Abundance and distribution of dimethylsulfoniopropionate degradation genes and the corresponding bacterial community structure at dimethyl sulfide hot spots in the tropical and subtropical pacific ocean.
ABSTRACT: Dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) is mainly produced by marine phytoplankton but is released into the microbial food web and degraded by marine bacteria to dimethyl sulfide (DMS) and other products. To reveal the abundance and distribution of bacterial DMSP degradation genes and the corresponding bacterial communities in relation to DMS and DMSP concentrations in seawater, we collected surface seawater samples from DMS hot spot sites during a cruise across the Pacific Ocean. We analyzed the genes encoding DMSP lyase (dddP) and DMSP demethylase (dmdA), which are responsible for the transformation of DMSP to DMS and DMSP assimilation, respectively. The averaged abundance (±standard deviation) of these DMSP degradation genes relative to that of the 16S rRNA genes was 33% ± 12%. The abundances of these genes showed large spatial variations. dddP genes showed more variation in abundances than dmdA genes. Multidimensional analysis based on the abundances of DMSP degradation genes and environmental factors revealed that the distribution pattern of these genes was influenced by chlorophyll a concentrations and temperatures. dddP genes, dmdA subclade C/2 genes, and dmdA subclade D genes exhibited significant correlations with the marine Roseobacter clade, SAR11 subgroup Ib, and SAR11 subgroup Ia, respectively. SAR11 subgroups Ia and Ib, which possessed dmdA genes, were suggested to be the main potential DMSP consumers. The Roseobacter clade members possessing dddP genes in oligotrophic subtropical regions were possible DMS producers. These results suggest that DMSP degradation genes are abundant and widely distributed in the surface seawater and that the marine bacteria possessing these genes influence the degradation of DMSP and regulate the emissions of DMS in subtropical gyres of the Pacific Ocean.
Project description:Dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) is an organic sulfur compound that is rapidly metabolized by marine bacteria either by cleavage to dimethylsulfide (DMS) or demethylation to 3-methiolpropionate. The abundance and diversity of genes encoding bacterial DMS production (dddP) and demethylation (dmdA) were measured in the North Pacific subtropical gyre (NPSG) between May 2008 and February 2009 at Station ALOHA (22°45'N, 158°00'W) at two depths: 25 m and the deep chlorophyll maximum (DCM; ?100 m). The highest abundance of dmdA genes was in May 2008 at 25 m, with ?16.5% of cells harboring a gene in one of the eight subclades surveyed, while the highest abundance of dddP genes was in July 2008 at 25 m, with ?2% of cells harboring a gene. The dmdA gene pool was consistently dominated by homologs from SAR11 subclades, which was supported by findings in metagenomic data sets derived from Station ALOHA. Expression of the SAR11 dmdA genes was low, with typical transcript:gene ratios between 1:350 and 1:1,400. The abundance of DMSP genes was statistically different between 25 m and the DCM and correlated with a number of environmental variables, including primary production, photosynthetically active radiation, particulate DMSP, and DMS concentrations. At 25 m, dddP abundance was positively correlated with pigments that are diagnostic of diatoms; at the DCM, dmdA abundance was positively correlated with temperature. Based on gene abundance, we hypothesize that SAR11 bacterioplankton dominate DMSP cycling in the oligotrophic NPSG, with lesser but consistent involvement of other members of the bacterioplankton community.
Project description:Dimethyl sulfide (DMS) is an important component of the global sulfur cycle as it is the most abundant sulfur compound that is emitted via the ocean surface to the atmosphere. Dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP), the precursor of DMS, is mainly produced by phytoplankton and is degraded by marine bacteria. To reveal the role of bacteria in the regulation of DMSP degradation and DMS production, mesocosm and field studies were performed in the Sanriku Coast on the Pacific Ocean in northeast Japan. The responsible bacteria for the transformation of DMSP to DMS and the assimilation of DMSP were monitored, and the genes encoding DMSP lyase (dddD and dddP) and DMSP demethylase (dmdA) were analyzed. The mesocosm study showed that the dmdA subclade D was the dominant DMSP degradation gene in the free-living (FL) and particle-associated (PA) fractions. The dddD gene was found in higher abundance than the dddP gene in all the tested samples. Most importantly, DMS concentration was positively correlated with the abundance of the dddD gene. These results indicated that bacteria possessing dmdA and dddD genes were the major contributors to the DMSP degradation and DMS production, respectively. The genes dmdA subclade D and dddP were abundant in the Tsugaru Warm (TW) Current, while the dmdA subclade C/2 and dddD genes were dominant in the Oyashio (OY) Current. Functional gene network analysis also showed that the DMSP degradation genes were divided into OY and TW Current-related modules, and genes sharing similar functions were clustered in the same module. Our data suggest that environmental fluctuations resulted in habitat filtering and niche partitioning of bacteria possessing DMSP degradation genes. Overall, our findings provide novel insights into the distribution and abundance of DMSP degradation genes in a coastal region with different water current systems.
Project description:The compatible solute dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP), made by many marine organisms, is one of Earth's most abundant organosulfur molecules. Many marine bacteria import DMSP and can degrade it as a source of carbon and/or sulfur via DMSP cleavage or DMSP demethylation pathways, which can generate the climate active gases dimethyl sulfide (DMS) or methanthiol (MeSH), respectively. Here we used culture-dependent and -independent methods to study bacteria catabolizing DMSP in the East China Sea (ECS). Of bacterial isolates, 42.11% showed DMSP-dependent DMS (Ddd+) activity, and 12.28% produced detectable levels of MeSH. Interestingly, although most Ddd+ isolates were Alphaproteobacteria (mainly Roseobacters), many gram-positive Actinobacteria were also shown to cleave DMSP producing DMS. The mechanism by which these Actinobacteria cleave DMSP is unknown, since no known functional ddd genes have been identified in genome sequences of Ddd+ Microbacterium and Agrococcus isolates or in any other sequenced Actinobacteria genomes. Gene probes to the DMSP demethylation gene dmdA and the DMSP lyase gene dddP demonstrated that these DMSP-degrading genes are abundant and widely distributed in ECS seawaters. dmdA was present in relatively high proportions in both surface (19.53% ± 6.70%) and bottom seawater bacteria (16.00% ± 8.73%). In contrast, dddP abundance positively correlated with chlorophyll a, and gradually decreased with the distance from land, which implies that the bacterial DMSP lyase gene dddP might be from bacterial groups that closely associate with phytoplankton. Bacterial community analysis showed positive correlations between Rhodobacteraceae abundance and concentrations of DMS and DMSP, further confirming the link between this abundant bacterial class and the environmental DMSP cycling.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Ubiquitous and diverse marine microorganisms utilise the abundant organosulfur molecule dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP), the main precursor of the climate-active gas dimethylsulfide (DMS), as a source of carbon, sulfur and/or signalling molecules. However, it is currently difficult to discern which microbes actively catabolise DMSP in the environment, why they do so and the pathways used.<h4>Results</h4>Here, a novel DNA-stable isotope probing (SIP) approach, where only the propionate and not the DMS moiety of DMSP was <sup>13</sup>C-labelled, was strategically applied to identify key microorganisms actively using DMSP and also likely DMS as a carbon source, and their catabolic enzymes, in North Sea water. Metagenomic analysis of natural seawater suggested that Rhodobacterales (Roseobacter group) and SAR11 bacteria were the major microorganisms degrading DMSP via demethylation and, to a lesser extent, DddP-driven DMSP lysis pathways. However, neither Rhodobacterales and SAR11 bacteria nor their DMSP catabolic genes were prominently labelled in DNA-SIP experiments, suggesting they use DMSP as a sulfur source and/or in signalling pathways, and not primarily for carbon requirements. Instead, DNA-SIP identified gammaproteobacterial Oceanospirillales, e.g. Amphritea, and their DMSP lyase DddD as the dominant microorganisms/enzymes using DMSP as a carbon source. Supporting this, most gammaproteobacterial (with DddD) but few alphaproteobacterial seawater isolates grew on DMSP as sole carbon source and produced DMS. Furthermore, our DNA-SIP strategy also identified Methylophaga and other Piscirickettsiaceae as key bacteria likely using the DMS, generated from DMSP lysis, as a carbon source.<h4>Conclusions</h4>This is the first study to use DNA-SIP with <sup>13</sup>C-labelled DMSP and, in a novel way, it identifies the dominant microbes utilising DMSP and DMS as carbon sources. It highlights that whilst metagenomic analyses of marine environments can predict microorganisms/genes that degrade DMSP and DMS based on their abundance, it cannot disentangle those using these important organosulfur compounds for their carbon requirements. Note, the most abundant DMSP degraders, e.g. Rhodobacterales with DmdA, are not always the key microorganisms using DMSP for carbon and releasing DMS, which in this coastal system were Oceanospirillales containing DddD. Video abstract.
Project description:The microbial cycling of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) and its gaseous catabolites dimethylsulfide (DMS) and methanethiol (MeSH) are important processes in the global sulfur cycle, marine microbial food webs, signaling pathways, atmospheric chemistry, and potentially climate regulation. Many functional genes have been identified and used to study the genetic potential of microbes to produce and catabolize these organosulfur compounds in different marine environments. Here, we sampled seawater, marine sediment and hydrothermal sediment, and polymetallic sulfide in the eastern Chinese marginal seas and analyzed their microbial communities for the genetic potential to cycle DMSP, DMS, and MeSH using metagenomics. DMSP was abundant in all sediment samples, but was fivefold less prominent in those from hydrothermal samples. Indeed, Yellow Sea (YS) sediment samples had DMSP concentrations two orders of magnitude higher than in surface water samples. Bacterial genetic potential to synthesize DMSP (mainly in Rhodobacteraceae bacteria) was far higher than for phytoplankton in all samples, but particularly in the sediment where no algal DMSP synthesis genes were detected. Thus, we propose bacteria as important DMSP producers in these marine sediments. DMSP catabolic pathways mediated by the DMSP lyase DddP (prominent in Pseudomonas and Mesorhizobium bacteria) and DMSP demethylase DmdA enzymes (prominent in Rhodobacteraceae bacteria) and MddA-mediated MeSH S-methylation were very abundant in Bohai Sea and Yellow Sea sediments (BYSS) samples. In contrast, the genetic potential for DMSP degradation was very low in the hydrothermal sediment samples-dddP was the only catabolic gene detected and in only one sample. However, the potential for DMS production from MeSH (mddA) and DMS oxidation (dmoA and ddhA) was relatively abundant. This metagenomics study does not provide conclusive evidence for DMSP cycling; however, it does highlight the potential importance of bacteria in the synthesis and catabolism of DMSP and related compounds in diverse sediment environments.
Project description:Dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP), which is the major source of organic sulfur in the world's oceans, plays a significant role in the global sulfur cycle. This compound is rapidly degraded by marine bacteria either by cleavage to dimethylsulfide (DMS) or demethylation to 3-methylmercaptopropionate (MMPA). The diversity of genes encoding bacterial demethylation (dmdA) and DMS production (dddL and dddP) were measured in Arctic Kongsfjorden. Both dmdA and dddL genes were detected in all stations along a transect from the outer to the inner fjord, while dddP gene was only found in the outer and middle parts of the fjord. The dmdA gene was completely confined to the Roseobacter clade, while the dddL gene was confined to the genus Sulfitobacter. Although the dddP gene pool was also dominated by homologs from the Roseobacter clade, there were a few dddP genes showing close relationships to both Alphaproteobacter and Gammaproteobacter. The results of this study suggest that the Roseobacter clade may play an important role in DMSP catabolism via both demethylation and cleavage pathways in surface waters of Kongsfjorden during summer.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Dimethyl sulfide (DMS) is the dominant volatile organic sulfur in global oceans. The predominant source of oceanic DMS is the cleavage of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP), which can be produced by marine bacteria and phytoplankton. Polar oceans, which represent about one fifth of Earth's surface, contribute significantly to the global oceanic DMS sea-air flux. However, a global overview of DMS and DMSP cycling in polar oceans is still lacking and the key genes and the microbial assemblages involved in DMSP/DMS transformation remain to be fully unveiled.<h4>Results</h4>Here, we systematically investigated the biogeographic traits of 16 key microbial enzymes involved in DMS/DMSP cycling in 60 metagenomic samples from polar waters, together with 174 metagenome and 151 metatranscriptomes from non-polar Tara Ocean dataset. Our analyses suggest that intense DMS/DMSP cycling occurs in the polar oceans. DMSP demethylase (DmdA), DMSP lyases (DddD, DddP, and DddK), and trimethylamine monooxygenase (Tmm, which oxidizes DMS to dimethylsulfoxide) were the most prevalent bacterial genes involved in global DMS/DMSP cycling. Alphaproteobacteria (Pelagibacterales) and Gammaproteobacteria appear to play prominent roles in DMS/DMSP cycling in polar oceans. The phenomenon that multiple DMS/DMSP cycling genes co-occurred in the same bacterial genome was also observed in metagenome assembled genomes (MAGs) from polar oceans. The microbial assemblages from the polar oceans were significantly correlated with water depth rather than geographic distance, suggesting the differences of habitats between surface and deep waters rather than dispersal limitation are the key factors shaping microbial assemblages involved in DMS/DMSP cycling in polar oceans.<h4>Conclusions</h4>Overall, this study provides a global overview of the biogeographic traits of known bacterial genes involved in DMS/DMSP cycling from the Arctic and Antarctic oceans, laying a solid foundation for further studies of DMS/DMSP cycling in polar ocean microbiome at the enzymatic, metabolic, and processual levels. Video Abstract.
Project description:The osmolyte dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) is produced in petagram quantities in marine environments and has important roles in global sulfur and carbon cycling. Many marine microorganisms catabolize DMSP via DMSP lyases, generating the climate-active gas dimethyl sulfide (DMS). DMS oxidation products participate in forming cloud condensation nuclei and, thus, may influence weather and climate. SAR11 bacteria are the most abundant marine heterotrophic bacteria; many of them contain the DMSP lyase DddK, and their dddK transcripts are relatively abundant in seawater. In a recently described catalytic mechanism for DddK, Tyr64 is predicted to act as the catalytic base initiating the ?-elimination reaction of DMSP. Tyr64 was proposed to be deprotonated by coordination to the metal cofactor or its neighboring His96. To further probe this mechanism, we purified and characterized the DddK protein from Pelagibacter ubique strain HTCC1062 and determined the crystal structures of wild-type DddK and its Y64A and Y122A mutants (bearing a change of Y to A at position 64 or 122, respectively), where the Y122A mutant is complexed with DMSP. The structural and mutational analyses largely support the catalytic role of Tyr64, but not the method of its deprotonation. Our data indicate that an active water molecule in the active site of DddK plays an important role in the deprotonation of Tyr64 and that this is far more likely than coordination to the metal or His96. Sequence alignment and phylogenetic analysis suggest that the proposed catalytic mechanism of DddK has universal significance. Our results provide new mechanistic insights into DddK and enrich our understanding of DMS generation by SAR11 bacteria.IMPORTANCE The climate-active gas dimethyl sulfide (DMS) plays an important role in global sulfur cycling and atmospheric chemistry. DMS is mainly produced through the bacterial cleavage of marine dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP). When released into the atmosphere from the oceans, DMS can be photochemically oxidized into DMSO or sulfate aerosols, which form cloud condensation nuclei that influence the reflectivity of clouds and, thereby, global temperature. SAR11 bacteria are the most abundant marine heterotrophic bacteria, and many of them contain DMSP lyase DddK to cleave DMSP, generating DMS. In this study, based on structural analyses and mutational assays, we revealed the catalytic mechanism of DddK, which has universal significance in SAR11 bacteria. This study provides new insights into the catalytic mechanism of DddK, leading to a better understanding of how SAR11 bacteria generate DMS.
Project description:The elucidation of the pathways for dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) synthesis and metabolism and the ecological impact of DMSP have been studied for nearly 70 years. Much of this interest stems from the fact that DMSP metabolism produces the climatically active gas dimethyl sulfide (DMS), the primary natural source of sulfur to the atmosphere. DMSP plays many important roles for marine life, including use as an osmolyte, antioxidant, predator deterrent, and cryoprotectant for phytoplankton and as a reduced carbon and sulfur source for marine bacteria. DMSP is hypothesized to have become abundant in oceans approximately 250 million years ago with the diversification of the strong DMSP producers, the dinoflagellates. This event coincides with the first genome expansion of the Roseobacter clade, known DMSP degraders. Structural and mechanistic studies of the enzymes of the bacterial DMSP demethylation and cleavage pathways suggest that exposure to DMSP led to the recruitment of enzymes from preexisting metabolic pathways. In some cases, such as DmdA, DmdD, and DddP, these enzymes appear to have evolved to become more specific for DMSP metabolism. By contrast, many of the other enzymes, DmdB, DmdC, and the acrylate utilization hydratase AcuH, have maintained broad functionality and substrate specificities, allowing them to carry out a range of reactions within the cell. This review will cover the experimental evidence supporting the hypothesis that, as DMSP became more readily available in the marine environment, marine bacteria adapted enzymes already encoded in their genomes to utilize this new compound.
Project description:The Escherichia coli YhdH polypeptide is in the MDR012 sub-group of medium chain reductase/dehydrogenases, but its biological function was unknown and no phenotypes of YhdH(-) mutants had been described. We found that an E. coli strain with an insertional mutation in yhdH was hyper-sensitive to inhibitory effects of acrylate, and, to a lesser extent, to those of 3-hydroxypropionate. Close homologues of YhdH occur in many Bacterial taxa and at least two animals. The acrylate sensitivity of YhdH(-) mutants was corrected by the corresponding, cloned homologues from several bacteria. One such homologue is acuI, which has a role in acrylate degradation in marine bacteria that catabolise dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) an abundant anti-stress compound made by marine phytoplankton. The acuI genes of such bacteria are often linked to ddd genes that encode enzymes that cleave DMSP into acrylate plus dimethyl sulfide (DMS), even though these are in different polypeptide families, in unrelated bacteria. Furthermore, most strains of Roseobacters, a clade of abundant marine bacteria, cleave DMSP into acrylate plus DMS, and can also demethylate it, using DMSP demethylase. In most Roseobacters, the corresponding gene, dmdA, lies immediately upstream of acuI and in the model Roseobacter strain Ruegeria pomeroyi DSS-3, dmdA-acuI were co-regulated in response to the co-inducer, acrylate. These observations, together with findings by others that AcuI has acryloyl-CoA reductase activity, lead us to suggest that YdhH/AcuI enzymes protect cells against damaging effects of intracellular acryloyl-CoA, formed endogenously, and/or via catabolising exogenous acrylate. To provide "added protection" for bacteria that form acrylate from DMSP, acuI was recruited into clusters of genes involved in this conversion and, in the case of acuI and dmdA in the Roseobacters, their co-expression may underpin an interaction between the two routes of DMSP catabolism, whereby the acrylate product of DMSP lyases is a co-inducer for the demethylation pathway.