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  1. Nikel, Pablo Ivan (Ed.)
    ABSTRACT Cultured Myxococcota are predominantly aerobic soil inhabitants, characterized by their highly coordinated predation and cellular differentiation capacities. Little is currently known regarding yet-uncultured Myxococcota from anaerobic, nonsoil habitats. We analyzed genomes representing one novel order (o__JAFGXQ01) and one novel family (f__JAFGIB01) in the Myxococcota from an anoxic freshwater spring (Zodletone Spring) in Oklahoma, USA. Compared to their soil counterparts, anaerobic Myxococcota possess smaller genomes and a smaller number of genes encoding biosynthetic gene clusters (BGCs), peptidases, one- and two-component signal transduction systems, and transcriptional regulators. Detailed analysis of 13 distinct pathways/processes crucial to predation and cellular differentiation revealed severely curtailed machineries, with the notable absence of homologs for key transcription factors (e.g., FruA and MrpC), outer membrane exchange receptor (TraA), and the majority of sporulation-specific and A-motility-specific genes. Further, machine learning approaches based on a set of 634 genes informative of social lifestyle predicted a nonsocial behavior for Zodletone Myxococcota . Metabolically, Zodletone Myxococcota genomes lacked aerobic respiratory capacities but carried genes suggestive of fermentation, dissimilatory nitrite reduction, and dissimilatory sulfate-reduction (in f_JAFGIB01) for energy acquisition. We propose that predation and cellular differentiation represent a niche adaptation strategy that evolved circa 500 million years ago (Mya) in response tomore »the rise of soil as a distinct habitat on Earth. IMPORTANCE The phylum Myxococcota is a phylogenetically coherent bacterial lineage that exhibits unique social traits. Cultured Myxococcota are predominantly aerobic soil-dwelling microorganisms that are capable of predation and fruiting body formation. However, multiple yet-uncultured lineages within the Myxococcota have been encountered in a wide range of nonsoil, predominantly anaerobic habitats, and the metabolic capabilities, physiological preferences, and capacity of social behavior of such lineages remain unclear. Here, we analyzed genomes recovered from a metagenomic analysis of an anoxic freshwater spring in Oklahoma, USA, that represent novel, yet-uncultured, orders and families in the Myxococcota . The genomes appear to lack the characteristic hallmarks for social behavior encountered in Myxococcota genomes and displayed a significantly smaller genome size and a smaller number of genes encoding biosynthetic gene clusters, peptidases, signal transduction systems, and transcriptional regulators. Such perceived lack of social capacity was confirmed through detailed comparative genomic analysis of 13 pathways associated with Myxococcota social behavior, as well as the implementation of machine learning approaches to predict social behavior based on genome composition. Metabolically, these novel Myxococcota are predicted to be strict anaerobes, utilizing fermentation, nitrate reduction, and dissimilarity sulfate reduction for energy acquisition. Our results highlight the broad patterns of metabolic diversity within the yet-uncultured Myxococcota and suggest that the evolution of predation and fruiting body formation in the Myxococcota has occurred in response to soil formation as a distinct habitat on Earth.« less
  2. Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 1, 2024
  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2023
  4. Free, publicly-accessible full text available November 1, 2023
  5. Abstract Since the discovery of the Higgs boson in 2012, detailed studies of its properties have been ongoing. Besides its mass, its width—related to its lifetime—is an important parameter. One way to determine this quantity is to measure its off-shell production, where the Higgs boson mass is far away from its nominal value, and relating it to its on-shell production, where the mass is close to the nominal value. Here we report evidence for such off-shell contributions to the production cross-section of two Z bosons with data from the CMS experiment at the CERN Large Hadron Collider. We constrain the total rate of the off-shell Higgs boson contribution beyond the Z boson pair production threshold, relative to its standard model expectation, to the interval [0.0061, 2.0] at the 95% confidence level. The scenario with no off-shell contribution is excluded at a p -value of 0.0003 (3.6 standard deviations). We measure the width of the Higgs boson as $${{{\varGamma }}}_{{{{{{\rm{H}}}}}}}={3.2}_{-1.7}^{+2.4}\,{{{{{\rm{MeV}}}}}}$$ Γ H = 3.2 − 1.7 + 2.4 MeV , in agreement with the standard model expectation of 4.1 MeV. In addition, we set constraints on anomalous Higgs boson couplings to W and Z boson pairs.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available November 1, 2023
  6. Free, publicly-accessible full text available September 1, 2023
  7. A bstract A search is presented for a heavy W′ boson resonance decaying to a B or T vector-like quark and a t or a b quark, respectively. The analysis is performed using proton-proton collisions collected with the CMS detector at the LHC. The data correspond to an integrated luminosity of 138 fb − 1 at a center-of-mass energy of 13 TeV. Both decay channels result in a signature with a t quark, a Higgs or Z boson, and a b quark, each produced with a significant Lorentz boost. The all-hadronic decays of the Higgs or Z boson and of the t quark are selected using jet substructure techniques to reduce standard model backgrounds, resulting in a distinct three-jet W′ boson decay signature. No significant deviation in data with respect to the standard model background prediction is observed. Upper limits are set at 95% confidence level on the product of the W′ boson cross section and the final state branching fraction. A W′ boson with a mass below 3.1 TeV is excluded, given the benchmark model assumption of democratic branching fractions. In addition, limits are set based on generalizations of these assumptions. These are the most sensitive limits to datemore »for this final state.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available September 1, 2023
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  9. Free, publicly-accessible full text available August 1, 2023