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Front. Microbiol. | doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2018.00877

Genome-wide comparative functional analyses reveal adaptations of Salmonella sv. Newport to a plant colonization lifestyle

 Marcos H. De Moraes1*, Emanuel Becerra-Soto2, Isai Salas Gonzáles3, 4,  Prerak Desai5, Weiping Chu5,  Steffen Porwollik5, Michael McClelland5 and  Max Teplitski1
  • 1Department of Soil and Water Sciences, University of Florida, United States
  • 2National Autonomous University of Mexico (Morelos), Mexico
  • 3Department of Biology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, United States
  • 4University of North Carolina, Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI), United States
  • 5Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, University of California, Irvine, United States

Outbreaks of salmonellosis linked to the consumption of produce have been disproportionately associated with the strains of serovar Newport. A hypothesis that strains of sv. Newport have evolved unique adaptations to persistence in plants that are not shared by other serovars was tested. We used a genome-wide mutant screen to compare growth in tomato fruit of a sv. Newport strain from an outbreak traced to tomatoes, and a sv. Typhimurium strain from animals. Most genes in Salmonella sv. Newport that were selected during persistence in tomatoes were shared with, and similarly selected in S. Typhimurium. Many of these functions are involved in basal metabolism, including amino acid biosynthetic pathways, iron acquisition, and maintenance of cell structure. One exception was a greater need for the core genes involved in purine metabolism in sv. Typhimurium than in sv. Newport. A gene, papA, that was unique to sv. Newport, contributed to the fitness in tomatoes. The papA gene was present in the sv. Newport Group III genomes, was generally absent from other Salmonella genomes, but its homolog was detected in Pantoea, Dickeya and Pectobacterium, members of the Enterobacteriacea family that can colonize both plants and animals.

Keywords: Salmonella newport, Tomato, Plant-Microbe Interactions, Comparative genomics, pan-genome, Vegetable safety

Received: 23 Dec 2017; Accepted: 16 Apr 2018.

Edited by:

Adam Schikora, Julius Kühn-Institut, Germany

Reviewed by:

Yufeng Yao, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China
Young Min Kwon, University of Arkansas, United States  

Copyright: © 2018 De Moraes, Becerra-Soto, Salas Gonzáles, Desai, Chu, Porwollik, McClelland and Teplitski. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Marcos H. De Moraes, University of Florida, Department of Soil and Water Sciences, Gainesville, United States, mhdmoraes@gmail.com