Gene Prospecting from Microbes

The centre is focused on the study of identification, isolation and molecular characterization of genes for acid tolerance.

The following are the objectives of the programme:

  • Create of acid tolerant and acid sensitive mutants and generate ESTs from subtracted cDNA libraries using acid sensitive and acid acclimated bacteria
  • Proteomic analysis of acid tolerant and acid sensitive bacteria and identify proteins synthesized in response to acidity
  • Prospect acid tolerant genes from soil bacteria through metagenomics
  • Identify candidate acid resistance genes/proteins using bioinformatics analysis of the ESTs and protein sequence database generated from objectives 1, 2 and 3
  • Functionally determine the role of candidate genes/proteins in acid tolerance mechanisms

Important collaborators of the programme are:

  • CSIRO Plant Industry, Australia as consulting organization for new gene contrsuction, parallel transformation work through deputation of student/research scholars from AAU, Jorhat
  • MAHYCO, Maharastra for parallel transformation work as well as bioassay, biosafety analysis and introgression breeding
  • IARI, New Delhi for constructing transgenes and introgression breeding

Scientists Involved

Scientists involved with this programme are Dr. M Barooah, Dr. R C Boro, Dr. D Borah and Dr. R Baruah from AAU while collaborating scientist is Dr Alan Richardson from CSIRO, Australia

Salient accomplishment:

  • In all 10 acid tolerance genes were identified
  • Nine genes (dgk, fadS1, nitrate reductase; met-ABC-transporter, Urease cassette (ure A-G), Glutamate decarboxylase and hypA, hypB) were cloned
  • The Met-ABC transporter protein was produced in E coli
  • 300 agriculturally important isolates characterized and confirmed about 20 % - 50% more efficient when cultured in pH 7.0

Future line of research:

  • Integrated analysis of proteomic and transcriptomic data set (generated in the phase I of the project) to identify genes involved with acid stress
  • Validation of prospected genes by differential expression of transcripts under acid stress (as prospected from objective 1)
  • Functional validation of potential acid-tolerance genes through cloning and heterologous expression
  • Development of systems-level models endowing quantitative ‘omics’ information as a function of pH under different conditions.