OA Microbiology http://www.oapublishinglondon.com/oa-microbiology OA Microbiology Small regulatory RNA molecules in bacteria. http://www.oapublishinglondon.com/article/1080 Small non coding RNA molecules are widespread in all kingdoms of life, where they serve to regulate and fine tune gene expression.  They can act in cis or trans, depending upon their structural relationship with genes whose expression they influence, and function by interacting with target messenger RNA molecules to inhibit or accelerate translation.  Thus, they can exert rapid control on cellular protein levels.  Within bacteria, many sRNAs have been described in Gram negative model organisms but developments in our understanding of their role in Gram positive organisms has been slower.  It is clear that sRNAs influence a wide range of cellular processes, including adaptation to environmental stresses, and virulence processes in pathogens.  Historically, identification of sRNAs has been challenging but recent developments in sequencing technology and computational analysis have led to over 45000 predicted sRNAs being catalogued in the last few years.  However many of these in silico predictions are yet to be validated and the complexity, in terms of sRNA interactions with gene networks, means we are really only beginning to understand how wide-ranging their effects can be within bacteria.  It is clear that sRNAs play a critical role in all aspects of bacterial physiology.  Within the genus Clostridium, the role of sRNAs in the pathogens C. perfringens, C. botulinum and C. difficile is much less well understood, despite hundreds of sRNAs having been predicted within these organisms.  These predictions represent a platform for novel discoveries regarding post transcriptional regulatory strategies mediated by these molecules in Clostridia. 07/20/2020 10:48:04 am Pathogenic microbial amyloids: their function and the host response. http://www.oapublishinglondon.com/article/1081 Functional microbial amyloids are ubiquitous in nature and some contribute to the pathogenesis of infectious diseases. Three pathogenic microbial amyloids are compared and their contribution to the disease process explained. The recent demonstration and visualization of fungal amyloid in human invasive candidiasis is discussed. Moreover, the binding of host serum amyloid P component to Candida functional amyloid in invasive human disease is presented in light of its possible role of masking fungi from the host defenses. 07/20/2020 10:48:04 am Tracking N-cycling genes in biochar-supplemented ecosystems: A perspective. http://www.oapublishinglondon.com/article/1474 Since biochar has the potential to mitigate climate change and enhance agricultural outputs, new research is exploring its dual role relative to greenhouse gas emissions from agronomic soils, with particular focus on nitrous oxide (N2O). It is well accepted that definitive investigations of sustainable contemporary biochar applications in different (bio)technologies must be underpinned by combined physico-chemical and microecophysiological analyses. Nevertheless, recent nitrogen cycle research has measured principally the occurrence and emission of different N species to then infer shifts in microbial activity in response to biochar augmentation, with a few emerging studies assessing its effects on the functional genes/communities. As a result, a wide scope for critical and exciting research exists. This must be informed by comprehensive multidisciplinary studies of the dynamics of functional N-cycle genes, enzymes, strains and communities across different ecosystems and environmental biotechnologies – agriculture, contaminant remediation, wastewater treatment, malodorant gas biofiltration and landfill. 07/20/2020 10:48:04 am