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Kaltenpoth M.,Max Planck Institute For Chemische Okologie
BioSpektrum | Year: 2014

Microbial symbionts play an essential role for the ecology and evolution of most multicellular organisms. Firebugs (Hemiptera, Pyrrhocoridae) are associated with actinobacterial symbionts in the mid-gut that supplement limiting B-vitamins and are tightly integrated into the host's metabolism. The symbiosis is widespread among firebugs and enables them to subsist on Malvales seeds as the sole nutritional resource. © 2014 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

Fneich S.,University of Perpignan | Fneich S.,CNRS Host-Pathogen-Environment Interactions Laboratory | Dheilly N.,University of Perpignan | Dheilly N.,CNRS Host-Pathogen-Environment Interactions Laboratory | And 9 more authors.
Parasites and Vectors | Year: 2013

Background: Biomphalaria glabrata is the mollusc intermediate host for Schistosoma mansoni, a digenean flatworm parasite that causes human intestinal schistosomiasis. An estimated 200 million people in 74 countries suffer from schistosomiasis, in terms of morbidity this is the most severe tropical disease after malaria. Epigenetic information informs on the status of gene activity that is heritable, for which changes are reversible and that is not based on the DNA sequence. Epigenetic mechanisms generate variability that provides a source for potentially heritable phenotypic variation and therefore could be involved in the adaptation to environmental constraint. Phenotypic variations are particularly important in host-parasite interactions in which both selective pressure and rate of evolution are high. In this context, epigenetic changes are expected to be major drivers of phenotypic plasticity and co-adaptation between host and parasite. Consequently, with characterization of the genomes of invertebrates that are parasite vectors or intermediate hosts, it is also essential to understand how the epigenetic machinery functions to better decipher the interplay between host and parasite. Methods. The CpGo/e ratios were used as a proxy to investigate the occurrence of CpG methylation in B. glabrata coding regions. The presence of DNA methylation in B. glabrata was also confirmed by several experimental approaches: restriction enzymatic digestion with isoschizomers, bisulfite conversion based techniques and LC-MS/MS analysis. Results: In this work, we report that DNA methylation, which is one of the carriers of epigenetic information, occurs in B. glabrata; approximately 2% of cytosine nucleotides are methylated. We describe the methylation machinery of B. glabrata. Methylation occurs predominantly at CpG sites, present at high ratios in coding regions of genes associated with housekeeping functions. We also demonstrate by bisulfite treatment that methylation occurs in multiple copies of Nimbus, a transposable element. Conclusions: This study details DNA methylation for the first time, one of the carriers of epigenetic information in B. glabrata. The general characteristics of DNA methylation that we observed in the B. glabrata genome conform to what epigenetic studies have reported from other invertebrate species. © 2013 Fneich et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

Hidalgo W.,Max Planck Institute For Chemische Okologie | Chandran J.N.,Max Planck Institute For Chemische Okologie | Menezes R.C.,Max Planck Institute For Chemische Okologie | Otalvaro F.,University of Antioquia | Schneider B.,Max Planck Institute For Chemische Okologie
Plant, Cell and Environment | Year: 2016

Phenylphenalenones, polycyclic aromatic natural products from some monocotyledonous plants, are known as phytoalexins in banana (Musa spp.). In this study, 1H nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR)-based metabolomics along with liquid chromatography andmass spectrometry were used to explore the chemical responses of the susceptible 'Williams' and the resistant 'Khai Thong Ruang' Musa varieties to the ascomycete fungusMycosphaerella fijiensis, the agent of the black leaf Sigatoka disease. Principal component analysis discriminated strongly between infected and non-infected plant tissue, mainly because of specialized metabolism induced in response to the fungus. Phenylphenalenones are among the major induced compounds, and the resistance level of the plants was correlated with the progress of the disease.However, a virulent strain of M.fijiensis was able to overcome plant resistance by converting phenylphenalenones to sulfate conjugates. Here, we report the first metabolic detoxification of fungitoxic phenylphenalenones to evade the chemical defence of Musa plants. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

Mithofer A.,Max Planck Institute For Chemische Okologie | Schuman M.C.,Max Planck Institute For Chemische Okologie
Biologie in Unserer Zeit | Year: 2014

Plants are master chemists who synthesize an arsenal of compounds which efficiently defend against herbivore attack. In addition to chemicals which directly affect herbivores, attacked plants release characteristic bouquets of low molecular weight volatile compounds, mostly terpenes and fatty acid derivatives, into their environment. These volatiles serve as signals which can attract predators and parasitoids to attack herbivores, thus indirectly defending the plant. Volatiles may also be perceived by remote parts of the same plant, which can then prepare to defend themselves against imminent attack, and thus react more quickly when attacked. These natural phenomena suggest alternative strategies for agricultural pest management. © 2014 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

Duque L.,University of Antioquia | Restrepo C.,University of Antioquia | Saez J.,University of Antioquia | Gil J.,National University of Colombia | And 2 more authors.
Tetrahedron Letters | Year: 2010

5-Methoxy-3H-naphtho[2,1,8-mna]xanthen-3-one (musafluorone, 1), the only naphthoxanthenone reported so far from Musaceae, was synthesized starting from 2-naphthol in nine steps and resulted in an overall yield of 3%. Grignard addition of phenylmagnesium bromide to 4-methoxyperinaphthenone afforded the corresponding 4-methoxy-9-phenylphenalenone which, after epoxidation and methyl transposition, was subjected to a photochemical cyclization procedure to furnish 1. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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