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Sample records for acid-soluble spore protein

  1. Small acid soluble proteins for rapid spore identification.

    SciTech Connect

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

    2006-12-01

    This one year LDRD addressed the problem of rapid characterization of bacterial spores such as those from the genus Bacillus, the group that contains pathogenic spores such as B. anthracis. In this effort we addressed the feasibility of using a proteomics based approach to spore characterization using a subset of conserved spore proteins known as the small acid soluble proteins or SASPs. We proposed developing techniques that built on our previous expertise in microseparations to rapidly characterize or identify spores. An alternative SASP extraction method was developed that was amenable to both the subsequent fluorescent labeling required for laser-induced fluorescence detection and the low ionic strength requirements for isoelectric focusing. For the microseparations, both capillary isoelectric focusing and chip gel electrophoresis were employed. A variety of methods were evaluated to improve the molecular weight resolution for the SASPs, which are in a molecular weight range that is not well resolved by the current methods. Isoelectric focusing was optimized and employed to resolve the SASPs using UV absorbance detection. Proteomic signatures of native wild type Bacillus spores and clones genetically engineered to produce altered SASP patterns were assessed by slab gel electrophoresis, capillary isoelectric focusing with absorbance detection as well as microchip based gel electrophoresis employing sensitive laser-induced fluorescence detection.

  2. Prevention of DNA damage in spores and in vitro by small, acid-soluble proteins from Bacillus species.

    PubMed Central

    Fairhead, H; Setlow, B; Setlow, P

    1993-01-01

    The DNA in dormant spores of Bacillus species is saturated with a group of nonspecific DNA-binding proteins, termed alpha/beta-type small, acid-soluble spore proteins (SASP). These proteins alter DNA structure in vivo and in vitro, providing spore resistance to UV light. In addition, heat treatments (e.g., 85 degrees C for 30 min) which give little killing of wild-type spores of B. subtilis kill > 99% of spores which lack most alpha/beta-type SASP (termed alpha - beta - spores). Similar large differences in survival of wild-type and alpha - beta - spores were found at 90, 80, 65, 22, and 10 degrees C. After heat treatment (85 degrees C for 30 min) or prolonged storage (22 degrees C for 6 months) that gave > 99% killing of alpha - beta - spores, 10 to 20% of the survivors contained auxotrophic or asporogenous mutations. However, alpha - beta - spores heated for 30 min at 85 degrees C released no more dipicolinic acid than similarly heated wild-type spores (< 20% of the total dipicolinic acid) and triggered germination normally. In contrast, after a heat treatment (93 degrees C for 30 min) that gave > or = 99% killing of wild-type spores, < 1% of the survivors had acquired new obvious mutations, > 85% of the spore's dipicolinic acid had been released, and < 1% of the surviving spores could initiate spore germination. Analysis of DNA extracted from heated (85 degrees C, 30 min) and unheated wild-type spores and unheated alpha - beta - spores revealed very few single-strand breaks (< 1 per 20 kb) in the DNA. In contrast, the DNA from heated alpha- beta- spores had more than 10 single-strand breaks per 20 kb. These data suggest that binding of alpha/beta-type SASP to spore DNA in vivo greatly reduces DNA damage caused by heating, increasing spore heat resistance and long-term survival. While the precise nature of the initial DNA damage after heating of alpha- beta- spores that results in the single-strand breaks is not clear, a likely possibility is DNA depurination. A

  3. Roles of the Major, Small, Acid-Soluble Spore Proteins and Spore-Specific and Universal DNA Repair Mechanisms in Resistance of Bacillus subtilis Spores to Ionizing Radiation from X Rays and High-Energy Charged-Particle Bombardment▿

    PubMed Central

    Moeller, Ralf; Setlow, Peter; Horneck, Gerda; Berger, Thomas; Reitz, Günther; Rettberg, Petra; Doherty, Aidan J.; Okayasu, Ryuichi; Nicholson, Wayne L.

    2008-01-01

    The role of DNA repair by nonhomologous end joining (NHEJ), homologous recombination, spore photoproduct lyase, and DNA polymerase I and genome protection via α/β-type small, acid-soluble spore proteins (SASP) in Bacillus subtilis spore resistance to accelerated heavy ions (high-energy charged [HZE] particles) and X rays has been studied. Spores deficient in NHEJ and α/β-type SASP were significantly more sensitive to HZE particle bombardment and X-ray irradiation than were the recA, polA, and splB mutant and wild-type spores, indicating that NHEJ provides an efficient DNA double-strand break repair pathway during spore germination and that the loss of the α/β-type SASP leads to a significant radiosensitivity to ionizing radiation, suggesting the essential function of these spore proteins as protectants of spore DNA against ionizing radiation. PMID:18055591

  4. Cloning and nucleotide sequencing of genes for three small, acid-soluble proteins from Bacillus subtilis spores.

    PubMed Central

    Connors, M J; Mason, J M; Setlow, P

    1986-01-01

    Three Bacillus subtilis genes (termed sspA, sspB, and sspD) which code for small, acid-soluble spore proteins (SASPs) have been cloned, and their complete nucleotide sequence has been determined. The amino acid sequences of the SASPs coded for by these genes are similar to each other and to those of the SASP-1 of B. subtilis (coded for by the sspC gene) and the SASP-A/C family of B. megaterium. The sspA and sspB genes are expressed only in sporulation, in parallel with each other and with the sspC gene. Two regions upstream of the postulated transcription start sites for the sspA and B genes have significant homology with the analogous regions of the sspC gene and the SASP-A/C gene family. Purification of two of the three major B, subtilis SASPs (alpha and beta) and determination of their amino-terminal sequences indicated that the sspA gene codes for SASP-alpha and that the sspB gene codes for SASP-beta. This was confirmed by the introduction of deletion mutations into the cloned sspA and sspB genes and transfer of these deletions into the B. subtilis chromosome with concomitant loss of the wild-type gene. Images PMID:3009398

  5. Crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of the complex between a Bacillus subtilis α/β-type small acid-soluble spore protein and DNA

    SciTech Connect

    Bumbaca, Daniela; Kosman, Jeffrey; Setlow, Peter; Henderson, R. Keith; Jedrzejas, Mark J.

    2007-06-01

    An α/β-type small, acid-soluble spore protein (SASP) from Bacillus subtilis, a major source of DNA protection against damaging effects in spores, was crystallized in a functionally relevant complex with a double-stranded DNA. This report provides insights into initial characterization of the complex and its structure elucidation. An engineered variant of an α/β-type small acid-soluble spore protein (SASP) from Bacillus subtilis was crystallized in a complex with a ten-base-pair double-stranded DNA by the hanging-drop vapor-diffusion method using ammonium sulfate as a precipitating agent. Crystals grew at 281 K using sodium cacodylate buffer pH 5.5 and these crystals diffracted X-rays to beyond 2.4 Å resolution using synchrotron radiation. The crystallized complex contains two or three SASP molecules bound to one DNA molecule. The crystals belong to the hexagonal space group P6{sub 1}22 or P6{sub 5}22, with unit-cell parameters a = b = 87.0, c = 145.4 Å, α = β = 90.0, γ = 120.0°. Diffraction data were 96.6% complete to 2.4 Å resolution, with an R{sub sym} of 8.5%. Structure solution by the multiwavelength/single-wavelength anomalous dispersion method using isomorphous crystals of selenomethionine-labeled protein is in progress.

  6. Species specific identification of spore-producing microbes using the gene sequence of small acid-soluble spore coat proteins for amplification based diagnostics

    DOEpatents

    McKinney, Nancy

    2002-01-01

    PCR (polymerase chain reaction) primers for the detection of certain Bacillus species, such as Bacillus anthracis. The primers specifically amplify only DNA found in the target species and can distinguish closely related species. Species-specific PCR primers for Bacillus anthracis, Bacillus globigii and Clostridium perfringens are disclosed. The primers are directed to unique sequences within sasp (small acid soluble protein) genes.

  7. The role of small acid-soluble proteins (SASPs) in protection of spores of Clostridium botulinum against nitrous acid.

    PubMed

    Meaney, Carolyn A; Cartman, Stephen T; McClure, Peter J; Minton, Nigel P

    2016-01-01

    Mutant strains of Clostridium botulinum ATCC 3502 were generated using the ClosTron in four genes (CBO1789, CBO1790, CBO3048, CBO3145) identified as encoding α/β-type SASP homologues. The spores of mutant strains in which CBO1789 or CBO1790 was inactivated demonstrated a significant increase in sensitivity to the damaging agent nitrous acid (P<0.01), a phenotype that was partially restored to wild-type in complementation studies. In contrast to nitrous acid, the spores of the CBO1789 and CBO1790 mutants showed no change in their resistance to formaldehyde and hydrogen peroxide (P>0.05), two other chemicals commonly used as components of disinfection regimes. These data indicate that the SASPs CBO1789 or CBO1790 play a significant role in resistance to nitrous acid, but not in resistance to formaldehyde or hydrogen peroxide. PMID:26386202

  8. Levels of mRNAs which code for small, acid-soluble spore proteins and their LacZ gene fusions in sporulating cells of Bacillus subtilis.

    PubMed Central

    Mason, J M; Fajardo-Cavazos, P; Setlow, P

    1988-01-01

    The levels of mRNAs from genes (sspA, B and E) which code for major small, acid-soluble, spore proteins of Bacillus subtilis have been determined, as well as the levels of mRNAs from ssp-lacZ gene fusions. Increasing the gene dosage of ssp-lacZ fusions resulted in parallel increases in both the ssp-lacZ mRNA level and the rate of b-galactosidase accumulation. Similarly, an 11-fold increase in sspE gene dosage gave a comparable increase in sspE mRNA, but at most a 1.5-fold increase in the amount of sspE gene product accumulated. In contrast, an 11-fold increase in the dosage of the sspA or B genes had no significant effect on the level of total sspA plus sspB mRNA, but did alter the ratios of these mRNAs as well as the amount of their gene products, to reflect the altered ratio of the two genes. These results suggest that intact ssp genes, but not ssp-lacZ gene fusions, are subject to feedback regulation of gene expression, with this regulation of the sspA and B genes effected by modulation of mRNA levels, while the feedback regulation of the sspE gene is at the post-transcriptional level. Images PMID:2456528

  9. Influence of acid-soluble proteins from bivalve Siliqua radiata ligaments on calcium carbonate crystal growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Zeng-Qiong; Zhang, Gang-Sheng

    2016-08-01

    In vitro biomimetic synthesis of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) in the presence of shell proteins is a heavily researched topic in biomineralization. However, little is known regarding the function of bivalve ligament proteins in the growth of CaCO3 crystals. In this study, using fibrous protein K58 from Siliqua radiata ligaments or coverslips as substrates, we report the results of our study of CaCO3 precipitation in the presence or absence of acid-soluble proteins (ASP) from inner ligament layers. ASP can disturb the controlling function of K58 or a coverslip on the crystalline phase, resulting in the formation of aragonite, calcite, and vaterite. In addition, we identified the following four primary components from ASP by mass spectroscopy: alkaline phosphatase (ALP), ABC transporter, keratin type II cytoskeletal 1 (KRT 1), and phosphate ABC transporter, phosphate-binding protein (PstS). Further analysis revealed that the first three proteins and especially ALP, which is important in bone mineralisation, could affect the polymorphism and morphology of CaCO3 crystals by trapping calcium ions in their domains. Our results indicate that ALP may play an important role in the formation of aragonite in S. radiata ligaments. This paper may facilitate our understanding of the biomineralization process.

  10. Characterization of Clostridium perfringens Spores That Lack SpoVA Proteins and Dipicolinic Acid▿

    PubMed Central

    Paredes-Sabja, Daniel; Setlow, Barbara; Setlow, Peter; Sarker, Mahfuzur R.

    2008-01-01

    Spores of Clostridium perfringens possess high heat resistance, and when these spores germinate and return to active growth, they can cause gastrointestinal disease. Work with Bacillus subtilis has shown that the spore's dipicolinic acid (DPA) level can markedly influence both spore germination and resistance and that the proteins encoded by the spoVA operon are essential for DPA uptake by the developing spore during sporulation. We now find that proteins encoded by the spoVA operon are also essential for the uptake of Ca2+ and DPA into the developing spore during C. perfringens sporulation. Spores of a spoVA mutant had little, if any, Ca2+ and DPA, and their core water content was approximately twofold higher than that of wild-type spores. These DPA-less spores did not germinate spontaneously, as DPA-less B. subtilis spores do. Indeed, wild-type and spoVA C. perfringens spores germinated similarly with a mixture of l-asparagine and KCl (AK), KCl alone, or a 1:1 chelate of Ca2+ and DPA (Ca-DPA). However, the viability of C. perfringens spoVA spores was 20-fold lower than the viability of wild-type spores. Decoated wild-type and spoVA spores exhibited little, if any, germination with AK, KCl, or exogenous Ca-DPA, and their colony-forming efficiency was 103- to 104-fold lower than that of intact spores. However, lysozyme treatment rescued these decoated spores. Although the levels of DNA-protective α/β-type, small, acid-soluble spore proteins in spoVA spores were similar to those in wild-type spores, spoVA spores exhibited markedly lower resistance to moist heat, formaldehyde, HCl, hydrogen peroxide, nitrous acid, and UV radiation than wild-type spores did. In sum, these results suggest the following. (i) SpoVA proteins are essential for Ca-DPA uptake by developing spores during C. perfringens sporulation. (ii) SpoVA proteins and Ca-DPA release are not required for C. perfringens spore germination. (iii) A low spore core water content is essential for full

  11. Restoration of Brain Acid Soluble Protein 1 Inhibits Proliferation and Migration of Thyroid Cancer Cells

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Run-Sheng; Yu, Yue; Chen, Jun; Chen, Yue-Yu; Shen, Na; Qiu, Ming

    2016-01-01

    Background: Brain acid soluble protein 1 (BASP1) is identified as a novel potential tumor suppressor in several cancers. However, its role in thyroid cancer has not been investigated yet. In the present study, the antitumor activities of BASP1 against the growth and migration of thyroid cancer cells were evaluated. Methods: BASP1 expression in thyroid cancer tissues and normal tissues were examined by immunohistochemical staining and the association between its expression and prognosis was analyzed. pcDNA-BASP1 carrying full length of BASP1 cDNA was constructed to restore the expression of BASP1 in thyroid cancer cell lines (BHT-101 and KMH-2). The cell proliferation in vitro and in vivo was evaluated by WST-1 assay and xenograft tumor models, respectively. Cell cycle distribution after transfection was analyzed using flow cytometry. Cell apoptosis after transfection was examined by annexin V/propidium iodide assay. The migration was examined using transwell assay. Results: BASP1 expression was abundant in normal tissues while it is significantly decreased in cancer tissues (P = 0.000). pcDNA-BASP1 restored the expression of BASP1 and significantly inhibited the growth of BHT-101 and KMH-2 cells as well as xenograft tumors in nude mice (P = 0.000). pcDNA-BASP1 induced G1 arrest and apoptosis in BHT-101 and KMH-2 cells. In addition, pcDNA-BASP1 significantly inhibited the cell migration. Conclusions: Downregulation of BASP1 expression may play a role in the tumorigenesis of thyroid cancer. Restoration of BASP1 expression exerted extensive antitumor activities against growth and migration of thyroid cancer cells, which suggested that BASP1 gene might act as a potential therapeutic agent for the treatment of thyroid cancer. PMID:27270539

  12. Protein profile of Bacillus subtilis spore.

    PubMed

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

    2011-08-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-08-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  15. Spores

    MedlinePlus

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Ferencko, Linda; Rotman, Boris

    2010-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-06-01

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

  19. Surface Display of Recombinant Proteins on Bacillus subtilis Spores

    PubMed Central

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

    2001-01-01

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

  20. Spores

    MedlinePlus

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

  1. Functional Characterization of Clostridium difficile Spore Coat Proteins

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  2. Display of native proteins on Bacillus subtilis spores.

    PubMed

    Pan, Jae-Gu; Choi, Soo-Keun; Jung, Heung-Chae; Kim, Eui-Joong

    2014-09-01

    In principle, protein display is enabled by fusing target proteins to naturally secreted, surface-anchored protein motifs. In this work, we developed a method of native protein display on the Bacillus spore surface that obviates the need to construct fusion proteins to display a motif. Spore coat proteins are expressed in the mother cell compartment and are subsequently assembled and deposited on the surface of spores. Therefore, target proteins overexpressed in the mother cell compartment during the late sporulation phase were expected to be targeted and displayed on the spore surface. As a proof of principle, we demonstrated the display of carboxymethylcellulase (CMCase) in its native form on the spore surface. The target protein, CMCase, was expressed under the control of the cry1Aa promoter, which is controlled by σ(E) and σ(K) and is expressed in the mother cell compartment. The correct display was confirmed using enzyme activity assays, flow cytometry, and immunogold electron microscopy. In addition, we demonstrated the display of a β-galactosidase tetramer and confirmed its correct display using enzyme activity assays and protein characterization. This native protein display system, combined with the robust nature of Bacillus spores, will broaden the range of displayable target proteins. Consequently, the applications of display technology will be expanded, including high-throughput screening, vaccines, biosensors, biocatalysis, bioremediation, and other innovative bioprocesses. PMID:25168353

  3. [Acid-soluble collagen in the skin of rats who received a tryptophan load and were kept on a protein-free diet].

    PubMed

    Pechenova, T N; Gulyĭ, M F; Volodina, T T; Solodova, E V; Popova, N N

    1983-01-01

    Crystalline preparations of acid-soluble collagen of rat skin in norm and with tryptophan load against a background of the protein-free diet were fractionated by differential salting out using NaCl in concentrations corresponding to precipitation zones of collagen 1,3 and 4. Amino acid composition, electrophoretic mobility in polyacrylamide gel, profiles of elution from CM-cellulose, content of the carbohydrate component and--S--S-bonds were studied in proteins of the mentioned fractions and in the precipitate insoluble after the pepsin action. Essential differences as compared to the normal level in the amino acid composition and elution profiles were detected in the fraction corresponding to collagen I. Quantitative changes in the carbohydrate component and--S--S-bonds occur due to the fraction inaccessible to the persin action. PMID:6829075

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

  5. A versatile nano display platform from bacterial spore coat proteins

    PubMed Central

    Wu, I-Lin; Narayan, Kedar; Castaing, Jean-Philippe; Tian, Fang; Subramaniam, Sriram; Ramamurthi, Kumaran S.

    2015-01-01

    Dormant bacterial spores are encased in a thick protein shell, the ‘coat', which contains ∼70 different proteins. The coat protects the spore from environmental insults, and is among the most durable static structures in biology. Owing to extensive cross-linking among coat proteins, this structure has been recalcitrant to detailed biochemical analysis, so molecular details of how it assembles are largely unknown. Here, we reconstitute the basement layer of the coat atop spherical membranes supported by silica beads to create artificial spore-like particles. We report that these synthetic spore husk-encased lipid bilayers (SSHELs) assemble and polymerize into a static structure, mimicking in vivo basement layer assembly during sporulation in Bacillus subtilis. In addition, we demonstrate that SSHELs may be easily covalently modified with small molecules and proteins. We propose that SSHELs may be versatile display platforms for drugs and vaccines in clinical settings, or for enzymes that neutralize pollutants for environmental remediation. PMID:25854653

  6. Proteomic analysis of spore wall proteins and identification of two spore wall proteins from Nosema bombycis (Microsporidia).

    PubMed

    Wu, Zhengli; Li, Yanhong; Pan, Guoqing; Tan, Xiaohui; Hu, Junhua; Zhou, Zeyang; Xiang, Zhonghuai

    2008-06-01

    Microsporidia are fungal-like unicellular eukaryotes which develop as obligate intracellular parasites. They differentiate into resistant spores that are protected by a thick spore wall composed of a glycoprotein-rich outer layer or exospore and a chitin-rich inner layer or endospore. In this study performed on the silkworm pathogen Nosema bombycis, we analyzed the spore wall proteins (SWPs) by proteomic-based approaches, MALDI-TOF MS and LC-MS/MS, and 14 hypothetical spore wall proteins (HSWPs) or peptides were obtained in total. Furthermore, we have examined the SWPs by SDS-PAGE and three main spore wall peptides were detected with molecular weights of 32.7 kDa (SWP32), 30.4 kDa (SWP30), and 25.3 kDa (SWP25), respectively. By N-terminal amino acid residue sequencing, and searching the genomic DNA shotgun database of N. bombycis, the complete ORFs of SWP30 and SWP32 were obtained, which encode for a 278- and a 316-amino acid peptide, respectively. Mouse polyclonal antibodies were raised against SWP30 and SWP32 recombinant proteins produced in Escherichia coli, and the results of indirect immunofluorescence assay (IFA) and immunoelectron microscopy (IEM) analyses indicated SWP30 to be an endosporal protein while SWP32 was shown to be an exosporal protein. Both SWP30 and SWP32 are included in the 14 HSWPs identified by MS, confirming the results of the proteomic-based approaches. PMID:18563739

  7. Phosphorylation of spore coat proteins by a family of atypical protein kinases.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Kim B; Sreelatha, Anju; Durrant, Eric S; Lopez-Garrido, Javier; Muszewska, Anna; Dudkiewicz, Małgorzata; Grynberg, Marcin; Yee, Samantha; Pogliano, Kit; Tomchick, Diana R; Pawłowski, Krzysztof; Dixon, Jack E; Tagliabracci, Vincent S

    2016-06-21

    The modification of proteins by phosphorylation occurs in all life forms and is catalyzed by a large superfamily of enzymes known as protein kinases. We recently discovered a family of secretory pathway kinases that phosphorylate extracellular proteins. One member, family with sequence similarity 20C (Fam20C), is the physiological Golgi casein kinase. While examining distantly related protein sequences, we observed low levels of identity between the spore coat protein H (CotH), and the Fam20C-related secretory pathway kinases. CotH is a component of the spore in many bacterial and eukaryotic species, and is required for efficient germination of spores in Bacillus subtilis; however, the mechanism by which CotH affects germination is unclear. Here, we show that CotH is a protein kinase. The crystal structure of CotH reveals an atypical protein kinase-like fold with a unique mode of ATP binding. Examination of the genes neighboring cotH in B. subtilis led us to identify two spore coat proteins, CotB and CotG, as CotH substrates. Furthermore, we show that CotH-dependent phosphorylation of CotB and CotG is required for the efficient germination of B. subtilis spores. Collectively, our results define a family of atypical protein kinases and reveal an unexpected role for protein phosphorylation in spore biology. PMID:27185916

  8. 14C Analysis of protein extracts from Bacillus spores.

    PubMed

    Cappuccio, Jenny A; Falso, Miranda J Sarachine; Kashgarian, Michaele; Buchholz, Bruce A

    2014-07-01

    Investigators of bioagent incidents or interdicted materials need validated, independent analytical methods that will allow them to distinguish between recently made bioagent samples versus material drawn from the archives of a historical program. Heterotrophic bacteria convert the carbon in their food sources, growth substrate or culture media, into the biomolecules they need. The F(14)C (fraction modern radiocarbon) of a variety of media, Bacillus spores, and separated proteins from Bacillus spores was measured by accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS). AMS precisely measures F(14)C values of biological materials and has been used to date the synthesis of biomaterials over the bomb pulse era (1955 to present). The F(14)C of Bacillus spores reflects the radiocarbon content of the media in which they were grown. In a survey of commercial media we found that the F(14)C value indicated that carbon sources for the media were alive within about a year of the date of manufacture and generally of terrestrial origin. Hence, bacteria and their products can be dated using their (14)C signature. Bacillus spore samples were generated onsite with defined media and carbon free purification and also obtained from archived material. Using mechanical lysis and a variety of washes with carbon free acids and bases, contaminant carbon was removed from soluble proteins to enable accurate (14)C bomb-pulse dating. Since media is contemporary, (14)C bomb-pulse dating of isolated soluble proteins can be used to distinguish between historical archives of bioagents and those produced from recent media. PMID:24814329

  9. 14C Analysis of Protein Extracts from Bacillus Spores

    PubMed Central

    Cappucio, Jenny A.; Sarachine Falso, Miranda J.; Kashgarian, Michaele; Buchholz, Bruce A.

    2014-01-01

    Investigators of bioagent incidents or interdicted materials need validated, independent analytical methods that will allow them to distinguish between recently made bioagent samples versus material drawn from the archives of a historical program. Heterotrophic bacteria convert the carbon in their food sources, growth substrate or culture media, into the biomolecules they need. The F14C (fraction modern radiocarbon) of a variety of media, Bacillus spores, and separated proteins from Bacillus spores was measured by accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS). AMS precisely measures F14C values of biological materials and has been used to date the synthesis of biomaterials over the bomb pulse era (1955 to present). The F14C of Bacillus spores reflects the radiocarbon content of the media in which they were grown. In a survey of commercial media we found that the F14C value indicated that carbon sources for the media were alive within about a year of the date of manufacture and generally of terrestrial origin. Hence, bacteria and their products can be dated using their 14C signature. Bacillus spore samples were generated onsite with defined media and carbon free purification and also obtained from archived material. Using mechanical lysis and a variety of washes with carbon free acids and bases, contaminant carbon was removed from soluble proteins to enable accurate 14C bomb-pulse dating. Since media is contemporary, 14C bomb-pulse dating of isolated soluble proteins can be used to distinguish between historical archives of bioagents and those produced from recent media. PMID:24814329

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  11. Urea-Mercaptoethanol-Soluble Protein from Spores of Bacillus thuringiensis and Other Species

    PubMed Central

    Somerville, H. J.; Delafield, F. P.; Rittenberg, S. C.

    1970-01-01

    Treatment with urea-mercaptoethanol of purified spores of Bacillus thuringiensis, other Bacillus species, and Clostridium roseum solubilizes a protein fraction between 5 and 12% of the dry weight of the spores. This fraction behaves identically to the crystal protein of B. thuringiensis on acrylamide-gel electrophoresis. The protein from all of the Bacillus species shows partial homology with crystal protein, using the Ouchterlony immunodiffusion technique. A further fraction, similar in amount, can be removed from spores of B. thuringiensis by the addition of sodium lauryl sulfate to the urea-mercaptoethanol. Spores of B. thuringiensis extracted in these ways show no difference when compared to untreated spores with respect to viability or resistance to heat and ultraviolet-irradiation. The extracted spores do show differences in their germination requirements and their susceptibility to phase-darkening by lysozyme. It is concluded that an urea-mercaptoethanol-soluble protein or class of protein is a widespread component of bacterial spores, possibly located in the spore coat, and that this protein may be related to the crystal protein of B. thuringiensis. Images PMID:4984077

  12. Germination of Individual Bacillus subtilis Spores with Alterations in the GerD and SpoVA Proteins, Which Are Important in Spore Germination▿

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Guiwen; Yi, Xuan; Li, Yong-qing; Setlow, Peter

    2011-01-01

    Release of Ca2+ with dipicolinic acid (CaDPA) was monitored by Raman spectroscopy and differential interference contrast microscopy during germination of individual spores of Bacillus subtilis strains with alterations in GerD and SpoVA proteins. Notable conclusions about germination after the addition of nutrient were as follows. (i) Following l-alanine addition, wild-type and gerD spores and spores with elevated SpoVA protein levels (↑SpoVA spores) slowly released ∼10% of their CaDPA during a variable (6- to 55-min) period ending at Tlag, the time when faster CaDPA release began. (ii) Tlag times were lower for ↑SpoVA spores than for wild-type spores and were higher for gerD spores. (iii) The long Tlag times of gerD spores were partially due to slow commitment to germinate. (iv) The intervals between the commitment to germinate and CaDPA release were similar for wild-type and ↑SpoVA spores but longer for gerD spores. (v) The times for rapid CaDPA release, ΔTrelease = Trelease − Tlag (with Trelease being the time at which CaDPA release was complete), were similar for wild-type, gerD, and ↑SpoVA spores. (vi) Spores with either one of two point mutations in the spoVA operon (spoVA1 and spoVA2 spores) exhibited a more rapid rate of CaDPA release beginning immediately after l-alanine addition leading to ∼65% CaDPA release prior to Tlag. (vii) Tlag times for spoVA1 and spoVA2 spores were longer than for wild-type spores. (viii) The intervals between spoVA1 and spoVA2 spores' commitment and CaDPA release were similar to those for wild-type spores, but commitment occurred later. In contrast to germination after the addition of nutrient, Tlag and ΔTrelease times were relatively similar during dodecylamine germination of spores of the five strains. These findings suggest the following. (i) GerD plays no role in CaDPA release during spore germination. (ii) SpoVA proteins are involved in CaDPA release during germination with nutrients, and probably with

  13. Function of the SpoVAEa and SpoVAF proteins of Bacillus subtilis spores.

    PubMed

    Perez-Valdespino, Abigail; Li, Yunfeng; Setlow, Barbara; Ghosh, Sonali; Pan, David; Korza, George; Feeherry, Florence E; Doona, Christopher J; Li, Yong-Qing; Hao, Bing; Setlow, Peter

    2014-06-01

    The Bacillus subtilis spoVAEa and spoVAF genes are expressed in developing spores as members of the spoVA operon, which encodes proteins essential for the uptake and release of dipicolinic acid (DPA) during spore formation and germination. SpoVAF is likely an integral inner spore membrane protein and exhibits sequence identity to A subunits of the spore's nutrient germinant receptors (GRs), while SpoVAEa is a soluble protein with no obvious signals to allow its passage across a membrane. However, like SpoVAD, SpoVAEa is present on the outer surface of the spore's inner membrane, as SpoVAEa was accessible to an external biotinylation agent in spores and SpoVAEa disappeared in parallel with SpoVAD during proteinase K treatment of germinated spores. SpoVAEa and SpoVAD were also distributed similarly in fractions of disrupted dormant spores. Unlike spoVAD, spoVAEa is absent from the genomes of some spore-forming members of the Bacillales and Clostridiales orders, although SpoVAEa's amino acid sequence is conserved in species containing spoVAEa. B. subtilis strains lacking SpoVAF or SpoVAEa and SpoVAF sporulated normally, and the spores had normal DPA levels. Spores lacking SpoVAF or SpoVAEa and SpoVAF also germinated normally with non-GR-dependent germinants but more slowly than wild-type spores with GR-dependent germinants, and this germination defect was complemented by ectopic expression of the missing proteins. PMID:24682327

  14. SWP5, a Spore Wall Protein, Interacts with Polar Tube Proteins in the Parasitic Microsporidian Nosema bombycis

    PubMed Central

    Li, Zhi; Pan, Guoqing; Li, Tian; Huang, Wei; Chen, Jie; Geng, Lina; Yang, Donglin; Wang, Linling

    2012-01-01

    Microsporidia are a group of eukaryotic intracellular parasites that infect almost all vertebrates and invertebrates. The microsporidian invasion process involves the extrusion of a unique polar tube into host cells. Both the spore wall and the polar tube play an important role in microsporidian pathogenesis. So far, five spore wall proteins (SWP1, SWP2, Enp1, Enp2, and EcCDA) from Encephalitozoon intestinalis and Encephalitozoon cuniculi and five spore wall proteins (SWP32, SWP30, SWP26, SWP25, and NbSWP5) from the silkworm pathogen Nosema bombycis have been identified. Here we report the identification and characterization of a spore wall protein (SWP5) with a molecular mass of 20.3 kDa in N. bombycis. This protein has low sequence similarity to other eukaryotic proteins. Immunolocalization analysis showed SWP5 localized to the exospore and the region of the polar tube in mature spores. Immunoprecipitation, mass spectrometry, and immunofluorescence analyses revealed that SWP5 interacts with the polar tube proteins PTP2 and PTP3. Anti-SWP5 serum pretreatment of mature spores significantly decreased their polar tube extrusion rate. Taken together, our results show that SWP5 is a spore wall protein localized to the spore wall and that it interacts with the polar tube, may play an important role in supporting the structural integrity of the spore wall, and potentially modulates the course of infection of N. bombycis. PMID:22140229

  15. SWP5, a spore wall protein, interacts with polar tube proteins in the parasitic microsporidian Nosema bombycis.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhi; Pan, Guoqing; Li, Tian; Huang, Wei; Chen, Jie; Geng, Lina; Yang, Donglin; Wang, Linling; Zhou, Zeyang

    2012-02-01

    Microsporidia are a group of eukaryotic intracellular parasites that infect almost all vertebrates and invertebrates. The microsporidian invasion process involves the extrusion of a unique polar tube into host cells. Both the spore wall and the polar tube play an important role in microsporidian pathogenesis. So far, five spore wall proteins (SWP1, SWP2, Enp1, Enp2, and EcCDA) from Encephalitozoon intestinalis and Encephalitozoon cuniculi and five spore wall proteins (SWP32, SWP30, SWP26, SWP25, and NbSWP5) from the silkworm pathogen Nosema bombycis have been identified. Here we report the identification and characterization of a spore wall protein (SWP5) with a molecular mass of 20.3 kDa in N. bombycis. This protein has low sequence similarity to other eukaryotic proteins. Immunolocalization analysis showed SWP5 localized to the exospore and the region of the polar tube in mature spores. Immunoprecipitation, mass spectrometry, and immunofluorescence analyses revealed that SWP5 interacts with the polar tube proteins PTP2 and PTP3. Anti-SWP5 serum pretreatment of mature spores significantly decreased their polar tube extrusion rate. Taken together, our results show that SWP5 is a spore wall protein localized to the spore wall and that it interacts with the polar tube, may play an important role in supporting the structural integrity of the spore wall, and potentially modulates the course of infection of N. bombycis. PMID:22140229

  16. NbHSWP11, a microsporidia Nosema bombycis protein, localizing in the spore wall and membranes, reduces spore adherence to host cell BME.

    PubMed

    Yang, Donglin; Dang, Xiaoqun; Peng, Pai; Long, Mengxian; Ma, Cheng; Qin, Junjie Jia Guowei; Wu, Haijing; Liu, Tie; Zhou, Xiaowei; Pan, Guoqing; Zhou, Zeyang

    2014-10-01

    Microsporidia are obligate intracellular parasites, and a derivative of fungi, which harbor a rigid spore wall to resist adverse environmental pressures. The spore wall protein, which is thought to be the first and direct protein interacting with the host cell, may play a key role in the process of microsporidia infection. In this study, we report a protein, NbHSWP11, with a dnaJ domain. The protein also has 6 heparin-binding motifs which are known to interact with extracellular glycosaminoglycans. Syntenic analysis indicated that gene loci of Nbhswp11 are conserved and syntenic between Nosema bombycis and Nosema ceranae. Phylogenetic tree analysis showed that Nbhswp11 clusters with fungal dnaJ proteins and has 98% identity with an N. bombycis dnaJ protein. Nbhswp11 was transcribed throughout the entire life stages, and gradually increased during 1-7 days, in a silkworm that was infected by N. bombycis, as determined by reverse-transcription PCR (RT-PCR). The recombinant protein NbHSWP11 (rSWP11-HIS) was obtained and purified using gene cloning and prokaryotic expression. Western blotting analysis displayed NbHSWP11 expressed in the total mature spore proteins and spore coat proteins. Indirect immunofluorescence assay revealed NbHSWP11 located at the spore wall of mature spores and the spore coats. Furthermore, immune electron microscopy showed that NbHSWP11 localized in the cytoplasm of the sporont. Within the developmental process of N. bombycis, a portion of NbHSWP11 is targeted to the spore wall of sporoblasts and mature spores. However, most of NbHSWP11 distributes on the membraneous structures of the sporoblast and mature spore. In addition, using a host cell binding assay, native protein NbHSWP11 in the supernatant of total soluble mature spore proteins is shown to bind to the host cell BmE surface. Finally, an antibody blocking assay showed that purified rabbit antibody of NbHSWP11 inhibits spore adherence and decreases the adherence rate of spores by 20

  17. Two-dimensional electrophoretic analysis of spore proteins of the Microsporida.

    PubMed

    Langley, R C; Cali, A; Somberg, E W

    1987-10-01

    Microsporida are potentially useful as biological control agents for insects of economic and medical importance. Prior to their responsible use, however, an accurate and reliable means of identification to the species and subspecies level is required. Current methods used for identification are not adequate, due to variability of identifiable characters and to the occurrence of dimorphism. Recently, progress has been made in the use of biochemical characteristics to support the more traditional methods of distinguishing between morphologically similar species. We report on an improved method of characterization of microsporidan spore proteins, using 2-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (2D-PAGE). This method increased the number of spore polypeptides resolved from Nosema locustae spore protein extracts 2-3-fold over 1-dimensional PAGE. Also, each of the 2D-PAGE spore protein fingerprints of the species examined, namely Nosema locustae, Nosema bombycis, and Vairimorpha necatrix, were unique and differences in their spore protein composition were easily determined. The major structural proteins of Nosema locustae spores co-electrophoresed with alpha and beta tubulin from calf brain and had similar pI and molecular weight values as reported for tubulin in other species. Each species' 2D-PAGE fingerprint contained a few polypeptides that were present in relatively high concentration and these polypeptides may represent the major proteins of the structural components of the spore. PMID:3116194

  18. Acid soluble, pepsin resistant platelet aggregating material

    SciTech Connect

    Schneider, M.D.

    1982-08-31

    Disclosed is an acid soluble, pepsin resistant, platelet aggregating material isolated from equine arterial tissue by extraction with dilute aqueous acid. The method of isolation and use to control bleeding are described. 4 figs.

  19. Anthrax surrogate spores are destroyed by PDT mediated by phenothiazinium dyes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Demidova, Tatiana N.; Hamblin, Michael R.

    2005-04-01

    Some Gram-positive bacteria (including the causative agent of anthrax - Bacillus anthracis) survive conditions of stress and starvation by producing dormant stage spores. The spore"s multilayered capsule consists of inner and outer membranes, cortex, proteinaceous spore coat, and in some species an exosporium. These outer layers enclose dehydrated and condensed DNA, saturated with small, acid-soluble proteins. These protective structures make spores highly resistant to damage by heat, radiation, and commonly employed anti-bacterial agents. Previously Bacillus spores have been shown to be resistant to photodynamic inactivation (PDI) using dyes and light that easily destroy the corresponding vegetative bacteria, but recently we have discovered that they are susceptible to PDI. Photoinactivation, however, is only possible if phenothiazinium dyes are used. Dimethylmethylene blue, methylene blue, new methylene blue and toluidine blue O are all effective photosensitizers. Alternative photosensitizers such as Rose Bengal, polylysine chlorin(e6) conjugate, a tricationic porphyrin and benzoporphyrin derivative are ineffective against spores even though they can easily kill vegetative cells. Spores of B. cereus and B. thuringiensis are most susceptible, B. subtilis and B. atrophaeus are also killed, while B. megaterium is resistant. Photoinactivation is most effective when excess dye is washed from the spores showing that the dye binds to the spores and that excess dye in solution can quench light delivery. The relatively mild conditions needed for spore killing could have applications for treating wounds contaminated by anthrax spores and for which conventional sporicides would have unacceptable tissue toxicity.

  20. Role of Dipicolinic Acid in the Germination, Stability, and Viability of Spores of Bacillus subtilis▿

    PubMed Central

    Magge, Anil; Granger, Amanda C.; Wahome, Paul G.; Setlow, Barbara; Vepachedu, Venkata R.; Loshon, Charles A.; Peng, Lixin; Chen, De; Li, Yong-qing; Setlow, Peter

    2008-01-01

    Spores of Bacillus subtilis spoVF strains that cannot synthesize dipicolinic acid (DPA) but take it up during sporulation were prepared in medium with various DPA concentrations, and the germination and viability of these spores as well as the DPA content in individual spores were measured. Levels of some other small molecules in DPA-less spores were also measured. These studies have allowed the following conclusions. (i) Spores with no DPA or low DPA levels that lack either the cortex-lytic enzyme (CLE) SleB or the receptors that respond to nutrient germinants could be isolated but were unstable and spontaneously initiated early steps in spore germination. (ii) Spores that lacked SleB and nutrient germinant receptors and also had low DPA levels were more stable. (iii) Spontaneous germination of spores with no DPA or low DPA levels was at least in part via activation of SleB. (iv) The other redundant CLE, CwlJ, was activated only by the release of high levels of DPA from spores. (v) Low levels of DPA were sufficient for the viability of spores that lacked most α/β-type small, acid-soluble spore proteins. (vi) DPA levels accumulated in spores prepared in low-DPA-containing media varied greatly between individual spores, in contrast to the presence of more homogeneous DPA levels in individual spores made in media with high DPA concentrations. (vii) At least the great majority of spores of several spoVF strains that contained no DPA also lacked other major spore small molecules and had gone through some of the early reactions in spore germination. PMID:18469099

  1. Identification of a novel spore wall protein (SWP26) from microsporidia Nosema bombycis.

    PubMed

    Li, Yanhong; Wu, Zhengli; Pan, Guoqing; He, Weiwei; Zhang, Ruizhi; Hu, Junhua; Zhou, Zeyang

    2009-03-01

    Microsporidia are obligate intracellular parasites related to fungi with resistant spores against various environmental stresses. The rigid spore walls of these organisms are composed of two major layers, which are the exospore and the endospore. Two spore wall proteins (the endosporal protein-SWP30 and the exosporal protein-SWP32) have been previously identified in Nosema bombycis. In this study, using the MALDI-TOF-MS technique, we have characterised a new 25.7-kDa spore wall protein (SWP26) recognised by monoclonal antibody 2G10. SWP26 is predicted to have a signal peptide, four potential N-glycosylation sites, and a C-terminal heparin-binding motif (HBM) which is known to interact with extracellular glycosaminoglycans. By using a host cell binding assay, recombinant SWP26 protein (rSWP26) can inhibit spore adherence by 10%, resulting in decreased host cell infection. In contrast, the mutant rSWP26 (rDeltaSWP26, without HBM) was not effective in inhibiting spore adherence. Immuno-electron microscopy revealed that this protein was expressed largely in endospore and plasma membrane during endospore development, but sparsely distributed in the exospore of mature spores. The present results suggest that SWP26 is a microsporidia cell wall protein that is involved in endospore formation, host cell adherence and infection in vitro. Moreover, SWP26 could be used as a good prospective target for diagnostic research and drug design in controlling the silkworm, Bombyx mori, pebrine disease in sericulture. PMID:18854188

  2. ssp genes and spore osmotolerance in Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis and Bacillus sphaericus.

    PubMed

    Cucchi, A; Sanchez de Rivas, C

    1995-10-01

    It was shown previously that spores and vegetative cells of Bacillus sphaericus (Bf) and Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (Bti) are very sensitive to osmotic variations. Since spore osmotolerance has been associated with their SASP (small acid soluble spore proteins) content coded by ssp genes, hybridization assays were performed with sspE and sspA genes from B. subtilis as probes and showed that Bti and Bf strains could lack an sspE-like gene. The B. subtilis sspE gene was then introduced into Bti 4Q2 strain; spores were obtained and showed a 65 to 650 times higher level of osmotolerance to NaCl, without affecting other important properties: hypoosmotic resistance in vegetative cells, spore UV resistance, and larvicidal activity against diptera larvae. PMID:7549769

  3. Involvement of Coat Proteins in Bacillus subtilis Spore Germination in High-Salinity Environments.

    PubMed

    Nagler, Katja; Setlow, Peter; Reineke, Kai; Driks, Adam; Moeller, Ralf

    2015-10-01

    The germination of spore-forming bacteria in high-salinity environments is of applied interest for food microbiology and soil ecology. It has previously been shown that high salt concentrations detrimentally affect Bacillus subtilis spore germination, rendering this process slower and less efficient. The mechanistic details of these salt effects, however, remained obscure. Since initiation of nutrient germination first requires germinant passage through the spores' protective integuments, the aim of this study was to elucidate the role of the proteinaceous spore coat in germination in high-salinity environments. Spores lacking major layers of the coat due to chemical decoating or mutation germinated much worse in the presence of NaCl than untreated wild-type spores at comparable salinities. However, the absence of the crust, the absence of some individual nonmorphogenetic proteins, and the absence of either CwlJ or SleB had no or little effect on germination in high-salinity environments. Although the germination of spores lacking GerP (which is assumed to facilitate germinant flow through the coat) was generally less efficient than the germination of wild-type spores, the presence of up to 2.4 M NaCl enhanced the germination of these mutant spores. Interestingly, nutrient-independent germination by high pressure was also inhibited by NaCl. Taken together, these results suggest that (i) the coat has a protective function during germination in high-salinity environments; (ii) germination inhibition by NaCl is probably not exerted at the level of cortex hydrolysis, germinant accessibility, or germinant-receptor binding; and (iii) the most likely germination processes to be inhibited by NaCl are ion, Ca(2+)-dipicolinic acid, and water fluxes. PMID:26187959

  4. Involvement of Coat Proteins in Bacillus subtilis Spore Germination in High-Salinity Environments

    PubMed Central

    Nagler, Katja; Setlow, Peter; Reineke, Kai; Driks, Adam

    2015-01-01

    The germination of spore-forming bacteria in high-salinity environments is of applied interest for food microbiology and soil ecology. It has previously been shown that high salt concentrations detrimentally affect Bacillus subtilis spore germination, rendering this process slower and less efficient. The mechanistic details of these salt effects, however, remained obscure. Since initiation of nutrient germination first requires germinant passage through the spores' protective integuments, the aim of this study was to elucidate the role of the proteinaceous spore coat in germination in high-salinity environments. Spores lacking major layers of the coat due to chemical decoating or mutation germinated much worse in the presence of NaCl than untreated wild-type spores at comparable salinities. However, the absence of the crust, the absence of some individual nonmorphogenetic proteins, and the absence of either CwlJ or SleB had no or little effect on germination in high-salinity environments. Although the germination of spores lacking GerP (which is assumed to facilitate germinant flow through the coat) was generally less efficient than the germination of wild-type spores, the presence of up to 2.4 M NaCl enhanced the germination of these mutant spores. Interestingly, nutrient-independent germination by high pressure was also inhibited by NaCl. Taken together, these results suggest that (i) the coat has a protective function during germination in high-salinity environments; (ii) germination inhibition by NaCl is probably not exerted at the level of cortex hydrolysis, germinant accessibility, or germinant-receptor binding; and (iii) the most likely germination processes to be inhibited by NaCl are ion, Ca2+-dipicolinic acid, and water fluxes. PMID:26187959

  5. Identification of the Immunogenic Spore and Vegetative Proteins of Bacillus anthracis Vaccine Strain A16R

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Erling; Wang, Xuefang; Zhu, Li; Wang, Hengliang

    2013-01-01

    Immunoproteomics was used to screen the immunogenic spore and vegetative proteins of Bacillus anthracis vaccine strain A16R. The spore and vegetative proteins were separated by 2D gel electrophoresis and transferred to polyvinylidene difluoride membranes, and then western blotting was performed with rabbit immune serum against B.anthracis live spores. Immunogenic spots were cut and digested by trypsin. Matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry was performed to identify the proteins. As a result, 11 and 45 immunogenic proteins were identified in the spores and vegetative cells, respectively; 26 of which have not been reported previously. To verify their immunogenicity, 12 of the identified proteins were selected to be expressed, and the immune sera from the mice vaccinated by the 12 expressed proteins, except BA0887, had a specific western blot band with the A16R whole cellular lytic proteins. Some of these immunogenic proteins might be used as novel vaccine candidates themselves or for enhancing the protective efficacy of a protective-antigen-based vaccine. PMID:23516421

  6. Multifactorial Resistance of Bacillus subtilis Spores to High-Energy Proton Radiation: Role of Spore Structural Components and the Homologous Recombination and Non-Homologous End Joining DNA Repair Pathways

    PubMed Central

    Reitz, Günther; Li, Zuofeng; Klein, Stuart; Nicholson, Wayne L.

    2012-01-01

    Abstract The space environment contains high-energy charged particles (e.g., protons, neutrons, electrons, α-particles, heavy ions) emitted by the Sun and galactic sources or trapped in the radiation belts. Protons constitute the majority (87%) of high-energy charged particles. Spores of Bacillus species are one of the model systems used for astro- and radiobiological studies. In this study, spores of different Bacillus subtilis strains were used to study the effects of high energetic proton irradiation on spore survival. Spores of the wild-type B. subtilis strain [mutants deficient in the homologous recombination (HR) and non-homologous end joining (NHEJ) DNA repair pathways and mutants deficient in various spore structural components such as dipicolinic acid (DPA), α/β-type small, acid-soluble spore protein (SASP) formation, spore coats, pigmentation, or spore core water content] were irradiated as air-dried multilayers on spacecraft-qualified aluminum coupons with 218 MeV protons [with a linear energy transfer (LET) of 0.4 keV/μm] to various final doses up to 2500 Gy. Spores deficient in NHEJ- and HR-mediated DNA repair were significantly more sensitive to proton radiation than wild-type spores, indicating that both HR and NHEJ DNA repair pathways are needed for spore survival. Spores lacking DPA, α/β-type SASP, or with increased core water content were also significantly more sensitive to proton radiation, whereas the resistance of spores lacking pigmentation or spore coats was essentially identical to that of the wild-type spores. Our results indicate that α/β-type SASP, core water content, and DPA play an important role in spore resistance to high-energy proton irradiation, suggesting their essential function as radioprotectants of the spore interior. Key Words: Bacillus—Spores—DNA repair—Protection—High-energy proton radiation. Astrobiology 12, 1069–1077. PMID:23088412

  7. Improved Proteomic Analysis Following Trichloroacetic Acid Extraction of Bacillus anthracis Spore Proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Kaiser, Brooke LD; Wunschel, David S.; Sydor, Michael A.; Warner, Marvin G.; Wahl, Karen L.; Hutchison, Janine R.

    2015-08-07

    Proteomic analysis of bacterial samples provides valuable information about cellular responses and functions under different environmental pressures. Proteomic analysis is dependent upon efficient extraction of proteins from bacterial samples without introducing bias toward extraction of particular protein classes. While no single method can recover 100% of the bacterial proteins, selected protocols can improve overall protein isolation, peptide recovery, or enrich for certain classes of proteins. The method presented here is technically simple and does not require specialized equipment such as a mechanical disrupter. Our data reveal that for particularly challenging samples, such as B. anthracis Sterne spores, trichloroacetic acid extraction improved the number of proteins identified within a sample compared to bead beating (714 vs 660, respectively). Further, TCA extraction enriched for 103 known spore specific proteins whereas bead beating resulted in 49 unique proteins. Analysis of C. botulinum samples grown to 5 days, composed of vegetative biomass and spores, showed a similar trend with improved protein yields and identification using our method compared to bead beating. Interestingly, easily lysed samples, such as B. anthracis vegetative cells, were equally as effectively processed via TCA and bead beating, but TCA extraction remains the easiest and most cost effective option. As with all assays, supplemental methods such as implementation of an alternative preparation method may provide additional insight to the protein biology of the bacteria being studied.

  8. Spore Resistance Properties.

    PubMed

    Setlow, Peter

    2014-10-01

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

  9. EnP1, a Microsporidian Spore Wall Protein That Enables Spores To Adhere to and Infect Host Cells In Vitro▿

    PubMed Central

    Southern, Timothy R.; Jolly, Carrie E.; Lester, Melissa E.; Hayman, J. Russell

    2007-01-01

    Microsporidia are spore-forming fungal pathogens that require the intracellular environment of host cells for propagation. We have shown that spores of the genus Encephalitozoon adhere to host cell surface glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) in vitro and that this adherence serves to modulate the infection process. In this study, a spore wall protein (EnP1; Encephalitozoon cuniculi ECU01_0820) from E. cuniculi and Encephalitozoon intestinalis is found to interact with the host cell surface. Analysis of the amino acid sequence reveals multiple heparin-binding motifs, which are known to interact with extracellular matrices. Both recombinant EnP1 protein and purified EnP1 antibody inhibit spore adherence, resulting in decreased host cell infection. Furthermore, when the N-terminal heparin-binding motif is deleted by site-directed mutagenesis, inhibition of adherence is ablated. Our transmission immunoelectron microscopy reveals that EnP1 is embedded in the microsporidial endospore and exospore and is found in high abundance in the polar sac/anchoring disk region, an area from which the everting polar tube is released. Finally, by using a host cell binding assay, EnP1 is shown to bind host cell surfaces but not to those that lack surface GAGs. Collectively, these data show that given its expression in both the endospore and the exospore, EnP1 is a microsporidian cell wall protein that may function both in a structural capacity and in modulating in vitro host cell adherence and infection. PMID:17557882

  10. Structural and functional analysis of the GerD spore germination protein of Bacillus species.

    PubMed

    Li, Yunfeng; Jin, Kai; Ghosh, Sonali; Devarakonda, Parvathimadhavi; Carlson, Kristina; Davis, Andrew; Stewart, Kerry-Ann V; Cammett, Elizabeth; Pelczar Rossi, Patricia; Setlow, Barbara; Lu, Min; Setlow, Peter; Hao, Bing

    2014-05-01

    Spore germination in Bacillus species represents an excellent model system with which to study the molecular mechanisms underlying the nutritional control of growth and development. Binding of specific chemical nutrients to their cognate receptors located in the spore inner membrane triggers the germination process that leads to a resumption of metabolism in spore outgrowth. Recent studies suggest that the inner membrane GerD lipoprotein plays a critical role in the receptor-mediated activation of downstream germination events. The 121-residue core polypeptide of GerD (GerD⁶⁰⁻¹⁸⁰) from Geobacillus stearothermophilus forms a stable α-helical trimer in aqueous solution. The 2.3-Å-resolution crystal structure of the trimer reveals a neatly twisted superhelical rope, with unusual supercoiling induced by parallel triple-helix interactions. The overall geometry comprises three interleaved hydrophobic screws of interacting helices linked by short turns that have not been seen before. Using complementation analysis in a series of Bacillus subtilis gerD mutants, we demonstrated that alterations in the GerD trimer structure have profound effects on nutrient germination. This important structure-function relationship of trimeric GerD is supported by our identification of a dominant negative gerD mutation in B. subtilis. These results and those of others lead us to propose that GerD mediates clustering of germination proteins in the inner membrane of dormant spores and thus promotes the rapid and cooperative germination response to nutrients. PMID:24530795

  11. Extracellular proteins from the Phakopsora pachyrhizi spore wall

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Phakopsora pachyrhizi is the causal agent of Asian soybean rust, a disease of leguminous plants that has recently become established in the U.S. We previously applied two-dimensional gel electrophoresis and MALDI-TOF/TOF mass spectrometry to identify a set of extracellular proteins that were washed...

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

    PubMed

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

    2008-08-01

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

  13. Regulation of Clostridium difficile Spore Formation by the SpoIIQ and SpoIIIA Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Fimlaid, Kelly A.; Jensen, Owen; Donnelly, M. Lauren; Siegrist, M. Sloan; Shen, Aimee

    2015-01-01

    Sporulation is an ancient developmental process that involves the formation of a highly resistant endospore within a larger mother cell. In the model organism Bacillus subtilis, sporulation-specific sigma factors activate compartment-specific transcriptional programs that drive spore morphogenesis. σG activity in the forespore depends on the formation of a secretion complex, known as the “feeding tube,” that bridges the mother cell and forespore and maintains forespore integrity. Even though these channel components are conserved in all spore formers, recent studies in the major nosocomial pathogen Clostridium difficile suggested that these components are dispensable for σG activity. In this study, we investigated the requirements of the SpoIIQ and SpoIIIA proteins during C. difficile sporulation. C. difficile spoIIQ, spoIIIA, and spoIIIAH mutants exhibited defects in engulfment, tethering of coat to the forespore, and heat-resistant spore formation, even though they activate σG at wildtype levels. Although the spoIIQ, spoIIIA, and spoIIIAH mutants were defective in engulfment, metabolic labeling studies revealed that they nevertheless actively transformed the peptidoglycan at the leading edge of engulfment. In vitro pull-down assays further demonstrated that C. difficile SpoIIQ directly interacts with SpoIIIAH. Interestingly, mutation of the conserved Walker A ATP binding motif, but not the Walker B ATP hydrolysis motif, disrupted SpoIIIAA function during C. difficile spore formation. This finding contrasts with B. subtilis, which requires both Walker A and B motifs for SpoIIIAA function. Taken together, our findings suggest that inhibiting SpoIIQ, SpoIIIAA, or SpoIIIAH function could prevent the formation of infectious C. difficile spores and thus disease transmission. PMID:26465937

  14. The Direct Interaction between Two Morphogenetic Proteins Is Essential for Spore Coat Formation in Bacillus subtilis

    PubMed Central

    Isticato, Rachele; Sirec, Teja; Vecchione, Stefano; Crispino, Anna; Saggese, Anella; Baccigalupi, Loredana; Notomista, Eugenio; Driks, Adam; Ricca, Ezio

    2015-01-01

    In Bacillus subtilis the protective layers that surround the mature spore are formed by over seventy different proteins. Some of those proteins have a regulatory role on the assembly of other coat proteins and are referred to as morphogenetic factors. CotE is a major morphogenetic factor, known to form a ring around the forming spore and organize the deposition of the outer surface layers. CotH is a CotE-dependent protein known to control the assembly of at least nine other coat proteins. We report that CotH also controls the assembly of CotE and that this mutual dependency is due to a direct interaction between the two proteins. The C-terminal end of CotE is essential for this direct interaction and CotH cannot bind to mutant CotE deleted of six or nine C-terminal amino acids. However, addition of a negatively charged amino acid to those deleted versions of CotE rescues the interaction. PMID:26484546

  15. A Gene Encoding a Holin-Like Protein Involved in Spore Morphogenesis and Spore Germination in Bacillus subtilis

    PubMed Central

    Real, Gonçalo; Pinto, Sérgio M.; Schyns, Ghislain; Costa, Teresa; Henriques, Adriano O.; Moran, Charles P.

    2005-01-01

    We report here studies of expression and functional analysis of a Bacillus subtilis gene, ywcE, which codes for a product with features of a holin. Primer extension analysis of ywcE transcription revealed that a single transcript accumulated from the onset of sporulation onwards, produced from a σA-type promoter bearing the TG dinucleotide motif of “extended” −10 promoters. No primer extension product was detected in vivo during growth. However, specific runoff products were produced in vitro from the ywcE promoter by purified σA-containing RNA polymerase (EσA), and the in vivo and in vitro transcription start sites were identical. These results suggested that utilization of the ywcE promoter by EσA during growth was subjected to repression. Studies with a lacZ fusion revealed that the transition-state regulator AbrB repressed the transcription of ywcE during growth. This repression was reversed at the onset of sporulation in a Spo0A-dependent manner, but Spo0A did not appear to contribute otherwise to ywcE transcription. We found ywcE to be required for proper spore morphogenesis. Spores of the ywcE mutant showed a reduced outer coat which lacked the characteristic striated pattern, and the outer coat failed to attach to the underlying inner coat. The mutant spores also accumulated reduced levels of dipicolinic acid. ywcE was also found to be important for spore germination. PMID:16159778

  16. Bacillus and other spore-forming genera: variations in responses and mechanisms for survival.

    PubMed

    Checinska, Aleksandra; Paszczynski, Andrzej; Burbank, Malcolm

    2015-01-01

    The ubiquity of Bacilli endospores in soils facilitates their easy transfer routes to other environments, including cleanrooms and low-biomass sites required by many industries such as food production and processing. A bacterial endospore is a metabolically dormant form of life that is much more resistant to heat, desiccation, lack of nutrients, exposure to UV and gamma radiation, organic chemicals, and oxidizing agents than is a vegetative cell. For example, the heat tolerance of endospores depends on multiple factors such as sporulation temperature, core dehydration, and the presence of minerals and small, acid-soluble proteins (SASPs) in the core. This review describes our current understanding of the persistence mechanisms related to sporeformers' biochemical properties and discusses in detail spores' heat, radiation, and reactive chemical resistance. In addition, it discusses the impact of contamination with spores on many areas of human activity, spore adhesive properties, and biofilm contribution to resistance. PMID:25705935

  17. Diverse supramolecular structures formed by self‐assembling proteins of the B acillus subtilis spore coat

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Shuo; Wan, Qiang; Krajcikova, Daniela; Tang, Jilin; Tzokov, Svetomir B.; Barak, Imrich

    2015-01-01

    Summary Bacterial spores (endospores), such as those of the pathogens C lostridium difficile and B acillus anthracis, are uniquely stable cell forms, highly resistant to harsh environmental insults. B acillus subtilis is the best studied spore‐former and we have used it to address the question of how the spore coat is assembled from multiple components to form a robust, protective superstructure. B . subtilis coat proteins (CotY, CotE, CotV and CotW) expressed in E scherichia coli can arrange intracellularly into highly stable macro‐structures through processes of self‐assembly. Using electron microscopy, we demonstrate the capacity of these proteins to generate ordered one‐dimensional fibres, two‐dimensional sheets and three‐dimensional stacks. In one case (CotY), the high degree of order favours strong, cooperative intracellular disulfide cross‐linking. Assemblies of this kind could form exquisitely adapted building blocks for higher‐order assembly across all spore‐formers. These physically robust arrayed units could also have novel applications in nano‐biotechnology processes. PMID:25872412

  18. Role of DNA Protection and Repair in Resistance of Bacillus subtilis Spores to Ultrahigh Shock Pressures Simulating Hypervelocity Impacts▿

    PubMed Central

    Moeller, Ralf; Horneck, Gerda; Rabbow, Elke; Reitz, Günther; Meyer, Cornelia; Hornemann, Ulrich; Stöffler, Dieter

    2008-01-01

    Impact-induced ejections of rocks from planetary surfaces are frequent events in the early history of the terrestrial planets and have been considered as a possible first step in the potential interplanetary transfer of microorganisms. Spores of Bacillus subtilis were used as a model system to study the effects of a simulated impact-caused ejection on rock-colonizing microorganisms using a high-explosive plane wave setup. Embedded in different types of rock material, spores were subjected to extremely high shock pressures (5 to 50 GPa) lasting for fractions of microseconds to seconds. Nearly exponential pressure response curves were obtained for spore survival and linear dependency for the induction of sporulation-defective mutants. Spores of strains defective in major small, acid-soluble spore proteins (SASP) (α/β-type SASP) that largely protect the spore DNA and spores of strains deficient in nonhomologous-end-joining DNA repair were significantly more sensitive to the applied shock pressure than were wild-type spores. These results indicate that DNA may be the sensitive target of spores exposed to ultrahigh shock pressures. To assess the nature of the critical physical parameter responsible for spore inactivation by ultrahigh shock pressures, the resulting peak temperature was varied by lowering the preshock temperature, changing the rock composition and porosity, or increasing the water content of the samples. Increased peak temperatures led to increased spore inactivation and reduced mutation rates. The data suggested that besides the potential mechanical stress exerted by the shock pressure, the accompanying high peak temperatures were a critical stress parameter that spores had to cope with. PMID:18791028

  19. Acid soluble platelet aggregating material isolated from human umbilical cord

    SciTech Connect

    Schneider, M.D.

    1983-12-27

    An acid soluble, pepsin sensitive platelet aggregating material is isolated from human umbilical cord tissue by extraction with dilute aqueous acid. The method of isolation is disclosed and its use to control bleeding is described. 2 figs.

  20. Contrasting evolutionary patterns of spore coat proteins in two Bacillus species groups are linked to a difference in cellular structure

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The Bacillus subtilis-group and the Bacillus cereus-group are two well-studied groups of species in the genus Bacillus. Bacteria in this genus can produce a highly resistant cell type, the spore, which is encased in a complex protective protein shell called the coat. Spores in the B. cereus-group contain an additional outer layer, the exosporium, which encircles the coat. The coat in B. subtilis spores possesses inner and outer layers. The aim of this study is to investigate whether differences in the spore structures influenced the divergence of the coat protein genes during the evolution of these two Bacillus species groups. Results We designed and implemented a computational framework to compare the evolutionary histories of coat proteins. We curated a list of B. subtilis coat proteins and identified their orthologs in 11 Bacillus species based on phylogenetic congruence. Phylogenetic profiles of these coat proteins show that they can be divided into conserved and labile ones. Coat proteins comprising the B. subtilis inner coat are significantly more conserved than those comprising the outer coat. We then performed genome-wide comparisons of the nonsynonymous/synonymous substitution rate ratio, dN/dS, and found contrasting patterns: Coat proteins have significantly higher dN/dS in the B. subtilis-group genomes, but not in the B. cereus-group genomes. We further corroborated this contrast by examining changes of dN/dS within gene trees, and found that some coat protein gene trees have significantly different dN/dS between the B subtilis-clade and the B. cereus-clade. Conclusions Coat proteins in the B. subtilis- and B. cereus-group species are under contrasting selective pressures. We speculate that the absence of the exosporium in the B. subtilis spore coat effectively lifted a structural constraint that has led to relaxed negative selection pressure on the outer coat. PMID:24283940

  1. Laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy of bacterial spores, molds, pollens, and protein: initial studies of discrimination potential

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Samuels, Alan C.; Delucia, Frank C.; McNesby, Kevin L.; Miziolek, Andrzej W.

    2003-10-01

    Laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) has been used to study bacterial spores, molds, pollens, and proteins. Biosamples were prepared and deposited onto porous silver substrates. LIBS data from the individual laser shots were analyzed by principal-components analysis and were found to contain adequate information to afford discrimination among the different biomaterials. Additional discrimination within the three bacilli studied appears feasible.

  2. Characterization of a novel spore wall protein NbSWP16 with proline-rich tandem repeats from Nosema bombycis (microsporidia).

    PubMed

    Wang, Ying; Dang, Xiaoqun; Ma, Qiang; Liu, Fangyan; Pan, Guoqing; Li, Tian; Zhou, Zeyang

    2015-04-01

    Nosema bombycis, a pathogen of silkworm pebrine, is an obligate unicellular eukaryotic parasite. It is reported that the spore wall proteins have essential functions in the adherence and infection process of microsporidia. To date, the information related to spore wall proteins from microsporidia is still limited. Here, a 44 kDa spore wall protein NbSWP16 was characterized in N. bombycis. In NbSWP16, a 25 amino acids signal peptide and 3 heparin binding motifs were predicted. Interestingly, a region that contains 3 proline-rich tandem repeats lacking homology to any known protein was also present in this protein. The immunofluorescence analysis (IFA) demonstrated that distinct fluorescent signals were detected both on the surface of mature spores and the germinated spore coats. Immunolocation by electron microscopy revealed that NbSWP16 localized on the exospore regions. Finally, spore adherence analysis indicated that spore adherence to host cell was decreased more than 20% by anti-NbSWP16 blocking compared with the negative control in vitro. In contrast with anti-NbSWP16, no remarkable decrement inhibition was detected when antibodies of NbSWP16 and NbSWP5 were used simultaneously. Collectively, these results suggest that NbSWP16 is a new exospore protein and probably be involved in spore adherence of N. bombycis. PMID:25363531

  3. Interaction and assembly of two novel proteins in the spore wall of the microsporidian species Nosema bombycis and their roles in adherence to and infection of host cells.

    PubMed

    Yang, Donglin; Pan, Guoqing; Dang, Xiaoqun; Shi, Yawei; Li, Chunfeng; Peng, Pai; Luo, Bo; Bian, Maofei; Song, Yue; Ma, Cheng; Chen, Jie; Ma, Zhengang; Geng, Lina; Li, Zhi; Tian, Rui; Wei, Cuifang; Zhou, Zeyang

    2015-04-01

    Microsporidia are obligate intracellular parasites with rigid spore walls that protect against various environmental pressures. Despite an extensive description of the spore wall, little is known regarding the mechanism by which it is deposited or the role it plays in cell adhesion and infection. In this study, we report the identification and characterization of two novel spore wall proteins, SWP7 and SWP9, in the microsporidian species Nosema bombycis. SWP7 and SWP9 are mainly localized to the exospore and endospore of mature spores and the cytoplasm of sporonts, respectively. In addition, a portion of SWP9 is targeted to the spore wall of sporoblasts earlier than SWP7 is. Both SWP7 and SWP9 are specifically colocalized to the spore wall in mature spores. Furthermore, immunoprecipitation, far-Western blotting, unreduced SDS-PAGE, and yeast two-hybrid data demonstrated that SWP7 interacted with SWP9. The chitin binding assay showed that, within the total spore protein, SWP9 and SWP7 can bind to the deproteinated chitin spore coats (DCSCs) of N. bombycis. However, binding of the recombinant protein rSWP7-His to the DCSCs is dependent on the combination of rSWP9-glutathione S-transferase (GST) with the DCSCs. Finally, rSWP9-GST, anti-SWP9, and anti-SWP7 antibodies decreased spore adhesion and infection of the host cell. In conclusion, SWP7 and SWP9 may have important structural capacities and play significant roles in modulating host cell adherence and infection in vitro. A possible major function of SWP9 is as a scaffolding protein that supports other proteins (such as SWP7) that form the integrated spore wall of N. bombycis. PMID:25605761

  4. Interaction and Assembly of Two Novel Proteins in the Spore Wall of the Microsporidian Species Nosema bombycis and Their Roles in Adherence to and Infection of Host Cells

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Donglin; Pan, Guoqing; Dang, Xiaoqun; Shi, Yawei; Li, Chunfeng; Peng, Pai; Luo, Bo; Bian, Maofei; Song, Yue; Ma, Cheng; Chen, Jie; Ma, Zhengang; Geng, Lina; Li, Zhi; Tian, Rui; Wei, Cuifang

    2015-01-01

    Microsporidia are obligate intracellular parasites with rigid spore walls that protect against various environmental pressures. Despite an extensive description of the spore wall, little is known regarding the mechanism by which it is deposited or the role it plays in cell adhesion and infection. In this study, we report the identification and characterization of two novel spore wall proteins, SWP7 and SWP9, in the microsporidian species Nosema bombycis. SWP7 and SWP9 are mainly localized to the exospore and endospore of mature spores and the cytoplasm of sporonts, respectively. In addition, a portion of SWP9 is targeted to the spore wall of sporoblasts earlier than SWP7 is. Both SWP7 and SWP9 are specifically colocalized to the spore wall in mature spores. Furthermore, immunoprecipitation, far-Western blotting, unreduced SDS-PAGE, and yeast two-hybrid data demonstrated that SWP7 interacted with SWP9. The chitin binding assay showed that, within the total spore protein, SWP9 and SWP7 can bind to the deproteinated chitin spore coats (DCSCs) of N. bombycis. However, binding of the recombinant protein rSWP7-His to the DCSCs is dependent on the combination of rSWP9–glutathione S-transferase (GST) with the DCSCs. Finally, rSWP9-GST, anti-SWP9, and anti-SWP7 antibodies decreased spore adhesion and infection of the host cell. In conclusion, SWP7 and SWP9 may have important structural capacities and play significant roles in modulating host cell adherence and infection in vitro. A possible major function of SWP9 is as a scaffolding protein that supports other proteins (such as SWP7) that form the integrated spore wall of N. bombycis. PMID:25605761

  5. Identification of a novel chitin-binding spore wall protein (NbSWP12) with a BAR-2 domain from Nosema bombycis (microsporidia).

    PubMed

    Chen, Jie; Geng, Lina; Long, Mengxian; Li, Tian; Li, Zhi; Yang, Donglin; Ma, Chao; Wu, Haijing; Ma, Zhengang; Li, Chunfeng; Pan, Guoqing; Zhou, Zeyang

    2013-09-01

    The spore wall of Nosema bombycis plays an important role in microsporidian pathogenesis. Protein fractions from germinated spore coats were analysed by two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and MALDI-TOF/TOF mass spectrometry. Three protein spots were identified as the hypothetical spore wall protein NbHSWP12. A BAR-2 domain (e-value: 1.35e-03) was identified in the protein, and an N-terminal protein-heparin interaction motif, a potential N-glycosylation site, and 16 phosphorylation sites primarily activated by protein kinase C were also predicted. The sequence analysis suggested that Nbhswp12 and its homologous genes are widely distributed among microsporidia. Additionally, Nbhswp12 gene homologues share similar sequence features. An indirect immunofluorescence analysis showed that NbHSWP12 localized to the spore wall, and thus we renamed it spore wall protein 12 (NbSWP12). Moreover, NbSWP12 could adhere to deproteinized N. bombycis chitin coats that were obtained by hot alkaline treatment. This novel N. bombycis spore wall protein may function in a structural capacity to facilitate microsporidial spore maintenance. PMID:23920053

  6. Gene activity during germination of spores of the fern, Onoclea sensibilis: RNA and protein synthesis and the role of stored mRNA

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Raghavan, V.

    1991-01-01

    Pattern of 3H-uridine incorporation into RNA of spores of Onoclea sensibilis imbibed in complete darkness (non-germinating conditions) and induced to germinate in red light was followed by oligo-dT cellulose chromatography, gel electrophoresis coupled with fluorography and autoradiography. In dark-imbibed spores, RNA synthesis was initiated about 24 h after sowing, with most of the label accumulating in the high mol. wt. poly(A) -RNA fraction. There was no incorporation of the label into poly(A) +RNA until 48 h after sowing. In contrast, photo-induced spores began to synthesize all fractions of RNA within 12 h after sowing and by 24 h, incorporation of 3H-uridine into RNA of irradiated spores was nearly 70-fold higher than that into dark-imbibed spores. Protein synthesis, as monitored by 3H-arginine incorporation into the acid-insoluble fraction and by autoradiography, was initiated in spores within 1-2 h after sowing under both conditions. Autoradiographic experiments also showed that onset of protein synthesis in the cytoplasm of the germinating spore is independent of the transport of newly synthesized nuclear RNA. One-dimensional sodium dodecyl sulphate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of 35S-methionine-labelled proteins revealed a good correspondence between proteins synthesized in a cell-free translation system directed by poly(A) +RNA of dormant spores and those synthesized in vivo by dark-imbibed and photo-induced spores. These results indicate that stored mRNAs of O. sensibilis spores are functionally competent and provide templates for the synthesis of proteins during dark-imbibition and germination.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

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

  8. Characterization of the spore surface and exosporium proteins of Clostridium sporogenes; implications for Clostridium botulinum group I strains.

    PubMed

    Janganan, Thamarai K; Mullin, Nic; Tzokov, Svetomir B; Stringer, Sandra; Fagan, Robert P; Hobbs, Jamie K; Moir, Anne; Bullough, Per A

    2016-10-01

    Clostridium sporogenes is a non-pathogenic close relative and surrogate for Group I (proteolytic) neurotoxin-producing Clostridium botulinum strains. The exosporium, the sac-like outermost layer of spores of these species, is likely to contribute to adhesion, dissemination, and virulence. A paracrystalline array, hairy nap, and several appendages were detected in the exosporium of C. sporogenes strain NCIMB 701792 by EM and AFM. The protein composition of purified exosporium was explored by LC-MS/MS of tryptic peptides from major individual SDS-PAGE-separated protein bands, and from bulk exosporium. Two high molecular weight protein bands both contained the same protein with a collagen-like repeat domain, the probable constituent of the hairy nap, as well as cysteine-rich proteins CsxA and CsxB. A third cysteine-rich protein (CsxC) was also identified. These three proteins are also encoded in C. botulinum Prevot 594, and homologues (75-100% amino acid identity) are encoded in many other Group I strains. This work provides the first insight into the likely composition and organization of the exosporium of Group I C. botulinum spores. PMID:27375261

  9. The Effects of Heat Activation on Bacillus Spore Germination, with Nutrients or under High Pressure, with or without Various Germination Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Luu, Stephanie; Cruz-Mora, Jose; Setlow, Barbara; Feeherry, Florence E.; Doona, Christopher J.

    2015-01-01

    Nutrient germination of spores of Bacillus species occurs through germinant receptors (GRs) in spores' inner membrane (IM) in a process stimulated by sublethal heat activation. Bacillus subtilis spores maximum germination rates via different GRs required different 75°C heat activation times: 15 min for l-valine germination via the GerA GR and 4 h for germination with the l-asparagine–glucose–fructose–K+ mixture via the GerB and GerK GRs, with GerK requiring the most heat activation. In some cases, optimal heat activation decreased nutrient concentrations for half-maximal germination rates. Germination of spores via various GRs by high pressure (HP) of 150 MPa exhibited heat activation requirements similar to those of nutrient germination, and the loss of the GerD protein, required for optimal GR function, did not eliminate heat activation requirements for maximal germination rates. These results are consistent with heat activation acting primarily on GRs. However, (i) heat activation had no effects on GR or GerD protein conformation, as probed by biotinylation by an external reagent; (ii) spores prepared at low and high temperatures that affect spores' IM properties exhibited large differences in heat activation requirements for nutrient germination; and (iii) spore germination by 550 MPa of HP was also affected by heat activation, but the effects were relatively GR independent. The last results are consistent with heat activation affecting spores' IM and only indirectly affecting GRs. The 150- and 550-MPa HP germinations of Bacillus amyloliquefaciens spores, a potential surrogate for Clostridium botulinum spores in HP treatments of foods, were also stimulated by heat activation. PMID:25681191

  10. Bacterial spore survival after exposure to HZE particle bombardment -implication for the lithopanspermia hypothesis.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moeller, Ralf; Berger, Thomas; Matthiä, Daniel; Okayasu, Ryuichi; Kitamura, H.; Reitz, Guenther

    transcriptional response during spore germination" (Moeller et al., 2008 [3]). To simulate the interplanetary journey of a meteorite, stacks of spore-samples on gabbro slides in different depths were exposed. Spore survival and the rate of the induced mutations (i.e., sporulation-deficiency (Spo-)) depended on the LET of the applied species of ions as well as on the location (and depth) of the irradiated spores in the artificial meteorite. The exposure to high LET iron ions led to a low level of spore survival and increased frequency of mutation to Spo-compared to low-energy charged particles compared to the low LET helium ions. In order to obtain insights on the role of DNA repair by nonhomologous end joining (NHEJ), homologous recombination (HR) and apurinic/apyrimidinic (AP) endonucleases in B. subtilis spore resistance to high-energy charged particles has been studied in parallel. Spores deficient in NHEJ and AP endonucleases were significantly more sensitive to HZE particle bombardment than were the HR-mutant and wild-type spores, indicating that NHEJ and AP endonucleases provide DNA break repair pathways during spore germination. ((References: [1] Arrhenius, S. 1903. Die Verbreitung des Lebens im Weltenraum. Umschau 7:481-485.; [2] Nicholson, W. L. 2009. Ancient micronauts: interplanetary transport of microbes by cosmic impacts. Trends Mi-crobiol. 17:243-250.; [3] Moeller, R., P. Setlow, G. Horneck, T. Berger, G. Reitz, P. Rettberg, A. J. Doherty, R. Okayasu, and W. L. Nicholson. 2008. Roles of the major, small, acid-soluble spore proteins and spore-specific and universal DNA repair mechanisms in resistance of Bacillus subtilis spores to ionizing radiation from X-rays and high-energy charged-particle bombardment. J. Bacteriol. 190:1134-1140.))

  11. CotM of Bacillus subtilis, a member of the alpha-crystallin family of stress proteins, is induced during development and participates in spore outer coat formation.

    PubMed Central

    Henriques, A O; Beall, B W; Moran, C P

    1997-01-01

    We cloned and characterized a gene, cotM, that resides in the 173 degrees region of the Bacillus subtilis chromosome and is involved in spore outer coat assembly. We found that expression of the cotM gene is induced during development under sigma K control and is negatively regulated by the GerE transcription factor. Disruption of the cotM gene resulted in spores with an abnormal pattern of coat proteins. Electron microscopy revealed that the outer coat in cotM mutant spores had lost its multilayered type of organization, presenting a diffuse appearance. In particular, significant amounts of material were absent from the outer coat layers, which in some areas had a lamellar structure more typical of the inner coat. Occasionally, a pattern of closely spaced ridges protruding from its surface was observed. No deficiency associated with the inner coat or any other spore structure was found. CotM is related to the alpha-crystallin family of low-molecular-weight heat shock proteins, members of which can be substrates for transglutaminase-mediated protein cross-linking. CotM was not detected among the extractable spore coat proteins. These observations are consistent with a model according to which CotM is part of a cross-linked insoluble skeleton that surrounds the spore, serves as a matrix for the assembly of additional outer coat material, and confers structural stability to the final structure. PMID:9068633

  12. One of the Two Genes Encoding Nucleoid-Associated HU Proteins in Streptomyces coelicolor Is Developmentally Regulated and Specifically Involved in Spore Maturation▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Salerno, Paola; Larsson, Jessica; Bucca, Giselda; Laing, Emma; Smith, Colin P.; Flärdh, Klas

    2009-01-01

    Streptomyces genomes encode two homologs of the nucleoid-associated HU proteins. One of them, here designated HupA, is of a conventional type similar to E. coli HUα and HUβ, while the other, HupS, is a two-domain protein. In addition to the N-terminal part that is similar to that of HU proteins, it has a C-terminal domain that is similar to the alanine- and lysine-rich C termini of eukaryotic linker histones. Such two-domain HU proteins are found only among Actinobacteria. In this phylum some organisms have only a single HU protein of the type with a C-terminal histone H1-like domain (e.g., Hlp in Mycobacterium smegmatis), while others have only a single conventional HU. Yet others, including the streptomycetes, produce both types of HU proteins. We show here that the two HU genes in Streptomyces coelicolor are differentially regulated and that hupS is specifically expressed during sporulation, while hupA is expressed in vegetative hyphae. The developmental upregulation of hupS occurred in sporogenic aerial hyphal compartments and was dependent on the developmental regulators whiA, whiG, and whiI. HupS was found to be nucleoid associated in spores, and a hupS deletion mutant had an average nucleoid size in spores larger than that in the parent strain. The mutant spores were also defective in heat resistance and spore pigmentation, although they possessed apparently normal spore walls and displayed no increased sensitivity to detergents. Overall, the results show that HupS is specifically involved in sporulation and may affect nucleoid architecture and protection in spores of S. coelicolor. PMID:19717607

  13. Identification of a protein interacting with the spore wall protein SWP26 of Nosema bombycis in a cultured BmN cell line of silkworm.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Feng; Shen, Zhongyuan; Hou, Jiange; Zhang, Jiao; Geng, Tao; Tang, Xudong; Xu, Li; Guo, Xijie

    2013-07-01

    Nosema bombycis is a silkworm parasite that causes severe economic damage to sericulture worldwide. It is the first microsporidia to be described in the literature, and to date, very little molecular information is available regarding microsporidian physiology and their relationships with their hosts. Therefore, the interaction between the microsporidia N. bombycis and its host silkworm, Bombyx mori, was analyzed in this study. The microsporidian spore wall proteins (SWPs) play a specific role in spore adherence to host cells and recognition by the host during invasion. In this study, SWP26 fused with enhanced green fluorescence protein (EGFP) was expressed in BmN cells by using a Bac-to-Bac expression system. Subsequently, the turtle-like protein of B. mori (BmTLP) was determined to interact with SWP26 via the use of anti-EGFP microbeads. This interaction was then confirmed by yeast two-hybrid analysis. The BmTLP cDNA encodes a polypeptide of 447 amino acids that includes a putative signal peptide of 27 amino acid residues. In addition, the BmTLP protein contains 2 immunoglobulin (IG) domains and 2 IGc2-type domains, which is the typical domain structure of IG proteins. The results of this study indicated that SWP26 interacts with the IG-like protein BmTLP, which contributes to the infectivity of N. bombycis to its host silkworm. PMID:23542093

  14. Small protein biomarkers of culture in Bacillus spores detected using capillary liquid chromatography coupled with matrix assisted laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Wunschel, David; Wahl, Jon; Willse, Alan; Valentine, Nancy; Wahl, Karen

    2006-10-20

    Capillary liquid chromatography (cLC) coupled with matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) time-of-flight mass spectrometry (TOF-MS) was used to compare small proteins and peptides extracted from Bacillus subtilis spores grown on four different media. A single, efficient protein separation, compatible with MALDI-MS analysis, was employed to reduce competitive ionization between proteins, and thus interrogate more proteins than possible using direct MALDI-MS. The MALDI-MS data files for each fraction are assembled as two-dimensional data sets of retention time and mass information. This method of visualizing small protein data required careful attention to background correction as well as mass and retention time variability. The resulting data sets were used to create comparative displays of differences in protein profiles between different spore preparations. Protein differences were found between two different solid media in both phase bright and phase dark spore phenotype. The protein differences between two different liquid media were also examined. As an extension of this method, we have demonstrated that candidate protein biomarkers can be trypsin digested to provide identifying peptide fragment information following the cLC-MALDI experiment. We have demonstrated this method on two markers and utilized acid breakdown information to identify one additional marker for this organism. The resulting method can be used to identify discriminating proteins as potential biomarkers of growth media, which might ultimately be used for source attribution. PMID:16798120

  15. The SpmA/B and DacF proteins of Clostridium perfringens play important roles in spore heat resistance.

    PubMed

    Orsburn, Benjamin; Sucre, Katie; Popham, David L; Melville, Stephen B

    2009-02-01

    Strains of Clostridium perfringens that cause acute food poisoning have been shown to produce spores that are significantly more heat resistant than those of other strains. Previous studies demonstrated that the spore core density and the ratio of spore cortex peptidoglycan relative to the germ cell wall were factors that correlated with the heat resistance of a C. perfringens spore. To further evaluate these relationships, mutant strains of C. perfringens SM101 were constructed with null mutations in dacF, encoding a D,D-carboxypeptidase, and in the spmA-spmB operon, which is involved in spore core dehydration. The dacF mutant was shown to produce less spore cortex peptidoglycan and had a corresponding decrease in spore heat resistance. The spmA-spmB strain produced highly unstable spores with significantly lower core densities and increased heat sensitivity, which were easily destroyed during treatments affecting the spore coat layers. These results support the previous assertion that a threshold core density as well as a high ratio of cortex peptidoglycan relative to the germ cell wall contribute to the formation of a more heat-resistant spore in this species. PMID:19189487

  16. Clostridium difficile Spore-Macrophage Interactions: Spore Survival

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

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

  17. Purification and characterization of the acid soluble 26-kDa polypeptide from soybean seeds.

    PubMed

    Momma, M; Haraguchi, K; Saito, M; Chikuni, K; Harada, K

    1997-08-01

    Whey proteins from soybean seeds of Japanese varieties were analyzed by SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE). Among 11 varieties of soybean, three green and one black soybeans lacked a 26-kDa band that was found in all yellow soybeans. In this paper, the 26-kDa protein was named AS26k (acid soluble 26-kDa protein) temporarily. The AS26k protein was purified from Glycine max cv. Nattosyoryu, which is yellow soybean, through four purification steps: 30-35% saturated ammonium sulfate fractionation, ion exchange chromatography on S Sepharose Fast Flow, gel filtration on Sephadex G-100, and hydrophobic chromatography on phenyl Sepharose CL-4B. Purified AS26k was cleaved with V8 proteinase from Staphylococcus aureus or CNBr. The cleaved polypeptide contained two typical dehydrin motif sequences: DEYGNPV and (M)DKIKEKLPG, and a 19 amino acids sequence similar to a pea dehydrin. Native AS26k had a molecular mass of 32 kDa on gel filtration and a pl of 7.2 on two-dimensional PAGE. Similarly to other dehydrins and late embryogenesis abundant (LEA) proteins, AS26k was rich in hydrophilic amino acids, and highly heat stable. These results showed that AS26k was a dehydrin, a group II LEA protein in soybean seeds. PMID:9301109

  18. Small protein biomarkers of culture in Bacillus spores detected using capillary liquid chromatography coupled with matrix assisted laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry

    SciTech Connect

    Wunschel, David S.; Wahl, Jon H.; Willse, Alan R.; Valentine, Nancy B.; Wahl, Karen L.

    2006-10-20

    Capillary liquid chromatography (cLC) coupled with matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) time-of-flight mass spectrometry (TOF-MS) was used to compare small proteins and peptides extracted from Bacillus subtilis spores grown on four different media. A single, efficient protein separation, compatible with MALDI-MS analysis, was employed to reduce competitive ionization between proteins, and thus interrogate more proteins than possible using direct MALDI-MS. The MALDI-MS data files for each fraction are assembled as two dimensional data sets of retention time and mass information. This method of visualizing small protein data required careful attention to background correction as well as mass and retention time variability. The resulting data sets were used to create comparative displays of differences in protein profiles between different spore preparations. Protein differences were found between two different solid media in both phase bright and phase dark conditions. The protein differences between two different liquid media were also examined. As an extension of this method, we have demonstrated that candidate protein biomarkers can be trypsin digested to provide identifying peptide fragment information following the cLC-MALDI experiment. We have demonstrated this method on two markers and utilized acid breakdown information to identify one additional marker for this organism. The resulting method can be used to identify discriminating proteins as potential biomarkers of growth media, which might ultimately be used for source attribution.

  19. A small family of Phakopsora pachyrhizi proteins localized to the spore wall

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Phakopsora pachyrhizi is the causal agent of Asian soybean rust, which has become established over an expanding range in the U.S. We previously identified and characterized a set of extracellular proteins recovered from P. pachyrhizi urediniospore germination media. Immunolocalization studies conf...

  20. Amino acid residues in the GerAB protein important in the function and assembly of the alanine spore germination receptor of Bacillus subtilis 168.

    PubMed

    Cooper, Gareth R; Moir, Anne

    2011-05-01

    The paradigm gerA operon is required for endospore germination in response to c-alanine as the sole germinant, and the three protein products, GerAA, GerAB, and GerAC are predicted to form a receptor complex in the spore inner membrane. GerAB shows homology to the amino acid-polyamine-organocation (APC) family of single-component transporters and is predicted to be an integral membrane protein with 10 membrane-spanning helices. Site-directed mutations were introduced into the gerAB gene at its natural location on the chromosome. Alterations to some charged or potential helix-breaking residues within membrane spans affected receptor function dramatically. In some cases, this is likely to reflect the complete loss of the GerA receptor complex, as judged by the absence of the germinant receptor protein GerAC, which suggests that the altered GerAB protein itself may be unstable or that the altered structure destabilizes the complex. Mutants that have a null phenotype for Instituto de Biotecnología de León, INBIOTEC, Parque Científico de León, Av. Real, 1, 24006 León, Spain-alanine germination but retain GerAC protein at near-normal levels are more likely to define amino acid residues of functional, rather than structural, importance. Single-amino-acid substitutions in each of the GerAB and GerAA proteins can prevent incorporation of GerAC protein into the spore; this provides strong evidence that the proteins within a specific receptor interact and that these interactions are required for receptor assembly. The lipoprotein nature of the GerAC receptor subunit is also important; an amino acid change in the prelipoprotein signal sequence in the gerAC1 mutant results in the absence of GerAC protein from the spore. PMID:21378181

  1. YqfS from Bacillus subtilis Is a Spore Protein and a New Functional Member of the Type IV Apurinic/Apyrimidinic-Endonuclease Family

    PubMed Central

    Salas-Pacheco, José M.; Urtiz-Estrada, Norma; Martínez-Cadena, Guadalupe; Yasbin, Ronald E.; Pedraza-Reyes, Mario

    2003-01-01

    The enzymatic properties and the physiological function of the type IV apurinic/apyrimidinic (AP)-endonuclease homolog of Bacillus subtilis, encoded by yqfS, a gene specifically expressed in spores, were studied here. To this end, a recombinant YqfS protein containing an N-terminal His6 tag was synthesized in Escherichia coli and purified to homogeneity. An anti-His6-YqfS polyclonal antibody exclusively localized YqfS in cell extracts prepared from B. subtilis spores. The His6-YqfS protein demonstrated enzymatic properties characteristic of the type IV family of DNA repair enzymes, such as AP-endonucleases and 3′-phosphatases. However, the purified protein lacked both 5′-phosphatase and exonuclease III activities. YqfS showed not only a high level of amino acid identity with E. coli Nfo but also a high resistance to inactivation by EDTA, in the presence of DNA containing AP sites (AP-DNA). These results suggest that YqfS possesses a trinuclear Zn center in which the three metal atoms are intimately coordinated by nine conserved basic residues and two water molecules. Electrophoretic mobility shift assays demonstrated that YqfS possesses structural properties that permit it to bind and scan undamaged DNA as well as to strongly interact with AP-DNA. The ability of yqfS to genetically complement the DNA repair deficiency of an E. coli mutant lacking the major AP-endonucleases Nfo and exonuclease III strongly suggests that its product confers protection to cells against the deleterious effects of oxidative promoters and alkylating agents. Thus, we conclude that YqfS of B. subtilis is a spore-specific protein that has structural and enzymatic properties required to participate in the repair of AP sites and 3′ blocking groups of DNA generated during both spore dormancy and germination. PMID:12949090

  2. Physical interaction and assembly of Bacillus subtilis spore coat proteins CotE and CotZ studied by atomic force microscopy.

    PubMed

    Liu, Huiqing; Qiao, Haiyan; Krajcikova, Daniela; Zhang, Zhe; Wang, Hongda; Barak, Imrich; Tang, Jilin

    2016-08-01

    The spore of Bacillus subtilis, a dormant type of cell, is surrounded by a complex multilayered protein structure known as the coat. It is composed of over 70 proteins and essential for the spore to withstand extreme environmental conditions and allow germination under favorable conditions. However, understanding how the properties of the coat arise from the interactions among all these proteins is an important challenge. Moreover, many specific protein-protein interactions among the coat proteins are crucial for coat assembly. In this study, atomic force microscopy (AFM) based single molecule force spectroscopy (SMFS) was applied to investigate the interaction as a dynamic process between two morphogenetic coat proteins, CotE and CotZ. The unbinding force and kinetic parameters characterizing the interaction between CotE and CotZ were obtained. It is found that there is a strong affinity between CotE and CotZ. Furthermore, the assembly behaviors of CotE and CotZ, individually or in combination, were studied by AFM at solid-liquid interfaces. Our results revealed that CotE-CotZ assembly is dependent on their molar ratios and the interaction between CotE and CotZ involves in the CotE-CotZ assembly. PMID:27320701

  3. Lyophilized spore dispenser

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jessup, A. D. (Inventor)

    1973-01-01

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

  4. Identifying and Inactivating Bacterial Spores

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Newcombe, David; Dekas, Anne; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri

    2009-01-01

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

  5. Bacillus subtilis serine/threonine protein kinase YabT is involved in spore development via phosphorylation of a bacterial recombinase

    PubMed Central

    Bidnenko, Vladimir; Shi, Lei; Kobir, Ahasanul; Ventroux, Magali; Pigeonneau, Nathalie; Henry, Céline; Trubuil, Alain; Noirot-Gros, Marie-Françoise; Mijakovic, Ivan

    2013-01-01

    We characterized YabT, a serine/threonine kinase of the Hanks family, from Bacillus subtilis. YabT is a putative transmembrane kinase that lacks the canonical extracellular signal receptor domain. We demonstrate that YabT possesses a DNA-binding motif essential for its activation. In vivo YabT is expressed during sporulation and localizes to the asymmetric septum. Cells devoid of YabT sporulate more slowly and exhibit reduced resistance to DNA damage during sporulation. We established that YabT phosphorylates DNA-recombinase RecA at the residue serine 2. A non-phosphorylatable mutant of RecA exhibits the same phenotype as the ΔyabT mutant, and a phosphomimetic mutant of RecA complements ΔyabT, suggesting that YabT acts via RecA phosphorylation in vivo. During spore development, phosphorylation facilitates the formation of transient and mobile RecA foci that exhibit a scanning-like movement associated to the nucleoid in the mother cell. In some cells these foci persist at the end of spore development. We show that persistent RecA foci, which presumably coincide with irreparable lesions, are mutually exclusive with the completion of spore morphogenesis. Our results highlight similarities between the bacterial serine/threonine kinase YabT and eukaryal kinases C-Abl and Mec1, which are also activated by DNA, and phosphorylate proteins involved in DNA damage repair. PMID:23634894

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-11-01

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

  7. Spores Disperse, Too!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schumann, Donna N.

    1981-01-01

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

  8. Localization of the stress protein SP21 in indole-induced spores, fruiting bodies, and heat-shocked cells of Stigmatella aurantiaca.

    PubMed Central

    Lünsdorf, H; Schairer, H U; Heidelbach, M

    1995-01-01

    The localization and distribution of the stress protein SP21 in indole-induced vegetative cells, fruiting bodies, and heat shocked cells of Stigmatella aurantiaca were determined by immunoelectron microscopy. SP21 was found at the cell periphery in heat-shocked cells and either at the cell periphery or within the cytoplasm in indole-induced cells, often concentrated in clusters. In fruiting-body-derived spores, SP21 was located mainly at the cell wall, preferentially at the outer periphery. Furthermore, SP21 antigen was associated with cellular remnants within the stalk and within the peripheral horizon next to the fruiting body. PMID:8522514

  9. An ancient and conserved function for Armadillo-related proteins in the control of spore and seed germination by abscisic acid.

    PubMed

    Moody, Laura A; Saidi, Younousse; Gibbs, Daniel J; Choudhary, Anushree; Holloway, Daniel; Vesty, Eleanor F; Bansal, Kiran Kaur; Bradshaw, Susan J; Coates, Juliet C

    2016-08-01

    Armadillo-related proteins regulate development throughout eukaryotic kingdoms. In the flowering plant Arabidopsis thaliana, Armadillo-related ARABIDILLO proteins promote multicellular root branching. ARABIDILLO homologues exist throughout land plants, including early-diverging species lacking true roots, suggesting that early-evolving ARABIDILLOs had additional biological roles. Here we investigated, using molecular genetics, the conservation and diversification of ARABIDILLO protein function in plants separated by c. 450 million years of evolution. We demonstrate that ARABIDILLO homologues in the moss Physcomitrella patens regulate a previously undiscovered inhibitory effect of abscisic acid (ABA) on spore germination. Furthermore, we show that A. thaliana ARABIDILLOs function similarly during seed germination. Early-diverging ARABIDILLO homologues from both P. patens and the lycophyte Selaginella moellendorffii can substitute for ARABIDILLO function during A. thaliana root development and seed germination. We conclude that (1) ABA was co-opted early in plant evolution to regulate functionally analogous processes in spore- and seed-producing plants and (2) plant ARABIDILLO germination functions were co-opted early into both gametophyte and sporophyte, with a specific rooting function evolving later in the land plant lineage. PMID:27040616

  10. The fission yeast pleckstrin homology domain protein Spo7 is essential for initiation of forespore membrane assembly and spore morphogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Nakamura-Kubo, Michiko; Hirata, Aiko; Shimoda, Chikashi; Nakamura, Taro

    2011-01-01

    Sporulation in fission yeast represents a unique mode of cell division in which a new cell is formed within the cytoplasm of a mother cell. This event is accompanied by formation of the forespore membrane (FSM), which becomes the plasma membrane of spores. At prophase II, the spindle pole body (SPB) forms an outer plaque, from which formation of the FSM is initiated. Several components of the SPB play an indispensable role in SPB modification, and therefore in sporulation. In this paper, we report the identification of a novel SPB component, Spo7, which has a pleckstrin homology (PH) domain. We found that Spo7 was essential for initiation of FSM assembly, but not for SPB modification. Spo7 directly bound to Meu14, a component of the leading edge of the FSM, and was essential for proper localization of Meu14. The PH domain of Spo7 had affinity for phosphatidylinositol 3-phosphate (PI3P). spo7 mutants lacking the PH domain showed aberrant spore morphology, similar to that of meu14 and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (pik3) mutants. Our study suggests that Spo7 coordinates formation of the leading edge and initiation of FSM assembly, thereby accomplishing accurate formation of the FSM. PMID:21775631

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

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shiwei; Setlow, Peter

    2015-01-01

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

  12. Analysis of Bacillus globigii spores by CE.

    PubMed

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

    2008-02-01

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

  13. Hydrazine inactivates bacillus spores

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2005-01-01

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

  14. Memory of Germinant Stimuli in Bacterial Spores

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2005-01-01

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

  16. Bacillus subtilis Spore Inner Membrane Proteome.

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-01

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

  17. Protection of Bacillus pumilus spores by catalases.

    PubMed

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

    2012-09-01

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

  18. Cryopreservation of fern spores

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  19. Rapid onsite assessment of spore viability.

    SciTech Connect

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

    2005-12-01

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

  20. Crystal structure of an antifungal osmotin-like protein from Calotropis procera and its effects on Fusarium solani spores, as revealed by atomic force microscopy: Insights into the mechanism of action.

    PubMed

    Ramos, Marcio V; de Oliveira, Raquel S B; Pereira, Humberto M; Moreno, Frederico B M B; Lobo, Marina D P; Rebelo, Luciana M; Brandão-Neto, José; de Sousa, Jeanlex S; Monteiro-Moreira, Ana C O; Freitas, Cléverson D T; Grangeiro, Thalles Barbosa

    2015-11-01

    CpOsm is an antifungal osmotin/thaumatin-like protein purified from the latex of Calotropis procera. The protein is relatively thermostable and retains its antifungal activity over a wide pH range; therefore, it may be useful in the development of new antifungal drugs or transgenic crops with enhanced resistance to phytopathogenic fungi. To gain further insight into the mechanism of action of CpOsm, its three-dimensional structure was determined, and the effects of the protein on Fusarium solani spores were investigated by atomic force microscopy (AFM). The atomic structure of CpOsm was solved at a resolution of 1.61Å, and it contained 205 amino acid residues and 192 water molecules, with a final R-factor of 18.12% and an Rfree of 21.59%. The CpOsm structure belongs to the thaumatin superfamily fold and is characterized by three domains stabilized by eight disulfide bonds and a prominent charged cleft, which runs the length of the front side of the molecule. Similarly to other antifungal thaumatin-like proteins, the cleft of CpOsm is predominantly acidic. AFM images of F. solani spores treated with CpOsm resulted in striking morphological changes being induced by the protein. Spores treated with CpOsm were wrinkled, and the volume of these cells was reduced by approximately 80%. Treated cells were covered by a shell of CpOsm molecules, and the leakage of cytoplasmic content from these cells was also observed. Based on the structural features of CpOsm and the effects that the protein produces on F. solani spores, a possible mechanism of action is suggested and discussed. PMID:26456062

  1. A study of Ganoderma lucidum spores by FTIR microspectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-06-01

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

  2. Electrochemical immunosensor for detecting the spore wall protein of Nosema bombycis based on the amplification of hemin/G-quadruplex DNAzyme concatamers functionalized Pt@Pd nanowires.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qin; Song, Yue; Chai, Yaqin; Pan, Guoqing; Li, Tian; Yuan, Yali; Yuan, Ruo

    2014-10-15

    In this work, an ultrasensitive electrochemical immunosensor for detecting the Pebrine disease related spore wall protein of Nosema bombycis (SWP N.b) was fabricated based on the amplification of hemin/G-quadruplex functionalized Pt@Pd nanowires (Pt@PdNWs). The synthesized Pt@PdNWs possessed large surface area, which could effectively improve the immobilization amount of hemin/G-quadruplex DNAzyme concatamers produced via hybridization chain reaction (HCR). In the presence of SWP N.b, the hemin/G-quadruplex labeled Pt@PdNWs bioconjugations was captured on electrode surface and thus obtained electrochemical signal. After the addition of NADH into the electrolytic cell, hemin/G-quadruplex firstly acted as an NADH oxidase to locally produce H2O2 in the presence of dissolved O2. Then, the generated H2O2 would be quickly reduced via hemin/G-quadruplex as a horseradish peroxidase mimicking (HRP-mimicking) DNAzyme, which finally promoted the self-redox reaction of hemin/G-quadruplex and a greatly enhanced electrochemical signal was obtained. Furthermore, Pt@PdNWs with excellent electrocatalytic performance could also amplify electrochemical signal. With these amplification factors, the electrochemical immunosensor exhibited a wide linear range from 0.001 ng mL(-1) to 100 ng mL(-1) with a detection limit (LOD) of 0.24 pg mL(-1), providing a new promise for the diagnosis of Pebrine disease. PMID:24787126

  3. L-cysteine induced hemin/G-quadruplex concatemers electrocatalytic amplification with Pt-Pd supported on fullerene as a nanocarrier for sensing the spore wall protein of Nosema bombycis.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qin; Song, Yue; Xie, Hua; Chai, Yaqin; Yuan, Yali; Yuan, Ruo

    2015-01-25

    This work described a pseudobienzyme electrocatalytically amplified immunosensor for sensing the spore wall protein of Nosema bombycis by adopting L-cysteine as the electrocatalytic substance to generate H2O2in situ with the aid of hemin/G-quadruplex concatemers loaded onto C60@Pt-Pd. The hemin/G-quadruplex here is also acting as the probe for electrochemical signal output. PMID:25473932

  4. Influence of neutral salts on the hydrothermal stability of acid-soluble collagen.

    PubMed

    Brown, E M; Farrell, H M; Wildermuth, R J

    2000-02-01

    The thermal stability of acid-soluble collagens was studied by circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy. Adult bovine dermal collagen (BDC), rat-tail tendon collagen (RTC), and calf skin collagen (CSC) were compared. Despite some variability in amino acid composition and apparent molecular weight, the CD spectra for helical and unordered collagen structures were essentially the same for all the sources. The melting of these collagens occurs as a two-stage process characterized by a pretransition (Tp) followed by complete denaturation (Td). The characteristic temperatures vary with the source of the collagen; for mature collagens (BDC, RTC) Tp = 30 degrees C and Td = 36 degrees C, and for CSC Tp = 34 degrees C and Td = 40 degrees C. Neutral salts, NaCl or KCl, at low concentrations (0.02-0.2 M) appear to bind to the collagens and shift the thermal transitions of these collagens to lower temperatures. PMID:10945432

  5. Acid-Soluble Nucleotides in an Asporogenous Mutant of Bacillus subtilis

    PubMed Central

    Chow, C. T.; Takahashi, I.

    1972-01-01

    An asporogenous mutant of Bacillus subtilis Sp−H12-3, which is considered to have a block at stage 0, showed general growth characteristics similar to those of sporulating cultures. However, a sudden increase in the total amount of acid-soluble nucleotides observed at t2 in sporulating bacteria was completely absent in this mutant. In sporulating cells, a marked increase in two nucleotides which were identified to be uridine diphosphate (UDP)-galactose and UDP-N-acetylglucosamine was noted, whereas UDP-glucose appeared to be accumulated in the mutant cells at t2. No unusual nucleotides were found in the strains of B. subtilis examined. The possible role of these UDP derivatives in early stages of sporulation in B. subtilis is discussed. PMID:4622128

  6. The removal of kaolinite suspensions by acid-soluble and water-soluble chitosans.

    PubMed

    Chung, Ying-Chien; Wu, Li-Chun; Chen, Chih-Yu

    2013-01-01

    Chitosan is a potential substitute for traditional aluminium salts in water treatment systems. This research compared the coagulant performance of acid-soluble chitosan with water-soluble chitosan and with coagulant mixtures of chitosan and aluminium sulfate (alum). We also assessed the coagulant performance of chitosan and poly-aluminium chloride (PAC) to remove kaolinite from turbid water. In addition, we evaluated their respective coagulation efficiencies under different coagulant concentrations, degrees of turbidity (NTU) and pH levels. Furthermore, we determined the size and settling velocity of flocs formed by these coagulants in order to illustrate major factors affecting kaolinite coagulation. The optimal concentrations of acid- versus water- soluble chitosan required to remove kaolinite from a 300 NTU suspension were 4.0 and 10.0 mg/l, respectively-with individual efficiencies of 79.3 and 92.4%, in that order. Optimum concentrations ofwater-soluble chitosan demonstrated a broader range than that of acid-soluble chitosan. In addition, it is of note that chitosan/alum and chitosan/PAC water-soluble coagulant mixtures demonstrated much wider ranges of optimal concentrations for turbidity reduction than either alum or PAC alone. Moreover, our water-soluble chitosan coagulant mixtures produced denser floc with elevated settling velocities that favour cost savings relevant to both installation and operational expenses. Based on our observations of these noteworthy performances, we confidently propose that a coagulant mixture with a 1:1 mass ratio of chitosan and alum presents a remarkably more cost-effective alternative to the use of chitosan alone in water treatment systems. PMID:23530342

  7. Interlaboratory evaluation of cellulosic acid-soluble internal air sampling capsules for multi-element analysis.

    PubMed

    Andrews, Ronnee N; Feng, H Amy; Ashley, Kevin

    2016-01-01

    An interlaboratory study was carried out to evaluate the use of acid-soluble cellulosic air sampling capsules for their suitability in the measurement of trace elements in workplace atmospheric samples. These capsules are used as inserts to perform closed-face cassette sample collection for occupational exposure monitoring. The interlaboratory study was performed in accordance with NIOSH guidelines that describe statistical procedures for evaluating measurement accuracy of air monitoring methods. The performance evaluation materials used consisted of cellulose acetate capsules melded to mixed-cellulose ester filters that were dosed with multiple elements from commercial standard aqueous solutions. The cellulosic capsules were spiked with the following 33 elements of interest in workplace air monitoring: Ag, Al, As, Ba, Be, Ca, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, In, K, La, Li, Mg, Mn, Mo, Ni, P, Pb, Sb, Se, Sn, Sr, Te, Ti, Tl, V, W, Y, Zn, Zr. The elemental loading levels were certified by an accredited provider of certified reference materials. Triplicates of media blanks and multielement-spiked capsules at three different elemental loadings were sent to each participating laboratory; the elemental loading levels were not revealed to the laboratories. The volunteer participating laboratories were asked to prepare the samples by acid dissolution and to analyze aliquots of extracted samples by inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry in accordance with NIOSH methods. It was requested that the study participants report their analytical results in units of μg of each target element per internal capsule sample. For the majority of the elements investigated (30 out of 33), the study accuracy estimates obtained satisfied the NIOSH accuracy criterion (A < 25%). This investigation demonstrates the utility of acid-soluble internal sampling capsules for multielement analysis by atomic spectrometry. PMID:26308974

  8. Walking and jumping spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marmottant, Philippe

    2012-02-01

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

  9. The coagulation characteristics of humic acid by using acid-soluble chitosan, water-soluble chitosan, and chitosan coagulant mixtures.

    PubMed

    Chen, Chih-Yu; Wu, Chung-Yu; Chung, Ying-Chien

    2015-01-01

    Chitosan is a potential substitute for traditional aluminium salts in water treatment systems. This study compared the characteristics of humic acid (HA) removal by using acid-soluble chitosan, water-soluble chitosan, and coagulant mixtures of chitosan with aluminium sulphate (alum) or polyaluminium chloride (PACl). In addition, we evaluated their respective coagulation efficiencies at various coagulant concentrations, pH values, turbidities, and hardness levels. Furthermore, we determined the size and settling velocity of flocs formed by these coagulants to identify the major factors affecting HA coagulation. The coagulation efficiency of acid- and water-soluble chitosan for 15 mg/l of HA was 74.4% and 87.5%, respectively. The optimal coagulation range of water-soluble chitosan (9-20 mg/l) was broader than that of acid-soluble chitosan (4-8 mg/l). Notably, acid-soluble chitosan/PACl and water-soluble chitosan/alum coagulant mixtures exhibited a higher coagulation efficiency for HA than for PACl or alum alone. Furthermore, these coagulant mixtures yielded an acceptable floc settling velocity and savings in both installation and operational expenses. Based on these results, we confidently assert that coagulant mixtures with a 1:1 mass ratio of acid-soluble chitosan/PACl and water-soluble chitosan/alum provide a substantially more cost-effective alternative to using chitosan alone for removing HA from water. PMID:25362971

  10. Fifth international fungus spore conference

    SciTech Connect

    Timberlake, W.E.

    1993-04-01

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

  11. Characterisation of acid-soluble and pepsin-solubilised collagen from jellyfish (Cyanea nozakii Kishinouye).

    PubMed

    Zhang, Junjie; Duan, Rui; Huang, Lei; Song, Yujie; Regenstein, Joe M

    2014-05-01

    Annual outbreaks of the Jellyfish (Cyanea nozakii Kishinouye) in the waters of the Yellow Sea and the East China Sea are regarded as a nuisance. Thus, utilizing this jellyfish species is of great significance to reduce harm to fisheries and marine environments. The yield of the acid-soluble collagens (ASCs) from the C. nozakii umbrella was 13.0% (dry weight) and that of the pepsin-solubilised collagens (PSCs) was 5.5% (dry weight). The SDS-PAGE patterns of the ASCs and PSCs differed from that of type I collagen, which indicate the presence of (α1)3. The denaturation temperature (Td) of the collagens was approximately 23.8°C. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy proved that the ASCs and PSCs retained their helical structures and the As, Pb, and Hg content of the collagens, detected by ICP-MS, were considerably lower than the national standards. The results suggest that collagens isolated from C. nozakii can potentially be used as an alternative source of collagen for use in various applications. PMID:24360414

  12. Anthrax Spores under a microscope

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

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

  13. Germination of Spores of Bacillus Species: What We Know and Do Not Know

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Spores of Bacillus species can remain in their dormant and resistant states for years, but exposure to agents such as specific nutrients can cause spores' return to life within minutes in the process of germination. This process requires a number of spore-specific proteins, most of which are in or associated with the inner spore membrane (IM). These proteins include the (i) germinant receptors (GRs) that respond to nutrient germinants, (ii) GerD protein, which is essential for GR-dependent germination, (iii) SpoVA proteins that form a channel in spores' IM through which the spore core's huge depot of dipicolinic acid is released during germination, and (iv) cortex-lytic enzymes (CLEs) that degrade the large peptidoglycan cortex layer, allowing the spore core to take up much water and swell, thus completing spore germination. While much has been learned about nutrient germination, major questions remain unanswered, including the following. (i) How do nutrient germinants penetrate through spores' outer layers to access GRs in the IM? (ii) What happens during the highly variable and often long lag period between the exposure of spores to nutrient germinants and the commitment of spores to germinate? (iii) What do GRs and GerD do, and how do these proteins interact? (iv) What is the structure of the SpoVA channel in spores' IM, and how is this channel gated? (v) What is the precise state of the spore IM, which has a number of novel properties even though its lipid composition is very similar to that of growing cells? (vi) How is CLE activity regulated such that these enzymes act only when germination has been initiated? (vii) And finally, how does the germination of spores of clostridia compare with that of spores of bacilli? PMID:24488313

  14. Identification of a New Gene Essential for Germination of Bacillus subtilis Spores with Ca2+-Dipicolinate

    PubMed Central

    Ragkousi, Katerina; Eichenberger, Patrick; van Ooij, Christiaan; Setlow, Peter

    2003-01-01

    Bacillus subtilis spores can germinate with a 1:1 chelate of Ca2+ and dipicolinic acid (DPA), a compound present at high levels in the spore core. Using a genetic screen to identify genes encoding proteins that are specifically involved in spore germination by Ca2+-DPA, three mutations were identified. One was in the gene encoding the cortex lytic enzyme, CwlJ, that was previously shown to be essential for spore germination by Ca2+-DPA. The other two were mapped to an open reading frame, ywdL, encoding a protein of unknown function. Analysis of ywdL expression showed that the gene is expressed during sporulation in the mother cell compartment of the sporulating cell and that its transcription is σE dependent. Functional characterization of YwdL demonstrated that it is a new spore coat protein that is essential for the presence of CwlJ in the spore coat. Assembly of YwdL itself into the spore coat is dependent on the coat morphogenetic proteins CotE and SpoIVA. However, other than lacking CwlJ, ywdL spores have no obvious defect in their spore coat. Because of the role for YwdL in a part of the spore germination process, we propose renaming ywdL as a spore germination gene, gerQ. PMID:12644503

  15. Binding Affinity of Glycoconjugates to BACILLUS Spores and Toxins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rasol, Aveen; Eassa, Souzan; Tarasenko, Olga

    2010-04-01

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

  16. Spore: Spawning Evolutionary Misconceptions?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2010-10-01

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

  17. Thermal Spore Exposure Vessels

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2006-01-01

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

  18. Spore collection and elimination apparatus and method

    DOEpatents

    Czajkowski, Carl; Warren, Barbara Panessa

    2007-04-03

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

  19. Comparative Analysis of Bacillus subtilis Spores and Monophosphoryl Lipid A as Adjuvants of Protein-Based Mycobacterium tuberculosis-Based Vaccines: Partial Requirement for Interleukin-17A for Induction of Protective Immunity

    PubMed Central

    Esparza-Gonzalez, Sandra C.; Troy, Amber R.

    2014-01-01

    The development of adjuvants for vaccines has become an important area of research as the number of protein-based vaccines against infectious pathogens increases. Currently, there are a number of adjuvant-based Mycobacterium tuberculosis vaccines in clinical trials that have shown efficacy in animal models. Despite these novel adjuvants, there is still a need to design new and more versatile adjuvants that have minimal adverse side effects but produce robust long-lasting adaptive immune responses. To this end, we hypothesized that Bacillus subtilis spores may provide the appropriate innate signals that are required to generate such vaccine-mediated responses, which would be sufficient to reduce the mycobacterial burden after infection with M. tuberculosis. In addition, we compared the response generated by B. subtilis spores to that generated by monophosphoryl lipid A (MPL), which has been used extensively to test tuberculosis vaccines. The well-characterized, 6-kDa early secretory antigenic target of M. tuberculosis (ESAT-6; Rv3875) was used as a test antigen to determine the T cell activation potential of each adjuvant. Inoculated into mice, B. subtilis spores induced a strong proinflammatory response and Th1 immunity, similar to MPL; however, unlike MPL formulated with dimethyldioctadecylammonium (DDA) bromide, it failed to induce significant levels of interleukin-17A (IL-17A) and was unable to significantly reduce the mycobacterial burden after pulmonary infection with M. tuberculosis. Further analysis of the activity of MPL-DDA suggested that IL-17A was required for protective immunity. Taken together, the data emphasize the requirement for a network of cytokines that are essential for protective immunity. PMID:24477855

  20. Isolation and characterization of Bacillus megaterium mutants containing decreased levels of spore protease.

    PubMed Central

    Postemsky, C J; Dignam, S S; Setlow, P

    1978-01-01

    A proteolytic activity present in spores of Bacillus megaterium has previously been implicated in the initiation of hydrolysis of the A, B, and C proteins which are degraded during spore germination. Four mutants of B. megaterium containing 20 to 30% of the normal level of spore proteolytic activity have been isolated. Partial purification of the protease from wild-type spores by a reviewed procedure resulted in the resolution of spore protease activity on the A, B, and C proteins into two peaks--a major one (protease II) and a minor one (protease I). The protease mutants tested lacked active protease II. All of the mutants exhibited a decreased rate of degradation of the A, B, and C proteins during spore germination at 30 degrees C, but degradation of the proteins did occur. Degradation of the A, B, and C proteins during germination of the mutant spores was decreased neither by blockade of ATP production nor by germination at 44 degrees C. Initiation of spore germination was normal in all four mutants, and all four mutants went through outgrowth, grew, and sporulated normally in rich medium. Similarly, outgrowth of spores of two of the four mutants was normal in minimal medium at 30 degrees C. In the two mutants studied, the kinetics of loss of spore heat resistance and spore UV light resistance during germination were identical to those of wild-type spores. This indicates that the A, B, and C proteins alone are not sufficient to account for the heat or UV light resistance of the dormant spore. PMID:99436

  1. Cytological and proteomic analyses of horsetail (Equisetum arvense L.) spore germination.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Qi; Gao, Jing; Suo, Jinwei; Chen, Sixue; Wang, Tai; Dai, Shaojun

    2015-01-01

    Spermatophyte pollen tubes and root hairs have been used as single-cell-type model systems to understand the molecular processes underlying polar growth of plant cells. Horsetail (Equisetum arvense L.) is a perennial herb species in Equisetopsida, which creates separately growing spring and summer stems in its life cycle. The mature chlorophyllous spores produced from spring stems can germinate without dormancy. Here we report the cellular features and protein expression patterns in five stages of horsetail spore germination (mature spores, rehydrated spores, double-celled spores, germinated spores, and spores with protonemal cells). Using 2-DE combined with mass spectrometry, 80 proteins were found to be abundance changed upon spore germination. Among them, proteins involved in photosynthesis, protein turnover, and energy supply were over-represented. Thirteen proteins appeared as proteoforms on the gels, indicating the potential importance of post-translational modification. In addition, the dynamic changes of ascorbate peroxidase, peroxiredoxin, and dehydroascorbate reductase implied that reactive oxygen species homeostasis is critical in regulating cell division and tip-growth. The time course of germination and diverse expression patterns of proteins in photosynthesis, energy supply, lipid and amino acid metabolism indicated that heterotrophic and autotrophic metabolism were necessary in light-dependent germination of the spores. Twenty-six proteins were involved in protein synthesis, folding, and degradation, indicating that protein turnover is vital to spore germination and rhizoid tip-growth. Furthermore, the altered abundance of 14-3-3 protein, small G protein Ran, actin, and caffeoyl-CoA O-methyltransferase revealed that signaling transduction, vesicle trafficking, cytoskeleton dynamics, and cell wall modulation were critical to cell division and polar growth. These findings lay a foundation toward understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying fern

  2. Cytological and proteomic analyses of horsetail (Equisetum arvense L.) spore germination

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Qi; Gao, Jing; Suo, Jinwei; Chen, Sixue; Wang, Tai; Dai, Shaojun

    2015-01-01

    Spermatophyte pollen tubes and root hairs have been used as single-cell-type model systems to understand the molecular processes underlying polar growth of plant cells. Horsetail (Equisetum arvense L.) is a perennial herb species in Equisetopsida, which creates separately growing spring and summer stems in its life cycle. The mature chlorophyllous spores produced from spring stems can germinate without dormancy. Here we report the cellular features and protein expression patterns in five stages of horsetail spore germination (mature spores, rehydrated spores, double-celled spores, germinated spores, and spores with protonemal cells). Using 2-DE combined with mass spectrometry, 80 proteins were found to be abundance changed upon spore germination. Among them, proteins involved in photosynthesis, protein turnover, and energy supply were over-represented. Thirteen proteins appeared as proteoforms on the gels, indicating the potential importance of post-translational modification. In addition, the dynamic changes of ascorbate peroxidase, peroxiredoxin, and dehydroascorbate reductase implied that reactive oxygen species homeostasis is critical in regulating cell division and tip-growth. The time course of germination and diverse expression patterns of proteins in photosynthesis, energy supply, lipid and amino acid metabolism indicated that heterotrophic and autotrophic metabolism were necessary in light-dependent germination of the spores. Twenty-six proteins were involved in protein synthesis, folding, and degradation, indicating that protein turnover is vital to spore germination and rhizoid tip-growth. Furthermore, the altered abundance of 14-3-3 protein, small G protein Ran, actin, and caffeoyl-CoA O-methyltransferase revealed that signaling transduction, vesicle trafficking, cytoskeleton dynamics, and cell wall modulation were critical to cell division and polar growth. These findings lay a foundation toward understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying fern

  3. Genome Diversity of Spore-Forming Firmicutes

    PubMed Central

    Galperin, Michael Y.

    2015-01-01

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

  4. "Spore" and the Sociocultural Moment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Meyer, W. Max

    2012-01-01

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

  5. Architecture and Assembly of the Bacillus subtilis Spore Coat

    PubMed Central

    Plomp, Marco; Carroll, Alicia Monroe; Setlow, Peter; Malkin, Alexander J.

    2014-01-01

    Bacillus spores are encased in a multilayer, proteinaceous self-assembled coat structure that assists in protecting the bacterial genome from stresses and consists of at least 70 proteins. The elucidation of Bacillus spore coat assembly, architecture, and function is critical to determining mechanisms of spore pathogenesis, environmental resistance, immune response, and physicochemical properties. Recently, genetic, biochemical and microscopy methods have provided new insight into spore coat architecture, assembly, structure and function. However, detailed spore coat architecture and assembly, comprehensive understanding of the proteomic composition of coat layers, and specific roles of coat proteins in coat assembly and their precise localization within the coat remain in question. In this study, atomic force microscopy was used to probe the coat structure of Bacillus subtilis wild type and cotA, cotB, safA, cotH, cotO, cotE, gerE, and cotE gerE spores. This approach provided high-resolution visualization of the various spore coat structures, new insight into the function of specific coat proteins, and enabled the development of a detailed model of spore coat architecture. This model is consistent with a recently reported four-layer coat assembly and further adds several coat layers not reported previously. The coat is organized starting from the outside into an outermost amorphous (crust) layer, a rodlet layer, a honeycomb layer, a fibrous layer, a layer of “nanodot” particles, a multilayer assembly, and finally the undercoat/basement layer. We propose that the assembly of the previously unreported fibrous layer, which we link to the darkly stained outer coat seen by electron microscopy, and the nanodot layer are cotH- and cotE- dependent and cotE-specific respectively. We further propose that the inner coat multilayer structure is crystalline with its apparent two-dimensional (2D) nuclei being the first example of a non-mineral 2D nucleation crystallization

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  7. Architecture and High-Resolution Structure of Bacillus thuringiensis and Bacillus cereus Spore Coat Surfaces

    SciTech Connect

    Plomp, M; Leighton, T; Wheeler, K; Malkin, A

    2005-02-18

    We have utilized atomic force microscopy (AFM) to visualize the native surface topology and ultrastructure of Bacillus thuringiensis and Bacillus cereus spores in water and in air. AFM was able to resolve the nanostructure of the exosporium and three distinctive classes of appendages. Removal of the exosporium exposed either a hexagonal honeycomb layer (B. thuringiensis) or a rodlet outer spore coat layer (B. cereus). Removal of the rodlet structure from B. cereus spores revealed an underlying honeycomb layer similar to that observed with B. thuringiensis spores. The periodicity of the rodlet structure on the outer spore coat of B. cereus was {approx}8 nm, and the length of the rodlets was limited to the cross-patched domain structure of this layer to {approx}200 nm. The lattice constant of the honeycomb structures was {approx}9 nm for both B. cereus and B. thuringiensis spores. Both honeycomb structures were composed of multiple, disoriented domains with distinct boundaries. Our results demonstrate that variations in storage and preparation procedures result in architectural changes in individual spore surfaces, which establish AFM as a useful tool for evaluation of preparation and processing ''fingerprints'' of bacterial spores. These results establish that high-resolution AFM has the capacity to reveal species-specific assembly and nanometer scale structure of spore surfaces. These species-specific spore surface structural variations are correlated with sequence divergences in a spore core structural protein SspE.

  8. Analysis of the Effects of a gerP Mutation on the Germination of Spores of Bacillus subtilis

    PubMed Central

    Butzin, Xuan Yi; Troiano, Anthony J.; Coleman, William H.; Griffiths, Keren K.; Doona, Christopher J.; Feeherry, Florence E.; Wang, Guiwen; Li, Yong-qing

    2012-01-01

    As previously reported, gerP Bacillus subtilis spores were defective in nutrient germination triggered via various germinant receptors (GRs), and the defect was eliminated by severe spore coat defects. The gerP spores' GR-dependent germination had a longer lag time between addition of germinants and initiation of rapid release of spores' dipicolinic acid (DPA), but times for release of >90% of DPA from individual spores were identical for wild-type and gerP spores. The gerP spores were also defective in GR-independent germination by DPA with its associated Ca2+ divalent cation (CaDPA) but germinated better than wild-type spores with the GR-independent germinant dodecylamine. The gerP spores exhibited no increased sensitivity to hypochlorite, suggesting that these spores have no significant coat defect. Overexpression of GRs in gerP spores did lead to faster germination via the overexpressed GR, but this was still slower than germination of comparable gerP+ spores. Unlike wild-type spores, for which maximal nutrient germinant concentrations were between 500 μM and 2 mM for l-alanine and ≤10 mM for l-valine, rates of gerP spore germination increased up to between 200 mM and 1 M l-alanine and 100 mM l-valine, and at 1 M l-alanine, the rates of germination of wild-type and gerP spores with or without all alanine racemases were almost identical. A high pressure of 150 MPa that triggers spore germination by activating GRs also triggered germination of wild-type and gerP spores identically. All these results support the suggestion that GerP proteins facilitate access of nutrient germinants to their cognate GRs in spores' inner membrane. PMID:22904285

  9. Spore-displayed streptavidin: A live diagnostic tool in biotechnology

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, June-Hyung; Lee, Chang-Soo; Kim, Byung-Gee . E-mail: byungkim@snu.ac.kr

    2005-05-27

    Streptavidin, which is one of the most widely used proteins in biotechnological application field and is active only in tetrameric form, was surface expressed on the surface of Bacillus subtilis spore. Spore coat protein of B. subtilis, CotG, was used as an anchoring motif to display streptavidin. FACS using anti-streptavidin antibody was used for the verification of surface localization of expressed CotG-streptavidin fusion protein. FACS and dot-blot were used for the verification of biological activity of displayed streptavidin with FITC-labeled biotin.

  10. Vacuum-induced Mutations In Bacillus Subtilis Spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munakata, N.; Maeda, M.; Hieda, K.

    During irradiation experiments with vacuum-UV radiation using synchrotron sources, we made unexpected observation that Bacillus subtilis spores of several recombination-deficient strains lost colony-forming ability by the exposure to high vacuum alone. Since this suggested the possible injury in spore DNA, we looked for mutation induction using the spores of strains HA101 (wild-type repair capability) and TKJ6312 (excision and spore repair deficient) that did not lose survivability. It was found that the frequency of nalidixic-acid resistant mutation increased several times in both of these strains by the exposure to high vacuum (10e-4 Pa after 24 hours). The analysis of sequence changes in gyrA gene showed that the majority of mutations carried a unique allele (gyrA12) of tandem double-base substitutions from CA to TT. The observation has been extended to rifampicin resistant mutations, the majority of that carried substitutions from CA to TT or AT in rpoB gene. On the other hand, when the spores of strains PS578 and PS2319 (obtained from P. Setlow) that are defective in a group of small acidic proteins (alpha/beta-type SASP) were similarly treated, none of the mutants analyzed carried such changes. This suggests that the unique mutations might be induced by the interaction of small acidic proteins with spore DNA under forced dehydration. The results indicate that extreme vacuum causes severe damage in spore DNA, and provide additional constraint to the long-term survival of bacterial spores in the space environment.

  11. Ultrastructure and properties of Paecilomyces lilacinus spores.

    PubMed

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

    2002-10-01

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

  12. Characterization of Clostridium difficile Spores Lacking Either SpoVAC or Dipicolinic Acid Synthetase

    PubMed Central

    Donnelly, M. Lauren; Fimlaid, Kelly A.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT The spore-forming obligate anaerobe Clostridium difficile is a leading cause of antibiotic-associated diarrhea around the world. In order for C. difficile to cause infection, its metabolically dormant spores must germinate in the gastrointestinal tract. During germination, spores degrade their protective cortex peptidoglycan layers, release dipicolinic acid (DPA), and hydrate their cores. In C. difficile, cortex hydrolysis is necessary for DPA release, whereas in Bacillus subtilis, DPA release is necessary for cortex hydrolysis. Given this difference, we tested whether DPA synthesis and/or release was required for C. difficile spore germination by constructing mutations in either spoVAC or dpaAB, which encode an ion channel predicted to transport DPA into the forespore and the enzyme complex predicted to synthesize DPA, respectively. C. difficile spoVAC and dpaAB mutant spores lacked DPA but could be stably purified and were more hydrated than wild-type spores; in contrast, B. subtilis spoVAC and dpaAB mutant spores were unstable. Although C. difficile spoVAC and dpaAB mutant spores exhibited wild-type germination responses, they were more readily killed by wet heat. Cortex hydrolysis was not affected by this treatment, indicating that wet heat inhibits a stage downstream of this event. Interestingly, C. difficile spoVAC mutant spores were significantly more sensitive to heat treatment than dpaAB mutant spores, indicating that SpoVAC plays additional roles in conferring heat resistance. Taken together, our results demonstrate that SpoVAC and DPA synthetase control C. difficile spore resistance and reveal differential requirements for these proteins among the Firmicutes. IMPORTANCE Clostridium difficile is a spore-forming obligate anaerobe that causes ∼500,000 infections per year in the United States. Although spore germination is essential for C. difficile to cause disease, the factors required for this process have been only partially characterized

  13. Hydrazine vapor inactivates Bacillus spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-05-01

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

  14. Gene activity during germination of spores of the fern, Onoclea sensibilis. Cell-free translation analysis of mRNA of spores and the effect of alpha-amanitin on spore germination

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Raghavan, V.

    1992-01-01

    Poly(A)-RNA fractions of dormant, dark-imbibed (non-germinating) and photoinduced (germinating) spores of Onoclea sensibilis were poor templates in the rabbit reticulocyte lysate protein synthesizing system, but the translational efficiency of poly(A)+RNA was considerably higher than that of unfractionated RNA. Poly(A)+RNA isolated from photoinduced spores had a consistently higher translational efficiency than poly(A)+RNA from dark-imbibed spores. Analysis of the translation products by one-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis showed no qualitative differences in the mRNA populations of dormant, dark-imbibed, and photoinduced spores. However, poly(A)+RNA from dark-imbibed spores appeared to encode in vitro fewer detectable polypeptides at a reduced intensity than photoinduced spores. A DNA clone encoding the large subunit of maize ribulose bisphosphate carboxylase hybridized at strong to moderate intensity to RNA isolated from dark-imbibed spores, indicating the absence of mRNA degradation. Although alpha-amanitin did not inhibit the germination of spores, the drug prevented the elongation of the rhizoid and protonemal initial with a concomitant effect on the synthesis of poly(A)+RNA. These results are consistent with the view that some form of translational control involving stored mRNA operates during dark-imbibition and photoinduced germination of spores.

  15. PERMEABILITY OF BACTERIAL SPORES I.

    PubMed Central

    Black, S. H.; Gerhardt, Philipp

    1961-01-01

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

  16. Microbial profile modification with spores

    SciTech Connect

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

    1996-08-01

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

  17. Spore and the sociocultural moment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyer, W. Max

    2012-12-01

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

  18. Spore Coat Architecture of Clostridium novyi-NT spores

    SciTech Connect

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

    2007-05-07

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

  19. NASA Facts: SporeSat

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Martinez, Andres; Cappuccio, Gelsomina; Tomko, David

    2013-01-01

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

  20. Isolation and characterization of acid-soluble collagen from the scales of marine fishes from Japan and Vietnam.

    PubMed

    Minh Thuy, Le Thi; Okazaki, Emiko; Osako, Kazufumi

    2014-04-15

    Acid-soluble collagen (ASC) was successfully extracted from the scales of lizard fish (Saurida spp.) and horse mackerel (Trachurus japonicus) from Japan and Vietnam and grey mullet (Mugil cephalis), flying fish (Cypselurus melanurus) and yellowback seabream (Dentex tumifrons) from Japan. ASC yields were about 0.43-1.5% (on a dry weight basis), depending on the species. The SDS-PAGE profile showed that the ASCs were type I collagens, and consisted of two different α chains, α1 and α2, as well as a β component. ASC of horse mackerel from Vietnam contained a higher imino acid level than that from Japan. ASC denaturation temperature (Td) ranged from 26 to 29 °C, depending on fish species and imino acid content (p<0.01). Maximal solubility of individual collagens was observed at pHs 1-3. Collagen solubility decreased sharply at NaCl concentrations >0.4M, regardless of fish type. PMID:24295705

  1. Production of Clostridium bifermentans Spores as Inoculum for Bioremediation of Nitroaromatic Contaminants

    PubMed Central

    Sembries, S.; Crawford, R. L.

    1997-01-01

    Spores of Clostridium bifermentans KMR-1 were produced for use as a microbial inoculum for bioremediation and were preserved in both liquid and dry forms. All spore formulations showed good viability and ability to biodegrade the target compound, 2,4,6-trinitrotoluene (TNT), after 4 months of storage. For low-cost bulk spore production, several medium compositions, based on soy peptone, corn steep liquor, and meat peptone, were tested and yielded 10(sup7) spores per ml. A medium pH above 7.0, a low glucose concentration, and a sufficient concentration of protein favored the sporulation of C. bifermentans KMR-1. PMID:16535620

  2. The Role of Bacterial Spores in Metal Cycling and Their Potential Application in Metal Contaminant Bioremediation.

    PubMed

    Butterfield, Cristina N; Lee, Sung-Woo; Tebo, Bradley M

    2016-04-01

    Bacteria are one of the premier biological forces that, in combination with chemical and physical forces, drive metal availability in the environment. Bacterial spores, when found in the environment, are often considered to be dormant and metabolically inactive, in a resting state waiting for favorable conditions for them to germinate. However, this is a highly oversimplified view of spores in the environment. The surface of bacterial spores represents a potential site for chemical reactions to occur. Additionally, proteins in the outer layers (spore coats or exosporium) may also have more specific catalytic activity. As a consequence, bacterial spores can play a role in geochemical processes and may indeed find uses in various biotechnological applications. The aim of this review is to introduce the role of bacteria and bacterial spores in biogeochemical cycles and their potential use as toxic metal bioremediation agents. PMID:27227313

  3. Spore populations among bulk tank raw milk and dairy powders are significantly different.

    PubMed

    Miller, Rachel A; Kent, David J; Watterson, Matthew J; Boor, Kathryn J; Martin, Nicole H; Wiedmann, Martin

    2015-12-01

    To accommodate stringent spore limits mandated for the export of dairy powders, a more thorough understanding of the spore species present will be necessary to develop prospective strategies to identify and reduce sources (i.e., raw materials or in-plant) of contamination. We characterized 1,523 spore isolates obtained from bulk tank raw milk (n=33 farms) and samples collected from 4 different dairy powder-processing plants producing acid whey, nonfat dry milk, sweet whey, or whey protein concentrate 80. The spores isolated comprised 12 genera, at least 44 species, and 216 rpoB allelic types. Bacillus and Geobacillus represented the most commonly isolated spore genera (approximately 68.9 and 12.1%, respectively, of all spore isolates). Whereas Bacillus licheniformis was isolated from samples collected from all plants and farms, Geobacillus spp. were isolated from samples from 3 out of 4 plants and just 1 out of 33 farms. We found significant differences between the spore population isolated from bulk tank raw milk and those isolated from dairy powder plant samples, except samples from the plant producing acid whey. A comparison of spore species isolated from raw materials and finished powders showed that although certain species, such as B. licheniformis, were found in both raw and finished product samples, other species, such as Geobacillus spp. and Anoxybacillus spp., were more frequently isolated from finished powders. Importantly, we found that 8 out of 12 genera were isolated from at least 2 different spore count methods, suggesting that some spore count methods may provide redundant information if used in parallel. Together, our results suggest that (1) Bacillus and Geobacillus are the predominant spore contaminants in a variety of dairy powders, implying that future research efforts targeted at elucidating approaches to reduce levels of spores in dairy powders should focus on controlling levels of spore isolates from these genera; and (2) the spore

  4. Effects of meteorological conditions on spore plumes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burch, M.; Levetin, E.

    2002-05-01

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

  5. Glycoprotein and protein markers for strain differentiation and growth environment or media attribution

    SciTech Connect

    Wunschel, David S.; Fox, Alvin; Wahl, Karen L.

    2012-01-01

    Recent experience with Bacillus spore characterization has demonstrated that protein markers can provide potentially vital identifying and bioforensic information. The masses of constitutively expressed proteins and their peptide fragments can be used to identify bacterial isolates. Protein marker mass variation information reflects the underlying amino acid sequence variation to provide complementary information to genetic sequence analysis. Protein markers (identified by mass or sequence) that are conserved or variable can be readily selected. In contrast, genetic primers, as used in PCR, target conserved genetic regions. Furthermore, protein markers are relatively stable compared to nucleic acids and may remain in samples for longer periods of time. This is important to consider when the source, age and condition of samples may vary in a forensic investigation. Examples of constitutively expressed proteins that have been extensively characterized include the exosporium BclA and BclB proteins and small acid soluble proteins (SASPs). Finally, gene expression (usually assessed at the mRNA level) can vary in response to different environmental conditions. As a result, the profile of protein markers of the organism also reflects the culture environment. Mass spectrometric tools can be used to access the same information on culture-related protein expression variation. However, unlike genetic methods, with proteomic methodology there is the potential to define exactly which medium was employed for organism growth. This potential could provide additional clues for forensic attribution

  6. Measuring Total and Germinable Spore Populations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2011-01-01

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

  7. Measuring Total and Germinable Spore Populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2011-10-01

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

  8. Plasmid-encoded genes influence exosporium assembly and morphology in Bacillus megaterium QM B1551 spores

    PubMed Central

    Manetsberger, Julia; Hall, Elizabeth A. H.; Christie, Graham

    2015-01-01

    Spores of Bacillus megaterium QM B1551 are encased in a morphologically distinctive exosporium. We demonstrate here that genes encoded on the indigenous pBM500 and pBM600 plasmids are required for exosporium assembly and or stability in spores of this strain. Bioinformatic analyses identified genes encoding orthologues of the B. cereus-family exosporium nap and basal layer proteins within the B. megaterium genome. Transcriptional analyses, supported by electron and fluorescent microscopy, indicate that the pole-localized nap, identified here for the first time in B. megaterium QM B1551 spores, is comprised of the BclA1 protein. The role of the BxpB protein, which forms the basal layer of the exosporium in B. cereus spores, is less clear since spores of a null mutant strain display an apparently normal morphology. Retention of the localized nap in bxpB null spores suggests that B. megaterium employs an alternative mechanism to that used by B. cereus spores in anchoring the nap to the spore surface. PMID:26316548

  9. Stem rust spores elicit rapid RPG1 phosphorylation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Stem rust threatens cereal production worldwide. Understanding the mechanism by which durable resistance genes, such as Rpg1, function is critical. We show that the RPG1 protein is phosphorylated within 5 min by exposure to spores from avirulent but not virulent races of stem rust. Transgenic mutant...

  10. Cellulases released during the germination of Dictyostelium discoideum spores.

    PubMed Central

    Jones, T H; de Renobales, M; Pon, N

    1979-01-01

    Dormant spores of Dictyostelium discoideum contained cellulase at a specific activity of 130 to 140 U/mg of protein; when heat activated, the spores germinated, progressively releasing the cellulase activity into the extracellular medium. The cellulase release was a selective process and resulted in recovery of the cellulase activity at a specific activity of 2,000 U/mg of protein; beta-glucosidase in the spores remained completely associated with the emerging amoebae. Release of the cellulase required heat activation of the spores and occurred during the swelling stage of germination; inhibition of the emergence stage with cycloheximide had no effect on the release of the cellulase. The cellulase activity released consisted of two enzymes whose molecular weights were 136,000 and 69,000. Studies of their pH optima, heat lability, and of their sensitivity to inhibition revealed no distinctive differences between these two proteins. Analysis on diethylaminoethyl-Sephadex columns showed that the higher-molecular-weight protein could be converted into the lower-molecular-weight component in vitro. PMID:33962

  11. Comparative effects of gamma rays and electron beams on spores of Bacillus pumilus

    SciTech Connect

    Hayashi, Toru; Todoriki, Setsuko ); Takizawa, Hironobu; Suzuki, Tetsuya; Takama, Kozo )

    1994-02-01

    The effects of [gamma] rays and electron beams on the germination, outgrowth and the synthesis of protein and RNA of Bacillus pumilus spores were investigated to clarify the difference in the effects of the two types of radiations on bacterial spores. Gamma irradiation facilitated the germination to a slightly larger degree than electron irradiation. The outgrowth, growth and the synthesis of protein and RNA were inhibited by [gamma] irradiation to a greater extent than electron irradiation, when the spores were irradiated at the same dose. However, the effects of the two types of radiations were the same when the spores were irradiated with electron beams at a dose 30% higher than [gamma] rays. The results indicate that the effects of electron beams on bacterial spores and those of [gamma] rays are qualitatively the same but quantitatively different. 23 refs., 5 figs.

  12. Fungal spores: hazardous to health?

    PubMed Central

    Sorenson, W G

    1999-01-01

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

  13. Spore Photoproduct Lyase: The Known, the Controversial, and the Unknown*

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Linlin; Li, Lei

    2015-01-01

    Spore photoproduct lyase (SPL) repairs 5-thyminyl-5,6-dihydrothymine, a thymine dimer that is also called the spore photoproduct (SP), in germinating endospores. SPL is a radical S-adenosylmethionine (SAM) enzyme, utilizing the 5′-deoxyadenosyl radical generated by SAM reductive cleavage reaction to revert SP to two thymine residues. Here we review the current progress in SPL mechanistic studies. Protein radicals are known to be involved in SPL catalysis; however, how these radicals are quenched to close the catalytic cycle is under debate. PMID:25477522

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  15. The ice nucleation ability of one of the most abundant types of fungal spores found in the atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iannone, R.; Chernoff, D. I.; Pringle, A.; Martin, S. T.; Bertram, A. K.

    2010-10-01

    Recent atmospheric measurements show that biological particles are important ice nuclei. Types of biological particles that may be good ice nuclei include bacteria, pollen and fungal spores. We studied the ice nucleation properties of water droplets containing fungal spores from the genus Cladosporium, one of the most abundant types of spores found in the atmosphere. For water droplets containing a Cladosporium spore surface area of ~217 μm2 (equivalent to ~5 spores with average diameters of 3.2 μm), 1% of the droplets froze by -28.5 °C and 10% froze by -30.1 °C. However, there was a strong dependence on freezing temperature with the spore surface area of Cladosporium within a given droplet. As such, freezing temperatures for droplets containing 1-5 spores are expected to be approximately -35.1±2.3 °C (1σ S.D.). Atmospheric ice nucleation on spores of Cladosporium sp., or other spores with similar surface properties, do not appear to explain recent atmospheric measurements showing that biological particles are important ice nuclei. The poor ice nucleation ability of Cladosporium sp. spores may be attributed to the surface which is coated with hydrophobins (a class of hydrophobic proteins that appear to be widespread in filamentous fungi). Given the ubiquity of hydrophobins on spore surfaces, the current study may be applicable to many fungal species of atmospheric importance.

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2015-01-14

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-12-01

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

  18. Comparisons of Cells, Refractile Bodies, and Spores of Bacillus popilliae1

    PubMed Central

    Mitruka, Brij M.; Costilow, Ralph N.; Black, S. H.; Pepper, R. E.

    1967-01-01

    Spores of Bacillus popilliae from infected larvae and refractile bodies produced in a Trypticase-barbiturate medium were similar but distinct from vegetative cells of this organism in protein, nucleic acid, and enzyme composition. The spores and refractile bodies were found to have catalase activity, some of which was heat-resistant. This enzyme was not found in the vegetative cells. The spores contained dipicolinic acid, but the refractile bodies did not. The latter were similar to cells in having considerably higher levels of phosphate extractable with cold trichloroacetic acid and of poly-β-hydroxybutyrate than had the spores. Electron microscopy demonstrated conclusively that the refractile bodies are distinctly different from either cells or spores of B. popilliae. The possibility that these bodies are formed as a result of an aborted sporulation process is discussed. Images PMID:6035269

  19. Isolating and Purifying Clostridium difficile Spores.

    PubMed

    Edwards, Adrianne N; McBride, Shonna M

    2016-01-01

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

  20. New detection targets for amyloid-reactive probes: spectroscopic recognition of bacterial spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, Guilford, II; Landsman, Pavel

    2005-05-01

    We report characteristic changes in fluorescence of amyloid-binding dyes Thioflavin T (TfT), pinacyanol (PIN) and related dyes, caused by their interaction with suspended Bacillus spore cultures (B. subtilis, B thuringiensis). The gain in TfT emission in the presence of spores allowed their immediate detection in aqueous suspensions, with a sensitivity limit of < 105 spores per ml. The spectroscopic signatures are consistent with a large number of binding sites for the two dyes on spore coats. The possible structural relationship of these dye binding loci with characteristic motifs (β-stacks) of amyloid deposits and other misfolded protein formations suggests new designs for probing biocontamination and also for clinical studies of non-microbial human pathogens (e.g., amyloid-related protein aggregates in prion-related transmissible encephalopathies or in Alzheimer's disease). Also reported is a special screening technique that was designed and used herein for calibration of new detection probes and assays for spore detection. It employed spectroscopic interactions between the candidate amyloid stains and poly(vinylpyrrolidone)-coated colloid silica (Percoll) nanoparticles that also display remarkable parallelism with the corresponding dye-amyloid and dye-spore reactivities. Percoll may thus find new applications as a convenient non-biological structural model mimicking the putative probe-targeted motifs in both classes of bioanalytes. These findings are important in the design of new probes and assays for important human pathogens (i.e. bacterial spores and amyloidogenic protein aggregates).

  1. A Serum Response Factor homolog is required for spore differentiation in Dictyostelium.

    PubMed

    Escalante, R; Sastre, L

    1998-10-01

    A homolog of the Serum Response Factor (SRF) has been isolated from Dictyostelium discoideum and its function studied by analyzing the consequences of its gene disruption. The MADS-box region of Dictyostelium SRF (DdSRF) is highly conserved with those of the human, Drosophila and yeast homologs. srfA is a developmentally regulated gene expressed in prespore and spore cells. This gene plays an essential role in sporulation as its disruption leads to abnormal spore morphology and loss of viability. The mutant spores were round and cellulose deposition seemed to be partially affected. Initial prestalk and prespore cell differentiation did not seem to be compromised in the mutant since the expression of several cell-type-specific markers were found to be unaffected. However, the mRNA level of the spore marker spiA was greatly reduced. Activation of the cAMP-dependent protein kinase (PKA) by 8-Br-cAMP was not able to fully bypass the morphological defects of srfA- mutant spores, although this treatment induced spiA mRNA expression. Our results suggest that DdSRF is required for full maturation of spores and participates in the regulation of the expression of the spore-coat marker spiA and probably other maturation genes necessary for proper spore cell differentiation. PMID:9729488

  2. Bacillus subtilis Spores as Vaccine Adjuvants: Further Insights into the Mechanisms of Action

    PubMed Central

    de Souza, Renata Damásio; Batista, Milene Tavares; Luiz, Wilson Barros; Cavalcante, Rafael Ciro Marques; Amorim, Jaime Henrique; Bizerra, Raíza Sales Pereira; Martins, Eduardo Gimenes; de Souza Ferreira, Luís Carlos

    2014-01-01

    Bacillus subtilis spores have received growing attention regarding potential biotechnological applications, including the use as probiotics and in vaccine formulations. B. subtilis spores have also been shown to behave as particulate vaccine adjuvants, promoting the increase of antibody responses after co-administration with antigens either admixed or adsorbed on the spore surface. In this study, we further evaluated the immune modulatory properties of B. subtilis spores using a recombinant HIV gag p24 protein as a model antigen. The adjuvant effects of B. subtilis spores were not affected by the genetic background of the mouse lineage and did not induce significant inflammatory or deleterious effects after parenteral administration. Our results demonstrated that co-administration, but not adsorption to the spore surface, enhanced the immunogenicity of that target antigen after subcutaneous administration to BALB/c and C57BL/6 mice. Spores promoted activation of antigen presenting cells as demonstrated by the upregulation of MHC and CD40 molecules and enhanced secretion of pro-inflammatory cytokines by murine dendritic cells. In addition, in vivo studies indicated a direct role of the innate immunity on the immunomodulatory properties of B. subtilis spores, as demonstrated by the lack of adjuvant effects on MyD88 and TLR2 knockout mouse strains. PMID:24475289

  3. Acid-Soluble Internal Capsules for Closed-Face Cassette Elemental Sampling and Analysis of Workplace Air

    PubMed Central

    Harper, Martin; Ashley, Kevin

    2013-01-01

    Airborne particles that are collected using closed-face filter cassettes (CFCs), which are used widely in the sampling of workplace aerosols, can deposit in places other than on the filter and thereby may not be included in the ensuing analysis. A technique for ensuring that internal non-filter deposits are included in the analysis is to collect airborne particles within an acid-soluble internal capsule that, following sampling, can be dissolved along with the filter for subsequent elemental analysis. An interlaboratory study (ILS) was carried out to evaluate the use of cellulosic CFC capsule inserts for their suitability in the determination of trace elements in airborne samples. The ILS was performed in accordance with an applicable ASTM International standard practice, ASTM E691, which describes statistical procedures for investigating interlaboratory precision. Performance evaluation materials consisted of prototype cellulose acetate capsules attached to mixed-cellulose ester filters. Batches of capsules were dosed with Pb-containing materials (standard aqueous solutions, and certified reference material soil and paint). Also, aerosol samples containing nine target analyte elements (As, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Pb, Mn, and Ni) were generated using a multiport sampler; various concentrations and sampling times were employed to yield samples fortified at desired loading levels. Triplicates of spiked capsules at three different loadings were conveyed to each volunteer laboratory; loading levels were unknown to the participants. The laboratories were asked to prepare the samples by acid dissolution and to analyze aliquots of extracted samples by atomic spectrometry in accordance with applicable ASTM International Standards. Participants were asked to report their results in units of μg of each target element per sample. For the elements investigated, interlaboratory precision and recovery estimates from the participating laboratories demonstrated the utility of the

  4. Ultraviolet-Resistant Bacterial Spores

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2007-01-01

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

  5. The ice nucleation ability of one of the most abundant types of fungal spores found in the atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iannone, R.; Chernoff, D. I.; Pringle, A.; Martin, S. T.; Bertram, A. K.

    2011-02-01

    Recent atmospheric measurements show that biological particles are a potentially important class of ice nuclei. Types of biological particles that may be good ice nuclei include bacteria, pollen and fungal spores. We studied the ice nucleation properties of water droplets containing fungal spores from the genus Cladosporium, one of the most abundant types of spores found in the atmosphere. For water droplets containing a Cladosporium spore surface area of ~217 μm2 (equivalent to ~5 spores with average diameters of 3.2 μm ), 1% of the droplets froze by -28.5 °C and 10% froze by -30.1 °C. However, there was a strong dependence on freezing temperature with the spore surface area of Cladosporium within a given droplet. Mean freezing temperatures for droplets containing 1-5 spores are expected to be approximately -35.1 ± 2.3 °C (1σ S. D.). Atmospheric ice nucleation on spores of Cladosporium sp., or other spores with similar surface properties, thus do not appear to explain recent atmospheric measurements showing that biological particles participate as atmospheric ice nuclei. The poor ice nucleation ability of Cladosporium sp. may be attributed to the surface which is coated with hydrophobins (a class of hydrophobic proteins that appear to be widespread in filamentous fungi). Given the ubiquity of hydrophobins on spore surfaces, the current study may be applicable to many fungal species of atmospheric importance.

  6. Reaerosolization of Fluidized Spores in Ventilation Systems▿

    PubMed Central

    Krauter, Paula; Biermann, Arthur

    2007-01-01

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

  7. The walk and jump of Equisetum spores.

    PubMed

    Marmottant, Philippe; Ponomarenko, Alexandre; Bienaimé, Diane

    2013-11-01

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

  8. Inorganic Phosphate and Sodium Ions Are Cogerminants for Spores of Clostridium perfringens Type A Food Poisoning-Related Isolates▿

    PubMed Central

    Paredes-Sabja, Daniel; Udompijitkul, Pathima; Sarker, Mahfuzur R.

    2009-01-01

    Clostridium perfringens type A isolates carrying a chromosomal copy of the enterotoxin (cpe) gene are involved in the majority of food poisoning (FP) outbreaks, while type A isolates carrying a plasmid-borne cpe gene are involved in C. perfringens-associated non-food-borne (NFB) gastrointestinal diseases. To cause diseases, C. perfringens spores must germinate and return to active growth. Previously, we showed that only spores of FP isolates were able to germinate with K+ ions. We now found that the spores of the majority of FP isolates, but none of the NFB isolates, germinated with the cogerminants Na+ and inorganic phosphate (NaPi) at a pH of ∼6.0. Spores of gerKA-KC and gerAA mutants germinated to a lesser extent and released less dipicolinic acid (DPA) than did wild-type spores with NaPi. Although gerKB spores germinated to a similar extent as wild-type spores with NaPi, their rate of germination was lower. Similarly, gerO and gerO gerQ mutant spores germinated slower and released less DPA than did wild-type spores with NaPi. In contrast, gerQ spores germinated to a slightly lesser extent than wild-type spores but released all of their DPA during NaPi germination. In sum, this study identified NaPi as a novel nutrient germinant for spores of most FP isolates and provided evidence that proteins encoded by the gerKA-KC operon, gerAA, and gerO are required for NaPi-induced spore germination. PMID:19666724

  9. Fatty Acid Profiles for Differentiating Growth Medium Formulations Used to Culture Bacillus cereus T-strain Spores.

    PubMed

    Ehrhardt, Christopher J; Murphy, Devonie L; Robertson, James M; Bannan, Jason D

    2015-07-01

    Microbial biomarkers that indicate aspects of an organism's growth conditions are important targets of forensic research. In this study, we examined fatty acid composition as a signature for the types of complex nutrients in the culturing medium. Bacillus cereus T-strain spores were grown in medium formulations supplemented with one of the following: peptone (meat protein), tryptone (casein protein), soy protein, and brain-heart infusion. Cellular biomass was profiled with fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) analysis. Results showed peptone cultures produced spores enriched in straight-chained lipids. Tryptone cultures produced spores enriched in branched-odd lipids when compared with peptone, soy, and brain-heart formulations. The observed FAME variation was used to construct a set of discriminant functions that could help identify the nutrients in a culturing recipe for an unknown spore sample. Blinded classification tests were most successful for spores grown on media containing peptone and tryptone, showing 88% and 100% correct identification, respectively. PMID:25854710

  10. Trypsinlike enzymes from dormant and germinated spores of Bacillus cereus T and their possible involvement in germination.

    PubMed Central

    Boschwitz, H; Halvorson, H O; Keynan, A; Milner, Y

    1985-01-01

    Trypsin-like enzymes were studied in dormant, activated, and germinated spores of Bacillus cereus T. Dormant spores contained two heat-labile enzyme activities. One was extractable with 2 M KCl and hydrolyzed azo-albumin. The second, a trypsinlike activity, was not extractable with 2 M KCl and hydrolyzed benzoyl-L-arginine-p-nitroanilide. Because of their heat instability, these two enzyme activities are probably not involved in the germination of heat-activated spores. Upon germination of heat-treated spores, a trypsinlike protease which was not detected in intact dormant spores was activated or exposed. This enzyme, when measured in intact germinated spores, hydrolyzed benzoyl-DL-arginine-p-nitroanilide but not azo-albumin and was inhibited in situ by sulfhydryl-blocking reagents such as p-chloromercuribenzoic acid and Hg2+. There was a correlation between the inhibition of germination and enzymatic activity by sulfhydryl-blocking reagents. The enzyme was also inhibited by leupeptin, tosyl-L-lysine chromoethyl ketone, and tosyl-L-arginine methyl ester. Good correlation existed between the inhibition of germination and enzymatic activity by these agents. Electron micrographs showed that in the presence of trypsin inhibitors, the spores did not lose their cortex. The protein extracts of the inhibited spores formed a somewhat different electrophoretic pattern in sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis than the protein extracts of dormant or germinated spores. Images PMID:3930468

  11. Sporulation Temperature Reveals a Requirement for CotE in the Assembly of both the Coat and Exosporium Layers of Bacillus cereus Spores

    PubMed Central

    Bressuire-Isoard, Christelle; Bornard, Isabelle; Henriques, Adriano O.; Carlin, Frédéric

    2015-01-01

    The Bacillus cereus spore surface layers consist of a coat surrounded by an exosporium. We investigated the interplay between the sporulation temperature and the CotE morphogenetic protein in the assembly of the surface layers of B. cereus ATCC 14579 spores and on the resulting spore properties. The cotE deletion affects the coat and exosporium composition of the spores formed both at the suboptimal temperature of 20°C and at the optimal growth temperature of 37°C. Transmission electron microscopy revealed that ΔcotE spores had a fragmented and detached exosporium when formed at 37°C. However, when produced at 20°C, ΔcotE spores showed defects in both coat and exosporium attachment and were susceptible to lysozyme and mutanolysin. Thus, CotE has a role in the assembly of both the coat and exosporium, which is more important during sporulation at 20°C. CotE was more represented in extracts from spores formed at 20°C than at 37°C, suggesting that increased synthesis of the protein is required to maintain proper assembly of spore surface layers at the former temperature. ΔcotE spores formed at either sporulation temperature were impaired in inosine-triggered germination and resistance to UV-C and H2O2 and were less hydrophobic than wild-type (WT) spores but had a higher resistance to wet heat. While underscoring the role of CotE in the assembly of B. cereus spore surface layers, our study also suggests a contribution of the protein to functional properties of additional spore structures. Moreover, it also suggests a complex relationship between the function of a spore morphogenetic protein and environmental factors such as the temperature during spore formation. PMID:26497467

  12. Sporulation Temperature Reveals a Requirement for CotE in the Assembly of both the Coat and Exosporium Layers of Bacillus cereus Spores.

    PubMed

    Bressuire-Isoard, Christelle; Bornard, Isabelle; Henriques, Adriano O; Carlin, Frédéric; Broussolle, Véronique

    2016-01-01

    The Bacillus cereus spore surface layers consist of a coat surrounded by an exosporium. We investigated the interplay between the sporulation temperature and the CotE morphogenetic protein in the assembly of the surface layers of B. cereus ATCC 14579 spores and on the resulting spore properties. The cotE deletion affects the coat and exosporium composition of the spores formed both at the suboptimal temperature of 20°C and at the optimal growth temperature of 37°C. Transmission electron microscopy revealed that ΔcotE spores had a fragmented and detached exosporium when formed at 37°C. However, when produced at 20°C, ΔcotE spores showed defects in both coat and exosporium attachment and were susceptible to lysozyme and mutanolysin. Thus, CotE has a role in the assembly of both the coat and exosporium, which is more important during sporulation at 20°C. CotE was more represented in extracts from spores formed at 20°C than at 37°C, suggesting that increased synthesis of the protein is required to maintain proper assembly of spore surface layers at the former temperature. ΔcotE spores formed at either sporulation temperature were impaired in inosine-triggered germination and resistance to UV-C and H2O2 and were less hydrophobic than wild-type (WT) spores but had a higher resistance to wet heat. While underscoring the role of CotE in the assembly of B. cereus spore surface layers, our study also suggests a contribution of the protein to functional properties of additional spore structures. Moreover, it also suggests a complex relationship between the function of a spore morphogenetic protein and environmental factors such as the temperature during spore formation. PMID:26497467

  13. Adsorption of β-galactosidase of Alicyclobacillus acidocaldarius on wild type and mutants spores of Bacillus subtilis

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The Bacillus subtilis spore has long been used as a surface display system with potential applications in a variety of fields ranging from mucosal vaccine delivery, bioremediation and biocatalyst development. More recently, a non-recombinant approach of spore display has been proposed and heterologous proteins adsorbed on the spore surface. We used the well-characterized β-galactosidase from the thermoacidophilic bacterium Alicyclobacillus acidocaldarius as a model to study enzyme adsorption, to analyze whether and how spore-adsorption affects the properties of the enzyme and to improve the efficiency of the process. Results We report that purified β-galactosidase molecules were adsorbed to purified spores of a wild type strain of B. subtilis retaining ca. 50% of their enzymatic activity. Optimal pH and temperature of the enzyme were not altered by the presence of the spore, that protected the adsorbed β-galactosidase from exposure to acidic pH conditions. A collection of mutant strains of B. subtilis lacking a single or several spore coat proteins was compared to the isogenic parental strain for the adsorption efficiency. Mutants with an altered outermost spore layer (crust) were able to adsorb 60-80% of the enzyme, while mutants with a severely altered or totally lacking outer coat adsorbed 100% of the β-galactosidase molecules present in the adsorption reaction. Conclusion Our results indicate that the spore surface structures, the crust and the outer coat layer, have an negative effect on the adhesion of the β-galactosidase. Electrostatic forces, previously suggested as main determinants of spore adsorption, do not seem to play an essential role in the spore-β-galactosidase interaction. The analysis of mutants with altered spore surface has shown that the process of spore adsorption can be improved and has suggested that such improvement has to be based on a better understanding of the spore surface structure. Although the molecular details of

  14. [Comparison of susceptibility of spores of Bacillus subtilis and Czech strains of Clostridium difficile to disinfectants].

    PubMed

    Votava, M; Slitrová, B

    2009-02-01

    An important factor in the prevention of nosocomial outbreaks caused by Clostridium difficile ribotype 027 is the disinfection of a patient environment by reliable sporicidal disinfectants. Sporicidal activity of particular agents is tested on spores of Bacillus subtilis. Questions are brought up if the disinfectant which works on B. subtilis spores will be equally effective on the spores of C. difficile. Therefore we have compared the effects of five disinfectants available on the Czech market on the spores of collection strains of both microbes and on the spores of ten C. difficile field strains isolated from feces of hospitalized patients. The effective substances were: disinfectant No. 1 chloramine B, No. 2 chlorine dioxide, No. 3 formaldehyde and ethan-2-dion, No. 4 peracetic and acetic acids and hydrogen peroxide, No. 5 ethanol and propan-2-ol. The testing was performed using the dilution neutralization method according to (SN EN 13704, the agent reducing the number of spores by more than 3 orders was considered sporicidal. In addition to the standard time 60 min a 15-minutes exposition was used and the effect was tested also under the protein burden. Disinfectant No. 1 showed better effect on the C. difficile than B. subtilis spores, even in lower (1%) concentration. Similarly, the sensitivity of the C. difficile spores to disinfectants No. 2 and 3 was somewhat higher. The sporicidity of the disinfectant No. 4 was so high that it reduced the number of spores of all strains within 15 minutes by more than 4 orders; possible difference in the susceptibility of spores was not observed. Whereas the disinfectant No. 5 was not reliably effective on the spores of B. subtilis, surprisingly it showed the sporicidal effect on the spores of field C. difficile strains. We conclude that spores of field C. difficile strains in particular turned out to be more sensitive to disinfectants than the spores of the collection strain ofB. subtilis. Therefore B. subtilis remains

  15. Use of microbial spores as a biocatalyst

    SciTech Connect

    Murata, Kousaku . Research Inst. for Food Science)

    1993-01-01

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

  16. On the fate of ingested Bacillus spores.

    PubMed

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

    2000-06-01

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

  17. Kinetics of Germination of Individual Spores of Geobacillus stearothermophilus as Measured by Raman Spectroscopy and Differential Interference Contrast Microscopy

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Tingting; Dong, Zhiyang; Setlow, Peter; Li, Yong-qing

    2013-01-01

    Geobacillus stearothermophilus is a gram-positive, thermophilic bacterium, spores of which are very heat resistant. Raman spectroscopy and differential interference contrast microscopy were used to monitor the kinetics of germination of individual spores of G. stearothermophilus at different temperatures, and major conclusions from this work were as follows. 1) The CaDPA level of individual G. stearothermophilus spores was similar to that of Bacillus spores. However, the Raman spectra of protein amide bands suggested there are differences in protein structure in spores of G. stearothermophilus and Bacillus species. 2) During nutrient germination of G. stearothermophilus spores, CaDPA was released beginning after a lag time (Tlag) between addition of nutrient germinants and initiation of CaDPA release. CaDPA release was complete at Trelease, and ΔTrelease (Trelease – Tlag) was 1–2 min. 3) Activation by heat or sodium nitrite was essential for efficient nutrient germination of G. stearothermophilus spores, primarily by decreasing Tlag values. 4) Values of Tlag and Trelease were heterogeneous among individual spores, but ΔTrelease values were relatively constant. 5) Temperature had major effects on nutrient germination of G. stearothermophilus spores, as at temperatures below 65°C, average Tlag values increased significantly. 6) G. stearothermophilus spore germination with exogenous CaDPA or dodecylamine was fastest at 65°C, with longer Tlag values at lower temperatures. 7) Decoating of G. stearothermophilus spores slowed nutrient germination slightly and CaDPA germination significantly, but increased dodecylamine germination markedly. These results indicate that the dynamics and heterogeneity of the germination of individual G. stearothermophilus spores are generally similar to that of Bacillus species. PMID:24058645

  18. Inducing and Quantifying Clostridium difficile Spore Formation.

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  19. Synthesis and Assembly of a Novel Glycan Layer in Myxococcus xanthus Spores*

    PubMed Central

    Holkenbrink, Carina; Hoiczyk, Egbert; Kahnt, Jörg; Higgs, Penelope I.

    2014-01-01

    Myxococcus xanthus is a Gram-negative deltaproteobacterium that has evolved the ability to differentiate into metabolically quiescent spores that are resistant to heat and desiccation. An essential feature of the differentiation processes is the assembly of a rigid, cell wall-like spore coat on the surface of the outer membrane. In this study, we characterize the spore coat composition and describe the machinery necessary for secretion of spore coat material and its subsequent assembly into a stress-bearing matrix. Chemical analyses of isolated spore coat material indicate that the spore coat consists primarily of short 1–4- and 1–3-linked GalNAc polymers that lack significant glycosidic branching and may be connected by glycine peptides. We show that 1–4-linked glucose (Glc) is likely a minor component of the spore coat with the majority of the Glc arising from contamination with extracellular polysaccharides, O-antigen, or storage compounds. Neither of these structures is required for the formation of resistant spores. Our analyses indicate the GalNAc/Glc polymer and glycine are exported by the ExoA-I system, a Wzy-like polysaccharide synthesis and export machinery. Arrangement of the capsular-like polysaccharides into a rigid spore coat requires the NfsA–H proteins, members of which reside in either the cytoplasmic membrane (NfsD, -E, and -G) or outer membrane (NfsA, -B, and -C). The Nfs proteins function together to modulate the chain length of the surface polysaccharides, which is apparently necessary for their assembly into a stress-bearing matrix. PMID:25271164

  20. Crystal Structure of the GerBC Component of a Bacillus Subtilis Spore Germinant Receptor

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Y.; Setlow, B; Setlow, P; Hao, B

    2010-01-01

    The nutrient germinant receptors (nGRs) of spores of Bacillus species are clusters of three proteins that play a critical role in triggering the germination of dormant spores in response to specific nutrient molecules. Here, we report the crystal structure of the C protein of the GerB germinant receptor, so-called GerBC, of Bacillus subtilis spores at 2.3 {angstrom} resolution. The GerBC protein adopts a previously uncharacterized type of protein fold consisting of three distinct domains, each of which is centered by a beta sheet surrounded by multiple alpha helices. Secondary-structure prediction and structure-based sequence alignment suggest that the GerBC structure represents the prototype for C subunits of nGRs from spores of all Bacillales and Clostridiales species and defines two highly conserved structural regions in this family of proteins. GerBC forms an interlocked dimer in the crystalline state but is predominantly monomeric in solution, pointing to the possibility that GerBC oligomerizes as a result of either high local protein concentrations or interaction with other nGR proteins in spores. Our findings provide the first structural view of the nGR subunits and a molecular framework for understanding the architecture, conservation, and function of nGRs.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Cote, Christopher K.; Welkos, Susan L.

    2015-01-01

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

  3. FATE OF BACILLUS SPHAERICUS 2362 SPORES IN NONTARGET INVERTEBRATES

    EPA Science Inventory

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

  4. Spore heat resistance and specific mineralization.

    PubMed Central

    Bender, G R; Marquis, R E

    1985-01-01

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

  5. Spore formation in plants: sporocyteless and more.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Li; Sundaresan, Venkatesan

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-07-01

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

  7. Plasma Assisted Decontamination of Bacterial Spores

    PubMed Central

    Kuo, Spencer P

    2008-01-01

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

  8. Bacterial spores as particulate carriers for gene gun delivery of plasmid DNA.

    PubMed

    Aps, Luana R M M; Tavares, Milene B; Rozenfeld, Julio H K; Lamy, M Teresa; Ferreira, Luís C S; Diniz, Mariana O

    2016-06-20

    Bacillus subtilis spores represent a suitable platform for the adsorption of proteins, enzymes and viral particles at physiological conditions. In the present work, we demonstrate that purified spores can also adsorb DNA on their surface after treatment with cationic molecules. In addition, we demonstrate that DNA-coated B. subtilis spores can be used as particulate carriers and act as an alternative to gold microparticles for the biolistic (gene gun) administration of plasmid DNA in mice. Gene gun delivery of spores pre-treated with DODAB (dioctadecyldimethylammonium bromide) allowed efficient plasmid DNA absorption and induced protein expression levels similar to those obtained with gold microparticles. More importantly, we demonstrated that a DNA vaccine adsorbed on spores can be loaded into biolistic cartridges and efficiently delivered into mice, which induced specific cellular and antibody responses. Altogether, these data indicate that B. subtilis spores represent a simple and low cost alternative for the in vivo delivery of DNA vaccines by the gene gun technology. PMID:27130499

  9. Spore germination mediated by Bacillus megaterium QM B1551 SleL and YpeB.

    PubMed

    Ūstok, Fatma Işik; Packman, Len C; Lowe, Christopher R; Christie, Graham

    2014-03-01

    Previous work demonstrated that Bacillus megaterium QM B1551 spores that are null for the sleB and cwlJ genes, which encode cortex-lytic enzymes (CLEs), either of which is required for efficient cortex hydrolysis in Bacillus spores, could germinate efficiently when complemented with a plasmid-borne copy of ypeB plus the nonlytic portion of sleB encoding the N-terminal domain of SleB (sleB(N)). The current study demonstrates that the defective germination phenotype of B. megaterium sleB cwlJ spores can partially be restored when they are complemented with plasmid-borne ypeB alone. However, efficient germination in this genetic background requires the presence of sleL, which in this species was suggested previously to encode a nonlytic epimerase. Recombinant B. megaterium SleL showed little, or no, activity against purified spore sacculi, cortical fragments, or decoated spore substrates. However, analysis of muropeptides generated by the combined activities of recombinant SleB and SleL against spore sacculi revealed that B. megaterium SleL is actually an N-acetylglucosaminidase, albeit with apparent reduced activity compared to that of the homologous Bacillus cereus protein. Additionally, decoated spores were induced to release a significant proportion of dipicolinic acid (DPA) from the spore core when incubated with recombinant SleL plus YpeB, although optimal DPA release required the presence of endogenous CLEs. The physiological basis that underpins this newly identified dependency between SleL and YpeB is not clear, since pulldown assays indicated that the proteins do not interact physically in vitro. PMID:24375103

  10. Spore Germination Mediated by Bacillus megaterium QM B1551 SleL and YpeB

    PubMed Central

    Üstok, Fatma Işık; Packman, Len C.; Lowe, Christopher R.

    2014-01-01

    Previous work demonstrated that Bacillus megaterium QM B1551 spores that are null for the sleB and cwlJ genes, which encode cortex-lytic enzymes (CLEs), either of which is required for efficient cortex hydrolysis in Bacillus spores, could germinate efficiently when complemented with a plasmid-borne copy of ypeB plus the nonlytic portion of sleB encoding the N-terminal domain of SleB (sleBN). The current study demonstrates that the defective germination phenotype of B. megaterium sleB cwlJ spores can partially be restored when they are complemented with plasmid-borne ypeB alone. However, efficient germination in this genetic background requires the presence of sleL, which in this species was suggested previously to encode a nonlytic epimerase. Recombinant B. megaterium SleL showed little, or no, activity against purified spore sacculi, cortical fragments, or decoated spore substrates. However, analysis of muropeptides generated by the combined activities of recombinant SleB and SleL against spore sacculi revealed that B. megaterium SleL is actually an N-acetylglucosaminidase, albeit with apparent reduced activity compared to that of the homologous Bacillus cereus protein. Additionally, decoated spores were induced to release a significant proportion of dipicolinic acid (DPA) from the spore core when incubated with recombinant SleL plus YpeB, although optimal DPA release required the presence of endogenous CLEs. The physiological basis that underpins this newly identified dependency between SleL and YpeB is not clear, since pulldown assays indicated that the proteins do not interact physically in vitro. PMID:24375103

  11. Micro-sonicator for spore lysis

    DOEpatents

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

    2000-01-01

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

  12. Quantification and Single-Spore Detection of Phakopsora pachyrhizi

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  13. Transfer of Bacillus cereus spores from packaging paper into food.

    PubMed

    Ekman, Jaakko; Tsitko, Irina; Weber, Assi; Nielsen-LeRoux, Christina; Lereclus, Didier; Salkinoja-Salonen, Mirja

    2009-11-01

    Food packaging papers are not sterile, as the manufacturing is an open process, and the raw materials contain bacteria. We modeled the potential transfer of the Bacillus cereus spores from packaging paper to food by using a green fluorescent protein-expressing construct of Bacillus thuringiensis Bt 407Cry(-) [pHT315Omega(papha3-gfp)], abbreviated BT-1. Paper (260 g m(-2)) containing BT-1 was manufactured with equipment that allowed fiber formation similar to that of full-scale manufactured paper. BT-1 adhered to pulp during papermaking and survived similar to an authentic B. cereus. Rice and chocolate were exposed to the BT-1-containing paper for 10 or 30 days at 40 or 20 degrees C at relative air humidity of 10 to 60%. The majority of the spores remained immobilized inside the fiber web; only 0.001 to 0.03% transferred to the foods. This amount is low compared with the process hygiene criteria and densities commonly found in food, and it does not endanger food safety. To measure this, we introduced BT-1 spores into the paper in densities of 100 to 1,000 times higher than the amounts of the B. cereus group bacteria found in commercial paper. Of BT-1 spores, 0.03 to 0.1% transferred from the paper to fresh agar surface within 5 min of contact, which is more than to food during 10 to 30 days of exposure. The findings indicate that transfer from paper to dry food is restricted to those microbes that are exposed on the paper surface and readily detectable with a contact agar method. PMID:19903384

  14. Genetic Requirements for Induction of Germination of Spores of Bacillus subtilis by Ca2+-Dipicolinate

    PubMed Central

    Paidhungat, Madan; Ragkousi, Katerina; Setlow, Peter

    2001-01-01

    Dormant Bacillus subtilis spores can be induced to germinate by nutrients, as well as by nonmetabolizable chemicals, such as a 1:1 chelate of Ca2+ and dipicolinic acid (DPA). Nutrients bind receptors in the spore, and this binding triggers events in the spore core, including DPA excretion and rehydration, and also activates hydrolysis of the surrounding cortex through mechanisms that are largely unknown. As Ca2+-DPA does not require receptors to induce spore germination, we asked if this process utilizes other proteins, such as the putative cortex-lytic enzymes SleB and CwlJ, that are involved in nutrient-induced germination. We found that Ca2+-DPA triggers germination by first activating CwlJ-dependent cortex hydrolysis; this mechanism is different from nutrient-induced germination where cortex hydrolysis is not required for the early germination events in the spore core. Nevertheless, since nutrients can induce release of the spore's DPA before cortex hydrolysis, we examined if the DPA excreted from the core acts as a signal to activate CwlJ in the cortex. Indeed, endogenous DPA is required for nutrient-induced CwlJ activation and this requirement was partially remedied by exogenous Ca2+-DPA. Our findings thus define a mechanism for Ca2+-DPA-induced germination and also provide the first definitive evidence for a signaling pathway that activates cortex hydrolysis in response to nutrients. PMID:11466292

  15. Interaction of Bacillus subtilis spores with sodium hypochlorite, sodium dichloroisocyanurate and chloramine-T.

    PubMed

    Bloomfield, S F; Arthur, M

    1992-02-01

    Solutions of chlorine-releasing agents (CRAs) show varying activity against Bacillus subtilis spores; sodium hypochlorite (NaOCl) shows higher activity than sodium dichloroisocyanurate (NaDCC) which is more active than chloramine-T. Investigations with coat- and cortex-extracted spores indicate that resistance to CRAs depends not only on the spore coat but also the cortex. Whereas extraction of alkali-soluble coat protein increased sensitivity to NaOCl and NaDCC, degradation of coat and cortex material was required to achieve significant activity with chloramine-T. NaOCl (in the presence and absence of NaOH) and NaDCC (in the presence of NaOH only) produced degradation of spore coat and cortex material which may be related to their rapid sporicidal action at low concentrations under these conditions. By contrast, chloramine-T produced no degradation of cortex peptidoglycan and was only effective against normal and alkali-treated spores at high concentrations, requiring extraction of peptidoglycan with urea/dithiothreitol/sodium lauryl sulphate (UDS) or UDS/lysozyme to achieve significant activity at low concentrations. Results suggest that the sporicidal action of CRAs is associated with spore coat and cortex degradation causing rehydration of the protoplast allowing diffusion to the site of action on the underlying protoplast. PMID:1556040

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-05-01

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

  17. The Role of Aquaporins in pH-Dependent Germination of Rhizopus delemar Spores.

    PubMed

    Turgeman, Tidhar; Shatil-Cohen, Arava; Moshelion, Menachem; Teper-Bamnolker, Paula; Skory, Christopher D; Lichter, Amnon; Eshel, Dani

    2016-01-01

    Rhizopus delemar and associated species attack a wide range of fruit and vegetables after harvest. Host nutrients and acidic pH are required for optimal germination of R. delemar, and we studied how this process is triggered. Glucose induced spore swelling in an acidic environment, expressed by an up to 3-fold increase in spore diameter, whereas spore diameter was smaller in a neutral environment. When suspended in an acidic environment, the spores started to float, indicating a change in their density. Treatment of the spores with HgCl2, an aquaporin blocker, prevented floating and inhibited spore swelling and germ-tube emergence, indicating the importance of water uptake at the early stages of germination. Two putative candidate aquaporin-encoding genes-RdAQP1 and RdAQP2-were identified in the R. delemar genome. Both presented the conserved NPA motif and six-transmembrane domain topology. Expressing RdAQP1 and RdAQP2 in Arabidopsis protoplasts increased the cells' osmotic water permeability coefficient (Pf) compared to controls, indicating their role as water channels. A decrease in R. delemar aquaporin activity with increasing external pH suggested pH regulation of these proteins. Substitution of two histidine (His) residues, positioned on two loops facing the outer side of the cell, with alanine eliminated the pH sensing resulting in similar Pf values under acidic and basic conditions. Since hydration is critical for spore switching from the resting to activate state, we suggest that pH regulation of the aquaporins can regulate the initial phase of R. delemar spore germination, followed by germ-tube elongation and host-tissue infection. PMID:26959825

  18. The Role of Aquaporins in pH-Dependent Germination of Rhizopus delemar Spores

    PubMed Central

    Turgeman, Tidhar; Shatil-Cohen, Arava; Moshelion, Menachem; Teper-Bamnolker, Paula; Skory, Christopher D.; Lichter, Amnon; Eshel, Dani

    2016-01-01

    Rhizopus delemar and associated species attack a wide range of fruit and vegetables after harvest. Host nutrients and acidic pH are required for optimal germination of R. delemar, and we studied how this process is triggered. Glucose induced spore swelling in an acidic environment, expressed by an up to 3-fold increase in spore diameter, whereas spore diameter was smaller in a neutral environment. When suspended in an acidic environment, the spores started to float, indicating a change in their density. Treatment of the spores with HgCl2, an aquaporin blocker, prevented floating and inhibited spore swelling and germ-tube emergence, indicating the importance of water uptake at the early stages of germination. Two putative candidate aquaporin-encoding genes—RdAQP1 and RdAQP2—were identified in the R. delemar genome. Both presented the conserved NPA motif and six-transmembrane domain topology. Expressing RdAQP1 and RdAQP2 in Arabidopsis protoplasts increased the cells' osmotic water permeability coefficient (Pf) compared to controls, indicating their role as water channels. A decrease in R. delemar aquaporin activity with increasing external pH suggested pH regulation of these proteins. Substitution of two histidine (His) residues, positioned on two loops facing the outer side of the cell, with alanine eliminated the pH sensing resulting in similar Pf values under acidic and basic conditions. Since hydration is critical for spore switching from the resting to activate state, we suggest that pH regulation of the aquaporins can regulate the initial phase of R. delemar spore germination, followed by germ-tube elongation and host-tissue infection. PMID:26959825

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-05-01

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

  20. Intact spore MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry and proteomic analysis of Puccinia pathogenic fungi.

    PubMed

    Beinhauer, Jana; Raus, Martin; Hanzalová, Alena; Horčička, Pavel; Šebela, Marek

    2016-09-01

    The aim of this work was to develop a method for the identification of pathogens causing rust diseases of crops using matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) of intact cells or spores (IC/IS). All optimizations were performed with Puccinia triticina, the causal agent of wheat leaf rust. Experiments included selection of washing solvents for spores, finding of an optimal concentration of spores in suspension and the most suitable matrix system as well as an evaluation of different sample preparation techniques. The best results were obtained when the spores were washed with acetonitrile/0.1% (v/v) trifluoroacetic acid, 7:3, v/v. A mixture of ferulic and sinapinic acids (5:15mgml(-1)) dissolved in acetonitrile/2.5% (v/v) trifluoroacetic acid, 7:3, v/v, was found optimal for the deposition of samples (50μg spores per μl) by two-layer volume technique. The optimized protocol was subsequently applied to other Puccinia species (Puccinia graminis, Puccinia striiformis and Puccinia coronata). Together with the use of the software BIOSPEAN, not only different species but also various pathotypes of the same species, which differ in their virulence, could be discriminated. There were 108 and 29 proteins identified from P. striiformis and P. graminis spores, respectively, after an acidic extraction in the matrix solvent mimicking the sample preparation for MALDI. Besides the presence of ribosomal proteins, histones, regulatory proteins and enzymes, also extracellular proteins participating in the pathogenesis were found. Finally, for both species, several proteins were assigned to signals in typical mass spectrometric profiles and suggested as diagnostic markers. PMID:27267623

  1. Transglutaminase-Mediated Cross-Linking of GerQ in the Coats of Bacillus subtilis Spores

    PubMed Central

    Ragkousi, Katerina; Setlow, Peter

    2004-01-01

    The spores of Bacillus subtilis show remarkable resistance to many environmental stresses, due in part to the presence of an outer proteinaceous structure known as the spore coat. GerQ is a spore coat protein essential for the presence of CwlJ, an enzyme involved in the hydrolysis of the cortex during spore germination, in the spore coat. Here we show that GerQ is cross-linked into higher-molecular-mass forms due in large part to a transglutaminase. GerQ is the only substrate for this transglutaminase identified to date. In addition, we show that cross-linking of GerQ into high-molecular-mass forms occurs only very late in sporulation, after mother cell lysis. These findings, as well as studies of GerQ cross-linking in mutant strains where spore coat assembly is perturbed, lead us to suggest that coat proteins must assemble first and that their cross-linking follows as a final step in the spore coat formation pathway. PMID:15317760

  2. Effects of mace (Myristica fragrans, Houtt.) on cytosolic glutathione S-transferase activity and acid soluble sulfhydryl level in mouse liver.

    PubMed

    Kumari, M V; Rao, A R

    1989-07-15

    The aril of plant Myristica fragrans Houtt. commonly known as mace, which is consumed as a spice as well as used as a folk-medicine, was screened for its effects on the levels of cytosolic glutathione S-transferase (GST) and acid-soluble sulfhydryl (SH) groups in the liver of young adult male and female Swiss albino mice. Animals were assorted into 4 groups comprised of either sex and received either normal diet (negative control), 1% 2,3-tert-butyl-4-hydroxyanisole (BHA) diet (positive control), 1% mace diet or 2% mace diet for 10 days. There was a significant increase in the GST activity in the liver of mice exposed to BHA or mace. In addition, there was a significant increase in the SH content in the liver of mice fed on 1% BHA and 2% mace diets. PMID:2752386

  3. Proteomic Profiling and Identification of Immunodominant Spore Antigens of Bacillus anthracis, Bacillus cereus, and Bacillus thuringiensis‡

    PubMed Central

    DelVecchio, Vito G.; Connolly, Joseph P.; Alefantis, Timothy G.; Walz, Alexander; Quan, Marian A.; Patra, Guy; Ashton, John M.; Whittington, Jessica T.; Chafin, Ryan D.; Liang, Xudong; Grewal, Paul; Khan, Akbar S.; Mujer, Cesar V.

    2006-01-01

    Differentially expressed and immunogenic spore proteins of the Bacillus cereus group of bacteria, which includes Bacillus anthracis, Bacillus cereus, and Bacillus thuringiensis, were identified. Comparative proteomic profiling of their spore proteins distinguished the three species from each other as well as the virulent from the avirulent strains. A total of 458 proteins encoded by 232 open reading frames were identified by matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time-of-flight mass spectrometry analysis for all the species. A number of highly expressed proteins, including elongation factor Tu (EF-Tu), elongation factor G, 60-kDa chaperonin, enolase, pyruvate dehydrogenase complex, and others exist as charge variants on two-dimensional gels. These charge variants have similar masses but different isoelectric points. The majority of identified proteins have cellular roles associated with energy production, carbohydrate transport and metabolism, amino acid transport and metabolism, posttranslational modifications, and translation. Novel vaccine candidate proteins were identified using B. anthracis polyclonal antisera from humans postinfected with cutaneous anthrax. Fifteen immunoreactive proteins were identified in B. anthracis spores, whereas 7, 14, and 7 immunoreactive proteins were identified for B. cereus and in the virulent and avirulent strains of B. thuringiensis spores, respectively. Some of the immunodominant antigens include charge variants of EF-Tu, glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase, dihydrolipoamide acetyltransferase, Δ-1-pyrroline-5-carboxylate dehydrogenase, and a dihydrolipoamide dehydrogenase. Alanine racemase and neutral protease were uniquely immunogenic to B. anthracis. Comparative analysis of the spore immunome will be of significance for further nucleic acid- and immuno-based detection systems as well as next-generation vaccine development. PMID:16957262

  4. Sensitive, Rapid Detection of Bacterial Spores

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2009-01-01

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

  5. Isolation and Characterization of a Galactosamine Wall from Spores and Spherules of Physarum polycephalum

    PubMed Central

    McCormick, J. Justin; Blomquist, Judith C.; Rusch, Harold P.

    1970-01-01

    The myxomycete, Physarum polycephalum, can be induced under laboratory conditions to form two different hard-walled forms, spores and spherules. Characterization of both types of walls revealed only a single sugar, galactosamine. It was identified after acid hydrolysis of the isolated walls by chromatography in three solvent systems, by its positive reaction with ammoniacal silver nitrate, ninhydrin, Galactostat, and the Elson-Morgan test, and by ninhydrin degradation to lyxose. Galactosamine was present as a polymer with solubility characteristics the same as the β1-4–linked glucosamine polymer (chitosan). The walls were also found to contain about 2% protein. Spherule walls revealed a single glycoprotein on gel electrophoresis. Spore walls contained a similar protein component. The phosphate content of isolated spherule walls was 9.8%, and that of spore walls was 1.4%. Spore walls also contained about 15% melanin which was shown to be similar to fungal melanin. A novel method was used to measure the rate of mature spherule formation based on the loss of extractability of P. polycephalum natural pigment. The presence of a rare galactosamine polymer in P. polycephalum spore and spherule walls as the only carbohydrate suggests that the myxomycetes are not closely related to the fungi or the protozoa. PMID:16559084

  6. Identification and Validation of Specific Markers of Bacillus anthracis Spores by Proteomics and Genomics Approaches*

    PubMed Central

    Chenau, Jérôme; Fenaille, François; Caro, Valérie; Haustant, Michel; Diancourt, Laure; Klee, Silke R.; Junot, Christophe; Ezan, Eric; Goossens, Pierre L.; Becher, François

    2014-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis is the causative bacteria of anthrax, an acute and often fatal disease in humans. The infectious agent, the spore, represents a real bioterrorism threat and its specific identification is crucial. However, because of the high genomic relatedness within the Bacillus cereus group, it is still a real challenge to identify B. anthracis spores confidently. Mass spectrometry-based tools represent a powerful approach to the efficient discovery and identification of such protein markers. Here we undertook comparative proteomics analyses of Bacillus anthracis, cereus and thuringiensis spores to identify proteoforms unique to B. anthracis. The marker discovery pipeline developed combined peptide- and protein-centric approaches using liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry experiments using a high resolution/high mass accuracy LTQ-Orbitrap instrument. By combining these data with those from complementary bioinformatics approaches, we were able to highlight a dozen novel proteins consistently observed across all the investigated B. anthracis spores while being absent in B. cereus/thuringiensis spores. To further demonstrate the relevance of these markers and their strict specificity to B. anthracis, the number of strains studied was extended to 55, by including closely related strains such as B. thuringiensis 9727, and above all the B. cereus biovar anthracis CI, CA strains that possess pXO1- and pXO2-like plasmids. Under these conditions, the combination of proteomics and genomics approaches confirms the pertinence of 11 markers. Genes encoding these 11 markers are located on the chromosome, which provides additional targets complementary to the commonly used plasmid-encoded markers. Last but not least, we also report the development of a targeted liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry method involving the selection reaction monitoring mode for the monitoring of the 4 most suitable protein markers. Within a proof

  7. Aerodynamics of puffball mushroom spore dispersal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amador, Guillermo; Barberie, Alex; Hu, David

    2012-11-01

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

  8. Method for collecting spores from a mold

    DOEpatents

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

    1977-01-01

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

  9. Virulence Plasmids of Spore-Forming Bacteria.

    PubMed

    Adams, Vicki; Li, Jihong; Wisniewski, Jessica A; Uzal, Francisco A; Moore, Robert J; McClane, Bruce A; Rood, Julian I

    2014-12-01

    Plasmid-encoded virulence factors are important in the pathogenesis of diseases caused by spore-forming bacteria. Unlike many other bacteria, the most common virulence factors encoded by plasmids in Clostridium and Bacillus species are protein toxins. Clostridium perfringens causes several histotoxic and enterotoxin diseases in both humans and animals and produces a broad range of toxins, including many pore-forming toxins such as C. perfringens enterotoxin, epsilon-toxin, beta-toxin, and NetB. Genetic studies have led to the determination of the role of these toxins in disease pathogenesis. The genes for these toxins are generally carried on large conjugative plasmids that have common core replication, maintenance, and conjugation regions. There is considerable functional information available about the unique tcp conjugation locus carried by these plasmids, but less is known about plasmid maintenance. The latter is intriguing because many C. perfringens isolates stably maintain up to four different, but closely related, toxin plasmids. Toxin genes may also be plasmid-encoded in the neurotoxic clostridia. The tetanus toxin gene is located on a plasmid in Clostridium tetani, but the botulinum toxin genes may be chromosomal, plasmid-determined, or located on bacteriophages in Clostridium botulinum. In Bacillus anthracis it is well established that virulence is plasmid determined, with anthrax toxin genes located on pXO1 and capsule genes on a separate plasmid, pXO2. Orthologs of these plasmids are also found in other members of the Bacillus cereus group such as B. cereus and Bacillus thuringiensis. In B. thuringiensis these plasmids may carry genes encoding one or more insecticidal toxins. PMID:26104459

  10. Carotenoids present in halotolerant Bacillus spore formers.

    PubMed

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

    2006-02-01

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

  11. Development of monoclonal antibodies against polar filaments and spore valves of Myxobolus honghuensis (Myxosporea: Bivalvulida).

    PubMed

    Jia, Luo; Li, Dan; Gu, Zemao; Yuan, Junfa; Zhai, Yanhua

    2016-01-13

    Myxobolus honghuensis infects the pharynx of allogynogenetic gibel carp Carassius auratus gibelio (Bloch) and can cause high mortality. Only morphology-based diagnostic methods are currently available for clinical samples, but these methods are laborious and have low efficiency of detection. To overcome this problem, we designed a more sensitive diagnostic method. Two monoclonal antibodies (MAbs 1C7 and 3B7) were prepared by immunizing mice with soluble protein from sonicated M. honghuensis spores. Immunofluorescence analysis revealed that MAb 1C7 specifically reacts with polar filaments from spores, whereas MAb 3B7 identified protein localized on the spore valves. The isotypes of MAb 1C7 and MAb 3B7 were IgM and IgG1, respectively. Results of Western blot analysis revealed that MAb 1C7 recognized 2 prominent protein bands with molecular weights of 130 and 180 kDa, while MAb 3B7 recognized a protein band of 28 kDa. Thus, in this study we have developed 2 MAbs that have the potential for efficient detection of M. honghuensis. Moreover, identification of MAb 1C7 and MAb 3B7 allows for further studies of the functions and biochemical composition of polar filament and spore surface antigens. PMID:26758653

  12. Bacterial spores and chemical sporicidal agents.

    PubMed Central

    Russell, A D

    1990-01-01

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

  13. Factors affecting spore germination in algae - review.

    PubMed

    Agrawal, S C

    2009-01-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2011-03-14

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Francis, Michael B.; Allen, Charlotte A.

    2015-01-01

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

  17. Spores of most common airborne fungi reveal no ice nucleation activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pummer, B. G.; Atanasova, L.; Bauer, H.; Bernardi, J.; Druzhinina, I. S.; Grothe, H.

    2013-06-01

    Fungal spores are ubiquitous biological aerosols, which are considered to show ice nucleation (IN) activity. In this study the respective IN activity was tested in oil emulsion in the immersion freezing mode. The focus was laid on species of economical, ecological or sanitary significance. For the first time, not only common moulds, but also edible mushrooms (Basidiomycota, Agaricomycetes) were investigated, as they contribute massively to the total amount of fungal spores in the atmosphere. Only Fusarium avenaceum showed freezing events at low subzero-temperatures, while the other investigated fungal spores showed no significant IN activity. Furthermore, we selected a set of fungal strains from different sites and exposed them to occasional freezing stress during cultivation. Although the total protein expression was altered by this treatment, it had no significant impact on the IN activity.

  18. Greenhouse germination and characterization of Synchytrium solstitiale resting spores

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Noblin, Xavier; Yang, Sylvia; Dumais, Jacques

    2010-11-01

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

  20. Recovery of Heat Treated Bacillus cereus Spores Is Affected by Matrix Composition and Factors with Putative Functions in Damage Repair

    PubMed Central

    Warda, Alicja K.; Tempelaars, Marcel H.; Abee, Tjakko; Nierop Groot, Masja N.

    2016-01-01

    The ability of spores to recover and grow out after food processing is affected by cellular factors and by the outgrowth conditions. In the current communication we studied the recovery and outgrowth of individually sorted spores in BHI and rice broth media and on agar plates using flow cytometry. We show that recovery of wet heat treated Bacillus cereus ATCC 14579 spores is affected by matrix composition with highest recovery in BHI broth or on rice agar plates, compared to BHI agar plates and rice broth. Data show that not only media composition but also its liquid or solid state affect the recovery of heat treated spores. To determine the impact of factors with putative roles in recovery of heat treated spores, specific genes previously shown to be highly expressed in outgrowing heat-treated spores were selected for mutant construction. Spores of nine B. cereus ATCC 14579 deletion mutants were obtained and their recovery from wet heat treatment was evaluated using BHI and rice broth and agar plates. Deletion mutant spores showed different capacity to recover from heat treatment compared to wild type with the most pronounced effect for a mutant lacking BC5242, a gene encoding a membrane protein with C2C2 zinc finger which resulted in over 95% reduction in recovery compared to the wild type in BHI broth. Notably, similar relative performance of wild type and mutants was observed using the other recovery conditions. We obtained insights on the impact of matrix composition and state on recovery of individually sorted heat treated spores and identified cellular factors with putative roles in this process. These results may provide leads for future developments in design of more efficient combined preservation treatments. PMID:27486443

  1. Recovery of Heat Treated Bacillus cereus Spores Is Affected by Matrix Composition and Factors with Putative Functions in Damage Repair.

    PubMed

    Warda, Alicja K; Tempelaars, Marcel H; Abee, Tjakko; Nierop Groot, Masja N

    2016-01-01

    The ability of spores to recover and grow out after food processing is affected by cellular factors and by the outgrowth conditions. In the current communication we studied the recovery and outgrowth of individually sorted spores in BHI and rice broth media and on agar plates using flow cytometry. We show that recovery of wet heat treated Bacillus cereus ATCC 14579 spores is affected by matrix composition with highest recovery in BHI broth or on rice agar plates, compared to BHI agar plates and rice broth. Data show that not only media composition but also its liquid or solid state affect the recovery of heat treated spores. To determine the impact of factors with putative roles in recovery of heat treated spores, specific genes previously shown to be highly expressed in outgrowing heat-treated spores were selected for mutant construction. Spores of nine B. cereus ATCC 14579 deletion mutants were obtained and their recovery from wet heat treatment was evaluated using BHI and rice broth and agar plates. Deletion mutant spores showed different capacity to recover from heat treatment compared to wild type with the most pronounced effect for a mutant lacking BC5242, a gene encoding a membrane protein with C2C2 zinc finger which resulted in over 95% reduction in recovery compared to the wild type in BHI broth. Notably, similar relative performance of wild type and mutants was observed using the other recovery conditions. We obtained insights on the impact of matrix composition and state on recovery of individually sorted heat treated spores and identified cellular factors with putative roles in this process. These results may provide leads for future developments in design of more efficient combined preservation treatments. PMID:27486443

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

    SciTech Connect

    Timberlake, W.E.

    1993-04-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2009-01-01

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

  4. Photocontrol of the Germination of Onoclea Spores

    PubMed Central

    Towill, Leslie R.; Ikuma, Hiroshi

    1973-01-01

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

  5. Airborne myxomycete spores: detection using molecular techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2009-01-01

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

  6. Real time viability detection of bacterial spores

    DOEpatents

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

    2003-07-29

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

  7. Mapping of Proteomic Composition on the Surfaces of Bacillus spores by Atomic Force Microscopy-based Immunolabeling

    SciTech Connect

    Plomp, M; Malkin, A J

    2008-06-02

    Atomic force microscopy provides a unique capability to image high-resolution architecture and structural dynamics of pathogens (e.g. viruses, bacteria and bacterial spores) at near molecular resolution in native conditions. Further development of atomic force microscopy in order to enable the correlation of pathogen protein surface structures with specific gene products is essential to understand the mechanisms of the pathogen life cycle. We have applied an AFM-based immunolabeling technique for the proteomic mapping of macromolecular structures through the visualization of the binding of antibodies, conjugated with nanogold particles, to specific epitopes on Bacillus spore surfaces. This information is generated while simultaneously acquiring the surface morphology of the pathogen. The immunospecificity of this labeling method was established through the utilization of specific polyclonal and monoclonal antibodies that target spore coat and exosporium epitopes of Bacillus atrophaeus and Bacillus anthracis spores.

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-03-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1997-04-01

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

  10. Classification of Streptomyces Spore Surfaces into Five Groups

    PubMed Central

    Dietz, Alma; Mathews, John

    1971-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Hintze, Paul E; Nicholson, Wayne L

    2010-06-01

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

  12. Kinetics of Germination of Wet-Heat-Treated Individual Spores of Bacillus Species, Monitored by Raman Spectroscopy and Differential Interference Contrast Microscopy ▿

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Guiwen; Zhang, Pengfei; Setlow, Peter; Li, Yong-qing

    2011-01-01

    Raman spectroscopy and differential interference contrast (DIC) microscopy were used to monitor the kinetics of nutrient and nonnutrient germination of multiple individual untreated and wet-heat-treated spores of Bacillus cereus and Bacillus megaterium, as well as of several isogenic Bacillus subtilis strains. Major conclusions from this work were as follows. (i) More than 90% of these spores were nonculturable but retained their 1:1 chelate of Ca2+ and dipicolinic acid (CaDPA) when incubated in water at 80 to 95°C for 5 to 30 min. (ii) Wet-heat treatment significantly increased the time, Tlag, at which spores began release of the great majority of their CaDPA during the germination of B. subtilis spores with different nutrient germinants and also increased the variability of Tlag values. (iii) The time period, ΔTrelease, between Tlag and the time, Trelease, at which a spore germinating with nutrients completed the release of the great majority of its CaDPA, was also increased in wet-heat-treated spores. (iv) Wet-heat-treated spores germinating with nutrients had higher values of Irelease, the intensity of a spore's DIC image at Trelease, than did untreated spores and had much longer time periods, ΔTlys, for the reduction in Irelease intensities to the basal value due to hydrolysis of the spore's peptidoglycan cortex, probably due at least in part to damage to the cortex-lytic enzyme CwlJ. (v) Increases in Tlag and ΔTrelease were also observed when wet-heat-treated B. subtilis spores were germinated with the nonnutrient dodecylamine, while the change in Irelease was less significant. (vi) The effects of wet-heat treatment on nutrient germination of B. cereus and B. megaterium spores were generally similar to those on B. subtilis spores. These results indicate that (i) some proteins important in spore germination are damaged by wet-heat treatment, (ii) the cortex-lytic enzyme CwlJ is one germination protein damaged by wet heat, and (iii) the CaDPA release

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

    PubMed

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

    2010-04-01

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

  14. Cadmium affects the mitochondrial viability and the acid soluble thiols concentration in liver, kidney, heart and gills of Ancistrus brevifilis (Eigenmann, 1920).

    PubMed

    Velasquez-Vottelerd, P; Anton, Y; Salazar-Lugo, R

    2015-01-01

    The freshwater fish Ancistrus brevifilis, which is found in Venezuelan rivers, is considered a potential sentinel fish in ecotoxicological studies. The cadmium (Cd) effect on the mitochondrial viability (MV) and acid soluble thiols levels (AST) in A. brevifilis tissues (liver, kidney, heart, and gill) was evaluated. Forty-two fish with similar sizes and weights were randomly selected, of which 7 fish (with their respective replicate) were exposed for 7 and 30 days to a Cd sublethal concentration (0.1 mg.l(-1)). We determined the MV through a Janus Green B colorimetric assay and we obtained the concentration of AST by Ellman's method. Mitochondrial viability decreased in fish exposed to Cd for 30 days with the liver being the most affected tissue. We also detected a significant decrease in AST levels was in fishes exposed to Cd for 7 days in liver and kidney tissues; these results suggests that AST levels are elevated in some tissues may act as cytoprotective and adaptive alternative mechanism related to the ROS detoxification, maintenance redox status and mitochondrial viability. Organ-specifics variations were observed in both assays. We conclude that the Cd exposure effect on AST levels and MV, vary across fish tissues and is related to the exposure duration, the molecule dynamics in different tissues, the organism and environmental conditions. PMID:26623384

  15. Cadmium affects the mitochondrial viability and the acid soluble thiols concentration in liver, kidney, heart and gills of Ancistrus brevifilis (Eigenmann, 1920)

    PubMed Central

    Velasquez-Vottelerd, P.; Anton, Y.; Salazar-Lugo, R.

    2015-01-01

    The freshwater fish Ancistrus brevifilis, which is found in Venezuelan rivers, is considered a potential sentinel fish in ecotoxicological studies. The cadmium (Cd) effect on the mitochondrial viability (MV) and acid soluble thiols levels (AST) in A. brevifilis tissues (liver, kidney, heart, and gill) was evaluated. Forty-two fish with similar sizes and weights were randomly selected, of which 7 fish (with their respective replicate) were exposed for 7 and 30 days to a Cd sublethal concentration (0.1 mg.l-1). We determined the MV through a Janus Green B colorimetric assay and we obtained the concentration of AST by Ellman’s method. Mitochondrial viability decreased in fish exposed to Cd for 30 days with the liver being the most affected tissue. We also detected a significant decrease in AST levels was in fishes exposed to Cd for 7 days in liver and kidney tissues; these results suggests that AST levels are elevated in some tissues may act as cytoprotective and adaptive alternative mechanism related to the ROS detoxification, maintenance redox status and mitochondrial viability. Organ-specifics variations were observed in both assays. We conclude that the Cd exposure effect on AST levels and MV, vary across fish tissues and is related to the exposure duration, the molecule dynamics in different tissues, the organism and environmental conditions. PMID:26623384

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ponce, Adrian (Inventor)

    2009-01-01

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

  17. A distance-weighted interaction map reveals a previously uncharacterized layer of the Bacillus subtilis spore coat.

    PubMed

    McKenney, Peter T; Driks, Adam; Eskandarian, Haig A; Grabowski, Paul; Guberman, Jonathan; Wang, Katherine H; Gitai, Zemer; Eichenberger, Patrick

    2010-05-25

    Bacillus subtilis spores are encased in a protein assembly called the spore coat that is made up of at least 70 different proteins. Conventional electron microscopy shows the coat to be organized into two distinct layers. Because the coat is about as wide as the theoretical limit of light microscopy, quantitatively measuring the localization of individual coat proteins within the coat is challenging. We used fusions of coat proteins to green fluorescent protein to map genetic dependencies for coat assembly and to define three independent subnetworks of coat proteins. To complement the genetic data, we measured coat protein localization at subpixel resolution and integrated these two data sets to produce a distance-weighted genetic interaction map. Using these data, we predict that the coat comprises at least four spatially distinct layers, including a previously uncharacterized glycoprotein outermost layer that we name the spore crust. We found that crust assembly depends on proteins we predicted to localize to the crust. The crust may be conserved in all Bacillus spores and may play critical functions in the environment. PMID:20451384

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1988-01-01

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

  19. Regulation of trehalose metabolism by Streptomyces griseus spores.

    PubMed Central

    McBride, M J; Ensign, J C

    1990-01-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Craven, S E; Blankenship, L C

    1985-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Williams, N D; Russell, A D

    1993-07-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-03-15

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

  5. In situ investigation of Geobacillus stearothermophilus spore germination and inactivation mechanisms under moderate high pressure.

    PubMed

    Georget, Erika; Kapoor, Shobhna; Winter, Roland; Reineke, Kai; Song, Youye; Callanan, Michael; Ananta, Edwin; Heinz, Volker; Mathys, Alexander

    2014-08-01

    Bacterial spores are a major concern for food safety due to their high resistance to conventional preservation hurdles. Innovative hurdles can trigger bacterial spore germination or inactivate them. In this work, Geobacillus stearothermophilus spore high pressure (HP) germination and inactivation mechanisms were investigated by in situ infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR) and fluorometry. G. stearothermophilus spores' inner membrane (IM) was stained with Laurdan fluorescent dye. Time-dependent FT-IR and fluorescence spectra were recorded in situ under pressure at different temperatures. The Laurdan spectrum is affected by the lipid packing and level of hydration, and provided information on the IM state through the Laurdan generalized polarization. Changes in the -CH2 and -CH3 asymmetric stretching bands, characteristic of lipids, and in the amide I' band region, characteristic of proteins' secondary structure elements, enabled evaluation of the impact of HP on endospores lipid and protein structures. These studies were complemented by ex situ analyses (plate counts and microscopy). The methods applied showed high potential to identify germination mechanisms, particularly associated to the IM. Germination up to 3 log10 was achieved at 200 MPa and 55 °C. A molecular-level understanding of these mechanisms is important for the development and validation of multi-hurdle approaches to achieve commercial sterility. PMID:24750808

  6. Enzymatic Manganese(II) Oxidation by Metabolically Dormant Spores of Diverse Bacillus Species

    PubMed Central

    Francis, Chris A.; Tebo, Bradley M.

    2002-01-01

    Bacterial spores are renowned for their longevity, ubiquity, and resistance to environmental insults, but virtually nothing is known regarding whether these metabolically dormant structures impact their surrounding chemical environments. In the present study, a number of spore-forming bacteria that produce dormant spores which enzymatically oxidize soluble Mn(II) to insoluble Mn(IV) oxides were isolated from coastal marine sediments. The highly charged and reactive surfaces of biogenic metal oxides dramatically influence the oxidation and sorption of both trace metals and organics in the environment. Prior to this study, the only known Mn(II)-oxidizing sporeformer was the marine Bacillus sp. strain SG-1, an extensively studied bacterium in which Mn(II) oxidation is believed to be catalyzed by a multicopper oxidase, MnxG. Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA and mnxG sequences obtained from 15 different Mn(II)-oxidizing sporeformers (including SG-1) revealed extensive diversity within the genus Bacillus, with organisms falling into several distinct clusters and lineages. In addition, active Mn(II)-oxidizing proteins of various sizes, as observed in sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide electrophoresis gels, were recovered from the outer layers of purified dormant spores of the isolates. These are the first active Mn(II)-oxidizing enzymes identified in spores or gram-positive bacteria. Although extremely resistant to denaturation, the activities of these enzymes were inhibited by azide and o-phenanthroline, consistent with the involvement of multicopper oxidases. Overall, these studies suggest that the commonly held view that bacterial spores are merely inactive structures in the environment should be revised. PMID:11823231

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

    PubMed Central

    de Groot, G. Arjen; During, Heinjo

    2013-01-01

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

  8. Involvement of Superoxide Dismutase in Spore Coat Assembly in Bacillus subtilis

    PubMed Central

    Henriques, Adriano O.; Melsen, Lawrence R.; Moran, Charles P.

    1998-01-01

    Endospores of Bacillus subtilis are enclosed in a proteinaceous coat which can be differentiated into a thick, striated outer layer and a thinner, lamellar inner layer. We found that the N-terminal sequence of a 25-kDa protein present in a preparation of spore coat proteins matched that of the Mn-dependent superoxide dismutase (SOD) encoded by the sodA locus. sodA is transcribed throughout the growth and sporulation of a wild-type strain and is responsible for the SOD activity detected in total cell extracts prepared from B. subtilis. Disruption of the sodA locus produced a mutant that lacked any detectable SOD activity during vegetative growth and sporulation. The sodA mutant was not impaired in the ability to form heat- or lysozyme-resistant spores. However, examination of the coat layers of sodA mutant spores revealed increased extractability of the tyrosine-rich outer coat protein CotG. We showed that this condition was not accompanied by augmented transcription of the cotG gene in sporulating cells of the sodA mutant. We conclude that SodA is required for the assembly of CotG into the insoluble matrix of the spore and suggest that CotG is covalently cross-linked into the insoluble matrix by an oxidative reaction dependent on SodA. Ultrastructural analysis revealed that the inner coat formed by a sodA mutant was incomplete. Moreover, the outer coat lacked the characteristic striated appearance of wild-type spores, a pattern that was accentuated in a cotG mutant. These observations suggest that the SodA-dependent formation of the insoluble matrix containing CotG is largely responsible for the striated appearance of this coat layer. PMID:9573176

  9. Microplate Assay for Colletotrichum Spore Production

    PubMed Central

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

    1987-01-01

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

  10. Chemical syntheses of oligodeoxyribonucleotides containing spore photoproduct

    PubMed Central

    Jian, Yajun; Li, Lei

    2013-01-01

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

  11. CLOSTRIDIUM SPORE ATTACHMENT TO HUMAN CELLS

    SciTech Connect

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

    1997-08-10

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

  12. Metal reduction by spores of Desulfotomaculum reducens.

    PubMed

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

    2009-12-01

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

  13. Methyl Iodide Fumigation of Bacillus anthracis Spores.

    PubMed

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

    2015-09-01

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

  14. The Composition and Attributes of Colletotrichum truncatum Spores Are Altered by the Nutritional Environment

    PubMed Central

    Jackson, Mark A.; Schisler, David A.

    1992-01-01

    Previous sporulation studies with Colletotrichum truncatum NRRL 13737, a fungal pathogen of the noxious weed Sesbania exaltata, showed that the carbon-to-nitrogen (CN) ratio of the conidiation medium influenced spore yield, morphology, and efficacy in inciting disease in S. exaltata. Spores produced in a medium with a CN ratio of 10:1 were more effective than were spores produced in a 30:1 or 80:1 ratio in causing disease in S. exaltata. With a basal salts medium supplemented with glucose and Casamino Acids, substrate utilization, spore production, biomass accumulation, and biomass and spore composition were compared in submerged cultures of C. truncatum grown in media with CN ratios of 80:1, 30:1, and 10:1. All cultures were sporulating by day 2, and spore concentrations in 5-day-old cultures were significantly different: 30:1 > 10:1 > 80:1. Amino acid and glucose utilization was balanced in cultures grown in media with a CN ratio of 10:1, whereas cultures grown in media with a CN ratio of 30:1 or 80:1 depleted amino acids prior to glucose. Conidia produced in media with a CN ratio of 10:1 contained significantly more protein (32% of dry weight) and less lipid (17% of dry weight) than conidia produced in media with a CN ratio of either 30:1 (15% protein, 33% lipid) or 80:1 (12% protein, 37% lipid). The higher lipid content of spores produced in media with a CN ratio of 30:1 or 80:1 was associated with the presence of increased numbers of lipid droplets. Optimization studies on conidia produced in media with CN ratios between 30:1 and 10:1 which compared yield, attributes, and efficacy in inciting disease in S. exaltata suggest that media with a CN ratio of 15:1 to 20:1 may be optimal for conidium production. Images PMID:16348737

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  17. Inactivation of Bacillus subtilis var. niger of both spore and vegetative forms by means of corona discharges applied in water.

    PubMed

    Joubert, Vanessa; Cheype, Cyril; Bonnet, Jean; Packan, Denis; Garnier, Jean-Pierre; Teissié, Justin; Blanckaert, Vincent

    2013-03-01

    Spores are dormant units of bacteria resistant to numerous disinfection methods. Additionally, the effects on bacteria of repetitive electrical discharges in water by used of the so-called "corona discharges" or streamer are poorly described. In this study vegetative and spore forms of Bacillus subtilis var. niger were subjected to these discharges. To generate corona discharges in water, a Marx generator capable of delivering 60-90 kV was used with a coaxial chamber of treatment. Vegetative and spore form reductions were defined using colony-forming unit counting. Proteins extracts were separated by two-dimensional electrophoresis and spots of interest were characterized by mass spectrometry. Shock waves were assessed by the diminution of liposome size and OD(400 nm). The results show a decrease in bacteria viability of 2 log(10) after 1000 discharges on the vegetative form and 4 log(10) after 10,000 discharges on the spores. Two-dimensional electrophoresis showed that the streamers impact the regulation of several proteins in the vegetative forms with UniProt ID: P80861, Q06797, P80244, C0ZI91, respectively. The reduction appears to be due, in part, to hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2)) generated by the corona discharges while spore deactivation remained insensitive to these chemicals. The spore eradication was associated to shock waves induced by the discharges but not H(2)O(2). Corona discharges appear as a prospective method for eradication of spores in water. The corona discharges can be an efficient method for decontamination processes of waste water. PMID:23286986

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

    PubMed

    Spicher, G; Peters, J; Borchers, U

    1999-02-01

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

  19. Effects of Phosphorelay Perturbations on Architecture, Sporulation, and Spore Resistance in Biofilms of Bacillus subtilis‡

    PubMed Central

    Veening, Jan-Willem; Kuipers, Oscar P.; Brul, Stanley; Hellingwerf, Klaas J.; Kort, Remco

    2006-01-01

    The spore-forming bacterium Bacillus subtilis is able to form highly organized multicellular communities called biofilms. This coordinated bacterial behavior is often lost in domesticated or laboratory strains as a result of planktonic growth in rich media for many generations. However, we show here that the laboratory strain B. subtilis 168 is still capable of forming spatially organized multicellular communities on minimal medium agar plates, exemplified by colonies with vein-like structures formed by elevated bundles of cells. In line with the current model for biofilm formation, we demonstrate that overproduction of the phosphorelay components KinA and Spo0A stimulates bundle formation, while overproduction of the transition state regulators AbrB and SinR leads to repression of formation of elevated bundles. Time-lapse fluorescence microscopy studies of B. subtilis green fluorescent protein reporter strains show that bundles are preferential sites for spore formation and that flat structures surrounding the bundles contain vegetative cells. The elevated bundle structures are formed prior to sporulation, in agreement with a genetic developmental program in which these processes are sequentially activated. Perturbations of the phosphorelay by disruption and overexpression of genes that lead to an increased tendency to sporulate result in the segregation of sporulation mutations and decreased heat resistance of spores in biofilms. These results stress the importance of a balanced control of the phosphorelay for biofilm and spore development. PMID:16585769

  20. Correction of axial chromatic aberrations in confocal Raman microspectroscopic measurements of a single microbial spore.

    PubMed

    Lasch, Peter; Hermelink, Antje; Naumann, Dieter

    2009-06-01

    Herein we describe a strategy for correcting the longitudinal or axial component of chromatic aberration in confocal Raman microspectroscopy. The method is based on measuring a vertical series of confocal Raman sections of samples by a high numerical aperture Raman microscope. Using the known characteristics of the wavelength-dependent focal shift of the optical system, the Raman intensities can be corrected to allow the rearrangement of Raman data from different focal planes. In the present study the computational correction routine was applied to an experimental data set of 4-dimensional (xyz spatial and the spectral dimension) confocal Raman spectra collected from single spores of Bacillus cereus. After correcting the axial component of the chromatic aberration, univariate and multivariate spectral parameters were obtained and used in the following for 3D segmentation and volume rendering on the basis of the structural and compositional information contained in the Raman spectra of the spore. Using univariate Raman intensities from defined functional group frequencies or k-means cluster membership values as a multivariate parameter for volume rendering, we demonstrate a high degree of correlation between confocal Raman microspectroscopy and the spores' morphology. In this paper we will also present cluster mean spectra which will be discussed in light of the presence of proteins and Ca-DPA, a calcium chelate of dipicolinic acid in the spore. PMID:19475143

  1. Spores of many common airborne fungi reveal no ice nucleation activity in oil immersion freezing experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pummer, B. G.; Atanasova, L.; Bauer, H.; Bernardi, J.; Druzhinina, I. S.; Fröhlich-Nowoisky, J.; Grothe, H.

    2013-12-01

    Fungal spores are ubiquitous biological aerosols, which are considered to act as ice nuclei. In this study the ice nucleation (IN) activity of spores harvested from 29 fungal strains belonging to 21 different species was tested in the immersion freezing mode by microscopic observation of water-in-oil emulsions. Spores of 8 of these strains were also investigated in a microdroplet freezing array instrument. The focus was laid on species of economical, ecological or sanitary significance. Besides common molds (Ascomycota), some representatives of the widespread group of mushrooms (Basidiomycota) were also investigated. Fusarium avenaceum was the only sample showing IN activity at relatively high temperatures (about 264 K), while the other investigated fungal spores showed no freezing above 248 K. Many of the samples indeed froze at homogeneous ice nucleation temperatures (about 237 K). In combination with other studies, this suggests that only a limited number of species may act as atmospheric ice nuclei. This would be analogous to what is already known for the bacterial ice nuclei. Apart from that, we selected a set of fungal strains from different sites and exposed them to occasional freezing stress during their cultivation. This was in order to test if the exposure to a cold environment encourages the expression of ice nuclei during growth as a way of adaptation. Although the total protein expression was altered by this treatment, it had no significant impact on the IN activity.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Aydogan, Ahmet; Gurol, Mirat D

    2006-02-01

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

  4. Quantitative and sensitive RNA based detection of Bacillus spores

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-03-01

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

  6. Spore-Forming Bacteria that Resist Sterilization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    LaDuc, Myron; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri

    2003-01-01

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

  7. MALDI-based intact spore mass spectrometry of downy and powdery mildews.

    PubMed

    Chalupová, Jana; Sedlářová, Michaela; Helmel, Michaela; Rehulka, Pavel; Marchetti-Deschmann, Martina; Allmaier, Günter; Sebela, Marek

    2012-08-01

    Fast and easy identification of fungal phytopathogens is of great importance in agriculture. In this context, matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) has emerged as a powerful tool for analyzing microorganisms. This study deals with a methodology for MALDI-TOF MS-based identification of downy and powdery mildews representing obligate biotrophic parasites of crop plants. Experimental approaches for the MS analyses were optimized using Bremia lactucae, cause of lettuce downy mildew, and Oidium neolycopersici, cause of tomato powdery mildew. This involved determining a suitable concentration of spores in the sample, selection of a proper MALDI matrix, looking for the optimal solvent composition, and evaluation of different sample preparation methods. Furthermore, using different MALDI target materials and surfaces (stainless steel vs polymer-based) and applying various conditions for sample exposure to the acidic MALDI matrix system were investigated. The dried droplet method involving solvent evaporation at room temperature was found to be the most suitable for the deposition of spores and MALDI matrix on the target and the subsequent crystallization. The concentration of spore suspension was optimal between 2 and 5 × 10(9) spores per ml. The best peptide/protein profiles (in terms of signal-to-noise ratio and number of peaks) were obtained by combining ferulic and sinapinic acids as a mixed MALDI matrix. A pretreatment of the spore cell wall with hydrolases was successfully introduced prior to MS measurements to obtain more pronounced signals. Finally, a novel procedure was developed for direct mass spectra acquisition from infected plant leaves. PMID:22899506

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-08-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-03-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-12-01

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

  11. Glycine Betaine Biosynthesized from Glycine Provides an Osmolyte for Cell Growth and Spore Germination during Osmotic Stress in Myxococcus xanthus▿

    PubMed Central

    Kimura, Yoshio; Kawasaki, Shinji; Yoshimoto, Hinae; Takegawa, Kaoru

    2010-01-01

    Glycine sarcosine methyltransferase (Gsm) and sarcosine dimethylglycine methyltransferase (Sdm) catalyze glycine betaine synthesis from glycine. Disruption of the M. xanthus gsmA (MXAN 7068) or sdmA (MXAN 3190) gene, encoding Gsm or Sdm homologue proteins, respectively, generated mutants that exhibited a longer lag period of growth and delayed spore germination under osmostress. PMID:20023011

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

    PubMed Central

    Ando, Yoshiaki

    1975-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  14. Enumerating Spore-Forming Bacteria Airborne with Particles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lin, Ying; Barengoltz, Jack

    2006-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Nakashio, S; Gerhardt, P

    1985-01-01

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

  17. The Role of the Electrostatic Force in Spore Adhesion

    SciTech Connect

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

    2010-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Thoen, E; Evensen, Ø; Skaar, I

    2016-06-01

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

  20. Rapid universal solublization and analysis of bacterial spores using a simple flow-through ultrahigh-temperature capillary device

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    West, Jay A.; Hukari, Kyle W.; Renzi, Ronald F.; Patel, Kamlesh

    2004-12-01

    Rapid identification of viral and bacterial species is dependent of the ability to manipulate biological agents into a form where they are directly analyzed. Many of these species of interest, such as bacterial spores, are inherently hearty and very difficult to lyse or solubilize. Standard protocols for spore inactivation include, chemical treatment, sonication, pressure and thermal lysis. While these protocols are effective for the inactivation of these agents they are less well suited for sample preparation for analysis using capillary electrophoresis techniques. In order to overcome this difficulty we fabricated a simple capillary device to perform thermal lysis of vegatative bacterial cells and bacterial spores. Using an ethylene glycol buffer to super heat bacterial spores we were able to perform rapid flow through lysis and solubilzation of these agents. This device was then coupled to a sample preparation station for on-line fluorescamine dye lableling and buffer exchange for direct analysis using a miniaturized capillary electrophoresis instrument. Using this integrated device were we enabled to perform sample lysis, labeling and protein fingerprint analysis of vegatative bacterial cells, bacterial spores and viruses in less than 10 minutes. The described device is simple, inexpensive and easily integratable with various microfluidic devices.

  1. Germination and Outgrowth of Single Spores of Saccharomyces cerevisiae Viewed by Scanning Electron and Phase-Contrast Microscopy

    PubMed Central

    Rousseau, Paul; Halvorson, Harlyn O.; Bulla, Lee A.; Julian, Grant St.

    1972-01-01

    Single spores of Saccharomyces cerevisiae were examined during germination and outgrowth by scanning electron and phase-contrast microscopy. Also determined were changes in cell weight and light absorbance, trehalose utilization, and synthesis of protein and KOH-soluble carbohydrates. These studies reveal that development of the vegetative cell from a spore follows a definite sequence of events involving dramatic physical and chemical modifications. These changes are: initial rapid loss in cellular absorbance followed later by an abrupt gain in absorbance; reduction in cell weight and a subsequent progressive increase; modification of the spore surface with concomitant diminution in refractility; elongation of the cell and augmentation of surface irregularities; rapid decline in trehalose content of the cell accompanied by extensive formation of KOH-soluble carbohydrates; and bud formation. Images PMID:4551750

  2. Surface sampling methods for Bacillus anthracis spore contamination.

    PubMed

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

    2002-10-01

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

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

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

    2006-01-01

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

  4. Bacillus atrophaeus Outer Spore Coat Assembly and Ultrastructure

    SciTech Connect

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

    2005-11-21

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

  5. Bioherbicidal activity from washed spores of Myrothecium verrucaria.

    PubMed

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

    2012-05-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  8. Evolutionary development of the plant and spore wall

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-12-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

    Raber, E; Burklund, A

    2010-02-16

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

  11. Rugged Single Domain Antibody Detection Elements for Bacillus anthracis Spores and Vegetative Cells

    PubMed Central

    Walper, Scott A.; Anderson, George P.; Brozozog Lee, P. Audrey; Glaven, Richard H.; Liu, Jinny L.; Bernstein, Rachel D.; Zabetakis, Dan; Johnson, Linwood; Czarnecki, Jill M.; Goldman, Ellen R.

    2012-01-01

    Significant efforts to develop both laboratory and field-based detection assays for an array of potential biological threats started well before the anthrax attacks of 2001 and have continued with renewed urgency following. While numerous assays and methods have been explored that are suitable for laboratory utilization, detection in the field is often complicated by requirements for functionality in austere environments, where limited cold-chain facilities exist. In an effort to overcome these assay limitations for Bacillus anthracis, one of the most recognizable threats, a series of single domain antibodies (sdAbs) were isolated from a phage display library prepared from immunized llamas. Characterization of target specificity, affinity, and thermal stability was conducted for six sdAb families isolated from rounds of selection against the bacterial spore. The protein target for all six sdAb families was determined to be the S-layer protein EA1, which is present in both vegetative cells and bacterial spores. All of the sdAbs examined exhibited a high degree of specificity for the target bacterium and its spore, with affinities in the nanomolar range, and the ability to refold into functional antigen-binding molecules following several rounds of thermal denaturation and refolding. This research demonstrates the capabilities of these sdAbs and their potential for integration into current and developing assays and biosensors. PMID:22412927

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  13. Methods for neutralizing anthrax or anthrax spores

    DOEpatents

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

    2013-02-26

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2009-01-01

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

  15. Peptide Synthesis by Extracts from Bacillus subtilis Spores

    PubMed Central

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

    1969-01-01

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

  16. Water Behavior in Bacterial Spores by Deuterium NMR Spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1970-01-01

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

  18. Infrared signatures to discriminate viability of autoclaved Bacillus spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2011-11-01

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

  19. Immunization of mice with formalin-inactivated spores from avirulent Bacillus cereus strains provides significant protection from challenge with Bacillus anthracis Ames.

    PubMed

    Vergis, James M; Cote, Christopher K; Bozue, Joel; Alem, Farhang; Ventura, Christy L; Welkos, Susan L; O'Brien, Alison D

    2013-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis spores are the infectious form of the organism for humans and animals. However, the approved human vaccine in the United States is derived from a vegetative culture filtrate of a toxigenic, nonencapsulated B. anthracis strain that primarily contains protective antigen (PA). Immunization of mice with purified spore proteins and formalin-inactivated spores (FIS) from a nonencapsulated, nontoxigenic B. anthracis strain confers protection against B. anthracis challenge when PA is also administered. To investigate the capacity of the spore particle to act as a vaccine without PA, we immunized mice subcutaneously with FIS from nontoxigenic, nonencapsulated B. cereus strain G9241 pBCXO1(-)/pBC210(-) (dcG9241), dcG9241 ΔbclA, or 569-UM20 or with exosporium isolated from dcG9241. FIS vaccination provided significant protection of mice from intraperitoneal or intranasal challenge with spores of the virulent B. anthracis Ames or Ames ΔbclA strain. Immunization with dcG9241 ΔbclA FIS, which are devoid of the immunodominant spore protein BclA, provided greater protection from challenge with either Ames strain than did immunization with FIS from BclA-producing strains. In addition, we used prechallenge immune antisera to probe a panel of recombinant B. anthracis Sterne spore proteins to identify novel immunogenic vaccine candidates. The antisera were variably reactive with BclA and with 10 other proteins, four of which were previously tested as vaccine candidates. Overall our data show that immunization with FIS from nontoxigenic, nonencapsulated B. cereus strains provides moderate to high levels of protection of mice from B. anthracis Ames challenge and that neither PA nor BclA is required for this protection. PMID:23114705

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1966-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Dragon, D C; Rennie, R P

    1995-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-11-01

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

  3. Immunomagnetic capture of Bacillus anthracis spores from food.

    PubMed

    Shields, Michael J; Hahn, Kristen R; Janzen, Timothy W; Goji, Noriko; Thomas, Matthew C; Kingombe, Cesar Bin I; Paquet, Chantal; Kell, Arnold J; Amoako, Kingsley K

    2012-07-01

    Food is a vulnerable target for potential bioterrorist attacks; therefore, a critical mitigation strategy is needed for the rapid concentration and detection of biothreat agents from food matrices. Magnetic beads offer a unique advantage in that they have a large surface area for efficient capture of bacteria. We have demonstrated the efficient capture and concentration of Bacillus anthracis (Sterne) spores using immunomagnetic beads for a potential food application. Magnetic beads from three different sources, with varying sizes and surface chemistries, were functionalized with monoclonal antibodies and polyclonal antibodies from commercial sources and used to capture and concentrate anthrax spores from spiked food matrices, including milk, apple juice, bagged salad, processed meat, and bottled water. The results indicated that the Pathatrix beads were more effective in the binding and capture of anthrax spores than the other two bead types investigated. Furthermore, it was observed that the use of polyclonal antibodies resulted in a more efficient recovery of anthrax spores than the use of monoclonal antibodies. Three different magnetic capture methods, inversion, the Pathatrix Auto system, and the new i CropTheBug system, were investigated. The i CropTheBug system yielded a much higher recovery of spores than the Pathatrix Auto system. Spore recoveries ranged from 80 to 100% for the i CropTheBug system when using pure spore preparations, whereas the Pathatrix Auto system had recoveries from 20 to 30%. Spore capture from food samples inoculated at a level of 1 CFU/ml resulted in 80 to 100% capture for milk, bottled water, and juice samples and 60 to 80% for processed meat and bagged salad when using the i CropTheBug system. This efficient capture of anthrax spores at very low concentrations without enrichment has the potential to enhance the sensitivity of downstream detection technologies and will be a useful method in a foodborne bioterrorism response. PMID

  4. Bacteriocins: Novel Solutions to Age Old Spore-Related Problems?

    PubMed

    Egan, Kevin; Field, Des; Rea, Mary C; Ross, R Paul; Hill, Colin; Cotter, Paul D

    2016-01-01

    Bacteriocins are ribosomally synthesized antimicrobial peptides produced by bacteria, which have the ability to kill or inhibit other bacteria. Many bacteriocins are produced by food grade lactic acid bacteria (LAB). Indeed, the prototypic bacteriocin, nisin, is produced by Lactococcus lactis, and is licensed in over 50 countries. With consumers becoming more concerned about the levels of chemical preservatives present in food, bacteriocins offer an alternative, more natural approach, while ensuring both food safety and product shelf life. Bacteriocins also show additive/synergistic effects when used in combination with other treatments, such as heating, high pressure, organic compounds, and as part of food packaging. These features are particularly attractive from the perspective of controlling sporeforming bacteria. Bacterial spores are common contaminants of food products, and their outgrowth may cause food spoilage or food-borne illness. They are of particular concern to the food industry due to their thermal and chemical resistance in their dormant state. However, when spores germinate they lose the majority of their resistance traits, making them susceptible to a variety of food processing treatments. Bacteriocins represent one potential treatment as they may inhibit spores in the post-germination/outgrowth phase of the spore cycle. Spore eradication and control in food is critical, as they are able to spoil and in certain cases compromise the safety of food by producing dangerous toxins. Thus, understanding the mechanisms by which bacteriocins exert their sporostatic/sporicidal activity against bacterial spores will ultimately facilitate their optimal use in food. This review will focus on the use of bacteriocins alone, or in combination with other innovative processing methods to control spores in food, the current knowledge and gaps therein with regard to bacteriocin-spore interactions and discuss future research approaches to enable spores to be more

  5. The SPS100 gene of Saccharomyces cerevisiae is activated late in the sporulation process and contributes to spore wall maturation.

    PubMed Central

    Law, D T; Segall, J

    1988-01-01

    We previously described the use of a differential hybridization screen of a genomic DNA library of Saccharomyces cerevisiae to identify sporulation-specific (SPS) genes (A. Percival-Smith and J. Segall, Mol. Cell. Biol. 4:142-150, 1984). This initial screen identified 14 SPS genes that are first expressed 6 to 8 h after transfer of cells to sporulation medium. Accumulation of transcripts corresponding to these genes becomes maximal at 8 to 12 h of sporulation, the time at which meiotic events are nearing completion, and by 15 h of sporulation, transcript levels are beginning to decrease. In the present study two additional SPS genes, first expressed at 12 h of sporulation, were isolated. The steady-state level of transcripts corresponding to these two genes, termed SPS100 and SPS101, remains unchanged from 15 to 35 h, a time coincident with spore wall maturation. The nature of the putative 34.2-kilodalton protein encoded by the SPS100 gene is consistent with its being a component of the glycoprotein matrix of the spore wall; the protein contains a potential signal sequence and cleavage site and numerous sites for potential glycosylation. A MATa sps100/MAT alpha sps100 strain was found to be indistinguishable from the wild-type strain when assessed for efficiency of ascus formation and spore viability. However, a more detailed analysis of the mutant strain revealed that the SPS100 gene product serves a protective role during the early stages of spore wall formation. The time at which resistance to ether could first be detected in developing spores was delayed by 5 h in the mutant strain relative to the wild-type strain. This phenotype is presumably a reflection of a defect in spore wall maturation. This study has confirmed that temporally distinct classes of sporulation-specific genes are sequentially activated during the process of meiosis and spore formation and has shown that the SPS100 gene, identified on the basis of its developmental-specific expression

  6. [Sporogenesis, sporoderm and mature spore ornamentation in Lycopodiaceae].

    PubMed

    Rincon Baron, Edgar Javier; Rolleri, Cristina Hilda; Passarelli, Lilian M; Espinosa Matías, Silvia; Torres, Alba Marina

    2014-09-01

    Studies on reproductive aspects, spore morphology and ultrastructure of Lycopodiaceae are not very common in the scientific literature, and constitute essential information to support taxonomic and systematic relationships among the group. In order to complete existing information, adding new and broader contributions on these topics, a comparative analysis of the sporogenesis ultrastructure, with emphasis on cytological aspects of the sporocyte coat development, tapetum, monoplastidic and polyplastidic meiosis, sporoderm ontogeny and ornamentation of the mature spores, was carried out in 43 taxa of eight genera of the Lycopodiaceae: Austrolycopodium, Diphasium, Diphasiastrum, Huperzia (including Phlegmariurus), Lycopodium, Lycopodiella, Palhinhaea and Pseudolycopodiella growing in the Andes of Colombia and the Neotropics. For this study, the transmission elec- tron microscopy (TEM) samples were collected in Cauca and Valle del Cauca Departments, while most of the spores for scanning electron microscopy (SEM) analysis were obtained from herbarium samples. We followed standard preparation procedures for spore observation by TEM and SEM. Results showed that the sporocyte coat is largely composed by primary wall components; the sporocyte develop much of their metabolic activity in the production of their coat, which is retained until the spores release; protective functions for the diploid cells undergoing meiosis is postulated here for this layer. The abundance of dictyosomes in the sporocyte cytoplasm was related to the formation and development of the sporocyte coat. Besides microtubule activity, the membrane of sporocyte folds, associated with electrodense material, and would early determine the final patterns of spore ornamentation. Monoplastidic condition is common in Lycopodium s.l., whereas polyplastidic condition was observed in species of Huperzia and Lycopodiella s. l. In monoplastidic species, the tapetum presents abun- dant multivesicular bodies, while in

  7. Micromotors to capture and destroy anthrax simulant spores.

    PubMed

    Orozco, Jahir; Pan, Guoqing; Sattayasamitsathit, Sirilak; Galarnyk, Michael; Wang, Joseph

    2015-03-01

    Towards addressing the need for detecting and eliminating biothreats, we describe a micromotor-based approach for screening, capturing, isolating and destroying anthrax simulant spores in a simple and rapid manner with minimal sample processing. The B. globilli antibody-functionalized micromotors can recognize, capture and transport B. globigii spores in environmental matrices, while showing non-interactions with excess of non-target bacteria. Efficient destruction of the anthrax simulant spores is demonstrated via the micromotor-induced mixing of a mild oxidizing solution. The new micromotor-based approach paves a way to dynamic multifunctional systems that rapidly recognize, isolate, capture and destroy biological threats. PMID:25622851

  8. New pressure and temperature effects on bacterial spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mathys, A.; Heinz, V.; Knorr, D.

    2008-07-01

    The mechanism of inactivation of bacterial spores by heat and pressure is still a matter of discussion. Obviously, the change of the dissociation equilibrium under pressure and temperature plays a dominant role in inactivation of microorganisms. Heat and pressure inactivation of Geobacillus. stearothermophilus spores at different initial pH-values in ACES and phosphate buffer confirmed this view. Thermal inactivation in ACES buffer at 122°C resulted in higher logarithmic reductions. Contrary, after pressure treatment at 900 MPa with 80°C phosphate buffer showed higher inactivation. These results indicated the different dissociation equilibrium shifts in buffer systems by heat and pressure. Due to preparation, storage and handling of highly concentrated spore suspensions the clumping and the formation of aggregates can hardly be avoided. Consequently, the impact of the agglomeration size distribution on the quantitative assessment of G. stearothermophilus spore inactivation was determined by using a three-fold dynamic optical backreflexion measurement. Two limiting cases have been discriminated in mathematical modelling: three dimensional, spherical packing for maximum spore count and two dimensional, circular packing for minimum spore count of a particular agglomerate. Thermal inactivation studies have been carried out in thin glass capillaries, where by using numerical simulations the non isothermal conditions were modelled and taken into account. It is shown that the shoulder formation often found in thermal spore inactivation can sufficiently be described by first-order inactivation kinetics when the agglomeration size is considered. In case of high pressure inactivation agglomerations could be strongly changed by high forces at compression and especially decompression phase. The physiological response of Bacillus licheniformis spores to high pressure was investigated using multiparameter flow cytometry. Spores were treated by high pressure at 150 MPa with 37

  9. Bacillus anthracis lcp Genes Support Vegetative Growth, Envelope Assembly, and Spore Formation

    PubMed Central

    Liszewski Zilla, Megan; Lunderberg, J. Mark; Schneewind, Olaf

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Bacillus anthracis, a spore-forming pathogen, replicates as chains of vegetative cells by regulating the separation of septal peptidoglycan. Surface (S)-layer proteins and B. anthracis S-layer-associated proteins (BSLs) function as chain length determinants and are assembled in the envelope by binding to the secondary cell wall polysaccharide (SCWP). B. anthracis expresses six different genes encoding LytR-CpsA-Psr (LCP) enzymes (lcpB1 to -4, lcpC, and lcpD), which when expressed in Staphylococcus aureus promote attachment of wall teichoic acid to peptidoglycan. Mutations in B. anthracis lcpB3 and lcpD cause aberrations in cell size and chain length that can be explained as discrete defects in SCWP assembly; however, the function of the other lcp genes is not known. By deleting combinations of lcp genes from the B. anthracis genome, we generated variants with single lcp genes. B. anthracis expressing lcpB3 alone displayed physiological cell size, vegetative growth, spore formation, and S-layer assembly. Strains expressing lcpB1 or lcpB4 displayed defects in cell size and shape, S-layer assembly, and spore formation yet sustained vegetative growth. In contrast, the lcpB2 strain was unable to grow unless the gene was expressed from a multicopy plasmid (lcpB2++), and variants expressing lcpC or lcpD displayed severe defects in growth and cell shape. The lcpB2++, lcpC, or lcpD strains supported neither S-layer assembly nor spore formation. We propose a model whereby LCP enzymes fulfill partially overlapping functions in transferring SCWP molecules to discrete sites within the bacterial envelope. IMPORTANCE Products of genes essential for bacterial envelope assembly represent targets for antibiotic development. The LytR-CpsA-Psr (LCP) enzymes tether bactoprenol-linked intermediates of secondary cell wall polymers to the C6 hydroxyl of N-acetylmuramic acid in peptidoglycan; however, the role of LCPs as a target for antibiotic therapy is not defined. We show here

  10. Investigating synergism during sequential inactivation of Bacillus subtilis spores with several disinfectants.

    PubMed

    Cho, Min; Kim, Jae-Hong; Yoon, Jeyong

    2006-08-01

    The sequential application of ozone, chlorine dioxide, or UV followed by free chlorine was performed to investigate the synergistic inactivation of Bacillus subtilis spores. The greatest synergism was observed when chlorine dioxide was used as a primary disinfectant followed by secondary disinfection with free chlorine. A lesser synergistic effect was observed when ozone was used as the primary disinfectant, but no synergism was observed when UV was used as the primary disinfectant. When free chlorine was used as the primary disinfectant (i.e., sequential application in the reverse order), the synergistic effect was shown only when chlorine dioxide was applied as the secondary disinfectant. The synergistic effect observed could be related to damage to the spore coat during primary disinfection, suggested by the loss of proteins from spores during disinfectant treatment. The greatest synergism observed by the chlorine dioxide/free chlorine pair suggested that common reaction sites might exist for these disinfectants. The concept of percent synergistic effect was introduced to quantitatively compare the extent of synergistic effects in the sequential disinfection processes. PMID:16884760

  11. Effects of temperature and desiccation on ex situ conservation of nongreen fern spores

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Conservation of the genetic diversity of ferns is limited by the paucity of ex situ spore banks. Conflicting reports of fern spore response to low temperature and moisture impedes establishment of fern spore banks. There is little information available to evaluate longevity of fern spores under dif...

  12. In-depth proteomic analysis of a mollusc shell: acid-soluble and acid-insoluble matrix of the limpet Lottia gigantea

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Invertebrate biominerals are characterized by their extraordinary functionality and physical properties, such as strength, stiffness and toughness that by far exceed those of the pure mineral component of such composites. This is attributed to the organic matrix, secreted by specialized cells, which pervades and envelops the mineral crystals. Despite the obvious importance of the protein fraction of the organic matrix, only few in-depth proteomic studies have been performed due to the lack of comprehensive protein sequence databases. The recent public release of the gastropod Lottia gigantea genome sequence and the associated protein sequence database provides for the first time the opportunity to do a state-of-the-art proteomic in-depth analysis of the organic matrix of a mollusc shell. Results Using three different sodium hypochlorite washing protocols before shell demineralization, a total of 569 proteins were identified in Lottia gigantea shell matrix. Of these, 311 were assembled in a consensus proteome comprising identifications contained in all proteomes irrespective of shell cleaning procedure. Some of these proteins were similar in amino acid sequence, amino acid composition, or domain structure to proteins identified previously in different bivalve or gastropod shells, such as BMSP, dermatopontin, nacrein, perlustrin, perlucin, or Pif. In addition there were dozens of previously uncharacterized proteins, many containing repeated short linear motifs or homorepeats. Such proteins may play a role in shell matrix construction or control of mineralization processes. Conclusions The organic matrix of Lottia gigantea shells is a complex mixture of proteins comprising possible homologs of some previously characterized mollusc shell proteins, but also many novel proteins with a possible function in biomineralization as framework building blocks or as regulatory components. We hope that this data set, the most comprehensive available at present, will

  13. Identifying bacterial spores and anthrax hoax materials by Raman spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farquharson, Stuart; Brouillette, Carl R.; Smith, Wayne

    2004-12-01

    The distribution of Bacillus anthracis spores through the US postal system in the autumn of 2001, initiated a secondary form of terror, the mailing of hoax materials. In the past three years nearly 20,000 letters containing harmless powders have been mailed, creating additional anxiety. Thus, there is a need for analyzers that can not only identify anthrax-causing spores to save lives, but also identify hoax materials to eliminate time-consuming and costly shutdowns. Recently, we established that Raman spectroscopy has the ability to identify both Bacilli endospores and hoax materials. Here we present Raman spectra of several Bacilli spores along with the dipicolinate salts, to further define the abilities of this technology to not only identify hoax materials, but also identify spores at the genus and species level.

  14. PHOSPHOLIPIDS IN VEGETATIVE CELLS AND SPORES OF BACILLUS POLYMYXA1

    PubMed Central

    Matches, Jack R.; Walker, Homer W.; Ayres, John C.

    1964-01-01

    Matches, Jack R. (Iowa State University of Science and Technology, Ames), Homer W. Walker, and John C. Ayres. Phospholipids in vegetative cells and spores of Bacillus polymyxa. J. Bacteriol. 87:16–23. 1964.—The same types of phospholipids were recovered from both vegetative cells and spores of Bacillus polymyxa 1A39. Nitrogen-containing phospholipids were identified as phosphatidyl ethanolamine, lysophosphatidyl ethanolamine, lysophosphatidyl serine, and lysolecithin. Acidic phosphatides containing no nitrogen were identified as phosphatidic acid, phosphatidyl glycerol, and a fraction appearing to be bis (phosphatidic) acid. The major phosphatide fraction in both cells and spores was phosphatidyl ethanolamine. Smaller amounts of phosphatidyl glycerol and bis (phosphatidic) acid were present; the other acidic phospholipid components were present only in trace amounts. Heat resistance of the spore as compared to the vegetative cell could not be attributed to a specific phospholipid, since no difference in the type of phospholipids present was observed. PMID:14102851

  15. Surface Bacterial-Spore Assay Using Tb3+/DPA Luminescence

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ponce, Adrian

    2007-01-01

    Equipment and a method for rapidly assaying solid surfaces for contamination by bacterial spores are undergoing development. The method would yield a total (nonviable plus viable) spore count of a surface within minutes and a viable-spore count in about one hour. In this method, spores would be collected from a surface by use of a transparent polymeric tape coated on one side with a polymeric adhesive that would be permeated with one or more reagent(s) for detection of spores by use of visible luminescence. The sticky side of the tape would be pressed against a surface to be assayed, then the tape with captured spores would be placed in a reader that illuminates the sample with ultraviolet light and counts the green luminescence spots under a microscope to quantify the number of bacterial spores per unit area. The visible luminescence spots seen through the microscope would be counted to determine the concentration of spores on the surface. This method is based on the chemical and physical principles of methods described in several prior NASA Tech Briefs articles, including Live/Dead Spore Assay Using DPA-Triggered Tb Luminescence (NPO-30444), Vol. 27, No. 3 (March 2003), page 7a. To recapitulate: The basic idea is to exploit the observations that (1) dipicolinic acid (DPA) is present naturally only in bacterial spores; and (2) when bound to Tb3+ ions, DPA triggers intense green luminescence of the ions under ultraviolet excitation; (3) DPA can be released from the viable spores by using L-alanine to make them germinate; and (4) by autoclaving, microwaving, or sonicating the sample, one can cause all the spores (non-viable as well as viable) to release their DPA. One candidate material for use as the adhesive in the present method is polydimethysiloxane (PDMS). In one variant of the method for obtaining counts of all (viable and nonviable) spores the PDMS would be doped with TbCl3. After collection of a sample, the spores immobilized on the sticky tape surface

  16. Oxidation mechanism of Penicillium digitatum spores through neutral oxygen radicals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hashizume, Hiroshi; Ohta, Takayuki; Takeda, Keigo; Ishikawa, Kenji; Hori, Masaru; Ito, Masafumi

    2014-01-01

    To investigate the inactivation process of Penicillium digitatum spores through neutral oxygen species, the spores were treated with an atmospheric-pressure oxygen radical source and observed in-situ using a fluorescent confocal-laser microscope. The treated spores were stained with two fluorescent dyes, 1,1‧-dioctadecyl-3,3,Y,3‧-tetramethylindocarbocyanine perchlorate (DiI) and diphenyl-1-pyrenylphosphine (DPPP). The intracellular organelles as well as the cell membranes in the spores treated with the oxygen radical source were stained with DiI without a major morphological change of the membranes. DPPP staining revealed that the organelles were oxidized by the oxygen radical treatment. These results suggest that neutral oxygen species, especially atomic oxygen, induce a minor structural change or functional inhibition of cell membranes, which leads to the oxidation of the intracellular organelles through the penetration of reactive oxygen species into the cell.

  17. Simulation modeling of anthrax spore dispersion in a bioterrorism incident.

    PubMed

    Reshetin, Vladimir P; Regens, James L

    2003-12-01

    Recent events have increased awareness of the risk posed by terrorist attacks. Bacillus anthracis has resurfaced in the 21st century as a deadly agent of bioterrorism because of its potential for causing massive civilian casualties. This analysis presents the results of a computer simulation of the dispersion of anthrax spores in a typical 50-story, high-rise building after an intentional release during a bioterrorist incident. The model simulates aerosol dispersion in the case of intensive, small-scale convection, which equalizes the concentration of anthrax spores over the building volume. The model can be used to predict the time interval required for spore dispersion throughout a building after a terrorist attack in a high-rise building. The analysis reveals that an aerosol release of even a relatively small volume of anthrax spores during a terrorist incident has the potential to quickly distribute concentrations that are infectious throughout the building. PMID:14641889

  18. Interplanetary Migration of Eucaryotic Cell, Spore of Schizosaccharomyces Pombe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hayashi, N.; Nosaka, J.; Ando, R.; Hashimoto, H.; Yokobori, S.; Narumi, I.; Nakagawa, K.; Yamagishi, A.; Tohda, H.

    2013-11-01

    The Tanpopo mission to examine possible interplanetary migration of microbes is progressing. Spore of Schizosaccharomyces pombe are considered as the exposed samples. In this paper, results of preliminary experiments for the exposure are shown.

  19. Disinfection of Bacillus spores with acidified nitrite.

    PubMed

    Szabo, Jeffrey G; Adcock, Noreen J; Rice, Eugene W

    2014-10-01

    Disinfecting water generated from a bioterrorism contamination event will require large amounts of disinfectant since the volume of water flushed from a drinking water distribution system or wash water collected from a contaminated outdoor area can accumulate quickly. Commonly used disinfectants may be unavailable in the necessary amounts, so evaluation of alternative disinfectants is needed. This study focuses on disinfection of Bacillus spores in water using acidified nitrite. The effect of varying pH (2 or 3), temperature (5°C or 24°C), nitrite concentration (0.01 or 0.1M), buffer (Butterfields or Phosphate Buffered Saline, PBS) and Bacillus species (B. globigii and B. anthracis Sterne) was evaluated. B. globigii was more resistant to disinfection under all water quality conditions. Disinfection was more effective for B. globigii and B. anthracis Sterne at 0.1M nitrite, pH 2, and 24°C. Disinfection of B. anthracis Sterne was enhanced in low ionic strength Butterfields buffer compared to PBS. PMID:25065806

  20. Fate of ingested Clostridium difficile spores in mice.

    PubMed

    Howerton, Amber; Patra, Manomita; Abel-Santos, Ernesto

    2013-01-01

    Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) is a leading cause of antibiotic-associated diarrhea, a major nosocomial complication. The infective form of C. difficile is the spore, a dormant and resistant structure that forms under stress. Although spore germination is the first committed step in CDI onset, the temporal and spatial distribution of ingested C. difficile spores is not clearly understood. We recently reported that CamSA, a synthetic bile salt analog, inhibits C. difficile spore germination in vitro and in vivo. In this study, we took advantage of the anti-germination activity of bile salts to determine the fate of ingested C. difficile spores. We tested four different bile salts for efficacy in preventing CDI. Since CamSA was the only anti-germinant tested able to prevent signs of CDI, we characterized CamSa's in vitro stability, distribution, and cytotoxicity. We report that CamSA is stable to simulated gastrointestinal (GI) environments, but will be degraded by members of the natural microbiota found in a healthy gut. Our data suggest that CamSA will not be systemically available, but instead will be localized to the GI tract. Since in vitro pharmacological parameters were acceptable, CamSA was used to probe the mouse model of CDI. By varying the timing of CamSA dosage, we estimated that C. difficile spores germinated and established infection less than 10 hours after ingestion. We also showed that ingested C. difficile spores rapidly transited through the GI tract and accumulated in the colon and cecum of CamSA-treated mice. From there, C. difficile spores were slowly shed over a 96-hour period. To our knowledge, this is the first report of using molecular probes to obtain disease progression information for C. difficile infection. PMID:24023628

  1. Wet and dry bacterial spore densities determined by buoyant sedimentation.

    PubMed Central

    Tisa, L S; Koshikawa, T; Gerhardt, P

    1982-01-01

    The wet densities of various types of dormant bacterial spores and reference particles were determined by centrifugal buoyant sedimentation in density gradient solutions of three commercial media of high chemical density. With Metrizamide or Renografin, the wet density values for the spores and permeable Sephadex beads were higher than those obtained by a reference direct mass method, and some spore populations were separated into several density bands. With Percoll, all of the wet density values were about the same as those obtained by the direct mass method, and only single density bands resulted. The differences were due to the partial permeation of Metrizamide and Renografin, but not Percoll, into the spores and the permeable Sephadex beads. Consequently, the wet density of the entire spore was accurately represented only by the values obtained with the Percoll gradient and the direct mass method. The dry densities of the spores and particles were determined by gravity buoyant sedimentation in a gradient of two organic solvents, one of high and the other of low chemical density. All of the dry density values obtained by this method were about the same as those obtained by the direct mass method. PMID:6285824

  2. Tip-enhanced Raman scattering of bacillus subtilis spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rusciano, G.; Zito, G.; Pesce, G.; Sasso, A.; Isticato, R.; Ricca, E.

    2015-07-01

    Understanding of the complex interactions of molecules at biological interfaces is a fundamental issue in biochemistry, biotechnology as well as biomedicine. A plethora of biological processes are ruled by the molecular texture of cellular membrane: cellular communications, drug transportations and cellular recognition are just a few examples of such chemically-mediated processes. Tip-Enhanced Raman Scattering (TERS) is a novel, Raman-based technique which is ideally suited for this purpose. TERS relies on the combination of scanning probe microscopy and Raman spectroscopy. The basic idea is the use of a metalled tip as a sort of optical nano-antenna, which gives place to SERS effect close to the tip end. Herein, we present the application of TERS to analyze the surface of Bacillus subtilis spores. The choice of this biological systems is related to the fact that a number of reasons support the use of spores as a mucosal delivery system. The remarkable and well-documented resistance of spores to various environmental and toxic effects make them clear potentials as a novel, surface-display system. Our experimental outcomes demonstrate that TERS is able to provide a nano-scale chemical imaging of spore surface. Moreover, we demonstrate that TERS allows differentiation between wilde-type spore and genetically modified strains. These results hold promise for the characterization and optimization of spore surface for drug-delivery applications.

  3. Quantification of Nonproteolytic Clostridium botulinum Spore Loads in Food Materials

    PubMed Central

    Barker, Gary C.; Malakar, Pradeep K.; Plowman, June

    2016-01-01

    We have produced data and developed analysis to build representations for the concentration of spores of nonproteolytic Clostridium botulinum in materials that are used during the manufacture of minimally processed chilled foods in the United Kingdom. Food materials are categorized into homogenous groups which include meat, fish, shellfish, cereals, fresh plant material, dairy liquid, dairy nonliquid, mushroom and fungi, and dried herbs and spices. Models are constructed in a Bayesian framework and represent a combination of information from a literature survey of spore loads from positive-control experiments that establish a detection limit and from dedicated microbiological tests for real food materials. The detection of nonproteolytic C. botulinum employed an optimized protocol that combines selective enrichment culture with multiplex PCR, and the majority of tests on food materials were negative. Posterior beliefs about spore loads center on a concentration range of 1 to 10 spores kg−1. Posterior beliefs for larger spore loads were most significant for dried herbs and spices and were most sensitive to the detailed results from control experiments. Probability distributions for spore loads are represented in a convenient form that can be used for numerical analysis and risk assessments. PMID:26729721

  4. Infectivity of microsporidia spores stored in water at environmental temperatures.

    PubMed

    Li, X; Palmer, R; Trout, J M; Fayer, R

    2003-02-01

    To determine how long waterborne spores of Encephalitozoon cuniculi, E. hellem, and E. intestinalis could survive at environmental temperatures, culture-derived spores were stored in water at 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30 C and tested for infectivity in monolayer cultures of Madin Darby bovine kidney (MDBK) cells. At 10 C, spores of E. intestinalis were still infective after 12 mo, whereas those of E. hellem and E. cuniculi were infective for 9 and 3 mo, respectively. At 15 C, spores of the same species remained infective for 10, 6, and 2 mo, and at 20 C, for 7, 5, and 1 mo, respectively. At 25 C, spores of E. intestinalis and E. hellem were infective for 3 mo, but those of E. cuniculi were infective for only 3 wk. At 30 C, the former 2 species were infective for 3 wk and 1 mo, respectively, and the latter species for only 1 wk. These findings indicate that spores of different species of Encephalitozoon differ in their longevity and temperature tolerance, but at temperatures from 10 to 30 C, all 3 have the potential to remain infective in the environment long enough to become widely dispersed. PMID:12659327

  5. Infectivity of microsporidia spores stored in seawater at environmental temperatures.

    PubMed

    Fayer, R

    2004-06-01

    To determine how long spores of Encephalitozoon cuniculi, E. hellem, and E. intestinalis remain viable in seawater at environmental temperatures, culture-derived spores were stored in 10, 20, and 30 ppt artificial seawater at 10 and 20 C. At intervals of 1, 2, 4, 8, and 12 wk, spores were tested for infectivity in monolayer cultures of Madin Darby bovine kidney cells. Spores of E. hellem appeared the most robust, some remaining infectious in 30 ppt seawater at 10 C for 12 wk and in 30 ppt seawater at 20 C for 2 wk. Those of E. intestinalis were slightly less robust, remaining infectious in 30 ppt seawater at 10 and 20 C for 1 and 2 wk, respectively. Spores of E. cuniculi remained infectious in 10 ppt seawater at 10 and 20 C for 2 wk but not at higher salinities. These findings indicate that the spores of the 3 species of Encephalitozoon vary in their ability to remain viable when exposed to a conservative range of salinities and temperatures found in nature but, based strictly on salinity and temperature, can potentially remain infectious long enough to become widely dispersed in estuarine and coastal waters. PMID:15270118

  6. Infrared Signatures to Discriminate Viability of Autoclaved Bacillus Spores

    SciTech Connect

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

    2011-10-06

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

  7. Lipids stimulate spore germination in the entomopathogenic ascomycete Ascosphaera aggregata.

    PubMed

    James, R R; Buckner, J S

    2004-10-01

    The alfalfa leafcutting bee (Megachile rotundata) is solitary and managed on a large scale for pollination of alfalfa seed crops. The bees nest in holes drilled in wood or polystyrene blocks, and their larvae are highly prone to a fungal disease called chalkbrood. The most prevalent form of chalkbrood is caused by Ascosphaera aggregata, but this ascomycete is difficult to culture. Hyphae will grow on standard fungal media, but spore germination is difficult to achieve and highly variable. We found that germination can be enhanced with oils. Lipids derived from plants and bee larvae increased germination from 50% (without oil) to 75-85% (with oil). Percent germination was significantly greater in the presence of lipids but germination was not significantly different when different oils, including mineral oil, were used. A. aggregata spores oriented along the oil-aqueous interface in the broth in a polar fashion, with swelling and germ tube formation always occurring into the aqueous portion of the broth. The other half of the spore tended to attach to a lipid droplet, where it remained, without swelling, during germ tube formation. The physical attachment of spores to the oil-aqueous interface is what most probably stimulates spore germination, as opposed to some nutritional stimulation. However, further research is needed to determine if and where the spores encounter such an interface when germinating in the host gut, where germination normally occurs. PMID:15645171

  8. Atmospheric mold spore counts in relation to meteorological parameters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Katial, R. K.; Zhang, Yiming; Jones, Richard H.; Dyer, Philip D.

    Fungal spore counts of Cladosporium, Alternaria, and Epicoccum were studied during 8 years in Denver, Colorado. Fungal spore counts were obtained daily during the pollinating season by a Rotorod sampler. Weather data were obtained from the National Climatic Data Center. Daily averages of temperature, relative humidity, daily precipitation, barometric pressure, and wind speed were studied. A time series analysis was performed on the data to mathematically model the spore counts in relation to weather parameters. Using SAS PROC ARIMA software, a regression analysis was performed, regressing the spore counts on the weather variables assuming an autoregressive moving average (ARMA) error structure. Cladosporium was found to be positively correlated (P<0.02) with average daily temperature, relative humidity, and negatively correlated with precipitation. Alternaria and Epicoccum did not show increased predictability with weather variables. A mathematical model was derived for Cladosporium spore counts using the annual seasonal cycle and significant weather variables. The model for Alternaria and Epicoccum incorporated the annual seasonal cycle. Fungal spore counts can be modeled by time series analysis and related to meteorological parameters controlling for seasonallity; this modeling can provide estimates of exposure to fungal aeroallergens.

  9. Survival of bacterial and mold spores in air filter media

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maus, R.; Goppelsröder, A.; Umhauer, H.

    The present study deals with the survival of bacterial and mold spores ( B. subtilis, A. niger) in new and used air filter media. In an filtration test unit samples of different filter media were challenged with specific microbial aerosols and the viability or survival of the microorganisms collected in the filter media was studied. No notable decline or increase in the viability of B. subtilis in new or used filter samples was observed within 5 days. No differences were observed when filter media were either continuously exposed to air flow or stored under static conditions. No influence of relative humidity (RH=30-85%) on the viability of B. subtilis spores was detected as well. Under ideal humidity conditions (RH>98%) no bacterial growth occurred within all the investigated filter media which is due to the lack of nutrients. Similar results were obtained when employing A. niger spores at low relative humidities (RH<35%). However, in two new filter media the viability declined notably at high relative humidity (RH>85%). This trend is attributed to the combined effect of spore rehydration and diffusion of fiber substances into the spores which rendered the spores prone to air flow and air toxics. Under static conditions in a climatic chamber (RH>98%) abundant mold growth occurred in two filter media. The results indicate that atmospheric dust deposited in air filters may serve as nutrient for molds if humidity is sufficient and filters are not exposed to an air flow.

  10. Quantification of Nonproteolytic Clostridium botulinum Spore Loads in Food Materials.

    PubMed

    Barker, Gary C; Malakar, Pradeep K; Plowman, June; Peck, Michael W

    2016-01-01

    We have produced data and developed analysis to build representations for the concentration of spores of nonproteolytic Clostridium botulinum in materials that are used during the manufacture of minimally processed chilled foods in the United Kingdom. Food materials are categorized into homogenous groups which include meat, fish, shellfish, cereals, fresh plant material, dairy liquid, dairy nonliquid, mushroom and fungi, and dried herbs and spices. Models are constructed in a Bayesian framework and represent a combination of information from a literature survey of spore loads from positive-control experiments that establish a detection limit and from dedicated microbiological tests for real food materials. The detection of nonproteolytic C. botulinum employed an optimized protocol that combines selective enrichment culture with multiplex PCR, and the majority of tests on food materials were negative. Posterior beliefs about spore loads center on a concentration range of 1 to 10 spores kg(-1). Posterior beliefs for larger spore loads were most significant for dried herbs and spices and were most sensitive to the detailed results from control experiments. Probability distributions for spore loads are represented in a convenient form that can be used for numerical analysis and risk assessments. PMID:26729721

  11. SWP25, a novel protein associated with the Nosema bombycis endospore.

    PubMed

    Wu, Zhengli; Li, Yanhong; Pan, Guoqing; Zhou, Zeyang; Xiang, Zhonghuai

    2009-01-01

    Microsporidia are eukaryotic, obligate intracellular, spore-forming parasites. The resistant spores, which harbor a rigid cell wall, are critical for their host-to-host transmission and persistence in the environment. The spore wall comprises two major layers: the exospore and the endospore. In Nosema bombycis, two spore wall proteins have been characterized--an endosporal protein, SWP30, and an exosporal protein, SWP32. Here, we report the identification of the third spore wall protein of N. bombycis, SWP25, the gene of which has no known homologue. SWP25 is predicted to posses a signal peptide and a heparin-binding motif. Immunoelectron microscopy analysis showed that this protein is localized to the endospore. This characterization of a new spore wall protein of N. bombycis may facilitate our investigation of the relationship between N. bombycis and its host, Bombyx mori. PMID:19457051

  12. IMMUNOCYTOCHEMICAL LOCALIZATION OF STACHYLYSIN IN STACHYBOTRYS CHARTARUM SPORES AND SPORE-IMPACTED MOUSE AND RAT LUNG TISSUES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Stachylysin is a proteinaceous hemolytic agent that is producted by S. chartarum. Stachylysin was found, using immunohistochemistical and immunocytochemical methods, to be localized in S. chartarum spores/mycelia primarily in the inner wall suggesting that it is constitutively ...

  13. UV-Photobiology of bacterial spores in space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

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

  14. Characterizing and handling different kinds of AM fungal spores in the rhizosphere.

    PubMed

    Sun, Xueguang; Hu, Wentao; Tang, Ming; Chen, Hui

    2016-06-01

    Spores are important propagules as well as the most reliable species-distinguishing traits of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi. During surveys of AM fungal communities, spore enumeration and spore identification are frequently conducted, but generally little attention is given to the age and viability of the spores. In this study, AM fungal spores in the rhizosphere were characterized as live or dead by vital staining and by performing a germination assay. A considerable proportion of the spores in the rhizosphere were dead despite their intact appearance. Furthermore, morphological and molecular analyses of spores to determine species identity revealed that both viable spores and dead spores with contents were identified. The accurate identification of spores at different developmental stages on the basis of morphology requires considerable experience. Our findings suggest that surveys of AM fungal communities based on spore enumeration and morphological and molecular identification are likely to be inaccurate, primarily because of the large proportion of dead spores in the rhizosphere. A viability check is recommended prior to spore molecular identification, and the use of trap cultures would give more reliable morphological identification results. We show that the abundance and activity of AM fungi in the rhizosphere can be determined by calculating the density of viable spores and the density of spores that could germinate. The adoption of these methods should provide a more reliable basis for further AM fungal community analysis. PMID:27116963

  15. Analysis of the Loss in Heat and Acid Resistance during Germination of Spores of Bacillus Species

    PubMed Central

    Luu, Stephanie

    2014-01-01

    A major event in the nutrient germination of spores of Bacillus species is release of the spores' large depot of dipicolinic acid (DPA). This event is preceded by both commitment, in which spores continue through germination even if germinants are removed, and loss of spore heat resistance. The latter event is puzzling, since spore heat resistance is due largely to core water content, which does not change until DPA is released during germination. We now find that for spores of two Bacillus species, the early loss in heat resistance during germination is most likely due to release of committed spores' DPA at temperatures not lethal for dormant spores. Loss in spore acid resistance during germination also paralleled commitment and was also associated with the release of DPA from committed spores at acid concentrations not lethal for dormant spores. These observations plus previous findings that DPA release during germination is preceded by a significant release of spore core cations suggest that there is a significant change in spore inner membrane permeability at commitment. Presumably, this altered membrane cannot retain DPA during heat or acid treatments innocuous for dormant spores, resulting in DPA-less spores that are rapidly killed. PMID:24563034

  16. Improvement of Biological Indicators by Uniformly Distributing Bacillus subtilis Spores in Monolayers To Evaluate Enhanced Spore Decontamination Technologies.

    PubMed

    Raguse, Marina; Fiebrandt, Marcel; Stapelmann, Katharina; Madela, Kazimierz; Laue, Michael; Lackmann, Jan-Wilm; Thwaite, Joanne E; Setlow, Peter; Awakowicz, Peter; Moeller, Ralf

    2016-04-01

    Novel decontamination technologies, including cold low-pressure plasma and blue light (400 nm), are promising alternatives to conventional surface decontamination methods. However, the standardization of the assessment of such sterilization processes remains to be accomplished. Bacterial endospores of the genera Bacillus and Geobacillus are frequently used as biological indicators (BIs) of sterility. Ensuring standardized and reproducible BIs for reliable testing procedures is a significant problem in industrial settings. In this study, an electrically driven spray deposition device was developed, allowing fast, reproducible, and homogeneous preparation of Bacillus subtilis 168 spore monolayers on glass surfaces. A detailed description of the structural design as well as the operating principle of the spraying device is given. The reproducible formation of spore monolayers of up to 5 × 10(7) spores per sample was verified by scanning electron microscopy. Surface inactivation studies revealed that monolayered spores were inactivated by UV-C (254 nm), low-pressure argon plasma (500 W, 10 Pa, 100 standard cubic cm per min), and blue light (400 nm) significantly faster than multilayered spores were. We have thus succeeded in the uniform preparation of reproducible, highly concentrated spore monolayers with the potential to generate BIs for a variety of nonpenetrating surface decontamination techniques. PMID:26801572

  17. Fungal Spores Viability on the International Space Station

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2016-04-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-11-01

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

  20. Concerted action of two avirulent spore effectors activates Reaction to Puccinia graminis 1 (Rpg1)-mediated cereal stem rust resistance.

    PubMed

    Nirmala, Jayaveeramuthu; Drader, Tom; Lawrence, Paulraj K; Yin, Chuntao; Hulbert, Scot; Steber, Camille M; Steffenson, Brian J; Szabo, Les J; von Wettstein, Diter; Kleinhofs, Andris

    2011-08-30

    The barley stem rust resistance gene Reaction to Puccinia graminis 1 (Rpg1), encoding a receptor-like kinase, confers durable resistance to the stem rust pathogen Puccinia graminis f. sp. tritici. The fungal urediniospores form adhesion structures with the leaf epidermal cells within 1 h of inoculation, followed by hyphae and haustorium formation. The RPG1 protein is constitutively expressed and not phosphorylated. On inoculation with avirulent urediniospores, it is phosphorylated in vivo within 5 min and subsequently degraded. Application of arginine-glycine-aspartic acid peptide loops prevented the formation of adhesion structures for spore attachment, the phosphorylation of RPG1, and germination of the viable spores. Arginine-glycine-aspartic acid affinity chromatography of proteins from the ungerminated avirulent rust spores led to the purification and identification of a protein with fibronectin type III and breast cancer type 1 susceptibility protein domains and a vacuolar protein sorting-associated protein 9 with a coupling of ubiquitin to endoplasmic reticulum degradation domain. Both proteins are required to induce in vivo phosphorylation and degradation of RPG1. Combined application of both proteins caused hypersensitive reaction on the stem rust-resistant cultivar Morex but not on the susceptible cultivar Steptoe. Expression studies indicated that mRNA of both genes are present in ungerminated urediniospores and are constitutively transcribed in sporelings, infected leaves, and haustoria in the investigated avirulent races. Evidence is presented that RPG1, in yeast, interacts with the two protein effectors from the urediniospores that activate cooperatively the stem rust resistance protein RPG1 long before haustoria formation. PMID:21873196

  1. Dielectric properties of native and decoated spores of Bacillus megaterium.

    PubMed Central

    Carstensen, E L; Marquis, R E; Child, S Z; Bender, G R

    1979-01-01

    A general model for use in interpreting dielectric data obtained with bacterial endospores is developed and applied to past results for Bacillus cereus spores and new results for Bacillus megaterium spores. The latter were also subjected to a decoating treatment to yield dormant cells with damaged outer membranes that could be germinated with lysozyme. For both spore types, core ions appeared to be completely immobilized, and decoating of B. megaterium spores did not affect this extreme state of electrostasis in the core. The cortex of B. megaterium appeared to contain a high level of mobile ions, in the cortex of B. cereus. The outer membrane-coat complex of B. megaterium acted dielectrically as an insulating layer around the cortex, so that native dormant spores showed a Maxwell-Wagner dispersion over the frequency range from about 1 to 20 MHz. The decoating treatment resulted in a shift in the dispersion to frequencies below the range of observation. Increases in cell conductivity in response to increases in environmental ionic strength indicated that the coats. of B. megaterium could be penetrated by environmental ions and that they had an inherent fixed charge concentration of about 10 to 20 milliequivalents per liter. In contrast, the dispersion for B. cereus spores was very sensitive to changes in environmental ion concentration, and it appeared that some 40% of the spore volume could be penetrated by environmental ions and that these ions traversed a dielectrically effective layer, either the exosporium or the outer membrane. It appears that dormancy is associated with extreme electrostasis of core ions but not necessarily of ions in enveloping structures and that the coat-outer membrane complex is dielectrically effective but not required for maintenance of extreme electrostasis in the core. PMID:118161

  2. Viable spore counts in biological controls pre-sterilization.

    PubMed

    Brusca, María I; Bernat, María I; Turcot, Liliana; Nastri, Natalia; Nastri, Maria; Rosa, Alcira

    2005-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to evaluate the total count of viable spores in standardized inoculated carriers pre-sterilization. Samples of "Bacterial Spore Sterilization Strip" (R Biological Laboratories) (well before their expiry date) were divided into Group A (B. subtilis) and Group B (B. stearothermophylus). Twenty-four strips were tested per group. The strips were minced in groups of three, placed in chilled sterile water and vortexed for 5 minutes to obtain a homogenous suspension. Ten ml of the homogenous suspension were transferred to two sterile jars, i.e. one jar per group. The samples were then heated in a water bath at 95 degrees C (Group A) or 80 degrees C (Group B) for 15 minutes and cooled rapidly in an ice bath at 0- 4 degrees C during 15 minutes. Successive dilutions were performed until a final aliquot of 30 to 300 colony-forming units (CFU) was obtained. The inoculums were placed in Petri dishes with culture medium (soy extract, casein agar adapted for spores, melted and cooled to 45-50 degrees C) and incubated at 55 degrees C or 37 degrees C. Statistical analysis of the data was performed. A larger number of spores were found at 48 hours than at 24 hours. However, this finding did not hold true for all the groups. The present results show that monitoring viable spores pre-sterilization would guarantee the accuracy of the data. Total spore counts must be within 50 and 300% of the number of spores indicated in the biological control. The procedure is essential to guarantee the efficacy of the biological control. PMID:16673791

  3. Thermal inactivation and injury of Bacillus stearothermophilus spores.

    PubMed Central

    Feeherry, F E; Munsey, D T; Rowley, D B

    1987-01-01

    Aqueous spore suspensions of Bacillus stearothermophilus ATCC 12980 were heated at different temperatures for various time intervals in a resistometer, spread plated on antibiotic assay medium supplemented with 0.1% soluble starch without (AAMS) or with (AAMS-S) 0.9% NaCl, and incubated at 55 degrees C unless otherwise indicated. Uninjured spores formed colonies on AAMS and AAMS-S; injured spores formed colonies only on AAMS. Values of D, the decimal reduction time (time required at a given temperature for destruction of 90% of the cells), when survivors were recovered on AAMS were 62.04, 18.00, 8.00, 3.33, and 1.05 min at 112.8, 115.6, 118.3, 121.1, and 123.9 degrees C, respectively. Recovery on AAMS-S resulted in reduced decimal reduction time. The computed z value (the temperature change which will alter the D value by a factor of 10) for spores recovered on AAMS was 8.3 degrees C; for spores recovered on AAMS-S, it was 7.6 degrees C. The rates of inactivation and injury were similar. Injury (judged by salt sensitivity) was a linear function of the heating temperature. At a heating temperature of less than or equal to 118.3 degrees C, spore injury was indicated by the curvilinear portion of the survival curve (judged by salt sensitivity), showing that injury occurred early in the thermal treatment as well as during logarithmic inactivation (reduced decimal reduction time). Heat-injured spores showed an increased sensitivity not only to 0.9% NaCl but also to other postprocessing environmental factors such as incubation temperatures, a pH of 6.6 for the medium, and anaerobiosis during incubation. PMID:3566270

  4. Expression of Meiotic Drive Elements Spore Killer-2 and Spore Killer-3 in Asci of Neurospora Tetrasperma

    PubMed Central

    Raju, N. B.; Perkins, D. D.

    1991-01-01

    It was shown previously that when a chromosomal Spore killer factor is heterozygous in Neurospora species with eight-spored asci, the four sensitive ascospores in each ascus die and the four survivors are all killers. Sk-2(K) and Sk-3(K) are nonrecombining haplotypes that segregate with the centromere of linkage group III. No killing occurs when either one of these killers is homozygous, but each is sensitive to killing by the other in crosses of Sk-2(K) X Sk-3(K). In the present study, Sk-2(K) and Sk-3(K) were transferred by recurrent backcrosses from the eight-spored species Neurospora crassa into Neurospora tetrasperma, a pseudohomothallic species which normally makes asci with four large spores, each heterokaryotic for mating type and for any other centromere-linked genes that are heterozygous in the cross. The action of Sk-2(K) and Sk-3(K) in N. tetrasperma is that predicted from their behavior in eight-spored species. A sensitive nucleus is protected from killing if it is enclosed in the same ascospore with a killer nucleus. Crosses of Sk-2(K) X Sk-2(S), Sk-3(K) X Sk-3(S), and Sk-2(K) X Sk-3(K) all produce four-spored asci that are wild type in appearance, with the ascospores heterokaryotic and viable. The Eight-spore gene E, which shows variable penetrance, was used to obtain N. tetrasperma asci in which two to eight spores are small and homokaryotic. When killer and sensitive alleles are segregating in the presence of E, only those ascospores that contain a killer allele survive. Half of the small ascospores are killed. In crosses of Sk-2(K) X Sk-3(K) (with E heterozygous), effectively all small ascospores are killed. The ability of N. tetrasperma to carry killer elements in cryptic condition suggests a possible role for Spore killers in the origin of pseudohomothallism, with adoption of the four-spored mode restoring ascospore viability of crosses in which killing would otherwise occur. PMID:1834522

  5. Inactivation of chemical and heat-resistant spores of Bacillus and Geobacillus by nitrogen cold atmospheric plasma evokes distinct changes in morphology and integrity of spores.

    PubMed

    van Bokhorst-van de Veen, Hermien; Xie, Houyu; Esveld, Erik; Abee, Tjakko; Mastwijk, Hennie; Nierop Groot, Masja

    2015-02-01

    Bacterial spores are resistant to severe conditions and form a challenge to eradicate from food or food packaging material. Cold atmospheric plasma (CAP) treatment is receiving more attention as potential sterilization method at relatively mild conditions but the exact mechanism of inactivation is still not fully understood. In this study, the biocidal effect by nitrogen CAP was determined for chemical (hypochlorite and hydrogen peroxide), physical (UV) and heat-resistant spores. The three different sporeformers used are Bacillus cereus a food-borne pathogen, and Bacillus atrophaeus and Geobacillus stearothermophilus that are used as biological indicators for validation of chemical sterilization and thermal processes, respectively. The different spores showed variation in their degree of inactivation by applied heat, hypochlorite, hydrogen peroxide, and UV treatments, whereas similar inactivation results were obtained with the different spores treated with nitrogen CAP. G. stearothermophilus spores displayed high resistance to heat, hypochlorite, hydrogen peroxide, while for UV treatment B. atrophaeus spores are most tolerant. Scanning electron microscopy analysis revealed distinct morphological changes for nitrogen CAP-treated B. cereus spores including etching effects and the appearance of rough spore surfaces, whereas morphology of spores treated with heat or disinfectants showed no such changes. Moreover, microscopy analysis revealed CAP-exposed B. cereus spores to turn phase grey conceivably because of water influx indicating damage of the spores, a phenomenon that was not observed for non-treated spores. In addition, data are supplied that exclude UV radiation as determinant of antimicrobial activity of nitrogen CAP. Overall, this study shows that nitrogen CAP treatment has a biocidal effect on selected Bacillus and Geobacillus spores associated with alterations in spore surface morphology and loss of spore integrity. PMID:25481059

  6. Studies of the Commitment Step in the Germination of Spores of Bacillus Species ▿

    PubMed Central

    Yi, Xuan; Setlow, Peter

    2010-01-01

    Spores of Bacillus species are said to be committed when they continue through nutrient germination even when germinants are removed or their binding to spores' nutrient germinant receptors (GRs) is both reversed and inhibited. Measurement of commitment and the subsequent release of dipicolinic acid (DPA) during nutrient germination of spores of Bacillus cereus and Bacillus subtilis showed that heat activation, increased nutrient germinant concentrations, and higher average levels of GRs/spore significantly decreased the times needed for commitment, as well as lag times between commitment and DPA release. These lag times were also decreased dramatically by the action of one of the spores' two redundant cortex lytic enzymes (CLEs), CwlJ, but not by the other CLE, SleB, and CwlJ action did not affect the timing of commitment. The timing of commitment and the lag time between commitment and DPA release were also dependent on the specific GR activated to cause spore germination. For spore populations, the lag times between commitment and DPA release were increased significantly in spores that germinated late compared to those that germinated early, and individual spores that germinated late may have had lower appropriate GR levels/spore than spores that germinated early. These findings together provide new insight into the commitment step in spore germination and suggest several factors that may contribute to the large heterogeneity among the timings of various events in the germination of individual spores in spore populations. PMID:20435722

  7. The Exosporium Layer of Bacterial Spores: a Connection to the Environment and the Infected Host.

    PubMed

    Stewart, George C

    2015-12-01

    Much of what we know regarding bacterial spore structure and function has been learned from studies of the genetically well-characterized bacterium Bacillus subtilis. Molecular aspects of spore structure, assembly, and function are well defined. However, certain bacteria produce spores with an outer spore layer, the exosporium, which is not present on B. subtilis spores. Our understanding of the composition and biological functions of the exosporium layer is much more limited than that of other aspects of the spore. Because the bacterial spore surface is important for the spore's interactions with the environment, as well as being the site of interaction of the spore with the host's innate immune system in the case of spore-forming bacterial pathogens, the exosporium is worthy of continued investigation. Recent exosporium studies have focused largely on members of the Bacillus cereus family, principally Bacillus anthracis and Bacillus cereus. Our understanding of the composition of the exosporium, the pathway of its assembly, and its role in spore biology is now coming into sharper focus. This review expands on a 2007 review of spore surface layers which provided an excellent conceptual framework of exosporium structure and function (A. O. Henriques and C. P. Moran, Jr., Annu Rev Microbiol 61:555-588, 2007, http://dx.doi.org/10.1146/annurev.micro.61.080706.093224). That review began a process of considering outer spore layers as an integrated, multilayered structure rather than simply regarding the outer spore components as independent parts. PMID:26512126

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2015-08-12

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

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

    DOE PAGESBeta

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

    2015-08-12

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  12. HtrC Is Involved in Proteolysis of YpeB during Germination of Bacillus anthracis and Bacillus subtilis Spores

    PubMed Central

    Bernhards, Casey B.; Chen, Yan; Toutkoushian, Hannah

    2014-01-01

    Bacterial endospores can remain dormant for decades yet can respond to nutrients, germinate, and resume growth within minutes. An essential step in the germination process is degradation of the spore cortex peptidoglycan wall, and the SleB protein in Bacillus species plays a key role in this process. Stable incorporation of SleB into the spore requires the YpeB protein, and some evidence suggests that the two proteins interact within the dormant spore. Early during germination, YpeB is proteolytically processed to a stable fragment. In this work, the primary sites of YpeB cleavage were identified in Bacillus anthracis, and it was shown that the stable products are comprised of the C-terminal domain of YpeB. Modification of the predominant YpeB cleavage sites reduced proteolysis, but cleavage at other sites still resulted in loss of full-length YpeB. A B. anthracis strain lacking the HtrC protease did not generate the same stable YpeB products. In B. anthracis and Bacillus subtilis htrC mutants, YpeB was partially stabilized during germination but was still degraded at a reduced rate by other, unidentified proteases. Purified HtrC cleaved YpeB to a fragment similar to that observed in vivo, and this cleavage was stimulated by Mn2+ or Ca2+ ions. A lack of HtrC did not stabilize YpeB or SleB during spore formation in the absence of the partner protein, indicating other proteases are involved in their degradation during sporulation. PMID:25384476

  13. GAS2 and GAS4, a Pair of Developmentally Regulated Genes Required for Spore Wall Assembly in Saccharomyces cerevisiae▿

    PubMed Central

    Ragni, Enrico; Coluccio, Alison; Rolli, Eleonora; Rodriguez-Peña, José Manuel; Colasante, Gaia; Arroyo, Javier; Neiman, Aaron M.; Popolo, Laura

    2007-01-01

    The GAS multigene family of Saccharomyces cerevisiae is composed of five paralogs (GAS1 to GAS5). GAS1 is the only one of these genes that has been characterized to date. It encodes a glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored protein functioning as a β(1,3)-glucan elongase and required for proper cell wall assembly during vegetative growth. In this study, we characterize the roles of the GAS2 and GAS4 genes. These genes are expressed exclusively during sporulation. Their mRNA levels showed a peak at 7 h from induction of sporulation and then decreased. Gas2 and Gas4 proteins were detected and reached maximum levels between 8 and 10 h from induction of sporulation, a time roughly coincident with spore wall assembly. The double null gas2 gas4 diploid mutant showed a severe reduction in the efficiency of sporulation, an increased permeability of the spores to exogenous substances, and production of inviable spores, whereas the single gas2 and gas4 null diploids were similar to the parental strain. An analysis of spore ultrastructure indicated that the loss of Gas2 and Gas4 proteins affected the proper attachment of the glucan to the chitosan layer, probably as a consequence of the lack of coherence of the glucan layer. The ectopic expression of GAS2 and GAS4 genes in a gas1 null mutant revealed that these proteins are redundant versions of Gas1p specialized to function in a compartment at a pH value close to neutral. PMID:17189486

  14. Detection of Bacterial Spores with Lanthanide-Macrocycle Binary Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Cable, Morgan L.; Kirby, James P.; Levine, Dana J.; Manary, Micah J.; Gray, Harry B.; Ponce, Adrian

    2009-01-01

    The detection of bacterial spores via dipicolinate-triggered lanthanide luminescence has been improved in terms of detection limit, stability, and susceptibility to interferents by use of lanthanide-macrocycle binary complexes. Specifically, we compared the effectiveness of Sm, Eu, Tb and Dy complexes with the macrocycle 1,4,7,10-tetraazacyclododecane-1,7-diacetate (DO2A) to the corresponding lanthanide aquo ions. The Ln(DO2A)+ binary complexes bind dipicolinic acid (DPA), a major constituent of bacterial spores, with greater affinity and demonstrate significant improvement in bacterial spore detection. Of the four luminescent lanthanides studied, the terbium complex exhibits the greatest dipicolinate binding affinity (100-fold greater than Tb3+ alone, and 10-fold greater than other Ln(DO2A)+ complexes) and highest quantum yield. Moreover, the inclusion of DO2A extends the pH range over which Tb-DPA coordination is stable, reduces the interference of calcium ions nearly 5-fold, and mitigates phosphate interference 1000-fold compared to free terbium alone. In addition, detection of Bacillus atrophaeus bacterial spores was improved by the use of Tb(DO2A)+, yielding a 3-fold increase in the signal-to-noise ratio over Tb3+. Out of the eight cases investigated, the Tb(DO2A)+ binary complex is best for the detection of bacterial spores. PMID:19537757

  15. Natural dissemination of Bacillus anthracis spores in northern Canada.

    PubMed

    Dragon, D C; Bader, D E; Mitchell, J; Woollen, N

    2005-03-01

    Soil samples were collected from around fresh and year-old bison carcasses and areas not associated with known carcasses in Wood Buffalo National Park during an active anthrax outbreak in the summer of 2001. Sample selection with a grid provided the most complete coverage of a site. Soil samples were screened for viable Bacillus anthracis spores via selective culture, phenotypic analysis, and PCR. Bacillus anthracis spores were isolated from 28.4% of the samples. The highest concentrations of B. anthracis spores were found directly adjacent to fresh carcasses and invariably corresponded to locations where the soil had been saturated with body fluids escaping the carcass through either natural body orifices or holes torn by scavengers. The majority of positive samples were found within 2 m of both year-old and fresh carcasses and probably originated from scavengers churning up and spreading the body fluid-saturated soil as they fed. Trails of lesser contamination radiating from the carcasses probably resulted from spore dissemination through adhesion to scavengers and through larger scavengers dragging away disarticulated limbs. Comparison of samples from minimally scavenged and fully necropsied carcass sites revealed no statistically significant difference in the level of B. anthracis spore contamination. Therefore, the immediate area around a suspected anthrax carcass should be considered substantially contaminated regardless of the condition of the carcass. PMID:15746366

  16. Environmental Persistence of Bacillus anthracis and Bacillus subtilis Spores

    PubMed Central

    Wood, Joseph P.; Meyer, Kathryn M.; Kelly, Thomas J.; Choi, Young W.; Rogers, James V.; Riggs, Karen B.; Willenberg, Zachary J.

    2015-01-01

    There is a lack of data for how the viability of biological agents may degrade over time in different environments. In this study, experiments were conducted to determine the persistence of Bacillus anthracis and Bacillus subtilis spores on outdoor materials with and without exposure to simulated sunlight, using ultraviolet (UV)-A/B radiation. Spores were inoculated onto glass, wood, concrete, and topsoil and recovered after periods of 2, 14, 28, and 56 days. Recovery and inactivation kinetics for the two species were assessed for each surface material and UV exposure condition. Results suggest that with exposure to UV, decay of spore viability for both Bacillus species occurs in two phases, with an initial rapid decay, followed by a slower inactivation period. The exception was with topsoil, in which there was minimal loss of spore viability in soil over 56 days, with or without UV exposure. The greatest loss in viable spore recovery occurred on glass with UV exposure, with nearly a four log10 reduction after just two days. In most cases, B. subtilis had a slower rate of decay than B. anthracis, although less B. subtilis was recovered initially. PMID:26372011

  17. Scanning Surface Potential Microscopy of Spore Adhesion on Surfaces

    SciTech Connect

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

    2012-01-01

    The adhesion of spores of Bacillus anthracis - the cause of anthrax and a likely biological threat - to solid surfaces is an important consideration in cleanup after an accidental or deliberate release. However, because of safety concerns, directly studying B. anthracis spores with advanced instrumentation is problematic. As a first step, we are examining the electrostatic potential of Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), which is a closely related species that is often used as a simulant to study B. anthracis. Scanning surface potential microscopy (SSPM), also known as Kelvin probe force microscopy (KPFM), was used to investigate the influence of relative humidity (RH) on the surface electrostatic potential of Bt that had adhered to silica, mica, or gold substrates. AFM/SSPM side-by-side images were obtained separately in air, at various values of RH, after an aqueous droplet with spores was applied on each surface and allowed to dry before measurements. In the SSPM images, a negative potential on the surface of the spores was observed compared with that of the substrates. The surface potential decreased as the humidity increased. Spores were unable to adhere to a surface with an extremely negative potential, such as mica.

  18. Environmental Persistence of Bacillus anthracis and Bacillus subtilis Spores.

    PubMed

    Wood, Joseph P; Meyer, Kathryn M; Kelly, Thomas J; Choi, Young W; Rogers, James V; Riggs, Karen B; Willenberg, Zachary J

    2015-01-01

    There is a lack of data for how the viability of biological agents may degrade over time in different environments. In this study, experiments were conducted to determine the persistence of Bacillus anthracis and Bacillus subtilis spores on outdoor materials with and without exposure to simulated sunlight, using ultraviolet (UV)-A/B radiation. Spores were inoculated onto glass, wood, concrete, and topsoil and recovered after periods of 2, 14, 28, and 56 days. Recovery and inactivation kinetics for the two species were assessed for each surface material and UV exposure condition. Results suggest that with exposure to UV, decay of spore viability for both Bacillus species occurs in two phases, with an initial rapid decay, followed by a slower inactivation period. The exception was with topsoil, in which there was minimal loss of spore viability in soil over 56 days, with or without UV exposure. The greatest loss in viable spore recovery occurred on glass with UV exposure, with nearly a four log10 reduction after just two days. In most cases, B. subtilis had a slower rate of decay than B. anthracis, although less B. subtilis was recovered initially. PMID:26372011

  19. Heat Activation of Phycomyces blakesleeanus Spores: Thermodynamics and Effect of Alcohols, Furfural, and High Pressure

    PubMed Central

    Thevelein, Johan M.; Van Assche, Jozef A.; Carlier, Albert R.; Heremans, Karel

    1979-01-01

    The thermodynamic parameters for the heat activation of the sporangiospores of Phycomyces blakesleeanus were determined. For the apparent activation enthalpy (ΔH#) a value of 1,151 kJ/mol was found, whereas a value of 3,644 J./°K·mol was calculated for the apparent activation entropy (ΔS#). n-Alcohols (from methanol to octanol), phenethyl alcohol, and furfural lowered the activation temperature of P. blakesleeanus spores. The heat resistance of the spores was lowered concomitantly. The effect of the alcohols was a linear function of the concentration in the range that could be applied. When the log of the concentration needed to produce an equal shift of the activation temperature was plotted for each alochol against the log of the octanol/water partition coefficient, a straight line was obtained. The free energy of adsorption of the n-alcohols to their active sites was calculated to be −2,487 J/mol of CH2 groups. Although still inconclusive, this points toward an involvement of protein in the activation process. The effect of phenethyl alcohol was similar to the effect of n-alcohols, but furfural produced a greater shift than would be expected from the value of its partition coefficient. When the heat activation of the spores was performed under high pressure, the activation temperature was raised by 2 to 4°K/1,000 atm. However, with pressures higher than 1,000 atm (1.013 × 105 kPa) the activation temperature was lowered until the pressure became lethal (more than 2,500 atm). It is known that membrane phase transition temperatures are shifted upward by about 20°K/1,000 atm and that protein conformational changes are shifted upward by 2 to 6°K/1,000 atm. Consequently, heat activation of fungal spores seems to be triggered by a protein conformational change and not by a membrane phase transition. Activation volumes of −54.1 cm3/mol at 38°C and −79.3 cm2/mol at 40°C were found for the lowering effect of high pressure on the heat activation temperature

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2013-12-01

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

  1. Understanding of the importance of the spore coat structure and pigmentation in the Bacillus subtilis spore resistance to low-pressure plasma sterilization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raguse, Marina; Fiebrandt, Marcel; Denis, Benjamin; Stapelmann, Katharina; Eichenberger, Patrick; Driks, Adam; Eaton, Peter; Awakowicz, Peter; Moeller, Ralf

    2016-07-01

    Low-pressure plasmas have been evaluated for their potential in biomedical and defense purposes. The sterilizing effect of plasma can be attributed to several active agents, including (V)UV radiation, charged particles, radical species, neutral and excited atoms and molecules, and the electric field. Spores of Bacillus subtilis were used as a bioindicator and a genetic model system to study the sporicidal effects of low-pressure plasma decontamination. Wild-type spores, spores lacking the major protective coat layers (inner, outer, and crust), pigmentation-deficient spores or spore impaired in encasement (a late step in coat assembly) were systematically tested for their resistance to low-pressure argon, hydrogen, and oxygen plasmas with and without admixtures. We demonstrate that low-pressure plasma discharges of argon and oxygen discharges cause significant physical damage to spore surface structures as visualized by atomic force microscopy. Spore resistance to low-pressure plasma was primarily dependent on the presence of the inner, and outer spore coat layers as well as spore encasement, with minor or less importance of the crust and spore pigmentation, whereas spore inactivation itself was strongly influenced by the gas composition and operational settings.

  2. Daily variations of Alternaria spores in the city of Murcia (semi-arid southeastern Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munuera Giner, M.; Carrión García, J. S.

    1995-12-01

    Annual variations in the abundance of Alternaria spores were related to the length of the spore period for data from Murcia (southeastern Spain). To understand the relationship between the number of spores and climatic factors, Alternaria spore counts for March 1993 to February 1994 were examined by means of correlation and regression analyses with fourteen different weather parameters. The results indicated that there was a tendency for Alternaria spore concentrations to increase with increases in temperature, wind speed and hours of sunshine. Negative correlations were observed with air pressure, wind direction and humidity. Theoretical curves for Alternaria spore counts are given in relation to temperatures during the period studied.

  3. Use of fatty acid methyl ester profiles for discrimination of Bacillus cereus T-strain spores grown on different media.

    PubMed

    Ehrhardt, Christopher J; Chu, Vivian; Brown, TeeCie; Simmons, Terrie L; Swan, Brandon K; Bannan, Jason; Robertson, James M

    2010-03-01

    The goal of this study was to determine if cellular fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) profiling could be used to distinguish among spore samples from a single species (Bacillus cereus T strain) that were prepared on 10 different medium formulations. To analyze profile differences and identify FAME biomarkers diagnostic for the chemical constituents in each sporulation medium, a variety of statistical techniques were used, including nonmetric multidimensional scaling (nMDS), analysis of similarities (ANOSIM), and discriminant function analysis (DFA). The results showed that one FAME biomarker, oleic acid (18:1 omega9c), was exclusively associated with spores grown on Columbia agar supplemented with sheep blood and was indicative of blood supplements that were present in the sporulation medium. For spores grown in other formulations, multivariate comparisons across several FAME biomarkers were required to discern profile differences. Clustering patterns in nMDS plots and R values from ANOSIM revealed that dissimilarities among FAME profiles were most pronounced when spores grown with disparate sources of complex additives or protein supplements were compared (R > 0.8), although other factors also contributed to FAME differences. DFA indicated that differentiation could be maximized with a targeted subset of FAME variables, and the relative contributions of branched FAME biomarkers to group dissimilarities changed when different media were compared. When taken together, these analyses indicate that B. cereus spore samples grown in different media can be resolved with FAME profiling and that this may be a useful technique for providing intelligence about the production methods of Bacillus organisms in a forensic investigation. PMID:20097814

  4. Use of Fatty Acid Methyl Ester Profiles for Discrimination of Bacillus cereus T-Strain Spores Grown on Different Media▿

    PubMed Central

    Ehrhardt, Christopher J.; Chu, Vivian; Brown, TeeCie; Simmons, Terrie L.; Swan, Brandon K.; Bannan, Jason; Robertson, James M.

    2010-01-01

    The goal of this study was to determine if cellular fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) profiling could be used to distinguish among spore samples from a single species (Bacillus cereus T strain) that were prepared on 10 different medium formulations. To analyze profile differences and identify FAME biomarkers diagnostic for the chemical constituents in each sporulation medium, a variety of statistical techniques were used, including nonmetric multidimensional scaling (nMDS), analysis of similarities (ANOSIM), and discriminant function analysis (DFA). The results showed that one FAME biomarker, oleic acid (18:1 ω9c), was exclusively associated with spores grown on Columbia agar supplemented with sheep blood and was indicative of blood supplements that were present in the sporulation medium. For spores grown in other formulations, multivariate comparisons across several FAME biomarkers were required to discern profile differences. Clustering patterns in nMDS plots and R values from ANOSIM revealed that dissimilarities among FAME profiles were most pronounced when spores grown with disparate sources of complex additives or protein supplements were compared (R > 0.8), although other factors also contributed to FAME differences. DFA indicated that differentiation could be maximized with a targeted subset of FAME variables, and the relative contributions of branched FAME biomarkers to group dissimilarities changed when different media were compared. When taken together, these analyses indicate that B. cereus spore samples grown in different media can be resolved with FAME profiling and that this may be a useful technique for providing intelligence about the production methods of Bacillus organisms in a forensic investigation. PMID:20097814

  5. Cytology of Spore Formation in Clostridium perfringens1

    PubMed Central

    Hoeniger, Judith F. M.; Stuart, Philip F.; Holt, Stanley C.

    1968-01-01

    The sequential morphological events in spore formation by Clostridium perfringens type D were observed in Ellner's medium where 80 to 100% of the cells formed spores. Gross structural changes were studied with the light microscope under phase-contrast, and in fixed cells by the use of both nigrosin and Giemsa preparations. Fine structure was examined with the electron microscope in both thin sections and frozen-etched preparations. During the first 3 hr of incubation, the original rod-shaped cells became ellipsoid to ovoid in shape; by 5 to 6 hr, subterminal spores had developed within these enlarged cells. The fine structural sequence was in most respects identical to that in other Bacillaceae, although some stages were illustrated with particular clarity. A unique feature was the development of a convoluted, membranous exosporium which adhered to the outer surface of the two coats and had an unusual fine structure resembling a rectangular array of subunits. Images PMID:4302300

  6. Evolutionary stasis of sporopollenin biochemistry revealed by unaltered Pennsylvanian spores.

    PubMed

    Fraser, W T; Scott, A C; Forbes, A E S; Glasspool, I J; Plotnick, R E; Kenig, F; Lomax, B H

    2012-10-01

    The biopolymer sporopollenin present in the spore/pollen walls of all land plants is regarded as one of the most recalcitrant biomacromolecules (biopolymers), providing protection against a range of abiotic stresses. This long-term stability is demonstrated by the near-ubiquitous presence of pollen and spores in the fossil record with spores providing the first evidence for the colonization of the land. Here, we report for the first time chemical analyses of geologically unaltered sporopollenin from Pennsylvanian (c. 310 million yr before present (MyBP)) cave deposits. Our data show that Pennsylvanian Lycophyta megaspore sporopollenin has a strong chemical resemblance to extant relatives and indicates that a co-polymer model of sporopollenin formation is the most likely configuration. Broader comparison indicates that extant sporopollenin structure is similar across widely spaced phylogenetic groups and suggests land plant sporopollenin structure has remained stable since embryophytes invaded land. PMID:22913758

  7. Differentiating bacterial spores from hoax materials by Raman spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farquharson, Stuart; Smith, Wayne W.

    2004-03-01

    The bioterrorism of October 2001 caused by the distribution of anthrax through the U.S. postal system was compounded by the significant delay associated with positive identification of the Bacillus anthracis spores and the unknown extent of their distribution along the eastern seaboard. In the ensuing two years, literally thousands of hoaxes, letters containing harmless powders, have been mailed creating additional anxiety. Thus, there is a need for instruments and/or methods that can not only identify anthrax-causing spores to save lives, but also identify hoax materials to eliminate costly shutdowns. Here we present Raman spectra of Bacillus cereus spores, an anthrax surrogate, as well as of 30 common substances that might be used as hoax materials. We also examine the choice of laser excitation, 785 nm or 1064 nm, and its impact on the ability to measure visible particles in 5 minutes or less, and to provide a complete answer to the question of suspicious material identity.

  8. Adenosine Monophosphate-Based Detection of Bacterial Spores

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kern, Roger G.; Chen, Fei; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri; Hattori, Nori; Suzuki, Shigeya

    2009-01-01

    A method of rapid detection of bacterial spores is based on the discovery that a heat shock consisting of exposure to a temperature of 100 C for 10 minutes causes the complete release of adenosine monophosphate (AMP) from the spores. This method could be an alternative to the method described in the immediately preceding article. Unlike that method and related prior methods, the present method does not involve germination and cultivation; this feature is an important advantage because in cases in which the spores are those of pathogens, delays involved in germination and cultivation could increase risks of infection. Also, in comparison with other prior methods that do not involve germination, the present method affords greater sensitivity. At present, the method is embodied in a laboratory procedure, though it would be desirable to implement the method by means of a miniaturized apparatus in order to make it convenient and economical enough to encourage widespread use.

  9. Plasma effects on bacterial spores in a wet environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuo, Spencer P.; Tarasenko, Olga; Nourkbash, Said; Bakhtina, Assya; Levon, Kalle

    2006-03-01

    An arc-seed microwave plasma torch, which can run stably at low airflow rate (e.g., 0.393 l s-1) and produces an abundance of reactive atomic oxygen in its plasma effluent, is applied for studying the effects of atomic oxygen on bacterial spores in solution. Bacillus cereus was chosen as the biological agent. The experimental results show that the plasma effluent can penetrate into water to kill B. cereus spores. The kill time (i.e., 10-fold reduction time) is about 10 s at an exposure distance of 3 cm, 24 s at 4 cm, and 31 s at 5 cm. Morphological studies are performed via scanning electron and atomic force microscopes, which take two- and three-dimensional images of spores to record the changes in their morphological structures and shapes caused by the plasma effluent. The loss of appendages and exosporium in the structure as well as flattened cell shapes are observed.

  10. Spore Yield and Microcycle Conidiation of Colletotrichum gloeosporioides in Liquid Culture

    PubMed Central

    Cascino, J. J.; Harris, R. F.; Smith, C. S.; Andrews, J. H.

    1990-01-01

    The effect of V8 juice concentration (5 to 40%, vol/vol), spore inoculum density (105 and 107 spores per ml), and liquid batch or fed-batch culture condition on mycelium and spore production by Colletotrichum gloeosporioides was evaluated. The amount of mycelium produced, the time required for initiation of sporulation following attainment of maximum mycelium, and the time for attainment of maximum spore concentration increased with increasing V8 juice concentration in batch culture. Cultures containing V8 juice at >10% achieved a similar spore density (apparent spore-carrying capacity) of about 0.8 mg of spores per ml (1 × 107 to 2 × 107 spores per ml) independent of inoculum density and V8 juice concentration. The relative spore yield decreased from a high of 64% of the total biomass for the low-inoculum 5% V8 culture, through 13% for the analogous 40% V8 culture, to a low of 2% for the high-inoculum 27% V8 culture. Fed-batch cultures were used to establish conditions of high spore density and low substrate availability but high substrate flux. The rate of addition of V8 juice was adjusted to approximate the rate of substrate utilization by the (increasing) biomass. The final spore concentration was about four times higher (3.0 mg of spores per ml) than the apparent spore-carrying capacity in batch culture. This high spore yield was obtained at the expense of greatly reduced mycelium, resulting in a high relative spore yield (62% of the total biomass). Microcycle conidiation occurred in the fed-batch but not batch systems. These data indicate that substrate-limited, fed-batch culture can be used to increase the amount and efficiency of spore production by C. gloeosporioides by maintaining microcycle conidiation conditions favoring allocation of nutrients to spore rather than mycelium production. PMID:16348245

  11. Protection of mice against challenge with Bacillus anthracis STI spores after DNA vaccination.

    PubMed

    Hahn, Ulrike K; Alex, Michaela; Czerny, Claus-Peter; Böhm, Reinhard; Beyer, Wolfgang

    2004-07-01

    Immune responses against the protective antigen (PA) of Bacillus anthracis are known to confer immunity against anthrax. We evaluated the efficacy of genetic vaccination with plasmid vectors encoding PA, in protecting mice from a lethal challenge with B. anthracis STI spores. BALB/c and A/J mice were immunized via gene gun inoculation, using eukaryotic expression vectors with different cellular targeting signals for the encoded antigen. The vector pSecTag PA83, encoding the full-length PA protein, has a signal sequence for secretion of the expressed protein. The plasmids pCMV/ER PA83 and pCMV/ER PA63, encoding the full-length and the physiologically active form of PA, respectively, target and retain the expressed antigen in the endoplasmic reticulum of transfected cells. All three plasmids induced PA-specific humoral immune responses, predominantly IgG1 antibodies, in mice. Spleen cells collected from plasmid-vaccinated BALB/c mice produced PA-specific interleukin-4, interleukin-5, and interferon-gamma in vitro. Vaccination with either pSecTag PA83 or pCMV/ER PA83 showed significant protection of A/J mice against infection with B. anthracis STI spores. PMID:15293452

  12. [A study of the efficacy of disinfectants against anthrax spores].

    PubMed

    Lensing, H H; Oei, H L

    1984-07-01

    The activity of disinfectants with regard to spores of Bacillus anthracis was determined in a suspension test. Creoline (10%) and also several other disinfectants for veterinary use showed no activity against spores of B. anthracis. Natriumdichloorisocyanuraat-dihydrate (2400 ppm active chlorine) and peracetic acid 0,25% demonstrated after 30 minutes of exposures at 20 degrees C in the presence of 4% horse serum a significant sporicidal effect. Under the same conditions formaldehyde 4% and glutaraldehyde 2% were also found to be sporicidal but only after 2 hours of exposure. PMID:6431631

  13. Discrimination of Spore-Forming Bacilli Using spoIVA

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Venkateswaran, Kasthuri; LaDuc, Myron; Stuecker, Tara

    2009-01-01

    A method of discriminating between spore-forming and non-spore-forming bacteria is based on a combination of simultaneous sporulation-specific and non-sporulation-specific quantitative polymerase chain reactions (Q-PCRs). The method was invented partly in response to the observation that for the purposes of preventing or reducing biological contamination affecting many human endeavors, ultimately, only the spore-forming portions of bacterial populations are the ones that are problematic (or, at least, more problematic than are the non-spore-forming portions). In some environments, spore-forming bacteria constitute small fractions of the total bacterial populations. The use of sporulation-specific primers in Q-PCR affords the ability to assess the spore-forming fraction of a bacterial population present in an environment of interest. This assessment can provide a more thorough and accurate understanding of the bacterial contamination in the environment, thereby making it possible to focus contamination- testing, contamination-prevention, sterilization, and decontamination resources more economically and efficiently. The method includes the use of sporulation-specific primers in the form of designed, optimized deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) oligonucleotides specific for the bacterial spoIVA gene (see table). [In "spoIVA," "IV" signifies Roman numeral four and the entire quoted name refers to gene A for the fourth stage of sporulation.] These primers are mixed into a PCR cocktail with a given sample of bacterial cells. A control PCR cocktail into which are mixed universal 16S rRNA primers is also prepared. ["16S rRNA" denotes a ribosomal ribonucleic acid (rRNA) sequence that is common to all organisms.] Following several cycles of heating and cooling according to the PCR protocol to amplify amounts of DNA molecules, the amplification products can be analyzed to determine the types of bacterial cells present within the samples. If the amplification product is strong

  14. Effect of synthetic detergents on germination of fern spores

    SciTech Connect

    Devi, Y.; Devi, S.

    1986-12-01

    Synthetic detergents constitute one of the most important water pollutants by contaminating the lakes and rivers through domestic and industrial use. Considerable information is now available for the adverse effects of detergents an aquatic fauna including fish, algae, and higher aquatic plants. Marked inhibition of germination in orchids and brinjals and of seedlings growth in raddish suggest that rapidly growing systems could be sensitive to detergent polluted water. The present study of the effect of linear alkyl benzene sulphonate on germination of the spores of a fern, Diplazium esculentum aims at the understanding of the effects of water pollution on pteridophytes and the development of spore germination assay for phytoxicity evaluation.

  15. Decontamination of Anthrax spores in critical infrastructure and critical assets.

    SciTech Connect

    Boucher, Raymond M.; Crown, Kevin K.; Tucker, Mark David; Hankins, Matthew Granholm

    2010-05-01

    Decontamination of anthrax spores in critical infrastructure (e.g., subway systems, major airports) and critical assets (e.g., the interior of aircraft) can be challenging because effective decontaminants can damage materials. Current decontamination methods require the use of highly toxic and/or highly corrosive chemical solutions because bacterial spores are very difficult to kill. Bacterial spores such as Bacillus anthracis, the infectious agent of anthrax, are one of the most resistant forms of life and are several orders of magnitude more difficult to kill than their associated vegetative cells. Remediation of facilities and other spaces (e.g., subways, airports, and the interior of aircraft) contaminated with anthrax spores currently requires highly toxic and corrosive chemicals such as chlorine dioxide gas, vapor- phase hydrogen peroxide, or high-strength bleach, typically requiring complex deployment methods. We have developed a non-toxic, non-corrosive decontamination method to kill highly resistant bacterial spores in critical infrastructure and critical assets. A chemical solution that triggers the germination process in bacterial spores and causes those spores to rapidly and completely change to much less-resistant vegetative cells that can be easily killed. Vegetative cells are then exposed to mild chemicals (e.g., low concentrations of hydrogen peroxide, quaternary ammonium compounds, alcohols, aldehydes, etc.) or natural elements (e.g., heat, humidity, ultraviolet light, etc.) for complete and rapid kill. Our process employs a novel germination solution consisting of low-cost, non-toxic and non-corrosive chemicals. We are testing both direct surface application and aerosol delivery of the solutions. A key Homeland Security need is to develop the capability to rapidly recover from an attack utilizing biological warfare agents. This project will provide the capability to rapidly and safely decontaminate critical facilities and assets to return them to

  16. Atmospheric transport of mold spores in clouds of desert dust

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Shinn, E.A.; Griffin, Dale W.; Seba, D.B.

    2003-01-01

    Fungal spores can be transported globally in clouds of desert dust. Many species of fungi (commonly known as molds) and bacteria--including some that are human pathogens--have characteristics suited to long-range atmospheric transport. Dust from the African desert can affect air quality in Africa, Europe, the Middle East, and the Americas. Asian desert dust can affect air quality in Asia, the Arctic, North America, and Europe. Atmospheric exposure to mold-carrying desert dust may affect human health directly through allergic induction of respiratory stress. In addition, mold spores within these dust clouds may seed downwind ecosystems in both outdoor and indoor environments.

  17. [The flotation characteristics of Bacillus cells and spores].

    PubMed

    Stabnikova, E V; Gregirchak, N N; Taranenko, T O

    1991-01-01

    Variations in hydrophobicity of the surface of bacillary cells and their capacity to flotation in the process of batch cultivation have been studied. It is shown that hydrophobicity of the cell surface increases in the course of batch cultivation of Bacillus thuringiensis, B. licheniformis and B. megaterium. Hydrophobicity of spores of the mentioned cultures is considerably higher than that of the vegetative cells. The increase of hydrophobicity of bacillary cells positively correlated with their capacity to flotation. That is why the use of flotation for the age fractionation of bacillary cells is possible: spores are concentrated in the foam while vegetative cells remain in the culture liquid. PMID:1779906

  18. The Fungal Spores Survival Under the Low-Temperature Plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Soušková, Hana; Scholtz, V.; Julák, J.; Savická, D.

    This paper presents an experimental apparatus for the decontamination and sterilization of water suspension of fungal spores. The fungicidal effect of stabilized positive and negative corona discharges on four fungal species Aspergillus oryzae, Clacosporium sphaerospermum, Penicillium crustosum and Alternaria sp. was studied. Simultaneously, the slower growing of exposed fungal spores was observed. The obtained results are substantially different in comparison with those of the analogous experiments performed with bacteria. It may be concluded that fungi are more resistant to the low-temperature plasma.

  19. Proton dynamics in bacterial spores, a neutron scattering investigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Colas de la Noue, Alexandre; Peters, Judith; Gervais, Patrick; Martinez, Nicolas; Perrier-Cornet, Jean-Marie; Natali, Francesca

    2015-01-01

    Results from first neutron scattering experiments on bacterial spores are reported. The elastic intensities and mean square displacements have a non-linear behaviour as function of temperature, which is in agreement with a model presenting more pronounced variations at around 330 K (57 ∘C) and 400 K (127 ∘C). Based on the available literature on thermal properties of bacterial spores, mainly referring to differential scanning calorimetry, they are suggested to be associated to main endothermic transitions induced by coat and/or core bacterial response to heat treatment.

  20. FORMALDEHYDE GAS INACTIVATION OF BACILLUS ANTHRACIS, BACILLUS SUBTILIS AND GEOBACILLUS STEAROTHERMOPHILUS SPORES ON INDOOR SURFACE MATERIALS.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Research evaluated the decontamination of Bacillus anthracis, Bacillus subtilis, and Geobacillus stearothermophilus spores on indoor surface material using formaldehyde gas. Spores were dried on seven types of indoor surfaces and exposed to 1100 ppm formaldehyde gas for 10 hr. Fo...

  1. Comparative dose-survival curves of representative Clostridium botulinum type F spores with type A and B spores.

    PubMed Central

    Anellis, A; Berkowitz, D

    1977-01-01

    Radiation survival data of proteolytic (Walls 8G-F) and non-proteolytic (Eklund 83F) type F spores of Clostridium botulinum were compared with dose-response data of radiation-resistant type A (33A) and B (40B) spores. Strain Eklund 83F was as resistant as strain 33A, whereas strain Walls 8G-F was the most sensitive of the four strains tested. The methods suggested for computing both an initial shoulder and a D value for the dose-survival curves yielded results comparable to the graphic techniques used to obtain these two parameters. PMID:337901

  2. Comparative dose-survival curves of representative Clostridium botulinum type F spores with type A and B spores.

    PubMed

    Anellis, A; Berkowitz, D

    1977-11-01

    Radiation survival data of proteolytic (Walls 8G-F) and non-proteolytic (Eklund 83F) type F spores of Clostridium botulinum were compared with dose-response data of radiation-resistant type A (33A) and B (40B) spores. Strain Eklund 83F was as resistant as strain 33A, whereas strain Walls 8G-F was the most sensitive of the four strains tested. The methods suggested for computing both an initial shoulder and a D value for the dose-survival curves yielded results comparable to the graphic techniques used to obtain these two parameters. PMID:337901

  3. Water and Small-Molecule Permeation of Dormant Bacillus subtilis Spores

    PubMed Central

    Cermak, Nathan; Feijó Delgado, Francisco; Setlow, Barbara; Setlow, Peter

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT We use a suspended microchannel resonator to characterize the water and small-molecule permeability of Bacillus subtilis spores based on spores' buoyant mass in different solutions. Consistent with previous results, we found that the spore coat is not a significant barrier to small molecules, and the extent to which small molecules may enter the spore is size dependent. We have developed a method to directly observe the exchange kinetics of intraspore water with deuterium oxide, and we applied this method to wild-type spores and a panel of congenic mutants with deficiencies in the assembly or structure of the coat. Compared to wild-type spores, which exchange in approximately 1 s, several coat mutant spores were found to have relatively high water permeability with exchange times below the ∼200-ms temporal resolution of our assay. In addition, we found that the water permeability of the spore correlates with the ability of spores to germinate with dodecylamine and with the ability of TbCl3 to inhibit germination with l-valine. These results suggest that the structure of the coat may be necessary for maintaining low water permeability. IMPORTANCE Spores of Bacillus species cause food spoilage and disease and are extremely resistant to standard decontamination methods. This hardiness is partly due to spores' extremely low permeability to chemicals, including water. We present a method to directly monitor the uptake of molecules into B. subtilis spores by weighing spores in fluid. The results demonstrate the exchange of core water with subsecond resolution and show a correlation between water permeability and the rate at which small molecules can initiate or inhibit germination in coat-damaged spores. The ability to directly measure the uptake of molecules in the context of spores with known structural or genetic deficiencies is expected to provide insight into the determinants of spores' extreme resistance. PMID:26483518

  4. Tuber melosporum smooth spores: an anomalous feature in the genus Tuber.

    PubMed

    Lancellotti, Enrico; Fantini, Paolo; Iotti, Mirco; Franceschini, Antonio; Zambonelli, Alessandra

    2016-01-01

    This paper adds new insights on ecology and micromorphology of Tuber melosporum, a rare species with smooth spores. Eight T. melosporum ascomata collected in a 50 y old Pinus halepensis and Quercus ilex plantation in Sardinia, Italy, represent the first recovery of this species outside Spain. In comparison to the T. melosporum holotype, Italian specimens revealed differences in the number of spores in asci and spore shape. We propose an emended description of Tuber to include species without spore ornamentation. PMID:26490704

  5. Taphonomic bias in pollen and spore record: a review

    SciTech Connect

    Fisk, L.H.

    1986-05-01

    The high dispersibility and ease of pollen and spore transport have led researchers to conclude erroneously that fossil pollen and spore floras are relatively complete and record unbiased representations of the regional vegetation extant at the time of sediment deposition. That such conclusions are unjustified is obvious when the authors remember that polynomorphs are merely organic sedimentary particles and undergo hydraulic sorting not unlike clastic sedimentary particles. Prior to deposition in the fossil record, pollen and spores can be hydraulically sorted by size, shape, and weight, subtly biasing relative frequencies in fossil assemblages. Sorting during transport results in palynofloras whose composition is environmentally dependent. Therefore, depositional environment is an important consideration to make correct inferences on the source vegetation. Sediment particle size of original rock samples may contain important information on the probability of a taphonomically biased pollen and spore assemblage. In addition, a reasonable test of hydraulic sorting is the distribution of pollen grain sizes and shapes in each assemblage. Any assemblage containing a wide spectrum of grain sizes and shapes has obviously not undergone significant sorting. If unrecognized, taphonomic bias can lead to paleoecologic, paleoclimatic, and even biostratigraphic misinterpretations.

  6. Isolation of the Paenibacillus phoenicis, a Spore-Forming Bacterium

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Benardini, James N.; Vaishampayan, Parag A.; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri J.; Osman, Shariff; Satomi, Masataka

    2010-01-01

    A microorganism was isolated from the surfaces of the cleanroom facility in which the Phoenix lander was assembled. The isolated bacterial strain was subjected to a comprehensive polyphasic analysis to characterize its taxonomic position. Both phenotypic and phylogenetic analyses clearly indicate that this isolate belongs to the genus Paenibacillus and represents a novel species. Bacillus spores have been utilized to assess the degree and level of microbiological contamination on spacecraft and their associated spacecraft assembly facilities. Spores of Bacillus species are of particular concern to planetary protection due to the extreme resistance of some members of the genus to space environmental conditions such as UV and gamma radiation, vacuum, oxidation, and temperature fluctuation. These resistive spore phenotypes have enhanced potential for transfer, and subsequent proliferation, of terrestrial microbes on another solar body. Due to decreased nutrient conditions within spacecraft assembly facility clean rooms, the vegetative cells of Bacillus species and other spore-forming Paenibacillus species are induced to sporulate, thereby enhancing their survivability of bioreduction

  7. Two ways fungal spores can affect cotton color

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    For a long time, we have observed that cotton can undergo color change when moisture conditions of the cotton sample would not be expected to support bacterial activity which normally requires free water. Several fungi can grow under low moisture pressures. It has been speculated that the spores p...

  8. 9 CFR 113.66 - Anthrax Spore Vaccine-Nonencapsulated.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... in 9 CFR 113.64 and the requirements in this paragraph. Any serial or subserial found unsatisfactory... serial or first subserial shall be tested for safety in sheep or goats by the methods described in 9 CFR... 9 Animals and Animal Products 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Anthrax Spore...

  9. 9 CFR 113.66 - Anthrax Spore Vaccine-Nonencapsulated.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... in 9 CFR 113.64 and the requirements in this paragraph. Any serial or subserial found unsatisfactory... serial or first subserial shall be tested for safety in sheep or goats by the methods described in 9 CFR... 9 Animals and Animal Products 1 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Anthrax Spore...

  10. 9 CFR 113.66 - Anthrax Spore Vaccine-Nonencapsulated.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... in 9 CFR 113.64 and the requirements in this paragraph. Any serial or subserial found unsatisfactory... serial or first subserial shall be tested for safety in sheep or goats by the methods described in 9 CFR... 9 Animals and Animal Products 1 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Anthrax Spore...

  11. 9 CFR 113.66 - Anthrax Spore Vaccine-Nonencapsulated.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... in 9 CFR 113.64 and the requirements in this paragraph. Any serial or subserial found unsatisfactory... serial or first subserial shall be tested for safety in sheep or goats by the methods described in 9 CFR... 9 Animals and Animal Products 1 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Anthrax Spore...

  12. 9 CFR 113.66 - Anthrax Spore Vaccine-Nonencapsulated.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... in 9 CFR 113.64 and the requirements in this paragraph. Any serial or subserial found unsatisfactory... serial or first subserial shall be tested for safety in sheep or goats by the methods described in 9 CFR... 9 Animals and Animal Products 1 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Anthrax Spore...

  13. Stenocybe fragmenta, a new species of Mycocaliciaceae with fragmenting spores

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Peterson, E.B.; Rikkinen, Jouko

    1998-01-01

    The new species Stenocybe fragmenta (Ascomycota, Mycocaliciaceae) is described from western North America. The species was collected from twigs of Cercocarpus montanus and Rhamnus purshiana. Stenocybe fragmenta is characterized by 5-7 septate, 18-30 I?m long ascospores that fragment at maturity. This is the first report of spore fragmentation among the Mycocaliciaceae.

  14. Allergenic airborne pollen and spores in Anchorage, Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, J.H.

    1985-05-01

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

  15. Multigeneration Cross-Contamination of Mail with Bacillus anthracis Spores

    PubMed Central

    Edmonds, Jason; Lindquist, H. D. Alan; Sabol, Jonathan; Martinez, Kenneth; Shadomy, Sean; Cymet, Tyler; Emanuel, Peter

    2016-01-01

    The release of biological agents, including those which could be used in biowarfare or bioterrorism in large urban areas, has been a concern for governments for nearly three decades. Previous incidents from Sverdlosk and the postal anthrax attack of 2001 have raised questions on the mechanism of spread of Bacillus anthracis spores as an aerosol or contaminant. Prior studies have demonstrated that Bacillus atrophaeus is easily transferred through simulated mail handing, but no reports have demonstrated this ability with Bacillus anthracis spores, which have morphological differences that may affect adhesion properties between spore and formite. In this study, equipment developed to simulate interactions across three generations of envelopes subjected to tumbling and mixing was used to evaluate the potential for cross-contamination of B. anthracis spores in simulated mail handling. In these experiments, we found that the potential for cross-contamination through letter tumbling from one generation to the next varied between generations while the presence of a fluidizer had no statistical impact on the transfer of material. Likewise, the presence or absence of a fluidizer had no statistically significant impact on cross-contamination levels or reaerosolization from letter opening. PMID:27123934

  16. Adhesion of Spores of Bacillus thuringiensis on a Planar Surface

    SciTech Connect

    Chung, Eunhyea; Kweon, Hyojin; Yiacoumi, Sotira; Lee, Ida; Joy, David Charles; Palumbo, Anthony Vito; Tsouris, Costas

    2010-01-01

    Adhesion of spores of Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) and spherical silica particles on surfaces was experimentally and theoretically investigated in this study. Topography analysis via atomic force microscopy (AFM) and electron microscopy indicates that Bt spores are rod shaped, {approx}1.3 {mu}m in length and {approx}0.8 {mu}m in diameter. The adhesion force of Bt spores and silica particles on gold-coated glass was measured at various relative humidity (RH) levels by AFM. It was expected that the adhesion force would vary with RH because the individual force components contributing to the adhesion force depend on RH. The adhesion force between a particle and a planar surface in atmospheric environments was modeled as the contribution of three major force components: capillary, van der Waals, and electrostatic interaction forces. Adhesion force measurements for Bt spore (silica particle) and the gold surface system were comparable with calculations. Modeling results show that there is a critical RH value, which depends on the hydrophobicity of the materials involved, below which the water meniscus does not form and the contribution of the capillary force is zero. As RH increases, the van der Waals force decreases while the capillary force increases to a maximum value.

  17. Evaluation of tools for environmental sampling of Bacillus anthracis spores.

    PubMed

    Fujinami, Yoshihito; Hosokawa-Muto, Junji; Mizuno, Natsuko

    2015-12-01

    This study describes the validation of sampling techniques used to detect biological warfare agents used in terror attacks. For this purpose, we tested the efficiencies of different sampling media and extraction solutions for the recovery of bacterial pathogens. We first used Bacillus cereus ATCC 4342 spores as a surrogate for highly pathogenic B. anthracis to compare recovery efficiencies of spores from four different surfaces. We used three different types of sampling swabs and four different solutions to extract spores from the swabs. The most effective sampling method employed rayon swabs moistened with water. The efficencies of the four extraction solutions did not differ significantly, although yields were highest using phosphate-buffered saline containing Tween 80 (PBS-T). Using rayon swabs and sterile water, we recovered B. cereus ATCC 4342 and B. anthracis spores with equivalent efficiencies. These findings indicate that because of its reduced pathogenicity and relative ease in handling (Biosafety Level 1), use of B. cereus ATCC 4342 will facilitate further optimization of techniques to detect B. anthracis. PMID:26528669

  18. Multigeneration Cross-Contamination of Mail with Bacillus anthracis Spores.

    PubMed

    Edmonds, Jason; Lindquist, H D Alan; Sabol, Jonathan; Martinez, Kenneth; Shadomy, Sean; Cymet, Tyler; Emanuel, Peter

    2016-01-01

    The release of biological agents, including those which could be used in biowarfare or bioterrorism in large urban areas, has been a concern for governments for nearly three decades. Previous incidents from Sverdlosk and the postal anthrax attack of 2001 have raised questions on the mechanism of spread of Bacillus anthracis spores as an aerosol or contaminant. Prior studies have demonstrated that Bacillus atrophaeus is easily transferred through simulated mail handing, but no reports have demonstrated this ability with Bacillus anthracis spores, which have morphological differences that may affect adhesion properties between spore and formite. In this study, equipment developed to simulate interactions across three generations of envelopes subjected to tumbling and mixing was used to evaluate the potential for cross-contamination of B. anthracis spores in simulated mail handling. In these experiments, we found that the potential for cross-contamination through letter tumbling from one generation to the next varied between generations while the presence of a fluidizer had no statistical impact on the transfer of material. Likewise, the presence or absence of a fluidizer had no statistically significant impact on cross-contamination levels or reaerosolization from letter opening. PMID:27123934

  19. Effect of Phenol on Bacillus subtilis Spores at Elevated Temperatures

    PubMed Central

    Russell, A. D.; Loosemore, Muriel

    1964-01-01

    The nature of the recovery medium is shown to influence the number of Bacillus subtilis spores which, after exposure to 2.5 or 5% phenol at high temperatures, can produce a visible colony. Higher survivor counts were obtained in nutrient agar containing L-alanine and D-glucose than in plain nutrient agar. PMID:14215968

  20. Effect of temperature on green spore longevity for the ferns Equisetum ramosissimum and Osmunda regalis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Some fern species produce chlorophyllic or green spores. Green spores lose viability quickly compared to nongreen spores, and so need specialized treatment for long term conservation in germplasm banks. Dry storage at different temperatures (25 ºC, 4 ºC, -25 ºC, -80 ºC and -196 ºC) was studied in ...

  1. Detection of Low Numbers of Phakopsora pachyrhizi Spores by Quantitative Real-Time PCR

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    One important aspect of an early detection and monitoring system for soybean rust is the reliability of detection of low spore numbers from traps. Microscopic examination of slides is time-consuming, and may provide inaccurate results due to look-alike spores (spores of a similar size, morphology, ...

  2. Quantitative Analysis of Spatial-Temporal Correlations during Germination of Spores of Bacillus Species ▿

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jinqiao; Garner, Will; Setlow, Peter; Yu, Ji

    2011-01-01

    Bacteria of Bacillus species sporulate upon starvation, and the resultant dormant spores germinate when the environment appears likely to allow the resumption of vegetative growth. Normally, the rates of germination of individual spores in populations are very heterogeneous, and the current work has investigated whether spore-to-spore communication enhances the synchronicity of germination. In order to do this work, time-lapse optical images of thousands of individual spores were captured during germination, and an image analysis algorithm was developed to do the following: (i) measure the positions and germination rates of many thousands of individual spores and (ii) compute pairwise correlations of their germination. This analysis showed that an individual spore's germination rate was dependent on its distance from other spores, especially at short distances. Thus, spores that were within a few micrometers exhibited an increased synchronicity in germination, suggesting that there is a mechanism for short-range communication between such spores during germination. However, two molecules known to be germinants that are released during germination, l-alanine and the 1:1 chelate of Ca2+ and dipicolinic acid, did not mediate spore-to-spore communication during germination. PMID:21622756

  3. FACTORS RELATING TO THE RELEASE OF STACHYBOTRYS CHARTARUM SPORES FROM CONTAMINATED SOURCES

    EPA Science Inventory

    The paper describes preliminary results of a research project to determine the factors that control the release of S. chartarum spores from a contaminated source and test ways to reduce spore release and thus exposure. As anticipated, S. chartarum spore emissions from gypsum boar...

  4. The Ice Nucleation Ability of Selected Atmospherically Abundant Fungal Spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iannone, R.; Chernoff, D. I.; Bertram, A. K.

    2010-12-01

    Ice clouds are widely recognized for their roles in the earth’s radiation budget and climate systems. However, their formation mechanisms are poorly understood thus constituting an uncertainty in the evaluation of the global radiation budget. An important mechanism of ice cloud formation is heterogeneous nucleation on aerosol particles. The surface properties of these particles, called ice nuclei (IN), directly affect the temperature at which ice nucleation occurs. There is a growing emphasis on the study of bioaerosols (e.g., bacteria, fungi, pollen) as IN since they are ubiquitous in the atmosphere. The focus of the current study is to determine the ice nucleation properties of spores obtained from a variety of fungi. Aerosolized spores were impacted onto a hydrophobic glass substrate and immersed in ultrapure water. A technique involving an optical light microscope coupled to a flow cell was used to precisely control temperature and humidity within the cell. A digital camera captured high-resolution video of the particles undergoing ice nucleation, allowing for the analyses of freezing events and particle sizes. The first experimental results using spores obtained from the fungal genera Cladosporium and Penicillium reveal an average temperature increase of ~1-5 K in the ice nucleation temperature compared to homogeneous nucleation (i.e., freezing of pure liquid water). Furthermore, there appears to be a relationship between the amount of spores present per droplet and the freezing temperature of water. These results are presented and discussed, and the potential contribution of these data to further the understanding of heterogeneous nucleation in the atmosphere is provided. Box plot summarizing freezing data for homogeneous nucleation experiments (leftmost box) and binned data from heterogeneous nucleation experiments involving spores of Cladosporium. Freezing data are distributed into 200 µm2 bins that represent the total area of all observable inclusions

  5. NanoSIMS analysis of Bacillus spores for forensics

    SciTech Connect

    Weber, P K; Davisson, M L; Velsko, S P

    2010-02-23

    The threat associated with the potential use of radiological, nuclear, chemical and biological materials in terrorist acts has resulted in new fields of forensic science requiring the application of state-of-the-science analytical techniques. Since the anthrax letter attacks in the United States in the fall of 2001, there has been increased interest in physical and chemical characterization of bacterial spores. While molecular methods are powerful tools for identifying genetic differences, other methods may be able to differentiate genetically identical samples based on physical and chemical properties, as well as provide complimentary information, such as methods of production and approximate date of production. Microanalysis has the potential to contribute significantly to microbial forensics. Bacillus spores are highly structured, consisting of a core, cortex, coat, and in some species, an exosporium. This structure provides a template for constraining elemental abundance differences at the nanometer scale. The primary controls on the distribution of major elements in spores are likely structural and physiological. For example, P and Ca are known to be abundant in the spore core because that is where P-rich nucleic acids and Cadipicolinic acid are located, respectively. Trace elements are known to bind to the spore coat but the controls on these elements are less well understood. Elemental distributions and abundances may be directly related to spore production, purification and stabilization methodologies, which are of particular interest for forensic investigation. To this end, we are developing a high-resolution secondary ion mass spectrometry method using a Cameca NanoSIMS 50 to study the distribution and abundance of trace elements in bacterial spores. In this presentation we will review and compare methods for preparing and analyzing samples, as well as review results on the distribution and abundance of elements in bacterial spores. We use NanoSIMS to

  6. Intact Cell/Spore Mass Spectrometry of Fusarium Macro Conidia for Fast Isolate and Species Differentiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dong, Hongjuan; Marchetti-Deschmann, Martina; Winkler, Wolfgang; Lohninger, Hans; Allmaier, Guenter

    The focus of this paper is the development of an approach called intact cell mass spectrometry (ICMS) or intact spore mass spectrometry (ISMS) based on the technique matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS) for the rapid differentiation and identification of Fusarium species. Several parameters, which are known to affect the quality of IC mass spectra, have been investigated in detail by varying the MALDI matrix as well as the solvent system, in which the matrix has been dissolved, the solvent system for sample purification and the type of sample/MALDI matrix deposition technique. In the end characteristic as well as highly reproducible IC or IS mass spectra or peptide/protein fingerprints of three Fusarium species (F. cerealis, F. graminearum and F. poae) including 16 Fusarium isolates derived from different hosts and geographical locations have been obtained. Unscaled hierarchical cluster analysis based on ICMS data of eight selected Fusarium isolates of two species F. graminearum and F. poae revealed significant difference among the peptide/protein pattern of them. The results of the applied cluster analysis proved that, ICMS is a powerful approach for the rapid differentiation of Fusarium species. In addition, an on-target tryptic digestion was applied to Fusarium macro conidia spores to identify proteins using MALDI post source decay (PSD) fragment ion analysis. Two kinds of trypsin, namely bead-immobilized - to favor cleavage of surface-associated proteins - and non-immobilized trypsin were applied and compared. The results showed that the latter is more suitable for generating sequence tags by PSD fragment ion analysis.

  7. MODELING OF CEREAL RUST EPIDEMICS IN RUSSIA: DISPERSION OF SPORE CLOUDS, EXTRACTION OF SPORES FROM ATMOSPHERE, MAINTAINING VIABILITY TRANSFERRED

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Meteorological classification of air masse movements, microscale (0-10 km), mesoscale (10-100 km), and macroscale (over 100 km) was used to study dispersion of rust spore clouds. More than 300 atmosphere probes were made at the different distance from infected fields using planes equipped with impac...

  8. Bacillus cereus spores during housing of dairy cows: factors affecting contamination of raw milk.

    PubMed

    Magnusson, M; Christiansson, A; Svensson, B

    2007-06-01

    The contamination of raw milk with Bacillus cereus spores was studied during the indoor confinement of dairy cattle. The occurrence of spores in fresh and used bedding material, air samples, feed, feces, and the rinse water from milking equipment was compared with the spore level in bulk tank milk on 2 farms, one of which had 2 different housing systems. A less extensive study was carried out on an additional 5 farms. High spore concentrations of >100 spores/L in the raw milk were found on 4 of the farms. The number of spores found in the feed, feces, and air was too small to be of importance for milk contamination. Elevated spore contents in the rinse water from the milking equipment (up to 322 spores/L) were observed and large numbers of spores were found in the used bedding material, especially in free stalls with >5 cm deep sawdust beds. At most, 87,000 spores/g were found in used sawdust bedding. A positive correlation was found between the spore content in used bedding material and milk (r = 0.72). Comparison of the genetic fingerprints obtained by the random amplified polymorphic DNA PCR of isolates of B. cereus from the different sources indicated that used bedding material was the major source of contamination. A separate feeding experiment in which cows were experimentally fed B. cereus spores showed a positive relationship between the number of spores in the feed and feces and in the feces and milk (r = 0.78). The results showed that contaminated feed could be a significant source of spore contamination of raw milk if the number of spores excreted in the feces exceeded 100,000/g. PMID:17517714

  9. Ultrastructural midgut events in Culicidae larvae fed with Bacillus sphaericus 2297 spore/crystal complex.

    PubMed

    Charles, J F

    1987-01-01

    Ingestion of Bacillus sphaericus 2297 spore/crystal complex by Culicidae larvae Anopheles stephensi, Culex pipiens subsp. pipiens and Aedes aegypti was rapidly followed by a dissolution of the protein crystalline inclusions inside the anterior stomach of the three species. During the first day of intoxication, B. sphaericus spores germinated within the midgut lumen, and were in a vegetative stage between 36-48 h after ingestion when the larvae began to die. Ultrastructural observations focused on larval midgut showed alterations which differed according to the mosquito species, being localized mainly in the gastric caeca and posterior stomach. With the bacterial concentration used, neither general cell swelling nor complete breakdown of the midgut epithelium was recorded before larval death. In A. stephensi larval midgut epithelium large low-electron-density areas appeared, rough endoplasmic reticula formed numerous concentrical structures and mitochondria swelled. Large vacuoles (of unknown origin) appeared early on in the C. pipiens midgut cells, and rough endoplasmic reticula broke into small vesicles. Midgut epithelial cells of A. aegypti showed mitochondria swelling except in the anterior stomach, and a vacuolisation of smooth reticula: these aspects remained unchanged until the larvae died. PMID:3663390

  10. Mixed Production of Filamentous Fungal Spores for Preventing Soil-Transmitted Helminth Zoonoses: A Preliminary Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Arias, M. S.; Cazapal-Monteiro, C. F.; Suárez, J.; Miguélez, S.; Francisco, I.; Arroyo, F. L.; Suárez, J. L.; Paz-Silva, A.; Sánchez-Andrade, R.; Mendoza de Gives, P.

    2013-01-01

    Helminth zoonoses are parasitic infections shared by humans and animals, being the soil-transmitted helminths (STHs) mainly caused by roundworms (ascarids) and hookworms. This study was aimed to assess the individual and/or mixed production of two helminth-antagonistic fungi, one ovicide (Mucor circinelloides) and other predator (Duddingtonia flagrans). Fungi were grown both in Petri plates and in a submerged culture (composed by water, NaCl, Na2HPO4· 12 H2O, and wheat (Triticum aestivum)). A Fasciola hepatica recombinant protein (FhrAPS) was incorporated to the cultures to improve fungal production. All the cultured plates showed fungal growth, without difference in the development of the fungi when grown alone or mixed. High counts of Mucor spores were produced in liquid media cultures, and no significant differences were achieved regarding single or mixed cultures, or the incorporation of the FhrAPS. A significantly higher production of Duddingtonia spores after the incorporation of the FhrAPS was observed. When analyzing the parasiticide efficacy of the fungal mixture, viability of T. canis eggs reduced to 51%, and the numbers of third stage cyathostomin larvae reduced to 4%. It is concluded, the capability of a fungal mixture containing an ovicide (Mucor) and a predator species (Duddingtonia) for growing together in a submerged medium containing the FhrAPS offers a very interesting tool for preventing STHs. PMID:23710451

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2004-04-26

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

  12. Explosively launched spores of ascomycete fungi have drag-minimizing shapes.

    PubMed

    Roper, Marcus; Pepper, Rachel E; Brenner, Michael P; Pringle, Anne

    2008-12-30

    The forcibly launched spores of ascomycete fungi must eject through several millimeters of nearly still air surrounding fruiting bodies to reach dispersive air flows. Because of their microscopic size, spores experience great fluid drag, and although this drag can aid transport by slowing sedimentation out of dispersive air flows, it also causes spores to decelerate rapidly after launch. We hypothesize that spores are shaped to maximize their range in the nearly still air surrounding fruiting bodies. To test this hypothesis we numerically calculate optimal spore shapes-shapes of minimum drag for prescribed volumes-and compare these shapes with real spore shapes taken from a phylogeny of >100 species. Our analysis shows that spores are constrained to remain within 1% of the minimum possible drag for their size. From the spore shapes we predict the speed of spore launch, and confirm this prediction through high-speed imaging of ejection in Neurospora tetrasperma. By reconstructing the evolutionary history of spore shapes within a single ascomycete family we measure the relative contributions of drag minimization and other shape determinants to spore shape evolution. Our study uses biomechanical optimization as an organizing principle for explaining shape in a mega-diverse group of species and provides a framework for future measurements of the forces of selection toward physical optima. PMID:19104035

  13. Activity of bleach, ethanol and two commercial disinfectants against spores of Encephalitozoon cuniculi.

    PubMed

    Jordan, Carly N; Dicristina, Jennifer A; Lindsay, David S

    2006-03-31

    Encephalitozoon cuniculi is a small protist parasite in the phylum Microspora. Hosts are infected by ingestion or inhalation of spores passed in the urine or feces. Infection with E. cuniculi is usually asymptomatic, except in young or immunocompromised hosts. This study examined the effects of various disinfectants on in vitro infectivity of E. cuniculi spores. Spores of E. cuniculi were exposed to several dilutions of commercial bleach, 70% ethanol and dilutions of commercial disinfectants HiTor and Roccal for 10 min and then loaded onto human fibroblast cells (Hs68 cells). Ten minutes of exposure to these disinfectants was lethal to E. cuniculi spores. Additional exposure time studies were done using dilutions of bleach at 0.1, 1 and 10%, and 70% ethanol. Exposure of E. cuniculi spores to 1 or 10% bleach for 30s rendered them non-infectious for Hs68 cells. Growth of E. cuniculi was observed in Hs68 cells inoculated with spores treated with 0.1% bleach for 30s or 1, 3 and 5 min, but not with spores treated for 7 min or longer. Exposure of E. cuniculi spores to 70% ethanol for 30s rendered them non-infectious for Hs68 cells. Spores of E. cuniculi are more sensitive to disinfectants than are coccidial oocysts and other parasite cysts. The relatively short contact time needed to kill spores indicates that disinfection of animal housing may be a viable means to reduce exposure of animals to E. cuniculi spores. PMID:16368193

  14. Spore Dispersion of Tricholoma matsutake at a Pinus densiflora Stand in Korea

    PubMed Central

    Ka, Kang-Hyeon

    2010-01-01

    The spore of Tricholoma matsutake is considered to be the starting point of the mushroom growth cycle, but the mechanism of mycelial development from the spore stage is not yet clarified. In this study, we tried to measure how far the spores of T. matsutake disperse from a fruiting body located at a Pinus densiflora stand in Korea. We established 16 slide glasses coated with glycerin near a fruiting body in four directions separated by four different distance intervals within a mushroom productive stand after removing all other fruiting bodies from three plots. The number of dispersed spores increased with time from the first day (475 spores/cm2) to the fourth day (836 spores/cm2) after the pileus opened. The number of spores dispersed downward was about 1.5 times greater than that dispersed toward the ridge. The number of dispersed spores decreased exponentially as the distance from each fruiting body increased. More than 95% of the spores dropped within a meter from the fruiting body, with 75% dropping within 0.5 m. Even so, the number of spores dispersed over 5 m from the fruiting body was more than 50 million when considering the total number of spores produced by a fruiting body is about 5 billion. PMID:23956655

  15. BzpF is a CREB-like transcription factor that regulates spore maturation and stability in Dictyostelium.

    PubMed

    Huang, Eryong; Talukder, Shaheynoor; Hughes, Timothy R; Curk, Tomaz; Zupan, Blaz; Shaulsky, Gad; Katoh-Kurasawa, Mariko

    2011-10-01

    The cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB) is a highly conserved transcription factor that integrates signaling through the cAMP-dependent protein kinase A (PKA) in many eukaryotes. PKA plays a critical role in Dictyostelium development but no CREB homologue has been identified in this system. Here we show that Dictyostelium utilizes a CREB-like protein, BzpF, to integrate PKA signaling during late development. bzpF(-) mutants produce compromised spores, which are extremely unstable and germination defective. Previously, we have found that BzpF binds the canonical CRE motif in vitro. In this paper, we determined the DNA binding specificity of BzpF using protein binding microarray (PBM) and showed that the motif with the highest specificity is a CRE-like sequence. BzpF is necessary to activate the transcription of at least 15 PKA-regulated, late-developmental target genes whose promoters contain BzpF binding motifs. BzpF is sufficient to activate two of these genes. The comparison of RNA sequencing data between wild type and bzpF(-) mutant revealed that the mutant fails to express 205 genes, many of which encode cellulose-binding and sugar-binding proteins. We propose that BzpF is a CREB-like transcription factor that regulates spore maturation and stability in a PKA-related manner. PMID:21810415

  16. Two Class A High-Molecular-Weight Penicillin-Binding Proteins of Bacillus subtilis Play Redundant Roles in Sporulation

    PubMed Central

    McPherson, Derrell C.; Driks, Adam; Popham, David L.

    2001-01-01

    The four class A penicillin-binding proteins (PBPs) of Bacillus subtilis appear to play functionally redundant roles in polymerizing the peptidoglycan (PG) strands of the vegetative-cell and spore walls. The ywhE product was shown to bind penicillin, so the gene and gene product were renamed pbpG and PBP2d, respectively. Construction of mutant strains lacking multiple class A PBPs revealed that, while PBP2d plays no obvious role in vegetative-wall synthesis, it does play a role in spore PG synthesis. A pbpG null mutant produced spore PG structurally similar to that of the wild type; however, electron microscopy revealed that in a significant number of these spores the PG did not completely surround the spore core. In a pbpF pbpG double mutant this spore PG defect was apparent in every spore produced, indicating that these two gene products play partially redundant roles. A normal amount of spore PG was produced in the double mutant, but it was frequently produced in large masses on either side of the forespore. The double-mutant spore PG had structural alterations indicative of improper cortex PG synthesis, including twofold decreases in production of muramic δ-lactam and l-alanine side chains and a slight increase in cross-linking. Sporulation gene expression in the pbpF pbpG double mutant was normal, but the double-mutant spores failed to reach dormancy and subsequently degraded their spore PG. We suggest that these two forespore-synthesized PBPs are required for synthesis of the spore germ cell wall, the first layer of spore PG synthesized on the surface of the inner forespore membrane, and that in the absence of the germ cell wall the cells lack a template needed for proper synthesis of the spore cortex, the outer layers of spore PG, by proteins on the outer forespore membrane. PMID:11567005

  17. In vitro high-resolution structural dynamics of single germinating bacterial spores

    SciTech Connect

    Plomp, M; Leighton, T; Wheeler, K; Malkin, A

    2006-11-14

    Although significant progress has been achieved in understanding the genetic and biochemical bases of the spore germination process, the structural basis for breaking the dormant spore state remains poorly understood. We have used atomic force microscopy (AFM) to probe the high-resolution structural dynamics of single Bacillus atrophaeus spores germinating under native conditions. Here we show that AFM can reveal previously unrecognized germination-induced alterations in spore coat architecture and topology as well as the disassembly of outer spore coat rodlet structures. These results and previous studies in other microorganisms suggest that the spore coat rodlets are structurally similar to amyloid fibrils. AFM analysis of the nascent surface of the emerging germ cell revealed a porous network of peptidoglycan fibers. The results are consistent with a honeycomb model structure for synthetic peptidoglycan oligomers determined by nuclear magnetic resonance. AFM is a promising experimental tool for investigating the morphogenesis of spore germination and cell wall peptidoglycan structure.

  18. In vitro high-resolution structural dynamics of single germinating bacterial spores

    SciTech Connect

    Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

    2006-12-11

    Although significant progress has been achieved in understanding the genetic and biochemical bases of the spore germination process, the structural basis for breaking the dormant spore state remains poorly understood. We have used atomic force microscopy (AFM) to probe the high-resolution structural dynamics of single Bacillus atrophaeus spores germinating under native conditions. Here we show that AFM can reveal previously unrecognized germination-induced alterations in spore coat architecture and topology as well as the disassembly of outer spore coat rodlet structures. These results and previous studies in other microorganisms suggest that the spore coat rodlets are structurally similar to amyloid fibrils. AFM analysis of the nascent surface of the emerging germ cell revealed a porous network of peptidoglycan fibers. The results are consistent with a honeycomb model structure for synthetic peptidoglycan oligomers determined by nuclear magnetic resonance. AFM is a promising experimental tool for investigating the morphogenesis of spore germination and cell wall peptidoglycan structure.

  19. Analysis of Yeast Sporulation Efficiency, Spore Viability, and Meiotic Recombination on Solid Medium.

    PubMed

    Börner, G Valentin; Cha, Rita S

    2015-11-01

    Under conditions of nutrient deprivation, yeast cells initiate a differentiation program in which meiosis is induced and spores are formed. During meiosis, one round of genome duplication is followed by two rounds of chromosome segregation (meiosis I and meiosis II) to generate four haploid nuclei. Meiotic recombination occurs during prophase I. During sporogenesis, each nucleus becomes surrounded by an individual spore wall, and all four haploid spores become contained as a tetrad within an ascus. Important insights into the meiotic function(s) of a gene of interest can be gained by observing the effects of gene mutations on spore viability and viability patterns among tetrads. Moreover, recombination frequencies among viable spores can reveal potential involvement of the gene during meiotic exchange between homologous chromosomes. Here, we describe methods for inducing spore formation on solid medium, determining spore viability, and measuring, via tetrad analysis, frequencies of crossing over and gene conversion as indicators of meiotic chromosome exchange. PMID:26527763

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  1. Schizosaccharomyces pombe Sst4p, a Conserved Vps27/Hrs Homolog, Functions Downstream of Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinase Pik3p To Mediate Proper Spore Formation▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Onishi, Masayuki; Iida, Michihiro; Koga, Takako; Yamada, Sadayuki; Hirata, Aiko; Iwaki, Tomoko; Takegawa, Kaoru; Fukui, Yasuhisa; Tachikawa, Hiroyuki

    2007-01-01

    Sporulation of the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe is a developmental process that generates gametes and that includes the formation of spore envelope precursors called the forespore membranes. Assembly and development of forespore membranes require vesicular trafficking from other intracellular membrane compartments. We have shown that phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PtdIns 3-kinase) is required for efficient and proper development of forespore membranes. The role of a FYVE domain protein, Sst4p, a homolog of Vps27p/Hrs, as a downstream factor for PtdIns 3-kinase in sporulation was investigated. sst4Δ asci formed spores with oval-shaped morphology and with reduced viability compared to that of the wild-type spores. The extension of forespore membranes was inefficient, and bubble-like structures emerged from the leading edges of the forespore membranes. Sst4p localization was examined using fluorescent protein fusions and was found to be adjacent to the forespore membranes during sporulation. The localization and function of Sst4p were dependent on its FYVE domain and on PtdIns 3-kinase. Sst4p colocalized and interacted with Hse1p, a homolog of Saccharomyces cerevisiae Hse1p and of mammalian STAM. Mutations in all three UIM domains of the Sst4p/Hse1p complex resulted in formation of spores with abnormal morphology. These results suggest that Sst4p is a downstream factor of PtdIns 3-kinase and functions in forespore membrane formation. PMID:17951524

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

    PubMed Central

    Felker, Daniel L.; Burggraf, Larry W.

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-03-01

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

  4. Inactivation of Bacillus subtilis spores by high pressure CO2 with high temperature.

    PubMed

    Rao, Lei; Xu, Zhenzhen; Wang, Yongtao; Zhao, Feng; Hu, Xiaosong; Liao, Xiaojun

    2015-07-16

    The objective of this study was to investigate the inactivation of the Bacillus subtilis spores by high pressure CO2 combined with high temperature (HPCD+HT) and to analyze the clumping effect of the spores on their HPCD+HT resistance. The spores of B. subtilis were subjected to heat at 0.1 MPa and HPCD at 6.5-25 MPa, and 82 °C, 86 °C, and 91 °C for 0-120 min. The spores were effectively inactivated by HPCD+HT, but a protective effect on the spores was also found, which was closely correlated to the pressure, temperature and time. The spores treated by HPCD+HT at 6.5 and 10 MPa exhibited a two-stage inactivation curve of shoulder and log-linear regions whereas the spores at 15-25 MPa exhibited a three-stage inactivation curve of shoulder, log-linear and tailing regions, and these curves were well fitted to the Geeraerd model. Approximately 90% of pyridine-2,6-dicarboxylic acid (DPA) was released after HPCD+HT and the 90% DPA release time depend on the pressure and temperature. Moreover, the spore clumping in suspensions was examined by dynamic light scattering. The particle size of the spore suspensions increased with the increase of pressure, temperature and time, indicating the spore clumping. 0.1% Tween 80 as a surfactant inhibited the spore clumping and increased the inactivation ratio of the spores by HPCD+HT. These results indicated that the spore clumping enhanced the spores' resistance to HPCD+HT and induced a protective effect. PMID:25889524

  5. Transcriptome analysis of Bacillus thuringiensis spore life, germination and cell outgrowth in a vegetable-based food model.

    PubMed

    Bassi, Daniela; Colla, Francesca; Gazzola, Simona; Puglisi, Edoardo; Delledonne, Massimo; Cocconcelli, Pier Sandro

    2016-05-01

    Toxigenic species belonging to Bacillus cereus sensu lato, including Bacillus thuringiensis, cause foodborne outbreaks thanks to their capacity to survive as spores and to grow in food matrixes. The goal of this work was to assess by means of a genome-wide transcriptional assay, in the food isolate B. thuringiensis UC10070, the gene expression behind the process of spore germination and consequent outgrowth in a vegetable-based food model. Scanning electron microscopy and Energy Dispersive X-ray microanalysis were applied to select the key steps of B. thuringiensis UC10070 cell cycle to be analyzed with DNA-microarrays. At only 40 min from heat activation, germination started rapidly and in less than two hours spores transformed in active growing cells. A total of 1646 genes were found to be differentially expressed and modulated during the entire B. cereus life cycle in the food model, with most of the significant genes belonging to transport, transcriptional regulation and protein synthesis, cell wall and motility and DNA repair groups. Gene expression studies revealed that toxin-coding genes nheC, cytK and hblC were found to be expressed in vegetative cells growing in the food model. PMID:26742618

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  7. Identifying experimental surrogates for Bacillus anthracis spores: a review

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Bacillus anthracis, the causative agent of anthrax, is a proven biological weapon. In order to study this threat, a number of experimental surrogates have been used over the past 70 years. However, not all surrogates are appropriate for B. anthracis, especially when investigating transport, fate and survival. Although B. atrophaeus has been widely used as a B. anthracis surrogate, the two species do not always behave identically in transport and survival models. Therefore, we devised a scheme to identify a more appropriate surrogate for B. anthracis. Our selection criteria included risk of use (pathogenicity), phylogenetic relationship, morphology and comparative survivability when challenged with biocides. Although our knowledge of certain parameters remains incomplete, especially with regards to comparisons of spore longevity under natural conditions, we found that B. thuringiensis provided the best overall fit as a non-pathogenic surrogate for B. anthracis. Thus, we suggest focusing on this surrogate in future experiments of spore fate and transport modelling. PMID:21092338

  8. Effects of gamma radiation on viability of Encephalitozoon spores.

    PubMed

    Li, X; Trout, J M; Jenkins, M C; Palmer, R; Fayer, R

    2002-08-01

    Spores of Encephalitozoon cuniculi, E. hellem, and E. intestinalis harvested from cultured mammalian cells were suspended in deionized water, exposed to gamma irradiation at doses of 0-3.0 kGy, and then tested for infectivity by inoculating spores into monolayer cultures of Madin-Darby bovine kidney cells. The cultures were examined for developing microsporidia 4 days later. As the dosage level of radiation increased, corresponding decreases were observed in the number of developing microsporidia for all 3 species. For E. cuniculi and E. intestinalis, 100% inhibition of development was observed after exposure to 1.5 and 2.0 kGy, respectively. Although development of E. hellem was greatly inhibited (97.6% inhibition) after exposure to 3.0 kGy, complete inhibition was not obtained. These findings provide a baseline for investigating the dose levels required to render food products safe when kept under varying temperature, moisture, and other storage conditions. PMID:12197142

  9. Visualizing Bacillus subtilis During Vegetative Growth and Spore Formation.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xindan; Montero Llopis, Paula

    2016-01-01

    Bacillus subtilis is the most commonly used Gram-positive bacterium to study cellular processes because of its genetic tractability. In addition, during nutrient limitation, B. subtilis undergoes the development process of spore formation, which is among the simplest examples of cellular differentiation. Many aspects of these processes have benefited from fluorescence microscopy. Here, we describe basic wide-field fluorescence microscopy techniques to visualize B. subtilis during vegetative growth, and the developmental process of sporulation. PMID:27283315

  10. Distribution of sterols in the fungi. I - Fungal spores

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weete, J. D.; Laseter, J. L.

    1974-01-01

    Mass spectrometry was used to examine freely extractable sterols from spores of several species of fungi. Ergosterol was the most common sterol produced by any individual species, but it was completely absent from two species belonging to apparently distantly related groups of fungi: the aquatic Phycomycetes and the rust fungi. This fact could have taxonomic or phylogenetic implications. The use of glass capillary columns in the resolution of the sterols is shown to eliminate some of the difficulty inherent in this process.

  11. Decontamination after a release of B. anthracis spores.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Chris G; Kirvel, Robert D; Love, Adam H; Bailey, Christopher G; Miles, Robin; Schweickert, Jerry; Sutton, Mark; Raber, Ellen

    2012-03-01

    Decontaminating civilian facilities or large urban areas following an attack with Bacillus anthracis poses daunting challenges because of the lack of resources and proven technologies. Nevertheless, lessons learned from the 2001 cleanups together with advances derived from recent research have improved our understanding of what is required for effective decontamination. This article reviews current decontamination technologies appropriate for use in outdoor environments, on material surfaces, within large enclosed spaces, in water, and on waste contaminated with aerosolized B. anthracis spores. PMID:22352747

  12. Long-term exposure of bacterial spores to space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Horneck, G.; Buecker, H.; Reitz, G.

    1992-01-01

    With the NASA mission of the Long Duration Exposure Facility (LDEF), the authors have obtained the opportunity to expose Bacillus subtilis spores for nearly six years to the space environment and to analyze their responses after retrieval. The experiment was mounted onto a side tray of LDEF facing space. Data shows that the chances of microorganisms surviving in free space will be greatly increased by adequate shielding against solar ultraviolet light.

  13. Fungal spores overwhelm biogenic organic aerosols in a midlatitudinal forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Chunmao; Kawamura, Kimitaka; Fukuda, Yasuro; Mochida, Michihiro; Iwamoto, Yoko

    2016-06-01

    Both primary biological aerosol particles (PBAPs) and oxidation products of biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs) contribute significantly to organic aerosols (OAs) in forested regions. However, little is known about their relative importance in diurnal timescales. Here, we report biomarkers of PBAP and secondary organic aerosols (SOAs) for their diurnal variability in a temperate coniferous forest in Wakayama, Japan. Tracers of fungal spores, trehalose, arabitol and mannitol, showed significantly higher levels in nighttime than daytime (p < 0.05), resulting from the nocturnal sporulation under near-saturated relative humidity. On the contrary, BVOC oxidation products showed higher levels in daytime than nighttime, indicating substantial photochemical SOA formation. Using tracer-based methods, we estimated that fungal spores account for 45 % of organic carbon (OC) in nighttime and 22 % in daytime, whereas BVOC oxidation products account for 15 and 19 %, respectively. To our knowledge, we present for the first time highly time-resolved results that fungal spores overwhelmed BVOC oxidation products in contributing to OA especially in nighttime. This study emphasizes the importance of both PBAPs and SOAs in forming forest organic aerosols.

  14. Limited period of graviresponsiveness in germinating spores of Ceratopteris richardii

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Edwards, E. S.; Roux, S. J.

    1994-01-01

    Rhizoids of the fern Ceratopteris richardii Brogn. usually emerge 40 h after germination is initiated by light, and more than 90% of them emerge growing in a downward direction. However, when the spores are germinated on a clinostat, the emerging rhizoids show no preferential orientation. This indicates that under normal 1 g conditions the initial growth direction of rhizoids can be oriented by gravity. If the orientation of the spores is changed 3 h or less after the start of germination, the growth direction of most emerging rhizoids becomes downward relative to the new orientation. However, if the orientation of the spores is changed by 180 degrees 8 h or more after germination is initiated by light, most rhizoids emerge growing upward; i.e., the same direction as if there had been no orientation change. Emerged rhizoids also do not change their direction of growth if their orientation is changed. These results indicate that the growth direction of emerging rhizoids is set by gravity prior to actual emergence, and that the time of full orientation responsiveness is limited to a period ranging from the initiation of germination to about 3-4 h after the start of germination. There is a gravity-oriented nuclear movement beginning at about 13 h after germination, and this movement appears to predict the initial growth direction of rhizoids.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2009-05-01

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

  16. Uplift and Outflow of Bacterial Spores via Electric Field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dehel, T.

    The questions of how did life arise and is there life on other planets are some of the most profound questions that humanity asks Although there has been controversial signs of past bacterial life in meteorites which originated on Mars and there are current claims of bacterial life high in the atmosphere the issues of origin by chemical process or contamination make these types of results arguable and they will likely remain that way until a comprehensive theory is developed to explain why the claims might be true This paper proposes a complete theory for the spread of bacterial life throughout the galaxy by combining current knowledge from the fields of bacteriology stellar evolution and space weather Here we show the possibility that the forces of uplift on a charged bacteria particle are sufficient bring at least some lighter types of bacteria high into the ionosphere and subsequently move the charged spore onto magnetic field lines The bacteria spore is then driven down the magnetotail where during a solar storm a structure known as a plasmoid is propelled radially outward into space at velocities exceeding solar system escape velocity From that point the plasmoids are capable of reaching Mars the outer planets and even others systems eventually depositing the bacterial spores either via comets or direct interaction with the receiving planet The solid observational evidence for the strength of the electric fields and the speeds that the plasmoids leave the magnetotail during geomagnetic storms provide a firm

  17. Raman spectroscopic study of Lactarius spores (Russulales, Fungi).

    PubMed

    De Gussem, Kris; Vandenabeele, Peter; Verbeken, Annemieke; Moens, Luc

    2005-10-01

    Fungi are important organisms in ecosystems, in industrial and pharmaceutical production and are valuable food sources as well. Classical identification is often time-consuming and specialistic. In this study, Raman spectroscopy is applied to the analysis of fungal spores of Lactarius, an economically and ecologically important genus of Basidiomycota. Raman spectra of spores of Lactarius controversus Pers.: Fr., Lactarius lacunarum (Romagn.) ex Hora, Lactarius quieticolor Romagn. and Lactarius quietus (Fr.: Fr.) Fr. are reported for the first time. The spectra of these species show large similarity. These spectra are studied and compared with the Raman spectra of reference substances known to occur in macrofungi, including saccharides, lipids and some minor compounds that may serve as specific biomarkers (adenine, ergosterol and glycine). Most Raman bands could be attributed to specific components. In agreement with the biological role of fungal spores, high amounts of lipids were observed, the main fatty acid being oleate. In addition to different types of lipids and phospholipids, the polysaccharides chitin and amylopectin could be detected as well. The presence of trehalose is not equivocally shown, due to overlapping bands. Raman band positions are reported for the observed bands of the different species and reference products. PMID:16165029

  18. Raman spectroscopic study of Lactarius spores (Russulales, Fungi)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    De Gussem, Kris; Vandenabeele, Peter; Verbeken, Annemieke; Moens, Luc

    2005-10-01

    Fungi are important organisms in ecosystems, in industrial and pharmaceutical production and are valuable food sources as well. Classical identification is often time-consuming and specialistic. In this study, Raman spectroscopy is applied to the analysis of fungal spores of Lactarius, an economically and ecologically important genus of Basidiomycota. Raman spectra of spores of Lactarius controversus Pers.: Fr., Lactarius lacunarum (Romagn.) ex Hora, Lactarius quieticolor Romagn. and Lactarius quietus (Fr.: Fr.) Fr. are reported for the first time. The spectra of these species show large similarity. These spectra are studied and compared with the Raman spectra of reference substances known to occur in macrofungi, including saccharides, lipids and some minor compounds that may serve as specific biomarkers (adenine, ergosterol and glycine). Most Raman bands could be attributed to specific components. In agreement with the biological role of fungal spores, high amounts of lipids were observed, the main fatty acid being oleate. In addition to different types of lipids and phospholipids, the polysaccharides chitin and amylopectin could be detected as well. The presence of trehalose is not equivocally shown, due to overlapping bands. Raman band positions are reported for the observed bands of the different species and reference products.

  19. Quantum dot incorporated Bacillus spore as nanosensor for viral infection.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xinya; Zhou, Qian; Shen, Zhongfeng; Li, Zheng; Fei, Ruihua; Ji, Eoon Hye; Hu, Shen; Hu, Yonggang

    2015-12-15

    In this paper, we report a high-throughput biological method to prepare spore-based monodisperse microparticles (SMMs) and then form the nanocomposites of CdTe quantum dot (QD)-loaded SMMs by utilizing the endogenous functional groups from Bacillus spores. The SMMs and QD-incorporated spore microspheres (QDSMs) were characterized by using transmission electron microscopy, high-resolution transmission electron microscopy, fluorescence microscopy, fluorescence and UV-visible absorption spectroscopy, zeta potential analysis, Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy, potentiometric titrations, X-ray photo-electron spectroscopy. The thermodynamics of QD/SMM interaction and antigen/QDSM interaction was also investigated by isothermal titration microcalorimetry (ITC). Fluorescent QDSMs coded either with a single luminescence color or with multiple colors of controlled emission intensity ratios were obtained. Green QDSMs were used as a model system to detect porcine parvovirus antibody in swine sera via flow cytometry, and the results demonstrated a great potential of QDSMs in high-throughput immunoassays. Due to the advantages such as simplicity, low cost, high throughput and eco-friendliness, our developed platform may find wide applications in disease detection, food safety evaluation and environmental assessment. PMID:26190468

  20. Mutagenesis of Bacillus subtilis spores exposed to simulated space environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munakata, N.; Natsume, T.; Takahashi, K.; Hieda, K.; Panitz, C.; Horneck, G.

    Bacterial spores can endure in a variety of extreme earthly environments. However, some conditions encountered during the space flight could be detrimental to DNA in the spore, delimiting the possibility of transpermia. We investigate the genetic consequences of the exposure to space environments in a series of preflight simulation project of EXPOSE. Using Bacillus subtilis spores of repair-proficient HA101 and repair-deficient TKJ6312 strains, the mutations conferring resistance to rifampicin were detected, isolated and sequenced. Most of the mutations were located in a N-terminal region of the rpoB gene encoding RNA polymerase beta-subunit. Among several potentially mutagenic factors, high vacuum, UV radiation, heat, and accelerated heavy ions induced mutations with varying efficiencies. A majority of mutations induced by vacuum exposure carried a tandem double-base change (CA to TT) at a unique sequence context of TCAGC. Results indicate that the vacuum and high temperature may act synergistically for the induction of mutations.

  1. Long-term survival of bacterial spores in space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Horneck, G.; Bucker, H.; Reitz, G.

    1994-01-01

    On board of the NASA Long Duration Exposure Facility (LDEF), spores of Bacillus subtilis in monolayers (10(exp 6)/sample) or multilayers (10(exp 8)/sample) were exposed to the space environment for nearly six years and their survival was analyzed after retrieval. The response to space parameters, such as vacuum (10(exp -6) Pa), solar electromagnetic radiation up to the highly energetic vacuum-ultraviolet range 10(exp 9) J/sq m) and/or cosmic radiation (4.8 Gy), was studied and compared to the results of a simultaneously running ground control experiment. If shielded against solar ultraviolet (UV)-radiation, up to 80% of spores in multilayers survive in space. Solar UV-radiation, being the most deleterious parameter of space, reduces survival by 4 orders of magnitude or more. However, up to 10(exp 4) viable spores were still recovered, even in completely unprotected samples. Substances, such as glucose or buffer salts serve as chemical protectants. With this 6 year study in space, experimental data are provided to the discussion on the likelihood of 'Panspermia'.

  2. Airborne pollen and spores of León (Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fernández-González, Delia; Suarez-Cervera, María; Díaz-González, Tomás; Valencia-Barrera, Rosa María

    1993-06-01

    A qualitative and quantitative analysis of airborne pollen and spores was carried out over 2 years (from September 1987 to August 1989) in the city of León. Slides were prepared daily using a volumetric pollen trap, which was placed on the Faculty of Veterinary Science building (University of León) 12m above ground-level. Fifty-one pollen types were observed; the most important of these were: Cupressaceae during the winter, Pinus and Quercus in spring, and Poaceae, Leguminosae and Chenopodiaceae in the summer. The results also showed the existence of a rich mould spore assemblage in the atmosphere. The group of Amerospores ( Penicillium, Aspergillus and Cladosporium) as well as Dictyospores ( Alternaria) were the most abundant; Puccinia was common in the air in August. Fluctuations in the total pollen and spores m3 of air were compared with meteorological parameters (temperature, relative humidity and rainfall). From the daily sampling of the atmosphere of León, considering the maximum and minimum temperature and duration of rainfall, the start of the pollen grain season was observed generally to coincide with a rise in temperature in the absence of rain.

  3. Arrhenius reconsidered: astrophysical jets and the spread of spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sheldon, Malkah I.; Sheldon, Robert B.

    2015-09-01

    In 1871, Lord Kelvin suggested that the fossil record could be an account of bacterial arrivals on comets. In 1903, Svante Arrhenius suggested that spores could be transported on stellar winds without comets. In 1984, Sir Fred Hoyle claimed to see the infrared signature of vast clouds of dried bacteria and diatoms. In 2012, the Polonnaruwa carbonaceous chondrite revealed fossilized diatoms apparently living on a comet. However, Arrhenius' spores were thought to perish in the long transit between stars. Those calculations, however, assume that maximum velocities are limited by solar winds to ~5 km/s. Herbig-Haro objects and T-Tauri stars, however, are young stars with jets of several 100 km/s that might provide the necessary propulsion. The central engine of bipolar astrophysical jets is not presently understood, but we argue it is a kinetic plasma instability of a charged central magnetic body. We show how to make a bipolar jet in a belljar. The instability is non-linear, and thus very robust to scaling laws that map from microquasars to active galactic nuclei. We scale up to stellar sizes and recalculate the viability/transit-time for spores carried by supersonic jets, to show the viability of the Arrhenius mechanism.

  4. LITERATURE REVIEW OF BORIC ACID SOLUBILITY DATA

    SciTech Connect

    Crapse, K.; Kyser, E.

    2011-09-22

    A new solvent system is being evaluated for use in the Modular Caustic-Side Solvent Extraction Unit (MCU) and in the Salt Waste Processing Facility (SWPF). The new system replaces the current dilute nitric acid strip solution with 0.01 M boric acid. This literature study is performed to determine if there is a potential for boric acid to crystallize in the lines with emphasis on the transfer lines to the Defense Waste Processing Facility. This report focuses on the aqueous phase chemistry of boric acid under conditions relevant to MCU and SWPF. Operating and transfer conditions examined for the purpose of this review include temperatures between 13 C (McLeskey, 2008) and 45 C (Fondeur, 2007) and concentrations from 0 to 3M in nitric acid as well as exposure of small amounts of entrained boric acid in the organic phase to the sodium hydroxide caustic wash stream. Experiments were also conducted to observe any chemical reactions and off-gas generation that could occur when 0.01 M boric acid solution mixes with 3 M nitric acid solution and vice versa. Based on the low concentration (0.01M) of boric acid in the MCU/SWPF strip acid and the moderate operating temperatures (13 C to 45 C), it is unlikely that crystallization of boric acid will occur in the acid strip solution under process or transfer conditions. Mixing experiments of boric and nitric acid show no measurable gas generation (< 1 cc of gas per liter of solution) under similar process conditions.

  5. MODELING OF CEREAL RUST EPIDEMICS IN RUSSIA: EMISSION OF SPORES INTO THE AIR FROM INFECTED CROPS AND FORMATION OF SPORE CLOUDS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Special isolating chambers were used to estimate quantity of spores of Puccinia triticina, P. graminis and P. striiformis in the field intact plants. Spore outflow from infected fields was estimated using ground and airborne impactors. Simultaneous factors that could affect emission and transfer of ...

  6. Clostridium difficile virulence factors: Insights into an anaerobic spore-forming pathogen

    PubMed Central

    Awad, Milena M; Johanesen, Priscilla A; Carter, Glen P; Rose, Edward; Lyras, Dena

    2014-01-01

    The worldwide emergence of epidemic strains of Clostridium difficile linked to increased disease severity and mortality has resulted in greater research efforts toward determining the virulence factors and pathogenesis mechanisms used by this organism to cause disease. C. difficile is an opportunist pathogen that employs many factors to infect and damage the host, often with devastating consequences. This review will focus on the role of the 2 major virulence factors, toxin A (TcdA) and toxin B (TcdB), as well as the role of other putative virulence factors, such as binary toxin, in C. difficile-mediated infection. Consideration is given to the importance of spores in both the initiation of disease and disease recurrence and also to the role that surface proteins play in host interactions. PMID:25483328

  7. A natural O-ring optimizes the dispersal of fungal spores

    PubMed Central

    Fritz, Joerg A.; Seminara, Agnese; Roper, Marcus; Pringle, Anne; Brenner, Michael P.

    2013-01-01

    The forcibly ejected spores of ascomycete fungi must penetrate several millimetres of nearly still air surrounding sporocarps to reach dispersive airflows, and escape is facilitated when a spore is launched with large velocity. To launch, the spores of thousands of species are ejected through an apical ring, a small elastic pore. The startling diversity of apical ring and spore shapes and dimensions make them favoured characters for both species descriptions and the subsequent inference of relationships among species. However, the physical constraints shaping this diversity and the adaptive benefits of specific morphologies are not understood. Here, we develop an elastohydrodynamic theory of the spore's ejection through the apical ring and demonstrate that to avoid enormous energy losses during spore ejection, the four principal morphological dimensions of spore and apical ring must cluster within a nonlinear one-dimensional subspace. We test this prediction using morphological data for 45 fungal species from two different classes and 18 families. Our sampling encompasses multiple loss and gain events and potentially independent origins of this spore ejection mechanism. Although the individual dimensions of the spore and apical ring are only weakly correlated with each other, they collapse into the predicted subspace with high accuracy. The launch velocity appears to be within 2 per cent of the optimum for over 90 per cent of all forcibly ejected species. Although the morphological diversity of apical rings and spores appears startlingly diverse, a simple principle can be used to organize it. PMID:23782534

  8. Genetic Diversity and Association Characters of Bacteria Isolated from Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungal Spore Walls

    PubMed Central

    Selvakumar, Gopal; Krishnamoorthy, Ramasamy; Kim, Kiyoon; Sa, Tong-Min

    2016-01-01

    Association between arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and bacteria has long been studied. However, the factors influencing their association in the natural environment is still unknown. This study aimed to isolate bacteria associated with spore walls of AMF and identify their potential characters for association. Spores collected from coastal reclamation land were differentiated based on their morphology and identified by 18S rDNA sequencing as Funneliformis caledonium, Racocetra alborosea and Funneliformis mosseae. Bacteria associated with AMF spore walls were isolated after treating them with disinfection solution at different time intervals. After 0, 10 and 20 min of spore disinfection, 86, 24 and 10 spore associated bacteria (SAB) were isolated, respectively. BOX-PCR fingerprinting analysis showed that diverse bacterial communities were associated to AMF spores. Bacteria belonging to the same genera could associate with different AMF spores. Gram positive bacteria were more closely associated with AMF spores. Isolated SAB were characterized and tested for spore association characters such as chitinase, protease, cellulase enzymes and exopolysaccharide production (EPS). Among the 120 SAB, 113 SAB were able to show one or more characters for association and seven SAB did not show any association characters. The 16S rDNA sequence of SAB revealed that bacteria belonging to the phyla Firmicutes, Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria and Bactereiodes were associated with AMF spore walls. PMID:27479250

  9. Use of Purified Clostridium difficile Spores To Facilitate Evaluation of Health Care Disinfection Regimens▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Lawley, Trevor D.; Clare, Simon; Deakin, Laura J.; Goulding, David; Yen, Jennifer L.; Raisen, Claire; Brandt, Cordelia; Lovell, Jon; Cooke, Fiona; Clark, Taane G.; Dougan, Gordon

    2010-01-01

    Clostridium difficile is a major cause of antibiotic-associated diarrheal disease in many parts of the world. In recent years, distinct genetic variants of C. difficile that cause severe disease and persist within health care settings have emerged. Highly resistant and infectious C. difficile spores are proposed to be the main vectors of environmental persistence and host transmission, so methods to accurately monitor spores and their inactivation are urgently needed. Here we describe simple quantitative methods, based on purified C. difficile spores and a murine transmission model, for evaluating health care disinfection regimens. We demonstrate that disinfectants that contain strong oxidizing active ingredients, such as hydrogen peroxide, are very effective in inactivating pure spores and blocking spore-mediated transmission. Complete inactivation of 106 pure C. difficile spores on indicator strips, a six-log reduction, and a standard measure of stringent disinfection regimens require at least 5 min of exposure to hydrogen peroxide vapor (HPV; 400 ppm). In contrast, a 1-min treatment with HPV was required to disinfect an environment that was heavily contaminated with C. difficile spores (17 to 29 spores/cm2) and block host transmission. Thus, pure C. difficile spores facilitate practical methods for evaluating the efficacy of C. difficile spore disinfection regimens and bringing scientific acumen to C. difficile infection control. PMID:20802075

  10. Significance of air humidity and air velocity for fungal spore release into the air

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    Our previous field studies have shown that the presence of molds in buildings does not necessarily mean elevated airborne spore counts. Therefore, we investigated the release of fungal spores from cultures of Aspergillus fumigatus, Penicillium sp. and Cladosporium sp. at different air velocities and air humidities. Spores of A. fumigatus and Penicillium sp. were released from conidiophores already at air velocity of 0.5 ms -1, whereas Cladosporium spores required at least a velocity of 1.0 ms -1. Airborne spore counts of A. fumigatus and Penicillium sp. were usually higher in dry than moist air, being minimal at relative humidities (r.h.) above 70%, while the effect of r.h. on the release of Cladosporium sp. was ambivalent. The geometric mean diameter of released spores increased when the r.h. exceeded a certain level which depends on fungal genus. Thus, spores of all three fungi were hygroscopic but the hygroscopicity of various spores appeared at different r.h.-ranges. This study indicates that spore release is controlled by external factors and depends on fungal genus which can be one reason for considerable variation of airborne spore counts in buildings with mold problems.

  11. Characterization of the Dynamic Germination of Individual Clostridium difficile Spores Using Raman Spectroscopy and Differential Interference Contrast Microscopy

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shiwei; Shen, Aimee; Setlow, Peter

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT The Gram-positive spore-forming anaerobe Clostridium difficile is a leading cause of nosocomial diarrhea. Spores of C. difficile initiate infection when triggered to germinate by bile salts in the gastrointestinal tract. We analyzed germination kinetics of individual C. difficile spores using Raman spectroscopy and differential interference contrast (DIC) microscopy. Similar to Bacillus spores, individual C. difficile spores germinating with taurocholate plus glycine began slow leakage of a ∼15% concentration of a chelate of Ca2+ and dipicolinic acid (CaDPA) at a heterogeneous time T1, rapidly released CaDPA at Tlag, completed CaDPA release at Trelease, and finished peptidoglycan cortex hydrolysis at Tlysis. T1 and Tlag values for individual spores were heterogeneous, but ΔTrelease periods (Trelease − Tlag) were relatively constant. In contrast to Bacillus spores, heat treatment did not stimulate spore germination in the two C. difficile strains tested. C. difficile spores did not germinate with taurocholate or glycine alone, and different bile salts differentially promoted spore germination, with taurocholate and taurodeoxycholate being best. Transient exposure of spores to taurocholate plus glycine was sufficient to commit individual spores to germinate. C. difficile spores did not germinate with CaDPA, in contrast to B. subtilis and C. perfringens spores. However, the detergent dodecylamine induced C. difficile spore germination, and rates were increased by spore coat removal although cortex hydrolysis did not follow Trelease, in contrast with B. subtilis. C. difficile spores lacking the cortex-lytic enzyme, SleC, germinated extremely poorly, and cortex hydrolysis was not observed in the few sleC spores that partially germinated. Overall, these findings indicate that C. difficile and B. subtilis spore germination exhibit key differences. IMPORTANCE Spores of the Gram-positive anaerobe Clostridium difficile are responsible for initiating infection

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1981-01-01

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

  13. Live Cell Imaging of Germination and Outgrowth of Individual Bacillus subtilis Spores; the Effect of Heat Stress Quantitatively Analyzed with SporeTracker

    PubMed Central

    Vischer, Norbert O. E.; Smelt, Jan P. P. M.; Brul, Stanley; Manders, Erik M. M.

    2013-01-01

    Spore-forming bacteria are a special problem for the food industry as some of them are able to survive preservation processes. Bacillus spp. spores can remain in a dormant, stress resistant state for a long period of time. Vegetative cells are formed by germination of spores followed by a more extended outgrowth phase. Spore germination and outgrowth progression are often very heterogeneous and therefore, predictions of microbial stability of food products are exceedingly difficult. Mechanistic details of the cause of this heterogeneity are necessary. In order to examine spore heterogeneity we made a novel closed air-containing chamber for live imaging. This chamber was used to analyze Bacillus subtilis spore germination, outgrowth, as well as subsequent vegetative growth. Typically, we examined around 90 starting spores/cells for ≥4 hours per experiment. Image analysis with the purposely built program “SporeTracker” allows for automated data processing from germination to outgrowth and vegetative doubling. In order to check the efficiency of the chamber, growth and division of B. subtilis vegetative cells were monitored. The observed generation times of vegetative cells were comparable to those obtained in well-aerated shake flask cultures. The influence of a heat stress of 85°C for 10 min on germination, outgrowth, and subsequent vegetative growth was investigated in detail. Compared to control samples fewer spores germinated (41.1% less) and fewer grew out (48.4% less) after the treatment. The heat treatment had a significant influence on the average time to the start of germination (increased) and the distribution and average of the duration of germination itself (increased). However, the distribution and the mean outgrowth time and the generation time of vegetative cells, emerging from untreated and thermally injured spores, were similar. PMID:23536843

  14. Roles of septins in prospore membrane morphogenesis and spore wall assembly in Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    PubMed Central

    Heasley, Lydia R.; McMurray, Michael A.

    2016-01-01

    The highly conserved family of septin proteins has important functions in cytokinesis in mitotically proliferating cells. A different form of cytokinesis occurs during gametogenesis in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, in which four haploid meiotic products become encased by prospore membrane (PSMs) and specialized, stress-resistant spore walls. Septins are known to localize in a series of structures near the growing PSM, but previous studies noted only mild sporulation defects upon septin mutation. We report that directed PSM extension fails in many septin-mutant cells, and, for those that do succeed, walls are abnormal, leading to increased susceptibility to heating, freezing, and digestion by the Drosophila gut. Septin mutants mislocalize the leading-edge protein (LEP) complex required for normal PSM and wall biogenesis, and ectopic expression of the LEP protein Ssp1 perturbs mitotic septin localization and function, suggesting a functional interaction. Strikingly, extra copies of septin CDC10 rescue sporulation and LEP localization in cells lacking Sma1, a phospholipase D–associated protein dispensable for initiation of PSM assembly and PSM curvature but required for PSM extension. These findings point to key septin functions in directing efficient membrane and cell wall synthesis during budding yeast gametogenesis. PMID:26680739

  15. Roles of septins in prospore membrane morphogenesis and spore wall assembly in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    PubMed

    Heasley, Lydia R; McMurray, Michael A

    2016-02-01

    The highly conserved family of septin proteins has important functions in cytokinesis in mitotically proliferating cells. A different form of cytokinesis occurs during gametogenesis in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, in which four haploid meiotic products become encased by prospore membrane (PSMs) and specialized, stress-resistant spore walls. Septins are known to localize in a series of structures near the growing PSM, but previous studies noted only mild sporulation defects upon septin mutation. We report that directed PSM extension fails in many septin-mutant cells, and, for those that do succeed, walls are abnormal, leading to increased susceptibility to heating, freezing, and digestion by the Drosophila gut. Septin mutants mislocalize the leading-edge protein (LEP) complex required for normal PSM and wall biogenesis, and ectopic expression of the LEP protein Ssp1 perturbs mitotic septin localization and function, suggesting a functional interaction. Strikingly, extra copies of septin CDC10 rescue sporulation and LEP localization in cells lacking Sma1, a phospholipase D-associated protein dispensable for initiation of PSM assembly and PSM curvature but required for PSM extension. These findings point to key septin functions in directing efficient membrane and cell wall synthesis during budding yeast gametogenesis. PMID:26680739

  16. Effect of washing on identification of Bacillus spores by principal-component analysis of fluorescence data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kunnil, Joseph; Sarasanandarajah, Sivananthan; Chacko, Easaw; Reinisch, Lou

    2006-05-01

    The fluorescence spectra of Bacillus spores are measured at excitation wavelengths of 280, 310, 340, 370, and 400 nm. When cluster analysis is used with the principal-component analysis, the Bacillus globigii spores can be distinguished from the other species of Bacillus spores (B. cereus, B. popilliae, and B. thuringiensis). To test how robust the identification process is with the fluorescence spectra, the B. globigii is obtained from three separate preparations in different laboratories. Furthermore the fluorescence is measured before and after washing and redrying the B. globigii spores. Using the cluster analysis of the first two or three principal components of the fluorescence spectra, one is able to distinguish B. globigii spores from the other species, independent of preparing or washing the spores.

  17. Effect of ultrasonic waves on the heat resistance of Bacillus cereus and Bacillus licheniformis spores.

    PubMed

    Burgos, J; Ordóñez, J A; Sala, F

    1972-09-01

    Heat resistance of Bacillus cereus and Bacillus licheniformis spores in quarter-strength Ringer solution decreases markedly after ultrasonic treatments which are unable to kill a significant proportion of the spore population. This effect does not seem to be caused by a loss of Ca(2+) or dipicolinic acid. The use of ultrasonics to eliminate vegetative cells or to break aggregates in Bacillus spore suspensions to be used subsequently in heat resistance experiments appears to be unadvisable. PMID:4627969

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

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

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

  19. Environmental microbiology as related to planetary quarantine. [water activity and temperature effects on bacterial spore survival

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pflug, I. J.

    1972-01-01

    The survival of Bacillus subtilis var. niger spores suspended in solutions of sucrose and glycerol at calculated water activities and varying temperatures was studied. The overall results indicated that as the water activity of the liquid decreased from .99 to .85, the heat resistance of the spores increased. The nature of the substance controlling the water activity, and the history of the spores prior to treatment also had an affect on their heat resistance.

  20. Genome-Wide Analysis of Cell Type-Specific Gene Transcription during Spore Formation in Clostridium difficile

    PubMed Central

    Saujet, Laure; Soutourina, Olga; Monot, Marc; Shelyakin, Pavel V.; Gelfand, Mikhail S.; Dupuy, Bruno; Henriques, Adriano O.; Martin-Verstraete, Isabelle

    2013-01-01

    Clostridium difficile, a Gram positive, anaerobic, spore-forming bacterium is an emergent pathogen and the most common cause of nosocomial diarrhea. Although transmission of C. difficile is mediated by contamination of the gut by spores, the regulatory cascade controlling spore formation remains poorly characterized. During Bacillus subtilis sporulation, a cascade of four sigma factors, σF and σG in the forespore and σE and σK in the mother cell governs compartment-specific gene expression. In this work, we combined genome wide transcriptional analyses and promoter mapping to define the C. difficile σF, σE, σG and σK regulons. We identified about 225 genes under the control of these sigma factors: 25 in the σF regulon, 97 σE-dependent genes, 50 σG-governed genes and 56 genes under σK control. A significant fraction of genes in each regulon is of unknown function but new candidates for spore coat proteins could be proposed as being synthesized under σE or σK control and detected in a previously published spore proteome. SpoIIID of C. difficile also plays a pivotal role in the mother cell line of expression repressing the transcription of many members of the σE regulon and activating sigK expression. Global analysis of developmental gene expression under the control of these sigma factors revealed deviations from the B. subtilis model regarding the communication between mother cell and forespore in C. difficile. We showed that the expression of the σE regulon in the mother cell was not strictly under the control of σF despite the fact that the forespore product SpoIIR was required for the processing of pro-σE. In addition, the σK regulon was not controlled by σG in C. difficile in agreement with the lack of pro-σK processing. This work is one key step to obtain new insights about the diversity and evolution of the sporulation process among Firmicutes. PMID:24098137

  1. Genome-wide analysis of cell type-specific gene transcription during spore formation in Clostridium difficile.

    PubMed

    Saujet, Laure; Pereira, Fátima C; Serrano, Monica; Soutourina, Olga; Monot, Marc; Shelyakin, Pavel V; Gelfand, Mikhail S; Dupuy, Bruno; Henriques, Adriano O; Martin-Verstraete, Isabelle

    2013-01-01

    Clostridium difficile, a Gram positive, anaerobic, spore-forming bacterium is an emergent pathogen and the most common cause of nosocomial diarrhea. Although transmission of C. difficile is mediated by contamination of the gut by spores, the regulatory cascade controlling spore formation remains poorly characterized. During Bacillus subtilis sporulation, a cascade of four sigma factors, σ(F) and σ(G) in the forespore and σ(E) and σ(K) in the mother cell governs compartment-specific gene expression. In this work, we combined genome wide transcriptional analyses and promoter mapping to define the C. difficile σ(F), σ(E), σ(G) and σ(K) regulons. We identified about 225 genes under the control of these sigma factors: 25 in the σ(F) regulon, 97 σ(E)-dependent genes, 50 σ(G)-governed genes and 56 genes under σ(K) control. A significant fraction of genes in each regulon is of unknown function but new candidates for spore coat proteins could be proposed as being synthesized under σ(E) or σ(K) control and detected in a previously published spore proteome. SpoIIID of C. difficile also plays a pivotal role in the mother cell line of expression repressing the transcription of many members of the σ(E) regulon and activating sigK expression. Global analysis of developmental gene expression under the control of these sigma factors revealed deviations from the B. subtilis model regarding the communication between mother cell and forespore in C. difficile. We showed that the expression of the σ(E) regulon in the mother cell was not strictly under the control of σ(F) despite the fact that the forespore product SpoIIR was required for the processing of pro-σ(E). In addition, the σ(K) regulon was not controlled by σ(G) in C. difficile in agreement with the lack of pro-σ(K) processing. This work is one key step to obtain new insights about the diversity and evolution of the sporulation process among Firmicutes. PMID:24098137

  2. The C-Terminal Zwitterionic Sequence of CotB1 Is Essential for Biosilicification of the Bacillus cereus Spore Coat

    PubMed Central

    Motomura, Kei; Matsuyama, Satoshi; Abdelhamid, Mohamed A. A.; Tanaka, Tatsuya; Ishida, Takenori; Hirota, Ryuichi; Kuroda, Akio

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Silica is deposited in and around the spore coat layer of Bacillus cereus, and enhances the spore's acid resistance. Several peptides and proteins, including diatom silaffin and silacidin peptides, are involved in eukaryotic silica biomineralization (biosilicification). Homologous sequence search revealed a silacidin-like sequence in the C-terminal region of CotB1, a spore coat protein of B. cereus. The negatively charged silacidin-like sequence is followed by a positively charged arginine-rich sequence of 14 amino acids, which is remarkably similar to the silaffins. These sequences impart a zwitterionic character to the C terminus of CotB1. Interestingly, the cotB1 gene appears to form a bicistronic operon with its paralog, cotB2, the product of which, however, lacks the C-terminal zwitterionic sequence. A ΔcotB1B2 mutant strain grew as fast and formed spores at the same rate as wild-type bacteria but did not show biosilicification. Complementation analysis showed that CotB1, but neither CotB2 nor C-terminally truncated mutants of CotB1, could restore the biosilicification activity in the ΔcotB1B2 mutant, suggesting that the C-terminal zwitterionic sequence of CotB1 is essential for the process. We found that the kinetics of CotB1 expression, as well as its localization, correlated well with the time course of biosilicification and the location of the deposited silica. To our knowledge, this is the first report of a protein directly involved in prokaryotic biosilicification. IMPORTANCE Biosilicification is the process by which organisms incorporate soluble silicate in the form of insoluble silica. Although the mechanisms underlying eukaryotic biosilicification have been intensively investigated, prokaryotic biosilicification was not studied until recently. We previously demonstrated that biosilicification occurs in Bacillus cereus and its close relatives, and that silica is deposited in and around a spore coat layer as a protective coating against acid

  3. Mechanistic studies of the radical SAM enzyme spore photoproduct lyase (SPL).

    PubMed

    Li, Lei

    2012-11-01

    Spore photoproduct lyase (SPL) repairs a special thymine dimer 5-thyminyl-5,6-dihydrothymine, which is commonly called spore photoproduct or SP at the bacterial early germination phase. SP is the exclusive DNA photo-damage product in bacterial endospores; its generation and swift repair by SPL are responsible for the spores' extremely high UV resistance. The early in vivo studies suggested that SPL utilizes a direct reversal strategy to repair the SP in the absence of light. The research in the past decade further established SPL as a radical SAM enzyme, which utilizes a tri-cysteine CXXXCXXC motif to harbor a [4Fe-4S] cluster. At the 1+ oxidation state, the cluster provides an electron to the S-adenosylmethionine (SAM), which binds to the cluster in a bidentate manner as the fourth and fifth ligands, to reductively cleave the CS bond associated with the sulfonium ion in SAM, generating a reactive 5'-deoxyadenosyl (5'-dA) radical. This 5'-dA radical abstracts the proR hydrogen atom from the C6 carbon of SP to initiate the repair process; the resulting SP radical subsequently fragments to generate a putative thymine methyl radical, which accepts a back-donated H atom to yield the repaired TpT. SAM is suggested to be regenerated at the end of each catalytic cycle; and only a catalytic amount of SAM is needed in the SPL reaction. The H atom source for the back donation step is suggested to be a cysteine residue (C141 in Bacillus subtilis SPL), and the H-atom transfer reaction leaves a thiyl radical behind on the protein. This thiyl radical thus must participate in the SAM regeneration process; however how the thiyl radical abstracts an H atom from the 5'-dA to regenerate SAM is unknown. This paper reviews and discusses the history and the latest progress in the mechanistic elucidation of SPL. Despite some recent breakthroughs, more questions are raised in the mechanistic understanding of this intriguing DNA repair enzyme. This article is part of a Special Issue

  4. Non-Seasonal Variation of Airborne Aspergillus Spore Concentration in a Hospital Building.

    PubMed

    Oberle, Michael; Reichmuth, Markus; Laffer, Reto; Ottiger, Cornelia; Fankhauser, Hans; Bregenzer, Thomas

    2015-11-01

    Nosocomial fungal infections are gaining increased attention from infectiologists. An adequate investigation into the levels of airborne Aspergillus and other fungal spores in hospital settings, under normal conditions, is largely unknown. We monitored airborne spore contamination in a Swiss hospital building in order to establish a seasonally-dependent base-line level. Air was sampled using an impaction technique, twice weekly, at six different locations over one year. Specimens were seeded in duplicate on Sabouraud agar plates. Grown colonies were identified to genus levels. The airborne Aspergillus spore concentration was constantly low throughout the whole year, at a median level of 2 spores/m³ (inter-quartile range = IQR 1-4), and displayed no seasonal dependency. The median concentration of other fungal spores was higher and showed a distinct seasonal variability with the ambient temperature change during the different seasons: 82 spores/m³ (IQR 26-126) in summer and 9 spores/m³ (IQR 6-15) in winter. The spore concentration varied considerably between the six sampling sites in the building (10 to 26 spores/m³). This variability may explain the variability of study results in the literature. PMID:26516890

  5. Rapid inactivation of Penicillium digitatum spores using high-density nonequilibrium atmospheric pressure plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Iseki, Sachiko; Hori, Masaru; Ohta, Takayuki; Aomatsu, Akiyoshi; Ito, Masafumi; Kano, Hiroyuki; Higashijima, Yasuhiro

    2010-04-12

    A promising, environmentally safe method for inactivating fungal spores of Penicillium digitatum, a difficult-to-inactivate food spoilage microorganism, was developed using a high-density nonequilibrium atmospheric pressure plasma (NEAPP). The NEAPP employing Ar gas had a high electron density on the order of 10{sup 15} cm{sup -3}. The spores were successfully and rapidly inactivated using the NEAPP, with a decimal reduction time in spores (D value) of 1.7 min. The contributions of ozone and UV radiation on the inactivation of the spores were evaluated and concluded to be not dominant, which was fundamentally different from the conventional sterilizations.

  6. Effect of inhibitors of trypsin-like proteolytic enzymes Bacillus cereus T spore germination.

    PubMed Central

    Boschwitz, H; Milner, Y; Keynan, A; Halvorson, H O; Troll, W

    1983-01-01

    The germination of Bacillus cereus T spore suspensions is partially prevented by several inhibitors of trypsin-like enzymes. Leupeptin, antipain, and tosyl-lysine-chloromethyl ketone are effective inhibitors, whereas chymostatin, elastatinal, and pepstatin are inactive. A synthetic substrate of trypsin, tosyl-arginine-methyl ester, also inhibits germination. Its inhibitory effect decreases as a function of incubation time in the presence of spores and is abolished by previous hydrolysis with trypsin. Germinating, but not dormant, spore suspensions hydrolyze tosyl-arginine-methyl ester; its hydrolysis is insensitive to chloramphenicol, sulfhydryl reagents, and EDTA. A crude extract of germinated B. cereus spores contains a trypsin-like enzyme whose activity, as measured by hydrolysis of benzoyl-arginine p-nitroanilide, is sensitive to germination-inhibitory compounds such as leupeptin, tosyl-arginine-methyl ester, and tosyl-lysine-chloromethyl ketone. Spore suspensions exposed to the above inhibitors under germination conditions lose only part of their heat resistance and some 10 to 30% of their dipicolinic acid content. Part of the germinating spore population becomes "phase grey" under phase optics. Based on a study of the inhibition of germination by protease inhibitors and the activity of a protease in germination spores and spore extracts, it is suggested that the activity of a trypsin-like enzyme may be involved in the mechanism of the breaking of dormancy in spores of B. cereus T. PMID:6401704

  7. Non-Seasonal Variation of Airborne Aspergillus Spore Concentration in a Hospital Building

    PubMed Central

    Oberle, Michael; Reichmuth, Markus; Laffer, Reto; Ottiger, Cornelia; Fankhauser, Hans; Bregenzer, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    Nosocomial fungal infections are gaining increased attention from infectiologists. An adequate investigation into the levels of airborne Aspergillus and other fungal spores in hospital settings, under normal conditions, is largely unknown. We monitored airborne spore contamination in a Swiss hospital building in order to establish a seasonally-dependent base-line level. Air was sampled using an impaction technique, twice weekly, at six different locations over one year. Specimens were seeded in duplicate on Sabouraud agar plates. Grown colonies were identified to genus levels. The airborne Aspergillus spore concentration was constantly low throughout the whole year, at a median level of 2 spores/m3 (inter-quartile range = IQR 1–4), and displayed no seasonal dependency. The median concentration of other fungal spores was higher and showed a distinct seasonal variability with the ambient temperature change during the different seasons: 82 spores/m3 (IQR 26–126) in summer and 9 spores/m3 (IQR 6–15) in winter. The spore concentration varied considerably between the six sampling sites in the building (10 to 26 spores/m3). This variability may explain the variability of study results in the literature. PMID:26516890

  8. Fungal spore content of the atmosphere of the Cave of Nerja (southern Spain): diversity and origin.

    PubMed

    Docampo, Silvia; Trigo, M Mar; Recio, Marta; Melgar, Marta; García-Sánchez, José; Cabezudo, Baltasar

    2011-01-15

    Fungal spores are of great interest in aerobiology and allergy due to their high incidence in both outdoor and indoor environments and their widely recognized ability to cause respiratory diseases and other pathologies. In this work, we study the spore content of the atmosphere of the Cave of Nerja, a karstic cavity and an important tourist attraction situated on the eastern coast of Malaga (southern Spain), which receives more than half a million visitors every year. This study was carried out over an uninterrupted period of 4 years (2002-2005) with the aid of two Hirst-type volumetric pollen traps (Lanzoni VPPS 2000) situated in different halls of the cave. In the atmosphere of the Cave of Nerja, 72 different spore types were detected during the studied period and daily mean concentrations of up to 282,195 spores/m(3) were reached. Thirty-five of the spore types detected are included within Ascomycota and Basidiomycota (19 and 16 types, respectively). Of the remaining spore types, 32 were categorized within the group of so-called imperfect fungi, while Oomycota and Myxomycota were represented by 2 and 3 spore types, respectively. Aspergillus/Penicillium was the most abundant spore type with a yearly mean percentage that represented 50% of the total, followed by Cladosporium. Finally, the origin of the fungal spores found inside the cave is discussed on the basis of the indoor/outdoor concentrations and the seasonal behaviour observed. PMID:21138779

  9. Live/Dead Bacterial Spore Assay Using DPA-Triggered Tb Luminescence

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ponce, Adrian

    2003-01-01

    A method of measuring the fraction of bacterial spores in a sample that remain viable exploits DPA-triggered luminescence of Tb(3+) and is based partly on the same principles as those described earlier. Unlike prior methods for performing such live/dead assays of bacterial spores, this method does not involve counting colonies formed by cultivation (which can take days), or counting of spores under a microscope, and works whether or not bacterial spores are attached to other small particles (i.e., dust), and can be implemented on a time scale of about 20 minutes.

  10. Correlation of spring spore concentrations and meteorological conditions in Tulsa, Oklahoma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Troutt, C.; Levetin, E.

    Different spore types are abundant in the atmosphere depending on the weather conditions. Ascospores generally follow precipitation, while spore types such as Alternaria and Cladosporium are abundant in dry conditions. This project attempted to correlate fungal spore concentrations with meteorological data from Tulsa, Oklahoma during May 1998 and May 1999. Air samples were collected and analyzed by the 12-traverse method. The spore types included were Cladosporium, Alternaria, Epicoccum, Curvularia, Pithomyces, Drechslera, smut spores, ascospores, basidiospores, and other spores. Weather variables included precipitation levels, temperature, dew point, air pressure, wind speed, wind direction and wind gusts. There were over 242.57 mm of rainfall in May 1999 and only 64.01 mm in May 1998. The most abundant spore types during May 1998 and May 1999 were Cladosporium, ascospores, and basidiospores. Results showed that there were significant differences in the dry-air spora between May 1998 and May 1999. There were twice as many Cladosporium in May 1998 as in May 1999; both ascospores and basidiospores showed little change. Multiple regression analysis was used to determine which meteorological variables influenced spore concentrations. Results showed that there was no single model for all spore types. Different combinations of factors were predictors of concentration for the various fungi examined; however, temperature and dew point seemed to be the most important meteorological factors.

  11. Effects of microbial loading and sporulation temperature on atmospheric plasma inactivation of Bacillus subtilis spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deng, X. T.; Shi, J. J.; Shama, G.; Kong, M. G.

    2005-10-01

    Current inactivation studies of Bacillus subtilis spores using atmospheric-pressure glow discharges (APGD) do not consider two important factors, namely microbial loading at the surface of a substrate and sporulation temperature. Yet these are known to affect significantly microbial resistance to heat and hydrogen peroxide. This letter investigates effects of microbial loading and sporulation temperature on spore resistance to APGD. It is shown that microbial loading can lead to a stacking structure as a protective shield against APGD treatment and that high sporulation temperature increases spore resistance by altering core water content and cross-linked muramic acid content of B. subtilis spores.

  12. Effects of meteorological factors on the levels of Alternaria spores on a potato crop

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Escuredo, Olga; Seijo, Maria Carmen; Fernández-González, Maria; Iglesias, Isabel

    2011-03-01

    Alternaria solani Soraeur produces early blight in Solanum tuberosum L., leading to significant agricultural losses. The current study was carried out on the extensive potato crop situated in north-western of Spain during 2007, 2008 and 2009. In this area potato crops are the most important source of income. In this work we used a Hirst-type volumetric spore-trap for the aerobiological monitoring of Alternaria spores. The highest spore concentrations were recorded during the 2009 cycle (10,555 spores), and the lowest concentrations were recorded during the 2008 cycle (5,471 spores). Over the 3 years of study, the highest concentrations were registered during the last stage of the crop. The aim of the study was to observe the influence of meteorological factors on the concentration of Alternaria spores, which can lead to serious infection and early blight. Prediction of the stages during which a crop is particularly vulnerable to infection allows for adjustment of the application of fungicide and is of environmental and agricultural importance. For this reason, we tested three models (P-Days, DD and IWP) to predict the first treatment and decrease the negative effect that these spores have on potato crops. The parameter that showed the most significant correlation with spore concentrations was minimum temperature. We used ARIMA (autoregressive integrated model of running mean) time-series models to determine the forecast. We considered weather data as predictor variables and the concentration of spores on the previous day as the fixed variable.

  13. Fungal spores are transported long distances in smoke from biomass fires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mims, Sarah A.; Mims, Forrest M.

    Viable fungal spores are present in smoke from distant biomass fires. This finding has potentially important implications for prescribed burning, agricultural management and public health. While attempting to find fungal spores in dust blown from China to Texas, one of us (S.A.M.) discovered that smoke from Yucatan contains viable bacteria and fungal spores, including the genera Alternaria, Cladosporium, Fusariella and Curvularia. There was a high correlation ( r2=0.78) of spores and coarse carbon particles collected on microscope slides during 13 days of the 2002 smoke season. To eliminate possible contamination by local spores, an air sampler was flown from a kite at a Texas Gulf Coast beach during and after the 2003 smoke season on days when the NOAA back trajectory showed air arriving from Yucatan. Fifty-two spores and 19 coarse black carbon particles (>2.5 μm) were collected during a 30-min kite flight on the smoke day and 12 spores and four carbons on the day without smoke. We have found spores in smoke from an Arizona forest fire and in Asian smoke at Mauna Loa Observatory, Hawaii. We have tested these findings by burning dried grass, leaves, twigs and flood detritus. The smoke from all test fires contained many spores.

  14. Utilization of Low-Pressure Plasma to Inactivate Bacterial Spores on Stainless Steel Screws

    PubMed Central

    Stapelmann, Katharina; Fiebrandt, Marcel; Raguse, Marina; Awakowicz, Peter; Reitz, Günther

    2013-01-01

    Abstract A special focus area of planetary protection is the monitoring, control, and reduction of microbial contaminations that are detected on spacecraft components and hardware during and after assembly. In this study, wild-type spores of Bacillus pumilus SAFR-032 (a persistent spacecraft assembly facility isolate) and the laboratory model organism B. subtilis 168 were used to study the effects of low-pressure plasma, with hydrogen alone and in combination with oxygen and evaporated hydrogen peroxide as a process gas, on spore survival, which was determined by a colony formation assay. Spores of B. pumilus SAFR-032 and B. subtilis 168 were deposited with an aseptic technique onto the surface of stainless steel screws to simulate a spore-contaminated spacecraft hardware component, and were subsequently exposed to different plasmas and hydrogen peroxide conditions in a very high frequency capacitively coupled plasma reactor (VHF-CCP) to reduce the spore burden. Spores of the spacecraft isolate B. pumilus SAFR-032 were significantly more resistant to plasma treatment than spores of B. subtilis 168. The use of low-pressure plasma with an additional treatment of evaporated hydrogen peroxide also led to an enhanced spore inactivation that surpassed either single treatment when applied alone, which indicates the potential application of this method as a fast and suitable way to reduce spore-contaminated spacecraft hardware components for planetary protection purposes. Key Words: Bacillus spores—Contamination—Spacecraft hardware—Plasma sterilization—Planetary protection. Astrobiology 13, 597–606. PMID:23768085

  15. Revival of Bacillus subtilis spores from biocide-induced injury in the germination process.

    PubMed

    Williams, N D; Russell, A D

    1993-07-01

    Spores of Bacillus subtilis NCTC 8236 were treated with glutaraldehyde, Lugol's iodine, polyvinylpyrrolidone-iodine (PVP-I), sodium hypochlorite or sodium dichloroisocyanurate (NaDCC). After exposure survivors were enumerated on nutrient agar containing potential revival agents (subtilisin, lysozyme, calcium dipicolinate, calcium lactate). Of these, only calcium lactate had any significant enhancing effect and then only with iodine-treated spores. Calcium lactate (9 mmol l-1) in nutrient broth enhanced the rate and extent of germination of iodine-treated spores but not of spores previously subjected to glutaraldehyde, hypochlorite or NaDCC. PMID:8396079

  16. Evaluation of germination, distribution, and persistence of Bacillus subtilis spores through the gastrointestinal tract of chickens.

    PubMed

    Latorre, J D; Hernandez-Velasco, X; Kallapura, G; Menconi, A; Pumford, N R; Morgan, M J; Layton, S L; Bielke, L R; Hargis, B M; Téllez, G

    2014-07-01

    Spores are popular as direct-fed microbials, though little is known about their mode of action. Hence, the first objective of the present study was to evaluate the in vitro germination and growth rate of Bacillus subtilis spores. Approximately 90% of B. subtilis spores germinate within 60 min in the presence of feed in vitro. The second objective was to determine the distribution of these spores throughout different anatomical segments of the gastrointestinal tract (GIT) in a chicken model. For in vivo evaluation of persistence and dissemination, spores were administered to day-of-hatch broiler chicks either as a single gavage dose or constantly in the feed. During 2 independent experiments, chicks were housed in isolation chambers and fed sterile corn-soy-based diets. In these experiments one group of chickens was supplemented with 10(6) spores/g of feed, whereas a second group was gavaged with a single dose of 10(6) spores per chick on day of hatch. In both experiments, crop, ileum, and cecae were sampled from 5 chicks at 24, 48, 72, 96, and 120 h. Viable B. subtilis spores were determined by plate count method after heat treatment (75°C for 10 min). The number of recovered spores was constant through 120 h in each of the enteric regions from chickens receiving spores supplemented in the feed. However, the number of recovered B. subtilis spores was consistently about 10(5) spores per gram of digesta, which is about a 1-log10 reduction of the feed inclusion rate, suggesting approximately a 90% germination rate in the GIT when fed. On the other hand, recovered B. subtilis spores from chicks that received a single gavage dose decreased with time, with only approximately 10(2) spores per gram of sample by 120 h. This confirms that B. subtilis spores are transiently present in the GIT of chickens, but the persistence of vegetative cells is presently unknown. For persistent benefit, continuous administration of effective B. subtilis direct-fed microbials as vegetative

  17. Bacillus spores and their relevant chemicals studied by terahertz time domain spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, Jianhua; Yang, Bin; Llewellyn, Ian; Cutler, Ronald R.; Donnan, Robert S.

    2014-01-01

    Terahertz time domain spectroscopy has been used to investigate 0.2-2.2 THz transmission responses of Bacillus spores and their related chemical components. Whilst no THz signatures could be clearly associated with either sporulated cells or their chief chemical components, differing degrees of signal attenua