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Sample records for mer mediated microbial

  1. Mass dependent stable isotope fractionation of mercury during mer mediated microbial degradation of monomethylmercury

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kritee, K.; Barkay, Tamar; Blum, Joel D.

    2009-03-01

    Controlling bioaccumulation of toxic monomethylmercury (MMHg) in aquatic food chains requires differentiation between biotic and abiotic pathways that lead to its production and degradation. Recent mercury (Hg) stable isotope measurements of natural samples suggest that Hg isotope ratios can be a powerful proxy for tracing dominant Hg transforming pathways in aquatic ecosystems. Specifically, it has been shown that photo-degradation of MMHg causes both mass dependent (MDF) and mass independent fractionation (MIF) of Hg isotopes. Because the extent of MDF and MIF observed in natural samples (e.g., fish, soil and sediments) can potentially be used to determine the relative importance of pathways leading to MMHg accumulation, it is important to determine the potential role of microbial pathways in contributing to the fractionation, especially MIF, observed in these samples. This study reports the extent of fractionation of Hg stable isotopes during degradation of MMHg to volatile elemental Hg and methane via the microbial Hg resistance ( mer) pathway in Escherichia coli carrying a mercury resistance ( mer) genetic system on a multi-copy plasmid. During experimental microbial degradation of MMHg, MMHg remaining in reactors became progressively heavier (increasing δ202Hg) with time and underwent mass dependent Rayleigh fractionation with a fractionation factor α202/198 = 1.0004 ± 0.0002 (2SD). However, MIF was not observed in any of the microbial MMHg degradation experiments indicating that the isotopic signature left by mer mediated MMHg degradation is significantly different from fractionation observed during DOC mediated photo-degradation of MMHg. Additionally, a clear suppression of Hg isotope fractionation, both during reduction of Hg(II) and degradation of MMHg, was observed when the cell densities increased, possibly due to a reduction in substrate bioavailability. We propose a multi-step framework for understanding the extent of fractionation seen in our MMHg

  2. Microbially mediated phosphine emission.

    PubMed

    Roels, Joris; Huyghe, Gwen; Verstraete, Willy

    2005-02-15

    There is still a lot of controversy in literature concerning the question whether a biochemical system exists enabling micro-organisms to reduce phosphate to phosphine gas. The search for so-called 'de novo synthesised' phosphine is complicated by the fact that soils, slurries, sludges, etc., which are often used as inocula, usually contain matrix bound phosphine (MBP). Matrix bound phosphine is a general term used to indicate non-gaseous reduced phosphorus compounds that are transformed into phosphine gas upon reaction with bases or acids. A study was carried out to compare the different digestion methods, used to transform matrix bound phosphine into phosphine gas. It was demonstrated that caustic and acidic digestion methods should be used to measure the matrix bound phosphine of the inoculum prior to inoculation to avoid false positive results concerning de novo synthesis. This is especially true if anthropogenically influenced inocula possibly containing minute steel or aluminium particles are used. The comparative study on different digestion methods also revealed that the fraction of phosphorus in mild steel, converted to phosphine during acid corrosion depended on the temperature. Following these preliminary studies, anaerobic growth experiments were set up using different inocula and media to study the emission of phosphine gas. Phosphine was detected in the headspace gases and its quantity and timeframe of emission depended on the medium composition, suggesting microbially mediated formation of the gas. The amount of phosphine emitted during the growth experiments never exceeded the bound phosphine present in inocula, prior to inoculation. Hence, de novo synthesis of phosphine from phosphate could not be demonstrated. Yet, microbially mediated conversion to phosphine of hitherto unknown reduced phosphorus compounds in the inoculum was evidenced. PMID:15713333

  3. Mer receptor tyrosine kinase mediates both tethering and phagocytosis of apoptotic cells

    PubMed Central

    Dransfield, I; Zagórska, A; Lew, E D; Michail, K; Lemke, G

    2015-01-01

    Billions of inflammatory leukocytes die and are phagocytically cleared each day. This regular renewal facilitates the normal termination of inflammatory responses, suppressing pro-inflammatory mediators and inducing their anti-inflammatory counterparts. Here we investigate the role of the receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) Mer and its ligands Protein S and Gas6 in the initial recognition and capture of apoptotic cells (ACs) by macrophages. We demonstrate extremely rapid binding kinetics of both ligands to phosphatidylserine (PtdSer)-displaying ACs, and show that ACs can be co-opsonized with multiple PtdSer opsonins. We further show that macrophage phagocytosis of ACs opsonized with Mer ligands can occur independently of a requirement for αV integrins. Finally, we demonstrate a novel role for Mer in the tethering of ACs to the macrophage surface, and show that Mer-mediated tethering and subsequent AC engulfment can be distinguished by their requirement for Mer kinase activity. Our results identify Mer as a receptor uniquely capable of both tethering ACs to the macrophage surface and driving their subsequent internalization. PMID:25695599

  4. Structural basis of the mercury(II)-mediated conformational switching of the dual-function transcriptional regulator MerR

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Chih-Chiang; Lin, Li-Ying; Zou, Xiao-Wei; Huang, Chieh-Chen; Chan, Nei-Li

    2015-01-01

    The mer operon confers bacterial resistance to inorganic mercury (Hg2+) and organomercurials by encoding proteins involved in sensing, transport and detoxification of these cytotoxic agents. Expression of the mer operon is under tight control by the dual-function transcriptional regulator MerR. The metal-free, apo MerR binds to the mer operator/promoter region as a repressor to block transcription initiation, but is converted into an activator upon Hg2+-binding. To understand how MerR interacts with Hg2+ and how Hg2+-binding modulates MerR function, we report here the crystal structures of apo and Hg2+-bound MerR from Bacillus megaterium, corresponding respectively to the repressor and activator conformation of MerR. To our knowledge, the apo-MerR structure represents the first visualization of a MerR family member in its intact and inducer-free form. And the Hg2+-MerR structure offers the first view of a triligated Hg2+-thiolate center in a metalloprotein, confirming that MerR binds Hg2+ via trigonal planar coordination geometry. Structural comparison revealed the conformational transition of MerR is coupled to the assembly/disassembly of a buried Hg2+ binding site, thereby providing a structural basis for the Hg2+-mediated functional switching of MerR. The pronounced Hg2+-induced repositioning of the MerR DNA-binding domains suggests a plausible mechanism for the transcriptional regulation of the mer operon. PMID:26150423

  5. Microbially mediated mineral carbonation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Power, I. M.; Wilson, S. A.; Dipple, G. M.; Southam, G.

    2010-12-01

    Mineral carbonation involves silicate dissolution and carbonate precipitation, which are both natural processes that microorganisms are able to mediate in near surface environments (Ferris et al., 1994; Eq. 1). (Ca,Mg)SiO3 + 2H2CO3 + H2O → (Ca,Mg)CO3 + H2O + H4SiO4 + O2 (1) Cyanobacteria are photoautotrophs with cell surface characteristics and metabolic processes involving inorganic carbon that can induce carbonate precipitation. This occurs partly by concentrating cations within their net-negative cell envelope and through the alkalinization of their microenvironment (Thompson & Ferris, 1990). Regions with mafic and ultramafic bedrock, such as near Atlin, British Columbia, Canada, represent the best potential sources of feedstocks for mineral carbonation. The hydromagnesite playas near Atlin are a natural biogeochemical model for the carbonation of magnesium silicate minerals (Power et al., 2009). Field-based studies at Atlin and corroborating laboratory experiments demonstrate the ability of a microbial consortium dominated by filamentous cyanobacteria to induce the precipitation of carbonate minerals. Phototrophic microbes, such as cyanobacteria, have been proposed as a means for producing biodiesel and other value added products because of their efficiency as solar collectors and low requirement for valuable, cultivable land in comparison to crops (Dismukes et al., 2008). Carbonate precipitation and biomass production could be facilitated using specifically designed ponds to collect waters rich in dissolved cations (e.g., Mg2+ and Ca2+), which would allow for evapoconcentration and provide an appropriate environment for growth of cyanobacteria. Microbially mediated carbonate precipitation does not require large quantities of energy or chemicals needed for industrial systems that have been proposed for rapid carbon capture and storage via mineral carbonation (e.g., Lackner et al., 1995). Therefore, this biogeochemical approach may represent a readily

  6. Environmental significance of the potential for mer(Tn21)-mediated reduction of Hg2+ to Hg0 in natural waters.

    PubMed Central

    Barkay, T; Liebert, C; Gillman, M

    1989-01-01

    The role of mer(Tn21) in the adaptation of aquatic microbial communities to Hg2+ was investigated. Elemental mercury was the sole product of Hg2+ volatilization by freshwater and saline water microbial communities. Bacterial activity was responsible for biotransformation because most microeucaryotes did not survive the exposure conditions, and removal of larger microbes (greater than 1 micromole) from adapted communities did not significantly (P greater than 0.01) reduce Hg2+ volatilization rates. DNA sequences homologous to mer(Tn21) were found in 50% of Hg2+-resistant bacterial strains representing two freshwater communities, but in only 12% of strains representing two saline communities (the difference was highly significant; P less than 0.001). Thus, mer(Tn21) played a significant role in Hg2+ resistance among strains isolated from fresh waters, in which microbial activity had a limited role in Hg2+ volatilization. In saline water environments in which microbially mediated volatilization was the major mechanism of Hg2+ loss, other bacterial genes coded for this biotransformation. PMID:2547336

  7. HYBRIDIZATION OF DNA PROBES WITH WHOLE-COMMUNITY GENOMES FOR DETECTION OF GENES THAT ENCODE MICROBIAL RESPONSES TO POLLUTANTS: MER GENES AND HG2+ RESISTANCE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Nucleic acids extracted from microbial biomass were hybridized with probes representing four mer operons, to detect genes encoding adaptation to Hg2+. An enrichment in sequences similar to the mer genes of transposon 501 occurred during adaptation in a freshwater community. In an...

  8. Detection of Genes Involved in Biodegradation and Biotransformation in Microbial Communities by Using 50-Mer Oligonucleotide Microarrays

    PubMed Central

    Rhee, Sung-Keun; Liu, Xueduan; Wu, Liyou; Chong, Song C.; Wan, Xiufeng; Zhou, Jizhong

    2004-01-01

    To effectively monitor biodegrading populations, a comprehensive 50-mer-based oligonucleotide microarray was developed based on most of the 2,402 known genes and pathways involved in biodegradation and metal resistance. This array contained 1,662 unique and group-specific probes with <85% similarity to their nontarget sequences. Based on artificial probes, our results showed that under hybridization conditions of 50°C and 50% formamide, the 50-mer microarray hybridization can differentiate sequences having <88% similarity. Specificity tests with representative pure cultures indicated that the designed probes on the arrays appeared to be specific to their corresponding target genes. The detection limit was ∼5 to 10 ng of genomic DNA in the absence of background DNA and 50 to 100 ng of pure-culture genomic DNA in the presence of background DNA or 1.3 × 107 cells in the presence of background RNA. Strong linear relationships between the signal intensity and the target DNA and RNA were observed (r2 = 0.95 to 0.99). Application of this type of microarray to analyze naphthalene-amended enrichment and soil microcosms demonstrated that microflora changed differently depending on the incubation conditions. While the naphthalene-degrading genes from Rhodococcus-type microorganisms were dominant in naphthalene-degrading enrichments, the genes involved in naphthalene (and polyaromatic hydrocarbon and nitrotoluene) degradation from gram-negative microorganisms, such as Ralstonia, Comamonas, and Burkholderia, were most abundant in the soil microcosms. In contrast to general conceptions, naphthalene-degrading genes from Pseudomonas were not detected, although Pseudomonas is widely known as a model microorganism for studying naphthalene degradation. The real-time PCR analysis with four representative genes showed that the microarray-based quantification was very consistent with real-time PCR (r2 = 0.74). In addition, application of the arrays to both polyaromatic

  9. Opposing Roles of Tyrosine Kinase Receptors Mer and Axl Determine Clinical Outcomes in Experimental Immune-Mediated Nephritis.

    PubMed

    Zhen, Yuxuan; Priest, Stephen O; Shao, Wen-Hai

    2016-09-15

    Glomerulonephritis is one of the most severe manifestations of systemic lupus erythematosus, with considerable morbidity and mortality. There remains a major unmet need for successful management of lupus nephritis. TAM family receptor tyrosine kinases (Mer and Axl) play an important role in the maintenance of immune homeostasis in the kidney. Mer is constitutively expressed in the glomeruli; Axl expression is inducible in glomeruli under inflammatory conditions. To investigate the distinct functions of Axl and Mer in lupus nephritis, we compared the severity of nephrotoxic serum glomerulonephritis in wild-type (WT), Axl-knockout (KO), Mer-KO, and Axl/Mer-KO mice. Mer-KO mice developed severe glomerulonephritis, with significantly decreased survival and increased blood urea nitrogen levels compared with WT mice given the same treatment. However, nephrotoxic serum-treated Axl-KO mice had significantly increased survival rates and improved renal function compared with similarly treated WT, Mer-KO, and Axl/Mer-KO mice. Interestingly, mice lacking both Axl and Mer developed kidney inflammation comparable to WT mice. Western blot analysis revealed significantly increased Stat3 phosphorylation and caspase-1 activation in the kidneys of nephritic Mer-KO mice. In contrast, Axl-deficient nephrotoxic serum-injected mice showed decreased Akt phosphorylation and Bcl-xL upregulation. Thus, the reciprocal activation of Axl and Mer receptor tyrosine kinases has a major impact on the outcome of renal inflammation. PMID:27527599

  10. Real-Time Sequence-Validated Loop-Mediated Isothermal Amplification Assays for Detection of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV)

    PubMed Central

    Bhadra, Sanchita; Jiang, Yu Sherry; Kumar, Mia R.; Johnson, Reed F.; Hensley, Lisa E.; Ellington, Andrew D.

    2015-01-01

    The Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), an emerging human coronavirus, causes severe acute respiratory illness with a 35% mortality rate. In light of the recent surge in reported infections we have developed asymmetric five-primer reverse transcription loop-mediated isothermal amplification (RT-LAMP) assays for detection of MERS-CoV. Isothermal amplification assays will facilitate the development of portable point-of-care diagnostics that are crucial for management of emerging infections. The RT-LAMP assays are designed to amplify MERS-CoV genomic loci located within the open reading frame (ORF)1a and ORF1b genes and upstream of the E gene. Additionally we applied one-step strand displacement probes (OSD) for real-time sequence-specific verification of LAMP amplicons. Asymmetric amplification effected by incorporating a single loop primer in each assay accelerated the time-to-result of the OSD-RT-LAMP assays. The resulting assays could detect 0.02 to 0.2 plaque forming units (PFU) (5 to 50 PFU/ml) of MERS-CoV in infected cell culture supernatants within 30 to 50 min and did not cross-react with common human respiratory pathogens. PMID:25856093

  11. k-merSNP discovery: Software for alignment-and reference-free scalable SNP discovery, phylogenetics, and annotation for hundreds of microbial genomes

    Energy Science and Technology Software Center (ESTSC)

    2014-11-18

    With the flood of whole genome finished and draft microbial sequences, we need faster, more scalable bioinformatics tools for sequence comparison. An algorithm is described to find single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in whole genome data. It scales to hundreds of bacterial or viral genomes, and can be used for finished and/or draft genomes available as unassembled contigs or raw, unassembled reads. The method is fast to compute, finding SNPs and building a SNP phylogeny inmore » minutes to hours, depending on the size and diversity of the input sequences. The SNP-based trees that result are consistent with known taxonomy and trees determined in other studies. The approach we describe can handle many gigabases of sequence in a single run. The algorithm is based on k-mer analysis.« less

  12. k-merSNP discovery: Software for alignment-and reference-free scalable SNP discovery, phylogenetics, and annotation for hundreds of microbial genomes

    SciTech Connect

    2014-11-18

    With the flood of whole genome finished and draft microbial sequences, we need faster, more scalable bioinformatics tools for sequence comparison. An algorithm is described to find single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in whole genome data. It scales to hundreds of bacterial or viral genomes, and can be used for finished and/or draft genomes available as unassembled contigs or raw, unassembled reads. The method is fast to compute, finding SNPs and building a SNP phylogeny in minutes to hours, depending on the size and diversity of the input sequences. The SNP-based trees that result are consistent with known taxonomy and trees determined in other studies. The approach we describe can handle many gigabases of sequence in a single run. The algorithm is based on k-mer analysis.

  13. Microbial mediation of complex subterranean mineral structures

    PubMed Central

    Tisato, Nicola; Torriani, Stefano F. F.; Monteux, Sylvain; Sauro, Francesco; De Waele, Jo; Tavagna, Maria Luisa; D’Angeli, Ilenia M.; Chailloux, Daniel; Renda, Michel; Eglinton, Timothy I.; Bontognali, Tomaso R. R.

    2015-01-01

    Helictites—an enigmatic type of mineral structure occurring in some caves—differ from classical speleothems as they develop with orientations that defy gravity. While theories for helictite formation have been forwarded, their genesis remains equivocal. Here, we show that a remarkable suite of helictites occurring in Asperge Cave (France) are formed by biologically-mediated processes, rather than abiotic processes as had hitherto been proposed. Morphological and petro-physical properties are inconsistent with mineral precipitation under purely physico-chemical control. Instead, microanalysis and molecular-biological investigation reveals the presence of a prokaryotic biofilm intimately associated with the mineral structures. We propose that microbially-influenced mineralization proceeds within a gliding biofilm which serves as a nucleation site for CaCO3, and where chemotaxis influences the trajectory of mineral growth, determining the macroscopic morphology of the speleothems. The influence of biofilms may explain the occurrence of similar speleothems in other caves worldwide, and sheds light on novel biomineralization processes. PMID:26510667

  14. Microbial mediation of complex subterranean mineral structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tisato, Nicola; Torriani, Stefano F. F.; Monteux, Sylvain; Sauro, Francesco; de Waele, Jo; Tavagna, Maria Luisa; D'Angeli, Ilenia M.; Chailloux, Daniel; Renda, Michel; Eglinton, Timothy I.; Bontognali, Tomaso R. R.

    2015-10-01

    Helictites—an enigmatic type of mineral structure occurring in some caves—differ from classical speleothems as they develop with orientations that defy gravity. While theories for helictite formation have been forwarded, their genesis remains equivocal. Here, we show that a remarkable suite of helictites occurring in Asperge Cave (France) are formed by biologically-mediated processes, rather than abiotic processes as had hitherto been proposed. Morphological and petro-physical properties are inconsistent with mineral precipitation under purely physico-chemical control. Instead, microanalysis and molecular-biological investigation reveals the presence of a prokaryotic biofilm intimately associated with the mineral structures. We propose that microbially-influenced mineralization proceeds within a gliding biofilm which serves as a nucleation site for CaCO3, and where chemotaxis influences the trajectory of mineral growth, determining the macroscopic morphology of the speleothems. The influence of biofilms may explain the occurrence of similar speleothems in other caves worldwide, and sheds light on novel biomineralization processes.

  15. Structural basis for the neutralization of MERS-CoV by a human monoclonal antibody MERS-27

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Xiaojuan; Zhang, Senyan; Jiang, Liwei; Cui, Ye; Li, Dongxia; Wang, Dongli; Wang, Nianshuang; Fu, Lili; Shi, Xuanlin; Li, Ziqiang; Zhang, Linqi; Wang, Xinquan

    2015-01-01

    The recently reported Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) causes severe respiratory illness in humans with an approximately 30% mortality rate. The envelope spike glycoprotein on the surface of MERS-CoV mediates receptor binding, membrane fusion, and viral entry. We previously reported two human monoclonal antibodies that target the receptor binding domain (RBD) of the spike and exhibit strong neutralization activity against live and pesudotyped MERS-CoV infection. Here we determined the crystal structure of MERS-CoV RBD bound to the Fab fragment of MERS-27 antibody at 3.20 Å resolution. The MERS-27 epitope in the RBD overlaps with the binding site of the MERS-CoV receptor DPP4. Further biochemical, viral entry, and neutralization analyses identified two critical residues in the RBD for both MERS-27 recognition and DPP4 binding. One of the residues, Trp535, was found to function as an anchor residue at the binding interface with MERS-27. Upon receptor binding, Trp535 interacts with the N-linked carbohydrate moiety of DPP4. Thus, MERS-27 inhibits MERS-CoV infection by directly blocking both protein-protein and protein-carbohydrate interactions between MERS-CoV RBD and DPP4. These results shed light on the molecular basis of MERS-27 neutralization and will assist in the optimization of MERS-27 as a tool to combat MERS-CoV infection. PMID:26281793

  16. Redox regime shifts in microbially mediated biogeochemical cycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bush, T.; Butler, I. B.; Free, A.; Allen, R. J.

    2015-06-01

    Understanding how the Earth's biogeochemical cycles respond to environmental change is a prerequisite for the prediction and mitigation of the effects of anthropogenic perturbations. Microbial populations mediate key steps in these cycles, yet they are often crudely represented in biogeochemical models. Here, we show that microbial population dynamics can qualitatively affect the response of biogeochemical cycles to environmental change. Using simple and generic mathematical models, we find that nutrient limitations on microbial population growth can lead to regime shifts, in which the redox state of a biogeochemical cycle changes dramatically as the availability of a redox-controlling species, such as oxygen or acetate, crosses a threshold (a "tipping point"). These redox regime shifts occur in parameter ranges that are relevant to the present-day sulfur cycle in the natural environment and the present-day nitrogen cycle in eutrophic terrestrial environments. These shifts may also have relevance to iron cycling in the iron-containing Proterozoic and Archean oceans. We show that redox regime shifts also occur in models with physically realistic modifications, such as additional terms, chemical states, or microbial populations. Our work reveals a possible new mechanism by which regime shifts can occur in nutrient-cycling ecosystems and biogeochemical cycles, and highlights the importance of considering microbial population dynamics in models of biogeochemical cycles.

  17. Microbially Mediated Kinetic Sulfur Isotope Fractionation: Reactive Transport Modeling Benchmark

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wanner, C.; Druhan, J. L.; Cheng, Y.; Amos, R. T.; Steefel, C. I.; Ajo Franklin, J. B.

    2014-12-01

    Microbially mediated sulfate reduction is a ubiquitous process in many subsurface systems. Isotopic fractionation is characteristic of this anaerobic process, since sulfate reducing bacteria (SRB) favor the reduction of the lighter sulfate isotopologue (S32O42-) over the heavier isotopologue (S34O42-). Detection of isotopic shifts have been utilized as a proxy for the onset of sulfate reduction in subsurface systems such as oil reservoirs and aquifers undergoing uranium bioremediation. Reactive transport modeling (RTM) of kinetic sulfur isotope fractionation has been applied to field and laboratory studies. These RTM approaches employ different mathematical formulations in the representation of kinetic sulfur isotope fractionation. In order to test the various formulations, we propose a benchmark problem set for the simulation of kinetic sulfur isotope fractionation during microbially mediated sulfate reduction. The benchmark problem set is comprised of four problem levels and is based on a recent laboratory column experimental study of sulfur isotope fractionation. Pertinent processes impacting sulfur isotopic composition such as microbial sulfate reduction and dispersion are included in the problem set. To date, participating RTM codes are: CRUNCHTOPE, TOUGHREACT, MIN3P and THE GEOCHEMIST'S WORKBENCH. Preliminary results from various codes show reasonable agreement for the problem levels simulating sulfur isotope fractionation in 1D.

  18. Biotic interactions mediate soil microbial feedbacks to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Crowther, Thomas W.; Thomas, Stephen M.; Maynard, Daniel S.; Baldrian, Petr; Covey, Kristofer; Frey, Serita D.; van Diepen, Linda T. A.; Bradford, Mark A.

    2015-01-01

    Decomposition of organic material by soil microbes generates an annual global release of 50–75 Pg carbon to the atmosphere, ∼7.5–9 times that of anthropogenic emissions worldwide. This process is sensitive to global change factors, which can drive carbon cycle–climate feedbacks with the potential to enhance atmospheric warming. Although the effects of interacting global change factors on soil microbial activity have been a widespread ecological focus, the regulatory effects of interspecific interactions are rarely considered in climate feedback studies. We explore the potential of soil animals to mediate microbial responses to warming and nitrogen enrichment within a long-term, field-based global change study. The combination of global change factors alleviated the bottom-up limitations on fungal growth, stimulating enzyme production and decomposition rates in the absence of soil animals. However, increased fungal biomass also stimulated consumption rates by soil invertebrates, restoring microbial process rates to levels observed under ambient conditions. Our results support the contemporary theory that top-down control in soil food webs is apparent only in the absence of bottom-up limitation. As such, when global change factors alleviate the bottom-up limitations on microbial activity, top-down control becomes an increasingly important regulatory force with the capacity to dampen the strength of positive carbon cycle–climate feedbacks. PMID:26038557

  19. Biotic interactions mediate soil microbial feedbacks to climate change.

    PubMed

    Crowther, Thomas W; Thomas, Stephen M; Maynard, Daniel S; Baldrian, Petr; Covey, Kristofer; Frey, Serita D; van Diepen, Linda T A; Bradford, Mark A

    2015-06-01

    Decomposition of organic material by soil microbes generates an annual global release of 50-75 Pg carbon to the atmosphere, ∼7.5-9 times that of anthropogenic emissions worldwide. This process is sensitive to global change factors, which can drive carbon cycle-climate feedbacks with the potential to enhance atmospheric warming. Although the effects of interacting global change factors on soil microbial activity have been a widespread ecological focus, the regulatory effects of interspecific interactions are rarely considered in climate feedback studies. We explore the potential of soil animals to mediate microbial responses to warming and nitrogen enrichment within a long-term, field-based global change study. The combination of global change factors alleviated the bottom-up limitations on fungal growth, stimulating enzyme production and decomposition rates in the absence of soil animals. However, increased fungal biomass also stimulated consumption rates by soil invertebrates, restoring microbial process rates to levels observed under ambient conditions. Our results support the contemporary theory that top-down control in soil food webs is apparent only in the absence of bottom-up limitation. As such, when global change factors alleviate the bottom-up limitations on microbial activity, top-down control becomes an increasingly important regulatory force with the capacity to dampen the strength of positive carbon cycle-climate feedbacks. PMID:26038557

  20. Nutrient Limitation of Microbial Mediated Decomposition and Arctic Soil Chronology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melle, C. J.; Darrouzet-Nardi, A.; Wallenstein, M. D.

    2012-12-01

    effective soil age. My research is focused on addressing the questions of the extent of microbial N limitation in arctic tundra soils, the potential for co-limitation of labile C despite a high SOC environment, and the dependence, if any, nutrient limitation may have on the effective age of the soil. I have addressed these questions by conducting a laboratory soil incubation of factorial design with treatments of amended glucose, amended ammonium nitrate, and a control consisting of an addition of an equivalent volume of deionized water. Moist acid tundra soils possessing similar soil properties from two arctic sites of close proximity yet with varying deglaciation chronologies were utilized in my study. Soil properties of C-mineralization via respiration, microbial biomass, and nitrogen content in the forms of ammonium, nitrate, and total free amino acids and microbial extra-cellular enzyme production were assayed to determine the microbial response to the experimental treatments. Through the results of this work, I hope to better our understanding of biogeochemical cycling within arctic tundra ecosystems and the response to climate change by contributing to existing knowledge of nutrient limitation on microbial mediated decomposition of SOC in the arctic and how this may differ in soils of varying effective age.

  1. Embryo fossilization is a biological process mediated by microbial biofilms

    PubMed Central

    Raff, Elizabeth C.; Schollaert, Kaila L.; Nelson, David E.; Donoghue, Philip C. J.; Thomas, Ceri-Wyn; Turner, F. Rudolf; Stein, Barry D.; Dong, Xiping; Bengtson, Stefan; Huldtgren, Therese; Stampanoni, Marco; Chongyu, Yin; Raff, Rudolf A.

    2008-01-01

    Fossilized embryos with extraordinary cellular preservation appear in the Late Neoproterozoic and Cambrian, coincident with the appearance of animal body fossils. It has been hypothesized that microbial processes are responsible for preservation and mineralization of organic tissues. However, the actions of microbes in preservation of embryos have not been demonstrated experimentally. Here, we show that bacterial biofilms assemble rapidly in dead marine embryos and form remarkable pseudomorphs in which the bacterial biofilm replaces and exquisitely models details of cellular organization and structure. The experimental model was the decay of cleavage stage embryos similar in size and morphology to fossil embryos. The data show that embryo preservation takes place in 3 distinct steps: (i) blockage of autolysis by reducing or anaerobic conditions, (ii) rapid formation of microbial biofilms that consume the embryo but form a replica that retains cell organization and morphology, and (iii) bacterially catalyzed mineralization. Major bacterial taxa in embryo decay biofilms were identified by using 16S rDNA sequencing. Decay processes were similar in different taphonomic conditions, but the composition of bacterial populations depended on specific conditions. Experimental taphonomy generates preservation states similar to those in fossil embryos. The data show how fossilization of soft tissues in sediments can be mediated by bacterial replacement and mineralization, providing a foundation for experimentally creating biofilms from defined microbial species to model fossilization as a biological process. PMID:19047625

  2. Microbially Mediated Glass Alteration in the Geological Record: Textural clues for Microbial Functions.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Staudigel, H.; Furnes, H.; McLoughlin, N.; Banerjee, N.

    2007-12-01

    Fe and Mn oxidizing microbes interact with their environment through the microbially mediated formation of Fe/Mn oxides and through the corrosion textures they may leave behind in the solids they colonize and from which they extract nutrients. Understanding the geo-biology of Fe and Mn oxidation may focus on the study of the microbes themselves, the mineral products, its biocorrosion features and the relationships between these types of observations. We have reviewed our own data on glass bio-corrosion and in particular the wider literature on microbial mineral tunneling to develop a two stage biocorrosion model for volcanic glass that offers feedback for our understanding of the mechanisms and the dynamics of microbial dissolution. Traces of microbially mediated dissolution of volcanic glass are commonly observed in volcanic glass found in submarine volcanoes on the seafloor, and in uplifted submarine volcanoes of almost any geological age back to the origin of life. Two main bioalteration textures care observed, granular and tubular. Based on a comparison of these features in particular with tunneling by ectomycorrhizal fungi, we propose two distinct types of biocorrosion that affects glass: (1) Granular alteration textures, made up of colonies of microbe-sized, near spherical mineral - filled cavities that form irregular clusters ranging to a tens of micron thick bands at the glas surfaces. These granular textures are interpreted as the result of microbial colonization. accompanied by dissolution of the glass in their contact surface, deposition of authigenic minerals and the formation of a biofilm, that eventually seals the glass from easy access by seawater for hydration, or from microbes accessing Fe (II) in the glass. (2) The most spectacular bioalteration feature, repesented by the formation of tubes cannot be easily formed by the former mechanism because near spherical, individual microbes are likely not to produce the directionality that is required to

  3. MER SPICE Interface

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sayfi, Elias

    2004-01-01

    MER SPICE Interface is a software module for use in conjunction with the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission and the SPICE software system of the Navigation and Ancillary Information Facility (NAIF) at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. (SPICE is used to acquire, record, and disseminate engineering, navigational, and other ancillary data describing circumstances under which data were acquired by spaceborne scientific instruments.) Given a Spacecraft Clock value, MER SPICE Interface extracts MER-specific data from SPICE kernels (essentially, raw data files) and calculates values for Planet Day Number, Local Solar Longitude, Local Solar Elevation, Local Solar Azimuth, and Local Solar Time (UTC). MER SPICE Interface was adapted from a subroutine, denoted m98SpiceIF written by Payam Zamani, that was intended to calculate SPICE values for the Mars Polar Lander. The main difference between MER SPICE Interface and m98SpiceIf is that MER SPICE Interface does not explicitly call CHRONOS, a time-conversion program that is part of a library of utility subprograms within SPICE. Instead, MER SPICE Interface mimics some portions of the CHRONOS code, the advantage being that it executes much faster and can efficiently be called from a pipeline of events in a parallel processing environment.

  4. Microbial-mediated method for metal oxide nanoparticle formation

    SciTech Connect

    Rondinone, Adam J.; Moon, Ji Won; Love, Lonnie J.; Yeary, Lucas W.; Phelps, Tommy J.

    2015-09-08

    The invention is directed to a method for producing metal oxide nanoparticles, the method comprising: (i) subjecting a combination of reaction components to conditions conducive to microbial-mediated formation of metal oxide nanoparticles, wherein said combination of reaction components comprise: metal-reducing microbes, a culture medium suitable for sustaining said metal-reducing microbes, an effective concentration of one or more surfactants, a reducible metal oxide component containing one or more reducible metal species, and one or more electron donors that provide donatable electrons to said metal-reducing microbes during consumption of the electron donor by said metal-reducing microbes; and (ii) isolating said metal oxide nanoparticles, which contain a reduced form of said reducible metal oxide component. The invention is also directed to metal oxide nanoparticle compositions produced by the inventive method.

  5. Phytoremediation using microbially mediated metal accumulation in Sorghum bicolor.

    PubMed

    Phieler, René; Merten, Dirk; Roth, Martin; Büchel, Georg; Kothe, Erika

    2015-12-01

    Reclaiming land that has been anthropogenically contaminated with multiple heavy metal elements, e.g., during mining operations, is a growing challenge worldwide. The use of phytoremediation has been discussed with varying success. Here, we show that a careful examination of options of microbial determination of plant performance is a key element in providing a multielement remediation option for such landscapes. We used both (a) mycorrhiza with Rhizophagus irregularis and (b) bacterial amendments with Streptomyces acidiscabies E13 and Streptomyces tendae F4 to mediate plant-promoting and metal-accumulating properties to Sorghum bicolor. In pot experiments, the effects on plant growth and metal uptake were scored, and in a field trial at a former uranium leaching heap site near Ronneburg, Germany, we could show the efficacy under field conditions. Different metals could be extracted at the same time, with varying microbial inoculation and soil amendment scenarios possible when a certain metal is the focus of interest. Especially, manganese was extracted at very high levels which might be useful even for phytomining approaches. PMID:25874434

  6. THE NEAR-EQUILIBRIUM OF MICROBIALLY MEDIATED REDOX COUPLES IN REDUCING GROUNDWATER ENVIRONMENTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Redox couples are commonly held to be in disequilibrium among each other in most natural waters. To evaluate this view for microbially mediated, reducing, groundwater environments, monitoring data were examined for several couples under conditions ranging from nitrate-detectable...

  7. Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)

    MedlinePlus

    Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus; MERS-CoV; Novel coronavirus; nCoV ... Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Middle East ... 2, 2015. www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/mers/faq.html . Accessed April ...

  8. MER Telemetry Processor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lee, Hyun H.

    2012-01-01

    MERTELEMPROC processes telemetered data in data product format and generates Experiment Data Records (EDRs) for many instruments (HAZCAM, NAVCAM, PANCAM, microscopic imager, Moessbauer spectrometer, APXS, RAT, and EDLCAM) on the Mars Exploration Rover (MER). If the data is compressed, then MERTELEMPROC decompresses the data with an appropriate decompression algorithm. There are two compression algorithms (ICER and LOCO) used in MER. This program fulfills a MER specific need to generate Level 1 products within a 60-second time requirement. EDRs generated by this program are used by merinverter, marscahv, marsrad, and marsjplstereo to generate higher-level products for the mission operations. MERTELEPROC was the first GDS program to process the data product. Metadata of the data product is in XML format. The software allows user-configurable input parameters, per-product processing (not streambased processing), and fail-over is allowed if the leading image header is corrupted. It is used within the MER automated pipeline. MERTELEMPROC is part of the OPGS (Operational Product Generation Subsystem) automated pipeline, which analyzes images returned by in situ spacecraft and creates level 1 products to assist in operations, science, and outreach.

  9. A biophysical index for predicting hydration-mediated microbial diversity in soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, G.; Or, D.

    2012-04-01

    Exploring the origins of soil microbial diversity represents an immense and uncharted scientific frontier. Progress in resolving mechanisms that promote and sustain the unparalleled soil microbial diversity found in soil requires development of process-based predictive tools that consider dynamic biophysical interactions at highly resolved spatial and temporal scales. We report a novel biophysical metric for hydration-mediated microbial coexistence in soils by integrating key biophysical variables, such as aquatic habitat size and connectivity, nutrient diffusion affecting microbial growth, and aqueous films controlling motility and dispersal, into a predictive index. Results show a surprisingly narrow range of hydration conditions (a few kPa) that mark a sharp transition from suppression (wet) to promotion (dry) of microbial diversity in unsaturated soils in agreement with limited observations and with simulation results based on individual-based models of competing populations. The framework enables systematic hypothesis testing for key factors that regulate microbial populations and affect soil bio-geochemical functions, and represents a step towards deciphering key mechanisms that support soil microbial diversity. New insights into the different roles of biophysical mechanisms in promoting soil microbial diversity enable predictions concerning microbial consortia function and bioremediation activities in soils, and may shape how we quantify microbial diversity within the context of land resources and biogeochemical cycling.

  10. MER ARA pyroshock test results

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chang, Kurng Y.

    2004-01-01

    This paper presents the shock test results achieved in the MER ARA/brush motor pyroshock qualification. The results of MER flight system pyrofiring tests in comparison with the ARA shock test requirements are discussed herein. Alternate test methods were developed in an effort to qualify the critical MER equipment for adequate performance in the actual flight pyroshock condition.

  11. Electrochemical stimulation of microbial reductive dechlorination of pentachlorophenol using solid-state redox mediator (humin) immobilization.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Dongdong; Zhang, Chunfang; Li, Zhiling; Suzuki, Daisuke; Komatsu, Daisuke D; Tsunogai, Urumu; Katayama, Arata

    2014-07-01

    Immobilized solid-phase humin on a graphite electrode set at -500 mV (vs. standard hydrogen electrode) significantly enhanced the microbial reductive dechlorination of pentachlorophenol as a stable solid-phase redox mediator in bioelectrochemical systems (BESs). Compared with the suspended system, the immobilized system dechlorinated PCP at a much higher efficiency, achieving 116 μmol Cl(-)g(-1) humin d(-1). Fluorescence microscopy showed a conspicuous growth of bacteria on the negatively poised immobilized humin. Electron balance analyses suggested that the electrons required for microbial dechlorination were supplied primarily from the humin-immobilized electrode. Microbial community analyses based on 16S rRNA genes showed that Dehalobacter and Desulfovibrio grew on the immobilized humin as potential dechlorinators. These findings extend the potential of BESs using immobilized solid-phase humin as the redox mediator for in situ bioremediation, given the wide distribution of humin and its efficiency and stability as a mediator. PMID:24859215

  12. Analyzing MER Uplink Reports

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Savin, Stephen C.

    2005-01-01

    The MER project includes two rovers working simultaneously on opposite sides of Mars each receiving commands only once a day. Creating this uplink is critical, since a failed uplink means a lost day and a waste of money. Examining the process of creating this uplink, I tracked the use of the system developed for requesting observations as well as the development, from stage to stage, in forming an activity plan. I found the system for requesting observations was commonly misused, if used at all. There are half a dozen reports to document the creation of the uplink plan and often there are discrepancies among them. Despite this, the uplink process worked very well and MER has been one of the most successful missions for NASA in recent memory. Still it is clear there is room for improvement.

  13. Microbially mediated cobalt oxidation in seawater revealed by radiotracer experiments

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, B.G.; Fisher, N.S. )

    1993-12-01

    The influence of microbial activity on Co and Mn oxidation in decomposing diatom cultures was determined with radiotracer techniques. Adding a consortium of microorganisms collected from coastal seawater (0.2-3-[mu]m size fraction) to the cultures increased particulate Co formation rates at 18[degrees]C by an order of magnitude (to 3.8% d[sup [minus]1]) and particulate Mn formation rates 3-fold (to 7.9% d[sup [minus

  14. The mechanism of neutral red-mediated microbial electrosynthesis in Escherichia coli: menaquinone reduction.

    PubMed

    Harrington, Timothy D; Tran, Vi N; Mohamed, Abdelrhman; Renslow, Ryan; Biria, Saeid; Orfe, Lisa; Call, Douglas R; Beyenal, Haluk

    2015-09-01

    The aim of this work was to elucidate the mechanism of mediated microbial electrosynthesis via neutral red from an electrode to fermenting Escherichia coli cultures in a bioelectrochemical system. Chemical reduction of NAD(+) by reduced neutral red did not occur as predicted. Instead, neutral red was shown to reduce the menaquinone pool in the inner bacterial membrane. The reduced menaquinone pool altered fermentative metabolite production via the arcB redox-sensing cascade in the absence of terminal electron acceptors. When the acceptors DMSO, fumarate, or nitrate were provided, as many as 19% of the electrons trapped in the reduced acceptors were derived from the electrode. These results demonstrate the mechanism of neutral red-mediated microbial electrosynthesis during fermentation as well as how neutral red enables microbial electrosynthesis of reduced terminal electron acceptors. PMID:26094195

  15. Microbially-Mediated Precipitation of Calcium Carbonate Nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Kang, Ser Ku; Roh, Yul

    2016-02-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the biomineralization of carbonate minerals using microorganisms (Wu Do-1) enriched from rhodoliths. A 16S rRNA sequence analysis showed that Wu Do-1 mainly contained Proteus mirabilis. The pH decreased from 6.5 to 5.3 over the first 4 days of incubation due to microbial oxidation of organic acids, after which it increased to 7.8 over the remaining incubation period. XRD analysis showed that the precipitates were Mg-rich cal- cite (MgxCa(1-x)CO3), whereas no precipitates were formed without the addition of Wu Do-1 in D-1 medium. SEM-EDS analyses showed that the Mg-rich calcite had a rhombohedron shape and consisted of Ca, Si and Mg with an extracelluar polymeric substance (EPS). In addition, TEM-EDS analyses revealed they were hexagon in shape, 500-700 nm in size, and composed of Ca, Mg, C, and O. These results indicated that Wu Do-1 induced precipitation of Mg-rich calcite on the cell walls and EPS via the accumulation of Ca and/or Mg ions. Therefore, microbial precipitation of carbonate nanoparticles may play an important role in metal and carbon biogeochemistry, as well as in carbon sequestration in natural environments. PMID:27433711

  16. Long- and short-term temperature responses of microbially-mediated boreal soil organic matter transformations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Min, K.; Buckeridge, K. M.; Edwards, K. A.; Ziegler, S. E.; Billings, S. A.

    2015-12-01

    Microorganisms use exoenzymes to decay soil organic matter into assimilable substrates, some of which are transformed into CO2. Microbial CO2 efflux contributes up to 60% of soil respiration, a feature that can change with temperature due to altered exoenzyme activities (short-term) and microbial communities producing different exoenzymes (longer-term). Often, however, microbial temperature responses are masked by factors that also change with temperature in soil, making accurate projections of microbial CO2 efflux with warming challenging. Using soils along a natural climate gradient similar in most respects except for temperature regime (Newfoundland Labrador Boreal Ecosystem Latitudinal Transect), we investigated short-vs. long-term temperature responses of microbially-mediated organic matter transformations. While incubating soils at 5, 15, and 25°C for 84 days, we measured exoenzyme activities, CO2 efflux rates and biomass, and extracted DNA at multiple times. We hypothesized that short-term, temperature-induced increases in exoenzyme activities and CO2 losses would be smaller in soils from warmer regions, because microbes presumably adapted to warmer regions should use assimilable substrates more efficiently and thus produce exoenzymes at a lower rate. While incubation temperature generally induced greater exoenzyme activities (p<0.001), exoenzymes' temperature responses depended on enzymes and regions (p<0.001). Rate of CO2 efflux was affected by incubation temperature (P<0.001), but not by region. Microbial biomass and DNA sequencing will reveal how microbial community abundance and composition change with short-vs. longer-term temperature change. Though short-term microbial responses to temperature suggest higher CO2 efflux and thus lower efficiency of resource use with warming, longer-term adaptations of microbial communities to warmer climates remain unknown; this work helps fill that knowledge gap.

  17. Biotic and Abiotic Properties Mediating Plant Diversity Effects on Soil Microbial Communities in an Experimental Grassland

    PubMed Central

    Lange, Markus; Habekost, Maike; Eisenhauer, Nico; Roscher, Christiane; Bessler, Holger; Engels, Christof; Oelmann, Yvonne; Scheu, Stefan; Wilcke, Wolfgang; Schulze, Ernst-Detlef; Gleixner, Gerd

    2014-01-01

    Plant diversity drives changes in the soil microbial community which may result in alterations in ecosystem functions. However, the governing factors between the composition of soil microbial communities and plant diversity are not well understood. We investigated the impact of plant diversity (plant species richness and functional group richness) and plant functional group identity on soil microbial biomass and soil microbial community structure in experimental grassland ecosystems. Total microbial biomass and community structure were determined by phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analysis. The diversity gradient covered 1, 2, 4, 8, 16 and 60 plant species and 1, 2, 3 and 4 plant functional groups (grasses, legumes, small herbs and tall herbs). In May 2007, soil samples were taken from experimental plots and from nearby fields and meadows. Beside soil texture, plant species richness was the main driver of soil microbial biomass. Structural equation modeling revealed that the positive plant diversity effect was mainly mediated by higher leaf area index resulting in higher soil moisture in the top soil layer. The fungal-to-bacterial biomass ratio was positively affected by plant functional group richness and negatively by the presence of legumes. Bacteria were more closely related to abiotic differences caused by plant diversity, while fungi were more affected by plant-derived organic matter inputs. We found diverse plant communities promoted faster transition of soil microbial communities typical for arable land towards grassland communities. Although some mechanisms underlying the plant diversity effect on soil microorganisms could be identified, future studies have to determine plant traits shaping soil microbial community structure. We suspect differences in root traits among different plant communities, such as root turnover rates and chemical composition of root exudates, to structure soil microbial communities. PMID:24816860

  18. Biotic and abiotic properties mediating plant diversity effects on soil microbial communities in an experimental grassland.

    PubMed

    Lange, Markus; Habekost, Maike; Eisenhauer, Nico; Roscher, Christiane; Bessler, Holger; Engels, Christof; Oelmann, Yvonne; Scheu, Stefan; Wilcke, Wolfgang; Schulze, Ernst-Detlef; Gleixner, Gerd

    2014-01-01

    Plant diversity drives changes in the soil microbial community which may result in alterations in ecosystem functions. However, the governing factors between the composition of soil microbial communities and plant diversity are not well understood. We investigated the impact of plant diversity (plant species richness and functional group richness) and plant functional group identity on soil microbial biomass and soil microbial community structure in experimental grassland ecosystems. Total microbial biomass and community structure were determined by phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analysis. The diversity gradient covered 1, 2, 4, 8, 16 and 60 plant species and 1, 2, 3 and 4 plant functional groups (grasses, legumes, small herbs and tall herbs). In May 2007, soil samples were taken from experimental plots and from nearby fields and meadows. Beside soil texture, plant species richness was the main driver of soil microbial biomass. Structural equation modeling revealed that the positive plant diversity effect was mainly mediated by higher leaf area index resulting in higher soil moisture in the top soil layer. The fungal-to-bacterial biomass ratio was positively affected by plant functional group richness and negatively by the presence of legumes. Bacteria were more closely related to abiotic differences caused by plant diversity, while fungi were more affected by plant-derived organic matter inputs. We found diverse plant communities promoted faster transition of soil microbial communities typical for arable land towards grassland communities. Although some mechanisms underlying the plant diversity effect on soil microorganisms could be identified, future studies have to determine plant traits shaping soil microbial community structure. We suspect differences in root traits among different plant communities, such as root turnover rates and chemical composition of root exudates, to structure soil microbial communities. PMID:24816860

  19. Humic substances as a mediator for microbially catalyzed metal reduction

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lovley, D.R.; Fraga, J.L.; Blunt-Harris, E. L.; Hayes, L.A.; Phillips, E.J.P.; Coates, J.D.

    1998-01-01

    The potential for humic substances to serve as a terminal electron acceptor in microbial respiration and to function as an electron shuttle between Fe(III)-reducing microorganisms and insoluble Fe(III) oxides was investigated. The Fe(III)-reducing microorganism Geobacter metallireducens conserved energy to support growth from electron transport to humics as evidenced by continued oxidation of acetate to carbon dioxide after as many as nine transfers in a medium with acetate as the electron donor and soil humic acids as the electron acceptor. Growth of G. metallireducens with poorly crystalline Fe(III) oxide as the electron acceptor was greatly stimulated by the addition of as little as 100 ??M of the humics analog, anthraquinone-2,6-disulfonate. Other quinones investigated, including lawsone, menadione, and anthraquinone-2-sulfonate, also stimulated Fe(III) oxide reduction. A wide phylogenetic diversity of microorganisms capable of Fe(III) reduction were also able to transfer electrons to humics. Microorganisms which can not reduce Fe(III) could not reduce humics. Humics stimulated the reduction of structural Fe(III) in clay and the crystalline Fe(III) forms, goethite and hematite. These results demonstrate that electron shuttling between Fe(III)-reducing microorganisms and Fe(III) via humics not only accelerates the microbial reduction of poorly crystalline Fe(III) oxide, but also can facilitate the reduction of Fe(III) forms that are not typically reduced by microorganisms in the absence of humics. Addition of humic substances to enhance electron shuttling between Fe(III)-reducing microorganisms and Fe(III) oxides may be a useful strategy to stimulate the remediation of soils and sediments contaminated with organic or metal pollutants.

  20. Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS)

    PubMed Central

    Cunha, Cheston B; Opal, Steven M

    2014-01-01

    Coronaviruses have traditionally been associated with mild upper respiratory tract infections throughout the world. In the fall of 2002, a new coronavirus emerged in in Asia causing severe viral pneumonia, i.e., severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). Nearly a decade following the SARS epidemic, a new coronavirus causing severe viral pneumonia has emerged, i.e., middle east respiratory syndrome (MERS). Since the initial case of MERS-CoV occurred in June of 2012 in Saudi Arabia there have been 688 confirmed cases and 282 deaths in 20 countries.   Although both SARS and MERS are caused by coronaviruses, SARS was characterized by efficient human transmission and relatively low mortality rate. In contrast, MERS is relatively inefficiently transmitted to humans but has a high mortality rate. Given the potential overlap in presentation and manifestation, it is important to understand the clinical and epidemiologic differences between MERS, SARS and influenza. PMID:25089913

  1. Microbial mediators of carbon fate in thawing permafrost: connecting microbial activity to geochemistry across an in situ thaw gradient

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, E.; Mondav, R.; Woodcroft, B. J.; Hodgkins, S. B.; McCalley, C. K.; Wehr, R.; Logan, T.; VerBerkmoes, N. C.; Crill, P. M.; Chanton, J.; Saleska, S. R.; Rich, V. I.; Tyson, G. W.

    2012-12-01

    Permafrost holds approximately one third of global soil carbon in a relatively unavailable form. Climate change is predicted to virtually eliminate permafrost by the end of the century. The fate of the stored carbon will be driven by local geohydrology and mediated by microbial carbon transformations. Predicting thaw-induced feedbacks to climate change requires improving our understanding of concomitant changes in microbial activity, particularly in CO2 fixation, organic matter degradation, and CH4 cycling. Our team is using diverse geochemical and molecular measurements to track changes in carbon cycling and microbial communities across a natural permafrost thaw gradient. The gradient habitats are highly instrumented for ecological, hydrologic, and biogeochemical monitoring, and the thaw progression has been documented over decades. Permafrost thaw has caused slumping ground level and progressive changes in hydrology and plant composition, culminating in sedge-dominated fen wetland. Although this endpoint habitat supports higher plant productivity, there is a net increase in radiative forcing due to high methane emissions. This natural laboratory permits the examination of in situ changes in microbial composition and activity across thaw-induced habitat change. Specifically, taxonomic and metabolic profiling (16S rRNA gene amplicon, metagenomic and metaproteomic sequencing) is linking microbial metabolisms to synoptic geochemistry. Community data have revealed the presence of a novel highly active methanogen from the euryarchaeal lineage Rice Cluster-II. The abundance and distribution of RC-II across the thaw gradient habitats correlate to methane emission. The 2.1Mb RC-II genome (in 117 contigs, median 47kb, longest 135kb) was assembled from metagenomic data. The genome suggests the ability to perform hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis. To link resident microbes to active carbon cycling, we determined in situ community global protein expression profiles (i

  2. Influence of coral and algal exudates on microbially mediated reef metabolism

    PubMed Central

    Nelson, Craig E.; Rohwer, Forest; Wegley-Kelly, Linda; Quistad, Steven D.; Carlson, Craig A.; Leichter, James J.; Hatay, Mark; Smith, Jennifer E.

    2013-01-01

    producers were always estimated to be net autotrophic. However, estimates of microbial consumption of DOC at the reef scale surpassed the DOC exudation rates suggesting net consumption of DOC at the reef-scale. In situ mesocosm experiments using custom-made benthic chambers placed over different types of benthic communities exhibited identical trends to those found in incubation experiments. Here we provide the first comprehensive dataset examining direct primary producer-induced, and indirect microbially mediated alterations of elemental cycling in both benthic and planktonic reef environments over diurnal cycles. Our results highlight the variability of the influence of different benthic primary producers on microbial metabolism in reef ecosystems and the potential implications for energy transfer to higher trophic levels during shifts from coral to algal dominance on reefs. PMID:23882445

  3. Influence of coral and algal exudates on microbially mediated reef metabolism.

    PubMed

    Haas, Andreas F; Nelson, Craig E; Rohwer, Forest; Wegley-Kelly, Linda; Quistad, Steven D; Carlson, Craig A; Leichter, James J; Hatay, Mark; Smith, Jennifer E

    2013-01-01

    producers were always estimated to be net autotrophic. However, estimates of microbial consumption of DOC at the reef scale surpassed the DOC exudation rates suggesting net consumption of DOC at the reef-scale. In situ mesocosm experiments using custom-made benthic chambers placed over different types of benthic communities exhibited identical trends to those found in incubation experiments. Here we provide the first comprehensive dataset examining direct primary producer-induced, and indirect microbially mediated alterations of elemental cycling in both benthic and planktonic reef environments over diurnal cycles. Our results highlight the variability of the influence of different benthic primary producers on microbial metabolism in reef ecosystems and the potential implications for energy transfer to higher trophic levels during shifts from coral to algal dominance on reefs. PMID:23882445

  4. Plant roots alter microbial potential for mediation of soil organic carbon decomposition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Firestone, M.; Shi, S.; Herman, D.; He, Z.; Zhou, J.

    2014-12-01

    Plant root regulation of soil organic carbon (SOC) decomposition is a key controller of terrestrial C-cycling. Although many studies have tested possible mechanisms underlying plant "priming" of decomposition, few have investigated the microbial mediators of decomposition, which can be greatly influenced by plant activities. Here we examined effects of Avena fatua roots on decomposition of 13C-labeled root litter in a California grassland soil over two simulated growing-seasons. The presence of plant roots consistently suppressed rates of litter decomposition. Reduction of inorganic nitrogen (N) concentration in soil reduced but did not completely relieve this suppressive effect. The presence of plants significantly altered the abundance, composition and functional potential of microbial communities. Significantly higher signal intensities of genes capable of degrading low molecular weight organic compounds (e.g., glucose, formate and malate) were observed in microbial communities from planted soils, while microorganisms in unplanted soils had higher relative abundances of genes involved in degradation of some macromolecules (e.g., hemicellulose and lignin). Additionally, compared to unplanted soils, microbial communities from planted soils had higher signal intensities of proV and proW, suggesting microbial osmotic stress in planted soils. Possible mechanisms for the observed inhibition of decomposition are 1) microbes preferentially using simple substrates from root exudates and 2) soil drying by plant evapotranspiration impairing microbial activity. We propose a simple data-based model suggesting that the impacts of roots, the soil environment, and microbial community composition on decomposition processes result from impacts of these factors on the soil microbial functional gene potential.

  5. Molecular mechanisms of CRISPR-mediated microbial immunity.

    PubMed

    Gasiunas, Giedrius; Sinkunas, Tomas; Siksnys, Virginijus

    2014-02-01

    Bacteriophages (phages) infect bacteria in order to replicate and burst out of the host, killing the cell, when reproduction is completed. Thus, from a bacterial perspective, phages pose a persistent lethal threat to bacterial populations. Not surprisingly, bacteria evolved multiple defense barriers to interfere with nearly every step of phage life cycles. Phages respond to this selection pressure by counter-evolving their genomes to evade bacterial resistance. The antagonistic interaction between bacteria and rapidly diversifying viruses promotes the evolution and dissemination of bacteriophage-resistance mechanisms in bacteria. Recently, an adaptive microbial immune system, named clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) and which provides acquired immunity against viruses and plasmids, has been identified. Unlike the restriction–modification anti-phage barrier that subjects to cleavage any foreign DNA lacking a protective methyl-tag in the target site, the CRISPR–Cas systems are invader-specific, adaptive, and heritable. In this review, we focus on the molecular mechanisms of interference/immunity provided by different CRISPR–Cas systems. PMID:23959171

  6. Role of Soil Microstructure in Microbially-mediated Drying Resistance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cruz, B. C.; Shor, L. M.; Gage, D. J.

    2015-12-01

    The retention of soil moisture between rainfall or irrigation events is imperative to the productivity of terrestrial ecosystems. Amplified weather conditions are expected to result in widespread reduction in soil moisture. Extracellular polysaccharides (EPS) produced by soil bacteria have the ability to influence soil moisture by (i) retaining water directly within the hydrogel matrix, and (ii) promoting an aggregated soil structure. We have developed microfluidic devices that emulate realistic soil microstructures and enable direct observation of EPS production and drying resistance. The objective of this study was to compare moisture retention in emulated soil micromodels containing different soil microstructures. "Aggregated" devices contain a greater number of small (<30 μm) and large (>100 μm) pores, while "non-aggregated" devices contained more intermediate-sized (30-100 μm) pores. Particle-size distributions, similar to a sandy loam, were identical in both cases. Dilute suspensions of either of two strains of Sinorhizobium meliloti were introduced into replicate micromodels: one strain produced EPS ("EPS+") and the other did not produce EPS ("EPS-"). Loaded micromodels were equilibrated at saturated conditions, then dried at 83% RH for several days. Direct observation showed micro-scale patterns of air infiltration. The rate and extent of moisture loss was determined as a function of bacterial strain and microstructure aggregation state. Results showed devices loaded with EPS+ bacteria retained moisture longer than devices loaded with EPS- bacteria. Moisture retention by EPS+ bacteria was enhanced in aggregated versus non-aggregated microstructures. This work illustrates how moisture retention in soil is the result of microbial processes acting within pore-scale soil microstructures. Validated microfluidics-based approaches may help quantitatively link pore-scale phenomena to ecosystem function.

  7. Calcium isotopic fractionation in microbially mediated gypsum precipitates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harouaka, Khadouja; Mansor, Muammar; Macalady, Jennifer L.; Fantle, Matthew S.

    2016-07-01

    Gypsum (CaSO4·2H2O) precipitation experiments were carried out at low pH in the presence of the sulfur oxidizing bacterium Acidithiobacillus thiooxidans. The observed Ca isotopic fractionation (expressed as Δ44/40Cas-f = δ44/40Casolid-δ44/40Cafluid) at the end of each experimental time period (∼50 to 60 days) was -1.41‰ to -1.09‰ in the biotic experiments, -1.09‰ in the killed control, and -1.01‰ to -0.88‰ in the abiotic controls. As there were no strong differences in the solution chemistry and the rate at which gypsum precipitated in the biotic and abiotic controls, we deduce a biological Ca isotope effect on the order of -0.3‰. The isotope effect correlates with a difference in crystal aspect ratios between the biotic experiments (8.05 ± 3.99) and abiotic controls (31.9 ± 8.40). We hypothesize that soluble and/or insoluble organic compounds selectively inhibit crystal growth at specific crystal faces, and that the growth inhibition affects the fractionation factor associated with gypsum precipitation. The experimental results help explain Ca isotopic variability in gypsum sampled from a sulfidic cave system, in which gypsum crystals exhibiting a diversity of morphologies (microcrystalline to cm-scale needles) have a broad range of δ44/40Ca values (∼1.2-0.4‰) relative to the limestone wall (δ44/40Ca = 1.3‰). In light of the laboratory experiments, the variation in Ca isotope values in the caves can be interpreted as a consequence of gypsum precipitation in the presence of microbial organic matter and subsequent isotopic re-equilibration with the Ca source.

  8. Plant stimulation of soil microbial community succession: how sequential expression mediates soil carbon stabilization and turnover

    SciTech Connect

    Firestone, Mary

    2015-03-31

    It is now understood that most plant C is utilized or transformed by soil microorganisms en route to stabilization. Hence the composition of microbial communities that mediate decomposition and transformation of root C is critical, as are the metabolic capabilities of these communities. The change in composition and function of the C-transforming microbial communities over time in effect defines the biological component of soil C stabilization. Our research was designed to test 2 general hypotheses; the first two hypotheses are discussed first; H1: Root-exudate interactions with soil microbial populations results in the expression of enzymatic capacities for macromolecular, complex carbon decomposition; and H2: Microbial communities surrounding roots undergo taxonomic succession linked to functional gene activities as roots grow, mature, and decompose in soil. Over the term of the project we made significant progress in 1) quantifying the temporal pattern of root interactions with the soil decomposing community and 2) characterizing the role of root exudates in mediating these interactions.

  9. Microbial metabolism mediates interactions between dissolved organic matter and clay minerals in streamwater.

    PubMed

    Hunter, W R; Battin, T J

    2016-01-01

    Sorption of organic molecules to mineral surfaces is an important control upon the aquatic carbon (C) cycle. Organo-mineral interactions are known to regulate the transport and burial of C within inland waters, yet the mechanisms that underlie these processes are poorly constrained. Streamwater contains a complex and dynamic mix of dissolved organic compounds that coexists with a range of organic and inorganic particles and microorganisms. To test how microbial metabolism and organo-mineral complexation alter amino acid and organic carbon fluxes we experimented with (13)C-labelled amino acids and two common clay minerals (kaolinite and montmorillonite). The addition of (13)C-labelled amino acids stimulated increased microbial activity. Amino acids were preferentially mineralized by the microbial community, concomitant with the leaching of other (non-labelled) dissolved organic molecules that were removed from solution by clay-mediated processes. We propose that microbial processes mediate the formation of organo-mineral particles in streamwater, with potential implications for the biochemical composition of organic matter transported through and buried within fluvial environments. PMID:27481013

  10. Microbial metabolism mediates interactions between dissolved organic matter and clay minerals in streamwater

    PubMed Central

    Hunter, W. R.; Battin, T. J.

    2016-01-01

    Sorption of organic molecules to mineral surfaces is an important control upon the aquatic carbon (C) cycle. Organo-mineral interactions are known to regulate the transport and burial of C within inland waters, yet the mechanisms that underlie these processes are poorly constrained. Streamwater contains a complex and dynamic mix of dissolved organic compounds that coexists with a range of organic and inorganic particles and microorganisms. To test how microbial metabolism and organo-mineral complexation alter amino acid and organic carbon fluxes we experimented with 13C-labelled amino acids and two common clay minerals (kaolinite and montmorillonite). The addition of 13C-labelled amino acids stimulated increased microbial activity. Amino acids were preferentially mineralized by the microbial community, concomitant with the leaching of other (non-labelled) dissolved organic molecules that were removed from solution by clay-mediated processes. We propose that microbial processes mediate the formation of organo-mineral particles in streamwater, with potential implications for the biochemical composition of organic matter transported through and buried within fluvial environments. PMID:27481013

  11. Microbial metabolism mediates interactions between dissolved organic matter and clay minerals in streamwater

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hunter, W. R.; Battin, T. J.

    2016-08-01

    Sorption of organic molecules to mineral surfaces is an important control upon the aquatic carbon (C) cycle. Organo-mineral interactions are known to regulate the transport and burial of C within inland waters, yet the mechanisms that underlie these processes are poorly constrained. Streamwater contains a complex and dynamic mix of dissolved organic compounds that coexists with a range of organic and inorganic particles and microorganisms. To test how microbial metabolism and organo-mineral complexation alter amino acid and organic carbon fluxes we experimented with 13C-labelled amino acids and two common clay minerals (kaolinite and montmorillonite). The addition of 13C-labelled amino acids stimulated increased microbial activity. Amino acids were preferentially mineralized by the microbial community, concomitant with the leaching of other (non-labelled) dissolved organic molecules that were removed from solution by clay-mediated processes. We propose that microbial processes mediate the formation of organo-mineral particles in streamwater, with potential implications for the biochemical composition of organic matter transported through and buried within fluvial environments.

  12. Preventing cleavage of Mer promotes efferocytosis and suppresses acute lung injury in bleomycin treated mice

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, Ye-Ji; Lee, Seung-Hae; Youn, Young-So; Choi, Ji-Yeon; Song, Keung-Sub; Cho, Min-Sun; Kang, Jihee Lee

    2012-08-15

    Mer receptor tyrosine kinase (Mer) regulates macrophage activation and promotes apoptotic cell clearance. Mer activation is regulated through proteolytic cleavage of the extracellular domain. To determine if membrane-bound Mer is cleaved during bleomycin-induced lung injury, and, if so, how preventing the cleavage of Mer enhances apoptotic cell uptake and down-regulates pulmonary immune responses. During bleomycin-induced acute lung injury in mice, membrane-bound Mer expression decreased, but production of soluble Mer and activity as well as expression of disintegrin and metalloproteinase 17 (ADAM17) were enhanced . Treatment with the ADAM inhibitor TAPI-0 restored Mer expression and diminished soluble Mer production. Furthermore, TAPI-0 increased Mer activation in alveolar macrophages and lung tissue resulting in enhanced apoptotic cell clearance in vivo and ex vivo by alveolar macrophages. Suppression of bleomycin-induced pro-inflammatory mediators, but enhancement of hepatocyte growth factor induction were seen after TAPI-0 treatment. Additional bleomycin-induced inflammatory responses reduced by TAPI-0 treatment included inflammatory cell recruitment into the lungs, levels of total protein and lactate dehydrogenase activity in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid, as well as caspase-3 and caspase-9 activity and alveolar epithelial cell apoptosis in lung tissue. Importantly, the effects of TAPI-0 on bleomycin-induced inflammation and apoptosis were reversed by coadministration of specific Mer-neutralizing antibodies. These findings suggest that restored membrane-bound Mer expression by TAPI-0 treatment may help resolve lung inflammation and apoptosis after bleomycin treatment. -- Highlights: ►Mer expression is restored by TAPI-0 treatment in bleomycin-stimulated lung. ►Mer signaling is enhanced by TAPI-0 treatment in bleomycin-stimulated lung. ►TAPI-0 enhances efferocytosis and promotes resolution of lung injury.

  13. Microbially mediated mineral carbonation: roles of phototrophy and heterotrophy.

    PubMed

    Power, Ian M; Wilson, Siobhan A; Small, Darcy P; Dipple, Gregory M; Wan, Wankei; Southam, Gordon

    2011-10-15

    Ultramafic mine tailings from the Diavik Diamond Mine, Canada and the Mount Keith Nickel Mine, Western Australia are valuable feedstocks for sequestering CO₂ via mineral carbonation. In microcosm experiments, tailings were leached using various dilute acids to produce subsaline solutions at circumneutral pH that were inoculated with a phototrophic consortium that is able to induce carbonate precipitation. Geochemical modeling of the experimental solutions indicates that up to 2.5% and 16.7% of the annual emissions for Diavik and Mount Keith mines, respectively, could be sequestered as carbonate minerals and phototrophic biomass. CO₂ sequestration rates are mainly limited by cation availability and the uptake of CO₂. Abundant carbonate mineral precipitation occurred when heterotrophic oxidation of acetate acted as an alternative pathway for CO₂ delivery. These experiments highlight the importance of heterotrophy in producing sufficient DIC concentrations while phototrophy causes alkalinization of waters and produces biomass (fatty acids = 7.6 wt.%), a potential feedstock for biofuel production. Tailings storage facilities could be redesigned to promote CO₂ sequestration by directing leachate waters from tailings piles into specially designed ponds where carbonate precipitation would be mediated by both chemical and biological processes, thereby storing carbon in stable carbonate minerals and potentially valuable biomass. PMID:21879741

  14. Microbially mediated carbon mineralization: Geoengineering a carbon-neutral mine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Power, I. M.; McCutcheon, J.; Harrison, A. L.; Wilson, S. A.; Dipple, G. M.; Southam, G.

    2013-12-01

    Ultramafic and mafic mine tailings are a potentially valuable feedstock for carbon mineralization, affording the mining industry an opportunity to completely offset their carbon emissions. Passive carbon mineralization has previously been documented at the abandoned Clinton Creek asbestos mine, and the active Diavik diamond mine and Mount Keith nickel mine, yet the majority of tailings remain unreacted. Examples of microbe-carbonate interactions at each mine suggest that biological pathways could be harnessed to promote carbon mineralization. In suitable environmental conditions, microbes can mediate geochemical processes to accelerate mineral dissolution, increase the supply of carbon dioxide (CO2), and induce carbonate precipitation, all of which may accelerate carbon mineralization. Tailings mineralogy and the availability of a CO2 point source are key considerations in designing tailings storage facilities (TSF) for optimizing carbon mineralization. We evaluate the efficacy of acceleration strategies including bioleaching, biologically induced carbonate precipitation, and heterotrophic oxidation of waste organics, as well as abiotic strategies including enhancing passive carbonation through modifying tailings management practices and use of CO2 point sources (Fig. 1). With the aim of developing carbon-neutral mines, implementation of carbon mineralization strategies into TSF design will be driven by economic incentives and public pressure for environmental sustainability in the mining industry. Figure 1. Schematic illustrating geoengineered scenarios for carbon mineralization of ultramafic mine tailings. Scenarios A and B are based on non-point and point sources of CO2, respectively.

  15. Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)

    MedlinePlus

    ... United Kingdom (UK), and United States of America (USA). CDC Commentary: Be on the Lookout for MERS- ... OIG 1600 Clifton Road Atlanta , GA 30329-4027 USA 800-CDC-INFO (800-232-4636) , TTY: 888- ...

  16. merA gene expression in aquatic environments measured by mRNA production and Hg(II) volatilization.

    PubMed Central

    Nazaret, S; Jeffrey, W H; Saouter, E; Von Haven, R; Barkay, T

    1994-01-01

    The relationship of merA gene expression (specifying the enzyme mercuric reductase) to mercury volatilization in aquatic microbial communities was investigated with samples collected at a mercury-contaminated freshwater pond, Reality Lake, in Oak Ridge, Tenn. Levels of merA mRNA transcripts and the rate of inorganic mercury [Hg(II)] volatilization were related to the concentration of mercury in the water and to heterotrophic activity in field samples and laboratory incubations of pond water in which microbial heterotrophic activity and Hg(II) concentration were manipulated. Levels of merA-specific mRNA and Hg(II) volatilization were influenced more by microbial metabolic activity than by the concentration of mercury. merA-specific transcripts were detected in some samples which did not reduce Hg(II), suggesting that rates of mercury volatilization in environmental samples may not always be proportional to merA expression. PMID:7527625

  17. Effect of electron mediators on current generation and fermentation in a microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Sund, Christian J; McMasters, Sun; Crittenden, Scott R; Harrell, Lee E; Sumner, James J

    2007-09-01

    Effects of select electron mediators [9,10-anthraquinone-2,6-disulfonic acid disodium salt (AQDS), safranine O, resazurin, methylene blue, and humic acids] on metabolic end-products and current production from cellulose digestion by Clostridium cellulolyticum in microbial fuel cells (MFCs) were studied using capillary electrophoresis and traditional electrochemical techniques. Addition of the mediator resazurin greatly enhanced current production but did not appear to alter the examined fermentation end-products compared to MFCs with no mediator. Assays for lactate, acetate, and ethanol indicate that the presence of safranine O, methylene blue, and humic acids alters metabolite production in the MFC: safranine O decreased the examined metabolites, methylene blue increased lactate formation, and humic acids increased the examined metabolites. Mediator standard redox potentials (E (0)) reported in the literature do not coincide with redox potentials in MFCs due presumably to the electrolytic complexity of media that supports bacterial survival and growth. Current production in MFCs: (1) can be effected by the mediator redox potential while in the media, which may be significantly shifted from E (0), and (2) depended on the ability of the mediator to access the bacterial electron source, which may be cytoplasmic. In addition, some electron mediators had significant effects on metabolic end-products and therefore the metabolism of the organism itself. PMID:17562040

  18. Biofuel Cells Select for Microbial Consortia That Self-Mediate Electron Transfer

    PubMed Central

    Rabaey, Korneel; Boon, Nico; Siciliano, Steven D.; Verhaege, Marc; Verstraete, Willy

    2004-01-01

    Microbial fuel cells hold great promise as a sustainable biotechnological solution to future energy needs. Current efforts to improve the efficiency of such fuel cells are limited by the lack of knowledge about the microbial ecology of these systems. The purposes of this study were (i) to elucidate whether a bacterial community, either suspended or attached to an electrode, can evolve in a microbial fuel cell to bring about higher power output, and (ii) to identify species responsible for the electricity generation. Enrichment by repeated transfer of a bacterial consortium harvested from the anode compartment of a biofuel cell in which glucose was used increased the output from an initial level of 0.6 W m−2 of electrode surface to a maximal level of 4.31 W m−2 (664 mV, 30.9 mA) when plain graphite electrodes were used. This result was obtained with an average loading rate of 1 g of glucose liter−1 day−1 and corresponded to 81% efficiency for electron transfer from glucose to electricity. Cyclic voltammetry indicated that the enhanced microbial consortium had either membrane-bound or excreted redox components that were not initially detected in the community. Dominant species of the enhanced culture were identified by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and culturing. The community consisted mainly of facultative anaerobic bacteria, such as Alcaligenes faecalis and Enterococcus gallinarum, which are capable of hydrogen production. Pseudomonas aeruginosa and other Pseudomonas species were also isolated. For several isolates, electrochemical activity was mainly due to excreted redox mediators, and one of these mediators, pyocyanin produced by P. aeruginosa, could be characterized. Overall, the enrichment procedure, irrespective of whether only attached or suspended bacteria were examined, selected for organisms capable of mediating the electron transfer either by direct bacterial transfer or by excretion of redox components. PMID:15345423

  19. Microbial mediation of biogeochemical cycles revealed by simulation of global changes with soil transplant and cropping

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Mengxin; Xue, Kai; Wang, Feng; Liu, Shanshan; Bai, Shijie; Sun, Bo; Zhou, Jizhong; Yang, Yunfeng

    2014-01-01

    Despite microbes' key roles in driving biogeochemical cycles, the mechanism of microbe-mediated feedbacks to global changes remains elusive. Recently, soil transplant has been successfully established as a proxy to simulate climate changes, as the current trend of global warming coherently causes range shifts toward higher latitudes. Four years after southward soil transplant over large transects in China, we found that microbial functional diversity was increased, in addition to concurrent changes in microbial biomass, soil nutrient content and functional processes involved in the nitrogen cycle. However, soil transplant effects could be overridden by maize cropping, which was attributed to a negative interaction. Strikingly, abundances of nitrogen and carbon cycle genes were increased by these field experiments simulating global change, coinciding with higher soil nitrification potential and carbon dioxide (CO2) efflux. Further investigation revealed strong correlations between carbon cycle genes and CO2 efflux in bare soil but not cropped soil, and between nitrogen cycle genes and nitrification. These findings suggest that changes of soil carbon and nitrogen cycles by soil transplant and cropping were predictable by measuring microbial functional potentials, contributing to a better mechanistic understanding of these soil functional processes and suggesting a potential to incorporate microbial communities in greenhouse gas emission modeling. PMID:24694714

  20. Effect of microbial mediated iron plaque reduction on arsenic mobility in paddy soil.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xinjun; Chen, Xueping; Yang, Jing; Wang, Zhaosu; Sun, Guoxin

    2009-01-01

    The potential of microbial mediated iron plaque reduction, and associated arsenic (As) mobility were examined by iron reducing bacteria enriched from As contaminated paddy soil. To our knowledge, this is the first time to report the impact of microbial iron plaque reduction on As mobility. Iron reduction occurred during the inoculation of iron reducing enrichment culture in the treatments with iron plaque and ferrihydrite as the electron acceptors, respectively. The Fe(II) concentration with the treatment of anthraquinone-2, 6-disulfonic acid (AQDS) and iron reducing bacteria increased much faster than the control. Arsenic released from iron plaque with the iron reduction, and a significant correlation between Fe(II) and total As in culture was observed. However, compared with control, the increasing rate of As was inhibited by iron reducing bacteria especially in the presence of AQDS. In addition, the concentrations of As(III) and As(V) in abiotic treatments were higher than those in the biotic treatments at day 30. These results indicated that both microbial and chemical reductions of iron plaque caused As release from iron plaque to aqueous phase, however, microbial iron reduction induced the formation of more crystalline iron minerals, leading to As sequestration. In addition, the presence of AQDS in solution can accelerate the iron reduction, the As release from iron plaque and subsequently the As retention in the crystalline iron mineral. Thus, our results suggested that it is possible to remediate As contaminated soils by utilizing iron reducing bacteria and AQDS. PMID:20108691

  1. Hydrodynamic Coupling in Microbially Mediated Fracture Mineralization: Formation of Self-Organized Groundwater Flow Channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lunn, R. J.; El Mountassir, G.; MacLachlan, E.; Moir, H.

    2013-12-01

    Evidence of fossilized microorganisms embedded within mineral veins and mineral-filled fractures has been observed in a wide range of geological environments. Microorganisms can act as sites for mineral nucleation and also contribute to mineral precipitation by inducing local geochemical changes. In this study, we explore fundamental controls on microbially induced mineralization in rock fractures. Specifically, we systematically investigate the influence of hydrodynamics (velocity, flow rate, aperture) on microbially mediated calcite precipitation. We use a case study of microbially induced calcite precipitation as a model biomineralization system to investigate potential feedback mechanisms between the temporally varying patterns of mineral precipitation within a fracture and the resulting variations in the local velocity field. Fractures are represented as a series of precision-etched parallel channels between a pair of sealed Perspex plates. Multiple channels are designed to maintain a constant flow rate, whilst independently adjusting channel aperture and width to explore the effects of aperture and fluid velocity on biomineral precipitation. Our experimental results demonstrate that a feedback mechanism exists between the gradual reduction in fracture aperture due to precipitation, and its effect on the local fluid velocity. This feedback results in mineral fill distributions that focus flow into a small number of self-organizing channels that remain open, ultimately controlling the final aperture profile that governs flow within the fracture. This feedback mechanism exists because precipitation on the fracture walls (as opposed to in solution) requires the bacteria to be transported to the fracture surface. Bacteria settle out of a quiescent solution at a velocity that is dependent on individual floc size and density. This settling velocity competes with the bed shear velocity, inhibiting deposition via entrainment. As precipitation progresses, the flow

  2. Strategies to Optimize Microbially-Mediated Mitigation of Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Landfill Cover Soils

    SciTech Connect

    Jeremy Semrau; Sung-Woo Lee; Jeongdae Im; Sukhwan Yoon; Michael Barcelona

    2010-09-30

    The overall objective of this project, 'Strategies to Optimize Microbially-Mediated Mitigation of Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Landfill Cover Soils' was to develop effective, efficient, and economic methodologies by which microbial production of nitrous oxide can be minimized while also maximizing microbial consumption of methane in landfill cover soils. A combination of laboratory and field site experiments found that the addition of nitrogen and phenylacetylene stimulated in situ methane oxidation while minimizing nitrous oxide production. Molecular analyses also indicated that methane-oxidizing bacteria may play a significant role in not only removing methane, but in nitrous oxide production as well, although the contribution of ammonia-oxidizing archaea to nitrous oxide production can not be excluded at this time. Future efforts to control both methane and nitrous oxide emissions from landfills as well as from other environments (e.g., agricultural soils) should consider these issues. Finally, a methanotrophic biofiltration system was designed and modeled for the promotion of methanotrophic activity in local methane 'hotspots' such as landfills. Model results as well as economic analyses of these biofilters indicate that the use of methanotrophic biofilters for controlling methane emissions is technically feasible, and provided either the costs of biofilter construction and operation are reduced or the value of CO{sub 2} credits is increased, can also be economically attractive.

  3. Monitoring of microbially mediated corrosion and scaling processes using redox potential measurements.

    PubMed

    Opel, Oliver; Eggerichs, Tanja; Otte, Tobias; Ruck, Wolfgang K L

    2014-06-01

    The use of redox potential measurements for corrosion and scaling monitoring, including microbially mediated processes, is demonstrated. As a case study, monitoring data from 10years of operation of an aquifer thermal energy storage (ATES) site located in Berlin, Germany, were examined. (Fe(2+))-activities as well as [Fe(3+)]-build up rates were calculated from redox potential, pH, conductivity, temperature and dissolved oxygen measurements. Calculations are based on assuming (Fe(3+))-activity being controlled by Fe(OH)3-solubility, the primary iron(III)-precipitate. This approach was tested using a simple log-linear model including dissolved oxygen besides major Fe(2+)-ligands. Measured redox potential values in groundwater used for thermal storage are met within ±8mV. In other systems comprising natural groundwater and in heating and cooling systems in buildings, quantitatively interpretable values are obtained also. It was possible to calculate particulate [Fe(3+)]-loads in the storage fluids in the order of 2μM and correlate a decrease in filter lifetimes to [Fe(3+)]-build up rates, although observations show clear signs of microbially mediated scaling processes involving iron and sulphur cycling. PMID:24411307

  4. Microbial mediated formation of Fe-carbonate minerals under extreme acidic conditions

    PubMed Central

    Sánchez-Román, Mónica; Fernández-Remolar, David; Amils, Ricardo; Sánchez-Navas, Antonio; Schmid, Thomas; Martin-Uriz, Patxi San; Rodríguez, Nuria; McKenzie, Judith A.; Vasconcelos, Crisogono

    2014-01-01

    Discovery of Fe-carbonate precipitation in Rio Tinto, a shallow river with very acidic waters, situated in Huelva, South-western Spain, adds a new dimension to our understanding of carbonate formation. Sediment samples from this low-pH system indicate that carbonates are formed in physico-chemical conditions ranging from acid to neutral pH. Evidence for microbial mediation is observed in secondary electron images (Fig. 1), which reveal rod-shaped bacteria embedded in the surface of siderite nanocrystals. The formation of carbonates in Rio Tinto is related to the microbial reduction of ferric iron coupled to the oxidation of organic compounds. Herein, we demonstrate for the first time, that Acidiphilium sp. PM, an iron-reducing bacterium isolated from Rio Tinto, mediates the precipitation of siderite (FeCO3) under acidic conditions and at a low temperature (30°C). We describe nucleation of siderite on nanoglobules in intimate association with the bacteria cell surface. This study has major implications for understanding carbonate formation on the ancient Earth or extraterrestrial planets. PMID:24755961

  5. Microbial Populations Associated with Phosphate-Mediated Vadose Zone Sequestration of Strontium and Uranium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, C. H.; Chou, J.; Fujita, Y.; Bill, M.; Brodie, E. L.; Andersen, G. L.; Hazen, T. C.; Conrad, M. S.

    2007-12-01

    Significant quantities of metals and radionuclides are contained in thick unsaturated zones at several contaminated sites in the western US. In many cases, this contamination has migrated to underlying groundwater, sometimes decades after being released into the subsurface. Because of the prohibitive costs associated with physically removing the contamination, an attractive remedy to this problem is to develop methods for long-term in situ stabilization of the contamination in the vadose zone. Our research focuses on developing a method of introducing gaseous compounds to stimulate precipitation of stable phosphate mineral phases in the vadose zone to immobilize soluble contaminants thus minimizing further transport to groundwater. Preliminary studies have demonstrated that biological precipitation of phosphate minerals can be stimulated under unsaturated conditions by injection of triethyl phosphate (TEP) gas. Microorganisms hydrolyze TEP, releasing inorganic phosphate, catalyzing the precipitation of metals and radionuclide-containing phosphate minerals. Our initial results demonstrate that a mixed culture of aerobic microorganisms from vadose zone sediments, enriched with TEP, produce significantly higher concentrations of inorganic phosphate than the no TEP control. A high-density microarray (PhyloChip) capable of detecting up to 9,000 prokaryotic taxa will be used to identify the microbial community composition of the enriched culture. In addition, the metabolically active organisms will be investigated through extraction and hybridization of ribosomal RNA. Organisms capable of hydrolyzing TEP to inorganic phosphate will be further characterized to determine the requirements for aerobic microbially-mediated radionuclide immobilization. The chemical and isotopic compositions of the reactants and products will be measured to enable in situ monitoring of microbial TEP utilization. The result of these studies will be the basis for unsaturated column experiments

  6. Salt marsh plants as key mediators on the level of cadmium impact on microbial denitrification.

    PubMed

    Almeida, C Marisa R; Mucha, Ana P; da Silva, Marta Nunes; Monteiro, Maria; Salgado, Paula; Necrasov, Tatiana; Magalhães, Catarina

    2014-09-01

    The fate of excess nitrogen in estuaries is determined by the microbial-driven nitrogen cycle, being denitrification a key process since it definitely removes fixed nitrogen as N2. However, estuaries receive and retain metals, which may negatively affect this process efficiency. In this study, we evaluated the role of salt marsh plants in mediating cadmium (Cd) impact on microbial denitrification process. Juncus maritimus and Phragmites australis from an estuary were collected together with the sediment involving their roots, each placed in vessels and maintained in a greenhouse, exposed to natural light, with tides simulation. Similar non-vegetated sediment vessels were prepared. After 3 weeks of accommodation, nine vessels (three per plant species plus three non-vegetated) were doped with 20 mg/L Cd(2+) saline solution, nine vessels were doped with 2 mg/L Cd(2+) saline solution and nine vessels were left undoped. After 10 weeks, vessels were dissembled and denitrification potential was measured in sediment slurries. Results revealed that the addition of Cd did not cause an effect on the denitrification process in non-vegetated sediment but had a clear stimulation in colonized ones (39 % for P. australis and 36 % for J. maritimus). In addition, this increase on denitrification rates was followed by a decrease on N2O emissions and on N2O/N2 ratios in both J. maritimus and P. australis sediments, increasing the efficiency of the N2O step of denitrification pathway. Therefore, our results suggested that the presence of salt marsh plants functioned as key mediators on the degree of Cd impact on microbial denitrification. PMID:24792983

  7. Development of microbial-enzyme-mediated decomposition model parameters through steady-state and dynamic analyses

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Gangsheng; Post, Wilfred M; Mayes, Melanie

    2013-01-01

    We developed a Microbial-ENzyme-mediated Decomposition (MEND) model, based on the Michaelis-Menten kinetics, that describes the dynamics of physically defined pools of soil organic matter (SOC). These include particulate, mineral-associated, dissolved organic matter (POC, MOC, and DOC, respectively), microbial biomass, and associated exoenzymes. The ranges and/or distributions of parameters were determined by both analytical steady-state and dynamic analyses with SOC data from the literature. We used an improved multi-objective parameter sensitivity analysis (MOPSA) to identify the most important parameters for the full model: maintenance of microbial biomass, turnover and synthesis of enzymes, and carbon use efficiency (CUE). The model predicted an increase of 2 C (baseline temperature =12 C) caused the pools of POC-Cellulose, MOC, and total SOC to increase with dynamic CUE and decrease with constant CUE, as indicated by the 50% confidence intervals. Regardless of dynamic or constant CUE, the pool sizes of POC, MOC, and total SOC varied from 8% to 8% under +2 C. The scenario analysis using a single parameter set indicates that higher temperature with dynamic CUE might result in greater net increases in both POC-Cellulose and MOC pools. Different dynamics of various SOC pools reflected the catalytic functions of specific enzymes targeting specific substrates and the interactions between microbes, enzymes, and SOC. With the feasible parameter values estimated in this study, models incorporating fundamental principles of microbial-enzyme dynamics can lead to simulation results qualitatively different from traditional models with fast/slow/passive pools.

  8. Applying Reactive Barrier Technology to Enhance Microbially-mediated Denitrification during Managed Aquifer Recharge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beganskas, S.; Weir, W. B.; Harmon, R. E.; Gorski, G.; Fisher, A. T.; Saltikov, C.; Young, K. S.; Runneals, D.; Teo, E. K.; Stoneburner, B.; Hernandez, J.

    2015-12-01

    We are running field experiments to observe and quantify microbially-mediated water quality improvement via denitrification during infiltration in the shallow subsurface. Nitrate is a pervasive groundwater contaminant, and nitrate removal through denitrification can occur during infiltration in natural and anthropogenic systems, including during managed aquifer recharge (MAR). The rate of denitrification can vary depending on factors such as infiltration rate; previous work suggests that denitrification rates can increase monotonically with infiltration rates until reaching a critical threshold. We are performing controlled field tests of variables that affect denitrification rate, including sampling to link water chemistry changes to microbial ecology and activity. This study explores how microbial activity and denitrification rates respond to different infiltration rates and the presence or absence of a reactive material (wood chips, a carbon source). We are conducting four two-week-long tests, each under different conditions. For each test, we measure bulk infiltration rate (the sum of lateral and vertical infiltration), vertical infiltration rate using heat as a tracer, and water level. We collect surface and subsurface water samples daily, and we collect soil samples at the start and end of each test. For each water sample, we are measuring NO3-, NO2-, NH3, DOC, and N and O isotopes in nitrate. Soil samples will be tested for grain size, total C/N, and the presence of microbiological genes associated with denitrification. These results will expand our knowledge of the conditions under which denitrification occurs by implicating specific microorganisms and physical infiltration parameters. Our design has the potential for additional experimentation with variables that impact water chemistry during infiltration. This study has broad applications for designing MAR systems that effectively improve water supply and water quality.

  9. Microbially-Mediated Subsurface Calcite Precipitation for Removal of Hazardous Divalent Cations

    SciTech Connect

    Colwell, Frederick S.; Smith, R.W.; Ferris, F. Gratn; Ingram, Jani C.; Reysenbach, A.-L.; Fujita, Yoshiko; Tyler, T.L.; Taylor, J.L.; Banta, A.; Delwiche, M.E.; McLing, T.; Cortez, Marnie, M.; Watwood, M.E.

    2003-03-27

    We are investigating microbially-mediated acceleration of calcite precipitation and co-precipitation of hazardous divalent cations (e.g., 90Sr) in calcite saturated subsurface systems. In theory, the addition of urea to an aquifer or vadose zone and its subsequent hydrolysis by indigenous microbes will cause an increase in alkalinity, pH and calcite precipitation. Lab studies indicated the ability of various bacteria to precipitate calcite through urea hydrolysis and that incorporation of strontium in biogenically-formed calcite is greater than in abiotically formed calcite. Results from a field experiment in a pristine location in the Snake River Plain aquifer involving the phased addition of molasses and then urea showed increases in total cell numbers, rate of urea hydrolysis and calcite formation during the study. The combined diagnostic approaches of microbiology, molecular ecology and analytical chemistry demonstrate the feasibility of this biogeochemical manipulation for subsurface remediation at arid Western DOE sites such as Hanford and INEEL.

  10. Recently identified microbial guild mediates soil N2O sink capacity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, Christopher M.; Spor, Ayme; Brennan, Fiona P.; Breuil, Marie-Christine; Bru, David; Lemanceau, Philippe; Griffiths, Bryan; Hallin, Sara; Philippot, Laurent

    2014-09-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O) is the predominant ozone-depleting substance and contributes approximately 6% to overall global warming. Terrestrial ecosystems account for nearly 70% of total global N2O atmospheric loading, of which at least 45% can be attributed to microbial cycling of nitrogen in agriculture. The reduction of N2O to nitrogen gas by microorganisms is critical for mitigating its emissions from terrestrial ecosystems, yet the determinants of a soil's capacity to act as a source or sink for N2O remain uncertain. Here, we demonstrate that the soil N2O sink capacity is mostly explained by the abundance and phylogenetic diversity of a newly described N2O-reducing microbial group, which mediate the influence of edaphic factors. Analyses of interactions and niche preference similarities suggest niche differentiation or even competitive interactions between organisms with the two types of N2O reductase. We further identified several recurring communities comprised of co-occurring N2O-reducing bacterial genotypes that were significant indicators of the soil N2O sink capacity across different European soils.

  11. Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).

    PubMed

    Rasmussen, Sonja A; Watson, Amelia K; Swerdlow, David L

    2016-06-01

    Since the identification of the first patients with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in 2012, over 1,600 cases have been reported as of February 2016. Most cases have occurred in Saudi Arabia or in other countries on or near the Arabian Peninsula, but travel-associated cases have also been seen in countries outside the Arabian Peninsula. MERS-CoV causes a severe respiratory illness in many patients, with a case fatality rate as high as 40%, although when contacts are investigated, a significant proportion of patients are asymptomatic or only have mild symptoms. At this time, no vaccines or treatments are available. Epidemiological and other data suggest that the source of most primary cases is exposure to camels. Person-to-person transmission occurs in household and health care settings, although sustained and efficient person-to-person transmission has not been observed. Strict adherence to infection control recommendations has been associated with control of previous outbreaks. Vigilance is needed because genomic changes in MERS-CoV could result in increased transmissibility, similar to what was seen in severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV). PMID:27337460

  12. An orthopoxvirus-based vaccine reduces virus excretion after MERS-CoV infection in dromedary camels.

    PubMed

    Haagmans, Bart L; van den Brand, Judith M A; Raj, V Stalin; Volz, Asisa; Wohlsein, Peter; Smits, Saskia L; Schipper, Debby; Bestebroer, Theo M; Okba, Nisreen; Fux, Robert; Bensaid, Albert; Solanes Foz, David; Kuiken, Thijs; Baumgärtner, Wolfgang; Segalés, Joaquim; Sutter, Gerd; Osterhaus, Albert D M E

    2016-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infections have led to an ongoing outbreak in humans, which was fueled by multiple zoonotic MERS-CoV introductions from dromedary camels. In addition to the implementation of hygiene measures to limit further camel-to-human and human-to-human transmissions, vaccine-mediated reduction of MERS-CoV spread from the animal reservoir may be envisaged. Here we show that a modified vaccinia virus Ankara (MVA) vaccine expressing the MERS-CoV spike protein confers mucosal immunity in dromedary camels. Compared with results for control animals, we observed a significant reduction of excreted infectious virus and viral RNA transcripts in vaccinated animals upon MERS-CoV challenge. Protection correlated with the presence of serum neutralizing antibodies to MERS-CoV. Induction of MVA-specific antibodies that cross-neutralize camelpox virus would also provide protection against camelpox. PMID:26678878

  13. Manipulation of microbial extracellular electron transfer by changing molecular structure of phenazine-type redox mediators.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jie-Jie; Chen, Wei; He, Hui; Li, Dao-Bo; Li, Wen-Wei; Xiong, Lu; Yu, Han-Qing

    2013-01-15

    Phenazines, as a type of electron shuttle, are involved in various biological processes to facilitate microbial energy metabolism and electron transfer. They constitute a large group of nitrogen-containing heterocyclic compounds, which can be produced by a diverse range of bacteria or by artificial synthesis. They vary significantly in their properties, depending mainly on the nature and position of substitutent group. Thus, it is of great interest to find out the most favorable substituent type and molecular structure of phenazines for electron transfer routes. Here, the impacts of the substituent group on the reduction potentials of phenazine-type redox mediators in aqueous solution were investigated by quantum chemical calculations, and the calculation results were further validated with experimental data. The results show that the reaction free energy was substantially affected by the location of substituent groups on the phenazine molecule and the protonated water clusters. For the main proton addition process, the phenazines substituted with electron-donating groups and those with electron-withdrawing groups interacted with different protonated water clusters, attributed to the proximity effect of water molecules on proton transfer. Thus, high energy conversion efficiency could be achieved by controlling electron flow route with appropriate substituted phenazines to reduce the biological energy acquisition. This study provides useful information for designing efficient redox mediators to promote electron transfer between microbes and terminal acceptors, which are essential to bioenergy recovery from wastes and environmental bioremediation. PMID:23244024

  14. Quinone-mediated microbial synthesis of reduced graphene oxide with peroxidase-like activity.

    PubMed

    Liu, Guangfei; Zhang, Xin; Zhou, Jiti; Wang, Aijie; Wang, Jing; Jin, Ruofei; Lv, Hong

    2013-12-01

    The effects of different quinones on graphene oxide (GO) reduction by Shewanella oneidensis MR-1 and the peroxidase activity of the resultant reduced graphene oxide (QRGO) were studied. The presence of 100 μM anthraquinone-2-sulfonate (AQS), anthraquinone-2,6-disulfonate and 5-hydroxy-1,4-naphthoquinone could lead to 1.6-2.8-fold increase in GO reduction rate, whereas anthraquinone-2-carboxylate slowed down the reduction. The stimulating effects of AQS increased with the increase of its concentration (10-100 μM). The mediated effects were proved by direct GO reduction by microbially reduced AQS. The mediated reduction of GO to QRGO was characterized by UV-vis, XRD, FTIR, Raman spectra, XPS, TEM and AFM, respectively. The as-prepared QRGO possessed peroxidase-like activity, which could catalyze the oxidation of 3,3'5,5'-tetramethylbenzidine by H2O2, and followed Michealis-Menten kinetics. A colorimetric sensor for quantitative determination of glucose based on the peroxidase activity of QRGO was developed over a range of 1-120 μM with a detection limit of 1 μM. PMID:24140856

  15. Season mediates herbivore effects on litter and soil microbial abundance and activity in a semi-arid woodland

    SciTech Connect

    Classen, Aimee T; Overby, Stephen; Hart, Stephen C; Koch, George W; Whitham, Thomas G

    2007-01-01

    Herbivores can directly impact ecosystem function by altering litter quality entering an ecosystem or indirectly by affecting a shift in the microbial community that mediate nutrient processes. We examine herbivore susceptibility and resistance effects on litter microarthropod and soil microbial communities to test the general hypothesis that herbivore driven changes in litter inputs will feedback to the microbial community. Our study population consisted of individual trees that are susceptible or resistant to the stem-boring moth (Dioryctria albovittella) and trees that herbivores have been manually removed since 1982. Moth herbivory increased pi on litter nitrogen concentrations (16%) and canopy precipitation infiltration (28%), both significant factors influencing litter and soil microbial populations. Our research resulted in three major conclusions: 1) In spite of an increase in litter quality, herbivory does not change litter microarthropod abundance or species richness. 2) Herbivore susceptibility alters bulk soil microbial communities, but not soil properties. 3) Season has a strong influence on microbial communities, and their response to herbivore inputs, in this semi-arid ecosystem.

  16. Final report - Microbial pathways for the reduction of mercury in saturated subsurface sediments

    SciTech Connect

    Tamar barkay; Lily Young; Gerben Zylstra

    2009-08-25

    Mercury is a component of mixed wastes that have contaminated vast areas of the deep subsurface as a result of nuclear weapon and energy production. While this mercury is mostly bound to soil constituents episodes of groundwater contamination are known in some cases resulting in potable water super saturated with Hg(0). Microbial processes that reduce Hg(II) to the elemental form Hg(0) in the saturated subsurface sediments may contribute to this problem. When we started the project, only one microbial pathway for the reduction of Hg(II), the one mediated by the mer operon in mercury resistant bacteria was known. As we had previously demonstrated that the mer mediated process occurred in highly contaminated environments (Schaefer et al., 2004), and mercury concentrations in the subsurface were reported to be low (Krabbenhoft and Babiarz, 1992), we hypothesized that other microbial processes might be active in reducing Hg(II) to Hg(0) in saturated subsurface environments. The specific goals of our projects were: (1) Investigating the potential for Hg(II) reduction under varying electron accepting conditions in subsurface sediments and relating these potential to mer gene distribution; and (2) Examining the physiological and biochemical characteristics of the interactions of anaerobic bacteria with mercury. The results are briefly summarized with references to published papers and manuscripts in preparation where details about our research can be found. Additional information may be found in copies of our published manuscripts and conference proceedings, and our yearly reports that were submitted through the RIMS system.

  17. Microbial impacts on the geochemistry evolution in a nuclear waste repository -Laboratory experiment of microbially mediated redox changes-

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nagaoka, T.

    2010-12-01

    It is important to investigate geochemical evolution around nuclear waste repositories, because geochemical conditions could affect radionuclide migration. Therefore, a laboratory jar experiment was conducted with subsurface sediments, in order to assess the response of the geochemical and microbial communities toward redox processes. The redox process was induced by exposure to air and discontinuation to sediment suspension, which simulated the process occurring during operation of nuclear waste repositories, i.e., tunnel excavation, transport of waste containers, and final backfilling. During the experiments, redox potential, dissolved oxygen, and pH in the suspension were measured, and the concentrations of dissolved ions concentration (e.g., NO3-, SO42- and organic acid), HCl-extractable iron, and also head space gasses (e.g., CO2, CH4) in the jar were analyzed. Moreover, microbial DNA was extracted from the suspension, and PCR-DGGE analysis was performed to analyze the response of microbial communities toward the geochemical changes. As a results, after discontinuation of air exposure with lactate amendment, redox potentials decreased from ca. +300 mV to -430 m V (vs. Ag/AgCl), and the sequential terminal electron-accepting process (TEAPs) was observed with the reactions of aerobic respiration, nitrate reduction, iron reduction, sulfate reduction, and methanogenesis. The related species of the microbes along with TEAPs, e.g., Pseudomonas sp. for nitrate reduction and Desulfovibrio sp. for sulfate reduction, was also detected. These results indicated that the microbial activities would affect the geochemical changes in nuclear repositories.

  18. Robust k-mer frequency estimation using gapped k-mers

    PubMed Central

    Ghandi, Mahmoud; Mohammad-Noori, Morteza

    2013-01-01

    Oligomers of fixed length, k, commonly known as k-mers, are often used as fundamental elements in the description of DNA sequence features of diverse biological function, or as intermediate elements in the constuction of more complex descriptors of sequence features such as position weight matrices. k-mers are very useful as general sequence features because they constitute a complete and unbiased feature set, and do not require parameterization based on incomplete knowledge of biological mechanisms. However, a fundamental limitation in the use of k-mers as sequence features is that as k is increased, larger spatial correlations in DNA sequence elements can be described, but the frequency of observing any specific k-mer becomes very small, and rapidly approaches a sparse matrix of binary counts. Thus any statistical learning approach using k-mers will be susceptible to noisy estimation of k-mer frequencies once k becomes large. Because all molecular DNA interactions have limited spatial extent, gapped k-mers often carry the relevant biological signal. Here we use gapped k-mer counts to more robustly estimate the ungapped k-mer frequencies, by deriving an equation for the minimum norm estimate of k-mer frequencies given an observed set of gapped k-mer frequencies. We demonstrate that this approach provides a more accurate estimate of the k-mer frequencies in real biological sequences using a sample of CTCF binding sites in the human genome. PMID:23861010

  19. Microbially-mediated method for synthesis of non-oxide semiconductor nanoparticles

    DOEpatents

    Phelps, Tommy J.; Lauf, Robert J.; Moon, Ji Won; Rondinone, Adam J.; Love, Lonnie J.; Duty, Chad Edward; Madden, Andrew Stephen; Li, Yiliang; Ivanov, Ilia N.; Rawn, Claudia Jeanette

    2014-06-24

    The invention is directed to a method for producing non-oxide semiconductor nanoparticles, the method comprising: (a) subjecting a combination of reaction components to conditions conducive to microbially-mediated formation of non-oxide semiconductor nanoparticles, wherein said combination of reaction components comprises i) anaerobic microbes, ii) a culture medium suitable for sustaining said anaerobic microbes, iii) a metal component comprising at least one type of metal ion, iv) a non-metal component containing at least one non-metal selected from the group consisting of S, Se, Te, and As, and v) one or more electron donors that provide donatable electrons to said anaerobic microbes during consumption of the electron donor by said anaerobic microbes; and (b) isolating said non-oxide semiconductor nanoparticles, which contain at least one of said metal ions and at least one of said non-metals. The invention is also directed to non-oxide semiconductor nanoparticle compositions produced as above and having distinctive properties.

  20. Microbial Mediation of Dolomite Precipitation in Natural Environments, Culture Experiments and Molecular Studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meister, P.; Nealson, K.; McKenzie, J. A.; Warthmann, R.; Vasconcelos, C.

    2005-12-01

    Although dolomite [CaMg(CO3)2] is a common carbonate mineral in sedimentary rocks, it is rarely observed forming in modern environments, and, until recently, experimental precipitation under Earth surface conditions proved impossible. With the discovery of microbial mediated dolomite formation in culture experiments with sulfate-reducing bacteria, it has become apparent that microbes play an important role in overcoming the kinetic barrier of mineral precipitation and, thus, may represent a key factor controlling early diagenetic processes throughout Earth history. The detailed mechanisms of these processes, however, remain poorly understood. Recent studies of dolomite layers in organic carbon-rich hemipelagic sediments recovered on the Peru margin during Ocean Drilling Program Leg 201 (Meister et al., in prep.) indicate precipitation at the interface between the sulphate reduction and methanogenic zones. At this chemical front, alkalinity is strongly increased, sulphate ions, a possible inhibitor of dolomite precipitation, are efficiently removed, and highest total cell densities were counted (up to 10 to the 9 cells / cm3; Shipboard Scientific Party, 2003). These results strengthen the model that microbes are involved in dolomite formation, providing the appropriate chemical conditions, whereas the high cell density may kinetically control the strictly focused precipitation process. We are currently conducting a systematic study of the precipitation of dolomite and other carbonate minerals in the Ca-Mg-bicarbonate-system. In preliminary experiments under aerobic conditions we used agar plates with a marine medium to grow a bacterium isolated from sediments of the San Pedro basin (California), an upwelling area similar to the Peru margin. We observed that the crystals formed only inside of the colonies and showed a dumbbell-shaped morphology similar to dolomite produced in anaerobic experiments. X-ray diffraction patterns revealed, however, that the product was

  1. Short communication: Measuring the angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitory activity of an 8-amino acid (8mer) fragment of the C12 antihypertensive peptide.

    PubMed

    Paul, Moushumi; Phillips, John G; Renye, John A

    2016-05-01

    An 8-AA (8mer) fragment (PFPEVFGK) of a known antihypertensive peptide derived from bovine αS1-casein (C12 antihypertensive peptide) was synthesized by microwave-assisted solid-phase peptide synthesis and purified by reverse phase HPLC. Its ability to inhibit angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) was assessed and compared with that of the parent 12mer peptide (FFVAPFPEVFGK) to determine the effect of truncating the sequence on overall hypotensive activity. The activity of the truncated 8mer peptide was found to be almost 1.5 times less active than that of the 12mer, with ACE-inhibiting IC50 (half-maximal inhibitory concentration) values of 108 and 69μM, for the 8mer and 12mer, respectively. Although the 8mer peptide is less active than the original 12mer peptide, its overall activity is comparable to activities reported for other small proteins that elicit physiological responses within humans. These results suggest that microbial degradation of the 12mer peptide would not result in a complete loss of antihypertensive activity if used to supplement fermented foods and that the stable 8mer peptide could have potential as a blood pressure-lowering agent for use in functional foods. PMID:26971162

  2. Effects of Sediment Iron Mineral Composition on Microbially Mediated Changes in Divalent Metal Speciation: Importance of Ferrihydrite

    SciTech Connect

    D. Craig Cooper; Andrew H. Neal; Ravichandran K. Kukkadapu; Dale Brewe; Aaron Coby; Flynn W. Picardal

    2005-04-01

    Dissimilatory metal reducing bacteria (DMRB) can influence geochemical processes that affect the speciation and mobility of metallic contaminants within natural environments. Most investigations into the effect of DMRB on sediment geochemistry utilize various synthetic oxides as the FeIII source (e.g., ferrihydrite, goethite, hematite). These synthetic materials do not represent the mineralogical composition of natural systems, and do not account for the effect of sediment mineral composition on microbially mediated processes. Our experiments with a DMRB (Shewanella putrefaciens 200) and a divalent metal (ZnII) indicate that, while complexity in sediment mineral composition may not strongly impact the degree of “microbial iron reducibility,” it does alter the geochemical consequences of such microbial activity. The ferrihydrite and clay mineral content are key factors. Microbial reduction of a synthetic blend of goethite and ferrihydrite (VHSA-G) carrying previously adsorbed ZnII increased both [ZnII-aq] and the proportion of adsorbed ZnII that is insoluble in 0.5 M HCl. Microbial reduction of FeIII in similarly treated iron-bearing clayey sediment (Fe-K-Q) and hematite sand, which contained minimal amounts of ferrihydrite, had no similar effect. Addition of ferrihydrite increased the effect of microbial FeIII reduction on ZnII association with a 0.5 M HCl insoluble phase in all sediment treatments, but the effect was inconsequential in the Fe-K-Q. Zinc k-edge X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) data indicate that microbial FeIII reduction altered ZnII bonding in fundamentally different ways for VHSA-G and Fe-K-Q. In VHSA-G, ZnO6 octahedra were present in both sterile and reduced samples; with a slightly increased average Zn-O coordination number and a slightly higher degree of long-range order in the reduced sample. This result may be consistent with enhanced ZnII substitution within goethite in the microbially reduced sample, though these data do not show the

  3. Development of an anti-microbial peptide-mediated liposomal delivery system: a novel approach towards pH-responsive anti-microbial peptides.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qianyu; Tang, Jie; Ran, Rui; Liu, Yayuan; Zhang, Zhirong; Gao, Huile; He, Qin

    2016-05-01

    On one hand, the application of anti-microbial peptides (AMPs) in the construction of AMPs-mediated drug delivery system has not yet been fully exploited; on the other hand, its non-selectivity in vivo has also limited its clinical application. In this work, we chose one pH-responsive peptide, [D]-H6L9, and functionalized it onto the surface of liposomes (D-Lip). The protonation of histidines in the sequence of [D]-H6L9 under pH 6.3 could switch the surface charge of D-Lip from negative (under pH 7.4) to positive (under pH 6.3), and the cellular uptake and tumor spheroids uptake were increased accordingly. Lysosome co-localization assay suggested that there was only little overlap of D-Lip with lysosomes in 12 h, which indicated that D-Lip could escape lysosomes effectively. In vivo biodistribution assay on C26 tumor-bearing BALB/C mice showed that DiR-labeled D-Lip could reach tumors as much as PEG-Lip, and both tumor slices and quantitative measurement of dispersed cells of in vivo tumors by flow cytometry demonstrated that D-Lip could be taken up by tumors more efficiently. Therefore, we have established an anti-microbial peptide-mediated liposomal delivery system for tumor delivery. PMID:25693639

  4. Insoluble Fe-humic acid complex as a solid-phase electron mediator for microbial reductive dechlorination.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Chunfang; Zhang, Dongdong; Li, Zhiling; Akatsuka, Tetsuji; Yang, Suyin; Suzuki, Daisuke; Katayama, Arata

    2014-06-01

    We report that the insoluble Fe-HA complex, which was synthesized with both commercial Aldrich humic acid (HA) and natural HA, functions as a solid-phase electron mediator (EM) for the anaerobic microbial dechlorination of pentachlorophenol. Spectroscopic characterizations and sequential Fe extraction demonstrated that the Fe-HA complex was predominated with Na4P2O7-labile Fe (represented as the organically bound Fe fraction) and poorly ordered Fe fraction (the fraction left in the residue after the sequential extraction), which were associated with different possible binding processes with carboxylate and phenolic groups. The change in the electron-mediating activity caused by Fe extraction indicated that the electron-mediating function of the Fe-HA complex is attributable to the Na4P2O7-labile Fe fraction. The Fe-HA complex also accelerated the microbial reduction of Fe(III) oxide, which suggested the presence of multiple electron-mediating functions in the complex. The electron shuttle assay showed that the Fe-HA complex had an electron-accepting capacity of 0.82 mequiv g(-1) dry Fe-HA complex. The presence of redox-active moieties in the Fe-HA complex was verified by cyclic voltammetry analysis of the sample after electrical reduction, with a redox potential estimated at 0.02 V (vs a standard hydrogen electrode). PMID:24758743

  5. Magnetic nanoparticle-mediated isolation of functional bacteria in a complex microbial community

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Dayi; Berry, James P; Zhu, Di; Wang, Yun; Chen, Yin; Jiang, Bo; Huang, Shi; Langford, Harry; Li, Guanghe; Davison, Paul A; Xu, Jian; Aries, Eric; Huang, Wei E

    2015-01-01

    Although uncultured microorganisms have important roles in ecosystems, their ecophysiology in situ remains elusive owing to the difficulty of obtaining live cells from their natural habitats. In this study, we employed a novel magnetic nanoparticle-mediated isolation (MMI) method to recover metabolically active cells of a group of previously uncultured phenol degraders, Burkholderiales spp., from coking plant wastewater biosludge; five other culturable phenol degraders—Rhodococcus sp., Chryseobacterium sp. and three different Pseudomonas spp.—were also isolated from the same biosludge using traditional methods. The kinetics of phenol degradation by MMI-recovered cells (MRCs) was similar to that of the original sludge. Stable isotope probing (SIP) and pyrosequencing of the 16S rRNA from the ‘heavy' DNA (13C-DNA) fractions indicated that Burkholderiales spp. were the key phenol degraders in situ in the biosludge, consistent with the results of MRCs. Single-cell Raman micro-spectroscopy was applied to probe individual bacteria in the MRCs obtained from the SIP experiment and showed that 79% of them were fully 13C-labelled. Biolog assays on the MRCs revealed the impact of various carbon and nitrogen substrates on the efficiency of phenol degradation in the wastewater treatment plant biosludge. Specifically, hydroxylamine, a metabolite of ammonia oxidisation, but not nitrite, nitrate or ammonia, inhibited phenol degradation in the biosludge. Our results provided a novel insight into the occasional abrupt failure events that occur in the wastewater treatment plant. This study demonstrated that MMI is a powerful tool to recover live and functional cells in situ from a complex microbial community to enable further characterisation of their physiology. PMID:25191996

  6. Magnetic nanoparticle-mediated isolation of functional bacteria in a complex microbial community.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Dayi; Berry, James P; Zhu, Di; Wang, Yun; Chen, Yin; Jiang, Bo; Huang, Shi; Langford, Harry; Li, Guanghe; Davison, Paul A; Xu, Jian; Aries, Eric; Huang, Wei E

    2015-03-01

    Although uncultured microorganisms have important roles in ecosystems, their ecophysiology in situ remains elusive owing to the difficulty of obtaining live cells from their natural habitats. In this study, we employed a novel magnetic nanoparticle-mediated isolation (MMI) method to recover metabolically active cells of a group of previously uncultured phenol degraders, Burkholderiales spp., from coking plant wastewater biosludge; five other culturable phenol degraders-Rhodococcus sp., Chryseobacterium sp. and three different Pseudomonas spp.-were also isolated from the same biosludge using traditional methods. The kinetics of phenol degradation by MMI-recovered cells (MRCs) was similar to that of the original sludge. Stable isotope probing (SIP) and pyrosequencing of the 16S rRNA from the 'heavy' DNA ((13)C-DNA) fractions indicated that Burkholderiales spp. were the key phenol degraders in situ in the biosludge, consistent with the results of MRCs. Single-cell Raman micro-spectroscopy was applied to probe individual bacteria in the MRCs obtained from the SIP experiment and showed that 79% of them were fully (13)C-labelled. Biolog assays on the MRCs revealed the impact of various carbon and nitrogen substrates on the efficiency of phenol degradation in the wastewater treatment plant biosludge. Specifically, hydroxylamine, a metabolite of ammonia oxidisation, but not nitrite, nitrate or ammonia, inhibited phenol degradation in the biosludge. Our results provided a novel insight into the occasional abrupt failure events that occur in the wastewater treatment plant. This study demonstrated that MMI is a powerful tool to recover live and functional cells in situ from a complex microbial community to enable further characterisation of their physiology. PMID:25191996

  7. Conversion of orange peel waste biomass to bioelectricity using a mediator-less microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Miran, Waheed; Nawaz, Mohsin; Jang, Jiseon; Lee, Dae Sung

    2016-03-15

    Microorganisms have the potential to become a game-changer in sustainable energy production in the coming generations. Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) as an alternative renewable technology can capture bioenergy (electricity) from carbon-based sources by utilizing microorganisms as biocatalysts. This study demonstrated that MFC technology can be explored for bioelectricity production from orange peel waste (OPW), an agricultural byproduct and an organic substrate, without any chemical pretreatment or the addition of extra mediators. A maximum voltage generation of 0.59 ± 0.02 V (at 500 Ω) was achieved in a dual chamber MFC during stable voltage generation stages. The maximum power density and current density obtained were 358.8 ± 15.6 mW/m(2) and 847 ± 18.4 mA/m(2), respectively. Key components of OPW, namely pectin and cellulose, were also tested in their pure form, with pectin giving a stable current, while no significant current generation was achieved using cellulose alone as the substrate, thus demonstrating the absence of cellulose-degrading bacteria. Maximum pectinase and polygalacturonase enzyme activities of 18.55 U/g and 9.04 U/g (per gram of substrate), respectively were achieved during orange peel degradation in MFCs. Bacterial identification using 16S rRNA analysis of the initial inoculum fed to the MFC, the biofilm attached to the anode, and the anode suspension, showed significant diversity in community composition. A well-known exoelectrogen, Pseudomonas, was present among the predominant genera in the anode biofilm. PMID:26780146

  8. Stimulation of Microbially Mediated Arsenic Release in Bangladesh Aquifers by Young Carbon Indicated by Radiocarbon Analysis of Sedimentary Bacterial Lipids.

    PubMed

    Whaley-Martin, K J; Mailloux, B J; van Geen, A; Bostick, B C; Silvern, R F; Kim, C; Ahmed, K M; Choudhury, I; Slater, G F

    2016-07-19

    The sources of reduced carbon driving the microbially mediated release of arsenic to shallow groundwater in Bangladesh remain poorly understood. Using radiocarbon analysis of phospholipid fatty acids (PLFAs) and potential carbon pools, the abundance and carbon sources of the active, sediment-associated, in situ bacterial communities inhabiting shallow aquifers (<30 m) at two sites in Araihazar, Bangladesh, were investigated. At both sites, sedimentary organic carbon (SOC) Δ(14)C signatures of -631 ± 54‰ (n = 12) were significantly depleted relative to dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) of +24 ± 30‰ and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) of -230 ± 100‰. Sediment-associated PLFA Δ(14)C signatures (n = 10) at Site F (-167‰ to +20‰) and Site B (-163‰ to +21‰) were highly consistent and indicated utilization of carbon sources younger than the SOC, likely from the DOC pool. Sediment-associated PLFA Δ(14)C signatures were consistent with previously determined Δ(14)C signatures of microbial DNA sampled from groundwater at Site F indicating that the carbon source for these two components of the subsurface microbial community is consistent and is temporally stable over the two years between studies. These results demonstrate that the utilization of relatively young carbon sources by the subsurface microbial community occurs at sites with varying hydrology. Further they indicate that these young carbon sources drive the metabolism of the more abundant sediment-associated microbial communities that are presumably more capable of Fe reduction and associated release of As. This implies that an introduction of younger carbon to as of yet unaffected sediments (such as those comprising the deeper Pleistocene aquifer) could stimulate microbial communities and result in arsenic release. PMID:27333443

  9. Exploring redox-mediating characteristics of textile dye-bearing microbial fuel cells: thionin and malachite green.

    PubMed

    Chen, Bor-Yann; Xu, Bin; Qin, Lian-Jie; Lan, John Chi-Wei; Hsueh, Chung-Chuan

    2014-10-01

    Prior studies indicated that biodecolorized intermediates of azo dyes could act as electron shuttles to stimulate wastewater decolorization and bioelectricity generation (WD&BG) in microbial fuel cells (MFCs). This study tended to explore whether non-azo textile dyes (i.e., thionin and malachite green) could also own such redox-mediating capabilities for WD&BG. Prior findings mentioned that OH and/or NH2 substitute-containing auxochrome compounds (e.g., 2-aminophenol and 1,2-dihydroxybenzene) could effectively mediate electron transport in MFCs for simultaneous WD&BG. This work clearly suggested that the presence of electron-mediating textile dyes (e.g., thionin and malachite green (MG)) in MFCs is promising to stimulate color removal and bioelectricity generation. That is, using MFCs as operation strategy for wastewater biodecolorization is economically promising in industrial applications due to autocatalytic acceleration of electron-flux for WD&BG in MFCs. PMID:25062539

  10. Nutrient limitation and microbially mediated chemistry: studies using tuff inoculum obtained from the Exploratory Studies Facility, Yucca Mountain

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, C. I.; Chuu, Y. J.; Meike, A.; Ringelberg, D.; Sawvel, A.

    1998-10-30

    Flow-through bioreactors are used to investigate the relationship between the supply (and limitation) of major nutrients required by microorganisms (C, N, P, S) and effluent chemistry to obtain data that can be useful to develop models of microbially mediated aqueous chemistry. The bioreactors were inoculated with crushed tuff from Yucca Mountain. Six of the 14 bioreactor experiments currently in operation have shown growth, which occurred in as few as 5 days and as much as a few months after initiation of the experiment. All of the bioreactors exhibiting growth contained glucose as a carbon source, but other nutritional components varied. Chemical signatures of each bioreactor were compared to each other and selected results were compared to computer simulations of the equivalent abiotic chemical reactions. At 21 C, the richest medium formulation produced a microbial community that lowered the effluent pH from 6.4 to as low as 3.9. The same medium formulation at 50 C produced no significant change in pH but caused a significant increase in Cl after a period of 200 days. Variations in concentrations of other elements, some of which appear to be periodic (Ca, Mg, etc.) also occur. Bioreactors fed with low C, N, P, S media showed growth, but had stabilized at lower cell densities. The room temperature bioreactor in this group exhibited a phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) signature of sulfur- or iron-reducing bacteria, which produced a significant chemical signature in the effluent from that bioreactor. Growth had not been observed yet in the alkaline bioreactors, even in those containing glucose. The value of combining detailed chemical and community (e.g., ester-linked PLFA) analyses, long-duration experiments, and abiotic chemical models to distinguish chemical patterns is evident. Although all of the bioreactors contain the same initial microorganisms and mineral constituents, PLFA analysis demonstrates that both input chemistry and temperature determine the

  11. Temporal dynamic of parasite-mediated linkages between the forest canopy and soil processes and the microbial community.

    PubMed

    Mellado, Ana; Morillas, Lourdes; Gallardo, Antonio; Zamora, Regino

    2016-09-01

    Parasitic plants are important drivers of community and ecosystem properties. In this study, we identify different mechanisms by which mistletoe (Viscum album subsp. austriacum) can affect soil chemical and biological properties at different temporal stages of parasitism. We quantified the effect of parasitism on host growth and the number of frugivorous mutualists visiting the host canopy. Then we collected, identified, and weighed the organic matter input underneath tree canopies and analyzed its nutrient content. Simultaneously, we analyzed soil samples under tree canopies and examined the chemical properties, microbial abundance, and functional evenness of heterotrophic microbial communities. Mistletoe increased the amount, quality, and diversity of organic matter input beneath the host canopy, directly through its nutrient-rich litter and indirectly through a reduction in host litterfall and an increase in bird-derived debris. All these effects gave rise to enriched hotspots able to support larger and more functionally even soil microbial communities beneath parasitized hosts, the effects of which were accentuated after host death. We conclude that mistletoe, together with the biotic interactions it mediates, plays a key role in intensifying soil resource availability, regulating the functional evenness, abundance, and spatial distribution of soil microbial communities. PMID:27105275

  12. Exploring Gusev with MER A

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grin, E. A.; Cabrol, N. A.; Des Marais, D.; Farmer, J.; Greeley, R.; Carr, M.; Kramer, M.; Moore, J.; Sutter, B.; Fike, D.; Kuzmin, R.; Grant, F.; Barlow, N.; Newsom, H.; Tanaka, K.; Urquhart, M.; de Goursac, O.; Grisby, B.

    2002-12-01

    Gusev will be an outstanding candidate to achieve the 2003 MER mission goals. The crater has collected sediments from a diversity of parent rocks in the vast Maadim Vallis watershed over a period of three billion years. Because of the interaction between Gusev and Maadim, it has been proposed that a significant volume of the sedimentary material in the crater is of aqueous origin. Mars Odyssey has shown that the hydrogen abundance in the Gusev region is higher than average at corresponding latitudes. This observation could be consistent with a past long lived aqueous activity. The presence of aqueous material is central to the MER mission because it can provide clues about the past water history, climate changes, and the potential habitability of Mars. However, while Gusev is recognized as a primary site because of its past fluvio lacustrine activity, the geological diversity and history of its immediate surroundings makes it exceptional and provides the foundation for an exciting exploration leading to key discoveries. In addition to aqueous, many other processes can have contributed to the material in the crater basin: volcanic, Apollinaris patera is only 200 km away, aeolian, glacial, and global airfall processes. How to identify the signature of each process? What was their succession in time? Do we see the evolution from perennial to more episodic lakes? Do we see interaction between volcanic, glacial, aeolian and lacustrine processes? What was the recurrence of dry episodes? What type of measurements can provide a definitive answer for each of these questions in the 600 m traverse range that the rover will accomplish? What diversity can we also expect in this range? Finally, the uniqueness and potential of Gusev does not reside only in this exceptional diversity. As there is evidence for long lived lake episodes, Gusev also offers the unique possibility to study for the first time the results of the in situ formation of aqueous sediments and minerals in their

  13. Genetic analysis of transcriptional activation and repression in the Tn21 mer operon. [Bacteria

    SciTech Connect

    Ross, W.; Park, S.J.; Summers, A.O. )

    1989-07-01

    Transcription of the Tn21 mercury resistance operon (mer) is controlled by the toxic metal cation Hg(II). This control is mediated by the product of the merR gene, a 144-amino-acid protein which represses transcription of the structural genes (merTPCAD) in the absence of Hg(II) and activates transcription in the presence of Hg(II). We have used a mer-lac transcriptional fusion to obtain regulatory mutants in this metal-responsive system. Some mutants were defective in Hg(II)-induced activation while retaining repression function, others were defective in repression but not activation, and some had lost both functions. Mutations in three of the four cysteine residues of merR resulted in complete loss of Hg(II)-inducible activation but retention of the repressor function. Other lesions adjacent to or very near these cysteines exhibited severely reduced activation and also retained repressor function. There were two putative helix-turn-helix (HTH) domains in merR, and mutants in each had very different phenotypes. A partially dominant mutation in the more amino-terminal region of the two putative HTH regions resulted in loss of both activation and repression, consistent with a role for this region in DNA binding. Mutations in the more centrally located HTH region resulted only in loss of Hg(II)-induced activation. Lesions in the central and in the carboxy-terminal regions of merR exhibited both Hg(II)-independent and Hg(II)-dependent transcriptional activation. The sole cis-acting mutant obtained with this operon fusion strategy, a down-promoter mutation, lies in a highly conserved base in the -35 region of the merTPCAD promoter.

  14. Travelers' Health: MERS in the Arabian Peninsula

    MedlinePlus

    ... Zika risk at high elevations Find a Clinic Yellow Fever Vaccinations Clinics FAQ Disease Directory Resources Resources for ... ... found in people. Symptoms of MERS include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. CDC is working ...

  15. Factors affecting antimicrobial activity of MUC7 12-mer, a human salivary mucin-derived peptide

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Guo-Xian; Campagna, Alexander N; Bobek, Libuse A

    2007-01-01

    Background MUC7 12-mer (RKSYKCLHKRCR), a cationic antimicrobial peptide derived from the human low-molecular-weight salivary mucin MUC7, possesses potent antimicrobial activity in vitro. In order to evaluate the potential therapeutic application of the MUC7 12-mer, we examined the effects of mono- and divalent cations, EDTA, pH, and temperature on its antimicrobial activity. Methods Minimal Inhibitory Concentrations (MICs) were determined using a liquid growth inhibition assay in 96-well microtiter plates. MUC7 12-mer was added at concentrations of 1.56–50 μM. MICs were determined at three endpoints: MIC-0, MIC-1, and MIC-2 (the lowest drug concentration showing 10%, 25% and 50% of growth, respectively). To examine the effect of salts or EDTA, a checkerboard microdilution technique was used. Fractional inhibitory concentration index (FICi) was calculated on the basis of MIC-0. The viability of microbial cells treated with MUC7 12-mer in the presence of sodium or potassium was also determined by killing assay or flow cytometry. Results The MICs of MUC7 12-mer against organisms tested ranged from 6.25–50 μM. For C. albicans, antagonism (FICi 4.5) was observed for the combination of MUC7 12-mer and calcium; however, there was synergism (FICi 0.22) between MUC7 12-mer and EDTA, and the synergism was retained in the presence of calcium at its physiological concentration (1–2 mM). No antagonism but additivity or indifference (FICi 0.55–2.5) was observed for the combination of MUC7 12-mer and each K+, Na+, Mg2+, or Zn2+. MUC7 12-mer peptide (at 25 μM) also exerted killing activity in the presence of NaCl, (up to 25 mM for C. albicans and up to 150 mM for E. coli, a physiological concentration of sodium in the oral cavity and serum, respectively) and retained candidacidal activity in the presence of KCl (up to 40 mM). The peptide exhibited higher inhibitory activity against C. albicans at pH 7, 8, and 9 than at pH 5 and 6, and temperature up to 60°C did not

  16. Microbially mediated formation of a new REE enriched Mn-oxide, Ytterby mine, Sweden

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sjöberg, Susanne; Allard, Bert; Rattray, Jayne E.; Callac, Nolwenn; Skelton, Alasdair; Ivarsson, Magnus; Karlsson, Stefan; Sjöberg, Viktor; Dupraz, Christophe

    2016-04-01

    Characterization of a black substance seeping from fractured bedrock in a subterranean tunnel revealed a new, microbially mediated, secondary manganese oxide mineralisation, highly enriched in rare earth elements (REEs). This tunnel is dry and at shallow depth and was built to convert the former Ytterby mine, known for the discovery of yttrium (Y), scandium (Sc) and five rare earth elements, into a fuel deposit for the Swedish Armed Forces. As the type locality of these rare earth elements, the Ytterby mine gave its name to yttrium, ytterbium, erbium and terbium. Geochemical analysis shows that the substance is enriched in REEs with concentrations one to two orders of magnitude higher than the surrounding rocks. Elemental analysis and X-ray diffraction establish that the main component is a manganese oxide of the birnessite type (general formula: [Na,Ca]0.5[Mn(III),Mn(IV)]2O4xAq). There are also minor fractions of calcite, some other manganese oxides, feldspars, quartz and about 1% organic matter, but no iron oxides. Leaching studies (sequential and selective) were performed in order to establish how the minor components are associated with the matrix (in the lattice or merely adsorbed on the outer surface). It shows that the Ytterby birnessite contains about 1% REEs in the lattice, as well as calcium but no sodium. Formation of birnessite by manganese oxidizing bacteria is well-known (e.g. Tebo et al, 2004). Quantitative PCR shows that the total number of bacteria in the Ytterby substance is in the order 1010 cells per g substance while the water feeding the fracture has in the order of 106 cells per ml groundwater. qPCR data further confirm that manganese oxidizing microorganisms are present and that the abundance varies with the seasons. Analysis of the precipitated manganese using electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy shows that the substance is composed of two or more components, with one part having a biogenic signature. The occurrence of C31 to C35

  17. Early microbial translocation blockade reduces SIV-mediated inflammation and viral replication

    PubMed Central

    Kristoff, Jan; Haret-Richter, George; Ma, Dongzhu; Ribeiro, Ruy M.; Xu, Cuiling; Cornell, Elaine; Stock, Jennifer L.; He, Tianyu; Mobley, Adam D.; Ross, Samantha; Trichel, Anita; Wilson, Cara; Tracy, Russell; Landay, Alan; Apetrei, Cristian; Pandrea, Ivona

    2014-01-01

    Damage to the intestinal mucosa results in the translocation of microbes from the intestinal lumen into the circulation. Microbial translocation has been proposed to trigger immune activation, inflammation, and coagulopathy, all of which are key factors that drive HIV disease progression and non-HIV comorbidities; however, direct proof of a causal link is still lacking. Here, we have demonstrated that treatment of acutely SIV-infected pigtailed macaques with the drug sevelamer, which binds microbial lipopolysaccharide in the gut, dramatically reduces immune activation and inflammation and slightly reduces viral replication. Furthermore, sevelamer administration reduced coagulation biomarkers, confirming the contribution of microbial translocation in the development of cardiovascular comorbidities in SIV-infected nonhuman primates. Together, our data suggest that early control of microbial translocation may improve the outcome of HIV infection and limit noninfectious comorbidities associated with AIDS. PMID:24837437

  18. MICROBIALLY MEDIATED GROWTH SUPPRESSION AND DEATH OF SALMONELLA IN COMPOSTED SEWAGE SLUDGE

    EPA Science Inventory

    The role of compost microflora in the suppression of salmonella regrowth in composted sewage sludge was investigated. Microbial inhibition studies of salmonella growth were conducted on nutrient agar, in composts that had been subjected to different temperatures in compost piles,...

  19. Protective Effect of Intranasal Regimens Containing Peptidic Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus Fusion Inhibitor Against MERS-CoV Infection.

    PubMed

    Channappanavar, Rudragouda; Lu, Lu; Xia, Shuai; Du, Lanying; Meyerholz, David K; Perlman, Stanley; Jiang, Shibo

    2015-12-15

    To gain entry into the target cell, Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) coronavirus (MERS-CoV) uses its spike (S) protein S2 subunit to fuse with the plasma or endosomal membrane. Previous work identified a peptide derived from the heptad repeat (HR) 2 domain in S2 subunit, HR2P, which potently blocked MERS-CoV S protein-mediated membrane fusion. Here, we tested an HR2P analogue with improved pharmaceutical property, HR2P-M2, for its inhibitory activity against MERS-CoV infection in vitro and in vivo. HR2P-M2 was highly effective in inhibiting MERS-CoV S protein-mediated cell-cell fusion and infection by pseudoviruses expressing MERS-CoV S protein with or without mutation in the HR1 region. It interacted with the HR1 peptide to form stable α-helical complex and blocked six-helix bundle formation between the HR1 and HR2 domains in the viral S protein. Intranasally administered HR2P-M2 effectively protected adenovirus serotype-5-human dipeptidyl peptidase 4-transduced mice from infection by MERS-CoV strains with or without mutations in the HR1 region of S protein, with >1000-fold reduction of viral titers in lung, and the protection was enhanced by combining HR2P-M2 with interferon β. These results indicate that this combination regimen merits further development to prevent MERS in high-risk populations, including healthcare workers and patient family members, and to treat MERS-CoV-infected patients. PMID:26164863

  20. Concurrent Phosphorus Recovery and Energy Generation in Mediator-Less Dual Chamber Microbial Fuel Cells: Mechanisms and Influencing Factors

    PubMed Central

    Almatouq, Abdullah; Babatunde, Akintunde O.

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated the mechanism and key factors influencing concurrent phosphorus (P) recovery and energy generation in microbial fuel cells (MFC) during wastewater treatment. Using a mediator-less dual chamber microbial fuel cell operated for 120 days; P was shown to precipitate as struvite when ammonium and magnesium chloride solutions were added to the cathode chamber. Monitoring data for chemical oxygen demand (COD), pH, oxidation reduction potential (ORP) and aeration flow rate showed that a maximum 38% P recovery was achieved; and this corresponds to 1.5 g/L, pH > 8, −550 ± 10 mV and 50 mL/min respectively, for COD, pHcathode, ORP and cathode aeration flow rate. More importantly, COD and aeration flow rate were shown to be the key influencing factors for the P recovery and energy generation. Results further show that the maximum P recovery corresponds to 72 mW/m2 power density. However, the energy generated at maximum P recovery was not the optimum; this shows that whilst P recovery and energy generation can be concurrently achieved in a microbial fuel cell, neither can be at the optimal value. PMID:27043584

  1. Concurrent Phosphorus Recovery and Energy Generation in Mediator-Less Dual Chamber Microbial Fuel Cells: Mechanisms and Influencing Factors.

    PubMed

    Almatouq, Abdullah; Babatunde, Akintunde O

    2016-04-01

    This study investigated the mechanism and key factors influencing concurrent phosphorus (P) recovery and energy generation in microbial fuel cells (MFC) during wastewater treatment. Using a mediator-less dual chamber microbial fuel cell operated for 120 days; P was shown to precipitate as struvite when ammonium and magnesium chloride solutions were added to the cathode chamber. Monitoring data for chemical oxygen demand (COD), pH, oxidation reduction potential (ORP) and aeration flow rate showed that a maximum 38% P recovery was achieved; and this corresponds to 1.5 g/L, pH > 8, -550 ± 10 mV and 50 mL/min respectively, for COD, pH(cathode), ORP and cathode aeration flow rate. More importantly, COD and aeration flow rate were shown to be the key influencing factors for the P recovery and energy generation. Results further show that the maximum P recovery corresponds to 72 mW/m² power density. However, the energy generated at maximum P recovery was not the optimum; this shows that whilst P recovery and energy generation can be concurrently achieved in a microbial fuel cell, neither can be at the optimal value. PMID:27043584

  2. Engineered bidirectional communication mediates a consensus in a microbial biofilm consortium

    PubMed Central

    Brenner, Katie; Karig, David K.; Weiss, Ron; Arnold, Frances H.

    2007-01-01

    Microbial consortia form when multiple species colocalize and communally generate a function that none is capable of alone. Consortia abound in nature, and their cooperative metabolic activities influence everything from biodiversity in the global food chain to human weight gain. Here, we present an engineered consortium in which the microbial members communicate with each other and exhibit a “consensus” gene expression response. Two colocalized populations of Escherichia coli converse bidirectionally by exchanging acyl-homoserine lactone signals. The consortium generates the gene-expression response if and only if both populations are present at sufficient cell densities. Because neither population can respond without the other's signal, this consensus function can be considered a logical AND gate in which the inputs are cell populations. The microbial consensus consortium operates in diverse growth modes, including in a biofilm, where it sustains its response for several days. PMID:17959781

  3. Isotope evidence for the microbially mediated formation of elemental sulfur: A case study from Lake Peten Itza, Guatemala

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turchyn, A. V.; Bennett, V. A.; Hodell, D. A.

    2013-12-01

    Elemental, or native, sulfur nodules or veins can be formed during aqueous diagenesis and have been found in a range of natural environments, including lake sediments. What governs the formation of elemental sulfur remains enigmatic, although it is widely thought to be microbially-mediated. While most of the literature suggests elemental sulfur is formed by partial re-oxidation of hydrogen sulphide, elemental sulfur can also form during incomplete bacterial sulfate reduction or during aborted sulfur disproportionation. Lake Peten Itza, in Northern Guatemala, which was cored during the International Continental Drilling program in 2006, is one of the few places where elemental sulfur nodules are forming during microbial diagenesis today. Sulfur isotopes are strongly partitioned during bacterial sulfate reduction and the magnitude of the partitioning yields insight into the microbial reactions and environmental conditions. For example, sulfate reduction that terminates at elemental sulfur likely requires the use of the intracellular trithonite pathway, which may drive larger overall sulfur isotope fractionation between the precursor sulfate and the elemental sulfur product. Sulfur isotopes combined with oxygen isotopes in the precursor sulfate may provide even more information about microbial mechanisms. We present coupled pore fluid sulfate concentrations and sulfur and oxygen isotope measurements, as well as co-existing nodule sulfur isotopes from the Lake Peten Itza sediments. The δ34S of the nodules in the lake sediments ranges from +12 to -13‰, often within a single nodule. This suggests formation from an open system where sulfate is replenished by diffusion, as might be expected during pore fluid diagenesis. The δ34S of the pore fluid sulfate at the depth of nodule formation is between 50 and 60‰ (versus the precursor gypsum which is 17 to 18‰) suggesting a large sulfur isotope fractionation between sulfate and elemental sulfur (38 to 73‰). Pyrite was

  4. Temperature-mediated changes in microbial carbon use efficiency and 13C discrimination

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lehmeier, Christoph A.; Ballantyne, Ford, IV; Min, Kyungjin; Billings, Sharon A.

    2016-06-01

    Understanding how carbon dioxide (CO2) flux from ecosystems feeds back to climate warming depends in part on our ability to quantify the efficiency with which microorganisms convert organic carbon (C) into either biomass or CO2. Quantifying ecosystem-level respiratory CO2 losses often also requires assumptions about stable C isotope fractionations associated with the microbial transformation of organic substrates. However, the diversity of organic substrates' δ13C and the challenges of measuring microbial C use efficiency (CUE) in their natural environment fundamentally limit our ability to project ecosystem C budgets in a warming climate. Here, we quantify the effect of temperature on C fluxes during metabolic transformations of cellobiose, a common microbial substrate, by a cosmopolitan microorganism growing at a constant rate. Biomass C specific respiration rate increased by 250 % between 13 and 26.5 °C, decreasing CUE from 77 to 56 %. Biomass C specific respiration rate was positively correlated with an increase in respiratory 13C discrimination from 4.4 to 6.7 ‰ across the same temperature range. This first demonstration of a direct link between temperature, microbial CUE, and associated isotope fluxes provides a critical step towards understanding δ13C of respired CO2 at multiple scales, and towards a framework for predicting future ecosystem C fluxes.

  5. Temperature-mediated changes in microbial carbon use efficiency and 13C discrimination

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lehmeier, C. A.; Ballantyne, F., IV; Min, K.; Billings, S. A.

    2015-10-01

    Understanding how carbon dioxide (CO2) flux from soils feeds back to climate warming depends in part on our ability to quantify the efficiency with which microorganisms convert soil organic carbon (C) into either biomass or CO2. Quantifying ecosystem-level respiratory CO2 losses often also requires assumptions about stable C isotope fractionations associated with the microbial transformation of soil organic substrates. However, the diversity of organic substrates' δ13C and the challenges of measuring microbial C use efficiency (CUE) in soils fundamentally limit our ability to project soil, and thus ecosystem, C budgets in a warming climate. Here, we quantify the effect of temperature on C fluxes during metabolic transformations of cellobiose, a common microbial substrate, by a cosmopolitan soil microorganism growing at a constant rate. Specific respiration rate increased by 250 % between 13 and 26.5 °C, decreasing CUE from 77 to 56 %. Specific respiration rate was positively correlated with an increase in respiratory 13C discrimination from 4.4 to 6.7 ‰ across the same temperature range. This first demonstration of a direct link between temperature, microbial CUE and associated isotope fluxes provides a critical step towards understanding δ13C of respired CO2 at multiple scales, and towards a framework for predicting future soil C fluxes.

  6. Microbial Contamination of Ice Machines Is Mediated by Activated Charcoal Filtration Systems in a City Hospital.

    PubMed

    Yorioka, Katsuhiro; Oie, Shigeharu; Hayashi, Koji; Kimoto, Hiroo; Furukawa, Hiroyuki

    2016-06-01

    Although microbial contamination of ice machines has been reported, no previous study has addressed microbial contamination of ice produced by machines equipped with activated charcoal (AC) filters in hospitals. The aim of this study was to provide clinical data for evaluating AC filters to prevent microbial contamination of ice. We compared microbial contamination in ice samples produced by machines with (n = 20) and without an AC filter (n = 40) in Shunan City Shinnanyo Municipal Hospital. All samples from the ice machine equipped with an AC filter contained 10-116 CFUs/g of glucose nonfermenting gram-negative bacteria such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Chryseobacterium meningosepticum. No microorganisms were detected in samples from ice machines without AC filters. After the AC filter was removed from the ice machine that tested positive for Gram-negative bacteria, the ice was resampled (n = 20). Analysis found no contaminants. Ice machines equipped with AC filters pose a serious risk factor for ice contamination. New filter-use guidelines and regulations on bacterial detection limits to prevent contamination of ice in healthcare facilities are necessary. PMID:27348980

  7. Enhanced microbial decolorization of methyl red with oxidized carbon fiber as redox mediator.

    PubMed

    Emilia Rios-Del Toro, E; Celis, Lourdes B; Cervantes, Francisco J; Rangel-Mendez, J Rene

    2013-09-15

    The anaerobic degradation of azo dyes under anaerobic conditions is possible but at a slow rate. Redox mediators (quinones, activated carbon) are used to improve the reduction rate. The aim of this work was to use activated carbon fiber (ACF) as a redox mediator for the anaerobic reduction of the azo dye methyl red. ACF was chemically modified with 8M HNO₃ to increase its redox-mediating capacity and used in chemical and anaerobic biological batch assays for the reduction of methyl red. ACF increased its redox-mediating capacity up to 3-fold in chemical assays; in biological assays ACF increased the reduction rate up to 8-fold compared to controls without ACF. However, since the ACF served as support for biomass, a biofilm formed on the fiber significantly reduced its redox-mediating capacity; substrate consumption suggested that the electron transport from ACF to methyl red was the rate-limiting step in the process. These results are the first evidence of the role of ACF as a redox mediator in the reductive decolorization of methyl red, in addition to the effect of biofilm attached to ACF on methyl red reduction. Due to the versatile characteristics of ACF and its redox-mediating capacity, carbon fibers could be used in biological wastewater treatment systems to accelerate the reductive transformation of pollutants commonly found in industrial effluents. PMID:23892163

  8. Microbially Mediated Biodegradation of Hexahydro-1,3,5-Trinitro-1,3,5- Triazine by Extracellular Electron Shuttling Compounds

    PubMed Central

    Kwon, Man Jae; Finneran, Kevin T.

    2006-01-01

    The potential for humic substances to stimulate the reduction of hexahydro-1,3,5-trinitro-1,3,5-triazine (RDX) was investigated. This study describes a novel approach for the remediation of RDX-contaminated environments using microbially mediated electron shuttling. Incubations without cells demonstrated that reduced AQDS transfers electrons directly to RDX, which was reduced without significant accumulation of the nitroso intermediates. Three times as much reduced AQDS (molar basis) was needed to completely reduce RDX. The rate and extent of RDX reduction differed greatly among electron shuttle/acceptor amendments for resting cell suspensions of Geobacter metallireducens and G. sulfurreducens with acetate as the sole electron donor. AQDS and purified humic substances stimulated the fastest rate of RDX reduction. The nitroso metabolites did not significantly accumulate in the presence of AQDS or humic substances. RDX reduction in the presence of poorly crystalline Fe(III) was relatively slow and metabolites transiently accumulated. However, adding humic substances or AQDS to Fe(III)-containing incubations increased the reduction rates. Cells of G. metallireducens alone reduced RDX; however, the rate of RDX reduction was slow relative to AQDS-amended incubations. These data suggest that extracellular electron shuttle-mediated RDX transformation is not organism specific but rather is catalyzed by multiple Fe(III)- and humic-reducing species. Electron shuttle-mediated RDX reduction may eventually become a rapid and effective cleanup strategy in both Fe(III)-rich and Fe(III)-poor environments. PMID:16957213

  9. Microbially Mediated Transformations of Phosphorus in the Sea: New Views of an Old Cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karl, David M.

    2014-01-01

    Phosphorus (P) is a required element for life. Its various chemical forms are found throughout the lithosphere and hydrosphere, where they are acted on by numerous abiotic and biotic processes collectively referred to as the P cycle. In the sea, microorganisms are primarily responsible for P assimilation and remineralization, including recently discovered P reduction-oxidation bioenergetic processes that add new complexity to the marine microbial P cycle. Human-induced enhancement of the global P cycle via mining of phosphate-bearing rock will likely influence the pace of P-cycle dynamics, especially in coastal marine habitats. The inextricable link between the P cycle and cycles of other bioelements predicts future impacts on, for example, nitrogen fixation and carbon dioxide sequestration. Additional laboratory and field research is required to build a comprehensive understanding of the marine microbial P cycle.

  10. Plasmid-Mediated Bioaugmentation of Wastewater Microbial Communities in a Laboratory-Scale Bioreactor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bathe, Stephan; Hausner, Martina

    Xenobiotic degradation during biological wastewater treatment can be established or enhanced by bioaugmentation - the addition of biological agents carrying biodegradation genes required to perform the task. Whereas the addition of microbial cells carrying chromosomally encoded catabolic genes can be impaired by limited survival of the added microorganisms, the addition of donor organisms carrying a transmissible catabolic plasmid is a promising alternative. This plasmid can spread within the indigenous microbial community of the system, circumventing the need for extended survival of the introduced bacterial strain. Here we discuss how the catabolic plasmid pNB2 can be evaluated towards its potential to facilitate the degradation of a xenobiotic compound, 3-chloroaniline, and demonstrate the applicability of this plasmid to accomplish 3-chloroaniline degradation in a bioreactor setting after in situ transfer to suitable recipient strains.

  11. Microbially mediated transformations of phosphorus in the sea: new views of an old cycle.

    PubMed

    Karl, David M

    2014-01-01

    Phosphorus (P) is a required element for life. Its various chemical forms are found throughout the lithosphere and hydrosphere, where they are acted on by numerous abiotic and biotic processes collectively referred to as the P cycle. In the sea, microorganisms are primarily responsible for P assimilation and remineralization, including recently discovered P reduction-oxidation bioenergetic processes that add new complexity to the marine microbial P cycle. Human-induced enhancement of the global P cycle via mining of phosphate-bearing rock will likely influence the pace of P-cycle dynamics, especially in coastal marine habitats. The inextricable link between the P cycle and cycles of other bioelements predicts future impacts on, for example, nitrogen fixation and carbon dioxide sequestration. Additional laboratory and field research is required to build a comprehensive understanding of the marine microbial P cycle. PMID:24405427

  12. Autophagy Protein Rubicon Mediates Phagocytic NADPH Oxidase Activation in Response to Microbial Infection or TLR Stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Chul-Su; Lee, Jong-Soo; Rodgers, Mary; Min, Chan-Ki; Lee, June-Yong; Kim, Hee Jin; Lee, Kwang-Hoon; Kim, Chul-Joong; Oh, Byungha; Zandi, Ebrahim; Yue, Zhenyu; Kramnik, Igor; Liang, Chengyu; Jung, Jae U.

    2013-01-01

    Summary Phagocytosis and autophagy are two important and related arms of the host's first-line defense against microbial invasion. Rubicon is a RUN domain containing cysteine-rich protein that functions as part of a Beclin-1-Vps34-containing autophagy complex. We report that Rubicon is also an essential, positive regulator of the NADPH oxidase complex. Upon microbial infection or Toll-like-receptor 2 (TLR2) activation, Rubicon interacts with the p22phox subunit of the NADPH oxidase complex, facilitating its phagosomal trafficking to induce a burst of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and inflammatory cytokines. Consequently, ectopic expression or depletion of Rubicon profoundly affected ROS, inflammatory cytokine production, and subsequent antimicrobial activity. Rubicon's actions in autophagy and in the NADPH oxidase complex are functionally and genetically separable, indicating that Rubicon functions in two ancient innate immune machineries, autophagy and phagocytosis, depending on the environmental stimulus. Rubicon may thus be pivotal to generating an optimal intracellular immune response against microbial infection. PMID:22423966

  13. Microbial mediated retention/transformation of organic and inorganic materials in freshwater and marine ecosystems

    EPA Science Inventory

    Aquatic ecosystems are globally connected by hydrological and biogeochemical cycles. Microorganisms inhabiting aquatic ecosystems form the basis of food webs, mediate essential element cycles, decompose natural organic matter, transform inorganic nutrients and metals, and degrad...

  14. Potential MER Landing Site in Melas Chasma

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weitz, C. M.; Parker, Timothy J.; Anderson, F. Scott

    2001-01-01

    We have selected one area in Valles Marineris as a potential landing site for the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission. After 30 years of analyses, the formation of the Valles Marineris system of troughs and its associated deposits still remains an enigma. Understanding all aspects of the Valles Marineris would significantly contribute to deciphering the internal and external history of Mars. A landing site within Melas Chasma could provide insight into both the formation of Valles Marineris and the composition and origin of the interior layered deposits (ILDs). The ILDs have been proposed as: (1) sedimentary deposits formed in lakes mass wasted material from the walls; (3) remnants of the wall rock; (4) carbonate deposits; (5) aeolian deposits; and (6) volcanic. More recently, Malin and Edgett suggest that the fine-scale, rhythmic layering seen in the interior deposits, as well as other layered deposits in craters, supports a sedimentary origin. Because an understanding of the formation of Valles Marineris and its interior deposits is so important to deciphering the history of Mars, we have proposed a landing site for the MER mission on an exposure of interior deposits in western Melas Chasma. Either MER-A and MER-B could land at this same location.

  15. Targeting Axl and Mer kinases in cancer.

    PubMed

    Verma, Anupam; Warner, Steven L; Vankayalapati, Hariprasad; Bearss, David J; Sharma, Sunil

    2011-10-01

    Receptor tyrosine kinases (RTK) are cell-surface transmembrane receptors that contain regulated kinase activity within their cytoplasmic domain and play an important role in signal transduction in both normal and malignant cells. The mammalian TAM RTK family includes 3 closely related members: Tyro-3, Axl, and Mer. Overexpression or ectopic expression of the TAM receptors has been detected in a wide array of human cancers. Growth arrest-specific gene 6 has been identified as the major ligand for these TAM RTKs, and its binding to the receptors has been shown to promote proliferation and survival of cancer cells in vitro. Abnormal expression and activation of Axl or Mer can provide a survival advantage for certain cancer cells. Inhibition of Axl and Mer may enhance the sensitivity of cancer cells to cytotoxic agents and would potentially be a therapeutic strategy to target cancer cells. This review elucidates the role of Axl and Mer in normal cellular function and their role in oncogenesis. In addition, we review the potential to inhibit these RTKs for the development of therapeutic targets in treatment of cancer. PMID:21933973

  16. The MER/CIP Portal for Ground Operations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chan, Louise; Desai, Sanjay; DOrtenzio, Matthew; Filman, Robtert E.; Heher, Dennis M.; Hubbard, Kim; Johan, Sandra; Keely, Leslie; Magapu, Vish; Mak, Ronald

    2003-01-01

    We developed the Mars Exploration Rover/Collaborative Information Portal (MER/CIP) to facilitate MER operations. MER/CIP provides a centralized, one-stop delivery platform integrating science and engineering data from several distributed heterogeneous data sources. Key issues for MER/CIP include: 1) Scheduling and schedule reminders; 2) Tracking the status of daily predicted outputs; 3) Finding and analyzing data products; 4) Collaboration; 5) Announcements; 6) Personalization.

  17. Human Centered Design and Development for NASA's MerBoard

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Trimble, Jay

    2003-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation provides an overview of the design and development process for NASA's MerBoard. These devices are large interactive display screens which can be shown on the user's computer, which will allow scientists in many locations to interpret and evaluate mission data in real-time. These tools are scheduled to be used during the 2003 Mars Exploration Rover (MER) expeditions. Topics covered include: mission overview, Mer Human Centered Computers, FIDO 2001 observations and MerBoard prototypes.

  18. The effects of spatial structure, frequency dependence and resistance evolution on the dynamics of toxin-mediated microbial invasions

    PubMed Central

    Libberton, Ben; Horsburgh, Malcolm J; Brockhurst, Michael A

    2015-01-01

    Recent evidence suggests that interference competition between bacteria shapes the distribution of the opportunistic pathogen Staphylococcus aureus in the lower nasal airway of humans, either by preventing colonization or by driving displacement. This competition within the nasal microbial community would add to known host factors that affect colonization. We tested the role of toxin-mediated interference competition in both structured and unstructured environments, by culturing S. aureus with toxin-producing or nonproducing Staphylococcus epidermidis nasal isolates. Toxin-producing S. epidermidis invaded S. aureus populations more successfully than nonproducers, and invasion was promoted by spatial structure. Complete displacement of S. aureus was prevented by the evolution of toxin resistance. Conversely, toxin-producing S. epidermidis restricted S. aureus invasion. Invasion of toxin-producing S. epidermidis populations by S. aureus resulted from the evolution of toxin resistance, which was favoured by high initial frequency and low spatial structure. Enhanced toxin production also evolved in some invading populations of S. epidermidis. Toxin production therefore promoted invasion by, and constrained invasion into, populations of producers. Spatial structure enhanced both of these invasion effects. Our findings suggest that manipulation of the nasal microbial community could be used to limit colonization by S. aureus, which might limit transmission and infection rates. PMID:26240609

  19. Efficacy of natural biocide on control of microbial induced corrosion in oil pipelines mediated by Desulfovibrio vulgaris and Desulfovibrio gigas.

    PubMed

    Lavania, Meeta; Sarma, Priyangshu M; Mandal, Ajoy K; Cheema, Simrita; Lal, Banwari

    2011-01-01

    We compared the efficacy of a natural biocide with four chemical tetrakishydroxymethyl phosphonium sulfonate, benzyl trimethyl ammonium chloride, and formaldehyde, glutaraldehyde, to control microbial induced corrosion in oil pipelines. The efficacy of biocides were monitored against Desulfovibrio vulgaris and Desulfovibrio gigas in experimental pipes by measuring cell counts, H2S production, Fe(II) production, production of extracellular polymeric substances and structure of biofilm. The treatment with cow urine had minimum planktonic cell counts of 3 x 10(2) CFU/mL as well as biofilm cell counts of 9 x 10(1) CFU/mL as compared with tetrakishydroxyl methyl phosphonium sulfonate, benzyl trimethyl ammonium chloride, formaldehyde and glutaraldehyde. Sulfide production was the lowest with cow urine (0.08 mmol/L), followed by tetrakishydroxymethyl phosphonium sulfonate 0.72 mmol/L. On day 90 of treatment, Fe(II) production was also found to be the lowest with cow urine. The scanning electron microscopic studies indicated that the biofilm bacteria were killed by cow urine. These results demonstrate the cow urine mediated control of microbially induced corrosion, and this is indicative of its potential as a viable substitute of toxic biocides. To the best of our knowledge, this seems to be the first report which screens possible biocidal activity by cow urine as compared to the most common biocides which oil industry is currently using. PMID:22128548

  20. Interleukin 17 Regulates Mer Tyrosine Kinase–Positive Cells in Pseudomonas aeruginosa Keratitis

    PubMed Central

    Li, Cui; McClellan, Sharon A.; Barrett, Ronald; Hazlett, Linda D.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose. To determine if IL-17 regulates Mer tyrosine kinase–positive (MerTK+) cells in Pseudomonas aeruginosa keratitis. Methods. Interleukin 17 was tested in normal and infected cornea of susceptible C57BL/6 and resistant BALB/c mice. The latter were treated with recombinant mouse (rm) IL-17; both groups were treated with IL-17 neutralizing antibody. Mice were infected, and clinical score, PCR, ELISA, and myeloperoxidase (MPO) assays tested expression of proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory mediators and polymorphonuclear neutrophilic leukocyte (PMN) infiltrate. Fas and Fas ligand (FasL) protein levels were assessed in both mouse strains, while MerTK+ cells were examined by immunostaining and cell sorting before and after IL-17 neutralization. Results. The IL-17 mRNA and protein were higher in C57BL/6 versus BALB/c cornea after infection. The rmIL-17 treatment of BALB/c mice modified proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory mediators, but clinical score and MPO assay revealed no differences. However, only BALB/c mice treated with IL-17 neutralizing antibody showed increased disease, macrophage inflammatory protein (MIP) 2, and MPO levels. Fas and FasL protein levels, elevated earlier in BALB/c versus C57BL/6 mice, correlated with significantly more MerTK+ cells in BALB/c cornea at 3 days after infection. Neutralization of IL-17 in C57BL/6 mice elevated MerTK+ cells, while similar treatment of BALB/c mice significantly decreased them. Conclusions. These data provide evidence that IL-17 expression is higher in C57BL/6 versus BALB/c cornea after infection and that the latter group has more MerTK+ cells. Exogenous rmIL-17 failed to shift the disease response in resistant mice, but its neutralization resulted in worsened disease and reduced MerTK+ cells. Neutralization of IL-17 in C57BL/6 mice increased MerTK+ cells but did not dramatically shift the disease response. PMID:25298414

  1. Disentangling mechanisms that mediate the balance between stochastic and deterministic processes in microbial succession.

    PubMed

    Dini-Andreote, Francisco; Stegen, James C; van Elsas, Jan Dirk; Salles, Joana Falcão

    2015-03-17

    Ecological succession and the balance between stochastic and deterministic processes are two major themes within microbial ecology, but these conceptual domains have mostly developed independent of each other. Here we provide a framework that integrates shifts in community assembly processes with microbial primary succession to better understand mechanisms governing the stochastic/deterministic balance. Synthesizing previous work, we devised a conceptual model that links ecosystem development to alternative hypotheses related to shifts in ecological assembly processes. Conceptual model hypotheses were tested by coupling spatiotemporal data on soil bacterial communities with environmental conditions in a salt marsh chronosequence spanning 105 years of succession. Analyses within successional stages showed community composition to be initially governed by stochasticity, but as succession proceeded, there was a progressive increase in deterministic selection correlated with increasing sodium concentration. Analyses of community turnover among successional stages--which provide a larger spatiotemporal scale relative to within stage analyses--revealed that changes in the concentration of soil organic matter were the main predictor of the type and relative influence of determinism. Taken together, these results suggest scale-dependency in the mechanisms underlying selection. To better understand mechanisms governing these patterns, we developed an ecological simulation model that revealed how changes in selective environments cause shifts in the stochastic/deterministic balance. Finally, we propose an extended--and experimentally testable--conceptual model integrating ecological assembly processes with primary and secondary succession. This framework provides a priori hypotheses for future experiments, thereby facilitating a systematic approach to understand assembly and succession in microbial communities across ecosystems. PMID:25733885

  2. Disentangling mechanisms that mediate the balance between stochastic and deterministic processes in microbial succession

    PubMed Central

    Dini-Andreote, Francisco; Stegen, James C.; van Elsas, Jan Dirk; Salles, Joana Falcão

    2015-01-01

    Ecological succession and the balance between stochastic and deterministic processes are two major themes within microbial ecology, but these conceptual domains have mostly developed independent of each other. Here we provide a framework that integrates shifts in community assembly processes with microbial primary succession to better understand mechanisms governing the stochastic/deterministic balance. Synthesizing previous work, we devised a conceptual model that links ecosystem development to alternative hypotheses related to shifts in ecological assembly processes. Conceptual model hypotheses were tested by coupling spatiotemporal data on soil bacterial communities with environmental conditions in a salt marsh chronosequence spanning 105 years of succession. Analyses within successional stages showed community composition to be initially governed by stochasticity, but as succession proceeded, there was a progressive increase in deterministic selection correlated with increasing sodium concentration. Analyses of community turnover among successional stages—which provide a larger spatiotemporal scale relative to within stage analyses—revealed that changes in the concentration of soil organic matter were the main predictor of the type and relative influence of determinism. Taken together, these results suggest scale-dependency in the mechanisms underlying selection. To better understand mechanisms governing these patterns, we developed an ecological simulation model that revealed how changes in selective environments cause shifts in the stochastic/deterministic balance. Finally, we propose an extended—and experimentally testable—conceptual model integrating ecological assembly processes with primary and secondary succession. This framework provides a priori hypotheses for future experiments, thereby facilitating a systematic approach to understand assembly and succession in microbial communities across ecosystems. PMID:25733885

  3. Neutral red-mediated microbial electrosynthesis by Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and Zymomonas mobilis.

    PubMed

    Harrington, Timothy D; Mohamed, Abdelrhman; Tran, Vi N; Biria, Saeid; Gargouri, Mahmoud; Park, Jeong-Jin; Gang, David R; Beyenal, Haluk

    2015-11-01

    The aim of this work was to compare the effects of electrosynthesis on different bacterial species. The effects of neutral red-mediated electrosynthesis on the metabolite profiles of three microorganisms: Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and Zymomonas mobilis, were measured and compared and contrasted. A statistically comprehensive analysis of neutral red-mediated electrosynthesis is presented using the analysis of end-product profiles, current delivered, and changes in cellular protein expression. K. pneumoniae displayed the most dramatic response to electrosynthesis of the three bacteria, producing 93% more ethanol and 76% more lactate vs. control fermentation with no neutral red and no electron delivery. Z. mobilis showed no response to electrosynthesis except elevated acetate titers. Stoichiometric comparison showed that NAD(+) reduction by neutral red could not account for changes in metabolites during electrosynthesis. Neutral red-mediated electrosynthesis was shown to have multifarious effects on the three species. PMID:26096579

  4. Environmental Conditions Constrain the Distribution and Diversity of Archaeal merA in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, U.S.A.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wang, Y.; Boyd, E.; Crane, S.; Lu-Irving, P.; Krabbenhoft, D.; King, S.; Dighton, J.; Geesey, G.; Barkay, T.

    2011-01-01

    The distribution and phylogeny of extant protein-encoding genes recovered from geochemically diverse environments can provide insight into the physical and chemical parameters that led to the origin and which constrained the evolution of a functional process. Mercuric reductase (MerA) plays an integral role in mercury (Hg) biogeochemistry by catalyzing the transformation of Hg(II) to Hg(0). Putative merA sequences were amplified from DNA extracts of microbial communities associated with mats and sulfur precipitates from physicochemically diverse Hg-containing springs in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, using four PCR primer sets that were designed to capture the known diversity of merA. The recovery of novel and deeply rooted MerA lineages from these habitats supports previous evidence that indicates merA originated in a thermophilic environment. Generalized linear models indicate that the distribution of putative archaeal merA lineages was constrained by a combination of pH, dissolved organic carbon, dissolved total mercury and sulfide. The models failed to identify statistically well supported trends for the distribution of putative bacterial merA lineages as a function of these or other measured environmental variables, suggesting that these lineages were either influenced by environmental parameters not considered in the present study, or the bacterial primer sets were designed to target too broad of a class of genes which may have responded differently to environmental stimuli. The widespread occurrence of merA in the geothermal environments implies a prominent role for Hg detoxification in these environments. Moreover, the differences in the distribution of the merA genes amplified with the four merA primer sets suggests that the organisms putatively engaged in this activity have evolved to occupy different ecological niches within the geothermal gradient. ?? 2011 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

  5. Spectral induced polarization and electrodic potential monitoring of microbially mediated iron sulfide transformations

    SciTech Connect

    Hubbard, Susan; Personna, Y.R.; Ntarlagiannis, D.; Slater, L.; Yee, N.; O'Brien, M.; Hubbard, S.

    2008-02-15

    Stimulated sulfate-reduction is a bioremediation technique utilized for the sequestration of heavy metals in the subsurface.We performed laboratory column experiments to investigate the geoelectrical response of iron sulfide transformations by Desulfo vibriovulgaris. Two geoelectrical methods, (1) spectral induced polarization (SIP), and (2) electrodic potential measurements, were investigated. Aqueous geochemistry (sulfate, lactate, sulfide, and acetate), observations of precipitates (identified from electron microscopy as iron sulfide), and electrodic potentials on bisulfide ion (HS) sensitive silver-silver chloride (Ag-AgCl) electrodes (630 mV) were diagnostic of induced transitions between an aerobic iron sulfide forming conditions and aerobic conditions promoting iron sulfide dissolution. The SIP data showed 10m rad anomalies during iron sulfide mineralization accompanying microbial activity under an anaerobic transition. These anomalies disappeared during iron sulfide dissolution under the subsequent aerobic transition. SIP model parameters based on a Cole-Cole relaxation model of the polarization at the mineral-fluid interface were converted to (1) estimated biomineral surface area to pore volume (Sp), and (2) an equivalent polarizable sphere diameter (d) controlling the relaxation time. The temporal variation in these model parameters is consistent with filling and emptying of pores by iron sulfide biofilms, as the system transitions between anaerobic (pore filling) and aerobic (pore emptying) conditions. The results suggest that combined SIP and electrodic potential measurements might be used to monitor spatiotemporal variability in microbial iron sulfide transformations in the field.

  6. Spectral induced polarization and electrodic potential monitoring of microbially mediated iron sulfide transformations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Personna, Yves Robert; Ntarlagiannis, Dimitrios; Slater, Lee; Yee, Nathan; O'Brien, Michael; Hubbard, Susan

    2008-06-01

    Stimulated sulfate-reduction is a bioremediation technique utilized for the sequestration of heavy metals in the subsurface. We performed laboratory column experiments to investigate the geoelectrical response of iron sulfide transformations by Desulfovibrio vulgaris. Two geoelectrical methods, (1) spectral induced polarization (SIP), and (2) electrodic potential measurements, were investigated. Aqueous geochemistry (sulfate, lactate, sulfide, and acetate), observations of precipitates (identified from electron microscopy as iron sulfide), and electrodic potentials on bisulfide ion (HS-) sensitive silver-silver chloride (Ag-AgCl) electrodes (˜-630 mV) were diagnostic of induced transitions between anaerobic iron sulfide forming conditions and aerobic conditions promoting iron sulfide dissolution. The SIP data showed ˜10 mrad anomalies during iron sulfide mineralization accompanying microbial activity under an anaerobic transition. These anomalies disappeared during iron sulfide dissolution under the subsequent aerobic transition. SIP model parameters based on a Cole-Cole relaxation model of the polarization at the mineral-fluid interface were converted to (1) estimated biomineral surface area to pore volume (Sp), and (2) an equivalent polarizable sphere diameter (d) controlling the relaxation time. The temporal variation in these model parameters is consistent with filling and emptying of pores by iron sulfide biofilms, as the system transitions between anaerobic (pore filling) and aerobic (pore emptying) conditions. The results suggest that combined SIP and electrodic potential measurements might be used to monitor spatiotemporal variability in microbial iron sulfide transformations in the field.

  7. Nutrient Enrichment Mediates the Relationships of Soil Microbial Respiration with Climatic Factors in an Alpine Meadow

    PubMed Central

    Zong, Ning; Jiang, Jing; Shi, Peili; Song, Minghua; Shen, Zhenxi; Zhang, Xianzhou

    2015-01-01

    Quantifying the effects of nutrient additions on soil microbial respiration (Rm) and its contribution to soil respiration (Rs) are of great importance for accurate assessment ecosystem carbon (C) flux. Nitrogen (N) addition either alone (coded as LN and HN) or in combination with phosphorus (P) (coded as LN + P and HN + P) were manipulated in a semiarid alpine meadow on the Tibetan Plateau since 2008. Either LN or HN did not affect Rm, while LN + P enhanced Rm during peak growing periods, but HN + P did not affect Rm. Nutrient addition also significantly affected Rm/Rs, and the correlations of Rm/Rs with climatic factors varied with years. Soil water content (Sw) was the main factor controlling the variations of Rm/Rs. During the years with large rainfall variations, Rm/Rs was negatively correlated with Sw, while, in years with even rainfall, Rm/Rs was positively correlated with Sw. Meanwhile, in N + P treatments the controlling effects of climatic factors on Rm/Rs were more significant than those in CK. Our results indicate that the sensitivity of soil microbes to climatic factors is regulated by nutrient enrichment. The divergent effects of Sw on Rm/Rs suggest that precipitation distribution patterns are key factors controlling soil microbial activities and ecosystem C fluxes in semiarid alpine meadow ecosystems. PMID:26347902

  8. Evaluation of CO₂ solubility-trapping and mineral-trapping in microbial-mediated CO₂-brine-sandstone interaction.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Jing; Lu, Wei; Zhang, Fengjun; Lu, Cong; Du, Juanjuan; Zhu, Rongyue; Sun, Lei

    2014-08-15

    Evaluation of CO₂ solubility-trapping and mineral-trapping by microbial-mediated process was investigated by lab experiments in this study. The results verified that microbes could adapt and keep relatively high activity under extreme subsurface environment (pH<5, temperature>50 °C, salinity>1.0 mol/L). When microbes mediated in the CO₂-brine-sandstone interaction, the CO₂ solubility-trapping was enhanced. The more biomass of microbe added, the more amount of CO₂ dissolved and trapped into the water. Consequently, the corrosion of feldspars and clay minerals such as chlorite was improved in relative short-term CO₂-brine-sandstone interaction, providing a favorable condition for CO₂ mineral-trapping. Through SEM images and EDS analyses, secondary minerals such as transition-state calcite and crystal siderite were observed, further indicating that the microbes played a positive role in CO₂ mineral trapping. As such, bioaugmentation of indigenous microbes would be a promising technology to enhance the CO₂ capture and storage in such deep saline aquifer like Erdos, China. PMID:25015018

  9. Adenoma-linked barrier defects and microbial products drive IL-23/IL-17-mediated tumour growth

    PubMed Central

    Grivennikov, Sergei I.; Wang, Kepeng; Mucida, Daniel; Stewart, C. Andrew; Schnabl, Bernd; Jauch, Dominik; Taniguchi, Koji; Yu, Guann-Yi; Osterreicher, Christoph H.; Hung, Kenneth E.; Datz, Christian; Feng, Ying; Fearon, Eric R.; Oukka, Mohamed; Tessarollo, Lino; Coppola, Vincenzo; Yarovinsky, Felix; Cheroutre, Hilde; Eckmann, Lars; Trinchieri, Giorgio; Karin, Michael

    2013-01-01

    Approximately 2% of colorectal cancer is linked to pre-existing inflammation known as colitis-associated cancer, but most develops in patients without underlying inflammatory bowel disease. Colorectal cancer often follows a genetic pathway whereby loss of the adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) tumour suppressor and activation of β-catenin are followed by mutations in K-Ras, PIK3CA and TP53, as the tumour emerges and progresses1,2. Curiously, however, ‘inflammatory signature’ genes characteristic of colitis-associated cancer are also upregulated in colorectal cancer3,4. Further, like most solid tumours, colorectal cancer exhibits immune/inflammatory infiltrates5, referred to as ‘tumour elicited inflammation’6. Although infiltrating CD4+ TH1 cells and CD8+ cytotoxic T cells constitute a positive prognostic sign in colorectal cancer7,8, myeloid cells and T-helper interleukin (IL)-17-producing (TH17) cells promote tumorigenesis5,6, and a ‘TH17 expression signature’ in stage I/II colorectal cancer is associated with a drastic decrease in disease-free survival9. Despite its pathogenic importance, the mechanisms responsible for the appearance of tumour-elicited inflammation are poorly understood. Many epithelial cancers develop proximally to microbial communities, which are physically separated from immune cells by an epithelial barrier10. We investigated mechanisms responsible for tumour-elicited inflammation in a mouse model of colorectal tumorigenesis, which, like human colorectal cancer, exhibits upregulation of IL-23 and IL-17. Here we show that IL-23 signalling promotes tumour growth and progression, and development of a tumoural IL-17 response. IL-23 is mainly produced by tumour-associated myeloid cells that are likely to be activated by microbial products, which penetrate the tumours but not adjacent tissue. Both early and late colorectal neoplasms exhibit defective expression of several barrier proteins. We propose that barrier deterioration induced by

  10. Disentangling Mechanisms That Mediate the Balance Between Stochastic and Deterministic Processes in Microbial Succession

    SciTech Connect

    Dini-Andreote, Francisco; Stegen, James C.; van Elsas, Jan D.; Falcao Salles, Joana

    2015-03-17

    Despite growing recognition that deterministic and stochastic factors simultaneously influence bacterial communities, little is known about mechanisms shifting their relative importance. To better understand underlying mechanisms, we developed a conceptual model linking ecosystem development during primary succession to shifts in the stochastic/deterministic balance. To evaluate the conceptual model we coupled spatiotemporal data on soil bacterial communities with environmental conditions spanning 105 years of salt marsh development. At the local scale there was a progression from stochasticity to determinism due to Na accumulation with increasing ecosystem age, supporting a main element of the conceptual model. At the regional-scale, soil organic matter (SOM) governed the relative influence of stochasticity and the type of deterministic ecological selection, suggesting scale-dependency in how deterministic ecological selection is imposed. Analysis of a new ecological simulation model supported these conceptual inferences. Looking forward, we propose an extended conceptual model that integrates primary and secondary succession in microbial systems.

  11. Animal models for SARS and MERS coronaviruses

    PubMed Central

    Gretebeck, Lisa M; Subbarao, Kanta

    2015-01-01

    The emergence of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), two strains of animal coronaviruses that crossed the species barrier to infect and cause severe respiratory infections in humans within the last 12 years, have taught us that coronaviruses represent a global threat that does not recognize international borders. We can expect to see other novel coronaviruses emerge in the future. An ideal animal model should reflect the clinical signs, viral replication and pathology seen in humans. In this review, we present factors to consider in establishing an animal model for the study of novel coronaviruses and compare the different animal models that have been employed to study SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV. PMID:26184451

  12. Two Years Onboard the MER Opportunity Rover

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Estlin, Tara; Anderson, Robert C.; Bornstein, Benjamin; Burl, Michael; Castano, Rebecca; Gaines, Daniel; Judd, Michele; Thompson, David R.

    2012-01-01

    The Autonomous Exploration for Gathering Increased Science (AEGIS) system provides automated data collection for planetary rovers. AEGIS is currently being used onboard the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission's Opportunity to provide autonomous targeting of the MER Panoramic camera. Prior to AEGIS, targeted data was collected in a manual fashion where targets were manually identified in images transmitted to Earth and the rover had to remain in the same location for one to several communication cycles. AEGIS enables targeted data to be rapidly acquired with no delays for ground communication. Targets are selected by AEGIS through the use of onboard data analysis techniques that are guided by scientist-specified objectives. This paper provides an overview of the how AEGIS has been used on the Opportunity rover, focusing on usage that occurred during a 21 kilometer historic trek to the Mars Endeavour crater.

  13. Principles and applications of Ligation Mediated PCR methods for DNA-based typing of microbial organisms.

    PubMed

    Krawczyk, Beata; Kur, Józef; Stojowska-Swędrzyńska, Karolina; Śpibida, Marta

    2016-01-01

    A significant number of DNA-based techniques has been introduced into the field of microorganisms' characterization and taxonomy. These genomic fingerprinting methods were developed to detect DNA sequence polymorphisms by using general principles, such as restriction endonuclease analysis, molecular hybridization, and PCR amplification. In recent years, some alternative techniques based on ligation of oligonucleotide adapters before DNA amplification by PCR, known as Ligation-Mediated PCR methods (LM PCR), have been successfully applied for the typing of microorganisms below the species level. These molecular methods include: Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphism (AFLP), Amplification of DNA fragments Surrounding Rare Restriction Sites (ADSRRS), PCR Melting Profiles (PCR MP), Ligation Mediated PCR/Shifter (LM PCR/Shifter), Infrequent-Restriction-Site Amplification (IRS PCR), double digestion Ligation Mediated Suppression PCR (ddLMS PCR). These techniques are now applied more and more often because they involve less time, are comparably inexpensive, and require only standard lab equipment. Here, we present a general review of this group of methods showing their possibilities and limitations. We also identify questions and propose solutions which may be helpful in choosing a particular LM PCR method for the achievement of the required goal. PMID:26885774

  14. Barrier properties of k-mer packings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lebovka, N.; Khrapatiy, S.; Vygornitskyi; Pivovarova, N.

    2014-08-01

    This work discusses numerical studies of the barrier properties of k-mer packings by the Monte Carlo method. The studied variants of regular and non-regular arrangements on a square lattice included models of random sequential adsorption (RSA) and random deposition (RD). The discrete problem of diffusion through the bonds of a square lattice was considered. The k-mers were perfectly oriented perpendicular to the diffusion direction and blocked certain fraction of bonds fb against diffusion. The barrier efficiency was estimated by calculation of the ratio D/Do where D is diffusion coefficient in direction perpendicular to the orientation of k-mers and Do is the same value for diffusion on the square lattice without blocked bonds, i.e., at fb=0. The value of k varied from 1 to 512 and different lattice sizes up to L=8192 lattice units were used. For dense packings (p=1), the obtained D/Do versus fb dependences deviated from the theoretical prediction of effective medium (EM) theory and deviation was the most obvious for the regular non-staggered arrangement. For loose RSA and RD packings, the percolation like-behavior of D/Do with threshold at fb=p∞ was observed and the data evidenced that their barrier properties at large values of k may be more effective than those of some dense packings. Such anomalous behavior can reflect the details of k-mer spatial organization (aggregation) and structure of pores in RD and RSA packings. The contradictions between simulation data and predictions of EM theory were also discussed.

  15. Automated Targeting for the MER Rovers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Estlin, Tara; Castano, Rebecca; Anderson, Robert C.; Bornstein, Benjamin; Gaines, Daniel; de Granville, Charles; Thompson, David; Burl, Michael; Chien, Steve; Judd, Michele

    2009-01-01

    The Autonomous Exploration for Gathering Increased Science System (AEGIS) will soon provide automated targeting for remote sensing instruments on the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission, which currently which currently has two rovers exploring the surface of Mars. Currently, targets for rover remote-sensing instruments, especially narrow field-of-view instruments (such as the MER Mini- TES spectrometer or the 2011 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Mission ChemCam Spectrometer), must be selected manually based on imagery already on the ground with the operations team. AEGIS enables the rover flight software to analyze imagery onboard in order to autonomously select and sequence targeted remote-sensing observations in an opportunistic fashion. In this paper, we first provide some background information on the larger autonomous science framework in which AEGIS was developed. We then describe how AEGIS was specifically developed and tested on the JPL FIDO rover. Finally we discuss how AEGIS will be uploaded and used on the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission in early 2009.

  16. Distributed microbially- and chemically-mediated redox processes controlling arsenic dynamics within Mn-/Fe-oxide constructed aggregates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ying, Samantha C.; Masue-Slowey, Yoko; Kocar, Benjamin D.; Griffis, Sarah D.; Webb, Samuel; Marcus, Matthew A.; Francis, Christopher A.; Fendorf, Scott

    2013-03-01

    The aggregate-based structure of soils imparts physical heterogeneity that gives rise to variation in microbial and chemical processes which influence the speciation and retention of trace elements such as As. To examine the impact of distributed redox conditions on the fate of As in soils, we imposed various redox treatments upon constructed soil aggregates composed of ferrihydrite- and birnessite-coated sands presorbed with As(V) and inoculation with the dissimilatory metal reducing bacterium Shewanella sp. ANA-3. Aeration of the advecting solution surrounding the aggregates was varied to simulate environmental conditions. We find that diffusion-limited transport within high dissolved organic carbon environments allows reducing conditions to persist in the interior of aggregates despite aerated advecting external solutes, causing As, Mn, and Fe to migrate from the reduced aggregate interiors to the aerated exterior region. Upon transitioning to anoxic conditions in the external solutes, pulses of As, Mn and Fe are released into the advecting solution, while, conversely, a transition to aerated conditions in the exterior resulted in a cessation of As, Mn, and Fe release. Importantly, we find that As(III) oxidation by birnessite is appreciable only in the presence of O2; oxidation of As(III) to As(V) by Mn-oxides ceases under anaerobic conditions apparently as a result of microbially mediated Mn(IV/III) reduction. Our results demonstrate the importance of considering redox conditions and the physical complexity of soils in determining As dynamics, where redox transitions can either enhance or inhibit As release due to speciation shifts in both sorbents (solubilization versus precipitation of Fe and Mn oxides) and sorbates (As).

  17. B. subtilis GS67 protects C. elegans from Gram-positive pathogens via fengycin-mediated microbial antagonism.

    PubMed

    Iatsenko, Igor; Yim, Joshua J; Schroeder, Frank C; Sommer, Ralf J

    2014-11-17

    Studies on Caenorhabditis elegans have provided detailed insight into host-pathogen interactions. Usually, the E. coli strain OP50 is used as food source for laboratory studies, but recent work has shown that a variety of bacteria have dramatic effects on C. elegans physiology, including immune responses. However, the mechanisms by which different bacteria impact worm resistance to pathogens are poorly understood. Although pathogen-specific immune priming is often discussed as a mechanism underlying such observations, interspecies microbial antagonism might represent an alternative mode of action. Here, we use several natural Bacillus strains to study their effects on nematode survival upon pathogen challenge. We show that B. subtilis GS67 persists in the C. elegans intestine and increases worm resistance to Gram-positive pathogens, suggesting that direct inhibition of pathogens might be the primary protective mechanism. Indeed, chemical and genetic analyses identified the lipopeptide fengycin as the major inhibitory molecule produced by B. subtilis GS67. Specifically, a fengycin-defective mutant of B. subtilis GS67 lost inhibitory activity against pathogens and was unable to protect C. elegans from infections. Furthermore, we found that purified fengycin cures infected worms in a dose-dependent manner, indicating that it acts as an antibiotic. Our results reveal a molecular mechanism for commensal-mediated C. elegans protection and highlight the importance of interspecies microbial antagonism for the outcome of animal-pathogen interactions. Furthermore, our work strengthens C. elegans as an in vivo model to reveal protective mechanisms of commensal bacteria, including those relevant to mammalian hosts. PMID:25448001

  18. Reconstructing the Genetic Potential of the Microbially-Mediated Nitrogen Cycle in a Salt Marsh Ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Dini-Andreote, Francisco; Brossi, Maria Julia de L.; van Elsas, Jan Dirk; Salles, Joana F.

    2016-01-01

    Coastal ecosystems are considered buffer zones for the discharge of land-derived nutrients without accounting for potential negative side effects. Hence, there is an urgent need to better understand the ecological assembly and dynamics of the microorganisms that are involved in nitrogen (N) cycling in such systems. Here, we employed two complementary methodological approaches (i.e., shotgun metagenomics and quantitative PCR) to examine the distribution and abundance of selected microbial genes involved in N transformations. We used soil samples collected along a well-established pristine salt marsh soil chronosequence that spans over a century of ecosystem development at the island of Schiermonnikoog, The Netherlands. Across the examined soil successional stages, the structure of the populations of genes involved in N cycling processes was strongly related to (shifts in the) soil nitrogen levels (i.e., NO3−, NH4+), salinity and pH (explaining 73.8% of the total variation, R2 = 0.71). Quantification of the genes used as proxies for N fixation, nitrification and denitrification revealed clear successional signatures that corroborated the taxonomic assignments obtained by metagenomics. Notably, we found strong evidence for niche partitioning, as revealed by the abundance and distribution of marker genes for nitrification (ammonia-oxidizing bacteria and archaea) and denitrification (nitrite reductase nirK, nirS and nitrous oxide reductase nosZ clades I and II). This was supported by a distinct correlation between these genes and soil physico-chemical properties, such as soil physical structure, pH, salinity, organic matter, total N, NO3−, NH4+ and SO42−, across four seasonal samplings. Overall, this study sheds light on the successional trajectories of microbial N cycle genes along a naturally developing salt marsh ecosystem. The data obtained serve as a foundation to guide the formulation of ecological models that aim to effectively monitor and manage pristine

  19. Reconstructing the Genetic Potential of the Microbially-Mediated Nitrogen Cycle in a Salt Marsh Ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Dini-Andreote, Francisco; Brossi, Maria Julia de L; van Elsas, Jan Dirk; Salles, Joana F

    2016-01-01

    Coastal ecosystems are considered buffer zones for the discharge of land-derived nutrients without accounting for potential negative side effects. Hence, there is an urgent need to better understand the ecological assembly and dynamics of the microorganisms that are involved in nitrogen (N) cycling in such systems. Here, we employed two complementary methodological approaches (i.e., shotgun metagenomics and quantitative PCR) to examine the distribution and abundance of selected microbial genes involved in N transformations. We used soil samples collected along a well-established pristine salt marsh soil chronosequence that spans over a century of ecosystem development at the island of Schiermonnikoog, The Netherlands. Across the examined soil successional stages, the structure of the populations of genes involved in N cycling processes was strongly related to (shifts in the) soil nitrogen levels (i.e., [Formula: see text], [Formula: see text]), salinity and pH (explaining 73.8% of the total variation, R (2) = 0.71). Quantification of the genes used as proxies for N fixation, nitrification and denitrification revealed clear successional signatures that corroborated the taxonomic assignments obtained by metagenomics. Notably, we found strong evidence for niche partitioning, as revealed by the abundance and distribution of marker genes for nitrification (ammonia-oxidizing bacteria and archaea) and denitrification (nitrite reductase nirK, nirS and nitrous oxide reductase nosZ clades I and II). This was supported by a distinct correlation between these genes and soil physico-chemical properties, such as soil physical structure, pH, salinity, organic matter, total N, [Formula: see text], [Formula: see text] and [Formula: see text], across four seasonal samplings. Overall, this study sheds light on the successional trajectories of microbial N cycle genes along a naturally developing salt marsh ecosystem. The data obtained serve as a foundation to guide the formulation of

  20. Labile soil carbon inputs mediate the soil microbial community composition and plant residue decomposition rates

    SciTech Connect

    De Graaff, Marie-Anne; Classen, Aimee T; Castro Gonzalez, Hector F; Schadt, Christopher Warren

    2010-01-01

    Root carbon (C) inputs may regulate decomposition rates in soil, and in this study we ask: how do labile C inputs regulate decomposition of plant residues, and soil microbial communities? In a 14 d laboratory incubation, we added C compounds often found in root exudates in seven different concentrations (0, 0.7, 1.4, 3.6, 7.2, 14.4 and 21.7 mg C g{sup -1} soil) to soils amended with and without {sup 13}C-labeled plant residue. We measured CO{sub 2} respiration and shifts in relative fungal and bacterial rRNA gene copy numbers using quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). Increased labile C input enhanced total C respiration, but only addition of C at low concentrations (0.7 mg C g{sup -1}) stimulated plant residue decomposition (+2%). Intermediate concentrations (1.4, 3.6 mg C g{sup -1}) had no impact on plant residue decomposition, while greater concentrations of C (> 7.2 mg C g{sup -1}) reduced decomposition (-50%). Concurrently, high exudate concentrations (> 3.6 mg C g{sup -1}) increased fungal and bacterial gene copy numbers, whereas low exudate concentrations (< 3.6 mg C g{sup -1}) increased metabolic activity rather than gene copy numbers. These results underscore that labile soil C inputs can regulate decomposition of more recalcitrant soil C by controlling the activity and relative abundance of fungi and bacteria.

  1. Microbially mediated removal of organic sulfur from coal: Final technical report

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1988-05-01

    The goals of this project were to develop a microbial coal cleaning process capable of removing a significant fraction of the organic sulfur from coal by optimization of desulfurization using CB1, development of additional microorganisms capable of removing other organic sulfur forms from coal, and to evaluate combined desulfurization using CB1 and CBX to decrease organic sulfur in coal. Optimization studies defined more precisely the conditions required to achieve maximum desulfurization of coal by CB1. No significant differences in desulfurization were noted when coal was ground in a dry mill or in a stirred (wet) ball mill. Desulfurization increased with decreasing particle size. Solids loadings were not found to be limiting when the optimal particle size, retention time and microorganism-to-coal dose were used. The minimum retention time and microbe-to-coal ratios resulting in maximum sulfur removal were determined. A second microorganism, CB2, was selected and characterized. CB2 is capable of removing sulfur from the aryl sulfide model compound, diphenyl sulfide (DPS). Combining the activity of CB1 and CB2 for desulfurization of coals was investigated. The sulfur removing activity(ies) for each microbe was (were) determined to reside in the chromosomal DNA rather than in extrachromosomal, plasmid DNA. Simultaneous growth of the microorganisms for treatment of coal, simultaneous treatment of coal using microbes grown separately, and sequential treatment of coal were investigated. 11 refs., 13 figs., 57 tabs.

  2. Metalloregulatory DNA-Binding Protein Encoded by the merR Gene: Isolation and Characterization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Halloran, Thomas; Walsh, Christopher

    1987-01-01

    The MerR protein mediates the induction of the mercury resistance phenotype in bacteria; it has been isolated in order to study the effects of metal-ion induced changes in the metabolism of prokaryotic cells at the molecular level. After DNA sequences responsible for negative autoregulation were removed, the 16-kilodalton protein was overproduced and purified to more than 90 percent homogeneity by a salt extraction procedure that yields about 5 milligrams of protein per gram of cells. Complementation data, amino terminal analysis, gel filtration, and deoxyribonuclease I protection studies demonstrate that the purified merR gene product is a dimer under nondenaturing conditions and that it binds specifically to DNA, in the presence and absence of mercury, at a palindromic site which is directly between the -10 and -35 regions of the structural genes and adjacent to its own promoter. These initial results indicate that MerR is a DNA-binding metalloregulatory protein that plays a central role in this heavy metal responsive system and they delineate an operator site in the mer operon.

  3. Acceleration of Microbially Mediated U(VI) Reduction at a Uranium Mill Tailings Site, Colorado Plateau

    SciTech Connect

    Phil Long; Todd Anderson; Aaron Peacock; Steve Heald; Yun-Juan Chang; Dick Dayvault; Derek R. Lovley; C.T. Resch; Helen Vrionis; Irene Ortiz-Bernad; D.C. White

    2004-03-17

    A second field-scale electron donor amendment experiment was conducted in 2003 at the Old Rifle Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) site in Rifle, Colorado. The objective of the 2003 experiment (done in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Energy's UMTRA Groundwater Project) was to test the hypothesis that amendment of increased concentration of electron donor would result in an increased export of electron donor down gradient which in turn would create a larger zone of down-gradient U(VI) bioreduction sustained over a longer time period relative to the 2002 experiment (Anderson et al. 2003). During the first experiment (2002), {approx}3 mM acetate was amended to subsurface over a period of 3 months in a 15m by 18m by 2.5m volume comprised of 3 upgradient monitoring wells, 20 injection wells, and 15 down-gradient monitoring wells. After an initial one-month phase of metal reduction, bioavailable oxidized Fe was consumed near the injection gallery and the dominant terminal electron accepting process became sulfate reduction, rapidly consuming the injected acetate. For the 2003 experiment, we amended sufficient acetate ({approx}10 mM) to consume available sulfate and export acetate down-gradient where bioavailable oxidized Fe was still present. Data from the experiment indicate that acetate was exported further down gradient, resulting in a larger zone of microbial U(VI) reduction than for the 2002 experiment. Geohydrologic, geochemical, and microbiological data collected during the course of both experiments enable assessment of relative importance of a number of factors controlling the experimental outcomes. Companion posters by Anderson et al. and White et al. provide additional results.

  4. Microbially mediated sulphide production in a thermal, acidic algal mat community in Yellowstone National Park.

    PubMed

    Ferris, Michael J; Magnuson, Timothy S; Fagg, Jennifer A; Thar, Roland; Kühl, Michael; Sheehan, Kathy B; Henson, Joan M

    2003-10-01

    Our objective in this study was to characterize prokaryotic sulphide production within the oxygenic, predominantly eukaryotic algal mat in an acidic stream, Nymph Creek, in Yellowstone National Park (YNP). We used microsensors to examine fluctuations in H2S and O2 concentrations over time through the vertical aspect of the approximately 3 mm mat in a 46-48 degrees C region of the creek. We also used analyses of PCR-amplified 16S rRNA gene sequences obtained from denaturing gradient gels, and PCR-amplified sequences of a functional gene associated with microbial sulphate respiration (dsrA) to characterize the bacterial community in the same region of the mat. During midday, photosynthesis rates were high within the first 500 micro m interval of the mat and high oxygen concentrations (600% air saturation) penetrated deeply (>1800 micro m) into the mat. During early evening and night, oxygen concentrations within the first 1100 micro m of the mat decreased over time from 60% air saturation (a.s) to 12% a.s. A precipitous decline in oxygen concentration occurred at a depth of 1100 micro m in all night measurements and anoxic conditions were present below 1200 micro m. Within this anoxic region, sulphide concentrations increased from nearly 0 micro M at 1200 micro m depth to 100 micro M at 2400 micro m depth. Enrichment cultures inoculated with Nymph Creek mat organisms also produced H2S. Sequence analyses of 16S rRNA and dsrA genes indicated the presence of at least five bacterial genera including species involved in dissimilative sulphate or sulphur reduction. PMID:14510849

  5. Flow-through Column Experiments and Modeling of Microbially Mediated Cr(VI) Reduction at Hanford 100H

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, L.; Molins, S.; Beller, H. R.; Brodie, E. L.; Steefel, C.; Nico, P. S.; Han, R.

    2010-12-01

    Microbially mediated Cr(VI) reduction at the Hanford 100H area was investigated by flow-through column experiments. Three separate experiments were conducted to promote microbial activities associated with denitrification, iron and sulfate reduction, respectively. Replicate columns packed with natural sediments from the site under anaerobic environment were injected with 5mM Lactate as the electron donor and 5 μM Cr(VI) in all experiments. Sulfate and nitrate solutions were added to act as the main electron acceptors in the respective experiments, while iron columns relied on the indigenous sediment iron (and manganese) oxides as electron acceptors. Column effluent solutions were analyzed by IC and ICP-MS to monitor the microbial consumption/conversion of lactate and the associated Cr(VI) reduction. Biogeochemical reactive transport modeling was performed to gain further insights into the reaction mechanisms and Cr(VI) bioreduction rates. All experimental columns showed a reduction of the injected Cr(VI). Columns under denitrifying conditions showed the least Cr(VI) reduction at early stages (<60 days) compared to columns run under other experimental conditions, but became more active over time, and ultimately showed the most consistent Cr(VI) reduction. A strong correlation between denitrification and Cr(VI) reduction processes was observed and was in agreement with the results obtained in batch experiments with a denitrifying bacterium isolated from the Hanford site. The accumulation of nitrite does not appear to have an adverse effect on Cr(VI) reduction rates. Reactive transport simulations indicated that biomass growth completely depleted influent ammonium, and called for an additional source of N to account for the measured reduction rates. Iron columns were the least active with undetectable consumption of the injected lactate, slowest cell growth, and the smallest change in Cr(VI) concentrations during the course of the experiment. In contrast, columns

  6. Reactive Transport Modeling of Microbially-Mediated Chromate Reduction in 1-D Soil Columns

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qiu, H.; Viamajala, S.; Alam, M. M.; Peyton, B. M.; Petersen, J. N.; Yonge, D. R.

    2002-12-01

    Cr(VI) reduction tests were performed with the well known metal reducing bacterium Shewanella oneidensis MR-1 in liquid phase batch reactors and continuous flow soil columns under anaerobic conditions. In the batch tests, the cultures were grown with fumarate as the terminal electron acceptor and lactate as the electron donor in a simulated groundwater medium to determine yield coefficients and specific growth rates. The bench-scale soil column experiments were carried out with MR-1 to test the hypothesis that the kinetic parameters obtained in batch studies, combined with microbial attachment /detachment processes, will accurately predict reactive transport of Cr(VI) during bacterial Cr(VI) reduction in a soil matrix. Cr(VI)-free simulated groundwater media containing fumarate as the limiting substrate and lactate was supplied to a 2.1cm (ID) x 15 cm soil column inoculated with MR-1 for a duration of 9 residence times to allow for biomass to build-up in the column. Thereafter the column was supplied with both Cr(VI) and substrate. The concentrations of effluent substrate, biomass and Cr(VI) were monitored on a periodic basis and attached biomass in the column was measured in the termination of each column test. A reactive transport model was developed in which 6 governing equations deal with Cr(VI) bioreaction, fumarate (as electron donor) consumption, aqueous biomass growth and transport, solid biomass detachment and attachment kinetics, aqueous and solid phase enzyme reaction and transport, respectively. The model incorporating the enzyme reaction kinetics for Cr(VI) reduction, Monod kinetic expressions for substrate depletion, nonlinear attachment and detachment kinetics for aqueous and solid phase microorganism concentration, was solved by a fully implicit, finite-difference procedure using RT3D (A Modular Computer Code for Reactive Multi-species Transport in 3-Dimensional Groundwater Systems) platform in one dimension. Cr(VI)-free column data was used to

  7. The goblet cell-derived mediator RELM-β drives spontaneous colitis in Muc2-deficient mice by promoting commensal microbial dysbiosis.

    PubMed

    Morampudi, V; Dalwadi, U; Bhinder, G; Sham, H P; Gill, S K; Chan, J; Bergstrom, K S B; Huang, T; Ma, C; Jacobson, K; Gibson, D L; Vallance, B A

    2016-09-01

    Intestinal goblet cells are potentially key players in controlling susceptibility to ulcerative colitis (UC). Although impaired mucin (Muc2) production by goblet cells increases microbial stimulation of the colonic mucosa, goblet cells secrete other mediators that may influence or promote UC development. Correspondingly, Muc2-deficient ((-/-)) mice develop spontaneous colitis, concurrent with the dramatic upregulation of the goblet cell mediator, resistin-like molecule-beta (RELM-β). Testing RELM-β's role, we generated Muc2(-/-)/Retnlb(-/-) mice, finding that RELM-β deficiency significantly attenuated colitis development and symptoms compared with Muc2(-/-) mice. RELM-β expression in Muc2(-/-) mice strongly induced the production/secretion of the antimicrobial lectin RegIIIβ, that exerted its microbicidal effect predominantly on Gram-positive Lactobacillus species. Compared with Muc2(-/-)/Retnlb(-/-) mice, this worsened intestinal microbial dysbiosis with a selective loss of colonic Lactobacilli spp. in Muc2(-/-) mice. Orally replenishing Muc2(-/-) mice with murine Lactobacillus spp., but not with a probiotic formulation containing several human Lactobacillus spp. (VSL#3), ameliorated their spontaneous colitis in concert with increased production of short-chain fatty acids. These studies demonstrate that the goblet cell mediator RELM-β drives colitis in Muc2(-/-) mice by depleting protective commensal microbes. The ability of selective commensal microbial replacement to ameliorate colitis suggests that personalized bacterial therapy may prove beneficial for treatment of UC. PMID:26813339

  8. Managing PV Power on Mars - MER Rovers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stella, Paul M.; Chin, Keith; Wood, Eric; Herman, Jennifer; Ewell, Richard

    2009-01-01

    The MER Rovers have recently completed over 5 years of operation! This is a remarkable demonstration of the capabilities of PV power on the Martian surface. The extended mission required the development of an efficient process to predict the power available to the rovers on a day-to-day basis. The performance of the MER solar arrays is quite unlike that of any other Space array and perhaps more akin to Terrestrial PV operation, although even severe by that comparison. The impact of unpredictable factors, such as atmospheric conditions and dust accumulation (and removal) on the panels limits the accurate prediction of array power to short time spans. Based on the above, it is clear that long term power predictions are not sufficiently accurate to allow for detailed long term planning. Instead, the power assessment is essentially a daily activity, effectively resetting the boundary points for the overall predictive power model. A typical analysis begins with the importing of the telemetry from each rover's previous day's power subsystem activities. This includes the array power generated, battery state-of-charge, rover power loads, and rover orientation, all as functions of time. The predicted performance for that day is compared to the actual performance to identify the extent of any differences. The model is then corrected for these changes. Details of JPL's MER power analysis procedure are presented, including the description of steps needed to provide the final prediction for the mission planners. A dust cleaning event of the solar array is also highlighted to illustrate the impact of Martian weather on solar array performance

  9. Microbially-mediated Iron Dissolution and the Potential for Radionuclide Redistribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lack, J. G.; Maldonado, D.; Rivere, T.; Forsythe, J.; Boukhalfa, H.; Ruggiero, C.; Neu, M.; Traina, S.; Hersman, L.

    2003-12-01

    Investigation into microbial iron dissolution and the effects on radionuclides associated with Fe-containing minerals is of significant importance in determining the distribution and fate of actinides (e.g. uranium, plutonium, neptunium) in contaminated environments. Nearly all microorganisms have a metabolic requirement for iron at ~10-7 M for growth and survival. Iron, while abundant, only has a solubility product in the range of 10-39 to 10-44 M Fe that limits its available concentration in the environment to ~10-17 M. Thus, microorganisms are faced with a discrepancy of ~10 orders of magnitude to overcome in acquiring Fe needed for growth. Experiments were performed with two ubiquitous aerobic Pseudomonads (Pseudomonas mendocina and P. putida) to determine their ability to grow on iron-deficient media utilizing insoluble Fe-oxides as well as soluble Fe as their iron sources. Bacterial growth was observed indicating that the bacteria are actively sequestering Fe from the minerals via dissolution mechanism(s). Moreover, different pathways of dissolution used in obtaining iron from different Fe-oxides (ferrihydrite, goethite, and hematite) were quantified by determining siderophore production - an average of ~4-6 x 10-13 mmol x cell-1 when the cells were grown on either of the three minerals studied, while as expected much more siderophore was generated on a per cell basis in the no Fe control, ~15-16 x 10-13 mmol x cell-1, and much less in the readily accessible soluble Fe control (FeEDTA), ~1.5 x 10-13 mmol x cell-1; and reductant production - an average of about ~1-4 x 10-18 mol x cell-1 both cell associated and in the supernatant for hematite, goethite, and FeEDTA, while the cells grown on ferrihydrite produced a much greater amount of reductant per cell, ~14-26 x 10-18 mol x cell-1 and the no Fe control ~6-9 x 10-18 mol x cell-1. These studies of different dissolution mechanisms are not only significant from a geomicrobial view on iron distribution and

  10. Microbially mediated reductive dechlorination of weathered polychlorinated dibenzofurans in Kymijoki sediment mesocosms.

    PubMed

    Liu, Hui; Park, Joong-Wook; Fennell, Donna E; Rodenburg, Lisa A; Verta, Matti; Häggblom, Max M

    2013-04-01

    Little is known about the potential for indigenous microorganisms to reductively dechlorinate weathered polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (PCDDs) and dibenzofurans (PCDFs) in contaminated sediments. The sediments of River Kymijoki, Finland are heavily contaminated with PCDFs originating from manufacture of the chlorophenol-based fungicide Ky-5. Reductive dechlorination of weathered PCDFs was monitored to examine strategies for stimulating such activities. Amendments with electron donors, a halogenated co-substrate (tetrachlorobenzene, TeCBz), and bioaugmentation with a mixed culture containing Dehalococcoides mccartyi strain 195 were used to stimulate dechlorination activity in 30 L River Kymijoki sediment mesocosms incubated from 18 °C to 21 °C. An initial onset of dechlorination of octa-, hepta- and hexa-CDFs was observed in all mesocosms in the first 2 years of incubation. During this initial 2-year period, the decrease in the mol% contribution of these PCDFs was coupled with an increase in the mol% contribution of tetra- and penta-CDFs. The ratio of 1,2,3,4,6,7,8- to 1,2,3,4,6,8,9-hepta-CDF increased significantly. Subtle differences were observed between amended and unamended mesocosms. For penta-CDFs, a decreasing mol% ratio of peri vs. total chlorines and increasing mol% ratio of lateral vs. total chlorines was observed in mesocosms amended with TeCBz, suggesting that the amendments may affect pathways of dechlorination. Analysis of congener patterns using principal components analysis supported the observation that dechlorination was most pronounced during the first 2 years. Polymerase chain reaction and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (PCR-DGGE) analysis of 16S rRNA genes revealed a diverse Chloroflexi community. This study showed evidence for dechlorination of weathered PCDFs in Kymijoki sediment mesocosms mediated by indigenous microorganisms. PMID:23360748

  11. PEDF and 34-mer inhibit angiogenesis in the heart by inducing tip cells apoptosis via up-regulating PPAR-γ to increase surface FasL.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hao; Wei, Tengteng; Jiang, Xia; Li, Zhimin; Cui, Huazhu; Pan, Jiajun; Zhuang, Wei; Sun, Teng; Liu, Zhiwei; Zhang, Zhongming; Dong, Hongyan

    2016-01-01

    Pigment epithelial-derived factor (PEDF) is a potent anti-angiogenic factor whose effects are partially mediated through the induction of endothelial cell apoptosis. However, the underlying mechanism for PEDF and the functional PEDF peptides 34-mer and 44-mer to inhibit angiogenesis in the heart has not been fully established. In the present study, by constructing adult Sprague-Dawley rat models of acute myocardial infarction (AMI) and in vitro myocardial angiogenesis, we showed that PEDF and 34-mer markedly inhibits angiogenesis by selectively inducing tip cells apoptosis rather than quiescent cells. Peptide 44-mer on the other hand exhibits no such effects. Next, we identified Fas death pathway as essential downstream regulators of PEDF and 34-mer activities in inhibiting angiogenesis. By using peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPAR-γ) siRNA and PPAR-γ inhibitor, GW9662, we found the effects of PEDF and 34-mer were extensively blocked. These data suggest that PEDF and 34-mer inhibit angiogenesis via inducing tip cells apoptosis at least by means of up-regulating PPAR-γ to increase surface FasL in the ischemic heart, which might be a novel mechanism to understanding cardiac angiogenesis after AMI. PMID:26519036

  12. MERS coronavirus: data gaps for laboratory preparedness.

    PubMed

    de Sousa, Rita; Reusken, Chantal; Koopmans, Marion

    2014-01-01

    Since the emergence of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in 2012, many questions remain on modes of transmission and sources of virus. In outbreak situations, especially with emerging organisms causing severe human disease, it is important to understand the full spectrum of disease, and shedding kinetics in relation to infectivity and the ability to transmit the microorganism. Laboratory response capacity during the early stages of an outbreak focuses on development of virological and immunological methods for patient diagnosis, for contact tracing, and for epidemiological studies into sources, modes of transmission, identification of risk groups, and animal reservoirs. However, optimal use of this core public health laboratory capacity requires a fundamental understanding of kinetics of viral shedding and antibody response, of assay validation and of interpretation of test outcomes. We reviewed available data from MERS-CoV case reports, and compared this with data on kinetics of shedding and immune response from published literature on other human coronaviruses (hCoVs). We identify and discuss important data gaps, and biases that limit the laboratory preparedness to this novel disease. Public health management will benefit from standardised reporting of methods used, details of test outcomes by sample type, sampling date, in relation to symptoms and risk factors, along with the currently reported demographic, clinical and epidemiological findings. PMID:24286807

  13. Science Activity Planner for the MER Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Norris, Jeffrey S.; Crockett, Thomas M.; Fox, Jason M.; Joswig, Joseph C.; Powell, Mark W.; Shams, Khawaja S.; Torres, Recaredo J.; Wallick, Michael N.; Mittman, David S.

    2008-01-01

    The Maestro Science Activity Planner is a computer program that assists human users in planning operations of the Mars Explorer Rover (MER) mission and visualizing scientific data returned from the MER rovers. Relative to its predecessors, this program is more powerful and easier to use. This program is built on the Java Eclipse open-source platform around a Web-browser-based user-interface paradigm to provide an intuitive user interface to Mars rovers and landers. This program affords a combination of advanced display and simulation capabilities. For example, a map view of terrain can be generated from images acquired by the High Resolution Imaging Science Explorer instrument aboard the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft and overlaid with images from a navigation camera (more precisely, a stereoscopic pair of cameras) aboard a rover, and an interactive, annotated rover traverse path can be incorporated into the overlay. It is also possible to construct an overhead perspective mosaic image of terrain from navigation-camera images. This program can be adapted to similar use on other outer-space missions and is potentially adaptable to numerous terrestrial applications involving analysis of data, operations of robots, and planning of such operations for acquisition of scientific data.

  14. NT-38MerTK AS A TARGET IN GLIOBLASTOMA

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Jing; Huey, Lauren; Bash, Ryan E.; Cohen, Stephanie M.; Ewend, Matthew G.; Wang, Xiaodong; Graham, Douglas K.; Frye, Stephen V.; Earp, H. Shelton; Miller, C. Ryan

    2014-01-01

    Glioma-associated macrophages and microglia (GIM) are infiltrating immune cells that modulate the glioblastoma (GBM) micro-environment. Pharmacological targeting of GIM represents a promising therapeutic strategy. MerTK receptor tyrosine kinase triggers macrophage ingestion of apoptotic material and polarizes macrophages to an M2-like, immunosuppressive phenotype that promotes tumor growth. In addition, aberrant MerTK expression in GBM tumor cells can provide pro-survival, pro-invasion and chemo-resistance signals. We examined MerTK expression by double immunofluorescence (IF) in 40 human GBM. Both GFAP+ tumor cells and CD68+ GIM expressed MerTK. Quantification in 12 matched pairs of newly-diagnosed and recurrent GBM showed a 5.5-fold increase in MerTK/CD68+ macrophages (p = 0.002), but no consistent changes in MerTK/GFAP+ tumor cells upon recurrence. Next, we examined the efficacy of a novel UNC-developed small molecule MerTK inhibitor (MerTKI) in a genetically engineered orthotopic allograft model of GBM (TRP). GBM were established for 7 days upon stereotactic injection of luciferase-expressing TRP cells into syngeneic, immune-competent mice. Mice (N = 10-12/group) were then randomized to receive no treatment, daily MerTKI (65mg/kg p.o.), or MerTKI plus fractionated radiation (XRT, 5 Gy q.o.d x3). Median survival was 24, 22, and 41.5 days, respectively (p = 0.003), while historical survival of TRP allograft mice treated with XRT alone was 30 days. Bioluminescence imaging (BLI) showed a significant growth delay in MerTKI + XRT-treated mice (doubling time 14 versus 4-4.5 days, p < 0.0001). Two mice remain alive after 50 days of combination treatment and tumor growth remains stable with 90-99% reduction in pre-treatment BLI. Post-mortem histology and IF are pending. These results suggest that both human GBM tumor cells and GIM express MerTK and that MerTK+ GIM may increase upon disease recurrence. MerTK inhibition in an immune-competent pre-clinical model may

  15. Characteristics and Kinetic Analysis of AQS Transformation and Microbial Goethite Reduction:Insight into “Redox mediator-Microbe-Iron oxide” Interaction Process

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Weihuang; Shi, Mengran; Yu, Dan; Liu, Chongxuan; Huang, Tinglin; Wu, Fengchang

    2016-01-01

    The characteristics and kinetics of redox transformation of a redox mediator, anthraquinone-2-sulfonate (AQS), during microbial goethite reduction by Shewanella decolorationis S12, a dissimilatory iron reduction bacterium (DIRB), were investigated to provide insights into “redox mediator-iron oxide” interaction in the presence of DIRB. Two pre-incubation reaction systems of the “strain S12- goethite” and the “strain S12-AQS” were used to investigate the dynamics of goethite reduction and AQS redox transformation. Results show that the concentrations of goethite and redox mediator, and the inoculation cell density all affect the characteristics of microbial goethite reduction, kinetic transformation between oxidized and reduced species of the redox mediator. Both abiotic and biotic reactions and their coupling regulate the kinetic process for “Quinone-Iron” interaction in the presence of DIRB. Our results provide some new insights into the characteristics and mechanisms of interaction among “quinone-DIRB- goethite” under biotic/abiotic driven. PMID:27020166

  16. Characteristics and Kinetic Analysis of AQS Transformation and Microbial Goethite Reduction:Insight into “Redox mediator-Microbe-Iron oxide” Interaction Process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Weihuang; Shi, Mengran; Yu, Dan; Liu, Chongxuan; Huang, Tinglin; Wu, Fengchang

    2016-03-01

    The characteristics and kinetics of redox transformation of a redox mediator, anthraquinone-2-sulfonate (AQS), during microbial goethite reduction by Shewanella decolorationis S12, a dissimilatory iron reduction bacterium (DIRB), were investigated to provide insights into “redox mediator-iron oxide” interaction in the presence of DIRB. Two pre-incubation reaction systems of the “strain S12- goethite” and the “strain S12-AQS” were used to investigate the dynamics of goethite reduction and AQS redox transformation. Results show that the concentrations of goethite and redox mediator, and the inoculation cell density all affect the characteristics of microbial goethite reduction, kinetic transformation between oxidized and reduced species of the redox mediator. Both abiotic and biotic reactions and their coupling regulate the kinetic process for “Quinone-Iron” interaction in the presence of DIRB. Our results provide some new insights into the characteristics and mechanisms of interaction among “quinone-DIRB- goethite” under biotic/abiotic driven.

  17. Microbially-mediated thiocyanate oxidation and manganese cycling control arsenic mobility in groundwater at an Australian gold mine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horvath, A. S.; Baldisimo, J. G.; Moreau, J. W.

    2010-12-01

    Arsenic contamination of groundwater poses a serious environmental and human health problem in many regions around the world. Historical groundwater chemistry data for a Western-Central Victorian gold mine (Australia) revealed a strong inverse correlation between dissolved thiocyanate and iron(II), supporting the interpretation that oxidation of thiocyanate, a major groundwater contaminant by-product of cyanide-based gold leaching, was coupled to reductive dissolution of iron ox(yhydrox)ides in tailings dam sediments. Microbial growth was observed in this study in a selective medium using SCN- as the sole carbon and nitrogen source. The potential for use of SCN- as a tracer of mining contamination in groundwater was evaluated in the context of biological SCN- oxidation potential in the aquifer. Geochemical data also revealed a high positive correlation between dissolved arsenic and manganese, indicating that sorption on manganese-oxides most likely controls arsenic mobility at this site. Samples of groundwater and sediments along a roughly straight SW-NE traverse away from a large mine tailings storage facility, and parallel to the major groundwater flow direction, were analysed for major ions and trace metals. Groundwater from wells approaching the tailings along this traverse showed a nearly five-fold increase (roughly 25-125 ppb) in dissolved arsenic concentrations relative to aqueous Mn(II) concentrations. Thus, equivalent amounts of dissolved manganese released a five-fold difference in the amount of adsorbed arsenic. The interpretation that reductive dissolution of As-bearing MnO2 at the mine site has been mediated by groundwater (or aquifer) microorganisms is consistent with our recovery of synthetic birnessite-reducing enrichment cultures that were inoculated with As-contaminated groundwaters.

  18. High abundances of viruses in a deep-sea hydrothermal vent system indicates viral mediated microbial mortality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ortmann, Alice C.; Suttle, Curtis A.

    2005-08-01

    Little is known about the distribution and abundance of viruses at deep-sea hydrothermal vents. Based on estimates made using epifluorescence microscopy and the dye YoPro-1, much higher viral abundances were observed at active hydrothermal vents than in the surrounding deep sea. This indicates that viral production was occurring and that viruses were a source of microbial mortality. Samples collected from three actively venting sites (Clam Bed, S&M and Salut) within the Endeavour Ridge system off the west coast of North America had viral abundances ranging from 1.45×10 5 to 9.90×10 7 ml -1, while the abundances of prokaryotes ranged from 1.30×10 5 to 4.46×10 6 ml -1. The abundances of viruses and prokaryotes in samples collected along the neutrally buoyant plume associated with the Main Endeavour Field were lower than at actively venting sites, with a mean of 5.3×10 5 prokaryotes ml -1 (s.d. 2.9×10 5, n=64) and 3.50×10 6 viruses ml -1 (s.d. 1.89×10 6, n=64), but were higher than non-plume samples (2.7×10 5 prokaryotes ml -1, s.d. 5.0×10 4, n=15 and 2.94×10 6 viruses ml -1, s.d. 1.08×10 6, n=15). Prokaryotic and viral abundances in non-hydrothermal regions were as much as 10-fold higher than found in previous studies, in which sample fixation likely resulted in underestimates. This suggests that viral infection may be a greater source of prokaryotic mortality throughout the deep sea than previously recognized. Overall, our results indicate that virus-mediated mortality of prokaryotes at these hydrothermal-vent environments is significant and may reduce energy flow to higher trophic levels.

  19. The effect of salinity, redox mediators and temperature on anaerobic biodegradation of petroleum hydrocarbons in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Adelaja, Oluwaseun; Keshavarz, Tajalli; Kyazze, Godfrey

    2015-01-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) need to be robust if they are to be applied in the field for bioremediation. This study investigated the effect of temperature (20-50°C), salinity (0.5-2.5% (w/v) as sodium chloride), the use of redox mediators (riboflavin and anthraquinone-2-sulphonate, AQS) and prolonged fed-batch operation (60 days) on biodegradation of a petroleum hydrocarbon mix (i.e. phenanthrene and benzene) in MFCs. The performance criteria were degradation efficiency, % COD removal and electrochemical performance. Good electrochemical and degradation performance were maintained up to a salinity of 1.5% (w/v) but deteriorated by 35-fold and 4-fold respectively as salinity was raised to 2.5%w/v. Degradation rates and maximum power density were both improved by approximately 2-fold at 40°C compared to MFC performance at 30°C but decreased sharply by 4-fold when operating temperature was raised to 50°C. The optimum reactor performance obtained at 40°C was 1.15 mW/m(2) maximum power density, 89.1% COD removal and a degradation efficiency of 97.10%; at moderately saline (1% w/v) conditions the maximum power density was 1.06 mW/m(2), 79.1% COD removal and 91.6% degradation efficiency. This work suggests the possible application of MFC technology in the effective treatment of petroleum hydrocarbons contaminated site and refinery effluents. PMID:25279757

  20. KAnalyze: a fast versatile pipelined K-mer toolkit

    PubMed Central

    Audano, Peter; Vannberg, Fredrik

    2014-01-01

    Motivation: Converting nucleotide sequences into short overlapping fragments of uniform length, k-mers, is a common step in many bioinformatics applications. While existing software packages count k-mers, few are optimized for speed, offer an application programming interface (API), a graphical interface or contain features that make it extensible and maintainable. We designed KAnalyze to compete with the fastest k-mer counters, to produce reliable output and to support future development efforts through well-architected, documented and testable code. Currently, KAnalyze can output k-mer counts in a sorted tab-delimited file or stream k-mers as they are read. KAnalyze can process large datasets with 2 GB of memory. This project is implemented in Java 7, and the command line interface (CLI) is designed to integrate into pipelines written in any language. Results: As a k-mer counter, KAnalyze outperforms Jellyfish, DSK and a pipeline built on Perl and Linux utilities. Through extensive unit and system testing, we have verified that KAnalyze produces the correct k-mer counts over multiple datasets and k-mer sizes. Availability and implementation: KAnalyze is available on SourceForge: https://sourceforge.net/projects/kanalyze/ Contact: fredrik.vannberg@biology.gatech.edu Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:24642064

  1. Genomic DNA k-mer Spectra: Models and Modalities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chor, Benny; Horn, David; Goldman, Nick; Levy, Yaron; Massingham, Tim

    Background: The empirical frequencies of DNA k-mers in whole genome sequences provide an interesting perspective on genomic complexity, and the availability of large segments of genomic sequence from many organisms means that analysis of k-mers with non-trivial lengths is now possible.

  2. NFκB p50-CCAAT/Enhancer-binding Protein β (C/EBPβ)-mediated Transcriptional Repression of MicroRNA let-7i following Microbial Infection*

    PubMed Central

    O'Hara, Steven P.; Splinter, Patrick L.; Gajdos, Gabriella B.; Trussoni, Christy E.; Fernandez-Zapico, Martin E.; Chen, Xian-Ming; LaRusso, Nicholas F.

    2010-01-01

    MicroRNAs, central players of numerous cellular processes, regulate mRNA stability or translational efficiency. Although these molecular events are established, the mechanisms regulating microRNA function and expression remain largely unknown. The microRNA let-7i regulates Toll-like receptor 4 expression. Here, we identify a novel transcriptional mechanism induced by the protozoan parasite Cryptosporidium parvum and Gram(−) bacteria-derived lipopolysaccharide (LPS) mediating let-7i promoter silencing in human biliary epithelial cells (cholangiocytes). Using cultured cholangiocytes, we show that microbial stimulus decreased let-7i expression, and promoter activity. Analysis of the mechanism revealed that microbial infection promotes the formation of a NFκB p50-C/EBPβ silencer complex in the regulatory sequence. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assays (ChIP) demonstrated that the repressor complex binds to the let-7i promoter following microbial stimulus and promotes histone-H3 deacetylation. Our results provide a novel mechanism of transcriptional regulation of cholangiocyte let-7i expression following microbial insult, a process with potential implications for epithelial innate immune responses in general. PMID:19903813

  3. Engineering MerR for Sequestration and MerA for Reduction of Toxic Metals and Radionuclides

    SciTech Connect

    Anne O. Summers

    2008-12-15

    The objectives of this project were (1) to alter a metalloregulatory protein (MerR) so that it would bind other toxic metals or radionuclides with similar affinity so that the engineered protein itself and/or bacteria expressing it could be deployed in the environment to specifically sequester such metals and (2) to alter the mercuric reductase, MerA, to reduce radionuclides and render them less mobile. Both projects had a basic science component. In the first case, such information about MerR illuminates how proteins discriminate very similar metals/elements. In the second case, information about MerA reveals the criteria for transmission of reducing equivalents from NADPH to redox-active metals. The work involved genetic engineering of all or parts of both proteins and examination of their resultant properties both in vivo and in vitro, the latter with biochemical and biophysical tools including equilibrium and non-equilibrium dialysis, XAFS, NMR, x-ray crystallography, and titration calorimetry. We defined the basis for metal specificity in MerR, devised a bacterial strain that sequesters Hg while growing, characterized gold reduction by MerA and the role of the metallochaperone domain of MerA, and determined the 3-D structure of MerB, the organomercurial lyase.

  4. The Ames MER microscopic imager toolkit

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sargent, R.; Deans, Matthew; Kunz, C.; Sims, M.; Herkenhoff, K.

    2005-01-01

    12The Mars Exploration Rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, have spent several successful months on Mars, returning gigabytes of images and spectral data to scientists on Earth. One of the instruments on the MER rovers, the Athena Microscopic Imager (MI), is a fixed focus, megapixel camera providing a ??3mm depth of field and a 31??31mm field of view at a working distance of 63 mm from the lens to the object being imaged. In order to maximize the science return from this instrument, we developed the Ames MI Toolkit and supported its use during the primary mission. The MI Toolkit is a set of programs that operate on collections of MI images, with the goal of making the data more understandable to the scientists on the ground. Because of the limited depth of field of the camera, and the often highly variable topography of the terrain being imaged, MI images of a given rock are often taken as a stack, with the Instrument Deployment Device (IDD) moving along a computed normal vector, pausing every few millimeters for the MI to acquire an image. The MI Toolkit provides image registration and focal section merging, which combine these images to form a single, maximally in-focus image, while compensating for changes in lighting as well as parallax due to the motion of the camera. The MI Toolkit also provides a 3-D reconstruction of the surface being imaged using stereo and can embed 2-D MI images as texture maps into 3-D meshes produced by other imagers on board the rover to provide context. The 2-D images and 3-D meshes output from the Toolkit are easily viewed by scientists using other mission tools, such as Viz or the MI Browser.This paper describes the MI Toolkit in detail, as well as our experience using it with scientists at JPL during the primary MER mission. ?? 2005 IEEE.

  5. The Ames MER Microscopic Imager Toolkit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sargent, Randy; Deans, Matthew; Kunz, Clayton; Sims, Michael; Herkenhoff, Ken

    2005-01-01

    The Mars Exploration Rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, have spent several successful months on Mars, returning gigabytes of images and spectral data to scientists on Earth. One of the instruments on the MER rovers, the Athena Microscopic Imager (MI), is a fixed focus, megapixel camera providing a plus or minus mm depth of field and a 3lx31mm field of view at a working distance of 63 mm from the lens to the object being imaged. In order to maximize the science return from this instrument, we developed the Ames MI Toolkit and supported its use during the primary mission. The MI Toolkit is a set of programs that operate on collections of MI images, with the goal of making the data more understandable to the scientists on the ground. Because of the limited depth of field of the camera, and the often highly variable topography of the terrain being imaged, MI images of a given rock are often taken as a stack, with the Instrument Deployment Device (IDD) moving along a computed normal vector, pausing every few millimeters for the MI to acquire an image. The MI Toolkit provides image registration and focal section merging, which combine these images to form a single, maximally in-focus image, while compensating for changes in lighting as well as parallax due to the motion of the camera. The MI Toolkit also provides a 3-D reconstruction of the surface being imaged using stereo and can embed 2-D MI images as texture maps into 3-D meshes produced by other imagers on board the rover to provide context. The 2-D images and 3-D meshes output from the Toolkit are easily viewed by scientists using other mission tools, such as Viz or the MI Browser. This paper describes the MI Toolkit in detail, as well as our experience using it with scientists at JPL during the primary MER mission.

  6. mer [Römer, Roemer], Ole [Olaf] Christensen (1644-1710)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    Born in Aarhus, Denmark, studied at the University of Copenhagen under Thomas and Erasmus Bartholin, who gave him TYCHO BRAHE's manuscripts to edit and his own daughter to wed. Rømer accompanied Bartholin and JEAN PICARD to Hven to measure the position of Tycho's observatory, the better to reduce Tycho's observations. He went on to the Paris Observatory where he made and used instruments for the ...

  7. Distinct Immune Response in Two MERS-CoV-Infected Patients: Can We Go from Bench to Bedside?

    PubMed Central

    Goffard, Anne; Fournier, Clement; Kipnis, Eric; Titecat, Marie; Bortolotti, Perinne; Martinez, Laura; Dubucquoi, Sylvain; Dessein, Rodrigue; Gosset, Philippe; Mathieu, Daniel; Guery, Benoit

    2014-01-01

    One year after the occurrence of the first case of infection by the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) there is no clear consensus on the best treatment to propose. The World Health Organization, as well as several other national agencies, are still working on different clinical approaches to implement the most relevant treatment in MERS-CoV infection. We compared innate and adaptive immune responses of two patients infected with MERS-CoV to understand the underlying mechanisms involved in the response and propose potential therapeutic approaches. Broncho-alveolar lavage (BAL) of the first week and sera of the first month from the two patients were used in this study. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qRTPCR) was performed after extraction of RNA from BAL cells of MERS-CoV infected patients and control patients. BAL supernatants and sera were used to assess cytokines and chemokines secretion by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The first patient died rapidly after 3 weeks in the intensive care unit, the second patient still recovers from infection. The patient with a poor outcome (patient 1), compared to patient 2, did not promote type-1 Interferon (IFN), and particularly IFNα, in response to double stranded RNA (dsRNA) from MERS-CoV. The absence of IFNα, known to promote antigen presentation in response to viruses, impairs the development of a robust antiviral adaptive Th-1 immune response. This response is mediated by IL-12 and IFNγ that decreases viral clearance; levels of both of these mediators were decreased in patient 1. Finally, we confirm previous in vitro findings that MERS-CoV can drive IL-17 production in humans. Host recognition of viral dsRNA determines outcome in the early stage of MERS-CoV infection. We highlight the critical role of IFNα in this initial stage to orchestrate a robust immune response and bring substantial arguments for the indication of early IFNα treatment during MERS-CoV infection. PMID:24551142

  8. Recombination spot identification Based on gapped k-mers

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Rong; Xu, Yong; Liu, Bin

    2016-01-01

    Recombination is crucial for biological evolution, which provides many new combinations of genetic diversity. Accurate identification of recombination spots is useful for DNA function study. To improve the prediction accuracy, researchers have proposed several computational methods for recombination spot identification. The k-mer feature is one of the most useful features for modeling the properties and function of DNA sequences. However, it suffers from the inherent limitation. If the value of word length k is large, the occurrences of k-mers are closed to a binary variable, with a few k-mers present once and most k-mers are absent. This usually causes the sparse problem and reduces the classification accuracy. To solve this problem, we add gaps into k-mer and introduce a new feature called gapped k-mer (GKM) for identification of recombination spots. By using this feature, we present a new predictor called SVM-GKM, which combines the gapped k-mers and Support Vector Machine (SVM) for recombination spot identification. Experimental results on a widely used benchmark dataset show that SVM-GKM outperforms other highly related predictors. Therefore, SVM-GKM would be a powerful predictor for computational genomics. PMID:27030570

  9. Recombination spot identification Based on gapped k-mers.

    PubMed

    Wang, Rong; Xu, Yong; Liu, Bin

    2016-01-01

    Recombination is crucial for biological evolution, which provides many new combinations of genetic diversity. Accurate identification of recombination spots is useful for DNA function study. To improve the prediction accuracy, researchers have proposed several computational methods for recombination spot identification. The k-mer feature is one of the most useful features for modeling the properties and function of DNA sequences. However, it suffers from the inherent limitation. If the value of word length k is large, the occurrences of k-mers are closed to a binary variable, with a few k-mers present once and most k-mers are absent. This usually causes the sparse problem and reduces the classification accuracy. To solve this problem, we add gaps into k-mer and introduce a new feature called gapped k-mer (GKM) for identification of recombination spots. By using this feature, we present a new predictor called SVM-GKM, which combines the gapped k-mers and Support Vector Machine (SVM) for recombination spot identification. Experimental results on a widely used benchmark dataset show that SVM-GKM outperforms other highly related predictors. Therefore, SVM-GKM would be a powerful predictor for computational genomics. PMID:27030570

  10. Understanding M-ligand bonding and mer-/fac-isomerism in tris(8-hydroxyquinolinate) metallic complexes.

    PubMed

    Lima, Carlos F R A C; Taveira, Ricardo J S; Costa, José C S; Fernandes, Ana M; Melo, André; Silva, Artur M S; Santos, Luís M N B F

    2016-06-28

    Tris(8-hydroxyquinolinate) metallic complexes, Mq3, are one of the most important classes of organic semiconductor materials. Herein, the nature of the chemical bond in Mq3 complexes and its implications on their molecular properties were investigated by a combined experimental and computational approach. Various Mq3 complexes, resulting from the alteration of the metal and substitution of the 8-hydroxyquinoline ligand in different positions, were prepared. The mer-/fac-isomerism in Mq3 was explored by FTIR and NMR spectroscopy, evidencing that, irrespective of the substituent, mer- and fac-are the most stable molecular configurations of Al(iii) and In(iii) complexes, respectively. The relative M-ligand bond dissociation energies were evaluated experimentally by electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry (ESI-MS-MS), showing a non-monotonous variation along the group (Al > In > Ga). The results reveal a strong covalent character in M-ligand bonding, which allows for through-ligand electron delocalization, and explain the preferred molecular structures of Mq3 complexes as resulting from the interplay between bonding and steric factors. The mer-isomer reduces intraligand repulsions, being preferred for smaller metals, while the fac-isomer is favoured for larger metals where stronger covalent M-ligand bonds can be formed due to more extensive through-ligand conjugation mediated by metal "d" orbitals. PMID:27273193

  11. Monoclonal Antibody Shows Promise as Potential Therapeutic for MERS | Poster

    Cancer.gov

    A monoclonal antibody has proven effective in preventing Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) in lab animals, suggesting further development as a potential intervention for the deadly disease in humans, according to new research. MERS is a newly emerged coronavirus first detected in humans in 2012. Most cases have occurred in the Middle East, but the disease has appeared elsewhere. In all, MERS has infected more than 1,700 individuals and killed more than 600, according to the World Health Organization. No vaccines or antiviral therapies currently exist. Several candidate vaccines are being developed, and some have been tested in animal models, a prerequisite to human clinical trials.

  12. MGS and Odyssey - relay satellites for the MER mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Esposito, Pasquale B.; Bhat, R.; Demeak, S.; Ardalan, S.; Breeden, J.; Helfrich, C.; Jefferson, D.; Stauch, J.

    2004-01-01

    Both Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) and Odyssey are currently in low altitude, nearly circular and highly inclined orbits about Mars. Thus, they are available adn compartible to serve as relay satellites for the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) mission. Consequently, the MER project developed requirements for MGS to be overhead for MER-A (Spirit) at Gusev crater, at maximum elevation, mudway between lander separation and initial touchdown; in time, this was specified as 01/04/04. 04:24:55 UTC/SCET with a 30 sec tolerance.

  13. Soils containing 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin: aspects of their microbial activity and the potential for their microbially-mediated decontamination

    SciTech Connect

    Arthur, M.F.

    1987-01-01

    Three soils from Missouri and a soil from New Jersey, containing between 0.008 and 26.3 ug/g of 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD), were examined for microbial activity; the Missouri soils were also monitored for TCDD biodegradation. The objective was to simulate TCDD biodegradation by the indigenous microflora in order to develop a cost-effective method to decontaminate soils in situ. Microbial activity in TCDD soils was examined by enumeration of aerobic eutrophic and oligotrophic bacteria, actinomycetes, and fungi; determination of soil enzyme activity, including dehydrogenase, acid and alkaline phosphatase, arylsulfatase, and rhodanese; and measurement of soil respiration. The Missouri soils were subsequently amended with fertilizer, /sup 14/C-TCDD and a TCDD-solubilizing nonionic surfactant in order to improve the availability of TCDD to the indigenous soil microflora. Biodegradation of TCDD was monitored by the evolution of /sup 14/CO/sub 2/ and by high resolution gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (CC/MS).

  14. Translating MAPGEN to ASPEN for MER

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rabideau, Gregg R.; Knight, Russell L.; Lenda, Matthew; Maldague, Pierre F.

    2013-01-01

    This software translates MAPGEN (Europa and APGEN) domains to ASPEN, and the resulting domain can be used to perform planning for the Mars Exploration Rover (MER). In other words, this is a conversion of two distinct planning languages (both declarative and procedural) to a third (declarative) planning language in order to solve the problem of faithful translation from mixed-domain representations into the ASPEN Modeling Language. The MAPGEN planning system is an example of a hybrid procedural/declarative system where the advantages of each are leveraged to produce an effective planner/scheduler for MER tactical planning. The adaptation of the planning system (ASPEN) was investigated, and, with some translation, much of the procedural knowledge encoding is amenable to declarative knowledge encoding. The approach was to compose translators from the core languages used for adapting MAGPEN, which consists of Europa and APGEN. Europa is a constraint- based planner/scheduler where domains are encoded using a declarative model. APGEN is also constraint-based, in that it tracks constraints on resources and states and other variables. Domains are encoded in both constraints and code snippets that execute according to a forward sweep through the plan. Europa and APGEN communicate to each other using proxy activities in APGEN that represent constraints and/or tokens in Europa. The composition of a translator from Europa to ASPEN was fairly straightforward, as ASPEN is also a declarative planning system, and the specific uses of Europa for the MER domain matched ASPEN s native encoding fairly closely. On the other hand, translating from APGEN to ASPEN was considerably more involved. On the surface, the types of activities and resources one encodes in APGEN appear to match oneto- one to the activities, state variables, and resources in ASPEN. But, when looking into the definitions of how resources are profiled and activities are expanded, one sees code snippets that access

  15. PERFORMANCE CHARACTERISTICS OF 65-MER OLIGONUCLEOTIDE MICROARRAYS

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Myoyong; Xiang, Charlie C.; Trent, Jeffrey M.; Bittner, Michael L.

    2009-01-01

    Microarray fabrication using pre-synthesized long oligonucleotide is becoming increasingly important, but a study of large-scale array productions is not published yet. We addressed the issue of fabricating oligonucleotide microarrays by spotting commercial, pre-synthesized 65-mers with 5′ amines representing 7500 murine genes. Amine-modified oligonucleotides were immobilized on glass slides having aldehyde groups via transient Schiff base formation followed by reduction to produce a covalent conjugate. When RNA derived from the same source was used for Cy3 and Cy5 labeling and hybridized to the same array, signal intensities spanning three orders of magnitude were observed, and the coefficient of variation between the two channels for all spots was 8–10%. To ascertain the reproducibility of ratio determination of these arrays, two triplicate hybridizations (with fluorochrome reversal) comparing RNAs from a fibroblast (NIH3T3) and a breast cancer (JC) cell line were carried out. The 95% confidence interval for all spots in the six hybridizations was 0.60 – 1.66. This level of reproducibility allows use of the full range of pattern finding and discriminant analysis typically applied to cDNA microarrays. Further comparative testing was carried out with oligonucleotide microarrays, cDNA microarrays and RT-PCR assays to examine the comparability of results across these different methodologies. PMID:17617369

  16. SARS and MERS: recent insights into emerging coronaviruses.

    PubMed

    de Wit, Emmie; van Doremalen, Neeltje; Falzarano, Darryl; Munster, Vincent J

    2016-08-01

    The emergence of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in 2012 marked the second introduction of a highly pathogenic coronavirus into the human population in the twenty-first century. The continuing introductions of MERS-CoV from dromedary camels, the subsequent travel-related viral spread, the unprecedented nosocomial outbreaks and the high case-fatality rates highlight the need for prophylactic and therapeutic measures. Scientific advancements since the 2002-2003 severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) pandemic allowed for rapid progress in our understanding of the epidemiology and pathogenesis of MERS-CoV and the development of therapeutics. In this Review, we detail our present understanding of the transmission and pathogenesis of SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV, and discuss the current state of development of measures to combat emerging coronaviruses. PMID:27344959

  17. Effects of Sediment Iron Mineral Composition on Microbially Mediated Changes in Divalent Metal Speciation: Importance of ferrihydrite

    SciTech Connect

    Cooper, David C.; Neal, Andrew L.; Kukkadapu, Ravi K.; Brewe, Dale; Coby, Aaron J.; Picardal, Flynn W.

    2005-04-01

    Dissimilatory metal reducing bacteria (DMRB) can influence geochemical processes that subsequently affect the speciation the speciation and lability of metallic contaminants within natural environments. Most investigations into the effect of DMRB on sediment geochemistry utilize various synthetic oxides as the FeIII source (e.g. ferrihydrite, goethite, hematite, hydrous ferric oxide), providing for well-controlled experiments. However, these materials do not necessarily emulate the actual mineralogical composition of natural systems, nor do they account for the effect of sediment mineralogy on microbial activity and/or microbially induced geochemical processes. Our experiments with a divalent metal (ZnII) indicate that, while sediment mineralogy may have little effect on the net rate of microbial iron reduction, it does impact the resultant speciation of reduced iron and sediment associated transition metals. These data demonstrate that microbial reduction of synthetic goethite carrying previously sorbed ZnII increased both [ZnII-aq] and the proportion of sorbed ZnII that is insoluble in 0.5 M HCl. Microbial reduction of FeIII in similarly treated iron-bearing clayey sediment (Fe-clay) and hematite sand had no similar effect. Moessbauer spectroscopy data indicate that small amounts of ferrihydrite present in the synthetic VHSA goethite are preferentially consumed during FeIII reduction, a process that may result from FeII-driven conversion of ferrihydrite to goethite. Microbial reduction of Fe-clay did not permanently alter iron speciation within the Fe-clay. Zinc k-edge XAS data collected for ZnII previously sorbed to VHSA goethite and Fe-clay indicate that microbial FeIII reduction altered ZnII bonding in fundamentally different ways for VHSA goethite and Fe-clay. In VHSA goethite, XANES data indicate ZnO6 octahedra in both sterile and reduced samples. EXAFS data indicate a slightly increased average Zn-O coordination number and a slightly higher degree of long

  18. WATER ON MARS: EVIDENCE FROM MER MISSION RESULTS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2006-01-01

    The Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission landed two rovers on Mars, equipped with a highly-capable suite of science instruments. The Spirit rover landed on the inside Gusev Crater on January 5, 2004, and the Opportunity rover three weeks later on Meridiani Planum. This paper summarizes some of the findings from the MER rovers related to the NASA science strategy of investigating past and present water on Mars.

  19. Self-assembly of 33-mer gliadin peptide oligomers.

    PubMed

    Herrera, M G; Benedini, L A; Lonez, C; Schilardi, P L; Hellweg, T; Ruysschaert, J-M; Dodero, V I

    2015-11-28

    The 33-mer gliadin peptide, LQLQPF(PQPQLPY)3PQPQPF, is a highly immunogenic peptide involved in celiac disease and probably in other immunopathologies associated with gliadin. Herein, dynamic light scattering measurements showed that 33-mer, in the micromolar concentration range, forms polydisperse nano- and micrometer range particles in aqueous media. This behaviour is reminiscent of classical association of colloids and we hypothesized that the 33-mer peptide self-assembles into micelles that could be the precursors of 33-mer oligomers in water. Deposition of 33-mer peptide aqueous solution on bare mica generated nano- and microstructures with different morphologies as revealed by atomic force microscopy. At 6 μM, the 33-mer is organised in isolated and clusters of spherical nanostructures. In the 60 to 250 μM concentration range, the spherical oligomers associated mainly in linear and annular arrangements and structures adopting a "sheet" type morphology appeared. At higher concentrations (610 μM), mainly filaments and plaques immersed in a background of nanospherical structures were detected. The occurrence of different morphologies of oligomers and finally the filaments suggests that the unique specific geometry of the 33-mer oligomers has a crucial role in the subsequent condensation and organization of their fractal structures into the final filaments. The self-assembly process on mica is described qualitatively and quantitatively by a fractal diffusion limited aggregation (DLA) behaviour with the fractal dimension in the range of 1.62 ± 0.02 to 1.73 ± 0.03. Secondary structure evaluation of the oligomers by Attenuated Total Reflection FTIR spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR) revealed the existence of a conformational equilibrium of self-assembled structures, from an extended conformation to a more folded parallel beta elongated structures. Altogether, these findings provide structural and morphological information about supramolecular organization of the 33-mer

  20. A Practical Modeling Approach for NAPL Dissolution Kinetics, Microbially-Mediated Redox Reactions and Aquifer-Aquitard Diffusion to Assess Remedial Options

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parker, J.; Kim, U.; Widdowson, M.; Chappel, F.

    2008-12-01

    Explicit modeling of contaminant dissolution from heterogeneously distributed NAPL sources, microbial growth and reaction kinetics, and diffusion into or out of low permeability layers pose significant difficulties. These include the need to estimate a large number of parameters, which may subject to great uncertainty due to inverse problem ill-posedness given limited data, and to a lesser extent, the large computational effort that may be required to solve a rigorously formulated problem. An upscaled model for NAPL dissolution kinetics is utilized in the present study based on previous work, with extentions to consider concurrent effects of residual DNAPL and pools or lenses and to consider multi-component NAPL mixtures. An approach is presented to model microbially-mediated redox reactions subject to the assumption that microbial growth and reaction rates are primarily limited by transport processes rather than by microbial kinetics at time and space scales relevant for many remediation problems. The simplified model requires only stoichiometric coefficients for electron donor and electron acceptor half-reactions and the fraction of electron donor needed for cell synthesis. Contaminant diffusion into low permeability layers and subsequent back-diffusion is approximated as a first-order mass transfer problem with an effective mass transfer coefficient computed from aquifer-aquitard properties by equating second moments of diffusion and mass transfer solutions. Accuracy of the simplified model formulation is evaluated for a hypothetical problem involving a DNAPL source consisting of a mixture of TCE and Stoddard solvent with background dissolved organic carbon, oxygen and sulfate in groundwater for 40 years followed by injection of vegetable oil as a supplemental electron donor to enhance reductive dechlorination. The simplified solution is compared to numerical results that consider multi-species Monod kinetics with explicit treatment of back-diffusion.

  1. Role of MerH in mercury resistance in the archaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus

    PubMed Central

    Schelert, James; Rudrappa, Deepak; Johnson, Tyler

    2013-01-01

    Crenarchaeota include extremely thermoacidophilic organisms that thrive in geothermal environments dominated by sulfidic ores and heavy metals such as mercury. Mercuric ion, Hg(II), inactivates transcription in the crenarchaeote Sulfolobus solfataricus and simultaneously derepresses transcription of a resistance operon, merHAI, through interaction with the MerR transcription factor. While mercuric reductase (MerA) is required for metal resistance, the role of MerH, an adjacent small and predicted product of an ORF, has not been explored. Inactivation of MerH either by nonsense mutation or by in-frame deletion diminished Hg(II) resistance of mutant cells. Promoter mapping studies indicated that Hg(II) sensitivity of the merH nonsense mutant arose through transcriptional polarity, and its metal resistance was restored partially by single copy merH complementation. Since MerH was not required in vitro for MerA-catalysed Hg(II) reduction, MerH may play an alternative role in metal resistance. Inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry analysis of the MerH deletion strain following metal challenge indicated that there was prolonged retention of intracellular Hg(II). Finally, a reduced rate of mer operon induction in the merH deletion mutant suggested that the requirement for MerH could result from metal trafficking to the MerR transcription factor. PMID:23619003

  2. Beta-arrestin-2 negatively modulates inflammation response in mouse chondrocytes induced by 4-mer hyaluronan oligosaccharide.

    PubMed

    Campo, Giuseppe M; Avenoso, Angela; D'Ascola, Angela; Scuruchi, Michele; Calatroni, Alberto; Campo, Salvatore

    2015-01-01

    Beta-arrestin-2 is an adaptor protein that terminates G protein activation and seems to be involved in the modulation of the inflammatory response. Small hyaluronan (HA) fragments, such as 4-mer HA oligosaccharides, are known to interact with the toll-like receptor-4 (TLR-4) with consequent activation of the nuclear factor kappaB (NF-kB) that in turn stimulates the inflammation response. NF-kB activation is mediated by different pathways, in particular by the transforming growth factor-activated kinase-1 (TAK-1). Conversely, increased levels of protein kinase A (PKA), induced by cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP), seem to inhibit NF-kB activation. We studied the involvement and role of beta-arrestin-2 in mouse chondrocytes stimulated with 4-mer HA fragments. The exposure of chondrocytes to 4-mer HA produced a significant up-regulation in TLR-4, cAMP, beta-arrestin-2, TAK-1, protein 38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (p38MAPK), and PKA, both in terms of mRNA expression and of the related protein levels. NF-kB was significantly activated, thereby producing the transcription of pro-inflammatory mediators, including tumor necrosis factor alpha, interleukin-6, and interleukin-17. The treatment of 4-mer HA-stimulated chondrocytes with antibodies against beta-arrestin-2 and/or a specific PKA inhibitor, significantly increased the inflammatory response, while the treatment with a specific p38MAPK inhibitor significantly reduced the inflammatory response. Interestingly, the anti-inflammatory action exerted by beta-arrestin-2 appeared to be mediated in part through the direct inhibition of p38MAPK, preventing NF-kB activation, and in part through cAMP and PKA activation primed by G protein signaling, which exerted an inhibitory effect on NF-kB. Taken together, these results could be useful for future anti-inflammatory strategies. PMID:25318610

  3. Evaluation of candidate vaccine approaches for MERS-CoV

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Wang, Lingshu; Shi, Wei; Joyce, M. Gordon; Modjarrad, Kayvon; Zhang, Yi; Leung, Kwanyee; Lees, Christopher R.; Zhou, Tongqing; Yassine, Hadi M.; Kanekiyo, Masaru; et al

    2015-07-28

    The emergence of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) as a cause of severe respiratory disease highlights the need for effective approaches to CoV vaccine development. Efforts focused solely on the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of the viral Spike (S) glycoprotein may not optimize neutralizing antibody (NAb) responses. Here we show that immunogens based on full-length S DNA and S1 subunit protein elicit robust serum-neutralizing activity against several MERS-CoV strains in mice and non-human primates. Serological analysis and isolation of murine monoclonal antibodies revealed that immunization elicits NAbs to RBD and, non-RBD portions of S1 and S2 subunit. Multiple neutralization mechanismsmore » were demonstrated by solving the atomic structure of a NAb-RBD complex, through sequencing of neutralization escape viruses and by constructing MERS-CoV S variants for serological assays. Immunization of rhesus macaques confers protection against MERS-CoV-induced radiographic pneumonia, as assessed using computerized tomography, supporting this strategy as a promising approach for MERS-CoV vaccine development.« less

  4. Evaluation of candidate vaccine approaches for MERS-CoV

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Lingshu; Shi, Wei; Joyce, M. Gordon; Modjarrad, Kayvon; Zhang, Yi; Leung, Kwanyee; Lees, Christopher R.; Zhou, Tongqing; Yassine, Hadi M.; Kanekiyo, Masaru; Yang, Zhi-yong; Chen, Xuejun; Becker, Michelle M.; Freeman, Megan; Vogel, Leatrice; Johnson, Joshua C.; Olinger, Gene; Todd, John P.; Bagci, Ulas; Solomon, Jeffrey; Mollura, Daniel J.; Hensley, Lisa; Jahrling, Peter; Denison, Mark R.; Rao, Srinivas S.; Subbarao, Kanta; Kwong, Peter D.; Mascola, John R.; Kong, Wing-Pui; Graham, Barney S.

    2015-07-28

    The emergence of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) as a cause of severe respiratory disease highlights the need for effective approaches to CoV vaccine development. Efforts focused solely on the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of the viral Spike (S) glycoprotein may not optimize neutralizing antibody (NAb) responses. Here we show that immunogens based on full-length S DNA and S1 subunit protein elicit robust serum-neutralizing activity against several MERS-CoV strains in mice and non-human primates. Serological analysis and isolation of murine monoclonal antibodies revealed that immunization elicits NAbs to RBD and, non-RBD portions of S1 and S2 subunit. Multiple neutralization mechanisms were demonstrated by solving the atomic structure of a NAb-RBD complex, through sequencing of neutralization escape viruses and by constructing MERS-CoV S variants for serological assays. Immunization of rhesus macaques confers protection against MERS-CoV-induced radiographic pneumonia, as assessed using computerized tomography, supporting this strategy as a promising approach for MERS-CoV vaccine development.

  5. Evaluation of candidate vaccine approaches for MERS-CoV

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Lingshu; Shi, Wei; Joyce, M. Gordon; Modjarrad, Kayvon; Zhang, Yi; Leung, Kwanyee; Lees, Christopher R.; Zhou, Tongqing; Yassine, Hadi M.; Kanekiyo, Masaru; Yang, Zhi-yong; Chen, Xuejun; Becker, Michelle M.; Freeman, Megan; Vogel, Leatrice; Johnson, Joshua C.; Olinger, Gene; Todd, John P.; Bagci, Ulas; Solomon, Jeffrey; Mollura, Daniel J.; Hensley, Lisa; Jahrling, Peter; Denison, Mark R.; Rao, Srinivas S.; Subbarao, Kanta; Kwong, Peter D.; Mascola, John R.; Kong, Wing-Pui; Graham, Barney S.

    2015-01-01

    The emergence of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) as a cause of severe respiratory disease highlights the need for effective approaches to CoV vaccine development. Efforts focused solely on the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of the viral Spike (S) glycoprotein may not optimize neutralizing antibody (NAb) responses. Here we show that immunogens based on full-length S DNA and S1 subunit protein elicit robust serum-neutralizing activity against several MERS-CoV strains in mice and non-human primates. Serological analysis and isolation of murine monoclonal antibodies revealed that immunization elicits NAbs to RBD and, non-RBD portions of S1 and S2 subunit. Multiple neutralization mechanisms were demonstrated by solving the atomic structure of a NAb-RBD complex, through sequencing of neutralization escape viruses and by constructing MERS-CoV S variants for serological assays. Immunization of rhesus macaques confers protection against MERS-CoV-induced radiographic pneumonia, as assessed using computerized tomography, supporting this strategy as a promising approach for MERS-CoV vaccine development. PMID:26218507

  6. Systolic dysfunction in cardiac-specific ligand-inducible MerCreMer transgenic mice

    PubMed Central

    Hall, Michael E.; Smith, Grant; Hall, John E.

    2011-01-01

    The Cre-loxP system is a useful tool to study the physiological effects of gene knockout in the heart. One limitation with using this system in the heart is the toxic effect of chronic expression of the Cre recombinase. To circumvent this limitation, a widely used inducible cardiac-specific model, Myh6-MerCreMer (Cre), using tamoxifen (TAM) to activate Cre has been developed. The current study examined cardiac function in Cre-positive C57B/J6 mice exposed to one, three, or five daily doses of a 40 mg/kg TAM to induce Cre activity specifically in the heart. Echocardiography demonstrated no statistically significant differences in systolic function (SF) at baseline as assessed by fractional shortening. In mice exposed to five injections, a significant fall in all determinants of SF was observed 6 days after TAM was initiated. However, SF returned to baseline levels 10 days after TAM initiation although the hearts exhibited significant hypertrophy. Heart weight-to-tibia length ratios were 73 ± 3, 78.5 ± 6, and 87.6 ± 9 mg/cm for one, three, and five TAM injections, respectively. TAM had no effect on cardiac function or hypertrophy in Cre-negative mice. Cre-positive mice receiving five TAM injections had significant reductions in cardiac mitochondrial ATP and significant reductions in the expression of proteins important for the regulation of cardiac oxidative phosphorylation including peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-γ coactivator-1α and pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase-4. Thus inducible cardiac-specific activation of Cre recombinase caused a transient decline in SF that was dependent on the number of TAM doses and associated with significant hypertrophy and alterations in mitochondrial ATP and important proteins involved in the regulation of cardiac oxidative phosphorylation. PMID:21536850

  7. Studying Microbial Communities In Vivo: A Model of Host-mediated Interaction Between Candida Albicans and Pseudomonas Aeruginosa in the Airways.

    PubMed

    Faure, Emmanuel; Bortolotti, Perrine; Kipnis, Eric; Faure, Karine; Guery, Benoit

    2016-01-01

    Studying host-pathogen interaction enables us to understand the underlying mechanisms of the pathogenicity during microbial infection. The prognosis of the host depends on the involvement of an adapted immune response against the pathogen. Immune response is complex and results from interaction of the pathogens and several immune or non-immune cellular types. In vitro studies cannot characterise these interactions and focus on cell-pathogen interactions. Moreover, in the airway, particularly in patients with suppurative chronic lung disease or in mechanically ventilated patients, polymicrobial communities are present and complicate host-pathogen interaction. Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Candida albicans are both problem pathogens, frequently isolated from tracheobronchial samples, and associated to severe infections, especially in intensive care unit. Microbial interactions have been reported between these pathogens in vitro but the clinical impact of these interactions remains unclear. To study the interactions between C. albicans and P. aeruginosa, a murine model of C. albicans airways colonization, followed by a P. aeruginosa-mediated acute lung infection was performed. PMID:26863066

  8. Model for the distributions of k -mers in DNA sequences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Yaw-Hwang; Nyeo, Su-Long; Yeh, Chiung-Yuh

    2005-07-01

    The evolutionary features based on the distributions of k -mers in the DNA sequences of various organisms are studied. The organisms are classified into three groups based on their evolutionary periods: (a) E. coli and T. pallidum (b) yeast, zebrafish, A. thaliana, and fruit fly, (c) mouse, chicken, and human. The distributions of 6-mers of these three groups are shown to be, respectively, (a) unimodal, (b) unimodal with peaks generally shifted to smaller frequencies of occurrence, (c) bimodal. To describe the bimodal feature of the k -mer distributions of group (c), a model based on the cytosine-guanine “ CG ” content of the DNA sequences is introduced and shown to provide reasonably good agreements.

  9. Microbially-Mediated Sulfur Oxidation in Diffuse Hydrothermal Vent Fluids at Axial Seamount, Juan de Fuca Ridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akerman, N. H.; Butterfield, D. A.; Huber, J. A.

    2011-12-01

    Diffusely venting hydrothermal fluids can act as a window to the subseafloor microbial environment, where chemically-reduced hydrothermal fluids mixing with oxygenated seawater in the shallow crust creates chemical disequilibria that chemotrophic microorganisms can exploit for energy gain. At Axial Seamount, an active deep-sea volcano located on the Juan de Fuca Ridge, sulfide concentrations have been measured as high as 5770 μM, and sulfide oxidation is quantitatively the most important chemical energy source for microbial metabolism. In addition, studies of microbial population structure indicate that diffuse fluids at Axial are dominated by putative sulfur- and sulfide-oxidizing bacteria belonging to the Epsilonproteobacteria. To further study this important microbial process, we surveyed diffuse vent samples from Axial over a range of temperature, pH, and sulfide concentrations for the presence and expression of sulfide-oxidizing bacteria using a functional gene approach. Dissolved oxygen concentrations decrease exponentially above 40°C and lower the potential for sulfide oxidation, so we identified six sites of different temperatures, two each in the low (< 30°C), medium (~30°C), and high temperature (30 - 50°C) range. The low temperature sites had sulfide-to-temperature ratios of 1 - 26, the medium from 15 - 29, and the high from 26 - 36. PCR primers were designed to target the sulfur oxidation gene soxB specifically from Epsilonproteobacteria and five of the six sites were positive for soxB in the DNA fraction. Bulk RNA was also extracted from the same sites to examine in situ expression of soxB. Data from these analyses, along with quantification of the soxB gene abundance and expression using quantitative PCR, are currently being carried out. Together, this data set of soxB gene diversity, expression, and abundance along with geochemical data will allow us to quantitatively determine the functional dynamics of sulfide oxidation in the subseafloor at

  10. A stable mercury-containing complex of the organomercurial lyase MerB: catalysis, product release, and direct transfer to MerA.

    PubMed

    Benison, Gregory C; Di Lello, Paola; Shokes, Jacob E; Cosper, Nathaniel J; Scott, Robert A; Legault, Pascale; Omichinski, James G

    2004-07-01

    Bacteria isolated from organic mercury-contaminated sites have developed a system of two enzymes that allows them to efficiently convert both ionic and organic mercury compounds to the less toxic elemental mercury. Both enzymes are encoded on the mer operon and require sulfhydryl-bound substrates. The first enzyme is an organomercurial lyase (MerB), and the second enzyme is a mercuric ion reductase (MerA). MerB catalyzes the protonolysis of the carbon-mercury bond, resulting in the formation of a reduced carbon compound and inorganic ionic mercury. Of several mercury-containing MerB complexes that we attempted to prepare, the most stable was a complex consisting of the organomercurial lyase (MerB), a mercuric ion, and a molecule of the MerB inhibitor dithiothreitol (DTT). Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy and extended X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy of the MerB/Hg/DTT complex have shown that the ligands to the mercuric ion in the complex consist of both sulfurs from the DTT molecule and one cysteine ligand, C96, from the protein. The stability of the MerB/Hg/DTT complex, even in the presence of a large excess of competing cysteine, has been demonstrated by NMR and dialysis. We used an enzyme buffering test to determine that the MerB/Hg/DTT complex acts as a substrate for the mercuric reductase MerA. The observed MerA activity is higher than the expected activity assuming free diffusion of the mercuric ion from MerB to MerA. This suggests that the mercuric ion can be transferred between the two enzymes by a direct transfer mechanism. PMID:15222746

  11. Cassini, Rømer, and the velocity of light

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bobis, Laurence; Lequeux, James

    2008-07-01

    The discovery of the finite nature of the velocity of light is usually attributed to Rømer. However, a text at the Paris Observatory confirms the minority opinion according to which Cassini was first to propose the ‘successive motion’ of light, while giving a rather correct order of magnitude for the duration of its propagation from the Sun to the Earth. We examine this question, and discuss why, in spite of the criticisms of Halley, Cassini abandoned this hypothesis while leaving Rømer free to publish it.

  12. The Ballerina Experiment on the Rømer Mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandt, Soren

    The Rømer mission has recently been approved as the next mission within the Danish Small Satellite Program. The scientific payload will consist of two separate experiments, the MONS and the Ballerina payloads. The primary objective of Ballerina is to provide accurate, real-time positions relayed to ground for ~ 70 Gamma Ray Bursts (GRBs) per year, and to study the temporal and spectral evolution of the early GRB X-ray afterglow. As an additional goal, Ballerina will detect and study bright X-ray transients, in particular X-ray novae and micro-quasar systems. R{\\o}mer is currently scheduled for launch in late 2003.

  13. Mobility and microbially mediated mobilization of gold and arsenic in soils from two gold mines in semi-arid and tropical Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reith, F.; McPhail, D. C.

    2007-03-01

    The mobility and microbially mediated solubilization of Au and As in regolith materials from two Au mines in Australia, i.e., the Peak Hill Gold Mine in semi-arid New South Wales and the Hit or Miss Gold Mine in tropical northern Queensland, was studied using a combination of geochemical and microbiological techniques. Gold is highly mobile in both environments, the mobility of Au increases with increasing degree of weathering of host materials, and the resident microbiota are capable of mediating its solubilization. The results of the microcosm experiments demonstrate that the activity of microorganisms needs to be taken into account when studying the mobility and solubilization of Au in the Australian regolith. In primary, unweathered mineralization material from the Hit or Miss mine 99 wt% of Au was extracted only in the strongest final step of the sequential extractions, in concentrated aqua regia. In alteration zone material from the Peak Hill Gold Mine 80 wt% of Au was associated with the operationally defined Mn and Fe oxides. In contrast, in auriferous soils overlying mineralization at both sites 90-95 wt% of Au was associated with the operationally defined exchangeable, clay-bound and organic fractions. Microcosm experiments were incubated biologically active and inactive (sterilized) in 1:4 (w/v) aqueous slurries at 25 °C in the dark for up to 95 days. In biologically active microcosms with soils from the Peak Hill- and the Hit or Miss Gold Mines approximately 55 wt% (907 ng g -1 d.w. soil) and 20 wt% (233 ng g -1 d.w. soil) of the total Au, respectively, was solubilized during the incubation. In contrast, no or significantly lower Au concentrations were observed in biologically inactive microcosms. The mobility and microbially mediated release of As was limited at both sites and appears to be mostly controlled by abiotic adsorption and desorption on Mn- and Fe-oxides. Arsenic has a low solubility in the more mobile fractions and is mostly associated

  14. The effect of nitrate and sulfate on mediator-less microbial fuel cells with high internal resistance.

    PubMed

    Yi, Taewoo; Harper, Willie F

    2009-11-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) simultaneously provide waste treatment while capturing energy in the form of electricity. Although these devices are being used in engineered and natural environments where nitrate or sulfate may inhibit power production, the effects of these electron acceptors have not been fully explored. This research investigated the effect of nitrate and sulfate on MFC power production when these chemicals are present at the anode. Nitrate decreased the maximum current and power density by 15 and 17%, respectively, when present at 20 mg/L, and sulfate caused the maximum current and power density to decrease by 4 and 7%, respectively (also at 20 mg/L). Stronger inhibition was observed at higher nitrate and sulfate concentrations, but power production persisted. Coulombic efficiency decreased as nitrate and sulfate levels increased, although this was not primarily due to the biochemical reduction of nitrate or sulfate; rather, it was probably because of the inhibition of exoelectrogens. PMID:19957763

  15. Vaccines for the prevention against the threat of MERS-CoV.

    PubMed

    Du, Lanying; Tai, Wanbo; Zhou, Yusen; Jiang, Shibo

    2016-09-01

    First identified in 2012, Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is listed as a new Category C Priority Pathogen. While the high mortality of MERS-CoV infection is further intensified by potential human-to-human transmissibility, no MERS vaccines are available for human use. This review explains immune responses resulting from MERS-CoV infection, describes MERS vaccine criteria, and presents available small animal models to evaluate the efficacy of MERS vaccines. Current advances in vaccine development are summarized, focusing on specific applications and limitations of each vaccine category. Taken together, this review provides valuable guidelines toward the development of an effective and safe MERS vaccine. This article is written for a Special Focus Issue of Expert Review of Vaccines on 'Vaccines for Biodefence'. PMID:26985862

  16. Planning Mars Memory: Learning from the MER Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Charlotte, Linde

    2004-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation discusses ways in which the lessons learned from a mission can be systematically remembered, retained, and applied by individuals and by an organization as a whole. The presentation cites lessons learned from the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Mission as examples.

  17. Characterization of MER Landing Sites Using MOC and MOLA

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, F. S.; Parker, T. J.

    2002-01-01

    The MOC images for MER are compared with MOLA data to characterize and locate each image. MOLA profiles show that Hematite remains benign, Melas and Isidis are rougher, and Athabasca and Gusev have regions of significant small scale topography. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  18. ROLE OF NA+ IN TRANSPORT OF HG2+ AND INDUCTION OF THE TN21 "MER" OPERON

    EPA Science Inventory

    The effects of sodium ions on the uptake of Hg 2 + and induction of the TN21 mer operon were studied using E. coli HMS174 harboring the reporter plasmids pRB28 and pOS14. lasmid pRB28 carries merRT' and pOS14 carries merRTPC of the mer operon, both cloned upstream of a promoterle...

  19. MERS-CoV Antibodies in Humans, Africa, 2013-2014.

    PubMed

    Liljander, Anne; Meyer, Benjamin; Jores, Joerg; Müller, Marcel A; Lattwein, Erik; Njeru, Ian; Bett, Bernard; Drosten, Christian; Corman, Victor Max

    2016-06-01

    Dromedaries in Africa and elsewhere carry the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV). To search for evidence of autochthonous MERS-CoV infection in humans, we tested archived serum from livestock handlers in Kenya for MERS-CoV antibodies. Serologic evidence of infection was confirmed for 2 persons sampled in 2013 and 2014. PMID:27071076

  20. Antenna Designs for the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) Spacecraft, Lander, and Rover

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vacchione, Joseph; Thelen, Michael; Brown, Paula; Huang, John; Kelly, Ken; Krishnan, Satish

    2001-01-01

    This presentation focuses on the design of antennas for the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER). Specific topics covered include: MER spacecraft architecture, the evolution of an antenna system, MER cruise stage antennas, antenna stacks, the heat-shield/back shell antenna, and lander and rover antennas. Additionally, the mission's science objectives are reviewed.

  1. MERS-CoV Antibodies in Humans, Africa, 2013–2014

    PubMed Central

    Liljander, Anne; Meyer, Benjamin; Jores, Joerg; Müller, Marcel A.; Lattwein, Erik; Njeru, Ian; Bett, Bernard; Corman, Victor Max

    2016-01-01

    Dromedaries in Africa and elsewhere carry the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV). To search for evidence of autochthonous MERS-CoV infection in humans, we tested archived serum from livestock handlers in Kenya for MERS-CoV antibodies. Serologic evidence of infection was confirmed for 2 persons sampled in 2013 and 2014. PMID:27071076

  2. Development of human neutralizing monoclonal antibodies for prevention and therapy of MERS-CoV infections

    PubMed Central

    Ying, Tianlei; Li, Haoyang; Lu, Lu; Dimitrov, Dimiter S; Jiang, Shibo

    2014-01-01

    The recent Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) outbreak poses a serious threat to public health. Here, we summarize recent advances in identifying human neutralizing monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against MERS-CoV, describe their mechanisms of action, and analyze their potential for treatment of MERS-CoV infections. PMID:25456101

  3. Unraveling the drivers of MERS-CoV transmission.

    PubMed

    Cauchemez, Simon; Nouvellet, Pierre; Cori, Anne; Jombart, Thibaut; Garske, Tini; Clapham, Hannah; Moore, Sean; Mills, Harriet Linden; Salje, Henrik; Collins, Caitlin; Rodriquez-Barraquer, Isabel; Riley, Steven; Truelove, Shaun; Algarni, Homoud; Alhakeem, Rafat; AlHarbi, Khalid; Turkistani, Abdulhafiz; Aguas, Ricardo J; Cummings, Derek A T; Van Kerkhove, Maria D; Donnelly, Christl A; Lessler, Justin; Fraser, Christophe; Al-Barrak, Ali; Ferguson, Neil M

    2016-08-01

    With more than 1,700 laboratory-confirmed infections, Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) remains a significant threat for public health. However, the lack of detailed data on modes of transmission from the animal reservoir and between humans means that the drivers of MERS-CoV epidemics remain poorly characterized. Here, we develop a statistical framework to provide a comprehensive analysis of the transmission patterns underlying the 681 MERS-CoV cases detected in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) between January 2013 and July 2014. We assess how infections from the animal reservoir, the different levels of mixing, and heterogeneities in transmission have contributed to the buildup of MERS-CoV epidemics in KSA. We estimate that 12% [95% credible interval (CI): 9%, 15%] of cases were infected from the reservoir, the rest via human-to-human transmission in clusters (60%; CI: 57%, 63%), within (23%; CI: 20%, 27%), or between (5%; CI: 2%, 8%) regions. The reproduction number at the start of a cluster was 0.45 (CI: 0.33, 0.58) on average, but with large SD (0.53; CI: 0.35, 0.78). It was >1 in 12% (CI: 6%, 18%) of clusters but fell by approximately one-half (47% CI: 34%, 63%) its original value after 10 cases on average. The ongoing exposure of humans to MERS-CoV from the reservoir is of major concern, given the continued risk of substantial outbreaks in health care systems. The approach we present allows the study of infectious disease transmission when data linking cases to each other remain limited and uncertain. PMID:27457935

  4. Unraveling the drivers of MERS-CoV transmission

    PubMed Central

    Cauchemez, Simon; Nouvellet, Pierre; Cori, Anne; Jombart, Thibaut; Clapham, Hannah; Moore, Sean; Mills, Harriet Linden; Salje, Henrik; Collins, Caitlin; Rodriquez-Barraquer, Isabel; Riley, Steven; Truelove, Shaun; Algarni, Homoud; Alhakeem, Rafat; AlHarbi, Khalid; Turkistani, Abdulhafiz; Aguas, Ricardo J.; Cummings, Derek A. T.; Van Kerkhove, Maria D.; Donnelly, Christl A.; Lessler, Justin; Fraser, Christophe; Al-Barrak, Ali; Ferguson, Neil M.

    2016-01-01

    With more than 1,700 laboratory-confirmed infections, Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) remains a significant threat for public health. However, the lack of detailed data on modes of transmission from the animal reservoir and between humans means that the drivers of MERS-CoV epidemics remain poorly characterized. Here, we develop a statistical framework to provide a comprehensive analysis of the transmission patterns underlying the 681 MERS-CoV cases detected in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) between January 2013 and July 2014. We assess how infections from the animal reservoir, the different levels of mixing, and heterogeneities in transmission have contributed to the buildup of MERS-CoV epidemics in KSA. We estimate that 12% [95% credible interval (CI): 9%, 15%] of cases were infected from the reservoir, the rest via human-to-human transmission in clusters (60%; CI: 57%, 63%), within (23%; CI: 20%, 27%), or between (5%; CI: 2%, 8%) regions. The reproduction number at the start of a cluster was 0.45 (CI: 0.33, 0.58) on average, but with large SD (0.53; CI: 0.35, 0.78). It was >1 in 12% (CI: 6%, 18%) of clusters but fell by approximately one-half (47% CI: 34%, 63%) its original value after 10 cases on average. The ongoing exposure of humans to MERS-CoV from the reservoir is of major concern, given the continued risk of substantial outbreaks in health care systems. The approach we present allows the study of infectious disease transmission when data linking cases to each other remain limited and uncertain. PMID:27457935

  5. Microbial excavation of solid carbonates powered by P-type ATPase-mediated transcellular Ca2+ transport

    PubMed Central

    Garcia-Pichel, Ferran; Ramírez-Reinat, Edgardo; Gao, Qunjie

    2010-01-01

    Some microbes, among them a few species of cyanobacteria, are able to excavate carbonate minerals, from limestone to biogenic carbonates, including coral reefs, in a bioerosive activity that directly links biological and geological parts of the global carbon cycle. The physiological mechanisms that enable such endolithic cyanobacteria to bore, however, remain unknown. In fact, their boring constitutes a geochemical paradox, in that photoautotrophic metabolism will tend to precipitate carbonates, not dissolve them. We developed a stable microbe/mineral boring system based on a cyanobacterial isolate, strain BC008, with which to study the process of microbial excavation directly in the laboratory. Measurements of boring into calcite under different light regimes, and an analysis of photopigment content and photosynthetic rates along boring filaments, helped us reject mechanisms based on the spatial or temporal separation of alkali versus Acid-generating metabolism (i.e., photosynthesis and respiration). Instead, extracellular Ca2+ imaging of boring cultures in vivo showed that BC008 was able to take up Ca2+ at the excavation front, decreasing the local extracellular ion activity product of calcium carbonate enough to promote spontaneous dissolution there. Intracellular Ca2+ was then transported away along the multicellular cyanobacterial trichomes and excreted at the distal borehole opening into the external medium. Inhibition assays and gene expression analyses indicate that the uptake and transport was driven by P-type Ca2+-ATPases. We believe such a chemically simple and biologically sophisticated mechanism for boring to be unparalleled among bacteria. PMID:21115827

  6. Impact of nitrate-mediated microbial control of souring in oil reservoirs on the extent of corrosion.

    PubMed

    Nemati, M; Jenneman, G E; Voordouw, G

    2001-01-01

    The effect of microbial control of souring on the extent of corrosion was studied in a model system consisting of pure cultures of the nitrate-reducing, sulfide-oxidizing bacterium (NR-SOB) Thiomicrospira sp. strain CVO and the sulfate-reducing bacterium (SRB) Desulfovibrio sp. strain Lac6, as well as in an SRB consortium enriched from produced water from a Canadian oil reservoir. The average corrosion rate induced by the SRB consortium (1.4 g x m(-2) x day(-1)) was faster than that observed in the presence of strain Lac6 (0.2 g x m(-2) x day(-1)). Examination of the metallic coupons at the end of the tests indicated a uniform corrosion in both cases. Addition of CVO and 10 mM nitrate to a fully grown culture of Lac6 or the SRB consortium led to complete removal of sulfide from the system and a significant increase in the population of CVO, as determined by reverse sample genome probing. In the case of the SRB consortium addition of just nitrate (10 mM) had a similar effect. When grown in the absence of nitrate, the consortium was dominated by Desulfovibrio sp. strains Lac15 and Lac29, while growth in the presence of nitrate led to dominance of Desulfovibrio sp. strain Lac3. The addition of CVO and nitrate to the Lac6 culture or nitrate to the SRB consortium accelerated the average corrosion rate to 1.5 and 2.9 g x m(-2) x day(-1), respectively. Localized corrosion and the occurrence of pitting were apparent in both cases. Although the sulfide concentration (0.5-7 mM) had little effect on corrosion rates, a clear increase of the corrosion rate with increasing nitrate concentration was observed in experiments conducted with consortia enriched from produced water. PMID:11587574

  7. Allopurinol-mediated lignocellulose-derived microbial inhibitor tolerance by Clostridium beijerinckii during acetone-butanol-ethanol (ABE) fermentation.

    PubMed

    Ujor, Victor; Agu, Chidozie Victor; Gopalan, Venkat; Ezeji, Thaddeus Chukwuemeka

    2015-04-01

    In addition to glucans, xylans, and arabinans, lignocellulosic biomass hydrolysates contain significant levels of nonsugar components that are toxic to the microbes that are typically used to convert biomass to biofuels and chemicals. To enhance the tolerance of acetone-butanol-ethanol (ABE)-generating Clostridium beijerinckii NCIMB 8052 to these lignocellulose-derived microbial inhibitory compounds (LDMICs; e.g., furfural), we have been examining different metabolic perturbation strategies to increase the cellular reductant pools and thereby facilitate detoxification of LDMICs. As part of these efforts, we evaluated the effect of allopurinol, an inhibitor of NAD(P)H-generating xanthine dehydrogenase (XDH), on C. beijerinckii grown in furfural-supplemented medium and found that it unexpectedly increased the rate of detoxification of furfural by 1.4-fold and promoted growth, butanol, and ABE production by 1.2-, 2.5-, and 2-fold, respectively. Since NAD(P)H/NAD(P)(+) levels in C. beijerinckii were largely unchanged upon allopurinol treatment, we postulated and validated a possible basis in DNA repair to account for the solventogenic gains with allopurinol. Following the observation that supplementation of allopurinol in the C. beijerinckii growth media mitigates the toxic effects of nalidixic acid, a DNA-damaging antibiotic, we found that allopurinol elicited 2.4- and 6.7-fold increase in the messenger RNA (mRNA) levels of xanthine and hypoxanthine phosphoribosyltransferases, key purine-salvage enzymes. Consistent with this finding, addition of inosine (a precursor of hypoxanthine) and xanthine led to 1.4- and 1.7-fold increase in butanol production in furfural-challenged cultures of C. beijerinckii. Taken together, our results provide a purine salvage-based rationale for the unanticipated effect of allopurinol in improving furfural tolerance of the ABE-fermenting C. beijerinckii. PMID:25690312

  8. Demonstration of Mer-Cure Technology for Enhanced Mercury Control

    SciTech Connect

    John Marion; Dave O'Neill; Kevin Taugher; Shin Kang; Mark Johnson; Gerald Pargac; Jane Luedecke; Randy Gardiner; Mike Silvertooth; Jim Hicks; Carl Edberg; Ray Cournoyer; Stanley Bohdanowicz; Ken Peterson; Kurt Johnson; Steve Benson; Richard Schulz; Don McCollor; Mike Wuitshick

    2008-06-01

    Alstom Power Inc. has completed a DOE/NETL-sponsored program (under DOE Cooperative Agreement No. De-FC26-07NT42776) to demonstrate Mer-Cure{trademark}, one of Alstom's mercury control technologies for coal-fired boilers. The Mer-Cure{trademark}system utilizes a small amount of Mer-Clean{trademark} sorbent that is injected into the flue gas stream for oxidation and adsorption of gaseous mercury. Mer-Clean{trademark} sorbents are carbon-based and prepared with chemical additives that promote oxidation and capture of mercury. The Mer-Cure{trademark} system is unique in that the sorbent is injected into an environment where the mercury capture kinetics is accelerated. The full-scale demonstration program originally included test campaigns at two host sites: LCRA's 480-MW{sub e} Fayette Unit No.3 and Reliant Energy's 190-MW{sub e} Shawville Unit No.3. The only demonstration tests actually done were the short-term tests at LCRA due to budget constraints. This report gives a summary of the demonstration testing at Fayette Unit No.3. The goals for this Mercury Round 3 program, established by DOE/NETL under the original solicitation, were to reduce the uncontrolled mercury emissions by 90% at a cost significantly less than 50% of the previous target of $60,000/lb mercury removed. The results indicated that Mer-Cure{trademark} technology could achieve mercury removal of 90% based on uncontrolled stack emissions. The estimated costs for 90% mercury control, at a sorbent cost of $0.75 to $2.00/lb respectively, were $13,400 to $18,700/lb Hg removed. In summary, the results from demonstration testing show that the goals established by DOE/NETL were met during this test program. The goal of 90% mercury reduction was achieved. Estimated mercury removal costs were 69-78% lower than the benchmark of $60,000/lb mercury removed, significantly less than 50% of the baseline removal cost.

  9. PEDF and PEDF-derived peptide 44mer inhibit oxygen-glucose deprivation-induced oxidative stress through upregulating PPARγ via PEDF-R in H9c2 cells.

    PubMed

    Zhuang, Wei; Zhang, Hao; Pan, Jiajun; Li, Zhimin; Wei, Tengteng; Cui, Huazhu; Liu, Zhiwei; Guan, Qiuhua; Dong, Hongyan; Zhang, Zhongming

    2016-04-01

    Pigment epithelial-derived factor (PEDF) is a glycoprotein with broad biological activities including inhibiting oxygen-glucose deprivation(OGD)-induced cardiomyocytes apoptosis through its anti-oxidative properties. PEDF derived peptide-44mer shows similar cytoprotective effect to PEDF. However, the molecular mechanisms mediating cardiomyocytes apoptosis have not been fully established. Here we found that PEDF and 44mer decreased the content of ROS. This content was abolished by either PEDF-R small interfering RNA (siRNA) or PPARγ antagonist. The level of Lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) and phospholipase A2 (PLA2) was observed as drawn from the ELISA assays. PEDF and 44mer sequentially induced PPARγ expression was observed both in qPCR and Western blot assays. The level of LPA and PLA2 and PPARγ expression increased by PEDF and 44mer was significantly attenuated by PEDF-R siRNA. However, PEDF and 44mer inhibited the H9c2 cells and cultured neonatal rat myocardial cells apoptosis rate. On the other hand, TUNEL assay and cleavage of procaspase-3 showed that PEDF-R siRNA or PPARγ antagonist increased the apoptosis again. We conclude that under OGD condition, PEDF and 44mer reduce H9c2 cells apoptosis and inhibit OGD-induced oxidative stress via its receptor PEDF-R and the PPARγ signaling pathway. PMID:26966066

  10. The Effect of Temperature on Microbially-Mediated Organic Carbon Decomposition from a Global Survey of Scientific Ocean Drilling Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malinverno, A.; Martinez, E. A., Jr.

    2014-12-01

    The burial of particulate organic carbon (POC) in marine sediments is an important process in the Earth's carbon cycle. While some POC is buried for the long term, a substantial fraction is decomposed within the sediment, fueling subseafloor microbial life. The fundamental controls on the rate of POC decomposition are not well understood at present. Temperature has been proposed as an important factor, because at higher temperatures reaction rates are expected to be faster (as in the Arrhenius equation). To test the effect of temperature on POC decomposition, we assembled from the global scientific ocean drilling archive (DSDP, ODP, and IODP) a large data set of POC content in Cenozoic marine sediments. We concentrated on sites that are in regions of high POC deposition (continental margins and upwelling areas), have a reliable age model, and had in situ measurements of sediment temperature. Using the age and temperature data, we selected two sets of sites where sediments experienced either relatively high- or low-temperature histories that should have resulted in different rates of POC decomposition. We then compared average POC contents versus age in the high-T and low-T sets of sites. The POC content versus age in the low-T set (82 sites) follows a pattern similar to that of all the sites with an age model (419 sites): POC content (dry sediment weight fraction) starts around 1% at the seafloor, reaches a maximum of 1.2-1.3% at ~1.5 Ma, and then slowly decreases with increasing age to a nearly constant value of 0.6-0.7% at ages > 5 Ma. In the high-T set (83 sites), the average POC content shows a stronger decrease from a maximum of ~1.5% around 1 Ma to a low constant value of 0.4% at ages > 5 Ma. The more pronounced decrease in POC content and the lower amount remaining at ages > 5 Ma suggest that higher temperatures result in a greater extent of POC decomposition.

  11. Stable iron isotopes and microbial mediation in red pigmentation of the Rosso Ammonitico (mid-late Jurassic, Verona area, Italy).

    PubMed

    Préat, Alain R; de Jong, Jeroen T M; Mamet, Bernard L; Mattielli, Nadine

    2008-08-01

    The iron (Fe) isotopic composition of 17 Jurassic limestones from the Rosso Ammonitico of Verona (Italy) have been analyzed by Multiple-Collector Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (MC-ICP-MS). Such analysis allowed for the recognition of a clear iron isotopic fractionation (mean -0.8 per thousand, ranging between -1.52 to -0.06 per thousand) on a millimeter-centimeter scale between the red and grey facies of the studied formation. After gentle acid leaching, measurements of the Fe isotopic compositions gave delta(56)Fe values that were systematically lower in the red facies residues (median: -0.84 per thousand, range: -1.46 to +0.26 per thousand) compared to the grey facies residues (median: -0.08 per thousand, range: -0.34 to +0.23 per thousand). In addition, the red facies residues were characterized by a lighter delta(56)Fe signal relative to their corresponding leachates. These Fe isotopic fractionations could be a sensitive fingerprint of a biotic process; systematic isotopic differences between the red and grey facies residues, which consist of hematite and X-ray amorphous iron hydroxides, respectively, are hypothesized to have resulted from the oxidizing activity of iron bacteria and fungi in the red facies. The grey Fe isotopic data match the Fe isotopic signature of the terrestrial baseline established for igneous rocks and low-C(org) clastic sedimentary rocks. The Fe isotopic compositions of the grey laminations are consistent with the influx of detrital iron minerals and lack of microbial redox processes at the water-interface during deposition. Total Fe concentration measurements were performed by Inductively Coupled Plasma Atomic Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-AES) (confirmed by concentration estimations obtained by MC-ICP-MS analyses of microdrilled samples) on five samples, and resultant values range between 0.30% (mean) in the grey facies and 1.31% (mean) in the red facies. No correlation was observed between bulk Fe content and pigmentation

  12. These Are Not the K-mers You Are Looking For: Efficient Online K-mer Counting Using a Probabilistic Data Structure

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Qingpeng; Pell, Jason; Canino-Koning, Rosangela; Howe, Adina Chuang; Brown, C. Titus

    2014-01-01

    K-mer abundance analysis is widely used for many purposes in nucleotide sequence analysis, including data preprocessing for de novo assembly, repeat detection, and sequencing coverage estimation. We present the khmer software package for fast and memory efficient online counting of k-mers in sequencing data sets. Unlike previous methods based on data structures such as hash tables, suffix arrays, and trie structures, khmer relies entirely on a simple probabilistic data structure, a Count-Min Sketch. The Count-Min Sketch permits online updating and retrieval of k-mer counts in memory which is necessary to support online k-mer analysis algorithms. On sparse data sets this data structure is considerably more memory efficient than any exact data structure. In exchange, the use of a Count-Min Sketch introduces a systematic overcount for k-mers; moreover, only the counts, and not the k-mers, are stored. Here we analyze the speed, the memory usage, and the miscount rate of khmer for generating k-mer frequency distributions and retrieving k-mer counts for individual k-mers. We also compare the performance of khmer to several other k-mer counting packages, including Tallymer, Jellyfish, BFCounter, DSK, KMC, Turtle and KAnalyze. Finally, we examine the effectiveness of profiling sequencing error, k-mer abundance trimming, and digital normalization of reads in the context of high khmer false positive rates. khmer is implemented in C++ wrapped in a Python interface, offers a tested and robust API, and is freely available under the BSD license at github.com/ged-lab/khmer. PMID:25062443

  13. Constitutive synthesis of a transport function encoded by the Thiobacillus ferrooxidans merC gene cloned in Escherichia coli

    SciTech Connect

    Kusano, Tomonobu Akita Prefectural College of Agriculture ); Ji, Guangyong; Silver, S. ); Inoue, Chihiro )

    1990-05-01

    Mercuric reductase activity determined by the Thiobacillus ferrooxidans merA gene (cloned and expressed constitutively in Escherichia coli) was measured by volatilization of {sup 203}Hg{sup 2+}. (The absence of a merR regulatory gene in the cloned Thiobacillus mer determinant provides a basis for the constitutive synthesis of this system.) In the absence of the Thiobacillus merC transport gene, the mercury volatilization activity was cryptic and was not seen with whole cells but only with sonication-disrupted cells. The Thiobacillus merC transport function was compared with transport via the merT-merP system of plasmid pDU1358. Both systems, cloned and expressed in E. coli, governed enhanced uptake of {sup 203}Hg{sup 2+} in a temperature- and concentration-dependent fashion. Uptake via MerT-MerP was greater and conferred greater hypersensitivity to Hg{sup 2+} than did uptake with MerC. Mercury uptake was inhibited by N-ethylmaleimide but not by EDTA. Ag{sup +} salts inhibited mercury uptake by the MerT-MerP system but did not inhibit uptake via MerC. Radioactive mercury accumulated by the MerT-MerP and by the MerC systems was exchangeable with nonradioactive Hg{sup 2+}.

  14. Computational Performance Assessment of k-mer Counting Algorithms.

    PubMed

    Pérez, Nelson; Gutierrez, Miguel; Vera, Nelson

    2016-04-01

    This article is about the assessment of several tools for k-mer counting, with the purpose to create a reference framework for bioinformatics researchers to identify computational requirements, parallelizing, advantages, disadvantages, and bottlenecks of each of the algorithms proposed in the tools. The k-mer counters evaluated in this article were BFCounter, DSK, Jellyfish, KAnalyze, KHMer, KMC2, MSPKmerCounter, Tallymer, and Turtle. Measured parameters were the following: RAM occupied space, processing time, parallelization, and read and write disk access. A dataset consisting of 36,504,800 reads was used corresponding to the 14th human chromosome. The assessment was performed for two k-mer lengths: 31 and 55. Obtained results were the following: pure Bloom filter-based tools and disk-partitioning techniques showed a lesser RAM use. The tools that took less execution time were the ones that used disk-partitioning techniques. The techniques that made the major parallelization were the ones that used disk partitioning, hash tables with lock-free approach, or multiple hash tables. PMID:26982880

  15. Replication and shedding of MERS-CoV in Jamaican fruit bats (Artibeus jamaicensis).

    PubMed

    Munster, Vincent J; Adney, Danielle R; van Doremalen, Neeltje; Brown, Vienna R; Miazgowicz, Kerri L; Milne-Price, Shauna; Bushmaker, Trenton; Rosenke, Rebecca; Scott, Dana; Hawkinson, Ann; de Wit, Emmie; Schountz, Tony; Bowen, Richard A

    2016-01-01

    The emergence of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) highlights the zoonotic potential of Betacoronaviruses. Investigations into the origin of MERS-CoV have focused on two potential reservoirs: bats and camels. Here, we investigated the role of bats as a potential reservoir for MERS-CoV. In vitro, the MERS-CoV spike glycoprotein interacted with Jamaican fruit bat (Artibeus jamaicensis) dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (DPP4) receptor and MERS-CoV replicated efficiently in Jamaican fruit bat cells, suggesting there is no restriction at the receptor or cellular level for MERS-CoV. To shed light on the intrinsic host-virus relationship, we inoculated 10 Jamaican fruit bats with MERS-CoV. Although all bats showed evidence of infection, none of the bats showed clinical signs of disease. Virus shedding was detected in the respiratory and intestinal tract for up to 9 days. MERS-CoV replicated transiently in the respiratory and, to a lesser extent, the intestinal tracts and internal organs; with limited histopathological changes observed only in the lungs. Analysis of the innate gene expression in the lungs showed a moderate, transient induction of expression. Our results indicate that MERS-CoV maintains the ability to replicate in bats without clinical signs of disease, supporting the general hypothesis of bats as ancestral reservoirs for MERS-CoV. PMID:26899616

  16. MERS coronavirus induces apoptosis in kidney and lung by upregulating Smad7 and FGF2.

    PubMed

    Yeung, Man-Lung; Yao, Yanfeng; Jia, Lilong; Chan, Jasper F W; Chan, Kwok-Hung; Cheung, Kwok-Fan; Chen, Honglin; Poon, Vincent K M; Tsang, Alan K L; To, Kelvin K W; Yiu, Ming-Kwong; Teng, Jade L L; Chu, Hin; Zhou, Jie; Zhang, Qing; Deng, Wei; Lau, Susanna K P; Lau, Johnson Y N; Woo, Patrick C Y; Chan, Tak-Mao; Yung, Susan; Zheng, Bo-Jian; Jin, Dong-Yan; Mathieson, Peter W; Qin, Chuan; Yuen, Kwok-Yung

    2016-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) causes sporadic zoonotic disease and healthcare-associated outbreaks in human. MERS is often complicated by acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and multi-organ failure(1,2). The high incidence of renal failure in MERS is a unique clinical feature not often found in other human coronavirus infections(3,4). Whether MERS-CoV infects the kidney and how it triggers renal failure are not understood(5,6). Here, we demonstrated renal infection and apoptotic induction by MERS-CoV in human ex vivo organ culture and a nonhuman primate model. High-throughput analysis revealed that the cellular genes most significantly perturbed by MERS-CoV have previously been implicated in renal diseases. Furthermore, MERS-CoV induced apoptosis through upregulation of Smad7 and fibroblast growth factor 2 (FGF2) expression in both kidney and lung cells. Conversely, knockdown of Smad7 effectively inhibited MERS-CoV replication and protected cells from virus-induced cytopathic effects. We further demonstrated that hyperexpression of Smad7 or FGF2 induced a strong apoptotic response in kidney cells. Common marmosets infected by MERS-CoV developed ARDS and disseminated infection in kidneys and other organs. Smad7 and FGF2 expression were elevated in the lungs and kidneys of the infected animals. Our results provide insights into the pathogenesis of MERS-CoV and host targets for treatment. PMID:27572168

  17. Replication and shedding of MERS-CoV in Jamaican fruit bats (Artibeus jamaicensis)

    PubMed Central

    Munster, Vincent J.; Adney, Danielle R.; van Doremalen, Neeltje; Brown, Vienna R.; Miazgowicz, Kerri L.; Milne-Price, Shauna; Bushmaker, Trenton; Rosenke, Rebecca; Scott, Dana; Hawkinson, Ann; de Wit, Emmie; Schountz, Tony; Bowen, Richard A.

    2016-01-01

    The emergence of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) highlights the zoonotic potential of Betacoronaviruses. Investigations into the origin of MERS-CoV have focused on two potential reservoirs: bats and camels. Here, we investigated the role of bats as a potential reservoir for MERS-CoV. In vitro, the MERS-CoV spike glycoprotein interacted with Jamaican fruit bat (Artibeus jamaicensis) dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (DPP4) receptor and MERS-CoV replicated efficiently in Jamaican fruit bat cells, suggesting there is no restriction at the receptor or cellular level for MERS-CoV. To shed light on the intrinsic host-virus relationship, we inoculated 10 Jamaican fruit bats with MERS-CoV. Although all bats showed evidence of infection, none of the bats showed clinical signs of disease. Virus shedding was detected in the respiratory and intestinal tract for up to 9 days. MERS-CoV replicated transiently in the respiratory and, to a lesser extent, the intestinal tracts and internal organs; with limited histopathological changes observed only in the lungs. Analysis of the innate gene expression in the lungs showed a moderate, transient induction of expression. Our results indicate that MERS-CoV maintains the ability to replicate in bats without clinical signs of disease, supporting the general hypothesis of bats as ancestral reservoirs for MERS-CoV. PMID:26899616

  18. Segmented K-mer and its application on similarity analysis of mitochondrial genome sequences.

    PubMed

    Yu, Hong-Jie

    2013-04-15

    K-mer-based approach has been widely used in similarity analyses so as to discover similarity/dissimilarity among different biological sequences. In this study, we have improved the traditional K-mer method, and introduce a segmented K-mer approach (s-K-mer). After each primary sequence is divided into several segments, we simultaneously transform all these segments into corresponding K-mer-based vectors. In this approach, it is vital how to determine the optimal combination of distance metric with the number of K and the number of segments, i.e., (K(⁎), s(⁎), and d(⁎)). Based on the cascaded feature vectors transformed from s(⁎) segmented sequences, we analyze 34 mammalian genome sequences using the proposed s-K-mer approach. Meanwhile, we compare the results of s-K-mer with those of traditional K-mer. The contrastive analysis results demonstrate that s-K-mer approach outperforms the traditionally K-mer method on similarity analysis among different species. PMID:23353775

  19. Evaluation of MerCAP for Power Plant Mercury Control

    SciTech Connect

    Carl Richardson

    2008-09-30

    This report is submitted to the U.S. Department of Energy National Energy Technology Laboratory (DOE-NETL) as part of Cooperative Agreement DE-FC26-03NT41993, 'Evaluation of EPRI's MerCAP{trademark} Technology for Power Plant Mercury Control'. This project has investigated the mercury removal performance of EPRI's Mercury Capture by Amalgamation Process (MerCAP{trademark}) technology. Test programs were conducted to evaluate gold-based MerCAP{trademark} at Great River Energy's Stanton Station Unit 10 (Site 1), which fired both North Dakota lignite (NDL) and Power River Basin (PRB) coal during the testing period, and at Georgia Power's Plant Yates Unit 1 (Site 2) [Georgia Power is a subsidiary of The Southern Company] which fires a low sulfur Eastern bituminous coal. Additional tests were carried out at Alabama Power's Plant Miller, which fires Powder River Basin Coal, to evaluate a carbon-based MerCAP{trademark} process for removing mercury from flue gas downstream of an electrostatic precipitator [Alabama Power is a subsidiary of The Southern Company]. A full-scale gold-based sorbent array was installed in the clean-air plenum of a single baghouse compartment at GRE's Stanton Station Unit 10, thereby treating 1/10th of the unit's exhaust gas flow. The substrates that were installed were electroplated gold screens oriented parallel to the flue gas flow. The sorbent array was initially installed in late August of 2004, operating continuously until its removal in July 2006, after nearly 23 months. The initial 4 months of operation were conducted while the host unit was burning North Dakota lignite (NDL). In November 2004, the host unit switched fuel to burn Powder River Basin (PRB) subbituminous coal and continued to burn the PRB fuel for the final 19 months of this program. Tests were conducted at Site 1 to evaluate the impacts of flue gas flow rate, sorbent plate spacing, sorbent pre-cleaning and regeneration, and spray dryer operation on Mer

  20. Development of a mediated whole cell-based electrochemical biosensor for joint toxicity assessment of multi-pollutants using a mixed microbial consortium.

    PubMed

    Gao, Guanyue; Qian, Jun; Fang, Deyu; Yu, Yuan; Zhi, Jinfang

    2016-06-14

    Since most risk assessment for toxicants is based on individual single-species test, the deduction of such results to ecosystem evaluation is afflicted with uncertainties. Herein, we successfully developed a p-benzoquinone mediated whole-cell electrochemical biosensor for multi-pollutants toxicological analysis by co-immobilizing mixed strains of microorganism, including Escherichia coli (gram-negative bacteria), Bacillus subtilis (gram-positive bacteria) and Saccharomyces cerevisiae (fungus). The individual and combined toxicities of heavy metal ions (Cu(2+), Cd(2+)), phenol (3,5-dichlorophenol) and pesticides (Ametryn, Acephate) were examined. The experimental results showed that the order of toxicity for individual toxicant was ranked as Cu(2+) > 3,5-dichlorophenol (DCP) > Ametryn > Cd(2+) > Acephate. Then the toxic unit (TU) model was applied to determine the nature of toxicological interaction of the toxicants which can be classified as concentration additive (IC50mix = 1TU), synergistic (IC50mix < 1TU) and antagonistic (IC50mix > 1TU) responses. The binary combination of Cu(2+) + Cd(2+), Cu(2+) + DCP, Cu(2+) + Acephate, DCP + Acephate, Acephate + Ametryn were analyzed and the three kind of joint toxicity effects (i.e. additive, synergistic and antagonistic) mentioned above were observed according to the dose-response relationship. The results indicate that the whole-cell electrochemical biosensor based on mixed microbial consortium is more reasonable to reflect the joint biotoxicity of multi-pollutants existing in real wastewater, and combined effects of toxicants is extremely necessary to be taken into account in ecological risk assessment. Thus, present study has provided a promising approach to the quality assessment of wastewater and a reliable way for early risk warning of acute biotoxicity. PMID:27181640

  1. Electrochemical Characterization of a Novel Exoelectrogenic Bacterium Strain SCS5, Isolated from a Mediator-Less Microbial Fuel Cell and Phylogenetically Related to Aeromonas jandaei

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, Subed Chandra Dev; Feng, Cuijie; Li, Jiangwei; Hu, Anyi; Wang, Han; Qin, Dan; Yu, Chang-Ping

    2016-01-01

    A facultative anaerobic bacterium, designated as strain SCS5, was isolated from the anodic biofilm of a mediator-less microbial fuel cell using acetate as the electron donor and α-FeOOH as the electron acceptor. The isolate was Gram-negative, motile, and shaped as short rods (0.9–1.3 μm in length and 0.4–0.5 μm in width). A phylogenetic analysis of the 16S rRNA, gyrB, and rpoD genes suggested that strain SCS5 belonged to the Aeromonas genus in the Aeromonadaceae family and exhibited the highest 16S rRNA gene sequence similarity (99.45%) with Aeromonas jandaei ATCC 49568. However, phenotypic, cellular fatty acid profile, and DNA G+C content analyses revealed that there were some distinctions between strain SCS5 and the type strain A. jandaei ATCC 49568. The optimum growth temperature, pH, and NaCl (%) for strain SCS5 were 35°C, 7.0, and 0.5% respectively. The DNA G+C content of strain SCS5 was 59.18%. The isolate SCS5 was capable of reducing insoluble iron oxide (α-FeOOH) and transferring electrons to extracellular material (the carbon electrode). The electrochemical activity of strain SCS5 was corroborated by cyclic voltammetry and a Raman spectroscopic analysis. The cyclic voltammogram of strain SCS5 revealed two pairs of oxidation-reduction peaks under anaerobic and aerobic conditions. In contrast, no redox pair was observed for A. jandaei ATCC 49568. Thus, isolated strain SCS5 is a novel exoelectrogenic bacterium phylogenetically related to A. jandaei, but shows distinct electrochemical activity from its close relative A. jandaei ATCC 49568. PMID:27396922

  2. Aberrant Mer receptor tyrosine kinase expression contributes to leukemogenesis in acute myeloid leukemia

    PubMed Central

    Lee-Sherick, A B; Eisenman, K M; Sather, S; McGranahan, A; Armistead, P M; McGary, C S; Hunsucker, S A; Schlegel, J; Martinson, H; Cannon, C; Keating, A K; Earp, H S; Liang, X; DeRyckere, D; Graham, D K

    2013-01-01

    Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) continues to be extremely difficult to treat successfully, and the unacceptably low overall survival rates mandate that we assess new potential therapies to ameliorate poor clinical response to conventional therapy. Abnormal tyrosine kinase activation in AML has been associated with poor prognosis and provides strategic targets for novel therapy development. We found that Mer receptor tyrosine kinase was over-expressed in a majority of pediatric (29/36, 80%) and adult (10/10, 100%) primary AML patient blasts at the time of diagnosis, and 100% of patient samples at the time of relapse. Mer was also found to be expressed in 12 of 14 AML cell lines (86%). In contrast, normal bone marrow myeloid precursors expressed little to no Mer. Following AML cell line stimulation with Gas6, a Mer ligand, we observed activation of prosurvival and proliferative signaling pathways, including phosphorylation of ERK1/2, p38, MSK1, CREB, ATF1, AKT and STAT6. To assess the phenotypic role of Mer in AML, two independent short-hairpin RNA (shRNA) constructs were used to decrease Mer expression in the AML cell lines Nomo-1 and Kasumi-1. Reduction of Mer protein levels significantly increased rates of myeloblast apoptosis two to threefold in response to serum starvation. Furthermore, myeloblasts with knocked-down Mer demonstrated decreased colony formation by 67–87%, relative to control cell lines (P<0.01). NOD-SCID-gamma mice transplanted with Nomo-1 myeloblasts with reduced levels of Mer had a significant prolongation in survival compared with mice transplanted with the parental or control cell lines (median survival 17 days in parental and control cell lines, versus 32–36 days in Mer knockdown cell lines, P<0.0001). These data suggest a role for Mer in acute myeloid leukemogenesis and indicate that targeted inhibition of Mer may be an effective therapeutic strategy in pediatric and adult AML. PMID:23474756

  3. Aberrant Mer receptor tyrosine kinase expression contributes to leukemogenesis in acute myeloid leukemia.

    PubMed

    Lee-Sherick, A B; Eisenman, K M; Sather, S; McGranahan, A; Armistead, P M; McGary, C S; Hunsucker, S A; Schlegel, J; Martinson, H; Cannon, C; Keating, A K; Earp, H S; Liang, X; DeRyckere, D; Graham, D K

    2013-11-14

    Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) continues to be extremely difficult to treat successfully, and the unacceptably low overall survival rates mandate that we assess new potential therapies to ameliorate poor clinical response to conventional therapy. Abnormal tyrosine kinase activation in AML has been associated with poor prognosis and provides strategic targets for novel therapy development. We found that Mer receptor tyrosine kinase was over-expressed in a majority of pediatric (29/36, 80%) and adult (10/10, 100%) primary AML patient blasts at the time of diagnosis, and 100% of patient samples at the time of relapse. Mer was also found to be expressed in 12 of 14 AML cell lines (86%). In contrast, normal bone marrow myeloid precursors expressed little to no Mer. Following AML cell line stimulation with Gas6, a Mer ligand, we observed activation of prosurvival and proliferative signaling pathways, including phosphorylation of ERK1/2, p38, MSK1, CREB, ATF1, AKT and STAT6. To assess the phenotypic role of Mer in AML, two independent short-hairpin RNA (shRNA) constructs were used to decrease Mer expression in the AML cell lines Nomo-1 and Kasumi-1. Reduction of Mer protein levels significantly increased rates of myeloblast apoptosis two to threefold in response to serum starvation. Furthermore, myeloblasts with knocked-down Mer demonstrated decreased colony formation by 67-87%, relative to control cell lines (P<0.01). NOD-SCID-gamma mice transplanted with Nomo-1 myeloblasts with reduced levels of Mer had a significant prolongation in survival compared with mice transplanted with the parental or control cell lines (median survival 17 days in parental and control cell lines, versus 32-36 days in Mer knockdown cell lines, P<0.0001). These data suggest a role for Mer in acute myeloid leukemogenesis and indicate that targeted inhibition of Mer may be an effective therapeutic strategy in pediatric and adult AML. PMID:23474756

  4. MERS-CoV in a healthcare worker in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia: an index case investigation.

    PubMed

    Shalhoub, S; Abdraboh, S; Palma, R; AlSharif, H; Assiri, N

    2016-07-01

    In September 2015, a confirmed case of Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) was diagnosed in a healthcare worker in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Given the absence of confirmed MERS cases in Jeddah at the time, an epidemiological index case investigation took place. The investigation identified a probable source of an index case who had been in hospital in Jordan in August 2015 while there was an ongoing MERS outbreak and who then subsequently sought medical care in Jeddah. PMID:27210272

  5. Disk-based k-mer counting on a PC

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The k-mer counting problem, which is to build the histogram of occurrences of every k-symbol long substring in a given text, is important for many bioinformatics applications. They include developing de Bruijn graph genome assemblers, fast multiple sequence alignment and repeat detection. Results We propose a simple, yet efficient, parallel disk-based algorithm for counting k-mers. Experiments show that it usually offers the fastest solution to the considered problem, while demanding a relatively small amount of memory. In particular, it is capable of counting the statistics for short-read human genome data, in input gzipped FASTQ file, in less than 40 minutes on a PC with 16 GB of RAM and 6 CPU cores, and for long-read human genome data in less than 70 minutes. On a more powerful machine, using 32 GB of RAM and 32 CPU cores, the tasks are accomplished in less than half the time. No other algorithm for most tested settings of this problem and mammalian-size data can accomplish this task in comparable time. Our solution also belongs to memory-frugal ones; most competitive algorithms cannot efficiently work on a PC with 16 GB of memory for such massive data. Conclusions By making use of cheap disk space and exploiting CPU and I/O parallelism we propose a very competitive k-mer counting procedure, called KMC. Our results suggest that judicious resource management may allow to solve at least some bioinformatics problems with massive data on a commodity personal computer. PMID:23679007

  6. Planetary GIS on the Web for the MER 2003 Landers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hare, T. M.; Tanaka, K. L.; Skinner, J. A.

    2001-01-01

    PIGWAD or "Planetary Interactive GIS-on-the-Web Analyzable Database," has been operational since May of 1999. It currently provides GIS database support for the research and academic planetary science communities. We are now focused on creating a Mars Exploration Rover (MER) web-based landing-site analysis page. Along with the NASA Ames Research Center's web site, the PIGWAD web server also contains mission information including engineering constraints. The marriage of these two web sites gives scientists a great resource of information to analyze for landing-site selection.

  7. Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) entry inhibitors targeting spike protein.

    PubMed

    Xia, Shuai; Liu, Qi; Wang, Qian; Sun, Zhiwu; Su, Shan; Du, Lanying; Ying, Tianlei; Lu, Lu; Jiang, Shibo

    2014-12-19

    The recent outbreak of Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection has led to more than 800 laboratory-confirmed MERS cases with a high case fatality rate (∼35%), posing a serious threat to global public health and calling for the development of effective and safe therapeutic and prophylactic strategies to treat and prevent MERS-CoV infection. Here we discuss the most recent studies on the structure of the MERS-CoV spike protein and its role in virus binding and entry, and the development of MERS-CoV entry/fusion inhibitors targeting the S1 subunit, particularly the receptor-binding domain (RBD), and the S2 subunit, especially the HR1 region, of the MERS-CoV spike protein. We then look ahead to future applications of these viral entry/fusion inhibitors, either alone or in combination with specific and nonspecific MERS-CoV replication inhibitors, for the treatment and prevention of MERS-CoV infection. PMID:25451066

  8. CoMeta: classification of metagenomes using k-mers.

    PubMed

    Kawulok, Jolanta; Deorowicz, Sebastian

    2015-01-01

    Nowadays, the study of environmental samples has been developing rapidly. Characterization of the environment composition broadens the knowledge about the relationship between species composition and environmental conditions. An important element of extracting the knowledge of the sample composition is to compare the extracted fragments of DNA with sequences derived from known organisms. In the presented paper, we introduce an algorithm called CoMeta (Classification of metagenomes), which assigns a query read (a DNA fragment) into one of the groups previously prepared by the user. Typically, this is one of the taxonomic rank (e.g., phylum, genus), however prepared groups may contain sequences having various functions. In CoMeta, we used the exact method for read classification using short subsequences (k-mers) and fast program for indexing large set of k-mers. In contrast to the most popular methods based on BLAST, where the query is compared with each reference sequence, we begin the classification from the top of the taxonomy tree to reduce the number of comparisons. The presented experimental study confirms that CoMeta outperforms other programs used in this context. CoMeta is available at https://github.com/jkawulok/cometa under a free GNU GPL 2 license. PMID:25884504

  9. CoMeta: Classification of Metagenomes Using k-mers

    PubMed Central

    Kawulok, Jolanta; Deorowicz, Sebastian

    2015-01-01

    Nowadays, the study of environmental samples has been developing rapidly. Characterization of the environment composition broadens the knowledge about the relationship between species composition and environmental conditions. An important element of extracting the knowledge of the sample composition is to compare the extracted fragments of DNA with sequences derived from known organisms. In the presented paper, we introduce an algorithm called CoMeta (Classification of metagenomes), which assigns a query read (a DNA fragment) into one of the groups previously prepared by the user. Typically, this is one of the taxonomic rank (e.g., phylum, genus), however prepared groups may contain sequences having various functions. In CoMeta, we used the exact method for read classification using short subsequences (k-mers) and fast program for indexing large set of k-mers. In contrast to the most popular methods based on BLAST, where the query is compared with each reference sequence, we begin the classification from the top of the taxonomy tree to reduce the number of comparisons. The presented experimental study confirms that CoMeta outperforms other programs used in this context. CoMeta is available at https://github.com/jkawulok/cometa under a free GNU GPL 2 license. PMID:25884504

  10. mer and fac isomerism in tris chelate diimine metal complexes.

    PubMed

    Dabb, Serin L; Fletcher, Nicholas C

    2015-03-14

    In this perspective, we highlight the issue of meridional (mer) and facial (fac) orientation of asymmetrical diimines in tris-chelate transition metal complexes. Diimine ligands have long been the workhorse of coordination chemistry, and whilst there are now good strategies to isolate materials where the inherent metal centered chirality is under almost complete control, and systematic methodologies to isolate heteroleptic complexes, the conceptually simple geometrical isomerism has not been widely investigated. In systems where the two donor atoms are significantly different in terms of the σ-donor and π-accepting ability, the fac isomer is likely to be the thermodynamic product. For the diimine complexes with two trigonal planar nitrogen atoms there is much more subtlety to the system, and external factors such as the solvent, lattice packing and the various steric considerations play a delicate role in determining the observed and isolable product. In this article we discuss the possibilities to control the isomeric ratio in labile systems, consider the opportunities to separate inert complexes and discuss the observed differences in their spectroscopic properties. Finally we report on the ligand orientation in supramolecular systems where facial coordination leads to simple regular structures such as helicates and tetrahedra, but the ability of the ligand system to adopt a mer orientation enables self-assembled structures of considerable beauty and complexity. PMID:25600485

  11. Overlapping MERS and mild AESD caused by HHV-6 infection.

    PubMed

    Hatanaka, Mari; Kashiwagi, Mitsuru; Tanabe, Takuya; Nakahara, Hiroshi; Ohta, Kazumi; Tamai, Hiroshi

    2015-03-01

    We report the case of an overlapping encephalopathy syndrome consisting of clinically mild encephalitis/encephalopathy with a reversible splenial lesion (MERS) and a mild form of acute encephalopathy with biphasic seizures and late reduced diffusion (AESD) caused by human herpesvirus-6. A previously healthy 17-month-old girl was admitted to our hospital as a precaution because of seizures that had developed more than 25 hours (h) after fever. Brain diffusion-weighted images (DWI) showed high signal intensity in the central splenial region on Day 2. She regained consciousness 16 h after the second seizure. On Day 6, she had a secondary cluster of partial seizures. DWI showed resolution of the splenial lesion and revealed reduced diffusion in the fronto-subcortical white matter. She regained consciousness 36 h after the secondary cluster of seizures without any sequelae. A third DWI performed on Day 15 showed that the fronto-subcortical white matter lesions had completely disappeared. Based on the clinicoradiological findings, we diagnosed the patient with overlapping MERS and mild AESD. Our case, together with previous reports, suggests that patients can develop combined encephalopathy syndromes as a phenotype. Many encephalopathy syndromes have been established and classified; however, some may not present as independent syndromes. PMID:24856142

  12. Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV): animal to human interaction.

    PubMed

    Omrani, Ali S; Al-Tawfiq, Jaffar A; Memish, Ziad A

    2015-01-01

    The Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is a novel enzootic betacoronavirus that was first described in September 2012. The clinical spectrum of MERS-CoV infection in humans ranges from an asymptomatic or mild respiratory illness to severe pneumonia and multi-organ failure; overall mortality is around 35.7%. Bats harbour several betacoronaviruses that are closely related to MERS-CoV but more research is needed to establish the relationship between bats and MERS-CoV. The seroprevalence of MERS-CoV antibodies is very high in dromedary camels in Eastern Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. MERS-CoV RNA and viable virus have been isolated from dromedary camels, including some with respiratory symptoms. Furthermore, near-identical strains of MERS-CoV have been isolated from epidemiologically linked humans and camels, confirming inter-transmission, most probably from camels to humans. Though inter-human spread within health care settings is responsible for the majority of reported MERS-CoV cases, the virus is incapable at present of causing sustained human-to-human transmission. Clusters can be readily controlled with implementation of appropriate infection control procedures. Phylogenetic and sequencing data strongly suggest that MERS-CoV originated from bat ancestors after undergoing a recombination event in the spike protein, possibly in dromedary camels in Africa, before its exportation to the Arabian Peninsula along the camel trading routes. MERS-CoV serosurveys are needed to investigate possible unrecognized human infections in Africa. Amongst the important measures to control MERS-CoV spread are strict regulation of camel movement, regular herd screening and isolation of infected camels, use of personal protective equipment by camel handlers and enforcing rules banning all consumption of unpasteurized camel milk and urine. PMID:26924345

  13. Statistical Properties of Short Subsequences in Microbial Genomes and Their Link to Pathogen Identification and Evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Meizhuo; Putonti, Catherine; Chumakov, Sergei; Gupta, Adhish; Fox, George E.; Graur, Dan; Fofanov, Yuriy

    2006-09-01

    Numerous sequencing projects have unveiled partial and full microbial genomes. The data produced far exceeds one person's analytical capabilities and thus requires the power of computing. A significant amount of work has focused on the diversity of statistical characteristics along microbial genomic sequences, e.g. codon bias, G+C content, the frequencies of short subsequences (n-mers), etc. Based upon the results of these studies, two observations were made: (1) there exists a correlation between regions of unusual statistical properties, e.g. difference in codon bias, etc., from the rest of the genomic sequence, and evolutionary significant regions, e.g. regions of horizontal gene transfer; and (2) because no two microbial genomes look statistically identical, statistical properties can be used to distinguish between genomic sequences. Recently, we conducted extensive analysis on the presence/absence of n-mers for many microbial genomes as well as several viral and eukaryotic genomes. This analysis revealed that the presence of n-mers in all genomes considered (in the range of n, when the condition M<<4n holds, where M is the genome length) can be treated as a nearly random and independent process. Thus we hypothesize that one may use relatively small sets of randomly picked n-mers for differentiating between different microorganisms. Recently, we analyzed the frequency of appearance of all 8- to 12-mers present in each of the 200+ publicly available microbial genomes. For nearly all of the genomes under consideration, we observed that some n-mers are present much more frequently than expected: from 50 to over a thousand copies. Upon closer inspection of these sequences, we found several cases in which an overrepresented n-mer exhibits a bias towards being located in the coding or being located in the non-coding region. Although the evolutionary reason for the conservation of such sequences remains unclear, in some cases it is plausible to believe that sequences

  14. MERS epidemiological investigation to detect potential mode of transmission in the 178th MERS confirmed case in Pyeongtaek, Korea

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Kyujin; Ki, Moran; Lee, Eun Gyu; Lee, Soon Young; Yoo, Byoungin; Choi, Jong Hyuk

    2015-01-01

    Most cases of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) infection in Korea (outbreak: May 11-July 4, 2015) occurred in hospital settings, with uncertain transmission modes in some cases. We performed an in-depth investigation epidemiological survey on the 178th case to determine the precise mode of transmission. A 29- year-old man living in Pyeongtaek presented on June 16 with a febrile sensation, chills, and myalgia. Upon confirmatory diagnosis on June 23, he was treated in an isolation room and discharged on July 2 after cure. An epidemiological investigation of all possible infection routes indicated two likely modes of transmission: exposure to MERS in Pyeongtaek St. Mary’s Hospital during a visit to his hospitalized father (May 18-29), and infection through frequent contact with his father between the latter’s referral to Pyeongtaek Good Samaritan Bagae Hospital for treatment without confirmatory diagnosis until his death (May 29-June 6). Although lack of clear proof or evidence to the contrary does not allow a definitive conclusion, all other possibilities could be excluded by epidemiological inferences. While it is impossible to trace back the modes of transmission of all cases in a large-scale outbreak, case-by-case tracking and isolation of infected individuals and those in close contact with them is important in preventing the spread. Efforts should be made to establish a methodology for rapid tracking of all possible contacts and elimination-based identification of the precise modes of transmission. PMID:26493651

  15. Knowledge and Apprehension of Dental Patients about MERS-A Questionnaire Survey

    PubMed Central

    Ashok, Nipun; Rodrigues, Jean Clare; Azouni, Khalid; Darwish, Shorouk; Abuderman, Abdulwahab; Alkaabba, Abdul Aziz Fahad

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) is a disease caused by beta corona virus. From April 11th to 9th June 2014, World Health Organization (WHO) reported a total of 402 laboratory confirmed cases of MERS from KSA, out of which 132 cases were reported from Riyadh alone. Aim The aim of this study was to assess the knowledge and apprehension of patients about MERS visiting Al Farabi College of Dentistry, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Materials and Methods A cross-sectional questionnaire based survey was conducted which consisted of 10 self-prepared questions. A total of 404 patients participated in this study. Results Three hundred and forty patients had heard about MERS. Nearly a quarter of the patients (25.74%) were apprehensive about undergoing dental treatment because of MERS. A little more than half of the patients (50.99%) knew that camel was a source of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome-Corona virus. Most of the patients (80.72%) were aware of the infection control measures to be followed by dentist and 138 patients claimed they took some precaution when present inside the dental college. Conclusion Majority of the patients had heard about MERS and was aware of the infection control measures. However, some patients were apprehensive about undergoing dental treatment because of MERS. Further steps need to be taken to educate the patient’s about transmission of MERS and infection control measures in a dental hospital. PMID:27437361

  16. Evolutionary Dynamics of MERS-CoV: Potential Recombination, Positive Selection and Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Zhao; Shen, Libing; Gu, Xun

    2016-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) belongs to beta group of coronavirus and was first discovered in 2012. MERS-CoV can infect multiple host species and cause severe diseases in human. We conducted a series of phylogenetic and bioinformatic analyses to study the evolution dynamics of MERS-CoV among different host species with genomic data. Our analyses show: 1) 28 potential recombinant sequences were detected and they can be classified into seven potential recombinant types; 2) The spike (S) protein of MERS-CoV was under strong positive selection when MERS-CoV transmitted from their natural host to human; 3) Six out of nine positive selection sites detected in spike (S) protein are located in its receptor-binding domain which is in direct contact with host cells; 4) MERS-CoV frequently transmitted back and forth between human and camel after it had acquired the human-camel infection capability. Together, these results suggest that potential recombination events might have happened frequently during MERS-CoV’s evolutionary history and the positive selection sites in MERS-CoV’s S protein might enable it to infect human. PMID:27142087

  17. 19F-NMR reveals metal and operator-induced allostery in MerR.

    PubMed

    Song, Lingyun; Teng, Quincy; Phillips, Robert S; Brewer, John M; Summers, Anne O

    2007-08-01

    Metalloregulators of the MerR family activate transcription upon metal binding by underwinding the operator-promoter DNA to permit open complex formation by pre-bound RNA polymerase. Historically, MerR's allostery has been monitored only indirectly via nuclease sensitivity or by fluorescent nucleotide probes and was very specific for Hg(II), although purified MerR binds several thiophilic metals. To observe directly MerR's ligand-induced behavior we made 2-fluorotyrosine-substituted MerR and found similar, minor changes in (19)F chemical shifts of tyrosine residues in the free protein exposed to Hg(II), Cd(II) or Zn(II). However, DNA binding elicits large chemical shift changes in MerR's tyrosine residues and in DNA-bound MerR Hg(II) provokes changes very distinct from those of Cd(II) or Zn(II). These chemical shift changes and other biophysical and phenotypic properties of wild-type MerR and relevant mutants reveal elements of an allosteric network that enables the coordination state of the metal binding site to direct metal-specific movements in the distant DNA binding site and the DNA-bound state also to affect the metal binding domain. PMID:17560604

  18. Exportations of Symptomatic Cases of MERS-CoV Infection to Countries outside the Middle East.

    PubMed

    Carias, Cristina; O'Hagan, Justin J; Jewett, Amy; Gambhir, Manoj; Cohen, Nicole J; Haber, Yoni; Pesik, Nicki; Swerdlow, David L

    2016-04-01

    In 2012, an outbreak of infection with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), was detected in the Arabian Peninsula. Modeling can produce estimates of the expected annual number of symptomatic cases of MERS-CoV infection exported and the likelihood of exportation from source countries in the Middle East to countries outside the region. PMID:27358972

  19. Exportations of Symptomatic Cases of MERS-CoV Infection to Countries outside the Middle East

    PubMed Central

    O’Hagan, Justin J.; Jewett, Amy; Gambhir, Manoj; Cohen, Nicole J.; Haber, Yoni; Pesik, Nicki; Swerdlow, David L.

    2016-01-01

    In 2012, an outbreak of infection with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), was detected in the Arabian Peninsula. Modeling can produce estimates of the expected annual number of symptomatic cases of MERS-CoV infection exported and the likelihood of exportation from source countries in the Middle East to countries outside the region. PMID:27358972

  20. Evolutionary Dynamics of MERS-CoV: Potential Recombination, Positive Selection and Transmission.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhao; Shen, Libing; Gu, Xun

    2016-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) belongs to beta group of coronavirus and was first discovered in 2012. MERS-CoV can infect multiple host species and cause severe diseases in human. We conducted a series of phylogenetic and bioinformatic analyses to study the evolution dynamics of MERS-CoV among different host species with genomic data. Our analyses show: 1) 28 potential recombinant sequences were detected and they can be classified into seven potential recombinant types; 2) The spike (S) protein of MERS-CoV was under strong positive selection when MERS-CoV transmitted from their natural host to human; 3) Six out of nine positive selection sites detected in spike (S) protein are located in its receptor-binding domain which is in direct contact with host cells; 4) MERS-CoV frequently transmitted back and forth between human and camel after it had acquired the human-camel infection capability. Together, these results suggest that potential recombination events might have happened frequently during MERS-CoV's evolutionary history and the positive selection sites in MERS-CoV's S protein might enable it to infect human. PMID:27142087

  1. The Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Transverse Impulse Rocket System (TIRS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    SanMartin, Alejandro Miguel; Bailey, Erik

    2005-01-01

    In a very short period of time the MER project successfully developed and tested a system, TIRS/DIMES, to improve the probability of success in the presence of large Martian winds. The successful development of TIRS/DIMES played a big role in the landing site selection process by enabling the landing of Spirit on Gusev crater, a site of very high scientific interest but with known high wind conditions. The performance of TIRS by Spirit at Gusev Crater was excellent. The velocity prediction error was small and Big TIRS was fired reducing the impact horizontal velocity from approximately 23 meters per second to approximately 11 meters per second, well within the airbag capabilities. The performance of TIRS by Opportunity at Meridiani was good. The velocity prediction error was rather large (approximately 6 meters per second, a less than 2 sigma value, but TIRS did not fire which was the correct action.

  2. MER-DIMES : a planetary landing application of computer vision

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cheng, Yang; Johnson, Andrew; Matthies, Larry

    2005-01-01

    During the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) landings, the Descent Image Motion Estimation System (DIMES) was used for horizontal velocity estimation. The DIMES algorithm combines measurements from a descent camera, a radar altimeter and an inertial measurement unit. To deal with large changes in scale and orientation between descent images, the algorithm uses altitude and attitude measurements to rectify image data to level ground plane. Feature selection and tracking is employed in the rectified data to compute the horizontal motion between images. Differences of motion estimates are then compared to inertial measurements to verify correct feature tracking. DIMES combines sensor data from multiple sources in a novel way to create a low-cost, robust and computationally efficient velocity estimation solution, and DIMES is the first use of computer vision to control a spacecraft during planetary landing. In this paper, the detailed implementation of the DIMES algorithm and the results from the two landings on Mars are presented.

  3. MER : from landing to six wheels on Mars ... twice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Krajewski, Joel; Burke, Kevin; Lewicki, Chris; Limonadi, Daniel; Trebi-Ollennu, Ashitey; Voorhees, Chris

    2005-01-01

    Application of the Pathfinder landing system design to enclose the much larger Mars Exploration Rover required a variety of Rover deployments to achieve the surface driving configuration. The project schedule demanded that software design, engineering model test, and flight hardware build to be accomplished in parallel. This challenge was met through (a) bounding unknown environments against which to design and test, (b) early mechanical prototype testing, (c) constraining the scope of on-board autonomy to survival-critical deployments, (d) executing a balance of nominal and off-nominal test cases, (e) developing off-nominal event mitigation techniques before landing, (f) flexible replanning in response to surprises during operations. Here is discussed several specific events encountered during initial MER surface operations.

  4. Receptor Tyrosine Kinases, TYRO3, AXL, and MER, Demonstrate Distinct Patterns and Complex Regulation of Ligand-induced Activation*

    PubMed Central

    Tsou, Wen-I; Nguyen, Khanh-Quynh N.; Calarese, Daniel A.; Garforth, Scott J.; Antes, Anita L.; Smirnov, Sergey V.; Almo, Steve C.; Birge, Raymond B.; Kotenko, Sergei V.

    2014-01-01

    TYRO3, AXL, and MER receptors (TAMs) are three homologous type I receptor-tyrosine kinases that are activated by endogenous ligands, protein S (PROS1) and growth arrest-specific gene 6 (GAS6). These ligands can either activate TAMs as soluble factors, or, in turn, opsonize phosphatidylserine (PS) on apoptotic cells (ACs) and serve as bridging molecules between ACs and TAMs. Abnormal expression and activation of TAMs have been implicated in promoting proliferation and survival of cancer cells, as well as in suppressing anti-tumor immunity. Despite the fact that TAM receptors share significant similarity, little is known about the specificity of interaction between TAM receptors and their ligands, particularly in the context of ACs, and about the functional diversity of TAM receptors. To study ligand-mediated activation of TAMs, we generated a series of reporter cell lines expressing chimeric TAM receptors. Using this system, we found that each TAM receptor has a unique pattern of interaction with and activation by GAS6 and PROS1, which is also differentially affected by the presence of ACs, PS-containing lipid vesicles and enveloped virus. We also demonstrated that γ-carboxylation of ligands is essential for the full activation of TAMs and that soluble immunoglobulin-like TAM domains act as specific ligand antagonists. These studies demonstrate that, despite their similarity, TYRO3, AXL, and MER are likely to perform distinct functions in both immunoregulation and the recognition and removal of ACs. PMID:25074926

  5. Expansion of quiescent lung adenocarcinoma CD8+ T cells by MUC1-8-mer peptide-T2 cell-β2 microglobulin complexes

    PubMed Central

    ATZIN-MÉNDEZ, J.A.; LÓPEZ-GONZÁLEZ, J.S.; BÁEZ, R.; ARENAS-DEL ANGEL, M.C.; MONTAÑO, L.F.; SILVA-ADAYA, D.; LASCURAIN, R.; GOROCICA, P.

    2016-01-01

    Adoptive immunotherapy requires the isolation of CD8+ T cells specific for tumor-associated antigens, their expansion in vitro and their transfusion to the patient to mediate a therapeutic effect. MUC1 is an important adenocarcinoma antigen immunogenic for T cells. The MUC1-derived SAPDTRPA (MUC1-8-mer) peptide is a potent epitope recognized by CD8+ T cells in murine models. Likewise, the T2 cell line has been used as an antigen-presenting cell to activate CD8+ T cells, but so far MUC1 has not been assessed in this context. We evaluated whether the MUC1-8-mer peptide can be presented by T2 cells to expand CD25+CD8+ T cells isolated from HLA-A2+ lung adenocarcinoma patients with stage III or IV tumors. The results showed that MUC1-8-mer peptide-loaded T2 cells activated CD8+ T cells from cancer HLA-A2+ patients when anti-CD2, anti-CD28 antibodies and IL-2 were added. The percentage of CD25+CD8+ T cells was 3-fold higher than those in the non-stimulated cells (P=0.018). HLA-A2+ patient cells showed a significant difference (2.3-fold higher) in activation status than HLA-A2+ healthy control cells (P=0.04). Moreover, 77.6% of MUC1-8-mer peptide-specific CD8+ T cells proliferated following a second stimulation with MUC1-8-mer peptide-loaded T2 cells after 10 days of cell culture. There were significant differences in the percentage of basal CD25+CD8+ T cells in relation to the cancer stage; this difference disappeared after MUC1-8-mer peptide stimulation. In conclusion, expansion of CD25+CD8+ T cells by MUC1-8 peptide-loaded T2 cells plus costimulatory signals via CD2, CD28 and IL-2 can be useful in adoptive immunotherapy. PMID:26498650

  6. MERS and the dromedary camel trade between Africa and the Middle East.

    PubMed

    Younan, M; Bornstein, S; Gluecks, I V

    2016-08-01

    Dromedary camels are the most likely source for the coronavirus that sporadically causes Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) in humans. Serological results from archived camel sera provide evidence for circulation of MERS coronavirus (MERS-CoV) among dromedary camels in the Greater Horn of Africa as far back as 1983 and in Saudi Arabia as far back as 1992. High seroprevalences of MERS-CoV antibodies and the high virus prevalence in Saudi Arabian dromedary camels indicate an endemicity of the virus in the Arabian Peninsula, which predates the 2012 human MERS index case. Saudi Arabian dromedary camels show significantly higher MERS-CoV carrier rates than dromedary camels imported from Africa. Two MERS-CoV lineages identified in Nigerian camels were found to be genetically distinct from those found in camels and humans in the Middle East. This supports the hypothesis that camel imports from Africa are not of significance for circulation of the virus in camel populations of the Arabian Peninsula. PMID:27324244

  7. Habitat management affects soil chemistry and allochthonous organic inputs mediating microbial structure and exo-enzyme activity in Wadden Sea salt-marsh soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mueller, Peter; Granse, Dirk; Thi Do, Hai; Weingartner, Magdalena; Nolte, Stefanie; Hoth, Stefan; Jensen, Kai

    2016-04-01

    The Wadden Sea (WS) region is Europe's largest wetland and home to approximately 20% of its salt marsh area. Mainland salt marshes of the WS are anthropogenically influenced systems and have traditionally been used for livestock grazing in wide parts. After foundation of WS National Parks in the late 1980s and early 1990s, artificial drainage has been abandoned; however, livestock grazing is still common in many areas of the National Parks and is under ongoing discussion as a habitat-management practice. While studies so far focused on effects of livestock grazing on biodiversity, little is known about how biogeochemical processes, element cycling, and particularly carbon sequestration are affected. Here, we present data from a recent field study focusing on grazing effects on soil properties, microbial exo-enzyme activity, microbial abundance and structure. Exo-enzyme activity was studied conducting digestive enzyme assays for various enzymes involved in C- and N cycling. Microbial abundance and structure was assessed measuring specific gene abundance of fungi and bacteria using quantitative PCR. Soil compaction induced by grazing led to higher bulk density and decreases in soil redox (∆ >100 mV). Soil pH was significantly lower in grazed parts. Further, the proportion of allochthonous organic matter (marine input) was significantly smaller in grazed vs. ungrazed sites, likely caused by a higher sediment trapping capacity of the taller vegetation in the ungrazed sites. Grazing induced changes in bulk density, pH and redox resulted in reduced activity of enzymes involved in microbial C acquisition; however, there was no grazing effect on enzymes involved in N acquisition. While changes in pH, bulk density or redox did not affect microbial abundance and structure, the relative amount of marine organic matter significantly reduced the relative abundance of fungi (F:B ratio). We conclude that livestock grazing directly affects microbial exo-enzyme activity, thus

  8. The MerR-Like Transcriptional Regulator BrlR Contributes to Pseudomonas aeruginosa Biofilm Tolerance

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Julie

    2012-01-01

    Biofilms are composed of surface-attached microbial communities. A hallmark of biofilms is their profound tolerance of antimicrobial agents. While biofilm drug tolerance has been considered to be multifactorial, our findings indicate, instead, that bacteria within biofilms employ a classical regulatory mechanism to resist the action of antimicrobial agents. Here we report that the transcriptional regulator BrlR, a member of the MerR family of multidrug transport activators, plays a role in the high-level drug tolerance of biofilms formed by Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Expression of brlR was found to be biofilm specific, with brlR inactivation not affecting biofilm formation, motility, or pslA expression but increasing ndvB expression. Inactivation of brlR rendered biofilms but not planktonic cells grown to exponential or stationary phase significantly more susceptible to hydrogen peroxide and five different classes of antibiotics by affecting the MICs and the recalcitrance of biofilms to killing by microbicidal antimicrobial agents. In contrast, overexpression of brlR rendered both biofilms and planktonic cells more tolerant to the same compounds. brlR expression in three cystic fibrosis (CF) isolates was elevated regardless of the mode of growth, suggesting a selection for constitutive brlR expression upon in vivo biofilm formation associated with chronic infections. Despite increased brlR expression, however, isolate CF1-8 was as susceptible to tobramycin as was a ΔbrlR mutant because of a nonsense mutation in brlR. Our results indicate for the first time that biofilms employ a specific regulatory mechanism to resist the action of antimicrobial agents in a BrlR-dependent manner which affects MIC and recalcitrance to killing by microbicidal antimicrobial agents. PMID:22730129

  9. Sero-epidemiology of MERS coronavirus in Saudi Arabia (1993) and Australia (2014) and characterization of assay specificity

    PubMed Central

    Hemida, MG; Perera, RAPM; Al Jassim, RAM; Kayali, G; Siu, LY; Wang, P; Chu, DKW; Perlman, S; Ali, MA; Alnaeem, A; Poon, LLM; Saif, L; Peiris, M

    2015-01-01

    Pseudoparticle virus neutralization (ppNT) and a conventional microneutralization (MN) assays are specific for detecting antibodies to MERS coronavirus (MERS-CoV) when used in sero-epidemiological studies in animals. Genetically diverse MERS-CoV appear antigenically similar in MN tests. We confirm that MERS-CoV has been circulating in dromedaries in Saudi Arabia in 1993. Preliminary data suggests that feral Australian dromedaries may be free of MERS-CoV but larger confirmatory studies are needed. PMID:24957744

  10. Prophylaxis With a Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV)-Specific Human Monoclonal Antibody Protects Rabbits From MERS-CoV Infection.

    PubMed

    Houser, Katherine V; Gretebeck, Lisa; Ying, Tianlei; Wang, Yanping; Vogel, Leatrice; Lamirande, Elaine W; Bock, Kevin W; Moore, Ian N; Dimitrov, Dimiter S; Subbarao, Kanta

    2016-05-15

    With >1600 documented human infections with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) and a case fatality rate of approximately 36%, medical countermeasures are needed to prevent and limit the disease. We examined the in vivo efficacy of the human monoclonal antibody m336, which has high neutralizing activity against MERS-CoV in vitro. m336 was administered to rabbits intravenously or intranasally before infection with MERS-CoV. Prophylaxis with m336 resulted in a reduction of pulmonary viral RNA titers by 40-9000-fold, compared with an irrelevant control antibody with little to no inflammation or viral antigen detected. This protection in rabbits supports further clinical development of m336. PMID:26941283