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Title: A metagenomic assessment of the bacteria associated with Lucilia sericata and Lucilia cuprina (Diptera: Calliphoridae)

item SINGH, BANESHWAR - Virginia Commonwealth University
item Crippen, Tawni - Tc
item ZHENG, LONGYU - Huazhong Agricultural University
item FIELDS, ANDREW - Stoneybrook University
item ZINIU, YU - Huazhong Agricultural University
item LQUN, MA - Chinese Academy Of Sciences
item WOOD, THOMAS - Pennsylvania State University
item DOWD, SCOT - Molecular Research Lp (MR DNA)
item FLORES, MICAH - Walter Reed Army Institute
item TOMBERLIN, JEFFERY - Texas A&M University
item TARONE, AARON - Texas A&M University

Submitted to: Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/23/2014
Publication Date: 10/14/2014
Publication URL:
Citation: Singh, B., Crippen, T.L., Zheng, L., Fields, A.T., Ziniu, Y., Qun, M., Wood, T.K., Dowd, S.E., Flores, M., Tomberlin, J.K., Tarone, A.M. 2014. A metagenomic assessment of the bacteria associated with Lucilia sericata and Lucilia cuprina (Diptera: Calliphoridae). Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology. 99:869-883.

Interpretive Summary: Knowledge of the blowfly benefits basic veterinary, forensic, and agricultural endeavors. These species are colonizers of carrion and dispersers of pathogens; but they can also deposit their larvae into the body of a live mammal to grow inside the host while feeding on its tissue (myiasis). This results in more than 150 million dollars of annual economic loss to the wool industry in Australia alone. However, this behavior has beneficial uses as certain blow flies are used in maggot therapy, which employs the larvae to remove of dead or damaged tissue to improve wound healing. Additionally, some products produced by the larvae possess antimicrobial properties. It is thought that bacteria associated with these flies participate in both of these pathogenic and beneficial properties. Therefore, knowledge of the bacterial populations associated with these flies is important. This study determined the bacterial communities on different life stages of blow fly species using 16S rDNA 454-pyrosequencing. The work then compared how similar the communities were, what bacteria were exchanged with the surrounding environment, and what bacteria were likely to be retained through to the next generation. This information is vital in assessing bacterial dispersal and pathogen spread from carrion to flies to live animals.

Technical Abstract: Lucilia Robineau-Desvoidy (Diptera: Calliphoridae), is a blow fly genus of forensic, medical, veterinary, and agricultural importance. Both species of this genus causes myiasis and are vectors of disease causing bacteria. This genus is also famous because of its beneficial uses in maggot therapy. Although this genus is economically very important, our knowledge about bacteria associated with different life stages of these flies and how these bacteria are horizontally and vertically transmitted are not known. In this study, we characterized bacteria associated with different life stages of Lucilia cuprina and L. sericata and in salivary gland of L. sericata by using 16S rDNA 454-pyrosequencing. Bacteria associated with salivary gland of L. sericata were also characterized using light and transmission electron microscopy.