September 2012

Event Date: 
Wednesday, March 6, 2013 (All day) - Thursday, March 7, 2013 (All day)

The Molecular Microbiology Meeting for 2013 has been booked for March 6th and 7th at Waterview in Bicentenial Park, Sydney, NSW. Please put the date in your diaries.

Note that the venue has changed and we are planning a meeting over 2 days. For those travelling interstate there is accommodation nearby at the Novotel and Ibis Hotels. You can book accommodation on the registration page.

Holding the meeting over 2 days has allowed us to invite more speakers and make more space for oral presentations selected from abstracts so please plan your abstract and register for the meeting so that we can include you in the program. Closing date for oral presentations will be October 26th.

The program will include:
Professor David Livermore - Drug resistance (Keynote) University of East Anglia (UEA) and Health Protection Agency, London UK

A/Professor Leo Poon - Emerging viruses (Keynote) University of Hong Kong

Professor Tom Riley -    C.difficile (Keynote) University of Western Australia

Reference: JOB321
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Employer: Professor David Waite
Application deadline: CLOSED
Event Date: 
Wednesday, September 26, 2012 - 18:15
Institution: 
Macquarie University
Title: 

Defining the effluxome of Acinetobacter baumannii

Abstract: 

 
Acinetobacter baumannii is a Gram-negative opportunistic human pathogen known to cause a range of infections in hospitals. Despite their recent emergence, strains of A. baumannii, resistant to essentially all routinely used antibiotics, have been isolated from clinical settings. Bioinformatic analysis identified more than 50 transporter systems with a putative role in drug efflux in the genome of A. baumannii ATCC17978, representing ~2% of all its protein coding ORFs. Based on an assumption that drug transport is often associated with over-expression of a relevant efflux system in the presence of the substrate, high-throughput quantitative reverse-transcriptase PCR (qRT-PCR) has been performed after shock treatments with sub-inhibitory concentrations of antibiotics and differential expression of genes was assessed. This strategy has led to the discovery of novel drug efflux systems and defined physiological functions for previously characterised and novel pumps in drug resistance.
Efflux systems have evolved for millions of years before bacteria such as A. baumannii entered the hospital environment. Presumably, they have initially developed as mechanisms of resistance against naturally occurring substrates. To further characterize the role of efflux systems, cultures of A. baumannii were treated with bioactive natural compounds found in the environment, i.e. soil. These treatments resulted in significant changes in the transcription of efflux pumps indicating their possible role in the defence against compounds found in nature.
Increased expression of efflux systems was also observed when cells of A. baumannii were grown in biofilms compared to planktonic cultures which could suggest that efflux pumps may also play an important role in the functioning of these bacterial communities.

 

Event Date: 
Wednesday, September 26, 2012 - 18:00 - 18:15
Institution: 
Macquarie University
Title: 

Disruption of transporter genes in the enantio-pyochelin biosynthesis gene cluster of Pseudomonas protegens Pf-5 has pleitropic phenotypic effects

Abstract: 

 
Pseudomonas protegens Pf-5 is a biocontrol bacterium that produces the siderophore enantio-pyochelin under conditions of iron starvation which has the function of scavenging iron. In addition, biosynthetic intermediates of salicylic acid and dihydroaeruginoic acid are usually secreted as well. In this study, we tried to elucidate the roles of three putative transporters that are encoded by the genes PFL_3495, PFL_3503 and PFL_3504 via gene truncation experiments. Out of expectation, truncation of these genes resulted in increased secretion of these products in the culture supernatants. Transcriptional profiling revealed altered expression of the biosynthetic gene cluster by PFL_3504 mutant but not by the PFL_3495 and PFL_3503 mutants. Phenotype microarray revealed that these mutants have different stress and chemical resistance profile when compared to the wild-type. 

Event Date: 
Wednesday, September 26, 2012 - 19:00 - 20:00
Institution: 
University of New South Wales
Title: 

Microbial methane formation and oxidation in abandoned coal mines

Abstract: 

 
Worldwide, mine gas is being used increasingly for heat and power production. About 7% of the annual methane emissions originate from coal mining. In abandoned coal mines, stable carbon and hydrogen isotopic signatures of methane indicate a mixed thermogenic and biogenic origin. The thermogenic methane is a reminder of geological processes, but its biogenic formation is still going on. Besides hard coal, possible sources for methane are large amounts of mine timber left behind after the end of mining.
Methanogenic archaea are responsible for the production of substantial amounts of methane. Mine timber and hard coal showed an in situ production of methane with isotopic signatures similar to those of the methane in the mine atmosphere. Long-term incubations of coal and timber as sole carbon sources formed methane over a period of 9 months. We directly unraveled the active methanogens mediating the methane release as well as the active bacteria potentially involved in the trophic network. Furthermore, we proved the presence of an active methanotrophic community. Directed by the methane production and oxidation, respectively, samples for DNA stable-isotope probing (SIP) coupled to subsequent quantitative PCR and DGGE analyses were taken from long term incubations over 6 months. The stable-isotope-labeled precursors of methane, [13C]acetate and H2-13CO2, and 13CH4 were fed to liquid cultures from hard coal and mine timber. Predominantly acetoclastic methanogenesis was stimulated in enrichments containing acetate and H2+CO2. The H2+CO2 was mainly used by acetogens similar to Pelobacter acetylenicus and Clostridium species forming acetate as intermediate and providing it to the methanogens. Active methanogens, closely affiliated to Methanosarcina barkeri, utilized the readily available acetate rather than the thermodynamical more favourable hydrogen. Furthermore, the activity of a distinct methane-oxidizing community is predominated of a member belonging to the type I methanotrophs similar to Methylobacter marinus that assimilated 13CH4 nearly exclusively. Thus, active methanotrophic bacteria are associated with the methanogenic microbial community that is highly adapted to the low H2 conditions found in the coal mines with acetate as the main precursor of the biogenic methane.