About OpenKnowledge@NAU | For NAU Authors

A genomic survey of positive selection in Burkholderia pseudomallei provides insights into the evolution of accidental virulence

Nandi, Tannistha and Ong, Catherine and Pratap Singh, Arvind and Boddey, Justin and Atkins, Timothy and Sarkar-Tyson, Mitali and Essex-Lopresti, Angela E. and Hui Hoon Chua, Angela E. and Pearson, Talima and Kreisberg, Jason F. and Nilsson, Christina and Ariyaratne, Pramila and Ronning, Catherine and Losada, Liliana and Yijun Ruan, Liliana and Wing-Kin Sung, Liliana and Woods, Donald and Titball, Richard W. and Beacham, Ifor and Peak, Ian and Keim, Paul and Nierman, William C. and Tan, Patrick (2010) A genomic survey of positive selection in Burkholderia pseudomallei provides insights into the evolution of accidental virulence. PLoS Pathogens, 6 (4). e1000845. ISSN 1553-7366

Available under License Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication.

Download (2MB) | Preview
Publisher’s or external URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.ppat.1000845


Certain environmental microorganisms can cause severe human infections, even in the absence of an obvious requirement for transition through an animal host for replication ("accidental virulence"). To understand this process, we compared eleven isolate genomes of Burkholderia pseudomallei (Bp), a tropical soil microbe and causative agent of the human and animal disease melioidosis. We found evidence for the existence of several new genes in the Bp reference genome, identifying 282 novel genes supported by at least two independent lines of supporting evidence (mRNA transcripts, database homologs, and presence of ribosomal binding sites) and 81 novel genes supported by all three lines. Within the Bp core genome, 211 genes exhibited significant levels of positive selection (4.5%), distributed across many cellular pathways including carbohydrate and secondary metabolism. Functional experiments revealed that certain positively selected genes might enhance mammalian virulence by interacting with host cellular pathways or utilizing host nutrients. Evolutionary modifications improving Bp environmental fitness may thus have indirectly facilitated the ability of Bp to colonize and survive in mammalian hosts. These findings improve our understanding of the pathogenesis of melioidosis, and establish Bp as a model system for studying the genetics of accidental virulence.

Item Type: Article
ID number or DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1000845
Keywords: bacterial; causative agent; escherichia-coli; identification; lateral gene-transfer; Meliodoisis; pan-genome; pathogenicity; sequences; System
NAU Depositing Author Academic Status: Faculty/Staff
Department/Unit: Research Centers > Center for Microbial Genetics and Genomics
Date Deposited: 18 Oct 2015 19:27
URI: http://openknowledge.nau.edu/id/eprint/1684

Actions (login required)

IR Staff Record View IR Staff Record View


Downloads per month over past year