Uruma, Japan
Uruma, Japan

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PubMed | Saga University, National Institute of Genetics, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Tohoku University and 12 more.
Type: Journal Article | Journal: DNA research : an international journal for rapid publication of reports on genes and genomes | Year: 2016

Awamori is a traditional distilled beverage made from steamed Thai-Indica rice in Okinawa, Japan. For brewing the liquor, two microbes, local kuro (black) koji mold Aspergillus luchuensis and awamori yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae are involved. In contrast, that yeasts are used for ethanol fermentation throughout the world, a characteristic of Japanese fermentation industries is the use of Aspergillus molds as a source of enzymes for the maceration and saccharification of raw materials. Here we report the draft genome of a kuro (black) koji mold, A. luchuensis NBRC 4314 (RIB 2604). The total length of nonredundant sequences was nearly 34.7 Mb, comprising approximately 2,300 contigs with 16 telomere-like sequences. In total, 11,691 genes were predicted to encode proteins. Most of the housekeeping genes, such as transcription factors and N-and O-glycosylation system, were conserved with respect to Aspergillus niger and Aspergillus oryzae An alternative oxidase and acid-stable -amylase regarding citric acid production and fermentation at a low pH as well as a unique glutamic peptidase were also found in the genome. Furthermore, key biosynthetic gene clusters of ochratoxin A and fumonisin B were absent when compared with A. niger genome, showing the safety of A. luchuensis for food and beverage production. This genome information will facilitate not only comparative genomics with industrial kuro-koji molds, but also molecular breeding of the molds in improvements of awamori fermentation.


Wongwarangkana C.,University of Tokyo | Fujimori K.E.,Japan National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology | Akiba M.,University of Tokyo | Kinoshita S.,University of Tokyo | And 8 more authors.
BMC Genomics | Year: 2015

Background: microRNAs (miRNAs) in fish have not been as extensively studied as those in mammals. The fish species Takifugu rubripes is an intensively studied model organism whose genome has been sequenced. The T. rubripes genome is approximately eight times smaller than the human genome, but has a similar repertoire of protein-coding genes. Therefore, it is useful for identifying non-coding genes, including miRNA genes. To identify miRNA expression patterns in different organs of T. rubripes and give fundamental information to aid understanding of miRNA populations in this species, we extracted small RNAs from tissues and performed deep sequencing analysis to profile T. rubripes miRNAs. These data will be of assistance in functional studies of miRNAs in T. rubripes. Results: After analyzing a total of 139 million reads, we found miRNA species in nine tissues (fast and slow muscles, heart, eye, brain, intestine, liver, ovaries, and testes). We identified 1420 known miRNAs, many of which were strongly expressed in certain tissues with expression patterns similar to those described for other animals in previous reports. Most miRNAs were expressed in tissues other than the ovaries or testes. However, some miRNA families were highly abundant in the gonads, but expressed only at low levels in somatic tissue, suggesting specific function in germ cells. The most abundant isomiRs (miRNA variants) of many miRNAs had identical sequences in the 5' region. However, isomiRs of some miRNAs, including fru-miR-462-5p, varied in the 5' region in some tissues, suggesting that they may target different mRNA transcripts. Longer small RNAs (26-31 nt), which were abundant in the gonads, may be putative piRNAs because of their length and their origin from repetitive elements. Additionally, our data include possible novel classes of small RNAs. Conclusions: We elucidated miRNA expression patterns in various organs of T. rubripes. Most miRNA sequences are conserved in vertebrates, indicating that the basic functions of vertebrate miRNAs share a common evolution. Some miRNA species exhibit different distributions of isomiRs between tissues, suggesting that they have a broad range of functions. © 2015 Wongwarangkana et al.


Takagi H.,Nara Institute of Science and Technology | Hashida K.,Nara Institute of Science and Technology | Watanabe D.,Nara Institute of Science and Technology | Nasuno R.,Nara Institute of Science and Technology | And 4 more authors.
Journal of Bioscience and Bioengineering | Year: 2015

Awamori shochu is a traditional distilled alcoholic beverage made from steamed rice in Okinawa, Japan. Although it has a unique aroma that is distinguishable from that of other types of shochu, no studies have been reported on the breeding of awamori yeasts. In yeast, isoamyl alcohol (i-AmOH), known as the key flavor of bread, is mainly produced from α-ketoisocaproate in the pathway of l-leucine biosynthesis, which is regulated by end-product inhibition of α-isopropylmalate synthase (IPMS). Here, we isolated mutants resistant to the l-leucine analog 5,5,5-trifluoro-dl-leucine (TFL) derived from diploid awamori yeast of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Some of the mutants accumulated a greater amount of intracellular l-leucine, and among them, one mutant overproduced i-AmOH in awamori brewing. This mutant carried an allele of the LEU4 gene encoding the Ser542Phe/Ala551Val variant IPMS, which is less sensitive to feedback inhibition by l-leucine. Interestingly, we found that either of the constituent mutations (LEU4S542F and LEU4A551V) resulted in the TFL tolerance of yeast cells and desensitization to l-leucine feedback inhibition of IPMS, leading to intracellular l-leucine accumulation. Homology modeling also suggested that l-leucine binding was drastically inhibited in the Ser542Phe, Ala551Val, and Ser542Phe/Ala551Val variants due to steric hindrance in the cavity of IPMS. As we expected, awamori yeast cells expressing LEU4S542F, LEU4A551V, and LEU4S542F/A551V showed a prominent increase in extracellular i-AmOH production, compared with that of cells carrying the vector only. The approach described here could be a practical method for the breeding of novel awamori yeasts to expand the diversity of awamori taste and flavor. © 2014 The Society for Biotechnology, Japan.


PubMed | Kyoto Prefectural University, Kyushu University and BioJet Co.
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Genome announcements | Year: 2015

Here, we report the draft genome sequence of Lactobacillus gorillae strain KZ01(T) isolated from a western lowland gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla). This genome sequence will be helpful for the comparative genomics between human and nonhuman primate-associated Lactobacillus.

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