Séverine Onillon

Centre Scientifique et Technique du Bâtiment, Lutetia Parisorum, Île-de-France, France

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Publications (2)12.76 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Legionella species are frequently detected in hot water systems, attached to the surface as a biofilm. In this work, the dynamics of Legionella spp. and diverse bacteria and eukarya associated together in the biofilm, coming from a pilot scale 1 system simulating a real hot water system, were investigated throughout 6 months after two successive heat shock treatments followed by three successive chemical treatments. Community structure was assessed by a fingerprint technique, single-strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP). In addition, the diversity and dynamics of Legionella and eukarya were investigated by small-subunit (SSU) ribosomal cloning and sequencing. Our results showed that pathogenic Legionella species remained after the heat shock and chemical treatments (Legionella pneumophila and Legionella anisa, respectively). The biofilm was not removed, and the bacterial community structure was transitorily affected by the treatments. Moreover, several amoebae had been detected in the biofilm before treatments (Thecamoebae sp., Vannella sp., and Hartmanella vermiformis) and after the first heat shock treatment, but only H. vermiformis remained. However, another protozoan affiliated with Alveolata, which is known as a host cell for Legionella, dominated the eukaryal species after the second heat shock and chemical treatment tests. Therefore, effective Legionella disinfection may be dependent on the elimination of these important microbial components. We suggest that eradicating Legionella in hot water networks requires better study of bacterial and eukaryal species associated with Legionella in biofilms.
    Applied and Environmental Microbiology 07/2012; 78(19):6850-8. · 3.95 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: REPs are highly repeated intergenic palindromic sequences often clustered into structures called BIMEs including two individual REPs separated by short linker of variable length. They play a variety of key roles in the cell. REPs also resemble the sub-terminal hairpins of the atypical IS200/605 family of insertion sequences which encode Y1 transposases (TnpA(IS200/IS605)). These belong to the HUH endonuclease family, carry a single catalytic tyrosine (Y) and promote single strand transposition. Recently, a new clade of Y1 transposases (TnpA(REP)) was found associated with REP/BIME in structures called REPtrons. It has been suggested that TnpA(REP) is responsible for REP/BIME proliferation over genomes. We analysed and compared REP distribution and REPtron structure in numerous available E. coli and Shigella strains. Phylogenetic analysis clearly indicated that tnpA(REP) was acquired early in the species radiation and was lost later in some strains. To understand REP/BIME behaviour within the host genome, we also studied E. coli K12 TnpA(REP) activity in vitro and demonstrated that it catalyses cleavage and recombination of BIMEs. While TnpA(REP) shared the same general organization and similar catalytic characteristics with TnpA(IS200/IS605) transposases, it exhibited distinct properties potentially important in the creation of BIME variability and in their amplification. TnpA(REP) may therefore be one of the first examples of transposase domestication in prokaryotes.
    Nucleic Acids Research 12/2011; 40(8):3596-609. · 8.81 Impact Factor