Sample records for eukaryotic gene structure

  1. Automated Eukaryotic Gene Structure Annotation Using EVidenceModeler and the Program to Assemble Spliced Alignments

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    Haas, B J; Salzberg, S L; Zhu, W; Pertea, M; Allen, J E; Orvis, J; White, O; Buell, C R; Wortman, J R


    EVidenceModeler (EVM) is presented as an automated eukaryotic gene structure annotation tool that reports eukaryotic gene structures as a weighted consensus of all available evidence. EVM, when combined with the Program to Assemble Spliced Alignments (PASA), yields a comprehensive, configurable annotation system that predicts protein-coding genes and alternatively spliced isoforms. Our experiments on both rice and human genome sequences demonstrate that EVM produces automated gene structure annotation approaching the quality of manual curation.

  2. Structural disorder in eukaryotes.

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    Rita Pancsa

    Full Text Available Based on early bioinformatic studies on a handful of species, the frequency of structural disorder of proteins is generally thought to be much higher in eukaryotes than in prokaryotes. To refine this view, we present here a comparative prediction study and analysis of 194 fully described eukaryotic proteomes and 87 reference prokaryotes for structural disorder. We found that structural disorder does distinguish eukaryotes from prokaryotes, but its frequency spans a very wide range in the two superkingdoms that largely overlap. The number of disordered binding regions and different Pfam domain types also contribute to distinguish eukaryotes from prokaryotes. Unexpectedly, the highest levels--and highest variability--of predicted disorder is found in protists, i.e. single-celled eukaryotes, often surpassing more complex eukaryote organisms, plants and animals. This trend contrasts with that of the number of domain types, which increases rather monotonously toward more complex organisms. The level of structural disorder appears to be strongly correlated with lifestyle, because some obligate intracellular parasites and endosymbionts have the lowest levels, whereas host-changing parasites have the highest level of predicted disorder. We conclude that protists have been the evolutionary hot-bed of experimentation with structural disorder, in a period when structural disorder was actively invented and the major functional classes of disordered proteins established.

  3. Structural and dynamic characterization of eukaryotic gene regulatory protein domains in solution

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    Lee, Andrew Loyd [Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA (United States). Dept. of Chemistry


    Solution NMR was primarily used to characterize structure and dynamics in two different eukaryotic protein systems: the δ-Al-ε activation domain from c-jun and the Drosophila RNA-binding protein Sex-lethal. The second system is the Drosophila Sex-lethal (Sxl) protein, an RNA-binding protein which is the ``master switch`` in sex determination. Sxl contains two adjacent RNA-binding domains (RBDs) of the RNP consensus-type. The NMR spectrum of the second RBD (Sxl-RBD2) was assigned using multidimensional heteronuclear NMR, and an intermediate-resolution family of structures was calculated from primarily NOE distance restraints. The overall fold was determined to be similar to other RBDs: a βαβ-βαβ pattern of secondary structure, with the two helices packed against a 4-stranded anti-parallel β-sheet. In addition 15N T1, T2, and 15N/1H NOE relaxation measurements were carried out to characterize the backbone dynamics of Sxl-RBD2 in solution. RNA corresponding to the polypyrimidine tract of transformer pre-mRNA was generated and titrated into 3 different Sxl-RBD protein constructs. Combining Sxl-RBD1+2 (bht RBDs) with this RNA formed a specific, high affinity protein/RNA complex that is amenable to further NMR characterization. The backbone 1H, 13C, and 15N resonances of Sxl-RBD1+2 were assigned using a triple-resonance approach, and 15N relaxation experiments were carried out to characterize the backbone dynamics of this complex. The changes in chemical shift in Sxl-RBD1+2 upon binding RNA are observed using Sxl-RBD2 as a substitute for unbound Sxl-RBD1+2. This allowed the binding interface to be qualitatively mapped for the second domain.

  4. Structure and function of eukaryotic chromosomes

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    Hennig, W.


    Contents: Introduction; Polytene Chromosomel Giant Chromosomes in Ciliates; The sp-I Genes in the Balbiani Rings of Chironomus Salivary Glands; The White Locus of Drosophila Melanogaster; The Genetic and Molecular Organization of the Dense Cluster of Functionally Related Vital Genes in the DOPA Decarboxylase Region of the Drosophila melanogaster Genome; Heat Shock Puffs and Response to Environmental Stress; The Y Chromosomal Lampbrush Loops of Drosophila; Contributions of Electron Microscopic Spreading Preparations (''Miller Spreads'') to the Analysis of Chromosome Structure; Replication of DNA in Eukaryotic Chromosomes; Gene Amplification in Dipteran Chromosomes; The Significance of Plant Transposable Elements in Biologically Relevant Processes; Arrangement of Chromosomes in Interphase Cell Nuclei; Heterochromatin and the Phenomenon of Chromosome Banding; Multiple Nonhistone Protein-DNA Complexes in Chromatin Regulate the Cell- and Stage-Specific Activity of an Eukaryotic Gene; Genetics of Sex Determination in Eukaryotes; Application of Basic Chromosome Research in Biotechnology and Medicine. This book presents an overview of various aspects of chromosome research.

  5. Horizontal gene transfer in eukaryotic plant pathogens. (United States)

    Soanes, Darren; Richards, Thomas A


    Gene transfer has been identified as a prevalent and pervasive phenomenon and an important source of genomic innovation in bacteria. The role of gene transfer in microbial eukaryotes seems to be of a reduced magnitude but in some cases can drive important evolutionary innovations, such as new functions that underpin the colonization of different niches. The aim of this review is to summarize published cases that support the hypothesis that horizontal gene transfer (HGT) has played a role in the evolution of phytopathogenic traits in fungi and oomycetes. Our survey of the literature identifies 46 proposed cases of transfer of genes that have a putative or experimentally demonstrable phytopathogenic function. When considering the life-cycle steps through which a pathogen must progress, the majority of the HGTs identified are associated with invading, degrading, and manipulating the host. Taken together, these data suggest HGT has played a role in shaping how fungi and oomycetes colonize plant hosts.

  6. Patterns of prokaryotic lateral gene transfers affecting parasitic microbial eukaryotes

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    Alsmark, Cecilia; Foster, Peter G; Sicheritz-Pontén, Thomas


    BACKGROUND: The influence of lateral gene transfer on gene origins and biology in eukaryotes is poorly understood compared with those of prokaryotes. A number of independent investigations focusing on specific genes, individual genomes, or specific functional categories from various eukaryotes have...... indicated that lateral gene transfer does indeed affect eukaryotic genomes. However, the lack of common methodology and criteria in these studies makes it difficult to assess the general importance and influence of lateral gene transfer on eukaryotic genome evolution. RESULTS: We used a phylogenomic...... approach to systematically investigate lateral gene transfer affecting the proteomes of thirteen, mainly parasitic, microbial eukaryotes, representing four of the six eukaryotic super-groups. All of the genomes investigated have been significantly affected by prokaryote-to-eukaryote lateral gene transfers...

  7. Horizontal gene transfer in eukaryotes: The weak-link model (United States)

    Huang, Jinling


    The significance of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) in eukaryotic evolution remains controversial. Although many eukaryotic genes are of bacterial origin, they are often interpreted as being derived from mitochondria or plastids. Because of their fixed gene pool and gene loss, however, mitochondria and plastids alone cannot adequately explain the presence of all, or even the majority, of bacterial genes in eukaryotes. Available data indicate that no insurmountable barrier to HGT exists, even in complex multicellular eukaryotes. In addition, the discovery of both recent and ancient HGT events in all major eukaryotic groups suggests that HGT has been a regular occurrence throughout the history of eukaryotic evolution. A model of HGT is proposed that suggests both unicellular and early developmental stages as likely entry points for foreign genes into multicellular eukaryotes. PMID:24037739

  8. The Center for Eukaryotic Structural Genomics. (United States)

    Markley, John L; Aceti, David J; Bingman, Craig A; Fox, Brian G; Frederick, Ronnie O; Makino, Shin-ichi; Nichols, Karl W; Phillips, George N; Primm, John G; Sahu, Sarata C; Vojtik, Frank C; Volkman, Brian F; Wrobel, Russell L; Zolnai, Zsolt


    The Center for Eukaryotic Structural Genomics (CESG) is a "specialized" or "technology development" center supported by the Protein Structure Initiative (PSI). CESG's mission is to develop improved methods for the high-throughput solution of structures from eukaryotic proteins, with a very strong weighting toward human proteins of biomedical relevance. During the first three years of PSI-2, CESG selected targets representing 601 proteins from Homo sapiens, 33 from mouse, 10 from rat, 139 from Galdieria sulphuraria, 35 from Arabidopsis thaliana, 96 from Cyanidioschyzon merolae, 80 from Plasmodium falciparum, 24 from yeast, and about 25 from other eukaryotes. Notably, 30% of all structures of human proteins solved by the PSI Centers were determined at CESG. Whereas eukaryotic proteins generally are considered to be much more challenging targets than prokaryotic proteins, the technology now in place at CESG yields success rates that are comparable to those of the large production centers that work primarily on prokaryotic proteins. We describe here the technological innovations that underlie CESG's platforms for bioinformatics and laboratory information management, target selection, protein production, and structure determination by X-ray crystallography or NMR spectroscopy.

  9. Endosymbiotic gene transfer from prokaryotic pangenomes: Inherited chimerism in eukaryotes. (United States)

    Ku, Chuan; Nelson-Sathi, Shijulal; Roettger, Mayo; Garg, Sriram; Hazkani-Covo, Einat; Martin, William F


    Endosymbiotic theory in eukaryotic-cell evolution rests upon a foundation of three cornerstone partners--the plastid (a cyanobacterium), the mitochondrion (a proteobacterium), and its host (an archaeon)--and carries a corollary that, over time, the majority of genes once present in the organelle genomes were relinquished to the chromosomes of the host (endosymbiotic gene transfer). However, notwithstanding eukaryote-specific gene inventions, single-gene phylogenies have never traced eukaryotic genes to three single prokaryotic sources, an issue that hinges crucially upon factors influencing phylogenetic inference. In the age of genomes, single-gene trees, once used to test the predictions of endosymbiotic theory, now spawn new theories that stand to eventually replace endosymbiotic theory with descriptive, gene tree-based variants featuring supernumerary symbionts: prokaryotic partners distinct from the cornerstone trio and whose existence is inferred solely from single-gene trees. We reason that the endosymbiotic ancestors of mitochondria and chloroplasts brought into the eukaryotic--and plant and algal--lineage a genome-sized sample of genes from the proteobacterial and cyanobacterial pangenomes of their respective day and that, even if molecular phylogeny were artifact-free, sampling prokaryotic pangenomes through endosymbiotic gene transfer would lead to inherited chimerism. Recombination in prokaryotes (transduction, conjugation, transformation) differs from recombination in eukaryotes (sex). Prokaryotic recombination leads to pangenomes, and eukaryotic recombination leads to vertical inheritance. Viewed from the perspective of endosymbiotic theory, the critical transition at the eukaryote origin that allowed escape from Muller's ratchet--the origin of eukaryotic recombination, or sex--might have required surprisingly little evolutionary innovation.

  10. Gene name ambiguity of eukaryotic nomenclatures. (United States)

    Chen, Lifeng; Liu, Hongfang; Friedman, Carol


    With more and more scientific literature published online, the effective management and reuse of this knowledge has become problematic. Natural language processing (NLP) may be a potential solution by extracting, structuring and organizing biomedical information in online literature in a timely manner. One essential task is to recognize and identify genomic entities in text. 'Recognition' can be accomplished using pattern matching and machine learning. But for 'identification' these techniques are not adequate. In order to identify genomic entities, NLP needs a comprehensive resource that specifies and classifies genomic entities as they occur in text and that associates them with normalized terms and also unique identifiers so that the extracted entities are well defined. Online organism databases are an excellent resource to create such a lexical resource. However, gene name ambiguity is a serious problem because it affects the appropriate identification of gene entities. In this paper, we explore the extent of the problem and suggest ways to address it. We obtained gene information from 21 organisms and quantified naming ambiguities within species, across species, with English words and with medical terms. When the case (of letters) was retained, official symbols displayed negligible intra-species ambiguity (0.02%) and modest ambiguities with general English words (0.57%) and medical terms (1.01%). In contrast, the across-species ambiguity was high (14.20%). The inclusion of gene synonyms increased intra-species ambiguity substantially and full names contributed greatly to gene-medical-term ambiguity. A comprehensive lexical resource that covers gene information for the 21 organisms was then created and used to identify gene names by using a straightforward string matching program to process 45,000 abstracts associated with the mouse model organism while ignoring case and gene names that were also English words. We found that 85.1% of correctly retrieved mouse

  11. Eukaryotic and Prokaryotic Cytoskeletons: Structure and Mechanics (United States)

    Gopinathan, Ajay


    The eukaryotic cytoskeleton is an assembly of filamentous proteins and a host of associated proteins that collectively serve functional needs ranging from spatial organization and transport to the production and transmission of forces. These systems can exhibit a wide variety of non-equilibrium, self-assembled phases depending on context and function. While much recent progress has been made in understanding the self-organization, rheology and nonlinear mechanical properties of such active systems, in this talk, we will concentrate on some emerging aspects of cytoskeletal physics that are promising. One such aspect is the influence of cytoskeletal network topology and its dynamics on both active and passive intracellular transport. Another aspect we will highlight is the interplay between chirality of filaments, their elasticity and their interactions with the membrane that can lead to novel conformational states with functional implications. Finally we will consider homologs of cytoskeletal proteins in bacteria, which are involved in templating cell growth, segregating genetic material and force production, which we will discuss with particular reference to contractile forces during cell division. These prokaryotic structures function in remarkably similar yet fascinatingly different ways from their eukaryotic counterparts and can enrich our understanding of cytoskeletal functioning as a whole.

  12. Applications of Recombinant DNA Technology in Gastrointestinal Medicine and Hepatology: Basic Paradigms of Molecular Cell Biology. Part A: Eukaryotic Gene Structure and DNA Replication

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    Gary E Wild


    Full Text Available Progress in the basic sciences of cell and molecular biology has provided an exciting dimension that has translated into clinically relevant information in every medical subspecialty. Importantly, the application of recombinant DNA technology has played a major role in unravelling the intricacies related to the molecular pathophysiology of disease. This series of review articles constitutes a framework for the integration of the database of new information into the core knowledge base of concepts related to the pathogenesis of gastrointestinal disorders and liver disease. The goal of this series of three articles is to review the basic principles of eukaryotic gene expression. The first article examines the role of DNA in directing the flow of genetic information in eukaryotic cells.

  13. Massive expansion of the calpain gene family in unicellular eukaryotes

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    Zhao Sen


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Calpains are Ca2+-dependent cysteine proteases that participate in a range of crucial cellular processes. Dysfunction of these enzymes may cause, for instance, life-threatening diseases in humans, the loss of sex determination in nematodes and embryo lethality in plants. Although the calpain family is well characterized in animal and plant model organisms, there is a great lack of knowledge about these genes in unicellular eukaryote species (i.e. protists. Here, we study the distribution and evolution of calpain genes in a wide range of eukaryote genomes from major branches in the tree of life. Results Our investigations reveal 24 types of protein domains that are combined with the calpain-specific catalytic domain CysPc. In total we identify 41 different calpain domain architectures, 28 of these domain combinations have not been previously described. Based on our phylogenetic inferences, we propose that at least four calpain variants were established in the early evolution of eukaryotes, most likely before the radiation of all the major supergroups of eukaryotes. Many domains associated with eukaryotic calpain genes can be found among eubacteria or archaebacteria but never in combination with the CysPc domain. Conclusions The analyses presented here show that ancient modules present in prokaryotes, and a few de novo eukaryote domains, have been assembled into many novel domain combinations along the evolutionary history of eukaryotes. Some of the new calpain genes show a narrow distribution in a few branches in the tree of life, likely representing lineage-specific innovations. Hence, the functionally important classical calpain genes found among humans and vertebrates make up only a tiny fraction of the calpain family. In fact, a massive expansion of the calpain family occurred by domain shuffling among unicellular eukaryotes and contributed to a wealth of functionally different genes.

  14. Integrated databases and computer systems for studying eukaryotic gene expression. (United States)

    Kolchanov, N A; Ponomarenko, M P; Frolov, A S; Ananko, E A; Kolpakov, F A; Ignatieva, E V; Podkolodnaya, O A; Goryachkovskaya, T N; Stepanenko, I L; Merkulova, T I; Babenko, V V; Ponomarenko, Y V; Kochetov, A V; Podkolodny, N L; Vorobiev, D V; Lavryushev, S V; Grigorovich, D A; Kondrakhin, Y V; Milanesi, L; Wingender, E; Solovyev, V; Overton, G C


    The goal of the work was to develop a WWW-oriented computer system providing a maximal integration of informational and software resources on the regulation of gene expression and navigation through them. Rapid growth of the variety and volume of information accumulated in the databases on regulation of gene expression necessarily requires the development of computer systems for automated discovery of the knowledge that can be further used for analysis of regulatory genomic sequences. The GeneExpress system developed includes the following major informational and software modules: (1) Transcription Regulation (TRRD) module, which contains the databases on transcription regulatory regions of eukaryotic genes and TRRD Viewer for data visualization; (2) Site Activity Prediction (ACTIVITY), the module for analysis of functional site activity and its prediction; (3) Site Recognition module, which comprises (a) B-DNA-VIDEO system for detecting the conformational and physicochemical properties of DNA sites significant for their recognition, (b) Consensus and Weight Matrices (ConsFrec) and (c) Transcription Factor Binding Sites Recognition (TFBSR) systems for detecting conservative contextual regions of functional sites and their recognition; (4) Gene Networks (GeneNet), which contains an object-oriented database accumulating the data on gene networks and signal transduction pathways, and the Java-based Viewer for exploration and visualization of the GeneNet information; (5) mRNA Translation (Leader mRNA), designed to analyze structural and contextual properties of mRNA 5'-untranslated regions (5'-UTRs) and predict their translation efficiency; (6) other program modules designed to study the structure-function organization of regulatory genomic sequences and regulatory proteins. GeneExpress is available at http://wwwmgs.bionet.nsc. ru/systems/GeneExpress/ and the links to the mirror site(s) can be found at ++.

  15. Phylogenetic analysis of ferlin genes reveals ancient eukaryotic origins

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    Lek Monkol


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The ferlin gene family possesses a rare and identifying feature consisting of multiple tandem C2 domains and a C-terminal transmembrane domain. Much currently remains unknown about the fundamental function of this gene family, however, mutations in its two most well-characterised members, dysferlin and otoferlin, have been implicated in human disease. The availability of genome sequences from a wide range of species makes it possible to explore the evolution of the ferlin family, providing contextual insight into characteristic features that define the ferlin gene family in its present form in humans. Results Ferlin genes were detected from all species of representative phyla, with two ferlin subgroups partitioned within the ferlin phylogenetic tree based on the presence or absence of a DysF domain. Invertebrates generally possessed two ferlin genes (one with DysF and one without, with six ferlin genes in most vertebrates (three DysF, three non-DysF. Expansion of the ferlin gene family is evident between the divergence of lamprey (jawless vertebrates and shark (cartilaginous fish. Common to almost all ferlins is an N-terminal C2-FerI-C2 sandwich, a FerB motif, and two C-terminal C2 domains (C2E and C2F adjacent to the transmembrane domain. Preservation of these structural elements throughout eukaryotic evolution suggests a fundamental role of these motifs for ferlin function. In contrast, DysF, C2DE, and FerA are optional, giving rise to subtle differences in domain topologies of ferlin genes. Despite conservation of multiple C2 domains in all ferlins, the C-terminal C2 domains (C2E and C2F displayed higher sequence conservation and greater conservation of putative calcium binding residues across paralogs and orthologs. Interestingly, the two most studied non-mammalian ferlins (Fer-1 and Misfire in model organisms C. elegans and D. melanogaster, present as outgroups in the phylogenetic analysis, with results suggesting

  16. An Evolutionary Network of Genes Present in the Eukaryote Common Ancestor Polls Genomes on Eukaryotic and Mitochondrial Origin (United States)

    Thiergart, Thorsten; Landan, Giddy; Schenk, Marc; Dagan, Tal; Martin, William F.


    To test the predictions of competing and mutually exclusive hypotheses for the origin of eukaryotes, we identified from a sample of 27 sequenced eukaryotic and 994 sequenced prokaryotic genomes 571 genes that were present in the eukaryote common ancestor and that have homologues among eubacterial and archaebacterial genomes. Maximum-likelihood trees identified the prokaryotic genomes that most frequently contained genes branching as the sister to the eukaryotic nuclear homologues. Among the archaebacteria, euryarchaeote genomes most frequently harbored the sister to the eukaryotic nuclear gene, whereas among eubacteria, the α-proteobacteria were most frequently represented within the sister group. Only 3 genes out of 571 gave a 3-domain tree. Homologues from α-proteobacterial genomes that branched as the sister to nuclear genes were found more frequently in genomes of facultatively anaerobic members of the rhiozobiales and rhodospirilliales than in obligate intracellular ricketttsial parasites. Following α-proteobacteria, the most frequent eubacterial sister lineages were γ-proteobacteria, δ-proteobacteria, and firmicutes, which were also the prokaryote genomes least frequently found as monophyletic groups in our trees. Although all 22 higher prokaryotic taxa sampled (crenarchaeotes, γ-proteobacteria, spirochaetes, chlamydias, etc.) harbor genes that branch as the sister to homologues present in the eukaryotic common ancestor, that is not evidence of 22 different prokaryotic cells participating at eukaryote origins because prokaryotic “lineages” have laterally acquired genes for more than 1.5 billion years since eukaryote origins. The data underscore the archaebacterial (host) nature of the eukaryotic informational genes and the eubacterial (mitochondrial) nature of eukaryotic energy metabolism. The network linking genes of the eukaryote ancestor to contemporary homologues distributed across prokaryotic genomes elucidates eukaryote gene origins in a

  17. Distinct gene number-genome size relationships for eukaryotes and non-eukaryotes: gene content estimation for dinoflagellate genomes.

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    Yubo Hou

    Full Text Available The ability to predict gene content is highly desirable for characterization of not-yet sequenced genomes like those of dinoflagellates. Using data from completely sequenced and annotated genomes from phylogenetically diverse lineages, we investigated the relationship between gene content and genome size using regression analyses. Distinct relationships between log(10-transformed protein-coding gene number (Y' versus log(10-transformed genome size (X', genome size in kbp were found for eukaryotes and non-eukaryotes. Eukaryotes best fit a logarithmic model, Y' = ln(-46.200+22.678X', whereas non-eukaryotes a linear model, Y' = 0.045+0.977X', both with high significance (p0.91. Total gene number shows similar trends in both groups to their respective protein coding regressions. The distinct correlations reflect lower and decreasing gene-coding percentages as genome size increases in eukaryotes (82%-1% compared to higher and relatively stable percentages in prokaryotes and viruses (97%-47%. The eukaryotic regression models project that the smallest dinoflagellate genome (3x10(6 kbp contains 38,188 protein-coding (40,086 total genes and the largest (245x10(6 kbp 87,688 protein-coding (92,013 total genes, corresponding to 1.8% and 0.05% gene-coding percentages. These estimates do not likely represent extraordinarily high functional diversity of the encoded proteome but rather highly redundant genomes as evidenced by high gene copy numbers documented for various dinoflagellate species.

  18. Silencing or knocking out eukaryotic gene expression by oligodeoxynucleotide decoys. (United States)

    Cutroneo, Kenneth R; Ehrlich, H


    The elucidation of molecular and signaling pathways in eukaryotic cells is often achieved by targeting regulatory element(s) found in the promoter or the enhancer region of eukaryotic gene(s) using a double-stranded (ds) oligodeoxynucleotide (ODN) containing a specific cis-element. Our laboratory is focusing on dsODN decoys containing the TGF-beta element as a novel nonsteroidal antifibrotic for achieving normal wound healing. In the model systems discussed, there is either a specific gene possessing a specific cis-element or a cluster of genes with one gene containing the consensus cis-element. The rest of the genes in the cluster contain the cis-elements homologous to this consensus element, which allows for dsODN decoy regulation of a gene cluster at one time.

  19. Noise minimization in eukaryotic gene expression

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    Fraser, Hunter B.; Hirsh, Aaron E.; Giaever, Guri; Kumm, Jochen; Eisen, Michael B.


    All organisms have elaborate mechanisms to control rates of protein production. However, protein production is also subject to stochastic fluctuations, or noise. Several recent studies in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Escherichia coli have investigated the relationship between transcription and translation rates and stochastic fluctuations in protein levels, or more generally, how such randomness is a function of intrinsic and extrinsic factors. However, the fundamental question of whether stochasticity in protein expression is generally biologically relevant has not been addressed, and it remains unknown whether random noise in the protein production rate of most genes significantly affects the fitness of any organism. We propose that organisms should be particularly sensitive to variation in the protein levels of two classes of genes: genes whose deletion is lethal to the organism and genes that encode subunits of multiprotein complexes. Using an experimentally verified model of stochastic gene expression in S. cerevisiae, we estimate the noise in protein production for nearly every yeast gene, and confirm our prediction that the production of essential and complex-forming proteins involves lower levels of noise than does the production of most other genes. Our results support the hypothesis that noise in gene expression is a biologically important variable, is generally detrimental to organismal fitness, and is subject to natural selection.

  20. Automatic generation of gene finders for eukaryotic species

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    Terkelsen, Kasper Munch; Krogh, A.


    Background The number of sequenced eukaryotic genomes is rapidly increasing. This means that over time it will be hard to keep supplying customised gene finders for each genome. This calls for procedures to automatically generate species-specific gene finders and to re-train them as the quantity...... length distributions. The performance of each individual gene predictor on each individual genome is comparable to the best of the manually optimised species-specific gene finders. It is shown that species-specific gene finders are superior to gene finders trained on other species....

  1. Eukaryote-to-eukaryote gene transfer gives rise to genome mosaicism in euglenids

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    Weber Andreas PM


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Euglenophytes are a group of photosynthetic flagellates possessing a plastid derived from a green algal endosymbiont, which was incorporated into an ancestral host cell via secondary endosymbiosis. However, the impact of endosymbiosis on the euglenophyte nuclear genome is not fully understood due to its complex nature as a 'hybrid' of a non-photosynthetic host cell and a secondary endosymbiont. Results We analyzed an EST dataset of the model euglenophyte Euglena gracilis using a gene mining program designed to detect laterally transferred genes. We found E. gracilis genes showing affinity not only with green algae, from which the secondary plastid in euglenophytes evolved, but also red algae and/or secondary algae containing red algal-derived plastids. Phylogenetic analyses of these 'red lineage' genes suggest that E. gracilis acquired at least 14 genes via eukaryote-to-eukaryote lateral gene transfer from algal sources other than the green algal endosymbiont that gave rise to its current plastid. We constructed an EST library of the aplastidic euglenid Peranema trichophorum, which is a eukaryovorous relative of euglenophytes, and also identified 'red lineage' genes in its genome. Conclusions Our data show genome mosaicism in E. gracilis and P. trichophorum. One possible explanation for the presence of these genes in these organisms is that some or all of them were independently acquired by lateral gene transfer and contributed to the successful integration and functioning of the green algal endosymbiont as a secondary plastid. Alternative hypotheses include the presence of a phagocytosed alga as the single source of those genes, or a cryptic tertiary endosymbiont harboring secondary plastid of red algal origin, which the eukaryovorous ancestor of euglenophytes had acquired prior to the secondary endosymbiosis of a green alga.

  2. Horizontal gene acquisitions by eukaryotes as drivers of adaptive evolution. (United States)

    Schönknecht, Gerald; Weber, Andreas P M; Lercher, Martin J


    In contrast to vertical gene transfer from parent to offspring, horizontal (or lateral) gene transfer moves genetic information between different species. Bacteria and archaea often adapt through horizontal gene transfer. Recent analyses indicate that eukaryotic genomes, too, have acquired numerous genes via horizontal transfer from prokaryotes and other lineages. Based on this we raise the hypothesis that horizontally acquired genes may have contributed more to adaptive evolution of eukaryotes than previously assumed. Current candidate sets of horizontally acquired eukaryotic genes may just be the tip of an iceberg. We have recently shown that adaptation of the thermoacidophilic red alga Galdieria sulphuraria to its hot, acid, toxic-metal laden, volcanic environment was facilitated by the acquisition of numerous genes from extremophile bacteria and archaea. Other recently published examples of horizontal acquisitions involved in adaptation include ice-binding proteins in marine algae, enzymes for carotenoid biosynthesis in aphids, and genes involved in fungal metabolism. Editor's suggested further reading in BioEssays Jumping the fine LINE between species: Horizontal transfer of transposable elements in animals catalyses genome evolution Abstract. © 2014 WILEY Periodicals, Inc.

  3. Chromatin—a global buffer for eukaryotic gene control

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    Yuri M. Moshkin


    Full Text Available Most of eukaryotic DNA is embedded into nucleosome arrays formed by DNA wrapped around a core histone octamer. Nucleosome is a fundamental repeating unit of chromatin guarding access to the genetic information. Here, I will discuss two facets of nucleosome in eukaryotic gene control. On the one hand, nucleosome acts as a regulatory unit, which controls gene switches through a set of post-translational modifications occurring on histone tails. On the other hand, global configuration of nucleosome arrays with respect to nucleosome positioning, spacing and turnover acts as a tuning parameter for all genomic functions. A “histone code” hypothesis extents the Jacob-Monod model for eukaryotic gene control; however, when considering factors capable of reconfiguring entire nucleosome array, such as ATP-dependent chromatin remodelers, this model becomes limited. Global changes in nucleosome arrays will be sensed by every gene, yet the transcriptional responses might be specific and appear as gene targeted events. What determines such specificity is unclear, but it’s likely to depend on initial gene settings, such as availability of transcription factors, and on configuration of new nucleosome array state.

  4. Evolution of filamentous plant pathogens: gene exchange across eukaryotic kingdoms. (United States)

    Richards, Thomas A; Dacks, Joel B; Jenkinson, Joanna M; Thornton, Christopher R; Talbot, Nicholas J


    Filamentous fungi and oomycetes are eukaryotic microorganisms that grow by producing networks of thread-like hyphae, which secrete enzymes to break down complex nutrients, such as wood and plant material, and recover the resulting simple sugars and amino acids by osmotrophy. These organisms are extremely similar in both appearance and lifestyle and include some of the most economically important plant pathogens . However, the morphological similarity of fungi and oomycetes is misleading because they represent some of the most distantly related eukaryote evolutionary groupings, and their shared osmotrophic growth habit is interpreted as being the result of convergent evolution . The fungi branch with the animals, whereas the oomycetes branch with photosynthetic algae as part of the Chromalveolata . In this report, we provide strong phylogenetic evidence that multiple horizontal gene transfers (HGT) have occurred from filamentous ascomycete fungi to the distantly related oomycetes. We also present evidence that a subset of the associated gene families was initially the product of prokaryote-to-fungi HGT. The predicted functions of the gene products associated with fungi-to-oomycete HGT suggest that this process has played a significant role in the evolution of the osmotrophic, filamentous lifestyle on two separate branches of the eukaryote tree.

  5. Evolution of glutamate dehydrogenase genes: evidence for lateral gene transfer within and between prokaryotes and eukaryotes

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    Roger Andrew J


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Lateral gene transfer can introduce genes with novel functions into genomes or replace genes with functionally similar orthologs or paralogs. Here we present a study of the occurrence of the latter gene replacement phenomenon in the four gene families encoding different classes of glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH, to evaluate and compare the patterns and rates of lateral gene transfer (LGT in prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Results We extend the taxon sampling of gdh genes with nine new eukaryotic sequences and examine the phylogenetic distribution pattern of the various GDH classes in combination with maximum likelihood phylogenetic analyses. The distribution pattern analyses indicate that LGT has played a significant role in the evolution of the four gdh gene families. Indeed, a number of gene transfer events are identified by phylogenetic analyses, including numerous prokaryotic intra-domain transfers, some prokaryotic inter-domain transfers and several inter-domain transfers between prokaryotes and microbial eukaryotes (protists. Conclusion LGT has apparently affected eukaryotes and prokaryotes to a similar extent within the gdh gene families. In the absence of indications that the evolution of the gdh gene families is radically different from other families, these results suggest that gene transfer might be an important evolutionary mechanism in microbial eukaryote genome evolution.

  6. Multiple Origins of Eukaryotic cox15 Suggest Horizontal Gene Transfer from Bacteria to Jakobid Mitochondrial DNA. (United States)

    He, Ding; Fu, Cheng-Jie; Baldauf, Sandra L


    The most gene-rich and bacterial-like mitochondrial genomes known are those of Jakobida (Excavata). Of these, the most extreme example to date is the Andalucia godoyi mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), including a cox15 gene encoding the respiratory enzyme heme A synthase (HAS), which is nuclear-encoded in nearly all other mitochondriate eukaryotes. Thus cox15 in eukaryotes appears to be a classic example of mitochondrion-to-nucleus (endosymbiotic) gene transfer, with A. godoyi uniquely retaining the ancestral state. However, our analyses reveal two highly distinct HAS types (encoded by cox15-1 and cox15-2 genes) and identify A. godoyi mitochondrial cox15-encoded HAS as type-1 and all other eukaryotic cox15-encoded HAS as type-2. Molecular phylogeny places the two HAS types in widely separated clades with eukaryotic type-2 HAS clustering with the bulk of α-proteobacteria (>670 sequences), whereas A. godoyi type-1 HAS clusters with an eclectic set of bacteria and archaea including two α-proteobacteria missing from the type-2 clade. This wide phylogenetic separation of the two HAS types is reinforced by unique features of their predicted protein structures. Meanwhile, RNA-sequencing and genomic analyses fail to detect either cox15 type in the nuclear genome of any jakobid including A. godoyi. This suggests that not only is cox15-1 a relatively recent acquisition unique to the Andalucia lineage but also the jakobid last common ancestor probably lacked both cox15 types. These results indicate that uptake of foreign genes by mtDNA is more taxonomically widespread than previously thought. They also caution against the assumption that all α-proteobacterial-like features of eukaryotes are ancient remnants of endosymbiosis. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail:

  7. Analysis of gene order conservation in eukaryotes identifies transcriptionally and functionally linked genes.

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    Marcela Dávila López

    Full Text Available The order of genes in eukaryotes is not entirely random. Studies of gene order conservation are important to understand genome evolution and to reveal mechanisms why certain neighboring genes are more difficult to separate during evolution. Here, genome-wide gene order information was compiled for 64 species, representing a wide variety of eukaryotic phyla. This information is presented in a browser where gene order may be displayed and compared between species. Factors related to non-random gene order in eukaryotes were examined by considering pairs of neighboring genes. The evolutionary conservation of gene pairs was studied with respect to relative transcriptional direction, intergenic distance and functional relationship as inferred by gene ontology. The results show that among gene pairs that are conserved the divergently and co-directionally transcribed genes are much more common than those that are convergently transcribed. Furthermore, highly conserved pairs, in particular those of fungi, are characterized by a short intergenic distance. Finally, gene pairs of metazoa and fungi that are evolutionary conserved and that are divergently transcribed are much more likely to be related by function as compared to poorly conserved gene pairs. One example is the ribosomal protein gene pair L13/S16, which is unusual as it occurs both in fungi and alveolates. A specific functional relationship between these two proteins is also suggested by the fact that they are part of the same operon in both eubacteria and archaea. In conclusion, factors associated with non-random gene order in eukaryotes include relative gene orientation, intergenic distance and functional relationships. It seems likely that certain pairs of genes are conserved because the genes involved have a transcriptional and/or functional relationship. The results also indicate that studies of gene order conservation aid in identifying genes that are related in terms of transcriptional

  8. WebAUGUSTUS—a web service for training AUGUSTUS and predicting genes in eukaryotes (United States)

    Hoff, Katharina J.; Stanke, Mario


    The prediction of protein coding genes is an important step in the annotation of newly sequenced and assembled genomes. AUGUSTUS is one of the most accurate tools for eukaryotic gene prediction. Here, we present WebAUGUSTUS, a web interface for training AUGUSTUS and predicting genes with AUGUSTUS. Depending on the needs of the user, WebAUGUSTUS generates training gene structures automatically. Besides a genome file, either a file with expressed sequence tags or a file with protein sequences is required for this step. Alternatively, it is possible to submit an externally generated training gene structure file and a genome file. The web service optimizes AUGUSTUS parameters and predicts genes with those parameters. WebAUGUSTUS is available at PMID:23700307

  9. WebAUGUSTUS--a web service for training AUGUSTUS and predicting genes in eukaryotes. (United States)

    Hoff, Katharina J; Stanke, Mario


    The prediction of protein coding genes is an important step in the annotation of newly sequenced and assembled genomes. AUGUSTUS is one of the most accurate tools for eukaryotic gene prediction. Here, we present WebAUGUSTUS, a web interface for training AUGUSTUS and predicting genes with AUGUSTUS. Depending on the needs of the user, WebAUGUSTUS generates training gene structures automatically. Besides a genome file, either a file with expressed sequence tags or a file with protein sequences is required for this step. Alternatively, it is possible to submit an externally generated training gene structure file and a genome file. The web service optimizes AUGUSTUS parameters and predicts genes with those parameters. WebAUGUSTUS is available at

  10. Modular, rule-based modeling for the design of eukaryotic synthetic gene circuits. (United States)

    Marchisio, Mario Andrea; Colaiacovo, Moreno; Whitehead, Ellis; Stelling, Jörg


    The modular design of synthetic gene circuits via composable parts (DNA segments) and pools of signal carriers (molecules such as RNA polymerases and ribosomes) has been successfully applied to bacterial systems. However, eukaryotic cells are becoming a preferential host for new synthetic biology applications. Therefore, an accurate description of the intricate network of reactions that take place inside eukaryotic parts and pools is necessary. Rule-based modeling approaches are increasingly used to obtain compact representations of reaction networks in biological systems. However, this approach is intrinsically non-modular and not suitable per se for the description of composable genetic modules. In contrast, the Model Description Language (MDL) adopted by the modeling tool ProMoT is highly modular and it enables a faithful representation of biological parts and pools. We developed a computational framework for the design of complex (eukaryotic) gene circuits by generating dynamic models of parts and pools via the joint usage of the BioNetGen rule-based modeling approach and MDL. The framework converts the specification of a part (or pool) structure into rules that serve as inputs for BioNetGen to calculate the part's species and reactions. The BioNetGen output is translated into an MDL file that gives a complete description of all the reactions that take place inside the part (or pool) together with a proper interface to connect it to other modules in the circuit. In proof-of-principle applications to eukaryotic Boolean circuits with more than ten genes and more than one thousand reactions, our framework yielded proper representations of the circuits' truth tables. For the model-based design of increasingly complex gene circuits, it is critical to achieve exact and systematic representations of the biological processes with minimal effort. Our computational framework provides such a detailed and intuitive way to design new and complex synthetic gene circuits.

  11. Horizontal gene transfer of a Chlamydial tRNA-guanine transglycosylase gene to eukaryotic microbes. (United States)

    Manna, Sam; Harman, Ashley


    tRNA-guanine transglycosylases are found in all domains of life and mediate the base exchange of guanine with queuine in the anticodon loop of tRNAs. They can also regulate virulence in bacteria such as Shigella flexneri, which has prompted the development of drugs that inhibit the function of these enzymes. Here we report a group of tRNA-guanine transglycosylases in eukaryotic microbes (algae and protozoa) which are more similar to their bacterial counterparts than previously characterized eukaryotic tRNA-guanine transglycosylases. We provide evidence demonstrating that the genes encoding these enzymes were acquired by these eukaryotic lineages via horizontal gene transfer from the Chlamydiae group of bacteria. Given that the S. flexneri tRNA-guanine transglycosylase can be targeted by drugs, we propose that the bacterial-like tRNA-guanine transglycosylases could potentially be targeted in a similar fashion in pathogenic amoebae that possess these enzymes such as Acanthamoeba castellanii. This work also presents ancient prokaryote-to-eukaryote horizontal gene transfer events as an untapped resource of potential drug target identification in pathogenic eukaryotes. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Horizontal transfer of a eukaryotic plastid-targeted protein gene to cyanobacteria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keeling Patrick J


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Horizontal or lateral transfer of genetic material between distantly related prokaryotes has been shown to play a major role in the evolution of bacterial and archaeal genomes, but exchange of genes between prokaryotes and eukaryotes is not as well understood. In particular, gene flow from eukaryotes to prokaryotes is rarely documented with strong support, which is unusual since prokaryotic genomes appear to readily accept foreign genes. Results Here, we show that abundant marine cyanobacteria in the related genera Synechococcus and Prochlorococcus acquired a key Calvin cycle/glycolytic enzyme from a eukaryote. Two non-homologous forms of fructose bisphosphate aldolase (FBA are characteristic of eukaryotes and prokaryotes respectively. However, a eukaryotic gene has been inserted immediately upstream of the ancestral prokaryotic gene in several strains (ecotypes of Synechococcus and Prochlorococcus. In one lineage this new gene has replaced the ancestral gene altogether. The eukaryotic gene is most closely related to the plastid-targeted FBA from red algae. This eukaryotic-type FBA once replaced the plastid/cyanobacterial type in photosynthetic eukaryotes, hinting at a possible functional advantage in Calvin cycle reactions. The strains that now possess this eukaryotic FBA are scattered across the tree of Synechococcus and Prochlorococcus, perhaps because the gene has been transferred multiple times among cyanobacteria, or more likely because it has been selectively retained only in certain lineages. Conclusion A gene for plastid-targeted FBA has been transferred from red algae to cyanobacteria, where it has inserted itself beside its non-homologous, functional analogue. Its current distribution in Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus is punctate, suggesting a complex history since its introduction to this group.

  13. Oceanographic structure drives the assembly processes of microbial eukaryotic communities (United States)

    Monier, Adam; Comte, Jérôme; Babin, Marcel; Forest, Alexandre; Matsuoka, Atsushi; Lovejoy, Connie


    Arctic Ocean microbial eukaryote phytoplankton form subsurface chlorophyll maximum (SCM), where much of the annual summer production occurs. This SCM is particularly persistent in the Western Arctic Ocean, which is strongly salinity stratified. The recent loss of multiyear sea ice and increased particulate-rich river discharge in the Arctic Ocean results in a greater volume of fresher water that may displace nutrient-rich saltier waters to deeper depths and decrease light penetration in areas affected by river discharge. Here, we surveyed microbial eukaryotic assemblages in the surface waters, and within and below the SCM. In most samples, we detected the pronounced SCM that usually occurs at the interface of the upper mixed layer and Pacific Summer Water (PSW). Poorly developed SCM was seen under two conditions, one above PSW and associated with a downwelling eddy, and the second in a region influenced by the Mackenzie River plume. Four phylogenetically distinct communities were identified: surface, pronounced SCM, weak SCM and a deeper community just below the SCM. Distance–decay relationships and phylogenetic structure suggested distinct ecological processes operating within these communities. In the pronounced SCM, picophytoplanktons were prevalent and community assembly was attributed to water mass history. In contrast, environmental filtering impacted the composition of the weak SCM communities, where heterotrophic Picozoa were more numerous. These results imply that displacement of Pacific waters to greater depth and increased terrigenous input may act as a control on SCM development and result in lower net summer primary production with a more heterotroph dominated eukaryotic microbial community. PMID:25325383

  14. Structural genomics of eukaryotic targets at a laboratory scale. (United States)

    Busso, Didier; Poussin-Courmontagne, Pierre; Rosé, David; Ripp, Raymond; Litt, Alain; Thierry, Jean-Claude; Moras, Dino


    Structural genomics programs are distributed worldwide and funded by large institutions such as the NIH in United-States, the RIKEN in Japan or the European Commission through the SPINE network in Europe. Such initiatives, essentially managed by large consortia, led to technology and method developments at the different steps required to produce biological samples compatible with structural studies. Besides specific applications, method developments resulted mainly upon miniaturization and parallelization. The challenge that academic laboratories faces to pursue structural genomics programs is to produce, at a higher rate, protein samples. The Structural Biology and Genomics Department (IGBMC - Illkirch - France) is implicated in a structural genomics program of high eukaryotes whose goal is solving crystal structures of proteins and their complexes (including large complexes) related to human health and biotechnology. To achieve such a challenging goal, the Department has established a medium-throughput pipeline for producing protein samples suitable for structural biology studies. Here, we describe the setting up of our initiative from cloning to crystallization and we demonstrate that structural genomics may be manageable by academic laboratories by strategic investments in robotic and by adapting classical bench protocols and new developments, in particular in the field of protein expression, to parallelization.

  15. Structure of a eukaryotic SWEET transporter in a homotrimeric complex. (United States)

    Tao, Yuyong; Cheung, Lily S; Li, Shuo; Eom, Joon-Seob; Chen, Li-Qing; Xu, Yan; Perry, Kay; Frommer, Wolf B; Feng, Liang


    Eukaryotes rely on efficient distribution of energy and carbon skeletons between organs in the form of sugars. Glucose in animals and sucrose in plants serve as the dominant distribution forms. Cellular sugar uptake and release require vesicular and/or plasma membrane transport proteins. Humans and plants use proteins from three superfamilies for sugar translocation: the major facilitator superfamily (MFS), the sodium solute symporter family (SSF; only in the animal kingdom), and SWEETs. SWEETs carry mono- and disaccharides across vacuolar or plasma membranes. Plant SWEETs play key roles in sugar translocation between compartments, cells, and organs, notably in nectar secretion, phloem loading for long distance translocation, pollen nutrition, and seed filling. Plant SWEETs cause pathogen susceptibility possibly by sugar leakage from infected cells. The vacuolar Arabidopsis thaliana AtSWEET2 sequesters sugars in root vacuoles; loss-of-function mutants show increased susceptibility to Pythium infection. Here we show that its orthologue, the vacuolar glucose transporter OsSWEET2b from rice (Oryza sativa), consists of an asymmetrical pair of triple-helix bundles, connected by an inversion linker transmembrane helix (TM4) to create the translocation pathway. Structural and biochemical analyses show OsSWEET2b in an apparent inward (cytosolic) open state forming homomeric trimers. TM4 tightly interacts with the first triple-helix bundle within a protomer and mediates key contacts among protomers. Structure-guided mutagenesis of the close paralogue SWEET1 from Arabidopsis identified key residues in substrate translocation and protomer crosstalk. Insights into the structure-function relationship of SWEETs are valuable for understanding the transport mechanism of eukaryotic SWEETs and may be useful for engineering sugar flux.

  16. Structural and evolutionary divergence of eukaryotic protein kinases in Apicomplexa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Talevich Eric


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Apicomplexa constitute an evolutionarily divergent phylum of protozoan pathogens responsible for widespread parasitic diseases such as malaria and toxoplasmosis. Many cellular functions in these medically important organisms are controlled by protein kinases, which have emerged as promising drug targets for parasitic diseases. However, an incomplete understanding of how apicomplexan kinases structurally and mechanistically differ from their host counterparts has hindered drug development efforts to target parasite kinases. Results We used the wealth of sequence data recently made available for 15 apicomplexan species to identify the kinome of each species and quantify the evolutionary constraints imposed on each family of apicomplexan kinases. Our analysis revealed lineage-specific adaptations in selected families, namely cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK, calcium-dependent protein kinase (CDPK and CLK/LAMMER, which have been identified as important in the pathogenesis of these organisms. Bayesian analysis of selective constraints imposed on these families identified the sequence and structural features that most distinguish apicomplexan protein kinases from their homologs in model organisms and other eukaryotes. In particular, in a subfamily of CDKs orthologous to Plasmodium falciparum crk-5, the activation loop contains a novel PTxC motif which is absent from all CDKs outside Apicomplexa. Our analysis also suggests a convergent mode of regulation in a subset of apicomplexan CDPKs and mammalian MAPKs involving a commonly conserved arginine in the αC helix. In all recognized apicomplexan CLKs, we find a set of co-conserved residues involved in substrate recognition and docking that are distinct from metazoan CLKs. Conclusions We pinpoint key conserved residues that can be predicted to mediate functional differences from eukaryotic homologs in three identified kinase families. We discuss the structural, functional and

  17. Patterns of exon-intron architecture variation of genes in eukaryotic genomes

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    Chen Jian-Qun


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The origin and importance of exon-intron architecture comprises one of the remaining mysteries of gene evolution. Several studies have investigated the variations of intron length, GC content, ordinal position in a gene and divergence. However, there is little study about the structural variation of exons and introns. Results We investigated the length, GC content, ordinal position and divergence in both exons and introns of 13 eukaryotic genomes, representing plant and animal. Our analyses revealed that three basic patterns of exon-intron variation were present in nearly all analyzed genomes (P Conclusion Although the factors contributing to these patterns have not been identified, our results provide three important clues: common factor(s exist and may shape both exons and introns; the ordinal reduction patterns may reflect a time-orderly evolution; and the larger first and last exons may be splicing-required. These clues provide a framework for elucidating mechanisms involved in the organization of eukaryotic genomes and particularly in building exon-intron structures.

  18. Novel Features of Eukaryotic Photosystem II Revealed by Its Crystal Structure Analysis from a Red Alga*


    Ago, Hideo; Adachi, Hideyuki; Umena, Yasufumi; Tashiro, Takayoshi; Kawakami, Keisuke; Kamiya, Nobuo; Tian, Lirong; Han, Guangye; Kuang, Tingyun; Liu, Zheyi; Wang, Fangjun; Zou, Hanfa; Enami, Isao; Miyano, Masashi; Shen, Jian-Ren


    Photosystem II (PSII) catalyzes light-induced water splitting, leading to the evolution of molecular oxygen indispensible for life on the earth. The crystal structure of PSII from cyanobacteria has been solved at an atomic level, but the structure of eukaryotic PSII has not been analyzed. Because eukaryotic PSII possesses additional subunits not found in cyanobacterial PSII, it is important to solve the structure of eukaryotic PSII to elucidate their detailed functions, as well as evolutionar...

  19. Horizontal transfers of transposable elements in eukaryotes: The flying genes. (United States)

    Panaud, Olivier


    Transposable elements (TEs) are the major components of eukaryotic genomes. Their propensity to densely populate and in some cases invade the genomes of plants and animals is in contradiction with the fact that transposition is strictly controlled by several molecular pathways acting at either transcriptional or post-transcriptional levels. Horizontal transfers, defined as the transmission of genetic material between sexually isolated species, have long been considered as rare phenomena. Here, we show that the horizontal transfers of transposable elements (HTTs) are very frequent in ecosystems. The exact mechanisms of such transfers are not well understood, but species involved in close biotic interactions, like parasitism, show a propensity to exchange genetic material horizontally. We propose that HTTs allow TEs to escape the silencing machinery of their host genome and may therefore be an important mechanism for their survival and their dissemination in eukaryotes. Copyright © 2016 Académie des sciences. Published by Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.

  20. An Interactive Exercise To Learn Eukaryotic Cell Structure and Organelle Function. (United States)

    Klionsky, Daniel J.; Tomashek, John J.


    Describes a cooperative, interactive problem-solving exercise for studying eukaryotic cell structure and function. Highlights the dynamic aspects of movement through the cell. Contains 15 references. (WRM)

  1. The transferome of metabolic genes explored: analysis of the horizontal transfer of enzyme encoding genes in unicellular eukaryotes. (United States)

    Whitaker, John W; McConkey, Glenn A; Westhead, David R


    Metabolic networks are responsible for many essential cellular processes, and exhibit a high level of evolutionary conservation from bacteria to eukaryotes. If genes encoding metabolic enzymes are horizontally transferred and are advantageous, they are likely to become fixed. Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) has played a key role in prokaryotic evolution and its importance in eukaryotes is increasingly evident. High levels of endosymbiotic gene transfer (EGT) accompanied the establishment of plastids and mitochondria, and more recent events have allowed further acquisition of bacterial genes. Here, we present the first comprehensive multi-species analysis of E/HGT of genes encoding metabolic enzymes from bacteria to unicellular eukaryotes. The phylogenetic trees of 2,257 metabolic enzymes were used to make E/HGT assertions in ten groups of unicellular eukaryotes, revealing the sources and metabolic processes of the transferred genes. Analyses revealed a preference for enzymes encoded by genes gained through horizontal and endosymbiotic transfers to be connected in the metabolic network. Enrichment in particular functional classes was particularly revealing: alongside plastid related processes and carbohydrate metabolism, this highlighted a number of pathways in eukaryotic parasites that are rich in enzymes encoded by transferred genes, and potentially key to pathogenicity. The plant parasites Phytophthora were discovered to have a potential pathway for lipopolysaccharide biosynthesis of E/HGT origin not seen before in eukaryotes outside the Plantae. The number of enzymes encoded by genes gained through E/HGT has been established, providing insight into functional gain during the evolution of unicellular eukaryotes. In eukaryotic parasites, genes encoding enzymes that have been gained through horizontal transfer may be attractive drug targets if they are part of processes not present in the host, or are significantly diverged from equivalent host enzymes.

  2. Structure of the prolyl-tRNA synthetase from the eukaryotic pathogen Giardia lamblia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Larson, Eric T.; Kim, Jessica E.; Napuli, Alberto J.; Verlinde, Christophe L. M. J.; Fan, Erkang; Zucker, Frank H.; Van Voorhis, Wesley C.; Buckner, Frederick S.; Hol, Wim G. J.; Merritt, Ethan A., E-mail: [Medical Structural Genomics of Pathogenic Protozoa, (United States); University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195 (United States)


    The structure of Giardia prolyl-tRNA synthetase cocrystallized with proline and ATP shows evidence for half-of-the-sites activity, leading to a corresponding mixture of reaction substrates and product (prolyl-AMP) in the two active sites of the dimer. The genome of the human intestinal parasite Giardia lamblia contains only a single aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase gene for each amino acid. The Giardia prolyl-tRNA synthetase gene product was originally misidentified as a dual-specificity Pro/Cys enzyme, in part owing to its unexpectedly high off-target activation of cysteine, but is now believed to be a normal representative of the class of archaeal/eukaryotic prolyl-tRNA synthetases. The 2.2 Å resolution crystal structure of the G. lamblia enzyme presented here is thus the first structure determination of a prolyl-tRNA synthetase from a eukaryote. The relative occupancies of substrate (proline) and product (prolyl-AMP) in the active site are consistent with half-of-the-sites reactivity, as is the observed biphasic thermal denaturation curve for the protein in the presence of proline and MgATP. However, no corresponding induced asymmetry is evident in the structure of the protein. No thermal stabilization is observed in the presence of cysteine and ATP. The implied low affinity for the off-target activation product cysteinyl-AMP suggests that translational fidelity in Giardia is aided by the rapid release of misactivated cysteine.

  3. Crystal structures of two eukaryotic nucleases involved in RNA metabolism

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jonstrup, Anette Thyssen; Midtgaard, Søren Fuglsang; Van, Lan Bich

    as well as the controlled turnover of these in response to changing surrounding conditions is of vital importance to ensure optimal fitness of a cell. Central to both these processes is the degradation of RNA, either as a means of decreasing the level of particular RNAs or as a way to get rid of aberrant...... form the 3'-end of mRNA, is normally the first and also rate-limiting step in cellular mRNA degradation and therefore a key process in the control of eukaryotic mRNA turnover. Since Ccr4p is believed to be the main deadenylase the precise role of Pop2p in the complex is less clear. Nevertheless, Pop2p....... In the nucleus Rrp6p associates with the exosome and participates in the degradation of improperly processed precursor mRNAs and trimming of stable RNAs. The crystal structure of S. cerevisiae Rrp6p presented here displays a conserved DEDD nuclease core with a flanking HRDC domain believed to be involved in RNA...

  4. Lateral gene transfer between prokaryotes and multicellular eukaryotes: ongoing and significant?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ros, V.I.D.; Hurst, G.D.D.


    The expansion of genome sequencing projects has produced accumulating evidence for lateral transfer of genes between prokaryotic and eukaryotic genomes. However, it remains controversial whether these genes are of functional importance in their recipient host. Nikoh and Nakabachi, in a recent paper

  5. Discovery of PPi-type Phosphoenolpyruvate Carboxykinase Genes in Eukaryotes and Bacteria* (United States)

    Chiba, Yoko; Kamikawa, Ryoma; Nakada-Tsukui, Kumiko; Saito-Nakano, Yumiko; Nozaki, Tomoyoshi


    Phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (PEPCK) is one of the pivotal enzymes that regulates the carbon flow of the central metabolism by fixing CO2 to phosphoenolpyruvate (PEP) to produce oxaloacetate or vice versa. Whereas ATP- and GTP-type PEPCKs have been well studied, and their protein identities are established, inorganic pyrophosphate (PPi)-type PEPCK (PPi-PEPCK) is poorly characterized. Despite extensive enzymological studies, its protein identity and encoding gene remain unknown. In this study, PPi-PEPCK has been identified for the first time from a eukaryotic human parasite, Entamoeba histolytica, by conventional purification and mass spectrometric identification of the native enzyme, followed by demonstration of its enzymatic activity. A homolog of the amebic PPi-PEPCK from an anaerobic bacterium Propionibacterium freudenreichii subsp. shermanii also exhibited PPi-PEPCK activity. The primary structure of PPi-PEPCK has no similarity to the functional homologs ATP/GTP-PEPCKs and PEP carboxylase, strongly suggesting that PPi-PEPCK arose independently from the other functional homologues and very likely has unique catalytic sites. PPi-PEPCK homologs were found in a variety of bacteria and some eukaryotes but not in archaea. The molecular identification of this long forgotten enzyme shows us the diversity and functional redundancy of enzymes involved in the central metabolism and can help us to understand the central metabolism more deeply. PMID:26269598

  6. Discovery of PPi-type Phosphoenolpyruvate Carboxykinase Genes in Eukaryotes and Bacteria. (United States)

    Chiba, Yoko; Kamikawa, Ryoma; Nakada-Tsukui, Kumiko; Saito-Nakano, Yumiko; Nozaki, Tomoyoshi


    Phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (PEPCK) is one of the pivotal enzymes that regulates the carbon flow of the central metabolism by fixing CO2 to phosphoenolpyruvate (PEP) to produce oxaloacetate or vice versa. Whereas ATP- and GTP-type PEPCKs have been well studied, and their protein identities are established, inorganic pyrophosphate (PPi)-type PEPCK (PPi-PEPCK) is poorly characterized. Despite extensive enzymological studies, its protein identity and encoding gene remain unknown. In this study, PPi-PEPCK has been identified for the first time from a eukaryotic human parasite, Entamoeba histolytica, by conventional purification and mass spectrometric identification of the native enzyme, followed by demonstration of its enzymatic activity. A homolog of the amebic PPi-PEPCK from an anaerobic bacterium Propionibacterium freudenreichii subsp. shermanii also exhibited PPi-PEPCK activity. The primary structure of PPi-PEPCK has no similarity to the functional homologs ATP/GTP-PEPCKs and PEP carboxylase, strongly suggesting that PPi-PEPCK arose independently from the other functional homologues and very likely has unique catalytic sites. PPi-PEPCK homologs were found in a variety of bacteria and some eukaryotes but not in archaea. The molecular identification of this long forgotten enzyme shows us the diversity and functional redundancy of enzymes involved in the central metabolism and can help us to understand the central metabolism more deeply. © 2015 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  7. The classification, structure and functioning of Ago proteins in Eukaryotes

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    Aleksandra Poterala


    Full Text Available Ago proteins are members of the highly specialized and conserved Argonaute family, primarily responsible for regulation of gene expression. As a part of RNA-induced silencing complexes (RISCs Ago proteins are responsible for binding a short RNA and cleavage/inhibition of translation of target mRNAs. Phosphorylation may work as the switch between those two functions, but the role of magnesium ion concentration is also taken into consideration. Recent reports indicate that Ago proteins can interact with an mRNA and cause inhibition of translation without the participation of a short RNA. As key elements in RNA interference processes, Ago proteins are an important and intensively exploited area of research. Furthermore, these proteins are involved in the repair of DNA double-strand breaks by homologous recombination, modifications of chromatin, and alternative splicing. Their role in the cell cycle and senescence is also being studied. In addition, Ago expression is tissue-specific, which potentially may be used for diagnostic purposes. Understanding the mechanisms of Ago functioning is therefore crucial for understanding many cellular processes. The following article presents a detailed description of the Ago proteins including their post-translational modifications, recent data and hypotheses concerning their interactions with short RNAs and mRNAs as well as the mechanisms of siRNA/miRNA sorting into individual members of the Ago subfamily, and their role in eukaryotic cells. The latest classification of Ago proteins within the Argonaute family based on evolutionary studies and their possible interactions with DNA are also described.

  8. Structural Characterization of a Eukaryotic Cyanase from Tetranychus urticae. (United States)

    Schlachter, Caleb R; Klapper, Vincent; Wybouw, Nicky; Radford, Taylor; Van Leeuwen, Thomas; Grbic, Miodrag; Chruszcz, Maksymilian


    The two-spotted spider mite Tetranychus urticae is a polyphagous agricultural pest and poses a high risk to global crop production as it is rapidly developing pesticide resistance. Genomic and transcriptomic analysis has revealed the presence of a remarkable cyanase gene in T. urticae and related mite species within the Acariformes lineage. Cyanase catalyzes the detoxification of cyanate and is potentially an attractive protein target for the development of new acaricides. Phylogenetic analysis indicates that within the Acariformes, the cyanase gene originates from a single horizontal gene transfer event, which precedes subsequent speciation. Our structural studies presented here compare and contrast prokaryotic cyanases to T. urticae cyanase, which all form homodecamers and have conserved active site residues, but display different surface areas between homodimers in the overall decameric structure.

  9. Algal endosymbionts as vectors of horizontal gene transfer in photosynthetic eukaryotes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huan eQiu


    Full Text Available Photosynthesis in eukaryotes occurs in the plastid, an organelle that is derived from a single cyanobacterial primary endosymbiosis in the common ancestor of the supergroup Plantae (or Archaeplastida that includes green, red, and glaucophyte algae and plants. However a variety of other phytoplankton such as the chlorophyll c-containing diatoms, dinoflagellates, and haptophytes contain a red alga-derived plastid that traces its origin to secondary or tertiary (eukaryote engulfs eukaryote endosymbiosis. The hypothesis of Plantae monophyly has only recently been substantiated, however the extent and role of endosymbiotic and horizontal gene transfer (EGT and HGT in algal genome evolution still remain to be fully understood. What is becoming clear from analysis of complete genome data is that algal gene complements can no longer be considered essentially eukaryotic in provenance; i.e., with the expected addition of several hundred cyanobacterial genes derived from EGT and a similar number derived from the mitochondrial ancestor. For example, we now know that foreign cells such as Chlamydiae and other prokaryotes have made significant contributions to plastid functions in Plantae. Perhaps more surprising is the recent finding of extensive bacterium-derived HGT in the nuclear genome of the unicellular red alga Porphyridium purpureum that does not relate to plastid functions. These non-endosymbiont gene transfers not only shaped the evolutionary history of Plantae but also were propagated via secondary endosymbiosis to a multitude of other phytoplankton. Here we discuss the idea that Plantae (in particular red algae are one of the major players in eukaryote genome evolution by virtue of their ability to act as sinks and sources of foreign genes through HGT and endosymbiosis, respectively. This hypothesis recognizes the often under-appreciated Rhodophyta as major sources of genetic novelty among photosynthetic eukaryotes.

  10. A tree of life based on ninety-eight expressed genes conserved across diverse eukaryotic species.

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    Pawan Kumar Jayaswal

    Full Text Available Rapid advances in DNA sequencing technologies have resulted in the accumulation of large data sets in the public domain, facilitating comparative studies to provide novel insights into the evolution of life. Phylogenetic studies across the eukaryotic taxa have been reported but on the basis of a limited number of genes. Here we present a genome-wide analysis across different plant, fungal, protist, and animal species, with reference to the 36,002 expressed genes of the rice genome. Our analysis revealed 9831 genes unique to rice and 98 genes conserved across all 49 eukaryotic species analysed. The 98 genes conserved across diverse eukaryotes mostly exhibited binding and catalytic activities and shared common sequence motifs; and hence appeared to have a common origin. The 98 conserved genes belonged to 22 functional gene families including 26S protease, actin, ADP-ribosylation factor, ATP synthase, casein kinase, DEAD-box protein, DnaK, elongation factor 2, glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate, phosphatase 2A, ras-related protein, Ser/Thr protein phosphatase family protein, tubulin, ubiquitin and others. The consensus Bayesian eukaryotic tree of life developed in this study demonstrated widely separated clades of plants, fungi, and animals. Musa acuminata provided an evolutionary link between monocotyledons and dicotyledons, and Salpingoeca rosetta provided an evolutionary link between fungi and animals, which indicating that protozoan species are close relatives of fungi and animals. The divergence times for 1176 species pairs were estimated accurately by integrating fossil information with synonymous substitution rates in the comprehensive set of 98 genes. The present study provides valuable insight into the evolution of eukaryotes.

  11. Prokaryotic genes in eukaryotic genome sequences: when to infer horizontal gene transfer and when to suspect an actual microbe. (United States)

    Artamonova, Irena I; Lappi, Tanya; Zudina, Liudmila; Mushegian, Arcady R


    Assessment of phylogenetic positions of predicted gene and protein sequences is a routine step in any genome project, useful for validating the species' taxonomic position and for evaluating hypotheses about genome evolution and function. Several recent eukaryotic genome projects have reported multiple gene sequences that were much more similar to homologues in bacteria than to any eukaryotic sequence. In the spirit of the times, horizontal gene transfer from bacteria to eukaryotes has been invoked in some of these cases. Here, we show, using comparative sequence analysis, that some of those bacteria-like genes indeed appear likely to have been horizontally transferred from bacteria to eukaryotes. In other cases, however, the evidence strongly indicates that the eukaryotic DNA sequenced in the genome project contains a sample of non-integrated DNA from the actual bacteria, possibly providing a window into the host microbiome. Recent literature suggests also that common reagents, kits and laboratory equipment may be systematically contaminated with bacterial DNA, which appears to be sampled by metagenome projects non-specifically. We review several bioinformatic criteria that help to distinguish putative horizontal gene transfers from the admixture of genes from autonomously replicating bacteria in their hosts' genome databases or from the reagent contamination. © 2015 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  12. Widespread Horizontal Gene Transfer from Circular Single-stranded DNA Viruses to Eukaryotic Genomes

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    Xie Jiatao


    Full Text Available Abstract Background In addition to vertical transmission, organisms can also acquire genes from other distantly related species or from their extra-chromosomal elements (plasmids and viruses via horizontal gene transfer (HGT. It has been suggested that phages represent substantial forces in prokaryotic evolution. In eukaryotes, retroviruses, which can integrate into host genome as an obligate step in their replication strategy, comprise approximately 8% of the human genome. Unlike retroviruses, few members of other virus families are known to transfer genes to host genomes. Results Here we performed a systematic search for sequences related to circular single-stranded DNA (ssDNA viruses in publicly available eukaryotic genome databases followed by comprehensive phylogenetic analysis. We conclude that the replication initiation protein (Rep-related sequences of geminiviruses, nanoviruses and circoviruses have been frequently transferred to a broad range of eukaryotic species, including plants, fungi, animals and protists. Some of the transferred viral genes were conserved and expressed, suggesting that these genes have been coopted to assume cellular functions in the host genomes. We also identified geminivirus-like and parvovirus-like transposable elements in genomes of fungi and lower animals, respectively, and thereby provide direct evidence that eukaryotic transposons could derive from ssDNA viruses. Conclusions Our discovery extends the host range of circular ssDNA viruses and sheds light on the origin and evolution of these viruses. It also suggests that ssDNA viruses act as an unforeseen source of genetic innovation in their hosts.

  13. Recurrent horizontal transfer of bacterial toxin genes to eukaryotes. (United States)

    Moran, Yehu; Fredman, David; Szczesny, Pawel; Grynberg, Marcin; Technau, Ulrich


    In this work, we report likely recurrent horizontal (lateral) gene transfer events of genes encoding pore-forming toxins of the aerolysin family between species belonging to different kingdoms of life. Clustering based on pairwise similarity and phylogenetic analysis revealed several distinct aerolysin sequence groups, each containing proteins from multiple kingdoms of life. These results strongly support at least six independent transfer events between distantly related phyla in the evolutionary history of one protein family and discount selective retention of ancestral genes as a plausible explanation for this patchy phylogenetic distribution. We discuss the possible roles of these proteins and show evidence for a convergent new function in two extant species. We hypothesize that certain gene families are more likely to be maintained following horizontal gene transfer from commensal or pathogenic organism to its host if they 1) can function alone; and 2) are immediately beneficial for the ecology of the organism, as in the case of pore-forming toxins which can be utilized in multicellular organisms for defense and predation.

  14. Helicobacter pylori evolution: lineage- specific adaptations in homologs of eukaryotic Sel1-like genes.

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    Masako Ogura


    Full Text Available Geographic partitioning is postulated to foster divergence of Helicobacter pylori populations as an adaptive response to local differences in predominant host physiology. H. pylori's ability to establish persistent infection despite host inflammatory responses likely involves active management of host defenses using bacterial proteins that may themselves be targets for adaptive evolution. Sequenced H. pylori genomes encode a family of eight or nine secreted proteins containing repeat motifs that are characteristic of the eukaryotic Sel1 regulatory protein, whereas the related Campylobacter and Wolinella genomes each contain only one or two such "Sel1-like repeat" (SLR genes ("slr genes". Signatures of positive selection (ratio of nonsynonymous to synonymous mutations, dN/dS = omega > 1 were evident in the evolutionary history of H. pylori slr gene family expansion. Sequence analysis of six of these slr genes (hp0160, hp0211, hp0235, hp0519, hp0628, and hp1117 from representative East Asian, European, and African H. pylori strains revealed that all but hp0628 had undergone positive selection, with different amino acids often selected in different regions. Most striking was a divergence of Japanese and Korean alleles of hp0519, with Japanese alleles having undergone particularly strong positive selection (omegaJ > 25, whereas alleles of other genes from these populations were intermingled. Homology-based structural modeling localized most residues under positive selection to SLR protein surfaces. Rapid evolution of certain slr genes in specific H. pylori lineages suggests a model of adaptive change driven by selection for fine-tuning of host responses, and facilitated by geographic isolation. Characterization of such local adaptations should help elucidate how H. pylori manages persistent infection, and potentially lead to interventions tailored to diverse human populations.

  15. Structure of Prokaryotic Polyamine Deacetylase Reveals Evolutionary Functional Relationships with Eukaryotic Histone Deacetylases

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    P Lombardi; H Angell; D Whittington; E Flynn; K Rajashankar; D Christianson


    Polyamines are a ubiquitous class of polycationic small molecules that can influence gene expression by binding to nucleic acids. Reversible polyamine acetylation regulates nucleic acid binding and is required for normal cell cycle progression and proliferation. Here, we report the structures of Mycoplana ramosa acetylpolyamine amidohydrolase (APAH) complexed with a transition state analogue and a hydroxamate inhibitor and an inactive mutant complexed with two acetylpolyamine substrates. The structure of APAH is the first of a histone deacetylase-like oligomer and reveals that an 18-residue insert in the L2 loop promotes dimerization and the formation of an 18 {angstrom} long 'L'-shaped active site tunnel at the dimer interface, accessible only to narrow and flexible substrates. The importance of dimerization for polyamine deacetylase function leads to the suggestion that a comparable dimeric or double-domain histone deacetylase could catalyze polyamine deacetylation reactions in eukaryotes.

  16. Gene transfer from bacteria and archaea facilitated evolution of an extremophilic eukaryote. (United States)

    Schönknecht, Gerald; Chen, Wei-Hua; Ternes, Chad M; Barbier, Guillaume G; Shrestha, Roshan P; Stanke, Mario; Bräutigam, Andrea; Baker, Brett J; Banfield, Jillian F; Garavito, R Michael; Carr, Kevin; Wilkerson, Curtis; Rensing, Stefan A; Gagneul, David; Dickenson, Nicholas E; Oesterhelt, Christine; Lercher, Martin J; Weber, Andreas P M


    Some microbial eukaryotes, such as the extremophilic red alga Galdieria sulphuraria, live in hot, toxic metal-rich, acidic environments. To elucidate the underlying molecular mechanisms of adaptation, we sequenced the 13.7-megabase genome of G. sulphuraria. This alga shows an enormous metabolic flexibility, growing either photoautotrophically or heterotrophically on more than 50 carbon sources. Environmental adaptation seems to have been facilitated by horizontal gene transfer from various bacteria and archaea, often followed by gene family expansion. At least 5% of protein-coding genes of G. sulphuraria were probably acquired horizontally. These proteins are involved in ecologically important processes ranging from heavy-metal detoxification to glycerol uptake and metabolism. Thus, our findings show that a pan-domain gene pool has facilitated environmental adaptation in this unicellular eukaryote.

  17. Functional and evolutionary analysis of alternatively spliced genes is consistent with an early eukaryotic origin of alternative splicing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Irimia, Manuel; Rukov, Jakob Lewin; Penny, David


    , and may therefore predate multicellularity, is still unknown. To better understand the origin and evolution of alternative splicing and its usage in diverse organisms, we studied alternative splicing in 12 eukaryotic species, comparing rates of alternative splicing across genes of different functional...... classes, cellular locations, intron/exon structures and evolutionary origins. RESULTS: For each species, we find that genes from most functional categories are alternatively spliced. Ancient genes (shared between animals, fungi and plants) show high levels of alternative splicing. Genes with products...... expressed in the nucleus or plasma membrane are generally more alternatively spliced while those expressed in extracellular location show less alternative splicing. We find a clear correspondence between incidence of alternative splicing and intron number per gene both within and between genomes. In general...

  18. The Gene Ontology of eukaryotic cilia and flagella

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roncaglia, P.; Dam, T.J.P. van; Christie, K.R.; Nacheva, L.; Toedt, G.; Huynen, M.A.; Huntley, R.P.; Gibson, T.J.; Lomax, J.


    Background: Recent research into ciliary structure and function provides important insights into inherited diseases termed ciliopathies and other cilia-related disorders. This wealth of knowledge needs to be translated into a computational representation to be fully exploitable by the research

  19. Distribution Associated with Stochastic Processes of Gene Expression in a Single Eukaryotic Cell

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kuznetsov Vladimir A


    Full Text Available The ability to simultaneously measure mRNA abundance for large number of genes has revolutionized biological research by allowing statistical analysis of global gene-expression data. Large-scale gene-expression data sets have been analyzed in order to identify the probability distributions of gene expression levels (or transcript copy numbers in eukaryotic cells. Determining such function(s may provide a theoretical basis for accurately counting all expressed genes in a given cell and for understanding gene expression control. Using the gene-expression libraries derived from yeast cells and from different human cell tissues we found that all observed gene expression levels data appear to follow a Pareto-like skewed frequency distribution. We produced a the skewed probability function, called the Binomial Differential distribution, that accounts for many rarely transcribed genes in a single cell. We also developed a novel method for estimating and removing major experimental errors and redundancies from the Serial Analysis Gene Expression (SAGE data sets. We successfully applied this method to the yeast transcriptome. A "basal" random transcription mechanism for all protein-coding genes in every eukaryotic cell type is predicted.

  20. Eukaryotic beta-alanine synthases are functionally related but have a high degree of structural diversity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gojkovic, Zoran; Sandrini, Michael; Piskur, Jure


    activity was used to clone analogous genes from different eukaryotes. Putative PYD3 sequences from the yeast S. kluyveri, the slime mold Dictyostelium discoideum, and the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster complemented the pyd3 defect. When the S. kluyveri PYD3 gene was expressed in S. cerevisiae, which has...

  1. Vertical structure of small eukaryotes in three lakes that differ by their trophic status: a quantitative approach. (United States)

    Lepère, Cecile; Masquelier, Sylvie; Mangot, Jean-François; Debroas, Didier; Domaizon, Isabelle


    In lakes, the diversity of eukaryotic picoplankton has been recently studied by the analysis of 18S ribosomal RNA gene sequences; however, quantitative data are rare. In this study, the vertical structure and abundance of the small eukaryotic size fraction (0.2-5 μm) were investigated in three lakes by tyramide signal amplification-fluorescent in situ hybridization targeting six phylogenetic groups: Chlorophyta, Haptophyta, Cercozoa, LKM11, Perkinsozoa and fungi. The groups targeted in this study are found in all lakes; however, both the abundance and structure of small eukaryotes are dependent on the system's productivity and depth. These data highlighted the presence of Chlorophyta contributing on an average to 19.3%, 14.7% and 41.2% of total small eukaryotes in lakes Bourget, Aydat and Pavin, respectively. This study also revealed the unexpected importance of Haptophyta, reaching 62.8% of eukaryotes in the euphotic zone of Lake Bourget. The high proportions of these pigmented cells highlight the underestimation of these groups by PCR-based methods. The presence of pigmented Chlorophyta in the deepest zones of the lakes suggests a mixotrophic behaviour of these taxa. We also confirmed the presence of putative parasites such as Perkinsozoa (5.1% of small eukaryotes in Lake Pavin and Bourget) and, with lower abundances, fungi (targeted by the MY1574 probe). Cells targeted by LKM11 probes represented the second group of abundance within heterotrophs. Open questions regarding the functional roles of the targeted groups arise from this study, especially regarding parasitism and mixotrophy, which are interactions poorly taken into account in planktonic food web models.

  2. Evolution of PAS domains and PAS-containing genes in eukaryotes. (United States)

    Mei, Qiming; Dvornyk, Volodymyr


    The PAS domains are signal modules, which are widely distributed in proteins across all kingdoms of life. They are common in photoreceptors and transcriptional regulators of eukaryotic circadian clocks q(bHLH-PAS proteins and PER in animals; PHY and ZTL in plants; and WC-1, 2, and VVD in fungi) and possess mainly protein-protein interaction and light-sensing functions. We conducted several evolutionary analyses of the PAS superfamily. Although the whole superfamily evolved primarily under strong purifying selection (average ω ranges from 0.0030 to 0.1164), some lineages apparently experienced strong episodic positive selection at some periods of the evolution. Although the PAS domains from different proteins vary in sequence and length, but they maintain a fairly conserved 3D structure, which is determined by only eight residues. The WC-1 and WC- 2, bHLH-PAS, and P er genes probably originated in the Neoproterozoic Era (1000-542 Mya), plant P hy and ZTL evolved in the Paleozoic (541-252 Mya), which might be a result of adaptation to the major climate and global light regime changes having occurred in those eras.

  3. Multiple, non-allelic, intein-coding sequences in eukaryotic RNA polymerase genes

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    Butler Margaret I


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Inteins are self-splicing protein elements. They are translated as inserts within host proteins that excise themselves and ligate the flanking portions of the host protein (exteins with a peptide bond. They are encoded as in-frame insertions within the genes for the host proteins. Inteins are found in all three domains of life and in viruses, but have a very sporadic distribution. Only a small number of intein coding sequences have been identified in eukaryotic nuclear genes, and all of these are from ascomycete or basidiomycete fungi. Results We identified seven intein coding sequences within nuclear genes coding for the second largest subunits of RNA polymerase. These sequences were found in diverse eukaryotes: one is in the second largest subunit of RNA polymerase I (RPA2 from the ascomycete fungus Phaeosphaeria nodorum, one is in the RNA polymerase III (RPC2 of the slime mould Dictyostelium discoideum and four intein coding sequences are in RNA polymerase II genes (RPB2, one each from the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, the zygomycete fungus Spiromyces aspiralis and the chytrid fungi Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis and Coelomomyces stegomyiae. The remaining intein coding sequence is in a viral relic embedded within the genome of the oomycete Phytophthora ramorum. The Chlamydomonas and Dictyostelium inteins are the first nuclear-encoded inteins found outside of the fungi. These new inteins represent a unique dataset: they are found in homologous proteins that form a paralogous group. Although these paralogues diverged early in eukaryotic evolution, their sequences can be aligned over most of their length. The inteins are inserted at multiple distinct sites, each of which corresponds to a highly conserved region of RNA polymerase. This dataset supports earlier work suggesting that inteins preferentially occur in highly conserved regions of their host proteins. Conclusion The identification of these new inteins

  4. Snapshot of the eukaryotic gene expression in muskoxen rumen--a metatranscriptomic approach.

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    Meng Qi

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Herbivores rely on digestive tract lignocellulolytic microorganisms, including bacteria, fungi and protozoa, to derive energy and carbon from plant cell wall polysaccharides. Culture independent metagenomic studies have been used to reveal the genetic content of the bacterial species within gut microbiomes. However, the nature of the genes encoded by eukaryotic protozoa and fungi within these environments has not been explored using metagenomic or metatranscriptomic approaches. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In this study, a metatranscriptomic approach was used to investigate the functional diversity of the eukaryotic microorganisms within the rumen of muskoxen (Ovibos moschatus, with a focus on plant cell wall degrading enzymes. Polyadenylated RNA (mRNA was sequenced on the Illumina Genome Analyzer II system and 2.8 gigabases of sequences were obtained and 59129 contigs assembled. Plant cell wall degrading enzyme modules including glycoside hydrolases, carbohydrate esterases and polysaccharide lyases were identified from over 2500 contigs. These included a number of glycoside hydrolase family 6 (GH6, GH48 and swollenin modules, which have rarely been described in previous gut metagenomic studies. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The muskoxen rumen metatranscriptome demonstrates a much higher percentage of cellulase enzyme discovery and an 8.7x higher rate of total carbohydrate active enzyme discovery per gigabase of sequence than previous rumen metagenomes. This study provides a snapshot of eukaryotic gene expression in the muskoxen rumen, and identifies a number of candidate genes coding for potentially valuable lignocellulolytic enzymes.

  5. Effect of environmental variables on eukaryotic microbial community structure of land-fast Arctic sea ice. (United States)

    Eddie, Brian; Juhl, Andrew; Krembs, Christopher; Baysinger, Charles; Neuer, Susanne


    Sea ice microbial community structure affects carbon and nutrient cycling in polar seas, but its susceptibility to changing environmental conditions is not well understood. We studied the eukaryotic microbial community in sea ice cores recovered near Point Barrow, AK in May 2006 by documenting the composition of the community in relation to vertical depth within the cores, as well as light availability (mainly as variable snow cover) and nutrient concentrations. We applied a combination of epifluorescence microscopy, denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and clone libraries of a section of the 18S rRNA gene in order to compare the community structure of the major eukaryotic microbial phylotypes in the ice. We find that the community composition of the sea ice is more affected by the depth horizon in the ice than by light availability, although there are significant differences in the abundance of some groups between light regimes. Epifluorescence microscopy shows a shift from predominantly heterotrophic life styles in the upper ice to autotrophy prevailing in the bottom ice. This is supported by the statistical analysis of the similarity between the samples based on the denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis banding patterns, which shows a clear difference between upper and lower ice sections with respect to phylotypes and their proportional abundance. Clone libraries constructed using diatom-specific primers confirm the high diversity of diatoms in the sea ice, and support the microscopic counts. Evidence of protistan grazing upon diatoms was also found in lower sections of the core, with implications for carbon and nutrient recycling in the ice.

  6. Differential gene expression in Giardia lamblia under oxidative stress: significance in eukaryotic evolution. (United States)

    Raj, Dibyendu; Ghosh, Esha; Mukherjee, Avik K; Nozaki, Tomoyoshi; Ganguly, Sandipan


    Giardia lamblia is a unicellular, early branching eukaryote causing giardiasis, one of the most common human enteric diseases. Giardia, a microaerophilic protozoan parasite has to build up mechanisms to protect themselves against oxidative stress within the human gut (oxygen concentration 60 μM) to establish its pathogenesis. G. lamblia is devoid of the conventional mechanisms of the oxidative stress management system, including superoxide dismutase, catalase, peroxidase, and glutathione cycling, which are present in most eukaryotes. NADH oxidase is a major component of the electron transport chain of G. lamblia, which in concurrence with disulfide reductase, protects oxygen-labile proteins such as pyruvate: ferredoxin oxidoreductase against oxidative stress by sustaining a reduced intracellular environment. It also contains the arginine dihydrolase pathway, which occurs in a number of anaerobic prokaryotes, includes substrate level phosphorylation and adequately active to make a major contribution to ATP production. To study differential gene expression under three types of oxidative stress, a Giardia genomic DNA array was constructed and hybridized with labeled cDNA of cells with or without stress. The transcriptomic data has been analyzed and further validated using real time PCR. We identified that out of 9216 genes represented on the array, more than 200 genes encoded proteins with functions in metabolism, oxidative stress management, signaling, reproduction and cell division, programmed cell death and cytoskeleton. We recognized genes modulated by at least ≥ 2 fold at a significant time point in response to oxidative stress. The study has highlighted the genes that are differentially expressed during the three experimental conditions which regulate the stress management pathway differently to achieve redox homeostasis. Identification of some unique genes in oxidative stress regulation may help in new drug designing for this common enteric parasite prone to

  7. Inter-species differences of co-expression of neighboring genes in eukaryotic genomes

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    Inaoka Hidenori


    Full Text Available Abstract Background There is increasing evidence that gene order within the eukaryotic genome is not random. In yeast and worm, adjacent or neighboring genes tend to be co-expressed. Clustering of co-expressed genes has been found in humans, worm and fruit flies. However, in mice and rats, an effect of chromosomal distance (CD on co-expression has not been investigated yet. Also, no cross-species comparison has been made so far. We analyzed the effect of CD as well as normalized distance (ND using expression data in six eukaryotic species: yeast, fruit fly, worm, rat, mouse and human. Results We analyzed 24 sets of expression data from the six species. Highly co-expressed pairs were sorted into bins of equal sized intervals of CD, and a co-expression rate (CoER in each bin was calculated. In all datasets, a higher CoER was obtained in a short CD range than a long distance range. These results show that across all studied species, there was a consistent effect of CD on co-expression. However, the results using the ND show more diversity. Intra- and inter-species comparisons of CoER reveal that there are significant differences in the co-expression rates of neighboring genes among the species. A pair-wise BLAST analysis finds 8 – 30 % of the highly co-expressed pairs are duplic ated genes. Conclusion We confirmed that in the six eukaryotic species, there was a consistent tendency that neighboring genes are likely to be co-expressed. Results of pair-wised BLAST indicate a significant effect of non-duplicated pairs on co-expression. A comparison of CD and ND suggests the dominant effect of CD.

  8. Evolutionary relationship of archaebacteria, eubacteria, and eukaryotes inferred from phylogenetic trees of duplicated genes. (United States)

    Iwabe, N; Kuma, K; Hasegawa, M; Osawa, S; Miyata, T


    All extant organisms are though to be classified into three primary kingdoms, eubacteria, eukaryotes, and archaebacteria. The molecular evolutionary studies on the origin and evolution of archaebacteria to date have been carried out by inferring a molecular phylogenetic tree of the primary kingdoms based on comparison of a single molecule from a variety of extant species. From such comparison, it was not possible to derive the exact evolutionary relationship among the primary kingdoms, because the root of the tree could not be determined uniquely. To overcome this difficulty, we compared a pair of duplicated genes, elongation factors Tu and G, and the alpha and beta subunits of ATPase, which are thought to have diverged by gene duplication before divergence of the primary kingdoms. Using each protein pair, we inferred a composite phylogenetic tree with two clusters corresponding to different proteins, from which the evolutionary relationship of the primary kingdoms is determined uniquely. The inferred composite trees reveal that archaebacteria are more closely related to eukaryotes than to eubacteria for all the cases. By bootstrap resamplings, this relationship is reproduced with probabilities of 0.96, 0.79, 1.0, and 1.0 for elongation factors Tu and G and for ATPase subunits alpha and beta, respectively. There are also several lines of evidence for the close sequence similarity between archaebacteria and eukaryotes. Thus we propose that this tree topology represents the general evolutionary relationship among the three primary kingdoms. PMID:2531898

  9. Selecting targets from eukaryotic parasites for structural genomics and drug discovery. (United States)

    Phan, Isabelle Q H; Stacy, Robin; Myler, Peter J


    The selection of targets is the first step for any structural genomics project. The application of structural genomics approaches to drug discovery also starts with the selection of targets. Here, three protocols are described that were developed to select targets from eukaryotic pathogens. These protocols could also be applied to other drug discovery projects.

  10. Selecting targets from eukaryotic parasites for structural genomics and drug discovery (United States)

    Phan, Isabelle Q. H.; Stacy, Robin; Myler, Peter J.


    The selection of targets is the first step for any structural genomics project. The application of structural genomics approaches to drug discovery also starts with the selection of targets. Here, three protocols are described that were developed to select targets from eukaryotic pathogens. These protocols could also be applied to other drug discovery projects. PMID:24590708

  11. [Construction of eukaryotic expression plasmid for mouse myogenic regulatory factor MyoD gene]. (United States)

    Qin, R F; Gu, X M; Chen, J W


    To construct eukaryotic expression plasmid of mouse myogenic regulatory factor MyoD gene for further study on MyoD gene function in molecular regulatory mechanism in skeletal muscle repair. The plasmids PEMMBC2 beta 5 containing full cDNA length of MyoD inserted in EcoRI restriction site, were first propagated in Escherichia coli DH5a, then extracted and purified with the Wizard Plus Minipreps DNA Purification System (Promega, USA). The coding sequence of MyoD in PEMMBC2 beta 5 was confirmed by agarose gel electrophoresis and DNA sequence analysis. After plasmids PEMMBC2 beta 5 and plasmids pcDNA3-neo were prepared by digestion with EcoRI, the MyoD cDNA fragment was inserted into EcoRI site in pcDNA3-neo eukaryotic expression vector, and pcDNA3/MyoD was formed. The pcDNA3/MyoD, digested with restriction enzymes, was found to contain the MyoD cDNA sequence by agarose gel electrophoresis analysis. The extracted and purified PEMMBC2 beta 5 contained the correct nucleotide sequence for the full length of MyoD cDNA fragment. The MyoD cDNA fragment had been inserted into the eukaryotic expression plasmid pcDNA3-neo, which formed the pcDNA3/MyoD. The pcDNA3/MyoD, a eukaryotic expression plasmid, for MyoD is constructed successfully.

  12. Phylogenetic analysis of the core histone doublet and DNA topo II genes of Marseilleviridae: evidence of proto-eukaryotic provenance. (United States)

    Erives, Albert J


    While the genomes of eukaryotes and Archaea both encode the histone-fold domain, only eukaryotes encode the core histone paralogs H2A, H2B, H3, and H4. With DNA, these core histones assemble into the nucleosomal octamer underlying eukaryotic chromatin. Importantly, core histones for H2A and H3 are maintained as neofunctionalized paralogs adapted for general bulk chromatin (canonical H2 and H3) or specialized chromatin (H2A.Z enriched at gene promoters and cenH3s enriched at centromeres). In this context, the identification of core histone-like "doublets" in the cytoplasmic replication factories of the Marseilleviridae (MV) is a novel finding with possible relevance to understanding the origin of eukaryotic chromatin. Here, we analyze and compare the core histone doublet genes from all known MV genomes as well as other MV genes relevant to the origin of the eukaryotic replisome. Using different phylogenetic approaches, we show that MV histone domains encode obligate H2B-H2A and H4-H3 dimers of possible proto-eukaryotic origin. MV core histone moieties form sister clades to each of the four eukaryotic clades of canonical and variant core histones. This suggests that MV core histone moieties diverged prior to eukaryotic neofunctionalizations associated with paired linear chromosomes and variant histone octamer assembly. We also show that MV genomes encode a proto-eukaryotic DNA topoisomerase II enzyme that forms a sister clade to eukaryotes. This is a relevant finding given that DNA topo II influences histone deposition and chromatin compaction and is the second most abundant nuclear protein after histones. The combined domain architecture and phylogenomic analyses presented here suggest that a primitive origin for MV histone genes is a more parsimonious explanation than horizontal gene transfers + gene fusions + sufficient divergence to eliminate relatedness to eukaryotic neofunctionalizations within the H2A and H3 clades without loss of relatedness to each of

  13. ATLs and BTLs, plant-specific and general eukaryotic structurally-related E3 ubiquitin ligases. (United States)

    Guzmán, Plinio


    Major components of the ubiquitin proteasome system are the enzymes that operate on the transfer of ubiquitin to selected target substrate, known as ubiquitin ligases. The RING finger is a domain that is present in key classes of ubiquitin ligases. This domain coordinates the interaction with a suitable E2 conjugase and the transfer of ubiquitin from the E2 to protein targets. Additional domains coupled to the same polypeptide are important for modulating the function of these ubiquitin ligases. Plants contain several types of E3 ubiquitin ligases that in many cases have expanded as multigene families. Some families are specific to the plant lineage, whereas others may have a common ancestor among plants and other eukaryotic lineages. Arabidopsis Tóxicos en Levadura (ATLs) and BCA2 zinc finger ATLs (BTLs) are two families of ubiquitin ligases that share some common structural features. These are intronless genes that encode a highly related RING finger domain, and yet during evolutionary history, their mode of gene expansion and function is rather different. In each of these two families, the co-occurrence of transmembrane helices or C2/C2 (BZF finger) domains with a selected variation on the RING finger has been subjected to strong selection pressure in order to preserve their unique domain architectures during evolution. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Patterns of Transcript Abundance of Eukaryotic Biogeochemically-Relevant Genes in the Amazon River Plume.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian L Zielinski

    Full Text Available The Amazon River has the largest discharge of all rivers on Earth, and its complex plume system fuels a wide array of biogeochemical processes, across a large area of the western tropical North Atlantic. The plume thus stimulates microbial processes affecting carbon sequestration and nutrient cycles at a global scale. Chromosomal gene expression patterns of the 2.0 to 156 μm size-fraction eukaryotic microbial community were investigated in the Amazon River Plume, generating a robust dataset (more than 100 million mRNA sequences that depicts the metabolic capabilities and interactions among the eukaryotic microbes. Combining classical oceanographic field measurements with metatranscriptomics yielded characterization of the hydrographic conditions simultaneous with a quantification of transcriptional activity and identity of the community. We highlight the patterns of eukaryotic gene expression for 31 biogeochemically significant gene targets hypothesized to be valuable within forecasting models. An advantage to this targeted approach is that the database of reference sequences used to identify the target genes was selectively constructed and highly curated optimizing taxonomic coverage, throughput, and the accuracy of annotations. A coastal diatom bloom highly expressed nitrate transporters and carbonic anhydrase presumably to support high growth rates and enhance uptake of low levels of dissolved nitrate and CO2. Diatom-diazotroph association (DDA: diatoms with nitrogen fixing symbionts blooms were common when surface salinity was mesohaline and dissolved nitrate concentrations were below detection, and hence did not show evidence of nitrate utilization, suggesting they relied on ammonium transporters to aquire recently fixed nitrogen. These DDA blooms in the outer plume had rapid turnover of the photosystem D1 protein presumably caused by photodegradation under increased light penetration in clearer waters, and increased expression of silicon

  15. Glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase gene diversity in eubacteria and eukaryotes: evidence for intra- and inter-kingdom gene transfer. (United States)

    Figge, R M; Schubert, M; Brinkmann, H; Cerff, R


    Cyanobacteria contain up to three highly divergent glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH) genes: gap1, gap2, and gap3. Genes gap1 and gap2 are closely related at the sequence level to the nuclear genes encoding cytosolic and chloroplast GAPDH of higher plants and have recently been shown to play distinct key roles in catabolic and anabolic carbon flow, respectively, of the unicellular cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC6803. In the present study, sequences of 10 GAPDH genes distributed across the cyanobacteria Prochloron didemni, Gloeobacter violaceus PCC7421, and Synechococcus PCC7942 and the alpha-proteobacterium Paracoccus denitrificans and the beta-proteobacterium Ralstonia solanacearum were determined. Prochloron didemni possesses homologs to the gap2 and gap3 genes from Anabaena, Gloeobacter harbors gap1 and gap2 homologs, and Synechococcus possesses gap1, gap2, and gap3. Paracoccus harbors two highly divergent gap genes that are related to gap3, and Ralstonia possesses a homolog of the gap1 gene. Phylogenetic analyses of these sequences in the context of other eubacterial and eukaryotic GAPDH genes reveal that divergence across eubacterial gap1, and gap2, and gap3 genes is greater than that between eubacterial gap1 and eukaroytic glycolytic GapC or between eubacterial gap2 and eukaryotic Calvin cycle GapAB. These data strongly support previous analyses which suggested that eukaryotes acquired their nuclear genes for GapC and GapAB via endosymbiotic gene transfer from the antecedents of mitochondria and chloroplasts, and extend the known range of sequence diversity of the antecedent eubacterial genes. Analyses of available GAPDH sequences from other eubacterial sources indicate that the glycosomal gap gene from trypanosomes (cytosolic in Euglena) and the gap gene from the spirochete Treponema pallidum are each other's closest relatives. This specific relationship can therefore not reflect organismal evolution but must be the result of an

  16. Eukaryotic Ribonucleases P/MRP: the Crystal Structure of the P3 Domain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Perederina, A.; Esakova, O; Quan, C; Khanova, E; Krasilnikov, A


    Ribonuclease (RNase) P is a site-specific endoribonuclease found in all kingdoms of life. Typical RNase P consists of a catalytic RNA component and a protein moiety. In the eukaryotes, the RNase P lineage has split into two, giving rise to a closely related enzyme, RNase MRP, which has similar components but has evolved to have different specificities. The eukaryotic RNases P/MRP have acquired an essential helix-loop-helix protein-binding RNA domain P3 that has an important function in eukaryotic enzymes and distinguishes them from bacterial and archaeal RNases P. Here, we present a crystal structure of the P3 RNA domain from Saccharomyces cerevisiae RNase MRP in a complex with RNase P/MRP proteins Pop6 and Pop7 solved to 2.7 {angstrom}. The structure suggests similar structural organization of the P3 RNA domains in RNases P/MRP and possible functions of the P3 domains and proteins bound to them in the stabilization of the holoenzymes' structures as well as in interactions with substrates. It provides the first insight into the structural organization of the eukaryotic enzymes of the RNase P/MRP family.

  17. Eukaryotic ribonucleases P/MRP: the crystal structure of the P3 domain. (United States)

    Perederina, Anna; Esakova, Olga; Quan, Chao; Khanova, Elena; Krasilnikov, Andrey S


    Ribonuclease (RNase) P is a site-specific endoribonuclease found in all kingdoms of life. Typical RNase P consists of a catalytic RNA component and a protein moiety. In the eukaryotes, the RNase P lineage has split into two, giving rise to a closely related enzyme, RNase MRP, which has similar components but has evolved to have different specificities. The eukaryotic RNases P/MRP have acquired an essential helix-loop-helix protein-binding RNA domain P3 that has an important function in eukaryotic enzymes and distinguishes them from bacterial and archaeal RNases P. Here, we present a crystal structure of the P3 RNA domain from Saccharomyces cerevisiae RNase MRP in a complex with RNase P/MRP proteins Pop6 and Pop7 solved to 2.7 A. The structure suggests similar structural organization of the P3 RNA domains in RNases P/MRP and possible functions of the P3 domains and proteins bound to them in the stabilization of the holoenzymes' structures as well as in interactions with substrates. It provides the first insight into the structural organization of the eukaryotic enzymes of the RNase P/MRP family.

  18. Lateral transfer of tetrahymanol-synthesizing genes has allowed multiple diverse eukaryote lineages to independently adapt to environments without oxygen

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takishita Kiyotaka


    Full Text Available Abstract Sterols are key components of eukaryotic cellular membranes that are synthesized by multi-enzyme pathways that require molecular oxygen. Because prokaryotes fundamentally lack sterols, it is unclear how the vast diversity of bacterivorous eukaryotes that inhabit hypoxic environments obtain, or synthesize, sterols. Here we show that tetrahymanol, a triterpenoid that does not require molecular oxygen for its biosynthesis, likely functions as a surrogate of sterol in eukaryotes inhabiting oxygen-poor environments. Genes encoding the tetrahymanol synthesizing enzyme squalene-tetrahymanol cyclase were found from several phylogenetically diverged eukaryotes that live in oxygen-poor environments and appear to have been laterally transferred among such eukaryotes. Reviewers This article was reviewed by Eric Bapteste and Eugene Koonin.

  19. Preferential duplication of intermodular hub genes: an evolutionary signature in eukaryotes genome networks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ricardo M Ferreira

    Full Text Available Whole genome protein-protein association networks are not random and their topological properties stem from genome evolution mechanisms. In fact, more connected, but less clustered proteins are related to genes that, in general, present more paralogs as compared to other genes, indicating frequent previous gene duplication episodes. On the other hand, genes related to conserved biological functions present few or no paralogs and yield proteins that are highly connected and clustered. These general network characteristics must have an evolutionary explanation. Considering data from STRING database, we present here experimental evidence that, more than not being scale free, protein degree distributions of organisms present an increased probability for high degree nodes. Furthermore, based on this experimental evidence, we propose a simulation model for genome evolution, where genes in a network are either acquired de novo using a preferential attachment rule, or duplicated with a probability that linearly grows with gene degree and decreases with its clustering coefficient. For the first time a model yields results that simultaneously describe different topological distributions. Also, this model correctly predicts that, to produce protein-protein association networks with number of links and number of nodes in the observed range for Eukaryotes, it is necessary 90% of gene duplication and 10% of de novo gene acquisition. This scenario implies a universal mechanism for genome evolution.

  20. The Eukaryotic Promoter Database, EPD: new entry types and links to gene expression data. (United States)

    Praz, Viviane; Périer, Rouaïda; Bonnard, Claude; Bucher, Philipp


    The Eukaryotic Promoter Database (EPD) is an annotated, non-redundant collection of eukaryotic Pol II promoters, for which the transcription start site has been determined experimentally. Access to promoter sequences is provided by pointers to positions in nucleotide sequence entries. The annotation part of an entry includes a description of the initiation site mapping data, exhaustive cross-references to the EMBL nucleotide sequence database, SWISS-PROT, TRANSFAC and other databases, as well as bibliographic references. EPD is structured in a way that facilitates dynamic extraction of biologically meaningful promoter subsets for comparative sequence analysis. World Wide Web-based interfaces have been developed which enable the user to view EPD entries in different formats, to select and extract promoter sequences according to a variety of criteria, and to navigate to related databases exploiting different cross-references. The EPD web site also features yearly updated base frequency matrices for major eukaryotic promoter elements. EPD can be accessed at

  1. gene structure, gene expression

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Primer 5.0 software. To adjust for RNA quality and diffe- rences in cDNA concentration, we amplified actin as an internal control with the following primers: PtActin-F (5′-TG. AAGGAGAAACTTGCGTAT-3′) and PtActin-R (5′-GCA. CAATGTTACCGTACAGAT-3′). These genes were ampli- fied from first-strand cDNA using ...

  2. Three-dimensional structural analysis of eukaryotic flagella/cilia by electron cryo-tomography

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bui, Khanh Huy; Pigino, Gaia; Ishikawa, Takashi, E-mail: [Paul Scherrer Institute, 5232 Villigen PSI (Switzerland); ETH Zurich (Switzerland)


    Based on the molecular architecture revealed by electron cryo-tomography, the mechanism of the bending motion of eukaryotic flagella/cilia is discussed. Electron cryo-tomography is a potential approach to analyzing the three-dimensional conformation of frozen hydrated biological macromolecules using electron microscopy. Since projections of each individual object illuminated from different orientations are merged, electron tomography is capable of structural analysis of such heterogeneous environments as in vivo or with polymorphism, although radiation damage and the missing wedge are severe problems. Here, recent results on the structure of eukaryotic flagella, which is an ATP-driven bending organelle, from green algae Chlamydomonas are presented. Tomographic analysis reveals asymmetric molecular arrangements, especially that of the dynein motor proteins, in flagella, giving insight into the mechanism of planar asymmetric bending motion. Methodological challenges to obtaining higher-resolution structures from this technique are also discussed.

  3. CRISPR-Mediated Base Editing Enables Efficient Disruption of Eukaryotic Genes through Induction of STOP Codons. (United States)

    Billon, Pierre; Bryant, Eric E; Joseph, Sarah A; Nambiar, Tarun S; Hayward, Samuel B; Rothstein, Rodney; Ciccia, Alberto


    Standard CRISPR-mediated gene disruption strategies rely on Cas9-induced DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs). Here, we show that CRISPR-dependent base editing efficiently inactivates genes by precisely converting four codons (CAA, CAG, CGA, and TGG) into STOP codons without DSB formation. To facilitate gene inactivation by induction of STOP codons (iSTOP), we provide access to a database of over 3.4 million single guide RNAs (sgRNAs) for iSTOP (sgSTOPs) targeting 97%-99% of genes in eight eukaryotic species, and we describe a restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) assay that allows the rapid detection of iSTOP-mediated editing in cell populations and clones. To simplify the selection of sgSTOPs, our resource includes annotations for off-target propensity, percentage of isoforms targeted, prediction of nonsense-mediated decay, and restriction enzymes for RFLP analysis. Additionally, our database includes sgSTOPs that could be employed to precisely model over 32,000 cancer-associated nonsense mutations. Altogether, this work provides a comprehensive resource for DSB-free gene disruption by iSTOP. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Metatranscriptomics reveals the diversity of genes expressed by eukaryotes in forest soils.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Coralie Damon

    Full Text Available Eukaryotic organisms play essential roles in the biology and fertility of soils. For example the micro and mesofauna contribute to the fragmentation and homogenization of plant organic matter, while its hydrolysis is primarily performed by the fungi. To get a global picture of the activities carried out by soil eukaryotes we sequenced 2×10,000 cDNAs synthesized from polyadenylated mRNA directly extracted from soils sampled in beech (Fagus sylvatica and spruce (Picea abies forests. Taxonomic affiliation of both cDNAs and 18S rRNA sequences showed a dominance of sequences from fungi (up to 60% and metazoans while protists represented less than 12% of the 18S rRNA sequences. Sixty percent of cDNA sequences from beech forest soil and 52% from spruce forest soil had no homologs in the GenBank/EMBL/DDJB protein database. A Gene Ontology term was attributed to 39% and 31.5% of the spruce and beech soil sequences respectively. Altogether 2076 sequences were putative homologs to different enzyme classes participating to 129 KEGG pathways among which several were implicated in the utilisation of soil nutrients such as nitrogen (ammonium, amino acids, oligopeptides, sugars, phosphates and sulfate. Specific annotation of plant cell wall degrading enzymes identified enzymes active on major polymers (cellulose, hemicelluloses, pectin, lignin and glycoside hydrolases represented 0.5% (beech soil-0.8% (spruce soil of the cDNAs. Other sequences coding enzymes active on organic matter (extracellular proteases, lipases, a phytase, P450 monooxygenases were identified, thus underlining the biotechnological potential of eukaryotic metatranscriptomes. The phylogenetic affiliation of 12 full-length carbohydrate active enzymes showed that most of them were distantly related to sequences from known fungi. For example, a putative GH45 endocellulase was closely associated to molluscan sequences, while a GH7 cellobiohydrolase was closest to crustacean sequences, thus

  5. Eukaryote-to-eukaryote gene transfer events revealed by the genome sequence of the wine yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae EC1118. (United States)

    Novo, Maite; Bigey, Frédéric; Beyne, Emmanuelle; Galeote, Virginie; Gavory, Frédérick; Mallet, Sandrine; Cambon, Brigitte; Legras, Jean-Luc; Wincker, Patrick; Casaregola, Serge; Dequin, Sylvie


    Saccharomyces cerevisiae has been used for millennia in winemaking, but little is known about the selective forces acting on the wine yeast genome. We sequenced the complete genome of the diploid commercial wine yeast EC1118, resulting in an assembly of 31 scaffolds covering 97% of the S288c reference genome. The wine yeast differed strikingly from the other S. cerevisiae isolates in possessing 3 unique large regions, 2 of which were subtelomeric, the other being inserted within an EC1118 chromosome. These regions encompass 34 genes involved in key wine fermentation functions. Phylogeny and synteny analyses showed that 1 of these regions originated from a species closely related to the Saccharomyces genus, whereas the 2 other regions were of non-Saccharomyces origin. We identified Zygosaccharomyces bailii, a major contaminant of wine fermentations, as the donor species for 1 of these 2 regions. Although natural hybridization between Saccharomyces strains has been described, this report provides evidence that gene transfer may occur between Saccharomyces and non-Saccharomyces species. We show that the regions identified are frequent and differentially distributed among S. cerevisiae clades, being found almost exclusively in wine strains, suggesting acquisition through recent transfer events. Overall, these data show that the wine yeast genome is subject to constant remodeling through the contribution of exogenous genes. Our results suggest that these processes are favored by ecologic proximity and are involved in the molecular adaptation of wine yeasts to conditions of high sugar, low nitrogen, and high ethanol concentrations.

  6. Evidence that the intra-amoebal Legionella drancourtii acquired a sterol reductase gene from eukaryotes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fournier Pierre-Edouard


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Free-living amoebae serve as a natural reservoir for some bacteria that have evolved into «amoeba-resistant» bacteria. Among these, some are strictly intra-amoebal, such as Candidatus "Protochlamydia amoebophila" (Candidatus "P. amoebophila", whose genomic sequence is available. We sequenced the genome of Legionella drancourtii (L. drancourtii, another recently described intra-amoebal bacterium. By comparing these two genomes with those of their closely related species, we were able to study the genetic characteristics specific to their amoebal lifestyle. Findings We identified a sterol delta-7 reductase-encoding gene common to these two bacteria and absent in their relatives. This gene encodes an enzyme which catalyses the last step of cholesterol biosynthesis in eukaryotes, and is probably functional within L. drancourtii since it is transcribed. The phylogenetic analysis of this protein suggests that it was acquired horizontally by a few bacteria from viridiplantae. This gene was also found in the Acanthamoeba polyphaga Mimivirus genome, a virus that grows in amoebae and possesses the largest viral genome known to date. Conclusion L. drancourtii acquired a sterol delta-7 reductase-encoding gene of viridiplantae origin. The most parsimonious hypothesis is that this gene was initially acquired by a Chlamydiales ancestor parasite of plants. Subsequently, its descendents transmitted this gene in amoebae to other intra-amoebal microorganisms, including L. drancourtii and Coxiella burnetii. The role of the sterol delta-7 reductase in prokaryotes is as yet unknown but we speculate that it is involved in host cholesterol parasitism.

  7. Eukaryotic beta-alanine synthases are functionally related but have a high degree of structural diversity. (United States)

    Gojković, Z; Sandrini, M P; Piskur, J


    beta-Alanine synthase (EC, which catalyzes the final step of pyrimidine catabolism, has only been characterized in mammals. A Saccharomyces kluyveri pyd3 mutant that is unable to grow on N-carbamyl-beta-alanine as the sole nitrogen source and exhibits diminished beta-alanine synthase activity was used to clone analogous genes from different eukaryotes. Putative PYD3 sequences from the yeast S. kluyveri, the slime mold Dictyostelium discoideum, and the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster complemented the pyd3 defect. When the S. kluyveri PYD3 gene was expressed in S. cerevisiae, which has no pyrimidine catabolic pathway, it enabled growth on N-carbamyl-beta-alanine as the sole nitrogen source. The D. discoideum and D. melanogaster PYD3 gene products are similar to mammalian beta-alanine synthases. In contrast, the S. kluyveri protein is quite different from these and more similar to bacterial N-carbamyl amidohydrolases. All three beta-alanine synthases are to some degree related to various aspartate transcarbamylases, which catalyze the second step of the de novo pyrimidine biosynthetic pathway. PYD3 expression in yeast seems to be inducible by dihydrouracil and N-carbamyl-beta-alanine, but not by uracil. This work establishes S. kluyveri as a model organism for studying pyrimidine degradation and beta-alanine production in eukaryotes. PMID:11454750

  8. A eukaryotic nicotinate-inducible gene cluster: convergent evolution in fungi and bacteria (United States)

    Ámon, Judit; Fernández-Martín, Rafael; Bokor, Eszter; Cultrone, Antonietta; Kelly, Joan M.; Flipphi, Michel; Scazzocchio, Claudio


    Nicotinate degradation has hitherto been elucidated only in bacteria. In the ascomycete Aspergillus nidulans, six loci, hxnS/AN9178 encoding the molybdenum cofactor-containing nicotinate hydroxylase, AN11197 encoding a Cys2/His2 zinc finger regulator HxnR, together with AN11196/hxnZ, AN11188/hxnY, AN11189/hxnP and AN9177/hxnT, are clustered and stringently co-induced by a nicotinate derivative and subject to nitrogen metabolite repression mediated by the GATA factor AreA. These genes are strictly co-regulated by HxnR. Within the hxnR gene, constitutive mutations map in two discrete regions. Aspergillus nidulans is capable of using nicotinate and its oxidation products 6-hydroxynicotinic acid and 2,5-dihydroxypyridine as sole nitrogen sources in an HxnR-dependent way. HxnS is highly similar to HxA, the canonical xanthine dehydrogenase (XDH), and has originated by gene duplication, preceding the origin of the Pezizomycotina. This cluster is conserved with some variations throughout the Aspergillaceae. Our results imply that a fungal pathway has arisen independently from bacterial ones. Significantly, the neo-functionalization of XDH into nicotinate hydroxylase has occurred independently from analogous events in bacteria. This work describes for the first time a gene cluster involved in nicotinate catabolism in a eukaryote and has relevance for the formation and evolution of co-regulated primary metabolic gene clusters and the microbial degradation of N-heterocyclic compounds. PMID:29212709

  9. Structures to complement the archaeo-eukaryotic primases catalytic cycle description: What's next?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julien Boudet


    Primase activity has been studied in the last decades but the detailed molecular steps explaining some unique features remain unclear. High-resolution structures of free and bound primases domains have brought significant insights in the understanding of the primase reaction cycle. Here, we give a short review of the structural work conducted in the field of archaeo-eukaryotic primases and we underline the missing “pictures” of the active forms of the enzyme which are of major interest. We organized our analysis with respect to the progression through the catalytic pathway.

  10. AS3MT-mediated tolerance to arsenic evolved by multiple independent horizontal gene transfers from bacteria to eukaryotes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Palmgren, Michael Broberg; Engström, Karin; Hallström, Björn M


    the evolutionary origin of AS3MT and assessed the ability of different genotypes to produce methylated arsenic metabolites. Phylogenetic analysis suggests that multiple, independent horizontal gene transfers between different bacteria, and from bacteria to eukaryotes, increased tolerance to environmental arsenic...

  11. ExDom: an integrated database for comparative analysis of the exon-intron structures of protein domains in eukaryotes. (United States)

    Bhasi, Ashwini; Philip, Philge; Manikandan, Vinu; Senapathy, Periannan


    We have developed ExDom, a unique database for the comparative analysis of the exon-intron structures of 96 680 protein domains from seven eukaryotic organisms (Homo sapiens, Mus musculus, Bos taurus, Rattus norvegicus, Danio rerio, Gallus gallus and Arabidopsis thaliana). ExDom provides integrated access to exon-domain data through a sophisticated web interface which has the following analytical capabilities: (i) intergenomic and intragenomic comparative analysis of exon-intron structure of domains; (ii) color-coded graphical display of the domain architecture of proteins correlated with their corresponding exon-intron structures; (iii) graphical analysis of multiple sequence alignments of amino acid and coding nucleotide sequences of homologous protein domains from seven organisms; (iv) comparative graphical display of exon distributions within the tertiary structures of protein domains; and (v) visualization of exon-intron structures of alternative transcripts of a gene correlated to variations in the domain architecture of corresponding protein isoforms. These novel analytical features are highly suited for detailed investigations on the exon-intron structure of domains and make ExDom a powerful tool for exploring several key questions concerning the function, origin and evolution of genes and proteins. ExDom database is freely accessible at:

  12. Structural basis for the initiation of eukaryotic transcription-coupled DNA repair. (United States)

    Xu, Jun; Lahiri, Indrajit; Wang, Wei; Wier, Adam; Cianfrocco, Michael A; Chong, Jenny; Hare, Alissa A; Dervan, Peter B; DiMaio, Frank; Leschziner, Andres E; Wang, Dong


    Eukaryotic transcription-coupled repair (TCR) is an important and well-conserved sub-pathway of nucleotide excision repair that preferentially removes DNA lesions from the template strand that block translocation of RNA polymerase II (Pol II). Cockayne syndrome group B (CSB, also known as ERCC6) protein in humans (or its yeast orthologues, Rad26 in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Rhp26 in Schizosaccharomyces pombe) is among the first proteins to be recruited to the lesion-arrested Pol II during the initiation of eukaryotic TCR. Mutations in CSB are associated with the autosomal-recessive neurological disorder Cockayne syndrome, which is characterized by progeriod features, growth failure and photosensitivity. The molecular mechanism of eukaryotic TCR initiation remains unclear, with several long-standing unanswered questions. How cells distinguish DNA lesion-arrested Pol II from other forms of arrested Pol II, the role of CSB in TCR initiation, and how CSB interacts with the arrested Pol II complex are all unknown. The lack of structures of CSB or the Pol II-CSB complex has hindered our ability to address these questions. Here we report the structure of the S. cerevisiae Pol II-Rad26 complex solved by cryo-electron microscopy. The structure reveals that Rad26 binds to the DNA upstream of Pol II, where it markedly alters its path. Our structural and functional data suggest that the conserved Swi2/Snf2-family core ATPase domain promotes the forward movement of Pol II, and elucidate key roles for Rad26 in both TCR and transcription elongation.

  13. Plastid 16S rRNA gene diversity among eukaryotic picophytoplankton sorted by flow cytometry from the South Pacific Ocean.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiao Li Shi

    Full Text Available The genetic diversity of photosynthetic picoeukaryotes was investigated in the South East Pacific Ocean. Genetic libraries of the plastid 16S rRNA gene were constructed on picoeukaryote populations sorted by flow cytometry, using two different primer sets, OXY107F/OXY1313R commonly used to amplify oxygenic organisms, and PLA491F/OXY1313R, biased towards plastids of marine algae. Surprisingly, the two sets revealed quite different photosynthetic picoeukaryote diversity patterns, which were moreover different from what we previously reported using the 18S rRNA nuclear gene as a marker. The first 16S primer set revealed many sequences related to Pelagophyceae and Dictyochophyceae, the second 16S primer set was heavily biased toward Prymnesiophyceae, while 18S sequences were dominated by Prasinophyceae, Chrysophyceae and Haptophyta. Primer mismatches with major algal lineages is probably one reason behind this discrepancy. However, other reasons, such as DNA accessibility or gene copy numbers, may be also critical. Based on plastid 16S rRNA gene sequences, the structure of photosynthetic picoeukaryotes varied along the BIOSOPE transect vertically and horizontally. In oligotrophic regions, Pelagophyceae, Chrysophyceae, and Prymnesiophyceae dominated. Pelagophyceae were prevalent at the DCM depth and Chrysophyceae at the surface. In mesotrophic regions Pelagophyceae were still important but Chlorophyta contribution increased. Phylogenetic analysis revealed a new clade of Prasinophyceae (clade 16S-IX, which seems to be restricted to hyper-oligotrophic stations. Our data suggest that a single gene marker, even as widely used as 18S rRNA, provides a biased view of eukaryotic communities and that the use of several markers is necessary to obtain a complete image.

  14. Crystal Structure of a Legionella pneumophila Ecto -Triphosphate Diphosphohydrolase, A Structural and Functional Homolog of the Eukaryotic NTPDases

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vivian, Julian P.; Riedmaier, Patrice; Ge, Honghua; Le Nours, Jérôme; Sansom, Fiona M.; Wilce, Matthew C.J.; Byres, Emma; Dias, Manisha; Schmidberger, Jason W.; Cowan, Peter J.; d' Apice, Anthony J.F.; Hartland, Elizabeth L.; Rossjohn, Jamie; Beddoe, Travis (Monash); (Melbourne)


    Many pathogenic bacteria have sophisticated mechanisms to interfere with the mammalian immune response. These include the disruption of host extracellular ATP levels that, in humans, is tightly regulated by the nucleoside triphosphate diphosphohydrolase family (NTPDases). NTPDases are found almost exclusively in eukaryotes, the notable exception being their presence in some pathogenic prokaryotes. To address the function of bacterial NTPDases, we describe the structures of an NTPDase from the pathogen Legionella pneumophila (Lpg1905/Lp1NTPDase) in its apo state and in complex with the ATP analog AMPPNP and the subtype-specific NTPDase inhibitor ARL 67156. Lp1NTPDase is structurally and catalytically related to eukaryotic NTPDases and the structure provides a basis for NTPDase-specific inhibition. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the activity of Lp1NTPDase correlates directly with intracellular replication of Legionella within macrophages. Collectively, these findings provide insight into the mechanism of this enzyme and highlight its role in host-pathogen interactions.

  15. Expression of conjoined genes: another mechanism for gene regulation in eukaryotes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tulika Prakash

    Full Text Available From the ENCODE project, it is realized that almost every base of the entire human genome is transcribed. One class of transcripts resulting from this arises from the conjoined gene, which is formed by combining the exons of two or more distinct (parent genes lying on the same strand of a chromosome. Only a very limited number of such genes are known, and the definition and terminologies used for them are highly variable in the public databases. In this work, we have computationally identified and manually curated 751 conjoined genes (CGs in the human genome that are supported by at least one mRNA or EST sequence available in the NCBI database. 353 representative CGs, of which 291 (82% could be confirmed, were subjected to experimental validation using RT-PCR and sequencing methods. We speculate that these genes are arising out of novel functional requirements and are not merely artifacts of transcription, since more than 70% of them are conserved in other vertebrate genomes. The unique splicing patterns exhibited by CGs reveal their possible roles in protein evolution or gene regulation. Novel CGs, for which no transcript is available, could be identified in 80% of randomly selected potential CG forming regions, indicating that their formation is a routine process. Formation of CGs is not only limited to human, as we have also identified 270 CGs in mouse and 227 in drosophila using our approach. Additionally, we propose a novel mechanism for the formation of CGs. Finally, we developed a database, ConjoinG, which contains detailed information about all the CGs (800 in total identified in the human genome. In summary, our findings reveal new insights about the functionality of CGs in terms of another possible mechanism for gene regulation and genomic evolution and the mechanism leading to their formation.

  16. The frequency of eubacterium-to-eukaryote lateral gene transfers shows significant cross-taxa variation within amoebozoa. (United States)

    Watkins, Russell F; Gray, Michael W


    Single-celled bacterivorous eukaryotes offer excellent test cases for evaluation of the frequency of prey-to-predator lateral gene transfer (LGT). Here we use analysis of expressed sequence tag (EST) data sets to quantify the extent of LGT from eubacteria to two amoebae, Acanthamoeba castellanii and Hartmannella vermiformis. Stringent screening for LGT proceeded in several steps intended to enrich for authentic events while at the same time minimizing the incidence of false positives due to factors such as limitations in database coverage and ancient paralogy. The results were compared with data obtained when the same methodology was applied to EST libraries from a number of other eukaryotic taxa. Significant differences in the extent of apparent eubacterium-to-eukaryote LGT were found between taxa. Our results indicate that there may be substantial inter-taxon variation in the number of LGT events that become fixed even between amoebozoan species that have similar feeding modalities.

  17. A comparison of the crystal structures of eukaryotic and bacterial SSU ribosomal RNAs reveals common structural features in the hypervariable regions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jung C Lee

    Full Text Available While the majority of the ribosomal RNA structure is conserved in the three major domains of life--archaea, bacteria, and eukaryotes, specific regions of the rRNA structure are unique to at least one of these three primary forms of life. In particular, the comparative secondary structure for the eukaryotic SSU rRNA contains several regions that are different from the analogous regions in the bacteria. Our detailed analysis of two recently determined eukaryotic 40S ribosomal crystal structures, Tetrahymena thermophila and Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and the comparison of these results with the bacterial Thermus thermophilus 30S ribosomal crystal structure: (1 revealed that the vast majority of the comparative structure model for the eukaryotic SSU rRNA is substantiated, including the secondary structure that is similar to both bacteria and archaea as well as specific for the eukaryotes, (2 resolved the secondary structure for regions of the eukaryotic SSU rRNA that were not determined with comparative methods, (3 identified eukaryotic helices that are equivalent to the bacterial helices in several of the hypervariable regions, (4 revealed that, while the coaxially stacked compound helix in the 540 region in the central domain maintains the constant length of 10 base pairs, its two constituent helices contain 5+5 bp rather than the 6+4 bp predicted with comparative analysis of archaeal and eukaryotic SSU rRNAs.

  18. Structural view on recycling of archaeal and eukaryotic ribosomes after canonical termination and ribosome rescue. (United States)

    Franckenberg, Sibylle; Becker, Thomas; Beckmann, Roland


    Ribosome recycling usually occurs after canonical termination triggered by a stop codon. Additionally, ribosomes that are stalled by aberrant mRNAs need to be recognized and subsequently recycled. In eukaryotes and archaea, the factors involved in canonical termination and ribosome rescue are structurally and functionally related. Both termination and ribosome rescue are mediated by class I release factors (eRF1/aRF1 in eukaryotic/archaeal termination) or their paralogs (Pelota/aPelota for ribosome rescue) and homologs of translational GTPases (eRF3/aEF1α in termination, Hbs1/aEF1α in ribosome rescue). These events are followed by recycling of the ribosome. Recently the ATPase ABCE1 was shown to be the main ribosome recycling factor. In concert with eRF1 or Pelota, ABCE1 dissociates the ribosome into subunits. During the past two years, several structures of ribosome rescue and ribosome recycling complexes have been solved by cryo-electron microscopy and crystallography. These structures along with recent functional data make it possible to propose a molecular model of these late translation events in termination and recycling. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Isolation of a novel ras gene from Trichomonas vaginalis: a possible evolutionary ancestor of the Ras and Rap genes of higher eukaryotes. (United States)

    Xu, Ming-Yan; Liu, Ju-Li; Zhang, Ren-Li; Fu, Yu-cai


    The Ras subfamily proteins are small, monomeric GTP-binding proteins with vital roles in regulating eukaryotic signal transduction pathways. Gene duplication and divergence have been postulated as the mechanism by which such family members have evolved their specific functions. A cDNA clone of TvRsp was isolated and sequenced from a cDNA expression library of the primitive eukaryote Trichomonas vaginalis. The genomic DNA corresponding to the cDNA sequence was amplified by PCR and sequenced. Sequence analysis suggested that TvRsp was an intronless gene. This gene encoded a protein of 181 amino acids and contained the 5 conserved G domains that designated it as a Ras or Rap subfamily member. However, the deduced amino acid sequence shared only 34%-37% overall identity with other Ras subfamily members of different species, and the presence of motifs characteristic of both the Ras and Rap families of GTPase confused the familial classification of this gene. Phylogenetic analysis showed its origins at the divergence point of the Ras/Rap families and suggested that TvRsp was a possible evolutionary ancestral gene of the ras/rap genes of higher eukaryotes. This information was of importance not only from the perspective of understanding the evolution and diversity of eukaryotic signal transduction pathways but also in providing a framework by which to understand protein processing in the growth and differentiation of single-celled microorganisms.

  20. Crystal structure of the homology domain of the eukaryotic DNA replication proteins Sld3/Treslin. (United States)

    Itou, Hiroshi; Muramatsu, Sachiko; Shirakihara, Yasuo; Araki, Hiroyuki


    The initiation of eukaryotic chromosomal DNA replication requires the formation of an active replicative helicase at the replication origins of chromosomal DNA. Yeast Sld3 and its metazoan counterpart Treslin are the hub proteins mediating protein associations critical for the helicase formation. Here, we show the crystal structure of the central domain of Sld3 that is conserved in Sld3/Treslin family of proteins. The domain consists of two segments with 12 helices and is sufficient to bind to Cdc45, the essential helicase component. The structure model of the Sld3-Cdc45 complex, which is crucial for the formation of the active helicase, is proposed. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Structural Studies of RNA Helicases Involved in Eukaryotic Pre-mRNA Splicing, Ribosome Biogenesis, and Translation Initiation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    He, Yangzi

    Ribonucleic acids (RNAs) take centre stage in gene expression. In eukaryotes, most RNAs are transcribed as precursors, and these precursors are co- or post-transcriptionally processed and assemble with particular proteins to form ribonucleoproteins (RNPs). Mature RNPs participate in various gene...... and ligates the neighbouring exons to generate mature mRNAs. Prp43 is an RNA helicase of the DEAH/RHA family. In yeast, once mRNAs are released, Prp43 catalyzes the disassembly of spliceosomes. The 18S, 5.8S and 25S rRNAs are transcribed as a single polycistronic transcript—the 35S pre-rRNA....... It is nucleolytically cleaved and chemically modified to generate mature rRNAs, which assemble with ribosomal proteins to form the ribosome. Prp43 is required for the processing of the 18S rRNA. Using X-ray crystallography, I determined a high resolution structure of Prp43 bound to ADP, the first structure of a DEAH...

  2. Gene Ontology consistent protein function prediction: the FALCON algorithm applied to six eukaryotic genomes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kourmpetis, Y.A.I.; Dijk, van A.D.J.; Braak, ter C.J.F.


    Gene Ontology (GO) is a hierarchical vocabulary for the description of biological functions and locations, often employed by computational methods for protein function prediction. Due to the structure of GO, function predictions can be self- contradictory. For example, a protein may be predicted to

  3. Structure of a Eukaryotic CLC Transporter Defines an Intermediate State in the Transport Cycle

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Feng, Liang; Campbell, Ernest B.; Hsiung, Yichun; MacKinnon, Roderick (Rockefeller)


    CLC proteins transport chloride (Cl{sup -}) ions across cell membranes to control the electrical potential of muscle cells, transfer electrolytes across epithelia, and control the pH and electrolyte composition of intracellular organelles. Some members of this protein family are Cl{sup -} ion channels, whereas others are secondary active transporters that exchange Cl{sup -} ions and protons (H{sup +}) with a 2:1 stoichiometry. We have determined the structure of a eukaryotic CLC transporter at 3.5 angstrom resolution. Cytoplasmic cystathionine beta-synthase (CBS) domains are strategically positioned to regulate the ion-transport pathway, and many disease-causing mutations in human CLCs reside on the CBS-transmembrane interface. Comparison with prokaryotic CLC shows that a gating glutamate residue changes conformation and suggests a basis for 2:1 Cl{sup -}/H{sup +} exchange and a simple mechanistic connection between CLC channels and transporters.

  4. Gene prediction in eukaryotes with a generalized hidden Markov model that uses hints from external sources

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    Morgenstern Burkhard


    Full Text Available Abstract Background In order to improve gene prediction, extrinsic evidence on the gene structure can be collected from various sources of information such as genome-genome comparisons and EST and protein alignments. However, such evidence is often incomplete and usually uncertain. The extrinsic evidence is usually not sufficient to recover the complete gene structure of all genes completely and the available evidence is often unreliable. Therefore extrinsic evidence is most valuable when it is balanced with sequence-intrinsic evidence. Results We present a fairly general method for integration of external information. Our method is based on the evaluation of hints to potentially protein-coding regions by means of a Generalized Hidden Markov Model (GHMM that takes both intrinsic and extrinsic information into account. We used this method to extend the ab initio gene prediction program AUGUSTUS to a versatile tool that we call AUGUSTUS+. In this study, we focus on hints derived from matches to an EST or protein database, but our approach can be used to include arbitrary user-defined hints. Our method is only moderately effected by the length of a database match. Further, it exploits the information that can be derived from the absence of such matches. As a special case, AUGUSTUS+ can predict genes under user-defined constraints, e.g. if the positions of certain exons are known. With hints from EST and protein databases, our new approach was able to predict 89% of the exons in human chromosome 22 correctly. Conclusion Sensitive probabilistic modeling of extrinsic evidence such as sequence database matches can increase gene prediction accuracy. When a match of a sequence interval to an EST or protein sequence is used it should be treated as compound information rather than as information about individual positions.

  5. Diversity of eukaryotic DNA replication origins revealed by genome-wide analysis of chromatin structure.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas M Berbenetz


    Full Text Available Eukaryotic DNA replication origins differ both in their efficiency and in the characteristic time during S phase when they become active. The biological basis for these differences remains unknown, but they could be a consequence of chromatin structure. The availability of genome-wide maps of nucleosome positions has led to an explosion of information about how nucleosomes are assembled at transcription start sites, but no similar maps exist for DNA replication origins. Here we combine high-resolution genome-wide nucleosome maps with comprehensive annotations of DNA replication origins to identify patterns of nucleosome occupancy at eukaryotic replication origins. On average, replication origins contain a nucleosome depleted region centered next to the ACS element, flanked on both sides by arrays of well-positioned nucleosomes. Our analysis identified DNA sequence properties that correlate with nucleosome occupancy at replication origins genome-wide and that are correlated with the nucleosome-depleted region. Clustering analysis of all annotated replication origins revealed a surprising diversity of nucleosome occupancy patterns. We provide evidence that the origin recognition complex, which binds to the origin, acts as a barrier element to position and phase nucleosomes on both sides of the origin. Finally, analysis of chromatin reconstituted in vitro reveals that origins are inherently nucleosome depleted. Together our data provide a comprehensive, genome-wide view of chromatin structure at replication origins and suggest a model of nucleosome positioning at replication origins in which the underlying sequence occludes nucleosomes to permit binding of the origin recognition complex, which then (likely in concert with nucleosome modifiers and remodelers positions nucleosomes adjacent to the origin to promote replication origin function.

  6. Eukaryotic and prokaryotic promoter databases as valuable tools in exploring the regulation of gene transcription: a comprehensive overview. (United States)

    Majewska, Małgorzata; Wysokińska, Halina; Kuźma, Łukasz; Szymczyk, Piotr


    The complete exploration of the regulation of gene expression remains one of the top-priority goals for researchers. As the regulation is mainly controlled at the level of transcription by promoters, study on promoters and findings are of great importance. This review summarizes forty selected databases that centralize experimental and theoretical knowledge regarding the organization of promoters, interacting transcription factors (TFs) and microRNAs (miRNAs) in many eukaryotic and prokaryotic species. The presented databases offer researchers valuable support in elucidating the regulation of gene transcription. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Eukaryotic genomes may exhibit up to 10 generic classes of gene promoters

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    Gagniuc Paul


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The main function of gene promoters appears to be the integration of different gene products in their biological pathways in order to maintain homeostasis. Generally, promoters have been classified in two major classes, namely TATA and CpG. Nevertheless, many genes using the same combinatorial formation of transcription factors have different gene expression patterns. Accordingly, we tried to ask ourselves some fundamental questions: Why certain genes have an overall predisposition for higher gene expression levels than others? What causes such a predisposition? Is there a structural relationship of these sequences in different tissues? Is there a strong phylogenetic relationship between promoters of closely related species? Results In order to gain valuable insights into different promoter regions, we obtained a series of image-based patterns which allowed us to identify 10 generic classes of promoters. A comprehensive analysis was undertaken for promoter sequences from Arabidopsis thaliana, Drosophila melanogaster, Homo sapiens and Oryza sativa, and a more extensive analysis of tissue-specific promoters in humans. We observed a clear preference for these species to use certain classes of promoters for specific biological processes. Moreover, in humans, we found that different tissues use distinct classes of promoters, reflecting an emerging promoter network. Depending on the tissue type, comparisons made between these classes of promoters reveal a complementarity between their patterns whereas some other classes of promoters have been observed to occur in competition. Furthermore, we also noticed the existence of some transitional states between these classes of promoters that may explain certain evolutionary mechanisms, which suggest a possible predisposition for specific levels of gene expression and perhaps for a different number of factors responsible for triggering gene expression. Our conclusions are based on

  8. Production and characterization of novel recombinant adeno-associated virus replicative-form genomes: a eukaryotic source of DNA for gene transfer.

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    Lina Li

    Full Text Available Conventional non-viral gene transfer uses bacterial plasmid DNA containing antibiotic resistance genes, cis-acting bacterial sequence elements, and prokaryotic methylation patterns that may adversely affect transgene expression and vector stability in vivo. Here, we describe novel replicative forms of a eukaryotic vector DNA that consist solely of an expression cassette flanked by adeno-associated virus (AAV inverted terminal repeats. Extensive structural analyses revealed that this AAV-derived vector DNA consists of linear, duplex molecules with covalently closed ends (termed closed-ended, linear duplex, or "CELiD", DNA. CELiD vectors, produced in Sf9 insect cells, require AAV rep gene expression for amplification. Amounts of CELiD DNA produced from insect cell lines stably transfected with an ITR-flanked transgene exceeded 60 mg per 5 × 10(9 Sf9 cells, and 1-15 mg from a comparable number of parental Sf9 cells in which the transgene was introduced via recombinant baculovirus infection. In mice, systemically delivered CELiD DNA resulted in long-term, stable transgene expression in the liver. CELiD vectors represent a novel eukaryotic alternative to bacterial plasmid DNA.

  9. The quaternary structure of the eukaryotic DNA replication proteins Sld7 and Sld3. (United States)

    Itou, Hiroshi; Shirakihara, Yasuo; Araki, Hiroyuki


    The initiation of eukaryotic chromosomal DNA replication requires the formation of an active replicative helicase at the replication origins of chromosomes. Yeast Sld3 and its metazoan counterpart treslin are the hub proteins mediating protein associations critical for formation of the helicase. The Sld7 protein interacts with Sld3, and the complex formed is thought to regulate the function of Sld3. Although Sld7 is a non-essential DNA replication protein that is found in only a limited range of yeasts, its depletion slowed the growth of cells and caused a delay in the S phase. Recently, the Mdm2-binding protein was found to bind to treslin in humans, and its depletion causes defects in cells similar to the depletion of Sld7 in yeast, suggesting their functional relatedness and importance during the initiation step of DNA replication. Here, the crystal structure of Sld7 in complex with Sld3 is presented. Sld7 comprises two structural domains. The N-terminal domain of Sld7 binds to Sld3, and the C-terminal domains connect two Sld7 molecules in an antiparallel manner. The quaternary structure of the Sld3-Sld7 complex shown from the crystal structures appears to be suitable to activate two helicase molecules loaded onto replication origins in a head-to-head manner.

  10. Effect of disinfectant, water age, and pipe materials on bacterial and eukaryotic community structure in drinking water biofilm. (United States)

    Wang, Hong; Masters, Sheldon; Edwards, Marc A; Falkinham, Joseph O; Pruden, Amy


    Availability of safe, pathogen-free drinking water is vital to public health; however, it is impossible to deliver sterile drinking water to consumers. Recent microbiome research is bringing new understanding to the true extent and diversity of microbes that inhabit water distribution systems. The purpose of this study was to determine how water chemistry in main distribution lines shape the microbiome in drinking water biofilms and to explore potential associations between opportunistic pathogens and indigenous drinking water microbes. Effects of disinfectant (chloramines, chlorine), water age (2.3 days, 5.7 days), and pipe material (cement, iron, PVC) were compared in parallel triplicate simulated water distribution systems. Pyrosequencing was employed to characterize bacteria and terminal restriction fragment polymorphism was used to profile both bacteria and eukaryotes inhabiting pipe biofilms. Disinfectant and water age were both observed to be strong factors in shaping bacterial and eukaryotic community structures. Pipe material only influenced the bacterial community structure (ANOSIM test, P water age on both bacteria and eukaryotes were noted. Disinfectant concentration had the strongest effect on bacteria, while dissolved oxygen appeared to be a major driver for eukaryotes (BEST test). Several correlations of similarity metrics among populations of bacteria, eukaryotes, and opportunistic pathogens, as well as one significant association between mycobacterial and proteobacterial operational taxonomic units, provides insight into means by which manipulating the microbiome may lead to new avenues for limiting the growth of opportunistic pathogens (e.g., Legionella) or other nuisance organisms (e.g., nitrifiers).

  11. The structure of TON1937 from archaeon Thermococcus onnurineus NA1 reveals a eukaryotic HEAT-like architecture. (United States)

    Jeong, Jae-Hee; Kim, Yi-Seul; Rojviriya, Catleya; Cha, Hyung Jin; Ha, Sung-Chul; Kim, Yeon-Gil


    The members of the ARM/HEAT repeat-containing protein superfamily in eukaryotes have been known to mediate protein-protein interactions by using their concave surface. However, little is known about the ARM/HEAT repeat proteins in prokaryotes. Here we report the crystal structure of TON1937, a hypothetical protein from the hyperthermophilic archaeon Thermococcus onnurineus NA1. The structure reveals a crescent-shaped molecule composed of a double layer of α-helices with seven anti-parallel α-helical repeats. A structure-based sequence alignment of the α-helical repeats identified a conserved pattern of hydrophobic or aliphatic residues reminiscent of the consensus sequence of eukaryotic HEAT repeats. The individual repeats of TON1937 also share high structural similarity with the canonical eukaryotic HEAT repeats. In addition, the concave surface of TON1937 is proposed to be its potential binding interface based on this structural comparison and its surface properties. These observations lead us to speculate that the archaeal HEAT-like repeats of TON1937 have evolved to engage in protein-protein interactions in the same manner as eukaryotic HEAT repeats. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Phylogenetic analysis of eukaryotic NEET proteins uncovers a link between a key gene duplication event and the evolution of vertebrates (United States)

    Inupakutika, Madhuri A.; Sengupta, Soham; Nechushtai, Rachel; Jennings, Patricia A.; Onuchic, Jose' N.; Azad, Rajeev K.; Padilla, Pamela; Mittler, Ron


    NEET proteins belong to a unique family of iron-sulfur proteins in which the 2Fe-2S cluster is coordinated by a CDGSH domain that is followed by the “NEET” motif. They are involved in the regulation of iron and reactive oxygen metabolism, and have been associated with the progression of diabetes, cancer, aging and neurodegenerative diseases. Despite their important biological functions, the evolution and diversification of eukaryotic NEET proteins are largely unknown. Here we used the three members of the human NEET protein family (CISD1, mitoNEET; CISD2, NAF-1 or Miner 1; and CISD3, Miner2) as our guides to conduct a phylogenetic analysis of eukaryotic NEET proteins and their evolution. Our findings identified the slime mold Dictyostelium discoideum’s CISD proteins as the closest to the ancient archetype of eukaryotic NEET proteins. We further identified CISD3 homologs in fungi that were previously reported not to contain any NEET proteins, and revealed that plants lack homolog(s) of CISD3. Furthermore, our study suggests that the mammalian NEET proteins, mitoNEET (CISD1) and NAF-1 (CISD2), emerged via gene duplication around the origin of vertebrates. Our findings provide new insights into the classification and expansion of the NEET protein family, as well as offer clues to the diverged functions of the human mitoNEET and NAF-1 proteins.

  13. Construction and expression of eukaryotic expression vectors of full-length, amino-terminus and carboxyl-terminus Raf gene

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    Zhuomin WANG


    Full Text Available Background and objective Raf is a key molecule in the Ras-Raf-MEK-ERK signal transduction pathway and is highly activated in different human carcinomas. However, its biological functions and regulation mechanisms are still unclear. The aims of this study were to construct eukaryotic expression vectors with Raf full encoding region, truncated amino-terminus and carboxyl-terminus, respectively. Methods Eukaryotic expression vectors of pCMV-Tag2b-Raf-1, pCMV-Tag2b-N-Raf and pCMV-Tag2b-C-Raf were constructed by gene recombination technique and confirmed by restriction enzyme analysis and DNA sequencing. Furthermore, the expression of these fusion proteins was detected by western blot in transient transfected 293T cells. Results The sequences and open reading frames of these three vectors were completely consistent with experimental design. All target proteins can be detected in 293T cells. Conclusion Eukaryotic expression vectors of pCMV-Tag2b-Raf-1, pCMV-Tag2b-N-Raf and pCMV-Tag2b-C-Raf were successfully constructed and can be expressed in 293T cells.

  14. Insight into structure and assembly of the nuclear pore complex by utilizing the genome of a eukaryotic thermophile

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Amlacher, Stefan; Sarges, Phillip; Flemming, Dirk


    Despite decades of research, the structure and assembly of the nuclear pore complex (NPC), which is composed of ~30 nucleoporins (Nups), remain elusive. Here, we report the genome of the thermophilic fungus Chaetomium thermophilum (ct) and identify the complete repertoire of Nups therein. The the...... of a thermophilic eukaryote for studying complex molecular machines....

  15. The structural basis of substrate recognition by the eukaryotic chaperonin TRiC/CCT. (United States)

    Joachimiak, Lukasz A; Walzthoeni, Thomas; Liu, Corey W; Aebersold, Ruedi; Frydman, Judith


    The eukaryotic chaperonin TRiC (also called CCT) is the obligate chaperone for many essential proteins. TRiC is hetero-oligomeric, comprising two stacked rings of eight different subunits each. Subunit diversification from simpler archaeal chaperonins appears linked to proteome expansion. Here, we integrate structural, biophysical, and modeling approaches to identify the hitherto unknown substrate-binding site in TRiC and uncover the basis of substrate recognition. NMR and modeling provided a structural model of a chaperonin-substrate complex. Mutagenesis and crosslinking-mass spectrometry validated the identified substrate-binding interface and demonstrate that TRiC contacts full-length substrates combinatorially in a subunit-specific manner. The binding site of each subunit has a distinct, evolutionarily conserved pattern of polar and hydrophobic residues specifying recognition of discrete substrate motifs. The combinatorial recognition of polypeptides broadens the specificity of TRiC and may direct the topology of bound polypeptides along a productive folding trajectory, contributing to TRiC's unique ability to fold obligate substrates.

  16. Molecular Data are Transforming Hypotheses on the Origin and Diversification of Eukaryotes. (United States)

    Tekle, Yonas I; Parfrey, Laura Wegener; Katz, Laura A


    The explosion of molecular data has transformed hypotheses on both the origin of eukaryotes and the structure of the eukaryotic tree of life. Early ideas about the evolution of eukaryotes arose through analyses of morphology by light microscopy and later electron microscopy. Though such studies have proven powerful at resolving more recent events, theories on origins and diversification of eukaryotic life have been substantially revised in light of analyses of molecular data including gene and, increasingly, whole genome sequences. By combining these approaches, progress has been made in elucidating both the origin and diversification of eukaryotes. Yet many aspects of the evolution of eukaryotic life remain to be illuminated.

  17. Molecular Data are Transforming Hypotheses on the Origin and Diversification of Eukaryotes


    Tekle, Yonas I.; Parfrey, Laura Wegener; Katz, Laura A.


    The explosion of molecular data has transformed hypotheses on both the origin of eukaryotes and the structure of the eukaryotic tree of life. Early ideas about the evolution of eukaryotes arose through analyses of morphology by light microscopy and later electron microscopy. Though such studies have proven powerful at resolving more recent events, theories on origins and diversification of eukaryotic life have been substantially revised in light of analyses of molecular data including gene an...

  18. Structure and Dynamics of Membrane Proteins and Membrane Associated Proteins with Native Bicelles from Eukaryotic Tissues. (United States)

    Smrt, Sean T; Draney, Adrian W; Singaram, Indira; Lorieau, Justin L


    In vitro studies of protein structure, function, and dynamics typically preclude the complex range of molecular interactions found in living tissues. In vivo studies elucidate these complex relationships, yet they are typically incompatible with the extensive and controlled biophysical experiments available in vitro. We present an alternative approach by extracting membranes from eukaryotic tissues to produce native bicelles to capture the rich and complex molecular environment of in vivo studies while retaining the advantages of in vitro experiments. Native bicelles derived from chicken egg or mouse cerebrum tissues contain a rich composition of phosphatidylcholine (PC), phosphatidylethanolamine (PE), phosphatidylglycerol (PG), phosphatidylserine (PS), phosphatidylinositol (PI), phosphatidic acid (PA), lysolipids, cholesterol, ceramides (CM), and sphingomyelin (SM). The bicelles also contain source-specific lipids such as triacylglycerides (TAGs) and sulfatides from egg and brain tissues, respectively. With the influenza hemagglutinin fusion peptide (HAfp) and the C-terminal Src homology domain of lymphocyte-specific protein-tyrosine kinase (lck-cSH2), we show that membrane proteins and membrane associated proteins reconstituted in native bicelles produce high-resolution NMR data and probe native protein-lipid interactions.

  19. Surprising prokaryotic and eukaryotic diversity, community structure and biogeography of Ethiopian soda lakes.

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    Anders Lanzén

    Full Text Available Soda lakes are intriguing ecosystems harboring extremely productive microbial communities in spite of their extreme environmental conditions. This makes them valuable model systems for studying the connection between community structure and abiotic parameters such as pH and salinity. For the first time, we apply high-throughput sequencing to accurately estimate phylogenetic richness and composition in five soda lakes, located in the Ethiopian Rift Valley. The lakes were selected for their contrasting pH, salinities and stratification and several depths or spatial positions were covered in each lake. DNA was extracted and analyzed from all lakes at various depths and RNA extracted from two of the lakes, analyzed using both amplicon- and shotgun sequencing. We reveal a surprisingly high biodiversity in all of the studied lakes, similar to that of freshwater lakes. Interestingly, diversity appeared uncorrelated or positively correlated to pH and salinity, with the most "extreme" lakes showing the highest richness. Together, pH, dissolved oxygen, sodium- and potassium concentration explained approximately 30% of the compositional variation between samples. A diversity of prokaryotic and eukaryotic taxa could be identified, including several putatively involved in carbon-, sulfur- or nitrogen cycling. Key processes like methane oxidation, ammonia oxidation and 'nitrifier denitrification' were also confirmed by mRNA transcript analyses.

  20. The human SUMF1 gene, required for posttranslational sulfatase modification, defines a new gene family which is conserved from pro- to eukaryotes. (United States)

    Landgrebe, Jobst; Dierks, Thomas; Schmidt, Bernhard; von Figura, Kurt


    Recently, the human C(alpha)-formylglycine (FGly)-generating enzyme (FGE), whose deficiency causes the autosomal-recessively transmitted lysosomal storage disease multiple sulfatase deficiency (MSD), has been identified. In sulfatases, FGE posttranslationally converts a cysteine residue to FGly, which is part of the catalytic site and is essential for sulfatase activity. FGE is encoded by the sulfatase modifying factor 1 (SUMF1) gene, which defines a new gene family comprising orthologs from prokaryotes to higher eukaryotes. The genomes of E. coli, S. cerevisiae and C. elegans lack SUMF1, indicating a phylogenetic gap and the existence of an alternative FGly-generating system. The genomes of vertebrates including mouse, man and pufferfish contain a sulfatase modifying factor 2 (SUMF2) gene encoding an FGE paralog of unknown function. SUMF2 evolved from a single exon SUMF1 gene as found in diptera prior to divergent intron acquisition. In several prokaryotic genomes, the SUMF1 gene is cotranscribed with genes encoding sulfatases which require FGly modification. The FGE protein contains a single domain that is made up of three highly conserved subdomains spaced by nonconserved sequences of variable lengths. The similarity among the eukaryotic FGE orthologs varies between 72% and 100% for the three subdomains and is highest for the C-terminal subdomain, which is a hotspot for mutations in MSD patients.

  1. Comparative genomics and evolution of eukaryotic phospholipidbiosynthesis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lykidis, Athanasios


    Phospholipid biosynthetic enzymes produce diverse molecular structures and are often present in multiple forms encoded by different genes. This work utilizes comparative genomics and phylogenetics for exploring the distribution, structure and evolution of phospholipid biosynthetic genes and pathways in 26 eukaryotic genomes. Although the basic structure of the pathways was formed early in eukaryotic evolution, the emerging picture indicates that individual enzyme families followed unique evolutionary courses. For example, choline and ethanolamine kinases and cytidylyltransferases emerged in ancestral eukaryotes, whereas, multiple forms of the corresponding phosphatidyltransferases evolved mainly in a lineage specific manner. Furthermore, several unicellular eukaryotes maintain bacterial-type enzymes and reactions for the synthesis of phosphatidylglycerol and cardiolipin. Also, base-exchange phosphatidylserine synthases are widespread and ancestral enzymes. The multiplicity of phospholipid biosynthetic enzymes has been largely generated by gene expansion in a lineage specific manner. Thus, these observations suggest that phospholipid biosynthesis has been an actively evolving system. Finally, comparative genomic analysis indicates the existence of novel phosphatidyltransferases and provides a candidate for the uncharacterized eukaryotic phosphatidylglycerol phosphate phosphatase.

  2. The ARTT motif and a unified structural understanding of substraterecognition in ADP ribosylating bacterial toxins and eukaryotic ADPribosyltransferases

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Han, S.; Tainer, J.A.


    ADP-ribosylation is a widely occurring and biologically critical covalent chemical modification process in pathogenic mechanisms, intracellular signaling systems, DNA repair, and cell division. The reaction is catalyzed by ADP-ribosyltransferases, which transfer the ADP-ribose moiety of NAD to a target protein with nicotinamide release. A family of bacterial toxins and eukaryotic enzymes has been termed the mono-ADP-ribosyltransferases, in distinction to the poly-ADP-ribosyltransferases, which catalyze the addition of multiple ADP-ribose groups to the carboxyl terminus of eukaryotic nucleoproteins. Despite the limited primary sequence homology among the different ADP-ribosyltransferases, a central cleft bearing NAD-binding pocket formed by the two perpendicular b-sheet core has been remarkably conserved between bacterial toxins and eukaryotic mono- and poly-ADP-ribosyltransferases. The majority of bacterial toxins and eukaryotic mono-ADP-ribosyltransferases are characterized by conserved His and catalytic Glu residues. In contrast, Diphtheria toxin, Pseudomonas exotoxin A, and eukaryotic poly-ADP-ribosyltransferases are characterized by conserved Arg and catalytic Glu residues. The NAD-binding core of a binary toxin and a C3-like toxin family identified an ARTT motif (ADP-ribosylating turn-turn motif) that is implicated in substrate specificity and recognition by structural and mutagenic studies. Here we apply structure-based sequence alignment and comparative structural analyses of all known structures of ADP-ribosyltransfeases to suggest that this ARTT motif is functionally important in many ADP-ribosylating enzymes that bear a NAD binding cleft as characterized by conserved Arg and catalytic Glu residues. Overall, structure-based sequence analysis reveals common core structures and conserved active sites of ADP-ribosyltransferases to support similar NAD binding mechanisms but differing mechanisms of target protein binding via sequence variations within the ARTT

  3. Comparative genomics of Eukaryotes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Noort, Vera van


    This thesis focuses on developing comparative genomics methods in eukaryotes, with an emphasis on applications for gene function prediction and regulatory element detection. In the past, methods have been developed to predict functional associations between gene pairs in prokaryotes. The challenge

  4. Gene co-regulation is highly conserved in the evolution of eukaryotes and prokaryotes.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Snel, B.; Noort, V. van; Huynen, M.A.


    Differences between species have been suggested to largely reside in the network of connections among the genes. Nevertheless, the rate at which these connections evolve has not been properly quantified. Here, we measure the extent to which co-regulation between pairs of genes is conserved over

  5. Structural basis for the initiation of eukaryotic transcription-coupled DNA repair


    Xu, Jun; Lahiri, Indrajit; Wang, Wei; Wier, Adam; Cianfrocco, Michael A.; Chong, Jenny; Hare, Alissa A.; Dervan, Peter B.; DiMaio, Frank; Leschziner, Andres E.; Wang, Dong


    Eukaryotic transcription-coupled repair (TCR) is an important and well-conserved sub-pathway of nucleotide excision repair that preferentially removes DNA lesions from the template strand that block translocation of RNA polymerase II (Pol II). Cockayne syndrome group B (CSB, also known as ERCC6) protein in humans (or its yeast orthologues, Rad26 in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Rhp26 in Schizosaccharomyces pombe) is among the first proteins to be recruited to the lesion-arrested Pol II during ...

  6. Of bits and bugs--on the use of bioinformatics and a bacterial crystal structure to solve a eukaryotic repeat-protein structure.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Almut Graebsch

    Full Text Available Pur-α is a nucleic acid-binding protein involved in cell cycle control, transcription, and neuronal function. Initially no prediction of the three-dimensional structure of Pur-α was possible. However, recently we solved the X-ray structure of Pur-α from the fruitfly Drosophila melanogaster and showed that it contains a so-called PUR domain. Here we explain how we exploited bioinformatics tools in combination with X-ray structure determination of a bacterial homolog to obtain diffracting crystals and the high-resolution structure of Drosophila Pur-α. First, we used sensitive methods for remote-homology detection to find three repetitive regions in Pur-α. We realized that our lack of understanding how these repeats interact to form a globular domain was a major problem for crystallization and structure determination. With our information on the repeat motifs we then identified a distant bacterial homolog that contains only one repeat. We determined the bacterial crystal structure and found that two of the repeats interact to form a globular domain. Based on this bacterial structure, we calculated a computational model of the eukaryotic protein. The model allowed us to design a crystallizable fragment and to determine the structure of Drosophila Pur-α. Key for success was the fact that single repeats of the bacterial protein self-assembled into a globular domain, instructing us on the number and boundaries of repeats to be included for crystallization trials with the eukaryotic protein. This study demonstrates that the simpler structural domain arrangement of a distant prokaryotic protein can guide the design of eukaryotic crystallization constructs. Since many eukaryotic proteins contain multiple repeats or repeating domains, this approach might be instructive for structural studies of a range of proteins.

  7. Construction of a recombinant eukaryotic human ZHX1 gene expression plasmid and the role of ZHX1 in hepatocellular carcinoma. (United States)

    Wang, Jianping; Liu, Dejie; Liang, Xiaohong; Gao, Lifen; Yue, Xuetian; Yang, Yang; Ma, Chunhong; Liu, Jun


    The zinc-fingers and homeoboxes protein 1 (ZHX1) consists of 873 amino acid residues, is localized in the cell nucleus and appears to act as a transcriptional repressor. Previous studies have shown that ZHX1 interacts with nuclear factor Y subunit α (NF-YA), DNA methyltransferases (DNMT) 3B and ZHX2, all of which are involved in tumorigenesis. However, the exact role of ZHX1 in tumorigenesis remains unknown. The aim of the current study was to construct a recombinant eukaryotic expression plasmid containing the human ZHX1 (hZHX1) gene and to investigate the biological activities of ZHX1 in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT‑PCR) was used to amplify the N- and C-terminal fragments (ZHX1‑N and ZHX1‑C, respectively) of the hZHX1 gene. The two PCR fragments were cloned into the pEASY-T1 vector and subcloned into the pcDNA3 plasmid to generate a recombinant pcDNA3‑ZHX1 plasmid. Following identification by enzyme digestion and DNA sequencing, the recombinant pcDNA3‑ZHX1 plasmid was transfected into SMMC-7721 cells. The level of ZHX1 expression was detected by RT-PCR and western blot analysis. Cell growth curve assays were used to evaluate the effect of ZHX1 on cell proliferation. Moreover, the differential expression of ZHX1 between cancer and adjacent cirrhotic liver tissue was investigated by quantitative PCR (qPCR). Enzyme digestion and DNA sequencing confirmed the successful construction of the recombinant plasmid, pcDNA3‑ZHX1. qPCR and western blot analysis demonstrated that ZHX1 was efficiently expressed in SMMC-7721 cells and overexpression of ZHX1 may inhibit the proliferation of SMMC-7721 cells. In addition, reduced ZHX1 expression is widespread among cancer tissues from HCC patients. In conclusion, a recombinant eukaryotic expression plasmid, pcDNA3‑ZHX1, was successfully constructed. In addition, the current results indicate that a low expression of ZHX1 may be responsible for hepatocarcinogenesis.

  8. Applications of Recombinant Dna Technology in Gastrointestinal Medicine and Hepatology: Basic Paradigms of Molecular Cell Biology. Part B: Eukaryotic Gene Transcription and Post-Transcripional Rna Processing

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    Gary E Wild


    Full Text Available The transcription of DNA into RNA is the primary level at which gene expression is controlled in eukaryotic cells. Eukaryotic gene transcription  involves several different RNA polymerases that interact with a host of transcription factors to initiate transcription. Genes that encode proteins are transcribed into messenger RNA (mRNA by RNA polymerase II. Ribosomal RNAs (rRNAs and transfer RNAs (tRNAs are transcribed by RNA polymerase I and III, respectively.  The production of each mRNA in human cells involves complex interactions of proteins (ie, trans-acting factors with specific sequences on the DNA (ie, cis-acting elements. Cis-acting elements are short base sequences adjacent to or within a particular gene. While the regulation of transcription is a pivotal step in the control of gene expression, a variety of molecular events, collectively known as ’RNA processing’  add an additional level of control of gene expression in eukaryotic cells.

  9. Structural organization of very small chromosomes: study on a single-celled evolutionary distant eukaryote Giardia intestinalis. (United States)

    Tůmová, Pavla; Uzlíková, Magdalena; Wanner, Gerhard; Nohýnková, Eva


    During mitotic prophase, chromosomes of the pathogenic unicellular eukaryote Giardia intestinalis condense in each of the cell's two nuclei. In this study, Giardia chromosomes were investigated using light microscopy, high-resolution field emission scanning electron microscopy, and in situ hybridization. For the first time, we describe the overall morphology, condensation stages, and mitotic segregation of these chromosomes. Despite the absence of several genes involved in the cohesion and condensation pathways in the Giardia genome, we observed chromatin organization similar to those found in eukaryotes, i.e., 10-nm nucleosomal fibrils, 30-nm fibrils coiled to chromomeres or in parallel arrangements, and closely aligned sister chromatids. DNA molecules of Giardia terminate with telomeric repeats that we visualized on each of the four chromatid endings of metaphase chromosomes. Giardia chromosomes lack primary and secondary constrictions, thus preventing their classification based on the position of the centromere. The anaphase poleward segregation of sister chromatids is atypical in orientation and tends to generate lagging chromatids between daughter nuclei. In the Giardia genome database, we identified two putative members of the kleisin family thought to be responsible for condensin ring establishment. Thus far, Giardia chromosomes (300 nm to 1.5 μm) are the smallest chromosomes that were analyzed at the ultrastructural level. This study complements the existing molecular and sequencing data on Giardia chromosomes with cytological and ultrastructural information.

  10. Origins and evolution of viruses of eukaryotes: The ultimate modularity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Koonin, Eugene V., E-mail: [National Center for Biotechnology Information, National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20894 (United States); Dolja, Valerian V., E-mail: [Department of Botany and Plant Pathology, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331 (United States); Krupovic, Mart, E-mail: [Institut Pasteur, Unité Biologie Moléculaire du Gène chez les Extrêmophiles, Department of Microbiology, Paris 75015 (France)


    Viruses and other selfish genetic elements are dominant entities in the biosphere, with respect to both physical abundance and genetic diversity. Various selfish elements parasitize on all cellular life forms. The relative abundances of different classes of viruses are dramatically different between prokaryotes and eukaryotes. In prokaryotes, the great majority of viruses possess double-stranded (ds) DNA genomes, with a substantial minority of single-stranded (ss) DNA viruses and only limited presence of RNA viruses. In contrast, in eukaryotes, RNA viruses account for the majority of the virome diversity although ssDNA and dsDNA viruses are common as well. Phylogenomic analysis yields tangible clues for the origins of major classes of eukaryotic viruses and in particular their likely roots in prokaryotes. Specifically, the ancestral genome of positive-strand RNA viruses of eukaryotes might have been assembled de novo from genes derived from prokaryotic retroelements and bacteria although a primordial origin of this class of viruses cannot be ruled out. Different groups of double-stranded RNA viruses derive either from dsRNA bacteriophages or from positive-strand RNA viruses. The eukaryotic ssDNA viruses apparently evolved via a fusion of genes from prokaryotic rolling circle-replicating plasmids and positive-strand RNA viruses. Different families of eukaryotic dsDNA viruses appear to have originated from specific groups of bacteriophages on at least two independent occasions. Polintons, the largest known eukaryotic transposons, predicted to also form virus particles, most likely, were the evolutionary intermediates between bacterial tectiviruses and several groups of eukaryotic dsDNA viruses including the proposed order “Megavirales” that unites diverse families of large and giant viruses. Strikingly, evolution of all classes of eukaryotic viruses appears to have involved fusion between structural and replicative gene modules derived from different sources

  11. Discovery of novel DENN proteins: implications for the evolution of eukaryotic intracellular membrane structures and human disease

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    Dapeng eZhang


    Full Text Available The tripartite DENN module, comprised of a N-terminal longin domain, followed by DENN and d-DENN domains, is a GDP-GTP exchange factor (GEFs for Rab GTPases, which are regulators of practically all membrane trafficking events in eukaryotes. Using sequence and structure analysis we identify multiple novel homologs of the DENN module, many of which can be traced back to the ancestral eukaryote. These findings provide unexpected leads regarding key cellular processes such as autophagy, vesicle-vacuole interactions, chromosome segregation and human disease. Of these, SMCR8, the folliculin interacting protein-1 and 2 (FNIP1 and FNIP2, nitrogen permease regulator 2 (NPR2 and NPR3 are proposed to function in recruiting Rab GTPases during different steps of autophagy, fusion of autophagosomes with the vacuole and regulation of cellular metabolism. Another novel DENN protein identified in this study is C9ORF72; expansions of the hexanucleotide GGGGCC in its first intron have been recently implicated in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS and fronto-temporal dementia (FTD. While this mutation is proposed to cause a RNA-level defect, the identification of C9ORF72 as a potential DENN-type GEF raises the possibility that at least part of the pathology might relate to a specific Rab-dependent vesicular trafficking process, as has been observed in the case of some other neurological conditions with similar phenotypes. We present evidence that the longin domain, such as those found in the DENN module, are likely to have been ultimately derived from the related domains found in prokaryotic GTPase-activating proteins of MglA-like GTPases. Thus, the origin of the longin domains from this ancient GTPase-interacting domain, concomitant with the radiation of GTPases, especially of the Rab clade, played an important role in the dynamics of eukaryotic intracellular membrane systems.

  12. Discovery of Novel DENN Proteins: Implications for the Evolution of Eukaryotic Intracellular Membrane Structures and Human Disease. (United States)

    Zhang, Dapeng; Iyer, Lakshminarayan M; He, Fang; Aravind, L


    The tripartite DENN module, comprised of a N-terminal longin domain, followed by DENN, and d-DENN domains, is a GDP-GTP exchange factor (GEFs) for Rab GTPases, which are regulators of practically all membrane trafficking events in eukaryotes. Using sequence and structure analysis we identify multiple novel homologs of the DENN module, many of which can be traced back to the ancestral eukaryote. These findings provide unexpected leads regarding key cellular processes such as autophagy, vesicle-vacuole interactions, chromosome segregation, and human disease. Of these, SMCR8, the folliculin interacting protein-1 and 2 (FNIP1 and FNIP2), nitrogen permease regulator 2 (NPR2), and NPR3 are proposed to function in recruiting Rab GTPases during different steps of autophagy, fusion of autophagosomes with the vacuole and regulation of cellular metabolism. Another novel DENN protein identified in this study is C9ORF72; expansions of the hexanucleotide GGGGCC in its first intron have been recently implicated in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and fronto-temporal dementia (FTD). While this mutation is proposed to cause a RNA-level defect, the identification of C9ORF72 as a potential DENN-type GEF raises the possibility that at least part of the pathology might relate to a specific Rab-dependent vesicular trafficking process, as has been observed in the case of some other neurological conditions with similar phenotypes. We present evidence that the longin domain, such as those found in the DENN module, are likely to have been ultimately derived from the related domains found in prokaryotic GTPase-activating proteins of MglA-like GTPases. Thus, the origin of the longin domains from this ancient GTPase-interacting domain, concomitant with the radiation of GTPases, especially of the Rab clade, played an important role in the dynamics of eukaryotic intracellular membrane systems.

  13. Camps 2.0: exploring the sequence and structure space of prokaryotic, eukaryotic, and viral membrane proteins. (United States)

    Neumann, Sindy; Hartmann, Holger; Martin-Galiano, Antonio J; Fuchs, Angelika; Frishman, Dmitrij


    Structural bioinformatics of membrane proteins is still in its infancy, and the picture of their fold space is only beginning to emerge. Because only a handful of three-dimensional structures are available, sequence comparison and structure prediction remain the main tools for investigating sequence-structure relationships in membrane protein families. Here we present a comprehensive analysis of the structural families corresponding to α-helical membrane proteins with at least three transmembrane helices. The new version of our CAMPS database (CAMPS 2.0) covers nearly 1300 eukaryotic, prokaryotic, and viral genomes. Using an advanced classification procedure, which is based on high-order hidden Markov models and considers both sequence similarity as well as the number of transmembrane helices and loop lengths, we identified 1353 structurally homogeneous clusters roughly corresponding to membrane protein folds. Only 53 clusters are associated with experimentally determined three-dimensional structures, and for these clusters CAMPS is in reasonable agreement with structure-based classification approaches such as SCOP and CATH. We therefore estimate that ∼1300 structures would need to be determined to provide a sufficient structural coverage of polytopic membrane proteins. CAMPS 2.0 is available at Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  14. Mitochondrion-related organelles in eukaryotic protists. (United States)

    Shiflett, April M; Johnson, Patricia J


    The discovery of mitochondrion-type genes in organisms thought to lack mitochondria led to the demonstration that hydrogenosomes share a common ancestry with mitochondria, as well as the discovery of mitosomes in multiple eukaryotic lineages. No examples of examined eukaryotes lacking a mitochondrion-related organelle exist, implying that the endosymbiont that gave rise to the mitochondrion was present in the first eukaryote. These organelles, known as hydrogenosomes, mitosomes, or mitochondrion-like organelles, are typically reduced, both structurally and biochemically, relative to classical mitochondria. However, despite their diversification and adaptation to different niches, all appear to play a role in Fe-S cluster assembly, as observed for mitochondria. Although evidence supports the use of common protein targeting mechanisms in the biogenesis of these diverse organelles, divergent features are also apparent. This review examines the metabolism and biogenesis of these organelles in divergent unicellular microbes, with a focus on parasitic protists.

  15. Structures of eukaryotic ribosomal stalk proteins and its complex with trichosanthin, and their implications in recruiting ribosome-inactivating proteins to the ribosomes. (United States)

    Choi, Andrew K H; Wong, Eddie C K; Lee, Ka-Ming; Wong, Kam-Bo


    Ribosome-inactivating proteins (RIP) are RNA N-glycosidases that inactivate ribosomes by specifically depurinating a conserved adenine residue at the α-sarcin/ricin loop of 28S rRNA. Recent studies have pointed to the involvement of the C-terminal domain of the eukaryotic stalk proteins in facilitating the toxic action of RIPs. This review highlights how structural studies of eukaryotic stalk proteins provide insights into the recruitment of RIPs to the ribosomes. Since the C-terminal domain of eukaryotic stalk proteins is involved in specific recognition of elongation factors and some eukaryote-specific RIPs (e.g., trichosanthin and ricin), we postulate that these RIPs may have evolved to hijack the translation-factor-recruiting function of ribosomal stalk in reaching their target site of rRNA.

  16. Bacterial eukaryotic type serine-threonine protein kinases: from structural biology to targeted anti-infective drug design. (United States)

    Danilenko, Valery N; Osolodkin, Dmitry I; Lakatosh, Sergey A; Preobrazhenskaya, Maria N; Shtil, Alexander A


    Signaling through protein kinases is an evolutionary conserved, widespread language of biological regulation. The eukaryotic type serine-threonine protein kinases (STPKs) found in normal human microbiote and in pathogenic bacteria play a key role in regulation of microbial survival, virulence and pathogenicity. Therefore, down-regulation of bacterial STPKs emerges as an attractive approach to cure infections. In this review we focused on actinobacterial STPKs to demonstrate that these enzymes can be used for crystal structure studies, modeling of 3D structure, construction of test systems and design of novel chemical libraries of low molecule as weight inhibitors. In particular, the prototypic pharmacological antagonists of Mycobacterium tuberculosis STPKs are perspective for development of a novel generation of drugs to combat the socially important disease. These inhibitors may modulate both actinobacterial and host STPKs and trigger programmed death of pathogenic bacteria.

  17. Characterization of the icmH and icmF genes required for Legionella pneumophila intracellular growth, genes that are present in many bacteria associated with eukaryotic cells. (United States)

    Zusman, Tal; Feldman, Michal; Halperin, Einat; Segal, Gil


    Legionella pneumophila, the causative agent of Legionnaires' disease, replicates intracellularly within a specialized phagosome of mammalian and protozoan host cells, and the Icm/Dot type IV secretion system has been shown to be essential for this process. Unlike all the other known Icm/Dot proteins, the IcmF protein, which was described before, and the IcmH protein, which is characterized here, have homologous proteins in many bacteria (such as Yersinia pestis, Salmonella enterica, Rhizobium leguminosarum, and Vibrio cholerae), all of which associate with eukaryotic cells. Here, we have characterized the L. pneumophila icmH and icmF genes and found that both genes are present in 16 different Legionella species examined. The icmH and icmF genes were found to be absolutely required for intracellular multiplication in Acanthamoeba castellanii and partially required for intracellular growth in HL-60-derived human macrophages, for immediate cytotoxicity, and for salt sensitivity. Mutagenesis of the predicted ATP/GTP binding site of IcmF revealed that the site is partially required for intracellular growth in A. castellanii. Analysis of the regulatory region of the icmH and icmF genes, which were found to be cotranscribed, revealed that it contains at least two regulatory elements. In addition, an icmH::lacZ fusion was shown to be activated during stationary phase in a LetA- and RelA-dependent manner. Our results indicate that although the icmH and icmF genes probably have a different evolutionary origin than the rest of the icm/dot genes, they are part of the icm/dot system and are required for L. pneumophila pathogenesis.

  18. Structure of Mth11/Mth Rpp29, an essential protein subunit of archaeal and eukaryotic RNase P. (United States)

    Boomershine, William P; McElroy, Craig A; Tsai, Hsin-Yue; Wilson, Ross C; Gopalan, Venkat; Foster, Mark P


    We have determined the solution structure of Mth11 (Mth Rpp29), an essential subunit of the RNase P enzyme from the archaebacterium Methanothermobacter thermoautotrophicus (Mth). RNase P is a ubiquitous ribonucleoprotein enzyme primarily responsible for cleaving the 5' leader sequence during maturation of tRNAs in all three domains of life. In eubacteria, this enzyme is made up of two subunits: a large RNA ( approximately 120 kDa) responsible for mediating catalysis, and a small protein cofactor ( approximately 15 kDa) that modulates substrate recognition and is required for efficient in vivo catalysis. In contrast, multiple proteins are associated with eukaryotic and archaeal RNase P, and these proteins exhibit no recognizable homology to the conserved bacterial protein subunit. In reconstitution experiments with recombinantly expressed and purified protein subunits, we found that Mth Rpp29, a homolog of the Rpp29 protein subunit from eukaryotic RNase P, is an essential protein component of the archaeal holoenzyme. Consistent with its role in mediating protein-RNA interactions, we report that Mth Rpp29 is a member of the oligonucleotide/oligosaccharide binding fold family. In addition to a structured beta-barrel core, it possesses unstructured N- and C-terminal extensions bearing several highly conserved amino acid residues. To identify possible RNA contacts in the protein-RNA complex, we examined the interaction of the 11-kDa protein with the full 100-kDa Mth RNA subunit by using NMR chemical shift perturbation. Our findings represent a critical step toward a structural model of the RNase P holoenzyme from archaebacteria and higher organisms.

  19. FFPred 2.0: improved homology-independent prediction of gene ontology terms for eukaryotic protein sequences.

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    Federico Minneci

    Full Text Available To understand fully cell behaviour, biologists are making progress towards cataloguing the functional elements in the human genome and characterising their roles across a variety of tissues and conditions. Yet, functional information - either experimentally validated or computationally inferred by similarity - remains completely missing for approximately 30% of human proteins. FFPred was initially developed to bridge this gap by targeting sequences with distant or no homologues of known function and by exploiting clear patterns of intrinsic disorder associated with particular molecular activities and biological processes. Here, we present an updated and improved version, which builds on larger datasets of protein sequences and annotations, and uses updated component feature predictors as well as revised training procedures. FFPred 2.0 includes support vector regression models for the prediction of 442 Gene Ontology (GO terms, which largely expand the coverage of the ontology and of the biological process category in particular. The GO term list mainly revolves around macromolecular interactions and their role in regulatory, signalling, developmental and metabolic processes. Benchmarking experiments on newly annotated proteins show that FFPred 2.0 provides more accurate functional assignments than its predecessor and the ProtFun server do; also, its assignments can complement information obtained using BLAST-based transfer of annotations, improving especially prediction in the biological process category. Furthermore, FFPred 2.0 can be used to annotate proteins belonging to several eukaryotic organisms with a limited decrease in prediction quality. We illustrate all these points through the use of both precision-recall plots and of the COGIC scores, which we recently proposed as an alternative numerical evaluation measure of function prediction accuracy.

  20. Small RNAs with 5'-polyphosphate termini associate with a Piwi-related protein and regulate gene expression in the single-celled eukaryote Entamoeba histolytica. (United States)

    Zhang, Hanbang; Ehrenkaufer, Gretchen M; Pompey, Justine M; Hackney, Jason A; Singh, Upinder


    Small interfering RNAs regulate gene expression in diverse biological processes, including heterochromatin formation and DNA elimination, developmental regulation, and cell differentiation. In the single-celled eukaryote Entamoeba histolytica, we have identified a population of small RNAs of 27 nt size that (i) have 5'-polyphosphate termini, (ii) map antisense to genes, and (iii) associate with an E. histolytica Piwi-related protein. Whole genome microarray expression analysis revealed that essentially all genes to which antisense small RNAs map were not expressed under trophozoite conditions, the parasite stage from which the small RNAs were cloned. However, a number of these genes were expressed in other E. histolytica strains with an inverse correlation between small RNA and gene expression level, suggesting that these small RNAs mediate silencing of the cognate gene. Overall, our results demonstrate that E. histolytica has an abundant 27 nt small RNA population, with features similar to secondary siRNAs from C. elegans, and which appear to regulate gene expression. These data indicate that a silencing pathway mediated by 5'-polyphosphate siRNAs extends to single-celled eukaryotic organisms.

  1. Small RNAs with 5′-Polyphosphate Termini Associate with a Piwi-Related Protein and Regulate Gene Expression in the Single-Celled Eukaryote Entamoeba histolytica (United States)

    Zhang, Hanbang; Ehrenkaufer, Gretchen M.; Pompey, Justine M.; Hackney, Jason A.; Singh, Upinder


    Small interfering RNAs regulate gene expression in diverse biological processes, including heterochromatin formation and DNA elimination, developmental regulation, and cell differentiation. In the single-celled eukaryote Entamoeba histolytica, we have identified a population of small RNAs of 27 nt size that (i) have 5′-polyphosphate termini, (ii) map antisense to genes, and (iii) associate with an E. histolytica Piwi-related protein. Whole genome microarray expression analysis revealed that essentially all genes to which antisense small RNAs map were not expressed under trophozoite conditions, the parasite stage from which the small RNAs were cloned. However, a number of these genes were expressed in other E. histolytica strains with an inverse correlation between small RNA and gene expression level, suggesting that these small RNAs mediate silencing of the cognate gene. Overall, our results demonstrate that E. histolytica has an abundant 27 nt small RNA population, with features similar to secondary siRNAs from C. elegans, and which appear to regulate gene expression. These data indicate that a silencing pathway mediated by 5′-polyphosphate siRNAs extends to single-celled eukaryotic organisms. PMID:19043551

  2. Small RNAs with 5'-polyphosphate termini associate with a Piwi-related protein and regulate gene expression in the single-celled eukaryote Entamoeba histolytica.

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    Hanbang Zhang


    Full Text Available Small interfering RNAs regulate gene expression in diverse biological processes, including heterochromatin formation and DNA elimination, developmental regulation, and cell differentiation. In the single-celled eukaryote Entamoeba histolytica, we have identified a population of small RNAs of 27 nt size that (i have 5'-polyphosphate termini, (ii map antisense to genes, and (iii associate with an E. histolytica Piwi-related protein. Whole genome microarray expression analysis revealed that essentially all genes to which antisense small RNAs map were not expressed under trophozoite conditions, the parasite stage from which the small RNAs were cloned. However, a number of these genes were expressed in other E. histolytica strains with an inverse correlation between small RNA and gene expression level, suggesting that these small RNAs mediate silencing of the cognate gene. Overall, our results demonstrate that E. histolytica has an abundant 27 nt small RNA population, with features similar to secondary siRNAs from C. elegans, and which appear to regulate gene expression. These data indicate that a silencing pathway mediated by 5'-polyphosphate siRNAs extends to single-celled eukaryotic organisms.

  3. Comparative genomic analysis reveals a diverse repertoire of genes involved in prokaryote-eukaryote interactions within the Pseudovibrio genus.

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    Stefano eRomano


    Full Text Available Strains of the Pseudovibrio genus have been detected worldwide, mainly as part of bacterial communities associated with marine invertebrates, particularly sponges. This recurrent association has been considered as an indication of a symbiotic relationship between these microbes and their host. Until recently, the availability of only two genomes, belonging to closely related strains, has limited the knowledge on the genomic and physiological features of the genus to a single phylogenetic lineage.Here we present 10 newly sequenced genomes of Pseudovibrio strains isolated from marine sponges from the west coast of Ireland, and including the other two publicly available genomes we performed an extensive comparative genomic analysis. Homogeneity was apparent in terms of both the orthologous genes and the metabolic features shared amongst the 12 strains. At the genomic level, a key physiological difference observed amongst the isolates was the presence only in strain P. axinellae AD2 of genes encoding proteins involved in assimilatory nitrate reduction, which was then proved experimentally. We then focused on studying those systems known to be involved in the interactions with eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells. This analysis revealed that the genus harbors a large diversity of toxin-like proteins, secretion systems and their potential effectors. Their distribution in the genus was not always consistent with the phylogenetic relationship of the strains. Finally, our analyses identified new genomic islands encoding potential toxin-immunity systems, previously unknown in the genus.Our analyses shed new light on the Pseudovibrio genus, indicating a large diversity of both metabolic features and systems for interacting with the host. The diversity in both distribution and abundance of these systems amongst the strains underlines how metabolically and phylogenetically similar bacteria may use different strategies to interact with the host and find a niche

  4. Crystal Structure of a Eukaryotic GEN1 Resolving Enzyme Bound to DNA. (United States)

    Liu, Yijin; Freeman, Alasdair D J; Déclais, Anne-Cécile; Wilson, Timothy J; Gartner, Anton; Lilley, David M J


    We present the crystal structure of the junction-resolving enzyme GEN1 bound to DNA at 2.5 Å resolution. The structure of the GEN1 protein reveals it to have an elaborated FEN-XPG family fold that is modified for its role in four-way junction resolution. The functional unit in the crystal is a monomer of active GEN1 bound to the product of resolution cleavage, with an extensive DNA binding interface for both helical arms. Within the crystal lattice, a GEN1 dimer interface juxtaposes two products, whereby they can be reconnected into a four-way junction, the structure of which agrees with that determined in solution. The reconnection requires some opening of the DNA structure at the center, in agreement with permanganate probing and 2-aminopurine fluorescence. The structure shows that a relaxation of the DNA structure accompanies cleavage, suggesting how second-strand cleavage is accelerated to ensure productive resolution of the junction. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Crystal Structure of a Eukaryotic GEN1 Resolving Enzyme Bound to DNA

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    Yijin Liu


    Full Text Available We present the crystal structure of the junction-resolving enzyme GEN1 bound to DNA at 2.5 Å resolution. The structure of the GEN1 protein reveals it to have an elaborated FEN-XPG family fold that is modified for its role in four-way junction resolution. The functional unit in the crystal is a monomer of active GEN1 bound to the product of resolution cleavage, with an extensive DNA binding interface for both helical arms. Within the crystal lattice, a GEN1 dimer interface juxtaposes two products, whereby they can be reconnected into a four-way junction, the structure of which agrees with that determined in solution. The reconnection requires some opening of the DNA structure at the center, in agreement with permanganate probing and 2-aminopurine fluorescence. The structure shows that a relaxation of the DNA structure accompanies cleavage, suggesting how second-strand cleavage is accelerated to ensure productive resolution of the junction.

  6. How often do they have sex? A comparative analysis of the population structure of seven eukaryotic microbial pathogens.

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    Nicolás Tomasini

    Full Text Available The model of predominant clonal evolution (PCE proposed for micropathogens does not state that genetic exchange is totally absent, but rather, that it is too rare to break the prevalent PCE pattern. However, the actual impact of this "residual" genetic exchange should be evaluated. Multilocus Sequence Typing (MLST is an excellent tool to explore the problem. Here, we compared online available MLST datasets for seven eukaryotic microbial pathogens: Trypanosoma cruzi, the Fusarium solani complex, Aspergillus fumigatus, Blastocystis subtype 3, the Leishmania donovani complex, Candida albicans and Candida glabrata. We first analyzed phylogenetic relationships among genotypes within each dataset. Then, we examined different measures of branch support and incongruence among loci as signs of genetic structure and levels of past recombination. The analyses allow us to identify three types of genetic structure. The first was characterized by trees with well-supported branches and low levels of incongruence suggesting well-structured populations and PCE. This was the case for the T. cruzi and F. solani datasets. The second genetic structure, represented by Blastocystis spp., A. fumigatus and the L. donovani complex datasets, showed trees with weakly-supported branches but low levels of incongruence among loci, whereby genetic structuration was not clearly defined by MLST. Finally, trees showing weakly-supported branches and high levels of incongruence among loci were observed for Candida species, suggesting that genetic exchange has a higher evolutionary impact in these mainly clonal yeast species. Furthermore, simulations showed that MLST may fail to show right clustering in population datasets even in the absence of genetic exchange. In conclusion, these results make it possible to infer variable impacts of genetic exchange in populations of predominantly clonal micro-pathogens. Moreover, our results reveal different problems of MLST to determine the

  7. Design and experimental application of a novel non-degenerate universal primer set that amplifies prokaryotic 16S rRNA genes with a low possibility to amplify eukaryotic rRNA genes. (United States)

    Mori, Hiroshi; Maruyama, Fumito; Kato, Hiromi; Toyoda, Atsushi; Dozono, Ayumi; Ohtsubo, Yoshiyuki; Nagata, Yuji; Fujiyama, Asao; Tsuda, Masataka; Kurokawa, Ken


    The deep sequencing of 16S rRNA genes amplified by universal primers has revolutionized our understanding of microbial communities by allowing the characterization of the diversity of the uncultured majority. However, some universal primers also amplify eukaryotic rRNA genes, leading to a decrease in the efficiency of sequencing of prokaryotic 16S rRNA genes with possible mischaracterization of the diversity in the microbial community. In this study, we compared 16S rRNA gene sequences from genome-sequenced strains and identified candidates for non-degenerate universal primers that could be used for the amplification of prokaryotic 16S rRNA genes. The 50 identified candidates were investigated to calculate their coverage for prokaryotic and eukaryotic rRNA genes, including those from uncultured taxa and eukaryotic organelles, and a novel universal primer set, 342F-806R, covering many prokaryotic, but not eukaryotic, rRNA genes was identified. This primer set was validated by the amplification of 16S rRNA genes from a soil metagenomic sample and subsequent pyrosequencing using the Roche 454 platform. The same sample was also used for pyrosequencing of the amplicons by employing a commonly used primer set, 338F-533R, and for shotgun metagenomic sequencing using the Illumina platform. Our comparison of the taxonomic compositions inferred by the three sequencing experiments indicated that the non-degenerate 342F-806R primer set can characterize the taxonomic composition of the microbial community without substantial bias, and is highly expected to be applicable to the analysis of a wide variety of microbial communities.

  8. An extended phylogenetic analysis reveals ancient origin of "non-green" phosphoribulokinase genes from two lineages of "green" secondary photosynthetic eukaryotes: Euglenophyta and Chlorarachniophyta

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    Sekimoto Hiroyuki


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Euglenophyta and Chlorarachniophyta are groups of photosynthetic eukaryotes harboring secondary plastids of distinct green algal origins. Although previous phylogenetic analyses of genes encoding Calvin cycle enzymes demonstrated the presence of genes apparently not derived from green algal endosymbionts in the nuclear genomes of Euglena gracilis (Euglenophyta and Bigelowiella natans (Chlorarachniophyta, the origins of these "non-green" genes in "green" secondary phototrophs were unclear due to the limited taxon sampling. Results Here, we sequenced five new phosphoribulokinase (PRK genes (from one euglenophyte, two chlorarachniophytes, and two glaucophytes and performed an extended phylogenetic analysis of the genes based on a phylum-wide taxon sampling from various photosynthetic eukaryotes. Our phylogenetic analyses demonstrated that the PRK sequences form two genera of Euglenophyta formed a robust monophyletic group within a large clade including stramenopiles, haptophytes and a cryptophyte, and three genera of Chlorarachniophyta were placed within the red algal clade. These "non-green" affiliations were supported by the taxon-specific insertion/deletion sequences in the PRK alignment, especially between euglenophytes and stramenopiles. In addition, phylogenetic analysis of another Calvin cycle enzyme, plastid-targeted sedoheptulose-bisphosphatase (SBP, showed that the SBP sequences from two genera of Chlorarachniophyta were positioned within a red algal clade. Conclusions Our results suggest that PRK genes may have been transferred from a "stramenopile" ancestor to Euglenophyta and from a "red algal" ancestor to Chlorarachniophyta before radiation of extant taxa of these two "green" secondary phototrophs. The presence of two of key Calvin cycle enzymes, PRK and SBP, of red algal origins in Chlorarachniophyta indicate that the contribution of "non-green" algae to the plastid proteome in the "green" secondary phototrophs is

  9. Worldwide genetic structure in 37 genes important in telomere biology (United States)

    Mirabello, L; Yeager, M; Chowdhury, S; Qi, L; Deng, X; Wang, Z; Hutchinson, A; Savage, S A


    Telomeres form the ends of eukaryotic chromosomes and are vital in maintaining genetic integrity. Telomere dysfunction is associated with cancer and several chronic diseases. Patterns of genetic variation across individuals can provide keys to further understanding the evolutionary history of genes. We investigated patterns of differentiation and population structure of 37 telomere maintenance genes among 53 worldwide populations. Data from 898 unrelated individuals were obtained from the genome-wide scan of the Human Genome Diversity Panel (HGDP) and from 270 unrelated individuals from the International HapMap Project at 716 single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) loci. We additionally compared this gene set to HGDP data at 1396 SNPs in 174 innate immunity genes. The majority of the telomere biology genes had low to moderate haplotype diversity (45–85%), high ancestral allele frequencies (>60%) and low differentiation (FST HapMap 3. TERT had higher than expected levels of haplotype diversity, likely attributable to a lack of linkage disequilibrium, and a potential cancer-associated SNP in this gene, rs2736100, varied substantially in genotype frequency across major continental regions. It is possible that the genes under selection could influence telomere biology diseases. As a group, there appears to be less diversity and differentiation in telomere biology genes than in genes with different functions, possibly due to their critical role in telomere maintenance and chromosomal stability. PMID:21731055

  10. [Methylation of adenine residues in DNA of eukaryotes]. (United States)

    Baniushin, B F


    Like in bacteria, DNA in these organisms is subjected to enzymatic modification (methylation) both at adenine and cytosine residues. There is an indirect evidence that adenine DNA methylation takes place also in animals. In plants m6A was detected in total, mitochondrial and nuclear DNAs; in plants one and the same gene (DRM2) can be methylated both at adenine and cytosine residues. ORF homologous to bacterial adenine DNA-methyltransferases are present in nuclear DNA of protozoa, yeasts, insects, nematodes, higher plants, vertebrates and other eukaryotes. Thus, adenine DNA-methyltransferases can be found in the various evolutionary distant eukaryotes. First N6-adenine DNA-methyltransferase (wadmtase) of higher eukaryotes was isolated from vacuolar fraction of vesicles obtained from aging wheat coleoptiles; in the presence of S-adenosyl-L-methionine this Mg2+ -, Ca2+ -dependent enzyme de novo methylates first adenine residue in TGATCA sequence in single- and double-stranded DNA but it prefers single-stranded DNA structures. Adenine DNA methylation in eukaryotes seems to be involved in regulation of both gene expression and DNA replication including replication of mitochondrial DNA. It can control persistence of foreign DNA in a cell and seems to be an element of R-M system in plants. Thus, in eukaryotic cell there are, at least, two different systems of the enzymatic DNA methylations (adenine and cytosine ones) and a special type of regulation of gene functioning based on the combinatory hierarchy of these interdependent genome modifications.

  11. Structure of eukaryotic CMG helicase at a replication fork and implications to replisome architecture and origin initiation. (United States)

    Georgescu, Roxana; Yuan, Zuanning; Bai, Lin; de Luna Almeida Santos, Ruda; Sun, Jingchuan; Zhang, Dan; Yurieva, Olga; Li, Huilin; O'Donnell, Michael E


    The eukaryotic CMG (Cdc45, Mcm2-7, GINS) helicase consists of the Mcm2-7 hexameric ring along with five accessory factors. The Mcm2-7 heterohexamer, like other hexameric helicases, is shaped like a ring with two tiers, an N-tier ring composed of the N-terminal domains, and a C-tier of C-terminal domains; the C-tier contains the motor. In principle, either tier could translocate ahead of the other during movement on DNA. We have used cryo-EM single-particle 3D reconstruction to solve the structure of CMG in complex with a DNA fork. The duplex stem penetrates into the central channel of the N-tier and the unwound leading single-strand DNA traverses the channel through the N-tier into the C-tier motor, 5'-3' through CMG. Therefore, the N-tier ring is pushed ahead by the C-tier ring during CMG translocation, opposite the currently accepted polarity. The polarity of the N-tier ahead of the C-tier places the leading Pol ε below CMG and Pol α-primase at the top of CMG at the replication fork. Surprisingly, the new N-tier to C-tier polarity of translocation reveals an unforeseen quality-control mechanism at the origin. Thus, upon assembly of head-to-head CMGs that encircle double-stranded DNA at the origin, the two CMGs must pass one another to leave the origin and both must remodel onto opposite strands of single-stranded DNA to do so. We propose that head-to-head motors may generate energy that underlies initial melting at the origin.

  12. Toxoplasma gondii gene expression is under the control of regulatory pathways acting through chromatin structure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bougdour A.


    Full Text Available The activity state of a gene is determined by a complex regulatory network of co-acting factors affecting the structure of the chromatin into which the gene is embedded. While significant changes of the transcriptome occur during cell differentiation in apicomplexan parasites, basic mechanisms controlling gene expression are still unknown. Recent studies support and expand the concept of the chromatin environment being key factor for the control of transcriptional activity in these lower eukaryotes organisms. Here, we review recent advances in the field of epigenetic gene regulation in Toxoplasma gondii, the model apicomplexan.

  13. Arabinogalactan proteins have deep roots in eukaryotes: identification of genes and epitopes in brown algae and their role in Fucus serratus embryo development. (United States)

    Hervé, Cécile; Siméon, Amandine; Jam, Murielle; Cassin, Andrew; Johnson, Kim L; Salmeán, Armando A; Willats, William G T; Doblin, Monika S; Bacic, Antony; Kloareg, Bernard


    Arabinogalactan proteins (AGPs) are highly glycosylated, hydroxyproline-rich proteins found at the cell surface of plants, where they play key roles in developmental processes. Brown algae are marine, multicellular, photosynthetic eukaryotes. They belong to the phylum Stramenopiles, which is unrelated to land plants and green algae (Chloroplastida). Brown algae share common evolutionary features with other multicellular organisms, including a carbohydrate-rich cell wall. They differ markedly from plants in their cell wall composition, and AGPs have not been reported in brown algae. Here we investigated the presence of chimeric AGP-like core proteins in this lineage. We report that the genome sequence of the brown algal model Ectocarpus siliculosus encodes AGP protein backbone motifs, in a gene context that differs considerably from what is known in land plants. We showed the occurrence of AGP glycan epitopes in a range of brown algal cell wall extracts. We demonstrated that these chimeric AGP-like core proteins are developmentally regulated in embryos of the order Fucales and showed that AGP loss of function seriously impairs the course of early embryogenesis. Our findings shine a new light on the role of AGPs in cell wall sensing and raise questions about the origin and evolution of AGPs in eukaryotes. © 2015 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2015 New Phytologist Trust.

  14. Construction of eukaryotic expression vectors encoding CFP-10 and ESAT-6 genes and their potential in lymphocyte proliferation. (United States)

    Torabi, Azam; Tahmoorespour, Mojtaba; Vahedi, Fatemeh; Mosavari, Nader; Nassiri, Mohammadreza


    Mycobacterium (M.) bovis is the agent of bovine tuberculosis (TB) in a range of animal species, including humans. Recent advances in immunology and the molecular biology of Mycobacterium have allowed identification of a large number of antigens with the potential for the development of a new TB vaccine. The ESAT-6 and CFP-10 proteins of M. bovis are important structural and functional proteins known to be important immunogens. In the current study, the DNAs encoding these genes were utilized in the construction of pcDNA 3.1+/ESAT-6 and pcDNA3.1+/CFP-10 plasmids. After intramuscular injection of BALB/c mice with these plasmids, ESAT-6 and CFP-10 mRNA expression was assessed by RT-PCR. Mice were inoculated and boosted with the plasmids to evaluate their effects on lymphocyte proliferation. Our results indicate the plasmids are expressed at the RNA level and can induce lymphocyte proliferation. Further study is needed to characterize the effect of these antigens on the immune system and determine whether they are effective vaccine candidates against M. bovis.

  15. Evolution of DNA replication protein complexes in eukaryotes and Archaea.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicholas Chia

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The replication of DNA in Archaea and eukaryotes requires several ancillary complexes, including proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA, replication factor C (RFC, and the minichromosome maintenance (MCM complex. Bacterial DNA replication utilizes comparable proteins, but these are distantly related phylogenetically to their archaeal and eukaryotic counterparts at best. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: While the structures of each of the complexes do not differ significantly between the archaeal and eukaryotic versions thereof, the evolutionary dynamic in the two cases does. The number of subunits in each complex is constant across all taxa. However, they vary subtly with regard to composition. In some taxa the subunits are all identical in sequence, while in others some are homologous rather than identical. In the case of eukaryotes, there is no phylogenetic variation in the makeup of each complex-all appear to derive from a common eukaryotic ancestor. This is not the case in Archaea, where the relationship between the subunits within each complex varies taxon-to-taxon. We have performed a detailed phylogenetic analysis of these relationships in order to better understand the gene duplications and divergences that gave rise to the homologous subunits in Archaea. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: This domain level difference in evolution suggests that different forces have driven the evolution of DNA replication proteins in each of these two domains. In addition, the phylogenies of all three gene families support the distinctiveness of the proposed archaeal phylum Thaumarchaeota.

  16. Structural Molecular Components of Septate Junctions in Cnidarians Point to the Origin of Epithelial Junctions in Eukaryotes

    KAUST Repository

    Ganot, P.


    Septate junctions (SJs) insure barrier properties and control paracellular diffusion of solutes across epithelia in invertebrates. However, the origin and evolution of their molecular constituents in Metazoa have not been firmly established. Here, we investigated the genomes of early branching metazoan representatives to reconstruct the phylogeny of the molecular components of SJs. Although Claudins and SJ cytoplasmic adaptor components appeared successively throughout metazoan evolution, the structural components of SJs arose at the time of Placozoa/Cnidaria/Bilateria radiation. We also show that in the scleractinian coral Stylophora pistillata, the structural SJ component Neurexin IV colocalizes with the cortical actin network at the apical border of the cells, at the place of SJs. We propose a model for SJ components in Cnidaria. Moreover, our study reveals an unanticipated diversity of SJ structural component variants in cnidarians. This diversity correlates with gene-specific expression in calcifying and noncalcifying tissues, suggesting specific paracellular pathways across the cell layers of these diploblastic animals.

  17. Is There any Alternative to Canonical DNA Barcoding of Multicellular Eukaryotic Species? A Case for the Tubulin Gene Family. (United States)

    Breviario, Diego


    Modern taxonomy is largely relying on DNA barcoding, a nucleotide sequence-based approach that provides automated species identification using short orthologous DNA regions, mainly of organellar origin when applied to multicellular Eukaryotic species. Target DNA loci have been selected that contain a minimal amount of nucleotide sequence variation within species while diverging among species. This strategy is quite effective for the identification of vertebrates and other animal lineages but poses a problem in plants where different combinations of two or three loci are constantly used. Even so, species discrimination in such plant categories as ornamentals and herbals remain problematic as well as the confident identification of subspecies, ecotypes, and closely related or recently evolved species. All these limitations may be successfully solved by the application of a different strategy, based on the use of a multi-locus, ubiquitous, nuclear marker, that is tubulin. In fact, the tubulin-based polymorphism method can release specific genomic profiles to any plant species independently from its taxonomic group. This offers the rare possibility of an effective yet generic genomic fingerprint. In a more general context, the issue is raised about the possibility that approaches alternative to systematic DNA sequencing may still provide useful and simple solutions.

  18. WebScipio: An online tool for the determination of gene structures using protein sequences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Waack Stephan


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Obtaining the gene structure for a given protein encoding gene is an important step in many analyses. A software suited for this task should be readily accessible, accurate, easy to handle and should provide the user with a coherent representation of the most probable gene structure. It should be rigorous enough to optimise features on the level of single bases and at the same time flexible enough to allow for cross-species searches. Results WebScipio, a web interface to the Scipio software, allows a user to obtain the corresponding coding sequence structure of a here given a query protein sequence that belongs to an already assembled eukaryotic genome. The resulting gene structure is presented in various human readable formats like a schematic representation, and a detailed alignment of the query and the target sequence highlighting any discrepancies. WebScipio can also be used to identify and characterise the gene structures of homologs in related organisms. In addition, it offers a web service for integration with other programs. Conclusion WebScipio is a tool that allows users to get a high-quality gene structure prediction from a protein query. It offers more than 250 eukaryotic genomes that can be searched and produces predictions that are close to what can be achieved by manual annotation, for in-species and cross-species searches alike. WebScipio is freely accessible at

  19. Why eukaryotic cells use introns to enhance gene expression: Splicing reduces transcription-associated mutagenesis by inhibiting topoisomerase I cutting activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yang Yu-Fei


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The costs and benefits of spliceosomal introns in eukaryotes have not been established. One recognized effect of intron splicing is its known enhancement of gene expression. However, the mechanism regulating such splicing-mediated expression enhancement has not been defined. Previous studies have shown that intron splicing is a time-consuming process, indicating that splicing may not reduce the time required for transcription and processing of spliced pre-mRNA molecules; rather, it might facilitate the later rounds of transcription. Because the densities of active RNA polymerase II on most genes are less than one molecule per gene, direct interactions between the splicing apparatus and transcriptional complexes (from the later rounds of transcription are infrequent, and thus unlikely to account for splicing-mediated gene expression enhancement. Presentation of the hypothesis The serine/arginine-rich protein SF2/ASF can inhibit the DNA topoisomerase I activity that removes negative supercoiling of DNA generated by transcription. Consequently, splicing could make genes more receptive to RNA polymerase II during the later rounds of transcription, and thus affect the frequency of gene transcription. Compared with the transcriptional enhancement mediated by strong promoters, intron-containing genes experience a lower frequency of cut-and-paste processes. The cleavage and religation activity of DNA strands by DNA topoisomerase I was recently shown to account for transcription-associated mutagenesis. Therefore, intron-mediated enhancement of gene expression could reduce transcription-associated genome instability. Testing the hypothesis Experimentally test whether transcription-associated mutagenesis is lower in intron-containing genes than in intronless genes. Use bioinformatic analysis to check whether exons flanking lost introns have higher frequencies of short deletions. Implications of the hypothesis The mechanism of intron

  20. RNase MRP and the RNA processing cascade in the eukaryotic ancestor. (United States)

    Woodhams, Michael D; Stadler, Peter F; Penny, David; Collins, Lesley J


    Within eukaryotes there is a complex cascade of RNA-based macromolecules that process other RNA molecules, especially mRNA, tRNA and rRNA. An example is RNase MRP processing ribosomal RNA (rRNA) in ribosome biogenesis. One hypothesis is that this complexity was present early in eukaryotic evolution; an alternative is that an initial simpler network later gained complexity by gene duplication in lineages that led to animals, fungi and plants. Recently there has been a rapid increase in support for the complexity-early theory because the vast majority of these RNA-processing reactions are found throughout eukaryotes, and thus were likely to be present in the last common ancestor of living eukaryotes, herein called the Eukaryotic Ancestor. We present an overview of the RNA processing cascade in the Eukaryotic Ancestor and investigate in particular, RNase MRP which was previously thought to have evolved later in eukaryotes due to its apparent limited distribution in fungi and animals and plants. Recent publications, as well as our own genomic searches, find previously unknown RNase MRP RNAs, indicating that RNase MRP has a wide distribution in eukaryotes. Combining secondary structure and promoter region analysis of RNAs for RNase MRP, along with analysis of the target substrate (rRNA), allows us to discuss this distribution in the light of eukaryotic evolution. We conclude that RNase MRP can now be placed in the RNA-processing cascade of the Eukaryotic Ancestor, highlighting the complexity of RNA-processing in early eukaryotes. Promoter analyses of MRP-RNA suggest that regulation of the critical processes of rRNA cleavage can vary, showing that even these key cellular processes (for which we expect high conservation) show some species-specific variability. We present our consensus MRP-RNA secondary structure as a useful model for further searches.

  1. Analysis of ribosomal protein gene structures: implications for intron evolution.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)


    Full Text Available Many spliceosomal introns exist in the eukaryotic nuclear genome. Despite much research, the evolution of spliceosomal introns remains poorly understood. In this paper, we tried to gain insights into intron evolution from a novel perspective by comparing the gene structures of cytoplasmic ribosomal proteins (CRPs and mitochondrial ribosomal proteins (MRPs, which are held to be of archaeal and bacterial origin, respectively. We analyzed 25 homologous pairs of CRP and MRP genes that together had a total of 527 intron positions. We found that all 12 of the intron positions shared by CRP and MRP genes resulted from parallel intron gains and none could be considered to be "conserved," i.e., descendants of the same ancestor. This was supported further by the high frequency of proto-splice sites at these shared positions; proto-splice sites are proposed to be sites for intron insertion. Although we could not definitively disprove that spliceosomal introns were already present in the last universal common ancestor, our results lend more support to the idea that introns were gained late. At least, our results show that MRP genes were intronless at the time of endosymbiosis. The parallel intron gains between CRP and MRP genes accounted for 2.3% of total intron positions, which should provide a reliable estimate for future inferences of intron evolution.

  2. Eukaryotic transcription factors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Staby, Lasse; O'Shea, Charlotte; Willemoës, Martin


    Gene-specific transcription factors (TFs) are key regulatory components of signaling pathways, controlling, for example, cell growth, development, and stress responses. Their biological functions are determined by their molecular structures, as exemplified by their structured DNA-binding domains...

  3. Conservation of functional domain structure in bicarbonate-regulated “soluble” adenylyl cyclases in bacteria and eukaryotes (United States)

    Kobayashi, Mime; Buck, Jochen; Levin, Lonny R.


    Soluble adenylyl cyclase (sAC) is an evolutionarily conserved bicarbonate sensor. In mammals, it is responsible for bicarbonate-induced, cAMP-dependent processes in sperm required for fertilization and postulated to be involved in other bicarbonate- and carbon dioxide-dependent functions throughout the body. Among eukaryotes, sAC-like cyclases have been detected in mammals and in the fungi Dictyostelium; these enzymes display extensive similarity extending through two cyclase catalytic domains and a long carboxy terminal extension. sAC-like cyclases are also found in a number of bacterial phyla (Cyanobacteria, Actinobacteria, and Proteobacteria), but these enzymes generally possess only a single catalytic domain and little, if any, homology with the remainder of the mammalian protein. Database mining through a number of recently sequenced genomes identified sAC orthologues in additional metazoan phyla (Arthropoda and Chordata) and additional bacterial phyla (Chloroflexi). Interestingly, the Chloroflexi sAC-like cyclases, a family of three enzymes from the thermophilic eubacterium, Chloroflexus aurantiacus, are more similar to eukaryotic sAC-like cyclases (i.e., mammalian sAC and Dictyostelium SgcA) than they are to other bacterial adenylyl cyclases (ACs) (i.e., from Cyanobacteria). The Chloroflexus sAC-like cyclases each possess two cyclase catalytic domains and extensive similarity with mammalian enzymes through their carboxy termini. We cloned one of the Chloroflexus sAC-like cyclases and confirmed it to be stimulated by bicarbonate. These data extend the family of organisms possessing bicarbonate-responsive ACs to numerous phyla within the bacterial and eukaryotic kingdoms. PMID:15322879

  4. Horizontal transfer of bacterial polyphosphate kinases to eukaryotes: implications for the ice age and land colonisation. (United States)

    Whitehead, Michael P; Hooley, Paul; W Brown, Michael R


    Studies of online database(s) showed that convincing examples of eukaryote PPKs derived from bacteria type PPK1 and PPK2 enzymes are rare and currently confined to a few simple eukaryotes. These enzymes probably represent several separate horizontal transfer events. Retention of such sequences may be an advantage for tolerance to stresses such as desiccation or nutrient depletion for simple eukaryotes that lack more sophisticated adaptations available to multicellular organisms. We propose that the acquisition of encoding sequences for these enzymes by horizontal transfer enhanced the ability of early plants to colonise the land. The improved ability to sequester and release inorganic phosphate for carbon fixation by photosynthetic algae in the ocean may have accelerated or even triggered global glaciation events. There is some evidence for DNA sequences encoding PPKs in a wider range of eukaryotes, notably some invertebrates, though it is unclear that these represent functional genes.Polyphosphate (poly P) is found in all cells, carrying out a wide range of essential roles. Studied mainly in prokaryotes, the enzymes responsible for synthesis of poly P in eukaryotes (polyphosphate kinases PPKs) are not well understood. The best characterised enzyme from bacteria known to catalyse the formation of high molecular weight polyphosphate from ATP is PPK1 which shows some structural similarity to phospholipase D. A second bacterial PPK (PPK2) resembles thymidylate kinase. Recent reports have suggested a widespread distribution of these bacteria type enzymes in eukaryotes. On - line databases show evidence for the presence of genes encoding PPK1 in only a limited number of eukaryotes. These include the photosynthetic eukaryotes Ostreococcus tauri, O. lucimarinus, Porphyra yezoensis, Cyanidioschyzon merolae and the moss Physcomitrella patens, as well as the amoeboid symbiont Capsaspora owczarzaki and the non-photosynthetic eukaryotes Dictyostelium (3 species

  5. CpLEA5, the Late Embryogenesis Abundant Protein Gene from Chimonanthus praecox, Possesses Low Temperature and Osmotic Resistances in Prokaryote and Eukaryotes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yiling Liu


    Full Text Available Plants synthesize and accumulate a series of stress-resistance proteins to protect normal physiological activities under adverse conditions. Chimonanthus praecox which blooms in freezing weather accumulates late embryogenesis abundant proteins (LEAs in flowers, but C. praecox LEAs are little reported. Here, we report a group of five LEA genes of C. praecox (CpLEA5, KT727031. Prokaryotic-expressed CpLEA5 was employed in Escherichia coli to investigate bioactivities and membrane permeability at low-temperature. In comparison with the vacant strains, CpLEA5-containing strains survived in a 20% higher rate; and the degree of cell membrane damage in CpLEA5-containing strains was 55% of that of the vacant strains according to a conductivity test, revealing the low-temperature resistance of CpLEA5 in bacteria. CpLEA5 was also expressed in Pichia pastoris. Interestingly, besides low-temperature resistance, CpLEA5 conferred high resistance to salt and alkali in CpLEA5 overexpressing yeast. The CpLEA5 gene was transferred into Arabidopsis thaliana to also demonstrate CpLEA5 actions in plants. As expected, the transgenic lines were more resistant against low-temperature and drought while compared with the wild type. Taken together, CpLEA5-conferred resistances to several conditions in prokaryote and eukaryotes could have great value as a genetic technology to enhance osmotic stress and low-temperature tolerance.

  6. The cryptomonad histone H4-encoding gene: structure and chromosomal localization. (United States)

    Müller, S B; Rensing, S A; Maier, U G


    Cryptomonads are unicellular flagellates whose plastids are surrounded by four membranes. A periplastidal compartment, containing eukaryote-type ribosomes, starch grains and a so-called nucleomorph, is located between the inner and outer membrane pairs. The nucleomorph has been shown to be the vestigial nucleus of a eukaryotic endosymbiont. In order to obtain more information about the chromatin structure of the nucleomorph and the host nuclear chromosomes, we studied the distribution of the histone, H4. H4 was not detectable in the nucleomorph by immunolocalization, thus supporting earlier findings by Gibbs [In: Wiesner et al. (Eds.), Experimental Phycology 1, 1990, pp. 145-157]. Likewise, no H4 DNA was demonstrable in the nucleomorph by Southern hybridization. Sequence analysis, and Southern and Northern blot data of a cryptomonad gene, H4, indicate an intermediate position for these genes between animals and plants.

  7. Structure of the murine Thy-1 gene

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    V. Giguere; K-I. Isobe; F.G. Grosveld (Frank)


    textabstractWe have cloned the murine Thy-1.1 (AKR) and Thy-1.2 (Balb/c) genes. The complete exon/intron structure and the nucleotide sequence of the Thy-1.2 gene was determined. The gene contains four exons and three intervening sequences. The complete transcriptional unit gives rise to a tissue

  8. Eukaryotic DNA Replicases

    KAUST Repository

    Zaher, Manal S.


    The current model of the eukaryotic DNA replication fork includes three replicative DNA polymerases, polymerase α/primase complex (Pol α), polymerase δ (Pol δ), and polymerase ε (Pol ε). The primase synthesizes 8–12 nucleotide RNA primers that are extended by the DNA polymerization activity of Pol α into 30–35 nucleotide RNA-DNA primers. Replication factor C (RFC) opens the polymerase clamp-like processivity factor, proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA), and loads it onto the primer-template. Pol δ utilizes PCNA to mediate highly processive DNA synthesis, while Pol ε has intrinsic high processivity that is modestly stimulated by PCNA. Pol ε replicates the leading strand and Pol δ replicates the lagging strand in a division of labor that is not strict. The three polymerases are comprised of multiple subunits and share unifying features in their large catalytic and B subunits. The remaining subunits are evolutionarily not related and perform diverse functions. The catalytic subunits are members of family B, which are distinguished by their larger sizes due to inserts in their N- and C-terminal regions. The sizes of these inserts vary among the three polymerases, and their functions remain largely unknown. Strikingly, the quaternary structures of Pol α, Pol δ, and Pol ε are arranged similarly. The catalytic subunits adopt a globular structure that is linked via its conserved C-terminal region to the B subunit. The remaining subunits are linked to the catalytic and B subunits in a highly flexible manner.

  9. Gene Composer in a structural genomics environment. (United States)

    Lorimer, Don; Raymond, Amy; Mixon, Mark; Burgin, Alex; Staker, Bart; Stewart, Lance


    The structural genomics effort at the Seattle Structural Genomics Center for Infectious Disease (SSGCID) requires the manipulation of large numbers of amino-acid sequences and the underlying DNA sequences which are to be cloned into expression vectors. To improve efficiency in high-throughput protein structure determination, a database software package, Gene Composer, has been developed which facilitates the information-rich design of protein constructs and their underlying gene sequences. With its modular workflow design and numerous graphical user interfaces, Gene Composer enables researchers to perform all common bioinformatics steps used in modern structure-guided protein engineering and synthetic gene engineering. An example of the structure determination of H1N1 RNA-dependent RNA polymerase PB2 subunit is given.

  10. A Structural Hinge in Eukaryotic MutY Homologues Mediates Catalytic Activity and Rad9-Rad1-Hus1 Checkpoint Complex Interactions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    P Luncsford; D Chang; G Shi; J Bernstein; A Madabushi; D Patterson; A Lu; E Toth


    The DNA glycosylase MutY homologue (MYH or MUTYH) removes adenines misincorporated opposite 8-oxoguanine as part of the base excision repair pathway. Importantly, defects in human MYH (hMYH) activity cause the inherited colorectal cancer syndrome MYH-associated polyposis. A key feature of MYH activity is its coordination with cell cycle checkpoint via interaction with the Rad9-Rad1-Hus1 (9-1-1) complex. The 9-1-1 complex facilitates cell cycle checkpoint activity and coordinates this activity with ongoing DNA repair. The interdomain connector (IDC, residues 295-350) between the catalytic domain and the 8-oxoguanine recognition domain of hMYH is a critical element that maintains interactions with the 9-1-1 complex. We report the first crystal structure of a eukaryotic MutY protein, a fragment of hMYH (residues 65-350) that consists of the catalytic domain and the IDC. Our structure reveals that the IDC adopts a stabilized conformation projecting away from the catalytic domain to form a docking scaffold for 9-1-1. We further examined the role of the IDC using Schizosaccharomyces pombe MYH as model system. In vitro studies of S. pombe MYH identified residues I261 and E262 of the IDC (equivalent to V315 and E316 of the hMYH IDC) as critical for maintaining the MYH/9-1-1 interaction. We determined that the eukaryotic IDC is also required for DNA damage selection and robust enzymatic activity. Our studies also provide the first evidence that disruption of the MYH/9-1-1 interaction diminishes the repair of oxidative DNA damage in vivo. Thus, preserving the MYH/9-1-1 interaction contributes significantly to minimizing the mutagenic potential of oxidative DNA damage.

  11. [Cloning and structure analysis of zinc finger protein gene in Populus euphratica Oliv]. (United States)

    Wang, Jun-Ying; Yin, Wei-Lun; Xia, Xin-Li


    Zinc finger proteins belong to a family of nuclear transcription factors which function is to regulate gene expression in both prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. A pair of primers was designed after analyzing the conservation of salt-tolerant zinc protein Alfin-1 in such diverse plants as alfalfa and Arabidopsis. The zinc finger protein gene is isolated from total RNA with RT-PCR in aquaculture leaves of Populus euphratica . Its full cDNA length is 924bp. Analysis of its amino acid sequence showed it has a typical Cys(2)/His(2) zinc finger structure and a G-rich promoter binding site GTGGGG, starting from position 556. Since transcrptional factors which have the same function show conservation in structure and amino acid sequence of DNA binding region, the structure analysis in this paper indicates the cloned zinc finger protein gene may have functional correlation to Alfin-1.

  12. Autophagy in unicellular eukaryotes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kiel, J.A.K.W.


    Cells need a constant supply of precursors to enable the production of macromolecules to sustain growth and survival. Unlike metazoans, unicellular eukaryotes depend exclusively on the extracellular medium for this supply. When environmental nutrients become depleted, existing cytoplasmic components

  13. Myxoma Virus Immunomodulatory Protein M156R is a Structural Mimic of Eukaryotic Translation Initiation Factor eIF2 alpha

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ramelot, Theresa A.; Cort, John R.; Yee, Adelinda; Liu, Furong; Goshe, Michael B.; Edwards, Aled M.; Smith, Richard D.; Arrowsmith, Cheryl H.; Dever, Thomas E.; Kennedy, Michael A.


    M156R, the product of the myxoma virus M156R open reading frame, is a protein of unknown function. However, several homologs of M156R from other viruses are immunomodulatory proteins that bind to interferon-induced protein kinase PKR and inhibit phosphorylation of the eukaryotic translation initiation factor eIF2a. In this study, we have determined the nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) structure of M156R, the first structure of a myxoma virus protein. The fold consists of a five-stranded antiparallel b-barrel with two of the strands connected by a long loop and a short a-helix. The similarity between M156R and the predicted S1 motif structure of eIF2a suggests that the viral homologs are pseudosubstrate inhibitors of PKR that mimic eIF2a in order to compete for binding to PKR. A homology modeled structure of the well studied vaccinia virus K3L was generated based on alignment with M156R. Residues important for binding to PKR are conserved residues on the surface of the b-barrel and in the mobile loop, identifying the putative PKR recognition motif.

  14. From the Cover: Genome analysis of the smallest free-living eukaryote Ostreococcus tauri unveils many unique features (United States)

    Derelle, Evelyne; Ferraz, Conchita; Rombauts, Stephane; Rouzé, Pierre; Worden, Alexandra Z.; Robbens, Steven; Partensky, Frédéric; Degroeve, Sven; Echeynié, Sophie; Cooke, Richard; Saeys, Yvan; Wuyts, Jan; Jabbari, Kamel; Bowler, Chris; Panaud, Olivier; Piégu, Benoît; Ball, Steven G.; Ral, Jean-Philippe; Bouget, François-Yves; Piganeau, Gwenael; de Baets, Bernard; Picard, André; Delseny, Michel; Demaille, Jacques; van de Peer, Yves; Moreau, Hervé


    The green lineage is reportedly 1,500 million years old, evolving shortly after the endosymbiosis event that gave rise to early photosynthetic eukaryotes. In this study, we unveil the complete genome sequence of an ancient member of this lineage, the unicellular green alga Ostreococcus tauri (Prasinophyceae). This cosmopolitan marine primary producer is the world's smallest free-living eukaryote known to date. Features likely reflecting optimization of environmentally relevant pathways, including resource acquisition, unusual photosynthesis apparatus, and genes potentially involved in C4 photosynthesis, were observed, as was downsizing of many gene families. Overall, the 12.56-Mb nuclear genome has an extremely high gene density, in part because of extensive reduction of intergenic regions and other forms of compaction such as gene fusion. However, the genome is structurally complex. It exhibits previously unobserved levels of heterogeneity for a eukaryote. Two chromosomes differ structurally from the other eighteen. Both have a significantly biased G+C content, and, remarkably, they contain the majority of transposable elements. Many chromosome 2 genes also have unique codon usage and splicing, but phylogenetic analysis and composition do not support alien gene origin. In contrast, most chromosome 19 genes show no similarity to green lineage genes and a large number of them are specialized in cell surface processes. Taken together, the complete genome sequence, unusual features, and downsized gene families, make O. tauri an ideal model system for research on eukaryotic genome evolution, including chromosome specialization and green lineage ancestry. genome heterogeneity | genome sequence | green alga | Prasinophyceae | gene prediction

  15. The Genome of Naegleria gruberi Illuminates Early Eukaryotic Versatility

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    Fritz-Laylin, Lillian K.; Prochnik, Simon E.; Ginger, Michael L.; Dacks, Joel; Carpenter, Meredith L.; Field, Mark C.; Kuo, Alan; Paredez, Alex; Chapman, Jarrod; Pham, Jonathan; Shu, Shengqiang; Neupane, Rochak; Cipriano, Michael; Mancuso, Joel; Tu, Hank; Salamov, Asaf; Lindquist, Erika; Shapiro, Harris; Lucas, Susan; Grigoriev, Igor V.; Cande, W. Zacheus; Fulton, Chandler; Rokhsar, Daniel S.; Dawson, Scott C.


    Genome sequences of diverse free-living protists are essential for understanding eukaryotic evolution and molecular and cell biology. The free-living amoeboflagellate Naegleria gruberi belongs to a varied and ubiquitous protist clade (Heterolobosea) that diverged from other eukaryotic lineages over a billion years ago. Analysis of the 15,727 protein-coding genes encoded by Naegleria's 41 Mb nuclear genome indicates a capacity for both aerobic respiration and anaerobic metabolism with concomitant hydrogen production, with fundamental implications for the evolution of organelle metabolism. The Naegleria genome facilitates substantially broader phylogenomic comparisons of free-living eukaryotes than previously possible, allowing us to identify thousands of genes likely present in the pan-eukaryotic ancestor, with 40% likely eukaryotic inventions. Moreover, we construct a comprehensive catalog of amoeboid-motility genes. The Naegleria genome, analyzed in the context of other protists, reveals a remarkably complex ancestral eukaryote with a rich repertoire of cytoskeletal, sexual, signaling, and metabolic modules.

  16. MicroRNAs Form Triplexes with Double Stranded DNA at Sequence-Specific Binding Sites; a Eukaryotic Mechanism via which microRNAs Could Directly Alter Gene Expression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven W Paugh


    Full Text Available MicroRNAs are important regulators of gene expression, acting primarily by binding to sequence-specific locations on already transcribed messenger RNAs (mRNA and typically down-regulating their stability or translation. Recent studies indicate that microRNAs may also play a role in up-regulating mRNA transcription levels, although a definitive mechanism has not been established. Double-helical DNA is capable of forming triple-helical structures through Hoogsteen and reverse Hoogsteen interactions in the major groove of the duplex, and we show physical evidence (i.e., NMR, FRET, SPR that purine or pyrimidine-rich microRNAs of appropriate length and sequence form triple-helical structures with purine-rich sequences of duplex DNA, and identify microRNA sequences that favor triplex formation. We developed an algorithm (Trident to search genome-wide for potential triplex-forming sites and show that several mammalian and non-mammalian genomes are enriched for strong microRNA triplex binding sites. We show that those genes containing sequences favoring microRNA triplex formation are markedly enriched (3.3 fold, p<2.2 × 10(-16 for genes whose expression is positively correlated with expression of microRNAs targeting triplex binding sequences. This work has thus revealed a new mechanism by which microRNAs could interact with gene promoter regions to modify gene transcription.

  17. Structure of the murine Thy-1 gene. (United States)

    Giguére, V; Isobe, K; Grosveld, F


    We have cloned the murine Thy-1.1 (AKR) and Thy-1.2 (Balb/c) genes. The complete exon/intron structure and the nucleotide sequence of the Thy-1.2 gene was determined. The gene contains four exons and three intervening sequences. The complete transcriptional unit gives rise to a tissue and developmental stage-specific mRNA of 1850 bp. The 5' end of the gene has multiple initiation sites and a non-TATA box promoter. The 3' end shows a single polyadenylation site after a very long untranslated region. Images Fig. 3. Fig. 5. Fig. 6. Fig. 8. PMID:2866091

  18. Crystal Structure of the Eukaryotic Strong Inward-Rectifier K[superscript +] Channel Kir2.2 at 3.1 Å Resolution

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    Tao, Xiao; Avalos, Jose L.; Chen, Jiayun; MacKinnon, Roderick; (Rockefeller)


    Inward-rectifier potassium (K{sup +}) channels conduct K{sup +} ions most efficiently in one direction, into the cell. Kir2 channels control the resting membrane voltage in many electrically excitable cells, and heritable mutations cause periodic paralysis and cardiac arrhythmia. We present the crystal structure of Kir2.2 from chicken, which, excluding the unstructured amino and carboxyl termini, is 90% identical to human Kir2.2. Crystals containing rubidium (Rb{sup +}), strontium (Sr{sup 2+}), and europium (Eu{sup 3+}) reveal binding sites along the ion conduction pathway that are both conductive and inhibitory. The sites correlate with extensive electrophysiological data and provide a structural basis for understanding rectification. The channel's extracellular surface, with large structured turrets and an unusual selectivity filter entryway, might explain the relative insensitivity of eukaryotic inward rectifiers to toxins. These same surface features also suggest a possible approach to the development of inhibitory agents specific to each member of the inward-rectifier K{sup +} channel family.

  19. Viruses and viruslike particles of eukaryotic algae.


    Van Etten, J L; Lane, L C; Meints, R H


    Until recently there was little interest or information on viruses and viruslike particles of eukaryotic algae. However, this situation is changing. In the past decade many large double-stranded DNA-containing viruses that infect two culturable, unicellular, eukaryotic green algae have been discovered. These viruses can be produced in large quantities, assayed by plaque formation, and analyzed by standard bacteriophage techniques. The viruses are structurally similar to animal iridoviruses, t...

  20. Metabolic Constraints on the Eukaryotic Transition (United States)

    Wallace, Rodrick


    Mutualism, obligate mutualism, symbiosis, and the eukaryotic ‘fusion’ of Serial Endosymbiosis Theory represent progressively more rapid and less distorted real-time communication between biological structures instantiating information sources. Such progression in accurate information transmission requires, in turn, progressively greater channel capacity that, through the homology between information source uncertainty and free energy density, requires ever more energetic metabolism. The eukaryotic transition, according to this model, may have been entrained by an ecosystem resilience shift from anaerobic to aerobic metabolism.

  1. NMR screening and crystal quality of bacterially expressed prokaryotic and eukaryotic proteins in a structural genomics pipeline (United States)

    Page, Rebecca; Peti, Wolfgang; Wilson, Ian A.; Stevens, Raymond C.; Wüthrich, Kurt


    In the Joint Center for Structural Genomics, one-dimensional (1D) 1H NMR spectroscopy is routinely used to characterize the folded state of protein targets and, thus, serves to guide subsequent crystallization efforts and to identify proteins for NMR structure determination. Here, we describe 1D 1H NMR screening of a group of 79 mouse homologue proteins, which correlates the NMR data with the outcome of subsequent crystallization experiments and crystallographic structure determination. Based on the 1D 1H NMR spectra, the proteins are classified into four groups, “A” to “D.” A-type proteins are candidates for structure determination by NMR or crystallography; “B”-type are earmarked for crystallography; “C” indicates folded globular proteins with broadened line shapes; and “D” are nonglobular, “unfolded” polypeptides. The results obtained from coarse- and fine-screen crystallization trials imply that only A- and B-type proteins should be used for extensive crystallization trials in the future, with C and D proteins subjected only to coarse-screen crystallization trials. Of the presently studied 79 soluble protein targets, 63% yielded A- or B-quality 1D 1H NMR spectra. Although similar yields of crystallization hits were obtained for all four groups, A to D, crystals from A- and B-type proteins diffracted on average to significantly higher resolution than crystals produced from C- or D-type proteins. Furthermore, the output of refined crystal structures from this test set of proteins was 4-fold higher for A- and B-type than for C- and D-type proteins. PMID:15677718

  2. Computational identification of operon-like transcriptional loci in eukaryotes. (United States)

    Nannapaneni, Kishore; Ben-Shahar, Yehuda; Keen, Henry L; Welsh, Michael J; Casavant, Thomas L; Scheetz, Todd E


    Operons are primarily a bacterial phenomenon, not commonly observed in eukaryotes. However, new research indicates that operons are found in higher organisms as well. There are instances of operons found in C. elegans, Drosophila melanogaster and other eukaryotic species. We developed a prototype using positional, structural and gene expression information to identify candidate operons. We focused our efforts on "trans-spliced" operons in which the pre-mRNA is trans-spliced into individual transcripts and subsequently translated, as widely observed in C. elegans and some instances in Drosophila. We identify several candidate operons in Drosophila melanogaster of which two have been subsequently molecularly validated. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Eukaryotic expression, purification and structure/function analysis of native, recombinant CRISP3 from human and mouse (United States)

    Volpert, Marianna; Mangum, Jonathan E.; Jamsai, Duangporn; D'Sylva, Rebecca; O'Bryan, Moira K.; McIntyre, Peter


    While the Cysteine-Rich Secretory Proteins (CRISPs) have been broadly proposed as regulators of reproduction and immunity, physiological roles have yet to be established for individual members of this family. Past efforts to investigate their functions have been limited by the difficulty of purifying correctly folded CRISPs from bacterial expression systems, which yield low quantities of correctly folded protein containing the eight disulfide bonds that define the CRISP family. Here we report the expression and purification of native, glycosylated CRISP3 from human and mouse, expressed in HEK 293 cells and isolated using ion exchange and size exclusion chromatography. Functional authenticity was verified by substrate-affinity, native glycosylation characteristics and quaternary structure (monomer in solution). Validated protein was used in comparative structure/function studies to characterise sites and patterns of N-glycosylation in CRISP3, revealing interesting inter-species differences.

  4. Trichinella pseudospiralis vs. T. spiralis thymidylate synthase gene structure and T. pseudospiralis thymidylate synthase retrogene sequence (United States)


    Background Thymidylate synthase is a housekeeping gene, designated ancient due to its role in DNA synthesis and ubiquitous phyletic distribution. The genomic sequences were characterized coding for thymidylate synthase in two species of the genus Trichinella, an encapsulating T. spiralis and a non-encapsulating T. pseudospiralis. Methods Based on the sequence of parasitic nematode Trichinella spiralis thymidylate synthase cDNA, PCR techniques were employed. Results Each of the respective gene structures encompassed 6 exons and 5 introns located in conserved sites. Comparison with the corresponding gene structures of other eukaryotic species revealed lack of common introns that would be shared among selected fungi, nematodes, mammals and plants. The two deduced amino acid sequences were 96% identical. In addition to the thymidylate synthase gene, the intron-less retrocopy, i.e. a processed pseudogene, with sequence identical to the T. spiralis gene coding region, was found to be present within the T. pseudospiralis genome. This pseudogene, instead of the gene, was confirmed by RT-PCR to be expressed in the parasite muscle larvae. Conclusions Intron load, as well as distribution of exon and intron phases in thymidylate synthase genes from various sources, point against the theory of gene assembly by the primordial exon shuffling and support the theory of evolutionary late intron insertion into spliceosomal genes. Thymidylate synthase pseudogene expressed in T. pseudospiralis muscle larvae is designated a retrogene. PMID:24716800

  5. Trichinella pseudospiralis vs. T. spiralis thymidylate synthase gene structure and T. pseudospiralis thymidylate synthase retrogene sequence. (United States)

    Jagielska, Elżbieta; Płucienniczak, Andrzej; Dąbrowska, Magdalena; Dowierciał, Anna; Rode, Wojciech


    Thymidylate synthase is a housekeeping gene, designated ancient due to its role in DNA synthesis and ubiquitous phyletic distribution. The genomic sequences were characterized coding for thymidylate synthase in two species of the genus Trichinella, an encapsulating T. spiralis and a non-encapsulating T. pseudospiralis. Based on the sequence of parasitic nematode Trichinella spiralis thymidylate synthase cDNA, PCR techniques were employed. Each of the respective gene structures encompassed 6 exons and 5 introns located in conserved sites. Comparison with the corresponding gene structures of other eukaryotic species revealed lack of common introns that would be shared among selected fungi, nematodes, mammals and plants. The two deduced amino acid sequences were 96% identical. In addition to the thymidylate synthase gene, the intron-less retrocopy, i.e. a processed pseudogene, with sequence identical to the T. spiralis gene coding region, was found to be present within the T. pseudospiralis genome. This pseudogene, instead of the gene, was confirmed by RT-PCR to be expressed in the parasite muscle larvae. Intron load, as well as distribution of exon and intron phases in thymidylate synthase genes from various sources, point against the theory of gene assembly by the primordial exon shuffling and support the theory of evolutionary late intron insertion into spliceosomal genes. Thymidylate synthase pseudogene expressed in T. pseudospiralis muscle larvae is designated a retrogene.

  6. Architecture of the 90S Pre-ribosome: A Structural View on the Birth of the Eukaryotic Ribosome. (United States)

    Kornprobst, Markus; Turk, Martin; Kellner, Nikola; Cheng, Jingdong; Flemming, Dirk; Koš-Braun, Isabelle; Koš, Martin; Thoms, Matthias; Berninghausen, Otto; Beckmann, Roland; Hurt, Ed


    The 90S pre-ribosome is an early biogenesis intermediate formed during co-transcriptional ribosome formation, composed of ∼70 assembly factors and several small nucleolar RNAs (snoRNAs) that associate with nascent pre-rRNA. We report the cryo-EM structure of the Chaetomium thermophilum 90S pre-ribosome, revealing how a network of biogenesis factors including 19 β-propellers and large α-solenoid proteins engulfs the pre-rRNA. Within the 90S pre-ribosome, we identify the UTP-A, UTP-B, Mpp10-Imp3-Imp4, Bms1-Rcl1, and U3 snoRNP modules, which are organized around 5'-ETS and partially folded 18S rRNA. The U3 snoRNP is strategically positioned at the center of the 90S particle to perform its multiple tasks during pre-rRNA folding and processing. The architecture of the elusive 90S pre-ribosome gives unprecedented structural insight into the early steps of pre-rRNA maturation. Nascent rRNA that is co-transcriptionally folded and given a particular shape by encapsulation within a dedicated mold-like structure is reminiscent of how polypeptides use chaperone chambers for their protein folding. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Phylogenetic diversity and in situ detection of eukaryotes in anaerobic sludge digesters.

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    Miri Matsubayashi

    Full Text Available Eukaryotic communities in aerobic wastewater treatment processes are well characterized, but little is known about them in anaerobic processes. In this study, abundance, diversity and morphology of eukaryotes in anaerobic sludge digesters were investigated by quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR, 18S rRNA gene clone library construction and catalyzed reporter deposition-fluorescence in situ hybridization (CARD-FISH. Samples were taken from four different anaerobic sludge digesters in Japan. Results of qPCR of rRNA genes revealed that Eukarya accounted from 0.1% to 1.4% of the total number of microbial rRNA gene copy numbers. The phylogenetic affiliations of a total of 251 clones were Fungi, Alveolata, Viridiplantae, Amoebozoa, Rhizaria, Stramenopiles and Metazoa. Eighty-five percent of the clones showed less than 97.0% sequence identity to described eukaryotes, indicating most of the eukaryotes in anaerobic sludge digesters are largely unknown. Clones belonging to the uncultured lineage LKM11 in Cryptomycota of Fungi were most abundant in anaerobic sludge, which accounted for 50% of the total clones. The most dominant OTU in each library belonged to either the LKM11 lineage or the uncultured lineage A31 in Alveolata. Principal coordinate analysis indicated that the eukaryotic and prokaryotic community structures were related. The detection of anaerobic eukaryotes, including the members of the LKM11 and A31 lineages in anaerobic sludge digesters, by CARD-FISH revealed their sizes in the range of 2-8 μm. The diverse and uncultured eukaryotes in the LKM11 and the A31 lineages are common and ecologically relevant members in anaerobic sludge digester.

  8. Defensins: antifungal lessons from eukaryotes

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    Patrícia M. Silva


    Full Text Available Over the last years, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs have been the focus of intense research towards the finding of a viable alternative to current antifungal drugs. Defensins are one of the major families of AMPs and the most represented among all eukaryotic groups, providing an important first line of host defense against pathogenic microorganisms. Several of these cysteine-stabilized peptides present a relevant effect against fungi. Defensins are the AMPs with the broader distribution across all eukaryotic kingdoms, namely, Fungi, Plantæ and Animalia, and were recently shown to have an ancestor in a bacterial organism. As a part of the host defense, defensins act as an important vehicle of information between innate and adaptive immune system and have a role in immunomodulation. This multidimensionality represents a powerful host shield, hard for microorganisms to overcome using single approach resistance strategies. Pathogenic fungi resistance to conventional antimycotic drugs is becoming a major problem. Defensins, as other AMPs, have shown to be an effective alternative to the current antimycotic therapies, demonstrating potential as novel therapeutic agents or drug leads. In this review, we summarize the current knowledge on some eukaryotic defensins with antifungal action. An overview of the main targets in the fungal cell and the mechanism of action of these AMPs (namely, the selectivity for some fungal membrane components are presented. Additionally, recent works on antifungal defensins structure, activity and citotoxicity are also reviewed.

  9. The eukaryotic promoter database (EPD). (United States)

    Périer, R C; Praz, V; Junier, T; Bonnard, C; Bucher, P


    The Eukaryotic Promoter Database (EPD) is an annotated non-redundant collection of eukaryotic POL II promoters for which the transcription start site has been determined experimentally. Access to promoter sequences is provided by pointers to positions in nucleotide sequence entries. The annotation part of an entry includes a description of the initiation site mapping data, exhaustive cross-references to the EMBL nucleotide sequence database, SWISS-PROT, TRANSFAC and other databases, as well as bibliographic references. EPD is structured in a way that facilitates dynamic extraction of biologically meaningful promoter subsets for comparative sequence analysis. WWW-based interfaces have been developed that enable the user to view EPD entries in different formats, to select and extract promoter sequences according to a variety of criteria, and to navigate to related databases exploiting different cross-references. The EPD web site also features yearly updated base frequency matrices for major eukaryotic promoter elements. EPD can be accessed at

  10. From Structural Variation of Gene Molecules to Chromatin Dynamics and Transcriptional Bursting

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    Hinrich Boeger


    Full Text Available Transcriptional activation of eukaryotic genes is accompanied, in general, by a change in the sensitivity of promoter chromatin to endonucleases. The structural basis of this alteration has remained elusive for decades; but the change has been viewed as a transformation of one structure into another, from “closed” to “open” chromatin. In contradistinction to this static and deterministic view of the problem, a dynamical and probabilistic theory of promoter chromatin has emerged as its solution. This theory, which we review here, explains observed variation in promoter chromatin structure at the level of single gene molecules and provides a molecular basis for random bursting in transcription—the conjecture that promoters stochastically transition between transcriptionally conducive and inconducive states. The mechanism of transcriptional regulation may be understood only in probabilistic terms.

  11. Transfer of DNA from Bacteria to Eukaryotes

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    Benoît Lacroix


    Full Text Available Historically, the members of the Agrobacterium genus have been considered the only bacterial species naturally able to transfer and integrate DNA into the genomes of their eukaryotic hosts. Yet, increasing evidence suggests that this ability to genetically transform eukaryotic host cells might be more widespread in the bacterial world. Indeed, analyses of accumulating genomic data reveal cases of horizontal gene transfer from bacteria to eukaryotes and suggest that it represents a significant force in adaptive evolution of eukaryotic species. Specifically, recent reports indicate that bacteria other than Agrobacterium, such as Bartonella henselae (a zoonotic pathogen, Rhizobium etli (a plant-symbiotic bacterium related to Agrobacterium, or even Escherichia coli, have the ability to genetically transform their host cells under laboratory conditions. This DNA transfer relies on type IV secretion systems (T4SSs, the molecular machines that transport macromolecules during conjugative plasmid transfer and also during transport of proteins and/or DNA to the eukaryotic recipient cells. In this review article, we explore the extent of possible transfer of genetic information from bacteria to eukaryotic cells as well as the evolutionary implications and potential applications of this transfer.

  12. Structural effects of the Solanum steroids solasodine, diosgenin and solanine on human erythrocytes and molecular models of eukaryotic membranes. (United States)

    Manrique-Moreno, Marcela; Londoño-Londoño, Julián; Jemioła-Rzemińska, Małgorzata; Strzałka, Kazimierz; Villena, Fernando; Avello, Marcia; Suwalsky, Mario


    This report presents evidence that the following Solanum steroids: solasodine, diosgenin and solanine interact with human erythrocytes and molecular models of their membranes as follows: a) X-ray diffraction studies showed that the compounds at low molar ratios (0.1-10.0mol%) induced increasing structural perturbation to dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine bilayers and to a considerable lower extent to those of dimyristoylphosphatidylethanolamine; b) differential scanning calorimetry data showed that the compounds were able to alter the cooperativity of dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine, dimyristoylphosphatidylethanolamine and dimyristoylphosphatidylserine phase transitions in a concentration-dependent manner; c) in the presence of steroids, the fluorescence of Merocyanine 540 incorporated to the membranes decreased suggesting a fluidization of the lipid system; d) scanning electron microscopy observations showed that all steroids altered the normal shape of human erythrocytes inducing mainly echinocytosis, characterized by the formation of blebs in their surfaces, an indication that their molecules are located into the outer monolayer of the erythrocyte membrane. © 2013.

  13. Structural insights into a unique Hsp70-Hsp40 interaction in the eukaryotic ribosome-associated complex. (United States)

    Weyer, Felix Alexander; Gumiero, Andrea; Gesé, Genís Valentín; Lapouge, Karine; Sinning, Irmgard


    Cotranslational chaperones assist de novo folding of nascent polypeptides, prevent them from aggregating and modulate translation. The ribosome-associated complex (RAC) is unique in that the Hsp40 protein Zuo1 and the atypical Hsp70 chaperone Ssz1 form a stable heterodimer, which acts as a cochaperone for the Hsp70 chaperone Ssb. Here we present the structure of the Chaetomium thermophilum RAC core comprising Ssz1 and the Zuo1 N terminus. We show how the conserved allostery of Hsp70 proteins is abolished and this Hsp70-Hsp40 pair is molded into a functional unit. Zuo1 stabilizes Ssz1 in trans through interactions that in canonical Hsp70s occur in cis. Ssz1 is catalytically inert and cannot adopt the closed conformation, but the substrate binding domain β is completed by Zuo1. Our study offers insights into the coupling of a special Hsp70-Hsp40 pair, which evolved to link protein folding and translation.

  14. Cryoelectron Microscopic Structures of Eukaryotic Translation Termination Complexes Containing eRF1-eRF3 or eRF1-ABCE1

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    Anne Preis


    Full Text Available Termination and ribosome recycling are essential processes in translation. In eukaryotes, a stop codon in the ribosomal A site is decoded by a ternary complex consisting of release factors eRF1 and guanosine triphosphate (GTP-bound eRF3. After GTP hydrolysis, eRF3 dissociates, and ABCE1 can bind to eRF1-loaded ribosomes to stimulate peptide release and ribosomal subunit dissociation. Here, we present cryoelectron microscopic (cryo-EM structures of a pretermination complex containing eRF1-eRF3 and a termination/prerecycling complex containing eRF1-ABCE1. eRF1 undergoes drastic conformational changes: its central domain harboring the catalytically important GGQ loop is either packed against eRF3 or swung toward the peptidyl transferase center when bound to ABCE1. Additionally, in complex with eRF3, the N-terminal domain of eRF1 positions the conserved NIKS motif proximal to the stop codon, supporting its suggested role in decoding, yet it appears to be delocalized in the presence of ABCE1. These results suggest that stop codon decoding and peptide release can be uncoupled during termination.

  15. Comprehensive analysis of the numbers, lengths and amino acid compositions of transmembrane helices in prokaryotic, eukaryotic and viral integral membrane proteins of high-resolution structure. (United States)

    Saidijam, Massoud; Azizpour, Sonia; Patching, Simon G


    We report a comprehensive analysis of the numbers, lengths and amino acid compositions of transmembrane helices in 235 high-resolution structures of integral membrane proteins. The properties of 1551 transmembrane helices in the structures were compared with those obtained by analysis of the same amino acid sequences using topology prediction tools. Explanations for the 81 (5.2%) missing or additional transmembrane helices in the prediction results were identified. Main reasons for missing transmembrane helices were mis-identification of N-terminal signal peptides, breaks in α-helix conformation or charged residues in the middle of transmembrane helices and transmembrane helices with unusual amino acid composition. The main reason for additional transmembrane helices was mis-identification of amphipathic helices, extramembrane helices or hairpin re-entrant loops. Transmembrane helix length had an overall median of 24 residues and an average of 24.9 ± 7.0 residues and the most common length was 23 residues. The overall content of residues in transmembrane helices as a percentage of the full proteins had a median of 56.8% and an average of 55.7 ± 16.0%. Amino acid composition was analysed for the full proteins, transmembrane helices and extramembrane regions. Individual proteins or types of proteins with transmembrane helices containing extremes in contents of individual amino acids or combinations of amino acids with similar physicochemical properties were identified and linked to structure and/or function. In addition to overall median and average values, all results were analysed for proteins originating from different types of organism (prokaryotic, eukaryotic, viral) and for subgroups of receptors, channels, transporters and others.

  16. Sulfate assimilation in eukaryotes: fusions, relocations and lateral transfers

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    Durnford Dion G


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The sulfate assimilation pathway is present in photosynthetic organisms, fungi, and many bacteria, providing reduced sulfur for the synthesis of cysteine and methionine and a range of other metabolites. In photosynthetic eukaryotes sulfate is reduced in the plastids whereas in aplastidic eukaryotes the pathway is cytosolic. The only known exception is Euglena gracilis, where the pathway is localized in mitochondria. To obtain an insight into the evolution of the sulfate assimilation pathway in eukaryotes and relationships of the differently compartmentalized isoforms we determined the locations of the pathway in lineages for which this was unknown and performed detailed phylogenetic analyses of three enzymes involved in sulfate reduction: ATP sulfurylase (ATPS, adenosine 5'-phosphosulfate reductase (APR and sulfite reductase (SiR. Results The inheritance of ATPS, APR and the related 3'-phosphoadenosine 5'-phosphosulfate reductase (PAPR are remarkable, with multiple origins in the lineages that comprise the opisthokonts, different isoforms in chlorophytes and streptophytes, gene fusions with other enzymes of the pathway, evidence a eukaryote to prokaryote lateral gene transfer, changes in substrate specificity and two reversals of cellular location of host- and endosymbiont-originating enzymes. We also found that the ATPS and APR active in the mitochondria of Euglena were inherited from its secondary, green algal plastid. Conclusion Our results reveal a complex history for the enzymes of the sulfate assimilation pathway. Whilst they shed light on the origin of some characterised novelties, such as a recently described novel isoform of APR from Bryophytes and the origin of the pathway active in the mitochondria of Euglenids, the many distinct and novel isoforms identified here represent an excellent resource for detailed biochemical studies of the enzyme structure/function relationships.

  17. What's in a genome? The C-value enigma and the evolution of eukaryotic genome content. (United States)

    Elliott, Tyler A; Gregory, T Ryan


    Some notable exceptions aside, eukaryotic genomes are distinguished from those of Bacteria and Archaea in a number of ways, including chromosome structure and number, repetitive DNA content, and the presence of introns in protein-coding regions. One of the most notable differences between eukaryotic and prokaryotic genomes is in size. Unlike their prokaryotic counterparts, eukaryotes exhibit enormous (more than 60,000-fold) variability in genome size which is not explained by differences in gene number. Genome size is known to correlate with cell size and division rate, and by extension with numerous organism-level traits such as metabolism, developmental rate or body size. Less well described are the relationships between genome size and other properties of the genome, such as gene content, transposable element content, base pair composition and related features. The rapid expansion of 'complete' genome sequencing projects has, for the first time, made it possible to examine these relationships across a wide range of eukaryotes in order to shed new light on the causes and correlates of genome size diversity. This study presents the results of phylogenetically informed comparisons of genome data for more than 500 species of eukaryotes. Several relationships are described between genome size and other genomic parameters, and some recommendations are presented for how these insights can be extended even more broadly in the future. © 2015 The Author(s).

  18. Comparative Analysis of the 15.5kD Box C/D snoRNP Core Protein in the Primitive Eukaryote Giardia lamblia Reveals Unique Structural and Functional Features

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Biswas, Shyamasri; Buhrman, Greg; Gagnon, Keith; Mattos, Carla; Brown, II, Bernard A.; Maxwell, E. Stuart (NCSU); (UTSMC)


    Box C/D ribonucleoproteins (RNP) guide the 2'-O-methylation of targeted nucleotides in archaeal and eukaryotic rRNAs. The archaeal L7Ae and eukaryotic 15.5kD box C/D RNP core protein homologues initiate RNP assembly by recognizing kink-turn (K-turn) motifs. The crystal structure of the 15.5kD core protein from the primitive eukaryote Giardia lamblia is described here to a resolution of 1.8 {angstrom}. The Giardia 15.5kD protein exhibits the typical {alpha}-{beta}-{alpha} sandwich fold exhibited by both archaeal L7Ae and eukaryotic 15.5kD proteins. Characteristic of eukaryotic homologues, the Giardia 15.5kD protein binds the K-turn motif but not the variant K-loop motif. The highly conserved residues of loop 9, critical for RNA binding, also exhibit conformations similar to those of the human 15.5kD protein when bound to the K-turn motif. However, comparative sequence analysis indicated a distinct evolutionary position between Archaea and Eukarya. Indeed, assessment of the Giardia 15.5kD protein in denaturing experiments demonstrated an intermediate stability in protein structure when compared with that of the eukaryotic mouse 15.5kD and archaeal Methanocaldococcus jannaschii L7Ae proteins. Most notable was the ability of the Giardia 15.5kD protein to assemble in vitro a catalytically active chimeric box C/D RNP utilizing the archaeal M. jannaschii Nop56/58 and fibrillarin core proteins. In contrast, a catalytically competent chimeric RNP could not be assembled using the mouse 15.5kD protein. Collectively, these analyses suggest that the G. lamblia 15.5kD protein occupies a unique position in the evolution of this box C/D RNP core protein retaining structural and functional features characteristic of both archaeal L7Ae and higher eukaryotic 15.5kD homologues.

  19. Precambrian Skeletonized Microbial Eukaryotes (United States)

    Lipps, Jere H.


    Skeletal heterotrophic eukaryotes are mostly absent from the Precambrian, although algal eukaryotes appear about 2.2 billion years ago. Tintinnids, radiolaria and foraminifera have molecular origins well back into the Precambrian yet no representatives of these groups are known with certainty in that time. These data infer times of the last common ancestors, not the appearance of true representatives of these groups which may well have diversified or not been preserved since those splits. Previous reports of these groups in the Precambrian are misinterpretations of other objects in the fossil record. Reported tintinnids at 1600 mya from China are metamorphic shards or mineral artifacts, the many specimens from 635-715 mya in Mongolia may be eukaryotes but they are not tintinnids, and the putative tintinnids at 580 mya in the Doushantou formation of China are diagenetic alterations of well-known acritarchs. The oldest supposed foraminiferan is Titanotheca from 550 to 565 mya rocks in South America and Africa is based on the occurrence of rutile in the tests and in a few modern agglutinated foraminifera, as well as the agglutinated tests. Neither of these nor the morphology are characteristic of foraminifera; hence these fossils remain as indeterminate microfossils. Platysolenites, an agglutinated tube identical to the modern foraminiferan Bathysiphon, occurs in the latest Neoproterozoic in Russia, Canada, and the USA (California). Some of the larger fossils occurring in typical Ediacaran (late Neoproterozoic) assemblages may be xenophyophorids (very large foraminifera), but the comparison is disputed and flawed. Radiolaria, on occasion, have been reported in the Precambrian, but the earliest known clearly identifiable ones are in the Cambrian. The only certain Precambrian heterotrophic skeletal eukaryotes (thecamoebians) occur in fresh-water rocks at about 750 mya. Skeletonized radiolaria and foraminifera appear sparsely in the Cambrian and radiate in the Ordovician

  20. A case study for effects of operational taxonomic units from intracellular endoparasites and ciliates on the eukaryotic phylogeny: phylogenetic position of the haptophyta in analyses of multiple slowly evolving genes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hisayoshi Nozaki

    Full Text Available Recent multigene phylogenetic analyses have contributed much to our understanding of eukaryotic phylogeny. However, the phylogenetic positions of various lineages within the eukaryotes have remained unresolved or in conflict between different phylogenetic studies. These phylogenetic ambiguities might have resulted from mixtures or integration from various factors including limited taxon sampling, missing data in the alignment, saturations of rapidly evolving genes, mixed analyses of short- and long-branched operational taxonomic units (OTUs, intracellular endoparasite and ciliate OTUs with unusual substitution etc. In order to evaluate the effects from intracellular endoparasite and ciliate OTUs co-analyzed on the eukaryotic phylogeny and simplify the results, we here used two different sets of data matrices of multiple slowly evolving genes with small amounts of missing data and examined the phylogenetic position of the secondary photosynthetic chromalveolates Haptophyta, one of the most abundant groups of oceanic phytoplankton and significant primary producers. In both sets, a robust sister relationship between Haptophyta and SAR (stramenopiles, alveolates, rhizarians, or SA [stramenopiles and alveolates] was resolved when intracellular endoparasite/ciliate OTUs were excluded, but not in their presence. Based on comparisons of character optimizations on a fixed tree (with a clade composed of haptophytes and SAR or SA, disruption of the monophyly between haptophytes and SAR (or SA in the presence of intracellular endoparasite/ciliate OTUs can be considered to be a result of multiple evolutionary reversals of character positions that supported the synapomorphy of the haptophyte and SAR (or SA clade in the absence of intracellular endoparasite/ciliate OTUs.

  1. The vertebrate RCAN gene family: novel insights into evolution, structure and regulation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva Serrano-Candelas

    Full Text Available Recently there has been much interest in the Regulators of Calcineurin (RCAN proteins which are important endogenous modulators of the calcineurin-NFATc signalling pathway. They have been shown to have a crucial role in cellular programmes such as the immune response, muscle fibre remodelling and memory, but also in pathological processes such as cardiac hypertrophy and neurodegenerative diseases. In vertebrates, the RCAN family form a functional subfamily of three members RCAN1, RCAN2 and RCAN3 whereas only one RCAN is present in the rest of Eukarya. In addition, RCAN genes have been shown to collocate with RUNX and CLIC genes in ACD clusters (ACD21, ACD6 and ACD1. How the RCAN genes and their clustering in ACDs evolved is still unknown. After analysing RCAN gene family evolution using bioinformatic tools, we propose that the three RCAN vertebrate genes within the ACD clusters, which evolved from single copy genes present in invertebrates and lower eukaryotes, are the result of two rounds of whole genome duplication, followed by a segmental duplication. This evolutionary scenario involves the loss or gain of some RCAN genes during evolution. In addition, we have analysed RCAN gene structure and identified the existence of several characteristic features that can be involved in RCAN evolution and gene expression regulation. These included: several transposable elements, CpG islands in the 5' region of the genes, the existence of antisense transcripts (NAT associated with the three human genes, and considerable evidence for bidirectional promoters that regulate RCAN gene expression. Furthermore, we show that the CpG island associated with the RCAN3 gene promoter is unmethylated and transcriptionally active. All these results provide timely new insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying RCAN function and a more in depth knowledge of this gene family whose members are obvious candidates for the development of future therapies.

  2. diArk – a resource for eukaryotic genome research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kollmar Martin


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The number of completed eukaryotic genome sequences and cDNA projects has increased exponentially in the past few years although most of them have not been published yet. In addition, many microarray analyses yielded thousands of sequenced EST and cDNA clones. For the researcher interested in single gene analyses (from a phylogenetic, a structural biology or other perspective it is therefore important to have up-to-date knowledge about the various resources providing primary data. Description The database is built around 3 central tables: species, sequencing projects and publications. The species table contains commonly and alternatively used scientific names, common names and the complete taxonomic information. For projects the sequence type and links to species project web-sites and species homepages are stored. All publications are linked to projects. The web-interface provides comprehensive search modules with detailed options and three different views of the selected data. We have especially focused on developing an elaborate taxonomic tree search tool that allows the user to instantaneously identify e.g. the closest relative to the organism of interest. Conclusion We have developed a database, called diArk, to store, organize, and present the most relevant information about completed genome projects and EST/cDNA data from eukaryotes. Currently, diArk provides information about 415 eukaryotes, 823 sequencing projects, and 248 publications.

  3. A versatile selection system for folding competent proteins using genetic complementation in a eukaryotic host

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lyngsø, C.; Kjaerulff, S.; Muller, S.


    -control systems to retain misfolded proteins in the ER and redirect them for cytosolic degradation, thereby only allowing folded proteins to reach the cell surface. Accordingly, the folding potential of the tested protein determines the ability of autotrophic colony growth. This system was successfully......Recombinant expression of native or modified eukaryotic proteins is pivotal for structural and functional studies and for industrial and pharmaceutical production of proteins. However, it is often impeded by the lack of proper folding. Here, we present a stringent and broadly applicable eukaryotic...... in vivo selection system for folded proteins. It is based on genetic complementation of the Schizosaccharomyces pombe growth marker gene invertase fused C-terminally to a protein library. The fusion proteins are directed to the secretion system, utilizing the ability of the eukaryotic protein quality...

  4. Atypical mitochondrial inheritance patterns in eukaryotes. (United States)

    Breton, Sophie; Stewart, Donald T


    Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) is predominantly maternally inherited in eukaryotes. Diverse molecular mechanisms underlying the phenomenon of strict maternal inheritance (SMI) of mtDNA have been described, but the evolutionary forces responsible for its predominance in eukaryotes remain to be elucidated. Exceptions to SMI have been reported in diverse eukaryotic taxa, leading to the prediction that several distinct molecular mechanisms controlling mtDNA transmission are present among the eukaryotes. We propose that these mechanisms will be better understood by studying the deviations from the predominating pattern of SMI. This minireview summarizes studies on eukaryote species with unusual or rare mitochondrial inheritance patterns, i.e., other than the predominant SMI pattern, such as maternal inheritance of stable heteroplasmy, paternal leakage of mtDNA, biparental and strictly paternal inheritance, and doubly uniparental inheritance of mtDNA. The potential genes and mechanisms involved in controlling mitochondrial inheritance in these organisms are discussed. The linkage between mitochondrial inheritance and sex determination is also discussed, given that the atypical systems of mtDNA inheritance examined in this minireview are frequently found in organisms with uncommon sexual systems such as gynodioecy, monoecy, or andromonoecy. The potential of deviations from SMI for facilitating a better understanding of a number of fundamental questions in biology, such as the evolution of mtDNA inheritance, the coevolution of nuclear and mitochondrial genomes, and, perhaps, the role of mitochondria in sex determination, is considerable.

  5. The COG database: an updated version includes eukaryotes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sverdlov Alexander V


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The availability of multiple, essentially complete genome sequences of prokaryotes and eukaryotes spurred both the demand and the opportunity for the construction of an evolutionary classification of genes from these genomes. Such a classification system based on orthologous relationships between genes appears to be a natural framework for comparative genomics and should facilitate both functional annotation of genomes and large-scale evolutionary studies. Results We describe here a major update of the previously developed system for delineation of Clusters of Orthologous Groups of proteins (COGs from the sequenced genomes of prokaryotes and unicellular eukaryotes and the construction of clusters of predicted orthologs for 7 eukaryotic genomes, which we named KOGs after eukaryotic orthologous groups. The COG collection currently consists of 138,458 proteins, which form 4873 COGs and comprise 75% of the 185,505 (predicted proteins encoded in 66 genomes of unicellular organisms. The eukaryotic orthologous groups (KOGs include proteins from 7 eukaryotic genomes: three animals (the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster and Homo sapiens, one plant, Arabidopsis thaliana, two fungi (Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Schizosaccharomyces pombe, and the intracellular microsporidian parasite Encephalitozoon cuniculi. The current KOG set consists of 4852 clusters of orthologs, which include 59,838 proteins, or ~54% of the analyzed eukaryotic 110,655 gene products. Compared to the coverage of the prokaryotic genomes with COGs, a considerably smaller fraction of eukaryotic genes could be included into the KOGs; addition of new eukaryotic genomes is expected to result in substantial increase in the coverage of eukaryotic genomes with KOGs. Examination of the phyletic patterns of KOGs reveals a conserved core represented in all analyzed species and consisting of ~20% of the KOG set. This conserved portion of the

  6. Solution Structure of Archaeoglobus fulgidis Peptidyl-tRNA Hydrolase(Pth2) Provides Evidence for an Extensive Conserved Family of Pth2 Enzymes in Archaea, Bacteria and Eukaryotes.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Powers, Robert; Mirkovic, Nebojsa; Goldsmith-Fischman, Sharon; Acton, Thomas; Chiang, Yiwen; Huang, Yuanpeng; Ma, LiChung; Rajan, Paranji K.; Cort, John R.; Kennedy, Michael A.; Liu, Jinfeng; Rost, Burkhard; Honig, Barry; Murray, Diana; Montelione, Gaetano


    The solution structure of protein AF2095 from the thermophilic archaea Archaeglobus fulgidis, a 123-residue (13.6 kDa) protein, has been determined by NMR methods. The structure of AF2095 is comprised of four a-helices and a mixed b-sheet consisting of four parallel and anti-parallel b-strands, where the a-helices sandwich the b-sheet. Sequence and structural comparison of AF2095 with proteins from Homo sapiens, Methanocaldococcus jannaschii and Sulfolobus solfataricus, reveals that AF2095 is a peptidyl-tRNA hydrolase (Pth2). This structural comparison also identifies putative catalytic residues and a tRNA interaction region for AF2095. The structure of AF2095 is also similar to the structure of protein TA0108 from archaea Thermoplasma acidophilum, which is deposited in the Protein Database but not functionally annotated. The NMR structure of AF2095 has been further leveraged to obtain good quality structural models for 55 other proteins. Although earlier studies have proposed that the Pth2 protein family is restricted to archeal and eukaryotic organisms, the similarity of the AF2095 structure to human Pth2, the conservation of key active-site residues, and the good quality of the resulting homology models demonstrate a large family of homologous Pth2 proteins that are conserved in eukaryotic, archaeal and bacterial organisms, providing novel insights in the evolution of the Pth and Pth2 enzyme families.

  7. A scalable algorithm for structure identification of complex gene regulatory network from temporal expression data. (United States)

    Gui, Shupeng; Rice, Andrew P; Chen, Rui; Wu, Liang; Liu, Ji; Miao, Hongyu


    Gene regulatory interactions are of fundamental importance to various biological functions and processes. However, only a few previous computational studies have claimed success in revealing genome-wide regulatory landscapes from temporal gene expression data, especially for complex eukaryotes like human. Moreover, recent work suggests that these methods still suffer from the curse of dimensionality if a network size increases to 100 or higher. Here we present a novel scalable algorithm for identifying genome-wide gene regulatory network (GRN) structures, and we have verified the algorithm performances by extensive simulation studies based on the DREAM challenge benchmark data. The highlight of our method is that its superior performance does not degenerate even for a network size on the order of 10(4), and is thus readily applicable to large-scale complex networks. Such a breakthrough is achieved by considering both prior biological knowledge and multiple topological properties (i.e., sparsity and hub gene structure) of complex networks in the regularized formulation. We also validate and illustrate the application of our algorithm in practice using the time-course gene expression data from a study on human respiratory epithelial cells in response to influenza A virus (IAV) infection, as well as the CHIP-seq data from ENCODE on transcription factor (TF) and target gene interactions. An interesting finding, owing to the proposed algorithm, is that the biggest hub structures (e.g., top ten) in the GRN all center at some transcription factors in the context of epithelial cell infection by IAV. The proposed algorithm is the first scalable method for large complex network structure identification. The GRN structure identified by our algorithm could reveal possible biological links and help researchers to choose which gene functions to investigate in a biological event. The algorithm described in this article is implemented in MATLAB (Ⓡ) , and the source code is

  8. Convergent use of RhoGAP toxins by eukaryotic parasites and bacterial pathogens.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dominique Colinet


    Full Text Available Inactivation of host Rho GTPases is a widespread strategy employed by bacterial pathogens to manipulate mammalian cellular functions and avoid immune defenses. Some bacterial toxins mimic eukaryotic Rho GTPase-activating proteins (GAPs to inactivate mammalian GTPases, probably as a result of evolutionary convergence. An intriguing question remains whether eukaryotic pathogens or parasites may use endogenous GAPs as immune-suppressive toxins to target the same key genes as bacterial pathogens. Interestingly, a RhoGAP domain-containing protein, LbGAP, was recently characterized from the parasitoid wasp Leptopilina boulardi, and shown to protect parasitoid eggs from the immune response of Drosophila host larvae. We demonstrate here that LbGAP has structural characteristics of eukaryotic RhoGAPs but that it acts similarly to bacterial RhoGAP toxins in mammals. First, we show by immunocytochemistry that LbGAP enters Drosophila immune cells, plasmatocytes and lamellocytes, and that morphological changes in lamellocytes are correlated with the quantity of LbGAP they contain. Demonstration that LbGAP displays a GAP activity and specifically interacts with the active, GTP-bound form of the two Drosophila Rho GTPases Rac1 and Rac2, both required for successful encapsulation of Leptopilina eggs, was then achieved using biochemical tests, yeast two-hybrid analysis, and GST pull-down assays. In addition, we show that the overall structure of LbGAP is similar to that of eukaryotic RhoGAP domains, and we identify distinct residues involved in its interaction with Rac GTPases. Altogether, these results show that eukaryotic parasites can use endogenous RhoGAPs as virulence factors and that despite their differences in sequence and structure, eukaryotic and bacterial RhoGAP toxins are similarly used to target the same immune pathways in insects and mammals.

  9. Endosymbiotic theories for eukaryote origin. (United States)

    Martin, William F; Garg, Sriram; Zimorski, Verena


    For over 100 years, endosymbiotic theories have figured in thoughts about the differences between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. More than 20 different versions of endosymbiotic theory have been presented in the literature to explain the origin of eukaryotes and their mitochondria. Very few of those models account for eukaryotic anaerobes. The role of energy and the energetic constraints that prokaryotic cell organization placed on evolutionary innovation in cell history has recently come to bear on endosymbiotic theory. Only cells that possessed mitochondria had the bioenergetic means to attain eukaryotic cell complexity, which is why there are no true intermediates in the prokaryote-to-eukaryote transition. Current versions of endosymbiotic theory have it that the host was an archaeon (an archaebacterium), not a eukaryote. Hence the evolutionary history and biology of archaea increasingly comes to bear on eukaryotic origins, more than ever before. Here, we have compiled a survey of endosymbiotic theories for the origin of eukaryotes and mitochondria, and for the origin of the eukaryotic nucleus, summarizing the essentials of each and contrasting some of their predictions to the observations. A new aspect of endosymbiosis in eukaryote evolution comes into focus from these considerations: the host for the origin of plastids was a facultative anaerobe. © 2015 The Authors.

  10. Endosymbiotic theories for eukaryote origin (United States)

    Martin, William F.; Garg, Sriram; Zimorski, Verena


    For over 100 years, endosymbiotic theories have figured in thoughts about the differences between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. More than 20 different versions of endosymbiotic theory have been presented in the literature to explain the origin of eukaryotes and their mitochondria. Very few of those models account for eukaryotic anaerobes. The role of energy and the energetic constraints that prokaryotic cell organization placed on evolutionary innovation in cell history has recently come to bear on endosymbiotic theory. Only cells that possessed mitochondria had the bioenergetic means to attain eukaryotic cell complexity, which is why there are no true intermediates in the prokaryote-to-eukaryote transition. Current versions of endosymbiotic theory have it that the host was an archaeon (an archaebacterium), not a eukaryote. Hence the evolutionary history and biology of archaea increasingly comes to bear on eukaryotic origins, more than ever before. Here, we have compiled a survey of endosymbiotic theories for the origin of eukaryotes and mitochondria, and for the origin of the eukaryotic nucleus, summarizing the essentials of each and contrasting some of their predictions to the observations. A new aspect of endosymbiosis in eukaryote evolution comes into focus from these considerations: the host for the origin of plastids was a facultative anaerobe. PMID:26323761

  11. VizPrimer: a web server for visualized PCR primer design based on known gene structure. (United States)

    Zhou, Yang; Qu, Wubin; Lu, Yiming; Zhang, Yanchun; Wang, Xiaolei; Zhao, Dongsheng; Yang, Yi; Zhang, Chenggang


    The visualization of gene structure plays an important role in polymerase chain reaction (PCR) primer design, especially for eukaryotic genes with a number of splice variants that users need to distinguish between via PCR. Here, we describe a visualized web server for primer design named VizPrimer. It utilizes the new information technology (IT) tools, HTML5 to display gene structure and JavaScript to interact with the users. In VizPrimer, the users can focus their attention on the gene structure and primer design strategy, without wasting time calculating the exon positions of splice variants or manually configuring complicated parameters. In addition, VizPrimer is also suitable for the design of PCR primers for amplifying open reading frames and detecting single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). VizPrimer is freely available at The web server supported browsers: Chrome (≥5.0), Firefox (≥3.0), Safari (≥4.0) and Opera (≥10.0).;

  12. The Mycoplasma hominis vaa gene displays a mosaic gene structure

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boesen, Thomas; Emmersen, Jeppe M. G.; Jensen, Lise T.


    Mycoplasma hominis contains a variable adherence-associated (vaa) gene. To classify variants of the vaa genes, we examined 42 M. hominis isolated by PCR, DNA sequencing and immunoblotting. This uncovered the existence of five gene categories. Comparison of the gene types revealed a modular...

  13. Morphological and ecological complexity in early eukaryotic ecosystems. (United States)

    Javaux, E J; Knoll, A H; Walter, M R


    Molecular phylogeny and biogeochemistry indicate that eukaryotes differentiated early in Earth history. Sequence comparisons of small-subunit ribosomal RNA genes suggest a deep evolutionary divergence of Eukarya and Archaea; C27-C29 steranes (derived from sterols synthesized by eukaryotes) and strong depletion of 13C (a biogeochemical signature of methanogenic Archaea) in 2,700 Myr old kerogens independently place a minimum age on this split. Steranes, large spheroidal microfossils, and rare macrofossils of possible eukaryotic origin occur in Palaeoproterozoic rocks. Until now, however, evidence for morphological and taxonomic diversification within the domain has generally been restricted to very late Mesoproterozoic and Neoproterozoic successions. Here we show that the cytoskeletal and ecological prerequisites for eukaryotic diversification were already established in eukaryotic microorganisms fossilized nearly 1,500 Myr ago in shales of the early Mesoproterozoic Roper Group in northern Australia.

  14. Eukaryotic DNA Replication Fork. (United States)

    Burgers, Peter M J; Kunkel, Thomas A


    This review focuses on the biogenesis and composition of the eukaryotic DNA replication fork, with an emphasis on the enzymes that synthesize DNA and repair discontinuities on the lagging strand of the replication fork. Physical and genetic methodologies aimed at understanding these processes are discussed. The preponderance of evidence supports a model in which DNA polymerase ε (Pol ε) carries out the bulk of leading strand DNA synthesis at an undisturbed replication fork. DNA polymerases α and δ carry out the initiation of Okazaki fragment synthesis and its elongation and maturation, respectively. This review also discusses alternative proposals, including cellular processes during which alternative forks may be utilized, and new biochemical studies with purified proteins that are aimed at reconstituting leading and lagging strand DNA synthesis separately and as an integrated replication fork.

  15. Energetics and genetics across the prokaryote-eukaryote divide (United States)


    Background All complex life on Earth is eukaryotic. All eukaryotic cells share a common ancestor that arose just once in four billion years of evolution. Prokaryotes show no tendency to evolve greater morphological complexity, despite their metabolic virtuosity. Here I argue that the eukaryotic cell originated in a unique prokaryotic endosymbiosis, a singular event that transformed the selection pressures acting on both host and endosymbiont. Results The reductive evolution and specialisation of endosymbionts to mitochondria resulted in an extreme genomic asymmetry, in which the residual mitochondrial genomes enabled the expansion of bioenergetic membranes over several orders of magnitude, overcoming the energetic constraints on prokaryotic genome size, and permitting the host cell genome to expand (in principle) over 200,000-fold. This energetic transformation was permissive, not prescriptive; I suggest that the actual increase in early eukaryotic genome size was driven by a heavy early bombardment of genes and introns from the endosymbiont to the host cell, producing a high mutation rate. Unlike prokaryotes, with lower mutation rates and heavy selection pressure to lose genes, early eukaryotes without genome-size limitations could mask mutations by cell fusion and genome duplication, as in allopolyploidy, giving rise to a proto-sexual cell cycle. The side effect was that a large number of shared eukaryotic basal traits accumulated in the same population, a sexual eukaryotic common ancestor, radically different to any known prokaryote. Conclusions The combination of massive bioenergetic expansion, release from genome-size constraints, and high mutation rate favoured a protosexual cell cycle and the accumulation of eukaryotic traits. These factors explain the unique origin of eukaryotes, the absence of true evolutionary intermediates, and the evolution of sex in eukaryotes but not prokaryotes. Reviewers This article was reviewed by: Eugene Koonin, William Martin

  16. Expanding the eukaryotic genetic code (United States)

    Chin, Jason W.; Cropp, T. Ashton; Anderson, J. Christopher; Schultz, Peter G.


    This invention provides compositions and methods for producing translational components that expand the number of genetically encoded amino acids in eukaryotic cells. The components include orthogonal tRNAs, orthogonal aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases, orthogonal pairs of tRNAs/synthetases and unnatural amino acids. Proteins and methods of producing proteins with unnatural amino acids in eukaryotic cells are also provided.

  17. Expanding the eukaryotic genetic code

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chin, Jason W.; Cropp, T. Ashton; Anderson, J. Christopher; Schultz, Peter G.


    This invention provides compositions and methods for producing translational components that expand the number of genetically encoded amino acids in eukaryotic cells. The components include orthogonal tRNAs, orthogonal aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases, orthogonal pairs of tRNAs/synthetases and unnatural amino acids. Proteins and methods of producing proteins with unnatural amino acids in eukaryotic cells are also provided.

  18. Changes in global gene expression in response to chemical and genetic perturbation of chromatin structure (United States)

    DNA methylation and histone acetylation are important for controlling gene expression in all eukaryotes. Microarray analysis revealed an altered gene expression profile after treatment with the DNA methylation inhibitor 5-aza-2’ deoxyctidine (5-AC), which included the upregulation of many transposab...

  19. Distribution and Diversity of Microbial Eukaryotes in Bathypelagic Waters of the South China Sea. (United States)

    Xu, Dapeng; Jiao, Nianzhi; Ren, Rui; Warren, Alan


    Little is known about the biodiversity of microbial eukaryotes in the South China Sea, especially in waters at bathyal depths. Here, we employed SSU rDNA gene sequencing to reveal the diversity and community structure across depth and distance gradients in the South China Sea. Vertically, the highest alpha diversity was found at 75-m depth. The communities of microbial eukaryotes were clustered into shallow-, middle-, and deep-water groups according to the depth from which they were collected, indicating a depth-related diversity and distribution pattern. Rhizaria sequences dominated the microeukaryote community and occurred in all samples except those from less than 50-m deep, being most abundant near the sea floor where they contributed ca. 64-97% and 40-74% of the total sequences and OTUs recovered, respectively. A large portion of rhizarian OTUs has neither a nearest named neighbor nor a nearest neighbor in the GenBank database which indicated the presence of new phylotypes in the South China Sea. Given their overwhelming abundance and richness, further phylogenetic analysis of rhizarians were performed and three new genetic clusters were revealed containing sequences retrieved from the deep waters of the South China Sea. Our results shed light on the diversity and community structure of microbial eukaryotes in this not yet fully explored area. © 2016 The Author(s) Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology © 2016 International Society of Protistologists.

  20. Endosymbiosis and Eukaryotic Cell Evolution. (United States)

    Archibald, John M


    Understanding the evolution of eukaryotic cellular complexity is one of the grand challenges of modern biology. It has now been firmly established that mitochondria and plastids, the classical membrane-bound organelles of eukaryotic cells, evolved from bacteria by endosymbiosis. In the case of mitochondria, evidence points very clearly to an endosymbiont of α-proteobacterial ancestry. The precise nature of the host cell that partnered with this endosymbiont is, however, very much an open question. And while the host for the cyanobacterial progenitor of the plastid was undoubtedly a fully-fledged eukaryote, how - and how often - plastids moved from one eukaryote to another during algal diversification is vigorously debated. In this article I frame modern views on endosymbiotic theory in a historical context, highlighting the transformative role DNA sequencing played in solving early problems in eukaryotic cell evolution, and posing key unanswered questions emerging from the age of comparative genomics. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Microbial eukaryote plankton communities of high-mountain lakes from three continents exhibit strong biogeographic patterns. (United States)

    Filker, Sabine; Sommaruga, Ruben; Vila, Irma; Stoeck, Thorsten


    Microbial eukaryotes hold a key role in aquatic ecosystem functioning. Yet, their diversity in freshwater lakes, particularly in high-mountain lakes, is relatively unknown compared with the marine environment. Low nutrient availability, low water temperature and high ultraviolet radiation make most high-mountain lakes extremely challenging habitats for life and require specific molecular and physiological adaptations. We therefore expected that these ecosystems support a plankton diversity that differs notably from other freshwater lakes. In addition, we hypothesized that the communities under study exhibit geographic structuring. Our rationale was that geographic dispersal of small-sized eukaryotes in high-mountain lakes over continental distances seems difficult. We analysed hypervariable V4 fragments of the SSU rRNA gene to compare the genetic microbial eukaryote diversity in high-mountain lakes located in the European Alps, the Chilean Altiplano and the Ethiopian Bale Mountains. Microbial eukaryotes were not globally distributed corroborating patterns found for bacteria, multicellular animals and plants. Instead, the plankton community composition emerged as a highly specific fingerprint of a geographic region even on higher taxonomic levels. The intraregional heterogeneity of the investigated lakes was mirrored in shifts in microbial eukaryote community structure, which, however, was much less pronounced compared with interregional beta-diversity. Statistical analyses revealed that on a regional scale, environmental factors are strong predictors for plankton community structures in high-mountain lakes. While on long-distance scales (>10 000 km), isolation by distance is the most plausible scenario, on intermediate scales (up to 6000 km), both contemporary environmental factors and historical contingencies interact to shift plankton community structures. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  2. ParsEval: parallel comparison and analysis of gene structure annotations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Standage Daniel S


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Accurate gene structure annotation is a fundamental but somewhat elusive goal of genome projects, as witnessed by the fact that (model genomes typically undergo several cycles of re-annotation. In many cases, it is not only different versions of annotations that need to be compared but also different sources of annotation of the same genome, derived from distinct gene prediction workflows. Such comparisons are of interest to annotation providers, prediction software developers, and end-users, who all need to assess what is common and what is different among distinct annotation sources. We developed ParsEval, a software application for pairwise comparison of sets of gene structure annotations. ParsEval calculates several statistics that highlight the similarities and differences between the two sets of annotations provided. These statistics are presented in an aggregate summary report, with additional details provided as individual reports specific to non-overlapping, gene-model-centric genomic loci. Genome browser styled graphics embedded in these reports help visualize the genomic context of the annotations. Output from ParsEval is both easily read and parsed, enabling systematic identification of problematic gene models for subsequent focused analysis. Results ParsEval is capable of analyzing annotations for large eukaryotic genomes on typical desktop or laptop hardware. In comparison to existing methods, ParsEval exhibits a considerable performance improvement, both in terms of runtime and memory consumption. Reports from ParsEval can provide relevant biological insights into the gene structure annotations being compared. Conclusions Implemented in C, ParsEval provides the quickest and most feature-rich solution for genome annotation comparison to date. The source code is freely available (under an ISC license at

  3. Cytokinesis in eukaryotes. (United States)

    Guertin, David A; Trautmann, Susanne; McCollum, Dannel


    Cytokinesis is the final event of the cell division cycle, and its completion results in irreversible partition of a mother cell into two daughter cells. Cytokinesis was one of the first cell cycle events observed by simple cell biological techniques; however, molecular characterization of cytokinesis has been slowed by its particular resistance to in vitro biochemical approaches. In recent years, the use of genetic model organisms has greatly advanced our molecular understanding of cytokinesis. While the outcome of cytokinesis is conserved in all dividing organisms, the mechanism of division varies across the major eukaryotic kingdoms. Yeasts and animals, for instance, use a contractile ring that ingresses to the cell middle in order to divide, while plant cells build new cell wall outward to the cortex. As would be expected, there is considerable conservation of molecules involved in cytokinesis between yeast and animal cells, while at first glance, plant cells seem quite different. However, in recent years, it has become clear that some aspects of division are conserved between plant, yeast, and animal cells. In this review we discuss the major recent advances in defining cytokinesis, focusing on deciding where to divide, building the division apparatus, and dividing. In addition, we discuss the complex problem of coordinating the division cycle with the nuclear cycle, which has recently become an area of intense research. In conclusion, we discuss how certain cells have utilized cytokinesis to direct development.

  4. Symbiosis and the origin of eukaryotic motility (United States)

    Margulis, L.; Hinkle, G.


    Ongoing work to test the hypothesis of the origin of eukaryotic cell organelles by microbial symbioses is discussed. Because of the widespread acceptance of the serial endosymbiotic theory (SET) of the origin of plastids and mitochondria, the idea of the symbiotic origin of the centrioles and axonemes for spirochete bacteria motility symbiosis was tested. Intracellular microtubular systems are purported to derive from symbiotic associations between ancestral eukaryotic cells and motile bacteria. Four lines of approach to this problem are being pursued: (1) cloning the gene of a tubulin-like protein discovered in Spirocheata bajacaliforniesis; (2) seeking axoneme proteins in spirochets by antibody cross-reaction; (3) attempting to cultivate larger, free-living spirochetes; and (4) studying in detail spirochetes (e.g., Cristispira) symbiotic with marine animals. Other aspects of the investigation are presented.

  5. Evolution of eukaryotic single-stranded DNA viruses of the Bidnaviridae family from genes of four other groups of widely different viruses (United States)

    Krupovic, Mart; Koonin, Eugene V.


    Single-stranded (ss)DNA viruses are extremely widespread, infect diverse hosts from all three domains of life and include important pathogens. Most ssDNA viruses possess small genomes that replicate by the rolling-circle-like mechanism initiated by a distinct virus-encoded endonuclease. However, viruses of the family Bidnaviridae, instead of the endonuclease, encode a protein-primed type B DNA polymerase (PolB) and hence break this pattern. We investigated the provenance of all bidnavirus genes and uncover an unexpected turbulent evolutionary history of these unique viruses. Our analysis strongly suggests that bidnaviruses evolved from a parvovirus ancestor from which they inherit a jelly-roll capsid protein and a superfamily 3 helicase. The radiation of bidnaviruses from parvoviruses was probably triggered by integration of the ancestral parvovirus genome into a large virus-derived DNA transposon of the Polinton (polintovirus) family resulting in the acquisition of the polintovirus PolB gene along with terminal inverted repeats. Bidnavirus genes for a receptor-binding protein and a potential novel antiviral defense modulator are derived from dsRNA viruses (Reoviridae) and dsDNA viruses (Baculoviridae), respectively. The unusual evolutionary history of bidnaviruses emphasizes the key role of horizontal gene transfer, sometimes between viruses with completely different genomes but occupying the same niche, in the emergence of new viral types.

  6. Analysis of the role of the LH92_11085 gene of a biofilm hyper-producing Acinetobacter baumannii strain on biofilm formation and attachment to eukaryotic cells. (United States)

    Álvarez-Fraga, Laura; Pérez, Astrid; Rumbo-Feal, Soraya; Merino, María; Vallejo, Juan Andrés; Ohneck, Emily J; Edelmann, Richard E; Beceiro, Alejandro; Vázquez-Ucha, Juan C; Valle, Jaione; Actis, Luis A; Bou, Germán; Poza, Margarita


    Acinetobacter baumannii is a nosocomial pathogen that has a considerable ability to survive in the hospital environment partly due to its capacity to form biofilms. The first step in the process of establishing an infection is adherence of the bacteria to target cells. Chaperone-usher pili assembly systems are involved in pilus biogenesis pathways that play an important role in adhesion to host cells and tissues as well as medically relevant surfaces. After screening a collection of strains, a biofilm hyper-producing A. baumannii strain (MAR002) was selected to describe potential targets involved in pathogenicity. MAR002 showed a remarkable ability to form biofilm and attach to A549 human alveolar epithelial cells. Analysis of MAR002 using transmission electron microscopy (TEM) showed a significant presence of pili on the bacterial surface. Putative protein-coding genes involved in pili formation were identified based on the newly sequenced genome of MAR002 strain (JRHB01000001/2 or NZ_JRHB01000001/2). As assessed by qRT-PCR, the gene LH92_11085, belonging to the operon LH92_11070-11085, is overexpressed (ca. 25-fold more) in biofilm-associated cells compared to exponential planktonic cells. In the present work we investigate the role of this gene on the MAR002 biofilm phenotype. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and biofilm assays showed that inactivation of LH92_11085 gene significantly reduced bacterial attachment to A549 cells and biofilm formation on plastic, respectively. TEM analysis of the LH92_11085 mutant showed the absence of long pili formations normally present in the wild-type. These observations indicate the potential role this LH92_11085 gene could play in the pathobiology of A baumannii.

  7. Structure of the archaeal Kae1/Bud32 fusion protein MJ1130: a model for the eukaryotic EKC/KEOPS subcomplex. (United States)

    Hecker, Arnaud; Lopreiato, Raffaele; Graille, Marc; Collinet, Bruno; Forterre, Patrick; Libri, Domenico; van Tilbeurgh, Herman


    The EKC/KEOPS yeast complex is involved in telomere maintenance and transcription. The Bud32p and kinase-associated endopeptidase 1 (Kaelp) components of the complex are totally conserved in eukarya and archaea. Their genes are fused in several archaeal genomes, suggesting that they physically interact. We report here the structure of the Methanocaldococcus jannaschii Kae1/Bud32 fusion protein MJ1130. Kae1 is an iron protein with an ASKHA fold and Bud32 is an atypical small RIO-type kinase. The structure MJ1130 suggests that association with Kae1 maintains the Bud32 kinase in an inactive state. We indeed show that yeast Kae1p represses the kinase activity of yeast Bud32p. Extensive conserved interactions between MjKae1 and MjBud32 suggest that Kae1p and Bud32p directly interact in both yeast and archaea. Mutations that disrupt the Kae1p/Bud32p interaction in the context of the yeast complex have dramatic effects in vivo and in vitro, similar to those observed with deletion mutations of the respective components. Direct interaction between Kae1p and Bud32p in yeast is required both for the transcription and the telomere homeostasis function of EKC/KEOPS.

  8. Molecular paleontology and complexity in the last eukaryotic common ancestor. (United States)

    Koumandou, V Lila; Wickstead, Bill; Ginger, Michael L; van der Giezen, Mark; Dacks, Joel B; Field, Mark C


    Eukaryogenesis, the origin of the eukaryotic cell, represents one of the fundamental evolutionary transitions in the history of life on earth. This event, which is estimated to have occurred over one billion years ago, remains rather poorly understood. While some well-validated examples of fossil microbial eukaryotes for this time frame have been described, these can provide only basic morphology and the molecular machinery present in these organisms has remained unknown. Complete and partial genomic information has begun to fill this gap, and is being used to trace proteins and cellular traits to their roots and to provide unprecedented levels of resolution of structures, metabolic pathways and capabilities of organisms at these earliest points within the eukaryotic lineage. This is essentially allowing a molecular paleontology. What has emerged from these studies is spectacular cellular complexity prior to expansion of the eukaryotic lineages. Multiple reconstructed cellular systems indicate a very sophisticated biology, which by implication arose following the initial eukaryogenesis event but prior to eukaryotic radiation and provides a challenge in terms of explaining how these early eukaryotes arose and in understanding how they lived. Here, we provide brief overviews of several cellular systems and the major emerging conclusions, together with predictions for subsequent directions in evolution leading to extant taxa. We also consider what these reconstructions suggest about the life styles and capabilities of these earliest eukaryotes and the period of evolution between the radiation of eukaryotes and the eukaryogenesis event itself.

  9. Structural analysis of the α subunit of Na(+)/K(+) ATPase genes in invertebrates. (United States)

    Thabet, Rahma; Rouault, J-D; Ayadi, Habib; Leignel, Vincent


    The Na(+)/K(+) ATPase is a ubiquitous pump coordinating the transport of Na(+) and K(+) across the membrane of cells and its role is fundamental to cellular functions. It is heteromer in eukaryotes including two or three subunits (α, β and γ which is specific to the vertebrates). The catalytic functions of the enzyme have been attributed to the α subunit. Several complete α protein sequences are available, but only few gene structures were characterized. We identified the genomic sequences coding the α-subunit of the Na(+)/K(+) ATPase, from the whole-genome shotgun contigs (WGS), NCBI Genomes (chromosome), Genomic Survey Sequences (GSS) and High Throughput Genomic Sequences (HTGS) databases across distinct phyla. One copy of the α subunit gene was found in Annelida, Arthropoda, Cnidaria, Echinodermata, Hemichordata, Mollusca, Placozoa, Porifera, Platyhelminthes, Urochordata, but the nematodes seem to possess 2 to 4 copies. The number of introns varied from 0 (Platyhelminthes) to 26 (Porifera); and their localization and length are also highly variable. Molecular phylogenies (Maximum Likelihood and Maximum Parsimony methods) showed some clusters constituted by (Chordata/(Echinodermata/Hemichordata)) or (Plathelminthes/(Annelida/Mollusca)) and a basal position for Porifera. These structural analyses increase our knowledge about the evolutionary events of the α subunit genes in the invertebrates. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristian Campeanu


    Full Text Available Identified short time after the discovery of cells, over 300 years ago, the cell nucleus of eukaryotes continuously focused the interest of scientists, which used increasingly sophisticated research tools to clarify its complex structure and functions. The results of all these studies, especially those carried out in the second half of the past century, proved and confirmed that the eukaryotic cell nucleus is the control center of all cellular activities and also ensures the continuity of genetic information along successive generations of cells. These vital functions are the result of selective expression of genes contained in the nuclear chromatin, which is a high ordered and dynamic structure, in permanent and bilateral relations with other nuclear components. Based on these considerations, the present review aims to synthetize the latest researches and concepts about the cell nuclear territory in three distinctive parts, according to the complexity of the topic

  11. A eukaryotic-acquired gene by a biotrophic phytopathogen allows prolonged survival on the host by counteracting the shut-down of plant photosynthesis

    KAUST Repository

    Garavaglia, Betiana S.


    Xanthomonas citri pv. citri, the bacteria responsible for citrus canker posses a biological active plant natriuretic peptide (PNP)-like protein, not present in any other bacteria. PNPs are a class of extracellular, systemically mobile peptides that elicit a number of plant responses important in homeostasis and growth. Previously, we showed that a Xanthomonas citri pv. citri mutant lacking the PNP-like protein XacPNP produced more necrotic lesions in citrus leaves than wild type infections and suggested a role for XacPNP in the regulation of host homeostasis. Here we have analyzed the proteome modifications observed in citrus leaves infected with the wild type and XacPNP deletion mutant bacteria. While both of them cause downregulation of enzymes related to photosynthesis as well as chloroplastic ribosomal proteins, proteins related to defense responses are up-regulated. However, leaves infiltrated with the XacPNP deletion mutant show a more pronounced decrease in photosynthetic proteins while no reduction in defense related proteins as compared to the wild-type pathogen. This suggests that XacPNP serves the pathogen to maintain host photosynthetic efficiency during pathogenesis. The results from the proteomics analyses are consistent with our chlorophyll fluorescence data and transcript analyses of defense genes that show a more marked reduction in photosynthesis in the mutant but no difference in the induction of genes diagnostic for biotic-stress responses. We therefore conclude that XacPNP counteracts the shut-down of host photosynthesis during infection and in that way maintains the tissue in better conditions, suggesting that the pathogen has adapted a host gene to modify its natural host and render it a better reservoir for prolonged bacterial survival and thus for further colonization. 2010 Garavaglia et al.

  12. The Eukaryotic Promoter Database (EPD)


    Perier, R. C.; Praz, V; Junier, T; Bonnard, C.; Bucher, P


    The Eukaryotic Promoter Database (EPD) is an annotated non-redundant collection of eukaryotic POL II promoters for which the transcription start site has been determined experimentally. Access to promoter sequences is provided by pointers to positions in nucleotide sequence entries. The annotation part of an entry includes a description of the initiation site mapping data, exhaustive cross-references to the EMBL nucleotide sequence database, SWISS-PROT, TRANSFAC and other databases, as well a...

  13. Chromatin structure of ribosomal RNA genes in dipterans and its relationship to the location of nucleolar organizers.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christiane Rodriguez Gutierrez Madalena

    Full Text Available Nucleoli, nuclear organelles in which ribosomal RNA is synthesized and processed, emerge from nucleolar organizers (NORs located in distinct chromosomal regions. In polytene nuclei of dipterans, nucleoli of some species can be observed under light microscopy exhibiting distinctive morphology: Drosophila and chironomid species display well-formed nucleoli in contrast to the fragmented and dispersed nucleoli seen in sciarid flies. The available data show no apparent relationship between nucleolar morphology and location of NORs in Diptera. The regulation of rRNA transcription involves controlling both the transcription rate per gene as well as the proportion of rRNA genes adopting a proper chromatin structure for transcription, since active and inactive rRNA gene copies coexist in NORs. Transcription units organized in nucleosomes and those lacking canonical nucleosomes can be analyzed by the method termed psoralen gel retarding assay (PGRA, allowing inferences on the ratio of active to inactive rRNA gene copies. In this work, possible connections between chromosomal location of NORs and proportion of active rRNA genes were studied in Drosophila melanogaster, and in chironomid and sciarid species. The data suggested a link between location of NORs and proportion of active rRNA genes since the copy number showing nucleosomal organization predominates when NORs are located in the pericentric heterochromatin. The results presented in this work are in agreement with previous data on the chromatin structure of rRNA genes from distantly related eukaryotes, as assessed by the PGRA.

  14. Covariance Structure Models for Gene Expression Microarray Data (United States)

    Xie, Jun; Bentler, Peter M.


    Covariance structure models are applied to gene expression data using a factor model, a path model, and their combination. The factor model is based on a few factors that capture most of the expression information. A common factor of a group of genes may represent a common protein factor for the transcript of the co-expressed genes, and hence, it…

  15. Expression screening, protein purification and NMR analysis of human protein domains for structural genomics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Folkers, G.E.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/162277202; van Buuren, B.N.M.; Kaptein, R.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/074334603


    Structural genomics, the determination of protein structures on a genome-wide scale, is still in its infancy for eukaryotes due to the number and size of their genes. Low protein expression and solubility of eukaryotic geneproducts are the major bottlenecks in high-throughput (HTP) recombinant

  16. Bio-molecular architects: a scaffold provided by the C-terminal domain of eukaryotic RNA polymerase II. (United States)

    Zhang, Mengmeng; Gill, Gordon N; Zhang, Yan


    In eukaryotic cells, the transcription of genes is accurately orchestrated both spatially and temporally by the C-terminal domain of RNA polymerase II (CTD). The CTD provides a dynamic platform to recruit different regulators of the transcription apparatus. Different posttranslational modifications are precisely applied to specific sites of the CTD to coordinate transcription process. Regulators of the RNA polymerase II must identify specific sites in the CTD for cellular survival, metabolism, and development. Even though the CTD is disordered in the eukaryotic RNA polymerase II crystal structures due to its intrinsic flexibility, recent advances in the complex structural analysis of the CTD with its binding partners provide essential clues for understanding how selectivity is achieved for individual site recognition. The recent discoveries of the interactions between the CTD and histone modification enzymes disclose an important role of the CTD in epigenetic control of the eukaryotic gene expression. The intersection of the CTD code with the histone code discloses an intriguing yet complicated network for eukaryotic transcriptional regulation.

  17. Bio-molecular architects: a scaffold provided by the C-terminal domain of eukaryotic RNA polymerase II

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan Zhang


    Full Text Available In eukaryotic cells, the transcription of genes is accurately orchestrated both spatially and temporally by the C-terminal domain of RNA polymerase II (CTD. The CTD provides a dynamic platform to recruit different regulators of the transcription apparatus. Different posttranslational modifications are precisely applied to specific sites of the CTD to coordinate transcription process. Regulators of the RNA polymerase II must identify specific sites in the CTD for cellular survival, metabolism, and development. Even though the CTD is disordered in the eukaryotic RNA polymerase II crystal structures due to its intrinsic flexibility, recent advances in the complex structural analysis of the CTD with its binding partners provide essential clues for understanding how selectivity is achieved for individual site recognition. The recent discoveries of the interactions between the CTD and histone modification enzymes disclose an important role of the CTD in epigenetic control of the eukaryotic gene expression. The intersection of the CTD code with the histone code discloses an intriguing yet complicated network for eukaryotic transcriptional regulation.

  18. Towards New Antifolates Targeting Eukaryotic Opportunistic Infections

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, J.; Bolstad, D; Bolstad, E; Wright, D; Anderson, A


    Trimethoprim, an antifolate commonly prescribed in combination with sulfamethoxazole, potently inhibits several prokaryotic species of dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR). However, several eukaryotic pathogenic organisms are resistant to trimethoprim, preventing its effective use as a therapeutic for those infections. We have been building a program to reengineer trimethoprim to more potently and selectively inhibit eukaryotic species of DHFR as a viable strategy for new drug discovery targeting several opportunistic pathogens. We have developed a series of compounds that exhibit potent and selective inhibition of DHFR from the parasitic protozoa Cryptosporidium and Toxoplasma as well as the fungus Candida glabrata. A comparison of the structures of DHFR from the fungal species Candida glabrata and Pneumocystis suggests that the compounds may also potently inhibit Pneumocystis DHFR.

  19. The Eukaryotic Promoter Database (EPD): recent developments. (United States)

    Périer, R C; Junier, T; Bonnard, C; Bucher, P


    The Eukaryotic Promoter Database (EPD) is an annotated non-redundant collection of eukaryotic POL II promoters, for which the transcription start site has been determined experimentally. Access to promoter sequences is provided by pointers to positions in nucleotide sequence entries. The annotation part of an entry includes description of the initiation site mapping data, cross-references to other databases, and bibliographic references. EPD is structured in a way that facilitates dynamic extraction of biologically meaningful promoter subsets for comparative sequence analysis. Recent efforts have focused on exhaustive cross-referencing to the EMBL nucleotide sequence database, and on the improvement of the WWW-based user interfaces and data retrieval mechanisms. EPD can be accessed at

  20. Soil eukaryotic functional diversity, a metatranscriptomic approach. (United States)

    Bailly, Julie; Fraissinet-Tachet, Laurence; Verner, Marie-Christine; Debaud, Jean-Claude; Lemaire, Marc; Wésolowski-Louvel, Micheline; Marmeisse, Roland


    To appreciate the functional diversity of communities of soil eukaryotic micro-organisms we evaluated an experimental approach based on the construction and screening of a cDNA library using polyadenylated mRNA extracted from a forest soil. Such a library contains genes that are expressed by each of the different organisms forming the community and represents its metatranscriptome. The diversity of the organisms that contributed to this library was evaluated by sequencing a portion of the 18S rDNA gene amplified from either soil DNA or reverse-transcribed RNA. More than 70% of the sequences were from fungi and unicellular eukaryotes (protists) while the other most represented group was the metazoa. Calculation of richness estimators suggested that more than 180 species could be present in the soil samples studied. Sequencing of 119 cDNA identified genes with no homologues in databases (32%) and genes coding proteins involved in different biochemical and cellular processes. Surprisingly, the taxonomic distribution of the cDNA and of the 18S rDNA genes did not coincide, with a marked under-representation of the protists among the cDNA. Specific genes from such an environmental cDNA library could be isolated by expression in a heterologous microbial host, Saccharomyces cerevisiae. This is illustrated by the functional complementation of a histidine auxotrophic yeast mutant by two cDNA originating possibly from an ascomycete and a basidiomycete fungal species. Study of the metatranscriptome has the potential to uncover adaptations of whole microbial communities to local environmental conditions. It also gives access to an abundant source of genes of biotechnological interest.

  1. Evolutionary and Topological Properties of Genes and Community Structures in Human Gene Regulatory Networks. (United States)

    Szedlak, Anthony; Smith, Nicholas; Liu, Li; Paternostro, Giovanni; Piermarocchi, Carlo


    The diverse, specialized genes present in today's lifeforms evolved from a common core of ancient, elementary genes. However, these genes did not evolve individually: gene expression is controlled by a complex network of interactions, and alterations in one gene may drive reciprocal changes in its proteins' binding partners. Like many complex networks, these gene regulatory networks (GRNs) are composed of communities, or clusters of genes with relatively high connectivity. A deep understanding of the relationship between the evolutionary history of single genes and the topological properties of the underlying GRN is integral to evolutionary genetics. Here, we show that the topological properties of an acute myeloid leukemia GRN and a general human GRN are strongly coupled with its genes' evolutionary properties. Slowly evolving ("cold"), old genes tend to interact with each other, as do rapidly evolving ("hot"), young genes. This naturally causes genes to segregate into community structures with relatively homogeneous evolutionary histories. We argue that gene duplication placed old, cold genes and communities at the center of the networks, and young, hot genes and communities at the periphery. We demonstrate this with single-node centrality measures and two new measures of efficiency, the set efficiency and the interset efficiency. We conclude that these methods for studying the relationships between a GRN's community structures and its genes' evolutionary properties provide new perspectives for understanding evolutionary genetics.

  2. A common multiple cloning site in a set of vectors for expression of eukaryotic genes in mammalian, insect and bacterial cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pallisgaard, N; Pedersen, FS; Birkelund, Svend


    Here, we describe the construction of plasmid vectors facilitating expression of cloned genes in bacteria and in cells of mammalian and insect origin. Two types of multiple cloning site (MCS) were designed based on the MCS in the expression vector lambda gt11Sfi-Not. In the first set of vectors...... a start Met codon was included in the same reading frame as in lambda gt11Sfi-Not to support expression of partial cDNA clones. Thus a cDNA insert of lambda gt11Sfi-Not could be shuttled among the new vectors for expression. The other set of vectors without a start codon were suitable for expression of cDNA...... carrying their own start Met codon. By Western blot analysis and by transactivation of a reporter plasmid in co-transfections we show that cDNA is very efficiently expressed in NIH 3T3 cells under control of the elongation factor 1 alpha promoter....

  3. Expression of eukaryotic polypeptides in chloroplasts (United States)

    Mayfield, Stephen P.


    The present invention relates to a gene expression system in eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells, preferably plant cells and intact plants. In particular, the invention relates to an expression system having a RB47 binding site upstream of a translation initiation site for regulation of translation mediated by binding of RB47 protein, a member of the poly(A) binding protein family. Regulation is further effected by RB60, a protein disulfide isomerase. The expression system is capable of functioning in the nuclear/cytoplasm of cells and in the chloroplast of plants. Translation regulation of a desired molecule is enhanced approximately 100 fold over that obtained without RB47 binding site activation.

  4. Mechanisms of Evolutionary Innovation Point to Genetic Control Logic as the Key Difference Between Prokaryotes and Eukaryotes. (United States)

    Bains, William; Schulze-Makuch, Dirk


    The evolution of life from the simplest, original form to complex, intelligent animal life occurred through a number of key innovations. Here we present a new tool to analyze these key innovations by proposing that the process of evolutionary innovation may follow one of three underlying processes, namely a Random Walk, a Critical Path, or a Many Paths process, and in some instances may also constitute a "Pull-up the Ladder" event. Our analysis is based on the occurrence of function in modern biology, rather than specific structure or mechanism. A function in modern biology may be classified in this way either on the basis of its evolution or the basis of its modern mechanism. Characterizing key innovations in this way helps identify the likelihood that an innovation could arise. In this paper, we describe the classification, and methods to classify functional features of modern organisms into these three classes based on the analysis of how a function is implemented in modern biology. We present the application of our categorization to the evolution of eukaryotic gene control. We use this approach to support the argument that there are few, and possibly no basic chemical differences between the functional constituents of the machinery of gene control between eukaryotes, bacteria and archaea. This suggests that the difference between eukaryotes and prokaryotes that allows the former to develop the complex genetic architecture seen in animals and plants is something other than their chemistry. We tentatively identify the difference as a difference in control logic, that prokaryotic genes are by default 'on' and eukaryotic genes are by default 'off.' The Many Paths evolutionary process suggests that, from a 'default off' starting point, the evolution of the genetic complexity of higher eukaryotes is a high probability event.

  5. Conservation and Variability of Meiosis Across the Eukaryotes. (United States)

    Loidl, Josef


    Comparisons among a variety of eukaryotes have revealed considerable variability in the structures and processes involved in their meiosis. Nevertheless, conventional forms of meiosis occur in all major groups of eukaryotes, including early-branching protists. This finding confirms that meiosis originated in the common ancestor of all eukaryotes and suggests that primordial meiosis may have had many characteristics in common with conventional extant meiosis. However, it is possible that the synaptonemal complex and the delicate crossover control related to its presence were later acquisitions. Later still, modifications to meiotic processes occurred within different groups of eukaryotes. Better knowledge on the spectrum of derived and uncommon forms of meiosis will improve our understanding of many still mysterious aspects of the meiotic process and help to explain the evolutionary basis of functional adaptations to the meiotic program.

  6. Eukaryotic organisms in Proterozoic oceans. (United States)

    Knoll, A H; Javaux, E J; Hewitt, D; Cohen, P


    The geological record of protists begins well before the Ediacaran and Cambrian diversification of animals, but the antiquity of that history, its reliability as a chronicle of evolution and the causal inferences that can be drawn from it remain subjects of debate. Well-preserved protists are known from a relatively small number of Proterozoic formations, but taphonomic considerations suggest that they capture at least broad aspects of early eukaryotic evolution. A modest diversity of problematic, possibly stem group protists occurs in ca 1800-1300 Myr old rocks. 1300-720 Myr fossils document the divergence of major eukaryotic clades, but only with the Ediacaran-Cambrian radiation of animals did diversity increase within most clades with fossilizable members. While taxonomic placement of many Proterozoic eukaryotes may be arguable, the presence of characters used for that placement is not. Focus on character evolution permits inferences about the innovations in cell biology and development that underpin the taxonomic and morphological diversification of eukaryotic organisms.

  7. Eukaryotic vs. cyanobacterial oxygenic photosynthesis


    Schmelling, Nicolas


    Slides of my talk about the differences between eukaryotic and cyanobacterial oxygenic photosynthesis.  The talk is a more generell overview about the differences of the two systems. Slides and Figures are my own. For comments, questions and suggestions please contact me via twitter @derschmelling or via mail

  8. Posttranscriptional mechanisms in controlling eukaryotic circadian rhythms. (United States)

    Zhang, Lin; Weng, Wenya; Guo, Jinhu


    The circadian clock is essential in almost all living organisms to synchronise biochemical, metabolic, physiological and behavioural cycles to daily changing environmental factors. In a highly conserved fashion, the circadian clock is primarily controlled by multiple positive and negative molecular circuitries that control gene expression. More recently, research in Neurospora and other eukaryotes has uncovered the involvement of additional regulatory components that operate at the posttranslational level to fine tune the circadian system. Though it remains poorly understood, a growing body of evidence has shown that posttranscriptional regulation controls the expression of both circadian oscillator and output gene transcripts at a number of different steps. This regulation is crucial for driving and maintaining robust circadian rhythms. Here we review recent advances in circadian rhythm research at the RNA level. Copyright © 2011 Federation of European Biochemical Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Origin and evolution of the self-organizing cytoskeleton in the network of eukaryotic organelles. (United States)

    Jékely, Gáspár


    The eukaryotic cytoskeleton evolved from prokaryotic cytomotive filaments. Prokaryotic filament systems show bewildering structural and dynamic complexity and, in many aspects, prefigure the self-organizing properties of the eukaryotic cytoskeleton. Here, the dynamic properties of the prokaryotic and eukaryotic cytoskeleton are compared, and how these relate to function and evolution of organellar networks is discussed. The evolution of new aspects of filament dynamics in eukaryotes, including severing and branching, and the advent of molecular motors converted the eukaryotic cytoskeleton into a self-organizing "active gel," the dynamics of which can only be described with computational models. Advances in modeling and comparative genomics hold promise of a better understanding of the evolution of the self-organizing cytoskeleton in early eukaryotes, and its role in the evolution of novel eukaryotic functions, such as amoeboid motility, mitosis, and ciliary swimming. Copyright © 2014 Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press; all rights reserved.

  10. Comparative genomics of the relationship between gene structure and expression

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ren, X.


    The relationship between the structure of genes and their expression is a relatively new aspect of genome organization and regulation. With more genome sequences and expression data becoming available, bioinformatics approaches can help the further elucidation of the relationships between gene

  11. Structural modelling and phylogenetic analyses of PgeIF4A2 (Eukaryotic translation initiation factor) from Pennisetum glaucum reveal signature motifs with a role in stress tolerance and development. (United States)

    Agarwal, Aakrati; Mudgil, Yashwanti; Pandey, Saurabh; Fartyal, Dhirendra; Reddy, Malireddy K


    Eukaryotic translation initiation factor 4A (eIF4A) is an indispensable component of the translation machinery and also play a role in developmental processes and stress alleviation in plants and animals. Different eIF4A isoforms are present in the cytosol of the cell, namely, eIF4A1, eIF4A2, and eIF4A3 and their expression is tightly regulated in cap-dependent translation. We revealed the structural model of PgeIF4A2 protein using the crystal structure of Homo sapiens eIF4A3 (PDB ID: 2J0S) as template by Modeller 9.12. The resultant PgeIF4A2 model structure was refined by PROCHECK, ProSA, Verify3D and RMSD that showed the model structure is reliable with 77 % amino acid sequence identity with template. Investigation revealed two conserved signatures for ATP-dependent RNA Helicase DEAD-box conserved site (VLDEADEML) and RNA helicase DEAD-box type, Q-motif in sheet-turn-helix and α-helical region respectively. All these conserved motifs are responsible for response during developmental stages and stress tolerance in plants.

  12. Structure of the human lysyl oxidase gene

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Haemaelaeinen, E.R.; Kemppainen, R.; Pihlajaniemi, T.; Kivirikko, K.I. (Univ. of Oulu (Finland))


    Lysyl oxidase (EC, an extracellular copper enzyme, initiates the crosslinking of collagens and elastin by catalyzing oxidative deamination of the [epsilon]-amino group in certain lysine and hydroxylysine residues. The authors report here that the human lysyl oxidase gene is about 15 kb in size and consists of seven exons. Transcription is initiated at one major site and four minor sites, and the first exon consists of 273 bp of untranslated sequences (calculated to the major site) and 631 bp of translated sequences, which accounts for about half of all the translated sequences of the gene. The seventh exon, on the other hand, codes for only the last codon of amino acid 416 and for amino acid 417, which are followed by the translation termination codon and the 3[prime] untranslated sequences. Exons 2-6 vary in size from 96to157 bp, and the introns from 331 bp to about 3.5 kb. The 5[prime] flanking region contains a TATA-like sequence at -30 relative to the major transcription initiation site and a CCAAT motif at -109. The 5[prime] flanking region and the downstream sequences present in the first exon and first intron contain altogether five possible binding sequences for Sp1, six for AP-2, one for AP-1, three of PEA3, three for MEP-1, and three CCCTCCC motifs, all of which may be involved in the regulation of the expression of the gene. 25 refs., 4 figs., 1 tab.

  13. Design and chemical synthesis of eukaryotic chromosomes. (United States)

    Xie, Ze-Xiong; Liu, Duo; Li, Bing-Zhi; Zhao, Meng; Zeng, Bo-Xuan; Wu, Yi; Shen, Yue; Lin, Tao; Yang, Ping; Dai, Junbiao; Cai, Yizhi; Yang, Huanming; Yuan, Ying-Jin


    Following the discovery of the DNA double helix structure and the advancement of genome sequencing, we have entered a promising stage with regard to genome writing. Recently, a milestone breakthrough was achieved in the chemical synthesis of designer yeast chromosomes. Here, we review the systematic approaches to the de novo synthesis of designer eukaryotic chromosomes, with an emphasis on technologies and methodologies that enable design, building, testing and debugging. The achievement of chemically synthesized genomes with customized genetic features offers an opportunity to rebuild genome organization, remold biological functions and promote life evolution, which will be of great benefit for application in medicine and industrial manufacturing.

  14. Genomic and experimental evidence suggests that Verrucomicrobium spinosum interacts with eukaryotes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michelle eSait


    Full Text Available Our knowledge of pathogens and symbionts is heavily biased towards phyla containing species that are straightforward to isolate in pure culture. Novel bacterial phyla are often represented by a handful of strains, and the number of species interacting with eukaryotes is likely underestimated. Identification of predicted pathogenesis and symbiosis determinants such as the Type III Secretion System (T3SS in the genomes of ‘free-living’ bacteria suggests that these microbes participate in uncharacterized interactions with eukaryotes. Our study aimed to test this hypothesis on Verrucomicrobium spinosum (phylum Verrucomicrobia and to begin characterization of its predicted T3SS. We showed the putative T3SS structural genes to be transcriptionally active, and that expression of predicted effector proteins was toxic to yeast in an established functional screen. Our results suggest that the predicted T3SS genes of V. spinosum could encode a functional T3SS, although further work is needed to determine whether V. spinosum produces a T3SS injectisome that delivers the predicted effectors. In the absence of a known eukaryotic host, we made use of invertebrate infection models. The injection or feeding of V. spinosum to Drosophila melanogaster and Caenorhabiditis elegans, respectively, was shown to result in increased mortality rates relative to controls, a phenomenon exaggerated in C. elegans mutants hypersensitive to pathogen infection. This finding, although not conclusively demonstrating pathogenesis, suggests that V. spinosum is capable of pathogenic activity towards an invertebrate host. Symbiotic interactions with a natural host provide an alternative explanation for the results seen in the invertebrate models. Further work is needed to determine whether V. spinosum can establish and maintain interactions with eukaryotic species found in its natural habitat, and whether the predicted T3SS is directly involved in pathogenic or symbiotic activity.

  15. Unicellular eukaryotes as models in cell and molecular biology: critical appraisal of their past and future value. (United States)

    Simon, Martin; Plattner, Helmut


    Unicellular eukaryotes have been appreciated as model systems for the analysis of crucial questions in cell and molecular biology. This includes Dictyostelium (chemotaxis, amoeboid movement, phagocytosis), Tetrahymena (telomere structure, telomerase function), Paramecium (variant surface antigens, exocytosis, phagocytosis cycle) or both ciliates (ciliary beat regulation, surface pattern formation), Chlamydomonas (flagellar biogenesis and beat), and yeast (S. cerevisiae) for innumerable aspects. Nowadays many problems may be tackled with "higher" eukaryotic/metazoan cells for which full genomic information as well as domain databases, etc., were available long before protozoa. Established molecular tools, commercial antibodies, and established pharmacology are additional advantages available for higher eukaryotic cells. Moreover, an increasing number of inherited genetic disturbances in humans have become elucidated and can serve as new models. Among lower eukaryotes, yeast will remain a standard model because of its peculiarities, including its reduced genome and availability in the haploid form. But do protists still have a future as models? This touches not only the basic understanding of biology but also practical aspects of research, such as fund raising. As we try to scrutinize, due to specific advantages some protozoa should and will remain favorable models for analyzing novel genes or specific aspects of cell structure and function. Outstanding examples are epigenetic phenomena-a field of rising interest. © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Modeling Three-Dimensional Chromosome Structures Using Gene Expression Data. (United States)

    Xiao, Guanghua; Wang, Xinlei; Khodursky, Arkady B


    Recent genomic studies have shown that significant chromosomal spatial correlation exists in gene expression of many organisms. Interestingly, coexpression has been observed among genes separated by a fixed interval in specific regions of a chromosome chain, which is likely caused by three-dimensional (3D) chromosome folding structures. Modeling such spatial correlation explicitly may lead to essential understandings of 3D chromosome structures and their roles in transcriptional regulation. In this paper, we explore chromosomal spatial correlation induced by 3D chromosome structures, and propose a hierarchical Bayesian method based on helical structures to formally model and incorporate the correlation into the analysis of gene expression microarray data. It is the first study to quantify and infer 3D chromosome structures in vivo using expression microarrays. Simulation studies show computing feasibility of the proposed method and that, under the assumption of helical chromosome structures, it can lead to precise estimation of structural parameters and gene expression levels. Real data applications demonstrate an intriguing biological phenomenon that functionally associated genes, which are far apart along the chromosome chain, are brought into physical proximity by chromosomal folding in 3D space to facilitate their coexpression. It leads to important biological insight into relationship between chromosome structure and function.

  17. Horizontal DNA transfer from bacteria to eukaryotes and a lesson from experimental transfers. (United States)

    Suzuki, Katsunori; Moriguchi, Kazuki; Yamamoto, Shinji


    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is widespread among bacteria and plays a key role in genome dynamics. HGT is much less common in eukaryotes, but is being reported with increasing frequency in eukaryotes. The mechanism as to how eukaryotes acquired genes from distantly related organisms remains obscure yet. This paper cites examples of bacteria-derived genes found in eukaryotic organisms, and then describes experimental DNA transports to eukaryotes by bacterial type 4 secretion systems in optimized conditions. The mechanisms of the latter are efficient, quite reproducible in vitro and predictable, and thereby would provide insight into natural HGT and to the development of new research tools. Copyright © 2015 Institut Pasteur. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  18. Macronuclear genome structure of the ciliate Nyctotherus ovalis: Single-gene chromosomes and tiny introns

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Landweber Laura F


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Nyctotherus ovalis is a single-celled eukaryote that has hydrogen-producing mitochondria and lives in the hindgut of cockroaches. Like all members of the ciliate taxon, it has two types of nuclei, a micronucleus and a macronucleus. N. ovalis generates its macronuclear chromosomes by forming polytene chromosomes that subsequently develop into macronuclear chromosomes by DNA elimination and rearrangement. Results We examined the structure of these gene-sized macronuclear chromosomes in N. ovalis. We determined the telomeres, subtelomeric regions, UTRs, coding regions and introns by sequencing a large set of macronuclear DNA sequences (4,242 and cDNAs (5,484 and comparing them with each other. The telomeres consist of repeats CCC(AAAACCCCn, similar to those in spirotrichous ciliates such as Euplotes, Sterkiella (Oxytricha and Stylonychia. Per sequenced chromosome we found evidence for either a single protein-coding gene, a single tRNA, or the complete ribosomal RNAs cluster. Hence the chromosomes appear to encode single transcripts. In the short subtelomeric regions we identified a few overrepresented motifs that could be involved in gene regulation, but there is no consensus polyadenylation site. The introns are short (21–29 nucleotides, and a significant fraction (1/3 of the tiny introns is conserved in the distantly related ciliate Paramecium tetraurelia. As has been observed in P. tetraurelia, the N. ovalis introns tend to contain in-frame stop codons or have a length that is not dividable by three. This pattern causes premature termination of mRNA translation in the event of intron retention, and potentially degradation of unspliced mRNAs by the nonsense-mediated mRNA decay pathway. Conclusion The combination of short leaders, tiny introns and single genes leads to very minimal macronuclear chromosomes. The smallest we identified contained only 150 nucleotides.

  19. A statistical anomaly indicates symbiotic origins of eukaryotic membranes (United States)

    Bansal, Suneyna; Mittal, Aditya


    Compositional analyses of nucleic acids and proteins have shed light on possible origins of living cells. In this work, rigorous compositional analyses of ∼5000 plasma membrane lipid constituents of 273 species in the three life domains (archaea, eubacteria, and eukaryotes) revealed a remarkable statistical paradox, indicating symbiotic origins of eukaryotic cells involving eubacteria. For lipids common to plasma membranes of the three domains, the number of carbon atoms in eubacteria was found to be similar to that in eukaryotes. However, mutually exclusive subsets of same data show exactly the opposite—the number of carbon atoms in lipids of eukaryotes was higher than in eubacteria. This statistical paradox, called Simpson's paradox, was absent for lipids in archaea and for lipids not common to plasma membranes of the three domains. This indicates the presence of interaction(s) and/or association(s) in lipids forming plasma membranes of eubacteria and eukaryotes but not for those in archaea. Further inspection of membrane lipid structures affecting physicochemical properties of plasma membranes provides the first evidence (to our knowledge) on the symbiotic origins of eukaryotic cells based on the “third front” (i.e., lipids) in addition to the growing compositional data from nucleic acids and proteins. PMID:25631820

  20. Alternative DNA Damage Checkpoint Pathways in Eukaryotes

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Scott, Kenneth


    ... (checkpoint bypass pathway) genes that constitute this alterative checkpoint, to isolate the human counterparts of these genes, and to compare their structure and activity in normal and cancer tissues...

  1. [Integrons and resistance gene cassettes: structure and role against antimicrobials]. (United States)

    González, Gerardo; Mella, Sergio; Zemelman, Raúl; Bello, Helia; Domínguez, Mariana


    Bacteria have developed sophisticated and successful genetic mechanisms to evade the action of antimicrobials. Bacterial multiresistance has caused serious problems in the treatment of nosocomial infections. Integrons and gene cassettes are considered the main genetic elements in the evolution of plasmids and transposons that actively participate in the mobilization of genes, codifying different bacterial resistance mechanisms. This article reviews the historical and structural aspects of integrons and resistance gene cassettes and the presence of these structures in gram negative bacteria isolated from Chilean hospitals in the last ten years.

  2. A second pathway to degrade pyrimidine nucleic acid precursors in eukaryotes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Gorm; Bjornberg, Olof; Polakova, Silvia


    Pyrimidine bases are the central precursors for RNA and DNA, and their intracellular pools are determined by de novo, salvage and catabolic pathways. In eukaryotes, degradation of uracil has been believed to proceed only via the reduction to dihydrouracil. Using a yeast model, Saccharomyces kluyv...... of the eukaryotic or prokaryotic genes involved in pyrimidine degradation described to date....

  3. Eukaryotic TPP riboswitch regulation of alternative splicing involving long-distance base pairing. (United States)

    Li, Sanshu; Breaker, Ronald R


    Thiamin pyrophosphate (TPP) riboswitches are found in organisms from all three domains of life. Examples in bacteria commonly repress gene expression by terminating transcription or by blocking ribosome binding, whereas most eukaryotic TPP riboswitches are predicted to regulate gene expression by modulating RNA splicing. Given the widespread distribution of eukaryotic TPP riboswitches and the diversity of their locations in precursor messenger RNAs (pre-mRNAs), we sought to examine the mechanism of alternative splicing regulation by a fungal TPP riboswitch from Neurospora crassa, which is mostly located in a large intron separating protein-coding exons. Our data reveal that this riboswitch uses a long-distance (∼530-nt separation) base-pairing interaction to regulate alternative splicing. Specifically, a portion of the TPP-binding aptamer can form a base-paired structure with a conserved sequence element (α) located near a 5' splice site, which greatly increases use of this 5' splice site and promotes gene expression. Comparative sequence analyses indicate that many fungal species carry a TPP riboswitch with similar intron architecture, and therefore the homologous genes in these fungi are likely to use the same mechanism. Our findings expand the scope of genetic control mechanisms relying on long-range RNA interactions to include riboswitches.

  4. A cobalt-containing eukaryotic nitrile hydratase. (United States)

    Martinez, Salette; Yang, Xinhang; Bennett, Brian; Holz, Richard C


    Nitrile hydratase (NHase), an industrially important enzyme that catalyzes the hydration of nitriles to their corresponding amides, has only been characterized from prokaryotic microbes. The putative NHase from the eukaryotic unicellular choanoflagellate organism Monosiga brevicollis (MbNHase) was heterologously expressed in Escherichia coli. The resulting enzyme expressed as a single polypeptide with fused α- and β-subunits linked by a seventeen-histidine region. Size-exclusion chromatography indicated that MbNHase exists primarily as an (αβ)2 homodimer in solution, analogous to the α2β2 homotetramer architecture observed for prokaryotic NHases. The NHase enzyme contained its full complement of Co(III) and was fully functional without the co-expression of an activator protein or E. coli GroES/EL molecular chaperones. The homology model of MbNHase was developed identifying Cys400, Cys403, and Cys405 as active site ligands. The results presented here provide the first experimental data for a mature and active eukaryotic NHase with fused subunits. Since this new member of the NHase family is expressed from a single gene without the requirement of an activator protein, it represents an alternative biocatalyst for industrial syntheses of important amide compounds. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Gonococcal attachment to eukaryotic cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    James, J.F.; Lammel, C.J.; Draper, D.L.; Brown, D.A.; Sweet, R.L.; Brooks, G.F.

    The attachment of Neisseria gonorrhoeae to eukaryotic cells grown in tissue culture was analyzed by use of light and electron microscopy and by labeling of the bacteria with (/sup 3/H)- and (/sup 14/C)adenine. Isogenic piliated and nonpiliated N. gonorrhoeae from opaque and transparent colonies were studied. The results of light microscopy studies showed that the gonococci attached to cells of human origin, including Flow 2000, HeLa 229, and HEp 2. Studies using radiolabeled gonococci gave comparable results. Piliated N. gonorrhoeae usually attached in larger numbers than nonpiliated organisms, and those from opaque colonies attached more often than isogenic variants from transparent colonies. Day-to-day variation in rate of attachment was observed. Scanning electron microscopy studies showed the gonococcal attachment to be specific for microvilli of the host cells. It is concluded that more N. gonorrhoeae from opaque colonies, as compared with isogenic variants from transparent colonies, attach to eukaryotic cells grown in tissue culture.

  6. DNA mismatch repair and its many roles in eukaryotic cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Liu, Dekang; Keijzers, Guido; Rasmussen, Lene Juel


    in the clinic, and as a biomarker of cancer susceptibility in animal model systems. Prokaryotic MMR is well-characterized at the molecular and mechanistic level; however, MMR is considerably more complex in eukaryotic cells than in prokaryotic cells, and in recent years, it has become evident that MMR plays......DNA mismatch repair (MMR) is an important DNA repair pathway that plays critical roles in DNA replication fidelity, mutation avoidance and genome stability, all of which contribute significantly to the viability of cells and organisms. MMR is widely-used as a diagnostic biomarker for human cancers...... novel roles in eukaryotic cells, several of which are not yet well-defined or understood. Many MMR-deficient human cancer cells lack mutations in known human MMR genes, which strongly suggests that essential eukaryotic MMR components/cofactors remain unidentified and uncharacterized. Furthermore...

  7. Consistent mutational paths predict eukaryotic thermostability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    van Noort Vera


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Proteomes of thermophilic prokaryotes have been instrumental in structural biology and successfully exploited in biotechnology, however many proteins required for eukaryotic cell function are absent from bacteria or archaea. With Chaetomium thermophilum, Thielavia terrestris and Thielavia heterothallica three genome sequences of thermophilic eukaryotes have been published. Results Studying the genomes and proteomes of these thermophilic fungi, we found common strategies of thermal adaptation across the different kingdoms of Life, including amino acid biases and a reduced genome size. A phylogenetics-guided comparison of thermophilic proteomes with those of other, mesophilic Sordariomycetes revealed consistent amino acid substitutions associated to thermophily that were also present in an independent lineage of thermophilic fungi. The most consistent pattern is the substitution of lysine by arginine, which we could find in almost all lineages but has not been extensively used in protein stability engineering. By exploiting mutational paths towards the thermophiles, we could predict particular amino acid residues in individual proteins that contribute to thermostability and validated some of them experimentally. By determining the three-dimensional structure of an exemplar protein from C. thermophilum (Arx1, we could also characterise the molecular consequences of some of these mutations. Conclusions The comparative analysis of these three genomes not only enhances our understanding of the evolution of thermophily, but also provides new ways to engineer protein stability.

  8. Dramatic shifts in benthic microbial eukaryote communities following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Holly M Bik

    Full Text Available Benthic habitats harbour a significant (yet unexplored diversity of microscopic eukaryote taxa, including metazoan phyla, protists, algae and fungi. These groups are thought to underpin ecosystem functioning across diverse marine environments. Coastal marine habitats in the Gulf of Mexico experienced visible, heavy impacts following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010, yet our scant knowledge of prior eukaryotic biodiversity has precluded a thorough assessment of this disturbance. Using a marker gene and morphological approach, we present an intensive evaluation of microbial eukaryote communities prior to and following oiling around heavily impacted shorelines. Our results show significant changes in community structure, with pre-spill assemblages of diverse Metazoa giving way to dominant fungal communities in post-spill sediments. Post-spill fungal taxa exhibit low richness and are characterized by an abundance of known hydrocarbon-degrading genera, compared to prior communities that contained smaller and more diverse fungal assemblages. Comparative taxonomic data from nematodes further suggests drastic impacts; while pre-spill samples exhibit high richness and evenness of genera, post-spill communities contain mainly predatory and scavenger taxa alongside an abundance of juveniles. Based on this community analysis, our data suggest considerable (hidden initial impacts across Gulf beaches may be ongoing, despite the disappearance of visible surface oil in the region.

  9. Higher order structure in the 3'-minor domain of small subunit ribosomal RNAs from a gram negative bacterium, a gram positive bacterium and a eukaryote

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Douthwaite, S; Christensen, A; Garrett, R A


    An experimental approach was used to determine and compare the highest order structure within the 150 to 200 nucleotides at the 3'-ends of the RNAs from the small ribosomal subunits of Escherichia coli, Bacillus stearothermophilus and Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Chemical reagents were employed......, T2 and S1. The data enabled the various minimal secondary structural models, proposed for the 3'-regions of the E. coli and S. cerevisiae RNAs, to be critically examined, and to demonstrate that the main common features of these models are correct. The results also reveal the presence and position...... regions of the RNAs are particularly important for the functioning of the ribosome. They are involved in mRNA, tRNA and ribosomal factor binding. The results reveal that while the functionally important RNA sequences tend to be conserved, they are not always accessible in the free RNA; the pyrimidine...

  10. Structural biology.


    Holmes, K C


    Protein crystallography has become a major technique for understanding cellular processes. This has come about through great advances in the technology of data collection and interpretation, particularly the use of synchrotron radiation. The ability to express eukaryotic genes in Escherichia coli is also important. Analysis of known structures shows that all proteins are built from about 1000 primeval folds. The collection of all primeval folds provides a basis for predicting structure from s...

  11. Heavy metal whole-cell biosensors using eukaryotic microorganisms: an updated critical review.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan-Carlos eGutierrez


    Full Text Available This review analyzes the advantages and disadvantages of using eukaryotic microorganisms to design whole-cell biosensors (WCBs for monitoring environmental heavy metal pollution in soil or aquatic habitats. Basic considerations for designing an eukaryotic WCB are also shown. A comparative analysis of the promoter genes used to design whole-cell biosensors is carried out, and the sensitivity and reproducibility of the main reporter genes used is also reviewed. Three main eukaryotic taxonomic groups are considered: yeasts, microalgae and ciliated protozoa. Models that have been widely analyzed as potential WCBs are the Saccharomyces cerevisiae model among yeasts, the Tetrahymena thermophila model for ciliates and Chlamydomonas model for microalgae. The advantages and disadvantages of each microbial group are discussed, and a ranking of sensitivity to the same type of metal pollutant from reported eukaryotic WCBs is also shown. General conclusions and possible future developments of eukaryotic WCBs are reported.

  12. MetWAMer: eukaryotic translation initiation site prediction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brendel Volker


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Translation initiation site (TIS identification is an important aspect of the gene annotation process, requisite for the accurate delineation of protein sequences from transcript data. We have developed the MetWAMer package for TIS prediction in eukaryotic open reading frames of non-viral origin. MetWAMer can be used as a stand-alone, third-party tool for post-processing gene structure annotations generated by external computational programs and/or pipelines, or directly integrated into gene structure prediction software implementations. Results MetWAMer currently implements five distinct methods for TIS prediction, the most accurate of which is a routine that combines weighted, signal-based translation initiation site scores and the contrast in coding potential of sequences flanking TISs using a perceptron. Also, our program implements clustering capabilities through use of the k-medoids algorithm, thereby enabling cluster-specific TIS parameter utilization. In practice, our static weight array matrix-based indexing method for parameter set lookup can be used with good results in data sets exhibiting moderate levels of 5'-complete coverage. Conclusion We demonstrate that improvements in statistically-based models for TIS prediction can be achieved by taking the class of each potential start-methionine into account pending certain testing conditions, and that our perceptron-based model is suitable for the TIS identification task. MetWAMer represents a well-documented, extensible, and freely available software system that can be readily re-trained for differing target applications and/or extended with existing and novel TIS prediction methods, to support further research efforts in this area.

  13. Primary structure of dihydrofolate reductase and mitochondrial ribosomal protein L36 genes from the basidiomycete Coprinus cinereus. (United States)

    Aimi, Tadanori; Fukuhara, Shoji; Ishiguro, Maki; Kitamoto, Yutaka; Morinaga, Tsutomu


    We amplified and sequenced the dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR) gene of the basidiomycete Coprinus cinereus. Downstream of the DHFR coding region, a mitochondrial (mt) ribosomal protein L36 (RPL36) gene was discovered in the opposite orientation to DHFR gene. Putative polyadenylation signals of the two genes overlapped, both containing the 8-bp palindrome 5'-aatatatt-3'. The finding that C. cinereus DHFR gene is closely clustered with a mt protein gene strongly suggests that C. cinereus DHFR is closely related to mt function and evolution. The amino acid sequence of C. cinereus DHFR is most homologous to eukaryotic proteins such as Cryptococcus neoformans and Pneumocystis carinii DHFRs. However, the sequence of C. cinereus mt RPL36 closely resembles RPL36 of bacteria and cyanobacteria such as Synechocystis sp. and Escherichia coli. This result strongly supports the serial endosymbiotic theory of the development of ancestral eukaryotes, and suggests that C. cinereus mt RPL36 gene originated from the ancestral eubacterial genome.

  14. An optimized approach for annotation of large eukaryotic genomic sequences using genetic algorithm. (United States)

    Chowdhury, Biswanath; Garai, Arnav; Garai, Gautam


    Detection of important functional and/or structural elements and identification of their positions in a large eukaryotic genomic sequence are an active research area. Gene is an important functional and structural unit of DNA. The computation of gene prediction is, therefore, very essential for detailed genome annotation. In this paper, we propose a new gene prediction technique based on Genetic Algorithm (GA) to determine the optimal positions of exons of a gene in a chromosome or genome. The correct identification of the coding and non-coding regions is difficult and computationally demanding. The proposed genetic-based method, named Gene Prediction with Genetic Algorithm (GPGA), reduces this problem by searching only one exon at a time instead of all exons along with its introns. This representation carries a significant advantage in that it breaks the entire gene-finding problem into a number of smaller sub-problems, thereby reducing the computational complexity. We tested the performance of the GPGA with existing benchmark datasets and compared the results with well-known and relevant techniques. The comparison shows the better or comparable performance of the proposed method. We also used GPGA for annotating the human chromosome 21 (HS21) using cross-species comparisons with the mouse orthologs. It was noted that the GPGA predicted true genes with better accuracy than other well-known approaches.

  15. Evolutionary origin, diversification and specialization of eukaryotic MutS homolog mismatch repair proteins


    Culligan, Kevin M.; Meyer-Gauen, Gilbert; Lyons-Weiler, James; Hays, John B.


    Most eubacteria, and all eukaryotes examined thus far, encode homologs of the DNA mismatch repair protein MutS. Although eubacteria encode only one or two MutS-like proteins, eukaryotes encode at least six distinct MutS homolog (MSH) proteins, corresponding to conserved (orthologous) gene families. This suggests evolution of individual gene family lines of descent by several duplication/specialization events. Using quantitative phylogenetic analyses (RASA, or relative apparent synapomorphy an...

  16. Structure and regulation of the Asr gene family in banana. (United States)

    Henry, Isabelle M; Carpentier, Sebastien C; Pampurova, Suzana; Van Hoylandt, Anais; Panis, Bart; Swennen, Rony; Remy, Serge


    Abscisic acid, stress, ripening proteins (ASR) are a family of plant-specific small hydrophilic proteins. Studies in various plant species have highlighted their role in increased resistance to abiotic stress, including drought, but their specific function remains unknown. As a first step toward their potential use in crop improvement, we investigated the structure and regulation of the Asr gene family in Musa species (bananas and plantains). We determined that the Musa Asr gene family contained at least four members, all of which exhibited the typical two exons, one intron structure of Asr genes and the "ABA/WDS" (abscisic acid/water deficit stress) domain characteristic of Asr genes. Phylogenetic analyses determined that the Musa Asr genes were closely related to each other, probably as the product of recent duplication events. For two of the four members, two versions corresponding to the two sub-genomes of Musa, acuminata and balbisiana were identified. Gene expression and protein analyses were performed and Asr expression could be detected in meristem cultures, root, pseudostem, leaf and cormus. In meristem cultures, mAsr1 and mAsr3 were induced by osmotic stress and wounding, while mAsr3 and mAsr4 were induced by exposure to ABA. mASR3 exhibited the most variation both in terms of amino acid sequence and expression pattern, making it the most promising candidate for further functional study and use in crop improvement.

  17. Core histone genes of Giardia intestinalis: genomic organization, promoter structure, and expression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam Rodney D


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Giardia intestinalis is a protist found in freshwaters worldwide, and is the most common cause of parasitic diarrhea in humans. The phylogenetic position of this parasite is still much debated. Histones are small, highly conserved proteins that associate tightly with DNA to form chromatin within the nucleus. There are two classes of core histone genes in higher eukaryotes: DNA replication-independent histones and DNA replication-dependent ones. Results We identified two copies each of the core histone H2a, H2b and H3 genes, and three copies of the H4 gene, at separate locations on chromosomes 3, 4 and 5 within the genome of Giardia intestinalis, but no gene encoding a H1 linker histone could be recognized. The copies of each gene share extensive DNA sequence identities throughout their coding and 5' noncoding regions, which suggests these copies have arisen from relatively recent gene duplications or gene conversions. The transcription start sites are at triplet A sequences 1–27 nucleotides upstream of the translation start codon for each gene. We determined that a 50 bp region upstream from the start of the histone H4 coding region is the minimal promoter, and a highly conserved 15 bp sequence called the histone motif (him is essential for its activity. The Giardia core histone genes are constitutively expressed at approximately equivalent levels and their mRNAs are polyadenylated. Competition gel-shift experiments suggest that a factor within the protein complex that binds him may also be a part of the protein complexes that bind other promoter elements described previously in Giardia. Conclusion In contrast to other eukaryotes, the Giardia genome has only a single class of core histone genes that encode replication-independent histones. Our inability to locate a gene encoding the linker histone H1 leads us to speculate that the H1 protein may not be required for the compaction of Giardia's small and gene-rich genome.

  18. Serial endosymbiosis or singular event at the origin of eukaryotes? (United States)

    Lane, Nick


    'On the Origin of Mitosing Cells' heralded a new way of seeing cellular evolution, with symbiosis at its heart. Lynn Margulis (then Sagan) marshalled an impressive array of evidence for endosymbiosis, from cell biology to atmospheric chemistry and Earth history. Despite her emphasis on symbiosis, she saw plenty of evidence for gradualism in eukaryotic evolution, with multiple origins of mitosis and sex, repeated acquisitions of plastids, and putative evolutionary intermediates throughout the microbial world. Later on, Margulis maintained her view of multiple endosymbioses giving rise to other organelles such as hydrogenosomes, in keeping with the polyphyletic assumptions of the serial endosymbiosis theory. She stood at the threshold of the phylogenetic era, and anticipated its potential. Yet while predicting that the nucleotide sequences of genes would enable a detailed reconstruction of eukaryotic evolution, Margulis did not, and could not, imagine the radically different story that would eventually emerge from comparative genomics. The last eukaryotic common ancestor now seems to have been essentially a modern eukaryotic cell that had already evolved mitosis, meiotic sex, organelles and endomembrane systems. The long search for missing evolutionary intermediates has failed to turn up a single example, and those discussed by Margulis turn out to have evolved reductively from more complex ancestors. Strikingly, Margulis argued that all eukaryotes had mitochondria in her 1967 paper (a conclusion that she later disavowed). But she developed her ideas in the context of atmospheric oxygen and aerobic respiration, neither of which is consistent with more recent geological and phylogenetic findings. Instead, a modern synthesis of genomics and bioenergetics points to the endosymbiotic restructuring of eukaryotic genomes in relation to bioenergetic membranes as the singular event that permitted the evolution of morphological complexity. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All

  19. Non-coding RNAs: the architects of eukaryotic complexity. (United States)

    Mattick, J S


    Around 98% of all transcriptional output in humans is non-coding RNA. RNA-mediated gene regulation is widespread in higher eukaryotes and complex genetic phenomena like RNA interference, co-suppression, transgene silencing, imprinting, methylation, and possibly position-effect variegation and transvection, all involve intersecting pathways based on or connected to RNA signaling. I suggest that the central dogma is incomplete, and that intronic and other non-coding RNAs have evolved to comprise a second tier of gene expression in eukaryotes, which enables the integration and networking of complex suites of gene activity. Although proteins are the fundamental effectors of cellular function, the basis of eukaryotic complexity and phenotypic variation may lie primarily in a control architecture composed of a highly parallel system of trans-acting RNAs that relay state information required for the coordination and modulation of gene expression, via chromatin remodeling, RNA-DNA, RNA-RNA and RNA-protein interactions. This system has interesting and perhaps informative analogies with small world networks and dataflow computing.

  20. Gene structure, phylogeny and expression profile of the sucrose ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)


    Sep 16, 2015 ... accelerates leaf expansion, reduces seed abortion, and enhances fiber production. Mol. Plant 5, 430–441. Zhang D., Xu B., Yang X., Zhang Z. and Li B. 2011 The sucrose synthase gene family in Populus: structure, expression, and evo- lution. Tree Genet. Genomes 7, 443–456. Zhang J., Arro J., Chen Y.

  1. Genome-wide analysis of eukaryote thaumatin-like proteins (TLPs with an emphasis on poplar

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Duplessis Sébastien


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plant inducible immunity includes the accumulation of a set of defense proteins during infection called pathogenesis-related (PR proteins, which are grouped into families termed PR-1 to PR-17. The PR-5 family is composed of thaumatin-like proteins (TLPs, which are responsive to biotic and abiotic stress and are widely studied in plants. TLPs were also recently discovered in fungi and animals. In the poplar genome, TLPs are over-represented compared with annual species and their transcripts strongly accumulate during stress conditions. Results Our analysis of the poplar TLP family suggests that the expansion of this gene family was followed by diversification, as differences in expression patterns and predicted properties correlate with phylogeny. In particular, we identified a clade of poplar TLPs that cluster to a single 350 kb locus of chromosome I and that are up-regulated by poplar leaf rust infection. A wider phylogenetic analysis of eukaryote TLPs - including plant, animal and fungi sequences - shows that TLP gene content and diversity increased markedly during land plant evolution. Mapping the reported functions of characterized TLPs to the eukaryote phylogenetic tree showed that antifungal or glycan-lytic properties are widespread across eukaryote phylogeny, suggesting that these properties are shared by most TLPs and are likely associated with the presence of a conserved acidic cleft in their 3D structure. Also, we established an exhaustive catalog of TLPs with atypical architectures such as small-TLPs, TLP-kinases and small-TLP-kinases, which have potentially developed alternative functions (such as putative receptor kinases for pathogen sensing and signaling. Conclusion Our study, based on the most recent plant genome sequences, provides evidence for TLP gene family diversification during land plant evolution. We have shown that the diverse functions described for TLPs are not restricted to specific clades but seem

  2. Open questions on the origin of eukaryotes (United States)

    López-García, Purificación; Moreira, David


    Despite recent progress, the origin of the eukaryotic cell remains enigmatic. It is now known that the last eukaryotic common ancestor was complex and that endosymbiosis played a crucial role in eukaryogenesis at least via the acquisition of the alphaproteobacterial ancestor of mitochondria. However, the nature of the mitochondrial host is controversial, although the recent discovery of an archaeal lineage phylogenetically close to eukaryotes reinforces models proposing archaea-derived hosts. We argue that, in addition to improved phylogenomic analyses with more comprehensive taxon sampling to pinpoint the closest prokaryotic relatives of eukaryotes, determining plausible mechanisms and selective forces at the origin of key eukaryotic features, such as the nucleus or the bacterial-like eukaryotic membrane system, is essential to constrain existing models. PMID:26455774

  3. The Structural Characterization of Tumor Fusion Genes and Proteins. (United States)

    Wang, Dandan; Li, Daixi; Qin, Guangrong; Zhang, Wen; Ouyang, Jian; Zhang, Menghuan; Xie, Lu


    Chromosomal translocation, which generates fusion proteins in blood tumor or solid tumor, is considered as one of the major causes leading to cancer. Recent studies suggested that the disordered fragments in a fusion protein might contribute to its carcinogenicity. Here, we investigated the sequence feature near the breakpoints in the fusion partner genes, the structure features of breakpoints in fusion proteins, and the posttranslational modification preference in the fusion proteins. Results show that the breakpoints in the fusion partner genes have both sequence preference and structural preference. At the sequence level, nucleotide combination AG is preferred before the breakpoint and GG is preferred at the breakpoint. At the structural level, the breakpoints in the fusion proteins prefer to be located in the disordered regions. Further analysis suggests the phosphorylation sites at serine, threonine, and the methylation sites at arginine are enriched in disordered regions of the fusion proteins. Using EML4-ALK as an example, we further explained how the fusion protein leads to the protein disorder and contributes to its carcinogenicity. The sequence and structural features of the fusion proteins may help the scientific community to predict novel breakpoints in fusion genes and better understand the structure and function of fusion proteins.

  4. Structure and location of the murine adrenoleukodystrophy gene

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kennedy, M.A. [Christchurch School of Medicine (New Zealand); Rowland, S.A.; Dodd, A. [Univ. of Auckland (New Zealand)] [and others


    X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy (ALD) is a degenerative neurological disease characterized by the accumulation of very long chain fatty acids in various tissues and demyelination of the central nervous system. The human gene responsible for the disease encodes a membrane-bound ATP-binding transporter protein that is located in peroxisomes. We isolated the mouse adrenoleukodystrophy gene, determined its structure, and mapped it both cytogentically and genetically. The mouse gene is very similar in structure to the human gene, consisting of 10 exons arranged over a 22-kb genomic region. We localized it in band B of the mouse X chromosome by fluorescence in situ hybridization analysis and, using a new microsatellite repeat polymorphism, determined the map location as 47 cM from the X centromere. We found evidence for other sequences in the mouse genome related to the 3{prime} end of Aldgh. This study paves the way for the construction of gene-targeting plasmids that may be used to develop an animal model of ALD. 35 refs., 5 figs.

  5. Metabolic symbiosis at the origin of eukaryotes. (United States)

    López-Garćia, P; Moreira, D


    Thirty years after Margulis revived the endosymbiosis theory for the origin of mitochondria and chloroplasts, two novel symbiosis hypotheses for the origin of eukaryotes have been put forward. Both propose that eukaryotes arose through metabolic symbiosis (syntrophy) between eubacteria and methanogenic Archaea. They also propose that this was mediated by interspecies hydrogen transfer and that, initially, mitochondria were anaerobic. These hypotheses explain the mosaic character of eukaryotes (i.e. an archaeal-like genetic machinery and a eubacterial-like metabolism), as well as distinct eukaryotic characteristics (which are proposed to be products of symbiosis). Combined data from comparative genomics, microbial ecology and the fossil record should help to test their validity.

  6. Starting the protein synthesis machine: eukaryotic translation initiation. (United States)

    Preiss, Thomas; W Hentze, Matthias


    The final assembly of the protein synthesis machinery occurs during translation initiation. This delicate process involves both ends of eukaryotic messenger RNAs as well as multiple sequential protein-RNA and protein-protein interactions. As is expected from its critical position in the gene expression pathway between the transcriptome and the proteome, translation initiation is a selective and highly regulated process. This synopsis summarises the current status of the field and identifies intriguing open questions. Copyright 2003 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Enrichment of HP1a on Drosophila chromosome 4 genes creates an alternate chromatin structure critical for regulation in this heterochromatic domain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicole C Riddle


    Full Text Available Chromatin environments differ greatly within a eukaryotic genome, depending on expression state, chromosomal location, and nuclear position. In genomic regions characterized by high repeat content and high gene density, chromatin structure must silence transposable elements but permit expression of embedded genes. We have investigated one such region, chromosome 4 of Drosophila melanogaster. Using chromatin-immunoprecipitation followed by microarray (ChIP-chip analysis, we examined enrichment patterns of 20 histone modifications and 25 chromosomal proteins in S2 and BG3 cells, as well as the changes in several marks resulting from mutations in key proteins. Active genes on chromosome 4 are distinct from those in euchromatin or pericentric heterochromatin: while there is a depletion of silencing marks at the transcription start sites (TSSs, HP1a and H3K9me3, but not H3K9me2, are enriched strongly over gene bodies. Intriguingly, genes on chromosome 4 are less frequently associated with paused polymerase. However, when the chromatin is altered by depleting HP1a or POF, the RNA pol II enrichment patterns of many chromosome 4 genes shift, showing a significant decrease over gene bodies but not at TSSs, accompanied by lower expression of those genes. Chromosome 4 genes have a low incidence of TRL/GAGA factor binding sites and a low T(m downstream of the TSS, characteristics that could contribute to a low incidence of RNA polymerase pausing. Our data also indicate that EGG and POF jointly regulate H3K9 methylation and promote HP1a binding over gene bodies, while HP1a targeting and H3K9 methylation are maintained at the repeats by an independent mechanism. The HP1a-enriched, POF-associated chromatin structure over the gene bodies may represent one type of adaptation for genes embedded in repetitive DNA.

  8. The conserved Candida albicans CA3427 gene product defines a new family of proteins exhibiting the generic periplasmic binding protein structural fold.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sébastien Santini

    Full Text Available Nosocomial diseases due to Candida albicans infections are in constant rise in hospitals, where they cause serious complications to already fragile intensive care patients. Antifungal drug resistance is fast becoming a serious issue due to the emergence of strains resistant to currently available antifungal agents. Thus the urgency to identify new potential protein targets, the function and structure of which may guide the development of new antifungal drugs. In this context, we initiated a comparative genomics study in search of promising protein coding genes among the most conserved ones in reference fungal genomes. The CA3427 gene was selected on the basis of its presence among pathogenic fungi contrasting with its absence in the non pathogenic Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We report the crystal 3D-structure of the Candida albicans CA3427 protein at 2.1 Å resolution. The combined analysis of its sequence and structure reveals a structural fold originally associated with periplasmic binding proteins. The CA3427 structure highlights a binding site located between the two protein domains, corresponding to a sequence segment conserved among fungi. Two crystal forms of CA3427 were found, suggesting that the presence or absence of a ligand at the proposed binding site might trigger a "Venus flytrap" motion, coupled to the previously described activity of bacterial periplasmic binding proteins. The conserved binding site defines a new subfamily of periplasmic binding proteins also found in many bacteria of the bacteroidetes division, in a choanoflagellate (a free-living unicellular and colonial flagellate eukaryote and in a placozoan (the closest multicellular relative of animals. A phylogenetic analysis suggests that this gene family originated in bacteria before its horizontal transfer to an ancestral eukaryote prior to the radiation of fungi. It was then lost by the Saccharomycetales which include Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

  9. Correlations in the population structure of music, genes and language. (United States)

    Brown, Steven; Savage, Patrick E; Ko, Albert Min-Shan; Stoneking, Mark; Ko, Ying-Chin; Loo, Jun-Hun; Trejaut, Jean A


    We present, to our knowledge, the first quantitative evidence that music and genes may have coevolved by demonstrating significant correlations between traditional group-level folk songs and mitochondrial DNA variation among nine indigenous populations of Taiwan. These correlations were of comparable magnitude to those between language and genes for the same populations, although music and language were not significantly correlated with one another. An examination of population structure for genetics showed stronger parallels to music than to language. Overall, the results suggest that music might have a sufficient time-depth to retrace ancient population movements and, additionally, that it might be capturing different aspects of population history than language. Music may therefore have the potential to serve as a novel marker of human migrations to complement genes, language and other markers.

  10. Eelgrass Leaf Surface Microbiomes Are Locally Variable and Highly Correlated with Epibiotic Eukaryotes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mia M. Bengtsson


    Full Text Available Eelgrass (Zostera marina is a marine foundation species essential for coastal ecosystem services around the northern hemisphere. Like all macroscopic organisms, it possesses a microbiome (here defined as an associated prokaryotic community which may play critical roles in modulating the interaction of eelgrass with its environment. For example, its leaf surface microbiome could inhibit or attract eukaryotic epibionts which may overgrow the eelgrass leading to reduced primary productivity and subsequent eelgrass meadow decline. We used amplicon sequencing of the 16S and 18S rRNA genes of prokaryotes and eukaryotes to assess the leaf surface microbiome (prokaryotes as well as eukaryotic epibionts in- and outside lagoons on the German Baltic Sea coast. Prokaryote microbiomes varied substantially both between sites inside lagoons and between open coastal and lagoon sites. Water depth, leaf area and biofilm chlorophyll a concentration explained a large amount of variation in both prokaryotic and eukaryotic community composition. The prokaryotic microbiome and eukaryotic epibiont communities were highly correlated, and network analysis revealed disproportionate co-occurrence between a limited number of eukaryotic taxa and several bacterial taxa. This suggests that eelgrass leaf surfaces are home to a mosaic of microbiomes of several epibiotic eukaryotes, in addition to the microbiome of the eelgrass itself. Our findings thereby underline that eukaryotic diversity should be taken into account in order to explain prokaryotic microbiome assembly and dynamics in aquatic environments.

  11. The Structural Characterization of Tumor Fusion Genes and Proteins


    Wang, Dandan; Li, Daixi; Qin, Guangrong; Zhang, Wen; Ouyang, Jian; Zhang, Menghuan; Xie, Lu


    Chromosomal translocation, which generates fusion proteins in blood tumor or solid tumor, is considered as one of the major causes leading to cancer. Recent studies suggested that the disordered fragments in a fusion protein might contribute to its carcinogenicity. Here, we investigated the sequence feature near the breakpoints in the fusion partner genes, the structure features of breakpoints in fusion proteins, and the posttranslational modification preference in the fusion proteins. Result...

  12. Harnessing the complexity of gene expression data from cancer: from single gene to structural pathway methods

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emmert-Streib Frank


    Full Text Available Abstract High-dimensional gene expression data provide a rich source of information because they capture the expression level of genes in dynamic states that reflect the biological functioning of a cell. For this reason, such data are suitable to reveal systems related properties inside a cell, e.g., in order to elucidate molecular mechanisms of complex diseases like breast or prostate cancer. However, this is not only strongly dependent on the sample size and the correlation structure of a data set, but also on the statistical hypotheses tested. Many different approaches have been developed over the years to analyze gene expression data to (I identify changes in single genes, (II identify changes in gene sets or pathways, and (III identify changes in the correlation structure in pathways. In this paper, we review statistical methods for all three types of approaches, including subtypes, in the context of cancer data and provide links to software implementations and tools and address also the general problem of multiple hypotheses testing. Further, we provide recommendations for the selection of such analysis methods. Reviewers This article was reviewed by Arcady Mushegian, Byung-Soo Kim and Joel Bader.

  13. Eukaryotic richness in the abyss: insights from pyrotag sequencing.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Pawlowski

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The deep sea floor is considered one of the most diverse ecosystems on Earth. Recent environmental DNA surveys based on clone libraries of rRNA genes confirm this observation and reveal a high diversity of eukaryotes present in deep-sea sediment samples. However, environmental clone-library surveys yield only a modest number of sequences with which to evaluate the diversity of abyssal eukaryotes. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here, we examined the richness of eukaryotic DNA in deep Arctic and Southern Ocean samples using massively parallel sequencing of the 18S ribosomal RNA (rRNA V9 hypervariable region. In very small volumes of sediments, ranging from 0.35 to 0.7 g, we recovered up to 7,499 unique sequences per sample. By clustering sequences having up to 3 differences, we observed from 942 to 1756 Operational Taxonomic Units (OTUs per sample. Taxonomic analyses of these OTUs showed that DNA of all major groups of eukaryotes is represented at the deep-sea floor. The dinoflagellates, cercozoans, ciliates, and euglenozoans predominate, contributing to 17%, 16%, 10%, and 8% of all assigned OTUs, respectively. Interestingly, many sequences represent photosynthetic taxa or are similar to those reported from the environmental surveys of surface waters. Moreover, each sample contained from 31 to 71 different metazoan OTUs despite the small sample volume collected. This indicates that a significant faction of the eukaryotic DNA sequences likely do not belong to living organisms, but represent either free, extracellular DNA or remains and resting stages of planktonic species. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: In view of our study, the deep-sea floor appears as a global DNA repository, which preserves genetic information about organisms living in the sediment, as well as in the water column above it. This information can be used for future monitoring of past and present environmental changes.

  14. The gene structure of the Drosophila melanogaster proto-oncogene, kayak, and its nested gene, fos-intronic gene. (United States)

    Hudson, Stephanie Gidget; Goldstein, Elliott S


    We present herein a new model for the structure of the Drosophila kayak gene as well as preliminary data on the functional differences of its various isoforms. kayak is a homolog of the human proto-oncogene, c-fos. kayak has three different starts of transcription, and therefore promoters (P)kay-alpha, (P)kay-beta and (P)kay-gamma. These three promoters lead to four different transcripts: kay-alpha, kay(sro), kay-beta and kay-gamma. (P)kay-alpha produces two different transcripts: kay-alpha and kay(sro) where the other two promoters, (P)kay-beta and (P)kay-gamma, produce a single transcript each. The transcripts kay-alpha, beta and gamma all splice into the mainbody of the kay gene, which codes for the DNA binding domain and leucine zipper; kay(sro) is not spliced. Also, within this region is a nested gene, fos-intronic gene (fig) which is transcribed in the opposite direction. fig codes for a predicted PP2C phosphatase. fig has two different promoters which produce two different transcripts, both in the same reading frame, fig-alpha and beta. This is an unusual gene structure for Drosophila. Only 13% of Drosophila genes have multiple promoters and only 7% have a nested gene. RT-PCR was performed on each transcript to determine the relative amounts of each RNA produced. All spliced kay transcripts appear to have equal abundance. The unspliced kay(sro) transcript has a lower abundance than kay-alpha. Both fig transcripts are also detected in all stages tested. Lethal phase analysis and complementation testing suggest that the three isoforms of kayak may have different functions.

  15. Phylogeny, gene structures, and expression patterns of the ERF gene family in soybean (Glycine max L.). (United States)

    Zhang, Gaiyun; Chen, Ming; Chen, Xueping; Xu, Zhaoshi; Guan, Shan; Li, Lian-Cheng; Li, Aili; Guo, Jiaming; Mao, Long; Ma, Youzhi


    Members of the ERF transcription factor family play important roles in regulating gene expression in response to biotic and abiotic stresses. In soybean (Glycine max L.), however, only a few ERF genes have been studied so far. In this study, 98 unigenes that contained a complete AP2/ERF domain were identified from 63,676 unique sequences in the DFCI Soybean Gene Index database. The phylogeny, gene structures, and putative conserved motifs in soybean ERF proteins were analysed, and compared with those of Arabidopsis and rice. The members of the soybean ERF family were divided into 12 subgroups, similar to the case for Arabidopsis. AP2/ERF domains were conserved among soybean, Arabidopsis, and rice. Outside the AP2/ERF domain, many soybean-specific conserved motifs were detected. Expression analysis showed that nine unigenes belonging to six ERF family subgroups were induced by both biotic/abiotic stresses and hormone treatment, suggesting that they were involved in cross-talk between biotic and abiotic stress-responsive signalling pathways. Overexpression of two full-length genes from two different subgroups enhanced the tolerances to drought, salt stresses, and/or pathogen infection of the tobacco plants. These results will be useful for elucidating ERF gene-associated stress response signalling pathways in soybean.

  16. Phylogenomics reveals a new ‘megagroup’ including most photosynthetic eukaryotes


    Burki, Fabien; Shalchian-Tabrizi, Kamran; Pawlowski, Jan


    Advances in molecular phylogeny of eukaryotes have suggested a tree composed of a small number of supergroups. Phylogenomics recently established the relationships between some of these large assemblages, yet the deepest nodes are still unresolved. Here, we investigate early evolution among the major eukaryotic supergroups using the broadest multigene dataset to date (65 species, 135 genes). Our analyses provide strong support for the clustering of plants, chromalveolates, rhizarians, haptoph...

  17. Evolutionary origins, molecular cloning and expression of carotenoid hydroxylases in eukaryotic photosynthetic algae. (United States)

    Cui, Hongli; Yu, Xiaona; Wang, Yan; Cui, Yulin; Li, Xueqin; Liu, Zhaopu; Qin, Song


    . Protein domain structures and expression analyses in green alga H. pluvialis indicate that various chy genes are in different manners response to light. The knowledge of evolution of chy genes in photosynthetic eukaryotes provided information of gene cloning and functional investigation of chy genes in algae in the future.

  18. Evolutionary origins, molecular cloning and expression of carotenoid hydroxylases in eukaryotic photosynthetic algae (United States)


    green algae and higher plants. Protein domain structures and expression analyses in green alga H. pluvialis indicate that various chy genes are in different manners response to light. The knowledge of evolution of chy genes in photosynthetic eukaryotes provided information of gene cloning and functional investigation of chy genes in algae in the future. PMID:23834441

  19. Bacterial inosine 5'-monophosphate dehydrogenase ("IMPDH") DNA as a dominant selectable marker in mammals and other eukaryotes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Huberman, Eliezer [Chicago, IL; Baccam, Mekhine J [Woodridge, IL


    The present invention relates to a nucleic acid sequence and its corresponding protein sequence useful as a dominant selectable marker in eukaryotes. More specifically the invention relates to a nucleic acid encoding a bacterial IMPDH gene that has been engineered into a eukaryotic expression vectors, thereby permitting bacterial IMPDH expression in mammalian cells. Bacterial IMPDH expression confers resistance to MPA which can be used as dominant selectable marker in eukaryotes including mammals. The invention also relates to expression vectors and cells that express the bacterial IMPDH gene as well as gene therapies and protein synthesis.

  20. Alternative RNA Structure-Coupled Gene Regulations in Tumorigenesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Feng-Chi Chen


    Full Text Available Alternative RNA structures (ARSs, or alternative transcript isoforms, are critical for regulating cellular phenotypes in humans. In addition to generating functionally diverse protein isoforms from a single gene, ARS can alter the sequence contents of 5'/3' untranslated regions (UTRs and intronic regions, thus also affecting the regulatory effects of these regions. ARS may introduce premature stop codon(s into a transcript, and render the transcript susceptible to nonsense-mediated decay, which in turn can influence the overall gene expression level. Meanwhile, ARS can regulate the presence/absence of upstream open reading frames and microRNA targeting sites in 5'UTRs and 3'UTRs, respectively, thus affecting translational efficiencies and protein expression levels. Furthermore, since ARS may alter exon-intron structures, it can influence the biogenesis of intronic microRNAs and indirectly affect the expression of the target genes of these microRNAs. The connections between ARS and multiple regulatory mechanisms underline the importance of ARS in determining cell fate. Accumulating evidence indicates that ARS-coupled regulations play important roles in tumorigenesis. Here I will review our current knowledge in this field, and discuss potential future directions.

  1. Stochastic distribution of small soil eukaryotes resulting from high dispersal and drift in a local environment

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Bahram, Mohammad; Kohout, Petr; Anslan, Sten; Harend, Helery; Abarenkov, Kessy; Tedersoo, Leho


    .... Here we examine the spatial structure of communities of small soil eukaryotes to elucidate the underlying stochastic and deterministic processes in the absence of environmental gradients at a local scale...

  2. The Explanatory Models about the eukaryotic cell by secondary school students

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Camacho González, Johanna Patricia; Jara Colicoy, Natalia; Morales Orellana, Cristina; Rubio García, Nicole; Muñoz Guerrero, Tatiana; Rodríguez Tirado, Gonzalo


    The main objective of this study was to examine the explanatory models of secondary school students, about the structure of the animal eukaryotic cells before and after an didactic intervention, based...

  3. NGS-based biodiversity and community structure analysis of meiofaunal eukaryotes in shell sand from Hållö island, Smögen, and soft mud from Gullmarn Fjord, Sweden

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Quiterie Haenel


    Full Text Available Aim: The aim of this study was to assess the biodiversity and community structure of Swedish meiofaunal eukaryotes using metabarcoding. To validate the reliability of the metabarcoding approach, we compare the taxonomic resolution obtained using the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase 1 (COI ‘mini-barcode’ and nuclear 18S small ribosomal subunit (18S V1-V2 region, with traditional morphology-based identification of Xenacoelomorpha and Nematoda. Location: 30 samples were analysed from two ecologically distinct locations along the west coast of Sweden. 18 replicate samples of coarse shell sand were collected along the north-eastern side of Hållö island near Smögen, while 12 replicate samples of soft mud were collected in the Gullmarn Fjord near Lysekil. Methods: Meiofauna was extracted using flotation and siphoning methods. Both COI and 18S regions were amplified from total DNA samples using Metazoan specific primers and subsequently sequenced using Illumina MiSeq, producing in total 24 132 875 paired-end reads of 300 bp in length, of which 15 883 274 COI reads and 8 249 601 18S reads. These were quality filtered resulting in 7 954 017 COI sequences and 890 370 18S sequences, clustered into 2805 and 1472 representative OTUs respectively, yielding 190 metazoan OTUs for COI and 121 metazoan OTUs for 18S using a 97% sequence similarity threshold. Results: The Metazoan fraction represents 7% of the total dataset for COI (190 OTUs and 8% of sequences for 18S (121 OTUs. Annelida (30% of COI metazoan OTUs and 23.97% of 18S metazoan OTUs and Arthropoda (27.37% of COI metazoan OTUs and 11.57% of 18S metazoan OTUs, were the most OTU rich phyla identified in all samples combined. As well as Annelida and Arthropoda, other OTU rich phyla represented in our samples include Mollusca, Platyhelminthes and Nematoda. In total, 213 COI OTUs and 243 18S OTUs were identified to species using a 97% sequence similarity threshold, revealing some non-native species and

  4. The eukaryotic fossil record in deep time (United States)

    Butterfield, N.


    Eukaryotic organisms are defining constituents of the Phanerozoic biosphere, but they also extend well back into the Proterozoic record, primarily in the form of microscopic body fossils. Criteria for identifying pre-Ediacaran eukaryotes include large cell size, morphologically complex cell walls and/or the recognition of diagnostically eukaryotic cell division patterns. The oldest unambiguous eukaryote currently on record is an acanthomorphic acritarch (Tappania) from the Palaeoproterozoic Semri Group of central India. Older candidate eukaryotes are difficult to distinguish from giant bacteria, prokaryotic colonies or diagenetic artefacts. In younger Meso- and Neoproterozoic strata, the challenge is to recognize particular grades and clades of eukaryotes, and to document their macro-evolutionary expression. Distinctive unicellular forms include mid-Neoproterozoic testate amoebae and phosphate biomineralizing 'scale-microfossils' comparable to an extant green alga. There is also a significant record of seaweeds, possible fungi and problematica from this interval, documenting multiple independent experiments in eukaryotic multicellularity. Taxonomically resolved forms include a bangiacean red alga and probable vaucheriacean chromalveolate algae from the late Mesoproterozoic, and populations of hydrodictyacean and siphonocladalean green algae of mid Neoproterozoic age. Despite this phylogenetic breadth, however, or arguments from molecular clocks, there is no convincing evidence for pre-Ediacaran metazoans or metaphytes. The conspicuously incomplete nature of the Proterozoic record makes it difficult to resolve larger-scale ecological and evolutionary patterns. Even so, both body fossils and biomarker data point to a pre-Ediacaran biosphere dominated overwhelming by prokaryotes. Contemporaneous eukaryotes appear to be limited to conspicuously shallow water environments, and exhibit fundamentally lower levels of morphological diversity and evolutionary turnover than

  5. Signs of Selection in Synonymous Sites of the Mitochondrial Cytochrome b Gene of Baikal Oilfish (Comephoridae by mRNA Secondary Structure Alterations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Veronika I. Teterina


    Full Text Available Studies over the past decade have shown a significant role of synonymous mutations in posttranscriptional regulation of gene expression, which is particularly associated with messenger RNA (mRNA secondary structure alterations. Most studies focused on prokaryote genomes and the nuclear genomes of eukaryotes while little is known about the regulation of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA gene expression. This paper reveals signs of selection in synonymous sites of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene (Cytb of Baikal oilfish or golomyankas (Comephoridae directed towards altering the secondary structure of the mRNA and probably altering the character of mtDNA gene expression. Our findings are based on comparisons of intraspecific genetic variation patterns of small golomyanka (Comephorus dybowski and two genetic groups of big golomyanka (Comephorus dybowskii. Two approaches were used: (i analysis of the distribution of synonymous mutations between weak-AT (W and strong-GC (S nucleotides within species and groups in accordance with mutation directions from central to peripheral haplotypes and (ii approaches based on the predicted mRNA secondary structure.

  6. Evolution of the 2'-5'-Oligoadenylate Synthetase family in eukaryotes and bacteria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kjær, Karina Hansen; Poulsen, Jesper Buchhave; Reitamm, Tonu


    system. In view of these observations, we have pursued the idea that OAS genes could be present in other metazoans and in unicellular organisms as well. We have identified a number of OAS1 genes in annelids, mollusks, a cnidarian, chordates, and unicellular eukaryotes and also found a family of proteins...

  7. Living at the Limits: Evidence for Microbial Eukaryotes Thriving under Pressure in Deep Anoxic, Hypersaline Habitats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thorsten Stoeck


    Full Text Available The advent of molecular tools in microbial ecology paved the way to exploit the diversity of microbes in extreme environments. Here, we review these tools as applied in one of the most polyextreme habitats known on our planet, namely, deep hypersaline anoxic basins (DHABs, located at ca. 3000–3500 m depth in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea. Molecular gene signatures amplified from environmental DHAB samples identified a high degree of genetic novelty, as well as distinct communities in the DHABs. Canonical correspondence analyses provided strong evidence that salinity, ion composition, and anoxia were the strongest selection factors shaping protistan community structures, largely preventing cross-colonization among the individual basins. Thus, each investigated basin represents a unique habitat (“isolated islands of evolution”, making DHABs ideal model sites to test evolutionary hypotheses. Fluorescence in situ hybridization assays using specifically designed probes revealed that the obtained genetic signatures indeed originated from indigenous polyextremophiles. Electron microscopy imaging revealed unknown ciliates densely covered with prokaryote ectosymbionts, which may enable adaptations of eukaryotes to DHAB conditions. The research reviewed here significantly advanced our knowledge on polyextremophile eukaryotes, which are excellent models for a number of biological research areas, including ecology, diversity, biotechnology, evolutionary research, physiology, and astrobiology.

  8. The Eukaryotic Promoter Database EPD: the impact of in silico primer extension. (United States)

    Schmid, Christoph D; Praz, Viviane; Delorenzi, Mauro; Périer, Rouaïda; Bucher, Philipp


    The Eukaryotic Promoter Database (EPD) is an annotated non-redundant collection of eukaryotic POL II promoters, experimentally defined by a transcription start site (TSS). There may be multiple promoter entries for a single gene. The underlying experimental evidence comes from journal articles and, starting from release 73, from 5' ESTs of full-length cDNA clones used for so-called in silico primer extension. Access to promoter sequences is provided by pointers to TSS positions in nucleotide sequence entries. The annotation part of an EPD entry includes a description of the type and source of the initiation site mapping data, links to other biological databases and bibliographic references. EPD is structured in a way that facilitates dynamic extraction of biologically meaningful promoter subsets for comparative sequence analysis. Web-based interfaces have been developed that enable the user to view EPD entries in different formats, to select and extract promoter sequences according to a variety of criteria and to navigate to related databases exploiting different cross-references. Tools for analysing sequence motifs around TSSs defined in EPD are provided by the signal search analysis server. EPD can be accessed at http://www.epd.

  9. Replication and transcription on a collision course: eukaryotic regulation mechanisms and implications for DNA stability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandra eBrambati


    Full Text Available DNA replication and transcription are vital cellular processes during which the genetic information is copied into complementary DNA and RNA molecules. Highly complex machineries required for DNA and RNA synthesis compete for the same DNA template, therefore being on a collision course. Unscheduled replication-transcription clashes alter the gene transcription program and generate replication stress, reducing fork speed. Molecular pathways and mechanisms that minimize the conflict between replication and transcription have been extensively characterized in prokaryotic cells and recently identified also in eukaryotes. A pathological outcome of replication-transcription collisions is the formation of stable RNA:DNA hybrids in molecular structures called R-loops. Growing evidence suggests that R-loop accumulation promotes both genetic and epigenetic instability, thus severely affecting genome functionality. In the present review, we summarize the current knowledge related to replication and transcription conflicts in eukaryotes, their consequences on genome instability and the pathways involved in their resolution. These findings are relevant to clarify the molecular basis of cancer and neurodegenerative diseases.

  10. MicroRNAs: The Mega Regulators in Eukaryotic Genomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iftekhar Ahmed Baloch


    Full Text Available MicroRNAs (miRNAs are endogenous, small, noncoding RNAs of 18-25 nucleotide (nt in length that negatively regulate their complementary messenger RNAs (mRNAs at the transcriptional and posttranscriptional level in many eukaryotic organisms. By affecting the gene regulation, miRNAs are likely to be concerned with most biological processes. Majority of the miRNA genes are found in intergenic regions or in anti-sense orientation to genes and have their own miRNA gene promoter and regulatory units. In contrast to their name and size, the miRNAs perform mega functions in eukaryotic organisms. They perform important functions in plants and animals during growth, organogenesis, transgene suppression, signaling pathway, environmental stresses, disease development and defense against the invading viruses. miRNAs are evolutionarily conserved from species to species within the same kingdom. However, there is a controversy among scientists about their conservation from animals to plants. Their conserved nature becomes an important logical tool for homologous discovery of miRNAs in other species. This review is aimed at describing some basic concepts regarding biogenesis and functions of miRNAs.

  11. Domain Organization in Candida glabrata THI6, a Bifunctional Enzyme Required for Thiamin Biosynthesis in Eukaryotes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Paul, Debamita; Chatterjee, Abhishek; Begley, Tadhg P.; Ealick, Steven E. (Cornell); (TAM)


    THI6 is a bifunctional enzyme found in the thiamin biosynthetic pathway in eukaryotes. The N-terminal domain of THI6 catalyzes the ligation of the thiamin thiazole and pyrimidine moieties to form thiamin phosphate, and the C-terminal domain catalyzes the phosphorylation of 4-methyl-5-hydroxyethylthiazole in a salvage pathway. In prokaryotes, thiamin phosphate synthase and 4-methyl-5-hydroxyethylthiazole kinase are separate gene products. Here we report the first crystal structure of a eukaryotic THI6 along with several complexes that characterize the active sites responsible for the two chemical reactions. THI6 from Candida glabrata is a homohexamer in which the six protomers form a cage-like structure. Each protomer is composed of two domains, which are structurally homologous to their monofunctional bacterial counterparts. Two loop regions not found in the bacterial enzymes provide interactions between the two domains. The structures of different protein-ligand complexes define the thiazole and ATP binding sites of the 4-methyl-5-hydroxyethylthiazole kinase domain and the thiazole phosphate and 4-amino-5-hydroxymethyl-2-methylpyrimidine pyrophosphate binding sites of the thiamin phosphate synthase domain. Our structural studies reveal that the active sites of the two domains are 40 {angstrom} apart and are not connected by an obvious channel. Biochemical studies show 4-methyl-5-hydroxyethylthiazole phosphate is a substrate for THI6; however, adenosine diphospho-5{beta}-ethyl-4-methylthiazole-2-carboxylic acid, the product of THI4, is not a substrate for THI6. This suggests that an unidentified enzyme is necessary to produce the substrate for THI6 from the THI4 product.

  12. Leading role of TBP in the Establishment of Complexity in Eukaryotic Transcription Initiation Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eiryo Kawakami


    Full Text Available While both archaeal and eukaryotic transcription initiation systems utilize TBP (TATA box-binding protein and TFIIB (transcription factor IIB, eukaryotic systems include larger numbers of initiation factors. It remains uncertain how eukaryotic transcription initiation systems have evolved. Here, we investigate the evolutionary development of TBP and TFIIB, each of which has an intramolecular direct repeat, using two evolutionary indicators. Inter-repeat sequence dissimilarity (dDR, distance between direct repeats indicates that the asymmetry of two repeats in TBP and TFIIB has gradually increased during evolution. Interspecies sequence diversity (PD, phylogenetic diversity indicates that the resultant asymmetric structure, which is related to the ability to interact with multiple factors, diverged in archaeal TBP and archaeal/eukaryotic TFIIB during evolution. Our findings suggest that eukaryotic TBP initially acquired multiple Eukarya-specific interactors through asymmetric evolution of the two repeats. After the asymmetric TBP generated the complexity of the eukaryotic transcription initiation systems, its diversification halted and its asymmetric structure spread throughout eukaryotic species.

  13. Gene Expression Divergence is Coupled to Evolution of DNA Structure in Coding Regions (United States)

    Dai, Zhiming; Dai, Xianhua


    Sequence changes in coding region and regulatory region of the gene itself (cis) determine most of gene expression divergence between closely related species. But gene expression divergence between yeast species is not correlated with evolution of primary nucleotide sequence. This indicates that other factors in cis direct gene expression divergence. Here, we studied the contribution of DNA three-dimensional structural evolution as cis to gene expression divergence. We found that the evolution of DNA structure in coding regions and gene expression divergence are correlated in yeast. Similar result was also observed between Drosophila species. DNA structure is associated with the binding of chromatin remodelers and histone modifiers to DNA sequences in coding regions, which influence RNA polymerase II occupancy that controls gene expression level. We also found that genes with similar DNA structures are involved in the same biological process and function. These results reveal the previously unappreciated roles of DNA structure as cis-effects in gene expression. PMID:22125484

  14. Recognizing genes and other components of genomic structure

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Burks, C. (Los Alamos National Lab., NM (USA)); Myers, E. (Arizona Univ., Tucson, AZ (USA). Dept. of Computer Science); Stormo, G.D. (Colorado Univ., Boulder, CO (USA). Dept. of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology)


    The Aspen Center for Physics (ACP) sponsored a three-week workshop, with 26 scientists participating, from 28 May to 15 June, 1990. The workshop, entitled Recognizing Genes and Other Components of Genomic Structure, focussed on discussion of current needs and future strategies for developing the ability to identify and predict the presence of complex functional units on sequenced, but otherwise uncharacterized, genomic DNA. We addressed the need for computationally-based, automatic tools for synthesizing available data about individual consensus sequences and local compositional patterns into the composite objects (e.g., genes) that are -- as composite entities -- the true object of interest when scanning DNA sequences. The workshop was structured to promote sustained informal contact and exchange of expertise between molecular biologists, computer scientists, and mathematicians. No participant stayed for less than one week, and most attended for two or three weeks. Computers, software, and databases were available for use as electronic blackboards'' and as the basis for collaborative exploration of ideas being discussed and developed at the workshop. 23 refs., 2 tabs.

  15. High genetic diversity and novelty in eukaryotic plankton assemblages inhabiting saline lakes in the Qaidam basin. (United States)

    Wang, Jiali; Wang, Fang; Chu, Limin; Wang, Hao; Zhong, Zhiping; Liu, Zhipei; Gao, Jianyong; Duan, Hairong


    Saline lakes are intriguing ecosystems harboring extremely productive microbial communities in spite of their extreme environmental conditions. We performed a comprehensive analysis of the genetic diversity (18S rRNA gene) of the planktonic microbial eukaryotes (nano- and picoeukaryotes) in six different inland saline lakes located in the Qaidam Basin. The novelty level are high, with about 11.23% of the whole dataset showing planktonic eukaryotic assemblages are also most variable between different sampling sites in the same lake. Out of the parameters, four show significant correlation to this CCA: altitude, calcium, sodium and potassium concentrations. Overall, this study shows important gaps in the current knowledge about planktonic microbial eukaryotes inhabiting Qaidam Basin (hyper) saline water bodies. The identified diversity and novelty patterns among eukaryotic plankton assemblages in saline lake are of great importance for understanding and interpreting their ecology and evolution.

  16. Comparative DNA methylation and gene expression analysis identifies novel genes for structural congenital heart diseases. (United States)

    Grunert, Marcel; Dorn, Cornelia; Cui, Huanhuan; Dunkel, Ilona; Schulz, Kerstin; Schoenhals, Sophia; Sun, Wei; Berger, Felix; Chen, Wei; Sperling, Silke R


    For the majority of congenital heart diseases (CHDs), the full complexity of the causative molecular network, which is driven by genetic, epigenetic, and environmental factors, is yet to be elucidated. Epigenetic alterations are suggested to play a pivotal role in modulating the phenotypic expression of CHDs and their clinical course during life. Candidate approaches implied that DNA methylation might have a developmental role in CHD and contributes to the long-term progress of non-structural cardiac diseases. The aim of the present study is to define the postnatal epigenome of two common cardiac malformations, representing epigenetic memory, and adaption to hemodynamic alterations, which are jointly relevant for the disease course. We present the first analysis of genome-wide DNA methylation data obtained from myocardial biopsies of Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF) and ventricular septal defect patients. We defined stringent sets of differentially methylated regions between patients and controls, which are significantly enriched for genomic features like promoters, exons, and cardiac enhancers. For TOF, we linked DNA methylation with genome-wide expression data and found a significant overlap for hypermethylated promoters and down-regulated genes, and vice versa. We validated and replicated the methylation of selected CpGs and performed functional assays. We identified a hypermethylated novel developmental CpG island in the promoter of SCO2 and demonstrate its functional impact. Moreover, we discovered methylation changes co-localized with novel, differential splicing events among sarcomeric genes as well as transcription factor binding sites. Finally, we demonstrated the interaction of differentially methylated and expressed genes in TOF with mutated CHD genes in a molecular network. By interrogating DNA methylation and gene expression data, we identify two novel mechanism contributing to the phenotypic expression of CHDs: aberrant methylation of promoter CpG islands

  17. Prediction of highly expressed genes in microbes based on chromatin accessibility

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Willenbrock, Hanni; Ussery, David


    BACKGROUND: It is well known that gene expression is dependent on chromatin structure in eukaryotes and it is likely that chromatin can play a role in bacterial gene expression as well. Here, we use a nucleosomal position preference measure of anisotropic DNA flexibility to predict highly expressed...

  18. The phagotrophic origin of eukaryotes and phylogenetic classification of Protozoa. (United States)

    Cavalier-Smith, T


    Eukaryotes and archaebacteria form the clade neomura and are sisters, as shown decisively by genes fragmented only in archaebacteria and by many sequence trees. This sisterhood refutes all theories that eukaryotes originated by merging an archaebacterium and an alpha-proteobacterium, which also fail to account for numerous features shared specifically by eukaryotes and actinobacteria. I revise the phagotrophy theory of eukaryote origins by arguing that the essentially autogenous origins of most eukaryotic cell properties (phagotrophy, endomembrane system including peroxisomes, cytoskeleton, nucleus, mitosis and sex) partially overlapped and were synergistic with the symbiogenetic origin of mitochondria from an alpha-proteobacterium. These radical innovations occurred in a derivative of the neomuran common ancestor, which itself had evolved immediately prior to the divergence of eukaryotes and archaebacteria by drastic alterations to its eubacterial ancestor, an actinobacterial posibacterium able to make sterols, by replacing murein peptidoglycan by N-linked glycoproteins and a multitude of other shared neomuran novelties. The conversion of the rigid neomuran wall into a flexible surface coat and the associated origin of phagotrophy were instrumental in the evolution of the endomembrane system, cytoskeleton, nuclear organization and division and sexual life-cycles. Cilia evolved not by symbiogenesis but by autogenous specialization of the cytoskeleton. I argue that the ancestral eukaryote was uniciliate with a single centriole (unikont) and a simple centrosomal cone of microtubules, as in the aerobic amoebozoan zooflagellate Phalansterium. I infer the root of the eukaryote tree at the divergence between opisthokonts (animals, Choanozoa, fungi) with a single posterior cilium and all other eukaryotes, designated 'anterokonts' because of the ancestral presence of an anterior cilium. Anterokonts comprise the Amoebozoa, which may be ancestrally unikont, and a vast

  19. Challenges in Whole-Genome Annotation of Pyrosequenced Eukaryotic Genomes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kuo, Alan; Grigoriev, Igor


    Pyrosequencing technologies such as 454/Roche and Solexa/Illumina vastly lower the cost of nucleotide sequencing compared to the traditional Sanger method, and thus promise to greatly expand the number of sequenced eukaryotic genomes. However, the new technologies also bring new challenges such as shorter reads and new kinds and higher rates of sequencing errors, which complicate genome assembly and gene prediction. At JGI we are deploying 454 technology for the sequencing and assembly of ever-larger eukaryotic genomes. Here we describe our first whole-genome annotation of a purely 454-sequenced fungal genome that is larger than a yeast (>30 Mbp). The pezizomycotine (filamentous ascomycote) Aspergillus carbonarius belongs to the Aspergillus section Nigri species complex, members of which are significant as platforms for bioenergy and bioindustrial technology, as members of soil microbial communities and players in the global carbon cycle, and as agricultural toxigens. Application of a modified version of the standard JGI Annotation Pipeline has so far predicted ~;;10k genes. ~;;12percent of these preliminary annotations suffer a potential frameshift error, which is somewhat higher than the ~;;9percent rate in the Sanger-sequenced and conventionally assembled and annotated genome of fellow Aspergillus section Nigri member A. niger. Also,>90percent of A. niger genes have potential homologs in the A. carbonarius preliminary annotation. Weconclude, and with further annotation and comparative analysis expect to confirm, that 454 sequencing strategies provide a promising substrate for annotation of modestly sized eukaryotic genomes. We will also present results of annotation of a number of other pyrosequenced fungal genomes of bioenergy interest.

  20. A study of structural properties of gene network graphs for mathematical modeling of integrated mosaic gene networks. (United States)

    Petrovskaya, Olga V; Petrovskiy, Evgeny D; Lavrik, Inna N; Ivanisenko, Vladimir A


    Gene network modeling is one of the widely used approaches in systems biology. It allows for the study of complex genetic systems function, including so-called mosaic gene networks, which consist of functionally interacting subnetworks. We conducted a study of a mosaic gene networks modeling method based on integration of models of gene subnetworks by linear control functionals. An automatic modeling of 10,000 synthetic mosaic gene regulatory networks was carried out using computer experiments on gene knockdowns/knockouts. Structural analysis of graphs of generated mosaic gene regulatory networks has revealed that the most important factor for building accurate integrated mathematical models, among those analyzed in the study, is data on expression of genes corresponding to the vertices with high properties of centrality.

  1. The gene identification problem: An overview for developers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fickett, J.W.


    The gene identification problem is the problem of interpreting nucleotide sequences by computer, in order to provide tentative annotation on the location, structure, and functional class of protein-coding genes. This problem is of self-evident importance, and is far from being fully solved, particularly for higher eukaryotes, Thus it is not surprising that the number of algorithm and software developers working in this area is rapidly increasing. The present paper is an overview of the field, with an emphasis on eukaryotes, for such developers.

  2. Structure and chromosome assignment of the murine p36 (calpactin I heavy chain) gene

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Amiquel, P; Kristensen, Torsten; D'Eustachio, P


    , the complete intron/exon structure of the p36 gene was determined and the 5' and 3' noncoding regions of the gene were analyzed. The coding and 3' untranslated region of the p36 gene contains 12 exons which range in size from 48 to 322 base pairs (bp) with an average size of 107 bp. The repeat structures found...

  3. Human glucose phosphate isomerase: Exon mapping and gene structure

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Xu, Weiming; Lee, Pauline; Beutler, E. [Scripps Research Inst., La Jolla, CA (United States)


    The structure of the gene for human glucose phosphate isomerase (GPI) has been determined. Three GPI clones were isolated from a human genomic library by using a full-length GPI cDNA probe and were characterized. Oligonucleotides based on the known cDNA sequence were used as primers in amplification and sequence analyses. This led to the identification of the exon-intron junctions. By this approach, 18 exons and 17 introns have been identified. The exons range in size from 44 to 431 nucleotides. The intronic sequences surrounding the exons provide useful information for the identification of mutations that give rise to human GPI deficiency associated with chronic hemolytic anemia. 13 refs., 4 figs., 1 tab.

  4. Eukaryotic community diversity and spatial variation during drinking water production (by seawater desalination) and distribution in a full-scale network

    KAUST Repository

    Belila, Abdelaziz


    Eukaryotic microorganisms are naturally present in many water resources and can enter, grow and colonize water treatment and transport systems, including reservoirs, pipes and premise plumbing. In this study, we explored the eukaryotic microbial community structure in water during the (i) production of drinking water in a seawater desalination plant and (ii) transport of the drinking water in the distribution network. The desalination plant treatment involved pre-treatment (e.g. spruce filters), reverse osmosis (RO) membrane filtration and post-treatment steps (e.g. remineralization). 454 pyrosequencing analysis of the 18S rRNA gene revealed a highly diverse (35 phyla) and spatially variable eukaryotic community during water treatment and distribution. The desalination plant feed water contained a typical marine picoeukaryotic community dominated by Stramenopiles, Alveolates and Porifera. In the desalination plant Ascomycota was the most dominant phylum (15.5% relative abundance), followed by Alveolata (11.9%), unclassified fungi clade (10.9%) and Porifera (10.7%). In the drinking water distribution network, an uncultured fungi phylum was the major group (44.0%), followed by Chordata (17.0%), Ascomycota (11.0%) and Arthropoda (8.0%). Fungi constituted 40% of the total eukaryotic community in the treatment plant and the distribution network and their taxonomic composition was dominated by an uncultured fungi clade (55%). Comparing the plant effluent to the network samples, 84 OTUs (2.1%) formed the core eukaryotic community while 35 (8.4%) and 299 (71.5%) constituted unique OTUs in the produced water at the plant and combined tap water samples from the network, respectively. RO membrane filtration treatment significantly changed the water eukaryotic community composition and structure, highlighting the fact that (i) RO produced water is not sterile and (ii) the microbial community in the final tap water is influenced by the downstream distribution system. The study

  5. The P3 domain of eukaryotic RNases P/MRP: making a protein-rich RNA-based enzyme. (United States)

    Perederina, Anna; Krasilnikov, Andrey S


    Nuclear Ribonuclease (RNase) P is a universal essential RNA-based enzyme made of a catalytic RNA component and a protein part; eukaryotic RNase P is closely related to a universal eukaryotic ribonucleoprotein RNase MRP. The protein part of the eukaryotic RNases P/MRP is dramatically more complex than that in bacterial and archaeal RNases P. The increase in the complexity of the protein part in eukaryotic RNases P/MRP was accompanied by the appearance of a novel structural element in the RNA component: an essential and phylogenetically conserved helix-loop-helix P3 RNA domain. The crystal structure of the P3 RNA domain in a complex with protein components Pop6 and Pop7 has been recently solved. Here we discuss the most salient structural features of the P3 domain as well as its possible role in the evolutionary transition to the protein-rich eukaryotic RNases P/MRP.

  6. Localization of checkpoint and repair proteins in eukaryotes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lisby, Michael; Rothstein, Rodney


    In eukaryotes, the cellular response to DNA damage depends on the type of DNA structure being recognized by the checkpoint and repair machinery. DNA ends and single-stranded DNA are hallmarks of double-strand breaks and replication stress. These two structures are recognized by distinct sets...... is largely controlled by a network of protein-protein interactions, with the Mre11 complex initiating assembly at DNA ends and replication protein A directing recruitment to single-stranded DNA. This review summarizes current knowledge on the cellular organization of DSB repair and checkpoint proteins...... focusing on budding yeast and mammalian cells....

  7. The WRKY transcription factor superfamily: its origin in eukaryotes and expansion in plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wang Liangjiang


    Full Text Available Abstract Background WRKY proteins are newly identified transcription factors involved in many plant processes including plant responses to biotic and abiotic stresses. To date, genes encoding WRKY proteins have been identified only from plants. Comprehensive search for WRKY genes in non-plant organisms and phylogenetic analysis would provide invaluable information about the origin and expansion of the WRKY family. Results We searched all publicly available sequence data for WRKY genes. A single copy of the WRKY gene encoding two WRKY domains was identified from Giardia lamblia, a primitive eukaryote, Dictyostelium discoideum, a slime mold closely related to the lineage of animals and fungi, and the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, an early branching of plants. This ancestral WRKY gene seems to have duplicated many times during the evolution of plants, resulting in a large family in evolutionarily advanced flowering plants. In rice, the WRKY gene family consists of over 100 members. Analyses suggest that the C-terminal domain of the two-WRKY-domain encoding gene appears to be the ancestor of the single-WRKY-domain encoding genes, and that the WRKY domains may be phylogenetically classified into five groups. We propose a model to explain the WRKY family's origin in eukaryotes and expansion in plants. Conclusions WRKY genes seem to have originated in early eukaryotes and greatly expanded in plants. The elucidation of the evolution and duplicative expansion of the WRKY genes should provide valuable information on their functions.

  8. Evolution of networks and sequences in eukaryotic cell cycle control. (United States)

    Cross, Frederick R; Buchler, Nicolas E; Skotheim, Jan M


    The molecular networks regulating the G1-S transition in budding yeast and mammals are strikingly similar in network structure. However, many of the individual proteins performing similar network roles appear to have unrelated amino acid sequences, suggesting either extremely rapid sequence evolution, or true polyphyly of proteins carrying out identical network roles. A yeast/mammal comparison suggests that network topology, and its associated dynamic properties, rather than regulatory proteins themselves may be the most important elements conserved through evolution. However, recent deep phylogenetic studies show that fungal and animal lineages are relatively closely related in the opisthokont branch of eukaryotes. The presence in plants of cell cycle regulators such as Rb, E2F and cyclins A and D, that appear lost in yeast, suggests cell cycle control in the last common ancestor of the eukaryotes was implemented with this set of regulatory proteins. Forward genetics in non-opisthokonts, such as plants or their green algal relatives, will provide direct information on cell cycle control in these organisms, and may elucidate the potentially more complex cell cycle control network of the last common eukaryotic ancestor.

  9. Communities of microbial eukaryotes in the mammalian gut within the context of environmental eukaryotic diversity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Parfrey, Laura Wegener; Walters, William A.; Lauber, Christian L.; Clemente, Jose C.; Berg-Lyons, Donna; Teiling, Clotilde; Kodira, Chinnappa; Mohiuddin, Mohammed; Brunelle, Julie; Driscoll, Mark; Fierer, Noah; Gilbert, Jack A.; Knight, Rob


    Eukaryotic microbes (protists) residing in the vertebrate gut influence host health and disease, but their diversity and distribution in healthy hosts is poorly understood. Protists found in the gut are typically considered parasites, but many are commensal and some are beneficial. Further, the hygiene hypothesis predicts that association with our co-evolved microbial symbionts may be important to overall health. It is therefore imperative that we understand the normal diversity of our eukaryotic gut microbiota to test for such effects and avoid eliminating commensal organisms. We assembled a dataset of healthy individuals from two populations, one with traditional, agrarian lifestyles and a second with modern, westernized lifestyles, and characterized the human eukaryotic microbiota via high-throughput sequencing. To place the human gut microbiota within a broader context our dataset also includes gut samples from diverse mammals and samples from other aquatic and terrestrial environments. We curated the SILVA ribosomal database to reflect current knowledge of eukaryotic taxonomy and employ it as a phylogenetic framework to compare eukaryotic diversity across environment. We show that adults from the non-western population harbor a diverse community of protists, and diversity in the human gut is comparable to that in other mammals. However, the eukaryotic microbiota of the western population appears depauperate. The distribution of symbionts found in mammals reflects both host phylogeny and diet. Eukaryotic microbiota in the gut are less diverse and more patchily distributed than bacteria. More broadly, we show that eukaryotic communities in the gut are less diverse than in aquatic and terrestrial habitats, and few taxa are shared across habitat types, and diversity patterns of eukaryotes are correlated with those observed for bacteria. These results outline the distribution and diversity of microbial eukaryotic communities in the mammalian gut and across

  10. Metabolic profiles of prokaryotic and eukaryotic communities in deep-sea sponge Lamellomorpha sp. indicated by metagenomics (United States)

    Li, Zhi-Yong; Wang, Yue-Zhu; He, Li-Ming; Zheng, Hua-Jun


    The whole metabolism of a sponge holobiont and the respective contributions of prokaryotic and eukaryotic symbionts and their associations with the sponge host remain largely unclear. Meanwhile, compared with shallow water sponges, deep-sea sponges are rarely understood. Here we report the metagenomic exploration of deep-sea sponge Lamellomorpha sp. at the whole community level. Metagenomic data showed phylogenetically diverse prokaryotes and eukaryotes in Lamellomorpha sp.. MEGAN and gene enrichment analyses indicated different metabolic potentials of prokaryotic symbionts from eukaryotic symbionts, especially in nitrogen and carbon metabolisms, and their molecular interactions with the sponge host. These results supported the hypothesis that prokaryotic and eukaryotic symbionts have different ecological roles and relationships with sponge host. Moreover, vigorous denitrification, and CO2 fixation by chemoautotrophic prokaryotes were suggested for this deep-sea sponge. The study provided novel insights into the respective potentials of prokaryotic and eukaryotic symbionts and their associations with deep-sea sponge Lamellomorpha sp..

  11. Reproduction, symbiosis, and the eukaryotic cell (United States)

    Godfrey-Smith, Peter


    This paper develops a conceptual framework for addressing questions about reproduction, individuality, and the units of selection in symbiotic associations, with special attention to the origin of the eukaryotic cell. Three kinds of reproduction are distinguished, and a possible evolutionary sequence giving rise to a mitochondrion-containing eukaryotic cell from an endosymbiotic partnership is analyzed as a series of transitions between each of the three forms of reproduction. The sequence of changes seen in this “egalitarian” evolutionary transition is compared with those that apply in “fraternal” transitions, such as the evolution of multicellularity in animals. PMID:26286983

  12. The evolutionary dynamics of operon distributions in eukaryote genomes. (United States)

    Cutter, Asher D; Agrawal, Aneil F


    Genes in nematode and ascidian genomes frequently occur in operons--multiple genes sharing a common promoter to generate a polycistronic primary transcript--and such genes comprise 15-20% of the coding genome for Caenorhabditis elegans and Ciona intestinalis. Recent work in nematodes has demonstrated that the identity of genes within operons is highly conserved among species and that the unifying feature of genes within operons is that they are expressed in germline tissue. However, it is generally unknown what processes are responsible for generating the distribution of operon sizes across the genome, which are composed of up to eight genes per operon. Here we investigate several models for operon evolution to better understand their abundance, distribution of sizes, and evolutionary dynamics over time. We find that birth-death models of operon evolution reasonably describe the relative abundance of operons of different sizes in the C. elegans and Ciona genomes and generate predictions about the number of monocistronic, nonoperon genes that likely participate in the birth-death process. This theory, and applications to C. elegans and Ciona, motivates several new and testable hypotheses about eukaryote operon evolution.

  13. The structure of an unusual leghemoglobin gene from soybean

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wiborg, O; Hyldig-Nielsen, J J; Jensen, E O


    A clone containing an unusual leghemoglobin (Lb) gene was isolated from a soybean DNA library present in Charon 4A phage. DNA sequence analysis revealed that the isolated Lb gene has three intervening sequences (IVS-1, IVS-2 and IVS-3) located in the same positions as those found in other Lb genes....... Due to a large increase of IVS-2 and IVS-3, the isolated Lb gene is about twice the size of a normal Lb gene. The coding sequence derived from the DNA sequence corresponds to no known soybean Lb and attempts to find a corresponding mRNA failed. In addition, the 5'-flanking sequence of the Lb gene...

  14. Chromosomal mapping, gene structure and characterization of the human and murine RAB27B gene

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huxley Clare


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Rab GTPases are regulators of intracellular membrane traffic. The Rab27 subfamily consists of Rab27a and Rab27b. Rab27a has been recently implicated in Griscelli Disease, a disease combining partial albinism with severe immunodeficiency. Rab27a plays a key role in the function of lysosomal-like organelles such as melanosomes in melanocytes and lytic granules in cytotoxic T lymphocytes. Little is known about Rab27b. Results The human RAB27B gene is organised in six exons, spanning about 69 kb in the chromosome 18q21.1 region. Exon 1 is non-coding and is separated from the others by 49 kb of DNA and exon 6 contains a long 3' untranslated sequence (6.4 kb. The mouse Rab27b cDNA shows 95% identity with the human cDNA at the protein level and maps to mouse chromosome 18. The mouse mRNA was detected in stomach, large intestine, spleen and eye by RT-PCR, and in heart, brain, spleen and kidney by Northern blot. Transient over-expression of EGF-Rab27b fusion protein in cultured melanocytes revealed that Rab27b is associated with melanosomes, as observed for EGF-Rab27a. Conclusions Our results indicate that the Rab27 subfamily of Ras-like GTPases is highly conserved in mammals. There is high degree of conservation in sequence and gene structure between RAB27A and RAB27B genes. Exogenous expression of Rab27b in melanocytes results in melanosomal association as observed for Rab27a, suggesting the two Rab27 proteins are functional homologues. As with RAB27A in Griscelli Disease, RAB27B may be also associated with human disease mapping to chromosome 18.

  15. GeneViTo: Visualizing gene-product functional and structural features in genomic datasets

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Promponas Vasilis J


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The availability of increasing amounts of sequence data from completely sequenced genomes boosts the development of new computational methods for automated genome annotation and comparative genomics. Therefore, there is a need for tools that facilitate the visualization of raw data and results produced by bioinformatics analysis, providing new means for interactive genome exploration. Visual inspection can be used as a basis to assess the quality of various analysis algorithms and to aid in-depth genomic studies. Results GeneViTo is a JAVA-based computer application that serves as a workbench for genome-wide analysis through visual interaction. The application deals with various experimental information concerning both DNA and protein sequences (derived from public sequence databases or proprietary data sources and meta-data obtained by various prediction algorithms, classification schemes or user-defined features. Interaction with a Graphical User Interface (GUI allows easy extraction of genomic and proteomic data referring to the sequence itself, sequence features, or general structural and functional features. Emphasis is laid on the potential comparison between annotation and prediction data in order to offer a supplement to the provided information, especially in cases of "poor" annotation, or an evaluation of available predictions. Moreover, desired information can be output in high quality JPEG image files for further elaboration and scientific use. A compilation of properly formatted GeneViTo input data for demonstration is available to interested readers for two completely sequenced prokaryotes, Chlamydia trachomatis and Methanococcus jannaschii. Conclusions GeneViTo offers an inspectional view of genomic functional elements, concerning data stemming both from database annotation and analysis tools for an overall analysis of existing genomes. The application is compatible with Linux or Windows ME-2000-XP operating

  16. Geographic distance and mountain ranges structure freshwater protist communities on a European scalе


    Boenigk,Jens; Wodniok,Sabina; Bock,Christina; Beisser,Daniela; Hempel,Christopher; Grossmann,Lars; Lange,Anja; Jensen,Manfred


    Protists influence ecosystems by modulating microbial population size, diversity, metabolic outputs and gene flow. In this study we used eukaryotic ribosomal amplicon diversity from 218 European freshwater lakes sampled in August 2012 to assess the effect of mountain ranges as biogeographic barriers on spatial patterns and microbial community structure in European freshwaters. The diversity of microbial communities as reflected by amplicon clusters suggested that the eukaryotic microbial inve...

  17. The primary structures of two leghemoglobin genes from soybean

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hyldig-Nielsen, J J; Jensen, E O; Paludan, K


    We present the complete nucleotide sequences of two leghemoglobin genes isolated from soybean DNA. Both genes contain three intervening sequences which interrupt the two coding sequences in identical positions. The 5' and 3' flanking sequences in both genes contain conserved sequences similar to ...

  18. MADS-box gene evolution-structure and transcription patterns

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johansen, Bo; Pedersen, Louise B; Skipper, Martin


    This study presents a phylogenetic analysis of 198 MADS-box genes based on 420 parsimony-informative characters. The analysis includes only MIKC genes; therefore several genes from gymnosperms and pteridophytes are excluded. The strict consensus tree identifies all major monophyletic groups known...

  19. The structure and expression of normal and abnormal globin genes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bernards, R.A.; Flavell, R.A.; Grosveld, G.C.; Grosveld, F.G.; Kooter, J.M.; Boer, E. de


    Most mammalian genes are present as a single copy per haploid genome and hence comprise only about one part in 10⁶ of the total nuclear DNA. This fact impeded work on single-copy genes, but recently recombinant DNA technology and sensitive gene mapping has led to the elucidation of the

  20. An ensemble of B-DNA dinucleotide geometries lead to characteristic nucleosomal DNA structure and provide plasticity required for gene expression (United States)


    Background A nucleosome is the fundamental repeating unit of the eukaryotic chromosome. It has been shown that the positioning of a majority of nucleosomes is primarily controlled by factors other than the intrinsic preference of the DNA sequence. One of the key questions in this context is the role, if any, that can be played by the variability of nucleosomal DNA structure. Results In this study, we have addressed this question by analysing the variability at the dinucleotide and trinucleotide as well as longer length scales in a dataset of nucleosome X-ray crystal structures. We observe that the nucleosome structure displays remarkable local level structural versatility within the B-DNA family. The nucleosomal DNA also incorporates a large number of kinks. Conclusions Based on our results, we propose that the local and global level versatility of B-DNA structure may be a significant factor modulating the formation of nucleosomes in the vicinity of high-plasticity genes, and in varying the probability of binding by regulatory proteins. Hence, these factors should be incorporated in the prediction algorithms and there may not be a unique 'template' for predicting putative nucleosome sequences. In addition, the multimodal distribution of dinucleotide parameters for some steps and the presence of a large number of kinks in the nucleosomal DNA structure indicate that the linear elastic model, used by several algorithms to predict the energetic cost of nucleosome formation, may lead to incorrect results. PMID:21208404

  1. Interaction of triclosan with eukaryotic membrane lipids. (United States)

    Lygre, Henning; Moe, Grete; Skålevik, Rita; Holmsen, Holm


    The possibility that triclosan and PVM/MA (polyvinylmethyl ether/maleic acid) copolymer, additives to dentrifrices, could interact with eukaryotic membrane lipids was studied by two methods: first, by determining the pressure/molecular area isotherms at 37 degrees C of glycerophospholipid monolayers, using the Langmuir technique; and second, by phase-transition parameters in liposomes of the same lipids, using differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). Triclosan interacted, in a concentration-independent manner, with monolayers of saturated phosphatidylcholines (PC; i.e. markers of the outer membrane leaflet of eukaryotic cells). Triclosan and PVM/MA copolymer mixtures were shown to clearly interact in a concentration-dependent manner with PC. Triclosan was found to interact with liposomes of saturated and unsaturated phosphatidylcholines and phosphatidylserines (PS; i.e. markers of the inner membrane leaflet of eukaryotic cells), and saturated ethanolamines (PE; i.e. markers of the inner membrane leaflet of eukaryotic cells), resulting in a decrease of the lipid melting temperature (Tm). PVM/MA copolymer changed the Tm of PS, PC, and PE in different manners. By adding PVM/MA or triclosan-PVM/MA copolymer mixtures to 1-stearoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoserine (SOPS) no lipid transitions were detected. A biphasic change of the PC transition temperature resulted when triclosan or triclosan PVM/MA copolymer mixtures were added, indicating domain formation and change of the lipid polymorphism.

  2. Novel antifungal α-hairpinin peptide from Stellaria media seeds: structure, biosynthesis, gene structure and evolution. (United States)

    Slavokhotova, Anna A; Rogozhin, Eugene A; Musolyamov, Alexander K; Andreev, Yaroslav A; Oparin, Peter B; Berkut, Antonina A; Vassilevski, Alexander A; Egorov, Tsezi A; Grishin, Eugene V; Odintsova, Tatyana I


    Plant defense against disease is a complex multistage system involving initial recognition of the invading pathogen, signal transduction and activation of specialized genes. An important role in pathogen deterrence belongs to so-called plant defense peptides, small polypeptide molecules that present antimicrobial properties. Using multidimensional liquid chromatography, we isolated a novel antifungal peptide named Sm-AMP-X (33 residues) from the common chickweed (Stellaria media) seeds. The peptide sequence shows no homology to any previously described proteins. The peculiar cysteine arrangement (C(1)X3C(2)XnC(3)X3C(4)), however, allocates Sm-AMP-X to the recently acknowledged α-hairpinin family of plant defense peptides that share the helix-loop-helix fold stabilized by two disulfide bridges C(1)-C(4) and C(2)-C(3). Sm-AMP-X exhibits high broad-spectrum activity against fungal phytopathogens. We further showed that the N- and C-terminal "tail" regions of the peptide are important for both its structure and activity. The truncated variants Sm-AMP-X1 with both disulfide bonds preserved and Sm-AMP-X2 with only the internal S-S-bond left were progressively less active against fungi and presented largely disordered structure as opposed to the predominantly helical conformation of the full-length antifungal peptide. cDNA and gene cloning revealed that Sm-AMP-X is processed from a unique multimodular precursor protein that contains as many as 12 tandem repeats of α-hairpinin-like peptides. Structure of the sm-amp-x gene and two related pseudogenes sm-amp-x-ψ1 and sm-amp-x-ψ2 allows tracing the evolutionary scenario that led to generation of such a sophisticated precursor protein. Sm-AMP-X is a new promising candidate for engineering disease resistance in plants.

  3. Sponge non-metastatic Group I Nme gene/protein - structure and function is conserved from sponges to humans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ćetković Helena


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Nucleoside diphosphate kinases NDPK are evolutionarily conserved enzymes present in Bacteria, Archaea and Eukarya, with human Nme1 the most studied representative of the family and the first identified metastasis suppressor. Sponges (Porifera are simple metazoans without tissues, closest to the common ancestor of all animals. They changed little during evolution and probably provide the best insight into the metazoan ancestor's genomic features. Recent studies show that sponges have a wide repertoire of genes many of which are involved in diseases in more complex metazoans. The original function of those genes and the way it has evolved in the animal lineage is largely unknown. Here we report new results on the metastasis suppressor gene/protein homolog from the marine sponge Suberites domuncula, NmeGp1Sd. The purpose of this study was to investigate the properties of the sponge Group I Nme gene and protein, and compare it to its human homolog in order to elucidate the evolution of the structure and function of Nme. Results We found that sponge genes coding for Group I Nme protein are intron-rich. Furthermore, we discovered that the sponge NmeGp1Sd protein has a similar level of kinase activity as its human homolog Nme1, does not cleave negatively supercoiled DNA and shows nonspecific DNA-binding activity. The sponge NmeGp1Sd forms a hexamer, like human Nme1, and all other eukaryotic Nme proteins. NmeGp1Sd interacts with human Nme1 in human cells and exhibits the same subcellular localization. Stable clones expressing sponge NmeGp1Sd inhibited the migratory potential of CAL 27 cells, as already reported for human Nme1, which suggests that Nme's function in migratory processes was engaged long before the composition of true tissues. Conclusions This study suggests that the ancestor of all animals possessed a NmeGp1 protein with properties and functions similar to evolutionarily recent versions of the protein, even before the

  4. Sponge non-metastatic Group I Nme gene/protein - structure and function is conserved from sponges to humans (United States)


    Background Nucleoside diphosphate kinases NDPK are evolutionarily conserved enzymes present in Bacteria, Archaea and Eukarya, with human Nme1 the most studied representative of the family and the first identified metastasis suppressor. Sponges (Porifera) are simple metazoans without tissues, closest to the common ancestor of all animals. They changed little during evolution and probably provide the best insight into the metazoan ancestor's genomic features. Recent studies show that sponges have a wide repertoire of genes many of which are involved in diseases in more complex metazoans. The original function of those genes and the way it has evolved in the animal lineage is largely unknown. Here we report new results on the metastasis suppressor gene/protein homolog from the marine sponge Suberites domuncula, NmeGp1Sd. The purpose of this study was to investigate the properties of the sponge Group I Nme gene and protein, and compare it to its human homolog in order to elucidate the evolution of the structure and function of Nme. Results We found that sponge genes coding for Group I Nme protein are intron-rich. Furthermore, we discovered that the sponge NmeGp1Sd protein has a similar level of kinase activity as its human homolog Nme1, does not cleave negatively supercoiled DNA and shows nonspecific DNA-binding activity. The sponge NmeGp1Sd forms a hexamer, like human Nme1, and all other eukaryotic Nme proteins. NmeGp1Sd interacts with human Nme1 in human cells and exhibits the same subcellular localization. Stable clones expressing sponge NmeGp1Sd inhibited the migratory potential of CAL 27 cells, as already reported for human Nme1, which suggests that Nme's function in migratory processes was engaged long before the composition of true tissues. Conclusions This study suggests that the ancestor of all animals possessed a NmeGp1 protein with properties and functions similar to evolutionarily recent versions of the protein, even before the appearance of true tissues

  5. Analysis of genomic sequence motifs for deciphering transcription factor binding and transcriptional regulation in eukaryotic cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valentina eBoeva


    Full Text Available Eukaryotic genomes contain a variety of structured patterns: repetitive elements, binding sites of DNA and RNA associated proteins, splice sites and so on. Often, these structured patterns can be formalized as motifs and described using a proper mathematical model such as position weight matrix and IUPAC consensus. Two key tasks are typically carried out for motifs in the context of the analysis of genomic sequences. These are: identification in a set of DNA regions of over-represented motifs from a particular motif database, and de novo discovery of over-represented motifs. Here we describe existing methodology to perform these two tasks for motifs characterizing transcription factor binding. When applied to the output of ChIP-seq and ChIP-exo experiments, or to promoter regions of co-modulated genes, motif analysis techniques allow for the prediction of transcription factor binding events and enable identification of transcriptional regulators and co-regulators. The usefulness of motif analysis is further exemplified in this review by how motif discovery improves peak calling in ChIP-seq and ChIP-exo experiments and, when coupled with information on gene expression, allows insights into physical mechanisms of transcriptional modulation.

  6. Anaerobic energy metabolism in unicellular photosynthetic eukaryotes. (United States)

    Atteia, Ariane; van Lis, Robert; Tielens, Aloysius G M; Martin, William F


    Anaerobic metabolic pathways allow unicellular organisms to tolerate or colonize anoxic environments. Over the past ten years, genome sequencing projects have brought a new light on the extent of anaerobic metabolism in eukaryotes. A surprising development has been that free-living unicellular algae capable of photoautotrophic lifestyle are, in terms of their enzymatic repertoire, among the best equipped eukaryotes known when it comes to anaerobic energy metabolism. Some of these algae are marine organisms, common in the oceans, others are more typically soil inhabitants. All these species are important from the ecological (O(2)/CO(2) budget), biotechnological, and evolutionary perspectives. In the unicellular algae surveyed here, mixed-acid type fermentations are widespread while anaerobic respiration, which is more typical of eukaryotic heterotrophs, appears to be rare. The presence of a core anaerobic metabolism among the algae provides insights into its evolutionary origin, which traces to the eukaryote common ancestor. The predicted fermentative enzymes often exhibit an amino acid extension at the N-terminus, suggesting that these proteins might be compartmentalized in the cell, likely in the chloroplast or the mitochondrion. The green algae Chlamydomonas reinhardtii and Chlorella NC64 have the most extended set of fermentative enzymes reported so far. Among the eukaryotes with secondary plastids, the diatom Thalassiosira pseudonana has the most pronounced anaerobic capabilities as yet. From the standpoints of genomic, transcriptomic, and biochemical studies, anaerobic energy metabolism in C. reinhardtii remains the best characterized among photosynthetic protists. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: The evolutionary aspects of bioenergetic systems. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Eukaryotic cells and their cell bodies: Cell Theory revised. (United States)

    Baluska, Frantisek; Volkmann, Dieter; Barlow, Peter W


    Cell Theory, also known as cell doctrine, states that all eukaryotic organisms are composed of cells, and that cells are the smallest independent units of life. This Cell Theory has been influential in shaping the biological sciences ever since, in 1838/1839, the botanist Matthias Schleiden and the zoologist Theodore Schwann stated the principle that cells represent the elements from which all plant and animal tissues are constructed. Some 20 years later, in a famous aphorism Omnis cellula e cellula, Rudolf Virchow annunciated that all cells arise only from pre-existing cells. General acceptance of Cell Theory was finally possible only when the cellular nature of brain tissues was confirmed at the end of the 20th century. Cell Theory then rapidly turned into a more dogmatic cell doctrine, and in this form survives up to the present day. In its current version, however, the generalized Cell Theory developed for both animals and plants is unable to accommodate the supracellular nature of higher plants, which is founded upon a super-symplasm of interconnected cells into which is woven apoplasm, symplasm and super-apoplasm. Furthermore, there are numerous examples of multinucleate coenocytes and syncytia found throughout the eukaryote superkingdom posing serious problems for the current version of Cell Theory. To cope with these problems, we here review data which conform to the original proposal of Daniel Mazia that the eukaryotic cell is composed of an elemental Cell Body whose structure is smaller than the cell and which is endowed with all the basic attributes of a living entity. A complement to the Cell Body is the Cell Periphery Apparatus, which consists of the plasma membrane associated with other periphery structures. Importantly, boundary structures of the Cell Periphery Apparatus, although capable of some self-assembly, are largely produced and maintained by Cell Body activities and can be produced from it de novo. These boundary structures serve not only as

  8. Modelling and structural characteristics analysis of gene networks for prostate cancer. (United States)

    Zhang, Yulin; Wang, Shudong; Meng, Dazhi


    Analysing structure of gene networks is an important way to understand regulatory mechanisms of organism at the molecular level. In this work, gene mutual information networks are constructed based on gene expression profiles in prostate tissues with and without cancer. In order to contrast structural difference of normal and diseased networks, curves of four structural parameters are given with the change of thresholds. Then threshold discrimination intervals and discrimination weights are defined. A method of finding structural key genes with significant degree-difference is proposed. The finding of key genes will help the biomedical scientists to further research the pathogenesis of prostate cancer. Finally randomisation test is performed to prove that these structural parameters can distinguish normal and prostate cancer in their structures compared with these results in real data.

  9. Spontaneous gene flow and population structure in wild and cultivated chicory, Cichorium intybus L.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kiaer, L.P.; Felber, F.; Flavell, A.; Guadagnuola, R.; Guiatti, D.; Hauser, T.P.; Olivieri, A.M.; Scotti, I.; Syed, N.; Vischi, M.; Wiel, van de C.C.M.; Jorgensen, R.B.


    Spontaneous gene flow between wild and cultivated chicory, Cichorium intybus L., may have implications for the genetic structure and evolution of populations and varieties. One aspect of this crop-wild gene flow is the dispersal of transgenes from genetically modified varieties, e.g. gene flow from

  10. Structure, tissue distribution, and chromosomal localization of the prepronociceptin gene. (United States)

    Mollereau, C; Simons, M J; Soularue, P; Liners, F; Vassart, G; Meunier, J C; Parmentier, M


    Nociceptin (orphanin FQ), the newly discovered natural agonist of opioid receptor-like (ORL1) receptor, is a neuropeptide that is endowed with pronociceptive activity in vivo. Nociceptin is derived from a larger precursor, prepronociceptin (PPNOC), whose human, mouse, and rat genes we have now isolated. The PPNOC gene is highly conserved in the three species and displays organizational features that are strikingly similar to those of the genes of preproenkephalin, preprodynorphin, and preproopiomelanocortin, the precursors to endogenous opioid peptides, suggesting the four genes belong to the same family-i.e., have a common evolutionary origin. The PPNOC gene encodes a single copy of nociceptin as well as of other peptides whose sequence is strictly conserved across murine and human species; hence it is likely to be neurophysiologically significant. Northern blot analysis shows that the PPNOC gene is predominantly transcribed in the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) and, albeit weakly, in the ovary, the sole peripheral organ expressing the gene. By using a radiation hybrid cell line panel, the PPNOC gene was mapped to the short arm of human chromosome 8 (8p21), between sequence-tagged site markers WI-5833 and WI-1172, in close proximity of the locus encoding the neurofilament light chain NEFL. Analysis of yeast artificial chromosome clones belonging to the WC8.4 contig covering the 8p21 region did not allow to detect the presence of the gene on these yeast artificial chromosomes, suggesting a gap in the coverage within this contig.

  11. Origin of phagotrophic eukaryotes as social cheaters in microbial biofilms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jékely Gáspár


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The origin of eukaryotic cells was one of the most dramatic evolutionary transitions in the history of life. It is generally assumed that eukaryotes evolved later then prokaryotes by the transformation or fusion of prokaryotic lineages. However, as yet there is no consensus regarding the nature of the prokaryotic group(s ancestral to eukaryotes. Regardless of this, a hardly debatable fundamental novel characteristic of the last eukaryotic common ancestor was the ability to exploit prokaryotic biomass by the ingestion of entire cells, i.e. phagocytosis. The recent advances in our understanding of the social life of prokaryotes may help to explain the origin of this form of total exploitation. Presentation of the hypothesis Here I propose that eukaryotic cells originated in a social environment, a differentiated microbial mat or biofilm that was maintained by the cooperative action of its members. Cooperation was costly (e.g. the production of developmental signals or an extracellular matrix but yielded benefits that increased the overall fitness of the social group. I propose that eukaryotes originated as selfish cheaters that enjoyed the benefits of social aggregation but did not contribute to it themselves. The cheaters later evolved into predators that lysed other cells and eventually became professional phagotrophs. During several cycles of social aggregation and dispersal the number of cheaters was contained by a chicken game situation, i.e. reproductive success of cheaters was high when they were in low abundance but was reduced when they were over-represented. Radical changes in cell structure, including the loss of the rigid prokaryotic cell wall and the development of endomembranes, allowed the protoeukaryotes to avoid cheater control and to exploit nutrients more efficiently. Cellular changes were buffered by both the social benefits and the protective physico-chemical milieu of the interior of biofilms. Symbiosis

  12. Positive selection for unpreferred codon usage in eukaryotic genomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Galagan James E


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Natural selection has traditionally been understood as a force responsible for pushing genes to states of higher translational efficiency, whereas lower translational efficiency has been explained by neutral mutation and genetic drift. We looked for evidence of directional selection resulting in increased unpreferred codon usage (and presumably reduced translational efficiency in three divergent clusters of eukaryotic genomes using a simple optimal-codon-based metric (Kp/Ku. Results Here we show that for some genes natural selection is indeed responsible for causing accelerated unpreferred codon substitution, and document the scope of this selection. In Cryptococcus and to a lesser extent Drosophila, we find many genes showing a statistically significant signal of selection for unpreferred codon usage in one or more lineages. We did not find evidence for this type of selection in Saccharomyces. The signal of positive selection observed from unpreferred synonymous codon substitutions is coincident in Cryptococcus and Drosophila with the distribution of upstream open reading frames (uORFs, another genic feature known to reduce translational efficiency. Functional enrichment analysis of genes exhibiting low Kp/Ku ratios reveals that genes in regulatory roles are particularly subject to this type of selection. Conclusion Through genome-wide scans, we find recent selection for unpreferred codon usage at approximately 1% of genetic loci in a Cryptococcus and several genes in Drosophila. Unpreferred codons can impede translation efficiency, and we find that genes with translation-impeding uORFs are enriched for this selection signal. We find that regulatory genes are particularly likely to be subject to selection for unpreferred codon usage. Given that expression noise can propagate through regulatory cascades, and that low translational efficiency can reduce expression noise, this finding supports the hypothesis that translational

  13. Phylogenetic analysis of P5 P-type ATPases, a eukaryotic lineage of secretory pathway pumps

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Møller, Annette B; Asp, Torben; Holm, Preben Bach


    Eukaryotes encompass a remarkable variety of organisms and unresolved lineages. Different phylogenetic analyses have lead to conflicting conclusions as to the origin and associations between lineages and species. In this work, we investigated evolutionary relationship of a family of cation pumps ...... far, while P5B ATPases appear to be lost in three eukaryotic lineages; excavates, entamoebas and land plants. A lineage-specific gene expansion of up to four different P5B ATPases is seen in animals....

  14. Genome-wide identification of structural variants in genes encoding drug targets

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Henrik Berg; Dahmcke, Christina Mackeprang


    The objective of the present study was to identify structural variants of drug target-encoding genes on a genome-wide scale. We also aimed at identifying drugs that are potentially amenable for individualization of treatments based on knowledge about structural variation in the genes encoding...

  15. Associating transcription factors and conserved RNA structures with gene regulation in the human brain

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hecker, Nikolai; Seemann, Stefan E.; Silahtaroglu, Asli


    Anatomical subdivisions of the human brain can be associated with different neuronal functions. This functional diversification is reflected by differences in gene expression. By analyzing post-mortem gene expression data from the Allen Brain Atlas, we investigated the impact of transcription...... factors (TF) and RNA secondary structures on the regulation of gene expression in the human brain. First, we modeled the expression of a gene as a linear combination of the expression of TFs. We devised an approach to select robust TF-gene interactions and to determine localized contributions to gene...

  16. Genetic variation and population structure of interleukin genes ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    morphisms (SNPs: IL-1A 4845, IL-1B 3954, IL-1B 511 and IL-1RA 2018) of the interleukin gene cluster. .... Two genes of the interleukin cluster, IL − 1α .... arate branch. Lingayats as a caste group originated approx- imately 800 years ago, largely from the agricultural class, and over time, this caste has absorbed members ...

  17. The genomic structure of the DMBT1 gene

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mollenhauer, J; Holmskov, U; Wiemann, S


    , and in gastrointestinal and lung cancers. Based on these properties, DMBT1 has been proposed to be a candidate tumour suppressor gene. We have determined the genomic sequence of DMBT1 to allow analyses of mutations. The gene has at least 54 exons that span a genomic region of about 80 kb. We have identified a putative...

  18. The language of methylation in genomics of eukaryotes. (United States)

    Volpe, P


    Background studies have shown that 6-methylaminopurine (m6A) and 5-methylcytosine (m5C), detected in DNA, are products of its post-synthetic modification. At variance with bacterial genomes exhibiting both, eukaryotic genomes essentially carry only m5C in m5CpG doublets. This served to establish that, although a slight extra-S phase asymmetric methylation occurs de novo on 5'-CpC-3'/3'GpG-5', 5'-CpT-3'/3'-GpA-5', and 5'-CpA-3'/3'-GpT-5' dinucleotide pairs, a heavy methylation during S involves Okazaki fragments and thus semiconservatively newly made chains to guarantee genetic maintenance of -CH3 patterns in symmetrically dimethylated 5'-m5CpG-3'/3'-Gpm5C-5' dinucleotide pairs. On the other hand, whilst inverse correlation was observed between bulk DNA methylation, in S, and bulk RNA transcription, in G1 and G2, probes of methylated DNA helped to discover the presence of coding (exon) and uncoding (intron) sequences in the eukaryotic gene. These achievements led to the search for a language that genes regulated by methylation should have in common. Such a deciphering, initially providing restriction minimaps of hypermethylatable promoters and introns vs. hypomethylable exons, became feasible when bisulfite methodology allowed the direct sequencing of m5C. It emerged that, while in lymphocytes, where the transglutaminase gene (hTGc) is inactive, the promoter shows two fully methylated CpG-rich domains at 5 and one fully unmethylated CpG-rich domain at 3' (including the site +1 and a 5'-UTR), in HUVEC cells, where hTGc is active, in the first CpG-rich domain of its promoter four CpGs lack -CH3: a result suggesting new hypotheses on the mechanism of transcription, particularly in connection with radio-induced DNA demethylation.

  19. Gene structure, phylogeny and expression profile of the sucrose synthase gene family in cacao (Theobroma cacao L.). (United States)

    Li, Fupeng; Hao, Chaoyun; Yan, Lin; Wu, Baoduo; Qin, Xiaowei; Lai, Jianxiong; Song, Yinghui


    In higher plants, sucrose synthase (Sus, EC is widely considered as a key enzyme involved in sucrose metabolism. Although, several paralogous genes encoding different isozymes of Sus have been identified and characterized in multiple plant genomes, to date detailed information about the Sus genes is lacking for cacao. This study reports the identification of six novel Sus genes from economically important cacao tree. Analyses of the gene structure and phylogeny of the Sus genes demonstrated evolutionary conservation in the Sus family across cacao and other plant species. The expression of cacao Sus genes was investigated via real-time PCR in various tissues, different developmental phases of leaf, flower bud and pod. The Sus genes exhibited distinct but partially redundant expression profiles in cacao, with TcSus1, TcSus5 and TcSus6, being the predominant genes in the bark with phloem, TcSus2 predominantly expressing in the seed during the stereotype stage. TcSus3 and TcSus4 were significantly detected more in the pod husk and seed coat along the pod development, and showed development dependent expression profiles in the cacao pod. These results provide new insights into the evolution, and basic information that will assist in elucidating the functions of cacao Sus gene family.

  20. Gene Structures, Evolution and Transcriptional Profiling of the WRKY Gene Family in Castor Bean (Ricinus communis L.). (United States)

    Zou, Zhi; Yang, Lifu; Wang, Danhua; Huang, Qixing; Mo, Yeyong; Xie, Guishui


    WRKY proteins comprise one of the largest transcription factor families in plants and form key regulators of many plant processes. This study presents the characterization of 58 WRKY genes from the castor bean (Ricinus communis L., Euphorbiaceae) genome. Compared with the automatic genome annotation, one more WRKY-encoding locus was identified and 20 out of the 57 predicted gene models were manually corrected. All RcWRKY genes were shown to contain at least one intron in their coding sequences. According to the structural features of the present WRKY domains, the identified RcWRKY genes were assigned to three previously defined groups (I-III). Although castor bean underwent no recent whole-genome duplication event like physic nut (Jatropha curcas L., Euphorbiaceae), comparative genomics analysis indicated that one gene loss, one intron loss and one recent proximal duplication occurred in the RcWRKY gene family. The expression of all 58 RcWRKY genes was supported by ESTs and/or RNA sequencing reads derived from roots, leaves, flowers, seeds and endosperms. Further global expression profiles with RNA sequencing data revealed diverse expression patterns among various tissues. Results obtained from this study not only provide valuable information for future functional analysis and utilization of the castor bean WRKY genes, but also provide a useful reference to investigate the gene family expansion and evolution in Euphorbiaceus plants.

  1. Gene Structures, Evolution and Transcriptional Profiling of the WRKY Gene Family in Castor Bean (Ricinus communis L..

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhi Zou

    Full Text Available WRKY proteins comprise one of the largest transcription factor families in plants and form key regulators of many plant processes. This study presents the characterization of 58 WRKY genes from the castor bean (Ricinus communis L., Euphorbiaceae genome. Compared with the automatic genome annotation, one more WRKY-encoding locus was identified and 20 out of the 57 predicted gene models were manually corrected. All RcWRKY genes were shown to contain at least one intron in their coding sequences. According to the structural features of the present WRKY domains, the identified RcWRKY genes were assigned to three previously defined groups (I-III. Although castor bean underwent no recent whole-genome duplication event like physic nut (Jatropha curcas L., Euphorbiaceae, comparative genomics analysis indicated that one gene loss, one intron loss and one recent proximal duplication occurred in the RcWRKY gene family. The expression of all 58 RcWRKY genes was supported by ESTs and/or RNA sequencing reads derived from roots, leaves, flowers, seeds and endosperms. Further global expression profiles with RNA sequencing data revealed diverse expression patterns among various tissues. Results obtained from this study not only provide valuable information for future functional analysis and utilization of the castor bean WRKY genes, but also provide a useful reference to investigate the gene family expansion and evolution in Euphorbiaceus plants.

  2. The Future of Multiplexed Eukaryotic Genome Engineering. (United States)

    Thompson, David B; Aboulhouda, Soufiane; Hysolli, Eriona; Smith, Cory J; Wang, Stan; Castanon, Oscar; Church, George M


    Multiplex genome editing is the simultaneous introduction of multiple distinct modifications to a given genome. Though in its infancy, maturation of this field will facilitate powerful new biomedical research approaches and will enable a host of far-reaching biological engineering applications, including new therapeutic modalities and industrial applications, as well as "genome writing" and de-extinction efforts. In this Perspective, we focus on multiplex editing of large eukaryotic genomes. We describe the current state of multiplexed genome editing, the current limits of our ability to multiplex edits, and provide perspective on the many applications that fully realized multiplex editing technologies would enable in higher eukaryotic genomes. We offer a broad look at future directions, covering emergent CRISPR-based technologies, advances in intracellular delivery, and new DNA assembly approaches that may enable future genome editing on a massively multiplexed scale.

  3. Promiscuous DNA: horizontal transfer of transposable elements and why it matters for eukaryotic evolution


    Schaack, Sarah; Gilbert, Clément; Feschotte, Cédric


    Horizontal transfer is the passage of genetic material between genomes by means other than parent-to-offspring inheritance. Although the transfer of genes is thought to be crucial in prokaryotic evolution, few instances of horizontal gene transfer have been reported in multicellular eukaryotes; instead, most cases involve transposable elements. With over 200 cases now documented, it is possible to assess the importance of horizontal transfer for the evolution of transposable elements and thei...

  4. Release of hyaluronate from eukaryotic cells.


    Prehm, P


    The mechanism of hyaluronate shedding from eukaryotic cell lines was analysed. All cell lines shed identical sizes of hyaluronate as were retained on the surface. They differed in the amount of hyaluronate synthesized and in the proportions of hyaluronate which were released and retained. A method was developed which could discriminate between shedding due to intramolecular degradation and that due to dissociation as intact macromolecules. This method was applied to B6 and SV3T3 cells in orde...

  5. Eukaryotic plankton diversity in the sunlit ocean


    Vargas, Colomban de; Audic, Stéphane; Henry, Nicolas; Decelle, Johan; Mahé, Frédéric; Logares, Ramiro; Lara, Enrique; Berney, Cédric; Le Bescot, Noan; Probert, Ian; Carmichael, Margaux; Poulain, Julie; Romac, Sarah; Colin, Sébastien; Aury, Jean-Marc


    Marine plankton support global biological and geochemical processes. Surveys of their biodiversity have hitherto been geographically restricted and have not accounted for the full range of plankton size. We assessed eukaryotic diversity from 334 size-fractionated photic-zone plankton communities collected across tropical and temperate oceans during the circumglobal Tara Oceans expedition. We analyzed 18S ribosomal DNA sequences across the intermediate plankton-size spectrum from the smallest ...

  6. Mechanism of chromosomal DNA replication initiation and replication fork stabilization in eukaryotes. (United States)

    Wu, LiHong; Liu, Yang; Kong, DaoChun


    Chromosomal DNA replication is one of the central biological events occurring inside cells. Due to its large size, the replication of genomic DNA in eukaryotes initiates at hundreds to tens of thousands of sites called DNA origins so that the replication could be completed in a limited time. Further, eukaryotic DNA replication is sophisticatedly regulated, and this regulation guarantees that each origin fires once per S phase and each segment of DNA gets duplication also once per cell cycle. The first step of replication initiation is the assembly of pre-replication complex (pre-RC). Since 1973, four proteins, Cdc6/Cdc18, MCM, ORC and Cdt1, have been extensively studied and proved to be pre-RC components. Recently, a novel pre-RC component called Sap1/Girdin was identified. Sap1/Girdin is required for loading Cdc18/Cdc6 to origins for pre-RC assembly in the fission yeast and human cells, respectively. At the transition of G1 to S phase, pre-RC is activated by the two kinases, cyclindependent kinase (CDK) and Dbf4-dependent kinase (DDK), and subsequently, RPA, primase-polα, PCNA, topoisomerase, Cdc45, polδ, and polɛ are recruited to DNA origins for creating two bi-directional replication forks and initiating DNA replication. As replication forks move along chromatin DNA, they frequently stall due to the presence of a great number of replication barriers on chromatin DNA, such as secondary DNA structures, protein/DNA complexes, DNA lesions, gene transcription. Stalled forks must require checkpoint regulation for their stabilization. Otherwise, stalled forks will collapse, which results in incomplete DNA replication and genomic instability. This short review gives a concise introduction regarding the current understanding of replication initiation and replication fork stabilization.

  7. Protein Phylogenies and Signature Sequences: A Reappraisal of Evolutionary Relationships among Archaebacteria, Eubacteria, and Eukaryotes (United States)

    Gupta, Radhey S.


    The presence of shared conserved insertion or deletions (indels) in protein sequences is a special type of signature sequence that shows considerable promise for phylogenetic inference. An alternative model of microbial evolution based on the use of indels of conserved proteins and the morphological features of prokaryotic organisms is proposed. In this model, extant archaebacteria and gram-positive bacteria, which have a simple, single-layered cell wall structure, are termed monoderm prokaryotes. They are believed to be descended from the most primitive organisms. Evidence from indels supports the view that the archaebacteria probably evolved from gram-positive bacteria, and I suggest that this evolution occurred in response to antibiotic selection pressures. Evidence is presented that diderm prokaryotes (i.e., gram-negative bacteria), which have a bilayered cell wall, are derived from monoderm prokaryotes. Signature sequences in different proteins provide a means to define a number of different taxa within prokaryotes (namely, low G+C and high G+C gram-positive, Deinococcus-Thermus, cyanobacteria, chlamydia-cytophaga related, and two different groups of Proteobacteria) and to indicate how they evolved from a common ancestor. Based on phylogenetic information from indels in different protein sequences, it is hypothesized that all eukaryotes, including amitochondriate and aplastidic organisms, received major gene contributions from both an archaebacterium and a gram-negative eubacterium. In this model, the ancestral eukaryotic cell is a chimera that resulted from a unique fusion event between the two separate groups of prokaryotes followed by integration of their genomes. PMID:9841678

  8. Evolution, functional divergence and conserved exon-intron structure of bHLH/PAS gene family. (United States)

    Yan, Jun; Ma, Zhaowu; Xu, Xiaopeng; Guo, An-Yuan


    bHLH/PAS genes encode a family of basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) transcription factors with bHLH, PAS and PAS_3 domain. bHLH/PAS genes are involved in many essential physiological and developmental processes, such as hypoxic response neural development, the circadian clock, and learning ability. Despite their important functions, the origin and evolution of this bHLH/PAS gene family has yet to be elucidated. In this study, we aim to explore the origin, evolution, gene structure conservation of this gene family and provide a model to analyze the evolution of other gene families. Our results show that genes of the bHLH/PAS family only exist in metazoans. They may have originated from the common ancestor of metazoans and expanded into vertebrates. We identified bHLH/PAS genes in more than ten species representing the main lineages and constructed the phylogenetic trees (Beyasian, ML and NJ) to classify them into three groups. The exon-intron structure analysis revealed that a relatively conserved "1001-0210" eight-exon structure exists in most groups and lineages. In addition, we found the exon fusion pattern in several groups in this conserved eight-exon structure. Further analysis indicated that bHLH/PAS protein paralogs evolved from several gene duplication events followed by functional divergence and purifying selection. We presented a phylogenetic model to describe the evolutionary history of the exon structures of bHLH/PAS genes. Taken together, our study revealed the evolutionary model, functional divergence and gene structure conservation of bHLH/PAS genes. These findings provide clues for the functional and evolutionary mechanism of bHLH/PAS genes.

  9. Arsenic and Antimony Transporters in Eukaryotes (United States)

    Maciaszczyk-Dziubinska, Ewa; Wawrzycka, Donata; Wysocki, Robert


    Arsenic and antimony are toxic metalloids, naturally present in the environment and all organisms have developed pathways for their detoxification. The most effective metalloid tolerance systems in eukaryotes include downregulation of metalloid uptake, efflux out of the cell, and complexation with phytochelatin or glutathione followed by sequestration into the vacuole. Understanding of arsenic and antimony transport system is of high importance due to the increasing usage of arsenic-based drugs in the treatment of certain types of cancer and diseases caused by protozoan parasites as well as for the development of bio- and phytoremediation strategies for metalloid polluted areas. However, in contrast to prokaryotes, the knowledge about specific transporters of arsenic and antimony and the mechanisms of metalloid transport in eukaryotes has been very limited for a long time. Here, we review the recent advances in understanding of arsenic and antimony transport pathways in eukaryotes, including a dual role of aquaglyceroporins in uptake and efflux of metalloids, elucidation of arsenic transport mechanism by the yeast Acr3 transporter and its role in arsenic hyperaccumulation in ferns, identification of vacuolar transporters of arsenic-phytochelatin complexes in plants and forms of arsenic substrates recognized by mammalian ABC transporters. PMID:22489166

  10. Arsenic and antimony transporters in eukaryotes. (United States)

    Maciaszczyk-Dziubinska, Ewa; Wawrzycka, Donata; Wysocki, Robert


    Arsenic and antimony are toxic metalloids, naturally present in the environment and all organisms have developed pathways for their detoxification. The most effective metalloid tolerance systems in eukaryotes include downregulation of metalloid uptake, efflux out of the cell, and complexation with phytochelatin or glutathione followed by sequestration into the vacuole. Understanding of arsenic and antimony transport system is of high importance due to the increasing usage of arsenic-based drugs in the treatment of certain types of cancer and diseases caused by protozoan parasites as well as for the development of bio- and phytoremediation strategies for metalloid polluted areas. However, in contrast to prokaryotes, the knowledge about specific transporters of arsenic and antimony and the mechanisms of metalloid transport in eukaryotes has been very limited for a long time. Here, we review the recent advances in understanding of arsenic and antimony transport pathways in eukaryotes, including a dual role of aquaglyceroporins in uptake and efflux of metalloids, elucidation of arsenic transport mechanism by the yeast Acr3 transporter and its role in arsenic hyperaccumulation in ferns, identification of vacuolar transporters of arsenic-phytochelatin complexes in plants and forms of arsenic substrates recognized by mammalian ABC transporters.

  11. Enzymes from Higher Eukaryotes for Industrial Biocatalysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhibin Liu


    Full Text Available The industrial production of fine chemicals, feed and food ingredients, pharmaceuticals, agrochemicals and their respective intermediates relies on an increasing application of biocatalysis, i.e. on enzyme or whole-cell catalyzed conversions of molecules. Simple procedures for discovery, cloning and over-expression as well as fast growth favour fungi, yeasts and especially bacteria as sources of biocatalysts. Higher eukaryotes also harbour an almost unlimited number of potential biocatalysts, although to date the limited supply of enzymes, the high heterogeneity of enzyme preparations and the hazard of infectious contaminants keep some interesting candidates out of reach for industrial bioprocesses. In the past only a few animal and plant enzymes from agricultural waste materials were employed in food processing. The use of bacterial expression strains or non-conventional yeasts for the heterologous production of efficient eukaryotic enzymes can overcome the bottleneck in enzyme supply and provide sufficient amounts of homogenous enzyme preparations for reliable and economically feasible applications at large scale. Ideal enzymatic processes represent an environmentally friendly, »near-to-completion« conversion of (mostly non-natural substrates to pure products. Recent developments demonstrate the commercial feasibility of large-scale biocatalytic processes employing enzymes from higher eukaryotes (e.g. plants, animals and also their usefulness in some small-scale industrial applications.

  12. Eukaryotic RNA polymerase subunit RPB8 is a new relative of the OB family. (United States)

    Krapp, S; Kelly, G; Reischl, J; Weinzierl, R O; Matthews, S


    RNA polymerase II subunit RPB8 is an essential subunit that is highly conserved throughout eukaryotic evolution and is present in all three types of nuclear RNA polymerases. We report the first high resolution structural insight into eukaryotic RNA polymerase architecture with the solution structure of RPB8 from Saccharomyces cerevisiae. It consists of an eight stranded, antiparallel beta-barrel, four short helical regions and a large, unstructured omega-loop. The strands are connected in classic Greek-key fashion. The overall topology is unusual and contains a striking C2 rotational symmetry. Furthermore, it is most likely a novel associate of the oligonucleotide/oligosaccharide (OB) binding protein class.

  13. Functional and phylogenetic evidence of a bacterial origin for the first enzyme in sphingolipid biosynthesis in a phylum of eukaryotic protozoan parasites. (United States)

    Mina, John G; Thye, Julie K; Alqaisi, Amjed Q I; Bird, Louise E; Dods, Robert H; Grøftehauge, Morten K; Mosely, Jackie A; Pratt, Steven; Shams-Eldin, Hosam; Schwarz, Ralph T; Pohl, Ehmke; Denny, Paul W


    Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate, intracellular eukaryotic apicomplexan protozoan parasite that can cause fetal damage and abortion in both animals and humans. Sphingolipids are essential and ubiquitous components of eukaryotic membranes that are both synthesized and scavenged by the Apicomplexa. Here we report the identification, isolation, and analyses of the Toxoplasma serine palmitoyltransferase, an enzyme catalyzing the first and rate-limiting step in sphingolipid biosynthesis: the condensation of serine and palmitoyl-CoA. In all eukaryotes analyzed to date, serine palmitoyltransferase is a highly conserved heterodimeric enzyme complex. However, biochemical and structural analyses demonstrated the apicomplexan orthologue to be a functional, homodimeric serine palmitoyltransferase localized to the endoplasmic reticulum. Furthermore, phylogenetic studies indicated that it was evolutionarily related to the prokaryotic serine palmitoyltransferase, identified in the Sphingomonadaceae as a soluble homodimeric enzyme. Therefore this enzyme, conserved throughout the Apicomplexa, is likely to have been obtained via lateral gene transfer from a prokaryote. © 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  14. N6-adenine DNA methylation demystified in eukaryotic genome: From biology to pathology. (United States)

    Parashar, Nidarshana Chaturvedi; Parashar, Gaurav; Nayyar, Harsh; Sandhir, Rajat


    N6-methyl-2'-deoxyadenosine (m6dA) is a well characterized DNA modification in prokaryotes. Its existence in eukaryotic DNA remained doubtful until recently. Evidence suggests that the m6dA levels decrease with the increasing complexity of eukaryotic genomes. Analysis of m6dA levels in genome of lower eukaryotes reveals its role in gene regulation, nucleosome positioning and early development. In higher eukaryotes m6dA is enriched in nongenic region compared to genic region, preferentially in chromosome X and 13 suggesting a chromosome bias. High levels of m6dA during embryogenesis as compared to adult tissues are indicative of its importance during development and possible association with regeneration capabilities. Further, decreased levels of m6dA in diabetic patients has been correlated with expression of Fat mass and obesity-associated (FTO) which acts as m6A demethylase. m6dA levels have also been reported to be decreased in different types of cancers. The present review highlights the role of m6dA modification in eukaryotic genomes and its functional importance in regulation of physiological and pathological processes. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. and Société Française de Biochimie et Biologie Moléculaire (SFBBM). All rights reserved.

  15. Comparative genomics of eukaryotic small nucleolar RNAs reveals deep evolutionary ancestry amidst ongoing intragenomic mobility

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    Hoeppner Marc P


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Small nucleolar (snoRNAs are required for posttranscriptional processing and modification of ribosomal, spliceosomal and messenger RNAs. Their presence in both eukaryotes and archaea indicates that snoRNAs are evolutionarily ancient. The location of some snoRNAs within the introns of ribosomal protein genes has been suggested to belie an RNA world origin, with the exons of the earliest protein-coding genes having evolved around snoRNAs after the advent of templated protein synthesis. Alternatively, this intronic location may reflect more recent selection for coexpression of snoRNAs and ribosomal components, ensuring rRNA modification by snoRNAs during ribosome synthesis. To gain insight into the evolutionary origins of this genetic organization, we examined the antiquity of snoRNA families and the stability of their genomic location across 44 eukaryote genomes. Results We report that dozens of snoRNA families are traceable to the Last Eukaryotic Common Ancestor (LECA, but find only weak similarities between the oldest eukaryotic snoRNAs and archaeal snoRNA-like genes. Moreover, many of these LECA snoRNAs are located within the introns of host genes independently traceable to the LECA. Comparative genomic analyses reveal the intronic location of LECA snoRNAs is not ancestral however, suggesting the pattern we observe is the result of ongoing intragenomic mobility. Analysis of human transcriptome data indicates that the primary requirement for hosting intronic snoRNAs is a broad expression profile. Consistent with ongoing mobility across broadly-expressed genes, we report a case of recent migration of a non-LECA snoRNA from the intron of a ubiquitously expressed non-LECA host gene into the introns of two LECA genes during the evolution of primates. Conclusions Our analyses show that snoRNAs were a well-established family of RNAs at the time when eukaryotes began to diversify. While many are intronic, this association is not

  16. Structure and expression of the chicken calmodulin I gene

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ye, Q; Berchtold, M W


    The chicken calmodulin I (CaMI) gene has been isolated and characterized on the level of cDNA and genomic DNA. The deduced amino acid (aa) sequence is identical to the one of chicken CaMII which consists of 148 aa. The CaMI gene contains six exons. Its intron/exon organization is identical...... to that of the chicken CaMII and the CaMI and CaMIII genes of rat and human. Expression of the CaMI gene was detected in all chicken tissues examined, although at varying levels. The gene is transcribed into four mRNAs of 0.8, 1.4, 1.7 and 4.4 kb as determined by Northern blot analysis. Our results demonstrate...... that the "multigene-one-protein" principle of CaM synthesis is not only applicable to mammals whose CaM is encoded by three different genes, but also to chickens....

  17. Growth control of the eukaryote cell: a systems biology study in yeast

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    Castrillo Juan I


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Cell growth underlies many key cellular and developmental processes, yet a limited number of studies have been carried out on cell-growth regulation. Comprehensive studies at the transcriptional, proteomic and metabolic levels under defined controlled conditions are currently lacking. Results Metabolic control analysis is being exploited in a systems biology study of the eukaryotic cell. Using chemostat culture, we have measured the impact of changes in flux (growth rate on the transcriptome, proteome, endometabolome and exometabolome of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Each functional genomic level shows clear growth-rate-associated trends and discriminates between carbon-sufficient and carbon-limited conditions. Genes consistently and significantly upregulated with increasing growth rate are frequently essential and encode evolutionarily conserved proteins of known function that participate in many protein-protein interactions. In contrast, more unknown, and fewer essential, genes are downregulated with increasing growth rate; their protein products rarely interact with one another. A large proportion of yeast genes under positive growth-rate control share orthologs with other eukaryotes, including humans. Significantly, transcription of genes encoding components of the TOR complex (a major controller of eukaryotic cell growth is not subject to growth-rate regulation. Moreover, integrative studies reveal the extent and importance of post-transcriptional control, patterns of control of metabolic fluxes at the level of enzyme synthesis, and the relevance of specific enzymatic reactions in the control of metabolic fluxes during cell growth. Conclusion This work constitutes a first comprehensive systems biology study on growth-rate control in the eukaryotic cell. The results have direct implications for advanced studies on cell growth, in vivo regulation of metabolic fluxes for comprehensive metabolic engineering, and for

  18. FancyGene: dynamic visualization of gene structures and protein domain architectures on genomic loci. (United States)

    Rambaldi, Davide; Ciccarelli, Francesca D


    FancyGene is a fast and user-friendly web-based tool for producing images of one or more genes directly on the corresponding genomic locus. Starting from a variety of input formats, FancyGene rebuilds the basic components of a gene (UTRs, intron, exons). Once the initial representation is obtained, the user can superimpose additional features-such as protein domains and/or a variety of biological markers-in specific positions. FancyGene is extremely flexible allowing the user to change the resulting image dynamically, modifying colors and shapes and adding and/or removing objects. The output images are generated either in portable network graphics (PNG) or portable document format (PDF) formats and can be used for scientific presentations as well as for publications. The PDF format preserves editing capabilities, allowing picture modification using any vector graphics editor.

  19. Alternative Splicing: A Potential Source of Functional Innovation in the Eukaryotic Genome

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    Lu Chen


    Full Text Available Alternative splicing (AS is a common posttranscriptional process in eukaryotic organisms, by which multiple distinct functional transcripts are produced from a single gene. The release of the human genome draft revealed a much smaller number of genes than anticipated. Because of its potential role in expanding protein diversity, interest in alternative splicing has been increasing over the last decade. Although recent studies have shown that 94% human multiexon genes undergo AS, evolution of AS and thus its potential role in functional innovation in eukaryotic genomes remain largely unexplored. Here we review available evidence regarding the evolution of AS prevalence and functional role. In addition we stress the need to correct for the strong effect of transcript coverage in AS detection and set out a strategy to ultimately elucidate the extent of the role of AS in functional innovation on a genomic scale.

  20. EuCAP, a Eukaryotic Community Annotation Package, and its application to the rice genome

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    Hamilton John P


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Despite the improvements of tools for automated annotation of genome sequences, manual curation at the structural and functional level can provide an increased level of refinement to genome annotation. The Institute for Genomic Research Rice Genome Annotation (hereafter named the Osa1 Genome Annotation is the product of an automated pipeline and, for this reason, will benefit from the input of biologists with expertise in rice and/or particular gene families. Leveraging knowledge from a dispersed community of scientists is a demonstrated way of improving a genome annotation. This requires tools that facilitate 1 the submission of gene annotation to an annotation project, 2 the review of the submitted models by project annotators, and 3 the incorporation of the submitted models in the ongoing annotation effort. Results We have developed the Eukaryotic Community Annotation Package (EuCAP, an annotation tool, and have applied it to the rice genome. The primary level of curation by community annotators (CA has been the annotation of gene families. Annotation can be submitted by email or through the EuCAP Web Tool. The CA models are aligned to the rice pseudomolecules and the coordinates of these alignments, along with functional annotation, are stored in the MySQL EuCAP Gene Model database. Web pages displaying the alignments of the CA models to the Osa1 Genome models are automatically generated from the EuCAP Gene Model database. The alignments are reviewed by the project annotators (PAs in the context of experimental evidence. Upon approval by the PAs, the CA models, along with the corresponding functional annotations, are integrated into the Osa1 Genome Annotation. The CA annotations, grouped by family, are displayed on the Community Annotation pages of the project website, as well as in the Community Annotation track of the Genome Browser. Conclusion We have applied EuCAP to rice. As of July 2007, the

  1. [Radiation biology of structurally different Drosophila genes. Report III. The black gene: general and molecular characteristics of its radiomutability]. (United States)

    Aleksandrov, I D; Namolovan, L N; Aleksandrova, M V


    The results of the genetic, cytogenetic and molecular analysis of the nature of heritable recessive mutations at the small black (b) gene of Drosophila melanogaster induced by different doses (5-10 Gy) of 60Co gamma-rays and 0.85 MeV fission neutrons in the mature sperms of the wild-type males from the laboratory line D32 are presented. The whole spectrum of the b mutations induced by radiation of different quality is found to be the same and consists of the two main classes such as gene/point and gene/chromosome mutations, the latter of which include the whole-genomic, infra- or inter-chromosomal rearrangements involving the b gene. The induction rate of both mutation classes is found to be increased linearly with a dose of low- and high-LET radiation and the effectiveness of neutrons is 2.7 and 4.6 as large as that of gamma-rays under the gene/point and gene/chromosome mutation induction, respectively. Essentially, the molecular alterations underlying 65 gamma-ray- and neutron-induced gene/point b mutations are found not to be detected by the PCR technique. These and other established features of the b gene radiomutability are drastically different from those of another larger vestigial gene described earlier. The nature of these differences is discussed within the framework of the current notion of different biological organization of the two genes mentioned above and of the track structure theory as well.

  2. Deinococcus radiodurans pprI expression enhances the radioresistance of eukaryotes. (United States)

    Wen, Ling; Yue, Ling; Shi, Yi; Ren, Lili; Chen, Tingting; Li, Na; Zhang, Shuyu; Yang, Wei; Yang, Zhanshan


    PprI accelerates radiation-induced DNA damage repair via regulating the expression of DNA repair genes and enhances antioxidative enzyme activity in Deinococcus radiodurans after radiation. The main aim of our study was to determine whether the expression of pprI gene could fulfil its DNA repair function in eukaryotes and enhance the radioresistance of eukaryotic organism or not. In this study, we constructed pEGFP-c1-pprI eukaryotic expression vector and established a human lung epithelial cell line BEAS-2B with stable integration of pprI gene. We found that pprIexpression enhanced radioresistance of BEAS-2B cells, decreased γ-H2AX foci formation and apoptosis in irradiated BEAS-2B cells and alleviated radiation induced G2/M arrest of BEAS-2B cells. Moreover, we transferred pEGFP-c1-pprI vector into muscle of BALB/c mice by in vivo electroporation and studied the protective effect of prokaryotic pprI gene in irradiated mice. We found that pprI expression alleviated acute radiation induced hematopoietic system, lung, small intestine and testis damage and increased survival rate of irradiated mice via regulating Rad51 expression in different organs. These findings suggest that prokaryotic pprI gene expression in mammalian cells could enhance radioresistance in vitro and in vivo.

  3. On the monophyly of chromalveolates using a six-protein phylogeny of eukaryotes. (United States)

    Harper, James T; Waanders, Esmé; Keeling, Patrick J


    A global phylogeny of major eukaryotic lineages is a significant and ongoing challenge to molecular phylogenetics. Currently, there are five hypothesized major lineages or 'supergroups' of eukaryotes. One of these, the chromalveolates, represents a large fraction of protist and algal diversity. The chromalveolate hypothesis was originally based on similarities between the photosynthetic organelles (plastids) found in many of its members and has been supported by analyses of plastid-related genes. However, since plastids can move between eukaryotic lineages, it is important to provide additional support from data generated from the nuclear-cytosolic host lineage. Genes coding for six different cytosolic proteins from a variety of chromalveolates (yielding 68 new gene sequences) have been characterized so that multiple gene analyses, including all six major lineages of chromalveolates, could be compared and concatenated with data representing all five hypothesized supergroups. Overall support for much of the phylogenies is decreased over previous analyses that concatenated fewer genes for fewer taxa. Nevertheless, four of the six chromalveolate lineages (apicomplexans, ciliates, dinoflagellates and heterokonts) consistently form a monophyletic assemblage, whereas the remaining two (cryptomonads and haptophytes) form a weakly supported group. Whereas these results are consistent with the monophyly of chromalveolates inferred from plastid data, testing this hypothesis is going to require a substantial increase in data from a wide variety of organisms.

  4. Ciliary contact interactions dominate surface scattering of swimming eukaryotes. (United States)

    Kantsler, Vasily; Dunkel, Jörn; Polin, Marco; Goldstein, Raymond E


    Interactions between swimming cells and surfaces are essential to many microbiological processes, from bacterial biofilm formation to human fertilization. However, despite their fundamental importance, relatively little is known about the physical mechanisms that govern the scattering of flagellated or ciliated cells from solid surfaces. A more detailed understanding of these interactions promises not only new biological insights into structure and dynamics of flagella and cilia but may also lead to new microfluidic techniques for controlling cell motility and microbial locomotion, with potential applications ranging from diagnostic tools to therapeutic protein synthesis and photosynthetic biofuel production. Due to fundamental differences in physiology and swimming strategies, it is an open question of whether microfluidic transport and rectification schemes that have recently been demonstrated for pusher-type microswimmers such as bacteria and sperm cells, can be transferred to puller-type algae and other motile eukaryotes, because it is not known whether long-range hydrodynamic or short-range mechanical forces dominate the surface interactions of these microorganisms. Here, using high-speed microscopic imaging, we present direct experimental evidence that the surface scattering of both mammalian sperm cells and unicellular green algae is primarily governed by direct ciliary contact interactions. Building on this insight, we predict and experimentally verify the existence of optimal microfluidic ratchets that maximize rectification of initially uniform Chlamydomonas reinhardtii suspensions. Because mechano-elastic properties of cilia are conserved across eukaryotic species, we expect that our results apply to a wide range of swimming microorganisms.

  5. The mammalian adult neurogenesis gene ontology (MANGO provides a structural framework for published information on genes regulating adult hippocampal neurogenesis.

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    Rupert W Overall

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Adult hippocampal neurogenesis is not a single phenotype, but consists of a number of sub-processes, each of which is under complex genetic control. Interpretation of gene expression studies using existing resources often does not lead to results that address the interrelatedness of these processes. Formal structure, such as provided by ontologies, is essential in any field for comprehensive interpretation of existing knowledge but, until now, such a structure has been lacking for adult neurogenesis. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We have created a resource with three components 1. A structured ontology describing the key stages in the development of adult hippocampal neural stem cells into functional granule cell neurons. 2. A comprehensive survey of the literature to annotate the results of all published reports on gene function in adult hippocampal neurogenesis (257 manuscripts covering 228 genes to the appropriate terms in our ontology. 3. An easy-to-use searchable interface to the resulting database made freely available online. The manuscript presents an overview of the database highlighting global trends such as the current bias towards research on early proliferative stages, and an example gene set enrichment analysis. A limitation of the resource is the current scope of the literature which, however, is growing by around 100 publications per year. With the ontology and database in place, new findings can be rapidly annotated and regular updates of the database will be made publicly available. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The resource we present allows relevant interpretation of gene expression screens in terms of defined stages of postnatal neuronal development. Annotation of genes by hand from the adult neurogenesis literature ensures the data are directly applicable to the system under study. We believe this approach could also serve as an example to other fields in a 'bottom-up' community effort complementing the already

  6. Characterization of an Eukaryotic PL-7 Alginate Lyase in the Marine Red Alga Pyropia yezoensis. (United States)

    Inoue, Akira; Mashino, Chieco; Uji, Toshiki; Saga, Naotsune; Mikami, Koji; Ojima, Takao


    Alginate lyases belonging to polysaccharide lyase family-7 (PL-7) are the most well studied on their structures and functions among whole alginate lyases. However, all characterized PL-7 alginate lyases are from prokaryotic bacteria cells. Here we report the first identification of eukaryotic PL-7 alginate lyase from marine red alga Pyropia yezoensis. The cDNA encoding an alginate lyase PyAly was cloned and was used for the construction of recombinant PyAly (rPyAly) expression system in Escherichia coli. Purified rPyAly was assayed to identify its enzymatic properties. Its expression pattern in P. yessoensis was also investigated. PyAly is likely a secreted protein consisting of an N-terminal signal peptide of 25 residues and a catalytic domain of 216 residues. The amino-acid sequence of the catalytic domain showed 19-29% identities to those of bacterial characterized alginate lyases classified into family PL-7. Recombinant PyAly protein, rPyAly, which was produced with E. coli BL21(DE3) by cold-inducible expression system, drastically decreased the viscosity of alginate solution in the early stage of reaction. The most preferable substrate for rPyAly was the poly(M) of alginate with an optimal temperature and pH at 35(o)C and 8.0, respectively. After reaction, unsaturated tri- and tetra-saccharides were produced from poly(M) as major end products. These enzymatic properties indicated that PyAly is an endolytic alginate lyase belonging to PL-7. Moreover, we found that the PyAly gene is split into 4 exons with 3 introns. PyAly was also specifically expressed in the gametophytic haplopid stage. This study demonstrates that PyAly in marine red alga P. yezoensis is a novel PL-7 alginate lyase with an endolytic manner. PyAly is a gametophyte-specifically expressed protein and its structural gene is composed of four exons and three introns. Thus, PyAly is the first enzymatically characterized eukaryotic PL-7 alginate lyase.

  7. Phylogenetic and functional gene structure shifts of the oral microbiomes in periodontitis patients (United States)

    Li, Yan; He, Jinzhi; He, Zhili; Zhou, Yuan; Yuan, Mengting; Xu, Xin; Sun, Feifei; Liu, Chengcheng; Li, Jiyao; Xie, Wenbo; Deng, Ye; Qin, Yujia; VanNostrand, Joy D; Xiao, Liying; Wu, Liyou; Zhou, Jizhong; Shi, Wenyuan; Zhou, Xuedong


    Determining the composition and function of subgingival dental plaque is crucial to understanding human periodontal health and disease, but it is challenging because of the complexity of the interactions between human microbiomes and human body. Here, we examined the phylogenetic and functional gene differences between periodontal and healthy individuals using MiSeq sequencing of 16S rRNA gene amplicons and a specific functional gene array (a combination of GeoChip 4.0 for biogeochemical processes and HuMiChip 1.0 for human microbiomes). Our analyses indicated that the phylogenetic and functional gene structure of the oral microbiomes were distinctly different between periodontal and healthy groups. Also, 16S rRNA gene sequencing analysis indicated that 39 genera were significantly different between healthy and periodontitis groups, and Fusobacterium, Porphyromonas, Treponema, Filifactor, Eubacterium, Tannerella, Hallella, Parvimonas, Peptostreptococcus and Catonella showed higher relative abundances in the periodontitis group. In addition, functional gene array data showed that a lower gene number but higher signal intensity of major genes existed in periodontitis, and a variety of genes involved in virulence factors, amino acid metabolism and glycosaminoglycan and pyrimidine degradation were enriched in periodontitis, suggesting their potential importance in periodontal pathogenesis. However, the genes involved in amino acid synthesis and pyrimidine synthesis exhibited a significantly lower relative abundance compared with healthy group. Overall, this study provides new insights into our understanding of phylogenetic and functional gene structure of subgingival microbial communities of periodontal patients and their importance in pathogenesis of periodontitis. PMID:24671083

  8. Eukaryotic diversity in late Pleistocene marine sediments around a shallow methane hydrate deposit in the Japan Sea. (United States)

    Kouduka, M; Tanabe, A S; Yamamoto, S; Yanagawa, K; Nakamura, Y; Akiba, F; Tomaru, H; Toju, H; Suzuki, Y


    Marine sediments contain eukaryotic DNA deposited from overlying water columns. However, a large proportion of deposited eukaryotic DNA is aerobically biodegraded in shallow marine sediments. Cold seep sediments are often anaerobic near the sediment-water interface, so eukaryotic DNA in such sediments is expected to be preserved. We investigated deeply buried marine sediments in the Japan Sea, where a methane hydrate deposit is associated with cold seeps. Quantitative PCR analysis revealed the reproducible recovery of eukaryotic DNA in marine sediments at depths up to 31.0 m in the vicinity of the methane hydrate deposit. In contrast, the reproducible recovery of eukaryotic DNA was limited to a shallow depth (8.3 m) in marine sediments not adjacent to the methane hydrate deposit in the same area. Pyrosequencing of an 18S rRNA gene variable region generated 1,276-3,307 reads per sample, which was sufficient to cover the biodiversity based on rarefaction curves. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that most of the eukaryotic DNA originated from radiolarian genera of the class Chaunacanthida, which have SrSO4 skeletons, the sea grass genus Zostera, and the seaweed genus Sargassum. Eukaryotic DNA originating from other planktonic fauna and land plants was also detected. Diatom sequences closely related to Thalassiosira spp., indicative of cold climates, were obtained from sediments deposited during the last glacial period (MIS-2). Plant sequences of the genera Alnus, Micromonas, and Ulmus were found in sediments deposited during the warm interstadial period (MIS-3). These results suggest the long-term persistence of eukaryotic DNA from terrestrial and aquatic sources in marine sediments associated with cold seeps, and that the genetic information from eukaryotic DNA from deeply buried marine sediments associated with cold seeps can be used to reconstruct environments and ecosystems from the past. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. Characterization of chicken riboflavin carrier protein gene structure ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)


    2.3 RNA extraction and Northern blot analysis. Total RNA from cells was isolated by the method of ... After 24 h of recovery, cells were treated with 50 nM moxesterol (NEN life science products, USA) dissolved .... major egg yolk protein genes, vitellogenin (VTG) (Gold- berger and Deeley 1980; Wolffe and Tata 1983) and the.

  10. Gene structure, phylogeny and expression profile of the sucrose ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    The expression of cacao Sus genes was investigated via real-time PCR in various tissues, different developmental phases of leaf, flower bud and pod. ... Spice and Beverage Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Sciences/Key Laboratory of Genetic Resources Utilization of Spice and Beverage Crops ...

  11. Structure and molecular characterization of barley nudix hydrolase genes. (United States)

    Tanaka, Sayuri; Kihara, Makoto; Sugimoto, Manabu


    Putative nudix hydrolase (NUDX) genes, which encode amino acid sequences showing homology with those of Arabidopsis NUDXs and conserve nudix motif, were identified from barley. The 14 deduced barley NUDXs (HvNUDX1-14) were classified into established subfamilies, except for 8-oxo-deoxyguanosine 5'-triphosphate (8-oxo-dGTP) pyrophosphohydrolase and mRNA decapping enzyme subfamilies, and three substrate-unknown subfamilies. Drought and UV-C stresses, respectively, up-regulated 7 and 4 HvNUDX genes, but some homologs of Arabidopsis NUDXs showed different responses to abiotic stress. HvNUDX12 gene, belonging to diadenosine tetraphosphates (Ap₄A) pyrophosphohydrolase subfamily gene and up-regulated by UV-C, was expressed in Escherichia coli cells. The recombinant protein showed 8-oxo-dGTP, Ap₄A, and guanosine-3',5'-tetraphosphate (ppGpp) pyrophosphohydrolase activities, and the suppression of the lacZ amber mutation in a mutT-deficient E. coli cells caused by the incorporation of 8-oxo-GTP into mRNA was prevented to a significant degree. These results suggest that barley NUDXs have unique constitution and response of NUDX to abiotic stress.

  12. Prokaryotes versus Eukaryotes: Who is hosting whom?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guillermo eTellez


    Full Text Available Microorganisms represent the largest component of biodiversity in our world. For millions of years, prokaryotic microorganisms have functioned as a major selective force shaping eukaryotic evolution. Microbes that live inside and on animals outnumber the animals’ actual somatic and germ cells by an estimated 10-fold. Collectively, the intestinal microbiome represents a ‘forgotten organ’, functioning as an organ inside another that can execute many physiological responsibilities. The nature of primitive eukaryotes was drastically changed due to the association with symbiotic prokaryotes facilitating mutual coevolution of host and microbe. Phytophagous insects have long been used to test theories of evolutionary diversification; moreover, the diversification of a number of phytophagous insect lineages has been linked to mutualisms with microbes. From termites and honey bees to ruminants and mammals, depending on novel biochemistries provided by the prokaryotic microbiome, the association helps to metabolize several nutrients that the host cannot digest and converting these into useful end products (such as short chain fatty acids, a process which has huge impact on the biology and homeostasis of metazoans. More importantly, in a direct and/or indirect way, the intestinal microbiota influences the assembly of gut-associated lymphoid tissue, helps to educate immune system, affects the integrity of the intestinal mucosal barrier, modulates proliferation and differentiation of its epithelial lineages, regulates angiogenesis, and modifies the activity of enteric as well as the central nervous system,. Despite these important effects, the mechanisms by which the gut microbial community influences the host’s biology remains almost entirely unknown. Our aim here is to encourage empirical inquiry into the relationship between mutualism and evolutionary diversification between prokaryotes and eukaryotes which encourage us to postulate: Who is

  13. Spontaneous gene flow and population structure in wild and cultivated chicory, Cichorium intybus L

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiær, Lars Pødenphant; Felber, F.; Flavell, A.


    Spontaneous gene flow between wild and cultivated chicory, Cichorium intybus L., may have implications for the genetic structure and evolution of populations and varieties. One aspect of this crop-wild gene flow is the dispersal of transgenes from genetically modified varieties, e.g. gene flow from...... GM chicory to natural chicory could have unwanted consequences. With the purpose to identify and quantify crop-wild gene flow in chicory, we analysed introgression in 19 wild chicory populations and 16 accessions of chicory varieties and landraces distributed across Northern, Central...... and Mediterranean Europe. The analysis used 281 AFLP markers and 75 SSAP markers giving a total of 356 polymorphic markers. Results from model based assignments with the program STRUCTURE indicated many incidents of recent gene flow. Gene flow was observed both between cultivars and wild populations, between...

  14. Transcriptional repression of the yeast CHA1 gene requires the chromatin-remodeling complex RSC

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moreira, José Manuel Alfonso; Holmberg, S


    In eukaryotes, DNA is packaged into chromatin, a compact structure that must be disrupted when genes are transcribed by RNA polymerase II. For transcription to take place, chromatin is remodeled via nucleosome disruption or displacement, a fundamental transcriptional regulatory mechanism in eukar...

  15. Molecular characterization of structural genes coding for a membrane bound hydrogenase in Methylococcus capsulatus (Bath). (United States)

    Csáki, R; Hanczár, T; Bodrossy, L; Murrell, J C; Kovács, K L


    The first gene cluster encoding for a membrane bound [NiFe] hydrogenase from a methanotroph, Methylococcus capsulatus (Bath), was cloned and sequenced. The cluster consisted of the structural genes hupS and hupL and accessory genes hupE, hupC and hupD. A DeltahupSL deletion mutant of Mc. capsulatus was constructed by marker exchange mutagenesis. Membrane associated hydrogenase activity disappeared. The membrane associated hydrogenase appeared to have a hydrogen uptake function in vivo.

  16. Chromosome structures: reduction of certain problems with unequal gene content and gene paralogs to integer linear programming. (United States)

    Lyubetsky, Vassily; Gershgorin, Roman; Gorbunov, Konstantin


    Chromosome structure is a very limited model of the genome including the information about its chromosomes such as their linear or circular organization, the order of genes on them, and the DNA strand encoding a gene. Gene lengths, nucleotide composition, and intergenic regions are ignored. Although highly incomplete, such structure can be used in many cases, e.g., to reconstruct phylogeny and evolutionary events, to identify gene synteny, regulatory elements and promoters (considering highly conserved elements), etc. Three problems are considered; all assume unequal gene content and the presence of gene paralogs. The distance problem is to determine the minimum number of operations required to transform one chromosome structure into another and the corresponding transformation itself including the identification of paralogs in two structures. We use the DCJ model which is one of the most studied combinatorial rearrangement models. Double-, sesqui-, and single-operations as well as deletion and insertion of a chromosome region are considered in the model; the single ones comprise cut and join. In the reconstruction problem, a phylogenetic tree with chromosome structures in the leaves is given. It is necessary to assign the structures to inner nodes of the tree to minimize the sum of distances between terminal structures of each edge and to identify the mutual paralogs in a fairly large set of structures. A linear algorithm is known for the distance problem without paralogs, while the presence of paralogs makes it NP-hard. If paralogs are allowed but the insertion and deletion operations are missing (and special constraints are imposed), the reduction of the distance problem to integer linear programming is known. Apparently, the reconstruction problem is NP-hard even in the absence of paralogs. The problem of contigs is to find the optimal arrangements for each given set of contigs, which also includes the mutual identification of paralogs. We proved that these

  17. Searching for the role of protein phosphatases in eukaryotic microorganisms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    da-Silva A.M.


    Full Text Available Preference for specific protein substrates together with differential sensitivity to activators and inhibitors has allowed classification of serine/threonine protein phosphatases (PPs into four major types designated types 1, 2A, 2B and 2C (PP1, PP2A, PP2B and PP2C, respectively. Comparison of sequences within their catalytic domains has indicated that PP1, PP2A and PP2B are members of the same gene family named PPP. On the other hand, the type 2C enzyme does not share sequence homology with the PPP members and thus represents another gene family, known as PPM. In this report we briefly summarize some of our studies about the role of serine/threonine phosphatases in growth and differentiation of three different eukaryotic models: Blastocladiella emersonii, Neurospora crassa and Dictyostelium discoideum. Our observations suggest that PP2C is the major phosphatase responsible for dephosphorylation of amidotransferase, an enzyme that controls cell wall synthesis during Blastocladiella emersonii zoospore germination. We also report the existence of a novel acid- and thermo-stable protein purified from Neurospora crassa mycelia, which specifically inhibits the PP1 activity of this fungus and mammals. Finally, we comment on our recent results demonstrating that Dictyostelium discoideum expresses a gene that codes for PP1, although this activity has never been demonstrated biochemically in this organism.

  18. Structural and gene expression analyses of uptake hydrogenases ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    These include the expression of oxygen-scavenging uptake hydrogenases, the formation of hopanoid-rich vesicles, enclosed by multi-layered hopanoid structures, the lignification of hyphal cell walls, and the production of haemoglobins in the symbiotic nodule. In this work, we analysed the expression and structure of the ...

  19. [Radiation biology of structurally different Drosophila genes. Report 2. The vestigial gene: molecular characteristics of chromosome mutations]. (United States)

    Afanas'eva, K P; Aleksandrova, M V; Aleksandrov, I D; Korablinova, S V


    The results of the PCR-assay of mutation lesions at each of 16 fragments overlapping the entire vestigial (vg) gene of Drosophila melanogaster in 52 gamma-ray-, neutron- and neutron + gamma-ray-induced vg mutants having the inversion or translocation breakpoint within the vg microregion are presented. 4 from 52 mutants studied were found to have large deletions of about 200 kb covering the entire vg gene and adjacent to sca and l(2)C gene-markers as well. 23 mutants from 48 (47.9%) were found to have a wild-type gene structure showing that the exchange breakpoints are located outside of the vg gene. 25 others display the intragenic lesions of different complexity detected by PCR as the absence of(i) either one fragment or (ii) two or more (6-7) adjacent fragments and (iii) simultaneously several (i) or (i) and (ii) types separated by normal gene regions. It is important that 6 from 25 mutants have the breakpoint inside the vg gene and display the (i) or (ii) type of lesions at the gene regions containing the putative break whereas 5 others from 25 with the above lesions have the exchange breakpoint outside the vg gene. Therefore, the breakpoints underlying either inversions or translocations induced by low- and high-LET radiation are likely to be located within and outside the gene under study. Thereby, the formation of exchanges is accompanied by DNA deletions of various sizes at the exchange breakpoints. The molecular model of formation of such exchange-deletion rearrangements is elaborated and presented. Also, conception of the predominately clustered action of both low- and high-LET radiation on the germ cell genome is suggested as the summing-up of the presented results. The ability of ionizing radiation to induce the clusters of genetic alterations in the form of hidden DNA damages as well as gene/chromosome mutations is determined by the track structure and hierarchical organization of the genome. To detect the quality and frequency patterns of all

  20. Genome sequence analysis indicates that the model eukaryote Nematostella vectensis harbors bacterial consorts. (United States)

    Artamonova, Irena I; Mushegian, Arcady R


    Analysis of the genome sequence of the starlet sea anemone, Nematostella vectensis, reveals many genes whose products are phylogenetically closer to proteins encoded by bacteria or bacteriophages than to any metazoan homologs. One explanation for such sequence affinities could be that these genes have been horizontally transferred from bacteria to the Nematostella lineage. We show, however, that bacterium-like and phage-like genes sequenced by the N. vectensis genome project tend to cluster on separate scaffolds, which typically do not include eukaryotic genes and differ from the latter in their GC contents. Moreover, most of the bacterium-like genes in N. vectensis either lack introns or the introns annotated in such genes are false predictions that, when translated, often restore the missing portions of their predicted protein products. In a freshwater cnidarian, Hydra, for which a proteobacterial endosymbiont is known, these gene features have been used to delineate the DNA of that endosymbiont sampled by the genome sequencing project. We predict that a large fraction of bacterium-like genes identified in the N. vectensis genome similarly are drawn from the contemporary bacterial consorts of the starlet sea anemone. These uncharacterized bacteria associated with N. vectensis are a proteobacterium and a representative of the phylum Bacteroidetes, each represented in the database by an apparently random sample of informational and operational genes. A substantial portion of a putative bacteriophage genome was also detected, which would be especially unlikely to have been transferred to a eukaryote.

  1. The structure and expression of globin genes in rabbit and man

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Flavell, R.A.; Bernards, R.A.; Grosveld, G.C.; Hoeijmakers-van Dommelen, H.A.M.; Kooter, J.M.; Boer, E. de; Little, P.F.R.


    The rabbit and human β-related globin genes have been analysed using genomic 'Southern blotting' and molecular cloning. The rabbit β-globin gene structure has been worked out in detail and its transcripts have been characterized by S₁ nuclease transcription mapping. The arrangement of


    We have sequenced the structural gene and flanking regions for lanosterol 14 alpha-demethylase (14DM) from Saccharomyces cerevisiae. An open reading frame of 530 codons encodes a 60.7-kDa protein. When this gene is disrupted by integrative transformation, the resulting strain req...

  3. Methods and strategies for gene structure curation in WormBase

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Williams, G W; Davis, P A; Rogers, A S; Bieri, T; Ozersky, P; Spieth, J


    .... In one of its roles as a central repository for nematode biology, WormBase continues to refine the gene structure annotations using sequence similarity and other computational methods, as well...

  4. Gene Structures, Classification, and Expression Models of the DREB Transcription Factor Subfamily in Populus trichocarpa (United States)

    Chen, Yunlin; Zhang, Haizhen; Mao, Xuliang; Li, Chenghao


    We identified 75 dehydration-responsive element-binding (DREB) protein genes in Populus trichocarpa. We analyzed gene structures, phylogenies, domain duplications, genome localizations, and expression profiles. The phylogenic construction suggests that the PtrDREB gene subfamily can be classified broadly into six subtypes (DREB A-1 to A-6) in Populus. The chromosomal localizations of the PtrDREB genes indicated 18 segmental duplication events involving 36 genes and six redundant PtrDREB genes were involved in tandem duplication events. There were fewer introns in the PtrDREB subfamily. The motif composition of PtrDREB was highly conserved in the same subtype. We investigated expression profiles of this gene subfamily from different tissues and/or developmental stages. Sixteen genes present in the digital expression analysis had high levels of transcript accumulation. The microarray results suggest that 18 genes were upregulated. We further examined the stress responsiveness of 15 genes by qRT-PCR. A digital northern analysis showed that the PtrDREB17, 18, and 32 genes were highly induced in leaves under cold stress, and the same expression trends were shown by qRT-PCR. Taken together, these observations may lay the foundation for future functional analyses to unravel the biological roles of Populus' DREB genes. PMID:24324388

  5. Gene Structures, Classification, and Expression Models of the DREB Transcription Factor Subfamily in Populus trichocarpa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yunlin Chen


    Full Text Available We identified 75 dehydration-responsive element-binding (DREB protein genes in Populus trichocarpa. We analyzed gene structures, phylogenies, domain duplications, genome localizations, and expression profiles. The phylogenic construction suggests that the PtrDREB gene subfamily can be classified broadly into six subtypes (DREB A-1 to A-6 in Populus. The chromosomal localizations of the PtrDREB genes indicated 18 segmental duplication events involving 36 genes and six redundant PtrDREB genes were involved in tandem duplication events. There were fewer introns in the PtrDREB subfamily. The motif composition of PtrDREB was highly conserved in the same subtype. We investigated expression profiles of this gene subfamily from different tissues and/or developmental stages. Sixteen genes present in the digital expression analysis had high levels of transcript accumulation. The microarray results suggest that 18 genes were upregulated. We further examined the stress responsiveness of 15 genes by qRT-PCR. A digital northern analysis showed that the PtrDREB17, 18, and 32 genes were highly induced in leaves under cold stress, and the same expression trends were shown by qRT-PCR. Taken together, these observations may lay the foundation for future functional analyses to unravel the biological roles of Populus’ DREB genes.

  6. Evolutionary dynamics of the kinetochore network in eukaryotes as revealed by comparative genomics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Hooff, Jolien Je; Tromer, Eelco; van Wijk, Leny; Snel, Berend; Kops, Geert Jpl


    During eukaryotic cell division, the sister chromatids of duplicated chromosomes are pulled apart by microtubules, which connect via kinetochores. The kinetochore is a multiprotein structure that links centromeres to microtubules, and that emits molecular signals in order to safeguard the equal

  7. A simple and rapid PCR-based method to isolate complete small macronuclear minichromosomes from hypotrich ciliates: 5S rDNA and S26 ribosomal protein gene of Oxytricha (Sterkiella) nova. (United States)

    Callejas, Sergio; Gutiérrez, Juan Carlos


    Hypotrich ciliates present a macronuclear genome consisting of gene-sized instead of chromosome-sized DNA molecules. Exploiting this unique eukaryotic genome feature, we introduce, for the first time in ciliates, a rapid and easy PCR method using telomeric primers to isolate small complete macronuclear DNA molecules or minichromosomes. Two presumably abundant macronuclear DNA molecules, containing ribosomal genes, were amplified from the Oxytricha (Sterkiella) nova complete genome after using this method, and then were cloned and sequenced. The 5S rDNA sequence of O. (S.) nova is the third one reported among hypotrich ciliates; its primary and secondary structure is compared with other eukaryotic 5S rRNAs. The ribosomal protein S26 gene is the first one reported among ciliates. This "End-End-PCR" method might be useful to obtain similar gene-sized macronuclear molecules from other hypotrich ciliates, and, therefore, to increase our knowledge on ribosomal genes in these eukaryotic microorganisms.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristian S. Cimpeanu


    Full Text Available A large variety of nuclear fibrous proteins (such as actin, myosin, lamin B, transcription factors, topoisomerases, etc represent constitutive elements of complex structures present in the eukaryotic nuclei: the nuclear matrix and the nuclear lamina, repectively. These nuclear compartments, with fibrous network-like structure, play crucialroles in structural organization of nuclei, chromatin remodeling, DNA transcription, signals transduction, cell cycle regulation, embryonic development and other nuclear basic processes.



    Cristian S. Cimpeanu; Mirela Campeanu


    A large variety of nuclear fibrous proteins (such as actin, myosin, lamin B, transcription factors, topoisomerases, etc) represent constitutive elements of complex structures present in the eukaryotic nuclei: the nuclear matrix and the nuclear lamina, repectively. These nuclear compartments, with fibrous network-like structure, play crucialroles in structural organization of nuclei, chromatin remodeling, DNA transcription, signals transduction, cell cycle regulation, embryonic development and...

  10. Gene structure, DNA methylation, and imprinted expression of the human SNRPN gene

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Glenn, C.C.; Jong, T.C.; Filbrandt, M.M. [Univ. of Florida College of Medicine, Gainesville, FL (United States)] [and others


    The human SNRPN (small nuclear ribonucleoprotein polypeptide N) gene is one of a gene family that encode proteins involved in pre-mRNA splicing and maps to the smallest deletion region involved in the Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS) within chromosome 15q11-q13. Paternal only expression of SNRPN has previously been demonstrated by use of cell lines from PWS patients (maternal allele only) and Angelman syndrome (AS) patients (paternal allele only). We have characterized two previously unidentified 5{prime} exons of the SNRPN gene and demonstrate that exons -1 and 0 are included in the full-length transcript. This gene is expressed in a wide range of somatic tissues and at high, approximately equal levels in all regions of the brain. Both the first exon of SNRPN (exon -1) and the putative transcription start site are embedded within a CpG island. This CpG island is extensively methylated on the repressed maternal allele and is unmethylated on the expressed paternal allele, in a wide range of fetal and adult somatic cells. This provides a quick and highly reliable diagnostic assay for PWS and AS, which is based on DNA-methylation analysis that has been tested on >100 patients in a variety of tissues. Conversely, several CpG sites {approximately}22 kb downstream of the transcription start site in intron 5 are preferentially methylated on the expressed paternal allele in somatic tissues and male germ cells, whereas these same sites are unmethylated in fetal oocytes. These findings are consistent with a key role for DNA methylation in the imprinted inheritance and subsequent gene expression of the human SNRPN gene. 59 refs., 9 figs., 1 tab.

  11. Structural model of a putrescine-cadaverine permease from Trypanosoma cruzi predicts residues vital for transport and ligand binding

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Soysa, R.; Venselaar, H.; Poston, J.; Ullman, B.; Hasne, M.P.


    The TcPOT1.1 gene from Trypanosoma cruzi encodes a high affinity putrescine-cadaverine transporter belonging to the APC (amino acid/polyamine/organocation) transporter superfamily. No experimental three-dimensional structure exists for any eukaryotic member of the APC family, and thus the structural

  12. Structure and expression of the human MDR (P-glycoprotein) gene family.


    Chin, J E; Soffir, R; Noonan, K E; Choi, K.; Roninson, I B


    The human MDR (P-glycoprotein) gene family is known to include two members, MDR1 and MDR2. The product of the MDR1 gene, which is responsible for resistance to different cytotoxic drugs (multidrug resistance), appears to serve as an energy-dependent efflux pump for various lipophilic compounds. The function of the MDR2 gene remains unknown. We have examined the structure of the human MDR gene family by Southern hybridization of DNA from different multidrug-resistant cell lines with subfragmen...

  13. TAR cloning: insights into gene function, long-range haplotypes and genome structure and evolution. (United States)

    Kouprina, Natalay; Larionov, Vladimir


    The structural and functional analysis of mammalian genomes would benefit from the ability to isolate from multiple DNA samples any targeted chromosomal segment that is the size of an average human gene. A cloning technique that is based on transformation-associated recombination (TAR) in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae satisfies this need. It is a unique tool to selectively recover chromosome segments that are up to 250 kb in length from complex genomes. In addition, TAR cloning can be used to characterize gene function and genome variation, including polymorphic structural rearrangements, mutations and the evolution of gene families, and for long-range haplotyping.

  14. Structural variation of the ribosomal gene cluster within the class Insecta

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mukha, D.V.; Sidorenko, A.P.; Lazebnaya, I.V. [Vavilov Institute of General Genetics, Moscow (Russian Federation)] [and others


    General estimation of ribosomal DNA variation within the class Insecta is presented. It is shown that, using blot-hybridization, one can detect differences in the structure of the ribosomal gene cluster not only between genera within an order, but also between species within a genera, including sibling species. Structure of the ribosomal gene cluster of the Coccinellidae family (ladybirds) is analyzed. It is shown that cloned highly conservative regions of ribosomal DNA of Tetrahymena pyriformis can be used as probes for analyzing ribosomal genes in insects. 24 refs., 4 figs.

  15. Structural relationships between highly conserved elements and genes in vertebrate genomes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hong Sun

    Full Text Available Large numbers of sequence elements have been identified to be highly conserved among vertebrate genomes. These highly conserved elements (HCEs are often located in or around genes that are involved in transcription regulation and early development. They have been shown to be involved in cis-regulatory activities through both in vivo and additional computational studies. We have investigated the structural relationships between such elements and genes in six vertebrate genomes human, mouse, rat, chicken, zebrafish and tetraodon and detected several thousand cases of conserved HCE-gene associations, and also cases of HCEs with no common target genes. A few examples underscore the potential significance of our findings about several individual genes. We found that the conserved association between HCE/HCEs and gene/genes are not restricted to elements by their absolute distance on the genome. Notably, long-range associations were identified and the molecular functions of the associated genes do not show any particular overrepresentation of the functional categories previously reported. HCEs in close proximity are found to be linked with different set of gene/genes. The results reflect the highly complex correlation between HCEs and their putative target genes.

  16. The IQD gene family in soybean: structure, phylogeny, evolution and expression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lin Feng

    Full Text Available Members of the plant-specific IQ67-domain (IQD protein family are involved in plant development and the basal defense response. Although systematic characterization of this family has been carried out in Arabidopsis, tomato (Solanum lycopersicum, Brachypodium distachyon and rice (Oryza sativa, systematic analysis and expression profiling of this gene family in soybean (Glycine max have not previously been reported. In this study, we identified and structurally characterized IQD genes in the soybean genome. A complete set of 67 soybean IQD genes (GmIQD1-67 was identified using Blast search tools, and the genes were clustered into four subfamilies (IQD I-IV based on phylogeny. These soybean IQD genes are distributed unevenly across all 20 chromosomes, with 30 segmental duplication events, suggesting that segmental duplication has played a major role in the expansion of the soybean IQD gene family. Analysis of the Ka/Ks ratios showed that the duplicated genes of the GmIQD family primarily underwent purifying selection. Microsynteny was detected in most pairs: genes in clade 1-3 might be present in genome regions that were inverted, expanded or contracted after the divergence; most gene pairs in clade 4 showed high conservation with little rearrangement among these gene-residing regions. Of the soybean IQD genes examined, six were most highly expressed in young leaves, six in flowers, one in roots and two in nodules. Our qRT-PCR analysis of 24 soybean IQD III genes confirmed that these genes are regulated by MeJA stress. Our findings present a comprehensive overview of the soybean IQD gene family and provide insights into the evolution of this family. In addition, this work lays a solid foundation for further experiments aimed at determining the biological functions of soybean IQD genes in growth and development.

  17. Conservation and implications of eukaryote transcriptional regulatory regions across multiple species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deng Minghua


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Increasing evidence shows that whole genomes of eukaryotes are almost entirely transcribed into both protein coding genes and an enormous number of non-protein-coding RNAs (ncRNAs. Therefore, revealing the underlying regulatory mechanisms of transcripts becomes imperative. However, for a complete understanding of transcriptional regulatory mechanisms, we need to identify the regions in which they are found. We will call these transcriptional regulation regions, or TRRs, which can be considered functional regions containing a cluster of regulatory elements that cooperatively recruit transcriptional factors for binding and then regulating the expression of transcripts. Results We constructed a hierarchical stochastic language (HSL model for the identification of core TRRs in yeast based on regulatory cooperation among TRR elements. The HSL model trained based on yeast achieved comparable accuracy in predicting TRRs in other species, e.g., fruit fly, human, and rice, thus demonstrating the conservation of TRRs across species. The HSL model was also used to identify the TRRs of genes, such as p53 or OsALYL1, as well as microRNAs. In addition, the ENCODE regions were examined by HSL, and TRRs were found to pervasively locate in the genomes. Conclusion Our findings indicate that 1 the HSL model can be used to accurately predict core TRRs of transcripts across species and 2 identified core TRRs by HSL are proper candidates for the further scrutiny of specific regulatory elements and mechanisms. Meanwhile, the regulatory activity taking place in the abundant numbers of ncRNAs might account for the ubiquitous presence of TRRs across the genome. In addition, we also found that the TRRs of protein coding genes and ncRNAs are similar in structure, with the latter being more conserved than the former.

  18. Functional genomics and structural biology in the definition of gene function. (United States)

    Hrmova, Maria; Fincher, Geoffrey B


    By mid-2007, the three-dimensional (3D) structures of some 45,000 proteins have been solved, over a period where the linear structures of millions of genes have been defined. Technical challenges associated with X-ray crystallography are being overcome and high-throughput methods both for crystallization of proteins and for solving their 3D structures are under development. The question arises as to how structural biology can be integrated with and adds value to functional genomics programs. Structural biology will assist in the definition of gene function through the identification of the likely function of the protein products of genes. The 3D information allows protein sequences predicted from DNA sequences to be classified into broad groups, according to the overall 'fold', or 3D shape, of the protein. Structural information can be used to predict the preferred substrate of a protein, and thereby greatly enhance the accurate annotation of the corresponding gene. Furthermore, it will enable the effects of amino acid substitutions in enzymes to be better understood with respect to enzyme function and could thereby provide insights into natural variation in genes. If the molecular basis of transcription factor-DNA interactions were defined through precise 3D knowledge of the protein-DNA binding site, it would be possible to predict the effects of base substitutions within the motif on the specificity and/or kinetics of binding. In this chapter, we present specific examples of how structural biology can provide valuable information for functional genomics programs.

  19. Substrate protein recognition mechanism of archaeal and eukaryotic chaperonins. (United States)

    Shrestha, Pooja; Jayasinghe, Manori; Stan, George


    Chaperonins are double ring-shaped biological nanomachines that assist protein folding. Spectacular conformational changes take place within each chaperonin ring using energy derived from ATP hydrolysis. These changes result in transitions from the open to the closed ring. Substrate proteins bind to the open ring and are encapsulated within the closed ring cavity. We focus on the substrate protein recognition mechanism of archaeal and eukaryotic chaperonins. We predict substrate protein binding sites using structural and bioinformatic analyses of functional states during the chaperonin cycle. Based on large changes in solvent accessible surface area and contact maps we glean the functional role of chaperonin amino acids. During the transition between open to closed chaperonin ring, the largest change in accessible surface area of amino acids is found in helical protrusion and two helices located at the cavity opening. Our calculations suggest that the helical protrusion and two helices constitute the substrate protein binding site.

  20. Pi sensing and signalling: from prokaryotic to eukaryotic cells. (United States)

    Qi, Wanjun; Baldwin, Stephen A; Muench, Stephen P; Baker, Alison


    Phosphorus is one of the most important macronutrients and is indispensable for all organisms as a critical structural component as well as participating in intracellular signalling and energy metabolism. Sensing and signalling of phosphate (Pi) has been extensively studied and is well understood in single-cellular organisms like bacteria (Escherichia coli) and Saccharomyces cerevisiae In comparison, the mechanism of Pi regulation in plants is less well understood despite recent advances in this area. In most soils the available Pi limits crop yield, therefore a clearer understanding of the molecular basis underlying Pi sensing and signalling is of great importance for the development of plants with improved Pi use efficiency. This mini-review compares some of the main Pi regulation pathways in prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells and identifies similarities and differences among different organisms, as well as providing some insight into future research. © 2016 The Author(s). published by Portland Press Limited on behalf of the Biochemical Society.

  1. Bioinformatic screening of autoimmune disease genes and protein structure prediction with FAMS for drug discovery. (United States)

    Ishida, Shigeharu; Umeyama, Hideaki; Iwadate, Mitsuo; Taguchi, Y-H


    Autoimmune diseases are often intractable because their causes are unknown. Identifying which genes contribute to these diseases may allow us to understand the pathogenesis, but it is difficult to determine which genes contribute to disease. Recently, epigenetic information has been considered to activate/deactivate disease-related genes. Thus, it may also be useful to study epigenetic information that differs between healthy controls and patients with autoimmune disease. Among several types of epigenetic information, promoter methylation is believed to be one of the most important factors. Here, we propose that principal component analysis is useful to identify specific gene promoters that are differently methylated between the normal healthy controls and patients with autoimmune disease. Full Automatic Modeling System (FAMS) was used to predict the three-dimensional structures of selected proteins and successfully inferred relatively confident structures. Several possibilities of the application to the drug discovery based on obtained structures are discussed.

  2. Evolution of the Rho family of ras-like GTPases in eukaryotes. (United States)

    Boureux, Anthony; Vignal, Emmanuel; Faure, Sandrine; Fort, Philippe


    GTPases of the Rho family are molecular switches that play important roles in converting and amplifying external signals into cellular effects. Originally demonstrated to control the dynamics of the F-actin cytoskeleton, Rho GTPases have been implicated in many basic cellular processes that influence cell proliferation, differentiation, motility, adhesion, survival, or secretion. To elucidate the evolutionary history of the Rho family, we have analyzed over 20 species covering major eukaryotic clades from unicellular organisms to mammals, including platypus and opossum, and have reconstructed the ontogeny and the chronology of emergence of the different subfamilies. Our data establish that the 20 mammalian Rho members are structured into 8 subfamilies, among which Rac is the founder of the whole family. Rho, Cdc42, RhoUV, and RhoBTB subfamilies appeared before Coelomates and RhoJQ, Cdc42 isoforms, RhoDF, and Rnd emerged in chordates. In vertebrates, gene duplications and retrotranspositions increased the size of each chordate Rho subfamily, whereas RhoH, the last subfamily, arose probably by horizontal gene transfer. Rac1b, a Rac1 isoform generated by alternative splicing, emerged in amniotes, and RhoD, only in therians. Analysis of Rho mRNA expression patterns in mouse tissues shows that recent subfamilies have tissue-specific and low-level expression that supports their implication only in narrow time windows or in differentiated metabolic functions. These findings give a comprehensive view of the evolutionary canvas of the Rho family and provide guides for future structure and evolution studies of other components of Rho signaling pathways, in particular regulators of the RhoGEF family.

  3. Genomic structure and nucleotide sequence of the p55 gene of the puffer fish Fugu rubripes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Elgar, G.; Rattray, F.; Greystrong, J.; Brenner, S. [Univ. of Cambridge (United Kingdom)


    The p55 gene, which codes for a 55-kDa erythrocyte membrane protein, has been cloned and sequenced from the genome of the Japanese puffer fish Fugu rubripes (Fugu). This organism has the smallest recorded vertebrate genome and therefore provides an efficient way to sequence genes at the genomic level. The gene encoding p55 covers 5.5 kb from the beginning to the end of the coding sequence, four to six times smaller than the estimated size of the human gene, and is encoded by 12 exons. The structure of this gene has not been previously elucidated, but from this and other data we would predict a similar or identical structure in mammals. The predicted amino acid sequence of this gene in Fugu, coding for a polypeptide of 467 amino acids, is very similar to that of the human gene with the exception of the first two exons, which differ considerably. The predicted Fugu protein has a molecular weight (52.6 kDa compared with 52.3 kDa) and an isoelectric point very similar to those of human p55. In human, the p55 gene lies in the gene-dense Xq28 region, just 30 kb 3{prime} to the Factor VIII gene, and is estimated to cover 20-30 kb. Its 5{prime} end is associated with a CpG island, although there is no evidence that this is the case in Fugu. The small size of genes in Fugu and the high coding homology that they share with their mammalian equivalents, both in structure and sequence, make this compact vertebrate genome an ideal model for genomic studies. 23 refs., 3 figs.

  4. Population Genetic Structure and Gene Flow Among Nigerian Goats ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Population Genetic structure in 200 indigenous goats sampled across four states from the South-Western and South Southern region of Nigeria was assessed using 7 microsatellite DNA markers. Observed Analysis of molecular genetic variation (AMOVA) was higher within populations (3.47) than among populations (1.84) ...

  5. Synthetic biology tools for bioprospecting of natural products in eukaryotes. (United States)

    Unkles, Shiela E; Valiante, Vito; Mattern, Derek J; Brakhage, Axel A


    Filamentous fungi have the capacity to produce a battery of natural products of often unknown function, synthesized by complex metabolic pathways. Unfortunately, most of these pathways appear silent, many in intractable organisms, and their products consequently unidentified. One basic challenge is the difficulty of expressing a biosynthesis pathway for a complex natural product in a heterologous eukaryotic host. Here, we provide a proof-of concept solution to this challenge and describe how the entire penicillin biosynthesis pathway can be expressed in a heterologous host. The method takes advantage of a combination of improved yeast in vivo cloning technology, generation of polycistronic mRNA for the gene cluster under study, and an amenable and easily manipulated fungal host, i.e., Aspergillus nidulans. We achieve expression from a single promoter of the pathway genes to yield a large polycistronic mRNA by using viral 2A peptide sequences to direct successful cotranslational cleavage of pathway enzymes. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. A biobrick library for cloning custom eukaryotic plasmids. (United States)

    Constante, Marco; Grünberg, Raik; Isalan, Mark


    Researchers often require customised variations of plasmids that are not commercially available. Here we demonstrate the applicability and versatility of standard synthetic biological parts (biobricks) to build custom plasmids. For this purpose we have built a collection of 52 parts that include multiple cloning sites (MCS) and common protein tags, protein reporters and selection markers, amongst others. Importantly, most of the parts are designed in a format to allow fusions that maintain the reading frame. We illustrate the collection by building several model contructs, including concatemers of protein binding-site motifs, and a variety of plasmids for eukaryotic stable cloning and chromosomal insertion. For example, in 3 biobrick iterations, we make a cerulean-reporter plasmid for cloning fluorescent protein fusions. Furthermore, we use the collection to implement a recombinase-mediated DNA insertion (RMDI), allowing chromosomal site-directed exchange of genes. By making one recipient stable cell line, many standardised cell lines can subsequently be generated, by fluorescent fusion-gene exchange. We propose that this biobrick collection may be distributed peer-to-peer as a stand-alone library, in addition to its distribution through the Registry of Standard Biological Parts (

  7. A biobrick library for cloning custom eukaryotic plasmids.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco Constante

    Full Text Available Researchers often require customised variations of plasmids that are not commercially available. Here we demonstrate the applicability and versatility of standard synthetic biological parts (biobricks to build custom plasmids. For this purpose we have built a collection of 52 parts that include multiple cloning sites (MCS and common protein tags, protein reporters and selection markers, amongst others. Importantly, most of the parts are designed in a format to allow fusions that maintain the reading frame. We illustrate the collection by building several model contructs, including concatemers of protein binding-site motifs, and a variety of plasmids for eukaryotic stable cloning and chromosomal insertion. For example, in 3 biobrick iterations, we make a cerulean-reporter plasmid for cloning fluorescent protein fusions. Furthermore, we use the collection to implement a recombinase-mediated DNA insertion (RMDI, allowing chromosomal site-directed exchange of genes. By making one recipient stable cell line, many standardised cell lines can subsequently be generated, by fluorescent fusion-gene exchange. We propose that this biobrick collection may be distributed peer-to-peer as a stand-alone library, in addition to its distribution through the Registry of Standard Biological Parts (

  8. Insights into the red algae and eukaryotic evolution from the genome of Porphyra umbilicalis (Bangiophyceae, Rhodophyta). (United States)

    Brawley, Susan H; Blouin, Nicolas A; Ficko-Blean, Elizabeth; Wheeler, Glen L; Lohr, Martin; Goodson, Holly V; Jenkins, Jerry W; Blaby-Haas, Crysten E; Helliwell, Katherine E; Chan, Cheong Xin; Marriage, Tara N; Bhattacharya, Debashish; Klein, Anita S; Badis, Yacine; Brodie, Juliet; Cao, Yuanyu; Collén, Jonas; Dittami, Simon M; Gachon, Claire M M; Green, Beverley R; Karpowicz, Steven J; Kim, Jay W; Kudahl, Ulrich Johan; Lin, Senjie; Michel, Gurvan; Mittag, Maria; Olson, Bradley J S C; Pangilinan, Jasmyn L; Peng, Yi; Qiu, Huan; Shu, Shengqiang; Singer, John T; Smith, Alison G; Sprecher, Brittany N; Wagner, Volker; Wang, Wenfei; Wang, Zhi-Yong; Yan, Juying; Yarish, Charles; Zäuner-Riek, Simone; Zhuang, Yunyun; Zou, Yong; Lindquist, Erika A; Grimwood, Jane; Barry, Kerrie W; Rokhsar, Daniel S; Schmutz, Jeremy; Stiller, John W; Grossman, Arthur R; Prochnik, Simon E


    Porphyra umbilicalis (laver) belongs to an ancient group of red algae (Bangiophyceae), is harvested for human food, and thrives in the harsh conditions of the upper intertidal zone. Here we present the 87.7-Mbp haploid Porphyra genome (65.8% G + C content, 13,125 gene loci) and elucidate traits that inform our understanding of the biology of red algae as one of the few multicellular eukaryotic lineages. Novel features of the Porphyra genome shared by other red algae relate to the cytoskeleton, calcium signaling, the cell cycle, and stress-tolerance mechanisms including photoprotection. Cytoskeletal motor proteins in Porphyra are restricted to a small set of kinesins that appear to be the only universal cytoskeletal motors within the red algae. Dynein motors are absent, and most red algae, including Porphyra, lack myosin. This surprisingly minimal cytoskeleton offers a potential explanation for why red algal cells and multicellular structures are more limited in size than in most multicellular lineages. Additional discoveries further relating to the stress tolerance of bangiophytes include ancestral enzymes for sulfation of the hydrophilic galactan-rich cell wall, evidence for mannan synthesis that originated before the divergence of green and red algae, and a high capacity for nutrient uptake. Our analyses provide a comprehensive understanding of the red algae, which are both commercially important and have played a major role in the evolution of other algal groups through secondary endosymbioses.

  9. EuPaGDT: a web tool tailored to design CRISPR guide RNAs for eukaryotic pathogens. (United States)

    Peng, Duo; Tarleton, Rick


    Recent development of CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing has enabled highly efficient and versatile manipulation of a variety of organisms and adaptation of the CRISPR-Cas9 system to eukaryotic pathogens has opened new avenues for studying these otherwise hard to manipulate organisms. Here we describe a webtool, Eukaryotic Pathogen gRNA Design Tool (EuPaGDT; available at, which identifies guide RNA (gRNA) in input gene(s) to guide users in arriving at well-informed and appropriate gRNA design for many eukaryotic pathogens. Flexibility in gRNA design, accommodating unique eukaryotic pathogen (gene and genome) attributes and high-throughput gRNA design are the main features that distinguish EuPaGDT from other gRNA design tools. In addition to employing an array of known principles to score and rank gRNAs, EuPaGDT implements an effective on-target search algorithm to identify gRNA targeting multi-gene families, which are highly represented in these pathogens and play important roles in host-pathogen interactions. EuPaGDT also identifies and scores microhomology sequences flanking each gRNA targeted cut-site; these sites are often essential for the microhomology-mediated end joining process used for double-stranded break repair in these organisms. EuPaGDT also assists users in designing single-stranded oligonucleotides for homology directed repair. In batch processing mode, EuPaGDT is able to process genome-scale sequences, enabling preparation of gRNA libraries for large-scale screening projects.

  10. Bacterial proteins pinpoint a single eukaryotic root

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Derelle, R.; Torruella, G.; Klimeš, V.; Brinkmann, H.; Kim, E.; Vlček, Čestmír; Lang, B.F.; Eliáš, M.


    Roč. 112, č. 7 (2015), E693-E699 ISSN 0027-8424 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA13-24983S Grant - others:GA MŠk(CZ) ED2.1.00/03.0100; Howard Hughes Medical Institute International Early Career Scientist Program(US) 55007424; Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness, European Molecular Biology Organization Young Investigator Program(ES) BFU2012-31329; Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness, "Centro de Excelencia Severo Ochoa" - European Regional Development Fund(ES) Sev-2012-0208, BES-2013-064004 Institutional support: RVO:68378050 Keywords : eukaryote phylogeny * phylogenomics * Opimoda * Diphoda * LECA Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 9.423, year: 2015

  11. DNA Mismatch Repair in Eukaryotes and Bacteria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kenji Fukui


    Full Text Available DNA mismatch repair (MMR corrects mismatched base pairs mainly caused by DNA replication errors. The fundamental mechanisms and proteins involved in the early reactions of MMR are highly conserved in almost all organisms ranging from bacteria to human. The significance of this repair system is also indicated by the fact that defects in MMR cause human hereditary nonpolyposis colon cancers as well as sporadic tumors. To date, 2 types of MMRs are known: the human type and Escherichia coli type. The basic features of the former system are expected to be universal among the vast majority of organisms including most bacteria. Here, I review the molecular mechanisms of eukaryotic and bacterial MMR, emphasizing on the similarities between them.

  12. Arabinogalactan proteins have deep roots in eukaryotes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hervé, Cécile; Siméon, Amandine; Jam, Murielle


    Arabinogalactan proteins (AGPs) are highly glycosylated, hydroxyproline-rich proteins found at the cell surface of plants, where they play key roles in developmental processes. Brown algae are marine, multicellular, photosynthetic eukaryotes. They belong to the phylum Stramenopiles, which...... is unrelated to land plants and green algae (Chloroplastida). Brown algae share common evolutionary features with other multicellular organisms, including a carbohydrate-rich cell wall. They differ markedly from plants in their cell wall composition, and AGPs have not been reported in brown algae. Here we...... glycan epitopes in a range of brown algal cell wall extracts. We demonstrated that these chimeric AGP-like core proteins are developmentally regulated in embryos of the order Fucales and showed that AGP loss of function seriously impairs the course of early embryogenesis. Our findings shine a new light...

  13. Protein splicing and its evolution in eukaryotes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Starokadomskyy P. L.


    Full Text Available Inteins, or protein introns, are parts of protein sequences that are post-translationally excised, their flanking regions (exteins being spliced together. This process was called protein splicing. Originally inteins were found in prokaryotic or unicellular eukaryotic organisms. But the general principles of post-translation protein rearrangement are evolving yielding different post-translation modification of proteins in multicellular organisms. For clarity, these non-intein mediated events call either protein rearrangements or protein editing. The most intriguing example of protein editing is proteasome-mediated splicing of antigens in vertebrates that may play important role in antigen presentation. Other examples of protein rearrangements are maturation of Hg-proteins (critical receptors in embryogenesis as well as maturation of several metabolic enzymes. Despite a lack of experimental data we try to analyze some intriguing examples of protein splicing evolution.

  14. How eukaryotic filamentous pathogens evade plant recognition. (United States)

    Oliveira-Garcia, Ely; Valent, Barbara


    Plant pathogenic fungi and oomycetes employ sophisticated mechanisms for evading host recognition. After host penetration, many fungi and oomycetes establish a biotrophic interaction. It is assumed that different strategies employed by these pathogens to avoid triggering host defence responses, including establishment of biotrophic interfacial layers between the pathogen and host, masking of invading hyphae and active suppression of host defence mechanisms, are essential for a biotrophic parasitic lifestyle. During the infection process, filamentous plant pathogens secrete various effectors, which are hypothesized to be involved in facilitating effective host infection. Live-cell imaging of fungi and oomycetes secreting fluorescently labeled effector proteins as well as functional characterization of the components of biotrophic interfaces have led to the recent progress in understanding how eukaryotic filamentous pathogens evade plant recognition. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Differential accumulation of nif structural gene mRNA in Azotobacter vinelandii. (United States)

    Hamilton, Trinity L; Jacobson, Marty; Ludwig, Marcus; Boyd, Eric S; Bryant, Donald A; Dean, Dennis R; Peters, John W


    Northern analysis was employed to investigate mRNA produced by mutant strains of Azotobacter vinelandii with defined deletions in the nif structural genes and in the intergenic noncoding regions. The results indicate that intergenic RNA secondary structures effect the differential accumulation of transcripts, supporting the high Fe protein-to-MoFe protein ratio required for optimal diazotrophic growth.

  16. The role of RNA structure at 5' untranslated region in microRNA-mediated gene regulation. (United States)

    Gu, Wanjun; Xu, Yuming; Xie, Xueying; Wang, Ting; Ko, Jae-Hong; Zhou, Tong


    Recent studies have suggested that the secondary structure of the 5' untranslated region (5' UTR) of messenger RNA (mRNA) is important for microRNA (miRNA)-mediated gene regulation in humans. mRNAs that are targeted by miRNA tend to have a higher degree of local secondary structure in their 5' UTR; however, the general role of the 5' UTR in miRNA-mediated gene regulation remains unknown. We systematically surveyed the secondary structure of 5' UTRs in both plant and animal species and found a universal trend of increased mRNA stability near the 5' cap in mRNAs that are regulated by miRNA in animals, but not in plants. Intra-genome comparison showed that gene expression level, GC content of the 5' UTR, number of miRNA target sites, and 5' UTR length may influence mRNA structure near the 5' cap. Our results suggest that the 5' UTR secondary structure performs multiple functions in regulating post-transcriptional processes. Although the local structure immediately upstream of the start codon is involved in translation initiation, RNA structure near the 5' cap site, rather than the structure of the full-length 5' UTR sequences, plays an important role in miRNA-mediated gene regulation. © 2014 Gu et al.; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press for the RNA Society.

  17. Eukaryotic protein production in designed storage organelles. (United States)

    Torrent, Margarita; Llompart, Blanca; Lasserre-Ramassamy, Sabine; Llop-Tous, Immaculada; Bastida, Miriam; Marzabal, Pau; Westerholm-Parvinen, Ann; Saloheimo, Markku; Heifetz, Peter B; Ludevid, M Dolors


    Protein bodies (PBs) are natural endoplasmic reticulum (ER) or vacuole plant-derived organelles that stably accumulate large amounts of storage proteins in seeds. The proline-rich N-terminal domain derived from the maize storage protein gamma zein (Zera) is sufficient to induce PBs in non-seed tissues of Arabidopsis and tobacco. This Zera property opens up new routes for high-level accumulation of recombinant proteins by fusion of Zera with proteins of interest. In this work we extend the advantageous properties of plant seed PBs to recombinant protein production in useful non-plant eukaryotic hosts including cultured fungal, mammalian and insect cells. Various Zera fusions with fluorescent and therapeutic proteins accumulate in induced PB-like organelles in all eukaryotic systems tested: tobacco leaves, Trichoderma reesei, several mammalian cultured cells and Sf9 insect cells. This accumulation in membranous organelles insulates both recombinant protein and host from undesirable activities of either. Recombinant protein encapsulation in these PBs facilitates stable accumulation of proteins in a protected sub-cellular compartment which results in an enhancement of protein production without affecting the viability and development of stably transformed hosts. The induced PBs also retain the high-density properties of native seed PBs which facilitate the recovery and purification of the recombinant proteins they contain. The Zera sequence provides an efficient and universal means to produce recombinant proteins by accumulation in ER-derived organelles. The remarkable cross-kingdom conservation of PB formation and their biophysical properties should have broad application in the manufacture of non-secreted recombinant proteins and suggests the existence of universal ER pathways for protein insulation.

  18. Eukaryotic protein production in designed storage organelles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saloheimo Markku


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Protein bodies (PBs are natural endoplasmic reticulum (ER or vacuole plant-derived organelles that stably accumulate large amounts of storage proteins in seeds. The proline-rich N-terminal domain derived from the maize storage protein γ zein (Zera is sufficient to induce PBs in non-seed tissues of Arabidopsis and tobacco. This Zera property opens up new routes for high-level accumulation of recombinant proteins by fusion of Zera with proteins of interest. In this work we extend the advantageous properties of plant seed PBs to recombinant protein production in useful non-plant eukaryotic hosts including cultured fungal, mammalian and insect cells. Results Various Zera fusions with fluorescent and therapeutic proteins accumulate in induced PB-like organelles in all eukaryotic systems tested: tobacco leaves, Trichoderma reesei, several mammalian cultured cells and Sf9 insect cells. This accumulation in membranous organelles insulates both recombinant protein and host from undesirable activities of either. Recombinant protein encapsulation in these PBs facilitates stable accumulation of proteins in a protected sub-cellular compartment which results in an enhancement of protein production without affecting the viability and development of stably transformed hosts. The induced PBs also retain the high-density properties of native seed PBs which facilitate the recovery and purification of the recombinant proteins they contain. Conclusion The Zera sequence provides an efficient and universal means to produce recombinant proteins by accumulation in ER-derived organelles. The remarkable cross-kingdom conservation of PB formation and their biophysical properties should have broad application in the manufacture of non-secreted recombinant proteins and suggests the existence of universal ER pathways for protein insulation.

  19. [Gene polymorphisms in the dihydrofolate reductase ( dhfr ) and dihydropteroate synthase ( dhps ) genes and structural modelling of the dhps gene in Colombian isolates of Toxoplasma gondii]. (United States)

    Cortés, Liliana Jazmín; Duque, Sofía; López, Miryam Consuelo; Moncada, Diego; Molina, Diego; Gómez-Marín, Jorge Enrique; Gunturiz, María Luz


    There are no reports describing polymorphisms in target genes of anti- Toxoplasma drugs in South American isolates. This study sought to perform cloning and sequencing of the dihydrofolate reductase ( dhfr ) and dihydropteroate-synthase ( dhps ) genes of the reference Rh strain and two Colombian isolates of Toxoplasma gondii . Two isolates were obtained from the cerebrospinal fluid of HIV-infected patients with cerebral toxoplasmosis. A DNA extraction technique and PCR assay for the dhfr and dhps genes were standardized, and the products of amplification were cloned into Escherichia coli and sequenced. One polymorphism (A « G) was found at position 235 of exon 2 in the dhps gene. In addition, two polymorphisms (G « C) at positions 259 and 260 and one polymorphism (T « G) at position 371 within exon 4 of the dhps gene were detected. In this last exon, a bioinformatic analysis revealed a non-synonymous polymorphism in the coding region that could lead to the substitution of Glu (CAA or CAG) for His (encoded by codons AAU or AAC). A structural model of the T. gondii DHPS protein was calculated, and the results revealed modifications in secondary structure due to mutations. The methods described in this study can be used as a tool to search for polymorphisms in samples from patients with different clinical manifestations of toxoplasmosis and to examine their relationship with the therapeutic response.

  20. Are maternal mitochondria the selfish entities that are masters of the cells of eukaryotic multicellular organisms? (United States)

    Agnati, Luigi F; Barlow, Peter W; Baldelli, E; Baluska, Frantisek


    The Energide concept, as well as the endosymbiotic theory of eukaryotic cell organization and evolution, proposes that present-day cells of eukaryotic organisms are mosaics of specialized and cooperating units, or organelles. Some of these units were originally free-living prokaryotes, which were engulfed during evolutionary time. Mitochondria represent one of these types of previously independent organisms, the Energide, is another type. This new perspective on the organization of the cell has been further expanded to reveal the concept of a public milieu, the cytosol, in which Energides and mitochondria live, each with their own private internal milieu. The present paper discusses how the endosymbiotic theory implicates a new hypothesis about the hierarchical and communicational organization of the integrated prokaryotic components of the eukaryotic cell and provides a new angle from which to consider the theory of evolution and its bearing upon cellular complexity. Thus, it is proposed that the "selfish gene" hypothesis of Dawkins1 is not the only possible perspective for comprehending genomic and cellular evolution. Our proposal is that maternal mitochondria are the selfish "master" entities of the eukaryotic cell with respect not only to their propagation from cell-to-cell and from generation-to-generation but also to their regulation of all other cellular functions. However, it should be recognized that the concept of "master" and "servant" cell components is a metaphor; in present-day living organisms their organellar components are considered to be interdependent and inseparable.

  1. EuMicroSatdb: A database for microsatellites in the sequenced genomes of eukaryotes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grover Atul


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Microsatellites have immense utility as molecular markers in different fields like genome characterization and mapping, phylogeny and evolutionary biology. Existing microsatellite databases are of limited utility for experimental and computational biologists with regard to their content and information output. EuMicroSatdb (Eukaryotic MicroSatellite database is a web based relational database for easy and efficient positional mining of microsatellites from sequenced eukaryotic genomes. Description A user friendly web interface has been developed for microsatellite data retrieval using Active Server Pages (ASP. The backend database codes for data extraction and assembly have been written using Perl based scripts and C++. Precise need based microsatellites data retrieval is possible using different input parameters like microsatellite type (simple perfect or compound perfect, repeat unit length (mono- to hexa-nucleotide, repeat number, microsatellite length and chromosomal location in the genome. Furthermore, information about clustering of different microsatellites in the genome can also be retrieved. Finally, to facilitate primer designing for PCR amplification of any desired microsatellite locus, 200 bp upstream and downstream sequences are provided. Conclusion The database allows easy systematic retrieval of comprehensive information about simple and compound microsatellites, microsatellite clusters and their locus coordinates in 31 sequenced eukaryotic genomes. The information content of the database is useful in different areas of research like gene tagging, genome mapping, population genetics, germplasm characterization and in understanding microsatellite dynamics in eukaryotic genomes.

  2. Evaluating bacterial gene-finding HMM structures as probabilistic logic programs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mørk, Søren; Holmes, Ian


    Motivation: Probabilistic logic programming offers a powerful way to describe and evaluate structured statistical models. To investigate the practicality of probabilistic logic programming for structure learning in bioinformatics, we undertook a simplified bacterial gene-finding benchmark in PRISM...... modeling and three-state versions of the five model structures. The models are all represented as probabilistic logic programs and evaluated using the PRISM machine learning system in terms of statistical information criteria and gene-finding prediction accuracy, in two bacterial genomes. Neither of our...

  3. Automating gene library synthesis by structure-based combinatorial protein engineering: examples from plant sesquiterpene synthases. (United States)

    Dokarry, Melissa; Laurendon, Caroline; O'Maille, Paul E


    Structure-based combinatorial protein engineering (SCOPE) is a homology-independent recombination method to create multiple crossover gene libraries by assembling defined combinations of structural elements ranging from single mutations to domains of protein structure. SCOPE was originally inspired by DNA shuffling, which mimics recombination during meiosis, where mutations from parental genes are "shuffled" to create novel combinations in the resulting progeny. DNA shuffling utilizes sequence identity between parental genes to mediate template-switching events (the annealing and extension of one parental gene fragment on another) in PCR reassembly reactions to generate crossovers and hence recombination between parental genes. In light of the conservation of protein structure and degeneracy of sequence, SCOPE was developed to enable the "shuffling" of distantly related genes with no requirement for sequence identity. The central principle involves the use of oligonucleotides to encode for crossover regions to choreograph template-switching events during PCR assembly of gene fragments to create chimeric genes. This approach was initially developed to create libraries of hybrid DNA polymerases from distantly related parents, and later developed to create a combinatorial mutant library of sesquiterpene synthases to explore the catalytic landscapes underlying the functional divergence of related enzymes. This chapter presents a simplified protocol of SCOPE that can be integrated with different mutagenesis techniques and is suitable for automation by liquid-handling robots. Two examples are presented to illustrate the application of SCOPE to create gene libraries using plant sesquiterpene synthases as the model system. In the first example, we outline how to create an active-site library as a series of complex mixtures of diverse mutants. In the second example, we outline how to create a focused library as an array of individual clones to distil minimal combinations of

  4. The desA gene of the cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. strain PCC6803 is the structural gene for delta 12 desaturase. (United States)

    Wada, H; Avelange-Macherel, M H; Murata, N


    The desA gene of the cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. strain PCC6803 was expressed in Escherichia coli, which does not contain any fatty acid desaturase. The product of the desA gene catalyzed the desaturation of fatty acids at the delta 12 position. This result demonstrates that desA is the structural gene for a delta 12 desaturase.

  5. How and why DNA barcodes underestimate the diversity of microbial eukaryotes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gwenael Piganeau

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Because many picoplanktonic eukaryotic species cannot currently be maintained in culture, direct sequencing of PCR-amplified 18S ribosomal gene DNA fragments from filtered sea-water has been successfully used to investigate the astounding diversity of these organisms. The recognition of many novel planktonic organisms is thus based solely on their 18S rDNA sequence. However, a species delimited by its 18S rDNA sequence might contain many cryptic species, which are highly differentiated in their protein coding sequences. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here, we investigate the issue of species identification from one gene to the whole genome sequence. Using 52 whole genome DNA sequences, we estimated the global genetic divergence in protein coding genes between organisms from different lineages and compared this to their ribosomal gene sequence divergences. We show that this relationship between proteome divergence and 18S divergence is lineage dependent. Unicellular lineages have especially low 18S divergences relative to their protein sequence divergences, suggesting that 18S ribosomal genes are too conservative to assess planktonic eukaryotic diversity. We provide an explanation for this lineage dependency, which suggests that most species with large effective population sizes will show far less divergence in 18S than protein coding sequences. CONCLUSIONS: There is therefore a trade-off between using genes that are easy to amplify in all species, but which by their nature are highly conserved and underestimate the true number of species, and using genes that give a better description of the number of species, but which are more difficult to amplify. We have shown that this trade-off differs between unicellular and multicellular organisms as a likely consequence of differences in effective population sizes. We anticipate that biodiversity of microbial eukaryotic species is underestimated and that numerous "cryptic species" will become

  6. Large-scale patterns in biodiversity of microbial eukaryotes from the abyssal sea floor. (United States)

    Scheckenbach, Frank; Hausmann, Klaus; Wylezich, Claudia; Weitere, Markus; Arndt, Hartmut


    Eukaryotic microbial life at abyssal depths remains "uncharted territory" in eukaryotic microbiology. No phylogenetic surveys have focused on the largest benthic environment on this planet, the abyssal plains. Moreover, knowledge of the spatial patterns of deep-sea community structure is scanty, and what little is known originates primarily from morphology-based studies of foraminiferans. Here we report on the great phylogenetic diversity of microbial eukaryotic communities of all 3 abyssal plains of the southeastern Atlantic Ocean--the Angola, Cape, and Guinea Abyssal Plains--from depths of 5,000 m. A high percentage of retrieved clones had no close representatives in genetic databases. Many clones were affiliated with parasitic species. Furthermore, differences between the communities of the Cape Abyssal Plain and the other 2 abyssal plains point to environmental gradients apparently shaping community structure at the landscape level. On a regional scale, local species diversity showed much less variation. Our study provides insight into the community composition of microbial eukaryotes on larger scales from the wide abyssal sea floor realm and marks a direction for more detailed future studies aimed at improving our understanding of deep-sea microbes at the community and ecosystem levels, as well as the ecological principles at play.

  7. Evolution of viruses and cells: do we need a fourth domain of life to explain the origin of eukaryotes? (United States)

    Moreira, David; López-García, Purificación


    The recent discovery of diverse very large viruses, such as the mimivirus, has fostered a profusion of hypotheses positing that these viruses define a new domain of life together with the three cellular ones (Archaea, Bacteria and Eucarya). It has also been speculated that they have played a key role in the origin of eukaryotes as donors of important genes or even as the structures at the origin of the nucleus. Thanks to the increasing availability of genome sequences for these giant viruses, those hypotheses are amenable to testing via comparative genomic and phylogenetic analyses. This task is made very difficult by the high evolutionary rate of viruses, which induces phylogenetic artefacts, such as long branch attraction, when inadequate methods are applied. It can be demonstrated that phylogenetic trees supporting viruses as a fourth domain of life are artefactual. In most cases, the presence of homologues of cellular genes in viruses is best explained by recurrent horizontal gene transfer from cellular hosts to their infecting viruses and not the opposite. Today, there is no solid evidence for the existence of a viral domain of life or for a significant implication of viruses in the origin of the cellular domains. © 2015 The Author(s).

  8. Cationized bovine serum albumin as gene carrier: Influence of specific secondary structure on DNA complexibility and gene transfection. (United States)

    Du, Jianwei; Li, Bangbang; Zhang, Peng; Wang, Youxiang


    In this research, BSA, one of the natural rigid globular proteins with ca. 51% of α-helix secondary structure, was utilized to prepare cationized BSA (cBSA) as gene carrier. Tetraethylenepentamine (TEPA) or polyethylenimine (PEI1800) was grafted to BSA with different grafting levels. Based on the circular dichoism (CD) spectra, all cBSA remained α-helical structure to some degree. This was exciting to endow cBSA with quite different DNA complexibility and cellular biology behavior from the random coiled and flexible polycations such as PEI and poly-l-lysine (PLL). Strangely, the DNA condensability decreased with the increment of TEPA or PEI1800 grafting level. Also, the cBSA could condense DNA effectively to form irregular nanoparticles around 50-200nm above N/P ratio of 10. On account of the excellent hydration of BSA, the cBSA/DNA complexes revealed good colloidal stability under physiological salt condition. Cell culture experiments indicated this BSA-based gene carrier possessed good cellular compatibility. Surprisingly, cBSA/DNA complexes could be uptaken excellently by up to 90% cells. This might be owing to the agitation effect of α-helical structure and the positive potential of these complexes. BSA-PEI1800/DNA complexes with quick endosome escape even had transfection efficiency as high as PEI25k/DNA complexes. Overall, this paper provided us the potential of cBSA as gene carrier and might have some instructions in the design of protein-based gene delivery system. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Insight into the Recent Genome Duplication of the Halophilic Yeast Hortaea werneckii: Combining an Improved Genome with Gene Expression and Chromatin Structure

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    Sunita Sinha


    Full Text Available Extremophilic organisms demonstrate the flexibility and adaptability of basic biological processes by highlighting how cell physiology adapts to environmental extremes. Few eukaryotic extremophiles have been well studied and only a small number are amenable to laboratory cultivation and manipulation. A detailed characterization of the genome architecture of such organisms is important to illuminate how they adapt to environmental stresses. One excellent example of a fungal extremophile is the halophile Hortaea werneckii (Pezizomycotina, Dothideomycetes, Capnodiales, a yeast-like fungus able to thrive at near-saturating concentrations of sodium chloride and which is also tolerant to both UV irradiation and desiccation. Given its unique lifestyle and its remarkably recent whole genome duplication, H. werneckii provides opportunities for testing the role of genome duplications and adaptability to extreme environments. We previously assembled the genome of H. werneckii using short-read sequencing technology and found a remarkable degree of gene duplication. Technology limitations, however, precluded high-confidence annotation of the entire genome. We therefore revisited the H. wernickii genome using long-read, single-molecule sequencing and provide an improved genome assembly which, combined with transcriptome and nucleosome analysis, provides a useful resource for fungal halophile genomics. Remarkably, the ∼50 Mb H. wernickii genome contains 15,974 genes of which 95% (7608 are duplicates formed by a recent whole genome duplication (WGD, with an average of 5% protein sequence divergence between them. We found that the WGD is extraordinarily recent, and compared to Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the majority of the genome’s ohnologs have not diverged at the level of gene expression of chromatin structure.

  10. The structure and organization of the human follicle-stimulating hormone receptor (FSHR) gene

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gromoll, J; Pekel, E.; Nieschlag, E. [Institute of Reproductive Medicine of the Univ., Muenster (Germany)


    The structure and organization of the human follicle-stimulating hormone receptor (FSHR) gene were determined by either screening a phage library of human genomic DNA or applying the long PCR technique to amplify different exon pairs with their corresponding introns. The FSHR gene spans a region of 54 kb and consists of 10 exons and 9 introns. Most of the extracellular domain is encoded by 9 exons, ranging in length between 69 and 251 bp; the C-terminal part of the extracellular domain, the transmembrane domain, and the intracellular domain are encoded by the large exon 10 (1234 bp). Overall the gene encodes 695 amino acids. The structure of the human FSHR displays a striking similarity to that of the previously characterized rat FSHR gene, with a high degree of conservation in exon sizes and exon/intron junctions. 20 refs., 2 tabs.

  11. Comparative Annotation of Viral Genomes with Non-Conserved Gene Structure

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    de Groot, Saskia; Mailund, Thomas; Hein, Jotun


    allows for coding in unidirectional nested and overlapping reading frames, to annotate two homologous aligned viral genomes. Our method does not insist on conserved gene structure between the two sequences, thus making it applicable for the pairwise comparison of more distantly related sequences. Results...... that conservation of gene structure on top of nucleotide sequence is a valuable source of information, especially in distantly related genomes.......Motivation: Detecting genes in viral genomes is a complex task. Due to the biological necessity of them being constrained in length, RNA viruses in particular tend to code in overlapping reading frames. Since one amino acid is encoded by a triplet of nucleic acids, up to three genes may be coded...

  12. Eukaryotic translation initiation factor 5A of wheat: Identification ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)



    May 18, 2009 ... Regulation of senescence by eukaryotic translation initiation factor 5A: implications for plant growth and development. Trends Plant Sci. 9: 174-179. Zhou et al. 2117. Tome ME, Fiser SM, Payne CM, Gerner EW (1997). Excess putrescine accumulation inhibits the formation of modified eukaryotic initiation.

  13. Causes and consequences of eukaryotization through mutualistic endosymbiosis and compartmentalization

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hengeveld, R.; Fedonkin, M.A.


    This paper reviews and extends ideas of eukaryotization by endosymbiosis. These ideas are put within an historical context of processes that may have led up to eukaryotization and those that seem to have resulted from this process. Our starting point for considering the emergence and development of

  14. Structure, expression differentiation and evolution of duplicated fiber developmental genes in Gossypium barbadense and G. hirsutum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhang Tianzhen


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Both Gossypium hirsutum and G. barbadense probably originated from a common ancestor, but they have very different agronomic and fiber quality characters. Here we selected 17 fiber development-related genes to study their structures, tree topologies, chromosomal location and expression patterns to better understand the interspecific divergence of fiber development genes in the two cultivated tetraploid species. Results The sequence and structure of 70.59% genes were conserved with the same exon length and numbers in different species, while 29.41% genes showed diversity. There were 15 genes showing independent evolution between the A- and D-subgenomes after polyploid formation, while two evolved via different degrees of colonization. Chromosomal location showed that 22 duplicate genes were located in which at least one fiber quality QTL was detected. The molecular evolutionary rates suggested that the D-subgenome of the allotetraploid underwent rapid evolutionary differentiation, and selection had acted at the tetraploid level. Expression profiles at fiber initiation and early elongation showed that the transcripts levels of most genes were higher in Hai7124 than in TM-1. During the primary-secondary transition period, expression of most genes peaked earlier in TM-1 than in Hai7124. Homeolog expression profile showed that A-subgenome, or the combination of A- and D-subgenomes, played critical roles in fiber quality divergence of G. hirsutum and G. barbadense. However, the expression of D-subgenome alone also played an important role. Conclusion Integrating analysis of the structure and expression to fiber development genes, suggests selective breeding for certain desirable fiber qualities played an important role in divergence of G. hirsutum and G. barbadense.

  15. Inference of gene regulatory networks with sparse structural equation models exploiting genetic perturbations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaodong Cai

    Full Text Available Integrating genetic perturbations with gene expression data not only improves accuracy of regulatory network topology inference, but also enables learning of causal regulatory relations between genes. Although a number of methods have been developed to integrate both types of data, the desiderata of efficient and powerful algorithms still remains. In this paper, sparse structural equation models (SEMs are employed to integrate both gene expression data and cis-expression quantitative trait loci (cis-eQTL, for modeling gene regulatory networks in accordance with biological evidence about genes regulating or being regulated by a small number of genes. A systematic inference method named sparsity-aware maximum likelihood (SML is developed for SEM estimation. Using simulated directed acyclic or cyclic networks, the SML performance is compared with that of two state-of-the-art algorithms: the adaptive Lasso (AL based scheme, and the QTL-directed dependency graph (QDG method. Computer simulations demonstrate that the novel SML algorithm offers significantly better performance than the AL-based and QDG algorithms across all sample sizes from 100 to 1,000, in terms of detection power and false discovery rate, in all the cases tested that include acyclic or cyclic networks of 10, 30 and 300 genes. The SML method is further applied to infer a network of 39 human genes that are related to the immune function and are chosen to have a reliable eQTL per gene. The resulting network consists of 9 genes and 13 edges. Most of the edges represent interactions reasonably expected from experimental evidence, while the remaining may just indicate the emergence of new interactions. The sparse SEM and efficient SML algorithm provide an effective means of exploiting both gene expression and perturbation data to infer gene regulatory networks. An open-source computer program implementing the SML algorithm is freely available upon request.

  16. The genomic structure of the human Charcot-Leyden crystal protein gene is analogous to those of the galectin genes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dyer, K.D. [National Inst. of Health, Bethesda, MD (United States)]|[Georgetown Univ. Medical Center, Washington, DC (United States); Handen, J.S.; Rosenberg, H.F. [National Inst. of Health, Bethesda, MD (United States)


    The Charcot-Leyden crystal (CLC) protein, or eosinophil lysophospholipase, is a characteristic protein of human eosinophils and basophils; recent work has demonstrated that the CLC protein is both structurally and functionally related to the galectin family of {beta}-galactoside binding proteins. The galectins as a group share a number of features in common, including a linear ligand binding site encoded on a single exon. In this work, we demonstrate that the intron-exon structure of the gene encoding CLC is analogous to those encoding the galectins. The coding sequence of the CLC gene is divided into four exons, with the entire {beta}-galactoside binding site encoded by exon III. We have isolated CLC {beta}-galactoside binding sites from both orangutan (Pongo pygmaeus) and murine (Mus musculus) genomic DNAs, both encoded on single exons, and noted conservation of the amino acids shown to interact directly with the {beta}-galactoside ligand. The most likely interpretation of these results suggests the occurrence of one or more exon duplication and insertion events, resulting in the distribution of this lectin domain to CLC as well as to the multiple galectin genes. 35 refs., 3 figs.

  17. Gene organization in rice revealed by full-length cDNA mapping and gene expression analysis through microarray.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kouji Satoh

    Full Text Available Rice (Oryza sativa L. is a model organism for the functional genomics of monocotyledonous plants since the genome size is considerably smaller than those of other monocotyledonous plants. Although highly accurate genome sequences of indica and japonica rice are available, additional resources such as full-length complementary DNA (FL-cDNA sequences are also indispensable for comprehensive analyses of gene structure and function. We cross-referenced 28.5K individual loci in the rice genome defined by mapping of 578K FL-cDNA clones with the 56K loci predicted in the TIGR genome assembly. Based on the annotation status and the presence of corresponding cDNA clones, genes were classified into 23K annotated expressed (AE genes, 33K annotated non-expressed (ANE genes, and 5.5K non-annotated expressed (NAE genes. We developed a 60mer oligo-array for analysis of gene expression from each locus. Analysis of gene structures and expression levels revealed that the general features of gene structure and expression of NAE and ANE genes were considerably different from those of AE genes. The results also suggested that the cloning efficiency of rice FL-cDNA is associated with the transcription activity of the corresponding genetic locus, although other factors may also have an effect. Comparison of the coverage of FL-cDNA among gene families suggested that FL-cDNA from genes encoding rice- or eukaryote-specific domains, and those involved in regulatory functions were difficult to produce in bacterial cells. Collectively, these results indicate that rice genes can be divided into distinct groups based on transcription activity and gene structure, and that the coverage bias of FL-cDNA clones exists due to the incompatibility of certain eukaryotic genes in bacteria.

  18. Optimal eukaryotic 18S and universal 16S/18S ribosomal RNA primers and their application in a study of symbiosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yong Wang

    Full Text Available Eukaryotic 18S ribosomal RNA (rRNA gene primers that feature a wide coverage are critical in detecting the composition of eukaryotic microscopic organisms in ecosystems. Here, we predicted 18S rRNA primers based on consecutive conserved sites and evaluated their coverage efficiency and scope of application to different eukaryotic groups. After evaluation, eight of them were considered as qualified 18S primers based on coverage rate. Next, we examined common conserved regions in prokaryotic 16S and eukaryotic 18S rRNA sequences to design 16S/18S universal primers. Three 16S/18S candidate primers, U515, U1390 and U1492, were then considered to be suitable for simultaneous amplification of the rRNA sequences in three domains. Eukaryotic 18S and prokaryotic 16S rRNA genes in a sponge were amplified simultaneously using universal primers U515 and U1390, and the subsequent sorting of pyrosequenced reads revealed some distinctive communities in different parts of the sample. The real difference in biodiversity between prokaryotic and eukaryotic symbionts could be discerned as the dissimilarity between OTUs was increased from 0.005 to 0.1. A network of the communities in external and internal parts of the sponge illustrated the co-variation of some unique microbes in certain parts of the sponge, suggesting that the universal primers are useful in simultaneous detection of prokaryotic and eukaryotic microbial communities.

  19. Regulation of genes involved in cell wall synthesis and structure during Ustilago maydis dimorphism. (United States)

    Robledo-Briones, Mariana; Ruiz-Herrera, José


    The cell wall is the structure that provides the shape to fungal cells and protects them from the difference in osmotic pressure existing between the cytosol and the external medium. Accordingly, changes in structure and composition of the fungal wall must occur during cell differentiation, including the dimorphic transition of fungi. We analyzed, by use of microarrays, the transcriptional regulation of the 639 genes identified to be involved in cell wall synthesis and structure plus the secretome of the Basidiomycota species Ustilago maydis during its dimorphic transition induced by a change in pH. Of these, 189 were differentially expressed during the process, and using as control two monomorphic mutants, one yeast like and the other mycelium constitutive, 66 genes specific of dimorphism were identified. Most of these genes were up-regulated in the mycelial phase. These included CHS genes, genes involved in β-1,6-glucan synthesis, N-glycosylation, and proteins containing a residue of glycosylphosphatidylinositol, and a number of genes from the secretome. The possible significance of these data on cell wall plasticity is discussed. © 2012 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by Blackwell Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Phylogenomics of the archaeal flagellum: rare horizontal gene transfer in a unique motility structure

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    Brochier-Armanet Celine


    Full Text Available Abstract Background As bacteria, motile archaeal species swim by means of rotating flagellum structures driven by a proton gradient force. Interestingly, experimental data have shown that the archaeal flagellum is non-homologous to the bacterial flagellum either in terms of overall structure, components and assembly. The growing number of complete archaeal genomes now permits to investigate the evolution of this unique motility system. Results We report here an exhaustive phylogenomic analysis of the components of the archaeal flagellum. In all complete archaeal genomes, the genes coding for flagellum components are co-localized in one or two well-conserved genomic clusters showing two different types of organizations. Despite their small size, these genes harbor a good phylogenetic signal that allows reconstruction of their evolutionary histories. These support a history of mainly vertical inheritance for the components of this unique motility system, and an interesting possible ancient horizontal gene transfer event (HGT of a whole flagellum-coding gene cluster between Euryarchaeota and Crenarchaeota. Conclusion Our study is one of the few exhaustive phylogenomics analyses of a non-informational cell machinery from the third domain of life. We propose an evolutionary scenario for the evolution of the components of the archaeal flagellum. Moreover, we show that the components of the archaeal flagellar system have not been frequently transferred among archaeal species, indicating that gene fixation following HGT can also be rare for genes encoding components of large macromolecular complexes with a structural role.

  1. DNA breaks and chromatin structural changes enhance the transcription of autoimmune regulator target genes. (United States)

    Guha, Mithu; Saare, Mario; Maslovskaja, Julia; Kisand, Kai; Liiv, Ingrid; Haljasorg, Uku; Tasa, Tõnis; Metspalu, Andres; Milani, Lili; Peterson, Pärt


    The autoimmune regulator (AIRE) protein is the key factor in thymic negative selection of autoreactive T cells by promoting the ectopic expression of tissue-specific genes in the thymic medullary epithelium. Mutations in AIRE cause a monogenic autoimmune disease called autoimmune polyendocrinopathy-candidiasis-ectodermal dystrophy. AIRE has been shown to promote DNA breaks via its interaction with topoisomerase 2 (TOP2). In this study, we investigated topoisomerase-induced DNA breaks and chromatin structural alterations in conjunction with AIRE-dependent gene expression. Using RNA sequencing, we found that inhibition of TOP2 religation activity by etoposide in AIRE-expressing cells had a synergistic effect on genes with low expression levels. AIRE-mediated transcription was not only enhanced by TOP2 inhibition but also by the TOP1 inhibitor camptothecin. The transcriptional activation was associated with structural rearrangements in chromatin, notably the accumulation of γH2AX and the exchange of histone H1 with HMGB1 at AIRE target gene promoters. In addition, we found the transcriptional up-regulation to co-occur with the chromatin structural changes within the genomic cluster of carcinoembryonic antigen-like cellular adhesion molecule genes. Overall, our results suggest that the presence of AIRE can trigger molecular events leading to an altered chromatin landscape and the enhanced transcription of low-expressed genes. © 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  2. Gene finding with a hidden Markov model of genome structure and evolution

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Jakob Skou; Hein, Jotun


    the model are linear in alignment length and genome number. The model is applied to the problem of gene finding. The benefit of modelling sequence evolution is demonstrated both in a range of simulations and on a set of orthologous human/mouse gene pairs. AVAILABILITY: Free availability over the Internet...... annotation. The modelling of evolution by the existing comparative gene finders leaves room for improvement. Results: A probabilistic model of both genome structure and evolution is designed. This type of model is called an Evolutionary Hidden Markov Model (EHMM), being composed of an HMM and a set of region...

  3. Genome change in wheat observed through the structure and expression of α/β-gliadin genes. (United States)

    Kawaura, K; Wu, J; Matsumoto, T; Kanamori, H; Katagiri, S; Ogihara, Y


    To better understand genome structure and the expression of α/β-gliadin multigenes in hexaploid wheat, bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) clones containing α/β-gliadin genes from the three loci, Gli-A2, Gli-B2, and Gli-D2, were screened. Based on their restriction fragment patterns, we selected five BAC clones, namely, two clones for Gli-A2, two clones for Gli-B2, and one clone for Gli-D2, to fully sequence. Approximately 200 kb was sequenced for each locus. In total, twelve α/β-gliadin intact genes and four pseudogenes were found, and retrotransposons or other transposons existed in each BAC clone. Dot-plot analysis revealed the pattern of genome segmental duplication within each BAC. We calculated time since duplication of each set of α/β-gliadin genes and insertion of retrotransposons. Duplication of all adjacent genes within the same BAC clone took place before or after allotetrapolyploidization, but duplication of certain genes occurred before diploid differentiation of wheat species. Retrotransposons were also inserted before and after the segmental duplication events. Furthermore, translocation of α/β-gliadin genes from chromosomes 1 to 6 apparently occurred before the diversification of various wheat genomes. Duplication of genome segments containing α/β-gliadin genes and retrotransposons were brought about through unequal crossing-over or saltatory replication and α/β-gliadin genes per se were duplicated without any recombination events. Out of twelve intact α/β-gliadin genes detected from their sequences, nine were expressed, although their patterns of expression were distinct. Since they have similar cis-elements and promoter structures, the mechanisms underlying their distinct gene expression and possible applications are discussed.

  4. A framework for scalable parameter estimation of gene circuit models using structural information. (United States)

    Kuwahara, Hiroyuki; Fan, Ming; Wang, Suojin; Gao, Xin


    Systematic and scalable parameter estimation is a key to construct complex gene regulatory models and to ultimately facilitate an integrative systems biology approach to quantitatively understand the molecular mechanisms underpinning gene regulation. Here, we report a novel framework for efficient and scalable parameter estimation that focuses specifically on modeling of gene circuits. Exploiting the structure commonly found in gene circuit models, this framework decomposes a system of coupled rate equations into individual ones and efficiently integrates them separately to reconstruct the mean time evolution of the gene products. The accuracy of the parameter estimates is refined by iteratively increasing the accuracy of numerical integration using the model structure. As a case study, we applied our framework to four gene circuit models with complex dynamics based on three synthetic datasets and one time series microarray data set. We compared our framework to three state-of-the-art parameter estimation methods and found that our approach consistently generated higher quality parameter solutions efficiently. Although many general-purpose parameter estimation methods have been applied for modeling of gene circuits, our results suggest that the use of more tailored approaches to use domain-specific information may be a key to reverse engineering of complex biological systems. Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

  5. A framework for scalable parameter estimation of gene circuit models using structural information

    KAUST Repository

    Kuwahara, Hiroyuki


    Motivation: Systematic and scalable parameter estimation is a key to construct complex gene regulatory models and to ultimately facilitate an integrative systems biology approach to quantitatively understand the molecular mechanisms underpinning gene regulation. Results: Here, we report a novel framework for efficient and scalable parameter estimation that focuses specifically on modeling of gene circuits. Exploiting the structure commonly found in gene circuit models, this framework decomposes a system of coupled rate equations into individual ones and efficiently integrates them separately to reconstruct the mean time evolution of the gene products. The accuracy of the parameter estimates is refined by iteratively increasing the accuracy of numerical integration using the model structure. As a case study, we applied our framework to four gene circuit models with complex dynamics based on three synthetic datasets and one time series microarray data set. We compared our framework to three state-of-the-art parameter estimation methods and found that our approach consistently generated higher quality parameter solutions efficiently. Although many general-purpose parameter estimation methods have been applied for modeling of gene circuits, our results suggest that the use of more tailored approaches to use domain-specific information may be a key to reverse engineering of complex biological systems. The Author 2013.

  6. Genetic Diversity of Eukaryotic Plankton Assemblages in Eastern Tibetan Lakes Differing by their Salinity and Altitude (United States)


    Eukaryotic plankton assemblages in 11 high-mountain lakes located at altitudes of 2,817 to 5,134 m and over a total area of ca. one million square kilometers on the Eastern Tibet Plateau, spanning a salinity gradient from 0.2 (freshwater) to 187.1 g l−1 (hypersaline), were investigated by cultivation independent methods. Two 18S rRNA gene-based fingerprint approaches, i.e., the terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) with subsequent band sequencing were applied. Samples of the same lake type (e.g., freshwater) generally shared more of the same bands or T-RFs than samples of different types (e.g., freshwater versus saline). However, a certain number of bands or T-RFs among the samples within each lake were distinct, indicating the potential presence of significant genetic diversity within each lake. PCA indicated that the most significant environmental gradient among the investigated lakes was salinity. The observed molecular profiles could be further explained (17–24%) by ion percentage of chloride, carbonate and bicarbonate, and sulfate, which were also covaried with change of altitude and latitude. Sequence analysis of selected major DGGE bands revealed many sequences (largely protist) that are not related to any known cultures but to uncultured eukaryotic picoplankton and unidentified eukaryotes. One fourth of the retrieved sequences showed ≤97% similarity to the closest sequences in the GenBank. Sequences related to well-known heterotrophic nanoflagellates were not retrieved from the DGGE gels. Several groups of eukaryotic plankton, which were found worldwide and detected in low land lakes, were also detected in habitats located above 4,400 m, suggesting a cosmopolitan distribution of these phylotypes. Collectively, our study suggests that there was a high beta-diversity of eukaryotic plankton assemblages in the investigated Tibetan lakes shaped by multiple geographic and environmental factors

  7. Eukaryotic LYR Proteins Interact with Mitochondrial Protein Complexes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heike Angerer


    Full Text Available In eukaryotic cells, mitochondria host ancient essential bioenergetic and biosynthetic pathways. LYR (leucine/tyrosine/arginine motif proteins (LYRMs of the Complex1_LYR-like superfamily interact with protein complexes of bacterial origin. Many LYR proteins function as extra subunits (LYRM3 and LYRM6 or novel assembly factors (LYRM7, LYRM8, ACN9 and FMC1 of the oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS core complexes. Structural insights into complex I accessory subunits LYRM6 and LYRM3 have been provided by analyses of EM and X-ray structures of complex I from bovine and the yeast Yarrowia lipolytica, respectively. Combined structural and biochemical studies revealed that LYRM6 resides at the matrix arm close to the ubiquinone reduction site. For LYRM3, a position at the distal proton-pumping membrane arm facing the matrix space is suggested. Both LYRMs are supposed to anchor an acyl-carrier protein (ACPM independently to complex I. The function of this duplicated protein interaction of ACPM with respiratory complex I is still unknown. Analysis of protein-protein interaction screens, genetic analyses and predicted multi-domain LYRMs offer further clues on an interaction network and adaptor-like function of LYR proteins in mitochondria.

  8. Plant plasma membrane-bound staphylococcal-like DNases as a novel class of eukaryotic nucleases

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    Leśniewicz Krzysztof


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The activity of degradative nucleases responsible for genomic DNA digestion has been observed in all kingdoms of life. It is believed that the main function of DNA degradation occurring during plant programmed cell death is redistribution of nucleic acid derived products such as nitrogen, phosphorus and nucleotide bases. Plant degradative nucleases that have been studied so far belong mainly to the S1-type family and were identified in cellular compartments containing nucleic acids or in the organelles where they are stored before final application. However, the explanation of how degraded DNA components are exported from the dying cells for further reutilization remains open. Results Bioinformatic and experimental data presented in this paper indicate that two Arabidopsis staphylococcal-like nucleases, named CAN1 and CAN2, are anchored to the cell membrane via N-terminal myristoylation and palmitoylation modifications. Both proteins possess a unique hybrid structure in their catalytic domain consisting of staphylococcal nuclease-like and tRNA synthetase anticodon binding-like motifs. They are neutral, Ca2+-dependent nucleaces showing a different specificity toward the ssDNA, dsDNA and RNA substrates. A study of microarray experiments and endogenous nuclease activity revealed that expression of CAN1 gene correlates with different forms of programmed cell death, while the CAN2 gene is constitutively expressed. Conclusions In this paper we present evidence showing that two plant staphylococcal-like nucleases belong to a new, as yet unidentified class of eukaryotic nucleases, characterized by unique plasma membrane localization. The identification of this class of nucleases indicates that plant cells possess additional, so far uncharacterized, mechanisms responsible for DNA and RNA degradation. The potential functions of these nucleases in relation to their unique intracellular location are discussed.

  9. A highly conserved gene island of three genes on chromosome 3B of hexaploid wheat: diverse gene function and genomic structure maintained in a tightly linked block

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ma Wujun


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The complexity of the wheat genome has resulted from waves of retrotransposable element insertions. Gene deletions and disruptions generated by the fast replacement of repetitive elements in wheat have resulted in disruption of colinearity at a micro (sub-megabase level among the cereals. In view of genomic changes that are possible within a given time span, conservation of genes between species tends to imply an important functional or regional constraint that does not permit a change in genomic structure. The ctg1034 contig completed in this paper was initially studied because it was assigned to the Sr2 resistance locus region, but detailed mapping studies subsequently assigned it to the long arm of 3B and revealed its unusual features. Results BAC shotgun sequencing of the hexaploid wheat (Triticum aestivum cv. Chinese Spring genome has been used to assemble a group of 15 wheat BACs from the chromosome 3B physical map FPC contig ctg1034 into a 783,553 bp genomic sequence. This ctg1034 sequence was annotated for biological features such as genes and transposable elements. A three-gene island was identified among >80% repetitive DNA sequence. Using bioinformatics analysis there were no observable similarity in their gene functions. The ctg1034 gene island also displayed complete conservation of gene order and orientation with syntenic gene islands found in publicly available genome sequences of Brachypodium distachyon, Oryza sativa, Sorghum bicolor and Zea mays, even though the intergenic space and introns were divergent. Conclusion We propose that ctg1034 is located within the heterochromatic C-band region of deletion bin 3BL7 based on the identification of heterochromatic tandem repeats and presence of significant matches to chromodomain-containing gypsy LTR retrotransposable elements. We also speculate that this location, among other highly repetitive sequences, may account for the relative stability in gene order and

  10. Structural analysis of DNA sequence: evidence for lateral gene transfer in Thermotoga maritima

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Worning, Peder; Jensen, Lars Juhl; Nelson, K. E.


    The recently published complete DNA sequence of the bacterium Thermotoga maritima provides evidence, based on protein sequence conservation, for lateral gene transfer between Archaea and Bacteria. We introduce a new method of periodicity analysis of DNA sequences, based on structural parameters......, which brings independent evidence for the lateral gene transfer in the genome of T.maritima, The structural analysis relates the Archaea-like DNA sequences to the genome of Pyrococcus horikoshii. Analysis of 24 complete genomic DNA sequences shows different periodicity patterns for organisms...

  11. Arylamine n-acetyltransferases in eukaryotic microorganisms (United States)

    Microorganisms can survive highly toxic environments through numerous xenobiotic metabolizing enzymes, including arylamine N-acetyltransferases (NATs). NAT genes are present in bacteria, archaea, protists and fungi. In lower taxa of fungi, NAT genes are found in chytridiomycetes. In Dikarya, NAT gen...

  12. Heterologous Expression of Toxins from Bacterial Toxin-Antitoxin Systems in Eukaryotic Cells: Strategies and Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chew Chieng Yeo


    Full Text Available Toxin-antitoxin (TA systems are found in nearly all prokaryotic genomes and usually consist of a pair of co-transcribed genes, one of which encodes a stable toxin and the other, its cognate labile antitoxin. Certain environmental and physiological cues trigger the degradation of the antitoxin, causing activation of the toxin, leading either to the death or stasis of the host cell. TA systems have a variety of functions in the bacterial cell, including acting as mediators of programmed cell death, the induction of a dormant state known as persistence and the stable maintenance of plasmids and other mobile genetic elements. Some bacterial TA systems are functional when expressed in eukaryotic cells and this has led to several innovative applications, which are the subject of this review. Here, we look at how bacterial TA systems have been utilized for the genetic manipulation of yeasts and other eukaryotes, for the containment of genetically modified organisms, and for the engineering of high expression eukaryotic cell lines. We also examine how TA systems have been adopted as an important tool in developmental biology research for the ablation of specific cells and the potential for utility of TA systems in antiviral and anticancer gene therapies.

  13. Heterologous Expression of Toxins from Bacterial Toxin-Antitoxin Systems in Eukaryotic Cells: Strategies and Applications. (United States)

    Yeo, Chew Chieng; Abu Bakar, Fauziah; Chan, Wai Ting; Espinosa, Manuel; Harikrishna, Jennifer Ann


    Toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are found in nearly all prokaryotic genomes and usually consist of a pair of co-transcribed genes, one of which encodes a stable toxin and the other, its cognate labile antitoxin. Certain environmental and physiological cues trigger the degradation of the antitoxin, causing activation of the toxin, leading either to the death or stasis of the host cell. TA systems have a variety of functions in the bacterial cell, including acting as mediators of programmed cell death, the induction of a dormant state known as persistence and the stable maintenance of plasmids and other mobile genetic elements. Some bacterial TA systems are functional when expressed in eukaryotic cells and this has led to several innovative applications, which are the subject of this review. Here, we look at how bacterial TA systems have been utilized for the genetic manipulation of yeasts and other eukaryotes, for the containment of genetically modified organisms, and for the engineering of high expression eukaryotic cell lines. We also examine how TA systems have been adopted as an important tool in developmental biology research for the ablation of specific cells and the potential for utility of TA systems in antiviral and anticancer gene therapies.

  14. Eukaryotic and archaeal TBP and TFB/TF(II)B follow different promoter DNA bending pathways. (United States)

    Gietl, Andreas; Holzmeister, Phil; Blombach, Fabian; Schulz, Sarah; von Voithenberg, Lena Voith; Lamb, Don C; Werner, Finn; Tinnefeld, Philip; Gr