Review that might be of interest to some:
The majority of clinically applied antimicrobial agents are derived from natural products generated by soil microorganisms and therefore resistance is likely to be ubiquitous in such environments. This is supported by the fact that numerous clinically important resistance mechanisms are encoded within the genomes of such bacteria. Advances in genomic sequencing have enabled the in silico identification of putative resistance genes present in these microorganisms. However, it is not sufficient to rely on the identification of putative resistance genes, we must also determine if the resultant proteins confer a resistant phenotype. This will require an analysis pipeline that extends from the extraction of environmental DNA, to the identification and analysis of potential resistance genes and their resultant proteins and phenotypes. This review focuses on the application of functional metagenomics and proteomics to study antimicrobial resistance in diverse environments.
New eLife paper from the Mougous lab with Brook Peterson as a middle author, on how Pseudomonas cells can sense death of their neighbors and changes their fitness in co-culture.
We’ll be going over the following paper in journal club this week with a discussion led by Megan:
A new paper in Cell explores the microbiome (and human metagenomes, if that’s the appropriate term) of NYC’s subways:
Also, the NY Times coverage of this article is trending on facebook! Everybody <3s microbes!
New article from Sansonetti’s group; they’ve found a way to culture SFBs in vitro in coculture with mouse cells and can now further study how SFBs influence the host immune system.
Jessica brought this paper to my attention; a group at UCSD found that fat cells in the skin protect against Staph aureus infection by producing an antimicrobial peptide. Nice story, and there’s an accompanying commentary article that is also a good read. They suggest that while it isn’t known how the adipocytes recognize Staph or other bacteria and know to produce the AMP, it could be happening through toll-like receptor signaling, since fat cells have TLRs. Didn’t know that! Cool stuff.
Primary article: http://stke.sciencemag.org/content/vj/sci/347/6217/67.abstract
Commentary article, “Killer Fat”: http://stke.sciencemag.org/content/vj/sci/347/6217/26.full