Query: NC_008369:1702885 Francisella tularensis subsp. holarctica OSU18, complete genome Lineage: Francisella tularensis; Francisella; Francisellaceae; Thiotrichales; Proteobacteria; Bacteria General Information: Isolated from a beaver that died of tularemia in Oklahoma in 1978. Causative agent of tularemia. This organism was first identified by Edward Francis as the causative agent of a plague-like illness that affected squirrels in Tulare county in California in the early part of the 20th century. The organism now bears his name. The disease, which has been noted throughout recorded history, can be transmitted to humans by infected ticks or deerflies, infected meat, or by aerosol, and thus is a potential bioterrorism agent. This organism has a high infectivity rate, and can invade phagocytic and nonphagocytic cells, multiplying rapidly. Once within a macrophage, the organism can escape the phagosome and live in the cytosol. It is an aquatic organism, and can be found living inside protozoans, similar to what is observed with Legionella.
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General Information: This biovar nodulates legumes in the Tribe Viciae (Vicia, Pisum, Lathyrus, Lens). This strain is a spontaneous streptomycin-resistant mutant of strain 300. Nitrogen-fixing plant symbiont. This organism, like other Rhizobia, establishes a symbiotic relationship with a legume plant, providing nitrogen in exchange for a protected environment. The legume roots secrete flavonoids and isoflavonoids which the bacteria recognize and use to turn on genes involved in root nodulation. Many of the root nodulation genes are involved in synthesis and secretion of a nodule inducing signal, a lipochito-oligosaccharide molecule, which the plant recognizes, triggering nodule formation. The bacterium is endocytosed and exists inside a membrane bound organelle, the symbiosome, and fixes nitrogen for the plant cell while the host cell provides carbon compounds for the bacterium to grow on. The nitrogen fixation is important as it obviates the need for expensive and environmentally damaging fertilizer use.