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Sample records for international fungus spore

  1. Fifth international fungus spore conference

    SciTech Connect

    Timberlake, W.E.

    1993-04-01

    This folio contains the proceedings of the Fifth International Fungal Spore Conference held August 17-21, 1991 at the Unicoi State Park at Helen, Georgia. The volume contains abstracts of each oral presentation as well as a collection of abstracts describing the poster sessions. Presentations were organized around the themes (1) Induction of Sporulation, (2) Nuclear Division, (3) Spore Formation, (4) Spore Release and Dispersal, and (4) Spore Germination.

  2. Fifth international fungus spore conference. [Abstracts]: Final technical report

    SciTech Connect

    Timberlake, W.E.

    1993-04-01

    This folio contains the proceedings of the Fifth International Fungal Spore Conference held August 17-21, 1991 at the Unicoi State Park at Helen, Georgia. The volume contains abstracts of each oral presentation as well as a collection of abstracts describing the poster sessions. Presentations were organized around the themes (1) Induction of Sporulation, (2) Nuclear Division, (3) Spore Formation, (4) Spore Release and Dispersal, and (4) Spore Germination.

  3. Computer-assisted image processing to detect spores from the fungus Pandora neoaphidis.

    PubMed

    Korsnes, Reinert; Westrum, Karin; Fløistad, Erling; Klingen, Ingeborg

    2016-01-01

    This contribution demonstrates an example of experimental automatic image analysis to detect spores prepared on microscope slides derived from trapping. The application is to monitor aerial spore counts of the entomopathogenic fungus Pandora neoaphidis which may serve as a biological control agent for aphids. Automatic detection of such spores can therefore play a role in plant protection. The present approach for such detection is a modification of traditional manual microscopy of prepared slides, where autonomous image recording precedes computerised image analysis. The purpose of the present image analysis is to support human visual inspection of imagery data - not to replace it. The workflow has three components:•Preparation of slides for microscopy.•Image recording.•Computerised image processing where the initial part is, as usual, segmentation depending on the actual data product. Then comes identification of blobs, calculation of principal axes of blobs, symmetry operations and projection on a three parameter egg shape space. PMID:27073786

  4. Cooperation among germinating spores facilitates the growth of the fungus, Neurospora crassa.

    PubMed

    Richard, F; Glass, N L; Pringle, A

    2012-06-23

    Fusions between individuals are a common feature of organisms with modular, indeterminate life forms, including plants, marine invertebrates and fungi. The consequences of fusion for an individual fungus are poorly understood. We used wild-type and fusion mutant strains of the genetic model Neurospora crassa to chronicle the fitness in two different laboratory habitats, and in each experiment started colonies from multiple different densities of asexual spores. On round Petri dishes, fusion enabled wild-type colonies to grow larger than mutant (soft) colonies; but in linear 'race tubes', the soft mutant always grew more quickly than the wild-type. Starting a colony with more spores always provided an advantage to a wild-type colony, but was more often neutral or a cost to the soft mutant. The ability to fuse does not provide a consistent advantage to wild-type colonies; net benefits are shaped by both habitat and initial spore densities. PMID:22258449

  5. Computer-assisted image processing to detect spores from the fungus Pandora neoaphidis

    PubMed Central

    Korsnes, Reinert; Westrum, Karin; Fløistad, Erling; Klingen, Ingeborg

    2016-01-01

    This contribution demonstrates an example of experimental automatic image analysis to detect spores prepared on microscope slides derived from trapping. The application is to monitor aerial spore counts of the entomopathogenic fungus Pandora neoaphidis which may serve as a biological control agent for aphids. Automatic detection of such spores can therefore play a role in plant protection. The present approach for such detection is a modification of traditional manual microscopy of prepared slides, where autonomous image recording precedes computerised image analysis. The purpose of the present image analysis is to support human visual inspection of imagery data – not to replace it. The workflow has three components:•Preparation of slides for microscopy.•Image recording.•Computerised image processing where the initial part is, as usual, segmentation depending on the actual data product. Then comes identification of blobs, calculation of principal axes of blobs, symmetry operations and projection on a three parameter egg shape space. PMID:27073786

  6. Spores

    MedlinePlus

    A spore is a cell that certain fungi, plants (moss, ferns), and bacteria produce. Spores are involved in reproduction. Certain bacteria make spores as a way to defend themselves. These spores have thick walls. They can resist high temperatures, ...

  7. Spores

    MedlinePlus

    ... do not destroy their spores. A process called sterilization destroys spores and bacteria. It is done at ... and under high pressures. In health care settings, sterilization is usually done using a device called an ...

  8. Diffusible component from the spore surface of the fungus Aspergillus fumigatus which inhibits the macrophage oxidative burst is distinct from gliotoxin and other hyphal toxins

    PubMed Central

    Mitchell, C. G.; Slight, J.; Donaldson, K.

    1997-01-01

    BACKGROUND: The fungus Aspergillus fumigatus, whose spores are present ubiquitously in the air, causes a range of diseases in the human lung. A small molecular weight (< 10 kD) heat stable toxin released from the spores of clinical and environmental isolates of A fumigatus within minutes of deposition in aqueous solution has previously been described. A key effect of the toxin was to inhibit the oxidative burst of macrophages as measured by superoxide anion release. It was hypothesised that the toxin was one of the commonly found A fumigatus hyphal toxins such as gliotoxin. This inhibitor may be an important factor which allows the fungus to colonise the lung. METHODS: The spore derived inhibitor was shown to inhibit the respiratory burst of rat alveolar macrophages, as measured by the generation of superoxide anion. Samples of the spore diffusate were subject to reversed phase high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), thin layer chromatography (TLC), high performance thin layer chromatography (HPTLC), or organic extraction followed by TLC or HPLC to identify the presence of gliotoxin, fumagillin, helvolic acid, fumigaclavine-C, and aurasperone-C. Commercially obtained preparations of the toxins gliotoxin, fumagillin and helvolic acid and extracts enriched for fumigaclavine-C and aurasperone-C were used as internal and external standards and in the respiratory burst measurements. RESULTS: Gliotoxin, fumagillin, helvolic acid, fumigaclavine-C, and aurasperone- C were not detected in spore derived diffusate using PHLC or TLC. Using extraction procedures with solvents known to extract gliotoxin from A fumigatus culture supernatants, no gliotoxin was detected in the spore derived diffusate. Commercial gliotoxin, fumagillin, and helvolic acid or extracts enriched for fumigaclavine-C and aurasperone-C did not inhibit the oxidative burst of macrophages. CONCLUSIONS: The hypothesis that the spore derived toxin is one of the toxins derived from hyphae such as gliotoxin

  9. Fungal Spores Viability on the International Space Station

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gomoiu, I.; Chatzitheodoridis, E.; Vadrucci, S.; Walther, I.; Cojoc, R.

    2016-04-01

    In this study we investigated the security of a spaceflight experiment from two points of view: spreading of dried fungal spores placed on the different wafers and their viability during short and long term missions on the International Space Station (ISS). Microscopic characteristics of spores from dried spores samples were investigated, as well as the morphology of the colonies obtained from spores that survived during mission. The selected fungal species were: Aspergillus niger, Cladosporium herbarum, Ulocladium chartarum, and Basipetospora halophila. They have been chosen mainly based on their involvement in the biodeterioration of different substrate in the ISS as well as their presence as possible contaminants of the ISS. From biological point of view, three of the selected species are black fungi, with high melanin content and therefore highly resistant to space radiation. The visual inspection and analysis of the images taken before and after the short and the long term experiments have shown that all biocontainers were returned to Earth without damages. Microscope images of the lids of the culture plates revealed that the spores of all species were actually not detached from the surface of the wafers and did not contaminate the lids. From the adhesion point of view all types of wafers can be used in space experiments, with a special comment on the viability in the particular case of iron wafers when used for spores that belong to B. halophila (halophilic strain). This is encouraging in performing experiments with fungi without risking contamination. The spore viability was lower in the experiment for long time to ISS conditions than that of the short experiment. From the observations, it is suggested that the environment of the enclosed biocontainer, as well as the species'specific behaviour have an important effect, reducing the viability in time. Even the spores were not detached from the surface of the wafers, it was observed that spores used in the

  10. Tilletia vankyi, a new species of reticulate-spored bunt fungus with non-conjugating basidiospores infecting species of Festuca and Lolium

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A bunt fungus infecting commercial perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne) from Australia and chewings fescue (Festuca rubra) from the U.S.A. exhibits a spore germination pattern that is unique from other reticulately-spored species of Tilletia infecting hosts in the grass subfamily Pooideae. Teliospor...

  11. Involvement of a caleosin in lipid storage, spore dispersal, and virulence in the entomopathogenic filamentous fungus, Beauveria bassiana.

    PubMed

    Fan, Yanhua; Ortiz-Urquiza, Almudena; Garrett, Timothy; Pei, Yan; Keyhani, Nemat O

    2015-11-01

    Eukaryotic cells store lipids in membrane-encased droplets. The entomopathogenic fungus, Beauveria bassiana, initiates infection via attachment of its spores to the epicuticle or waxy layer of target insects, degrading and assimilating host surface hydrocarbons, carbohydrates and proteins. Caleosins are components of the proteinaceous coat of lipid droplets and a single B. bassiana caleosin homologue, Bbcal1, was identified and characterized. The BbCal1 sequence contained an EF-hand Ca(2+) binding domain and potential hydrophobic stretches similar to those found in plant caleosins, along with a proline knot motif defined by only two proline residues. Targeted gene inactivation of Bbcal1 did not appear to affect spore germination, growth on lipid substrates or stress response, but changes in lipid, vacuole and endoplasmic reticulum/multilamellar vesicle-like structures, and altered cellular lipid profiles were seen in conidia grown on a variety of substrates including potato dextrose agar, olive oil, glyceride trioleate, oleic acid and the alkane, C16 . The ΔBbcal1 mutant produced more compact assemblages of conidia, displayed a reduced and delayed spore dispersal phenotype, and showed decreased virulence in insect bioassays using the greater wax moth, Galleria mellonella. Our data indicate novel functions for caleosins in fungal virulence, spore development and the trafficking and/or turnover of lipid-related structures. PMID:26235819

  12. Spore Density Determines Infection Strategy by the Plant Pathogenic Fungus Plectosphaerella cucumerina1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Necrotrophic and biotrophic pathogens are resisted by different plant defenses. While necrotrophic pathogens are sensitive to jasmonic acid (JA)-dependent resistance, biotrophic pathogens are resisted by salicylic acid (SA)- and reactive oxygen species (ROS)-dependent resistance. Although many pathogens switch from biotrophy to necrotrophy during infection, little is known about the signals triggering this transition. This study is based on the observation that the early colonization pattern and symptom development by the ascomycete pathogen Plectosphaerella cucumerina (P. cucumerina) vary between inoculation methods. Using the Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) defense response as a proxy for infection strategy, we examined whether P. cucumerina alternates between hemibiotrophic and necrotrophic lifestyles, depending on initial spore density and distribution on the leaf surface. Untargeted metabolome analysis revealed profound differences in metabolic defense signatures upon different inoculation methods. Quantification of JA and SA, marker gene expression, and cell death confirmed that infection from high spore densities activates JA-dependent defenses with excessive cell death, while infection from low spore densities induces SA-dependent defenses with lower levels of cell death. Phenotyping of Arabidopsis mutants in JA, SA, and ROS signaling confirmed that P. cucumerina is differentially resisted by JA- and SA/ROS-dependent defenses, depending on initial spore density and distribution on the leaf. Furthermore, in situ staining for early callose deposition at the infection sites revealed that necrotrophy by P. cucumerina is associated with elevated host defense. We conclude that P. cucumerina adapts to early-acting plant defenses by switching from a hemibiotrophic to a necrotrophic infection program, thereby gaining an advantage of immunity-related cell death in the host. PMID:26842622

  13. Total Dose Effects (TDE) of heavy ionizing radiation in fungus spores and plant seeds: Preliminary investigations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kranz, A. R.; Zimmermann, M. W.; Stadler, R.; Gartenbach, K. E.; Pickert, M.

    1992-01-01

    The opportunity to compare cosmic radiation effects caused during long and short duration exposure flights in biological objects are limited until now, and data obtained so far are very rare and insufficient. Because of the very long exposure of the experiment during the Long Duration Exposure Facility (LDEF) mission (approximately 2000 days) structural changes of the hardware material can be expected which will influence its biocompatibility and, thus, will interact with the radiobiological effects. The aim of the experiment flown on LDEF was a detailed investigation of biological effects caused by cosmic radiation especially of particles of high atomic number Z and high energy. The flight hardware consisted of standard BIOSTACK containers; in these containers a special sandwich construction consisted of visual plastic detectors with seed rsp. spore layers interlocked.

  14. Self-inhibition of spore germination via reactive oxygen in the fungus Cladosporium cucumerinum, causal agent of cucurbit scab

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cladosporium cucumerinum spore germination in vitro depended on spore suspension density. Different fungal isolates displayed maximum germination at different spore concentrations. For one isolate, maximum spore density was observed at both 18 and 25 °C, although germination percentage increased sli...

  15. Single spore isolation and morphological characterization of local Malaysian isolates of rice blast fungus Magnoporthe grisea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mishra, Ankitta; Ratnam, Wickneswari; Bhuiyan, Md Atiqur Rahman; Ponaya, Ariane; Jena, Khisord K.

    2015-09-01

    Rice blast is a destructive disease, caused by the fungal pathogen Magnaporthe grisea. It causes considerable damage to rice and leads to crop loss in rice growing regions worldwide. Although fungicides can be used to control rice blast, they generate additional cost in rice production and contamination of environment and food. Therefore, the use of resistant varieties is thought to be one of the most economically and environmentally efficient ways of crop protection from the disease. Six new local Malaysian isolates of M. grisea were isolated using single spore isolation method. Five isolates were from infected leaf samples collected from Kompleks Latihan MADA, Kedah and one was from Kelantan. These isolates were identified using morphological characteristics and microscopic studies and later confirmed by ITSequences. These isolates were induced to sporulate and used for greenhouse screening on two differential rice varieties: Mahsuri (susceptible) and Pongsu Seribu 2 (resistant). Among the 6 isolates, isolate number 3 was found to be the most virulent showing high sporulation while isolate number 4 was very slow growing, and the least virulent.

  16. Resting spore formation of aphid-pathogenic fungus Pandora nouryi depends on the concentration of infective inoculum.

    PubMed

    Huang, Zhi-Hong; Feng, Ming-Guang

    2008-07-01

    Resting spore formation of some aphid-pathogenic Entomophthorales is important for the seasonal pattern of their prevalence and survival but this process is poorly understood. To explore the possible mechanism involved in the process, Pandora nouryi (obligate aphid pathogen) interacted with green peach aphid Myzus persicae on cabbage leaves under favourable conditions. Host nymphs showered with primary conidia of an isolate (LC(50): 0.9-6.7 conidia mm(-2) 4-7 days post shower) from air captures in the low-latitude plateau of China produced resting spores (azygospores), primary conidia or both spore types. Surprisingly, the proportion of mycosed cadavers forming resting spores (P(CFRS)) increased sharply within the concentrations (C) of 28-240 conidia mm(-2), retained high levels at 240-1760, but was zero or extremely low at 0.3-16. The P(CFRS)-C relationship fit well the logistic equation P(CFRS) = 0.6774/[1 + exp(3.1229-0.0270C)] (r(2) = 0.975). This clarified for the first time the dependence of in vivo resting spore formation of P. nouryi upon the concentration of infective inoculum. A hypothesis is thus proposed that some sort of biochemical signals may exist in the host-pathogen interaction so that the fungal pathogen perceives the signals for prompt response to forthcoming host-density changes by either producing conidia for infecting available hosts or forming resting spores for surviving host absence in situ. PMID:18341580

  17. Spore behaviors reveal a category of mating-competent infertile heterokaryons in the offspring of the medicinal fungus Agaricus subrufescens.

    PubMed

    Rocha de Brito, Manuela; Foulongne-Oriol, Marie; Moinard, Magalie; Souza Dias, Eustáquio; Savoie, Jean-Michel; Callac, Philippe

    2016-01-01

    Strain breeding is much less advanced in the edible and medicinal species Agaricus subrufescens than in Agaricus bisporus, the button mushroom. Both species have a unifactorial system of sexual incompatibility, a mating type locus tightly linked to a centromere, and basidia producing both homokaryotic (n) and heterokaryotic (n + n) spores. In A. bisporus, breeding is mainly based on direct selection among the heterokaryotic offspring and on hybridization between homokaryotic offspring. The parental heterozygosity is highly maintained in the heterokaryotic offspring due to suppression of recombination and preferential pairing in the spores of nuclei, each one per second meiotic divisions; such "non-sister nuclei" heterokaryons are fertile. In A. subrufescens, recent studies revealed that recombination is not suppressed and that nuclei from the same second meiotic division can also be paired in a spore that give rise to a "sister nuclei" heterokaryon in which the nuclei bear the same mating type allele. The objective of the present work was to investigate the potential function of the different categories of spores in A. subrufescens and their possible use in a genetic breeding program. Using eight co-dominant molecular markers, we found that half of the offspring of the A. subrufescens strain WC837 were heterokaryotic, one quarter of them being sister nuclei heterokaryons. These heterokaryons were infertile and behaved like homokaryons, being even able to cross between each other. In contrast, non-sister nuclei heterokaryons could fruit but inconsistently due to inbreeding depression. Potential roles of these two categories of heterokaryons in nature and consequences for strain breeding are discussed. PMID:26497018

  18. Analysis of global gene expression changes in human bronchial epithelial cells exposed to spores of the allergenic fungus, Alternaria alternata

    PubMed Central

    Babiceanu, M. C.; Howard, B. A.; Rumore, A. C.; Kita, H.; Lawrence, C. B.

    2013-01-01

    Exposure and sensitivity to ubiquitous airborne fungi such as Alternaria alternata have long been implicated in the development, onset, and exacerbation of chronic allergic airway disorders. This present study is the first to investigate global changes in host gene expression during the interaction of cultured human bronchial epithelial cells and live Alternaria spores. In in vitro experiments human bronchial epithelial cells (BEAS-2B) were exposed to spores or media alone for 24 h. RNA was collected from three biological replicates per treatment and was used to assess changes in gene expression patterns using Affymetrix Human Genome U133 Plus 2.0 Arrays. In cells treated with Alternaria spores compared to controls, 613 probe sets representing 460 individual genes were found differentially expressed (p ≤ 0.05). In this set of 460 statistically significant, differentially expressed genes, 397 genes were found to be up-regulated and 63 were down-regulated. Of these 397 up-regulated genes, 156 genes were found to be up-regulated ≥2 fold. Interestingly, none of the 63 down-regulated genes were found differentially expressed at ≤−2 fold. Differentially expressed genes were identified following statistical analysis and subsequently used for pathway and network evaluation. Interestingly, many cytokine and chemokine immune response genes were up-regulated with a particular emphasis on interferon-inducible genes. Genes involved in cell death, retinoic acid signaling, and TLR3 response pathways were also significantly up-regulated. Many of the differentially up-regulated genes have been shown in other systems to be associated with innate immunity, inflammation and/or allergic airway diseases. This study now provides substantial information for further investigating specific genes and innate immune system pathways activated by Alternaria in the context of allergic airway diseases. PMID:23882263

  19. Fungus Amongus

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wakeley, Deidra

    2005-01-01

    This role-playing simulation is designed to help teach middle level students about the typical lifecycle of a fungus. In this interactive simulation, students assume the roles of fungi, spores, living and dead organisms, bacteria, and rain. As they move around a playing field collecting food and water chips, they discover how the organisms…

  20. The CarO rhodopsin of the fungus Fusarium fujikuroi is a light-driven proton pump that retards spore germination

    PubMed Central

    García-Martínez, Jorge; Brunk, Michael; Avalos, Javier; Terpitz, Ulrich

    2015-01-01

    Rhodopsins are membrane-embedded photoreceptors found in all major taxonomic kingdoms using retinal as their chromophore. They play well-known functions in different biological systems, but their roles in fungi remain unknown. The filamentous fungus Fusarium fujikuroi contains two putative rhodopsins, CarO and OpsA. The gene carO is light-regulated, and the predicted polypeptide contains all conserved residues required for proton pumping. We aimed to elucidate the expression and cellular location of the fungal rhodopsin CarO, its presumed proton-pumping activity and the possible effect of such function on F. fujikuroi growth. In electrophysiology experiments we confirmed that CarO is a green-light driven proton pump. Visualization of fluorescent CarO-YFP expressed in F. fujikuroi under control of its native promoter revealed higher accumulation in spores (conidia) produced by light-exposed mycelia. Germination analyses of conidia from carO− mutant and carO+ control strains showed a faster development of light-exposed carO− germlings. In conclusion, CarO is an active proton pump, abundant in light-formed conidia, whose activity slows down early hyphal development under light. Interestingly, CarO-related rhodopsins are typically found in plant-associated fungi, where green light dominates the phyllosphere. Our data provide the first reliable clue on a possible biological role of a fungal rhodopsin. PMID:25589426

  1. Ultrastructure and properties of Paecilomyces lilacinus spores.

    PubMed

    Holland, R J; Gunasekera, T S; Williams, K L; Nevalainen, K M H

    2002-10-01

    Strains of the filamentous soil fungus Paecilomyces lilacinus are currently being developed for use as biological control agents against root-knot, cyst, and other plant-parasitic nematodes. The inoculum applied in the field consists mainly of spores. This study was undertaken to examine the size, ultrastructure, and rodlet layers of P. lilacinus spores and the effect of the culture method on structural and functional spore properties. A rodlet layer was identified on aerial spores only. Other differences noted between aerial spores and those produced in submerged culture included the size and appearance of spores and thickness of spore coat layers when examined with transmission electron microscopy. The two spore types differed in UV tolerance, with aerial spores being less sensitive to environmentally relevant UV radiation. Also, viability after drying and storage was better with the aerial spores. Both spore types exhibited similar nematophagous ability. PMID:12489777

  2. Survival of Spores of Trichoderma longibrachiatum in Space: data from the Space Experiment SPORES on EXPOSE-R

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neuberger, Katja; Lux-Endrich, Astrid; Panitz, Corinna

    2015-01-01

    In the space experiment `Spores in artificial meteorites' (SPORES), spores of the fungus Trichoderma longibrachiatum were exposed to low-Earth orbit for nearly 2 years on board the EXPOSE-R facility outside of the International Space Station. The environmental conditions tested in space were: space vacuum at 10-7-10-4 Pa or argon atmosphere at 105 Pa as inert gas atmosphere, solar extraterrestrial ultraviolet (UV) radiation at λ > 110 nm or λ > 200 nm with fluences up to 5.8 × 108 J m-2, cosmic radiation of a total dose range from 225 to 320 mGy, and temperature fluctuations from -25 to +50°C, applied isolated or in combination. Comparable control experiments were performed on ground. After retrieval, viability of spores was analysed by two methods: (i) ethidium bromide staining and (ii) test of germination capability. About 30% of the spores in vacuum survived the space travel, if shielded against insolation. However, in most cases no significant decrease was observed for spores exposed in addition to the full spectrum of solar UV irradiation. As the spores were exposed in clusters, the outer layers of spores may have shielded the inner part. The results give some information about the likelihood of lithopanspermia, the natural transfer of micro-organisms between planets. In addition to the parameters of outer space, sojourn time in space seems to be one of the limiting parameters.

  3. The Transcription Factor FgStuA Influences Spore Development, Pathogenicity and Secondary Metabolism in the Plant Pathogenic Fungus Fusarium graminearum

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The filamentous fungus Fusarium graminearum causes extensive losses on cereals world-wide and contaminates harvested grain with mycotoxins, whose levels in the food supply are strictly regulated. We deleted the FgStuA gene in Fusarium graminearum and demonstrate its involvement in several different ...

  4. Mushrooms use convectively created airflows to disperse their spores.

    PubMed

    Dressaire, Emilie; Yamada, Lisa; Song, Boya; Roper, Marcus

    2016-03-15

    Thousands of basidiomycete fungal species rely on mushroom spores to spread across landscapes. It has long been thought that spores depend on favorable winds for dispersal--that active control of spore dispersal by the parent fungus is limited to an impulse delivered to the spores to carry them clear of the gill surface. Here we show that evaporative cooling of the air surrounding the pileus creates convective airflows capable of carrying spores at speeds of centimeters per second. Convective cells can transport spores from gaps that may be only 1 cm high and lift spores 10 cm or more into the air. This work reveals how mushrooms tolerate and even benefit from crowding and explains their high water needs. PMID:26929324

  5. Hydrazine vapor inactivates Bacillus spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schubert, Wayne W.; Engler, Diane L.; Beaudet, Robert A.

    2016-05-01

    NASA policy restricts the total number of bacterial spores that can remain on a spacecraft traveling to any planetary body which might harbor life or have evidence of past life. Hydrazine, N2H4, is commonly used as a propellant on spacecraft. Hydrazine as a liquid is known to inactivate bacterial spores. We have now verified that hydrazine vapor also inactivates bacterial spores. After Bacillus atrophaeus ATCC 9372 spores deposited on stainless steel coupons were exposed to saturated hydrazine vapor in closed containers, the spores were recovered from the coupons, serially diluted, pour plated and the surviving bacterial colonies were counted. The exposure times required to reduce the spore population by a factor of ten, known as the D-value, were 4.70 ± 0.50 h at 25 °C and 2.85 ± 0.13 h at 35 °C. These inactivation rates are short enough to ensure that the bioburden of the surfaces and volumes would be negligible after prolonged exposure to hydrazine vapor. Thus, all the propellant tubing and internal tank surfaces exposed to hydrazine vapor do not contribute to the total spore count.

  6. Lyophilized spore dispenser

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jessup, A. D. (Inventor)

    1973-01-01

    A lyophilized spore dispenser is provided which produces a finely divided, monoparticulate cloud of bacterial spores. The spores are contained within a tightly sealed chamber, and a turbulator orifice connected to an air supply source provides a jet of air which stirs up the spores and causes the spores to be suspended in eddy currents within the chamber. This air jet also produces a positive pressure within the chamber which forces the spores out of an injection orifice.

  7. Fun Microbiology: Using a Plant Pathogenic Fungus To Demonstrate Koch's Postulates.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mitchell, James K.; Orsted, Kathy M.; Warnes, Carl E.

    1997-01-01

    Describes an experiment using a plant pathogenic fungus in which students learn to follow aseptic techniques, grow and produce spores of a fungus, use a hemacytometer for enumerating spores, prepare serial dilutions, grow and inoculate plants, isolate a pure culture using agar streak plates, and demonstrate the four steps of Koch's postulates.…

  8. Virulence and Molecular Polymorphism in International Collections of the Wheat Leaf Rust Fungus Puccinia triticina.

    PubMed

    Kolmer, J A; Liu, J Q

    2000-04-01

    ABSTRACT Collections of Puccinia triticina, the wheat leaf rust fungus, were obtained from Great Britain, Slovakia, Israel, Germany, Australia, Italy, Spain, Hungary, South Africa, Uruguay, New Zealand, Brazil, Pakistan, Nepal, and eastern and western Canada. All single-uredinial isolates derived from the collections were tested for virulence polymorphism on 22 Thatcher wheat lines that are near-isogenic for leaf rust resistance genes. Based on virulence phenotype, selected isolates were also tested for randomly amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) using 11 primers. The national collections were placed into 11 groups based on previously established epidemiological zones. Among the 131 single-uredinial isolates, 105 virulence phenotypes and 82 RAPD phenotypes were described. In a modified analysis of variance, 26% of the virulence variation was due to differences in isolates between groups, with the remainder attributable to differences within groups. Of the RAPD variation, 36% was due to differences in isolates between groups. Clustering based on the average virulence distance (simple distance coefficient) within and between groups resulted in eight groups that differed significantly. Collections from Australia-New Zealand, Spain, Italy, and Britain did not differ significantly for virulence. Clustering of RAPD marker differences (1 - Dice coefficient) distinguished nine groups that differed significantly. Collections from Spain and Italy did not differ significantly for RAPD variation, neither did collections from western Canada and South America. Groups of isolates distinguished by avirulent/virulent infection types to wheat lines with resistance genes Lr1, Lr2a, Lr2c, and Lr3 also differed significantly for RAPD distance, showing a general relationship between virulence and RAPD phenotype. The results indicated that on a worldwide level collections of P. triticina differ for virulence and molecular backgrounds. PMID:18944595

  9. Spore Resistance Properties.

    PubMed

    Setlow, Peter

    2014-10-01

    Spores of various Bacillus and Clostridium species are among the most resistant life forms known. Since the spores of some species are causative agents of much food spoilage, food poisoning, and human disease, and the spores of Bacillus anthracis are a major bioweapon, there is much interest in the mechanisms of spore resistance and how these spores can be killed. This article will discuss the factors involved in spore resistance to agents such as wet and dry heat, desiccation, UV and γ-radiation, enzymes that hydrolyze bacterial cell walls, and a variety of toxic chemicals, including genotoxic agents, oxidizing agents, aldehydes, acid, and alkali. These resistance factors include the outer layers of the spore, such as the thick proteinaceous coat that detoxifies reactive chemicals; the relatively impermeable inner spore membrane that restricts access of toxic chemicals to the spore core containing the spore's DNA and most enzymes; the low water content and high level of dipicolinic acid in the spore core that protect core macromolecules from the effects of heat and desiccation; the saturation of spore DNA with a novel group of proteins that protect the DNA against heat, genotoxic chemicals, and radiation; and the repair of radiation damage to DNA when spores germinate and return to life. Despite their extreme resistance, spores can be killed, including by damage to DNA, crucial spore proteins, the spore's inner membrane, and one or more components of the spore germination apparatus. PMID:26104355

  10. Spores Disperse, Too!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schumann, Donna N.

    1981-01-01

    Suggests the use of spores and spore-producing structures to show adaptations facilitating spore dispersal and dispersal to favorable environments. Describes several activities using horsetails, ferns, and mosses. Lists five safety factors related to use of mold spores in the classroom. (DS)

  11. Bioherbicidal activity from washed spores of Myrothecium verrucaria.

    PubMed

    Weaver, Mark A; Boyette, C Douglas; Hoagland, Robert E

    2012-05-01

    The fungal plant pathogen, Myrothecium verrucaria, is highly virulent to several important weed species and has potential utility as a bioherbicide. However the production of macrocyclic trichothecene mycotoxins by this fungus presents significant safety concerns. It was discovered that trichothecenes are removed from M. verrucaria spores by repeated washes with water. These washed spores retained bioherbicidal efficacy against kudzu when tested in field trials and on sicklepod when tested under greenhouse conditions. Changes in the growth medium combined with washing spores with water resulted in greater than 95% reduction in roridin A and verrucarin A. Washing spores reduced trichothecene concentrations in spore preparations with no significant effect on plant biomass reduction, thus demonstrating the possibility of M. verrucaria formulations with improved safety to researchers, producers and applicators. PMID:22806015

  12. Release of elicitors from rice blast spores under the action of reactive oxygen species

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effects of reactive oxygen species (ROS) on secretion of hypothesized elicitors from spores of rice blast causal fungus Magnaporthe grisea were studied. For spore exposure to exogenous ROS, they were germinated for 5 h in 50 µM H2O2 followed by addition of catalase E.C. 1.11.1.6 (to decompose pe...

  13. Allergenic airborne pollen and spores in Anchorage, Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, J.H.

    1985-05-01

    Major aeroallergens in Anchorage are birch, alder, poplar, spruce, grass pollen, Cladosporium, and unspecified fungus spores. Lesser pollens are sorrel, willow, pine, juniper, sedge, lamb's-quarters, wormwood, plantain, and others. The aero-flora is discussed in terms of the frequency of allergenically significant events and within-season and year-to-year dynamics.

  14. Hydrazine inactivates bacillus spores

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schubert, Wayne; Plett, G. A.; Yavrouian, A. H.; Barengoltz, J.

    2005-01-01

    Planetary Protection places requirements on the maximum number of viable bacterial spores that may be delivered by a spacecraft to another solar system body. Therefore, for such space missions, the spores that may be found in hydrazine are of concern. A proposed change in processing procedures that eliminated a 0.2 um filtration step propmpted this study to ensure microbial contamination issue existed, especially since no information was found in the literature to substantiate bacterial spore inactivation by hydrazine.

  15. Spore dispersal of fetid Lysurus mokusin by feces of mycophagous insects.

    PubMed

    Chen, Gao; Zhang, Rui-Rui; Liu, Yang; Sun, Wei-Bang

    2014-08-01

    The ecological roles and biological mechanisms of zoochory in plants have long been foci in studies of co-evolutionary processes between plants and animals. However, the dispersal of fungal spores by animals has received comparatively little attention. In this study, the dispersal of spores of a selected fetid fungus, Lysurus mokusin, via feces of mycophagous insects was explored by: collecting volatiles emitted by the fungus using dynamic headspace extraction and analyzing them by GC-MS; testing the capacity of mycophagous insects to disperse its spores by counting spores in their feces; comparing the germinability of L. mokusin spores extracted from feces of nocturnal earwigs and natural gleba of the fungus; and assessing the ability of L. mokusin volatiles to attract insects in bioassays with synthetic scent mixtures. Numerous spores were detected in insects' feces, the bioassays indicated that L. mokusin odor (similar to that of decaying substances) attracts diverse generalist mycophagous insects, and passage through the gut of Anisolabis maritima earwigs significantly enhanced the germination rate of L. mokusin spores. Therefore, nocturnal earwigs and diurnal flies probably play important roles in dispersal of L. mokusin spores, and dispersal via feces may be an important common dispersal mechanism for fungal reproductive tissue. PMID:25064696

  16. Microplate Assay for Colletotrichum Spore Production

    PubMed Central

    Slade, S. J.; Harris, R. F.; Smith, C. S.; Andrews, J. H.; Nordheim, E. V.

    1987-01-01

    A simple microplate method was devised to assay spore production by Colletotrichum gloeosporioides by growing the fungus on 1 ml of solid media in the wells of tissue culture plates. Growth and sporulation on microplates were compared at days 4 and 8 with growth and sporulation in 100-ml liquid batch cultures that involved 11 common media. Spore production per unit volume of medium was the same for solid and liquid forms of the media. Qualitative assessment of mycelial growth measured on microplates agreed with that of growth measured in liquid cultures. The microplate assay indicated that V8 juice was the best medium and that an organic content of about 6 mg/ml was optimal for high sporulation and low mycelium production. The assay provides a convenient, rapid, and inexpensive means of screening media for the production of fungal conidia in large numbers, to be used, for example, in biological control programs. PMID:16347310

  17. Cryopreservation of fern spores

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Spore banks for ferns are analogous to seed banks for angiosperms and provide a promising ex situ conservation tool because large quantities of germplasm with high genetic variation can be conserved in a small space with low economic and technical costs. Ferns produce two types of spores with very ...

  18. Fungal microcolonies on indoor surfaces — an explanation for the base-level fungal spore counts in indoor air

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pasanen, A.-L.; Heinonen-Tanski, H.; Kalliokoski, P.; Jantunen, M. J.

    In the subarctic winter, fungal spores are found in indoor air even when outdoor spore levels are very low. The results of this study support an explanation that some indoor airborne fungal spores are derived from unnoticeable fungal microcolonies, which may develop on temporarily wet surfaces. Laboratory experiments on Penicillium verrucosum indicated that the fungus germinated on new wallpaper very quickly (about half an hour) under moist conditions. Hyphal growth and sporulation of the fungus on moist wallpaper occured within one day of incubation. In gravity-settling tape samples from occasionally wet surfaces in a suburban home, large spore aggregates, hyphal fragments with some spores and spores in the germination stage were found, indicating fungal growth. These experiments showed that fungal microcolonies can develop within a week on occasionally wet indoor surfaces.

  19. Abiotic and Biotic Factors Affecting Resting Spore Formation in the Mite Pathogen Neozygites floridana

    PubMed Central

    da Silveira Duarte, Vanessa; Westrum, Karin; Lopes Ribeiro, Ana Elizabete; Guedes Corrêa Gondim Junior, Manoel; Klingen, Ingeborg; Delalibera Júnior, Italo

    2013-01-01

    Neozygites floridana is an obligate mite pathogenic fungus in the Entomophthoromycota. It has been suggested that resting spores of this fungus are produced as a strategy to survive adverse conditions. In the present study, possible mechanisms involved in the regulation of resting spore formation were investigated in the hosts Tetranychus urticae and Tetranychus evansi. Abiotic and biotic factors mimicking conditions that we, based on earlier field studies, thought might induce resting spores in temperate and tropical regions were tested with isolates from Norway and Brazil. A total of 42 combinations of conditions were tested, but only one induced the formation of a high number of resting spores in only one isolate. The Brazilian isolate ESALQ1420 produced a large number of resting spores (51.5%) in T. urticae at a temperature of 11°C, photoperiod of 10L:14D, and light intensity of 42–46 (μmol m−2 s−1) on nonsenescent plants (nondiapausing females). Resting spores of the Brazilian N. floridana isolate ESALQ1421 were found at very low levels (up to 1.0%). Small percentages of T. urticae with resting spores (0–5.0%) were found for the Norwegian isolate NCRI271/04 under the conditions tested. The percentages of resting spores found for the Norwegian isolate in our laboratory studies are similar to the prevalence reported in earlier field studies. PMID:23878542

  20. The SPORES experiment of the EXPOSE-R mission: Bacillus subtilis spores in artificial meteorites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Panitz, Corinna; Horneck, Gerda; Rabbow, Elke; Rettberg, Petra; Moeller, Ralf; Cadet, Jean; Douki, Thierry

    2015-01-01

    The experiment SPORES `Spores in artificial meteorites' was part of European Space Agency's EXPOSE-R mission, which exposed chemical and biological samples for nearly 2 years (March 10, 2009 to February 21, 2011) to outer space, when attached to the outside of the Russian Zvezda module of the International Space Station. The overall objective of the SPORES experiment was to address the question whether the meteorite material offers enough protection against the harsh environment of space for spores to survive a long-term journey in space by experimentally mimicking the hypothetical scenario of Lithopanspermia, which assumes interplanetary transfer of life via impact-ejected rocks. For this purpose, spores of Bacillus subtilis 168 were exposed to selected parameters of outer space (solar ultraviolet (UV) radiation at λ>110 or >200 nm, space vacuum, galactic cosmic radiation and temperature fluctuations) either as a pure spore monolayer or mixed with different concentrations of artificial meteorite powder. Total fluence of solar UV radiation (100-400 nm) during the mission was 859 MJ m-2. After retrieval the viability of the samples was analysed. A Mission Ground Reference program was performed in parallel to the flight experiment. The results of SPORES demonstrate the high inactivating potential of extraterrestrial UV radiation as one of the most harmful factors of space, especially UV at λ>110 nm. The UV-induced inactivation is mainly caused by photodamaging of the DNA, as documented by the identification of the spore photoproduct 5,6-dihydro-5(α-thyminyl)thymine. The data disclose the limits of Lithopanspermia for spores located in the upper layers of impact-ejected rocks due to access of harmful extraterrestrial solar UV radiation.

  1. Malaria mosquitoes attracted by fatal fungus.

    PubMed

    George, Justin; Jenkins, Nina E; Blanford, Simon; Thomas, Matthew B; Baker, Thomas C

    2013-01-01

    Insect-killing fungi such as Beauveria bassiana are being evaluated as possible active ingredients for use in novel biopesticides against mosquito vectors that transmit malaria. Fungal pathogens infect through contact and so applications of spores to surfaces such as walls, nets, or other resting sites provide possible routes to infect mosquitoes in and around domestic dwellings. However, some insects can detect and actively avoid fungal spores to reduce infection risk. If true for mosquitoes, such behavior could render the biopesticide approach ineffective. Here we find that the spores of B. bassiana are highly attractive to females of Anopheles stephensi, a major anopheline mosquito vector of human malaria in Asia. We further find that An. stephensi females are preferentially attracted to dead and dying caterpillars infected with B. bassiana, landing on them and subsequently becoming infected with the fungus. Females are also preferentially attracted to cloth sprayed with oil-formulated B. bassiana spores, with 95% of the attracted females becoming infected after a one-minute visit on the cloth. This is the first report of an insect being attracted to a lethal fungal pathogen. The exact mechanisms involved in this behavior remain unclear. Nonetheless, our results indicate that biopesticidal formulations comprising B. bassiana spores will be conducive to attraction and on-source visitation by malaria vectors. PMID:23658757

  2. Malaria Mosquitoes Attracted by Fatal Fungus

    PubMed Central

    George, Justin; Jenkins, Nina E.; Blanford, Simon; Thomas, Matthew B.; Baker, Thomas C.

    2013-01-01

    Insect-killing fungi such as Beauveria bassiana are being evaluated as possible active ingredients for use in novel biopesticides against mosquito vectors that transmit malaria. Fungal pathogens infect through contact and so applications of spores to surfaces such as walls, nets, or other resting sites provide possible routes to infect mosquitoes in and around domestic dwellings. However, some insects can detect and actively avoid fungal spores to reduce infection risk. If true for mosquitoes, such behavior could render the biopesticide approach ineffective. Here we find that the spores of B. bassiana are highly attractive to females of Anopheles stephensi, a major anopheline mosquito vector of human malaria in Asia. We further find that An. stephensi females are preferentially attracted to dead and dying caterpillars infected with B. bassiana, landing on them and subsequently becoming infected with the fungus. Females are also preferentially attracted to cloth sprayed with oil-formulated B. bassiana spores, with 95% of the attracted females becoming infected after a one-minute visit on the cloth. This is the first report of an insect being attracted to a lethal fungal pathogen. The exact mechanisms involved in this behavior remain unclear. Nonetheless, our results indicate that biopesticidal formulations comprising B. bassiana spores will be conducive to attraction and on-source visitation by malaria vectors. PMID:23658757

  3. Walking and jumping spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marmottant, Philippe

    2012-02-01

    The Equisetum plants, more commonly called ``horsetail,'' emit 50-microns spores that are spherical in shape and present four hygroscopic arms. Under high humidity, the arms are retracted. But under lower humidity, less than 70%, the four arms deploy beautifully. With time-lapse image recordings, we show that under repeated cycles of dry and high humidity, the spores behave as random walkers, since they move by about their size in a different direction at every cycle. The process is apparently stochastic because of the complex shape of the arms and hysteretic friction of the arms on the ground. For some spores, a decrease in humidity level results in very fast jumps, the spores taking off at a typical velocity of a meter per second, as recorded on high-speed camera. With these jumps, they reach centimetric elevations, much larger than their size. The physical mechanism at the root of these ``Levy-flight'' jumps is still under investigation. The walking and jumping phenomena thus provide motility, which we believe is helpful for the understanding of the biological dispersion of the spores. It could also bring biomimetic inspiration to engineer new motile elastic structures.

  4. Ambispora granatensis, a new arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus, associated with Asparagus officinalis in Andalucia (Spain).

    PubMed

    Palenzuela, Javier; Barea, José-Miguel; Ferrol, Nuria; Oehl, Fritz

    2011-01-01

    A new dimorphic fungal species in the arbuscular mycorrhiza-forming Glomeromycota, Ambispora granatensis, was isolated from an agricultural site in the province of Granada (Andalucía, Spain) growing in the rhizosphere of Asparagus officinalis. It was propagated in pot cultures with Trifolium pratense and Sorghum vulgare. The fungus also colonized Ri T-DNA transformed Daucus carota roots but did not form spores in these root organ cultures. The spores of the acaulosporoid morph are 90-150 μm diam and hyaline to white to pale yellow. They have three walls and a papillae-like rough irregular surface on the outer surface of the outer wall. The irregular surface might become difficult to detect within a few hours in lactic acid-based mountings but are clearly visible in water. The structural central wall layer of the outer wall is only 0.8-1.5 μm thick. The glomoid spores are formed singly or in small, loose spore clusters of 2-10 spores. They are hyaline to pale yellow, (25)40-70 μm diam and have a bilayered spore wall without ornamentation. Nearly full length sequences of the 18S and the ITS regions of the ribosomal gene place the new fungus in a separate clade next to Ambispora fennica and Ambispora gerdemannii. The acaulosporoid spores of the new fungus can be distinguished easily from all other spores in genus Ambispora by the conspicuous thin outer wall. PMID:20952800

  5. Clostridium difficile spore biology: sporulation, germination, and spore structural proteins

    PubMed Central

    Paredes-Sabja, Daniel; Shen, Aimee; Sorg, Joseph A.

    2014-01-01

    Clostridium difficile is a Gram-positive, spore-forming obligate anaerobe and a major nosocomial pathogen of world-wide concern. Due to its strict anaerobic requirements, the infectious and transmissible morphotype is the dormant spore. In susceptible patients, C. difficile spores germinate in the colon to form the vegetative cells that initiate Clostridium difficile infections (CDI). During CDI, C. difficile induces a sporulation pathway that produces more spores; these spores are responsible for the persistence of C. difficile in patients and horizontal transmission between hospitalized patients. While important to the C. difficile lifecycle, the C. difficile spore proteome is poorly conserved when compared to members of the Bacillus genus. Further, recent studies have revealed significant differences between C. difficile and B. subtilis at the level of sporulation, germination and spore coat and exosporium morphogenesis. In this review, the regulation of the sporulation and germination pathways and the morphogenesis of the spore coat and exosporium will be discussed. PMID:24814671

  6. Conidial germination in the filamentous fungus Fusarium graminearum.

    PubMed

    Seong, Kye-Yong; Zhao, Xinhua; Xu, Jin-Rong; Güldener, Ulrich; Kistler, H Corby

    2008-04-01

    The ascomycetous fungus Fusarium graminearum is an important plant pathogen causing Fusarium head blight disease of wheat and barley. To understand early developmental stages of this organism, we followed the germination of macroconidia microscopically to understand the timing of key events. These events, recorded after suspension of spores in liquid germination medium, included spore swelling at 2h, germination tube emergence and elongation from conidia at 8h and hyphal branching at 24h. To understand changes in gene expression during these developmental changes, RNA was isolated from spores and used to interrogate the F. graminearum Affymetrix GeneChip. RNAs corresponding to 5813 genes were detected in fresh spores and 5146, 5249 and 5993, respectively, in spores incubated in germination medium after 2, 8 or 24h (P<0.001). Gene expression data were used to predict the cellular and physiological state of each developmental stage for known processes. Predictions were confirmed microscopically for several previously unreported developmental events such as manifestation of peroxisomes in fresh spores and nuclear division resulting in binuclear cells within macroconidia prior to spore germination. Knowledge of stage-specific gene expression and changes in gene expression levels between developmental stages are an important first step to understanding the molecular mechanisms responsible for spore germination and development. PMID:17950638

  7. Detection of presumptive mycoparasites associated with Entomophaga maimaiga resting spores in forest soils.

    PubMed

    Castrillo, Louela A; Hajek, Ann E

    2015-01-01

    The fungal pathogen Entomophaga maimaiga can provide high levels of control of the gypsy moth, Lymantria dispar, an important forest defoliator. This fungus persists in the soil as resting spores and occurs naturally throughout many areas where gypsy moth is established. Studies on the spatial dynamics of gypsy moth population have shown high variability in infection levels, and one possible biological factor could be the variable persistence of E. maimaiga resting spores in the soil due to attacks by mycoparasites. We surveyed presumptive mycoparasites associated with parasitized E. maimaiga resting spores using baiting and molecular techniques and identified an ascomycete (Pochonia sp.) and oomycetes (Pythium spp.). PMID:25433313

  8. Protein Composition of Infectious Spores Reveals Novel Sexual Development and Germination Factors in Cryptococcus

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Mingwei; Hebert, Alexander S.; Coon, Joshua J.; Hull, Christina M.

    2015-01-01

    Spores are an essential cell type required for long-term survival across diverse organisms in the tree of life and are a hallmark of fungal reproduction, persistence, and dispersal. Among human fungal pathogens, spores are presumed infectious particles, but relatively little is known about this robust cell type. Here we used the meningitis-causing fungus Cryptococcus neoformans to determine the roles of spore-resident proteins in spore biology. Using highly sensitive nanoscale liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry, we compared the proteomes of spores and vegetative cells (yeast) and identified eighteen proteins specifically enriched in spores. The genes encoding these proteins were deleted, and the resulting strains were evaluated for discernable phenotypes. We hypothesized that spore-enriched proteins would be preferentially involved in spore-specific processes such as dormancy, stress resistance, and germination. Surprisingly, however, the majority of the mutants harbored defects in sexual development, the process by which spores are formed. One mutant in the cohort was defective in the spore-specific process of germination, showing a delay specifically in the initiation of vegetative growth. Thus, by using this in-depth proteomics approach as a screening tool for cell type-specific proteins and combining it with molecular genetics, we successfully identified the first germination factor in C. neoformans. We also identified numerous proteins with previously unknown functions in both sexual development and spore composition. Our findings provide the first insights into the basic protein components of infectious spores and reveal unexpected molecular connections between infectious particle production and spore composition in a pathogenic eukaryote. PMID:26313153

  9. Main airborne Ascomycota spores: characterization by culture, spore morphology, ribosomal DNA sequences and enzymatic analysis.

    PubMed

    Oliveira, Manuela; Amorim, M Isabel; Ferreira, Elsa; Delgado, Luís; Abreu, Ilda

    2010-04-01

    The aim of this work was to identify the main allergy-related Ascomycetes fungal spores present in the atmosphere of Porto, using different and complementary techniques. The atmospheric sampling, performed in the atmosphere of Porto (Portugal) from August 2006 to July 2008, indicated Cladosporium, Penicillium, Aspergillus and Alternaria as the main fungal spore taxa. Alternaria and Cladosporium peaks were registered during summer. Aspergillus and Penicillium highest values were registered from late winter to early spring. Additionally, the Andersen sampler allowed the culture and isolation of the collected viable spores subsequently used for different identification approaches. The internal-transcribed spacer region of the nuclear ribosomal repeat unit sequences of airborne Ascomycetes fungi isolates revealed 11 taxonomically related fungal species. Among the identified taxa, Penicillum and Aspergillus presented the highest diversity, while only one species of Cladosporium and Alternaria, respectively, were identified. All selected fungal spore taxa possessed phosphatase, esterase, leucine arylamidase and beta-glucosidase enzymatic activity, while none had lipase, cystine arylamidase, trypsin or beta-glucuronidase activity. The association between the spore cell wall morphology, DNA-based techniques and enzymatic activity approaches allowed a more reliable identification procedure of the airborne Ascomycota fungal spores. PMID:20143229

  10. Anthrax Spores under a microscope

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    Anthrax spores are inactive forms of Bacillus anthracis. They can survive for decades inside a spore's tough protective coating; they become active when inhaled by humans. A result of NASA- and industry-sponsored research to develop small greenhouses for space research is the unique AiroCide TiO2 system that kills anthrax spores and other pathogens.

  11. Polymorphic restriction patterns of ribosomal internal transcribed spacers in the biocontrol fungus Puccinia carduorum correlate with weed host origin.

    PubMed Central

    Berthier, Y T; Bruckart, W L; Chaboudez, P; Luster, D G

    1996-01-01

    The internal transcribed spacer (ITS) regions of ribosomal DNA were amplified by PCR and used to develop genetic markers for isolates of Puccinia carduorum being evaluated for biological control of Carduus thoermeri (musk thistle). Unique patterns were produced upon restriction of ITS DNA amplified from four separate Puccinia spp. Restriction patterns of ITS DNA of isolates of P. carduorum from Carduus acanthoides and C. thoermeri were distinct from those of P. carduorum from Carduus tenuiflorus and Carduus pycnocephalus. By this technique, isolates of P. carduorum from four different weed hosts can be differentiated from other Puccinia spp. and separated into two host groups. PMID:8702298

  12. Optical and structural properties of plasma-treated Cordyceps bassiana spores as studied by circular dichroism, absorption, and fluorescence spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Geon Joon; Sim, Geon Bo; Choi, Eun Ha; Kwon, Young-Wan; Kim, Jun Young; Jang, Siun; Kim, Seong Hwan

    2015-01-01

    To understand the killing mechanism of fungal spores by plasma treatment, the optical, structural, and biological properties of the insect pathogenic fungus Cordyceps bassiana spores were studied. A nonthermal atmospheric-pressure plasma jet (APPJ) was used to treat the spores in aqueous solution. Optical emission spectra of the APPJ acquired in air indicated emission peaks corresponding to hydroxyl radicals and atomic oxygen. When the APPJ entered the aqueous solution, additional reactive species were derived from the interaction of plasma radicals with the aqueous solution. Fluorescence and absorption spectroscopy confirmed the generation of hydroxyl radicals and hydrogen peroxide in the plasma-activated water (PAW). Spore counting showed that plasma treatment significantly reduced spore viability. Absorption spectroscopy, circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy, and agarose gel electrophoresis of the DNA extracted from plasma-treated spores showed a reduction in spore DNA content. The magnitude of the dip in the CD spectrum was lower in the plasma-treated spores than in the control, indicating that plasma treatment causes structural modifications and/or damage to cellular components. Tryptophan fluorescence intensity was lower in the plasma-treated spores than in the control, suggesting that plasma treatment modified cell wall proteins. Changes in spore viability and DNA content were attributed to structural modification of the cell wall by reactive species coming from the APPJ and the PAW. Our results provided evidence that the plasma radicals and the derived reactive species play critical roles in fungal spore inactivation.

  13. Optical and structural properties of plasma-treated Cordyceps bassiana spores as studied by circular dichroism, absorption, and fluorescence spectroscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, Geon Joon Sim, Geon Bo; Choi, Eun Ha; Kim, Jun Young; Jang, Siun; Kim, Seong Hwan

    2015-01-14

    To understand the killing mechanism of fungal spores by plasma treatment, the optical, structural, and biological properties of the insect pathogenic fungus Cordyceps bassiana spores were studied. A nonthermal atmospheric-pressure plasma jet (APPJ) was used to treat the spores in aqueous solution. Optical emission spectra of the APPJ acquired in air indicated emission peaks corresponding to hydroxyl radicals and atomic oxygen. When the APPJ entered the aqueous solution, additional reactive species were derived from the interaction of plasma radicals with the aqueous solution. Fluorescence and absorption spectroscopy confirmed the generation of hydroxyl radicals and hydrogen peroxide in the plasma-activated water (PAW). Spore counting showed that plasma treatment significantly reduced spore viability. Absorption spectroscopy, circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy, and agarose gel electrophoresis of the DNA extracted from plasma-treated spores showed a reduction in spore DNA content. The magnitude of the dip in the CD spectrum was lower in the plasma-treated spores than in the control, indicating that plasma treatment causes structural modifications and/or damage to cellular components. Tryptophan fluorescence intensity was lower in the plasma-treated spores than in the control, suggesting that plasma treatment modified cell wall proteins. Changes in spore viability and DNA content were attributed to structural modification of the cell wall by reactive species coming from the APPJ and the PAW. Our results provided evidence that the plasma radicals and the derived reactive species play critical roles in fungal spore inactivation.

  14. Possible Contribution of Blast Spores to the Oxidative Burst in the Infection Droplet on Rice Leaf

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The infection-induced overproduction of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in resistant plants is usually ascribed to the host. Here we tested the possible contribution of the parasite, the rice blast fungus to ROS production. Droplets of spore suspensions or water were kept on rice leaves or on plastic....

  15. Label-Free Detection of Soybean Rust Spores using Photonic Crystal Biosensors

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soybean rust, caused by the fungus Phakopsora pachyrhizi, is one of the most devastating foliar diseases affecting soybeans grown worldwide. The disease was reported for the first time in the United States in 2004. Early spore detection, prior to the appearance of visible symptoms, is critical to ef...

  16. A novel method for standardized application of fungal spore coatings for mosquito exposure bioassays

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Interest in the use of fungal entomopathogens against malaria vectors is growing. Fungal spores infect insects via the cuticle and can be applied directly on the insect to evaluate infectivity. For flying insects such as mosquitoes, however, application of fungal suspensions on resting surfaces is more realistic and representative of field settings. For this type of exposure, it is essential to apply specific amounts of fungal spores homogeneously over a surface for testing the effects of fungal dose and exposure time. Contemporary methods such as spraying or brushing spore suspensions onto substrates do not produce the uniformity and consistency that standardized laboratory assays require. Two novel fungus application methods using equipment developed in the paint industry are presented and compared. Methods Wired, stainless steel K-bars were tested and optimized for coating fungal spore suspensions onto paper substrates. Different solvents and substrates were evaluated. Two types of coating techniques were compared, i.e. manual and automated coating. A standardized bioassay set-up was designed for testing coated spores against malaria mosquitoes. Results K-bar coating provided consistent applications of spore layers onto paper substrates. Viscous Ondina oil formulations were not suitable and significantly reduced spore infectivity. Evaporative Shellsol T solvent dried quickly and resulted in high spore infectivity to mosquitoes. Smooth proofing papers were the most effective substrate and showed higher infectivity than cardboard substrates. Manually and mechanically applied spore coatings showed similar and reproducible effects on mosquito survival. The standardized mosquito exposure bioassay was effective and consistent in measuring effects of fungal dose and exposure time. Conclusions K-bar coating is a simple and consistent method for applying fungal spore suspensions onto paper substrates and can produce coating layers with accurate effective spore

  17. Spore: Spawning Evolutionary Misconceptions?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bean, Thomas E.; Sinatra, Gale M.; Schrader, P. G.

    2010-10-01

    The use of computer simulations as educational tools may afford the means to develop understanding of evolution as a natural, emergent, and decentralized process. However, special consideration of developmental constraints on learning may be necessary when using these technologies. Specifically, the essentialist (biological forms possess an immutable essence), teleological (assignment of purpose to living things and/or parts of living things that may not be purposeful), and intentionality (assumption that events are caused by an intelligent agent) biases may be reinforced through the use of computer simulations, rather than addressed with instruction. We examine the video game Spore for its depiction of evolutionary content and its potential to reinforce these cognitive biases. In particular, we discuss three pedagogical strategies to mitigate weaknesses of Spore and other computer simulations: directly targeting misconceptions through refutational approaches, targeting specific principles of scientific inquiry, and directly addressing issues related to models as cognitive tools.

  18. Levels of H+ and other monovalent cations in dormant and germinating spores of Bacillus megaterium.

    PubMed Central

    Swerdlow, B M; Setlow, B; Setlow, P

    1981-01-01

    Previous investigators using the extent of uptake of the weak base methylamine to measure internal pH have shown that the pH in the core region of dormant spores of Bacillus megaterium is 6.3 to 6.5. Elevation of the internal pH of spores by 1.6 U had no significant effect on their degree of dormancy or their heat or ultraviolet light resistance. Surprisingly, the rate of methylamine uptake into dormant spores was slow (time for half-maximal uptake, 2.5 h at 24 degrees C). Most of the methylamine taken up by dormant spores was rapidly (time for half-maximal uptake, less than 3 min) released during spore germination as the internal pH of spores rose to approximately 7.5. This rise in internal spore pH took place before dipicolinic acid release, was not abolished by inhibition of energy metabolism, and during germination at pH 8.0 was accompanied by a decrease in the pH of the germination medium. Also accompanying the rise in internal spore pH during germination was the release of greater than 80% of the spores K+ and Na+. The K+ was subsequently reabsorbed in an energy-dependent process. These data indicate (i) that between pH 6.2 and 7.8 internal spore pH has little effect on dormant spore properties, (ii) that there is a strong permeability barrier in dormant spores to movement of charged molecules and small uncharged molecules, and (iii) that extremely early in spore germination this permeability barrier is breached, allowing rapid release of internal monovalent cations (H+, Na+, and K+). PMID:6793553

  19. Thermal Spore Exposure Vessels

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Beaudet, Robert A.; Kempf, Michael; Kirschner, Larry

    2006-01-01

    Thermal spore exposure vessels (TSEVs) are laboratory containers designed for use in measuring rates of death or survival of microbial spores at elevated temperatures. A major consideration in the design of a TSEV is minimizing thermal mass in order to minimize heating and cooling times. This is necessary in order to minimize the number of microbes killed before and after exposure at the test temperature, so that the results of the test accurately reflect the effect of the test temperature. A typical prototype TSEV (see figure) includes a flat-bottomed stainless-steel cylinder 4 in. (10.16 cm) long, 0.5 in. (1.27 cm) in diameter, having a wall thickness of 0.010 plus or minus 0.002 in. (0.254 plus or minus 0.051 mm). Microbial spores are deposited in the bottom of the cylinder, then the top of the cylinder is closed with a sterile rubber stopper. Hypodermic needles are used to puncture the rubber stopper to evacuate the inside of the cylinder or to purge the inside of the cylinder with a gas. In a typical application, the inside of the cylinder is purged with dry nitrogen prior to a test. During a test, the lower portion of the cylinder is immersed in a silicone-oil bath that has been preheated to and maintained at the test temperature. Test temperatures up to 220 C have been used. Because the spores are in direct contact with the thin cylinder wall, they quickly become heated to the test temperature.

  20. Dual Beam FIB for Imaging, Nano-Sectioning and Sample Preparation of Spores: Initial Results.

    SciTech Connect

    Wall, M A; Fluss, M J; Schaldach, C

    2004-04-26

    Results from the first use of Focused Ion Beam (FIB) technology to section Bacillus spores at LLNL in a dual-beam (electron and ion) instrument is presented and discussed. With the use of a dual-beam instrument, high resolution imaging of single spores using low voltage scanning electron microscopy followed by FIB sectioning, SEM imaging of internal structure of the same spore is demonstrated to be possible. Additionally, FIB is shown to be able to precisely micro-machine spores thus potentially facilitating micro-scale experiments on single spores.

  1. Spore collection and elimination apparatus and method

    DOEpatents

    Czajkowski, Carl; Warren, Barbara Panessa

    2007-04-03

    The present invention is for a spore collection apparatus and its method of use. The portable spore collection apparatus includes a suction source, a nebulizer, an ionization chamber and a filter canister. The suction source collects the spores from a surface. The spores are activated by heating whereby spore dormancy is broken. Moisture is then applied to the spores to begin germination. The spores are then exposed to alpha particles causing extinction.

  2. Morphological and molecular characterization of Magnaporthe oryzae (fungus) from infected rice leaf samples

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muni, Nurulhidayah Mat; Nadarajah, Kalaivani

    2014-09-01

    Magnaporthe oryzae is a plant-pathogenic fungus that causes a serious disease affecting rice called rice blast. Outbreaks of rice blast have been a threat to the global production of rice. This fungal disease is estimated to cause production losses of US55 million each year in South and Southeast Asia. It has been used as a primary model for elucidating various aspects of the host-pathogen interaction with its host. We have isolated five isolates of Magnaporthe oryzae from diseased leaf samples obtained from the field at Kompleks Latihan MADA, Kedah, Malaysia. We have identified the isolates using morphological and microscopic studies on the fungal spores and the lesions on the diseased leaves. Amplification of the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) was carried out with universal primers ITS1 and ITS4. The sequence of each isolates showed at least 99% nucleotide identity with the corresponding sequence in GenBank for Magnaporthe oryzae.

  3. Clostridium difficile Spore-Macrophage Interactions: Spore Survival

    PubMed Central

    Paredes-Sabja, Daniel; Cofre-Araneda, Glenda; Brito-Silva, Christian; Pizarro-Guajardo, Marjorie; Sarker, Mahfuzur R.

    2012-01-01

    Background Clostridium difficile is the main cause of nosocomial infections including antibiotic associated diarrhea, pseudomembranous colitis and toxic megacolon. During the course of Clostridium difficile infections (CDI), C. difficile undergoes sporulation and releases spores to the colonic environment. The elevated relapse rates of CDI suggest that C. difficile spores has a mechanism(s) to efficiently persist in the host colonic environment. Methodology/Principal Findings In this work, we provide evidence that C. difficile spores are well suited to survive the host’s innate immune system. Electron microscopy results show that C. difficile spores are recognized by discrete patchy regions on the surface of macrophage Raw 264.7 cells, and phagocytosis was actin polymerization dependent. Fluorescence microscopy results show that >80% of Raw 264.7 cells had at least one C. difficile spore adhered, and that ∼60% of C. difficile spores were phagocytosed by Raw 264.7 cells. Strikingly, presence of complement decreased Raw 264.7 cells’ ability to phagocytose C. difficile spores. Due to the ability of C. difficile spores to remain dormant inside Raw 264.7 cells, they were able to survive up to 72 h of macrophage infection. Interestingly, transmission electron micrographs showed interactions between the surface proteins of C. difficile spores and the phagosome membrane of Raw 264.7 cells. In addition, infection of Raw 264.7 cells with C. difficile spores for 48 h produced significant Raw 264.7 cell death as demonstrated by trypan blue assay, and nuclei staining by ethidium homodimer-1. Conclusions/Significance These results demonstrate that despite efficient recognition and phagocytosis of C. difficile spores by Raw 264.7 cells, spores remain dormant and are able to survive and produce cytotoxic effects on Raw 264.7 cells. PMID:22952726

  4. Development, Distribution, and Host Studies of the Fungus Macrobiotophthoira vermicola (Entomophthorales)

    PubMed Central

    Bernard, Ernest C.; Arroyo, Teresa L.

    1990-01-01

    The life cycle and host range of Macrobiotophthora vermicola were studied. Secondary spores produced from forcibly ejected primary spores adhered to the cuticle of Cruznema tripartitum, germinated, and penetrated the cuticle within 30 minutes. New primary spores were produced within 24 hours of initial spore adhesion. In a host range study, species of Rhabditidae, Diplogasteridae, and Aphelenchoidea were hosts, but not species of Bunonematidae, Tripylidae, Cephalobida, or Tylenchina. Numbers of second-stage Meloidogyne incognita juveniles were not decreased when added to soil seeded with infected C. tripartitum. In six Tennessee soybean fields, Macrobiotophthora vermicola was the most commonly encountered nematode-destroying fungus, followed by a sterile, nonseptate fungus and Arthrobotrys conoides. Nematophagous fungi were isolated more frequently from silt loam soils than from clay soils. Addition of C. tripartitum to soil extract plates as a bait nematode did not increase isolations of nematophagous fungi. PMID:19287687

  5. Pathogenicity of entomopathogenic fungus Metarhizium anisopliae (Deuteromycetes) to Ixodes scapularis (Acari: Ixodidae)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zhioua, E.; Browning, M.; Johnson, P.W.; Ginsberg, H.S.; LeBrun, R.A.

    1997-01-01

    The entomopathogenic fungus Metarhizium anisopliae is highly pathogenic to the black-legged tick, Ixodes scapularis. Spore concentrations of 108/ml for engorged larvae and 107/ml for engorged females resulted in 100% tick mortality, 2 wk post-infection. The LC50 value for engorged larvae (concentration to kill 50% of ticks) was 107 spores/ml. Metarhizium anisopliae shows considerable potential as a microbial control agent for the management of Ixodes scapularis.

  6. Development of a user-friendly delivery method for the fungus Metarhizium anisopliac to control the ectoparasitic mite Varroa destructor in honey bee, Apis mellifera, colonies

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A user-friendly method to deliver Metarhizium spores to honey bee colonies for control of Varroa mites was developed and tested. Patty blend formulations protected the fungal spores at brood nest temperatures and served as an improved delivery system of the fungus to bee hives. Field trials conducte...

  7. "Spore" and the Sociocultural Moment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Meyer, W. Max

    2012-01-01

    Analyses of the game "Spore" have centered on the important issues of accuracy of evolution content and engendering interest in science. This paper suggests that examination of the degree of scaffolding necessary to use the game in pedagogy is a missing part of the discussion, and then questions the longevity of the "Spore" discussion relative to…

  8. Cost-effective multiplication of the entomopathogenic fungus Nomuraea rileyi (F) Samson.

    PubMed

    Vimala Devi, P S; Chowdary, A; Prasad, Y G

    2001-01-01

    Cost-effective and rapid multiplication of Nomuraea rileyi is reported. The spore yields in semi-synthetic media were comparable or significantly higher to the standard medium. Maltose and peptone, carbon and nitrogen sources could be effectively replaced with 2% barley extract and 1% soybean extract respectively. However, replacement of yeast extract with dry yeast resulted in lower spore yields. Sporulation of the fungus multiplied on solid substrate was possible only when the bags used had a 0.2 microm filter to facilitate passive exchange of sterile air. A high spore yield of 2.8 x 10(9)/g of substrate was realized on crushed sorghum. PMID:11502062

  9. The development and endophytic nature of the fungus Heteroconium chaetospira.

    PubMed

    Hashiba, Teruyoshi; Narisawa, Kazuhiko

    2005-11-15

    The root endophytic fungus Heteroconium chaetospira was isolated from roots of Chinese cabbage grown in field soil in Japan. This fungus penetrates through the outer epidermal cells of its host, passes into the inner cortex, and grows throughout the cortical cells, including those of the root tip region, without causing apparent pathogenic symptoms. There are no ultrastructural signs of host resistance responses. H. chaetospira has been recovered from 19 plant species in which there was no disruption of host growth. H. chaetospira has a symbiotic association with Chinese cabbage. The fungus provides nitrogen in exchange for carbon. These associations are beneficial for the inoculated plants, as demonstrated by increased growth rate. When used as a preinoculum, H. chaetospira suppresses the incidence of clubroot and Verticillium yellows when the test plant is post-inoculated with the causal agents of these diseases. H. chaetospira is an effective biocontrol agent against clubroot in Chinese cabbage at a low to moderate soil moisture range and a pathogen resting spore density of 10(5) resting spores per gram of soil in situ. Disease caused by Pseudomonas syringae pv. macricola and Alternaria brassicae on leaves can be suppressed by treatment with H. chaetospira. The fungus persists in the roots and induces systemic resistance to the foliar disease. PMID:16168582

  10. Nanoscale structural and mechanical analysis of Bacillus anthracis spores inactivated with rapid dry heating.

    PubMed

    Xing, Yun; Li, Alex; Felker, Daniel L; Burggraf, Larry W

    2014-03-01

    Effective killing of Bacillus anthracis spores is of paramount importance to antibioterrorism, food safety, environmental protection, and the medical device industry. Thus, a deeper understanding of the mechanisms of spore resistance and inactivation is highly desired for developing new strategies or improving the known methods for spore destruction. Previous studies have shown that spore inactivation mechanisms differ considerably depending upon the killing agents, such as heat (wet heat, dry heat), UV, ionizing radiation, and chemicals. It is believed that wet heat kills spores by inactivating critical enzymes, while dry heat kills spores by damaging their DNA. Many studies have focused on the biochemical aspects of spore inactivation by dry heat; few have investigated structural damages and changes in spore mechanical properties. In this study, we have inactivated Bacillus anthracis spores with rapid dry heating and performed nanoscale topographical and mechanical analysis of inactivated spores using atomic force microscopy (AFM). Our results revealed significant changes in spore morphology and nanomechanical properties after heat inactivation. In addition, we also found that these changes were different under different heating conditions that produced similar inactivation probabilities (high temperature for short exposure time versus low temperature for long exposure time). We attributed the differences to the differential thermal and mechanical stresses in the spore. The buildup of internal thermal and mechanical stresses may become prominent only in ultrafast, high-temperature heat inactivation when the experimental timescale is too short for heat-generated vapor to efficiently escape from the spore. Our results thus provide direct, visual evidences of the importance of thermal stresses and heat and mass transfer to spore inactivation by very rapid dry heating. PMID:24375142

  11. Nanoscale Structural and Mechanical Analysis of Bacillus anthracis Spores Inactivated with Rapid Dry Heating

    PubMed Central

    Felker, Daniel L.; Burggraf, Larry W.

    2014-01-01

    Effective killing of Bacillus anthracis spores is of paramount importance to antibioterrorism, food safety, environmental protection, and the medical device industry. Thus, a deeper understanding of the mechanisms of spore resistance and inactivation is highly desired for developing new strategies or improving the known methods for spore destruction. Previous studies have shown that spore inactivation mechanisms differ considerably depending upon the killing agents, such as heat (wet heat, dry heat), UV, ionizing radiation, and chemicals. It is believed that wet heat kills spores by inactivating critical enzymes, while dry heat kills spores by damaging their DNA. Many studies have focused on the biochemical aspects of spore inactivation by dry heat; few have investigated structural damages and changes in spore mechanical properties. In this study, we have inactivated Bacillus anthracis spores with rapid dry heating and performed nanoscale topographical and mechanical analysis of inactivated spores using atomic force microscopy (AFM). Our results revealed significant changes in spore morphology and nanomechanical properties after heat inactivation. In addition, we also found that these changes were different under different heating conditions that produced similar inactivation probabilities (high temperature for short exposure time versus low temperature for long exposure time). We attributed the differences to the differential thermal and mechanical stresses in the spore. The buildup of internal thermal and mechanical stresses may become prominent only in ultrafast, high-temperature heat inactivation when the experimental timescale is too short for heat-generated vapor to efficiently escape from the spore. Our results thus provide direct, visual evidences of the importance of thermal stresses and heat and mass transfer to spore inactivation by very rapid dry heating. PMID:24375142

  12. PERMEABILITY OF BACTERIAL SPORES I.

    PubMed Central

    Black, S. H.; Gerhardt, Philipp

    1961-01-01

    Black, S. H. (The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor) and Philipp Gerhardt. Permeability of bacterial spores. I. Characterization of glucose uptake. J. Bacteriol. 82:743–749. 1961.—The total uptake of glucose by masses of clean, dormant spores was measured to assess their permeability. After correction for intercellular space, packed spores of Bacillus cereus strain terminalis were found in 87 determinations to be permeated by glucose to 40% of their weight. The glucose uptake was relatively independent of environmental variables, and thus was concluded to occur principally through a process of passive diffusion. PMID:13869665

  13. Microbial profile modification with spores

    SciTech Connect

    Bae, J.H.; Chambers, K.T.; Lee, H.O.

    1996-08-01

    To overcome the shortcomings of conventional, near-wellbore profile modification methods, a microbial profile modification (MPM) method with spores was investigated. A halotolerant, spore-forming mesophile was isolated and characterized. These biopolymer-producing spores propagate easily in Berea cores with permeabilities more than about 500 md. With a specifically formulated nutrient package, they are readily germinated and produce biofilm, which reduces the permeability of the rock. The depth of penetration and the degree of permeability reduction can be controlled by varying injection schemes.

  14. Spore and the sociocultural moment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyer, W. Max

    2012-12-01

    Analyses of the game Spore have centered on the important issues of accuracy of evolution content and engendering interest in science. This paper suggests that examination of the degree of scaffolding necessary to use the game in pedagogy is a missing part of the discussion, and then questions the longevity of the Spore discussion relative to the general dissatisfaction with the science presented in the game. The paper proposes that analysis of Spore and other technological tools in science education may be embedded in an historical moment which directs the discussion towards satisfying sociocultural and organizational needs and away from pedagogical ones.

  15. Methyl Iodide Fumigation of Bacillus anthracis Spores.

    PubMed

    Sutton, Mark; Kane, Staci R; Wollard, Jessica R

    2015-09-01

    Fumigation techniques such as chlorine dioxide, vaporous hydrogen peroxide, and paraformaldehyde previously used to decontaminate items, rooms, and buildings following contamination with Bacillus anthracis spores are often incompatible with materials (e.g., porous surfaces, organics, and metals), causing damage or residue. Alternative fumigation with methyl bromide is subject to U.S. and international restrictions due to its ozone-depleting properties. Methyl iodide, however, does not pose a risk to the ozone layer and has previously been demonstrated as a fumigant for fungi, insects, and nematodes. Until now, methyl iodide has not been evaluated against Bacillus anthracis. Sterne strain Bacillus anthracis spores were subjected to methyl iodide fumigation at room temperature and at 550C. Efficacy was measured on a log-scale with a 6-log reduction in CFUs being considered successful compared to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency biocide standard. Such efficacies were obtained after just one hour at 55 °C and after 12 hours at room temperature. No detrimental effects were observed on glassware, PTFE O-rings, or stainless steel. This is the first reported efficacy of methyl iodide in the reduction of Bacillus anthracis spore contamination at ambient and elevated temperatures. PMID:26502561

  16. Spore Coat Architecture of Clostridium novyi-NT spores

    SciTech Connect

    Plomp, M; McCafferey, J; Cheong, I; Huang, X; Bettegowda, C; Kinzler, K; Zhou, S; Vogelstein, B; Malkin, A

    2007-05-07

    Spores of the anaerobic bacterium Clostridium novyi-NT are able to germinate in and destroy hypoxic regions of tumors in experimental animals. Future progress in this area will benefit from a better understanding of the germination and outgrowth processes that are essential for the tumorilytic properties of these spores. Towards this end, we have used both transmission electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy to determine the structure of dormant as well as germinating spores. We found that the spores are surrounded by an amorphous layer intertwined with honeycomb parasporal layers. Moreover, the spore coat layers had apparently self-assembled and this assembly was likely to be governed by crystal growth principles. During germination and outgrowth, the honeycomb layers as well as the underlying spore coat and undercoat layers sequentially dissolved until the vegetative cell was released. In addition to their implications for understanding the biology of C. novyi-NT, these studies document the presence of proteinaceous growth spirals in a biological organism.

  17. TESTING OF THE INSECT PEST CONTROL FUNGUS BEAUVERIA BASSIANA IN GRASS SHRIMP PALAEMONETES PUGIO

    EPA Science Inventory

    Embryos, larvae and adult grass shrimp Palaemonetes pugio were exposed to spores of the insect-control fungus Beauveria bassiana. onidiospores attached to embryos held by gravid females and remained with the egg mass for at least 6 d. In the first experiment where individual deve...

  18. NASA Facts: SporeSat

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Martinez, Andres; Cappuccio, Gelsomina; Tomko, David

    2013-01-01

    SporeSat is an autonomous, free-flying three-unit (3U) spacecraft that will be used to conduct scientific experiments to gain a deeper knowledge of the mechanisms of plant cell gravity sensing. SporeSat is being developed through a partnership between NASAs Ames Research Center and the Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering at Purdue University. Amani Salim and Jenna L. Rickus are the Purdue University Principal Investigators. The SporeSat mission will be flown using a 3U nanosatellite weighing approximately 12 pounds and measuring 14 inches long by 4 inches wide by 4 inches tall. SporeSat will utilize flight-proven spacecraft technologies demonstrated on prior Ames nanosatellite missions such as PharmaSat and OrganismOrganic Exposure to Orbital Stresses (OOREOS) as well as upgrades that increase the hardware integration capabilities with SporeSat science instrumentation. In addition, the SporeSat science payload will serve as a technology platform to evaluate new microsensor technologies for enabling future fundamental biology missions.

  19. Identifying and Inactivating Bacterial Spores

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Newcombe, David; Dekas, Anne; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri

    2009-01-01

    Problems associated with, and new strategies for, inactivating resistant organisms like Bacillus canaveralius (found at Kennedy Space Center during a survey of three NASA cleanrooms) have been defined. Identifying the particular component of the spore that allows its heightened resistance can guide the development of sterilization procedures that are targeted to the specific molecules responsible for resistance, while avoiding using unduly harsh methods that jeopardize equipment. The key element of spore resistance is a multilayered protein shell that encases the spore called the spore coat. The coat of the best-studied spore-forming microbe, B. subtilis, consists of at least 45 proteins, most of which are poorly characterized. Several protective roles for the coat are well characterized including resistance to desiccation, large toxic molecules, ortho-phthalaldehyde, and ultraviolet (UV) radiation. One important long-term specific goal is an improved sterilization procedure that will enable NASA to meet planetary protection requirements without a terminal heat sterilization step. This would support the implementation of planetary protection policies for life-detection missions. Typically, hospitals and government agencies use biological indicators to ensure the quality control of sterilization processes. The spores of B. canaveralius that are more resistant to osmotic stress would serve as a better biological indicator for potential survival than those in use currently.

  20. Effects of meteorological conditions on spore plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burch, M.; Levetin, E.

    2002-05-01

    Fungal spores are an ever-present component of the atmosphere, and have long been known to trigger asthma and hay fever symptoms in sensitive individuals. The atmosphere around Tulsa has been monitored for airborne spores and pollen with Burkard spore traps at several sampling stations. This study involved the examination of the hourly spore concentrations on days that had average daily concentrations near 50,000 spores/m3 or greater. Hourly concentrations of Cladosporium, Alternaria, Epicoccum, Curvularia, Pithomyces, Drechslera, smut spores, ascospores, basidiospores, other, and total spores were determined on 4 days at three sites and then correlated with hourly meteorological data including temperature, rainfall, wind speed, dew point, air pressure, and wind direction. On each of these days there was a spore plume, a phenomenon in which spore concentrations increased dramatically over a very short period of time. Spore plumes generally occurred near midday, and concentrations were seen to increase from lows around 20,000 total spores/m3 to highs over 170,000 total spores/m3 in 2 h. Multiple regression analysis of the data indicated that increases in temperature, dew point, and air pressure correlated with the increase in spore concentrations, but no single weather variable predicted the appearance of a spore plume. The proper combination of changes in these meteorological parameters that result in a spore plume may be due to the changing weather conditions associated with thunderstorms, as on 3 of the 4 days when spore plumes occurred there were thunderstorms later that evening. The occurrence of spore plumes may have clinical significance, because other studies have shown that sensitization to certain spore types can occur during exposure to high spore concentrations.

  1. Some observations concerning microsclerotia and spore production of Mycoleptodiscus terrestris in culture.

    PubMed

    Shearer, Judy F

    2007-01-01

    Some interesting growth characteristics of Mycoleptodiscus terrestris were discovered while evaluating the fungus as a potential bioherbicide for management of the submersed macrophyte, Hydrilla verticillata. Microsclerotia were produced readily in a liquid culture medium containing a basal salts solution supplemented with corn steep liquor powder and glucose. Dried microsclerotia were capable of germinating hyphally within 24 h and sporogenically within 72 h. Initiation of spore production was not dependent on the presence of host plant material or light. PMID:17663126

  2. [Nature and frequency of the existence of mold fungi in garbage cans for biological waste and the resultant airborne spore pollution].

    PubMed

    Weinrich, M; Vissiennon, T; Kliche, R; Schumann, M; Bergmann, A

    1999-12-01

    In organic waste, numerous mold fungi and other microorganisms develop sometimes within a few hours only which decompose the organic material already in the collecting containers generating heat and odor. With regard to the emission of mold fungus spores out of garbage cans for bio-waste and the potential environmental-hygienic danger connected with it, considerable worries have been expressed recently. A wide spectrum of mold fungi can be found in bio-waste in strongly varying concentrations. No noticeable difference could be ascertained between the settlement structure areas and the cities respectively as to the fungus concentration in the bio-waste substrate. A. fumigatus and A. niger can be recommended as leading spores for the behavior of the total concentration of fungi in the bio-waste due to their frequency of detection and their seasonal dynamism. The intensity of the air spore pollution through emission of mold fungus spores correlates closely with the climatic conditions, such as variations of temperature, relative humidity and solar radiation. The airborne release of mold fungus spores out of garbage cans for bio-waste and the formation of a respective exposure connected with it is judged as harmless for healthy persons. Risk patients and persons having a weakened immune system or assumed to have such a one due to an existent basic illness and/or other reasons should avoid any handling of bio-waste as well as any other waste if possible. PMID:10638030

  3. UV-Photobiology of bacterial spores in space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horneck, Gerda; Douki, Thierry; Cadet, Jean; Panitz, Corinna; Rabbow, Elke; Moeller, Ralf; Rettberg, Petra

    The vast, cold and radiation filled regimes of outer space present on one hand an environmental challenge for any form of terrestrial life; on the other hand they constitute a unique platform for astrobiology research. Major environmental parameters of space that are of interest to astrobiology are (i) space vacuum, (ii) solar electromagnetic radiation, above all the high energy UV radiation, (iii) galactic cosmic radiation, (iv) extreme temperature fluctuations, and (v) microgravity. Exposure facilities on board of Earth orbiting satellites and the International Space Station (ISS) have provided unique opportunities to study biological and chemical processes in response to those parameters directly in space. Endospores of Bacillus spp., especially B. subtilis, characterized by an extreme resistance to environmental insults and an incredible longevity have served as experimental models in studies on (i) the role of the ozone layer in protecting our biosphere; (ii) the likelihood of the interplanetary transfer of life via meteorites, i.e. the hypothesis of lithopanspermia; (iii) the habitability of Mars; (iv) the need for planetary protection measures; and (v) the molecular mechanisms underlying the extreme lethality of solar extraterrestrial UV-radiation. Role of the ozone layer in protecting our biosphere: Using solar extraterrestrial UV radiation and a set of optical filters, the terrestrial UV radiation climate at different ozone concentration was simulated and the biologically effective irradiance was measured with B. subtilis spores immobilized in a biofilm. With decreasing (simulated) ozone concentrations the biologically effective solar irradiance strongly increased by nearly 1000-fold for early Earth conditions before the ozone layer was built up. Likelihood of lithopanspermia: In an impact-driven scenario of lithopanspermia, rock-dwelling microorganisms - after being ejected from a planet - may wander through space for extended periods of time before being

  4. Measuring Total and Germinable Spore Populations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Noell, A.C.; Yung, P.T.; Yang, W.; Lee, C.; Ponce, A.

    2011-01-01

    It has been shown that bacterial endospores can be enumerated using a microscopy based assay that images the luminescent halos from terbium ions bound to dipicolinic acid, a spore specific chemical marker released upon spore germination. Further development of the instrument has simplified it towards automation while at the same time improving image quality. Enumeration of total spore populations has also been developed allowing measurement of the percentage of viable spores in any population by comparing the germinable/culturable spores to the total. Percentage viability will allow a more quantitative comparison of the ability of spores to survive across a wide range of extreme environments.

  5. Measuring Total and Germinable Spore Populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Noell, A. C.; Yung, P. T.; Yang, W.; Ponce, A.; Lee, C.

    2011-10-01

    It has been shown that bacterial endospores can be enumerated using a microscopy based assay that images the luminescent halos from terbium ions bound to dipicolinic acid, a spore specific chemical marker released upon spore germination. Further development of the instrument has simplified it towards automation while at the same time improving image quality. Enumeration of total spore populations has also been developed allowing measurement of the percentage of viable spores in any population by comparing the germinable/culturable spores to the total. Percentage viability will allow a more quantitative comparison of the ability of spores to survive across a wide range of extreme environments.

  6. Fungal spores: hazardous to health?

    PubMed Central

    Sorenson, W G

    1999-01-01

    Fungi have long been known to affect human well being in various ways, including disease of essential crop plants, decay of stored foods with possible concomitant production of mycotoxins, superficial and systemic infection of human tissues, and disease associated with immune stimulation such as hypersensitivity pneumonitis and toxic pneumonitis. The spores of a large number of important fungi are less than 5 microm aerodynamic diameter, and therefore are able to enter the lungs. They also may contain significant amounts of mycotoxins. Diseases associated with inhalation of fungal spores include toxic pneumonitis, hypersensitivity pneumonitis, tremors, chronic fatigue syndrome, kidney failure, and cancer. PMID:10423389

  7. Fighting Ebola with novel spore decontamination technologies for the military

    PubMed Central

    Doona, Christopher J.; Feeherry, Florence E.; Kustin, Kenneth; Olinger, Gene G.; Setlow, Peter; Malkin, Alexander J.; Leighton, Terrance

    2015-01-01

    Recently, global public health organizations such as Doctors without Borders (MSF), the World Health Organization (WHO), Public Health Canada, National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the U.S. government developed and deployed Field Decontamination Kits (FDKs), a novel, lightweight, compact, reusable decontamination technology to sterilize Ebola-contaminated medical devices at remote clinical sites lacking infra-structure in crisis-stricken regions of West Africa (medical waste materials are placed in bags and burned). The basis for effectuating sterilization with FDKs is chlorine dioxide (ClO2) produced from a patented invention developed by researchers at the US Army Natick Soldier RD&E Center (NSRDEC) and commercialized as a dry mixed-chemical for bacterial spore decontamination. In fact, the NSRDEC research scientists developed an ensemble of ClO2 technologies designed for different applications in decontaminating fresh produce; food contact and handling surfaces; personal protective equipment; textiles used in clothing, uniforms, tents, and shelters; graywater recycling; airplanes; surgical instruments; and hard surfaces in latrines, laundries, and deployable medical facilities. These examples demonstrate the far-reaching impact, adaptability, and versatility of these innovative technologies. We present herein the unique attributes of NSRDEC’s novel decontamination technologies and a Case Study of the development of FDKs that were deployed in West Africa by international public health organizations to sterilize Ebola-contaminated medical equipment. FDKs use bacterial spores as indicators of sterility. We review the properties and structures of spores and the mechanisms of bacterial spore inactivation by ClO2. We also review mechanisms of bacterial spore inactivation by novel, emerging, and established non-thermal technologies for food preservation, such as high pressure processing, irradiation, cold plasma, and chemical sanitizers, using an array of Bacillus

  8. Fighting Ebola with novel spore decontamination technologies for the military

    SciTech Connect

    Doona, Christopher J.; Feeherry, Florence E.; Kustin, Kenneth; Olinger, Gene G.; Setlow, Peter; Malkin, Alexander J.; Leighton, Terrance

    2015-08-12

    Recently, global public health organizations such as Doctors without Borders (MSF), the World Health Organization (WHO), Public Health Canada, National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the U.S. government developed and deployed Field Decontamination Kits (FDKs), a novel, lightweight, compact, reusable decontamination technology to sterilize Ebola-contaminated medical devices at remote clinical sites lacking infra-structure in crisis-stricken regions of West Africa (medical waste materials are placed in bags and burned). The basis for effectuating sterilization with FDKs is chlorine dioxide (ClO2) produced from a patented invention developed by researchers at the US Army Natick Soldier RD&E Center (NSRDEC) and commercialized as a dry mixed-chemical for bacterial spore decontamination. In fact, the NSRDEC research scientists developed an ensemble of ClO2 technologies designed for different applications in decontaminating fresh produce; food contact and handling surfaces; personal protective equipment; textiles used in clothing, uniforms, tents, and shelters; graywater recycling; airplanes; surgical instruments; and hard surfaces in latrines, laundries, and deployable medical facilities. These examples demonstrate the far-reaching impact, adaptability, and versatility of these innovative technologies. Here, we present the unique attributes of NSRDEC’s novel decontamination technologies and a Case Study of the development of FDKs that were deployed in West Africa by international public health organizations to sterilize Ebola-contaminated medical equipment. FDKs use bacterial spores as indicators of sterility. We review the properties and structures of spores and the mechanisms of bacterial spore inactivation by ClO2. We also review mechanisms of bacterial spore inactivation by novel, emerging, and established non-thermal technologies for food preservation, such as high pressure processing, irradiation, cold plasma, and chemical

  9. Fighting Ebola with novel spore decontamination technologies for the military

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Doona, Christopher J.; Feeherry, Florence E.; Kustin, Kenneth; Olinger, Gene G.; Setlow, Peter; Malkin, Alexander J.; Leighton, Terrance

    2015-08-12

    Recently, global public health organizations such as Doctors without Borders (MSF), the World Health Organization (WHO), Public Health Canada, National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the U.S. government developed and deployed Field Decontamination Kits (FDKs), a novel, lightweight, compact, reusable decontamination technology to sterilize Ebola-contaminated medical devices at remote clinical sites lacking infra-structure in crisis-stricken regions of West Africa (medical waste materials are placed in bags and burned). The basis for effectuating sterilization with FDKs is chlorine dioxide (ClO2) produced from a patented invention developed by researchers at the US Army Natick Soldier RD&E Center (NSRDEC) and commercialized as amore » dry mixed-chemical for bacterial spore decontamination. In fact, the NSRDEC research scientists developed an ensemble of ClO2 technologies designed for different applications in decontaminating fresh produce; food contact and handling surfaces; personal protective equipment; textiles used in clothing, uniforms, tents, and shelters; graywater recycling; airplanes; surgical instruments; and hard surfaces in latrines, laundries, and deployable medical facilities. These examples demonstrate the far-reaching impact, adaptability, and versatility of these innovative technologies. Here, we present the unique attributes of NSRDEC’s novel decontamination technologies and a Case Study of the development of FDKs that were deployed in West Africa by international public health organizations to sterilize Ebola-contaminated medical equipment. FDKs use bacterial spores as indicators of sterility. We review the properties and structures of spores and the mechanisms of bacterial spore inactivation by ClO2. We also review mechanisms of bacterial spore inactivation by novel, emerging, and established non-thermal technologies for food preservation, such as high pressure processing, irradiation, cold plasma, and chemical sanitizers, using an array of

  10. Fighting Ebola with novel spore decontamination technologies for the military.

    PubMed

    Doona, Christopher J; Feeherry, Florence E; Kustin, Kenneth; Olinger, Gene G; Setlow, Peter; Malkin, Alexander J; Leighton, Terrance

    2015-01-01

    Recently, global public health organizations such as Doctors without Borders (MSF), the World Health Organization (WHO), Public Health Canada, National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the U.S. government developed and deployed Field Decontamination Kits (FDKs), a novel, lightweight, compact, reusable decontamination technology to sterilize Ebola-contaminated medical devices at remote clinical sites lacking infra-structure in crisis-stricken regions of West Africa (medical waste materials are placed in bags and burned). The basis for effectuating sterilization with FDKs is chlorine dioxide (ClO2) produced from a patented invention developed by researchers at the US Army Natick Soldier RD&E Center (NSRDEC) and commercialized as a dry mixed-chemical for bacterial spore decontamination. In fact, the NSRDEC research scientists developed an ensemble of ClO2 technologies designed for different applications in decontaminating fresh produce; food contact and handling surfaces; personal protective equipment; textiles used in clothing, uniforms, tents, and shelters; graywater recycling; airplanes; surgical instruments; and hard surfaces in latrines, laundries, and deployable medical facilities. These examples demonstrate the far-reaching impact, adaptability, and versatility of these innovative technologies. We present herein the unique attributes of NSRDEC's novel decontamination technologies and a Case Study of the development of FDKs that were deployed in West Africa by international public health organizations to sterilize Ebola-contaminated medical equipment. FDKs use bacterial spores as indicators of sterility. We review the properties and structures of spores and the mechanisms of bacterial spore inactivation by ClO2. We also review mechanisms of bacterial spore inactivation by novel, emerging, and established non-thermal technologies for food preservation, such as high pressure processing, irradiation, cold plasma, and chemical sanitizers, using an array of Bacillus

  11. 1-Octanol, a self-inhibitor of spore germination in Penicillium camemberti.

    PubMed

    Gillot, Guillaume; Decourcelle, Nicolas; Dauer, Gaëlle; Barbier, Georges; Coton, Emmanuel; Delmail, David; Mounier, Jérôme

    2016-08-01

    Penicillium camemberti is a technologically relevant fungus used to manufacture mold-ripened cheeses. This fungal species produces many volatile organic compounds (VOCs) including ammonia, methyl-ketones, alcohols and esters. Although it is now well known that VOCs can act as signaling molecules, nothing is known about their involvement in P. camemberti lifecycle. In this study, spore germination was shown to be self-regulated by quorum sensing in P. camemberti. This phenomenon, also called "crowding effect", is population-dependent (i.e. observed at high population densities). After determining the volatile nature of the compounds involved in this process, 1-octanol was identified as the main compound produced at high-spore density using GC-MS. Its inhibitory effect was confirmed in vitro and 3 mM 1-octanol totally inhibited spore germination while 100 μM only transiently inhibited spore germination. This is the first time that self-inhibition of spore germination is demonstrated in P. camemberti. The obtained results provide interesting perspectives for better control of mold-ripened cheese processes. PMID:27052695

  12. Identification of Bacterial Spores using Statistical Analysis of Fourier Transform Infrared Photoacoustic Spectroscopy Data

    SciTech Connect

    Thompson, Sandra E.; Foster, Nancy S.; Johnson, Timothy J.; Valentine, Nancy B.; Amonette, James E.

    2003-08-28

    Fourier Transform Infrared Photoacoustic Spectroscopy (FTIR-PAS) has been applied for the first time to the identification and speciation of bacterial spores. With minimal preparation the spores were deposited into the photoacoustic sample cup and their spectra recorded. A total of 40 different samples of 5 different strains of Bacillus spores were analyzed: Bacillus subtilis ATCC 49760, Bacillus atrophaeus ATCC 49337, Bacillus subtilis 6051, Bacillus thuringiensis ssp. kurstaki, and Bacillus globigii Dugway. The statistical methods used included principal-component analysis (PCA), classification and regression trees (CART), and Mahalanobis-distance calculations. Internal cross-validation studies successfully classify the spores according to their bacterial strain in 38 of 40 cases (95%) and 36 of 40 (90%) in cross-validation. Analysis of fifteen blind samples, which included library and other spores, and nonbacterial materials, resulted in correct strain classification the blind samples that were members of the library and correct rejection of the nonbacterial samples.

  13. Optimizing Bacillus subtilis spore isolation and quantifying spore harvest purity.

    PubMed

    Harrold, Zoë R; Hertel, Mikaela R; Gorman-Lewis, Drew

    2011-12-01

    Investigating the biochemistry, resilience and environmental interactions of bacterial endospores often requires a pure endospore biomass free of vegetative cells. Numerous endospore isolation methods, however, neglect to quantify the purity of the final endospore biomass. To ensure low vegetative cell contamination we developed a quality control technique that enables rapid quantification of endospore harvest purity. This method quantifies spore purity using bright-field and fluorescence microscopy imaging in conjunction with automated cell counting software. We applied this method to Bacillus subtilis endospore harvests isolated using a two-phase separation method that utilizes mild chemicals. The average spore purity of twenty-two harvests was 88±11% (error is 1σ) with a median value of 93%. A spearman coefficient of 0.97 correlating automated and manual bacterial counts confirms the accuracy of software generated data. PMID:21989299

  14. Isolating and Purifying Clostridium difficile Spores.

    PubMed

    Edwards, Adrianne N; McBride, Shonna M

    2016-01-01

    The ability for the obligate anaerobe, Clostridium difficile to form a metabolically dormant spore is critical for the survival of this organism outside of the host. This spore form is resistant to a myriad of environmental stresses, including heat, desiccation, and exposure to disinfectants and antimicrobials. These intrinsic properties of spores allow C. difficile to survive long-term in an oxygenated environment, to be easily transmitted from host-to-host, and to persist within the host following antibiotic treatment. Because of the importance of the spore form to the C. difficile life cycle and treatment and prevention of C. difficile infection (CDI), the isolation and purification of spores are necessary to study the mechanisms of sporulation and germination, investigate spore properties and resistances, and for use in animal models of CDI. Here we provide basic protocols, in vitro growth conditions, and additional considerations for purifying C. difficile spores for a variety of downstream applications. PMID:27507337

  15. Effect of the osmotic conditions during sporulation on the subsequent resistance of bacterial spores.

    PubMed

    Nguyen Thi Minh, Hue; Guyot, Stéphane; Perrier-Cornet, Jean-Marie; Gervais, Patrick

    2008-08-01

    The causes of Bacillus spore resistance remain unclear. Many structures including a highly compact envelope, low hydration of the protoplast, high concentrations of Ca-chelated dipicolinic acid, and the presence of small acid-soluble spore proteins seem to contribute to resistance. To evaluate the role of internal protoplast composition and hydration, spores of Bacillus subtilis were produced at different osmotic pressures corresponding to water activities of 0.993 (standard), 0.970, and 0.950, using the two depressors (glycerol or NaCl). Sporulation of Bacillus subtilis was slower and reduced in quantity when the water activity was low, taking 4, 10, and 17 days for 0.993, 0.970, and 0.950 water activity, respectively. The spores produced at lower water activity were smaller and could germinate on agar medium at lower water activity than on standard spores. They were also more sensitive to heat (97 degrees C for 5-60 min) than the standard spores but their resistance to high hydrostatic pressure (350 MPa at 40 degrees C for 20 min to 4 h) was not altered. Our results showed that the water activity of the sporulation medium significantly affects spore properties including size, germination capacity, and resistance to heat but has no role in bacterial spore resistance to high hydrostatic pressure. PMID:18506440

  16. High gas pressure: an innovative method for the inactivation of dried bacterial spores.

    PubMed

    Colas de la Noue, A; Espinasse, V; Perrier-Cornet, J-M; Gervais, P

    2012-08-01

    In this article, an original non-thermal process to inactivate dehydrated bacterial spores is described. The use of gases such as nitrogen or argon as transmission media under high isostatic pressure led to an inactivation of over 2 logs CFU/g of Bacillus subtilis spores at 430 MPa, room temperature, for a 1 min treatment. A major requirement for the effectiveness of the process resided in the highly dehydrated state of the spores. Only a water activity below 0.3 led to substantial inactivation. The solubility of the gas in the lipid components of the spore and its diffusion properties was essential to inactivation. The main phenomenon involved seems to be the sorption of the gas under pressure by the spores' structures such as residual pores and plasma membranes, followed by a sudden drop in pressure. Observation by phase-contrast microscopy suggests that internal structures have been affected by the treatment. Some parallels with polymer permeability to gas and rigidity at various water activities offer a few clues about the behavior of the outer layers of spores in response to this parameter and provide a good explanation for the sensitivity of spores to high gas pressure discharge at low hydration levels. Specificity of microorganisms such as size, organization, and composition could help in understanding the differences between spores and yeast regarding the parameters required for inactivation, such as pressure or maintenance time. PMID:22362566

  17. Ultraviolet-Resistant Bacterial Spores

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Venkateswaran, Kasthuri; Newcombe, David; LaDuc, Myron T.; Osman, Shariff R.

    2007-01-01

    A document summarizes a study in which it was found that spores of the SAFR-032 strain of Bacillus pumilus can survive doses of ultraviolet (UV) radiation, radiation, and hydrogen peroxide in proportions much greater than those of other bacteria. The study was part of a continuing effort to understand the survivability of bacteria under harsh conditions and develop means of sterilizing spacecraft to prevent biocontamination of Mars that could interfere with the search for life there.

  18. Reaerosolization of Fluidized Spores in Ventilation Systems▿

    PubMed Central

    Krauter, Paula; Biermann, Arthur

    2007-01-01

    This project examined dry, fluidized spore reaerosolization in a heating, ventilating, and air conditioning duct system. Experiments using spores of Bacillus atrophaeus, a nonpathogenic surrogate for Bacillus anthracis, were conducted to delineate the extent of spore reaerosolization behavior under normal indoor airflow conditions. Short-term (five air-volume exchanges), long-term (up to 21,000 air-volume exchanges), and cycled (on-off) reaerosolization tests were conducted using two common duct materials. Spores were released into the test apparatus in turbulent airflow (Reynolds number, 26,000). After the initial pulse of spores (approximately 1010 to 1011 viable spores) was released, high-efficiency particulate air filters were added to the air intake. Airflow was again used to perturb the spores that had previously deposited onto the duct. Resuspension rates on both steel and plastic duct materials were between 10−3 and 10−5 per second, which decreased to 10 times less than initial rates within 30 min. Pulsed flow caused an initial spike in spore resuspension concentration that rapidly decreased. The resuspension rates were greater than those predicted by resuspension models for contamination in the environment, a result attributed to surface roughness differences. There was no difference between spore reaerosolization from metal and that from plastic duct surfaces over 5 hours of constant airflow. The spores that deposited onto the duct remained a persistent source of contamination over a period of several hours. PMID:17293522

  19. The walk and jump of Equisetum spores.

    PubMed

    Marmottant, Philippe; Ponomarenko, Alexandre; Bienaimé, Diane

    2013-11-01

    Equisetum plants (horsetails) reproduce by producing tiny spherical spores that are typically 50 µm in diameter. The spores have four elaters, which are flexible ribbon-like appendages that are initially wrapped around the main spore body and that deploy upon drying or fold back in humid air. If elaters are believed to help dispersal, the exact mechanism for spore motion remains unclear in the literature. In this manuscript, we present observations of the 'walks' and 'jumps' of Equisetum spores, which are novel types of spore locomotion mechanisms compared to the ones of other spores. Walks are driven by humidity cycles, each cycle inducing a small step in a random direction. The dispersal range from the walk is limited, but the walk provides key steps to either exit the sporangium or to reorient and refold. Jumps occur when the spores suddenly thrust themselves after being tightly folded. They result in a very efficient dispersal: even spores jumping from the ground can catch the wind again, whereas non-jumping spores stay on the ground. The understanding of these movements, which are solely driven by humidity variations, conveys biomimetic inspiration for a new class of self-propelled objects. PMID:24026816

  20. Differential Inactivation of Fungal Spores in Water and on Seeds by Ozone and Arc Discharge Plasma.

    PubMed

    Kang, Min Ho; Pengkit, Anchalee; Choi, Kihong; Jeon, Seong Sil; Choi, Hyo Won; Shin, Dong Bum; Choi, Eun Ha; Uhm, Han Sup; Park, Gyungsoon

    2015-01-01

    Seed sterilization is essential for preventing seed borne fungal diseases. Sterilization tools based on physical technologies have recently received much attention. However, available information is very limited in terms of efficiency, safety, and mode of action. In this study, we have examined antifungal activity of ozone and arc discharge plasma, potential tools for seed sterilization. In our results, ozone and arc discharge plasma have shown differential antifungal effects, depending on the environment associated with fungal spores (freely submerged in water or infected seeds). Ozone inactivates Fusarium fujikuroi (fungus causing rice bakanae disease) spores submerged in water more efficiently than arc discharge plasma. However, fungal spores associated with or infecting rice seeds are more effectively deactivated by arc discharge plasma. ROS generated in water by ozone may function as a powerful fungicidal factor. On the other hand, shockwave generated from arc discharge plasma may have greatly contributed to antifungal effects on fungus associated with rice seeds. In support of this notion, addition of ultrasonic wave in ozone generating water has greatly increased the efficiency of seed disinfection. PMID:26406468

  1. Differential Inactivation of Fungal Spores in Water and on Seeds by Ozone and Arc Discharge Plasma

    PubMed Central

    Kang, Min Ho; Pengkit, Anchalee; Choi, Kihong; Jeon, Seong Sil; Choi, Hyo Won; Shin, Dong Bum; Choi, Eun Ha; Uhm, Han Sup; Park, Gyungsoon

    2015-01-01

    Seed sterilization is essential for preventing seed borne fungal diseases. Sterilization tools based on physical technologies have recently received much attention. However, available information is very limited in terms of efficiency, safety, and mode of action. In this study, we have examined antifungal activity of ozone and arc discharge plasma, potential tools for seed sterilization. In our results, ozone and arc discharge plasma have shown differential antifungal effects, depending on the environment associated with fungal spores (freely submerged in water or infected seeds). Ozone inactivates Fusarium fujikuroi (fungus causing rice bakanae disease) spores submerged in water more efficiently than arc discharge plasma. However, fungal spores associated with or infecting rice seeds are more effectively deactivated by arc discharge plasma. ROS generated in water by ozone may function as a powerful fungicidal factor. On the other hand, shockwave generated from arc discharge plasma may have greatly contributed to antifungal effects on fungus associated with rice seeds. In support of this notion, addition of ultrasonic wave in ozone generating water has greatly increased the efficiency of seed disinfection. PMID:26406468

  2. Use of microbial spores as a biocatalyst

    SciTech Connect

    Murata, Kousaku . Research Inst. for Food Science)

    1993-01-01

    Endospores of a bacterium Bacillus subtilis and ascospores of a yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae contained almost all the activities for the same enzymes as vegetative cells. The biotechnological potential of spores was studied by selecting adenosine 5[prime]-triphosphatase and alkaline phosphatase in bacterial and yeast spores, respectively, as model enzymes. The activity of both enzymes was efficiently expressed when the spores were treated by physical (sonication or electric field pulse) and chemical (organic solvents or detergents) methods. The yeast spores were immobilized in polyacrylamide gel without any appreciable loss of activity. The immobilized spores were packed in a column and used successfully for the continuous reactions of alkaline phosphatase and glyoxalase I. The microbial spores were confirmed to be promising as a biocatalyst for the production of useful chemicals in bioreactor systems.

  3. On the fate of ingested Bacillus spores.

    PubMed

    Spinosa, M R; Braccini, T; Ricca, E; De Felice, M; Morelli, L; Pozzi, G; Oggioni, M R

    2000-06-01

    Spores of various Bacillus species, including B. subtilis, B. cereus and B. clausii, are used as probiotics, although they are generally absent from the normal microflora of man. We used two nonpathogenic Bacillus species, B. subtilis and B. clausii, to follow the fate of spores inoculated intragastrically in mice. We did not find detectable amounts of vegetative cells in intestinal samples, probably because of high toxicity of the conjugated bile salt taurodeoxycholic acid against Bacillus species. Both spores and cells were detected in the lymph nodes and spleen of one mouse. Our results indicate that Bacillus is present in the intestinal tract solely as spores and that nonpathogenic Bacillus spores may germinate in lymphoid organs, a finding reminiscent of B. anthracis germination in macrophages. These results indicate that any claimed probiotic effect of B. subtilis should be due to spores or, alternatively, to vegetative growth outside the intestine. PMID:10919516

  4. Identification of a Nosema bombycis (Microsporidia) spore wall protein corresponding to spore phagocytosis.

    PubMed

    Cai, Shunfeng; Lu, Xingmeng; Qiu, Haihong; Li, Mingqian; Feng, Zhenzhen

    2011-08-01

    Life-cycle stages of the microsporidia Nosema bombycis, the pathogen causing silkworm pebrine, were separated and purified by an improved method of Percoll-gradient centrifugation. Soluble protein fractions of late sporoblasts (spore precursor cells) and mature spores were analysed by two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (2D-PAGE). Protein spots were recovered from gels and analysed by mass spectrometry. The most abundant differential protein spot was identified by database search to be a hypothetical spore wall protein. Using immunoelectron microscopy, we demonstrated that HSWP5 is localized to the exospore of mature spores and renamed it as spore wall protein 5 (NbSWP5). Further spore phagocytosis assays indicated that NbSWP5 can protect spores from phagocytic uptake by cultured insect cells. This spore wall protein may function both for structural integrity and in modulating host cell invasion. PMID:21756420

  5. Inducing and Quantifying Clostridium difficile Spore Formation.

    PubMed

    Shen, Aimee; Fimlaid, Kelly A; Pishdadian, Keyan

    2016-01-01

    The Gram-positive nosocomial pathogen Clostridium difficile induces sporulation during growth in the gastrointestinal tract. Sporulation is necessary for this obligate anaerobe to form metabolically dormant spores that can resist antibiotic treatment, survive exit from the mammalian host, and transmit C. difficile infections. In this chapter, we describe a method for inducing C. difficile sporulation in vitro. This method can be used to study sporulation and maximize spore purification yields for a number of C. difficile strain backgrounds. We also describe procedures for visualizing spore formation using phase-contrast microscopy and for quantifying the efficiency of sporulation using heat resistance as a measure of functional spore formation. PMID:27507338

  6. Anthrax Toxins in Context of Bacillus anthracis Spores and Spore Germination

    PubMed Central

    Cote, Christopher K.; Welkos, Susan L.

    2015-01-01

    The interaction of anthrax toxin or toxin components with B. anthracis spores has been demonstrated. Germinating spores can produce significant amounts of toxin components very soon after the initiation of germination. In this review, we will summarize the work performed that has led to our understanding of toxin and spore interactions and discuss the complexities associated with these interactions. PMID:26287244

  7. Distinction of broken cellular wall Ganoderma lucidum spores and G. lucidum spores using FTIR microspectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Xianliang; Liu, Xingcun; Sheng, Daping; Huang, Dake; Li, Weizu; Wang, Xin

    2012-11-01

    In this paper, FTIR microspectroscopy was used to identify broken cellular wall Ganoderma lucidum spores and G. lucidum spores. For IR spectra, broken cellular wall G. lucidum spores and G. lucidum spores were mainly different in the regions of 3000-2800, 1660-1600, 1400-1200 and 1100-1000 cm-1. For curve fitting, the results showed the differences in the protein secondary structures and the polysaccharide structures/content between broken cellular wall G. lucidum spores and G. lucidum spores. Moreover, the value of A1078/A1741 might be a potentially useful factor to distinguish broken cellular wall G. lucidum spores from G. lucidum spores. Additionally, FTIR microspectroscopy could identify broken cellular wall G. lucidum spores and G. lucidum spores accurately when it was combined with hierarchical cluster analysis. The result suggests FTIR microspectroscopy is very simple and efficient for distinction of broken cellular wall G. lucidum spores and G. lucidum spores. The result also indicates FTIR microspectroscopy may be useful for TCM identification.

  8. Electron Beam Irradiation Dose Dependently Damages the Bacillus Spore Coat and Spore Membrane

    PubMed Central

    Fiester, S. E.; Helfinstine, S. L.; Redfearn, J. C.; Uribe, R. M.; Woolverton, C. J.

    2012-01-01

    Effective control of spore-forming bacilli begs suitable physical or chemical methods. While many spore inactivation techniques have been proven effective, electron beam (EB) irradiation has been frequently chosen to eradicate Bacillus spores. Despite its widespread use, there are limited data evaluating the effects of EB irradiation on Bacillus spores. To study this, B. atrophaeus spores were purified, suspended in sterile, distilled water, and irradiated with EB (up to 20 kGy). Irradiated spores were found (1) to contain structural damage as observed by electron microscopy, (2) to have spilled cytoplasmic contents as measured by spectroscopy, (3) to have reduced membrane integrity as determined by fluorescence cytometry, and (4) to have fragmented genomic DNA as measured by gel electrophoresis, all in a dose-dependent manner. Additionally, cytometry data reveal decreased spore size, increased surface alterations, and increased uptake of propidium iodide, with increasing EB dose, suggesting spore coat alterations with membrane damage, prior to loss of spore viability. The present study suggests that EB irradiation of spores in water results in substantial structural damage of the spore coat and inner membrane, and that, along with DNA fragmentation, results in dose-dependent spore inactivation. PMID:22319535

  9. The Glyoxylate Cycle in an Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungus. Carbon Flux and Gene Expression

    PubMed Central

    Lammers, Peter J.; Jun, Jeongwon; Abubaker, Jehad; Arreola, Raul; Gopalan, Anjali; Bago, Berta; Hernandez-Sebastia, Cinta; Allen, James W.; Douds, David D.; Pfeffer, Philip E.; Shachar-Hill, Yair

    2001-01-01

    The arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) symbiosis is responsible for huge fluxes of photosynthetically fixed carbon from plants to the soil. Lipid, which is the dominant form of stored carbon in the fungal partner and which fuels spore germination, is made by the fungus within the root and is exported to the extraradical mycelium. We tested the hypothesis that the glyoxylate cycle is central to the flow of carbon in the AM symbiosis. The results of 13C labeling of germinating spores and extraradical mycelium with 13C2-acetate and 13C2-glycerol and analysis by nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy indicate that there are very substantial fluxes through the glyoxylate cycle in the fungal partner. Full-length sequences obtained by polymerase chain reaction from a cDNA library from germinating spores of the AM fungus Glomus intraradices showed strong homology to gene sequences for isocitrate lyase and malate synthase from plants and other fungal species. Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction measurements show that these genes are expressed at significant levels during the symbiosis. Glyoxysome-like bodies were observed by electron microscopy in fungal structures where the glyoxylate cycle is expected to be active, which is consistent with the presence in both enzyme sequences of motifs associated with glyoxysomal targeting. We also identified among several hundred expressed sequence tags several enzymes of primary metabolism whose expression during spore germination is consistent with previous labeling studies and with fluxes into and out of the glyoxylate cycle. PMID:11706207

  10. Bacillus anthracis Spore Surface Protein BclA Mediates Complement Factor H Binding to Spores and Promotes Spore Persistence

    PubMed Central

    Gu, Chunfang; Martinez-Moczygemba, Margarita; Herold, Jennifer; Botto, Marina; Wetsel, Rick A.; Xu, Yi

    2016-01-01

    Spores of Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, are known to persist in the host lungs for prolonged periods of time, however the underlying mechanism is poorly understood. In this study, we demonstrated that BclA, a major surface protein of B. anthracis spores, mediated direct binding of complement factor H (CFH) to spores. The surface bound CFH retained its regulatory cofactor activity resulting in C3 degradation and inhibition of downstream complement activation. By comparing results from wild type C57BL/6 mice and complement deficient mice, we further showed that BclA significantly contributed to spore persistence in the mouse lungs and dampened antibody responses to spores in a complement C3-dependent manner. In addition, prior exposure to BclA deletion spores (ΔbclA) provided significant protection against lethal challenges by B. anthracis, whereas the isogenic parent spores did not, indicating that BclA may also impair protective immunity. These results describe for the first time an immune inhibition mechanism of B. anthracis mediated by BclA and CFH that promotes spore persistence in vivo. The findings also suggested an important role of complement in persistent infections and thus have broad implications. PMID:27304426

  11. Bacillus anthracis Spore Surface Protein BclA Mediates Complement Factor H Binding to Spores and Promotes Spore Persistence.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yanyu; Jenkins, Sarah A; Gu, Chunfang; Shree, Ankita; Martinez-Moczygemba, Margarita; Herold, Jennifer; Botto, Marina; Wetsel, Rick A; Xu, Yi

    2016-06-01

    Spores of Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, are known to persist in the host lungs for prolonged periods of time, however the underlying mechanism is poorly understood. In this study, we demonstrated that BclA, a major surface protein of B. anthracis spores, mediated direct binding of complement factor H (CFH) to spores. The surface bound CFH retained its regulatory cofactor activity resulting in C3 degradation and inhibition of downstream complement activation. By comparing results from wild type C57BL/6 mice and complement deficient mice, we further showed that BclA significantly contributed to spore persistence in the mouse lungs and dampened antibody responses to spores in a complement C3-dependent manner. In addition, prior exposure to BclA deletion spores (ΔbclA) provided significant protection against lethal challenges by B. anthracis, whereas the isogenic parent spores did not, indicating that BclA may also impair protective immunity. These results describe for the first time an immune inhibition mechanism of B. anthracis mediated by BclA and CFH that promotes spore persistence in vivo. The findings also suggested an important role of complement in persistent infections and thus have broad implications. PMID:27304426

  12. Beyond animals and plants: dynamic maternal effects in the fungus Neurospora crassa.

    PubMed

    Zimmerman, K C K; Levitis, D A; Pringle, A

    2016-07-01

    Maternal effects are widely documented in animals and plants, but not in fungi or other eukaryotes. A principal cause of maternal effects is asymmetrical parental investment in a zygote, creating greater maternal vs. paternal influence on offspring phenotypes. Asymmetrical investments are not limited to animals and plants, but are also prevalent in fungi and groups including apicomplexans, dinoflagellates and red algae. Evidence suggesting maternal effects among fungi is sparse and anecdotal. In an experiment designed to test for maternal effects across sexual reproduction in the model fungus Neurospora crassa, we measured offspring phenotypes from crosses of all possible pairs of 22 individuals. Crosses encompassed reciprocals of 11 mating-type 'A' and 11 mating-type 'a' wild strains. After controlling for the genetic and geographic distances between strains in any individual cross, we found strong evidence for maternal control of perithecia (sporocarp) production, as well as maternal effects on spore numbers and spore germination. However, both parents exert equal influence on the percentage of spores that are pigmented and size of pigmented spores. We propose a model linking the stage-specific presence or absence of maternal effects to cellular developmental processes: effects appear to be mediated primarily through the maternal cytoplasm, and, after spore cell walls form, maternal influence on spore development is limited. Maternal effects in fungi, thus far largely ignored, are likely to shape species' evolution and ecologies. Moreover, the association of anisogamy and maternal effects in a fungus suggests maternal effects may also influence the biology of other anisogamous eukaryotes. PMID:27062053

  13. FATE OF BACILLUS SPHAERICUS 2362 SPORES IN NONTARGET INVERTEBRATES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Predatory stonefly larvae (Paragnetina media) acquired B. sphaericus spores by eating spore-laden midge larvae. eaf shredding stonefly larvae (Pteronarcys proteus) and cranefly larvae (Tipula abdominalis) acquired spores by feeding on contaminated leaf discs. pon switching to unc...

  14. Spore formation in plants: sporocyteless and more.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Li; Sundaresan, Venkatesan

    2015-01-01

    Plant reproduction is initiated by the specification of sporocytes that form haploid spores through meiosis. A new study in Arabidopsis published in Cell Research shows how the product of sporocyteless/nozzle, a key gene in this process, partners with co-repressors and transcription factors to promote spore formation, and draws interesting parallels with fungi. PMID:25512340

  15. Spore heat resistance and specific mineralization.

    PubMed Central

    Bender, G R; Marquis, R E

    1985-01-01

    Spores of Bacillus megaterium ATCC 19213, Bacillus subtilis niger and Bacillus stearothermophilus ATCC 7953 were converted to fully demineralized, but viable, H forms by controlled acid titration. H forms were more heat sensitive than were native forms, but z values were greater for killing of H spores than those for native spores. Therefore, the differences in heat sensitivity between native and H forms decreased with increasing killing temperature. The increase in heat sensitivity associated with demineralization did not appear to be due to damage to cortex lytic enzymes of the germination system because it could not be moderated by decoating heated H spores and plating them on medium with added lysozyme. H spores could be remineralized by means of back titration with appropriate base solutions. The remineralized spores, except for the Na form, were then more heat resistant than were H spores. Ca and Mn were more effective in restoring resistance than were Mg and K. Generally, the remineralized forms (except for the Na form) had z values greater than those of the native forms but still less than those of the H forms. At lower killing temperatures, the reinstatement of resistance could be related to the extent of remineralization. However, at higher killing temperatures, only a fraction of the mineral was effective in restoring resistance, and higher levels of remineralization did not result in greater resistance. Mineralization is clearly an important factor in spore heat resistance, but the relationship between resistance and mineralization is complex and dependent on killing temperature. PMID:3937495

  16. Parasitic and Saprophytic Abilities of the Nematode-Attacking Fungus Hirsutella rhossiliensis.

    PubMed

    Jaffee, B A; Zehr, E I

    1985-07-01

    The ability of Hirsutella rhossiliensis to colonize various substrates in sterile and nonsterile soil was measured. Hirsutella rhossiliensis was recovered from 67% and 77% of living, inoculated Criconemella xenoplax incubated in sterile and nonsterile soil, respectively. In contrast, the fungus was recovered from 100% and 18% of heat-killed, inoculated nematodes incubated on sterile and nonsterile soil, respectively. Hirsutella rhossiliensis was readily recovered from inoculated, autoclaved wheat seeds incubated in sterile soil but not from seeds incubated in nonsterile soil. Autoclaved peach roots were a poor substrate for the fungus. Germination of H. rhossiliensis spores incubated on agar disks above soil was about 90% regardless of soil treatment. However, germ tube length was greatly suppressed by nonsterile soil. Our results suggest that H. rhossiliensis is a better parasite than saprophyte and that the fungus may be specialized for attacking nematodes. PMID:19294104

  17. Antimicrobial Effects of Interferon-Inducible CXC Chemokines against Bacillus anthracis Spores and Bacilli▿

    PubMed Central

    Crawford, Matthew A.; Zhu, Yinghua; Green, Candace S.; Burdick, Marie D.; Sanz, Patrick; Alem, Farhang; O'Brien, Alison D.; Mehrad, Borna; Strieter, Robert M.; Hughes, Molly A.

    2009-01-01

    Based on previous studies showing that host chemokines exert antimicrobial activities against bacteria, we sought to determine whether the interferon-inducible Glu-Leu-Arg-negative CXC chemokines CXCL9, CXCL10, and CXCL11 exhibit antimicrobial activities against Bacillus anthracis. In vitro analysis demonstrated that all three CXC chemokines exerted direct antimicrobial effects against B. anthracis spores and bacilli including marked reductions in spore and bacillus viability as determined using a fluorometric assay of bacterial viability and CFU determinations. Electron microscopy studies revealed that CXCL10-treated spores failed to undergo germination as judged by an absence of cytological changes in spore structure that occur during the process of germination. Immunogold labeling of CXCL10-treated spores demonstrated that the chemokine was located internal to the exosporium in association primarily with the spore coat and its interface with the cortex. To begin examining the potential biological relevance of chemokine-mediated antimicrobial activity, we used a murine model of inhalational anthrax. Upon spore challenge, the lungs of C57BL/6 mice (resistant to inhalational B. anthracis infection) had significantly higher levels of CXCL9, CXCL10, and CXCL11 than did the lungs of A/J mice (highly susceptible to infection). Increased CXC chemokine levels were associated with significantly reduced levels of spore germination within the lungs as determined by in vivo imaging. Taken together, our data demonstrate a novel antimicrobial role for host chemokines against B. anthracis that provides unique insight into host defense against inhalational anthrax; these data also support the notion for an innovative approach in treating B. anthracis infection as well as infections caused by other spore-forming organisms. PMID:19179419

  18. The infrabuccal pellet piles of fungus-growing ants.

    PubMed

    Little, Ainslie E F; Murakami, Takahiro; Mueller, Ulrich G; Currie, Cameron R

    2003-12-01

    Fungus-growing ants (Attini) live in an obligate mutualism with the fungi they cultivate for food. Because of the obligate nature of this relationship, the success of the ants is directly dependent on their ability to grow healthy fungus gardens. Attine ants have evolved complex disease management strategies to reduce their garden's exposure to potential parasitic microbes, to prevent the establishment of infection in their gardens, and to remove infected garden sections. The infrabuccal pocket, a filtering device located in the oral cavity of all ants, is an integral part of the mechanisms that leaf-cutter ants use to prevent the invasion and spread of general microbial parasites and the specific fungal-garden parasite Escovopsis. Fungus-growing ants carefully groom their garden, collecting general debris and pathogenic spores of Escovopsis in their infrabuccal pocket, the contents of which are later expelled in dump chambers inside the nest or externally. In this study we examined how a phylogenetically diverse collection of attine ants treat their infrabuccal pellets. Unlike leaf-cutters that deposit their infrabuccal pellets directly in refuse piles, ants of the more basal attine lineages stack their infrabuccal pellets in piles located close to their gardens, and a separate caste of workers is devoted to the construction, management, and eventual disposal of these piles. PMID:14676952

  19. Plasma Assisted Decontamination of Bacterial Spores

    PubMed Central

    Kuo, Spencer P

    2008-01-01

    The efficacy and mechanism of killing bacterial spores by a plasma torch is studied. Bacterial-spore (Bacillus cereus) suspension is inoculated onto glass/paper slide-coupons and desiccated into dry samples, and inoculated into well-microplate as wet sample. The exposure distance of all samples is 4 cm from the nozzle of the torch. In the experiment, paper slide-coupon is inserted inside an envelope. The kill times on spores in three types of samples are measured to be about 3, 9, and 24 seconds. The changes in the morphology and shape of still viable spores in treated wet samples are recorded by scanning electron and atomic force microscopes. The loss of appendages and exosporium in the structure and squashed/flattened cell shape are observed. The emission spectroscopy of the torch indicates that the plasma effluent carries abundant reactive atomic oxygen, which is responsible for the destruction of spores. PMID:19662115

  20. The components of rice and watermelon root exudates and their effects on pathogenic fungus and watermelon defense.

    PubMed

    Ren, Lixuan; Huo, Hongwei; Zhang, Fang; Hao, Wenya; Xiao, Liang; Dong, Caixia; Xu, Guohua

    2016-06-01

    Watermelon (Citrullus lanatus) is susceptible to wilt disease caused by the fungus Fusarium oxysporum f. sp niveum (FON). Intercropping management of watermelon/aerobic rice (Oryza sativa) alleviates watermelon wilt disease, because some unidentified component(s) in rice root exudates suppress FON sporulation and spore germination. Here, we show that the phenolic acid p-coumaric acid is present in rice root exudates only, and it inhibits FON spore germination and sporulation. We found that exogenously applied p-coumaric acid up-regulated the expression of ClPR3 in roots, as well as increased chitinase activity in leaves. Furthermore, exogenously applied p-coumaric acid increased β-1,3-glucanase activity in watermelon roots. By contrast, we found that ferulic acid was secreted by watermelon roots, but not by rice roots, and that it stimulated spore germination and sporulation of FON. Exogenous application of ferulic acid down-regulated ClPR3 expression and inhibited chitinase activity in watermelon leaves. Salicylic acid was detected in both watermelon and rice root exudates, which stimulated FON spore germination at low concentrations and suppressed spore germination at high concentrations. Exogenously applied salicylic acid did not alter ClPR3 expression, but did increase chitinase and β-1,3-glucanase activities in watermelon leaves. Together, our results show that the root exudates of phenolic acids were different between rice and watermelon, which lead to their special ecological roles on pathogenic fungus and watermelon defense. PMID:27217091

  1. SUPPRESSION OF GYPSY MOTH (LEPIDOPTERA: LYMANTRIIDAE) POPULATIONS BY THE ENTOMOPATHOGENIC FUNGUS ENTOMOPHAGA MAIMAIGA AS AFFECTED BY GYPSY MOTH LARVAL POPULATION DENSITY AND SUPPLEMENTAL WATERING.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We assessed the potential for inducing an earlier epizootic of the fungus Entomophaga maimaiga by inducing early sporulation of resting spores by spraying water around the base of trees. Potential test sites along Skyline Drive in the Shenandoah National Park were characterized during the year 2000....

  2. Hemp Sesbania (Sesbania exaltata) control in rice (Oryza sativa) with the bioherbicidal fungus Colletotrichum gloeosporioides f. sp. aeschynomene formulated in an invert emulsion

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In greenhouse and field experiments, an invert emulsion (MSG 8.25) was tested with dried, formulated spores of the bioherbicidal fungus Colletotrichum gloeosporioides f. sp. aeschynomene, a highly virulent pathogen of the leguminous weed Aeschynomene virginica (northern jointvetch), but considered “...

  3. Effects of temperature and culture media on vegetative growth of an entomopathogenic fungus Isaria sp. (Hympcreales: Clavicipitaceae) naturally affecting the whitefly, Bemisia tabaci in Texas

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effects of temperature and mycological media on mycelial growth and estimates of spore production of the newly discovered entomopathogenic fungus Isaria poprawskii sp. nov. were investigated. The general response of daily radial growth of I. poprawskii as a function of temperature fits a linear...

  4. Epicoccum allergy: skin reaction patterns and spore/mycelium disparities recognized by IgG and IgE ELISA inhibition.

    PubMed

    Portnoy, J; Chapman, J; Burge, H; Muilenberg, M; Solomon, W

    1987-07-01

    Comparable degrees of skin reactivity were observed towards spore and mycelium extracts from two isolates of Epicoccum and to one preparation of Alternaria in 35 rural and 120 university patients. The best experimental extracts detected Epicoccum sensitivity in 70% of the group tested while the commercial extract detected sensitivity in only 6%. Skin reaction correlations were greatest within isolates (eg, spore-A/mycelium-A), then for specific fungus parts (eg, spore-A/spore-B), then between isolates and parts (spore-A/mycelium-B). High correlations were found between individual IgG and IgE ELISA values for all antigens using serum from Epicoccum skin-reactive patients. ELISA inhibition results suggested that significant cross-reactivity exists between Epicoccum and Alternaria antigens recognized by IgG but not by IgE. ELISA inhibition cross-reaction patterns among Epicoccum antigens were comparable to skin reactions while IgG patterns showed little variability. Further characterization of spore/mycelium and interstrain recognition patterns among different immunoglobulin isotypes will be necessary before complete standardization of extracts from different parts of fungi will be possible. The use of spore material for skin testing and treatment of Epicoccum sensitivity appears to be both premature and unnecessary at this time. PMID:3605796

  5. Effect of relative humidity on the aerodynamic diameter and respiratory deposition of fungal spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reponen, Tiina; Willeke, Klaus; Ulevicius, Vidmantas; Reponen, Auvo; Grinshpun, Sergey A.

    Exposure to airborne fungal spores may cause respiratory symptoms. The hygroscopicity of airborne spores may significantly affect their aerodynamic diameter, and thus change their deposition pattern in the human respiratory tract. We have investigated the change in aerodynamic diameter of five different fungal species as a function of relative humidity. Liquid and dry dispersion methods were explored for the aerosolization of the fungal spores. A new system that produces non-aggregated spore aerosol directly from a moldy surface was designed and found suitable for this study. The spores were aerosolized from a mold growth on agar by ducting dry air over the surface, and spore chains in the flow were broken up by passing the entire flow through a critical orifice. Size-spectrometric measurements with an Aerodynamic Particle Sizer showed that the aerodynamic diameter of the tested fungal spores does not change significantly when the relative humidity increases from 30% to 90%. A more distinct spore size increase was found at a relative humidity of ˜ 100%. The highest change of the aerodynamic diameter was found with Cladosporium cladosporioides: it increased from 1.8 μm to 2.3 μm when the relative humidity increased from 30% to ˜ 100%. The size increase corresponds to an approximate doubling of the particle volume. In order to estimate the effect of hygroscopic growth on the respiratory deposition of spores, the mean depositions in the human respiratory tract were calculated for fungal spores with various size changes due to hygroscopic growth. A recently developed model of the International Commission of Radiological Protection was used for the respiratory deposition calculations. We found that the 27% increase in Cladosporium size results in a 20-30% increase in the respiratory deposition of these spores. We conclude that most fungal spores are only slightly hygroscopic and the hygroscopic increase does not significantly affect their respiratory deposition. Our

  6. Constructing Fluorogenic Bacillus Spores (F-Spores) via Hydrophobic Decoration of Coat Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Ferencko, Linda; Rotman, Boris

    2010-01-01

    Background Bacterial spores are protected by a coat consisting of about 60 different proteins assembled as a biochemically complex structure with intriguing morphological and mechanical properties. Historically, the coat has been considered a static structure providing rigidity and mainly acting as a sieve to exclude exogenous large toxic molecules, such as lytic enzymes. Over recent years, however, new information about the coat's architecture and function have emerged from experiments using innovative tools such as automated scanning microscopy, and high resolution atomic force microscopy. Principal Findings Using thin-section electron microscopy, we found that the coat of Bacillus spores has topologically specific proteins forming a layer that is identifiable because it spontaneously becomes decorated with hydrophobic fluorogenic probes from the milieu. Moreover, spores with decorated coat proteins (termed F-spores) have the unexpected attribute of responding to external germination signals by generating intense fluorescence. Fluorescence data from diverse experimental designs, including F-spores constructed from five different Bacilli species, indicated that the fluorogenic ability of F-spores is under control of a putative germination-dependent mechanism. Conclusions This work uncovers a novel attribute of spore-coat proteins that we exploited to decorate a specific layer imparting germination-dependent fluorogenicity to F-spores. We expect that F-spores will provide a model system to gain new insights into structure/function dynamics of spore-coat proteins. PMID:20174569

  7. Slow Leakage of Ca-Dipicolinic Acid from Individual Bacillus Spores during Initiation of Spore Germination

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shiwei; Setlow, Peter

    2015-01-01

    When exposed to nutrient or nonnutrient germinants, individual Bacillus spores can return to life through germination followed by outgrowth. Laser tweezers, Raman spectroscopy, and either differential interference contrast or phase-contrast microscopy were used to analyze the slow dipicolinic acid (DPA) leakage (normally ∼20% of spore DPA) from individual spores that takes place prior to the lag time, Tlag, when spores begin rapid release of remaining DPA. Major conclusions from this work with Bacillus subtilis spores were as follows: (i) slow DPA leakage from wild-type spores germinating with nutrients did not begin immediately after nutrient exposure but only at a later heterogeneous time T1; (ii) the period of slow DPA leakage (ΔTleakage = Tlag − T1) was heterogeneous among individual spores, although the amount of DPA released in this period was relatively constant; (iii) increases in germination temperature significantly decreased T1 times but increased values of ΔTleakage; (iv) upon germination with l-valine for 10 min followed by addition of d-alanine to block further germination, all germinated spores had T1 times of less than 10 min, suggesting that T1 is the time when spores become committed to germinate; (v) elevated levels of SpoVA proteins involved in DPA movement in spore germination decreased T1 and Tlag times but not the amount of DPA released in ΔTleakage; (vi) lack of the cortex-lytic enzyme CwlJ increased DPA leakage during germination due to longer ΔTleakage times in which more DPA was released; and (vii) there was slow DPA leakage early in germination of B. subtilis spores by the nonnutrients CaDPA and dodecylamine and in nutrient germination of Bacillus cereus and Bacillus megaterium spores. Overall, these findings have identified and characterized a new early event in Bacillus spore germination. PMID:25583976

  8. Protection of Bacillus pumilus spores by catalases.

    PubMed

    Checinska, Aleksandra; Burbank, Malcolm; Paszczynski, Andrzej J

    2012-09-01

    Bacillus pumilus SAFR-032, isolated at spacecraft assembly facilities of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Jet Propulsion Laboratory, is difficult to kill by the sterilization method of choice, which uses liquid or vapor hydrogen peroxide. We identified two manganese catalases, YjqC and BPUM_1305, in spore protein extracts of several B. pumilus strains by using PAGE and mass spectrometric analyses. While the BPUM_1305 catalase was present in six of the B. pumilus strains tested, YjqC was not detected in ATCC 7061 and BG-B79. Furthermore, both catalases were localized in the spore coat layer along with laccase and superoxide dismutase. Although the initial catalase activity in ATCC 7061 spores was higher, it was less stable over time than the SAFR-032 enzyme. We propose that synergistic activity of YjqC and BPUM_1305, along with other coat oxidoreductases, contributes to the enhanced resistance of B. pumilus spores to hydrogen peroxide. We observed that the product of the catalase reaction, gaseous oxygen, forms expanding vesicles on the spore surface, affecting the mechanical integrity of the coat layer, resulting in aggregation of the spores. The accumulation of oxygen gas and aggregations may play a crucial role in limiting further exposure of Bacilli spore surfaces to hydrogen peroxide or other toxic chemicals when water is present. PMID:22752169

  9. Protein profile of Bacillus subtilis spore.

    PubMed

    Mao, Langyong; Jiang, Shantong; Wang, Bin; Chen, Liang; Yao, Qin; Chen, Keping

    2011-08-01

    Natural wild-type strains of Bacillus subtilis spore is regarded as a non-pathogenic for both human and animal, and has been classified as a novel food which is currently being used as probiotics added in the consumption. To identify B. subtilis spore proteins, we have accomplished a preliminary proteomic analysis of B. subtilis spore, with a combination of two-dimensional electrophoretic separations and matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization tandem time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS). In this article, we presented a reference map of 158 B. subtilis spore proteins with an isoelectric point (pI) between 4 and 7. Followed by mass spectrometry (MS) analysis, we identified 71 B. subtilis spore proteins with high level of confidence. Database searches, combined with hydropathy analysis and GO analysis revealed that most of the B. subtilis spore proteins were hydrophilic proteins related to catalytic function. These results should accelerate efforts to understand the resistance of spore to harsh conditions. PMID:21667307

  10. Analysis of Bacillus globigii spores by CE.

    PubMed

    Chichester, Kimberly D; Silcott, David B; Colyer, Christa L

    2008-02-01

    It is imperative in today's world that harmful airborne or solution-based microbes can be detected quickly and efficiently. Bacillus globigii (Bg) spores are used as a simulant for Bacillus anthracis (Ba) due to their similar shape, size, and cellular makeup. The utility of CE to separate and detect low levels of Bg spore concentrations will be evaluated. To differentiate spores from background particulates, several dyes, including fluorescamine, C-10, NN-127, Red-1c, and indocyanine green (ICG), were utilized as noncovalent labels for proteins on the Bg spore surface, as well as for HSA and homoserine standards. On-column labeling, with dye present in the running buffer, was utilized to obtain greater sensitivity and better separation. CE with LIF detection enables interactions between the dye and spore surface proteins to be observed, with enhanced fluorescence occurring upon binding of the dye to surface protein. Resulting electropherograms showed unique fingerprints for each dye with Bg spores. Migration times were under 10 min for all dye-spore complexes, with net mobilities ranging from 3.5x10(-4) to 6.9x10(-4) cm(2) V(-1) s(-1), and calibration curves yielded correlation coefficients of 0.98 or better for four of the dyes studied. PMID:18203249

  11. FAR1 and FAR2 Regulate the Expression of Genes Associated with Lipid Metabolism in the Rice Blast Fungus Magnaporthe oryzae

    PubMed Central

    bin Yusof, Mohammad Termizi; Kershaw, Michael J.; Soanes, Darren M.; Talbot, Nicholas J.

    2014-01-01

    The rice blast fungus Magnaporthe oryzae causes plant disease via specialised infection structures called appressoria. These dome-shaped cells are able to generate enormous internal pressure, which enables penetration of rice tissue by invasive hyphae. Previous studies have shown that mobilisation of lipid bodies and subsequent lipid metabolism are essential pre-requisites for successful appressorium-mediated plant infection, which requires autophagic recycling of the contents of germinated spores and germ tubes to the developing appressorium. Here, we set out to identify putative regulators of lipid metabolism in the rice blast fungus. We report the identification of FAR1 and FAR2, which encode highly conserved members of the Zn2-Cys6 family of transcriptional regulators. We generated Δfar1, Δfar2 and Δfar1Δfar2 double mutants in M. oryzae and show that these deletion mutants are deficient in growth on long chain fatty acids. In addition, Δfar2 mutants are also unable to grow on acetate and short chain fatty acids. FAR1 and FAR2 are necessary for differential expression of genes involved in fatty acid β-oxidation, acetyl-CoA translocation, peroxisomal biogenesis, and the glyoxylate cycle in response to the presence of lipids. Furthermore, FAR2 is necessary for expression of genes associated with acetyl-CoA synthesis. Interestingly, Δfar1, Δfar2 and Δfar1Δfar2 mutants show no observable delay or reduction in lipid body mobilisation during plant infection, suggesting that these transcriptional regulators control lipid substrate utilization by the fungus but not the mobilisation of intracellular lipid reserves during infection-related morphogenesis. PMID:24949933

  12. FAR1 and FAR2 regulate the expression of genes associated with lipid metabolism in the rice blast fungus Magnaporthe oryzae.

    PubMed

    bin Yusof, Mohammad Termizi; Kershaw, Michael J; Soanes, Darren M; Talbot, Nicholas J

    2014-01-01

    The rice blast fungus Magnaporthe oryzae causes plant disease via specialised infection structures called appressoria. These dome-shaped cells are able to generate enormous internal pressure, which enables penetration of rice tissue by invasive hyphae. Previous studies have shown that mobilisation of lipid bodies and subsequent lipid metabolism are essential pre-requisites for successful appressorium-mediated plant infection, which requires autophagic recycling of the contents of germinated spores and germ tubes to the developing appressorium. Here, we set out to identify putative regulators of lipid metabolism in the rice blast fungus. We report the identification of FAR1 and FAR2, which encode highly conserved members of the Zn2-Cys6 family of transcriptional regulators. We generated Δfar1, Δfar2 and Δfar1Δfar2 double mutants in M. oryzae and show that these deletion mutants are deficient in growth on long chain fatty acids. In addition, Δfar2 mutants are also unable to grow on acetate and short chain fatty acids. FAR1 and FAR2 are necessary for differential expression of genes involved in fatty acid β-oxidation, acetyl-CoA translocation, peroxisomal biogenesis, and the glyoxylate cycle in response to the presence of lipids. Furthermore, FAR2 is necessary for expression of genes associated with acetyl-CoA synthesis. Interestingly, Δfar1, Δfar2 and Δfar1Δfar2 mutants show no observable delay or reduction in lipid body mobilisation during plant infection, suggesting that these transcriptional regulators control lipid substrate utilization by the fungus but not the mobilisation of intracellular lipid reserves during infection-related morphogenesis. PMID:24949933

  13. Memory of Germinant Stimuli in Bacterial Spores

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shiwei; Faeder, James R.; Setlow, Peter

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Bacterial spores, despite being metabolically dormant, possess the remarkable capacity to detect nutrients and other molecules in their environment through a biochemical sensory apparatus that can trigger spore germination, allowing the return to vegetative growth within minutes of exposure of germinants. We demonstrate here that bacterial spores of multiple species retain memory of transient exposures to germinant stimuli that can result in altered responses to subsequent exposure. The magnitude and decay of these memory effects depend on the pulse duration as well as on the separation time, incubation temperature, and pH values between the pulses. Spores of Bacillus species germinate in response to nutrients that interact with germinant receptors (GRs) in the spore’s inner membrane, with different nutrient types acting on different receptors. In our experiments, B. subtilis spores display memory when the first and second germinant pulses target different receptors, suggesting that some components of spore memory are downstream of GRs. Furthermore, nonnutrient germinants, which do not require GRs, exhibit memory either alone or in combination with nutrient germinants, and memory of nonnutrient stimulation is found to be more persistent than that induced by GR-dependent stimuli. Spores of B. cereus and Clostridium difficile also exhibit germination memory, suggesting that memory may be a general property of bacterial spores. These observations along with experiments involving strains with mutations in various germination proteins suggest a model in which memory is stored primarily in the metastable states of SpoVA proteins, which comprise a channel for release of dipicolinic acid, a major early event in spore germination. PMID:26604257

  14. Micro-sonicator for spore lysis

    DOEpatents

    Miles, Robin R.; Belgrader, Phillip; Nasarabadi, Shanavaz L.

    2000-01-01

    A micro-sonicator for spore lysis. Using micromachining technology, the micro-sonicator uses ultrasonic excitation of spores to perform spore and cell lysis. The micro-sonicator comprises a container with a cavity therein for retaining the sample in an ultrasonic transmission medium, the cavity being closed by a silicon membrane to which an electrode and piezoelectric material are attached, with the electrode and piezoelectric material being electrically connected to an AC signal generator which causes the membrane to flex and vibrate at the frequency of the applied voltage.

  15. Water absorption in a refractive index model for bacterial spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siegrist, K. M.; Thrush, E.; Airola, M.; Carr, A. K.; Limsui, D. M.; Boggs, N. T.; Thomas, M. E.; Carter, C. C.

    2009-05-01

    The complexity of biological agents can make it difficult to identify the important factors impacting scattering characteristics among variables such as size, shape, internal structure and biochemical composition, particle aggregation, and sample additives. This difficulty is exacerbated by the environmentally interactive nature of biological organisms. In particular, bacterial spores equilibrate with environmental humidity by absorption/desorption of water which can affect both the complex refractive index and the size/shape distributions of particles - two factors upon which scattering characteristics depend critically. Therefore accurate analysis of experimental data for determination of refractive index must take account of particle water content. First, spectral transmission measurements to determine visible refractive index done on suspensions of bacterial spores must account for water (or other solvent) uptake. Second, realistic calculations of aerosol scattering cross sections should consider effects of atmospheric humidity on particle water content, size and shape. In this work we demonstrate a method for determining refractive index of bacterial spores bacillus atropheus (BG), bacillus thuringiensis (BT) and bacillus anthracis Sterne (BAs) which accounts for these effects. Visible index is found from transmission measurements on aqueous and DMSO suspensions of particles, using an anomalous diffraction approximation. A simplified version of the anomalous diffraction theory is used to eliminate the need for knowledge of particle size. Results using this approach indicate the technique can be useful in determining the visible refractive index of particles when size and shape distributions are not well known but fall within the region of validity of anomalous dispersion theory.

  16. Quantification and Single-Spore Detection of Phakopsora pachyrhizi

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The microscopic identification and quantification of Phakopsora pachyrhizi spores from environmental samples, spore traps, and laboratory specimens can represent a challenge. Such reports, especially from passive spore traps, commonly describe the number of “rust-like” spores; for other forensic sa...

  17. Identification and characterization of glycoproteins on the spore surface of Clostridium difficile.

    PubMed

    Strong, Philippa C R; Fulton, Kelly M; Aubry, Annie; Foote, Simon; Twine, Susan M; Logan, Susan M

    2014-07-01

    In this study, we identify a major spore surface protein, BclA, and provide evidence that this protein is glycosylated. Following extraction of the spore surface, solubilized proteins were separated by one-dimensional PAGE and stained with glycostain to reveal a reactive high-molecular-mass region of approximately 600 kDa. Tandem mass spectrometry analysis of in-gel digests showed this band to contain peptides corresponding to a putative exosporangial glycoprotein (BclA3) and identified a number of glycopeptides modified with multiple N-acetyl hexosamine moieties and, in some cases, capped with novel glycans. In addition, we demonstrate that the glycosyltransferase gene sgtA (gene CD3350 in strain 630 and CDR3194 in strain R20291), which is located immediately upstream of the bclA3 homolog, is involved in the glycosylation of the spore surface, and is cotranscribed with bclA3. The presence of anti-β-O-GlcNAc-reactive material was demonstrated on the surface of spores by immunofluorescence and in surface extracts by Western blotting, although each strain produced a distinct pattern of reactivity. Reactivity of the spore surface with the anti-β-O-GlcNAc antibody was abolished in the 630 and R20291 glycosyltransferase mutant strains, while complementation with a wild-type copy of the gene restored the β-O-GlcNAc reactivity. Phenotypic testing of R20291 glycosyltransferase mutant spores revealed no significant change in sensitivity to ethanol or lysozyme. However, a change in the resistance to heat of R20291 glycosyltransferase mutant spores compared to R20291 spores was observed, as was the ability to adhere to and be internalized by macrophages. PMID:24816601

  18. Survival of Bacillus pumilus spores for a prolonged period of time in real space conditions.

    PubMed

    Vaishampayan, Parag A; Rabbow, Elke; Horneck, Gerda; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri J

    2012-05-01

    To prevent forward contamination and maintain the scientific integrity of future life-detection missions, it is important to characterize and attempt to eliminate terrestrial microorganisms associated with exploratory spacecraft and landing vehicles. Among the organisms isolated from spacecraft-associated surfaces, spores of Bacillus pumilus SAFR-032 exhibited unusually high resistance to decontamination techniques such as UV radiation and peroxide treatment. Subsequently, B. pumilus SAFR-032 was flown to the International Space Station (ISS) and exposed to a variety of space conditions via the European Technology Exposure Facility (EuTEF). After 18 months of exposure in the EXPOSE facility of the European Space Agency (ESA) on EuTEF under dark space conditions, SAFR-032 spores showed 10-40% survivability, whereas a survival rate of 85-100% was observed when these spores were kept aboard the ISS under dark simulated martian atmospheric conditions. In contrast, when UV (>110 nm) was applied on SAFR-032 spores for the same time period and under the same conditions used in EXPOSE, a ∼7-log reduction in viability was observed. A parallel experiment was conducted on Earth with identical samples under simulated space conditions. Spores exposed to ground simulations showed less of a reduction in viability when compared with the "real space" exposed spores (∼3-log reduction in viability for "UV-Mars," and ∼4-log reduction in viability for "UV-Space"). A comparative proteomics analysis indicated that proteins conferring resistant traits (superoxide dismutase) were present in higher concentration in space-exposed spores when compared to controls. Also, the first-generation cells and spores derived from space-exposed samples exhibited elevated UVC resistance when compared with their ground control counterparts. The data generated are important for calculating the probability and mechanisms of microbial survival in space conditions and assessing microbial contaminants

  19. An endosymbiotic conidial fungus, Scopulariopsis brevicaulis, protects the American dog tick, Dermacentor variabilis, from desiccation imposed by an entomopathogenic fungus.

    PubMed

    Yoder, Jay A; Benoit, Joshua B; Denlinger, David L; Tank, Justin L; Zettler, Lawrence W

    2008-02-01

    The functional role of an endosymbiotic conidial fungus (Scopulariopsis brevicaulis) prevalent within the integumental glands and hemocoel of the American dog tick (Dermacentor variabilis) was investigated to explore the nature of this tick/fungus association. D. variabilis is normally highly resistant to Metarhizium anisopliae, a widely-distributed entomopathogenic fungus, but when mature female ticks harboring S. brevicaulis were fed a solution containing a mycotoxin (Amphotericin B) to purge this mycobiont internally, the ticks inoculated with M. anisopliae displayed classic signs of pathogenicity, as evidenced by recovery of M. anisopliae from ticks by internal fungus culture, greatly accelerated net transpiration water loss rates (nearly 3x faster than ticks containing S. brevicaulis naturally) and elevation of critical equilibrium humidity (CEH) closer to saturation, implying a reduced capacity to absorb water vapor and disruption of water balance (water gain not equal water loss) that resulted in tick death. The presence of S. brevicaulis within the tick was previously puzzling: the fungus is transmitted maternally and there is no apparent harm inflicted to either generation. This study suggests that S. brevicaulis provides protection to D. variabilis ticks against M. anisopliae. Thus, the S. brevicaulis/tick association appears to be mutualistic symbiosis. Given that both organisms are of medical-veterinary importance, disruption of this symbiosis has potential for generating novel tools for disease control. PMID:17880996

  20. Asynchronous spore germination in isogenic natural isolates of Saccharomyces paradoxus.

    PubMed

    Stelkens, Rike B; Miller, Eric L; Greig, Duncan

    2016-05-01

    Spores from wild yeast isolates often show great variation in the size of colonies they produce, for largely unknown reasons. Here we measure the colonies produced from single spores from six different wild Saccharomyces paradoxus strains. We found remarkable variation in spore colony sizes, even among spores that were genetically identical. Different strains had different amounts of variation in spore colony sizes, and variation was not affected by the number of preceding meioses, or by spore maturation time. We used time-lapse photography to show that wild strains also have high variation in spore germination timing, providing a likely mechanism for the variation in spore colony sizes. When some spores from a laboratory strain make small colonies, or no colonies, it usually indicates a genetic or meiotic fault. Here, we demonstrate that in wild strains spore colony size variation is normal. We discuss and assess potential adaptive and non-adaptive explanations for this variation. PMID:26880797

  1. Rapid onsite assessment of spore viability.

    SciTech Connect

    Branda, Steven; Lane, Todd W.; VanderNoot, Victoria A.; Gaucher, Sara P.; Jokerst, Amanda S.

    2005-12-01

    This one year LDRD addresses problems of threat assessment and restoration of facilities following a bioterror incident like the incident that closed down mail facilities in late 2001. Facilities that are contaminated with pathogenic spores such as B. anthracis spores must be shut down while they are treated with a sporicidal agent and the effectiveness of the treatment is ascertained. This process involves measuring the viability of spore test strips, laid out in a grid throughout the facility; the CDC accepted methodologies require transporting the samples to a laboratory and carrying out a 48 hr outgrowth experiment. We proposed developing a technique that will ultimately lead to a fieldable microfluidic device that can rapidly assess (ideally less than 30 min) spore viability and effectiveness of sporicidal treatment, returning facilities to use in hours not days. The proposed method will determine viability of spores by detecting early protein synthesis after chemical germination. During this year, we established the feasibility of this approach and gathered preliminary results that should fuel a future more comprehensive effort. Such a proposal is currently under review with the NIH. Proteomic signatures of Bacillus spores and vegetative cells were assessed by both slab gel electrophoresis as well as microchip based gel electrophoresis employing sensitive laser-induced fluorescence detection. The conditions for germination using a number of chemical germinants were evaluated and optimized and the time course of protein synthesis was ascertained. Microseparations were carried out using both viable spores and spores inactivated by two different methods. A select number of the early synthesis proteins were digested into peptides for analysis by mass spectrometry.

  2. The origin of the attine ant-fungus mutualism.

    PubMed

    Mueller, U G; Schultz, T R; Currie, C R; Adams, R M; Malloch, D

    2001-06-01

    from contents of the ant alimentary canal and particularly from the contents of the infrabuccal pocket, a pharyngeal device that filters out solids before liquids pass into the intestine. Infrabuccal pocket contents reveal that ants routinely ingest fungal spores and hyphal material. Infrabuccal contents are eventually expelled as a pellet on nest middens or away from the nest by foragers, suggesting that the pellet provides fungi with a means for the dispersal of spores and hyphae. Associations between such "buccophilous" fungi and ants may have originated multiple times and may have become elaborated and externalized in the case of the attine ant-fungus mutualism. Thus, contrary to the traditional model in which attine fungi are viewed as passive symbionts that happened to come under ant control, this alternative model of a myrmecochorous origin of the attine mutualism attributes an important role to evolutionary modifications of the fungi that preceded the ant transition from hunter-gatherer to fungus farmer. PMID:11409051

  3. Fungal spore germination into yeast or mycelium: possible implications of dimorphism in evolution and human pathogenesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghormade, Vandana; Deshpande, M. V.

    The ability of dimorphism in fungi is conventionally regarded as a reversible change between the two vegetative forms, yeast and mycelium, in response to environmental change. A zygomycetous isolate, Benjaminiella poitrasii, exhibited yeast-mycelium transition in response to the change in temperature (37-28 °C) and decrease in glucose concentration. For the first time the presence of dimorphic response during asexual and sexual spore germination is reported under the dimorphism-triggering conditions in B. poitrasii. The zygospores germinated into budding yeast when subjected to yeast-form supporting conditions. The mycelium-form favoring conditions gave rise to true mycelium. Similarly, the asexual spores displayed a dimorphic response during germination. Our observations suggest that dimorphism is an intrinsic ability present in the vegetative, asexual, and sexual forms of the fungus. As dimorphic fungi are intermediate to the unicellular yeast and the filamentous forms, understanding of the dimorphic character could be useful to trace the evolutionary relationships among taxonomically different fungi. Moreover, the implications of spore germination during the onset of pathogenesis and in drug development for human health care are discussed.

  4. Sensitive, Rapid Detection of Bacterial Spores

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kern, Roger G.; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri; Chen, Fei; Pickett, Molly; Matsuyama, Asahi

    2009-01-01

    A method of sensitive detection of bacterial spores within delays of no more than a few hours has been developed to provide an alternative to a prior three-day NASA standard culture-based assay. A capability for relatively rapid detection of bacterial spores would be beneficial for many endeavors, a few examples being agriculture, medicine, public health, defense against biowarfare, water supply, sanitation, hygiene, and the food-packaging and medical-equipment industries. The method involves the use of a commercial rapid microbial detection system (RMDS) that utilizes a combination of membrane filtration, adenosine triphosphate (ATP) bioluminescence chemistry, and analysis of luminescence images detected by a charge-coupled-device camera. This RMDS has been demonstrated to be highly sensitive in enumerating microbes (it can detect as little as one colony-forming unit per sample) and has been found to yield data in excellent correlation with those of culture-based methods. What makes the present method necessary is that the specific RMDS and the original protocols for its use are not designed for discriminating between bacterial spores and other microbes. In this method, a heat-shock procedure is added prior to an incubation procedure that is specified in the original RMDS protocols. In this heat-shock procedure (which was also described in a prior NASA Tech Briefs article on enumerating sporeforming bacteria), a sample is exposed to a temperature of 80 C for 15 minutes. Spores can survive the heat shock, but nonspore- forming bacteria and spore-forming bacteria that are not in spore form cannot survive. Therefore, any colonies that grow during incubation after the heat shock are deemed to have originated as spores.

  5. Method for collecting spores from a mold

    DOEpatents

    Au, Frederick H. F.; Beckert, Werner F.

    1977-01-01

    A technique and apparatus used therewith for determining the uptake of plutonium and other contaminants by soil microorganisms which, in turn, gives a measure of the plutonium and/or other contaminants available to the biosphere at that particular time. A measured quantity of uncontaminated spores of a selected mold is added to a moistened sample of the soil to be tested. The mixture is allowed to sit a predetermined number of days under specified temperature conditions. An agar layer is then applied to the top of the sample. After three or more days, when spores of the mold growing in the sample have formed, the spores are collected by a miniature vacuum collection apparatus operated under preselected vacuum conditions, which collect only the spores with essentially no contamination by mycelial fragments or culture medium. After collection, the fungal spores are dried and analyzed for the plutonium and/or other contaminants. The apparatus is also suitable for collection of pollen, small insects, dust and other small particles, material from thin-layer chromatography plates, etc.

  6. Aerodynamics of puffball mushroom spore dispersal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amador, Guillermo; Barberie, Alex; Hu, David

    2012-11-01

    Puffball mushrooms Lycoperdon are spherical fungi that release a cloud of spores in response to raindrop impacts. In this combined experimental and theoretical study, we elucidate the aerodynamics of this unique impact-based spore-dispersal. We characterize live puffball ejections by high speed video, the geometry and elasticity of their shells by cantilever experiments, and the packing fraction and size of their spores by scanning electron microscope. We build a dynamically similar puffball mimic composed of a tied-off latex balloon filled with baby powder and topped with a 1-cm slit. A jet of powder is elicited by steady lateral compression of the mimic between two plates. The jet height is a bell-shaped function of force applied, with a peak of 18 cm at loads of 45 N. We rationalize the increase in jet height with force using Darcy's Law: the applied force generates an overpressure maintained by the air-tight elastic membrane. Pressure is relieved as the air travels through the spore interstitial spaces, entrains spores, and exits through the puffball orifice. This mechanism demonstrates how powder-filled elastic shells can generate high-speed jets using energy harvested from rain.

  7. Bacillus subtilis Spore Inner Membrane Proteome.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Linli; Abhyankar, Wishwas; Ouwerling, Natasja; Dekker, Henk L; van Veen, Henk; van der Wel, Nicole N; Roseboom, Winfried; de Koning, Leo J; Brul, Stanley; de Koster, Chris G

    2016-02-01

    The endospore is the dormant form of Bacillus subtilis and many other Firmicutes. By sporulation, these spore formers can survive very harsh physical and chemical conditions. Yet, they need to go through germination to return to their growing form. The spore inner membrane (IM) has been shown to play an essential role in triggering the initiation of germination. In this study, we isolated the IM of bacterial spores, in parallel with the isolation of the membrane of vegetative cells. With the use of GeLC-MS/MS, over 900 proteins were identified from the B. subtilis spore IM preparations. By bioinformatics-based membrane protein predictions, ca. one-third could be predicted to be membrane-localized. A large number of unique proteins as well as proteins common to the two membrane proteomes were identified. In addition to previously known IM proteins, a number of IM proteins were newly identified, at least some of which are likely to provide new insights into IM physiology, unveiling proteins putatively involved in spore germination machinery and hence putative germination inhibition targets. PMID:26731423

  8. Tilletia puccinelliae, a new species of reticulate-spored bunt fungus infecting Puccinellia distans

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A shipment of seeds of Fults alkali grass (Puccinellia distans) grown in Washington state containing bunted seeds was intercepted by quarantine officials at China’s Tianjin Entry-Exit Quarantine and Inspection Bureau. The bunted seeds were filled with irregularly shaped, reticulately ornamented teli...

  9. Survival Studies with Spores of Clostridium botulinum Type E in Pasteurized Meat of the Blue Crab Callinectes sapidus1

    PubMed Central

    Cockey, Ralph R.; Tatro, Mahlon C.

    1974-01-01

    Clostridium botulinum type E studies reported in this paper include the incidence of the organism in selected Chesapeake Bay areas, growth and toxin production in crabmeat homogenates, and the effect of pasteurization upon varying levels of spores in crabmeat. Type E spores were detected in 21 of 24 bottom mud samples taken at locations from which blue crabs were being harvested. Sterilized crabmeat homogenates inoculated with as little as five spores per 10 g became toxic after 8 days at 50 F, 2 days at 75 F, and 1 day at 85 F. Growth at 50 F and above was accompanied by gas production and a slightly sour odor. Growth and toxin production at 40 F required 55 days or longer and inocula of 103 spores or higher per 10 g of homogenate. At 40 F gas production was usually not apparent and no off odors could be detected. A recommended minimum pasteurization of 1 min at 185 F internal meat temperature reduced type E spore levels in inoculated packs of crabmeat from 108 spores per 100 g to 6 or less spores per 100 g, and the pasteurized meat remained nontoxic during 6 months of storage at 40 F. PMID:4596746

  10. Pulmonary Injury after Combined Exposures to Low-Dose Low-LET Radiation and Fungal Spores

    PubMed Central

    Marples, B.; Downing, L.; Sawarynski, K. E.; Finkelstein, J. N.; Williams, J. P.; Martinez, A. A.; Wilson, G. D.; Sims, M. D.

    2013-01-01

    Exposure to infectious microbes is a likely confounder after a nuclear terrorism event. In combination with radiation, morbidity and mortality from an infection may increase significantly. Pulmonary damage after low-dose low-LET irradiation is characterized by an initial diffuse alveolar inflammation. By contrast, inhaled fungal spores produce localized damage around pulmonary bronchioles. In the present study, we assessed lung injury in C57BL/6 mice after combined exposures to whole-body X radiation and inhaled fungal spores. Either animals were exposed to Aspergillus spores and immediately irradiated with 2 Gy, or the inoculation and irradiation were separated by 8 weeks. Pulmonary injury was assessed at 24 and 48 h and 1, 2, 4, 8, and 24 weeks later using standard H&E-stained sections and compared with sham-treated age-matched controls. Immunohistochemistry for invasive inflammatory cells (macrophages, neutrophils and B and T lymphocytes) was performed. A semi-quantitative assessment of pulmonary injury was made using three distinct parameters: local infiltration of inflammatory cells, diffuse inflammation, and thickening and distortion of alveolar architecture. Radiation-induced changes in lung architecture were most evident during the first 2 weeks postexposure. Fungal changes were seen over the first 4 weeks. Simultaneous combined exposures significantly increased the duration of acute pulmonary damage up to 24 weeks (P < 0.01). In contrast, administration of the fungus 8 weeks after irradiation did not produce enhanced levels of acute pulmonary damage. These data imply that the inhalation of fungal spores at the time of a radiation exposure alters the susceptibility of the lungs to radiation-induced injury. PMID:21275606

  11. Transcriptome sequencing and characterization of ungerminated and germinated spores of Nosema bombycis.

    PubMed

    Liu, Han; Li, Mingqian; He, Xinyi; Cai, Shunfeng; He, Xiangkang; Lu, Xingmeng

    2016-03-01

    Nosema bombycis is an obligate intracellular parasitic fungus that utilizes a distinctive mechanism to infect Bombyx mori. Germination, an indispensible process through which microsporidia infect the host cells, is regarded as a key developmental turning point for microsporidia from dormant state to reproduction state. Thus, elucidating the transcriptome changes before and after germination is crucial for parasite control. However, the molecular basis of germination of microsporidia remains unknown. To investigate this germination process, the transcriptome of N. bombycis ungerminated spores and germinated spores were sequenced and analyzed. More than 60 million high-quality transcript reads were generated from these two groups using RNA-Seq technology. After assembly, 2756 and 2690 unigenes were identified, respectively, and subsequently annotated based on known proteins. After analysis of differentially expressed genes, 66 genes were identified to be differentially expressed (P ≤ 0.05) between these two groups. A protein phosphatase-associated gene was first identified to be significantly up-regulated as determined by RNA-Seq and immunoblot analysis, indicating that dephosphorylation might potentially contribute to microsporidia germination. The DEGs that encode proteins involved in glycometabolism, spore wall proteins and ricin B lectin of N. bombycis were also analyzed. Gene Ontology and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes analyses revealed genes responsible for some specific biological functions and processes. The datasets generated in this study provide a basic characterization of the transcriptome changes in N. bombycis during germination. The analysis of transcriptome data and identification of certain functional genes which are robust candidate genes related to germination will help to provide a deep understanding of spore germination and invasion. PMID:26837419

  12. ROS Involves the Fungicidal Actions of Thymol against Spores of Aspergillus flavus via the Induction of Nitric Oxide

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Qingshan; Zhou, Wei; Li, Hongbo; Hu, Liangbin; Mo, Haizhen

    2016-01-01

    Aspergillus flavus is a well-known pathogenic fungus for both crops and human beings. The acquisition of resistance to azoles by A. flavus is leading to more failures occurring in the prevention of infection by A. flavus. In this study, we found that thymol, one of the major chemical constituents of the essential oil of Monarda punctate, had efficient fungicidal activity against A. flavus and led to sporular lysis. Further studies indicated that thymol treatment induced the generation of both ROS and NO in spores, whereas NO accumulation was far later than ROS accumulation in response to thymol. By blocking ROS production with the inhibitors of NADPH oxidase, NO generation was also significantly inhibited in the presence of thymol, which indicated that ROS induced NO generation in A. flavus in response to thymol treatment. Moreover, the removal of either ROS or NO attenuated lysis and death of spores exposed to thymol. The addition of SNP (exogenous NO donor) eliminated the protective effects of the inhibitors of NADPH oxidase on thymol-induced lysis and death of spores. Taken together, it could be concluded that ROS is involved in spore death induced by thymol via the induction of NO. PMID:27196096

  13. Immunolocalization of an Alternative Respiratory Chain in Antonospora (Paranosema) locustae Spores: Mitosomes Retain Their Role in Microsporidial Energy Metabolism ▿

    PubMed Central

    Dolgikh, Viacheslav V.; Senderskiy, Igor V.; Pavlova, Olga A.; Naumov, Anton M.; Beznoussenko, Galina V.

    2011-01-01

    Microsporidia are a group of fungus-related intracellular parasites with severely reduced metabolic machinery. They lack canonical mitochondria, a Krebs cycle, and a respiratory chain but possess genes encoding glycolysis enzymes, a glycerol phosphate shuttle, and ATP/ADP carriers to import host ATP. The recent finding of alternative oxidase genes in two clades suggests that microsporidial mitosomes may retain an alternative respiratory pathway. We expressed the fragments of mitochondrial chaperone Hsp70 (mitHsp70), mitochondrial glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (mitG3PDH), and alternative oxidase (AOX) from the microsporidium Antonospora (Paranosema) locustae in Escherichia coli. Immunoblotting with antibodies against recombinant polypeptides demonstrated specific accumulation of both metabolic enzymes in A. locustae spores. At the same time comparable amounts of mitochondrial Hsp70 were found in spores and in stages of intracellular development as well. Immunoelectron microscopy of ultrathin cryosections of spores confirmed mitosomal localization of the studied proteins. Small amounts of enzymes of an alternative respiratory chain in merogonial and early sporogonial stages, alongside their accumulation in mature spores, suggest conspicuous changes in components and functions of mitosomes during the life cycle of microsporidia and the important role of these organelles in parasite energy metabolism, at least at the final stages of sporogenesis. PMID:21296913

  14. ROS Involves the Fungicidal Actions of Thymol against Spores of Aspergillus flavus via the Induction of Nitric Oxide.

    PubMed

    Shen, Qingshan; Zhou, Wei; Li, Hongbo; Hu, Liangbin; Mo, Haizhen

    2016-01-01

    Aspergillus flavus is a well-known pathogenic fungus for both crops and human beings. The acquisition of resistance to azoles by A. flavus is leading to more failures occurring in the prevention of infection by A. flavus. In this study, we found that thymol, one of the major chemical constituents of the essential oil of Monarda punctate, had efficient fungicidal activity against A. flavus and led to sporular lysis. Further studies indicated that thymol treatment induced the generation of both ROS and NO in spores, whereas NO accumulation was far later than ROS accumulation in response to thymol. By blocking ROS production with the inhibitors of NADPH oxidase, NO generation was also significantly inhibited in the presence of thymol, which indicated that ROS induced NO generation in A. flavus in response to thymol treatment. Moreover, the removal of either ROS or NO attenuated lysis and death of spores exposed to thymol. The addition of SNP (exogenous NO donor) eliminated the protective effects of the inhibitors of NADPH oxidase on thymol-induced lysis and death of spores. Taken together, it could be concluded that ROS is involved in spore death induced by thymol via the induction of NO. PMID:27196096

  15. Carotenoids present in halotolerant Bacillus spore formers.

    PubMed

    Duc, Le H; Fraser, Paul D; Tam, Nguyen K M; Cutting, Simon M

    2006-02-01

    Six isolates of pigmented spore-forming bacteria were recovered from human faeces from subjects in Vietnam. 16S rRNA analysis demonstrated close association with known pigmented Bacillus species. All isolates were able to tolerate growth on 8% NaCl and were resistant to arsenate, characteristics that make them most related to Bacillus indicus. Two visible pigments were apparent, a yellow pigment found in vegetative cells and an orange pigment found only in spores. We used high-performance liquid chromatography to characterize and quantify these pigments and found them to be carotenoids. The biosynthetic pathway that generates them branches with one that could lead to the spore-associated orange pigmentation. Although these bacteria were found in faeces, the seafood-rich diet of Vietnam and the recovery of other pigmented Bacillus species from seafood and marine environments makes it highly probable that the true origin of these bacteria is from ingested seafood. PMID:16448498

  16. Back-trajectory modelling and DNA-based species-specific detection methods allow tracking of fungal spore transport in air masses.

    PubMed

    Grinn-Gofroń, Agnieszka; Sadyś, Magdalena; Kaczmarek, Joanna; Bednarz, Aleksandra; Pawłowska, Sylwia; Jedryczka, Malgorzata

    2016-11-15

    Recent advances in molecular detection of living organisms facilitate the introduction of novel methods to studies of the transport of fungal spores over large distances. Monitoring the migration of airborne fungi using microscope based spore identification is limited when different species produce very similar spores. In our study, DNA-based monitoring with the use of species-specific probes allowed us to track the aerial movements of two important fungal pathogens of oilseed rape (Brassica napus L.), i.e., Leptosphaeria maculans and Leptosphaeria biglobosa, which have identical spore shape and size. The fungi were identified using dual-labelled fluorescent probes that were targeted to a β-tubulin gene fragment of either Leptosphaeria species. Spore identification by Real-Time PCR techniques capable of detecting minute amounts of DNA of selected fungal species was combined with back-trajectory analysis, allowing the tracking of past movements of air masses using the Hybrid Single Particle Lagrangian Integrated Trajectory model. Over a study period spanning the previous decade (2006-2015) we investigated two specific events relating to the long distance transport of Leptosphaeria spp. spores to Szczecin in North-West Poland. Based on the above mentioned methods and the results obtained with the additional spore sampler located in nearby Szczecin, and operating at the ground level in an oilseed rape field, we have demonstrated that on both occasions the L. biglobosa spores originated from the Jutland Peninsula. This is the first successful attempt to combine analysis of back-trajectories of air masses with DNA-based identification of economically important pathogens of oilseed rape in Europe. In our studies, the timing of L. biglobosa ascospore dispersal in the air was unlikely to result in the infection of winter oilseed rape grown as a crop plant. However, the fungus could infect other host plants, such as vegetable brassicas, cruciferous weeds, spring rapeseed

  17. Factors affecting spore germination in algae - review.

    PubMed

    Agrawal, S C

    2009-01-01

    This review surveys whatever little is known on the influence of different environmental factors like light, temperature, nutrients, chemicals (such as plant hormones, vitamins, etc.), pH of the medium, biotic factors (such as algal extracellular substances, algal concentration, bacterial extracellular products, animal grazing and animal extracellular products), water movement, water stress, antibiotics, UV light, X-rays, gamma-rays, and pollution on the spore germination in algae. The work done on the dormancy of algal spores and on the role of vegetative cells in tolerating environmental stress is also incorporated. PMID:19826917

  18. Bacterial spores and chemical sporicidal agents.

    PubMed Central

    Russell, A D

    1990-01-01

    Bacterial spores are among the most resistant of all living cells to biocides, although the response depends on the stage of sporulation. The development of resistance to some agents such as chlorhexidine occurs much earlier in sporulation than does resistance to glutaraldehyde, which is a very late event. During germination or outgrowth or both, resistance is lost and the cells become as susceptible to biocides as nonsporulating bacteria. Mechanisms of spore resistance to, and the action of, biocides are discussed, and possible means of enhancing antispore activity are considered. The clinical and other uses of sporicidal and sporostatic chemical agents are described. Images PMID:2187595

  19. High-Resolution Spore Coat Architecture and Assembly of Bacillus Spores

    SciTech Connect

    Malkin, A J; Elhadj, S; Plomp, M

    2011-03-14

    Elucidating the molecular architecture of bacterial and cellular surfaces and its structural dynamics is essential to understanding mechanisms of pathogenesis, immune response, physicochemical interactions, environmental resistance, and provide the means for identifying spore formulation and processing attributes. I will discuss the application of in vitro atomic force microscopy (AFM) for studies of high-resolution coat architecture and assembly of several Bacillus spore species. We have demonstrated that bacterial spore coat structures are phylogenetically and growth medium determined. We have proposed that strikingly different species-dependent coat structures of bacterial spore species are a consequence of sporulation media-dependent nucleation and crystallization mechanisms that regulate the assembly of the outer spore coat. Spore coat layers were found to exhibit screw dislocations and two-dimensional nuclei typically observed on inorganic and macromolecular crystals. This presents the first case of non-mineral crystal growth patterns being revealed for a biological organism, which provides an unexpected example of nature exploiting fundamental materials science mechanisms for the morphogenetic control of biological ultrastructures. We have discovered and validated, distinctive formulation-specific high-resolution structural spore coat and dimensional signatures of B. anthracis spores (Sterne strain) grown in different formulation condition. We further demonstrated that measurement of the dimensional characteristics of B. anthracis spores provides formulation classification and sample matching with high sensitivity and specificity. I will present data on the development of an AFM-based immunolabeling technique for the proteomic mapping of macromolecular structures on the B. anthracis surfaces. These studies demonstrate that AFM can probe microbial surface architecture, environmental dynamics and the life cycle of bacterial and cellular systems at near

  20. Bacterial communities in termite fungus combs are comprised of consistent gut deposits and contributions from the environment.

    PubMed

    Otani, Saria; Hansen, Lars H; Sørensen, Søren J; Poulsen, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Fungus-growing termites (subfamily Macrotermitinae) mix plant forage with asexual spores of their plant-degrading fungal symbiont Termitomyces in their guts and deposit this blend in fungus comb structures, within which the plant matter is degraded. As Termitomyces grows, it produces nodules with asexual spores, which the termites feed on. Since all comb material passes through termite guts, it is inevitable that gut bacteria are also deposited in the comb, but it has remained unknown which bacteria are deposited and whether distinct comb bacterial communities are sustained. Using high-throughput sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene, we explored the bacterial community compositions of 33 fungus comb samples from four termite species (three genera) collected at four South African geographic locations in 2011 and 2013. We identified 33 bacterial phyla, with Firmicutes, Bacteroidetes, Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria, and Candidate division TM7 jointly accounting for 92 % of the reads. Analyses of gut microbiotas from 25 of the 33 colonies showed that dominant fungus comb taxa originate from the termite gut. While gut communities were consistent between 2011 and 2013, comb community compositions shifted over time. These shifts did not appear to be due to changes in the taxa present, but rather due to differences in the relative abundances of primarily gut-derived bacteria within fungus combs. This indicates that fungus comb microbiotas are largely termite species-specific due to major contributions from gut deposits and also that environment affects which gut bacteria dominate comb communities at a given point in time. PMID:26518432

  1. Spore Cortex Hydrolysis Precedes Dipicolinic Acid Release during Clostridium difficile Spore Germination

    PubMed Central

    Francis, Michael B.; Allen, Charlotte A.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Bacterial spore germination is a process whereby a dormant spore returns to active, vegetative growth, and this process has largely been studied in the model organism Bacillus subtilis. In B. subtilis, the initiation of germinant receptor-mediated spore germination is divided into two genetically separable stages. Stage I is characterized by the release of dipicolinic acid (DPA) from the spore core. Stage II is characterized by cortex degradation, and stage II is activated by the DPA released during stage I. Thus, DPA release precedes cortex hydrolysis during B. subtilis spore germination. Here, we investigated the timing of DPA release and cortex hydrolysis during Clostridium difficile spore germination and found that cortex hydrolysis precedes DPA release. Inactivation of either the bile acid germinant receptor, cspC, or the cortex hydrolase, sleC, prevented both cortex hydrolysis and DPA release. Because both cortex hydrolysis and DPA release during C. difficile spore germination are dependent on the presence of the germinant receptor and the cortex hydrolase, the release of DPA from the core may rely on the osmotic swelling of the core upon cortex hydrolysis. These results have implications for the hypothesized glycine receptor and suggest that the initiation of germinant receptor-mediated C. difficile spore germination proceeds through a novel germination pathway. IMPORTANCE Clostridium difficile infects antibiotic-treated hosts and spreads between hosts as a dormant spore. In a host, spores germinate to the vegetative form that produces the toxins necessary for disease. C. difficile spore germination is stimulated by certain bile acids and glycine. We recently identified the bile acid germinant receptor as the germination-specific, protease-like CspC. CspC is likely cortex localized, where it can transmit the bile acid signal to the cortex hydrolase, SleC. Due to the differences in location of CspC compared to the Bacillus subtilis germinant

  2. Morphological, molecular and ecological aspects of the South American hypogeous fungus Alpova austroalnicola sp. nov.

    PubMed

    Nouhra, Eduardo R; Dominguez, Laura S; Becerra, Alejandra G; Trappe, James M

    2005-01-01

    Field studies in Argentina's Yunga District revealed Alpova austroalnicola sp. nov., a hypogeous fungus associated with Alnus acuminata ssp. acuminata. Morphological and molecular studies based on amplification and sequencing of the nuclear LSU rDNA gene showed its unique identity within Alpova. Related genera included in the analyses were Boletus edulis, Rhizopogon spp., Suillus luteus and Truncocolumella citrina. Additional observations of animal diggings around the sites and microscopic examination of fecal pellets of the nine-banded armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus novemcinctus) indicate A. austroalnicola is consumed and its spores dispersed by animals. PMID:16392248

  3. Greenhouse germination and characterization of Synchytrium solstitiale resting spores

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Synchytrium solstitiale was evaluated for suitability in biological control of yellow starthisle (YST). A protocol was developed for maintenance of S. solstitiale in galled tissue under greenhouse conditions. Recently, protocol has been developed for germination of resting spores. Resting spores ...

  4. Surface tension propulsion of fungal spores by use of microdroplets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Noblin, Xavier; Yang, Sylvia; Dumais, Jacques

    2010-11-01

    Most basidiomycete fungi (such as edible mushrooms) actively eject their spores. The process begins with the condensation of a water droplet at the base of the spore. The fusion of the droplet onto the spore creates a momentum that propels the spore forward. The use of surface tension for spore ejection offers a new paradigm to perform work at small length scales. However, this mechanism of force generation remains poorly understood. To elucidate how fungal spores make effective use of surface tension, we performed high-speed video imaging of spore ejection in Auricularia auricula and Sporobolomyces yeast, along with a detailed mechanical analysis of the spore ejection. We developed an explicit relation for the conversion of surface energy into kinetic energy during the coalescence process. The relation was validated with a simple artificial system.

  5. Decontamination of Bacillus anthracis Spores: Evaluation of Various Disinfectants

    PubMed Central

    Heninger, Sara J.; Anderson, Christine A.; Beltz, Gerald; Onderdonk, Andrew B.

    2009-01-01

    The present study compares the efficacy of various disinfectants against Bacillus anthracis spores. While Bleach Rite® and 10% bleach reduce spore numbers by 90% within 10 minutes, a long contact time is required for complete disinfection. By contrast, although SporGon® did not initially reduce the number of spores as quickly as Bleach Rite or 10% bleach, shorter contact times were required for complete eradication of viable spores. PMID:20967138

  6. Seasonal fungus prevalence inside and outside of domestic environments in the subtropical climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuo, Yu-Mei; Li, Chin-Shan

    Airborne fungi were collected using the N6 Andersen sampler at 1-month intervals for I yr inside and outside of six apartments in Taipei. It was shown that seasonal variations of indoor and outdoor fungus number concentrations were remarkable and indoor and outdoor air spore counts varied considerably from residence to residence. The geometric mean concentrations of indoor and outdoor fungi were found to be higher than 1000 CFU m -3 during the summer months and abruptly decreased to below 100 CFU m -3 in the winter. A high correlation coefficient was found between fungus concentrations in living rooms and outdoors. Moreover, the ratios of indoor to outdoor fungus concentrations (0.21-3.81) were too low to indicate the presence of any indoor fungus sources. A large variety of mold genera was isolated, and Aspergillus, Penicillium, Cladosporium, and yeast were observed to be predominant. Indoors, Penicillium showed the highest concentrations in the summer and autumn months, while Asperyillus and Cladosporium were also observed frequently. The outside air was dominated by Asperyillus, Penicillium, and Cladosporium in spring, summer, and autumn, but by Penicillium and yeast during winter months. In addition, Cladosporium was found to be absent indoors and outdoors in the winter.

  7. Photocontrol of the Germination of Onoclea Spores

    PubMed Central

    Towill, Leslie R.; Ikuma, Hiroshi

    1973-01-01

    Light stimulates the germination of spores of the fern Onoclea sensibilis L. At high dosages, broad band red, far red, and blue light promote maximal germination. Maximal sensitivity to these spectral regions is attained from 6 to 48 hours of dark presoaking, and all induced rapid germination after a lag of 30 to 36 hours. Maximal germination is attained approximately 70 hours after irradiation. Dose response curves suggest log linearity. The action spectrum to cause 50% germination shows that spores are most sensitive to irradiation in the red region (620-680 nm) with an incident energy less than 1000 ergs cm−2; sensitivity decreases towards both shorter and longer wavelengths. Although the action spectrum is suggestive of phytochrome involvement, photoreversibility of germination between red and far red light has not been demonstrated with Onoclea spores. An absorption spectrum of the intact spores reveals the presence of chlorophylls and carotenoids. Since the presence of 3-(3,4-dichlorophenyl)-1,1-dimethylurea does not inhibit germination, it is concluded that photosynthesis does not play a role in the germination process. PMID:16658448

  8. Real time viability detection of bacterial spores

    DOEpatents

    Vanderberg, Laura A.; Herdendorf, Timothy J.; Obiso, Richard J.

    2003-07-29

    This invention relates to a process for detecting the presence of viable bacterial spores in a sample and to a spore detection system, the process including placing a sample in a germination medium for a period of time sufficient for commitment of any present viable bacterial spores to occur, mixing the sample with a solution of a lanthanide capable of forming a fluorescent complex with dipicolinic acid, and, measuring the sample for the presence of dipicolinic acid, and the system including a germination chamber having inlets from a sample chamber, a germinant chamber and a bleach chamber, the germination chamber further including an outlet through a filtering means, the outlet connected to a detection chamber, the detection chamber having an inlet from a fluorescence promoting metal chamber and the detection chamber including a spectral excitation source and a means of measuring emission spectra from a sample, the detection chamber further connected to a waste chamber. A germination reaction mixture useful for promoting commitment of any viable bacterial spores in a sample including a combination of L-alanine, L-asparagine and D-glucose is also described.

  9. Airborne myxomycete spores: detection using molecular techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kamono, Akiko; Kojima, Hisaya; Matsumoto, Jun; Kawamura, Kimitaka; Fukui, Manabu

    2009-01-01

    Myxomycetes are organisms characterized by a life cycle that includes a fruiting body stage. Myxomycete fruiting bodies contain spores, and wind dispersal of the spores is considered important for this organism to colonize new areas. In this study, the presence of airborne myxomycetes and the temporal changes in the myxomycete composition of atmospheric particles (aerosols) were investigated with a polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based method for Didymiaceae and Physaraceae. Twenty-one aerosol samples were collected on the roof of a three-story building located in Sapporo, Hokkaido Island, northern Japan. PCR analysis of DNA extracts from the aerosol samples indicated the presence of airborne myxomycetes in all the samples, except for the one collected during the snowfall season. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) analysis of the PCR products showed seasonally varying banding patterns. The detected DGGE bands were subjected to sequence analyses, and four out of nine obtained sequences were identical to those of fruiting body samples collected in Hokkaido Island. It appears that the difference in the fruiting period of each species was correlated with the seasonal changes in the myxomycete composition of the aerosols. Molecular evidence shows that newly formed spores are released and dispersed in the air, suggesting that wind-driven dispersal of spores is an important process in the life history of myxomycetes. This study is the first to detect airborne myxomycetes with the use of molecular ecological analyses and to characterize their seasonal distribution.

  10. Imaging bacterial spores by soft-x-ray microscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Stead, A.D.; Ford, T.W.; Judge, J.

    1997-04-01

    Bacterial spores are able to survive dehydration, but neither the physiological nor structural basis of this have been fully elucidated. Furthermore, once hydrated, spores often require activation before they will germinate. Several treatments can be used to activate spores, but in the case of Bacillus subtlis the most effective is heat treatment. The physiological mechanism associated with activation is also not understood, but some workers suggest that the loss of calcium from the spores may be critical. However, just prior to germination, the spores change from being phase bright to phase dark when viewed by light microscopy. Imaging spores by soft x-ray microscopy is possible without fixation. Thus, in contrast to electron microscopy, it is possible to compare the structure of dehydrated and hydrated spores in a manner not possible previously. A further advantage is that it is possible to monitor individual spores by phase contrast light microscopy immediately prior to imaging with soft x-rays; whereas, with both electron microscopy and biochemical studies, it is a population of spores being studied without knowledge of the phase characteristics of individual spores. This study has therefore tried to compare dehydrated and hydrated spores and to determine if there is a mass loss from individual spores as they pass the transition from being phase bright to phase dark.

  11. Requirements for in vitro germination of Paenibacillus larvae spores.

    PubMed

    Alvarado, Israel; Phui, Andy; Elekonich, Michelle M; Abel-Santos, Ernesto

    2013-03-01

    Paenibacillus larvae is the causative agent of American foulbrood (AFB), a disease affecting honey bee larvae. First- and second-instar larvae become infected when they ingest food contaminated with P. larvae spores. The spores then germinate into vegetative cells that proliferate in the midgut of the honey bee. Although AFB affects honey bees only in the larval stage, P. larvae spores can be distributed throughout the hive. Because spore germination is critical for AFB establishment, we analyzed the requirements for P. larvae spore germination in vitro. We found that P. larvae spores germinated only in response to l-tyrosine plus uric acid under physiologic pH and temperature conditions. This suggests that the simultaneous presence of these signals is necessary for spore germination in vivo. Furthermore, the germination profiles of environmentally derived spores were identical to those of spores from a biochemically typed strain. Because l-tyrosine and uric acid are the only required germinants in vitro, we screened amino acid and purine analogs for their ability to act as antagonists of P. larvae spore germination. Indole and phenol, the side chains of tyrosine and tryptophan, strongly inhibited P. larvae spore germination. Methylation of the N-1 (but not the C-3) position of indole eliminated its ability to inhibit germination. Identification of the activators and inhibitors of P. larvae spore germination provides a basis for developing new tools to control AFB. PMID:23264573

  12. Classification of Streptomyces Spore Surfaces into Five Groups

    PubMed Central

    Dietz, Alma; Mathews, John

    1971-01-01

    Streptomyces spores surfaces have been classified into five groups, smooth, warty, spiny, hairy, and rugose, by examination of carbon replicas of spores with the transmission electron microscope and by direct examination of spores with the scanning electron microscope. Images PMID:4928607

  13. [Sporogenesis and spores of Equisetum bogotense (Equisetaceae) from mountain areas of Colombia].

    PubMed

    Rincón-Baron, Edgar Javier; Torres, Gerardo Andrés; Rolleri, Cristina Hilda

    2013-09-01

    Studies on some reproductive traits in Equisetum species are scarce and valuable to understand species distribution. Therefore, a detailed study of the sporogenesis process and spore development in E. bogotense is presented, with an analysis of the main events during meiosis, maturation of spores, spore wall ultrastructure, orbicules and elaters. Specimens were collected from 500 to 4500 m in Cauca, Colombia. Strobili at different maturation stages were fixed, dehydrated, embedded in resin, and ultra-microtome obtained sections were stained with Toluidine blue. Observations were made with optical microscopy with differential interference contrast illumination technique (DIC), transmission and scanning electron microscopy (TEM and SEM). Ultrathin sections (70-80 microm) for TEM observations were stained with uranyl acetate and lead citrate; while samples for SEM observations, were fixed, dehydrated in 2.2-dimethoxypropane and dried at critical point as in standard methods. Strobili have numerous mature sporangiophores, each one with a peltate structure, the scutellum, bearing five-six sessile sporangia attached to the axis of strobilus by the manubrium. Immature sporocytes (spore mother cells) are tightly packed within the young sporangia. The sporocytes quickly undergo meiosis, by passing the stage of archesporium and give origin to tetrads of spores. The tapetum loses histological integrity during early stages of sporogenesis, intrudes as a plasmodial mass into the cavity of the sporangium, partially surrounding premeiotic sporocytes, and then, tetrads and adult spores. The tapetum disintegrates towards the end of the sporogenesis, leaving spores free within the sporangial cavity. Spores present several cytological changes that allow them to achieve greater size and increase the number of plastids, before reaching the adult stage. Sporoderm includes three layers external to the cytoplasmic membrane of the spore cell, and they are pseudoendospore, exospore and

  14. Single-spore elemental analyses indicate that dipicolinic acid-deficient Bacillus subtilis spores fail to accumulate calcium.

    PubMed

    Hintze, Paul E; Nicholson, Wayne L

    2010-06-01

    Dipicolinic acid (pyridine-2,6-carboxylic acid; DPA) is a major component of bacterial spores and has been shown to be an important determinant of spore resistance. In the core of dormant Bacillus subtilis spores, DPA is associated with divalent calcium in a 1:1 chelate (Ca-DPA). Spores excrete Ca-DPA during germination, but it is unknown whether Ca and DPA are imported separately or together into the developing spore. Elemental analysis by scanning electron microscopy-energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (SEM-EDS) of wild-type spores and mutant spores lacking the ability to synthesize DPA showed that DPA-less spores also lacked calcium, suggesting that the two compounds may be co-imported. PMID:20396869

  15. Genome Diversity of Spore-Forming Firmicutes

    PubMed Central

    Galperin, Michael Y.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Formation of heat-resistant endospores is a specific property of the members of the phylum Firmicutes (low-G+C Gram-positive bacteria). It is found in representatives of four different classes of Firmicutes: Bacilli, Clostridia, Erysipelotrichia, and Negativicutes, which all encode similar sets of core sporulation proteins. Each of these classes also includes non-spore-forming organisms that sometimes belong to the same genus or even species as their spore-forming relatives. This chapter reviews the diversity of the members of phylum Firmicutes, its current taxonomy, and the status of genome sequencing projects for various subgroups within the phylum. It also discusses the evolution of the Firmicutes from their apparently spore-forming common ancestor and the independent loss of sporulation genes in several different lineages (staphylococci, streptococci, listeria, lactobacilli, ruminococci) in the course of their adaptation to the saprophytic lifestyle in nutrient-rich environment. It argues that systematics of Firmicutes is a rapidly developing area of research that benefits from the evolutionary approaches to the ever-increasing amount of genomic and phenotypic data and allows arranging these data into a common framework. Later the Bacillus filaments begin to prepare for spore formation. In their homogenous contents strongly refracting bodies appear. From each of these bodies develops an oblong or shortly cylindrical, strongly refracting, dark-rimmed spore. Ferdinand Cohn. 1876. Untersuchungen über Bacterien. IV. Beiträge zur Biologie der Bacillen. Beiträge zur Biologie der Pflanzen, vol. 2, pp. 249–276. (Studies on the biology of the bacilli. In: Milestones in Microbiology: 1546 to 1940. Translated and edited by Thomas D. Brock. Prentice-Hall, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, 1961, pp. 49–56). PMID:26184964

  16. Development of an approach to analyze the interaction between Nosema bombycis (microsporidia) deproteinated chitin spore coats and spore wall proteins.

    PubMed

    Yang, Donglin; Dang, Xiaoqun; Tian, Rui; Long, Mengxian; Li, Chunfeng; Li, Tian; Chen, Jie; Li, Zhi; Pan, Guoqing; Zhou, Zeyang

    2014-01-01

    Nosema bombycis is an obligate intracellular parasite of the Bombyx mori insect. The spore wall of N. bombycis is composed of an electron-dense proteinaceous outer layer and an electron-transparent chitinous inner layer, and the spore wall is connected to the plasma membrane. In this study, the deproteinated chitin spore coats (DCSCs) were acquired by boiling N. bombycis in 1M NaOH. Under a transmission electron microscope, the chitin spore coat resembles a loosely curled ring with strong refractivity; organelles and nuclei were not observed inside the spore. The anti-SWP25, 26, 30 and 32 antibodies were used to detect whether spore wall proteins within the total soluble and mature spore proteins could bind to the DCSCs. Furthermore, a chitin binding assay showed that within the total soluble and mature spore proteins, the SWP26, SWP30 and SWP32 spore wall proteins, bound to the deproteinated chitin spore coats, although SWP25 was incapable of this interaction. Moreover, after the DCSCs were incubated with the alkali-soluble proteins, the latter were obtained by treating N. bombycis with 0.1M NaOH. Following this treatment, SWP32 was still capable of binding the DCSCs, while SWP26 and SWP30 were unable to bind. Collectively, the DCSCs are useful for investigating the arrangement of spore wall proteins, and they shed light on how the microsporidia spore wall is self-assembled. PMID:24161881

  17. Apparatus and method for automated monitoring of airborne bacterial spores

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ponce, Adrian (Inventor)

    2009-01-01

    An apparatus and method for automated monitoring of airborne bacterial spores. The apparatus is provided with an air sampler, a surface for capturing airborne spores, a thermal lysis unit to release DPA from bacterial spores, a source of lanthanide ions, and a spectrometer for excitation and detection of the characteristic fluorescence of the aromatic molecules in bacterial spores complexed with lanthanide ions. In accordance with the method: computer-programmed steps allow for automation of the apparatus for the monitoring of airborne bacterial spores.

  18. Sources of Variability in the Measurement of Fungal Spore Yields

    PubMed Central

    Smith, C. S.; Slade, S. J.; Nordheim, E. V.; Cascino, J. J.; Harris, R. F.; Andrews, J. H.

    1988-01-01

    Variability in the production of fungal spores and in the measurement of spore yields was investigated in four species of fungi: Colletotrichum gloeosporioides, Colletotrichum coccodes, Colletotrichum phomoides, and Acremonium strictum. When the fungi were grown on solid medium in microplates and spore yields were measured by counting the subsamples with a hemacytometer, the variability among hemacytometer squares was always the largest source of variation, accounting for 51 to 91% of the total variation. Variability among replicate cultures and results of repeat experiments were generally also significant. The effect of square-to-square variability on the precision of spore yield measurement was minimized by counting a moderate number (ca. 30) of squares per culture. Culture-to-culture variability limited the practical precision of spore production measurements to a 95% confidence interval of approximately the mean ± 25%. We provide guidelines for determining the number of replicate cultures required to attain this or other degrees of precision. Particle counter-derived spore counts and counts based on spore weights were much less variable than were hemacytometer counts, but they did not improve spore production estimates very much because of culture-to-culture variability. Results obtained by both of these methods differed from those obtained with a hemacytometer; particle counter measurements required a correction for spore pairs, while the relationship between spore weights and spore counts changed as the cultures aged. PMID:16347653

  19. Regulation of trehalose metabolism by Streptomyces griseus spores.

    PubMed Central

    McBride, M J; Ensign, J C

    1990-01-01

    Spores of Streptomyces griseus contain trehalose and trehalase, but trehalose is not readily hydrolyzed until spore germination is initiated. Trehalase in crude extracts of spores, germinated spores, and mycelia of S. griseus had a pH optimum of approximately 6.2, had a Km value for trehalose of approximately 11 mM, and was most active in buffers having ionic strengths of 50 to 200 mM. Inhibitors or activators or trehalase activity were not detected in extracts of spores or mycelia. Several lines of evidence indicated that trehalose and trehalase are both located in the spore cytoplasm. Spores retained their trehalose and most of their trehalase activity following brief exposure to dilute acid. Protoplasts formed by enzymatic removal of the spore walls in buffer containing high concentrations of solutes also retained their trehalose and trehalase activity. Protoplasts formed in buffer containing lower levels of solutes contained low levels of trehalose. The mechanism by which trehalose metabolism is regulated in S. griseus spores is unresolved. A low level of hydration of the cytoplasm of the dormant spores and an increased level of hydration during germination may account for the apparent inactivity of trehalase in dormant spores and the rapid hydrolysis of trehalose upon initiation of germination. Images PMID:2113908

  20. Source strength of fungal spore aerosolization from moldy building material

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Górny, Rafał L.; Reponen, Tiina; Grinshpun, Sergey A.; Willeke, Klaus

    The release of Aspergillus versicolor, Cladosporium cladosporioides, and Penicillium melinii spores from agar and ceiling tile surfaces was tested under different controlled environmental conditions using a newly designed and constructed aerosolization chamber. This study revealed that all the investigated parameters, such as fungal species, air velocity above the surface, texture of the surface, and vibration of contaminated material, affected the fungal spore release. It was found that typical indoor air currents can release up to 200 spores cm -2 from surfaces with fungal spores during 30-min experiments. The release of fungal spores from smooth agar surfaces was found to be inadequate for accurately predicting the emission from rough ceiling tile surfaces because the air turbulence increases the spore release from a rough surface. A vibration at a frequency of 1 Hz at a power level of 14 W resulted in a significant increase in the spore release rate. The release appears to depend on the morphology of the fungal colonies grown on ceiling tile surfaces including the thickness of conidiophores, the length of spore chains, and the shape of spores. The spores were found to be released continuously during each 30-min experiment. However, the release rate was usually highest during the first few minutes of exposure to air currents and mechanical vibration. About 71-88% of the spores released during a 30-min interval became airborne during the first 10 min.

  1. Monitoring Rates and Heterogeneity of High-Pressure Germination of Bacillus Spores by Phase-Contrast Microscopy of Individual Spores

    PubMed Central

    Kong, Lingbo; Doona, Christopher J.; Setlow, Peter

    2014-01-01

    Germination of Bacillus spores with a high pressure (HP) of ∼150 MPa is via activation of spores' germinant receptors (GRs). The HP germination of multiple individual Bacillus subtilis spores in a diamond anvil cell (DAC) was monitored with phase-contrast microscopy. Major conclusions were that (i) >95% of wild-type spores germinated in 40 min in a DAC at ∼150 MPa and 37°C but individual spores' germination kinetics were heterogeneous; (ii) individual spores' HP germination kinetic parameters were similar to those of nutrient-triggered germination with a variable lag time (Tlag) prior to a period of the rapid release (ΔTrelease) of the spores' dipicolinic acid in a 1:1 chelate with Ca2+ (CaDPA); (iii) spore germination at 50 MPa had longer average Tlag values than that at ∼150 MPa, but the ΔTrelease values at the two pressures were identical and HPs of <10 MPa did not induce germination; (iv) B. subtilis spores that lacked the cortex-lytic enzyme CwlJ and that were germinated with an HP of 150 MPa exhibited average ΔTrelease values ∼15-fold longer than those for wild-type spores, but the two types of spores exhibited similar average Tlag values; and (v) the germination of wild-type spores given a ≥30-s 140-MPa HP pulse followed by a constant pressure of 1 MPa was the same as that of spores exposed to a constant pressure of 140 MPa that was continued for ≥35 min; (vi) however, after short 150-MPa HP pulses and incubation at 0.1 MPa (ambient pressure), spore germination stopped 5 to 10 min after the HP was released. These results suggest that an HP of ∼150 MPa for ≤30 s is sufficient to fully activate spores' GRs, which remain activated at 1 MPa but can deactivate at ambient pressure. PMID:24162576

  2. Activation and injury of Clostridium perfringens spores by alcohols.

    PubMed Central

    Craven, S E; Blankenship, L C

    1985-01-01

    The activation properties of Clostridium perfringens NCTC 8679 spores were demonstrated by increases in CFU after heating in water or aqueous alcohols. The temperature range for maximum activation, which was 70 to 80 degrees C in water, was lowered by the addition of alcohols. The response at a given temperature was dependent on the time of exposure and the alcohol concentration. The monohydric alcohols and some, but not all, of the polyhydric alcohols could activate spores at 37 degrees C. The concentration of a monohydric alcohol that produced optimal spore activation was inversely related to its lipophilic character. Spore injury, which was manifested as a dependence on lysozyme for germination and colony formation, occurred under some conditions of alcohol treatment that exceeded those for optimal spore activation. Treatment with aqueous solutions of monohydric alcohols effectively activated C. perfringens spores and suggests a hydrophobic site for spore activation. PMID:2864897

  3. Surface Display of Recombinant Proteins on Bacillus subtilis Spores

    PubMed Central

    Isticato, Rachele; Cangiano, Giuseppina; Tran, Hoa T.; Ciabattini, Annalisa; Medaglini, Donata; Oggioni, Marco R.; De Felice, Maurilio; Pozzi, Gianni; Ricca, Ezio

    2001-01-01

    We developed a novel surface display system based on the use of bacterial spores. A protein of the Bacillus subtilis spore coat, CotB, was found to be located on the spore surface and used as fusion partner to express the 459-amino-acid C-terminal fragment of the tetanus toxin (TTFC). Western, dot blot and fluorescent-activated cell sorting analyses were used to monitor TTFC surface expression on purified spores. We estimated that more than 1.5 × 103 TTFC molecules were exposed on the surface of each spore and recognized by TTFC-specific antibodies. The efficient surface presentation of the heterologous protein, together with the simple purification procedure and the high stability and safety record of B. subtilis spores, makes this spore-based display system a potentially powerful approach for surface expression of bioactive molecules. PMID:11591673

  4. Revival of biocide-treated spores of Bacillus subtilis.

    PubMed

    Williams, N D; Russell, A D

    1993-07-01

    Spores of Bacillus subtilis NCTC 8236 were treated with biocides and then subjected to various revival procedures. Sodium hydroxide (optimum concentration 25 mmol l-1) revived a small portion of glutaraldehyde-treated spores but not of spores exposed to formaldehyde, polyvinylpyrrolidone-iodine (PVP-I), Lugol's iodine, sodium hypochlorite or sodium dichloroisocyanurate (NaDCC). Post-treatment heat shock (at 70 degrees or 80 degrees C) increased the numbers of colony-forming units (cfu) of formaldehyde-injured spores. Coat-extraction procedures had the greatest effect on iodine-pretreated spores. The uptake of iodine and chlorine was more rapid and occurred to a greater extent with outgrowing, germinating and especially coat-deficient spores than with mature, resting spores. PMID:7690020

  5. Fern Spore Longevity in Saline Water: Can Sea Bottom Sediments Maintain a Viable Spore Bank?

    PubMed Central

    de Groot, G. Arjen; During, Heinjo

    2013-01-01

    Freshwater and marine sediments often harbor reservoirs of plant diaspores, from which germination and establishment may occur whenever the sediment falls dry. Therewith, they form valuable records of historical inter- and intraspecific diversity, and are increasingly exploited to facilitate diversity establishment in new or restored nature areas. Yet, while ferns may constitute a considerable part of a vegetation’s diversity and sediments are known to contain fern spores, little is known about their longevity, which may suffer from inundation and - in sea bottoms - salt stress. We tested the potential of ferns to establish from a sea or lake bottom, using experimental studies on spore survival and gametophyte formation, as well as a spore bank analysis on sediments from a former Dutch inland sea. Our experimental results revealed clear differences among species. For Asplenium scolopendrium and Gymnocarpium dryopteris, spore germination was not affected by inundated storage alone, but decreased with rising salt concentrations. In contrast, for Asplenium trichomanes subsp. quadrivalens germination decreased following inundation, but not in response to salt. Germination rates decreased with time of storage in saline water. Smaller and less viable gametophytes were produced when saline storage lasted for a year. Effects on germination and gametophyte development clearly differed among genotypes of A. scolopendrium. Spore bank analyses detected no viable spores in marine sediment layers. Only two very small gametophytes (identified as Thelypteris palustris via DNA barcoding) emerged from freshwater sediments. Both died before maturation. We conclude that marine, and likely even freshwater sediments, will generally be of little value for long-term storage of fern diversity. The development of any fern vegetation on a former sea floor will depend heavily on the deposition of spores onto the drained land by natural or artificial means of dispersal. PMID:24223951

  6. A continental view of pine-associated ectomycorrhizal fungal spore banks: a quiescent functional guild with a strong biogeographic pattern.

    PubMed

    Glassman, Sydney I; Peay, Kabir G; Talbot, Jennifer M; Smith, Dylan P; Chung, Judy A; Taylor, John W; Vilgalys, Rytas; Bruns, Thomas D

    2015-03-01

    Ecologists have long acknowledged the importance of seed banks; yet, despite the fact that many plants rely on mycorrhizal fungi for survival and growth, the structure of ectomycorrhizal (ECM) fungal spore banks remains poorly understood. The primary goal of this study was to assess the geographic structure in pine-associated ECM fungal spore banks across the North American continent. Soils were collected from 19 plots in forests across North America. Fresh soils were pyrosequenced for fungal internal transcribed spacer (ITS) amplicons. Adjacent soil cores were dried and bioassayed with pine seedlings, and colonized roots were pyrosequenced to detect resistant propagules of ECM fungi. The results showed that ECM spore banks correlated strongly with biogeographic location, but not with the identity of congeneric plant hosts. Minimal community overlap was found between resident ECM fungi vs those in spore banks, and spore bank assemblages were relatively simple and dominated by Rhizopogon, Wilcoxina, Cenococcum, Thelephora, Tuber, Laccaria and Suillus. Similar to plant seed banks, ECM fungal spore banks are, in general, depauperate, and represent a small and rare subset of the mature forest soil fungal community. Yet, they may be extremely important in fungal colonization after large-scale disturbances such as clear cuts and forest fires. PMID:25557275

  7. Decrease in optical density as a results of germination of Alicyclobacillus acidoterrestris spores under high hydrostatic pressure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Porębska, I.; Rutkowska, M.; Sokołowska, B.

    2015-01-01

    Alicyclobacillus acidoterrestris is a spore-forming bacterium, causing spoilage of juices. The spores of these bacteria have the ability to survive in the typical conditions used for thermal pasteurization. Therefore, the use of other techniques such as high hydrostatic pressure is considered for their inactivation. The effect of hydrostatic pressure of 200-500 MPa, at temperatures 4-50 °C for 15 min, on the dynamics of germination of A. acidoterrestris spores in apple juice and pH 4 buffer was studied. To estimate the share of germinated spores, the method of determining the optical density at a wavelength of 660 nm (OD660) was used. Parameters of hydrostatic pressure treatment used in this work affected the dynamics of germination of A. acidoterrestris spores in apple juice, and the temperature had the greatest effect. The results indicate that nutrients present in apple juice can promote the germination of A. acidoterrestris spores. This paper was presented at the 8th International Conference on High Pressure Bioscience & Biotechnology (HPBB 2014) in Nantes (France) 15-18 July 2014.

  8. Targeted Disruption of Melanin Biosynthesis Genes in the Human Pathogenic Fungus Lomentospora prolificans and Its Consequences for Pathogen Survival.

    PubMed

    Al-Laaeiby, Ayat; Kershaw, Michael J; Penn, Tina J; Thornton, Christopher R

    2016-01-01

    The dematiaceous (melanised) fungus Lomentospora (Scedosporium) prolificans is a life-threatening opportunistic pathogen of immunocompromised humans, resistant to anti-fungal drugs. Melanin has been shown to protect human pathogenic fungi against antifungal drugs, oxidative killing and environmental stresses. To determine the protective role of melanin in L. prolificans to oxidative killing (H₂O₂), UV radiation and the polyene anti-fungal drug amphotericin B, targeted gene disruption was used to generate mutants of the pathogen lacking the dihydroxynaphthalene (DHN)-melanin biosynthetic enzymes polyketide synthase (PKS1), tetrahydroxynapthalene reductase (4HNR) and scytalone dehydratase (SCD1). Infectious propagules (spores) of the wild-type strain 3.1 were black/brown, whereas spores of the PKS-deficient mutant ΔLppks1::hph were white. Complementation of the albino mutant ΔLppks1::hph restored the black-brown spore pigmentation, while the 4HNR-deficient mutant ΔLp4hnr::hph and SCD-deficient mutant ΔLpscd1::hph both produced orange-yellow spores. The mutants ΔLppks1::hph and ΔLp4hnr::hph showed significant reductions in spore survival following H₂O₂ treatment, while spores of ΔLpscd1::hph and the ΔLppks1::hph complemented strain ΔLppks1::hph:PKS showed spore survivals similar to strain 3.1. Spores of the mutants ΔLp4hnr::hph and ΔLpscd1::hph and complemented strain ΔLppks1::hph:PKS showed spore survivals similar to 3.1 following exposure to UV radiation, but survival of ΔLppks1::hph spores was significantly reduced compared to the wild-type strain. Strain 3.1 and mutants ΔLp4hnr::hph and ΔLppks1::hph:PKS were resistant to amphotericin B while, paradoxically, the PKS1- and SCD1-deficient mutants showed significant increases in growth in the presence of the antifungal drug. Taken together, these results show that while melanin plays a protective role in the survival of the pathogen to oxidative killing and UV radiation, melanin does not

  9. Targeted Disruption of Melanin Biosynthesis Genes in the Human Pathogenic Fungus Lomentospora prolificans and Its Consequences for Pathogen Survival

    PubMed Central

    Al-Laaeiby, Ayat; Kershaw, Michael J.; Penn, Tina J.; Thornton, Christopher R.

    2016-01-01

    The dematiaceous (melanised) fungus Lomentospora (Scedosporium) prolificans is a life-threatening opportunistic pathogen of immunocompromised humans, resistant to anti-fungal drugs. Melanin has been shown to protect human pathogenic fungi against antifungal drugs, oxidative killing and environmental stresses. To determine the protective role of melanin in L. prolificans to oxidative killing (H2O2), UV radiation and the polyene anti-fungal drug amphotericin B, targeted gene disruption was used to generate mutants of the pathogen lacking the dihydroxynaphthalene (DHN)-melanin biosynthetic enzymes polyketide synthase (PKS1), tetrahydroxynapthalene reductase (4HNR) and scytalone dehydratase (SCD1). Infectious propagules (spores) of the wild-type strain 3.1 were black/brown, whereas spores of the PKS-deficient mutant ΔLppks1::hph were white. Complementation of the albino mutant ΔLppks1::hph restored the black-brown spore pigmentation, while the 4HNR-deficient mutant ΔLp4hnr::hph and SCD-deficient mutant ΔLpscd1::hph both produced orange-yellow spores. The mutants ΔLppks1::hph and ΔLp4hnr::hph showed significant reductions in spore survival following H2O2 treatment, while spores of ΔLpscd1::hph and the ΔLppks1::hph complemented strain ΔLppks1::hph:PKS showed spore survivals similar to strain 3.1. Spores of the mutants ΔLp4hnr::hph and ΔLpscd1::hph and complemented strain ΔLppks1::hph:PKS showed spore survivals similar to 3.1 following exposure to UV radiation, but survival of ΔLppks1::hph spores was significantly reduced compared to the wild-type strain. Strain 3.1 and mutants ΔLp4hnr::hph and ΔLppks1::hph:PKS were resistant to amphotericin B while, paradoxically, the PKS1- and SCD1-deficient mutants showed significant increases in growth in the presence of the antifungal drug. Taken together, these results show that while melanin plays a protective role in the survival of the pathogen to oxidative killing and UV radiation, melanin does not contribute to

  10. CLOSTRIDIUM SPORE ATTACHMENT TO HUMAN CELLS

    SciTech Connect

    PANESSA-WARREN,B.; TORTORA,G.; WARREN,J.

    1997-08-10

    This paper uses high resolution scanning electron microscopy (SEM) with a LaB6 gun and the newest commercial field emission guns, to obtain high magnification images of intact clostridial spores throughout the activation/germination/outgrowth process. By high resolution SEM, the clostridial exosporial membrane can be seen to produce numerous delicate projections (following activation), that extend from the exosporial surface to a nutritive substrate (agar), or cell surface when anaerobically incubated in the presence of human cells (embryonic fibroblasts and colon carcinoma cells). Magnifications of 20,000 to 200,000Xs at accelerating voltages low enough to minimize or eliminate specimen damage (1--5 kV) have permitted the entire surface of C.sporogenes and C.difficile endospores to be examined during all stages of germination. The relationships between the spore and the agar or human cell surface were also clearly visible.

  11. Chemical syntheses of oligodeoxyribonucleotides containing spore photoproduct

    PubMed Central

    Jian, Yajun; Li, Lei

    2013-01-01

    5-(α-Thyminyl)-5,6-dihydrothymine, also called spore photoproduct or SP, is commonly found in the genomic DNA of UV irradiated bacterial endospores. Despite the fact that SP was discovered nearly 50 years ago, its biochemical impact is still largely unclear due to the difficulty to prepare SP containing oligonucleotide in high purity. Here, we report the first synthesis of the phosphoramidite derivative of dinucleotide SP TpT, which enables successful incorporation of SP TpT into oligodeoxyribonucleotides with high efficiency via standard solid phase synthesis. This result provides the scientific community a reliable means to prepare SP containing oligonucleotides, laying the foundation for future SP biochemical studies. Thermal denaturation studies of the SP containing oligonucleotide found that SP destabilizes the duplex by 10–20 kJ/mole, suggesting that its presence in the spore genomic DNA may alter the DNA local conformation. PMID:23506239

  12. Metal reduction by spores of Desulfotomaculum reducens.

    PubMed

    Junier, Pilar; Frutschi, Manon; Wigginton, Nicholas S; Schofield, Eleanor J; Bargar, John R; Bernier-Latmani, Rizlan

    2009-12-01

    The bioremediation of uranium-contaminated sites is designed to stimulate the activity of microorganisms able to catalyze the reduction of soluble U(VI) to the less soluble mineral UO(2). U(VI) reduction does not necessarily support growth in previously studied bacteria, but it typically involves viable vegetative cells and the presence of an appropriate electron donor. We characterized U(VI) reduction by the sulfate-reducing bacterium Desulfotomaculum reducens strain MI-1 grown fermentatively on pyruvate and observed that spores were capable of U(VI) reduction. Hydrogen gas - a product of pyruvate fermentation - rather than pyruvate, served as the electron donor. The presence of spent growth medium was required for the process, suggesting that an unknown factor produced by the cells was necessary for reduction. Ultrafiltration of the spent medium followed by U(VI) reduction assays revealed that the factor's molecular size was below 3 kDa. Pre-reduced spent medium displayed short-term U(VI) reduction activity, suggesting that the missing factor may be an electron shuttle, but neither anthraquinone-2,6-disulfonic acid nor riboflavin rescued spore activity in fresh medium. Spores of D. reducens also reduced Fe(III)-citrate under experimental conditions similar to those for U(VI) reduction. This is the first report of a bacterium able to reduce metals while in a sporulated state and underscores the novel nature of the mechanism of metal reduction by strain MI-1. PMID:19601961

  13. Characterization of aerobic spore-forming bacteria associated with industrial dairy processing environments and product spoilage.

    PubMed

    Lücking, Genia; Stoeckel, Marina; Atamer, Zeynep; Hinrichs, Jörg; Ehling-Schulz, Monika

    2013-09-01

    Due to changes in the design of industrial food processing and increasing international trade, highly thermoresistant spore-forming bacteria are an emerging problem in food production. Minimally processed foods and products with extended shelf life, such as milk products, are at special risk for contamination and subsequent product damages, but information about origin and food quality related properties of highly heat-resistant spore-formers is still limited. Therefore, the aim of this study was to determine the biodiversity, heat resistance, and food quality and safety affecting characteristics of aerobic spore-formers in the dairy sector. Thus, a comprehensive panel of strains (n=467), which originated from dairy processing environments, raw materials and processed foods, was compiled. The set included isolates associated with recent food spoilage cases and product damages as well as isolates not linked to product spoilage. Identification of the isolates by means of Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy and molecular methods revealed a large biodiversity of spore-formers, especially among the spoilage associated isolates. These could be assigned to 43 species, representing 11 genera, with Bacillus cereus s.l. and Bacillus licheniformis being predominant. A screening for isolates forming thermoresistant spores (TRS, surviving 100°C, 20 min) showed that about one third of the tested spore-formers was heat-resistant, with Bacillus subtilis and Geobacillus stearothermophilus being the prevalent species. Strains producing highly thermoresistant spores (HTRS, surviving 125°C, 30 min) were found among mesophilic as well as among thermophilic species. B. subtilis and Bacillus amyloliquefaciens were dominating the group of mesophilic HTRS, while Bacillus smithii and Geobacillus pallidus were dominating the group of thermophilic HTRS. Analysis of spoilage-related enzymes of the TRS isolates showed that mesophilic strains, belonging to the B. subtilis and B. cereus

  14. Association of Fidaxomicin with C. difficile Spores: Effects of Persistence on Subsequent Spore Recovery, Outgrowth and Toxin Production

    PubMed Central

    Crowther, Grace S.; Ashwin, Helen; Longshaw, Chris M.; Wilcox, Mark H.

    2016-01-01

    Background We have previously shown that fidaxomicin instillation prevents spore recovery in an in-vitro gut model, whereas vancomycin does not. The reasons for this are unclear. Here, we have investigated persistence of fidaxomicin and vancomycin on C. difficile spores, and examined post-antibiotic exposure spore recovery, outgrowth and toxin production. Methods Prevalent UK C. difficile ribotypes (n = 10) were incubated with 200mg/L fidaxomicin, vancomycin or a non-antimicrobial containing control for 1 h in faecal filtrate or Phosphate Buffered Saline. Spores were washed three times with faecal filtrate or phosphate buffered saline, and residual spore-associated antimicrobial activity was determined by bioassay. For three ribotypes (027, 078, 015), antimicrobial-exposed, faecal filtrate-washed spores and controls were inoculated into broth. Viable vegetative and spore counts were enumerated on CCEYL agar. Percentage phase bright spores, phase dark spores and vegetative cells were enumerated by phase contrast microscopy at 0, 3, 6, 24 and 48 h post-inoculation. Toxin levels (24 and 48h) were determined by cell cytotoxicity assay. Results Fidaxomicin, but not vancomycin persisted on spores of all ribotypes following washing in saline (mean = 10.1mg/L; range = 4.0-14mg/L) and faecal filtrate (mean = 17.4mg/L; 8.4–22.1mg/L). Outgrowth and proliferation rates of vancomycin-exposed spores were similar to controls, whereas fidaxomicin-exposed spores showed no vegetative cell growth after 24 and 48 h. At 48h, toxin levels averaged 3.7 and 3.3 relative units (RU) in control and vancomycin-exposed samples, respectively, but were undetectable in fidaxomicin-exposed samples. Conclusion Fidaxomicin persists on C. difficile spores, whereas vancomycin does not. This persistence prevents subsequent growth and toxin production in vitro. This may have implications on spore viability, thereby impacting CDI recurrence and transmission rates. PMID:27556739

  15. Changes in Atmospheric CO2 Influence the Allergenicity of Aspergillus fumigatus fungal spore

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lang-Yona, N.; Levin, Y.; Dannemoller, K. C.; Yarden, O.; Peccia, J.; Rudich, Y.

    2013-12-01

    Increased allergic susceptibility has been documented without a comprehensive understanding for its causes. Therefore understanding trends and mechanisms of allergy inducing agents is essential. In this study we investigated whether elevated atmospheric CO2 levels can affect the allergenicity of Aspergillus fumigatus, a common allergenic fungal species. Both direct exposure to changing CO2 levels during fungal growth, and indirect exposure through changes in the C:N ratios in the growth media were inspected. We determined the allergenicity of the spores through two types of immunoassays, accompanied with genes expression analysis, and proteins relative quantification. We show that fungi grown under present day CO2 levels (392 ppm) exhibit 8.5 and 3.5 fold higher allergenicity compared to fungi grown at preindustrial (280 ppm) and double (560 ppm) CO2 levels, respectively. A corresponding trend is observed in the expression of genes encoding for known allergenic proteins and in the major allergen Asp f1 concentrations, possibly due to physiological changes such as respiration rates and the nitrogen content of the fungus, influenced by the CO2 concentrations. Increased carbon and nitrogen levels in the growth medium also lead to a significant increase in the allergenicity, for which we propose two different biological mechanisms. We suggest that climatic changes such as increasing atmospheric CO2 levels and changes in the fungal growth medium may impact the ability of allergenic fungi such as Aspergillus fumigatus to induce allergies. The effect of changing CO2 concentrations on the total allergenicity per 10^7 spores of A. fumigatus (A), the major allergen Asp f1 concentration in ng per 10^7 spores (B), and the gene expression by RT-PCR (C). The error bars represent the standard error of the mean.

  16. Intra and Inter-Spore Variability in Rhizophagus irregularis AOX Gene

    PubMed Central

    Nogales, Amaia; Svensson, Jan; Lopez-Ráez, Juan Antonio; Pozo, María José; Nobre, Tânia; Schneider, Carolin; Arnholdt-Schmitt, Birgit

    2015-01-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) are root-inhabiting fungi that form mutualistic symbioses with their host plants. AMF symbiosis improves nutrient uptake and buffers the plant against a diversity of stresses. Rhizophagus irregularis is one of the most widespread AMF species in the world, and its application in agricultural systems for yield improvement has increased over the last years. Still, from the inoculum production perspective, a lack of consistency of inoculum quality is referred to, which partially may be due to a high genetic variability of the fungus. The alternative oxidase (AOX) is an enzyme of the alternative respiratory chain already described in different taxa, including various fungi, which decreases the damage caused by oxidative stress. Nevertheless, virtually nothing is known on the involvement of AMF AOX on symbiosis establishment, as well on the existence of AOX variability that could affect AMF effectiveness and consequently plant performance. Here, we report the isolation and characterisation of the AOX gene of R. irregularis (RiAOX), and show that it is highly expressed during early phases of the symbiosis with plant roots. Phylogenetic analysis clustered RiAOX sequence with ancient fungi, and multiple sequence alignment revealed the lack of several regulatory motifs which are present in plant AOX. The analysis of RiAOX polymorphisms in single spores of three different isolates showed a reduced variability in one spore relatively to a group of spores. A high number of polymorphisms occurred in introns; nevertheless, some putative amino acid changes resulting from non-synonymous variants were found, offering a basis for selective pressure to occur within the populations. Given the AOX relatedness with stress responses, differences in gene variants amongst R. irregularis isolates are likely to be related with its origin and environmental constraints and might have a potential impact on inoculum production. PMID:26540237

  17. Pan-European Distribution of White-Nose Syndrome Fungus (Geomyces destructans) Not Associated with Mass Mortality

    PubMed Central

    Korn, Vanessa; Fuller, Hubert; Forget, Frédéric; Mühldorfer, Kristin; Kurth, Andreas; Bogdanowicz, Wieslaw; Borel, Christophe; Bosch, Thijs; Cherezy, Thomas; Drebet, Mikhail; Görföl, Tamás; Haarsma, Anne-Jifke; Herhaus, Frank; Hallart, Guénael; Hammer, Matthias; Jungmann, Christian; Le Bris, Yann; Lutsar, Lauri; Masing, Matti; Mulkens, Bart; Passior, Karsten; Starrach, Martin; Wojtaszewski, Andrzej; Zöphel, Ulrich; Teeling, Emma C.

    2011-01-01

    Background The dramatic mass mortalities amongst hibernating bats in Northeastern America caused by “white nose-syndrome” (WNS) continue to threaten populations of different bat species. The cold-loving fungus, Geomyces destructans, is the most likely causative agent leading to extensive destruction of the skin, particularly the wing membranes. Recent investigations in Europe confirmed the presence of the fungus G. destructans without associated mass mortality in hibernating bats in six countries but its distribution remains poorly known. Methodology/Principal Findings We collected data on the presence of bats with white fungal growth in 12 countries in Europe between 2003 and 2010 and conducted morphological and genetic analysis to confirm the identity of the fungus as Geomyces destructans. Our results demonstrate the presence of the fungus in eight countries spanning over 2000 km from West to East and provide compelling photographic evidence for its presence in another four countries including Romania, and Turkey. Furthermore, matching prevalence data of a hibernaculum monitored over two consecutive years with data from across Europe show that the temporal occurrence of the fungus, which first becomes visible around February, peaks in March but can still be seen in some torpid bats in May or June, is strikingly similar throughout Europe. Finally, we isolated and cultured G. destructans from a cave wall adjacent to a bat with fungal growth. Conclusions/Significance G. destructans is widely found over large areas of the European continent without associated mass mortalities in bats, suggesting that the fungus is native to Europe. The characterisation of the temporal variation in G. destructans growth on bats provides reference data for studying the spatio-temporal dynamic of the fungus. Finally, the presence of G. destructans spores on cave walls suggests that hibernacula could act as passive vectors and/or reservoirs for G. destructans and therefore, might

  18. Thirty-four identifiable airborne fungal spores in Havana, Cuba.

    PubMed

    Almaguer, Michel; Aira, María-Jesús; Rodríguez-Rajo, F Javier; Fernandez-Gonzalez, Maria; Rojas-Flores, Teresa I

    2015-01-01

    The airborne fungal spore content in Havana, Cuba, collected by means a non-viable volumetric methodology, was studied from November 2010 - October 2011. The study, from a qualitative point of view, allowed the characterization of 29 genera and 5 fungal types, described following the Saccardo´s morphotypes, as well as their morphobiometrical characteristics. In the amerospores morphotype, the conidia of 7 genera (with ascospores, basidiospores and uredospores) and 5 fungal types were included. Among phragmospores morphotype, the ascospores and conidia of 12 different genera were identified. The dictyospores morphotype only included conidial forms from 6 genera. Finally, the less frequent morphotypes were staurospores, didymospores and distosepted spores. In general, the main worldwide spread mitosporic fungi also predominated in the Havana atmosphere, accompanied by some ascospores and basidiospores. Cladosporium cladosporioides type was the most abundant with a total of 148,717 spores, followed by Leptosphaeria, Coprinus and the Aspergillus-Penicillium type spores, all of them with total values ranging from 20,591 - 16,392 spores. The higher monthly concentrations were registered in January (31,663 spores) and the lowest in December (7,314 spores). Generally, the average quantity of spores recorded during the months of the dry season (20,599 spores) was higher compared with that observed during the rainy season (17,460 spores). PMID:26094511

  19. Investigating the biology of plant infection by the rice blast fungus Magnaporthe oryzae.

    PubMed

    Martin-Urdiroz, Magdalena; Oses-Ruiz, Miriam; Ryder, Lauren S; Talbot, Nicholas J

    2016-05-01

    The rice blast fungus, Magnaporthe oryzae, is responsible for the most serious disease of rice and is a continuing threat to ensuring global food security. The fungus has also, however, emerged as a model experimental organism for understanding plant infection processes by pathogenic fungi. This is largely due to its amenability to both classical and molecular genetics, coupled with the efforts of a very large international research community. This review, which is based on a plenary presentation at the 28th Fungal Genetics Conference in Asilomar, California in March 2015, describes recent progress in understanding how M. oryzae uses specialised cell called appressoria to bring about plant infection and the underlying biology of this developmental process. We also review how the fungus is then able to proliferate within rice tissue, deploying effector proteins to facilitate its spread by suppressing plant immunity and promoting growth and development of the fungus. PMID:26703899

  20. High diversity and widespread occurrence of mitotic spore mats in ectomycorrhizal Pezizales.

    PubMed

    Healy, R A; Smith, M E; Bonito, G M; Pfister, D H; Ge, Z-W; Guevara, G G; Williams, G; Stafford, K; Kumar, L; Lee, T; Hobart, C; Trappe, J; Vilgalys, R; McLaughlin, D J

    2013-03-01

    Fungal mitospores may function as dispersal units and/ or spermatia and thus play a role in distribution and/or mating of species that produce them. Mitospore production in ectomycorrhizal (EcM) Pezizales is rarely reported, but here we document mitospore production by a high diversity of EcM Pezizales on three continents, in both hemispheres. We sequenced the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) and partial large subunit (LSU) nuclear rDNA from 292 spore mats (visible mitospore clumps) collected in Argentina, Chile, China, Mexico and the USA between 2009 and 2012. We collated spore mat ITS sequences with 105 fruit body and 47 EcM root sequences to generate operational taxonomic units (OTUs). Phylogenetic inferences were made through analyses of both molecular data sets. A total of 48 OTUs from spore mats represented six independent EcM Pezizales lineages and included truffles and cup fungi. Three clades of seven OTUs have no known meiospore stage. Mitospores failed to germinate on sterile media, or form ectomycorrhizas on Quercus, Pinus and Populus seedlings, consistent with a hypothesized role of spermatia. The broad geographic range, high frequency and phylogenetic diversity of spore mats produced by EcM Pezizales suggests that a mitospore stage is important for many species in this group in terms of mating, reproduction and/or dispersal. PMID:23205556

  1. Compatibility of the entomopathogenic fungus Lecanicillium muscarium and insecticides for eradication of sweetpotato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci.

    PubMed

    Cuthbertson, Andrew G S; Walters, Keith F A; Deppe, Carola

    2005-08-01

    The compatibility of the entomopathogenic fungus Lecanicillium muscarium and chemical insecticides used to control the second instar stages of the sweetpotato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci, was investigated. The effect on spore germination of direct exposure for 24 h to the insecticides imidacloprid, buprofezin, teflubenzuron and nicotine was determined. Only exposure to buprofezin was followed by acceptable spore germination. However, all chemicals significantly reduced spore germination when compared to a water control. Infectivity of L. muscarium in the presence of dry residues of buprofezin, teflubenzuron and nicotine (imidacloprid is a systemic pesticide) on foliage were also investigated. No significant detrimental effects on the level of control of B. tabaci was recorded when compared with fungi applied to residue free foliage on either tomato or verbena plants. Fungi in combination with imidacloprid gave higher B. tabaci mortality on verbena foliage compared to either teflubenzuron or nicotine and fungi combinations. Use of these chemical insecticides with L. muscarium in integrated control programmes for B. tabaci is discussed. PMID:16160767

  2. Microbiological efficacy of superheated steam. I. Communication: results with spores of Bacillus subtilis and Bacillus stearothermophilus and with spore earth.

    PubMed

    Spicher, G; Peters, J; Borchers, U

    1999-02-01

    For the spores of Bacillus subtilis and Bacillus stearothermophilus as well as for spore earth (acc. DIN 58,946 Part 4 of August 1982), the dependence of resistance on the superheating of the steam used to kill germs was determined. A material (glass fibre fleece) was used as the germ carrier which does not superheat on contact with steam. The temperature of the saturated steam was 100 degrees C (B. subtilis) and 120 degrees C (B. stearothermophilus and spore earth). The yardstick for the resistance of the spores or bioindicators was the exposure period of the saturated or superheated steam at which 50% of the treated test objects no longer showed any viable test germs. The spores of Bacillus subtilis were far more sensitive to superheating of steam and reacted far more than the spores of Bacillus stearothermophilus and the germs in the spore earth. When superheating by 4 Kelvin the spores of Bacillus subtilis were approximately 2.5 times more resistant than they were to saturated steam. The resistance of Bacillus stearothermophilus and spore earth was only slightly higher up to superheating by 10 Kelvin. The spores of Bacillus subtilis had the highest resistance during superheating by 29 Kelvin; they were 119 times more resistant than they were to saturated steam. The resistance maximum of the spores of Bacillus stearothermophilus was at an superheating by around 22 Kelvin. However, the spores were only 4.1 times more resistant than they were to saturated steam. When using steam to kill germs, we must expect superheated steam. This raises the question whether the spores of Bacillus stearothermophilus, with their weaker reaction to the superheating of steam, are suitable as test germs for sterilisation with steam in all cases. PMID:10084207

  3. A study of Ganoderma lucidum spores by FTIR microspectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xin; Chen, Xianliang; Qi, Zeming; Liu, Xingcun; Li, Weizu; Wang, Shengyi

    2012-06-01

    In order to obtain unique information of Ganoderma lucidum spores, FTIR microspectroscopy was used to study G. lucidum spores from Anhui Province (A), Liaoning Province (B) and Shangdong Province (C) of China. IR micro-spectra were acquired with high-resolution and well-reproducibility. The IR spectra of G. lucidum spores from different areas were similar and mainly made up of the absorption bands of polysaccharide, sterols, proteins, fatty acids, etc. The results of curve fitting indicated the protein secondary structures were dissimilar among the above G. lucidum spores. To identify G. lucidum spores from different areas, the H1078/H1640 value might be a potentially useful factor, furthermore FTIR microspectroscopy could realize this identification efficiently with the help of hierarchical cluster analysis. The result indicates FTIR microspectroscopy is an efficient tool for identification of G. lucidum spores from different areas. The result also suggests FTIR microspectroscopy is a potentially useful tool for the study of TCM.

  4. Assay for Spore Wall Integrity Using a Yeast Predator.

    PubMed

    Okada, Hiroki; Neiman, Aaron M; Ohya, Yoshikazu

    2016-01-01

    During the budding yeast life cycle, a starved diploid cell undergoes meiosis followed by production of four haploid spores, each surrounded by a spore wall. The wall allows the spores to survive in harsh environments until conditions improve. Spores are also more resistant than vegetative cells to treatments such as ether vapor, glucanases, heat shock, high salt concentrations, and exposure to high or low pH, but the relevance of these treatments to natural environmental stresses remains unclear. This protocol describes a method for assaying the yeast spore wall under natural environmental conditions by quantifying the survival of yeast spores that have passed through the digestive system of a yeast predator, the fruit fly. PMID:27480715

  5. Do fungicides used to control Rhizoctonia solani impact the non-target arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus Rhizophagus irregularis?

    PubMed

    Buysens, Catherine; Dupré de Boulois, Hervé; Declerck, Stéphane

    2015-05-01

    There is growing evidence that the application of biocontrol organisms (e.g., Pseudomonas and Bacillus spp., arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi-AMF) is a feasible option to reduce incidence of plant pathogens in an integrated control strategy. However, the utilization of these microorganisms, in particular AMF, may be threatened by the application of fungicides, a widely-used measure to control Rhizoctonia solani in various crops among which potato. Prior to their application, it is thus important to determine the impact of fungicides on AMF. The present study investigated, under in vitro controlled conditions, the impact of azoxystrobin (a systemic broad-spectrum fungicide), flutolanil (a systemic Basidiomycota-specific fungicide), and pencycuron (a contact Rhizoctonia-specific fungicide) and their respective formulations (Amistar, Monarch, and Monceren) on the growth and development of the AMF Rhizophagus irregularis MUCL 41833 (spore germination, root colonization, extraradical mycelium development, and spore production) at doses used to control R. solani. Results demonstrated that azoxystrobin and its formulation Amistar, at threshold values for R. solani control (estimated by the half maximal inhibitory concentration, IC50, on a dry weight basis), did not affect spore germination and potato root colonization by R. irregularis, while the development of extra-radical mycelium and spore production was reduced at 10 times the threshold value. Flutolanil and its formulation Monarch at threshold value did not affect spore germination or extra-radical development but decreased root colonization and arbuscule formation. At threshold value, pencycuron and its formulation Monceren, did not affect spore germination and intra- or extraradical development of R. irregularis. These results suggest that azoxystrobin and pencycuron do not affect the AMF at threshold concentrations to control R. solani in vitro, while flutolanil (as formulation) impacts the intraradical phase of the

  6. Application of gaseous ozone for inactivation of Bacillus subtilis spores.

    PubMed

    Aydogan, Ahmet; Gurol, Mirat D

    2006-02-01

    The effectiveness of gaseous ozone (O3) as a disinfectant was tested on Bacillus subtilis spores, which share the same physiological characteristics as Bacillus anthracis spores that cause the anthrax disease. Spores dried on surfaces of different carrier material were exposed to O3 gas in the range of 500-5000 ppm and at relative humidity (RH) of 70-95%. Gaseous O3 was found to be very effective against the B. subtilis spores, and at O3 concentrations as low as 3 mg/L (1500 ppm), approximately 3-log inactivation was obtained within 4 hr of exposure. The inactivation curves consisted of a short lag phase followed by an exponential decrease in the number of surviving spores. Prehydration of the bacterial spores has eliminated the initial lag phase. The inactivation rate increased with increasing O3 concentration but not >3 mg/L. The inactivation rate also increased with increase in RH. Different survival curves were obtained for various surfaces used to carry spores. Inactivation rates of spores on glass, a vinyl floor tile, and office paper were nearly the same. Whereas cut pile carpet and hardwood flooring surfaces resulted in much lower inactivation rates, another type of carpet (loop pile) showed significant enhancement in the inactivation of the spores. PMID:16568801

  7. Quantitative and sensitive RNA based detection of Bacillus spores

    PubMed Central

    Osmekhina, Ekaterina; Shvetsova, Antonina; Ruottinen, Maria; Neubauer, Peter

    2014-01-01

    The fast and reliable detection of bacterial spores is of great importance and still remains a challenge. Here we describe a direct RNA-based diagnostic method for the specific detection of viable bacterial spores which does not depends on an enzymatic amplification step and therefore is directly appropriate for quantification. The procedure includes the following steps: (i) heat activation of spores, (ii) germination and enrichment cultivation, (iii) cell lysis, and (iv) analysis of 16S rRNA in crude cell lysates using a sandwich hybridization assay. The sensitivity of the method is dependent on the cultivation time and the detection limit; it is possible to detect 10 spores per ml when the RNA analysis is performed after 6 h of enrichment cultivation. At spore concentrations above 106 spores per ml the cultivation time can be shortened to 30 min. Total analysis times are in the range of 2–8 h depending on the spore concentration in samples. The developed procedure is optimized at the example of Bacillus subtilis spores but should be applicable to other organisms. The new method can easily be modified for other target RNAs and is suitable for specific detection of spores from known groups of organisms. PMID:24653718

  8. Characterization of Five Novel Mitoviruses in the White Pine Blister Rust Fungus Cronartium ribicola.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jun-Jun; Chan, Danelle; Xiang, Yu; Williams, Holly; Li, Xiao-Rui; Sniezko, Richard A; Sturrock, Rona N

    2016-01-01

    The white pine blister rust (WPBR) fungus Cronartium ribicola (J.C. Fisch.) is an exotic invasive forest pathogen causing severe stem canker disease of native white pine trees (subgenus Strobus) in North America. The present study reports discovery of five novel mitoviruses in C. ribicola by deep RNA sequencing. The complete genome of each mitovirus was determined by rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) and reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). A single open reading frame (ORF) encoding a putative RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) was detected in each of the viral genomes using mitochondrial genetic codes. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that the C. ribicola mitoviruses (CrMV1 to CrMV5) are new putative species of the genus Mitovirus. qRT-PCR and RNA-Seq analyses revealed that viral RNAs were significantly increased in fungal mycelia in cankered pine stems compared to expression during two different stages of spore development, suggesting that viral genome replication and transcription benefit from active growth of the host fungus. CrMVs were widespread with relatively high levels of minor allele frequency (MAF) in western North America. As the first report of mitoviruses in the Class Pucciniomycetes, this work allows further investigation of the dynamics of a viral community in the WPBR pathosystem, including potential impacts that may affect pathogenicity and virulence of the host fungus. PMID:27196406

  9. Characterization of Five Novel Mitoviruses in the White Pine Blister Rust Fungus Cronartium ribicola

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Jun-Jun; Chan, Danelle; Xiang, Yu; Williams, Holly; Li, Xiao-Rui; Sniezko, Richard A.; Sturrock, Rona N.

    2016-01-01

    The white pine blister rust (WPBR) fungus Cronartium ribicola (J.C. Fisch.) is an exotic invasive forest pathogen causing severe stem canker disease of native white pine trees (subgenus Strobus) in North America. The present study reports discovery of five novel mitoviruses in C. ribicola by deep RNA sequencing. The complete genome of each mitovirus was determined by rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) and reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). A single open reading frame (ORF) encoding a putative RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) was detected in each of the viral genomes using mitochondrial genetic codes. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that the C. ribicola mitoviruses (CrMV1 to CrMV5) are new putative species of the genus Mitovirus. qRT-PCR and RNA-Seq analyses revealed that viral RNAs were significantly increased in fungal mycelia in cankered pine stems compared to expression during two different stages of spore development, suggesting that viral genome replication and transcription benefit from active growth of the host fungus. CrMVs were widespread with relatively high levels of minor allele frequency (MAF) in western North America. As the first report of mitoviruses in the Class Pucciniomycetes, this work allows further investigation of the dynamics of a viral community in the WPBR pathosystem, including potential impacts that may affect pathogenicity and virulence of the host fungus. PMID:27196406

  10. Inbreeding depression in urban environments of the bird's nest fungus Cyathus stercoreus (Nidulariaceae: Basidiomycota).

    PubMed

    Malloure, B D; James, T Y

    2013-04-01

    Many organisms display codispersal of offspring, but fewer display codispersal of compatible gametes. This mechanism enhances the ability of a species to colonize after long distance dispersal as a mechanism of reproductive assurance, but it also fosters inbreeding and potential reduction in fitness. Here we investigated both long distance dispersal and inbreeding in the bird's nest fungus Cyathus stercoreus, a dung and mulch-associated fungus with a splash cup fruiting body appearing like a miniature bird's nest of 'eggs' or peridioles that contain thousands of mating compatible meiotic spores. To investigate the genetic structure in the species, six North American urban populations were hierarchically sampled and genotyped using 10 microsatellite markers. We detected significant levels of inbreeding through heterozygote deficiencies at four loci, with global FIS=0.061. Dispersal limitation was suggested by both spatial autocorrelation and the detection of population structure between Louisiana and Michigan using clustering and F-statistics. Although inbreeding may facilitate colonization by the fungus, it has a negative effect on the fitness of populations as estimated from a 15% reduction in growth rates of inbred strains relative to outcrossed. Mating tests revealed that C. stercoreus has a higher estimated number of mating-type alleles (MAT-A= 39, MAT-B= 24) than other species of bird's nest fungi, which would increase its outcrossing efficiency. We speculate that the increased number of mating-type alleles is the result of a recent range and population size expansion into urban environments. PMID:23169564

  11. Spore-Forming Bacteria that Resist Sterilization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    LaDuc, Myron; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri

    2003-01-01

    A report presents a phenotypic and genotypic characterization of a bacterial species that has been found to be of the genus Bacillus and has been tentatively named B. odysseensis because it was isolated from surfaces of the Mars Odyssey spacecraft as part of continuing research on techniques for sterilizing spacecraft to prevent contamination of remote planets by terrestrial species. B. odysseensis is a Gram-positive, facultatively anaerobic, rod-shaped bacterium that forms round spores. The exosporium has been conjectured to play a role in the elevated resistance to sterilization. Research on the exosporium is proposed as a path toward improved means of sterilization, medical treatment, and prevention of biofouling.

  12. [Cutaneous mold fungus granuloma from Ulocladium chartarum].

    PubMed

    Altmeyer, P; Schon, K

    1981-01-01

    Cutaneous granulomas due to the mold fungus Ulocladium chartarum (Preuss) are described in a 58 year old woman. This fungus is usually harmless for mammalian. It is thought that a consisting immunosuppression (Brill-Symmer's disease, therapy with corticosteroids) was a priming condition for the infection. The route of infection in this patient described is unknown. PMID:7194869

  13. Morphological and Molecular Analysis Identifies the Associated Fungus ("Xianghui") of the Medicinal White Jelly Mushroom, Tremella fuciformis, as Annulohypoxylon stygium.

    PubMed

    Deng, Youjin; van Peer, Arend Frans; Lan, Fu-Sheng; Wang, Qing-Fu; Jiang, Yuji; Lian, Ling-Dan; Lu, Dong-Min; Xie, Baogui

    2016-01-01

    White jelly mushroom, Tremella fuciformis, is a popular edible mushroom with interesting medicinal properties (e.g., immunostimulating, antidiabetic). The formation of T. fuciformis basidiomes is highly dependent on the presence of a specific host fungus, both in nature and for industrial production. This host has traditionally been indicated as "Xianghui" in China, yet which or how many fungal species Xianghui comprises is unclear, with various authorities claiming different species. At present, Annulohypoxilon archeri is generally assumed to be the main Xianghui species, but this has not yet been confirmed experimentally. The implementation of older, premolecular-based research data (i.e., morphological) with present, sequence-based data to solve the identity remains confusing and studies addressing both identification methods in combination are lacking. The unclear identity of Xianghui is a major obstacle for further understanding of the important relationship between the host(s) and T. fuciformis. In this study, we collected a wild specimen of T. fuciformis together with several nearby stroma of Xianghui, cocultivated T. fuciformis with the Xianghui isolates, and observed basidiome formation. Internal transcribed spacer (ITS) sequence analysis showed that all Xianghui spore isolates belonged to the same species and both morphological analysis of sexual stages and ITS β-tubulin and actin gene sequences of the Xianghui specified it as Annulohypoxylon stygium. The ITS sequences of the newly identified Xianghui further closely matched those of the Xianghui strains used in the mushroom industry, showing that wild and culture spawn Xianghui in China consist of A. stygium. In contrast with previous conclusions, A. stygium, and not A. archeris, seems to be the preferred host of T. fuciformis. PMID:27481159

  14. The Human Microsporidian Encephalitozoon hellem Synthesizes Two Spore Wall Polymorphic Proteins Useful for Epidemiological Studies ▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Polonais, Valérie; Mazet, Muriel; Wawrzyniak, Ivan; Texier, Catherine; Blot, Nicolas; El Alaoui, Hicham; Delbac, Frédéric

    2010-01-01

    Microsporidia are obligate intracellular fungus-related parasites considered as emerging opportunistic human pathogens. Their extracellular infective and resistance stage is a spore surrounded by a unique plasma membrane protected by a thick cell wall consisting of two layers: the electron-lucent inner endospore which contains chitin and protein components and the outer-electron-dense and mainly proteinaceous exospore. We identified the whole sequences of two spore wall proteins in the microsporidian species Encephalitozoon hellem, designated EhSWP1a and EhSWP1b. Isolation of the genes encoding these SWP1-like proteins was performed using degenerate oligonucleotides based on the amino acid sequence alignment of the previously reported Encephalitozoon cuniculi and Encephalitozoon intestinalis SWP1s. Sequences lacking the 5′ and 3′ ends were then identified by PCR and reverse transcription (RT)-PCR amplifications. The swp1a and swp1b genes encode proteins of 509 and 533 amino acids, respectively, which present an identical N-terminal domain of 382 residues and a variable C-terminal extension mainly characterized by a 26-amino-acid (aa) deletion/insertion containing glutamate- and lysine-rich repeats. Using polyclonal antibodies raised against recombinant polypeptides, we showed that EhSWP1a and EhSWP1b appear as dithiothreitol (DTT)-soluble bands of 55 and 60 kDa in size, respectively. Immunolocalization experiments by IFA and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) indicated that both proteins are present at the onset of sporogony and are specifically located to the spore wall exospore in mature spores. Analysis of four E. hellem human isolates revealed that the C-terminal regions of both EhSWP1a and EhSWP1b are polymorphic, which is of interest for epidemiological studies. PMID:20231418

  15. Effect of volatiles versus exudates released by germinating spores of Gigaspora margarita on lateral root formation.

    PubMed

    Sun, Xue-Guang; Bonfante, Paola; Tang, Ming

    2015-12-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi influence the root system architecture of their hosts; however, the underlying mechanisms have not been fully elucidated. Ectomycorrhizal fungi influence root architecture via volatiles. To determine whether volatiles also play a role in root system changes in response to AM fungi, spores of the AM fungus Gigaspora margarita were inoculated on the same plate as either wild type (WT) Lotus japonicus, the L. japonicus mutant Ljcastor (which lacks the symbiotic cation channel CASTOR, which is required for inducing nuclear calcium spiking, which is necessary for symbiotic partner recognition), or Arabidopsis thaliana, separated by cellophane membranes (fungal exudates experiment), or on different media but with a shared head space (fungal volatiles experiment). Root development was monitored over time. Both germinating spore exudates (GSEs) and geminated-spore-emitted volatile organic compounds (GVCs) significantly promoted lateral root formation (LRF) in WT L. japonicus. LRF in Ljcastor was significantly enhanced in the presence of GVCs. GVCs stimulated LRF in A. thaliana, whereas GSEs showed an inhibitory effect. The expression profile of the genes involved in mycorrhizal establishment and root development were investigated using quantitative reverse transcription-PCR analysis. Only the expression of the LjCCD7 gene, an important component of the strigolactone synthesis pathway, was differentially expressed following exposure to GVCs. We conclude that volatile organic compounds released by the germinating AM fungal spores may stimulate LRF in a symbiosis signaling pathway (SYM)- and host-independent way, whereas GSEs stimulate LRF in a SYM- and host-dependent way. PMID:26397199

  16. Role of the Alternaria alternata Blue-Light Receptor LreA (White-Collar 1) in Spore Formation and Secondary Metabolism

    PubMed Central

    Pruß, Sonja; Fetzner, Ramona; Seither, Kristin; Herr, Andreas; Pfeiffer, Erika; Metzler, Manfred; Lawrence, Christopher B.

    2014-01-01

    Alternaria alternata is a filamentous fungus that causes considerable loss of crops of economically important feed and food worldwide. It produces more than 60 different secondary metabolites, among which alternariol (AOH) and altertoxin (ATX) are the most important mycotoxins. We found that mycotoxin production and spore formation are regulated by light in opposite ways. Whereas spore formation was largely decreased under light conditions, the production of AOH was stimulated 2- to 3-fold. ATX production was even strictly dependent on light. All light effects observed could be triggered by blue light, whereas red light had only a minor effect. Inhibition of spore formation by light was reversible after 1 day of incubation in the dark. We identified orthologues of genes encoding the Neurospora crassa blue-light-perceiving white-collar proteins, a cryptochrome, a phytochrome, and an opsin-related protein in the genome of A. alternata. Deletion of the white-collar 1 (WC-1) gene (lreA) resulted in derepression of spore formation in dark and in light. ATX formation was strongly induced in the dark in the lreA mutant, suggesting a repressing function of LreA, which appears to be released in the wild type after blue-light exposure. In addition, light induction of AOH formation was partially dependent on LreA, suggesting also an activating function. A. alternata ΔlreA was still able to partially respond to blue light, indicating the action of another blue-light receptor system. PMID:24532063

  17. Fitness-associated sexual reproduction in a filamentous fungus.

    PubMed

    Schoustra, Sijmen; Rundle, Howard D; Dali, Rola; Kassen, Rees

    2010-08-10

    Sex is a long-standing evolutionary enigma. Although the majority of eukaryotes reproduce sexually at least sometimes [1-3], the evolution of sex from an asexual ancestor has been difficult to explain because it requires sexually reproducing lineages to overcome the manifold costs of sex, including the destruction of favorable gene combinations created by selection [4, 5]. Conditions for the evolution of sex are much broader if individuals can reproduce either sexually or asexually (i.e., facultative sex) and allocate disproportionately more resources to sex when their fitness is low (fitness-associated-sex or FAS [6-10]). Although facultatively sexual organisms have been shown to engage in more sex when stressed [11], direct evidence for FAS is lacking. We provide evidence using 53 genotypes of the filamentous fungus Aspergillus nidulans in a reciprocal transplant experiment across three environments. Different genotypes achieved highest fitness in different environments and genotypes invested relatively more in sex in environments in which their fitness was lower, showing that allocation to sexual reproduction is a function of how well-adapted a genotype is to its environment. FAS in A. nidulans is unlikely to have evolved as a strategy to resist or avoid stress because asexual spores are more dispersive and equally resistant [12, 13]. PMID:20598542

  18. Airborne fungal spores of Alternaria, meteorological parameters and predicting variables

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Filali Ben Sidel, Farah; Bouziane, Hassan; del Mar Trigo, Maria; El Haskouri, Fatima; Bardei, Fadoua; Redouane, Abdelbari; Kadiri, Mohamed; Riadi, Hassane; Kazzaz, Mohamed

    2015-03-01

    Alternaria is frequently found as airborne fungal spores and is recognized as an important cause of respiratory allergies. The aerobiological monitoring of fungal spores was performed using a Burkard volumetric spore traps. To establish predicting variables for daily and weakly spore counts, a stepwise multiple regression between spore concentrations and independent variables (meteorological parameters and lagged values from the series of spore concentrations: previous day or week concentration (Alt t - 1) and mean concentration of the same day or week in other years ( C mean)) was made with data obtained during 2009-2011. Alternaria conidia are present throughout the year in the atmosphere of Tetouan, although they show important seasonal fluctuations. The highest levels of Alternaria spores were recorded during the spring and summer or autumn. Alternaria showed maximum daily values in April, May or October depending on year. When the spore variables of Alternaria, namely C mean and Alt t - 1, and meteorological parameters were included in the equation, the resulting R 2 satisfactorily predict future concentrations for 55.5 to 81.6 % during the main spore season and the pre-peak 2. In the predictive model using weekly values, the adjusted R 2 varied from 0.655 to 0.676. The Wilcoxon test was used to compare the results from the expected values and the pre-peak spore data or weekly values for 2012, indicating that there were no significant differences between series compared. This test showed the C mean, Alt t - 1, frequency of the wind third quadrant, maximum wind speed and minimum relative humidity as the most efficient independent variables to forecast the overall trend of this spore in the air.

  19. Contamination of healthcare workers' hands with bacterial spores.

    PubMed

    Sasahara, Teppei; Ae, Ryusuke; Watanabe, Michiyo; Kimura, Yumiko; Yonekawa, Chikara; Hayashi, Shunji; Morisawa, Yuji

    2016-08-01

    Clostridium species and Bacillus spp. are spore-forming bacteria that cause hospital infections. The spores from these bacteria are transmitted from patient to patient via healthcare workers' hands. Although alcohol-based hand rubbing is an important hand hygiene practice, it is ineffective against bacterial spores. Therefore, healthcare workers should wash their hands with soap when they are contaminated with spores. However, the extent of health care worker hand contamination remains unclear. The aim of this study is to determine the level of bacterial spore contamination on healthcare workers' hands. The hands of 71 healthcare workers were evaluated for bacterial spore contamination. Spores attached to subject's hands were quantitatively examined after 9 working hours. The relationship between bacterial spore contamination and hand hygiene behaviors was also analyzed. Bacterial spores were detected on the hands of 54 subjects (76.1%). The mean number of spores detected was 468.3 CFU/hand (maximum: 3300 CFU/hand). Thirty-seven (52.1%) and 36 (50.7%) subjects were contaminated with Bacillus subtilis and Bacillus cereus, respectively. Nineteen subjects (26.8%) were contaminated with both Bacillus species. Clostridium difficile was detected on only one subject's hands. There was a significant negative correlation between the hand contamination level and the frequency of handwashing (r = -0.44, P < 0.01) and a significant positive correlation between the hand contamination level and the elapsed time since last handwashing (r = 0.34, P < 0.01). Healthcare workers' hands may be frequently contaminated with bacterial spores due to insufficient handwashing during daily patient care. PMID:27236515

  20. Model simulations of fungal spore distribution over the Indian region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ansari, Tabish U.; Valsan, Aswathy E.; Ojha, N.; Ravikrishna, R.; Narasimhan, Balaji; Gunthe, Sachin S.

    2015-12-01

    Fungal spores play important role in the health of humans, animals, and plants by constituting a class of the primary biological aerosol particles (PBAPs). Additionally, these could mediate the hydrological cycle by acting as nuclei for ice and cloud formation (IN and CCN respectively). Various processes in the biosphere and the variations in the meteorological conditions control the releasing mechanism of spores through active wet and dry discharge. In the present paper, we simulate the concentration of fungal spores over the Indian region during three distinct meteorological seasons by combining a numerical model (WRF-Chem) with the fungal spore emissions based on land-use type. Maiden high-resolution regional simulations revealed large spatial gradient and strong seasonal dependence in the concentration of fungal spores over the Indian region. The fungal spore concentrations are found to be the highest during winter (0-70 μg m-3 in December), moderately higher during summer (0-35 μg m-3 in May) and lowest during the monsoon (0-25 μg m-3 in July). The elevated concentrations during winter are attributed to the shallower boundary layer trapping the emitted fungal spores in smaller volume. In contrast, the deeper boundary layer mixing in May and stronger monsoonal-convection in July distribute the fungal spores throughout the lower troposphere (∼5 km). We suggest that the higher fungal spore concentrations during winter could have potential health impacts. While, stronger vertical mixing could enable fungal spores to influence the cloud formation during summer and monsoon. Our study provides the first information about the distribution and seasonal variation of fungal spores over the densely populated and observationally sparse Indian region.

  1. Effect of Lysozyme on Ionic Forms of Spores of Clostridium perfringens Type A

    PubMed Central

    Ando, Yoshiaki

    1975-01-01

    H spores of Clostridium perfringens type A (two strains) were more sensitive to germination by lysozyme than native spores. Resistance to lysozyme of H spores was restored by calcium loading. PMID:236284

  2. Binding Affinity of Glycoconjugates to BACILLUS Spores and Toxins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rasol, Aveen; Eassa, Souzan; Tarasenko, Olga

    2010-04-01

    Early recognition of Bacillus cereus group species is important since they can cause food-borne illnesses and deadly diseases in humans. Glycoconjugates (GCs) are carbohydrates covalently linked to non-sugar moieties including lipids, proteins or other entities. GCs are involved in recognition and signaling processes intrinsic to biochemical functions in cells. They also stimulate cell-cell adhesion and subsequent recognition and activation of receptors. We have demonstrated that GCs are involved in Bacillus cereus spore recognition. In the present study, we have investigated whether GCs possess the ability to bind and recognize B. cereus spores and Bacillus anthracis recombinant single toxins (sTX) and complex toxins (cTX). The affinity of GCs to spores + sTX and spores + cTX toxins was studied in the binding essay. Our results demonstrated that GC9 and GC10 were able to selectively bind to B. cereus spores and B. anthracis toxins. Different binding affinities for GCs were found toward Bacillus cereus spores + sTX and spores + cTX. Dilution of GCs does not impede the recognition and binding. Developed method provides a tool for simultaneous recognition and targeting of spores, bacteria toxins, and/or other entities.

  3. Comparison of hand hygiene procedures for removing Bacillus cereus spores.

    PubMed

    Sasahara, Teppei; Hayashi, Shunji; Hosoda, Kouichi; Morisawa, Yuji; Hirai, Yoshikazu

    2014-01-01

    Bacillus cereus is a spore-forming bacterium. B. cereus occasionally causes nosocomial infections, in which hand contamination with the spores plays an important role. Therefore, hand hygiene is the most important practice for controlling nosocomial B. cereus infections. This study aimed to determine the appropriate hand hygiene procedure for removing B. cereus spores. Thirty volunteers' hands were experimentally contaminated with B. cereus spores, after which they performed 6 different hand hygiene procedures. We compared the efficacy of the procedures in removing the spores from hands. The alcohol-based hand-rubbing procedures scarcely removed them. The soap washing procedures reduced the number of spores by more than 2 log10. Extending the washing time increased the spore-removing efficacy of the washing procedures. There was no significant difference in efficacy between the use of plain soap and antiseptic soap. Handwashing with soap is appropriate for removing B. cereus spores from hands. Alcohol-based hand-rubbing is not effective. PMID:25252644

  4. Mushrooms as Rainmakers: How Spores Act as Nuclei for Raindrops

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Millions of tons of fungal spores are dispersed in the atmosphere every year. These living cells, along with plant spores and pollen grains, may act as nuclei for condensation of water in clouds. Basidiospores released by mushrooms form a significant proportion of these aerosols, particularly above tropical forests. Mushroom spores are discharged from gills by the rapid displacement of a droplet of fluid on the cell surface. This droplet is formed by the condensation of water on the spore surface stimulated by the secretion of mannitol and other hygroscopic sugars. This fluid is carried with the spore during discharge, but evaporates once the spore is airborne. Using environmental electron microscopy, we have demonstrated that droplets reform on spores in humid air. The kinetics of this process suggest that basidiospores are especially effective as nuclei for the formation of large water drops in clouds. Through this mechanism, mushroom spores may promote rainfall in ecosystems that support large populations of ectomycorrhizal and saprotrophic basidiomycetes. Our research heightens interest in the global significance of the fungi and raises additional concerns about the sustainability of forests that depend on heavy precipitation. PMID:26509436

  5. Mushrooms as Rainmakers: How Spores Act as Nuclei for Raindrops.

    PubMed

    Hassett, Maribeth O; Fischer, Mark W F; Money, Nicholas P

    2015-01-01

    Millions of tons of fungal spores are dispersed in the atmosphere every year. These living cells, along with plant spores and pollen grains, may act as nuclei for condensation of water in clouds. Basidiospores released by mushrooms form a significant proportion of these aerosols, particularly above tropical forests. Mushroom spores are discharged from gills by the rapid displacement of a droplet of fluid on the cell surface. This droplet is formed by the condensation of water on the spore surface stimulated by the secretion of mannitol and other hygroscopic sugars. This fluid is carried with the spore during discharge, but evaporates once the spore is airborne. Using environmental electron microscopy, we have demonstrated that droplets reform on spores in humid air. The kinetics of this process suggest that basidiospores are especially effective as nuclei for the formation of large water drops in clouds. Through this mechanism, mushroom spores may promote rainfall in ecosystems that support large populations of ectomycorrhizal and saprotrophic basidiomycetes. Our research heightens interest in the global significance of the fungi and raises additional concerns about the sustainability of forests that depend on heavy precipitation. PMID:26509436

  6. Enumerating Spore-Forming Bacteria Airborne with Particles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lin, Ying; Barengoltz, Jack

    2006-01-01

    A laboratory method has been conceived to enable the enumeration of (1) Cultivable bacteria and bacterial spores that are, variously, airborne by themselves or carried by, parts of, or otherwise associated with, other airborne particles; and (2) Spore-forming bacteria among all of the aforementioned cultivable microbes.

  7. Factors influencing Saprolegnia spp. spore numbers in Norwegian salmon hatcheries.

    PubMed

    Thoen, E; Evensen, Ø; Skaar, I

    2016-06-01

    A quantitative survey of Saprolegnia spp. in the water systems of Norwegian salmon hatcheries was performed. Water samples from 14 salmon hatcheries distributed along the Norwegian coastline were collected during final incubation in the hatcheries. Samples of inlet and effluent water were analyzed to estimate Saprolegnia propagule numbers. Saprolegnia spores were found in all samples at variable abundance. Number of spores retrieved varied from 50 to 3200 L(-1) in inlet water and from 30 to >5000 L(-1) in effluent water. A significant elevation of spore levels in effluent water compared to inlet water was detected. The estimated spore levels were related to recorded managerial and environmental parameters, and the number of spores in inlet water and temperature was the factor having most influence on the spore concentration in the incubation units (effluent water). Further, the relative impact of spore concentration on hatching rates was investigated by correlation analysis. From this was found that even high spore counts did not impact significantly on hatching success. PMID:26123005

  8. The Role of the Electrostatic Force in Spore Adhesion

    SciTech Connect

    Chung, Eunhyea; Yiacoumi, Sotira; Lee, Ida; Tsouris, Costas

    2010-01-01

    Electrostatic force is investigated as one of the components of the adhesion force between Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) spores and planar surfaces. The surface potentials of a Bt spore and a mica surface are experimentally obtained using a combined atomic force microscopy (AFM)-scanning surface potential microscopy technique. On the basis of experimental information, the surface charge density of the spores is estimated at 0.03 {micro}C/cm{sup 2} at 20% relative humidity and decreases with increasing humidity. The Coulombic force is introduced for the spore-mica system (both charged, nonconductive surfaces), and an electrostatic image force is introduced to the spore-gold system because gold is electrically conductive. The Coulombic force for spore-mica is repulsive because the components are similarly charged, while the image force for the spore-gold system is attractive. The magnitude of both forces decreases with increasing humidity. The electrostatic forces are added to other force components, e.g., van der Waals and capillary forces, to obtain the adhesion force for each system. The adhesion forces measured by AFM are compared to the estimated values. It is shown that the electrostatic (Coulombic and image) forces play a significant role in the adhesion force between spores and planar surfaces.

  9. Protoplast dehydration correlated with heat resistance of bacterial spores.

    PubMed Central

    Nakashio, S; Gerhardt, P

    1985-01-01

    Water content of the protoplast in situ within the fully hydrated dormant bacterial spore was quantified by use of a spore in which the complex of coat and outer (pericortex) membrane was genetically defective or chemically removed, as evidenced by susceptibility of the cortex to lysozyme and by permeability of the periprotoplast integument to glucose. Water content was determined by equilibrium permeability measurement with 3H-labeled water (confirmed by gravimetric measurement) for the entire spore, with 14C-labeled glucose for the integument outside the inner (pericytoplasm) membrane, and by the difference for the protoplast. The method was applied to lysozyme-sensitive spores of Bacillus stearothermophilus, B. subtilis, B. cereus, B. thuringiensis, and B. megaterium (four types). Comparable lysozyme-resistant spores, in which the outer membrane functioned as the primary permeability barrier to glucose, were employed as controls. Heat resistances were expressed as D100 values. Protoplast water content of the lysozyme-sensitive spore types correlated with heat resistance exponentially in two distinct clusters, with the four B. megaterium types in one alignment, and with the four other species types in another. Protoplast water contents of the B. megaterium spore types were sufficiently low (26 to 29%, based on wet protoplast weight) to account almost entirely for their lesser heat resistance. Corresponding values of the other species types were similar or higher (30 to 55%), indicating that these spores depended on factors additional to protoplast dehydration for their much greater heat resistance. PMID:3988704

  10. Bacillus atrophaeus Outer Spore Coat Assembly and Ultrastructure

    SciTech Connect

    Plomp, M; Leighton, T J; Wheeler, K E; Pitesky, M E; Malkin, A J

    2005-11-21

    Our previous atomic force microscopy (AFM) studies successfully visualized native Bacillus atrophaeus spore coat ultrastructure and surface morphology. We have shown that the outer spore coat surface is formed by a crystalline array of {approx}11 nm thick rodlets, having a periodicity of {approx}8 nm. We present here further AFM ultrastructural investigations of air-dried and fully hydrated spore surface architecture. In the rodlet layer, planar and point defects, as well as domain boundaries, similar to those described for inorganic and macromolecular crystals, were identified. For several Bacillus species, rodlet structure assembly and architectural variation appear to be a consequence of species-specific nucleation and crystallization mechanisms that regulate the formation of the outer spore coat. We propose a unifying mechanism for nucleation and self-assembly of this crystalline layer on the outer spore coat surface.

  11. Surface sampling methods for Bacillus anthracis spore contamination.

    PubMed

    Sanderson, Wayne T; Hein, Misty J; Taylor, Lauralynn; Curwin, Brian D; Kinnes, Gregory M; Seitz, Teresa A; Popovic, Tanja; Holmes, Harvey T; Kellum, Molly E; McAllister, Sigrid K; Whaley, David N; Tupin, Edward A; Walker, Timothy; Freed, Jennifer A; Small, Dorothy S; Klusaritz, Brian; Bridges, John H

    2002-10-01

    During an investigation conducted December 17-20, 2001, we collected environmental samples from a U.S. postal facility in Washington, D.C., known to be extensively contaminated with Bacillus anthracis spores. Because methods for collecting and analyzing B. anthracis spores have not yet been validated, our objective was to compare the relative effectiveness of sampling methods used for collecting spores from contaminated surfaces. Comparison of wipe, wet and dry swab, and HEPA vacuum sock samples on nonporous surfaces indicated good agreement between results with HEPA vacuum and wipe samples. However, results from HEPA vacuum sock and wipe samples agreed poorly with the swab samples. Dry swabs failed to detect spores >75% of the time when they were detected by wipe and HEPA vacuum samples. Wipe samples collected after HEPA vacuum samples and HEPA vacuum samples collected after wipe samples indicated that neither method completely removed spores from the sampled surfaces. PMID:12396930

  12. Quantification of Spore-forming Bacteria Carried by Dust Particles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lin, Ying; Cholakian, Tanya; Gao, Wenming; Osman, Shariff; Barengoltz, Jack

    2006-01-01

    In order to establish a biological contamination transport model for predicting the cross contamination risk during spacecraft assembly and upon landing on Mars, it is important to understand the relationship between spore-forming bacteria and their carrier particles. We conducted air and surface sampling in indoor, outdoor, and cleanroom environments to determine the ratio of spore forming bacteria to their dust particle carriers of different sizes. The number of spore forming bacteria was determined from various size groups of particles in a given environment. Our data also confirms the existence of multiple spores on a single particle and spore clumps. This study will help in developing a better bio-contamination transport model, which in turn will help in determining forward contamination risks for future missions.

  13. Dual effects of single-walled carbon nanotubes coupled with near-infrared radiation on Bacillus anthracis spores: inactivates spores and stimulates the germination of surviving spores

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Bacillus anthracis is a pathogen that causes life-threatening disease--anthrax. B. anthracis spores are highly resistant to extreme temperatures and harsh chemicals. Inactivation of B. anthracis spores is important to ensure the environmental safety and public health. The 2001 bioterrorism attack involving anthrax spores has brought acute public attention and triggered extensive research on inactivation of B. anthracis spores. Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) as a class of emerging nanomaterial have been reported as a strong antimicrobial agent. In addition, continuous near infrared (NIR) radiation on SWCNTs induces excessive local heating which can enhance SWCNTs’ antimicrobial effect. In this study, we investigated the effects of SWCNTs coupled with NIR treatment on Bacillus anthracis spores. Results and discussion The results showed that the treatment of 10 μg/mL SWCNTs coupled with 20 min NIR significantly improved the antimicrobial effect by doubling the percentage of viable spore number reduction compared with SWCNTs alone treatment (88% vs. 42%). At the same time, SWCNTs-NIR treatment activated the germination of surviving spores and their dipicolinic acid (DPA) release during germination. The results suggested the dual effect of SWCNTs-NIR treatment on B. anthracis spores: enhanced the sporicidal effect and stimulated the germination of surviving spores. Molecular level examination showed that SWCNTs-NIR increased the expression levels (>2-fold) in 3 out of 6 germination related genes tested in this study, which was correlated to the activated germination and DPA release. SWCNTs-NIR treatment either induced or inhibited the expression of 3 regulatory genes detected in this study. When the NIR treatment time was 5 or 25 min, there were 3 out of 7 virulence related genes that showed significant decrease on expression levels (>2 fold decrease). Conclusions The results of this study demonstrated the dual effect of SWCNTs-NIR treatment on

  14. Evolutionary development of the plant and spore wall

    PubMed Central

    Wallace, Simon; Fleming, Andrew; Wellman, Charles H.; Beerling, David J.

    2011-01-01

    Background and aims Many key innovations were required to enable plants to colonize terrestrial habitats successfully. One of these was the acquisition of a durable spore/pollen wall capable of withstanding the harsh desiccating and UV-B-rich environment encountered on land. The spores of ‘lower’ spore-bearing plants and the pollen of ‘higher’ seed plants are homologous. In recent years, researchers have begun to investigate the molecular genetics of pollen wall development in angiosperms (including the model organism Arabidopsis thaliana). However, research into the molecular genetics of spore wall development in more basal plants has thus far been extremely limited. This review summarizes the literature on spore/pollen wall development, including the molecular genetics associated with pollen wall development in angiosperms, in a preliminary attempt to identify possible candidate genes involved in spore wall development in more basal plants. Presence in moss of genes involved in pollen wall development Bioinformatic studies have suggested that genes implicated in pollen wall development in angiosperms are also present in moss and lycopsids, and may therefore be involved in spore wall development in basal plants. This suggests that the molecular genetics of spore/pollen development are highly conserved, despite the large morphological and functional differences between spores and pollen. Future work The use of high-throughput sequencing strategies and/or microarray experiments at an appropriate stage of ‘lower’ land plant sporogenesis will allow the identification of candidate genes likely to be involved in the development of the spore wall by way of comparison with those genes known to be involved in pollen wall development. Additionally, by conducting gene knock-out and gene swap experiments between ‘lower’ land plant species, such as the moss model species Physcomitrella patens, and the angiosperm model species arabidopsis it will be possible to

  15. Seasonal Trends in Airborne Fungal Spores in Coastal California Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morfin, J.; Crandall, S. G.; Gilbert, G. S.

    2014-12-01

    Airborne fungal spores cause disease in plants and animals and may trigger respiratory illnesses in humans. In terrestrial systems, fungal sporulation, germination, and persistence are strongly regulated by local meteorological conditions. However, few studies investigate how microclimate affects the spatio-temporal dynamics of airborne spores. We measured fungal aerospora abundance and microclimate at varying spatial and time scales in coastal California in three habitat-types: coast redwood forest, mixed-evergreen forest, and maritime chaparral. We asked: 1) is there a difference in total airborne spore concentration between habitats, 2) when do we see peak spore counts, and 3) do spore densities correlate with microclimate conditions? Fungal spores were caught from the air with a volumetric vacuum air spore trap during the wet season (January - March) in 2013 and 2014, as well as monthly in 2014. Initial results suggest that mixed-evergreen forests exhibit the highest amounts of spore abundance in both years compared to the other habitats. This may be due to either a higher diversity of host plants in mixed-evergreen forests or a rich leaf litter layer that may harbor a greater abundance of saprotrophic fungi. Based on pilot data, we predict that temperature and to a lesser degree, relative humidity, will be important microclimate predictors for high spore densities. These data are important for understanding when and under what weather conditions we can expect to see high levels of fungal spores in the air; this can be useful information for managers who are interested in treating diseased plants with fungicides.

  16. Decontamination Options for Drinking Water Contaminated with Bacillus anthracis Spores

    SciTech Connect

    Raber, E; Burklund, A

    2010-02-16

    Five parameters were evaluated with surrogates of Bacillus anthracis spores to determine effective decontamination options for use in a contaminated drinking water supply. The parameters were: (1) type of Bacillus spore surrogate (B. thuringiensis or B. atrophaeus); (2) spore concentration in suspension (10{sup 2} to 10{sup 6} spores/ml); (3) chemical characteristics of decontaminant [sodium dicholor-s-triazinetrione dihydrate (Dichlor), hydrogen peroxide, potassium peroxymonosulfate (Oxone), sodium hypochlorite, and VirkonS{reg_sign}]; (4) decontaminant concentration (0.01% to 5%); and (5) decontaminant exposure time (10 min to 24 hr). Results from 162 suspension tests with appropriate controls are reported. Hydrogen peroxide at a concentration of 5%, and Dichlor and sodium hypochlorite at a concentration of 2%, were effective at spore inactivation regardless of spore type tested, spore exposure time, or spore concentration evaluated. This is the first reported study of Dichlor as an effective decontaminant for B. anthracis spore surrogates. Dichlor's desirable characteristics of high oxidation potential, high level of free chlorine, and more neutral pH than that of other oxidizers evaluated appear to make it an excellent alternative. All three oxidizers were effective against B. atrophaeus spores in meeting EPA's biocide standard of greater than a 6 log kill after a 10-minute exposure time and at lower concentrations than typically reported for biocide use. Solutions of 5% VirkonS{reg_sign} and Oxone were less effective decontaminants than other options evaluated in this study and did not meet the EPA's efficacy standard for biocides. Differences in methods and procedures reported by other investigators make quantitative comparisons among studies difficult.

  17. Characterizing Aeroallergens by Infrared Spectroscopy of Fungal Spores and Pollen

    PubMed Central

    Zimmermann, Boris; Tkalčec, Zdenko; Mešić, Armin; Kohler, Achim

    2015-01-01

    Background Fungal spores and plant pollen cause respiratory diseases in susceptible individuals, such as asthma, allergic rhinitis and hypersensitivity pneumonitis. Aeroallergen monitoring networks are an important part of treatment strategies, but unfortunately traditional analysis is time consuming and expensive. We have explored the use of infrared spectroscopy of pollen and spores for an inexpensive and rapid characterization of aeroallergens. Methodology The study is based on measurement of spore and pollen samples by single reflectance attenuated total reflectance Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (SR-ATR FTIR). The experimental set includes 71 spore (Basidiomycota) and 121 pollen (Pinales, Fagales and Poales) samples. Along with fresh basidiospores, the study has been conducted on the archived samples collected within the last 50 years. Results The spectroscopic-based methodology enables clear spectral differentiation between pollen and spores, as well as the separation of confamiliar and congeneric species. In addition, the analysis of the scattering signals inherent in the infrared spectra indicates that the FTIR methodology offers indirect estimation of morphology of pollen and spores. The analysis of fresh and archived spores shows that chemical composition of spores is well preserved even after decades of storage, including the characteristic taxonomy-related signals. Therefore, biochemical analysis of fungal spores by FTIR could provide economical, reliable and timely methodologies for improving fungal taxonomy, as well as for fungal identification and monitoring. This proof of principle study shows the potential for using FTIR as a rapid tool in aeroallergen studies. In addition, the presented method is ready to be immediately implemented in biological and ecological studies for direct measurement of pollen and spores from flowers and sporocarps. PMID:25867755

  18. Functional Characterization of Clostridium difficile Spore Coat Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Permpoonpattana, Patima; Phetcharaburanin, Jutarop; Mikelsone, Anna; Dembek, Marcin; Tan, Sisareuth; Brisson, Marie-Clémence; La Ragione, Roberto; Brisson, Alain R.; Fairweather, Neil; Hong, Huynh A.

    2013-01-01

    Spores of Clostridium difficile play a key role in the dissemination of this important human pathogen, and until recently little has been known of their functional characteristics. Genes encoding six spore coat proteins (cotA, cotB, cotCB, cotD, cotE, and sodA) were disrupted by ClosTron insertional mutagenesis. Mutation of one gene, cotA, presented a major structural defect in spore assembly, with a clear misassembly of the outermost layers of the spore coat. The CotA protein is most probably subject to posttranslational modification and could play a key role in stabilizing the spore coat. Surprisingly, mutation of the other spore coat genes did not affect the integrity of the spore, although for the cotD, cotE, and sodA mutants, enzyme activity was reduced or abolished. This could imply that these enzymatic proteins are located in the exosporium or alternatively that they are structurally redundant. Of the spore coat proteins predicted to carry enzymatic activity, three were confirmed to be enzymes using both in vivo and in vitro methods, the latter using recombinant expressed proteins. These were a manganese catalase, encoded by cotD, a superoxide dismutase (SOD), encoded by sodA, and a bifunctional enzyme with peroxiredoxin and chitinase activity, encoded by cotE. These enzymes being exposed on the spore surface would play a role in coat polymerization and detoxification of H2O2. Two additional proteins, CotF (a tyrosine-rich protein and potential substrate for SodA) and CotG (a putative manganese catalase) were shown to be located at the spore surface. PMID:23335421

  19. Gene discovery in EST sequences from the wheat leaf rust fungus puccinia triticina sexual spores, asexual spores and haustoria, compared to other rust and corn smut fungi

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Background: Rust fungi are biotrophic basidiomycete plant pathogens that cause major diseases on plants and trees world-wide, affecting agriculture and forestry. Their biotrophic nature precludes many established molecular genetic manipulations and lines of research. The generation of genomic resour...

  20. Methods for neutralizing anthrax or anthrax spores

    DOEpatents

    Sloan, Mark A; Vivekandanda, Jeevalatha; Holwitt, Eric A; Kiel, Johnathan L

    2013-02-26

    The present invention concerns methods, compositions and apparatus for neutralizing bioagents, wherein bioagents comprise biowarfare agents, biohazardous agents, biological agents and/or infectious agents. The methods comprise exposing the bioagent to an organic semiconductor and exposing the bioagent and organic semiconductor to a source of energy. Although any source of energy is contemplated, in some embodiments the energy comprises visible light, ultraviolet, infrared, radiofrequency, microwave, laser radiation, pulsed corona discharge or electron beam radiation. Exemplary organic semiconductors include DAT and DALM. In certain embodiments, the organic semiconductor may be attached to one or more binding moieties, such as an antibody, antibody fragment, or nucleic acid ligand. Preferably, the binding moiety has a binding affinity for one or more bioagents to be neutralized. Other embodiments concern an apparatus comprising an organic semiconductor and an energy source. In preferred embodiments, the methods, compositions and apparatus are used for neutralizing anthrax spores.

  1. Effect of mechanical abrasion on the viability, disruption and germination of spores of Bacillus subtilis

    PubMed Central

    Jones, C.A.; Padula, N.L.; Setlow, P.

    2005-01-01

    Aims To elucidate the factors influencing the sensitivity of Bacillus subtilis spores to killing and disruption by mechanical abrasion, and the mechanism of stimulation of spore germination by abrasion. Methods and Results Spores of B. subtilis strains were abraded by shaking with glass beads in liquid or the dry state, and spore killing, disruption and germination were determined. Dormant spores were more resistant to killing and disruption by abrasion than were growing cells or germinated spores. However, dormant spores of the wild-type strain with or without most coat proteins removed, spores of strains with mutations causing spore coat defects, spores lacking their large depot of dipicolinic acid (DPA) and spores with defects in the germination process exhibited essentially identical rates of killing and disruption by abrasion. When spores lacking all nutrient germinant receptors were enumerated by plating directly on nutrient medium, abrasion increased the plating efficiency of these spores before killing them. Spores lacking all nutrient receptors and either of the two redundant cortex-lytic enzymes behaved similarly in this regard, but the plating efficiency of spores lacking both cortex-lytic enzymes was not stimulated by abrasion. Conclusions Dormant spores are more resistant to killing and disruption by abrasion than are growing cells or germinated spores, and neither the complete coats nor DPA are important in spore resistance to such treatments. Germination is not essential for spore killing by abrasion, although abrasion can trigger spore germination by activation of either of the spore’s cortex-lytic enzymes. Significance and Importance This work provides new insight into the mechanisms of the killing, disruption and germination of spores by abrasion and makes the surprising finding that at least much of the spore coat is not important in spore resistance to abrasion. PMID:16313421

  2. Elastic and inelastic light scattering from single bacterial spores in an optical trap allows the monitoring of spore germination dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Peng, Lixin; Chen, De; Setlow, Peter; Li, Yong-qing

    2009-01-01

    Raman scattering spectroscopy and elastic light scattering intensity (ESLI) were used to simultaneously measure levels of Ca-dipicolinic acid (CaDPA) and changes in spore morphology and refractive index during germination of individual B. subtilis spores with and without the two redundant enzymes (CLEs), CwlJ and SleB, that degrade spores’ peptidoglycan cortex. Conclusions from these measurements include: 1) CaDPA release from individual wild-type germinating spores was biphasic; in a first heterogeneous slow phase, Tlag, CaDPA levels decreased ∼15% and in the second phase ending at Trelease, remaining CaDPA was released rapidly; 2) in L-alanine germination of wild-type spores and spores lacking SleB: a) the ESLI rose ∼2-fold shortly before Tlag at T1; b) following Tlag, the ESLI again rose ∼2-fold at T2 when CaDPA levels had decreased ∼50%; and c) the ESLI reached its maximum value at ∼Trelease and then decreased; 3) in CaDPA germination of wild-type spores: a) Tlag increased and the first increase in ESLI occurred well before Tlag, consistent with different pathways for CaDPA and L-alanine germination; b) at Trelease the ESLI again reached its maximum value; 4) in L-alanine germination of spores lacking both CLEs and unable to degrade their cortex, the time ΔTrelease (Trelease–Tlag) for excretion of ≥75% of CaDPA was ∼15-fold higher than that for wild-type or sleB spores; and 5) spores lacking only CwlJ exhibited a similar, but not identical ESLI pattern during L-alanine germination to that seen with cwlJ sleB spores, and the high value for ΔTrelease. PMID:19374431

  3. Peptide Synthesis by Extracts from Bacillus subtilis Spores

    PubMed Central

    Bishop, Helen L.; Migita, Lloyd K.; Doi, Roy H.

    1969-01-01

    Cell-free peptide synthesis by extracts from vegetative cells and spores of Bacillus subtilis was analyzed and compared. The initial rate of phenylalanine incorporation in a polyuridylate-directed system was found to be in a similar range for the two extracts. However, spore extracts frequently incorporated less total phenylalanine as did the vegetative cell system. Optimal conditions for amino acid incorporation by spore extracts were found to be similar to those of vegetative cell extracts. Polyphenylalanine synthesis was stimulated by preincubation of both extracts prior to the addition of polyuridylic acid (poly U) and labeled phenylalanine. Both systems showed a dependence on an energy-generating system and were inhibited by chloramphenicol and puromycin. Ribonuclease, but not deoxyribonuclease, inhibited the reaction significantly. The presence of methionine transfer ribonucleic acid (tRNAF) and methionyl-tRNAF transformylase was demonstrated in spore extracts. An analysis of several aminoacyl-tRNAs in spores revealed that the relative amounts of these tRNAs were similar to those found in vegetative cells. Only lysine tRNA was found to be present in relatively greater amounts in spores. These results indicate that dormant spores of B. subtilis contain the machinery for the translation of genetic information. PMID:4984176

  4. Water Behavior in Bacterial Spores by Deuterium NMR Spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Dormant bacterial spores are able to survive long periods of time without nutrients, withstand harsh environmental conditions, and germinate into metabolically active bacteria when conditions are favorable. Numerous factors influence this hardiness, including the spore structure and the presence of compounds to protect DNA from damage. It is known that the water content of the spore core plays a role in resistance to degradation, but the exact state of water inside the core is a subject of discussion. Two main theories present themselves: either the water in the spore core is mostly immobile and the core and its components are in a glassy state, or the core is a gel with mobile water around components which themselves have limited mobility. Using deuterium solid-state NMR experiments, we examine the nature of the water in the spore core. Our data show the presence of unbound water, bound water, and deuterated biomolecules that also contain labile deuterons. Deuterium–hydrogen exchange experiments show that most of these deuterons are inaccessible by external water. We believe that these unreachable deuterons are in a chemical bonding state that prevents exchange. Variable-temperature NMR results suggest that the spore core is more rigid than would be expected for a gel-like state. However, our rigid core interpretation may only apply to dried spores whereas a gel core may exist in aqueous suspension. Nonetheless, the gel core, if present, is inaccessible to external water. PMID:24950158

  5. Dry-Heat Inactivation Kinetics of Naturally Occurring Spore Populations

    PubMed Central

    Bond, W. W.; Favero, M. S.; Petersen, N. J.; Marshall, J. H.

    1970-01-01

    Twenty-three soil samples were collected from areas of the United States where major spacecraft assembly and launch facilities are in operation. Soil samples were treated with ethyl alcohol, ultrasonic energy, and gross filtration. The resultant suspensions consisted of viable, naturally occurring bacterial spores and were used to inoculate stainless-steel strips. The strips were suspended in a forced air oven and assays were made at 5-min intervals for the number of viable spores. Most survivor curves were nonlinear. Subsequently, spore crops of heat-sensitive and heat-resistant soil isolates were found to have linear survivor curves at 125 C which were unaffected by the presence or absence of sterile soil particles from the parent sample. When two spore crops, one of which was heat-resistant and the other heat-sensitive, were mixed, the resultant nonlinear curves were unaffected by the presence or absence of sterile parent soil. Therefore, the survivor curves obtained originally with the soils were the result of heterogeneous spore populations rather than of protection afforded by soil particles in our test system. These results question the rationale both of assuming logarithmic death and of using decimal-reduction values obtained with subcultured standard reference spores in the derivation of dry-heat sterilization cycles for items contaminated with naturally occurring spore populations. PMID:5498605

  6. Infrared signatures to discriminate viability of autoclaved Bacillus spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schneider, Matthew D. W.; Valentine, Nancy B.; Johnson, Timothy J.

    2011-11-01

    Optical methods can offer good sensitivity for detecting small amounts of chemicals and biologicals, and as these methods mature, are some of the few techniques that can offer true standoff detection. For detection of biological species, determining the viability is clearly important: Certain species of gram-positive bacteria are capable of forming endospores, specialized structures that arise when living conditions become unfavorable or little growth medium is available. Spores are also resistant to many chemicals as well as changes in heat or pH; such spores can remain dormant from months to years until more favorable conditions arise, resulting in germination back to the vegetative state. This persistence characteristic of bacterial spores allows for contamination of a surface (e.g. food or medical equipment) even after the surface has been nominally cleaned. Bacterial spores have also been used as biological weapons, as in the case of B. anthracis. Thus, having rapid analytical methods to determine a spore's viability after attempts to clean a given environment is crucial. The increasing availability of portable spectrometers may provide a key to such rapid onsite analysis. The present study was designed to determine whether infrared spectroscopy may be used to differentiate between viable vs. dead B. subtilis and B. atrophaeus spores. Preliminary results show that the reproducible differences in the IR signatures can be used to identify the viable vs. the autoclaved (dead) spores.

  7. Endotrophic Calcium, Strontium, and Barium Spores of Bacillus megaterium and Bacillus cereus1

    PubMed Central

    Foerster, Harold F.; Foster, J. W.

    1966-01-01

    Foerster, Harold F. (The University of Texas, Austin), and J. W. Foster. Endotrophic calcium, strontium, and barium spores of Bacillus megaterium and Bacillus cereus. J. Bacteriol. 91:1333–1345. 1966.—Spores were produced by washed vegetative cells suspended in deionized water supplemented with CaCl2, SrCl2, or BaCl2. Normal, refractile spores were produced in each case; a portion of the barium spores lost refractility and darkened. Thin-section electron micrographs revealed no apparent anatomical differences among the three types of spores. Analyses revealed that the different spore types were enriched specifically in the metal to which they were exposed during sporogenesis. The calcium content of the strontium and the barium spores was very small. From binary equimolar mixtures of the metal salts, endotrophic spores accumulated both metals to nearly the same extent. Viability of the barium spores was considerably less than that of the other two types. Strontium and barium spores were heat-resistant; however, calcium was essential for maximal heat resistance. Significant differences existed in the rates of germination; calcium spores germinated fastest, strontium spores were slower, and barium spores were slowest. Calcium-barium and calcium-strontium spores germinated readily. Endotrophic calcium and strontium spores germinated without the prior heat activation essential for growth spores. Chemical germination of the different metal-type spores with n-dodecylamine took place at the same relative rates as physiological germination. Heat-induced release of dipicolinic acid occurred much faster with barium and strontium spores than with calcium spores. The washed “coat fraction” from disrupted spores contained little of the spore calcium but most of the spore barium. The metal in this fraction was released by dilute acid. The demineralized coats reabsorbed calcium and barium at neutral pH. Images PMID:4956334

  8. Ultrastructural Variability of the Exosporium Layer of Clostridium difficile Spores.

    PubMed

    Pizarro-Guajardo, Marjorie; Calderón-Romero, Paulina; Castro-Córdova, Pablo; Mora-Uribe, Paola; Paredes-Sabja, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    The anaerobic sporeformer Clostridium difficile is the leading cause of nosocomial antibiotic-associated diarrhea in developed and developing countries. The metabolically dormant spore form is considered the transmission, infectious, and persistent morphotype, and the outermost exosporium layer is likely to play a major role in spore-host interactions during the first contact of C. difficile spores with the host and for spore persistence during recurrent episodes of infection. Although some studies on the biology of the exosporium have been conducted (J. Barra-Carrasco et al., J Bacteriol 195:3863-3875, 2013, http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/JB.00369-13; J. Phetcharaburanin et al., Mol Microbiol 92:1025-1038, 2014, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/mmi.12611), there is a lack of information on the ultrastructural variability and stability of this layer. In this work, using transmission electron micrographs, we analyzed the variability of the spore's outermost layers in various strains and found distinctive variability in the ultrastructural morphotype of the exosporium within and between strains. Through transmission electron micrographs, we observed that although this layer was stable during spore purification, it was partially lost after 6 months of storage at room temperature. These observations were confirmed by indirect immunofluorescence microscopy, where a significant decrease in the levels of two exosporium markers, the N-terminal domain of BclA1 and CdeC, was observed. It is also noteworthy that the presence of the exosporium marker CdeC on spores obtained from C. difficile biofilms depended on the biofilm culture conditions and the strain used. Collectively, these results provide information on the heterogeneity and stability of the exosporium surface of C. difficile spores. These findings have direct implications and should be considered in the development of novel methods to diagnose and/or remove C. difficile spores by using exosporium proteins as targets. PMID

  9. The ecology of anthrax spores: tough but not invincible.

    PubMed Central

    Dragon, D C; Rennie, R P

    1995-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis is the causative agent of anthrax, a serious and often fatal disease of wild and domestic animals. Central to the persistence of anthrax in an area is the ability of B. anthracis to form long-lasting, highly resistant spores. Understanding the ecology of anthrax spores is essential if one hopes to control epidemics. Studies on the ecology of anthrax have found a correlation between the disease and specific soil factors, such as alkaline pH, high moisture, and high organic content. Researchers initially suggested that these factors influenced vegetative anthrax bacilli. However, subsequent research has shown that vegetative cells of B. anthracis have very specific nutrient and physiological requirements and are unlikely to survive outside a host. Review of the properties of spores of B. anthracis and other Bacillus species suggests that the specific soil factors linked to epidemic areas reflect important environmental conditions that aid the anthrax spores in causing epidemics. Specifically, high levels of calcium in the soil may help to maintain spore vitality for prolonged periods, thereby increasing the chance of spores encountering and infecting a new host. Cycles of runoff and evaporation may collect spores dispersed from previous epidemics into storage areas, thereby concentrating them. Uptake of large doses of viable spores from storage areas by susceptible animals, via altered feeding or breeding behavior, may then allow the bacterium to establish infection and cause a new epidemic. Literature search for this review was done by scanning the Life Sciences Collection 1982-1994 using the keywords "anthrax" and "calcium and spore." Images Figure 1. PMID:7773917

  10. Sterilization Resistance of Bacterial Spores Explained with Water Chemistry.

    PubMed

    Friedline, Anthony W; Zachariah, Malcolm M; Middaugh, Amy N; Garimella, Ravindranath; Vaishampayan, Parag A; Rice, Charles V

    2015-11-01

    Bacterial spores can survive for long periods without nutrients and in harsh environmental conditions. This survival is influenced by the structure of the spore, the presence of protective compounds, and water retention. These compounds, and the physical state of water in particular, allow some species of bacterial spores to survive sterilization schemes with hydrogen peroxide and UV light. The chemical nature of the spore core and its water has been a subject of some contention and the chemical environment of the water impacts resistance paradigms. Either the spore has a glassy core, where water is immobilized along with other core components, or the core is gel-like with mobile water diffusion. These properties affect the movement of peroxide and radical species, and hence resistance. Deuterium solid-state NMR experiments are useful for examining the nature of the water inside the spore. Previous work in our lab with spores of Bacillus subtilis indicate that, for spores, the core water is in a more immobilized state than expected for the gel-like core theory, suggesting a glassy core environment. Here, we report deuterium solid-state NMR observations of the water within UV- and peroxide-resistant spores from Bacillus pumilus SAFR-032. Variable-temperature NMR experiments indicate no change in the line shape after heating to 50 °C, but an overall decrease in signal after heating to 100 °C. These results show glass-like core dynamics within B. pumilus SAFR-032 that may be the potential source of its known UV-resistance properties. The observed NMR traits can be attributed to the presence of an exosporium containing additional labile deuterons that can aid in the deactivation of sterilizing agents. PMID:26435315