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Search Results: 1 - 10 of 189900 matches for " Drion G. Boucias "
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Multiple Levels of Synergistic Collaboration in Termite Lignocellulose Digestion
Michael E. Scharf,Zachary J. Karl,Amit Sethi,Drion G. Boucias
PLOS ONE , 2012, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0021709
Abstract: In addition to evolving eusocial lifestyles, two equally fascinating aspects of termite biology are their mutualistic relationships with gut symbionts and their use of lignocellulose as a primary nutrition source. Termites are also considered excellent model systems for studying the production of bioethanol and renewable bioenergy from 2nd generation (non-food) feedstocks. While the idea that gut symbionts are the sole contributors to termite lignocellulose digestion has remained popular and compelling, in recent years host contributions to the digestion process have become increasingly apparent. However, the degree to which host and symbiont, and host enzymes, collaborate in lignocellulose digestion remain poorly understood. Also, how digestive enzymes specifically collaborate (i.e., in additive or synergistic ways) is largely unknown. In the present study we undertook translational-genomic studies to gain unprecedented insights into digestion by the lower termite Reticulitermes flavipes and its symbiotic gut flora. We used a combination of native gut tissue preparations and recombinant enzymes derived from the host gut transcriptome to identify synergistic collaborations between host and symbiont, and also among enzymes produced exclusively by the host termite. Our findings provide important new evidence of synergistic collaboration among enzymes in the release of fermentable monosaccharides from wood lignocellulose. These monosaccharides (glucose and pentoses) are highly relevant to 2nd-generation bioethanol production. We also show that, although significant digestion capabilities occur in host termite tissues, catalytic tradeoffs exist that apparently favor mutualism with symbiotic lignocellulose-digesting microbes. These findings contribute important new insights towards the development of termite-derived biofuel processing biotechnologies and shed new light on selective forces that likely favored symbiosis and, subsequently, group living in primitive termites and their cockroach ancestors.
Parallel metatranscriptome analyses of host and symbiont gene expression in the gut of the termite Reticulitermes flavipes
Aurélien Tartar, Marsha M Wheeler, Xuguo Zhou, Monique R Coy, Drion G Boucias, Michael E Scharf
Biotechnology for Biofuels , 2009, DOI: 10.1186/1754-6834-2-25
Abstract: Over 10,000 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) were sequenced from the 2 libraries that aligned into 6,555 putative transcripts, including 171 putative lignocellulase genes. Sequence analyses provided insights in two areas. First, a non-overlapping complement of host and symbiont (prokaryotic plus protist) glycohydrolase gene families known to participate in cellulose, hemicellulose, alpha carbohydrate, and chitin degradation were identified. Of these, cellulases are contributed by host plus symbiont genomes, whereas hemicellulases are contributed exclusively by symbiont genomes. Second, a diverse complement of previously unknown genes that encode proteins with homology to lignase, antioxidant, and detoxification enzymes were identified exclusively from the host library (laccase, catalase, peroxidase, superoxide dismutase, carboxylesterase, cytochrome P450). Subsequently, functional analyses of phenoloxidase activity provided results that were strongly consistent with patterns of laccase gene expression. In particular, phenoloxidase activity and laccase gene expression are mostly restricted to symbiont-free foregut plus salivary gland tissues, and phenoloxidase activity is inducible by lignin feeding.To our knowledge, this is the first time that a dual host-symbiont transcriptome sequencing effort has been conducted in a single termite species. This sequence database represents an important new genomic resource for use in further studies of collaborative host-symbiont termite digestion, as well as development of coevolved host and symbiont-derived biocatalysts for use in industrial biomass-to-bioethanol applications. Additionally, this study demonstrates that: (i) phenoloxidase activities are prominent in the R. flavipes gut and are not symbiont derived, (ii) expands the known number of host and symbiont glycosyl hydrolase families in Reticulitermes, and (iii) supports previous models of lignin degradation and host-symbiont collaboration in cellulose/hemicellulose diges
A Mathematic Model That Describes Modes of MdSGHV Transmission within House Fly Populations
Celeste R. Vallejo,Jo Ann Lee,James E. Keesling,Christopher J. Geden,Verena-Ulrike Lietze,Drion G. Boucias
Insects , 2013, DOI: 10.3390/insects4040683
Abstract: In this paper it is proposed that one potential component by which the Musca domestica salivary gland hypertrophy virus (MdSGHV) infects individual flies is through cuticular damage. Breaks in the cuticle allow entry of the virus into the hemocoel causing the infection. Male flies typically have a higher rate of infection and a higher rate of cuticular damage than females. A model for the transmission of MdSGHV was formulated assuming several potential and recognized means of transmission. The model yields results that are in agreement with field data that measured the infection rate in house flies on dairy farms in Florida. The results from this model indicate that MdSGHV will be maintained at a stable rate within house fly populations and support the future use of MdSGHV as a birth control agent in house fly management.
Impact of Salivary Gland Hypertrophy Virus Infection on the Mating Success of Male Glossina pallidipes: Consequences for the Sterile Insect Technique
Gratian N. Mutika, Carmen Marin, Andrew G. Parker, Drion G. Boucias, Marc J. B. Vreysen, Adly M. M. Abd-Alla
PLOS ONE , 2012, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0042188
Abstract: Many species of tsetse flies are infected by a virus (GpSGHV) that causes salivary gland hypertrophy (SGH). Female Glossina pallidipes (Austen) with SGH symptoms (SGH+) have reduced fecundity and SGH+ male G. pallidipes are unable to inseminate female flies. Consequently, G. pallidipes laboratory colonies with a high prevalence of SGH have been difficult to maintain and have collapsed on several occasions. To assess the potential impact of the release of SGH+ sterile male G. pallidipes on the efficacy of an integrated control programme with a sterile insect technique (SIT) component, we examined the mating efficiency and behaviour of male G. pallidipes in field cages in relation to SGH prevalence. The results showed in a field cage setting a significantly reduced mating frequency of 19% for a male G. pallidipes population with a high prevalence of SGH (83%) compared to 38% for a male population with a low prevalence of SGH (7%). Premating period and mating duration did not vary significantly with SGH status. A high percentage (>80%) of females that had mated with SGH+ males had empty spermathecae. The remating frequency of female G. pallidipes was very low irrespective of the SGH status of the males in the first mating. These results indicate that a high prevalence of SGH+ in G. pallidipes not only affects colony stability and performance but, in view of their reduced mating propensity and competitiveness, releasing SGH+ sterile male G. pallidipes will reduce the efficiency of a sterile male release programme.
Transgenerational Transmission of the Glossina pallidipes Hytrosavirus Depends on the Presence of a Functional Symbiome
Drion G. Boucias, Henry M. Kariithi, Kostas Bourtzis, Daniela I. Schneider, Karen Kelley, Wolfgang J. Miller, Andrew G. Parker, Adly M. M. Abd-Alla
PLOS ONE , 2013, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0061150
Abstract: The vertically transmitted endosymbionts (Sodalis glossinidius and Wigglesworthia glossinidia) of the tsetse fly (Diptera: Glossinidae) are known to supplement dietary deficiencies and modulate the reproductive fitness and the defense system of the fly. Some tsetse fly species are also infected with the bacterium, Wolbachia and with the Glossina hytrosavirus (GpSGHV). Laboratory-bred G. pallidipes exhibit chronic asymptomatic and acute symptomatic GpSGHV infection, with the former being the most common in these colonies. However, under as yet undefined conditions, the asymptomatic state can convert to the symptomatic state, leading to detectable salivary gland hypertrophy (SGH+) syndrome. In this study, we investigated the interplay between the bacterial symbiome and GpSGHV during development of G. pallidipes by knocking down the symbionts with antibiotic. Intrahaemocoelic injection of GpSGHV led to high virus titre (109 virus copies), but was not accompanied by either the onset of detectable SGH+, or release of detectable virus particles into the blood meals during feeding events. When the F1 generations of GpSGHV-challenged mothers were dissected within 24 h post-eclosion, SGH+ was observed to increase from 4.5% in the first larviposition cycle to >95% in the fourth cycle. Despite being sterile, these F1 SGH+ progeny mated readily. Removal of the tsetse symbiome, however, suppressed transgenerational transfer of the virus via milk secretions and blocked the ability of GpSGHV to infect salivary glands of the F1 progeny. Whereas GpSGHV infects and replicates in salivary glands of developing pupa, the virus is unable to induce SGH+ within fully differentiated adult salivary glands. The F1 SGH+ adults are responsible for the GpSGHV-induced colony collapse in tsetse factories. Our data suggest that GpSGHV has co-evolved with the tsetse symbiome and that the symbionts play key roles in the virus transmission from mother to progeny.
Genetic diversity of Hirsutella thompsonii isolates from Thailand based on AFLP analysis and partial beta-tubulin gene sequences
Tigano, Myrian S.;Adams, Byron;Maimala, Saowanit;Boucias, Drion;
Genetics and Molecular Biology , 2006, DOI: 10.1590/S1415-47572006000400022
Abstract: amplified fragment length polymorphism (aflp) was used to investigate polymorphism among 43 hirsutella thompsonii isolates (33 from thailand) obtained from various mite species. the outgroups were an unidentified hirsutella isolate along with hirsutella nodulosa and hirsutella kirchneri. phylogenetic analyses of the aflp data showed significant variation among isolates and the existence of three h. thompsonii clades. we also investigated the isolates using pcr with specific primers for the hirsutella exotoxin gene hirsutelin a (hta) and 18 of these isolates were used for sequencing of the partial b-tubulin gene. phylogenetic analyses of b-tubulin sequences showed two distinct h. thompsonii clades, one of which included aflp clades i and ii. for both markers grouping of the h. thompsonii isolates was not related to either host mite species or geographical origin, although for the hta gene one clade contained only isolates with no detectable hta band. these results confirm the high intraspecific polymorphism of h. thompsonii, and maximum likelihood analysis showed no monophyletic group within this species. to refine the taxonomy of this genus other studies should be undertaken using additional molecular markers and several other hirsutella isolates.
A Lack of Parasitic Reduction in the Obligate Parasitic Green Alga Helicosporidium
Jean-Fran?ois Pombert,Nicolas Achille Blouin,Chris Lane,Drion Boucias,Patrick J. Keeling
PLOS Genetics , 2014, DOI: doi/10.1371/journal.pgen.1004355
Abstract: The evolution of an obligate parasitic lifestyle is often associated with genomic reduction, in particular with the loss of functions associated with increasing host-dependence. This is evident in many parasites, but perhaps the most extreme transitions are from free-living autotrophic algae to obligate parasites. The best-known examples of this are the apicomplexans such as Plasmodium, which evolved from algae with red secondary plastids. However, an analogous transition also took place independently in the Helicosporidia, where an obligate parasite of animals with an intracellular infection mechanism evolved from algae with green primary plastids. We characterised the nuclear genome of Helicosporidium to compare its transition to parasitism with that of apicomplexans. The Helicosporidium genome is small and compact, even by comparison with the relatively small genomes of the closely related green algae Chlorella and Coccomyxa, but at the functional level we find almost no evidence for reduction. Nearly all ancestral metabolic functions are retained, with the single major exception of photosynthesis, and even here reduction is not complete. The great majority of genes for light-harvesting complexes, photosystems, and pigment biosynthesis have been lost, but those for other photosynthesis-related functions, such as Calvin cycle, are retained. Rather than loss of whole function categories, the predominant reductive force in the Helicosporidium genome is a contraction of gene family complexity, but even here most losses affect families associated with genome maintenance and expression, not functions associated with host-dependence. Other gene families appear to have expanded in response to parasitism, in particular chitinases, including those predicted to digest the chitinous barriers of the insect host or remodel the cell wall of Helicosporidium. Overall, the Helicosporidium genome presents a fascinating picture of the early stages of a transition from free-living autotroph to parasitic heterotroph where host-independence has been unexpectedly preserved.
Illumination of Murine Gammaherpesvirus-68 Cycle Reveals a Sexual Transmission Route from Females to Males in Laboratory Mice
Sylvie Fran?ois,Sarah Vidick,Micka?l Sarlet,Daniel Desmecht,Pierre Drion,Philip G. Stevenson,Alain Vanderplasschen,Laurent Gillet
PLOS Pathogens , 2013, DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1003292
Abstract: Transmission is a matter of life or death for pathogen lineages and can therefore be considered as the main motor of their evolution. Gammaherpesviruses are archetypal pathogenic persistent viruses which have evolved to be transmitted in presence of specific immune response. Identifying their mode of transmission and their mechanisms of immune evasion is therefore essential to develop prophylactic and therapeutic strategies against these infections. As the known human gammaherpesviruses, Epstein-Barr virus and Kaposi's Sarcoma-associated Herpesvirus are host-specific and lack a convenient in vivo infection model; related animal gammaherpesviruses, such as murine gammaherpesvirus-68 (MHV-68), are commonly used as general models of gammaherpesvirus infections in vivo. To date, it has however never been possible to monitor viral excretion or virus transmission of MHV-68 in laboratory mice population. In this study, we have used MHV-68 associated with global luciferase imaging to investigate potential excretion sites of this virus in laboratory mice. This allowed us to identify a genital excretion site of MHV-68 following intranasal infection and latency establishment in female mice. This excretion occurred at the external border of the vagina and was dependent on the presence of estrogens. However, MHV-68 vaginal excretion was not associated with vertical transmission to the litter or with horizontal transmission to female mice. In contrast, we observed efficient virus transmission to na?ve males after sexual contact. In vivo imaging allowed us to show that MHV-68 firstly replicated in penis epithelium and corpus cavernosum before spreading to draining lymph nodes and spleen. All together, those results revealed the first experimental transmission model for MHV-68 in laboratory mice. In the future, this model could help us to better understand the biology of gammaherpesviruses and could also allow the development of strategies that could prevent the spread of these viruses in natural populations.
Modeling the modulation of neuronal bursting: a singularity theory approach
Alessio Franci,Guillaume Drion,Rodolphe Sepulchre
Mathematics , 2013,
Abstract: Exploiting the specific structure of neuron conductance-based models, the paper investigates the mathematical modeling of neuronal bursting modulation. The proposed approach combines singularity theory and geometric singular perturbations to capture the geometry of multiple time-scales attractors in the neighborhood of high-codimension singularities. We detect a three-time scale bursting attractor in the universal unfolding of the winged cusp singularity and discuss the physiological relevance of the bifurcation and unfolding parameters in determining a physiological modulation of bursting. The results suggest generality and simplicity in the organizing role of the winged cusp singularity for the global dynamics of conductance based models.
An organizing center in a planar model of neuronal excitability
Alessio Franci,Guillaume Drion,Rodolphe Sepulchre
Quantitative Biology , 2012,
Abstract: The paper studies the excitability properties of a generalized FitzHugh-Nagumo model. The model differs from the purely competitive FitzHugh-Nagumo model in that it accounts for the effect of cooperative gating variables such as activation of calcium currents. Excitability is explored by unfolding a pitchfork bifurcation that is shown to organize five different types of excitability. In addition to the three classical types of neuronal excitability, two novel types are described and distinctly associated to the presence of cooperative variables.
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