Query: NC_010723:3530000 Clostridium botulinum E3 str. Alaska E43, complete genome Lineage: Clostridium botulinum; Clostridium; Clostridiaceae; Clostridiales; Firmicutes; Bacteria General Information: This strain was probably isolated from salmon eggs associated with a foodborne case of botulism in Alaska, however the exact details are not available. This genus comprises about 150 metabolically diverse species of anaerobes that are ubiquitous in virtually all anoxic habitats where organic compounds are present, including soils, aquatic sediments and the intestinal tracts of animals and humans. This shape is attributed to the presence of endospores that develop under conditions unfavorable for vegetative growth and distend single cells terminally or sub-terminally. Spores germinate under conditions favorable for vegetative growth, such as anaerobiosis and presence of organic substrates. It is believed that present day Mollicutes (Eubacteria) have evolved regressively (i.e., by genome reduction) from gram-positive clostridia-like ancestors with a low GC content in DNA. This organism produces one of the most potent and deadly neurotoxins known, a botulinum toxin that prevents the release of acetylcholine at the neuromuscular junction, thereby inhibiting muscle contraction and causing paralysis. In most cases the diseased person dies of asphyxiation as a result of paralysis of chest muscles involved in breathing. The spores are heat-resistant and can survive in inadequately heated, prepared, or processed foods. Spores germinate under favorable conditions (anaerobiosis and substrate-rich environment) and bacteria start propagating very rapidly, producing the toxin.Botulinum toxin, and C. botulinum cells, has been found in a wide variety of foods, including canned ones. Almost any food that has a high pH (above 4.6) can support growth of the bacterium. Honey is the most common vehicle for infection in infants. Food poisoning through C. botulinum is the most frequent type of infection caused by this bacterium. The wound botulism that occurs when C. botulinum infects an individual via an open wound is much rarer and is very similar to tetanus disease. There are several types of botulinum toxin known (type A through type F), all of them being neurotoxic polypeptides. The most common and widely distributed are strains and serovars of C. botulinum that produce type A toxin.
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General Information: This strain has been isolated from the tracheal aspirate of a previously healthy HIV-negative patient with severe respiratory symptoms caused by this infection. Causes urogenital and respiratory disease. This genus currently comprises more than 120 obligate parasitic species found in a wide spectrum of hosts, including humans, animals, insects and plants. The primary habitats of human and animal mycoplasmas are mucous membranes of the respiratory and urogenital tracts, eyes, mammary glands and the joints. Infection that proceeds through attachment of the bacteria to the host cell via specialized surface proteins, adhesins, and subsequent invasion, results in prolonged intracellular persistence that may cause lethality. Once detected in association with their eukaryotic host tissue, most mycoplasmas can be cultivated in the absence of a host if their extremely fastidious growth requirements are met. The latter is one of the major traits that puts them in the separate taxonomic group of microorganisms, class Mollicutes. The cell membrane is rich in protein components (up to two thirds of the membrane mass) that largely consists of highly structurally adaptive lipoproteins employed in invading the host immune system, attachment to the host cells, and pathogenic invasion. Cell division proceeds via normal binary fission or via elongation of a parental cell to form multinucleated filaments and the subsequent breakup to form coccoid bodies.Mycoplasmas carry the smallest genomes of self-replicating cells (less than 500 recognizable coding regions), which is one of the reasons they were among the first microorganisms selected for the genome-sequencing projects. During their evolution, mycoplasmas appear to have lost all of the genes involved in amino acid and cofactor biosynthesis, synthesis of the cell wall and lipid metabolism, resulting in a requirement for the full spectrum of substrates and cofactors taken up from the host or from the complex artificial culture medium. They have lost a number of genes involved in cellular processes, such as cell division, heat shock response, regulatory genes, the two-component signal transduction systems, histidine protein kinases or their target response regulators, and most transcription factors. The majority of mycoplasmas are deficient in genes coding for components of intermediary and energy metabolism and thus are dependent mostly on glycolysis as an ATP-generating pathway. This organism infects humans in the urogenital and respiratory tracts though invasion of tissues. The disease is mainly associated with HIV-1 infection, particularly in the homosexual population, and is very persistent and believed to contribute to the deterioration of the immune system during HIV. Mycoplasma penetrans infection has also been suggested to be a primary cause of some forms of human urethritis and respiratory disease in non-HIV individuals.