research highlights BACTERIAL GENOMICS Nat. Genet. 50, 138–150 (2018) Of these, 1,160 genomes are plant- associated. Compared with non-plant- associated bacteria, plant-associated bacteria displayed a genomic expansion of carbohydrate metabolism and transport genes, and shrinkage of mobile elements. Thousands of putative plant-associated gene clusters were identified by comparing phylogenetically related genomes isolated from different environments and then validated by computational and experimental approaches. For example, two genes were experimentally shown to control bacterial colonization. Some plant- associated gene clusters captured known plant-associated operons, such as those related to root nodulation and gibberellin biosynthesis, whereas others captured Credit: Diekleinert / Alamy Stock Photo novel putative plant-associated operons, such as those that encode the novel type VI effector Hyde protein that kills other Plant–bacteria interactions are important plant-associated bacteria and may mediate for agricultural production and plant competition among plant-associated conservation due to their profound microorganisms. The co-occurrence of effects on plant growth and productivity. many plant-associated gene clusters in Plant-associated genes that evolved in multiple distant taxa suggests inter-taxon bacteria over hundreds of millions of horizontal gene transfers have taken place. years of adaptation are important for such Hundreds of plant-associated domains interactions. However, these genes remain were identified as being reproducibly poorly understood. Using a comparative enriched in multiple bacterial taxa, genomics approach, Asaf Levy, from the 64 of which mimicked plant domains. US Department of Energy Joint Genome In many cases, these domains showed Institute, Isai Salas Gonzalez, from the a high homology with proteins from plant- University of North Carolina at Chapel associated oomycetes and fungi, indicating Hill, and their colleagues identified plant- convergent evolution or horizontal gene associated (and root-associated) genes and transfer between evolutionarily distant tried to characterize their functions. microorganisms — probably driven by The researchers sequenced 484 genomes similar selective forces. of bacterial isolates from the roots of Jun Lyu Brassicaceae, poplar and maize; these sequences were then combined with existing publicly available bacterial genomes, Published online: 29 January 2018 resulting in a data set of 3,837 genomes. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41477-018-0110-4 NATuRE PLANTS | VOL 4 | FEBRUARY 2018 | 60 | www.nature.com/natureplants © 2018 Macmillan Publishers Limited, part of Springer Nature. All rights reserved. © 2018 Macmillan Publishers Limited, part of Springer Nature. All rights reserved.
Nature Plants – Springer Journals
Published: Jan 29, 2018
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