mSphere

The Research Publications track research that is published across national and international peer-reviewed journals. The most recent articles are available ahead of print and searchable by Journal Title, Subject, USDA Grant Funding Agencies or FDA Grant Funding Agencies. The research publications are tracked across five subject areas: Bacterial Pathogens, Chemical Contaminants, Natural Toxins, Parasites, and Viruses.

Thu, 04/02/2020 - 03:22
ABSTRACT Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) is a major diarrheal pathogen in children in low- to middle-income countries. Previous studies have identified heat-stable enterotoxin (ST)-producing ETEC as one of the major diarrhea-causing pathogens in children younger than five years. In this study, we examined iron and zinc binding by both human and porcine ST variants and determined how host...
Thu, 03/26/2020 - 03:24
ABSTRACT Klebsiella pneumoniae carbapenemase (KPC)-producing Enterobacteriaceae have become widespread in hospitals and the environment. Here, we describe a blaKPC-2-carrying plasmid called pCRE3-KPC, which was recovered from a clinical multidrug-resistant Citrobacter braakii CRE3 strain in China. The complete nucleotide sequence of pCRE3-KPC was determined by combining MiSeq and MinION...
Thu, 03/19/2020 - 03:23
ABSTRACT Vibrio parahaemolyticus is a Gram-negative halophilic pathogen that frequently causes acute gastroenteritis and occasional wound infection. V. parahaemolyticus contains several virulence factors, including type III secretion systems (T3SSs) and thermostable direct hemolysin (TDH). In particular, T3SS1 is a potent cytotoxic inducer, and T3SS2 is essential for causing acute gastroenteritis...
Thu, 03/19/2020 - 03:23
ABSTRACT Substantial concentrations of penicillin V potassium (PVK) have been found in livestock manure, soil, and wastewater effluents, which may pose potential threats to human health and contribute to the emergence of penicillin-resistant bacterial strains. In this study, bacterial strains capable of degrading PVK were isolated from sludge and characterized. Strain X-2 was selected for...
Thu, 03/19/2020 - 03:23
ABSTRACT Globally, more antimicrobials are used in food-producing animals than in humans, and the extensive use of medically important human antimicrobials poses a significant public health threat in the face of rising antimicrobial resistance (AMR). The development of novel ionophores, a class of antimicrobials used exclusively in animals, holds promise as a strategy to replace or reduce...
Thu, 03/12/2020 - 03:24
ABSTRACT The emergence of mobilized colistin resistance genes (mcr) has become a serious concern in clinical practice, compromising treatment options for life-threatening infections. In this study, colistin-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae harboring mcr-8.1 was recovered from infected patients in the largest public hospital of Bangladesh, with a prevalence of 0.3% (3/1,097). We found mcr-8.1 in an...
Thu, 03/05/2020 - 03:25
ABSTRACT Integrative mobilizable elements belonging to the SGI1-H, -K, and -L Salmonella genomic island 1 (SGI1) variant groups are distinguished by the presence of an alteration in the backbone (IS1359 replaces 2.8 kb of the backbone extending from within traN [S005] to within S009). Members of this SGI1-HKL group have been found in Salmonella enterica serovars and in Proteus mirabilis. Two...
Thu, 02/27/2020 - 03:42
ABSTRACT Neal Hammer works in the field of bacterial pathogenesis, metabolism, and antibiotic resistance. In this mSphere of Influence article, he reflects on how "Gut inflammation provides a respiratory electron acceptor for Salmonella" by Winter and colleagues (S. E. Winter, P. Thiennimitr, M. G. Winter, B. P. Butler, et al., Nature 467:426–429, 2010, https://doi.org/10.1038/nature09415)...
Thu, 02/06/2020 - 03:26
ABSTRACT While working overnight at a swine exhibition, we identified an influenza A virus (IAV) outbreak in swine, Nanopore sequenced 13 IAV genomes from samples we collected, and predicted in real time that these viruses posed a novel risk to humans due to genetic mismatches between the viruses and current prepandemic candidate vaccine viruses (CVVs). We developed and used a portable IAV...
Thu, 01/30/2020 - 03:25
ABSTRACT Dissemination of antibiotic resistance (AR) genes, often on plasmids, leads to antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections, which is a major problem for animal and public health. Bacterial conjugation is the primary route of AR gene transfer in the mammalian gastrointestinal tract. Significant gaps in knowledge about which gastrointestinal communities and host factors promote plasmid...
Thu, 01/30/2020 - 03:25
ABSTRACT Toxoplasma gondii can infect and replicate in vascular endothelial cells prior to entering host tissues. However, little is known about the molecular interactions at the parasite-endothelial cell interface. We demonstrate that T. gondii infection of primary human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC) altered cell morphology and dysregulated barrier function, increasing permeability to...
Thu, 01/23/2020 - 03:24
ABSTRACT Paenibacillus is a spore-forming bacterial genus that is frequently isolated from fluid milk and is proposed to play a role in spoilage. To characterize the genetic and phenotypic diversity of Paenibacillus spp., we first used rpoB allelic typing data for a preexisting collection of 1,228 Paenibacillus species isolates collected from raw and processed milk, milk products, and dairy...
Thu, 01/16/2020 - 03:23
ABSTRACT Campylobacter jejuni is a leading cause of bacterial diarrhea worldwide and is associated with high rates of mortality and growth stunting in children inhabiting low- to middle-resource countries. To better understand the impact of breastfeeding on Campylobacter infection in infants in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, we examined fecal microbial compositions, bacterial isolates, and...
Thu, 01/16/2020 - 03:23
ABSTRACT Carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii (CRAB) is an important opportunistic pathogen linked to a variety of nosocomial infections and hospital outbreaks worldwide. This study aimed at investigating and characterizing a CRAB outbreak at a large tertiary hospital in Lebanon. A total of 41 isolates were collected and analyzed using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). Whole-genome...
Thu, 01/16/2020 - 03:23
ABSTRACT Escherichia coli is present in multiple hosts and environmental compartments as a normal inhabitant, temporary or persistent colonizer, and as a pathogen. Transmission of E. coli between hosts and with the environment is considered to occur more often in areas with poor sanitation. We performed whole-genome comparative analyses on 60 E. coli isolates from soils and fecal sources (cattle...
Thu, 01/09/2020 - 03:42
ABSTRACT Carbapenemases confer resistance to nearly all β-lactam antibiotics. The extensive spread of carbapenemase-producing multidrug-resistant bacteria contributes significantly to hospital-acquired infections. We have developed a novel protein-based binding assay that identifies KPC β-lactamases from clinical isolates. We used the protein-protein interaction between KPCs and a...
Thu, 01/09/2020 - 03:42
ABSTRACT IS26 has been shown to form cointegrates both by a copy-in mechanism involving one insertion sequence (IS) and a target and by a targeted conservative mechanism involving two ISs. IS26 is the flagship of a group of 65 bacterial ISs in the recently redefined IS6/IS26 family. Here, whether other family members can also use two mechanisms was examined using members of the IS257/IS431 and...
Thu, 01/09/2020 - 03:42
ABSTRACT The survival ability of Salmonella enterica serovar Enteritidis in antibacterial egg white is an important factor leading to Salmonella outbreaks through eggs and egg products. In this study, the role of the gene yoaE, encoding an inner membrane protein, in the survival of Salmonella Enteritidis in egg white, and its transcriptional regulation by CpxR were investigated. Quantitative...
Thu, 12/12/2019 - 03:27
ABSTRACT The tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle is a central metabolic hub in most cells. Virulence functions of bacterial pathogens such as facultative intracellular Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium (S. Typhimurium) are closely connected to cellular metabolism. During systematic analyses of mutant strains with defects in the TCA cycle, a strain deficient in all fumarase isoforms (fumABC)...
Thu, 11/28/2019 - 03:43
ABSTRACT Vibrio cholerae is a noninvasive pathogen that colonizes the small intestine and produces cholera toxin, causing severe secretory diarrhea. Cholera results in long lasting immunity, and recent studies have improved our understanding of the antigenic repertoire of V. cholerae. Interactions between the host, V. cholerae, and the intestinal microbiome are now recognized as factors which...
Thu, 11/21/2019 - 03:25
ABSTRACT The aim of this study was to investigate the occurrence and genomic characteristics of extended-spectrum-β-lactamase-producing Escherichia coli (ESBL-EC) in fennec fox imported from Sudan to China. We screened 88 fecal samples from fennec fox for ESBL-EC, using cefotaxime- and meropenem-supplemented selective medium. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing was performed by the agar...
Thu, 11/14/2019 - 03:25
ABSTRACT The Shigella species are Gram-negative, facultative intracellular pathogens that invade the colonic epithelium and cause significant diarrheal disease. Despite extensive research on the pathogen, a comprehensive understanding of how Shigella initiates contact with epithelial cells remains unknown. Shigella maintains many of the same Escherichia coli adherence gene operons; however, at...
Thu, 11/14/2019 - 03:24
ABSTRACT O-linked protein glycosylation is a conserved feature of the Burkholderia genus. The addition of the trisaccharide β-Gal-(1,3)-α-GalNAc-(1,3)-β-GalNAc to membrane exported proteins in Burkholderia cenocepacia is required for bacterial fitness and resistance to environmental stress. However, the underlying causes of the defects observed in the absence of glycosylation are...
Thu, 11/07/2019 - 03:26
ABSTRACT In the present study, we provide the results of a detailed genomic analysis and the growth characteristics of a colistin-resistant KPC-3-producing Klebsiella pneumoniae sequence type 512 (ST512) isolate (the colR-KPC3-KP isolate) with a mutated pmrB and isogenic isolates of colR-KPC3-KP with mcr-1.2 isolated from an immunocompromised patient. From 2014 to 2017, four colR-KPC3-KP isolates...
Thu, 10/17/2019 - 03:27
ABSTRACT Gellan gum is a microbial exopolysaccharide, produced after aerobic fermentation using the Gram-negative bacterium strain Sphingomonas elodea ATCC 31461. Due to its unique structure and excellent physical characteristics, gellan gum has a broad range of applications in food, pharmaceutical, and other industries where it is used for stabilizing, emulsifying, thickening, and suspending....
Thu, 10/10/2019 - 03:29
ABSTRACT Nonmenstrual toxic shock syndrome (nmTSS), linked to TSST-1-producing CC30 Staphylococcus aureus, is the leading manifestation of toxic shock syndrome (TSS). Due to case rarity and a lack of tractable animal models, TSS pathogenesis is poorly understood. We developed an S. aureus abscess model in HLA class II transgenic mice to investigate pathogenesis and treatment. TSST-1 sensitivity...
Mon, 09/30/2019 - 16:53
ABSTRACT The occurrence of carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) poses a considerable risk for public health. The gene for Klebsiella pneumoniae carbapenemase-2 (KPC-2) has been reported in many countries worldwide, and KPC-2-producing strains are mainly of human origin. In this study, we identified two novel hybrid plasmids that carry either blaKPC-2 or the fosfomycin resistance gene...
Mon, 09/30/2019 - 16:53
ABSTRACT The opportunistic pathogenic fungus Candida albicans can cause devastating infections in immunocompromised patients. Its ability to undergo a morphogenetic transition from yeast to filamentous forms allows it to penetrate tissues and damage tissues, and the expression of genes associated with a number of pathogenetic mechanisms is also coordinately regulated with the yeast-to-hypha...
Mon, 09/30/2019 - 16:53
ABSTRACT Enteric viruses in the Caliciviridae family cause acute gastroenteritis in humans and animals, but the cellular processes needed for virus replication and disease remain unknown. A common strategy among enteric viruses, including rotaviruses and enteroviruses, is to encode a viral ion channel (i.e., viroporin) that is targeted to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and disrupts host calcium (...
Mon, 09/30/2019 - 16:53
ABSTRACT The polyketide-derived secondary metabolite ascochitine is produced by species in the Didymellaceae family, including but not restricted to Ascochyta species pathogens of cool-season food legumes. Ascochitine is structurally similar to the well-known mycotoxin citrinin and exhibits broad-spectrum phytotoxicity and antimicrobial activities. Here, we identified a polyketide synthase (PKS)...
Mon, 09/30/2019 - 16:53
ABSTRACT The continuous emergence of carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) presents a great public health challenge. Mitigation of CPE spread in the environment is crucial, particularly from a One Health perspective. Here we describe the isolation of CPE strain SNI47 from influent water of a sewage treatment plant in Japan. SNI47 was identified as Klebsiella quasipneumoniae subsp....