Virus-like particle production in atmospheric eubacteria isolates

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Culturable eubacterial isolates were collected at various altitudes in Earth’s atmosphere to include ~1.5 m above ground in Tallahassee, Florida, USA, ~10.0 m above sea level over the mid-Atlantic ridge (~15oN), ~ 20 km above ground over the continental United States, ~20 km above sea level over the Pacific Ocean near southern California and from the atmosphere of Carlsbad Cavern, Carlsbad Cavern National Park, New Mexico, USA. Isolates were screened for the presence of inducible virus-like particles (VLP) through use of mitomycin C and epifluorescent direct counts. We determined that 92.7% of the isolates carried inducible (VLP) counts in exposed versus non-exposed culture controls and that the relationship was statistically significant. Further statistical analyses revealed that the numbers of isolates that demonstrated VLP production did not vary among collection sites. These data demonstrate a high prevalence of VLP generation in isolates collected in the lower atmosphere and at extreme altitudes. Also shows that species of eubacteria that are resistant to the rigors of atmospheric transport play a significant role in long-range atmospheric inter- and intra-continental dispersion of VLP and that long-range atmospheric transport of VLP may enhance rates of evolution at the microbial scale in receiving environments.
Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Virus-like particle production in atmospheric eubacteria isolates
Series title Atmosphere
DOI 10.3390/atmos10070417
Volume 10
Issue 7
Year Published 2019
Language English
Publisher MDPI
Contributing office(s) St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center
Description 417, 12 p.
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