Genomic Characteristics of the Toxic Bloom-Forming Cyanobacterium Microcystis aeruginosa NIES-102

J Genomics. 2020 Jan 1;8:1-6. doi: 10.7150/jgen.40978. eCollection 2020.


Microcystis aeruginosa, a bloom-forming cyanobacterium distributed mainly in freshwater environments, can be divided into at least 12 groups (A-K and X) based on multi-locus phylogenetic analyses. In this study, we characterized the genome of microcystin-producing M. aeruginosa NIES-102, assigned to group A, isolated from Lake Kasumigaura, Japan. The complete genome sequence of M. aeruginosa NIES-102 comprised a 5.87-Mbp circular chromosome containing 5,330 coding sequences. The genome was the largest among all sequenced genomes for the species. In a comparison with the genome of M. aeruginosa NIES-843, which belongs to the same group, the microcystin biosynthetic gene cluster and CRISPR-Cas locus were highly similar. A synteny analysis revealed small-scale rearrangements between the two genomes. Genes encoding transposases were more abundant in these two genomes than in other Microcystis genomes. Our results improve our understanding of structural genomic changes and adaptation to a changing environment in the species.

Keywords: Lake Kasumigaura; Microcystis aeruginosa; algal bloom; cyanobacteria; genome; microcystin.