Title Functional and Comparative Genomic Analysis of Integrated Prophage-Like Sequences in “Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus”
Publication Type Journal Article
Year of Publication 2019
Authors Dominguez-Mirazo M, Jin R, Weitz JS
Journal mSphere

Huanglongbing disease (HLB; yellow shoot disease) is a severe worldwide infectious disease for citrus family plants. The pathogen “Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus” is an alphaproteobacterium of the Rhizobiaceae family that has been identified as the causative agent of HLB. The virulence of “Ca. Liberibacter asiaticus” has been attributed, in part, to prophage-carried genes. Prophage and prophage-like elements have been identified in 12 of the 15 available “Ca. Liberibacter asiaticus” genomes and are classified into three prophage types. Here, we reexamined all 15 “Ca. Liberibacter asiaticus” genomes using a de novo prediction approach and expanded the number of prophage-like elements from 16 to 33. Further, we found that all of the “Ca. Liberibacter asiaticus” genomes contained at least one prophage-like sequence. Comparative analysis revealed a prevalent, albeit previously unknown, prophage-like sequence type that is a remnant of an integrated prophage. Notably, this remnant prophage is found in the Ishi-1 “Ca. Liberibacter asiaticus” strain that had previously been reported as lacking prophages. Our findings provide both a resource for data and new insights into the evolutionary relationship between phage and “Ca. Liberibacter asiaticus” pathogenicity.

URL https://msphere.asm.org/content/4/6/e00409-19.abstract
DOI 10.1128/mSphere.00409-19