April 16, 2019

Good morning everyone! Today’s digest will deal a lot of disturbance in various ecosystems- starvation of the oral microbiota, forest fires, elevated CO2 levels and rising temperatures and more. Additionally, interesting pieces about science communication and education are recommended (bottom of the post).

Animal microbiome

Effects of diet on gut microbiota of soil collembolans– Qian Xiang- Science of the Total Environment

Diel population and functional synchrony of microbial communities on coral reefs– Winda Wegley-Kelly- Nature Communications

Human microbiome

Klebsiella and Providencia emerge as lone survivors following long-term starvation of oral microbiota– Jonathon L. Baker- PNAS

Horizontal gene transfer in human-associated microorganisms inferred by phylogenetic reconstruction and reconciliation– Hyeonsoo Jeong- Scientific Reports

Dysbiosis patterns during re-induction/salvage versus induction chemotherapy for acute leukemia– Armin Rashidi- Scientific Reports

The personalized temporal dynamics of microbiome in the airways of cystic fibrosis patients– Giovanni Baci- bioRxiv

Plant, root and soil microbiome

Maize synthesized benzoxazinoids affect the host associated microbiome- Enoch Narh Kodjordjie- Microbiome

Utilization of carbon sources in the rice rhizosphere and non-rhizosphere soils with different long-term fertilization management– Tang H- J of Basic Microbiology

Effect of forest fire prevention treatments on bacterial communities associated with productive Boletus edulis sites- Olaya Mediavilla- Microbial Biotechnology

Effects of elevated temperature and elevated CO2 on soil nitrification and ammonia-oxidizing microbial communities in field-grown crop– Linh T.T Nguyen- Science of the Total Environment

Phyllosphere epiphytic and endophytic fungal community and network structures differ in a tropical mangrove ecosystem– Hui Yao- Microbiome

Changes in fungal communities across a forest disturbance gradient– Lingling Shi- AEM

Water microbiome

Wetland sediments host diverse microbial taxa capable of cycling alchohols- Paula Dalcin Martins- AEM

Review- The microbiomes of deep-sea hydrothermal vents: distributed globally, shaped locally– Gregory J. Dick- N. Reviews Microbiology

Bioinformatics

DeeplyEssential: A Deep Neural Network for Predicting Essential Genes in Microbes- Md Abid Hassan- bioRxiv

Microbiome news and science communication

Biotech company launches animal models with custom microbiome profiles

Microbial biotechnology for water treatment- A collection of high-quality websites (from Microbial Biotechnology)

Thematic series on scholarly communications in the digital age

The urgent need for microbiology literacy in society

Microbiome digest, November 11, 2014

Human oral microbiome

Physiological Adaptations of Key Oral Bacteria – C. W. Ian Douglas – Advances in Microbial Physiology

Human gut microbiome

Development and Survival of Th17 Cells within the Intestines: The Influence of Microbiome- and Diet-Derived Signals – Joseph H. Chewning – The Journal of Immunology

Gut Inflammation and Immunity: What Is the Role of the Human Gut Virome? – Alfredo Focà – Mediators of Inflammation

Animal microbiome

Faecal Microbiota of Forage-Fed Horses in New Zealand and the Population Dynamics of Microbial Communities following Dietary Change – Karlette A. Fernandes – PLOS ONE

The Effect of Phytochemical Tannins-Containing Diet on Rumen Fermentation Characteristics and Microbial Diversity Dynamics in Goats Using 16S rDNA Amplicon Pyrosequencing – B. R. Min – Agriculture, Food & Analytical Bacteriology

Microbial diversity in forestomach and caecum contents of the greater long-tailed hamster Tscherskia triton (Rodentia: Cricetidae) – Akio Shinohara – Mammalian Biology – Zeitschrift für Säugetierkunde

The pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis disturbs the frog skin microbiome during a natural epidemic and experimental infection – Andrea J. Jani – PNAS USA

Gill bacteria enable a novel digestive strategy in a wood-feeding mollusk – Roberta M. O’Connor – PNAS USA

Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi communities in a coral cay system (Morrocoy, Venezuela) and their relationships with environmental variables – M.M. Alguacil – Science of the Total Environment

Soil microbiome

Short-term parasite-infection alters already the biomass, activity and functional diversity of soil microbial communities – Jun-Min Li – Scientific Reports

Impact of short-term storage temperature on determination of microbial community composition and abundance in aerated forest soil and anoxic pond sediment samples – Franziska B. Brandt – Systematic and Applied Microbiology

Seasonal influence of climate manipulation on microbial community structure and function in mountain soils – Jérémy Puissant – Soil Biology and Biochemistry

Effect of organic and conventional practices on carbon-substrate utilisation by the soil microbial community in a ‘Cripps Pink’/M7 apple orchard – Andre H Meyer – South African Journal of Plant and Soil

* The Soil Biota Composition along a Progressive Succession of Secondary Vegetation in a Karst Area – Jie Zhao – PLOS ONE

Effects of salinization and crude oil contamination on soil bacterial community structure in the Yellow River Delta region, China – Yong-chao Gao – Applied Soil Ecology

Water microbiome

Community dynamics of prokaryotic and eukaryotic microbes in an estuary reservoir – Zhen Sun – Scientific Reports

Microbial diversity and community structure across environmental gradients in Bransfield Strait, Western Antarctic Peninsula – Camila N. Signori – Frontiers in Microbiology

Metagenomics

Assessment of quality control approaches for metagenomic data analysis – Qian Zhou – Scientific Reports

PaperClip: rapid multi-part DNA assembly from existing libraries – Maryia Trubitsyna – Nucleic Acids Research

Microbial phylogeny

* Assessing the global phylum level diversity within the bacterial domain: A review – Noha H. Youssef – Journal of Advanced Research

Science, publishing, career

Crosspost: Using Google Scholar in Scholarly Workflows – Jonathan Eisen – microBEnet

Hilarious: Overly honest references: “Should we cite the crappy Gabor paper here?” – RetractionWatch – (Note: paper has been removed – see a screenshot here)

Microbes in the news

* Bacteria Hysteria? Deadly bacteria normally found in toilets was discovered in the microwave of these students – The Journal.ie

Bik’s Picks

Comparative analysis of the domestic cat genome reveals genetic signatures underlying feline biology and domestication – Michael J. Montague – PNAS USA

UCSF develops site to make sense out of sugar science – Erin Allday – SFGate

Found: The Ideal Fatness for Elephant Seals – Elizabeth Preston – Discover

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Microbiome Digest, November 4, 2014

Tomorrow, Wednesday November 5, at 1:00pm USA-EST : Upcoming AMA (Ask Me Anything) in reddit/r/science: “Microbiota of the human gut” with my co-worker Les Dethlefsen. Ask him anything! You can submit questions, vote for the best questions, and the top questions will be answered by Les.

Human gut microbiome

* Rapid changes in the gut microbiome during human evolution – Andrew H. Moeller – PNAS USA

“To establish how the gut microbiome has changed since the diversification of human and ape species, we characterized the microbial assemblages residing within hundreds of wild chimpanzees, bonobos, and gorillas.”

and: Human Gut Bacteria Much Different Than Apes – Science 2.0

* Blastocystis Is Associated with Decrease of Fecal Microbiota Protective Bacteria: Comparative Analysis between Patients with Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Control Subjects – Céline Nourrisson – PLOS ONE

“Here, we first compared the prevalence of Blastocystis among 56 IBS patients (40 IBS with constipation (IBS-C), 9 IBS with diarrhea (IBS-D), 4 mixed IBS (IBS-M) and 3 unsubtyped IBS (IBS-U) according to the Rome III criteria) and 56 control (i.e. without any diagnosed chronic or acute gastrointestinal disorder) subjects. “

Animal models of microbiome research

* Bone Marrow Dendritic Cells from Mice with an Altered Microbiota Provide Interleukin 17A-Dependent Protection against Entamoeba histolytica Colitis – Stacey L. Burgess – mBio

“In studies utilizing a murine model, we demonstrated that colonization of the gut with the commensal Clostridia-related bacteria known as segmented filamentous bacteria (SFB) is protective during E. histolytica infection.”

Animal microbiome

Effect of Copper Treatment on the Composition and Function of the Bacterial Community in the Sponge Haliclona cymaeformis – Ren-Mao Tian – mBio

“16S rRNA gene sequencing results showed that the sponge Haliclona cymaeformis harbored symbiotic sulfur-oxidizing Ectothiorhodospiraceae and photosynthetic Cyanobacteria as dominant species. “

Bioinformatics tools

Massive fungal biodiversity data re-annotation with multi-level clustering – Duong Vu – Scientific Reports

“An implementation of the algorithm allowed clustering of all 344,239 ITS (Internal Transcribed Spacer) fungal sequences from GenBank”

Viruses and phages

Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectrometry applied to virus identification – Adriana Calderaro – Scientific Reports

“The results revealed MALDI-TOF MS to be an effective and inexpensive tool for the identification of the three poliovirus serotypes. “

More microbiology

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

“About 25% of the bacterial isolates contained virulence gene homologues representing toxin (hblA, cytK2), adhesin (fimH), regulator (phoQ) and resistance (yfbI) determinants in pathogenic bacteria.”

Science, publishing, and career

* Don’t Worry Your Pretty Little Heads – Rebecca Schuman – Slate

“I don’t understand how they wrote the paper or the op-ed they did while looking at the same results I see in their paper. … Where I come from,” she concludes, “we call that institutional bias.”

Bik’s Picks

Birds found using human musical scales for the first time – Virginia Morell – Science Blog

“The flutelike songs of the male hermit thrush (Catharus guttatus) are some of the most beautiful in the animal kingdom.”

Vaccine-resistant polio strain discovered – Science Daily

“The DNA sequence shows two mutations, unknown until now, of the proteins that form the “shell” (capsid) of the virus.”

The appliance of science: home experiments with your kids – Louise Holden – Irish Times

“Next week is Science Week, and one of the messages that McCarthy is hoping to put out there is that science is for everybody, not just those hoping to work in the sector. Helping your child to become science-literate is a great gift.”

The top 20 catchiest songs of all time, according to science – Michelle Starr – CNET

“A year-long survey by the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester has revealed the top 10 most persistent earworms — with the Spice Girls topping the list.”

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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 30, 2014

Bacteriocins in human metagenomic libraries, freezing/thawing effects on community composition, microbiome of preterm neonates, and bacteria in soil.
Multiple-site human microbiome

Diversity and dynamics of bacteriocins from human microbiome – Jinshui Zheng – Environmental Microbiology

“We employed bioinformatic analyses to identify putative bacteriocin sequences in metagenomic sequences obtained from different human body sites. “

Human respiratory microbiome

* Implications of multiple freeze-thawing on respiratory samples for culture-independent analyses – Leah Cuthbertson – Journal of Cystic Fibrosis

“Following each cycle, an aliquot was removed and treated with propidium monoazide (PMA) prior to DNA extraction and 16S rRNA gene pyrosequencing.”

Human gut microbiome

Immune Homeostasis, Dysbiosis and Therapeutic Modulation of the Gut Microbiota – Christine T. Peterson – Clinical & Experimental Immunology

“This review discusses host-microbiota homeostasis, consequences of its perturbation, and the associated challenges in therapeutic developments that lie ahead.”

Microbiome of pregnancy and birth

* Intestinal Microbiota Development in Preterm Neonates and Effect of Perinatal Antibiotics – Silvia Arboleya – The Journal of Pediatrics

“We used 16S ribosomal RNA gene sequence-based microbiota analysis and quantitative polymerase chain reaction to evaluate the establishment of the intestinal microbiota. “

Animal microbiome

Hidden Population Structure and Cross-species Transmission of Whipworms (Trichuris sp.) in Humans and Non-human Primates in Uganda – Ria R. Ghai – PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases

“We examined the phylogenetic structure of whipworms in a multi-species community of non-human primates and humans in Western Uganda, using both traditional microscopy and molecular methods.”

Soil microbiome

Metagenomic analysis reveals microbial functional redundancies and specificities in a soil under different tillage and crop-management regimes – Renata Carolini Souza – Applied Soil Ecology

“in this study we used a shotgun metagenomic approach to compare different soil…, and crop … managements in a 13-year-old field experiment in southern Brazil. “

Evaluating T-RFLP protocols to sensitively analyze the genetic diversity and community changes of soil alkane degrading bacteria – Julia Giebler – European Journal of Soil Biology

“This study aimed at identifying a reliable, highly resolving fingerprinting method to monitor alkane degrading communities in soil.”

Contrasting land uses in Mediterranean agro-silvo-pastoral systems generated patchy diversity patterns of vascular plants and below-ground microorganisms – Simonetta Bagella – Comptes Rendus Biologies

“Species richness decreased with increasing land use intensity, the Shannon index showed the highest values in grasslands and hay crops.”

Food microbiology

Characterization and use of microbial communities in Doenjang to control the unpleasant odor of Ginkgo epicarp – Sunhyun Park – Food Science and Biotechnology

“Microbes in doenjang were probably responsible for the reduction in the butyric acid content. Microbial communities were analyzed during fermentation.”

Bioreactor microbiology

Thermophilic anaerobic digestion of thermal pretreated sludge: role of microbial community structure and correlation with process performances – M.C. Gagliano – Water Research

“16S rRNA gene clonal analysis and Fluorescence In Situ Hybridization (FISH) analyses allowed us to identify the majority of bacterial and archaeal populations. “

Bioinformatics

Fast dendrogram-based OTU clustering using sequence embedding – Thuy-Diem Nguyen – Proceedings of the 5th ACM Conference on Bioinformatics, Computational Biology, and Health Informatics

“In this paper, we introduce a new hierarchical clustering method called CRiSPy-Embed which aims to produce high-quality clustering results at a low computational cost. “

Focus: a new multilayer graph model for short read analysis and extraction of biologically relevant features – Julia Warnke – Proceedings of the 5th ACM Conference on Bioinformatics, Computational Biology, and Health Informatics

“We present Focus, a new multilayer graph model for short read analysis and extraction of biologically relevant features. “

The UniFrac significance test generates different outputs given semantically equivalent inputs – Jeffrey Long – Proceedings of the 5th ACM Conference on Bioinformatics, Computational Biology, and Health Informatics

“We identify a discrepancy in the UniFrac methodology that causes semantically equivalent inputs to produce different outputs in tests of statistical significance.”

Microbes in the news

SpaceX 4 splashes down, returns bacteria samples to Earth – Josh Barrett – WaayTV

“HudsonAlpha’s Genomic Sciences Lab will be sequencing the genomes of E. coli bacteria that were aboard the ISS. For some reason, bacteria are not as susceptible to antibiotics in space.”

Bik’s Picks

Why Millennials &%#@! Love Science – Alexandra Ossola – The Atlantic

“Today’s young adults see new discoveries both as a source of awe and a means for innovation.”

1,000 Flavors of Banana: the New Science of Food Additives – Annie Gasparro – The Wall Street Journal

“Rather than sourcing the jalapeño or poblano pepper, you can create it with a flavor house, and just apply it over a corn chip,” said Jared Simon, marketing director for Hain Celestial Group Inc. ’s snacks and bakery division, which uses natural flavors for its foods such as Terra vegetable chips.”

Spooky Science: The Sounds of Halloween – Science Buddies – Scientific American

“In this science activity, you will investigate what goes into the composition of a perfect creepy soundtrack. “

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Non-human microbiome digest, October 28, 2014

Microbiome of rodent blood, oysters, sponges, hydras, Eucalyptus, soil, and a very deep location.

Animal microbiome

* Association of Host and Microbial Species Diversity across Spatial Scales in Desert Rodent Communities – Yoni Gavish – PLOS ONE

“Following pyrosequencing of rodent blood samples, bacterial communities were found to be comprised primarily of broad niche lineages. “

Metagenomic Assessment of the Eastern Oyster-Associated Microbiota – Ashvini Chauhan – ASM Genome Announcements

“Bacteria associated with the Eastern oysters (Crassostrea virginica) native to Apalachicola Bay, FL, were investigated using 16S rRNA gene amplicon metagenomic sequencing”

Temporal changes in the diazotrophic bacterial communities associated with Caribbean sponges Ircinia stroblina and Mycale laxissima – Fan Zhang, Jan Vicente and Russell T. Hill – Frontiers in Microbiology

“Diazotrophic communities associated with two Caribbean sponges, Ircinia strobilina and Mycale laxissima were studied in a time series during which three individuals of each sponge were collected in four time points “

Species-Specific Viromes in the Ancestral Holobiont Hydra – Juris A. Grasis – PLOS ONE

“We sought to determine the viral communities associating with different Hydra species, whether these viral communities were altered with environmental stress, and whether these viruses affect the Hydra-associated holobiont.”

Plant microbiome

* Microbial Cargo: Do bacteria on symbiotic propagules reinforce the microbiome of lichens? – Ines Aline Aschenbrenner – Environmental Microbiology

“The lung lichen was sampled from three localities in eastern Austria to analyze their associated bacterial communities by bar-coded pyrosequencing, network analysis and fluorescence in situ hybridization.”

Soil microbial properties in Eucalyptus grandis plantations of different ages – C.T. Cortez – Journal of soil science and plant nutrition

“We investigated the soil microbial properties (soil microbial C, N, respiration, carbon use efficiency, and microbial C-to-N ratio) among Eucalyptus grandis plantations of differing ages (1 to 4 years) in Northeast Brazil. “

Soil, rocks, and sediments microbiome

* In-depth analyses of deep subsurface sediments using 454-pyrosequencing reveals a reservoir of buried fungal communities at record-breaking depths – Vanessa Rédou – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“Here, we investigated the vertical distribution of DNA and RNA fungal signatures within subseafloor sediments of the Canterbury basin (New Zealand) by 454 pyrotag sequencing of fungal genetic markers.”

* Just in time for Halloween: RNA-based molecular survey of biodiversity of limestone tombstone microbiota in response to atmospheric sulfur pollution – Federica Villa – Letters in Applied Microbiology

“In this study, the biofilm microflora of historic limestone tombstones located in a highly polluted urban environment (Cambridge, MA) and in a less polluted location (Lexington, MA), were compared using comprehensive RNA-based molecular analyses of 16S rRNA gene sequences as well as sequences of genes for different pathways of sulfur metabolism (soxB, apsA, dsrA).”

Methane dynamics regulated by microbial community response to permafrost thaw – Carmody K. McCalley – Nature

“Here we show that changes in vegetation and increasing methane emissions with permafrost thaw are associated with a switch from hydrogenotrophic to partly acetoclastic methanogenesis”

Land use and seasonal effects on a Mediterranean soil bacterial community – D. Franciolia – Journal of soil science and plant nutrition

“We compared the fingerprints from both independent replicates and pooled samples to ascertain the best approach for studying the environmental effects on bacterial composition. “

Environmental controls on microbial communities in continental serpentinite fluids
Melitza Crespo-Medina – Frontiers in Microbiology

“Growth was monitored by direct microscopic counts; DNA yield and community composition was assessed at the end of the three month incubation”

Water microbiome

* Microbial transformation of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill – past, present, and future perspectives – Nikole E. Kimes – Frontiers in Microbiology

“In this review, we summarize the microbial response to the oil spill as described by studies performed during the past four years”

Diversity and geochemical structuring of bacterial communities along a salinity gradient in a carbonate aquifer subject to sea water intrusion – Marina Héry – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“The objective of this study was to characterize and compare bacterial community diversity and composition along a vertical saline gradient in a carbonate coastal aquifer using high throughput sequencing of 16S rRNA genes”

The Variation of Microbial Communities in a Depth Profile of an Acidic, Nutrient-Poor Boreal Bog in Southwestern Finland – Irina Tsitko – OJE

“High throughput sequencing was used to characterize the bacterial communities throughout the bog’s depth profile.”

Spatial distribution patterns of benthic microbial communities along the Pearl Estuary, China – Jiwen Liu – Systematic and Applied Microbiology

“In the present study, benthic microbial communities along the Pearl Estuary, a typical subtropical estuary in China subjected to extensive anthropogenic disturbance, were investigated using 16S rRNA gene-based pyrosequencing.”

Microbes of the built environment

* Bacterial biogeographical patterns in a cooking centre for hospital foodservice – Giuseppina Stellato – International Journal of Food Microbiology

“In this study, the bacterial biogeographical patterns in a hospital cooking centre was studied by 16S rRNA – based culture-independent high-throughput amplicon sequencing in order to provide a comprehensive mapping of the surfaces and tools that come in contact with foods during preparation.”

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Non-human microbiome digest, October 27, 2014

Microbiomes of camels, cheetahs, jackals, birds and reptiles, limpets, corals, plant roots, soils, and sea water.

Animal microbiome

* In-depth diversity analysis of the bacterial community resident in the camel rumen – Javad Gharechahi – Systematic and Applied Microbiology

“In this study, 16S rRNA gene amplicon pyrosequencing was applied in order to explore the structure of the bacterial community inhabiting the camel rumen.”

Oligotyping reveals differences between gut microbiomes of free-ranging sympatric Namibian carnivores (Acinonyx jubatus, Canis mesomelas) on a bacterial species-like level – Sebastian Menke – Frontiers in Microbiology

“Here, we used Illumina MiSeq to sequence amplicons generated from the V4 region of the 16S rRNA gene to investigate the gut microbiome of two free-ranging sympatric Namibian carnivore species, the cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) and the black-backed jackal (Canis mesomelas).”

Diet is a major factor governing the fecal butyrate-producing community structure across Mammalia, Aves and Reptilia – Marius Vital – ISME Journal

“We investigated the butyrate-producing community in hindgut-fermenting Mammalia (n=38), Aves (n=8) and Reptilia (n=8) using a gene-targeted pyrosequencing approach of the terminal genes of the main butyrate-synthesis pathways”

Decadal changes in common reef coral populations and their associations with algal symbionts (Symbiodinium spp.) – Timothy R. McClanahan – Marine Ecology

“Decadal populations changes in four coral taxa and their patterns of association with algal symbionts (Symbiodinium spp. – 10 years of sampling) were examined on Kenyan back reefs over a period of climatic disturbances (1991−2009). “

Metaphylogenomic and Potential Functionality of the Limpet Patella pellucida’s Gastrointestinal Tract Microbiome – Magda Dudek – International Journal of Molecular Sciences

“This study investigated the microbial diversity associated with the digestive tract of the seaweed grazing marine limpet Patella pellucida.”

Plant microbiome

* Distinct root-associated bacterial communities on three wild plant species growing in a common field – Kristin Aleklett – PeerJ Preprints

“We sampled endophytic and epiphytic bacteria in root tissues from a population of a wild, clonal plant… as well as two neighboring plant species … to determine if plant species hosted unique root microbiota”

The fungal leaf endophyte Paraconiothyrium variabile specifically metabolizes the host-plant metabolome for its own benefit – Yuan Tian – Phytochemistry

“..we have investigated the action of the endophytic fungus Paraconiothyrium variabile, isolated from the leaves of Cephalotaxus harringtonia, on the secondary metabolome of the host-plant. “

Soil microbiome

Late winter under ice pelagic microbial communities in the high Arctic Ocean and the impact of short-term exposure to elevated CO2 levels – Adam Monier – Frontiers in Microbiology

“Phylogenetic diversity was greater in the attached fraction compared to the free-living fraction in situ, in the controls and in the treatments.”

The ecological dichotomy of ammonia-oxidizing archaea and bacteria in the hyper-arid soils of the Antarctic Dry Valleys – Catarina M. Magalhães – Frontiers in Microbiology

“Here we showed that AOB and AOA amoA gene diversity was generally low; only four AOA and three AOB operational taxonomic units (OTUs) were identified from a total of 420 AOA and AOB amoA clones.”

Soil bacterial community composition altered by increased nutrient availability in Arctic tundra soils – Akihiro Koyama – Frontiers in Microbiology

“Fertilization significantly altered overall bacterial community composition and reduced evenness, to a greater degree in organic than mineral soils, and in the 1989 compared to the 2006 site.”

Effect of volatile organic compounds absorbed to fresh biochar on survival of Bacillus mucilaginosus and structure of soil microbial communities – Daquan Sun – Journal of Soils and Sediments

“The structure of a soil microbial community incubated in biochar was examined via denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE). “

Broad host range plasmids can invade an unexpectedly diverse fraction of a soil bacterial community – Uli Klümper – ISME Journal

“We identified transfer to many different recipients belonging to 11 different bacterial phyla. “

Water microbiome

Genomes and gene expression across light and productivity gradients in eastern subtropical Pacific microbial communities – Chris L Dupont – ISME Journal

“Relative to surface waters, bacterial SCM communities displayed greater genetic diversity and enrichment in putative sulfur oxidizers, multiple actinomycetes, low-light-adapted Prochlorococcus and cell-associated viruses.”

Aerobic methanotrophic communities at the Red Sea brine-seawater interface – Rehab Z. Abdallah – Frontiers in Microbiology

“The current study analyzed the aerobic free–living methane-oxidizing bacterial communities that potentially contribute to methane oxidation at the brine-seawater interfaces of the three aforementioned brine pools, using metagenomic pyrosequencing, 16S rRNA pyrotags and pmoA library constructs. “

Bacterial community structure is indicative of chemical inputs in the Upper Mississippi River – Christopher Staley – Frontiers in Microbiology

“Bacterial communities were characterized by Illumina sequencing of the V6 region of 16S rDNA and compared to >40 chemical and nutrient concentrations. “

Semiconductor Sequencing Reveals the Diversity of Bacterial Communities in an Amazonian Reservoir – Diego Assis das Graças – Aquatic Science and Technology

“In this study, we used a next-generation sequencing platform, the Ion Torrent Personal Genome Machine, and employed a barcode library to investigate the bacterial diversity along a 70-m deep water column in the proximity of the dam. “

Seasonal changes of microbial communities in two shallow peat bog lakes – Sylwia Lew – Folia Microbiologica

“We investigated the seasonal dynamics of the microbial community in two small peat bog lakes, Kuźnik Olsowy and Kuźnik Bagienny, located in western Poland.”

Bioreactor microbiome

Methane-fed microbial microcosms show differential community dynamics and pinpoint taxa involved in communal response – Igor Y Oshkin – ISME Journal

“We report observations on the dynamics of bacterial communities in response to methane stimulus in laboratory microcosm incubations prepared with lake sediment samples.”

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Microbiome digest, October 21, 2014

Human oral microbiome

Abstract 4834: Microbiome in Oral Epithelial Dysplasia and Squamous Cell Carcinoma
Deepak Saxena – Cancer Research

“PCR amplicons targeting V3-V5 region of 16S rRNA gene were sequenced by 454 pyrosequencing. “

Human respiratory microbiome

Microbial Communities in the Upper Respiratory Tract of Patients with Asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease – HeeKuk Park – PLOS ONE

“To account for the qualitative and quantitative diversity of the 16S rRNA gene in the oropharynx, the microbiomes of 18 asthma patients, 17 COPD patients, and 12 normal individuals were assessed using a high-throughput next-generation sequencing analysis.”

Human gut microbiome

Decreased bacterial diversity characterizes an altered gut microbiota in psoriatic arthritis and resembles dysbiosis of inflammatory bowel disease – Jose U. Scher – Arthritis & Rheumatology

“High-throughput 16S rRNA pyrosequencing was utilized to compare community composition of gut microbiota in PsA patients, subjects with psoriasis of the skin and healthy, matched-controls. “

Pregnancy and birth

The Salivary Scavenger and Agglutinin in Early Life: Diverse Roles in Amniotic Fluid and in the Infant Intestine – Martin Parnov Reichhardt – Journal of Immunology

“The present study revealed that SALSA was present in the amniotic fluid (AF) and exceptionally enriched in both meconium and feces of infants. “

Animal microbiome

* Unique and shared responses of the gut microbiota to prolonged fasting: a comparative study across five classes of vertebrate hosts – Kevin D. Kohl – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“We used 16S rRNA sequencing to document changes in colonic and cecal microbiomes of animals representing five classes of vertebrates at four time points through prolonged fasting: tilapia, toads, geckos, quail, and mice. “

GeoChip-based insights into the microbial functional gene repertoire of marine sponges (HMA, LMA) and seawater – Kristina Bayer – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“By use of GeoChip, altogether 20,273 probes encoding for 627 functional genes and representing 16 gene categories were identified”

Natural volcanic CO2 seeps reveal future trajectories for host–microbial associations in corals and sponges – Kathleen M Morrow – ISME Journal

“The corals Acropora millepora and Porites cylindrica were less abundant and hosted significantly different microbial communities at the CO2 seep than at nearby control sites <500 m away.”
Plant microbiome

Phylogenetic conservatism in plant-soil feedback and its implications for plant abundance – Brian L. Anacke – Ecology Letters

“We conclude that soil biota influence the abundance of close plant relatives in nature.”

Bioreactor microbiome

Influence of Acidic pH on Hydrogen and Acetate Production by an Electrosynthetic Microbiome – Edward V. LaBelle – PLOS ONE

“Production of hydrogen and organic compounds by an electrosynthetic microbiome using electrodes and carbon dioxide as sole electron donor and carbon source, respectively, was examined after exposure to acidic pH (~5). “

Metagenomics / Transcriptomics / Bioinformatics

Census-based rapid and accurate metagenome taxonomic profiling – Amirhossein Shamsaddini – BMC Genomics

“We have developed a robust subsampling-based algorithm implemented in a tool called CensuScope meant to take a ‘sneak peak’ into the population distribution and estimate taxonomic composition as if a census was taken of the metagenomic landscape. “

Metatranscriptomes from diverse microbial communities: assessment of data reduction techniques for rigorous annotation – Andrew Toseland – BMC Genomics

“To investigate the effect of such techniques on the annotation of metatranscriptome data we assess two commonly employed methods: clustering and de-novo assembly. To do this, we also developed an approach to simulate 454 and Illumina metatranscriptome data sets with varying degrees of taxonomic diversity. “

Microbial Ecology

Mathematical Modeling of Microbial Community Dynamics: A Methodological Review – Hyun-Seob Song – Processes

“In this article, we provide an overview of mathematical tools that include not only current mainstream approaches, but also less traditional approaches that, in our opinion, can be potentially useful. “

A phylogenetic perspective on species diversity, β-diversity, and biogeography for the microbial world – Albert Barberán† and Emilio O. Casamayor – Molecular Ecology

“We explored links between evolution/phylogeny and community ecology using bacterial 16S rRNA gene information from a high altitude lakes district dataset to describe phylogenetic community composition, spatial distribution, and β-diversity and biogeographical patterns applying evolutionary relatedness without relying on any particular operational taxonomic unit definition.”

Distance-Decay and Taxa-Area Relationships for Bacteria, Archaea and Methanogenic Archaea in a Tropical Lake Sediment – Davi Pedroni Barreto – PLOS ONE

“The samples were analyzed using T-RFLP (Terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism) targeting mcrA (coding for a subunit of methyl-coenzyme M reductase) and the genes of Archaeal and Bacterial 16S rRNA.”

More microbiology

From Denise Monack’s lab: Role of disease-associated tolerance in infectious superspreaders – Smita Gopinath – PNAS USA

“Using a mouse model of Salmonella infection, we show that levels of Salmonella are equivalent between antibiotic-treated superspreader and nonsuperspreader hosts; however, superspreader hosts are uniquely able to tolerate antibiotic treatment, unlike nonsuperspreader hosts. “

*Also see:  Antibiotics may help Salmonella spread in infected animals, scientists learn – Stanford Medicine News

Spatial organization of bacterial chromosomes – Xindan Wang, David Z Rudner – Current Opinion in Microbiology

“Here, we summarize these different patterns highlighting similarities and differences and discuss the protein factors that help establish and maintain them.”

Bacterial healers: Microbes can redeem themselves to fight disease – Susan Gaidos – Science News

“It’s just a matter of time before bacterial-based treatments become a routine part of a doctor’s toolkit, says microbiologist Robert Britton of the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, who is studying the relationship between microbes and human health. “

Techniques

Rapid fingerprinting of methanogenic communities by high-resolution melting analysis – Jaai Kim, Changsoo Lee – Bioresource Technology

“The new method produced robust community clustering and ordination results comparable to the results from the commonly used denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) performed in parallel.”

Microbes in the news

Our unique ‘microbial aura’ travels with us wherever we go – Science Friday – PRI

“Unless you lived exactly the same life as me, you would not have the same microbiome. You are, in essence, microbially unique,” explains Jack Gilbert

We’re making a Microbiome Documentary Series and could use your Help – Jamie – Reddit

“My name’s Jamie and I’m part of a team trying to crowdfund a documentary series on the human microbiome titled: ‘Redefining Human’.”

Building houses with bacteria – Euronews

“Houses of the future could be partially built with bacteria. It sounds like science fiction but researchers involved in an EU-backed project in Madrid are working towards making this a concrete reality.”

Bik’s Picks

The Role of Surface Chemistry in Adhesion and Wetting of Gecko Toe Pads – Ila Badge – Scientific Reports

“As expected, under wet conditions, adhesion on a hydrophilic surface (glass) was lower than that on a hydrophobic surface (alkyl-silane monolayer on glass).”

Scientists prepare for an 8-month mission to Mars – on Earth soil- BetaWired

“There’s a new experiment commencing in Hawaii, and the results will help NASA better prepare its astronauts for a lengthy mission to Mars.”

White rhino subspecies is down to one breeding male – Andrea James – BoingBoing

“Sad news from Kenya: the northern white rhino subspecies is down to one breeding male with the death of Suni this month. Only six remain.”

Scientists restore hearing in noise-deafened mice, pointing way to new therapies – ScienceDirect

“Scientists have restored the hearing of mice partly deafened by noise, using advanced tools to boost the production of a key protein in their ears.”

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Microbiome digest, October 17, 2014

Resistance one year after antibiotic treatment, skin microbiome in atopic dermatitis, bacterial 16S rRNA load in the lungs, the rat oral microbiome, and microbes in cheese. And an exciting new discovery by Stanford scientists. Have a great weekend!

 

Multiple site human microbiome

Development of antimicrobial resistance in the normal anaerobic microbiota during one year after administration of clindamycin or ciprofloxacin – Mamun-Ur Rashid – Anaerobe

“Clindamycin or ciprofloxacin or placebo was given for 10 days in three groups. Skin, nasal, saliva, faeces sampling at day -1 and 11, 1, 2, 4 and 12 months.“

Shared microbiome in gums and the lung in an outpatient population – Patrick R. Schmidlin – Journal of Infection

“PCR to determine four periopathogens and seven less pathogenic species in both the periodontal pocket and bronchial protected specimen brush was used. “

Human skin microbiome

* Review: Role of the skin microbiome in atopic dermatitis – Alexander Salava and Antti Lauerma – Clinical and Translational Allergy

“Molecular genetics have dramatically changed our vision of the micro-organisms colonizing the human skin and recently well-documented changes in the skin microbiome in atopic dermatitis have become evident.”

Human respiratory microbiome

* The effect of long-term macrolide treatment on respiratory microbiota composition in non-cystic fibrosis bronchiectasis: an analysis from the randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled BLESS trial – Geraint B Rogers – The Lancet Respiratory Medicine

“Microbiota composition was determined by 16S rRNA gene sequencing of sputum samples from participants in the BLESS trial”

A Comparison between Droplet Digital and Quantitative PCR in the Analysis of Bacterial 16S Load in Lung Tissue Samples from Control and COPD GOLD 2 – Marc A. Sze – PLOS ONE

“qPCR and ddPCR were performed on these samples using primers spanning the V2 region on the 16S rRNA gene along with negative controls. Total 16S counts were compared between the two methods.”

Human gut microbiome

* With pictures! Fecal microbiota transplantation: A ‘How-To’ guide for nurses – Sharyn Leis – Collegian

“However, to date, much of the literature addresses the procedure from a physician’s point of view, and can therefore be lacking in practical detail. As nurses are often the ‘unsung heroes’ of the procedure, it is timely to address the subject from a nursing perspective.”

The Intestinal Microbiota and Microenvironment in Liver – Hong-Di Ma- Autoimmunity Reviews

“But the interplay between the intestinal tract and the liver may explain the increased association with autoimmune liver diseases and inflammatory bowel diseases. “

Alterations of gut barrier and gut microbiota in food restriction, food deprivation and protein-energy wasting – L. Genton – Clinical Nutrition

“This review… highlights the complex interactions between the components of gut barrier in depleted states due to food deprivation, food restriction and protein energy wasting and shows that these interactions are multidirectional”

Application of next-generation sequencing to study ascitic microbiome in cirrhotic patients with or without spontaneous bacterial peritonitis – Ye Feng- Journal of Microbiology, Immunology and Infection

“Both the 16S polymerase chain reaction approach and the whole genome shotgun approach were adopted for the next-generation sequencing technology. “

Chronic ethanol consumption alters intestinal microbiota impairing immune function – T. Barr – Alcohol

The gastrointestinal microbiome – functional interference between stomach and intestine – Loris R. Lopetuso – Best Practice & Research Clinical Gastroenterology

“This review focuses and speculates on the possible interactions between gastric microorganisms and intestinal microbiota and on the consequences of this interplay in modulating gut health.”

Animal models of microbiome research

Can Pre-Weaning Modulation of Intestinal Microbiota by Oligosaccharides or Amoxicillin Program Adult One in Rats? – Fanny B. Morel – Nutrition

“As revealed by a targeted qPCR approach, programming of adult intestinal microbiota seems to vary according to the nature of the pre-weaning microbiotal modulator.”

Animal microbiome

* Characterization of the rat oral microbiome and the effects of dietary nitrate – Embriette R. Hyde – Free Radical Biology and Medicine

“Demonstrates the utility of using metagenomics techniques to characterize the healthy rat tongue microbiome and to compare it to the healthy human tongue microbiome.”

Soil microbiome

High-Level Diversity of Tailed Phages, Eukaryote-Associated Viruses, and Virophage-Like Elements in the Metaviromes of Antarctic Soils – Olivier Zablocki – Applied and Environmental Microbiology

“The metaviromes of two distinct Antarctic hyperarid desert soil communities have been characterized.”

Food microbiology

Microbial communities involved in Kashar cheese ripening – Oğuz Aydemir – Food Microbiology

“The molecular classification and identification of 594 LAB isolates during Kashar cheese ripening were performed through (GTG)5–PCR fingerprinting of their genomic DNA followed by verification of the (GTG)5–PCR clusters obtained after numerical analysis through 16S rRNA gene sequencing of representative isolates. “

Characterization of the bacterial biodiversity in Pico cheese (an artisanal Azorean food)
Cristina Riquelme – International Journal of Food Microbiology

“Pyrosequencing of tagged amplicons of the V3–V4 regions of the 16S rDNA and Operational Taxonomic Unit-based (OTU-based) analysis were applied to obtain an overall idea of the microbiota in Pico cheese and to elucidate possible differences between cheese-makers (A, B and C) and maturation times.”

Metagenomics/Bioinformatics

Likelihood-Based Gene Annotations for Gap Filling and Quality Assessment in Genome-Scale Metabolic Models – Matthew N. Benedict – PLOS Computational Biology

“Here we develop an approach for applying genomic information to predict alternative functions for genes and estimate their likelihoods from sequence homology. “

Microbes in the news

‘Critical Conversation’ to focus on human microbiome – Sue Wuetcher – UB Reporter, University at Buffalo

“David Relman, the Thomas C. and Joan M. Merigan Professor and professor of microbiology and immunology at the Stanford University School of Medicine, will speak on “Your Inner Self: The Human Microbiome in Health and Disease””

 

Bik’s Weekend Picks

Want to Ace That Test? Get the Right Kind of Sleep – Benedict Carey – New York Times

“Scientists now argue that a primary purpose of sleep is learning consolidation, separating the signal from the noise and flagging what is most valuable.”

‘Human face of science’: Researchers dance to raise funds for cancer study – RT.com

“Biomedicine scientists in Barcelona have released a music clip aimed at raising funds for medical research, as well as promoting their profession’s “human face.” The video’s release comes amid low levels of public interest in science throughout Spain.”

In science, popularity breeds unreliability – Tom Siegfried – Science News

“In recent decades, pressure to publish and seek publicity has distorted the scientific enterprise. Scientists need grants. Getting published raises the likelihood of getting those grants. “

Satire: Scientists Discover Two New Kinds Of Bird Poop – The Allium

“Scientists at Stanford University have revealed that they have discovered two new species of bird poop that defy classification. These are the first new species of poop that have been discovered in thirty five years. The findings have been reported this week in the journal Nature.”

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Microbiome digest, October 16, 2014

Lung microbiome and pneumonia, bacterial vaginosis, microbiome and jetlag, cardiovascular consequences of gut dysbiosis, bacteria in locust guts and cropland in China, and how to earn some $$$ with your poop.

Human respiratory microbiome

Single-Molecule Long-Read 16S Sequencing To Characterize the Lung Microbiome from Mechanically Ventilated Patients with Suspected Pneumonia – Ian Toma – Journal of Clinical Microbiology

“The present study used NGS of essentially full-length PCR-amplified 16S ribosomal DNA from the bronchial aspirates of intubated patients with suspected pneumonia.”

Human vaginal microbiome

Recent progress in understanding the epidemiology of bacterial vaginosis – Kenyon, Chris R.; Osbak, Kara – Current Opinion in Obstetrics & Gynecology

“Bacterial vaginosis epidemiology has been transformed by new theoretical insights and methodologies, such as molecular sequencing. We summarize the progress made in these domains.”

Human gut microbiome

Transkingdom Control of Microbiota Diurnal Oscillations Promotes Metabolic Homeostasis – Christoph A. Thaiss – Cell

“Consequently, jet-lag-induced dysbiosis in both mice and humans promotes glucose intolerance and obesity that are transferrable to germ-free mice upon fecal transplantation.”

Far from the Eyes, Close to the Heart: Dysbiosis of Gut Microbiota and Cardiovascular Consequences – Matteo Serino – Current Cardiology Reports

“Here, we report evidence from the literature, as well as a few controversial reports, regarding the putative role of gut microbiota dysbiosis-induced cardiovascular diseases”

Insect microbiome

Cellulolytic activity and structure of symbiotic bacteria in locust guts – L-J Su – Genetics and Molecular Research

“The diversity of gut symbiotic bacteria was studied using denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE). “

Soil microbiome

Effects of Manure Compost Application on Soil Microbial Community Diversity and Soil Microenvironments in a Temperate Cropland in China – Zhen Zhen – PLOS ONE

“Denaturing gradient electrophoresis (DGGE) fingerprinting analysis showed that the structure and composition of bacterial and fungi communities in the six fertilizer treatments varied at different levels. “

Water microbiome

Substratum-Associated Microbiota – Furey, Paula C.; Liess, Antonia – Water Environment Research

“In this review of the 2013 literature, advances in laboratory, field, and assessment methods are highlighted as are updates in taxonomy and systematics.”

More microbiology

Commensally sourced antibiotics – Cláudio Nunes-Alves – Nature Reviews Microbiology

Donia et al. have carried out the first systematic screen of biosynthetic gene clusters (BGCs) in the healthy human microbiota and found that BGCs for the thiopeptide class of antibiotics are widely distributed.”

First aid kit for cholera – Andrea Du Toit – Nature Reviews Microbiology

“In a new study, Gordon and colleagues examined the role of the human gut microbiota in V. cholerae infection and showed that one of its members, Ruminococcus obeum, decreases the expression of V. cholerae virulence factors to limit colonization.”

Microbes in the news

* A Poop Bank in Massachusetts Will Pay You $40 Every Day – Chelsea Rice – Boston.com

“All you have to do is visit OpenBiome, launched in 2012 as the only independent nonprofit stool bank in the country.”

Study reveals rats in NYC carry variety of infectious bacteria – Larry McShane – New York Daily News

“The first-of-its-kind study showed the rodents carrying an average of two bacteria capable of causing gastrointestinal problems for humans and the Seoul hantavirus, which causes a potentially life-threatening fever and kidney failure.”

* New Genes = New Archaea? – Molly Sharlach – The Scientist

“The study, published today (October 15) in Nature, also suggests that genetic transfers from bacteria to archaea are at least five times more common than from archaea to bacteria.”

Bik’s Picks

“Epicenters” of resilience – Mary Lou Zoback – Science

“The 25th anniversary of the magnitude (M) 6.9 Loma Prieta earthquake that struck the San Francisco Bay Area on 17 October 1989 is a fitting time to examine what progress has been made in increasing community resilience to minimize seismic risk. “

Cells’ powerhouses were once energy parasites: Study upends current theories of how mitochondria began – Science Daily

“Parasitic bacteria were the first cousins of the mitochondria that power cells in animals and plants — and first acted as energy parasites in those cells before becoming beneficial, according to a new study”

How Did We Become a Society Suspicious of Science? – Keith M. Parsons – Huffington Post

“But something has been lost. Fifty years ago science was king. Science had respect; it was bigger than ideology. No longer. “

 

Biology Week: Bio-bodies Bake Off Public Vote – Physiological Society

“In the lead up to biology week we set you a challenge! We wanted you to celebrate the science of life by creating your own physiology bakes, and you didn’t let us down! ”

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