Query: NC_014029:331919 Yersinia pestis Z176003 chromosome, complete genome Lineage: Yersinia pestis; Yersinia; Enterobacteriaceae; Enterobacteriales; Proteobacteria; Bacteria General Information: It was isolated from a dead marmot in Tibet Autonomous Region, China. Gram-negative straight rods, sometimes approaching a spherical shape. Y.pestis is always nonmotile. It is the causative agent of plague which is primarily a disease of wild rodents. Y.pestis is transmitted among wild rodents by fleas, in which the bacteria multiply and block the esophagus and the pharynx. The fleas regurgitate the bacteria when they take their next blood meal. Bacteria are transmitted subcutaneously to humans by the bite of infected fleas, but also by air, especially during pandemics of disease. Infective flea bites produce the typical bubonic form of plague in humans.
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General Information: This organism was first isolated from the soil in Vineland, New Jersey, although it is found worldwide. It is a large obligate aerobe that has one of the highest respiratory rates of any organism. Azotobacter vinelandii also produces a number of unusual nitrogenases which allow it to fix atmospheric nitrogen to ammonia, a compound it can then use as a nitrogen source. It protects the oxygen-sensitive nitrogenase enzymes through its high respiratory rate, which sequesters the nitrogenase complexes in an anoxic environment. This organism has a number of unusual characteristics. Under extreme environmental conditions, the cell will produce a cyst that is resistant to dessication and is surrounded by two capsular polysaccharide layers. This organism produces two industrially important polysaccharides, poly-beta-hydroxybutyrate (PHB) and alginate. PHB is a thermoplastic biopolymer, and alginate is used in the food industry. Alginate is also used by the pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa to infect the lungs of cystic fibrosis patients.