Xanthomonas citri jumbo phage XacN1 exhibits a wide host range and high complement of tRNA genes
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Xanthomonas virus (phage) XacN1 is a novel jumbo myovirus infecting Xanthomonas citri, the causative agent of Asian citrus canker. Its linear 384,670 bp double-stranded DNA genome encodes 592 proteins and presents the longest (66 kbp) direct terminal repeats (DTRs) among sequenced viral genomes. The DTRs harbor 56 tRNA genes, which correspond to all 20 amino acids and represent the largest number of tRNA genes reported in a viral genome. Codon usage analysis revealed a propensity for the phage encoded tRNAs to target codons that are highly used by the phage but less frequently by its host. The existence of these tRNA genes and seven additional translation-related genes as well as a chaperonin gene found in the XacN1 genome suggests a relative independence of phage replication on host molecular machinery, leading to a prediction of a wide host range for this jumbo phage. We confirmed the prediction by showing a wider host range of XacN1 than other X. citri phages in an infection test against a panel of host strains. Phylogenetic analyses revealed a clade of phages composed of XacN1 and ten other jumbo phages, indicating an evolutionary stable large genome size for this group of phages.
This research was supported by JSPS KAKENHI (Grant nos. 24380049, 15H04477, 16KT0020) as well as a Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research on Innovative Areas from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Science, Sports, and Technology (MEXT) of Japan (No. 16H06429, 16K21723, and 16H06437). Computational work was completed at the SuperComputer System, Institute for Chemical Research, Kyoto University.
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Graduate School of Advanced Sciences of Matter