Complete genome sequence of a novel picobirnavirus, otarine picobirnavirus, discovered in California sea lions.
ABSTRACT: We discovered a novel otarine picobirnavirus in fecal samples of California sea lions. Its genome contains a large segment with two open reading frames (ORFs), ORF1 encoding a putative protein of 163 amino acids with unknown function and ORF2 encoding capsid protein, and a small segment with one ORF encoding RNA-dependent RNA polymerase.
Project description:In a molecular epidemiology study using 791 fecal samples collected from different terrestrial and marine mammals in Hong Kong, genogroup I picobirnaviruses (PBVs) were positive by RT-PCR targeting the partial RdRp gene in specimens from five cattle, six monkeys, 17 horses, nine pigs, one rabbit, one dog, and 12 California sea lions, with 11, 9, 23, 17, 1, 1, and 15 sequence types in the positive specimens from the corresponding animals, respectively. Phylogenetic analysis showed that the PBV sequences from each kind of animal were widely distributed in the whole tree with high diversity, sharing 47.4-89.0% nucleotide identities with other genogroup I PBV strains based on the partial RdRp gene. Nine complete segment 1 (viral loads 1.7 × 104 to 5.9 × 106/ml) and 15 segment 2 (viral loads 4.1 × 103 to 1.3 × 106/ml) of otarine PBVs from fecal samples serially collected from California sea lions were sequenced. In the two phylogenetic trees constructed using ORF2 and ORF3 of segment 1, the nine segment 1 sequences were clustered into four distinct clades (C1-C4). In the tree constructed using RdRp gene of segment 2, the 15 segment 2 sequences were clustered into nine distinct clades (R1-R9). In four sea lions, PBVs were detected in two different years, with the same segment 1 clade (C3) present in two consecutive years from one sea lion and different clades present in different years from three sea lions. A high diversity of PBVs was observed in a variety of terrestrial and marine mammals. Multiple sequence types with significant differences, representing multiple strains of PBV, were present in the majority of PBV-positive samples from different kinds of animals.
Project description:Advances in Next Generation Sequencing technologies have enabled the generation of millions of sequences from microorganisms. However, distinguishing the sequence of a novel species from sequencing errors remains a technical challenge when the novel species is highly divergent from the closest known species. To solve such a problem, we developed a new method called Optimistic Protein Assembly from Reads (OPAR). This method is based on the assumption that protein sequences could be more conserved than the nucleotide sequences encoding them. By taking advantage of metagenomics, bioinformatics and conventional Sanger sequencing, our method successfully identified all coding regions of the mouse picobirnavirus for the first time. The salvaged sequences indicated that segment 1 of this virus was more divergent from its homologues in other Picobirnaviridae species than segment 2. For this reason, only segment 2 of mouse picobirnavirus has been detected in previous studies. OPAR web tool is available at http://bioinformatics.czc.hokudai.ac.jp/opar/.
Project description:Herpesviruses have been recognized in marine mammals, but their clinical relevance is not always easy to assess. A novel otarine herpesvirus-3 (OtHV3) was detected in a geriatric California sea lion (Zalophus californianus), and using a newly developed quantitative PCR assay paired with histology, OtHV3 was associated with esophageal ulcers and B cell lymphoblastic lymphoma in this animal. The prevalence and quantities of OtHV3 were then determined among buffy coats from 87 stranded and managed collection sea lions. Stranded sea lions had a higher prevalence of OtHV3 compared to managed collection sea lions (34.9% versus 12.5%; p = 0.04), and among the stranded sea lions, yearlings were most likely to be positive. Future epidemiological studies comparing the presence and viral loads of OtHV3 among a larger population of California sea lions with and without lymphoid neoplasia or esophageal ulcers would help elucidate the relevance of OtHV3-associated pathologies to these groups.
Project description:Urogenital carcinoma is a highly metastatic cancer affecting California sea lions ( Zalophus californianus). The disease has high prevalence amongst stranded animals, and is one of the most commonly observed cancers in wildlife. The genital localisation of primary tumours suggests the possibility that coital transmission of an infectious agent could underlie this disease. Otarine herpesvirus type 1 has been associated with lesions, however a causative role for this virus has not been confirmed. We investigated the possibility that urogenital carcinoma might be clonally transmissible, spread by the direct transfer of cancer cells. Analysis of sequences at the mitochondrial DNA control region in seven matched tumour and host pairs confirmed that tumour genotypes were identical to those of their matched hosts and did not show similarity with tumours from other individuals. Thus our findings suggest that urogenital carcinoma in California sea lions is not clonally transmitted, but rather arises from transformed host cells.
Project description:The TolQ, TolR, TolA, TolB, and Pal proteins appear to function in maintaining the integrity of the outer membrane, as well as facilitating the uptake of the group A colicins and the DNA of the infecting filamentous bacteriophages. Sequence data showed that these genes are clustered in a 6-kb segment of DNA with the gene order orf1 tolQ tolR tolA tolB pal orf2 (a newly identified open reading frame encoding a 29-kD9 protein). Like those containing orf1, bacteria containing an insertion mutation in this gene showed no obvious phenotype. Analysis of beta-galactosidase activity from fusion constructs in which the lac operon was fused to various genes in the cluster showed that the genes in this region constitute two separate operons: orf1 tolQRA and tolB pal orf2. In the orf1 tolQRA operon, translation of MR was dependent on translation of the upstream tolQ region. Consistent with this result, no functional ribosome-binding site for TolR synthesis was detected.
Project description:A new mycovirus was identified in Trichoderma harzianum strain 137 isolated in Xinjiang province, China. The whole genome sequence of the mycovirus was determined by metagenomic sequencing, RT-PCR, and RACE cloning. The mycovirus contained two genomic segments. The first segment was 2088 bp long and contained a single ORF (ORF1) encoding the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRP) (72.26 kDa). The second segment was 1634 bp long and also contained a single ORF (ORF2) encoding a hypothetical protein of 37.472 kDa. We named this novel mycovirus "Trichoderma harzianum bipartite mycovirus 1" (ThBMV1). Phylogenetic analysis showed that ThBMV1 clusters with other unclassified dsRNA mycoviruses.
Project description:A cluster of genes encoding the E1 alpha, E1 beta, and E2 subunits of branched-chain alpha-keto acid dehydrogenase (BCDH) of Streptomyces avermitilis has been cloned and sequenced. Open reading frame 1 (ORF1) (E1 alpha), 1,146 nucleotides long, would encode a polypeptide of 40,969 Da (381 amino acids). ORF2 (E1 beta), 1,005 nucleotides long, would encode a polypeptide of 35,577 Da (334 amino acids). The intergenic distance between ORF1 and ORF2 is 73 bp. The putative ATG start codon of the incomplete ORF3 (E2) overlaps the stop codon of ORF2. Computer-aided searches showed that the deduced products of ORF1 and ORF2 resembled the corresponding E1 subunit (alpha or beta) of several prokaryotic and eukaryotic BCDH complexes. When these ORFs were overexpressed in Escherichia coli, proteins of about 41 and 34 kDa, which are the approximate masses of the predicted S. avermitilis ORF1 and ORF2 products, respectively, were detected. In addition, specific E1 [alpha beta] BCDH activity was detected in E. coli cells carrying the S. avermitilis ORF1 (E1 alpha) and ORF2 (E1 beta) coexpressed under the control of the T7 promoter.
Project description:The reliable identification and classification of infectious diseases is critical for understanding their biology and controlling their impact. Recent advances in sequencing technology have allowed insight into the remarkable diversity of the virosphere, of which a large component remains undiscovered. For these emerging or undescribed viruses, the process of classifying unknown sequences is heavily reliant on existing nucleotide sequence information in public databases. However, due to the enormous diversity of viruses, and past focus on the most prevalent and impactful virus types, databases are often incomplete. Picobirnaviridae is a dsRNA virus family with broad host and geographic range, but with relatively little sequence information in public databases. The family contains one genus, Picobirnavirus, which may be associated with gastric illness in humans and animals. Little further information is available due in part to difficulties in identification. Here, we investigate diversity both within the genus Picobirnavirus and among other dsRNA virus types using a combined phylogenetic and functional (protein structure homology-modelling) approach. Our results show that diversity within picobirnavirus exceeds that seen between many other dsRNA genera. Furthermore, we find that commonly used practices employed to classify picobirnavirus, such as analysis of short fragments and trimming of sequences, can influence phylogenetic conclusions. The degree of phylogenetic and functional divergence among picobirnavirus sequences in our study suggests an enormous undiscovered diversity, which contributes to the undescribed "viral dark matter" component of metagenomic studies.
Project description:The speB gene of Escherichia coli encodes agmatine ureohydrolase (AUH), a putrescine biosynthetic enzyme. The speB gene is transcribed either from its own promoter or as a polycistronic message from the promoter of the speA gene encoding arginine decarboxylase. Two open reading frames (ORF1 and ORF2) are present on the strand complementary to speB; approximately 90% of ORF2 overlaps the speB coding region. Analysis of transcriptional and translational fusions of ORF1 or ORF2 to lacZ revealed that ORF1 encoded a novel protein while ORF2 was not transcribed. Deletion of ORF1 from a plasmid containing ORF1, ORF2, and speB reduced the activity of AUH by 83%. In contrast, the presence of plasmid-encoded ORF1 caused an 86% increase in chromosomally encoded AUH activity. ORF1 did not stimulate alkaline phosphatase expressed from a phi(speB-phoA) transcriptional fusion encoded on the same plasmid. Western analysis (immunoblot) of a phi(ORF1-lacZ) translational fusion revealed that ORF1 encodes a 25.3-kDa protein. Agmatine induced transcription of phi(speB-phoA) but not phi(speA-phoA) fusions. Consequently, agmatine affects selection between the monocistronic and the polycistronic modes of speB transcription. In contrast, cyclic AMP (cAMP) repressed AUH activity of chromosomally encoded AUH but had no effect on plasmid-borne speB nor phi(speB-phoA). It is concluded that ORF1 encodes a protein which is a posttranscriptional regulator of speB, agmatine induces speB independent of speA, and cAMP regulates speB indirectly.
Project description:Previously, we isolated two Tn4351-generated mutants of Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron (46-1 and CS3) that were unable to grow either on heparin or on chondroitin sulfate. This phenotype was unexpected, since the heparin and chondroitin sulfate utilization pathways had appeared from earlier studies to be independent of each other. Mutants 46-1 and CS3 were also of interest because both were unable to compete successfully with wild-type B. thetaiotaomicron in the intestinal tracts of germfree mice. Thus, both appeared to have a colonization defect. We have now cloned the chromosomal locus in which the transposon insertions in 46-1 and CS3 occurred. Southern blot analysis showed that the Tn4351 insertions in 46-1 and CS3 were about 100 bp apart. Using complementation and insertional mutagenesis, we localized the region affected by the 46-1 and CS3 insertions to within 2.5 kbp. This DNA segment was sequenced and found to contain a 401-codon open reading frame (ORF1) and the N-terminal segment of a second open reading frame (ORF2), which was downstream of ORF1 and transcribed in the same direction. The deduced amino acid sequence of ORF1 showed significant homology to that of a putative positive regulator of an arylsulfatase gene in Klebsiella aerogenes. ORF2 was at least 381 amino acids long and did not exhibit homology to any proteins in the data bases searched. Transposon insertions in both mutants 46-1 and CS3 disrupted ORF1. The results of insertional mutagenesis and complementation experiments indicated that ORF2 was not essential for growth on chondroitin sulfate or heparin. Thus, the chondroitin sulfate-negative and heparin-negative phenotypes of 46-1 and CS3 appear to be due to the interruption of a regulatory gene encoded by ORF1 and not to a polar effect of the insertions on a downstream gene(s). The gene encoding ORF1 has been designated chuR, for regulation of chondroitin sulfate and heparin utilization. Transcriptional fusion studies showed that the expression of chuR occurred at the same level under inducing and noninducing conditions, in contrast to the regulated expression of structural genes of the chondroitin sulfate utilization system. chuR was not autoregulated, nor was its expression affected by a mutation (46-4) that eliminated the expression of all chondroitin sulfate utilization genes but did not affect the utilization of heparin.