Akiyoshi Donna E.

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Donna E.

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  • Article
    The reduced genome of the parasitic microsporidian Enterocytozoon bieneusi lacks genes for core carbon metabolism
    (Oxford University Press, 2010-05-13) Keeling, Patrick J. ; Corradi, Nicolas ; Morrison, Hilary G. ; Haag, Karen L. ; Ebert, Dieter ; Weiss, Louis M. ; Akiyoshi, Donna E. ; Tzipori, Saul
    Reduction of various biological processes is a hallmark of the parasitic lifestyle. Generally, the more intimate the association between parasites and hosts the stronger the parasite relies on its host's physiology for survival and reproduction. However, some systems have been held to be indispensable, for example, the core pathways of carbon metabolism that produce energy from sugars. Even the most hardened anaerobes that lack oxidative phosphorylation and the tricarboxylic acid cycle have retained glycolysis and some downstream means to generate ATP. Here we describe the deep-coverage genome resequencing of the pathogenic microsporidiian, Enterocytozoon bieneusi, which shows that this parasite has crossed this line and abandoned complete pathways for the most basic carbon metabolism. Comparing two genome sequence surveys of E. bieneusi to genomic data from four other microsporidia reveals a normal complement of 353 genes representing 30 functional pathways in E. bieneusi, except that only 2 out of 21 genes collectively involved in glycolysis, pentose phosphate, and trehalose metabolism are present. Similarly, no genes encoding proteins involved in the processing of spliceosomal introns were found. Altogether, E. bieneusi appears to have no fully functional pathway to generate ATP from glucose. Therefore, this intracellular parasite relies on transporters to import ATP from its host.
  • Article
    Genomic survey of the non-cultivatable opportunistic human pathogen, Enterocytozoon bieneusi
    (Public Library of Science, 2009-01-09) Akiyoshi, Donna E. ; Morrison, Hilary G. ; Lei, Shi ; Feng, Xiaochuan ; Zhang, Quanshun ; Corradi, Nicolas ; Mayanja, Harriet ; Tumwine, James K. ; Keeling, Patrick J. ; Weiss, Louis M. ; Tzipori, Saul
    Enterocytozoon bieneusi is the most common microsporidian associated with human disease, particularly in the immunocompromised population. In the setting of HIV infection, it is associated with diarrhea and wasting syndrome. Like all microsporidia, E. bieneusi is an obligate, intracellular parasite, but unlike others, it is in direct contact with the host cell cytoplasm. Studies of E. bieneusi have been greatly limited due to the absence of genomic data and lack of a robust cultivation system. Here, we present the first large-scale genomic dataset for E. bieneusi. Approximately 3.86 Mb of unique sequence was generated by paired end Sanger sequencing, representing about 64% of the estimated 6 Mb genome. A total of 3,804 genes were identified in E. bieneusi, of which 1,702 encode proteins with assigned functions. Of these, 653 are homologs of Encephalitozoon cuniculi proteins. Only one E. bieneusi protein with assigned function had no E. cuniculi homolog. The shared proteins were, in general, evenly distributed among the functional categories, with the exception of a dearth of genes encoding proteins associated with pathways for fatty acid and core carbon metabolism. Short intergenic regions, high gene density, and shortened protein-coding sequences were observed in the E. bieneusi genome, all traits consistent with genomic compaction. Our findings suggest that E. bieneusi is a likely model for extreme genome reduction and host dependence.