In order to better understand the relationships among current Nostocales cyanobacterial blooms, eight genomes were sequenced from cultured isolates or from environmental metagenomes of recent planktonic Nostocales blooms. Phylogenomic analysis of publicly available sequences placed the new genomes among a group of 15 genomes from four continents in a distinct ADA clade (Anabaena/Dolichospermum/Aphanizomenon) within the Nostocales. This clade contains four species-level groups, two of which include members with both Anabaena-like and Aphanizomenon flos-aquae-like morphology. The genomes contain many repetitive genetic elements and a sizable pangenome, in which ABC-type transporters are highly represented. Alongside common core genes for photosynthesis, the differentiation of N2-fixing heterocysts, and the uptake and incorporation of the major nutrients P, N and S, we identified several gene pathways in the pangenome that may contribute to niche partitioning. Genes for problematic secondary metabolites-cyanotoxins and taste-and-odor compounds-were sporadically present, as were other polyketide synthase (PKS) and nonribosomal peptide synthetase (NRPS) gene clusters. By contrast, genes predicted to encode the ribosomally generated bacteriocin peptides were found in all genomes.
Keywords: Filamentous cyanobacteria; Genomics; Metagenomics.
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