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Brandon J Varela, David Lesbarrères, Roberto Ibáñez, David M Green
Research on the amphibian skin microbiota has focused on identifying bacterial taxa that deter a pathogenic chytrid fungus, and on describing patterns of microbiota variation. However, it remains unclear how environmental variation affects amphibian skin bacterial communities, and whether the overall functional diversity of the amphibian skin microbiota is associated to such variation. We sampled skin microbial communities from one dendrobatoid frog species across an environmental gradient along the Panama Canal, and from three dendrobatoid frog species before and after the onset of the wet season in one site...
2018: Frontiers in Microbiology
Anthony W Waddle, Marlai Sai, Joshua E Levy, Ghazal Rezaei, Frank van Breukelen, Jef R Jaeger
We developed a protocol for isolating the amphibian chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) from anurans. We sampled skin tissues from 2 common treefrogs, Pseudacris regilla and P. triseriata, collected from populations with high infection prevalence. We sampled tissues from 3 anatomical ventral regions (thigh, abdomen, and foot) where the pathogen is thought to concentrate. To mitigate potential bacterial contamination, we used a unique combination of 4 antibiotics. We quantified infections on frogs as zoospore equivalents (ZE) using a swabbing approach combined with quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction...
March 5, 2018: Diseases of Aquatic Organisms
Sina Schorn, Heribert Cypionka
Achromatium is the largest freshwater bacterium known to date and easily recognised by conspicuous calcite bodies filling the cell volume. Members of this genus are highly abundant in diverse aquatic sediments and may account for up to 90% of the bacterial biovolume in the oxic-anoxic interfaces. The high abundance implies that Achromatium is either rapidly growing or hardly prone to predation. As Achromatium is still uncultivated and does not appear to grow fast, one could assume that the cells might escape predation by their unusual shape and composition...
February 28, 2018: Microbial Ecology
Annemarieke Spitzen-van der Sluijs, Gwij Stegen, Sergé Bogaerts, Stefano Canessa, Sebastian Steinfartz, Nico Janssen, Wilbert Bosman, Frank Pasmans, An Martel
Lack of disease spill-over between adjacent populations has been associated with habitat fragmentation and the absence of population connectivity. We here present a case which describes the absence of the spill-over of the chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bsal) between two connected subpopulations of fire salamanders (Salamandra salamandra). Based on neutrally evolving microsatellite loci, both subpopulations were shown to form a single genetic cluster, suggesting a shared origin and/or recent gene flow...
February 28, 2018: Scientific Reports
Ramsy Agha, Alina Gross, Melanie Gerphagnon, Thomas Rohrlack, Justyna Wolinska
Understanding how individual parasite traits contribute to overall fitness, and how they are modulated by both external and host environment, is crucial for predicting disease outcome. Fungal (chytrid) parasites of phytoplankton are important yet poorly studied pathogens with the potential to modulate the abundance and composition of phytoplankton communities and to drive their evolution. Here, we studied life-history traits of a chytrid parasite infecting the planktonic, bloom-forming cyanobacterium Planktothrix spp...
February 26, 2018: Parasitology
Sergey A Karpov, Purificación López-García, Maria A Mamkaeva, Vladimir I Klimov, Andrey E Vishnyakov, Victoria S Tcvetkova, David Moreira
Fungi encompass, in addition to classically well-studied lineages, an ever-expanding diversity of poorly known lineages including zoosporic chytrid-like parasites. Here, we formally describe Amoeboradix gromovi gen. et sp. nov. comprising a set of closely related strains of chytrid-like parasites of the yellow-green alga Tribonema gayanum unusually endowed with amoeboid zoospores. Morphological and ultrastructural features of A. gromovi observed by light and transmission electron microscopy recall previous descriptions of Rhizophydium anatropum...
November 21, 2017: Protist
Pieter T J Johnson, Dana M Calhoun, Amber N Stokes, Calvin B Susbilla, Travis McDevitt-Galles, Cheryl J Briggs, Jason T Hoverman, Vasyl V Tkach, Jacobus C de Roode
1.Classical research on animal toxicity has focused on the role of toxins in protection against predators, but recent studies suggest these same compounds can offer a powerful defense against parasites and infectious diseases. 2.Newts in the genus Taricha are brightly colored and contain the potent neurotoxin, tetrodotoxin (TTX), which is hypothesized to have evolved as a defense against vertebrate predators such as garter snakes. However, newt populations often vary dramatically in toxicity, which is only partially explained by predation pressure...
February 24, 2018: Journal of Animal Ecology
(no author information available yet)
The emerging infectious disease chytridiomycosis, caused by the fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis , is thought to affect over 500 amphibian species worldwide. But, as Georgina Mills explains, new research has now shed light on what could make some individuals more susceptible.
February 24, 2018: Veterinary Record
Emily A Wilson, Cheryl J Briggs, Tom L Dudley
Amphibian species are experiencing population declines due to infection by the fungal pathogen, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd). The African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis), an asymptomatic carrier of Bd, has been implicated in the spread of this pathogen through global trade and established invasive populations on several continents. However, research has not explored the relationships of both life stages of this amphibian with Bd. While the post-metamorphic individuals may act as a reservoir, spreading the infection to susceptible species, the filter-feeding larvae may consume the motile Bd zoospores from the water column, potentially reducing pathogen abundance and thus the likelihood of infection...
2018: PloS One
Matilda Haraldsson, Mélanie Gerphagnon, Pauline Bazin, Jonathan Colombet, Samuele Tecchio, Télesphore Sime-Ngando, Nathalie Niquil
Parasites exist in every ecosystem and can have large influence on food web structure and function, yet, we know little about parasites' effect on food web dynamics. Here we investigate the role of microbial parasitism (viruses of bacteria, phytoplankton and cyanobacteria, and parasitic chytrids on cyanobacteria) on the dynamics of trophic pathways and food web functioning during a cyanobacteria bloom, using linear inverse food web modeling parameterized with a 2-month long data set (biomasses, infection parameters, etc...
February 7, 2018: ISME Journal
Joice Ruggeri, Sergio Potsch Carvalho-E-Silva, Timothy Y James, Luís Felipe Toledo
Amphibians suffer from a number of factors that make them the most threatened group of vertebrates. One threat is the fungal disease chytridiomycosis caused by the emerging pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), which has rapidly spread and caused the loss of massive amphibian biodiversity worldwide. Recently, Bd was associated with a few amphibian population declines and extinctions in some areas of the Brazilian Atlantic Forest. However, the mechanisms underlying such declines are not fully understood...
January 31, 2018: Diseases of Aquatic Organisms
Jean P Elbers, Mary B Brown, Sabrina S Taylor
BACKGROUND: Infectious disease is the single greatest threat to taxa such as amphibians (chytrid fungus), bats (white nose syndrome), Tasmanian devils (devil facial tumor disease), and black-footed ferrets (canine distemper virus, plague). Although understanding the genetic basis to disease susceptibility is important for the long-term persistence of these groups, most research has been limited to major-histocompatibility and Toll-like receptor genes. To better understand the genetic basis of infectious disease susceptibility in a species of conservation concern, we sequenced all known/predicted immune response genes (i...
January 19, 2018: BMC Genomics
Elisabeth Fitzek, Archi Joardar, Ramesh Gupta, Matt Geisler
In archaea, pseudouridine (Ψ) synthase Pus10 modifies uridine (U) to Ψ at positions 54 and 55 of tRNA. In contrast, Pus10 is not found in bacteria, where modifications at those two positions are carried out by TrmA (U54 to m5U54) and TruB (U55 to Ψ55). Many eukaryotes have an apparent redundancy; their genomes contain orthologs of archaeal Pus10 and bacterial TrmA and TruB. Although eukaryal Pus10 genes share a conserved catalytic domain with archaeal Pus10 genes, their biological roles are not clear for the two reasons...
January 18, 2018: Journal of Molecular Evolution
Alexandra M Bettina, Georgia Doing, Kelsey O'Brien, Gabriel G Perron, Brooke A Jude
Investigation of the Hudson Valley watershed reveals many violacein-producing bacteria. These are of interest for their biotherapeutic potential in treating chytrid infections of amphibians. The draft whole-genome sequences for seven Janthinobacterium isolates with a variety of phenotypes are provided in this study.
January 18, 2018: Genome Announcements
Quintin Lau, Takeshi Igawa, Ryuhei Minei, Tiffany A Kosch, Yoko Satta
BACKGROUND: In Japan and East Asia, endemic frogs appear to be tolerant or not susceptible to chytridiomycosis, a deadly amphibian disease caused by the chytrid fungus Batrachochytridium dendrobatidis (Bd). Japanese frogs may have evolved mechanisms of immune resistance to pathogens such as Bd. This study characterizes immune genes expressed in various tissues of healthy Japanese Rana frogs. RESULTS: We generated transcriptome data sets of skin, spleen and blood from three adult Japanese Ranidae frogs (Japanese brown frog Rana japonica, the montane brown frog Rana ornativentris, and Tago's brown frog Rana tagoi tagoi) as well as whole body of R...
December 28, 2017: BMC Genomics
Jordan G Kueneman, Sophie Weiss, Valerie J McKenzie
Global amphibian decline linked to fungal pathogens has galvanized research on applied amphibian conservation. Skin-associated bacterial communities of amphibians have been shown to mediate fungal skin infections and the development of probiotic treatments with antifungal bacteria has become an emergent area of research. While exploring the role of protective bacteria has been a primary focus for amphibian conservation, we aim to expand and study the other microbes present in amphibian skin communities including fungi and other micro-eukaryotes...
2017: Frontiers in Microbiology
Rachael E Antwis, Xavier A Harrison
Symbiotic bacterial communities can protect their hosts from infection by pathogens. Treatment of wild individuals with protective bacteria (probiotics) isolated from hosts can combat the spread of emerging infectious diseases. However, it is unclear whether candidate probiotic bacteria can offer consistent protection across multiple isolates of globally distributed pathogens. Here, we use the lethal amphibian fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis to investigate whether probiotic richness (number of bacteria) or genetic distance among consortia members influences broad-scale in vitro inhibitory capabilities of probiotics across multiple isolates of the pathogen...
December 8, 2017: Molecular Ecology
Andréa F C Mesquita, Carolina Lambertini, Mariana Lyra, Leo R Malagoli, Timothy Y James, Luís Felipe Toledo, Célio F B Haddad, C Guilherme Becker
Host-generalist pathogens sporadically infect naive hosts, potentially triggering epizootics. The waterborne fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) is linked to declines of hundreds of amphibian species with aquatic larvae. Although several population declines and extinctions attributed to Bd have been reported among cryptic species undergoing direct development away from water, epidemiological studies focused on these terrestrial frogs are lacking. Our field data support that terrestrial direct-developing hosts are less exposed to Bd during their ontogeny than species with aquatic larvae, and thus they might lack adaptive responses against waterborne chytrids...
November 30, 2017: Scientific Reports
Angela K Burrow, Samantha L Rumschlag, Michelle D Boone
Understanding factors that influence host-pathogen interactions is key to predicting outbreaks in natural systems experiencing environmental change. Many amphibian population declines have been attributed to an amphibian chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis ( Bd ). While this fungus is widespread, not all Bd- positive populations have been associated with declines, which could be attributed to differences in pathogen virulence or host susceptibility. In a laboratory experiment, we examined the effects of Bd isolate origin, two from areas with Bd -associated amphibian population declines (El Copé, Panama, and California, USA) and two from areas without Bd -related population declines (Ohio and Maine, USA), on the terrestrial growth and survival of American toad ( Anaxyrus americanus ) metamorphs reared in larval environments with low or high intraspecific density...
November 2017: Ecology and Evolution
Ting Xiang Neik, Martin J Barbetti, Jacqueline Batley
Brassica napus is an economically important crop across different continents including temperate and subtropical regions in Europe, Canada, South Asia, China and Australia. Its widespread cultivation also brings setbacks as it plays host to fungal, oomycete and chytrid pathogens that can lead to serious yield loss. For sustainable crop production, identification of resistance ( R ) genes in B. napus has become of critical importance. In this review, we discuss four key pathogens affecting Brassica crops: Clubroot ( Plasmodiophora brassicae) , Blackleg ( Leptosphaeria maculans and L...
2017: Frontiers in Plant Science
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