Protocols in Current Issue
Protocols in Past Issues
0 Q&A 492 Views Jun 20, 2024

Human babesiosis is a tick-borne disease caused by Babesia pathogens. The disease, which presents with malaria-like symptoms, can be life-threatening, especially in individuals with weakened immune systems and the elderly. The worldwide prevalence of human babesiosis has been gradually rising, prompting alarm among public health experts. In other pathogens, genetic techniques have proven to be valuable tools for conducting functional studies to understand the importance of specific genes in development and pathogenesis as well as to validate novel cellular targets for drug discovery. Genetic manipulation methods have been established for several non-human Babesia and Theileria species and, more recently, have begun to be developed for human Babesia parasites. We have previously reported the development of a method for genetic manipulation of the human pathogen Babesia duncani. This method is based on positive selection using the hDHFR gene as a selectable marker, whose expression is regulated by the ef-1aB promoter, along with homology regions that facilitate integration into the gene of interest through homologous recombination. Herein, we provide a detailed description of the steps needed to implement this strategy in B. duncani to study gene function. It is anticipated that the implementation of this method will significantly improve our understanding of babesiosis and facilitate the development of novel and more effective therapeutic strategies for the treatment of human babesiosis.

0 Q&A 419 Views Mar 20, 2024

Erwinia persicina is a gram-negative bacterium that causes diseases in plants. Recently, E. persicina BST187 was shown to exhibit broad-spectrum antibacterial activity due to its inhibitory effects on bacterial acetyl-CoA carboxylase, demonstrating promising potential as a biological control agent. However, the lack of suitable genetic manipulation techniques limits its exploitation and industrial application. Here, we developed an efficient transformation system for E. persicina. Using pET28a as the starting vector, the expression cassette of the red fluorescent protein–encoding gene with the strong promoter J23119 was constructed and transformed into BST187 competent cells to verify the overexpression system. Moreover, suicide plasmid–mediated genome editing systems was developed, and lacZ was knocked out of BST187 genome by parental conjugation transfer using the recombinant suicide vector pKNOCK-sacB-km-lacZ. Therefore, both the transformation and suicide plasmid–mediated genome editing system will greatly facilitate genetic manipulations in E. persicina and promote its development and application.

Key features

• Our studies establish a genetic manipulation system for Erwinia persicina, providing a versatile tool for studying the gene function of non-model microorganisms.

• Requires approximately 6–10 days to complete modification of a chromosome locus.

Graphical overview

0 Q&A 771 Views Apr 20, 2023

Genetic strategies such as gene disruption and fluorescent protein tagging largely contribute to understanding the molecular mechanisms of biological functions in bacteria. However, the methods for gene replacement remain underdeveloped for the filamentous bacteria Leptothrix cholodnii SP-6. Their cell chains are encased in sheath composed of entangled nanofibrils, which may prevent the conjugation for gene transfer. Here, we describe a protocol optimized for gene disruption through gene transfer mediated by conjugation with Escherichia coli S17-1 with details on cell ratio, sheath removal, and loci validation. The obtained deletion mutants for specific genes can be used to clarify the biological functions of the proteins encoded by the target genes.

Graphical overview

0 Q&A 4806 Views Apr 5, 2019
The unicellular red alga Cyanidioschyzon merolae has been used as a eukaryotic photosynthetic model for various basic and applied studies. Although the nuclear genome of C. merolae can be modified by homologous recombination with exogenously introduced DNA, it has been difficult to modify multiple chromosome loci within the same strain because of the limited number of available positive selection markers. Recently, we reported a modified URA5.3 gene cassette (URA5.3T), which can be used repeatedly for nuclear genome transformation using the pMKT plasmid vectors for epitope tagging (3x FLAG- or 3x Myc-) of nuclear-encoded proteins. In addition, these plasmid vectors can also be used to knock out multiple genes one by one. This report describes the construction of DNA fragments for transformation and the detailed transformation procedure.
0 Q&A 8141 Views Jul 20, 2018
The smut fungus Ustilago maydis is an established model organism for elucidating how biotrophic pathogens colonize plants and how gene families contribute to virulence. Here we describe a step by step protocol for the generation of CRISPR plasmids for single and multiplexed gene editing in U. maydis. Furthermore, we describe the necessary steps required for generating edited clonal populations, losing the Cas9 containing plasmid, and for selecting the desired clones.

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