Cyanolab publications in July 2016

In July 2016 four publications have appeared to which Cyanolab has contributed.

New regulatory RNA: In the publication de Porcellinis et al. (2016) we characterize PmgR1, a small RNA that is involved in the regulation of growth under photomixotrophic conditions and glycogen metabolism.

Mechanisms for self-destruction: In Kopfmann et al. (2016) we present an overview on the type II toxin-antitoxin systems in the cyanobacterial model Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803. This organism possesses with 69 type II toxin-antitoxin systems plus seven stand-alone components a startling number of such systems. These systems are dangerous biological entitities: Activation of the toxin may lead to the self-destruction of the cell. Indeed, some of these systems function in the post-segregational killing of cells that have lost the plasmid encoding it. However, for the vast majority of toxin-antitoxin systems the functions have remained unknown, especially when encoded in the chromosome. The comprehensive list of these systems will be helpful in their further functional analysis.

Metatranscriptomic analysis of the near-surface microbiome in the South-West Pacific: Two studies contribute to the deeper understanding of marine microbial communities. The work by Pfreundt et al. (2016a) presents the metatranscriptomic analysis of microbial activities within a large mesocosm and the surrounding lagoon waters in the South-West Pacific, 35 km off the coast near Noumea, New Caledonia, over a time of 23 days. In the study by Spungin et al. (2016), cells of the important nitrogen fixer Trichodesmium were collected and studied during the crash of a bloom-like population. Metatranscriptomic profiling showed the  upregulated expression of several putative metacaspase genes, suggesting their involvement in the termination of the dense agglomerations of Trichodesmium. These two papers result from our participation in the VAHINE project.