Microbiome digest, August 17, 2014

Childhood undernutrition and the gut microbiome, hibernating ground squirrels, Sphagnum, nematodes, and forensic discrimination of soils.

Human gut microbiome

An evolving perspective about the origins of childhood undernutrition and nutritional interventions that includes the gut microbiome – Tahmeed Ahmed – Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences

“This paper summarizes work on mechanisms underlying the varied manifestations of childhood undernutrition and discusses current gaps in knowledge and challenges to our understanding of undernutrition and infection/immunity throughout the human life cycle, focusing on early childhood growth. ”

Animal microbiome

Hibernation alters the diversity and composition of mucosa-associated bacteria while enhancing antimicrobial defense in the gut of 13-lined ground squirrels – Kimberly A. Dill-McFarland – Molecular Ecology

“We used 16S rRNA pyrosequencing and cecal tissue protein analysis to investigate the effects of hibernation on the mucosa-associated bacterial microbiota and host responses in 13-lined ground squirrels.”

Diversity of Bacteria Carried by Pinewood Nematode in USA and Phylogenetic Comparison with Isolates from Other Countries – Diogo Neves Proença – PLOS ONE

“The objective of this study was to evaluate the diversity of the bacterial community carried by B. xylophilus, isolated from different Pinus spp. with PWD in Nebraska, United States. “

Plant microbiome

The Sphagnum microbiome supports bog ecosystem functioning under extreme conditions – Anastasia Bragina – Molecular Ecology

“We identified a high functional diversity within the Sphagnum microbiome applying an Illumina-based metagenomic approach followed by de novo assembly and MG-RAST annotation.”

Soil microbiome

Random Whole Metagenomic Sequencing for Forensic Discrimination of Soils – Anastasia S. Khodakova – PLOS ONE

“Shotgun, whole genome amplification (WGA) and single arbitrarily primed DNA amplification (AP-PCR) based sequencing techniques were then used to generate soil metagenomic profiles”

Microbial Community Structure of Relict Niter-Beds Previously Used for Saltpeter Production – Takashi Narihiro – PLOS ONE

“In this study, the microbial community structures within nine relict niter-bed soils were investigated using 454 pyrotag analysis targeting the 16S rRNA gene and the bacterial and archaeal ammonia monooxygenase gene (amoA). “

How Does Conversion of Natural Tropical Rainforest Ecosystems Affect Soil Bacterial and Fungal Communities in the Nile River Watershed of Uganda? – Peter O Alele – PLOS ONE

“Overall, our results suggest that soil microbial communities are relatively resilient to forest conversion and despite a substantial and consistent change in the soil environment, the effects of conversion differed widely among sites. “

Soil-Borne Microbial Functional Structure across Different Land Uses – Eiko E. Kuramae – The Scientific World Journal

“In a multivariate regression tree analysis of soil physicochemical properties and genes detected by functional microarrays, the main factor that explained the different microbial community functional structures was C : N ratio.”

Water microbiome

Temperature response of denitrification and anammox rates and microbial community structure in Arctic fjord sediments – Andy Canion – Environmental Microbiology

“Community structure in intact sediments and slurry incubations was determined using Illumina MiSeq SSU rRNA gene sequencing.”

Complex communities of small protists and unexpected occurrence of typical marine lineages in shallow freshwater systems – Marianne Simon – Environmental Microbiology

“We carried out a comparative study based on massive pyrosequencing of amplified 18S rRNA gene fragments of protists in the 0.2-5 μm-size range in one brook and four shallow ponds located in the Natural Regional Park of the Chevreuse Valley, France.”

Metagenomics

Impact of single-cell genomics and metagenomics on the emerging view of extremophile “microbial dark matter” – Brian P. Hedlund- Extremophiles

“Unraveling the mysteries of these candidate phyla is a grand challenge in microbiology and is especially important in habitats where they are abundant, including some extreme environments and low-energy ecosystems.”

Metabolomics

Metabolic Modelling of Spatial Heterogeneity of Biofilms in Microbial Fuel Cells Reveals Substrate Limitations in Electrical Current Generation – Nadeera Jayasinghe – Biotechnology Journal

“The goal of this work is to develop a model that integrates genome-scale metabolic models with the model of biofilm environment. “

Bioinformatics

Rarefaction and extrapolation of phylogenetic diversity – Anne Chao – Methods in Ecology and Evolution

“We develop in this paper the “PD accumulation curve” (an extension of the species accumulation curve) to depict how PD increases with sampling size and sample completeness.”

Microbes in the news

Can’t Stick to That Diet? Blame Your Gut Bacteria – Nolan Feeney – Time

“The gut microbiome, the collection of all the microbes in our digestive tracts, may influence our food choices and behavior, suggests a new study that recently appeared in the journal BioEssays.”

How Clean Is Your Produce? Testing Fruit For Bacteria – WFMyNews2.com

“Ellis took samples of the fruits one by one and placed the samples on a petri dish. She then washed some of the lettuce and repeated the testing procedure on both the head of lettuce and the pre-washed bag of lettuce, in 72-hours the results were in.”

Bik’s Picks

9/11 dust cloud may have caused widespread pregnancy issues – ScienceDaily

“Pregnant women living near the World Trade Center during the 9/11 attacks experienced negative birth outcomes, according to a new paper.”

Volunteers on the scent of science with whale carcass – Peter Fimrite – SF Gate

“If there’s anything as enjoyable to Dan Sudran as sawing through the stinking blubber of a whale carcass and extracting bones from the gooey tissues, it would be showing the results to children.”

Alaska’s Shrinking Glaciers Seen from Space – Kelly Dickerson – LiveScience

“Compared with a vintage satellite photo of the region, an image taken from space last year reveals just how much the glaciers have shrunk over the past 26 years.”

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Non-human microbiome, August 14, 2014

Microbial diversity in lichen, rhizosphere microbiome, and a trip to the bottom of the “seaquence”.

Plant microbiome

Algal and Fungal Diversity in Antarctic Lichens – Chae Haeng Park – Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology

“In the current study, we analyzed algal and lichen-associated fungal community structure in lichen species from King George Island, Antarctica by pyrosequencing of eukaryotic LSU and algal ITS domains of the nuclear rRNA gene.”

Nitrogen-transforming archaea and bacteria in tropical soils are affected under transgenic as compared to non-transgenic maize – Simone Raposo Cotta – Applied and Environmental Microbiology

“The data show that significant changes occurred in the abundances (revealed by qPCR) of ammonia-oxidizing bacterial and archaeal communities as a result of the maize host being genetically-modified.”

Soil microbiome

Spatial patterns of microbial diversity and activity in an aged creosote-contaminated site
Shinjini Mukherjee – ISME Journal

“Spatial distribution of bacterial groups unveiled patterns of niche differentiation regulated by patchy distribution of pollutants and an east-to-west pH gradient at the studied site. “

Water microbiome

Carbohydrate-active enzymes identified by metagenomic analysis of deep-sea sediment bacteria – Barbara Klippel – Extremophiles

“Metagenomic DNA purified from the pooled enrichments was sequenced and analyzed for phylogenetic composition and presence of genes encoding carbohydrate-active enzymes.”

Voyage to the bottom of the ‘seaquence’ – Rachael Wash & Carmen Diaz Soria – Nature Reviews Microbiology

“This month’s Genome Watch highlights the use of deep sequencing metagenomics to identify bacteriophages that carry sulphur-oxidizing genes in deep-sea hydrothermal vent plumes.”

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Non-human microbiome, August 12, 2014

Insect, coral, plant, soil, sediment, and snow microbiome
Insect microbiome

Insect endosymbiont proliferation is limited by lipid availability – Jeremy K Herren – eLife

“In this study, we find that Spiroplasma proliferation specifically depletes host hemolymph diacylglyceride, the major lipid class transported by the lipoprotein, Lpp.”

Coral microbiome

Novel Tools Integrating Metabolic and Gene Function to Study the Impact of the Environment on Coral Symbiosis – Mathieu Pernice and Oren Levy – Frontiers Microbiology

“Here, we review the potential of recent technological advances in molecular biology and approaches using stable isotopes to fill critical knowledge gaps regarding coral symbiotic function. “

Plant microbiome

Towards a systems understanding of plant-microbe interactions – Akira Mine – Frontiers in Plant Science

“Recent advances in metagenomics of microbial communities associated with plants further point to the importance of systems approaches and open a research area of microbial community reconstruction. “

Amazonian Dark Earth and Plant Species from the Amazon Region Contribute to Shape Rhizosphere Bacterial Communities – Amanda Barbosa Lima – Microbial Ecology

The aim of this study was to assess the effects of ADE and its surrounding soil on the rhizosphere bacterial communities of two leguminous plant species that frequently occur in the Amazon region in forest sites (Mimosa debilis) and open areas (Senna alata).”

Rhizosphere effect and salinity competing to shape microbial communities in Phragmites australis (Cav.) Trin. ex-Steud – Luigimaria Borruso – FEMS Microbiology Letters

“Microbiological analyses have been done by Automated Ribosomal Intergenic Spacer Analysis (ARISA) and partial 16S rRNA gene 454 pyrosequencing. “

Soil and sediment microbiome

Diversity of Bacterial Communities Along a Petroleum Contamination Gradient in Desert Soils – Raeid M. M. Abed – Microbial Ecology

“We investigated bacterial diversity and changes therein in five desert soils exposed to different levels of oil pollution.”

16S rRNA Gene Survey of Microbial Communities in Winogradsky Columns – Ethan A. Rundell – PLOS ONE

“A Winogradsky column is a clear glass or plastic column filled with enriched sediment. Over time, microbial communities in the sediment grow in a stratified ecosystem with an oxic top layer and anoxic sub-surface layers.”

Phylogenetic and Functional Diversity of Microbial Communities Associated with Subsurface Sediments of the Sonora Margin, Guaymas Basin – Adrien Vigneron – PLOS ONE

“Microbial community structure and abundance and distribution of dominant populations were assessed using complementary molecular approaches .. and correlated to comprehensive geochemical data.”

Isolation of Sphaerotilus-Leptothrix-strains from iron bacteria communities in Tierra del Fuego wetlands – B Schmidt – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“The present work increases the number and diversity of cultivated SLG bacteria by obtaining isolates from biofilms and sediment samples of wetlands in Tierra del Fuego.”

Water and snow microbiome

Snow Surface Microbiome on the High Antarctic Plateau (DOME C) – Luigi Michaud – PLOS ONE

“In this study, we investigated the microbial diversity in the surface snow surrounding the Concordia Research Station on the High Antarctic Plateau through a polyphasic approach, including .. (CARD-FISH), and phylogenetic identification by 16S RNA gene clone library sequencing and 454 16S amplicon pyrosequencing.”

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Microbiome digest, August 7, 2014

Microbiome and caries, colorectal cancer, and inflammatory bowel diseases. Microbiomes of fish, dogs, and mosses, microscopic life in an asphalt lake, and the Picks.

Human mouth microbiome

Identification of the Microbiota in Carious Dentin Lesions Using 16S rRNA Gene Sequencing – Junko Obata – PLOS ONE

“In the present study, the bacterial communities in the carious dentin of Japanese subjects were analyzed comprehensively with molecular approaches using the 16S rRNA gene.”

Human gut microbiome

The Human Gut Microbiome as a Screening Tool for Colorectal Cancer – Joseph P. Zackular, Mary A.M. Rogers, Mack T. Ruffin IV, and Patrick D. Schloss – Cancer Prevention Research

“Analysis of the gut microbiome from stool samples revealed both an enrichment and depletion of several bacterial populations associated with adenomas and carcinomas.”

Manipulation of Microbiome, a Promising Therapy for Inflammatory Bowel Diseases – Dapeng Jin, Hongyu Zhang, and Jun Sun – Clinical & Cellular Immunology

“In this review, we summarize the current knowledge of how changes in microbiota may affect the pathogenesis of IBD. “

A perspective on the complexity of dietary fiber structures and their potential effect on the gut microbiota – Bruce R. Hamaker, Yunus E. Tuncil – Journal of Molecular Biology

“the article encourages the building of a framework of information to manipulate the colon microbiota in a predicted way for improved health”

 

Human microbiome after death

Distinctive thanatomicrobiome signatures found in the blood and internal organs of humans – Ismail Can – Journal of Microbiological Methods

“We compared the effectiveness of two methods by amplifying the 16S rRNA genes and sequencing the amplicons from four cadavers”

Animal models of human microbiome

Disturbance of the gut microbiota in early-life selectively affects visceral pain in adulthood without impacting cognitive or anxiety-related behaviors in male rats
S.M. O’Mahony – Neuroscience

“Neonatal antibiotic treatment leads to an increase in visceral sensitivity in adulthood in rats.”

Dog microbiome

The Unculturables: targeted isolation of bacterial species associated with canine periodontal health or disease from dental plaque – Ian J Davis, Christopher Bull, Alexander Horsfall, Ian Morley and Stephen Harris – BMC Microbiology

“Using a quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) directed approach a range of microbiological media were screened and optimized to enrich for previously uncultivated target species. A systematic screening methodology was then employed to isolate the species of interest. ‘

Fish microbiome

Characterization of Microbiota Composition and Presence of Selected Antibiotic Resistance Genes in Carriage Water of Ornamental Fish – Lenka Gerzova – PLOS ONE

“In this study we therefore characterized the prevalence of selected antibiotic resistance genes in the microbiota found in the carriage water of ornamental fish originating from 3 different continents.”

Insect microbiome

The mosquito microbiota influences vector competence for human pathogens – Nathan J Dennison, Natapong Jupatanakul, George Dimopoulos – Current Opinion in Insect Science

“Understanding the interaction between the vector, its microbiota and transmitted pathogens will provide novel opportunities to limit disease transmission.”

Plant microbiome

Bacterial-biota dynamics of eight bryophyte species from different ecosystems
Faisal Hammad Mekky Koua – Saudi Journal of Biological Sciences

“..we utilized the 16S rRNA gene PCR-DGGE and subsequent phylogenetic analyses to investigate the bacterial community of eight bryophyte species collected from three distinct ecosystems from western Japan.”

Soil and water microbiome

Two Neumann U students discover new types of viruses – CatholicPhilly.com

“They collected arthrobacter (a bacteria present in soil) from under trees and near lakes, found and filtered out the phages that were present, and then studied phage anatomy and life cycles.”

Water droplets in oil are microhabitats for microbial life – Rainer U. Meckenstock – Science

“In Pitch Lake, Trinidad and Tobago—the world’s largest asphalt lake—we found that microorganisms are metabolically active in minuscule water droplets (1 to 3 microliters) entrapped in oil. “

Microbiome of the built environment

Halophilic Microorganisms Are Responsible for the Rosy Discolouration of Saline Environments in Three Historical Buildings with Mural Paintings – Jörg D. Ettenauer – PLOS ONE

“In order to get a complete overview of this biodeterioration process, we investigated the microbial communities in saline environments causing the rosy discolouration of mural paintings in three Austrian historical buildings using a combination of culture-dependent and -independent techniques as well as microscopic techniques.”

Metagenomics

High-resolution metagenomics – Eran Mick & Rotem Sorek – Nature Biotechnology

In this issue, Nielsen et al. present a powerful method for interpreting metagenomic data at the level of individual genomes without relying on reference sequences of cultured isolates, which can be generated for only a small fraction of microbial life.

Microbes in the News

The Quantified Microbiome Self – Carl Zimmer – National Geographic

“But as I read the journal Genome Biology today, I decided that someday I might surrender to the Quantified Self movement. I’ll just have to wait till I can track my trillions of microbes from one day to the next.”

Science and Career

Ph.D.’s, come out of the closet! – Lina Nilsson – Science

“If you promise not to tell Fisher’s Ph.D. adviser (or mine), I’ll let you in on this well-hidden truth: Fisher isn’t planning to pursue an academic career.”

Bik’s Picks

Stress during pregnancy can be passed down through generations, rat study shows – Science Daily

Scientists investigating pregnancies in four generations of rats show that inherited epigenetic effects of stress could affect pregnancies for generations.”

This Is Your Brain on Fish – James Hamblin – The Atlantic

Thicker, stronger, and more resilient. Once a week is all it takes, new research says.”

10 Great Novels That Will Make You More Passionate About Science – Charlie Jane Anders – io9

A lot of the best science fiction features scientists who solve problems and make breakthroughs.”

Scientist looking forward to weekend of binge-experimenting – The Allium

Imperial college Scientist Dr. Lou Pole announced earlier today that he was going to spend the entirety of this weekend binge-experimenting.”

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Non-human microbiome, August 5, 2014

Microbiome papers on giraffes, sheeps, sponges and corals, soybean, soil, seawater, and fungi found in vacuum cleaner dust.

Mammal microbiome

The giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) rumen microbiome – Michael Roggenbuck, Cathrine Sauer, Morten Poulsen, Mads F. Bertelsen, Søren Johannes Sørensen – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“Here we investigated the microbial community of 7 wild-caught giraffes (Giraffa camelopardalis), 3 of which were fed natural browse and 4 were fed Boskos pellets, leafy alfalfa hay and cut savanna browse, by characterizing the 16S rRNA gene diversity using 454 FLX high throughput sequencing. “

Two Different Bacterial Community Types Are Linked with the Low-Methane Emission Trait in Sheep – Sandra Kittelmann – PLOS ONE

“Bacterial community structures in 236 rumen samples from 118 high- and low-CH4 emitting sheep formed gradual transitions between three ruminotypes. Two of these (Q and S) were linked to significantly lower CH4 yields”

Invertebrate microbiome

Host-specific microbial communities in three sympatric North Sea sponges – Mohd Azrul Naim, Jose A. Morillo, Søren J. Sørensen, Waleed Abu Al-Soud, Hauke Smidt and Detmer Sipkema – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“In this study we assessed the diversity of the microbial communities hosted by three sympatric sponges living in a semi-enclosed North-Sea environment using pyrosequencing of bacterial and archaeal 16S ribosomal RNA gene fragments.”

Host-specific microbial communities in three sympatric North Sea sponges– Mohd Azrul Naim – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“In this study we assessed the diversity of the microbial communities hosted by three sympatric sponges living in a semi-enclosed North-Sea environment using pyrosequencing of bacterial and archaeal 16S ribosomal RNA gene fragments. “

Disturbance to conserved bacterial communities in the cold water gorgonian coral Eunicella verrucosa – Emma Ransome – FEMS Microbial Ecology

“The bacterial communities associated with healthy and diseased colonies of the cold water gorgonian coral Eunicella verrucosa at three sites off the south-west coast of England were compared using denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and clone libraries. “

Application of a new cultivation technology, I-tip, for studying microbial diversity in freshwater sponges of Lake Baikal, Russia – Dawoon Jung – FEMS Microbial Ecology

“The I-tip was developed as an in situ cultivation device that allows microorganisms to enter and natural chemical compounds to diffuse, thereby permitting the microorganisms to grow utilizing chemical compounds in their natural environment. “

Plant microbiome

Comparison of the Rhizosphere Bacterial Communities of Zigongdongdou Soybean and a High-Methionine Transgenic Line of This Cultivar – Jingang Liang – PLOS ONE

“Using 16S rRNA gene-based pyrosequencing analysis of the V4 region and DNA extracted from bacterial consortia collected from the rhizosphere of soybean plants grown in an agricultural field at the pod-setting stage, we characterized the populational structure of the bacterial community involved.”

Soil microbiome

Exploring the immediate and long-term impact on bacterial communities in soil amended with animal and urban organic waste fertilizers using pyrosequencing and screening for horizontal transfer of antibiotic resistance – Leise Riber, Pernille Hasse Busk Poulsen, Waleed Abu Al-Soud, Lea Benedicte Skov Hansen, Lasse Bergmark, Asker Brejnrod, Anders Norman, Lars Hestbjerg Hansen, Jakob Magid andSøren Johannes Sørensen – FEMS Microbiology Immunology

“Soils were sampled in weeks 0, 3, 9 and 29 after fertilizer application. Pseudomonas isolates were enumerated, and the impact on soil-bacterial community structure was investigated using 16S-rRNA amplicon pyrosequencing.”

Microbial Diversity in Hummock and Hollow Soils of Three Wetlands on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau Revealed by 16S rRNA Pyrosequencing – Yongcui Deng – PLOS ONE

“Principal coordinate analysis (PCoA) indicated that the microbial community structure differed between locations and microtopographies and canonical correspondence analysis indicated an association between microbial community structure and soil properties or geography. “

Seawater microbiome

Metaproteomics reveals differential modes of metabolic coupling among ubiquitous oxygen minimum zone microbes – Alyse K. Hawley, Heather M. Brewer, Angela D. Norbeck, Ljiljana Paša-Tolić, and Steven J. Hallam – PNAS USA

“Here we use metagenomic and metaproteomic methods to chart in situ metabolic networks linking key microbial players driving carbon and nutrient cycling in a seasonally stratified fjord, Saanich Inlet”

Sequencing on the Seven Seas – Rina Shaikh-Lesko – The Scientist

“Researchers have installed an advanced genomics lab facility aboard a boat to create a floating molecular testing facility for marine life sciences”

Microbiome of the Built Environment

Characterization of Fungal Communities in House Dust Samples Collected From Central Portugal—A Preliminary Survey – Ana C.A. Sousa – Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health

“A total of 28 samples were obtained from vacuum cleaner deposits from households located in central Portugal. DNA was extracted from dust samples and fungal communities were analyzed using a culture-independent polymerase chain reaction (PCR)– denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) approach. “

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Microbiome digest, August 4, 2014

Relief in a pressing problem, microbes at high altitude, and microbiome in cystic fibrosis.

Human gut microbiome

So glad this one finally came out!  Structural changes in the gut microbiome of constipated patients – Lixin Zhu – Physiological Genomics

“A cross-sectional pilot study was performed to compare stool microbial composition of 8 constipated patients and 14 non-constipated controls using 16S rRNA gene pyrosequencing.”

Microbiota and diabetes: an evolving relationship – Herbert Tilg, Alexander R Moschen – Gut

“A further hint towards an association between microbiota and T2D has been derived from studies in pregnancy showing that major gut microbial shifts occurring during pregnancy affect host metabolism.”

Harnessing the Intestinal Microbiome for Optimal Therapeutic Immunomodulation – S. Viaud – Cancer Research

“gut commensals, through lipopolysaccharide and other bacterial components, switch the tumor microenvironment, in particular the redox equilibrium and the TNF production of intratumoral myeloid cells during therapies with platinum salts or intratumoral TLR9 agonists combined with systemic anti-IL10R Ab respectively.”

Specific genetic and microbial signature associated with paediatric ileal Crohn’s disease -Isobel Leake – Nature Reviews Gastroenterology & Hepatology

“An increase in DUOX2 expression was associated with an expansion of Proteobacteria across all forms of IBD, whereas downregulation of APOA1 expression in association with depletion of certain Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes taxa was found to be specific for Crohn’s disease.”

Skin and wounds microbiome

Next-Generation Sequencing: A Review of Technologies and Tools for Wound Microbiome Research – Brendan Hodkinson and Elizabeth Grice – Advances in Wound Care

“The purpose of this review is to outline the current platforms, their applications, and the steps necessary to undertake microbiome studies using next-generation sequencing.”

Human respiratory microbiome

Directly Sampling the Lung of a Young Child with Cystic Fibrosis Reveals Diverse Microbiota – Perry S Brown – Annals ATS

“After pathologic examination verified that this child’s lung tissue reflected CF lung disease, we used bacterial rRNA gene pyrosequencing and computational phylogenetic analysis to identify the microbiota in serial sections of the tissue.”

Respiratory Viruses and Bacteria among Pilgrims during the 2013 Hajj – Samir Benkouiten – Emerging Infectious Diseases

“One third (36.3%) of the participants had acquired S. pneumoniae during their stay. Our results confirm high acquisition rates of rhinovirus and S. pneumoniae in pilgrims and highlight the acquisition of coronavirus E229.”

Fish microbiome

The Colonization Dynamics of the Gut Microbiota in Tilapia Larvae – Christos Giatsis – PLOS ONE

“Our results showed that variation in gut microbiota between replicate tanks was not significantly higher than within tank variation, suggesting that there is no tank effect on water and gut microbiota. “

Soil microbiome

FEMS Microbiology Ecology has a special issue on Polar and Alpine Microbiology with many papers on microbiomes of ice and soil. Here is the Editorial:
Polar and alpine microbiology in a changing world – John C. Priscu – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“By virtue of their relatively rapid growth rates and metabolic diversity, we can expect microorganisms to be the first responders to fluctuating climatic conditions.”

Altitudinal Distribution Patterns of Soil Bacterial and Archaeal Communities Along Mt. Shegyla on the Tibetan Plateau – Jun-Tao Wang – Microbial Ecology

“Our results found that the ratio of bacterial to archaeal 16S rRNA gene abundance was negatively related with elevation.”

Water microbiome

Satellite remote sensing data can be used to model marine microbial metabolite turnover – Peter E Larsen – ISME Journal

“We extrapolated marine surface microbial community structure and metabolic potential from 72 16S rRNA amplicon and 8 metagenomic observations using remotely sensed environmental parameters”

Microbial Ecology

Changes in community assembly may shift the relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem function – Joseph E. Knelman and Diana R. Nemergut – Frontiers Microbiology

“Can differences in community assembly alter the relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem function?”

Probiotics

Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG suspected infection in a newborn with intrauterine growth restriction – I. Sadowska-Krawczenko – Beneficial Microbes

“Genotyping with the rep-PCR and AFLP methods confirmed the 100% genetic similarity for both the strain isolated from patient blood and the probiotic product.”

Can Eating Probiotic Yogurt Help Lower Your High Blood Pressure? – Susmita Baral – Wall St Cheat Sheet

“Now, a new study (published Monday in the journal Hypertension) has found another added benefit of probiotics — it may reduce high blood pressure.”

Microbes in the News

Your garden hose: a potential health risk due to Legionella spp. growth facilitated by free-living amoebae – Jacqueline Marie Thomas – Environmental Science & Technology

“Here we present data on FLA and Legionella spp. detected in water and biofilm of two garden hose types over 18 months. “

Truth about your toothbrush – Anne Agbaje – Bussiness Day Online

“You don’t store your plates and glasses by the toilet, so why would you want to place your toothbrush there?” McCombs says. “It’s just common sense to store your toothbrush as far away from the toilet as possible.”

Metabolomics

Fecal volatile organic compounds: a novel, cheaper method of diagnosing inflammatory bowel disease? – Chris SJ Probert – Expert Review of Clinical Immunology

“…this article will focus specifically on the fecal VOC metabolome and its potential role in identifying a novel diagnostic method for IBD.”

Review: Emerging mass spectrometry techniques for the direct analysis of microbial colonies – Jinshu Fang, Pieter C Dorrestein – Current Opinion in Microbiology

“In this review/perspective, we illustrate the emerging mass spectrometry methodologies that enable the interrogation of specialized metabolites directly from microbial colonies.”

Techniques

Improved performance of the PacBio SMRT technology for 16S rDNA sequencing – Jennifer J. Mosher – Journal of Microbiological Methods

“With accurate read lengths of > 1400 base pairs, the PacBio system opens up the possibility of identifying microorganisms to the species level in environmental samples.”

 

Bik’s Picks

The Secret to a Tattoo’s Permanence: The Immune System – Olga Khazan – The Atlantic

“We rarely stop and think about the science of tattoos. In fact, some people don’t even stop and think before getting tattooed.”

 

Mathematical equation to predict happiness: Doesn’t depend on how well things go, but on whether things are better than expected – Science Daily

The happiness of over 18,000 people worldwide has been predicted by a mathematical equation, with results showing that moment-to-moment happiness reflects not just how well things are going, but whether things are going better than expected.”

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Non-human microbiome

Microbiome of sheep, Drosophila on cherries, wild and sugar beets, sauerkraut, sake, and cheese. Sounds like a good meal.
Sheep microbiome

Pros and Cons of Ion-Torrent Next Generation Sequencing versus Terminal Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism T-RFLP for Studying the Rumen Bacterial Community – Gabriel de la Fuente – PLOS ONE

“We analysed the bacterial diversity in the rumen of defaunated sheep following the introduction of different protozoal populations, using both next generation sequencing (NGS: Ion Torrent PGM) and terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP).”

Insect microbiome

The bacterial communities of Drosophila suzukii collected from undamaged cherries
James Angus Chandler – PeerJ

“Using 16S rDNA PCR and Illumina sequencing, we characterized the bacterial communities of larval and adult D. suzukii collected from undamaged, attached cherries in California, USA. “

Evaluating Insect-Microbiomes at the Plant-Insect Interface – Clare L. Casteel, Allison K. Hansen – Journal of Chemical Ecology

“In this review, we critically evaluate the requirements for insect-associated microbes to develop synergistic relationships with their hosts, and we mechanistically discuss how some of these insect-associated microbes can target or modify host plant defenses.”

Saccharide breakdown and fermentation by the honey bee gut microbiome
Authors – Fredrick J. Lee – Environmental microbiology

“In order to better understand the contribution of the microbial community to food processing in the honey bee, we generated a metatranscriptome of the honey bee gut microbiome.”

Plant microbiome

Differences between the rhizosphere microbiome of Beta vulgaris ssp. maritima – ancestor of all beet crops – and modern sugar beets – Christin Zachow – Frontiers in Microbiology

“Therefore, we studied bacterial rhizosphere communities associated with the wild beet B. vulgaris ssp. maritima grown in their natural habitat soil from coastal drift lines (CS) and modern sugar beets (Beta vulgaris ssp. vulgaris) cultivated in CS and potting soil (PS) under greenhouse conditions.”

Endophytic bacterial community of grapevine leaves influenced by sampling date and phytoplasma infection process – Daniela Bulgari – BMC Microbiology

“Metagenomic DNA was extracted from sterilized leaves and the endophytic bacterial community dynamic and diversity were analyzed by taxon specific real-time PCR, Length-Heterogeneity PCR and genus-specific PCR. “

Water microbiology

Core Functional Traits of Bacterial Communities in the Upper Mississippi River Show Limited Variation in Response to Land Cover – Christopher Staley – Frontiers in Microbiology

“In this study we characterized functional microbial diversity at 11 sites along the Mississippi River in Minnesota using both metagenomic sequencing and functional-inference-based (PICRUSt) approaches.”

Potential drivers of microbial community structure and function in Arctic snow – Lorrie Maccario – Frontiers in Microbiology

“We applied a metagenomic approach to nine snow samples taken over two months during the spring season. Fungi, Bacteroidetes and Proteobacteria were predominant in metagenomic datasets and changes in community structure were apparent throughout the field season.”

Soil microbiology

Nutrient addition dramatically accelerates microbial community succession – Knelman JE – PLOS ONE

“We evaluated soil properties and examined bacterial community composition in plots before and one year after fertilization.”

Food microbiology

Sauerkraut: bacteria making food – S.E. Gould – Lab Rat – Scientific American

“As the bacteria required for sauerkraut fermentation are found on the cabbage leaves, it’s a very easy and healthy dish to produce. All you need is cabbage! “

Indigenous bacteria and fungi drive traditional kimoto sake fermentations
Nicholas A. Bokulich – Applied and Environmental Microbiology

“Results demonstrate a dynamic microbial succession, with koji and early moto fermentations dominated by Bacillus, Staphylococcus, and Aspergillus flavus subsp. oryzae, succeeded by Lactobacillus spp. and Saccharomyces cerevisiae later in the fermentations. “

Microbiota characterization of a Belgian protected designation of origin cheese, Herve cheese, using metagenomic analysis – V. Delcenserie – Journal of Dairy Science

“The aim of the study was to analyze the bacterial microbiota of Herve cheese using classical microbiology and a metagenomic approach based on 16S ribosomal DNA pyrosequencing. “

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Non-human microbiome, July 21

Microbiomes of water fleas, marine zooplankton, soil, rumen, and how a microbiome can help woodrats eat toxic plants.

Rumen microbiome

Development of a phylogenetic microarray for comprehensive analysis of ruminal bacterial communities – M. Kim – Journal of Applied Microbiology

“A total of 1,666 OTU-specific probes were designed and synthesized on microarray slides (referred to as RumenBactArray) in a 6×5k format with each probe being represented in triplicate.”

Rodent microbiome

Gut microbes of mammalian herbivores facilitate intake of plant toxins – Kevin D. Kohl – Ecology Letters

“We investigated the gut microbiota of desert woodrats (Neotoma lepida), some populations of which specialise on highly toxic creosote bush (Larrea tridentata). Here, we demonstrate that gut microbes are crucial in allowing herbivores to consume toxic plants. “

Crustacean microbiome

Water fleas require microbiota for survival, growth and reproduction – Marilou P Sison-Mangus – ISME Journal

“We assessed the effect of microbiota on Daphnia magna by experimentally depriving animals of their microbiota and comparing their growth, survival and fecundity to that of their bacteria-bearing counterparts.”

Soil microbiome

Soil Properties and Spatial Processes Influence Bacterial Metacommunities within a Grassland Restoration Experiment – Cheryl A. Murphy – Restoration Ecology

“We found that soil bacterial communities were not influenced by plant restoration, but rather, by the local heterogeneity of soil environmental properties (16.9% of bacterial community variation) and pure spatial effects (11.1%).”

Environmental drivers of soil microbial community distribution at the Koiliaris Critical Zone Observatory – Myrto Tsiknia – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“This study investigates the distribution of archaea, bacteria and fungi as well as the dominant bacterial phyla (Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Firmicutes), and classes of Proteobacteria (α- and β-Proteobacteria) across the Koiliaris watershed by qPCR and associate them with environmental variables. “

Soil microbial community structure and activity along a montane elevational gradient on the Tibetan Plateau – Meng Xu – European Journal of Soil Biology

“We investigated the microbial community composition and functional patterns along an elevational gradient (3100–4600 m above sea level) on Mount Segrila using phospholipid fatty acids (PLFAs) and community level physiological profiles (CLPP). “

Oil pipeline microbiome

Identification and characterization of microbial biofilm communities associated with corroded oil pipeline surfaces – Tiffany R. Lenhart – The Journal of Bioadhesion and Biofilm Research

“Eubacterial and archaeal 16S rRNA sequences of DNA recovered from extracted pipeline pieces, termed ‘cookies,’ revealed the presence of thermophilic sulfidogenic anaerobes, as well as mesophilic aerobes. “

Plankton microbiome

Zooplankton diversity across three Red Sea reefs using pyrosequencing – John K. Pearman – Frontiers in Marine Science

“The diversity of metazoan plankton was investigated by targeting the 18S rRNA gene and clustering OTUs at 97% sequence similarity. A total of 754 and 854 metazoan OTUs were observed in the data set for the 1380F and 1389F primer sets respectively. “

Food microbiology

Cheese Rind Communities Provide Tractable Systems for In Situ and In Vitro Studies of Microbial Diversity – Benjamin E. Wolfe – Cell

“Sequencing of 137 different rind communities across 10 countries revealed 24 widely distributed and culturable genera of bacteria and fungi as dominant community members. “

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Non-human microbiome, July 15

Murine skin commensals, nematodes, Bordeaux vines, polar soil, and water.

Mice microbiome

Adaptive immunity to murine skin commensals – Wei Shen – PNAS

“Here we report, for the first time, that commensal skin bacteria are recognized by major populations of T cells in skin-draining lymph nodes of mice.”

Nematode microbiome

Screen shot 2014-07-15 at 05.21PM, Jul 15NilD CRISPR RNA contributes to Xenorhabdus nematophila colonization of symbiotic host nematodes – Jeff L. Veesenmeyer – Molecular Microbiology

“Our data demonstrate that NilD RNA is conditionally necessary for mutualistic host colonization and suggest that it functions to regulate endogenous gene expression.”

Plant microbiome

Screen shot 2014-07-15 at 05.37PM, Jul 15Characterization of Pythium oligandrum populations that colonise the rhizosphere of vines from the Bordeaux region – Jonathan Gerbore – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“The present study focused on one oomycete, Pythium oligandrum, well-known for its plant protection abilities, which thrives in microbial environment where bacteria and fungal communities are also present. “

Environmental microbial communities  (also see Human Gut digest)

Screen shot 2014-07-15 at 05.18PM, Jul 15Conditionally Rare Taxa Disproportionately Contribute to Temporal Changes in Microbial Diversity – Ashley Shade – mBio

“Using 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing of 3,237 samples from 42 time series of microbial communities from nine different ecosystems (air; marine; lake; stream; adult human skin, tongue, and gut; infant gut; and brewery wastewater treatment), we introduce a new method to detect typically rare microbial taxa that occasionally become very abundant (conditionally rare taxa [CRT]) and then quantify their contributions to temporal shifts in community structure.”

Soil microbiome

Screen shot 2014-07-15 at 05.38PM, Jul 15Environmental drivers of soil microbial community distribution at the Koiliaris Critical Zone Observatory – Myrto Tsiknia – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“This study investigates the distribution of archaea, bacteria and fungi as well as the dominant bacterial phyla (Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Firmicutes), and classes of Proteobacteria (α- and β-Proteobacteria) across the Koiliaris watershed by qPCR and associate them with environmental variables. “

SicilianoSoil fertility is associated with fungal and bacterial richness, whereas pH is associated with community composition in polar soil microbial communities – Steven D. Siciliano – Soil Biology and Biochemistry

“We quantified richness, evenness and taxonomic composition of both fungi and bacteria in 223 Arctic and Antarctic soil samples across 8 locations to test the global applicability of hypotheses concerning edaphic drivers of soil microbial communities that have been primarily developed from studies of bacteria in temperate and tropical systems.”

TianThe effect of irrigation with oil-polluted water on microbial communities in estuarine reed rhizosphere soils – Weijun Tian – Ecological Engineering

“PCR-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis profiles revealed that the structure of the bacterial community was generally less affected, but the dominant flora was changed.”

Metatranscriptomic analysis of Arctic peat soil microbiota – Alexander Tveit – Applied and Environmental Microbiology

“A comparative analysis of mRNA enriched and non-enriched metatranscriptomes showed that mRNA enrichment resulted in a two-fold increase in the relative abundance of mRNA, but biased the relative distribution of mRNA. “

Screen shot 2014-07-15 at 07.15PM, Jul 15Network analysis reveals that bacteria and fungi form modules that correlate independently with soil parameters – Alexandre B de Menezes – Environmental Microbiology

“Network and multivariate statistical analyses were performed to determine interactions between bacterial and fungal community T-RFLPs as well as soil properties in paired woodland and pasture sites.”

Screen shot 2014-07-15 at 07.12PM, Jul 15 1Dynamic Succession of Soil Bacterial Community during Continuous Cropping of Peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.) – Mingna Chen – PLOS ONE

“In this study, 16S rRNA gene clone library analyses were used to study the succession of soil bacterial communities under continuous peanut cultivation.”

Diversity of Bacterial Communities in a Profile of a Winter Wheat Field: Known and Unknown Members – Aurore Stroobants – Microbial Ecology

“In the present work, we have used bar-coded pyrosequencing analysis of the V3 region of the 16S rRNA gene to analyze bacterial diversity in a profile (depths 10, 25, and 45 cm) of a well-characterized field of winter wheat.”

Expression of copper-resistance genes in microbial communities under copper stress and oxic/anoxic conditions – Ludovic Besaury – Environmental Science and Pollution Research

“The abundance and expression of the copper-resistance genes cusA and copA, encoding respectively for a Resistance Cell Nodulation protein and for a P-type ATP-ase pump, was assessed along a gradient of copper concentration in microcosms prepared from Seine estuary mudflat sediment. “

Water microbiome

Screen shot 2014-07-15 at 05.40PM, Jul 15Distinct bacterial assemblages reside at different depths in Arctic multiyear sea ice – Ido Hatam – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“Here, we determine whether bacterial communities: 1) differ with ice depth due to strong physical and chemical gradients, 2) are relatively homogenous within a layer, but differ between layers, or 3) do not vary with ice depth”

Screen shot 2014-07-15 at 05.41PM, Jul 15Microspatial gene expression patterns in the Amazon River Plume – Brandon M. Satinsky – PNAS

“The bacterial and archaeal communities associated with a phytoplankton bloom in Amazon River Plume waters at the outer continental shelf in June 2010 harbored ∼1.0 × 1013 genes and 4.7 × 1011 transcripts per liter that mapped to several thousand microbial genomes.”

Screen shot 2014-07-15 at 05.42PM, Jul 15Synchronous dynamics and correlations between bacteria and phytoplankton in a subtropical drinking water reservoir – Lemian Liu – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“In this study, we evaluated the correlations between bacteria and phytoplankton communities, and determined the relative contribution of phytoplankton community succession to temporal variation of BCC in a subtropical drinking water reservoir (Tingxi Reservoir, southeast China).”

Screen shot 2014-07-15 at 07.12PM, Jul 15Metabolic and phylogenetic profile of bacterial community in Guishan coastal water (Pearl River Estuary), South China Sea – Xiaojuan Hu – Journal of Ocean University of China

“In the present study, the metabolic and phylogenetic profile of the bacterioplankton community in Guishan coastal water (Pearl River Estuary), South China Sea, at 12 sites (S1-S12) were explored by community-level physiological profiling (CLPP) with BIOLOG Eco-plate and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE).”

 

Bioreactor microbiomes

Screen shot 2014-07-15 at 05.39PM, Jul 15

Shifts in the Microbial Community, Nitrifiers and Denitrifiers in the Biofilm in a Full-scale Rotating Biological Contactor – Xingxing Peng – Environmental Science & Technology

“The microbial consortia were profiled using multiple approaches, including 454 high-throughput sequencing of the V3–V4 region of 16S rRNA gene, clone libraries, and quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). “

Enzymatic characterizationEnzymatic characterization of microbial isolates from lignocellulose waste composting: Chronological evolution – Juan Antonio López-González – Journal of Environmental Management

“Ammonification (72.04%), amylolysis (35.65%), hemicellulolyis (30.75%), and proteolysis (33.61%) were the more frequent activities among isolates, with mesophilic bacteria and fungi as the prevalent microbial communities.”

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Non-human microbiome, July 2014

Kittens! And squid, sponges, acid mine drainage in someone’s backyard, soils, and sediments.

Cat microbiome

KittensDeep Illumina-Based Shotgun Sequencing Reveals Dietary Effects on the Structure and Function of the Fecal Microbiome of Growing Kittens – Oliver Deusch – PLOS ONE

“The present study… applied deep Illumina shotgun sequencing to identify the diet-associated functional potential and analyze taxonomic changes of the feline fecal microbiome.”

Squid microbiome

Squid albaGene-Swapping Mediates Host Specificity among Symbiotic Bacteria in a Beneficial Symbiosis – Alba A. Chavez-Dozal – PLOS ONE

“Our results demonstrate that multiple bacterial genetic elements can determine V. fischeri strain specificity between two closely related squid hosts, indicating how important genetic variation is for regulating conspecific beneficial interactions that are acquired from the environment.”

Sponge microbiome 

Review: Diversity and biotechnological potential of microorganisms associated with marine sponges – Fuerst JA – Applied Microbiol Biotechnol (Direct link not working)

“Here, we review recent progress in our understanding of this genetic diversity, its retrieval via culture and genomic approaches, and its implications for chemical diversity and other biotechnology applications of sponge microorganisms and their genes.”

Soils and sediments

StroudMetal(loid) bioaccessibility dictates microbial community composition in acid sulfate soil horizons and sulfidic drain sediments – Jackie Stroud – Environmental Science & Technology

“Microbial community compositions were determined for three soil horizons and drain sediments within an anthropogenically-disturbed coastal acid sulfate landscape using 16S rRNA gene tagged 454 pyrosequencing.”

Screen shot 2014-07-14 at 12.34PM, Jul 14Geochemical and microbiological response to oxidant introduction into reduced subsurface sediment from the Hanford 300 Area, WA – Elizabeth M Percak-Dennett and Eric E. Roden – Environmental Science & Technology

“Together these results indicate the potential for heterotrophic carbon metabolism in the reduced sediments, consistent with the proliferation of known heterotrophic taxa (e.g. Pseudomonadaceae, Burkholderiaceae, Clostridiaceae) inferred from 16S rRNA gene pyrosequencing.”

Brantner AMDResponse of Soil-Associated Microbial Communities to Intrusion of Coal Mine-Derived Acid Mine Drainage – Justin S. Brantner and John M. Senko – Environmental Science & Technology

“Evaluation of pyrosequencing-derived 16S rRNA gene sequences recovered from incubations revealed the development of microbial community characteristics that were similar to those of the mature iron mound sediment.”

Screen shot 2014-07-14 at 12.36PM, Jul 14New carbohydrate-active enzymes identified by screening two metagenomic libraries derived from the soil of a winter wheat field – A. Stroobants – Journal of Applied Microbiology

“The aim of this work was to discover new β-glucosidases by constructing two metagenomic DNA libraries from soil samples collected in winter and spring from a field of winter wheat.”

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