Journal Article

Complete Bacteriophage Transfer in a Bacterial Endosymbiont (<i>Wolbachia</i>) Determined by Targeted Genome Capture

Bethany N. Kent, Leonidas Salichos, John G. Gibbons, Antonis Rokas, Irene L. G. Newton, Michael E. Clark and Seth R. Bordenstein

in Genome Biology and Evolution

Published on behalf of Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution

Volume 3, issue , pages 209-218
Published in print January 2011 |
Published online February 2011 | e-ISSN: 1759-6653 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/gbe/evr007

More Like This

Show all results sharing these subjects:

  • Bioinformatics and Computational Biology
  • Evolutionary Biology
  • Genetics and Genomics

GO

Show Summary Details

Preview

Bacteriophage flux can cause the majority of genetic diversity in free-living bacteria. This tenet of bacterial genome evolution generally does not extend to obligate intracellular bacteria owing to their reduced contact with other microbes and a predominance of gene deletion over gene transfer. However, recent studies suggest intracellular coinfections in the same host can facilitate exchange of mobile elements between obligate intracellular bacteria—a means by which these bacteria can partially mitigate the reductive forces of the intracellular lifestyle. To test whether bacteriophages transfer as single genes or larger regions between coinfections, we sequenced the genome of the obligate intracellular Wolbachia strain wVitB from the parasitic wasp Nasonia vitripennis and compared it against the prophage sequences of the divergent wVitA coinfection. We applied, for the first time, a targeted sequence capture array to specifically trap the symbiont's DNA from a heterogeneous mixture of eukaryotic, bacterial, and viral DNA. The tiled array successfully captured the genome with 98.3% efficiency. Examination of the genome sequence revealed the largest transfer of bacteriophage and flanking genes (52.2 kb) to date between two obligate intracellular coinfections. The mobile element transfer occurred in the recent evolutionary past based on the 99.9% average nucleotide identity of the phage sequences between the two strains. In addition to discovering an evolutionary recent and large-scale horizontal phage transfer between coinfecting obligate intracellular bacteria, we demonstrate that “targeted genome capture” can enrich target DNA to alleviate the problem of isolating symbiotic microbes that are difficult to culture or purify from the conglomerate of organisms inside eukaryotes.

Keywords: horizontal gene transfer; endosymbiont; intracellular

Journal Article.  5972 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Bioinformatics and Computational Biology ; Evolutionary Biology ; Genetics and Genomics

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.