria was investigated.”

Endolithic bacterial communities in rock coatings from Kärkevagge, Swedish Lapland – Cassandra L. Marnocha – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“Using 454 Roche pyrosequencing of the 16S rDNA gene, nine rock coating samples from three different coating mineralogies were sequenced.”

Biodegradation Potential of Organically Enriched Sediments under Sulfate- and Iron-Reducing Conditions as Revealed by the 16S rRNA Deep Sequencing – Tomoyuki Hori – Journal of Water and Environment Technology

“The effects of supplementation with sulfate and lepidocrocite (a crystalline Fe[III] oxide) on the structure and activity of the slurry microorganisms were examined by the combined physicochemical analyses and 16S rRNA deep sequencing. “

Soil bacterial diversity in degraded and restored lands of Northeast Brazil – Ademir Sérgio Ferreira Araújo – Antonie van Leeuwenhoek

“In this study we compare the structure and diversity of bacterial communities in degraded and restored lands in Northeast Brazil and determine the soil biological and chemical properties influencing bacterial communities. “

Biogeochemical environments of streambed-sediment pore waters with and without arsenic enrichment in a sedimentary rock terrain, New Jersey Piedmont, USA
A.C. Mumford – Science of the Total Environment

“The 16S rRNA gene and the As(V) respiratory reductase gene, arrA, were amplified from DNA extracted from streambed pore water at both sites and analyzed, revealing that distinct bacterial communities that corresponded to the redox conditions were present at each site. “

Water, wastewater, sludge microbiome

* A comprehensive insight into bacterial virulence in drinking water using 454 pyrosequencing and Illumina high-throughput sequencing – Kailong Huang – Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety

“In order to comprehensively investigate bacterial virulence in drinking water, 454 pyrosequencing and Illumina high-throughput sequencing were used to detect potential pathogenic bacteria and virulence factors (VFs) in a full-scale drinking water treatment and distribution system. “

A high-throughput sequencing ecotoxicology study of freshwater bacterial communities and their responses to tebuconazole – Pascault Noémie – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“Pyrosequencing revealed that bacterial diversity was higher in the river than in the lakes and in previously-exposed sites than in pristine sites.”

Disturbance and temporal partitioning of the activated sludge metacommunity – David C Vuono – ISME Journal

“Bacterial small subunit (SSU) rRNA genes were surveyed from sludge samples resulting in a sequence library of >417 000 SSU rRNA genes. “

Review: Environmental bacteriophages: viruses of microbes in aquatic ecosystems – Télesphore Sime-Ngando – Frontiers in Microbiology

“The present chapter sought to review the literature on the diversity and functional roles of viruses of microbes in environmental microbiology,”

* Inter-species interconnections in acid mine drainage microbial communities
Luis R. Comolli and Jill F. Banfield – Frontiers in Microbiology

Here, we present cryogenic transmission electron microscope (cryo-TEM) 2D images and 3D tomographic datasets for archaeal species from natural acid mine drainage (AMD) microbial communities. “

A study on the microbial community structure in oil reservoirs developed by water flooding – Lin Junzhang – Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering

“This study was performed to identify the microbial community structures in 10 different types of water-flooded oil reservoirs on Sinopec Shengli Oil Field. “

Microbes of the built environment

* Microbial Existence in Controlled Habitats and Their Resistance to Space Conditions – Kasthuri Venkateswaran – Microbes and Environments

“In this review, we discussed the presence of microbes in space research-related closed habitats and the resistance of some microbial species to the extreme environmental conditions of space.”

Microbial Monitoring of Crewed Habitats in Space—Current Status and Future Perspectives – Nobuyasu Yamaguchi – Microbes and Environments

“In this review, the current status of microbial monitoring conducted in the International Space Station (ISS) as well as the results of recent microbial spaceflight experiments have been summarized and future perspectives are discussed.”

Food microbiology

Investigation of bacterial and fungal diversity in tarag using high-throughput sequencing
Zhihong Sun – Journal of Dairy Science

“This is the first study on the bacterial and fungal community diversity in 17 tarag samples (naturally fermented dairy products) through a metagenomic approach involving high-throughput pyrosequencing. “

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Microbiome digest, August 18, 2014

Mushroom microbiome, mice fed T7 phages, and uBiome got some money.

Plant microbiome

Comparative analysis of bacterial diversity and communities inhabiting the fairy ring of Tricholoma matsutake by barcoded pyrosequencing – M. Kim – Journal of Applied Microbiology

“The bacterial communities in soil samples collected from inside, beneath and outside the T. matsutake fairy ring were investigated using barcoded pyrosequencing. “

Rhizospheric fungal community structure of a Bt brinjal and a near isogenic variety – A.K. Singh – Journal of Applied Microbiology

“..this study concludes that genetic modification of brinjal crop has minor effect on the fungal community.”

Phages and viruses

Observation of inflammatory responses in mice orally fed with bacteriophage T7 – K. Park – Journal of Applied Microbiology

“A histopathological analysis of tissue samples from the stomach, small intestine and colon revealed no significant pathological change.”

Microbes in the news

GW High students to name bacterium – Maria Hernandez – Pacific Sunday News

“Students from George Washington High School got the opportunity to name a bacterium that was discovered during a historic underwater expedition to the Mariana Trench, which was led by filmmaker James Cameron in 2012.”

uBiome Raises $4.5M From Angel Investors, Andreessen Horowitz To Crowdsource Microbiome Research – Julian Chokkattu – Techcrunch

“uBiome also has the largest private dataset of human microbiome samples in the world, giving participants a quick way to compare what’s in their microbiome to a large group.”

Bik’s Picks

All Things Considered podcast (3 min): Often On The Move, Restless Elephants Are Tough To Count — And Keep Safe – Gregory Warner – NPR

The reason elephants are so hard to protect is the same that makes them so hard to count: They roam — exceptionally far.”

Mapping Cell Fate Conversion via CellNet, a Network Biology Tool – Kevin Mayer – GenEngNews

“The differentiation of engineered stem cells may be imagined as a subway journey, where the genetic equivalents of missing a transfer or getting off at the wrong stop can take your stem cells far off course.”

Camouflage sheet inspired by octopus – Jonathan Webb – BBC Science

“Based on the camouflage abilities of octopuses and cuttlefish, engineers in the US have built a flexible material that changes colour to match its surroundings.”

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