Local Mobile Gene Pools Rapidly Cross Species Boundaries To Create within Global Vibrio cholerae Populations
Author(s)Boucher, Yan; Cordero Sanchez, Otto Xavier; Takemura, Alison Francesca; Hunt, Dana E.; Schliep, Klaus; Bapteste, Eric; Lopez, Philippe; Tarr, Cheryl L.; Polz, Martin F.; ... Show more Show less
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Vibrio cholerae represents both an environmental pathogen and a widely distributed microbial species comprised of closely related strains occurring in the tropical to temperate coastal ocean across the globe (Colwell RR, Science 274:2025–2031, 1996; Griffith DC, Kelly-Hope LA, Miller MA, Am. J. Trop. Med. Hyg. 75:973–977, 2006; Reidl J, Klose KE, FEMS Microbiol. Rev. 26:125–139, 2002). However, although this implies dispersal and growth across diverse environmental conditions, how locally successful populations assemble from a possibly global gene pool, relatively unhindered by geographic boundaries, remains poorly understood. Here, we show that environmental Vibrio cholerae possesses two, largely distinct gene pools: one is vertically inherited and globally well mixed, and the other is local and rapidly transferred across species boundaries to generate an endemic population structure. While phylogeographic analysis of isolates collected from Bangladesh and the U.S. east coast suggested strong panmixis for protein-coding genes, there was geographic structure in integrons, which are the only genomic islands present in all strains of V. cholerae (Chun J, et al., Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 106:15442–15447, 2009) and are capable of acquiring and expressing mobile gene cassettes. Geographic differentiation in integrons arises from high gene turnover, with acquisition from a locally cooccurring sister species being up to twice as likely as exchange with conspecific but geographically distant V. cholerae populations.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Biology; Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
American Society for Microbiology
Boucher, Y. et al. “Local Mobile Gene Pools Rapidly Cross Species Boundaries To Create Endemicity within Global Vibrio cholerae Populations.” mBio 2 (2011): e00335-10-e00335-10.
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