Ramlibacter tataouinensis NEUF2011
A Microbial Biorealm page on the genus Ramlibacter tataouinensis NEUF2011
Higher order taxa
Domain; Phylum; Class; Order; family [Others may be used. Use NCBI link to find]
Bacteria; Proteobacteria; Betaproteobacteria; Burkholderiales; Comamonadaceae; Ramlibacter; tataouinensis
Description and significance
Describe the appearance, habitat, etc. of the organism, and why you think it is important.
R. tataouinensis was first isolated from South Tunisia in a semi-arid region. It is a pleomorphic gram-negative betaproteobacterium with both rod-shaped and spherical cells in pure culture. It is unique in that its spherical cyst-like cells are very tolerant of desiccation and are capable of division by binary fission while its rod-shaped cells are motile and able to form colonies in new environments by reverting back to desiccation-resistant spherical cells. This enables them to survive and migrate in dry desert environments.
Describe the size and content of the genome. How many chromosomes? Circular or linear? Other interesting features? What is known about its sequence?
The genome of Ramlibacter tataouinensis is composed of a singular circular chromosome that is 4,070,194 base pairs with a guanine and cytosine content of seventy percent, among the highest of proteobacteria. Additionally, the average gene length is 964 base pairs. R. tataouinensis has genetic characterstics that greatly resemble those of aerobic chemo-organotrophic bacterial strain. Furthermore, this strain, R. tataouinensis TTB310 contains genes that encode for proteins to protect the organism against toxicity of reactive oxygen species. It is the first to reveal the kaiC gene that is rarely found within non-photosynthetic bacteria. The gene functions similarly to photosynthetic bacteria by allowing the organism to create an internal molecular clock to coordinate its cell cycle based on the availability of water found in dry and hot desert environments. (Gilles, 2011)
Cell structure and metabolism
Interesting features of cell structure; how it gains energy; what important molecules it produces.
Habitat; symbiosis; contributions to the environment.
Ramlibacter tataouinensis was first isolated in the Tatauoine meteorite in the desert of South Tunisia and is now known as the desert bacterium due to its unique cell cyle (Atomique, 2011). Desert habitats are considered one of the most extreme environments for microbial organisms because of the scarcity of water. Due to little rain and large variations in temperature, mineral content, and high levels of UV radiation desert microbes need to be highly adapted for the extreme environment. Ramlibacter tataouinensis survives in this habitat through desiccation and division into motile rods (G De Luca, 2011).
How does this organism cause disease? Human, animal, plant hosts? Virulence factors, as well as patient symptoms.
Enter summaries of the most recent research here--at least three required
Describe something you fing "cool" about this microbe.
[Sample reference] Takai, K., Sugai, A., Itoh, T., and Horikoshi, K. "Palaeococcus ferrophilus gen. nov., sp. nov., a barophilic, hyperthermophilic archaeon from a deep-sea hydrothermal vent chimney". International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology. 2000. Volume 50. p. 489-500.
 Gommeauxa, M., Barakata, M., Lesourdb, M., Thiérya, J., Heulin, T. "A morphological transition in the pleomorphic bacterium Ramlibacter tataouinensis TTB310". Research in Microbiology. 2005. Volume 156(10). p. 1026-1030.
 Heulin, T., Barakat, M., Christen, R., Lesourd, M., Sutra, L., De Luca, G., Achouak, W. "Ramlibacter tataouinensis gen. nov., sp. nov., and Ramlibacter henchirensis sp. nov., cyst-producing bacteria isolated from subdesert soil in Tunisia". International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology. 2003. Volume 53. p. 589–594.
 De Luca, G., Barakat, M., Ortet, P., Fochesato, S., Jourlin-Castelli, C., et al. "The Cyst-Dividing Bacterium Ramlibacter tataouinensis TTB310 Genome Reveals a Well-Stocked Toolbox for Adaptation to a Desert Environment". PLoS ONE. 2011. Volume 6(9): e23784.
Edited by Maria Castano, Alexandra Tsolias, Rebecca Thibault, and Kevin Wu (students of Iris Keren)