Comparative genomics of the Erwinia and Enterobacter olive fly endosymbionts. Academic Article uri icon


  • The pestivorous tephritid olive fly has long been known as a frequent host of the obligately host-associated bacterial endosymbiont, Erwinia dacicola, as well as other facultative endosymbionts. The genomes of Erwinia dacicola and Enterobacter sp. OLF, isolated from a California olive fly, encode the ability to supplement amino acids and vitamins missing from the olive fruit on which the larvae feed. The Enterobacter sp. OLF genome encodes both uricase and ureases, and the Er. dacicola genome encodes an allantoate transport pathway, suggesting that bird feces or recycling the fly's waste products may be important sources of nitrogen. No homologs to known nitrogenases were identified in either bacterial genome, despite suggestions of their presence from experiments with antibiotic-treated flies. Comparisons between the olive fly endosymbionts and their free-living relatives revealed similar GC composition and genome size. The Er. dacicola genome has fewer genes for amino acid metabolism, cell motility, and carbohydrate transport and metabolism than free-living Erwinia spp. while having more genes for cell division, nucleotide metabolism and replication as well as mobile elements. A 6,696bp potential lateral gene transfer composed primarily of amino acid synthesis and transport genes was identified that is also observed in Pseudomonas savastanoii pv savastanoii, the causative agent of olive knot disease.

published proceedings

  • Sci Rep

altmetric score

  • 1.25

author list (cited authors)

  • Estes, A. M., Hearn, D. J., Agrawal, S., Pierson, E. A., & Dunning Hotopp, J. C.

citation count

  • 15

complete list of authors

  • Estes, Anne M||Hearn, David J||Agrawal, Sonia||Pierson, Elizabeth A||Dunning Hotopp, Julie C

publication date

  • January 2018