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An occurrence survey was conducted on selected pathogens in source and treated drinking water collected from 25 drinking water treatment plants (DWTPs) in the United States. Water samples were analyzed for the protozoa Giardia and Cryptosporidium (EPA Method 1623); the fungi Aspergillus fumigatus, Aspergillus niger and Aspergillus terreus (quantitative PCR [qPCR]); and the bacteria Legionella pneumophila (qPCR), Mycobacterium avium, M. avium subspecies paratuberculosis, and Mycobacterium intracellulare (qPCR and culture). Cryptosporidium and Giardia were detected in 25% and in 46% of the source water samples, respectively (treated waters were not tested). Aspergillus fumigatus was the most commonly detected fungus in source waters (48%) but none of the three fungi were detected in treated water. Legionella pneumophila was detected in 25% of the source water samples but in only 4% of treated water samples. M. avium and M. intracellulare were both detected in 25% of source water, while all three mycobacteria were detected in 36% of treated water samples. Five species of mycobacteria, Mycobacterium mucogenicum, Mycobacterium phocaicum, Mycobacterium triplex, Mycobacterium fortuitum, and Mycobacterium lentiflavum were cultured from treated water samples. Although these DWTPs represent a fraction of those in the U.S., the results suggest that many of these pathogens are widespread in source waters but that treatment is generally effective in reducing them to below detection limits. The one exception is the mycobacteria, which were commonly detected in treated water, even when not detected in source waters.
Published by Elsevier B.V.
Identifying host cell metabolic phenotypes that promote high recombinant protein titer is a major goal of the biotech industry. (13)C metabolic flux analysis (MFA) provides a rigorous approach to quantify these metabolic phenotypes by applying isotope tracers to map the flow of carbon through intracellular metabolic pathways. Recent advances in tracer theory and measurements are enabling more information to be extracted from (13)C labeling experiments. Sustained development of publicly available software tools and standardization of experimental workflows is simultaneously encouraging increased adoption of (13)C MFA within the biotech research community. A number of recent (13)C MFA studies have identified increased citric acid cycle and pentose phosphate pathway fluxes as consistent markers of high recombinant protein expression, both in mammalian and microbial hosts. Further work is needed to determine whether redirecting flux into these pathways can effectively enhance protein titers while maintaining acceptable glycan profiles.
Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
The domestication of animals, plants, and microbes fundamentally transformed the lifestyle and demography of the human species . Although the genetic and functional underpinnings of animal and plant domestication are well understood, little is known about microbe domestication [2-6]. Here, we systematically examined genome-wide sequence and functional variation between the domesticated fungus Aspergillus oryzae, whose saccharification abilities humans have harnessed for thousands of years to produce sake, soy sauce, and miso from starch-rich grains, and its wild relative A. flavus, a potentially toxigenic plant and animal pathogen . We discovered dramatic changes in the sequence variation and abundance profiles of genes and wholesale primary and secondary metabolic pathways between domesticated and wild relative isolates during growth on rice. Our data suggest that, through selection by humans, an atoxigenic lineage of A. flavus gradually evolved into a "cell factory" for enzymes and metabolites involved in the saccharification process. These results suggest that whereas animal and plant domestication was largely driven by Neolithic "genetic tinkering" of developmental pathways, microbe domestication was driven by extensive remodeling of metabolism.
Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
The prevalence of diarrheagenic Escherichia coli in childhood diarrhea and the role of contaminated food products in disease transmission in Colombia are largely unknown. The aim of this study is to identify E. coli pathotypes, including E. coli O157:H7, from 108 stool samples from children with acute diarrhea, 38 meat samples and 38 vegetable samples. Multiplex PCR and Bax Dupont systems were used for E. coli pathotype detection. Eighteen (9.8%) E. coli diarrheagenic pathotypes were detected among all clinical and food product samples tested. Four different pathotypes were identified from clinical samples, including enteroaggregative E. coli, enterotoxigenic E. coli, shiga-toxin producing E. coli, and enteropathogenic E. coli. Food product samples were positive for enteroaggregative and shiga-toxin producing E. coli, suggesting that meat and vegetables may be involved in transmission of these E. coli pathotypes in the community. Most E. coli strains identified belong to the phylogenetic groups A and B1, known to be associated with intestinal rather than extraintestinal E. coli clones. Our data is the first molecular E. coli report that confirms the presence of E. coli pathotypes circulating in Colombia among children with diarrhea and food products for human consumption. Implementation of multiplex PCR technology in Latin America and other countries with limited resources may provide an important epidemiological tool for the surveillance of E. coli pathotypes from clinical isolates as well as from water and food product samples.
(c) 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Acute diarrheal disease is a leading cause of childhood morbidity and mortality in the developing world and Escherichia coli intestinal pathogens are important causative agents. Information on the epidemiology of E. coli intestinal pathogens and their association with diarrheal disease is limited because no diagnostic testing is available in countries with limited resources. To evaluate the prevalence of E. coli intestinal pathogens in a Caribbean-Colombian region, E. coli clinical isolates from children with diarrhea were analyzed by a recently reported two-reaction multiplex polymerase chain reaction (Gomez-Duarte et al., Diagn Microbiol Infect Dis 2009;63:1-9). The phylogenetic group from all E. coli isolates was also typed by a single-reaction multiplex polymerase chain reaction. We found that among 139 E. coli strains analyzed, 20 (14.4%) corresponded to E. coli diarrheagenic pathotypes. Enterotoxigenic, shiga-toxin-producing, enteroaggregative, diffuse adherent, and enteropathogenic E. coli pathotypes were detected, and most of them belonged to the phylogenetic groups A and B1, known to be associated with intestinal pathogens. This is the first report on the molecular characterization of E. coli diarrheogenic isolates in Colombia and the first report on the potential role of E. coli in childhood diarrhea in this geographic area.
Microbial mediated bioremediation has a great potential to effectively restore contaminated environment, but the lack of information about factors regulating the growth and metabolism of various microbial communities in polluted environment often limits its implementation. Newly seeded techniques such as transcriptomics, proteomics and interactomics offer remarkable promise as tools to address longstanding questions regarding the molecular mechanisms involved in the control of mineralization pathways. During mineralization, transcript structures and their expression have been studied using high-throughput transcriptomic techniques with microarrays. Generally however, transcripts have no ability to operate any physiological response; rather, they must be translated into proteins with significant functional impact. These proteins can be identified by proteomic techniques using powerful two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (2-DE). Towards the establishment of functional proteomics, the current advances in mass spectrometry (MS) and protein microarrays play a central role in the proteomics approach. Exploring the differential expression of a wide variety of proteins and screening of the entire genome for proteins that interact with particular mineralization regulatory factors would help us to gain insights into bioremediation.
PURPOSE OF REVIEW - A disturbance in microbial balance of the gastrointestinal tract is often associated with diarrhea. Therefore, probiotics, as beneficial microorganisms for host health, have attracted clinical attention for their potential therapeutic application in the treatment of diarrhea. This review focuses on new research findings relevant to the effects of probiotics on diarrhea prevention and treatment and potential mechanisms of action for this alternative therapy for diarrhea.
RECENT FINDINGS - Clinical trials suggest potential beneficial effects of probiotic therapy for preventing and treating antibiotic-associated diarrhea, acute diarrhea including rotavirus-induced diarrhea, traveler's diarrhea, and diarrhea-predominant irritable bowel syndrome. The most extensively studied probiotics for diarrhea are Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium and Saccharomyces, with potential mechanisms of therapeutic action based on the protection of intestinal epithelial cell and barrier function, prevention of enterotoxin binding to intestinal epithelial cells, and regulation of intestinal microbial environment.
SUMMARY - Growing evidence suggests that probiotics may serve as a functional food in the treatment of diarrhea. Remaining challenges include identifying mechanisms of action to provide the basis of more refined hypothesis-driven clinical trials. The correct combination and concentration of probiotics applied to the appropriate gastrointestinal disorders may improve the efficacy of this approach for diarrhea and other diseases.