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Barbora Pafčo, Zuzana Tehlárová, Kateřina Jirků Pomajbíková, Angelique Todd, Hideo Hasegawa, Klára J Petrželková, David Modrý
Infectious diseases including those caused by parasites can be a major threat to the conservation of endangered species. There is thus a great need for studies describing parasite infections of these species in the wild. Here we present data on parasite diversity in an agile mangabey (Cercocebus agilis) group in Bai Hokou, Dzanga-Sangha Protected Areas (DSPA), Central African Republic. We coproscopically analyzed 140 mangabey fecal samples by concentration techniques (flotation and sedimentation). Agile mangabeys hosted a broad diversity of protistan parasites/commensals, namely amoebas (Entamoeba spp...
January 19, 2018: American Journal of Primatology
Antonio M Martin-Platero, Brian Cleary, Kathryn Kauffman, Sarah P Preheim, Dennis J McGillicuddy, Eric J Alm, Martin F Polz
Because microbial plankton in the ocean comprise diverse bacteria, algae, and protists that are subject to environmental forcing on multiple spatial and temporal scales, a fundamental open question is to what extent these organisms form ecologically cohesive communities. Here we show that although all taxa undergo large, near daily fluctuations in abundance, microbial plankton are organized into clearly defined communities whose turnover is rapid and sharp. We analyze a time series of 93 consecutive days of coastal plankton using a technique that allows inference of communities as modular units of interacting taxa by determining positive and negative correlations at different temporal frequencies...
January 18, 2018: Nature Communications
Akinori Yabuki, Ken-Ichiro Ishida
Quadricilia rotundata is a heterotrophic flagellate with four flagella. However, because this species has no clear morphological characteristics or molecular data affiliating it with any known group, Q. rotundata has been treated as a protist incertae sedis, for a long time. Here, we established a clonal culture of Q. rotundata and sequenced its 18S rDNA sequence. Molecular phylogenetic analysis successfully placed Q. rotundata in an environmental clade within Cercozoa, which contributes to expand the morphological and species diversity within Cercozoa...
January 18, 2018: Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology
Estefania Calvo Alvarez, Christelle Cren-Travaillé, Aline Crouzols, Brice Rotureau
Trypanosomiases and leishmaniases, caused by a group of related protist parasites, are Neglected Tropical Diseases currently threatening >500 million people worldwide. Reporter proteins have revolutionised the research on infectious diseases and have opened up new advances in the understanding of trypanosomatid-borne diseases in terms of both biology, pathogenesis and drug development. Here, we describe the generation and some applications of a new chimeric triple reporter fusion protein combining the red-shifted firefly luciferase PpyREH9 and the tdTomato red fluorescent protein, fused by the TY1 tag...
January 12, 2018: Infection, Genetics and Evolution
Emma L Betts, Eleni Gentekaki, Adele Thomasz, Vicki Breakell, Angus I Carpenter, Anastasios D Tsaousis
Blastocystis is an anaerobic protist, commonly inhabiting the intestinal tract of both humans and other animals. Blastocystis is extremely diverse comprising 17 genetically distinct subtypes in mammals and birds. Pathogenicity of this enteric microbe is currently disputed and knowledge regarding its distribution, diversity and zoonotic potential is fragmentary. Most research has focused on Blastocystis from primates, while sampling from other animals remains limited. Herein, we investigated the prevalence and distribution of Blastocystis in animals held within a conservation park in South East England...
January 17, 2018: Parasitology
Djamel Baroudi, Hongwei Zhang, Said Amer, Djamel Khelef, Dawn M Roellig, Yuanfei Wang, Yaoyu Feng, Lihua Xiao
Little information is available on the occurrence of the zoonotic protists Cryptosporidium spp. and none on Enterocytozoon bieneusi in camels. This preliminary study was conducted to examine the identity of Cryptosporidium subtypes and E. bieneusi genotypes in dromedary camels in Algeria. A total of 39 fecal specimens were collected from young camels. PCR-sequence analysis of the small subunit rRNA was used to detect and genotype Cryptosporidium spp. Cryptosporidium parvum present was further subtyped by sequence analysis of the 60 kDa glycoprotein gene...
January 6, 2018: Parasitology Research
Stephen J Taerum, Francesca De Martini, Jürgen Liebig, Gillian H Gile
Coevolution is a major driver of speciation in many host-associated symbionts. In the termite-protist digestive symbiosis, the protists are vertically inherited by anal feeding among nest mates. Lower termites (all termite families except Termitidae) and their symbionts have broadly co-diversified over ~170 million yr. However, this inference is based mainly on the restricted distribution of certain protist genera to certain termite families. With the exception of one study, which demonstrated congruent phylogenies for the protist Pseudotrichonympha and its Rhinotermitidae hosts, coevolution in this symbiosis has not been investigated with molecular methods...
January 6, 2018: Environmental Entomology
Binnypreet Kaur, Matus Valach, Priscila Peña-Diaz, Sandrine Moreira, Patrick J Keeling, Gertraud Burger, Julius Lukeš, Drahomíra Faktorová
Diplonema papillatum is the type species of diplonemids, which are among the most abundant and diverse heterotrophic micro-eukaryotes in the world's oceans. Diplonemids are also known for a unique form of post-transcriptional processing in mitochondria. However, the lack of reverse genetics methodologies in these protists has hampered elucidation of their cell and molecular biology. Here we report a protocol for D. papillatum transformation. We have identified several antibiotics to which D. papillatum is sensitive and thus are suitable selectable markers, and focus in particular on puromycin...
January 10, 2018: Environmental Microbiology
Ayaz Anwar, Naveed Ahmed Khan, Ruqaiyyah Siddiqui
Acanthamoeba spp. are protist pathogens and causative agents of serious infections including keratitis and granulomatous amoebic encephalitis. Its ability to convert into dormant and highly resistant cysts form limits effectiveness of available therapeutic agents and presents a pivotal challenge for drug development. During the cyst stage, Acanthamoeba is protected by the presence of hardy cyst walls, comprised primarily of carbohydrates and cyst-specific proteins, hence synthesis inhibition and/or degradation of cyst walls is of major interest...
January 9, 2018: Parasites & Vectors
Sandra Specht, Linda Liedgens, Margarida Duarte, Alexandra Stiegler, Ulrike Wirth, Maike Eberhardt, Ana Tomás, Kai Hell, Marcel Deponte
Mia40/CHCHD4 and Erv1/ALR are essential for oxidative protein folding in the mitochondrial intermembrane space of yeast and mammals. In contrast, many protists, including important apicomplexan and kinetoplastid parasites, lack Mia40. Furthermore, the Erv homolog of the model parasite Leishmania tarentolae (LtErv) was shown to be incompatible with Saccharomyces cerevisiae Mia40 (ScMia40). Here we addressed structure-function relationships of ScErv1 and LtErv as well as their compatibility with the oxidative protein folding system in yeast using chimeric, truncated, and mutant Erv constructs...
December 23, 2017: Redox Biology
Yunhan Hsu, Hirohiko Koizumi, Masato Otagiri, Shigeharu Moriya, Manabu Arioka
Symbiotic protists in the hindgut of termites provide a novel enzymatic resource for efficient lignocellulytic degradation of plant biomass. In this study, two β-mannanases, RsMan26A and RsMan26B, from a symbiotic protist community of the lower termite, Reticulitermes speratus, were successfully expressed in the methylotrophic yeast, Pichia pastoris. Biochemical characterization experiments demonstrated that both RsMan26A and RsMan26B are endo-acting enzymes and have a very similar substrate specificity, displaying a higher catalytic efficiency to galactomannan from locust bean gum (LBG) and glucomannan than to β-1,4-mannan and highly substituted galactomannan from guar gum...
January 5, 2018: Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
Kyle W Bender, Raymond E Zielinski, Steven C Huber
Calcium (Ca2+) serves as a universal second messenger in eukaryotic signal transduction. Understanding the Ca2+ activation kinetics of Ca2+ sensors is critical to understanding the cellular signaling mechanisms involved. In this review, we discuss the regulatory properties of two sensor classes: the Ca2+-dependent protein kinases (CPKs/CDPKs) and the calcineurin B-like (CBL) proteins that control the activity of CBL-interacting protein kinases (CIPKs) and identify emerging topics and some foundational points that are not well established experimentally...
January 5, 2018: Biochemical Journal
Karyna Rosario, Noah Fierer, Shelly Lynn Miller, Julia Luongo, Mya Breitbart
Diverse bacterial and fungal communities inhabit human-occupied buildings and circulate in indoor air; however, viral diversity in these man-made environments remains largely unknown. Here we investigated DNA and RNA viruses circulating in the air of twelve university dormitory rooms by analyzing dust accumulated over a one-year period on heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) filters. A high-throughput metagenomic sequencing approach was used to determine the identity and diversity of viral particles extracted from the HVAC filters...
January 3, 2018: Environmental Science & Technology
Iskander M Ibrahim, Liang Wang, Sujith Puthiyaveetil, Norbert Krauß, Jon Nield, John F Allen
Two-component signal transduction systems (TCSs) consist of sensor histidine kinases and response regulators. TCSs mediate adaptation to environmental changes in bacteria, plants, fungi and protists. Histidine kinase 2 (Hik2) is a sensor histidine kinase found in all known cyanobacteria and as chloroplast sensor kinase in eukaryotic algae and plants. Sodium ions have been shown to inhibit the autophosphorylation activity of Hik2 with precedes phosphoryl transfer to response regulators, but the mechanism of inhibition has not been determined...
December 30, 2017: Protoplasma
Allison M Tracy, Ernesto Weil, C Drew Harvell
Co-infection is the reality in natural populations, but few studies incorporate the players that matter in the wild. We integrate the environment, host demography, two parasites, and host immunity in a study of co-infection to determine the drivers of parasite interactions. Here, we use an ecologically important Caribbean sea fan octocoral, Gorgonia ventalina, that is co-infected by a copepod and a labyrinthulid protist. We first expanded upon laboratory studies by showing that immune suppression is associated with the labyrinthulid in a natural setting...
December 26, 2017: Oecologia
Hui Wang, Ruoyu Guo, Jang-Seu Ki
Endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) have toxic effects on algae; however, their molecular genomic responses have not been sufficiently elucidated. Here, we evaluated genome-scaled responses of the dinoflagellate alga Prorocentrum minimum exposed to an EDC, polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB), using a 6.0 K microarray. Based on two-fold change cut-off, we identified that 609 genes (∼10.2%) responded to the PCB treatment. KEGG pathway analysis showed that differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were related to ribosomes, biosynthesis of amino acids, spliceosomes, and cellular processes...
December 14, 2017: Chemosphere
Wonsik Mun, Heeun Kwon, Hansol Im, Seong Yeol Choi, Ajay K Monnappa, Robert J Mitchell
Predation of Chromobacterium piscinae by Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus HD100 was inhibited in dilute nutrient broth (DNB) but not in HEPES. Experiments showed that the effector responsible was present in the medium, as cell-free supernatants retained the ability to inhibit predation, and that the effector was not toxic to B. bacteriovorus Violacein, a bisindole secondary metabolite produced by C. piscinae, was not responsible. Further characterization of C. piscinae found that this species produces sufficient concentrations of cyanide (202 µM) when grown in DNB to inhibit the predatory activity of B...
December 19, 2017: MBio
Jian-Ming Huang, Chen-Chieh Liao, Chung-Ching Kuo, Lih-Ren Chen, Lynn L H Huang, Jyh-Wei Shin, Wei-Chen Lin
Acanthamoeba is free-living protist pathogen capable of causing a blinding keratitis and granulomatous encephalitis. However, the mechanisms of Acanthamoeba pathogenesis are still not clear. Here, our results show that cells co-cultured with pathogenic Acanthamoeba would be spherical and floated, even without contacting the protists. Then, the Acanthamoeba protists would contact and engulf these cells. In order to clarify the contact-independent pathogenesis mechanism in Acanthamoeba, we collected the Acanthamoeba-secreted proteins (Asp) to incubate with cells for identifying the extracellular virulent factors and investigating the cytotoxicity process...
December 18, 2017: Molecules: a Journal of Synthetic Chemistry and Natural Product Chemistry
Christine A Nalepa
Subsocial wood feeding cockroaches in the genus Cryptocercus, the sister group of termites, retain their symbiotic gut flagellates during the host molting cycle, but in lower termites, closely related flagellates die prior to host ecdysis. Although the prevalent view is that termite flagellates die because of conditions of starvation and desiccation in the gut during the host molting cycle, the work of L.R. Cleveland in the 1930s through the 1960s provides a strong alternate hypothesis: it was the changed hormonal environment associated with the origin of eusociality and its concomitant shift in termite developmental ontogeny that instigates the death of the flagellates in termites...
December 18, 2017: Microorganisms
Xianzhong Xu, Alexander Eletsky, M Osman Sheikh, James H Prestegard, Christopher M West
Cullin-Ring-Ligases mediate protein polyubiquitination, a signal for degradation in the 26S-proteasome. The CRL1 class consists of Skp1/cullin-1/F-box protein/Rbx1 (SCF) complexes that cyclically associate with ubiquitin-E2 to build the polyubiquitin chain. Within the SCF complex, the 162-amino acid DdSkp1 from Dictyostelium bridges cullin-1 with an F-box protein (FBP), the specificity factor for substrate selection. The hydroxylation-dependent glycosylation of Pro143 of DdSkp1 by a pentasaccharide forms the basis of a novel O2-sensing mechanism in the social amoeba Dictyostelium and other protists...
December 18, 2017: Biochemistry
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