Drastic Genome Reduction in an Herbivore's Pectinolytic Symbiont.

  title={Drastic Genome Reduction in an Herbivore's Pectinolytic Symbiont.},
  author={Hassan Salem and Eugen Bauer and Roy Kirsch and Aileen Berasategui and Michael G. Cripps and Benjamin Weiss and Ryuichi Koga and Kayoko Fukumori and Heiko Vogel and Takema Fukatsu and Martin Kaltenpoth},
  volume={171 7},
Pectin, an integral component of the plant cell wall, is a recalcitrant substrate against enzymatic challenges by most animals. In characterizing the source of a leaf beetle's (Cassida rubiginosa) pectin-degrading phenotype, we demonstrate its dependency on an extracellular bacterium housed in specialized organs connected to the foregut. Despite possessing the smallest genome (0.27 Mb) of any organism not subsisting within a host cell, the symbiont nonetheless retained a functional pectinolytic… CONTINUE READING
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