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Sample records for brucei gambiense reveals

  1. Domestic animals as potential reservoir hosts of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense in sleeping sickness foci in Cameroon

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    Njiokou F.

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available An explanation of the endemic nature and/or the resurgence of Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT in the historic foci in West and Central Africa may be the existence of an animal reservoir. In some HAT foci, pigs were found infected by Trypanosoma brucei gambiense but the implication of the other domestic animals was not quite evaluated. This study aims to determine the prevalence of T. b. gambiense in domestic animal species (goat, sheep, pig and dog commonly found in the four active HAT foci in Cameroon (Bipindi, Fontem, Campo and Doumé. Blood samples were collected from 307 pigs, 264 goats, 267 sheep and 37 dogs and used for parasitological (QBC, immunological (LiTat 1.3 CATT and molecular (PCR analyses. QBC detected trypanosomes in 3.88 % domestic animals while 22.7 % were sero-positive with LiTat 1.3 CATT tests. Of the 875 animals analysed, 174 (19.88 % harboured T. brucei s.l. DNA, found in each of the four types of animal and in the four localities. The infection rate significantly differed among the animal species (p < 0.0001 and localities (p < 0.0001. The PCR also revealed T. b. gambiense group 1 DNA in 27 (3.08 % domestic animals. The specific infection rates were as follows: sheep (6.74 %, goats (3.08 %, pigs (0.32 % and dogs (0 %. T. b. gambiense was found in 8 (3.92 % animals from Bipindi, 15 (4.83 % from Campo, 4 (2.59 % from Fontem-Center and none from Doumé. The infection rates significantly differed between the localities, and correlated with the intensity of HAT transmission in the foci.

  2. Trypanosoma brucei gambiense Type 1 populations from human patients are clonal and display geographical genetic differentiation.

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    Morrison, Liam J; Tait, Andy; McCormack, Gillian; Sweeney, Lindsay; Black, Alana; Truc, Philippe; Likeufack, Anne C L; Turner, C Michael; MacLeod, Annette

    2008-12-01

    We have rigorously tested the hypothesis that Trypanosoma brucei gambiense Type 1 is composed of genetically homogenous populations by examining the parasite population present in Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT) patients from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Cameroon (CAM). We amplified eight microsatellite markers by PCR directly from blood spots on FTA filters, thereby avoiding the significant parasite selection inherent in the traditional isolation techniques of rodent inoculation or in vitro culture. All microsatellite markers were polymorphic, although for four markers there was only polymorphism between the DRC and CAM populations, not within populations, suggesting very limited genetic exchange. Within the largest population from the DRC, Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium is not evident at any loci. This evidence suggests a clonal population. However, there was significant sub-structuring between the DRC and CAM samples (F(ST) = 0.32), indicating that Trypanosoma brucei gambiense Type 1 has genetically distinct clades. The data combine to indicate that genetic exchange plays a very limited role. The finding of distinct clades in different places suggests the possibility that samples from humans with clinical signs represent clonal expansions from an underlying population that requires identifying and characterising.

  3. Diversity and spation distribution of vectors and hosts of T. brucei gambiense in forest zones of Southern Cameroon: Epidemiological implications

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    Massussi, J.A.; Mbida Mbida, J.A.; Djieto-Lordon, C.; Njiokou, F.; Laveissière, C.; Ploeg, van der J.D.

    2010-01-01

    Host and vector distribution of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense was studied in relation to habitat types and seasons. Six (19.35%) of the 31 mammal species recorded in Bipindi were reservoir hosts. Cercopithecus nictitans was confined to the undisturbed forest and the low intensive shifting cultivation

  4. Molecular Evidence of a Trypanosoma brucei gambiense Sylvatic Cycle in the Human African Trypanosomiasis Foci of Equatorial Guinea

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    Carlos eCordon-Obras

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Gambiense trypanosomiasis is considered an anthroponotic disease. Consequently, control programs are generally aimed at stopping transmission of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense (T. b. gambiense by detecting and treating human cases. However, the persistence of numerous foci despite efforts to eliminate this disease questions this strategy as unique tool to pursue the eradication. The role of animals as a reservoir of T. b. gambiense is still controversial, but could partly explain maintenance of the infection at hypo-endemic levels. In the present study, we evaluated the presence of T. b. gambiense in wild animals in Equatorial Guinea. The infection rate ranged from 0.8% in the insular focus of Luba to more than 12% in Mbini, a focus with a constant trickle of human cases. The parasite was detected in a wide range of animal species including four species never described previously as putative reservoirs. Our study comes to reinforce the hypothesis that animals may play a role in the persistence of T. b. gambiense transmission, being particularly relevant in low transmission settings. Under these conditions the integration of sustained vector control and medical interventions should be considered to achieve the elimination of Gambiense trypanosomiasis.

  5. Trypanosoma brucei gambiense adaptation to different mammalian sera is associated with VSG expression site plasticity.

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    Carlos Cordon-Obras

    Full Text Available Trypanosoma brucei gambiense infection is widely considered an anthroponosis, although it has also been found in wild and domestic animals. Thus, fauna could act as reservoir, constraining the elimination of the parasite in hypo-endemic foci. To better understand the possible maintenance of T. b. gambiense in local fauna and investigate the molecular mechanisms underlying adaptation, we generated adapted cells lines (ACLs by in vitro culture of the parasites in different mammalian sera. Using specific antibodies against the Variant Surface Glycoproteins (VSGs we found that serum ACLs exhibited different VSG variants when maintained in pig, goat or human sera. Although newly detected VSGs were independent of the sera used, the consistent appearance of different VSGs suggested remodelling of the co-transcribed genes at the telomeric Expression Site (VSG-ES. Thus, Expression Site Associated Genes (ESAGs sequences were analysed to investigate possible polymorphism selection. ESAGs 6 and 7 genotypes, encoding the transferrin receptor (TfR, expressed in different ACLs were characterised. In addition, we quantified the ESAG6/7 mRNA levels and analysed transferrin (Tf uptake. Interestingly, the best growth occurred in pig and human serum ACLs, which consistently exhibited a predominant ESAG7 genotype and higher Tf uptake than those obtained in calf and goat sera. We also detected an apparent selection of specific ESAG3 genotypes in the pig and human serum ACLs, suggesting that other ESAGs could be involved in the host adaptation processes. Altogether, these results suggest a model whereby VSG-ES remodelling allows the parasite to express a specific set of ESAGs to provide selective advantages in different hosts. Finally, pig serum ACLs display phenotypic adaptation parameters closely related to human serum ACLs but distinct to parasites grown in calf and goat sera. These results suggest a better suitability of swine to maintain T. b. gambiense infection

  6. In vitro investigation of Brazilian Cerrado plant extract activity against Plasmodium falciparum, Trypanosoma cruzi and T. brucei gambiense.

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    Charneau, Sébastien; de Mesquita, Mariana Laundry; Bastos, Izabela Marques Dourado; Santana, Jaime Martins; de Paula, José Elias; Grellier, Philippe; Espindola, Laila Salmen

    2016-06-01

    The threatened Brazilian Cerrado biome is an important biodiversity hotspot but still few explored that constitutes a potential reservoir of molecules to treat infectious diseases. We selected eight Cerrado plant species for screening against the erythrocytic stages of Plasmodium falciparum, human intracellular stages of Trypanosoma cruzi and bloodstream forms of T. brucei gambiense, and for their cytotoxicity upon the rat L6-myoblast cell line. Bioassays were performed with 37 hexane, ethyl acetate and ethanol extracts prepared from different plant organs. Activities against parasites were observed for 24 extracts: 9 with anti-P. falciparum, 4 with anti-T. cruzi and 11 with anti-T. brucei gambiense activities. High anti-protozoal activity (IC50 values Cerrado conservation and sustainable development.

  7. Untreated human infections by Trypanosoma brucei gambiense are not 100% fatal.

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    Vincent Jamonneau

    Full Text Available The final outcome of infection by Trypanosoma brucei gambiense, the main agent of sleeping sickness, has always been considered as invariably fatal. While scarce and old reports have mentioned cases of self-cure in untreated patients, these studies suffered from the lack of accurate diagnostic tools available at that time. Here, using the most specific and sensitive tools available to date, we report on a long-term follow-up (15 years of a cohort of 50 human African trypanosomiasis (HAT patients from the Ivory Coast among whom 11 refused treatment after their initial diagnosis. In 10 out of 11 subjects who continued to refuse treatment despite repeated visits, parasite clearance was observed using both microscopy and polymerase chain reaction (PCR. Most of these subjects (7/10 also displayed decreasing serological responses, becoming progressively negative to trypanosome variable antigens (LiTat 1.3, 1.5 and 1.6. Hence, in addition to the "classic" lethal outcome of HAT, we show that alternative natural progressions of HAT may occur: progression to an apparently aparasitaemic and asymptomatic infection associated with strong long-lasting serological responses and progression to an apparently spontaneous resolution of infection (with negative results in parasitological tests and PCR associated with a progressive drop in antibody titres as observed in treated cases. While this study does not precisely estimate the frequency of the alternative courses for this infection, it is noteworthy that in the field national control programs encounter a significant proportion of subjects displaying positive serologic test results but negative results in parasitological testing. These findings demonstrate that a number of these subjects display such infection courses. From our point of view, recognising that trypanotolerance exists in humans, as is now widely accepted for animals, is a major step forward for future research in the field of HAT.

  8. Chimerization at the AQP2–AQP3 locus is the genetic basis of melarsoprol–pentamidine cross-resistance in clinical Trypanosoma brucei gambiense isolates

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    Fabrice E. Graf

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Aquaglyceroporin-2 is a known determinant of melarsoprol–pentamidine cross-resistance in Trypanosoma brucei brucei laboratory strains. Recently, chimerization at the AQP2–AQP3 tandem locus was described from melarsoprol–pentamidine cross-resistant Trypanosoma brucei gambiense isolates from sleeping sickness patients in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Here, we demonstrate that reintroduction of wild-type AQP2 into one of these isolates fully restores drug susceptibility while expression of the chimeric AQP2/3 gene in aqp2–aqp3 null T. b. brucei does not. This proves that AQP2–AQP3 chimerization is the cause of melarsoprol–pentamidine cross-resistance in the T. b. gambiense isolates.

  9. Chimerization at the AQP2-AQP3 locus is the genetic basis of melarsoprol-pentamidine cross-resistance in clinical Trypanosoma brucei gambiense isolates.

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    Graf, Fabrice E; Baker, Nicola; Munday, Jane C; de Koning, Harry P; Horn, David; Mäser, Pascal

    2015-08-01

    Aquaglyceroporin-2 is a known determinant of melarsoprol-pentamidine cross-resistance in Trypanosoma brucei brucei laboratory strains. Recently, chimerization at the AQP2-AQP3 tandem locus was described from melarsoprol-pentamidine cross-resistant Trypanosoma brucei gambiense isolates from sleeping sickness patients in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Here, we demonstrate that reintroduction of wild-type AQP2 into one of these isolates fully restores drug susceptibility while expression of the chimeric AQP2/3 gene in aqp2-aqp3 null T. b. brucei does not. This proves that AQP2-AQP3 chimerization is the cause of melarsoprol-pentamidine cross-resistance in the T. b. gambiense isolates.

  10. Loop Mediated Isothermal Amplification for Detection of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense in Urine and Saliva Samples in Nonhuman Primate Model

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    Maina Ngotho

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT is a vector-borne parasitic zoonotic disease. The disease caused by Trypanosoma brucei gambiense is the most prevalent in Africa. Early diagnosis is hampered by lack of sensitive diagnostic techniques. This study explored the potential of loop mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP and polymerase chain reaction (PCR in the detection of T. b. gambiense infection in a vervet monkey HAT model. Six vervet monkeys were experimentally infected with T. b. gambiense IL3253 and monitored for 180 days after infection. Parasitaemia was scored daily. Blood, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF, saliva, and urine samples were collected weekly. PCR and LAMP were performed on serum, CSF, saliva, and urine samples. The detection by LAMP was significantly higher than that of parasitological methods and PCR in all the samples. The performance of LAMP varied between the samples and was better in serum followed by saliva and then urine samples. In the saliva samples, LAMP had 100% detection between 21 and 77 dpi, whereas in urine the detection it was slightly lower, but there was over 80% detection between 28 and 91 dpi. However, LAMP could not detect trypanosomes in either saliva or urine after 140 and 126 dpi, respectively. The findings of this study emphasize the importance of LAMP in diagnosis of HAT using saliva and urine samples.

  11. Loop Mediated Isothermal Amplification for Detection of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense in Urine and Saliva Samples in Nonhuman Primate Model.

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    Ngotho, Maina; Kagira, John Maina; Gachie, Beatrice Muthoni; Karanja, Simon Muturi; Waema, Maxwell Wambua; Maranga, Dawn Nyawira; Maina, Naomi Wangari

    2015-01-01

    Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) is a vector-borne parasitic zoonotic disease. The disease caused by Trypanosoma brucei gambiense is the most prevalent in Africa. Early diagnosis is hampered by lack of sensitive diagnostic techniques. This study explored the potential of loop mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in the detection of T. b. gambiense infection in a vervet monkey HAT model. Six vervet monkeys were experimentally infected with T. b. gambiense IL3253 and monitored for 180 days after infection. Parasitaemia was scored daily. Blood, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), saliva, and urine samples were collected weekly. PCR and LAMP were performed on serum, CSF, saliva, and urine samples. The detection by LAMP was significantly higher than that of parasitological methods and PCR in all the samples. The performance of LAMP varied between the samples and was better in serum followed by saliva and then urine samples. In the saliva samples, LAMP had 100% detection between 21 and 77 dpi, whereas in urine the detection it was slightly lower, but there was over 80% detection between 28 and 91 dpi. However, LAMP could not detect trypanosomes in either saliva or urine after 140 and 126 dpi, respectively. The findings of this study emphasize the importance of LAMP in diagnosis of HAT using saliva and urine samples.

  12. Aquaporin 2 mutations in Trypanosoma brucei gambiense field isolates correlate with decreased susceptibility to pentamidine and melarsoprol.

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    Fabrice E Graf

    Full Text Available The predominant mechanism of drug resistance in African trypanosomes is decreased drug uptake due to loss-of-function mutations in the genes for the transporters that mediate drug import. The role of transporters as determinants of drug susceptibility is well documented from laboratory-selected Trypanosoma brucei mutants. But clinical isolates, especially of T. b. gambiense, are less amenable to experimental investigation since they do not readily grow in culture without prior adaptation. Here we analyze a selected panel of 16 T. brucei ssp. field isolates that (i have been adapted to axenic in vitro cultivation and (ii mostly stem from treatment-refractory cases. For each isolate, we quantify the sensitivity to melarsoprol, pentamidine, and diminazene, and sequence the genomic loci of the transporter genes TbAT1 and TbAQP2. The former encodes the well-characterized aminopurine permease P2 which transports several trypanocides including melarsoprol, pentamidine, and diminazene. We find that diminazene-resistant field isolates of T. b. brucei and T. b. rhodesiense carry the same set of point mutations in TbAT1 that was previously described from lab mutants. Aquaglyceroporin 2 has only recently been identified as a second transporter involved in melarsoprol/pentamidine cross-resistance. Here we describe two different kinds of TbAQP2 mutations found in T. b. gambiense field isolates: simple loss of TbAQP2, or loss of wild-type TbAQP2 allele combined with the formation of a novel type of TbAQP2/3 chimera. The identified mutant T. b. gambiense are 40- to 50-fold less sensitive to pentamidine and 3- to 5-times less sensitive to melarsoprol than the reference isolates. We thus demonstrate for the first time that rearrangements of the TbAQP2/TbAQP3 locus accompanied by TbAQP2 gene loss also occur in the field, and that the T. b. gambiense carrying such mutations correlate with a significantly reduced susceptibility to pentamidine and melarsoprol.

  13. Aquaporin 2 mutations in Trypanosoma brucei gambiense field isolates correlate with decreased susceptibility to pentamidine and melarsoprol.

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    Graf, Fabrice E; Ludin, Philipp; Wenzler, Tanja; Kaiser, Marcel; Brun, Reto; Pyana, Patient Pati; Büscher, Philippe; de Koning, Harry P; Horn, David; Mäser, Pascal

    2013-01-01

    The predominant mechanism of drug resistance in African trypanosomes is decreased drug uptake due to loss-of-function mutations in the genes for the transporters that mediate drug import. The role of transporters as determinants of drug susceptibility is well documented from laboratory-selected Trypanosoma brucei mutants. But clinical isolates, especially of T. b. gambiense, are less amenable to experimental investigation since they do not readily grow in culture without prior adaptation. Here we analyze a selected panel of 16 T. brucei ssp. field isolates that (i) have been adapted to axenic in vitro cultivation and (ii) mostly stem from treatment-refractory cases. For each isolate, we quantify the sensitivity to melarsoprol, pentamidine, and diminazene, and sequence the genomic loci of the transporter genes TbAT1 and TbAQP2. The former encodes the well-characterized aminopurine permease P2 which transports several trypanocides including melarsoprol, pentamidine, and diminazene. We find that diminazene-resistant field isolates of T. b. brucei and T. b. rhodesiense carry the same set of point mutations in TbAT1 that was previously described from lab mutants. Aquaglyceroporin 2 has only recently been identified as a second transporter involved in melarsoprol/pentamidine cross-resistance. Here we describe two different kinds of TbAQP2 mutations found in T. b. gambiense field isolates: simple loss of TbAQP2, or loss of wild-type TbAQP2 allele combined with the formation of a novel type of TbAQP2/3 chimera. The identified mutant T. b. gambiense are 40- to 50-fold less sensitive to pentamidine and 3- to 5-times less sensitive to melarsoprol than the reference isolates. We thus demonstrate for the first time that rearrangements of the TbAQP2/TbAQP3 locus accompanied by TbAQP2 gene loss also occur in the field, and that the T. b. gambiense carrying such mutations correlate with a significantly reduced susceptibility to pentamidine and melarsoprol.

  14. Murine Models for Trypanosoma brucei gambiense disease progression--from silent to chronic infections and early brain tropism.

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    Christiane Giroud

    Full Text Available Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT caused by Trypanosoma brucei gambiense remains highly prevalent in west and central Africa and is lethal if left untreated. The major problem is that the disease often evolves toward chronic or asymptomatic forms with low and fluctuating parasitaemia producing apparently aparasitaemic serological suspects who remain untreated because of the toxicity of the chemotherapy. Whether the different types of infections are due to host or parasite factors has been difficult to address, since T. b. gambiense isolated from patients is often not infectious in rodents thus limiting the variety of isolates.T. b. gambiense parasites were outgrown directly from the cerebrospinal fluid of infected patients by in vitro culture and analyzed for their molecular polymorphisms. Experimental murine infections showed that these isolates could be clustered into three groups with different characteristics regarding their in vivo infection properties, immune response and capacity for brain invasion. The first isolate induced a classical chronic infection with a fluctuating blood parasitaemia, an invasion of the central nervous system (CNS, a trypanosome specific-antibody response and death of the animals within 6-8 months. The second group induced a sub-chronic infection resulting in a single wave of parasitaemia after infection, followed by a low parasitaemia with no parasites detected by microscope observations of blood but detected by PCR, and the presence of a specific antibody response. The third isolate induced a silent infection characterised by the absence of microscopically detectable parasites throughout, but infection was detectable by PCR during the whole course of infection. Additionally, specific antibodies were barely detectable when mice were infected with a low number of this group of parasites. In both sub-chronic and chronic infections, most of the mice survived more than one year without major clinical symptoms

  15. A single amino acid substitution in the group 1 Trypanosoma brucei gambiense haptoglobin-hemoglobin receptor abolishes TLF-1 binding.

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    E DeJesus

    Full Text Available Critical to human innate immunity against African trypanosomes is a minor subclass of human high-density lipoproteins, termed Trypanosome Lytic Factor-1 (TLF-1. This primate-specific molecule binds to a haptoglobin-hemoglobin receptor (HpHbR on the surface of susceptible trypanosomes, initiating a lytic pathway. Group 1 Trypanosoma brucei gambiense causes human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT, escaping TLF-1 killing due to reduced uptake. Previously, we found that group 1 T. b. gambiense HpHbR (TbgHpHbR mRNA levels were greatly reduced and the gene contained substitutions within the open reading frame. Here we show that a single, highly conserved amino acid in the TbgHpHbR ablates high affinity TLF-1 binding and subsequent endocytosis, thus evading TLF-1 killing. In addition, we show that over-expression of TbgHpHbR failed to rescue TLF-1 susceptibility. These findings suggest that the single substitution present in the TbgHpHbR directly contributes to the reduced uptake and resistance to TLF-1 seen in these important human pathogens.

  16. The miRNA and mRNA Signatures of Peripheral Blood Cells in Humans Infected with Trypanosoma brucei gambiense.

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    Smiths Lueong

    Full Text Available Simple, reliable tools for diagnosis of human African Trypanosomiases could ease field surveillance and enhance patient care. In particular, current methods to distinguish patients with (stage II and without (stage I brain involvement require samples of cerebrospinal fluid. We describe here an exploratory study to find out whether miRNAs from peripheral blood leukocytes might be useful in diagnosis of human trypanosomiasis, or for determining the stage of the disease. Using microarrays, we measured miRNAs in samples from Trypanosoma brucei gambiense-infected patients (9 stage I, 10 stage II, 8 seronegative parasite-negative controls and 12 seropositive, but parasite-negative subjects. 8 miRNAs (out of 1205 tested showed significantly lower expression in patients than in seronegative, parasite-negative controls, and 1 showed increased expression. There were no clear differences in miRNAs between patients in different disease stages. The miRNA profiles could not distinguish seropositive, but parasitologically negative samples from controls and results within this group did not correlate with those from the trypanolysis test. Some of the regulated miRNAs, or their predicted mRNA targets, were previously reported changed during other infectious diseases or cancer. We conclude that the changes in miRNA profiles of peripheral blood lymphocytes in human African trypanosomiasis are related to immune activation or inflammation, are probably disease-non-specific, and cannot be used to determine the disease stage. The approach has little promise for diagnostics but might yield information about disease pathology.

  17. Melarsoprol sensitivity profile of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense isolates from cured and relapsed sleeping sickness patients from the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

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    Patient Pyana Pati

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Sleeping sickness caused by Trypanosoma brucei (T.b. gambiense constitutes a serious health problem in sub-Sahara Africa. In some foci, alarmingly high relapse rates were observed in patients treated with melarsoprol, which used to be the first line treatment for patients in the neurological disease stage. Particularly problematic was the situation in Mbuji-Mayi, East Kasai Province in the Democratic Republic of the Congo with a 57% relapse rate compared to a 5% relapse rate in Masi-Manimba, Bandundu Province. The present study aimed at investigating the mechanisms underlying the high relapse rate in Mbuji-Mayi using an extended collection of recently isolated T.b. gambiense strains from Mbuji-Mayi and from Masi-Manimba.Forty five T.b. gambiense strains were used. Forty one were isolated from patients that were cured or relapsed after melarsoprol treatment in Mbuji-Mayi. In vivo drug sensitivity tests provide evidence of reduced melarsoprol sensitivity in these strains. This reduced melarsoprol sensitivity was not attributable to mutations in TbAT1. However, in all these strains, irrespective of the patient treatment outcome, the two aquaglyceroporin (AQP 2 and 3 genes are replaced by chimeric AQP2/3 genes that may be associated with resistance to pentamidine and melarsoprol. The 4 T.b. gambiense strains isolated in Masi-Manimba contain both wild-type AQP2 and a different chimeric AQP2/3. These findings suggest that the reduced in vivo melarsoprol sensitivity of the Mbuji-Mayi strains and the high relapse rates in that sleeping sickness focus are caused by mutations in the AQP2/AQP3 locus and not by mutations in TbAT1.We conclude that mutations in the TbAQP2/3 locus of the local T.b. gambiense strains may explain the high melarsoprol relapse rates in the Mbuji-Mayi focus but other factors must also be involved in the treatment outcome of individual patients.

  18. Trypanosoma brucei gambiense group 1 is distinguished by a unique amino acid substitution in the HpHb receptor implicated in human serum resistance.

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    Rebecca E Symula

    Full Text Available Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense (Tbr and T. b. gambiense (Tbg, causative agents of Human African Trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness in Africa, have evolved alternative mechanisms of resisting the activity of trypanosome lytic factors (TLFs, components of innate immunity in human serum that protect against infection by other African trypanosomes. In Tbr, lytic activity is suppressed by the Tbr-specific serum-resistance associated (SRA protein. The mechanism in Tbg is less well understood but has been hypothesized to involve altered activity and expression of haptoglobin haemoglobin receptor (HpHbR. HpHbR has been shown to facilitate internalization of TLF-1 in T.b. brucei (Tbb, a member of the T. brucei species complex that is susceptible to human serum. By evaluating the genetic variability of HpHbR in a comprehensive geographical and taxonomic context, we show that a single substitution that replaces leucine with serine at position 210 is conserved in the most widespread form of Tbg (Tbg group 1 and not found in related taxa, which are either human serum susceptible (Tbb or known to resist lysis via an alternative mechanism (Tbr and Tbg group 2. We hypothesize that this single substitution contributes to reduced uptake of TLF and thus may play a key role in conferring serum resistance to Tbg group 1. In contrast, similarity in HpHbR sequence among isolates of Tbg group 2 and Tbb/Tbr provides further evidence that human serum resistance in Tbg group 2 is likely independent of HpHbR function.

  19. Wild chimpanzees are infected by Trypanosoma brucei

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    Milan Jirků

    2015-12-01

    Finally, we demonstrated that the mandrill serum was able to efficiently lyse T. b. brucei and T. b. rhodesiense, and to some extent T. b. gambiense, while the chimpanzee serum failed to lyse any of these subspecies.

  20. Mapping replication dynamics in Trypanosoma brucei reveals a link with telomere transcription and antigenic variation.

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    Devlin, Rebecca; Marques, Catarina A; Paape, Daniel; Prorocic, Marko; Zurita-Leal, Andrea C; Campbell, Samantha J; Lapsley, Craig; Dickens, Nicholas; McCulloch, Richard

    2016-05-26

    Survival of Trypanosoma brucei depends upon switches in its protective Variant Surface Glycoprotein (VSG) coat by antigenic variation. VSG switching occurs by frequent homologous recombination, which is thought to require locus-specific initiation. Here, we show that a RecQ helicase, RECQ2, acts to repair DNA breaks, including in the telomeric site of VSG expression. Despite this, RECQ2 loss does not impair antigenic variation, but causes increased VSG switching by recombination, arguing against models for VSG switch initiation through direct generation of a DNA double strand break (DSB). Indeed, we show DSBs inefficiently direct recombination in the VSG expression site. By mapping genome replication dynamics, we reveal that the transcribed VSG expression site is the only telomeric site that is early replicating - a differential timing only seen in mammal-infective parasites. Specific association between VSG transcription and replication timing reveals a model for antigenic variation based on replication-derived DNA fragility.

  1. Genome and phylogenetic analyses of Trypanosoma evansi reveal extensive similarity to T. brucei and multiple independent origins for dyskinetoplasty.

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    Carnes, Jason; Anupama, Atashi; Balmer, Oliver; Jackson, Andrew; Lewis, Michael; Brown, Rob; Cestari, Igor; Desquesnes, Marc; Gendrin, Claire; Hertz-Fowler, Christiane; Imamura, Hideo; Ivens, Alasdair; Kořený, Luděk; Lai, De-Hua; MacLeod, Annette; McDermott, Suzanne M; Merritt, Chris; Monnerat, Severine; Moon, Wonjong; Myler, Peter; Phan, Isabelle; Ramasamy, Gowthaman; Sivam, Dhileep; Lun, Zhao-Rong; Lukeš, Julius; Stuart, Ken; Schnaufer, Achim

    2015-01-01

    Two key biological features distinguish Trypanosoma evansi from the T. brucei group: independence from the tsetse fly as obligatory vector, and independence from the need for functional mitochondrial DNA (kinetoplast or kDNA). In an effort to better understand the molecular causes and consequences of these differences, we sequenced the genome of an akinetoplastic T. evansi strain from China and compared it to the T. b. brucei reference strain. The annotated T. evansi genome shows extensive similarity to the reference, with 94.9% of the predicted T. b. brucei coding sequences (CDS) having an ortholog in T. evansi, and 94.6% of the non-repetitive orthologs having a nucleotide identity of 95% or greater. Interestingly, several procyclin-associated genes (PAGs) were disrupted or not found in this T. evansi strain, suggesting a selective loss of function in the absence of the insect life-cycle stage. Surprisingly, orthologous sequences were found in T. evansi for all 978 nuclear CDS predicted to represent the mitochondrial proteome in T. brucei, although a small number of these may have lost functionality. Consistent with previous results, the F1FO-ATP synthase γ subunit was found to have an A281 deletion, which is involved in generation of a mitochondrial membrane potential in the absence of kDNA. Candidates for CDS that are absent from the reference genome were identified in supplementary de novo assemblies of T. evansi reads. Phylogenetic analyses show that the sequenced strain belongs to a dominant group of clonal T. evansi strains with worldwide distribution that also includes isolates classified as T. equiperdum. At least three other types of T. evansi or T. equiperdum have emerged independently. Overall, the elucidation of the T. evansi genome sequence reveals extensive similarity of T. brucei and supports the contention that T. evansi should be classified as a subspecies of T. brucei.

  2. Mitochondrial outer membrane proteome of Trypanosoma brucei reveals novel factors required to maintain mitochondrial morphology.

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    Niemann, Moritz; Wiese, Sebastian; Mani, Jan; Chanfon, Astrid; Jackson, Christopher; Meisinger, Chris; Warscheid, Bettina; Schneider, André

    2013-02-01

    Trypanosoma brucei is a unicellular parasite that causes devastating diseases in humans and animals. It diverged from most other eukaryotes very early in evolution and, as a consequence, has an unusual mitochondrial biology. Moreover, mitochondrial functions and morphology are highly regulated throughout the life cycle of the parasite. The outer mitochondrial membrane defines the boundary of the organelle. Its properties are therefore key for understanding how the cytosol and mitochondria communicate and how the organelle is integrated into the metabolism of the whole cell. We have purified the mitochondrial outer membrane of T. brucei and characterized its proteome using label-free quantitative mass spectrometry for protein abundance profiling in combination with statistical analysis. Our results show that the trypanosomal outer membrane proteome consists of 82 proteins, two-thirds of which have never been associated with mitochondria before. 40 proteins share homology with proteins of known functions. The function of 42 proteins, 33 of which are specific to trypanosomatids, remains unknown. 11 proteins are essential for the disease-causing bloodstream form of T. brucei and therefore may be exploited as novel drug targets. A comparison with the outer membrane proteome of yeast defines a set of 17 common proteins that are likely present in the mitochondrial outer membrane of all eukaryotes. Known factors involved in the regulation of mitochondrial morphology are virtually absent in T. brucei. Interestingly, RNAi-mediated ablation of three outer membrane proteins of unknown function resulted in a collapse of the network-like mitochondrion of procyclic cells and for the first time identified factors that control mitochondrial shape in T. brucei.

  3. Mutational analysis of Trypanosoma brucei RNA editing ligase reveals regions critical for interaction with KREPA2.

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    Vaibhav Mehta

    Full Text Available The Trypanosoma brucei parasite causes the vector-borne disease African sleeping sickness. Mitochondrial mRNAs of T. brucei undergo posttranscriptional RNA editing to make mature, functional mRNAs. The final step of this process is catalyzed by the essential ligase, T. brucei RNA Editing Ligase 1 (TbREL1 and the closely related T. brucei RNA Editing Ligase 2 (TbREL2. While other ligases such as T7 DNA ligase have both a catalytic and an oligonucleotide/oligosaccharide-binding (OB-fold domain, T. brucei RNA editing ligases contain only the catalytic domain. The OB-fold domain, which is required for interaction with the substrate RNA, is provided in trans by KREPA2 (for TbREL1 and KREPA1 (for TbREL2. KREPA2 enhancement of TbREL1 ligase activity is presumed to occur via an OB-fold-mediated increase in substrate specificity and catalysis. We characterized the interaction between TbREL1 and KREPA2 in vitro using full-length, truncated, and point-mutated ligases. As previously shown, our data indicate strong, specific stimulation of TbREL1 catalytic activity by KREPA2. We narrowed the region of contact to the final 59 C-terminal residues of TbREL1. Specifically, the TbREL1 C-terminal KWKE (441-444 sequence appear to coordinate the KREPA2-mediated enhancement of TbREL1 activities. N-terminal residues F206, T264 and Y275 are crucial for the overall activity of TbREL1, particularly for F206, a mutation of this residue also disrupts KREPA2 interaction. Thus, we have identified the critical TbREL1 regions and amino acids that mediate the KREPA2 interaction.

  4. Mechanism of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense resistance to human serum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Uzureau, Pierrick; Uzureau, Sophie; Lecordier, Laurence

    2013-01-01

    GP), which prevents APOL1 toxicity and induces stiffening of membranes upon interaction with lipids. Two additional features contribute to resistance to TLFs: reduction of sensitivity to APOL1 requiring cysteine protease activity, and TbHpHbR inactivation due to a L210S substitution. According...

  5. Functional and structural insights revealed by molecular dynamics simulations of an essential RNA editing ligase in Trypanosoma brucei.

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    Rommie E Amaro

    Full Text Available RNA editing ligase 1 (TbREL1 is required for the survival of both the insect and bloodstream forms of Trypanosoma brucei, the parasite responsible for the devastating tropical disease African sleeping sickness. The type of RNA editing that TbREL1 is involved in is unique to the trypanosomes, and no close human homolog is known to exist. In addition, the high-resolution crystal structure revealed several unique features of the active site, making this enzyme a promising target for structure-based drug design. In this work, two 20 ns atomistic molecular dynamics (MD simulations are employed to investigate the dynamics of TbREL1, both with and without the ATP substrate present. The flexibility of the active site, dynamics of conserved residues and crystallized water molecules, and the interactions between TbREL1 and the ATP substrate are investigated and discussed in the context of TbREL1's function. Differences in local and global motion upon ATP binding suggest that two peripheral loops, unique to the trypanosomes, may be involved in interdomain signaling events. Notably, a significant structural rearrangement of the enzyme's active site occurs during the apo simulations, opening an additional cavity adjacent to the ATP binding site that could be exploited in the development of effective inhibitors directed against this protozoan parasite. Finally, ensemble averaged electrostatics calculations over the MD simulations reveal a novel putative RNA binding site, a discovery that has previously eluded scientists. Ultimately, we use the insights gained through the MD simulations to make several predictions and recommendations, which we anticipate will help direct future experimental studies and structure-based drug discovery efforts against this vital enzyme.

  6. Comparative genomics reveals two novel RNAi factors in Trypanosoma brucei and provides insight into the core machinery.

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    Rebecca L Barnes

    Full Text Available The introduction ten years ago of RNA interference (RNAi as a tool for molecular exploration in Trypanosoma brucei has led to a surge in our understanding of the pathogenesis and biology of this human parasite. In particular, a genome-wide RNAi screen has recently been combined with next-generation Illumina sequencing to expose catalogues of genes associated with loss of fitness in distinct developmental stages. At present, this technology is restricted to RNAi-positive protozoan parasites, which excludes T. cruzi, Leishmania major, and Plasmodium falciparum. Therefore, elucidating the mechanism of RNAi and identifying the essential components of the pathway is fundamental for improving RNAi efficiency in T. brucei and for transferring the RNAi tool to RNAi-deficient pathogens. Here we used comparative genomics of RNAi-positive and -negative trypanosomatid protozoans to identify the repertoire of factors in T. brucei. In addition to the previously characterized Argonaute 1 (AGO1 protein and the cytoplasmic and nuclear Dicers, TbDCL1 and TbDCL2, respectively, we identified the RNA Interference Factors 4 and 5 (TbRIF4 and TbRIF5. TbRIF4 is a 3'-5' exonuclease of the DnaQ superfamily and plays a critical role in the conversion of duplex siRNAs to the single-stranded form, thus generating a TbAGO1-siRNA complex required for target-specific cleavage. TbRIF5 is essential for cytoplasmic RNAi and appears to act as a TbDCL1 cofactor. The availability of the core RNAi machinery in T. brucei provides a platform to gain mechanistic insights in this ancient eukaryote and to identify the minimal set of components required to reconstitute RNAi in RNAi-deficient parasites.

  7. Gambiense human african trypanosomiasis and immunological memory: effect on phenotypic lymphocyte profiles and humoral immunity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lejon, Veerle; Mumba Ngoyi, Dieudonné; Kestens, Luc; Boel, Luc; Barbé, Barbara; Kande Betu, Victor; van Griensven, Johan; Bottieau, Emmanuel; Muyembe Tamfum, Jean-Jacques; Jacobs, Jan; Büscher, Philippe

    2014-03-01

    In mice, experimental infection with Trypanosoma brucei causes decreased bone marrow B-cell development, abolished splenic B-cell maturation and loss of antibody mediated protection including vaccine induced memory responses. Nothing is known about this phenomenon in human African trypanosomiasis (HAT), but if occurring, it would imply the need of revaccination of HAT patients after therapy and abolish hope for a HAT vaccine. The effect of gambiense HAT on peripheral blood memory T- and B-cells and on innate and vaccine induced antibody levels was examined. The percentage of memory B- and T-cells was quantified in peripheral blood, prospectively collected in DR Congo from 117 Trypanosoma brucei gambiense infected HAT patients before and six months after treatment and 117 controls at the same time points. Antibodies against carbohydrate antigens on red blood cells and against measles were quantified. Before treatment, significantly higher percentages of memory B-cells, mainly T-independent memory B-cells, were observed in HAT patients compared to controls (CD20+CD27+IgM+, 13.0% versus 2.0%, p<0.001). The percentage of memory T-cells, mainly early effector/memory T-cells, was higher in HAT (CD3+CD45RO+CD27+, 19.4% versus 16.7%, p = 0.003). After treatment, the percentage of memory T-cells normalized, the percentage of memory B-cells did not. The median anti-red blood cell carbohydrate IgM level was one titer lower in HAT patients than in controls (p<0.004), and partially normalized after treatment. Anti-measles antibody concentrations were lower in HAT patients than in controls (medians of 1500 versus 2250 mIU/ml, p = 0.02), and remained so after treatment, but were above the cut-off level assumed to provide protection in 94.8% of HAT patients, before and after treatment (versus 98.3% of controls, p = 0.3). Although functionality of the B-cells was not verified, the results suggest that immunity was conserved in T.b. gambiense infected HAT patients and

  8. Protective effect of humus extract against Trypanosoma brucei infection in mice.

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    Kodama, Hiroshi; Denso; Okazaki, Fumi; Ishida, Saeko

    2008-11-01

    Humic substances are formed during the decomposition of organic matter in humus, and are found in many natural environments in which organic materials and microorganisms are present. Oral administration of humus extract to mice successfully induced effective protection against experimental challenge by the two subspecies, Trypanosoma brucei brucei and T. brucei gambiense. Mortality was most reduced among mice who received a 3% humus extract for 21 days in drinking water ad libitum. Spleen cells from humus-administered mice exhibited significant non-specific cytotoxic activity against L1210 mouse leukemia target cells. Also, spleen cells produced significantly higher amounts of Interferon-gamma when stimulated in vitro with Concanavalin A than cells from normal controls. These results clearly show that administration to mice of humus extract induced effective resistance against Trypanosoma infection. Enhancement of the innate immune system may be involved in host defense against trypanosomiasis.

  9. Structural and Functional Highlights of Vacuolar Soluble Protein 1 from Pathogen Trypanosoma brucei brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamwal, Abhishek; Round, Adam R; Bannwarth, Ludovic; Venien-Bryan, Catherine; Belrhali, Hassan; Yogavel, Manickam; Sharma, Amit

    2015-12-18

    Trypanosoma brucei (T. brucei) is responsible for the fatal human disease called African trypanosomiasis, or sleeping sickness. The causative parasite, Trypanosoma, encodes soluble versions of inorganic pyrophosphatases (PPase), also called vacuolar soluble proteins (VSPs), which are localized to its acidocalcisomes. The latter are acidic membrane-enclosed organelles rich in polyphosphate chains and divalent cations whose significance in these parasites remains unclear. We here report the crystal structure of T. brucei brucei acidocalcisomal PPases in a ternary complex with Mg(2+) and imidodiphosphate. The crystal structure reveals a novel structural architecture distinct from known class I PPases in its tetrameric oligomeric state in which a fused EF hand domain arranges around the catalytic PPase domain. This unprecedented assembly evident from TbbVSP1 crystal structure is further confirmed by SAXS and TEM data. SAXS data suggest structural flexibility in EF hand domains indicative of conformational plasticity within TbbVSP1.

  10. Structural and Functional Highlights of Vacuolar Soluble Protein 1 from Pathogen Trypanosoma brucei brucei*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamwal, Abhishek; Round, Adam R.; Bannwarth, Ludovic; Venien-Bryan, Catherine; Belrhali, Hassan; Yogavel, Manickam; Sharma, Amit

    2015-01-01

    Trypanosoma brucei (T. brucei) is responsible for the fatal human disease called African trypanosomiasis, or sleeping sickness. The causative parasite, Trypanosoma, encodes soluble versions of inorganic pyrophosphatases (PPase), also called vacuolar soluble proteins (VSPs), which are localized to its acidocalcisomes. The latter are acidic membrane-enclosed organelles rich in polyphosphate chains and divalent cations whose significance in these parasites remains unclear. We here report the crystal structure of T. brucei brucei acidocalcisomal PPases in a ternary complex with Mg2+ and imidodiphosphate. The crystal structure reveals a novel structural architecture distinct from known class I PPases in its tetrameric oligomeric state in which a fused EF hand domain arranges around the catalytic PPase domain. This unprecedented assembly evident from TbbVSP1 crystal structure is further confirmed by SAXS and TEM data. SAXS data suggest structural flexibility in EF hand domains indicative of conformational plasticity within TbbVSP1. PMID:26494625

  11. Trypanosoma brucei CYP51: Essentiality and Targeting Therapy in an Experimental Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dauchy, Frédéric-Antoine; Bonhivers, Mélanie; Landrein, Nicolas; Dacheux, Denis; Courtois, Pierrette; Lauruol, Florian; Daulouède, Sylvie

    2016-01-01

    Trypanosoma brucei gambiense is the main causative agent of Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT), also known as sleeping sickness. Because of limited alternatives and treatment toxicities, new therapeutic options are urgently needed for patients with HAT. Sterol 14alpha-demethylase (CYP51) is a potential drug target but its essentiality has not been determined in T. brucei. We used a tetracycline-inducible RNAi system to assess the essentiality of CYP51 in T. brucei bloodstream form (BSF) cells and we evaluated the effect of posaconazole, a well-tolerated triazole drug, within a panel of virulent strains in vitro and in a murine model. Expression of CYP51 in several T. brucei cell lines was demonstrated by western blot and its essentiality was demonstrated by RNA interference (CYP51RNAi) in vitro. Following reduction of TbCYP51 expression by RNAi, cell growth was reduced and eventually stopped compared to WT or non-induced cells, showing the requirement of CYP51 in T. brucei. These phenotypes were rescued by addition of ergosterol. Additionally, CYP51RNAi induction caused morphological defects with multiflagellated cells (ptrypanosomiasis. PMID:27855164

  12. A luciferase based viability assay for ATP detection in 384-well format for high throughput whole cell screening of Trypanosoma brucei brucei bloodstream form strain 427

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    Avery Vicky M

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT is caused by two trypanosome species, Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense and Trypanosoma brucei gambiense. Current drugs available for the treatment of HAT have significant issues related to toxicity, administration regimes with limited effectiveness across species and disease stages, thus there is a considerable need to find alternative drugs. A well recognised approach to identify new drug candidates is high throughput screening (HTS of large compound library collections. Results We describe here the development of a luciferase based viability assay in 384-well plate format suitable for HTS of T.b.brucei. The parameters that were explored to determine the final HTS assay conditions are described in detail and include DMSO tolerability, Z', diluents and cell inoculum density. Reference compound activities were determined for diminazene, staurosporine and pentamidine and compared to previously published IC50 data obtained. The assay has a comparable sensitivity to reference drugs and is more cost effective than the 96-well format currently reported for T.b.brucei. Conclusion Due to the reproducibility and sensitivity of this assay it is recommended for potential HTS application. As it is commercially available this assay can also be utilised in many laboratories for both large and small scale screening.

  13. A proteomics approach reveals molecular manipulators of distinct cellular processes in the salivary glands of Glossina m. morsitans in response to Trypanosoma b. brucei infections

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kariithi, Henry M.; Boeren, Sjef; Murungi, Edwin K.; Vlak, Just M.; Abd-Alla, Adly M.M.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Glossina m. morsitans is the primary vector of the Trypanosoma brucei group, one of the causative agents of African trypanosomoses. The parasites undergo metacyclogenesis, i.e. transformation into the mammalian-infective metacyclic trypomastigote (MT) parasites, in the salivary glands

  14. Parasite-based screening and proteome profiling reveal orlistat, an FDA-approved drug, as a potential anti Trypanosoma brucei agent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Peng-Yu; Wang, Min; Liu, Kai; Ngai, Mun Hong; Sheriff, Omar; Lear, Martin J; Sze, Siu Kwan; He, Cynthia Y; Yao, Shao Q

    2012-07-02

    Trypanosoma brucei is a parasite that causes African sleeping sickness in humans and nagana in livestock and is transmitted by the tsetse fly. There is an urgent need for the development of new drugs against African trypanosomiasis due to the lack of vaccines and effective drugs. Orlistat (also called tetrahydrolipstatin or THL) is an FDA-approved antiobesity drug targeting primarily the pancreatic and gastric lipases within the gastrointestinal tract. It shows potential activities against tumors, mycobacteria, and parasites. Herein, we report the synthesis and evaluation of an expanded set of orlistat-like compounds, some of which showed highly potent trypanocidal activities in both the bloodstream form (BSF) and the procyclic form (PCF) of T. brucei. Subsequent in situ parasite-based proteome profiling was carried out to elucidate potential cellular targets of the drug in both forms. Some newly identified targets were further validated by the labeling of recombinantly expressed enzymes in Escherichia coli lysates. Bioimaging experiments with a selected compound were carried out to study the cellular uptake of the drug in T. brucei. Results indicated that orlistat is much more efficiently taken up by the BSF than the PCF of T. brucei and has clear effects on the morphology of mitochondria, glycosomes, and the endoplasmic reticulum in both BSF and PCF cells. These results support specific effects of orlistat on these organelles and correlate well with our in situ proteome profiling. Given the economic challenges of de novo drug development for neglected diseases, we hope that our findings will stimulate further research towards the conversion of orlistat-like compounds into new trypanocidal drugs.

  15. Taxonomy Icon Data: Trypanosoma brucei [Taxonomy Icon

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available Trypanosoma brucei Trypanosoma brucei Trypanosoma_brucei_L.png Trypanosoma_brucei_NL.png Trypanosoma_bruce...i_S.png Trypanosoma_brucei_NS.png http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Trypanosoma+bruce...i&t=L http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Trypanosoma+brucei&t=NL http://bioscie...ncedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Trypanosoma+brucei&t=S http://biosciencedbc.jp.../taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Trypanosoma+brucei&t=NS http://togodb.biosciencedbc.jp/togodb/view/taxonomy_icon_comment_en?species_id=121 ...

  16. Identifying transmission cycles at the human-animal interface: the role of animal reservoirs in maintaining gambiense human african trypanosomiasis.

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    Sebastian Funk

    Full Text Available Many infections can be transmitted between animals and humans. The epidemiological roles of different species can vary from important reservoirs to dead-end hosts. Here, we present a method to identify transmission cycles in different combinations of species from field data. We used this method to synthesise epidemiological and ecological data from Bipindi, Cameroon, a historical focus of gambiense Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT, sleeping sickness, a disease that has often been considered to be maintained mainly by humans. We estimated the basic reproduction number [Formula: see text] of gambiense HAT in Bipindi and evaluated the potential for transmission in the absence of human cases. We found that under the assumption of random mixing between vectors and hosts, gambiense HAT could not be maintained in this focus without the contribution of animals. This result remains robust under extensive sensitivity analysis. When using the distributions of species among habitats to estimate the amount of mixing between those species, we found indications for an independent transmission cycle in wild animals. Stochastic simulation of the system confirmed that unless vectors moved between species very rarely, reintroduction would usually occur shortly after elimination of the infection from human populations. This suggests that elimination strategies may have to be reconsidered as targeting human cases alone would be insufficient for control, and reintroduction from animal reservoirs would remain a threat. Our approach is broadly applicable and could reveal animal reservoirs critical to the control of other infectious diseases.

  17. Accuracy of individual rapid tests for serodiagnosis of gambiense sleeping sickness in West Africa.

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    Vincent Jamonneau

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Individual rapid tests for serodiagnosis (RDT of human African trypanosomiasis (HAT are particularly suited for passive screening and surveillance. However, so far, no large scale evaluation of RDTs has been performed for diagnosis of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense HAT in West Africa. The objective of this study was to assess the diagnostic accuracy of 2 commercial HAT-RDTs on stored plasma samples from West Africa.SD Bioline HAT and HAT Sero-K-Set were performed on 722 plasma samples originating from Guinea and Côte d'Ivoire, including 231 parasitologically confirmed HAT patients, 257 healthy controls, and 234 unconfirmed individuals whose blood tested antibody positive in the card agglutination test but negative by parasitological tests. Immune trypanolysis was performed as a reference test for trypanosome specific antibody presence. Sensitivities in HAT patients were respectively 99.6% for SD Bioline HAT, and 99.1% for HAT Sero-K-Set, specificities in healthy controls were respectively 87.9% and 88.3%. Considering combined positivity in both RDTs, increased the specificity significantly (p ≤ 0.0003 to 93.4%, while 98.7% sensitivity was maintained. Specificities in controls were 98.7-99.6% for the combination of one or two RDTs with trypanolysis, maintaining a sensitivity of at least 98.1%.The observed specificity of the single RDTs was relatively low. Serial application of SD Bioline HAT and HAT Sero-K-Set might offer superior specificity compared to a single RDT, maintaining high sensitivity. The combination of one or two RDTs with trypanolysis seems promising for HAT surveillance.

  18. Treatment options for second-stage gambiense human African trypanosomiasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eperon, Gilles; Balasegaram, Manica; Potet, Julien; Mowbray, Charles; Valverde, Olaf; Chappuis, François

    2014-11-01

    Treatment of second-stage gambiense human African trypanosomiasis relied on toxic arsenic-based derivatives for over 50 years. The availability and subsequent use of eflornithine, initially in monotherapy and more recently in combination with nifurtimox (NECT), has drastically improved the prognosis of treated patients. However, NECT logistic and nursing requirements remain obstacles to its deployment and use in peripheral health structures in rural sub-Saharan Africa. Two oral compounds, fexinidazole and SCYX-7158, are currently in clinical development. The main scope of this article is to discuss the potential impact of new oral therapies to improve diagnosis-treatment algorithms and patients' access to treatment, and to contribute to reach the objectives of the recently launched gambiense human African trypanosomiasis elimination program.

  19. Trypanosoma brucei gambiense Spliced Leader RNA Is a More Specific Marker for Cure of Human African Trypanosomiasis Than T. b. gambiense DNA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ilboudo, Hamidou; Camara, Oumou; Ravel, Sophie; Bucheton, Bruno; Lejon, Veerle; Camara, Mamadou; Kaboré, Jacques; Jamonneau, Vincent; Deborggraeve, Stijn

    2015-12-15

    To assess the efficacy of treatment for human African trypanosomiasis, accurate tests that can discriminate relapse from cure are needed. We report the first data that the spliced leader (SL) RNA is a more specific marker for cure of human African trypanosomiasis than parasite DNA. In blood samples obtained from 61 patients in whom human African trypanosomiasis was cured, SL RNA detection had specificities of 98.4%-100%, while DNA detection had a specificity of only 77%. Data from our proof-of-concept study show that SL RNA detection has high potential as a test of cure.

  20. A comparative proteomic analysis reveals a new bi-lobe protein required for bi-lobe duplication and cell division in Trypanosoma brucei.

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    Qing Zhou

    Full Text Available A Golgi-associated bi-lobed structure was previously found to be important for Golgi duplication and cell division in Trypanosoma brucei. To further understand its functions, comparative proteomics was performed on extracted flagellar complexes (including the flagellum and flagellum-associated structures such as the basal bodies and the bi-lobe and purified flagella to identify new bi-lobe proteins. A leucine-rich repeats containing protein, TbLRRP1, was characterized as a new bi-lobe component. The anterior part of the TbLRRP1-labeled bi-lobe is adjacent to the single Golgi apparatus, and the posterior side is tightly associated with the flagellar pocket collar marked by TbBILBO1. Inducible depletion of TbLRRP1 by RNA interference inhibited duplication of the bi-lobe as well as the adjacent Golgi apparatus and flagellar pocket collar. Formation of a new flagellum attachment zone and subsequent cell division were also inhibited, suggesting a central role of bi-lobe in Golgi, flagellar pocket collar and flagellum attachment zone biogenesis.

  1. `In crystallo' substrate binding triggers major domain movements and reveals magnesium as a co-activator of Trypanosoma brucei pyruvate kinase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhong, Wenhe; Morgan, Hugh P; McNae, Iain W; Michels, Paul A M; Fothergill-Gilmore, Linda A; Walkinshaw, Malcolm D

    2013-09-01

    The active site of pyruvate kinase (PYK) is located between the AC core of the enzyme and a mobile lid corresponding to domain B. Many PYK structures have already been determined, but the first `effector-only' structure and the first with PEP (the true natural substrate) are now reported for the enzyme from Trypanosoma brucei. PEP soaked into crystals of the enzyme with bound allosteric activator fructose 2,6-bisphosphate (F26BP) and Mg(2+) triggers a substantial 23° rotation of the B domain `in crystallo', resulting in a partially closed active site. The interplay of side chains with Mg(2+) and PEP may explain the mechanism of the domain movement. Furthermore, it is apparent that when F26BP is present but PEP is absent Mg(2+) occupies a position that is distinct from the two canonical Mg(2+)-binding sites at the active site. This third site is adjacent to the active site and involves the same amino-acid side chains as in canonical site 1 but in altered orientations. Site 3 acts to sequester Mg(2+) in a `priming' position such that the enzyme is maintained in its R-state conformation. In this way, Mg(2+) cooperates with F26BP to ensure that the enzyme is in a conformation that has a high affinity for the substrate.

  2. Syndromic algorithms for detection of gambiense human African trypanosomiasis in South Sudan.

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    Jennifer J Palmer

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Active screening by mobile teams is considered the best method for detecting human African trypanosomiasis (HAT caused by Trypanosoma brucei gambiense but the current funding context in many post-conflict countries limits this approach. As an alternative, non-specialist health care workers (HCWs in peripheral health facilities could be trained to identify potential cases who need testing based on their symptoms. We explored the predictive value of syndromic referral algorithms to identify symptomatic cases of HAT among a treatment-seeking population in Nimule, South Sudan. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Symptom data from 462 patients (27 cases presenting for a HAT test via passive screening over a 7 month period were collected to construct and evaluate over 14,000 four item syndromic algorithms considered simple enough to be used by peripheral HCWs. For comparison, algorithms developed in other settings were also tested on our data, and a panel of expert HAT clinicians were asked to make referral decisions based on the symptom dataset. The best performing algorithms consisted of three core symptoms (sleep problems, neurological problems and weight loss, with or without a history of oedema, cervical adenopathy or proximity to livestock. They had a sensitivity of 88.9-92.6%, a negative predictive value of up to 98.8% and a positive predictive value in this context of 8.4-8.7%. In terms of sensitivity, these out-performed more complex algorithms identified in other studies, as well as the expert panel. The best-performing algorithm is predicted to identify about 9/10 treatment-seeking HAT cases, though only 1/10 patients referred would test positive. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: In the absence of regular active screening, improving referrals of HAT patients through other means is essential. Systematic use of syndromic algorithms by peripheral HCWs has the potential to increase case detection and would increase their participation in HAT

  3. An Overview of Trypanosoma brucei Infections: An Intense Host–Parasite Interaction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ponte-Sucre, Alicia

    2016-01-01

    Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense and T. brucei gambiense, the causative agents of Human African Trypanosomiasis, are transmitted by tsetse flies. Within the vector, the parasite undergoes through transformations that prepares it to infect the human host. Sequentially these developmental stages are the replicative procyclic (in which the parasite surface is covered by procyclins) and trypo-epimastigote forms, as well as the non-replicative, infective, metacyclic form that develops in the vector salivary glands. As a pre-adaptation to their life in humans, metacyclic parasites begin to express and be densely covered by the Variant Surface Glycoprotein (VSG). Once the metacyclic form invades the human host the parasite develops into the bloodstream form. Herein the VSG triggers a humoral immune response. To avoid this humoral response, and essential for survival while in the bloodstream, the parasite changes its cover periodically and sheds into the surroundings the expressed VSG, thus evading the consequences of the immune system activation. Additionally, tools comparable to quorum sensing are used by the parasite for the successful parasite transmission from human to insect. On the other hand, the human host promotes clearance of the parasite triggering innate and adaptive immune responses and stimulating cytokine and chemokine secretion. All in all, the host–parasite interaction is extremely active and leads to responses that need multiple control sites to develop appropriately. PMID:28082973

  4. Loop-Mediated Isothermal Amplification Test for Trypanosoma gambiense Group 1 with Stem Primers: A Molecular Xenomonitoring Test for Sleeping Sickness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mburugu, Gitonga N.

    2017-01-01

    The World Health Organization has targeted Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT) for elimination by 2020 with zero incidence by 2030. To achieve and sustain this goal, accurate and easy-to-deploy diagnostic tests for Gambian trypanosomiasis which accounts for over 98% of reported cases will play a crucial role. Most needed will be tools for surveillance of pathogen in vectors (xenomonitoring) since population screening tests are readily available. The development of new tests is expensive and takes a long time while incremental improvement of existing technologies that have potential for xenomonitoring may offer a shorter pathway to tools for HAT surveillance. We have investigated the effect of including a second set of reaction accelerating primers (stem primers) to the standard T. brucei gambiense LAMP test format. The new test format was analyzed with and without outer primers. Amplification was carried out using Rotorgene 6000 and the portable ESE Quant amplification unit capable of real-time data output. The stem LAMP formats indicated shorter time to results (~8 min), were 10–100-fold more sensitive, and indicated higher diagnostic sensitivity and accuracy compared to the standard LAMP test. It was possible to confirm the predicted product using ESE melt curves demonstrating the potential of combining LAMP and real-time technologies as possible tool for HAT molecular xenomonitoring.

  5. Loop-Mediated Isothermal Amplification Test for Trypanosoma gambiense Group 1 with Stem Primers: A Molecular Xenomonitoring Test for Sleeping Sickness

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    Zablon K. Njiru

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The World Health Organization has targeted Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT for elimination by 2020 with zero incidence by 2030. To achieve and sustain this goal, accurate and easy-to-deploy diagnostic tests for Gambian trypanosomiasis which accounts for over 98% of reported cases will play a crucial role. Most needed will be tools for surveillance of pathogen in vectors (xenomonitoring since population screening tests are readily available. The development of new tests is expensive and takes a long time while incremental improvement of existing technologies that have potential for xenomonitoring may offer a shorter pathway to tools for HAT surveillance. We have investigated the effect of including a second set of reaction accelerating primers (stem primers to the standard T. brucei gambiense LAMP test format. The new test format was analyzed with and without outer primers. Amplification was carried out using Rotorgene 6000 and the portable ESE Quant amplification unit capable of real-time data output. The stem LAMP formats indicated shorter time to results (~8 min, were 10–100-fold more sensitive, and indicated higher diagnostic sensitivity and accuracy compared to the standard LAMP test. It was possible to confirm the predicted product using ESE melt curves demonstrating the potential of combining LAMP and real-time technologies as possible tool for HAT molecular xenomonitoring.

  6. The natural progression of Gambiense sleeping sickness: what is the evidence?

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    Francesco Checchi

    Full Text Available Gambiense human African trypanosomiasis (HAT, sleeping sickness is widely assumed to be 100% pathogenic and fatal. However, reports to the contrary exist, and human trypano-tolerance has been postulated. Furthermore, there is uncertainty about the actual duration of both stage 1 and stage 2 infection, particularly with respect to how long a patient remains infectious. Understanding such basic parameters of HAT infection is essential for optimising control strategies based on case detection. We considered the potential existence and relevance of human trypano-tolerance, and explored the duration of infectiousness, through a review of published evidence on the natural progression of gambiense HAT in the absence of treatment, and biological considerations. Published reports indicate that most gambiense HAT cases are fatal if untreated. Self-resolving and asymptomatic chronic infections probably constitute a minority if they do indeed exist. Chronic carriage, however, deserves further study, as it could seed renewed epidemics after control programmes cease.

  7. A tsetse and tabanid fly survey of African great apes habitats reveals the presence of a novel trypanosome lineage but the absence of Trypanosoma brucei.

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    Votýpka, Jan; Rádrová, Jana; Skalický, Tomáš; Jirků, Milan; Jirsová, Dagmar; Mihalca, Andrei D; D'Amico, Gianluca; Petrželková, Klára J; Modrý, David; Lukeš, Julius

    2015-10-01

    Tsetse and tabanid flies transmit several Trypanosoma species, some of which are human and livestock pathogens of major medical and socioeconomic impact in Africa. Recent advances in molecular techniques and phylogenetic analyses have revealed a growing diversity of previously unidentified tsetse-transmitted trypanosomes potentially pathogenic to livestock and/or other domestic animals as well as wildlife, including African great apes. To map the distribution, prevalence and co-occurrence of known and novel trypanosome species, we analyzed tsetse and tabanid flies collected in the primary forested part of the Dzanga-Sangha Protected Areas, Central African Republic, which hosts a broad spectrum of wildlife including primates and is virtually devoid of domestic animals. Altogether, 564 tsetse flies and 81 tabanid flies were individually screened for the presence of trypanosomes using 18S rRNA-specific nested PCR. Herein, we demonstrate that wildlife animals are parasitized by a surprisingly wide range of trypanosome species that in some cases may circulate via these insect vectors. While one-third of the examined tsetse flies harbored trypanosomes either from the Trypanosoma theileri, Trypanosoma congolense or Trypanosoma simiae complex, or one of the three new members of the genus Trypanosoma (strains 'Bai', 'Ngbanda' and 'Didon'), more than half of the tabanid flies exclusively carried T. theileri. To establish the putative vertebrate hosts of the novel trypanosome species, we further analyzed the provenance of blood meals of tsetse flies. DNA individually isolated from 1033 specimens of Glossina spp. and subjected to high-throughput library-based screening proved that most of the examined tsetse flies engorged on wild ruminants (buffalo, sitatunga, bongo), humans and suids. Moreover, they also fed (albeit more rarely) on other vertebrates, thus providing indirect but convincing evidence that trypanosomes can be transmitted via these vectors among a wide range of

  8. Evaluation of In Vitro Activity of Essential Oils against Trypanosoma brucei brucei and Trypanosoma evansi

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    Nathan Habila

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Essential oils (EOs from Cymbopogon citratus (CC, Eucalyptus citriodora (EC, Eucalyptus camaldulensis (ED, and Citrus sinensis (CS were obtained by hydrodistillation process. The EOs were evaluated in vitro for activity against Trypanosoma brucei brucei (Tbb and Trypanosoma evansi (T. evansi. The EOs were found to possess antitrypanosomal activity in vitro in a dose-dependent pattern in a short period of time. The drop in number of parasite over time was achieved doses of 0.4 g/ml, 0.2 g/mL, and 0.1 g/mL for all the EOs. The concentration of 0.4 g/mL CC was more potent at 3 minutes and 2 minutes for Tbb and T. evansi, respectively. The GC-MS analysis of the EOs revealed presence of Cyclobutane (96.09% in CS, 6-octenal (77.11% in EC, Eucalyptol (75% in ED, and Citral (38.32% in CC among several other organic compounds. The results are discussed in relation to trypanosome chemotherapy.

  9. The journey towards elimination of gambiense human African trypanosomiasis: not far, nor easy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franco, J R; Simarro, P P; Diarra, A; Ruiz-Postigo, J A; Jannin, J G

    2014-05-01

    Considering the epidemic situation of gambiense human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) at the end of the twentieth century, the World Health Organization (WHO) and partners strengthened disease control and surveillance. Over the last 15 years, the activities implemented through the National Control Programmes have brought gambiense HAT under control and now its elimination is deemed as an achievable goal. In 2012, WHO targeted gambiense HAT for elimination as a public health problem by 2020. The final goal will be the sustainable disease elimination by 2030, defined as the interruption of the transmission of gambiense HAT. The elimination is considered feasible, because of the epidemiological vulnerability of the disease, the current state of control, the availability of strategies and tools and international commitment and political will. Integration of activities in the health system is needed to ensure the sustainability of the elimination. The development of user-friendly diagnostic and treatment tools will facilitate the integration process. Adequate funding is needed to implement activities, but also to support research that will make the elimination sustainable. A long-term commitment by donors is needed and ownership of the process by endemic countries is critical.

  10. Localization of serum resistance-associated protein in Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense and transgenic Trypanosoma brucei brucei.

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    Bart, Jean-Mathieu; Cordon-Obras, Carlos; Vidal, Isabel; Reed, Jennifer; Perez-Pastrana, Esperanza; Cuevas, Laureano; Field, Mark C; Carrington, Mark; Navarro, Miguel

    2015-10-01

    African trypanosomes infect a broad range of mammals, but humans and some higher primates are protected by serum trypanosome lytic factors that contain apolipoprotein L1 (ApoL1). In the human-infective subspecies of Trypanosoma brucei, Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense, a gene product derived from the variant surface glycoprotein gene family member, serum resistance-associated protein (SRA protein), protects against ApoL1-mediated lysis. Protection against trypanosome lytic factor requires the direct interaction between SRA protein and ApoL1 within the endocytic apparatus of the trypanosome, but some uncertainty remains as to the precise mechanism and location of this interaction. In order to provide more insight into the mechanism of SRA-mediated resistance to trypanosome lytic factor, we assessed the localization of SRA in T. b. rhodesiense EATRO3 using a novel monoclonal antibody raised against SRA together with a set of well-characterized endosomal markers. By three-dimensional deconvolved immunofluorescence single-cell analysis, combined with double-labelling immunoelectron microscopy, we found that ≈ 50% of SRA protein localized to the lysosome, with the remaining population being distributed through the endocytic pathway, but apparently absent from the flagellar pocket membrane. These data suggest that the SRA/trypanolytic factor interaction is intracellular, with the concentration within the endosomes potentially crucial for ensuring a high efficiency.

  11. Anti-trypanosomal effect of Peristrophe bicalyculata extract on Trypanosoma brucei brucei-infected rats

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    Abdulazeez Mansurah Abimbola; Ibrahim Abdulrazak Baba; Edibo Zakari Yenusa; Sidali Joseph Omanibe; Idris Habeeb Oladimeji

    2013-01-01

    Objective: To investigate the in vitro and in vivo effect of whole plant extracts of Peristrophe bicalyculata on Trypanosoma brucei brucei-infected rats. Methods: The experiment was divided into two phases: In the first phase, the anti-trypanosomal activity of the hot water, cold water, methanol and butanol extracts of the whole plant were determined by incubating with Trypanosoma brucei brucei. The cold water extract was partially-purified and the anti-trypanosomal activity of the fractions determined. In the second phase, Trypanosoma brucei brucei-infected rats were treated with fraction 2c for nine days. Packed cell volume (PCV), high density lipoprotein (HDL), low density lipoprotein (LDL), total cholesterol (TC), triacylglycerol (TAG), aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferases (ALT), alkaline phosphatase (ALP), total and direct bilirubin levels were determined at the end of the experiment. Results:Cold water extract immobilized 90%of the parasites after 60 min of incubation, and fraction 2c completely immobilized the parasites after 35 min. It significantly increased PCV in Trypanosoma brucei brucei-infected rats. Decreased TC, TAG, HDL and LDL levels of infected rats increased significantly when rats were treated with the fraction, while elevated levels of total bilirubin and ALT also decreased. The difference in urea, direct bilirubin and ALP was not significant when infected rats were compared to rats in other groups. Conclusions:The ability of the plant to ameliorate the infection-induced biochemical changes calls for detailed investigation of the potentials of the plant for antitrypanosomiasis drug delivery.

  12. Trypanosoma brucei brucei: effects of ferrous iron and heme on ecto-nucleoside triphosphate diphosphohydrolase activity.

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    Leite, Milane S; Thomaz, Rachel; Oliveira, José Henrique M; Oliveira, Pedro L; Meyer-Fernandes, José Roberto

    2009-02-01

    Trypanosoma brucei brucei is the causative agent of animal African trypanosomiasis, also called nagana. Procyclic vector form resides in the midgut of the tsetse fly, which feeds exclusively on blood. Hemoglobin digestion occurs in the midgut resulting in an intense release of free heme. In the present study we show that the magnesium-dependent ecto-nucleoside triphosphate diphosphohydrolase (E-NTPDase) activity of procyclic T. brucei brucei is inhibited by ferrous iron and heme. The inhibition of E-NTPDase activity by ferrous iron, but not by heme, was prevented by pre-incubation of cells with catalase. However, antioxidants that permeate cells, such as PEG-catalase and N-acetyl-cysteine prevented the inhibition of E-NTPDase by heme. Ferrous iron was able to induce an increase in lipid peroxidation, while heme did not. Therefore, both ferrous iron and heme can inhibit E-NTPDase activity of T. brucei brucei by means of formation of reactive oxygen species, but apparently acting through distinct mechanisms.

  13. A Protein Complex Map of Trypanosoma brucei.

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    Vahid H Gazestani

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The functions of the majority of trypanosomatid-specific proteins are unknown, hindering our understanding of the biology and pathogenesis of Trypanosomatida. While protein-protein interactions are highly informative about protein function, a global map of protein interactions and complexes is still lacking for these important human parasites. Here, benefiting from in-depth biochemical fractionation, we systematically interrogated the co-complex interactions of more than 3354 protein groups in procyclic life stage of Trypanosoma brucei, the protozoan parasite responsible for human African trypanosomiasis. Using a rigorous methodology, our analysis led to identification of 128 high-confidence complexes encompassing 716 protein groups, including 635 protein groups that lacked experimental annotation. These complexes correlate well with known pathways as well as for proteins co-expressed across the T. brucei life cycle, and provide potential functions for a large number of previously uncharacterized proteins. We validated the functions of several novel proteins associated with the RNA-editing machinery, identifying a candidate potentially involved in the mitochondrial post-transcriptional regulation of T. brucei. Our data provide an unprecedented view of the protein complex map of T. brucei, and serve as a reliable resource for further characterization of trypanosomatid proteins. The presented results in this study are available at: www.TrypsNetDB.org.

  14. Genetic control of resistance to Trypanosoma brucei brucei infection in mice.

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    Matyáš Síma

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Trypanosoma brucei brucei infects livestock, with severe effects in horses and dogs. Mouse strains differ greatly in susceptibility to this parasite. However, no genes controlling these differences were mapped. METHODS: We studied the genetic control of survival after T. b. brucei infection using recombinant congenic (RC strains, which have a high mapping power. Each RC strain of BALB/c-c-STS/A (CcS/Dem series contains a different random subset of 12.5% genes from the parental "donor" strain STS/A and 87.5% genes from the "background" strain BALB/c. Although BALB/c and STS/A mice are similarly susceptible to T. b. brucei, the RC strain CcS-11 is more susceptible than either of them. We analyzed genetics of survival in T. b. brucei-infected F(2 hybrids between BALB/c and CcS-11. CcS-11 strain carries STS-derived segments on eight chromosomes. They were genotyped in the F(2 hybrid mice and their linkage with survival was tested by analysis of variance. RESULTS: We mapped four Tbbr (Trypanosoma brucei brucei response loci that influence survival after T. b. brucei infection. Tbbr1 (chromosome 3 and Tbbr2 (chromosome 12 have effects on survival independent of inter-genic interactions (main effects. Tbbr3 (chromosome 7 influences survival in interaction with Tbbr4 (chromosome 19. Tbbr2 is located on a segment 2.15 Mb short that contains only 26 genes. CONCLUSION: This study presents the first identification of chromosomal loci controlling susceptibility to T. b. brucei infection. While mapping in F(2 hybrids of inbred strains usually has a precision of 40-80 Mb, in RC strains we mapped Tbbr2 to a 2.15 Mb segment containing only 26 genes, which will enable an effective search for the candidate gene. Definition of susceptibility genes will improve the understanding of pathways and genetic diversity underlying the disease and may result in new strategies to overcome the active subversion of the immune system by T. b. brucei.

  15. Telomeric expression sites are highly conserved in Trypanosoma brucei.

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    Christiane Hertz-Fowler

    Full Text Available Subtelomeric regions are often under-represented in genome sequences of eukaryotes. One of the best known examples of the use of telomere proximity for adaptive purposes are the bloodstream expression sites (BESs of the African trypanosome Trypanosoma brucei. To enhance our understanding of BES structure and function in host adaptation and immune evasion, the BES repertoire from the Lister 427 strain of T. brucei were independently tagged and sequenced. BESs are polymorphic in size and structure but reveal a surprisingly conserved architecture in the context of extensive recombination. Very small BESs do exist and many functioning BESs do not contain the full complement of expression site associated genes (ESAGs. The consequences of duplicated or missing ESAGs, including ESAG9, a newly named ESAG12, and additional variant surface glycoprotein genes (VSGs were evaluated by functional assays after BESs were tagged with a drug-resistance gene. Phylogenetic analysis of constituent ESAG families suggests that BESs are sequence mosaics and that extensive recombination has shaped the evolution of the BES repertoire. This work opens important perspectives in understanding the molecular mechanisms of antigenic variation, a widely used strategy for immune evasion in pathogens, and telomere biology.

  16. A search for Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense diagnostic antigens by proteomic screening and targeted cloning.

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    Theresa Manful

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The only available diagnostic method for East African trypanosomiasis is light microscopy of blood samples. A simple immunodiagnostic would greatly aid trypanosomiasis control. METHODOLOGY AND PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: To find trypanosome proteins that are specifically recognised by sera from human sleeping sickness patients, we have screened the Trypanosoma brucei brucei proteome by Western blotting. Using cytosolic, cytoskeletal and glycosomal fractions, we found that the vast majority of abundant trypanosome proteins is not specifically recognised by patient sera. We identified phosphoglycerate kinase (PGKC, heat shock protein (HSP70, and histones H2B and H3 as possible candidate diagnostic antigens. These proteins, plus paraflagellar rod protein 1, rhodesain (a cysteine protease, and an extracellular fragment of the Trypanosoma brucei nucleoside transporter TbNT10, were expressed in E. coli and tested for reactivity with patient and control sera. Only TbHSP70 was preferentially recognized by patient sera, but the sensitivity and specificity were insufficient for use of TbHSP70 alone as a diagnostic. Immunoprecipitation using a native protein extract revealed no specifically reacting proteins. CONCLUSIONS: No abundant T. brucei soluble, glycosomal or cytoskeletal protein is likely to be useful in diagnosis. To find useful diagnostic antigens it will therefore be necessary to use more sophisticated proteomic methods, or to test a very large panel of candidate proteins.

  17. [Pseudo-tumoral human African trypanosomiasis due to Trypanosoma gambiense. Clinical and tomodensitometry study (author's transl)].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poisson, M; Bleibel, J M; Regnier, A; Mashaly, R; Le Bigot, P; Danis, M; Buge, A

    The authors report an observation of african trypanosomiasis due to Trypanosoma Gambiense, clinical signs included massive and progressive hemiplegia, papillary edema and vascular shift from median line at arteriography. These pseudo tumoral clinical features are unusual in this disease. Asymetrical heterogenous hypodensities of the centrum semioval are dominant in the initial CT scanner aspect. The confrontation of CT scanner images to the clinical and evolutive data suggests the presence of associated cerebral edema and demyelination. With treatment, hypodensities were regressing while images of subcortical atrophy appeared. Lastly, in spite of severe general signs and the importance of neurological deficit, arsenical treatment associated with high doses of corticotherapy lead to a rapid improvement.

  18. Transport proteins determine drug sensitivity and resistance in a protozoan parasite, Trypanosoma brucei

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    Jane Claire Munday

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Drug resistance in pathogenic protozoa is very often caused by changes to the ‘transportome’ of the parasites. In Trypanosoma brucei, several transporters have been implicated in uptake of the main classes of drugs, diamidines and melaminophenyl arsenicals. The resistance mechanism had been thought to be due to loss of a transporter known to carry both types of agents: the aminopurine transporter P2, encoded by the gene TbAT1. However, although loss of P2 activity is well-documented as the cause of resistance to the veterinary diamidine diminazene aceturate (Berenil®, cross-resistance between the human-use arsenical melarsoprol and the diamidine pentamidine (MPXR is the result of loss of a separate High Affinity Pentamidine Transporter (HAPT1. A genome-wide RNAi library screen for resistance to pentamidine, published in 2012, gave the key to the genetic identity of HAPT1 by linking the phenomenon to a locus that contains the closely related T. brucei aquaglyceroporin genes TbAQP2 and TbAQP3. Further analysis determined that knockdown of only one pore, TbAQP2, produced the MPXR phenotype. TbAQP2 is an unconventional aquaglyceroporin with unique residues in the selectivity region of the pore, and it was found that in several MPXR lab strains the WT gene was either absent or replaced by a chimeric protein, recombined with parts of TbAQP3. Importantly, wild-type AQP2 was also absent in field isolates of T. b. gambiense, correlating with the outcome of melarsoprol treatment. Expression of a wild-type copy of TbAQP2 in even the most resistant strain completely reversed MPXR and re-introduced HAPT1 function and transport kinetics. Expression of TbAQP2 in Leishmania mexicana introduced a pentamidine transport activity indistinguishable from HAPT1. Although TbAQP2 has been shown to function as a classical aquaglyceroporin it is now clear that it is also a high affinity drug transporter, HAPT1. We discuss here a possible structural rationale for this

  19. Transport proteins determine drug sensitivity and resistance in a protozoan parasite, Trypanosoma brucei

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munday, Jane C.; Settimo, Luca; de Koning, Harry P.

    2015-01-01

    Drug resistance in pathogenic protozoa is very often caused by changes to the ‘transportome’ of the parasites. In Trypanosoma brucei, several transporters have been implicated in uptake of the main classes of drugs, diamidines and melaminophenyl arsenicals. The resistance mechanism had been thought to be due to loss of a transporter known to carry both types of agents: the aminopurine transporter P2, encoded by the gene TbAT1. However, although loss of P2 activity is well-documented as the cause of resistance to the veterinary diamidine diminazene aceturate (DA; Berenil®), cross-resistance between the human-use arsenical melarsoprol and the diamidine pentamidine (melarsoprol/pentamidine cross resistance, MPXR) is the result of loss of a separate high affinity pentamidine transporter (HAPT1). A genome-wide RNAi library screen for resistance to pentamidine, published in 2012, gave the key to the genetic identity of HAPT1 by linking the phenomenon to a locus that contains the closely related T. brucei aquaglyceroporin genes TbAQP2 and TbAQP3. Further analysis determined that knockdown of only one pore, TbAQP2, produced the MPXR phenotype. TbAQP2 is an unconventional aquaglyceroporin with unique residues in the “selectivity region” of the pore, and it was found that in several MPXR lab strains the WT gene was either absent or replaced by a chimeric protein, recombined with parts of TbAQP3. Importantly, wild-type AQP2 was also absent in field isolates of T. b. gambiense, correlating with the outcome of melarsoprol treatment. Expression of a wild-type copy of TbAQP2 in even the most resistant strain completely reversed MPXR and re-introduced HAPT1 function and transport kinetics. Expression of TbAQP2 in Leishmania mexicana introduced a pentamidine transport activity indistinguishable from HAPT1. Although TbAQP2 has been shown to function as a classical aquaglyceroporin it is now clear that it is also a high affinity drug transporter, HAPT1. We discuss here a

  20. Motility modes of the parasite Trypanosoma brucei

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    Temel, Fatma Zeynep; Qu, Zijie; McAllaster, Michael; de Graffenried, Christopher; Breuer, Kenneth

    2015-11-01

    The parasitic single-celled protozoan Trypanosoma brucei causes African Sleeping Sickness, which is a fatal disease in humans and animals that threatens more than 60 million people in 36 African countries. Cell motility plays a critical role in the developmental phases and dissemination of the parasite. Unlike many other motile cells such as bacteria Escherichia coli or Caulobacter crescentus, the flagellum of T. brucei is attached along the length of its awl-like body, producing a unique mode of motility that is not fully understood or characterized. Here, we report on the motility of T. brucei, which swims using its single flagellum employing both rotating and undulating propulsion modes. We tracked cells in real-time in three dimensions using fluorescent microscopy. Data obtained from experiments using both short-term tracking within the field of view and long-term tracking using a tracking microscope were analyzed. Motility modes and swimming speed were analyzed as functions of cell size, rotation rate and undulation pattern. Research supported by NSF.

  1. Trypanosoma brucei: a putative RNA polymerase II promoter.

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    Bayele, Henry K

    2009-12-01

    RNA polymerase II (pol II) promoters are rare in the African trypanosome Trypanosoma brucei because gene regulation in the parasite is complex and polycistronic. Here, we describe a putative pol II promoter and its structure-function relationship. The promoter has features of an archetypal eukaryotic pol II promoter including putative canonical CCAAT and TATA boxes, and an initiator element. However, the spatial arrangement of these elements is only similar to yeast pol II promoters. Deletion mapping and transcription assays enabled delineation of a minimal promoter that could drive orientation-independent reporter gene expression suggesting that it may be a bidirectional promoter. In vitro transcription in a heterologous nuclear extract revealed that the promoter can be recognized by the basal eukaryotic transcription complex. This suggests that the transcription machinery in the parasite may be very similar to those of other eukaryotes.

  2. Phylogeny of Trypanosoma brucei and Trypanosoma evansi in naturally infected cattle in Nigeria by analysis of repetitive and ribosomal DNA sequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takeet, Michael I; Peters, Sunday O; Fagbemi, Benjamin O; De Donato, Marcos; Takeet, Vivian O; Wheto, Mathew; Imumorin, Ikhide G

    2016-08-01

    In continuing efforts to better understand the genetics of bovine trypanosomosis, we assessed genetic diversity of Trypanosoma brucei and Trypanosoma evansi in naturally infected Nigerian cattle using repetitive DNA and internal transcribed spacer 1 of rDNA sequences and compared these sequences to species from other countries. The length of repetitive DNA sequences in both species ranged from 161 to 244 bp and 239 to 240 bp for T. brucei and T. evansi, respectively, while the ITS1 rDNA sequences length range from 299 to 364 bp. The mean GC content of ITS1 rDNA sequences was 33.57 %, and that of repetitive sequences were 39.9 and 31.1 % for T. brucei and T. evansi, respectively. Result from sequence alignment revealed both T. brucei and T. evansi repetitive DNA sequences to be more polymorphic than ITS1 rDNA sequences, with moderate points of deletion and insertions. T. brucei separated into two clades when subjected to phylogenetic analysis. T. evansi repetitive DNA sequences clustered tightly within the T. brucei clade while the ITS1 rDNA sequences of T. brucei were clearly separated from T. theileri and T. vivax individually used as outgroups. This study suggest that ITS1 rDNA sequences may not be suitable for phylogenetic differentiation of the Trypanozoon group and also suggest that T. evansi may be a phenotypic variant of T. brucei which may have potential implications in designing prevention and therapeutic strategies.

  3. The phosphoarginine energy-buffering system of trypanosoma brucei involves multiple arginine kinase isoforms with different subcellular locations.

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    Frank Voncken

    Full Text Available Phosphagen energy-buffering systems play an essential role in regulating the cellular energy homeostasis in periods of high-energy demand or energy supply fluctuations. Here we describe the phosphoarginine/arginine kinase system of the kinetoplastid parasite Trypanosoma brucei, consisting of three highly similar arginine kinase isoforms (TbAK1-3. Immunofluorescence microscopy using myc-tagged protein versions revealed that each isoform is located in a specific subcellular compartment: TbAK1 is exclusively found in the flagellum, TbAK2 in the glycosome, and TbAK3 in the cytosol of T. brucei. The flagellar location of TbAK1 is dependent on a 22 amino acid long N-terminal sequence, which is sufficient for targeting a GFP-fusion protein to the trypanosome flagellum. The glycosomal location of TbAK2 is in agreement with the presence of a conserved peroxisomal targeting signal, the C-terminal tripeptide 'SNL'. TbAK3 lacks any apparent targeting sequences and is accordingly located in the cytosol of the parasite. Northern blot analysis indicated that each TbAK isoform is differentially expressed in bloodstream and procyclic forms of T. brucei, while the total cellular arginine kinase activity was 3-fold higher in bloodstream form trypanosomes. These results suggest a substantial change in the temporal and spatial energy requirements during parasite differentiation. Increased arginine kinase activity improved growth of procyclic form T. brucei during oxidative challenges with hydrogen peroxide. Elimination of the total cellular arginine kinase activity by RNA interference significantly decreased growth (>90% of procyclic form T. brucei under standard culture conditions and was lethal for this life cycle stage in the presence of hydrogen peroxide. The putative physiological roles of the different TbAK isoforms in T. brucei are further discussed.

  4. Trypanosoma evansi is alike to Trypanosoma brucei brucei in the subcellular localisation of glycolytic enzymes

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    S Andrea Moreno

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Trypanosoma evansi, which causes surra, is descended from Trypanosoma brucei brucei, which causes nagana. Although both parasites are presumed to be metabolically similar, insufficient knowledge of T. evansi precludes a full comparison. Herein, we provide the first report on the subcellular localisation of the glycolytic enzymes in T. evansi, which is a alike to that of the bloodstream form (BSF of T. b. brucei: (i fructose-bisphosphate aldolase, glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH, hexokinase, phosphofructokinase, glucose-6-phosphate isomerase, phosphoglycerate kinase, triosephosphate isomerase (glycolytic enzymes and glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (a glycolysis-auxiliary enzyme in glycosomes, (ii enolase, phosphoglycerate mutase, pyruvate kinase (glycolytic enzymes and a GAPDH isoenzyme in the cytosol, (iii malate dehydrogenase in cytosol and (iv glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase in both glycosomes and the cytosol. Specific enzymatic activities also suggest that T. evansi is alike to the BSF of T. b. brucei in glycolytic flux, which is much faster than the pentose phosphate pathway flux, and in the involvement of cytosolic GAPDH in the NAD+/NADH balance. These similarities were expected based on the close phylogenetic relationship of both parasites.

  5. Trypanosoma evansi is alike to Trypanosoma brucei brucei in the subcellular localisation of glycolytic enzymes.

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    Moreno, S Andrea; Nava, Mayerly

    2015-06-01

    Trypanosoma evansi, which causes surra, is descended from Trypanosoma brucei brucei, which causes nagana. Although both parasites are presumed to be metabolically similar, insufficient knowledge of T. evansi precludes a full comparison. Herein, we provide the first report on the subcellular localisation of the glycolytic enzymes in T. evansi, which is a alike to that of the bloodstream form (BSF) of T. b. brucei: (i) fructose-bisphosphate aldolase, glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH), hexokinase, phosphofructokinase, glucose-6-phosphate isomerase, phosphoglycerate kinase, triosephosphate isomerase (glycolytic enzymes) and glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (a glycolysis-auxiliary enzyme) in glycosomes, (ii) enolase, phosphoglycerate mutase, pyruvate kinase (glycolytic enzymes) and a GAPDH isoenzyme in the cytosol, (iii) malate dehydrogenase in cytosol and (iv) glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase in both glycosomes and the cytosol. Specific enzymatic activities also suggest that T. evansi is alike to the BSF of T. b. brucei in glycolytic flux, which is much faster than the pentose phosphate pathway flux, and in the involvement of cytosolic GAPDH in the NAD+/NADH balance. These similarities were expected based on the close phylogenetic relationship of both parasites.

  6. Cell-penetrating peptide TP10 shows broad-spectrum activity against both Plasmodium falciparum and Trypanosoma brucei brucei.

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    Arrighi, Romanico B G; Ebikeme, Charles; Jiang, Yang; Ranford-Cartwright, Lisa; Barrett, Michael P; Langel, Ulo; Faye, Ingrid

    2008-09-01

    Malaria and trypanosomiasis are diseases which afflict millions and for which novel therapies are urgently required. We have tested two well-characterized cell-penetrating peptides (CPPs) for antiparasitic activity. One CPP, designated TP10, has broad-spectrum antiparasitic activity against Plasmodium falciparum, both blood and mosquito stages, and against blood-stage Trypanosoma brucei brucei.

  7. Clinical and hematological study of Trypanosoma brucei and Trypanosoma congolense in cattle in Mosul City, Iraq

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    Al-Badrani, B. A

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available An out-break of trypanosomosis was reported and subsequently investigated in Mosul city, Iraq. Twenty seven blood samples were received at the Clinical pathology Laboratory of Veterinary Teaching Hospital, University of Mosul, from fifteen cows (2-5 years old and twelve calves (10-12 months old of different farms located around Mosul city. Clinical signs of the infected animals revealed fever, progressive weight loss, anemia, and frequent recumbent position. Identification of trypanosome species were based on their motility using morphological differentiation on Giemsa or Leishman stained that showed trypomastigot which can be classified according to the biometrical data into T. brucei and T. congolense. A decreased was also observed in some blood parameters. To our knowledge, this is the first record of T. brucei and T. congolense infection in cattle. This study also suggested that trypanosomosis is associated with introduction of exotic breeds of cattle into Mosul, Iraq.

  8. CHARACTERIZATION AND ANTIPARASITIC ACTIVITY OF BENZOPHENONE THIOSEMICARBAZONES ON Trypanosoma brucei brucei

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    Georges C. Accrombessi

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available The structure of four synthesized thiosemicarbazones, substituted or not, of benzophenone has been confirmed by spectrometrical analysis IR, NMR 1H and 13C. Their anti-trypanosomal activities were evaluated on Trypanosoma brucei brucei. Among these compounds, benzophenone 4 phenyl-3-thiosemicarbazone 4 has the highest activity with the half-inhibitory concentration (IC50 = 8.48 micromolar (µM. Benzophenone 4-methyl-3-thiosemicarbazone 3 and benzophenone thiosemicarbazone 1 showed moderate anti-trypanosomal activity with IC50 values equal to 23.27 µM and 67.17 µM respectively. Benzophenone 2 methyl-3-thiosemicarbazone 2 showed no activity up to IC50 = 371.74 µM.

  9. Proline Metabolism is Essential for Trypanosoma brucei brucei Survival in the Tsetse Vector

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mantilla, Brian S.; Dyer, Naomi A.; Biran, Marc; Bringaud, Frédéric; Lehane, Michael J.; Acosta-Serrano, Alvaro

    2017-01-01

    Adaptation to different nutritional environments is essential for life cycle completion by all Trypanosoma brucei sub-species. In the tsetse fly vector, L-proline is among the most abundant amino acids and is mainly used by the fly for lactation and to fuel flight muscle. The procyclic (insect) stage of T. b. brucei uses L-proline as its main carbon source, relying on an efficient catabolic pathway to convert it to glutamate, and then to succinate, acetate and alanine as the main secreted end products. Here we investigated the essentiality of an undisrupted proline catabolic pathway in T. b. brucei by studying mitochondrial Δ1-pyrroline-5-carboxylate dehydrogenase (TbP5CDH), which catalyzes the irreversible conversion of gamma-glutamate semialdehyde (γGS) into L-glutamate and NADH. In addition, we provided evidence for the absence of a functional proline biosynthetic pathway. TbP5CDH expression is developmentally regulated in the insect stages of the parasite, but absent in bloodstream forms grown in vitro. RNAi down-regulation of TbP5CDH severely affected the growth of procyclic trypanosomes in vitro in the absence of glucose, and altered the metabolic flux when proline was the sole carbon source. Furthermore, TbP5CDH knocked-down cells exhibited alterations in the mitochondrial inner membrane potential (ΔΨm), respiratory control ratio and ATP production. Also, changes in the proline-glutamate oxidative capacity slightly affected the surface expression of the major surface glycoprotein EP-procyclin. In the tsetse, TbP5CDH knocked-down cells were impaired and thus unable to colonize the fly’s midgut, probably due to the lack of glucose between bloodmeals. Altogether, our data show that the regulated expression of the proline metabolism pathway in T. b. brucei allows this parasite to adapt to the nutritional environment of the tsetse midgut. PMID:28114403

  10. Classical clinical signs in rats experimemtally infected with Trypanosoma brucei

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Nwoha Rosemary Ijeoma Ogechi; Omamegbe Joseph Omolathebu

    2015-01-01

    Objective:To investigate clinical signs in Trypanosoma brucei infection in albino rats. Methods:Fourteen rats grouped into 2 with 7 rats in each group were used to determine classical clinical manifestation of Trypanosoma brucei infection in rats. Group A rats were uninfected control and Group B rats were infected with Trypanosoma brucei. Results:Parasitaemia was recorded in Group B by (3.86±0.34) d and the peak of parasitaemia was observed at Day 5 post infection. Classical signs observed included squint eyes, raised whiskers, lethargy, no weight loss, pyrexia, isolation from the other rats, and starry hair coat. Conclusions:These signs could be diagnostic or aid in diagnosis of Trypanosoma brucei infection in rats.

  11. The transcriptome of the human pathogen Trypanosoma brucei at single-nucleotide resolution.

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    Nikolay G Kolev

    Full Text Available The genome of Trypanosoma brucei, the causative agent of African trypanosomiasis, was published five years ago, yet identification of all genes and their transcripts remains to be accomplished. Annotation is challenged by the organization of genes transcribed by RNA polymerase II (Pol II into long unidirectional gene clusters with no knowledge of how transcription is initiated. Here we report a single-nucleotide resolution genomic map of the T. brucei transcriptome, adding 1,114 new transcripts, including 103 non-coding RNAs, confirming and correcting many of the annotated features and revealing an extensive heterogeneity of 5' and 3' ends. Some of the new transcripts encode polypeptides that are either conserved in T. cruzi and Leishmania major or were previously detected in mass spectrometry analyses. High-throughput RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq was sensitive enough to detect transcripts at putative Pol II transcription initiation sites. Our results, as well as recent data from the literature, indicate that transcription initiation is not solely restricted to regions at the beginning of gene clusters, but may occur at internal sites. We also provide evidence that transcription at all putative initiation sites in T. brucei is bidirectional, a recently recognized fundamental property of eukaryotic promoters. Our results have implications for gene expression patterns in other important human pathogens with similar genome organization (Trypanosoma cruzi, Leishmania sp. and revealed heterogeneity in pre-mRNA processing that could potentially contribute to the survival and success of the parasite population in the insect vector and the mammalian host.

  12. Phenolic Constituents of Medicinal Plants with Activity against Trypanosoma brucei

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    Ya Nan Sun

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs affect over one billion people all over the world. These diseases are classified as neglected because they impact populations in areas with poor financial conditions and hence do not attract sufficient research investment. Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT or sleeping sickness, caused by the parasite Trypanosoma brucei, is one of the NTDs. The current therapeutic interventions for T. brucei infections often have toxic side effects or require hospitalization so that they are not available in the rural environments where HAT occurs. Furthermore, parasite resistance is increasing, so that there is an urgent need to identify novel lead compounds against this infection. Recognizing the wide structural diversity of natural products, we desired to explore and identify novel antitrypanosomal chemotypes from a collection of natural products obtained from plants. In this study, 440 pure compounds from various medicinal plants were tested against T. brucei by in a screening using whole cell in vitro assays. As the result, twenty-two phenolic compounds exhibited potent activity against cultures of T. brucei. Among them, eight compounds—4, 7, 11, 14, 15, 18, 20, and 21—showed inhibitory activity against T. brucei, with IC50 values below 5 µM, ranging from 0.52 to 4.70 μM. Based on these results, we attempt to establish some general trends with respect to structure-activity relationships, which indicate that further investigation and optimization of these derivatives might enable the preparation of potentially useful compounds for treating HAT.

  13. Regulation and spatial organization of PCNA in Trypanosoma brucei

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kaufmann, Doris; Gassen, Alwine [University of Munich (LMU), Department Biology I, Genetics, Grosshaderner Str. 2-4, 82152 Martinsried (Germany); Maiser, Andreas; Leonhardt, Heinrich [University of Munich (LMU), Department Biology II, Grosshaderner Str. 2-4, 82152 Martinsried (Germany); Janzen, Christian J., E-mail: christian.janzen@uni-wuerzburg.de [University of Munich (LMU), Department Biology I, Genetics, Grosshaderner Str. 2-4, 82152 Martinsried (Germany)

    2012-03-23

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Characterization of the proliferating cell nuclear antigen in Trypanosoma brucei (TbPCNA). Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer TbPCNA is a suitable marker to detect replication in T. brucei. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer TbPCNA distribution and regulation is different compared to closely related parasites T. cruzi and Leishmania donovani. -- Abstract: As in most eukaryotic cells, replication is regulated by a conserved group of proteins in the early-diverged parasite Trypanosoma brucei. Only a few components of the replication machinery have been described in this parasite and regulation, sub-nuclear localization and timing of replication are not well understood. We characterized the proliferating cell nuclear antigen in T. brucei (TbPCNA) to establish a spatial and temporal marker for replication. Interestingly, PCNA distribution and regulation is different compared to the closely related parasites Trypanosoma cruzi and Leishmania donovani. TbPCNA foci are clearly detectable during S phase of the cell cycle but in contrast to T. cruzi they are not preferentially located at the nuclear periphery. Furthermore, PCNA seems to be degraded when cells enter G2 phase in T. brucei suggesting different modes of replication regulation or functions of PCNA in these closely related eukaryotes.

  14. Effect of ivermectin on Trypanosoma brucei brucei in experimentally infected mice

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    Udensi K. Udensi & A.F. Fagbenro-Beyioku

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Background & objectives: Human and livestock African trypanosomiasis, otherwise known as sleeping sickness,is a neglected tropical disease of public health importance in west and central Africa. In view of the adverse sideeffects of the antitrypanosomal drugs, the relatively few side effects observed in ivermectin use, and becauseboth onchocerciasis and typanosomiasis occur in overlapping foci in Africa, it would be desirable if the ivermectinthat has been used successfully on onchocerciasis management could also be used in the control and treatmentof trypanosomiasis.Method: In this study, prophylactic and therapeutic effects of ivermectin (Mectizan were investigated in albinomice infected with a Nigerian strain of Trypanosoma brucei brucei.Results: A 300 μg/ml/kg dose had the most effective impact because it showed the highest mean survival time of12 days in both the treatment and prophylactic groups of mice. This dose also enhanced the defence capacity ofthe treated groups. It also had positive influence on the packed cell volume (PCV and the state of anaemia inthe trypanosome infected mice, hence, improving their survivability.Interpretation & conclusions: Our report indicates that using the 300 μg/ml/kg dose of ivermectin increases themean survival period from 5 to 12 days. This suggests that ivermectin could be possibly used in the treatment oftrypanosomiasis. Further studies will be required to show whether proper treatment may entail a single dose, asused in this study; an increased number of doses, or combinations with other drugs.

  15. TbFlabarin, a flagellar protein of Trypanosoma brucei, highlights differences between Leishmania and Trypanosoma flagellar-targeting signals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tetaud, Emmanuel; Lefebvre, Michèle; M'Bang-Benet, Diane-Ethna; Crobu, Lucien; Blancard, Corinne; Sterkers, Yvon; Pages, Michel; Bastien, Patrick; Merlin, Gilles

    2016-07-01

    TbFlabarin is the Trypanosoma brucei orthologue of the Leishmania flagellar protein LdFlabarin but its sequence is 33% shorter than LdFlabarin, as it lacks a C-terminal domain that is indispensable for LdFlabarin to localize to the Leishmania flagellum. TbFlabarin is mainly expressed in the procyclic forms of the parasite and localized to the flagellum, but only when two palmitoylable cysteines at positions 3 and 4 are present. TbFlabarin is more strongly attached to the membrane fraction than its Leishmania counterpart, as it resists complete solubilization with as much as 0.5% NP-40. Expression ablation by RNA interference did not change parasite growth in culture, its morphology or apparent motility. Heterologous expression showed that neither TbFlabarin in L. amazonensis nor LdFlabarin in T. brucei localized to the flagellum, revealing non-cross-reacting targeting signals between the two species.

  16. Nanomolar Inhibitors of Trypanosoma brucei RNA Triphosphatase

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    Paul Smith

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Eukaryal taxa differ with respect to the structure and mechanism of the RNA triphosphatase (RTPase component of the mRNA capping apparatus. Protozoa, fungi, and certain DNA viruses have a metal-dependent RTPase that belongs to the triphosphate tunnel metalloenzyme (TTM superfamily. Because the structures, active sites, and chemical mechanisms of the TTM-type RTPases differ from those of mammalian RTPases, the TTM RTPases are potential targets for antiprotozoal, antifungal, and antiviral drug discovery. Here, we employed RNA interference (RNAi knockdown methods to show that Trypanosoma brucei RTPase Cet1 (TbCet1 is necessary for proliferation of procyclic cells in culture. We then conducted a high-throughput biochemical screen for small-molecule inhibitors of the phosphohydrolase activity of TbCet1. We identified several classes of chemicals—including chlorogenic acids, phenolic glycopyranosides, flavonoids, and other phenolics—that inhibit TbCet1 with nanomolar to low-micromolar 50% inhibitory concentrations (IC50s. We confirmed the activity of these compounds, and tested various analogs thereof, by direct manual assays of TbCet1 phosphohydrolase activity. The most potent nanomolar inhibitors included tetracaffeoylquinic acid, 5-galloylgalloylquinic acid, pentagalloylglucose, rosmarinic acid, and miquelianin. TbCet1 inhibitors were less active (or inactive against the orthologous TTM-type RTPases of mimivirus, baculovirus, and budding yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Our results affirm that a TTM RTPase is subject to potent inhibition by small molecules, with the caveat that parallel screens against TTM RTPases from multiple different pathogens may be required to fully probe the chemical space of TTM inhibition.

  17. The cell cycle regulated transcriptome of Trypanosoma brucei.

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    Stuart K Archer

    Full Text Available Progression of the eukaryotic cell cycle requires the regulation of hundreds of genes to ensure that they are expressed at the required times. Integral to cell cycle progression in yeast and animal cells are temporally controlled, progressive waves of transcription mediated by cell cycle-regulated transcription factors. However, in the kinetoplastids, a group of early-branching eukaryotes including many important pathogens, transcriptional regulation is almost completely absent, raising questions about the extent of cell-cycle regulation in these organisms and the mechanisms whereby regulation is achieved. Here, we analyse gene expression over the Trypanosoma brucei cell cycle, measuring changes in mRNA abundance on a transcriptome-wide scale. We developed a "double-cut" elutriation procedure to select unperturbed, highly synchronous cell populations from log-phase cultures, and compared this to synchronization by starvation. Transcriptome profiling over the cell cycle revealed the regulation of at least 430 genes. While only a minority were homologous to known cell cycle regulated transcripts in yeast or human, their functions correlated with the cellular processes occurring at the time of peak expression. We searched for potential target sites of RNA-binding proteins in these transcripts, which might earmark them for selective degradation or stabilization. Over-represented sequence motifs were found in several co-regulated transcript groups and were conserved in other kinetoplastids. Furthermore, we found evidence for cell-cycle regulation of a flagellar protein regulon with a highly conserved sequence motif, bearing similarity to consensus PUF-protein binding motifs. RNA sequence motifs that are functional in cell-cycle regulation were more widespread than previously expected and conserved within kinetoplastids. These findings highlight the central importance of post-transcriptional regulation in the proliferation of parasitic kinetoplastids.

  18. A target-based high throughput screen yields Trypanosoma brucei hexokinase small molecule inhibitors with antiparasitic activity.

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    Elizabeth R Sharlow

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The parasitic protozoan Trypanosoma brucei utilizes glycolysis exclusively for ATP production during infection of the mammalian host. The first step in this metabolic pathway is mediated by hexokinase (TbHK, an enzyme essential to the parasite that transfers the gamma-phospho of ATP to a hexose. Here we describe the identification and confirmation of novel small molecule inhibitors of bacterially expressed TbHK1, one of two TbHKs expressed by T. brucei, using a high throughput screening assay. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Exploiting optimized high throughput screening assay procedures, we interrogated 220,233 unique compounds and identified 239 active compounds from which ten small molecules were further characterized. Computation chemical cluster analyses indicated that six compounds were structurally related while the remaining four compounds were classified as unrelated or singletons. All ten compounds were approximately 20-17,000-fold more potent than lonidamine, a previously identified TbHK1 inhibitor. Seven compounds inhibited T. brucei blood stage form parasite growth (0.03brucei parasites, Leishmania promastigotes, and mammalian cell lines. Analysis of two structurally related compounds, ebselen and SID 17387000, revealed that both were mixed inhibitors of TbHK1 with respect to ATP. Additionally, both compounds inhibited parasite lysate-derived HK activity. None of the compounds displayed structural similarity to known hexokinase inhibitors or human African trypanosomiasis therapeutics. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The novel chemotypes identified here could represent leads for future therapeutic development against the African trypanosome.

  19. A tropical tale: how Naja nigricollis venom beats Trypanosoma brucei

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Martos Esteban, Andrea; Laustsen, Andreas Hougaard; Carrington, Mark

    Trypanosoma brucei is a parasitic protozoan species capable to infecting insect vectors whose bite further produces African sleeping sickness inhuman beings [1]. During the parasite’s extracellular life in the mammalian host,its outer coat, mainly composed of Variable Surface Glycoproteins (VSGs...

  20. Investigating the Chaperone Properties of a Novel Heat Shock Protein, Hsp70.c, from Trypanosoma brucei

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    Adélle Burger

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The neglected tropical disease, African Trypanosomiasis, is fatal and has a crippling impact on economic development. Heat shock protein 70 (Hsp70 is an important molecular chaperone that is expressed in response to stress and Hsp40 acts as its co-chaperone. These proteins play a wide range of roles in the cell and they are required to assist the parasite as it moves from a cold blooded insect vector to a warm blooded mammalian host. A novel cytosolic Hsp70, from Trypanosoma brucei, TbHsp70.c, contains an acidic substrate binding domain and lacks the C-terminal EEVD motif. The ability of a cytosolic Hsp40 from Trypanosoma brucei J protein 2, Tbj2, to function as a co-chaperone of TbHsp70.c was investigated. The main objective was to functionally characterize TbHsp70.c to further expand our knowledge of parasite biology. TbHsp70.c and Tbj2 were heterologously expressed and purified and both proteins displayed the ability to suppress aggregation of thermolabile MDH and chemically denatured rhodanese. ATPase assays revealed a 2.8-fold stimulation of the ATPase activity of TbHsp70.c by Tbj2. TbHsp70.c and Tbj2 both demonstrated chaperone activity and Tbj2 functions as a co-chaperone of TbHsp70.c. In vivo heat stress experiments indicated upregulation of the expression levels of TbHsp70.c.

  1. In vitro antitrypanosomal activity of plant terpenes against Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otoguro, Kazuhiko; Iwatsuki, Masato; Ishiyama, Aki; Namatame, Miyuki; Nishihara-Tukashima, Aki; Kiyohara, Hiroaki; Hashimoto, Toshihiro; Asakawa, Yoshinori; Omura, Satoshi; Yamada, Haruki

    2011-11-01

    During the course of screening to discover antitrypanosomal compounds, 24 known plant terpenes (6 sesquiterpenes, 14 sesquiterpene lactones and 4 diterpenes) were evaluated for in vitro antitrypanosomal activity against Trypanosoma brucei brucei. Among them, 22 terpenes exhibited antitrypanosomal activity. In particular, α-eudesmol, hinesol, nardosinone and 4-peroxy-1,2,4,5-tetrahydro-α-santonin all exhibited selective and potent antitrypanosomal activities in vitro. Detailed here in an in vitro antitrypanosomal properties and cytotoxicities of the 24 terpenes compared with two therapeutic antitrypanosomal drugs (eflornithine and suramin). This finding represents the first report of promising trypanocidal activity of these terpenes. Present results also provide some valuable insight with regard to structure-activity relationships and the possible mode of action of the compounds.

  2. Single molecule analysis of Trypanosoma brucei DNA replication dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calderano, Simone Guedes; Drosopoulos, William C; Quaresma, Marina Mônaco; Marques, Catarina A; Kosiyatrakul, Settapong; McCulloch, Richard; Schildkraut, Carl L; Elias, Maria Carolina

    2015-03-11

    Eukaryotic genome duplication relies on origins of replication, distributed over multiple chromosomes, to initiate DNA replication. A recent genome-wide analysis of Trypanosoma brucei, the etiological agent of sleeping sickness, localized its replication origins to the boundaries of multigenic transcription units. To better understand genomic replication in this organism, we examined replication by single molecule analysis of replicated DNA. We determined the average speed of replication forks of procyclic and bloodstream form cells and we found that T. brucei DNA replication rate is similar to rates seen in other eukaryotes. We also analyzed the replication dynamics of a central region of chromosome 1 in procyclic forms. We present evidence for replication terminating within the central part of the chromosome and thus emanating from both sides, suggesting a previously unmapped origin toward the 5' extremity of chromosome 1. Also, termination is not at a fixed location in chromosome 1, but is rather variable. Importantly, we found a replication origin located near an ORC1/CDC6 binding site that is detected after replicative stress induced by hydroxyurea treatment, suggesting it may be a dormant origin activated in response to replicative stress. Collectively, our findings support the existence of more replication origins in T. brucei than previously appreciated.

  3. Trypanosoma brucei mitochondrial respiratome: Composition and organization in procyclic form

    KAUST Repository

    Acestor, Nathalie

    2011-05-24

    The mitochondrial respiratory chain is comprised of four different protein complexes (I-IV), which are responsible for electron transport and generation of proton gradient in the mitochondrial intermembrane space. This proton gradient is then used by F oF 1-ATP synthase (complex V) to produce ATP by oxidative phosphorylation. In this study, the respiratory complexes I, II, and III were affinity purified from Trypanosoma brucei procyclic form cells and their composition was determined by mass spectrometry. The results along with those that we previously reported for complexes IV and V showed that the respiratome of Trypanosoma is divergent because many of its proteins are unique to this group of organisms. The studies also identified two mitochondrial subunit proteins of respiratory complex IV that are encoded by edited RNAs. Proteomics data from analyses of complexes purified using numerous tagged component proteins in each of the five complexes were used to generate the first predicted protein-protein interaction network of the Trypanosoma brucei respiratory chain. These results provide the first comprehensive insight into the unique composition of the respiratory complexes in Trypanosoma brucei, an early diverged eukaryotic pathogen. © 2011 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  4. Intraclonal mating occurs during tsetse transmission of Trypanosoma brucei

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    Ferris Vanessa

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Mating in Trypanosoma brucei is a non-obligatory event, triggered by the co-occurrence of different strains in the salivary glands of the vector. Recombinants that result from intra- rather than interclonal mating have been detected, but only in crosses of two different trypanosome strains. This has led to the hypothesis that when trypanosomes recognize a different strain, they release a diffusible factor or pheromone that triggers mating in any cell in the vicinity whether it is of the same or a different strain. This idea assumes that the trypanosome can recognize self and non-self, although there is as yet no evidence for the existence of mating types in T. brucei. Results We investigated intraclonal mating in T. b. brucei by crossing red and green fluorescent lines of a single strain, so that recombinant progeny can be detected in the fly by yellow fluorescence. For strain 1738, seven flies had both red and green trypanosomes in the salivary glands and, in three, yellow trypanosomes were also observed, although they could not be recovered for subsequent analysis. Nonetheless, both red and non-fluorescent clones from these flies had recombinant genotypes as judged by microsatellite and karyotype analyses, and some also had raised DNA contents, suggesting recombination or genome duplication. Strain J10 produced similar results indicative of intraclonal mating. In contrast, trypanosome clones recovered from other flies showed that genotypes can be transmitted with fidelity. When a yellow hybrid clone expressing both red and green fluorescent protein genes was transmitted, the salivary glands contained a mixture of fluorescent-coloured trypanosomes, but only yellow and red clones were recovered. While loss of the GFP gene in the red clones could have resulted from gene conversion, some of these clones showed loss of heterozygosity and raised DNA contents as in the other single strain transmissions. Our observations suggest

  5. In Vitro Trypanocidal Activity of Antibodies to Bacterially Ex­pressed Trypanosoma brucei Tubulin

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    GW Lubega

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Background: There are only four drugs for treating African trypanosomiasis, a devastating disease in sub-Saharan Africa. With slow discovery of better drugs, vaccination is viewed as the best method of control. We previously showed that antibodies to native Trypanosoma brucei brucei tubulin inhibit the growth of trypanosomes in culture. Here, we aimed to determine the effect of antibodies to bacte­rially expressed trypanosome tubulin on T. brucei brucei growth. Methods: T. brucei brucei alpha and beta tubulin genes were individually expressed in Escherichia coli under the tryptophan promoter. Monoclonal tubulin antibodies reacted specifically with the ex­pressed tubulins with no cross-reaction with the opposite tubulin. Rabbits were immunized with 450μg each of the concentrated recombinant tubulin, and production of antibodies assessed by ELISA and Western blotting. The effect of polyclonal antibodies on trypanosome growth was deter­mined by culturing bloodstream T. brucei brucei in up to 25% of antisera. Results: Low antisera dilutions (25% from the immunized rabbits inhibited trypanosome growth. The most cytotoxic antisera were from one rabbit immunized with a mixture of both alpha and beta tubulins. However, the result was not reproduced in other rabbits and there was no apparent effect on growth at higher antisera dilutions. Conclusion: Antibodies to bacterially expressed trypanosome tubulin are not effective at killing cul­tured bloodstream trypanosomes.

  6. Biosynthesis and uptake of thiamine (vitamin B1) in bloodstream form Trypanosoma brucei brucei and interference of the vitamin with melarsen oxide activity.

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    Stoffel, Sabine A; Rodenko, Boris; Schweingruber, Anne-Marie; Mäser, Pascal; de Koning, Harry P; Schweingruber, M Ernst

    2006-02-01

    Bloodstream forms of Trypanosoma brucei brucei were cultivated in the presence and absence of thiamine (vitamin B1) and pyridoxine (vitamin B6). The vitamins do not change growth behaviour, indicating that Trypanosoma brucei is prototrophic for the two vitamins even though in silico no bona-fide thiamine-biosynthetic genes could be identified in the T. brucei genome. Intracellularly, thiamine is mainly present in its diphosphate form. We were unable to detect significant uptake of [3H]thiamine and structural thiamine analogues such as pyrithiamine, oxithiamine and amprolium were not toxic for the bloodstream forms of T. brucei, indicating that the organism does not have an efficient uptake system for thiamine and its analogues. We have previously shown that, in the fission yeast Saccharomyces pombe, the toxicity of melarsen oxide, the pharmacologically active derivative of the frontline sleeping sickness drug melarsoprol, is abolished by thiamine and the drug is taken up by a thiamine-regulated membrane protein which is responsible for the utilization of thiamine. We show here that thiamine also has weak effects on melarsen oxide-induced growth inhibition and lysis in T. brucei. These effects were consistent with a low affinity of thiamine for the P2 adenosine transporter that is responsible for uptake of melaminophenyl arsenicals in African trypanosomes.

  7. Optical trapping reveals propulsion forces, power generation and motility efficiency of the unicellular parasites Trypanosoma brucei brucei

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stellamanns, Eric; Uppaluri, Sravanti; Hochstetter, Axel; Heddergott, Niko; Engstler, Markus; Pfohl, Thomas

    2014-10-01

    Unicellular parasites have developed sophisticated swimming mechanisms to survive in a wide range of environments. Cell motility of African trypanosomes, parasites responsible for fatal illness in humans and animals, is crucial both in the insect vector and the mammalian host. Using millisecond-scale imaging in a microfluidics platform along with a custom made optical trap, we are able to confine single cells to study trypanosome motility. From the trapping characteristics of the cells, we determine the propulsion force generated by cells with a single flagellum as well as of dividing trypanosomes with two fully developed flagella. Estimates of the dissipative energy and the power generation of single cells obtained from the motility patterns of the trypanosomes within the optical trap indicate that specific motility characteristics, in addition to locomotion, may be required for antibody clearance. Introducing a steerable second optical trap we could further measure the force, which is generated at the flagellar tip. Differences in the cellular structure of the trypanosomes are correlated with the trapping and motility characteristics and in consequence with their propulsion force, dissipative energy and power generation.

  8. Rab23 is a flagellar protein in Trypanosoma brucei

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    Field Mark C

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Rab small GTPases are important mediators of membrane transport, and orthologues frequently retain similar locations and functions, even between highly divergent taxa. In metazoan organisms Rab23 is an important negative regulator of Sonic hedgehog signaling and is crucial for correct development and differentiation of cellular lineages by virtue of an involvement in ciliary recycling. Previously, we reported that Trypanosoma brucei Rab23 localized to the nuclear envelope 1, which is clearly inconsistent with the mammalian location and function. As T. brucei is unicellular the potential that Rab23 has no role in cell signaling was possible. Here we sought to further investigate the role(s of Rab23 in T. brucei to determine if Rab23 was an example of a Rab protein with divergent function in distinct taxa. Methods/major findings The taxonomic distribution of Rab23 was examined and compared with the presence of flagella/cilia in representative taxa. Despite evidence for considerable secondary loss, we found a clear correlation between a conventional flagellar structure and the presence of a Rab23 orthologue in the genome. By epitope-tagging, Rab23 was localized and found to be present at the flagellum throughout the cell cycle. However, RNAi knockdown did not result in a flagellar defect, suggesting that Rab23 is not required for construction or maintenance of the flagellum. Conclusions The location of Rab23 at the flagellum is conserved between mammals and trypanosomes and the Rab23 gene is restricted to flagellated organisms. These data may suggest the presence of a Rab23-mediated signaling mechanism in trypanosomes.

  9. Selective inhibition of 6-phosphogluconate dehydrogenase from Trypanosoma brucei

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertelli, Massimo; El-Bastawissy, Eman; Knaggs, Michael H.; Barrett, Michael P.; Hanau, Stefania; Gilbert, Ian H.

    2001-05-01

    A number of triphenylmethane derivatives have been screened against 6-phosphogluconate dehydrogenase from Trypanosoma brucei and sheep liver. Some of these compounds show good inhibition of the enzymes and also selectivity towards the parasite enzyme. Modelling was undertaken to dock the compounds into the active sites of both enzymes. Using a combination of DOCK 3.5 and FLEXIDOCK a correlation was obtained between docking score and both activity for the enzymes and selectivity. Visualisation of the docked structures of the inhibitors in the active sites of the enzymes yielded a possible explanation of the selectivity for the parasite enzyme.

  10. Minimum Information Loss Based Multi-kernel Learning for Flagellar Protein Recognition in Trypanosoma Brucei

    KAUST Repository

    Wang, Jim Jing-Yan

    2014-12-01

    Trypanosma brucei (T. Brucei) is an important pathogen agent of African trypanosomiasis. The flagellum is an essential and multifunctional organelle of T. Brucei, thus it is very important to recognize the flagellar proteins from T. Brucei proteins for the purposes of both biological research and drug design. In this paper, we investigate computationally recognizing flagellar proteins in T. Brucei by pattern recognition methods. It is argued that an optimal decision function can be obtained as the difference of probability functions of flagella protein and the non-flagellar protein for the purpose of flagella protein recognition. We propose to learn a multi-kernel classification function to approximate this optimal decision function, by minimizing the information loss of such approximation which is measured by the Kull back-Leibler (KL) divergence. An iterative multi-kernel classifier learning algorithm is developed to minimize the KL divergence for the problem of T. Brucei flagella protein recognition, experiments show its advantage over other T. Brucei flagellar protein recognition and multi-kernel learning methods. © 2014 IEEE.

  11. Complete coding sequence, sequence analysis and transmembrane topology modelling of Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense putative oligosaccharyl transferase (TbOST II).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baticados, Waren N; Inoue, Noboru; Sugimoto, Chihiro; Nagasawa, Hideyuki; Baticados, Abigail M

    2011-01-01

    The partial nucleotide sequence of putative Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense oligosaccharyl transferase gene was previously reported. Here, we describe the determination of its full-length nucleotide sequence by Inverse PCR (IPCR), subsequent biological sequence analysis and transmembrane topology modelling. The full-length DNA sequence has an Open Reading Frame (ORF) of 2406 bp and encodes a polypeptide of 801 amino acid residues. Protein and DNA sequence analyses revealed that homologues within the genome of other kinetoplastid and various origins exist. Protein topology analysis predicted that Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense putative oligosaccharyl transferase clone II (TbOST II) is a transmembrane protein with transmembrane helices in probably an N(cytosol)-C(cytosol) orientation. Data from the GenBank database assembly and sequence analyses in general clearly state that TbOST II is the STT3 subunit of OST in T.b. rhodesiense that necessitates further characterisation and functional studies with RNAi. TbOST II sequence had been deposited in the GenBank (accession number GU245937).

  12. Combinations of alkaloids affecting different molecular targets with the saponin digitonin can synergistically enhance trypanocidal activity against Trypanosoma brucei brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krstin, Sonja; Peixoto, Herbenya Silva; Wink, Michael

    2015-11-01

    The flagellate Trypanosoma brucei causes sleeping sickness in humans and nagana in animals. Only a few drugs are registered to treat trypanosomiasis, but those drugs show severe side effects. Also, because some pathogen strains have become resistant, new strategies are urgently needed to combat this parasitic disease. An underexplored possibility is the application of combinations of several trypanocidal agents, which may potentiate their trypanocidal activity in a synergistic fashion. In this study, the potential synergism of mutual combinations of bioactive alkaloids and alkaloids with a membrane-active steroidal saponin, digitonin, was explored with regard to their effect on T. b. brucei. Alkaloids were selected that affect different molecular targets: berberine and chelerythrine (intercalation of DNA), piperine (induction of apoptosis), vinblastine (inhibition of microtubule assembly), emetine (intercalation of DNA, inhibition of protein biosynthesis), homoharringtonine (inhibition of protein biosynthesis), and digitonin (membrane permeabilization and uptake facilitation of polar compounds). Most combinations resulted in an enhanced trypanocidal effect. The addition of digitonin significantly stimulated the activity of almost all alkaloids against trypanosomes. The strongest effect was measured in a combination of digitonin with vinblastine. The highest dose reduction indexes (DRI) were measured in the two-drug combination of digitonin or piperine with vinblastine, where the dose of vinblastine could be reduced 9.07-fold or 7.05-fold, respectively. The synergistic effects of mutual combinations of alkaloids and of alkaloids with digitonin present a new avenue to treat trypanosomiasis but one which needs to be corroborated in future animal experiments.

  13. Antitrypanosomal effect of methanolic extract of Zingiber officinale (ginger on Trypanosoma brucei brucei-infected Wistar mice

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    P. I. Kobo

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Aim: The study was carried out to determine the in vivo antitrypanosomal effect of methanolic extract of Zingiber officinale (ginger in Trypanosoma brucei brucei-infected mice. Materials and Methods: Twenty-five mice were randomly allocated into five groups of five animals each. Group I and II were given Tween 80 (1 ml/kg and diminazene aceturate (3.5 mg/kg to serve as untreated and treated controls, respectively. Groups III-V received the extract at 200, 400 and 800 mg/kg body weight, respectively. All treatments were given for 6 consecutive days and through the oral route. The mean body weight, mean survival period and daily level of parasitaemia were evaluated. Results: Acute toxicity showed the extract to be relatively safe. There was an insignificant increase in body weight and survival rate of mice treated with the extract. The level of parasitaemia in the extract treated groups was decreased. Conclusion: This study shows the in vivo potential of methanolic extract of Z. officinale in the treatment of trypanosomiasis.

  14. Cofactor-independent phosphoglycerate mutase is an essential gene in procyclic form Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Djikeng, Appolinaire; Raverdy, Sylvine; Foster, Jeremy; Bartholomeu, Daniella; Zhang, Yinhua; El-Sayed, Najib M; Carlow, Clotilde

    2007-03-01

    Glycolysis and gluconeogenesis are, in part, driven by the interconversion of 3- and 2-phosphoglycerate (3-PG and 2-PG) which is performed by phosphoglycerate mutases (PGAMs) which can be cofactor dependant (dPGAM) or cofactor independent (iPGAM). The African trypanosome, Trypanosoma brucei, possesses the iPGAM form which is thought to play an important role in glycolysis. Here, we report on the use of RNA interference to down-regulate the T. brucei iPGAM in procyclic form T. brucei and evaluation of the resulting phenotype. We first demonstrated biochemically that depletion of the steady state levels of iPGM mRNA correlates with a marked reduction of enzyme activity. We further show that iPGAM is required for cell growth in procyclic T. brucei.

  15. Mosaic VSGs and the scale of Trypanosoma brucei antigenic variation.

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    James P J Hall

    Full Text Available A main determinant of prolonged Trypanosoma brucei infection and transmission and success of the parasite is the interplay between host acquired immunity and antigenic variation of the parasite variant surface glycoprotein (VSG coat. About 0.1% of trypanosome divisions produce a switch to a different VSG through differential expression of an archive of hundreds of silent VSG genes and pseudogenes, but the patterns and extent of the trypanosome diversity phenotype, particularly in chronic infection, are unclear. We applied longitudinal VSG cDNA sequencing to estimate variant richness and test whether pseudogenes contribute to antigenic variation. We show that individual growth peaks can contain at least 15 distinct variants, are estimated computationally to comprise many more, and that antigenically distinct 'mosaic' VSGs arise from segmental gene conversion between donor VSG genes or pseudogenes. The potential for trypanosome antigenic variation is probably much greater than VSG archive size; mosaic VSGs are core to antigenic variation and chronic infection.

  16. Pathogenesis of anemia in Trypanosoma brucei-infected mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amole, B O; Clarkson, A B; Shear, H L

    1982-01-01

    The pathogenesis of anemia was studied in trypanosome-infected mice. A strain of Trypanosoma brucei, TREU 667, was used which first produces an acute phase marked by waves of parasitemia. Erythrocytes from infected animals were coated with immunoglobulin M during or just before the waves of anemia and parasitological crises. Erythrocytes from normal animals could be sensitized with "precrisis" sera presumably containing antigen and antibody. These data suggest that anemia during the acute phase is due to sensitization of erythrocytes with immunoglobulin M-antigen complexes. The anemia is partially compensated by a strong erythropoietic response. The acute phase is followed by a chronic phase marked by a constant high parasitemia and immunosuppression. The less marked anemia occurring during this latter phase is due to hemodilution and perhaps a low but significant immune response to the parasites, which causes continuing erythrocyte sensitization by immunoglobulin M-antigen complexes. PMID:7201455

  17. Dynamic modelling under uncertainty: the case of Trypanosoma brucei energy metabolism.

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    Fiona Achcar

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Kinetic models of metabolism require detailed knowledge of kinetic parameters. However, due to measurement errors or lack of data this knowledge is often uncertain. The model of glycolysis in the parasitic protozoan Trypanosoma brucei is a particularly well analysed example of a quantitative metabolic model, but so far it has been studied with a fixed set of parameters only. Here we evaluate the effect of parameter uncertainty. In order to define probability distributions for each parameter, information about the experimental sources and confidence intervals for all parameters were collected. We created a wiki-based website dedicated to the detailed documentation of this information: the SilicoTryp wiki (http://silicotryp.ibls.gla.ac.uk/wiki/Glycolysis. Using information collected in the wiki, we then assigned probability distributions to all parameters of the model. This allowed us to sample sets of alternative models, accurately representing our degree of uncertainty. Some properties of the model, such as the repartition of the glycolytic flux between the glycerol and pyruvate producing branches, are robust to these uncertainties. However, our analysis also allowed us to identify fragilities of the model leading to the accumulation of 3-phosphoglycerate and/or pyruvate. The analysis of the control coefficients revealed the importance of taking into account the uncertainties about the parameters, as the ranking of the reactions can be greatly affected. This work will now form the basis for a comprehensive Bayesian analysis and extension of the model considering alternative topologies.

  18. Identification and characterization of an unusual class I myosin involved in vesicle traffic in Trypanosoma brucei.

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    Diana Spitznagel

    Full Text Available Myosins are a multimember family of motor proteins with diverse functions in eukaryotic cells. African trypanosomes possess only two candidate myosins and thus represent a useful system for functional analysis of these motors. One of these candidates is an unusual class I myosin (TbMyo1 that is expressed at similar levels but organized differently during the life cycle of Trypanosoma brucei. This myosin localizes to the polarized endocytic pathway in bloodstream forms of the parasite. This organization is actin dependent. Knock down of TbMyo1 results in a significant reduction in endocytic activity, a cessation in cell division and eventually cell death. A striking morphological feature in these cells is an enlargement of the flagellar pocket, which is consistent with an imbalance in traffic to and from the surface. In contrast TbMyo1 is distributed throughout procyclic forms of the tsetse vector and a loss of approximately 90% of the protein has no obvious effects on growth or morphology. These results reveal a life cycle stage specific requirement for this myosin in essential endocytic traffic and represent the first description of the involvement of a motor protein in vesicle traffic in these parasites.

  19. Identification and characterization of an unusual class I myosin involved in vesicle traffic in Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spitznagel, Diana; O'Rourke, John F; Leddy, Neal; Hanrahan, Orla; Nolan, Derek P

    2010-01-01

    Myosins are a multimember family of motor proteins with diverse functions in eukaryotic cells. African trypanosomes possess only two candidate myosins and thus represent a useful system for functional analysis of these motors. One of these candidates is an unusual class I myosin (TbMyo1) that is expressed at similar levels but organized differently during the life cycle of Trypanosoma brucei. This myosin localizes to the polarized endocytic pathway in bloodstream forms of the parasite. This organization is actin dependent. Knock down of TbMyo1 results in a significant reduction in endocytic activity, a cessation in cell division and eventually cell death. A striking morphological feature in these cells is an enlargement of the flagellar pocket, which is consistent with an imbalance in traffic to and from the surface. In contrast TbMyo1 is distributed throughout procyclic forms of the tsetse vector and a loss of approximately 90% of the protein has no obvious effects on growth or morphology. These results reveal a life cycle stage specific requirement for this myosin in essential endocytic traffic and represent the first description of the involvement of a motor protein in vesicle traffic in these parasites.

  20. Melarsoprol- and pentamidine-resistant Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense populations and their cross-resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernhard, Sonja C; Nerima, Barbara; Mäser, Pascal; Brun, Reto

    2007-11-01

    Resistance to melarsoprol and pentamidine was induced in bloodstream-form Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense STIB 900 in vitro, and drug sensitivity was determined for melarsoprol, pentamidine and furamidine. The resistant populations were also inoculated into immunosuppressed mice to verify infectivity and to monitor whether rodent passage selects for clones with altered drug sensitivity. After proliferation in the mouse, trypanosomes were isolated and their IC(50) values to the three drugs were determined. To assess the stability of drug-induced resistance, drug pressure was ceased for 2 months and the drug sensitivity was determined again. Resistance was stable, with a few exceptions that are discussed. Drug IC(50)s indicated cross-resistance among all drugs, but to varying extents: resistance of the melarsoprol-selected and pentamidine-selected trypanosomes to pentamidine was the same, but the pentamidine-selected trypanosome population showed lower resistance to melarsoprol than the melarsoprol-selected trypanosomes. Interestingly, both resistant populations revealed the same intermediate cross-resistance to furamidine. Resistant trypanosome populations were characterised by molecular means, referring to the status of the TbAT1 gene. The melarsoprol-selected population apparently had lost TbAT1, whereas in the pentamidine-selected trypanosome population it was still present.

  1. MIF Contributes to Trypanosoma brucei Associated Immunopathogenicity Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stijlemans, Benoît; Leng, Lin; Brys, Lea; Sparkes, Amanda; Vansintjan, Liese; Caljon, Guy; Raes, Geert; Van Den Abbeele, Jan; Van Ginderachter, Jo A.; Beschin, Alain

    2014-01-01

    African trypanosomiasis is a chronic debilitating disease affecting the health and economic well-being of many people in developing countries. The pathogenicity associated with this disease involves a persistent inflammatory response, whereby M1-type myeloid cells, including Ly6Chigh inflammatory monocytes, are centrally implicated. A comparative gene analysis between trypanosusceptible and trypanotolerant animals identified MIF (macrophage migrating inhibitory factor) as an important pathogenic candidate molecule. Using MIF-deficient mice and anti-MIF antibody treated mice, we show that MIF mediates the pathogenic inflammatory immune response and increases the recruitment of inflammatory monocytes and neutrophils to contribute to liver injury in Trypanosoma brucei infected mice. Moreover, neutrophil-derived MIF contributed more significantly than monocyte-derived MIF to increased pathogenic liver TNF production and liver injury during trypanosome infection. MIF deficient animals also featured limited anemia, coinciding with increased iron bio-availability, improved erythropoiesis and reduced RBC clearance during the chronic phase of infection. Our data suggest that MIF promotes the most prominent pathological features of experimental trypanosome infections (i.e. anemia and liver injury), and prompt considering MIF as a novel target for treatment of trypanosomiasis-associated immunopathogenicity. PMID:25255103

  2. MIF contributes to Trypanosoma brucei associated immunopathogenicity development.

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    Benoît Stijlemans

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available African trypanosomiasis is a chronic debilitating disease affecting the health and economic well-being of many people in developing countries. The pathogenicity associated with this disease involves a persistent inflammatory response, whereby M1-type myeloid cells, including Ly6C(high inflammatory monocytes, are centrally implicated. A comparative gene analysis between trypanosusceptible and trypanotolerant animals identified MIF (macrophage migrating inhibitory factor as an important pathogenic candidate molecule. Using MIF-deficient mice and anti-MIF antibody treated mice, we show that MIF mediates the pathogenic inflammatory immune response and increases the recruitment of inflammatory monocytes and neutrophils to contribute to liver injury in Trypanosoma brucei infected mice. Moreover, neutrophil-derived MIF contributed more significantly than monocyte-derived MIF to increased pathogenic liver TNF production and liver injury during trypanosome infection. MIF deficient animals also featured limited anemia, coinciding with increased iron bio-availability, improved erythropoiesis and reduced RBC clearance during the chronic phase of infection. Our data suggest that MIF promotes the most prominent pathological features of experimental trypanosome infections (i.e. anemia and liver injury, and prompt considering MIF as a novel target for treatment of trypanosomiasis-associated immunopathogenicity.

  3. Exosome secretion affects social motility in Trypanosoma brucei

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaked, Hadassa; Arvatz, Gil; Tkacz, Itai Dov; Binder, Lior; Waldman Ben-Asher, Hiba; Okalang, Uthman; Chikne, Vaibhav; Cohen-Chalamish, Smadar; Michaeli, Shulamit

    2017-01-01

    Extracellular vesicles (EV) secreted by pathogens function in a variety of biological processes. Here, we demonstrate that in the protozoan parasite Trypanosoma brucei, exosome secretion is induced by stress that affects trans-splicing. Following perturbations in biogenesis of spliced leader RNA, which donates its spliced leader (SL) exon to all mRNAs, or after heat-shock, the SL RNA is exported to the cytoplasm and forms distinct granules, which are then secreted by exosomes. The exosomes are formed in multivesicular bodies (MVB) utilizing the endosomal sorting complexes required for transport (ESCRT), through a mechanism similar to microRNA secretion in mammalian cells. Silencing of the ESCRT factor, Vps36, compromised exosome secretion but not the secretion of vesicles derived from nanotubes. The exosomes enter recipient trypanosome cells. Time-lapse microscopy demonstrated that cells secreting exosomes or purified intact exosomes affect social motility (SoMo). This study demonstrates that exosomes are delivered to trypanosome cells and can change their migration. Exosomes are used to transmit stress signals for communication between parasites. PMID:28257521

  4. Proteins associated with SF3a60 in T. brucei.

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    Benson Nyambega

    Full Text Available Trypanosoma brucei relies on Spliced leader trans splicing to generate functional messenger RNAs. Trans splicing joins the specialized SL exon from the SL RNA to pre-mRNAs and is mediated by the trans-spliceosome, which is made up of small nuclear ribonucleoprotein particles and non-snRNP factors. Although the trans spliceosome is essential for trypanosomatid gene expression, not all spliceosomal protein factors are known and of these, only a few are completely characterized. In this study, we have characterized the trypanosome Splicing Factor, SF3a60, the only currently annotated SF3a component. As expected, epitope-tagged SF3a60 localizes in the trypanosome nucleus. SF3a60 is essential for cell viability but its depletion seem to have no detectable effect on trans-splicing. In addition, we used SF3a60 as bait in a Yeast-2-hybrid system screen and identified its interacting protein factors. The interactions with SF3a120, SF3a66 and SAP130 were confirmed by tandem affinity purification and mass spectrometry.

  5. Proteomics and the Trypanosoma brucei cytoskeleton: advances and opportunities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Portman, Neil; Gull, Keith

    2012-08-01

    Trypanosoma brucei is the etiological agent of devastating parasitic disease in humans and livestock in sub-saharan Africa. The pathogenicity and growth of the parasite are intimately linked to its shape and form. This is in turn derived from a highly ordered microtubule cytoskeleton that forms a tightly arrayed cage directly beneath the pellicular membrane and numerous other cytoskeletal structures such as the flagellum. The parasite undergoes extreme changes in cellular morphology during its life cycle and cell cycles which require a high level of integration and coordination of cytoskeletal processes. In this review we will discuss the role that proteomics techniques have had in advancing our understanding of the molecular composition of the cytoskeleton and its functions. We then consider future opportunities for the application of these techniques in terms of addressing some of the unanswered questions of trypanosome cytoskeletal cell biology with particular focus on the differences in the composition and organisation of the cytoskeleton through the trypanosome life-cycle.

  6. 3-(Oxazolo[4,5-b]pyridin-2-yl)anilides as a novel class of potent inhibitors for the kinetoplastid Trypanosoma brucei, the causative agent for human African trypanosomiasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrins, Lori; Rahmani, Raphaël; Sykes, Melissa L; Jones, Amy J; Avery, Vicky M; Teston, Eliott; Almohaywi, Basmah; Yin, JieXiang; Smith, Jason; Hyland, Chris; White, Karen L; Ryan, Eileen; Campbell, Michael; Charman, Susan A; Kaiser, Marcel; Baell, Jonathan B

    2013-08-01

    A whole organism high-throughput screen of approximately 87,000 compounds against Trypanosoma brucei brucei led to the recent discovery of several novel compound classes with low micromolar activity against this organism and without appreciable cytotoxicity to mammalian cells. Herein we report a structure-activity relationship (SAR) investigation around one of these hit classes, the 3-(oxazolo[4,5-b]pyridin-2-yl)anilides. Sharp SAR is revealed, with our most active compound (5) exhibiting an IC₅₀ of 91 nM against the human pathogenic strain T.b. rhodesiense and being more than 700 times less toxic towards the L6 mammalian cell line. Physicochemical properties are attractive for many compounds in this series. For the most potent representatives, we show that solubility and metabolic stability are key parameters to target during future optimisation.

  7. Crystal Structures of TbCatB and rhodesain, potential chemotherapeutic targets and major cysteine proteases of Trypanosoma brucei.

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    Iain D Kerr

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Trypanosoma brucei is the etiological agent of Human African Trypanosomiasis, an endemic parasitic disease of sub-Saharan Africa. TbCatB and rhodesain are the sole Clan CA papain-like cysteine proteases produced by the parasite during infection of the mammalian host and are implicated in the progression of disease. Of considerable interest is the exploration of these two enzymes as targets for cysteine protease inhibitors that are effective against T. brucei. METHODS AND FINDINGS: We have determined, by X-ray crystallography, the first reported structure of TbCatB in complex with the cathepsin B selective inhibitor CA074. In addition we report the structure of rhodesain in complex with the vinyl-sulfone K11002. CONCLUSIONS: The mature domain of our TbCat*CA074 structure contains unique features for a cathepsin B-like enzyme including an elongated N-terminus extending 16 residues past the predicted maturation cleavage site. N-terminal Edman sequencing reveals an even longer extension than is observed amongst the ordered portions of the crystal structure. The TbCat*CA074 structure confirms that the occluding loop, which is an essential part of the substrate-binding site, creates a larger prime side pocket in the active site cleft than is found in mammalian cathepsin B-small molecule structures. Our data further highlight enhanced flexibility in the occluding loop main chain and structural deviations from mammalian cathepsin B enzymes that may affect activity and inhibitor design. Comparisons with the rhodesain*K11002 structure highlight key differences that may impact the design of cysteine protease inhibitors as anti-trypanosomal drugs.

  8. A trans-spliced telomerase RNA dictates telomere synthesis in Trypanosoma brucei

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Ranjodh Sandhu; Samantha Sanford; Shrabani Basu; MinA Park; Unnati M Pandya; Bibo Li; Kausik Chakrabarti

    2013-01-01

    Telomerase is a ribonucleoprotein enzyme typically required for sustained cell proliferation.Although both telomerase activity and the telomerase catalytic protein component,TbTERT,have been identified in the eukaryotic pathogen Trypanosoma brucei,the RNA molecule that dictates telomere synthesis remains unknown.Here,we identify the RNA component of Trypanosoma brucei telomerase,TbTR,and provide phylogenetic and in vivo evidence for TbTR's native folding and activity.We show that TbTR is processed through trans-splicing,and is a capped transcript that interacts and copurifies with TbTERT in vivo.Deletion of TbTR caused progressive shortening of telomeres at a rate of 3-5 bp/population doubling (PD),which can be rescued by ectopic expression of a wild-type allele of TbTR in an apparent dose-dependent manner.Remarkably,introduction of mutations in the TbTR template domain resulted in corresponding mutant telomere sequences,demonstrating that telomere synthesis in T.brucei is dependent on TbTR.We also propose a secondary structure model for TbTR based on phylogenetic analysis and chemical probing experiments,thus defining TbTR domains that may have important functional implications in telomere synthesis.Identification and characterization of TbTR not only provide important insights into T.brucei telomere functions,which have been shown to play important roles in T.brucei pathogenesis,but also offer T.brucei as an attractive model system for studying telomerase biology in pathogenic protozoa and for comparative analysis of telomerase function with higher eukaryotes.

  9. Stearoyl-CoA desaturase is an essential enzyme for the parasitic protist Trypanosoma brucei

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Alloatti, Andres [Instituto de Biologia Molecular y Celular de Rosario (IBR), CONICET, Facultad de Ciencias Bioquimicas y Farmaceuticas, Universidad Nacional de Rosario, Santa Fe (Argentina); Gupta, Shreedhara; Gualdron-Lopez, Melisa; Nguewa, Paul A. [Research Unit for Tropical Diseases, de Duve Institute and Laboratory of Biochemistry, Universite Catholique de Louvain, Brussels (Belgium); Altabe, Silvia G. [Instituto de Biologia Molecular y Celular de Rosario (IBR), CONICET, Facultad de Ciencias Bioquimicas y Farmaceuticas, Universidad Nacional de Rosario, Santa Fe (Argentina); Deumer, Gladys; Wallemacq, Pierre [Department of Clinical Chemistry, Cliniques Universitaires Saint-Luc, LTAP, Universite Catholique de Louvain, Brussels (Belgium); Michels, Paul A.M. [Research Unit for Tropical Diseases, de Duve Institute and Laboratory of Biochemistry, Universite Catholique de Louvain, Brussels (Belgium); Uttaro, Antonio D., E-mail: toniuttaro@yahoo.com.ar [Instituto de Biologia Molecular y Celular de Rosario (IBR), CONICET, Facultad de Ciencias Bioquimicas y Farmaceuticas, Universidad Nacional de Rosario, Santa Fe (Argentina)

    2011-08-26

    Highlights: {yields} Inhibiting {Delta}9 desaturase drastically changes T. brucei's fatty-acid composition. {yields} Isoxyl specifically inhibits the {Delta}9 desaturase causing a growth arrest. {yields} RNA interference of desaturase expression causes a similar effect. {yields} Feeding T. brucei-infected mice with Isoxyl decreases the parasitemia. {yields} 70% of Isoxyl-treated mice survived the trypanosome infection. -- Abstract: Trypanosoma brucei, the etiologic agent of sleeping sickness, is exposed to important changes in nutrients and temperature during its life cycle. To adapt to these changes, the fluidity of its membranes plays a crucial role. This fluidity, mediated by the fatty-acid composition, is regulated by enzymes named desaturases. We have previously shown that the oleoyl desaturase is essential for Trypanosoma cruzi and T. brucei. In this work, we present experimental support for the relevance of stearoyl-CoA desaturase (SCD) for T. brucei's survival, in both its insect or procyclic-form (PCF) and bloodstream-form (BSF) stages. We evaluated this essentiality in two different ways: by generating a SCD knocked-down parasite line using RNA interference, and by chemical inhibition of the enzyme with two compounds, Isoxyl and a thiastearate with the sulfur atom at position 10 (10-TS). The effective concentration for 50% growth inhibition (EC{sub 50}) of PCF was 1.0 {+-} 0.2 {mu}M for Isoxyl and 5 {+-} 2 {mu}M for 10-TS, whereas BSF appeared more susceptible with EC{sub 50} values 0.10 {+-} 0.03 {mu}M (Isoxyl) and 1.0 {+-} 0.6 {mu}M (10-TS). RNA interference showed to be deleterious for both stages of the parasite. In addition, T. brucei-infected mice were fed with Isoxyl, causing a reduction of the parasitemia and an increase of the rodents' survival.

  10. 3D Architecture of the Trypanosoma brucei Flagella Connector, a Mobile Transmembrane Junction.

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    Johanna L Höög

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Cellular junctions are crucial for the formation of multicellular organisms, where they anchor cells to each other and/or supportive tissue and enable cell-to-cell communication. Some unicellular organisms, such as the parasitic protist Trypanosoma brucei, also have complex cellular junctions. The flagella connector (FC is a three-layered transmembrane junction that moves with the growing tip of a new flagellum and attaches it to the side of the old flagellum. The FC moves via an unknown molecular mechanism, independent of new flagellum growth. Here we describe the detailed 3D architecture of the FC suggesting explanations for how it functions and its mechanism of motility.We have used a combination of electron tomography and cryo-electron tomography to reveal the 3D architecture of the FC. Cryo-electron tomography revealed layers of repetitive filamentous electron densities between the two flagella in the interstitial zone. Though the FC does not change in length and width during the growth of the new flagellum, the interstitial zone thickness decreases as the FC matures. This investigation also shows interactions between the FC layers and the axonemes of the new and old flagellum, sufficiently strong to displace the axoneme in the old flagellum. We describe a novel filament, the flagella connector fibre, found between the FC and the axoneme in the old flagellum.The FC is similar to other cellular junctions in that filamentous proteins bridge the extracellular space and are anchored to underlying cytoskeletal structures; however, it is built between different portions of the same cell and is unique because of its intrinsic motility. The detailed description of its structure will be an important tool to use in attributing structure / function relationships as its molecular components are discovered in the future. The FC is involved in the inheritance of cell shape, which is important for the life cycle of this human parasite.

  11. Human and animal Trypanosomes in Cote d'Ivoire form a single breeding population.

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    Paul Capewell

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Trypanosoma brucei is the causative agent of African Sleeping Sickness in humans and contributes to the related veterinary disease, Nagana. T. brucei is segregated into three subspecies based on host specificity, geography and pathology. T. b. brucei is limited to animals (excluding some primates throughout sub-Saharan Africa and is non-infective to humans due to trypanolytic factors found in human serum. T. b. gambiense and T. b. rhodesiense are human infective sub-species. T. b. gambiense is the more prevalent human, causing over 97% of human cases. Study of T. b. gambiense is complicated in that there are two distinct groups delineated by genetics and phenotype. The relationships between the two groups and local T. b. brucei are unclear and may have a bearing on the evolution of the human infectivity traits. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: A collection of sympatric T. brucei isolates from Côte d'Ivoire, consisting of T. b. brucei and both groups of T. b. gambiense have previously been categorized by isoenzymes, RFLPs and Blood Incubation Infectivity Tests. These samples were further characterized using the group 1 specific marker, TgSGP, and seven microsatellites. The relationships between the T. b. brucei and T. b. gambiense isolates were determined using principal components analysis, neighbor-joining phylogenetics, STRUCTURE, FST, Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium and linkage disequilibrium. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Group 1 T. b. gambiense form a clonal genetic group, distinct from group 2 and T. b. brucei, whereas group 2 T. b. gambiense are genetically indistinguishable from local T. b. brucei. There is strong evidence for mating within and between group 2 T. b. gambiense and T. b. brucei. We found no evidence to support the hypothesis that group 2 T. b. gambiense are hybrids of group 1 and T. b. brucei, suggesting that human infectivity has evolved independently in groups 1 and 2 T. b. gambiense.

  12. Genome-wide dissection of the quorum sensing signalling pathway in Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mony, Binny M; MacGregor, Paula; Ivens, Alasdair; Rojas, Federico; Cowton, Andrew; Young, Julie; Horn, David; Matthews, Keith

    2014-01-30

    The protozoan parasites Trypanosoma brucei spp. cause important human and livestock diseases in sub-Saharan Africa. In mammalian blood, two developmental forms of the parasite exist: proliferative 'slender' forms and arrested 'stumpy' forms that are responsible for transmission to tsetse flies. The slender to stumpy differentiation is a density-dependent response that resembles quorum sensing in microbial systems and is crucial for the parasite life cycle, ensuring both infection chronicity and disease transmission. This response is triggered by an elusive 'stumpy induction factor' (SIF) whose intracellular signalling pathway is also uncharacterized. Laboratory-adapted (monomorphic) trypanosome strains respond inefficiently to SIF but can generate forms with stumpy characteristics when exposed to cell-permeable cAMP and AMP analogues. Exploiting this, we have used a genome-wide RNA interference library screen to identify the signalling components driving stumpy formation. In separate screens, monomorphic parasites were exposed to 8-(4-chlorophenylthio)-cAMP (pCPT-cAMP) or 8-pCPT-2'-O-methyl-5'-AMP to select cells that were unresponsive to these signals and hence remained proliferative. Genome-wide Ion Torrent based RNAi target sequencing identified cohorts of genes implicated in each step of the signalling pathway, from purine metabolism, through signal transducers (kinases, phosphatases) to gene expression regulators. Genes at each step were independently validated in cells naturally capable of stumpy formation, confirming their role in density sensing in vivo. The putative RNA-binding protein, RBP7, was required for normal quorum sensing and promoted cell-cycle arrest and transmission competence when overexpressed. This study reveals that quorum sensing signalling in trypanosomes shares similarities to fundamental quiescence pathways in eukaryotic cells, its components providing targets for quorum-sensing interference-based therapeutics.

  13. Isolation and characterization of kinetoplast DNA from the bloodstream form of Trypanosoma brucei.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    A.H. Fairlamb; P.O. Weislogel; J.H.J. Hoeijmakers (Jan); P. Borst (Piet)

    1978-01-01

    textabstractWe have used restriction endonucleases PstI, EcoRI, HapII, HhaI, and S1 nuclease to demonstrate the presence of a large complex component, the maxi-circle, in addition to the major mini-circle component in kinetoplast DNA (kDNA) networks of Trypanosoma brucei (East African Trypanosomiasi

  14. Procyclic Trypanosoma brucei do not use Krebs cycle activity for energy generation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Weelden, van S.W.H.; Fast, B.; Vogt, A.; Meer, van der P.; Saas, J.; Hellemond, van J.J.; Tielens, A.G.M.; Boshart, M.

    2003-01-01

    The importance of a functional Krebs cycle for energy generation in the procyclic stage of Trypanosoma brucei was investigated under physiological conditions during logarithmic phase growth of a pleomorphic parasite strain. Wild type procyclic cells and mutants with targeted deletion of the gene cod

  15. Dynamic Modelling under Uncertainty : The Case of Trypanosoma brucei Energy Metabolism

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Achcar, Fiona; Kerkhoven, Eduard J.; Bakker, Barbara M.; Barrett, Michael P.; Breitling, Rainer; Papin, Jason A.

    2012-01-01

    Kinetic models of metabolism require detailed knowledge of kinetic parameters. However, due to measurement errors or lack of data this knowledge is often uncertain. The model of glycolysis in the parasitic protozoan Trypanosoma brucei is a particularly well analysed example of a quantitative metabol

  16. Handling Uncertainty in Dynamic Models : The Pentose Phosphate Pathway in Trypanosoma brucei

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kerkhoven, Eduard J.; Achcar, Fiona; Alibu, Vincent P.; Burchmore, Richard J.; Gilbert, Ian H.; Trybilo, Maciej; Driessen, Nicole N.; Gilbert, David; Breitling, Rainer; Bakker, Barbara M.; Barrett, Michael P.

    2013-01-01

    Dynamic models of metabolism can be useful in identifying potential drug targets, especially in unicellular organisms. A model of glycolysis in the causative agent of human African trypanosomiasis, Trypanosoma brucei, has already shown the utility of this approach. Here we add the pentose phosphate

  17. Involvement of lysosomes in the uptake of macromolecular material by bloodstream forms of Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Opperdoes, F R; Van Roy, J

    1982-09-01

    To investigate whether the lysosomes of Trypanosoma brucei are capable of uptake of macromolecules after internalization by the cell, we used Triton WR-1339, a non-digestible macromolecular compound, which is known to cause a marked decrease in the density of hepatic lysosomes due to massive intralysosomal storage. Intraperitoneal administration of 0.4 g/kg Triton WR-1339 to rats infected with T. brucei led to the development of a large vacuole in the trypanosomes between nucleus and kinetoplast within 22 h. Higher doses (2 g/kg) led to the disappearance of the trypanosomes from the blood and resulted in permanent cures (greater than 100 days). Lysosomes isolated from the trypanosomes of animals treated with a sub-curative dose showed a decrease in equilibrium density of 0.03 g/cm3 in sucrose gradients. These lysosomes were partly damaged as evidenced by a reduction in latency and an increase in the non-sedimentable part of lysosomal enzymes. We conclude that acid proteinase and alpha-mannosidase-containing organelles of T. brucei take up exogenous macromolecules and must therefore be considered as true lysosomes and that Triton WR-1339 acts in T. brucei as a true lysosomotropic drug. Its trypanocidal action probably results from an interference with lysosomal function.

  18. Novel molecular mechanism for targeting the parasite Trypanosoma brucei with snake venom toxins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Martos Esteban, Andrea; Laustsen, Andreas Hougaard; Carrington, Mark

    Trypanosoma brucei is a parasitic protozoan species capable to infecting insect vectors whose bite further produces African sleeping sickness inhuman beings. During parasites’extracellular lives in the mammalian host, its outer coat, mainly composedof Variable surface glycoproteins (VSGs)[2], und...

  19. Telomere length affects the frequency and mechanism of antigenic variation in Trypanosoma brucei.

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    Galadriel A Hovel-Miner

    Full Text Available Trypanosoma brucei is a master of antigenic variation and immune response evasion. Utilizing a genomic repertoire of more than 1000 Variant Surface Glycoprotein-encoding genes (VSGs, T. brucei can change its protein coat by "switching" from the expression of one VSG to another. Each active VSG is monoallelically expressed from only one of approximately 15 subtelomeric sites. Switching VSG expression occurs by three predominant mechanisms, arguably the most significant of which is the non-reciprocal exchange of VSG containing DNA by duplicative gene conversion (GC. How T. brucei orchestrates its complex switching mechanisms remains to be elucidated. Recent work has demonstrated that an exogenous DNA break in the active site could initiate a GC based switch, yet the source of the switch-initiating DNA lesion under natural conditions is still unknown. Here we investigated the hypothesis that telomere length directly affects VSG switching. We demonstrate that telomerase deficient strains with short telomeres switch more frequently than genetically identical strains with long telomeres and that, when the telomere is short, switching preferentially occurs by GC. Our data supports the hypothesis that a short telomere at the active VSG expression site results in an increase in subtelomeric DNA breaks, which can initiate GC based switching. In addition to their significance for T. brucei and telomere biology, the findings presented here have implications for the many diverse pathogens that organize their antigenic genes in subtelomeric regions.

  20. Nucleic acid sequence-based amplification with oligochromatography for detection of Trypanosoma brucei in clinical samples

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    C.M. Mugasa; T. Laurent; G.J. Schoone; P.A. Kager; G.W. Lubega; H.D.F.H. Schallig

    2009-01-01

    Molecular tools, such as real-time nucleic acid sequence-based amplification (NASBA) and PCR, have been developed to detect Trypanosoma brucei parasites in blood for the diagnosis of human African trypanosomiasis (HAT). Despite good sensitivity, these techniques are not implemented in HAT control pr

  1. Ribose 5-phosphate isomerase B knockdown compromises Trypanosoma brucei bloodstream form infectivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loureiro, Inês; Faria, Joana; Clayton, Christine; Macedo-Ribeiro, Sandra; Santarém, Nuno; Roy, Nilanjan; Cordeiro-da-Siva, Anabela; Tavares, Joana

    2015-01-01

    Ribose 5-phosphate isomerase is an enzyme involved in the non-oxidative branch of the pentose phosphate pathway, and catalyzes the inter-conversion of D-ribose 5-phosphate and D-ribulose 5-phosphate. Trypanosomatids, including the agent of African sleeping sickness namely Trypanosoma brucei, have a type B ribose-5-phosphate isomerase. This enzyme is absent from humans, which have a structurally unrelated ribose 5-phosphate isomerase type A, and therefore has been proposed as an attractive drug target waiting further characterization. In this study, Trypanosoma brucei ribose 5-phosphate isomerase B showed in vitro isomerase activity. RNAi against this enzyme reduced parasites' in vitro growth, and more importantly, bloodstream forms infectivity. Mice infected with induced RNAi clones exhibited lower parasitaemia and a prolonged survival compared to control mice. Phenotypic reversion was achieved by complementing induced RNAi clones with an ectopic copy of Trypanosoma cruzi gene. Our results present the first functional characterization of Trypanosoma brucei ribose 5-phosphate isomerase B, and show the relevance of an enzyme belonging to the non-oxidative branch of the pentose phosphate pathway in the context of Trypanosoma brucei infection.

  2. The major transcripts of the kinetoplast Trypanosoma brucei are very small ribosomal RNA's.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    I.C. Eperon; J.W.G. Janssen; J.H.J. Hoeijmakers (Jan); P. Borst (Piet)

    1983-01-01

    textabstractThe nucleotide sequence has been determined of a 2.2 kb segment of kinetoplast DNA, which encodes the major mitochondrial transcripts (12S and 9S) of Trypanosoma brucei. The sequence shows that the 12S RNA is a large subunit rRNA, although sufficiently unusual for resistance to chloramph

  3. Biosynthesis of SUMOylated Proteins in Bacteria Using the Trypanosoma brucei Enzymatic System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iribarren, Paula Ana; Berazategui, María Agustina; Cazzulo, Juan José; Alvarez, Vanina Eder

    2015-01-01

    Post-translational modification with the Small Ubiquitin-like Modifier (SUMO) is conserved in eukaryotic organisms and plays important regulatory roles in proteins affecting diverse cellular processes. In Trypanosoma brucei, member of one of the earliest branches in eukaryotic evolution, SUMO is essential for normal cell cycle progression and is likely to be involved in the epigenetic control of genes crucial for parasite survival, such as those encoding the variant surface glycoproteins. Molecular pathways modulated by SUMO have started to be discovered by proteomic studies; however, characterization of functional consequences is limited to a reduced number of targets. Here we present a bacterial strain engineered to produce SUMOylated proteins, by transferring SUMO from T. brucei together with the enzymes essential for its activation and conjugation. Due to the lack of background in E. coli, this system is useful to express and identify SUMOylated proteins directly in cell lysates by immunoblotting, and SUMOylated targets can be eventually purified for biochemical or structural studies. We applied this strategy to describe the ability of TbSUMO to form chains in vitro and to detect SUMOylation of a model substrate, PCNA both from Saccharomyces cerevisiae and from T. brucei. To further validate targets, we applied an in vitro deconjugation assay using the T. brucei SUMO-specific protease capable to revert the pattern of modification. This system represents a valuable tool for target validation, mutant generation and functional studies of SUMOylated proteins in trypanosomatids. PMID:26258470

  4. Dynein Light Chain LC8 Is Required for RNA Polymerase I-Mediated Transcription in Trypanosoma brucei, Facilitating Assembly and Promoter Binding of Class I Transcription Factor A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirkham, Justin K; Park, Sung Hee; Nguyen, Tu N; Lee, Ju Huck; Günzl, Arthur

    2016-01-01

    Dynein light chain LC8 is highly conserved among eukaryotes and has both dynein-dependent and dynein-independent functions. Interestingly, LC8 was identified as a subunit of the class I transcription factor A (CITFA), which is essential for transcription by RNA polymerase I (Pol I) in the parasite Trypanosoma brucei. Given that LC8 has never been identified with a basal transcription factor and that T. brucei relies on RNA Pol I for expressing the variant surface glycoprotein (VSG), the key protein in antigenic variation, we investigated the CITFA-specific role of LC8. Depletion of LC8 from mammalian-infective bloodstream trypanosomes affected cell cycle progression, reduced the abundances of rRNA and VSG mRNA, and resulted in rapid cell death. Sedimentation analysis, coimmunoprecipitation of recombinant proteins, and bioinformatic analysis revealed an LC8 binding site near the N terminus of the subunit CITFA2. Mutation of this site prevented the formation of a CITFA2-LC8 heterotetramer and, in vivo, was lethal, affecting assembly of a functional CITFA complex. Gel shift assays and UV cross-linking experiments identified CITFA2 as a promoter-binding CITFA subunit. Accordingly, silencing of LC8 or CITFA2 resulted in a loss of CITFA from RNA Pol I promoters. Hence, we discovered an LC8 interaction that, unprecedentedly, has a basal function in transcription.

  5. T rypanosoma brucei histone H1 inhibits RNA polymerase I transcription and is important for parasite fitness in vivo

    OpenAIRE

    Pena, Ana C.; Pimentel, Mafalda R; Manso, Helena; Vaz-Drago, Rita; Pinto-Neves, Daniel; Aresta-Branco, Francisco; Rijo-Ferreira, Filipa; Guegan, Fabien; Pedro Coelho, Luis; Carmo-Fonseca, Maria; Barbosa-Morais, Nuno L.; Figueiredo, Luisa M.

    2014-01-01

    T rypanosoma brucei is a unicellular parasite that causes sleeping sickness in humans. Most of its transcription is constitutive and driven by RNA polymerase II. RNA polymerase I (Pol I) transcribes not only ribosomal RNA genes, but also protein-encoding genes, including variant surface glycoproteins (VSGs) and procyclins. In T . brucei, histone H1 (H1) is required for VSG silencing and chromatin condensation. However, whether H1 has a genome-wide role in transcription is unknown. Here, using...

  6. Alkaloids Induce Programmed Cell Death in Bloodstream Forms of Trypanosomes (Trypanosoma b. brucei

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    Michael Wink

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available The potential induction of a programmed cell death (PCD in Trypanosoma b. brucei by 55 alkaloids of the quinoline, quinolizidine, isoquinoline, indole, terpene, tropane, steroid, and piperidine type was studied by measuring DNA fragmentation and changes in mitochondrial membrane potential. For comparison, the induction of apoptosis by the same alkaloids in human leukemia cells (Jurkat APO-S was tested. Several alkaloids of the isoquinoline, quinoline, indole and steroidal type (berberine, chelerythrine, emetine, sanguinarine, quinine, ajmalicine, ergotamine, harmine, vinblastine, vincristine, colchicine, chaconine, demissidine and veratridine induced programmed cell death, whereas quinolizidine, tropane, terpene and piperidine alkaloids were mostly inactive. Effective PCD induction (EC50 below 10 µM was caused in T. brucei by chelerythrine, emetine, sanguinarine, and chaconine. The active alkaloids can be characterized by their general property to inhibit protein biosynthesis, to intercalate DNA, to disturb membrane fluidity or to inhibit microtubule formation.

  7. An Atypical Mitochondrial Carrier That Mediates Drug Action in Trypanosoma brucei.

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    Juan P de Macêdo

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Elucidating the mechanism of action of trypanocidal compounds is an important step in the development of more efficient drugs against Trypanosoma brucei. In a screening approach using an RNAi library in T. brucei bloodstream forms, we identified a member of the mitochondrial carrier family, TbMCP14, as a prime candidate mediating the action of a group of anti-parasitic choline analogs. Depletion of TbMCP14 by inducible RNAi in both bloodstream and procyclic forms increased resistance of parasites towards the compounds by 7-fold and 3-fold, respectively, compared to uninduced cells. In addition, down-regulation of TbMCP14 protected bloodstream form mitochondria from a drug-induced decrease in mitochondrial membrane potential. Conversely, over-expression of the carrier in procyclic forms increased parasite susceptibility more than 13-fold. Metabolomic analyses of parasites over-expressing TbMCP14 showed increased levels of the proline metabolite, pyrroline-5-carboxylate, suggesting a possible involvement of TbMCP14 in energy production. The generation of TbMCP14 knock-out parasites showed that the carrier is not essential for survival of T. brucei bloodstream forms, but reduced parasite proliferation under standard culture conditions. In contrast, depletion of TbMCP14 in procyclic forms resulted in growth arrest, followed by parasite death. The time point at which parasite proliferation stopped was dependent on the major energy source, i.e. glucose versus proline, in the culture medium. Together with our findings that proline-dependent ATP production in crude mitochondria from TbMCP14-depleted trypanosomes was reduced compared to control mitochondria, the study demonstrates that TbMCP14 is involved in energy production in T. brucei. Since TbMCP14 belongs to a trypanosomatid-specific clade of mitochondrial carrier family proteins showing very poor similarity to mitochondrial carriers of mammals, it may represent an interesting target for drug

  8. An essential signal peptide peptidase identified in an RNAi screen of serine peptidases of Trypanosoma brucei.

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    Catherine X Moss

    Full Text Available The serine peptidases of Trypanosoma brucei have been viewed as potential drug targets. In particular, the S9 prolyl oligopeptidase subfamily is thought to be a good avenue for drug discovery. This is based on the finding that some S9 peptidases are secreted and active in the mammalian bloodstream, and that they are a class of enzyme against which drugs have successfully been developed. We collated a list of all serine peptidases in T. brucei, identifying 20 serine peptidase genes, of which nine are S9 peptidases. We screened all 20 serine peptidases by RNAi to determine which, if any, are essential for bloodstream form T. brucei survival. All S9 serine peptidases were dispensable for parasite survival in vitro, even when pairs of similar genes, coding for oligopeptidase B or prolyl oligopeptidase, were targeted simultaneously. We also found no effect on parasite survival in an animal host when the S9 peptidases oligopeptidase B, prolyl oligopeptidase or dipeptidyl peptidase 8 were targeted. The only serine peptidase to emerge from the RNAi screen as essential was a putative type-I signal peptide peptidase (SPP1. This gene was essential for parasite survival both in vitro and in vivo. The growth defect conferred by RNAi depletion of SPP1 was rescued by expression of a functional peptidase from an RNAi resistant SPP1 gene. However, expression of catalytically inactive SPP1 was unable to rescue cells from the SPP1 depleted phenotype, demonstrating that SPP1 serine peptidase activity is necessary for T. brucei survival.

  9. A transcription-independent epigenetic mechanism is associated with antigenic switching in Trypanosoma brucei

    OpenAIRE

    Aresta-Branco, Francisco; Pimenta, Silvia; Figueiredo, Luisa M.

    2015-01-01

    Antigenic variation in Trypanosoma brucei relies on periodic switching of variant surface glycoproteins (VSGs), which are transcribed monoallelically by RNA polymerase I from one of about 15 bloodstream expression sites (BES). Chromatin of the actively transcribed BES is depleted of nucleosomes, but it is unclear if this open conformation is a mere consequence of a high rate of transcription, or whether it is maintained by a transcription-independent mechanism. Using an inducible BES-silencin...

  10. Comparative analysis of the kinomes of three pathogenic trypanosomatids: Leishmania major, Trypanosoma brucei and Trypanosoma cruzi

    OpenAIRE

    Parsons, Marilyn; Worthey, Elizabeth A.; Ward, Pauline N; Mottram, Jeremy C.

    2005-01-01

    Background The trypanosomatids Leishmania major, Trypanosoma brucei and Trypanosoma cruzi cause some of the most debilitating diseases of humankind: cutaneous leishmaniasis, African sleeping sickness, and Chagas disease. These protozoa possess complex life cycles that involve development in mammalian and insect hosts, and a tightly coordinated cell cycle ensures propagation of the highly polarized cells. However, the ways in which the parasites respond to their environment and coordinate intr...

  11. Procyclic Trypanosoma brucei do not use Krebs cycle activity for energy generation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Weelden, Susanne W H; Fast, Beate; Vogt, Achim; van der Meer, Pieter; Saas, Joachim; van Hellemond, Jaap J; Tielens, Aloysius G M; Boshart, Michael

    2003-04-11

    The importance of a functional Krebs cycle for energy generation in the procyclic stage of Trypanosoma brucei was investigated under physiological conditions during logarithmic phase growth of a pleomorphic parasite strain. Wild type procyclic cells and mutants with targeted deletion of the gene coding for aconitase were derived by synchronous in vitro differentiation from wild type and mutant (Delta aco::NEO/Delta aco::HYG) bloodstream stage parasites, respectively, where aconitase is not expressed and is dispensable. No differences in intracellular levels of glycolytic and Krebs cycle intermediates were found in procyclic wild type and mutant cells, except for citrate that accumulated up to 90-fold in the mutants, confirming the absence of aconitase activity. Surprisingly, deletion of aconitase did not change differentiation nor the growth rate or the intracellular ATP/ADP ratio in those cells. Metabolic studies using radioactively labeled substrates and NMR analysis demonstrated that glucose and proline were not degraded via the Krebs cycle to CO(2). Instead, glucose was degraded to acetate, succinate, and alanine, whereas proline was degraded to succinate. Importantly, there was absolutely no difference in the metabolic products released by wild type and aconitase knockout parasites, and both were for survival strictly dependent on respiration via the mitochondrial electron transport chain. Hence, although the Krebs cycle enzymes are present, procyclic T. brucei do not use Krebs cycle activity for energy generation, but the mitochondrial respiratory chain is essential for survival and growth. We therefore propose a revised model of the energy metabolism of procyclic T. brucei.

  12. The extraordinary mitochondrion and unusual citric acid cycle in Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Hellemond, J J; Opperdoes, F R; Tielens, A G M

    2005-11-01

    African trypanosomes are parasitic protozoa that cause sleeping sickness and nagana. Trypanosomes are not only of scientific interest because of their clinical importance, but also because these protozoa contain several very unusual biological features, such as their specially adapted mitochondrion and the compartmentalization of glycolytic enzymes in glycosomes. The energy metabolism of Trypanosoma brucei differs significantly from that of their hosts and changes drastically during the life cycle. Despite the presence of all citric acid cycle enzymes in procyclic insect-stage T. brucei, citric acid cycle activity is not used for energy generation. Recent investigations on the influence of substrate availability on the type of energy metabolism showed that absence of glycolytic substrates did not induce a shift from a fermentative metabolism to complete oxidation of substrates. Apparently, insect-stage T. brucei use parts of the citric acid cycle for other purposes than for complete degradation of mitochondrial substrates. Parts of the cycle are suggested to be used for (i) transport of acetyl-CoA units from the mitochondrion to the cytosol for the biosynthesis of fatty acids, (ii) degradation of proline and glutamate to succinate, (iii) generation of malate, which can then be used for gluconeogenesis. Therefore the citric acid cycle in trypanosomes does not function as a cycle.

  13. Experimental Trypanosoma brucei infection at immediate post partum period:effects on dam and the offspring

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Izuchukwu S Ochiogu; Chukwuka N Uchendu; John I Ihedioha

    2010-01-01

    Objective:To investigate the effects of immediate post-partum infection with Trypanosoma brucei (T. brucei) on dam and offspring. Methods:Sixty female Albino rats (Rattus norvegicus) weighing between 130-170 g were used as animal model. The animals were divided as follows:25 infected between 1-5 days post partum; 10 infected unbred as positive controls; and 25 uninfected as negative controls. The following parameters were evaluated:packed cell volume (PCV), level of parasitaemia, survival time, litter size and litter weight at birth and on days 7, 14 and 21 post delivery, using conventional methods. Possible trans-mammary transmission of infection to litter through milk was also assessed. Results:The results showed a comparatively (P<0.05) higher mean PCV value for the uninfected negative control on the 8th day post infection compared with the infected groups which corresponded with the increasing level of parasitaemia in the two infected groups. Mean litter size and litter weights were higher (P< 0.05) in the uninfected controls on the 21st day. Survival time in the infected groups were similar. No evidence of trans-mammary transfer of infection was recorded. Conclusion:T. brucei infection during immediate post partum period is detrimental to the dam and impairs growth of the offspring.

  14. Advancing Trypanosoma brucei genome annotation through ribosome profiling and spliced leader mapping.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parsons, Marilyn; Ramasamy, Gowthaman; Vasconcelos, Elton J R; Jensen, Bryan C; Myler, Peter J

    2015-08-01

    Since the initial publication of the trypanosomatid genomes, curation has been ongoing. Here we make use of existing Trypanosoma brucei ribosome profiling data to provide evidence of ribosome occupancy (and likely translation) of mRNAs from 225 currently unannotated coding sequences (CDSs). A small number of these putative genes correspond to extra copies of previously annotated genes, but 85% are novel. The median size of these novels CDSs is small (81 aa), indicating that past annotation work has excelled at detecting large CDSs. Of the unique CDSs confirmed here, over half have candidate orthologues in other trypanosomatid genomes, most of which were not yet annotated as protein-coding genes. Nonetheless, approximately one-third of the new CDSs were found only in T. brucei subspecies. Using ribosome footprints, RNA-Seq and spliced leader mapping data, we updated previous work to definitively revise the start sites for 414 CDSs as compared to the current gene models. The data pointed to several regions of the genome that had sequence errors that altered coding region boundaries. Finally, we consolidated this data with our previous work to propose elimination of 683 putative genes as protein-coding and arrive at a view of the translatome of slender bloodstream and procyclic culture form T. brucei.

  15. Discovery of Inhibitors of Trypanosoma brucei by Phenotypic Screening of a Focused Protein Kinase Library.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodland, Andrew; Thompson, Stephen; Cleghorn, Laura A T; Norcross, Neil; De Rycker, Manu; Grimaldi, Raffaella; Hallyburton, Irene; Rao, Bhavya; Norval, Suzanne; Stojanovski, Laste; Brun, Reto; Kaiser, Marcel; Frearson, Julie A; Gray, David W; Wyatt, Paul G; Read, Kevin D; Gilbert, Ian H

    2015-11-01

    A screen of a focused kinase inhibitor library against Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense led to the identification of seven series, totaling 121 compounds, which showed >50 % inhibition at 5 μm. Screening of these hits in a T. b. brucei proliferation assay highlighted three compounds with a 1H-imidazo[4,5-b]pyrazin-2(3H)-one scaffold that showed sub-micromolar activity and excellent selectivity against the MRC5 cell line. Subsequent rounds of optimisation led to the identification of compounds that exhibited good in vitro drug metabolism and pharmacokinetics (DMPK) properties, although in general this series suffered from poor solubility. A scaffold-hopping exercise led to the identification of a 1H-pyrazolo[3,4-b]pyridine scaffold, which retained potency. A number of examples were assessed in a T. b. brucei growth assay, which could differentiate static and cidal action. Compounds from the 1H-imidazo[4,5-b]pyrazin-2(3H)-one series were found to be either static or growth-slowing and not cidal. Compounds with the 1H-pyrazolo[3,4-b]pyridine scaffold were found to be cidal and showed an unusual biphasic nature in this assay, suggesting they act by at least two mechanisms.

  16. NLP is a novel transcription regulator involved in VSG expression site control in Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narayanan, Mani Shankar; Kushwaha, Manish; Ersfeld, Klaus; Fullbrook, Alexander; Stanne, Tara M; Rudenko, Gloria

    2011-03-01

    Trypanosoma brucei mono-allelically expresses one of approximately 1500 variant surface glycoprotein (VSG) genes while multiplying in the mammalian bloodstream. The active VSG is transcribed by RNA polymerase I in one of approximately 15 telomeric VSG expression sites (ESs). T. brucei is unusual in controlling gene expression predominantly post-transcriptionally, and how ESs are mono-allelically controlled remains a mystery. Here we identify a novel transcription regulator, which resembles a nucleoplasmin-like protein (NLP) with an AT-hook motif. NLP is key for ES control in bloodstream form T. brucei, as NLP knockdown results in 45- to 65-fold derepression of the silent VSG221 ES. NLP is also involved in repression of transcription in the inactive VSG Basic Copy arrays, minichromosomes and procyclin loci. NLP is shown to be enriched on the 177- and 50-bp simple sequence repeats, the non-transcribed regions around rDNA and procyclin, and both active and silent ESs. Blocking NLP synthesis leads to downregulation of the active ES, indicating that NLP plays a role in regulating appropriate levels of transcription of ESs in both their active and silent state. Discovery of the unusual transcription regulator NLP provides new insight into the factors that are critical for ES control.

  17. The use of yellow fluorescent hybrids to indicate mating in Trypanosoma brucei

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ferris Vanessa

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Trypanosoma brucei undergoes genetic exchange in its insect vector, the tsetse fly, by an unknown mechanism. The difficulties of working with this experimental system of genetic exchange have hampered investigation, particularly because the trypanosome life cycle stages involved cannot be cultured in vitro and therefore must be examined in the insect. Searching for small numbers of hybrid trypanosomes directly in the fly has become possible through the incorporation of fluorescent reporter genes, and we have previously carried out a successful cross using a reporter-repressor strategy. However, we could not be certain that all fluorescent trypanosomes observed in that cross were hybrids, due to mutations of the repressor leading to spontaneous fluorescence, and we have therefore developed an alternative strategy. Results To visualize the production of hybrids in the fly, parental trypanosome clones were transfected with a gene encoding Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP or Red Fluorescent Protein (RFP. Co-infection of flies with red and green fluorescent parental trypanosomes produced yellow fluorescent hybrids, which were easily visualized in the fly salivary glands. Yellow trypanosomes were not seen in midgut or proventricular samples and first appeared in the glands as epimastigotes as early as 13 days after fly infection. Cloned progeny originating from individual salivary glands had yellow, red, green or no fluorescence and were confirmed as hybrids by microsatellite, molecular karyotype and kinetoplast (mitochondrial DNA analyses. Hybrid clones showed biparental inheritance of both nuclear and kinetoplast genomes. While segregation and reassortment of the reporter genes and microsatellite alleles were consistent with Mendelian inheritance, flow cytometry measurement of DNA content revealed both diploid and polyploid trypanosomes among the hybrid progeny clones. Conclusion The strategy of using production of yellow hybrids

  18. 3-(3-amino-3-carboxypropyl)-5,6-Dihydrouridine is one of two novel post-transcriptional modifications in tRNALys(UUU) from Trypanosoma brucei

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Krog, Jesper Schak; Español, Yaiza; Giessing, Anders M B;

    2011-01-01

    was MALDI-TOF MS of two independent digests of the tRNA, with RNase A and RNase T1, respectively. This revealed digestion products harbouring mass-changing modifications. Next, the modifications were mapped at the nucleotide level in the RNase products by tandem MS. Comparison with the sequence......tRNA is the most heavily modified of all RNA types, with typically 10-20% of the residues being post-transcriptionally altered. Unravelling the modification pattern of a tRNA is a challenging task; there are 92 currently known tRNA modifications [1], many of which are chemically similar....... Furthermore, the tRNA has to be investigated with single-nucleotide resolution in order to ensure complete mapping of all modifications. In the present work, we characterized tRNA(Lys) (UUU) from Trypanosoma brucei, and provide a complete overview of its post-transcriptional modifications. The first step...

  19. Identification of potent inhibitors of the Trypanosoma brucei methionyl-tRNA synthetase via high-throughput orthogonal screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pedró-Rosa, Laura; Buckner, Frederick S; Ranade, Ranae M; Eberhart, Christina; Madoux, Franck; Gillespie, J Robert; Koh, Cho Yeow; Brown, Steven; Lohse, Jacqueline; Verlinde, Christophe L M; Fan, Erkang; Bannister, Thomas; Scampavia, Louis; Hol, Wim G J; Spicer, Timothy; Hodder, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Improved therapies for the treatment of Trypanosoma brucei, the etiological agent of the neglected tropical disease human African trypanosomiasis, are urgently needed. We targeted T. brucei methionyl-tRNA synthetase (MetRS), an aminoacyl-tRNA synthase (aaRS), which is considered an important drug target due to its role in protein synthesis, cell survival, and its significant differences in structure from its mammalian ortholog. Previous work using RNA interference of MetRS demonstrated growth inhibition of T. brucei, further validating it as an attractive target. We report the development and implementation of two orthogonal high-throughput screening assays to identify inhibitors of T. brucei MetRS. First, a chemiluminescence assay was implemented in a 1536-well plate format and used to monitor adenosine triphosphate depletion during the aminoacylation reaction. Hit confirmation then used a counterscreen in which adenosine monophosphate production was assessed using fluorescence polarization technology. In addition, a miniaturized cell viability assay was used to triage cytotoxic compounds. Finally, lower throughput assays involving whole parasite growth inhibition of both human and parasite MetRS were used to analyze compound selectivity and efficacy. The outcome of this high-throughput screening campaign has led to the discovery of 19 potent and selective T. brucei MetRS inhibitors.

  20. The Centriole Cartwheel Protein SAS-6 in Trypanosoma brucei Is Required for Probasal Body Biogenesis and Flagellum Assembly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Huiqing; Liu, Yi; Zhou, Qing; Siegel, Sara; Li, Ziyin

    2015-09-01

    The centriole in eukaryotes functions as the cell's microtubule-organizing center (MTOC) to nucleate spindle assembly, and its biogenesis requires an evolutionarily conserved protein, SAS-6, which assembles the centriole cartwheel. Trypanosoma brucei, an early branching protozoan, possesses the basal body as its MTOC to nucleate flagellum biogenesis. However, little is known about the components of the basal body and their roles in basal body biogenesis and flagellum assembly. Here, we report that the T. brucei SAS-6 homolog, TbSAS-6, is localized to the mature basal body and the probasal body throughout the cell cycle. RNA interference (RNAi) of TbSAS-6 inhibited probasal body biogenesis, compromised flagellum assembly, and caused cytokinesis arrest. Surprisingly, overexpression of TbSAS-6 in T. brucei also impaired probasal body duplication and flagellum assembly, contrary to SAS-6 overexpression in humans, which produces supernumerary centrioles. Furthermore, we showed that depletion of T. brucei Polo-like kinase, TbPLK, or inhibition of TbPLK activity did not abolish TbSAS-6 localization to the basal body, in contrast to the essential role of Polo-like kinase in recruiting SAS-6 to centrioles in animals. Altogether, these results identified the essential role of TbSAS-6 in probasal body biogenesis and flagellum assembly and suggest the presence of a TbPLK-independent pathway governing basal body duplication in T. brucei.

  1. Characterization of a Novel Class I Transcription Factor A (CITFA) Subunit That Is Indispensable for Transcription by the Multifunctional RNA Polymerase I of Trypanosoma brucei

    KAUST Repository

    Nguyen, T. N.

    2012-10-26

    Trypanosoma brucei is the only organism known to have evolved a multifunctional RNA polymerase I (pol I) system that is used to express the parasite\\'s ribosomal RNAs, as well as its major cell surface antigens, namely, the variant surface glycoprotein (VSG) and procyclin, which are vital for establishing successful infections in the mammalian host and the tsetse vector, respectively. Thus far, biochemical analyses of the T. brucei RNA pol I transcription machinery have elucidated the subunit structure of the enzyme and identified the class I transcription factor A (CITFA). CITFA binds to RNA pol I promoters, and its CITFA-2 subunit was shown to be absolutely essential for RNA pol I transcription in the parasite. Tandem affinity purification (TAP) of CITFA revealed the subunits CITFA-1 to -6, which are conserved only among kinetoplastid organisms, plus the dynein light chain DYNLL1. Here, by tagging CITFA-6 instead of CITFA-2, a complex was purified that contained all known CITFA subunits, as well as a novel proline-rich protein. Functional studies carried out in vivo and in vitro, as well as a colocalization study, unequivocally demonstrated that this protein is a bona fide CITFA subunit, essential for parasite viability and indispensable for RNA pol I transcription of ribosomal gene units and the active VSG expression site in the mammalian-infective life cycle stage of the parasite. Interestingly, CITFA-7 function appears to be species specific, because expression of an RNA interference (RNAi)-resistant CITFA-7 transgene from Trypanosoma cruzi could not rescue the lethal phenotype of silencing endogenous CITFA-7.

  2. The role of B-cells and IgM antibodies in parasitemia, anemia, and VSG switching in Trypanosoma brucei-infected mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefan Magez

    Full Text Available African trypanosomes are extracellular parasitic protozoa, predominantly transmitted by the bite of the haematophagic tsetse fly. The main mechanism considered to mediate parasitemia control in a mammalian host is the continuous interaction between antibodies and the parasite surface, covered by variant-specific surface glycoproteins. Early experimental studies have shown that B-cell responses can be strongly protective but are limited by their VSG-specificity. We have used B-cell (microMT and IgM-deficient (IgM(-/- mice to investigate the role of B-cells and IgM antibodies in parasitemia control and the in vivo induction of trypanosomiasis-associated anemia. These infection studies revealed that that the initial setting of peak levels of parasitemia in Trypanosoma brucei-infected microMT and IgM(-/- mice occurred independent of the presence of B-cells. However, B-cells helped to periodically reduce circulating parasites levels and were required for long term survival, while IgM antibodies played only a limited role in this process. Infection-associated anemia, hypothesized to be mediated by B-cell responses, was induced during infection in microMT mice as well as in IgM(-/- mice, and as such occurred independently from the infection-induced host antibody response. Antigenic variation, the main immune evasion mechanism of African trypanosomes, occurred independently from host antibody responses against the parasite's ever-changing antigenic glycoprotein coat. Collectively, these results demonstrated that in murine experimental T. brucei trypanosomiasis, B-cells were crucial for periodic peak parasitemia clearance, whereas parasite-induced IgM antibodies played only a limited role in the outcome of the infection.

  3. Structures of Trypanosoma brucei methionyl-tRNA synthetase with urea-based inhibitors provide guidance for drug design against sleeping sickness.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cho Yeow Koh

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Methionyl-tRNA synthetase of Trypanosoma brucei (TbMetRS is an important target in the development of new antitrypanosomal drugs. The enzyme is essential, highly flexible and displaying a large degree of changes in protein domains and binding pockets in the presence of substrate, product and inhibitors. Targeting this protein will benefit from a profound understanding of how its structure adapts to ligand binding. A series of urea-based inhibitors (UBIs has been developed with IC50 values as low as 19 nM against the enzyme. The UBIs were shown to be orally available and permeable through the blood-brain barrier, and are therefore candidates for development of drugs for the treatment of late stage human African trypanosomiasis. Here, we expand the structural diversity of inhibitors from the previously reported collection and tested for their inhibitory effect on TbMetRS and on the growth of T. brucei cells. The binding modes and binding pockets of 14 UBIs are revealed by determination of their crystal structures in complex with TbMetRS at resolutions between 2.2 Å to 2.9 Å. The structures show binding of the UBIs through conformational selection, including occupancy of the enlarged methionine pocket and the auxiliary pocket. General principles underlying the affinity of UBIs for TbMetRS are derived from these structures, in particular the optimum way to fill the two binding pockets. The conserved auxiliary pocket might play a role in binding tRNA. In addition, a crystal structure of a ternary TbMetRS•inhibitor•AMPPCP complex indicates that the UBIs are not competing with ATP for binding, instead are interacting with ATP through hydrogen bond. This suggests a possibility that a general 'ATP-engaging' binding mode can be utilized for the design and development of inhibitors targeting tRNA synthetases of other disease-causing pathogen.

  4. Central Nervous System Parasitosis and Neuroinflammation Ameliorated by Systemic IL-10 Administration in Trypanosoma brucei-Infected Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodgers, Jean; Bradley, Barbara; Kennedy, Peter G E; Sternberg, Jeremy M

    2015-01-01

    Invasion of the central nervous system (CNS) by African trypanosomes represents a critical step in the development of human African trypanosomiasis. In both clinical cases and experimental mouse infections it has been demonstrated that predisposition to CNS invasion is associated with a type 1 systemic inflammatory response. Using the Trypanosoma brucei brucei GVR35 experimental infection model, we demonstrate that systemic delivery of the counter-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 lowers plasma IFN-γ and TNF-α concentrations, CNS parasitosis and ameliorates neuro-inflammatory pathology and clinical symptoms of disease. The results provide evidence that CNS invasion may be susceptible to immunological attenuation.

  5. Trypanocidal activity of organotin chlorides on Trypanosoma brucei-infected mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuaibu M.N.

    2000-03-01

    Full Text Available The organotin compounds dibulyltin (DBTC and diphenyltin dichlorides (DPTC were tested for trypanocidal activity on a Trypanosoma brucei-infected mice model. At a dose of 10 mg DBTC and 15 mg DPTC/kg/day for five consecutive days, they cleared the parasites from the peripheral blood of the infected mice. Subinoculation of some healthy mice with the homogenates of liver, spleen, kidney, cerebrospinal fluid and blood from the mice considered cured, showed a few cases of relapse. The LD50 of DBTC and DPTC are 90 mg/kg and 75 mg/kg respectively.

  6. A haptoglobin-hemoglobin receptor conveys innate immunity to Trypanosoma brucei in humans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vanhollebeke, Benoit; De Muylder, Géraldine; Nielsen, Marianne J;

    2008-01-01

    The protozoan parasite Trypanosoma brucei is lysed by apolipoprotein L-I, a component of human high-density lipoprotein (HDL) particles that are also characterized by the presence of haptoglobin-related protein. We report that this process is mediated by a parasite glycoprotein receptor, which...... receptor also recognized the complex between hemoglobin and haptoglobin-related protein, which explains its ability to capture trypanolytic HDLs. Thus, in humans the presence of haptoglobin-related protein has diverted the function of the trypanosome haptoglobin-hemoglobin receptor to elicit innate host...

  7. Zinc finger nuclease technology: A stable tool for high efficiency transformation in bloodstream form T. brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schumann, Gabriela; Kangussu-Marcolino, Monica M; Doiron, Nicholas; Käser, Sandro; de Assis Burle-Caldas, Gabriela; DaRocha, Wanderson D; Teixeira, Santuza M; Roditi, Isabel

    2017-02-20

    In Trypanosoma brucei, the generation of knockout mutants is relatively easy compared to other organisms as transfection methods are well established. These methods have their limitations, however, when it comes to the generation of genome-wide libraries that require a minimum of several hundred thousand transformants. Double-strand breaks with the meganuclease ISce-I dramatically increase transformation efficiency, but are not widely in use as cell lines need to be generated de novo before each transfection. Here we show that zinc finger nucleases are a robust and stable tool that can enhance transformation in bloodstream forms by more than an order of magnitude.

  8. Structures of aspartate aminotransferases from Trypanosoma brucei, Leishmania major and Giardia lamblia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abendroth, Jan; Choi, Ryan; Wall, Abigail; Clifton, Matthew C; Lukacs, Christine M; Staker, Bart L; Van Voorhis, Wesley; Myler, Peter; Lorimer, Don D; Edwards, Thomas E

    2015-05-01

    The structures of three aspartate aminotransferases (AATs) from eukaryotic pathogens were solved within the Seattle Structural Genomics Center for Infectious Disease (SSGCID). Both the open and closed conformations of AAT were observed. Pyridoxal phosphate was bound to the active site via a Schiff base to a conserved lysine. An active-site mutant showed that Trypanosoma brucei AAT still binds pyridoxal phosphate even in the absence of the tethering lysine. The structures highlight the challenges for the structure-based design of inhibitors targeting the active site, while showing options for inhibitor design targeting the N-terminal arm.

  9. KREX2 is not essential for either procyclic or bloodstream form Trypanosoma brucei.

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    Jason Carnes

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Most mitochondrial mRNAs in Trypanosoma brucei require RNA editing for maturation and translation. The edited RNAs primarily encode proteins of the oxidative phosphorylation system. These parasites undergo extensive changes in energy metabolism between the insect and bloodstream stages which are mirrored by alterations in RNA editing. Two U-specific exonucleases, KREX1 and KREX2, are both present in protein complexes (editosomes that catalyze RNA editing but the relative roles of each protein are not known. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The requirement for KREX2 for RNA editing in vivo was assessed in both procyclic (insect and bloodstream form parasites by methods that use homologous recombination for gene elimination. These studies resulted in null mutant cells in which both alleles were eliminated. The viability of these cells demonstrates that KREX2 is not essential in either life cycle stage, despite certain defects in RNA editing in vivo. Furthermore, editosomes isolated from KREX2 null cells require KREX1 for in vitro U-specific exonuclease activity. CONCLUSIONS: KREX2 is a U-specific exonuclease that is dispensable for RNA editing in vivo in T. brucei BFs and PFs. This result suggests that the U deletion activity, which is required for RNA editing, is primarily mediated in vivo by KREX1 which is normally found associated with only one type of editosome. The retention of the KREX2 gene implies a non-essential role or a role that is essential in other life cycle stages or conditions.

  10. Analysis of the Trypanosoma brucei cell cycle by quantitative DAPI imaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siegel, T Nicolai; Hekstra, Doeke R; Cross, George A M

    2008-08-01

    Trypanosoma brucei has two DNA compartments: the nucleus and the kinetoplast. DNA replication of these two compartments only partially coincides. Woodward and Gull [Woodward R, Gull K. Timing of nuclear and kinetoplast DNA replication and early morphological events in the cell cycle of Trypanosoma brucei. J Cell Sci 1990;95:49-57] comprehensively studied the relative timing of the replication and segregation of nuclear DNA (nDNA) and kinetoplast DNA (kDNA). Others have since assumed the consistency of morphological indicators of cell-cycle stage among strains and conditions. We report the use of quantitative DAPI imaging to determine the cell-cycle stage of individual procyclic cells. Using this approach, we found that kinetoplast elongation occurs mainly during nuclear S phase and not during G2, as previously assumed. We confirmed this finding by sorting cells by DNA content, followed by fluorescence microscopy. In addition, simultaneous quantitative imaging at two wavelengths can be used to determine the abundance of cell-cycle-regulated proteins during the cell cycle. We demonstrate this technique by co-staining for the non-acetylated state of lysine 4 of histone H4 (H4K4), which is enriched during nuclear S phase.

  11. Trypanosoma Brucei Aquaglyceroporins Facilitate the Uptake of Arsenite and Antimonite in a pH Dependent Way

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    Néstor L. Uzcátegui

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Background: Trypanosoma brucei is a primitive parasitic protozoan that thrives in diverse environments such as the midgut of the tsetse fly and the blood of a mammalian host. For an adequate adaptation to these environments, the parasite´s aquaglyceroporins play an important role. Methods and Results: In order to test their ability to transport trivalent arsenic and antimony, we expressed the three known Trypanosoma brucei aquaglyceroporins (TbAQPs in the heterologous systems of yeast null aquaporin mutant and Xenopus laevis oocytes. For both expression systems, we found a pH dependent intracellular accumulation of As(III or Sb(III mediated by all of the three TbAQPs, with the exception of TbAQP1-As(III uptake. Additionally, we observed that Trypanosoma brucei aquaglyceroporins allow the passage of As(III in both directions. Conclusion: Taken together, these results demonstrated that T. brucei aquaglyceroporins can serve as entry routes for As(III and Sb(III into the parasitic cell, and that this uptake is pH sensitive. Therefore, aquaporins of protozoan parasites may be considered useful as a vehicle for drug delivery.

  12. Immunospecific immunoglobulins and IL-10 as markers for Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense late stage disease in experimentally infected vervet monkeys

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ngotho, Maina; Kagira, J.M.; Jensen, Henrik Michael Elvang

    2009-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To determine the usefulness of IL-10 and immunoglobulin M (IgM) as biomarkers for staging HAT in vervet monkeys, a useful pathogenesis model for humans. METHODS: Vervet monkeys were infected with Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense and subsequently given sub-curative and curative treatment 28...

  13. Screening North American plant extracts in vitro against Trypanosoma brucei, the causative agent for Human African Trypanosomiasis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Natural products extracts from 522 plants collected from different parts of the North America were screened in vitro against trypamastigote forms of Trypanosoma brucei. The active extracts(150)with >90% inhibition at 20ug/mL concentrations from the plants namely, Alnus rubra, Hoita macrostachya, S...

  14. The contribution of chromosomal translocations to antigenic variation in Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van der Ploeg, L H; Cornelissen, A W

    1984-11-13

    Genomic rearrangements influencing gene expression occur throughout nature. Several of these rearrangements disrupt normal gene expression, as exemplified by the genetic alterations caused by the mobile genetic elements of maize or Drosophila (see Shapiro 1983). Other rearrangements are part of the normal developmental programme of an organism. An understanding of the control of genomic rearrangements and their effects on gene expression should contribute to our insight into the mechanism of genetic programming and cellular development. The protozoan parasite Trypanosoma brucei exhibits a variety of genomic rearrangements that influence the expression of genes that code for versions of the variant surface glycoprotein (v.s.g.), which makes up the cell surface coat. V.s.g. genes are expressed in a mutually exclusive manner. Several v.s.g. genes are activated by duplicative transposition of the gene to a telomeric expression site where they are transcribed, while others can be activated without detectable genomic rearrangements. Recently we have been able to fractionate the chromosomes of T. brucei in agarose gels (Van der Ploeg et al. 1984 a). This led to the observations that duplicative transpositions occur inter-chromosomally and that the chromosomes of T. brucei are subject to frequent recombinations that displace hundreds of kilobase pairs. At least two and possibly more telomeric expression sites can be used for v.s.g. gene transcription. How these sites are activated and inactivated is still unsolved, but this does not depend on recombinations in the vicinity of the gene. Gross genomic rearrangements occur sometimes in correlation with antigenic switching and this suggests that such rearrangements have a function in regulating the mutually exclusive transcription of the different expression sites. V.s.g. genes consist of two exons. No physical linkage of the 35 nucleotide (n.t.) mini-exon to the v.s.g. gene main exon occurred within 15 kilobase pairs in

  15. Sec16 determines the size and functioning of the Golgi in the protist parasite, Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sealey-Cardona, Marco; Schmidt, Katy; Demmel, Lars; Hirschmugl, Tatjana; Gesell, Tanja; Dong, Gang; Warren, Graham

    2014-06-01

    The Sec16 homologue in Trypanosoma brucei has been identified and characterized. TbSec16 colocalizes with COPII components at the single endoplasmic reticulum exit site (ERES), which is next to the single Golgi stack in the insect (procyclic) form of this organism. Depletion of TbSec16 reduces the size of the ERES and the Golgi, and slows growth and transport of a secretory marker to the cell surface; conversely, overexpression of TbSec16 increases the size of the ERES and Golgi but has no effect on growth or secretion. Together these data suggest that TbSec16 regulates the size of the ERES and Golgi and this size is set for optimal growth of the organism.

  16. Trypanosoma brucei Parasites Occupy and Functionally Adapt to the Adipose Tissue in Mice

    OpenAIRE

    Trindade, Sandra; Rijo-Ferreira, Filipa; Carvalho, Tânia; Pinto-Neves, Daniel; Guegan, Fabien; Aresta-Branco, Francisco; Bento, Fabio; Young, Simon A.; Pinto, Andreia; Van Den Abbeele, Jan; Ribeiro, Ruy M.; Dias, Sérgio; Smith, Terry K.; Figueiredo, Luisa M.

    2016-01-01

    This work was supported by 55007419 (HHMI) and 2151 (EMBO) to L.M.F., D.P.-N., F.B., and F.G.; FCT fellowships to S.T., F.R.-F., and F.A.-B. (SFRH/BPD/89833/2012, SFRH/BD/51286/2010, and SFRH/BD/80718/2011, respectively); Wellcome Trust grant (093228), MRC MR/M020118/1, and European Community Seventh Framework Programme under grant agreement No. 602773 (Project KINDRED) to S.A.Y. and T.K.S.; and PAI 7/41 (Belspo) and ERC-NANOSYM to J.V.D.A. Trypanosoma brucei is an extracellular parasite t...

  17. Contribution of Glucose Transport to the Control of the Glycolytic Flux in Trypanosoma brucei

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bakker, Barbara M.; Walsh, Michael C.; Ter Kuile, Benno H.; Mensonides, Femke I. C.; Michels, Paul A. M.; Opperdoes, Fred R.; Westerhoff, Hans V.

    1999-08-01

    The rate of glucose transport across the plasma membrane of the bloodstream form of Trypanosoma brucei was modulated by titration of the hexose transporter with the inhibitor phloretin, and the effect on the glycolytic flux was measured. A rapid glucose uptake assay was developed to measure the transport activity independently of the glycolytic flux. Phloretin proved a competitive inhibitor. When the effect of the intracellular glucose concentration on the inhibition was taken into account, the flux control coefficient of the glucose transporter was between 0.3 and 0.5 at 5 mM glucose. Because the flux control coefficients of all steps in a metabolic pathway sum to 1, this result proves that glucose transport is not the rate-limiting step of trypanosome glycolysis. Under physiological conditions, transport shares the control with other steps. At glucose concentrations much lower than physiological, the glucose carrier assumed all control, in close agreement with model predictions.

  18. Population genetics of Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense: clonality and diversity within and between foci.

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    Craig W Duffy

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available African trypanosomes are unusual among pathogenic protozoa in that they can undergo their complete morphological life cycle in the tsetse fly vector with mating as a non-obligatory part of this development. Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense, which infects humans and livestock in East and Southern Africa, has classically been described as a host-range variant of the non-human infective Trypanosoma brucei that occurs as stable clonal lineages. We have examined T. b. rhodesiense populations from East (Uganda and Southern (Malawi Africa using a panel of microsatellite markers, incorporating both spatial and temporal analyses. Our data demonstrate that Ugandan T. b. rhodesiense existed as clonal populations, with a small number of highly related genotypes and substantial linkage disequilibrium between pairs of loci. However, these populations were not stable as the dominant genotypes changed and the genetic diversity also reduced over time. Thus these populations do not conform to one of the criteria for strict clonality, namely stability of predominant genotypes over time, and our results show that, in a period in the mid 1990s, the previously predominant genotypes were not detected but were replaced by a novel clonal population with limited genetic relationship to the original population present between 1970 and 1990. In contrast, the Malawi T. b. rhodesiense population demonstrated significantly greater diversity and evidence for frequent genetic exchange. Therefore, the population genetics of T. b. rhodesiense is more complex than previously described. This has important implications for the spread of the single copy T. b. rhodesiense gene that allows human infectivity, and therefore the epidemiology of the human disease, as well as suggesting that these parasites represent an important organism to study the influence of optional recombination upon population genetic dynamics.

  19. Knockdown of Inner Arm Protein IC138 in Trypanosoma brucei Causes Defective Motility and Flagellar Detachment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Corinne S Wilson

    Full Text Available Motility in the protozoan parasite Trypanosoma brucei is conferred by a single flagellum, attached alongside the cell, which moves the cell forward using a beat that is generated from tip-to-base. We are interested in characterizing components that regulate flagellar beating, in this study we extend the characterization of TbIC138, the ortholog of a dynein intermediate chain that regulates axonemal inner arm dynein f/I1. TbIC138 was tagged In situ-and shown to fractionate with the inner arm components of the flagellum. RNAi knockdown of TbIC138 resulted in significantly reduced protein levels, mild growth defect and significant motility defects. These cells tended to cluster, exhibited slow and abnormal motility and some cells had partially or fully detached flagella. Slight but significant increases were observed in the incidence of mis-localized or missing kinetoplasts. To document development of the TbIC138 knockdown phenotype over time, we performed a detailed analysis of flagellar detachment and motility changes over 108 hours following induction of RNAi. Abnormal motility, such as slow twitching or irregular beating, was observed early, and became progressively more severe such that by 72 hours-post-induction, approximately 80% of the cells were immotile. Progressively more cells exhibited flagellar detachment over time, but this phenotype was not as prevalent as immotility, affecting less than 60% of the population. Detached flagella had abnormal beating, but abnormal beating was also observed in cells with no flagellar detachment, suggesting that TbIC138 has a direct, or primary, effect on the flagellar beat, whereas detachment is a secondary phenotype of TbIC138 knockdown. Our results are consistent with the role of TbIC138 as a regulator of motility, and has a phenotype amenable to more extensive structure-function analyses to further elucidate its role in the control of flagellar beat in T. brucei.

  20. Secondary Metabolites from Vietnamese Marine Invertebrates with Activity against Trypanosoma brucei and T. cruzi

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    Nguyen Phuong Thao

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Marine-derived natural products from invertebrates comprise an extremely diverse and promising source of the compounds from a wide variety of structural classes. This study describes the discovery of five marine natural products with activity against Trypanosoma species by natural product library screening using whole cell in vitro assays. We investigated the anti-trypanosomal activity of the extracts from the soft corals and echinoderms living in Vietnamese seas. Of the samples screened, the methanolic extracts of several marine organisms exhibited potent activities against cultures of Trypanosoma brucei and T. cruzi (EC50 < 5.0 μg/mL. Among the compounds isolated from these extracts, laevigatol B (1 from Lobophytum crassum and L. laevigatum, (24S-ergost-4-ene-3-one (2 from Sinularia dissecta, astropectenol A (3 from Astropecten polyacanthus, and cholest-8-ene-3β,5α,6β,7α-tetraol (4 from Diadema savignyi showed inhibitory activity against T. brucei with EC50 values ranging from 1.57 ± 0.14 to 14.6 ± 1.36 μM, relative to the positive control, pentamidine (EC50 = 0.015 ± 0.003 μM. Laevigatol B (1 and 5α-cholest-8(14-ene-3β,7α-diol (5 exhibited also significant inhibitory effects on T. cruzi. The cytotoxic activity of the pure compounds on mammalian cells was also assessed and found to be insignificant in all cases. This is the first report on the inhibitory effects of marine organisms collected in Vietnamese seas against Trypanosoma species responsible for neglected tropical diseases.

  1. Processing of the glycosomal matrix-protein import receptor PEX5 of Trypanosoma brucei

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    Gualdrón-López, Melisa [Research Unit for Tropical Diseases, de Duve Institute, Université catholique de Louvain, Brussels (Belgium); Michels, Paul A.M., E-mail: paul.michels@uclouvain.be [Research Unit for Tropical Diseases, de Duve Institute, Université catholique de Louvain, Brussels (Belgium)

    2013-02-01

    Highlights: ► Most eukaryotic cells have a single gene for the peroxin PEX5. ► PEX5 is sensitive to in vitro proteolysis in distantly related organisms. ► TbPEX5 undergoes N-terminal truncation in vitro and possibly in vivo. ► Truncated TbPEX5 is still capable of binding PTS1-containing proteins. ► PEX5 truncation is physiologically relevant or an evolutionary conserved artifact. -- Abstract: Glycolysis in kinetoplastid protists such as Trypanosoma brucei is compartmentalized in peroxisome-like organelles called glycosomes. Glycosomal matrix-protein import involves a cytosolic receptor, PEX5, which recognizes the peroxisomal-targeting signal type 1 (PTS1) present at the C-terminus of the majority of matrix proteins. PEX5 appears generally susceptible to in vitro proteolytic processing. On western blots of T. brucei, two PEX5 forms are detected with apparent M{sub r} of 100 kDa and 72 kDa. 5′-RACE-PCR showed that TbPEX5 is encoded by a unique transcript that can be translated into a protein of maximally 72 kDa. However, recombinant PEX5 migrates aberrantly in SDS–PAGE with an apparent M{sub r} of 100 kDa, similarly as observed for the native peroxin. In vitro protease susceptibility analysis of native and {sup 35}S-labelled PEX5 showed truncation of the 100 kDa form at the N-terminal side by unknown parasite proteases, giving rise to the 72 kDa form which remains functional for PTS1 binding. The relevance of these observations is discussed.

  2. No gold standard estimation of the sensitivity and specificity of two molecular diagnostic protocols for Trypanosoma brucei spp. in Western Kenya.

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    Barend Mark de Clare Bronsvoort

    Full Text Available African animal trypanosomiasis is caused by a range of tsetse transmitted protozoan parasites includingTrypanosoma vivax, Trypanosoma congolense and Trypansoma brucei. In Western Kenya and other parts of East Africa two subspecies of T. brucei, T.b. brucei and the zoonoticT.b. rhodesiense, co-circulate in livestock. A range of polymerase chain reactions (PCR have been developed as important molecular diagnostic tools for epidemiological investigations of T. brucei s.l. in the animal reservoir and of its zoonotic potential. Quantification of the relative performance of different diagnostic PCRs is essential to ensure comparability of studies. This paper describes an evaluation of two diagnostic test systems for T. brucei using a T. brucei s.l. specific PCR [1] and a single nested PCR targeting the Internal Transcribed Spacer (ITS regions of trypanosome ribosomal DNA [2]. A Bayesian formulation of the Hui-Walter latent class model was employed to estimate their test performance in the absence of a gold standard test for detecting T.brucei s.l. infections in ear-vein blood samples from cattle, pig, sheep and goat populations in Western Kenya, stored on Whatman FTA cards. The results indicate that the system employing the T. brucei s.l. specific PCR (Se1=0.760 had a higher sensitivity than the ITS-PCR (Se2=0.640; both have high specificity (Sp1=0.998; Sp2=0.997. The true prevalences for livestock populations were estimated (pcattle=0.091, ppigs=0.066, pgoats=0.005, psheep=0.006, taking into account the uncertainties in the specificity and sensitivity of the two test systems. Implications of test performance include the required survey sample size; due to its higher sensitivity and specificity, the T. brucei s.l. specific PCR requires a consistently smaller sample size than the ITS-PCR for the detection of T. brucei s.l. However the ITS-PCR is able to simultaneously screen samples for other pathogenic trypanosomes and may thus be, overall, a better

  3. Scanning and three-dimensional electron microscopy methods for the study of Trypanosoma brucei and Leishmania mexicana flagella.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gluenz, Eva; Wheeler, Richard John; Hughes, Louise; Vaughan, Sue

    2015-01-01

    Three-dimensional electron microscopy tools have revolutionized our understanding of cell structure and molecular complexes in biology. Here, we describe methods for studying flagellar ultrastructure and biogenesis in two unicellular parasites-Trypanosoma brucei and Leishmania mexicana. We describe methods for the preparation of these parasites for scanning electron microscopy cellular electron tomography, and serial block face scanning electron microscopy (SBFSEM). These parasites have a highly ordered cell shape and form, with a defined positioning of internal cytoskeletal structures and organelles. We show how knowledge of these can be used to dissect cell cycles in both parasites and identify the old flagellum from the new in T. brucei. Finally, we demonstrate the use of SBFSEM three-dimensional models for analysis of individual whole cells, demonstrating the excellent potential this technique has for future studies of mutant cell lines.

  4. Inhibitors of the mitochondrial cytochrome b-c1 complex inhibit the cyanide-insensitive respiration of Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turrens, J F; Bickar, D; Lehninger, A L

    1986-06-01

    The cyanide-insensitive respiration of bloodstream trypomastigote forms of Trypanosoma brucei (75 +/- 8 nmol O2 min-1(mg protein)-1) is completely inhibited by the mitochondrial ubiquinone-like inhibitors 2-hydroxy-3-undecyl-1,4-naphthoquinone (UHNQ) and 5-n-undecyl-6-hydroxy-4,7-dioxobenzothiazole (UHDBT). The Ki values for UHDBT (30 nM) and UHNQ (2 microM) are much lower than the reported Ki for salicylhydroxamic acid (SHAM) (5 microM), a widely used inhibitor of the cyanide-insensitive oxidase. UHNQ also stimulated the glycerol-3-phosphate-dependent reduction of phenazine methosulfate, demonstrating that the site of UHNQ inhibition is on the terminal oxidase of the cyanide-insensitive respiration of T. brucei. These results suggest that a ubiquinone-like compound may act as an electron carrier between the two enzymatic components of the cyanide-insensitive glycerol-3-phosphate oxidase.

  5. T. brucei infection reduces B lymphopoiesis in bone marrow and truncates compensatory splenic lymphopoiesis through transitional B-cell apoptosis.

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    Viki Bockstal

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available African trypanosomes of the Trypanosoma brucei species are extracellular protozoan parasites that cause the deadly disease African trypanosomiasis in humans and contribute to the animal counterpart, Nagana. Trypanosome clearance from the bloodstream is mediated by antibodies specific for their Variant Surface Glycoprotein (VSG coat antigens. However, T. brucei infection induces polyclonal B cell activation, B cell clonal exhaustion, sustained depletion of mature splenic Marginal Zone B (MZB and Follicular B (FoB cells, and destruction of the B-cell memory compartment. To determine how trypanosome infection compromises the humoral immune defense system we used a C57BL/6 T. brucei AnTat 1.1 mouse model and multicolor flow cytometry to document B cell development and maturation during infection. Our results show a more than 95% reduction in B cell precursor numbers from the CLP, pre-pro-B, pro-B, pre-B and immature B cell stages in the bone marrow. In the spleen, T. brucei induces extramedullary B lymphopoiesis as evidenced by significant increases in HSC-LMPP, CLP, pre-pro-B, pro-B and pre-B cell populations. However, final B cell maturation is abrogated by infection-induced apoptosis of transitional B cells of both the T1 and T2 populations which is not uniquely dependent on TNF-, Fas-, or prostaglandin-dependent death pathways. Results obtained from ex vivo co-cultures of living bloodstream form trypanosomes and splenocytes demonstrate that trypanosome surface coat-dependent contact with T1/2 B cells triggers their deletion. We conclude that infection-induced and possibly parasite-contact dependent deletion of transitional B cells prevents replenishment of mature B cell compartments during infection thus contributing to a loss of the host's capacity to sustain antibody responses against recurring parasitemic waves.

  6. Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense infection in a German traveller returning from the Masai Mara area, Kenya, January 2012.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolf, T; Wichelhaus, T; Gottig, S; Kleine, C; Brodt, H R; Just-Nuebling, G

    2012-03-08

    In January 2012, a case of Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT) has been identified in Germany in a traveller returning from the Masai Mara area in Kenya. The 62-year-old man had travelled to the Masai Mara game park from 18 to 19 January 2012 and developed fever on 28 January. The infection with Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense was confirmed by laboratory testing three days hereafter.

  7. Evolutionary consequences of a large duplication event in Trypanosoma brucei: Chromosomes 4 and 8 are partial duplicons

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    Jackson Andrew P

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Gene order along the genome sequence of the human parasite Trypanosoma brucei provides evidence for a 0.5 Mb duplication, comprising the 3' regions of chromosomes 4 and 8. Here, the principal aim was to examine the contribution made by this duplication event to the T. brucei genome sequence, emphasising the consequences for gene content and the evolutionary change subsequently experienced by paralogous gene copies. The duplicated region may be browsed online at http://www.genedb.org/genedb/tryp/48dup_image.jsp Results Comparisons of trypanosomatid genomes demonstrated widespread gene loss from each duplicon, but also showed that 47% of duplicated genes were retained on both chromosomes as paralogous loci. Secreted and surface-expressed genes were over-represented among retained paralogs, reflecting a bias towards important factors at the host-parasite interface, and consistent with a dosage-balance hypothesis. Genetic divergence in both coding and regulatory regions of retained paralogs was bimodal, with a deficit in moderately divergent paralogs; in particular, non-coding sequences were either conserved or entirely remodelled. The conserved paralogs included examples of remarkable sequence conservation, but also considerable divergence of both coding and regulatory regions. Sequence divergence typically displayed strong negative selection; but several features, such as asymmetric evolutionary rates, positively-selected codons and other non-neutral substitutions, suggested that divergence of some paralogs was driven by functional change. The absence of orthologs to retained paralogs in T. congolense indicated that the duplication event was specific to T. brucei. Conclusion The duplication of this chromosomal region doubled the dosage of many genes. Rather than creating 'more of the same', these results show that paralogs were structurally modified according to various evolutionary trajectories. The retention of paralogs, and

  8. Chemopreventive effect of methanolic extract of Azadirachta indica on experimental Trypanosoma brucei induced oxidative stress in dogs

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    Temidayo O Omobowale

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: The medicinal properties of Azadirachta indica have been harnessed for many years in the treatment of many diseases in both humans and animals. Materials and Methods: Twenty-five apparently healthy dogs weighing between 3 and 8 kg were randomly divided into five groups with five dogs in each group. Ameliorative effect of A. indica on erythrocyte antioxidant status and markers of oxidative stress were assessed. Liver and kidney function tests were also performed. Results: Pre-treatment with methanolic extract of Azadirachta indica (MEAI at different doses did not significantly alter the values of alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase and alkaline phosphatase activity in Trypanosoma brucei infection. Although, serum creatinine significantly (P 0.05 difference compared to the values obtained in pre-treated animals. Pre-treatment with 100 mg/kg and 200 mg/kg of A. indica significantly (P < 0.05 decreased serum myeloperoxidase activity at 2 weeks post-infection with T. brucei. Conclusion: From this study, MEAI showed significant ability to attenuate oxidative stress and inflammation during experimental T. brucei infection.

  9. Quantitative Mass Spectrometry-Based Analysis of β-D-Glucosyl-5-Hydroxymethyluracil in Genomic DNA of Trypanosoma brucei

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Shuo; Ji, Debin; Cliffe, Laura; Sabatini, Robert; Wang, Yinsheng

    2014-10-01

    β-D-glucosyl-5-hydroxymethyluracil (base J) is a hyper-modified nucleobase found in the nuclear DNA of kinetoplastid parasites. With replacement of a fraction of thymine in DNA, J is localized primarily in telomeric regions of all organisms carrying this modified base. The biosynthesis of J occurs in two putative steps: first, a specific thymine in DNA is recognized and converted into 5-hydroxymethyluracil (5-HmU) by J-binding proteins (JBP1 and JBP2); a glucosyl transferase (GT) subsequently glucosylates the 5-HmU to yield J. Although several recent studies revealed the roles of internal J in regulating transcription in kinetoplastids, functions of telomeric J and proteins involved in J synthesis remain elusive. Assessing the functions of base J and understanding fully its biosynthesis necessitate the measurement of its level in cells and organisms. In this study, we reported a reversed-phase HPLC coupled with tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) method, together with the use of a surrogate internal standard (β-D-glucosyl-5-hydroxymethyl-2'-deoxycytidine, 5-gHmdC), for the accurate detection of β-D-glucosyl-5-hydroxymethyl-2'-deoxyuridine (dJ) in Trypanosoma brucei DNA. For comparison, we also measured the level of the precursor for dJ synthesis [i.e. 5-hydroxymethyl-2'-deoxyuridine (5-HmdU)]. We found that base J was not detectable in the JBP-null cells whereas it replaced approximately 0.5% thymine in wild-type cells, which was accompanied with a markedly decreased level of 5-HmdU in JBP1/JBP2-null strain relative to the wild-type strain. These results provided direct evidence supporting that JBP proteins play an important role in oxidizing thymidine to form 5-HmdU, which facilitated the generation of dJ. This is the first report about the application of LC-MS/MS for the quantification of base J. The analytical method built a solid foundation for dissecting the molecular mechanisms of J biosynthesis and assessing the biological functions of base J in the

  10. Changes in blood sugar levels of rats experimentally infected withTrypanosoma brucei and treated with imidocarb dipropionate and diminazene aceturate

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    Nwoha Rosemary Ijeoma Ogechi; Omamegbe Joseph Omalathebu

    2016-01-01

    Objective:To determine the effect ofTrypanosoma brucei (T. brucei) on blood sugar level of infected rats. Methods: The experiment was done with 42 albino rats grouped into 3 groups of 14 members each. Group A was uninfected (control group), Group B was infected withT. brucei and treated with diminazene aceturate, and Group C was infected withT. brucei and treated with imidocarb dipropionate. Blood samples were collected from the media canthus of the experimental rats on Days 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 for the assessment of change in blood sugar levels. The blood sugar levels were determined with a glucometer (Accu-chek active serialNo.GN:10023338). Results: By 4 to 5 days post infection, there was a significant increase (P 0.05) was observed in the groups when compared with the control group till Day 12 of the experiment. Conclusions:T. brucei caused a significant increase in blood sugar of infected rats.

  11. Isothermal microcalorimetry, a new tool to monitor drug action against Trypanosoma brucei and Plasmodium falciparum.

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    Tanja Wenzler

    Full Text Available Isothermal microcalorimetry is an established tool to measure heat flow of physical, chemical or biological processes. The metabolism of viable cells produces heat, and if sufficient cells are present, their heat production can be assessed by this method. In this study, we investigated the heat flow of two medically important protozoans, Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense and Plasmodium falciparum. Heat flow signals obtained for these pathogens allowed us to monitor parasite growth on a real-time basis as the signals correlated with the number of viable cells. To showcase the potential of microcalorimetry for measuring drug action on pathogenic organisms, we tested the method with three antitrypanosomal drugs, melarsoprol, suramin and pentamidine and three antiplasmodial drugs, chloroquine, artemether and dihydroartemisinin, each at two concentrations on the respective parasite. With the real time measurement, inhibition was observed immediately by a reduced heat flow compared to that in untreated control samples. The onset of drug action, the degree of inhibition and the time to death of the parasite culture could conveniently be monitored over several days. Microcalorimetry is a valuable element to be added to the toolbox for drug discovery for protozoal diseases such as human African trypanosomiasis and malaria. The method could probably be adapted to other protozoan parasites, especially those growing extracellularly.

  12. Flux Analysis of the Trypanosoma brucei Glycolysis Based on a Multiobjective-Criteria Bioinformatic Approach

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    Amine Ghozlane

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Trypanosoma brucei is a protozoan parasite of major of interest in discovering new genes for drug targets. This parasite alternates its life cycle between the mammal host(s (bloodstream form and the insect vector (procyclic form, with two divergent glucose metabolism amenable to in vitro culture. While the metabolic network of the bloodstream forms has been well characterized, the flux distribution between the different branches of the glucose metabolic network in the procyclic form has not been addressed so far. We present a computational analysis (called Metaboflux that exploits the metabolic topology of the procyclic form, and allows the incorporation of multipurpose experimental data to increase the biological relevance of the model. The alternatives resulting from the structural complexity of networks are formulated as an optimization problem solved by a metaheuristic where experimental data are modeled in a multiobjective function. Our results show that the current metabolic model is in agreement with experimental data and confirms the observed high metabolic flexibility of glucose metabolism. In addition, Metaboflux offers a rational explanation for the high flexibility in the ratio between final products from glucose metabolism, thsat is, flux redistribution through the malic enzyme steps.

  13. The Role of Folate Transport in Antifolate Drug Action in Trypanosoma brucei*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dewar, Simon; Sienkiewicz, Natasha; Ong, Han B.; Wall, Richard J.; Horn, David

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to identify and characterize mechanisms of resistance to antifolate drugs in African trypanosomes. Genome-wide RNAi library screens were undertaken in bloodstream form Trypanosoma brucei exposed to the antifolates methotrexate and raltitrexed. In conjunction with drug susceptibility and folate transport studies, RNAi knockdown was used to validate the functions of the putative folate transporters. The transport kinetics of folate and methotrexate were further characterized in whole cells. RNA interference target sequencing experiments identified a tandem array of genes encoding a folate transporter family, TbFT1–3, as major contributors to antifolate drug uptake. RNAi knockdown of TbFT1–3 substantially reduced folate transport into trypanosomes and reduced the parasite's susceptibly to the classical antifolates methotrexate and raltitrexed. In contrast, knockdown of TbFT1–3 increased susceptibly to the non-classical antifolates pyrimethamine and nolatrexed. Both folate and methotrexate transport were inhibited by classical antifolates but not by non-classical antifolates or biopterin. Thus, TbFT1–3 mediates the uptake of folate and classical antifolates in trypanosomes, and TbFT1–3 loss-of-function is a mechanism of antifolate drug resistance. PMID:27703008

  14. Crystal structures and inhibition of Trypanosoma brucei hypoxanthine–guanine phosphoribosyltransferase

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terán, David; Hocková, Dana; Česnek, Michal; Zíková, Alena; Naesens, Lieve; Keough, Dianne T.; Guddat, Luke W.

    2016-01-01

    Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT) is a life-threatening infectious disease caused by the protozoan parasite, Trypanosoma brucei (Tbr). Due to the debilitating side effects of the current therapeutics and the emergence of resistance to these drugs, new medications for this disease need to be developed. One potential new drug target is 6-oxopurine phosphoribosyltransferase (PRT), an enzyme central to the purine salvage pathway and whose activity is critical for the production of the nucleotides (GMP and IMP) required for DNA/RNA synthesis within this protozoan parasite. Here, the first crystal structures of this enzyme have been determined, these in complex with GMP and IMP and with three acyclic nucleoside phosphonate (ANP) inhibitors. The Ki values for GMP and IMP are 30.5 μM and 77 μM, respectively. Two of the ANPs have Ki values considerably lower than for the nucleotides, 2.3 μM (with guanine as base) and 15.8 μM (with hypoxanthine as base). The crystal structures show that when two of the ANPs bind, they induce an unusual conformation change to the loop where the reaction product, pyrophosphate, is expected to bind. This and other structural differences between the Tbr and human enzymes suggest selective inhibitors for the Tbr enzyme can be designed. PMID:27786284

  15. Association of a novel preribosomal complex in Trypanosoma brucei determined by fluorescence resonance energy transfer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Lei; Ciganda, Martin; Williams, Noreen

    2013-02-01

    We have previously reported that the trypanosome-specific proteins P34 and P37 form a unique preribosomal complex with ribosomal protein L5 and 5S rRNA in the nucleoplasm. We hypothesize that this novel trimolecular complex is necessary for stabilizing 5S rRNA in Trypanosoma brucei and is essential for the survival of the parasite. In vitro quantitative analysis of the association between the proteins L5 and P34 is fundamental to our understanding of this novel complex and thus our ability to exploit its unique characteristics. Here we used in vitro fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) to analyze the association between L5 and P34. First, we demonstrated that FRET can be used to confirm the association between L5 and P34. We then determined that the binding constant for L5 and P34 is 0.60 ± 0.03 μM, which is in the range of protein-protein binding constants for RNA binding proteins. In addition, we used FRET to identify the critical regions of L5 and P34 involved in the protein-protein association. We found that the N-terminal APK-rich domain and RNA recognition motif (RRM) of P34 and the L18 domain of L5 are important for the association of the two proteins with each other. These results provide us with the framework for the discovery of ways to disrupt this essential complex.

  16. Fluorinated Sterols Are Suicide Inhibitors of Ergosterol Biosynthesis and Growth in Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leaver, David J; Patkar, Presheet; Singha, Ujjal K; Miller, Matthew B; Haubrich, Brad A; Chaudhuri, Minu; Nes, W David

    2015-10-22

    Trypanosoma brucei, the causal agent for sleeping sickness, depends on ergosterol for growth. Here, we describe the effects of a mechanism-based inhibitor, 26-fluorolanosterol (26FL), which converts in vivo to a fluorinated substrate of the sterol C24-methyltransferase essential for sterol methylation and function of ergosterol, and missing from the human host. 26FL showed potent inhibition of ergosterol biosynthesis and growth of procyclic and bloodstream forms while having no effect on cholesterol biosynthesis or growth of human epithelial kidney cells. During exposure of cloned TbSMT to 26-fluorocholesta-5,7,24-trienol, the enzyme is gradually killed as a consequence of the covalent binding of the intermediate C25 cation to the active site (kcat/kinact = 0.26 min(-1)/0.24 min(-1); partition ratio of 1.08), whereas 26FL is non-productively bound. These results demonstrate that poisoning of ergosterol biosynthesis by a 26-fluorinated Δ(24)-sterol is a promising strategy for developing a new treatment for trypanosomiasis.

  17. Parasite development and host responses during the establishment of Trypanosoma brucei infection transmitted by tsetse fly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barry, J D; Emergy, D L

    1984-02-01

    Following inoculation of Trypanosoma brucei into large mammals by the tsetse fly a local skin reaction, the 'chancre', develops due to trypanosome proliferation. We have cannulated the afferent and efferent lymphatics of the draining lymph node in goats and examined the onset of a cellular reaction, the emigration of the parasite from the chancre and the development of both antigenic variation and the specific immune response. The chancre first became detectable by day 3 post-infection, peaked by day 6 and then subsided. Lymphocyte output increased 6- to 8-fold by day 10 and the number of lymphoblasts increased 50-fold in this period. Both then declined. Trypanosomes were detected in lymph 1-2 days before the chancre, peaked by days 5-6, declined during development of the chancre and then peaked again. The bloodstream population appeared by days 4-5 and displayed different kinetics from that in lymph. Recirculation of parasites through the lymphatics ensued. Lymph-borne trypanosome populations were highly pleomorphic. Parasites in lymph expressed firstly a mixture of the Variable Antigen Types (VATs) which are found characteristically in the tsetse fly, this being followed by a mixture of other VATs. The two groups overlapped in appearance. In the bloodstream the same sequence of events occurred although 2 or 3 days later. The specific antibody response, as measured by radioimmunoassay and agglutination, arose within a few days of the first detection of each VAT. Activities appeared first in the lymph and then in plasma.

  18. Synchronous expression of individual metacyclic variant surface glycoprotein genes in Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramey-Butler, Kiantra; Ullu, Elisabetta; Kolev, Nikolay G; Tschudi, Christian

    2015-01-01

    One distinctive feature of the Trypanosoma brucei life cycle is the presence of two discrete populations that are based on differential expression of variant surface glycoproteins (VSGs). Both are adapted to the environmental pressures they face and more importantly, both contribute directly to transmission. Metacyclics in the tsetse fly enable transmission to a new mammalian host, whereas bloodstream trypanosomes must avoid immune destruction to the extent that sufficient numbers are available for transmission, when the insect vector takes a blood meal. At present, there are few investigations on the molecular aspects of parasite biology in the tsetse vector and specifically about the activation of metacyclic VSG gene expression. Here we used an established in vitro differentiation system based on the overexpression of the RNA-binding protein 6 (RBP6), to monitor two metacyclic VSGs (VSG 397 and VSG 653) during development from procyclics to infectious metacyclic forms. We observed that activation of these two mVSGs was simultaneous both at the transcript and protein level, and manifested by the appearance of only one of the mVSGs in individual cells.

  19. Identification of a new EF-hand superfamily member from Trypanosoma brucei

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, S.; Kretsinger, R. H.; Campbell, D. A.

    1992-01-01

    We identified several open reading frames between the regions encoding calmodulin and ubiquitin-EP52/1 in the genome of Trypanosoma brucei. One of these, EFH5, encodes a protein 192 amino acids long. The EFH5 transcript is present in poly(A)+ mRNA and is present at similar levels in the mammalian bloodstream form and the insect procyclic form. EFH5 contains four EF-hand homolog domains, two of which are inferred to bind Ca2+ ions. We expressed EFH5 as a fusion protein in Escherichia coli and demonstrated calcium-binding activity of the fusion protein using the 45Ca-overlay technique. The function of EFH5 remains unknown; however, as the fourth EF-hand homolog identified in trypanosomes, it attests to the broad range of functions assumed by calcium functioning as a second messenger. EFH5, which is most closely related to LAV1-2 from Physarum, represents a distinct subfamily among the EF-hand-containing proteins.

  20. Rediscovery of Trypanosoma (Pycnomonas) suis, a tsetse-transmitted trypanosome closely related to T. brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hutchinson, Rachel; Gibson, Wendy

    2015-12-01

    The African tsetse-transmitted trypanosomes are considered to be a well-known group of parasitic protozoa, but in 2008 a novel and distinctive trypanosome related to Trypanosoma brucei was discovered among tsetse isolates from Msubugwe in Tanzania. The host range, distribution and potential pathogenicity of this new trypanosome remain to be elucidated; such studies would be facilitated by a sensitive and specific identification method. Here, we identified two highly repetitive elements in the genome of the new trypanosome: a 177 bp repeat, which was located predominantly on the highly abundant minichromosomes, and a 138 bp repeat, which was widely dispersed in the genome. A PCR test based on each repeat was specific for the new trypanosome and sensitive to Trypanosoma (Pycnomonas) suis. We also present data on the molecular karyotype and spliced leader (SL, miniexon) repeat of the new trypanosome, both of which distinguish T. suis from other, better-known African tsetse-transmitted trypanosomes. The rediscovery of T. suis opens new lines of research into the evolution and biology of the African trypanosomes.

  1. New functions for parts of the Krebs cycle in procyclic Trypanosoma brucei, a cycle not operating as a cycle.

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    van Weelden, Susanne W H; van Hellemond, Jaap J; Opperdoes, Fred R; Tielens, Aloysius G M

    2005-04-01

    We investigated whether substrate availability influences the type of energy metabolism in procyclic Trypanosoma brucei. We show that absence of glycolytic substrates (glucose and glycerol) does not induce a shift from a fermentative metabolism to complete oxidation of substrates. We also show that glucose (and even glycolysis) is not essential for normal functioning and proliferation of pleomorphic procyclic T. brucei cells. Furthermore, absence of glucose did not result in increased degradation of amino acids. Variations in availability of glucose and glycerol did result, however, in adaptations in metabolism in such a way that the glycosome was always in redox balance. We argue that it is likely that, in procyclic cells, phosphoglycerate kinase is located not only in the cytosol, but also inside glycosomes, as otherwise an ATP deficit would occur in this organelle. We demonstrate that procyclic T. brucei uses parts of the Krebs cycle for purposes other than complete degradation of mitochondrial substrates. We suggest that citrate synthase plus pyruvate dehydrogenase and malate dehydrogenase are used to transport acetyl-CoA units from the mitochondrion to the cytosol for the biosynthesis of fatty acids, a process we show to occur in proliferating procyclic cells. The part of the Krebs cycle consisting of alpha-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase and succinyl-CoA synthetase was used for the degradation of proline and glutamate to succinate. We also demonstrate that the subsequent enzymes of the Krebs cycle, succinate dehydrogenase and fumarase, are most likely used for conversion of succinate into malate, which can then be used in gluconeogenesis.

  2. Structure and reactivity of Trypanosoma brucei pteridine reductase: inhibition by the archetypal antifolate methotrexate.

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    Dawson, Alice; Gibellini, Federica; Sienkiewicz, Natasha; Tulloch, Lindsay B; Fyfe, Paul K; McLuskey, Karen; Fairlamb, Alan H; Hunter, William N

    2006-09-01

    The protozoan Trypanosoma brucei has a functional pteridine reductase (TbPTR1), an NADPH-dependent short-chain reductase that participates in the salvage of pterins, which are essential for parasite growth. PTR1 displays broad-spectrum activity with pterins and folates, provides a metabolic bypass for inhibition of the trypanosomatid dihydrofolate reductase and therefore compromises the use of antifolates for treatment of trypanosomiasis. Catalytic properties of recombinant TbPTR1 and inhibition by the archetypal antifolate methotrexate have been characterized and the crystal structure of the ternary complex with cofactor NADP+ and the inhibitor determined at 2.2 A resolution. This enzyme shares 50% amino acid sequence identity with Leishmania major PTR1 (LmPTR1) and comparisons show that the architecture of the cofactor binding site, and the catalytic centre are highly conserved, as are most interactions with the inhibitor. However, specific amino acid differences, in particular the placement of Trp221 at the side of the active site, and adjustment of the beta6-alpha6 loop and alpha6 helix at one side of the substrate-binding cleft significantly reduce the size of the substrate binding site of TbPTR1 and alter the chemical properties compared with LmPTR1. A reactive Cys168, within the active site cleft, in conjunction with the C-terminus carboxyl group and His267 of a partner subunit forms a triad similar to the catalytic component of cysteine proteases. TbPTR1 therefore offers novel structural features to exploit in the search for inhibitors of therapeutic value against African trypanosomiasis.

  3. Loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP method for rapid detection of Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense.

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    Zablon Kithinji Njiru

    Full Text Available Loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP of DNA is a novel technique that rapidly amplifies target DNA under isothermal conditions. In the present study, a LAMP test was designed from the serum resistance-associated (SRA gene of Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense, the cause of the acute form of African sleeping sickness, and used to detect parasite DNA from processed and heat-treated infected blood samples. The SRA gene is specific to T. b. rhodesiense and has been shown to confer resistance to lysis by normal human serum. The assay was performed at 62 degrees C for 1 h, using six primers that recognised eight targets. The template was varying concentrations of trypanosome DNA and supernatant from heat-treated infected blood samples. The resulting amplicons were detected using SYTO-9 fluorescence dye in a real-time thermocycler, visual observation after the addition of SYBR Green I, and gel electrophoresis. DNA amplification was detected within 35 min. The SRA LAMP test had an unequivocal detection limit of one pg of purified DNA (equivalent to 10 trypanosomes/ml and 0.1 pg (1 trypanosome/ml using heat-treated buffy coat, while the detection limit for conventional SRA PCR was approximately 1,000 trypanosomes/ml. The expected LAMP amplicon was confirmed through restriction enzyme RsaI digestion, identical melt curves, and sequence analysis. The reproducibility of the SRA LAMP assay using water bath and heat-processed template, and the ease in results readout show great potential for the diagnosis of T. b. rhodesiense in endemic regions.

  4. A monoclonal antibody marker for the exclusion-zone filaments of Trypanosoma brucei

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    Decossas Marion

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Trypanosoma brucei is a haemoflagellate pathogen of man, wild animals and domesticated livestock in central and southern Africa. In all life cycle stages this parasite has a single mitochondrion that contains a uniquely organised genome that is condensed into a flat disk-like structure called the kinetoplast. The kinetoplast is essential for insect form procyclic cells and therefore is a potential drug target. The kinetoplast is unique in nature because it consists of novel structural proteins and thousands of circular, interlocking, DNA molecules (kDNA. Secondly, kDNA replication is critically timed to coincide with nuclear S phase and new flagellum biogenesis. Thirdly, the kinetoplast is physically attached to the flagellum basal bodies via a structure called the tripartite attachment complex (TAC. The TAC consists of unilateral filaments (within the mitochondrion matrix, differentiated mitochondrial membranes and exclusion-zone filaments that extend from the distal end of the basal bodies. To date only one protein, p166, has been identified to be a component of the TAC. Results In the work presented here we provide data based on a novel EM technique developed to label and characterise cytoskeleton structures in permeabilised cells without extraction of mitochondrion membranes. We use this protocol to provide data on a new monoclonal antibody reagent (Mab 22 and illustrate the precise localisation of basal body-mitochondrial linker proteins. Mab 22 binds to these linker proteins (exclusion-zone filaments and provides a new tool for the characterisation of cytoskeleton mediated kinetoplast segregation. Conclusion The antigen(s recognised by Mab 22 are cytoskeletal, insensitive to extraction by high concentrations of non-ionic detergent, extend from the proximal region of basal bodies and bind to the outer mitochondrial membrane. This protein(s is the first component of the TAC exclusion-zone fibres to be identified. Mab 22

  5. Enhanced succinic acid production in Aspergillus saccharolyticus by heterologous expression of fumarate reductase from Trypanosoma brucei.

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    Yang, Lei; Lübeck, Mette; Ahring, Birgitte K; Lübeck, Peter S

    2016-02-01

    Aspergillus saccharolyticus exhibits great potential as a cell factory for industrial production of dicarboxylic acids. In the analysis of the organic acid profile, A. saccharolyticus was cultivated in an acid production medium using two different pH conditions. The specific activities of the enzymes, pyruvate carboxylase (PYC), malate dehydrogenase (MDH), and fumarase (FUM), involved in the reductive tricarboxylic acid (rTCA) branch, were examined and compared in cells harvested from the acid production medium and a complete medium. The results showed that ambient pH had a significant impact on the pattern and the amount of organic acids produced by A. saccharolyticus. The wild-type strain produced higher amount of malic acid and succinic acid in the pH buffered condition (pH 6.5) compared with the pH non-buffered condition. The enzyme assays showed that the rTCA branch was active in the acid production medium as well as the complete medium, but the measured enzyme activities were different depending on the media. Furthermore, a soluble NADH-dependent fumarate reductase gene (frd) from Trypanosoma brucei was inserted and expressed in A. saccharolyticus. The expression of the frd gene led to an enhanced production of succinic acid in frd transformants compared with the wild-type in both pH buffered and pH non-buffered conditions with highest amount produced in the pH buffered condition (16.2 ± 0.5 g/L). This study demonstrates the feasibility of increasing succinic acid production through the cytosolic reductive pathway by genetic engineering in A. saccharolyticus.

  6. Trypanosoma brucei RNA binding proteins p34 and p37 mediate NOPP44/46 cellular localization via the exportin 1 nuclear export pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hellman, Kristina; Prohaska, Kimberly; Williams, Noreen

    2007-12-01

    We have previously identified and characterized two novel nuclear RNA binding proteins, p34 and p37, which have been shown to interact with a family of nucleolar phosphoproteins, NOPP44/46, in Trypanosoma brucei. These proteins are nearly identical, the major difference being an 18-amino-acid insert in the N terminus of p37. In order to characterize the interaction between p34 and p37 and NOPP44/46, we have utilized an RNA interference (RNAi) cell line that specifically targets p34 and p37. Within these RNAi cells, we detected a disruption of a higher-molecular-weight complex containing NOPP44/46, as well as a dramatic increase in nuclear NOPP44/46 protein levels. We demonstrated that no change occurred in NOPP44/46 mRNA steady-state levels or stability, nor was there a change in cellular protein levels. These results led us to investigate whether p34 and p37 regulate NOPP44/46 cellular localization. Examination of the p34 and p37 amino acid sequences revealed a leucine-rich nuclear export signal, which interacts with the nuclear export factor exportin 1. Immune capture experiments demonstrated that p34, p37, and NOPP44/46 associate with exportin 1. When these experiments were performed with p34/p37 RNAi cells, NOPP44/46 no longer associated with exportin 1. Sequential immune capture experiments demonstrated that p34, p37, NOPP44/46, and exportin 1 exist in a common complex. Inhibiting exportin 1-mediated nuclear export led to an increase in nuclear NOPP44/46 proteins, indicating that they are exported from the nucleus via this pathway. Together, our results demonstrate that p34 and p37 regulate NOPP44/46 cellular localization by facilitating their association with exportin 1.

  7. Micro RNA expression profiles in peripheral blood cells of rats that were experimentally infected with Trypanosoma congolense and different Trypanosoma brucei subspecies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simo, Gustave; Lueong, Smiths; Grebaut, Pascal; Guny, Gerard; Hoheisel, Jörg D

    2015-08-01

    To identify miRNAs whose expression are differentially regulated during trypanosome infections a microarray targeting more than 600 rat miRNA was used to analyze the miRNA expression profiles between uninfected rats and animals infected by Trypanosoma congolense and Trypanosoma brucei s.l. The potential targets of dysregulated miRNAs as well as their biological pathways and functions were predicted using several bioinformatics software tools. Irrespective of the infecting trypanosome species, eight miRNAs (seven up- and one down-regulated) were dysregulated during infections. Moreover, other miRNAs were differentially regulated in rats infected by specific trypanosome species. Functional analyses of differentially regulated miRNAs indicated their involvement in diverse biological processes. Among these, transcription repressor activity, gene expression control as well as protein transporter activity were predominant. Gene Ontology and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes analysis of dysregulated miRNAs revealed their involvement in several biological pathways and disease conditions. This suggests possible modulation of such pathways following trypanosome infection; for example, the MAPK signaling pathway which is known to play vital roles in apoptosis, innate immune response and response to viral infections was highly affected. Axon guidance was equally highly impacted and may indicate a cross reactivity between pathogen proteins and guidance molecules representing one pathological mechanism as it has been observed with influenza HA. Furthermore, Ingenuity pathway analyses of dysregulated miRNAs and potential targets indicated strong association with inflammatory responses, cell death and survival as well as infectious diseases. The data generated here provide valuable information to understand the regulatory function of miRNAs during trypanosome infections. They improved our knowledge on host-parasite cross-talks and provide a framework for investigations to

  8. The F(0F(1-ATP synthase complex contains novel subunits and is essential for procyclic Trypanosoma brucei.

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    Alena Zíková

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available The mitochondrial F(0F(1 ATP synthase is an essential multi-subunit protein complex in the vast majority of eukaryotes but little is known about its composition and role in Trypanosoma brucei, an early diverged eukaryotic pathogen. We purified the F(0F(1 ATP synthase by a combination of affinity purification, immunoprecipitation and blue-native gel electrophoresis and characterized its composition and function. We identified 22 proteins of which five are related to F(1 subunits, three to F(0 subunits, and 14 which have no obvious homology to proteins outside the kinetoplastids. RNAi silencing of expression of the F(1 alpha subunit or either of the two novel proteins showed that they are each essential for the viability of procyclic (insect stage cells and are important for the structural integrity of the F(0F(1-ATP synthase complex. We also observed a dramatic decrease in ATP production by oxidative phosphorylation after silencing expression of each of these proteins while substrate phosphorylation was not severely affected. Our procyclic T. brucei cells were sensitive to the ATP synthase inhibitor oligomycin even in the presence of glucose contrary to earlier reports. Hence, the two novel proteins appear essential for the structural organization of the functional complex and regulation of mitochondrial energy generation in these organisms is more complicated than previously thought.

  9. In Silico Identification and in Vitro Activity of Novel Natural Inhibitors of Trypanosoma brucei Glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate-dehydrogenase

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    Fabian C. Herrmann

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available As part of our ongoing efforts to identify natural products with activity against pathogens causing neglected tropical diseases, we are currently performing an extensive screening of natural product (NP databases against a multitude of protozoan parasite proteins. Within this project, we screened a database of NPs from a commercial supplier, AnalytiCon Discovery (Potsdam, Germany, against Trypanosoma brucei glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (TbGAPDH, a glycolytic enzyme whose inhibition deprives the parasite of energy supply. NPs acting as potential inhibitors of the mentioned enzyme were identified using a pharmacophore-based virtual screening and subsequent docking of the identified hits into the active site of interest. In a set of 700 structures chosen for the screening, 13 (1.9% were predicted to possess significant affinity towards the enzyme and were therefore tested in an in vitro enzyme assay using recombinant TbGAPDH. Nine of these in silico hits (69% showed significant inhibitory activity at 50 µM, of which two geranylated benzophenone derivatives proved to be particularly active with IC50 values below 10 µM. These compounds also showed moderate in vitro activity against T. brucei rhodesiense and may thus represent interesting starting points for further optimization.

  10. SAS-4 Protein in Trypanosoma brucei Controls Life Cycle Transitions by Modulating the Length of the Flagellum Attachment Zone Filament.

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    Hu, Huiqing; Zhou, Qing; Li, Ziyin

    2015-12-18

    The evolutionarily conserved centriole/basal body protein SAS-4 regulates centriole duplication in metazoa and basal body duplication in flagellated and ciliated organisms. Here, we report that the SAS-4 homolog in the flagellated protozoan Trypanosoma brucei, TbSAS-4, plays an unusual role in controlling life cycle transitions by regulating the length of the flagellum attachment zone (FAZ) filament, a specialized cytoskeletal structure required for flagellum adhesion and cell morphogenesis. TbSAS-4 is concentrated at the distal tip of the FAZ filament, and depletion of TbSAS-4 in the trypomastigote form disrupts the elongation of the new FAZ filament, generating cells with a shorter FAZ associated with a longer unattached flagellum and repositioned kinetoplast and basal body, reminiscent of epimastigote-like morphology. Further, we show that TbSAS-4 associates with six additional FAZ tip proteins, and depletion of TbSAS-4 disrupts the enrichment of these FAZ tip proteins at the new FAZ tip, suggesting a role of TbSAS-4 in maintaining the integrity of this FAZ tip protein complex. Together, these results uncover a novel function of TbSAS-4 in regulating the length of the FAZ filament to control basal body positioning and life cycle transitions in T. brucei.

  11. Deviating the level of proliferating cell nuclear antigen in Trypanosoma brucei elicits distinct mechanisms for inhibiting proliferation and cell cycle progression.

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    Valenciano, Ana L; Ramsey, Aaron C; Mackey, Zachary B

    2015-01-01

    The DNA replication machinery is spatially and temporally coordinated in all cells to reproduce a single exact copy of the genome per division, but its regulation in the protozoan parasite Trypanosoma brucei is not well characterized. We characterized the effects of altering the levels of proliferating cell nuclear antigen, a key component of the DNA replication machinery, in bloodstream form T. brucei. This study demonstrated that tight regulation of TbPCNA levels was critical for normal proliferation and DNA replication in the parasite. Depleting TbPCNA mRNA reduced proliferation, severely diminished DNA replication, arrested the synthesis of new DNA and caused the parasites to accumulated in G2/M. Attenuating the parasite by downregulating TbPCNA caused it to become hypersensitive to hydroxyurea. Overexpressing TbPCNA in T. brucei arrested proliferation, inhibited DNA replication and prevented the parasite from exiting G2/M. These results indicate that distinct mechanisms of cell cycle arrest are associated with upregulating or downregulating TbPCNA. The findings of this study validate deregulating intra-parasite levels of TbPCNA as a potential strategy for therapeutically exploiting this target in bloodstream form T. brucei.

  12. Identification and characterization of hundreds of potent and selective inhibitors of Trypanosoma brucei growth from a kinase-targeted library screening campaign.

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    Rosario Diaz

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available In the interest of identification of new kinase-targeting chemotypes for target and pathway analysis and drug discovery in Trypanosomal brucei, a high-throughput screen of 42,444 focused inhibitors from the GlaxoSmithKline screening collection was performed against parasite cell cultures and counter-screened against human hepatocarcinoma (HepG2 cells. In this way, we have identified 797 sub-micromolar inhibitors of T. brucei growth that are at least 100-fold selective over HepG2 cells. Importantly, 242 of these hit compounds acted rapidly in inhibiting cellular growth, 137 showed rapid cidality. A variety of in silico and in vitro physicochemical and drug metabolism properties were assessed, and human kinase selectivity data were obtained, and, based on these data, we prioritized three compounds for pharmacokinetic assessment and demonstrated parasitological cure of a murine bloodstream infection of T. brucei rhodesiense with one of these compounds (NEU-1053. This work represents a successful implementation of a unique industrial-academic collaboration model aimed at identification of high quality inhibitors that will provide the parasitology community with chemical matter that can be utilized to develop kinase-targeting tool compounds. Furthermore these results are expected to provide rich starting points for discovery of kinase-targeting tool compounds for T. brucei, and new HAT therapeutics discovery programs.

  13. Identification and characterization of hundreds of potent and selective inhibitors of Trypanosoma brucei growth from a kinase-targeted library screening campaign.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diaz, Rosario; Luengo-Arratta, Sandra A; Seixas, João D; Amata, Emanuele; Devine, William; Cordon-Obras, Carlos; Rojas-Barros, Domingo I; Jimenez, Elena; Ortega, Fatima; Crouch, Sabrinia; Colmenarejo, Gonzalo; Fiandor, Jose Maria; Martin, Jose Julio; Berlanga, Manuela; Gonzalez, Silvia; Manzano, Pilar; Navarro, Miguel; Pollastri, Michael P

    2014-10-01

    In the interest of identification of new kinase-targeting chemotypes for target and pathway analysis and drug discovery in Trypanosomal brucei, a high-throughput screen of 42,444 focused inhibitors from the GlaxoSmithKline screening collection was performed against parasite cell cultures and counter-screened against human hepatocarcinoma (HepG2) cells. In this way, we have identified 797 sub-micromolar inhibitors of T. brucei growth that are at least 100-fold selective over HepG2 cells. Importantly, 242 of these hit compounds acted rapidly in inhibiting cellular growth, 137 showed rapid cidality. A variety of in silico and in vitro physicochemical and drug metabolism properties were assessed, and human kinase selectivity data were obtained, and, based on these data, we prioritized three compounds for pharmacokinetic assessment and demonstrated parasitological cure of a murine bloodstream infection of T. brucei rhodesiense with one of these compounds (NEU-1053). This work represents a successful implementation of a unique industrial-academic collaboration model aimed at identification of high quality inhibitors that will provide the parasitology community with chemical matter that can be utilized to develop kinase-targeting tool compounds. Furthermore these results are expected to provide rich starting points for discovery of kinase-targeting tool compounds for T. brucei, and new HAT therapeutics discovery programs.

  14. Analysis of cosmid clones of nuclear DNA from Trypanosome brucei shows that the genes for variant surface glycoproteins are clustered in the genome.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    D. Valerio (Dinko); T. de Lange; P. Borst (Piet); F.G. Grosveld (Frank); L.H.T. van der Ploeg

    1982-01-01

    textabstractTrypanosoma brucei contains more than a hundred genes coding for the different variant surface glycoproteins (VSGs). Activation of some of these genes involves the duplication of the gene (the basic copy or BC) and transposition of the duplicate to an expression site (yielding the expres

  15. Excreted/Secreted Proteins from Trypanosome Procyclic Strains

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    Celestine Michelle Atyame Nten

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Trypanosoma secretome was shown to be involved in parasite virulence and is suspected of interfering in parasite life-cycle steps such as establishment in the Glossina midgut, metacyclogenesis. Therefore, we attempted to identify the proteins secreted by procyclic strains of T. brucei gambiense and T. brucei brucei, responsible for human and animal trypanosomiasis, respectively. Using mass spectrometry, 427 and 483 nonredundant proteins were characterized in T. brucei brucei and T. brucei gambiense secretomes, respectively; 35% and 42% of the corresponding secretome proteins were specifically secreted by T. brucei brucei and T. brucei gambiense, respectively, while 279 proteins were common to both subspecies. The proteins were assigned to 12 functional classes. Special attention was paid to the most abundant proteases (14 families because of their potential implication in the infection process and nutrient supply. The presence of proteins usually secreted via an exosome pathway suggests that this type of process is involved in trypanosome ESP secretion. The overall results provide leads for further research to develop novel tools for blocking trypanosome transmission.

  16. The Aurora Kinase in Trypanosoma brucei plays distinctive roles in metaphase-anaphase transition and cytokinetic initiation.

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    Ziyin Li

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Aurora B kinase is an essential regulator of chromosome segregation with the action well characterized in eukaryotes. It is also implicated in cytokinesis, but the detailed mechanism remains less clear, partly due to the difficulty in separating the latter from the former function in a growing cell. A chemical genetic approach with an inhibitor of the enzyme added to a synchronized cell population at different stages of the cell cycle would probably solve this problem. In the deeply branched parasitic protozoan Trypanosoma brucei, an Aurora B homolog, TbAUK1, was found to control both chromosome segregation and cytokinetic initiation by evidence from RNAi and dominant negative mutation. To clearly separate these two functions, VX-680, an inhibitor of TbAUK1, was added to a synchronized T. brucei procyclic cell population at different cell cycle stages. The unique trans-localization pattern of the chromosomal passenger complex (CPC, consisting of TbAUK1 and two novel proteins TbCPC1 and TbCPC2, was monitored during mitosis and cytokinesis by following the migration of the proteins tagged with enhanced yellow fluorescence protein in live cells with time-lapse video microscopy. Inhibition of TbAUK1 function in S-phase, prophase or metaphase invariably arrests the cells in the metaphase, suggesting an action of TbAUK1 in promoting metaphase-anaphase transition. TbAUK1 inhibition in anaphase does not affect mitotic exit, but prevents trans-localization of the CPC from the spindle midzone to the anterior tip of the new flagellum attachment zone for cytokinetic initiation. The CPC in the midzone is dispersed back to the two segregated nuclei, while cytokinesis is inhibited. In and beyond telophase, TbAUK1 inhibition has no effect on the progression of cytokinesis or the subsequent G1, S and G2 phases until a new metaphase is attained. There are thus two clearly distinct points of TbAUK1 action in T. brucei: the metaphase-anaphase transition and

  17. Effects of supplementing Erythrina brucei leaf as a substitute for cotton seed meal on growth performance and carcass characteristics of Sidama goats fed basal diet of natural grass hay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yinnesu, Asmamaw; Nurfeta, Ajebu

    2012-03-01

    The replacement value of dried Erythrina brucei leaf for cotton seed meal (CSM) on growth performance and carcass characteristics was evaluated. Twenty-five yearling buck goats (15.8 ± 1.4 kg) were assigned into five treatments in a randomized complete block design: natural grass hay alone (T1) or supplemented with 100% CSM (T2), 67% CSM + 33% E. brucei (T3), 33% CSM + 67% E. brucei (T4), and 100% E. brucei (T5) on dry matter (DM) basis. Supplemented goats consumed more (P  0.05) by the proportion of the supplements. The highest (P goats supplemented with CSM alone, whereas the lowest intake was observed in the non-supplemented group. Total CP intake decreased (P goats gained more (P goats than in the non-supplemented ones, but similar (P > 0.05) among the supplemented group. The digestibility of CP was higher (P goats, except in those goats fed E. brucei alone, than the non-supplemented group. Slaughter weight, empty body weight, hot carcass weight, dressing percentage, rib eye muscle area, and total edible offals were higher (P goats than for the non-supplemented ones. It could be concluded that E. brucei could be used as a substitute to CSM under smallholder production systems.

  18. Crystal structures of Trypanosoma brucei oligopeptidase B broaden the paradigm of catalytic regulation in prolyl oligopeptidase family enzymes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canning, Peter; Rea, Dean; Morty, Rory E; Fülöp, Vilmos

    2013-01-01

    Oligopeptidase B cleaves after basic amino acids in peptides up to 30 residues. As a virulence factor in bacteria and trypanosomatid pathogens that is absent in higher eukaryotes, this is a promising drug target. Here we present ligand-free open state and inhibitor-bound closed state crystal structures of oligopeptidase B from Trypanosoma brucei, the causative agent of African sleeping sickness. These (and related) structures show the importance of structural dynamics, governed by a fine enthalpic and entropic balance, in substrate size selectivity and catalysis. Peptides over 30 residues cannot fit the enzyme cavity, preventing the complete domain closure required for a key propeller Asp/Glu to fix the catalytic His and Arg in the catalytically competent conformation. This size exclusion mechanism protects larger peptides and proteins from degradation. Similar bacterial prolyl endopeptidase and archael acylaminoacyl peptidase structures demonstrate this mechanism is conserved among oligopeptidase family enzymes across all three domains of life.

  19. Crystal structures of Trypanosoma brucei oligopeptidase B broaden the paradigm of catalytic regulation in prolyl oligopeptidase family enzymes.

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    Peter Canning

    Full Text Available Oligopeptidase B cleaves after basic amino acids in peptides up to 30 residues. As a virulence factor in bacteria and trypanosomatid pathogens that is absent in higher eukaryotes, this is a promising drug target. Here we present ligand-free open state and inhibitor-bound closed state crystal structures of oligopeptidase B from Trypanosoma brucei, the causative agent of African sleeping sickness. These (and related structures show the importance of structural dynamics, governed by a fine enthalpic and entropic balance, in substrate size selectivity and catalysis. Peptides over 30 residues cannot fit the enzyme cavity, preventing the complete domain closure required for a key propeller Asp/Glu to fix the catalytic His and Arg in the catalytically competent conformation. This size exclusion mechanism protects larger peptides and proteins from degradation. Similar bacterial prolyl endopeptidase and archael acylaminoacyl peptidase structures demonstrate this mechanism is conserved among oligopeptidase family enzymes across all three domains of life.

  20. Functional characterization of two paralogs that are novel RNA binding proteins influencing mitochondrial transcripts of Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kafková, Lucie; Ammerman, Michelle L; Faktorová, Drahomíra; Fisk, John C; Zimmer, Sara L; Sobotka, Roman; Read, Laurie K; Lukes, Julius; Hashimi, Hassan

    2012-10-01

    A majority of Trypanosoma brucei proteins have unknown functions, a consequence of its independent evolutionary history within the order Kinetoplastida that allowed for the emergence of several unique biological properties. Among these is RNA editing, needed for expression of mitochondrial-encoded genes. The recently discovered mitochondrial RNA binding complex 1 (MRB1) is composed of proteins with several functions in processing organellar RNA. We characterize two MRB1 subunits, referred to herein as MRB8170 and MRB4160, which are paralogs arisen from a large chromosome duplication occurring only in T. brucei. As with many other MRB1 proteins, both have no recognizable domains, motifs, or orthologs outside the order. We show that they are both novel RNA binding proteins, possibly representing a new class of these proteins. They associate with a similar subset of MRB1 subunits but not directly with each other. We generated cell lines that either individually or simultaneously target the mRNAs encoding both proteins using RNAi. Their dual silencing results in a differential effect on moderately and pan-edited RNAs, suggesting a possible functional separation of the two proteins. Cell growth persists upon RNAi silencing of each protein individually in contrast to the dual knockdown. Yet, their apparent redundancy in terms of cell viability is at odds with the finding that only one of these knockdowns results in the general degradation of pan-edited RNAs. While MRB8170 and MRB4160 share a considerable degree of conservation, our results suggest that their recent sequence divergence has led to them influencing mitochondrial mRNAs to differing degrees.

  1. Mathematical modelling of polyamine metabolism in bloodstream-form Trypanosoma brucei: an application to drug target identification.

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    Xu Gu

    Full Text Available We present the first computational kinetic model of polyamine metabolism in bloodstream-form Trypanosoma brucei, the causative agent of human African trypanosomiasis. We systematically extracted the polyamine pathway from the complete metabolic network while still maintaining the predictive capability of the pathway. The kinetic model is constructed on the basis of information gleaned from the experimental biology literature and defined as a set of ordinary differential equations. We applied Michaelis-Menten kinetics featuring regulatory factors to describe enzymatic activities that are well defined. Uncharacterised enzyme kinetics were approximated and justified with available physiological properties of the system. Optimisation-based dynamic simulations were performed to train the model with experimental data and inconsistent predictions prompted an iterative procedure of model refinement. Good agreement between simulation results and measured data reported in various experimental conditions shows that the model has good applicability in spite of there being gaps in the required data. With this kinetic model, the relative importance of the individual pathway enzymes was assessed. We observed that, at low-to-moderate levels of inhibition, enzymes catalysing reactions of de novo AdoMet (MAT and ornithine production (OrnPt have more efficient inhibitory effect on total trypanothione content in comparison to other enzymes in the pathway. In our model, prozyme and TSHSyn (the production catalyst of total trypanothione were also found to exhibit potent control on total trypanothione content but only when they were strongly inhibited. Different chemotherapeutic strategies against T. brucei were investigated using this model and interruption of polyamine synthesis via joint inhibition of MAT or OrnPt together with other polyamine enzymes was identified as an optimal therapeutic strategy.

  2. Regulators of Trypanosoma brucei cell cycle progression and differentiation identified using a kinome-wide RNAi screen.

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    Nathaniel G Jones

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The African trypanosome, Trypanosoma brucei, maintains an integral link between cell cycle regulation and differentiation during its intricate life cycle. Whilst extensive changes in phosphorylation have been documented between the mammalian bloodstream form and the insect procyclic form, relatively little is known about the parasite's protein kinases (PKs involved in the control of cellular proliferation and differentiation. To address this, a T. brucei kinome-wide RNAi cell line library was generated, allowing independent inducible knockdown of each of the parasite's 190 predicted protein kinases. Screening of this library using a cell viability assay identified ≥42 PKs that are required for normal bloodstream form proliferation in culture. A secondary screen identified 24 PKs whose RNAi-mediated depletion resulted in a variety of cell cycle defects including in G1/S, kinetoplast replication/segregation, mitosis and cytokinesis, 15 of which are novel cell cycle regulators. A further screen identified for the first time two PKs, named repressor of differentiation kinase (RDK1 and RDK2, depletion of which promoted bloodstream to procyclic form differentiation. RDK1 is a membrane-associated STE11-like PK, whilst RDK2 is a NEK PK that is essential for parasite proliferation. RDK1 acts in conjunction with the PTP1/PIP39 phosphatase cascade to block uncontrolled bloodstream to procyclic form differentiation, whilst RDK2 is a PK whose depletion efficiently induces differentiation in the absence of known triggers. Thus, the RNAi kinome library provides a valuable asset for functional analysis of cell signalling pathways in African trypanosomes as well as drug target identification and validation.

  3. The orthologue of Sjogren's syndrome nuclear autoantigen 1 (SSNA1 in Trypanosoma brucei is an immunogenic self-assembling molecule.

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    Helen P Price

    Full Text Available Primary Sjögren's Syndrome (PSS is a highly prevalent autoimmune disease, typically manifesting as lymphocytic infiltration of the exocrine glands leading to chronically impaired lacrimal and salivary secretion. Sjögren's Syndrome nuclear autoantigen 1 (SSNA1 or NA14 is a major specific target for autoantibodies in PSS but the precise function and clinical relevance of this protein are largely unknown. Orthologues of the gene are absent from many of the commonly used model organisms but are present in Chlamyodomonas reinhardtii (in which it has been termed DIP13 and most protozoa. We report the functional characterisation of the orthologue of SSNA1 in the kinetoplastid parasite, Trypanosoma brucei. Both TbDIP13 and human SSNA1 are small coiled-coil proteins which are predicted to be remote homologues of the actin-binding protein tropomyosin. We use comparative proteomic methods to identify potential interacting partners of TbDIP13. We also show evidence that TbDIP13 is able to self-assemble into fibril-like structures both in vitro and in vivo, a property which may contribute to its immunogenicity. Endogenous TbDIP13 partially co-localises with acetylated α-tubulin in the insect procyclic stage of the parasite. However, deletion of the DIP13 gene in cultured bloodstream and procyclic stages of T. brucei has little effect on parasite growth or morphology, indicating either a degree of functional redundancy or a function in an alternative stage of the parasite life cycle.

  4. Structural characterization of CYP51 from Trypanosoma cruzi and Trypanosoma brucei bound to the antifungal drugs posaconazole and fluconazole.

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    Chiung-Kuang Chen

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Chagas Disease is the leading cause of heart failure in Latin America. Current drug therapy is limited by issues of both efficacy and severe side effects. Trypansoma cruzi, the protozoan agent of Chagas Disease, is closely related to two other major global pathogens, Leishmania spp., responsible for leishmaniasis, and Trypansoma brucei, the causative agent of African Sleeping Sickness. Both T. cruzi and Leishmania parasites have an essential requirement for ergosterol, and are thus vulnerable to inhibitors of sterol 14alpha-demethylase (CYP51, which catalyzes the conversion of lanosterol to ergosterol. Clinically employed anti-fungal azoles inhibit ergosterol biosynthesis in fungi, and specific azoles are also effective against both Trypanosoma and Leishmania parasites. However, modification of azoles to enhance efficacy and circumvent potential drug resistance has been problematic for both parasitic and fungal infections due to the lack of structural insights into drug binding. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We have determined the crystal structures for CYP51 from T. cruzi (resolutions of 2.35 A and 2.27 A, and from the related pathogen T. brucei (resolutions of 2.7 A and 2.6 A, co-crystallized with the antifungal drugs fluconazole and posaconazole. Remarkably, both drugs adopt multiple conformations when binding the target. The fluconazole 2,4-difluorophenyl ring flips 180 degrees depending on the H-bonding interactions with the BC-loop. The terminus of the long functional tail group of posaconazole is bound loosely in the mouth of the hydrophobic substrate binding tunnel, suggesting that the major contribution of the tail to drug efficacy is for pharmacokinetics rather than in interactions with the target. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The structures provide new insights into binding of azoles to CYP51 and mechanisms of potential drug resistance. Our studies define in structural detail the CYP51 therapeutic target in T. cruzi, and

  5. Trypanosoma brucei PUF9 regulates mRNAs for proteins involved in replicative processes over the cell cycle.

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    Stuart K Archer

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Many genes that are required at specific points in the cell cycle exhibit cell cycle-dependent expression. In the early-diverging model eukaryote and important human pathogen Trypanosoma brucei, regulation of gene expression in the cell cycle and other processes is almost entirely post-transcriptional. Here, we show that the T. brucei RNA-binding protein PUF9 stabilizes certain transcripts during S-phase. Target transcripts of PUF9--LIGKA, PNT1 and PNT2--were identified by affinity purification with TAP-tagged PUF9. RNAi against PUF9 caused an accumulation of cells in G2/M phase and unexpectedly destabilized the PUF9 target mRNAs, despite the fact that most known Puf-domain proteins promote degradation of their target mRNAs. The levels of the PUF9-regulated transcripts were cell cycle dependent, peaking in mid- to late- S-phase, and this effect was abolished when PUF9 was targeted by RNAi. The sequence UUGUACC was over-represented in the 3' UTRs of PUF9 targets; a point mutation in this motif abolished PUF9-dependent stabilization of a reporter transcript carrying the PNT1 3' UTR. LIGKA is involved in replication of the kinetoplast, and here we show that PNT1 is also kinetoplast-associated and its over-expression causes kinetoplast-related defects, while PNT2 is localized to the nucleus in G1 phase and redistributes to the mitotic spindle during mitosis. PUF9 targets may constitute a post-transcriptional regulon, encoding proteins involved in temporally coordinated replicative processes in early G2 phase.

  6. Bisphosphonates inhibit the growth of Trypanosoma brucei, Trypanosoma cruzi, Leishmania donovani, Toxoplasma gondii, and Plasmodium falciparum: a potential route to chemotherapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, M B; Grimley, J S; Lewis, J C; Heath, H T; Bailey, B N; Kendrick, H; Yardley, V; Caldera, A; Lira, R; Urbina, J A; Moreno, S N; Docampo, R; Croft, S L; Oldfield, E

    2001-03-15

    We have investigated the effects in vitro of a series of bisphosphonates on the proliferation of Trypanosoma cruzi, Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense, Leishmania donovani, Toxoplasma gondii, and Plasmodium falciparum. The results show that nitrogen-containing bisphosphonates of the type used in bone resorption therapy have significant activity against parasites, with the aromatic species having in some cases nanomolar or low-micromolar IC(50) activity values against parasite replication (e.g. o-risedronate, IC(50) = 220 nM for T. brucei rhodesiense; risedronate, IC(50) = 490 nM for T. gondii). In T. cruzi, the nitrogen-containing bisphosphonate risedronate is shown to inhibit sterol biosynthesis at a pre-squalene level, most likely by inhibiting farnesylpyrophosphate synthase. Bisphosphonates therefore appear to have potential in treating parasitic protozoan diseases.

  7. Effect of experimental single Ancylostoma caninum and mixed infections of Trypanosoma brucei and Trypanosoma congolense on the humoural immune response to anti-rabies vaccination in dogs

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Nwoha Rosemary Ijeoma Ogechi; Anene Boniface Maduka

    2015-01-01

    Objective:To determine the effect of Ancylostoma caninum (A. caninum) and trypanosome parasites on the immune response to vaccination in dogs in endemic environments. Methods:Sixteen dogs for the experiment were grouped into 4 of 4 members each. Group I was the uninfected control one, and GPII was infected with A. caninum; GPIII was infected with A. caninum/Trypanosoma congolense (T. congolense), and GPIV was infected with Trypanosoma brucei (T. brucei)/A. caninum. The dogs were first vaccinated with antirabies vaccine before infecting GPII, GPIII and GPIV with A. caninum which were done 4 weeks after vaccination. By 2-week post-vaccination, trypanosome parasites were superimposed on both GPIII and GPIV. A secondary vaccination was given to GPI, GPII, GPIII, and GPIV by Week 12 of the experiment (4 weeks post treatment). Results:The prepatent period was (3.00 ± 1.40) days, in the conjunct infection of T. brucei/A. caninum. It was (9.00 ± 1.10) days, in conjunct T. congolense/A. caninum. The prepatent period of A. caninum was (14.0 ± 2.0) days in the single A. caninum group and (13.0 ± 1.0) days in the conjunct trypanosome/A. caninum. At the 1st week after vaccination, the antibody titer in all the vaccinated groups (GPI, GPII, GPIII, and GPIV) significantly increased (P Conclusions:It was therefore concluded that A. caninum, T. brucei and T. congolense induced immunosuppression in antirabies vaccination in dogs.

  8. Comparative analysis of the kinomes of three pathogenic trypanosomatids: Leishmania major, Trypanosoma brucei and Trypanosoma cruzi

    OpenAIRE

    Ward Pauline N; Worthey Elizabeth A; Parsons Marilyn; Mottram Jeremy C

    2005-01-01

    Abstract Background The trypanosomatids Leishmania major, Trypanosoma brucei and Trypanosoma cruzi cause some of the most debilitating diseases of humankind: cutaneous leishmaniasis, African sleeping sickness, and Chagas disease. These protozoa possess complex life cycles that involve development in mammalian and insect hosts, and a tightly coordinated cell cycle ensures propagation of the highly polarized cells. However, the ways in which the parasites respond to their environment and coordi...

  9. Alba-domain proteins of Trypanosoma brucei are cytoplasmic RNA-binding proteins that interact with the translation machinery.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Mani

    Full Text Available Trypanosoma brucei and related pathogens transcribe most genes as polycistronic arrays that are subsequently processed into monocistronic mRNAs. Expression is frequently regulated post-transcriptionally by cis-acting elements in the untranslated regions (UTRs. GPEET and EP procyclins are the major surface proteins of procyclic (insect midgut forms of T. brucei. Three regulatory elements common to the 3' UTRs of both mRNAs regulate mRNA turnover and translation. The glycerol-responsive element (GRE is unique to the GPEET 3' UTR and regulates its expression independently from EP. A synthetic RNA encompassing the GRE showed robust sequence-specific interactions with cytoplasmic proteins in electromobility shift assays. This, combined with column chromatography, led to the identification of 3 Alba-domain proteins. RNAi against Alba3 caused a growth phenotype and reduced the levels of Alba1 and Alba2 proteins, indicative of interactions between family members. Tandem-affinity purification and co-immunoprecipitation verified these interactions and also identified Alba4 in sub-stoichiometric amounts. Alba proteins are cytoplasmic and are recruited to starvation granules together with poly(A RNA. Concomitant depletion of all four Alba proteins by RNAi specifically reduced translation of a reporter transcript flanked by the GPEET 3' UTR. Pulldown of tagged Alba proteins confirmed interactions with poly(A binding proteins, ribosomal protein P0 and, in the case of Alba3, the cap-binding protein eIF4E4. In addition, Alba2 and Alba3 partially cosediment with polyribosomes in sucrose gradients. Alba-domain proteins seem to have exhibited great functional plasticity in the course of evolution. First identified as DNA-binding proteins in Archaea, then in association with nuclear RNase MRP/P in yeast and mammalian cells, they were recently described as components of a translationally silent complex containing stage-regulated mRNAs in Plasmodium. Our results are

  10. Probing the metabolic network in bloodstream-form Trypanosoma brucei using untargeted metabolomics with stable isotope labelled glucose.

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    Darren J Creek

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Metabolomics coupled with heavy-atom isotope-labelled glucose has been used to probe the metabolic pathways active in cultured bloodstream form trypomastigotes of Trypanosoma brucei, a parasite responsible for human African trypanosomiasis. Glucose enters many branches of metabolism beyond glycolysis, which has been widely held to be the sole route of glucose metabolism. Whilst pyruvate is the major end-product of glucose catabolism, its transamination product, alanine, is also produced in significant quantities. The oxidative branch of the pentose phosphate pathway is operative, although the non-oxidative branch is not. Ribose 5-phosphate generated through this pathway distributes widely into nucleotide synthesis and other branches of metabolism. Acetate, derived from glucose, is found associated with a range of acetylated amino acids and, to a lesser extent, fatty acids; while labelled glycerol is found in many glycerophospholipids. Glucose also enters inositol and several sugar nucleotides that serve as precursors to macromolecule biosynthesis. Although a Krebs cycle is not operative, malate, fumarate and succinate, primarily labelled in three carbons, were present, indicating an origin from phosphoenolpyruvate via oxaloacetate. Interestingly, the enzyme responsible for conversion of phosphoenolpyruvate to oxaloacetate, phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase, was shown to be essential to the bloodstream form trypanosomes, as demonstrated by the lethal phenotype induced by RNAi-mediated downregulation of its expression. In addition, glucose derivatives enter pyrimidine biosynthesis via oxaloacetate as a precursor to aspartate and orotate.

  11. A global comparison of the human and T. brucei degradomes gives insights about possible parasite drug targets.

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    Susan T Mashiyama

    Full Text Available We performed a genome-level computational study of sequence and structure similarity, the latter using crystal structures and models, of the proteases of Homo sapiens and the human parasite Trypanosoma brucei. Using sequence and structure similarity networks to summarize the results, we constructed global views that show visually the relative abundance and variety of proteases in the degradome landscapes of these two species, and provide insights into evolutionary relationships between proteases. The results also indicate how broadly these sequence sets are covered by three-dimensional structures. These views facilitate cross-species comparisons and offer clues for drug design from knowledge about the sequences and structures of potential drug targets and their homologs. Two protease groups ("M32" and "C51" that are very different in sequence from human proteases are examined in structural detail, illustrating the application of this global approach in mining new pathogen genomes for potential drug targets. Based on our analyses, a human ACE2 inhibitor was selected for experimental testing on one of these parasite proteases, TbM32, and was shown to inhibit it. These sequence and structure data, along with interactive versions of the protein similarity networks generated in this study, are available at http://babbittlab.ucsf.edu/resources.html.

  12. Histone H3 Variant Regulates RNA Polymerase II Transcription Termination and Dual Strand Transcription of siRNA Loci in Trypanosoma brucei.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Reynolds

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Base J, β-D-glucosyl-hydroxymethyluracil, is a chromatin modification of thymine in the nuclear DNA of flagellated protozoa of the order Kinetoplastida. In Trypanosoma brucei, J is enriched, along with histone H3 variant (H3.V, at sites involved in RNA Polymerase (RNAP II termination and telomeric sites involved in regulating variant surface glycoprotein gene (VSG transcription by RNAP I. Reduction of J in T. brucei indicated a role of J in the regulation of RNAP II termination, where the loss of J at specific sites within polycistronic gene clusters led to read-through transcription and increased expression of downstream genes. We now demonstrate that the loss of H3.V leads to similar defects in RNAP II termination within gene clusters and increased expression of downstream genes. Gene derepression is intensified upon the subsequent loss of J in the H3.V knockout. mRNA-seq indicates gene derepression includes VSG genes within the silent RNAP I transcribed telomeric gene clusters, suggesting an important role for H3.V in telomeric gene repression and antigenic variation. Furthermore, the loss of H3.V at regions of overlapping transcription at the end of convergent gene clusters leads to increased nascent RNA and siRNA production. Our results suggest base J and H3.V can act independently as well as synergistically to regulate transcription termination and expression of coding and non-coding RNAs in T. brucei, depending on chromatin context (and transcribing polymerase. As such these studies provide the first direct evidence for histone H3.V negatively influencing transcription elongation to promote termination.

  13. Trypanosoma brucei Invasion and T-Cell Infiltration of the Brain Parenchyma in Experimental Sleeping Sickness: Timing and Correlation with Functional Changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laperchia, Claudia; Palomba, Maria; Seke Etet, Paul F.; Rodgers, Jean; Bradley, Barbara; Montague, Paul; Grassi-Zucconi, Gigliola; Bentivoglio, Marina

    2016-01-01

    Background The timing of Trypanosoma brucei entry into the brain parenchyma to initiate the second, meningoencephalitic stage of human African trypanosomiasis or sleeping sickness is currently debated and even parasite invasion of the neuropil has been recently questioned. Furthermore, the relationship between neurological features and disease stage are unclear, despite the important diagnostic and therapeutic implications. Methodology Using a rat model of chronic Trypanosoma brucei brucei infection we determined the timing of parasite and T-cell neuropil infiltration and its correlation with functional changes. Parasite DNA was detected using trypanosome-specific PCR. Body weight and sleep structure alterations represented by sleep-onset rapid eye movement (SOREM) periods, reported in human and experimental African trypanosomiasis, were monitored. The presence of parasites, as well as CD4+ and CD8+ T-cells in the neuropil was assessed over time in the brain of the same animals by immunocytochemistry and quantitative analyses. Principal findings Trypanosome DNA was present in the brain at day 6 post-infection and increased more than 15-fold by day 21. Parasites and T-cells were observed in the parenchyma from day 9 onwards. Parasites traversing blood vessel walls were observed in the hypothalamus and other brain regions. Body weight gain was reduced from day 7 onwards. SOREM episodes started in most cases early after infection, with an increase in number and duration after parasite neuroinvasion. Conclusion These findings demonstrate invasion of the neuropil over time, after an initial interval, by parasites and lymphocytes crossing the blood-brain barrier, and show that neurological features can precede this event. The data thus challenge the current clinical and cerebrospinal fluid criteria of disease staging. PMID:28002454

  14. Diverse effects on mitochondrial and nuclear functions elicited by drugs and genetic knockdowns in bloodstream stage Trypanosoma brucei.

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    Christal Worthen

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The options for treating the fatal disease human African trypanosomiasis are limited to a few drugs that are toxic or facing increasing resistance. New drugs that kill the causative agents, subspecies of Trypanosoma brucei, are therefore urgently needed. Little is known about the cellular mechanisms that lead to death of the pathogenic bloodstream stage. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We therefore conducted the first side by side comparison of the cellular effects of multiple death inducers that target different systems in bloodstream form parasites, including six drugs (pentamidine, prostaglandin D(2, quercetin, etoposide, camptothecin, and a tetrahydroquinoline and six RNAi knockdowns that target distinct cellular functions. All compounds tested were static at low concentrations and killed at high concentrations. Dead parasites were rapidly quantified by forward and side scatter during flow cytometry, as confirmed by ethidium homodimer and esterase staining, making these assays convenient for quantitating parasite death. The various treatments yielded different combinations of defects in mitochondrial potential, reactive oxygen species, cell cycle, and genome segregation. No evidence was seen for phosphatidylserine exposure, a marker of apoptosis. Reduction in ATP levels lagged behind decreases in live cell number. Even when the impact on growth was similar at 24 hours, drug-treated cells showed dramatic differences in their ability to further proliferate, demonstrating differences in the reversibility of effects induced by the diverse compounds. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Parasites showed different phenotypes depending on the treatment, but none of them were clear predictors of whether apparently live cells could go on to proliferate after drugs were removed. We therefore suggest that clonal proliferation assays may be a useful step in selecting anti-trypanosomal compounds for further development. Elucidating the genetic or

  15. Genetic character of drug resistance in Trpanosoma brucei%锥虫抗药性的遗传特性

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    廖党金; 沈杰

    2000-01-01

    @@ 锥虫病是由锥虫寄生于人和动物的血液而引起人和动物的一种疾病.锥虫抗药性的产生,可能给人和家畜带来较严重的后果[1],国外于1908年已注意到锥虫的抗药性问题[2、3],而我国于1988年第一次口头报道在云南用厂方推荐的安锥赛治疗剂量难以治愈家畜锥虫病,1991年沈杰等正式报道了我国伊氏锥虫云南株和安徽株对安锥赛已产生抗药性[4].迄今,报告产生抗药性的锥虫虫种有布氏锥虫(Trypanosoma brucei)等常见的8个种,其它未报告的锥虫并不意味着不产生抗药性.已报告产生抗药性的药物有苏拉明(Suramine)等30多种抗锥虫药物.抗药性是能遗传的,对锥虫抗药性的遗传特性的了解,能帮助我们正确地选择和使用药物、减少和避免抗药性的产生及怎样消除已有的抗药性具有极其重要的作用,其次也有助于锥虫的生理、生化及生物学研究.

  16. Crystal Structures of Trypanosoma brucei Sterol 14[alpha]-Demethylase and Implications for Selective Treatment of Human Infections

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lepesheva, Galina I.; Park, Hee-Won; Hargrove, Tatiana Y.; Vanhollebeke, Benoit; Wawrzak, Zdzislaw; Harp, Joel M.; Sundaramoorthy, Munirathinam; Nes, W. David; Pays, Etienne; Chaudhuri, Minu; Villalta, Fernando; Waterman, Michael R. (ULdB); (Vanderbilt); (TTU); (Toronto); (NWU); (Meharry)

    2010-01-25

    Sterol 14{alpha}-demethylase (14DM, the CYP51 family of cytochrome P450) is an essential enzyme in sterol biosynthesis in eukaryotes. It serves as a major drug target for fungal diseases and can potentially become a target for treatment of human infections with protozoa. Here we present 1.9 {angstrom} resolution crystal structures of 14DM from the protozoan pathogen Trypanosoma brucei, ligand-free and complexed with a strong chemically selected inhibitor N-1-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)-2-(1H-imidazol-1-yl)ethyl-4-(5-phenyl-1,3,4-oxadi-azol-2-yl)benzamide that we previously found to produce potent antiparasitic effects in Trypanosomatidae. This is the first structure of a eukaryotic microsomal 14DM that acts on sterol biosynthesis, and it differs profoundly from that of the water-soluble CYP51 family member from Mycobacterium tuberculosis, both in organization of the active site cavity and in the substrate access channel location. Inhibitor binding does not cause large scale conformational rearrangements, yet induces unanticipated local alterations in the active site, including formation of a hydrogen bond network that connects, via the inhibitor amide group fragment, two remote functionally essential protein segments and alters the heme environment. The inhibitor binding mode provides a possible explanation for both its functionally irreversible effect on the enzyme activity and its selectivity toward the 14DM from human pathogens versus the human 14DM ortholog. The structures shed new light on 14DM functional conservation and open an excellent opportunity for directed design of novel antiparasitic drugs.

  17. Identification and Characterization of FTY720 for the Treatment of Human African Trypanosomiasis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaiser, Marcel; Avery, Vicky M.

    2015-01-01

    The screening of a focused library identified FTY720 (Fingolimod; Gilenya) as a potent selective antitrypanosomal compound active against Trypanosoma brucei gambiense and T. brucei rhodesiense, the causative agents of human African trypanosomiasis (HAT). This is the first report of trypanocidal activity for FTY720, an oral drug registered for the treatment of relapsing multiple sclerosis, and the characterization of sphingolipids as a potential new class of compounds for HAT. PMID:26666915

  18. A Novel Basal Body Protein That Is a Polo-like Kinase Substrate Is Required for Basal Body Segregation and Flagellum Adhesion in Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Huiqing; Zhou, Qing; Li, Ziyin

    2015-10-01

    The Polo-like kinase (PLK) in Trypanosoma brucei plays multiple roles in basal body segregation, flagellum attachment, and cytokinesis. However, the mechanistic role of TbPLK remains elusive, mainly because most of its substrates are not known. Here, we report a new substrate of TbPLK, SPBB1, and its essential roles in T. brucei. SPBB1 was identified through yeast two-hybrid screening with the kinase-dead TbPLK as the bait. It interacts with TbPLK in vitro and in vivo, and is phosphorylated by TbPLK in vitro. SPBB1 localizes to both the mature basal body and the probasal body throughout the cell cycle, and co-localizes with TbPLK at the basal body during early cell cycle stages. RNAi against SPBB1 in procyclic trypanosomes inhibited basal body segregation, disrupted the new flagellum attachment zone filament, detached the new flagellum, and caused defective cytokinesis. Moreover, RNAi of SPBB1 confined TbPLK at the basal body and the bilobe structure, resulting in constitutive phosphorylation of TbCentrin2 at the bilobe. Altogether, these results identified a basal body protein as a TbPLK substrate and its essential role in promoting basal body segregation and flagellum attachment zone filament assembly for flagellum adhesion and cytokinesis initiation.

  19. Nucleolar accumulation of RNA binding proteins induced by Actinomycin D is functional in Trypanosoma cruzi and Leishmania mexicana but not in T. brucei.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ezequiel Názer

    Full Text Available We have recently shown in T. cruzi that a group of RNA Binding Proteins (RBPs, involved in mRNA metabolism, are accumulated into the nucleolus in response to Actinomycin D (ActD treatment. In this work, we have extended our analysis to other members of the trypanosomatid lineage. In agreement with our previous study, the mechanism seems to be conserved in L. mexicana, since both endogenous RBPs and a transgenic RBP were relocalized to the nucleolus in parasites exposed to ActD. In contrast, in T. brucei, neither endogenous RBPs (TbRRM1 and TbPABP2 nor a transgenic RBP from T. cruzi were accumulated into the nucleolus under such treatment. Interestingly, when a transgenic TbRRM1 was expressed in T. cruzi and the parasites exposed to ActD, TbRRM1 relocated to the nucleolus, suggesting that it contains the necessary sequence elements to be targeted to the nucleolus. Together, both experiments demonstrate that the mechanism behind nucleolar localization of RBPs, which is present in T. cruzi and L. mexicana, is not functional in T. brucei, suggesting that it has been lost or retained differentially during the evolution of the trypanosomatid lineage.

  20. Deletion of a novel protein kinase with PX and FYVE-related domains increases the rate of differentiation of Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vassella, E; Krämer, R; Turner, C M; Wankell, M; Modes, C; van den Bogaard, M; Boshart, M

    2001-07-01

    Growth control of African trypanosomes in the mammalian host is coupled to differentiation of a non-dividing life cycle stage, the stumpy bloodstream form. We show that a protein kinase with novel domain architecture is important for growth regulation. Zinc finger kinase (ZFK) has a kinase domain related to RAC and S6 kinases flanked by a FYVE-related zinc finger and a phox (PX) homology domain. To investigate the function of the kinase during cyclical development, a stable transformation procedure for bloodstream forms of differentiation-competent (pleomorphic) Trypanosoma brucei strains was established. Deletion of both allelic copies of ZFK by homologous recombination resulted in reduced growth of bloodstream-form parasites in culture, which was correlated with an increased rate of differentiation to the non-dividing stumpy form. Growth and differentiation rates were returned to wild-type level by ectopic ZFK expression. The phenotype is stage-specific, as growth of procyclic (insect form) trypanosomes was unaffected, and Deltazfk/Deltazfk clones were able to undergo full cyclical development in the tsetse fly vector. Deletion of ZFK in a differentiation-defective (monomorphic) strain of T. brucei did not change its growth rate in the bloodstream stage. This suggests a function of ZFK associated with the trypanosomes' decision between either cell cycle progression, as slender bloodstream form, or differentiation to the non-dividing stumpy form.

  1. Ambiguity Revealed

    OpenAIRE

    Subir Bose; Matthew Polisson; Ludovic Renou

    2012-01-01

    We derive necessary and suffcient conditions for data sets composed of state-contingent prices and consumption to be consistent with two prominent models of decision making under ambiguity: variational preferences and smooth ambiguity. The revealed preference conditions for the maxmin expected utility and subjective expected utility models are characterized as special cases.

  2. Ambiguity revealed

    OpenAIRE

    Bayer, Ralph-C; Bose, Subir; Polisson, Matthew; Renou, Ludovic

    2013-01-01

    We derive necessary and sufficient conditions for data sets composed of state-contingent prices and consumption to be consistent with two prominent models of decision making under uncertainty: variational preferences and smooth ambiguity. The revealed preference conditions for subjective expected utility, maxmin expected utility, and multiplier preferences are characterised as special cases. We implement our tests on data from a portfolio choice experiment.

  3. A core MRB1 complex component is indispensable for RNA editing in insect and human infective stages of Trypanosoma brucei.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michelle L Ammerman

    Full Text Available Uridine insertion/deletion RNA editing is a unique and vital process in kinetoplastids, required for creation of translatable open reading frames in most mitochondrially-encoded RNAs. Emerging as a key player in this process is the mitochondrial RNA binding 1 (MRB1 complex. MRB1 comprises an RNA-independent core complex of at least six proteins, including the GAP1/2 guide RNA (gRNA binding proteins. The core interacts in an RNA-enhanced or -dependent manner with imprecisely defined TbRGG2 subcomplexes, Armadillo protein MRB10130, and additional factors that comprise the dynamic MRB1 complex. Towards understanding MRB1 complex function in RNA editing, we present here functional characterization of the pentein domain-containing MRB1 core protein, MRB11870. Inducible RNAi studies demonstrate that MRB11870 is essential for proliferation of both insect vector and human infective stage T. brucei. MRB11870 ablation causes a massive defect in RNA editing, affecting both pan-edited and minimally edited mRNAs, but does not substantially affect mitochondrial RNA stability or processing of precursor transcripts. The editing defect in MRB1-depleted cells occurs at the initiation stage of editing, as pre-edited mRNAs accumulate. However, the gRNAs that direct editing remain abundant in the knockdown cells. To examine the contribution of MRB11870 to MRB1 macromolecular interactions, we tagged core complexes and analyzed their composition and associated proteins in the presence and absence of MRB11870. These studies demonstrated that MRB11870 is essential for association of GAP1/2 with the core, as well as for interaction of the core with other proteins and subcomplexes. Together, these data support a model in which the MRB1 core mediates functional interaction of gRNAs with the editing machinery, having GAP1/2 as its gRNA binding constituents. MRB11870 is a critical component of the core, essential for its structure and function.

  4. Pentamidine Is Not a Permeant but a Nanomolar Inhibitor of the Trypanosoma brucei Aquaglyceroporin-2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Jie; Baker, Nicola; Rothert, Monja; Henke, Björn; Jeacock, Laura; Horn, David; Beitz, Eric

    2016-02-01

    The chemotherapeutic arsenal against human African trypanosomiasis, sleeping sickness, is limited and can cause severe, often fatal, side effects. One of the classic and most widely used drugs is pentamidine, an aromatic diamidine compound introduced in the 1940s. Recently, a genome-wide loss-of-function screen and a subsequently generated trypanosome knockout strain revealed a specific aquaglyceroporin, TbAQP2, to be required for high-affinity uptake of pentamidine. Yet, the underlying mechanism remained unclear. Here, we show that TbAQP2 is not a direct transporter for the di-basic, positively charged pentamidine. Even though one of the two common cation filters of aquaglyceroporins, i.e. the aromatic/arginine selectivity filter, is unconventional in TbAQP2, positively charged compounds are still excluded from passing the channel. We found, instead, that the unique selectivity filter layout renders pentamidine a nanomolar inhibitor of TbAQP2 glycerol permeability. Full, non-covalent inhibition of an aqua(glycero)porin in the nanomolar range has not been achieved before. The remarkable affinity derives from an electrostatic interaction with Asp265 and shielding from water as shown by structure-function evaluation and point mutation of Asp265. Exchange of the preceding Leu264 to arginine abolished pentamidine-binding and parasites expressing this mutant were pentamidine-resistant. Our results indicate that TbAQP2 is a high-affinity receptor for pentamidine. Taken together with localization of TbAQP2 in the flagellar pocket of bloodstream trypanosomes, we propose that pentamidine uptake is by endocytosis.

  5. Pentamidine Is Not a Permeant but a Nanomolar Inhibitor of the Trypanosoma brucei Aquaglyceroporin-2.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jie Song

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The chemotherapeutic arsenal against human African trypanosomiasis, sleeping sickness, is limited and can cause severe, often fatal, side effects. One of the classic and most widely used drugs is pentamidine, an aromatic diamidine compound introduced in the 1940s. Recently, a genome-wide loss-of-function screen and a subsequently generated trypanosome knockout strain revealed a specific aquaglyceroporin, TbAQP2, to be required for high-affinity uptake of pentamidine. Yet, the underlying mechanism remained unclear. Here, we show that TbAQP2 is not a direct transporter for the di-basic, positively charged pentamidine. Even though one of the two common cation filters of aquaglyceroporins, i.e. the aromatic/arginine selectivity filter, is unconventional in TbAQP2, positively charged compounds are still excluded from passing the channel. We found, instead, that the unique selectivity filter layout renders pentamidine a nanomolar inhibitor of TbAQP2 glycerol permeability. Full, non-covalent inhibition of an aqua(glyceroporin in the nanomolar range has not been achieved before. The remarkable affinity derives from an electrostatic interaction with Asp265 and shielding from water as shown by structure-function evaluation and point mutation of Asp265. Exchange of the preceding Leu264 to arginine abolished pentamidine-binding and parasites expressing this mutant were pentamidine-resistant. Our results indicate that TbAQP2 is a high-affinity receptor for pentamidine. Taken together with localization of TbAQP2 in the flagellar pocket of bloodstream trypanosomes, we propose that pentamidine uptake is by endocytosis.

  6. Lipid-drug conjugate nanoparticles of the hydrophilic drug diminazene-cytotoxicity testing and mouse serum adsorption

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Olbrich, C.; Gessner, A.; Schroder, W.; Kayser, Oliver; Muller, R.H.

    2004-01-01

    Sleeping sickness is a widely distributed disease in great parts of Africa. It is caused by Trypanosoma brucei gambiense and rhodiense, transmitted by the Tse-Tse fly. After a hemolymphatic stage, the parasites enter the central nervous system where they cannot be reached by hydrophilic drugs. To po

  7. Eleganolone, a Diterpene from the French Marine Alga Bifurcaria bifurcata Inhibits Growth of the Human Pathogens Trypanosoma brucei and Plasmodium falciparum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne-Marie Rusig

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Organic extracts of 20 species of French seaweed have been screened against Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense trypomastigotes, the parasite responsible for sleeping sickness. These extracts have previously shown potent antiprotozoal activities in vitro against Plasmodium falciparum and Leishmania donovani. The selectivity of the extracts was also evaluated by testing cytotoxicity on a mammalian L6 cell line. The ethyl acetate extract of the brown seaweed, Bifurcaria bifurcata, showed strong trypanocidal activity with a mild selectivity index (IC50 = 0.53 µg/mL; selectivity index (SI = 11.6. Bio-guided fractionation led to the isolation of eleganolone, the main diterpenoid isolated from this species. Eleganolone contributes only mildly to the trypanocidal activity of the ethyl acetate extract (IC50 = 45.0 µM, SI = 4.0. However, a selective activity against P. falciparum erythrocytic stages in vitro has been highlighted (IC50 = 7.9 µM, SI = 21.6.

  8. Eleganolone, a Diterpene from the French Marine Alga Bifurcaria bifurcata Inhibits Growth of the Human Pathogens Trypanosoma brucei and Plasmodium falciparum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallé, Jean-Baptiste; Attioua, Barthélémy; Kaiser, Marcel; Rusig, Anne-Marie; Lobstein, Annelise; Vonthron-Sénécheau, Catherine

    2013-01-01

    Organic extracts of 20 species of French seaweed have been screened against Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense trypomastigotes, the parasite responsible for sleeping sickness. These extracts have previously shown potent antiprotozoal activities in vitro against Plasmodium falciparum and Leishmania donovani. The selectivity of the extracts was also evaluated by testing cytotoxicity on a mammalian L6 cell line. The ethyl acetate extract of the brown seaweed, Bifurcaria bifurcata, showed strong trypanocidal activity with a mild selectivity index (IC50 = 0.53 µg/mL; selectivity index (SI) = 11.6). Bio-guided fractionation led to the isolation of eleganolone, the main diterpenoid isolated from this species. Eleganolone contributes only mildly to the trypanocidal activity of the ethyl acetate extract (IC50 = 45.0 µM, SI = 4.0). However, a selective activity against P. falciparum erythrocytic stages in vitro has been highlighted (IC50 = 7.9 µM, SI = 21.6). PMID:23442789

  9. 布氏锥虫葡糖基磷脂酰肌醇(GPI)的研究进展%RESEARCH PROSPECTS ON GLYCOSYLPHOSPHATIDYLINOSITOL (GPI) OF TRYPANOSOMA BRUCEI

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    原丽红; 林本夫; 王祥生; 李莲瑞

    2004-01-01

    布氏锥虫(Trypanosoma brucei)是一种原虫性寄生虫,通过采采蝇(tsets fly)的传播感染人和其它哺乳动物,导致人的昏睡病和家畜的那卡那病。布氏锥虫有两个截然不同的生活阶段,即血液期(bloodstream stage,寄生于哺乳动物血细胞内)和昆虫期(insect stage,又叫循环期或感染期,寄生于采采蝇的中肠内)。

  10. The response of trypanosomes and other eukaryotes to ER stress and the spliced leader RNA silencing (SLS) pathway in Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michaeli, Shulamit

    2015-01-01

    The unfolded protein response (UPR) is induced when the quality control machinery of the cell is overloaded with unfolded proteins or when one of the functions of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is perturbed. Here, I describe UPR in yeast and mammals, and compare it to what we know about pathogenic fungi and the parasitic protozoans from the order kinetoplastida, focusing on the novel pathway the spliced leader silencing (SLS) in Trypanosoma brucei. Trypanosomes lack conventional transcription regulation, and thus, lack most of the UPR machinery present in other eukaryotes. Trypanosome genes are transcribed in polycistronic units that are processed by trans-splicing and polyadenylation. In trans-splicing, which is essential for processing of each mRNA, an exon known as the spliced leader (SL) is added to all mRNAs from a small RNA, the SL RNA. Under severe ER stress, T. brucei elicits the SLS pathway. In SLS, the transcription of the SL RNA gene is extinguished, and the entire transcription complex dissociates from the SL RNA promoter. Induction of SLS is mediated by an ER-associated kinase (PK3) that migrates to the nucleus, where it phosphorylates the TATA-binding protein (TRF4), leading shut-off of SL RNA transcription. As a result, trans-splicing is inhibited and the parasites activate a programmed cell death (PCD) pathway. Despite the ability to sense the ER stress, the different eukaryotes, especially unicellular parasites and pathogenic fungi, developed a variety of unique and different ways to sense and adjust to this stress in a manner different from their host.

  11. Cytosolic NADPH homeostasis in glucose-starved procyclic Trypanosoma brucei relies on malic enzyme and the pentose phosphate pathway fed by gluconeogenic flux.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allmann, Stefan; Morand, Pauline; Ebikeme, Charles; Gales, Lara; Biran, Marc; Hubert, Jane; Brennand, Ana; Mazet, Muriel; Franconi, Jean-Michel; Michels, Paul A M; Portais, Jean-Charles; Boshart, Michael; Bringaud, Frédéric

    2013-06-21

    All living organisms depend on NADPH production to feed essential biosyntheses and for oxidative stress defense. Protozoan parasites such as the sleeping sickness pathogen Trypanosoma brucei adapt to different host environments, carbon sources, and oxidative stresses during their infectious life cycle. The procyclic stage develops in the midgut of the tsetse insect vector, where they rely on proline as carbon source, although they prefer glucose when grown in rich media. Here, we investigate the flexible and carbon source-dependent use of NADPH synthesis pathways in the cytosol of the procyclic stage. The T. brucei genome encodes two cytosolic NADPH-producing pathways, the pentose phosphate pathway (PPP) and the NADP-dependent malic enzyme (MEc). Reverse genetic blocking of those pathways and a specific inhibitor (dehydroepiandrosterone) of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase together established redundancy with respect to H2O2 stress management and parasite growth. Blocking both pathways resulted in ∼10-fold increase of susceptibility to H2O2 stress and cell death. Unexpectedly, the same pathway redundancy was observed in glucose-rich and glucose-depleted conditions, suggesting that gluconeogenesis can feed the PPP to provide NADPH. This was confirmed by (i) a lethal phenotype of RNAi-mediated depletion of glucose-6-phosphate isomerase (PGI) in the glucose-depleted Δmec/Δmec null background, (ii) an ∼10-fold increase of susceptibility to H2O2 stress observed for the Δmec/Δmec/(RNAi)PGI double mutant when compared with the single mutants, and (iii) the (13)C enrichment of glycolytic and PPP intermediates from cells incubated with [U-(13)C]proline, in the absence of glucose. Gluconeogenesis-supported NADPH supply may also be important for nucleotide and glycoconjugate syntheses in the insect host.

  12. Revealing Rembrandt

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew J Parker

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The power and significance of artwork in shaping human cognition is self-evident. The starting point for our empirical investigations is the view that the task of neuroscience is to integrate itself with other forms of knowledge, rather than to seek to supplant them. In our recent work, we examined a particular aspect of the appreciation of artwork using present-day functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI. Our results emphasised the continuity between viewing artwork and other human cognitive activities. We also showed that appreciation of a particular aspect of artwork, namely authenticity, depends upon the co-ordinated activity between the brain regions involved in multiple decision making and those responsible for processing visual information. The findings about brain function probably have no specific consequences for understanding how people respond to the art of Rembrandt in comparison with their response to other artworks. However, the use of images of Rembrandt’s portraits, his most intimate and personal works, clearly had a significant impact upon our viewers, even though they have been spatially confined to the interior of an MRI scanner at the time of viewing. Neuroscientific studies of humans viewing artwork have the capacity to reveal the diversity of human cognitive responses that may be induced by external advice or context as people view artwork in a variety of frameworks and settings.

  13. Megazol and its bioisostere 4H-1,2,4-triazole: comparing the trypanocidal, cytotoxic and genotoxic activities and their in vitro and in silico interactions with the Trypanosoma brucei nitroreductase enzyme.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carvalho, Alcione Silva de; Salomão, Kelly; Castro, Solange Lisboa de; Conde, Taline Ramos; Zamith, Helena Pereira da Silva; Caffarena, Ernesto Raúl; Hall, Belinda Suzette; Wilkinson, Shane Robert; Boechat, Núbia

    2014-06-01

    Megazol (7) is a 5-nitroimidazole that is highly active against Trypanosoma cruzi and Trypanosoma brucei, as well as drug-resistant forms of trypanosomiasis. Compound 7 is not used clinically due to its mutagenic and genotoxic properties, but has been largely used as a lead compound. Here, we compared the activity of 7 with its 4H-1,2,4-triazole bioisostere (8) in bloodstream forms of T. brucei and T. cruzi and evaluated their activation by T. brucei type I nitroreductase (TbNTR) enzyme. We also analysed the cytotoxic and genotoxic effects of these compounds in whole human blood using Comet and fluorescein diacetate/ethidium bromide assays. Although the only difference between 7 and 8 is the substitution of sulphur (in the thiadiazole in 7) for nitrogen (in the triazole in 8), the results indicated that 8 had poorer antiparasitic activity than 7 and was not genotoxic, whereas 7 presented this effect. The determination of Vmax indicated that although 8 was metabolised more rapidly than 7, it bounds to the TbNTR with better affinity, resulting in equivalent kcat/KM values. Docking assays of 7 and 8 performed within the active site of a homology model of the TbNTR indicating that 8 had greater affinity than 7.

  14. Molecular Confirmation of Trypanosoma evansi and Babesia bigemina in Cattle from Lower Egypt

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mahmoud M. Elhaig, Abdelfattah Selim, Mohamed M. Mahmoud and Eman K El-Gayar

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Trypanosomosis and babesiosis are economically important vector-borne diseases for animal health and productivity in developing countries. In Egypt, molecular epidemiological surveys on such diseases are scarce. In the present study, we examined 475 healthy and 25 clinically diagnosed cattle from three provinces in Lower Egypt, for Trypanosoma (T. and Babesia (B. infections using an ITS1 PCR assay that confirmed Trypanosoma species presence and an 18S rRNA assay that detected B. bigemina. Results confirmed Trypanosoma spp. and B. bigemina presence in 30.4% and 11% individuals, respectively, with eight animals (1.6% being co-infected with both hemoparasites. Subsequent type-specific PCRs revealed that all Trypanosoma PCR positive samples corresponded to T. evansi and that none of the animals harboured T. brucei gambiense or T. brucei rhodesiense. Nucleotide sequencing of the variable surface glycoprotein revealed the T. evansi cattle strain to be most closely related (99% nucleotide sequence identity to strains previously detected in dromedary camels in Egypt, while the 18S rRNA gene phylogeny confirmed the presence of a unique B. bigemina haplotype closely related to strains from Turkey and Brazil. Statistically significant differences in PCR prevalence were noted with respect to gender, clinical status and locality. These results confirm the presence of high numbers of carrier animals and signal the need for expanded surveillance and control efforts.

  15. The threonine degradation pathway of the Trypanosoma brucei procyclic form: the main carbon source for lipid biosynthesis is under metabolic control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Millerioux, Yoann; Ebikeme, Charles; Biran, Marc; Morand, Pauline; Bouyssou, Guillaume; Vincent, Isabel M; Mazet, Muriel; Riviere, Loïc; Franconi, Jean-Michel; Burchmore, Richard J S; Moreau, Patrick; Barrett, Michael P; Bringaud, Frédéric

    2013-10-01

    The Trypanosoma brucei procyclic form resides within the digestive tract of its insect vector, where it exploits amino acids as carbon sources. Threonine is the amino acid most rapidly consumed by this parasite, however its role is poorly understood. Here, we show that the procyclic trypanosomes grown in rich medium only use glucose and threonine for lipid biosynthesis, with threonine's contribution being ∼ 2.5 times higher than that of glucose. A combination of reverse genetics and NMR analysis of excreted end-products from threonine and glucose metabolism, shows that acetate, which feeds lipid biosynthesis, is also produced primarily from threonine. Interestingly, the first enzymatic step of the threonine degradation pathway, threonine dehydrogenase (TDH, EC 1.1.1.103), is under metabolic control and plays a key role in the rate of catabolism. Indeed, a trypanosome mutant deleted for the phosphoenolpyruvate decarboxylase gene (PEPCK, EC 4.1.1.49) shows a 1.7-fold and twofold decrease of TDH protein level and activity, respectively, associated with a 1.8-fold reduction in threonine-derived acetate production. We conclude that TDH expression is under control and can be downregulated in response to metabolic perturbations, such as in the PEPCK mutant in which the glycolytic metabolic flux was redirected towards acetate production.

  16. The glycosylphosphatidylinositol-PLC in Trypanosoma brucei forms a linear array on the exterior of the flagellar membrane before and after activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanrahan, Orla; Webb, Helena; O'Byrne, Robert; Brabazon, Elaine; Treumann, Achim; Sunter, Jack D; Carrington, Mark; Voorheis, H Paul

    2009-06-01

    Bloodstream forms of Trypanosoma brucei contain a glycosylphosphatidylinositol-specific phospholipase C (GPI-PLC) that cleaves the GPI-anchor of the variable surface glycoprotein (VSG). Its location in trypanosomes has been controversial. Here, using confocal microscopy and surface labelling techniques, we show that the GPI-PLC is located exclusively in a linear array on the outside of the flagellar membrane, close to the flagellar attachment zone, but does not co-localize with the flagellar attachment zone protein, FAZ1. Consequently, the GPI-PLC and the VSG occupy the same plasma membrane leaflet, which resolves the topological problem associated with the cleavage reaction if the VSG and the GPI-PLC were on opposite sides of the membrane. The exterior location requires the enzyme to be tightly regulated to prevent VSG release under basal conditions. During stimulated VSG release in intact cells, the GPI-PLC did not change location, suggesting that the release mechanism involves lateral diffusion of the VSG in the plane of the membrane to the fixed position of the GPI-PLC.

  17. Coenzyme Q10 prevented full blown splenomegaly and decreased melarsoprol-induced reactive encephalopathy in mice infected with Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    James Nyabuga Nyariki; John Kibuthu Thuita; Grace Kemunto Nyambati; Alfred Orina Isaac

    2014-01-01

    Objective: To establish the modulatory effects of coenzyme Q10 on experimental trypanosome infections in mice and evaluate the risk of occurrence and severity of melarsoprol-induced post treatment reactive encephalopathy (PTRE). Methods: Female Swiss white mice were orally administered with 200 mg/kg of coenzyme Q10 after which they were intraperitoneally inoculated with Trypanasoma brucei rhodesiense (T. b. rhodesiense). The resultant infection was allowed to develop and simulate all phases of human African trypanosomiasis and PTRE. Parasitaemia development, packed cell volume, haematological and pathological changes were determined. Results:A histological study in the brain tissue of T. b. rhodesiense infected mice demonstrated neuroinflammatory pathology which was highly amplified in the PTRE-induced groups. A prominent reduction in the severity of the neuroinflammatory response was detected when coenzyme-Q10 was administered. Furthermore, the mean tissue weight of spleen to body ratio in coenzyme Q10 supplemented group was significantly (P Conclusions: The capacity of coenzyme Q10 to alter the pathogenesis of T. b. rhodesiense infection in mice and following treatment with melarsoprol, may find application by rendering humans and animals less susceptible to deleterious effects of trypanosome infection such as splenomegaly and melarsoprol-induced PTRE and neurotoxicity.

  18. Depletion of the SR-Related Protein TbRRM1 Leads to Cell Cycle Arrest and Apoptosis-Like Death in Trypanosoma brucei

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levy, Gabriela V.; Moretti, Georgina; Tekiel, Valeria S.; Sánchez, Daniel O.

    2015-01-01

    Arginine-Serine (RS) domain-containing proteins are RNA binding proteins with multiple functions in RNA metabolism. In mammalian cells this group of proteins is also implicated in regulation and coordination of cell cycle and apoptosis. In trypanosomes, an early branching group within the eukaryotic lineage, this group of proteins is represented by 3 members, two of them are SR proteins and have been recently shown to be involved in rRNA processing as well as in pre-mRNA splicing and stability. Here we report our findings on the 3rd member, the SR-related protein TbRRM1. In the present study, we showed that TbRRM1 ablation by RNA-interference in T. brucei procyclic cells leads to cell-cycle block, abnormal cell elongation compatible with the nozzle phenotype and cell death by an apoptosis-like mechanism. Our results expand the role of the trypanosomal RS-domain containing proteins in key cellular processes such as cell cycle and apoptosis-like death, roles also carried out by the mammalian SR proteins, and thus suggesting a conserved function in this phylogenetically conserved protein family. PMID:26284933

  19. DNA from protozoan parasites Babesia bovis, Trypanosoma cruzi, and T. brucei is mitogenic for B lymphocytes and stimulates macrophage expression of interleukin-12, tumor necrosis factor alpha, and nitric oxide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shoda, L K; Kegerreis, K A; Suarez, C E; Roditi, I; Corral, R S; Bertot, G M; Norimine, J; Brown, W C

    2001-04-01

    The activation of innate immune responses by genomic DNA from bacteria and several nonvertebrate organisms represents a novel mechanism of pathogen recognition. We recently demonstrated the CpG-dependent mitogenic activity of DNA from the protozoan parasite Babesia bovis for bovine B lymphocytes (W. C. Brown, D. M. Estes, S. E. Chantler, K. A. Kegerreis, and C. E. Suarez, Infect. Immun. 66:5423-5432, 1998). However, activation of macrophages by DNA from protozoan parasites has not been demonstrated. The present study was therefore conducted to determine whether DNA from the protozan parasites B. bovis, Trypanosoma cruzi, and T. brucei activates macrophages to secrete inflammatory mediators associated with protective immunity. DNA from Escherichia coli and all three parasites stimulated B-lymphocyte proliferation and increased macrophage production of interleukin-12 (IL-12), tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha), and nitric oxide (NO). Regulation of IL-12 and NO production occurred at the level of transcription. The amounts of IL-12, TNF-alpha, and NO induced by E. coli and protozoal DNA were strongly correlated (r2 > 0.9) with the frequency of CG dinucleotides in the genome, and immunostimulation by DNA occurred in the order E. coli > or = T. cruzi > T. brucei > B. bovis. Induction of inflammatory mediators by E. coli, T. brucei, and B. bovis DNA was dependent on the presence of unmethylated CpG dinucleotides. However, at high concentrations, E. coli and T. cruzi DNA-mediated macrophage activation was not inhibited following methylation. The recognition of protozoal DNA by B lymphocytes and macrophages may provide an important innate defense mechanism to control parasite replication and promote persistent infection.

  20. Genome-wide expression profiling of in vivo-derived bloodstream parasite stages and dynamic analysis of mRNA alterations during synchronous differentiation in Trypanosoma brucei

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ghazal Peter

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Trypanosomes undergo extensive developmental changes during their complex life cycle. Crucial among these is the transition between slender and stumpy bloodstream forms and, thereafter, the differentiation from stumpy to tsetse-midgut procyclic forms. These developmental events are highly regulated, temporally reproducible and accompanied by expression changes mediated almost exclusively at the post-transcriptional level. Results In this study we have examined, by whole-genome microarray analysis, the mRNA abundance of genes in slender and stumpy forms of T.brucei AnTat1.1 cells, and also during their synchronous differentiation to procyclic forms. In total, five biological replicates representing the differentiation of matched parasite populations derived from five individual mouse infections were assayed, with RNAs being derived at key biological time points during the time course of their synchronous differentiation to procyclic forms. Importantly, the biological context of these mRNA profiles was established by assaying the coincident cellular events in each population (surface antigen exchange, morphological restructuring, cell cycle re-entry, thereby linking the observed gene expression changes to the well-established framework of trypanosome differentiation. Conclusion Using stringent statistical analysis and validation of the derived profiles against experimentally-predicted gene expression and phenotypic changes, we have established the profile of regulated gene expression during these important life-cycle transitions. The highly synchronous nature of differentiation between stumpy and procyclic forms also means that these studies of mRNA profiles are directly relevant to the changes in mRNA abundance within individual cells during this well-characterised developmental transition.

  1. Structure determination of glycogen synthase kinase-3 from Leishmania major and comparative inhibitor structure-activity relationships with Trypanosoma brucei GSK-3

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ojo, Kayode K; Arakaki, Tracy L; Napuli, Alberto J; Inampudi, Krishna K; Keyloun, Katelyn R; Zhang, Li; Hol, Wim G.J.; Verlind, Christophe L.M.J.; Merritt, Ethan A; Van Voorhis, Wesley C [UWASH

    2012-04-24

    Glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3) is a drug target under intense investigation in pharmaceutical companies and constitutes an attractive piggyback target for eukaryotic pathogens. Two different GSKs are found in trypanosomatids, one about 150 residues shorter than the other. GSK-3 short (GeneDB: Tb927.10.13780) has previously been validated genetically as a drug target in Trypanosoma brucei by RNAi induced growth retardation; and chemically by correlation between enzyme and in vitro growth inhibition. Here, we report investigation of the equivalent GSK-3 short enzymes of L. major (LmjF18.0270) and L. infantum (LinJ18_V3.0270, identical in amino acid sequences to LdonGSK-3 short) and a crystal structure of LmajGSK-3 short at 2 Å resolution. The inhibitor structure-activity relationships (SARs) of L. major and L. infantum are virtually identical, suggesting that inhibitors could be useful for both cutaneous and visceral leishmaniasis. Leishmania spp. GSK-3 short has different inhibitor SARs than TbruGSK-3 short, which can be explained mostly by two variant residues in the ATP-binding pocket. Indeed, mutating these residues in the ATP-binding site of LmajGSK-3 short to the TbruGSK-3 short equivalents results in a mutant LmajGSK-3 short enzyme with SAR more similar to that of TbruGSK-3 short. The differences between human GSK-3β (HsGSK-3β) and LmajGSK-3 short SAR suggest that compounds which selectively inhibit LmajGSK-3 short may be found.

  2. Pentamidine movement across the murine blood-brain and blood-cerebrospinal fluid barriers: effect of trypanosome infection, combination therapy, P-glycoprotein, and multidrug resistance-associated protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanderson, Lisa; Dogruel, Murat; Rodgers, Jean; De Koning, Harry Pieter; Thomas, Sarah Ann

    2009-06-01

    During the first stage of human African trypanosomiasis (HAT), Trypanosoma brucei gambiense is found mainly in the blood, and pentamidine treatment is used. Pentamidine is predominantly ineffective once the parasites have invaded the central nervous system (CNS). This lack of efficacy is thought to be due to the inability of pentamidine to cross the blood-brain barrier, although this has never been explored directly. This study addresses this using brain perfusion in healthy mice, P-glycoprotein-deficient mice, and in a murine model of HAT (T. brucei brucei). The influence of additional antitrypanosomal drugs on pentamidine delivery to the CNS also was investigated. Results revealed that [(3)H]pentamidine can cross the blood-brain barrier, although a proportion was retained by the capillary endothelium and failed to reach the healthy or trypanosome-infected brain (up to day 21 p.i.). The CNS distribution of pentamidine was increased in the final (possibly terminal) stage of trypanosome infection, partly because of loss of barrier integrity (days 28-35 p.i.) as measured by [(14)C]sucrose and [(3)H]suramin. Furthermore, pentamidine distribution to the CNS involved influx and efflux [via P-glycoprotein and multidrug resistance-associated protein (MRP)] transporters and was affected by the other antitrypanosomal agents, suramin, melarsoprol, and nifurtimox, but not eflornithine. These interactions could contribute to side effects or lead to the development of parasite resistance to the drugs. Thus, great care must be taken when designing drug combinations containing pentamidine or other diamidine analogs. However, coadministration of P-glycoprotein and/or MRP inhibitors with pentamidine or other diamidines might provide a means of improving efficacy against CNS stage HAT.

  3. Dual functions of α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase E2 in the Krebs cycle and mitochondrial DNA inheritance in Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sykes, Steven E; Hajduk, Stephen L

    2013-01-01

    The dihydrolipoyl succinyltransferase (E2) of the multisubunit α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase complex (α-KD) is an essential Krebs cycle enzyme commonly found in the matrices of mitochondria. African trypanosomes developmentally regulate mitochondrial carbohydrate metabolism and lack a functional Krebs cycle in the bloodstream of mammals. We found that despite the absence of a functional α-KD, bloodstream form (BF) trypanosomes express α-KDE2, which localized to the mitochondrial matrix and inner membrane. Furthermore, α-KDE2 fractionated with the mitochondrial genome, the kinetoplast DNA (kDNA), in a complex with the flagellum. A role for α-KDE2 in kDNA maintenance was revealed in α-KDE2 RNA interference (RNAi) knockdowns. Following RNAi induction, bloodstream trypanosomes showed pronounced growth reduction and often failed to equally distribute kDNA to daughter cells, resulting in accumulation of cells devoid of kDNA (dyskinetoplastic) or containing two kinetoplasts. Dyskinetoplastic trypanosomes lacked mitochondrial membrane potential and contained mitochondria of substantially reduced volume. These results indicate that α-KDE2 is bifunctional, both as a metabolic enzyme and as a mitochondrial inheritance factor necessary for the distribution of kDNA networks to daughter cells at cytokinesis.

  4. A static-cidal assay for Trypanosoma brucei to aid hit prioritisation for progression into drug discovery programmes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manu De Rycker

    Full Text Available Human African Trypanosomiasis is a vector-borne disease of sub-Saharan Africa that causes significant morbidity and mortality. Current therapies have many drawbacks, and there is an urgent need for new, better medicines. Ideally such new treatments should be fast-acting cidal agents that cure the disease in as few doses as possible. Screening assays used for hit-discovery campaigns often do not distinguish cytocidal from cytostatic compounds and further detailed follow-up experiments are required. Such studies usually do not have the throughput required to test the large numbers of hits produced in a primary high-throughput screen. Here, we present a 384-well assay that is compatible with high-throughput screening and provides an initial indication of the cidal nature of a compound. The assay produces growth curves at ten compound concentrations by assessing trypanosome counts at 4, 24 and 48 hours after compound addition. A reduction in trypanosome counts over time is used as a marker for cidal activity. The lowest concentration at which cell killing is seen is a quantitative measure for the cidal activity of the compound. We show that the assay can identify compounds that have trypanostatic activity rather than cidal activity, and importantly, that results from primary high-throughput assays can overestimate the potency of compounds significantly. This is due to biphasic growth inhibition, which remains hidden at low starting cell densities and is revealed in our static-cidal assay. The assay presented here provides an important tool to follow-up hits from high-throughput screening campaigns and avoid progression of compounds that have poor prospects due to lack of cidal activity or overestimated potency.

  5. In vitro and in vivo activities of 2-aminopyrazines and 2-aminopyridines in experimental models of human African trypanosomiasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vodnala, Suman K; Lundbäck, Thomas; Sjöberg, Birger; Svensson, Richard; Rottenberg, Martin E; Hammarström, Lars G J

    2013-02-01

    New drugs for the treatment of human African trypanosomiasis are urgently needed. A number of 2-aminopyrazines/2-aminopyridines were identified as promising leads following a focused screen of 5,500 compounds for Trypanosoma brucei subsp. brucei viability. Described compounds are trypanotoxic in the submicromolar range and show comparably low cytotoxicity on representative mammalian cell lines. Specifically, 6-([6-fluoro-3,4-dihydro-2H-1-benzopyran-4-yl)]oxy)-N-(piperidin-4-yl)pyrazin-2-amine (CBK201352) is trypanotoxic for T. brucei subsp. brucei, T. brucei subsp. gambiense, and T. brucei subsp. rhodesiense and is nontoxic to mammalian cell lines, and in vitro preclinical assays predict promising pharmacokinetic parameters. Mice inoculated intraperitoneally (i.p.) with 25 mg/kg CBK201352 twice daily for 10 days, starting on the day of infection with T. brucei subsp. brucei, show complete clearance of parasites for more than 90 days. Thus, CBK201352 and related analogs are promising leads for the development of novel treatments for human African trypanosomiasis.

  6. Design, synthesis and in vitro antikinetoplastid evaluation of N-acylated putrescine, spermidine and spermine derivatives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jagu, Elodie; Djilali, Rachid; Pomel, Sébastien; Ramiandrasoa, Florence; Pethe, Stéphanie; Labruère, Raphaël; Loiseau, Philippe M; Blonski, Casimir

    2015-01-15

    A structure-activity relationship study on polyamine derivatives led to the synthesis and the determination of antikinetoplastid activity of 17 compounds. Among them, a spermidine derivative (compound 13) was specifically active in vitro against Leishmania donovani axenic amastigotes (IC50 at 5.4μM; Selectivity Index >18.5) and a spermine derivative (compound 28) specifically active against Trypanosoma brucei gambiense (IC50 at 1.9μM; Selectivity Index >52).

  7. Population Vulnerability and Disability in Kenya's Tsetse Fly Habitats

    OpenAIRE

    Grady, Sue C.; Messina, Joseph P.; McCord, Paul F.

    2011-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT), also referred to as sleeping sickness, and African Animal Trypanosomaisis (AAT), known as nagana, are highly prevalent parasitic vector-borne diseases in sub-Saharan Africa. Humans acquire trypanosomiasis following the bite of a tsetse fly infected with the protozoa Trypanosoma brucei (T.b.) spp. -i.e., T.b. gambiense in West and Central Africa and T.b. rhodesiense in East and Southern Africa. Over the last decade HAT diagnostic capacity to est...

  8. Lead optimization of a pyrazole sulfonamide series of Trypanosoma brucei N-myristoyltransferase inhibitors: identification and evaluation of CNS penetrant compounds as potential treatments for stage 2 human African trypanosomiasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brand, Stephen; Norcross, Neil R; Thompson, Stephen; Harrison, Justin R; Smith, Victoria C; Robinson, David A; Torrie, Leah S; McElroy, Stuart P; Hallyburton, Irene; Norval, Suzanne; Scullion, Paul; Stojanovski, Laste; Simeons, Frederick R C; van Aalten, Daan; Frearson, Julie A; Brenk, Ruth; Fairlamb, Alan H; Ferguson, Michael A J; Wyatt, Paul G; Gilbert, Ian H; Read, Kevin D

    2014-12-11

    Trypanosoma brucei N-myristoyltransferase (TbNMT) is an attractive therapeutic target for the treatment of human African trypanosomiasis (HAT). From previous studies, we identified pyrazole sulfonamide, DDD85646 (1), a potent inhibitor of TbNMT. Although this compound represents an excellent lead, poor central nervous system (CNS) exposure restricts its use to the hemolymphatic form (stage 1) of the disease. With a clear clinical need for new drug treatments for HAT that address both the hemolymphatic and CNS stages of the disease, a chemistry campaign was initiated to address the shortfalls of this series. This paper describes modifications to the pyrazole sulfonamides which markedly improved blood-brain barrier permeability, achieved by reducing polar surface area and capping the sulfonamide. Moreover, replacing the core aromatic with a flexible linker significantly improved selectivity. This led to the discovery of DDD100097 (40) which demonstrated partial efficacy in a stage 2 (CNS) mouse model of HAT.

  9. In situ structure of trypanosomal ATP synthase dimer reveals a unique arrangement of catalytic subunits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mühleip, Alexander W.; Dewar, Caroline E.; Schnaufer, Achim; Kühlbrandt, Werner; Davies, Karen M.

    2017-01-01

    We used electron cryotomography and subtomogram averaging to determine the in situ structures of mitochondrial ATP synthase dimers from two organisms belonging to the phylum euglenozoa: Trypanosoma brucei, a lethal human parasite, and Euglena gracilis, a photosynthetic protist. At a resolution of 32.5 Å and 27.5 Å, respectively, the two structures clearly exhibit a noncanonical F1 head, in which the catalytic (αβ)3 assembly forms a triangular pyramid rather than the pseudo-sixfold ring arrangement typical of all other ATP synthases investigated so far. Fitting of known X-ray structures reveals that this unusual geometry results from a phylum-specific cleavage of the α subunit, in which the C-terminal αC fragments are displaced by ∼20 Å and rotated by ∼30° from their expected positions. In this location, the αC fragment is unable to form the conserved catalytic interface that was thought to be essential for ATP synthesis, and cannot convert γ-subunit rotation into the conformational changes implicit in rotary catalysis. The new arrangement of catalytic subunits suggests that the mechanism of ATP generation by rotary ATPases is less strictly conserved than has been generally assumed. The ATP synthases of these organisms present a unique model system for discerning the individual contributions of the α and β subunits to the fundamental process of ATP synthesis. PMID:28096380

  10. Adaptation of Trypanosoma rhodesiense to hypohaptoglobinaemic serum requires transcription of the APOL1 resistance gene in a RNA polymerase I locus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lecordier, Laurence; Uzureau, Pierrick; Tebabi, Patricia; Brauner, Jonathan; Benghiat, Fleur Samantha; Vanhollebeke, Benoit; Pays, Etienne

    2015-08-01

    Human apolipoprotein L1 (APOL1) kills African trypanosomes except Trypanosoma rhodesiense and Trypanosoma gambiense, the parasites causing sleeping sickness. APOL1 uptake into trypanosomes is favoured by its association with the haptoglobin-related protein-haemoglobin complex, which binds to the parasite surface receptor for haptoglobin-haemoglobin. As haptoglobin-haemoglobin can saturate the receptor, APOL1 uptake is increased in haptoglobin-poor (hypohaptoglobinaemic) serum (HyHS). While T. rhodesiense resists APOL1 by RNA polymerase I (pol-I)-mediated expression of the serum resistance-associated (SRA) protein, T. gambiense resists by pol-II-mediated expression of the T. gambiense-specific glycoprotein (TgsGP). Moreover, in T. gambiense resistance to HyHS is linked to haptoglobin-haemoglobin receptor inactivation by mutation. We report that unlike T. gambiense, T. rhodesiense possesses a functional haptoglobin-haemoglobin receptor, and that like T. gambiense experimentally provided with active receptor, this parasite is killed in HyHS because of receptor-mediated APOL1 uptake. However, T. rhodesiense could adapt to low haptoglobin by increasing transcription of SRA. When assayed in Trypanosoma brucei, resistance to HyHS occurred with pol-I-, but not with pol-II-mediated SRA expression. Similarly, T. gambiense provided with active receptor acquired resistance to HyHS only when TgsGP was moved to a pol-I locus. Thus, transcription by pol-I favours adaptive gene regulation, explaining the presence of SRA in a pol-I locus.

  11. Heat reveals faults

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Weinreich, Bernhard [Solarschmiede GmbH, Muenchen (Germany). Engineering Dept.

    2010-07-01

    Gremlins cannot hide from the all-revealing view of a thermographic camera, whereby it makes no difference whether it is a roof-mounted system or a megawatt-sized farm. Just as diverse are the range of faults that, with the growing level of expertise, can now be detected and differentiated with even greater detail. (orig.)

  12. TypeScript revealed

    CERN Document Server

    Maharry, Dan

    2013-01-01

    TypeScript Revealed is a quick 100-page guide to Anders Hejlsberg's new take on JavaScript. With this brief, fast-paced introduction to TypeScript, .NET, Web and Windows 8 application developers who are already familiar with JavaScript will easily get up to speed with TypeScript and decide whether or not to start incorporating it into their own development. TypeScript is 'JavaScript for Application-scale development'; a superset of JavaScript that brings to it an additional object-oriented-like syntax familiar to .NET programmers that compiles down into simple, clean JavaScript that any browse

  13. Revealing the programming process

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bennedsen, Jens; Caspersen, Michael Edelgaard

    2005-01-01

    One of the most important goals of an introductory programming course is that the students learn a systematic approach to the development of computer programs. Revealing the programming process is an important part of this; however, textbooks do not address the issue -- probably because the textb......One of the most important goals of an introductory programming course is that the students learn a systematic approach to the development of computer programs. Revealing the programming process is an important part of this; however, textbooks do not address the issue -- probably because...... the textbook medium is static and therefore ill-suited to expose the process of programming. We have found that process recordings in the form of captured narrated programming sessions are a simple, cheap, and efficient way of providing the revelation.We identify seven different elements of the programming...... process for which process recordings are a valuable communication media in order to enhance the learning process. Student feedback indicates both high learning outcome and superior learning potential compared to traditional classroom teaching....

  14. Android Emotions Revealed

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vlachos, Evgenios; Schärfe, Henrik

    2012-01-01

    This work presents a method for designing facial interfaces for sociable android robots with respect to the fundamental rules of human affect expression. Extending the work of Paul Ekman towards a robotic direction, we follow the judgment-based approach for evaluating facial expressions to test...... in which case an android robot like the Geminoid|DK –a duplicate of an Original person- reveals emotions convincingly; when following an empirical perspective, or when following a theoretical one. The methodology includes the processes of acquiring the empirical data, and gathering feedback on them. Our...... findings are based on the results derived from a number of judgments, and suggest that before programming the facial expressions of a Geminoid, the Original should pass through the proposed procedure. According to our recommendations, the facial expressions of an android should be tested by judges, even...

  15. Identification of trypanosomes in wild animals from Southern Cameroon using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Herder S.

    2002-12-01

    Full Text Available One possible explanation of the maintenance of many historical foci of sleeping sickness in Central Africa could be the existence of a wild animal reservoir. In this study, PCR was used to detect the different trypanosome species present in wild animal captured by hunters in the southern forest belt of Cameroon (Bipindi. Trypanosomes were also detected by a parasitological method (Quantitative buffy coat : QBC. Parasite could not be isolated in culture medium (Kit for in vitro isolation : KIVI. Specific primers of T. brucei s.l., T. congolense forest type, T. congolense savannah type, T. vivax, T. simiae and T. b. gambiense group 1 were used to identify parasites in the blood of 164 animals belonging to 24 different species including ungulates, rodents, pangolins, carnivores, reptiles and primates. Of the 24 studied species, eight were carrying T. b. gambiense group 1. Those parasites pathogenic to man were found in monkeys (Cercocebus torquatus and Cercopithecus nictitans, in ungulates (Cephalophus dorsalis and C. monticola, in carnivores (Nandinia binotata and Genetta servalina and in rodents (Cricetomys gambianus and Atherurus africanus. 13 species (54 % were carrying T. brucei s.l. identified as non-gambiense group 1.

  16. Development of multiplex serological assay for the detection of human African trypanosomiasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nzou, Samson Muuo; Fujii, Yoshito; Miura, Masashi; Mwau, Matilu; Mwangi, Anne Wanjiru; Itoh, Makoto; Salam, Md Abdus; Hamano, Shinjiro; Hirayama, Kenji; Kaneko, Satoshi

    2016-04-01

    Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) is a disease caused by Kinetoplastid infection. Serological tests are useful for epidemiological surveillance. The aim of this study was to develop a multiplex serological assay for HAT to assess the diagnostic value of selected HAT antigens for sero-epidemiological surveillance. We cloned loci encoding eight antigens from Trypanosoma brucei gambiense, expressed the genes in bacterial systems, and purified the resulting proteins. Antigens were subjected to Luminex multiplex assays using sera from HAT and VL patients to assess the antigens' immunodiagnostic potential. Among T. b. gambiense antigens, the 64-kDa and 65-kDa invariant surface glycoproteins (ISGs) and flagellar calcium binding protein (FCaBP) had high sensitivity for sera from T. b. gambiense patients, yielding AUC values of 0.871, 0.737 and 0.858 respectively in receiver operating characteristics (ROC) analysis. The ISG64, ISG65, and FCaBP antigens were partially cross-reactive to sera from Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense patients. The GM6 antigen was cross-reactive to sera from T. b. rhodesiense patients as well as to sera from VL patients. Furthermore, heterogeneous antibody responses to each individual HAT antigen were observed. Testing for multiple HAT antigens in the same panel allowed specific and sensitive detection. Our results demonstrate the utility of applying multiplex assays for development and evaluation of HAT antigens for use in sero-epidemiological surveillance.

  17. Puerto Rico Revealed Preference data

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Revealed preference models provide insights into recreational angler behavior and the economic value of recreational fishing trips. Revealed preference data is...

  18. Revealing the Beast Within

    Science.gov (United States)

    2003-07-01

    Deeply Embedded Massive Stellar Clusters Discovered in Milky Way Powerhouse Summary Peering into a giant molecular cloud in the Milky Way galaxy - known as W49 - astronomers from the European Southern Observatory (ESO) have discovered a whole new population of very massive newborn stars . This research is being presented today at the International Astronomical Union's 25th General Assembly held in Sydney, Australia, by ESO-scientist João Alves. With the help of infrared images obtained during a period of excellent observing conditions with the ESO 3.5-m New Technology Telescope (NTT) at the La Silla Observatory (Chile), the astronomers looked deep into this molecular cloud and discovered four massive stellar clusters, with hot and energetic stars as massive as 120 solar masses. The exceedingly strong radiation from the stars in the largest of these clusters is "powering" a 20 light-year diameter region of mostly ionized hydrogen gas (a "giant HII region"). W49 is one of the most energetic regions of star formation in the Milky Way. With the present discovery, the true sources of the enormous energy have now been revealed for the first time, finally bringing to an end some decades of astronomical speculations and hypotheses. PR Photo 21a/03 : Colour Composite of W49A (NTT+SOFI). PR Photo 21b/03 : Radio and Near-Infrared Composite of W49A Giant molecular clouds Stars form predominantly inside Giant Molecular Clouds which populate our Galaxy, the Milky Way. One of the most prominent of these is W49 , which has a mass of a million solar masses. It is located some 37,000 light-years away and is the most luminous star-forming region known in our home galaxy: its luminosity is several million times the luminosity of our Sun. A smaller region within this cloud is denoted W49A - this is one of the strongest radio-emitting areas known in the Galaxy . Massive stars are excessive in all ways. Compared to their smaller and ligther brethren, they form at an Olympic speed and

  19. Clinical features, diagnosis, and treatment of human African trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kennedy, Peter Ge

    2013-02-01

    Human African trypanosomiasis, or sleeping sickness, is caused by infection with parasites of the genus Trypanosoma, transmitted by the tsetse fly. The disease has two forms, Trypanosoma brucei (T b) rhodesiense and T b gambiense; and is almost always fatal if untreated. Despite a recent reduction in the number of reported cases, patients with African trypanosomiasis continue to present major challenges to clinicians. Because treatment for CNS-stage disease can be very toxic, diagnostic staging to distinguish early-stage from late-stage disease when the CNS in invaded is crucial but remains problematic. Melarsoprol is the only available treatment for late-stage T b rhodesiense infection, but can be lethal to 5% of patients owing to post-treatment reactive encephalopathy. Eflornithine combined with nifurtimox is the first-line treatment for late-stage T b gambiense. New drugs are in the pipeline for treatment of CNS human African trypanosomiasis, giving rise to cautious optimism.

  20. Survey on Trypanosoma spp. infection of dogs in Gabon and its epidemiological implications for sleeping sickness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watier-Grillot, S; Herder, S; Marié, J-L; Bourry, O; Cuny, G; Davoust, B

    2016-05-01

    This survey screened native dogs (Canis familiaris) in Gabon (Africa) for trypanosome infection. A total of 376 apparently healthy dogs, divided into two populations, were examined. The first group included 252 semi-domesticated dogs inhabiting 16 villages of the Ogooué-Ivindo Province, a rural inland area in northeast Gabon, and the second group 124 dogs belonging to protection companies or families from Libreville (n = 113) and Port-Gentil (n = 11), in the coastal area of Gabon. Both study areas include active or former foci of sleeping sickness in Gabon. Molecular testing (polymerase chain reaction) was performed on blood samples from dogs in both groups. All dogs were negative for T. congolense ("savanna type" and "forest type"). Eighteen dogs (4.7%), however, tested positive for T. brucei s.l.: 3% (8/252) were from the Ogooué-Ivindo Province, and 8% (10/124) from the coastal area. These animals may be potential reservoirs of the parasite T. brucei gambiense, responsible for human African trypanosomiasis. This hypothesis, as well as the role of the dog as a sentinel of human infection by T. brucei gambiense, should be investigated in further studies.

  1. Cell-cycle-regulated control of VSG expression site silencing by histones and histone chaperones ASF1A and CAF-1b in Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alsford, Sam; Horn, David

    2012-11-01

    Antigenic variation in African trypanosomes involves monoallelic expression and reversible silencing of variant surface glycoprotein (VSG) genes found adjacent to telomeres in polycistronic expression sites (ESs). We assessed the impact on ES silencing of five candidate essential chromatin-associated factors that emerged from a genome-wide RNA interference viability screen. Using this approach, we demonstrate roles in VSG ES silencing for two histone chaperones. Defects in S-phase progression in cells depleted for histone H3, or either chaperone, highlight in particular the link between chromatin assembly and DNA replication control. S-phase checkpoint arrest was incomplete, however, allowing G2/M-specific VSG ES derepression following knockdown of histone H3. In striking contrast, knockdown of anti-silencing factor 1A (ASF1A) allowed for derepression at all cell cycle stages, whereas knockdown of chromatin assembly factor 1b (CAF-1b) revealed derepression predominantly in S-phase and G2/M. Our results support a central role for chromatin in maintaining VSG ES silencing. ASF1A and CAF-1b appear to play constitutive and DNA replication-dependent roles, respectively, in the recycling and assembly of chromatin. Defects in these functions typically lead to arrest in S-phase but defective cells can also progress through the cell cycle leading to nucleosome depletion and derepression of telomeric VSG ESs.

  2. West-African trypanosomiasis in a returned traveller from Ghana: an unusual cause of progressive neurological decline.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elliott, Ivo; Patel, Trupti; Shah, Jagrit; Venkatesan, Pradhib

    2014-08-14

    West-African trypanosomiasis caused by Trypanosoma brucei gambiense is a rare imported infection presenting with somnolence, lymphadenopathy and wide-ranging neurological symptoms. A 67-year-old Caucasian man presented with a 10-month history of cognitive deterioration, ataxic gait, somnolence and urinary incontinence. His symptoms had progressed more rapidly over the course of a month prior to admission. Serological testing confirmed a diagnosis of West-African trypanosomiasis. The patient was successfully treated with eflornithine and made a good recovery. West-African trypanosomiasis should be considered in the differential diagnosis of unexplained cognitive decline in those with a relevant travel history. If left untreated, the condition is universally fatal.

  3. Evaluation of Antigens for Development of a Serological Test for Human African Trypanosomiasis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biéler, Sylvain; Waltenberger, Harald; Barrett, Michael P.; McCulloch, Richard; Mottram, Jeremy C.; Carrington, Mark; Schwaeble, Wilhelm; McKerrow, James; Phillips, Margaret A.; Michels, Paul A.; Büscher, Philippe; Sanchez, Jean-Charles; Bishop, Richard; Robinson, Derrick R.; Bangs, James; Ferguson, Michael; Nerima, Barbara; Albertini, Audrey; Michel, Gerd; Radwandska, Magdalena; Ndung’u, Joseph Mathu

    2016-01-01

    Background Control and elimination of human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) can be accelerated through the use of diagnostic tests that are more accurate and easier to deploy. The goal of this work was to evaluate the immuno-reactivity of antigens and identify candidates to be considered for development of a simple serological test for the detection of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense or T. b. rhodesiense infections, ideally both. Methodology/Principal Findings The reactivity of 35 antigens was independently evaluated by slot blot and ELISA against sera from both T. b. gambiense and T. b. rhodesiense infected patients and controls. The antigens that were most reactive by both tests to T. b. gambiense sera were the membrane proteins VSG LiTat 1.3, VSG LiTat 1.5 and ISG64. Reactivity to T. b. rhodesiense sera was highest with VSG LiTat 1.3, VSG LiTat 1.5 and SRA, although much lower than with T. b. gambiense samples. The reactivity of all possible combinations of antigens was also calculated. When the slot blot results of 2 antigens were paired, a VSG LiTat 1.3- ISG75 combination performed best on T. b. gambiense sera, while a VSG LiTat 1.3-VSG LiTat 1.5 combination was the most reactive using ELISA. A combination of SRA and either VSG LiTat 1.3 or VSG LiTat 1.5 had the highest reactivity on T. b. rhodesiense sera according to slot blot, while in ELISA, pairing SRA with either GM6 or VSG LiTat 1.3 yielded the best results. Conclusions This study identified antigens that were highly reactive to T. b. gambiense sera, which could be considered for developing a serological test for gambiense HAT, either individually or in combination. Antigens with potential for inclusion in a test for T. b. rhodesiense HAT were also identified, but because their reactivity was comparatively lower, a search for additional antigens would be required before developing a test for this form of the disease. PMID:27936225

  4. Decision Making and Revealed Preference

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    de la Rosa, Leonidas Enrique

    If our decision-making processes are to some extent shaped by evolutionary pressures and our environment is different from that to which we adapted, some of our choices will not be in our best interest. But revealed preference is the only tool that we have so far to conduct a normative analysis...

  5. Revealed preference with limited consideration

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Demuynck, T.; Seel, C.

    2014-01-01

    We derive revealed preference tests for models where individuals use consideration sets to simplify their consumption problem. Our basic test provides necessary and sufficient conditions for consistency of observed choices with the existence of consideration set restrictions. The same conditions can

  6. Human African trypanosomiasis in endemic populations and travellers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blum, J A; Neumayr, A L; Hatz, C F

    2012-06-01

    Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) or sleeping sickness is caused by the protozoan parasites Trypanosoma brucei (T.b.) gambiense (West African form) and T.b. rhodesiense (East African form) that are transmitted by the bite of the tsetse fly, Glossina spp.. Whereas most patients in endemic populations are infected with T.b. gambiense, most tourists are infected with T.b. rhodesiense. In endemic populations, T.b. gambiense HAT is characterized by chronic and intermittent fever, headache, pruritus, and lymphadenopathy in the first stage and by sleep disturbances and neuro-psychiatric disorders in the second stage. Recent descriptions of the clinical presentation of T.b. rhodesiense in endemic populations show a high variability in different foci. The symptomatology of travellers is markedly different from the usual textbook descriptions of African HAT patients. The onset of both infections is almost invariably an acute and febrile disease. Diagnosis and treatment are difficult and rely mostly on old methods and drugs. However, new molecular diagnostic technologies are under development. A promising new drug combination is currently evaluated in a phase 3 b study and further new drugs are under evaluation.

  7. Transparency masters for mathematics revealed

    CERN Document Server

    Berman, Elizabeth

    1980-01-01

    Transparency Masters for Mathematics Revealed focuses on master diagrams that can be used for transparencies for an overhead projector or duplicator masters for worksheets. The book offers information on a compilation of master diagrams prepared by John R. Stafford, Jr., audiovisual supervisor at the University of Missouri at Kansas City. Some of the transparencies are designed to be shown horizontally. The initial three masters are number lines and grids that can be used in a mathematics course, while the others are adaptations of text figures which are slightly altered in some instances. The

  8. Human African trypanosomiasis with 7-year incubation period: clinical, laboratory and neuroimaging findings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wengert, Oliver; Kopp, Marcel; Siebert, Eberhard; Stenzel, Werner; Hegasy, Guido; Suttorp, Norbert; Stich, August; Zoller, Thomas

    2014-06-01

    Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT), also referred to as "sleeping sickness", is caused by the parasite Trypanosoma brucei. Diagnosing imported HAT outside endemic areas is difficult and diagnosis is often delayed. We report a case of imported human African trypanosomiasis caused by Trypanosoma brucei gambiense with an unusually long incubation period of at least 7 years. A 33 year old male African patient, a former resident of Cameroon, presented with a 4-month history of progressive personality changes. A few weeks before presentation the patient had first been admitted to a psychiatric ward and received antidepressant treatment, until a lumbar puncture showed pleocytosis and then antibiotic treatment for suspected neuroborreliosis was initiated. The patient continued to deteriorate during antibiotic treatment and became increasingly lethargic. Under antiparasitic and anti-inflammatory treatment, the condition of the patient gradually improved over the following months and he recovered completely after 24 months of follow-up. This well-documented case illustrates typical difficulties in establishing the correct diagnosis outside endemic areas and provides an overview of typical clinical, neuropathological and neuroimaging findings in T. b. gambiense trypanosomiasis, guiding the clinician in establishing the correct diagnosis in this rare disease.

  9. Identification of trans-sialidases as a common mediator of endothelial cell activation by African trypanosomes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zeinab Ammar

    Full Text Available Understanding African Trypanosomiasis (AT host-pathogen interaction is the key to an "anti-disease vaccine", a novel strategy to control AT. Here we provide a better insight into this poorly described interaction by characterizing the activation of a panel of endothelial cells by bloodstream forms of four African trypanosome species, known to interact with host endothelium. T. congolense, T. vivax, and T. b. gambiense activated the endothelial NF-κB pathway, but interestingly, not T. b. brucei. The parasitic TS (trans-sialidases mediated this NF-κB activation, remarkably via their lectin-like domain and induced production of pro-inflammatory molecules not only in vitro but also in vivo, suggesting a considerable impact on pathogenesis. For the first time, TS activity was identified in T. b. gambiense BSF which distinguishes it from the subspecies T. b. brucei. The corresponding TS were characterized and shown to activate endothelial cells, suggesting that TS represent a common mediator of endothelium activation among trypanosome species with divergent physiopathologies.

  10. A current analysis of chemotherapy strategies for the treatment of human African trypanosomiasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Babokhov, Peter; Sanyaolu, Adekunle O; Oyibo, Wellington A; Fagbenro-Beyioku, Adetayo F; Iriemenam, Nnaemeka C

    2013-07-01

    Despite the recent advances in drug research, finding a safe, effective, and easy to use chemotherapy for human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) remains a challenging task. The four current anti-trypanosomiasis drugs have major disadvantages that limit more widespread use of these drugs in the endemic regions of sub-Saharan Africa. Pentamidine and suramin are limited by their effectiveness against the only first stage of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense and Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense, respectively. In addition, melarsoprol and eflornithine (two second stage drugs) each have disadvantages of their own. The former is toxic and has increasing treatment failures while the latter is expensive, laborious to administer, and lacks efficacy against T. b. rhodesiense. Furthermore, melarsoprol's toxicity and decreasing efficacy are glaring problems and phasing out the drug as a frontline treatment against T. b. gambiense is now possible with the emergence of competent, safe combination chemotherapies such as nifurtimox-eflornithine combination treatment (NECT). The future of eflornithine, on the other hand, is more promising. The drug is useful in the context of combination chemotherapy and potential orally administered analogues. Due to the limits of monotherapies, greater emphasis should be placed on the research and development of combination chemotherapies, based on the successful clinical tests with NECT and its current use as a frontline anti-trypanosomiasis treatment. This review discussed the current and future chemotherapy strategies for the treatment of HAT.

  11. Plan competitions reveal entrepreneurial talent

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Madison, Alison L.

    2011-05-15

    Monthly economic diversity column for Tri-City Herald business section. Excerpt below: There’s something to be said for gaining valuable real-world experience in a structured, nurturing environment. Take for instance learning to scuba dive in the comfort of my resort pool rather than immediately hanging out with sharks while I figure out little things like oxygen tanks and avoiding underwater panic attacks. Likewise, graduate students are getting some excellent, supportive real-world training through university business plan competitions. These competitions are places where smart minds, new technologies, months of preparation and coaching, and some healthy pre-presentation jitters collide to reveal not only solid new business ideas, but also some promising entrepreneurial talent. In fact, professionals from around our region descend upon college campuses every spring to judge these events, which help to bridge the gap between academics and the real technology and business-driven economy.

  12. Focus groups reveal consumer ambivalence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1983-01-01

    According to qualitative research, Salvadoreans are ambivalent about the use of contraceptives. Since complete responsibility for management of the CSM project was accepted by the Association Demografica Salvadorena (ADS), the agency which operates the contraceptive social marketing project in El Salvador, in November 1980, the need for decisions in such areas as product price increases, introduction of new condom brands, promotion of the vaginal foaming tablet, and assessment of product sales performance had arisen. The ICSMP funded market research, completed during 1983, was intended to provide the data on which such decisions by ADS could be based. The qualitative research involved 8 focus groups, comprised of men and women, aged 18-45, contraceptive users and nonusers, from the middle and lower socioeconomic strata of the city of San Salvador and other suburban areas. In each group a moderator led discussion of family planning and probed respondents for specific attitudes, knowledge, and behavior regarding the use of contraceptives. To assess attitudes at a more emotional level, moderators asked respondents to "draw" their ideas on certain issues. A marked discrepancy was revealed between respondents' intellectual responses to the issues raised in group discussion, as opposed to their feelings expressed in the drawings. Intellectually, participants responded very positively to family planning practice, but when they were asked to draw their perceptions, ambivalent feelings emerged. Drawings of both the user and the nonuser convey primarily negative aspects for either choice. The user is tense and moody toward her children; the nonuser loses her attractiveness and "dies." Figures also show drawings of some of the attitudes of single and married male participants. 1 drawing shows an incomplete and a complete circle, symbolizing a sterilized man (incomplete) and a nonsterilized man (complete). Another picture depicts a chained man who has lost his freedom

  13. Revealing conceptual understanding of international business

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ashley, S.; Schaap, H.; Bruijn, E. de

    2016-01-01

    This study aims to identify an adequate approach for revealing conceptual understanding in higher professional education. Revealing students’ conceptual understanding is an important step towards developing effective curricula, assessment and aligned teaching strategies to enhance conceptual

  14. Revealing conceptual understanding of international business

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ashley, S.M.; Schaap, H.; de Bruijn, E.

    2016-01-01

    This study aims to identify an adequate approach for revealing conceptual understanding in higher professional education. Revealing students’ conceptual understanding is an important step towards developing effective curricula, assessment and aligned teaching strategies to enhance conceptual underst

  15. 布氏锥虫未知CCCH-型锌指蛋白TbZC3H8功能特性的初步分析%Characterization of the hypothetical CCCH-type zinc-finger protein TbZC3H8 in Trypanosoma brucei

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    雷霁卿; 刘罗根; 郭学敏

    2013-01-01

    Objective To characterize the properties and functions of putative zinc-finger protein TbZC3H8 in Trypanosoma brucei.Methods Sequence analysis and motifs/domains prediction were performed through the protein database searches.An inducible RNAi cell line was generated to study the effect of TbZC3H8 repression on cell viability,and the RNAi knockdown efficiency was estimated by RT-QPCR and Western blot.The cell line ectopically expressing C-terminal mycTAP tagged TbZC3H8 was generated and used to identify the composition of TbZC3H8 protein complexes through the combination of tandem affinity purification and mass spectrometric analysis.Subcellular localization of the TbZC3H8 protein was determined by immunofluorescence microscopy.Results The CCCH zinc-finger motif of TbZC3H8 is highly conserved in kinetoplastid parasites.Repression of TbZC3H8 by RNAi resulted in the growth inhibition.The TbZC3H8 protein complex was found to contain both unknown proteins and RNA-binding proteins.TbZC3H8 was found to localize in the cytoplasm and the expression level was not changed upon the heat shock and serum starvation.Conclusion TbZC3H8 is essential for the growth of T.brucei.The binding of ZC3H8 with RNA-binding proteins suggested that ZC3H8 might play a role in RNA processing and metabolism.%目的 通过RNAi和蛋白复合物鉴定来初步分析布氏锥虫未知锌指蛋白TbZC3H8的特性及功能.方法 运用蛋白数据库和分析软件对TbZC3H8进行序列分析和结构域预测;构建RNAi诱导表达细胞株分析TbZC3H8经RNAi敲低后对锥虫生长的影响,并通过RT-QPCR和Western blot检测RNAi干扰效率;构建异位融合表达myc-TAP标签的TbZC3H8细胞株,采用串联亲和纯化合并质谱鉴定其蛋白复合物组成;采用免疫荧光分析蛋白定位.结果 TbZC3H8的CCCH结构域在动基体原虫中高度保守;RNAi下调TbZC3H8后明显抑制了锥虫复制;TbZC3H8蛋白复合物中包含多种未知蛋白

  16. 伊氏锥虫、马媾疫锥虫、布氏锥虫、刚果锥虫的18S rDNA部分序列测定与系统发育关系%Sequence and phylogenetic analysis of partial 18S rDNA gene for Trypanosoma evanis, Trypanosoma equiperdum, Trypanosoma brucei and Trypanosoma congolense isolates

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    周勇志; 周金林; 沈杰; 龚海燕; 向飞宇; 黄兵

    2006-01-01

    对伊氏锥虫(Trypanosoma evansi):新疆株(XJCA)、湖北株(HBM)、云南株(YNB)、广东株(GDB2);马媾疫锥虫(Trypanosoma equiperdum)、布氏锥虫(Trypanosoma brucei)、刚果锥虫(Trypanosoma congolense)提取基因组DNA,根据已报道的伊氏锥虫株18SrDNA基因序列设计合成引物,用PCR扩增了锥虫虫株基因组DNA,伊氏锥虫新疆株、湖北株、云南株、广东株、布氏锥虫、刚果锥虫均为373 bp的片段;马媾疫锥虫为372 bp的片段,PCR产物经电泳鉴定后用试剂盒回收纯化,纯化后PCR产物经连接、转化后测序,将测得的序列用DNAMAN软件分析并与国外已发表的相应序列进行了同源性比较,并绘制了系统发育进化树.结果与国外AJ009153、AJ223564、D89527株同源性达到99%~100%,与另外11株同源性75%.本研究为锥虫分子流行病学研究及分类研究打下基础.

  17. Identification of different trypanosome species in the mid-guts of tsetse flies of the Malanga (Kimpese sleeping sickness focus of the Democratic Republic of Congo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simo Gustave

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Malanga sleeping sickness focus of the Democratic Republic of Congo has shown an epidemic evolution of disease during the last century. However, following case detection and treatment, the prevalence of the disease decreased considerably. No active survey has been undertaken in this focus for a couple of years. To understand the current epidemiological status of sleeping sickness as well as the animal African trypanosomiasis in the Malanga focus, we undertook the identification of tsetse blood meals as well as different trypanosome species in flies trapped in this focus. Methods Pyramidal traps were use to trap tsetse flies. All flies caught were identified and live flies were dissected and their mid-guts collected. Fly mid-gut was used for the molecular identification of the blood meal source, as well as for the presence of different trypanosome species. Results About 949 Glossina palpalis palpalis were trapped; 296 (31.2% of which were dissected, 60 (20.3% blood meals collected and 57 (19.3% trypanosome infections identified. The infection rates were 13.4%, 5.1%, 3.5% and 0.4% for Trypanosoma congolense savannah type, Trypanosoma brucei s.l., Trypanosoma congolense forest type and Trypanosoma vivax, respectively. Three mixed infections including Trypanosoma brucei s.l. and Trypanosoma congolense savannah type, and one mixed infection of Trypanosoma vivax and Trypanosoma congolense savannah type were identified. Eleven Trypanosoma brucei gambiense infections were identified; indicating an active circulation of this trypanosome subspecies. Of all the identified blood meals, about 58.3% were identified as being taken on pigs, while 33.3% and 8.3% were from man and other mammals, respectively. Conclusion The presence of Trypanosoma brucei in tsetse mid-guts associated with human blood meals is indicative of an active transmission of this parasite between tsetse and man. The considerable number of pig blood meals combined

  18. Immunodiagnosis of bovine trypanosomiasis in Anambra and Imo states, Nigeria, using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay: zoonotic implications to human health

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.C. Ezeani

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available Background & objectives: The prevalence of trypanosomiasis was studied in cattle, being a major source of animal protein in Nigeria, thus, a very likely means of spread of Human African Trypano-somosis (HAT. Methods: Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA was used to diagnose bovine trypanosomiasis in 264 samples collected from adult cattle of mixed breeds, age and sex, in Anambra and Imo states, Nigeria. Results: Out of 264 samples analysed, 21 (7.96% were seropositive for Trypanosoma congolense while 20 (7.58% were seropositive for T. vivax and 8 (3.03% were seropositive for T. brucei infections in both the states. Interpretation & conclusion: The predominant species was found to be T. congolense. Mixed infection of three species, T. vivax, T. congolense and T. brucei was found to dominate other mixed infections in both the states. ELISA detected the infection of the three species of trypanosomes in the same group of animals. The usefulness of antigen capture ELISA in the diagnosis of human or animal trypanosomiasis was established, and the possibility of the spread of HAT caused by T. brucei gambiense and T.b. rhodesiense through cattle was expressed.

  19. Human African trypanosomiasis: a review of non-endemic cases in the past 20 years.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Migchelsen, Stephanie J; Büscher, Philippe; Hoepelman, Andy I M; Schallig, Henk D F H; Adams, Emily R

    2011-08-01

    Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) is caused by sub-species of the parasitic protozoan Trypanosoma brucei and is transmitted by tsetse flies, both of which are endemic only to sub-Saharan Africa. Several cases have been reported in non-endemic areas, such as North America and Europe, due to travelers, ex-patriots or military personnel returning from abroad or due to immigrants from endemic areas. In this paper, non-endemic cases reported over the past 20 years are reviewed; a total of 68 cases are reported, 19 cases of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense HAT and 49 cases of Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense HAT. Patients ranged in age from 19 months to 72 years and all but two patients survived. Physicians in non-endemic areas should be aware of the signs and symptoms of this disease, as well as methods of diagnosis and treatment, especially as travel to HAT endemic areas increases. We recommend extension of the current surveillance systems such as TropNetEurop and maintaining and promotion of existing reference centers of diagnostics and expertise. Important contact information is also included, should physicians require assistance in diagnosing or treating HAT.

  20. Production and preliminary evaluation of Trypanosoma evansi HSP70 for antibody detection in Equids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Jaideep; Chaudhury, Ashok; Bera, Bidhan C; Kumar, Ritesh; Kumar, Rajender; Tatu, Utpal; Yadav, Suresh Chandra

    2015-12-01

    The present immuno-diagnostic method using soluble antigens from whole cell lysate antigen for trypanosomosis have certain inherent problems like lack of standardized and reproducible antigens, as well as ethical issues due to in vivo production, that could be alleviated by in vitro production. In the present study we have identified heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) from T. evansi proteome. The nucleotide sequence of T. evansi HSP70 was 2116 bp, which encodes 690 amino acid residues. The phylogenetic analysis of T. evansi HSP70 showed that T. evansi occurred within Trypanosoma clade and is most closely related to T. brucei brucei and T. brucei gambiense, whereas T. congolense HSP70 laid in separate clade. The two partial HSP70 sequences (HSP-1 from N-terminal region and HSP-2 from C-terminal region) were expressed and evaluated as diagnostic antigens using experimentally infected equine serum samples. Both recombinant proteins detected antibody in immunoblot using serum samples from experimental infected donkeys with T. evansi. Recombinant HSP-2 showed comparable antibody response to Whole cell lysate (WCL) antigen in immunoblot and ELISA. The initial results indicated that HSP70 has potential to detect the T. evansi infection and needs further validation on large set of equine serum samples.

  1. Saturn's Rings Reveal Unexpected Phenomena

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李颖

    2004-01-01

    Safely in orbit around Saturn, NASA's Cassini spacecraft sent back its first close-up images of the massive planet's rings on July 1, revealing an unexpectedly varied terrain featuring surprisingly sharp edges, braids and delicate ridges.

  2. The detection and treatment of human African trypanosomiasis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bouteille B

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Bernard Bouteille,1 Alain Buguet21Laboratory of Parasitology, Dupuytren University Hospital of Limoges, France; 2Polyclinic Marie-Louise Poto-Djembo, Pointe-Noire, CongoAbstract: Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT is caused by the injection of Trypanosoma brucei (T. b. gambiense or T. b. rhodesiense by Glossina, the tsetse fly. Three historical eras followed the exclusive clinical approach of the 19th century. At the turn of the century, the “initial research” era was initiated because of the dramatic spread of HAT throughout intertropical Africa, and scientists discovered the agent and its vector. Two entities, recurrent fever and sleeping sickness, were then considered a continuum between hemolymphatic stage 1 and meningoencephalitic stage 2. Treatments were developed. Soon after World War I, specific services and mobile teams were created, initiating the “epidemiological” era, during which populations were visited, screened, and treated. As a result, by 1960, annual new cases were rare. New mass screening and staging tools were then developed in a third, “modern” era, especially to counter a new epidemic wave. Currently, diagnosis still relies on microscopic detection of trypanosomes without (wet and thick blood films or with concentration techniques (capillary tube centrifugation, miniature anion-exchange centrifugation technique. Staging is a vital step.Stage 1 patients are treated on site with pentamidine or suramin. However, stage 2 patients are treated in specialized facilities, using drugs that are highly toxic and/or that require complex administration procedures (melarsoprol, eflornithine, or nifurtimox-eflornithine combination therapy. Suramin and melarsoprol are the only medications active against Rhodesian HAT. Staging still relies on cerebrospinal fluid examination for trypanosome detection and white blood cell counts: stage 1, absence of trypanosomes, white blood cell counts ≤ 5/µL; stage 2, presence of

  3. Comparison of the Therapeutic Effects of Four Antiparasitic Protozoan Drugs on Trypanosoma evansi, T. equiperdum and T. b.brucei in Mice%四种抗寄生原虫药物对伊氏锥虫、马媾疫锥虫和布氏锥虫感染的治疗作用

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    戴晓俐; 赖德华; 伦照荣

    2006-01-01

    目的 研究分析伊氏锥虫(Trypanosoma evansi)、马媾疫锥虫(T.equiperdum)和布氏锥虫指名亚种(T.b.brucei)对四种抗寄生原虫药物(氯喹、甲硝唑、Mel Cy和贝尼尔)抗性的差异,及药物剂量和治疗时间对治疗效果的影响.方法 将105锥虫经腹腔接种小鼠,感染后于不同时间用不同剂量的药物对小鼠进行治疗,观察小鼠虫血症的变化和死亡情况.结果 氯喹和甲硝唑在单用或合用时对这3种锥虫没有可见的疗效,MelCy与贝尼尔则具有良好的治疗效果;其中1.6 mg/kg的Mel Cy对3种锥虫都有完全的治愈作用;贝尼尔在7 mg/kg的剂量水平对马媾疫锥虫和布氏锥虫也有完全的杀灭作用.马媾疫锥虫和布氏锥虫对贝尼尔敏感,但伊氏锥虫对贝尼尔则表现出明显的抗药性.提高药物的注射剂量或在感染早期治疗可以延长感染小鼠的存活时间.结论 伊氏锥虫对所用药物的抗性最强,其次为布氏锥虫指名亚种,马媾疫锥虫对药物最敏感.加大药物注射剂量和感染后及早治疗可提高治愈率.

  4. REVEAL: Software Documentation and Platform Migration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Michael A.; Veibell, Victoir T.

    2011-01-01

    The Research Environment for Vehicle Embedded Analysis on Linux (REVEAL) is reconfigurable data acquisition software designed for network-distributed test and measurement applications. In development since 2001, it has been successfully demonstrated in support of a number of actual missions within NASA's Suborbital Science Program. Improvements to software configuration control were needed to properly support both an ongoing transition to operational status and continued evolution of REVEAL capabilities. For this reason the project described in this report targets REVEAL software source documentation and deployment of the software on a small set of hardware platforms different from what is currently used in the baseline system implementation. This presentation specifically describes the actions taken over a ten week period by two undergraduate student interns and serves as an overview of the content of the final report for that internship.

  5. Sleeping sickness

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... include: Eflornithine (for T. b. gambiense only) Melarsoprol Pentamidine (for T. b. gambiense only) Suramin (Antrypol) Some ... Pentamidine injections protect against T. b. gambiense, but not against T. b. rhodesiense . Because this medicine is ...

  6. Revealing the Anatomy of Vote Trading

    CERN Document Server

    Guerrero, Omar A

    2016-01-01

    Cooperation in the form of vote trading, also known as logrolling, is central for law-making processes, shaping the development of democratic societies. Empirical evidence of logrolling is scarce and limited to highly specific situations because existing methods are not easily applicable to broader contexts. We have developed a general and scalable methodology for revealing a network of vote traders, allowing us to measure logrolling on a large scale. Analysis on more than 9 million votes spanning 40 years in the U.S. Congress reveals a higher logrolling prevalence in the Senate and an overall decreasing trend over recent congresses, coincidental with high levels of political polarization. Our method is applicable in multiple contexts, shedding light on many aspects of logrolling and opening new doors in the study of hidden cooperation.

  7. Cardiac alterations in human African trypanosomiasis (T.b. gambiense with respect to the disease stage and antiparasitic treatment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johannes A Blum

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: In Human African Trypanosomiasis, neurological symptoms dominate and cardiac involvement has been suggested. Because of increasing resistance to the available drugs for HAT, new compounds are desperately needed. Evaluation of cardiotoxicity is one parameter of drug safety, but without knowledge of the baseline heart involvement in HAT, cardiologic findings and drug-induced alterations will be difficult to interpret. The aims of the study were to assess the frequency and characteristics of electrocardiographic findings in the first stage of HAT, to compare these findings to those of second stage patients and healthy controls and to assess any potential effects of different therapeutic antiparasitic compounds with respect to ECG changes after treatment. METHODS: Four hundred and six patients with first stage HAT were recruited in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Angola and Sudan between 2002 and 2007 in a series of clinical trials comparing the efficacy and safety of the experimental treatment DB289 to the standard first stage treatment, pentamidine. These ECGs were compared to the ECGs of healthy volunteers (n = 61 and to those of second stage HAT patients (n = 56. RESULTS: In first and second stage HAT, a prolonged QTc interval, repolarization changes and low voltage were significantly more frequent than in healthy controls. Treatment in first stage was associated with repolarization changes in both the DB289 and the pentamidine group to a similar extent. The QTc interval did not change during treatment. CONCLUSIONS: Cardiac involvement in HAT, as demonstrated by ECG alterations, appears early in the evolution of the disease. The prolongation of the QTC interval comprises a risk of fatal arrhythmias if new drugs with an additional potential of QTC prolongation will be used. During treatment ECG abnormalities such as repolarization changes consistent with peri-myocarditis occur frequently and appear to be associated with the disease stage, but not with a specific drug.

  8. Mediastinal Mature Teratoma Revealed by Empyema

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammed Raoufi

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Teratomas are germ cell tumors, manifested with a great variety of clinical features; the most common extragonadal site is the anterior mediastinum. In this case, we report the patient with a large mature mediastinal teratoma with several components of ectodermal and endothermal epithelium. A 24-year-old female patient presented with history of persistent chest pain and progressively aggravating dyspnea for the previous 3 months. A chest X-ray showed a large opacity of the entire left hemithorax. Transcutaneous needle aspiration revealed a purulent fluid. The tube thoracostomy was introduced and the effusion was evacuated. Some weeks later, patient was seen in emergency for persistent cough and lateral chest pain. CT scan revealed a mass of the left hemithorax. The mass showed heterogeneous density, without compressing mediastinum great vessels and left hilar structures. Lipase value was elevated in needle aspiration. The patient underwent a total resection of the mediastinum mass via a left posterolateral thoracotomy. Microscopy revealed a mature teratoma with cystic structures. The patient subsequently made a full recovery. This case provide benign mediastinal teratoma with total atelectasis of left lung and elevated lipase value in needle transcutaneous aspiration; this event is explained by pancreatic component in the cystic tumor. Total removal of the tumor is adequate treatment for this type of teratoma and the prognosis is excellent.

  9. Beyond Tsetse--Implications for Research and Control of Human African Trypanosomiasis Epidemics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Welburn, Susan C; Molyneux, David H; Maudlin, Ian

    2016-03-01

    Epidemics of both forms of human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) are confined to spatially stable foci in Sub-Saharan Africa while tsetse distribution is widespread. Infection rates of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense in tsetse are extremely low and cannot account for the catastrophic epidemics of Gambian HAT (gHAT) seen over the past century. Here we examine the origins of gHAT epidemics and evidence implicating human genetics in HAT epidemiology. We discuss the role of stress causing breakdown of heritable tolerance in silent disease carriers generating gHAT outbreaks and see how peculiarities in the epidemiologies of gHAT and Rhodesian HAT (rHAT) impact on strategies for disease control.

  10. African trypanosomiasis and antibodies: implications for vaccination, therapy and diagnosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magez, Stefan; Radwanska, Magdalena

    2009-10-01

    African trypanosomiasis causes devastating effects on human populations and livestock herds in large parts of sub-Saharan Africa. Control of the disease is hampered by the lack of any efficient vaccination results in a field setting, and the severe side effects of current drug therapies. In addition, with the exception of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense infections, the diagnosis of trypanosomiasis has to rely on microscopic analysis of blood samples, as other specific tools are nonexistent. However, new developments in biotechnology, which include loop-mediated isothermal amplification as an adaptation to conventional PCR, as well as the antibody engineering that has allowed the development of Nanobody technology, offer new perspectives in both the detection and treatment of trypanosomiasis. In addition, recent data on parasite-induced B-cell memory destruction offer new insights into mechanisms of vaccine failure, and should lead us towards new strategies to overcome trypanosome defenses operating against the host immune system.

  11. Pentamidine for the treatment of Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia and other protozoal diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearson, R D; Hewlett, E L

    1985-11-01

    Pentamidine isethionate, discovered to have antiprotozoal activity in 1938, has recently been approved in the United States for the treatment of Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia. Despite frequent adverse reactions, which are at times life-threatening, pentamidine remains an important alternative to trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole for the treatment of P. carinii pneumonia in patients with a history of allergy to sulfonamides or who have severe reactions or a lack of response to treatment with trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole. Although not approved for other indications, pentamidine has been shown to be effective when used prophylactically against Trypanosoma brucei gambiense, the cause of West African sleeping sickness, as well as for treatment of the early hemolymphatic stage of that disease, and for treatment of some forms of leishmaniasis.

  12. Genetically distinct Glossina fuscipes fuscipes populations in the Lake Kyoga region of Uganda and its relevance for human African trypanosomiasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Echodu, Richard; Sistrom, Mark; Hyseni, Chaz; Enyaru, John; Okedi, Loyce; Aksoy, Serap; Caccone, Adalgisa

    2013-01-01

    Tsetse flies (Glossina spp.) are the sole vectors of Trypanosoma brucei--the agent of human (HAT) and animal (AAT) trypanosomiasis. Glossina fuscipes fuscipes (Gff) is the main vector species in Uganda--the only country where the two forms of HAT disease (rhodesiense and gambiense) occur, with gambiense limited to the northwest. Gff populations cluster in three genetically distinct groups in northern, southern, and western Uganda, respectively, with a contact zone present in central Uganda. Understanding the dynamics of this contact zone is epidemiologically important as the merger of the two diseases is a major health concern. We used mitochondrial and microsatellite DNA data from Gff samples in the contact zone to understand its spatial extent and temporal stability. We show that this zone is relatively narrow, extending through central Uganda along major rivers with south to north introgression but displaying no sex-biased dispersal. Lack of obvious vicariant barriers suggests that either environmental conditions or reciprocal competitive exclusion could explain the patterns of genetic differentiation observed. Lack of admixture between northern and southern populations may prevent the sympatry of the two forms of HAT disease, although continued control efforts are needed to prevent the recolonization of tsetse-free regions by neighboring populations.

  13. The continuing problem of human African trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kennedy, Peter G E

    2008-08-01

    Human African trypanosomiasis, also known as sleeping sickness, is a neglected disease, and it continues to pose a major threat to 60 million people in 36 countries in sub-Saharan Africa. Transmitted by the bite of the tsetse fly, the disease is caused by protozoan parasites of the genus Trypanosoma and comes in two types: East African human African trypanosomiasis caused by Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense and the West African form caused by Trypanosoma brucei gambiense. There is an early or hemolymphatic stage and a late or encephalitic stage, when the parasites cross the blood-brain barrier to invade the central nervous system. Two critical current issues are disease staging and drug therapy, especially for late-stage disease. Lumbar puncture to analyze cerebrospinal fluid will remain the only method of disease staging until reliable noninvasive methods are developed, but there is no widespread consensus as to what exactly defines biologically central nervous system disease or what specific cerebrospinal fluid findings should justify drug therapy for late-stage involvement. All four main drugs used for human African trypanosomiasis are toxic, and melarsoprol, the only drug that is effective for both types of central nervous system disease, is so toxic that it kills 5% of patients who receive it. Eflornithine, alone or combined with nifurtimox, is being used increasingly as first-line therapy for gambiense disease. There is a pressing need for an effective, safe oral drug for both stages of the disease, but this will require a significant increase in investment for new drug discovery from Western governments and the pharmaceutical industry.

  14. Infections Revealing Complement Deficiency in Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Audemard-Verger, A.; Descloux, E.; Ponard, D.; Deroux, A.; Fantin, B.; Fieschi, C.; John, M.; Bouldouyre, A.; Karkowsi, L.; Moulis, G.; Auvinet, H.; Valla, F.; Lechiche, C.; Davido, B.; Martinot, M.; Biron, C.; Lucht, F.; Asseray, N.; Froissart, A.; Buzelé, R.; Perlat, A.; Boutboul, D.; Fremeaux-Bacchi, V.; Isnard, S.; Bienvenu, B.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Complement system is a part of innate immunity, its main function is to protect human from bacterial infection. As genetic disorders, complement deficiencies are often diagnosed in pediatric population. However, complement deficiencies can also be revealed in adults but have been poorly investigated. Herein, we describe a case series of infections revealing complement deficiency in adults to study clinical spectrum and management of complement deficiencies. A nationwide retrospective study was conducted in French university and general hospitals in departments of internal medicine, infectious diseases enrolling patients older than 15 years old who had presented at least one infection leading to a complement deficiency diagnosis. Forty-one patients included between 2002 and 2015 in 19 different departments were enrolled in this study. The male-to-female ratio was 1.3 and the mean age at diagnosis was 28 ± 14 (15–67) years. The main clinical feature was Neisseria meningitidis meningitis 75% (n = 31/41) often involving rare serotype: Y (n = 9) and W 135 (n = 7). The main complement deficiency observed was the common final pathway deficiency 83% (n = 34/41). Half of the cohort displayed severe sepsis or septic shock at diagnosis (n = 22/41) but no patient died. No patient had family history of complement deficiency. The mean follow-up was 1.15 ± 1.95 (0.1–10) years. Half of the patients had already suffered from at least one infection before diagnosis of complement deficiency: meningitis (n = 13), pneumonia (n = 4), fulminans purpura (n = 1), or recurrent otitis (n = 1). Near one-third (n = 10/39) had received prophylactic antibiotics (cotrimoxazole or penicillin) after diagnosis of complement deficiency. The vaccination coverage rate, at the end of the follow-up, for N meningitidis, Streptococcus pneumonia, and Haemophilius influenzae were, respectively, 90% (n = 33/37), 47% (n = 17/36), and 35

  15. Apocalypto: revealing lost text with XMT

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mills, David; Davis, Graham R.; Lai, Yu-kun; Rosin, Paul

    2014-09-01

    "Can brute-force high-contrast tomography techniques and image processing techniques retrieve textual content from damaged heritage materials?" The Dental Institute at Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) is the leading centre for very high contrast X-Ray Microtomography imaging. The Apocalypto Project is our collaboration with the heritage community and experts in Computer Vision systems in the Computer Science Department at Cardiff University. This collaboration has developed techniques and a workflow that allows us to reveal textual content from moisture-damaged parchment rolls. This article will also present some initial results from burned and heat shrunken parchment rolls, an insect damaged Mamluk cap and a birch bark roll.

  16. Revealing Event Saliency in Unconstrained Video Collection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Dingwen; Han, Junwei; Jiang, Lu; Ye, Senmao; Chang, Xiaojun

    2017-04-01

    Recent progresses in multimedia event detection have enabled us to find videos about a predefined event from a large-scale video collection. Research towards more intrinsic unsupervised video understanding is an interesting but understudied field. Specifically, given a collection of videos sharing a common event of interest, the goal is to discover the salient fragments, i.e., the curt video fragments that can concisely portray the underlying event of interest, from each video. To explore this novel direction, this paper proposes an unsupervised event saliency revealing framework. It first extracts features from multiple modalities to represent each shot in the given video collection. Then, these shots are clustered to build the cluster-level event saliency revealing framework, which explores useful information cues (i.e., the intra-cluster prior, inter-cluster discriminability, and inter-cluster smoothness) by a concise optimization model. Compared with the existing methods, our approach could highlight the intrinsic stimulus of the unseen event within a video in an unsupervised fashion. Thus, it could potentially benefit to a wide range of multimedia tasks like video browsing, understanding, and search. To quantitatively verify the proposed method, we systematically compare the method to a number of baseline methods on the TRECVID benchmarks. Experimental results have demonstrated its effectiveness and efficiency.

  17. Transcriptome classification reveals molecular subtypes in psoriasis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ainali Chrysanthi

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Psoriasis is an immune-mediated disease characterised by chronically elevated pro-inflammatory cytokine levels, leading to aberrant keratinocyte proliferation and differentiation. Although certain clinical phenotypes, such as plaque psoriasis, are well defined, it is currently unclear whether there are molecular subtypes that might impact on prognosis or treatment outcomes. Results We present a pipeline for patient stratification through a comprehensive analysis of gene expression in paired lesional and non-lesional psoriatic tissue samples, compared with controls, to establish differences in RNA expression patterns across all tissue types. Ensembles of decision tree predictors were employed to cluster psoriatic samples on the basis of gene expression patterns and reveal gene expression signatures that best discriminate molecular disease subtypes. This multi-stage procedure was applied to several published psoriasis studies and a comparison of gene expression patterns across datasets was performed. Conclusion Overall, classification of psoriasis gene expression patterns revealed distinct molecular sub-groups within the clinical phenotype of plaque psoriasis. Enrichment for TGFb and ErbB signaling pathways, noted in one of the two psoriasis subgroups, suggested that this group may be more amenable to therapies targeting these pathways. Our study highlights the potential biological relevance of using ensemble decision tree predictors to determine molecular disease subtypes, in what may initially appear to be a homogenous clinical group. The R code used in this paper is available upon request.

  18. Symptomatic hypopituitarism revealing primary suprasellar lymphoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M'rabti Hind

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The most common cause of hypopituitarism is pituitary adenoma. However, in the case of suprasellar masses different etiologies are possible. We report an unusual case of primary suprasellar lymphoma presented with hypopituitarism. Case presentation A 26 year old woman presented with amenorrhea, galactorrhea and neurological disorders. Also, the laboratory work-up revealed partial hypopituitarism. The magnetic resonance imaging of the head showed a suprasellar mass. A presumptive diagnosis of granulomatous processes was made and the patient was given steroid therapy. Repeated brain MRI detected new lesions in the brain with regression of the suprasellar mass. Stereotactic biopsy of the paraventricular lesion revealed the diagnosis of B-cell lymphoma. Conclusion This case presentation reports a rare cause of hypopituitarism. Primary suprasellar lymphoma is extremely rare and represented a real diagnostic challenge. Besides, suprasellar masses are varied in aetiology and can present diagnostic problems for a radiologist. Also, because of the increased incidence of PCNSL, lymphoma must be kept in mind in the differential diagnosis of lesions in the suprasellar region.

  19. Stochastic homothetically revealed preference for tight stochastic demand functions

    OpenAIRE

    Jan Heufer

    2009-01-01

    This paper strengthens the framework of stochastic revealed preferences introduced by Bandyopadhyay et al. (1999, 2004) for stochastic homothetically revealed preferences for tight stochastic demand functions.

  20. Chemotaxis: new role for Ras revealed

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jianshe Yan; Dale Hereld; Tian Jin

    2010-01-01

    @@ A recent study of chemotaxis revealed a new role for the proto-oncogene Ras in the social ameba Dictyostelium discoideum.Chemotaxis,the directional movement of cells toward chemokines and other chemoattractants,plays critical roles in diverse physiological processes,such as mobilization of immune cells to fight invading microorganisms,targeting of metastatic cancer cells to specific tissues,and guidance of sperm cells to ova during fertilization.This work,published in the July 26 issue of The Journal of Cell Biology,was conducted in Dr.Devreotes' lab at John Hopkins University and Dr.Parent's lab at National Cancer Institute.This research team demonstrated that RasC functions as an upstream regulator of TORC2 and thereby governs the effects of TORC2-PKB signaling on the cytoskeleton and cell migration.

  1. Social patterns revealed through random matrix theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarkar, Camellia; Jalan, Sarika

    2014-11-01

    Despite the tremendous advancements in the field of network theory, very few studies have taken weights in the interactions into consideration that emerge naturally in all real-world systems. Using random matrix analysis of a weighted social network, we demonstrate the profound impact of weights in interactions on emerging structural properties. The analysis reveals that randomness existing in particular time frame affects the decisions of individuals rendering them more freedom of choice in situations of financial security. While the structural organization of networks remains the same throughout all datasets, random matrix theory provides insight into the interaction pattern of individuals of the society in situations of crisis. It has also been contemplated that individual accountability in terms of weighted interactions remains as a key to success unless segregation of tasks comes into play.

  2. Double peaks reveal rare diplomonad sex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersson, Jan O

    2012-02-01

    Diplomonads, single-celled eukaryotes, are unusual in having two nuclei. Each nucleus contains two copies of the genome and is transcriptionally active. It has long been assumed that diplomonads in general and Giardia intestinalis in particular are asexual. Genomic and population genetic data now challenge that assumption and extensive allelic sequence heterogeneity has been reported in some but not all examined diplomonad lineages. Here it is argued, in contrast to common assumptions, that allelic differences indicate recent sexual events, and isolates that have divided asexually for many generations have lost their allelic variation owing to within-cell recombination. Consequently, directed studies of the allelic sequence heterogeneity in diverse diplomonad lineages are likely to reveal details about the enigmatic diplomonad sexual life cycle.

  3. Neutron Imaging Reveals Internal Plant Hydraulic Dynamics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Warren, Jeffrey [ORNL; Bilheux, Hassina Z [ORNL; Kang, Misun [ORNL; Voisin, Sophie [ORNL; Cheng, Chu-Lin [ORNL; Horita, Jusuke [ORNL; Perfect, Edmund [ORNL

    2013-01-01

    Many terrestrial ecosystem processes are constrained by water availability and transport within the soil. Knowledge of plant water fluxes is thus critical for assessing mechanistic processes linked to biogeochemical cycles, yet resolution of root structure and xylem water transport dynamics has been a particularly daunting task for the ecologist. Through neutron imaging, we demonstrate the ability to non-invasively monitor individual root functionality and water fluxes within Zea mays L. (maize) and Panicum virgatum L. (switchgrass) seedlings growing in a sandy medium. Root structure and growth were readily imaged by neutron radiography and neutron computed tomography. Seedlings were irrigated with water or deuterium oxide and imaged through time as a growth lamp was cycled on to alter leaf demand for water. Sub-millimeter scale resolution reveals timing and magnitudes of root water uptake, redistribution within the roots, and root-shoot hydraulic linkages, relationships not well characterized by other techniques.

  4. [Pneumothorax revealed by postoperative computed tomography].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ikeda, Shizuka; Katori, Kiyoshi; Fujimoto, Minoru; Nitahara, Keiichi; Higa, Kazuo

    2005-11-01

    We report a case of pneumothorax revealed by postoperative computed tomography. A 39-year-old obese woman (height 153 cm, weight 70 kg) with fractures of the radius, ulna, clavicle, and femur in a traffic accident, was scheduled for osteosynthesis. Anesthesia was induced with thiopental and maintained with 50% nitrous oxide in oxygen and sevoflurane. The Spo2 decreased from 99% to 94% during the surgery. Bilateral chest sounds were symmetrical. The Spo2 increased to 100% after discontinuation of nitrous oxide. Pneumothorax was not evident on a postoperative chest X-ray, but computed tomography of the chest demonstrated right-sided pneumothorax. An ECG electrode had overlapped the fractured rib on the preoperative chest X-ray.

  5. Reward reveals dissociable aspects of sustained attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esterman, Michael; Reagan, Andrew; Liu, Guanyu; Turner, Caroline; DeGutis, Joseph

    2014-12-01

    Although reward is known to have a powerful influence on performance, its effects on the ability to continuously sustain performance over time are poorly understood. The current study examines multiple measures of sustained attention (accuracy and variability) and their decrements over time, while introducing reward in the form of a monetary incentive or the promise of early completion. Compared with unrewarded participants, rewarded participants demonstrated greater overall accuracy and lower reaction time variability. However, rewarded and unrewarded participants displayed nearly identical decrements in performance over time, suggesting that these aspects of sustained attention are far less malleable by enhanced effort. This study helps to resolve conflicting models of sustained attention as it reveals that some aspects of performance are due to motivational lapses whereas others are due to the depletion of cognitive resources that cannot be easily overcome.

  6. Can Clustering in Genotype Space Reveal "Niches"?

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Andrea, Rafael; Ostling, Annette

    2016-01-01

    Community ecology lacks the success enjoyed by population genetics to quantify the relative roles played by deterministic and stochastic processes. It has been proposed that clustered patterns of abundance in genotype space provide evidence of selection in microbial communities, since no such clustering would arise in the absence of selection. We critique this test for its unrealistic null hypothesis. We show mathematically and with simulations that point mutations alone lead to clustering in genotype space by causing correlations between abundances of similar genotypes. We also show potential deviations from the mutation-only pattern caused by immigration from a source pool. Clustered patterns in genotype space may still be revealing of selection if analyzed quantitatively but only if neutral and selective regimes can be distinguished once mutation and immigration are included in the null model.

  7. Revealing effective classifiers through network comparison

    CERN Document Server

    Gallos, Lazaros K

    2014-01-01

    The ability to compare complex systems can provide new insight into the fundamental nature of the processes captured in ways that are otherwise inaccessible to observation. Here, we introduce the $n$-tangle method to directly compare two networks for structural similarity, based on the distribution of edge density in network subgraphs. We demonstrate that this method can efficiently introduce comparative analysis into network science and opens the road for many new applications. For example, we show how the construction of a phylogenetic tree across animal taxa according to their social structure can reveal commonalities in the behavioral ecology of the populations, or how students create similar networks according to the University size. Our method can be expanded to study a multitude of additional properties, such as network classification, changes during time evolution, convergence of growth models, and detection of structural changes during damage.

  8. Revealed Quantum Information in Weak Interaction Processes

    CERN Document Server

    Hiesmayr, B C

    2014-01-01

    We analyze the achievable limits of the quantum information processing of the weak interaction revealed by hyperons with spin. We find that the weak decay process corresponds to an interferometric device with a fixed visibility and fixed phase difference for each hyperon. Nature chooses rather low visibilities expressing a preference to parity conserving or violating processes (except for the decay $\\Sigma^+\\longrightarrow p \\pi^0$). The decay process can be considered as an open quantum channel that carries the information of the hyperon spin to the angular distribution of the momentum of the daughter particles. We find a simple geometrical information theoretic interpretation of this process: two quantization axes are chosen spontaneously with probabilities $\\frac{1\\pm\\alpha}{2}$ where $\\alpha$ is proportional to the visibility times the real part of the phase shift. Differently stated the weak interaction process corresponds to spin measurements with an imperfect Stern-Gerlach apparatus. Equipped with this...

  9. Licking microstructure reveals rapid attenuation of neophobia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monk, Kevin J; Rubin, Benjamin D; Keene, Jennifer C; Katz, Donald B

    2014-03-01

    Many animals hesitate when initially consuming a novel food and increase their consumption of that food between the first and second sessions of access-a process termed attenuation of neophobia (AN). AN has received attention as a model of learning and memory; it has been suggested that plasticity resulting from an association of the novel tastant with "safe outcome" results in a change in the neural response to the tastant during the second session, such that consumption increases. Most studies have reported that AN emerges only an hour or more after the end of the first exposure to the tastant, consistent with what is known of learning-related plasticity. But these studies have typically measured consumption, rather than real-time behavior, and thus the possibility exists that a more rapidly developing AN remains to be discovered. Here, we tested this possibility, examining both consumption and individual lick times in a novel variant of a brief-access task (BAT). When quantified in terms of consumption, data from the BAT accorded well with the results of a classic one-bottle task-both revealed neophobia/AN specific to higher concentrations (for instance, 28mM) of saccharin. An analysis of licking microstructure, however, additionally revealed a real-time correlate of neophobia-an explicit tendency, similarly specific for 28-mM saccharin, to cut short the initial bout of licks in a single trial (compared with water). This relative hesitancy (i.e., the shortness of the first lick bout to 28-mM saccharin compared with water) that constitutes neophobia not only disappeared between sessions but also gradually declined in magnitude across session 1. These data demonstrate that the BAT accurately measures AN, and that aspects of AN-and the processes underlying familiarization-begin within minutes of the very first taste.

  10. Two pathways of homologous recombination in Trypanosoma brucei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conway, Colin; Proudfoot, Chris; Burton, Peter; Barry, J David; McCulloch, Richard

    2002-09-01

    African trypanosomes are unicellular parasites that use DNA recombination to evade the mammalian immune response. They do this in a process called antigenic variation, in which the parasites periodically switch the expression of VSG genes that encode distinct Variant Surface Glycoprotein coats. Recombination is used to move new VSG genes into specialised bloodstream VSG transcription sites. Genetic and molecular evidence has suggested that antigenic variation uses homologous recombination, but the detailed reaction pathways are not understood. In this study, we examine the recombination pathways used by trypanosomes to integrate transformed DNA into their genome, and show that they possess at least two pathways of homologous recombination. The primary mechanism is dependent upon RAD51, but a subsidiary pathway exists that is RAD51-independent. Both pathways contribute to antigenic variation. We show that the RAD51-independent pathway is capable of recombining DNA substrates with very short lengths of sequence homology and in some cases aberrant recombination reactions can be detected using such microhomologies.

  11. Revealing the values behind convenience food consumption.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Botonaki, Anna; Mattas, Konstadinos

    2010-12-01

    The increasing importance of convenience in consumer food choices has attracted researchers' interest. In the effort to understand how convenience affects consumers' food preferences, values are believed to play an important role. The present study attempts to examine the way personal values suggested by Schwartz (1992) are associated with behaviour and attitudes regarding convenience food. A number of constructs describing food related attitudes and behaviours were developed and their relationship with personal values was analyzed following the methodology proposed by Brunsø, Scholderer, and Grunert (2004). Data were collected through a questionnaire survey from a random sample of consumers in Thessaloniki city, Greece. The results reveal that convenience food consumption and convenience orientation in the food domain are mainly connected with values that motivate people to seek new experiences, act independently and enhance their own personal interests, while are in conflict with values of conservation and self-transcendence. The opposite holds for other food related attitudes and behaviours like involvement with cooking and variety in diet. The findings seem to be of particular interest not only for marketers of food products, but also for food policy makers.

  12. VISTA Reveals the Secret of the Unicorn

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    A new infrared image from ESO's VISTA survey telescope reveals an extraordinary landscape of glowing tendrils of gas, dark clouds and young stars within the constellation of Monoceros (the Unicorn). This star-forming region, known as Monoceros R2, is embedded within a huge dark cloud. The region is almost completely obscured by interstellar dust when viewed in visible light, but is spectacular in the infrared. An active stellar nursery lies hidden inside a massive dark cloud rich in molecules and dust in the constellation of Monoceros. Although it appears close in the sky to the more familiar Orion Nebula it is actually almost twice as far from Earth, at a distance of about 2700 light-years. In visible light a grouping of massive hot stars creates a beautiful collection of reflection nebulae where the bluish starlight is scattered from parts of the dark, foggy outer layers of the molecular cloud. However, most of the new-born massive stars remain hidden as the thick interstellar dust strongly absorbs their ultraviolet and visible light. In this gorgeous infrared image taken from ESO's Paranal Observatory in northern Chile, the Visible and Infrared Survey Telescope for Astronomy (VISTA [1], eso0949) penetrates the dark curtain of cosmic dust and reveals in astonishing detail the folds, loops and filaments sculpted from the dusty interstellar matter by intense particle winds and the radiation emitted by hot young stars. "When I first saw this image I just said 'Wow!' I was amazed to see all the dust streamers so clearly around the Monoceros R2 cluster, as well as the jets from highly embedded young stellar objects. There is such a great wealth of exciting detail revealed in these VISTA images," says Jim Emerson, of Queen Mary, University of London and leader of the VISTA consortium. With its huge field of view, large mirror and sensitive camera, VISTA is ideal for obtaining deep, high quality infrared images of large areas of the sky, such as the Monoceros R2 region

  13. Balance Trees Reveal Microbial Niche Differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morton, James T; Sanders, Jon; Quinn, Robert A; McDonald, Daniel; Gonzalez, Antonio; Vázquez-Baeza, Yoshiki; Navas-Molina, Jose A; Song, Se Jin; Metcalf, Jessica L; Hyde, Embriette R; Lladser, Manuel; Dorrestein, Pieter C; Knight, Rob

    2017-01-01

    Advances in sequencing technologies have enabled novel insights into microbial niche differentiation, from analyzing environmental samples to understanding human diseases and informing dietary studies. However, identifying the microbial taxa that differentiate these samples can be challenging. These issues stem from the compositional nature of 16S rRNA gene data (or, more generally, taxon or functional gene data); the changes in the relative abundance of one taxon influence the apparent abundances of the others. Here we acknowledge that inferring properties of individual bacteria is a difficult problem and instead introduce the concept of balances to infer meaningful properties of subcommunities, rather than properties of individual species. We show that balances can yield insights about niche differentiation across multiple microbial environments, including soil environments and lung sputum. These techniques have the potential to reshape how we carry out future ecological analyses aimed at revealing differences in relative taxonomic abundances across different samples. IMPORTANCE By explicitly accounting for the compositional nature of 16S rRNA gene data through the concept of balances, balance trees yield novel biological insights into niche differentiation. The software to perform this analysis is available under an open-source license and can be obtained at https://github.com/biocore/gneiss. Author Video: An author video summary of this article is available.

  14. Myasthenia Revealed Following Laparotomy - A Case Report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdelilah GHANNAM

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Myasthenia (muscle weakness is a rare neuromuscular disease of which respiratory failure is the main complication. The accidental discovery of such disease in the perioperative period is rare and potentially serious.We report a case of a woman who underwent emergency operation for appendiceal peritonitis, and failed repeatedly at weaning from postoperative mechanical ventilation. The usual etiologies such as postoperative respiratory complications, ventilator-associated pneumonia, acute respiratory distress syndrome complicating the septic shock or having no impact on it, and neuromyopathy’s resuscitation were considered, researched, examined or eliminated.Faced with the diagnostic impasse and the obvious weaning failure, another interview revealed signs of muscle fatigue which led to the diagnosis of myasthenia gravis decompensated perioperatively. Once the diagnosis was confirmed by means of a neostigmine test, the specific treatment began, particularly through plasma exchange sessions, and the process of weaning resumed. The result was complete weaning. A three-month follow-up showed a stable patient with no significant muscular disability.

  15. ERYTHEMA NODOSUM REVEALING ACUTE MYELOID LEUKEMIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chebbi Wafa

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Erythema nodosum (EN is the most common type of panniculitis. It may be idiopathic or secondary to various etiologies. However, the occurrence of erythema nodosum in malignant hemopathy had rarely been reported. Case report: A 42 year-old woman presented with a four week history of recurrent multiple painful erythematous nodules developed on the lower limbs associated with arthralgia of the ankles and fever. The clinical features of skin lesions with contusiform color evolution allowed establishing the diagnosis of EN. No underlying cause was found. The skin lesions were improved with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and colchicine. Three months later, the patient consulted for recurrence of EN associated with fever, inflammatory polyarthralgia and hepatosplenomegaly. The peripheral blood count revealed pancytopenia. A bone marrow examination confirmed the diagnosis of acute myeloid leukemia type 2. Initiation of chemotherapy was followed by the complete disappearance of skin lesions of EN. Conclusion: Paraneoplastic erythema nodosum is a rare entity. In the literature, a few cases of association with leukemia have been reported. Exploration for solid neoplasms or hemopathy in case of recurrent EN or resistance to conventional treatment should be systematic

  16. Balance Trees Reveal Microbial Niche Differentiation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morton, James T.; Sanders, Jon; Quinn, Robert A.; McDonald, Daniel; Gonzalez, Antonio; Vázquez-Baeza, Yoshiki; Navas-Molina, Jose A.; Metcalf, Jessica L.; Hyde, Embriette R.; Lladser, Manuel; Dorrestein, Pieter C.

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Advances in sequencing technologies have enabled novel insights into microbial niche differentiation, from analyzing environmental samples to understanding human diseases and informing dietary studies. However, identifying the microbial taxa that differentiate these samples can be challenging. These issues stem from the compositional nature of 16S rRNA gene data (or, more generally, taxon or functional gene data); the changes in the relative abundance of one taxon influence the apparent abundances of the others. Here we acknowledge that inferring properties of individual bacteria is a difficult problem and instead introduce the concept of balances to infer meaningful properties of subcommunities, rather than properties of individual species. We show that balances can yield insights about niche differentiation across multiple microbial environments, including soil environments and lung sputum. These techniques have the potential to reshape how we carry out future ecological analyses aimed at revealing differences in relative taxonomic abundances across different samples. IMPORTANCE By explicitly accounting for the compositional nature of 16S rRNA gene data through the concept of balances, balance trees yield novel biological insights into niche differentiation. The software to perform this analysis is available under an open-source license and can be obtained at https://github.com/biocore/gneiss. Author Video: An author video summary of this article is available. PMID:28144630

  17. Quadrupole transitions revealed by Borrmann spectroscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pettifer, Robert F; Collins, Stephen P; Laundy, David

    2008-07-10

    The Borrmann effect-a dramatic increase in transparency to X-ray beams-is observed when X-rays satisfying Bragg's law diffract through a perfect crystal. The minimization of absorption seen in the Borrmann effect has been explained by noting that the electric field of the X-ray beam approaches zero amplitude at the crystal planes, thus avoiding the atoms. Here we show experimentally that under conditions of absorption suppression, the weaker electric quadrupole absorption transitions are effectively enhanced to such a degree that they can dominate the absorption spectrum. This effect can be exploited as an atomic spectroscopy technique; we show that quadrupole transitions give rise to additional structure at the L(1), L(2) and L(3) absorption edges of gadolinium in gadolinium gallium garnet, which mark the onset of excitations from 2s, 2p(1/2) and 2p(3/2) atomic core levels, respectively. Although the Borrmann effect served to underpin the development of the theory of X-ray diffraction, this is potentially the most important experimental application of the phenomenon since its first observation seven decades ago. Identifying quadrupole features in X-ray absorption spectroscopy is central to the interpretation of 'pre-edge' spectra, which are often taken to be indicators of local symmetry, valence and atomic environment. Quadrupolar absorption isolates states of different symmetries to that of the dominant dipole spectrum, and typically reveals orbitals that dominate the electronic ground-state properties of lanthanides and 3d transition metals, including magnetism. Results from our Borrmann spectroscopy technique feed into contemporary discussions regarding resonant X-ray diffraction and the nature of pre-edge lines identified by inelastic X-ray scattering. Furthermore, because the Borrmann effect has been observed in photonic materials, it seems likely that the quadrupole enhancement reported here will play an important role in modern optics.

  18. Quantitative proteomics reveals cellular targets of celastrol.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jakob Hansen

    Full Text Available Celastrol, a natural substance isolated from plant extracts used in traditional Chinese medicine, has been extensively investigated as a possible drug for treatment of cancer, autoimmune diseases, and protein misfolding disorders. Although studies focusing on celastrol's effects in specific cellular pathways have revealed a considerable number of targets in a diverse array of in vitro models there is an essential need for investigations that can provide a global view of its effects. To assess cellular effects of celastrol and to identify target proteins as biomarkers for monitoring treatment regimes, we performed large-scale quantitative proteomics in cultured human lymphoblastoid cells, a cell type that can be readily prepared from human blood samples. Celastrol substantially modified the proteome composition and 158 of the close to 1800 proteins with robust quantitation showed at least a 1.5 fold change in protein levels. Up-regulated proteins play key roles in cytoprotection with a prominent group involved in quality control and processing of proteins traversing the endoplasmic reticulum. Increased levels of proteins essential for the cellular protection against oxidative stress including heme oxygenase 1, several peroxiredoxins and thioredoxins as well as proteins involved in the control of iron homeostasis were also observed. Specific analysis of the mitochondrial proteome strongly indicated that the mitochondrial association of certain antioxidant defense and apoptosis-regulating proteins increased in cells exposed to celastrol. Analysis of selected mRNA transcripts showed that celastrol activated several different stress response pathways and dose response studies furthermore showed that continuous exposure to sub-micromolar concentrations of celastrol is associated with reduced cellular viability and proliferation. The extensive catalog of regulated proteins presented here identifies numerous cellular effects of celastrol and constitutes

  19. Revealing atropisomer axial chirality in drug discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    LaPlante, Steven R; Edwards, Paul J; Fader, Lee D; Jakalian, Araz; Hucke, Oliver

    2011-03-07

    An often overlooked source of chirality is atropisomerism, which results from slow rotation along a bond axis due to steric hindrance and/or electronic factors. If undetected or not managed properly, this time-dependent chirality has the potential to lead to serious consequences, because atropisomers can be present as distinct enantiomers or diastereoisomers with their attendant different properties. Herein we introduce a strategy to reveal and classify compounds that have atropisomeric chirality. Energy barriers to axial rotation were calculated using quantum mechanics, from which predicted high barriers could be experimentally validated. A calculated rotational energy barrier of 20 kcal mol(-1) was established as a suitable threshold to distinguish between atropisomers and non-atropisomers with a prediction accuracy of 86%. This methodology was applied to subsets of drug databases in the course of which atropisomeric drugs were identified. In addition, some drugs were exposed that were not yet known to have this chiral attribute. The most valuable utility of this tool will be to predict atropisomerism along the drug discovery pathway. When used in concert with our compound classification scheme, decisions can be made during early discovery stages such as "hit-to-lead" and "lead optimization," to foresee and validate the presence of atropisomers and to exercise options of removing, further stabilizing, or rendering the chiral axis of interest more freely rotatable via SAR design, thereby decreasing this potential liability within a compound series. The strategy can also improve drug development plans, such as determining whether a drug or series should be developed as a racemic mixture or as an isolated single compound. Moreover, the work described herein can be extended to other chemical fields that require the assessment of potential chiral axes.

  20. Frantic activity revealed in dusty stellar factories

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-01-01

    Thanks to the Very Large Telescope's acute and powerful near-infrared eye, astronomers have uncovered a host of new young, massive and dusty stellar nurseries in nearby galaxy NGC 253. The centre of this galaxy appears to harbour a twin of our own Milky Way's supermassive black hole. ESO PR Photo 02a/09 The Spiral Galaxy NGC 253 Astronomers from the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain) used NACO, a sharp-eyed adaptive optics instrument on ESO's Very Large Telescope (VLT), to study the fine detail in NGC 253, one of the brightest and dustiest spiral galaxies in the sky. Adaptive Optics (AO) corrects for the blurring effect introduced by the Earth's atmosphere. This turbulence causes the stars to twinkle in a way that delights poets, but frustrates astronomers, since it smears out the images. With AO in action the telescope can produce images that are as sharp as is theoretically possible, as if the telescope were in space. NACO revealed features in the galaxy that were only 11 light-years across. "Our observations provide us with so much spatially resolved detail that we can, for the first time, compare them with the finest radio maps for this galaxy -- maps that have existed for more than a decade," says Juan Antonio Fernández-Ontiveros, the lead author of the paper reporting the results [1]. Astronomers identified 37 distinct bright regions, a threefold increase on previous results, packed into a tiny region at the core of the galaxy, comprising just one percent of the galaxy's total size. The astronomers combined their NACO images with data from another VLT instrument, VISIR, as well as with images from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope and radio observations made by the Very Large Array and the Very Large Baseline Interferometer. Combining these observations, taken in different wavelength regimes, provided a clue to the nature of these regions. "We now think that these are probably very active nurseries that contain many stars bursting from their

  1. Microradiometers Reveal Ocean Health, Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    When NASA researcher Stanford Hooker is in the field, he pays close attention to color. For Hooker, being in the field means being at sea. On one such research trip to the frigid waters of the Arctic, with a Coast Guard icebreaker looming nearby and the snow-crusted ice shelf a few feet away, Hooker leaned over the edge of his small boat and lowered a tethered device into the bright turquoise water, a new product devised by a NASA partner and enabled by a promising technology for oceanographers and atmospheric scientists alike. Color is a function of light. Pure water is clear, but the variation in color observed during a visit to the beach or a flight along a coastline depends on the water s depth and the constituents in it, how far down the light penetrates and how it is absorbed and scattered by dissolved and suspended material. Hooker cares about ocean color because of what it can reveal about the health of the ocean, and in turn, the health of our planet. "The main thing we are interested in is the productivity of the water," Hooker says. The seawater contains phytoplankton, microscopic plants, which are the food base for the ocean s ecosystems. Changes in the water s properties, whether due to natural seasonal effects or human influence, can lead to problems for delicate ecosystems such as coral reefs. Ocean color can inform researchers about the quantities and distribution of phytoplankton and other materials, providing clues as to how the world ocean is changing. NASA s Coastal Zone Color Scanner, launched in 1978, was the first ocean color instrument flown on a spacecraft. Since then, the Agency s ocean color research capabilities have become increasingly sophisticated with the launch of the SeaWiFS instrument in 1997 and the twin MODIS instruments carried into orbit on NASA s Terra (1999) and Aqua (2002) satellites. The technology provides sweeping, global information on ocean color on a scale unattainable by any other means. One issue that arises from

  2. The Trypanosome Exocyst: A Conserved Structure Revealing a New Role in Endocytosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boehm, Cordula M.; Obado, Samson; Gadelha, Catarina; Kaupisch, Alexandra; Manna, Paul T.; Gould, Gwyn W.; Rout, Michael P.; Field, Mark C.

    2017-01-01

    Membrane transport is an essential component of pathogenesis for most infectious organisms. In African trypanosomes, transport to and from the plasma membrane is closely coupled to immune evasion and antigenic variation. In mammals and fungi an octameric exocyst complex mediates late steps in exocytosis, but comparative genomics suggested that trypanosomes retain only six canonical subunits, implying mechanistic divergence. We directly determined the composition of the Trypanosoma brucei exocyst by affinity isolation and demonstrate that the parasite complex is nonameric, retaining all eight canonical subunits (albeit highly divergent at the sequence level) plus a novel essential subunit, Exo99. Exo99 and Sec15 knockdowns have remarkably similar phenotypes in terms of viability and impact on morphology and trafficking pathways. Significantly, both Sec15 and Exo99 have a clear function in endocytosis, and global proteomic analysis indicates an important role in maintaining the surface proteome. Taken together these data indicate additional exocyst functions in trypanosomes, which likely include endocytosis, recycling and control of surface composition. Knockdowns in HeLa cells suggest that the role in endocytosis is shared with metazoan cells. We conclude that, whilst the trypanosome exocyst has novel components, overall functionality appears conserved, and suggest that the unique subunit may provide therapeutic opportunities. PMID:28114397

  3. Escaping Deleterious Immune Response in Their Hosts: Lessons from Trypanosomatids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geiger, Anne; Bossard, Géraldine; Sereno, Denis; Pissarra, Joana; Lemesre, Jean-Loup; Vincendeau, Philippe; Holzmuller, Philippe

    2016-01-01

    The Trypanosomatidae family includes the genera Trypanosoma and Leishmania, protozoan parasites displaying complex digenetic life cycles requiring a vertebrate host and an insect vector. Trypanosoma brucei gambiense, Trypanosoma cruzi, and Leishmania spp. are important human pathogens causing human African trypanosomiasis (HAT or sleeping sickness), Chagas’ disease, and various clinical forms of Leishmaniasis, respectively. They are transmitted to humans by tsetse flies, triatomine bugs, or sandflies, and affect millions of people worldwide. In humans, extracellular African trypanosomes (T. brucei) evade the hosts’ immune defenses, allowing their transmission to the next host, via the tsetse vector. By contrast, T. cruzi and Leishmania sp. have developed a complex intracellular lifestyle, also preventing several mechanisms to circumvent the host’s immune response. This review seeks to set out the immune evasion strategies developed by the different trypanosomatids resulting from parasite–host interactions and will focus on: clinical and epidemiological importance of diseases; life cycles: parasites–hosts–vectors; innate immunity: key steps for trypanosomatids in invading hosts; deregulation of antigen-presenting cells; disruption of efficient specific immunity; and the immune responses used for parasite proliferation. PMID:27303406

  4. 21 CFR 1.21 - Failure to reveal material facts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 1 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Failure to reveal material facts. 1.21 Section 1... GENERAL ENFORCEMENT REGULATIONS General Labeling Requirements § 1.21 Failure to reveal material facts. (a) Labeling of a food, drug, device, or cosmetic shall be deemed to be misleading if it fails to reveal...

  5. Preclinical assessment of the treatment of second-stage African trypanosomiasis with cordycepin and deoxycoformycin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suman K Vodnala

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: There is an urgent need to substitute the highly toxic compounds still in use for treatment of the encephalitic stage of human African trypanosomiasis (HAT. We here assessed the treatment with the doublet cordycepin and the deaminase inhibitor deoxycoformycin for this stage of infection with Trypanosoma brucei (T.b.. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Cordycepin was selected as the most efficient drug from a direct parasite viability screening of a compound library of nucleoside analogues. The minimal number of doses and concentrations of the drugs effective for treatment of T.b. brucei infections in mice were determined. Oral, intraperitoneal or subcutaneous administrations of the compounds were successful for treatment. The doublet was effective for treatment of late stage experimental infections with human pathogenic T.b. rhodesiense and T.b. gambiense isolates. Late stage infection treatment diminished the levels of inflammatory cytokines in brains of infected mice. Incubation with cordycepin resulted in programmed cell death followed by secondary necrosis of the parasites. T.b. brucei strains developed resistance to cordycepin after culture with increasing concentrations of the compound. However, cordycepin-resistant parasites showed diminished virulence and were not cross-resistant to other drugs used for treatment of HAT, i.e. pentamidine, suramin and melarsoprol. Although resistant parasites were mutated in the gene coding for P2 nucleoside adenosine transporter, P2 knockout trypanosomes showed no altered resistance to cordycepin, indicating that absence of the P2 transporter is not sufficient to render the trypanosomes resistant to the drug. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Altogether, our data strongly support testing of treatment with a combination of cordycepin and deoxycoformycin as an alternative for treatment of second-stage and/or melarsoprol-resistant HAT.

  6. Genome-Wide Scan Reveals Mutation Associated with Melanoma

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... historical) Genome-Wide Scan Reveals Mutation Associated with Melanoma A team of international researchers supported by the ... when they divide and grow uncontrollably, develop into melanoma. Also, MITF activity is known to be amplified ...

  7. ON THE AXIOMS OF REVEALED PREFERENCE IN FUZZY CONSUMER THEORY

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Irina GEORGESCU

    2004-01-01

    The revealed preference is a central subject in classical consumer theory. Authors like Samuelson, Arrow, Richter, Sen, Uzawa and others have proposed an axiomatic setting of revealed preference theory. Consequently revealed preference axioms WARP and SARP and congruence axioms WCA and SCA have been considered. An important theorem of Sen establishes the equivalence between these axioms provided thefamily of budgets includes all non-empty finite sets of bundles. Fuzzy consumer theory (=fuzzy choice functions) is a topic that appears in a lot of papers.Particularly, Banerjee studies in fuzzy context axioms of revealed preference and congruence extending some results of Arrow and Sen. In this paper we modify the Banerjee definition of a fuzzy choice function (=fuzzy consumer)and we study some fuzzy versions of the axioms of revealed preference and congruence. Banerjee fuzzifies only the range of a consumer; we use a fuzzification of both the domain and the range of a consumer. The axioms WAFRP, SAFRP, WFCA, SFCA generalize to fuzzy consumer theory the well-known axioms WARP, SARP, WCA, SCA. Our main result establishes some connections between WAFRP, SAFRP, WFCA, SFCA extending a significant part of Sen theorem. Generally, we work in a fuzzy set theory based on a continuous t-norm, but some results are obtained for Godel t-norm and others are obtained for Lukasiewicz t-norm.

  8. More on Measuring the Overall Revealed Comparative Advantage

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Veselin Hadzhiev

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The overall revealed comparative advantages approach aims to summarize the divergent expression of comparative advantages by commodity groups and countries. It represents an alternative to the traditional approach of Bella Balassa, Thomas Vollrath and others. The innovativeness of the overall revealed comparative advantages approach preconditions a certain prudence with regard to its use and interpretation. It is necessary to explore the potential of the approach in different conditions and different circumstances. It was found that the approach of overall revealed comparative advantages is resistant to the Euclidean distances and commodity classifications used for metrification. It has the potential to synthesize uniformly divergent changes in specialization by country and commodity groups and is a useful tool for the analysis of comparative advantages.

  9. Revealing physical interaction networks from statistics of collective dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nitzan, Mor; Casadiego, Jose; Timme, Marc

    2017-01-01

    Revealing physical interactions in complex systems from observed collective dynamics constitutes a fundamental inverse problem in science. Current reconstruction methods require access to a system’s model or dynamical data at a level of detail often not available. We exploit changes in invariant measures, in particular distributions of sampled states of the system in response to driving signals, and use compressed sensing to reveal physical interaction networks. Dynamical observations following driving suffice to infer physical connectivity even if they are temporally disordered, are acquired at large sampling intervals, and stem from different experiments. Testing various nonlinear dynamic processes emerging on artificial and real network topologies indicates high reconstruction quality for existence as well as type of interactions. These results advance our ability to reveal physical interaction networks in complex synthetic and natural systems. PMID:28246630

  10. ID-check: Online concealed information test reveals true identity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verschuere, B.; Kleinberg, B.

    2016-01-01

    The Internet has already changed people's lives considerably and is likely to drastically change forensic research. We developed a web-based test to reveal concealed autobiographical information. Initial studies identified a number of conditions that affect diagnostic efficiency. By combining these

  11. Thrombotic Microangiopathy Revealing Bone Metastases from an Ethmoid Sinus Carcinoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mony Chenda Morisse

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Cancer-related thrombotic microangiopathy (TMA is a rare entity whose clinical and biological characteristics have been described in various tumors. Here we describe the first case of cancer-related TMA revealing diffuse bone metastases from an ethmoid sinus carcinoma.

  12. UTV Expansion Pack: Special-Purpose Rank-Revealing Algorithms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fierro, Ricardo D.; Hansen, Per Christian

    2005-01-01

    This collection of Matlab 7.0 software supplements and complements the package UTV Tools from 1999, and includes implementations of special-purpose rank-revealing algorithms developed since the publication of the original package. We provide algorithms for computing and modifying symmetric rank-r...

  13. Revealing Hanny's Voorwerp : radio observations of IC 2497

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jozsa, G. I. G.; Garrett, M. A.; Oosterloo, T. A.; Rampadarath, H.; Paragi, Z.; van Arkel, H.; Lintott, C.; Keel, W. C.; Schawinski, K.; Edmondson, E.

    2009-01-01

    We present multi-wavelength radio observations in the direction of the spiral galaxy IC 2497 and the neighbouring emission nebula known as "Hanny's Voorwerp". Our WSRT continuum observations at 1.4 GHz and 4.9 GHz reveal the presence of extended emission at the position of the nebulosity, although t

  14. On galaxy spiral arms' nature as revealed by rotation frequencies

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roca-Fabrega, Santi; Valenzuela, Octavio; Figueras, Francesca; Romero-Gomez, Merce; Velazquez, Hector; Antoja Castelltort, Teresa; Pichardo, Barbara

    2013-01-01

    High-resolution N-body simulations using different codes and initial condition techniques reveal two different behaviours for the rotation frequency of transient spiral arms like structures. Whereas unbarred discs present spiral arms nearly corotating with disc particles, strong barred models (bulge

  15. Chemical milling solution reveals stress corrosion cracks in titanium alloy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braski, D. N.

    1967-01-01

    Solution of hydrogen flouride, hydrogen peroxide, and water reveals hot salt stress corrosion cracks in various titanium alloys. After the surface is rinsed in water, dried, and swabbed with the solution, it can be observed by the naked eye or at low magnification.

  16. Integrated genomics of Mucorales reveals novel therapeutic targets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mucormycosis is a life-threatening infection caused by Mucorales fungi. We sequenced 30 fungal genomes and performed transcriptomics with three representative Rhizopus and Mucor strains with human airway epithelial cells during fungal invasion to reveal key host and fungal determinants contributing ...

  17. Natural Disasters that Reveal Cracks in Our Social Foundation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langer, Nieli

    2004-01-01

    The recent deaths of more than 13,000 French elderly in the European heat wave of 2003 revealed cracks in the social foundation of urban communities, here and abroad. The breakdown occurred in community services, neighborhood networks, and governmental agencies that were responsible for warning of impending dangers to at-risk elderly. This paper…

  18. Mitochondrial specialization revealed by single muscle fiber proteomics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schiaffino, S; Reggiani, C; Kostrominova, T Y

    2015-01-01

    We have developed a highly sensitive mass spectrometry-based proteomic workflow to examine the proteome of single muscle fibers. This study revealed significant differences in the mitochondrial proteome of the four major fiber types present in mouse skeletal muscle. Here, we focus on Krebs cycle ...... scavenging capacity to cope with the higher levels of reactive oxygen species production....

  19. Identification of sVSG117 as an immunodiagnostic antigen and evaluation of a dual-antigen lateral flow test for the diagnosis of human African trypanosomiasis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lauren Sullivan

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The diagnosis of human African trypanosomiasis (HAT caused by Trypanosoma brucei gambiense relies mainly on the Card Agglutination Test for Trypanosomiasis (CATT. There is no immunodiagnostic for HAT caused by T. b. rhodesiense. Our principle aim was to develop a prototype lateral flow test that might be an improvement on CATT.Pools of infection and control sera were screened against four different soluble form variant surface glycoproteins (sVSGs by ELISA and one, sVSG117, showed particularly strong immunoreactivity to pooled infection sera. Using individual sera, sVSG117 was shown to be able to discriminate between T. b. gambiense infection and control sera by both ELISA and lateral flow test. The sVSG117 antigen was subsequently used with a previously described recombinant diagnostic antigen, rISG65, to create a dual-antigen lateral flow test prototype. The latter was used blind in a virtual field trial of 431 randomized infection and control sera from the WHO HAT Specimen Biobank.In the virtual field trial, using two positive antigen bands as the criterion for infection, the sVSG117 and rISG65 dual-antigen lateral flow test prototype showed a sensitivity of 97.3% (95% CI: 93.3 to 99.2 and a specificity of 83.3% (95% CI: 76.4 to 88.9 for the detection of T. b. gambiense infections. The device was not as good for detecting T. b. rhodesiense infections using two positive antigen bands as the criterion for infection, with a sensitivity of 58.9% (95% CI: 44.9 to 71.9 and specificity of 97.3% (95% CI: 90.7 to 99.7. However, using one or both positive antigen band(s as the criterion for T. b. rhodesiense infection improved the sensitivity to 83.9% (95% CI: 71.7 to 92.4 with a specificity of 85.3% (95% CI: 75.3 to 92.4. These results encourage further development of the dual-antigen device for clinical use.

  20. Benign Cystic Peritoneal Mesothelioma Revealed by Small Bowel Obstruction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bray Madoué, Kaimba; Boniface, Moifo; Annick Laure, Edzimbi; Pierre, Herve

    2016-01-01

    Benign cystic peritoneal mesothelioma is a rare tumor which frequently occurs in women of reproductive age. Abdominal pain associated with pelvic or abdominal mass is the common clinical presentation. We report the case of a 22-year-old woman with a pathological proved benign cystic mesothelioma of the peritoneum revealed by a small bowel obstruction and a painful left-sided pelvic mass with signs of psoitis. Contrast enhanced abdominal CT-scan demonstrated a large pelvic cystic mass with mass effect on rectosigmoid and pelvic organs. The patient underwent surgical removal of the tumor. Pathological examination revealed the diagnosis of benign cystic mesothelioma of the peritoneum. The outcome was excellent with a 12-month recoil.

  1. Intracranial Hemorrhage Revealing Pseudohypoparathyroidism as a Cause of Fahr Syndrome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abhijit Swami

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Pseudohypoparathyroidism is an infrequently encountered disease. It is one of the causes of Fahr syndrome which also is a rare clinical entity caused by multiple diseases. A 4-year-old man hospitalized for sudden onset left hemiparesis and hypertension was diagnosed to have right thalamic and midbrain hemorrhage on plain CT scan of the head which also revealed co-existent extensive intracranial calcifications involving the basal ganglia and cerebellum bilaterally. General physical examination revealed features of Albright hereditary osteodystrophy, goitre, hypertension, left hemiparesis, and signs of cerebellar dysfunction. Laboratory findings suggested hypocalcemia, hyperphosphatemia along with high TSH, low FT4, low FT3, and high anti-TPO antibody. Though bilateral intracranial calcifications are usually encountered as an incidental radiological finding in the CT scan of brain, in this case, the patient admitted for thalamic and midbrain hemorrhage was on investigation for associated intracranial calcification, and goitre was also found to have coexisting pseudohypoparathyroidism and autoimmune hypothyroidism.

  2. Maps of random walks on complex networks reveal community structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosvall, Martin; Bergstrom, Carl T

    2008-01-29

    To comprehend the multipartite organization of large-scale biological and social systems, we introduce an information theoretic approach that reveals community structure in weighted and directed networks. We use the probability flow of random walks on a network as a proxy for information flows in the real system and decompose the network into modules by compressing a description of the probability flow. The result is a map that both simplifies and highlights the regularities in the structure and their relationships. We illustrate the method by making a map of scientific communication as captured in the citation patterns of >6,000 journals. We discover a multicentric organization with fields that vary dramatically in size and degree of integration into the network of science. Along the backbone of the network-including physics, chemistry, molecular biology, and medicine-information flows bidirectionally, but the map reveals a directional pattern of citation from the applied fields to the basic sciences.

  3. Systematic toxicological analysis revealing a rare case of captan ingestion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gottzein, Anne K; Musshoff, Frank; Madea, Burkhard

    2013-07-01

    This article presents a case of suicide by intoxication with various pharmaceuticals, particularly anticonvulsants, combined with the fungicide captan. A cause of death could not be ascertained at autopsy. However, systematic toxicological analysis (STA) including a screening via solid-phase microextraction (SPME) and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) for (semi) volatile organic compounds revealed results suggesting a possible cause of death. The effects of captan on the human organism, its metabolism, and distribution will be discussed. Macroscopically, the cause of death was unascertained. STA revealed clonazepam, citalopram, and its metabolites, lamotrigine, levetiracetam, lacosamide, clonazepam, captan, and its metabolite tetrahydrophthalimide (THPI). For the first time, it was detected in human viscera. A quantification of THPI was performed to obtain distribution in the organs. The significance of a complete STA must be emphasized. The presence of THPI would have been missed without previous detection of captan. Consequently, this fatality would not have been investigated satisfactorily.

  4. Genome Polymorphisms Between Indica and Japonica Revealed by RFLP

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG Song-wen; LIU Xia; XU Cai-guo; SHI Li-li; ZHANG Xin; DING De-liang; WANG Yong

    2007-01-01

    Revealing the genome polymorphisms between indica and japonica subspecies; RFLP markers, which are located across 12 chromosomes of rice, were used to analyze indica-japonica differentiation in different rice varieties. At the same time, genome sequence variations of screened loci were analyzed by bioinformatics method. Twenty-eight RFLP probes, which can classify indica-japonica rice, were confirmed. Subspecies genome polymorphisms of screened loci were found by analyzing the publication of the genome sequences data of rice. The study indicated that these screened markers can be used for classifying indica-japonica subspecies. With the publication of the genome sequences of rice, marker polymorphisms between indica and japonica subspecies can be revealed by genome differentiation.

  5. Intracranial hemorrhage revealing pseudohypoparathyroidism as a cause of fahr syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swami, Abhijit; Kar, Giridhari

    2011-01-01

    Pseudohypoparathyroidism is an infrequently encountered disease. It is one of the causes of Fahr syndrome which also is a rare clinical entity caused by multiple diseases. A 4-year-old man hospitalized for sudden onset left hemiparesis and hypertension was diagnosed to have right thalamic and midbrain hemorrhage on plain CT scan of the head which also revealed co-existent extensive intracranial calcifications involving the basal ganglia and cerebellum bilaterally. General physical examination revealed features of Albright hereditary osteodystrophy, goitre, hypertension, left hemiparesis, and signs of cerebellar dysfunction. Laboratory findings suggested hypocalcemia, hyperphosphatemia along with high TSH, low FT(4), low FT(3), and high anti-TPO antibody. Though bilateral intracranial calcifications are usually encountered as an incidental radiological finding in the CT scan of brain, in this case, the patient admitted for thalamic and midbrain hemorrhage was on investigation for associated intracranial calcification, and goitre was also found to have coexisting pseudohypoparathyroidism and autoimmune hypothyroidism.

  6. Acting without seeing: eye movements reveal visual processing without awareness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spering, Miriam; Carrasco, Marisa

    2015-04-01

    Visual perception and eye movements are considered to be tightly linked. Diverse fields, ranging from developmental psychology to computer science, utilize eye tracking to measure visual perception. However, this prevailing view has been challenged by recent behavioral studies. Here, we review converging evidence revealing dissociations between the contents of perceptual awareness and different types of eye movement. Such dissociations reveal situations in which eye movements are sensitive to particular visual features that fail to modulate perceptual reports. We also discuss neurophysiological, neuroimaging, and clinical studies supporting the role of subcortical pathways for visual processing without awareness. Our review links awareness to perceptual-eye movement dissociations and furthers our understanding of the brain pathways underlying vision and movement with and without awareness.

  7. Revealing Children's Experiences and Emotions through Q Methodology

    OpenAIRE

    Ingunn T. Ellingsen; Arlene Arstad Thorsen; Ingunn Størksen

    2014-01-01

    Over the last two decades, there has been a greater readiness to view children as competent contributors to our understanding of children’s lives and experiences. As a consequence of this, we have witnessed an increased focus on including children in research. When research aims at revealing children’s perspectives, experiences, and emotions, we need to employ methods that are easy-to-use means for obtaining their stories. In this paper, we argue that Q methodology is particularly suitable fo...

  8. Monofractal nature of air temperature signals reveals their climate variability

    OpenAIRE

    Deliège, Adrien; Nicolay, Samuel

    2014-01-01

    We use the discrete "wavelet transform microscope" to show that the surface air temperature signals of weather stations selected in Europe are monofractal. This study reveals that the information obtained in this way are richer than previous works studying long range correlations in meteorological stations. The approach presented here allows to bind the H\\"older exponents with the climate variability. We also establish that such a link does not exist with methods previously carried out.

  9. Dermatomyositis revealing breast cancer: report of a case.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamquami, Safae; Errarhay, Sanae; Mamouni, Nisrine; Bouchikhi, Chahrazad; Banani, Abdelaziz

    2015-01-01

    Dermatomyositis (DM) is a rare connective corresponding to an inflammatory disease of skeletal muscles. Paraneoplastic origin must always be sought, primarily gynecological tumor in women, but the investigations are often made difficult by the fact that a primary tumor is often not detectable at the time of the cutaneous manifestations. This approach includes in addition to the monitoring report at regular intervals of 6 to 12 months for two years after diagnosis. We report a case of Dermatomyositis revealing breast cancer.

  10. Transcriptome Reveals Cathepsin K in Periodontal Ligament Differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamada, S; Ozaki, N; Tsushima, K; Yamaba, S; Fujihara, C; Awata, T; Sakashita, H; Kajikawa, T; Kitagaki, J; Yamashita, M; Yanagita, M; Murakami, S

    2016-08-01

    Periodontal ligaments (PDLs) play an important role in remodeling the alveolar bond and cementum. Characterization of the periodontal tissue transcriptome remains incomplete, and an improved understanding of PDL features could aid in developing new regenerative therapies. Here, we aimed to generate and analyze a large human PDL transcriptome. We obtained PDLs from orthodontic treatment patients, isolated the RNA, and used a vector-capping method to make a complementary DNA library from >20,000 clones. Our results revealed that 58% of the sequences were full length. Furthermore, our analysis showed that genes expressed at the highest frequencies included those for collagen type I, collagen type III, and proteases. We also found 5 genes whose expressions have not been previously reported in human PDL. To access which of the highly expressed genes might be important for PDL cell differentiation, we used real-time polymerase chain reaction to measure their expression in differentiating cells. Among the genes tested, the cysteine protease cathepsin K had the highest upregulation, so we measured its relative expression in several tissues, as well as in osteoclasts, which are known to express high levels of cathepsin K. Our results revealed that PDL cells express cathepsin K at similar levels as osteoclasts, which are both expressed at higher levels than those of the other tissues tested. We also measured cathepsin K protein expression and enzyme activity during cell differentiation and found that both increased during this process. Immunocytochemistry experiments revealed that cathepsin K localizes to the interior of lysosomes. Last, we examined the effect of inhibiting cathepsin K during cell differentiation and found that cathepsin K inhibition stimulated calcified nodule formation and increased the levels of collagen type I and osteocalcin gene expression. Based on these results, cathepsin K seems to regulate collagen fiber accumulation during human PDL cell

  11. Genes but not genomes reveal bacterial domestication of Lactococcus lactis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Delphine Passerini

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The population structure and diversity of Lactococcus lactis subsp. lactis, a major industrial bacterium involved in milk fermentation, was determined at both gene and genome level. Seventy-six lactococcal isolates of various origins were studied by different genotyping methods and thirty-six strains displaying unique macrorestriction fingerprints were analyzed by a new multilocus sequence typing (MLST scheme. This gene-based analysis was compared to genomic characteristics determined by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The MLST analysis revealed that L. lactis subsp. lactis is essentially clonal with infrequent intra- and intergenic recombination; also, despite its taxonomical classification as a subspecies, it displays a genetic diversity as substantial as that within several other bacterial species. Genome-based analysis revealed a genome size variability of 20%, a value typical of bacteria inhabiting different ecological niches, and that suggests a large pan-genome for this subspecies. However, the genomic characteristics (macrorestriction pattern, genome or chromosome size, plasmid content did not correlate to the MLST-based phylogeny, with strains from the same sequence type (ST differing by up to 230 kb in genome size. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: The gene-based phylogeny was not fully consistent with the traditional classification into dairy and non-dairy strains but supported a new classification based on ecological separation between "environmental" strains, the main contributors to the genetic diversity within the subspecies, and "domesticated" strains, subject to recent genetic bottlenecks. Comparison between gene- and genome-based analyses revealed little relationship between core and dispensable genome phylogenies, indicating that clonal diversification and phenotypic variability of the "domesticated" strains essentially arose through substantial genomic flux within the dispensable

  12. Revealing and Characterizing Dark Excitons Through Coherent Multidimensional Spectroscopy

    CERN Document Server

    Tollerud, Jonathan O; Davis, Jeffrey A

    2016-01-01

    Dark excitons are of fundamental importance in a broad range of contexts, but are difficult to study using conventional optical spectroscopy due to their weak interaction with light. We show how coherent multidimensional spectroscopy can reveal and characterize dark states. Using this approach, we identify different types of dark excitons in InGaAs/GaAs quantum wells and determine details regarding lifetimes, homogeneous and inhomogeneous linewidths, broadening mechanisms and coupling strengths. The observations of coherent coupling between bright and dark excitons hint at a role for a multi-step process by which excitons in the barrier can relax into the quantum wells.

  13. How the ``Blues'' reveals the intimacy of music and physics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibson, J. Murray

    2013-03-01

    Little do most people know when they hear blues piano - and you'll hear some live in this talk - that physics permeates the style, as it does all of music. Why should you care? By deconstructing blues piano the intimacy of physics, mathematics and music will be revealed in its glory.[1] The exercise says something about how the brains of the music composer and of the listener must be intimately linked to the physical principles of acoustics. And it provides a great vehicle to explain physical phenomena to non-scientists - everything from quantum mechanics to protein structure.

  14. Mediated amperometry reveals different modes of yeast responses to sugars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garjonyte, Rasa; Melvydas, Vytautas; Malinauskas, Albertas

    2016-02-01

    Menadione-mediated amperometry at carbon paste electrodes modified with various yeasts (Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Candida pulcherrima, Pichia guilliermondii and Debaryomyces hansenii) was employed to monitor redox activity inside the yeast cells induced by glucose, fructose, sucrose, maltose or galactose. Continuous measurements revealed distinct modes (transient or gradually increasing) of the current development during the first 2 to 3 min after subjection to glucose, fructose and sucrose at electrodes containing S. cerevisiae and non-Saccharomyces strains. Different modes (increasing or decreasing) of the current development after yeast subjection to galactose at electrodes with S. cerevisiae or D. hansenii and at electrodes with C. pulcherrima and P. guilliermondii suggested different mechanisms of galactose assimilation.

  15. Malar Bone Metastasis Revealing a Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma

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    Ihsen Slim

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Papillary thyroid carcinoma is the most common form of differentiated thyroid carcinoma. It is generally confined to the neck with or without spread to regional lymph nodes. Metastatic thyroid carcinomas are uncommon and mainly include lung and bone. Metastases involving oral and maxillofacial region are extremely rare. We described a case of malar metastasis revealing a follicular variant of papillary thyroid carcinoma, presenting with pain and swelling of the left cheek in a 67-years-old female patient with an unspecified histological left lobo-isthmectomy medical history. To our knowledge, this is the first recorded instance of a malar metastasis from a follicular variant of papillary thyroid carcinoma.

  16. Windows PowerShell desired state configuration revealed

    CERN Document Server

    Chaganti, Ravikanth

    2014-01-01

    Desired State Configuration (DSC) is a powerful new configuration management platform that makes it easier than ever to perform cross-platform configuration management of your infrastructure, whether on-premise or in the cloud. DSC provides the management platform and Application Programming Interface (API) that can be used with any programming language. Windows PowerShell Desired State Configuration Revealed will take you through this new technology from start to finish and demonstrates the DSC interfaces through Windows PowerShell. DSC allows you to manage target devices by simply declarin

  17. Circumstellar Environments of MYSOs Revealed by IFU Spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navarete, F.; Damineli, A.; Barbosa, C. L.; Blum, R. D.

    2015-01-01

    Formation of massive stars (M > 8 M ⊙) is still not well understood and lacks of observational constraints. We observed 7 MYSO candidates using the NIFS spectrometer at Gemini North Telescope to study the accretion process at high angular resolution (~ 50 mas) and very closer to the central star. Preliminary results for 2 sources have revealed circumstellar structures traced by Brackett-Gamma, CO lines and extended H2 emission. Both sources present kinematics in the CO absorption lines, suggesting rotating structures. The next step will derive the central mass of each source by applying a keplerian model for these CO features.

  18. Planck revealed bulk motion of Centaurus A lobes

    CERN Document Server

    De Paolis, F; Nucita, A A; Ingrosso, G; Kashin, A L; Khachatryan, H G; Mirzoyan, S; Yegorian, G; Jetzer, Ph; Qadir, A; Vetrugno, D

    2015-01-01

    Planck data towards the active galaxy Centaurus A are analyzed in the 70, 100 and 143 GHz bands. We find a temperature asymmetry of the northern radio lobe with respect to the southern one that clearly extends at least up to 5 degrees from the Cen A center and diminishes towards the outer regions of the lobes. That transparent parameter - the temperature asymmetry - thus has to carry a principal information, i.e. indication on the line-of-sight bulk motion of the lobes, while the increase of that asymmetry at smaller radii reveals the differential dynamics of the lobes as expected at ejections from the center.

  19. Linear stability analysis reveals exclusion zone for sliding bed transport

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    Talmon Arnold M.

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available A bend or any another pipe component disturbs solids transport in pipes. Longitudinal pressure profiles downstream of such a component may show a stationary transient harmonic wave, as revealed by a recent settling slurry laboratory experiment. Therefore the fundamental transient response of the two-layer model for fully stratified flow is investigated as a first approach. A linear stability analysis of the sliding bed configuration is conducted. No stationary transient harmonic waves are found in this analysis, but adaptation lengths for exponential recovery are quantified. An example calculation is given for a 0.1 m diameter pipeline.

  20. IVT-seq reveals extreme bias in RNA sequencing

    OpenAIRE

    Kavaklı, Halil; Lahens, Nicholas F.; Zhang, Ray; Hayer, Katharina; Black, Michael B.; Dueck, Hannah; Pizarro, Angel; Kim, Junhyong; Irizarry, Rafael; Thomas, Russell S.; Grant, Gregory R.; Hogenesch, John B.

    2014-01-01

    RESEARCH Open Access IVT-seq reveals extreme bias in RNA sequencing Nicholas F Lahens1, Ibrahim Halil Kavakli2,3, Ray Zhang1, Katharina Hayer4, Michael B Black5, Hannah Dueck6, Angel Pizarro7, Junhyong Kim6, Rafael Irizarry8, Russell S Thomas5, Gregory R Grant4,9 and John B Hogenesch1* Abstract Background: RNA-seq is a powerful technique for identifying and quantifying transcription and splicing events, both known and novel. However, given its recent development and the prol...

  1. Revealing alteration of membrane structures during ischema using impedance spectroscopy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mihaela Gheorghiu

    2002-11-01

    Full Text Available Alterations of membrane structure and function are essential characteristics of cells undergoing ischemia. Noninvasive monitoring of tissue alterations during ischemia and the estimation of the reversibility domain (corresponding to organ capability to fully recover its functions after shifting back to normal blood perfusion are important for biomedical applications allowing better time management during surgical interventions, especially in organ transplantation. Due to it’s capability to reveal inhomogeneities, as well as it’s noninvasive character, impedance spectroscopy was used for continuous monitoring of the progression of excised tissue samples during ischemia. We have developed a fast, noninvasive, automated method for quantitative analysis of impedance spectra of tissue samples, capable of revealing, through characteristic parameters (dispersion amplitudes, time constants and distribution parameters membrane based microscopic processes like the closure ofgap-junctions (a characteristic of the early alterations of ischemic tissues in the reversibility phase. Microscopic and equivalent circuit modeling was used to probe the effect of closure of cell connections and of changes in electrical properties of cell constituents on impedance spectra. We have developed a normalizing procedure emphasizing the pattern of ischemic alterations and enabling the comparison of different data sets.

  2. Social Investment for Sustainability of Groundwater: A Revealed Preference Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edna Tusak Loehman

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Groundwater is a form of natural capital that is valued for the goods it provides, including ecosystem health, water quality, and water consumption. Degradation of groundwater could be alleviated through social investment such as for water reuse and desalination to reduce the need for withdrawals from groundwater. This paper develops a participatory planning process—based on combining revealed preference with economic optimization—to choose a desired future for sustaining groundwater. Generation of potential groundwater futures is based on an optimal control model with investment and withdrawal from groundwater as control variables. In this model, groundwater stock and aquatic health are included as inter-temporal public goods. The social discount rate expressing time preference—an important parameter that drives optimization—is revealed through the participatory planning process. To implement the chosen future, a new method of inter-temporal pricing is presented to finance investment and supply costs. Furthermore, it is shown that the desired social outcome could be achieved by a form of privatization in which the pricing method, the appropriate discount rate, and the planning period are contractually specified.

  3. High resolution FESEM and TEM reveal bacterial spore attachment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panessa-Warren, Barbara J; Tortora, George T; Warren, John B

    2007-08-01

    Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) studies in the 1960s and early 1970s using conventional thin section and freeze fracture methodologies revealed ultrastructural bacterial spore appendages. However, the limited technology at that time necessitated the time-consuming process of imaging serial sections and reconstructing each structure. Consequently, the distribution and function of these appendages and their possible role in colonization or pathogenesis remained unknown. By combining high resolution field emission electron microscopy with TEM images of identical bacterial spore preparations, we have been able to obtain images of intact and sectioned Bacillus and Clostridial spores to clearly visualize the appearance, distribution, resistance (to trypsin, chloramphenicol, and heat), and participation of these structures to facilitate attachment of the spores to glass, agar, and human cell substrates. Current user-friendly commercial field emission scanning electron microscopes (FESEMs), permit high resolution imaging, with high brightness guns at lower accelerating voltages for beam sensitive intact biological samples, providing surface images at TEM magnifications for making direct comparisons. For the first time, attachment structures used by pathogenic, environmental, and thermophile bacterial spores could be readily visualized on intact spores to reveal how specific appendages and outer spore coats participated in spore attachment, colonization, and invasion.

  4. Membrane Protein Properties Revealed through Data-Rich Electrostatics Calculations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marcoline, Frank V; Bethel, Neville; Guerriero, Christopher J; Brodsky, Jeffrey L; Grabe, Michael

    2015-08-04

    The electrostatic properties of membrane proteins often reveal many of their key biophysical characteristics, such as ion channel selectivity and the stability of charged membrane-spanning segments. The Poisson-Boltzmann (PB) equation is the gold standard for calculating protein electrostatics, and the software APBSmem enables the solution of the PB equation in the presence of a membrane. Here, we describe significant advances to APBSmem, including full automation of system setup, per-residue energy decomposition, incorporation of PDB2PQR, calculation of membrane-induced pKa shifts, calculation of non-polar energies, and command-line scripting for large-scale calculations. We highlight these new features with calculations carried out on a number of membrane proteins, including the recently solved structure of the ion channel TRPV1 and a large survey of 1,614 membrane proteins of known structure. This survey provides a comprehensive list of residues with large electrostatic penalties for being embedded in the membrane, potentially revealing interesting functional information.

  5. Invoking Thomas Kuhn: What Citation Analysis Reveals about Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loving, Cathleen C.; Cobern, William W.

    This paper analyzes how Thomas Kuhn's writings are used by others, especially science education researchers. Previous research in citation analysis is used to frame questions related to who cites Kuhn, in what manner and why. Research questions first focus on the variety of disciplines invoking Kuhn and to what extent Structure of Scientific Revolutions (SSR) is cited. The Web of Science database provides material from 1982 for this analysis. The science education literature is analyzed using back issues from 1985 of the Journal of Research in Science Teaching and Science Education. An article analysis reveals trends in terms of what Kuhnian ideas are most frequently invoked. Results indicate a wide array of disciplines from beekeeping to law cite Kuhn - especially generic citations to SSR. The science education journal analysis reveals pervasive use of the term paradigm, although use is quite varied. The two areas of research in science education most impacted by Kuhn appear to be conceptual change theory and constructivist epistemologies. Additional uses of Kuhn are discussed. The degree to which Kuhn is invoked in ways supporting the theoretical framework of citation analysis, whether his work is misappropriated, and the impact of Kuhn are discussed.

  6. Revealing Children's Experiences and Emotions through Q Methodology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ingunn T. Ellingsen

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Over the last two decades, there has been a greater readiness to view children as competent contributors to our understanding of children’s lives and experiences. As a consequence of this, we have witnessed an increased focus on including children in research. When research aims at revealing children’s perspectives, experiences, and emotions, we need to employ methods that are easy-to-use means for obtaining their stories. In this paper, we argue that Q methodology is particularly suitable for facilitating children’s participation in research. We will give a brief presentation of the methodology and demonstrate its relevance for research with children. We do so by presenting two research examples aiming at revealing children’s experiences and emotions in challenging life circumstances. In the first example, Q methodology was used with five-year-old children where the research topic was divorce. The second example is a study on family perceptions among adolescents in foster home care.

  7. Piriform spider silk sequences reveal unique repetitive elements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perry, David J; Bittencourt, Daniela; Siltberg-Liberles, Jessica; Rech, Elibio L; Lewis, Randolph V

    2010-11-08

    Orb-weaving spider silk fibers are assembled from very large, highly repetitive proteins. The repeated segments contain, in turn, short, simple, and repetitive amino acid motifs that account for the physical and mechanical properties of the assembled fiber. Of the six orb-weaver silk fibroins, the piriform silk that makes the attachment discs, which lashes the joints of the web and attaches dragline silk to surfaces, has not been previously characterized. Piriform silk protein cDNAs were isolated from phage libraries of three species: A. trifasciata , N. clavipes , and N. cruentata . The deduced amino acid sequences from these genes revealed two new repetitive motifs: an alternating proline motif, where every other amino acid is proline, and a glutamine-rich motif of 6-8 amino acids. Similar to other spider silk proteins, the repeated segments are large (>200 amino acids) and highly homogenized within a species. There is also substantial sequence similarity across the genes from the three species, with particular conservation of the repetitive motifs. Northern blot analysis revealed that the mRNA is larger than 11 kb and is expressed exclusively in the piriform glands of the spider. Phylogenetic analysis of the C-terminal regions of the new proteins with published spidroins robustly shows that the piriform sequences form an ortholog group.

  8. The microbiome of Brazilian mangrove sediments as revealed by metagenomics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernando Dini Andreote

    Full Text Available Here we embark in a deep metagenomic survey that revealed the taxonomic and potential metabolic pathways aspects of mangrove sediment microbiology. The extraction of DNA from sediment samples and the direct application of pyrosequencing resulted in approximately 215 Mb of data from four distinct mangrove areas (BrMgv01 to 04 in Brazil. The taxonomic approaches applied revealed the dominance of Deltaproteobacteria and Gammaproteobacteria in the samples. Paired statistical analysis showed higher proportions of specific taxonomic groups in each dataset. The metabolic reconstruction indicated the possible occurrence of processes modulated by the prevailing conditions found in mangrove sediments. In terms of carbon cycling, the sequences indicated the prevalence of genes involved in the metabolism of methane, formaldehyde, and carbon dioxide. With respect to the nitrogen cycle, evidence for sequences associated with dissimilatory reduction of nitrate, nitrogen immobilization, and denitrification was detected. Sequences related to the production of adenylsulfate, sulfite, and H(2S were relevant to the sulphur cycle. These data indicate that the microbial core involved in methane, nitrogen, and sulphur metabolism consists mainly of Burkholderiaceae, Planctomycetaceae, Rhodobacteraceae, and Desulfobacteraceae. Comparison of our data to datasets from soil and sea samples resulted in the allotment of the mangrove sediments between those samples. The results of this study add valuable data about the composition of microbial communities in mangroves and also shed light on possible transformations promoted by microbial organisms in mangrove sediments.

  9. Differential metabolism of Mycoplasma species as revealed by their genomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabricio B.M. Arraes

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available The annotation and comparative analyses of the genomes of Mycoplasma synoviae and Mycoplasma hyopneumonie, as well as of other Mollicutes (a group of bacteria devoid of a rigid cell wall, has set the grounds for a global understanding of their metabolism and infection mechanisms. According to the annotation data, M. synoviae and M. hyopneumoniae are able to perform glycolytic metabolism, but do not possess the enzymatic machinery for citrate and glyoxylate cycles, gluconeogenesis and the pentose phosphate pathway. Both can synthesize ATP by lactic fermentation, but only M. synoviae can convert acetaldehyde to acetate. Also, our genome analysis revealed that M. synoviae and M. hyopneumoniae are not expected to synthesize polysaccharides, but they can take up a variety of carbohydrates via the phosphoenolpyruvate-dependent phosphotransferase system (PEP-PTS. Our data showed that these two organisms are unable to synthesize purine and pyrimidine de novo, since they only possess the sequences which encode salvage pathway enzymes. Comparative analyses of M. synoviae and M. hyopneumoniae with other Mollicutes have revealed differential genes in the former two genomes coding for enzymes that participate in carbohydrate, amino acid and nucleotide metabolism and host-pathogen interaction. The identification of these metabolic pathways will provide a better understanding of the biology and pathogenicity of these organisms.

  10. Microsatellite genotyping reveals a signature in breast cancer exomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McIver, L J; Fonville, N C; Karunasena, E; Garner, H R

    2014-06-01

    Genomic instability at microsatellite loci is a hallmark of many cancers, including breast cancer. However, much of the genomic variation and many of the hereditary components responsible for breast cancer remain undetected. We hypothesized that variation at microsatellites could provide additional genomic markers for breast cancer risk assessment. A total of 1,345 germline and tumor DNA samples from individuals diagnosed with breast cancer, exome sequenced as part of The Cancer Genome Atlas, were analyzed for microsatellite variation. The comparison group for our analysis, representing healthy individuals, consisted of 249 females which were exome sequenced as part of the 1,000 Genomes Project. We applied our microsatellite-based genotyping pipeline to identify 55 microsatellite loci that can distinguish between the germline of individuals diagnosed with breast cancer and healthy individuals with a sensitivity of 88.4 % and a specificity of 77.1 %. Further, we identified additional microsatellite loci that are potentially useful for distinguishing between breast cancer subtypes, revealing a possible fifth subtype. These findings are of clinical interest as possible risk diagnostics and reveal genes that may be of potential therapeutic value, including genes previously not associated with breast cancer.

  11. Random field model reveals structure of the protein recombinational landscape.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philip A Romero

    Full Text Available We are interested in how intragenic recombination contributes to the evolution of proteins and how this mechanism complements and enhances the diversity generated by random mutation. Experiments have revealed that proteins are highly tolerant to recombination with homologous sequences (mutation by recombination is conservative; more surprisingly, they have also shown that homologous sequence fragments make largely additive contributions to biophysical properties such as stability. Here, we develop a random field model to describe the statistical features of the subset of protein space accessible by recombination, which we refer to as the recombinational landscape. This model shows quantitative agreement with experimental results compiled from eight libraries of proteins that were generated by recombining gene fragments from homologous proteins. The model reveals a recombinational landscape that is highly enriched in functional sequences, with properties dominated by a large-scale additive structure. It also quantifies the relative contributions of parent sequence identity, crossover locations, and protein fold to the tolerance of proteins to recombination. Intragenic recombination explores a unique subset of sequence space that promotes rapid molecular diversification and functional adaptation.

  12. NeuCode Proteomics Reveals Bap1 Regulation of Metabolism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joshua M. Baughman

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available We introduce neutron-encoded (NeuCode amino acid labeling of mice as a strategy for multiplexed proteomic analysis in vivo. Using NeuCode, we characterize an inducible knockout mouse model of Bap1, a tumor suppressor and deubiquitinase whose in vivo roles outside of cancer are not well established. NeuCode proteomics revealed altered metabolic pathways following Bap1 deletion, including profound elevation of cholesterol biosynthetic machinery coincident with reduced expression of gluconeogenic and lipid homeostasis proteins in liver. Bap1 loss increased pancreatitis biomarkers and reduced expression of mitochondrial proteins. These alterations accompany a metabolic remodeling with hypoglycemia, hypercholesterolemia, hepatic lipid loss, and acinar cell degeneration. Liver-specific Bap1 null mice present with fully penetrant perinatal lethality, severe hypoglycemia, and hepatic lipid deficiency. This work reveals Bap1 as a metabolic regulator in liver and pancreas, and it establishes NeuCode as a reliable proteomic method for deciphering in vivo biology.

  13. A systems biology approach reveals common metastatic pathways in osteosarcoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flores Ricardo J

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Osteosarcoma (OS is the most common malignant bone tumor in children and adolescents. The survival rate of patients with metastatic disease remains very dismal. Nevertheless, metastasis is a complex process and a single-level analysis is not likely to identify its key biological determinants. In this study, we used a systems biology approach to identify common metastatic pathways that are jointly supported by both mRNA and protein expression data in two distinct human metastatic OS models. Results mRNA expression microarray and N-linked glycoproteomic analyses were performed on two commonly used isogenic pairs of human metastatic OS cell lines, namely HOS/143B and SaOS-2/LM7. Pathway analysis of the differentially regulated genes and glycoproteins separately revealed pathways associated to metastasis including cell cycle regulation, immune response, and epithelial-to-mesenchymal-transition. However, no common significant pathway was found at both genomic and proteomic levels between the two metastatic models, suggesting a very different biological nature of the cell lines. To address this issue, we used a topological significance analysis based on a “shortest-path” algorithm to identify topological nodes, which uncovered additional biological information with respect to the genomic and glycoproteomic profiles but remained hidden from the direct analyses. Pathway analysis of the significant topological nodes revealed a striking concordance between the models and identified significant common pathways, including “Cytoskeleton remodeling/TGF/WNT”, “Cytoskeleton remodeling/Cytoskeleton remodeling”, and “Cell adhesion/Chemokines and adhesion”. Of these, the “Cytoskeleton remodeling/TGF/WNT” was the top ranked common pathway from the topological analysis of the genomic and proteomic profiles in the two metastatic models. The up-regulation of proteins in the “Cytoskeleton remodeling/TGF/WNT” pathway in the Sa

  14. A Survey of Electronic Serials Managers Reveals Diversity in Practice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Costello

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available A Review of: Branscome, B. A. (2013. Management of electronic serials in academic libraries: The results of an online survey. Serials Review, 39(4, 216-226. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.serrev.2013.10.004 Abstract Objective – To examine industry standards for the management of electronic serials and measure the adoption of electronic serials over print. Design – Survey questionnaire. Setting – Email lists aimed at academic librarians working in serials management. Subjects – 195 self-selected subscribers to serials email lists. Methods – The author created a 20 question survey that consisted primarily of closed-ended questions pertaining to the collection demographics, staff, budget, and tools of serials management groups in academic libraries. The survey was conducted via Survey Monkey and examined using the analytical features of the tool. Participants remained anonymous and the survey questions did not ask them to reveal identifiable information about their libraries. Main Results – Collection demographics questions revealed that 78% of surveyed librarians estimated that print-only collections represented 40% or fewer of their serials holdings. The author observed diversity in the factors that influence print to digital transitions in academic libraries. However 71.5% of participants indicated that publisher technology support like IP authentication was required before adopting digital subscriptions. A lack of standardization also marked serials workflows, department responsibilities, and department titles. The author did not find a correlation between serials budget and the enrollment size of the institution. Participants reported that they used tools from popular serials management vendors like Serials Solutions, Innovative Interfaces, EBSCO, and Ex Libris, but most indicated that they used more than one tool for serials management. Participants specified 52 unique serials management products used in their libraries. Conclusion

  15. Inheritance Patterns in Citation Networks Reveal Scientific Memes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuhn, Tobias; Perc, Matjaž; Helbing, Dirk

    2014-10-01

    Memes are the cultural equivalent of genes that spread across human culture by means of imitation. What makes a meme and what distinguishes it from other forms of information, however, is still poorly understood. Our analysis of memes in the scientific literature reveals that they are governed by a surprisingly simple relationship between frequency of occurrence and the degree to which they propagate along the citation graph. We propose a simple formalization of this pattern and validate it with data from close to 50 million publication records from the Web of Science, PubMed Central, and the American Physical Society. Evaluations relying on human annotators, citation network randomizations, and comparisons with several alternative approaches confirm that our formula is accurate and effective, without a dependence on linguistic or ontological knowledge and without the application of arbitrary thresholds or filters.

  16. Ternary structure reveals mechanism of a membrane diacylglycerol kinase

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Dianfan; Stansfeld, Phillip J.; Sansom, Mark S. P.; Keogh, Aaron; Vogeley, Lutz; Howe, Nicole; Lyons, Joseph A.; Aragao, David; Fromme, Petra; Fromme, Raimund; Basu, Shibom; Grotjohann, Ingo; Kupitz, Christopher; Rendek, Kimberley; Weierstall, Uwe; Zatsepin, Nadia A.; Cherezov, Vadim; Liu, Wei; Bandaru, Sateesh; English, Niall J.; Gati, Cornelius; Barty, Anton; Yefanov, Oleksandr; Chapman, Henry N.; Diederichs, Kay; Messerschmidt, Marc; Boutet, Sébastien; Williams, Garth J.; Marvin Seibert, M.; Caffrey, Martin

    2015-12-01

    Diacylglycerol kinase catalyses the ATP-dependent conversion of diacylglycerol to phosphatidic acid in the plasma membrane of Escherichia coli. The small size of this integral membrane trimer, which has 121 residues per subunit, means that available protein must be used economically to craft three catalytic and substrate-binding sites centred about the membrane/cytosol interface. How nature has accomplished this extraordinary feat is revealed here in a crystal structure of the kinase captured as a ternary complex with bound lipid substrate and an ATP analogue. Residues, identified as essential for activity by mutagenesis, decorate the active site and are rationalized by the ternary structure. The γ-phosphate of the ATP analogue is positioned for direct transfer to the primary hydroxyl of the lipid whose acyl chain is in the membrane. A catalytic mechanism for this unique enzyme is proposed. The active site architecture shows clear evidence of having arisen by convergent evolution.

  17. An adaptive perspective on revealed and concealed cues to empathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, Robert; Shingler, Polly

    2016-02-01

    Wu, Sheppard, and Mitchell (Br. J. Psychol., 2016; 107, 1-22) found that observers could accurately identify people with extreme but not more average empathy scores. Here, we further consider this U-shaped discrimination function. We first examine a statistical issue regarding the construction of the average groups, which are less homogenous by definition than the extreme groups. We then consider the kinds of questions arising when these results are considered within the adaptive framework of signal theory. Some interesting questions arise relating to the signal sender, including the costs and benefits to the sender in revealing and concealing true empathy levels, and the effects of adopting behavioural norms to conceal true levels of empathy.

  18. The genome of Tetranychus urticae reveals herbivorous pest adaptations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grbić, Miodrag; Van Leeuwen, Thomas; Clark, Richard M.; Rombauts, Stephane; Rouzé, Pierre; Grbić, Vojislava; Osborne, Edward J.; Dermauw, Wannes; Ngoc, Phuong Cao Thi; Ortego, Félix; Hernández-Crespo, Pedro; Diaz, Isabel; Martinez, Manuel; Navajas, Maria; Sucena, Élio; Magalhães, Sara; Nagy, Lisa; Pace, Ryan M.; Djuranović, Sergej; Smagghe, Guy; Iga, Masatoshi; Christiaens, Olivier; Veenstra, Jan A.; Ewer, John; Villalobos, Rodrigo Mancilla; Hutter, Jeffrey L.; Hudson, Stephen D.; Velez, Marisela; Yi, Soojin V.; Zeng, Jia; Pires-daSilva, Andre; Roch, Fernando; Cazaux, Marc; Navarro, Marie; Zhurov, Vladimir; Acevedo, Gustavo; Bjelica, Anica; Fawcett, Jeffrey A.; Bonnet, Eric; Martens, Cindy; Baele, Guy; Wissler, Lothar; Sanchez-Rodriguez, Aminael; Tirry, Luc; Blais, Catherine; Demeestere, Kristof; Henz, Stefan R.; Gregory, T. Ryan; Mathieu, Johannes; Verdon, Lou; Farinelli, Laurent; Schmutz, Jeremy; Lindquist, Erika; Feyereisen, René; Van de Peer, Yves

    2016-01-01

    The spider mite Tetranychus urticae is a cosmopolitan agricultural pest with an extensive host plant range and an extreme record of pesticide resistance. Here we present the completely sequenced and annotated spider mite genome, representing the first complete chelicerate genome. At 90 megabases T. urticae has the smallest sequenced arthropod genome. Compared with other arthropods, the spider mite genome shows unique changes in the hormonal environment and organization of the Hox complex, and also reveals evolutionary innovation of silk production. We find strong signatures of polyphagy and detoxification in gene families associated with feeding on different hosts and in new gene families acquired by lateral gene transfer. Deep transcriptome analysis of mites feeding on different plants shows how this pest responds to a changing host environment. The T. urticae genome thus offers new insights into arthropod evolution and plant–herbivore interactions, and provides unique opportunities for developing novel plant protection strategies. PMID:22113690

  19. Structure of mega-hemocyanin reveals protein origami in snails.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gatsogiannis, Christos; Hofnagel, Oliver; Markl, Jürgen; Raunser, Stefan

    2015-01-06

    Mega-hemocyanin is a 13.5 MDa oxygen transporter found in the hemolymph of some snails. Similar to typical gastropod hemocyanins, it is composed of 400 kDa building blocks but has additional 550 kDa subunits. Together, they form a large, completely filled cylinder. The structural basis for this highly complex protein packing is not known so far. Here, we report the electron cryomicroscopy (cryo-EM) structure of mega-hemocyanin complexes from two different snail species. The structures reveal that mega-hemocyanin is composed of flexible building blocks that differ in their conformation, but not in their primary structure. Like a protein origami, these flexible blocks are optimally packed, implementing different local symmetries and pseudosymmetries. A comparison between the two structures suggests a surprisingly simple evolutionary mechanism leading to these large oxygen transporters.

  20. High throughput sequencing reveals a novel fabavirus infecting sweet cherry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villamor, D E V; Pillai, S S; Eastwell, K C

    2017-03-01

    The genus Fabavirus currently consists of five species represented by viruses that infect a wide range of hosts but none reported from temperate climate fruit trees. A virus with genomic features resembling fabaviruses (tentatively named Prunus virus F, PrVF) was revealed by high throughput sequencing of extracts from a sweet cherry tree (Prunus avium). PrVF was subsequently shown to be graft transmissible and further identified in three other non-symptomatic Prunus spp. from different geographical locations. Two genetic variants of RNA1 and RNA2 coexisted in the same samples. RNA1 consisted of 6,165 and 6,163 nucleotides, and RNA2 consisted of 3,622 and 3,468 nucleotides.

  1. Structural information revealed by the dispersion of ADC with frequency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Hua; Jiang, Xiaoyu; Wang, Feng; Xu, Junzhong; Gore, John C

    2015-11-01

    Diffusion MRI provides a non-invasive means to characterize tissue microstructure at varying length scales. Temporal diffusion spectra reveal how the apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) varies with frequency. When measured using oscillating gradient spin echo sequences, the manner in which ADC disperses with gradient frequency (which is related to the reciprocal of diffusion time) provides information on the characteristic dimensions of restricting structures within the medium. For example, the dispersion of ADC with oscillating gradient frequency (ΔfADC) has been shown to correlate with axon sizes in white matter and provide novel tissue contrast in images of mouse hippocampus and cerebellum. However, despite increasing interest in applying frequency-dependent ADC to derive novel information on tissue, the interpretations of ADC spectra are not always clear. In this study, the relation between ADC spectra and restricting dimensions are further elucidated and used to derive novel image contrast related to the sizes of intrinsic microstructures.

  2. Demand Model Combining Stated And Revealed Preference Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luciana Londero Brandli

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available The revealed and stated preference methods have been contributing a lot for the development of the econometric literature in the attempt of determining the variables that influence the individual decision in a choice process. This article combines preference data, with the objective of obtaining the advantages of the complementarity of the forces and frankness of both types of data. The approach involves the estimate of a model only with RP data, only with SP data and combining RP and SP data. The application is in the housing market, where it is observed, through the literature, that most of the papers of the consumer's choice has restricted the only one approaches. The utility functions obtained show the relative importance of the attributes, the tendency of behavior through the signs and its significance statistical. The results analysis of the models indicates differences and similarities about the attribute’s behavior.

  3. Deciphering CAPTCHAs: what a Turing test reveals about human cognition.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Hannagan

    Full Text Available Turning Turing's logic on its head, we used widespread letter-based Turing Tests found on the internet (CAPTCHAs to shed light on human cognition. We examined the basis of the human ability to solve CAPTCHAs, where machines fail. We asked whether this is due to our use of slow-acting inferential processes that would not be available to machines, or whether fast-acting automatic orthographic processing in humans has superior robustness to shape variations. A masked priming lexical decision experiment revealed efficient processing of CAPTCHA words in conditions that rule out the use of slow inferential processing. This shows that the human superiority in solving CAPTCHAs builds on a high degree of invariance to location and continuous transforms, which is achieved during the very early stages of visual word recognition in skilled readers.

  4. Metagenome mining reveals polytheonamides as posttranslationally modified ribosomal peptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freeman, Michael F; Gurgui, Cristian; Helf, Maximilian J; Morinaka, Brandon I; Uria, Agustinus R; Oldham, Neil J; Sahl, Hans-Georg; Matsunaga, Shigeki; Piel, Jörn

    2012-10-19

    It is held as a paradigm that ribosomally synthesized peptides and proteins contain only l-amino acids. We demonstrate a ribosomal origin of the marine sponge-derived polytheonamides, exceptionally potent, giant natural-product toxins. Isolation of the biosynthetic genes from the sponge metagenome revealed a bacterial gene architecture. Only six candidate enzymes were identified for 48 posttranslational modifications, including 18 epimerizations and 17 methylations of nonactivated carbon centers. Three enzymes were functionally validated, which showed that a radical S-adenosylmethionine enzyme is responsible for the unidirectional epimerization of multiple and different amino acids. Collectively, these complex alterations create toxins that function as unimolecular minimalistic ion channels with near-femtomolar activity. This study broadens the biosynthetic scope of ribosomal systems and creates new opportunities for peptide and protein bioengineering.

  5. Heat islands over Mumbai as revealed by autorecorded thermograph data

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    A K Srivastava; James Voogt; S R Kshirsagar; Kavita Srivastava

    2016-02-01

    This study examined hourly temperature data of two locations of Mumbai metropolitan city. One data point (Coloba, Mumbai) is in centre of the city and the other one (Santacruz, Mumbai) is at the airport. The study finds that there were many occasions when night-time hourly temperatures over the city centre were considerably higher than that of the airport, even though temperature at the time of sunset at both the places was nearly same. In this study, the occasions, when hourly night-time temperature over city was more than that of the airport by objectively defined threshold value (3.0°C in this study) for most of the hours in the night, were termed as heat island events. Analysis of the study reveals that these events are mostly confined to November–February months. The study also found that frequency of such events has doubled in recent two decades in comparison to the earlier two decades.

  6. Seasonal succession in zooplankton feeding traits reveals trophic trait coupling

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kenitz, Kasia; Visser, Andre; Mariani, Patrizio

    2017-01-01

    The seasonal forcing of pelagic communities invokes a succession of the dominant phytoplankton and zooplankton species. Here, we characterize the seasonal succession of the plankton traits and their interactions using observations and model simulations of the plankton community in the western...... English Channel. We focus on activity traits that characterize the defensive and feeding abilities of zooplankton and distinguish between low risk, low return ambush feeders and high risk, high return feeding-current feeders. While the phytoplankton succession depends on traits related to nutrient...... non-motile cells flourishing in spring and motile community dominating during summer. The zooplankton community is dominated by active feeding-current feeders with peak biomass in the late spring declining during summer. The model reveals how zooplankton grazing reinforces protist plankton seasonal...

  7. Multicentric Castleman's Disease in a Child Revealed by Chronic Diarrhea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benmiloud, Sarra; Chaouki, Sana; Atmani, Samir; Hida, Moustapha

    2015-01-01

    Multicentric Castleman's disease is a rare benign and unexplained lymphoproliferative disorder that is extremely uncommon in children. It presents with fever, systemic symptoms, generalized lymphadenopathy, and laboratory markers of inflammation. Its treatment is not standardized and its prognosis is poor. We report a novel case of multicentric Castleman's disease in a 13-year-old girl who had presented with chronic diarrhea as the only initial presenting symptom. The diagnosis of celiac or inflammatory bowel diseases was suspected, but two and a half years later, the diagnosis of multicentric Castleman's disease was brought following the appearance of abdominal mass whose biopsy revealed Castleman's disease in the plasma cell form. The outcome was favorable after treatment by corticosteroid, chemotherapy, and surgery. The occurrence of diarrhea as the initial symptom of multicentric Castleman's disease without lymph node involvement is very rare. This case report underlines the diagnostic difficulties and the long interval between onset and diagnosis when diarrhea occurs first. PMID:25737793

  8. Hodgkin's Lymphoma Revealed by Hemophagocytic Lymphohistiocytosis in a Child

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benmiloud, Sarra; Hbibi, Mohamed; Chaouki, Sana; Abourazzak, Sana; Hida, Moustapha

    2014-01-01

    Hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis (HLH) is a severe life-threatening disorder, responsible for extensive phagocytosis of hematopoietic cells and causing a multisystem organ failure. If lymphomas are common causes of HLH, the association with Hodgkin's lymphoma is rarely described in children. We report a case of a 9-year-old boy presenting with HLH as an initial manifestation of Hodgkin's lymphoma. He has been suffering from persistent high fever, asthenia, weight loss, and hepatosplenomegaly with no lymphadenopathy. The diagnosis of HLH secondary to infectious disease was initially worn. The patient received high-dose intravenous immunoglobulin with broad-spectrum antibiotics. However, his state got worse with the onset of dry cough and pleural effusion. Histopathologic examination of pleural fluid showed the presence of Reed-Sternberg cells. The outcome was favorable after treatment by corticosteroid and chemotherapy. Hodgkin's lymphoma revealed by HLH is a source of delayed diagnosis and should be borne in mind in children. PMID:25328742

  9. Metabolomics reveals metabolic biomarkers of Crohn's disease

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jansson, J.K.; Willing, B.; Lucio, M.; Fekete, A.; Dicksved, J.; Halfvarson, J.; Tysk, C.; Schmitt-Kopplin, P.

    2009-06-01

    The causes and etiology of Crohn's disease (CD) are currently unknown although both host genetics and environmental factors play a role. Here we used non-targeted metabolic profiling to determine the contribution of metabolites produced by the gut microbiota towards disease status of the host. Ion Cyclotron Resonance Fourier Transform Mass Spectrometry (ICR-FT/MS) was used to discern the masses of thousands of metabolites in fecal samples collected from 17 identical twin pairs, including healthy individuals and those with CD. Pathways with differentiating metabolites included those involved in the metabolism and or synthesis of amino acids, fatty acids, bile acids and arachidonic acid. Several metabolites were positively or negatively correlated to the disease phenotype and to specific microbes previously characterized in the same samples. Our data reveal novel differentiating metabolites for CD that may provide diagnostic biomarkers and/or monitoring tools as well as insight into potential targets for disease therapy and prevention.

  10. Dramatic changes in electronic structure revealed by fractionally charged nuclei

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cohen, Aron J. [Department of Chemistry, Lensfield Rd., University of Cambridge, Cambridge CB2 1EW (United Kingdom); Mori-Sánchez, Paula, E-mail: paula.mori@uam.es [Departamento de Química, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, 28049 Madrid (Spain)

    2014-01-28

    Discontinuous changes in the electronic structure upon infinitesimal changes to the Hamiltonian are demonstrated. These are revealed in one and two electron molecular systems by full configuration interaction (FCI) calculations when the realm of the nuclear charge is extended to be fractional. FCI electron densities in these systems show dramatic changes in real space and illustrate the transfer, hopping, and removal of electrons. This is due to the particle nature of electrons seen in stretched systems and is a manifestation of an energy derivative discontinuity at constant number of electrons. Dramatic errors of density functional theory densities are seen in real space as this physics is missing from currently used approximations. The movements of electrons in these simple systems encapsulate those in real physical processes, from chemical reactions to electron transport and pose a great challenge for the development of new electronic structure methods.

  11. Conformational changes in DNA gyrase revealed by limited proteolysis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kampranis, S C; Maxwell, A

    1998-01-01

    We have used limited proteolysis to identify conformational changes in DNA gyrase. Gyrase exhibits a proteolytic fingerprint dominated by two fragments, one of approximately 62 kDa, deriving from the A protein, and another of approximately 25 kDa from the B protein. Quinolone binding to the enzyme......-DNA complex induces a conformational change which is reflected in the protection of the C-terminal 47-kDa domain of the B protein. An active site mutant (Tyr122 to Ser in the A protein) that binds quinolones but cannot cleave DNA still gives the quinolone proteolytic pattern, while stabilization of a cleaved......-DNA intermediate by calcium ions does not reveal any protection, suggesting that the quinolone-induced conformational change is different from an "open-gate" state of the enzyme. A quinolone-resistant mutant of gyrase fails to give the characteristic quinolone-associated proteolytic signature. The ATP...

  12. Heat islands over Mumbai as revealed by autorecorded thermograph data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srivastava, A. K.; Voogt, James; Kshirsagar, S. R.; Srivastava, Kavita

    2016-02-01

    This study examined hourly temperature data of two locations of Mumbai metropolitan city. One data point (Coloba, Mumbai) is in centre of the city and the other one (Santacruz, Mumbai) is at the airport. The study finds that there were many occasions when night-time hourly temperatures over the city centre were considerably higher than that of the airport, even though temperature at the time of sunset at both the places was nearly same. In this study, the occasions, when hourly night-time temperature over city was more than that of the airport by objectively defined threshold value (3.0 ∘C in this study) for most of the hours in the night, were termed as heat island events. Analysis of the study reveals that these events are mostly confined to November-February months. The study also found that frequency of such events has doubled in recent two decades in comparison to the earlier two decades.

  13. Insights revealed by rodent models of sugar binge eating.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murray, Susan M; Tulloch, Alastair J; Chen, Eunice Y; Avena, Nicole M

    2015-12-01

    Binge eating is seen across the spectrum of eating disorder diagnoses as well as among individuals who do not meet diagnostic criteria. Analyses of the specific types of foods that are frequently binged upon reveal that sugar-rich items feature prominently in binge-type meals, making the effects of binge consumption of sugar an important focus of study. One avenue to do this involves the use of animal models. Foundational and recent studies of animal models of sugar bingeing, both outlined here, lend insight into the various neurotransmitters and neuropeptides that may participate in or be altered by this behavior. Further, several preclinical studies incorporating sugar bingeing paradigms have explored the utility of pharmacological agents that target such neural systems for reducing sugar bingeing in an effort to enhance clinical treatment. Indeed, the translational implications of findings generated using animal models of sugar bingeing are considered here, along with potential avenues for further study.

  14. Endoperoxides Revealed as Origin of the Toxicity of Graphene Oxide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pieper, Hanna; Chercheja, Serghei; Eigler, Siegfried; Halbig, Christian E; Filipovic, Milos R; Mokhir, Andriy

    2016-01-04

    Potential biomedicinal applications of graphene oxide (GO), for example, as a carrier of biomolecules or a reagent for photothermal therapy and biosensing, are limited by its cytotoxicity and mutagenicity. It is believed that these properties are at least partially caused by GO-induced oxidative stress in cells. However, it is not known which chemical fragments of GO are responsible for this unfavorable effect. We generated four GOs containing variable redox-active groups on the surface, including Mn(2+), C-centered radicals, and endoperoxides (EPs). A comparison of the abilities of these materials to generate reactive oxygen species in human cervical cancer cells revealed that EPs play a crucial role in GO-induced oxidative stress. These data could be applied to the rational design of biocompatible nontoxic GOs for biomedical applications.

  15. Towards revealing the functions of all genes in plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhee, Seung Yon; Mutwil, Marek

    2014-04-01

    The great recent progress made in identifying the molecular parts lists of organisms revealed the paucity of our understanding of what most of the parts do. In this review, we introduce computational and statistical approaches and omics data used for inferring gene function in plants, with an emphasis on network-based inference. We also discuss caveats associated with network-based function predictions such as performance assessment, annotation propagation, the guilt-by-association concept, and the meaning of hubs. Finally, we note the current limitations and possible future directions such as the need for gold standard data from several species, unified access to data and tools, quantitative comparison of data and tool quality, and high-throughput experimental validation platforms for systematic gene function elucidation in plants.

  16. Dramatic changes in electronic structure revealed by fractionally charged nuclei

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Aron J.; Mori-Sánchez, Paula

    2014-01-01

    Discontinuous changes in the electronic structure upon infinitesimal changes to the Hamiltonian are demonstrated. These are revealed in one and two electron molecular systems by full configuration interaction (FCI) calculations when the realm of the nuclear charge is extended to be fractional. FCI electron densities in these systems show dramatic changes in real space and illustrate the transfer, hopping, and removal of electrons. This is due to the particle nature of electrons seen in stretched systems and is a manifestation of an energy derivative discontinuity at constant number of electrons. Dramatic errors of density functional theory densities are seen in real space as this physics is missing from currently used approximations. The movements of electrons in these simple systems encapsulate those in real physical processes, from chemical reactions to electron transport and pose a great challenge for the development of new electronic structure methods.

  17. An alternative RNA polymerase I structure reveals a dimer hinge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kostrewa, Dirk; Kuhn, Claus-D; Engel, Christoph; Cramer, Patrick

    2015-09-01

    RNA polymerase I (Pol I) is the central, 14-subunit enzyme that synthesizes the ribosomal RNA (rRNA) precursor in eukaryotic cells. The recent crystal structure of Pol I at 2.8 Å resolution revealed two novel elements: the `expander' in the active-centre cleft and the `connector' that mediates Pol I dimerization [Engel et al. (2013), Nature (London), 502, 650-655]. Here, a Pol I structure in an alternative crystal form that was solved by molecular replacement using the original atomic Pol I structure is reported. The resulting alternative structure lacks the expander but still shows an expanded active-centre cleft. The neighbouring Pol I monomers form a homodimer with a relative orientation distinct from that observed previously, establishing the connector as a hinge between Pol I monomers.

  18. Revealing the structure of the world airline network

    CERN Document Server

    Verma, Trivik; Herrmann, Hans J

    2014-01-01

    Resilience of most critical infrastructures against failure of elements that appear insignificant is usually taken for granted. The World Airline Network (WAN) is an infrastructure that reduces the geographical gap between societies, both small and large, and brings forth economic gains. With the extensive use of a publicly maintained data set that contains information about airports and alternative connections between these airports, we empirically reveal that the WAN is a redundant and resilient network for long distance air travel, but otherwise breaks down completely due to removal of short and apparently insignificant connections. These short range connections with moderate number of passengers and alternate flights are the connections that keep remote parts of the world accessible. It is surprising, insofar as there exists a highly resilient and strongly connected core consisting of a small fraction of airports (around 2.3%) together with an extremely fragile star-like periphery. Yet, in spite of their ...

  19. Offenders' crime narratives as revealed by the Narrative Roles Questionnaire.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Youngs, Donna; Canter, David V

    2013-03-01

    The study of narrative processes as part of the immediate factors that shape criminal action is limited by the lack of a methodology for differentiating the narrative themes that characterise specific crime events. The current study explores how the roles offenders see themselves as playing during an offence encapsulate their underlying crime narratives and thus provide the basis for a quantitative methodology. To test this possibility, a 33-item Narrative Roles Questionnaire (NRQ) was developed from intensive interviews with offenders about their experience of committing a recent offence. A multidimensional analysis of the NRQ completed by 71 convicted offenders revealed life narrative themes similar to those identified in fiction by Frye and with noncriminals by McAdams, labelled The Professional, Victim, Hero, and Revenger offence roles. The NRQ thus is a first step in opening up the possibility of empirical studies of the narrative aetiological perspective in criminology.

  20. Marine and terrestrial ecology: unifying concepts, revealing differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webb, Thomas J

    2012-10-01

    The extent to which similar ecological processes operate on land and in the sea has been much debated, with apparently 'fundamental' differences often disappearing when appropriate comparisons are made. However, marine and terrestrial ecology have developed as largely separate intellectual endeavours, which has hampered the search for general patterns and mechanisms. Here, I argue that marine-terrestrial comparative studies can be extremely useful at uncovering mechanisms when they explicitly consider those facets of the environment that are important to a particular hypothesis. Furthermore, the binary 'marine-terrestrial' division misses many opportunities for more interesting comparisons, several of which I highlight here. Increasing the flow of concepts, hypotheses, and data between marine and terrestrial ecologists is essential to reveal those differences that really are important.

  1. Sequencing of 50 human exomes reveals adaptation to high altitude

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yi, Xin; Liang, Yu; Huerta-Sanchez, Emilia;

    2010-01-01

    Residents of the Tibetan Plateau show heritable adaptations to extreme altitude. We sequenced 50 exomes of ethnic Tibetans, encompassing coding sequences of 92% of human genes, with an average coverage of 18x per individual. Genes showing population-specific allele frequency changes, which...... represent strong candidates for altitude adaptation, were identified. The strongest signal of natural selection came from endothelial Per-Arnt-Sim (PAS) domain protein 1 (EPAS1), a transcription factor involved in response to hypoxia. One single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) at EPAS1 shows a 78% frequency...... difference between Tibetan and Han samples, representing the fastest allele frequency change observed at any human gene to date. This SNP's association with erythrocyte abundance supports the role of EPAS1 in adaptation to hypoxia. Thus, a population genomic survey has revealed a functionally important locus...

  2. [Thoracic aortic dissection revealed by systemic cholesterol embolism].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braem, L; Paule, P; Héno, P; Morand, J J; Mafart, B; La Folie, T; Varlet, P; Mioulet, D; Fourcade, L

    2006-10-01

    Systemic cholesterol embolism is a rare complication of atherosclerosis, and has various presentations. Arterial catheterisms are a common cause. However, the association with an aortic dissection has been exceptionally reported. We report the observation of a 70 year-old man, with coronary artery disease, hypertension, diabetes and dyslipidemia. Six months before hospitalization, a coronary angioplasty was performed due to recurrent angina. The association of purpuric lesions on the feet, with acute renal failure confirmed cholesterol embolism syndrome. Transoesophageal echocardiography showed a dissection of the descending thoracic aorta associated with complex atheroma. The evolution was marked by the pulpar necrosis of a toe and by a worsening of the renal failure, requiring definitive hemodialysis. Further echographic control highlighted the rupture of the intimal veil of the dissection. Cholesterol embolism syndrome may reveal an aortic dissection in patients without thoracic symptoms. In such cases, transoesophageal echocardiography is a useful and non-invasive examination.

  3. Super-resolution microscopy reveals compartmentalization of peroxisomal membrane proteins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Galiani, Silvia; Waithe, Dominic; Reglinski, Katharina

    2016-01-01

    Membrane-associated events during peroxisomal protein import processes play an essential role in peroxisome functionality. Many details of these processes are not known due to missing spatial resolution of technologies capable of investigating peroxisomes directly in the cell. Here, we present...... the use of super-resolution optical stimulated emission depletion microscopy to investigate with sub-60-nm resolution the heterogeneous spatial organization of the peroxisomal proteins PEX5, PEX14, and PEX11 around actively importing peroxisomes, showing distinct differences between these peroxins....... Moreover, imported protein sterol carrier protein 2 (SCP2) occupies only a subregion of larger peroxisomes, highlighting the heterogeneous distribution of proteins even within the peroxisome. Finally, our data reveal subpopulations of peroxisomes showing only weak colocalization between PEX14 and PEX5...

  4. [Hodgkin disease revealed by a nephrotic syndrome: A case report].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheptou, M; Pichault, V; Campagni, R; Vodoff, M-V; Fischbach, M; Paillard, C

    2015-12-01

    Pediatric nephrotic syndrome (NS) is most often idiopathic or primary but in rare cases, it can be secondary to neoplasia. We report on a case of steroid-resistant NS revealing as a paraneoplastic syndrome of Hodgkin disease (HD) in a 12-year-old boy. The onset of the NS can be earlier, later, or simultaneous to the HD. Treatment of the lymphoma allows the disappearance of the NS. In the case we observed, the diagnosis of HD was delayed because HD presented with an isolated, hilar adenopathy in the absence of retroperitoneal or peripheral locations. In children aged 10 years or more presenting with NS, steroid-resistant or otherwise, a possible paraneoplastic origin such as Hodgkin lymphoma should always be taken into consideration and eventually eliminated.

  5. Synthetic protein interactions reveal a functional map of the cell

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berry, Lisa K; Ólafsson, Guðjón; Ledesma-Fernández, Elena; Thorpe, Peter H

    2016-01-01

    To understand the function of eukaryotic cells, it is critical to understand the role of protein-protein interactions and protein localization. Currently, we do not know the importance of global protein localization nor do we understand to what extent the cell is permissive for new protein associations – a key requirement for the evolution of new protein functions. To answer this question, we fused every protein in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae with a partner from each of the major cellular compartments and quantitatively assessed the effects upon growth. This analysis reveals that cells have a remarkable and unanticipated tolerance for forced protein associations, even if these associations lead to a proportion of the protein moving compartments within the cell. Furthermore, the interactions that do perturb growth provide a functional map of spatial protein regulation, identifying key regulatory complexes for the normal homeostasis of eukaryotic cells. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.13053.001 PMID:27098839

  6. Revealed Comparative Advantage and Competitiveness in Chinese Agricultural Sectors

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2005-01-01

    This paper examined the competitiveness of Chinese agricultural products, in relation to the rest of the world, based on the index of revealed comparative advantage, using lots of data during period of 1980 to 2000. The index is useful in identifying the demarcation between comparative advantage and comparative disadvantage, though a problem exits when using it. China is shown to have a comparative advantage in a range of agricultural products, including edible vegetables and tea. This complements the findings of those studies that have used price and cost based on approaches in identifying competitiveness in agricultural products. Results indicated that the RCA values had been weakening over the 21-year period. These have vastly different implication for the future reform in China's agriculture.

  7. ID-Check: Online Concealed Information Test Reveals True Identity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verschuere, Bruno; Kleinberg, Bennett

    2016-01-01

    The Internet has already changed people's lives considerably and is likely to drastically change forensic research. We developed a web-based test to reveal concealed autobiographical information. Initial studies identified a number of conditions that affect diagnostic efficiency. By combining these moderators, this study investigated the full potential of the online ID-check. Participants (n = 101) tried to hide their identity and claimed a false identity in a reaction time-based Concealed Information Test. Half of the participants were presented with personal details (e.g., first name, last name, birthday), whereas the others only saw irrelevant details. Results showed that participants' true identity could be detected with high accuracy (AUC = 0.98; overall accuracy: 86-94%). Online memory detection can reliably and validly detect whether someone is hiding their true identity. This suggests that online memory detection might become a valuable tool for forensic applications.

  8. Stochastic heart-rate model can reveal pathologic cardiac dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuusela, Tom

    2004-03-01

    A simple one-dimensional Langevin-type stochastic difference equation can simulate the heart-rate fluctuations in a time scale from minutes to hours. The model consists of a deterministic nonlinear part and a stochastic part typical of Gaussian noise, and both parts can be directly determined from measured heart-rate data. Data from healthy subjects typically exhibit the deterministic part with two or more stable fixed points. Studies of 15 congestive heart-failure subjects reveal that the deterministic part of pathologic heart dynamics has no clear stable fixed points. Direct simulations of the stochastic model for normal and pathologic cases can produce statistical parameters similar to those of real subjects. Results directly indicate that pathologic situations simplify the heart-rate control system.

  9. Eye movement monitoring reveals differential influences of emotion on memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lily Riggs

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Research shows that memory for emotional aspects of an event may be enhanced at the cost of impaired memory for surrounding peripheral details. However, this has only been assessed directly via verbal reports which reveal the outcome of a long stream of processing but cannot shed light on how/when emotion may affect the retrieval process. In the present experiment, eye movement monitoring was used as an indirect measure of memory as it can reveal aspects of online memory processing. For example, do emotions modulate the nature of memory representations or the speed with which such memories can be accessed? Participants viewed central negative and neutral scenes surrounded by three neutral objects and after a brief delay, memory was assessed indirectly via eye movement monitoring and then directly via verbal reports. Consistent with the previous literature, emotion enhanced central and impaired peripheral memory as indexed by eye movement scanning and verbal reports. This suggests that eye movement scanning may contribute and/or is related to conscious access of memory. However, the central/peripheral tradeoff effect was not observed in an early measure of eye movement behavior, i.e. participants were faster to orient to a critical region of change in the periphery irrespective of whether it was previously studied in a negative or neutral context. These findings demonstrate emotion’s differential influences on different aspects of retrieval. In particular, emotion appears to affect the detail within, and/or the evaluation of, stored memory representations, but it may not affect the initial access to those representations.

  10. Cyp1a reporter zebrafish reveals target tissues for dioxin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kim, Kun-Hee [Department of Biomedical Sciences, Chonnam National University Medical School, Gwangju (Korea, Republic of); Department of Microbiology, Chonnam National University Medical School, Gwangju (Korea, Republic of); Park, Hye-Jeong [Department of Biomedical Sciences, Chonnam National University Medical School, Gwangju (Korea, Republic of); Kim, Jin Hee [Department of Biomedical Sciences, Chonnam National University Medical School, Gwangju (Korea, Republic of); Department of Microbiology, Chonnam National University Medical School, Gwangju (Korea, Republic of); Kim, Suhyun [Graduate School of Medicine, Korea University, Ansan (Korea, Republic of); Williams, Darren R. [New Drug Targets Laboratory, School of Life Sciences, Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology, Gwangju (Korea, Republic of); Kim, Myeong-Kyu [Department of Neurology, Chonnam National University Medical School, Gwangju (Korea, Republic of); Jung, Young Do [Department of Biochemistry, Chonnam National University Medical School, Gwangju (Korea, Republic of); Teraoka, Hiroki [School of Veterinary Medicine, Rakuno Gakuen University, Ebetsu (Japan); Park, Hae-Chul [Graduate School of Medicine, Korea University, Ansan (Korea, Republic of); Choy, Hyon E., E-mail: hyonchoy@chonnam.ac.kr [Department of Microbiology, Chonnam National University Medical School, Gwangju (Korea, Republic of); Shin, Boo Ahn, E-mail: bashin@chonnam.ac.kr [Department of Microbiology, Chonnam National University Medical School, Gwangju (Korea, Republic of); Choi, Seok-Yong, E-mail: zebrafish@chonnam.ac.kr [Department of Biomedical Sciences, Chonnam National University Medical School, Gwangju (Korea, Republic of); School of Biological Sciences and Technology, Chonnam National University, Gwangju (Korea, Republic of)

    2013-06-15

    Highlights: •2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) is the most toxic anthropogenic substance ever identified. •Transgenic cyp1a reporter zebrafish reveals target tissues for TCDD. •The retinal bipolar cells, otic vesicle, lateral line, pancreas, cloaca and pectoral fin bud are novel targets in zebrafish for TCDD. •Our findings will further understanding of human health risks by TCDD. -- Abstract: 2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) is the unintentional byproduct of various industrial processes, is classified as human carcinogen and could disrupt reproductive, developmental and endocrine systems. Induction of cyp1a1 is used as an indicator of TCDD exposure. We sought to determine tissues that are vulnerable to TCDD toxicity using a transgenic zebrafish (Danio rerio) model. We inserted a nuclear enhanced green fluorescent protein gene (EGFP) into the start codon of a zebrafish cyp1a gene in a fosmid clone using DNA recombineering. The resulting recombineered fosmid was then used to generate cyp1a reporter zebrafish, embryos of which were exposed to TCDD. Expression pattern of EGFP in the reporter zebrafish mirrored that of endogenous cyp1a mRNA. In addition, exposure of the embryos to TCDD at as low as 10 pM for 72 h, which does not elicit morphological abnormalities of embryos, markedly increased GFP expression. Furthermore, the reporter embryos responded to other AhR ligands as well. Exposure of the embryos to TCDD revealed previously reported (the cardiovascular system, liver, pancreas, kidney, swim bladder and skin) and unreported target tissues (retinal bipolar cells, otic vesicle, lateral line, cloaca and pectoral fin bud) for TCDD. Transgenic cyp1a reporter zebrafish we have developed can further understanding of ecotoxicological relevance and human health risks by TCDD. In addition, they could be used to identify agonists of AhR and antidotes to TCDD toxicity.

  11. Architecture of cognitive flexibility revealed by lesion mapping.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbey, Aron K; Colom, Roberto; Grafman, Jordan

    2013-11-15

    Neuroscience has made remarkable progress in understanding the architecture of human intelligence, identifying a distributed network of brain structures that support goal-directed, intelligent behavior. However, the neural foundations of cognitive flexibility and adaptive aspects of intellectual function remain to be well characterized. Here, we report a human lesion study (n=149) that investigates the neural bases of key competencies of cognitive flexibility (i.e., mental flexibility and the fluent generation of new ideas) and systematically examine their contributions to a broad spectrum of cognitive and social processes, including psychometric intelligence (Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale), emotional intelligence (Mayer, Salovey, Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test), and personality (Neuroticism-Extraversion-Openness Personality Inventory). Latent variable modeling was applied to obtain error-free indices of each factor, followed by voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping to elucidate their neural substrates. Regression analyses revealed that latent scores for psychometric intelligence reliably predict latent scores for cognitive flexibility (adjusted R(2)=0.94). Lesion mapping results further indicated that these convergent processes depend on a shared network of frontal, temporal, and parietal regions, including white matter association tracts, which bind these areas into an integrated system. A targeted analysis of the unique variance explained by cognitive flexibility further revealed selective damage within the right superior temporal gyrus, a region known to support insight and the recognition of novel semantic relations. The observed findings motivate an integrative framework for understanding the neural foundations of adaptive behavior, suggesting that core elements of cognitive flexibility emerge from a distributed network of brain regions that support specific competencies for human intelligence.

  12. Next generation sequencing reveals the hidden diversity of zooplankton assemblages.

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    Penelope K Lindeque

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Zooplankton play an important role in our oceans, in biogeochemical cycling and providing a food source for commercially important fish larvae. However, difficulties in correctly identifying zooplankton hinder our understanding of their roles in marine ecosystem functioning, and can prevent detection of long term changes in their community structure. The advent of massively parallel next generation sequencing technology allows DNA sequence data to be recovered directly from whole community samples. Here we assess the ability of such sequencing to quantify richness and diversity of a mixed zooplankton assemblage from a productive time series site in the Western English Channel. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPLE FINDINGS: Plankton net hauls (200 µm were taken at the Western Channel Observatory station L4 in September 2010 and January 2011. These samples were analysed by microscopy and metagenetic analysis of the 18S nuclear small subunit ribosomal RNA gene using the 454 pyrosequencing platform. Following quality control a total of 419,041 sequences were obtained for all samples. The sequences clustered into 205 operational taxonomic units using a 97% similarity cut-off. Allocation of taxonomy by comparison with the National Centre for Biotechnology Information database identified 135 OTUs to species level, 11 to genus level and 1 to order, <2.5% of sequences were classified as unknowns. By comparison a skilled microscopic analyst was able to routinely enumerate only 58 taxonomic groups. CONCLUSIONS: Metagenetics reveals a previously hidden taxonomic richness, especially for Copepoda and hard-to-identify meroplankton such as Bivalvia, Gastropoda and Polychaeta. It also reveals rare species and parasites. We conclude that Next Generation Sequencing of 18S amplicons is a powerful tool for elucidating the true diversity and species richness of zooplankton communities. While this approach allows for broad diversity assessments of plankton it may

  13. Antibody protection reveals extended epitopes on the human TSH receptor.

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    Rauf Latif

    Full Text Available Stimulating, and some blocking, antibodies to the TSH receptor (TSHR have conformation-dependent epitopes reported to involve primarily the leucine rich repeat region of the ectodomain (LRD. However, successful crystallization of TSHR residues 22-260 has omitted important extracellular non-LRD residues including the hinge region which connects the TSHR ectodomain to the transmembrane domain and which is involved in ligand induced signal transduction. The aim of the present study, therefore, was to determine if TSHR antibodies (TSHR-Abs have non-LRD binding sites outside the LRD. To obtain this information we employed the method of epitope protection in which we first protected TSHR residues 1-412 with intact TSHR antibodies and then enzymatically digested the unprotected residues. Those peptides remaining were subsequently delineated by mass spectrometry. Fourteen out of 23 of the reported stimulating monoclonal TSHR-Ab crystal contact residues were protected by this technique which may reflect the higher binding energies of certain residues detected in this approach. Comparing the protected epitopes of two stimulating TSHR-Abs we found both similarities and differences but both antibodies also contacted the hinge region and the amino terminus of the TSHR following the signal peptide and encompassing cysteine box 1 which has previously been shown to be important for TSH binding and activation. A monoclonal blocking TSHR antibody revealed a similar pattern of binding regions but the residues that it contacted on the LRD were again distinct. These data demonstrated that conformationally dependent TSHR-Abs had epitopes not confined to the LRDs but also incorporated epitopes not revealed in the available crystal structure. Furthermore, the data also indicated that in addition to overlapping contact regions within the LRD, there are unique epitope patterns for each of the antibodies which may contribute to their functional heterogeneity.

  14. Ethiopian population dermatoglyphic study reveals linguistic stratification of diversity.

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    Seile Yohannes

    Full Text Available The manifestation of ethnic, blood type, & gender-wise population variations regarding Dermatoglyphic manifestations are of interest to assess intra-group diversity and differentiation. The present study reports on the analysis of qualitaive and quantitative finger Dermatoglyphic traits of 382 individuals cross-sectionally sampled from an administrative region of Ethiopia, consisting of five ethnic cohorts from the Afro-Asiatic & Nilo-Saharan affiliations. These Dermatoglyphic parameters were then applied in the assessment of diversity & differentiation, including Heterozygosity, Fixation, Panmixia, Wahlund's variance, Nei's measure of genetic diversity, and thumb & finger pattern genotypes, which were inturn used in homology inferences as summarized by a Neighbour-Joining tree constructed from Nei's standard genetic distance. Results revealed significant correlation between Dermatoglyphics & population parameters that were further found to be in concordance with the historical accounts of the ethnic groups. Such inductions as the ancient north-eastern presence and subsequent admixure events of the Oromos (PII= 15.01, the high diversity of the Amharas (H= 0.1978, F= 0.6453, and P= 0.4144, and the Nilo-Saharan origin of the Berta group (PII= 10.66 are evidences to this. The study has further tested the possibility of applying Dermatoglyphics in population genetic & anthropologic research, highlighting on the prospect of developing a method to trace back population origins & ancient movement patterns. Additionally, linguistic clustering was deemed significant for the Ethiopian population, coinciding with recent genome wide studies that have ascertained that linguistic clustering as to being more crucial than the geographical patterning in the Ethiopian context. Finally, Dermatoglyphic markers have been proven to be endowed with a strong potential as non-invasive preliminary tools applicable prior to genetic studies to analyze ethnically sub

  15. Ethiopian population dermatoglyphic study reveals linguistic stratification of diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yohannes, Seile; Bekele, Endashaw

    2015-01-01

    The manifestation of ethnic, blood type, & gender-wise population variations regarding Dermatoglyphic manifestations are of interest to assess intra-group diversity and differentiation. The present study reports on the analysis of qualitaive and quantitative finger Dermatoglyphic traits of 382 individuals cross-sectionally sampled from an administrative region of Ethiopia, consisting of five ethnic cohorts from the Afro-Asiatic & Nilo-Saharan affiliations. These Dermatoglyphic parameters were then applied in the assessment of diversity & differentiation, including Heterozygosity, Fixation, Panmixia, Wahlund's variance, Nei's measure of genetic diversity, and thumb & finger pattern genotypes, which were inturn used in homology inferences as summarized by a Neighbour-Joining tree constructed from Nei's standard genetic distance. Results revealed significant correlation between Dermatoglyphics & population parameters that were further found to be in concordance with the historical accounts of the ethnic groups. Such inductions as the ancient north-eastern presence and subsequent admixure events of the Oromos (PII= 15.01), the high diversity of the Amharas (H= 0.1978, F= 0.6453, and P= 0.4144), and the Nilo-Saharan origin of the Berta group (PII= 10.66) are evidences to this. The study has further tested the possibility of applying Dermatoglyphics in population genetic & anthropologic research, highlighting on the prospect of developing a method to trace back population origins & ancient movement patterns. Additionally, linguistic clustering was deemed significant for the Ethiopian population, coinciding with recent genome wide studies that have ascertained that linguistic clustering as to being more crucial than the geographical patterning in the Ethiopian context. Finally, Dermatoglyphic markers have been proven to be endowed with a strong potential as non-invasive preliminary tools applicable prior to genetic studies to analyze ethnically sub-divided populations and

  16. A Network Based Methodology to Reveal Patterns in Knowledge Transfer

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    Orlando López-Cruz

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper motivates, presents and demonstrates in use a methodology based in complex network analysis to support research aimed at identification of sources in the process of knowledge transfer at the interorganizational level. The importance of this methodology is that it states a unified model to reveal knowledge sharing patterns and to compare results from multiple researches on data from different periods of time and different sectors of the economy. This methodology does not address the underlying statistical processes. To do this, national statistics departments (NSD provide documents and tools at their websites. But this proposal provides a guide to model information inferences gathered from data processing revealing links between sources and recipients of knowledge being transferred and that the recipient detects as main source to new knowledge creation. Some national statistics departments set as objective for these surveys the characterization of innovation dynamics in firms and to analyze the use of public support instruments. From this characterization scholars conduct different researches. Measures of dimensions of the network composed by manufacturing firms and other organizations conform the base to inquiry the structure that emerges from taking ideas from other organizations to incept innovations. These two sets of data are actors of a two- mode-network. The link between two actors (network nodes, one acting as the source of the idea. The second one acting as the destination comes from organizations or events organized by organizations that “provide” ideas to other group of firms. The resulting demonstrated design satisfies the objective of being a methodological model to identify sources in knowledge transfer of knowledge effectively used in innovation.

  17. Human African trypanosomiasis in endemic focus of Abraka, Nigeria

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Clement Isaac; Igho Benjamin Igbinosa; Duncan Ogheneocovo Umukoro; Dafe Palmer Aitaikuru

    2010-01-01

    Objective:To investigated the prevalence of human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) , a neglected tropical disease caused by Trypanosoma brucei gambiens in an endemic focus of Nigeria, as it relates to age, sex and occupational differences. Methods:A total of 474 human subjects were screened using card agglutination test for trypanosomiasis kit. Positive samples were further investigated for parasite positivity in blood/serum and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Results:Of the 474 screened, 44(9.3%) were seropositive with seroprevalence of 22(9.6%) in Urhouka, 14(9.5%) in Umeghe and 8(7.9%) for Ugonu. The number of seropositives, observed for weakly, moderately and strongly positives for the three communities were 4, 7 and 11 in Urhouka, 4, 5 and 5 in Umeghe and 3, 2 and 3 in Ugonu respectively. Among the 16 volunteers with detected parasite in their blood , 4 of them were weakly positive, 5 of them were moderately positive and 7 of them strongly positive. 4 volunteers from Urhouka community were found parasites in their CSF and they were all strongly positive. The difference between the seroprevalence of males and females was not statistically significant (OR=1.14, 95%CI=0.37-3.4, P>0.05). The prevalence difference between age group 21-30 years old and the youngest and oldest age groups was statistically significant (OR=3.5, 95% CI=1.08-12.57, P0.05). It was observed that farmers had significantly higher prevalence of HAT infection as well as greater risk of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense infection than inhabitants with other occupations (OR=3.25, 95%CI=0.99-11.79, P<0.05). Conclusions:Human activities such as farming and visits to the river have been identified as major risk factors to HAT. Also the breakdown of HAT control program has been advanced for the rise in HAT in Abraka, an endemic focus in Nigeria.

  18. Orally Active and Selective Tubulin Inhibitors as Anti-Trypanosome Agents.

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    Vishal Nanavaty

    Full Text Available There is an urgent need to develop a safe, effective, orally active, and inexpensive therapy for African trypanosomiasis due to the drawbacks of current drugs. Selective tubulin inhibitors have the potential to be promising drug candidates for the treatment of this disease, which is based on the tubulin protein structural difference between mammalian and trypanosome cells. We propose to identify novel tubulin inhibitors from a compound library developed based on the lead compounds that selectively target trypanosomiasis.We used Trypanosoma brucei brucei as the parasite model, and human normal kidney cells and mouse microphage cells as the host model. Growth rates of both trypanosomes and mammalian cells were determined as a means to screen compounds that selectively inhibit the proliferation of parasites. Furthermore, we examined the cell cycle profile of the parasite and compared tubulin polymerization dynamics before and after the treatment using identified compounds. Last, in vivo anti-parasite activities of these compounds were determined in T. brucei-infected mice.Three compounds were selected that are 100 fold more effective against the growth of T. brucei cells than mammalian cells. These compounds caused cell cycle progression defects in T. brucei cells. Western analyses indicated that these compounds decreased tubulin polymerization in T. brucei cells. The in vivo investigation revealed that these compounds, when admitted orally, inhibited T. brucei cell proliferation in mouse blood. However, they were not potent enough to clear up the infection completely.These compounds are promising lead compounds as orally active agents for drug development of anti-trypanosome agents. A more detail structure activity relationship (SAR was summarized that will be used to guide future lead optimization to improve the selectivity and potency of the current compounds.

  19. An enzymatic atavist revealed in dual pathways for water activation.

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    Donghong Min

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available Inosine monophosphate dehydrogenase (IMPDH catalyzes an essential step in the biosynthesis of guanine nucleotides. This reaction involves two different chemical transformations, an NAD-linked redox reaction and a hydrolase reaction, that utilize mutually exclusive protein conformations with distinct catalytic residues. How did Nature construct such a complicated catalyst? Here we employ a "Wang-Landau" metadynamics algorithm in hybrid quantum mechanical/molecular mechanical (QM/MM simulations to investigate the mechanism of the hydrolase reaction. These simulations show that the lowest energy pathway utilizes Arg418 as the base that activates water, in remarkable agreement with previous experiments. Surprisingly, the simulations also reveal a second pathway for water activation involving a proton relay from Thr321 to Glu431. The energy barrier for the Thr321 pathway is similar to the barrier observed experimentally when Arg418 is removed by mutation. The Thr321 pathway dominates at low pH when Arg418 is protonated, which predicts that the substitution of Glu431 with Gln will shift the pH-rate profile to the right. This prediction is confirmed in subsequent experiments. Phylogenetic analysis suggests that the Thr321 pathway was present in the ancestral enzyme, but was lost when the eukaryotic lineage diverged. We propose that the primordial IMPDH utilized the Thr321 pathway exclusively, and that this mechanism became obsolete when the more sophisticated catalytic machinery of the Arg418 pathway was installed. Thus, our simulations provide an unanticipated window into the evolution of a complex enzyme.

  20. Phylogeny of the Botryosphaeriaceae reveals patterns of host association.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Wet, Juanita; Slippers, Bernard; Preisig, Oliver; Wingfield, Brenda D; Wingfield, Michael J

    2008-01-01

    Three anamorph genera of the Botryosphaeriaceae namely Diplodia, Lasiodiplodia and Dothiorella have typically dark, ovoid conidia with thick walls, and are consequently difficult to distinguish from each other. These genera are well-known pathogens of especially pine species. We generated a multiple gene genealogy to resolve the phylogenetic relationships of Botryosphaeriaceae with dark conidial anamorphs, and mapped host associations based on this phylogeny. The multiple gene genealogy separated Diplodia, Lasiodiplodia and Dothiorella and it revealed trends in the patterns of host association. The data set was expanded to include more lineages of the Botryosphaeriaceae, and included all isolates from different host species for which ITS sequence data are available. Results indicate that Diplodia species occur mainly on gymnosperms, with a few species on both gymnosperms and angiosperms. Lasiodiplodia species occur equally on both gymnosperms and angiosperms, Dothiorella species are restricted to angiosperms and Neofusicoccum species occur mainly on angiosperms with rare reports on Southern Hemisphere gymnosperms. Botryosphaeria species with Fusicoccum anamorphs occur mostly on angiosperms with rare reports on gymnosperms. Ancestral state reconstruction suggests that a putative ancestor of the Botryosphaeriaceae most likely evolved on the angiosperms. Another interesting observation was that both host generalist and specialist species were observed in all the lineages of the Botryosphaeriaceae, with little evidence of host associated co-evolution.

  1. Revealing structural effects: electrochemical reactions of butanols on platinum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez, José L; Souto, Ricardo M; Fernández-Mérida, Luis; Pastor, Elena

    2002-05-01

    Spectroelectrochemical studies on the reactivity of butanol isomers on Pt electrodes in perchloric acid medium led to the observation of structural effects that result from the different arrangements of atoms in the organic molecules. The use of differential electrochemical mass spectrometry (DEMS) to detect volatile products showed that all four isomers react on the electrode, though different product yields were observed for each compound. In spite of the differences in the electrochemical behaviour of the butanol isomers, a series of general processes accounts for the results obtained. The formation of strongly adsorbed residues by a dehydration process leading to the formation of a C=C bond was proposed for all isomers. Electroreduction of the adsorbates produces C(4) and C(3) alkanes, and the latter reveal the existence of a fragmentation process. The C(4) hydrocarbons can be formed by hydrogenation of these residues and by hydrogenolysis of alcohol molecules in the bulk solution which react at the electrode with adsorbed hydrogen. On the other hand, CO(2) is formed during electrooxidation of the adsorbed species. Partial-oxidation products containing a carbonyl group were detected from 0.2 M solutions of 1-butanol, isobutyl alcohol and sec-butyl alcohol. The tertiary alcohol tert-butyl alcohol only reacts in its adsorbed state.

  2. Revealing accretion onto black holes through X-ray reflection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plant, D.; Fender, R.; Ponti, G.; Munoz-Darias, T.; Coriat, M.

    2014-07-01

    Understanding the dynamics behind black hole state transitions and the changes they reflect in outbursts has become long-standing problem. The X-ray reflection spectrum describes the interaction between the hard X-ray source (the power-law continuum) and the cool accretion disc it illuminates, and thus permits an indirect view of how the two evolve. We present a systematic analysis of the reflection spectrum throughout three outbursts (500+ RXTE observations) of the black hole binary GX 339-4, representing the largest study applying a self-consistent treatment of reflection to date. Particular attention is payed to the coincident evolution of the power-law and reflection, which can be used to determine the accretion geometry. The hard state is found to be distinctly reflection weak, however the ratio of reflection to power-law gradually increases as the source luminosity rises. In contrast the reflection is found dominate the power-law throughout most of the soft state, with increasing supremacy as the source decays. Using results from archival and AO-12 observations of GX 339-4 with XMM-Newton we reveal the dynamics driving this evolution and the nature of accretion onto black holes in outburst.

  3. Molecular Mechanisms Regulating Hepcidin Revealed by Hepcidin Disorders

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    Clara Camaschella

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Iron is essential for human life, but toxic if present in excess. To avoid iron overload and maintain iron homeostasis, all cells are able to regulate their iron content through the post-transcriptional control of iron genes operated by the cytosolic iron regulatory proteins that interact with iron responsive elements on iron gene mRNA. At the systemic level, iron homeostasis is regulated by the liver peptide hepcidin. Disruption of these regulatory loops leads to genetic diseases characterized by iron deficiency (iron-refractory iron-deficiency anemia or iron overload (hemochromatosis. Alterations of the same systems are also found in acquired disorders, such as iron-loading anemias characterized by ineffective erythropoiesis and anemia of chronic diseases (ACD associated with common inflammatory conditions. In ACD, iron is present in the body, but maldistributed, being deficient for erythropoiesis, but sequestered in macrophages. Studies of the hepcidin regulation by iron and inflammatory cytokines are revealing new pathways that might become targets of new therapeutic intervention in iron disorders.

  4. Color-shape associations revealed with implicit association tests.

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    Na Chen

    Full Text Available Kandinsky proposed a correspondence theory that suggests associations between specific colors and shapes (i.e., circle-blue, square-red, triangle-yellow. Makin and Wuerger tested the theory using the Implicit Association Test (IAT and did not find clear evidence for Kandinsky's color-shape associations among British participants. In the present study, we first replicated the previous study among Japanese participants and found similar results to those of Makin and Wuerger, showing little support for Kandinsky's theory. In the subsequent experiment, we tested another set of color-shape associations that had been revealed by using an explicit matching method (circle-red, square-blue, triangle-yellow in Japanese participants. The IAT tests showed that response times were significantly faster when circle-red, square-blue, and triangle-yellow combinations were mapped onto the same response key, rather than different key combinations, indicating that these color-shape combinations were encoded. These results provide the first empirical evidence that color-shape associations can be measured by indirect behavioral methods, and in particular, Japanese people's color-shape associations (circle-red, square-blue, triangle-yellow can be observed by both direct and indirect experimental methods.

  5. Color-shape associations revealed with implicit association tests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Na; Tanaka, Kanji; Watanabe, Katsumi

    2015-01-01

    Kandinsky proposed a correspondence theory that suggests associations between specific colors and shapes (i.e., circle-blue, square-red, triangle-yellow). Makin and Wuerger tested the theory using the Implicit Association Test (IAT) and did not find clear evidence for Kandinsky's color-shape associations among British participants. In the present study, we first replicated the previous study among Japanese participants and found similar results to those of Makin and Wuerger, showing little support for Kandinsky's theory. In the subsequent experiment, we tested another set of color-shape associations that had been revealed by using an explicit matching method (circle-red, square-blue, triangle-yellow) in Japanese participants. The IAT tests showed that response times were significantly faster when circle-red, square-blue, and triangle-yellow combinations were mapped onto the same response key, rather than different key combinations, indicating that these color-shape combinations were encoded. These results provide the first empirical evidence that color-shape associations can be measured by indirect behavioral methods, and in particular, Japanese people's color-shape associations (circle-red, square-blue, triangle-yellow) can be observed by both direct and indirect experimental methods.

  6. Impaired consciousness revealing a cerebral amebiasis in an immunocompetent adult

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    Hanane Ezzouine

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Amebiasis is a parasitic infection with manifestations, mainly digestives. It is rarely described extra-gastrointestinal locations including the brain. We report the case of a patient aged 42, made five months earlier for an appendectomy, and was admitted to the ICU after a convalescent stable uncomplicated. At admission, he was 12/15 in Glasgow and had a right hemiplegia. Brain CT revealed a discrete diffuse hypodensities perilesional edema. An abdominal ultrasound found an aspect for multiple hepatic abscesses. Abscess puncture was performed, which was not conclusive, and no seed could be identified. On Ultrasound, no cardiac abnormalities were found, and no endocarditis was present. And since the appearance macroscopic (chocolate-brown, amebic serology is performed and has been highly positive. The therapeutic management included an intubation and ventilation as well as a tri-antibiotic-based ceftriaxon, metronidazol and gentamycin. Confirmation of amebiasis required high doses of metronidazol for an extended period. The replay of the play was an appendectomy for an amebome. Evolution was favorable. Amebiasis can have extraintestinal locations, issues to think about including the cerebral forms.

  7. Germplasm of breeding Pseudosciaena crocea as revealed by microsatellite markers

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHANG Yumei; DING Lei; LI Mingyun; XUE Liangyi; LIANG Liqun; HE Jianguo; LEI Qingquan

    2008-01-01

    The germplasm of breeding large yellow croaker(Pseudosciaena crocea Richardson)was revealed using 12 microsatellite markers.The results showed that the genetic diversities were on a mediated level in the bred Daiqu and Min-Yue stocks and two hybrid groups,as represented by 4.83 of the mean number of alleles and 0.561 of the average observed heterozygosity.The value of pair-wise differentiation coefficient(Fst)was only 13.1% between Daiqu and Min-Yue stocks,demonstrating the low level of differcn-tiation and a close relationship.However,STRUCTURE simulations and phylogenetie tree based on the UPGMA method supported that they are geographically different populations of the same species with distinct genetic structures.Examinations of individual ad-mixture showed that Min-Yue stock had been contaminated by alien individuals.Moreover,the genetic structures of the two hybridgroups resembled those of their parents,especially affected more by their female parents.Finally,the values of average observed beterozygasity between parents and their ascendants were compared and tested,as a result of no detectable differences(P>0.05).

  8. Subfield profitability analysis reveals an economic case for cropland diversification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brandes, E.; McNunn, G. S.; Schulte, L. A.; Bonner, I. J.; Muth, D. J.; Babcock, B. A.; Sharma, B.; Heaton, E. A.

    2016-01-01

    Public agencies and private enterprises increasingly desire to achieve ecosystem service outcomes in agricultural systems, but are limited by perceived conflicts between economic and ecosystem service goals and a lack of tools enabling effective operational management. Here we use Iowa—an agriculturally homogeneous state representative of the Maize Belt—to demonstrate an economic rationale for cropland diversification at the subfield scale. We used a novel computational framework that integrates disparate but publicly available data to map ˜3.3 million unique potential management polygons (9.3 Mha) and reveal subfield opportunities to increase overall field profitability. We analyzed subfield profitability for maize/soybean fields during 2010-2013—four of the most profitable years in recent history—and projected results for 2015. While cropland operating at a loss of US 250 ha-1 or more was negligible between 2010 and 2013 at 18 000-190 000 ha (profitable areas, incorporating conservation management that breaks even (e.g., planting low-input perennials), into low-yielding portions of fields could increase overall cropland profitability by 80%. This approach is applicable to the broader region and differs substantially from the status quo of ‘top-down’ land management for conservation by harnessing private interest to align profitability with the production of ecosystem services.

  9. Titan's post-equinox circulation revealed using chemical tracers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teanby, N. A.; Irwin, P. G. J.; Nixon, C. A.; de Kok, R.; Vinatier, S.; Coustenis, A.; Calcutt, S. B.

    2012-04-01

    Titan’s atmosphere harbors a vast array of minor chemical compounds produced by its active photochemical cycle - including many hydrocarbon and nitrile species. These species have a wide range of lifetimes and can be used as chemical tracers of atmospheric motion on a variety of time scales (Teanby et al 2008). Therefore, by measuring how the abundances of these species vary during Cassini’s mission so far, it is possible to probe changes in Titan’s general circulation. Here we use eight years of Cassini Composite InfraRed Spectrometer (CIRS) data to study how the atmospheric circulation behaves during the equinox and post-equinox periods. As northern winter progressed to northern spring, significant changes in the distribution of trace gases were observed. These include an increase in trace gas abundance at the north pole and northward migration of the vortex boundary. The implications of the observed changed will be discussed - including a possible interpretation of the recent changes as a weakening of the north polar vortex accompanied by a reduction in cross-vortex mixing. References: Teanby, N. A., et al. (2008) "Titan's winter polar vortex structure revealed by chemical tracers". JGR-Planets, Vol. 113, E12003. Figure showing the observed variations in temperature and composition from the mission so far.

  10. mTOR-sensitive translation: Cleared fog reveals more trees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masvidal, Laia; Huela, Laura; Furic, Luc; Topisirovic, Ivan; Larsson, Ola

    2017-02-10

    Translation is fundamental for many biological processes as it enables cells to rapidly respond to stimuli without requiring de novo mRNA synthesis. The mammalian/mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR) is a key regulator of translation. Although mTOR affects global protein synthesis, translation of a subset of mRNAs appears to be exceptionally sensitive to changes in mTOR activity. Recent efforts to catalog these mTOR-sensitive mRNAs resulted in conflicting results. Whereas ribosome-profiling almost exclusively identified 5'-terminal oligopyrimidine (TOP) mRNAs as mTOR-sensitive, polysome-profiling suggested that mTOR also regulates translation of non-TOP mRNAs. This inconsistency was explained by analytical and technical biases limiting the efficiency of ribosome-profiling in detecting mRNAs showing differential translation. Moreover, genome-wide characterization of 5'UTRs of non-TOP mTOR-sensitive mRNAs revealed two subsets of transcripts which differ in their requirement for translation initiation factors and biological functions. We summarize these recent advances and their impact on the understanding of mTOR-sensitive translation.

  11. Enzyme kinetics: the whole picture reveals hidden meanings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinto, Maria F; Estevinho, Berta N; Crespo, Rosa; Rocha, Fernando A; Damas, Ana M; Martins, Pedro M

    2015-06-01

    The methodology adopted by Michaelis and Menten in 1913 is still routinely used to characterize the catalytic power and selectivity of enzymes. These kinetic measurements must be performed soon after the purified enzyme is mixed with a large excess of substrate. Other time scales and solution compositions are no less physiologically relevant, but fall outside the range of applicability of the classical formalism. Here we show that the complete picture of an enzyme's mode of function is critically obscured by the limited scope of conventional kinetic analysis, even in the simplest case of a single active site without inhibition. This picture is now unveiled in a mathematically closed form that remains valid over the reaction time for all combinations of enzyme/substrate concentrations and rate constants. Algebraic simplicity is maintained in the new formalism when stationary reaction phases are considered. By achieving this century-old objective, the otherwise hidden role of the reversible binding step is revealed and atypical kinetic profiles are explained. Most singular kinetic behaviors are identified in a critical region of conditions that coincide with typical cell conditions. Because it is not covered by the Michaelis-Menten model, the critical region has been missed until now by low- and high-throughput screenings of new drugs. New possibilities are therefore raised for novel and once-promising inhibitors to therapeutically target enzymes.

  12. Revealing the structure of the world airline network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verma, T; Araújo, N A M; Herrmann, H J

    2014-07-09

    Resilience of most critical infrastructures against failure of elements that appear insignificant is usually taken for granted. The World Airline Network (WAN) is an infrastructure that reduces the geographical gap between societies, both small and large, and brings forth economic gains. With the extensive use of a publicly maintained data set that contains information about airports and alternative connections between these airports, we empirically reveal that the WAN is a redundant and resilient network for long distance air travel, but otherwise breaks down completely due to removal of short and apparently insignificant connections. These short range connections with moderate number of passengers and alternate flights are the connections that keep remote parts of the world accessible. It is surprising, insofar as there exists a highly resilient and strongly connected core consisting of a small fraction of airports (around 2.3%) together with an extremely fragile star-like periphery. Yet, in spite of their relevance, more than 90% of the world airports are still interconnected upon removal of this core. With standard and unconventional removal measures we compare both empirical and topological perceptions for the fragmentation of the world. We identify how the WAN is organized into different classes of clusters based on the physical proximity of airports and analyze the consequence of this fragmentation.

  13. Phylogenies reveal predictive power of traditional medicine in bioprospecting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saslis-Lagoudakis, C Haris; Savolainen, Vincent; Williamson, Elizabeth M; Forest, Félix; Wagstaff, Steven J; Baral, Sushim R; Watson, Mark F; Pendry, Colin A; Hawkins, Julie A

    2012-09-25

    There is controversy about whether traditional medicine can guide drug discovery, and investment in bioprospecting informed by ethnobotanical data has fluctuated. One view is that traditionally used medicinal plants are not necessarily efficacious and there are no robust methods for distinguishing those which are most likely to be bioactive when selecting species for further testing. Here, we reconstruct a genus-level molecular phylogenetic tree representing the 20,000 species found in the floras of three disparate biodiversity hotspots: Nepal, New Zealand, and the Cape of South Africa. Borrowing phylogenetic methods from community ecology, we reveal significant clustering of the 1,500 traditionally used species, and provide a direct measure of the relatedness of the three medicinal floras. We demonstrate shared phylogenetic patterns across the floras: related plants from these regions are used to treat medical conditions in the same therapeutic areas. This finding strongly indicates independent discovery of plant efficacy, an interpretation corroborated by the presence of a significantly greater proportion of known bioactive species in these plant groups than in random samples. We conclude that phylogenetic cross-cultural comparisons can focus screening efforts on a subset of traditionally used plants that are richer in bioactive compounds, and could revitalize the use of traditional knowledge in bioprospecting.

  14. Conceptual recurrence plots: revealing patterns in human discourse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angus, Daniel; Smith, Andrew; Wiles, Janet

    2012-06-01

    Human discourse contains a rich mixture of conceptual information. Visualization of the global and local patterns within this data stream is a complex and challenging problem. Recurrence plots are an information visualization technique that can reveal trends and features in complex time series data. The recurrence plot technique works by measuring the similarity of points in a time series to all other points in the same time series and plotting the results in two dimensions. Previous studies have applied recurrence plotting techniques to textual data; however, these approaches plot recurrence using term-based similarity rather than conceptual similarity of the text. We introduce conceptual recurrence plots, which use a model of language to measure similarity between pairs of text utterances, and the similarity of all utterances is measured and displayed. In this paper, we explore how the descriptive power of the recurrence plotting technique can be used to discover patterns of interaction across a series of conversation transcripts. The results suggest that the conceptual recurrence plotting technique is a useful tool for exploring the structure of human discourse.

  15. Immunoprofiling of rice root cortex reveals two cortical subdomains

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sophia eHenry

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The formation and differentiation of aerenchyma, i.e., air-containing cavities that are critical for flooding tolerance, take place exclusively in the cortex. The understanding of development and differentiation of the cortex is thus an important issue; however, studies on this tissue are limited, partly because of the lack of available molecular tools. We screened a commercially available library of cell wall antibodies to identify markers of cortical tissue in rice roots. Out of the 174 antibodies screened, eight were cortex-specific. Our analysis revealed that two types of cortical tissues are present in rice root seedlings. We named these cell layers 'inner' and 'outer' based on their location relative to the stele. We then used the antibodies to clarify cell identity in lateral roots. Without these markers, previous studies could not distinguish between the cortex and sclerenchyma in small lateral roots. By immunostaining lateral root sections, we showed that the internal ground tissue in small lateral roots has outer cortical identity.

  16. Fine-scaled human genetic structure revealed by SNP microarrays.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xing, Jinchuan; Watkins, W Scott; Witherspoon, David J; Zhang, Yuhua; Guthery, Stephen L; Thara, Rangaswamy; Mowry, Bryan J; Bulayeva, Kazima; Weiss, Robert B; Jorde, Lynn B

    2009-05-01

    We report an analysis of more than 240,000 loci genotyped using the Affymetrix SNP microarray in 554 individuals from 27 worldwide populations in Africa, Asia, and Europe. To provide a more extensive and complete sampling of human genetic variation, we have included caste and tribal samples from two states in South India, Daghestanis from eastern Europe, and the Iban from Malaysia. Consistent with observations made by Charles Darwin, our results highlight shared variation among human populations and demonstrate that much genetic variation is geographically continuous. At the same time, principal components analyses reveal discernible genetic differentiation among almost all identified populations in our sample, and in most cases, individuals can be clearly assigned to defined populations on the basis of SNP genotypes. All individuals are accurately classified into continental groups using a model-based clustering algorithm, but between closely related populations, genetic and self-classifications conflict for some individuals. The 250K data permitted high-level resolution of genetic variation among Indian caste and tribal populations and between highland and lowland Daghestani populations. In particular, upper-caste individuals from Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh form one defined group, lower-caste individuals from these two states form another, and the tribal Irula samples form a third. Our results emphasize the correlation of genetic and geographic distances and highlight other elements, including social factors that have contributed to population structure.

  17. Effective connectivity reveals strategy differences in an expert calculator.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ludovico Minati

    Full Text Available Mathematical reasoning is a core component of cognition and the study of experts defines the upper limits of human cognitive abilities, which is why we are fascinated by peak performers, such as chess masters and mental calculators. Here, we investigated the neural bases of calendrical skills, i.e. the ability to rapidly identify the weekday of a particular date, in a gifted mental calculator who does not fall in the autistic spectrum, using functional MRI. Graph-based mapping of effective connectivity, but not univariate analysis, revealed distinct anatomical location of "cortical hubs" supporting the processing of well-practiced close dates and less-practiced remote dates: the former engaged predominantly occipital and medial temporal areas, whereas the latter were associated mainly with prefrontal, orbitofrontal and anterior cingulate connectivity. These results point to the effect of extensive practice on the development of expertise and long term working memory, and demonstrate the role of frontal networks in supporting performance on less practiced calculations, which incur additional processing demands. Through the example of calendrical skills, our results demonstrate that the ability to perform complex calculations is initially supported by extensive attentional and strategic resources, which, as expertise develops, are gradually replaced by access to long term working memory for familiar material.

  18. A genome wide dosage suppressor network reveals genomic robustness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patra, Biranchi; Kon, Yoshiko; Yadav, Gitanjali; Sevold, Anthony W.; Frumkin, Jesse P.; Vallabhajosyula, Ravishankar R.; Hintze, Arend; Østman, Bjørn; Schossau, Jory; Bhan, Ashish; Marzolf, Bruz; Tamashiro, Jenna K.; Kaur, Amardeep; Baliga, Nitin S.; Grayhack, Elizabeth J.; Adami, Christoph; Galas, David J.; Raval, Alpan; Phizicky, Eric M.; Ray, Animesh

    2017-01-01

    Genomic robustness is the extent to which an organism has evolved to withstand the effects of deleterious mutations. We explored the extent of genomic robustness in budding yeast by genome wide dosage suppressor analysis of 53 conditional lethal mutations in cell division cycle and RNA synthesis related genes, revealing 660 suppressor interactions of which 642 are novel. This collection has several distinctive features, including high co-occurrence of mutant-suppressor pairs within protein modules, highly correlated functions between the pairs and higher diversity of functions among the co-suppressors than previously observed. Dosage suppression of essential genes encoding RNA polymerase subunits and chromosome cohesion complex suggests a surprising degree of functional plasticity of macromolecular complexes, and the existence of numerous degenerate pathways for circumventing the effects of potentially lethal mutations. These results imply that organisms and cancer are likely able to exploit the genomic robustness properties, due the persistence of cryptic gene and pathway functions, to generate variation and adapt to selective pressures. PMID:27899637

  19. Revealing the hidden structural phases of FeRh

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Jinwoong; Ramesh, R.; Kioussis, Nicholas

    2016-11-01

    Ab initio electronic structure calculations reveal that tetragonal distortion has a dramatic effect on the relative stability of the various magnetic structures (C-, A-, G-, A'-AFM, and FM) of FeRh giving rise to a wide range of novel stable/metastable structures and magnetic phase transitions between these states. We predict that the cubic G-AFM structure, which was believed thus far to be the ground state, is metastable and that the tetragonally expanded G-AFM is the stable structure. The low energy barrier separating these states suggests phase coexistence at room temperature. We propose an A'-AFM phase to be the global ground state among all magnetic phases which arises from the strain-induced tuning of the exchange interactions. The results elucidate the underlying mechanism for the recent experimental findings of electric-field control of magnetic phase transition driven via tetragonal strain. The magnetic phase transitions open interesting prospects for exploiting strain engineering for the next-generation memory devices.

  20. Perceptual rivalry: reflexes reveal the gradual nature of visual awareness.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marnix Naber

    Full Text Available Rivalry is a common tool to probe visual awareness: a constant physical stimulus evokes multiple, distinct perceptual interpretations ("percepts" that alternate over time. Percepts are typically described as mutually exclusive, suggesting that a discrete (all-or-none process underlies changes in visual awareness. Here we follow two strategies to address whether rivalry is an all-or-none process: first, we introduce two reflexes as objective measures of rivalry, pupil dilation and optokinetic nystagmus (OKN; second, we use a continuous input device (analog joystick to allow observers a gradual subjective report. We find that the "reflexes" reflect the percept rather than the physical stimulus. Both reflexes show a gradual dependence on the time relative to perceptual transitions. Similarly, observers' joystick deflections, which are highly correlated with the reflex measures, indicate gradual transitions. Physically simulating wave-like transitions between percepts suggest piece-meal rivalry (i.e., different regions of space belonging to distinct percepts as one possible explanation for the gradual transitions. Furthermore, the reflexes show that dominance durations depend on whether or not the percept is actively reported. In addition, reflexes respond to transitions with shorter latencies than the subjective report and show an abundance of short dominance durations. This failure to report fast changes in dominance may result from limited access of introspection to rivalry dynamics. In sum, reflexes reveal that rivalry is a gradual process, rivalry's dynamics is modulated by the required action (response mode, and that rapid transitions in perceptual dominance can slip away from awareness.

  1. Monkey steering responses reveal rapid visual-motor feedback.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seth W Egger

    Full Text Available The neural mechanisms underlying primate locomotion are largely unknown. While behavioral and theoretical work has provided a number of ideas of how navigation is controlled, progress will require direct physiolgical tests of the underlying mechanisms. In turn, this will require development of appropriate animal models. We trained three monkeys to track a moving visual target in a simple virtual environment, using a joystick to control their direction. The monkeys learned to quickly and accurately turn to the target, and their steering behavior was quite stereotyped and reliable. Monkeys typically responded to abrupt steps of target direction with a biphasic steering movement, exhibiting modest but transient overshoot. Response latencies averaged approximately 300 ms, and monkeys were typically back on target after about 1 s. We also exploited the variability of responses about the mean to explore the time-course of correlation between target direction and steering response. This analysis revealed a broad peak of correlation spanning approximately 400 ms in the recent past, during which steering errors provoke a compensatory response. This suggests a continuous, visual-motor loop controls steering behavior, even during the epoch surrounding transient inputs. Many results from the human literature also suggest that steering is controlled by such a closed loop. The similarity of our results to those in humans suggests the monkey is a very good animal model for human visually guided steering.

  2. Kinase/phosphatase overexpression reveals pathways regulating hippocampal neuron morphology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchser, William J; Slepak, Tatiana I; Gutierrez-Arenas, Omar; Bixby, John L; Lemmon, Vance P

    2010-07-01

    Development and regeneration of the nervous system requires the precise formation of axons and dendrites. Kinases and phosphatases are pervasive regulators of cellular function and have been implicated in controlling axodendritic development and regeneration. We undertook a gain-of-function analysis to determine the functions of kinases and phosphatases in the regulation of neuron morphology. Over 300 kinases and 124 esterases and phosphatases were studied by high-content analysis of rat hippocampal neurons. Proteins previously implicated in neurite growth, such as ERK1, GSK3, EphA8, FGFR, PI3K, PKC, p38, and PP1a, were confirmed to have effects in our functional assays. We also identified novel positive and negative neurite growth regulators. These include neuronal-developmentally regulated kinases such as the activin receptor, interferon regulatory factor 6 (IRF6) and neural leucine-rich repeat 1 (LRRN1). The protein kinase N2 (PKN2) and choline kinase alpha (CHKA) kinases, and the phosphatases PPEF2 and SMPD1, have little or no established functions in neuronal function, but were sufficient to promote neurite growth. In addition, pathway analysis revealed that members of signaling pathways involved in cancer progression and axis formation enhanced neurite outgrowth, whereas cytokine-related pathways significantly inhibited neurite formation.

  3. Asteroseismology revealing trapped modes in KIC 10553698A

    CERN Document Server

    Østensen, R H; Reed, M D; Baran, A S; Nemeth, P; Kiaeerad, F

    2014-01-01

    The subdwarf-B pulsator, KIC 10553698A, is one of 16 such objects observed with one-minute sampling for most of the duration of the Kepler Mission. Like most of these stars, it displays a rich g-mode pulsation spectrum with several clear multiplets that maintain regular frequency splitting. We identify these pulsation modes as components of rotationally split multiplets in a star rotating with a period of about 41 d. From 162 clearly significant periodicities, we are able to identify 156 as likely components of l=1 or l=2 multiplets. For the first time we are able to detect l=1 modes that interpose in the asymptotic period sequences and that provide a clear indication of mode trapping in a stratified envelope, as predicted by theoretical models. A clear signal is also present in the Kepler photometry at 3.387 d. Spectroscopic observations reveal a radial-velocity amplitude of 64.8 km/s. We find that the radial-velocity variations and the photometric signal have phase and amplitude that are perfectly consisten...

  4. Next generation sequencing in sporadic retinoblastoma patients reveals somatic mosaicism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amitrano, Sara; Marozza, Annabella; Somma, Serena; Imperatore, Valentina; Hadjistilianou, Theodora; De Francesco, Sonia; Toti, Paolo; Galimberti, Daniela; Meloni, Ilaria; Cetta, Francesco; Piu, Pietro; Di Marco, Chiara; Dosa, Laura; Lo Rizzo, Caterina; Carignani, Giulia; Mencarelli, Maria Antonietta; Mari, Francesca; Renieri, Alessandra; Ariani, Francesca

    2015-11-01

    In about 50% of sporadic cases of retinoblastoma, no constitutive RB1 mutations are detected by conventional methods. However, recent research suggests that, at least in some of these cases, there is somatic mosaicism with respect to RB1 normal and mutant alleles. The increased availability of next generation sequencing improves our ability to detect the exact percentage of patients with mosaicism. Using this technology, we re-tested a series of 40 patients with sporadic retinoblastoma: 10 of them had been previously classified as constitutional heterozygotes, whereas in 30 no RB1 mutations had been found in lymphocytes. In 3 of these 30 patients, we have now identified low-level mosaic variants, varying in frequency between 8 and 24%. In 7 out of the 10 cases previously classified as heterozygous from testing blood cells, we were able to test additional tissues (ocular tissues, urine and/or oral mucosa): in three of them, next generation sequencing has revealed mosaicism. Present results thus confirm that a significant fraction (6/40; 15%) of sporadic retinoblastoma cases are due to postzygotic events and that deep sequencing is an efficient method to unambiguously distinguish mosaics. Re-testing of retinoblastoma patients through next generation sequencing can thus provide new information that may have important implications with respect to genetic counseling and family care.

  5. Resting-state brain organization revealed by functional covariance networks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhiqiang Zhang

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Brain network studies using techniques of intrinsic connectivity network based on fMRI time series (TS-ICN and structural covariance network (SCN have mapped out functional and structural organization of human brain at respective time scales. However, there lacks a meso-time-scale network to bridge the ICN and SCN and get insights of brain functional organization. METHODOLOGY AND PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We proposed a functional covariance network (FCN method by measuring the covariance of amplitude of low-frequency fluctuations (ALFF in BOLD signals across subjects, and compared the patterns of ALFF-FCNs with the TS-ICNs and SCNs by mapping the brain networks of default network, task-positive network and sensory networks. We demonstrated large overlap among FCNs, ICNs and SCNs and modular nature in FCNs and ICNs by using conjunctional analysis. Most interestingly, FCN analysis showed a network dichotomy consisting of anti-correlated high-level cognitive system and low-level perceptive system, which is a novel finding different from the ICN dichotomy consisting of the default-mode network and the task-positive network. CONCLUSION: The current study proposed an ALFF-FCN approach to measure the interregional correlation of brain activity responding to short periods of state, and revealed novel organization patterns of resting-state brain activity from an intermediate time scale.

  6. Diagnostic phylogenetics reveals a new Porcine circovirus 2 cluster.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davies, Brendan; Wang, Xiong; Dvorak, Cheryl M T; Marthaler, Douglas; Murtaugh, Michael P

    2016-06-02

    Porcine circovirus 2 (PCV2) was prevalent in swine in the United States before PCV2-associated disease (PCVAD) appeared in 2006. Limited nucleotide sequencing of open reading frame 2 (ORF2) encoding capsid, the only structural protein, revealed the presence of two genotypes, PCV2a and PCV2b. Later, PCV2c and mutant PCV2b, or PCV2d, were also described. However, extensive PCV2 ORF2 sequence databases in veterinary diagnostic laboratories have not been analyzed systematically to determine the genetic diversity of field isolates. Here, we interrogated >1100 PCV2 ORF2 nucleotide sequences to assess population diversity and genetic variation. We detected a novel PCV2 genotype that is substantially different, primarily in ORF2, from all known PCV2. Notably, ORF2 contains a unique carboxyl terminal amino acid insertion resulting in a 238 amino acid ORF2. All other PCV2 ORF2 proteins are 233 or 234 aa in length. Phylogenetic analysis indicates that it is more ancient than other PCV2 genotypes. The findings demonstrate the value of analyzing routine diagnostic laboratory sequence databases in population genetic analyses of animal pathogens.

  7. Metabolomics reveals insect metabolic responses associated with fungal infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Yong-Jiang; Luo, Feifei; Gao, Qiang; Shang, Yanfang; Wang, Chengshu

    2015-06-01

    The interactions between insects and pathogenic fungi are complex. We employed metabolomic techniques to profile insect metabolic dynamics upon infection by the pathogenic fungus Beauveria bassiana. Silkworm larvae were infected with fungal spores and microscopic observations demonstrated that the exhaustion of insect hemocytes was coupled with fungal propagation in the insect body cavity. Metabolomic analyses revealed that fungal infection could significantly alter insect energy and nutrient metabolisms as well as the immune defense responses, including the upregulation of carbohydrates, amino acids, fatty acids, and lipids, but the downregulation of eicosanoids and amines. The insect antifeedant effect of the fungal infection was evident with the reduced level of maclurin (a component of mulberry leaves) in infected insects but elevated accumulations in control insects. Insecticidal and cytotoxic mycotoxins like oosporein and beauveriolides were also detected in insects at the later stages of infection. Taken together, the metabolomics data suggest that insect immune responses are energy-cost reactions and the strategies of nutrient deprivation, inhibition of host immune responses, and toxin production would be jointly employed by the fungus to kill insects. The data obtained in this study will facilitate future functional studies of genes and pathways associated with insect-fungus interactions.

  8. Revealing Hanny's Voorwerp: radio observations of IC 2497

    CERN Document Server

    Jozsa, G I G; Oosterloo, T A; Rampadarath, H; Paragi, Z; van Arkel, H; Lintott, C; Keel, W C; Schawinski, K; Edmondson, E

    2009-01-01

    We present multi-wavelength radio observations in the direction of the spiral galaxy IC 2497 and the neighbouring emission nebula known as "Hanny's Voorwerp". Our WSRT continuum observations at 1.4 GHz and 4.9 GHz, reveal the presence of extended emission at the position of the nebulosity, although the bulk of the emission remains unresolved at the centre of the galaxy. e-VLBI 1.65 GHz observations show that on the milliarcsecond-scale a faint central compact source is present in IC 2497 with a brightness temperature in excess of 4E5 K. With the WSRT, we detect a large reservoir of neutral hydrogen in the proximity of IC 2497. One cloud complex with a total mass of 5.6E9 Msol to the South of IC 2497, encompasses Hanny's Voorwerp. Another cloud complex is located at the position of a small galaxy group ~100 kpc to the West of IC 2497 with a mass of 2.9E9 Msol. Our data hint at a physical connection between both complexes. We also detect HI in absorption against the central continuum source of IC 2497. Our obse...

  9. Comparative genomics reveals mobile pathogenicity chromosomes in Fusarium

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ma, Li Jun; van der Does, H. C.; Borkovich, Katherine A.; Coleman, Jeffrey J.; Daboussi, Marie-Jose; Di Pietro, Antonio; Dufresne, Marie; Freitag, Michael; Grabherr, Manfred; Henrissat, Bernard; Houterman, Petra M.; Kang, Seogchan; Shim, Won-Bo; Wolochuk, Charles; Xie, Xiaohui; Xu, Jin Rong; Antoniw, John; Baker, Scott E.; Bluhm, Burton H.; Breakspear, Andrew; Brown, Daren W.; Butchko, Robert A.; Chapman, Sinead; Coulson, Richard; Coutinho, Pedro M.; Danchin, Etienne G.; Diener, Andrew; Gale, Liane R.; Gardiner, Donald; Goff, Steven; Hammond-Kossack, Kim; Hilburn, Karen; Hua-Van, Aurelie; Jonkers, Wilfried; Kazan, Kemal; Kodira, Chinnappa D.; Koehrsen, Michael; Kumar, Lokesh; Lee, Yong Hwan; Li, Liande; Manners, John M.; Miranda-Saavedra, Diego; Mukherjee, Mala; Park, Gyungsoon; Park, Jongsun; Park, Sook Young; Proctor, Robert H.; Regev, Aviv; Ruiz-Roldan, M. C.; Sain, Divya; Sakthikumar, Sharadha; Sykes, Sean; Schwartz, David C.; Turgeon, Barbara G.; Wapinski, Ilan; Yoder, Olen; Young, Sarah; Zeng, Qiandong; Zhou, Shiguo; Galagan, James; Cuomo, Christina A.; Kistler, H. Corby; Rep, Martijn

    2010-03-18

    Fusarium species are among the most important phytopathogenic and toxigenic fungi, having significant impact on crop production and animal health. Distinctively, members of the F. oxysporum species complex exhibit wide host range but discontinuously distributed host specificity, reflecting remarkable genetic adaptability. To understand the molecular underpinnings of diverse phenotypic traits and their evolution in Fusarium, we compared the genomes of three economically important and phylogenetically related, yet phenotypically diverse plant-pathogenic species, F. graminearum, F. verticillioides and F. oxysporum f. sp. lycopersici. Our analysis revealed greatly expanded lineage-specific (LS) genomic regions in F. oxysporum that include four entire chromosomes, accounting for more than one-quarter of the genome. LS regions are rich in transposons and genes with distinct evolutionary profiles but related to pathogenicity. Experimentally, we demonstrate for the first time the transfer of two LS chromosomes between strains of F. oxysporum, resulting in the conversion of a non-pathogenic strain into a pathogen. Transfer of LS chromosomes between otherwise genetically isolated strains explains the polyphyletic origin of host specificity and the emergence of new pathogenic lineages in the F. oxysporum species complex, putting the evolution of fungal pathogenicity into a new perspective.

  10. Comparative Genomic Analysis Reveals Ecological Differentiation in the Genus Carnobacterium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iskandar, Christelle F.; Borges, Frédéric; Taminiau, Bernard; Daube, Georges; Zagorec, Monique; Remenant, Benoît; Leisner, Jørgen J.; Hansen, Martin A.; Sørensen, Søren J.; Mangavel, Cécile; Cailliez-Grimal, Catherine; Revol-Junelles, Anne-Marie

    2017-01-01

    Lactic acid bacteria (LAB) differ in their ability to colonize food and animal-associated habitats: while some species are specialized and colonize a limited number of habitats, other are generalist and are able to colonize multiple animal-linked habitats. In the current study, Carnobacterium was used as a model genus to elucidate the genetic basis of these colonization differences. Analyses of 16S rRNA gene meta-barcoding data showed that C. maltaromaticum followed by C. divergens are the most prevalent species in foods derived from animals (meat, fish, dairy products), and in the gut. According to phylogenetic analyses, these two animal-adapted species belong to one of two deeply branched lineages. The second lineage contains species isolated from habitats where contact with animal is rare. Genome analyses revealed that members of the animal-adapted lineage harbor a larger secretome than members of the other lineage. The predicted cell-surface proteome is highly diversified in C. maltaromaticum and C. divergens with genes involved in adaptation to the animal milieu such as those encoding biopolymer hydrolytic enzymes, a heme uptake system, and biopolymer-binding adhesins. These species also exhibit genes for gut adaptation and respiration. In contrast, Carnobacterium species belonging to the second lineage encode a poorly diversified cell-surface proteome, lack genes for gut adaptation and are unable to respire. These results shed light on the important genomics traits required for adaptation to animal-linked habitats in generalist Carnobacterium. PMID:28337181

  11. Global Isotope Metabolomics Reveals Adaptive Strategies for Nitrogen Assimilation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurczy, Michael E; Forsberg, Erica M; Thorgersen, Michael P; Poole, Farris L; Benton, H Paul; Ivanisevic, Julijana; Tran, Minerva L; Wall, Judy D; Elias, Dwayne A; Adams, Michael W W; Siuzdak, Gary

    2016-06-17

    Nitrogen cycling is a microbial metabolic process essential for global ecological/agricultural balance. To investigate the link between the well-established ammonium and the alternative nitrate assimilation metabolic pathways, global isotope metabolomics was employed to examine three nitrate reducing bacteria using (15)NO3 as a nitrogen source. In contrast to a control (Pseudomonas stutzeri RCH2), the results show that two of the isolates from Oak Ridge, Tennessee (Pseudomonas N2A2 and N2E2) utilize nitrate and ammonia for assimilation concurrently with differential labeling observed across multiple classes of metabolites including amino acids and nucleotides. The data reveal that the N2A2 and N2E2 strains conserve nitrogen-containing metabolites, indicating that the nitrate assimilation pathway is a conservation mechanism for the assimilation of nitrogen. Co-utilization of nitrate and ammonia is likely an adaption to manage higher levels of nitrite since the denitrification pathways utilized by the N2A2 and N2E2 strains from the Oak Ridge site are predisposed to the accumulation of the toxic nitrite. The use of global isotope metabolomics allowed for this adaptive strategy to be investigated, which would otherwise not have been possible to decipher.

  12. Super-resolution Microscopy Reveals Compartmentalization of Peroxisomal Membrane Proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galiani, Silvia; Waithe, Dominic; Reglinski, Katharina; Cruz-Zaragoza, Luis Daniel; Garcia, Esther; Clausen, Mathias P; Schliebs, Wolfgang; Erdmann, Ralf; Eggeling, Christian

    2016-08-12

    Membrane-associated events during peroxisomal protein import processes play an essential role in peroxisome functionality. Many details of these processes are not known due to missing spatial resolution of technologies capable of investigating peroxisomes directly in the cell. Here, we present the use of super-resolution optical stimulated emission depletion microscopy to investigate with sub-60-nm resolution the heterogeneous spatial organization of the peroxisomal proteins PEX5, PEX14, and PEX11 around actively importing peroxisomes, showing distinct differences between these peroxins. Moreover, imported protein sterol carrier protein 2 (SCP2) occupies only a subregion of larger peroxisomes, highlighting the heterogeneous distribution of proteins even within the peroxisome. Finally, our data reveal subpopulations of peroxisomes showing only weak colocalization between PEX14 and PEX5 or PEX11 but at the same time a clear compartmentalized organization. This compartmentalization, which was less evident in cases of strong colocalization, indicates dynamic protein reorganization linked to changes occurring in the peroxisomes. Through the use of multicolor stimulated emission depletion microscopy, we have been able to characterize peroxisomes and their constituents to a yet unseen level of detail while maintaining a highly statistical approach, paving the way for equally complex biological studies in the future.

  13. Directional postcopulatory sexual selection revealed by artificial insemination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, Jonathan P; Zane, Lorenzo; Francescato, Samuela; Pilastro, Andrea

    2003-01-23

    Postcopulatory sexual selection comprises both sperm competition, where the sperm from different males compete for fertilization, and cryptic female choice, where females bias sperm use in favour of particular males. Despite intense current interest in both processes as potential agents of directional sexual selection, few studies have attributed the success of attractive males to events that occur exclusively after insemination. This is because the interactions between pre- and post-insemination episodes of sexual selection can be important sources of variation in paternity. The use of artificial insemination overcomes this difficulty because it controls for variation in male fertilization success attributable to the female's perception of male quality, as well as effects due to mating order and the relative contribution of sperm from competing males. Here, we adopt this technique and show that in guppies, when equal numbers of sperm from two males compete for fertilization, relatively colourful individuals achieve greater parentage than their less ornamented counterparts. This finding indicates that precopulatory female mating preferences can be reinforced exclusively through postcopulatory processes occurring at a physiological level. Our analysis also revealed that relatively small individuals were advantaged in sperm competition, suggesting a possible trade-off between sperm competitive ability and body growth.

  14. Metagenomics reveals flavour metabolic network of cereal vinegar microbiota.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Lin-Huan; Lu, Zhen-Ming; Zhang, Xiao-Juan; Wang, Zong-Min; Yu, Yong-Jian; Shi, Jin-Song; Xu, Zheng-Hong

    2017-04-01

    Multispecies microbial community formed through centuries of repeated batch acetic acid fermentation (AAF) is crucial for the flavour quality of traditional vinegar produced from cereals. However, the metabolism to generate and/or formulate the essential flavours by the multispecies microbial community is hardly understood. Here we used metagenomic approach to clarify in situ metabolic network of key microbes responsible for flavour synthesis of a typical cereal vinegar, Zhenjiang aromatic vinegar, produced by solid-state fermentation. First, we identified 3 organic acids, 7 amino acids, and 20 volatiles as dominant vinegar metabolites. Second, we revealed taxonomic and functional composition of the microbiota by metagenomic shotgun sequencing. A total of 86 201 predicted protein-coding genes from 35 phyla (951 genera) were involved in Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathways of Metabolism (42.3%), Genetic Information Processing (28.3%), and Environmental Information Processing (10.1%). Furthermore, a metabolic network for substrate breakdown and dominant flavour formation in vinegar microbiota was constructed, and microbial distribution discrepancy in different metabolic pathways was charted. This study helps elucidating different metabolic roles of microbes during flavour formation in vinegar microbiota.

  15. Algal genomes reveal evolutionary mosaicism and the fate of nucleomorphs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Curtis, Bruce A.; Tanifuji, Goro; Burki, Fabien; Gruber, Ansgar; Irimia, Manuuel; Maruyama, Shinichiro; Arias, Maria C.; Ball, Steven G.; Gile, Gillian H.; Hirakawa, Yoshihisa; Hopkins, Julia F.; Kuo, Alan; Rensing, Stefan A.; Schmutz, Jeremy; Symeonidi, Aikaterini; Elias, Marek; Eveleigh, Robert J. M.; Herman, Emily K.; Klute, Mary J.; Nakayama, Takuro; Obornik, Miroslav; Reyes-Prieto, Adrian; Armbrust, E. Virginia; Aves, Stephen J.; Beiko, Robert G.; Coutinho, Pedro; Dacks, Joel B.; Durnford, Dion G.; Fast, Naomi M.; Green, Beverley R.; Grisdale, Cameron J.; Hempel, Franziska; Henrissat, Bernard; Hoppner, Marc P.; Ishida, Ken-Ichiro; Kim, Eunsoo; Koreny, Ludek; Kroth, Peter G.; Liu, Yuan; Malik, Shehre-Banoo; Maier, Uwe G.; McRose, Darcy; Mock, Thomas; Neilson, Jonathan A. D.; Onodera, Naoko T.; Poole, Anthony M.; Pritham, Ellen J.; Richards, Thomas A.; Rocap, Gabrielle; Roy, Scott W.; Sarai, Chihiro; Schaack, Sarah; Shirato, Shu; Slamovits, Claudio H.; Spencer, Davie F.; Suzuki, Shigekatsu; Worden, Alexandra Z.; Zauner, Stefan; Barry, Kerrie; Bell, Callum; Bharti, Arvind K.; Crow, John A.; Grimwood, Jane; Kramer, Robin; Lindquist, Erika; Lucas, Susan; Salamov, Asaf; McFadden, Geoffrey I.; Lane, Christopher E.; Keeling, Patrick J.; Gray, Michael W.; Grigoriev, Igor V.; Archibald, John M.

    2012-08-10

    Cryptophyte and chlorarachniophyte algae are transitional forms in the widespread secondary endosymbiotic acquisition of photosynthesis by engulfment of eukaryotic algae. Unlike most secondary plastid-bearing algae, miniaturized versions of the endosymbiont nuclei (nucleomorphs) persist in cryptophytes and chlorarachniophytes. To determine why, and to address other fundamental questions about eukaryote eukaryote endosymbiosis, we sequenced the nuclear genomes of the cryptophyte Guillardia theta and the chlorarachniophyte Bigelowiella natans. Both genomes have 21,000 protein genes and are intron rich, and B. natans exhibits unprecedented alternative splicing for a single-celled organism. Phylogenomic analyses and subcellular targeting predictions reveal extensive genetic and biochemical mosaicism, with both host- and endosymbiont-derived genes servicing the mitochondrion, the host cell cytosol, the plastid and the remnant endosymbiont cytosol of both algae. Mitochondrion-to-nucleus gene transfer still occurs in both organisms but plastid-to-nucleus and nucleomorph-to-nucleus transfers do not, which explains why a small residue of essential genes remains locked in each nucleomorph.

  16. Revealing Amphiphilic Nanodornains of Anti-Biofouling Polymer Coatings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Amadei, CA; Yang, R; Chiesa, M; Gleason, KK; Santos, S

    2014-04-09

    Undesired bacterial adhesion and biofilm formation on wetted surfaces leads to significant economic and environmental costs in various industries. Amphiphilic coatings with molecular hydrophilic and hydrophobic patches can mitigate such biofouling effectively in an environmentally friendly manner. The coatings are synthesized by copolymerizing (Hydroxyethyl)methacrylate and perfluorodecylacrylate via initiated chemical vapor deposition (iCVD). In previous studies, the size of the patches was estimated to be similar to 1.4-1.75 nm by fitting protein adsorption data to a theoretical model. However, no direct observations of the molecular heterogeneity exist and therefore the origin of the fouling resistance of amphiphilic coatings remains unclear. Here, the amphiphilic nature is investigated by amplitude modulation atomic force microscopy (AM-AFM). High-resolution images obtained by penetrating and oscillating the AFM tip under the naturally present water layer with sub-nanometer amplitudes reveal, for the first time, the existence of amphiphilic nanodomains (1-2 nm(2)). Compositional heterogeneity at the nanoscale is further corroborated by a statistical analysis on the data obtained with dynamic AM-AFM force spectroscopy. Variations in the long range attractive forces, responsible for water affinity, are also identified. These nanoscopic results on the polymers wettability are also confirmed by contact angle measurements (i.e., static and dynamic). The unprecedented ability to visualize the amphiphilic nanodomains as well as sub-nanometer crystalline structures provides strong evidence for the existence of previously postulated nanostructures, and sheds light on the underlying antifouling mechanism of amphiphilic chemistry.

  17. Temporal dynamics of reward processing revealed by magnetoencephalography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doñamayor, Nuria; Marco-Pallarés, Josep; Heldmann, Marcus; Schoenfeld, M Ariel; Münte, Thomas F

    2011-12-01

    Monetary gains and losses in gambling situations are associated with a distinct electroencephalographic signature: in the event-related potentials (ERPs), a mediofrontal feedback-related negativity (FRN) is seen for losses, whereas oscillatory activity shows a burst of in the θ-range for losses and in the β-range for gains. We used whole-head magnetoencephalography to pinpoint the magnetic counterparts of these effects in young healthy adults and explore their evolution over time. On each trial, participants bet on one of two visually presented numbers (25 or 5) by button-press. Both numbers changed color: if the chosen number turned green (red), it indicated a gain (loss) of the corresponding sum in Euro cent. For losses, we found the magnetic correlate of the FRN extending between 230 and 465 ms. Source localization with low-resolution electromagnetic tomography indicated a first generator in posterior cingulate cortex with subsequent activity in the anterior cingulate cortex. Importantly, this effect was sensitive to the magnitude of the monetary loss (25 cent > 5 cent). Later activation was also found in the right insula. Time-frequency analysis revealed a number of oscillatory components in the theta, alpha, and high-beta/low-gamma bands associated to gains, and in the high-beta band, associated to the magnitude of the loss. All together, these effects provide a more fine-grained picture of the temporal dynamics of the processing of monetary rewards and losses in the brain.

  18. Early Neolithic water wells reveal the world's oldest wood architecture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tegel, Willy; Elburg, Rengert; Hakelberg, Dietrich; Stäuble, Harald; Büntgen, Ulf

    2012-01-01

    The European Neolithization ~6000-4000 BC represents a pivotal change in human history when farming spread and the mobile style of life of the hunter-foragers was superseded by the agrarian culture. Permanent settlement structures and agricultural production systems required fundamental innovations in technology, subsistence, and resource utilization. Motivation, course, and timing of this transformation, however, remain debatable. Here we present annually resolved and absolutely dated dendroarchaeological information from four wooden water wells of the early Neolithic period that were excavated in Eastern Germany. A total of 151 oak timbers preserved in a waterlogged environment were dated between 5469 and 5098 BC and reveal unexpectedly refined carpentry skills. The recently discovered water wells enable for the first time a detailed insight into the earliest wood architecture and display the technological capabilities of humans ~7000 years ago. The timbered well constructions made of old oak trees feature an unopened tree-ring archive from which annually resolved and absolutely dated environmental data can be culled. Our results question the principle of continuous evolutionary development in prehistoric technology, and contradict the common belief that metal was necessary for complex timber constructions. Early Neolithic craftsmanship now suggests that the first farmers were also the first carpenters.

  19. Statistical universals reveal the structures and functions of human music.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savage, Patrick E; Brown, Steven; Sakai, Emi; Currie, Thomas E

    2015-07-21

    Music has been called "the universal language of mankind." Although contemporary theories of music evolution often invoke various musical universals, the existence of such universals has been disputed for decades and has never been empirically demonstrated. Here we combine a music-classification scheme with statistical analyses, including phylogenetic comparative methods, to examine a well-sampled global set of 304 music recordings. Our analyses reveal no absolute universals but strong support for many statistical universals that are consistent across all nine geographic regions sampled. These universals include 18 musical features that are common individually as well as a network of 10 features that are commonly associated with one another. They span not only features related to pitch and rhythm that are often cited as putative universals but also rarely cited domains including performance style and social context. These cross-cultural structural regularities of human music may relate to roles in facilitating group coordination and cohesion, as exemplified by the universal tendency to sing, play percussion instruments, and dance to simple, repetitive music in groups. Our findings highlight the need for scientists studying music evolution to expand the range of musical cultures and musical features under consideration. The statistical universals we identified represent important candidates for future investigation.

  20. Can strong correlations be experimentally revealed for Ҡ -mesons?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hiesmayr Beatrix C.

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available In 1964 the physicists John St. Bell working at CERN took the 1935-idea of Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen seriously and found that all theories based on local realism have to satisfy a certain inequality, nowadays dubbed Bell’s inequality. Experiments with ordinary matter systems or light show violations of Bell’s inequality favouring the quantum theory though a loophole free experiment has not yet been performed. This contribution presents an experimentally feasible Bell inequality for systems at higher energy scales, i.e. entangled neutral Ҡ -meson pairs that are typically produced in Φ -mesons decays or proton-antiproton annihilation processes. Strong requirements have to be overcome in order to achieve a conclusive tests, such a proposal was recently published. Surprisingly, this new Bell inequality reveals new features for weakly decaying particles, in particular, a strong sensitivity to the combined charge-conjugation-parity (CP symmetry. Here-with, a puzzling relation between a symmetry breaking for mesons and Bell’s inequality—which is a necessary and sufficient condition for the security of quantum cryptography protocols— is established. This becomes the more important since CP symmetry is related to the cosmological question why the antimatter disappeared after the Big Bang.

  1. Proteomic Analysis of Hylocereus polyrhizus Reveals Metabolic Pathway Changes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qingzhu Hua

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Red dragon fruit or red pitaya (Hylocereus polyrhizus is the only edible fruit that contains betalains. The color of betalains ranges from red and violet to yellow in plants. Betalains may also serve as an important component of health-promoting and disease-preventing functional food. Currently, the biosynthetic and regulatory pathways for betalain production remain to be fully deciphered. In this study, isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ-based proteomic analyses were used to reveal the molecular mechanism of betalain biosynthesis in H. polyrhizus fruits at white and red pulp stages, respectively. A total of 1946 proteins were identified as the differentially expressed between the two samples, and 936 of them were significantly highly expressed at the red pulp stage of H. polyrhizus. RNA-seq and iTRAQ analyses showed that some transcripts and proteins were positively correlated; they belonged to “phenylpropanoid biosynthesis”, “tyrosine metabolism”, “flavonoid biosynthesis”, “ascorbate and aldarate metabolism”, “betalains biosynthesis” and “anthocyanin biosynthesis”. In betalains biosynthesis pathway, several proteins/enzymes such as polyphenol oxidase, CYP76AD3 and 4,5-dihydroxy-phenylalanine (DOPA dioxygenase extradiol-like protein were identified. The present study provides a new insight into the molecular mechanism of the betalain biosynthesis at the posttranscriptional level.

  2. Proteomic Analysis of Hylocereus polyrhizus Reveals Metabolic Pathway Changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hua, Qingzhu; Zhou, Qianjun; Gan, Susheng; Wu, Jingyu; Chen, Canbin; Li, Jiaqiang; Ye, Yaoxiong; Zhao, Jietang; Hu, Guibing; Qin, Yonghua

    2016-01-01

    Red dragon fruit or red pitaya (Hylocereus polyrhizus) is the only edible fruit that contains betalains. The color of betalains ranges from red and violet to yellow in plants. Betalains may also serve as an important component of health-promoting and disease-preventing functional food. Currently, the biosynthetic and regulatory pathways for betalain production remain to be fully deciphered. In this study, isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ)-based proteomic analyses were used to reveal the molecular mechanism of betalain biosynthesis in H. polyrhizus fruits at white and red pulp stages, respectively. A total of 1946 proteins were identified as the differentially expressed between the two samples, and 936 of them were significantly highly expressed at the red pulp stage of H. polyrhizus. RNA-seq and iTRAQ analyses showed that some transcripts and proteins were positively correlated; they belonged to “phenylpropanoid biosynthesis”, “tyrosine metabolism”, “flavonoid biosynthesis”, “ascorbate and aldarate metabolism”, “betalains biosynthesis” and “anthocyanin biosynthesis”. In betalains biosynthesis pathway, several proteins/enzymes such as polyphenol oxidase, CYP76AD3 and 4,5-dihydroxy-phenylalanine (DOPA) dioxygenase extradiol-like protein were identified. The present study provides a new insight into the molecular mechanism of the betalain biosynthesis at the posttranscriptional level. PMID:27690004

  3. Functional metabolomics reveals novel active products in the DHA metabolome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masakazu eShinohara

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Endogenous mechanisms for successful resolution of an acute inflammatory response and the local return to homeostasis are of interest because excessive inflammation underlies many human diseases. In this review, we provide an update and overview of functional metabolomics that identified a new bioactive metabolome of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA. Systematic studies revealed that DHA was converted to DHEA-derived novel bioactive products as well as aspirin-triggered (AT forms of protectins. The new oxygenated DHEA derived products blocked PMN chemotaxis, reduced P-selectin expression and platelet-leukocyte adhesion, and showed organ protection in ischemia/reperfusion injury. These products activated cannabinoid receptor (CB2 receptor and not CB1 receptors. The AT-PD1 reduced neutrophil (PMN recruitment in murine peritonitis. With human cells, AT-PD1 decreased transendothelial PMN migration as well as enhanced efferocytosis of apoptotic human PMN by macrophages. The recent findings reviewed here indicate that DHEA oxidative metabolism and aspirin-triggered conversion of DHA produce potent novel molecules with anti-inflammatory and organ-protective properties, opening the DHA metabolome functional roles.

  4. Maximal Neighbor Similarity Reveals Real Communities in Networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Žalik, Krista Rizman

    2015-12-01

    An important problem in the analysis of network data is the detection of groups of densely interconnected nodes also called modules or communities. Community structure reveals functions and organizations of networks. Currently used algorithms for community detection in large-scale real-world networks are computationally expensive or require a priori information such as the number or sizes of communities or are not able to give the same resulting partition in multiple runs. In this paper we investigate a simple and fast algorithm that uses the network structure alone and requires neither optimization of pre-defined objective function nor information about number of communities. We propose a bottom up community detection algorithm in which starting from communities consisting of adjacent pairs of nodes and their maximal similar neighbors we find real communities. We show that the overall advantage of the proposed algorithm compared to the other community detection algorithms is its simple nature, low computational cost and its very high accuracy in detection communities of different sizes also in networks with blurred modularity structure consisting of poorly separated communities. All communities identified by the proposed method for facebook network and E-Coli transcriptional regulatory network have strong structural and functional coherence.

  5. Geometric Mechanics Reveals Optimal Complex Terrestrial Undulation Patterns

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gong, Chaohui; Astley, Henry; Schiebel, Perrin; Dai, Jin; Travers, Matthew; Goldman, Daniel; Choset, Howie; CMU Team; GT Team

    Geometric mechanics offers useful tools for intuitively analyzing biological and robotic locomotion. However, utility of these tools were previously restricted to systems that have only two internal degrees of freedom and in uniform media. We show kinematics of complex locomotors that make intermittent contacts with substrates can be approximated as a linear combination of two shape bases, and can be represented using two variables. Therefore, the tools of geometric mechanics can be used to analyze motions of locomotors with many degrees of freedom. To demonstrate the proposed technique, we present studies on two different types of snake gaits which utilize combinations of waves in the horizontal and vertical planes: sidewinding (in the sidewinder rattlesnake C. cerastes) and lateral undulation (in the desert specialist snake C. occipitalis). C. cerastes moves by generating posteriorly traveling body waves in the horizontal and vertical directions, with a relative phase offset equal to +/-π/2 while C. occipitalismaintains a π/2 offset of a frequency doubled vertical wave. Geometric analysis reveals these coordination patterns enable optimal movement in the two different styles of undulatory terrestrial locomotion. More broadly, these examples demonstrate the utility of geometric mechanics in analyzing realistic biological and robotic locomotion.

  6. Acoustic telemetry reveals cryptic residency of whale sharks

    KAUST Repository

    Cagua, Edgar F.

    2015-04-01

    Althoughwhale sharks (Rhincodon typus) have beendocumentedtomove thousands of kilometres, they are most frequently observed at a few predictable seasonal aggregation sites. The absence of sharks at the surface during visual surveys has led to the assumption that sharks disperse to places unknown during the long \\'off-seasons\\' at most of these locations. Here we compare 2 years of R. typus visual sighting records from Mafia Island in Tanzania to concurrent acoustic telemetry of tagged individuals. Sightings revealed a clear seasonal pattern with a peak between October and February and no sharks observed at other times. By contrast, acoustic telemetry demonstrated yearround residency of R. typus. The sharks use a different habitat in the offseason, swimming deeper and further away from shore, presumably in response to prey distributions. This behavioural change reduces the sharks\\' visibility, giving the false impression that they have left the area.We demonstrate, for the first timeto our knowledge, year-roundresidencyofunprovisioned, individual R. typus at an aggregation site, and highlight the importance of using multiple techniques to study the movement ecology of marine megafauna. © 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  7. On the revealing of nonequilibrium phase transitions in water

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pershin, S. M.; Krutyansky, L. M.; Luk'yanchenko, V. A.

    2011-09-01

    It has been found that the jump and stabilization of the temperature observed in [L.N. Baturov et al., JETP Lett. 93, 91 (2011)] upon the heating/cooling of water near 4°C at a rate of ˜10-3 K/s are observed in water of any purification degree. However, we have not found the process of the formation/melting of supermolecular structures assumed by Baturov et al., which is sought in the shift of the center of the OH band of Raman scattering, e.g., at ˜150 cm-1, as at the melting of hexagonal 1h ice [S.M. Pershin and A.F. Bunkin, Opt. Spectrosc. 85, 190 (1998); Patent RF No. 98, 103249 (1998)]. It has been shown that the revealed temperature features are absent in the presence of the mixing of water and artificial limitation of convection, as well as in a thin layer; this indicates that the regularity of the phenomenon is doubtful and that convection plays an important role. The visualization of convection flows by potassium permanganate made it possible to detect the reversion of their circulation over the trajectory of surface-wall-bottom-volume symmetry axis at the transition through a point of 4°C. The observed features have been interpreted as a manifestation of Archimedes' principle.

  8. Integrative modelling reveals mechanisms linking productivity and plant species richness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grace, James B; Anderson, T Michael; Seabloom, Eric W; Borer, Elizabeth T; Adler, Peter B; Harpole, W Stanley; Hautier, Yann; Hillebrand, Helmut; Lind, Eric M; Pärtel, Meelis; Bakker, Jonathan D; Buckley, Yvonne M; Crawley, Michael J; Damschen, Ellen I; Davies, Kendi F; Fay, Philip A; Firn, Jennifer; Gruner, Daniel S; Hector, Andy; Knops, Johannes M H; MacDougall, Andrew S; Melbourne, Brett A; Morgan, John W; Orrock, John L; Prober, Suzanne M; Smith, Melinda D

    2016-01-21

    How ecosystem productivity and species richness are interrelated is one of the most debated subjects in the history of ecology. Decades of intensive study have yet to discern the actual mechanisms behind observed global patterns. Here, by integrating the predictions from multiple theories into a single model and using data from 1,126 grassland plots spanning five continents, we detect the clear signals of numerous underlying mechanisms linking productivity and richness. We find that an integrative model has substantially higher explanatory power than traditional bivariate analyses. In addition, the specific results unveil several surprising findings that conflict with classical models. These include the isolation of a strong and consistent enhancement of productivity by richness, an effect in striking contrast with superficial data patterns. Also revealed is a consistent importance of competition across the full range of productivity values, in direct conflict with some (but not all) proposed models. The promotion of local richness by macroecological gradients in climatic favourability, generally seen as a competing hypothesis, is also found to be important in our analysis. The results demonstrate that an integrative modelling approach leads to a major advance in our ability to discern the underlying processes operating in ecological systems.

  9. Eukaryote culturomics of the gut reveals new species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nina Gouba

    Full Text Available The repertoire of microeukaryotes in the human gut has been poorly explored, mainly in individuals living in northern hemisphere countries. We further explored this repertoire using PCR-sequencing and culture in seven individuals living in four tropical countries. A total of 41 microeukaryotes including 38 different fungal species and three protists were detected. Four fungal species, Davidiella tassiana, Davidiella sp., Corticiaceae sp., and Penicillium sp., were uniquely detected by culture; 27 fungal species were uniquely detected using PCR-sequencing and Candida albicans, Candida glabrata, Trichosporon asahii, Clavispora lusitaniae, Debaryomyces hansenii, Malassezia restricta, and Malassezia sp. were detected using both molecular and culture methods. Fourteen microeukaryotes were shared by the seven individuals, whereas 27 species were found in only one individual, including 11 species in Amazonia, nine species in Polynesia, five species in India, and two species in Senegal. These data support a worldwide distribution of Malassezia sp., Trichosporon sp., and Candida sp. in the gut mycobiome. Here, 13 fungal species and two protists, Stentor roeseli and Vorticella campanula, were observed for first time in the human gut. This study revealed a previously unsuspected diversity in the repertoire of human gut microeukaryotes, suggesting spots for further exploring this repertoire.

  10. Eukaryote culturomics of the gut reveals new species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gouba, Nina; Raoult, Didier; Drancourt, Michel

    2014-01-01

    The repertoire of microeukaryotes in the human gut has been poorly explored, mainly in individuals living in northern hemisphere countries. We further explored this repertoire using PCR-sequencing and culture in seven individuals living in four tropical countries. A total of 41 microeukaryotes including 38 different fungal species and three protists were detected. Four fungal species, Davidiella tassiana, Davidiella sp., Corticiaceae sp., and Penicillium sp., were uniquely detected by culture; 27 fungal species were uniquely detected using PCR-sequencing and Candida albicans, Candida glabrata, Trichosporon asahii, Clavispora lusitaniae, Debaryomyces hansenii, Malassezia restricta, and Malassezia sp. were detected using both molecular and culture methods. Fourteen microeukaryotes were shared by the seven individuals, whereas 27 species were found in only one individual, including 11 species in Amazonia, nine species in Polynesia, five species in India, and two species in Senegal. These data support a worldwide distribution of Malassezia sp., Trichosporon sp., and Candida sp. in the gut mycobiome. Here, 13 fungal species and two protists, Stentor roeseli and Vorticella campanula, were observed for first time in the human gut. This study revealed a previously unsuspected diversity in the repertoire of human gut microeukaryotes, suggesting spots for further exploring this repertoire.

  11. Pyrosequencing Reveals Fungal Communities in the Rhizosphere of Xinjiang Jujube

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peng Liu

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Fungi are important soil components as both decomposers and plant symbionts and play a major role in ecological and biogeochemical processes. However, little is known about the richness and structure of fungal communities. DNA sequencing technologies allow for the direct estimation of microbial community diversity, avoiding culture-based biases. We therefore used 454 pyrosequencing to investigate the fungal communities in the rhizosphere of Xinjiang jujube. We obtained no less than 40,488 internal transcribed spacer (ITS rDNA reads, the number of each sample was 6943, 6647, 6584, 6550, 6860, and 6904, and we used bioinformatics and multivariate statistics to analyze the results. The index of diversity showed greater richness in the rhizosphere fungal community of a 3-year-old jujube than in that of an 8-year-old jujube. Most operational taxonomic units belonged to Ascomycota, and taxonomic analyses identified Hypocreales as the dominant fungal order. Our results demonstrated that the fungal orders are present in different proportions in different sampling areas. Redundancy analysis (RDA revealed a significant correlation between soil properties and the abundance of fungal phyla. Our results indicated lower fungal diversity in the rhizosphere of Xinjiang jujube than that reported in other studies, and we hope our findings provide a reference for future research.

  12. Nicotinamide riboside kinase structures reveal new pathways to NAD+.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tempel, Wolfram; Rabeh, Wael M; Bogan, Katrina L; Belenky, Peter; Wojcik, Marzena; Seidle, Heather F; Nedyalkova, Lyudmila; Yang, Tianle; Sauve, Anthony A; Park, Hee-Won; Brenner, Charles

    2007-10-02

    The eukaryotic nicotinamide riboside kinase (Nrk) pathway, which is induced in response to nerve damage and promotes replicative life span in yeast, converts nicotinamide riboside to nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) by phosphorylation and adenylylation. Crystal structures of human Nrk1 bound to nucleoside and nucleotide substrates and products revealed an enzyme structurally similar to Rossmann fold metabolite kinases and allowed the identification of active site residues, which were shown to be essential for human Nrk1 and Nrk2 activity in vivo. Although the structures account for the 500-fold discrimination between nicotinamide riboside and pyrimidine nucleosides, no enzyme feature was identified to recognize the distinctive carboxamide group of nicotinamide riboside. Indeed, nicotinic acid riboside is a specific substrate of human Nrk enzymes and is utilized in yeast in a novel biosynthetic pathway that depends on Nrk and NAD+ synthetase. Additionally, nicotinic acid riboside is utilized in vivo by Urh1, Pnp1, and Preiss-Handler salvage. Thus, crystal structures of Nrk1 led to the identification of new pathways to NAD+.

  13. Nicotinamide riboside kinase structures reveal new pathways to NAD+.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wolfram Tempel

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available The eukaryotic nicotinamide riboside kinase (Nrk pathway, which is induced in response to nerve damage and promotes replicative life span in yeast, converts nicotinamide riboside to nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+ by phosphorylation and adenylylation. Crystal structures of human Nrk1 bound to nucleoside and nucleotide substrates and products revealed an enzyme structurally similar to Rossmann fold metabolite kinases and allowed the identification of active site residues, which were shown to be essential for human Nrk1 and Nrk2 activity in vivo. Although the structures account for the 500-fold discrimination between nicotinamide riboside and pyrimidine nucleosides, no enzyme feature was identified to recognize the distinctive carboxamide group of nicotinamide riboside. Indeed, nicotinic acid riboside is a specific substrate of human Nrk enzymes and is utilized in yeast in a novel biosynthetic pathway that depends on Nrk and NAD+ synthetase. Additionally, nicotinic acid riboside is utilized in vivo by Urh1, Pnp1, and Preiss-Handler salvage. Thus, crystal structures of Nrk1 led to the identification of new pathways to NAD+.

  14. Puffy Hand Syndrome Revealed by a Severe Staphylococcal Skin Infection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reyhan Amode

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Puffy hand syndrome develops after long-term intravenous drug addiction. It is characterized by a nonpitting edema, affecting the dorsal side of fingers and hands with puffy aspect. Frequency and severity of the complications of this syndrome are rarely reported. Local infectious complications such as cellulitis can be severe and can enable the diagnosis. Herein, we report the case of a 41-year-old man who went to the emergency department for abdominal pain, fever, and bullous lesions of legs and arms with edema. Bacteriologic examination of a closed bullous lesion evidenced a methicillin sensitive Staphylococcus aureus. The abdomen computed tomography excluded deep infections and peritoneal effusion. The patient was successfully treated by intravenous oxacillin and clindamycin. He had a previous history of intravenous heroin addiction. We retained the diagnosis of puffy hand syndrome revealed by a severe staphylococcal infection with toxic involvement mimicking a four limbs cellulitis. Puffy hand syndrome, apart from the chronic lymphedema treatment, has no specific medication available. Prophylactic measures against skin infections are essential.

  15. Distributed neural system for emotional intelligence revealed by lesion mapping.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbey, Aron K; Colom, Roberto; Grafman, Jordan

    2014-03-01

    Cognitive neuroscience has made considerable progress in understanding the neural architecture of human intelligence, identifying a broadly distributed network of frontal and parietal regions that support goal-directed, intelligent behavior. However, the contributions of this network to social and emotional aspects of intellectual function remain to be well characterized. Here we investigated the neural basis of emotional intelligence in 152 patients with focal brain injuries using voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping. Latent variable modeling was applied to obtain measures of emotional intelligence, general intelligence and personality from the Mayer, Salovey, Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test (MSCEIT), the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale and the Neuroticism-Extroversion-Openness Inventory, respectively. Regression analyses revealed that latent scores for measures of general intelligence and personality reliably predicted latent scores for emotional intelligence. Lesion mapping results further indicated that these convergent processes depend on a shared network of frontal, temporal and parietal brain regions. The results support an integrative framework for understanding the architecture of executive, social and emotional processes and make specific recommendations for the interpretation and application of the MSCEIT to the study of emotional intelligence in health and disease.

  16. SAGE2Splice: unmapped SAGE tags reveal novel splice junctions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Byron Yu-Lin Kuo

    2006-04-01

    Full Text Available Serial analysis of gene expression (SAGE not only is a method for profiling the global expression of genes, but also offers the opportunity for the discovery of novel transcripts. SAGE tags are mapped to known transcripts to determine the gene of origin. Tags that map neither to a known transcript nor to the genome were hypothesized to span a splice junction, for which the exon combination or exon(s are unknown. To test this hypothesis, we have developed an algorithm, SAGE2Splice, to efficiently map SAGE tags to potential splice junctions in a genome. The algorithm consists of three search levels. A scoring scheme was designed based on position weight matrices to assess the quality of candidates. Using optimized parameters for SAGE2Splice analysis and two sets of SAGE data, candidate junctions were discovered for 5%-6% of unmapped tags. Candidates were classified into three categories, reflecting the previous annotations of the putative splice junctions. Analysis of predicted tags extracted from EST sequences demonstrated that candidate junctions having the splice junction located closer to the center of the tags are more reliable. Nine of these 12 candidates were validated by RT-PCR and sequencing, and among these, four revealed previously uncharacterized exons. Thus, SAGE2Splice provides a new functionality for the identification of novel transcripts and exons. SAGE2Splice is available online at http://www.cisreg.ca.

  17. CRISPR loci reveal networks of gene exchange in archaea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brodt Avital

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background CRISPR (Clustered, Regularly, Interspaced, Short, Palindromic Repeats loci provide prokaryotes with an adaptive immunity against viruses and other mobile genetic elements. CRISPR arrays can be transcribed and processed into small crRNA molecules, which are then used by the cell to target the foreign nucleic acid. Since spacers are accumulated by active CRISPR/Cas systems, the sequences of these spacers provide a record of the past "infection history" of the organism. Results Here we analyzed all currently known spacers present in archaeal genomes and identified their source by DNA similarity. While nearly 50% of archaeal spacers matched mobile genetic elements, such as plasmids or viruses, several others matched chromosomal genes of other organisms, primarily other archaea. Thus, networks of gene exchange between archaeal species were revealed by the spacer analysis, including many cases of inter-genus and inter-species gene transfer events. Spacers that recognize viral sequences tend to be located further away from the leader sequence, implying that there exists a selective pressure for their retention. Conclusions CRISPR spacers provide direct evidence for extensive gene exchange in archaea, especially within genera, and support the current dogma where the primary role of the CRISPR/Cas system is anti-viral and anti-plasmid defense. Open peer review This article was reviewed by: Profs. W. Ford Doolittle, John van der Oost, Christa Schleper (nominated by board member Prof. J Peter Gogarten

  18. Molecular analysis of sourdough reveals Lactobacillus mindensis sp. nov.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehrmann, Matthias A; Müller, Martin R A; Vogel, Rudi F

    2003-01-01

    Genotypic fingerprinting to analyse the bacterial flora of an industrial sourdough revealed a coherent group of strains which could not be associated with a valid species. Comparative 16S rDNA sequence analysis showed that these strains formed a homogeneous cluster distinct from their closest relatives, Lactobacillus farciminis, Lactobacillus alimentarius and Lactobacillus kimchii. To characterize them further, physiological (sugar fermentation, formation of DL-lactate, hydrolysis of arginine, growth temperature, CO2 production) and chemotaxonomic properties have been determined. The DNA G +C content was 37.5 0.2 mol%. The peptidoglycan was of the lysine-D-iso-asparagine (L-Lys-D-Asp) type. The strains were homofermentative, Gram-positive, catalase-negative, non-spore-forming, non-motile rods. They were found as a major stable component of a rye flour sourdough fermentation. Physiological, biochemical as well as genotypic data suggested them to be a new species of the genus Lactobacillus. This was confirmed by DNA-DNA hybridization of genomic DNA, and the name Lactobacillus mindensis is proposed. The type strain of this species is DSM 14500T (=LMG 21508T).

  19. Strategy revealing phenotypic differences among synthetic oscillator designs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lomnitz, Jason G; Savageau, Michael A

    2014-09-19

    Considerable progress has been made in identifying and characterizing the component parts of genetic oscillators, which play central roles in all organisms. Nonlinear interaction among components is sufficiently complex that mathematical models are required to elucidate their elusive integrated behavior. Although natural and synthetic oscillators exhibit common architectures, there are numerous differences that are poorly understood. Utilizing synthetic biology to uncover basic principles of simpler circuits is a way to advance understanding of natural circadian clocks and rhythms. Following this strategy, we address the following questions: What are the implications of different architectures and molecular modes of transcriptional control for the phenotypic repertoire of genetic oscillators? Are there designs that are more realizable or robust? We compare synthetic oscillators involving one of three architectures and various combinations of the two modes of transcriptional control using a methodology that provides three innovations: a rigorous definition of phenotype, a procedure for deconstructing complex systems into qualitatively distinct phenotypes, and a graphical representation for illuminating the relationship between genotype, environment, and the qualitatively distinct phenotypes of a system. These methods provide a global perspective on the behavioral repertoire, facilitate comparisons of alternatives, and assist the rational design of synthetic gene circuitry. In particular, the results of their application here reveal distinctive phenotypes for several designs that have been studied experimentally as well as a best design among the alternatives that has yet to be constructed and tested.

  20. Revealing catastrophic failure of leaf networks under stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brodribb, Timothy J; Bienaimé, Diane; Marmottant, Philippe

    2016-04-26

    The intricate patterns of veins that adorn the leaves of land plants are among the most important networks in biology. Water flows in these leaf irrigation networks under tension and is vulnerable to embolism-forming cavitations, which cut off water supply, ultimately causing leaf death. Understanding the ways in which plants structure their vein supply network to protect against embolism-induced failure has enormous ecological and evolutionary implications, but until now there has been no way of observing dynamic failure in natural leaf networks. Here we use a new optical method that allows the initiation and spread of embolism bubbles in the leaf network to be visualized. Examining embolism-induced failure of architecturally diverse leaf networks, we found that conservative rules described the progression of hydraulic failure within veins. The most fundamental rule was that within an individual venation network, susceptibility to embolism always increased proportionally with the size of veins, and initial nucleation always occurred in the largest vein. Beyond this general framework, considerable diversity in the pattern of network failure was found between species, related to differences in vein network topology. The highest-risk network was found in a fern species, where single events caused massive disruption to leaf water supply, whereas safer networks in angiosperm leaves contained veins with composite properties, allowing a staged failure of water supply. These results reveal how the size structure of leaf venation is a critical determinant of the spread of embolism damage to leaves during drought.

  1. Enhancer networks revealed by correlated DNAse hypersensitivity states of enhancers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malin, Justin; Aniba, Mohamed Radhouane; Hannenhalli, Sridhar

    2013-08-01

    Mammalian gene expression is often regulated by distal enhancers. However, little is known about higher order functional organization of enhancers. Using ∼100 K P300-bound regions as candidate enhancers, we investigated their correlated activity across 72 cell types based on DNAse hypersensitivity. We found widespread correlated activity between enhancers, which decreases with increasing inter-enhancer genomic distance. We found that correlated enhancers tend to share common transcription factor (TF) binding motifs, and several chromatin modification enzymes preferentially interact with these TFs. Presence of shared motifs in enhancer pairs can predict correlated activity with 73% accuracy. Also, genes near correlated enhancers exhibit correlated expression and share common function. Correlated enhancers tend to be spatially proximal. Interestingly, weak enhancers tend to correlate with significantly greater numbers of other enhancers relative to strong enhancers. Furthermore, strong/weak enhancers preferentially correlate with strong/weak enhancers, respectively. We constructed enhancer networks based on shared motif and correlated activity and show significant functional enrichment in their putative target gene clusters. Overall, our analyses show extensive correlated activity among enhancers and reveal clusters of enhancers whose activities are coordinately regulated by multiple potential mechanisms involving shared TF binding, chromatin modifying enzymes and 3D chromatin structure, which ultimately co-regulate functionally linked genes.

  2. Electrical neuroimaging reveals early generator modulation to emotional words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortigue, Stephanie; Michel, Christoph M; Murray, Micah M; Mohr, Christine; Carbonnel, Serge; Landis, Theodor

    2004-04-01

    Functional electrical neuroimaging investigated incidental emotional word processing. Previous research suggests that the brain may differentially respond to the emotional content of linguistic stimuli pre-lexically (i.e., before distinguishing that these stimuli are words). We investigated the spatiotemporal brain mechanisms of this apparent paradox and in particular whether the initial differentiation of emotional stimuli is marked by different brain generator configurations using high-density, event-related potentials. Such would support the existence of specific cerebral resources dedicated to emotional word processing. A related issue concerns the possibility of right-hemispheric specialization in the processing of emotional stimuli. Thirteen healthy men performed a go/no-go lexical decision task with bilateral word/non-word or non-word/non-word stimulus pairs. Words included equal numbers of neutral and emotional stimuli, but subjects made no explicit discrimination along this dimension. Emotional words appearing in the right visual field (ERVF) yielded the best overall performance, although the difference between emotional and neutral words was larger for left than for right visual field presentations. Electrophysiologically, ERVF presentations were distinguished from all other conditions over the 100-140 ms period by a distinct scalp topography, indicative of different intracranial generator configurations. A distributed linear source estimation (LAURA) of this distinct scalp potential field revealed bilateral lateral-occipital sources with a right hemisphere current density maximum. These data support the existence of a specialized brain network triggered by the emotional connotation of words at a very early processing stage.

  3. Acoustic telemetry reveals cryptic residency of whale sharks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cagua, E Fernando; Cochran, Jesse E M; Rohner, Christoph A; Prebble, Clare E M; Sinclair-Taylor, Tane H; Pierce, Simon J; Berumen, Michael L

    2015-04-01

    Although whale sharks (Rhincodon typus) have been documented to move thousands of kilometres, they are most frequently observed at a few predictable seasonal aggregation sites. The absence of sharks at the surface during visual surveys has led to the assumption that sharks disperse to places unknown during the long 'off-seasons' at most of these locations. Here we compare 2 years of R. typus visual sighting records from Mafia Island in Tanzania to concurrent acoustic telemetry of tagged individuals. Sightings revealed a clear seasonal pattern with a peak between October and February and no sharks observed at other times. By contrast, acoustic telemetry demonstrated year-round residency of R. typus. The sharks use a different habitat in the off-season, swimming deeper and further away from shore, presumably in response to prey distributions. This behavioural change reduces the sharks' visibility, giving the false impression that they have left the area. We demonstrate, for the first time to our knowledge, year-round residency of unprovisioned, individual R. typus at an aggregation site, and highlight the importance of using multiple techniques to study the movement ecology of marine megafauna.

  4. Polymyalgia Rheumatica Revealing a Lymphoma: A Two-Case Report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frank Verhoeven

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Introduction. Polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR is one of the most common inflammatory rheumatism types in elderly population. The link between cancer and PMR is a matter of debate. Methods. We report two cases of PMR leading to the diagnosis of lymphoma and the growing interest of PET-TDM in this indication. Results. A 84-year-old man known for idiopathic neutropenia presented an inflammatory arthromyalgia of the limb girdle since one month. Blood exams highlighted the presence of a monoclonal B cell clone. Bone marrow concluded to a B cell lymphoma of the marginal zone. He was successfully treated with 0.3 mg/kg/d of prednisone, and response was sustained after 6 months. A 73-year-old man known for prostatic neoplasia in remission for 5 years presented arthromyalgia of the limb girdle since one month. PET-CT revealed bursitis of the hips and the shoulders, no prostatic cancer recurrence, and a metabolically active iliac lymphadenopathy whose pathologic exam concluded to a low grade follicular lymphoma. He was successfully treated with 0.3 mg/kg/d of prednisone. Conclusion. These observations may imply that lymphoma is sometimes already present when PMR is diagnosed and PET-CT is a useful tool in the initial assessment of PMR to avoid missing neoplasia.

  5. Cassava root membrane proteome reveals activities during storage root maturation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naconsie, Maliwan; Lertpanyasampatha, Manassawe; Viboonjun, Unchera; Netrphan, Supatcharee; Kuwano, Masayoshi; Ogasawara, Naotake; Narangajavana, Jarunya

    2016-01-01

    Cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) is one of the most important crops of Thailand. Its storage roots are used as food, feed, starch production, and be the important source for biofuel and biodegradable plastic production. Despite the importance of cassava storage roots, little is known about the mechanisms involved in their formation. This present study has focused on comparison of the expression profiles of cassava root proteome at various developmental stages using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis and LC-MS/MS. Based on an anatomical study using Toluidine Blue, the secondary growth was confirmed to be essential during the development of cassava storage root. To investigate biochemical processes occurring during storage root maturation, soluble and membrane proteins were isolated from storage roots harvested from 3-, 6-, 9-, and 12-month-old cassava plants. The proteins with differential expression pattern were analysed and identified to be associated with 8 functional groups: protein folding and degradation, energy, metabolism, secondary metabolism, stress response, transport facilitation, cytoskeleton, and unclassified function. The expression profiling of membrane proteins revealed the proteins involved in protein folding and degradation, energy, and cell structure were highly expressed during early stages of development. Integration of these data along with the information available in genome and transcriptome databases is critical to expand knowledge obtained solely from the field of proteomics. Possible role of identified proteins were discussed in relation with the activities during storage root maturation in cassava.

  6. Revealing the intricate effect of collaboration on innovation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hiroyasu Inoue

    Full Text Available We studied the Japan and U.S. patent records of several decades to demonstrate the effect of collaboration on innovation. We found that statistically inventor teams slightly outperform solo inventors while company teams perform equally well as solo companies. By tracking the performance record of individual teams, we found that inventor teams' performance generally degrades with more repeat collaborations. Though company teams' performance displays strongly bursty behavior, long-term collaboration does not significantly help innovation. To systematically study the effect of repeat collaboration, we defined the repeat collaboration number of a team as the average number of collaborations over all the teammate pairs. We found that mild repeat collaboration improves the performance of Japanese inventor teams and U.S. company teams. Yet, excessive repeat collaboration does not significantly help innovation at both the inventor and company levels in both countries. To control for unobserved heterogeneity, we performed a detailed regression analysis and the results were consistent with our simple observations. The presented results revealed the intricate effect of collaboration on innovation, which may also be observed in other creative projects.

  7. Satellite-detected fluorescence reveals global physiology of ocean phytoplankton

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    M. J. Behrenfeld

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Phytoplankton photosynthesis links global ocean biology and climate-driven fluctuations in the physical environment. These interactions are largely expressed through changes in phytoplankton physiology, but physiological status has proven extremely challenging to characterize globally. Phytoplankton fluorescence does provide a rich source of physiological information long exploited in laboratory and field studies, and is now observed from space. Here we evaluate the physiological underpinnings of global variations in satellite-based phytoplankton chlorophyll fluorescence. The three dominant factors influencing fluorescence distributions are chlorophyll concentration, pigment packaging effects on light absorption, and light-dependent energy-quenching processes. After accounting for these three factors, resultant global distributions of quenching-corrected fluorescence quantum yields reveal a striking consistency with anticipated patterns of iron availability. High fluorescence quantum yields are typically found in low iron waters, while low quantum yields dominate regions where other environmental factors are most limiting to phytoplankton growth. Specific properties of photosynthetic membranes are discussed that provide a mechanistic view linking iron stress to satellite-detected fluorescence. Our results present satellite-based fluorescence as a valuable tool for evaluating nutrient stress predictions in ocean ecosystem models and give the first synoptic observational evidence that iron plays an important role in seasonal phytoplankton dynamics of the Indian Ocean. Satellite fluorescence may also provide a path for monitoring climate-phytoplankton physiology interactions and improving descriptions of phytoplankton light use efficiencies in ocean productivity models.

  8. Extreme dust disks in Arp 220 as revealed by ALMA

    CERN Document Server

    Wilson, C D; Glenn, J; Maloney, P R; Spinoglio, L; Pereira-Santaella, M

    2014-01-01

    We present new images of Arp 220 from the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array with the highest combination of frequency (691 GHz) and resolution ($0.36 \\times 0.20^{\\prime\\prime}$) ever obtained for this prototypical ultraluminous infrared galaxy. The western nucleus is revealed to contain warm (200 K) dust that is optically thick ($\\tau_{434\\mu m} = 5.3$), while the eastern nucleus is cooler (80 K) and somewhat less opaque ($\\tau_{434\\mu m} = 1.7$). We derive full-width half-maximum diameters of $ 76 \\times \\le 70$ pc and $123 \\times 79$ pc for the western and eastern nucleus, respectively. The two nuclei combined account for ($83 ^{+65}_{-38}$ (calibration) $^{+0}_{-34}$ (systematic))% of the total infrared luminosity of Arp 220. The luminosity surface density of the western nucleus ($ \\log(\\sigma T^4) = 14.3\\pm 0.2 ^{+0}_{-0.7}$ in units of L$_\\odot$ kpc$^{-2}$) appears sufficiently high to require the presence of an AGN or a "hot starburst", although the exact value depends sensitively on the bri...

  9. Planarian Phototactic Assay Reveals Differential Behavioral Responses Based on Wavelength.

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    Taylor R Paskin

    Full Text Available Planarians are free-living aquatic flatworms that possess a well-documented photophobic response to light. With a true central nervous system and simple cerebral eyes (ocelli, planarians are an emerging model for regenerative eye research. However, comparatively little is known about the physiology of their photoreception or how their behavior is affected by various wavelengths. Most phototactic studies have examined planarian behavior using white light. Here, we describe a novel planarian behavioral assay to test responses to small ranges of visible wavelengths (red, blue, green, as well as ultraviolet (UV and infrared (IR which have not previously been examined. Our data show that planarians display behavioral responses across a range of wavelengths. These responses occur in a hierarchy, with the shortest wavelengths (UV causing the most intense photophobic responses while longer wavelengths produce no effect (red or an apparent attraction (IR. In addition, our data reveals that planarian photophobia is comprised of both a general photophobic response (that drives planarians to escape the light source regardless of wavelength and wavelength-specific responses that encompass specific behavioral reactions to individual wavelengths. Our results serve to improve the understanding of planarian phototaxis and suggest that behavioral studies performed with white light mask a complex behavioral interaction with the environment.

  10. Artemin Crystal Structure Reveals Insights into Heparan Sulfate Binding

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Silvian,L.; Jin, P.; Carmillo, P.; Boriack-Sjodin, P.; Pelletier, C.; Rushe, M.; Gong, B.; Sah, D.; Pepinsky, B.; Rossomando, A.

    2006-01-01

    Artemin (ART) promotes the growth of developing peripheral neurons by signaling through a multicomponent receptor complex comprised of a transmembrane tyrosine kinase receptor (cRET) and a specific glycosylphosphatidylinositol-linked co-receptor (GFR{alpha}3). Glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) signals through a similar ternary complex but requires heparan sulfate proteoglycans (HSPGs) for full activity. HSPG has not been demonstrated as a requirement for ART signaling. We crystallized ART in the presence of sulfate and solved its structure by isomorphous replacement. The structure reveals ordered sulfate anions bound to arginine residues in the pre-helix and amino-terminal regions that were organized in a triad arrangement characteristic of heparan sulfate. Three residues in the pre-helix were singly or triply substituted with glutamic acid, and the resulting proteins were shown to have reduced heparin-binding affinity that is partly reflected in their ability to activate cRET. This study suggests that ART binds HSPGs and identifies residues that may be involved in HSPG binding.

  11. High resolution spectroscopy reveals fibrillation inhibition pathways of insulin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deckert-Gaudig, Tanja; Deckert, Volker

    2016-12-01

    Fibril formation implies the conversion of a protein’s native secondary structure and is associated with several neurodegenerative diseases. A better understanding of fibrillation inhibition and fibril dissection requires nanoscale molecular characterization of amyloid structures involved. Tip-enhanced Raman scattering (TERS) has already been used to chemically analyze amyloid fibrils on a sub-protein unit basis. Here, TERS in combination with atomic force microscopy (AFM), and conventional Raman spectroscopy characterizes insulin assemblies generated during inhibition and dissection experiments in the presence of benzonitrile, dimethylsulfoxide, quercetin, and β-carotene. The AFM topography indicates formation of filamentous or bead-like insulin self-assemblies. Information on the secondary structure of bulk samples and of single aggregates is obtained from standard Raman and TERS measurements. In particular the high spatial resolution of TERS reveals the surface conformations associated with the specific agents. The insulin aggregates formed under different inhibition and dissection conditions can show a similar morphology but differ in their β-sheet structure content. This suggests different aggregation pathways where the prevention of the β-sheet stacking of the peptide chains plays a major role. The presented approach is not limited to amyloid-related reasearch but can be readily applied to systems requiring extremely surface-sensitive characterization without the need of labels.

  12. A novel assay reveals hygrotactic behavior in Drosophila.

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    Feiteng Ji

    Full Text Available Humidity is one of the most important factors that determines the geographical distribution and survival of terrestrial animals. The ability to detect variation in humidity is conserved across many species. Here, we established a novel behavioral assay that revealed the thirsty Drosophila exhibits strong hygrotactic behavior, and it can locate water by detecting humidity gradient. In addition, exposure to high levels of moisture was sufficient to elicit proboscis extension reflex behavior in thirsty flies. Furthermore, we found that the third antennal segment was necessary for hygrotactic behavior in thirsty flies, while arista was required for the avoidance of moist air in hydrated flies. These results indicated that two types of hygroreceptor cells exist in Drosophila: one located in the third antennal segment that mediates hygrotactic behavior in thirst status, and the other located in arista which is responsible for the aversive behavior toward moist air in hydration status. Using a neural silencing screen, we demonstrated that synaptic output from the mushroom body α/β surface and posterior neurons was required for both hygrotactic behavior and moisture-aversive behavior.

  13. Revealing the crust of western Romania using CCP tehniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tataru, D.; Stuart, G.; Grecu, B.

    2012-04-01

    weight is determined from a 2-D Gaussian function whose one standard deviation width is chosen appropriately by the array aperture and/or Fresnel zone at the imaging target (Eagar et al., 2011). Our results reveal an average crustal thickness of 28-30 km beneath the Romanian sector of the Panonian Basin and a thicker crust for stations within the Southern Carpathian Orogen (~35km). For two stations located in the Apuseni Mountains the Moho discontinuity is replaced by a transition zone extended between 36 and 40 km depth. The H-k stacking solutions reveal significant variations in crustal thickness across the study region. Both H-k and GCCP stacking show general agreement in the pattern of Moho topography. Discrepancies between the two results are mostly linear shifts and both exhibit the same broad-scale patterns. Poisson's ratios across the region vary strongly and regional patterns do not directly correlate with variations in Moho depth.

  14. Diatom proteomics reveals unique acclimation strategies to mitigate Fe limitation.

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    Brook L Nunn

    Full Text Available Phytoplankton growth rates are limited by the supply of iron (Fe in approximately one third of the open ocean, with major implications for carbon dioxide sequestration and carbon (C biogeochemistry. To date, understanding how alteration of Fe supply changes phytoplankton physiology has focused on traditional metrics such as growth rate, elemental composition, and biophysical measurements such as photosynthetic competence (Fv/Fm. Researchers have subsequently employed transcriptomics to probe relationships between changes in Fe supply and phytoplankton physiology. Recently, studies have investigated longer-term (i.e. following acclimation responses of phytoplankton to various Fe conditions. In the present study, the coastal diatom, Thalassiosira pseudonana, was acclimated (10 generations to either low or high Fe conditions, i.e. Fe-limiting and Fe-replete. Quantitative proteomics and a newly developed proteomic profiling technique that identifies low abundance proteins were employed to examine the full complement of expressed proteins and consequently the metabolic pathways utilized by the diatom under the two Fe conditions. A total of 1850 proteins were confidently identified, nearly tripling previous identifications made from differential expression in diatoms. Given sufficient time to acclimate to Fe limitation, T. pseudonana up-regulates proteins involved in pathways associated with intracellular protein recycling, thereby decreasing dependence on extracellular nitrogen (N, C and Fe. The relative increase in the abundance of photorespiration and pentose phosphate pathway proteins reveal novel metabolic shifts, which create substrates that could support other well-established physiological responses, such as heavily silicified frustules observed for Fe-limited diatoms. Here, we discovered that proteins and hence pathways observed to be down-regulated in short-term Fe starvation studies are constitutively expressed when T. pseudonana is

  15. Internetwork magnetic field as revealed by two-dimensional inversions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danilovic, S.; van Noort, M.; Rempel, M.

    2016-09-01

    Context. Properties of magnetic field in the internetwork regions are still fairly unknown because of rather weak spectropolarimetric signals. Aims: We address the matter by using the two-dimensional (2D) inversion code, which is able to retrieve the information on smallest spatial scales up to the diffraction limit, while being less susceptible to noise than most of the previous methods used. Methods: Performance of the code and the impact of various effects on the retrieved field distribution is tested first on the realistic magneto-hydrodynamic (MHD) simulations. The best inversion scenario is then applied to the real data obtained by Spectropolarimeter (SP) on board Hinode. Results: Tests on simulations show that: (1) the best choice of node position ensures a decent retrieval of all parameters; (2) the code performs well for different configurations of magnetic field; (3) slightly different noise levels or slightly different defocus included in the spatial point spread function (PSF) produces no significant effect on the results; and (4) temporal integration shifts the field distribution to a stronger, more horizontally inclined field. Conclusions: Although the contribution of the weak field is slightly overestimated owing to noise, 2D inversions are able to recover well the overall distribution of the magnetic field strength. Application of the 2D inversion code on the Hinode SP internetwork observations reveals a monotonic field strength distribution. The mean field strength at optical depth unity is ~ 130 G. At higher layers, field strength drops as the field becomes more horizontal. Regarding the distribution of the field inclination, tests show that we cannot directly retrieve it with the observations and tools at hand, however, the obtained distributions are consistent with those expected from simulations with a quasi-isotropic field inclination after accounting for observational effects.

  16. Global Considerations in Hierarchical Clustering Reveal Meaningful Patterns in Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varshavsky, Roy; Horn, David; Linial, Michal

    2008-01-01

    Background A hierarchy, characterized by tree-like relationships, is a natural method of organizing data in various domains. When considering an unsupervised machine learning routine, such as clustering, a bottom-up hierarchical (BU, agglomerative) algorithm is used as a default and is often the only method applied. Methodology/Principal Findings We show that hierarchical clustering that involve global considerations, such as top-down (TD, divisive), or glocal (global-local) algorithms are better suited to reveal meaningful patterns in the data. This is demonstrated, by testing the correspondence between the results of several algorithms (TD, glocal and BU) and the correct annotations provided by experts. The correspondence was tested in multiple domains including gene expression experiments, stock trade records and functional protein families. The performance of each of the algorithms is evaluated by statistical criteria that are assigned to clusters (nodes of the hierarchy tree) based on expert-labeled data. Whereas TD algorithms perform better on global patterns, BU algorithms perform well and are advantageous when finer granularity of the data is sought. In addition, a novel TD algorithm that is based on genuine density of the data points is presented and is shown to outperform other divisive and agglomerative methods. Application of the algorithm to more than 500 protein sequences belonging to ion-channels illustrates the potential of the method for inferring overlooked functional annotations. ClustTree, a graphical Matlab toolbox for applying various hierarchical clustering algorithms and testing their quality is made available. Conclusions Although currently rarely used, global approaches, in particular, TD or glocal algorithms, should be considered in the exploratory process of clustering. In general, applying unsupervised clustering methods can leverage the quality of manually-created mapping of proteins families. As demonstrated, it can also provide

  17. Temporal changes in milk proteomes reveal developing milk functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Xinliu; McMahon, Robert J; Woo, Jessica G; Davidson, Barbara S; Morrow, Ardythe L; Zhang, Qiang

    2012-07-06

    Human milk proteins provide essential nutrition for growth and development, and support a number of vital developmental processes in the neonate. A complete understanding of the possible functions of human milk proteins has been limited by incomplete knowledge of the human milk proteome. In this report, we have analyzed the proteomes of whey from human transitional and mature milk using ion-exchange and SDS-PAGE based protein fractionation methods. With a larger-than-normal sample loading approach, we are able to largely extend human milk proteome to 976 proteins. Among them, 152 proteins are found to render significant regulatory changes between transitional milk and mature milk. We further found that immunoglobulins sIgA and IgM are more abundant in transitional milk, whereas IgG is more abundant in mature milk, suggesting a transformation in defense mechanism from newborns to young infants. Additionally, we report a more comprehensive view of a complement system and associated regulatory apparatus in human milk, demonstrating the presence and function of a system similar to that found in the circulation but prevailed by alternative pathway in complement activation. Proteins involved in various aspects of carbohydrate metabolism are also described, revealing either a transition in milk functionality to accommodate carbohydrate-rich secretions as lactation progresses, or a potentially novel way of looking at the metabolic state of the mammary tissue. Lately, a number of extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins are found to be in higher abundance in transitional milk and may be relevant to the development of infants' gastrointestinal tract in early life. In contrast, the ECM protein fibronectin and several of the actin cytoskeleton proteins that it regulates are more abundant in mature milk, which may indicate the important functional role for milk in regulating reactive oxygen species.

  18. Analysis of septins across kingdoms reveals orthology and new motifs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Malmberg Russell L

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Septins are cytoskeletal GTPase proteins first discovered in the fungus Saccharomyces cerevisiae where they organize the septum and link nuclear division with cell division. More recently septins have been found in animals where they are important in processes ranging from actin and microtubule organization to embryonic patterning and where defects in septins have been implicated in human disease. Previous studies suggested that many animal septins fell into independent evolutionary groups, confounding cross-kingdom comparison. Results In the current work, we identified 162 septins from fungi, microsporidia and animals and analyzed their phylogenetic relationships. There was support for five groups of septins with orthology between kingdoms. Group 1 (which includes S. cerevisiae Cdc10p and human Sept9 and Group 2 (which includes S. cerevisiae Cdc3p and human Sept7 contain sequences from fungi and animals. Group 3 (which includes S. cerevisiae Cdc11p and Group 4 (which includes S. cerevisiae Cdc12p contain sequences from fungi and microsporidia. Group 5 (which includes Aspergillus nidulans AspE contains sequences from filamentous fungi. We suggest a modified nomenclature based on these phylogenetic relationships. Comparative sequence alignments revealed septin derivatives of already known G1, G3 and G4 GTPase motifs, four new motifs from two to twelve amino acids long and six conserved single amino acid positions. One of these new motifs is septin-specific and several are group specific. Conclusion Our studies provide an evolutionary history for this important family of proteins and a framework and consistent nomenclature for comparison of septin orthologs across kingdoms.

  19. Isotope analysis reveals foraging area dichotomy for atlantic leatherback turtles.

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    Stéphane Caut

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The leatherback turtle (Dermochelys coriacea has undergone a dramatic decline over the last 25 years, and this is believed to be primarily the result of mortality associated with fisheries bycatch followed by egg and nesting female harvest. Atlantic leatherback turtles undertake long migrations across ocean basins from subtropical and tropical nesting beaches to productive frontal areas. Migration between two nesting seasons can last 2 or 3 years, a time period termed the remigration interval (RI. Recent satellite transmitter data revealed that Atlantic leatherbacks follow two major dispersion patterns after nesting season, through the North Gulf Stream area or more eastward across the North Equatorial Current. However, information on the whole RI is lacking, precluding the accurate identification of feeding areas where conservation measures may need to be applied. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using stable isotopes as dietary tracers we determined the characteristics of feeding grounds of leatherback females nesting in French Guiana. During migration, 3-year RI females differed from 2-year RI females in their isotope values, implying differences in their choice of feeding habitats (offshore vs. more coastal and foraging latitude (North Atlantic vs. West African coasts, respectively. Egg-yolk and blood isotope values are correlated in nesting females, indicating that egg analysis is a useful tool for assessing isotope values in these turtles, including adults when not available. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFI