[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The development and progression of cancer depend on its genetic characteristics as well as on the interactions with its microenvironment. Understanding these interactions may contribute to diagnostic and prognostic evaluations and to the development of new cancer therapies. Aiming to investigate potential mechanisms by which the tumor microenvironment might contribute to a cancer phenotype, we evaluated soluble paracrine factors produced by stromal and neoplastic cells which may influence proliferation and gene and protein expression.
The study was carried out on the epithelial cancer cell line (Hep-2) and fibroblasts isolated from a primary oral cancer. We combined a conditioned-medium technique with subtraction hybridization approach, quantitative PCR and proteomics, in order to evaluate gene and protein expression influenced by soluble paracrine factors produced by stromal and neoplastic cells.
We observed that conditioned medium from fibroblast cultures (FCM) inhibited proliferation and induced apoptosis in Hep-2 cells. In neoplastic cells, 41 genes and 5 proteins exhibited changes in expression levels in response to FCM and, in fibroblasts, 17 genes and 2 proteins showed down-regulation in response to conditioned medium from Hep-2 cells (HCM). Nine genes were selected and the expression results of 6 down-regulated genes (ARID4A, CALR, GNB2L1, RNF10, SQSTM1, USP9X) were validated by real time PCR.
A significant and common denominator in the results was the potential induction of signaling changes associated with immune or inflammatory response in the absence of a specific protein.
BMC Medical Genomics 01/2010; 3:14. · 3.47 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Annexin A1 (ANXA1) is a soluble cytoplasmic protein, moving to membranes when calcium levels are elevated. ANXA1 has also been shown to move to the nucleus or outside the cells, depending on tyrosine-kinase signalling, thus interfering in cytoskeletal organization and cell differentiation, mostly in inflammatory and neoplastic processes. The aim was to investigate subcellular patterns of immunohistochemical expression of ANXA1 in neoplastic and non-neoplastic samples from patients with laryngeal squamous cell carcinomas (LSCC), to elucidate the role of ANXA1 in laryngeal carcinogenesis.
Serial analysis of gene expression experiments detected reduced expression of ANXA1 gene in LSCC compared with the corresponding non-neoplastic margins. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction confirmed ANXA1 low expression in 15 LSCC and eight matched normal samples. Thus, we investigated subcellular patterns of immunohistochemical expression of ANXA1 in 241 paraffin-embedded samples from 95 patients with LSCC. The results showed ANXA1 down-regulation in dysplastic, tumourous and metastatic lesions and provided evidence for the progressive migration of ANXA1 from the nucleus towards the membrane during laryngeal tumorigenesis.
ANXA1 dysregulation was observed early in laryngeal carcinogenesis, in intra-epithelial neoplasms; it was not found related to prognostic parameters, such as nodal metastases.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Denture stomatitis is a common lesion that affects denture wearers. Its multifactorial etiology seems to depend on a complex and poorly characterized biofilm. The purpose of this study was to assess the composition of the microbial biofilm obtained from complete denture wearers with and without denture stomatitis using culture-independent methods.
Samples were collected from healthy denture wearers and from patients with denture stomatitis. Libraries comprising about 600 cloned 16S ribosomal DNA (rDNA) bacterial sequences and 192 cloned eukaryotic internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region sequences, obtained by polymerase chain reactions, were analyzed.
The partial 16S rDNA sequences revealed a total of 82 bacterial species identified in healthy subjects and patients with denture stomatitis. Twenty-seven bacterial species were detected in both biofilms, 29 species were exclusively present in patients with denture stomatitis, and 26 were found only in healthy subjects. Analysis of the ITS region revealed the presence of Candida sp. in both biofilms.
The results revealed the extent of the microbial flora, suggesting the existence of distinct biofilms in healthy subjects and in patients with denture stomatitis.
Oral Microbiology and Immunology 11/2008; 23(5):419-24. · 2.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) is one of the most common malignancies in humans. The average 5-year survival rate is one of the lowest among aggressive cancers, showing no significant improvement in recent years. When detected early, HNSCC has a good prognosis, but most patients present metastatic disease at the time of diagnosis, which significantly reduces survival rate. Despite extensive research, no molecular markers are currently available for diagnostic or prognostic purposes. METHODS: Aiming to identify differentially-expressed genes involved in laryngeal squamous cell carcinoma (LSCC) development and progression, we generated individual Serial Analysis of Gene Expression (SAGE) libraries from a metastatic and non-metastatic larynx carcinoma, as well as from a normal larynx mucosa sample. Approximately 54,000 unique tags were sequenced in three libraries. RESULTS: Statistical data analysis identified a subset of 1,216 differentially expressed tags between tumor and normal libraries, and 894 differentially expressed tags between metastatic and non-metastatic carcinomas. Three genes displaying differential regulation, one down-regulated (KRT31) and two up-regulated (BST2, MFAP2), as well as one with a non-significant differential expression pattern (GNA15) in our SAGE data were selected for real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in a set of HNSCC samples. Consistent with our statistical analysis, quantitative PCR confirmed the upregulation of BST2 and MFAP2 and the downregulation of KRT31 when samples of HNSCC were compared to tumor-free surgical margins. As expected, GNA15 presented a non-significant differential expression pattern when tumor samples were compared to normal tissues. CONCLUSION: To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study reporting SAGE data in head and neck squamous cell tumors. Statistical analysis was effective in identifying differentially expressed genes reportedly involved in cancer development. The differential expression of a subset of genes was confirmed in additional larynx carcinoma samples and in carcinomas from a distinct head and neck subsite. This result suggests the existence of potential common biomarkers for prognosis and targeted-therapy development in this heterogeneous type of tumor.
BMC Medical Genomics 01/2008; 1:56. · 3.47 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The SCF (Skp1-Cul1-F-box) complex is one of the several E3 ligase enzymes and it catalyzes protein ubiquitination and degradation by the 26S proteasome. Rbx1 is a member of the SCF complex in humans and HRT1 is its yeast orthologue. A cDNA encoding a Schistosoma mansoni Rbx1 homolog was cloned and functionally characterized. Heterologous functional complementation in yeast showed that the worm SmRbx gene was able to complement the HRT1yeast null mutation. Gene deletion constructs for N- and C-termini truncated proteins were used to transform hrt1(-) yeast mutant strains, allowing us to observe that regions reported to be involved in the interaction with cullin1 (Cul1) were essential for SmRbx function. Yeast two-hybrid assays using SmRbx and yeast Cul1 confirmed that SmRbx, but not the mutant SmRbxDelta24N, lacking the N-terminus of the protein, was capable of interacting with Cul1. These results suggest that SmRbx protein is involved in the SCF complex formation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recurrent aphthous ulcers are common lesions of the oral mucosa of which the etiology is unknown. This study aimed to estimate the bacterial diversity in the lesions and in control mucosa in pooled samples using a culture-independent molecular approach.
Samples were collected from ten healthy individuals and ten individuals with a clinical history of recurrent aphthous ulcers. After DNA extraction, the 16S ribosomal RNA bacterial gene was amplified by polymerase chain reaction with universal primers; amplicons were cloned, sequenced and matched to the GenBank database.
A total of 535 clones were analyzed, defining 95 bacterial species. We identified 62 putative novel phylotypes. In recurrent aphthous ulcer lesions 57 phylotypes were detected, of which 11 were known species. Control samples had 38 phylotypes, five of which were already known. Only three species or phylotypes were abundant and common to both groups (Gemella haemolysans, Streptococcus mitis strain 209 and Streptococcus pneumoniae R6). One genus was found only in recurrent aphthous ulcer samples (Prevotella) corresponding to 16% of all lesion-derived clones.
The microbiota found in recurrent aphthous ulcers and in the control groups diverged markedly and the rich variety of genera found can provide a new starting point for individual qualitative and quantitative analyses of bacteria associated with this oral condition.
Oral Microbiology and Immunology 09/2007; 22(4):225-31. · 2.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We present here the sequence of the mitochondrial DNA of the pathogenic thermodimorphic fungus Paracoccidioides brasiliensis, agent of an endemic disease in most South American countries. The sequenced genome has 71 334 bp and is organized as a circular molecule with two gaps of unknown size flanking the middle exon of the nad5 gene. We located genes coding for the three subunits of the ATP synthase (atp6, atp8 and atp9), the apocytochrome b (cob), three subunits of the cytochrome c oxidase enzyme complex (cox1, cox2 and cox3), seven subunits of the reduced nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide ubiquinone oxidoreductase (nad1, nad2, nad3, nad4, nad5, nad6 and nad4L) and the large (rnl) and small (rns) subunits of ribosomal RNA. Two maturases and a ribosomal protein (rms5) are located inside introns. Twenty-five tRNAs were identified with acceptors for all 20 amino acids. Seven polypurine/polypyrimidine tracts (140-240 bp) have been found in this genome. All genes are in the same orientation over the genome, while their order is closest to the mitochondrial genomes from Penicillium marneffei and Aspergillus nidulans.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We report here the complete nucleotide sequence of the 30.9-kb mitochondrial genome of the dermatophyte fungus Epidermophyton floccosum. All genes are encoded on the same DNA strand and include seven subunits of the reduced nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide ubiquinone oxireductase (nad1, nad2, nad3, nad4, nad4L, nad5, and nad6), three subunits of cytochrome oxidase (cox1, cox2, and cox3), apocytochrome b (cob), three subunits of ATP synthase (atp6, atp8, and atp9), the small and large ribosomal RNAs (rns and rnl), and 25 tRNAs. A ribosomal protein gene (rps5) is present as an intronic ORF in the large ribosomal subunit. The genes coding for cob and cox1 carry one intron and nad5 carries two introns with ORFs. The mtDNA of E. floccosum has the same gene order as Trichophyton rubrum mtDNA, with the exception of some tRNA genes. Maximum likelihood phylogenetic analysis confirms T. rubrum as a close relative of E. floccosum. This is the first complete mitochondrial sequence of a species of the order Onygenales. This sequence is available under GenBank accession number AY916130.
Current Genetics 06/2006; 49(5):302-8. · 2.41 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Paracoccidioides brasiliensis is a thermodimorphic fungus associated with paracoccidioidomycosis (PCM), a systemic mycosis prevalent in South America. In humans, infection starts by inhalation of fungal propagules, which reach the pulmonary epithelium and transform into the yeast parasitic form. Thus, the mycelium-to-yeast transition is of particular interest because conversion to yeast is essential for infection. We have used a P. brasiliensis biochip carrying sequences of 4,692 genes from this fungus to monitor gene expression at several time points of the mycelium-to-yeast morphological shift (from 5 to 120 h). The results revealed a total of 2,583 genes that displayed statistically significant modulation in at least one experimental time point. Among the identified gene homologues, some encoded enzymes involved in amino acid catabolism, signal transduction, protein synthesis, cell wall metabolism, genome structure, oxidative stress response, growth control, and development. The expression pattern of 20 genes was independently verified by real-time reverse transcription-PCR, revealing a high degree of correlation between the data obtained with the two methodologies. One gene, encoding 4-hydroxyl-phenyl pyruvate dioxygenase (4-HPPD), was highly overexpressed during the mycelium-to-yeast differentiation, and the use of NTBC [2-(2-nitro-4-trifluoromethylbenzoyl)-cyclohexane-1,3-dione], a specific inhibitor of 4-HPPD activity, as well as that of NTBC derivatives, was able to inhibit growth and differentiation of the pathogenic yeast phase of the fungus in vitro. These data set the stage for further studies involving NTBC and its derivatives as new chemotherapeutic agents against PCM and confirm the potential of array-based approaches to identify new targets for the development of alternative treatments against pathogenic microorganisms.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A detailed genome mapping analysis of 213,636 expressed sequence tags (EST) derived from nontumor and tumor tissues of the oral cavity, larynx, pharynx, and thyroid was done. Transcripts matching known human genes were identified; potential new splice variants were flagged and subjected to manual curation, pointing to 788 putatively new alternative splicing isoforms, the majority (75%) being insertion events. A subset of 34 new splicing isoforms (5% of 788 events) was selected and 23 (68%) were confirmed by reverse transcription-PCR and DNA sequencing. Putative new genes were revealed, including six transcripts mapped to well-studied chromosomes such as 22, as well as transcripts that mapped to 253 intergenic regions. In addition, 2,251 noncoding intronic RNAs, eventually involved in transcriptional regulation, were found. A set of 250 candidate markers for loss of heterozygosis or gene amplification was selected by identifying transcripts that mapped to genomic regions previously known to be frequently amplified or deleted in head, neck, and thyroid tumors. Three of these markers were evaluated by quantitative reverse transcription-PCR in an independent set of individual samples. Along with detailed clinical data about tumor origin, the information reported here is now publicly available on a dedicated Web site as a resource for further biological investigation. This first in silico reconstruction of the head, neck, and thyroid transcriptomes points to a wealth of new candidate markers that can be used for future studies on the molecular basis of these tumors. Similar analysis is warranted for a number of other tumors for which large EST data sets are available.
Cancer Research 04/2005; 65(5):1693-9. · 8.65 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Paracoccidioides brasiliensis, a thermodimorphic fungus, is the causative agent of the prevalent systemic mycosis in Latin America, paracoccidioidomycosis (PCM). Here, we describe the microsatellite patterns observed in a collection of P. brasiliensis random sequence tags. We identified 1,117 microsatellite patterns in about 3.8 Mb of unique sequences (0.47% of the total DNA used in the analysis). The majority of these microsatellites (87.5%) are found in noncoding sequences. We used two polymorphic microsatellites located on noncoding and coding sequences, as well as two microsatellites located on introns, as molecular markers to discriminate P. brasiliensis isolates, to look for relationships between the genetic background of the strains and the types of human disease they cause. We did not observe any correlation between the clinical form of human PCM and four simple sequence repeat patterns analyzed.
Journal of Clinical Microbiology 12/2004; 42(11):5007-14. · 4.07 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We report the results of a transcript finishing initiative, undertaken for the purpose of identifying and characterizing novel human transcripts, in which RT-PCR was used to bridge gaps between paired EST clusters, mapped against the genomic sequence. Each pair of EST clusters selected for experimental validation was designated a transcript finishing unit (TFU). A total of 489 TFUs were selected for validation, and an overall efficiency of 43.1% was achieved. We generated a total of 59,975 bp of transcribed sequences organized into 432 exons, contributing to the definition of the structure of 211 human transcripts. The structure of several transcripts reported here was confirmed during the course of this project, through the generation of their corresponding full-length cDNA sequences. Nevertheless, for 21% of the validated TFUs, a full-length cDNA sequence is not yet available in public databases, and the structure of 69.2% of these TFUs was not correctly predicted by computer programs. The TF strategy provides a significant contribution to the definition of the complete catalog of human genes and transcripts, because it appears to be particularly useful for identification of low abundance transcripts expressed in a restricted set of tissues as well as for the delineation of gene boundaries and alternatively spliced isoforms.
Genome Research 08/2004; 14(7):1413-23. · 14.40 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Over 40,000 sugarcane (Saccharum officinarum) consensus sequences assembled from 237,954 expressed sequence tags were compared with the protein and DNA sequences from other angiosperms, including the genomes of Arabidopsis and rice (Oryza sativa). Approximately two-thirds of the sugarcane transcriptome have similar sequences in Arabidopsis. These sequences may represent a core set of proteins or protein domains that are conserved among monocots and eudicots and probably encode for essential angiosperm functions. The remaining sequences represent putative monocot-specific genetic material, one-half of which were found only in sugarcane. These monocot-specific cDNAs represent either novelties or, in many cases, fast-evolving sequences that diverged substantially from their eudicot homologs. The wide comparative genome analysis presented here provides information on the evolutionary changes that underlie the divergence of monocots and eudicots. Our comparative analysis also led to the identification of several not yet annotated putative genes and possible gene loss events in Arabidopsis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To contribute to our understanding of the genome complexity of sugarcane, we undertook a large-scale expressed sequence tag (EST) program. More than 260,000 cDNA clones were partially sequenced from 26 standard cDNA libraries generated from different sugarcane tissues. After the processing of the sequences, 237,954 high-quality ESTs were identified. These ESTs were assembled into 43,141 putative transcripts. Of the assembled sequences, 35.6% presented no matches with existing sequences in public databases. A global analysis of the whole SUCEST data set indicated that 14,409 assembled sequences (33% of the total) contained at least one cDNA clone with a full-length insert. Annotation of the 43,141 assembled sequences associated almost 50% of the putative identified sugarcane genes with protein metabolism, cellular communication/signal transduction, bioenergetics, and stress responses. Inspection of the translated assembled sequences for conserved protein domains revealed 40,821 amino acid sequences with 1415 Pfam domains. Reassembling the consensus sequences of the 43,141 transcripts revealed a 22% redundancy in the first assembling. This indicated that possibly 33,620 unique genes had been identified and indicated that >90% of the sugarcane expressed genes were tagged.
Genome Research 12/2003; 13(12):2725-35. · 14.40 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Whereas genome sequencing defines the genetic potential of an organism, transcript sequencing defines the utilization of this potential and links the genome with most areas of biology. To exploit the information within the human genome in the fight against cancer, we have deposited some two million expressed sequence tags (ESTs) from human tumors and their corresponding normal tissues in the public databases. The data currently define approximately 23,500 genes, of which only approximately 1,250 are still represented only by ESTs. Examination of the EST coverage of known cancer-related (CR) genes reveals that <1% do not have corresponding ESTs, indicating that the representation of genes associated with commonly studied tumors is high. The careful recording of the origin of all ESTs we have produced has enabled detailed definition of where the genes they represent are expressed in the human body. More than 100,000 ESTs are available for seven tissues, indicating a surprising variability of gene usage that has led to the discovery of a significant number of genes with restricted expression, and that may thus be therapeutically useful. The ESTs also reveal novel nonsynonymous germline variants (although the one-pass nature of the data necessitates careful validation) and many alternatively spliced transcripts. Although widely exploited by the scientific community, vindicating our totally open source policy, the EST data generated still provide extensive information that remains to be systematically explored, and that may further facilitate progress toward both the understanding and treatment of human cancers.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 11/2003; 100(23):13418-23. · 9.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Paracoccidioides brasiliensis, a thermodimorphic fungus, is the causative agent of the prevalent systemic mycosis in Latin America, paracoccidioidomycosis. We present here a survey of expressed genes in the yeast pathogenic phase of P. brasiliensis. We obtained 13,490 expressed sequence tags from both 5' and 3' ends. Clustering analysis yielded the partial sequences of 4,692 expressed genes that were functionally classified by similarity to known genes. We have identified several Candida albicans virulence and pathogenicity homologues in P. brasiliensis. Furthermore, we have analyzed the expression of some of these genes during the dimorphic yeast-mycelium-yeast transition by real-time quantitative reverse transcription-PCR. Clustering analysis of the mycelium-yeast transition revealed three groups: (i) RBT, hydrophobin, and isocitrate lyase; (ii) malate dehydrogenase, contigs Pb1067 and Pb1145, GPI, and alternative oxidase; and (iii) ubiquitin, delta-9-desaturase, HSP70, HSP82, and HSP104. The first two groups displayed high mRNA expression in the mycelial phase, whereas the third group showed higher mRNA expression in the yeast phase. Our results suggest the possible conservation of pathogenicity and virulence mechanisms among fungi, expand considerably gene identification in P. brasiliensis, and provide a broader basis for further progress in understanding its biological peculiarities.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Heme A is a prosthetic group of all eukaryotic and some prokaryotic cytochrome oxidases. This heme differs from heme B (protoheme) at two carbon positions of the porphyrin ring. The synthesis of heme A begins with farnesylation of the vinyl group at carbon C-2 of heme B. The heme O product of this reaction is then converted to heme A by a further oxidation of a methyl to a formyl group on C-8. In a previous study (Barros, M. H., Carlson, C. G., Glerum, D. M., and Tzagoloff, A. (2001) FEBS Lett. 492, 133-138) we proposed that the formyl group is formed by an initial hydroxylation of the C-8 methyl by a three-component monooxygenase consisting of Cox15p, ferredoxin, and ferredoxin reductase. In the present study three lines of evidence confirm a requirement of ferredoxin in heme A synthesis. 1) Temperature-conditional yah1 mutants grown under restrictive conditions display a decrease in heme A relative to heme B. 2) The incorporation of radioactive delta-aminolevulinic acid into heme A is reduced in yah1 ts but not in the wild type after the shift to the restrictive temperature; and 3) the overexpression of Cox15p in cytochrome oxidase mutants that accumulate heme O leads to an increased mitochondrial concentration of heme A. The increase in heme A is greater in mutants that overexpress Cox15p and ferredoxin. These results are consistent with a requirement of ferredoxin and indirectly of ferredoxin reductase in hydroxylation of heme O.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 04/2002; 277(12):9997-10002. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Open reading frame expressed sequences tags (ORESTES) differ from conventional ESTs by providing sequence data from the central protein coding portion of transcripts. We generated a total of 696,745 ORESTES sequences from 24 human tissues and used a subset of the data that correspond to a set of 15,095 full-length mRNAs as a means of assessing the efficiency of the strategy and its potential contribution to the definition of the human transcriptome. We estimate that ORESTES sampled over 80% of all highly and moderately expressed, and between 40% and 50% of rarely expressed, human genes. In our most thoroughly sequenced tissue, the breast, the 130,000 ORESTES generated are derived from transcripts from an estimated 70% of all genes expressed in that tissue, with an equally efficient representation of both highly and poorly expressed genes. In this respect, we find that the capacity of the ORESTES strategy both for gene discovery and shotgun transcript sequence generation significantly exceeds that of conventional ESTs. The distribution of ORESTES is such that many human transcripts are now represented by a scaffold of partial sequences distributed along the length of each gene product. The experimental joining of the scaffold components, by reverse transcription-PCR, represents a direct route to transcript finishing that may represent a useful alternative to full-length cDNA cloning.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 11/2001; 98(21):12103-8. · 9.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Transcribed sequences in the human genome can be identified with confidence only by alignment with sequences derived from cDNAs synthesized from naturally occurring mRNAs. We constructed a set of 250,000 cDNAs that represent partial expressed gene sequences and that are biased toward the central coding regions of the resulting transcripts. They are termed ORF expressed sequence tags (ORESTES). The 250,000 ORESTES were assembled into 81,429 contigs. Of these, 1, 181 (1.45%) were found to match sequences in chromosome 22 with at least one ORESTES contig for 162 (65.6%) of the 247 known genes, for 67 (44.6%) of the 150 related genes, and for 45 of the 148 (30.4%) EST-predicted genes on this chromosome. Using a set of stringent criteria to validate our sequences, we identified a further 219 previously unannotated transcribed sequences on chromosome 22. Of these, 171 were in fact also defined by EST or full length cDNA sequences available in GenBank but not utilized in the initial annotation of the first human chromosome sequence. Thus despite representing less than 15% of all expressed human sequences in the public databases at the time of the present analysis, ORESTES sequences defined 48 transcribed sequences on chromosome 22 not defined by other sequences. All of the transcribed sequences defined by ORESTES coincided with DNA regions predicted as encoding exons by genscan. (http://genes.mit.edu/GENSCAN.html).
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 12/2000; 97(23):12690-3. · 9.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Xylella fastidiosa is a fastidious, xylem-limited bacterium that causes a range of economically important plant diseases. Here we report the complete genome sequence of X. fastidiosa clone 9a5c, which causes citrus variegated chlorosis--a serious disease of orange trees. The genome comprises a 52.7% GC-rich 2,679,305-base-pair (bp) circular chromosome and two plasmids of 51,158 bp and 1,285 bp. We can assign putative functions to 47% of the 2,904 predicted coding regions. Efficient metabolic functions are predicted, with sugars as the principal energy and carbon source, supporting existence in the nutrient-poor xylem sap. The mechanisms associated with pathogenicity and virulence involve toxins, antibiotics and ion sequestration systems, as well as bacterium-bacterium and bacterium-host interactions mediated by a range of proteins. Orthologues of some of these proteins have only been identified in animal and human pathogens; their presence in X. fastidiosa indicates that the molecular basis for bacterial pathogenicity is both conserved and independent of host. At least 83 genes are bacteriophage-derived and include virulence-associated genes from other bacteria, providing direct evidence of phage-mediated horizontal gene transfer.