NC_013418:459650 Blattabacterium sp. (Periplaneta americana) str. BPLAN, complete
Host Lineage: Blattabacterium; Blattabacterium; Blattabacteriaceae; Flavobacteriales; Bacteroidetes; Bacteria
General Information: This organism is the endosymbiont of the American cockroach, Periplaneta americana. It is a Gram-negative maternally inherited bacteria which lives in specialized cells in the host's abdominal fat body. Phylogenetic analyses for the Blattabacterium-cockroach symbiosis supports the hypothesis of co-evolution between symbionts and hosts dating back to more than 140 million years ago. Cockroaches are omnivorous insects, often subsisting on a nitrogen-poor diet, and Blattabacterium have been hypothesized to participate in uric acid degradation, nitrogen assimilation, and nutrient provisioning. Genome sequencing and metabolic reconstruction shows that Blattabacterium can recycle nitrogen from urea and ammonia, which are uric acid degradation products, into glutamate, using urease and glutamate dehydrogenase, and thus would be able to provide its host with some essential amino acids, vitamins and cofactors. The bacterium relies on asparagine and glutamine supplied by the host; it may be able to make proline from arginine via the urea cycle.