Genomic characterization of candidate division LCP-89 reveals an atypical cell wall structure, microcompartment production, and dual respiratory and fermentative capacities

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© 2019 American Society for Microbiology. Recent experimental and bioinformatic advances enable the recovery of genomes belonging to yet-uncultured microbial lineages directly from environmental samples. Here, we report on the recovery and characterization of single amplified genomes (SAGs) and metagenome-assembled genomes (MAGs) representing candidate phylum LCP-89, previously defined based on 16S rRNA gene sequences. Analysis of LCP-89 genomes recovered from Zodletone Spring, an anoxic spring in Oklahoma, predicts slow-growing, rod-shaped organisms. LCP-89 genomes contain genes for cell wall lipopolysaccharide (LPS) production but lack the entire machinery for peptidoglycan biosynthesis, suggesting an atypical cell wall structure. The genomes, however, encode S-layer homology domain-containing proteins, as well as machinery for the biosynthesis of CMP-legionaminate, inferring the possession of an S-layer glycoprotein. A nearly complete chemotaxis machinery coupled to the absence of flagellar synthesis and assembly genes argues for the utilization of alternative types of motility. A strict anaerobic lifestyle is predicted, with dual respiratory (nitrite ammonification) and fermentative capacities. Predicted substrates include a wide range of sugars and sugar alcohols and a few amino acids. The capability of rhamnose metabolism is confirmed by the identification of bacterial microcompartment genes to sequester the toxic intermediates generated. Comparative genomic analysis identified differences in oxygen sensitivities, respiratory capabilities, substrate utilization preferences, and fermentation end products between LCP-89 genomes and those belonging to its four sister phyla (Calditrichota, SM32-31, AABM5-125-24, and KSB1) within the broader FCB (Fibrobacteres-Chlorobi-Bacteroidetes) superphylum. Our results provide a detailed characterization of members of the candidate division LCP-89 and highlight the importance of reconciling 16S rRNA-based and genomebased phylogenies.

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Applied and Environmental Microbiology

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