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Bioinform Biol Insights. 2013 Feb 24;7:55-72. doi: 10.4137/BBI.S11064. Print 2013.

A Microbial Metagenome (Leucobacter sp.) in Caenorhabditis Whole Genome Sequences.

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  • 1Department of Biosciences, Laboratory of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Parma, Parma, Italy.


DNA of apparently recent bacterial origin is found in the genomic sequences of Caenorhabditis angaria and Caenorhabditis remanei. Here we present evidence that the DNA belongs to a single species of the genus Leucobacter (high-GC Gram+ Actinobacteria). Metagenomic tools enabled the assembly of the contaminating sequences in a draft genome of 3.2 Mb harboring 2,826 genes. This information provides insight into a microbial organism intimately associated with Caenorhabditis as well as a solid basis for the reassignment of 3,373 metazoan entries of the public database to a novel bacterial species (Leucobacter sp. AEAR). The application of metagenomic techniques can thus prevent annotation errors and reveal unexpected genetic information in data obtained by conventional genomics.


contamination in sequence database; host-microbe interactions; next-generation sequencing; organism identification in DNA sequences; purine degradation

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