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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Molecular Plant Pathology Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #320937

Title: Complete genome sequence of Spiroplasma turonicum, a parasite of horse fly, Haematopota sp. (Diptera: Tabanidae)

item Davis, Robert
item Shao, Jonathan
item Zhao, Yan
item GASPARICH, GAIL - Towson University
item Gaynor, Brady
item DONOFRIO, NICOLE - University Of Delaware

Submitted to: Genome Announcements
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/2/2015
Publication Date: 11/19/2015
Citation: Davis, R.E., Shao, J.Y., Zhao, Y., Gasparich, G., Gaynor, B., Donofrio, N. 2015. Complete genome sequence of Spiroplasma turonicum, a parasite of horse fly, Haematopota sp. (Diptera: Tabanidae). Genome Announcements. 3(6):e01367-15. doi:10.1128/genomeA.01367-15.

Interpretive Summary: Helically shaped, tiny bacteria called “spiroplasmas” were first discovered as a disease-causing component of the corn plant microbiome (phytobiome). Later, other spiroplasmas were found in other crops, and in insects, ticks, and crustaceans. Recently a spiroplasma (Spiroplasma turonicum), originally found in a horse fly, was isolated from a systemically infected human. Because horse fly was previously reported to feed on nectar, as well as blood, we predicted that S. turonicum may occur on flowers, or other plant surfaces, in the vicinity of nectaries. This raises the possibility that such a spiroplasma might be inadvertently detected in assays designed to detect plant pathogenic spiroplasmas and phytoplasmas in diseased or quarantined plants. To learn whether the horse fly spiroplasma contains any genes similar to genes in plant pathogenic spiroplasmas or phytoplasmas, we decoded (identified and interpreted) all the genes in S. turonicum, the first time that all the genes have been decoded in any spiroplasma species found to infect a human. The completed gene decoding will make possible comparative genomic evolutionary studies of this spiroplasma and the plant pathogens, and it will interest quarantine agencies, diagnostics companies, microbiologists, plant pathologists, entomologists, professors, and students, as well as people in the field of human medicine.

Technical Abstract: Spiroplasma turonicum was isolated from a Haematopota sp. fly in France. We report the nucleotide sequence of the circular chromosome of strain Tab4cT. The genome information will facilitate evolutionary studies of spiroplasmas, including symbionts of insects and ticks, and pathogens of plants, crustaceans, and humans.