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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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 15, 2014

A seminar this Friday with Pat Schloss, but without HMP girl, aspartame and gut microbiome in a rat model, bacteria in arsenic contaminated soil, and inter-kingdom horizontal gene transfer.

Human oral microbiome

General Immune Status and Oral Microbiology in Patients with Different Forms of Periodontitis and Healthy Control Subjects – Jana Schmidt – PLOS ONE

“Subgingival plaque samples were taken from each individual and immediately cultivated for microbiological examination.”

Pregnancy and birth

* The vaginal microbiome, vaginal anti-microbial defence mechanisms and the clinical challenge of reducing infection-related preterm birth – SS Witkin – BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology

“Ascending bacterial infection is implicated in about 40–50% of preterm births. “

Animal models of microbiome research

* Low-Dose Aspartame Consumption Differentially Affects Gut Microbiota-Host Metabolic Interactions in the Diet-Induced Obese Rat – Marie S. A. Palmnäs – PLOS ONE

“Serum metabolomics analysis revealed aspartame to be rapidly metabolized and to be associated with elevations in the short chain fatty acid propionate, a bacterial end product and highly gluconeogenic substrate, potentially explaining its negative affects on insulin tolerance. “

Effect of dietary supplementation with resveratrol on nutrient digestibility, methanogenesis and ruminal microbial flora in sheep – T. Ma – Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition

“Two experiments were conducted to evaluate the effect of resveratrol on methanogenesis and microbial flora in Dorper × thin-tailed Han cross-bred ewes. “

Soil microbiome

Changing precipitation pattern alters soil microbial community response to wet-up under a Mediterranean-type climate – Romain L Barnard – ISME Journal

“Here, we investigated the effects of extending winter rainfall into the normally dry summer period on soil microbial response to a controlled rewetting event”

Surface binding and intracellular uptake of arsenic in bacteria isolated from arsenic contaminated site – Neha Vishnoi, Sonal Dixit, D.P. Singh – Ecological Engineering

“The present study deals with the surface binding and uptake of arsenic (As) in two bacterial strains (Bacillus subtilis and Paenibacillus macerans) isolated from the As contaminated soil.”

Water microbiome

Effects of ecological engineered oxygenation on the bacterial community structure in an anoxic fjord in western Sweden – Michael Forth – ISME Journal

“We used molecular ecologic methods to study changes in bacterial community structure in response to the oxygenation in the Byfjord. “

Food microbiology

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

“The bacterial and fungal community diversity in 22 home-made yoghurt samples was analyzed by pyrosequencing. “

CRISPRs, phages, viruses

In Hopes Of Fixing Faulty Genes, One Scientist Starts With The Basics – Joe Palca – NPR Morning Edition

“That’s certainly true for Jennifer Doudna. She hasn’t won a Nobel Prize, but many are whispering that she’s in line to win one for her work on something called CRISPR/Cas9 — a tool for editing genes.”

Bioinformatics and metagenomics

* Inter-phylum HGT has shaped the metabolism of many mesophilic and anaerobic bacteria – Alejandro Caro-Quintero and Konstantinos T Konstantinidis – ISME Journal

“Here, we devised a novel bioinformatic pipeline, which minimized the effect of over-representation of specific taxa in the available databases and other limitations of homology-based approaches by analyzing genomes in standardized triplets, to quantify gene exchange between bacterial genomes representing different phyla. “

* Origins of major archaeal clades correspond to gene acquisitions from bacteria
Shijulal Nelson-Sathi – Nature

“To investigate the origin of higher taxa in archaea, we have determined gene distributions and gene phylogenies for the 267,568 protein-coding genes of 134 sequenced archaeal genomes in the context of their homologues from 1,847 reference bacterial genomes.”

Evidence of Carbon Fixation Pathway in a Bacterium from Candidate Phylum SBR1093 Revealed with Genomic Analysis – Zhiping Wang – PLOS ONE

“A phylogenetic analysis based on the 16S rRNA gene reveals that the phylotypes within candidate phylum SBR1093 are primarily clustered into 5 clades with a shallow branching pattern. “

Metagenomic Approach Reveals Variation of Microbes with Arsenic and Antimony Metabolism Genes from Highly Contaminated Soil – Jinming Luo – PLOS ONE

“Metagenomic analysis revealed that microbes from 18 phyla were present in the 5 samples of soil contaminated with high As and Sb.”

More microbiology

* The Phylogeny of Everything, the Origin of Eukaryotes, and the Rules of Taxonomy: Death to Archaea, Bacteria, and Eucarya! Long live Archaebacteria, Eubacteria, Eukaryota, and Prokaryota! – Judge Starling

“The molecular revelation based on orthologous ribosomal RNA sequences that prokaryotes are separable into two basic taxa—archaebacteria and eubacteria, and that these two taxa are approximately equidistant from eukaryotes, prompted Woese et al. (1990) to come up with a tripartite taxonomy of all life forms.”

Adhesion as a weapon in microbial competition – Jonas Schluter – ISME Journal

“We test the predictions of our model using the enteric pathogen Vibrio cholerae, which produces an extracellular matrix important for biofilm formation. “

Microbes in the news:

* Google Hangout on Friday: MicroSeminar: A new way of doing conferences – Pat Schloss

“You will not see HMP Girl, no quotes of specious statistics, no mention of obscure disease, and no venturing into the weeds of bioinformatics. I will be describing unpublished experiments from the lab where we have taken various sources of microorganisms and used them to colonize mice that lack their own microbiota.”

‘Grapes of Wrath’: Stomping out grape disease one vineyard at a time – Phys.org

“A Rochester Institute of Technology scientist and an RIT alumnus are close to completing the genetic blueprint, or microbiome, of grape crown gall tumor disease—the bane of vineyards worldwide. ”

Redefining Human: The Microbiome Documentary Series – Root House Studio – Kickstarter

“We know science documentaries can be painfully boring, so Redefining Human will use a variety of new techniques to turn this complex science into an informative and entertaining documentary series.”

What’s in my microbiome? – Richard Sprague

“To find out what’s in my microbiome now, I bought a $400 kit from the San Francisco company uBiome. “

Science, publishing and career

* Rise of the Rest: The Growing Impact of Non-Elite Journals – Anurag Acharya – Google / Arxiv

“Our analysis indicates that the number of top-1000 papers published in non-elite journals for the representative subject category went from 149 in 1995 to 245 in 2013, a growth of 64%.”

Review rewards – Welcome efforts are being made to recognize academics who give up their time to peer review – Nature Editorial

“A welcome movement is under way to publicly register and recognize the hitherto invisible efforts of referees.”

Overqualified or underqualified? – Carrie Arnold – Science

“As unemployment stretched from weeks into months, Milstein decided that her Ph.D. was working against her. “

 

Satire: Facebook Offers To Freeze Female Employee’s Newborn Children – The Onion

“Women deserve to have the option to postpone motherhood until they feel fully prepared, which is why Facebook will also cover the cryonic facility’s annual maintenance costs for as many years as our employees feel they need. “

Bik’s Picks

360-Degree View of the Tomato – Anna Azvolinsky – The Scientist

“Researchers have sequenced 360 varieties of the tomato plant to create a comprehensive map of the evolution of the fruit from its wild form to the modern varieties. “

Extinct giant kangaroos didn’t hop, they walked – Andy Coghlan – New Scientist

“They had faces like rabbits and some were 2 metres tall. But now it seems that an extinct giant kangaroo didn’t hop – it walked.“

 

Chimpanzees have favorite ‘tool set’ for hunting staple food of army ants – Science Daily

“New research shows that chimpanzees search for the right tools from a key plant species when preparing to ‘ant dip’ — a crafty technique enabling them to feast on army ants without getting bitten. “

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Microbiome digest, October 13, 2014

Preterm infant gut microbiome, fecal transplants, microbes in space, and microbiome of 8 different fish species.

Pregnancy and birth

* Development of the preterm infant gut microbiome: a research priority – Maureen W Groer (Jack Gilbert lab) – Microbiome

“This review provides a synthesis of our understanding of the normal development of the infant gut microbiome and contrasts this with dysbiotic development in the VLBW infant.”

Fluorescence in situ hybridization for identification of microorganisms in acute chorioamnionitis – D. Schmiedel – Clinical Microbiology and Infection

“Using a diagnostic fluorescence in situ hybridization probe panel, we visualized Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus mitis group in two cases of acute chorioamnionitis. “

The Role of Mycoplasma and Ureaplasma in Adverse Pregnancy Outcomes – Amy P. Murtha – Obstetrics and Gynecology Clinics of North America

* Impact Of Lifestyle On The Gut Microbiota Of Healthy Infants And Their Mothers – The Aladdin Birth Cohort – Helena Marell Hesla – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“Samples collected from infants at ages six days, three weeks, two months and six months and from their mothers before and after delivery, respectively, were analyzed using 454-pyrosequencing.”

Human gut microbiome

* Oral, Capsulized, Frozen Fecal Microbiota Transplantation for Relapsing Clostridium difficile Infection – Ilan Youngster – JAMA

“Self-ranked health scores improved significantly on a scale of 1 to 10 from a median of 5  for overall health and 4.5  for gastrointestinal-specific health on the day prior to FMT to 8 after FMT administration for both overall and gastrointestinal health (P = .001).”

* Impact of Experimental Hookworm Infection on the Human Gut Microbiota – Cinzia Cantacessi – Journal of Infectious Diseases

“We used 16S rRNA gene amplification and pyrosequencing to characterize, for the first time to our knowledge, the differences in composition and relative abundance of fecal microbial communities in human subjects prior to and following experimental infection with the blood-feeding intestinal hookworm, Necator americanus. “

Genomics of schizophrenia: time to consider the gut microbiome? – T G Dinan – Molecular Psychiatry

“To date, this vast quantity of DNA has been largely ignored in schizophrenia research.”

Animal microbiome

Comparative study on gastrointestinal microbiota of eight fish species with different feeding habits – Jinjin Li – Journal of Applied Microbiology

“The V1 to V3 regions of 16S rRNA gene were analyzed by highthroughput sequencing (454 platform) to compare the gut microbiota of different fish species. “

Dining local: the microbial diet of a snail that grazes microbial communities is geographically structured – Richard O’Rorke – Environmental Microbiology

“we collected 102 snail fecal samples as a proxy for diet, and 102 matched-leaf samples from four locations. We used Illumina amplicon sequencing to determine bacterial and fungal community composition. “

Bacterial associates of seed-parasitic wasps (Hymenoptera: Megastigmus) – Amber R Paulson – BMC Microbiology

“We characterized the bacterial symbionts of Megastigmus (Hymenoptera: Torymidae), a lineage of seed-parasitic chalcid wasps, with the goal of identifying microbes that might play an important role in aiding development within seeds, including supplementing insect nutrition or manipulating host trees.“

Bioreactor microbiome

Biofouling and Microbial Communities in Membrane Distillation and Reverse Osmosis – Katherine R. Zodrow – Environmental Science & Technology

“Phylogenetic analysis using next-generation sequencing of 16S ribosomal DNA showed significant shifts in the microbial communities. “

Integrated ‘omics analysis for studying the microbial community response to a pH perturbation of a cellulose-degrading bioreactor culture – Amy A Boaro – FEMS Microbiology Ecology

“16S rDNA pyrosequencing results revealed increased alpha diversity in the microbial community after the perturbation, and a persistence of the dominant community members over the duration of the experiment.”

Environmental microbiome

Effects of Bioavailable Heavy Metal Species, Arsenic, and Acid Drainage from Mine Tailings on a Microbial Community Sampled Along a Pollution Gradient in a Freshwater Ecosystem – Togwell A. Jackson – Geomicrobiology Journal

“Ribosomal ribonucleic acid, fatty acid, and phospholipid analyses, along with assays of CO2 production, denitrification, and enzyme activities, were performed to characterise the microflora; and environmental conditions were defined by various physicochemical analyses, including determination of bioavailable metal species. “

The role of macrobiota in structuring microbial communities along rocky shores – Catherine A Pfister​, Jack A Gilbert, Sean M Gibbons – PeerJ

“At two coastal locations in the northeast Pacific Ocean, we show that microbial composition was significantly different between inert surfaces, the biogenic surfaces that included rocky shore animals and an alga, and the water column plankton.”

Microbes in (simulated) space

The development and succession of microbial communities in 90-day Bioregenerative Life Support Experiment in the Lunar Palace 1 – Yi Sun – 40th COSPAR Scientific Assembly

“In this study, the development and succession of the microbial communities of air, water system, plant system, and key facilities surfaces in Lunar Palace 1 were continuously monitored and analyzed by using plate counting method and molecular biological method during the 90-day experiment.”

The viability of native microbial communities in martian environment (model) – Vorobyova, Elena – 40th COSPAR Scientific Assembly

“It was shown that in simulated conditions close to the parameters of the Martian regolith, the diversity of natural bacterial communities was not decreased, and in some cases the activation of some bacterial populations occurred in situ.”

Food microbiology

Microbial succession and the functional potential during the fermentation of Chinese soy sauce brine – Joanita Sulaiman – Frontiers in Microbiology

“Whole genome shotgun (WGS) method revealed that the fermentation brine was dominated by the bacterial genus Weissella and later dominated by the fungal genus Candida.”

Transcriptomics/metagenomics

Adaptation to environmental factors shapes the organization of regulatory regions in microbial communities – Leyden Fernandez – BMC Genomics

“We have here characterized and analyzed the metaregulome of three different environments, as well as their impact in the adaptation to particular variable physico-chemical conditions. “

Other microbiology

Inverse Correlation Between Helicobacter pylori Colonization and Obesity in a Cohort of Inner City Children – Hanh D. Vo – Helicobacter

“Our findings in a North American cohort are in agreement with studies from Asia and Europe suggesting that H. pylori infection decreases the prevalence of obesity in children.”

Microbes in the news

* Podcast: Your Home, Your Bacteria – Science Friday

“Jack Gilbert… is trying to develop a better understanding of the way people, bacteria, and the environment around them interact, from the kitchen floor to the greater Chicago area.”

Landmark Crohn’s Microbiome Study Yields Important Findings – David Wild – GastroEndoNews

“The association suggests that there is a potential link between the presence of these microbes and the serologic biomarkers, but that needs to be determined in future studies,” said Dr. Xavier, who presented the study at Digestive Disease Week 2014”

Is that how the capsules will look like? Good news: You can take your fecal transplants orally – Rachel Feltman – Washington Post

“In a study published Saturday in the Journal of the American Medical Association, researchers report that the same success rate can be reached by processing the healthy excrement into capsules and administering the pills by mouth.“

Probiotics on the brain: A growing number of scientists now believe that gut bacteria can influence mental health – Elizabeth Gehrman – Boston Globe

“Whenever someone says there’s an impossibility in medicine,” says Williams, “they end up being corrected in a few years.”

Unravelling the link between gut bacteria and horse health – University of Surrey

“Researchers at the University of Surrey, in collaboration with colleagues from Reading and Liverpool universities, have been awarded £100,000 funding by Petplan Charitable Trust… to create a laboratory model of the horse’s hindgut.”

The Second Brain: Gut Bacteria Control Human Behavior to Get the Best Nutrients – David Gutierrez – Epoch Times

“Bacteria within the gut are manipulative,” researcher Carlo Maley, PhD, said. “There is a diversity of interests represented in the microbiome, some aligned with our own dietary goals, and others not.”

Science, publishing, career

Sometimes My Job Seems Like a Secret – Amy Davidson – Speaking Of Research

“You are going to hell.” “You are a horrible person.” “We cannot be friends anymore.”

Sell yourself: Adding substance to your personal statement – Brian Rybarczyk – Science Careers at Science Magazine

“Obtaining feedback on your personal statement (or any piece of writing) can be intimidating, but feedback is essential for creating a polished and readable document.”

Bik’s Picks

Why Orange Juice Tastes Disgusting After You Brush Your Teeth: Finally, an answer – Sarah Fecht – Popular Science

“In a handy video, the American Chemical Society has explained why orange juice (and food in general) tastes like soap after you brush your teeth. “

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Non-human microbiome digest, October 7, 2014

Weaning piglets, fungus-farming termites, mosquito larval stages, antibiotic resistant bacteria in soil after fertilization, and biogeography of marine microbiomes.

Mammal microbiome

Assessment of fecal bacterial diversity among healthy piglets during the weaning transition – Edward Alain B. Pajarillo – Journal of General and Applied Microbiology

“This study describes the fecal microbial shifts of healthy piglets during the weaning transition using barcoded pyrosequencing of the prokaryotic 16S rRNA gene.”

Insect microbiome

Complementary symbiont contributions to plant decomposition in a fungus-farming termite – Michael Poulsen – PNAS USA

“We analyzed the genomic potential for biomass decomposition in a farming termite, its fungal symbiont, and its bacterial gut communities. “

Composition of Anopheles coluzzii and Anopheles gambiae microbiota from larval to adult stages – Geoffrey Gimonneau – Infection, Genetics and Evolution

“We characterized bacterial communities from aquatic habitats, at surface microlayer and subsurface water levels, to freshly emerge adult mosquitoes using multiplexed 16S rRNA gene pyrosequencing”

Soil microbiome

From the Handelsman lab: Bloom of resident antibiotic-resistant bacteria in soil following manure fertilization – Nikolina Udikovic-Kolic – PNAS USA

“In this study, we found that dairy cow manure amendment enhanced the proliferation of resident antibiotic-resistant bacteria and genes encoding β-lactamases in soil even though the cows from which the manure was derived had not been treated with antibiotics. “

Niche-Partitioning of Edaphic Microbial Communities in the Namib Desert Gravel Plain Fairy Circles – Jean-Baptiste Ramond – PLOS ONE

“T-RFLP fingerprinting of the bacterial (16S rRNA gene) and fungal (ITS region) communities, in parallel with two-way crossed ANOSIM, showed that FC communities were significantly different to those of external control vegetated soil”

Temporal Changes in Soil Bacterial Diversity and Humic Substances Degradation in Subarctic Tundra Soil – Ha Ju Park – Microbial Ecology

“Culture-independent microbial community analysis showed that during the microcosm experiments, the relative abundance of phyla Proteobacteria (bacteria) and Euryarchaeota (archaea) largely increased, indicating their involvement in HS degradation. “

Water microbiome

Distinct patterns of marine bacterial communities in the South and North Pacific Oceans – Sung-Suk Suh – Journal of Microbiology

“In this study, 16S rRNA gene tag pyrosequencing was used to investigate change in bacterial community structure between summer and winter water masses from Gosung Bay in the South Sea of Korea and Chuuk in Micronesia, located in the North and South Pacific Oceans, respectively.”

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