“ A green alga with throat- and stomach-like structures can swallow and digest bacteria when deprived of light, further bolstering Lynn Margulis's widely accepted idea ...”
James White's insight:
We have observed the same bacterial endocytosis phenomenon in vascular plants. Roots of many vascular plants are seen to endocytize bacteria after which they gradually degrade within cells. A Queensland, Australia group of investigators has referred to the phenomenon as rhizophagy. However, we think similar endocytosis occures also in shoot tissues where bacteria enter meristematic leaf tissues.
Coculturing the fungal endophyte Fusarium tricinctum with the bacterium Bacillus subtilis 168 trpC2 on solid rice medium resulted in an up to 78-fold increase in the accumulation in constitutively present secondary metabolites that included lateropyrone (5), cyclic depsipeptides of the enniatin type (6–8), and the lipopeptide fusaristatin A (9). In addition, four compounds (1–4) including (−)-citreoisocoumarin (2) as well as three new natural products (1, 3, and 4) were not present in discrete fungal and bacterial controls and only detected in the cocultures. The new compounds were identified as macrocarpon C (1), 2-(carboxymethylamino)benzoic acid (3), and (−)-citreoisocoumarinol (4) by analysis of the 1D and 2D NMR and HRMS data. Enniatins B1 (7) and A1 (8), whose production was particularly enhanced, inhibited the growth of the cocultivated B. subtilis strain with minimal inhibitory concentrations (MICs) of 16 and 8 μg/mL, respectively, and were also active against Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pneumoniae, and Enterococcus faecalis with MIC values in the range 2–8 μg/mL. In addition, lateropyrone (5), which was constitutively present in F. tricinctum, displayed good antibacterial activity against B. subtilis, S. aureus, S. pneumoniae, and E. faecalis, with MIC values ranging from 2 to 8 μg/mL. All active compounds were equally effective against a multiresistant clinical isolate of S. aureus and a susceptible reference strain of the same species. Antonius R. B. Ola†‡, Dhana Thomy†, Daowan Lai*†, Heike Brötz-Oesterhelt†, and Peter ProkschJ. Nat. Prod., Article ASAPDOI: 10.1021/np400589h
James White's insight:
Plants host both fungal and bacterial endophytes. Synergistic effects of fungal and bacterial endophytes in plantation could enhance beneficial effects on hosts. The results shown here in vitro could also occur in plants.
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