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J Bacteriol. 2008 Jan;190(2):625-35. Epub 2007 Nov 9.

Global genomic analysis of Pseudomonas savastanoi pv. savastanoi plasmids.

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Area de Genética, Universidad de Málaga, Facultad de Ciencias, Campus de Teatinos s/n, 29071 Málaga, Spain.


Pseudomonas savastanoi pv. savastanoi strains harbor native plasmids belonging to the pPT23A plasmid family (PFPs) which are detected in all pathovars of the related species Pseudomonas syringae examined and contribute to the ecological and pathogenic fitness of their host. However, there is a general lack of information about the gene content of P. savastanoi pv. savastanoi plasmids and their role in the interaction of this pathogen with olive plants. We designed a DNA macroarray containing 135 plasmid-borne P. syringae genes to conduct a global genetic analysis of 32 plasmids obtained from 10 P. savastanoi pv. savastanoi strains. Hybridization results revealed that the number of PFPs per strain varied from one to four. Additionally, most strains contained at least one plasmid (designated non-PFP) that did not hybridize to the repA gene of pPT23A. Only three PFPs contained genes involved in the biosynthesis of the virulence factor indole-3-acetic acid (iaaM, iaaH, and iaaL). In contrast, ptz, a gene involved in the biosynthesis of cytokinins, was found in five PFPs and one non-PFP. Genes encoding a type IV secretion system (T4SS), type IVA, were found in both PFPs and non-PFPs; however, type IVB genes were found only on PFPs. Nine plasmids encoded both T4SSs, whereas seven other plasmids carried none of these genes. Most PFPs and non-PFPs hybridized to at least one putative type III secretion system effector gene and to a variety of additional genes encoding known P. syringae virulence factors and one or more insertion sequence transposase genes. These results indicate that non-PFPs may contribute to the virulence and fitness of the P. savastanoi pv. savastanoi host. The overall gene content of P. savastanoi pv. savastanoi plasmids, with their repeated information, mosaic arrangement, and insertion sequences, suggests a possible role in adaptation to a changing environment.

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