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Nucleic Acids Res. 2009 Sep;37(17):5768-83. doi: 10.1093/nar/gkp612. Epub 2009 Jul 28.

Whole-genome analyses reveal genetic instability of Acetobacter pasteurianus.

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Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Yamaguchi University School of Medicine, 1-1-1 Minami-Kogushi, Ube, Yamaguchi 755-8505, Japan.


Acetobacter species have been used for brewing traditional vinegar and are known to have genetic instability. To clarify the mutability, Acetobacter pasteurianus NBRC 3283, which forms a multi-phenotype cell complex, was subjected to genome DNA sequencing. The genome analysis revealed that there are more than 280 transposons and five genes with hyper-mutable tandem repeats as common features in the genome consisting of a 2.9-Mb chromosome and six plasmids. There were three single nucleotide mutations and five transposon insertions in 32 isolates from the cell complex. The A. pasteurianus hyper-mutability was applied for breeding a temperature-resistant strain grown at an unviable high-temperature (42 degrees C). The genomic DNA sequence of a heritable mutant showing temperature resistance was analyzed by mutation mapping, illustrating that a 92-kb deletion and three single nucleotide mutations occurred in the genome during the adaptation. Alpha-proteobacteria including A. pasteurianus consists of many intracellular symbionts and parasites, and their genomes show increased evolution rates and intensive genome reduction. However, A. pasteurianus is assumed to be a free-living bacterium, it may have the potentiality to evolve to fit in natural niches of seasonal fruits and flowers with other organisms, such as yeasts and lactic acid bacteria.

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