Navigation Links
Microbes and their hosts -- exploring the complexity of symbiosis in DNA and cell biology

New Rochelle, NY, July 28, 2009The unique association between microorganisms and their hosts, whether insects, plants, or mammals, provides a fascinating view into how microbial symbionts adapt to changing biological environments. Insights into the diversity and complexity of symbiotic relationships are the focus of the current special issue of DNA and Cell Biology, a peer-reviewed journal published by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. The issue is available free online at

"Symbiosis is one of the most rapidly growing fields in biology.... After decades of focusing on bacteria in pure culture, it is evident that to manage them for our benefit, we need to understand bacteria in association with the complex biological environments with which they contend in the natural world," write Jo Handelsman, PhD, Editor-in-Chief of DNA and Cell Biology, Professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and President of the Rosalind Franklin Society, and Guest Editor Margaret J. McFall-Ngai, Professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, in their Editorial.

The issue contains articles representative of the broad range of scientific topics and disciplines related to microbial symbiosis. These include "The Oral Microbial Consortium's Interaction with the Periodontal Innate Defense System," which describes a process called "local chemokine paralysis," in which the membership and characteristics of the bacterial community that populates the gingival crevice in the human mouth affect the ability of the natural immune defenses in the mouth to detect the presence of harmful bacteria and orchestrate their destruction. Author Richard Darveau, PhD, from the University of Washington in Seattle, describes this phenomenon as "another mechanism by which the action of a single bacterial member of the oral consortium can affect the host responses to a wide variety of different bacteria."

The term "symbiont plasticity" describes the mechanisms by which symbiotic microbes adapt to changes in host development, immune responses, and the changing external environment. Jennifer Wernegreen, PhD, from the Marine Biological Laboratory at Woods Hole, MA, and Diana Wheeler, PhD, from the University of Arizona, in Tucson, use the example of mutualism between Blochmannia and their ant hosts to illustrate how the bacteria rely on genetic, ecological, and physiological means to maintain the functional flexibility that allows them to meet the needs of an ant colony rather than the individual ants that make up the colony. Their thought-provoking review of the impact of symbiotic lifestyle on genetic variation and microbial adaptation is entitled, "Remaining Flexible in Old Alliances: Functional Plasticity in Constrained Mutualisms."

Adam Silver and Joerg Graf from the University of Connecticut, in Storrs, explore the role of virulence factors and specific toxins produced by members of the Aeromonas veronii bacterial group in the article "Prevalence of Genes Encoding the Type Three Secretion System and the Effectors AexT and AexU in the Aeromonas veronii Group." These bacteria can cause a range of infections, from diarrhea and wound infections to life-threatening septicemia and meningitis. The authors demonstrate the presence of the type-3 secretion factors AexT and AexU in a variety of Aeromonas veronii strains and propose different functions for these two toxins.


Contact: Vicki Cohn
Mary Ann Liebert, Inc./Genetic Engineering News

Related biology news :

1. Hungry microbes share out the carbon in the roots of plants
2. Microbes churn out hydrogen at record rate
3. Cosmopolitan microbes -- hitchhikers on Darwins dust
4. Scientists melt million-year-old ice in search of ancient microbes
5. Methane from microbes: a fuel for the future
6. Nitrous oxide from ocean microbes
7. Paired microbes eliminate methane using sulfur pathway
8. Hot springs microbes hold key to dating sedimentary rocks, researchers say
9. Unexplored microbes hold incredible potential for science and industry
10. New window opens on the secret life of microbes
11. Coral reefs and climate change: Microbes could be the key to coral death
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/20/2015)... 2015 NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" or ... growing mobile commerce market and creator of the Wocket® ... was recently interviewed on The RedChip Money Report ... weekend on Bloomberg Europe , Bloomberg Asia, Bloomberg ... NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" or the "Company"), a biometric ...
(Date:11/19/2015)... YORK , Nov. 19, 2015  Although some ... market is dominated by a few companies, according to ... companies own 51% of the market share of the ... The World Market for Molecular Diagnostic s ... "The market is still controlled by one company ...
(Date:11/18/2015)... New York , November 18, 2015 ... Market Research has published a new market report titled ... Growth, Trends, and Forecast, 2015 - 2021. According to the ... in 2014 and is anticipated to reach US$29.1 bn ... to 2021. North America ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2015)... , Dec. 1, 2015 /PRNewswire/ - BioAmber Inc. (NYSE: BIOA ... has joined the American Business Act on Climate Pledge, alongside ... are standing with the Obama Administration to demonstrate an ongoing ... strong outcome to the COP21 Paris ... --> Sarnia, Canada . --> ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... , Nov. 30, 2015  Culprits beware, ... assistant chemistry professor Jan Halámek, is taking crime ...   --> ...   --> --> ... UAlbany have discovered a straightforward concept for identifying ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... Nov. 30, 2015 /PRNewswire/ - Zenith Epigenetics Corp. ("Zenith" or ... Norman C.W. Wong to its Board of Directors to ... Zenith with a wealth of experience as co-founder of Resverlogix, ... --> --> Dr. Wong ... board of directors. Zenith,s long standing expertise in epigenetics and ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... Atlanta, GA (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2015 ... ... announced a new globally touring exhibition Jurassic World: The Exhibition, opening in March ... Exhibition will embark on a worldwide tour including several North American tour dates. ...
Breaking Biology Technology: