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Sample records for halophilic archaea haloferax

  1. RNomics and Modomics in the halophilic archaea Haloferax volcanii: identification of RNA modification genes

    PubMed Central

    Grosjean, Henri; Gaspin, Christine; Marck, Christian; Decatur, Wayne A; de Crécy-Lagard, Valérie

    2008-01-01

    Background Naturally occurring RNAs contain numerous enzymatically altered nucleosides. Differences in RNA populations (RNomics) and pattern of RNA modifications (Modomics) depends on the organism analyzed and are two of the criteria that distinguish the three kingdoms of life. If the genomic sequences of the RNA molecules can be derived from whole genome sequence information, the modification profile cannot and requires or direct sequencing of the RNAs or predictive methods base on the presence or absence of the modifications genes. Results By employing a comparative genomics approach, we predicted almost all of the genes coding for the t+rRNA modification enzymes in the mesophilic moderate halophile Haloferax volcanii. These encode both guide RNAs and enzymes. Some are orthologous to previously identified genes in Archaea, Bacteria or in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, but several are original predictions. Conclusion The number of modifications in t+rRNAs in the halophilic archaeon is surprisingly low when compared with other Archaea or Bacteria, particularly the hyperthermophilic organisms. This may result from the specific lifestyle of halophiles that require high intracellular salt concentration for survival. This salt content could allow RNA to maintain its functional structural integrity with fewer modifications. We predict that the few modifications present must be particularly important for decoding, accuracy of translation or are modifications that cannot be functionally replaced by the electrostatic interactions provided by the surrounding salt-ions. This analysis also guides future experimental validation work aiming to complete the understanding of the function of RNA modifications in Archaeal translation. PMID:18844986

  2. A halocin-H4 mutant Haloferax mediterranei strain retains the ability to inhibit growth of other halophilic archaea.

    PubMed

    Naor, Adit; Yair, Yael; Gophna, Uri

    2013-11-01

    Many members of the Halobacteriaceae were found to produce halocins, molecules that inhibit the growth of other halophilic archaea. Halocin H4 that is produced by Haloferax mediterranei and inhibits the growth of Halobacterium salinarum is one of the best studied halocins to date. The gene encoding this halocin had been previously identified as halH4, located on one of Hfx. mediterranei megaplasmids. We generated a mutant of the halH4 gene and examined the killing ability of the Haloferax mediterranei halH4 mutant with respect to both Halobacterium salinarum and Haloferax volcanii. We showed that both wild-type Hfx. mediterranei and the halH4 mutant strain efficiently inhibited the growth of both species, indicating halocin redundancy. Surprisingly, the halH4 deletion mutant exhibited faster growth in standard medium than the wild type, and is likely to have a better response to several nucleotides, which could explain this phenotype. PMID:24037372

  3. Towards glycoengineering in archaea: replacement of Haloferax volcanii AglD with homologous glycosyltransferases from other halophilic archaea.

    PubMed

    Calo, Doron; Eilam, Yael; Lichtenstein, Rachel G; Eichler, Jerry

    2010-09-01

    Like eukarya and bacteria, archaea also perform N-glycosylation. However, the N-linked glycans of archaeal glycoproteins present a variety not seen elsewhere. Archaea accordingly rely on N-glycosylation pathways likely involving a broad range of species-specific enzymes. To harness the enormous applied potential of such diversity for the generation of glycoproteins bearing tailored N-linked glycans, the development of an appropriate archaeal glycoengineering platform is required. With a sequenced genome, a relatively well-defined N-glycosylation pathway, and molecular tools for gene manipulation, the haloarchaeon Haloferax volcanii (Hfx. volcanii) represents a promising candidate. Accordingly, cells lacking AglD, a glycosyltransferase involved in adding the final hexose of a pentasaccharide N-linked to the surface (S)-layer glycoprotein, were transformed to express AglD homologues from other haloarchaea. The introduction of nonnative versions of AglD led to the appearance of an S-layer glycoprotein similar to the protein from the native strain. Indeed, mass spectrometry confirmed that AglD and its homologues introduce the final hexose to the N-linked S-layer glycoprotein pentasaccharide. Heterologously expressed haloarchaeal AglD homologues contributed to N-glycosylation in Hfx. volcanii despite an apparent lack of AglD function in those haloarchaea from where the introduced homologues came. For example, although functional in Hfx. volcanii, no transcription of the Halobacterium salinarum aglD homologue, OE1482, was detected in cells of the native host grown under various conditions. Thus, at least one AglD homologue works more readily in Hfx. volcanii than in the native host. These results warrant the continued assessment of Hfx. volcanii as a glycosylation "workshop." PMID:20601508

  4. Metabolism of halophilic archaea.

    PubMed

    Falb, Michaela; Müller, Kerstin; Königsmaier, Lisa; Oberwinkler, Tanja; Horn, Patrick; von Gronau, Susanne; Gonzalez, Orland; Pfeiffer, Friedhelm; Bornberg-Bauer, Erich; Oesterhelt, Dieter

    2008-03-01

    In spite of their common hypersaline environment, halophilic archaea are surprisingly different in their nutritional demands and metabolic pathways. The metabolic diversity of halophilic archaea was investigated at the genomic level through systematic metabolic reconstruction and comparative analysis of four completely sequenced species: Halobacterium salinarum, Haloarcula marismortui, Haloquadratum walsbyi, and the haloalkaliphile Natronomonas pharaonis. The comparative study reveals different sets of enzyme genes amongst halophilic archaea, e.g. in glycerol degradation, pentose metabolism, and folate synthesis. The carefully assessed metabolic data represent a reliable resource for future system biology approaches as it also links to current experimental data on (halo)archaea from the literature. PMID:18278431

  5. Overexpression and purification of halophilic proteins in Haloferax volcanii.

    PubMed

    Allers, Thorsten

    2010-01-01

    Halophilic enzymes function optimally at high salt concentrations and are active at low water availability. Such conditions are encountered at elevated concentrations of solutes such as salts and sugars, and at high concentrations of organic solvents. However, expression in heterologous hosts such as Escherichia coli can cause problems, since halophilic proteins typically misfold and aggregate in conditions of low ionic strength. We have harnessed the sophisticated genetic tools available for the haloarchaeon Haloferax volcanii, to develop a system for the overexpression and purification of halophilic proteins under native conditions. PMID:21327063

  6. Genomic stability in the archaeae Haloferax volcanii and Haloferax mediterranei.

    PubMed Central

    López-García, P; St Jean, A; Amils, R; Charlebois, R L

    1995-01-01

    Through hybridization of available probes, we have added nine genes to the macrorestriction map of the Haloferax mediterranei chromosome and five genes to the contig map of Haloferax volcanii. Additionally, we hybridized 17 of the mapped cosmid clones from H. volcanii to the H. mediterranei genome. The resulting 35-point chromosomal comparison revealed only two inversions and a few translocations. Forces known to promote rearrangement, common in the haloarchaea, have been ineffective in changing global gene order throughout the nearly 10(7) years of these species' divergent evolution. PMID:7868620

  7. Regulated polyploidy in halophilic archaea.

    PubMed

    Breuert, Sebastian; Allers, Thorsten; Spohn, Gabi; Soppa, Jörg

    2006-01-01

    Polyploidy is common in higher eukaryotes, especially in plants, but it is generally assumed that most prokaryotes contain a single copy of a circular chromosome and are therefore monoploid. We have used two independent methods to determine the genome copy number in halophilic archaea, 1) cell lysis in agarose blocks and Southern blot analysis, and 2) Real-Time quantitative PCR. Fast growing H. salinarum cells contain on average about 25 copies of the chromosome in exponential phase, and their ploidy is downregulated to 15 copies in early stationary phase. The chromosome copy number is identical in cultures with a twofold lower growth rate, in contrast to the results reported for several other prokaryotic species. Of three additional replicons of H. salinarum, two have a low copy number that is not growth-phase regulated, while one replicon even shows a higher degree of growth phase-dependent regulation than the main replicon. The genome copy number of H. volcanii is similarly high during exponential phase (on average 18 copies/cell), and it is also downregulated (to 10 copies) as the cells enter stationary phase. The variation of genome copy numbers in the population was addressed by fluorescence microscopy and by FACS analysis. These methods allowed us to verify the growth phase-dependent regulation of ploidy in H. salinarum, and they revealed that there is a wide variation in genome copy numbers in individual cells that is much larger in exponential than in stationary phase. Our results indicate that polyploidy might be more widespread in archaea (or even prokaryotes in general) than previously assumed. Moreover, the presence of so many genome copies in a prokaryote raises questions about the evolutionary significance of this strategy. PMID:17183724

  8. Post-translation modification in Archaea: Lessons from Haloferax volcanii and other haloarchaea

    PubMed Central

    Eichler, Jerry; Maupin-Furlow, Julie

    2012-01-01

    As an ever-growing number of genome sequences appear, it is becoming increasingly clear that factors other than genome sequence impart complexity to the proteome. Of the various sources of proteomic variability, post-translational modifications most greatly serve to expand the variety of proteins found in the cell. Likewise, modulating the rates at which different proteins are degraded also results in a constantly changing cellular protein profile. While both strategies for generating proteomic diversity are adopted by organisms across evolution, the responsible pathways and enzymes in Archaea are often less well described than are their eukaryotic and bacterial counterparts. Studies on halophilic archaea, in particular Haloferax volcanii, originally isolated from the Dead Sea, are helping to fill the void. In this review, recent developments concerning post-translational modifications and protein degradation in the haloarchaea are discussed. PMID:23167813

  9. Haloferax chudinovii sp. nov., a halophilic archaeon from Permian potassium salt deposits.

    PubMed

    Saralov, Alexander I; Baslerov, Roman V; Kuznetsov, Boris B

    2013-05-01

    Three pigmented strains of halophilic archaea (RS75, RS77, RS79) were isolated from the monoliths of mottled sylvinite from the Verkhnekamsk salt deposit (Solikamsk, Russia). The cells were nonmotile, gram-negative, pleomorphic, disk-shaped or ovoid, 0.8-1.0 × 1.5-2.5 μm. The organism was a chemoorganotrophic obligate aerobe producing catalase and oxidase. A number of carbohydrates and carboxylic acids were used as growth substrates. Growth occurred in the presence of 7-27% NaCl (with the optimum at 15-18%), 0.02-20% KCl (0.2-1%), 0.2-16% MgCl2 (2-3%), in the temperature range from 23 to 51 °C (40-45 °C), and pH 5.5-8.0 (6.8-7.0). The membranes contained carotenoids of the bacterioruberin series. Phosphatidylglyceromethylphosphate (PGP-Me), phosphatidylglycerol (PG), sulfated diglycosyl diether (S-DGD-1) predominated among the polar lipids. The DNA G + C content was 64.0-65.0 mol %. Phylogenetic analysis of the 16S rRNA gene sequences showed high similarity of the new strains to Haloferax species: H. denitrificans (99.2%) and H. volcanii (99.1%), H. larsenii (96.9%) and H. elongans (96.6%). DNA-DNA hybridization revealed 93-95% similarity between strain RS75 and strains RS77 and RS79; the similarity levels between strain RS75 and the type strains of Haloferax denitrificans VKM B-1754(T) and Halobacterium salinarum VKM B-1769(T) were 50 and 10%, respectively. According to its phenotypic and genotypic characteristics, the organism was classified as a member of the genus Haloferax, forming a new species with the proposed name Haloferax chudinovii sp. nov. type strain is RS75(T) (=VKPM B-11279(T)). PMID:23525908

  10. Resistance of extremely halophilic archaea to zinc and zinc oxide nanoparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salgaonkar, Bhakti B.; Das, Deepthi; Bragança, Judith Maria

    2016-02-01

    Industrialization as well as other anthropogenic activities have resulted in addition of high loads of metal and/or metal nanoparticles to the environment. In this study, the effect of one of the widely used heavy metal, zinc (Zn) and zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO NPs) on extremely halophilic archaea was evaluated. One representative member from four genera namely Halococcus, Haloferax, Halorubrum and Haloarcula of the family Halobacteriaceae was taken as the model organism. All the haloarchaeal genera investigated were resistant to both ZnCl2 and ZnO NPs at varying concentrations. Halococcus strain BK6 and Haloferax strain BBK2 showed the highest resistance in complex/minimal medium of up to 2.0/1.0 mM ZnCl2 and 2.0/1.0-0.5 mM ZnO NP. Accumulation of ZnCl2/ZnO NPs was seen as Haloferax strain BBK2 (287.2/549.6 mg g-1) > Halococcus strain BK6 (165.9/388.5 mg g-1) > Haloarcula strain BS2 (93.2/28.5 mg g-1) > Halorubrum strain BS17 (29.9/16.2 mg g-1). Scanning electron microscopy and energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (SEM-EDX) analysis revealed that bulk ZnCl2 was sorbed at a higher concentration (21.77 %) on the cell surface of Haloferax strain BBK2 as compared to the ZnO NPs (14.89 %).

  11. Astrobiological studies with extremely halophilic Archaea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fendrihan, S.; Lotter, H. Stan

    2007-08-01

    Extremely halophilic Archaea were isolated and characterized by both classical and modern molecular biological methods from hypersaline and haloalkaline lakes, salted soils, solar salterns and rock salt deposits (1). The survival of these micro-organisms after embedding in laboratory-made halite was investigated. Their presence in fluid inclusions was demonstrated by staining with the BacLight LIVE/DEAD kit and observation of their fluorescence by microscopy. Following resuspension of cells from halite crystals, a survival of about 0.5 - 4% according to colony forming units was obtained. In previous studies which focussed on the resistance of halophilic archaea to UV radiation or the space environment, survival of a dose of 110 J/m2 (using liquid cultures) and up to 10 000 J/m2 at a range of 200 - 400 nm was reported, when dried Haloarcula sp. in a single layer were exposed on the Biopan facility (2). We exposed a few haloarchaeal strains to a Martian UV simulator lamp with a range of 200 - 400 nm and an intensity of 41.2 W/m2, obtaining a viability of about 51- 67% of cells following different exposure times. Other studies focus on the detection of haloarchaea in halite by Raman microspectroscopy and by NIR-FT-Raman spectroscopy, which are considered to be important future tools for Mars exploration (3). Using the Dilor XY Raman spectrometer with laser excitation at 514.5 nm, equipped with a confocal microscope BX40 (Olympus Corp., Japan) and a Bruker IFS 66 + FRA106 with laser excitation at 1064 nm (Bruker, Germany), instruments, we obtained characteristic carotenoid peaks contained by these microorganisms. 1. Fendrihan S., Legat A., Pfaffenhuemer M., Gruber C., Weidler G., Gerbl F. Stan Lotter H. (2006) Extremely halophilic archaea and the issue of long-term microbial survival. Review. Environ. Sci. Biotechnol. 5: 203-218. 2. Mancinelli R. L., White M. R., Rothschild L. J. (1998) Biopan survival I : exposure of the osmophiles Synechococcus sp. (Nägeli) and

  12. Structural characterization of the N-linked pentasaccharide decorating glycoproteins of the halophilic archaeon Haloferax volcanii.

    PubMed

    Kandiba, Lina; Lin, Chia-Wei; Aebi, Markus; Eichler, Jerry; Guerardel, Yann

    2016-07-01

    N-Glycosylation is a post-translational modification performed in all three domains of life. In the halophilic archaea Haloferax volcanii, glycoproteins such as the S-layer glycoprotein are modified by an N-linked pentasaccharide assembled by a series of Agl (archaeal glycosylation) proteins. In the present study, mass spectrometry (MS) and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy were used to define the structure of this glycan attached to at least four of the seven putative S-layer glycoprotein N-glycosylation sites, namely Asn-13, Asn-83, Asn-274 and Asn-279. Such approaches detected a trisaccharide corresponding to glucuronic acid (GlcA)-β1,4-GlcA-β1,4-glucose-β1-Asn, a tetrasaccharide corresponding to methyl-O-4-GlcA-β-1,4-galacturonic acid-α1,4-GlcA-β1,4-glucose-β1-Asn, and a pentasaccharide corresponding to hexose-1,2-[methyl-O-4-]GlcA-β-1,4-galacturonic acid-α1,4-GlcA-β1,4-glucose-β1-Asn, with previous MS and radiolabeling experiments showing the hexose at the non-reducing end of the pentasaccharide to be mannose. The present analysis thus corrects the earlier assignment of the penultimate sugar as a methyl ester of a hexuronic acid, instead revealing this sugar to be a methylated GlcA. The assignments made here are in good agreement with what was already known of the Hfx. volcanii N-glycosylation pathway from previous genetic and biochemical efforts while providing new insight into the process. PMID:26863921

  13. Heavy metal resistance in halophilic Bacteria and Archaea.

    PubMed

    Voica, Doriana Mădălina; Bartha, Laszlo; Banciu, Horia Leonard; Oren, Aharon

    2016-07-01

    Heavy metals are dense chemicals with dual biological role as micronutrients and intoxicants. A few hypersaline environmental systems are naturally enriched with heavy metals, while most metal-contaminated sites are a consequence of human activities. Numerous halotolerant and moderately halophilic Bacteria possess metal tolerance, whereas a few archaeal counterparts share similar features. The main mechanisms underlying heavy metal resistance in halophilic Bacteria and Archaea include extracellular metal sequestration by biopolymers, metal efflux mediated by specific transporters and enzymatic detoxification. Biotransformation of metals by halophiles has implications both for trace metal turnover in natural saline ecosystems and for development of novel bioremediation strategies. PMID:27279625

  14. Crystal structures of a halophilic archaeal malate synthase from Haloferax volcanii and comparisons with isoforms A and G

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Malate synthase, one of the two enzymes unique to the glyoxylate cycle, is found in all three domains of life, and is crucial to the utilization of two-carbon compounds for net biosynthetic pathways such as gluconeogenesis. In addition to the main isoforms A and G, so named because of their differential expression in E. coli grown on either acetate or glycolate respectively, a third distinct isoform has been identified. These three isoforms differ considerably in size and sequence conservation. The A isoform (MSA) comprises ~530 residues, the G isoform (MSG) is ~730 residues, and this third isoform (MSH-halophilic) is ~430 residues in length. Both isoforms A and G have been structurally characterized in detail, but no structures have been reported for the H isoform which has been found thus far only in members of the halophilic Archaea. Results We have solved the structure of a malate synthase H (MSH) isoform member from Haloferax volcanii in complex with glyoxylate at 2.51 Å resolution, and also as a ternary complex with acetyl-coenzyme A and pyruvate at 1.95 Å. Like the A and G isoforms, MSH is based on a β8/α8 (TIM) barrel. Unlike previously solved malate synthase structures which are all monomeric, this enzyme is found in the native state as a trimer/hexamer equilibrium. Compared to isoforms A and G, MSH displays deletion of an N-terminal domain and a smaller deletion at the C-terminus. The MSH active site is closely superimposable with those of MSA and MSG, with the ternary complex indicating a nucleophilic attack on pyruvate by the enolate intermediate of acetyl-coenzyme A. Conclusions The reported structures of MSH from Haloferax volcanii allow a detailed analysis and comparison with previously solved structures of isoforms A and G. These structural comparisons provide insight into evolutionary relationships among these isoforms, and also indicate that despite the size and sequence variation, and the truncated C-terminal domain of the H

  15. Identification of several intracellular carbohydrate-degrading activities from the halophilic archaeon Haloferax mediterranei.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Pomares, F; Díaz, S; Bautista, V; Pire, C; Bravo, G; Esclapez, J; Zafrilla, B; Bonete, María-José

    2009-07-01

    Three different amylolytic activities, designated AMY1, AMY2, and AMY3 were detected in the cytoplasm of the extreme halophilic archaeon Haloferax mediterranei grown in a starch containing medium. This organism had also been reported to excrete an alpha-amylase into the external medium in such conditions. The presence of these different enzymes which are also able to degrade starch may be related to the use of the available carbohydrates and maltodextrins, including the products obtained by the action of the extracellular amylase on starch that may be transported to the cytoplasm of the organism. The behavior of these intracellular hydrolytic enzymes on starch is reported here and compared with their extracellular counterpart. Two of these glycosidic activities (AMY1, AMY3) have also been purified and further characterized. As with other halophilic enzymes, they were salt dependent and displayed maximal activity at 3 M NaCl, and 50 degrees C. The purification steps and molecular masses have also been reported. The other activity (AMY2) was also detected in extracts from cells grown in media with glycerol instead of starch and in a yeast extract medium. This enzyme was able to degrade starch yielding small oligosaccharides and displayed similar halophilic behavior with salt requirement in the range 1.5-3 M NaCl. PMID:19396510

  16. Culturable diversity of aerobic halophilic archaea (Fam. Halobacteriaceae) from hypersaline, meromictic Transylvanian lakes.

    PubMed

    Baricz, Andreea; Cristea, Adorján; Muntean, Vasile; Teodosiu, Gabriela; Andrei, Adrian-Ştefan; Molnár, Imola; Alexe, Mircea; Rakosy-Tican, Elena; Banciu, Horia Leonard

    2015-03-01

    Perennially stratified salt lakes situated in the Transylvanian Basin (Central Romania) were surveyed for the diversity of culturable halophilic archaea (Fam. Halobacteriaceae). The physical and chemical characteristics of the waters indicated that all the investigated lakes were meromictic and neutral hypersaline. Samples collected from upper, intermediate, and deeper water layers and sediments were used for the isolation of halophilic strains followed by 16S rRNA gene-based identification and phenotypic characterization. The phylogenetic analysis of the 16S rRNA gene sequences revealed that all 191 isolates reported in this study and 43 strains previously isolated were affiliated with the family Halobacteriaceae and classified to 18 genera. Haloferax was the most frequently isolated genus (~47 %), followed by Halobacterium spp. (~12 %), and Halorubrum spp. (~11 %). Highest culturable diversity was detected in Brâncoveanu Lake, the oldest and saltiest of all studied lakes, while the opposite was observed in the most stable and least human-impacted Fără Fund Lake. One strain from Ursu Lake might possibly constitute a novel Halorubrum species as shown by phylogenetic analysis. Several haloarchaeal taxa recently described in Asian (i.e., Iran, China) saline systems were also identified as inhabiting the Transylvanian salt lakes thus expanding our knowledege on the geographic distribution of Halobacteriaceae. PMID:25680859

  17. Characterization and antimicrobial potential of extremely halophilic archaea isolated from hypersaline environments of the Algerian Sahara.

    PubMed

    Quadri, Inès; Hassani, Imene Ikrame; l'Haridon, Stéphane; Chalopin, Morgane; Hacène, Hocine; Jebbar, Mohamed

    2016-01-01

    Halophilic archaea were isolated from different chotts and sebkha, dry salt lakes and salt flat respectively, of the Algerian Sahara and characterized using phenotypic and phylogenetic approaches. From 102 extremely halophilic strains isolated, forty three were selected and studied. These strains were also screened for their antagonistic potential and the production of hydrolytic enzymes. Sequencing of the 16S rRNA genes and phylogenetic analysis allowed the identification of 10 archaeal genera within the class Halobacteria: Natrinema (13 strains), Natrialba (12 strains), Haloarcula (4 strains), Halopiger (4 strains), Haloterrigena (3 strains), Halorubrum (2 strains), Halostagnicola (2 strains), Natronococcus, Halogeometricum and Haloferax (1 strain each). The most common producers of antimicrobial compounds belong to the genus Natrinema while the most hydrolytic isolates, with combined production of several enzymes, belong to the genus Natrialba. The strain affiliated to Halopiger djelfamassilliensis was found to produce some substances of interest (halocins, anti-Candida, enzymes). After partial purification and characterization of one of the strains Natrinema gari QI1, we found similarities between the antimicrobial compound and the halocin C8. Therefore, the gene encoding halocin C8 was amplified and sequenced. PMID:27242149

  18. Carotenoid Production by Halophilic Archaea Under Different Culture Conditions.

    PubMed

    Calegari-Santos, Rossana; Diogo, Ricardo Alexandre; Fontana, José Domingos; Bonfim, Tania Maria Bordin

    2016-05-01

    Carotenoids are pigments that may be used as colorants and antioxidants in food, pharmaceutical, and cosmetic industries. Since they also benefit human health, great efforts have been undertaken to search for natural sources of carotenoids, including microbial ones. The optimization of culture conditions to increase carotenoid yield is one of the strategies used to minimize the high cost of carotenoid production by microorganisms. Halophilic archaea are capable of producing carotenoids according to culture conditions. Their main carotenoid is bacterioruberin with 50 carbon atoms. In fact, the carotenoid has important biological functions since it acts as cell membrane reinforcement and it protects the microorganism against DNA damaging agents. Moreover, carotenoid extracts from halophilic archaea have shown high antioxidant capacity. Therefore, current review summarizes the effect of different culture conditions such as salt and carbon source concentrations in the medium, light incidence, and oxygen tension on carotenoid production by halophilic archaea and the strategies such as optimization methodology and two-stage cultivation already used to increase the carotenoid yield of these microorganisms. PMID:26750123

  19. On the Response of Halophilic Archaea to Space Conditions

    PubMed Central

    Leuko, Stefan; Rettberg, Petra; Pontifex, Ashleigh L.; Burns, Brendan P.

    2014-01-01

    Microorganisms are ubiquitous and can be found in almost every habitat and ecological niche on Earth. They thrive and survive in a broad spectrum of environments and adapt to rapidly changing external conditions. It is of great interest to investigate how microbes adapt to different extreme environments and with modern human space travel, we added a new extreme environment: outer space. Within the last 50 years, technology has provided tools for transporting microbial life beyond Earth’s protective shield in order to study in situ responses to selected conditions of space. This review will focus on halophilic archaea, as, due to their ability to survive in extremes, they are often considered a model group of organisms to study responses to the harsh conditions associated with space. We discuss ground-based simulations, as well as space experiments, utilizing archaea, examining responses and/or resistance to the effects of microgravity and UV in particular. Several halophilic archaea (e.g., Halorubrum chaoviator) have been exposed to simulated and actual space conditions and their survival has been determined as well as the protective effects of halite shown. Finally, the intriguing potential of archaea to survive on other planets or embedded in a meteorite is postulated. PMID:25370029

  20. On the response of halophilic archaea to space conditions.

    PubMed

    Leuko, Stefan; Rettberg, Petra; Pontifex, Ashleigh L; Burns, Brendan P

    2014-01-01

    Microorganisms are ubiquitous and can be found in almost every habitat and ecological niche on Earth. They thrive and survive in a broad spectrum of environments and adapt to rapidly changing external conditions. It is of great interest to investigate how microbes adapt to different extreme environments and with modern human space travel, we added a new extreme environment: outer space. Within the last 50 years, technology has provided tools for transporting microbial life beyond Earth's protective shield in order to study in situ responses to selected conditions of space. This review will focus on halophilic archaea, as, due to their ability to survive in extremes, they are often considered a model group of organisms to study responses to the harsh conditions associated with space. We discuss ground-based simulations, as well as space experiments, utilizing archaea, examining responses and/or resistance to the effects of microgravity and UV in particular. Several halophilic archaea (e.g., Halorubrum chaoviator) have been exposed to simulated and actual space conditions and their survival has been determined as well as the protective effects of halite shown. Finally, the intriguing potential of archaea to survive on other planets or embedded in a meteorite is postulated. PMID:25370029

  1. Analysis of protein solvent interactions in glucose dehydrogenase from the extreme halophile Haloferax mediterranei

    PubMed Central

    Britton, K. Linda; Baker, Patrick J.; Fisher, Martin; Ruzheinikov, Sergey; Gilmour, D. James; Bonete, María-José; Ferrer, Juan; Pire, Carmen; Esclapez, Julia; Rice, David W.

    2006-01-01

    The structure of glucose dehydrogenase from the extreme halophile Haloferax mediterranei has been solved at 1.6-Å resolution under crystallization conditions which closely mimic the “in vivo” intracellular environment. The decoration of the enzyme’s surface with acidic residues is only partially neutralized by bound potassium counterions, which also appear to play a role in substrate binding. The surface shows the expected reduction in hydrophobic character, surprisingly not from changes associated with the loss of exposed hydrophobic residues but rather arising from a loss of lysines consistent with the genome wide-reduction of this residue in extreme halophiles. The structure reveals a highly ordered, multilayered solvation shell that can be seen to be organized into one dominant network covering much of the exposed surface accessible area to an extent not seen in almost any other protein structure solved. This finding is consistent with the requirement of the enzyme to form a protective shell in a dehydrating environment. PMID:16551747

  2. The effects of space relevant environmental factors on halophilic Archaea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leuko, Stefan; Moeller, Ralf; Rettberg, Petra

    Within the last 50 years, space technology has provided tools for transporting terrestrial (microbial) life beyond Earth's protective shield in order to study its responses to selected conditions of space. Microorganisms are ubiquitous and can be found in almost every environment on Earth. They thrive and survive in a broad spectrum of environments and are true masters in adapting to rapidly changing external conditions. Although microorganisms cannot actively grow under the harsh conditions of outer space or other known planets, some microorganisms might be able to survive for a time in space or other planets as dormant, inactive spores or in similar desiccation-resistant resting states, e.g., enclosed in halite crystals or biofilms. Halite crystals are the realm of halophilic Archaea as they have adapted to life at extreme salt concentrations. They can stay entrapped in such crystals for millions of years without losing viability and therefore the family Halobacteriaceae belongs to the group of microorganisms which may survive space travel or may even be found on other planets. Several members of this family have been utilized in space relevant experiments where they were exposed to detrimental environmental conditions such as UV-C radiation, vacuum, temperature cycles (+60(°) C and -25(°) C) and heavy iron bombardment (150 MeV He, 500 MeV Ar and 500 MeV Fe ions). The viability was evaluated by colony forming unit (cfu) counts as well as with the LIFE/DEAD kit. Results revealed that UV-C radiation (up to 1.000 J/m (2) ) has a considerable effect on the viability, whereas the other tested parameters inflict little damage onto the organisms. Repair of UV-C inflicted damage is efficient and several DNA damage repair genes are up-regulated following exposure. Halophilic archaea display a strong resistance against heavy iron bombardment, with dosages of up to 2.000 Gy 500 MeV Fe ions needed to establish a visible effect on the vitality. Genomic integrity after

  3. Carotenoid Analysis of Halophilic Archaea by Resonance Raman Spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marshall, Craig P.; Leuko, Stefan; Coyle, Candace M.; Walter, Malcolm R.; Burns, Brendan P.; Neilan, Brett A.

    2007-08-01

    Recently, halite and sulfate evaporate rocks have been discovered on Mars by the NASA rovers, Spirit and Opportunity. It is reasonable to propose that halophilic microorganisms could have potentially flourished in these settings. If so, biomolecules found in microorganisms adapted to high salinity and basic pH environments on Earth may be reliable biomarkers for detecting life on Mars. Therefore, we investigated the potential of Resonance Raman (RR) spectroscopy to detect biomarkers derived from microorganisms adapted to hypersaline environments. RR spectra were acquired using 488.0 and 514.5 nm excitation from a variety of halophilic archaea, including Halobacterium salinarum NRC-1, Halococcus morrhuae, and Natrinema pallidum. It was clearly demonstrated that RR spectra enhance the chromophore carotenoid molecules in the cell membrane with respect to the various protein and lipid cellular components. RR spectra acquired from all halophilic archaea investigated contained major features at approximately 1000, 1152, and 1505 cm-1. The bands at 1505 cm-1 and 1152 cm-1 are due to in-phase C=C (ν1 ) and C-C stretching ( ν2 ) vibrations of the polyene chain in carotenoids. Additionally, in-plane rocking modes of CH3 groups attached to the polyene chain coupled with C-C bonds occur in the 1000 cm-1 region. We also investigated the RR spectral differences between bacterioruberin and bacteriorhodopsin as another potential biomarker for hypersaline environments. By comparison, the RR spectrum acquired from bacteriorhodopsin is much more complex and contains modes that can be divided into four groups: the C=C stretches (1600-1500 cm-1), the CCH in-plane rocks (1400-1250 cm-1), the C-C stretches (1250-1100 cm-1), and the hydrogen out-of-plane wags (1000-700 cm-1). RR spectroscopy was shown to be a useful tool for the analysis and remote in situ detection of carotenoids from halophilic archaea without the need for large sample sizes and complicated extractions, which are

  4. Halophilic 20S Proteasomes of the Archaeon Haloferax volcanii: Purification, Characterization, and Gene Sequence Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Heather L.; Aldrich, Henry C.; Maupin-Furlow, Julie

    1999-01-01

    A 20S proteasome, composed of α1 and β subunits arranged in a barrel-shaped structure of four stacked rings, was purified from a halophilic archaeon Haloferax volcanii. The predominant peptide-hydrolyzing activity of the 600-kDa α1β-proteasome on synthetic substrates was cleavage carboxyl to hydrophobic residues (chymotrypsin-like [CL] activity) and was optimal at 2 M NaCl, pH 7.7 to 9.5, and 75°C. The α1β-proteasome also hydrolyzed insulin B-chain protein. Removal of NaCl inactivated the CL activity of the α1β-proteasome and dissociated the complex into monomers. Rapid equilibration of the monomers into buffer containing 2 M NaCl facilitated their reassociation into fully active α1β-proteasomes of 600 kDa. However, long-term incubation of the halophilic proteasome in the absence of salt resulted in hydrolysis and irreversible inactivation of the enzyme. Thus, the isolated proteasome has unusual salt requirements which distinguish it from any proteasome which has been described. Comparison of the β-subunit protein sequence with the sequence deduced from the gene revealed that a 49-residue propeptide is removed to expose a highly conserved N-terminal threonine which is proposed to serve as the catalytic nucleophile and primary proton acceptor during peptide bond hydrolysis. Consistent with this mechanism, the known proteasome inhibitors carbobenzoxyl-leucinyl-leucinyl-leucinal-H (MG132) and N-acetyl-leucinyl-leucinyl-norleucinal (calpain inhibitor I) were found to inhibit the CL activity of the H. volcanii proteasome (Ki = 0.2 and 8 μM, respectively). In addition to the genes encoding the α1 and β subunits, a gene encoding a second α-type proteasome protein (α2) was identified. All three genes coding for the proteasome subunits were mapped in the chromosome and found to be unlinked. Modification of the methods used to purify the α1β-proteasome resulted in the copurification of the α2 protein with the α1 and β subunits in nonstoichometric ratios

  5. Phylogenetic analyses of some extremely halophilic archaea isolated from Dead Sea water, determined on the basis of their 16S rRNA sequences.

    PubMed

    Arahal, D R; Dewhirst, F E; Paster, B J; Volcani, B E; Ventosa, A

    1996-10-01

    Twenty-two extremely halophilic aerobic archaeal strains were isolated from enrichments prepared from Dead Sea water samples collected 57 years ago. The isolates were phenotypically clustered into five different groups, and a representative from each group was chosen for further study. Almost the entire sequences of the 16S rRNA genes of these representatives, and of Haloarcula hispanica ATCC 33960, were determined to establish their phylogenetic positions. The sequences of these strains were compared to previously published sequences of 27 reference halophilic archaea (members of the family Halobacteriaceae) and two other archaea, Methanobacterium formicicum DSM 1312 and Methanospirillum hungatei DSM 864. Phylogenetic analysis using approximately 1,400 base comparisons of 16S rRNA-encoding gene sequences demonstrated that the five isolates clustered closely to species belonging to three different genera--Haloferax, Halobacterium, and Haloarcula. Strains E1 and E8 were closely related and identified as members of the species Haloferax volcanii, and strain E12 was closely related and identified as a member of the species Halobacterium salinarum. However, strains E2 and E11 clustered in the Haloarcula branch with Haloarcula hispanica as the closest relative at 98.9 and 98.8% similarity, respectively. Strains E2 and E11 could represent two new species of the genus Haloarcula. However, because strains of these two new species were isolated from a single source, they will not be named until additional strains are isolated from other sources and fully characterized. PMID:8837434

  6. Halophilic Archaea determined from geothermal steam vent aerosols.

    PubMed

    Ellis, Dean G; Bizzoco, Richard W; Kelley, Scott T

    2008-06-01

    Hydrothermal vents, known as 'fumaroles', are ubiquitous features of geothermal areas. Although their geology has been extensively characterized, little is known about the subsurface microbial ecology of fumaroles largely because of the difficulty in collecting sufficient numbers of cells from boiling steam water for DNA extraction and culture isolation. Here we describe the first collection, molecular analysis and isolation of microbes from fumarole steam waters in Russia (Kamchatka) and the USA (Hawaii, New Mexico, California and Wyoming). Surprisingly, the steam vent waters from all the fumaroles contained halophilic Archaea closely related to the Haloarcula spp. found in non-geothermal salt mats, saline soils, brine pools and salt lakes around the world. Microscopic cell counting estimated the cell dispersal rate at approximately 1.6 x 10(9) cells year(-1) from a single fumarole. We also managed to enrich microbes in high-salt media from every vent sample, and to isolate Haloarcula from a Yellowstone vent in a 20% salt medium after a month-long incubation, demonstrating both salt tolerance and viability of cells collected from high-temperature steam. Laboratory tests determined that microbes enriched in salt media survived temperatures greater than 75 degrees C for between 5 and 30 min during the collection process. Hawaiian fumaroles proved to contain the greatest diversity of halophilic Archaea with four new lineages that may belong to uncultured haloarchaeal genera. This high diversity may have resulted from the leaching of salts and minerals through the highly porous volcanic rock, creating a chemically complex saline subsurface. PMID:18331336

  7. Development of pyrF-based gene knockout systems for genome-wide manipulation of the archaea Haloferax mediterranei and Haloarcula hispanica.

    PubMed

    Liu, Hailong; Han, Jing; Liu, Xiaoqing; Zhou, Jian; Xiang, Hua

    2011-06-20

    The haloarchaea Haloferax mediterranei and Haloarcula hispanica are both polyhydroxyalkanoate producers in the domain Archaea, and they are becoming increasingly attractive for research and biotechnology due to their unique genetic and metabolic features. To accelerate their genome-level genetic and metabolic analyses, we have developed specific and highly efficient gene knockout systems for these two haloarchaea. These gene knockout systems consist of a suicide plasmid vector with the pyrF gene as the selection marker and a uracil auxotrophic haloarchaeon (ΔpyrF) as the host. For in-frame deletion of a target gene, the suicide plasmid carrying the flanking region of the target gene was transferred into the corresponding ΔpyrF host. After positive selection of the single-crossover integration recombinants (pop-in) on AS-168SY medium without uracil and counterselection of the double-crossover pyrF-excised recombinants (pop-out) with 5-fluoroorotic acid (5-FOA), the target gene knockout mutants were confirmed by PCR and Southern blot analysis. We have demonstrated the effectiveness of these systems by knocking out the crtB gene which encodes a phytoene synthase in these haloarchaea. In conclusion, these well-developed knockout systems would greatly accelerate the functional genomic research of these halophilic archaea. PMID:21703550

  8. Anaerobic Metabolism in Haloferax Genus: Denitrification as Case of Study.

    PubMed

    Torregrosa-Crespo, J; Martínez-Espinosa, R M; Esclapez, J; Bautista, V; Pire, C; Camacho, M; Richardson, D J; Bonete, M J

    2016-01-01

    A number of species of Haloferax genus (halophilic archaea) are able to grow microaerobically or even anaerobically using different alternative electron acceptors such as fumarate, nitrate, chlorate, dimethyl sulphoxide, sulphide and/or trimethylamine. This metabolic capability is also shown by other species of the Halobacteriaceae and Haloferacaceae families (Archaea domain) and it has been mainly tested by physiological studies where cell growth is observed under anaerobic conditions in the presence of the mentioned compounds. This work summarises the main reported features on anaerobic metabolism in the Haloferax, one of the better described haloarchaeal genus with significant potential uses in biotechnology and bioremediation. Special attention has been paid to denitrification, also called nitrate respiration. This pathway has been studied so far from Haloferax mediterranei and Haloferax denitrificans mainly from biochemical point of view (purification and characterisation of the enzymes catalysing the two first reactions). However, gene expression and gene regulation is far from known at the time of writing this chapter. PMID:27134021

  9. Taxonomic study of extreme halophilic archaea isolated from the "Salar de Atacama", Chile.

    PubMed

    Lizama, C; Monteoliva-Sánchez, M; Prado, B; Ramos-Cormenzana, A; Weckesser, J; Campos, V

    2001-11-01

    A large number of halophilic bacteria were isolated in 1984-1992 from the Atacama Saltern (North of Chile). For this study 82 strains of extreme halophilic archaea were selected. The characterization was performed by using the phenotypic characters including morphological, physiological, biochemical, nutritional and antimicrobial susceptibility test. The results, together with those from reference strains, were subjected to numerical analysis, using the Simple Matching (S(SM)) coefficient and clustered by the unweighted pair group method of association (UPGMA). Fifteen phena were obtained at an 70% similarity level. The results obtained reveal a high diversity among the halophilic archaea isolated. Representative strains from the phena were chosen to determine their DNA base composition and the percentage of DNA-DNA similarity compared to reference strains. The 16S rRNA studies showed that some of these strains constitutes a new taxa of extreme halophilic archaea. PMID:11822685

  10. Bipyrimidine Signatures as a Photoprotective Genome Strategy in G + C-rich Halophilic Archaea.

    PubMed

    Jones, Daniel L; Baxter, Bonnie K

    2016-01-01

    Halophilic archaea experience high levels of ultraviolet (UV) light in their environments and demonstrate resistance to UV irradiation. DNA repair systems and carotenoids provide UV protection but do not account for the high resistance observed. Herein, we consider genomic signatures as an additional photoprotective strategy. The predominant forms of UV-induced DNA damage are cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers, most notoriously thymine dimers (T^Ts), which form at adjacent Ts. We tested whether the high G + C content seen in halophilic archaea serves a photoprotective function through limiting T nucleotides, and thus T^T lesions. However, this speculation overlooks the other bipyrimidine sequences, all of which capable of forming photolesions to varying degrees. Therefore, we designed a program to determine the frequencies of the four bipyrimidine pairs (5' to 3': TT, TC, CT, and CC) within genomes of halophilic archaea and four other randomized sample groups for comparison. The outputs for each sampled genome were weighted by the intrinsic photoreactivities of each dinucleotide pair. Statistical methods were employed to investigate intergroup differences. Our findings indicate that the UV-resistance seen in halophilic archaea can be attributed in part to a genomic strategy: high G + C content and the resulting bipyrimidine signature reduces the genomic photoreactivity. PMID:27598206

  11. Survival of Halophilic Archaea in the Stratosphere as a Mars Analog: A Transcriptomic Approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DasSarma, S.; DasSarma, P.; Laye, V.; Harvey, J.; Reid, C.; Shultz, J.; Yarborough, A.; Lamb, A.; Koske-Phillips, A.; Herbst, A.; Molina, F.; Grah, O.; Phillips, T.

    2016-05-01

    On Earth, halophilic Archaea tolerate multiple extreme conditions similar to those on Mars. In order to study their survival, we launched live cultures into Earth’s stratosphere on helium balloons. The effects on survival and transcriptomes were interrogated in the lab.

  12. Anaerobiosis inhibits gas vesicle formation in halophilic Archaea.

    PubMed

    Hechler, Torsten; Pfeifer, Felicitas

    2009-01-01

    The effect of anaerobiosis on the gas vesicle formation was investigated in three Halobacterium salinarum strains, Haloferax mediterranei and in Haloferax volcanii transformants. All these strains significantly reduced gas vesicle formation or lacked these structures under anoxic conditions. When grown by arginine fermentation, Hbt. salinarum PHH4 lacked gas vesicles, whereas Hbt. salinarum PHH1 and NRC-1 contained 5-20 small gas vesicles arranged in two to three aggregates per cell instead of the 30-80 gas vesicles present under oxic conditions. The enlargement presumably stopped due to a depletion of Gvp proteins. Also Hfx. mediterranei and Hfx. volcanii transformants lacked gas vesicles under anoxic growth and yielded a 10-fold reduced gvp transcription. Even the gas vesicle-overproducing DeltaD transformants did not form gas vesicles under anoxic conditions, demonstrating that the repressing protein GvpD was not involved. The presence of large amounts of GvpA implied that the assembly of the gas vesicles was inhibited. When Hbt. salinarum PHH1 and NRC-1 were grown with dimethyl sulphoxide or trimethylamine N-oxid under anoxic conditions the number but not the size of gas vesicles was reduced. This was in contrast to the previously reported overproduction of gas vesicles in NRC-1 that turned out to depend on the citrate-containing medium used for growth. PMID:19007418

  13. In vivo characterization of the homing endonuclease within the polB gene in the halophilic archaeon Haloferax volcanii.

    PubMed

    Naor, Adit; Lazary, Rona; Barzel, Adi; Papke, R Thane; Gophna, Uri

    2011-01-01

    Inteins are parasitic genetic elements, analogous to introns that excise themselves at the protein level by self-splicing, allowing the formation of functional non-disrupted proteins. Many inteins contain a homing endonuclease (HEN) gene, and rely on its activity for horizontal propagation. In the halophilic archaeon, Haloferax volcanii, the gene encoding DNA polymerase B (polB) contains an intein with an annotated but uncharacterized HEN. Here we examine the activity of the polB HEN in vivo, within its natural archaeal host. We show that this HEN is highly active, and able to insert the intein into both a chromosomal target and an extra-chromosomal plasmid target, by gene conversion. We also demonstrate that the frequency of its incorporation depends on the length of the flanking homologous sequences around the target site, reflecting its dependence on the homologous recombination machinery. Although several evolutionary models predict that the presence of an intein involves a change in the fitness of the host organism, our results show that a strain deleted for the intein sequence shows no significant changes in growth rate compared to the wild type. PMID:21283796

  14. Effect of organic solvents on the activity and stability of halophilic alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH2) from Haloferax volcanii.

    PubMed

    Alsafadi, Diya; Paradisi, Francesca

    2013-01-01

    The effect of various organic solvents on the catalytic activity, stability and substrate specificity of alchohol dehydrogenase from Haloferax volcanii (HvADH2) was evaluated. The HvADH2 showed remarkable stability and catalysed the reaction in aqueous-organic medium containing dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) and methanol (MeOH). Tetrahydrofuran and acetonitrile were also investigated and adversely affected the stability of the enzyme. High concentration of salt, essential to maintain the enzymatic activity and structural integrity of the halophilic enzyme under standard conditions may be partially replaced by DMSO and MeOH. The presence of organic solvents did not induce gross changes in substrate specificity. DMSO offered a protective effect for the stability of the enzyme at nonoptimal pHs such as 6 and 10. Salt and solvent effects on the HvADH2 conformation and folding were examined through fluorescence spectroscopy. The fluorescence findings were consistent with the activity and stability results and corroborated the denaturing properties of some solvents. The intrinsic tolerance of this enzyme to organic solvent makes it highly attractive to industry. PMID:23179592

  15. Exploring the diversity of extremely halophilic archaea in food-grade salts.

    PubMed

    Henriet, Olivier; Fourmentin, Jeanne; Delincé, Bruno; Mahillon, Jacques

    2014-11-17

    Salting is one of the oldest means of food preservation: adding salt decreases water activity and inhibits microbial development. However, salt is also a source of living bacteria and archaea. The occurrence and diversity of viable archaea in this extreme environment were assessed in 26 food-grade salts from worldwide origin by cultivation on four culture media. Additionally, metagenomic analysis of 16S rRNA gene was performed on nine salts. Viable archaea were observed in 14 salts and colony counts reached more than 10(5)CFU per gram in three salts. All archaeal isolates identified by 16S rRNA gene sequencing belonged to the Halobacteriaceae family and were related to 17 distinct genera among which Haloarcula, Halobacterium and Halorubrum were the most represented. High-throughput sequencing generated extremely different profiles for each salt. Four of them contained a single major genus (Halorubrum, Halonotius or Haloarcula) while the others had three or more genera of similar occurrence. The number of distinct genera per salt ranged from 21 to 27. Halorubrum had a significant contribution to the archaeal diversity in seven salts; this correlates with its frequent occurrence in crystallization ponds. On the contrary, Haloquadratum walsbyi, the halophilic archaea most commonly found in solar salterns, was a minor actor of the food-grade salt diversity. Our results indicate that the occurrence and diversity of viable halophilic archaea in salt can be important, while their fate in the gastrointestinal tract after ingestion remains largely unknown. PMID:25217724

  16. Phylogenetic Diversities and Community Structure of Members of the Extremely Halophilic Archaea (Order Halobacteriales) in Multiple Saline Sediment Habitats

    PubMed Central

    Youssef, Noha H.; Ashlock-Savage, Kristen N.

    2012-01-01

    We investigated the phylogenetic diversity and community structure of members of the halophilic Archaea (order Halobacteriales) in five distinct sediment habitats that experience various levels of salinity and salinity fluctuations (sediments from Great Salt Plains and Zodletone Spring in Oklahoma, mangrove tree sediments in Puerto Rico, sediment underneath salt heaps in a salt-processing plant, and sediments from the Great Salt Lake northern arm) using Halobacteriales-specific 16S rRNA gene primers. Extremely diverse Halobacteriales communities were encountered in all habitats, with 27 (Zodletone) to 37 (mangrove) different genera identified per sample, out of the currently described 38 Halobacteriales genera. With the exception of Zodletone Spring, where the prevalent geochemical conditions are extremely inhospitable to Halobacteriales survival, habitats with fluctuating salinity levels were more diverse than permanently saline habitats. Sequences affiliated with the recently described genera Halogranum, Halolamina, Haloplanus, Halosarcina, and Halorientalis, in addition to the genera Halorubrum, Haloferax, and Halobacterium, were among the most abundant and ubiquitous genera, suggesting a wide distribution of these poorly studied genera in saline sediments. The Halobacteriales sediment communities analyzed in this study were more diverse than and completely distinct from communities from typical hypersaline water bodies. Finally, sequences unaffiliated with currently described genera represented a small fraction of the total Halobacteriales communities, ranging between 2.5% (Zodletone) to 7.0% (mangrove and Great Salt Lake). However, these novel sequences were characterized by remarkably high levels of alpha and beta diversities, suggesting the presence of an enormous, yet-untapped supply of novel Halobacteriales genera within the rare biosphere of various saline ecosystems. PMID:22179255

  17. Solid-state fermentation as a potential technique for esterase/lipase production by halophilic archaea.

    PubMed

    Martin del Campo, Martha; Camacho, Rosa M; Mateos-Díaz, Juan C; Müller-Santos, Marcelo; Córdova, Jesus; Rodríguez, Jorge A

    2015-11-01

    Halophilic archaea are extremophiles, adapted to high-salt environments, showing a big biotechnological potential as enzyme, lipids and pigments producers. Four inert supports (perlite, vermiculite, polyurethane foam and glass fiber) were employed for solid-state fermentation (SSF) of the halophilic archaeon Natronococcus sp. TC6 to investigate biomass and esterase production. A very low esterase activity and high water activity were observed when perlite, vermiculite and polyurethane were used as supports. When glass fiber was employed, an important moisture loss was observed (8.6%). Moreover, moisture retention was improved by mixing polyurethane and glass fiber, resulting in maximal biomass and esterase production. Three halophilic archaea: Natronococcus sp. TC6, Halobacterium sp. NRC-1 and Haloarcula marismortui were cultured by submerged fermentation (SmF) and by SSF; an improvement of 1.3- to 6.2-fold was observed in the biomass and esterase production when SSF was used. Growth was not homogeneous in the mixture, but was predominant in the glass fiber thus was probably because the glass fiber provides a holder to the cells, while the polyurethane acts as an impregnation medium reservoir. To the best of our knowledge, this work is the first report on haloarchaea cultivation by SSF aiming biomass and esterase/lipase activity production. PMID:26369647

  18. Extremely halophilic archaea from ancient salt sediments and their long term survival.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stan-Lotter, Helga; Fendrihan, Sergiu; Dornmayr-Pfaffenhuemer, Marion

    Halophilic archaebacteria (haloarchaea) thrive in environments with salt concentrations approaching saturation, such as natural brines, marine solar salterns and alkaline salt lakes; they have also been isolated from rock salt of great geological age (195-250 million years) and some of those strains were described as novel species (1). The cells survived perhaps while being enclosed within small fluid inclusions in the halite. When simulating the embedding process of haloarchaea in laboratory-grown salt crystals, cells accumulated preferentially in fluid inclusions, as could be demonstrated by pre-staining with fluorescent dyes. The issue of extreme long term microbial survival in rock salt has considerable implications for the search for extraterrestrial life. Halite has been found in Martian meteorites, salts are present on the Martian surface and there is good evidence for a salty ocean on the Jovian moon Europa. Therefore the search for halophilic prokaryotic life in such environments appears plausible. The development of detection methods for subsurface haloarchaea, which might also be applicable to samples from future missions to space, is important and some examples such as fluorescence microscopy methods with novel dyes will be described. (1) Fendrihan, S., Legat, A., Gruber, C., Pfaffenhuemer, M., Weidler, G., Gerbl, F., Stan- Lotter, H. (2006) Extremely halophilic archaea and the issue of long term microbial survival. Reviews in Environmental Science and Bio/technology 5, 1569-1605.

  19. Halophilic Archaea Cultivated from Surface Sterilized Middle-Late Eocene Rock Salt Are Polyploid

    PubMed Central

    Jaakkola, Salla T.; Zerulla, Karolin; Guo, Qinggong; Liu, Ying; Ma, Hongling; Yang, Chunhe; Bamford, Dennis H.; Chen, Xiangdong; Soppa, Jörg; Oksanen, Hanna M.

    2014-01-01

    Live bacteria and archaea have been isolated from several rock salt deposits of up to hundreds of millions of years of age from all around the world. A key factor affecting their longevity is the ability to keep their genomic DNA intact, for which efficient repair mechanisms are needed. Polyploid microbes are known to have an increased resistance towards mutations and DNA damage, and it has been suggested that microbes from deeply buried rock salt would carry several copies of their genomes. Here, cultivable halophilic microbes were isolated from a surface sterilized middle-late Eocene (38–41 million years ago) rock salt sample, drilled from the depth of 800 m at Yunying salt mine, China. Eight unique isolates were obtained, which represented two haloarchaeal genera, Halobacterium and Halolamina. We used real-time PCR to show that our isolates are polyploid, with genome copy numbers of 11–14 genomes per cell in exponential growth phase. The ploidy level was slightly downregulated in stationary growth phase, but the cells still had an average genome copy number of 6–8. The polyploidy of halophilic archaea living in ancient rock salt might be a factor explaining how these organisms are able to overcome the challenge of prolonged survival during their entombment. PMID:25338080

  20. Halophilic archaea cultivated from surface sterilized middle-late eocene rock salt are polyploid.

    PubMed

    Jaakkola, Salla T; Zerulla, Karolin; Guo, Qinggong; Liu, Ying; Ma, Hongling; Yang, Chunhe; Bamford, Dennis H; Chen, Xiangdong; Soppa, Jörg; Oksanen, Hanna M

    2014-01-01

    Live bacteria and archaea have been isolated from several rock salt deposits of up to hundreds of millions of years of age from all around the world. A key factor affecting their longevity is the ability to keep their genomic DNA intact, for which efficient repair mechanisms are needed. Polyploid microbes are known to have an increased resistance towards mutations and DNA damage, and it has been suggested that microbes from deeply buried rock salt would carry several copies of their genomes. Here, cultivable halophilic microbes were isolated from a surface sterilized middle-late Eocene (38-41 million years ago) rock salt sample, drilled from the depth of 800 m at Yunying salt mine, China. Eight unique isolates were obtained, which represented two haloarchaeal genera, Halobacterium and Halolamina. We used real-time PCR to show that our isolates are polyploid, with genome copy numbers of 11-14 genomes per cell in exponential growth phase. The ploidy level was slightly downregulated in stationary growth phase, but the cells still had an average genome copy number of 6-8. The polyploidy of halophilic archaea living in ancient rock salt might be a factor explaining how these organisms are able to overcome the challenge of prolonged survival during their entombment. PMID:25338080

  1. Halophilic archaea on Earth and in space: growth and survival under extreme conditions.

    PubMed

    Oren, Aharon

    2014-12-13

    Salts are abundant on Mars, and any liquid water that is present or may have been present on the planet is expected to be hypersaline. Halophilic archaea (family Halobacteriaceae) are the microorganisms best adapted to life at extremes of salinity on Earth. This paper reviews the properties of the Halobacteriaceae that may make the group good candidates for life also on Mars. Many species resist high UV and gamma radiation levels; one species has survived exposure to vacuum and radiation during a space flight; and there is at least one psychrotolerant species. Halophilic archaea may survive for millions of years within brine inclusions in salt crystals. Many species have different modes of anaerobic metabolism, and some can use light as an energy source using the light-driven proton pump bacteriorhodopsin. They are also highly tolerant to perchlorate, recently shown to be present in Martian soils, and some species can even use perchlorate as an electron acceptor to support anaerobic growth. The presence of characteristic carotenoid pigments (α-bacterioruberin and derivatives) makes the Halobacteriaceae easy to identify by Raman spectroscopy. Thus, if present on Mars, such organisms may be detected by Raman instrumentation planned to explore Mars during the upcoming ExoMars mission. PMID:25368347

  2. Isolation and characterization of extremely halophilic CO-oxidizing Euryarchaeota from hypersaline cinders, sediments and soils and description of a novel CO oxidizer, Haloferax namakaokahaiae Mke2.3T, sp. nov.

    PubMed

    McDuff, S; King, G M; Neupane, S; Myers, M R

    2016-04-01

    The phylogenetic affiliations of organisms responsible for aerobic CO oxidation in hypersaline soils and sediments were assessed using media containing 3.8 M NaCl. CO-oxidizing strains of the euryarchaeotes, Haloarcula, Halorubrum, Haloterrigena and Natronorubrum, were isolated from the Bonneville Salt Flats (UT) and Atacama Desert salterns (Chile). A halophilic euryarchaeote, Haloferax strain Mke2.3(T), was isolated from Hawai'i Island saline cinders. Haloferax strain Mke2.3(T) was most closely related to Haloferax larsenii JCM 13917(T) (97.0% 16S rRNA sequence identity). It grew with a limited range of substrates, and oxidized CO at a headspace concentration of 0.1%. However, it did not grow with CO as a sole carbon and energy source. Its ability to oxidize CO, its polar lipid composition, substrate utilization and numerous other traits distinguished it from H. larsenii JCM 13917(T), and supported designation of the novel isolate as Haloferax namakaokahaiae Mke2.3(T), sp. nov (= DSM 29988, = LMG 29162). CO oxidation was also documented for 'Natronorubrum thiooxidans' HG1 (Sorokin, Tourova and Muyzer 2005), N. bangense (Xu, Zhou and Tian 1999) and N. sulfidifaciens AD2(T) (Cui et al. 2007). Collectively, these results established a previously unsuspected capacity for extremely halophilic aerobic CO oxidation, and indicated that the trait might be widespread among the Halobacteriaceae, and occur in a wide range of hypersaline habitats. PMID:26906098

  3. [Biodiversity of halophilic archaea isolated from two salt lakes in Xin-Jiang region of China].

    PubMed

    Cui, Heng-Lin; Yang, Yong; Dilbr, Tohty; Zhou, Pei-Jin; Liu, Shuang-Jiang

    2006-04-01

    There are more than 1000 salt lakes situated in northern and western regions of China and 790 of these salt lakes are in Xinjiang Uigur Autonomous Region and Qinghai, Tibet, Inner Mongolia. To better understand halophilic archaeal diversity of salt lakes in Xinjiang, water and sediment samples were collected from two salt lakes, namely Aibi salt lake and Aiding salt lake, and the halophilic archaeal diversity of these samples was determined. Totally eighty-six halophilic archeal strains, of which 56 isolated from Aibi salt lake and 30 isolated from Aiding salt lake, were isolated respectively using CM agar medium. All the strains were subjected to 16S rRNA gene sequencing analysis. Similarity analysis based on 16S rRNA gene sequences of all these strains indicated that the isolates from Aibi salt lake belong to 11 different species of genera Haloarcula, Halobacterium, Halorubrum, Haloterrigena, Natrinema and Natronorubrum, and that the isolates from Aiding salt lake belong to 8 different species of genera Haloarcula, Halobiforma, Halorubrum, Haloterrigena, Natrinema. Among the 86 strains, members of Natronorubrum Natrinema, Halorubrum and Haloterrigena, are dominant groups in Aibi salt lake. However, the dominant group in Aibi salt lake are the members of Natrinema, Halorubrum and Haloterrigena. Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA gene sequences indicated that strains ABH13, ABH 14, ABH 15, ABH 18, ABH 31 and ABH 33 may represent a novel species of Natronorubrum; ABH12, ABH32 and AD30 two novel species of Halorubrum; ABH17 and ABH25, ABH51, ABH52, ABH56 two novel species of Haloterrigena respectively; strain ABH19 a novel species of Haloarcula; strain ABHO7 a novel species of Halobacterium. The Shannon-Wiener's index of Aibi salt lake is 1.899, the same index of Aiding salt lake is 1.317, which indicated that the biodiversity of halophilic archaea from Aibi salt lake was slightly higher than that of Aiding salt lake. Different characteristics in pH of salt

  4. Isolation and characterization of halophilic bacteria and archaea from salt ponds in Hangu Saltworks, Tianjin, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deng, Yuangao; Xu, Gaochao; Sui, Liying

    2015-07-01

    A total of 26 isolates were obtained from solar salt ponds of different salinities (100, 150, 200, and 250) in Hangu Saltworks Co. Ltd., Tianjin, China. Phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA gene sequences indicated that five bacteria genera Halomonas, Salinicoccus, Oceanobacillus, Gracibacillus, and Salimicrobium and one archaea genera Halorubrum were present. The genus Halomonas was predominant with eight strains distributed in a salinity range of 100-200, followed by Halorubrum with six strains in salinity 250. Based on the genus and original sampling salinity, eight bacterial and two archaeal isolates were selected for further morphological, physiological, and biochemical characterization. All of the bacterial strains were moderately halophilic with the optimal salinity for growth being either 50 or 100, while two archaeal strains were extremely halophilic with an optimal growth salinity of 200. Additionally, we put forth strain SM.200-5 as a new candidate Salimicrobium species based on the phylogenic analysis of the 16S rRNA gene sequence and its biochemical characteristics when compared with known related species.

  5. Diverse antimicrobial interactions of halophilic archaea and bacteria extend over geographical distances and cross the domain barrier

    PubMed Central

    Atanasova, Nina S; Pietilä, Maija K; Oksanen, Hanna M

    2013-01-01

    The significance of antimicrobial substances, halocins, produced by halophilic archaea and bacteria thriving in hypersaline environments is relatively unknown. It is suggested that their production might increase species diversity and give transient competitive advances to the producer strain. Halocin production is considered to be common among halophilic archaea, but there is a lack of information about halocins produced by bacteria in highly saline environments. We studied the antimicrobial activity of 68 halophilic archaea and 22 bacteria isolated from numerous geographically distant hypersaline environments. Altogether 144 antimicrobial interactions were found between the strains and aside haloarchaea, halophilic bacteria from various genera were identified as halocin producers. Close to 80% of the interactions were detected between microorganisms from different genera and in few cases, even across the domain boundary. Several of the strains produced halocins with a wide inhibitory spectrum as has been observed before. Most of the antimicrobial interactions were found between strains from distant sampling sites indicating that hypersaline environments around the world have similar microorganisms with the potential to produce wide activity range antimicrobials. PMID:23929527

  6. Extremely halophilic archaea from ancient salt sediments and their possible survival in halite fluid inclusions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stan-Lotter, H.; Fendrihan, S.; Gerbl, F. W.; Dornmayr-Pfaffenhuemer, M.; Frethem, C.

    2008-09-01

    Halophilic archaebacteria (haloarchaea) thrive in environments with salt concentrations approaching saturation, such as natural brines, marine solar salterns and alkaline salt lakes; they have also been isolated from ancient subsurface salt sediments of great geological age (195-280 million years) and some of those strains were described as novel species (1). The cells survived perhaps while being enclosed within small fluid inclusions in the halite. The characterization of subsurface microbial life is of astrobiological relevance since extraterrestrial halite has been detected and since microbial life on Mars, if existent, may have retreated into the subsurface. We attempted to simulate the embedding process of extremely halophilic archaea and to analyse any cellular changes which might occur. When enclosing haloarchaea in laboratory grown halite, cells accumulated preferentially in fluid inclusions, as could be demonstrated by pre-staining with fluorescent dyes. With increased time of embedding, rod-shaped cells of Halobacterium salinarum strains were found to assume roundish morphologies. Upon dissolution of the salt crystals, these spheres were stable and viable for months when kept in buffers containing 4 M NaCl. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) following fixation with glutaraldehyde suggested a potentially gradual transformation from rods to spheres. This notion was supported by fluorescence microscopy of Halobacterium cells, following embedding in halite and staining with SYTO 9. One-dimensional protein patterns of rods and spheres, following SDS polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, were similar except that the S-layer protein appeared reduced by about 15 - 20 % in spheres. The reddish-orange pigmentation of spheres was much lighter compared to that of rod-shaped cells, suggesting lowered concentrations of carotenoids; this was confirmed by extraction and spectrometry of pigments. The data suggested that Halobacterium cells are capable of forming specific

  7. Perchlorate and halophilic prokaryotes: implications for possible halophilic life on Mars.

    PubMed

    Oren, Aharon; Elevi Bardavid, Rahel; Mana, Lily

    2014-01-01

    In view of the finding of perchlorate among the salts detected by the Phoenix Lander on Mars, we investigated the relationships of halophilic heterotrophic microorganisms (archaea of the family Halobacteriaceae and the bacterium Halomonas elongata) toward perchlorate. All strains tested grew well in NaCl-based media containing 0.4 M perchlorate, but at the highest perchlorate concentrations, tested cells were swollen or distorted. Some species (Haloferax mediterranei, Haloferax denitrificans, Haloferax gibbonsii, Haloarcula marismortui, Haloarcula vallismortis) could use perchlorate as an electron acceptor for anaerobic growth. Although perchlorate is highly oxidizing, its presence at a concentration of 0.2 M for up to 2 weeks did not negatively affect the ability of a yeast extract-based medium to support growth of the archaeon Halobacterium salinarum. These findings show that presence of perchlorate among the salts on Mars does not preclude the possibility of halophilic life. If indeed the liquid brines that may exist on Mars are inhabited by salt-requiring or salt-tolerant microorganisms similar to the halophiles on Earth, presence of perchlorate may even be stimulatory when it can serve as an electron acceptor for respiratory activity in the anaerobic Martian environment. PMID:24150694

  8. Experimental characterization of Cis-acting elements important for translation and transcription in halophilic archaea.

    PubMed

    Brenneis, Mariam; Hering, Oliver; Lange, Christian; Soppa, Jörg

    2007-12-01

    The basal transcription apparatus of archaea is well characterized. However, much less is known about the mechanisms of transcription termination and translation initation. Recently, experimental determination of the 5'-ends of ten transcripts from Pyrobaculum aerophilum revealed that these are devoid of a 5'-UTR. Bioinformatic analysis indicated that many transcripts of other archaeal species might also be leaderless. The 5'-ends and 3'-ends of 40 transcripts of two haloarchaeal species, Halobacterium salinarum and Haloferax volcanii, have been determined. They were used to characterize the lengths of 5'-UTRs and 3'-UTRs and to deduce consensus sequence-elements for transcription and translation. The experimental approach was complemented with a bioinformatics analysis of the H. salinarum genome sequence. Furthermore, the influence of selected 5'-UTRs and 3'-UTRs on transcript stability and translational efficiency in vivo was characterized using a newly established reporter gene system, gene fusions, and real-time PCR. Consensus sequences for basal promoter elements could be refined and a novel element was discovered. A consensus motif probably important for transcriptional termination was established. All 40 haloarchaeal transcripts analyzed had a 3'-UTR (average size 57 nt), and their 3'-ends were not posttranscriptionally modified. Experimental data and genome analyses revealed that the majority of haloarchaeal transcripts are leaderless, indicating that this is the predominant mode for translation initiation in haloarchaea. Surprisingly, the 5'-UTRs of most leadered transcripts did not contain a Shine-Dalgarno (SD) sequence. A genome analysis indicated that less than 10% of all genes are preceded by a SD sequence and even most proximal genes in operons lack a SD sequence. Seven different leadered transcripts devoid of a SD sequence were efficiently translated in vivo, including artificial 5'-UTRs of random sequences. Thus, an interaction of the 5'-UTRs of

  9. Characterization of halophilic C50 carotenoid-producing archaea isolated from solar saltworks in Bohai Bay, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sui, Liying; Liu, Liangsen; Deng, Yuangao

    2014-11-01

    Halophilic archaea comprise the majority of microorganisms found in hypersaline environments. C50 carotenoids accumulated in archaea cells are considered potential biotechnological products and possess a number of biological functions. Ten red colonies were isolated from brine water in a saltern crystallizer pond of the Hangu Saltworks, China. 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis showed that the colonies belonged to the extremely halophilic archaea genera Halobacterium and Halorubrum. Two representative strains, Halobacterium strain SP-2 and Halorubrum strain SP-4, were selected for further study on the phenotypic characteristics and effects of salinity and pH on accumulation and composition of pigments in their cells. The archaeal strains were isolated and grown in a culture medium prepared by dissolving yeast extract (10 g/L) and acid-hydrolyzed casein (7.5 g/L) into brine water obtained from a local salt pond. Their optimum salinity and pH for growth were 250 and 7, respectively, although pigment accumulation (OD490 / mL broth) was highest at pH 8. In addition, at 150-300 salinity, increasing salinity resulted in decreasing pigment accumulation. Analysis of the UV-Vis spectrum, TLC and HLPC chromatograms showed that C50 carotenoid bacterioruberin is the major pigment in both strains.

  10. Positive and negative tandem mass spectrometric fingerprints of lipids from the halophilic Archaea Haloarcula marismortuis⃞

    PubMed Central

    de Souza, Lauro M.; Müller-Santos, Marcelo; Iacomini, Marcello; Gorin, Philip A. J.; Sassaki, Guilherme L.

    2009-01-01

    Lipids from the extremely halophilic Archaea, Haloarcula marismortui, contain abundant phytanyl diether phospholipids, namely archaetidic acid (AA), archaetidylglycerol (AG), archaetidylglycerosulfate (AGS), with mainly archaetidylglycerophosphate methyl ester (AGP-Me). These were accompanied by a triglycosyl archaeol (TGA), lacking characteristic sulfate groups. Tandem-mass spectrometry was employed to provide fingerprints for identifying these known lipids, as well as small amounts of unsaturated phospholipids. These contained 3 and 6 double bonds in their archaeol moiety, suggested by negative tandem-MS of intact phospholipids, as indicated by differences between their pseudo-molecular ion and specific fragment ions designated as π2. The core ether lipids were confirmed by electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS) as 2,3-di-O-phytanyl-sn-glycerol (C20, C20), which gave rise to a precursor-ion at m/z 660 [M+Li]+, and its fragment ion at m/z 379 [M+Li]+, consistent with mono-O-phytanyl-glycerol. Furthermore, lithiated ions at m/z 654 (MS1), 379 (MS2) and m/z 648 (MS1), 373 (MS2), combined with 1H/13C NMR chemical shifts at δ 5.31-121.6 (C2/2′-H2/2′), 5.08-124.9 (C6/6′-H6/6′) and 5.10-126.0 (10/10′-H10/10′) confirmed the presence of unsaturated homologs of archaeol. We carried out a comprehensive study on the lipids present in cells of H. marismortui. We used positive and negative ESI-MS with tandem-MS, which served as a fingerprint analysis for identifying the majority of component lipids. PMID:19258281

  11. Investigating the Effects of Simulated Space conditions on Novel Extremely Halophilic Archaea: Halovarius Luteus gen. nov., sp. nov.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feshangsaz, Niloofar; Van Loon, ing.. Jack J. W. A.; Nazmi, Kamran; Semsarha, Farid

    2016-07-01

    Studying halophiles from different environments of Earth provide new insights into our search for life in the universe. Haloarchaea show some unique characteristics and physiological adaptations like acidic proteins against harsh environments such as natural brine with salt concentration approaching saturation (5 M) and regions with low active water. These properties make haloarchaea interesting candidate for astrobiological studies. Halovarius luteus gen. nov., sp. nov. a novel extremely halophilic archaeon from Urmia salt lake, in Iran has been chosen to explore its resistance against a series of extreme conditions. The aim of this study is to assess the resistance of strain DA50T under the effects of simulated space conditions like simulated microgravity, hypergravity, and desiccation. In this paper we will discuss the results of these studies where we specifically focus on changes in carotenoid pigments production and whole cell proteome. This is the first report of very novel Iranian archaea in response to extreme space conditions. The pigments were extracted by acetone and methanol. Pigments were analyzed by scanning the absorbance spectrum in the UV-VIS spectrophotometer. And they were separated by TLC. Whole protein from cell lysate supernatant was extracted after lysis with Bacterial Protein Extraction Reagent and fractionated by RP-HPLC using C18 column. Proteome analyzed by electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE), and MALDI-TOF. Carotenoid pigments are formed under different extreme conditions such as dry environment and gravitational changes. Also the protein composition exhibits alterations after exposure to the same conditions. Our conclusion is that pigments and proteins formation depend on the growth circumstances. Halophiles use this as an adaptation to survive under different environmental conditions.

  12. Halophilic Archaea: Life with Desiccation, Radiation and Oligotrophy over Geological Times.

    PubMed

    Stan-Lotter, Helga; Fendrihan, Sergiu

    2015-01-01

    Halophilic archaebacteria (Haloarchaea) can survive extreme desiccation, starvation and radiation, sometimes apparently for millions of years. Several of the strategies that are involved appear specific for Haloarchaea (for example, the formation of halomucin, survival in fluid inclusions of halite), and some are known from other prokaryotes (dwarfing of cells, reduction of ATP). Several newly-discovered haloarchaeal strategies that were inferred to possibly promote long-term survival-halomucin, polyploidy, usage of DNA as a phosphate storage polymer, production of spherical dormant stages-remain to be characterized in detail. More information on potential strategies is desirable, since evidence for the presence of halite on Mars and on several moons in the solar system increased interest in halophiles with respect to the search for extraterrestrial life. This review deals in particular with novel findings and hypotheses on haloarchaeal long-term survival. PMID:26226005

  13. Halophilic Archaea: Life with Desiccation, Radiation and Oligotrophy over Geological Times

    PubMed Central

    Stan-Lotter, Helga; Fendrihan, Sergiu

    2015-01-01

    Halophilic archaebacteria (Haloarchaea) can survive extreme desiccation, starvation and radiation, sometimes apparently for millions of years. Several of the strategies that are involved appear specific for Haloarchaea (for example, the formation of halomucin, survival in fluid inclusions of halite), and some are known from other prokaryotes (dwarfing of cells, reduction of ATP). Several newly-discovered haloarchaeal strategies that were inferred to possibly promote long-term survival—halomucin, polyploidy, usage of DNA as a phosphate storage polymer, production of spherical dormant stages—remain to be characterized in detail. More information on potential strategies is desirable, since evidence for the presence of halite on Mars and on several moons in the solar system increased interest in halophiles with respect to the search for extraterrestrial life. This review deals in particular with novel findings and hypotheses on haloarchaeal long-term survival. PMID:26226005

  14. Overlapping activator sequences determined for two oppositely oriented promoters in halophilic Archaea

    PubMed Central

    Bauer, Martina; Marschaus, Larissa; Reuff, Muriel; Besche, Verena; Sartorius-Neef, Simone; Pfeifer, Felicitas

    2008-01-01

    Transcription of the genomic region involved in gas vesicle formation in Halobacterium salinarum (p-vac) and Haloferax mediterranei (mc-vac) is driven by two divergent promoters, PA and PD, separated by only 35 nt. Both promoters are activated by the transcription activator GvpE which in the case of PmcA requires a 20-nt sequence (UAS) consisting of two conserved 8-nt sequence portions located upstream of BRE. Here, we determined the two UAS elements in the promoter region of p-vac by scanning mutageneses using constructs containing PpD (without PpA) fused to the bgaH reporter gene encoding an enzyme with β-galactosidase activity, or the dual reporter construct pApD with PpD fused to bgaH and PpA to an altered version of gvpA. The two UAS elements found exhibited a similar extension and distance to BRE as previously determined for the UAS in PmcA. Their distal 8-nt portions almost completely overlapped in the centre of PpD–PpA, and mutations in this region negatively affected the GvpE-mediated activation of both promoters. Any alteration of the distance between BRE and UAS resulted in the loss of the GvpE activation, as did a complete substitution of the proximal 8-nt portion, underlining that a close location of UAS and BRE was very important. PMID:18056077

  15. Extremely halophilic archaea and the issue of long-term microbial survival

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Halophilic archaebacteria (haloarchaea) thrive in environments with salt concentrations approaching saturation, such as natural brines, the Dead Sea, alkaline salt lakes and marine solar salterns; they have also been isolated from rock salt of great geological age (195–250 million years). An overview of their taxonomy, including novel isolates from rock salt, is presented here; in addition, some of their unique characteristics and physiological adaptations to environments of low water activity are reviewed. The issue of extreme long-term microbial survival is considered and its implications for the search for extraterrestrial life. The development of detection methods for subterranean haloarchaea, which might also be applicable to samples from future missions to space, is presented. PMID:21984879

  16. Polymer production by two newly isolated extremely halophilic archaea: application of a novel corrosion-resistant bioreactor.

    PubMed

    Hezayen, F F; Rehm, B H; Eberhardt, R; Steinbüchel, A

    2000-09-01

    A novel corrosion-resistant bioreactor composed of polyetherether ketone (PEEK), tech glass and silicium nitrite ceramics was constructed and applied for the cultivation of two newly isolated, extremely halophilic archaea producing poly(gamma-glutamic acid) (PGA), or poly(beta-hydroxy butyric acid) (PHB), respectively. These bacteria were isolated from hypersaline soil close to Aswan (Egypt). The isolate strain 40, which is related to the genus Natrialba, produced large amounts of PGA when cultivated on solid medium. Culture conditions were optimised applying the corrosion-resistant bioreactor. PGA production was dependent on NaCl concentration and occurred about at 20% (w/v) NaCl in the medium. A maximum cell density of about 1.6 g cell dry matter/l was obtained when the bioreactor was stirred and aerated in a batch fermentation process using proteose-peptone medium. The supernatant was monitored with respect to PGA formation, and after 90 h a maximum of 470 mg/l culture volume was detected by HPLC analysis. Culture conditions were optimized for the isolate 56, which accumulated PHB as intracellular granules. Batch fermentations in the stirred and aerated bioreactor applying acetate and n-butyric acid as carbon sources led to cell density of 2.28 g cell dry matter/l and a maximum PHB accumulation contributing to about 53% of cellular dry weight. About 4.6 g PHB were isolated from 10.6 g dried cells of strain 56, which exhibited a weight average molar mass of 2.3 x 10(5) g mol(-1) and a polydispersity of about 1.4. PMID:11030566

  17. Patterns and Determinants of Halophilic Archaea (Class Halobacteria) Diversity in Tunisian Endorheic Salt Lakes and Sebkhet Systems

    PubMed Central

    Najjari, Afef; Elshahed, Mostafa S.; Cherif, Ameur

    2015-01-01

    We examined the diversity and community structure of members of the halophilic Archaea (class Halobacteria) in samples from central and southern Tunisian endorheic salt lakes and sebkhet (also known as sebkha) systems using targeted 16S rRNA gene diversity survey and quantitative PCR (qPCR) approaches. Twenty-three different samples from four distinct locations exhibiting a wide range of salinities (2% to 37%) and physical characteristics (water, salt crust, sediment, and biofilm) were examined. A total of 4,759 operational taxonomic units at the 0.03 (species-level) cutoff (OTU0.03s) belonging to 45 currently recognized genera were identified, with 8 to 43 genera (average, 30) identified per sample. In spite of the large number of genera detected per sample, only a limited number (i.e., 2 to 16) usually constituted the majority (≥80%) of encountered sequences. Halobacteria diversity showed a strong negative correlation to salinity (Pearson correlation coefficient = −0.92), and community structure analysis identified salinity, rather than the location or physical characteristics of the sample, as the most important factor shaping the Halobacteria community structure. The relative abundance of genera capable of biosynthesis of the compatible solute(s) trehalose or 2-sulfotrehalose decreased with increasing salinities (Pearson correlation coefficient = −0.80). Indeed, qPCR analysis demonstrated that the Halobacteria otsB (trehalose-6-phosphatase)/16S rRNA gene ratio decreases with increasing salinities (Pearson correlation coefficient = −0.87). The results highlight patterns and determinants of Halobacteria diversity at a previously unexplored ecosystem and indicate that genera lacking trehalose biosynthetic capabilities are more adapted to growth in and colonization of hypersaline (>25% salt) ecosystems than trehalose producers. PMID:25911472

  18. Interaction of Extreme Halophilic Archaea With the Evaporites of the Solar Salterns Guerrero Negro Baja California, Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tamez, P.; Lopez-Cortés, A.

    2008-12-01

    Hypersaline environments have been significant reservoirs for the long-term evolution of specifically adapted microorganisms. Characterized to have higher salt concentrations (up to 35 g/L), they are worldwide distributed and have a commercial significance. Exportadora de Sal, Guerrero Negro, Mexico has a multipond salterns system designed to harvest common salt (NaCl) from sea water. To achieve this purpose, sea water is pumped through a set of shallow ponds where water evaporates and salts concentrate. Sequential precipitation of CaCO3, CaSO4 2H2O and NaCl occurs in a mineral formations call it evaporites. In the interior of those gypsum-encrusted and halite-encrusted minerals, communities of extremely salt-loving archaea prosper. Previous studies have showed the influence of Haloarchaeal cells in the formation of larger fluid inclusions than crystals formed in sterile salt solutions. S-layer envelopes and cells of Haloarcula strain SP8807 contributed to the nucleation of new crystals of NaCl. Given the significance of the scope in phylogenetic archaeal diversity research, this study had a polyphasic approach. SEM micrographs from a 21- 31% (w/v) gradient salt multipond system evaporites, gave an insight profile of the extreme halophilic archaeal communities thriving in the surface of the gypsum and halite evaporites. Halite crystals were form after 21 days of incubation in solid medium with archaeal cells. Both culture and non-culture dependent methods, Nested-PCR-DGGE analysis and sequencing of 16S rDNA amplified fragment genes from environmental samples and isolated strains were used for this purpose. We isolate three strains from Pond 9 (21.07% total salt concentration) and one strain from Cristallizer 20 (25.15% total salt concentration). 16S rDNA signaling gave 99% of similarity with Halogeometricum borinquense, sequence AF002984, two other strains were 99% of similarity with Halobacterium salinarum, sequence AJ496185 these strains shown different colony

  19. Structural insights into the adaptation of proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) from Haloferax volcanii to a high-salt environment

    SciTech Connect

    Morgunova, Ekaterina; Gray, Fiona C.; MacNeill, Stuart A.; Ladenstein, Rudolf

    2009-10-01

    The crystal structure of PCNA from the halophilic archaeon H. volcanii reveals specific features of the charge distribution on the protein surface that reflect adaptation to a high-salt environment and suggests a different type of interaction with DNA in halophilic PCNAs. The sliding clamp proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) plays vital roles in many aspects of DNA replication and repair in eukaryotic cells and in archaea. Realising the full potential of archaea as a model for PCNA function requires a combination of biochemical and genetic approaches. In order to provide a platform for subsequent reverse genetic analysis, PCNA from the halophilic archaeon Haloferax volcanii was subjected to crystallographic analysis. The gene was cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli and the protein was purified by affinity chromatography and crystallized by the vapour-diffusion technique. The structure was determined by molecular replacement and refined at 3.5 Å resolution to a final R factor of 23.7% (R{sub free} = 25%). PCNA from H. volcanii was found to be homotrimeric and to resemble other homotrimeric PCNA clamps but with several differences that appear to be associated with adaptation of the protein to the high intracellular salt concentrations found in H. volcanii cells.

  20. Raman spectroscopy as a potentialmethod for the detection of extremely halophilic archaea embedded in halite in terrestrial and possibly extraterrestrial samples

    PubMed Central

    Fendrihan, Sergiu; Musso, Maurizio; Stan-Lotter, Helga

    2011-01-01

    Evidence for the widespread occurrence of extraterrestrial halite, particularly on Mars, has led to speculations on the possibility of halophilic microbial forms of life; these ideas have been strengthened by reports of viable haloarchaea from sediments of geological age (millions of years). Raman spectroscopy, being a sensitive detection method for future astrobiological investigations onsite, has been used in the current study for the detection of nine different extremely halophilic archaeal strains which had been embedded in laboratory-made halite crystals in order to simulate evaporitic conditions. The cells accumulated preferentially in tiny fluid inclusions, in simulation of the precipitation of salt in natural brines. FT-Raman spectroscopy using laser excitation at 1064 nm and dispersive micro Raman spectroscopy at 514.5 nm were applied. The spectra showed prominent peaks at 1507, 1152 and 1002 cm−1 which are attributed to haloarchaeal C50 carotenoid compounds (mainly bacterioruberins). Their intensity varied from strain to strain at 1064-nm laser excitation. Other distinguishable features were peaks due to peptide bonds (amide I, amide III) and to nucleic acids. No evidence for fatty acids was detected, consistent with their general absence in all archaea. These results contribute to a growing database on Raman spectra of terrestrial microorganisms from hypersaline environments and highlight the influence of the different macromolecular composition of diverse strains on these spectra. PMID:22058585

  1. Haloferax volcanii N-Glycosylation: Delineating the Pathway of dTDP-rhamnose Biosynthesis

    PubMed Central

    Kaminski, Lina; Eichler, Jerry

    2014-01-01

    In the halophilic archaea Haloferax volcanii, the surface (S)-layer glycoprotein can be modified by two distinct N-linked glycans. The tetrasaccharide attached to S-layer glycoprotein Asn-498 comprises a sulfated hexose, two hexoses and a rhamnose. While Agl11-14 have been implicated in the appearance of the terminal rhamnose subunit, the precise roles of these proteins have yet to be defined. Accordingly, a series of in vitro assays conducted with purified Agl11-Agl14 showed these proteins to catalyze the stepwise conversion of glucose-1-phosphate to dTDP-rhamnose, the final sugar of the tetrasaccharide glycan. Specifically, Agl11 is a glucose-1-phosphate thymidylyltransferase, Agl12 is a dTDP-glucose-4,6-dehydratase and Agl13 is a dTDP-4-dehydro-6-deoxy-glucose-3,5-epimerase, while Agl14 is a dTDP-4-dehydrorhamnose reductase. Archaea thus synthesize nucleotide-activated rhamnose by a pathway similar to that employed by Bacteria and distinct from that used by Eukarya and viruses. Moreover, a bioinformatics screen identified homologues of agl11-14 clustered in other archaeal genomes, often as part of an extended gene cluster also containing aglB, encoding the archaeal oligosaccharyltransferase. This points to rhamnose as being a component of N-linked glycans in Archaea other than Hfx. volcanii. PMID:24831810

  2. Survival of extremely and moderately halophilic isolates of Tunisian solar salterns after UV-B or oxidative stress.

    PubMed

    Trigui, Hana; Masmoudi, Salma; Brochier-Armanet, Céline; Maalej, Sami; Dukan, Sam

    2011-11-01

    Adaptation to a solar saltern environment requires mechanisms providing tolerance not only to salinity but also to UV radiation (UVR) and to reactive oxygen species (ROS). We cultivated prokaryote halophiles from two different salinity ponds: the concentrator M1 pond (240 g·L(-1) NaCl) and the crystallizer TS pond (380 g·L(-1) NaCl). We then estimated UV-B and hydrogen peroxide resistance according to the optimal salt concentration for growth of the isolates. We observed a higher biodiversity of bacterial isolates in M1 than in TS. All strains isolated from TS appeared to be extremely halophilic Archaea from the genus Halorubrum. Culturable strains isolated from M1 included extremely halophilic Archaea (genera Haloferax, Halobacterium, Haloterrigena, and Halorubrum) and moderately halophilic Bacteria (genera Halovibrio and Salicola). We also found that archaeal strains were more resistant than bacterial strains to exposure to ROS and UV-B. All organisms tested were more resistant to UV-B exposure at the optimum NaCl concentration for their growth, which is not always the case for H(2)O(2). Finally, if these results are extended to other prokaryotes present in a solar saltern, we could speculate that UVR has greater impact than ROS on the control of prokaryote biodiversity in a solar saltern. PMID:22017705

  3. Culturable halophilic archaea at the initial and crystallization stages of salt production in a natural solar saltern of Goa, India

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Goa is a coastal state in India and salt making is being practiced for many years. This investigation aimed in determining the culturable haloarchaeal diversity during two different phases of salt production in a natural solar saltern of Ribandar, Goa. Water and sediment samples were collected from the saltern during pre-salt harvesting phase and salt harvesting phase. Salinity and pH of the sampling site was determined. Isolates were obtained by plating of the samples on complex and synthetic haloarchaeal media. Morphology of the isolates was determined using Gram staining and electron microscopy. Response of cells to distilled water was studied spectrophotometrically at 600nm. Molecular identification of the isolates was performed by sequencing the 16S rRNA. Results Salinity of salt pans varied from 3-4% (non-salt production phase) to 30% (salt production phase) and pH varied from 7.0-8.0. Seven haloarchaeal strains were isolated from water and sediment samples during non-salt production phase and seventeen haloarchaeal strains were isolated during the salt production phase. All the strains stained uniformly Gram negative. The orange-red acetone extract of the pigments showed similar spectrophotometric profile with absorption maxima at 393, 474, 501 and 535 nm. All isolates obtained from the salt dilute phase were grouped within the genus Halococcus. This was validated using both total lipid profiling and 16S rRNA data sequencing. The isolates obtained from pre-salt harvesting phase were resistant to lysis. 16S rRNA data showed that organisms belonging to Halorubrum, Haloarcula, Haloferax and Halococcus genera were obtained during the salt concentrated phase. The isolates obtained from salt harvesting phase showed varied lysis on suspension in distilled water and /or 3.5% NaCl. Conclusion Salterns in Goa are transiently operated during post monsoon season from January to May. During the pre-salt harvesting phase, all the isolates obtained belonged to

  4. Spherical particles of halophilic archaea correlate with exposure to low water activity--implications for microbial survival in fluid inclusions of ancient halite.

    PubMed

    Fendrihan, S; Dornmayr-Pfaffenhuemer, M; Gerbl, F W; Holzinger, A; Grösbacher, M; Briza, P; Erler, A; Gruber, C; Plätzer, K; Stan-Lotter, H

    2012-09-01

    Viable extremely halophilic archaea (haloarchaea) have been isolated from million-year-old salt deposits around the world; however, an explanation of their supposed longevity remains a fundamental challenge. Recently small roundish particles in fluid inclusions of 22 000- to 34 000-year-old halite were identified as haloarchaea capable of proliferation (Schubert BA, Lowenstein TK, Timofeeff MN, Parker MA, 2010, Environmental Microbiology, 12, 440-454). Searching for a method to produce such particles in the laboratory, we exposed rod-shaped cells of Halobacterium species to reduced external water activity (a(w)). Gradual formation of spheres of about 0.4 μm diameter occurred in 4 M NaCl buffer of a(w) ≤ 0.75, but exposure to buffered 4 M LiCl (a(w) ≤ 0.73) split cells into spheres within seconds, with concomitant release of several proteins. From one rod, three or four spheres emerged, which re-grew to normal rods in nutrient media. Biochemical properties of rods and spheres were similar, except for a markedly reduced ATP content (about 50-fold) and an increased lag phase of spheres, as is known from dormant bacteria. The presence of viable particles of similar sizes in ancient fluid inclusions suggested that spheres might represent dormant states of haloarchaea. The easy production of spheres by lowering a(w) should facilitate their investigation and could help to understand the mechanisms for microbial survival over geological times. PMID:22804926

  5. Spherical particles of halophilic archaea correlate with exposure to low water activity – implications for microbial survival in fluid inclusions of ancient halite

    PubMed Central

    Fendrihan, S; Dornmayr-Pfaffenhuemer, M; Gerbl, F W; Holzinger, A; Grösbacher, M; Briza, P; Erler, A; Gruber, C; Plätzer, K; Stan-Lotter, H

    2012-01-01

    Viable extremely halophilic archaea (haloarchaea) have been isolated from million-year-old salt deposits around the world; however, an explanation of their supposed longevity remains a fundamental challenge. Recently small roundish particles in fluid inclusions of 22 000- to 34 000-year-old halite were identified as haloarchaea capable of proliferation (Schubert BA, Lowenstein TK, Timofeeff MN, Parker MA, 2010, Environmental Microbiology, 12, 440–454). Searching for a method to produce such particles in the laboratory, we exposed rod-shaped cells of Halobacterium species to reduced external water activity (aw). Gradual formation of spheres of about 0.4 μm diameter occurred in 4 m NaCl buffer of aw ≤ 0.75, but exposure to buffered 4 m LiCl (aw ≤ 0.73) split cells into spheres within seconds, with concomitant release of several proteins. From one rod, three or four spheres emerged, which re-grew to normal rods in nutrient media. Biochemical properties of rods and spheres were similar, except for a markedly reduced ATP content (about 50-fold) and an increased lag phase of spheres, as is known from dormant bacteria. The presence of viable particles of similar sizes in ancient fluid inclusions suggested that spheres might represent dormant states of haloarchaea. The easy production of spheres by lowering aw should facilitate their investigation and could help to understand the mechanisms for microbial survival over geological times. PMID:22804926

  6. Cloning, sequencing, and characterization of ribosomal protein and RNA polymerase genes from the region analogous to the alpha-operon of escherichia coli in halophilic archaea, halobacterium halobium.

    PubMed

    Sano, K; Taguchi, A; Furumoto, H; Uda, T; Itoh, T

    1999-10-14

    A determination was made of the nucleotide sequence of the 3215-bp region of a ribosomal protein gene cluster (HS13, HS4, HS11, and HeL18), RNA polymerase (RNA poly D), and tRNA genes (tRNAser and tRNAarg) of halophilic Archaea Halobacterium halobium, which is analogous to the alpha-operon of Escherichia coli (tRNAser-HS13-HS4-HS11-RNA poly D-tRNAarg-HeL18). The seven-gene string was preceded by a pseudoknot-like structure similar to the proposed S4 ribosomal protein binding site of the alpha-operon mRNA leader in E. coli. Using an inducible expression system H. halobium HS4 was produced in large amounts in E. coli, and immunoblot analysis showed the S4 to constitute a 21-kDa polypeptide component of the ribosome. Analysis of the deduced amino acids sequence revealed that the HS13, HS4, and HS11 sequences including the RNA polymerase subunit are more similar to their eukaryotic than to their bacterial counterparts. HeL18, located downstream of the gene cluster analogous to the E. coli alpha-operon (S13-S11-S4-RNA poly D-L17), was similar to both the eukaryotic (eL18) and eubacterial ribosomal protein L15 located in the spc-operon, but not to L17 positioned as the terminal gene of the bacterial alpha-operon. PMID:10527834

  7. Essential requirements for the detection and degradation of invaders by the Haloferax volcanii CRISPR/Cas system I-B

    PubMed Central

    Maier, Lisa-Katharina; Lange, Sita J.; Stoll, Britta; Haas, Karina A.; Fischer, Susan; Fischer, Eike; Duchardt-Ferner, Elke; Wöhnert, Jens; Backofen, Rolf; Marchfelder, Anita

    2013-01-01

    To fend off foreign genetic elements, prokaryotes have developed several defense systems. The most recently discovered defense system, CRISPR/Cas, is sequence-specific, adaptive and heritable. The two central components of this system are the Cas proteins and the CRISPR RNA. The latter consists of repeat sequences that are interspersed with spacer sequences. The CRISPR locus is transcribed into a precursor RNA that is subsequently processed into short crRNAs. CRISPR/Cas systems have been identified in bacteria and archaea, and data show that many variations of this system exist. We analyzed the requirements for a successful defense reaction in the halophilic archaeon Haloferax volcanii. Haloferax encodes a CRISPR/Cas system of the I-B subtype, about which very little is known. Analysis of the mature crRNAs revealed that they contain a spacer as their central element, which is preceded by an eight-nucleotide-long 5′ handle that originates from the upstream repeat. The repeat sequences have the potential to fold into a minimal stem loop. Sequencing of the crRNA population indicated that not all of the spacers that are encoded by the three CRISPR loci are present in the same abundance. By challenging Haloferax with an invader plasmid, we demonstrated that the interaction of the crRNA with the invader DNA requires a 10-nucleotide-long seed sequence. In addition, we found that not all of the crRNAs from the three CRISPR loci are effective at triggering the degradation of invader plasmids. The interference does not seem to be influenced by the copy number of the invader plasmid. PMID:23594992

  8. Gentisate 1,2-dioxygenase from Haloferax sp. D1227.

    PubMed

    Fu, W; Oriel, P

    1998-11-01

    Gentisate 1,2-dioxygenase from the extreme halophile Haloferax sp. D1227 (Hf. D1227) was purified using a three-step procedure. The enzyme was found to be a homotetramer of 42,000 +/- 1,000 Da subunits, with a native molecular weight of 174,000 +/- 6,000 Da. The optimal salt concentration, temperature, and pH for enzyme activity were 2 M KCl or NaCl, 45 degrees C, and pH 7.2, respectively. The gene encoding Hf. D1227 gentisate 1,2-dioxygenase was cloned, sequenced, and expressed in Haloferax volcanii. The deduced amino acid sequence exhibited a 9.2% excess acidic over basic amino acids typical of halophilic enzymes. Four novel histidine clusters and a possible extradiol dioxygenase fingerprint region were identified. PMID:9827334

  9. Halophilic archaebacteria from the Kalamkass oil field

    SciTech Connect

    Zvyagintseva, I.S.; Belyaev, S.S.; Borzenkov, I.A.; Kostrikina, N.A.; Milekhina, E.I.; Ivanov, M.V.

    1995-01-01

    Two strains of halophilic archaebacteria, growing in a medium containing from 10 to 25% NaCl, were isolated from the brines of the Kalamkass (Mangyshlak) oil field. Both strains are extremely halophilic archaebacteria according to the complex of their phenotypic properties. Strain M-11 was identified as Haloferax mediterranei on the basis of the composition of polar lipids and DNA-DNA homology. The composition of polar lipids and 16S rRNA sequence of strain M-18 allowed us to assign it to the genus Haloferax. This strain differs from the approved species of the genus Haloferax, H. volcanii, and H. mediterranei. However, to describe it as a new species, additional investigations are necessary. 13 refs., 3 figs.

  10. Natribaculum breve gen. nov., sp. nov. and Natribaculum longum sp. nov., halophilic archaea isolated from saline soil.

    PubMed

    Liu, Qin; Ren, Min; Zhang, Li-Li

    2015-02-01

    Two halophilic archaeal strains, TRM20010(T) and TRM20345(T), were isolated from saline soil of the Lop Nur region in Xinjiang, north-west China. Cells from the two strains were pleomorphic rods, stained Gram-negative and produced red-pigmented colonies. Strains TRM20010(T) and TRM20345(T) were able to grow at 30-62 °C (optimum 37 °C), 0.9-5.1 M NaCl (optimum 2.6 and 3.4 M, respectively) and pH 6.0-10.0 (optimum pH 7.0-7.5) and neither strain required Mg(2+) for growth. The major polar lipids of the two strains were phosphatidylglycerol (PG), phosphatidylglycerol phosphate methyl ester (PGP-Me), two glycolipids chromatographically identical to galactosyl mannosyl glucosyl diether (TGD-1) and disulfated mannosyl glucosyl diether (S2-DGD). Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA and rpoB' genes revealed that strains TRM20010(T) and TRM20345(T) clustered together and formed a distinct clade separated from the related genera Halovivax, Haloterrigena, Halostagnicola, Natronolimnobius and Natrinema. The DNA G+C contents of strains TRM20010(T) and TRM20345(T) were 63.9 and 63.8 mol%, respectively. The DNA-DNA hybridization value between strain TRM20010(T) and strain TRM20345(T) was 42.8 %. The phenotypic, chemotaxonomic and phylogenetic properties suggested that strains TRM20010(T) and TRM20345(T) represent two novel species in a new genus within the family Halobacteriaceae, for which the names Natribaculum breve gen. nov., sp. nov. (type strain TRM20010(T) = CCTCC AB2013112(T) = NRRL B-59996(T)) and Natribaculum longum sp. nov. (type strain TRM20345(T) = CCTCC AB2013113(T) = NRRL B-59997(T)) are proposed. PMID:25406237

  11. Recombinant production of Zymomonas mobilis pyruvatedecarboxylase in the haloarchaeon Haloferax volcanii

    PubMed Central

    Kaczowka, Steven J.; Reuter, Christopher J.; Talarico, Lee A.; Maupin-Furlow, Julie A.

    2005-01-01

    The unusual physiological properties of archaea (e.g., growth in extreme salt concentration, temperature and pH) make them ideal platforms for metabolic engineering. Towards the ultimate goal of modifying an archaeon to produce bioethanol or other useful products, the pyruvate decarboxylase gene of Zymomonas mobilis (Zm pdc) was expressed in Haloferax volcanii. This gene has been used successfully to channel pyruvate to ethanol in various Gram-negative bacteria, including Escherichia coli. Although the ionic strength of the H. volcanii cytosol differs over 15-fold from that of E. coli, gel filtration and circular dichroism revealed no difference in secondary structure between the ZmPDC protein isolated from either of these hosts. Like the E. coli purified enzyme, ZmPDC from H. volcanii catalyzed the nonoxidative decarboxylation of pyruvate. A decrease in the amount of soluble ZmPDC protein was detected as H. volcanii transitioned from log phase to late stationary phase that was inversely proportional to the amount of pdc-specific mRNA. Based on these results, proteins from non-halophilic organisms can be actively synthesized in haloarchaea; however, post-transcriptional mechanisms present in stationary phase appear to limit the amount of recombinant protein expressed. PMID:15876566

  12. Halophiles and their enzymes: negativity put to good use.

    PubMed

    DasSarma, Shiladitya; DasSarma, Priya

    2015-06-01

    Halophilic microorganisms possess stable enzymes that function in very high salinity, an extreme condition that leads to denaturation, aggregation, and precipitation of most other proteins. Genomic and structural analyses have established that the enzymes of halophilic Archaea and many halophilic Bacteria are negatively charged due to an excess of acidic over basic residues, and altered hydrophobicity, which enhance solubility and promote function in low water activity conditions. Here, we provide an update on recent bioinformatic analysis of predicted halophilic proteomes as well as experimental molecular studies on individual halophilic enzymes. Recent efforts on discovery and utilization of halophiles and their enzymes for biotechnology, including biofuel applications are also considered. PMID:26066288

  13. EFFECTS OF ULTRAVIOLET RADIATION ON THE MODERATE HALOPHILE HALOMONAS ELONGATA AND THE EXTREME HALOPHILE HALOBACTERIUM SALINARUM

    EPA Science Inventory

    Both the moderately halophilic bacterium, Halomonas elongata, and the extremely halophilic archaea, Halobacterium salinarum, can be found in hypersaline environments (e.g., salterns). On complex media, H. elongata grows over a salt range of 0.05-5.2 M, whereas, H. salinarum multi...

  14. N-Linked Glycosylation in Archaea: a Structural, Functional, and Genetic Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Ding, Yan; Meyer, Benjamin H.; Albers, Sonja-Verena; Kaminski, Lina; Eichler, Jerry

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY N-glycosylation of proteins is one of the most prevalent posttranslational modifications in nature. Accordingly, a pathway with shared commonalities is found in all three domains of life. While excellent model systems have been developed for studying N-glycosylation in both Eukarya and Bacteria, an understanding of this process in Archaea was hampered until recently by a lack of effective molecular tools. However, within the last decade, impressive advances in the study of the archaeal version of this important pathway have been made for halophiles, methanogens, and thermoacidophiles, combining glycan structural information obtained by mass spectrometry with bioinformatic, genetic, biochemical, and enzymatic data. These studies reveal both features shared with the eukaryal and bacterial domains and novel archaeon-specific aspects. Unique features of N-glycosylation in Archaea include the presence of unusual dolichol lipid carriers, the use of a variety of linking sugars that connect the glycan to proteins, the presence of novel sugars as glycan constituents, the presence of two very different N-linked glycans attached to the same protein, and the ability to vary the N-glycan composition under different growth conditions. These advances are the focus of this review, with an emphasis on N-glycosylation pathways in Haloferax, Methanococcus, and Sulfolobus. PMID:24847024

  15. Haloadaptation: insights from comparative modeling studies of halophilic archaeal DHFRs.

    PubMed

    Kastritis, Panagiotis L; Papandreou, Nikos C; Hamodrakas, Stavros J

    2007-10-01

    Proteins of halophilic archaea function in high-salt concentrations that inactivate or precipitate homologous proteins from non-halophilic species. Haloadaptation and the mechanism behind the phenomenon are not yet fully understood. In order to obtain useful information, homology modeling studies of dihydrofolate reductases (DHFRs) from halophilic archaea were performed that led to the construction of structural models. These models were subjected to energy minimization, structural evaluation and analysis. Complementary approaches concerning calculations of the amino acid composition and visual inspection of the surfaces and cores of the models, as well as calculations of electrostatic surface potentials, in comparison to non-halophilic DHFRs were also performed. The results provide evidence that sheds some light on the phenomenon of haloadaptation: DHFRs from halophilic archaea may maintain their fold, in high-salt concentrations, by sharing highly negatively charged surfaces and weak hydrophobic cores. PMID:17675150

  16. Bioenergetic Aspects of Halophilism

    PubMed Central

    Oren, Aharon

    1999-01-01

    Examinination of microbial diversity in environments of increasing salt concentrations indicates that certain types of dissimilatory metabolism do not occur at the highest salinities. Examples are methanogenesis for H2 + CO2 or from acetate, dissimilatory sulfate reduction with oxidation of acetate, and autotrophic nitrification. Occurrence of the different metabolic types is correlated with the free-energy change associated with the dissimilatory reactions. Life at high salt concentrations is energetically expensive. Most bacteria and also the methanogenic archaea produce high intracellular concentrations of organic osmotic solutes at a high energetic cost. All halophilic microorganisms expend large amounts of energy to maintain steep gradients of NA+ and K+ concentrations across their cytoplasmic membrane. The energetic cost of salt adaptation probably dictates what types of metabolism can support life at the highest salt concentrations. Use of KCl as an intracellular solute, while requiring far-reaching adaptations of the intracellular machinery, is energetically more favorable than production of organic-compatible solutes. This may explain why the anaerobic halophilic fermentative bacteria (order Haloanaerobiales) use this strategy and also why halophilic homoacetogenic bacteria that produce acetate from H2 + CO2 exist whereas methanogens that use the same substrates in a reaction with a similar free-energy yield do not. PMID:10357854

  17. [Diversity and enzyme-producing activity of culturable halophilic bacteria in Daishan Saltern of East China].

    PubMed

    Yang, Dan-Dan; Li, Qian; Huang, Jing-Jing; Chen, Min

    2012-11-01

    Soil and saline water samples were collected from the Daishan Saltern of East China, and the halophilic bacteria were isolated and cultured by using selective media, aimed to investigate the diversity and enzyme-producing activity of culturable halophilic bacteria in saltern environment. A total of 181 strains were isolated by culture-dependent method. Specific primers were used to amplify the 16S rRNA gene of bacteria and archaea. The operation taxonomy units (OTUs) were determined by ARDRA method, and the representative strain of each OTU was sequenced. The phylogenetic position of all the isolated strains was determined by 16S rRNA sequencing. The results showed that the isolated 181 strains displayed 21 operational taxonomic units (OTUs), of which, 12 OTUs belonged to halophilic bacteria, and the others belonged to halophilic archaea. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that there were 7 genera presented among the halophilic bacteria group, and 4 genera presented among the halophilic archaea group. The dominant halophilic strains were of Halomonas and Haloarcula, with 46.8% in halophilic bacteria and 49.1% in halophilic archaea group, respectively. Enzyme-producing analysis indicated that most strains displayed enzyme-producing activity, including the activities of producing amylase, proteinase and lipase, and the dominant strains capable of enzyme-producing were of Haloarcula. Our results showed that in the environment of Daishan Saltern, there existed a higher diversity of halophilic bacteria, being a source sink for screening enzyme-producing bacterial strains. PMID:23431797

  18. Activation of a dormant replication origin is essential for Haloferax mediterranei lacking the primary origins

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Haibo; Wu, Zhenfang; Liu, Jingfang; Liu, Xiaoqing; Wang, Lei; Cai, Shuangfeng; Xiang, Hua

    2015-01-01

    The use of multiple origins for chromosome replication has been demonstrated in archaea. Similar to the dormant origins in eukaryotes, some potential origins in archaea appear to be inactive during genome replication. We have comprehensively explored the origin utilization in Haloferax mediterranei. Here we report three active chromosomal origins by genome-wide replication profiling, and demonstrate that when these three origins are deleted, a dormant origin becomes activated. Notably, this dormant origin cannot be further deleted when the other origins are already absent and vice versa. Interestingly, a potential origin that appears to stay dormant in its native host H. volcanii lacking the main active origins becomes activated and competent for replication of the entire chromosome when integrated into the chromosome of origin-deleted H. mediterranei. These results indicate that origin-dependent replication is strictly required for H. mediterranei and that dormant replication origins in archaea can be activated if needed. PMID:26374389

  19. Diversity of anaerobic halophilic microorganisms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oren, Aharon; Oremland, Roland S.

    2000-12-01

    Life in the presence of high salt concentrations is compatible with life in the absence of oxygen. Halophilic and halotolerant anaerobic prokaryotes are found both in the archaeal and in the bacterial domain, and they display a great metabolic diversity. Many of the representatives of the Halobacteriales (Archaea), which are generally considered aerobes, have the potential of anaerobic growth. Some can use alternative electron acceptors such as nitrate, fumarate, dimethylsulfoxide or trimethylamine-N-oxide Halobacterium salinarum can also grow fermentatively on L-arginine, and bacteriorhodopsin-containing cells may even grow anaerobically, energized by light. Obligatory anaerobic halophilic methanogenic Archaea also exist. The bacterial domain contains many anaerobic halophiles, including sulfate reducers. There is also a group of specialized obligatory anaerobic Bacteria, phylogenetically clustering in the low G + C branch of the Firmicutes. Most representatives of this group (order Haloanaerobiales, families Haloanaerobiaceae and Halobacteroidaceae) are fermentative, using a variety of carbohydrates and amino acids. One species combines the potential for anaerobic growth at high salt concentrations with a preference for high temperatures. Others are homoacetogens; Acetohalobium arabaticum can grow anaerobically as a chemolithotroph, producing acetate from hydrogen and CO2. The Haloanaerobiales accumulate high concentrations of K+ and Cl- in their cytoplasm, thereby showing a strategy of salt adaptation similar to that used by the Halobacteriales. Recently a new representative of the Haloanaerobiales was isolated from bottom sediments of the Dead Sea (strain DSSe1), which grows anaerobically by oxidation of glycerol to acetate and CO2 while reducing selenate to selenite and elementary selenium. Other electron acceptors supporting anaerobic growth of this strain are nitrate and trimethylamine-N-oxide. The versatility of life at high salt concentrations with respect

  20. Dihydroxyacetone metabolism in Haloferax volcanii

    PubMed Central

    Ouellette, Matthew; Makkay, Andrea M.; Papke, R. Thane

    2013-01-01

    Dihydroxyacetone (DHA) is a ketose sugar that can be produced by oxidizing glycerol. DHA in the environment is taken up and phosphorylated to DHA-phosphate by glycerol kinase or DHA kinase. In hypersaline environments, it is hypothesized that DHA is produced as an overflow product from glycerol utilization by organisms such as Salinibacter ruber. Previous research has demonstrated that the halobacterial species Haloquadratum walsbyi can use DHA as a carbon source, and putative DHA kinase genes were hypothesized to be involved in this process. However, DHA metabolism has not been demonstrated in other halobacterial species, and the role of the DHA kinase genes was not confirmed. In this study, we examined the metabolism of DHA in Haloferax volcanii because putative DHA kinase genes were annotated in its genome, and it has an established genetic system to assay growth of mutant knockouts. Experiments in which Hfx. volcanii was grown on DHA as the sole carbon source demonstrated growth, and that it is concentration dependent. Three annotated DHA kinase genes (HVO_1544, HVO_1545, and HVO_1546), which are homologous to the putative DHA kinase genes present in Hqm. walsbyi, as well as the glycerol kinase gene (HVO_1541), were deleted to examine the effect of these genes on the growth of Hfx. volcanii on DHA. Experiments demonstrated that the DHA kinase deletion mutant exhibited diminished, but not absence of growth on DHA compared to the parent strain. Deletion of the glycerol kinase gene also reduced growth on DHA, and did so more than deletion of the DHA kinase. The results indicate that Hfx. volcanii can metabolize DHA and that DHA kinase plays a role in this metabolism. However, the glycerol kinase appears to be the primary enzyme involved in this process. BLASTp analyses demonstrate that the DHA kinase genes are patchily distributed among the Halobacteria, whereas the glycerol kinase gene is widely distributed, suggesting a widespread capability for DHA metabolism

  1. Halophilic enzyme activation induced by salts

    PubMed Central

    Ortega, Gabriel; Laín, Ana; Tadeo, Xavier; López-Méndez, Blanca; Castaño, David; Millet, Oscar

    2011-01-01

    Halophilic archea (halobacteriae) thrive in hypersaline environments, avoiding osmotic shock by increasing the ion concentration of their cytoplasm by up to 3–6 M. To remain folded and active, their constitutive proteins have evolved towards a biased amino acid composition. High salt concentration affects catalytic activity in an enzyme-dependent way and a unified molecular mechanism remains elusive. Here, we have investigated a DNA ligase from Haloferax volcanii (Hv LigN) to show that K+ triggers catalytic activity by preferentially stabilising a specific conformation in the reaction coordinate. Sodium ions, in turn, do not populate such isoform and the enzyme remains inactive in the presence of this co-solute. Our results show that the halophilic amino acid signature enhances the enzyme's thermodynamic stability, with an indirect effect on its catalytic activity. This model has been successfully applied to reengineer Hv LigN into an enzyme that is catalytically active in the presence of NaCl. PMID:22355525

  2. Purification and properties of a dissimilatory nitrate reductase from Haloferax denitrificans

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hochstein, L. I.; Lang, F.

    1991-01-01

    A membrane-bound nitrate reductase (nitrite:(acceptor) oxidoreductase, EC 1.7.99.4) from the extremely halophilic bacterium Haloferax denitrificans was solubilized by incubating membranes in buffer lacking NaCl and purified by DEAE, hydroxylapatite, and Sepharose 6B gel filtration chromatography. The purified nitrate reductase reduced chlorate and was inhibited by azide and cyanide. Preincubating the enzyme with cyanide increased the extent of inhibition which in turn was intensified when dithionite was present. Although cyanide was a noncompetitive inhibitor with respect to nitrate, nitrate protected against inhibition. The enzyme, as isolated, was composed of two subunits (Mr 116,000 and 60,000) and behaved as a dimer during gel filtration (Mr 380,000). Unlike other halobacterial enzymes, this nitrate reductase was most active, as well as stable, in the absence of salt.

  3. N-glycosylation in Haloferax volcanii: adjusting the sweetness

    PubMed Central

    Eichler, Jerry; Arbiv, Adi; Cohen-Rosenzweig, Chen; Kaminski, Lina; Kandiba, Lina; Konrad, Zvia

    2013-01-01

    Long believed to be restricted to Eukarya, it is now known that cells of all three domains of life perform N-glycosylation, the covalent attachment of glycans to select target protein asparagine residues. Still, it is only in the last decade that pathways of N-glycosylation in Archaea have been delineated. In the haloarchaeon Haloferax volcanii, a series of Agl (archaeal glycosylation) proteins is responsible for the addition of an N-linked pentasaccharide to modified proteins, including the surface (S)-layer glycoprotein, the sole component of the surface layer surrounding the cell. The S-layer glycoprotein N-linked glycosylation profile changes, however, as a function of surrounding salinity. Upon growth at different salt concentrations, the S-layer glycoprotein is either decorated by the N-linked pentasaccharide introduced above or by both this pentasaccharide as well as a tetrasaccharide of distinct composition. Recent efforts have identified Agl5–Agl15 as components of a second Hfx. volcanii N-glycosylation pathway responsible for generating the tetrasaccharide attached to S-layer glycoprotein when growth occurs in 1.75 M but not 3.4 M NaCl-containing medium. PMID:24399998

  4. Small regulatory RNAs in Archaea

    PubMed Central

    Babski, Julia; Maier, Lisa-Katharina; Heyer, Ruth; Jaschinski, Katharina; Prasse, Daniela; Jäger, Dominik; Randau, Lennart; Schmitz, Ruth A; Marchfelder, Anita; Soppa, Jörg

    2014-01-01

    Small regulatory RNAs (sRNAs) are universally distributed in all three domains of life, Archaea, Bacteria, and Eukaryotes. In bacteria, sRNAs typically function by binding near the translation start site of their target mRNAs and thereby inhibit or activate translation. In eukaryotes, miRNAs and siRNAs typically bind to the 3′-untranslated region (3′-UTR) of their target mRNAs and influence translation efficiency and/or mRNA stability. In archaea, sRNAs have been identified in all species investigated using bioinformatic approaches, RNomics, and RNA-Seq. Their size can vary significantly between less than 50 to more than 500 nucleotides. Differential expression of sRNA genes has been studied using northern blot analysis, microarrays, and RNA-Seq. In addition, biological functions have been unraveled by genetic approaches, i.e., by characterization of designed mutants. As in bacteria, it was revealed that archaeal sRNAs are involved in many biological processes, including metabolic regulation, adaptation to extreme conditions, stress responses, and even in regulation of morphology and cellular behavior. Recently, the first target mRNAs were identified in archaea, including one sRNA that binds to the 5′-region of two mRNAs in Methanosarcina mazei Gö1 and a few sRNAs that bind to 3′-UTRs in Sulfolobus solfataricus, three Pyrobaculum species, and Haloferax volcanii, indicating that archaeal sRNAs appear to be able to target both the 5′-UTR or the 3′-UTRs of their respective target mRNAs. In addition, archaea contain tRNA-derived fragments (tRFs), and one tRF has been identified as a major ribosome-binding sRNA in H. volcanii, which downregulates translation in response to stress. Besides regulatory sRNAs, archaea contain further classes of sRNAs, e.g., CRISPR RNAs (crRNAs) and snoRNAs. PMID:24755959

  5. Overview of the genetic tools in the Archaea

    PubMed Central

    Atomi, Haruyuki; Imanaka, Tadayuki; Fukui, Toshiaki

    2012-01-01

    This section provides an overview of the genetic systems developed in the Archaea. Genetic manipulation is possible in many members of the halophiles, methanogens, Sulfolobus, and Thermococcales. We describe the selection/counterselection principles utilized in each of these groups, which consist of antibiotics and their resistance markers, and auxotrophic host strains and complementary markers. The latter strategy utilizes techniques similar to those developed in yeast. However, Archaea are resistant to many of the antibiotics routinely used for selection in the Bacteria, and a number of strategies specific to the Archaea have been developed. In addition, examples utilizing the genetic systems developed for each group will be briefly described. PMID:23060865

  6. Haloferax mediterranei GlnK proteins are post-translationally modified by uridylylation.

    PubMed

    Pedro-Roig, Laia; Camacho, Mónica; Bonete, María José

    2013-04-01

    In this work we report for the first time a post-translational modification of PII homologues from the Archaea Domain. Haloferax mediterranei is the first haloarchaea whose PII proteins have been studied, it possesses two of them (GlnK1 and GlnK2 ), both encoded adjacent to a gene for the ammonia transporter Amt. An approach based on 2DE, anti-GlnK immunoblot and peptide mass fingerprint (MALDI-TOF-MS) of the reactive spots showed that GlnK proteins in H. mediterranei are post-translationally uridylylated. A third spot with lower pI suggests the existence of a non-descript post-translational modification in this protein family. PMID:23420616

  7. Transfer of Halobacterium denitrificans (Tomlinson, Jahnke, and Hochstein) to the genus Haloferax as Haloferax denitrificans comb. nov

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tindall, B. J.; Tomlinson, G. A.; Hochstein, L. I.

    1989-01-01

    Halobacterium denitrificans (Tomlinson, Jahnke, and Hochstein) was described at a time when the taxonomic subdivision of the family Halobacteriaceae was in a state of flux. On the basis of both biochemical and chemotaxonomic data, this organism exhibits features which indicate that it is more closely related to members of the genus Haloferax. On the basis of such criteria, we propose that Halobacterium denitrificans be reclassified as Haloferax denitrificans comb. nov. The type strain is strain ATCC 35960 (= DSM 4425).

  8. Perspectives on biotechnological applications of archaea

    PubMed Central

    Schiraldi, Chiara; Giuliano, Mariateresa; De Rosa, Mario

    2002-01-01

    Many archaea colonize extreme environments. They include hyperthermophiles, sulfur-metabolizing thermophiles, extreme halophiles and methanogens. Because extremophilic microorganisms have unusual properties, they are a potentially valuable resource in the development of novel biotechnological processes. Despite extensive research, however, there are few existing industrial applications of either archaeal biomass or archaeal enzymes. This review summarizes current knowledge about the biotechnological uses of archaea and archaeal enzymes with special attention to potential applications that are the subject of current experimental evaluation. Topics covered include cultivation methods, recent achievements in genomics, which are of key importance for the development of new biotechnological tools, and the application of wild-type biomasses, engineered microorganisms, enzymes and specific metabolites in particular bioprocesses of industrial interest. PMID:15803645

  9. Halophilic life on Mars ?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stan-Lotter, Helga; Fendrihan, Sergiu; Dornmayr-Pfaffenhuemer, Marion; Holzinger, Anita; Polacsek, Tatjana K.; Legat, Andrea; Grösbacher, Michael; Weigl, Andreas

    2010-05-01

    Background: The search for extraterrestrial life has been declared as a goal for the 21th century by several space agencies. Potential candidates are microorganisms on or in the surface of moons and planets, such as Mars. Extremely halophilic archaea (haloarchaea) are of astrobiological interest since viable strains have been isolated from million years old salt deposits (1) and halite has been found in Martian meteorites and in surface pools. Therefore, haloarchaeal responses to simulated and real space conditions were explored. Immuno assays for a potential Life Marker Chip experiment were developed with antisera against the universal enzyme ATP synthase. Methods: The focus of these studies was on the application of fluorescent probes since they provide strong signals, and detection devices are suitable for miniaturization. Viability of haloarchaeal strains (Halococcus dombrowskii and Halobacterium salinarum NRC-1) was probed with the LIVE/DEAD BacLight™ kit and the BacLight™ Bacterial Membrane Potential kit. Cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers (CPD) in the DNA, following exposure to simulated and real space conditions (UV irradiation from 200 - 400 nm; 18 months exposure on the International Space Station [ISS] within the ADAPT experiment by Dr. P. Rettberg), were detected with fluorescent Alexa-Fluor-488-coupled antibodies. Immuno assays with antisera against the A-ATPase subunits from Halorubrum saccharovorum were carried out with the highly sensitive Immun-Star ™ WesternC ™ chemiluminescent kit (Bio-Rad). Results: Using the LIVE/DEAD BacLight™ kit, the D37 (dose of 37% survival) for Hcc. dombrowskii and Hbt. salinarum NRC-1, following exposure to UV (200-400 nm) was about 400 kJ/m2, when cells were embedded in halite and about 1 kJ/m2, when cells were in liquid cultures. Fluorescent staining indicated a slightly higher cellular activity than that which was derived from the determination of colony forming units. Assessment of viability with the Bac

  10. Transcriptional regulation of dimethyl sulfoxide respiration in a haloarchaeon, Haloferax volcanii.

    PubMed

    Qi, Qiuzi; Ito, Yoshiyasu; Yoshimatsu, Katsuhiko; Fujiwara, Taketomo

    2016-01-01

    The halophilic euryarchaeon Haloferax volcanii can grow anaerobically by DMSO respiration. DMSO reductase was induced by DMSO respiration not only under anaerobic growth conditions but also in denitrifying cells of H. volcanii. Deletion of the dmsR gene, encoding a putative regulator for the DMSO reductase, resulted in the loss of anaerobic growth by DMSO respiration. Reporter experiments revealed that only the anaerobic condition was essential for transcription of the dmsEABCD genes encoding DMSO reductase and that transcription was enhanced threefold by supplementation of DMSO. In the ∆dmsR mutant, transcription of the dmsEABCD genes induced by the anaerobic condition was not enhanced by DMSO, suggesting that DmsR is a DMSO-responsive regulator. Transcriptions of the dmsR and mgd genes for Mo-bisMGD biosynthesis were regulated in the same manner as the dmsEABCD genes. These results suggest that the genetic regulation of DMSO respiration in H. volcanii is controlled by at least two systems: one is the DMSO-responsive DmsR, and the other is an unknown anaerobic regulator. PMID:26507955

  11. Evidence for surfactant production by the haloarchaeon Haloferax sp. MSNC14 in hydrocarbon-containing media.

    PubMed

    Djeridi, Ikram; Militon, Cécile; Grossi, Vincent; Cuny, Philippe

    2013-07-01

    The potential for surfactant production by the extreme halophilic archaeon Haloferax sp. MSNC14 in the presence of individual hydrocarbon substrates was studied. This strain was selected for its ability to grow on different types of hydrocarbons at high NaCl concentrations. Linear (n-heptadecane or C17) and isoprenoid (pristane) alkanes, a polyaromatic hydrocarbon (phenanthrene) and ammonium acetate (highly water-soluble control compound) were used as growth substrates. The adherence potential was demonstrated by the ability of the cells to adhere to liquid or solid hydrocarbons. The biosurfactant production was indicated by the reduction of the surface tension (ST) and by the emulsification activity (EA) of cell-free supernatants. Growth on acetate was accompanied by a low EA (lower than 0.1) and a high ST (~70 mN/m), whereas an important EA (up to 0.68 ± 0.08) and a reduction of ST (down to 32 ± 2.3 mN/m) were observed during growth on the different hydrocarbons. Both ST and EA varied with the growth phase. The adhesion to hydrocarbons was higher when cells were grown on C17 (by 60-70 %) and pristane (by 30-50 %) than on phenanthrene (~25 %). The results demonstrated that strain MNSC14 was able to increase the bioavailability of insoluble hydrocarbons, thus facilitating their uptake and their biodegradation even at high salt concentration. PMID:23748377

  12. AglQ Is a Novel Component of the Haloferax volcanii N-Glycosylation Pathway

    PubMed Central

    Arbiv, Adi; Yurist-Doutsch, Sophie; Guan, Ziqiang; Eichler, Jerry

    2013-01-01

    N-glycosylation is a post-translational modification performed by members of all three domains of life. Studies on the halophile Haloferax volcanii have offered insight into the archaeal version of this universal protein-processing event. In the present study, AglQ was identified as a novel component of the pathway responsible for the assembly and addition of a pentasaccharide to select Asn residues of Hfx. volcanii glycoproteins, such as the S-layer glycoprotein. In cells deleted of aglQ, both dolichol phosphate, the lipid carrier used in Hfx. volcanii N-glycosylation, and modified S-layer glycoprotein Asn residues only presented the first three pentasaccharide subunits, pointing to a role for AglQ in either preparing the third sugar for attachment of the fourth pentasaccharide subunit or processing the fourth sugar prior to its addition to the lipid-linked trisaccharide. To better define the precise role of AglQ, shown to be a soluble protein, bioinformatics tools were recruited to identify sequence or structural homologs of known function. Site-directed mutagenesis experiments guided by these predictions identified residues important for AglQ function. The results obtained point to AglQ acting as an isomerase in Hfx. volcanii N-glycosylation. PMID:24236216

  13. Diurnally entrained anticipatory behavior in archaea.

    PubMed

    Whitehead, Kenia; Pan, Min; Masumura, Ken-ichi; Bonneau, Richard; Baliga, Nitin S

    2009-01-01

    By sensing changes in one or few environmental factors biological systems can anticipate future changes in multiple factors over a wide range of time scales (daily to seasonal). This anticipatory behavior is important to the fitness of diverse species, and in context of the diurnal cycle it is overall typical of eukaryotes and some photoautotrophic bacteria but is yet to be observed in archaea. Here, we report the first observation of light-dark (LD)-entrained diurnal oscillatory transcription in up to 12% of all genes of a halophilic archaeon Halobacterium salinarum NRC-1. Significantly, the diurnally entrained transcription was observed under constant darkness after removal of the LD stimulus (free-running rhythms). The memory of diurnal entrainment was also associated with the synchronization of oxic and anoxic physiologies to the LD cycle. Our results suggest that under nutrient limited conditions halophilic archaea take advantage of the causal influence of sunlight (via temperature) on O(2) diffusivity in a closed hypersaline environment to streamline their physiology and operate oxically during nighttime and anoxically during daytime. PMID:19424498

  14. Halophilic Amylase from a Moderately Halophilic Micrococcus

    PubMed Central

    Onishi, Hiroshi

    1972-01-01

    A moderately halophilic Micrococcus sp., isolated from unrefined solar salt, produced a considerable amount of extracellular dextrinogenic amylase when cultivated aerobically in media containing 1 to 3 m NaCl. The Micrococcus amylase had maximal activity at pH 6 to 7 in 1.4 to 2 m NaCl or KCl at 50 C. Calcium ion and a high concentration of NaCl or KCl were essential for activity and stability of the amylase. The salt response of the amylase depended greatly on the pH and temperature of the enzyme assay. PMID:5058445

  15. The effect of salts on the activity and stability of Escherichia coli and Haloferax volcanii dihydrofolate reductases.

    PubMed

    Wright, Donna B; Banks, Douglas D; Lohman, Jeremy R; Hilsenbeck, Jacqueline L; Gloss, Lisa M

    2002-10-18

    The extremely halophilic Archae require near-saturating concentrations of salt in the external environment and in their cytoplasm, potassium being the predominant intracellular cation. The proteins of these organisms have evolved to function in concentrations of salt that inactivate or precipitate homologous proteins from non-halophilic species. It has been proposed that haloadaptation is primarily due to clustering of acidic residues on the surface of the protein, and that these clusters bind networks of hydrated ions. The dihydrofolate reductases from Escherichia coli (ecDHFR) and two DHFR isozymes from Haloferax volcanii (hvDHFR1 and hvDHFR2) have been used as a model system to compare the effect of salts on a mesophilic and halophilic enzyme. The KCl-dependence of the activity and substrate affinity was investigated. ecDHFR is largely inactivated above 1M KCl, with no major effect on substrate affinity. hvDHFR1 and hvDHFR2 unfold at KCl concentrations below approximately 0.5M. Above approximately 1M, the KCl dependence of the hvDHFR activities can be attributed to the effect of salt on substrate affinity. The abilities of NaCl, KCl, and CsCl to enhance the stability to urea denaturation were determined, and similar efficacies of stabilization were observed for all three DHFR variants. The DeltaG degrees (H(2)O) values increased linearly with increasing KCl and CsCl concentrations. The increase of DeltaG degrees (H(2)O) as a function of the smallest cation, NaCl, is slightly curved, suggesting a minor stabilization from cation binding or screening of electrostatic repulsion. At their respective physiological ionic strengths, the DHFR variants exhibit similar stabilities. Salts stabilize ecDHFR and the hvDHFRs by a common mechanism, not a halophile-specific mechanism, such as the binding of hydrated salt networks. The primary mode of salt stabilization of the mesophilic and halophilic DHFRs appears to be through preferential hydration and the Hofmeister effect of

  16. Spectopotentiometric properties and salt-dependent thermotolerance of a [2Fe-2S] ferredoxin-involved nitrate assimilation in Haloferax mediterranei.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Espinosa, Rosa María; Richardson, David J; Butt, Julea N; Bonete, María José

    2007-12-01

    Haloferax mediterranei is a halophilic archaeon that can grow using nitrate as the sole nitrogen source. A ferredoxin that serves as the physiological electron donor to the nitrate and nitrite reductases in this assimilatory process has been characterized. The ferredoxin was found to contain approximately two atoms of iron and two atoms of sulphur, indicative of the binding of a [2Fe-2S] cluster. The electron paramagnetic resonance spectrum of the reduced form of the protein displayed a rhombic signal, with g(x)=1.91, g(y)=1.98, g(z)=2.07, that shows considerable similarity to plant and algal [2Fe-2S] ferredoxins. UV-visible spectropotentiometric analysis determined a midpoint redox potential for the [2Fe-2S](2+/1+) transition of around -285 mV vs. SHE that was independent of salt concentration. UV-visible spectroscopy was also used to establish that the [2Fe-2S] cluster integrity of this protein was maintained over the pH range 5-11. Significantly, the Haloferax mediterranei ferredoxin was shown to be a highly thermostable protein. It was stable up to 60 degrees C in a low-salt (0.2 M) medium and this increased to 80 degrees C in a high-salt (4 M) medium. This thermostability at high salt concentration is an essential physiological characteristic because haloarchaea are mainly found in environments where high temperatures and concentrated salt water occur. PMID:17986084

  17. Denitrification by extremely halophilic bacteria

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hochstein, L. I.; Tomlinson, G. A.

    1985-01-01

    Extremely halophilic bacteria were isolated from widely separated sites by anaerobic enrichment in the presence of nitrate. The anaerobic growth of several of these isolates was accompanied by the production of nitrite, nitrous oxide, and dinitrogen. These results are a direct confirmation of the existence of extremely halophilic denitrifying bacteria, and suggest that such bacteria may be common inhabitants of hypersaline environments.

  18. Phosphorylation and Methylation of Proteasomal Proteins of the Haloarcheon Haloferax volcanii

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Humbard, Matthew A.; Reuter, Christopher J.; Zuobi-Hasona, Kheir; Zhou, Guangyin; Maupin-Furlow, Julie A.

    2010-01-01

    Promore » teasomes are composed of 20S core particles (CPs) of α - and β -type subunits that associate with regulatory particle AAA ATPases such as the proteasome-activating nucleotidase (PAN) complexes of archaea. In this study, the roles and additional sites of post-translational modification of proteasomes were investigated using the archaeon Haloferax volcanii as a model. Indicative of phosphorylation, phosphatase-sensitive isoforms of α 1 and α 2 were detected by 2-DE immunoblot. To map these and other potential sites of post-translational modification, proteasomes were purified and analyzed by tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS). Using this approach, several phosphosites were mapped including α 1 Thr147, α 2 Thr13/Ser14 and PAN-A Ser340. Multiple methylation sites were also mapped to α 1 , thus, revealing a new type of proteasomal modification.bing the biological role of α 1 and PAN-A phosphorylation by site-directed mutagenesis revealed dominant negative phenotypes for cell viability and/or pigmentation for α 1 variants including Thr147Ala, Thr158Ala and Ser58Ala. An H. volcanii Rio1p Ser/Thr kinase homolog was purified and shown to catalyze autophosphorylation and phosphotransfer to α 1 . The α 1 variants in Thr and Ser residues that displayed dominant negative phenotypes were significantly reduced in their ability to accept phosphoryl groups from Rio1p, thus, providing an important link between cell physiology and proteasomal phosphorylation.« less

  19. Hydrophobic carboxy-terminal residues dramatically reduce protein levels in the haloarchaeon Haloferax volcanii

    PubMed Central

    Reuter, Christopher J.; Uthandi, Sivakumar; Puentes, Jose A.; Maupin-Furlow, Julie A.

    2010-01-01

    Proteolysis is important not only to cell physiology but also to the successful development of biocatalysts. While a wide-variety of signals are known to trigger protein degradation in bacteria and eukaryotes, these mechanisms are poorly understood in archaea, known for their ability to withstand harsh conditions. Here we present a systematic study in which single C-terminal amino acid residues were added to a reporter protein and shown to influence its levels in an archaeal cell. All 20 amino acid residues were examined for their impact on protein levels, using the reporter protein soluble modified red-shifted GFP (smRS-GFP) expressed in the haloarchaeon Haloferax volcanii as a model system. Addition of hydrophobic residues, including Leu, Cys, Met, Phe, Ala, Tyr, Ile and Val, gave the most pronounced reduction in smRS-GFP levels compared with the addition of either neutral or charged hydrophilic residues. In contrast to the altered protein levels, the C-terminal alterations had no influence on smRS-GFP-specific transcript levels, thus revealing that the effect is post-transcriptional. PMID:19850616

  20. Genetic identification of three ABC transporters as essential elements for nitrate respiration in Haloferax volcanii.

    PubMed Central

    Wanner, C; Soppa, J

    1999-01-01

    More than 40 nitrate respiration-deficient mutants of Haloferax volcanii belonging to three different phenotypic classes were isolated. All 15 mutants of the null phenotype were complemented with a genomic library of the wild type. Wild-type copies of mutated genes were recovered from complemented mutants using two different approaches. The DNA sequences of 13 isolated fragments were determined. Five fragments were found to overlap; therefore nine different genomic regions containing genes essential for nitrate respiration could be identified. Three genomic regions containing genes coding for subunits of ABC transporters were further characterized. In two cases, genes coding for an ATP-binding subunit and a permease subunit were clustered and overlapped by four nucleotides. The third gene for a permease subunit had no additional ABC transporter gene in proximity. One ABC transporter was found to be glucose specific. The mutant reveals that the ABC transporter solely mediates anaerobic glucose transport. Based on sequence similarity, the second ABC transporter is proposed to be molybdate specific, explaining its essential role in nitrate respiration. The third ABC transporter is proposed to be anion specific. Genome sequencing has shown that ABC transporters are widespread in Archaea. Nevertheless, this study represents only the second example of a functional characterization. PMID:10430572

  1. Ubiquitin-like Small Archaeal Modifier Proteins (SAMPs) in Haloferax volcanii

    PubMed Central

    Humbard, Matthew A.; Miranda, Hugo V.; Lim, Jae-Min; Krause, David J.; Pritz, Jonathan R.; Zhou, Guangyin; Chen, Sixue; Wells, Lance; Maupin-Furlow, Julie A.

    2010-01-01

    Summary Archaea, one of three major evolutionary lineages of life, encode proteasomes highly related to those of eukaryotes. In contrast, archaeal ubiquitin-like proteins are less conserved and not known to function in protein conjugation. This has complicated our understanding of the origins of ubiquitination and its connection to proteasomes. Here we report two small archaeal modifier proteins, SAMP1 and SAMP2, with a β-grasp fold and C-terminal diglycine motif similar to ubiquitin, that form protein-conjugates in the archaeon Haloferax volcanii. SAMP-conjugates were altered by nitrogen-limitation and proteasomal gene knockout and spanned various functions including components of the Urm1 pathway. LC-MS/MS-based collision-induced dissociation demonstrated isopeptide bonds between the C-terminal glycine of SAMP2 and the ε-amino group of lysines from a number of protein targets and Lys58 of SAMP2 itself, revealing poly-SAMP chains. The widespread distribution and diversity of pathways modified by SAMPylation suggest this type of protein-conjugation is central to the archaeal lineage. PMID:20054389

  2. The effect of ammonium on assimilatory nitrate reduction in the haloarchaeon Haloferax mediterranei.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Espinosa, Rosa María; Lledó, Belén; Marhuenda-Egea, Frutos C; Bonete, María José

    2007-11-01

    Physiology, regulation and biochemical aspects of the nitrogen assimilation are well known in Prokarya or Eukarya but they are poorly described in Archaea domain. The haloarchaeon Haloferax mediterranei can use different nitrogen inorganic sources (NO (3) (-) , NO (2) (-) or NH (4) (+) ) for growth. Different approaches were considered to study the effect of NH (4) (+) on nitrogen assimilation in Hfx. mediterranei cells grown in KNO(3) medium. The NH (4) (+) addition to KNO(3) medium caused a decrease of assimilatory nitrate (Nas) and nitrite reductases (NiR) activities. Similar effects were observed when nitrate-growing cells were transferred to NH (4) (+) media. Both activities increased when NH (4) (+) was removed from culture, showing that the negative effect of NH (4) (+) on this pathway is reversible. These results suggest that ammonium causes the inhibition of the assimilatory nitrate pathway, while nitrate exerts a positive effect. This pattern has been confirmed by RT-PCR. In the presence of both NO (3) (-) and NH (4) (+) , NH (4) (+) was preferentially consumed, but NO (3) (-) uptake was not completely inhibited by NH (4) (+) at prolonged time scale. The addition of MSX to NH (4) (+) or NO (3) (-) cultures results in an increase of Nas and NiR activities, suggesting that NH (4) (+) assimilation, rather than NH (4) (+ ) per se, has a negative effect on assimilatory nitrate reduction in Hfx. mediterranei. PMID:17572840

  3. Carotenoids' production from halophilic bacteria.

    PubMed

    de Lourdes Moreno, María; Sánchez-Porro, Cristina; García, María Teresa; Mellado, Encarnación

    2012-01-01

    Carotenoids have received considerable attention due to their interesting industrial applications and, more importantly, their potential beneficial effects on human health. Halophiles comprise a heterogeneous group of microorganisms that need salts for optimal growth. The pigments produced by these halophilic organisms comprise phytoene, β-carotene, lycopene, derivatives of bacterioruberin, and salinixanthin. Here, we describe the procedure to obtain salinixanthin from the extremely halophilic bacterium Salinibacter ruber. Additionally, we describe the expression of the β-carotene biosynthetic genes crtE, crtY, crtI, and crtB from Pantoea agglomerans in the moderately halophilic bacterium Halomonas elongata obtaining a strain able to produce practically pure β-carotene. Thus, the use of these halophilic microorganisms as a source of carotenoids constitutes an important commercial alternative in the production of carotenoids from biological sources. PMID:22623305

  4. Utilization of vinasse for production of poly-3-(hydroxybutyrate-co-hydroxyvalerate) by Haloferax mediterranei.

    PubMed

    Bhattacharyya, Anirban; Pramanik, Arnab; Maji, Sudipta Kumar; Haldar, Saubhik; Mukhopadhyay, Ujjal Kumar; Mukherjee, Joydeep

    2012-01-01

    Vinasse, a highly polluting waste of the ethanol industry was utilized for the production of polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) by the extremely halophilic archaeon, Haloferax mediterranei in shake-flasks. Following pre-treatment through adsorption on activated carbon, 25%-50% (v/v) pre-treated vinasse was utilized leading to 70% maximum accumulation of PHA. Maximum PHA concentration of 19.7 g/l, product yield coefficient (based on total carbohydrates) of 0.87 and 0.21 g/l h volumetric productivity were achieved. Concomitant lowering of BOD5 of pre-treated vinasse by at least 78% and COD by at least 80% was attained at the end of this process. The PHA was recovered by osmotic lysis of the cells and purification by sodium hypochlorite and organic solvents. Through UV-vis spectroscopy, gas chromatography, differential scanning calorimetry and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, the PHA was identified as poly-3-(hydroxybutyrate-co-hydroxyvalerate). The 3-hydroxyvalerate content was 12.36 mol % (utilizing 25% pre-treated vinasse) and 14.09 mol % (utilizing 50% pre-treated vinasse). High salt concentration in the medium allowed this process without sterile conditions and thus reduction in costs of sterilization can be envisaged. Activated charcoal pre-treatment of vinasse is economical than competing processes such as ultrafiltration of whey, extrusion and enzymatic treatment of rice and corn starch. Without impacting sugar prices, this process can easily be integrated into a distillery that has fermentation equipment and trained personnel. High PHA content, productivity, zero-cost carbon source, low-cost isolation of a high-purity product and potential integration into ethanol manufacturing unit with concomitant wastewater treatment should merit further development of this process to higher scales. PMID:22776040

  5. Utilization of vinasse for production of poly-3-(hydroxybutyrate-co-hydroxyvalerate) by Haloferax mediterranei

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Vinasse, a highly polluting waste of the ethanol industry was utilized for the production of polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) by the extremely halophilic archaeon, Haloferax mediterranei in shake-flasks. Following pre-treatment through adsorption on activated carbon, 25%-50% (v/v) pre-treated vinasse was utilized leading to 70% maximum accumulation of PHA. Maximum PHA concentration of 19.7 g/l, product yield coefficient (based on total carbohydrates) of 0.87 and 0.21 g/l h volumetric productivity were achieved. Concomitant lowering of BOD5 of pre-treated vinasse by at least 78% and COD by at least 80% was attained at the end of this process. The PHA was recovered by osmotic lysis of the cells and purification by sodium hypochlorite and organic solvents. Through UV–vis spectroscopy, gas chromatography, differential scanning calorimetry and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, the PHA was identified as poly-3-(hydroxybutyrate-co-hydroxyvalerate). The 3-hydroxyvalerate content was 12.36 mol % (utilizing 25% pre-treated vinasse) and 14.09 mol % (utilizing 50% pre-treated vinasse). High salt concentration in the medium allowed this process without sterile conditions and thus reduction in costs of sterilization can be envisaged. Activated charcoal pre-treatment of vinasse is economical than competing processes such as ultrafiltration of whey, extrusion and enzymatic treatment of rice and corn starch. Without impacting sugar prices, this process can easily be integrated into a distillery that has fermentation equipment and trained personnel. High PHA content, productivity, zero-cost carbon source, low-cost isolation of a high-purity product and potential integration into ethanol manufacturing unit with concomitant wastewater treatment should merit further development of this process to higher scales. PMID:22776040

  6. Genetic and Physical Mapping of DNA Replication Origins in Haloferax volcanii

    PubMed Central

    Hartman, Amber L; Eisen, Jonathan A; Myllykallio, Hannu; Allers, Thorsten

    2007-01-01

    The halophilic archaeon Haloferax volcanii has a multireplicon genome, consisting of a main chromosome, three secondary chromosomes, and a plasmid. Genes for the initiator protein Cdc6/Orc1, which are commonly located adjacent to archaeal origins of DNA replication, are found on all replicons except plasmid pHV2. However, prediction of DNA replication origins in H. volcanii is complicated by the fact that this species has no less than 14 cdc6/orc1 genes. We have used a combination of genetic, biochemical, and bioinformatic approaches to map DNA replication origins in H. volcanii. Five autonomously replicating sequences were found adjacent to cdc6/orc1 genes and replication initiation point mapping was used to confirm that these sequences function as bidirectional DNA replication origins in vivo. Pulsed field gel analyses revealed that cdc6/orc1-associated replication origins are distributed not only on the main chromosome (2.9 Mb) but also on pHV1 (86 kb), pHV3 (442 kb), and pHV4 (690 kb) replicons. Gene inactivation studies indicate that linkage of the initiator gene to the origin is not required for replication initiation, and genetic tests with autonomously replicating plasmids suggest that the origin located on pHV1 and pHV4 may be dominant to the principal chromosomal origin. The replication origins we have identified appear to show a functional hierarchy or differential usage, which might reflect the different replication requirements of their respective chromosomes. We propose that duplication of H. volcanii replication origins was a prerequisite for the multireplicon structure of this genome, and that this might provide a means for chromosome-specific replication control under certain growth conditions. Our observations also suggest that H. volcanii is an ideal organism for studying how replication of four replicons is regulated in the context of the archaeal cell cycle. PMID:17511521

  7. ATP Synthesis in the Extremely Halophilic Bacteria

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hochstein, Lawrence I.; Morrison, David (Technical Monitor)

    1994-01-01

    Archaea). One, the V-like enzyme which, provides protons that are subsequently used for solute translocation. The other ATPase is the familiar and ubiquitous F-ATPase that functions as a reversible proton pump and is the ATP Synthase in the extreme halophiles. Thus, while the suggested evolution of the proton -translocating ATPases accounts for the relationship among these ATPases, this scheme does not account for the presence of F-ATPases in the Archaea. Discounting lateral gene transfer, perhaps an F-type ATPase evolved before the eucaryal-archaeal and bacterial bifurcation. The presence of V-type ATPases in the Bacterial Domain is consistent with this suggestion. Finally, it is of interest to note that if an F-type ATPase appeared before the bifurcation, an endosymbiotic event need not be invoked to explain the presence of F-ATPases in the Eucarya.

  8. Archaea on human skin.

    PubMed

    Probst, Alexander J; Auerbach, Anna K; Moissl-Eichinger, Christine

    2013-01-01

    The recent era of exploring the human microbiome has provided valuable information on microbial inhabitants, beneficials and pathogens. Screening efforts based on DNA sequencing identified thousands of bacterial lineages associated with human skin but provided only incomplete and crude information on Archaea. Here, we report for the first time the quantification and visualization of Archaea from human skin. Based on 16 S rRNA gene copies Archaea comprised up to 4.2% of the prokaryotic skin microbiome. Most of the gene signatures analyzed belonged to the Thaumarchaeota, a group of Archaea we also found in hospitals and clean room facilities. The metabolic potential for ammonia oxidation of the skin-associated Archaea was supported by the successful detection of thaumarchaeal amoA genes in human skin samples. However, the activity and possible interaction with human epithelial cells of these associated Archaea remains an open question. Nevertheless, in this study we provide evidence that Archaea are part of the human skin microbiome and discuss their potential for ammonia turnover on human skin. PMID:23776475

  9. Raman spectroscopy in halophile research.

    PubMed

    Jehlička, Jan; Oren, Aharon

    2013-01-01

    Raman spectroscopy plays a major role in robust detection of biomolecules and mineral signatures in halophile research. An overview of Raman spectroscopic investigations in halophile research of the last decade is given here to show advantages of the approach, progress made as well as limits of the technique. Raman spectroscopy is an excellent tool to monitor and identify microbial pigments and other biomolecules in extant and extinct halophile biomass. Studies of bottom gypsum crusts from salterns, native evaporitic sediments, halite inclusions, and endoliths as well as cultures of halophilic microorganisms permitted to understand the content, distribution, and behavior of important molecular species. The first papers describing Raman spectroscopic detection of microbiological and geochemical key markers using portable instruments are highlighted as well. PMID:24339823

  10. Raman spectroscopy in halophile research

    PubMed Central

    Jehlička, Jan; Oren, Aharon

    2013-01-01

    Raman spectroscopy plays a major role in robust detection of biomolecules and mineral signatures in halophile research. An overview of Raman spectroscopic investigations in halophile research of the last decade is given here to show advantages of the approach, progress made as well as limits of the technique. Raman spectroscopy is an excellent tool to monitor and identify microbial pigments and other biomolecules in extant and extinct halophile biomass. Studies of bottom gypsum crusts from salterns, native evaporitic sediments, halite inclusions, and endoliths as well as cultures of halophilic microorganisms permitted to understand the content, distribution, and behavior of important molecular species. The first papers describing Raman spectroscopic detection of microbiological and geochemical key markers using portable instruments are highlighted as well. PMID:24339823

  11. Terrestrial models for extraterrestrial life: methanogens and halophiles at Martian temperatures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reid, I. N.; Sparks, W. B.; Lubow, S.; McGrath, M.; Livio, M.; Valenti, J.; Sowers, K. R.; Shukla, H. D.; MacAuley, S.; Miller, T.; Suvanasuthi, R.; Belas, R.; Colman, A.; Robb, F. T.; Dassarma, P.; Müller, J. A.; Coker, J. A.; Cavicchioli, R.; Chen, F.; Dassarma, S.

    2006-08-01

    Cold environments are common throughout the Galaxy. We are conducting a series of experiments designed to probe the low-temperature limits for growth in selected methanogenic and halophilic Archaea. This paper presents initial results for two mesophiles, a methanogen, Methanosarcina acetivorans, and a halophile, Halobacterium sp. NRC-1, and for two Antarctic cold-adapted Archaea, a methanogen, Methanococcoides burtonii, and a halophile, Halorubrum lacusprofundi. Neither mesophile is active at temperatures below 5 °C, but both cold-adapted microorganisms show significant growth at sub-zero temperatures (-2 °C and -1 °C, respectively), extending previous low-temperature limits for both species by 4 5 °C. At low temperatures, both H. lacusprofundi and M. burtonii form multicellular aggregates, which appear to be embedded in extracellular polymeric substances. This is the first detection of this phenomenon in Antarctic species of Archaea at cold temperatures. The low-temperature limits for both psychrophilic species fall within the temperature range experienced on present-day Mars and could permit survival and growth, particularly in sub-surface environments. We also discuss the results of our experiments in the context of known exoplanet systems, several of which include planets that intersect the Habitable Zone. In most cases, those planets follow orbits with significant eccentricity, leading to substantial temperature excursions. However, a handful of the known gas giant exoplanets could potentially harbour habitable terrestrial moons.

  12. Archaea were widespread in sediments of the Messinian Salinity Crisis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Birgel, Daniel; Peckmann, Jörn

    2015-04-01

    The Messinian salinity crisis (MSC) was among the most extreme and short-lived paleooceanographic events in Earth history and dramatically impacted the depositional environments of the Mediterranean. Many of the Messinian sedimentary sequences reflect environmental variability on extremely short time scales, typified by phenomena like evaporation and high salinities, anoxia, and desiccation. Only few organisms tolerate such severe conditions. Among those are archaea, many of which are especially well adapted to extreme conditions. We studied various MSC locations and deposits to shed light onto the role of archaea in the MSC, focusing on lipid biomarkers. These are (1) primary gypsum with abundant, yet problematic filamentous microfossils from various locations in the Mediterranean, (2) Calcare di Base, limestones from Sicily and Calabria, and (3) Calcare Solfifero, authigenic carbonates associated with native sulfur from Sicily. (1) Primary gypsum beds with abundant filamentous fossils are widespread in the Mediterranean. Archaea were found as important contributor of organic matter in these evaporites. The filaments, however, have previously been interpreted to represent cyanobacteria based on the extraction and amplification of cyanobacterial DNA. Cyanobacteria produce specific and long-lasting biomarkers, but no such compounds were found in the studied deposits, thus, the assignment of the filaments to cyanobacteria necessitates further verification. (2) The Calcare di Base are widespread, genetically heterogeneous Messinian limestones, which are particularly common in Sicily and Calabria. The environmental conditions during their deposition, as well as mechanisms and timing of formation are a matter of debate. The studied Calcare di Base samples were found to contain specific halophilic archaeal signatures and numerous pseudomorphs after halite. (3) The Calcare Solfifero, authigenic carbonates accompanied by elemental sulfur formed in the course of microbial

  13. Archaea in Symbioses

    PubMed Central

    Wrede, Christoph; Dreier, Anne; Kokoschka, Sebastian; Hoppert, Michael

    2012-01-01

    During the last few years, the analysis of microbial diversity in various habitats greatly increased our knowledge on the kingdom Archaea. At the same time, we became aware of the multiple ways in which Archaea may interact with each other and with organisms of other kingdoms. The large group of euryarchaeal methanogens and their methane oxidizing relatives, in particular, take part in essential steps of the global methane cycle. Both of these processes, which are in reverse to each other, are partially conducted in a symbiotic interaction with different partners, either ciliates and xylophagous animals or sulfate reducing bacteria. Other symbiotic interactions are mostly of unknown ecological significance but depend on highly specific mechanisms. This paper will give an overview on interactions between Archaea and other organisms and will point out the ecological relevance of these symbiotic processes, as long as these have been already recognized. PMID:23326206

  14. Deletion of the Sm1 encoding motif in the lsm gene results in distinct changes in the transcriptome and enhanced swarming activity of Haloferax cells.

    PubMed

    Maier, Lisa-Katharina; Benz, Juliane; Fischer, Susan; Alstetter, Martina; Jaschinski, Katharina; Hilker, Rolf; Becker, Anke; Allers, Thorsten; Soppa, Jörg; Marchfelder, Anita

    2015-10-01

    Members of the Sm protein family are important for the cellular RNA metabolism in all three domains of life. The family includes archaeal and eukaryotic Lsm proteins, eukaryotic Sm proteins and archaeal and bacterial Hfq proteins. While several studies concerning the bacterial and eukaryotic family members have been published, little is known about the archaeal Lsm proteins. Although structures for several archaeal Lsm proteins have been solved already more than ten years ago, we still do not know much about their biological function, however one can confidently propose that the archaeal Lsm proteins will also be involved in RNA metabolism. Therefore, we investigated this protein in the halophilic archaeon Haloferax volcanii. The Haloferax genome encodes a single Lsm protein, the lsm gene overlaps and is co-transcribed with the gene for the ribosomal L37.eR protein. Here, we show that the reading frame of the lsm gene contains a promoter which regulates expression of the overlapping rpl37R gene. This rpl37R specific promoter ensures high expression of the rpl37R gene in exponential growth phase. To investigate the biological function of the Lsm protein we generated a lsm deletion mutant that had the coding sequence for the Sm1 motif removed but still contained the internal promoter for the downstream rpl37R gene. The transcriptome of this deletion mutant was compared to the wild type transcriptome, revealing that several genes are down-regulated and many genes are up-regulated in the deletion strain. Northern blot analyses confirmed down-regulation of two genes. In addition, the deletion strain showed a gain of function in swarming, in congruence with the up-regulation of transcripts encoding proteins required for motility. PMID:25754521

  15. Bioenergetics of the Archaea

    PubMed Central

    Schäfer, Günter; Engelhard, Martin; Müller, Volker

    1999-01-01

    In the late 1970s, on the basis of rRNA phylogeny, Archaea (archaebacteria) was identified as a distinct domain of life besides Bacteria (eubacteria) and Eucarya. Though forming a separate domain, archaea display an enormous diversity of lifestyles and metabolic capabilities. Many archaeal species are adapted to extreme environments with respect to salinity, temperatures around the boiling point of water, and/or extremely alkaline or acidic pH. This has posed the challenge of studying the molecular and mechanistic bases on which these organisms can cope with such adverse conditions. This review considers our cumulative knowledge on archaeal mechanisms of primary energy conservation, in relationship to those of bacteria and eucarya. Although the universal principle of chemiosmotic energy conservation also holds for Archaea, distinct features have been discovered with respect to novel ion-transducing, membrane-residing protein complexes and the use of novel cofactors in bioenergetics of methanogenesis. From aerobically respiring archaea, unusual electron-transporting supercomplexes could be isolated and functionally resolved, and a proposal on the organization of archaeal electron transport chains has been presented. The unique functions of archaeal rhodopsins as sensory systems and as proton or chloride pumps have been elucidated on the basis of recent structural information on the atomic scale. Whereas components of methanogenesis and of phototrophic energy transduction in halobacteria appear to be unique to archaea, respiratory complexes and the ATP synthase exhibit some chimeric features with respect to their evolutionary origin. Nevertheless, archaeal ATP synthases are to be considered distinct members of this family of secondary energy transducers. A major challenge to future investigations is the development of archaeal genetic transformation systems, in order to gain access to the regulation of bioenergetic systems and to overproducers of archaeal membrane

  16. Haloferax volcanii archaeosortase is required for motility, mating, and C-terminal processing of the S-layer glycoprotein: Haloferax volcanii archeosortase

    SciTech Connect

    Abdul Halim, Mohd Farid; Pfeiffer, Friedhelm; Zou, James; Frisch, Andrew; Haft, Daniel; Wu, Si; Tolić, Nikola; Brewer, Heather; Payne, Samuel H.; Paša-Tolić, Ljiljana; Pohlschroder, Mechthild

    2013-05-28

    Cell surfaces are decorated by a variety of proteins that facilitate interactions with their environments and support cell stability.These secreted proteins are anchored to the cell by mechanisms that are diverse, and, in archaea, poorly understood. Recently published in silico data suggest that in some species a subset of secreted euryarchaeal proteins, which includes the S-­layer glycoprotein, is processed and covalently linked tot he cell membrane by enzymes referred to as archaeosortases. In silico work led to the proposal that an independent, sortase-like system for proteolysis-coupled carboxy-terminal lipid modification exists in bacteria (exosortase) and archaea (archaeosortase). Here, we provide the first in vivo characterization of an archaeosortase in the haloarchaeal model organism Haloferax volcanii. Deletion of the artA gene (HVO_0915) resulted in multiple biological phenotypes: (a) poor growth, especially under low-salt conditions, (b) alterations in cell shape and the S-layer, (c) impaired motility, suppressors of which still exhibit poor growth, and (d) impaired conjugation. We studied one of the ArtA substrates, the S-layer glycoprotein, using detailed proteomic analysis. While the carboxy-terminal region of S-layer glycoproteins, consisting of a threonine-rich O-glycosylated region followed by a hydrophobic transmembrane helix, has been notoriously resistant to any proteomic peptide identification, we were able to identify two overlapping peptides from the transmembrane domain present in the ΔartA strain but not in the wild-type strain. This clearly shows that ArtA is involved in carboxy-terminal posttranslational processing of the S-layer glycoprotein. As it is known from previous studies that a lipid is covalently attached to the carboxy-terminal region of the S-layer glycoprotein, our data strongly support the conclusion that archaeosortase functions analogously to sortase, mediating proteolysis-coupled, covalent cell surface attachment.

  17. Evolution of halophiles: A terrestrial analog for life in Brines on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mancinelli, R.

    2003-04-01

    Halophiles are salt "loving" organisms that inhabit environments with salt concentrations ranging from 15% to saturation. Representatives of halophiles occur in the Archaea, Bacteria and Eucarya. Adaptation to high salt can be achieved by the accumulation of organic osmotic solutes without the need for adaptation of the intracellular proteins. This mechanism is found in all three domains of life. The second mechanism is the intracellular accumulation of high concentrations of KCl, requiring adaptation of intracellular physiology to function in the presence of high ionic concentrations. This mechanism is found in the Archaea and in the Bacteria. The phylogenetic and physiological diversity among the halophiles suggests that it may have arisen more the once during evolution and is not a rarity. Because data from Mars missions suggest that Mars almost certainly had abundant liquid water on its surface at some time in the past. It could have harbored some form of life in its past As Mars lost its atmosphere it not only became cold but also dry due to water evaporation. As the water evaporated the dissolved minerals became more concentrated forming salty brine pockets. Because data from earth suggests that it may be relatively easy for halophilic type organisms to evolve if there were any life on mars in water there should have been some type of osmophile, or halophile. Brine pockets containing high concentrations of dissolved salts would have selected for the survival of halophiles. These brine pockets may either be an "oasis" for an extant Martian biota, or the last refuge of an extinct Martian biota. Eventually near surface brine pockets would have dried to form evaporites. Evaporites are deposits that result from the evaporation water containing salts, on earth consisting primarily of halite (NaCl) gypsum (CaSO_4 . 2H_2O) or anhydrite (CaSO_4). Evaporites containing bacterial and algal assemblages exist on earth today and are well-known in the fossil record.. Data

  18. Are extreme halophiles actually 'bacteria'

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Magrum, L. J.; Luehrsen, K. R.; Woese, C. R.

    1978-01-01

    Comparative cataloging of the 16S rRNA of Halobacterium halobium indicates that the organism did not arise, as a halophilic adaptation, from some typical bacterium. Rather, H. halobium is a member of the Archaebacteria, an ancient group of organisms that are no more related to typical bacteria than they are to eucaryotes.

  19. Two Distinct N-Glycosylation Pathways Process the Haloferax volcanii S-Layer Glycoprotein upon Changes in Environmental Salinity

    PubMed Central

    Kaminski, Lina; Guan, Ziqiang; Yurist-Doutsch, Sophie; Eichler, Jerry

    2013-01-01

    ABSTRACT N-glycosylation in Archaea presents aspects of this posttranslational modification not seen in either Eukarya or Bacteria. In the haloarchaeon Haloferax volcanii, the surface (S)-layer glycoprotein can be simultaneously modified by two different N-glycans. Asn-13 and Asn-83 are modified by a pentasaccharide, whereas Asn-498 is modified by a tetrasaccharide of distinct composition, with N-glycosylation at this position being related to environmental conditions. Specifically, N-glycosylation of Asn-498 is detected when cells are grown in the presence of 1.75 but not 3.4 M NaCl. While deletion of genes encoding components of the pentasaccharide assembly pathway had no effect on the biosynthesis of the tetrasaccharide bound to Asn-498, deletion of genes within the cluster spanning HVO_2046 to HVO_2061 interfered with the assembly and attachment of the Asn-498-linked tetrasaccharide. Transfer of the “low-salt” tetrasaccharide from the dolichol phosphate carrier upon which it is assembled to S-layer glycoprotein Asn-498 did not require AglB, the oligosaccharyltransferase responsible for pentasaccharide attachment to Asn-13 and Asn-83. Finally, although biogenesis of the low-salt tetrasaccharide is barely discernible upon growth at the elevated salinity, this glycan was readily detected under such conditions in strains deleted of pentasaccharide biosynthesis pathway genes, indicative of cross talk between the two N-glycosylation pathways. PMID:24194539

  20. Metabolic flux analysis of the halophilic archaeon Haladaptatus paucihalophilus.

    PubMed

    Liu, Guangxiu; Zhang, Manxiao; Mo, Tianlu; He, Lian; Zhang, Wei; Yu, Yi; Zhang, Qi; Ding, Wei

    2015-11-27

    This work reports the (13)C-assisted metabolic flux analysis of Haladaptatus paucihalophilus, a halophilic archaeon possessing an intriguing osmoadaption mechanism. We showed that the carbon flow is through the oxidative tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle whereas the reductive TCA cycle is not operative in H. paucihalophilus. In addition, both threonine and the citramalate pathways contribute to isoleucine biosynthesis, whereas lysine is synthesized through the diaminopimelate pathway and not through the α-aminoadipate pathway. Unexpected, the labeling patterns of glycine from the cells grown on [1-(13)C]pyruvate and [2-(13)C]pyruvate suggest that, unlike all the organisms investigated so far, in which glycine is produced exclusively from the serine hydroxymethyltransferase (SHMT) pathway, glycine biosynthesis in H. paucihalophilus involves different pathways including SHMT, threonine aldolase (TA) and the reverse reaction of glycine cleavage system (GCS), demonstrating for the first time that other pathways instead of SHMT can also make a significant contribution to the cellular glycine pool. Transcriptional analysis confirmed that both TA and GCS genes were transcribed in H. paucihalophilus, and the transcriptional level is independent of salt concentrations in the culture media. This study expands our understanding of amino acid biosynthesis and provides valuable insights into the metabolism of halophilic archaea. PMID:26441084

  1. Biodeterioration Risk Threatens the 3100 Year Old Staircase of Hallstatt (Austria): Possible Involvement of Halophilic Microorganisms

    PubMed Central

    Piñar, Guadalupe; Dalnodar, Dennis; Voitl, Christian; Reschreiter, Hans; Sterflinger, Katja

    2016-01-01

    Background The prosperity of Hallstatt (Salzkammergut region, Austria) is based on the richness of salt in the surrounding mountains and salt mining, which is documented as far back as 1500 years B.C. Substantial archaeological evidence of Bronze and Iron Age salt mining has been discovered, with a wooden staircase (1108 B.C.) being one of the most impressive and well preserved finds. However, after its discovery, fungal mycelia have been observed on the surface of the staircase, most probably due to airborne contamination after its find. Objective As a basis for the further preservation of this valuable object, the active micro-flora was examined to investigate the presence of potentially biodegradative microorganisms. Results Most of the strains isolated from the staircase showed to be halotolerant and halophilic microorganisms, due to the saline environment of the mine. Results derived from culture-dependent assays revealed a high fungal diversity, including both halotolerant and halophilic fungi, the most dominant strains being members of the genus Phialosimplex (synonym: Aspergillus). Additionally, some typical cellulose degraders, namely Stachybotrys sp. and Cladosporium sp. were detected. Numerous bacterial strains were isolated and identified as members of 12 different genera, most of them being moderately halophilic species. The most dominant isolates affiliated with species of the genera Halovibrio and Marinococcus. Halophilic archaea were also isolated and identified as species of the genera Halococcus and Halorubrum. Molecular analyses complemented the cultivation assays, enabling the identification of some uncultivable archaea of the genera Halolamina, Haloplanus and Halobacterium. Results derived from fungi and bacteria supported those obtained by cultivation methods, exhibiting the same dominant members in the communities. Conclusion The results clearly showed the presence of some cellulose degraders that may become active if the requirements for

  2. Archaea in Yellowstone Lake

    PubMed Central

    Kan, Jinjun; Clingenpeel, Scott; Macur, Richard E; Inskeep, William P; Lovalvo, Dave; Varley, John; Gorby, Yuri; McDermott, Timothy R; Nealson, Kenneth

    2011-01-01

    The Yellowstone geothermal complex has yielded foundational discoveries that have significantly enhanced our understanding of the Archaea. This study continues on this theme, examining Yellowstone Lake and its lake floor hydrothermal vents. Significant Archaea novelty and diversity were found associated with two near-surface photic zone environments and two vents that varied in their depth, temperature and geochemical profile. Phylogenetic diversity was assessed using 454-FLX sequencing (∼51 000 pyrosequencing reads; V1 and V2 regions) and Sanger sequencing of 200 near-full-length polymerase chain reaction (PCR) clones. Automated classifiers (Ribosomal Database Project (RDP) and Greengenes) were problematic for the 454-FLX reads (wrong domain or phylum), although BLAST analysis of the 454-FLX reads against the phylogenetically placed full-length Sanger sequenced PCR clones proved reliable. Most of the archaeal diversity was associated with vents, and as expected there were differences between the vents and the near-surface photic zone samples. Thaumarchaeota dominated all samples: vent-associated organisms corresponded to the largely uncharacterized Marine Group I, and in surface waters, ∼69–84% of the 454-FLX reads matched archaeal clones representing organisms that are Nitrosopumilus maritimus-like (96–97% identity). Importance of the lake nitrogen cycling was also suggested by >5% of the alkaline vent phylotypes being closely related to the nitrifier Candidatus Nitrosocaldus yellowstonii. The Euryarchaeota were primarily related to the uncharacterized environmental clones that make up the Deep Sea Euryarchaeal Group or Deep Sea Hydrothermal Vent Group-6. The phylogenetic parallels of Yellowstone Lake archaea to marine microorganisms provide opportunities to examine interesting evolutionary tracks between freshwater and marine lineages. PMID:21544103

  3. Overview of Archaea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pikuta, Elena V.

    2011-10-01

    Archaea were separated from Eubacteria after discovery of their specifics in cell outer membrane that usually not affected by common antibiotics. Phylogenetic analysis introduced by Karl Wöese supported this separation. Presently, only two phyla Crenarchaeota and Euryarchaeota include the valid representatives. Another three phyla that were proposed based on the sequence analysis of environmental samples, do not contain validly published species, and for this reason they are not included in this review. The phylum Euryarchaeota currently includes eight classes and ten orders, while the Crenarchaeota phylum contains the only class with five orders. Members of the phyla Crenarchaeota have two or three family B and no family D DNA polymerases, but members of the Euryarchaeota contain the only family B polymerases and the only family D polymerases, and it is still not clear, which is the main functional enzyme in the replication process. In this article, we are present an update and comparative analysis for this domain, discussing unique features of this group and Evolution, estimating their physiology within the matrix of physic-chemical factors, and outlining future perspectives in their study. Rules of the diagonal for the diagrams with all Archaea are presented and discussed.

  4. Transcription in archaea

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kyrpides, N. C.; Ouzounis, C. A.; Woese, C. R. (Principal Investigator)

    1999-01-01

    Using the sequences of all the known transcription-associated proteins from Bacteria and Eucarya (a total of 4,147), we have identified their homologous counterparts in the four complete archaeal genomes. Through extensive sequence comparisons, we establish the presence of 280 predicted transcription factors or transcription-associated proteins in the four archaeal genomes, of which 168 have homologs only in Bacteria, 51 have homologs only in Eucarya, and the remaining 61 have homologs in both phylogenetic domains. Although bacterial and eukaryotic transcription have very few factors in common, each exclusively shares a significantly greater number with the Archaea, especially the Bacteria. This last fact contrasts with the obvious close relationship between the archaeal and eukaryotic transcription mechanisms per se, and in particular, basic transcription initiation. We interpret these results to mean that the archaeal transcription system has retained more ancestral characteristics than have the transcription mechanisms in either of the other two domains.

  5. Osmoadaptation in archaea

    SciTech Connect

    Martin, D.D.; Ciulla, R.A.; Roberts, M.F.

    1999-05-01

    The ability to adapt to fluctuations in external osmotic pressure (osmoadaptation) and the development of specific mechanisms to achieve this (osmoregulation) are fundamental to the survival of cells. Most cells maintain an osmotic pressure in the cytoplasm that is higher than that of the surrounding environment, resulting in an outward-directed pressure, turgor, whose maintenance is essential for cell division and growth. Changes in environmental osmolarity can trigger the flux of water across the cytoplasmic membrane. Thus, to avoid lysis under low-osmolarity or dehydration under high-osmolarity growth conditions, cells must possess active mechanisms that permit timely and efficient adaptation to changes in environmental osmolarity. Archaea, which are often found in high-salt as well as high-temperature environments, use the same general strategies for osmoadaptation as eubacterial and eukaryotic organisms. However, they are notable for the unusual organic osmolytes accumulated. Specific examples of these osmolytes and factors that affect their accumulation are provided in this research.

  6. Transcription Regulation in Archaea.

    PubMed

    Gehring, Alexandra M; Walker, Julie E; Santangelo, Thomas J

    2016-07-15

    The known diversity of metabolic strategies and physiological adaptations of archaeal species to extreme environments is extraordinary. Accurate and responsive mechanisms to ensure that gene expression patterns match the needs of the cell necessitate regulatory strategies that control the activities and output of the archaeal transcription apparatus. Archaea are reliant on a single RNA polymerase for all transcription, and many of the known regulatory mechanisms employed for archaeal transcription mimic strategies also employed for eukaryotic and bacterial species. Novel mechanisms of transcription regulation have become apparent by increasingly sophisticated in vivo and in vitro investigations of archaeal species. This review emphasizes recent progress in understanding archaeal transcription regulatory mechanisms and highlights insights gained from studies of the influence of archaeal chromatin on transcription. PMID:27137495

  7. The sequence of Methanospirillum hungatei 23S rRNA confirms the specific relationship between the extreme halophiles and the Methanomicrobiales

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burggraf, S.; Ching, A.; Stetter, K. O.; Woese, C. R.

    1991-01-01

    We have determined the sequence of the 23S rRNA from the methanogenic archaeon Methanospirillum hungatei. This is the first such sequence from a member of the Methanomicrobiales. Moreover, it brings additional evidence to bear on the possible specific relationship between this particular group of methanogens and the extreme halophiles. Such evidence is critical in that several new (and relatively untested) methods of phylogenetic inference have lead to the controversial conclusion that the extreme halophiles are either not related to the archaea, or are only peripherally so. Analysis of the Methanospirillum hungatei 23S rRNA sequence shows the Methanomicrobiales are indeed a sister group of the extreme halophiles, further strengthening the conclusions reached from analysis of 16S rRNA sequences.

  8. Analysis of metagenomic data reveals common features of halophilic viral communities across continents.

    PubMed

    Roux, Simon; Enault, Francois; Ravet, Viviane; Colombet, Jonathan; Bettarel, Yvan; Auguet, Jean-Christophe; Bouvier, Thierry; Lucas-Staat, Soizick; Vellet, Agnès; Prangishvili, David; Forterre, Patrick; Debroas, Didier; Sime-Ngando, Telesphore

    2016-03-01

    Microbial communities from hypersaline ponds, dominated by halophilic archaea, are considered specific of such extreme conditions. The associated viral communities have accordingly been shown to display specific features, such as similar morphologies among different sites. However, little is known about the genetic diversity of these halophilic viral communities across the Earth. Here, we studied viral communities in hypersaline ponds sampled on the coast of Senegal (8-36% of salinity) using metagenomics approach, and compared them with hypersaline viromes from Australia and Spain. The specificity of hyperhalophilic viruses could first be demonstrated at a community scale, salinity being a strong discriminating factor between communities. For the major viral group detected in all samples (Caudovirales), only a limited number of halophilic Caudovirales clades were highlighted. These clades gather viruses from different continents and display consistent genetic composition, indicating that they represent related lineages with a worldwide distribution. Non-tailed hyperhalophilic viruses display a greater rate of gene transfer and recombination, with uncharacterized genes conserved across different kind of viruses and plasmids. Thus, hypersaline viral communities around the world appear to form a genetically consistent community that are likely to harbour new genes coding for enzymes specifically adapted to these environments. PMID:26472517

  9. The Evolution of Energy-Transducing Systems. Studies with an Extremely Halophilic Archaebacterium

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stan-Lotter, Helga

    1997-01-01

    The F-type ATPases are found in remarkably similar versions in the energy-transducing membranes of bacteria, chloroplasts and mitochondria (1). Thus, it is likely that they have originated early in the evolution of life, which is consistent with their function as key enzymes of cellular metabolism. The archaea (formerly called archaebacteria) are a group of microorganisms which, as shown by molecular sequencing and biochemical data, have diverged early from the main line of prokaryotic evolution (2). From studies of members of all three major groups of archaea, the halophiles, methanogens and thermoacidophiles, it emerged that they possess a membrane ATPase, which differs from the F-ATPases. The goal of this project was a comparison of the ATPase from the halophilic archaebacterium Halobacterium saccharovorum with the well-characterized F-type ATPases on the molecular level. The results were expected to allow a decision about the nature of archaebacterial ATPases, their classification as one of the known or, alternatively, novel enzyme complex, and possibly a deduction of events during the early evolution of energy-transducing systems.

  10. Archaea in artificial environments: Their presence in global spacecraft clean rooms and impact on planetary protection

    PubMed Central

    Moissl-Eichinger, Christine

    2011-01-01

    The presence and role of Archaea in artificial, human-controlled environments is still unclear. The search for Archaea has been focused on natural biotopes where they have been found in overwhelming numbers, and with amazing properties. However, they are considered as one of the major group of microorganisms that might be able to survive a space flight, or even to thrive on other planets. Although still concentrating on aerobic, bacterial spores as a proxy for spacecraft cleanliness, space agencies are beginning to consider Archaea as a possible contamination source that could affect future searches for life on other planets. This study reports on the discovery of archaeal 16S rRNA gene signatures not only in US American spacecraft assembly clean rooms but also in facilities in Europe and South America. Molecular methods revealed the presence of Crenarchaeota in all clean rooms sampled, while signatures derived from methanogens and a halophile appeared only sporadically. Although no Archaeon was successfully enriched in our multiassay cultivation approach thus far, samples from a European clean room revealed positive archaeal fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) signals of rod-shaped microorganisms, representing the first visualization of Archaea in clean room environments. The molecular and visual detection of Archaea was supported by the first quantitative PCR studies of clean rooms, estimating the overall quantity of Archaea therein. The significant presence of Archaea in these extreme environments in distinct geographical locations suggests a larger role for these microorganisms not only in natural biotopes, but also in human controlled and rigorously cleaned environments. PMID:20703318

  11. Archaea in artificial environments: their presence in global spacecraft clean rooms and impact on planetary protection.

    PubMed

    Moissl-Eichinger, Christine

    2011-02-01

    The presence and role of Archaea in artificial, human-controlled environments is still unclear. The search for Archaea has been focused on natural biotopes where they have been found in overwhelming numbers, and with amazing properties. However, they are considered as one of the major group of microorganisms that might be able to survive a space flight, or even to thrive on other planets. Although still concentrating on aerobic, bacterial spores as a proxy for spacecraft cleanliness, space agencies are beginning to consider Archaea as a possible contamination source that could affect future searches for life on other planets. This study reports on the discovery of archaeal 16S rRNA gene signatures not only in US American spacecraft assembly clean rooms but also in facilities in Europe and South America. Molecular methods revealed the presence of Crenarchaeota in all clean rooms sampled, while signatures derived from methanogens and a halophile appeared only sporadically. Although no Archaeon was successfully enriched in our multiassay cultivation approach thus far, samples from a European clean room revealed positive archaeal fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) signals of rod-shaped microorganisms, representing the first visualization of Archaea in clean room environments. The molecular and visual detection of Archaea was supported by the first quantitative PCR studies of clean rooms, estimating the overall quantity of Archaea therein. The significant presence of Archaea in these extreme environments in distinct geographical locations suggests a larger role for these microorganisms not only in natural biotopes, but also in human controlled and rigorously cleaned environments. PMID:20703318

  12. Biology of Moderately Halophilic Aerobic Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Ventosa, Antonio; Nieto, Joaquín J.; Oren, Aharon

    1998-01-01

    The moderately halophilic heterotrophic aerobic bacteria form a diverse group of microorganisms. The property of halophilism is widespread within the bacterial domain. Bacterial halophiles are abundant in environments such as salt lakes, saline soils, and salted food products. Most species keep their intracellular ionic concentrations at low levels while synthesizing or accumulating organic solutes to provide osmotic equilibrium of the cytoplasm with the surrounding medium. Complex mechanisms of adjustment of the intracellular environments and the properties of the cytoplasmic membrane enable rapid adaptation to changes in the salt concentration of the environment. Approaches to the study of genetic processes have recently been developed for several moderate halophiles, opening the way toward an understanding of haloadaptation at the molecular level. The new information obtained is also expected to contribute to the development of novel biotechnological uses for these organisms. PMID:9618450

  13. Antagonistic interactions and production of halocin antimicrobial peptides among extremely halophilic prokaryotes isolated from the solar saltern of Sfax, Tunisia.

    PubMed

    Ghanmi, Fadoua; Carré-Mlouka, Alyssa; Vandervennet, Manon; Boujelben, Ines; Frikha, Doniez; Ayadi, Habib; Peduzzi, Jean; Rebuffat, Sylvie; Maalej, Sami

    2016-05-01

    Thirty-five extremely halophilic microbial strains isolated from crystallizer (TS18) and non-crystallizer (M1) ponds in the Sfax solar saltern in Tunisia were examined for their ability to exert antimicrobial activity. Antagonistic assays resulted in the selection of eleven strains that displayed such antimicrobial activity and they were further characterized. Three cases of cross-domain inhibition (archaea/bacteria or bacteria/archaea) were observed. Four archaeal strains exerted antimicrobial activity against several other strains. Three strains, for which several lines of evidence suggested the antimicrobial activity was, at least in part, due to peptide/protein agents (Halobacterium salinarum ETD5, Hbt. salinarum ETD8, and Haloterrigena thermotolerans SS1R12), were studied further. Optimal culture conditions for growth and antimicrobial production were determined. Using DNA amplification with specific primers, sequencing and RT-PCR analysis, Hbt. salinarum ETD5 and Hbt. salinarum ETD8 were shown to encode and express halocin S8, a hydrophobic antimicrobial peptide targeting halophilic archaea. Although the gene encoding halocin H4 was amplified from the genome of Htg. thermotolerans SS1R12, no transcript could be detected and the antimicrobial activity was most likely due to multiple antimicrobial compounds. This is also the first report that points to four different strains isolated from different geographical locations with the capacity to produce identical halocin S8 proteins. PMID:27074936

  14. Halophiles, coming stars for industrial biotechnology.

    PubMed

    Yin, Jin; Chen, Jin-Chun; Wu, Qiong; Chen, Guo-Qiang

    2015-11-15

    Industrial biotechnology aims to produce chemicals, materials and biofuels to ease the challenges of shortage on petroleum. However, due to the disadvantages of bioprocesses including energy consuming sterilization, high fresh water consumption, discontinuous fermentation to avoid microbial contamination, highly expensive stainless steel fermentation facilities and competing substrates for human consumption, industrial biotechnology is less competitive compared with chemical processes. Recently, halophiles have shown promises to overcome these shortcomings. Due to their unique halophilic properties, some halophiles are able to grow in high pH and high NaCl containing medium under higher temperature, allowing fermentation processes to run contamination free under unsterile conditions and continuous way. At the same time, genetic manipulation methods have been developed for halophiles. So far, halophiles have been used to produce bioplastics polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA), ectoines, enzymes, and bio-surfactants. Increasing effects have been made to develop halophiles into a low cost platform for bioprocessing with advantages of low energy, less fresh water consumption, low fixed capital investment, and continuous production. PMID:25447783

  15. The UV limits of life on extrasolar planets: an experiment with halophile archaeabacteria at different UV doses.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abrevaya, X. C.; Adamo, H. P.; Cortó N, E.; Mauas, P. J. D.

    Terrestial-type planets around M stars are proposed as feasible places for development of life as we know it. Nevertheless many dMe stars emit large amounts of UV radiation during flares and it is unknown if these events could be deleterious for life. Since terrestrial biological systems are particularly vulnerable to this kind of radiation, this fact could set a limit for habitability. Organisms as halophile archaeabacteria were found in ancient evaporites on Earth. Evaporites have been detected in Martian meteorites, so these organisms are proposed as plausible inhabitants of Mars-like planets or other extrasolar planets. We examine the effect of UV-C on the halophile archaea Natrialba magadii. Results show that these organisms are able to survive at the UV doses tested.

  16. Enigmatic, ultrasmall, uncultivated Archaea

    SciTech Connect

    Baker, Brett J.; Comolli, Luis; Dick, Gregory J.; Hauser, Loren John; Hyatt, Philip Douglas; Dill, Brian; Land, Miriam L; Verberkmoes, Nathan C; Hettich, Robert {Bob} L; Banfield, Jillian F.

    2010-01-01

    Metagenomics has provided access to genomes of as yet uncultivated microorganisms in natural environments, yet there are gaps in our knowledge particularly for Archaea that occur at relatively low abundance and in extreme environments. Ultrasmall cells (<500 nm in diameter) from lineages without cultivated representatives that branch near the crenarchaeal/euryarchaeal divide have been detected in a variety of acidic ecosystems. We reconstructed composite, near-complete 1-Mb genomes for three lineages, referred to as ARMAN (archaeal Richmond Mine acidophilic nanoorganisms), from environmental samples and a biofilm filtrate. Genes of two lineages are among the smallest yet described, enabling a 10% higher coding density than found genomes of the same size, and there are noncontiguous genes. No biological function could be inferred for up to 45% of genes and no more than 63% of the predicted proteins could be assigned to a revised set of archaeal clusters of orthologous groups. Some core metabolic genes are more common in Crenarchaeota than Euryarchaeota, up to 21% of genes have the highest sequence identity to bacterial genes, and 12 belong to clusters of orthologous groups that were previously exclusive to bacteria. A small subset of 3D cryo-electron tomographic reconstructions clearly show penetration of the ARMAN cell wall and cytoplasmic membranes by protuberances extended from cells of the archaeal order Thermoplasmatales. Interspecies interactions, the presence of a unique internal tubular organelle [Comolli, et al. (2009) ISME J 3:159 167], and many genes previously only affiliated with Crenarchaea or Bacteria indicate extensive unique physiology in organisms that branched close to the time that Cren- and Euryarchaeotal lineages diverged.

  17. Enigmatic, ultrasmall, uncultivated Archaea

    SciTech Connect

    Baker, Brett J.; Comolli, Luis; Dick, Gregory J.; Hauser, Loren John; Hyatt, Philip Douglas; Dill, Brian; Land, Miriam L; Verberkmoes, Nathan C; Hettich, Robert {Bob} L; Banfield, Jillian F.

    2010-01-01

    Metagenomics has provided access to genomes of as yet uncultivated microorganisms in natural environments, yet there are gaps in our knowledge-particularly for Archaea-that occur at relatively low abundance and in extreme environments. Ultrasmall cells (<500 nm in diameter) from lineages without cultivated representatives that branch near the crenarchaeal/euryarchaeal divide have been detected in a variety of acidic ecosystems. We reconstructed composite, near-complete similar to 1-Mb genomes for three lineages, referred to as ARMAN (archaeal Richmond Mine acidophilic nanoorganisms), from environmental samples and a biofilm filtrate. Genes of two lineages are among the smallest yet described, enabling a 10% higher coding density than found genomes of the same size, and there are noncontiguous genes. No biological function could be inferred for up to 45% of genes and no more than 63% of the predicted proteins could be assigned to a revised set of archaeal clusters of orthologous groups. Some core metabolic genes are more common in Crenarchaeota than Euryarchaeota, up to 21% of genes have the highest sequence identity to bacterial genes, and 12 belong to clusters of orthologous groups that were previously exclusive to bacteria. A small subset of 3D cryo-electron tomographic reconstructions clearly show penetration of the ARMAN cell wall and cytoplasmic membranes by protuberances extended from cells of the archaeal order Thermoplasmatales. Interspecies interactions, the presence of a unique internal tubular organelle [Comolli, et al. (2009) ISME J 3: 159-167], and many genes previously only affiliated with Crenarchaea or Bacteria indicate extensive unique physiology in organisms that branched close to the time that Cren- and Euryarchaeotal lineages diverged.

  18. A Rhomboid Protease Gene Deletion Affects a Novel Oligosaccharide N-Linked to the S-layer Glycoprotein of Haloferax volcanii*

    PubMed Central

    Parente, Juliana; Casabuono, Adriana; Ferrari, María Celeste; Paggi, Roberto Alejandro; De Castro, Rosana Esther; Couto, Alicia Susana; Giménez, María Inés

    2014-01-01

    Rhomboid proteases occur in all domains of life; however, their physiological role is not completely understood, and nothing is known of the biology of these enzymes in Archaea. One of the two rhomboid homologs of Haloferax volcanii (RhoII) is fused to a zinc finger domain. Chromosomal deletion of rhoII was successful, indicating that this gene is not essential for this organism; however, the mutant strain (MIG1) showed reduced motility and increased sensitivity to novobiocin. Membrane preparations of MIG1 were enriched in two glycoproteins, identified as the S-layer glycoprotein and an ABC transporter component. The H. volcanii S-layer glycoprotein has been extensively used as a model to study haloarchaeal protein N-glycosylation. HPLC analysis of oligosaccharides released from the S-layer glycoprotein after PNGase treatment revealed that MIG1 was enriched in species with lower retention times than those derived from the parent strain. Mass spectrometry analysis showed that the wild type glycoprotein released a novel oligosaccharide species corresponding to GlcNAc-GlcNAc(Hex)2-(SQ-Hex)6 in contrast to the mutant protein, which contained the shorter form GlcNAc2(Hex)2-SQ-Hex-SQ. A glycoproteomics approach of the wild type glycopeptide fraction revealed Asn-732 peptide fragments linked to the sulfoquinovose-containing oligosaccharide. This work describes a novel N-linked oligosaccharide containing a repeating SQ-Hex unit bound to Asn-732 of the H. volcanii S-layer glycoprotein, a position that had not been reported as glycosylated. Furthermore, this study provides the first insight on the biological role of rhomboid proteases in Archaea, suggesting a link between protein glycosylation and this protease family. PMID:24596091

  19. Insights into the evolution of Archaea and eukaryotic protein modifier systems revealed by the genome of a novel archaeal group.

    PubMed

    Nunoura, Takuro; Takaki, Yoshihiro; Kakuta, Jungo; Nishi, Shinro; Sugahara, Junichi; Kazama, Hiromi; Chee, Gab-Joo; Hattori, Masahira; Kanai, Akio; Atomi, Haruyuki; Takai, Ken; Takami, Hideto

    2011-04-01

    The domain Archaea has historically been divided into two phyla, the Crenarchaeota and Euryarchaeota. Although regarded as members of the Crenarchaeota based on small subunit rRNA phylogeny, environmental genomics and efforts for cultivation have recently revealed two novel phyla/divisions in the Archaea; the 'Thaumarchaeota' and 'Korarchaeota'. Here, we show the genome sequence of Candidatus 'Caldiarchaeum subterraneum' that represents an uncultivated crenarchaeotic group. A composite genome was reconstructed from a metagenomic library previously prepared from a microbial mat at a geothermal water stream of a sub-surface gold mine. The genome was found to be clearly distinct from those of the known phyla/divisions, Crenarchaeota (hyperthermophiles), Euryarchaeota, Thaumarchaeota and Korarchaeota. The unique traits suggest that this crenarchaeotic group can be considered as a novel archaeal phylum/division. Moreover, C. subterraneum harbors an ubiquitin-like protein modifier system consisting of Ub, E1, E2 and small Zn RING finger family protein with structural motifs specific to eukaryotic system proteins, a system clearly distinct from the prokaryote-type system recently identified in Haloferax and Mycobacterium. The presence of such a eukaryote-type system is unprecedented in prokaryotes, and indicates that a prototype of the eukaryotic protein modifier system is present in the Archaea. PMID:21169198

  20. Great Salt Lake halophilic microorganisms as models for astrobiology: evidence for desiccation tolerance and ultraviolet irradiation resistance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baxter, Bonnie K.; Eddington, Breanne; Riddle, Misty R.; Webster, Tabitha N.; Avery, Brian J.

    2007-09-01

    Great Salt Lake (GSL) is home to halophiles, salt-tolerant Bacteria and Archaea, which live at 2-5M NaCl. In addition to salt tolerance, GSL halophiles exhibit resistance to both ultraviolet (UV) irradiation and desiccation. First, to understand desiccation resistance, we sought to determine the diversity of GSL halophiles capable of surviving desiccation in either recently formed GSL halite crystals or GSL Artemia (brine shrimp) cysts. From these desiccated environments, surviving microorganisms were cultured and isolated, and genomic DNA was extracted from the individual species for identification by 16S rRNA gene homology. From the surface-sterilized cysts we also extracted DNA of the whole microbial population for non-cultivation techniques. We amplified the archaeal or bacterial 16S rRNA gene from all genomic DNA, cloned the cyst population amplicons, and sequenced. These sequences were compared to gene databases for determination of closest matched species. Interestingly, the isolates from the crystal dissolution are distinct from those previously isolated from GSL brine. The cyst population results reveal species not found in crystals or brine, and may indicate microorganisms that live as endosymbionts of this hypersaline arthropod. Second, we explored UV resistance in a GSL haloarchaea species, "H. salsolis." This strain resists UV irradiation an order of magnitude better than control species, all of which have intact repair systems. To test the hypothesis that halophiles have a photoprotection system, which prevents DNA damage from occurring, we designed an immunoassay to detect thymine dimers following UV irradiation. "H. salsolis" showed remarkable resistance to dimer formation. Evidence for both UV and desiccation resistance in these salt-tolerant GSL halophiles makes them well-suited as models for Astrobiological studies in pursuit of questions about life beyond earth.

  1. Industrial and environmental applications of halophilic microorganisms.

    PubMed

    Oren, Aharon

    2010-01-01

    In comparison with the thermophilic and the alkaliphilic extremophiles, halophilic microorganisms have as yet found relatively few biotechnological applications. Halophiles are involved in centuries-old processes such as the manufacturing of solar salt from seawater and the production of traditional fermented foods. Two biotechnological processes involving halophiles are highly successful: the production of beta-carotene by the green alga Dunaliella and the production of ectoine (1,4,5,6-tetrahydro-2-methyl-4-pyrimidinecarboxylic acid), used as a stabilizer for enzymes and now also applied in cosmetic products, from moderately halophilic bacteria. The potential use of bacteriorhodopsin, the retinal protein proton pump of Halobacterium, in optoelectronic devices and photochemical processes is being explored, and may well lead to commercial applications in the near future. Demand for salt-tolerant enzymes in current manufacturing or related processes is limited. Other possible uses of halophilic microorganisms such as treatment of saline and hypersaline wastewaters, and the production of exopolysaccharides, poly-beta-hydroxyalkanoate bioplastics and biofuel are being investigated, but no large-scale applications have yet been reported. PMID:20662374

  2. Salty sisters: The women of halophiles

    PubMed Central

    Baxter, Bonnie K.; Gunde-Cimerman, Nina; Oren, Aharon

    2014-01-01

    A history of halophile research reveals the commitment of scientists to uncovering the secrets of the limits of life, in particular life in high salt concentration and under extreme osmotic pressure. During the last 40 years, halophile scientists have indeed made important contributions to extremophile research, and prior international halophiles congresses have documented both the historical and the current work. During this period of salty discoveries, female scientists, in general, have grown in number worldwide. But those who worked in the field when there were small numbers of women sometimes saw their important contributions overshadowed by their male counterparts. Recent studies suggest that modern female scientists experience gender bias in matters such as conference invitations and even representation among full professors. In the field of halophilic microbiology, what is the impact of gender bias? How has the participation of women changed over time? What do women uniquely contribute to this field? What are factors that impact current female scientists to a greater degree? This essay emphasizes the “her story” (not “history”) of halophile discovery. PMID:24926287

  3. Phylogenetically Driven Sequencing of Extremely Halophilic Archaea Reveals Strategies for Static and Dynamic Osmo-response

    PubMed Central

    Tritt, Andrew; Larsen, David; Krusor, Megan; Yao, Andrew I.; Wu, Dongying; Madern, Dominique; Eisen, Jonathan A.; Darling, Aaron E.; Facciotti, Marc T.

    2014-01-01

    Organisms across the tree of life use a variety of mechanisms to respond to stress-inducing fluctuations in osmotic conditions. Cellular response mechanisms and phenotypes associated with osmoadaptation also play important roles in bacterial virulence, human health, agricultural production and many other biological systems. To improve understanding of osmoadaptive strategies, we have generated 59 high-quality draft genomes for the haloarchaea (a euryarchaeal clade whose members thrive in hypersaline environments and routinely experience drastic changes in environmental salinity) and analyzed these new genomes in combination with those from 21 previously sequenced haloarchaeal isolates. We propose a generalized model for haloarchaeal management of cytoplasmic osmolarity in response to osmotic shifts, where potassium accumulation and sodium expulsion during osmotic upshock are accomplished via secondary transport using the proton gradient as an energy source, and potassium loss during downshock is via a combination of secondary transport and non-specific ion loss through mechanosensitive channels. We also propose new mechanisms for magnesium and chloride accumulation. We describe the expansion and differentiation of haloarchaeal general transcription factor families, including two novel expansions of the TATA-binding protein family, and discuss their potential for enabling rapid adaptation to environmental fluxes. We challenge a recent high-profile proposal regarding the evolutionary origins of the haloarchaea by showing that inclusion of additional genomes significantly reduces support for a proposed large-scale horizontal gene transfer into the ancestral haloarchaeon from the bacterial domain. The combination of broad (17 genera) and deep (≥5 species in four genera) sampling of a phenotypically unified clade has enabled us to uncover both highly conserved and specialized features of osmoadaptation. Finally, we demonstrate the broad utility of such datasets, for metagenomics, improvements to automated gene annotation and investigations of evolutionary processes. PMID:25393412

  4. Using extremely halophilic bacteria to understand the role of surface charge and surface hydration in protein evolution, folding, and function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoff, Wouter; Deole, Ratnakar; Osu Collaboration

    2013-03-01

    Halophilic Archaea accumulate molar concentrations of KCl in their cytoplasm as an osmoprotectant, and have evolved highly acidic proteomes that only function at high salinity. We examine osmoprotection in the photosynthetic Proteobacteria Halorhodospira halophila. We find that H. halophila has an acidic proteome and accumulates molar concentrations of KCl when grown in high salt media. Upon growth of H. halophila in low salt media, its cytoplasmic K + content matches that of Escherichia coli, revealing an acidic proteome that can function in the absence of high cytoplasmic salt concentrations. These findings necessitate a reassessment of two central aspects of theories for understanding extreme halophiles. We conclude that proteome acidity is not driven by stabilizing interactions between K + ions and acidic side chains, but by the need for maintaining sufficient solvation and hydration of the protein surface at high salinity through strongly hydrated carboxylates. We propose that obligate protein halophilicity is a non-adaptive property resulting from genetic drift in which constructive neutral evolution progressively incorporates weakly stabilizing K + binding sites on an increasingly acidic protein surface.

  5. Salt-Bridge Energetics in Halophilic Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Nayek, Arnab; Sen Gupta, Parth Sarthi; Banerjee, Shyamashree; Mondal, Buddhadev; Bandyopadhyay, Amal K.

    2014-01-01

    Halophilic proteins have greater abundance of acidic over basic and very low bulky hydrophobic residues. Classical electrostatic stabilization was suggested as the key determinant for halophilic adaptation of protein. However, contribution of specific electrostatic interactions (i.e. salt-bridges) to overall stability of halophilic proteins is yet to be understood. To understand this, we use Adaptive-Poison-Boltzmann-Solver Methods along with our home-built automation to workout net as well as associated component energy terms such as desolvation energy, bridge energy and background energy for 275 salt-bridges from 20 extremely halophilic proteins. We then perform extensive statistical analysis on general and energetic attributes on these salt-bridges. On average, 8 salt-bridges per 150 residues protein were observed which is almost twice than earlier report. Overall contributions of salt-bridges are −3.0 kcal mol−1. Majority (78%) of salt-bridges in our dataset are stable and conserved in nature. Although, average contributions of component energy terms are equal, their individual details vary greatly from one another indicating their sensitivity to local micro-environment. Notably, 35% of salt-bridges in our database are buried and stable. Greater desolvation penalty of these buried salt-bridges are counteracted by stable network salt-bridges apart from favorable equal contributions of bridge and background terms. Recruitment of extensive network salt-bridges (46%) with a net contribution of −5.0 kcal mol−1 per salt-bridge, seems to be a halophilic design wherein favorable average contribution of background term (−10 kcal mol−1) exceeds than that of bridge term (−7 kcal mol−1). Interiors of proteins from halophiles are seen to possess relatively higher abundance of charge and polar side chains than that of mesophiles which seems to be satisfied by cooperative network salt-bridges. Overall, our theoretical analyses provide insight into halophilic

  6. Insertion Sequence Diversity in Archaea

    PubMed Central

    Filée, J.; Siguier, P.; Chandler, M.

    2007-01-01

    Insertion sequences (ISs) can constitute an important component of prokaryotic (bacterial and archaeal) genomes. Over 1,500 individual ISs are included at present in the ISfinder database (www-is.biotoul.fr), and these represent only a small portion of those in the available prokaryotic genome sequences and those that are being discovered in ongoing sequencing projects. In spite of this diversity, the transposition mechanisms of only a few of these ubiquitous mobile genetic elements are known, and these are all restricted to those present in bacteria. This review presents an overview of ISs within the archaeal kingdom. We first provide a general historical summary of the known properties and behaviors of archaeal ISs. We then consider how transposition might be regulated in some cases by small antisense RNAs and by termination codon readthrough. This is followed by an extensive analysis of the IS content in the sequenced archaeal genomes present in the public databases as of June 2006, which provides an overview of their distribution among the major archaeal classes and species. We show that the diversity of archaeal ISs is very great and comparable to that of bacteria. We compare archaeal ISs to known bacterial ISs and find that most are clearly members of families first described for bacteria. Several cases of lateral gene transfer between bacteria and archaea are clearly documented, notably for methanogenic archaea. However, several archaeal ISs do not have bacterial equivalents but can be grouped into Archaea-specific groups or families. In addition to ISs, we identify and list nonautonomous IS-derived elements, such as miniature inverted-repeat transposable elements. Finally, we present a possible scenario for the evolutionary history of ISs in the Archaea. PMID:17347521

  7. Complete Biosynthetic Pathway of the C50 Carotenoid Bacterioruberin from Lycopene in the Extremely Halophilic Archaeon Haloarcula japonica

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Ying; Ando, Ai; Miyoko, Nobuhiro; Fukui, Toshiaki; Takaichi, Shinichi; Nakamura, Satoshi

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Haloarcula japonica, an extremely halophilic archaeon that requires high concentrations of NaCl for growth, accumulates the C50 carotenoid bacterioruberin (BR). By homology analysis, a gene cluster, including c0507, c0506, and c0505, was found and predicted to be involved in the synthesis of bacterioruberin. To elucidate the function of the encoded enzymes, we constructed Ha. japonica mutants of these genes and analyzed carotenoids produced by the mutants. Our research showed that c0507, c0506, and c0505 encoded a carotenoid 3,4-desaturase (CrtD), a bifunctional lycopene elongase and 1,2-hydratase (LyeJ), and a C50 carotenoid 2″,3″-hydratase (CruF), respectively. The above three carotenoid biosynthetic enzymes catalyze the reactions that convert lycopene to bacterioruberin in Ha. japonica. This is the first identification of functional CrtD and CruF in archaea and elucidation of the complete biosynthetic pathway of bacterioruberin from lycopene. IMPORTANCE Haloarcula japonica, an extremely halophilic archaeon, accumulates the C50 carotenoid bacterioruberin (BR). In this study, we have identified three BR biosynthetic enzymes and have elucidated their functions. Among them, two enzymes were found in an archaeon for the first time. Our results revealed the biosynthetic pathway responsible for production of BR in Ha. japonica and provide a basis for investigating carotenoid biosynthetic pathways in other extremely halophilic archaea. Elucidation of the carotenoid biosynthetic pathway in Ha. japonica may also prove useful for producing the C50 carotenoid BR efficiently by employing genetically modified haloarchaeal strains. PMID:25712483

  8. Phylogenetic diversity of Archaea in sediment samples from a coastal salt marsh.

    PubMed Central

    Munson, M A; Nedwell, D B; Embley, T M

    1997-01-01

    The Archaea present in salt marsh sediment samples from a tidal creek and from an adjacent area of vegetative marshland, both of which showed active methanogenesis and sulfate reduction, were sampled by using 16S rRNA gene libraries created with Archaea-specific primers. None of the sequences were the same as reference sequences from cultured taxa, although some were closely related to sequences from methanogens previously isolated from marine sediments. A wide range of Euryarchaeota sequences were recovered, but no sequences from Methanococcus, Methanobacterium, or the Crenarchaeota were recovered. Clusters of closely related sequences were common and generally contained sequences from both sites, suggesting that some related organisms were present in both samples. Recovery of sequences closely related to those of methanogens such as Methanococcoides and Methanolobus, which can use substrates other than hydrogen, provides support for published hypotheses that such methanogens are probably important in sulfate-rich sediments and identifies some likely candidates. Sequences closely related to those of methanogens such as Methanoculleus and Methanogenium, which are capable of using hydrogen, were also discovered, in agreement with previous inhibitor and process measurements suggesting that these taxa are present at low levels of activity. More surprisingly, we recovered a variety of sequences closely related to those from different halophilic Archaea and a cluster of divergent sequences specifically related to the marine group II archaeal sequences recently shown by PCR and probing to have a cosmopolitan distribution in marine samples. PMID:9406392

  9. Respiratory quinones in Archaea: phylogenetic distribution and application as biomarkers in the marine environment.

    PubMed

    Elling, Felix J; Becker, Kevin W; Könneke, Martin; Schröder, Jan M; Kellermann, Matthias Y; Thomm, Michael; Hinrichs, Kai-Uwe

    2016-02-01

    The distribution of respiratory quinone electron carriers among cultivated organisms provides clues on both the taxonomy of their producers and the redox processes these are mediating. Our study of the quinone inventories of 25 archaeal species belonging to the phyla Eury-, Cren- and Thaumarchaeota facilitates their use as chemotaxonomic markers for ecologically important archaeal clades. Saturated and monounsaturated menaquinones with six isoprenoid units forming the alkyl chain may serve as chemotaxonomic markers for Thaumarchaeota. Other diagnostic biomarkers are thiophene-bearing quinones for Sulfolobales and methanophenazines as functional quinone analogues of the Methanosarcinales. The ubiquity of saturated menaquinones in the Archaea in comparison to Bacteria suggests that these compounds may represent an ancestral and diagnostic feature of the Archaea. Overlap between quinone compositions of distinct thermophilic and halophilic archaea and bacteria may indicate lateral gene transfer. The biomarker potential of thaumarchaeal quinones was exemplarily demonstrated on a water column profile of the Black Sea. Both, thaumarchaeal quinones and membrane lipids showed similar distributions with maxima at the chemocline. Quinone distributions indicate that Thaumarchaeota dominate respiratory activity at a narrow interval in the chemocline, while they contribute only 9% to the microbial biomass at this depth, as determined by membrane lipid analysis. PMID:26472620

  10. Isolation of carbohydrate-metabolizing, extremely halophilic bacteria.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tomlinson, G. A.; Hochstein, L. I.

    1972-01-01

    Four previously unrecognized strains of extremely halophilic bacteria that utilize carbohydrates have been isolated. Gas production proved an unreliable index of carbohydrate metabolism; therefore, carbohydrate utilization was measured by determining acid formation and sugar disappearance during growth. By these procedures, carbohydrate utilization was readily detected. The results suggest that carbohydrate dissimilation by extremely halophilic bacteria may be more common than previously thought and that the apparent rarity of carbohydrate-metabolizing halophiles may be an artifact of the isolation procedures used.

  11. DNA replication origins in archaea

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Zhenfang; Liu, Jingfang; Yang, Haibo; Xiang, Hua

    2014-01-01

    DNA replication initiation, which starts at specific chromosomal site (known as replication origins), is the key regulatory stage of chromosome replication. Archaea, the third domain of life, use a single or multiple origin(s) to initiate replication of their circular chromosomes. The basic structure of replication origins is conserved among archaea, typically including an AT-rich unwinding region flanked by several conserved repeats (origin recognition box, ORB) that are located adjacent to a replication initiator gene. Both the ORB sequence and the adjacent initiator gene are considerably diverse among different replication origins, while in silico and genetic analyses have indicated the specificity between the initiator genes and their cognate origins. These replicator–initiator pairings are reminiscent of the oriC-dnaA system in bacteria, and a model for the negative regulation of origin activity by a downstream cluster of ORB elements has been recently proposed in haloarchaea. Moreover, comparative genomic analyses have revealed that the mosaics of replicator-initiator pairings in archaeal chromosomes originated from the integration of extrachromosomal elements. This review summarizes the research progress in understanding of archaeal replication origins with particular focus on the utilization, control and evolution of multiple replication origins in haloarchaea. PMID:24808892

  12. Salt-dependent properties of proteins from extremely halophilic bacteria

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lanyi, J. K.

    1974-01-01

    Based on information concerning the interaction of salts and macromolecules the literature of the enzymes of halophilic bacteria and their constituents is examined. Although in halophilic systems the salt requirement of enzyme activity is variable the enzymes investigated show a time-dependent inactivation at lower salt concentrations especially in the absence of salt. The studies described show that in some halophilic systems the effect of salt may be restricted to a small region on the protein molecule. The concept of the hydrophobic bond to consider certain solvent-dependent phenomena is introduced. It is shown that some halophilic enzymes are unable to maintain their structure without the involvement of hydrophobic interactions that are usually not supported by water. A table lists indices of hydrophobicity and polarity for various halophilic and nonhalophilic proteins.

  13. Archaea prevalence in inflamed pulp tissues

    PubMed Central

    Efenberger, Magdalena; Agier, Justyna; Pawłowska, Elżbieta

    2015-01-01

    Archaea have been detected in several ecological niches of the human body such as the large intestine, skin, vagina as well as the oral cavity. At present, archaea are recognized as nonpathogenic microorganisms. However, some data indicate that they may be involved in the etiopathogenesis of several diseases, including intestinal diseases as well as oral diseases: periodontitis, peri-implantitis and endodontitis. In this study, on the basis of 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis, we examined whether archaea might be present in inflamed pulp tissues and contribute to the development of endodontic infection. In comparison, we also determined selected bacterial species associated with endodontitis. We detected archaea in 85% of infected endodontic samples. In addition, Prevotella intermedia, Porphyromonas gingivalis, Tannerella forsythia and Treponema denticola were present in inflamed pulp tissue samples and Treponema denticola occurred with the highest frequency (70%). Further analysis revealed the presence of methanogenic archaea in analyzed samples. Direct sequencing of archaeal 16S rRNA gene PCR products indicated the occurrence of methanogenic archaea in inflamed pulp tissues; phylogenetically most similar were Methanobrevibacter oralis and Methanobrevibacter smithii. Therefore, our results show that methanogenic archaea are present in inflamed pulp tissues and may participate in the development of endodontic infection. PMID:26557034

  14. Organic Solutes in Hyperthermophilic Archaea

    PubMed Central

    Martins, L. O.; Huber, R.; Huber, H.; Stetter, K. O.; Da Costa, M. S.; Santos, H.

    1997-01-01

    We examined the accumulation of organic solutes under optimum growth conditions in 12 species of thermophilic and hyperthermophilic Archaea belonging to the Crenarchaeota and Euryarchaeota. Pyrobaculum aerophilum, Thermoproteus tenax, Thermoplasma acidophilum, and members of the order Sulfolobales accumulated trehalose. Pyrococcus furiosus accumulated di-myo-inositol-1,1(prm1)(3,3(prm1))-phosphate and (beta)-mannosylglycerate, Methanothermus fervidus accumulated cyclic-2,3-bisphosphoglycerate and (beta)-mannosylglycerate, while the only solute detected in Pyrodictium occultum was di-myo-inositol-1,1(prm1)(3,3(prm1))-phosphate. Methanopyrus kandleri accumulated large concentrations of cyclic-2,3-bisphosphoglycerate. On the other hand, Archaeoglobus fulgidus accumulated three phosphorylated solutes; prominent among them was a compound identified as di-glycerol-phosphate. This solute increased in concentration as the salinity of the medium and the growth temperature were raised, suggesting that this compound serves as a general stress solute. Di-myo-inositol-1,1(prm1)(3,3(prm1))-phosphate accumulated at supraoptimal temperature only. The relationship between the accumulation of unusual solutes and high temperatures is also discussed. PMID:16535556

  15. Diversity and seasonal dynamics of airborne Archaea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fröhlich-Nowoisky, J.; Ruzene Nespoli, C.; Pickersgill, D. A.; Galand, P. E.; Müller-Germann, I.; Nunes, T.; Gomes Cardoso, J.; Marta Almeida, S.; Pio, C.; Andreae, M. O.; Conrad, R.; Pöschl, U.; Després, V. R.

    2014-05-01

    Archaea are widespread and abundant in many terrestrial and aquatic environments, accounting for up to ∼10% of the prokaryotes. Compared to Bacteria and other microorganisms, however, very little is known about the abundance, diversity, and dispersal of Archaea in the atmosphere. By DNA analysis targeting the 16S rRNA and amoA genes in samples of air particulate matter collected over one year at a continental sampling site in Germany, we obtained first insights into the seasonal dynamics of airborne Archaea. The detected Archaea were identified as Thaumarchaeota or Euryarchaeota, with soil Thaumarchaeota (group I.1b) being present in all samples. The normalized species richness of Thaumarchaeota correlated positively with relative humidity and negatively with temperature. This together with an increase of bare agricultural soil surfaces may explain the diversity peaks observed in fall and winter. The detected Euryarchaeota were mainly methanogens with a low relative frequency of occurrence. A slight increase in their frequency during spring may be linked to fertilization processes in the surrounding agricultural fields. Comparison with samples from the Cape Verde islands and from other coastal and continental sites indicates that the proportions of Euryarchaeota are enhanced in coastal air, which is consistent with their suggested abundance in marine surface waters. We conclude that air transport may play an important role for the dispersal of Archaea, including ammonia-oxidizing Thaumarchaeota and methanogens. Also, anthropogenic activities might influence the atmospheric abundance and diversity of Archaea.

  16. Halophilic Microorganisms Are Responsible for the Rosy Discolouration of Saline Environments in Three Historical Buildings with Mural Paintings

    PubMed Central

    Ettenauer, Jörg D.; Jurado, Valme; Piñar, Guadalupe; Miller, Ana Z.; Santner, Markus; Saiz-Jimenez, Cesareo; Sterflinger, Katja

    2014-01-01

    A number of mural paintings and building materials from monuments located in central and south Europe are characterized by the presence of an intriguing rosy discolouration phenomenon. Although some similarities were observed among the bacterial and archaeal microbiota detected in these monuments, their origin and nature is still unknown. In order to get a complete overview of this biodeterioration process, we investigated the microbial communities in saline environments causing the rosy discolouration of mural paintings in three Austrian historical buildings using a combination of culture-dependent and -independent techniques as well as microscopic techniques. The bacterial communities were dominated by halophilic members of Actinobacteria, mainly of the genus Rubrobacter. Representatives of the Archaea were also detected with the predominating genera Halobacterium, Halococcus and Halalkalicoccus. Furthermore, halophilic bacterial strains, mainly of the phylum Firmicutes, could be retrieved from two monuments using special culture media. Inoculation of building materials (limestone and gypsum plaster) with selected isolates reproduced the unaesthetic rosy effect and biodeterioration in the laboratory. PMID:25084531

  17. Archaic chaos: intrinsically disordered proteins in Archaea

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Many proteins or their regions known as intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) and intrinsically disordered regions (IDRs) lack unique 3D structure in their native states under physiological conditions yet fulfill key biological functions. Earlier bioinformatics studies showed that IDPs and IDRs are highly abundant in different proteomes and carry out mostly regulatory functions related to molecular recognition and signal transduction. Archaea belong to an intriguing domain of life whose members, being microbes, are characterized by a unique mosaic-like combination of bacterial and eukaryotic properties and include inhabitants of some of the most extreme environments on the planet. With the expansion of the archaea genome data (more than fifty archaea species from five different phyla are known now), and with recent improvements in the accuracy of intrinsic disorder prediction, it is time to re-examine the abundance of IDPs and IDRs in the archaea domain. Results The abundance of IDPs and IDRs in 53 archaea species is analyzed. The amino acid composition profiles of these species are generally quite different from each other. The disordered content is highly species-dependent. Thermoproteales proteomes have 14% of disordered residues, while in Halobacteria, this value increases to 34%. In proteomes of these two phyla, proteins containing long disordered regions account for 12% and 46%, whereas 4% and 26% their proteins are wholly disordered. These three measures of disorder content are linearly correlated with each other at the genome level. There is a weak correlation between the environmental factors (such as salinity, pH and temperature of the habitats) and the abundance of intrinsic disorder in Archaea, with various environmental factors possessing different disorder-promoting strengths. Harsh environmental conditions, especially those combining several hostile factors, clearly favor increased disorder content. Intrinsic disorder is highly abundant

  18. From replication to cultivation: hot news from Haloarchaea.

    PubMed

    Soppa, Jörg

    2005-12-01

    Haloarchaea have developed into model organisms that are utilized to study many biological processes. Examples are the mechanisms of chromosome maintenance, gene expression and its regulation, protein export and degradation, and motility and sensing. In addition to the analysis of model species like Halobacterium salinarum and Haloferax volcanii, natural communities have been characterized. Halophilic Archaea were found in low-salt environments and are thus more widespread than previously thought. PMID:16253545

  19. Insights into the sequence parameters for halophilic adaptation.

    PubMed

    Nath, Abhigyan

    2016-03-01

    The sequence parameters for halophilic adaptation are still not fully understood. To understand the molecular basis of protein hypersaline adaptation, a detailed analysis is carried out, and investigated the likely association of protein sequence attributes to halophilic adaptation. A two-stage strategy is implemented, where in the first stage a supervised machine learning classifier is build, giving an overall accuracy of 86 % on stratified tenfold cross validation and 90 % on blind testing set, which are better than the previously reported results. The second stage consists of statistical analysis of sequence features and possible extraction of halophilic molecular signatures. The results of this study showed that, halophilic proteins are characterized by lower average charge, lower K content, and lower S content. A statistically significant preference/avoidance list of sequence parameters is also reported giving insights into the molecular basis of halophilic adaptation. D, Q, E, H, P, T, V are significantly preferred while N, C, I, K, M, F, S are significantly avoided. Among amino acid physicochemical groups, small, polar, charged, acidic and hydrophilic groups are preferred over other groups. The halophilic proteins also showed a preference for higher average flexibility, higher average polarity and avoidance for higher average positive charge, average bulkiness and average hydrophobicity. Some interesting trends observed in dipeptide counts are also reported. Further a systematic statistical comparison is undertaken for gaining insights into the sequence feature distribution in different residue structural states. The current analysis may facilitate the understanding of the mechanism of halophilic adaptation clearer, which can be further used for rational design of halophilic proteins. PMID:26520112

  20. Extreme Halophiles and Carbon Monoxide: Looking Through Windows at Earth's Past and Towards a Future on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, G.

    2015-12-01

    Carbon monoxide, which is ubiquitous on Earth, is the 2nd most abundant molecule in the universe. Members of the domain Bacteria have long been known to oxidize it, and activities of CO oxidizers in soils have been known for several decades to contribute to tropospheric CO regulation. Nonetheless, the diversity of CO oxidizers and their evolutionary history remain largely unknown. A molybdenum-dependent dehydrogenase (Mo-CODH) couples CO oxidation by most terrestrial and marine bacteria to either O2 or nitrate. Molybdenum dependence, the requirement for O2 and previous phylogenetic inferences have all supported a relatively late evolution for "aerobic" CO oxidation, presumably after the Great Oxidation Event (GOE) about 2.3 Gya. Although conundrums remain, recent discoveries suggest that Mo-CODH might have evolved before the GOE, and prior to the Bacteria-Archaea split. New phylogenetic analyses incorporating sequences from extremely halophilic CO-oxidizing Euryarchaeota isolated from salterns in the Atacama Desert, brines on Hawai`i and from the Bonneville Salt Flat suggest that Mo-CODH was present in an ancestor shared by Bacteria and Archaea. This observation is consistent with results of phylogenetic histories of genes involved in Mo-cofactor synthesis, and findings by others that Mo-nitrogenase was likely active > 3 Gya. Thus, analyses of Mo-dependent CO oxidizers provide a window on the past by raising questions about the availability of Mo and non-O2 electron acceptors. Extremely halophilic CO oxidizers also provide insights relevant for understanding the potential for extraterrestrial life. CO likely occurred at high concentrations in Mars' early atmosphere, and it occurs presently at about 800 ppm. At such high concentrations, CO represents one of the most abundant energy sources available for near-surface regolith. However, use of CO by an extant or transplanted Mars microbiota would require tolerance of low water potentials and high salt concentrations

  1. Diversity and seasonal dynamics of airborne archaea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fröhlich-Nowoisky, J.; Ruzene Nespoli, C.; Pickersgill, D. A.; Galand, P. E.; Müller-Germann, I.; Nunes, T.; Gomes Cardoso, J.; Almeida, S. M.; Pio, C.; Andreae, M. O.; Conrad, R.; Pöschl, U.; Després, V. R.

    2014-11-01

    Archaea are widespread and abundant in many terrestrial and aquatic environments, and are thus outside extreme environments, accounting for up to ~10% of the prokaryotes. Compared to bacteria and other microorganisms, however, very little is known about the abundance, diversity, and dispersal of archaea in the atmosphere. By means of DNA analysis and Sanger sequencing targeting the 16S rRNA (435 sequences) and amoA genes in samples of air particulate matter collected over 1 year at a continental sampling site in Germany, we obtained first insights into the seasonal dynamics of airborne archaea. The detected archaea were identified as Thaumarchaeota or Euryarchaeota, with soil Thaumarchaeota (group I.1b) being present in all samples. The normalized species richness of Thaumarchaeota correlated positively with relative humidity and negatively with temperature. This together with an increase in bare agricultural soil surfaces may explain the diversity peaks observed in fall and winter. The detected Euryarchaeota were mainly predicted methanogens with a low relative frequency of occurrence. A slight increase in their frequency during spring may be linked to fertilization processes in the surrounding agricultural fields. Comparison with samples from the Cape Verde islands (72 sequences) and from other coastal and continental sites indicates that the proportions of Euryarchaeota are enhanced in coastal air, which is consistent with their suggested abundance in marine surface waters. We conclude that air transport may play an important role in the dispersal of archaea, including assumed ammonia-oxidizing Thaumarchaeota and methanogens.

  2. Archaea in the Gulf of Aqaba.

    PubMed

    Ionescu, Danny; Penno, Sigrid; Haimovich, Maya; Rihtman, Branko; Goodwin, Aram; Schwartz, Daniel; Hazanov, Lena; Chernihovsky, Mark; Post, Anton F; Oren, Aharon

    2009-09-01

    Using a polyphasic approach, we examined the presence of Archaea in the Gulf of Aqaba, a warm marine ecosystem, isolated from major ocean currents and subject to pronounced seasonal changes in hydrography. Catalyzed reported deposition FISH analyses showed that Archaea make up to >20% of the prokaryotic community in the Gulf. A spatial separation between the two major phyla of Archaea was observed during summer stratification. Euryarchaeota were found exclusively in the upper 200 m, whereas Crenarchaeota were present in greater numbers in layers below the summer thermocline. 16S rRNA gene-based denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis confirmed this depth partitioning and revealed further diversity of Crenarchaeota and Euryarchaeota populations along depth profiles. Phylogenetic analysis showed pelagic Crenarchaeota and Euryarchaeota to differ from coral-associated Archaea from the Gulf, forming distinct clusters within the Marine Archaea Groups I and II. Endsequencing of fosmid libraries of environmental DNA provided a tentative identification of some members of the archaeal community and their role in the microbial community of the Gulf. Incorporation studies of radiolabeled leucine and bicarbonate in the presence of different inhibitors suggest that the archaeal community participates in autotrophic CO(2) uptake and contributes little to the heterotrophic activity. PMID:19583788

  3. Potential Role of Acetyl-CoA Synthetase (acs) and Malate Dehydrogenase (mae) in the Evolution of the Acetate Switch in Bacteria and Archaea

    PubMed Central

    Barnhart, Elliott P.; McClure, Marcella A.; Johnson, Kiki; Cleveland, Sean; Hunt, Kristopher A.; Fields, Matthew W.

    2015-01-01

    Although many Archaea have AMP-Acs (acetyl-coenzyme A synthetase) and ADP-Acs, the extant methanogenic genus Methanosarcina is the only identified Archaeal genus that can utilize acetate via acetate kinase (Ack) and phosphotransacetylase (Pta). Despite the importance of ack as the potential urkinase in the ASKHA phosphotransferase superfamily, an origin hypothesis does not exist for the acetate kinase in Bacteria, Archaea, or Eukarya. Here we demonstrate that Archaeal AMP-Acs and ADP-Acs contain paralogous ATPase motifs previously identified in Ack, which demonstrate a novel relation between these proteins in Archaea. The identification of ATPase motif conservation and resulting structural features in AMP- and ADP-acetyl-CoA synthetase proteins in this study expand the ASKHA superfamily to include acetyl-CoA synthetase. Additional phylogenetic analysis showed that Pta and MaeB sequences had a common ancestor, and that the Pta lineage within the halophilc archaea was an ancestral lineage. These results suggested that divergence of a duplicated maeB within an ancient halophilic, archaeal lineage formed a putative pta ancestor. These results provide a potential scenario for the establishment of the Ack/Pta pathway and provide novel insight into the evolution of acetate metabolism for all three domains of life. PMID:26235787

  4. Potential Role of Acetyl-CoA Synthetase (acs) and Malate Dehydrogenase (mae) in the Evolution of the Acetate Switch in Bacteria and Archaea

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Barnhart, Elliott P.; McClure, Marcella A.; Johnson, Kiki; Cleveland, Sean; Hunt, Kristopher A.; Fields, Matthew W.

    2015-08-03

    Although many Archaea have AMP-Acs (acetyl-coenzyme A synthetase) and ADP-Acs, the extant methanogenic genus Methanosarcina is the only identified Archaeal genus that can utilize acetate via acetate kinase (Ack) and phosphotransacetylase (Pta). Despite the importance of ack as the potential urkinase in the ASKHA phosphotransferase superfamily, an origin hypothesis does not exist for the acetate kinase in Bacteria, Archaea, or Eukarya. Here we demonstrate that Archaeal AMP-Acs and ADP-Acs contain paralogous ATPase motifs previously identified in Ack, which demonstrate a novel relation between these proteins in Archaea. The identification of ATPase motif conservation and resulting structural features in AMP- andmore » ADP-acetyl-CoA synthetase proteins in this study expand the ASKHA superfamily to include acetyl-CoA synthetase. Additional phylogenetic analysis showed that Pta and MaeB sequences had a common ancestor, and that the Pta lineage within the halophilc archaea was an ancestral lineage. Lastly, these results suggested that divergence of a duplicated maeB within an ancient halophilic, archaeal lineage formed a putative pta ancestor. These results provide a potential scenario for the establishment of the Ack/Pta pathway and provide novel insight into the evolution of acetate metabolism for all three domains of life.« less

  5. Potential Role of Acetyl-CoA Synthetase (acs) and Malate Dehydrogenase (mae) in the Evolution of the Acetate Switch in Bacteria and Archaea

    SciTech Connect

    Barnhart, Elliott P.; McClure, Marcella A.; Johnson, Kiki; Cleveland, Sean; Hunt, Kristopher A.; Fields, Matthew W.

    2015-08-03

    Although many Archaea have AMP-Acs (acetyl-coenzyme A synthetase) and ADP-Acs, the extant methanogenic genus Methanosarcina is the only identified Archaeal genus that can utilize acetate via acetate kinase (Ack) and phosphotransacetylase (Pta). Despite the importance of ack as the potential urkinase in the ASKHA phosphotransferase superfamily, an origin hypothesis does not exist for the acetate kinase in Bacteria, Archaea, or Eukarya. Here we demonstrate that Archaeal AMP-Acs and ADP-Acs contain paralogous ATPase motifs previously identified in Ack, which demonstrate a novel relation between these proteins in Archaea. The identification of ATPase motif conservation and resulting structural features in AMP- and ADP-acetyl-CoA synthetase proteins in this study expand the ASKHA superfamily to include acetyl-CoA synthetase. Additional phylogenetic analysis showed that Pta and MaeB sequences had a common ancestor, and that the Pta lineage within the halophilc archaea was an ancestral lineage. Lastly, these results suggested that divergence of a duplicated maeB within an ancient halophilic, archaeal lineage formed a putative pta ancestor. These results provide a potential scenario for the establishment of the Ack/Pta pathway and provide novel insight into the evolution of acetate metabolism for all three domains of life.

  6. 2009 Archaea: Ecology, Metabolism & Molecular Biology GRC

    SciTech Connect

    Dr. Julie Maupin- Furlow

    2009-07-26

    Archaea, one of three major evolutionary lineages of life, are a fascinating and diverse group of microbes with deep roots overlapping those of eukaryotes. The focus of the 'Archaea: Ecology Metabolism & Molecular Biology' GRC conference expands on a number of emerging topics highlighting new paradigms in archaeal metabolism, genome function and systems biology; information processing; evolution and the tree of life; the ecology and diversity of archaea and their viruses; and industrial applications. The strength of this conference lies in its ability to couple a field with a rich history in high quality research with new scientific findings in an atmosphere of stimulating exchange. This conference remains an excellent opportunity for younger scientists to interact with world experts in this field.

  7. 2011 Archaea: Ecology, Metabolism, & Molecular Biology

    SciTech Connect

    Keneth Stedman

    2011-08-05

    Archaea, one of three major evolutionary lineages of life, are a fascinating and diverse group of microbes with deep roots overlapping those of eukaryotes. The focus of the 'Archaea: Ecology Metabolism & Molecular Biology' GRC conference expands on a number of emerging topics highlighting new paradigms in archaeal metabolism, genome function and systems biology; information processing; evolution and the tree of life; the ecology and diversity of archaea and their viruses. The strength of this conference lies in its ability to couple a field with a rich history in high quality research with new scientific findings in an atmosphere of stimulating exchange. This conference remains an excellent opportunity for younger scientists to interact with world experts in this field.

  8. Functional Encyclopedia of Bacteria and Archaea

    SciTech Connect

    Blow, M. J.; Deutschbauer, A. M.; Hoover, C. A.; Lamson, J.; Lamson, J.; Price, M. N.; Waters, J.; Wetmore, K. M.; Bristow, J.; Arkin, A. P.

    2013-03-20

    Bacteria and Archaea exhibit a huge diversity of metabolic capabilities with fundamental importance in the environment, and potential applications in biotechnology. However, the genetic bases of these capabilities remain unclear due largely to an absence of technologies that link DNA sequence to molecular function. To address this challenge, we are developing a pipeline for high throughput annotation of gene function using mutagenesis, growth assays and DNA sequencing. By applying this pipeline to annotate gene function in 50 diverse microbes we hope to discover thousands of new gene functions and produce a proof of principle `Functional Encyclopedia of Bacteria and Archaea?.

  9. 2007 Archaea: Ecology, Metabolism and Molecular Biology

    SciTech Connect

    Imke Schroeder Nancy Ryan Gray

    2008-09-18

    The Archaea are a fascinating and diverse group of prokaryotic organisms with deep roots overlapping those of eukaryotes. The focus of this GRC conference, 'Archaea: Ecology Metabolism & Molecular Biology', expands on a number of emerging topics highlighting the evolution and composition of microbial communities and novel archaeal species, their impact on the environment, archaeal metabolism, and research that stems from sequence analysis of archaeal genomes. The strength of this conference lies in its ability to couple reputable areas with new scientific topics in an atmosphere of stimulating exchange. This conference remains an excellent opportunity for younger scientists to interact with world experts in this field.

  10. Halophilic microorganisms in deteriorated historic buildings: insights into their characteristics.

    PubMed

    Adamiak, Justyna; Otlewska, Anna; Gutarowska, Beata; Pietrzak, Anna

    2016-01-01

    Historic buildings are constantly being exposed to numerous climatic changes such as damp and rainwater. Water migration into and out of the material's pores can lead to salt precipitation and the so-called efflorescence. The structure of the material may be seriously threatened by salt crystallization. A huge pressure is produced when salt hydrates occupy larger spaces, which leads at the end to cracking, detachment and material loss. Halophilic microorganisms have the ability to adapt to high salinity because of the mechanisms of inorganic salt (KCl or NaCl) accumulation in their cells at concentrations isotonic to the environment, or compatible solutes uptake or synthesis. In this study, we focused our attention on the determination of optimal growth conditions of halophilic microorganisms isolated from historical buildings in terms of salinity, pH and temperature ranges, as well as biochemical properties and antagonistic abilities. Halophilic microorganisms studied in this paper could be categorized as a halotolerant group, as they grow in the absence of NaCl, as well as tolerate higher salt concentrations (Staphylococcus succinus, Virgibacillus halodenitrificans). Halophilic microorganisms have been also observed (Halobacillus styriensis, H. hunanensis, H. naozhouensis, H. litoralis, Marinococcus halophilus and yeast Sterigmatomyces halophilus). With respect to their physiological characteristics, cultivation at a temperature of 25-30°C, pH 6-7, NaCl concentration for halotolerant and halophilic microorganisms, 0-10% and 15-30%, respectively, provides the most convenient conditions. Halophiles described in this study displayed lipolytic, glycolytic and proteolytic activities. Staphylococcus succinus and Marinococcus halophilus showed strong antagonistic potential towards bacteria from the Bacillus genus, while Halobacillus litoralis displayed an inhibiting ability against other halophiles. PMID:26894235

  11. Production and properties of an exopolysaccharide synthesized by the extreme halophilic archaeon Haloterrigena turkmenica.

    PubMed

    Squillaci, Giuseppe; Finamore, Rosario; Diana, Paola; Restaino, Odile Francesca; Schiraldi, Chiara; Arbucci, Salvatore; Ionata, Elena; La Cara, Francesco; Morana, Alessandra

    2016-01-01

    We have isolated a novel exopolysaccharide (EPS) produced by the extreme halophilic archaeon Haloterrigena turkmenica. Some features, remarkable from an industrial point of view, such as emulsifying and antioxidant properties, were investigated. H. turkmenica excreted 20.68 mg of EPS per 100 ml of culture medium when grown in usual medium supplemented with glucose. The microorganism excreted the biopolymer mainly in the middle exponential growth phase and reached the maximal production in the stationary phase. Analyses by anion exchange chromatography and SEC-TDA Viscotek indicated that the EPS was composed of two main fractions of 801.7 and 206.0 kDa. It was a sulfated heteropolysaccharide containing glucose, galactose, glucosamine, galactosamine, and glucuronic acid. Studies performed utilizing the mixture of EPS anionic fractions showed that the biopolymer had emulsifying activity towards vegetable oils comparable or superior to that exhibited by the controls, moderate antioxidant power when tested with 2,2'-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH(·)), and moisture-retention ability higher than hyaluronic acid (HA). The EPS from H. turkmenica is the first exopolysaccharide produced by an archaea to be characterized in terms of properties that can have potential biotechnological applications. PMID:26403921

  12. Increase of salt dependence of halophilic nucleoside diphosphate kinase caused by a single amino acid substitution.

    PubMed

    Ishibashi, Matsujiro; Hayashi, Tomoe; Yoshida, Chiho; Tokunaga, Masao

    2013-07-01

    Nucleoside diphosphate kinase (HsNDK) from an extremely halophilic archaea, Halobacterium salinarum, is composed of a homo hexamer, assembled as a trimer of basic dimeric units. It requires >2 M NaCl for refolding, although it does not require NaCl for stability or enzymatic activity below 30 °C. A HisN111L mutant with an N-terminal extension sequence containing hexa-His tag, in which Asn111 was replaced with Leu, was designed to be less stable between basic dimeric units. This mutant can lose between 6 and 12 hydrogen bonds between basic dimeric units in the hexamer structure. The HisN111L mutant had enhanced salt requirements for enzymatic activity and refolding even though the secondary structure of the HisN111L mutant was confirmed to be similar to the control, HisNDK, in low and high salt solutions using circular dichroism. We reported previously that G114R and D148C mutants, which had enhanced interactions between basic dimeric units, showed facilitated refolding and stabilization in low salt solution. The results of this study help to elucidate the process for engineering industrial enzymes by controlling subunit-subunit interactions through mutations. PMID:23609188

  13. Platinum Recovery from Synthetic Extreme Environments by Halophilic Bacteria.

    PubMed

    Maes, Synthia; Props, Ruben; Fitts, Jeffrey P; Smet, Rebecca De; Vilchez-Vargas, Ramiro; Vital, Marius; Pieper, Dietmar H; Vanhaecke, Frank; Boon, Nico; Hennebel, Tom

    2016-03-01

    Metal recycling based on urban mining needs to be established to tackle the increasing supply risk of critical metals such as platinum. Presently, efficient strategies are missing for the recovery of platinum from diluted industrial process streams, often characterized by extremely low pHs and high salt concentrations. In this research, halophilic mixed cultures were employed for the biological recovery of platinum (Pt). Halophilic bacteria were enriched from Artemia cysts, living in salt lakes, in different salt matrices (sea salt mixture and NH4Cl; 20-210 g L(-1) salts) and at low to neutral pH (pH 3-7). The main taxonomic families present in the halophilic cultures were Halomonadaceae, Bacillaceae, and Idiomarinaceae. The halophilic cultures were able to recover >98% Pt(II) and >97% Pt(IV) at pH 2 within 3-21 h (4-453 mg Ptrecovered h(-1) g(-1) biomass). X-ray absorption spectroscopy confirmed the reduction to Pt(0) and transmission electron microscopy revealed both intra- and extracellular Pt precipitates, with median diameters of 9-30 nm and 11-13 nm, for Pt(II) and Pt(IV), respectively. Flow cytometric membrane integrity staining demonstrated the preservation of cell viability during platinum recovery. This study demonstrates the Pt recovery potential of halophilic mixed cultures in acidic saline conditions. PMID:26854514

  14. Archaea in the intestinal tract of pigs

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Knowledge of Archaea in the intestinal tract of pigs is limited. In order to investigate archaeal community structure, samples were taken from the cecum and proximal colon of finishing pigs (24) fed diets with either corn or solvent extracted corn germ meal (CGM). Corn germ meal feeding began in w...

  15. Glucose inhibits the formation of gas vesicles in Haloferax volcanii transformants.

    PubMed

    Hechler, Torsten; Frech, Miriam; Pfeifer, Felicitas

    2008-01-01

    The effect of glucose on the formation of gas vesicles was investigated in Haloferax mediterranei and Hfx.volcanii transformants containing the mc-gvp gene cluster of Hfx. mediterranei (mc-vac transformants). Increasing amounts of glucose in the medium resulted in a successive decrease in the amount of gas vesicles in both species, with a complete inhibition of their formation at glucose concentrations of > 70 mM in mc-vac transformants, and 100 mM in Hfx. mediterranei. Maltose and sucrose imposed a similar inhibitory effect, whereas xylose, arabinose, lactose, pyruvate and 2-deoxy-glucose had no influence on the gas vesicle formation in mc-vac transformants. The activities of the two mc-vac promoters were strongly reduced in mc-vac transformants grown in the presence of > 50 mM glucose. The gas vesicle overproducing Delta D transformant (lacking the repressing protein GvpD) also showed a glucose-induced lack of gas vesicles, indicating that GvpD is not involved in the repression. The addition of glucose was useful to block gas vesicle formation at a certain stage during growth, and vice versa, gas vesicle synthesis could be induced when a glucose-grown culture was shifted to medium lacking glucose. Both procedures will enable the investigation of defined stages during gas vesicle formation. PMID:18211264

  16. Support vector machine with a Pearson VII function kernel for discriminating halophilic and non-halophilic proteins.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Guangya; Ge, Huihua

    2013-10-01

    Understanding of proteins adaptive to hypersaline environment and identifying them is a challenging task and would help to design stable proteins. Here, we have systematically analyzed the normalized amino acid compositions of 2121 halophilic and 2400 non-halophilic proteins. The results showed that halophilic protein contained more Asp at the expense of Lys, Ile, Cys and Met, fewer small and hydrophobic residues, and showed a large excess of acidic over basic amino acids. Then, we introduce a support vector machine method to discriminate the halophilic and non-halophilic proteins, by using a novel Pearson VII universal function based kernel. In the three validation check methods, it achieved an overall accuracy of 97.7%, 91.7% and 86.9% and outperformed other machine learning algorithms. We also address the influence of protein size on prediction accuracy and found the worse performance for small size proteins might be some significant residues (Cys and Lys) were missing in the proteins. PMID:23764527

  17. Construction of a Specialized Cloning Strain of E. Coli for the Nitrate Reductase Genes of Haloferax Denitrificans

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Emmett

    1999-01-01

    This is the final report on Joint Research Interchange (NCC2-5011) "Construction of a Specialized Cloning Strain of E.. coli for the Nitrate Reductase Genes of Haloferax denitrificans." Originally the award was 11/l/93-10/31/95, but there were no-cost extensions made, because of a year Sabbatical at the Pasteur Institute in Paris and other leaves of 3 months each at the Pasteur Institute, during which work could not be done on this project, which extended the closing date to 10/30/98.

  18. Genome-wide DNA methylation analysis of Haloferax volcanii H26 and identification of DNA methyltransferase related PD-(D/E)XK nuclease family protein HVO_A0006

    PubMed Central

    Ouellette, Matthew; Jackson, Laura; Chimileski, Scott; Papke, R. Thane

    2015-01-01

    Restriction-modification (RM) systems have evolved to protect the cell from invading DNAs and are composed of two enzymes: a DNA methyltransferase and a restriction endonuclease. Although RM systems are present in both archaeal and bacterial genomes, DNA methylation in archaea has not been well defined. In order to characterize the function of RM systems in archaeal species, we have made use of the model haloarchaeon Haloferax volcanii. A genomic DNA methylation analysis of H. volcanii strain H26 was performed using PacBio single molecule real-time (SMRT) sequencing. This analysis was also performed on a strain of H. volcanii in which an annotated DNA methyltransferase gene HVO_A0006 was deleted from the genome. Sequence analysis of H26 revealed two motifs which are modified in the genome: Cm4TAG and GCAm6BN6VTGC. Analysis of the ΔHVO_A0006 strain indicated that it exhibited reduced adenine methylation compared to the parental strain and altered the detected adenine motif. However, protein domain architecture analysis and amino acid alignments revealed that HVO_A0006 is homologous only to the N-terminal endonuclease region of Type IIG RM proteins and contains a PD-(D/E)XK nuclease motif, suggesting that HVO_A0006 is a PD-(D/E)XK nuclease family protein. Further bioinformatic analysis of the HVO_A0006 gene demonstrated that the gene is rare among the Halobacteria. It is surrounded by two transposition genes suggesting that HVO_A0006 is a fragment of a Type IIG RM gene, which has likely been acquired through gene transfer, and affects restriction-modification activity by interacting with another RM system component(s). Here, we present the first genome-wide characterization of DNA methylation in an archaeal species and examine the function of a DNA methyltransferase related gene HVO_A0006. PMID:25904898

  19. The closest relatives of icosahedral viruses of thermophilic bacteria are among viruses and plasmids of the halophilic archaea.

    PubMed

    Jalasvuori, Matti; Jaatinen, Silja T; Laurinavicius, Simonas; Ahola-Iivarinen, Elina; Kalkkinen, Nisse; Bamford, Dennis H; Bamford, Jaana K H

    2009-09-01

    We have sequenced the genome and identified the structural proteins and lipids of the novel membrane-containing, icosahedral virus P23-77 of Thermus thermophilus. P23-77 has an approximately 17-kb circular double-stranded DNA genome, which was annotated to contain 37 putative genes. Virions were subjected to dissociation analysis, and five protein species were shown to associate with the internal viral membrane, while three were constituents of the protein capsid. Analysis of the bacteriophage genome revealed it to be evolutionarily related to another Thermus phage (IN93), archaeal Halobacterium plasmid (pHH205), a genetic element integrated into Haloarcula genome (designated here as IHP for integrated Haloarcula provirus), and the Haloarcula virus SH1. These genetic elements share two major capsid proteins and a putative packaging ATPase. The ATPase is similar with the ATPases found in the PRD1-type viruses, thus providing an evolutionary link to these viruses and furthering our knowledge on the origin of viruses. PMID:19587059

  20. Identification of archaea and some extremophilic bacteria using matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Krader, Paul; Emerson, David

    2004-08-01

    Archaea and a number of groups of environmentally important bacteria, e.g., sulfate-reducing bacteria, anoxygenic phototrophs, and some thermophiles, are difficult to characterize using current methods developed for phenotypically differentiating heterotrophic bacteria. We have evaluated matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight (MALDI-TOF-MS) as a rapid method for identifying different groups of extremophilic prokaryotes using a linear mass spectrometer (Micromass, UK). The instrument is designed to acquire mass-spectral patterns from prokaryotic cell-wall components between masses of 500 and 10,000 Da in a statistically robust manner and create a database that can be used for identification. We have tested 28 archaea (10 genera, 20 spp.) and 42 bacteria (25 genera, 37 spp.) and found that all species yield reproducible, unique mass-spectral profiles. As a whole, the profiles for the archaea had fewer peaks and showed less differentiation compared to the bacteria, perhaps reflecting fundamental differences in cell-wall structure. The halophilic archaea all had consistent patterns that showed little differentiation; however, the software was able to consistently distinguish Halobacterium salinarium, Halococcus dombrowski, and Haloarcula marismortui from one another, although it could not always correctly distinguish four strains of Hb. salinarium from one another. The method was able to reliably identify 10(5) cells of either Albidovulum inexpectatum or Thermococcus litoralis and could detect as low as 10(3) cells. We found that the matrix, alpha-cyano-4-hydroxy-cinnamic acid yielded better spectra for archaea than 5-chloro-2-mercapto-benzothiazole. Overall, the method was rapid, required a minimum of sample processing, and was capable of distinguishing and identifying a very diverse group of prokaryotes. PMID:15042434

  1. Homeoviscous Adaptation of Membranes in Archaea.

    PubMed

    Oger, Philippe M

    2015-01-01

    Because membranes play a central role in regulating fluxes inward and outward from the cells, maintaining the appropriate structure of the membrane is crucial to maintain cellular integrity and functions. Microbes often face contrasted and fluctuating environmental conditions, to which they need to adapt or die. Membrane adaptation is achieved by a modification of the membrane lipid composition, a strategy termed homeoviscous adaptation. Homeoviscous adaptation in archaea involves strategies similar to that observed in bacteria and eucarya, such as the regulation of lipid chain length or saturation levels, as well as strategies specific to archaea, such as the regulation of the number of cycles along the isoprenoid chains or the regulation of the ratio between mono and bipolar lipids. Although not described yet described in hyperthermophilic bacteria, it is possible that these two strategies also apply to these latter organisms. PMID:26174392

  2. Crystal structure of ubiquitin-like small archaeal modifier protein 1 (SAMP1) from Haloferax volcanii.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Young Jee; Jeong, Byung-Cheon; Song, Hyun Kyu

    2011-02-01

    The ubiquitin-like (Ubl) system has been shown to be ubiquitous in all three kingdoms of life following the very recent characterization of ubiquitin-like small archaeal modifier proteins (SAMP1 and 2) from Haloferax volcanii. The ubiquitin (Ub) and Ubl molecules in eukaryotes have been studied extensively and their cellular functions are well established. Biochemical and structural data pertaining to prokaryotic Ubl protein (Pup) continue to be reported. In contrast to eukaryotes and prokaryotes, no structural information on the archaeal Ubl molecule is available. Here we determined the crystal structure of SAMP1 at 1.55Å resolution and generated a model of SAMP2. These were then compared with other Ubl molecules from eukaryotes as well as prokaryotes. The structure of SAMP1 shows a β-grasp fold of Ub, suggesting that the archaeal Ubl molecule is more closely related to eukaryotic Ub and Ubls than to its prokaryotic counterpart. The current structure identifies the location of critical elements such a single lysine residue (Lys4), C-terminal di-glycine motif, hydrophobic patches near leucine 60, and uniquely inserted α-helical segments (α1 and α3) in SAMP1. Based on the structure of SAMP1, several Ub-like features of SAMPs such as poly-SAMPylation and non-covalent interactions have been proposed, which should provide the basis for further investigations concerning the molecular function of archaeal Ubls and the large super-family of β-grasp fold proteins in the archaeal kingdom. PMID:21216237

  3. Enoyl-CoA hydratase mediates polyhydroxyalkanoate mobilization in Haloferax mediterranei

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Guiming; Cai, Shuangfeng; Hou, Jing; Zhao, Dahe; Han, Jing; Zhou, Jian; Xiang, Hua

    2016-01-01

    Although polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) accumulation and mobilization are one of the most general mechanisms for haloarchaea to adapt to the hypersaline environments with changeable carbon sources, the PHA mobilization pathways are still not clear for any haloarchaea. In this study, the functions of five putative (R)-specific enoyl-CoA hydratases (R-ECHs) in Haloferax mediterranei, named PhaJ1 to PhaJ5, respectively, were thoroughly investigated. Through gene deletion and complementation, we demonstrated that only certain of these ECHs had a slight contribution to poly(3-hydroxybutyrate-co-3-hydroxyvalerate) (PHBV) biosynthesis. But significantly, PhaJ1, the only R-ECH that is associated with PHA granules, was shown to be involved in PHA mobilization in this haloarchaeon. PhaJ1 catalyzes the dehydration of (R)-3-hydroxyacyl-CoA, the common product of PHA degradation, to enoyl-CoA, the intermediate of the β-oxidation cycle, thus could link PHA mobilization to β-oxidation pathway in H. mediterranei. This linkage was further indicated from the up-regulation of the key genes of β-oxidation under the PHA mobilization condition, as well as the obvious inhibition of PHA degradation upon inhibition of the β-oxidation pathway. Interestingly, 96% of phaJ-containing haloarchaeal species possess both phaC (encoding PHA synthase) and the full set genes of β-oxidation, implying that the mobilization of carbon storage in PHA through the β-oxidation cycle would be general in haloarchaea. PMID:27052994

  4. The Archaea of a Hypersaline Microbial Mat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robertson, C.; Spear, J. R.; Pace, N. R.

    2006-12-01

    The overarching goal of this work is to describe and understand the organismal composition within the domain Archaea for the microbial ecosystem of a hypersaline microbial mat. Sea salt is crystallized by solar evaporation at North America's largest saltworks, the Exportadora de Sal, in Guerrero Negro, Baja California Sur. Sea water flows through a series of evaporative basins with an increase in salinity until saturation is reached and halite crystallization begins. Several of these ponds are underlined with thick microbial mats. To date, it has not been known what kinds of organisms comprise these complex microbial ecosystems. Here, we report a survey of the stratified microbial communities for the distribution of representatives of Archaea in layers of the mats. This survey uses molecular approaches, based on cloning and sequencing of SSU rRNA genes for phylogenetic analyses, to determine the nature and extent of archaeal diversity that constitute these ecosystems. We compiled an altogether new phylogenetic backbone for the domain Archaea and placed representative sequences from this hypersaline analysis onto that framework. Analyses to date indicate the ubiquitous dominance of uncultured organisms of phylogenetic kinds not generally thought to be associated with hypersaline environments. Collectively, the results indicate that the diversity of life is extensive even in this seemingly inhospitable "extreme" environment.

  5. The effect of moderately halophilic bacteria supernatant on proliferation and apoptosis of cancer cells and mesenchymal stem cells.

    PubMed

    Sarvari, S; Seyedjafari, E; Amoozgar, M A; Bakhshandeh, B

    2015-01-01

    Many drug discoveries and developing of their applications has originated from microbial metabolites. The most efforts in development of new drugs are concerned with anti—cancer agents that cause better treatment results, less side effects, and more economical production. Several anti—tumor drugs have been recently extracted from natural microbial products. Among these various microbial diversity, Marin bacteria and Archaea have been considered as important and efficient organisms to serve as manufacturers of diverse bioactive compounds. Moderately halophilic microorganisms isolated from saline ponds and lakes of Iran show high capability for production of bioactive compounds like enzymes, dyes and anti—cancer agents. In this research, nine moderately halophilic bacteria isolates were screened to evaluate their anti—cancer agent productivity. After five days of culture on suitable mediums, supernatant samples were tested for in vitro anti—proliferative activity against Human Umbilical Vein Endothelial Cells (HUVEC) while same concentrations of supernatants were examined for evaluating of proliferative activity against Adipose—derived Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). Both assessments were carried out by MTT assay and double PI and DAPI staining. GASX17, GBWy6 and GBPX3 isolates just induced HUVEC cell deaths and exhibited anti—proliferative activity while R2S12 not only reduced HUVEC cell proliferation but also enhanced proliferation of MSCs. R2S12 , GASX17, GBWy6 and GBPX3 isolates were characterized biochemically and six hydrophilic components were detected. This research established new bioactive compounds that could be used as an effective treatment in chemotherapy. PMID:26068916

  6. Distribution of compatible solutes in the halophilic methanogenic archaebacteria

    SciTech Connect

    Meichin Lai; Sowers, K.R.; Gunsalus, R.P. ); Robertson, D.E.; Roberts, M.F. )

    1991-09-01

    Accumulation of compatible solutes, by uptake or de novo synthesis, enables bacteria to reduce the difference between osmotic potentials of the cell cytoplasm and the extracellular environment. To examine this process in the halophilic and halotolerant methanogenic archaebacteria, 14 strains were tested for the accumulation of compatible solutes in response to growth in various extracellular concentrations of NaCl. In external NaCl concentrations of 0.7 to 3.4 M, the halophilic methanogens accumulated K{sup +} ion and low-molecular-weight organic compounds. {beta}-Glutamate was detected in two halotolerant strains that grew below 1.5 M NaCl. Two unusual {beta}-amino acids, N{sub {var epsilon}}-acetyl-{beta}-lysine and {beta}-glutamine (3-aminoglutaramic acid), as well as L-{alpha}-glutamate were compatible solutes among all of these strains. De novo synthesis of glycine betaine was also detected in several strains of moderately and extremely halophilic methanogens. The zwitterionic compounds ({beta}-glutamine, N{sub {var epsilon}}-acetyl-{beta}-lysine,a nd glycine betaine) and potassium were the predominant compatible solutes among the moderately and extremely halophilic methanogens. This is the first report of {beta}-glutamine as a compatible solute and de novo biosynthesis of glycine betaine in the methanogenic archaebacteria.

  7. Distribution of compatible solutes in the halophilic methanogenic archaebacteria.

    PubMed Central

    Lai, M C; Sowers, K R; Robertson, D E; Roberts, M F; Gunsalus, R P

    1991-01-01

    Accumulation of compatible solutes, by uptake or de novo synthesis, enables bacteria to reduce the difference between osmotic potentials of the cell cytoplasm and the extracellular environment. To examine this process in the halophilic and halotolerant methanogenic archaebacteria, 14 strains were tested for the accumulation of compatible solutes in response to growth in various extracellular concentrations of NaCl. In external NaCl concentrations of 0.7 to 3.4 M, the halophilic methanogens accumulated K+ ion and low-molecular-weight organic compounds. beta-Glutamate was detected in two halotolerant strains that grew below 1.5 M NaCl. Two unusual beta-amino acids, N epsilon-acetyl-beta-lysine and beta-glutamine (3-aminoglutaramic acid), as well as L-alpha-glutamate were compatible solutes among all of these strains. De novo synthesis of glycine betaine was also detected in several strains of moderately and extremely halophilic methanogens. The zwitterionic compounds (beta-glutamine, N epsilon-acetyl-beta-lysine, and glycine betaine) and potassium were the predominant compatible solutes among the moderately and extremely halophilic methanogens. This is the first report of beta-glutamine as a compatible solute and de novo biosynthesis of glycine betaine in the methanogenic archaebacteria. PMID:1909318

  8. Workshop on Viability of Halophilic Bacteria in Salt Deposits

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1997-01-01

    The significance of finding viable extreme halophiles in halites associated with Permian-aged sedimentary deposits is considered. Issues related to the microbiology and geochemistry of the halite environment are addressed. Recommendations that related the significance of this phenomenon to NASA's interest in planetary exploration and the early evolution of life are provided.

  9. Archaea in Arctic Thermokarst Lake Sediments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matheus Carnevali, P. B.; Rohrssen, M.; Dodsworth, J. A.; Kuhn, E.; Williams, M.; Adams, H. E.; Berisford, D. F.; Hand, K. P.; Priscu, J. C.; Walter Anthony, K.; Love, G. D.; Hedlund, B. P.; Murray, A. E.

    2011-12-01

    Thermokarst lakes in the Northern Slope of Alaska are known to emit ebullient methane (CH4), some of which is of biogenic origin. Thawing of permafrost in the margins and bottom of these lakes, as a result of climate change, releases sources of carbon that could be used by methanogenic Archaea. However, the composition of Archaea inhabiting these lakes is not known. We have chosen a subset of Thermokarst lakes near Barrow Alaska to determine if there are methanogenic and methane oxidizing Archaea in these lake sediments. To describe the diversity of the archaeal community in the sediments we profiled the variable 3 (v3) region of the 16S rRNA gene of Archaea. The v3 profiles indicated surprisingly high levels of diversity, with 20 to 36 bands in the 10 sample horizons over the upper 100 cm of sediments surveyed in four lakes, at two times of the year. One of v3 rRNA gene bands was common to all lakes, and most phylotypes were grouped by depth (1-40 cm or 41-105 cm) within a lake. Likewise, cluster analysis indicated partitioning of archaeal communities between lakes. To specifically detect methanogens and anaerobic methanotrophs (ANME) in the sediments, DNA was surveyed by PCR to detect the methyl coenzyme M reductase (mcrA) gene, which is specific to the pathways of methanogenesis and anaerobic methane oxidation (AMO). An array of methanogen enrichment cultures was also set up. The expected 464-491 bp amplification product predicted for the mcrA gene was detected in all sediment samples. Assays of enrichment cultures incubated at 2 and 10 °C with substrates used in the main pathways for methanogenesis have produced positive growth and CH4 production results. Most cultures produced CH4 from carbon dioxide (CO2) reduction with hydrogen (H2), although methanol and acetate were also utilized as methanogenic substrates by a few cultures. From the experiments conducted to date we conclude that there is a great diversity of Archaea inhabiting these Thermokarst lakes

  10. Euryhaline Halophilic Microorganisms From the Suiyo Seamount Hydrothermal Vents.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Okamoto, T.; Kimura, H.; Maruyama, A.; Naganuma, T.

    2002-12-01

    The euryhaline halophilic microorganisms grow in a wide salinity range from <3% NaCl (seawater equivalent) to >15% NaCl or to even saturation (about 30% NaCl). A number of euryhaline halophiles have been found in a wide range of habitats from oceanic and terrestrial regimes, from deep-sea vents and seeps, and from Antarctic sea ice and terrains. We have isolated the euryhaline strains independently from a Mid-Atlantic Ridge vent fluids and Antarctic terrains are closely related species of the genus Halomonas. Some euryhaline halophiles maintain intracellular osmotic balance by controlling the concentration of compatible solute such as ectoine. This compatible solute not only stabilizes the proteins from denaturation caused by high salt concentration but also serves as a protectant against stresses such as heating, freezing and drying. The sub-seafloor structure of a hydrothermal vent is highly complicated with mosaic heterogeneity of physicochemical parameters such as temperature and salinity. This premise led us to the hypothesis that some euryhaline halophiles including Halomonas species well adapt to a wide salinity-ranged habitat in the sub-vent. To test this hypothesis, isolation and characterization of euryhaline halophiles from the Suiyo Seamount hydrothermal vents were conducted the drill-cored rock samples from the sites APSK-02, 03, and 07 and the filter-trapped fluid particle samples from the sites APSK-01 and 05 were used. For initial cultivation, a heterotrophic bacterial medium of 15% NaCl was used. The samples was added to the medium and incubated under both aerobic and anaerobic conditions at room temperature. A total of 5 euryhaline halophilic strains were obtained and phylogenetically characterized: two strains (both related to Marinobacter) from APSK-02 core section 2; one strain (related to H. meridiana) from APSK-07 core section 3; and two strains (related to H. meridiana and H. variabilis) from APSK-01 trapped particles. In addition, some

  11. Use of the DiversiLab repetitive sequence-based PCR system for genotyping and identification of Archaea.

    PubMed

    Cleland, David; Krader, Paul; Emerson, David

    2008-05-01

    Repetitive elements are short stretches of DNA that are randomly distributed throughout the chromosomes of prokaryotes. The use of PCR primers to amplify intervening sequences of DNA between specific repetitive elements in Bacteria has become a standard method for rapidly genotyping bacterial strains and providing good resolution between multiple strains within a single species. Rapid, standardized methods for high resolution genotyping of Archaea are not widely available. We evaluated the DiversiLab system from Bacterial Barcodes that utilizes a kit-based repetitive sequence-based (rep-PCR) method that has been optimized for genotyping DNA was extracted from the source organisms using either a standard chemical DNA extraction kit or Whatman FTA paper. Rep-PCR was performed using an archaeal primer set and, the products were run on an Agilent, Lab-on-a-Chip DNA analyzer. Results were analyzed and compared using DiversiLab web-based software from Bacterial Barcodes. Seventy-nine strains representing 27 genera of Crenarchaeota and Euryarchaeota were analyzed. All the organisms could be successfully genotyped and the results were reproducible. We could not detect differences in rep-PCR profiles between DNA extracted using the chemical extraction kit and FTA paper. Thus far, 14 genera and 32 species of methanogens have been analyzed, and all yielded unique genotypes. For halophiles, 11 genera and 28 different species were analyzed, and all yielded unique genotypes. A comparison of 7 different strains of Halobacterium salinarium demonstrated that 6 of the 7 strains had a unique genotype. A comparison of 4 strains of Methanosarcina mazei indicated that each strain produced a unique genotype. There was little systematic inference that could be made from dendrograms comparing different strains, species, and genera of Archaea based on UPGMA cluster analysis. Based on these results, rep-PCR was a useful tool for the genotyping and strain identification of Archaea. PMID

  12. Halophilic Bacteria as a Source of Novel Hydrolytic Enzymes

    PubMed Central

    de Lourdes Moreno, María; Pérez, Dolores; García, María Teresa; Mellado, Encarnación

    2013-01-01

    Hydrolases constitute a class of enzymes widely distributed in nature from bacteria to higher eukaryotes. The halotolerance of many enzymes derived from halophilic bacteria can be exploited wherever enzymatic transformations are required to function under physical and chemical conditions, such as in the presence of organic solvents and extremes in temperature and salt content. In recent years, different screening programs have been performed in saline habitats in order to isolate and characterize novel enzymatic activities with different properties to those of conventional enzymes. Several halophilic hydrolases have been described, including amylases, lipases and proteases, and then used for biotechnological applications. Moreover, the discovery of biopolymer-degrading enzymes offers a new solution for the treatment of oilfield waste, where high temperature and salinity are typically found, while providing valuable information about heterotrophic processes in saline environments. In this work, we describe the results obtained in different screening programs specially focused on the diversity of halophiles showing hydrolytic activities in saline and hypersaline habitats, including the description of enzymes with special biochemical properties. The intracellular lipolytic enzyme LipBL, produced by the moderately halophilic bacterium Marinobacter lipolyticus, showed advantages over other lipases, being an enzyme active over a wide range of pH values and temperatures. The immobilized LipBL derivatives obtained and tested in regio- and enantioselective reactions, showed an excellent behavior in the production of free polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). On the other hand, the extremely halophilic bacterium, Salicola marasensis sp. IC10 showing lipase and protease activities, was studied for its ability to produce promising enzymes in terms of its resistance to temperature and salinity. PMID:25371331

  13. Susceptibility of archaea to antimicrobial agents: applications to clinical microbiology.

    PubMed

    Khelaifia, S; Drancourt, M

    2012-09-01

    We herein review the state of knowledge regarding the in vitro and in vivo susceptibility of archaea to antimicrobial agents, including some new molecules. Indeed, some archaea colonizing the human microbiota have been implicated in diseases such as periodontopathy. Archaea are characterized by their broad-spectrum resistance to antimicrobial agents. In particular, their cell wall lacks peptidoglycan, making them resistant to antimicrobial agents interfering with peptidoglycan biosynthesis. Archaea are, however, susceptible to the protein synthesis inhibitor fusidic acid and imidazole derivatives. Also, squalamine, an antimicrobial agent acting on the cell wall, proved effective against human methanogenic archaea. In vitro susceptibility data could be used to design protocols for the decontamination of complex microbiota and the selective isolation of archaea in anaerobic culture. PMID:22748132

  14. Stress genes and proteins in the archaea.

    PubMed

    Macario, A J; Lange, M; Ahring, B K; Conway de Macario, E

    1999-12-01

    The field covered in this review is new; the first sequence of a gene encoding the molecular chaperone Hsp70 and the first description of a chaperonin in the archaea were reported in 1991. These findings boosted research in other areas beyond the archaea that were directly relevant to bacteria and eukaryotes, for example, stress gene regulation, the structure-function relationship of the chaperonin complex, protein-based molecular phylogeny of organisms and eukaryotic-cell organelles, molecular biology and biochemistry of life in extreme environments, and stress tolerance at the cellular and molecular levels. In the last 8 years, archaeal stress genes and proteins belonging to the families Hsp70, Hsp60 (chaperonins), Hsp40(DnaJ), and small heat-shock proteins (sHsp) have been studied. The hsp70(dnaK), hsp40(dnaJ), and grpE genes (the chaperone machine) have been sequenced in seven, four, and two species, respectively, but their expression has been examined in detail only in the mesophilic methanogen Methanosarcina mazei S-6. The proteins possess markers typical of bacterial homologs but none of the signatures distinctive of eukaryotes. In contrast, gene expression and transcription initiation signals and factors are of the eucaryal type, which suggests a hybrid archaeal-bacterial complexion for the Hsp70 system. Another remarkable feature is that several archaeal species in different phylogenetic branches do not have the gene hsp70(dnaK), an evolutionary puzzle that raises the important question of what replaces the product of this gene, Hsp70(DnaK), in protein biogenesis and refolding and for stress resistance. Although archaea are prokaryotes like bacteria, their Hsp60 (chaperonin) family is of type (group) II, similar to that of the eukaryotic cytosol; however, unlike the latter, which has several different members, the archaeal chaperonin system usually includes only two (in some species one and in others possibly three) related subunits of approximately 60 k

  15. Stress Genes and Proteins in the Archaea

    PubMed Central

    Macario, Alberto J. L.; Lange, Marianne; Ahring, Birgitte K.; De Macario, Everly Conway

    1999-01-01

    The field covered in this review is new; the first sequence of a gene encoding the molecular chaperone Hsp70 and the first description of a chaperonin in the archaea were reported in 1991. These findings boosted research in other areas beyond the archaea that were directly relevant to bacteria and eukaryotes, for example, stress gene regulation, the structure-function relationship of the chaperonin complex, protein-based molecular phylogeny of organisms and eukaryotic-cell organelles, molecular biology and biochemistry of life in extreme environments, and stress tolerance at the cellular and molecular levels. In the last 8 years, archaeal stress genes and proteins belonging to the families Hsp70, Hsp60 (chaperonins), Hsp40(DnaJ), and small heat-shock proteins (sHsp) have been studied. The hsp70(dnaK), hsp40(dnaJ), and grpE genes (the chaperone machine) have been sequenced in seven, four, and two species, respectively, but their expression has been examined in detail only in the mesophilic methanogen Methanosarcina mazei S-6. The proteins possess markers typical of bacterial homologs but none of the signatures distinctive of eukaryotes. In contrast, gene expression and transcription initiation signals and factors are of the eucaryal type, which suggests a hybrid archaeal-bacterial complexion for the Hsp70 system. Another remarkable feature is that several archaeal species in different phylogenetic branches do not have the gene hsp70(dnaK), an evolutionary puzzle that raises the important question of what replaces the product of this gene, Hsp70(DnaK), in protein biogenesis and refolding and for stress resistance. Although archaea are prokaryotes like bacteria, their Hsp60 (chaperonin) family is of type (group) II, similar to that of the eukaryotic cytosol; however, unlike the latter, which has several different members, the archaeal chaperonin system usually includes only two (in some species one and in others possibly three) related subunits of ∼60 kDa. These

  16. Investigating the Effects of Simulated Martian Ultraviolet Radiation on Halococcus dombrowskii and Other Extremely Halophilic Archaebacteria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fendrihan, Sergiu; Bérces, Attila; Lammer, Helmut; Musso, Maurizio; Rontó, György; Polacsek, Tatjana K.; Holzinger, Anita; Kolb, Christoph; Stan-Lotter, Helga

    2009-02-01

    The isolation of viable extremely halophilic archaea from 250-million-year-old rock salt suggests the possibility of their long-term survival under desiccation. Since halite has been found on Mars and in meteorites, haloarchaeal survival of martian surface conditions is being explored. Halococcus dombrowskii H4 DSM 14522T was exposed to UV doses over a wavelength range of 200-400 nm to simulate martian UV flux. Cells embedded in a thin layer of laboratory-grown halite were found to accumulate preferentially within fluid inclusions. Survival was assessed by staining with the LIVE/DEAD kit dyes, determining colony-forming units, and using growth tests. Halite-embedded cells showed no loss of viability after exposure to about 21 kJ/m2, and they resumed growth in liquid medium with lag phases of 12 days or more after exposure up to 148 kJ/m2. The estimated D37 (dose of 37% survival) for Hcc. dombrowskii was ≥ 400 kJ/m2. However, exposure of cells to UV flux while in liquid culture reduced D37 by 2 orders of magnitude (to about 1 kJ/m2); similar results were obtained with Halobacterium salinarum NRC-1 and Haloarcula japonica. The absorption of incoming light of shorter wavelength by color centers resulting from defects in the halite crystal structure likely contributed to these results. Under natural conditions, haloarchaeal cells become embedded in salt upon evaporation; therefore, dispersal of potential microscopic life within small crystals, perhaps in dust, on the surface of Mars could resist damage by UV radiation.

  17. Development of New Modular Genetic Tools for Engineering the Halophilic Archaeon Halobacterium salinarum

    PubMed Central

    Silva-Rocha, Rafael; Pontelli, Marjorie Cornejo; Furtado, Gilvan Pessoa; Zaramela, Livia Soares; Koide, Tie

    2015-01-01

    Our ability to genetically manipulate living organisms is usually constrained by the efficiency of the genetic tools available for the system of interest. In this report, we present the design, construction and characterization of a set of four new modular vectors, the pHsal series, for engineering Halobacterium salinarum, a model halophilic archaeon widely used in systems biology studies. The pHsal shuttle vectors are organized in four modules: (i) the E. coli’s specific part, containing a ColE1 origin of replication and an ampicillin resistance marker, (ii) the resistance marker and (iii) the replication origin, which are specific to H. salinarum and (iv) the cargo, which will carry a sequence of interest cloned in a multiple cloning site, flanked by universal M13 primers. Each module was constructed using only minimal functional elements that were sequence edited to eliminate redundant restriction sites useful for cloning. This optimization process allowed the construction of vectors with reduced sizes compared to currently available platforms and expanded multiple cloning sites. Additionally, the strong constitutive promoter of the fer2 gene was sequence optimized and incorporated into the platform to allow high-level expression of heterologous genes in H. salinarum. The system also includes a new minimal suicide vector for the generation of knockouts and/or the incorporation of chromosomal tags, as well as a vector for promoter probing using a GFP gene as reporter. This new set of optimized vectors should strongly facilitate the engineering of H. salinarum and similar strategies could be implemented for other archaea. PMID:26061363

  18. Halorhabdus rudnickae sp. nov., a halophilic archaeon isolated from a salt mine borehole in Poland.

    PubMed

    Albuquerque, Luciana; Kowalewicz-Kulbat, Magdalena; Drzewiecka, Dominika; Stączek, Paweł; d'Auria, Giuseppe; Rosselló-Móra, Ramon; da Costa, Milton S

    2016-03-01

    Two halophilic archaea, designated strains WSM-64(T) and WSM-66, were isolated from a sample taken from a borehole in the currently unexploited Barycz mining area belonging to the "Wieliczka" Salt Mine Company, in Poland. Strains are red pigmented and form non-motile cocci that stain Gram-negative. Strains WSM-64(T) and WSM-66 showed optimum growth at 40°C, in 20% NaCl and at pH 6.5-7.5. The strains were facultative anaerobes. The major polar lipids of the two strains were phosphatidylglycerol (PG2), phosphatidylglycerol phosphate methyl ester (PGP-Me) and sulfated diglycosyl diether (S-DGD). Menaquinone MK-8 was the major respiratory quinone. The DNA G+C content of strain WSM-64(T) was 61.2mol% by HPLC method; 61.0mol% by genome sequencing. Analysis of the almost complete 16S rRNA gene sequence indicated that the strains WSM-64(T) and WSM-66 (99.7% identity) represented a member of the genus Halorhabdus in the family Halobacteriaceae. Both strains formed a distinct cluster and were most closely related to Halorhabdus tiamatea SARL4B(T) and Halorhabdus utahensis AX-2(T) (DSM 12940(T)) (95.4% and 95.6%, respectively). ANI values of WSM-64(T) with the closest relative type strains were <78.5%. Based on 16S rRNA gene sequence and whole genome analyses, physiological and biochemical characteristics we describe a new species represented by strain WSM-64(T) (=DSM 29498(T) =CECT 8673(T)) for which we propose the name Halorhabdus rudnickae sp. nov. PMID:26749115

  19. Halorubrum halodurans sp. nov., an extremely halophilic archaeon isolated from a hypersaline lake.

    PubMed

    Corral, Paulina; de la Haba, Rafael R; Sánchez-Porro, Cristina; Ali Amoozegar, Mohammad; Thane Papke, R; Ventosa, Antonio

    2016-01-01

    Two extremely halophilic archaea, strains Cb34T and C170, belonging to the genus Halorubrum, were isolated from the brine of the hypersaline lake Aran-Bidgol in Iran. Cells of the two strains were motile, pleomorphic rods, stained Gram-variable and produced red-pigmented colonies. Strains Cb34T and C170 required 25 % (w/v) salts, pH 7.0 and 37 °C for optimal growth under aerobic conditions; 0.3 M Mg2+ was required. Cells of both isolates were lysed in distilled water and hypotonic treatment with < 10 % NaCl provoked cell lysis. Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA gene sequence similarities showed that these two strains were closely related to Halorubrum cibi B31T (98.8 %) and other members of the genus Halorubrum. In addition, studies based on the rpoB' gene revealed that strains Cb34T and C170 are placed among the species of Halorubrum and are closely related to Halorubrum cibi B31T, with rpoB' gene sequence similarity less than or equal to 95.7 %. The polar lipid patterns of both strains consisted of phosphatidylglycerol, phosphatidylglycerol phosphate methyl ester, phosphatidylglycerol sulfate and sulfated mannosyl glucosyl diether. The DNA G+C content was 62.1-62.4 mol%. DNA-DNA hybridization studies confirmed that strains Cb34T and C170 constitute a distinct species. Data obtained in this study show that the two strains represent a novel species, for which the name Halorubrum halodurans sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is Cb34T ( = CECT 8745T = IBRC-M 10233T). PMID:26537912

  20. Investigating the Effects of Simulated Martian Ultraviolet Radiation on Halococcus dombrowskii and Other Extremely Halophilic Archaebacteria

    PubMed Central

    Fendrihan, Sergiu; Bérces, Attila; Lammer, Helmut; Musso, Maurizio; Rontó, György; Polacsek, Tatjana K.; Holzinger, Anita; Kolb, Christoph; Stan-Lotter, Helga

    2011-01-01

    The isolation of viable extremely halophilic archaea from 250-million-year-old rock salt suggests the possibility of their long-term survival under desiccation. Since halite has been found on Mars and in meteorites, haloarchaeal survival of martian surface conditions is being explored. Halococcus dombrowskii H4 DSM 14522T was exposed to UV doses over a wavelength range of 200–400 nm to simulate martian UV flux. Cells embedded in a thin layer of laboratory-grown halite were found to accumulate preferentially within fluid inclusions. Survival was assessed by staining with the LIVE/DEAD kit dyes, determining colony-forming units, and using growth tests. Halite-embedded cells showed no loss of viability after exposure to about 21 kJ/m2, and they resumed growth in liquid medium with lag phases of 12 days or more after exposure up to 148 kJ/m2. The estimated D37 (dose of 37 % survival) for Hcc. dombrowskii was ≥ 400 kJ/m2. However, exposure of cells to UV flux while in liquid culture reduced D37 by 2 orders of magnitude (to about 1 kJ/m2); similar results were obtained with Halobacterium salinarum NRC-1 and Haloarcula japonica. The absorption of incoming light of shorter wavelength by color centers resulting from defects in the halite crystal structure likely contributed to these results. Under natural conditions, haloarchaeal cells become embedded in salt upon evaporation; therefore, dispersal of potential microscopic life within small crystals, perhaps in dust, on the surface of Mars could resist damage by UV radiation. PMID:19215203

  1. Are There Rab GTPases in Archaea?

    PubMed Central

    Surkont, Jaroslaw; Pereira-Leal, Jose B.

    2016-01-01

    A complex endomembrane system is one of the hallmarks of Eukaryotes. Vesicle trafficking between compartments is controlled by a diverse protein repertoire, including Rab GTPases. These small GTP-binding proteins contribute identity and specificity to the system, and by working as molecular switches, trigger multiple events in vesicle budding, transport, and fusion. A diverse collection of Rab GTPases already existed in the ancestral Eukaryote, yet, it is unclear how such elaborate repertoire emerged. A novel archaeal phylum, the Lokiarchaeota, revealed that several eukaryotic-like protein systems, including small GTPases, are present in Archaea. Here, we test the hypothesis that the Rab family of small GTPases predates the origin of Eukaryotes. Our bioinformatic pipeline detected multiple putative Rab-like proteins in several archaeal species. Our analyses revealed the presence and strict conservation of sequence features that distinguish eukaryotic Rabs from other small GTPases (Rab family motifs), mapping to the same regions in the structure as in eukaryotic Rabs. These mediate Rab-specific interactions with regulators of the REP/GDI (Rab Escort Protein/GDP dissociation Inhibitor) family. Sensitive structure-based methods further revealed the existence of REP/GDI-like genes in Archaea, involved in isoprenyl metabolism. Our analysis supports a scenario where Rabs differentiated into an independent family in Archaea, interacting with proteins involved in membrane biogenesis. These results further support the archaeal nature of the eukaryotic ancestor and provide a new insight into the intermediate stages and the evolutionary path toward the complex membrane-associated signaling circuits that characterize the Ras superfamily of small GTPases, and specifically Rab proteins. PMID:27034425

  2. Are There Rab GTPases in Archaea?

    PubMed

    Surkont, Jaroslaw; Pereira-Leal, Jose B

    2016-07-01

    A complex endomembrane system is one of the hallmarks of Eukaryotes. Vesicle trafficking between compartments is controlled by a diverse protein repertoire, including Rab GTPases. These small GTP-binding proteins contribute identity and specificity to the system, and by working as molecular switches, trigger multiple events in vesicle budding, transport, and fusion. A diverse collection of Rab GTPases already existed in the ancestral Eukaryote, yet, it is unclear how such elaborate repertoire emerged. A novel archaeal phylum, the Lokiarchaeota, revealed that several eukaryotic-like protein systems, including small GTPases, are present in Archaea. Here, we test the hypothesis that the Rab family of small GTPases predates the origin of Eukaryotes. Our bioinformatic pipeline detected multiple putative Rab-like proteins in several archaeal species. Our analyses revealed the presence and strict conservation of sequence features that distinguish eukaryotic Rabs from other small GTPases (Rab family motifs), mapping to the same regions in the structure as in eukaryotic Rabs. These mediate Rab-specific interactions with regulators of the REP/GDI (Rab Escort Protein/GDP dissociation Inhibitor) family. Sensitive structure-based methods further revealed the existence of REP/GDI-like genes in Archaea, involved in isoprenyl metabolism. Our analysis supports a scenario where Rabs differentiated into an independent family in Archaea, interacting with proteins involved in membrane biogenesis. These results further support the archaeal nature of the eukaryotic ancestor and provide a new insight into the intermediate stages and the evolutionary path toward the complex membrane-associated signaling circuits that characterize the Ras superfamily of small GTPases, and specifically Rab proteins. PMID:27034425

  3. Polyamines in Eukaryotes, Bacteria, and Archaea.

    PubMed

    Michael, Anthony J

    2016-07-15

    Polyamines are primordial polycations found in most cells and perform different functions in different organisms. Although polyamines are mainly known for their essential roles in cell growth and proliferation, their functions range from a critical role in cellular translation in eukaryotes and archaea, to bacterial biofilm formation and specialized roles in natural product biosynthesis. At first glance, the diversity of polyamine structures in different organisms appears chaotic; however, biosynthetic flexibility and evolutionary and ecological processes largely explain this heterogeneity. In this review, I discuss the biosynthetic, evolutionary, and physiological processes that constrain or expand polyamine structural and functional diversity. PMID:27268252

  4. Engineering thermoacidophilic archaea using linear DNA recombination.

    PubMed

    Maezato, Yukari; Dana, Karl; Blum, Paul

    2011-01-01

    Thermoacidophilic archaea comprise one of the major classes of extremophiles. Most belong to the family Sulfolobales within the phylum Crenarchaeota. They are of applied interest as sources of hyperstable enzymes, for biomining of base and precious metals, and for evolutionary studies because of their use of eukaryotic-like subcellular mechanisms. Genetic methods are available for several species particularly Sulfolobus solfataricus. This organism has a considerable number of methods available for the construction of novel cell lines with unique functions. This chapter presents recent developments in the use of homologous recombination and linear DNA for the engineering of site-specific changes in the genome of S. solfataricus. PMID:21815108

  5. Archaea: The First Domain of Diversified Life

    PubMed Central

    Caetano-Anollés, Gustavo; Nasir, Arshan; Zhou, Kaiyue; Caetano-Anollés, Derek; Mittenthal, Jay E.; Sun, Feng-Jie; Kim, Kyung Mo

    2014-01-01

    The study of the origin of diversified life has been plagued by technical and conceptual difficulties, controversy, and apriorism. It is now popularly accepted that the universal tree of life is rooted in the akaryotes and that Archaea and Eukarya are sister groups to each other. However, evolutionary studies have overwhelmingly focused on nucleic acid and protein sequences, which partially fulfill only two of the three main steps of phylogenetic analysis, formulation of realistic evolutionary models, and optimization of tree reconstruction. In the absence of character polarization, that is, the ability to identify ancestral and derived character states, any statement about the rooting of the tree of life should be considered suspect. Here we show that macromolecular structure and a new phylogenetic framework of analysis that focuses on the parts of biological systems instead of the whole provide both deep and reliable phylogenetic signal and enable us to put forth hypotheses of origin. We review over a decade of phylogenomic studies, which mine information in a genomic census of millions of encoded proteins and RNAs. We show how the use of process models of molecular accumulation that comply with Weston's generality criterion supports a consistent phylogenomic scenario in which the origin of diversified life can be traced back to the early history of Archaea. PMID:24987307

  6. Swimming behavior of selected species of Archaea.

    PubMed

    Herzog, Bastian; Wirth, Reinhard

    2012-03-01

    The swimming behavior of Bacteria has been studied extensively, at least for some species like Escherichia coli. In contrast, almost no data have been published for Archaea on this topic. In a systematic study we asked how the archaeal model organisms Halobacterium salinarum, Methanococcus voltae, Methanococcus maripaludis, Methanocaldococcus jannaschii, Methanocaldococcus villosus, Pyrococcus furiosus, and Sulfolobus acidocaldarius swim and which swimming behavior they exhibit. The two Euryarchaeota M. jannaschii and M. villosus were found to be, by far, the fastest organisms reported up to now, if speed is measured in bodies per second (bps). Their swimming speeds, at close to 400 and 500 bps, are much higher than the speed of the bacterium E. coli or of a very fast animal, like the cheetah, each with a speed of ca. 20 bps. In addition, we observed that two different swimming modes are used by some Archaea. They either swim very rapidly, in a more or less straight line, or they exhibit a slower kind of zigzag swimming behavior if cells are in close proximity to the surface of the glass capillary used for observation. We argue that such a "relocate-and-seek" behavior enables the organisms to stay in their natural habitat. PMID:22247169

  7. Antimicrobial susceptibility of potentially pathogenic halophilic vibrios isolated from seafood.

    PubMed

    Ottaviani, D; Bacchiocchi, I; Masini, L; Leoni, F; Carraturo, A; Giammarioli, M; Sbaraglia, G

    2001-08-01

    Susceptibility patterns to 27 antimicrobial agents and beta-lactamase production were investigated in potentially pathogenic halophilic vibrios from seafood. The effect of salinity on the response to the drugs in vitro was also studied. All isolates were uniformly sensitive to choramphenicol, imipenem, meropenem but resistant to lincomycin. All were highly sensitive to oxolinic acid, trimethoprim-sulphamethoxazole, doxycycline, flumequine, cefotaxime, nalidixic acid and ciprofloxacin. Some strains of V. harveyi, V. alginolyticus and V. parahaemolyticus apparently had mechanisms of resistance to several beta-lactam antibiotics other than by the production of beta-lactamases. Sixty-nine strains produced penicillinase but a low correlation between beta-lactamase activity and resistance to beta-lactam antibiotics was noted. The salt concentration affected the in vitro susceptibility of halophilic vibrios and the effect of salinity depended on both the individual strains and the antimicrobial tested. PMID:11516936

  8. Methanohalophilus zhilinae sp. nov., an alkaliphilic, halophilic, methylotrophic methanogen

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mathrani, I. M.; Boone, D. R.; Mah, R. A.; Fox, G. E.; Lau, P. P.

    1988-01-01

    Methanohalophilus zhilinae, a new alkaliphilic, halophilic, methylotrophic species of methanogenic bacteria, is described. Strain WeN5T (T = type strain) from Bosa Lake of the Wadi el Natrun in Egypt was designated the type strain and was further characterized. This strain was nonmotile, able to catabolize dimethylsulfide, and able to grow in medium with a methyl group-containing substrate (such as methanol or trimethylamine) as the sole organic compound added. Sulfide (21 mM) inhibited cultures growing on trimethylamine. The antibiotic susceptibility pattern of strain WeN5T was typical of the pattern for archaeobacteria, and the guanine-plus-cytosine content of the deoxyribonucleic acid was 38 mol%. Characterization of the 16S ribosomal ribonucleic acid sequence indicated that strain WeN5T is phylogenetically distinct from members of previously described genera other than Methanohalophilus and supported the partition of halophilic methanogens into their own genus.

  9. Comparative genomic analysis of the Haloferax volcanii DS2 and Halobacterium salinarium GRB contig maps reveals extensive rearrangement.

    PubMed Central

    St Jean, A; Charlebois, R L

    1996-01-01

    Anonymous probes from the genome of Halobacterium salinarium GRB and 12 gene probes were hybridized to the cosmid clones representing the chromosome and plasmids of Halobacterium salinarium GRB and Haloferax volcanii DS2. The order of and pairwise distances between 35 loci uniquely cross-hybridizing to both chromosomes were analyzed in a search for conservation. No conservation between the genomes could be detected at the 15-kbp resolution used in this study. We found distinct sets of low-copy-number repeated sequences in the chromosome and plasmids of Halobacterium salinarium GRB, indicating some degree of partitioning between these replicons. We propose alternative courses for the evolution of the haloarchaeal genome: (i) that the majority of genomic differences that exist between genera came about at the inception of this group or (ii) that the differences have accumulated over the lifetime of the lineage. The strengths and limitations of investigating these models through comparative genomic studies are discussed. PMID:8682791

  10. Improvement of halophilic cellulase production from locally isolated fungal strain

    PubMed Central

    Gunny, Ahmad Anas Nagoor; Arbain, Dachyar; Jamal, Parveen; Gumba, Rizo Edwin

    2014-01-01

    Halophilic cellulases from the newly isolated fungus, Aspergillus terreus UniMAP AA-6 were found to be useful for in situ saccharification of ionic liquids treated lignocelluloses. Efforts have been taken to improve the enzyme production through statistical optimization approach namely Plackett–Burman design and the Face Centered Central Composite Design (FCCCD). Plackett–Burman experimental design was used to screen the medium components and process conditions. It was found that carboxymethylcellulose (CMC), FeSO4·7H2O, NaCl, MgSO4·7H2O, peptone, agitation speed and inoculum size significantly influence the production of halophilic cellulase. On the other hand, KH2PO4, KOH, yeast extract and temperature had a negative effect on enzyme production. Further optimization through FCCCD revealed that the optimization approach improved halophilic cellulase production from 0.029 U/ml to 0.0625 U/ml, which was approximately 2.2-times greater than before optimization. PMID:26150755

  11. Improvement of halophilic cellulase production from locally isolated fungal strain.

    PubMed

    Gunny, Ahmad Anas Nagoor; Arbain, Dachyar; Jamal, Parveen; Gumba, Rizo Edwin

    2015-07-01

    Halophilic cellulases from the newly isolated fungus, Aspergillus terreus UniMAP AA-6 were found to be useful for in situ saccharification of ionic liquids treated lignocelluloses. Efforts have been taken to improve the enzyme production through statistical optimization approach namely Plackett-Burman design and the Face Centered Central Composite Design (FCCCD). Plackett-Burman experimental design was used to screen the medium components and process conditions. It was found that carboxymethylcellulose (CMC), FeSO4·7H2O, NaCl, MgSO4·7H2O, peptone, agitation speed and inoculum size significantly influence the production of halophilic cellulase. On the other hand, KH2PO4, KOH, yeast extract and temperature had a negative effect on enzyme production. Further optimization through FCCCD revealed that the optimization approach improved halophilic cellulase production from 0.029 U/ml to 0.0625 U/ml, which was approximately 2.2-times greater than before optimization. PMID:26150755

  12. Draft Genome Sequence of the Moderately Halophilic Bacterium Marinobacter lipolyticus Strain SM19

    PubMed Central

    Papke, R. Thane; de la Haba, Rafael R.; Infante-Domínguez, Carmen; Pérez, Dolores; Sánchez-Porro, Cristina; Lapierre, Pascal

    2013-01-01

    Marinobacter lipolyticus strain SM19, isolated from saline soil in Spain, is a moderately halophilic bacterium belonging to the class Gammaproteobacteria. Here, we report the draft genome sequence of this strain, which consists of a 4.0-Mb chromosome and which is able to produce the halophilic enzyme lipase LipBL. PMID:23814106

  13. Draft Genome Sequence of the Halophilic and Highly Halotolerant Gammaproteobacteria Strain MFB021.

    PubMed

    Joseph, Toms C; Baby, Anju; Reghunathan, Dinesh; Varghese, Aswathy Mary; Murugadas, V; Lalitha, K V

    2014-01-01

    We report the 4.25-Mbp first draft sequence of Gammaproteobacteria strain MFB021, a moderate halophile isolated from petroleum-contaminated soil in Cochin, India. The genome of the strain MFB021 was sequenced to understand the mechanism of hydrocarbon degradation and the halophilicity of the bacterium. PMID:25414494

  14. Comparison of simple sequence repeats in 19 Archaea.

    PubMed

    Trivedi, S

    2006-01-01

    All organisms that have been studied until now have been found to have differential distribution of simple sequence repeats (SSRs), with more SSRs in intergenic than in coding sequences. SSR distribution was investigated in Archaea genomes where complete chromosome sequences of 19 Archaea were analyzed with the program SPUTNIK to find di- to penta-nucleotide repeats. The number of repeats was determined for the complete chromosome sequences and for the coding and non-coding sequences. Different from what has been found for other groups of organisms, there is an abundance of SSRs in coding regions of the genome of some Archaea. Dinucleotide repeats were rare and CG repeats were found in only two Archaea. In general, trinucleotide repeats are the most abundant SSR motifs; however, pentanucleotide repeats are abundant in some Archaea. Some of the tetranucleotide and pentanucleotide repeat motifs are organism specific. In general, repeats are short and CG-rich repeats are present in Archaea having a CG-rich genome. Among the 19 Archaea, SSR density was not correlated with genome size or with optimum growth temperature. Pentanucleotide density had an inverse correlation with the CG content of the genome. PMID:17183484

  15. Ether Lipids of Planktonic Archaea in the Marine Water Column

    PubMed Central

    Hoefs, M.; Schouten, S.; De Leeuw, J. W.; King, L. L.; Wakeham, S. G.; Damste, J.

    1997-01-01

    Acyclic and cyclic biphytanes derived from the membrane ether lipids of archaea were found in water column particulate and sedimentary organic matter from several oxic and anoxic marine environments. Compound-specific isotope analyses of the carbon skeletons suggest that planktonic archaea utilize an isotopically heavy carbon source such as algal carbohydrates and proteins or dissolved bicarbonate. Due to their high preservation potential, these lipids provide a fossil record of planktonic archaea and suggest that they have thrived in marine environments for more than 50 million years. PMID:16535669

  16. Halophilic reactions of a stable silylene with chloro and bromocarbons.

    PubMed

    Moser, Daniel F; Bosse, Todd; Olson, Jordan; Moser, Jessica L; Guzei, Ilia A; West, Robert

    2002-04-24

    A number of disilanes have been synthesized from a stable silylene, 1 (N,N'-di-tert-butyl-1,3-diaza-2-silacyclopent-4-en-2-ylidene), and a variety of halocarbons. It is proposed that disilane formation is a result of an initial halophilic interaction between the silylene and halocarbon. Formation of disilanes from 1 and CCl4, 2a, CHCl3, 2b, CH2Cl2, 2c, benzyl chloride, 2d, and bromobenzene, 5, are described here. An X-ray crystal structure of 2b was determined. PMID:11960428

  17. Halobacterium denitrificans sp. nov., an extremely halophilic denitrifying bacterium

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tomlinson, G. A.; Jahnke, L. L.; Hochstein, L. I.

    1986-01-01

    Halobacterium denitrificans was one of several carbohydrate-utilizing, denitrifying, extremely halophilic bacteria isolated by anaerobic enrichment in the presence of nitrate. Anaerobic growth took place only when nitrate (or nitrite) was present and was accompanied by the production of dinitrogen. In the presence of high concentrations of nitrate (i.e., 0.5 percent), nitrous oxide and nitrite were also detected. When grown aerobically in a mineral-salts medium containing 0.005 percent yeast extract, H. denitrificans utilized a variety of carbohydrates as sources of carbon and energy. In every case, carbohydrate utilization was accompanied by acid production.

  18. Halobacterium denitrificans sp. nov. - An extremely halophilic denitrifying bacterium

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tomlinson, G. A.; Jahnke, L. L.; Hochstein, L. I.

    1986-01-01

    Halobacterium denitrificans was one of several carbohydrate-utilizing, denitrifying, extremely halophilic bacteria isolated by anaerobic enrichment in the presence of nitrate. Anaerobic growth took place only when nitrate (or nitrite) was present and was accompanied by the production of dinitrogen. In the presence of high concentrations of nitrate (i.e., 0.5 percent), nitrous oxide and nitrite were also detected. When grown aerobically in a mineral-salts medium containing 0.005 percent yeast extract, H. denitrificans utilized a variety of carbohydrates as sources of carbon and energy. In every case, carbohydrate utilization was accompanied by acid production.

  19. Archaebacterial class I and class II aldolases from extreme halophiles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alterkar, Wijaya; Dhar, Nenoo M.

    1988-03-01

    Both, class I (Schiff-base forming) and class II (metal requiring) fructose biphosphate aldolases were found to be distributed among halophilic archaebacteria. The aldolase activity fromHalobacterium halobium, H. salinarium, H. cutirubrum, H. mediterranei andH. volcanii exhibited properties of a bacterial class II aldolase as it was metal-dependent for activity and therefore inhibited by EDTA. In contrast, aldolase fromH. saccharovorum, Halobacterium R-113, H. vallismortis andHalobacterium CH-1 formed a Schiff-base intermediate with the substrate and therefore resembled to eukaryotic class I type. The type of aldolase did not vary by changes in the growth medium.

  20. Archaebacterial class I and class II aldolases from extreme halophiles.

    PubMed

    Altekar, W; Dhar, N M

    1988-01-01

    Both, class I (Schiff-base forming) and class II (metal requiring) fructose biphosphate aldolases were found to be distributed among halophilic archaebacteria. The aldolase activity from Halobacteriium halobium, H. salinarium, H. cutirubrum, H. mediterranei and H. volcanii exhibited properties of a bacterial class II aldolase as it was metal-dependent for activity and therefore inhibited by EDTA. In contrast, aldolase from H. saccharovorum, Halobacterium R-113, H. vallismortis and Halobacterium CH-1 formed a Schiff-base intermediate with the substrate and therefore resembled to eukaryotic class I type. The type of aldolase did not vary by changes in the growth medium. PMID:11536602

  1. Useful halophilic, thermostable and ionic liquids tolerant cellulases

    DOEpatents

    Zhang, Tao; Datta, Supratim; Simmons, Blake A.; Rubin, Edward M.

    2016-06-28

    The present invention provides for an isolated or recombinant polypeptide comprising an amino acid sequence having at least 70% identity with the amino acid sequence of a Halorhabdus utahensis cellulase, such as Hu-CBH1, wherein said amino acid sequence has a halophilic thermostable and/or thermophilic cellobiohydrolase (CBH) activity. In some embodiments, the polypeptide has a CBH activity that is resistant to up to about 20% of ionic liquids. The present invention also provides for compositions comprising and methods using the isolated or recombinant polypeptide.

  2. 2003 Archaea: Ecology, Metabolism and Molecular Biology

    SciTech Connect

    Richard F. Shand

    2004-09-21

    The Gordon Research Conference (GRC) on 2003 Archaea: Ecology, Metabolism and Molecular Biology was held at Proctor Academy, Andover, NH from August 3-8, 2003. The Conference was well-attended with 150 participants (attendees list attached). The attendees represented the spectrum of endeavor in this field coming from academia, industry, and government laboratories, both U.S. and foreign scientists, senior researchers, young investigators, and students. In designing the formal speakers program, emphasis was placed on current unpublished research and discussion of the future target areas in this field. There was a conscious effort to stimulate lively discussion about the key issues in the field today. Time for formal presentations was limited in the interest of group discussions. In order that more scientists could communicate their most recent results, poster presentation time was scheduled. Attached is a copy of the formal schedule and speaker program and the poster program. In addition to these formal interactions, ''free time'' was scheduled to allow informal discussions. Such discussions are fostering new collaborations and joint efforts in the field. I want to personally thank you for your support of this Conference. As you know, in the interest of promoting the presentation of unpublished and frontier-breaking research, Gordon Research Conferences does not permit publication of meeting proceedings. If you wish any further details, please feel free to contact me. Thank you, Dr. Richard F. Shand, 2003 Conference Chair.

  3. Experimental fossilisation of viruses from extremophilic Archaea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orange, F.; Chabin, A.; Gorlas, A.; Lucas-Staat, S.; Geslin, C.; Le Romancer, M.; Prangishvili, D.; Forterre, P.; Westall, F.

    2011-06-01

    The role of viruses at different stages of the origin of life has recently been reconsidered. It appears that viruses may have accompanied the earliest forms of life, allowing the transition from an RNA to a DNA world and possibly being involved in the shaping of tree of life in the three domains that we know presently. In addition, a large variety of viruses has been recently identified in extreme environments, hosted by extremophilic microorganisms, in ecosystems considered as analogues to those of the early Earth. Traces of life on the early Earth were preserved by the precipitation of silica on the organic structures. We present the results of the first experimental fossilisation by silica of viruses from extremophilic Archaea (SIRV2 - Sulfolobus islandicus rod-shaped virus 2, TPV1 - Thermococcus prieurii virus 1, and PAV1 - Pyrococcus abyssi virus 1). Our results confirm that viruses can be fossilised, with silica precipitating on the different viral structures (proteins, envelope) over several months in a manner similar to that of other experimentally and naturally fossilised microorganisms. This study thus suggests that viral remains or traces could be preserved in the rock record although their identification may be challenging due to the small size of the viral particles.

  4. Experimental fossilisation of viruses from extremophilic Archaea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orange, F.; Chabin, A.; Gorlas, A.; Lucas-Staat, S.; Geslin, C.; Le Romancer, M.; Prangishvili, D.; Forterre, P.; Westall, F.

    2011-03-01

    The role of viruses at different stages of the origin of life has recently been reconsidered. It appears that viruses may have accompanied the earliest forms of life, allowing the transition from an RNA to a DNA world and possibly being involved in the shaping of tree of life in the three domains that we know presently. In addition, a large variety of viruses has been recently identified in extreme environments, hosted by extremophilic microorganisms, in ecosystems considered as analogues to those of the early Earth. The earliest traces of life were preserved by the precipitation of silica on organic structures. The study of the in situ and experimental fossilisation of microorganisms allows better understanding of the fossilisation processes and helps identification of traces of life in ancient rocks. In a continuation of these studies, we present the results of the first experimental fossilisation by silica of viruses from extremophilic Archaea (SIRV2 - Sulfolobus islandicus Virus 2, TPV1 - Thermococcus prieurii virus 1, and PAV1 - Pyrococcus abyssi virus 1). Our results confirm that viruses can be fossilised, with silica precipitating on the different viral structures (proteins, envelope) over several months. However differences in the silicification process were noticed, depending on the viral structure and composition. The fossilisation mechanism is similar to that of the fossilisation of microorganisms. This study thus suggests that viral remains or traces could be preserved in the rock record although their identification may be challenging due to the small size of the viral particles.

  5. Evidence for Methanogenesis in ANME Archaea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lloyd, K. G.; Kevorkian, R.

    2014-12-01

    Methanogenesis, unlike many higher energy-yielding metabolisms, can be exergonic in the reverse direction at reasonable concentrations of products and reactants. This is because the ΔGf for hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis, 4H2 + CO2 → CH4 + H2O, is quite low, and also because hydrogen exerts a fourth-power control on the reaction quotient. This means that common sedimentary metabolisms such as sulfate reduction and metal reduction can draw hydrogen concentrations low enough as a result of their metabolism to make reverse methanogenesis, or anaerobic methane oxidation, exergonic and potentially a useful energy source for life. Previous work has provided evidence for reverse methanogenesis in marine sediments, but an organism capable of both forward and reverse methanogenesis has not been identified. We present evidence in support of the theory that anaerobic methanotrophs (ANME), which are commonly found in methane producing environments, are capable of growth under methanogenic conditions in anoxic incubations of marine sediments from Cape Lookout Bight, NC. Coupled to a large body of literature studying the participation of ANME archaea in methanotrophy (as well as having molecular machinery for methanogenesis), we propose that these difficult-to-culture organisms can also perform methanogenesis when conditions dictate that methanogenesis is exergonic.

  6. Cultivation and molecular monitoring of halophilic microorganisms inhabiting an extreme environment presented by a salt-attacked monument

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ettenauer, Jörg; Sterflinger, Katja; Piñar, Guadalupe

    2010-01-01

    In the last few years several investigations, based on culture-dependent and -independent techniques, have shown that salt-attacked stone surfaces present a habitat for extremely salt tolerant and moderate halophilic microorganisms. The inner walls of the Chapel of St. Virgil in Vienna (Austria) are an example of this phenomenon. Salt crusts cover most of the wall surfaces and salt crystallization in the porous space of the stone is causing decohesion of material and destruction of the original medieval paintings. The salt, together with the oligotrophic conditions, creates a very special and extreme habitat for halotolerant and halophilic microorganisms. In this study we investigate and monitor the cultivable and non-cultivable members of the microbial community present on the stonework of the medieval Chapel of St. Virgil after several severe disturbances of the microbial environment caused by desalination and disinfection treatments. With this finality, a combination of culture-dependent and -independent techniques was selected. The genetic diversity of a total of 104 bacterial strains isolated from the stone samples was analysed by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE), random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) analysis and 16S rRNA gene sequencing. Strains were distributed over 29 groups on the basis of their RAPD patterns. Only 19 groups were differentiated by DGGE. Comparative sequence analyses showed that the isolated strains belong to related species of the genera Halobacillus (47.1%), Bacillus (35.6%), Acinetobacter (4.8%), Halomonas (3.9%), Nesterenkonia (2.9%), Paucisalibacillus (2.9%), Paenibacillus (1%), Staphylococcus (1%) and Exiguobacterium (1%). In addition, polymerase chain reaction DGGE fingerprints, in combination with the creation of clone libraries and sequencing analyses, were used to monitor and identify Archaea, the non-cultivable fraction of the microbial community. The detected archaeal sequences were closely related to different

  7. Growth Potential of Halophilic Bacteria Isolated from Solar Salt Environments: Carbon Sources and Salt Requirements

    PubMed Central

    Javor, Barbara J.

    1984-01-01

    Eighteen strains of extremely halophilic bacteria and three strains of moderately halophilic bacteria were isolated from four different solar salt environments. Growth tests on carbohydrates, low-molecular-weight carboxylic acids, and complex medium demonstrated that the moderate halophiles and strains of the extreme halophiles Haloarcula and Halococcus grew on most of the substrates tested. Among the Halobacterium isolates were several metabolic groups: strains that grew on a broad range of substrates and strains that were essentially confined to either amino acid (peptone) or carbohydrate oxidation. One strain (WS-4) only grew well on pyruvate and acetate. Most strains of extreme halophiles grew by anaerobic fermentation and possibly by nitrate reduction. Tests of growth potential in natural saltern brines demonstrated that none of the halobacteria grew well in brines which harbor the densest populations of these bacteria in solar salterns. All grew best in brines which were unsaturated with NaCl. The high concentrations of Na+ and Mg2+ found in saltern crystallizer brines limited bacterial growth, but the concentrations of K+ found in these brines had little effect. MgSO4 was relatively more inhibitory to the extreme halophiles than was MgCl2, but the reverse was true for the moderate halophiles. PMID:16346609

  8. Tropical Archaea: Diversity associated with the surface microlayer of corals

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kellogg, C.A.

    2004-01-01

    Recent 16S rDNA studies have focused on detecting uncultivated bacteria associated with Caribbean reef corals in an effort to address the ecological roles of coral-associated microbes. Reports of Archaea associated with fishes and marine invertebrates raised the question of whether Archaea might also be part of the coral-associated microbial community. DNA analysis of mucus from 3 reef-building species of Caribbean corals, Montastraea annularis complex, Diploria strigosa and D. labyrinthiformis in the US Virgin Islands yielded 34 groups of archaeal 16S ribotypes (defined at the level of 97% similarity). The majority (75%) was most closely matched by BLAST searches to sequences derived from marine water column samples, whereas the remaining ribotypes were most similar to sequences isolated from anoxic environments (15%) and hydrothermal vents (9%). Unlike previous 16S studies of coral-associated Bacteria, the results do not suggest specific associations between particular archaeal sequences and individual coral species. Marine Archaea (Groups I, II and III) in addition to Thermoplasma-like, methanogen, and marine benthic crenarchaeote phylotypes, were detected in the mucus of tropical corals. The finding of sequences from coral-associated Archaea that are closely related to strict and facultative anaerobes, as well as to uncultivated Archaea from other types of anoxic environments, suggests that anaerobic micro-niches may exist in coral mucus layers. Archaea, with their unique biogeochemical capabilities, broaden the scope of possible interactions between corals and their associated microbial communities.

  9. Lanthanide behavior in hypersaline evaporation ponds at Guerrero Negro, Baja California, Mexico - an environment with halophiles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choumiline, K.; López-Cortés, A.; Grajeda-Muñoz, M.; Shumilin, E.; Sapozhnikov, D.

    2013-12-01

    Lanthanides are known, in some cases, to be sensitive to changes in water column or sediment chemistry, a fact that allows them to be used as environmental fingerprints. Nevertheless, the behavior of these elements in hypersaline environments is insufficiently understood, especially in those colonized by bacteria, archaea and eukarya halophiles. Extreme environments like the mentioned exist in the artificially-controlled ponds of the 'Exportadora de Sal' salt-producing enterprise located in Guerrero Negro (Baja California, Mexico). Sediment cores from various ponds were collected, subsampled and measured by ICP-MS and INAA. This allowed differencing the behavior of lanthanides and trace elements under a water column salinity gradient along the evaporation sequence of ponds. Sediment profiles (30 mm long), obtained in Pond 5, dominated by Ca and Mg precipitation and at the same time rich in organic matter due to bacterial mat presence, showed highs and lows of the shale-normalized patterns along different in-core depths. Two groups of elements could be distinguished with similar trends: set A (La, Ce, Pr and Nd) and set B (Sm, Gd, Tb, Dy, Ho, Er, Tm, Yb and Lu). The first 'group A' had two prominent peaks at 15 mm and around 22 mm, whereas the 'group B' showed only slight increase at 15 mm and none at 22 mm. Microscopic analyses of prokaryotic cells of a stratified mat in Pond 5 (collected in 2004) showed filamentous bacteria and cyanobacteria with a cell abundance and morphotype richness maxima of prokaryotic cells in a chemocline from 3 mm to 7 mm depth which co-exists nine morphotypes of aerobic and anaerobic prokaryotes Microcoleus chthonoplastes, Leptolyngbya, Cyanothece, Geitlerinema, Spirulina, Chloroflexus, Beggiatoa, Chromatium and Thioploca. Below the 7 mm depth, oxygenic photosynthesis depletes and sulfur reducing compounds increase. The highs of the shale-normalized lanthanide contents of the 'group A' (at 15 mm depth) seem to correlate with the

  10. Characterization of Halophilic Bacterial Communities in Turda Salt Mine (Romania)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carpa, Rahela; Keul, Anca; Muntean, Vasile; Dobrotă, Cristina

    2014-09-01

    Halophilic organisms are having adaptations to extreme salinity, the majority of them being Archaean, which have the ability to grow at extremely high salt concentrations, (from 3 % to 35 %). Level of salinity causes natural fluctuations in the halophilic populations that inhabit this particular habitat, raising problems in maintaining homeostasis of the osmotic pressure. Samples such as salt and water taken from Turda Salt Mine were analyzed in order to identify the eco-physiological bacterial groups. Considering the number of bacteria of each eco-physiological group, the bacterial indicators of salt quality (BISQ) were calculated and studied for each sample. The phosphatase, catalase and dehydrogenases enzymatic activities were quantitatively determined and the enzymatic indicators of salt quality (EISQ) were calculated. Bacterial isolates were analyzed using 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis. Universal bacterial primers, targeting the consensus region of the bacterial 16S rRNA gene were used. Analysis of a large fragment, of 1499 bp was performed to improve discrimination at the species level.

  11. Description of a halocin-producing Haloferax larsenii HA1 isolated from Pachpadra salt lake in Rajasthan.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Vijay; Saxena, Jyoti; Tiwari, Santosh Kumar

    2016-03-01

    Haloarchaea grow in the extreme environment, such as high salt concentration, and secrete antimicrobial peptides known as halocins. Identification of Haloferax larsenii strain HA1 was carried out using biochemical and molecular methods. Strain HA1 was found as a strict aerobe, catalase positive and Gram negative. It was able to grow optimally at 15 % NaCl (w/v), 42 °C and pH 7.2. Strain HA1 was sensitive to bile acid, was resistant to chloramphenicol and could not utilize arginine. Halocin, produced by strain HA1, was stable up to 100 °C and in a pH range of 5.0-9.0. Antimicrobial activity was not affected by organic solvents, surfactants and detergents, but it was completely lost in the presence of proteinase K, suggesting proteinaceous nature of the compound. It was halocidal against indicator strain Hfx. larsenii HA10. The molecular weight of halocin HA1 was found to be ~14 kDa. These properties of halocin HA1 may be applicable to the preservation of salted foods. PMID:26659359

  12. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of binary and ternary complexes of Haloferax mediterranei glucose dehydrogenase

    SciTech Connect

    Esclapez, Julia; Britton, K. Linda; Baker, Patrick J.; Fisher, Martin; Pire, Carmen; Ferrer, Juan; Bonete, María José; Rice, David W.

    2005-08-01

    Single crystals of binary and ternary complexes of wild-type and D38C mutant H. mediterranei glucose dehydrogenase have been obtained by the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion method. Haloferax mediterranei glucose dehydrogenase (EC 1.1.1.47) belongs to the medium-chain alcohol dehydrogenase superfamily and requires zinc for catalysis. In the majority of these family members, the catalytic zinc is tetrahedrally coordinated by the side chains of a cysteine, a histidine, a cysteine or glutamate and a water molecule. In H. mediterranei glucose dehydrogenase, sequence analysis indicates that the zinc coordination is different, with the invariant cysteine replaced by an aspartate residue. In order to analyse the significance of this replacement and to contribute to an understanding of the role of the metal ion in catalysis, a range of binary and ternary complexes of the wild-type and a D38C mutant protein have been crystallized. For most of the complexes, crystals belonging to space group I222 were obtained using sodium/potassium citrate as a precipitant. However, for the binary and non-productive ternary complexes with NADPH/Zn, it was necessary to replace the citrate with 2-methyl-2,4-pentanediol. Despite the radical change in conditions, the crystals thus formed were isomorphous.

  13. Influence of nutritive factors on C50 carotenoids production by Haloferax mediterranei ATCC 33500 with two-stage cultivation.

    PubMed

    Fang, Chun-Jen; Ku, Kuo-Lung; Lee, Min-Hsiung; Su, Nan-Wei

    2010-08-01

    The production of pigments by Haloferax mediterranei ATCC 33500 with two-stage cultivation in response to nutritive factors in culture media was studied. Sodium chloride and magnesium sulfate in the second-stage media showed a marked effect upon the production of pigments, and sodium acetate could enhance the production. As the cells were harvested at mid-log phase of growth in first-stage cultivation and transferred to the defined media containing 5% sodium chloride, 0.1% sodium acetate and 8% magnesium sulfate at 37 degrees C, 120 rpm for further 24 h of cultivation, H. mediterranei exhibited to be an efficient producer of pigments. The yield of pigments could reach up to 0.604 A(494 nm) mL(-1) broth. TLC analysis and the UV-Vis spectra of individual spots thereof revealed that H. mediterranei produced three red pigments of C(50) carotenoid, namely bisanhydrobacterioruberin, monoanhydrobacterioruberin and bacterioruberin, as well as a C(45) carotenoid, 2-isopentenyl-3,4-dehydrorhodopin. PMID:20362434

  14. Functional genomic and advanced genetic studies reveal novel insights into the metabolism, regulation, and biology of Haloferax volcanii.

    PubMed

    Soppa, Jörg

    2011-01-01

    The genome sequence of Haloferax volcanii is available and several comparative genomic in silico studies were performed that yielded novel insight for example into protein export, RNA modifications, small non-coding RNAs, and ubiquitin-like Small Archaeal Modifier Proteins. The full range of functional genomic methods has been established and results from transcriptomic, proteomic and metabolomic studies are discussed. Notably, Hfx. volcanii is together with Halobacterium salinarum the only prokaryotic species for which a translatome analysis has been performed. The results revealed that the fraction of translationally-regulated genes in haloarchaea is as high as in eukaryotes. A highly efficient genetic system has been established that enables the application of libraries as well as the parallel generation of genomic deletion mutants. Facile mutant generation is complemented by the possibility to culture Hfx. volcanii in microtiter plates, allowing the phenotyping of mutant collections. Genetic approaches are currently used to study diverse biological questions-from replication to posttranslational modification-and selected results are discussed. Taken together, the wealth of functional genomic and genetic tools make Hfx. volcanii a bona fide archaeal model species, which has enabled the generation of important results in recent years and will most likely generate further breakthroughs in the future. PMID:22190865

  15. Characterization of halophiles in natural MgSO 4 salts and laboratory enrichment samples: Astrobiological implications for Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foster, Ian S.; King, Penelope L.; Hyde, Brendt C.; Southam, Gordon

    2010-03-01

    The presence of sulfate salts and limited subsurface water (ice) on Mars suggests that any liquid water on Mars today will occur as (magnesium) sulfate-rich brines in regions containing sources of magnesium and sulfur. The Basque Lakes of British Columbia, Canada, represent a hypersaline terrestrial analogue site, which possesses chemical and physical properties similar to those observed on Mars. The Basque Lakes also contain diverse halophilic organisms representing all three Kingdoms of life, growing in surface and near-subsurface environments. Of interest from an astrobiological perspective, crushed magnesium sulfate samples that were analyzed using a modified Lowry protein assay contained biomass in every crystal inspected, with biomass values from 0.078 to 4.21 mg biomass/g salt; average=0.74±0.7 mg biomass/g salt. Bacteria and Archaea cells were easily observed even in low-biomass samples using light microscopy, and bacteria trapped within magnesium sulfate crystals were observed using confocal microscopy. Regions within the salt also contained bacterial pigments, e.g., carotenoids, which were separate from the cells, indicating that cell lysis might have occurred during entrapment within the salt matrix. These biosignatures, cells, and any 'soluble' organic constituents were primarily found trapped within fluid inclusions or fluid-filled void spaces between intergrown crystals. Diffuse reflectance infrared Fourier transform spectroscopy (reflectance IR) analysis of enrichment cultures, containing cyanobacteria, Archaea, or dissimilatory sulfate-reducing bacteria, highlighted molecular biosignature features between 550-1650 and 2400-3000 cm -1. Spectra from natural salts demonstrated that we can detect biomass within salt crystals using the most sensitive biosignatures, which are the 1530-1570 cm -1, C-N, N-H, -COOH absorptions and the 1030-1050 cm -1 C-OH, C-N, PO 43- bond features. The lowest detection limit for a biosignature absorption feature using

  16. Archaea and the prokaryote-to-eukaryote transition.

    PubMed Central

    Brown, J R; Doolittle, W F

    1997-01-01

    Since the late 1970s, determining the phylogenetic relationships among the contemporary domains of life, the Archaea (archaebacteria), Bacteria (eubacteria), and Eucarya (eukaryotes), has been central to the study of early cellular evolution. The two salient issues surrounding the universal tree of life are whether all three domains are monophyletic (i.e., all equivalent in taxanomic rank) and where the root of the universal tree lies. Evaluation of the status of the Archaea has become key to answering these questions. This review considers our cumulative knowledge about the Archaea in relationship to the Bacteria and Eucarya. Particular attention is paid to the recent use of molecular phylogenetic approaches to reconstructing the tree of life. In this regard, the phylogenetic analyses of more than 60 proteins are reviewed and presented in the context of their participation in major biochemical pathways. Although many gene trees are incongruent, the majority do suggest a sisterhood between Archaea and Eucarya. Altering this general pattern of gene evolution are two kinds of potential interdomain gene transferrals. One horizontal gene exchange might have involved the gram-positive Bacteria and the Archaea, while the other might have occurred between proteobacteria and eukaryotes and might have been mediated by endosymbiosis. PMID:9409149

  17. Halobacterium saccharovorum sp. nov., a carbohydrate-metabolizing, extremely halophilic bacterium

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tomlinson, G. A.; Hochstein, L. I.

    1976-01-01

    The previously described extremely halophilic bacterium, strain M6, metabolizes a variety of carbohydrates with the production of acid. In addition, the organism produces nitrite (but no gas) from nitrate, is motile, and grows most rapidly at about 50 C. These characteristics distinguish it from all previously described halophilic bacteria in the genus Halobacterium. It is suggested that it be designated as a new species, Halobacterium saccharovorum.

  18. Draft Genome Sequence of the Extremely Halophilic Phototrophic Purple Sulfur Bacterium Halorhodospira halochloris

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Kumar Saurabh; Kirksey, Jared; Hoff, Wouter D.; Deole, Ratnakar

    2014-01-01

    Halorhodospira halochloris is an extremely halophilic bacterium isolated from hypersaline Wadi Nantrun lakes in Egypt. Here we report the draft genome sequence of this gammaproteobacteria (GI number: 589289709, GenBank Accession number: CP007268). The 3.5-Mb genome encodes for photosynthesis and biosynthesis of organic osmoprotectants. Comparison with the genome of H.halophila promises to yield insights into the evolution of halophilic adaptations. PMID:25057327

  19. Osmoadaptative Strategy and Its Molecular Signature in Obligately Halophilic Heterotrophic Protists

    PubMed Central

    Harding, Tommy; Brown, Matthew W.; Simpson, Alastair G.B.; Roger, Andrew J.

    2016-01-01

    Halophilic microbes living in hypersaline environments must counteract the detrimental effects of low water activity and salt interference. Some halophilic prokaryotes equilibrate their intracellular osmotic strength with the extracellular milieu by importing inorganic solutes, mainly potassium. These “salt-in” organisms characteristically have proteins that are highly enriched with acidic and hydrophilic residues. In contrast, “salt-out” halophiles accumulate large amounts of organic solutes like amino acids, sugars and polyols, and lack a strong signature of halophilicity in the amino acid composition of cytoplasmic proteins. Studies to date have examined halophilic prokaryotes, yeasts, or algae, thus virtually nothing is known about the molecular adaptations of the other eukaryotic microbes, that is, heterotrophic protists (protozoa), that also thrive in hypersaline habitats. We conducted transcriptomic investigations to unravel the molecular adaptations of two obligately halophilic protists, Halocafeteria seosinensis and Pharyngomonas kirbyi. Their predicted cytoplasmic proteomes showed increased hydrophilicity compared with marine protists. Furthermore, analysis of reconstructed ancestral sequences suggested that, relative to mesophiles, proteins in halophilic protists have undergone fewer substitutions from hydrophilic to hydrophobic residues since divergence from their closest relatives. These results suggest that these halophilic protists have a higher intracellular salt content than marine protists. However, absence of the acidic signature of salt-in microbes suggests that Haloc. seosinensis and P. kirbyi utilize organic osmolytes to maintain osmotic equilibrium. We detected increased expression of enzymes involved in synthesis and transport of organic osmolytes, namely hydroxyectoine and myo-inositol, at maximal salt concentration for growth in Haloc. seosinensis, suggesting possible candidates for these inferred organic osmolytes. PMID:27412608

  20. Osmoadaptative Strategy and Its Molecular Signature in Obligately Halophilic Heterotrophic Protists.

    PubMed

    Harding, Tommy; Brown, Matthew W; Simpson, Alastair G B; Roger, Andrew J

    2016-01-01

    Halophilic microbes living in hypersaline environments must counteract the detrimental effects of low water activity and salt interference. Some halophilic prokaryotes equilibrate their intracellular osmotic strength with the extracellular milieu by importing inorganic solutes, mainly potassium. These "salt-in" organisms characteristically have proteins that are highly enriched with acidic and hydrophilic residues. In contrast, "salt-out" halophiles accumulate large amounts of organic solutes like amino acids, sugars and polyols, and lack a strong signature of halophilicity in the amino acid composition of cytoplasmic proteins. Studies to date have examined halophilic prokaryotes, yeasts, or algae, thus virtually nothing is known about the molecular adaptations of the other eukaryotic microbes, that is, heterotrophic protists (protozoa), that also thrive in hypersaline habitats. We conducted transcriptomic investigations to unravel the molecular adaptations of two obligately halophilic protists, Halocafeteria seosinensis and Pharyngomonas kirbyi Their predicted cytoplasmic proteomes showed increased hydrophilicity compared with marine protists. Furthermore, analysis of reconstructed ancestral sequences suggested that, relative to mesophiles, proteins in halophilic protists have undergone fewer substitutions from hydrophilic to hydrophobic residues since divergence from their closest relatives. These results suggest that these halophilic protists have a higher intracellular salt content than marine protists. However, absence of the acidic signature of salt-in microbes suggests that Haloc. seosinensis and P. kirbyi utilize organic osmolytes to maintain osmotic equilibrium. We detected increased expression of enzymes involved in synthesis and transport of organic osmolytes, namely hydroxyectoine and myo-inositol, at maximal salt concentration for growth in Haloc. seosinensis, suggesting possible candidates for these inferred organic osmolytes. PMID:27412608

  1. Complete genome of Martelella sp. AD-3, a moderately halophilic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons-degrading bacterium.

    PubMed

    Cui, Changzheng; Li, Zhijie; Qian, Jiangchao; Shi, Jie; Huang, Ling; Tang, Hongzhi; Chen, Xin; Lin, Kuangfei; Xu, Ping; Liu, Yongdi

    2016-05-10

    Martelella sp. strain AD-3, a moderate halophilic bacterium, was isolated from a petroleum-contaminated soil with high salinity in China. Here, we report the complete genome of strain AD-3, which contains one circular chromosome and two circular plasmids. An array of genes related to metabolism of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and halophilic mechanism in this bacterium was identified by the whole genome analysis. PMID:26988395

  2. A first record of obligate halophilic aspergilli from the dead sea.

    PubMed

    Nazareth, Sarita; Gonsalves, Valerie; Nayak, Shweta

    2012-03-01

    The isolation of obligate halophilic aspergilli from the Dead Sea and the range of salt tolerance of halophilic fungi isolated, are reported here for the first time. The mycobiota of the Dead Sea isolated in this study, was dominated by Aspergillus and Penicillium species; Cladosporium were found in lesser numbers. All three genera were obtained from the water sample; however, Aspergillus was the only genus obtained from the sediment. There was significant difference in growth of each isolate at different salt concentrations and intraspecies analysis revealed dissimilarity in response of strains to different salt concentrations in the growth medium The isolates were euryhaline, with halotolerance up to 20-25% solar salt, Aspergillus and Penicillium species showing a higher level of halotolerance, as compared to that of Cladosporium. Halophilic fungi were found in greater numbers in the sediment sample as compared to that in the water sample. Penicillium and Cladosporium species were exclusively facultative halophiles, while some species of Aspergillus were facultative halophiles. All the obligate halophiles isolated, belonged to the genus Aspergillus and were identified as A. penicillioides and A unguis, the latter being a first record of the species from the Dead Sea. PMID:23449273

  3. Salternamides A-D from a Halophilic Streptomyces sp. Actinobacterium.

    PubMed

    Kim, Seong-Hwan; Shin, Yoonho; Lee, So-Hyoung; Oh, Ki-Bong; Lee, Sang Kook; Shin, Jongheon; Oh, Dong-Chan

    2015-04-24

    Salternamides A-D (1-4), the first secondary metabolites discovered from saltern-derived actinomycetes, were isolated from a halophilic Streptomyces strain isolated from a saltern on Shinui Island in the Republic of Korea. The planar structures of the salternamides, which are new members of the manumycin family, were elucidated by a combination of spectroscopic analyses. The absolute configurations of the salternamides were determined by chemical and spectroscopic methods, including the modified Mosher's method, J-based configuration analysis, and circular dichroism spectroscopy. Salternamide A (1), which is the first chlorinated compound in the manumycin family, exhibited potent cytotoxicity against a human colon cancer cell line (HCT116) and a gastric cancer cell line (SNU638) with submicromolar IC50 values. Salternamides A and D were also determined to be weak Na(+)/K(+) ATPase inhibitors. PMID:25700232

  4. Effects of salts on the halophilic alga Dunaliella viridis.

    PubMed

    Johnson, M K; Johnson, E J; MacElroy, R D; Speer, H L; Bruff, B S

    1968-04-01

    Determinations of the salt sensitivity of enzymes extracted from the halophilic alga Dunaliella viridis revealed that pentose phosphate isomerase, ribulose diphosphate carboxylase, glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase, and phosphohexose isomerase were inhibited by NaCl concentrations far lower than that in the growth medium (3.75 m). The inhibition was reversible and was not prevented by preparing the extracts in the presence of salt. Potassium, lithium, and cesium chlorides were equally inhibitory. In contrast, whole cells require rather high levels of NaCl for optimal growth, whereas growth is inhibited by low levels of the other cations. The results suggest a specific mechanism for the exclusion of sodium from the interior of the cell. PMID:5646631

  5. Halophilic and thermotolerant Gymnoascus species from several special environments, China.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Nan; Zhang, Yu; Liu, Fang; Cai, Lei

    2016-01-01

    This study introduces three new Gymnoascus species (Gymnoascaceae, Onygenales), G. halophilus, G. stercorarius and G. thermotolerans, isolated from sediments in Chaka Salt Lake, compost and cornfield soil, respectively, in China, based on a polyphasic characterization including morphology, physiology and molecular phylogeny. Phylogenetic relationships were assessed based on the nuclear internal transcribed spacer (ITS = ITS1 + 5.8S + ITS2) region and a combined multilocus alignment of the ITS, 18S subunit rRNA gene and 28S subunit rRNA genes. Our study identified phylogenetic and phenotypic characters that differentiated the three new species from known species in the genus. Salinity and temperature tolerance tests revealed that G. halophilus was an obligate halophile while G. stercorarius and G. thermotolerans were halotolerant and thermotolerant. A key to accepted species of Gymnoascus is provided. PMID:26490705

  6. Targeted diversity generation by intraterrestrial archaea and archaeal viruses

    PubMed Central

    Paul, Blair G.; Bagby, Sarah C.; Czornyj, Elizabeth; Arambula, Diego; Handa, Sumit; Sczyrba, Alexander; Ghosh, Partho; Miller, Jeff F.; Valentine, David L.

    2015-01-01

    In the evolutionary arms race between microbes, their parasites, and their neighbours, the capacity for rapid protein diversification is a potent weapon. Diversity-generating retroelements (DGRs) use mutagenic reverse transcription and retrohoming to generate myriad variants of a target gene. Originally discovered in pathogens, these retroelements have been identified in bacteria and their viruses, but never in archaea. Here we report the discovery of intact DGRs in two distinct intraterrestrial archaeal systems: a novel virus that appears to infect archaea in the marine subsurface, and, separately, two uncultivated nanoarchaea from the terrestrial subsurface. The viral DGR system targets putative tail fibre ligand-binding domains, potentially generating >1018 protein variants. The two single-cell nanoarchaeal genomes each possess ≥4 distinct DGRs. Against an expected background of low genome-wide mutation rates, these results demonstrate a previously unsuspected potential for rapid, targeted sequence diversification in intraterrestrial archaea and their viruses. PMID:25798780

  7. Selenocysteine, Pyrrolysine, and the Unique Energy Metabolism of Methanogenic Archaea

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Rother, Michael; Krzycki, Joseph A.

    2010-01-01

    Methanogenic archaea are a group of strictly anaerobic microorganisms characterized by their strict dependence on the process of methanogenesis for energy conservation. Among the archaea, they are also the only known group synthesizing proteins containing selenocysteine or pyrrolysine. All but one of the known archaeal pyrrolysine-containing and all but two of the confirmed archaeal selenocysteine-containing protein are involved in methanogenesis. Synthesis of these proteins proceeds through suppression of translational stop codons but otherwise the two systems are fundamentally different. This paper highlights these differences and summarizes the recent developments in selenocysteine- and pyrrolysine-related research on archaea and aims to putmore » this knowledge into the context of their unique energy metabolism.« less

  8. Production of 5′ Nucleotide by Using Halophilic Nuclease H Preferentially Adsorbed on Flocculated Cells of the Halophile Micrococcus varians subsp. halophilus

    PubMed Central

    Onishi, Hiroshi; Kamekura, Masahiro; Yokoi, Haruhiko; Kobayashi, Takekazu

    1988-01-01

    A bioreactor with a column of flocculated cells of the moderate halophile Micrococcus varians subsp. halophilus which adsorbed the halophilic nuclease H was designed to be used in the production of 5′ nucleotides from RNA. A remarkable characteristic of the flocculated cells was that they preferentially adsorbed much exogenous nuclease, excluding adsorbed 5′ nucleotidase. Furthermore, desalting treatment of the flocculated cells in the presence of 2% MgSO4 · 7H2O gave rise to selective inactivation of 5′ nucleotidase without the loss of nuclease H activity, and 5′-guanylic acid was produced with the bioreactor. PMID:16347767

  9. Sequence analysis and minimal replicon determination of a new haloarchaeal plasmid pHF2 isolated from Haloferax sp. strain Q22.

    PubMed

    Chen, Shaoxing; Wang, Chuangming; Xiang, Hua

    2016-01-01

    A new cryptic plasmid, pHF2 (2520 bp), was isolated from Haloferax sp. strain Q22 (CGMCC 1.15317), a haloarchaeal strain living in a subterranean halite deposit. Sequence analysis revealed that it is the smallest plasmid in the genus Haloferax so far, and three syntropic open reading frames (ORF1, ORF2, and ORF3) were identified on the same strand. ORF1 encodes a putative replication initiation protein (Rep). Three typical motifs (I, II, and III) were presented in the Rep proteins of rolling-circle replicating (RCR) plasmids. The amino acid sequence of the Rep protein is very similar to that of another haloarchaeal plasmid pNB101 in Natronobacterium sp. AS-7091 (coverage 97%, identity 56%). The minimal replicon (~1000 bp) of pHF2 was determined through the construction of a series of truncated plasmids. Interestingly, we also found that the incomplete rep gene still can drive plasmid replication. This plasmid has provided another valuable extra-chromosomal genetic resource, and deepened our knowledge in DNA replication. PMID:26601892

  10. Identification and quantification of methanogenic archaea in adult chicken ceca

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Methanogens, members of the domain Archaea, have been isolated from various animals but few reports exists regarding the isolation of methanogens from chicken, goose, and turkey feces. By using molecular methods for the identification and quantification of methanogenic archea in adult chicken ceca,...