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Sample records for evolutionary conserved genes

  1. Evolutionary conservation of regulatory elements in vertebrate HOX gene clusters

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    Santini, Simona; Boore, Jeffrey L.; Meyer, Axel

    2003-12-31

    Due to their high degree of conservation, comparisons of DNA sequences among evolutionarily distantly-related genomes permit to identify functional regions in noncoding DNA. Hox genes are optimal candidate sequences for comparative genome analyses, because they are extremely conserved in vertebrates and occur in clusters. We aligned (Pipmaker) the nucleotide sequences of HoxA clusters of tilapia, pufferfish, striped bass, zebrafish, horn shark, human and mouse (over 500 million years of evolutionary distance). We identified several highly conserved intergenic sequences, likely to be important in gene regulation. Only a few of these putative regulatory elements have been previously described as being involved in the regulation of Hox genes, while several others are new elements that might have regulatory functions. The majority of these newly identified putative regulatory elements contain short fragments that are almost completely conserved and are identical to known binding sites for regulatory proteins (Transfac). The conserved intergenic regions located between the most rostrally expressed genes in the developing embryo are longer and better retained through evolution. We document that presumed regulatory sequences are retained differentially in either A or A clusters resulting from a genome duplication in the fish lineage. This observation supports both the hypothesis that the conserved elements are involved in gene regulation and the Duplication-Deletion-Complementation model.

  2. Evolutionary Conservation in Genes Underlying Human Psychiatric Disorders

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    Lisa Michelle Ogawa

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Many psychiatric diseases observed in humans have tenuous or absent analogs in other species. Most notable among these are schizophrenia and autism. One hypothesis has posited that these diseases have arisen as a consequence of human brain evolution, for example, that the same processes that led to advances in cognition, language, and executive function also resulted in novel diseases in humans when dysfunctional. Here, the molecular evolution of genes associated with these and other psychiatric disorders are compared among species. Genes associated with psychiatric disorders are drawn from the literature and orthologous sequences are collected from eleven primate species (human, chimpanzee, bonobo, gorilla, orangutan, gibbon, macaque, baboon, marmoset, squirrel monkey, and galago and thirty one non-primate mammalian species. Evolutionary parameters, including dN/dS, are calculated for each gene and compared between disease classes and among species, focusing on humans and primates compared to other mammals and on large-brained taxa (cetaceans, rhinoceros, walrus, bear, and elephant compared to their small-brained sister species. Evidence of differential selection in primates supports the hypothesis that schizophrenia and autism are a cost of higher brain function. Through this work a better understanding of the molecular evolution of the human brain, the pathophysiology of disease, and the genetic basis of human psychiatric disease is gained.

  3. The gsdf gene locus harbors evolutionary conserved and clustered genes preferentially expressed in fish previtellogenic oocytes.

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    Gautier, Aude; Le Gac, Florence; Lareyre, Jean-Jacques

    2011-02-01

    The gonadal soma-derived factor (GSDF) belongs to the transforming growth factor-β superfamily and is conserved in teleostean fish species. Gsdf is specifically expressed in the gonads, and gene expression is restricted to the granulosa and Sertoli cells in trout and medaka. The gsdf gene expression is correlated to early testis differentiation in medaka and was shown to stimulate primordial germ cell and spermatogonia proliferation in trout. In the present study, we show that the gsdf gene localizes to a syntenic chromosomal fragment conserved among vertebrates although no gsdf-related gene is detected on the corresponding genomic region in tetrapods. We demonstrate using quantitative RT-PCR that most of the genes localized in the synteny are specifically expressed in medaka gonads. Gsdf is the only gene of the synteny with a much higher expression in the testis compared to the ovary. In contrast, gene expression pattern analysis of the gsdf surrounding genes (nup54, aff1, klhl8, sdad1, and ptpn13) indicates that these genes are preferentially expressed in the female gonads. The tissue distribution of these genes is highly similar in medaka and zebrafish, two teleostean species that have diverged more than 110 million years ago. The cellular localization of these genes was determined in medaka gonads using the whole-mount in situ hybridization technique. We confirm that gsdf gene expression is restricted to Sertoli and granulosa cells in contact with the premeiotic and meiotic cells. The nup54 gene is expressed in spermatocytes and previtellogenic oocytes. Transcripts corresponding to the ovary-specific genes (aff1, klhl8, and sdad1) are detected only in previtellogenic oocytes. No expression was detected in the gonocytes in 10 dpf embryos. In conclusion, we show that the gsdf gene localizes to a syntenic chromosomal fragment harboring evolutionary conserved genes in vertebrates. These genes are preferentially expressed in previtelloogenic oocytes, and thus, they

  4. Genes with stable DNA methylation levels show higher evolutionary conservation than genes with fluctuant DNA methylation levels.

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    Zhang, Ruijie; Lv, Wenhua; Luan, Meiwei; Zheng, Jiajia; Shi, Miao; Zhu, Hongjie; Li, Jin; Lv, Hongchao; Zhang, Mingming; Shang, Zhenwei; Duan, Lian; Jiang, Yongshuai

    2015-11-24

    Different human genes often exhibit different degrees of stability in their DNA methylation levels between tissues, samples or cell types. This may be related to the evolution of human genome. Thus, we compared the evolutionary conservation between two types of genes: genes with stable DNA methylation levels (SM genes) and genes with fluctuant DNA methylation levels (FM genes). For long-term evolutionary characteristics between species, we compared the percentage of the orthologous genes, evolutionary rate dn/ds and protein sequence identity. We found that the SM genes had greater percentages of the orthologous genes, lower dn/ds, and higher protein sequence identities in all the 21 species. These results indicated that the SM genes were more evolutionarily conserved than the FM genes. For short-term evolutionary characteristics among human populations, we compared the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) density, and the linkage disequilibrium (LD) degree in HapMap populations and 1000 genomes project populations. We observed that the SM genes had lower SNP densities, and higher degrees of LD in all the 11 HapMap populations and 13 1000 genomes project populations. These results mean that the SM genes had more stable chromosome genetic structures, and were more conserved than the FM genes.

  5. Evolutionary Conservation and Diversification of Rh Family Genes and Proteins

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Cheng-Han Huang; Jianbin Peng

    2005-01-01

    .... In the latter view, Rh and Amt are different biological gas channels. To reconstruct the phytogeny of the Rh family and study its coexistence with and relationship to Amt in depth, we analyzed 111 Rh genes and 260 Amt genes...

  6. Evolutionary conservation and network structure characterize genes of phenotypic relevance for mitosis in human.

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    Marek Ostaszewski

    Full Text Available The impact of gene silencing on cellular phenotypes is difficult to establish due to the complexity of interactions in the associated biological processes and pathways. A recent genome-wide RNA knock-down study both identified and phenotypically characterized a set of important genes for the cell cycle in HeLa cells. Here, we combine a molecular interaction network analysis, based on physical and functional protein interactions, in conjunction with evolutionary information, to elucidate the common biological and topological properties of these key genes. Our results show that these genes tend to be conserved with their corresponding protein interactions across several species and are key constituents of the evolutionary conserved molecular interaction network. Moreover, a group of bistable network motifs is found to be conserved within this network, which are likely to influence the network stability and therefore the robustness of cellular functioning. They form a cluster, which displays functional homogeneity and is significantly enriched in genes phenotypically relevant for mitosis. Additional results reveal a relationship between specific cellular processes and the phenotypic outcomes induced by gene silencing. This study introduces new ideas regarding the relationship between genotype and phenotype in the context of the cell cycle. We show that the analysis of molecular interaction networks can result in the identification of genes relevant to cellular processes, which is a promising avenue for future research.

  7. Identifying human disease genes through cross-species gene mapping of evolutionary conserved processes.

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    Martin Poot

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Understanding complex networks that modulate development in humans is hampered by genetic and phenotypic heterogeneity within and between populations. Here we present a method that exploits natural variation in highly diverse mouse genetic reference panels in which genetic and environmental factors can be tightly controlled. The aim of our study is to test a cross-species genetic mapping strategy, which compares data of gene mapping in human patients with functional data obtained by QTL mapping in recombinant inbred mouse strains in order to prioritize human disease candidate genes.We exploit evolutionary conservation of developmental phenotypes to discover gene variants that influence brain development in humans. We studied corpus callosum volume in a recombinant inbred mouse panel (C57BL/6J×DBA/2J, BXD strains using high-field strength MRI technology. We aligned mouse mapping results for this neuro-anatomical phenotype with genetic data from patients with abnormal corpus callosum (ACC development.From the 61 syndromes which involve an ACC, 51 human candidate genes have been identified. Through interval mapping, we identified a single significant QTL on mouse chromosome 7 for corpus callosum volume with a QTL peak located between 25.5 and 26.7 Mb. Comparing the genes in this mouse QTL region with those associated with human syndromes (involving ACC and those covered by copy number variations (CNV yielded a single overlap, namely HNRPU in humans and Hnrpul1 in mice. Further analysis of corpus callosum volume in BXD strains revealed that the corpus callosum was significantly larger in BXD mice with a B genotype at the Hnrpul1 locus than in BXD mice with a D genotype at Hnrpul1 (F = 22.48, p<9.87*10(-5.This approach that exploits highly diverse mouse strains provides an efficient and effective translational bridge to study the etiology of human developmental disorders, such as autism and schizophrenia.

  8. Patterns of evolutionary conservation of essential genes correlate with their compensability.

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    Tobias Bergmiller

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Essential genes code for fundamental cellular functions required for the viability of an organism. For this reason, essential genes are often highly conserved across organisms. However, this is not always the case: orthologues of genes that are essential in one organism are sometimes not essential in other organisms or are absent from their genomes. This suggests that, in the course of evolution, essential genes can be rendered nonessential. How can a gene become non-essential? Here we used genetic manipulation to deplete the products of 26 different essential genes in Escherichia coli. This depletion results in a lethal phenotype, which could often be rescued by the overexpression of a non-homologous, non-essential gene, most likely through replacement of the essential function. We also show that, in a smaller number of cases, the essential genes can be fully deleted from the genome, suggesting that complete functional replacement is possible. Finally, we show that essential genes whose function can be replaced in the laboratory are more likely to be non-essential or not present in other taxa. These results are consistent with the notion that patterns of evolutionary conservation of essential genes are influenced by their compensability-that is, by how easily they can be functionally replaced, for example through increased expression of other genes.

  9. Systematic analysis of head-to-head gene organization: evolutionary conservation and potential biological relevance.

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    Yuan-Yuan Li

    2006-07-01

    Full Text Available Several "head-to-head" (or "bidirectional" gene pairs have been studied in individual experiments, but genome-wide analysis of this gene organization, especially in terms of transcriptional correlation and functional association, is still insufficient. We conducted a systematic investigation of head-to-head gene organization focusing on structural features, evolutionary conservation, expression correlation and functional association. Of the present 1,262, 1,071, and 491 head-to-head pairs identified in human, mouse, and rat genomes, respectively, pairs with 1- to 400-base pair distance between transcription start sites form the majority (62.36%, 64.15%, and 55.19% for human, mouse, and rat,respectively of each dataset, and the largest group is always the one with a transcription start site distance of 101 to 200 base pairs. The phylogenetic analysis among Fugu, chicken, and human indicates a negative selection on the separation of head-to-head genes across vertebrate evolution, and thus the ancestral existence of this gene organization. The expression analysis shows that most of the human head-to-head genes are significantly correlated,and the correlation could be positive, negative, or alternative depending on the experimental conditions. Finally, head to-head genes statistically tend to perform similar functions, and gene pairs associated with the significant cofunctions seem to have stronger expression correlations. The findings indicate that the head-to-head gene organization is ancient and conserved, which subjects functionally related genes to correlated transcriptional regulation and thus provides an exquisite mechanism of transcriptional regulation based on gene organization. These results have significantly expanded the knowledge about head-to-head gene organization. Supplementary materials for this study are available at http://www.scbit.org/h2h.

  10. Using evolutionary conserved modules in gene networks as a strategy to leverage high throughput gene expression queries.

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    Jeanne M Serb

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Large-scale gene expression studies have not yielded the expected insight into genetic networks that control complex processes. These anticipated discoveries have been limited not by technology, but by a lack of effective strategies to investigate the data in a manageable and meaningful way. Previous work suggests that using a pre-determined seed-network of gene relationships to query large-scale expression datasets is an effective way to generate candidate genes for further study and network expansion or enrichment. Based on the evolutionary conservation of gene relationships, we test the hypothesis that a seed network derived from studies of retinal cell determination in the fly, Drosophila melanogaster, will be an effective way to identify novel candidate genes for their role in mouse retinal development. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Our results demonstrate that a number of gene relationships regulating retinal cell differentiation in the fly are identifiable as pairwise correlations between genes from developing mouse retina. In addition, we demonstrate that our extracted seed-network of correlated mouse genes is an effective tool for querying datasets and provides a context to generate hypotheses. Our query identified 46 genes correlated with our extracted seed-network members. Approximately 54% of these candidates had been previously linked to the developing brain and 33% had been previously linked to the developing retina. Five of six candidate genes investigated further were validated by experiments examining spatial and temporal protein expression in the developing retina. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We present an effective strategy for pursuing a systems biology approach that utilizes an evolutionary comparative framework between two model organisms, fly and mouse. Future implementation of this strategy will be useful to determine the extent of network conservation, not just gene conservation, between species and will

  11. Evolutionary conservation of essential and highly expressed genes in Pseudomonas aeruginosa

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    Scharfe Maren

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The constant increase in development and spread of bacterial resistance to antibiotics poses a serious threat to human health. New sequencing technologies are now on the horizon that will yield massive increases in our capacity for DNA sequencing and will revolutionize the drug discovery process. Since essential genes are promising novel antibiotic targets, the prediction of gene essentiality based on genomic information has become a major focus. Results In this study we demonstrate that pooled sequencing is applicable for the analysis of sequence variations of strain collections with more than 10 individual isolates. Pooled sequencing of 36 clinical Pseudomonas aeruginosa isolates revealed that essential and highly expressed proteins evolve at lower rates, whereas extracellular proteins evolve at higher rates. We furthermore refined the list of experimentally essential P. aeruginosa genes, and identified 980 genes that show no sequence variation at all. Among the conserved nonessential genes we found several that are involved in regulation, motility and virulence, indicating that they represent factors of evolutionary importance for the lifestyle of a successful environmental bacterium and opportunistic pathogen. Conclusion The detailed analysis of a comprehensive set of P. aeruginosa genomes in this study clearly disclosed detailed information of the genomic makeup and revealed a large set of highly conserved genes that play an important role for the lifestyle of this microorganism. Sequencing strain collections enables for a detailed and extensive identification of sequence variations as potential bacterial adaptation processes, e.g., during the development of antibiotic resistance in the clinical setting and thus may be the basis to uncover putative targets for novel treatment strategies.

  12. Evolutionary history of the recruitment of conserved developmental genes in association to the formation and diversification of a novel trait

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    Shirai Leila T

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The origin and modification of novel traits are important aspects of biological diversification. Studies combining concepts and approaches of developmental genetics and evolutionary biology have uncovered many examples of the recruitment, or co-option, of genes conserved across lineages for the formation of novel, lineage-restricted traits. However, little is known about the evolutionary history of the recruitment of those genes, and of the relationship between them -for example, whether the co-option involves whole or parts of existing networks, or whether it occurs by redeployment of individual genes with de novo rewiring. We use a model novel trait, color pattern elements on butterfly wings called eyespots, to explore these questions. Eyespots have greatly diversified under natural and sexual selection, and their formation involves genetic circuitries shared across insects. Results We investigated the evolutionary history of the recruitment and co-recruitment of four conserved transcription regulators to the larval wing disc region where circular pattern elements develop. The co-localization of Antennapedia, Notch, Distal-less, and Spalt with presumptive (eyespot organizers was examined in 13 butterfly species, providing the largest comparative dataset available for the system. We found variation between families, between subfamilies, and between tribes. Phylogenetic reconstructions by parsimony and maximum likelihood methods revealed an unambiguous evolutionary history only for Antennapedia, with a resolved single origin of eyespot-associated expression, and many homoplastic events for Notch, Distal-less, and Spalt. The flexibility in the (co-recruitment of the targeted genes includes cases where different gene combinations are associated with morphologically similar eyespots, as well as cases where identical protein combinations are associated with very different phenotypes. Conclusions The evolutionary history of gene

  13. Metazoan Remaining Genes for Essential Amino Acid Biosynthesis: Sequence Conservation and Evolutionary Analyses

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    Igor R. Costa

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Essential amino acids (EAA consist of a group of nine amino acids that animals are unable to synthesize via de novo pathways. Recently, it has been found that most metazoans lack the same set of enzymes responsible for the de novo EAA biosynthesis. Here we investigate the sequence conservation and evolution of all the metazoan remaining genes for EAA pathways. Initially, the set of all 49 enzymes responsible for the EAA de novo biosynthesis in yeast was retrieved. These enzymes were used as BLAST queries to search for similar sequences in a database containing 10 complete metazoan genomes. Eight enzymes typically attributed to EAA pathways were found to be ubiquitous in metazoan genomes, suggesting a conserved functional role. In this study, we address the question of how these genes evolved after losing their pathway partners. To do this, we compared metazoan genes with their fungal and plant orthologs. Using phylogenetic analysis with maximum likelihood, we found that acetolactate synthase (ALS and betaine-homocysteine S-methyltransferase (BHMT diverged from the expected Tree of Life (ToL relationships. High sequence conservation in the paraphyletic group Plant-Fungi was identified for these two genes using a newly developed Python algorithm. Selective pressure analysis of ALS and BHMT protein sequences showed higher non-synonymous mutation ratios in comparisons between metazoans/fungi and metazoans/plants, supporting the hypothesis that these two genes have undergone non-ToL evolution in animals.

  14. Patterns of evolutionary conservation of ascorbic acid-related genes following whole-genome triplication in Brassica rapa.

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    Duan, Weike; Song, Xiaoming; Liu, Tongkun; Huang, Zhinan; Ren, Jun; Hou, Xilin; Du, Jianchang; Li, Ying

    2014-12-31

    Ascorbic acid (AsA) is an important antioxidant in plants and an essential vitamin for humans. Extending the study of AsA-related genes from Arabidopsis thaliana to Brassica rapa could shed light on the evolution of AsA in plants and inform crop breeding. In this study, we conducted whole-genome annotation, molecular-evolution and gene-expression analyses of all known AsA-related genes in B. rapa. The nucleobase-ascorbate transporter (NAT) gene family and AsA l-galactose pathway genes were also compared among plant species. Four important insights gained are that: 1) 102 AsA-related gene were identified in B. rapa and they mainly diverged 12-18 Ma accompanied by the Brassica-specific genome triplication event; 2) during their evolution, these AsA-related genes were preferentially retained, consistent with the gene dosage hypothesis; 3) the putative proteins were highly conserved, but their expression patterns varied; and 4) although the number of AsA-related genes is higher in B. rapa than in A. thaliana, the AsA contents and the numbers of expressed genes in leaves of both species are similar, the genes that are not generally expressed may serve as substitutes during emergencies. In summary, this study provides genome-wide insights into evolutionary history and mechanisms of AsA-related genes following whole-genome triplication in B. rapa. © The Author(s) 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  15. Evolutionary analysis of two complement C4 genes: Ancient duplication and conservation during jawed vertebrate evolution.

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    Nonaka, Mayumi I; Terado, Tokio; Kimura, Hiroshi; Nonaka, Masaru

    2017-03-01

    The complement C4 is a thioester-containing protein, and a histidine (H) residue catalyzes the cleavage of the thioester to allow covalent binding to carbohydrates on target cells. Some mammalian and teleost species possess an additional isotype where the catalytic H is replaced by an aspartic acid (D), which binds preferentially to proteins. We found the two C4 isotypes in many other jawed vertebrates, including sharks and birds/reptiles. Phylogenetic analysis suggested that C4 gene duplication occurred in the early days of the jawed vertebrate evolution. The D-type C4 of bony fish except for mammals formed a cluster, termed D-lineage. The D-lineage genes were located in a syntenic region outside MHC, and evolved conservatively. Mammals lost the D-lineage before speciation, but D-type C4 was regenerated by recent gene duplication in some mammalian species or groups. Dual C4 molecules with different substrate specificities would have contributed to development of the antibody-dependent classical pathway. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Evolutionary conservation of an atypical glucocorticoid-responsive element in the human tyrosine hydroxylase gene.

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    Sheela Rani, C S; Soto-Pina, Alexandra; Iacovitti, Lorraine; Strong, Randy

    2013-07-01

    The human tyrosine hydroxylase (hTH) gene has a 42 bp evolutionarily conserved region designated (CR) II at -7.24 kb, which bears 93% homology to the region we earlier identified as containing the glucocorticoid response element, a 7 bp activator protein-1 (AP-1)-like motif in the rat TH gene. We cloned this hTH-CRII region upstream of minimal basal hTH promoter in luciferase (Luc) reporter vector, and tested glucocorticoid responsiveness in human cell lines. Dexamethasone (Dex) stimulated Luc activity of hTH-CRII in HeLa cells, while mifepristone, a glucocorticoid receptor (GR) antagonist, prevented Dex stimulation. Deletion of the 7 bp 5'-TGACTAA at -7243 bp completely abolished the Dex-stimulated Luc activity of hTH-CRII construct. The AP-1 agonist, tetradeconoyl-12,13-phorbol acetate (TPA), also stimulated hTH promoter activity, and Dex and TPA together further accentuated this response. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assays revealed the presence of both GR and AP-1 proteins, especially Jun family members, at this hTH promoter site. Dex did not stimulate hTH promoter activity in a catecholaminergic cell line, which had low endogenous GR levels, but did activate the response when GR was expressed exogenously. Thus, our studies have clearly identified a glucocorticoid-responsive element in a 7 bp AP-1-like motif in the promoter region at -7.24 kb of the human TH gene. © 2013 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  17. An evolutionary conserved region (ECR in the human dopamine receptor D4 gene supports reporter gene expression in primary cultures derived from the rat cortex

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    Haddley Kate

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Detecting functional variants contributing to diversity of behaviour is crucial for dissecting genetics of complex behaviours. At a molecular level, characterisation of variation in exons has been studied as they are easily identified in the current genome annotation although the functional consequences are less well understood; however, it has been difficult to prioritise regions of non-coding DNA in which genetic variation could also have significant functional consequences. Comparison of multiple vertebrate genomes has allowed the identification of non-coding evolutionary conserved regions (ECRs, in which the degree of conservation can be comparable with exonic regions suggesting functional significance. Results We identified ECRs at the dopamine receptor D4 gene locus, an important gene for human behaviours. The most conserved non-coding ECR (D4ECR1 supported high reporter gene expression in primary cultures derived from neonate rat frontal cortex. Computer aided analysis of the sequence of the D4ECR1 indicated the potential transcription factors that could modulate its function. D4ECR1 contained multiple consensus sequences for binding the transcription factor Sp1, a factor previously implicated in DRD4 expression. Co-transfection experiments demonstrated that overexpression of Sp1 significantly decreased the activity of the D4ECR1 in vitro. Conclusion Bioinformatic analysis complemented by functional analysis of the DRD4 gene locus has identified a a strong enhancer that functions in neurons and b a transcription factor that may modulate the function of that enhancer.

  18. Evolutionary conservation of candidate osmoregulation genes in plant phloem sap-feeding insects.

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    Jing, X; White, T A; Luan, J; Jiao, C; Fei, Z; Douglas, A E

    2016-06-01

    The high osmotic pressure generated by sugars in plant phloem sap is reduced in phloem-feeding aphids by sugar transformations and facilitated water flux in the gut. The genes mediating these osmoregulatory functions have been identified and validated empirically in the pea aphid Acyrthosiphon pisum: sucrase 1 (SUC1), a sucrase in glycoside hydrolase family 13 (GH13), and aquaporin 1 (AQP1), a member of the Drosophila integral protein (DRIP) family of aquaporins. Here, we describe molecular analysis of GH13 and AQP genes in phloem-feeding representatives of the four phloem-feeding groups: aphids (Myzus persicae), coccids (Planococcus citri), psyllids (Diaphorina citri, Bactericera cockerelli) and whiteflies (Bemisia tabaci MEAM1 and MED). A single candidate GH13-SUC gene and DRIP-AQP gene were identified in the genome/transcriptome of most insects tested by the criteria of sequence motif and gene expression in the gut. Exceptionally, the psyllid Ba. cockerelli transcriptome included a gut-expressed Pyrocoelia rufa integral protein (PRIP)-AQP, but has no DRIP-AQP transcripts, suggesting that PRIP-AQP is recruited for osmoregulatory function in this insect. This study indicates that phylogenetically related SUC and AQP genes may generally mediate osmoregulatory functions in these diverse phloem-feeding insects, and provides candidate genes for empirical validation and development as targets for osmotic disruption of pest species. © 2016 The Authors. Insect Molecular Biology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of The Royal Entomological Society.

  19. Expression profiling of rainbow trout testis development identifies evolutionary conserved genes involved in spermatogenesis

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    Esquerré Diane

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Spermatogenesis is a late developmental process that involves a coordinated expression program in germ cells and a permanent communication between the testicular somatic cells and the germ-line. Current knowledge regarding molecular factors driving male germ cell proliferation and differentiation in vertebrates is still limited and mainly based on existing data from rodents and human. Fish with a marked reproductive cycle and a germ cell development in synchronous cysts have proven to be choice models to study precise stages of the spermatogenetic development and the germ cell-somatic cell communication network. In this study we used 9K cDNA microarrays to investigate the expression profiles underlying testis maturation during the male reproductive cycle of the trout, Oncorhynchus mykiss. Results Using total testis samples at various developmental stages and isolated spermatogonia, spermatocytes and spermatids, 3379 differentially expressed trout cDNAs were identified and their gene activation or repression patterns throughout the reproductive cycle were reported. We also performed a tissue-profiling analysis and highlighted many genes for which expression signals were restricted to the testes or gonads from both sexes. The search for orthologous genes in genome-sequenced fish species and the use of their mammalian orthologs allowed us to provide accurate annotations for trout cDNAs. The analysis of the GeneOntology terms therefore validated and broadened our interpretation of expression clusters by highlighting enriched functions that are consistent with known sequential events during male gametogenesis. Furthermore, we compared expression profiles of trout and mouse orthologs and identified a complement of genes for which expression during spermatogenesis was maintained throughout evolution. Conclusion A comprehensive study of gene expression and associated functions during testis maturation and germ cell differentiation in

  20. cDNA sequence, genomic organization, and evolutionary conservation of a novel gene from the WAGR region

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    Schwartz, F.; Eisenman, R.; Knoll, J.; Bruns, G. [Children`s Hospital and Department of Pediatrics, Boston, MA (United States)

    1995-09-20

    A new gene (239FB) with predominant and differential expression in fetal brain has recently been isolated from a chromosome 11p13-p14 boundary area near FSHB. The corresponding mRNA has an open reading frame of 294 amino acids, a 3` untranslated region of 1247 nucleotides, and a highly GC-rich 5` untranslated region. The coding and 3` UT sequence is specified by 6 exons within nearly 87 kb of isolated genomic locus. The 5` end region of the transcript maps adjacent to the only genomically defined CpG island in a chromosomal subregion that may be associated with part of the mental retardation of some WAGR (Wilms tumor, aniridia, genitourinary anomalies, and mental retardation) syndrome patients. In addition to nucleotide and amino acid similarity to an EST from a normalized infant brain cDNA library, the predicted protein has extensive similarity to Caenorhbditis elegans polypeptides of, as yet, unknown function. The 239FB locus is, therefore, likely part of a family of genes with two members expressed in human brain. The extensive conservation of the predicted protein suggests a fundamental function of the gene product and will enable evaluation of the role of the 239FB gene in neurogenesis in model organisms. 48 refs., 4 figs., 1 tab.

  1. Molecular Characterization and Expression Profiling of Brachypodium distachyon L. Cystatin Genes Reveal High Evolutionary Conservation and Functional Divergence in Response to Abiotic Stress

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    Saminathan Subburaj

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Cystatin is a class of proteins mainly involved in cysteine protease inhibition and plant growth and development, as well as tolerance under various abiotic stresses. In this study, we performed the first comprehensive analysis of the molecular characterization and expression profiling in response to various abiotic stresses of the cystatin gene family in Brachypodium distachyon, a novel model plant for Triticum species with huge genomes. Comprehensive searches of the Brachypodium genome database identified 25 B. distachyon cystatin (BdC genes that are distributed unevenly on chromosomes; of these, nine and two were involved in tandem and segmental duplication events, respectively. All BdC genes had similar exon/intron structural organization, with three conserved motifs similar to those from other plant species, indicating their high evolutionary conservation. Expression profiling of 10 typical BdC genes revealed ubiquitous expression in different organs at varying expression levels. BdC gene expression in seedling leaves was particularly highly induced by various abiotic stresses, including the plant hormone abscisic acid and various environmental cues (cold, H2O2, CdCl2, salt, and drought. Interestingly, most BdC genes were significantly upregulated under multiple abiotic stresses, including BdC15 under all stresses, BdC7-2 and BdC10 under five stresses, and BdC7-1, BdC2-1, BdC14, and BdC12 under four stresses. The putative metabolic pathways of cytastin genes in response to various abiotic stresses mainly involve the aberrant protein degradation pathway and reactive oxygen species (ROS-triggered programmed cell death signaling pathways. These observations provide a better understanding of the structural and functional characteristics of the plant cystatin gene family.

  2. Targeted gene flow for conservation.

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    Kelly, Ella; Phillips, Ben L

    2016-04-01

    Anthropogenic threats often impose strong selection on affected populations, causing rapid evolutionary responses. Unfortunately, these adaptive responses are rarely harnessed for conservation. We suggest that conservation managers pay close attention to adaptive processes and geographic variation, with an eye to using them for conservation goals. Translocating pre-adapted individuals into recipient populations is currently considered a potentially important management tool in the face of climate change. Targeted gene flow, which involves moving individuals with favorable traits to areas where these traits would have a conservation benefit, could have a much broader application in conservation. Across a species' range there may be long-standing geographic variation in traits or variation may have rapidly developed in response to a threatening process. Targeted gene flow could be used to promote natural resistance to threats to increase species resilience. We suggest that targeted gene flow is a currently underappreciated strategy in conservation that has applications ranging from the management of invasive species and their impacts to controlling the impact and virulence of pathogens. © 2015 Society for Conservation Biology.

  3. Evolutionary conservation of protein vibrational dynamics.

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    Maguid, Sandra; Fernandez-Alberti, Sebastian; Echave, Julian

    2008-10-01

    The aim of the present work is to study the evolutionary divergence of vibrational protein dynamics. To this end, we used the Gaussian Network Model to perform a systematic analysis of normal mode conservation on a large dataset of proteins classified into homologous sets of family pairs and superfamily pairs. We found that the lowest most collective normal modes are the most conserved ones. More precisely, there is, on average, a linear correlation between normal mode conservation and mode collectivity. These results imply that the previously observed conservation of backbone flexibility (B-factor) profiles is due to the conservation of the most collective modes, which contribute the most to such profiles. We discuss the possible roles of normal mode robustness and natural selection in the determination of the observed behavior. Finally, we draw some practical implications for dynamics-based protein alignment and classification and discuss possible caveats of the present approach.

  4. Strategies for measuring evolutionary conservation of RNA secondary structures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hofacker Ivo L

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Evolutionary conservation of RNA secondary structure is a typical feature of many functional non-coding RNAs. Since almost all of the available methods used for prediction and annotation of non-coding RNA genes rely on this evolutionary signature, accurate measures for structural conservation are essential. Results We systematically assessed the ability of various measures to detect conserved RNA structures in multiple sequence alignments. We tested three existing and eight novel strategies that are based on metrics of folding energies, metrics of single optimal structure predictions, and metrics of structure ensembles. We find that the folding energy based SCI score used in the RNAz program and a simple base-pair distance metric are by far the most accurate. The use of more complex metrics like for example tree editing does not improve performance. A variant of the SCI performed particularly well on highly conserved alignments and is thus a viable alternative when only little evolutionary information is available. Surprisingly, ensemble based methods that, in principle, could benefit from the additional information contained in sub-optimal structures, perform particularly poorly. As a general trend, we observed that methods that include a consensus structure prediction outperformed equivalent methods that only consider pairwise comparisons. Conclusion Structural conservation can be measured accurately with relatively simple and intuitive metrics. They have the potential to form the basis of future RNA gene finders, that face new challenges like finding lineage specific structures or detecting mis-aligned sequences.

  5. Unusual evolutionary conservation and frequent DNA segment exchange in class I genes of the major histocompatibility complex.

    OpenAIRE

    Hayashida, H; Miyata, T.

    1983-01-01

    From comparisons of homologous DNA sequences for many different genes, it was shown that the silent positions of protein-encoding regions and introns evolve at high and remarkably similar rates for different genes. In addition, both silent positions and introns behave like clocks; they accumulated base substitutions at approximately constant rates with respect to geological time. The rates of evolution were estimated to be 5.5 X 10(-9), 3.7 X 10(-9), and 5.3 X 10(-9) per site per year for sil...

  6. Evolutionary conservation of protein backbone flexibility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maguid, Sandra; Fernández-Alberti, Sebastián; Parisi, Gustavo; Echave, Julián

    2006-10-01

    Internal protein dynamics is essential for biological function. During evolution, protein divergence is functionally constrained: properties more relevant for function vary more slowly than less important properties. Thus, if protein dynamics is relevant for function, it should be evolutionary conserved. In contrast with the well-studied evolution of protein structure, the evolutionary divergence of protein dynamics has not been addressed systematically before, apart from a few case studies. X-Ray diffraction analysis gives information not only on protein structure but also on B-factors, which characterize the flexibility that results from protein dynamics. Here we study the evolutionary divergence of protein backbone dynamics by comparing the C(alpha) flexibility (B-factor) profiles for a large dataset of homologous proteins classified into families and superfamilies. We show that C(alpha) flexibility profiles diverge slowly, so that they are conserved at family and superfamily levels, even for pairs of proteins with nonsignificant sequence similarity. We also analyze and discuss the correlations among the divergences of flexibility, sequence, and structure.

  7. Special Issue: Evolutionary perspectives on salmonid conservation and management

    OpenAIRE

    Waples, Robin S; Hendry, Andrew P

    2008-01-01

    This special issue of Evolutionary Applications comprises 15 papers that illustrate how evolutionary principles can inform the conservation and management of salmonid fishes. Several papers address the past evolutionary history of salmonids to gain insights into their likely plastic and genetic responses to future environmental change. The remaining papers consider potential evolutionary responses to climate warming, biological invasions, artificial propagation, habitat alteration, and harves...

  8. Late replication domains are evolutionary conserved in the Drosophila genome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natalya G Andreyenkova

    Full Text Available Drosophila chromosomes are organized into distinct domains differing in their predominant chromatin composition, replication timing and evolutionary conservation. We show on a genome-wide level that genes whose order has remained unaltered across 9 Drosophila species display late replication timing and frequently map to the regions of repressive chromatin. This observation is consistent with the existence of extensive domains of repressive chromatin that replicate extremely late and have conserved gene order in the Drosophila genome. We suggest that such repressive chromatin domains correspond to a handful of regions that complete replication at the very end of S phase. We further demonstrate that the order of genes in these regions is rarely altered in evolution. Substantial proportion of such regions significantly coincide with large synteny blocks. This indicates that there are evolutionary mechanisms maintaining the integrity of these late-replicating chromatin domains. The synteny blocks corresponding to the extremely late-replicating regions in the D. melanogaster genome consistently display two-fold lower gene density across different Drosophila species.

  9. A novel bioinformatics pipeline to discover genes related to arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis based on their evolutionary conservation pattern among higher plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Favre, Patrick; Bapaume, Laure; Bossolini, Eligio; Delorenzi, Mauro; Falquet, Laurent; Reinhardt, Didier

    2014-12-03

    Genes involved in arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) symbiosis have been identified primarily by mutant screens, followed by identification of the mutated genes (forward genetics). In addition, a number of AM-related genes has been identified by their AM-related expression patterns, and their function has subsequently been elucidated by knock-down or knock-out approaches (reverse genetics). However, genes that are members of functionally redundant gene families, or genes that have a vital function and therefore result in lethal mutant phenotypes, are difficult to identify. If such genes are constitutively expressed and therefore escape differential expression analyses, they remain elusive. The goal of this study was to systematically search for AM-related genes with a bioinformatics strategy that is insensitive to these problems. The central element of our approach is based on the fact that many AM-related genes are conserved only among AM-competent species. Our approach involves genome-wide comparisons at the proteome level of AM-competent host species with non-mycorrhizal species. Using a clustering method we first established orthologous/paralogous relationships and subsequently identified protein clusters that contain members only of the AM-competent species. Proteins of these clusters were then analyzed in an extended set of 16 plant species and ranked based on their relatedness among AM-competent monocot and dicot species, relative to non-mycorrhizal species. In addition, we combined the information on the protein-coding sequence with gene expression data and with promoter analysis. As a result we present a list of yet uncharacterized proteins that show a strongly AM-related pattern of sequence conservation, indicating that the respective genes may have been under selection for a function in AM. Among the top candidates are three genes that encode a small family of similar receptor-like kinases that are related to the S-locus receptor kinases involved in sporophytic

  10. Evolutionary discrimination of mammalian conserved non-genic sequences (CNGs)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dermitzakis, ET; Reymond, A; Scamuffa, N; Ucla, C; Kirkness, E; Rossier, C; Antonarakis, SE

    2003-01-01

    Analysis of the human and mouse genomes identified an abundance of conserved non-genic sequences (CNGs). The significance and evolutionary depth of their conservation remain unanswered. We have quantified levels and patterns of conservation of 191 CNGs of human chromosome 21 in 14 mammalian species.

  11. The Jumonji gene family in Crassostrea gigas suggests evolutionary conservation of Jmj-C histone demethylases orthologues in the oyster gametogenesis and development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fellous, Alexandre; Favrel, Pascal; Guo, Ximing; Riviere, Guillaume

    2014-03-15

    Jumonji (Jmj) proteins are histone demethylases, which control the identity of stem cells. Jmj genes were characterized from plants to mammals where they have been implicated in the epigenetic regulation of development. Despite the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas representing one of the most important aquaculture resources worldwide, the molecular mechanisms governing the embryogenesis and reproduction of this lophotrochozoan species remain poorly understood. However, annotations in the C. gigas EST library suggested the presence of putative Jumonji genes, raising the question of the conservation of this family of histone demethylases in the oyster. Using Primer walking, 5'-RACE PCR and in silico analyses, we characterized nine Jumonji orthologues in the oyster, called Cg-Jmj, bearing conserved domains critical for putative histone demethylase activity. Phylogenic analyses revealed that oyster Jumonji cluster into two distinct groups: 'single-domain Jmj' and 'multi-domain Jmj', and define 8 subgroups corresponding to each cognate orthologues in metazoans. RT-qPCR investigations showed specific regulations of Cg-Jmj mRNAs during the early development and along the reproduction cycle. Furthermore, in situ and in toto hybridizations indicate that oyster Jumonji genes are transcribed mostly within the gonad in adult oysters whereas they display a ubiquitous expression during embryonic and larval development. Our study demonstrates the presence of nine Jumonji orthologues in the oyster C. gigas. Their domain conservation and their expression profile suggest an implication during reproduction and development, questioning about the epigenetic regulation by histone methylation in lophotrochozoans. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Evolutionary Conservation of ABA Signaling for Stomatal Closure1[OPEN

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Yuqing; Dai, Fei; Franks, Peter J.; Nevo, Eviatar; Soltis, Douglas E.; Soltis, Pamela S.; Xue, Dawei; Zhang, Guoping; Pogson, Barry J.

    2017-01-01

    Abscisic acid (ABA)-driven stomatal regulation reportedly evolved after the divergence of ferns, during the early evolution of seed plants approximately 360 million years ago. This hypothesis is based on the observation that the stomata of certain fern species are unresponsive to ABA, but exhibit passive hydraulic control. However, ABA-induced stomatal closure was detected in some mosses and lycophytes. Here, we observed that a number of ABA signaling and membrane transporter protein families diversified over the evolutionary history of land plants. The aquatic ferns Azolla filiculoides and Salvinia cucullata have representatives of 23 families of proteins orthologous to those of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) and all other land plant species studied. Phylogenetic analysis of the key ABA signaling proteins indicates an evolutionarily conserved stomatal response to ABA. Moreover, comparative transcriptomic analysis has identified a suite of ABA-responsive genes that differentially expressed in a terrestrial fern species, Polystichum proliferum. These genes encode proteins associated with ABA biosynthesis, transport, reception, transcription, signaling, and ion and sugar transport, which fit the general ABA signaling pathway constructed from Arabidopsis and Hordeum vulgare. The retention of these key ABA-responsive genes could have had a profound effect on the adaptation of ferns to dry conditions. Furthermore, stomatal assays have shown the primary evidence for ABA-induced closure of stomata in two terrestrial fern species P. proliferum and Nephrolepis exaltata. In summary, we report, to our knowledge, new molecular and physiological evidence for the presence of active stomatal control in ferns. PMID:28232585

  13. Global distribution and conservation of evolutionary distinctness in birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jetz, Walter; Thomas, Gavin H; Joy, Jeffrey B; Redding, David W; Hartmann, Klaas; Mooers, Arne O

    2014-05-05

    Integrated, efficient, and global prioritization approaches are necessary to manage the ongoing loss of species and their associated function. "Evolutionary distinctness" measures a species' contribution to the total evolutionary history of its clade and is expected to capture uniquely divergent genomes and functions. Here we demonstrate how such a metric identifies species and regions of particular value for safeguarding evolutionary diversity. Among the world's 9,993 recognized bird species, evolutionary distinctness is very heterogeneously distributed on the phylogenetic tree and varies little with range size or threat level. Species representing the most evolutionary history over the smallest area (those with greatest "evolutionary distinctness rarity") as well as some of the most imperiled distinct species are often concentrated outside the species-rich regions and countries, suggesting they may not be well captured by current conservation planning. We perform global cross-species and spatial analyses and generate minimum conservation sets to assess the benefits of the presented species-level metrics. We find that prioritizing imperiled species by their evolutionary distinctness and geographic rarity is a surprisingly effective and spatially economical way to maintain the total evolutionary information encompassing the world's birds. We identify potential conservation gaps in relation to the existing reserve network that in particular highlight islands as effective priority areas. The presented distinctness metrics are effective yet easily communicable and versatile tools to assist objective global conservation decision making. Given that most species will remain ecologically understudied, combining growing phylogenetic and spatial data may be an efficient way to retain vital aspects of biodiversity. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. The importance of an evolutionary perspective in conservation policy planning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moritz, Craig C; Potter, Sally

    2013-12-01

    Prioritization of taxa for conservation must rest on a foundation of correctly identified species boundaries, enhanced by an understanding of evolutionary history and phylogenetic relationships. Therefore, we can incorporate both evolutionary and ecological processes into efforts to sustain biodiversity. In this issue of Molecular Ecology, Malaney & Cook (2013) highlight the critical value of an evolutionary biogeographical approach, combining multilocus phylogeography with climatic niche modelling to infer phylogenetically weighted conservation priorities for evolutionary lineages of jumping mice across North America. Remarkably, they find that the Preble's meadow jumping mouse (Zapus hudsonius preblei), long debated as a threatened taxon, in fact represents the southern terminus of a relatively uniform lineage that expanded well into Alaska during the Holocene. By contrast, some other relictual and phylogenetically divergent taxa of jumping mice likely warrant greater conservation priority. This study highlights the value of integrative approaches that place current taxonomy in a broader evolutionary context to identify taxa for conservation assessment, but also highlights the challenges in maintaining potential for adaptive responses to environmental change. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Evolutionary conservation and changes in insect TRP channels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tominaga Makoto

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background TRP (Transient Receptor Potential channels respond to diverse stimuli and thus function as the primary integrators of varied sensory information. They are also activated by various compounds and secondary messengers to mediate cell-cell interactions as well as to detect changes in the local environment. Their physiological roles have been primarily characterized only in mice and fruit flies, and evolutionary studies are limited. To understand the evolution of insect TRP channels and the mechanisms of integrating sensory inputs in insects, we have identified and compared TRP channel genes in Drosophila melanogaster, Bombyx mori, Tribolium castaneum, Apis mellifera, Nasonia vitripennis, and Pediculus humanus genomes as part of genome sequencing efforts. Results All the insects examined have 2 TRPV, 1 TRPN, 1 TRPM, 3 TRPC, and 1 TRPML subfamily members, demonstrating that these channels have the ancient origins in insects. The common pattern also suggests that the mechanisms for detecting mechanical and visual stimuli and maintaining lysosomal functions may be evolutionarily well conserved in insects. However, a TRPP channel, the most ancient TRP channel, is missing in B. mori, A. mellifera, and N. vitripennis. Although P. humanus and D. melanogaster contain 4 TRPA subfamily members, the other insects have 5 TRPA subfamily members. T. castaneum, A. mellifera, and N. vitripennis contain TRPA5 channels, which have been specifically retained or gained in Coleoptera and Hymenoptera. Furthermore, TRPA1, which functions for thermotaxis in Drosophila, is missing in A. mellifera and N. vitripennis; however, they have other Hymenoptera-specific TRPA channels (AmHsTRPA and NvHsTRPA. NvHsTRPA expressed in HEK293 cells is activated by temperature increase, demonstrating that HsTRPAs function as novel thermal sensors in Hymenoptera. Conclusion The total number of insect TRP family members is 13-14, approximately half that of mammalian TRP

  16. Phylogenetic detection of conserved gene clusters in microbial genomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anton Brian P

    2005-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Microbial genomes contain an abundance of genes with conserved proximity forming clusters on the chromosome. However, the conservation can be a result of many factors such as vertical inheritance, or functional selection. Thus, identification of conserved gene clusters that are under functional selection provides an effective channel for gene annotation, microarray screening, and pathway reconstruction. The problem of devising a robust method to identify these conserved gene clusters and to evaluate the significance of the conservation in multiple genomes has a number of implications for comparative, evolutionary and functional genomics as well as synthetic biology. Results In this paper we describe a new method for detecting conserved gene clusters that incorporates the information captured by a genome phylogenetic tree. We show that our method can overcome the common problem of overestimation of significance due to the bias in the genome database and thereby achieve better accuracy when detecting functionally connected gene clusters. Our results can be accessed at database GeneChords http://genomics10.bu.edu/GeneChords. Conclusion The methodology described in this paper gives a scalable framework for discovering conserved gene clusters in microbial genomes. It serves as a platform for many other functional genomic analyses in microorganisms, such as operon prediction, regulatory site prediction, functional annotation of genes, evolutionary origin and development of gene clusters.

  17. Phylogenetic detection of conserved gene clusters in microbial genomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Yu; Anton, Brian P; Roberts, Richard J; Kasif, Simon

    2005-10-03

    Microbial genomes contain an abundance of genes with conserved proximity forming clusters on the chromosome. However, the conservation can be a result of many factors such as vertical inheritance, or functional selection. Thus, identification of conserved gene clusters that are under functional selection provides an effective channel for gene annotation, microarray screening, and pathway reconstruction. The problem of devising a robust method to identify these conserved gene clusters and to evaluate the significance of the conservation in multiple genomes has a number of implications for comparative, evolutionary and functional genomics as well as synthetic biology. In this paper we describe a new method for detecting conserved gene clusters that incorporates the information captured by a genome phylogenetic tree. We show that our method can overcome the common problem of overestimation of significance due to the bias in the genome database and thereby achieve better accuracy when detecting functionally connected gene clusters. Our results can be accessed at database GeneChords http://genomics10.bu.edu/GeneChords. The methodology described in this paper gives a scalable framework for discovering conserved gene clusters in microbial genomes. It serves as a platform for many other functional genomic analyses in microorganisms, such as operon prediction, regulatory site prediction, functional annotation of genes, evolutionary origin and development of gene clusters.

  18. The Roles and Evolutionary Patterns of Intronless Genes in Deuterostomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ming Zou

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Genes without introns are a characteristic feature of prokaryotes, but there are still a number of intronless genes in eukaryotes. To study these eukaryotic genes that have prokaryotic architecture could help to understand the evolutionary patterns of related genes and genomes. Our analyses revealed a number of intronless genes that reside in 6 deuterostomes (sea urchin, sea squirt, zebrafish, chicken, platypus, and human. We also determined the conservation for each intronless gene in archaea, bacteria, fungi, plants, metazoans, and other eukaryotes. Proportions of intronless genes that are inherited from the common ancestor of archaea, bacteria, and eukaryotes in these species were consistent with their phylogenetic positions, with more proportions of ancient intronless genes residing in more primitive species. In these species, intronless genes belong to different cellular roles and gene ontology (GO categories, and some of these functions are very basic. Part of intronless genes is derived from other intronless genes or multiexon genes in each species. In conclusion, we showed that a varying number and proportion of intronless genes reside in these 6 deuterostomes, and some of them function importantly. These genes are good candidates for subsequent functional and evolutionary analyses specifically.

  19. Conservation and gene banking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plant conservation has several objectives the main ones include safeguarding our food supply, preserving crop wild relatives for breeding and selection of new cultivars, providing material for industrial and pharmaceutical uses and preserving the beauty and diversity of our flora for generations to ...

  20. Remarkable evolutionary conservation of SOX14 orthologues

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    cluded SOX14/Sox14 genes of human (Homo sapiens), chim- panzee (Pan troglodytes), macaca (Macaca mulatta), dog. (Canis familiaris), horse (Equus cabalus), mouse (Mus mus- culus), opposum (Monodelphis domestica), platypus (Or- nithorinchus anatinus), chicken (Gallus gallus), frog (Xeno- pus tropicalis), zebrafish ...

  1. Evolutionary Conservation of ABA Signaling for Stomatal Closure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Shengguan; Chen, Guang; Wang, Yuanyuan; Huang, Yuqing; Marchant, D Blaine; Wang, Yizhou; Yang, Qian; Dai, Fei; Hills, Adrian; Franks, Peter J; Nevo, Eviatar; Soltis, Douglas E; Soltis, Pamela S; Sessa, Emily; Wolf, Paul G; Xue, Dawei; Zhang, Guoping; Pogson, Barry J; Blatt, Michael R; Chen, Zhong-Hua

    2017-06-01

    Abscisic acid (ABA)-driven stomatal regulation reportedly evolved after the divergence of ferns, during the early evolution of seed plants approximately 360 million years ago. This hypothesis is based on the observation that the stomata of certain fern species are unresponsive to ABA, but exhibit passive hydraulic control. However, ABA-induced stomatal closure was detected in some mosses and lycophytes. Here, we observed that a number of ABA signaling and membrane transporter protein families diversified over the evolutionary history of land plants. The aquatic ferns Azolla filiculoides and Salvinia cucullata have representatives of 23 families of proteins orthologous to those of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) and all other land plant species studied. Phylogenetic analysis of the key ABA signaling proteins indicates an evolutionarily conserved stomatal response to ABA. Moreover, comparative transcriptomic analysis has identified a suite of ABA-responsive genes that differentially expressed in a terrestrial fern species, Polystichum proliferum These genes encode proteins associated with ABA biosynthesis, transport, reception, transcription, signaling, and ion and sugar transport, which fit the general ABA signaling pathway constructed from Arabidopsis and Hordeum vulgare The retention of these key ABA-responsive genes could have had a profound effect on the adaptation of ferns to dry conditions. Furthermore, stomatal assays have shown the primary evidence for ABA-induced closure of stomata in two terrestrial fern species Pproliferum and Nephrolepis exaltata In summary, we report, to our knowledge, new molecular and physiological evidence for the presence of active stomatal control in ferns. © 2017 American Society of Plant Biologists. All Rights Reserved.

  2. How conservative are evolutionary anthropologists?: a survey of political attitudes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyle, Henry F; Smith, Eric A

    2012-09-01

    The application of evolutionary theory to human behavior has elicited a variety of critiques, some of which charge that this approach expresses or encourages conservative or reactionary political agendas. In a survey of graduate students in psychology, Tybur, Miller, and Gangestad (Human Nature, 18, 313-328, 2007) found that the political attitudes of those who use an evolutionary approach did not differ from those of other psychology grad students. Here, we present results from a directed online survey of a broad sample of graduate students in anthropology that assays political views. We found that evolutionary anthropology graduate students were very liberal in their political beliefs, overwhelmingly voted for a liberal U.S. presidential candidate in the 2008 election, and identified with liberal political parties; in this, they were almost indistinguishable from non-evolutionary anthropology students. Our results contradict the view that evolutionary anthropologists hold conservative or reactionary political views. We discuss some possible reasons for the persistence of this view in terms of the sociology of science.

  3. Evolutionary genomics of LysM genes in land plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stacey Gary

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The ubiquitous LysM motif recognizes peptidoglycan, chitooligosaccharides (chitin and, presumably, other structurally-related oligosaccharides. LysM-containing proteins were first shown to be involved in bacterial cell wall degradation and, more recently, were implicated in perceiving chitin (one of the established pathogen-associated molecular patterns and lipo-chitin (nodulation factors in flowering plants. However, the majority of LysM genes in plants remain functionally uncharacterized and the evolutionary history of complex LysM genes remains elusive. Results We show that LysM-containing proteins display a wide range of complex domain architectures. However, only a simple core architecture is conserved across kingdoms. Each individual kingdom appears to have evolved a distinct array of domain architectures. We show that early plant lineages acquired four characteristic architectures and progressively lost several primitive architectures. We report plant LysM phylogenies and associated gene, protein and genomic features, and infer the relative timing of duplications of LYK genes. Conclusion We report a domain architecture catalogue of LysM proteins across all kingdoms. The unique pattern of LysM protein domain architectures indicates the presence of distinctive evolutionary paths in individual kingdoms. We describe a comparative and evolutionary genomics study of LysM genes in plant kingdom. One of the two groups of tandemly arrayed plant LYK genes likely resulted from an ancient genome duplication followed by local genomic rearrangement, while the origin of the other groups of tandemly arrayed LYK genes remains obscure. Given the fact that no animal LysM motif-containing genes have been functionally characterized, this study provides clues to functional characterization of plant LysM genes and is also informative with regard to evolutionary and functional studies of animal LysM genes.

  4. Investigating evolutionary conservation of dendritic cell subset identity and functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thien-Phong eVu Manh

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Dendritic cells (DC were initially defined as mononuclear phagocytes with a dendritic morphology and an exquisite efficiency for naïve T cell activation. DC encompass several subsets initially identified by their expression of specific cell surface molecules and later shown to excel in distinct functions and to develop under the instruction of different transcription factors or cytokines. Very few cell surface molecules are expressed in a specific manner on any immune cell type. Hence, to identify cell types, the sole use of a small number of cell surface markers in classical flow cytometry can be deceiving. Moreover, the markers currently used to define mononuclear phagocyte subsets vary depending on the tissue and animal species studied and even between laboratories. This has led to confusion in the definition of DC subset identity and in their attribution of specific functions. There is a strong need to identify a rigorous and consensus way to define mononuclear phagocyte subsets, with precise guidelines potentially applicable throughout tissues and species. We will discuss the advantages, drawbacks and complementarities of different methodologies: cell surface phenotyping, ontogeny, functional characterization and molecular profiling. We will advocate that gene expression profiling is a very rigorous, largely unbiased and accessible method to define the identity of mononuclear phagocyte subsets, which strengthens and refines surface phenotyping. It is uniquely powerful to yield new, experimentally testable, hypotheses on the ontogeny or functions of mononuclear phagocyte subsets, their molecular regulation and their evolutionary conservation. We propose defining cell populations based on a combination of cell surface phenotyping, expression analysis of hallmark genes and robust functional assays, in order to reach a consensus and integrate faster the huge but scattered knowledge accumulated by different laboratories on different cell types

  5. Utilizing evolutionary information and gene expression data for estimating gene networks with bayesian network models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamada, Yoshinori; Bannai, Hideo; Imoto, Seiya; Katayama, Toshiaki; Kanehisa, Minoru; Miyano, Satoru

    2005-12-01

    Since microarray gene expression data do not contain sufficient information for estimating accurate gene networks, other biological information has been considered to improve the estimated networks. Recent studies have revealed that highly conserved proteins that exhibit similar expression patterns in different organisms, have almost the same function in each organism. Such conserved proteins are also known to play similar roles in terms of the regulation of genes. Therefore, this evolutionary information can be used to refine regulatory relationships among genes, which are estimated from gene expression data. We propose a statistical method for estimating gene networks from gene expression data by utilizing evolutionarily conserved relationships between genes. Our method simultaneously estimates two gene networks of two distinct organisms, with a Bayesian network model utilizing the evolutionary information so that gene expression data of one organism helps to estimate the gene network of the other. We show the effectiveness of the method through the analysis on Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Homo sapiens cell cycle gene expression data. Our method was successful in estimating gene networks that capture many known relationships as well as several unknown relationships which are likely to be novel. Supplementary information is available at http://bonsai.ims.u-tokyo.ac.jp/~tamada/bayesnet/.

  6. Does the evolutionary conservation of microsatellite loci imply function?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shriver, M.D.; Deka, R.; Ferrell, R.E. [Univ. of Pittsburgh, PA (United States)] [and others

    1994-09-01

    Microsatellites are highly polymorphic tandem arrays of short (1-6 bp) sequence motifs which have been found widely distributed in the genomes of all eukaryotes. We have analyzed allele frequency data on 16 microsatellite loci typed in the great apes (human, chimp, orangutan, and gorilla). The majority of these loci (13) were isolated from human genomic libraries; three were cloned from chimpanzee genomic DNA. Most of these loci are not only present in all apes species, but are polymorphic with comparable levels of heterozygosity and have alleles which overlap in size. The extent of divergence of allele frequencies among these four species were studies using the stepwise-weighted genetic distance (Dsw), which was previously shown to conform to linearity with evolutionary time since divergence for loci where mutations exist in a stepwise fashion. The phylogenetic tree of the great apes constructed from this distance matrix was consistent with the expected topology, with a high bootstrap confidence (82%) for the human/chimp clade. However, the allele frequency distributions of these species are 10 times more similar to each other than expected when they were calibrated with a conservative estimate of the time since separation of humans and the apes. These results are in agreement with sequence-based surveys of microsatellites which have demonstrated that they are highly (90%) conserved over short periods of evolutionary time (< 10 million years) and moderately (30%) conserved over long periods of evolutionary time (> 60-80 million years). This evolutionary conservation has prompted some authors to speculate that there are functional constraints on microsatellite loci. In contrast, the presence of directional bias of mutations with constraints and/or selection against aberrant sized alleles can explain these results.

  7. Evolutionary history of the iroquois/Irx genes in metazoans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ikmi Aissam

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The iroquois (iro/Irx genes encode transcriptional regulators that belong to the TALE superclass of homeodomain proteins and have key functions during development in both vertebrates and insects. The Irx genes occur in one or two genomic clusters containing three genes each within the Drosophila and several vertebrate genomes, respectively. The similar genomic organization in Drosophila and vertebrates is widely considered as a result of convergent evolution, due to independent tandem gene duplications. In this study, we investigate the evolutionary history of the Irx genes at the scale of the whole metazoan kingdom. Results We identified in silico the putative full complement of Irx genes in the sequenced genomes of 36 different species representative of the main metazoan lineages, including non bilaterian species, several arthropods, non vertebrate chordates, and a basal vertebrate, the sea lamprey. We performed extensive phylogenetic analyses of the identified Irx genes and defined their genomic organizations. We found that, in most species, there are several Irx genes, these genes form two to four gene clusters, and the Irx genes are physically linked to a structurally and functionally unrelated gene known as CG10632 in Drosophila. Conclusion Three main conclusions can be drawn from our study. First, an Irx cluster composed of two genes, araucan/caupolican and mirror, is ancestral to the crustaceans+insects clade and has been strongly conserved in this clade. Second, three Irx genes were probably present in the last common ancestor of vertebrates and the duplication that has given rise to the six genes organized into two clusters found in most vertebrates, likely occurred in the gnathostome lineage after its separation from sea lampreys. Third, the clustered organization of the Irx genes in various evolutionary lineages may represent an exceptional case of convergent evolution or may point to the existence of an Irx gene

  8. Making evolutionary history count: biodiversity planning for coral reef fishes and the conservation of evolutionary processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    von der Heyden, Sophie

    2017-03-01

    Anthropogenic activities are having devastating impacts on marine systems with numerous knock-on effects on trophic functioning, species interactions and an accelerated loss of biodiversity. Establishing conservation areas can not only protect biodiversity, but also confer resilience against changes to coral reefs and their inhabitants. Planning for protection and conservation in marine systems is complex, but usually focuses on maintaining levels of biodiversity and protecting special and unique landscape features while avoiding negative impacts to socio-economic benefits. Conversely, the integration of evolutionary processes that have shaped extant species assemblages is rarely taken into account. However, it is as important to protect processes as it is to protect patterns for maintaining the evolutionary trajectories of populations and species. This review focuses on different approaches for integrating genetic analyses, such as phylogenetic diversity, phylogeography and the delineation of management units, temporal and spatial monitoring of genetic diversity and quantification of adaptive variation for protecting evolutionary resilience, into marine spatial planning, specifically for coral reef fishes. Many of these concepts are not yet readily applied to coral reef fish studies, but this synthesis highlights their potential and the importance of including historical processes into systematic biodiversity planning for conserving not only extant, but also future, biodiversity and its evolutionary potential.

  9. Evolutionary-conserved telomere-linked helicase genes of fission yeast are repressed by silencing factors, RNAi components and the telomere-binding protein Taz1

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, K. R.; Ibarra, P. T.; Thon, G.

    2006-01-01

    In Schizosaccharomyces pombe the RNAi machinery and proteins mediating heterochromatin formation regulate the transcription of non-coding centromeric repeats. These repeats share a high sequence similarity with telomere-linked helicase (tlh) genes, implying an ancestral relationship between the two...... types of elements and suggesting that transcription of the tlh genes might be regulated by the same factors as centromeric repeats. Indeed, we found that mutants lacking the histone methyltransferase Clr4, the Pcu4 cullin, Clr7 or Clr8, accumulate high levels of tlh forward and reverse transcripts....... Mutations and conditions perturbing histone acetylation had similar effects further demonstrating that the tlh genes are normally repressed by heterochromatin. In contrast, mutations in the RNAi factors Dcr1, Ago1 or Rdp1 led only to a modest derepression of the tlh genes indicating an alternate pathway...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  11. Identification of the novel evolutionary conserved obstructor multigene family in invertebrates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Behr, Matthias; Hoch, Michael

    2005-12-19

    Insects have evolved chitin-containing structures such as the cuticle or peritrophic membranes that serve to protect their bodies against the hostile environment. The specific mechanisms by which these structures are produced, are mostly unknown. We have identified a novel multigene family, the obstructor family, which encodes ten putatively secreted chitin-binding proteins that are characterized by a stereotype arrangement of a N-terminal signaling peptide and 3 chitin-binding-domains. Gene expression studies in Drosophila melanogaster embryos demonstrate that obstructor family members are expressed in cuticle forming tissues. Using computational and phylogenetic analysis, we show that obstructor genes represent an evolutionary conserved multigene family in invertebrates.

  12. Identification of putative regulatory upstream ORFs in the yeast genome using heuristics and evolutionary conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bilsland Elizabeth

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The translational efficiency of an mRNA can be modulated by upstream open reading frames (uORFs present in certain genes. A uORF can attenuate translation of the main ORF by interfering with translational reinitiation at the main start codon. uORFs also occur by chance in the genome, in which case they do not have a regulatory role. Since the sequence determinants for functional uORFs are not understood, it is difficult to discriminate functional from spurious uORFs by sequence analysis. Results We have used comparative genomics to identify novel uORFs in yeast with a high likelihood of having a translational regulatory role. We examined uORFs, previously shown to play a role in regulation of translation in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, for evolutionary conservation within seven Saccharomyces species. Inspection of the set of conserved uORFs yielded the following three characteristics useful for discrimination of functional from spurious uORFs: a length between 4 and 6 codons, a distance from the start of the main ORF between 50 and 150 nucleotides, and finally a lack of overlap with, and clear separation from, neighbouring uORFs. These derived rules are inherently associated with uORFs with properties similar to the GCN4 locus, and may not detect most uORFs of other types. uORFs with high scores based on these rules showed a much higher evolutionary conservation than randomly selected uORFs. In a genome-wide scan in S. cerevisiae, we found 34 conserved uORFs from 32 genes that we predict to be functional; subsequent analysis showed the majority of these to be located within transcripts. A total of 252 genes were found containing conserved uORFs with properties indicative of a functional role; all but 7 are novel. Functional content analysis of this set identified an overrepresentation of genes involved in transcriptional control and development. Conclusion Evolutionary conservation of uORFs in yeasts can be traced up to 100

  13. Synonymous genes explore different evolutionary landscapes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guillaume Cambray

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available The evolutionary potential of a gene is constrained not only by the amino acid sequence of its product, but by its DNA sequence as well. The topology of the genetic code is such that half of the amino acids exhibit synonymous codons that can reach different subsets of amino acids from each other through single mutation. Thus, synonymous DNA sequences should access different regions of the protein sequence space through a limited number of mutations, and this may deeply influence the evolution of natural proteins. Here, we demonstrate that this feature can be of value for manipulating protein evolvability. We designed an algorithm that, starting from an input gene, constructs a synonymous sequence that systematically includes the codons with the most different evolutionary perspectives; i.e., codons that maximize accessibility to amino acids previously unreachable from the template by point mutation. A synonymous version of a bacterial antibiotic resistance gene was computed and synthesized. When concurrently submitted to identical directed evolution protocols, both the wild type and the recoded sequence led to the isolation of specific, advantageous phenotypic variants. Simulations based on a mutation isolated only from the synthetic gene libraries were conducted to assess the impact of sub-functional selective constraints, such as codon usage, on natural adaptation. Our data demonstrate that rational design of synonymous synthetic genes stands as an affordable improvement to any directed evolution protocol. We show that using two synonymous DNA sequences improves the overall yield of the procedure by increasing the diversity of mutants generated. These results provide conclusive evidence that synonymous coding sequences do experience different areas of the corresponding protein adaptive landscape, and that a sequence's codon usage effectively constrains the evolution of the encoded protein.

  14. Evolutionary rescue: linking theory for conservation and medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexander, Helen K; Martin, Guillaume; Martin, Oliver Y; Bonhoeffer, Sebastian

    2014-12-01

    Evolutionary responses that rescue populations from extinction when drastic environmental changes occur can be friend or foe. The field of conservation biology is concerned with the survival of species in deteriorating global habitats. In medicine, in contrast, infected patients are treated with chemotherapeutic interventions, but drug resistance can compromise eradication of pathogens. These contrasting biological systems and goals have created two quite separate research communities, despite addressing the same central question of whether populations will decline to extinction or be rescued through evolution. We argue that closer integration of the two fields, especially of theoretical understanding, would yield new insights and accelerate progress on these applied problems. Here, we overview and link mathematical modelling approaches in these fields, suggest specific areas with potential for fruitful exchange, and discuss common ideas and issues for empirical testing and prediction.

  15. Phenoscape: Identifying Candidate Genes for Evolutionary Phenotypes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edmunds, Richard C.; Su, Baofeng; Balhoff, James P.; Eames, B. Frank; Dahdul, Wasila M.; Lapp, Hilmar; Lundberg, John G.; Vision, Todd J.; Dunham, Rex A.; Mabee, Paula M.; Westerfield, Monte

    2016-01-01

    Phenotypes resulting from mutations in genetic model organisms can help reveal candidate genes for evolutionarily important phenotypic changes in related taxa. Although testing candidate gene hypotheses experimentally in nonmodel organisms is typically difficult, ontology-driven information systems can help generate testable hypotheses about developmental processes in experimentally tractable organisms. Here, we tested candidate gene hypotheses suggested by expert use of the Phenoscape Knowledgebase, specifically looking for genes that are candidates responsible for evolutionarily interesting phenotypes in the ostariophysan fishes that bear resemblance to mutant phenotypes in zebrafish. For this, we searched ZFIN for genetic perturbations that result in either loss of basihyal element or loss of scales phenotypes, because these are the ancestral phenotypes observed in catfishes (Siluriformes). We tested the identified candidate genes by examining their endogenous expression patterns in the channel catfish, Ictalurus punctatus. The experimental results were consistent with the hypotheses that these features evolved through disruption in developmental pathways at, or upstream of, brpf1 and eda/edar for the ancestral losses of basihyal element and scales, respectively. These results demonstrate that ontological annotations of the phenotypic effects of genetic alterations in model organisms, when aggregated within a knowledgebase, can be used effectively to generate testable, and useful, hypotheses about evolutionary changes in morphology. PMID:26500251

  16. EvoTol: a protein-sequence based evolutionary intolerance framework for disease-gene prioritization

    OpenAIRE

    Rackham, Owen?J.?L.; Shihab, Hashem A.; Johnson, Michael R.; Petretto, Enrico

    2014-01-01

    Methods to interpret personal genome sequences are increasingly required. Here, we report a novel framework (EvoTol) to identify disease-causing genes using patient sequence data from within protein coding-regions. EvoTol quantifies a gene's intolerance to mutation using evolutionary conservation of protein sequences and can incorporate tissue-specific gene expression data. We apply this framework to the analysis of whole-exome sequence data in epilepsy and congenital heart disease, and demon...

  17. Is gene flow the most important evolutionary force in plants?

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Ellstrand, Norman C

    2014-01-01

    Although theory has demonstrated rather low levels of gene flow are sufficient to counteract opposing mutation, drift, and selection, widespread recognition of the evolutionary importance of gene flow has come slowly...

  18. Forest gene conservation programs in Alberta, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jodie. Krakowski

    2017-01-01

    Provincial tree improvement programs in Alberta began in 1976. Early gene conservation focused on ex situ measures such as seed and clone banking, and research trials of commercial species with tree improvement programs. The gene conservation program now encompasses representative and unique populations of all native tree species in situ. The ex situ program aims to...

  19. Evolutionary placement of Xanthomonadales based on conserved protein signature sequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cutiño-Jiménez, Ania M; Martins-Pinheiro, Marinalva; Lima, Wanessa C; Martín-Tornet, Alexander; Morales, Osleidys G; Menck, Carlos F M

    2010-02-01

    Xanthomonadales comprises one of the largest phytopathogenic bacterial groups, and is currently classified within the gamma-proteobacteria. However, the phylogenetic placement of this group is not clearly resolved, and the results of different studies contradict one another. In this work, the evolutionary position of Xanthomonadales was determined by analyzing the presence of shared insertions and deletions (INDELs) in highly conserved proteins. Several distinctive insertions found in most of the members of the gamma-proteobacteria are absent in Xanthomonadales and groups such as Legionelalles, Chromatiales, Methylococcales, Thiotrichales and Cardiobacteriales. These INDELs were most likely introduced after the branching of Xanthomonadales from most of the gamma-proteobacteria and provide evidence for the phylogenetic placement of the early gamma-proteobacteria. Moreover, other proteins contain insertions exclusive to the Xanthomonadales order, confirming that this is a monophyletic group and provide important specific genetic markers. Thus, the data presented clearly support the Xanthomonadales group as an independent subdivision, and constitute one of the deepest branching lineage within the gamma-proteobacteria clade. Copyright (c) 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Developmental evolutionary biology of the vertebrate ear: conserving mechanoelectric transduction and developmental pathways in diverging morphologies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fritzsch, B.; Beisel, K. W.; Bermingham, N. A.

    2000-01-01

    This brief overview shows that a start has been made to molecularly dissect vertebrate ear development and its evolutionary conservation to the development of the insect hearing organ. However, neither the patterning process of the ear nor the patterning process of insect sensory organs is sufficiently known at the moment to provide more than a first glimpse. Moreover, hardly anything is known about otocyst development of the cephalopod molluscs, another triploblast lineage that evolved complex 'ears'. We hope that the apparent conserved functional and cellular components present in the ciliated sensory neurons/hair cells will also be found in the genes required for vertebrate ear and insect sensory organ morphogenesis (Fig. 3). Likewise, we expect that homologous pre-patterning genes will soon be identified for the non-sensory cell development, which is more than a blocking of neuronal development through the Delta/Notch signaling system. Generation of the apparently unique ear could thus represent a multiplication of non-sensory cells by asymmetric and symmetric divisions as well as modification of existing patterning process by implementing novel developmental modules. In the final analysis, the vertebrate ear may come about by increasing the level of gene interactions in an already existing and highly conserved interactive cascade of bHLH genes. Since this was apparently achieved in all three lineages of triploblasts independently (Fig. 3), we now need to understand how much of the morphogenetic cascades are equally conserved across phyla to generate complex ears. The existing mutations in humans and mice may be able to point the direction of future research to understand the development of specific cell types and morphologies in the formation of complex arthropod, cephalopod, and vertebrate 'ears'.

  1. Evolutionary rate patterns of the Gibberellin pathway genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhang Fu-min

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Analysis of molecular evolutionary patterns of different genes within metabolic pathways allows us to determine whether these genes are subject to equivalent evolutionary forces and how natural selection shapes the evolution of proteins in an interacting system. Although previous studies found that upstream genes in the pathway evolved more slowly than downstream genes, the correlation between evolutionary rate and position of the genes in metabolic pathways as well as its implications in molecular evolution are still less understood. Results We sequenced and characterized 7 core structural genes of the gibberellin biosynthetic pathway from 8 representative species of the rice tribe (Oryzeae to address alternative hypotheses regarding evolutionary rates and patterns of metabolic pathway genes. We have detected significant rate heterogeneity among 7 GA pathway genes for both synonymous and nonsynonymous sites. Such rate variation is mostly likely attributed to differences of selection intensity rather than differential mutation pressures on the genes. Unlike previous argument that downstream genes in metabolic pathways would evolve more slowly than upstream genes, the downstream genes in the GA pathway did not exhibited the elevated substitution rate and instead, the genes that encode either the enzyme at the branch point (GA20ox or enzymes catalyzing multiple steps (KO, KAO and GA3ox in the pathway had the lowest evolutionary rates due to strong purifying selection. Our branch and codon models failed to detect signature of positive selection for any lineage and codon of the GA pathway genes. Conclusion This study suggests that significant heterogeneity of evolutionary rate of the GA pathway genes is mainly ascribed to differential constraint relaxation rather than the positive selection and supports the pathway flux theory that predicts that natural selection primarily targets enzymes that have the greatest control on fluxes.

  2. Evolutionary biology in biodiversity science, conservation, and policy: a call to action.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hendry, Andrew P; Lohmann, Lúcia G; Conti, Elena; Cracraft, Joel; Crandall, Keith A; Faith, Daniel P; Häuser, Christoph; Joly, Carlos A; Kogure, Kazuhiro; Larigauderie, Anne; Magallón, Susana; Moritz, Craig; Tillier, Simon; Zardoya, Rafael; Prieur-Richard, Anne-Hélène; Walther, Bruno A; Yahara, Tetsukazu; Donoghue, Michael J

    2010-05-01

    Evolutionary biologists have long endeavored to document how many species exist on Earth, to understand the processes by which biodiversity waxes and wanes, to document and interpret spatial patterns of biodiversity, and to infer evolutionary relationships. Despite the great potential of this knowledge to improve biodiversity science, conservation, and policy, evolutionary biologists have generally devoted limited attention to these broader implications. Likewise, many workers in biodiversity science have underappreciated the fundamental relevance of evolutionary biology. The aim of this article is to summarize and illustrate some ways in which evolutionary biology is directly relevant. We do so in the context of four broad areas: (1) discovering and documenting biodiversity, (2) understanding the causes of diversification, (3) evaluating evolutionary responses to human disturbances, and (4) implications for ecological communities, ecosystems, and humans. We also introduce bioGENESIS, a new project within DIVERSITAS launched to explore the potential practical contributions of evolutionary biology. In addition to fostering the integration of evolutionary thinking into biodiversity science, bioGENESIS provides practical recommendations to policy makers for incorporating evolutionary perspectives into biodiversity agendas and conservation. We solicit your involvement in developing innovative ways of using evolutionary biology to better comprehend and stem the loss of biodiversity.

  3. Divergence and Conservative Evolution of XTNX Genes in Land Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan-Mei Zhang

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The Toll-interleukin-1 receptor (TIR and Nucleotide-binding site (NBS domains are two major components of the TIR-NBS-leucine-rich repeat family plant disease resistance genes. Extensive functional and evolutionary studies have been performed on these genes; however, the characterization of a small group of genes that are composed of atypical TIR and NBS domains, namely XTNX genes, is limited. The present study investigated this specific gene family by conducting genome-wide analyses of 59 green plant genomes. A total of 143 XTNX genes were identified in 51 of the 52 land plant genomes, whereas no XTNX gene was detected in any green algae genomes, which indicated that XTNX genes originated upon emergence of land plants. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that the ancestral XTNX gene underwent two rounds of ancient duplications in land plants, which resulted in the formation of clades I/II and clades IIa/IIb successively. Although clades I and IIb have evolved conservatively in angiosperms, the motif composition difference and sequence divergence at the amino acid level suggest that functional divergence may have occurred since the separation of the two clades. In contrast, several features of the clade IIa genes, including the absence in the majority of dicots, the long branches in the tree, the frequent loss of ancestral motifs, and the loss of expression in all detected tissues of Zea mays, all suggest that the genes in this lineage might have undergone pseudogenization. This study highlights that XTNX genes are a gene family originated anciently in land plants and underwent specific conservative pattern in evolution.

  4. Evolutionary Dynamics of the wnt Gene Family: A Lophotrochozoan Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cho, Sung-Jin; Vallès, Yvonne; Giani, Vincent C.; Seaver, Elaine C.; Weisblat, David A.

    2010-01-01

    The wnt gene family encodes a set of secreted glycoproteins involved in key developmental processes, including cell fate specification and regulation of posterior growth (Cadigan KM, Nusse R. 1997. Wnt signaling: a common theme in animal development. Genes Dev. 11:3286–3305.; Martin BL, Kimelman D. 2009. Wnt signaling and the evolution of embryonic posterior development. Curr Biol. 19:R215–R219.). As for many other gene families, evidence for expansion and/or contraction of the wnt family is available from deuterostomes (e.g., echinoderms and vertebrates [Nusse R, Varmus HE. 1992. Wnt genes. Cell. 69:1073–1087.; Schubert M, Holland LZ, Holland ND, Jacobs DK. 2000. A phylogenetic tree of the Wnt genes based on all available full-length sequences, including five from the cephalochordate amphioxus. Mol Biol Evol. 17:1896–1903.; Croce JC, Wu SY, Byrum C, Xu R, Duloquin L, Wikramanayake AH, Gache C, McClay DR. 2006. A genome-wide survey of the evolutionarily conserved Wnt pathways in the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus. Dev Biol. 300:121–131.]) and ecdysozoans (e.g., arthropods and nematodes [Eisenmann DM. 2005. Wnt signaling. WormBook. 1–17.; Bolognesi R, Farzana L, Fischer TD, Brown SJ. 2008. Multiple Wnt genes are required for segmentation in the short-germ embryo of Tribolium castaneum. Curr Biol. 18:1624–1629.]), but little is known from the third major bilaterian group, the lophotrochozoans (e.g., mollusks and annelids [Prud'homme B, Lartillot N, Balavoine G, Adoutte A, Vervoort M. 2002. Phylogenetic analysis of the Wnt gene family. Insights from lophotrochozoan members. Curr Biol. 12:1395.]). To obtain a more comprehensive scenario of the evolutionary dynamics of this gene family, we exhaustively mined wnt gene sequences from the whole genome assemblies of a mollusk (Lottia gigantea) and two annelids (Capitella teleta and Helobdella robusta) and examined them by phylogenetic, genetic linkage, intron–exon structure, and embryonic

  5. Parallel evolutionary events in the haptoglobin gene clusters of rhesus monkey and human

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Erickson, L.M.; Maeda, N. [Univ. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC (United States)

    1994-08-01

    Parallel occurrences of evolutionary events in the haptoglobin gene clusters of rhesus monkeys and humans were studied. We found six different haplotypes among 11 individuals from two rhesus monkey families. The six haplotypes include two types of haptoglobin gene clusters: one type with a single gene and the other with two genes. DNA sequence analysis indicates that the one-gene and the two-gene clusters were both formed by unequal homologous crossovers between two genes of an ancestral three-gene cluster, near exon 5, the longest exon of the gene. This exon is also the location where a separate unequal homologous crossover occured in the human lineage, forming the human two-gene haptoglobin gene cluster from an ancestral three-gene cluster. The occurrence of independent homologous unequal crossovers in rhesus monkey and in human within the same region of DNA suggests that the evolutionary history of the haptoglobin gene cluster in primates is the consequence of frequent homologous pairings facilitated by the longest and most conserved exon of the gene. 27 refs., 7 figs., 1 tab.

  6. Evolutionary and Topological Properties of Genes and Community Structures in Human Gene Regulatory Networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-06-01

    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.

  7. Understanding missense mutations in the BRCA1 gene: An evolutionary approach

    OpenAIRE

    Fleming, Melissa A.; Potter, John D.; Ramirez, Christina J.; Ostrander, Gary K.; Ostrander, Elaine A.

    2003-01-01

    The role of missense changes in BRCA1 in breast cancer susceptibility has been difficult to establish. We used comparative evolutionary methods to identify potential functionally important amino acid sites in exon 11 and missense changes likely to disrupt gene function, aligning sequences from 57 eutherian mammals and categorizing amino acid sites by degree of conservation. We used Bayesian phylogenetic analyses to determine relationships among orthologs and identify codons evolving under pos...

  8. The evolution of novelty in conserved gene families.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Markov, Gabriel V; Sommer, Ralf J

    2012-01-01

    One of the major aims of contemporary evolutionary biology is the understanding of the current pattern of biological diversity. This involves, first, the description of character distribution at various nodes of the phylogenetic tree of life and, second, the functional explanation of such changes. The analysis of character distribution is a powerful tool at both the morphological and molecular levels. Recent high-throughput sequencing approaches provide new opportunities to study the genetic architecture of organisms at the genome-wide level. In eukaryotes, one overarching finding is the absence of simple correlations of gene count and biological complexity. Instead, the domain architecture of proteins is becoming a central focus for large-scale evolutionary innovations. Here, we review examples of the evolution of novelty in conserved gene families in insects and nematodes. We highlight how in the absence of whole-genome duplications molecular novelty can arise, how members of gene families have diversified at distinct mechanistic levels, and how gene expression can be maintained in the context of multiple innovations in regulatory mechanisms.

  9. An evolutionary conserved role for anaplastic lymphoma kinase in behavioral responses to ethanol.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amy W Lasek

    Full Text Available Anaplastic lymphoma kinase (Alk is a gene expressed in the nervous system that encodes a receptor tyrosine kinase commonly known for its oncogenic function in various human cancers. We have determined that Alk is associated with altered behavioral responses to ethanol in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster, in mice, and in humans. Mutant flies containing transposon insertions in dAlk demonstrate increased resistance to the sedating effect of ethanol. Database analyses revealed that Alk expression levels in the brains of recombinant inbred mice are negatively correlated with ethanol-induced ataxia and ethanol consumption. We therefore tested Alk gene knockout mice and found that they sedate longer in response to high doses of ethanol and consume more ethanol than wild-type mice. Finally, sequencing of human ALK led to the discovery of four polymorphisms associated with a low level of response to ethanol, an intermediate phenotype that is predictive of future alcohol use disorders (AUDs. These results suggest that Alk plays an evolutionary conserved role in ethanol-related behaviors. Moreover, ALK may be a novel candidate gene conferring risk for AUDs as well as a potential target for pharmacological intervention.

  10. Evolutionary plasticity of habenular asymmetry with a conserved efferent connectivity pattern.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aldo Villalón

    Full Text Available The vertebrate habenulae (Hb is an evolutionary conserved dorsal diencephalic nuclear complex that relays information from limbic and striatal forebrain regions to the ventral midbrain. One key feature of this bilateral nucleus is the presence of left-right differences in size, cytoarchitecture, connectivity, neurochemistry and/or gene expression. In teleosts, habenular asymmetry has been associated with preferential innervation of left-right habenular efferents into dorso-ventral domains of the midbrain interpeduncular nucleus (IPN. However, the degree of conservation of this trait and its relation to the structural asymmetries of the Hb are currently unknown. To address these questions, we performed the first systematic comparative analysis of structural and connectional asymmetries of the Hb in teleosts. We found striking inter-species variability in the overall shape and cytoarchitecture of the Hb, and in the frequency, strength and to a lesser degree, laterality of habenular volume at the population level. Directional asymmetry of the Hb was either to the left in D. rerio, E. bicolor, O. latipes, P. reticulata, B. splendens, or to the right in F. gardneri females. In contrast, asymmetry was absent in P. scalare and F. gardneri males at the population level, although in these species the Hb displayed volumetric asymmetries at the individual level. Inter-species variability was more pronounced across orders than within a single order, and coexisted with an overall conserved laterotopic representation of left-right habenular efferents into dorso-ventral domains of the IPN. These results suggest that the circuit design involving the Hb of teleosts promotes structural flexibility depending on developmental, cognitive and/or behavioural pressures, without affecting the main midbrain connectivity output, thus unveiling a key conserved role of this connectivity trait in the function of the circuit. We propose that ontogenic plasticity in habenular

  11. Widespread evolutionary conservation of alternatively spliced exons in caenorhabditis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2007-01-01

    Alternative splicing (AS) contributes to increased transcriptome and proteome diversity in various eukaryotic lineages. Previous studies showed low levels of conservation of alternatively spliced (cassette) exons within mammals and within dipterans. We report a strikingly different pattern...... in Caenorhabditis nematodes-more than 92% of cassette exons from Caenorhabditis elegans are conserved in Caenorhabditis briggsae and/or Caenorhabditis remanei. High levels of conservation extend to minor-form exons (present in a minority of transcripts) and are particularly pronounced for exons showing complex...... patterns of splicing. The functionality of the vast majority of cassette exons is underscored by various other features. We suggest that differences in conservation between lineages reflect differences in levels of functionality and further suggest that these differences are due to differences in intron...

  12. Evolutionary analyses of non-family genes in plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ye, Chuyu [ORNL; Li, Ting [ORNL; Yin, Hengfu [ORNL; Weston, David [ORNL; Tuskan, Gerald A [ORNL; Tschaplinski, Timothy J [ORNL; Yang, Xiaohan [ORNL

    2013-01-01

    There are a large number of non-family (NF) genes that do not cluster into families with three or more members per genome. While gene families have been extensively studied, a systematic analysis of NF genes has not been reported. We performed comparative studies on NF genes in 14 plant species. Based on the clustering of protein sequences, we identified ~94 000 NF genes across these species that were divided into five evolutionary groups: Viridiplantae wide, angiosperm specific, monocot specific, dicot specific, and those that were species specific. Our analysis revealed that the NF genes resulted largely from less frequent gene duplications and/or a higher rate of gene loss after segmental duplication relative to genes in both lowcopy- number families (LF; 3 10 copies per genome) and high-copy-number families (HF; >10 copies). Furthermore, we identified functions enriched in the NF gene set as compared with the HF genes. We found that NF genes were involved in essential biological processes shared by all plant lineages (e.g. photosynthesis and translation), as well as gene regulation and stress responses associated with phylogenetic diversification. In particular, our analysis of an Arabidopsis protein protein interaction network revealed that hub proteins with the top 10% most connections were over-represented in the NF set relative to the HF set. This research highlights the roles that NF genes may play in evolutionary and functional genomics research.

  13. Evolutionary analyses of non-family genes in plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ye, Chuyu [ORNL; Li, Ting [ORNL; Yin, Hengfu [ORNL; Weston, David [ORNL; Tuskan, Gerald A [ORNL; Tschaplinski, Timothy J [ORNL; Yang, Xiaohan [ORNL

    2013-03-01

    There are a large number of non-family (NF) genes that do not cluster into families with three or more members per genome. While gene families have been extensively studied, a systematic analysis of NF genes has not been reported. We performed comparative studies on NF genes in 14 plant species. Based on the clustering of protein sequences, we identified ~94,000 NF genes across these species that were divided into five evolutionary groups: Viridiplantae-wide, angiosperm-specific, monocot-specific, dicot-specific, and those that were species-specific. Our analysis revealed that the NF genes resulted largely from less frequent gene duplications and/or a higher rate of gene loss after segmental duplication relative to genes in both low-copy-number families (LF; 3 10 copies per genome) and high-copy-number families (HF; >10 copies). Furthermore, we identified functions enriched in the NF gene set as compared with the HF genes. We found that NF genes were involved in essential biological processes shared by all plant lineages (e.g., photosynthesis and translation), as well as gene regulation and stress responses associated with phylogenetic diversification. In particular, our analysis of an Arabidopsis protein-protein interaction network revealed that hub proteins with the top 10% most connections were over-represented in the NF set relative to the HF set. This research highlights the roles that NF genes may play in evolutionary and functional genomics research.

  14. Conservation of the Keap1-Nrf2 System: An Evolutionary Journey through Stressful Space and Time

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuji Fuse

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available The Keap1-Nrf2 system is an evolutionarily conserved defense mechanism against oxidative and xenobiotic stress. Its regulatory mechanisms, e.g., stress-sensing mechanism, proteasome-based regulation of Nrf2 activity and selection of target genes, have been elucidated mainly in mammals. In addition, emerging model animals, such as zebrafish, fruit fly and Caenorhabditis elegans, have been shown to have similar anti-stress systems to mammals, suggesting that analogous defense systems are widely conserved throughout the animal kingdom. Experimental evidence in lower animals provides important information beyond mere laboratory-confined utility, such as regarding how these systems transformed during evolution, which may help characterize the mammalian system in greater detail. Recent advances in genome projects of both model and non-model animals have provided a great deal of useful information toward this end. We herein review the research on Keap1-Nrf2 and its analogous systems in both mammals and lower model animals. In addition, by comparing the amino acid sequences of Nrf2 and Keap1 proteins from various species, we can deduce the evolutionary history of the anti-stress system. This combinatorial approach using both experimental and genetic data will suggest perspectives of approach for researchers studying the stress response.

  15. Conservation of the Keap1-Nrf2 System: An Evolutionary Journey through Stressful Space and Time.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuse, Yuji; Kobayashi, Makoto

    2017-03-09

    The Keap1-Nrf2 system is an evolutionarily conserved defense mechanism against oxidative and xenobiotic stress. Its regulatory mechanisms, e.g., stress-sensing mechanism, proteasome-based regulation of Nrf2 activity and selection of target genes, have been elucidated mainly in mammals. In addition, emerging model animals, such as zebrafish, fruit fly and Caenorhabditis elegans , have been shown to have similar anti-stress systems to mammals, suggesting that analogous defense systems are widely conserved throughout the animal kingdom. Experimental evidence in lower animals provides important information beyond mere laboratory-confined utility, such as regarding how these systems transformed during evolution, which may help characterize the mammalian system in greater detail. Recent advances in genome projects of both model and non-model animals have provided a great deal of useful information toward this end. We herein review the research on Keap1-Nrf2 and its analogous systems in both mammals and lower model animals. In addition, by comparing the amino acid sequences of Nrf2 and Keap1 proteins from various species, we can deduce the evolutionary history of the anti-stress system. This combinatorial approach using both experimental and genetic data will suggest perspectives of approach for researchers studying the stress response.

  16. Antibodies directed against monomorphic and evolutionary conserved self epitopes may be generated in 'knock-out' mice. Development of monoclonal antibodies directed against monomorphic MHC class I determinants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Claesson, M H; Endel, B; Ulrik, J

    1994-01-01

    of culture. It is concluded that MoAbs reacting with monomorphic self epitopes may be generated using animals deleted of the gene of interest. The implications may be far reaching since such MoAbs potentially identify evolutionary conserved and physiologically important epitopes....

  17. Evolutionary Analysis of MIKCc-Type MADS-Box Genes in Gymnosperms and Angiosperms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fei Chen

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available MIKCc-type MADS-box genes encode transcription factors that control floral organ morphogenesis and flowering time in flowering plants. Here, in order to determine when the subfamilies of MIKCc originated and their early evolutionary trajectory, we sampled and analyzed the genomes and large-scale transcriptomes representing all the orders of gymnosperms and basal angiosperms. Through phylogenetic inference, the MIKCc-type MADS-box genes were subdivided into 14 monophyletic clades. Among them, the gymnosperm orthologs of AGL6, SEP, AP1, GMADS, SOC1, AGL32, AP3/PI, SVP, AGL15, ANR1, and AG were identified. We identified and characterized the origin of a novel subfamily GMADS within gymnosperms but lost orthologs in monocots and Brassicaceae. ABCE model prototype genes were relatively conserved in terms of gene number in gymnosperms, but expanded in angiosperms, whereas SVP, SOC1, and GMADS had dramatic expansions in gymnosperms but conserved in angiosperms. Our results provided the most detailed evolutionary history of all MIKCc gene clades in gymnosperms and angiosperms. We proposed that although the near complete set of MIKCc genes had evolved in gymnosperms, the duplication and expressional transition of ABCE model MIKCc genes in the ancestor of angiosperms triggered the first flower.

  18. Evolutionary Analysis of MIKCc-Type MADS-Box Genes in Gymnosperms and Angiosperms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Fei; Zhang, Xingtan; Liu, Xing; Zhang, Liangsheng

    2017-01-01

    MIKCc-type MADS-box genes encode transcription factors that control floral organ morphogenesis and flowering time in flowering plants. Here, in order to determine when the subfamilies of MIKCc originated and their early evolutionary trajectory, we sampled and analyzed the genomes and large-scale transcriptomes representing all the orders of gymnosperms and basal angiosperms. Through phylogenetic inference, the MIKCc-type MADS-box genes were subdivided into 14 monophyletic clades. Among them, the gymnosperm orthologs of AGL6, SEP, AP1, GMADS, SOC1, AGL32, AP3/PI, SVP, AGL15, ANR1, and AG were identified. We identified and characterized the origin of a novel subfamily GMADS within gymnosperms but lost orthologs in monocots and Brassicaceae. ABCE model prototype genes were relatively conserved in terms of gene number in gymnosperms, but expanded in angiosperms, whereas SVP, SOC1, and GMADS had dramatic expansions in gymnosperms but conserved in angiosperms. Our results provided the most detailed evolutionary history of all MIKCc gene clades in gymnosperms and angiosperms. We proposed that although the near complete set of MIKCc genes had evolved in gymnosperms, the duplication and expressional transition of ABCE model MIKCc genes in the ancestor of angiosperms triggered the first flower. PMID:28611810

  19. Correlation of microsynteny conservation and disease gene distribution in mammalian genomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Xiting

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background With the completion of the whole genome sequence for many organisms, investigations into genomic structure have revealed that gene distribution is variable, and that genes with similar function or expression are located within clusters. This clustering suggests that there are evolutionary constraints that determine genome architecture. However, as most of the evidence for constraints on genome evolution comes from studies on yeast, it is unclear how much of this prior work can be extrapolated to mammalian genomes. Therefore, in this work we wished to examine the constraints on regions of the mammalian genome containing conserved gene clusters. Results We first identified regions of the mouse genome with microsynteny conservation by comparing gene arrangement in the mouse genome to the human, rat, and dog genomes. We then asked if any particular gene types were found preferentially in conserved regions. We found a significant correlation between conserved microsynteny and the density of mouse orthologs of human disease genes, suggesting that disease genes are clustered in genomic regions of increased microsynteny conservation. Conclusion The correlation between microsynteny conservation and disease gene locations indicates that regions of the mouse genome with microsynteny conservation may contain undiscovered human disease genes. This study not only demonstrates that gene function constrains mammalian genome organization, but also identifies regions of the mouse genome that can be experimentally examined to produce mouse models of human disease.

  20. Evolutionary conservation of Kv3.1 in the barn owl Tyto alba.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kullmann, Lars; Schlüter, Tina; Wagner, Hermann; Nothwang, Hans Gerd

    2013-01-01

    For prey capture in the dark, the barn owl Tyto alba has evolved into an auditory specialist with an exquisite capability of sound localization. Adaptations include asymmetrical ears, enlarged auditory processing centers, the utilization of minute interaural time differences, and phase locking along the entire hearing range up to 10 kHz. Adaptations on the molecular level have not yet been investigated. Here, we tested the hypothesis that divergence in the amino acid sequence of the voltage-gated K(+) channel Kv3.1 contributes to the accuracy and high firing rates of auditory neurons in the barn owl. We therefore cloned both splice variants of Kcnc1, the gene encoding Kv3.1. Both splice variants, Kcnc1a and Kcnc1b, encode amino acids identical to those of the chicken, an auditory generalist. Expression analyses confirmed neural-restricted expression of the channel. In summary, our data reveal strong evolutionary conservation of Kcnc1 in the barn owl and point to other genes involved in auditory specializations of this animal. The data also demonstrate the feasibility to address neuroethological questions in organisms with no reference genome by molecular approaches. This will open new avenues for neuroethologists working in these organisms. Copyright © 2013 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  1. Evolutionary conservation of sequence and secondary structures inCRISPR repeats

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kunin, Victor; Sorek, Rotem; Hugenholtz, Philip

    2006-09-01

    Clustered Regularly Interspaced Palindromic Repeats (CRISPRs) are a novel class of direct repeats, separated by unique spacer sequences of similar length, that are present in {approx}40% of bacterial and all archaeal genomes analyzed to date. More than 40 gene families, called CRISPR-associated sequences (CAS), appear in conjunction with these repeats and are thought to be involved in the propagation and functioning of CRISPRs. It has been proposed that the CRISPR/CAS system samples, maintains a record of, and inactivates invasive DNA that the cell has encountered, and therefore constitutes a prokaryotic analog of an immune system. Here we analyze CRISPR repeats identified in 195 microbial genomes and show that they can be organized into multiple clusters based on sequence similarity. All individual repeats in any given cluster were inferred to form characteristic RNA secondary structure, ranging from non-existent to pronounced. Stable secondary structures included G:U base pairs and exhibited multiple compensatory base changes in the stem region, indicating evolutionary conservation and functional importance. We also show that the repeat-based classification corresponds to, and expands upon, a previously reported CAS gene-based classification including specific relationships between CRISPR and CAS subtypes.

  2. Diversity of secondary endosymbiont-derived actin-coding genes in cryptomonads and their evolutionary implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanifuji, Goro; Erata, Mayumi; Ishida, Ken-ichiro; Onodera, Naoko; Hara, Yoshiaki

    2006-05-01

    In the secondary endosymbiotic organisms of cryptomonads, the symbiont actin genes have been found together with the host one. To examine whether they are commonly conserved and where they are encoded, host and symbiont actin genes from Pyrenomonas helgolandii were isolated, and their specific and homologous regions were digoxigenin (DIG) labeled separately. Using these probes, Southern hybridization was performed on 13 species of cryptomonads. They were divided into three groups: (1) both host and symbiont actin gene signals were detected, (2) only the host actin gene signal was detected, and (3) host and unknown actin signals were detected. The phylogenetic analysis of these actin gene sequences indicated that the evolutionary rates of the symbiont actin genes were accelerated more than those of the hosts. The unknown actin signals were recognized as the highly diverged symbiont actin genes. One of the diverged symbiont actin sequences from Guillardia theta is presumed to be as a pseudogene or to its precursor. Southern hybridizations based on the samples divided by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis showed that all actin genes were encoded by the host nuclei. These results possibly represent the evolutionary fate of the symbiont actin gene in cryptomonads, which was firstly transferred from the symbiont nucleus or nucleomorph, to the host nucleus and became a pseudogene and then finally disappeared there.

  3. Evolution, functional divergence and conserved exon-intron structure of bHLH/PAS gene family.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Jun; Ma, Zhaowu; Xu, Xiaopeng; Guo, An-Yuan

    2014-02-01

    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.

  4. Teaching the Toolkit: A Laboratory Series to Demonstrate the Evolutionary Conservation of Metazoan Cell Signaling Pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    LeClair, Elizabeth E.

    2008-01-01

    A major finding of comparative genomics and developmental genetics is that metazoans share certain conserved, embryonically deployed signaling pathways that instruct cells as to their ultimate fate. Because the DNA encoding these pathways predates the evolutionary split of most animal groups, it should in principle be possible to clone…

  5. Evolutionary origins of Brassicaceae specific genes in Arabidopsis thaliana

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-01

    Background All sequenced genomes contain a proportion of lineage-specific genes, which exhibit no sequence similarity to any genes outside the lineage. Despite their prevalence, the origins and functions of most lineage-specific genes remain largely unknown. As more genomes are sequenced opportunities for understanding evolutionary origins and functions of lineage-specific genes are increasing. Results This study provides a comprehensive analysis of the origins of lineage-specific genes (LSGs) in Arabidopsis thaliana that are restricted to the Brassicaceae family. In this study, lineage-specific genes within the nuclear (1761 genes) and mitochondrial (28 genes) genomes are identified. The evolutionary origins of two thirds of the lineage-specific genes within the Arabidopsis thaliana genome are also identified. Almost a quarter of lineage-specific genes originate from non-lineage-specific paralogs, while the origins of ~10% of lineage-specific genes are partly derived from DNA exapted from transposable elements (twice the proportion observed for non-lineage-specific genes). Lineage-specific genes are also enriched in genes that have overlapping CDS, which is consistent with such novel genes arising from overprinting. Over half of the subset of the 958 lineage-specific genes found only in Arabidopsis thaliana have alignments to intergenic regions in Arabidopsis lyrata, consistent with either de novo origination or differential gene loss and retention, with both evolutionary scenarios explaining the lineage-specific status of these genes. A smaller number of lineage-specific genes with an incomplete open reading frame across different Arabidopsis thaliana accessions are further identified as accession-specific genes, most likely of recent origin in Arabidopsis thaliana. Putative de novo origination for two of the Arabidopsis thaliana-only genes is identified via additional sequencing across accessions of Arabidopsis thaliana and closely related sister species

  6. Evolutionary dynamics of the interferon-induced transmembrane gene family in vertebrates.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhao Zhang

    Full Text Available Vertebrate interferon-induced transmembrane (IFITM genes have been demonstrated to have extensive and diverse functions, playing important roles in the evolution of vertebrates. Despite observance of their functionality, the evolutionary dynamics of this gene family are complex and currently unknown. Here, we performed detailed evolutionary analyses to unravel the evolutionary history of the vertebrate IFITM family. A total of 174 IFITM orthologous genes and 112 pseudogenes were identified from 27 vertebrate genome sequences. The vertebrate IFITM family can be divided into immunity-related IFITM (IR-IFITM, IFITM5 and IFITM10 sub-families in phylogeny, implying origins from three different progenitors. In general, vertebrate IFITM genes are located in two loci, one containing the IFITM10 gene, and the other locus containing IFITM5 and various numbers of IR-IFITM genes. Conservation of evolutionary synteny was observed in these IFITM genes. Significant functional divergence was detected among the three IFITM sub-families. No gene duplication or positive selection was found in IFITM5 sub-family, implying the functional conservation of IFITM5 in vertebrate evolution, which is involved in bone formation. No IFITM5 locus was identified in the marmoset genome, suggesting a potential association with the tiny size of this monkey. The IFITM10 sub-family was divided into two groups: aquatic and terrestrial types. Functional divergence was detected between the two groups, and five IFITM10-like genes from frog were dispersed into the two groups. Both gene duplication and positive selection were observed in aquatic vertebrate IFITM10-like genes, indicating that IFITM10 might be associated with the adaptation to aquatic environments. A large number of lineage- and species-specific gene duplications were observed in IR-IFITM sub-family and positive selection was detected in IR-IFITM of primates and rodents. Because primates have experienced a long history of

  7. Tracing Evolutionary Footprints to Identify Novel Gene Functional Linkages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Shuyan; He, Tong; Mao, Fenglou; Zhang, Congyan; Zhang, Huina; Huo, Chaoxing; Liu, Pingsheng

    2013-01-01

    Systematic determination of gene function is an essential step in fully understanding the precise contribution of each gene for the proper execution of molecular functions in the cell. Gene functional linkage is defined as to describe the relationship of a group of genes with similar functions. With thousands of genomes sequenced, there arises a great opportunity to utilize gene evolutionary information to identify gene functional linkages. To this end, we established a computational method (called TRACE) to trace gene footprints through a gene functional network constructed from 341 prokaryotic genomes. TRACE performance was validated and successfully tested to predict enzyme functions as well as components of pathway. A so far undescribed chromosome partitioning-like protein ro03654 of an oleaginous bacteria Rhodococcus sp. RHA1 (RHA1) was predicted and verified experimentally with its deletion mutant showing growth inhibition compared to RHA1 wild type. In addition, four proteins were predicted to act as prokaryotic SNARE-like proteins, and two of them were shown to be localized at the plasma membrane. Thus, we believe that TRACE is an effective new method to infer prokaryotic gene functional linkages by tracing evolutionary events. PMID:23825567

  8. Tracing evolutionary footprints to identify novel gene functional linkages.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yong Chen

    Full Text Available Systematic determination of gene function is an essential step in fully understanding the precise contribution of each gene for the proper execution of molecular functions in the cell. Gene functional linkage is defined as to describe the relationship of a group of genes with similar functions. With thousands of genomes sequenced, there arises a great opportunity to utilize gene evolutionary information to identify gene functional linkages. To this end, we established a computational method (called TRACE to trace gene footprints through a gene functional network constructed from 341 prokaryotic genomes. TRACE performance was validated and successfully tested to predict enzyme functions as well as components of pathway. A so far undescribed chromosome partitioning-like protein ro03654 of an oleaginous bacteria Rhodococcus sp. RHA1 (RHA1 was predicted and verified experimentally with its deletion mutant showing growth inhibition compared to RHA1 wild type. In addition, four proteins were predicted to act as prokaryotic SNARE-like proteins, and two of them were shown to be localized at the plasma membrane. Thus, we believe that TRACE is an effective new method to infer prokaryotic gene functional linkages by tracing evolutionary events.

  9. Evolutionary dynamics of gene and isoform regulation in Mammalian tissues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merkin, Jason; Russell, Caitlin; Chen, Ping; Burge, Christopher B

    2012-12-21

    Most mammalian genes produce multiple distinct messenger RNAs through alternative splicing, but the extent of splicing conservation is not clear. To assess tissue-specific transcriptome variation across mammals, we sequenced complementary DNA from nine tissues from four mammals and one bird in biological triplicate, at unprecedented depth. We find that while tissue-specific gene expression programs are largely conserved, alternative splicing is well conserved in only a subset of tissues and is frequently lineage-specific. Thousands of previously unknown, lineage-specific, and conserved alternative exons were identified; widely conserved alternative exons had signatures of binding by MBNL, PTB, RBFOX, STAR, and TIA family splicing factors, implicating them as ancestral mammalian splicing regulators. Our data also indicate that alternative splicing often alters protein phosphorylatability, delimiting the scope of kinase signaling.

  10. Phylogeography of Camellia taliensis (Theaceae) inferred from chloroplast and nuclear DNA: insights into evolutionary history and conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yang; Yang, Shi-xiong; Ji, Peng-zhang; Gao, Li-zhi

    2012-06-21

    As one of the most important but seriously endangered wild relatives of the cultivated tea, Camellia taliensis harbors valuable gene resources for tea tree improvement in the future. The knowledge of genetic variation and population structure may provide insights into evolutionary history and germplasm conservation of the species. Here, we sampled 21 natural populations from the species' range in China and performed the phylogeography of C. taliensis by using the nuclear PAL gene fragment and chloroplast rpl32-trnL intergenic spacer. Levels of haplotype diversity and nucleotide diversity detected at rpl32-trnL (h = 0.841; π = 0.00314) were almost as high as at PAL (h = 0.836; π = 0.00417). Significant chloroplast DNA population subdivision was detected (GST = 0.988; NST = 0.989), suggesting fairly high genetic differentiation and low levels of recurrent gene flow through seeds among populations. Nested clade phylogeographic analysis of chlorotypes suggests that population genetic structure in C. taliensis has been affected by habitat fragmentation in the past. However, the detection of a moderate nrDNA population subdivision (GST = 0.222; NST = 0.301) provided the evidence of efficient pollen-mediated gene flow among populations and significant phylogeographical structure (NST > GST; P conservation strategies for germplasm sampling and developing in situ conservation of natural populations.

  11. EvoTol: a protein-sequence based evolutionary intolerance framework for disease-gene prioritization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rackham, Owen J L; Shihab, Hashem A; Johnson, Michael R; Petretto, Enrico

    2015-03-11

    Methods to interpret personal genome sequences are increasingly required. Here, we report a novel framework (EvoTol) to identify disease-causing genes using patient sequence data from within protein coding-regions. EvoTol quantifies a gene's intolerance to mutation using evolutionary conservation of protein sequences and can incorporate tissue-specific gene expression data. We apply this framework to the analysis of whole-exome sequence data in epilepsy and congenital heart disease, and demonstrate EvoTol's ability to identify known disease-causing genes is unmatched by competing methods. Application of EvoTol to the human interactome revealed networks enriched for genes intolerant to protein sequence variation, informing novel polygenic contributions to human disease. © The Author(s) 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  12. Evolutionary Conserved Protein Features From Analysis of Virus Shapes

    CERN Document Server

    Bozic, Anze Losdorfer; Podgornik, Rudolf

    2013-01-01

    From the shape and size analysis of approximately 130 small icosahedral viruses we conclude that there is a typical structural capsid protein, having a mean diameter of 5 nm and a mean thickness of 3 nm, with more than two thirds of the analyzed capsid proteins having thicknesses between 2 nm and 4 nm. To investigate whether, in addition to the conserved geometry, capsid proteins show similarities in the way they interact with one another, we examined the shapes of the capsids in detail. We classified them numerically according to their similarity to sphere and icosahedron and a set of shapes in between, all obtained from the theory of elasticity of shells. In order to make a unique and straightforward connection between an idealized, numerically calculated shape of an elastic shell and a capsid, we devised a special shape fitting procedure, the outcome of which is the idealized elastic shape fitting the capsid best. Using such a procedure we performed statistical analysis of a series of virus shapes and we f...

  13. Evolutionary analysis revealed the horizontal transfer of the Cyt b gene from Fungi to Chromista.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Liang-Fen; Wang, Fei; Zhang, Yu; Kuang, Hanhui; Schnabel, Guido; Li, Guo-Qing; Luo, Chao-Xi

    2014-07-01

    In this study, the cytochrome b (Cyt b) amino acid sequences were analyzed in 50 organisms covering all 5 kingdoms of eukaryotes. Six conserved domains, i.e., heme bL binding sites, heme bH binding sites, Qo binding sites, Qi binding sites, the interchain domain interface, and the intrachain domain interface were found in all investigated sequences. The topology of the phylogenetic trees was largely consistent with the well recognized taxonomic relationships, indicating that the Cyt b genes originated from a common ancestral gene before the divergence of eukaryotic kingdoms. The eukaryotic Cyt b genes likely originated from an ancient prokaryotic gene in Alphaproteobacteria based on shared conserved domains. We provide evidence that the Cyt b gene of oomycete Pseudoperonospora cubensis was horizontally transferred from a fungus in the order Hypocreales. To our knowledge, this is the first reported evidence of Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) from Fungi to Chromista involving an essential house-keeping gene. Our data suggest that HGT events must be considered when evolutionary trees are constructed only based on Cyt b genes. Additional analysis of thousands of Cyt b sequences from Genbank revealed that introns in mitochondrial Cyt b genes were acquired after the endosymbiosis of alphaproteobacteria in eukaryotic cells. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Evolutionary Relationships and Taxa-Specific Conserved Signature Indels Among Cellulases of Archaea, Bacteria, and Eukarya.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Lebin; Ram, Hari; Singh, Ved Pal

    2017-10-01

    The cellulases from different cellulolytic organisms have evolutionary relationships, which range from single-celled prokaryotes to the complex eukaryotes of the living world. This in silico analysis revealed the presence of a conserved cellulase domain along with evolutionary relationships among cellulases from several species of Archaea, Bacteria, and Eukarya. The amino acid sequences of cellulases from Archaea and Bacteria showed closer identity with their domain or phylum members that provided insights into convergent and divergent evolution of cellulases from other enzymes with different substrate specificities. Evolutionary relatedness was also observed in phylogenetic trees among a number of cellulase sequences of diverse taxa. In cellulases, propensity for alanine, glycine, leucine, serine, and threonine was high, but low for cysteine, histidine, and methionine. Catalytic aspartic acid had a higher propensity than glutamic acid, and both were involved in regular expression patterns. Characteristic group and multigroup-specific conserved signature indels located in the catalytic domains of cellulases were observed that further clarified evolutionary relationships. These indels can be distinctive molecular tools for understanding phylogeny and identification of unknown cellulolytic species of common evolutionary descent in different environments.

  15. Characterization of the avian Trojan gene family reveals contrasting evolutionary constraints.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Petar Petrov

    Full Text Available "Trojan" is a leukocyte-specific, cell surface protein originally identified in the chicken. Its molecular function has been hypothesized to be related to anti-apoptosis and the proliferation of immune cells. The Trojan gene has been localized onto the Z sex chromosome. The adjacent two genes also show significant homology to Trojan, suggesting the existence of a novel gene/protein family. Here, we characterize this Trojan family, identify homologues in other species and predict evolutionary constraints on these genes. The two Trojan-related proteins in chicken were predicted as a receptor-type tyrosine phosphatase and a transmembrane protein, bearing a cytoplasmic immuno-receptor tyrosine-based activation motif. We identified the Trojan gene family in ten other bird species and found related genes in three reptiles and a fish species. The phylogenetic analysis of the homologues revealed a gradual diversification among the family members. Evolutionary analyzes of the avian genes predicted that the extracellular regions of the proteins have been subjected to positive selection. Such selection was possibly a response to evolving interacting partners or to pathogen challenges. We also observed an almost complete lack of intracellular positively selected sites, suggesting a conserved signaling mechanism of the molecules. Therefore, the contrasting patterns of selection likely correlate with the interaction and signaling potential of the molecules.

  16. Characterization of the avian Trojan gene family reveals contrasting evolutionary constraints.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrov, Petar; Syrjänen, Riikka; Smith, Jacqueline; Gutowska, Maria Weronika; Uchida, Tatsuya; Vainio, Olli; Burt, David W

    2015-01-01

    "Trojan" is a leukocyte-specific, cell surface protein originally identified in the chicken. Its molecular function has been hypothesized to be related to anti-apoptosis and the proliferation of immune cells. The Trojan gene has been localized onto the Z sex chromosome. The adjacent two genes also show significant homology to Trojan, suggesting the existence of a novel gene/protein family. Here, we characterize this Trojan family, identify homologues in other species and predict evolutionary constraints on these genes. The two Trojan-related proteins in chicken were predicted as a receptor-type tyrosine phosphatase and a transmembrane protein, bearing a cytoplasmic immuno-receptor tyrosine-based activation motif. We identified the Trojan gene family in ten other bird species and found related genes in three reptiles and a fish species. The phylogenetic analysis of the homologues revealed a gradual diversification among the family members. Evolutionary analyzes of the avian genes predicted that the extracellular regions of the proteins have been subjected to positive selection. Such selection was possibly a response to evolving interacting partners or to pathogen challenges. We also observed an almost complete lack of intracellular positively selected sites, suggesting a conserved signaling mechanism of the molecules. Therefore, the contrasting patterns of selection likely correlate with the interaction and signaling potential of the molecules.

  17. Evolutionary Pattern and Regulation Analysis to Support Why Diversity Functions Existed within PPAR Gene Family Members.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Tianyu; Yan, Xiping; Wang, Guosong; Liu, Hehe; Gan, Xiang; Zhang, Tao; Wang, Jiwen; Li, Liang

    2015-01-01

    Peroxisome proliferators-activated receptor (PPAR) gene family members exhibit distinct patterns of distribution in tissues and differ in functions. The purpose of this study is to investigate the evolutionary impacts on diversity functions of PPAR members and the regulatory differences on gene expression patterns. 63 homology sequences of PPAR genes from 31 species were collected and analyzed. The results showed that three isolated types of PPAR gene family may emerge from twice times of gene duplication events. The conserved domains of HOLI (ligand binding domain of hormone receptors) domain and ZnF_C4 (C4 zinc finger in nuclear in hormone receptors) are essential for keeping basic roles of PPAR gene family, and the variant domains of LCRs may be responsible for their divergence in functions. The positive selection sites in HOLI domain are benefit for PPARs to evolve towards diversity functions. The evolutionary variants in the promoter regions and 3' UTR regions of PPARs result into differential transcription factors and miRNAs involved in regulating PPAR members, which may eventually affect their expressions and tissues distributions. These results indicate that gene duplication event, selection pressure on HOLI domain, and the variants on promoter and 3' UTR are essential for PPARs evolution and diversity functions acquired.

  18. Evolutionary Pattern and Regulation Analysis to Support Why Diversity Functions Existed within PPAR Gene Family Members

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tianyu Zhou

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Peroxisome proliferators-activated receptor (PPAR gene family members exhibit distinct patterns of distribution in tissues and differ in functions. The purpose of this study is to investigate the evolutionary impacts on diversity functions of PPAR members and the regulatory differences on gene expression patterns. 63 homology sequences of PPAR genes from 31 species were collected and analyzed. The results showed that three isolated types of PPAR gene family may emerge from twice times of gene duplication events. The conserved domains of HOLI (ligand binding domain of hormone receptors domain and ZnF_C4 (C4 zinc finger in nuclear in hormone receptors are essential for keeping basic roles of PPAR gene family, and the variant domains of LCRs may be responsible for their divergence in functions. The positive selection sites in HOLI domain are benefit for PPARs to evolve towards diversity functions. The evolutionary variants in the promoter regions and 3′ UTR regions of PPARs result into differential transcription factors and miRNAs involved in regulating PPAR members, which may eventually affect their expressions and tissues distributions. These results indicate that gene duplication event, selection pressure on HOLI domain, and the variants on promoter and 3′ UTR are essential for PPARs evolution and diversity functions acquired.

  19. The Drosophila surface glia transcriptome: evolutionary conserved blood-brain barrier processes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael K DeSalvo

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available AbstractCentral nervous system (CNS function is dependent on the stringent regulation of metabolites, drugs, cells, and pathogens exposed to the CNS space. Cellular blood-brain barrier (BBB structures are highly specific checkpoints governing entry and exit of all small molecules to and from the brain interstitial space, but the precise mechanisms that regulate the BBB are not well understood. In addition, the BBB has long been a challenging obstacle to the pharmacologic treatment of CNS diseases; thus model systems that can parse the functions of the BBB are highly desirable. In this study, we sought to define the transcriptome of the adult Drosophila melanogaster BBB by isolating the BBB surface glia with FACS and profiling their gene expression with microarrays. By comparing the transcriptome of these surface glia to that of all brain glia, brain neurons, and whole brains, we present a catalog of transcripts that are selectively enriched at the Drosophila BBB. We found that the fly surface glia show high expression of many ABC and SLC transporters, cell adhesion molecules, metabolic enzymes, signaling molecules, and components of xenobiotic metabolism pathways. Using gene sequence-based alignments, we compare the Drosophila and Murine BBB transcriptomes and discover many shared chemoprotective and small molecule control pathways, thus affirming the relevance of invertebrate models for studying evolutionary conserved BBB properties. The Drosophila BBB transcriptome is valuable to vertebrate and insect biologists alike as a resource for studying proteins underlying diffusion barrier development and maintenance, glial biology, and regulation of drug transport at tissue barriers.

  20. The Drosophila surface glia transcriptome: evolutionary conserved blood-brain barrier processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeSalvo, Michael K; Hindle, Samantha J; Rusan, Zeid M; Orng, Souvinh; Eddison, Mark; Halliwill, Kyle; Bainton, Roland J

    2014-01-01

    Central nervous system (CNS) function is dependent on the stringent regulation of metabolites, drugs, cells, and pathogens exposed to the CNS space. Cellular blood-brain barrier (BBB) structures are highly specific checkpoints governing entry and exit of all small molecules to and from the brain interstitial space, but the precise mechanisms that regulate the BBB are not well understood. In addition, the BBB has long been a challenging obstacle to the pharmacologic treatment of CNS diseases; thus model systems that can parse the functions of the BBB are highly desirable. In this study, we sought to define the transcriptome of the adult Drosophila melanogaster BBB by isolating the BBB surface glia with fluorescence activated cell sorting (FACS) and profiling their gene expression with microarrays. By comparing the transcriptome of these surface glia to that of all brain glia, brain neurons, and whole brains, we present a catalog of transcripts that are selectively enriched at the Drosophila BBB. We found that the fly surface glia show high expression of many ATP-binding cassette (ABC) and solute carrier (SLC) transporters, cell adhesion molecules, metabolic enzymes, signaling molecules, and components of xenobiotic metabolism pathways. Using gene sequence-based alignments, we compare the Drosophila and Murine BBB transcriptomes and discover many shared chemoprotective and small molecule control pathways, thus affirming the relevance of invertebrate models for studying evolutionary conserved BBB properties. The Drosophila BBB transcriptome is valuable to vertebrate and insect biologists alike as a resource for studying proteins underlying diffusion barrier development and maintenance, glial biology, and regulation of drug transport at tissue barriers.

  1. Polycomb repressive complex's evolutionary conserved function: the role of EZH2 status and cellular background.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gall Trošelj, Koraljka; Novak Kujundzic, Renata; Ugarkovic, Djurdjica

    2016-01-01

    When assembled in multiprotein polycomb repressive complexes (PRCs), highly evolutionary conserved polycomb group (PcG) proteins epigenetically control gene activity. Although the composition of PRCs may vary considerably, it is well established that the embryonic ectoderm development (EED) 1, suppressor of zeste (SUZ) 12, and methyltransferase enhancer of zeste (EZH2)-containing complex, PRC2, which is abundant in highly proliferative cells (including cancer cells), establishes a repressive methylation mark on histone 3 (H3K27me3). From the perspective of molecular cancer pathogenesis, this effect, when directed towards a promoter of tumor suppressor genes, represents pro-tumorigenic effect. This mode of action was shown in several cancer models. However, EZH2 function extends beyond this scenario. The highly specific cellular background, related to the origin of cell and numerous external stimuli during a given time-window, may be the trigger for EZH2 interaction with other proteins, not necessarily histones. This is particularly relevant for cancer. This review provides a critical overview of the evolutional importance of PRC and discusses several important aspects of EZH2 functioning within PRC. The review also deals with mutational studies on EZH2. Due to the existence of several protein (and messenger RNA (mRNA)) isoforms, these mutations were stratified, using the protein sequence which is considered canonical. This approach showed that there is an urgent need for the uniformed positioning of currently known EZH2 mutations (somatic-in tumors, as well as germline mutations in the Weaver's syndrome). Finally, we discuss EZH2 function with respect to amount of trimethylated H3K27, in a specific cellular milieu, through presenting the most recent data related to EZH2-H3K27m3 relationship in cancer. All these points are significant in considering EZH2 as a therapeutic target.

  2. Unifying the genomics-based classes of cancer fusion gene partners: large cancer fusion genes are evolutionarily conserved.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pava, Libia M; Morton, Daniel T; Chen, Ren; Blanck, George

    2012-11-01

    Genes that fuse to cause cancer have been studied to determine molecular bases for proliferation, to develop diagnostic tools, and as targets for drugs. To facilitate identification of additional, cancer fusion genes, following observation of a chromosomal translocation, we have characterized the genomic features of the fusion gene partners. Previous work indicated that cancer fusion gene partners, are either large or evolutionarily conserved in comparison to the neighboring genes in the region of a chromosomal translocation. These results raised the question of whether large cancer fusion gene partners were also evolutionarily conserved. We developed two methods for quantifying evolutionary conservation values, allowing the conclusion that both large and small cancer fusion gene partners are more evolutionarily conserved than their neighbors. Additionally, we determined that cancer fusion gene partners have more 3' untranslated region secondary structures than do their neighbors. Coupled with previous algorithms, with or without transcriptome approaches, we expect these results to assist in the rapid and efficient use of chromosomal translocations to identify cancer fusion genes. The above parameters for any gene of interest can be accessed at www.cancerfusiongenes.com.

  3. ECRbase: Database of Evolutionary Conserved Regions, Promoters, and Transcription Factor Binding Sites in Vertebrate Genomes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Loots, G; Ovcharenko, I

    2006-08-08

    Evolutionary conservation of DNA sequences provides a tool for the identification of functional elements in genomes. We have created a database of evolutionary conserved regions (ECRs) in vertebrate genomes entitled ECRbase that is constructed from a collection of pairwise vertebrate genome alignments produced by the ECR Browser database. ECRbase features a database of syntenic blocks that recapitulate the evolution of rearrangements in vertebrates and a collection of promoters in all vertebrate genomes presented in the database. The database also contains a collection of annotated transcription factor binding sites (TFBS) in all ECRs and promoter elements. ECRbase currently includes human, rhesus macaque, dog, opossum, rat, mouse, chicken, frog, zebrafish, and two pufferfish genomes. It is freely accessible at http://ECRbase.dcode.org.

  4. Genes from scratch – the evolutionary fate of de novo genes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlötterer, Christian

    2015-01-01

    Although considered an extremely unlikely event, many genes emerge from previously noncoding genomic regions. This review covers the entire life cycle of such de novo genes. Two competing hypotheses about the process of de novo gene birth are discussed as well as the high death rate of de novo genes. Despite the high death rate, some de novo genes are retained and remain functional, even in distantly related species, through their integration into gene networks. Further studies combining gene expression with ribosome profiling in multiple populations across different species will be instrumental for an improved understanding of the evolutionary processes operating on de novo genes. PMID:25773713

  5. Comparison of evolutionary algorithms in gene regulatory network model inference.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    2010-01-01

    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: The evolution of high throughput technologies that measure gene expression levels has created a data base for inferring GRNs (a process also known as reverse engineering of GRNs). However, the nature of these data has made this process very difficult. At the moment, several methods of discovering qualitative causal relationships between genes with high accuracy from microarray data exist, but large scale quantitative analysis on real biological datasets cannot be performed, to date, as existing approaches are not suitable for real microarray data which are noisy and insufficient. RESULTS: This paper performs an analysis of several existing evolutionary algorithms for quantitative gene regulatory network modelling. The aim is to present the techniques used and offer a comprehensive comparison of approaches, under a common framework. Algorithms are applied to both synthetic and real gene expression data from DNA microarrays, and ability to reproduce biological behaviour, scalability and robustness to noise are assessed and compared. CONCLUSIONS: Presented is a comparison framework for assessment of evolutionary algorithms, used to infer gene regulatory networks. Promising methods are identified and a platform for development of appropriate model formalisms is established.

  6. Phylogeography of Camellia taliensis (Theaceae inferred from chloroplast and nuclear DNA: insights into evolutionary history and conservation

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    Liu Yang

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background As one of the most important but seriously endangered wild relatives of the cultivated tea, Camellia taliensis harbors valuable gene resources for tea tree improvement in the future. The knowledge of genetic variation and population structure may provide insights into evolutionary history and germplasm conservation of the species. Results Here, we sampled 21 natural populations from the species' range in China and performed the phylogeography of C. taliensis by using the nuclear PAL gene fragment and chloroplast rpl32-trnL intergenic spacer. Levels of haplotype diversity and nucleotide diversity detected at rpl32-trnL (h = 0.841; π = 0.00314 were almost as high as at PAL (h = 0.836; π = 0.00417. Significant chloroplast DNA population subdivision was detected (GST = 0.988; NST = 0.989, suggesting fairly high genetic differentiation and low levels of recurrent gene flow through seeds among populations. Nested clade phylogeographic analysis of chlorotypes suggests that population genetic structure in C. taliensis has been affected by habitat fragmentation in the past. However, the detection of a moderate nrDNA population subdivision (GST = 0.222; NST = 0.301 provided the evidence of efficient pollen-mediated gene flow among populations and significant phylogeographical structure (NST > GST; P PAL haplotypes indicates that phylogeographical pattern of nrDNA haplotypes might be caused by restricted gene flow with isolation by distance, which was also supported by Mantel’s test of nrDNA haplotypes (r = 0.234, P  Conclusions We found that C. taliensis showed fairly high genetic differentiation resulting from restricted gene flow and habitat fragmentation. This phylogeographical study gives us deep insights into population structure of the species and conservation strategies for germplasm sampling and developing in situ conservation of natural populations.

  7. Conserved Gene Expression Programs in Developing Roots from Diverse Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Ling; Schiefelbein, John

    2015-08-01

    The molecular basis for the origin and diversification of morphological adaptations is a central issue in evolutionary developmental biology. Here, we defined temporal transcript accumulation in developing roots from seven vascular plants, permitting a genome-wide comparative analysis of the molecular programs used by a single organ across diverse species. The resulting gene expression maps uncover significant similarity in the genes employed in roots and their developmental expression profiles. The detailed analysis of a subset of 133 genes known to be associated with root development in Arabidopsis thaliana indicates that most of these are used in all plant species. Strikingly, this was also true for root development in a lycophyte (Selaginella moellendorffii), which forms morphologically different roots and is thought to have evolved roots independently. Thus, despite vast differences in size and anatomy of roots from diverse plants, the basic molecular mechanisms employed during root formation appear to be conserved. This suggests that roots evolved in the two major vascular plant lineages either by parallel recruitment of largely the same developmental program or by elaboration of an existing root program in the common ancestor of vascular plants. © 2015 American Society of Plant Biologists. All rights reserved.

  8. Genome-wide identification, characterization, and evolutionary analysis of flowering genes in radish (Raphanus sativus L.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jinglei; Qiu, Yang; Cheng, Feng; Chen, Xiaohua; Zhang, Xiaohui; Wang, Haiping; Song, Jiangping; Duan, Mengmeng; Yang, Haohui; Li, Xixiang

    2017-12-19

    Radish (Raphanus sativus L.) belongs to the family Brassicaceae, and is an economically important root crop grown worldwide. Flowering is necessary for plant propagation, but it is also an important agronomic trait influencing R. sativus fleshy taproot yield and quality in the case of an imbalance between vegetative and reproductive growth. There is currently a lack of detailed information regarding the pathways regulating the flowering genes or their evolution in R. sativus. The release of the R. sativus genome sequence provides an opportunity to identify and characterize the flowering genes using a comparative genomics approach. We identified 254 R. sativus flowering genes based on sequence similarities and analyses of syntenic regions. The genes were unevenly distributed on the various chromosomes. Furthermore, we discovered the existence of R. sativus core function genes in the flowering regulatory network, which revealed that basic flowering pathways are relatively conserved between Arabidopsis thaliana and R. sativus. Additional comparisons with Brassica oleracea and Brassica rapa indicated that the retained flowering genes differed among species after genome triplication events. The R. sativus flowering genes were preferentially retained, especially those associated with gibberellin signaling and metabolism. Moreover, analyses of selection pressures suggested that the genes in vernalization and autonomous pathways were more variable than the genes in other R. sativus flowering pathways. Our results revealed that the core flowering genes are conserved between R. sativus and A. thaliana to a certain extent. Moreover, the copy number variation and functional differentiation of the homologous genes in R. sativus increased the complexity of the flowering regulatory networks after genome polyploidization. Our study provides an integrated framework for the R. sativus flowering pathways and insights into the evolutionary relationships between R. sativus flowering

  9. Evolutionary genomics of plant genes encoding N-terminal-TM-C2 domain proteins and the similar FAM62 genes and synaptotagmin genes of metazoans

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    Craxton Molly

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Synaptotagmin genes are found in animal genomes and are known to function in the nervous system. Genes with a similar domain architecture as well as sequence similarity to synaptotagmin C2 domains have also been found in plant genomes. The plant genes share an additional region of sequence similarity with a group of animal genes named FAM62. FAM62 genes also have a similar domain architecture. Little is known about the functions of the plant genes and animal FAM62 genes. Indeed, many members of the large and diverse Syt gene family await functional characterization. Understanding the evolutionary relationships among these genes will help to realize the full implications of functional studies and lead to improved genome annotation. Results I collected and compared plant Syt-like sequences from the primary nucleotide sequence databases at NCBI. The collection comprises six groups of plant genes conserved in embryophytes: NTMC2Type1 to NTMC2Type6. I collected and compared metazoan FAM62 sequences and identified some similar sequences from other eukaryotic lineages. I found evidence of RNA editing and alternative splicing. I compared the intron patterns of Syt genes. I also compared Rabphilin and Doc2 genes. Conclusion Genes encoding proteins with N-terminal-transmembrane-C2 domain architectures resembling synaptotagmins, are widespread in eukaryotes. A collection of these genes is presented here. The collection provides a resource for studies of intron evolution. I have classified the collection into homologous gene families according to distinctive patterns of sequence conservation and intron position. The evolutionary histories of these gene families are traceable through the appearance of family members in different eukaryotic lineages. Assuming an intron-rich eukaryotic ancestor, the conserved intron patterns distinctive of individual gene families, indicate independent origins of Syt, FAM62 and NTMC2 genes. Resemblances

  10. Impact of gene family evolutionary histories on phylogenetic species tree inference by gene tree parsimony.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Tao

    2016-03-01

    Complicated history of gene duplication and loss brings challenge to molecular phylogenetic inference, especially in deep phylogenies. However, phylogenomic approaches, such as gene tree parsimony (GTP), show advantage over some other approaches in its ability to use gene families with duplications. GTP searches the 'optimal' species tree by minimizing the total cost of biological events such as duplications, but accuracy of GTP and phylogenetic signal in the context of different gene families with distinct histories of duplication and loss are unclear. To evaluate how different evolutionary properties of different gene families can impact on species tree inference, 3900 gene families from seven angiosperms encompassing a wide range of gene content, lineage-specific expansions and contractions were analyzed. It was found that the gene content and total duplication number in a gene family strongly influence species tree inference accuracy, with the highest accuracy achieved at either very low or very high gene content (or duplication number) and lowest accuracy centered in intermediate gene content (or duplication number), as the relationship can fit a binomial regression. Besides, for gene families of similar level of average gene content, those with relatively higher lineage-specific expansion or duplication rates tend to show lower accuracy. Additional correlation tests support that high accuracy for those gene families with large gene content may rely on abundant ancestral copies to provide many subtrees to resolve conflicts, whereas high accuracy for single or low copy gene families are just subject to sequence substitution per se. Very low accuracy reached by gene families of intermediate gene content or duplication number can be due to insufficient subtrees to resolve the conflicts from loss of alternative copies. As these evolutionary properties can significantly influence species tree accuracy, I discussed the potential weighting of the duplication cost by

  11. From mouse to human: evolutionary genomics analysis of human orthologs of essential genes.

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    Benjamin Georgi

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the core set of genes that are necessary for basic developmental functions is one of the central goals in biology. Studies in model organisms identified a significant fraction of essential genes through the analysis of null-mutations that lead to lethality. Recent large-scale next-generation sequencing efforts have provided unprecedented data on genetic variation in human. However, evolutionary and genomic characteristics of human essential genes have never been directly studied on a genome-wide scale. Here we use detailed phenotypic resources available for the mouse and deep genomics sequencing data from human populations to characterize patterns of genetic variation and mutational burden in a set of 2,472 human orthologs of known essential genes in the mouse. Consistent with the action of strong, purifying selection, these genes exhibit comparatively reduced levels of sequence variation, skew in allele frequency towards more rare, and exhibit increased conservation across the primate and rodent lineages relative to the remainder of genes in the genome. In individual genomes we observed ~12 rare mutations within essential genes predicted to be damaging. Consistent with the hypothesis that mutations in essential genes are risk factors for neurodevelopmental disease, we show that de novo variants in patients with Autism Spectrum Disorder are more likely to occur in this collection of genes. While incomplete, our set of human orthologs shows characteristics fully consistent with essential function in human and thus provides a resource to inform and facilitate interpretation of sequence data in studies of human disease.

  12. Spatial multiobjective optimization of agricultural conservation practices using a SWAT model and an evolutionary algorithm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabotyagov, Sergey; Campbell, Todd; Valcu, Adriana; Gassman, Philip; Jha, Manoj; Schilling, Keith; Wolter, Calvin; Kling, Catherine

    2012-12-09

    Finding the cost-efficient (i.e., lowest-cost) ways of targeting conservation practice investments for the achievement of specific water quality goals across the landscape is of primary importance in watershed management. Traditional economics methods of finding the lowest-cost solution in the watershed context (e.g.,(5,12,20)) assume that off-site impacts can be accurately described as a proportion of on-site pollution generated. Such approaches are unlikely to be representative of the actual pollution process in a watershed, where the impacts of polluting sources are often determined by complex biophysical processes. The use of modern physically-based, spatially distributed hydrologic simulation models allows for a greater degree of realism in terms of process representation but requires a development of a simulation-optimization framework where the model becomes an integral part of optimization. Evolutionary algorithms appear to be a particularly useful optimization tool, able to deal with the combinatorial nature of a watershed simulation-optimization problem and allowing the use of the full water quality model. Evolutionary algorithms treat a particular spatial allocation of conservation practices in a watershed as a candidate solution and utilize sets (populations) of candidate solutions iteratively applying stochastic operators of selection, recombination, and mutation to find improvements with respect to the optimization objectives. The optimization objectives in this case are to minimize nonpoint-source pollution in the watershed, simultaneously minimizing the cost of conservation practices. A recent and expanding set of research is attempting to use similar methods and integrates water quality models with broadly defined evolutionary optimization methods(3,4,9,10,13-15,17-19,22,23,25). In this application, we demonstrate a program which follows Rabotyagov et al.'s approach and integrates a modern and commonly used SWAT water quality model(7) with a

  13. Wildlife conservation and animal temperament: causes and consequences of evolutionary change for captive, reintroduced, and wild populations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    McDougall, P.T.; Réale, D.; Sol, D.; Reader, S.M.

    2006-01-01

    We argue that animal temperament is an important concept for wildlife conservation science and review causes and consequences of evolutionary changes in temperament traits that may occur in captive-breeding programmes. An evolutionary perspective is valid because temperament traits are heritable,

  14. Evolutionary mirages: selection on binding site composition creates the illusion of conserved grammars in Drosophila enhancers.

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    Richard W Lusk

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available The clustering of transcription factor binding sites in developmental enhancers and the apparent preferential conservation of clustered sites have been widely interpreted as proof that spatially constrained physical interactions between transcription factors are required for regulatory function. However, we show here that selection on the composition of enhancers alone, and not their internal structure, leads to the accumulation of clustered sites with evolutionary dynamics that suggest they are preferentially conserved. We simulated the evolution of idealized enhancers from Drosophila melanogaster constrained to contain only a minimum number of binding sites for one or more factors. Under this constraint, mutations that destroy an existing binding site are tolerated only if a compensating site has emerged elsewhere in the enhancer. Overlapping sites, such as those frequently observed for the activator Bicoid and repressor Krüppel, had significantly longer evolutionary half-lives than isolated sites for the same factors. This leads to a substantially higher density of overlapping sites than expected by chance and the appearance that such sites are preferentially conserved. Because D. melanogaster (like many other species has a bias for deletions over insertions, sites tended to become closer together over time, leading to an overall clustering of sites in the absence of any selection for clustered sites. Since this effect is strongest for the oldest sites, clustered sites also incorrectly appear to be preferentially conserved. Following speciation, sites tend to be closer together in all descendent species than in their common ancestors, violating the common assumption that shared features of species' genomes reflect their ancestral state. Finally, we show that selection on binding site composition alone recapitulates the observed number of overlapping and closely neighboring sites in real D. melanogaster enhancers. Thus, this study calls into

  15. Evolutionary maintenance of filovirus-like genes in bat genomes

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    Taylor Derek J

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Little is known of the biological significance and evolutionary maintenance of integrated non-retroviral RNA virus genes in eukaryotic host genomes. Here, we isolated novel filovirus-like genes from bat genomes and tested for evolutionary maintenance. We also estimated the age of filovirus VP35-like gene integrations and tested the phylogenetic hypotheses that there is a eutherian mammal clade and a marsupial/ebolavirus/Marburgvirus dichotomy for filoviruses. Results We detected homologous copies of VP35-like and NP-like gene integrations in both Old World and New World species of Myotis (bats. We also detected previously unknown VP35-like genes in rodents that are positionally homologous. Comprehensive phylogenetic estimates for filovirus NP-like and VP35-like loci support two main clades with a marsupial and a rodent grouping within the ebolavirus/Lloviu virus/Marburgvirus clade. The concordance of VP35-like, NP-like and mitochondrial gene trees with the expected species tree supports the notion that the copies we examined are orthologs that predate the global spread and radiation of the genus Myotis. Parametric simulations were consistent with selective maintenance for the open reading frame (ORF of VP35-like genes in Myotis. The ORF of the filovirus-like VP35 gene has been maintained in bat genomes for an estimated 13. 4 MY. ORFs were disrupted for the NP-like genes in Myotis. Likelihood ratio tests revealed that a model that accommodates positive selection is a significantly better fit to the data than a model that does not allow for positive selection for VP35-like sequences. Moreover, site-by-site analysis of selection using two methods indicated at least 25 sites in the VP35-like alignment are under positive selection in Myotis. Conclusions Our results indicate that filovirus-like elements have significance beyond genomic imprints of prior infection. That is, there appears to be, or have been, functionally maintained

  16. Evolutionary Stasis in Cycad Plastomes and the First Case of Plastome GC-Biased Gene Conversion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Chung-Shien; Chaw, Shu-Miaw

    2015-06-27

    In angiosperms, gene conversion has been known to reduce the mutational load of plastid genomes (the plastomes). Particularly, more frequent gene conversions in inverted repeat (IR) than in single copy (SC) regions result in contrasting substitution rates between these two regions. However, little has been known about the effect of gene conversion in the evolution of gymnosperm plastomes. Cycads (Cycadophyta) are the second largest gymnosperm group. Evolutionary study of their plastomes is limited to the basal cycad genus, Cycas. In this study, we addressed three questions. 1) Do the plastomes of other cycad genera evolve slowly as previously observed in the plastome of Cycas taitungensis? 2) Do substitution rates differ between their SC and IR regions? And 3) Does gene conversion occur in the cycad plastomes? If yes, is it AT-biased or GC-biased? Plastomes of eight species from other eight genera of cycads were sequenced. These plastomes are highly conserved in genome organization. Excluding ginkgo, cycad plastomes have significantly lower synonymous and nonsynonymous substitution rates than other gymnosperms, reflecting their evolutionary stasis in nucleotide mutations. In the IRs of cycad plastomes, the reduced substitution rates and GC-biased mutations are associated with a GC-biased gene conversion (gBGC) mechanism. Further investigations suggest that in cycads, gBGC is able to rectify plastome-wide mutations. Therefore, this study is the first to uncover the plastomic gBGC in seed plants. We also propose a gBGC model to interpret the dissimilar evolutionary patterns as well as the compositionally biased mutations in the SC and IR regions of cycad plastomes. © The Author(s) 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  17. The constancy of gene conservation across divergent bacterial orders

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    Ackermann Martin

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Orthologous genes are frequently presumed to perform similar functions. However, outside of model organisms, this is rarely tested. One means of inferring changes in function is if there are changes in the level of gene conservation and selective constraint. Here we compare levels of gene conservation across three bacterial groups to test for changes in gene functionality. Findings The level of gene conservation for different orthologous genes is highly correlated across clades, even for highly divergent groups of bacteria. These correlations do not arise from broad differences in gene functionality (e.g. informational genes vs. metabolic genes, but instead seem to result from very specific differences in gene function. Furthermore, these functional differences appear to be maintained over very long periods of time. Conclusion These results suggest that even over broad time scales, most bacterial genes are under a nearly constant level of purifying selection, and that bacterial evolution is thus dominated by selective and functional stasis.

  18. Evolutionary dynamics of human autoimmune disease genes and malfunctioned immunological genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Podder Soumita

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background One of the main issues of molecular evolution is to divulge the principles in dictating the evolutionary rate differences among various gene classes. Immunological genes have received considerable attention in evolutionary biology as candidates for local adaptation and for studying functionally important polymorphisms. The normal structure and function of immunological genes will be distorted when they experience mutations leading to immunological dysfunctions. Results Here, we examined the fundamental differences between the genes which on mutation give rise to autoimmune or other immune system related diseases and the immunological genes that do not cause any disease phenotypes. Although the disease genes examined are analogous to non-disease genes in product, expression, function, and pathway affiliation, a statistically significant decrease in evolutionary rate has been found in autoimmune disease genes relative to all other immune related diseases and non-disease genes. Possible ways of accumulation of mutation in the three steps of the central dogma (DNA-mRNA-Protein have been studied to trace the mutational effects predisposed to disease consequence and acquiring higher selection pressure. Principal Component Analysis and Multivariate Regression Analysis have established the predominant role of single nucleotide polymorphisms in guiding the evolutionary rate of immunological disease and non-disease genes followed by m-RNA abundance, paralogs number, fraction of phosphorylation residue, alternatively spliced exon, protein residue burial and protein disorder. Conclusions Our study provides an empirical insight into the etiology of autoimmune disease genes and other immunological diseases. The immediate utility of our study is to help in disease gene identification and may also help in medicinal improvement of immune related disease.

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

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    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. Phylogenetic distribution and evolutionary dynamics of the sex determination genes doublesex and transformer in insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geuverink, E; Beukeboom, L W

    2014-01-01

    Sex determination in insects is characterized by a gene cascade that is conserved at the bottom but contains diverse primary signals at the top. The bottom master switch gene doublesex is found in all insects. Its upstream regulator transformer is present in the orders Hymenoptera, Coleoptera and Diptera, but has thus far not been found in Lepidoptera and in the basal lineages of Diptera. transformer is presumed to be ancestral to the holometabolous insects based on its shared domains and conserved features of autoregulation and sex-specific splicing. We interpret that its absence in basal lineages of Diptera and its order-specific conserved domains indicate multiple independent losses or recruitments into the sex determination cascade. Duplications of transformer are found in derived families within the Hymenoptera, characterized by their complementary sex determination mechanism. As duplications are not found in any other insect order, they appear linked to the haplodiploid reproduction of the Hymenoptera. Further phylogenetic analyses combined with functional studies are needed to understand the evolutionary history of the transformer gene among insects. © 2013 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  1. Evolutionary conservation of P-selectin glycoprotein ligand-1 primary structure and function

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    Schapira Marc

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background P-selectin glycoprotein ligand-1 (PSGL-1 plays a critical role in recruiting leukocytes in inflammatory lesions by mediating leukocyte rolling on selectins. Core-2 O-glycosylation of a N-terminal threonine and sulfation of at least one tyrosine residue of PSGL-1 are required for L- and P-selectin binding. Little information is available on the intra- and inter-species evolution of PSGL-1 primary structure. In addition, the evolutionary conservation of selectin binding site on PSGL-1 has not been previously examined in detail. Therefore, we performed multiple sequence alignment of PSGL-1 amino acid sequences of 14 mammals (human, chimpanzee, rhesus monkey, bovine, pig, rat, tree-shrew, bushbaby, mouse, bat, horse, cat, sheep and dog and examined mammalian PSGL-1 interactions with human selectins. Results A signal peptide was predicted in each sequence and a propeptide cleavage site was found in 9/14 species. PSGL-1 N-terminus is poorly conserved. However, each species exhibits at least one tyrosine sulfation site and, except in horse and dog, a T [D/E]PP [D/E] motif associated to the core-2 O-glycosylation of a N-terminal threonine. A mucin-like domain of 250–280 amino acids long was disclosed in all studied species. It lies between the conserved N-terminal O-glycosylated threonine (Thr-57 in human and the transmembrane domain, and contains a central region exhibiting a variable number of decameric repeats (DR. Interspecies and intraspecies polymorphisms were observed. Transmembrane and cytoplasmic domain sequences are well conserved. The moesin binding residues that serve as adaptor between PSGL-1 and Syk, and are involved in regulating PSGL-1-dependent rolling on P-selectin are perfectly conserved in all analyzed mammalian sequences. Despite a poor conservation of PSGL-1 N-terminal sequence, CHO cells co-expressing human glycosyltransferases and human, bovine, pig or rat PSGL-1 efficiently rolled on human L- or P

  2. Masking residues using context-specific evolutionary conservation significantly improves short linear motif discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davey, Norman E; Shields, Denis C; Edwards, Richard J

    2009-02-15

    Short linear motifs (SLiMs) are important mediators of protein-protein interactions. Their short and degenerate nature presents a challenge for computational discovery. We sought to improve SLiM discovery by incorporating evolutionary information, since SLiMs are more conserved than surrounding residues. We have developed a new method that assesses the evolutionary signal of a residue in its sequence and structural context. Under-conserved residues are masked out prior to SLiM discovery, allowing incorporation into the existing statistical model employed by SLiMFinder. The method shows considerable robustness in terms of both the conservation score used for individual residues and the size of the sequence neighbourhood. Optimal parameters significantly improve return of known functional motifs from benchmarking data, raising the return of significant validated SLiMs from typical human interaction datasets from 20% to 60%, while retaining the high level of stringency needed for application to real biological data. The success of this regime indicates that it could be of general benefit to computational annotation and prediction of protein function at the sequence level. All data and tools in this article are available at http://bioware.ucd.ie/~slimdisc/slimfinder/conmasking/.

  3. Evolutionary Analysis of Minor Histocompatibility Genes In Hydra

    KAUST Repository

    Aalismail, Nojood

    2016-05-01

    Hydra is a simple freshwater solitary polyp used as a model system to study evolutionary aspects. The immune response of this organism has not been studied extensively and the immune response genes have not been identified and characterized. On the other hand, immune response has been investigated and genetic analysis has been initiated in other lower invertebrates. In the present study we took initiative to study the self/nonself recognition in hydra and its relation to the immune response. Moreover, performing phylogenetic analysis to look for annotated immune genes in hydra gave us a potential to analyze the expression of minor histocompatibility genes that have been shown to play a major role in grafting and transplantation in mammals. Here we obtained the cDNA library that shows expression of minor histocompatibility genes and confirmed that the annotated sequences in databases are actually present. In addition, grafting experiments suggested, although still preliminary, that homograft showed less rejection response than in heterograft. Involvement of possible minor histocompatibility gene orthologous in immune response was examined by qPCR.

  4. Spt-Ada-Gcn5-Acetyltransferase (SAGA Complex in Plants: Genome Wide Identification, Evolutionary Conservation and Functional Determination.

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    Rakesh Srivastava

    Full Text Available The recruitment of RNA polymerase II on a promoter is assisted by the assembly of basal transcriptional machinery in eukaryotes. The Spt-Ada-Gcn5-Acetyltransferase (SAGA complex plays an important role in transcription regulation in eukaryotes. However, even in the advent of genome sequencing of various plants, SAGA complex has been poorly defined for their components and roles in plant development and physiological functions. Computational analysis of Arabidopsis thaliana and Oryza sativa genomes for SAGA complex resulted in the identification of 17 to 18 potential candidates for SAGA subunits. We have further classified the SAGA complex based on the conserved domains. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that the SAGA complex proteins are evolutionary conserved between plants, yeast and mammals. Functional annotation showed that they participate not only in chromatin remodeling and gene regulation, but also in different biological processes, which could be indirect and possibly mediated via the regulation of gene expression. The in silico expression analysis of the SAGA components in Arabidopsis and O. sativa clearly indicates that its components have a distinct expression profile at different developmental stages. The co-expression analysis of the SAGA components suggests that many of these subunits co-express at different developmental stages, during hormonal interaction and in response to stress conditions. Quantitative real-time PCR analysis of SAGA component genes further confirmed their expression in different plant tissues and stresses. The expression of representative salt, heat and light inducible genes were affected in mutant lines of SAGA subunits in Arabidopsis. Altogether, the present study reveals expedient evidences of involvement of the SAGA complex in plant gene regulation and stress responses.

  5. Cross-species genome-wide identification of evolutionary conserved microproteins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Straub, Daniel; Wenkel, Stephan

    2017-01-01

    Protein concept beyond transcription factors to other protein families. Here, we reveal potential microProtein candidates in several plant and animal reference genomes. A large number of these microProteins are species-specific while others evolved early and are evolutionary highly conserved. Most known micro......MicroProteins are small single-domain proteins that act by engaging their targets into different, sometimes nonproductive protein complexes. In order to identify novel microProteins in any sequenced genome of interest, we have developed miPFinder, a program that identifies and classifies potential...

  6. Early Developmental and Evolutionary Origins of Gene Body DNA Methylation Patterns in Mammalian Placentas.

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    Diane I Schroeder

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Over the last 20-80 million years the mammalian placenta has taken on a variety of morphologies through both divergent and convergent evolution. Recently we have shown that the human placenta genome has a unique epigenetic pattern of large partially methylated domains (PMDs and highly methylated domains (HMDs with gene body DNA methylation positively correlating with level of gene expression. In order to determine the evolutionary conservation of DNA methylation patterns and transcriptional regulatory programs in the placenta, we performed a genome-wide methylome (MethylC-seq analysis of human, rhesus macaque, squirrel monkey, mouse, dog, horse, and cow placentas as well as opossum extraembryonic membrane. We found that, similar to human placenta, mammalian placentas and opossum extraembryonic membrane have globally lower levels of methylation compared to somatic tissues. Higher relative gene body methylation was the conserved feature across all mammalian placentas, despite differences in PMD/HMDs and absolute methylation levels. Specifically, higher methylation over the bodies of genes involved in mitosis, vesicle-mediated transport, protein phosphorylation, and chromatin modification was observed compared with the rest of the genome. As in human placenta, higher methylation is associated with higher gene expression and is predictive of genic location across species. Analysis of DNA methylation in oocytes and preimplantation embryos shows a conserved pattern of gene body methylation similar to the placenta. Intriguingly, mouse and cow oocytes and mouse early embryos have PMD/HMDs but their placentas do not, suggesting that PMD/HMDs are a feature of early preimplantation methylation patterns that become lost during placental development in some species and following implantation of the embryo.

  7. Early Developmental and Evolutionary Origins of Gene Body DNA Methylation Patterns in Mammalian Placentas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schroeder, Diane I; Jayashankar, Kartika; Douglas, Kory C; Thirkill, Twanda L; York, Daniel; Dickinson, Pete J; Williams, Lawrence E; Samollow, Paul B; Ross, Pablo J; Bannasch, Danika L; Douglas, Gordon C; LaSalle, Janine M

    2015-08-01

    Over the last 20-80 million years the mammalian placenta has taken on a variety of morphologies through both divergent and convergent evolution. Recently we have shown that the human placenta genome has a unique epigenetic pattern of large partially methylated domains (PMDs) and highly methylated domains (HMDs) with gene body DNA methylation positively correlating with level of gene expression. In order to determine the evolutionary conservation of DNA methylation patterns and transcriptional regulatory programs in the placenta, we performed a genome-wide methylome (MethylC-seq) analysis of human, rhesus macaque, squirrel monkey, mouse, dog, horse, and cow placentas as well as opossum extraembryonic membrane. We found that, similar to human placenta, mammalian placentas and opossum extraembryonic membrane have globally lower levels of methylation compared to somatic tissues. Higher relative gene body methylation was the conserved feature across all mammalian placentas, despite differences in PMD/HMDs and absolute methylation levels. Specifically, higher methylation over the bodies of genes involved in mitosis, vesicle-mediated transport, protein phosphorylation, and chromatin modification was observed compared with the rest of the genome. As in human placenta, higher methylation is associated with higher gene expression and is predictive of genic location across species. Analysis of DNA methylation in oocytes and preimplantation embryos shows a conserved pattern of gene body methylation similar to the placenta. Intriguingly, mouse and cow oocytes and mouse early embryos have PMD/HMDs but their placentas do not, suggesting that PMD/HMDs are a feature of early preimplantation methylation patterns that become lost during placental development in some species and following implantation of the embryo.

  8. Clusters of orthologous genes for 41 archaeal genomes and implications for evolutionary genomics of archaea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makarova, Kira S; Sorokin, Alexander V; Novichkov, Pavel S; Wolf, Yuri I; Koonin, Eugene V

    2007-01-01

    Background An evolutionary classification of genes from sequenced genomes that distinguishes between orthologs and paralogs is indispensable for genome annotation and evolutionary reconstruction. Shortly after multiple genome sequences of bacteria, archaea, and unicellular eukaryotes became available, an attempt on such a classification was implemented in Clusters of Orthologous Groups of proteins (COGs). Rapid accumulation of genome sequences creates opportunities for refining COGs but also represents a challenge because of error amplification. One of the practical strategies involves construction of refined COGs for phylogenetically compact subsets of genomes. Results New Archaeal Clusters of Orthologous Genes (arCOGs) were constructed for 41 archaeal genomes (13 Crenarchaeota, 27 Euryarchaeota and one Nanoarchaeon) using an improved procedure that employs a similarity tree between smaller, group-specific clusters, semi-automatically partitions orthology domains in multidomain proteins, and uses profile searches for identification of remote orthologs. The annotation of arCOGs is a consensus between three assignments based on the COGs, the CDD database, and the annotations of homologs in the NR database. The 7538 arCOGs, on average, cover ~88% of the genes in a genome compared to a ~76% coverage in COGs. The finer granularity of ortholog identification in the arCOGs is apparent from the fact that 4538 arCOGs correspond to 2362 COGs; ~40% of the arCOGs are new. The archaeal gene core (protein-coding genes found in all 41 genome) consists of 166 arCOGs. The arCOGs were used to reconstruct gene loss and gene gain events during archaeal evolution and gene sets of ancestral forms. The Last Archaeal Common Ancestor (LACA) is conservatively estimated to possess 996 genes compared to 1245 and 1335 genes for the last common ancestors of Crenarchaeota and Euryarchaeota, respectively. It is inferred that LACA was a chemoautotrophic hyperthermophile that, in addition to the

  9. Clusters of orthologous genes for 41 archaeal genomes and implications for evolutionary genomics of archaea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wolf Yuri I

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background An evolutionary classification of genes from sequenced genomes that distinguishes between orthologs and paralogs is indispensable for genome annotation and evolutionary reconstruction. Shortly after multiple genome sequences of bacteria, archaea, and unicellular eukaryotes became available, an attempt on such a classification was implemented in Clusters of Orthologous Groups of proteins (COGs. Rapid accumulation of genome sequences creates opportunities for refining COGs but also represents a challenge because of error amplification. One of the practical strategies involves construction of refined COGs for phylogenetically compact subsets of genomes. Results New Archaeal Clusters of Orthologous Genes (arCOGs were constructed for 41 archaeal genomes (13 Crenarchaeota, 27 Euryarchaeota and one Nanoarchaeon using an improved procedure that employs a similarity tree between smaller, group-specific clusters, semi-automatically partitions orthology domains in multidomain proteins, and uses profile searches for identification of remote orthologs. The annotation of arCOGs is a consensus between three assignments based on the COGs, the CDD database, and the annotations of homologs in the NR database. The 7538 arCOGs, on average, cover ~88% of the genes in a genome compared to a ~76% coverage in COGs. The finer granularity of ortholog identification in the arCOGs is apparent from the fact that 4538 arCOGs correspond to 2362 COGs; ~40% of the arCOGs are new. The archaeal gene core (protein-coding genes found in all 41 genome consists of 166 arCOGs. The arCOGs were used to reconstruct gene loss and gene gain events during archaeal evolution and gene sets of ancestral forms. The Last Archaeal Common Ancestor (LACA is conservatively estimated to possess 996 genes compared to 1245 and 1335 genes for the last common ancestors of Crenarchaeota and Euryarchaeota, respectively. It is inferred that LACA was a chemoautotrophic hyperthermophile

  10. Genes from scratch--the evolutionary fate of de novo genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlötterer, Christian

    2015-04-01

    Although considered an extremely unlikely event, many genes emerge from previously noncoding genomic regions. This review covers the entire life cycle of such de novo genes. Two competing hypotheses about the process of de novo gene birth are discussed as well as the high death rate of de novo genes. Despite the high death rate, some de novo genes are retained and remain functional, even in distantly related species, through their integration into gene networks. Further studies combining gene expression with ribosome profiling in multiple populations across different species will be instrumental for an improved understanding of the evolutionary processes operating on de novo genes. Copyright © 2015 The Author. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  11. Evolutionary conserved regulation of HIF-1β by NF-κB.

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    Patrick van Uden

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Hypoxia Inducible Factor-1 (HIF-1 is essential for mammalian development and is the principal transcription factor activated by low oxygen tensions. HIF-α subunit quantities and their associated activity are regulated in a post-translational manner, through the concerted action of a class of enzymes called Prolyl Hydroxylases (PHDs and Factor Inhibiting HIF (FIH respectively. However, alternative modes of HIF-α regulation such as translation or transcription are under-investigated, and their importance has not been firmly established. Here, we demonstrate that NF-κB regulates the HIF pathway in a significant and evolutionary conserved manner. We demonstrate that NF-κB directly regulates HIF-1β mRNA and protein. In addition, we found that NF-κB-mediated changes in HIF-1β result in modulation of HIF-2α protein. HIF-1β overexpression can rescue HIF-2α protein levels following NF-κB depletion. Significantly, NF-κB regulates HIF-1β (tango and HIF-α (sima levels and activity (Hph/fatiga, ImpL3/ldha in Drosophila, both in normoxia and hypoxia, indicating an evolutionary conserved mode of regulation. These results reveal a novel mechanism of HIF regulation, with impact in the development of novel therapeutic strategies for HIF-related pathologies including ageing, ischemia, and cancer.

  12. Evolutionary conserved regulation of HIF-1β by NF-κB.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Uden, Patrick; Kenneth, Niall S; Webster, Ryan; Müller, H Arno; Mudie, Sharon; Rocha, Sonia

    2011-01-27

    Hypoxia Inducible Factor-1 (HIF-1) is essential for mammalian development and is the principal transcription factor activated by low oxygen tensions. HIF-α subunit quantities and their associated activity are regulated in a post-translational manner, through the concerted action of a class of enzymes called Prolyl Hydroxylases (PHDs) and Factor Inhibiting HIF (FIH) respectively. However, alternative modes of HIF-α regulation such as translation or transcription are under-investigated, and their importance has not been firmly established. Here, we demonstrate that NF-κB regulates the HIF pathway in a significant and evolutionary conserved manner. We demonstrate that NF-κB directly regulates HIF-1β mRNA and protein. In addition, we found that NF-κB-mediated changes in HIF-1β result in modulation of HIF-2α protein. HIF-1β overexpression can rescue HIF-2α protein levels following NF-κB depletion. Significantly, NF-κB regulates HIF-1β (tango) and HIF-α (sima) levels and activity (Hph/fatiga, ImpL3/ldha) in Drosophila, both in normoxia and hypoxia, indicating an evolutionary conserved mode of regulation. These results reveal a novel mechanism of HIF regulation, with impact in the development of novel therapeutic strategies for HIF-related pathologies including ageing, ischemia, and cancer.

  13. Evolutionary Dynamics of Male Reproductive Genes in the Drosophila virilis Subgroup

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    Yasir H. Ahmed-Braimah

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Postcopulatory sexual selection (PCSS is a potent evolutionary force that can drive rapid changes of reproductive genes within species, and thus has the potential to generate reproductive incompatibilities between species. Male seminal fluid proteins (SFPs are major players in postmating interactions, and are important targets of PCSS in males. The virilis subgroup of Drosophila exhibits strong interspecific gametic incompatibilities, and can serve as a model to study the genetic basis of PCSS and gametic isolation. However, reproductive genes in this group have not been characterized. Here we utilize short-read RNA sequencing of male reproductive organs to examine the evolutionary dynamics of reproductive genes in members of the virilis subgroup: D. americana, D. lummei, D. novamexicana, and D. virilis. We find that the majority of male reproductive transcripts are testes-biased, accounting for ∼15% of all annotated genes. Ejaculatory bulb (EB-biased transcripts largely code for lipid metabolic enzymes, and contain orthologs of the D. melanogaster EB protein, Peb-me, which is involved in mating-plug formation. In addition, we identify 71 candidate SFPs, and show that this gene set has the highest rate of nonsynonymous codon substitution relative to testes- and EB-biased genes. Furthermore, we identify orthologs of 35 D. melanogaster SFPs that have conserved accessory gland expression in the virilis group. Finally, we show that several of the SFPs that have the highest rate of nonsynonymous codon substitution reside on chromosomal regions, which contributes to paternal gametic incompatibility between species. Our results show that SFPs rapidly diversify in the virilis group, and suggest that they likely play a role in PCSS and/or gametic isolation.

  14. Evolutionary Dynamics of Male Reproductive Genes in the Drosophila virilis Subgroup.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmed-Braimah, Yasir H; Unckless, Robert L; Clark, Andrew G

    2017-09-07

    Postcopulatory sexual selection (PCSS) is a potent evolutionary force that can drive rapid changes of reproductive genes within species, and thus has the potential to generate reproductive incompatibilities between species. Male seminal fluid proteins (SFPs) are major players in postmating interactions, and are important targets of PCSS in males. The virilis subgroup of Drosophila exhibits strong interspecific gametic incompatibilities, and can serve as a model to study the genetic basis of PCSS and gametic isolation. However, reproductive genes in this group have not been characterized. Here we utilize short-read RNA sequencing of male reproductive organs to examine the evolutionary dynamics of reproductive genes in members of the virilis subgroup: D. americana, D. lummei, D. novamexicana, and D. virilis We find that the majority of male reproductive transcripts are testes-biased, accounting for ∼15% of all annotated genes. Ejaculatory bulb (EB)-biased transcripts largely code for lipid metabolic enzymes, and contain orthologs of the D. melanogaster EB protein, Peb-me, which is involved in mating-plug formation. In addition, we identify 71 candidate SFPs, and show that this gene set has the highest rate of nonsynonymous codon substitution relative to testes- and EB-biased genes. Furthermore, we identify orthologs of 35 D. melanogaster SFPs that have conserved accessory gland expression in the virilis group. Finally, we show that several of the SFPs that have the highest rate of nonsynonymous codon substitution reside on chromosomal regions, which contributes to paternal gametic incompatibility between species. Our results show that SFPs rapidly diversify in the virilis group, and suggest that they likely play a role in PCSS and/or gametic isolation. Copyright © 2017 Ahmed-Braimah et al.

  15. Evolutionary Diversifaction of Aminopeptidase N in Lepidoptera by Conserved Clade-specific Amino Acid Residues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Austin L.

    2015-01-01

    Members of the aminopepidase N (APN) gene family of the insect order Lepidoptera (moths and butterflies) bind the naturally insecticidal Cry toxins produced by the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis. Phylogenetic analysis of amino acid sequences of seven lepidopteran APN classes provided strong support for the hypothesis that lepidopteran APN2 class arose by gene duplication prior to the most recent common ancestor of Lepidoptera and Diptera. The Cry toxin-binding region (BR) of lepidopteran and dipteran APNs was subject to stronger purifying selection within APN classes than was the remainder of the molecule, reflecting conservation of catalytic site and adjoining residues within the BR. Of lepidopteran APN classes, APN2, APN6, and APN8 showed the strongest evidence of functional specialization, both in expression patterns and in the occurrence of conserved derived amino acid residues. The latter three APN classes also shared a convergently evolved conserved residue close to the catalytic site. APN8 showed a particularly strong tendency towards class-specific conserved residues, including one of the catalytic site residues in the BR and ten others in close vicinity to the catalytic site residues. The occurrence of class-specific sequences along with the conservation of enzymatic function is consistent with the hypothesis that the presence of Cry toxins in the environment has been a factor shaping the evolution of this multi-gene family. PMID:24675701

  16. Evolutionary diversification of aminopeptidase N in Lepidoptera by conserved clade-specific amino acid residues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Austin L

    2014-07-01

    Members of the aminopepidase N (APN) gene family of the insect order Lepidoptera (moths and butterflies) bind the naturally insecticidal Cry toxins produced by the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis. Phylogenetic analysis of amino acid sequences of seven lepidopteran APN classes provided strong support for the hypothesis that lepidopteran APN2 class arose by gene duplication prior to the most recent common ancestor of Lepidoptera and Diptera. The Cry toxin-binding region (BR) of lepidopteran and dipteran APNs was subject to stronger purifying selection within APN classes than was the remainder of the molecule, reflecting conservation of catalytic site and adjoining residues within the BR. Of lepidopteran APN classes, APN2, APN6, and APN8 showed the strongest evidence of functional specialization, both in expression patterns and in the occurrence of conserved derived amino acid residues. The latter three APN classes also shared a convergently evolved conserved residue close to the catalytic site. APN8 showed a particularly strong tendency towards class-specific conserved residues, including one of the catalytic site residues in the BR and ten others in close vicinity to the catalytic site residues. The occurrence of class-specific sequences along with the conservation of enzymatic function is consistent with the hypothesis that the presence of Cry toxins in the environment has been a factor shaping the evolution of this multi-gene family. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Why is the correlation between gene importance and gene evolutionary rate so weak?

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    Zhi Wang

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available One of the few commonly believed principles of molecular evolution is that functionally more important genes (or DNA sequences evolve more slowly than less important ones. This principle is widely used by molecular biologists in daily practice. However, recent genomic analysis of a diverse array of organisms found only weak, negative correlations between the evolutionary rate of a gene and its functional importance, typically measured under a single benign lab condition. A frequently suggested cause of the above finding is that gene importance determined in the lab differs from that in an organism's natural environment. Here, we test this hypothesis in yeast using gene importance values experimentally determined in 418 lab conditions or computationally predicted for 10,000 nutritional conditions. In no single condition or combination of conditions did we find a much stronger negative correlation, which is explainable by our subsequent finding that always-essential (enzyme genes do not evolve significantly more slowly than sometimes-essential or always-nonessential ones. Furthermore, we verified that functional density, approximated by the fraction of amino acid sites within protein domains, is uncorrelated with gene importance. Thus, neither the lab-nature mismatch nor a potentially biased among-gene distribution of functional density explains the observed weakness of the correlation between gene importance and evolutionary rate. We conclude that the weakness is factual, rather than artifactual. In addition to being weakened by population genetic reasons, the correlation is likely to have been further weakened by the presence of multiple nontrivial rate determinants that are independent from gene importance. These findings notwithstanding, we show that the principle of slower evolution of more important genes does have some predictive power when genes with vastly different evolutionary rates are compared, explaining why the principle can be

  18. Phylogeography of Camellia taliensis (Theaceae) inferred from chloroplast and nuclear DNA: insights into evolutionary history and conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Background As one of the most important but seriously endangered wild relatives of the cultivated tea, Camellia taliensis harbors valuable gene resources for tea tree improvement in the future. The knowledge of genetic variation and population structure may provide insights into evolutionary history and germplasm conservation of the species. Results Here, we sampled 21 natural populations from the species' range in China and performed the phylogeography of C. taliensis by using the nuclear PAL gene fragment and chloroplast rpl32-trnL intergenic spacer. Levels of haplotype diversity and nucleotide diversity detected at rpl32-trnL (h = 0.841; π = 0.00314) were almost as high as at PAL (h = 0.836; π = 0.00417). Significant chloroplast DNA population subdivision was detected (GST = 0.988; NST = 0.989), suggesting fairly high genetic differentiation and low levels of recurrent gene flow through seeds among populations. Nested clade phylogeographic analysis of chlorotypes suggests that population genetic structure in C. taliensis has been affected by habitat fragmentation in the past. However, the detection of a moderate nrDNA population subdivision (GST = 0.222; NST = 0.301) provided the evidence of efficient pollen-mediated gene flow among populations and significant phylogeographical structure (NST > GST; P < 0.01). The analysis of PAL haplotypes indicates that phylogeographical pattern of nrDNA haplotypes might be caused by restricted gene flow with isolation by distance, which was also supported by Mantel’s test of nrDNA haplotypes (r = 0.234, P < 0.001). We found that chlorotype C1 was fixed in seven populations of Lancang River Region, implying that the Lancang River might have provided a corridor for the long-distance dispersal of the species. Conclusions We found that C. taliensis showed fairly high genetic differentiation resulting from restricted gene flow and habitat fragmentation. This phylogeographical

  19. Evolutionary diversification of plant shikimate kinase gene duplicates.

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    Geoffrey Fucile

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Shikimate kinase (SK; EC 2.7.1.71 catalyzes the fifth reaction of the shikimate pathway, which directs carbon from the central metabolism pool to a broad range of secondary metabolites involved in plant development, growth, and stress responses. In this study, we demonstrate the role of plant SK gene duplicate evolution in the diversification of metabolic regulation and the acquisition of novel and physiologically essential function. Phylogenetic analysis of plant SK homologs resolves an orthologous cluster of plant SKs and two functionally distinct orthologous clusters. These previously undescribed genes, shikimate kinase-like 1 (SKL1 and -2 (SKL2, do not encode SK activity, are present in all major plant lineages, and apparently evolved under positive selection following SK gene duplication over 400 MYA. This is supported by functional assays using recombinant SK, SKL1, and SKL2 from Arabidopsis thaliana (At and evolutionary analyses of the diversification of SK-catalytic and -substrate binding sites based on theoretical structure models. AtSKL1 mutants yield albino and novel variegated phenotypes, which indicate SKL1 is required for chloroplast biogenesis. Extant SKL2 sequences show a strong genetic signature of positive selection, which is enriched in a protein-protein interaction module not found in other SK homologs. We also report the first kinetic characterization of plant SKs and show that gene expression diversification among the AtSK inparalogs is correlated with developmental processes and stress responses. This study examines the functional diversification of ancient and recent plant SK gene duplicates and highlights the utility of SKs as scaffolds for functional innovation.

  20. Evolutionary signatures amongst disease genes permit novel methods for gene prioritization and construction of informative gene-based networks.

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    Nolan Priedigkeit

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Genes involved in the same function tend to have similar evolutionary histories, in that their rates of evolution covary over time. This coevolutionary signature, termed Evolutionary Rate Covariation (ERC, is calculated using only gene sequences from a set of closely related species and has demonstrated potential as a computational tool for inferring functional relationships between genes. To further define applications of ERC, we first established that roughly 55% of genetic diseases posses an ERC signature between their contributing genes. At a false discovery rate of 5% we report 40 such diseases including cancers, developmental disorders and mitochondrial diseases. Given these coevolutionary signatures between disease genes, we then assessed ERC's ability to prioritize known disease genes out of a list of unrelated candidates. We found that in the presence of an ERC signature, the true disease gene is effectively prioritized to the top 6% of candidates on average. We then apply this strategy to a melanoma-associated region on chromosome 1 and identify MCL1 as a potential causative gene. Furthermore, to gain global insight into disease mechanisms, we used ERC to predict molecular connections between 310 nominally distinct diseases. The resulting "disease map" network associates several diseases with related pathogenic mechanisms and unveils many novel relationships between clinically distinct diseases, such as between Hirschsprung's disease and melanoma. Taken together, these results demonstrate the utility of molecular evolution as a gene discovery platform and show that evolutionary signatures can be used to build informative gene-based networks.

  1. 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.

  2. Evolutionary conserved mechanisms pervade structure and transcriptional modulation of allograft inflammatory factor-1 from sea anemone Anemonia viridis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuttitta, Angela; Ragusa, Maria Antonietta; Costa, Salvatore; Bennici, Carmelo; Colombo, Paolo; Mazzola, Salvatore; Gianguzza, Fabrizio; Nicosia, Aldo

    2017-08-01

    Gene family encoding allograft inflammatory factor-1 (AIF-1) is well conserved among organisms; however, there is limited knowledge in lower organisms. In this study, the first AIF-1 homologue from cnidarians was identified and characterised in the sea anemone Anemonia viridis. The full-length cDNA of AvAIF-1 was of 913 bp with a 5' -untranslated region (UTR) of 148 bp, a 3'-UTR of 315 and an open reading frame (ORF) of 450 bp encoding a polypeptide with149 amino acid residues and predicted molecular weight of about 17 kDa. The predicted protein possesses evolutionary conserved EF hand Ca2+ binding motifs, post-transcriptional modification sites and a 3D structure which can be superimposed with human members of AIF-1 family. The AvAIF-1 transcript was constitutively expressed in all tested tissues of unchallenged sea anemone, suggesting that AvAIF-1 could serve as a general protective factor under normal physiological conditions. Moreover, we profiled the transcriptional activation of AvAIF-1 after challenges with different abiotic/biotic stresses showing induction by warming conditions, heavy metals exposure and immune stimulation. Thus, mechanisms associated to inflammation and immune challenges up-regulated AvAIF-1 mRNA levels. Our results suggest its involvement in the inflammatory processes and immune response of A. viridis. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Weak correlation between sequence conservation in promoter regions and in protein-coding regions of human-mouse orthologous gene pairs

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    Nakai Kenta

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Interspecies sequence comparison is a powerful tool to extract functional or evolutionary information from the genomes of organisms. A number of studies have compared protein sequences or promoter sequences between mammals, which provided many insights into genomics. However, the correlation between protein conservation and promoter conservation remains controversial. Results We examined promoter conservation as well as protein conservation for 6,901 human and mouse orthologous genes, and observed a very weak correlation between them. We further investigated their relationship by decomposing it based on functional categories, and identified categories with significant tendencies. Remarkably, the 'ribosome' category showed significantly low promoter conservation, despite its high protein conservation, and the 'extracellular matrix' category showed significantly high promoter conservation, in spite of its low protein conservation. Conclusion Our results show the relation of gene function to protein conservation and promoter conservation, and revealed that there seem to be nonparallel components between protein and promoter sequence evolution.

  4. An evolutionary model for protein-coding regions with conserved RNA structure

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Jakob Skou; Forsberg, Roald; Meyer, Irmtraud Margret

    2004-01-01

    components of traditional phylogenetic models. We applied this to a data set of full-genome sequences from the hepatitis C virus where five RNA structures are mapped within the coding region. This allowed us to partition the effects of selection on different structural elements and to test various hypotheses...... concerning the relation of these effects. Of particular interest, we found evidence of a functional role of loop and bulge regions, as these were shown to evolve according to a different and more constrained selective regime than the nonpairing regions outside the RNA structures. Other potential applications......Here we present a model of nucleotide substitution in protein-coding regions that also encode the formation of conserved RNA structures. In such regions, apparent evolutionary context dependencies exist, both between nucleotides occupying the same codon and between nucleotides forming a base pair...

  5. Diversity and Evolutionary History of Iron Metabolism Genes in Diatoms.

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    Ryan D Groussman

    Full Text Available Ferroproteins arose early in Earth's history, prior to the emergence of oxygenic photosynthesis and the subsequent reduction of bioavailable iron. Today, iron availability limits primary productivity in about 30% of the world's oceans. Diatoms, responsible for nearly half of oceanic primary production, have evolved molecular strategies for coping with variable iron concentrations. Our understanding of the evolutionary breadth of these strategies has been restricted by the limited number of species for which molecular sequence data is available. To uncover the diversity of strategies marine diatoms employ to meet cellular iron demands, we analyzed 367 newly released marine microbial eukaryotic transcriptomes, which include 47 diatom species. We focused on genes encoding proteins previously identified as having a role in iron management: iron uptake (high-affinity ferric reductase, multi-copper oxidase, and Fe(III permease; iron storage (ferritin; iron-induced protein substitutions (flavodoxin/ferredoxin, and plastocyanin/cytochrome c6 and defense against reactive oxygen species (superoxide dismutases. Homologs encoding the high-affinity iron uptake system components were detected across the four diatom Classes suggesting an ancient origin for this pathway. Ferritin transcripts were also detected in all Classes, revealing a more widespread utilization of ferritin throughout diatoms than previously recognized. Flavodoxin and plastocyanin transcripts indicate possible alternative redox metal strategies. Predicted localization signals for ferredoxin identify multiple examples of gene transfer from the plastid to the nuclear genome. Transcripts encoding four superoxide dismutase metalloforms were detected, including a putative nickel-coordinating isozyme. Taken together, our results suggest that the majority of iron metabolism genes in diatoms appear to be vertically inherited with functional diversity achieved via possible neofunctionalization of

  6. Assessing the evolutionary rate of positional orthologous genes in prokaryotes using synteny data

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    Lespinet Olivier

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Comparison of completely sequenced microbial genomes has revealed how fluid these genomes are. Detecting synteny blocks requires reliable methods to determining the orthologs among the whole set of homologs detected by exhaustive comparisons between each pair of completely sequenced genomes. This is a complex and difficult problem in the field of comparative genomics but will help to better understand the way prokaryotic genomes are evolving. Results We have developed a suite of programs that automate three essential steps to study conservation of gene order, and validated them with a set of 107 bacteria and archaea that cover the majority of the prokaryotic taxonomic space. We identified the whole set of shared homologs between two or more species and computed the evolutionary distance separating each pair of homologs. We applied two strategies to extract from the set of homologs a collection of valid orthologs shared by at least two genomes. The first computes the Reciprocal Smallest Distance (RSD using the PAM distances separating pairs of homologs. The second method groups homologs in families and reconstructs each family's evolutionary tree, distinguishing bona fide orthologs as well as paralogs created after the last speciation event. Although the phylogenetic tree method often succeeds where RSD fails, the reverse could occasionally be true. Accordingly, we used the data obtained with either methods or their intersection to number the orthologs that are adjacent in for each pair of genomes, the Positional Orthologous Genes (POGs, and to further study their properties. Once all these synteny blocks have been detected, we showed that POGs are subject to more evolutionary constraints than orthologs outside synteny groups, whichever the taxonomic distance separating the compared organisms. Conclusion The suite of programs described in this paper allows a reliable detection of orthologs and is useful for evaluating gene

  7. Are Pharmaceuticals with Evolutionary Conserved Molecular Drug Targets More Potent to Cause Toxic Effects in Non-Target Organisms?

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    Furuhagen, Sara; Fuchs, Anne; Lundström Belleza, Elin; Breitholtz, Magnus; Gorokhova, Elena

    2014-01-01

    The ubiquitous use of pharmaceuticals has resulted in a continuous discharge into wastewater and pharmaceuticals and their metabolites are found in the environment. Due to their design towards specific drug targets, pharmaceuticals may be therapeutically active already at low environmental concentrations. Several human drug targets are evolutionary conserved in aquatic organisms, raising concerns about effects of these pharmaceuticals in non-target organisms. In this study, we hypothesized that the toxicity of a pharmaceutical towards a non-target invertebrate depends on the presence of the human drug target orthologs in this species. This was tested by assessing toxicity of pharmaceuticals with (miconazole and promethazine) and without (levonorgestrel) identified drug target orthologs in the cladoceran Daphnia magna. The toxicity was evaluated using general toxicity endpoints at individual (immobility, reproduction and development), biochemical (RNA and DNA content) and molecular (gene expression) levels. The results provide evidence for higher toxicity of miconazole and promethazine, i.e. the drugs with identified drug target orthologs. At the individual level, miconazole had the lowest effect concentrations for immobility and reproduction (0.3 and 0.022 mg L−1, respectively) followed by promethazine (1.6 and 0.18 mg L−1, respectively). At the biochemical level, individual RNA content was affected by miconazole and promethazine already at 0.0023 and 0.059 mg L−1, respectively. At the molecular level, gene expression for cuticle protein was significantly suppressed by exposure to both miconazole and promethazine; moreover, daphnids exposed to miconazole had significantly lower vitellogenin expression. Levonorgestrel did not have any effects on any endpoints in the concentrations tested. These results highlight the importance of considering drug target conservation in environmental risk assessments of pharmaceuticals. PMID:25140792

  8. Evolutionary conservation of mammalian sperm proteins associates with overall, not tyrosine, phosphorylation in human spermatozoa.

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    Schumacher, Julia; Ramljak, Sanja; Asif, Abdul R; Schaffrath, Michael; Zischler, Hans; Herlyn, Holger

    2013-12-06

    We investigated possible associations between sequence evolution of mammalian sperm proteins and their phosphorylation status in humans. As a reference, spermatozoa from three normozoospermic men were analyzed combining two-dimensional gel electrophoresis, immunoblotting, and mass spectrometry. We identified 99 sperm proteins (thereof 42 newly described) and determined the phosphorylation status for most of them. Sequence evolution was studied across six mammalian species using nonsynonymous/synonymous rate ratios (dN/dS) and amino acid distances. Site-specific purifying selection was assessed employing average ratios of evolutionary rates at phosphorylated versus nonphosphorylated amino acids (α). According to our data, mammalian sperm proteins do not show statistically significant sequence conservation difference, no matter if the human ortholog is a phosphoprotein with or without tyrosine (Y) phosphorylation. In contrast, overall phosphorylation of human sperm proteins, i.e., phosphorylation at serine (S), threonine (T), and/or Y residues, associates with above-average conservation of sequences. Complementary investigations suggest that numerous protein-protein interactants constrain sequence evolution of sperm phosphoproteins. Although our findings reject a special relevance of Y phosphorylation for sperm functioning, they still indicate that overall phosphorylation substantially contributes to proper functioning of sperm proteins. Hence, phosphorylated sperm proteins might be considered as prime candidates for diagnosis and treatment of reduced male fertility.

  9. Evolutionary Origin and Conserved Structural Building Blocks of Riboswitches and Ribosomal RNAs: Riboswitches as Probable Target Sites for Aminoglycosides Interaction

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    Elnaz Mehdizadeh Aghdam

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: Riboswitches, as noncoding RNA sequences, control gene expression through direct ligand binding. Sporadic reports on the structural relation of riboswitches with ribosomal RNAs (rRNA, raises an interest in possible similarity between riboswitches and rRNAs evolutionary origins. Since aminoglycoside antibiotics affect microbial cells through binding to functional sites of the bacterial rRNA, finding any conformational and functional relation between riboswitches/rRNAs is utmost important in both of medicinal and basic research. Methods: Analysis of the riboswitches structures were carried out using bioinformatics and computational tools. The possible functional similarity of riboswitches with rRNAs was evaluated based on the affinity of paromomycin antibiotic (targeting “A site” of 16S rRNA to riboswitches via docking method. Results: There was high structural similarity between riboswitches and rRNAs, but not any particular sequence based similarity between them was found. The building blocks including "hairpin loop containing UUU", "peptidyl transferase center conserved hairpin A loop"," helix 45" and "S2 (G8 hairpin" as high identical rRNA motifs were detected in all kinds of riboswitches. Surprisingly, binding energies of paromomycin with different riboswitches are considerably better than the binding energy of paromomycin with “16S rRNA A site”. Therefore the high affinity of paromomycin to bind riboswitches in comparison with rRNA “A site” suggests a new insight about riboswitches as possible targets for aminoglycoside antibiotics. Conclusion: These findings are considered as a possible supporting evidence for evolutionary origin of riboswitches/rRNAs and also their role in the exertion of antibiotics effects to design new drugs based on the concomitant effects via rRNA/riboswitches.

  10. Integrating Traditional and Evolutionary Knowledge in Biodiversity Conservation: a Population Level Case Study

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    Dylan J. Fraser

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Despite their dual importance in the assessment of endangered/threatened species, there have been few attempts to integrate traditional ecological knowledge (TEK and evolutionary biology knowledge (EBK at the population level. We contrasted long-term aboriginal TEK with previously obtained EBK in the context of seasonal migratory habits and population biology of a salmonid fish, brook charr, (Salvelinus fontinalis inhabiting a large, remote postglacial lake. Compilation of TEK spanning four decades involved analytical workshops, semidirective interviews, and collaborative fieldwork with local aboriginal informants and fishing guides. We found that TEK complemented EBK of brook charr by providing concordant and additional information about (1 population viability; (2 breeding areas and migration patterns of divergent populations; and (3 the behavioral ecology of populations within feeding areas; all of which may ultimately affect the maintenance of population diversity. Aboriginal concerns related to human pressures on this species, not revealed by EBK, also help to focus future conservation initiatives for divergent populations and to encourage restoration of traditional fishing practices. However, relative to EBK, the relevance of TEK to salmonid biodiversity conservation was evident mainly at a smaller spatial scale, for example, that of individual rivers occupied by populations or certain lake sectors. Nevertheless, EBK was only collected over a 4-yr period, so TEK provided an essential long-term temporal window to evaluate population differences and persistence. We concluded that, despite different conceptual underpinnings, spatially and temporally varying TEK and EBK both contribute to the knowledge base required to achieve sustainability and effective biodiversity conservation planning for a given species. Such integration may be particularly relevant in many isolated regions, where intraspecific diversity can go unrecognized due to sparse

  11. Evolutionary history of chordate PAX genes: dynamics of change in a complex gene family.

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    Vanessa Rodrigues Paixão-Côrtes

    Full Text Available Paired box (PAX genes are transcription factors that play important roles in embryonic development. Although the PAX gene family occurs in animals only, it is widely distributed. Among the vertebrates, its 9 genes appear to be the product of complete duplication of an original set of 4 genes, followed by an additional partial duplication. Although some studies of PAX genes have been conducted, no comprehensive survey of these genes across the entire taxonomic unit has yet been attempted. In this study, we conducted a detailed comparison of PAX sequences from 188 chordates, which revealed restricted variation. The absence of PAX4 and PAX8 among some species of reptiles and birds was notable; however, all 9 genes were present in all 74 mammalian genomes investigated. A search for signatures of selection indicated that all genes are subject to purifying selection, with a possible constraint relaxation in PAX4, PAX7, and PAX8. This result indicates asymmetric evolution of PAX family genes, which can be associated with the emergence of adaptive novelties in the chordate evolutionary trajectory.

  12. Discovery of Conservation and Diversification of miR171 Genes by Phylogenetic Analysis based on Global Genomes

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    Xudong Zhu

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The microRNA171 (miR171 family is widely distributed and highly conserved in a range of species and plays critical roles in regulating plant growth and development through repressing expression of ( transcription factors. However, information on the evolutionary conservation and functional diversification of the miRNA171 family members remains scanty. We reconstructed the phylogenetic relationships among miR171 precursor and mature sequences so as to investigate the extent and degree of evolutionary conservation of miR171 in (L. Heynh. (ath, grape ( L. (vvi, poplar ( Torr. & A.Gray ex Hook. (ptc, and rice ( L. (osa. Despite strong conservation of over 80%, some mature miR171 sequences, such as , and and , -, and -, have undergone critical sequence variation, leading to functional diversification, since they target non gene transcript(s. Phylogenetic analyses revealed a combination of old ancestral relationships and recent lineage-specific diversification in the miR171 family within the four model plants. The -regulatory motifs on the upstream promoter sequences of genes were highly divergent and shared some similar elements, indicating their possible contribution to the functional variation observed within the miR171 family. This study will buttress our understanding of the functional differentiation of miRNAs and the relationships of miRNA–target pairs based on the evolutionary history of genes.

  13. Vampire bats exhibit evolutionary reduction of bitter taste receptor genes common to other bats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, Wei; Zhao, Huabin

    2014-08-07

    The bitter taste serves as an important natural defence against the ingestion of poisonous foods and is thus believed to be indispensable in animals. However, vampire bats are obligate blood feeders that show a reduced behavioural response towards bitter-tasting compounds. To test whether bitter taste receptor genes (T2Rs) have been relaxed from selective constraint in vampire bats, we sampled all three vampire bat species and 11 non-vampire bats, and sequenced nine one-to-one orthologous T2Rs that are assumed to be functionally conserved in all bats. We generated 85 T2R sequences and found that vampire bats have a significantly greater percentage of pseudogenes than other bats. These results strongly suggest a relaxation of selective constraint and a reduction of bitter taste function in vampire bats. We also found that vampire bats retain many intact T2Rs, and that the taste signalling pathway gene Calhm1 remains complete and intact with strong functional constraint. These results suggest the presence of some bitter taste function in vampire bats, although it is not likely to play a major role in food selection. Together, our study suggests that the evolutionary reduction of bitter taste function in animals is more pervasive than previously believed, and highlights the importance of extra-oral functions of taste receptor genes. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  14. Molecular cloning, characterization and evolutionary analysis of leptin gene in Chinese giant salamander, Andrias davidianus

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    Tian Hai-feng

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Leptin is an important hormone possessing diverse physiological roles in mammals and teleosts. However, it has been characterized only in a few amphibian species, and its evolutions are still under debate. Here, the full length of the leptin (Adlep cDNA of Chinese giant salamander (Andrias davidianus, an early diverging amphibian species, is characterized and according to the results of the primary sequence analysis, tertiary structure reconstruction and phylogenetic analysis is confirmed to be an ortholog of mammalian leptin. An intron was identified between the coding exons of A. davidianus leptin, which indicated that the leptin is present in the salamander genome and contains a conserved gene structure in vertebrates. Adlep is widely distributed but expression levels vary among different tissues, with highest expression levels in the muscle. Additionally, the leptin receptor and other genes were mapped to three known leptin signaling pathways, suggesting that the leptin signaling pathways are present in A. davidianus. Phylogenetic topology of leptins are consistent with the generally accepted evolutionary relationships of vertebrates, and multiple leptin members found in teleosts seem to be obtained through a Cluopeocephala-specific gene duplication event. Our results will lay a foundation for further investigations into the physiological roles of leptin in A. davidianus.

  15. Evidence for evolutionary divergence of activity-dependent gene expression in developing neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qiu, Jing; McQueen, Jamie; Bilican, Bilada; Dando, Owen; Magnani, Dario; Punovuori, Karolina; Selvaraj, Bhuvaneish T; Livesey, Matthew; Haghi, Ghazal; Heron, Samuel; Burr, Karen; Patani, Rickie; Rajan, Rinku; Sheppard, Olivia; Kind, Peter C; Simpson, T Ian; Tybulewicz, Victor LJ; Wyllie, David JA; Fisher, Elizabeth MC; Lowell, Sally; Chandran, Siddharthan; Hardingham, Giles E

    2016-01-01

    Evolutionary differences in gene regulation between humans and lower mammalian experimental systems are incompletely understood, a potential translational obstacle that is challenging to surmount in neurons, where primary tissue availability is poor. Rodent-based studies show that activity-dependent transcriptional programs mediate myriad functions in neuronal development, but the extent of their conservation in human neurons is unknown. We compared activity-dependent transcriptional responses in developing human stem cell-derived cortical neurons with those induced in developing primary- or stem cell-derived mouse cortical neurons. While activity-dependent gene-responsiveness showed little dependence on developmental stage or origin (primary tissue vs. stem cell), notable species-dependent differences were observed. Moreover, differential species-specific gene ortholog regulation was recapitulated in aneuploid mouse neurons carrying human chromosome-21, implicating promoter/enhancer sequence divergence as a factor, including human-specific activity-responsive AP-1 sites. These findings support the use of human neuronal systems for probing transcriptional responses to physiological stimuli or indeed pharmaceutical agents. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.20337.001 PMID:27692071

  16. Conserved genomic organisation of Group B Sox genes in insects.

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    Woerfel Gertrud

    2005-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Sox domain containing genes are important metazoan transcriptional regulators implicated in a wide rage of developmental processes. The vertebrate B subgroup contains the Sox1, Sox2 and Sox3 genes that have early functions in neural development. Previous studies show that Drosophila Group B genes have been functionally conserved since they play essential roles in early neural specification and mutations in the Drosophila Dichaete and SoxN genes can be rescued with mammalian Sox genes. Despite their importance, the extent and organisation of the Group B family in Drosophila has not been fully characterised, an important step in using Drosophila to examine conserved aspects of Group B Sox gene function. Results We have used the directed cDNA sequencing along with the output from the publicly-available genome sequencing projects to examine the structure of Group B Sox domain genes in Drosophila melanogaster, Drosophila pseudoobscura, Anopheles gambiae and Apis mellifora. All of the insect genomes contain four genes encoding Group B proteins, two of which are intronless, as is the case with vertebrate group B genes. As has been previously reported and unusually for Group B genes, two of the insect group B genes, Sox21a and Sox21b, contain introns within their DNA-binding domains. We find that the highly unusual multi-exon structure of the Sox21b gene is common to the insects. In addition, we find that three of the group B Sox genes are organised in a linked cluster in the insect genomes. By in situ hybridisation we show that the pattern of expression of each of the four group B genes during embryogenesis is conserved between D. melanogaster and D. pseudoobscura. Conclusion The DNA-binding domain sequences and genomic organisation of the group B genes have been conserved over 300 My of evolution since the last common ancestor of the Hymenoptera and the Diptera. Our analysis suggests insects have two Group B1 genes, SoxN and

  17. The evolutionary relationship of the transcriptionally active fabp11a (intronless) and fabp11b genes of medaka with fabp11 genes of other teleost fishes.

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    Parmar, Manoj B; Venkatachalam, Ananda B; Wright, Jonathan M

    2012-07-01

    Here we describe the structure of the fatty acid-binding protein 11a and 11b genes (fabp11a and fabp11b) in medaka, and their evolutionary relationship to fabp11 genes from other teleost fishes. Initial studies indicated that the medaka fabp11a gene is intronless, but the fabp11b gene consists of four exons separated by three introns, a genomic organization that is characteristic of most members of the intracellular lipid-binding protein family. Based on genomic sequence, we conclude that the intronless fabp11a gene most likely arose as a result of reverse transcription of its mRNA transcript into cDNA followed by integration into chromosomal DNA. The ancestral intron-containing fabp11a gene was presumably lost from the medaka genome. The duplicated fabp11 genes extant in medaka encode polypeptides of 134 amino acids, which share highest sequence identity and similarity, and cluster in a distinct phylogenetic clade, with their orthologs in other teleost fishes. The fabp11a and fabp11b genes in medaka are therefore orthologs of the fabp11a and fabp11b genes, respectively, of other teleost fishes. No conserved gene synteny was found between medaka fabp11a and fabp11a genes from other teleost fishes, supporting our suggestion as to how this intronless gene arose. However, conserved gene synteny was evident between medaka fabp11b and fabp11b genes from other teleost fishes. The tissue-specific distribution of transcripts for medaka and zebrafish fabp11a and fabp11b genes revealed acquisition of a new function(s) in various tissues by the medaka fabp11b gene, which may explain the retention of sister duplicates of fabp11 in the medaka genome. © 2012 The Authors Journal compilation © 2012 FEBS.

  18. Abundant RNA editing sites of chloroplast protein-coding genes in Ginkgo biloba and an evolutionary pattern analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Peng; Huang, Sheng; Xiao, Guanghui; Zhang, Yuzhou; Yu, Jianing

    2016-12-01

    RNA editing is a posttranscriptional modification process that alters the RNA sequence so that it deviates from the genomic DNA sequence. RNA editing mainly occurs in chloroplasts and mitochondrial genomes, and the number of editing sites varies in terrestrial plants. Why and how RNA editing systems evolved remains a mystery. Ginkgo biloba is one of the oldest seed plants and has an important evolutionary position. Determining the patterns and distribution of RNA editing in the ancient plant provides insights into the evolutionary trend of RNA editing, and helping us to further understand their biological significance. In this paper, we investigated 82 protein-coding genes in the chloroplast genome of G. biloba and identified 255 editing sites, which is the highest number of RNA editing events reported in a gymnosperm. All of the editing sites were C-to-U conversions, which mainly occurred in the second codon position, biased towards to the U_A context, and caused an increase in hydrophobic amino acids. RNA editing could change the secondary structures of 82 proteins, and create or eliminate a transmembrane region in five proteins as determined in silico. Finally, the evolutionary tendencies of RNA editing in different gene groups were estimated using the nonsynonymous-synonymous substitution rate selection mode. The G. biloba chloroplast genome possesses the highest number of RNA editing events reported so far in a seed plant. Most of the RNA editing sites can restore amino acid conservation, increase hydrophobicity, and even influence protein structures. Similar purifying selections constitute the dominant evolutionary force at the editing sites of essential genes, such as the psa, some psb and pet groups, and a positive selection occurred in the editing sites of nonessential genes, such as most ndh and a few psb genes.

  19. New Insights on Coffea miRNAs: Features and Evolutionary Conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaves, S S; Fernandes-Brum, C N; Silva, G F F; Ferrara-Barbosa, B C; Paiva, L V; Nogueira, F T S; Cardoso, T C S; Amaral, L R; de Souza Gomes, M; Chalfun-Junior, A

    2015-10-01

    Small RNAs influence the gene expression at the post-transcriptional level by guiding messenger RNA (mRNA) cleavage, translational repression, and chromatin modifications. In addition to model plants, the microRNAs (miRNAs) have been identified in different crop species. In this work, we developed a specific pipeline to search for coffee miRNA homologs on expressed sequence tags (ESTs) and genome survey sequences (GSS) databases. As a result, 36 microRNAs were identified and a total of 616 and 362 potential targets for Coffea arabica and Coffea canephora, respectively. The evolutionary analyses of these molecules were performed by comparing the primary and secondary structures of precursors and mature miRNAs with their orthologs. Moreover, using a stem-loop RT-PCR assay, we evaluated the accumulation of mature miRNAs in genomes with different ploidy levels, detecting an increase in the miRNAs accumulation according to the ploidy raising. Finally, a 5' RACE (Rapid Amplification of cDNA Ends) assay was performed to verify the regulation of auxin responsive factor 8 (ARF8) by MIR167 in coffee plants. The great variety of target genes indicates the functional plasticity of these molecules and reinforces the importance of understanding the RNAi-dependent regulatory mechanisms. Our results expand the study of miRNAs and their target genes in this crop, providing new challenges to understand the biology of these species.

  20. Conservation genetics of evolutionary lineages of the endangered mountain yellow-legged frog, Rana muscosa (Amphibia: Ranidae), in southern California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schoville, Sean D.; Tustall, Tate S.; Vredenburg, Vance T.; Backlin, Adam R.; Gallegos, Elizabeth; Wood, Dustin A.; Fisher, Robert N.

    2011-01-01

    Severe population declines led to the listing of southern California Rana muscosa (Ranidae) as endangered in 2002. Nine small populations inhabit watersheds in three isolated mountain ranges, the San Gabriel, San Bernardino and San Jacinto. One population from the Dark Canyon tributary in the San Jacinto Mountains has been used to establish a captive breeding population at the San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research. Because these populations may still be declining, it is critical to gather information on how genetic variation is structured in these populations and what historical inter-population connectivity existed between populations. Additionally, it is not clear whether these populations are rapidly losing genetic diversity due to population bottlenecks. Using mitochondrial and microsatellite data, we examine patterns of genetic variation in southern California and one of the last remaining populations of R. muscosa in the southern Sierra Nevada. We find low levels of genetic variation within each population and evidence of genetic bottlenecks. Additionally, substantial population structure is evident, suggesting a high degree of historical isolation within and between mountain ranges. Based on estimates from a multi-population isolation with migration analysis, these populations diversified during glacial episodes of the Pleistocene, with little gene flow during population divergence. Our data demonstrate that unique evolutionary lineages of R. muscosa occupy each mountain range in southern California and should be managed separately. The captive breeding program at Dark Canyon is promising, although mitigating the loss of neutral genetic diversity relative to the natural population might require additional breeding frogs.

  1. Genome-Wide Identification, Evolutionary and Expression Analyses of the GALACTINOL SYNTHASE Gene Family in Rapeseed and Tobacco

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    Yonghai Fan

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Galactinol synthase (GolS is a key enzyme in raffinose family oligosaccharide (RFO biosynthesis. The finding that GolS accumulates in plants exposed to abiotic stresses indicates RFOs function in environmental adaptation. However, the evolutionary relationships and biological functions of GolS family in rapeseed (Brassica napus and tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum remain unclear. In this study, we identified 20 BnGolS and 9 NtGolS genes. Subcellular localization predictions showed that most of the proteins are localized to the cytoplasm. Phylogenetic analysis identified a lost event of an ancient GolS copy in the Solanaceae and an ancient duplication event leading to evolution of GolS4/7 in the Brassicaceae. The three-dimensional structures of two GolS proteins were conserved, with an important DxD motif for binding to UDP-galactose (uridine diphosphate-galactose and inositol. Expression profile analysis indicated that BnGolS and NtGolS genes were expressed in most tissues and highly expressed in one or two specific tissues. Hormone treatments strongly induced the expression of most BnGolS genes and homologous genes in the same subfamilies exhibited divergent-induced expression. Our study provides a comprehensive evolutionary analysis of GolS genes among the Brassicaceae and Solanaceae as well as an insight into the biological function of GolS genes in hormone response in plants.

  2. Diversity in conserved genes in tomato

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Deynze, Allen; Stoffel, Kevin; Buell, C Robin; Kozik, Alexander; Liu, Jia; van der Knaap, Esther; Francis, David

    2007-01-01

    Background Tomato has excellent genetic and genomic resources including a broad set of Expressed Sequence Tag (EST) data and high-density genetic maps. In addition, emerging physical maps and bacterial artificial clone sequence data serve as template to investigate genetic variation within the cultivated germplasm pool with the goal to manipulate agriculturally important traits. Unfortunately, the nearly exclusive focus of resource development on interspecific populations for genetic analyses and diversity studies has left a void in our understanding of genotypic variation within tomato breeding programs that focus on intra-specific populations. We describe the results of a study to identify nucleotide variation within tomato breeding germplasm and mapping parents for a set of conserved single-copy ESTs that are orthologous between tomato and Arabidopsis. Results Using a pooled sequencing strategy, 967 tomato transcripts were screened for polymorphism in 12 tomato lines. Although intron position was conserved, intron lengths were 2-fold larger in tomato than in Arabidopsis. A total of 1,487 single nucleotide polymorphisms and 282 insertion/deletions were identified, of which 579 and 206 were polymorphic in breeding germplasm, respectively. Fresh market and processing germplasm were clearly divergent, as were Solanum lycopersicum var. cerasiformae and Solanum pimpinellifolium, tomato's closest relatives. The polymorphisms identified serve as marker resources for tomato. The COS is also applicable to other Solanaceae crops. Conclusions The results from this research enabled significant progress towards bridging the gap between genetic and genomic resources developed for populations derived from wide crosses and those applicable to intra-specific crosses for breeding in tomato. PMID:18088428

  3. Targeting Conserved Genes in Alternaria Species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavón, Miguel Ángel; López-Calleja, Inés María; González, Isabel; Martín, Rosario; García, Teresa

    2017-01-01

    Real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is a molecular biology technique based on the detection of the fluorescence produced by a reporter molecule, which increases as the reaction proceeds proportionally to the accumulation of the PCR product within each amplification cycle. The fluorescent reporter molecules include dyes that bind to the double-stranded DNA (i.e., SYBR ® Green) or sequence-specific probes (i.e., Molecular Beacons or TaqMan ® Probes). Real-time PCR provides a tool for accurate and sensitive quantification of target fungal DNA. Here, we describe a TaqMan real-time PCR method for specific detection and quantification of Alternaria spp. The method uses Alternaria-specific primers and probe, targeting the internal transcribed spacer regions ITS1 and ITS2 of the rRNA gene, and a positive amplification control based on 18S rRNA gene.

  4. Evolutionary history of human disease genes reveals phenotypic connections and comorbidity among genetic diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Solip; Yang, Jae-Seong; Kim, Jinho; Shin, Young-Eun; Hwang, Jihye; Park, Juyong; Jang, Sung Key; Kim, Sanguk

    2012-10-01

    The extent to which evolutionary changes have impacted the phenotypic relationships among human diseases remains unclear. In this work, we report that phenotypically similar diseases are connected by the evolutionary constraints on human disease genes. Human disease groups can be classified into slowly or rapidly evolving classes, where the diseases in the slowly evolving class are enriched with morphological phenotypes and those in the rapidly evolving class are enriched with physiological phenotypes. Our findings establish a clear evolutionary connection between disease classes and disease phenotypes for the first time. Furthermore, the high comorbidity found between diseases connected by similar evolutionary constraints enables us to improve the predictability of the relative risk of human diseases. We find the evolutionary constraints on disease genes are a new layer of molecular connection in the network-based exploration of human diseases.

  5. Evolutionary conserved role of c-Jun-N-terminal kinase in CO2-induced epithelial dysfunction.

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    István Vadász

    Full Text Available Elevated CO(2 levels (hypercapnia occur in patients with respiratory diseases and impair alveolar epithelial integrity, in part, by inhibiting Na,K-ATPase function. Here, we examined the role of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK in CO(2 signaling in mammalian alveolar epithelial cells as well as in diptera, nematodes and rodent lungs. In alveolar epithelial cells, elevated CO(2 levels rapidly induced activation of JNK leading to downregulation of Na,K-ATPase and alveolar epithelial dysfunction. Hypercapnia-induced activation of JNK required AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK and protein kinase C-ζ leading to subsequent phosphorylation of JNK at Ser-129. Importantly, elevated CO(2 levels also caused a rapid and prominent activation of JNK in Drosophila S2 cells and in C. elegans. Paralleling the results with mammalian epithelial cells, RNAi against Drosophila JNK fully prevented CO(2-induced downregulation of Na,K-ATPase in Drosophila S2 cells. The importance and specificity of JNK CO(2 signaling was additionally demonstrated by the ability of mutations in the C. elegans JNK homologs, jnk-1 and kgb-2 to partially rescue the hypercapnia-induced fertility defects but not the pharyngeal pumping defects. Together, these data provide evidence that deleterious effects of hypercapnia are mediated by JNK which plays an evolutionary conserved, specific role in CO(2 signaling in mammals, diptera and nematodes.

  6. Gene genealogies indicates abundant gene conversions and independent evolutionary histories of the mating-type chromosomes in the evolutionary history of Neurospora tetrasperma

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    Whittle Carrie A

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The self-fertile filamentous ascomycete Neurospora tetrasperma contains a large (~7 Mbp and young (mat chromosomes. The objective of the present study is to reveal the evolutionary history, including key genomic events, associated with the various regions of the mat chromosomes among ten strains representing all the nine known species (lineages contained within the N. tetrasperma species complex. Results Comparative analysis of sequence divergence among alleles of 24 mat-linked genes (mat A and mat a indicates that a large region of suppressed recombination exists within the mat chromosome for each of nine lineages of N. tetrasperma sensu latu. The recombinationally suppressed region varies in size and gene composition among lineages, and is flanked on both ends by normally recombining regions. Genealogical analyses among lineages reveals that eight gene conversion events have occurred between homologous mat A and mat a-linked alleles of genes located within the region of restricted recombination during the evolutionary history of N. tetrasperma. Conclusions We conclude that the region of suppressed recombination in the mat chromosomes has likely been subjected to independent contraction and/or expansion during the evolutionary history of the N. tetrasperma species complex. Furthermore, we infer that gene conversion events are likely a common phenomenon within this recombinationally suppressed genomic region. We argue that gene conversions might provide an efficient mechanism of adaptive editing of functional genes, including the removal of deleterious mutations, within the young recombinationally suppressed region of the mat chromosomes.

  7. Evolutionary Conservation and Diversification of the Translation Initiation Apparatus in Trypanosomatids

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    Alexandra Zinoviev

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Trypanosomatids are ancient eukaryotic parasites that migrate between insect vectors and mammalian hosts, causing a range of diseases in humans and domestic animals. Trypanosomatids feature a multitude of unusual molecular features, including polycistronic transcription and subsequent processing by trans-splicing and polyadenylation. Regulation of protein coding genes is posttranscriptional and thus, translation regulation is fundamental for activating the developmental program of gene expression. The spliced-leader RNA is attached to all mRNAs. It contains an unusual hypermethylated cap-4 structure in its 5 end. The cap-binding complex, eIF4F, has gone through evolutionary changes in accordance with the requirement to bind cap-4. The eIF4F components in trypanosomatids are highly diverged from their orthologs in higher eukaryotes, and their potential functions are discussed. The cap-binding activity in all eukaryotes is a target for regulation and plays a similar role in trypanosomatids. Recent studies revealed a novel eIF4E-interacting protein, involved in directing stage-specific and stress-induced translation pathways. Translation regulation during stress also follows unusual regulatory cues, as the increased translation of Hsp83 following heat stress is driven by a defined element in the 3 UTR, unlike higher eukaryotes. Overall, the environmental switches experienced by trypanosomatids during their life cycle seem to affect their translational machinery in unique ways.

  8. Conservation of regional gene expression in mouse and human brain.

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    Andrew D Strand

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available Many neurodegenerative diseases have a hallmark regional and cellular pathology. Gene expression analysis of healthy tissues may provide clues to the differences that distinguish resistant and sensitive tissues and cell types. Comparative analysis of gene expression in healthy mouse and human brain provides a framework to explore the ability of mice to model diseases of the human brain. It may also aid in understanding brain evolution and the basis for higher order cognitive abilities. Here we compare gene expression profiles of human motor cortex, caudate nucleus, and cerebellum to one another and identify genes that are more highly expressed in one region relative to another. We separately perform identical analysis on corresponding brain regions from mice. Within each species, we find that the different brain regions have distinctly different expression profiles. Contrasting between the two species shows that regionally enriched genes in one species are generally regionally enriched genes in the other species. Thus, even when considering thousands of genes, the expression ratios in two regions from one species are significantly correlated with expression ratios in the other species. Finally, genes whose expression is higher in one area of the brain relative to the other areas, in other words genes with patterned expression, tend to have greater conservation of nucleotide sequence than more widely expressed genes. Together these observations suggest that region-specific genes have been conserved in the mammalian brain at both the sequence and gene expression levels. Given the general similarity between patterns of gene expression in healthy human and mouse brains, we believe it is reasonable to expect a high degree of concordance between microarray phenotypes of human neurodegenerative diseases and their mouse models. Finally, these data on very divergent species provide context for studies in more closely related species that address

  9. Contributions of public gardens to tree gene conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    P.A. Allenstein

    2017-01-01

    American Public Gardens Association, founded in 1940, represents over 600 member gardens spanning North America and 24 countries. Its diverse membership includes botanic gardens, arboreta, and other public gardens which contribute to tree gene conservation. Some maintain ex situ collections nationally accredited through the Association’s Plant Collections Network, a 21...

  10. Language as genes of culture and biodiversity conservation: The ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    These findings prove noticeable gradual decline in the use of Zaysite language. Losses of vocabularies, as social genes of culture and some words becoming obsolete have not only negative impacts on the proficiency and communicative functions of the language, but also on the biodiversity conservation because life in a ...

  11. Seed collection success and failure in fraxinus gene conservation efforts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joseph D. Zeleznik; Andrew J. David

    2017-01-01

    National seed collection and gene conservation programs have expanded in recent years, especially in response to pressure from non-native pests such as the emerald ash borer (Agrilus planipennis). Since 2008, we have been working with the U.S. Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service (USDA ARS) and USDA Forest Service (USDA FS) leading seed collection...

  12. Predicting DNA-binding amino acid residues from electrostatic stabilization upon mutation to Asp/Glu and evolutionary conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yao Chi; Wu, Chih Yuan; Lim, Carmay

    2007-05-15

    Binding of polyanionic DNA depends on the cluster of electropositive atoms in the binding site of a DNA-binding protein. Such a cluster of electropositive protein atoms would be electrostatically unfavorable without stabilizing interactions from the respective electronegative DNA atoms and would likely be evolutionary conserved due to its critical biological role. Consequently, our strategy for predicting DNA-binding residues is based on detecting a cluster of evolutionary conserved surface residues that are electrostatically stabilized upon mutation to negatively charged Asp/Glu residues. The method requires as input the protein structure and sufficient sequence homologs to define each residue's relative conservation, and it yields as output experimentally testable residues that are predicted to bind DNA. By incorporating characteristic DNA-binding site features (i.e., electrostatic strain and amino acid conservation), the new method yields a prediction accuracy of 83%, which is much higher than methods based on only electrostatic strain (57%) or conservation alone (50%). It is also less sensitive to protein conformational changes upon DNA binding than methods that mainly depend on the 3D protein structure. 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  13. Evolutionary refugia and ecological refuges: key concepts for conserving Australian arid zone freshwater biodiversity under climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Jenny; Pavlova, Alexandra; Thompson, Ross; Sunnucks, Paul

    2013-07-01

    Refugia have been suggested as priority sites for conservation under climate change because of their ability to facilitate survival of biota under adverse conditions. Here, we review the likely role of refugial habitats in conserving freshwater biota in arid Australian aquatic systems where the major long-term climatic influence has been aridification. We introduce a conceptual model that characterizes evolutionary refugia and ecological refugees based on our review of the attributes of aquatic habitats and freshwater taxa (fishes and aquatic invertebrates) in arid Australia. We also identify methods of recognizing likely future refugia and approaches to assessing the vulnerability of arid-adapted freshwater biota to a warming and drying climate. Evolutionary refugia in arid areas are characterized as permanent, groundwater-dependent habitats (subterranean aquifers and springs) supporting vicariant relicts and short-range endemics. Ecological refugees can vary across space and time, depending on the dispersal abilities of aquatic taxa and the geographical proximity and hydrological connectivity of aquatic habitats. The most important are the perennial waterbodies (both groundwater and surface water fed) that support obligate aquatic organisms. These species will persist where suitable habitats are available and dispersal pathways are maintained. For very mobile species (invertebrates with an aerial dispersal phase) evolutionary refugia may also act as ecological refugees. Evolutionary refugia are likely future refugia because their water source (groundwater) is decoupled from local precipitation. However, their biota is extremely vulnerable to changes in local conditions because population extinction risks cannot be abated by the dispersal of individuals from other sites. Conservation planning must incorporate a high level of protection for aquifers that support refugial sites. Ecological refuges are vulnerable to changes in regional climate because they have

  14. Mutational Studies on Resurrected Ancestral Proteins Reveal Conservation of Site-Specific Amino Acid Preferences throughout Evolutionary History

    Science.gov (United States)

    Risso, Valeria A.; Manssour-Triedo, Fadia; Delgado-Delgado, Asunción; Arco, Rocio; Barroso-delJesus, Alicia; Ingles-Prieto, Alvaro; Godoy-Ruiz, Raquel; Gavira, Jose A.; Gaucher, Eric A.; Ibarra-Molero, Beatriz; Sanchez-Ruiz, Jose M.

    2015-01-01

    Local protein interactions (“molecular context” effects) dictate amino acid replacements and can be described in terms of site-specific, energetic preferences for any different amino acid. It has been recently debated whether these preferences remain approximately constant during evolution or whether, due to coevolution of sites, they change strongly. Such research highlights an unresolved and fundamental issue with far-reaching implications for phylogenetic analysis and molecular evolution modeling. Here, we take advantage of the recent availability of phenotypically supported laboratory resurrections of Precambrian thioredoxins and β-lactamases to experimentally address the change of site-specific amino acid preferences over long geological timescales. Extensive mutational analyses support the notion that evolutionary adjustment to a new amino acid may occur, but to a large extent this is insufficient to erase the primitive preference for amino acid replacements. Generally, site-specific amino acid preferences appear to remain conserved throughout evolutionary history despite local sequence divergence. We show such preference conservation to be readily understandable in molecular terms and we provide crystallographic evidence for an intriguing structural-switch mechanism: Energetic preference for an ancestral amino acid in a modern protein can be linked to reorganization upon mutation to the ancestral local structure around the mutated site. Finally, we point out that site-specific preference conservation naturally leads to one plausible evolutionary explanation for the existence of intragenic global suppressor mutations. PMID:25392342

  15. Tracing evolutionary relicts of positive selection on eight malaria-related immune genes in mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Bing-Hong; Liao, Pei-Chun

    2015-07-01

    Plasmodium-induced malaria widely infects primates and other mammals. Multiple past studies have revealed that positive selection could be the main evolutionary force triggering the genetic diversity of anti-malaria resistance-associated genes in human or primates. However, researchers focused most of their attention on the infra-generic and intra-specific genome evolution rather than analyzing the complete evolutionary history of mammals. Here we extend previous research by testing the evolutionary link of natural selection on eight candidate genes associated with malaria resistance in mammals. Three of the eight genes were detected to be affected by recombination, including TNF-α, iNOS and DARC. Positive selection was detected in the rest five immunogenes multiple times in different ancestral lineages of extant species throughout the mammalian evolution. Signals of positive selection were exposed in four malaria-related immunogenes in primates: CCL2, IL-10, HO1 and CD36. However, selection signals of G6PD have only been detected in non-primate eutherians. Significantly higher evolutionary rates and more radical amino acid replacement were also detected in primate CD36, suggesting its functional divergence from other eutherians. Prevalent positive selection throughout the evolutionary trajectory of mammalian malaria-related genes supports the arms race evolutionary hypothesis of host genetic response of mammalian immunogenes to infectious pathogens. © The Author(s) 2014 Reprints and permissions: sagepub.co.uk/journalsPermissions.nav.

  16. Conservation of the Exon-Intron Structure of Long Intergenic Non-Coding RNA Genes in Eutherian Mammals

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    Diana Chernikova

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The abundance of mammalian long intergenic non-coding RNA (lincRNA genes is high, yet their functions remain largely unknown. One possible way to study this important question is to use large-scale comparisons of various characteristics of lincRNA with those of protein-coding genes for which a large body of functional information is available. A prominent feature of mammalian protein-coding genes is the high evolutionary conservation of the exon-intron structure. Comparative analysis of putative intron positions in lincRNA genes from various mammalian genomes suggests that some lincRNA introns have been conserved for over 100 million years, thus the primary and/or secondary structure of these molecules is likely to be functionally important.

  17. Conserved Units of Co-Expression in Bacterial Genomes: An Evolutionary Insight into Transcriptional Regulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Junier, Ivan; Rivoire, Olivier

    2016-01-01

    Genome-wide measurements of transcriptional activity in bacteria indicate that the transcription of successive genes is strongly correlated beyond the scale of operons. Here, we analyze hundreds of bacterial genomes to identify supra-operonic segments of genes that are proximal in a large number of genomes. We show that these synteny segments correspond to genomic units of strong transcriptional co-expression. Structurally, the segments contain operons with specific relative orientations (co-directional or divergent) and nucleoid-associated proteins are found to bind at their boundaries. Functionally, operons inside a same segment are highly co-expressed even in the apparent absence of regulatory factors at their promoter regions. Remote operons along DNA can also be co-expressed if their corresponding segments share a transcriptional or sigma factor, without requiring these factors to bind directly to the promoters of the operons. As evidence that these results apply across the bacterial kingdom, we demonstrate them both in the Gram-negative bacterium Escherichia coli and in the Gram-positive bacterium Bacillus subtilis. The underlying process that we propose involves only RNA-polymerases and DNA: it implies that the transcription of an operon mechanically enhances the transcription of adjacent operons. In support of a primary role of this regulation by facilitated co-transcription, we show that the transcription en bloc of successive operons as a result of transcriptional read-through is strongly and specifically enhanced in synteny segments. Finally, our analysis indicates that facilitated co-transcription may be evolutionary primitive and may apply beyond bacteria. PMID:27195891

  18. Evolutionary hallmarks of the human proteome: chasing the age and coregulation of protein-coding genes

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    Katia de Paiva Lopes

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The development of large-scale technologies for quantitative transcriptomics has enabled comprehensive analysis of the gene expression profiles in complete genomes. RNA-Seq allows the measurement of gene expression levels in a manner far more precise and global than previous methods. Studies using this technology are altering our view about the extent and complexity of the eukaryotic transcriptomes. In this respect, multiple efforts have been done to determine and analyse the gene expression patterns of human cell types in different conditions, either in normal or pathological states. However, until recently, little has been reported about the evolutionary marks present in human protein-coding genes, particularly from the combined perspective of gene expression and protein evolution. Results We present a combined analysis of human protein-coding gene expression profiling and time-scale ancestry mapping, that places the genes in taxonomy clades and reveals eight evolutionary major steps (“hallmarks”, that include clusters of functionally coherent proteins. The human expressed genes are analysed using a RNA-Seq dataset of 116 samples from 32 tissues. The evolutionary analysis of the human proteins is performed combining the information from: (i a database of orthologous proteins (OMA, (ii the taxonomy mapping of genes to lineage clades (from NCBI Taxonomy and (iii the evolution time-scale mapping provided by TimeTree (Timescale of Life. The human protein-coding genes are also placed in a relational context based in the construction of a robust gene coexpression network, that reveals tighter links between age-related protein-coding genes and finds functionally coherent gene modules. Conclusions Understanding the relational landscape of the human protein-coding genes is essential for interpreting the functional elements and modules of our active genome. Moreover, decoding the evolutionary history of the human genes can

  19. Evolutionary meta-analysis of solanaceous resistance gene and solanum resistance gene analog sequences and a practical framework for cross-species comparisons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quirin, Edmund A; Mann, Harpartap; Meyer, Rachel S; Traini, Alessandra; Chiusano, Maria Luisa; Litt, Amy; Bradeen, James M

    2012-05-01

    Cross-species comparative genomics approaches have been employed to map and clone many important disease resistance (R) genes from Solanum species-especially wild relatives of potato and tomato. These efforts will increase with the recent release of potato genome sequence and the impending release of tomato genome sequence. Most R genes belong to the prominent nucleotide binding site-leucine rich repeat (NBS-LRR) class and conserved NBS-LRR protein motifs enable survey of the R gene space of a plant genome by generation of resistance gene analogs (RGA), polymerase chain reaction fragments derived from R genes. We generated a collection of 97 RGA from the disease-resistant wild potato S. bulbocastanum, complementing smaller collections from other Solanum species. To further comparative genomics approaches, we combined all known Solanum RGA and cloned solanaceous NBS-LRR gene sequences, nearly 800 sequences in total, into a single meta-analysis. We defined R gene diversity bins that reflect both evolutionary relationships and DNA cross-hybridization results. The resulting framework is amendable and expandable, providing the research community with a common vocabulary for present and future study of R gene lineages. Through a series of sequence and hybridization experiments, we demonstrate that all tested R gene lineages are of ancient origin, are shared between Solanum species, and can be successfully accessed via comparative genomics approaches.

  20. Evolutionary divergence and functions of the human interleukin (IL) gene family

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    Cytokines play a very important role in nearly all aspects of inflammation and immunity. The term 'interleukin' (IL) has been used to describe a group of cytokines with complex immunomodulatory functions -- including cell proliferation, maturation, migration and adhesion. These cytokines also play an important role in immune cell differentiation and activation. Determining the exact function of a particular cytokine is complicated by the influence of the producing cell type, the responding cell type and the phase of the immune response. ILs can also have pro- and anti-inflammatory effects, further complicating their characterisation. These molecules are under constant pressure to evolve due to continual competition between the host's immune system and infecting organisms; as such, ILs have undergone significant evolution. This has resulted in little amino acid conservation between orthologous proteins, which further complicates the gene family organisation. Within the literature there are a number of overlapping nomenclature and classification systems derived from biological function, receptor-binding properties and originating cell type. Determining evolutionary relationships between ILs therefore can be confusing. More recently, crystallographic data and the identification of common structural motifs have led to a more accurate classification system. To date, the known ILs can be divided into four major groups based on distinguishing structural features. These groups include the genes encoding the IL1-like cytokines, the class I helical cytokines (IL4-like, γ-chain and IL6/12-like), the class II helical cytokines (IL10-like and IL28-like) and the IL17-like cytokines. In addition, there are a number of ILs that do not fit into any of the above groups, due either to their unique structural features or lack of structural information. This suggests that the gene family organisation may be subject to further change in the near future. PMID:21106488

  1. Genome-wide analysis of rice dehydrin gene family: Its evolutionary conservedness and expression pattern in response to PEG induced dehydration stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verma, Giti; Dhar, Yogeshwar Vikram; Srivastava, Dipali; Kidwai, Maria; Chauhan, Puneet Singh; Bag, Sumit Kumar; Asif, Mehar Hasan; Chakrabarty, Debasis

    2017-01-01

    Abiotic stresses adversely affect cellular homeostasis, impairing overall growth and development of plants. These initial stress signals activate downstream signalling processes, which, subsequently, activate stress-responsive mechanisms to re-establish homeostasis. Dehydrins (DHNs) play an important role in combating dehydration stress. Rice (Oryza sativa L.), which is a paddy crop, is susceptible to drought stress. As drought survival in rice might be viewed as a trait with strong evolutionary selection pressure, we observed DHNs in the light of domestication during the course of evolution. Overall, 65 DHNs were identified by a genome-wide survey of 11 rice species, and 3 DHNs were found to be highly conserved. The correlation of a conserved pattern of DHNs with domestication and diversification of wild to cultivated rice was validated by synonymous substitution rates, indicating that Oryza rufipogon and Oryza sativa ssp. japonica follow an adaptive evolutionary pattern; whereas Oryza nivara and Oryza sativa ssp. indica demonstrate a conserved evolutionary pattern. A comprehensive analysis of tissue-specific expression of DHN genes in japonica and their expression profiles in normal and PEG (poly ethylene glycol)-induced dehydration stress exhibited a spatiotemporal expression pattern. Their interaction network reflects the cross-talk between gene expression and the physiological processes mediating adaptation to dehydration stress. The results obtained strongly indicated the importance of DHNs, as they are conserved during the course of domestication.

  2. Genome-wide analysis of rice dehydrin gene family: Its evolutionary conservedness and expression pattern in response to PEG induced dehydration stress.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giti Verma

    Full Text Available Abiotic stresses adversely affect cellular homeostasis, impairing overall growth and development of plants. These initial stress signals activate downstream signalling processes, which, subsequently, activate stress-responsive mechanisms to re-establish homeostasis. Dehydrins (DHNs play an important role in combating dehydration stress. Rice (Oryza sativa L., which is a paddy crop, is susceptible to drought stress. As drought survival in rice might be viewed as a trait with strong evolutionary selection pressure, we observed DHNs in the light of domestication during the course of evolution. Overall, 65 DHNs were identified by a genome-wide survey of 11 rice species, and 3 DHNs were found to be highly conserved. The correlation of a conserved pattern of DHNs with domestication and diversification of wild to cultivated rice was validated by synonymous substitution rates, indicating that Oryza rufipogon and Oryza sativa ssp. japonica follow an adaptive evolutionary pattern; whereas Oryza nivara and Oryza sativa ssp. indica demonstrate a conserved evolutionary pattern. A comprehensive analysis of tissue-specific expression of DHN genes in japonica and their expression profiles in normal and PEG (poly ethylene glycol-induced dehydration stress exhibited a spatiotemporal expression pattern. Their interaction network reflects the cross-talk between gene expression and the physiological processes mediating adaptation to dehydration stress. The results obtained strongly indicated the importance of DHNs, as they are conserved during the course of domestication.

  3. Evolutionary, neurobiological, gene-based solution of the ideological "puzzle" of human altruism and cooperation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baschetti, Riccardo

    2007-01-01

    Despite hundreds of published articles about humankind's eusocial behaviours, most scholars still regard the origin of human altruism and cooperation as an enduring puzzle, because it seems incompatible with two central tenets of evolution, namely, the competition between individuals and the consequent selective advantages of selfish traits. This "puzzle", however, rather than being due to insurmountable scientific difficulties, is to be attributed to two powerful ideologies, which are politically opposite, but nevertheless concurred to prevent scholars from solving it. One ideology rejects the concept of genetic determinism, whereas the other dislikes the concept of group selection. As a consequence, these widespread ideologies, which are common in the scientific community, too, kept scholars from realising that the puzzle of human altruism and cooperation can only be solved by proposing a theoretical model that is based precisely on both genetic determinism and group selection. This model, which was never advanced in published papers, is presented here. This article also proposes to regard ancestral environments as determinants of human eusociality. By contrast, virtually all previous articles about it leave primitive habitats unmentioned. To support the hypothesis that human unselfish behaviours represent genetically conserved traits that evolved ancestrally, not products of cultural transmission, this paper also discusses six groups of arguments in the section "Genes versus culture". Finally, this article advances a purely genetic evolutionary explanation for the uniqueness of human eusociality, thereby challenging prevailing cultural explanations for the incomparably developed levels of cooperation in humankind, which are observed in no other social species.

  4. Gene essentiality, conservation index and co-evolution of genes in cyanobacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tiruveedula, Gopi Siva Sai; Wangikar, Pramod P

    2017-01-01

    Cyanobacteria, a group of photosynthetic prokaryotes, dominate the earth with ~ 1015 g wet biomass. Despite diversity in habitats and an ancient origin, cyanobacterial phylum has retained a significant core genome. Cyanobacteria are being explored for direct conversion of solar energy and carbon dioxide into biofuels. For this, efficient cyanobacterial strains will need to be designed via metabolic engineering. This will require identification of target knockouts to channelize the flow of carbon toward the product of interest while minimizing deletions of essential genes. We propose "Gene Conservation Index" (GCI) as a quick measure to predict gene essentiality in cyanobacteria. GCI is based on phylogenetic profile of a gene constructed with a reduced dataset of cyanobacterial genomes. GCI is the percentage of organism clusters in which the query gene is present in the reduced dataset. Of the 750 genes deemed to be essential in the experimental study on S. elongatus PCC 7942, we found 494 to be conserved across the phylum which largely comprise of the essential metabolic pathways. On the contrary, the conserved but non-essential genes broadly comprise of genes required under stress conditions. Exceptions to this rule include genes such as the glycogen synthesis and degradation enzymes, deoxyribose-phosphate aldolase (DERA), glucose-6-phosphate 1-dehydrogenase (zwf) and fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase class1, which are conserved but non-essential. While the essential genes are to be avoided during gene knockout studies as potentially lethal deletions, the non-essential but conserved set of genes could be interesting targets for metabolic engineering. Further, we identify clusters of co-evolving genes (CCG), which provide insights that may be useful in annotation. Principal component analysis (PCA) plots of the CCGs are demonstrated as data visualization tools that are complementary to the conventional heatmaps. Our dataset consists of phylogenetic profiles for 23

  5. All the three ParaHox genes are present in Nuttallochiton mirandus (Mollusca: polyplacophora): evolutionary considerations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barucca, Marco; Biscotti, Maria A; Olmo, Ettore; Canapa, Adriana

    2006-03-15

    The ParaHox gene cluster contains three homeobox genes, Gsx, Xlox and Cdx and has been demonstrated to be an evolutionary sister of the Hox gene cluster. Among deuterostomes the three genes are found in the majority of taxa, whereas among protostomes they have so far been isolated only in the phylum Sipuncula. We report the partial sequences of all three ParaHox genes in the polyplacophoran Nuttallochiton mirandus, the first species of the phylum Mollusca where all ParaHox genes have been isolated. This finding has phylogenetic implications for the phylum Mollusca and for its relationships with the other lophotrochozoan taxa. Copyright 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  6. Evolutionary Origins of Cancer Driver Genes and Implications for Cancer Prognosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chu, Xin-Yi; Jiang, Ling-Han; Zhou, Xiong-Hui; Cui, Ze-Jia; Zhang, Hong-Yu

    2017-07-14

    The cancer atavistic theory suggests that carcinogenesis is a reverse evolution process. It is thus of great interest to explore the evolutionary origins of cancer driver genes and the relevant mechanisms underlying the carcinogenesis. Moreover, the evolutionary features of cancer driver genes could be helpful in selecting cancer biomarkers from high-throughput data. In this study, through analyzing the cancer endogenous molecular networks, we revealed that the subnetwork originating from eukaryota could control the unlimited proliferation of cancer cells, and the subnetwork originating from eumetazoa could recapitulate the other hallmarks of cancer. In addition, investigations based on multiple datasets revealed that cancer driver genes were enriched in genes originating from eukaryota, opisthokonta, and eumetazoa. These results have important implications for enhancing the robustness of cancer prognosis models through selecting the gene signatures by the gene age information.

  7. Conservation and evolutionary divergence in the activity of receptor-regulated smads

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sorrentino Gina M

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Activity of the Transforming growth factor-β (TGFβ pathway is essential to the establishment of body axes and tissue differentiation in bilaterians. Orthologs for core pathway members have been found in all metazoans, but uncertain homology of the body axes and tissues patterned by these signals raises questions about the activities of these molecules across the metazoan tree. We focus on the principal canonical transduction proteins (R-Smads of the TGFβ pathway, which instruct both axial patterning and tissue differentiation in the developing embryo. We compare the activity of R-Smads from a cnidarian (Nematostella vectensis, an arthropod (Drosophila melanogaster, and a vertebrate (Xenopus laevis in Xenopus embryonic assays. Results Overexpressing NvSmad1/5 ventralized Xenopus embryos when expressed in dorsal blastomeres, similar to the effects of Xenopus Smad1. However, NvSmad1/5 was less potent than XSmad1 in its ability to activate downstream target genes in Xenopus animal cap assays. NvSmad2/3 strongly induced general mesendodermal marker genes, but weakly induced ones involved in specifying the Spemann organizer. NvSmad2/3 was unable to induce a secondary trunk axis in Xenopus embryos, whereas the orthologs from Xenopus (XSmad2 and XSmad3 and Drosophila (dSmad2 were capable of doing so. Replacement of the NvSmad2/3 MH2 domain with the Xenopus XSmad2 MH2 slightly increased its inductive capability, but did not confer an ability to generate a secondary body axis. Conclusions Vertebrate and cnidarian Smad1/5 have similar axial patterning and induction activities, although NvSmad1/5 is less efficient than the vertebrate gene. We conclude that the activities of Smad1/5 orthologs have been largely conserved across Metazoa. NvSmad2/3 efficiently activates general mesendoderm markers, but is unable to induce vertebrate organizer-specific genes or to produce a secondary body axis in Xenopus. Orthologs dSmad2 and XSmad3

  8. Evolutionary and Expression Analyses Show Co-option of khdrbs Genes for Origin of Vertebrate Brain

    OpenAIRE

    Su Wang; Su Wang; Qingyun Yang; Qingyun Yang; Ziyue Wang; Ziyue Wang; Shuoqi Feng; Shuoqi Feng; Hongyan Li; Hongyan Li; Dongrui Ji; Dongrui Ji; Shicui Zhang; Shicui Zhang

    2018-01-01

    Genes generated by whole genome duplications (WGD) can be co-opted by changing their regulation process or altering their coding proteins, which has been shown contributable to the emergence of vertebrate morphological novelties such as vertebrate cartilage. Mouse khdrbs genes, differing from its invertebrate orthologs, were mainly expressed in brain, hinting that khdrbs gene family as a member of genetic toolkit may be linked to vertebrate brain development. However, the evolutionary relatio...

  9. cDNA cloning and chromosomal mapping of the mouse type VII collagen gene (Col7a1): Evidence for rapid evolutionary divergence of the gene

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Kehua; Christiano, A.M.; Chu, Mon Li; Uitto, J. (Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia, PA (United States) Thomas Jefferson Univ., Philadelphia, PA (United States)); Copeland, N.G.; Gilbert, D.J. (NCI-Federick Cancer Research and Development Center, Federick, MD (United States))

    1993-06-01

    Type VII collagen is the major component of anchoring fibrils, critical attachment structures at the dermal-epidermal basement membrane zone. Genetic linkage analyses with recently cloned human type VII collagen cDNAs have indicated that the corresponding gene, COL7A1, is the candidate gene in the dystrophic forms of epidermolysis bullosa. To gain insight into the evolutionary conservation of COL7A1, in this study the authors have isolated mouse type VII collagen cDNAs by screening a mouse epidermal keratinocyte cDNA library with a human COL7A1 cDNA. Two overlapping mouse cDNAs were isolated, and Northern hybridization of mouse epidermal keratinocyte RNA with one of them revealed the presence of a mRNA transcript of [approximately]9.5 kb, the approximate size of the human COL7A1 mRNA. Nucleotide sequencing of the mouse cDNAs revealed a 2760-bp open reading frame that encodes the 5[prime] half of the collagenous domain and a segment of the NC-1, the noncollagenous amino-terminal domain of type VII collagen. Comparison of the mouse amino acid sequences with the corresponding human sequences deduced from cDNAs revealed 82.5% identity. The evolutionary divergence of the gene was relatively rapid in comparison to other collagen genes. Despite the high degree of sequence variation, several sequences, including the size and the position of noncollagenous imperfections and interruptions within the Gly-X-Y repeat sequence, were precisely conserved. Finally, the mouse Col7a1 gene was located by interspecific backcross mapping to mouse Chromosome 9, a region that corresponds to human chromosome 3p21, the position of human COL7Al. This assignment confirms and extends the relationship between the mouse and the human chromosomes in this region of the genome. 33 refs., 5 figs., 1 tab.

  10. [Morphologic variation of the parthenogenetic lizard Aspidoscelis rodecki (Squamata: Teiidae): evolutionary and conservation implications].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elizalde-Rocha, Sandra P; Méndez-de la Cruz, Fausto R; Méndez-Sánchez, J Fernando; Granados-González, Gisela; Hernândez-Gallegos, Oswaldo

    2008-12-01

    Post-formational divergence has been used for the recognition of new parthenogenetic species. Currently, the parthenogenetic lizard Aspidoscelis rodecki McCoy and Maslin 1962 is recognized as a single taxon that was derived from a single, parthenogenetically capable, hybrid. This lizard had been derived via hybridization between individuals of two gonochoristic species, Aspidoscelis ungusticeps Cope 1878 and Aspidoscelis deppii Wiegmann 1834. The distribution of A. rodecki includes Isla Contoy and Isla Mujeres and the adjacent mainland of Quintana Roo, México. Previous studies have found post-formational divergence in genetic, chromatic and life-history characteristics among a continental population (Puerto Juárez) and an insular population (Isla Contoy). A meristic analysis was carried out to evaluate the morphological divergence among both populations of A. rodecki. We used 38 individuals from Puerto Juárez and 23 individuals from Isla Contoy. Nine meristic characters with discrimination value among species of the genus Aspidoscelis were used in both univariate (t-Student) and multivariate analyses (principal components and canonical variate analysis). According to both analyses, Puerto Juárez is meristically distinguishable from Isla Contoy. Both populations differ in five meristic characters and were a high correct classification in the canonical variate analysis: 97% of Puerto Juárez and 100% of Isla Contoy. A small sample from Isla Mujeres and a single specimen from Punta Sam (mainland) may represent different morphological groups. Due to the patterns of phenotypic variation, A. rodecki is considered as a single variable parthenogenetic species with high priority to conservation. The populations of A. rodecki have been extremely affected by the tourism developers. If the habitat of the parthenogenetic lizard (beach grasses) is allowed to stay, the expansion by the developers will not affect the survivorship of these populations. Nevertheless, the first

  11. Evolutionary constraints shape caste-specific gene expression across 15 ant species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morandin, Claire; Mikheyev, Alexander S; Pedersen, Jes Søe; Helanterä, Heikki

    2017-05-01

    Development of polymorphic phenotypes from similar genomes requires gene expression differences. However, little is known about how morph-specific gene expression patterns vary on a broad phylogenetic scale. We hypothesize that evolution of morph-specific gene expression, and consequently morph-specific phenotypic evolution, may be constrained by gene essentiality and the amount of pleiotropic constraints. Here, we use comparative transcriptomics of queen and worker morphs, that is, castes, from 15 ant species to understand the constraints of morph-biased gene expression. In particular, we investigate how measures of evolutionary constraints at the sequence level (expression level, connectivity, and number of gene ontology [GO] terms) correlate with morph-biased expression. Our results show that genes indeed vary in their potential to become morph-biased. The existence of genes that are constrained in becoming caste-biased potentially limits the evolutionary decoupling of the caste phenotypes, that is, it might result in "caste load" occasioning from antagonistic fitness variation, similarly to sexually antagonistic fitness variation between males and females. On the other hand, we suggest that genes under low constraints are released from antagonistic variation and thus more likely to be co-opted for morph specific use. Overall, our results suggest that the factors that affect sequence evolutionary rates and evolution of plastic expression may largely overlap. © 2017 The Author(s). Evolution © 2017 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  12. The importance of gene conservation in the USDA Forest Service

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robert D. Mangold

    2017-01-01

    Aldo Leopold once said “to keep every cog and wheel is the first precaution of intelligent tinkering.” The USDA Forest Service has embarked on a long-term effort to do just that. Our gene conservation efforts in forest trees are a modest beginning to this urgent need. In the early 2000s, the Forest Health Protection Program and its partners in the National Forest...

  13. EST analysis in Ginkgo biloba: an assessment of conserved developmental regulators and gymnosperm specific genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brenner, Eric D; Katari, Manpreet S; Stevenson, Dennis W; Rudd, Stephen A; Douglas, Andrew W; Moss, Walter N; Twigg, Richard W; Runko, Suzan J; Stellari, Giulia M; McCombie, W R; Coruzzi, Gloria M

    2005-10-15

    Ginkgo biloba L. is the only surviving member of one of the oldest living seed plant groups with medicinal, spiritual and horticultural importance worldwide. As an evolutionary relic, it displays many characters found in the early, extinct seed plants and extant cycads. To establish a molecular base to understand the evolution of seeds and pollen, we created a cDNA library and EST dataset from the reproductive structures of male (microsporangiate), female (megasporangiate), and vegetative organs (leaves) of Ginkgo biloba. RNA from newly emerged male and female reproductive organs and immature leaves was used to create three distinct cDNA libraries from which 6,434 ESTs were generated. These 6,434 ESTs from Ginkgo biloba were clustered into 3,830 unigenes. A comparison of our Ginkgo unigene set against the fully annotated genomes of rice and Arabidopsis, and all available ESTs in Genbank revealed that 256 Ginkgo unigenes match only genes among the gymnosperms and non-seed plants--many with multiple matches to genes in non-angiosperm plants. Conversely, another group of unigenes in Gingko had highly significant homology to transcription factors in angiosperms involved in development, including MADS box genes as well as post-transcriptional regulators. Several of the conserved developmental genes found in Ginkgo had top BLAST homology to cycad genes. We also note here the presence of ESTs in G. biloba similar to genes that to date have only been found in gymnosperms and an additional 22 Ginkgo genes common only to genes from cycads. Our analysis of an EST dataset from G. biloba revealed genes potentially unique to gymnosperms. Many of these genes showed homology to fully sequenced clones from our cycad EST dataset found in common only with gymnosperms. Other Ginkgo ESTs are similar to developmental regulators in higher plants. This work sets the stage for future studies on Ginkgo to better understand seed and pollen evolution, and to resolve the ambiguous phylogenetic

  14. Human Intellectual Disability Genes Form Conserved Functional Modules in Drosophila

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oortveld, Merel A. W.; Keerthikumar, Shivakumar; Oti, Martin; Nijhof, Bonnie; Fernandes, Ana Clara; Kochinke, Korinna; Castells-Nobau, Anna; van Engelen, Eva; Ellenkamp, Thijs; Eshuis, Lilian; Galy, Anne; van Bokhoven, Hans; Habermann, Bianca; Brunner, Han G.; Zweier, Christiane; Verstreken, Patrik; Huynen, Martijn A.; Schenck, Annette

    2013-01-01

    Intellectual Disability (ID) disorders, defined by an IQ below 70, are genetically and phenotypically highly heterogeneous. Identification of common molecular pathways underlying these disorders is crucial for understanding the molecular basis of cognition and for the development of therapeutic intervention strategies. To systematically establish their functional connectivity, we used transgenic RNAi to target 270 ID gene orthologs in the Drosophila eye. Assessment of neuronal function in behavioral and electrophysiological assays and multiparametric morphological analysis identified phenotypes associated with knockdown of 180 ID gene orthologs. Most of these genotype-phenotype associations were novel. For example, we uncovered 16 genes that are required for basal neurotransmission and have not previously been implicated in this process in any system or organism. ID gene orthologs with morphological eye phenotypes, in contrast to genes without phenotypes, are relatively highly expressed in the human nervous system and are enriched for neuronal functions, suggesting that eye phenotyping can distinguish different classes of ID genes. Indeed, grouping genes by Drosophila phenotype uncovered 26 connected functional modules. Novel links between ID genes successfully predicted that MYCN, PIGV and UPF3B regulate synapse development. Drosophila phenotype groups show, in addition to ID, significant phenotypic similarity also in humans, indicating that functional modules are conserved. The combined data indicate that ID disorders, despite their extreme genetic diversity, are caused by disruption of a limited number of highly connected functional modules. PMID:24204314

  15. Evolutionary origins of pectin methylesterase genes associated with novel aspects of angiosperm pollen tube walls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallace, Simon; Williams, Joseph H

    2017-06-03

    The early evolution of angiosperms was marked by a number of innovations of the reproductive cycle including an accelerated fertilization process involving faster transport of sperm to the egg via a pollen tube. Fast pollen tube growth rates in angiosperms are accompanied by a hard shank-soft tip pollen tube morphology. A critical actor in that morphology is the wall-embedded enzyme pectin methylesterase (PME), which in type II PMEs is accompanied by a co-transcribed inhibitor, PMEI. PMEs convert the esterified pectic tip wall to a stiffer state in the subapical flank by pectin de-esterification. It is hypothesized that rapid and precise targeting of PME activity was gained with the origin of type II genes, which are derived and have only expanded since the origin of vascular plants. Pollen-active PMEs have yet to be reported in early-divergent angiosperms or gymnosperms. Gene expression studies in Nymphaea odorata found transcripts from four type II VGD1-like and 16 type I AtPPME1-like homologs that were more abundant in pollen and pollen tubes than in vegetative tissues. The near full-length coding sequence of one type II PME (NoPMEII-1) included at least one PMEI domain. The identification of possible VGD1 homologs in an early-diverging angiosperm suggests that the refined control of PMEs that mediate de-esterification of pectins near pollen tube tips is a conserved feature across angiosperms. The recruitment of type II PMEs into a pollen tube elongation role in angiosperms may represent a key evolutionary step in the development of faster growing pollen tubes. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Evolutionary expansion and divergence in a large family of primate-specific zinc finger transcription factor genes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hamilton, A T; Huntley, S; Tran-Gyamfi, M; Baggott, D; Gordon, L; Stubbs, L

    2005-09-28

    Although most genes are conserved as one-to-one orthologs in different mammalian orders, certain gene families have evolved to comprise different numbers and types of protein-coding genes through independent series of gene duplications, divergence and gene loss in each evolutionary lineage. One such family encodes KRAB-zinc finger (KRAB-ZNF) genes, which are likely to function as transcriptional repressors. One KRAB-ZNF subfamily, the ZNF91 clade, has expanded specifically in primates to comprise more than 110 loci in the human genome, yielding large gene clusters in human chromosomes 19 and 7 and smaller clusters or isolated copies at other chromosomal locations. Although phylogenetic analysis indicates that many of these genes arose before the split between old world monkeys and new world monkeys, the ZNF91 subfamily has continued to expand and diversify throughout the evolution of apes and humans. The paralogous loci are distinguished by sequence divergence within their zinc finger arrays indicating a selection for proteins with different DNA binding specificities. RT-PCR and in situ hybridization data show that some of these ZNF genes can have tissue-specific expression patterns, however many KRAB-ZNFs that are near-ubiquitous could also be playing very specific roles in halting target pathways in all tissues except for a few, where the target is released by the absence of its repressor. The number of variant KRAB-ZNF proteins is increased not only because of the large number of loci, but also because many loci can produce multiple splice variants, which because of the modular structure of these genes may have separate and perhaps even conflicting regulatory roles. The lineage-specific duplication and rapid divergence of this family of transcription factor genes suggests a role in determining species-specific biological differences and the evolution of novel primate traits.

  17. Conservation of noncoding microsatellites in plants: implication for gene regulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sun Xiaofen

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Microsatellites are extremely common in plant genomes, and in particular, they are significantly enriched in the 5' noncoding regions. Although some 5' noncoding microsatellites involved in gene regulation have been described, the general properties of microsatellites as regulatory elements are still unknown. To address the question of microsatellites associated with regulatory elements, we have analyzed the conserved noncoding microsatellite sequences (CNMSs in the 5' noncoding regions by inter- and intragenomic phylogenetic footprinting in the Arabidopsis and Brassica genomes. Results We identified 247 Arabidopsis-Brassica orthologous and 122 Arabidopsis paralogous CNMSs, representing 491 CT/GA and CTT/GAA repeats, which accounted for 10.6% of these types located in the 500-bp regions upstream of coding sequences in the Arabidopsis genome. Among these identified CNMSs, 18 microsatellites show high conservation in the regulatory regions of both orthologous and paralogous genes, and some of them also appear in the corresponding positions of more distant homologs in Arabidopsis, as well as in other plants. A computational scan of CNMSs for known cis-regulatory elements showed that light responsive elements were clustered in the region of CT/GA repeats, as well as salicylic acid responsive elements in the (CTTn/(GAAn sequences. Patterns of gene expression revealed that 70–80% of CNMS (CTTn/(GAAn associated genes were regulated by salicylic acid, which was consistent with the prediction of regulatory elements in silico. Conclusion Our analyses showed that some noncoding microsatellites were conserved in plants and appeared to be ancient. These CNMSs served as regulatory elements involved in light and salicylic acid responses. Our findings might have implications in the common features of the over-represented microsatellites for gene regulation in plant-specific pathways.

  18. Functional and evolutionary correlates of gene constellations in the Drosophila melanogaster genome that deviate from the stereotypical gene architecture

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    Kohn Michael H

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The biological dimensions of genes are manifold. These include genomic properties, (e.g., X/autosomal linkage, recombination and functional properties (e.g., expression level, tissue specificity. Multiple properties, each generally of subtle influence individually, may affect the evolution of genes or merely be (auto-correlates. Results of multidimensional analyses may reveal the relative importance of these properties on the evolution of genes, and therefore help evaluate whether these properties should be considered during analyses. While numerous properties are now considered during studies, most work still assumes the stereotypical solitary gene as commonly depicted in textbooks. Here, we investigate the Drosophila melanogaster genome to determine whether deviations from the stereotypical gene architecture correlate with other properties of genes. Results Deviations from the stereotypical gene architecture were classified as the following gene constellations: Overlapping genes were defined as those that overlap in the 5-prime, exonic, or intronic regions. Chromatin co-clustering genes were defined as genes that co-clustered within 20 kb of transcriptional territories. If this scheme is applied the stereotypical gene emerges as a rare occurrence (7.5%, slightly varied schemes yielded between ~1%-50%. Moreover, when following our scheme, paired-overlapping genes and chromatin co-clustering genes accounted for 50.1 and 42.4% of the genes analyzed, respectively. Gene constellation was a correlate of a number of functional and evolutionary properties of genes, but its statistical effect was ~1-2 orders of magnitude lower than the effects of recombination, chromosome linkage and protein function. Analysis of datasets on male reproductive proteins showed these were biased in their representation of gene constellations and evolutionary rate Ka/Ks estimates, but these biases did not overwhelm the biologically meaningful

  19. Comparative genomics of Mycoplasma: analysis of conserved essential genes and diversity of the pan-genome.

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    Wei Liu

    Full Text Available Mycoplasma, the smallest self-replicating organism with a minimal metabolism and little genomic redundancy, is expected to be a close approximation to the minimal set of genes needed to sustain bacterial life. This study employs comparative evolutionary analysis of twenty Mycoplasma genomes to gain an improved understanding of essential genes. By analyzing the core genome of mycoplasmas, we finally revealed the conserved essential genes set for mycoplasma survival. Further analysis showed that the core genome set has many characteristics in common with experimentally identified essential genes. Several key genes, which are related to DNA replication and repair and can be disrupted in transposon mutagenesis studies, may be critical for bacteria survival especially over long period natural selection. Phylogenomic reconstructions based on 3,355 homologous groups allowed robust estimation of phylogenetic relatedness among mycoplasma strains. To obtain deeper insight into the relative roles of molecular evolution in pathogen adaptation to their hosts, we also analyzed the positive selection pressures on particular sites and lineages. There appears to be an approximate correlation between the divergence of species and the level of positive selection detected in corresponding lineages.

  20. Evolutionary conservation of a core root microbiome across plant phyla along a tropical soil chronosequence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeoh, Yun Kit; Dennis, Paul G; Paungfoo-Lonhienne, Chanyarat; Weber, Lui; Brackin, Richard; Ragan, Mark A; Schmidt, Susanne; Hugenholtz, Philip

    2017-08-09

    Culture-independent molecular surveys of plant root microbiomes indicate that soil type generally has a stronger influence on microbial communities than host phylogeny. However, these studies have mostly focussed on model plants and crops. Here, we examine the root microbiomes of multiple plant phyla including lycopods, ferns, gymnosperms, and angiosperms across a soil chronosequence using 16S rRNA gene amplicon profiling. We confirm that soil type is the primary determinant of root-associated bacterial community composition, but also observe a significant correlation with plant phylogeny. A total of 47 bacterial genera are associated with roots relative to bulk soil microbial communities, including well-recognized plant-associated genera such as Bradyrhizobium, Rhizobium, and Burkholderia, and major uncharacterized lineages such as WPS-2, Ellin329, and FW68. We suggest that these taxa collectively constitute an evolutionarily conserved core root microbiome at this site. This lends support to the inference that a core root microbiome has evolved with terrestrial plants over their 400 million year history.Yeoh et al. study root microbiomes of different plant phyla across a tropical soil chronosequence. They confirm that soil type is the primary determinant of root-associated bacterial communities, but also observe a clear correlation with plant phylogeny and define a core root microbiome at this site.

  1. Changes in transcriptional orientation are associated with increases in evolutionary rates of enterobacterial genes

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    Hsiung Chao

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Changes in transcriptional orientation (“CTOs” occur frequently in prokaryotic genomes. Such changes usually result from genomic inversions, which may cause a conflict between the directions of replication and transcription and an increase in mutation rate. However, CTOs do not always lead to the replication-transcription confrontation. Furthermore, CTOs may cause deleterious disruptions of operon structure and/or gene regulations. The currently existing CTOs may indicate relaxation of selection pressure. Therefore, it is of interest to investigate whether CTOs have an independent effect on the evolutionary rates of the affected genes, and whether these genes are subject to any type of selection pressure in prokaryotes. Methods Three closely related enterbacteria, Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae and Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium, were selected for comparisons of synonymous (dS and nonsynonymous (dN substitution rate between the genes that have experienced changes in transcriptional orientation (changed-orientation genes, “COGs” and those that do not (same-orientation genes, “SOGs”. The dN/dS ratio was also derived to evaluate the selection pressure on the analyzed genes. Confounding factors in the estimation of evolutionary rates, such as gene essentiality, gene expression level, replication-transcription confrontation, and decreased dS at gene terminals were controlled in the COG-SOG comparisons. Results We demonstrate that COGs have significantly higher dN and dS than SOGs when a series of confounding factors are controlled. However, the dN/dS ratios are similar between the two gene groups, suggesting that the increase in dS can sufficiently explain the increase in dN in COGs. Therefore, the increases in evolutionary rates in COGs may be mainly mutation-driven. Conclusions Here we show that CTOs can increase the evolutionary rates of the affected genes. This effect is independent of the

  2. Characterization of lamprey BAFF-like gene: evolutionary implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, Sabyasachi; Sutoh, Yoichi; Hirano, Masayuki; Han, Qifeng; Li, Jianxu; Cooper, Max D.; Herrin, Brantley R.

    2016-01-01

    BAFF (TNFSF13B/Blys) and APRIL (TNFSF13), are important regulatory factors for lymphocyte activation and survival in mammals. A BAFF/APRIL-like relative called BALM has also been identified in cartilaginous and bony fishes, and we report here a BAFF-like gene in lampreys. Our phylogenetic analysis of these genes, and a related TNFSF12 gene called TWEAK, suggest that, whereas an ancestral homologue of BAFF and APRIL was already present in a common ancestor of jawed and jawless vertebrates, TWEAK evolved early on in the jawed vertebrate lineage. Like mammalian BAFF and APRIL, the lamprey BAFF-like gene is expressed in T-like, B-like and innate immune cells. The predicted protein encoded by this BAFF-like gene in lampreys exhibits higher sequence similarity with mammalian BAFF than APRIL. Correspondingly, we find BAFF orthologues in all of the jawed vertebrate representatives that we examined, although APRIL and/or BALM orthologues are not identifiable in certain jawed vertebrates. For example, BALM is not identifiable in tetrapods, and APRIL is not identifiable in several bony fishes or in birds, the latter of which also lack a TWEAK-like gene. Our analysis further suggests that a hybrid molecule called TWE-PRIL, which is a product of an in-genomic fusion between APRIL and TWEAK genes evolved early in mammalian evolution. PMID:27543613

  3. Conserved deployment of genes during odontogenesis across osteichthyans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fraser, Gareth J; Graham, Anthony; Smith, Moya M

    2004-11-22

    Odontogenesis has only been closely scrutinized at the molecular level in the mouse, an animal with an extremely restricted dentition of only two types and one set. However, within osteichthyans many species display complex and extensive dentitions, which questions the extent to which information from the mouse is applicable to all osteichthyans. We present novel comparative molecular and morphological data in the rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) that show that three genes, essential for murine odontogenesis, follow identical spatial-temporal expression. Thus, at all tooth bud sites, epithelial genes Pitx-2 and Shh initiate the odontogenic cascade, resulting in dental mesenchymal Bmp-4 expression, importantly, including the previously unknown formation of replacement teeth. Significantly, this spatial-temporal sequence is the same for marginal and lingual dentitions, but we find notable differences regarding the deployment of Pitx-2 in the developing pharyngeal dentition. This difference may be highly significant in relation to the theory that dentitions may have evolved from pharyngeal tooth sets in jawless fishes. We have provided the first data on operational genes in tooth development to show that the same signalling genes choreograph this evolutionary stable event in fishes since the osteichthyan divergence 420 Myr ago, with the identical spatial-temporal expression as in mammals.

  4. In situ conservation-harnessing natural and human-derived evolutionary forces to ensure future crop adaptation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bellon, Mauricio R; Dulloo, Ehsan; Sardos, Julie; Thormann, Imke; Burdon, Jeremy J

    2017-12-01

    Ensuring the availability of the broadest possible germplasm base for agriculture in the face of increasingly uncertain and variable patterns of biotic and abiotic change is fundamental for the world's future food supply. While ex situ conservation plays a major role in the conservation and availability of crop germplasm, it may be insufficient to ensure this. In situ conservation aims to maintain target species and the collective genotypes they represent under evolution. A major rationale for this view is based on the likelihood that continued exposure to changing selective forces will generate and favor new genetic variation and an increased likelihood that rare alleles that may be of value to future agriculture are maintained. However, the evidence that underpins this key rationale remains fragmented and has not been examined systematically, thereby decreasing the perceived value and support for in situ conservation for agriculture and food systems and limiting the conservation options available. This study reviews evidence regarding the likelihood and rate of evolutionary change in both biotic and abiotic traits for crops and their wild relatives, placing these processes in a realistic context in which smallholder farming operates and crop wild relatives continue to exist. It identifies areas of research that would contribute to a deeper understanding of these processes as the basis for making them more useful for future crop adaptation.

  5. Upon Accounting for the Impact of Isoenzyme Loss, Gene Deletion Costs Anticorrelate with Their Evolutionary Rates.

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    Christopher Jacobs

    Full Text Available System-level metabolic network models enable the computation of growth and metabolic phenotypes from an organism's genome. In particular, flux balance approaches have been used to estimate the contribution of individual metabolic genes to organismal fitness, offering the opportunity to test whether such contributions carry information about the evolutionary pressure on the corresponding genes. Previous failure to identify the expected negative correlation between such computed gene-loss cost and sequence-derived evolutionary rates in Saccharomyces cerevisiae has been ascribed to a real biological gap between a gene's fitness contribution to an organism "here and now" and the same gene's historical importance as evidenced by its accumulated mutations over millions of years of evolution. Here we show that this negative correlation does exist, and can be exposed by revisiting a broadly employed assumption of flux balance models. In particular, we introduce a new metric that we call "function-loss cost", which estimates the cost of a gene loss event as the total potential functional impairment caused by that loss. This new metric displays significant negative correlation with evolutionary rate, across several thousand minimal environments. We demonstrate that the improvement gained using function-loss cost over gene-loss cost is explained by replacing the base assumption that isoenzymes provide unlimited capacity for backup with the assumption that isoenzymes are completely non-redundant. We further show that this change of the assumption regarding isoenzymes increases the recall of epistatic interactions predicted by the flux balance model at the cost of a reduction in the precision of the predictions. In addition to suggesting that the gene-to-reaction mapping in genome-scale flux balance models should be used with caution, our analysis provides new evidence that evolutionary gene importance captures much more than strict essentiality.

  6. Genome-Wide Identification, Evolutionary Expansion, and Expression Profile of Homeodomain-Leucine Zipper Gene Family in Poplar (Populus trichocarpa)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Ruibo; Chi, Xiaoyuan; Chai, Guohua; Kong, Yingzhen; He, Guo; Wang, Xiaoyu; Shi, Dachuan; Zhang, Dongyuan; Zhou, Gongke

    2012-01-01

    Background Homeodomain-leucine zipper (HD-ZIP) proteins are plant-specific transcriptional factors known to play crucial roles in plant development. Although sequence phylogeny analysis of Populus HD-ZIPs was carried out in a previous study, no systematic analysis incorporating genome organization, gene structure, and expression compendium has been conducted in model tree species Populus thus far. Principal Findings In this study, a comprehensive analysis of Populus HD-ZIP gene family was performed. Sixty-three full-length HD-ZIP genes were found in Populus genome. These Populus HD-ZIP genes were phylogenetically clustered into four distinct subfamilies (HD-ZIP I–IV) and predominately distributed across 17 linkage groups (LG). Fifty genes from 25 Populus paralogous pairs were located in the duplicated blocks of Populus genome and then preferentially retained during the sequential evolutionary courses. Genomic organization analyses indicated that purifying selection has played a pivotal role in the retention and maintenance of Populus HD-ZIP gene family. Microarray analysis has shown that 21 Populus paralogous pairs have been differentially expressed across different tissues and under various stresses, with five paralogous pairs showing nearly identical expression patterns, 13 paralogous pairs being partially redundant and three paralogous pairs diversifying significantly. Quantitative real-time RT-PCR (qRT-PCR) analysis performed on 16 selected Populus HD-ZIP genes in different tissues and under both drought and salinity stresses confirms their tissue-specific and stress-inducible expression patterns. Conclusions Genomic organizations indicated that segmental duplications contributed significantly to the expansion of Populus HD-ZIP gene family. Exon/intron organization and conserved motif composition of Populus HD-ZIPs are highly conservative in the same subfamily, suggesting the members in the same subfamilies may also have conservative functionalities

  7. Genome-wide identification, evolutionary expansion, and expression profile of homeodomain-leucine zipper gene family in poplar (Populus trichocarpa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruibo Hu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Homeodomain-leucine zipper (HD-ZIP proteins are plant-specific transcriptional factors known to play crucial roles in plant development. Although sequence phylogeny analysis of Populus HD-ZIPs was carried out in a previous study, no systematic analysis incorporating genome organization, gene structure, and expression compendium has been conducted in model tree species Populus thus far. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In this study, a comprehensive analysis of Populus HD-ZIP gene family was performed. Sixty-three full-length HD-ZIP genes were found in Populus genome. These Populus HD-ZIP genes were phylogenetically clustered into four distinct subfamilies (HD-ZIP I-IV and predominately distributed across 17 linkage groups (LG. Fifty genes from 25 Populus paralogous pairs were located in the duplicated blocks of Populus genome and then preferentially retained during the sequential evolutionary courses. Genomic organization analyses indicated that purifying selection has played a pivotal role in the retention and maintenance of Populus HD-ZIP gene family. Microarray analysis has shown that 21 Populus paralogous pairs have been differentially expressed across different tissues and under various stresses, with five paralogous pairs showing nearly identical expression patterns, 13 paralogous pairs being partially redundant and three paralogous pairs diversifying significantly. Quantitative real-time RT-PCR (qRT-PCR analysis performed on 16 selected Populus HD-ZIP genes in different tissues and under both drought and salinity stresses confirms their tissue-specific and stress-inducible expression patterns. CONCLUSIONS: Genomic organizations indicated that segmental duplications contributed significantly to the expansion of Populus HD-ZIP gene family. Exon/intron organization and conserved motif composition of Populus HD-ZIPs are highly conservative in the same subfamily, suggesting the members in the same subfamilies may also have conservative

  8. Distinct Patterns of Gene Gain and Loss: Diverse Evolutionary Modes of NBS-Encoding Genes in Three Solanaceae Crop Species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qian, Lan-Hua; Zhou, Guang-Can; Sun, Xiao-Qin; Lei, Zhao; Zhang, Yan-Mei; Xue, Jia-Yu; Hang, Yue-Yu

    2017-05-05

    Plant resistance conferred by nucleotide binding site (NBS)-encoding resistance genes plays a key role in the defense against various pathogens throughout the entire plant life cycle. However, comparative analyses for the systematic evaluation and determination of the evolutionary modes of NBS-encoding genes among Solanaceae species are rare. In this study, 447, 255, and 306 NBS-encoding genes were identified from the genomes of potato, tomato, and pepper, respectively. These genes usually clustered as tandem arrays on chromosomes; few existed as singletons. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that three subclasses [TNLs (TIR-NBS-LRR), CNLs (CC-NBS-LRR), and RNLs (RPW8-NBS-LRR)] each formed a monophyletic clade and were distinguished by unique exon/intron structures and amino acid motif sequences. By comparing phylogenetic and systematic relationships, we inferred that the NBS-encoding genes in the present genomes of potato, tomato, and pepper were derived from 150 CNL, 22 TNL, and 4 RNL ancestral genes, and underwent independent gene loss and duplication events after speciation. The NBS-encoding genes therefore exhibit diverse and dynamic evolutionary patterns in the three Solanaceae species, giving rise to the discrepant gene numbers observed today. Potato shows a "consistent expansion" pattern, tomato exhibits a pattern of "first expansion and then contraction," and pepper presents a "shrinking" pattern. The earlier expansion of CNLs in the common ancestor led to the dominance of this subclass in gene numbers. However, RNLs remained at low copy numbers due to their specific functions. Along the evolutionary process of NBS-encoding genes in Solanaceae, species-specific tandem duplications contributed the most to gene expansions. Copyright © 2017 Qian et al.

  9. Evolutionary analysis of the kinesin light chain genes in the yellow fever mosquito Aedes aegypti: gene duplication as a source for novel early zygotic genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tu Zhijian

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The maternal zygotic transition marks the time at which transcription from the zygotic genome is initiated and a subset of maternal RNAs are progressively degraded in the developing embryo. A number of early zygotic genes have been identified in Drosophila melanogaster and comparisons to sequenced mosquito genomes suggest that some of these early zygotic genes such as bottleneck are fast-evolving or subject to turnover in dipteran insects. One objective of this study is to identify early zygotic genes from the yellow fever mosquito Aedes aegypti to study their evolution. We are also interested in obtaining early zygotic promoters that will direct transgene expression in the early embryo as part of a Medea gene drive system. Results Two novel early zygotic kinesin light chain genes we call AaKLC2.1 and AaKLC2.2 were identified by transcriptome sequencing of Aedes aegypti embryos at various time points. These two genes have 98% nucleotide and amino acid identity in their coding regions and show transcription confined to the early zygotic stage according to gene-specific RT-PCR analysis. These AaKLC2 genes have a paralogous gene (AaKLC1 in Ae. aegypti. Phylogenetic inference shows that an ortholog to the AaKLC2 genes is only found in the sequenced genome of Culex quinquefasciatus. In contrast, AaKLC1 gene orthologs are found in all three sequenced mosquito species including Anopheles gambiae. There is only one KLC gene in D. melanogaster and other sequenced holometabolous insects that appears to be similar to AaKLC1. Unlike AaKLC2, AaKLC1 is expressed in all life stages and tissues tested, which is consistent with the expression pattern of the An. gambiae and D. melanogaster KLC genes. Phylogenetic inference also suggests that AaKLC2 genes and their likely C. quinquefasciatus ortholog are fast-evolving genes relative to the highly conserved AaKLC1-like paralogs. Embryonic injection of a luciferase reporter under the control of a

  10. Evolutionary analysis of the kinesin light chain genes in the yellow fever mosquito Aedes aegypti: gene duplication as a source for novel early zygotic genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biedler, James K; Tu, Zhijian

    2010-07-08

    The maternal zygotic transition marks the time at which transcription from the zygotic genome is initiated and a subset of maternal RNAs are progressively degraded in the developing embryo. A number of early zygotic genes have been identified in Drosophila melanogaster and comparisons to sequenced mosquito genomes suggest that some of these early zygotic genes such as bottleneck are fast-evolving or subject to turnover in dipteran insects. One objective of this study is to identify early zygotic genes from the yellow fever mosquito Aedes aegypti to study their evolution. We are also interested in obtaining early zygotic promoters that will direct transgene expression in the early embryo as part of a Medea gene drive system. Two novel early zygotic kinesin light chain genes we call AaKLC2.1 and AaKLC2.2 were identified by transcriptome sequencing of Aedes aegypti embryos at various time points. These two genes have 98% nucleotide and amino acid identity in their coding regions and show transcription confined to the early zygotic stage according to gene-specific RT-PCR analysis. These AaKLC2 genes have a paralogous gene (AaKLC1) in Ae. aegypti. Phylogenetic inference shows that an ortholog to the AaKLC2 genes is only found in the sequenced genome of Culex quinquefasciatus. In contrast, AaKLC1 gene orthologs are found in all three sequenced mosquito species including Anopheles gambiae. There is only one KLC gene in D. melanogaster and other sequenced holometabolous insects that appears to be similar to AaKLC1. Unlike AaKLC2, AaKLC1 is expressed in all life stages and tissues tested, which is consistent with the expression pattern of the An. gambiae and D. melanogaster KLC genes. Phylogenetic inference also suggests that AaKLC2 genes and their likely C. quinquefasciatus ortholog are fast-evolving genes relative to the highly conserved AaKLC1-like paralogs. Embryonic injection of a luciferase reporter under the control of a 1 kb fragment upstream of the AaKLC2.1 start

  11. Expanding from discrete Cartesian to permutation Gene-pool Optimal Mixing Evolutionary Algorithms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    P.A.N. Bosman (Peter); N.H. Luong (Ngoc Hoang); D. Thierens (Dirk)

    2016-01-01

    textabstractThe recently introduced Gene-pool Optimal Mixing Evolutionary Algorithm (GOMEA) family, which includes the Linkage Tree Genetic Algorithm (LTGA), has been shown to scale excellently on a variety of discrete, Cartesian-space, optimization problems. This paper shows that GOMEA can quite

  12. Analysis of the reptile CD1 genes: evolutionary implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Zhi; Wang, Chunyan; Wang, Tao; Bai, Jianhui; Zhao, Yu; Liu, Xuhan; Ma, Qingwei; Wu, Xiaobing; Guo, Ying; Zhao, Yaofeng; Ren, Liming

    2015-06-01

    CD1, as the third family of antigen-presenting molecules, is previously only found in mammals and chickens, which suggests that the chicken and mammalian CD1 shared a common ancestral gene emerging at least 310 million years ago. Here, we describe CD1 genes in the green anole lizard and Crocodylia, demonstrating that CD1 is ubiquitous in mammals, birds, and reptiles. Although the reptilian CD1 protein structures are predicted to be similar to human CD1d and chicken CD1.1, CD1 isotypes are not found to be orthologous between mammals, birds, and reptiles according to phylogenetic analyses, suggesting an independent diversification of CD1 isotypes during the speciation of mammals, birds, and reptiles. In the green anole lizard, although the single CD1 locus and MHC I gene are located on the same chromosome, there is an approximately 10-Mb-long sequence in between, and interestingly, several genes flanking the CD1 locus belong to the MHC paralogous region on human chromosome 19. The CD1 genes in Crocodylia are located in two loci, respectively linked to the MHC region and MHC paralogous region (corresponding to the MHC paralogous region on chromosome 19). These results provide new insights for studying the origin and evolution of CD1.

  13. Evolutionarily conserved role for SoxC genes in neural crest specification and neuronal differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uy, Benjamin R; Simoes-Costa, Marcos; Koo, Daniel E S; Sauka-Spengler, Tatjana; Bronner, Marianne E

    2015-01-15

    Members of the Sox family of transcription factors play a variety of critical developmental roles in both vertebrates and invertebrates. Whereas SoxBs and SoxEs are involved in neural and neural crest development, respectively, far less is known about members of the SoxC subfamily. To address this from an evolutionary perspective, we compare expression and function of SoxC genes in neural crest cells and their derivatives in lamprey (Petromyzon marinus), a basal vertebrate, to frog (Xenopus laevis). Analysis of transcript distribution reveals conservation of lamprey and X. laevis SoxC expression in premigratory neural crest, branchial arches, and cranial ganglia. Moreover, morpholino-mediated loss-of-function of selected SoxC family members demonstrates essential roles in aspects of neural crest development in both organisms. The results suggest important and conserved functions of SoxC genes during vertebrate evolution and a particularly critical, previously unrecognized role in early neural crest specification. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Characterization of resistance gene analogues (RGAs in apple (Malus × domestica Borkh. and their evolutionary history of the Rosaceae family.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michele Perazzolli

    Full Text Available The family of resistance gene analogues (RGAs with a nucleotide-binding site (NBS domain accounts for the largest number of disease resistance genes and is one of the largest gene families in plants. We have identified 868 RGAs in the genome of the apple (Malus × domestica Borkh. cultivar 'Golden Delicious'. This represents 1.51% of the total number of predicted genes for this cultivar. Several evolutionary features are pronounced in M. domestica, including a high fraction (80% of RGAs occurring in clusters. This suggests frequent tandem duplication and ectopic translocation events. Of the identified RGAs, 56% are located preferentially on six chromosomes (Chr 2, 7, 8, 10, 11, and 15, and 25% are located on Chr 2. TIR-NBS and non-TIR-NBS classes of RGAs are primarily exclusive of different chromosomes, and 99% of non-TIR-NBS RGAs are located on Chr 11. A phylogenetic reconstruction was conducted to study the evolution of RGAs in the Rosaceae family. More than 1400 RGAs were identified in six species based on their NBS domain, and a neighbor-joining analysis was used to reconstruct the phylogenetic relationships among the protein sequences. Specific phylogenetic clades were found for RGAs of Malus, Fragaria, and Rosa, indicating genus-specific evolution of resistance genes. However, strikingly similar RGAs were shared in Malus, Pyrus, and Prunus, indicating high conservation of specific RGAs and suggesting a monophyletic origin of these three genera.

  15. Characterization of resistance gene analogues (RGAs) in apple (Malus × domestica Borkh.) and their evolutionary history of the Rosaceae family.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perazzolli, Michele; Malacarne, Giulia; Baldo, Angela; Righetti, Laura; Bailey, Aubrey; Fontana, Paolo; Velasco, Riccardo; Malnoy, Mickael

    2014-01-01

    The family of resistance gene analogues (RGAs) with a nucleotide-binding site (NBS) domain accounts for the largest number of disease resistance genes and is one of the largest gene families in plants. We have identified 868 RGAs in the genome of the apple (Malus × domestica Borkh.) cultivar 'Golden Delicious'. This represents 1.51% of the total number of predicted genes for this cultivar. Several evolutionary features are pronounced in M. domestica, including a high fraction (80%) of RGAs occurring in clusters. This suggests frequent tandem duplication and ectopic translocation events. Of the identified RGAs, 56% are located preferentially on six chromosomes (Chr 2, 7, 8, 10, 11, and 15), and 25% are located on Chr 2. TIR-NBS and non-TIR-NBS classes of RGAs are primarily exclusive of different chromosomes, and 99% of non-TIR-NBS RGAs are located on Chr 11. A phylogenetic reconstruction was conducted to study the evolution of RGAs in the Rosaceae family. More than 1400 RGAs were identified in six species based on their NBS domain, and a neighbor-joining analysis was used to reconstruct the phylogenetic relationships among the protein sequences. Specific phylogenetic clades were found for RGAs of Malus, Fragaria, and Rosa, indicating genus-specific evolution of resistance genes. However, strikingly similar RGAs were shared in Malus, Pyrus, and Prunus, indicating high conservation of specific RGAs and suggesting a monophyletic origin of these three genera.

  16. Variation in MHC class II B genes in marbled murrelets: implications for delineating conservation units

    Science.gov (United States)

    C. Vásquez-Carrillo; V. Friesen; L. Hall; M.Z. Peery

    2013-01-01

    Conserving genetic variation is critical for maintaining the evolutionary potential and viability of a species. Genetic studies seeking to delineate conservation units, however, typically focus on characterizing neutral genetic variation and may not identify populations harboring local adaptations. Here, variation at two major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II...

  17. Isolation of a novel ras gene from Trichomonas vaginalis: a possible evolutionary ancestor of the Ras and Rap genes of higher eukaryotes.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2007-04-01

    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.

  18. An evolutionarily conserved gene, FUWA, plays a role in determining panicle architecture, grain shape and grain weight in rice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Jun; Gao, He; Zheng, Xiao-Ming; Jin, Mingna; Weng, Jian-Feng; Ma, Jin; Ren, Yulong; Zhou, Kunneng; Wang, Qi; Wang, Jie; Wang, Jiu-Lin; Zhang, Xin; Cheng, Zhijun; Wu, Chuanyin; Wang, Haiyang; Wan, Jian-Min

    2015-08-01

    Plant breeding relies on creation of novel allelic combinations for desired traits. Identification and utilization of beneficial alleles, rare alleles and evolutionarily conserved genes in the germplasm (referred to as 'hidden' genes) provide an effective approach to achieve this goal. Here we show that a chemically induced null mutation in an evolutionarily conserved gene, FUWA, alters multiple important agronomic traits in rice, including panicle architecture, grain shape and grain weight. FUWA encodes an NHL domain-containing protein, with preferential expression in the root meristem, shoot apical meristem and inflorescences, where it restricts excessive cell division. Sequence analysis revealed that FUWA has undergone a bottleneck effect, and become fixed in landraces and modern cultivars during domestication and breeding. We further confirm a highly conserved role of FUWA homologs in determining panicle architecture and grain development in rice, maize and sorghum through genetic transformation. Strikingly, knockdown of the FUWA transcription level by RNA interference results in an erect panicle and increased grain size in both indica and japonica genetic backgrounds. This study illustrates an approach to create new germplasm with improved agronomic traits for crop breeding by tapping into evolutionary conserved genes. © 2015 The Authors The Plant Journal © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. The ergot alkaloid gene cluster: Functional analyses and evolutionary aspects

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Lorenz, N.; Haarmann, T.; Pažoutová, Sylvie; Jung, M.; Tudzynski, P.

    2009-01-01

    Roč. 70, 15-16 (2009), s. 1822-1832 ISSN 0031-9422 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50200510 Keywords : Claviceps purpurea * Ergot fungus * Ergot alkaloid gene cluster Subject RIV: EE - Microbiology, Virology Impact factor: 3.104, year: 2009

  20. Evolutionary ecology of beta-lactam gene clusters in animals

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Suring, Wouter; Meusemann, Karen; Blanke, Alexander; Mariën, Janine; Schol, Tim; Agamennone, Valeria; Faddeeva-Vakhrusheva, Anna; Berg, Matty P; Brouwer, Abraham; van Straalen, Nico M; Roelofs, Dick

    Beta-lactam biosynthesis was thought to occur only in fungi and bacteria, but we recently reported the presence of isopenicillin N synthase in a soil-dwelling animal, Folsomia candida. However, it has remained unclear whether this gene is part of a larger beta-lactam biosynthesis pathway and how

  1. Mutational and Evolutionary Analyses of Bovine Reprimo Gene ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... 1230-/T and 1264-/A. The percent identity and similarity between the amino acid sequence of bovine RPRM and RPRM genes of other mammals were higher than 90% (91-100% and 94-100%, respectively), except in the duckbill platypus where percent identity and similarity indices were 78% and 81%, respectively.

  2. Flowering Time Gene Variation in Brassica Species Shows Evolutionary Principles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schiessl, Sarah V; Huettel, Bruno; Kuehn, Diana; Reinhardt, Richard; Snowdon, Rod J

    2017-01-01

    Flowering time genes have a strong influence on successful reproduction and life cycle adaptation. However, their regulation is highly complex and only well understood in diploid model systems. For crops with a polyploid background from the genus Brassica, data on flowering time gene variation are scarce, although indispensable for modern breeding techniques like marker-assisted breeding. We have deep-sequenced all paralogs of 35 Arabidopsis thaliana flowering regulators using Sequence Capture followed by Illumina sequencing in two selected accessions of the vegetable species Brassica rapa and Brassica oleracea, respectively. Using these data, we were able to call SNPs, InDels and copy number variations (CNVs) for genes from the total flowering time network including central flowering regulators, but also genes from the vernalisation pathway, the photoperiod pathway, temperature regulation, the circadian clock and the downstream effectors. Comparing the results to a complementary data set from the allotetraploid species Brassica napus, we detected rearrangements in B. napus which probably occurred early after the allopolyploidisation event. Those data are both a valuable resource for flowering time research in those vegetable species, as well as a contribution to speciation genetics.

  3. Flowering Time Gene Variation in Brassica Species Shows Evolutionary Principles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah V. Schiessl

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Flowering time genes have a strong influence on successful reproduction and life cycle adaptation. However, their regulation is highly complex and only well understood in diploid model systems. For crops with a polyploid background from the genus Brassica, data on flowering time gene variation are scarce, although indispensable for modern breeding techniques like marker-assisted breeding. We have deep-sequenced all paralogs of 35 Arabidopsis thaliana flowering regulators using Sequence Capture followed by Illumina sequencing in two selected accessions of the vegetable species Brassica rapa and Brassica oleracea, respectively. Using these data, we were able to call SNPs, InDels and copy number variations (CNVs for genes from the total flowering time network including central flowering regulators, but also genes from the vernalisation pathway, the photoperiod pathway, temperature regulation, the circadian clock and the downstream effectors. Comparing the results to a complementary data set from the allotetraploid species Brassica napus, we detected rearrangements in B. napus which probably occurred early after the allopolyploidisation event. Those data are both a valuable resource for flowering time research in those vegetable species, as well as a contribution to speciation genetics.

  4. Genes that contribute to cancer fusion genes are large and evolutionarily conserved.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narsing, Swetha; Jelsovsky, Zhihong; Mbah, Alfred; Blanck, George

    2009-06-01

    Numerous cancer fusion genes have been identified and studied, and in some cases, therapy or diagnostic techniques have been designed that are specific to the fusion protein encoded by the fusion gene. There has been little progress, however, in understanding the general features of cancer fusion genes in a way that could provide the foundation for an algorithm for predicting the occurrence of a fusion gene once the chromosomal translocation points have been identified by karyotype analyses. In this study, we used publicly available data sets to characterize 59 cancer fusion genes. The results indicate that all but 17% of the genes involved in fusion events are either relatively large, compared to neighboring genes, or are highly conserved in evolution. These results support a basis for designing algorithms that could have a high degree of predictive value in identifying fusion genes once conventional microscopic analyses have identified the chromosomal breakpoints.

  5. Molecular phylogeny of OVOL genes illustrates a conserved C2H2 zinc finger domain coupled by hypervariable unstructured regions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abhishek Kumar

    Full Text Available OVO-like proteins (OVOL are members of the zinc finger protein family and serve as transcription factors to regulate gene expression in various differentiation processes. Recent studies have shown that OVOL genes are involved in epithelial development and differentiation in a wide variety of organisms; yet there is a lack of comprehensive studies that describe OVOL proteins from an evolutionary perspective. Using comparative genomic analysis, we traced three different OVOL genes (OVOL1-3 in vertebrates. One gene, OVOL3, was duplicated during a whole-genome-duplication event in fish, but only the copy (OVOL3b was retained. From early-branching metazoa to humans, we found that a core domain, comprising a tetrad of C2H2 zinc fingers, is conserved. By domain comparison of the OVOL proteins, we found that they evolved in different metazoan lineages by attaching intrinsically-disordered (ID segments of N/C-terminal extensions of 100 to 1000 amino acids to this conserved core. These ID regions originated independently across different animal lineages giving rise to different types of OVOL genes over the course of metazoan evolution. We illustrated the molecular evolution of metazoan OVOL genes over a period of 700 million years (MY. This study both extends our current understanding of the structure/function relationship of metazoan OVOL genes, and assembles a good platform for further characterization of OVOL genes from diverged organisms.

  6. Designing a parallel evolutionary algorithm for inferring gene networks on the cloud computing environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    Background To improve the tedious task of reconstructing gene networks through testing experimentally the possible interactions between genes, it becomes a trend to adopt the automated reverse engineering procedure instead. Some evolutionary algorithms have been suggested for deriving network parameters. However, to infer large networks by the evolutionary algorithm, it is necessary to address two important issues: premature convergence and high computational cost. To tackle the former problem and to enhance the performance of traditional evolutionary algorithms, it is advisable to use parallel model evolutionary algorithms. To overcome the latter and to speed up the computation, it is advocated to adopt the mechanism of cloud computing as a promising solution: most popular is the method of MapReduce programming model, a fault-tolerant framework to implement parallel algorithms for inferring large gene networks. Results This work presents a practical framework to infer large gene networks, by developing and parallelizing a hybrid GA-PSO optimization method. Our parallel method is extended to work with the Hadoop MapReduce programming model and is executed in different cloud computing environments. To evaluate the proposed approach, we use a well-known open-source software GeneNetWeaver to create several yeast S. cerevisiae sub-networks and use them to produce gene profiles. Experiments have been conducted and the results have been analyzed. They show that our parallel approach can be successfully used to infer networks with desired behaviors and the computation time can be largely reduced. Conclusions Parallel population-based algorithms can effectively determine network parameters and they perform better than the widely-used sequential algorithms in gene network inference. These parallel algorithms can be distributed to the cloud computing environment to speed up the computation. By coupling the parallel model population-based optimization method and the parallel

  7. The differential pattern of tissue-specific expression of ruminant pancreatic type ribonucleases may help to understand the evolutionary history of their genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sasso, M P; Lombardi, M; Confalone, E; Carsana, A; Palmieri, M; Furia, A

    1999-02-18

    Molecular evolutionary analyses of mammalian ribonucleases have shown that gene duplication events giving three paralogous genes occurred in ruminant ancestors. The enzymes of the bovine species encoded by these genes, isolated from pancreas, brain and seminal vesicles, present similar enzymological properties but distinct structural features. In other ruminant species, genomic sequences orthologous to the bovine genes of pancreas and brain ribonucleases encode active enzymes. In mammalian species other than ruminant artiodactyls, only one gene encoding ribonuclease of the pancreatic type is generally present. In this work, we describe a differential pattern of transcriptional expression of the pancreas and brain ribonuclease genes in the ox species and report transcription of the human ribonuclease gene in brain as well as in pancreas and in mammary gland. We also report the molecular cloning of the gene encoding the bovine seminal ribonuclease in which the structural organization already described for the two paralogous genes is conserved. The seminal RNAase is exclusively expressed in seminal vesicles of Bos taurus, whereas in other ruminant species, the orthologous sequence is a pseudogene. Previous studies from a number of research groups demonstrated that, unlike other mammalian ribonucleases, the seminal enzyme is a covalent dimer, and its unique quaternary structure correlates with special biological activities. The major determinant of dimer formation, i.e. the presence of two adjacent cysteine residues, is absent in the pseudogenes. We advance the hypothesis that the differentiation of distinct expression patterns could represent an important evolutionary determinant for the genes encoding pancreas and brain ribonucleases in ruminants, whereas the differentiation of a quaternary structure endowed with new biological functions could be the main determinant for the evolutionary success of the seminal gene in the bovine species.

  8. Gene essentiality, conservation index and co-evolution of genes in cyanobacteria.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gopi Siva Sai Tiruveedula

    Full Text Available Cyanobacteria, a group of photosynthetic prokaryotes, dominate the earth with ~ 1015 g wet biomass. Despite diversity in habitats and an ancient origin, cyanobacterial phylum has retained a significant core genome. Cyanobacteria are being explored for direct conversion of solar energy and carbon dioxide into biofuels. For this, efficient cyanobacterial strains will need to be designed via metabolic engineering. This will require identification of target knockouts to channelize the flow of carbon toward the product of interest while minimizing deletions of essential genes. We propose "Gene Conservation Index" (GCI as a quick measure to predict gene essentiality in cyanobacteria. GCI is based on phylogenetic profile of a gene constructed with a reduced dataset of cyanobacterial genomes. GCI is the percentage of organism clusters in which the query gene is present in the reduced dataset. Of the 750 genes deemed to be essential in the experimental study on S. elongatus PCC 7942, we found 494 to be conserved across the phylum which largely comprise of the essential metabolic pathways. On the contrary, the conserved but non-essential genes broadly comprise of genes required under stress conditions. Exceptions to this rule include genes such as the glycogen synthesis and degradation enzymes, deoxyribose-phosphate aldolase (DERA, glucose-6-phosphate 1-dehydrogenase (zwf and fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase class1, which are conserved but non-essential. While the essential genes are to be avoided during gene knockout studies as potentially lethal deletions, the non-essential but conserved set of genes could be interesting targets for metabolic engineering. Further, we identify clusters of co-evolving genes (CCG, which provide insights that may be useful in annotation. Principal component analysis (PCA plots of the CCGs are demonstrated as data visualization tools that are complementary to the conventional heatmaps. Our dataset consists of phylogenetic

  9. Cadherin genes and evolutionary novelties in the octopus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Z Yan; Ragsdale, Clifton W

    2017-09-01

    All animals with large brains must have molecular mechanisms to regulate neuronal process outgrowth and prevent neurite self-entanglement. In vertebrates, two major gene families implicated in these mechanisms are the clustered protocadherins and the atypical cadherins. However, the molecular mechanisms utilized in complex invertebrate brains, such as those of the cephalopods, remain largely unknown. Recently, we identified protocadherins and atypical cadherins in the octopus. The octopus protocadherin expansion shares features with the mammalian clustered protocadherins, including enrichment in neural tissues, clustered head-to-tail orientations in the genome, and a large first exon encoding all cadherin domains. Other octopus cadherins, including a newly-identified cadherin with 77 extracellular cadherin domains, are elevated in the suckers, a striking cephalopod novelty. Future study of these octopus genes may yield insights into the general functions of protocadherins in neural wiring and cadherin-related proteins in complex morphogenesis. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Conserved and Diversified Gene Families of Monovalent Cation/H+ Antiporters from Algae to Flowering Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salil eChanroj

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available All organisms have evolved strategies to regulate ion and pH homeostasis in response to developmental and environmental cues. One strategy is mediated by cation-proton antiporters (CPA. CPA1 genes found in bacteria, fungi, metazoa and plants have been functionally-characterized; though roles of plant CPA2 genes in KEA (K+-efflux antiporter and CHX (cation/H+ exchanger families are largely unknown. Phylogenetic analysis showed that three clades of the Na+-H+ exchanger (NHX family have been conserved from single-celled alga to Arabidopsis. These are i plasma membrane-bound SOS1/AtNHX7 that share ancestry with prokaryote NhaP, ii endosomal AtNHX5/6 that is part of the eukaryote Intracellular-NHE clade, and iii a vacuolar NHX clade (AtNHX1-4 specific to plants. Early diversification of KEA genes possibly from ancestral genes of a cyanobacterium is suggested for three K+-efflux antiporter clades (KEA/Kef seen in all plants. Intriguingly, the CHX gene family blossomed from a few members in early land plants to >40 genes in legumes. Homologs from spirogyra or moss share high similarity with guard cell-specific AtCHX20, suggesting that AtCHX20 and its relatives (AtCHX16-19 are founders of the family. Evolutionary analysis suggests pollen-expressed CHX genes appeared later in monocots and early eudicots. AtCHX proteins have been localized to intracellular and plasma membrane of plants, and shown to mediate K+ transport and pH homeostasis. Thus KEA genes are conserved from green algae to angiosperms, and their presence in red algae and secondary endosymbionts suggest a role in plastids. In contrast, AtNHX1-4 subtype evolved in ancestral plants to handle ion homeostasis of vacuoles in all cell types. The strong presence of CHX genes in land plants, but not in metazoa or fungi, would infer a role of ion and pH homeostasis at dynamic endomembranes to support vegetative and reproductive success of flowering plants.

  11. Disentangling evolutionary signals: conservation, specificity determining positions and coevolution. Implication for catalytic residue prediction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Teppa, Elin; Wilkins, Angela D.; Nielsen, Morten

    2012-01-01

    predictive potential compared to others when it comes to, in particular, the identification of catalytic residues (CR) in proteins. Using a large set of enzymatic protein families and measures based on different evolutionary signals, we sought to break up the different components of the information content......Background: A large panel of methods exists that aim to identify residues with critical impact on protein function based on evolutionary signals, sequence and structure information. However, it is not clear to what extent these different methods overlap, and if any of the methods have higher...... within a multiple sequence alignment to investigate their predictive potential and degree of overlap. Results: Our results demonstrate that the different methods included in the benchmark in general can be divided into three groups with a limited mutual overlap. One group containing real...

  12. The evolutionary history of the SAL1 gene family in eutherian mammals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Callebaut Isabelle

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background SAL1 (salivary lipocalin is a member of the OBP (Odorant Binding Protein family and is involved in chemical sexual communication in pig. SAL1 and its relatives may be involved in pheromone and olfactory receptor binding and in pre-mating behaviour. The evolutionary history and the selective pressures acting on SAL1 and its orthologous genes have not yet been exhaustively described. The aim of the present work was to study the evolution of these genes, to elucidate the role of selective pressures in their evolution and the consequences for their functions. Results Here, we present the evolutionary history of SAL1 gene and its orthologous genes in mammals. We found that (1 SAL1 and its related genes arose in eutherian mammals with lineage-specific duplications in rodents, horse and cow and are lost in human, mouse lemur, bushbaby and orangutan, (2 the evolution of duplicated genes of horse, rat, mouse and guinea pig is driven by concerted evolution with extensive gene conversion events in mouse and guinea pig and by positive selection mainly acting on paralogous genes in horse and guinea pig, (3 positive selection was detected for amino acids involved in pheromone binding and amino acids putatively involved in olfactory receptor binding, (4 positive selection was also found for lineage, indicating a species-specific strategy for amino acid selection. Conclusions This work provides new insights into the evolutionary history of SAL1 and its orthologs. On one hand, some genes are subject to concerted evolution and to an increase in dosage, suggesting the need for homogeneity of sequence and function in certain species. On the other hand, positive selection plays a role in the diversification of the functions of the family and in lineage, suggesting adaptive evolution, with possible consequences for speciation and for the reinforcement of prezygotic barriers.

  13. Gene pool conservation and tree improvement in Serbia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isajev Vasilije

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the concepts applied in the gene pool conservation and tree improvement in Serbia. Gene pool conservation of tree species in Serbia includes a series of activities aiming at the sustainability and protection of genetic and species variability. This implies the investigation of genetic resources and their identification through the research of the genetic structure and the breeding system of individual species. Paper also includes the study of intra- and inter-population variability in experiments - provenance tests, progeny tests, half- and full-sib lines, etc. The increased use of the genetic potential in tree improvement in Serbia should be intensified by the following activities: improvement of production of normal forest seed, application of the concept of new selections directed primarily to the improvement of only one character, because in that case the result would be certain, establishment and management of seed orchards as specialized plantations for long-term production of genetically good-quality forest seeds, and the shortening of the improvement process by introducing new techniques and methods (molecular markers, somaclonal variation, genetic engineering, protoplast fusion, micropropagation, etc..

  14. Population genetics of non-genetic traits: Evolutionary roles of stochasticity in gene expression

    KAUST Repository

    Mineta, Katsuhiko

    2015-05-01

    The role of stochasticity in evolutionary genetics has long been debated. To date, however, the potential roles of non-genetic traits in evolutionary processes have been largely neglected. In molecular biology, growing evidence suggests that stochasticity in gene expression (SGE) is common and that SGE has major impacts on phenotypes and fitness. Here, we provide a general overview of the potential effects of SGE on population genetic parameters, arguing that SGE can indeed have a profound effect on evolutionary processes. Our analyses suggest that SGE potentially alters the fate of mutations by influencing effective population size and fixation probability. In addition, a genetic control of SGE magnitude could evolve under certain conditions, if the fitness of the less-fit individual increases due to SGE and environmental fluctuation. Although empirical evidence for our arguments is yet to come, methodological developments for precisely measuring SGE in living organisms will further advance our understanding of SGE-driven evolution.

  15. The evolutionary history of bears is characterized by gene flow across species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Vikas; Lammers, Fritjof; Bidon, Tobias; Pfenninger, Markus; Kolter, Lydia; Nilsson, Maria A; Janke, Axel

    2017-04-19

    Bears are iconic mammals with a complex evolutionary history. Natural bear hybrids and studies of few nuclear genes indicate that gene flow among bears may be more common than expected and not limited to polar and brown bears. Here we present a genome analysis of the bear family with representatives of all living species. Phylogenomic analyses of 869 mega base pairs divided into 18,621 genome fragments yielded a well-resolved coalescent species tree despite signals for extensive gene flow across species. However, genome analyses using different statistical methods show that gene flow is not limited to closely related species pairs. Strong ancestral gene flow between the Asiatic black bear and the ancestor to polar, brown and American black bear explains uncertainties in reconstructing the bear phylogeny. Gene flow across the bear clade may be mediated by intermediate species such as the geographically wide-spread brown bears leading to large amounts of phylogenetic conflict. Genome-scale analyses lead to a more complete understanding of complex evolutionary processes. Evidence for extensive inter-specific gene flow, found also in other animal species, necessitates shifting the attention from speciation processes achieving genome-wide reproductive isolation to the selective processes that maintain species divergence in the face of gene flow.

  16. A global evolutionary and metabolic analysis of human obesity gene risk variants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castillo, Joseph J; Hazlett, Zachary S; Orlando, Robert A; Garver, William S

    2017-09-05

    It is generally accepted that the selection of gene variants during human evolution optimized energy metabolism that now interacts with our obesogenic environment to increase the prevalence of obesity. The purpose of this study was to perform a global evolutionary and metabolic analysis of human obesity gene risk variants (110 human obesity genes with 127 nearest gene risk variants) identified using genome-wide association studies (GWAS) to enhance our knowledge of early and late genotypes. As a result of determining the mean frequency of these obesity gene risk variants in 13 available populations from around the world our results provide evidence for the early selection of ancestral risk variants (defined as selection before migration from Africa) and late selection of derived risk variants (defined as selection after migration from Africa). Our results also provide novel information for association of these obesity genes or encoded proteins with diverse metabolic pathways and other human diseases. The overall results indicate a significant differential evolutionary pattern for the selection of obesity gene ancestral and derived risk variants proposed to optimize energy metabolism in varying global environments and complex association with metabolic pathways and other human diseases. These results are consistent with obesity genes that encode proteins possessing a fundamental role in maintaining energy metabolism and survival during the course of human evolution. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  17. Phylogenetic distribution and evolutionary dynamics of the sex determination genes doublesex and transformer in insects

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geuverink, E.; Beukeboom, L. W.

    2014-01-01

    Sex determination in insects is characterized by a gene cascade that is conserved at the bottom but contains diverse primary signals at the top. The bottom master switch gene doublesex is found in all insects. Its upstream regulator transformer is present in the orders Hymenoptera, Coleoptera and

  18. Statistical Mechanics of Horizontal Gene Transfer in Evolutionary Ecology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chia, Nicholas; Goldenfeld, Nigel

    2011-04-01

    The biological world, especially its majority microbial component, is strongly interacting and may be dominated by collective effects. In this review, we provide a brief introduction for statistical physicists of the way in which living cells communicate genetically through transferred genes, as well as the ways in which they can reorganize their genomes in response to environmental pressure. We discuss how genome evolution can be thought of as related to the physical phenomenon of annealing, and describe the sense in which genomes can be said to exhibit an analogue of information entropy. As a direct application of these ideas, we analyze the variation with ocean depth of transposons in marine microbial genomes, predicting trends that are consistent with recent observations using metagenomic surveys.

  19. Evolutionary history and functional characterization of androgen receptor genes in jawed vertebrates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogino, Yukiko; Katoh, Hironori; Kuraku, Shigehiro; Yamada, Gen

    2009-12-01

    Vertebrates show diverse sexual characters in sexually attractive and reproductive organs, which are regulated by steroid hormones, particularly androgens. However, the evolutionary history of androgen receptor (AR) gene remains largely unknown on the basis of phylogenic and functional analyses. To elucidate the evolutionary history and functional diversification of AR genes in vertebrates, we cloned the AR cDNAs from a shark, basal ray-finned fishes (Actinopterygii), namely bichir and sturgeon (Acipenseriformes), and teleosts including a basal teleost, arowana (Osteoglossiformes). Molecular phylogenetic analysis revealed that the gene duplication event that gave rise to two different teleost ARs (alpha and beta) likely occurred in the actinopterygian lineage leading to teleosts after the divergence of Acipenseriformes but before the split of Osteoglossiformes, which is compatible with the phylogenetic timing of teleost-specific genome duplication. Searching for AR genes in the medaka genome indicated that the teleost AR gene duplication has been associated with the duplication between chromosomes 10 and 14. Our functional analysis revealed that the shark AR activates the target gene via androgen response element by classical androgens. The teleost ARalpha showed the unique intracellular localization with a significantly higher transactivating capacity than that by teleost ARbeta. These findings indicate that the most ancient type of AR, as activated by the classical androgens as ligands, emerged before the Chondrichthyes-Osteichthyes split, and the AR gene was duplicated during the teleost-specific genome duplication event. We report here for the first time the accurate evolutionary history of AR gene and functional characterization of AR duplicates in teleost lineage.

  20. Evolutionary history of the reprimo tumor suppressor gene family in vertebrates with a description of a new reprimo gene lineage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wichmann, Ignacio A; Zavala, Kattina; Hoffmann, Federico G; Vandewege, Michael W; Corvalán, Alejandro H; Amigo, Julio D; Owen, Gareth I; Opazo, Juan C

    2016-10-10

    Genes related to human diseases should be natural targets for evolutionary studies, since they could provide clues regarding the genetic bases of pathologies and potential treatments. Here we studied the evolution of the reprimo gene family, a group of tumor-suppressor genes that are implicated in p53-mediated cell cycle arrest. These genes, especially the reprimo duplicate located on human chromosome 2, have been associated with epigenetic modifications correlated with transcriptional silencing and cancer progression. We demonstrate the presence of a third reprimo lineage that, together with the reprimo and reprimo-like genes, appears to have been differentially retained during the evolutionary history of vertebrates. We present evidence that these reprimo lineages originated early in vertebrate evolution and expanded as a result of the two rounds of whole genome duplications that occurred in the last common ancestor of vertebrates. The reprimo gene has been lost in birds, and the third reprimo gene lineage has been retained in only a few distantly related species, such as coelacanth and gar. Expression analyses revealed that the reprimo paralogs are mainly expressed in the nervous system. Different vertebrate lineages have retained different reprimo paralogs, and even in species that have retained multiple copies, only one of them is heavily expressed. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Structural features of DNA are conserved in the promoter region of orthologous genes across different strains of Helicobacter pylori.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Aditya; Manivelan, Vasumathi; Bansal, Manju

    2016-09-01

    Promoter regions play a key role in the process of transcription initiation and gene expression, hence promoter identification is an inherent component of the genome annotation process. Identification and characterization of promoters in fully sequenced genomes is a challenging and complex task. An analysis of sequence-dependent DNA structural properties in the promoter region of orthologous and non-orthologous genes can help in characterizing promoters and also provide insights into transcription initiation. Various structural properties, such as duplex stability, protein-induced bendability and intrinsic curvature of promoter sequences have been calculated and compared for 10 different strains of Helicobacter pylori genomes, and it is found that promoter regions in orthologous and non-orthologous genes show distinct trends for these properties, with orthologous genes showing sharper low-stability peak, lower bendability and higher curvature. The average GC content of orthologous genes is higher than that of non-orthologous genes, and relative stability-based promoter annotation tool PromPredict performs better for orthologous genes than non-orthologous genes. The characteristic sequence-dependent structural properties of promoters show significant differences between orthologous and non-orthologous genes. Interestingly, these structural properties of promoters are conserved, but the genes themselves vary in their evolutionary selection rate. © FEMS 2016. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  2. Evolutionary relationship of archaebacteria, eubacteria, and eukaryotes inferred from phylogenetic trees of duplicated genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1989-01-01

    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

  3. Horizontal gene transfer: essentiality and evolvability in prokaryotes, and roles in evolutionary transitions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koonin, Eugene V.

    2016-01-01

    The wide spread of gene exchange and loss in the prokaryotic world has prompted the concept of ‘lateral genomics’ to the point of an outright denial of the relevance of phylogenetic trees for evolution. However, the pronounced coherence congruence of the topologies of numerous gene trees, particularly those for (nearly) universal genes, translates into the notion of a statistical tree of life (STOL), which reflects a central trend of vertical evolution. The STOL can be employed as a framework for reconstruction of the evolutionary processes in the prokaryotic world. Quantitatively, however, horizontal gene transfer (HGT) dominates microbial evolution, with the rate of gene gain and loss being comparable to the rate of point mutations and much greater than the duplication rate. Theoretical models of evolution suggest that HGT is essential for the survival of microbial populations that otherwise deteriorate due to the Muller’s ratchet effect. Apparently, at least some bacteria and archaea evolved dedicated vehicles for gene transfer that evolved from selfish elements such as plasmids and viruses. Recent phylogenomic analyses suggest that episodes of massive HGT were pivotal for the emergence of major groups of organisms such as multiple archaeal phyla as well as eukaryotes. Similar analyses appear to indicate that, in addition to donating hundreds of genes to the emerging eukaryotic lineage, mitochondrial endosymbiosis severely curtailed HGT. These results shed new light on the routes of evolutionary transitions, but caution is due given the inherent uncertainty of deep phylogenies. PMID:27508073

  4. Horizontal gene transfer: essentiality and evolvability in prokaryotes, and roles in evolutionary transitions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koonin, Eugene V

    2016-01-01

    The wide spread of gene exchange and loss in the prokaryotic world has prompted the concept of 'lateral genomics' to the point of an outright denial of the relevance of phylogenetic trees for evolution. However, the pronounced coherence congruence of the topologies of numerous gene trees, particularly those for (nearly) universal genes, translates into the notion of a statistical tree of life (STOL), which reflects a central trend of vertical evolution. The STOL can be employed as a framework for reconstruction of the evolutionary processes in the prokaryotic world. Quantitatively, however, horizontal gene transfer (HGT) dominates microbial evolution, with the rate of gene gain and loss being comparable to the rate of point mutations and much greater than the duplication rate. Theoretical models of evolution suggest that HGT is essential for the survival of microbial populations that otherwise deteriorate due to the Muller's ratchet effect. Apparently, at least some bacteria and archaea evolved dedicated vehicles for gene transfer that evolved from selfish elements such as plasmids and viruses. Recent phylogenomic analyses suggest that episodes of massive HGT were pivotal for the emergence of major groups of organisms such as multiple archaeal phyla as well as eukaryotes. Similar analyses appear to indicate that, in addition to donating hundreds of genes to the emerging eukaryotic lineage, mitochondrial endosymbiosis severely curtailed HGT. These results shed new light on the routes of evolutionary transitions, but caution is due given the inherent uncertainty of deep phylogenies.

  5. Functional conservation of the Drosophila hybrid incompatibility gene Lhr

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbash Daniel A

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Hybrid incompatibilities such as sterility and lethality are commonly modeled as being caused by interactions between two genes, each of which has diverged separately in one of the hybridizing lineages. The gene Lethal hybrid rescue (Lhr encodes a rapidly evolving heterochromatin protein that causes lethality of hybrid males in crosses between Drosophila melanogaster females and D. simulans males. Previous genetic analyses showed that hybrid lethality is caused by D. simulans Lhr but not by D. melanogaster Lhr, confirming a critical prediction of asymmetry in the evolution of a hybrid incompatibility gene. Results Here we have examined the functional properties of Lhr orthologs from multiple Drosophila species, including interactions with other heterochromatin proteins, localization to heterochromatin, and ability to complement hybrid rescue in D. melanogaster/D. simulans hybrids. We find that these properties are conserved among most Lhr orthologs, including Lhr from D. melanogaster, D. simulans and the outgroup species D. yakuba. Conclusions We conclude that evolution of the hybrid lethality properties of Lhr between D. melanogaster and D. simulans did not involve extensive loss or gain of functions associated with protein interactions or localization to heterochromatin.

  6. Feature selection and classification for microarray data analysis: Evolutionary methods for identifying predictive genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aitken Stuart

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In the clinical context, samples assayed by microarray are often classified by cell line or tumour type and it is of interest to discover a set of genes that can be used as class predictors. The leukemia dataset of Golub et al. 1 and the NCI60 dataset of Ross et al. 2 present multiclass classification problems where three tumour types and nine cell lines respectively must be identified. We apply an evolutionary algorithm to identify the near-optimal set of predictive genes that classify the data. We also examine the initial gene selection step whereby the most informative genes are selected from the genes assayed. Results In the absence of feature selection, classification accuracy on the training data is typically good, but not replicated on the testing data. Gene selection using the RankGene software 3 is shown to significantly improve performance on the testing data. Further, we show that the choice of feature selection criteria can have a significant effect on accuracy. The evolutionary algorithm is shown to perform stably across the space of possible parameter settings – indicating the robustness of the approach. We assess performance using a low variance estimation technique, and present an analysis of the genes most often selected as predictors. Conclusion The computational methods we have developed perform robustly and accurately, and yield results in accord with clinical knowledge: A Z-score analysis of the genes most frequently selected identifies genes known to discriminate AML and Pre-T ALL leukemia. This study also confirms that significantly different sets of genes are found to be most discriminatory as the sample classes are refined.

  7. Conservation genomics reveals multiple evolutionary units within Bell’s Vireo (Vireo bellii).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klicka, Luke B.; Kus, Barbara E.; Title, Pascal O.; Burns, Kevin J.

    2016-01-01

    The Bell’s Vireo (Vireo bellii) is a widespread North American species of bird that has declined since the mid-1960s primarily due to habitat modification. Throughout its range, Bell’s Vireo populations are regulated under varying degrees of protection; however, the species has never been characterized genetically. Therefore, the current taxonomy used to guide management decisions may misrepresent the true evolutionary history for the species. We sequenced 86 individuals for ND2 and genotyped 48 individuals for genome-wide SNPs to identify distinct lineages within Bell’s Vireo. Phylogenetic analyses uncovered two distinct clades that are separated in the arid southwestern United States, near the border of the Chihuahuan and Sonoran Deserts. These clades diverged from each other approximately 1.11–2.04 mya. The timing of diversification, geographic location, and niche modeling of the east/west divergence suggest vicariance as a mode of diversification for these two lineages. Analyses of the SNP dataset provided additional resolution and indicated the Least Bell’s Vireo populations are a distinct evolutionary lineage. Our genetic evidence, together with information from morphology and behavior, suggests that the Bell’s Vireo complex involves two species, each containing two separate subspecies. This new information has implications for the federal, state and other listing status of Bell’s Vireo throughout its range.

  8. Proteome-Wide Discovery of Evolutionary Conserved Sequences in Disordered Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen Ba, Alex N.; Yeh, Brian J.; van Dyk, Dewald; Davidson, Alan R.; Andrews, Brenda J.; Weiss, Eric L.; Moses, Alan M.

    2016-01-01

    At least 30% of human proteins are thought to contain intrinsically disordered regions, which lack stable structural conformation. Despite lacking enzymatic functions and having few protein domains, disordered regions are functionally important for protein regulation and contain short linear motifs (short peptide sequences involved in protein-protein interactions), but in most disordered regions, the functional amino acid residues remain unknown. We searched for evolutionarily conserved sequences within disordered regions according to the hypothesis that conservation would indicate functional residues. Using a phylogenetic hidden Markov model (phylo-HMM), we made accurate, specific predictions of functional elements in disordered regions even when these elements are only two or three amino acids long. Among the conserved sequences that we identified were previously known and newly identified short linear motifs, and we experimentally verified key examples, including a motif that may mediate interaction between protein kinase Cbk1 and its substrates. We also observed that hub proteins, which interact with many partners in a protein interaction network, are highly enriched in these conserved sequences. Our analysis enabled the systematic identification of the functional residues in disordered regions and suggested that at least 5% of amino acids in disordered regions are important for function. PMID:22416277

  9. Evolutionary Dynamics of Male Reproductive Genes in the Drosophila virilis Subgroup

    OpenAIRE

    Yasir H. Ahmed-Braimah; Unckless, Robert L.; Clark, Andrew G.

    2017-01-01

    Postcopulatory sexual selection (PCSS) is a potent evolutionary force that can drive rapid changes of reproductive genes within species, and thus has the potential to generate reproductive incompatibilities between species. Male seminal fluid proteins (SFPs) are major players in postmating interactions, and are important targets of PCSS in males. The virilis subgroup of Drosophila exhibits strong interspecific gametic incompatibilities, and can serve as a model to study the genetic basis of P...

  10. Characterization and evolutionary analysis of ent-kaurene synthase like genes from the wild rice species Oryza rufipogon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toyomasu, Tomonobu; Miyamoto, Koji; Shenton, Matthew R; Sakai, Arisa; Sugawara, Chizu; Horie, Kiyotaka; Kawaide, Hiroshi; Hasegawa, Morifumi; Chuba, Masaru; Mitsuhashi, Wataru; Yamane, Hisakazu; Kurata, Nori; Okada, Kazunori

    2016-11-18

    Cultivated rice (Oryza sativa) possesses various labdane-related diterpene synthase genes, homologs of ent-copalyl diphosphate synthase (CPS) and ent-kaurene synthase (KS) that are responsible for the biosynthesis of phytohormone gibberellins. The CPS homologs and KS like (KSL) homologs successively converted geranylgeranyl diphosphate to cyclic diterpene hydrocarbons via ent-copalyl diphosphate or syn-copalyl diphosphate in O. sativa. Consequently, a variety of labdane-related diterpenoids, including phytoalexin phytocassanes, momilactones and oryzalexins, have been identified from cultivated rice. Our previous report indicated that the biosynthesis of phytocassanes and momilactones is conserved in Oryza rufipogon, the progenitor of Asian cultivated rice. Moreover, their biosynthetic gene clusters, containing OsCPS2 and OsKSL7 for phytocassane biosynthesis and OsCPS4 and OsKSL4 for momilactone biosynthesis, are also present in the O. rufipogon genome. We herein characterized O. rufipogon homologs of OsKSL5, OsKSL6, OsKSL8 responsible for oryzalexin S biosynthesis, and OsKSL10 responsible for oryzalexins A-F biosynthesis, to obtain more evolutionary insight into diterpenoid biosynthesis in O. sativa. Our phytoalexin analyses showed that no accumulation of oryzalexins was detected in extracts from O. rufipogon leaf blades. In vitro functional analyses indicated that unlike OsKSL10, O. rufipogon KSL10 functions as an ent-miltiradiene synthase, which explains the lack of accumulation of oryzalexins A-F in O. rufipogon. The different functions of KSL5 and KSL8 in O. sativa japonica to those in indica are conserved in each type of O. rufipogon, while KSL6 functions (ent-isokaurene synthases) are well conserved. Our study suggests that O. sativa japonica has evolved distinct specialized diterpenoid metabolism, including the biosynthesis of oryzalexins. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Epigenetic changes and repositioning determine the evolutionary fate of duplicated genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodin, S N; Parkhomchuk, D V; Riggs, A D

    2005-05-01

    Consideration of epigenetic silencing, perhaps by DNA methylation, led to an epigenetic complementation (EC) model for evolution by gene duplication (Rodin and Riggs (2003) J. Mol. Evol., 56, 718-729). This and subsequent work on genome-wide analyses of gene duplicates in several eukaryotic species pointed to a fundamental link between localization in the genome, epigenetic regulation of expression, and the evolutionary fate of new redundant gene copies, which can be either non- or neo-functionalization. Our main message in this report is that repositioning of a new duplicate to an ectopic site epigenetically alters its expression pattern, and concomitantly the rate and direction of mutations. Furthermore, comparison of syntenic vs. non-syntenic pairs of gene duplicates of different age unambiguously indicates that repositioning saves redundant gene duplicates from pseudogenization and hastens their evolution towards a new development-time and tissue-specific pattern of function.

  12. Gene evolutionary trajectories and GC patterns driven by recombination in Zea mays

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anitha Sundararajan

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Recombination occurring during meiosis is critical for creating genetic variation and plays an essential role in plant evolution. In addition to creating novel gene combinations, recombination can affect genome structure through altering GC patterns. In maize (Zea mays and other grasses, another intriguing GC pattern exists. Maize genes show a bimodal GC content distribution that has been attributed to nucleotide bias in the third, or wobble, position of the codon. Recombination may be an underlying driving force given that recombination sites are often associated with high GC content. Here we explore the relationship between recombination and genomic GC patterns by comparing GC gene content at each of the three codon positions (GC1, GC2, and GC3, collectively termed GCx to instances of a variable GC-rich motif that underlies double strand break (DSB hotspots and to meiocyte-specific gene expression. Surprisingly, GCx bimodality in maize cannot be fully explained by the codon wobble hypothesis. High GCx genes show a strong overlap with the DSB hotspot motif, possibly providing a mechanism for the high evolutionary rates seen in these genes. On the other hand, genes that are turned on in meiosis (early prophase I are biased against both high GCx genes and genes with the DSB hotspot motif, possibly allowing important meiotic genes to avoid DSBs. Our data suggests a strong link between the GC-rich motif underlying DSB hotspots and high GCx genes.

  13. Inference of the protokaryotypes of amniotes and tetrapods and the evolutionary processes of microchromosomes from comparative gene mapping.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yoshinobu Uno

    Full Text Available Comparative genome analysis of non-avian reptiles and amphibians provides important clues about the process of genome evolution in tetrapods. However, there is still only limited information available on the genome structures of these organisms. Consequently, the protokaryotypes of amniotes and tetrapods and the evolutionary processes of microchromosomes in tetrapods remain poorly understood. We constructed chromosome maps of functional genes for the Chinese soft-shelled turtle (Pelodiscus sinensis, the Siamese crocodile (Crocodylus siamensis, and the Western clawed frog (Xenopus tropicalis and compared them with genome and/or chromosome maps of other tetrapod species (salamander, lizard, snake, chicken, and human. This is the first report on the protokaryotypes of amniotes and tetrapods and the evolutionary processes of microchromosomes inferred from comparative genomic analysis of vertebrates, which cover all major non-avian reptilian taxa (Squamata, Crocodilia, Testudines. The eight largest macrochromosomes of the turtle and chicken were equivalent, and 11 linkage groups had also remained intact in the crocodile. Linkage groups of the chicken macrochromosomes were also highly conserved in X. tropicalis, two squamates, and the salamander, but not in human. Chicken microchromosomal linkages were conserved in the squamates, which have fewer microchromosomes than chicken, and also in Xenopus and the salamander, which both lack microchromosomes; in the latter, the chicken microchromosomal segments have been integrated into macrochromosomes. Our present findings open up the possibility that the ancestral amniotes and tetrapods had at least 10 large genetic linkage groups and many microchromosomes, which corresponded to the chicken macro- and microchromosomes, respectively. The turtle and chicken might retain the microchromosomes of the amniote protokaryotype almost intact. The decrease in number and/or disappearance of microchromosomes by repeated

  14. EST analysis in Ginkgo biloba: an assessment of conserved developmental regulators and gymnosperm specific genes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brenner, Eric D; Katari, Manpreet S; Stevenson, Dennis W; Rudd, Stephen A; Douglas, Andrew W; Moss, Walter N; Twigg, Richard W; Runko, Suzan J; Stellari, Giulia M; McCombie, WR; Coruzzi, Gloria M

    2005-01-01

    Background Ginkgo biloba L. is the only surviving member of one of the oldest living seed plant groups with medicinal, spiritual and horticultural importance worldwide. As an evolutionary relic, it displays many characters found in the early, extinct seed plants and extant cycads. To establish a molecular base to understand the evolution of seeds and pollen, we created a cDNA library and EST dataset from the reproductive structures of male (microsporangiate), female (megasporangiate), and vegetative organs (leaves) of Ginkgo biloba. Results RNA from newly emerged male and female reproductive organs and immature leaves was used to create three distinct cDNA libraries from which 6,434 ESTs were generated. These 6,434 ESTs from Ginkgo biloba were clustered into 3,830 unigenes. A comparison of our Ginkgo unigene set against the fully annotated genomes of rice and Arabidopsis, and all available ESTs in Genbank revealed that 256 Ginkgo unigenes match only genes among the gymnosperms and non-seed plants – many with multiple matches to genes in non-angiosperm plants. Conversely, another group of unigenes in Gingko had highly significant homology to transcription factors in angiosperms involved in development, including MADS box genes as well as post-transcriptional regulators. Several of the conserved developmental genes found in Ginkgo had top BLAST homology to cycad genes. We also note here the presence of ESTs in G. biloba similar to genes that to date have only been found in gymnosperms and an additional 22 Ginkgo genes common only to genes from cycads. Conclusion Our analysis of an EST dataset from G. biloba revealed genes potentially unique to gymnosperms. Many of these genes showed homology to fully sequenced clones from our cycad EST dataset found in common only with gymnosperms. Other Ginkgo ESTs are similar to developmental regulators in higher plants. This work sets the stage for future studies on Ginkgo to better understand seed and pollen evolution, and to

  15. EST analysis in Ginkgo biloba: an assessment of conserved developmental regulators and gymnosperm specific genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Runko Suzan J

    2005-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Ginkgo biloba L. is the only surviving member of one of the oldest living seed plant groups with medicinal, spiritual and horticultural importance worldwide. As an evolutionary relic, it displays many characters found in the early, extinct seed plants and extant cycads. To establish a molecular base to understand the evolution of seeds and pollen, we created a cDNA library and EST dataset from the reproductive structures of male (microsporangiate, female (megasporangiate, and vegetative organs (leaves of Ginkgo biloba. Results RNA from newly emerged male and female reproductive organs and immature leaves was used to create three distinct cDNA libraries from which 6,434 ESTs were generated. These 6,434 ESTs from Ginkgo biloba were clustered into 3,830 unigenes. A comparison of our Ginkgo unigene set against the fully annotated genomes of rice and Arabidopsis, and all available ESTs in Genbank revealed that 256 Ginkgo unigenes match only genes among the gymnosperms and non-seed plants – many with multiple matches to genes in non-angiosperm plants. Conversely, another group of unigenes in Gingko had highly significant homology to transcription factors in angiosperms involved in development, including MADS box genes as well as post-transcriptional regulators. Several of the conserved developmental genes found in Ginkgo had top BLAST homology to cycad genes. We also note here the presence of ESTs in G. biloba similar to genes that to date have only been found in gymnosperms and an additional 22 Ginkgo genes common only to genes from cycads. Conclusion Our analysis of an EST dataset from G. biloba revealed genes potentially unique to gymnosperms. Many of these genes showed homology to fully sequenced clones from our cycad EST dataset found in common only with gymnosperms. Other Ginkgo ESTs are similar to developmental regulators in higher plants. This work sets the stage for future studies on Ginkgo to better understand seed and

  16. Evolutionary genomics and adaptive evolution of the Hedgehog gene family (Shh, Ihh and Dhh in vertebrates.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joana Pereira

    Full Text Available The Hedgehog (Hh gene family codes for a class of secreted proteins composed of two active domains that act as signalling molecules during embryo development, namely for the development of the nervous and skeletal systems and the formation of the testis cord. While only one Hh gene is found typically in invertebrate genomes, most vertebrates species have three (Sonic hedgehog--Shh; Indian hedgehog--Ihh; and Desert hedgehog--Dhh, each with different expression patterns and functions, which likely helped promote the increasing complexity of vertebrates and their successful diversification. In this study, we used comparative genomic and adaptive evolutionary analyses to characterize the evolution of the Hh genes in vertebrates following the two major whole genome duplication (WGD events. To overcome the lack of Hh-coding sequences on avian publicly available databases, we used an extensive dataset of 45 avian and three non-avian reptilian genomes to show that birds have all three Hh paralogs. We find suggestions that following the WGD events, vertebrate Hh paralogous genes evolved independently within similar linkage groups and under different evolutionary rates, especially within the catalytic domain. The structural regions around the ion-binding site were identified to be under positive selection in the signaling domain. These findings contrast with those observed in invertebrates, where different lineages that experienced gene duplication retained similar selective constraints in the Hh orthologs. Our results provide new insights on the evolutionary history of the Hh gene family, the functional roles of these paralogs in vertebrate species, and on the location of mutational hotspots.

  17. Structural proteomics of minimal organisms: conservation ofprotein fold usage and evolutionary implications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chandonia, John-Marc; Kim, Sung-Hou

    2006-03-15

    Background: Determining the complete repertoire of proteinstructures for all soluble, globular proteins in a single organism hasbeen one of the major goals of several structural genomics projects inrecent years. Results: We report that this goal has nearly been reachedfor several "minimal organisms"--parasites or symbionts with reducedgenomes--for which over 95 percent of the soluble, globular proteins maynow be assigned folds, overall 3-D backbone structures. We analyze thestructures of these proteins as they relate to cellular functions, andcompare conservation off old usage between functional categories. We alsocompare patterns in the conservation off olds among minimal organisms andthose observed between minimal organisms and other bacteria. Conclusion:We find that proteins performing essential cellular functions closelyrelated to transcription and translation exhibit a higher degree ofconservation in fold usage than proteins in other functional categories.Folds related to transcription and translation functional categories werealso over represented in minimal organisms compared to otherbacteria.

  18. Comparative genomics study of polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) and ectoine relevant genes from Halomonas sp. TD01 revealed extensive horizontal gene transfer events and co-evolutionary relationships.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Lei; Tan, Dan; Aibaidula, Gulsimay; Dong, Xin-Ran; Chen, Jin-Chun; Tian, Wei-Dong; Chen, Guo-Qiang

    2011-11-01

    Halophilic bacteria have shown their significance in industrial production of polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) and are gaining more attention for genetic engineering modification. Yet, little information on the genomics and PHA related genes from halophilic bacteria have been disclosed so far. The draft genome of moderately halophilic bacterium, Halomonas sp. TD01, a strain of great potential for industrial production of short-chain-length polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA), was analyzed through computational methods to reveal the osmoregulation mechanism and the evolutionary relationship of the enzymes relevant to PHA and ectoine syntheses. Genes involved in the metabolism of PHA and osmolytes were annotated and studied in silico. Although PHA synthase, depolymerase, regulator/repressor and phasin were all involved in PHA metabolic pathways, they demonstrated different horizontal gene transfer (HGT) events between the genomes of different strains. In contrast, co-occurrence of ectoine genes in the same genome was more frequently observed, and ectoine genes were more likely under coincidental horizontal gene transfer than PHA related genes. In addition, the adjacent organization of the homologues of PHA synthase phaC1 and PHA granule binding protein phaP was conserved in the strain TD01, which was also observed in some halophiles and non-halophiles exclusively from γ-proteobacteria. In contrast to haloarchaea, the proteome of Halomonas sp. TD01 did not show obvious inclination towards acidity relative to non-halophilic Escherichia coli MG1655, which signified that Halomonas sp. TD01 preferred the accumulation of organic osmolytes to ions in order to balance the intracellular osmotic pressure with the environment. The accessibility of genome information would facilitate research on the genetic engineering of halophilic bacteria including Halomonas sp. TD01.

  19. Comparative genomics study of polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA and ectoine relevant genes from Halomonas sp. TD01 revealed extensive horizontal gene transfer events and co-evolutionary relationships

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cai Lei

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Halophilic bacteria have shown their significance in industrial production of polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA and are gaining more attention for genetic engineering modification. Yet, little information on the genomics and PHA related genes from halophilic bacteria have been disclosed so far. Results The draft genome of moderately halophilic bacterium, Halomonas sp. TD01, a strain of great potential for industrial production of short-chain-length polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA, was analyzed through computational methods to reveal the osmoregulation mechanism and the evolutionary relationship of the enzymes relevant to PHA and ectoine syntheses. Genes involved in the metabolism of PHA and osmolytes were annotated and studied in silico. Although PHA synthase, depolymerase, regulator/repressor and phasin were all involved in PHA metabolic pathways, they demonstrated different horizontal gene transfer (HGT events between the genomes of different strains. In contrast, co-occurrence of ectoine genes in the same genome was more frequently observed, and ectoine genes were more likely under coincidental horizontal gene transfer than PHA related genes. In addition, the adjacent organization of the homologues of PHA synthase phaC1 and PHA granule binding protein phaP was conserved in the strain TD01, which was also observed in some halophiles and non-halophiles exclusively from γ-proteobacteria. In contrast to haloarchaea, the proteome of Halomonas sp. TD01 did not show obvious inclination towards acidity relative to non-halophilic Escherichia coli MG1655, which signified that Halomonas sp. TD01 preferred the accumulation of organic osmolytes to ions in order to balance the intracellular osmotic pressure with the environment. Conclusions The accessibility of genome information would facilitate research on the genetic engineering of halophilic bacteria including Halomonas sp. TD01.

  20. Evolutionary genomics and adaptive evolution of the hedgehog gene family (Shh, Ihh and Dhh) in vertebrates

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pereira, Joana; Johnson, Warren E.; O'Brien, Stephen J.

    2014-01-01

    . In this study, we used comparative genomic and adaptive evolutionary analyses to characterize the evolution of the Hh genes in vertebrates following the two major whole genome duplication (WGD) events. To overcome the lack of Hh-coding sequences on avian publicly available databases, we used an extensive...... the catalytic domain. The structural regions around the ion-binding site were identified to be under positive selection in the signaling domain. These findings contrast with those observed in invertebrates, where different lineages that experienced gene duplication retained similar selective constraints...

  1. Evolutionary history of the third chromosome gene arrangements of Drosophila pseudoobscura inferred from inversion breakpoints.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallace, Andre G; Detweiler, Don; Schaeffer, Stephen W

    2011-08-01

    The third chromosome of Drosophila pseudoobscura is polymorphic for numerous gene arrangements that form classical clines in North America. The polytene salivary chromosomes isolated from natural populations revealed changes in gene order that allowed the different gene arrangements to be linked together by paracentric inversions representing one of the first cases where genetic data were used to construct a phylogeny. Although the inversion phylogeny can be used to determine the relationships among the gene arrangements, the cytogenetic data are unable to infer the ancestral arrangement or the age of the different chromosome types. These are both important properties if one is to infer the evolutionary forces responsible for the spread and maintenance of the chromosomes. Here, we employ the nucleotide sequences of 18 regions distributed across the third chromosome in 80-100 D. pseudoobscura strains to test whether five gene arrangements are of unique or multiple origin, what the ancestral arrangement was, and what are the ages of the different arrangements. Each strain carried one of six commonly found gene arrangements and the sequences were used to infer their evolutionary relationships. Breakpoint regions in the center of the chromosome supported monophyly of the gene arrangements, whereas regions at the ends of the chromosome gave phylogenies that provided less support for monophyly of the chromosomes either because the individual markers did not have enough phylogenetically informative sites or genetic exchange scrambled information among the gene arrangements. A data set where the genetic markers were concatenated strongly supported a unique origin of the different gene arrangements. The inversion polymorphism of D. pseudoobscura is estimated to be about a million years old. We have also shown that the generated phylogeny is consistent with the cytological phylogeny of this species. In addition, the data presented here support hypothetical as the ancestral

  2. The Populus ARBORKNOX1 homeodomain transcription factor regulates woody growth through binding to evolutionarily conserved target genes of diverse function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Lijun; Zinkgraf, Matthew; Petzold, H Earl; Beers, Eric P; Filkov, Vladimir; Groover, Andrew

    2015-01-01

    The class I KNOX homeodomain transcription factor ARBORKNOX1 (ARK1) is a key regulator of vascular cambium maintenance and cell differentiation in Populus. Currently, basic information is lacking concerning the distribution, functional characteristics, and evolution of ARK1 binding in the Populus genome. Here, we used chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing (ChIP-seq) technology to identify ARK1 binding loci genome-wide in Populus. Computational analyses evaluated the distribution of ARK1 binding loci, the function of genes associated with bound loci, the effect of ARK1 binding on transcript levels, and evolutionary conservation of ARK1 binding loci. ARK1 binds to thousands of loci which are highly enriched proximal to the transcriptional start sites of genes of diverse functions. ARK1 target genes are significantly enriched in paralogs derived from the whole-genome salicoid duplication event. Both ARK1 and a maize (Zea mays) homolog, KNOTTED1, preferentially target evolutionarily conserved genes. However, only a small portion of ARK1 target genes are significantly differentially expressed in an ARK1 over-expression mutant. This study describes the functional characteristics and evolution of DNA binding by a transcription factor in an undomesticated tree, revealing complexities similar to those shown for transcription factors in model animal species. No claim to original US Government works. New Phytologist © 2014 New Phytologist Trust.

  3. Evolutionary history of the HAP2/GCS1 gene and sexual reproduction in metazoans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert E Steele

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available The HAP2/GCS1 gene first appeared in the common ancestor of plants, animals, and protists, and is required in the male gamete for fusion to the female gamete in the unicellular organisms Chlamydomonas and Plasmodium. We have identified a HAP2/GCS1 gene in the genome sequence of the sponge Amphimedon queenslandica. This finding provides a continuous evolutionary history of HAP2/GCS1 from unicellular organisms into the metazoan lineage. Divergent versions of the HAP2/GCS1 gene are also present in the genomes of some but not all arthropods. By examining the expression of the HAP2/GCS1 gene in the cnidarian Hydra, we have found the first evidence supporting the hypothesis that HAP2/GCS1 was used for male gamete fusion in the ancestor of extant metazoans and that it retains that function in modern cnidarians.

  4. Comparative Mitogenomics of the Genus Odontobutis (Perciformes: Gobioidei: Odontobutidae) Revealed Conserved Gene Rearrangement and High Sequence Variations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Zhihong; Yang, Xuefen; Bercsenyi, Miklos; Wu, Junjie; Yu, Yongyao; Wei, Kaijian; Fan, Qixue; Yang, Ruibin

    2015-10-20

    To understand the molecular evolution of mitochondrial genomes (mitogenomes) in the genus Odontobutis, the mitogenome of Odontobutis yaluensis was sequenced and compared with those of another four Odontobutis species. Our results displayed similar mitogenome features among species in genome organization, base composition, codon usage, and gene rearrangement. The identical gene rearrangement of trnS-trnL-trnH tRNA cluster observed in mitogenomes of these five closely related freshwater sleepers suggests that this unique gene order is conserved within Odontobutis. Additionally, the present gene order and the positions of associated intergenic spacers of these Odontobutis mitogenomes indicate that this unusual gene rearrangement results from tandem duplication and random loss of large-scale gene regions. Moreover, these mitogenomes exhibit a high level of sequence variation, mainly due to the differences of corresponding intergenic sequences in gene rearrangement regions and the heterogeneity of tandem repeats in the control regions. Phylogenetic analyses support Odontobutis species with shared gene rearrangement forming a monophyletic group, and the interspecific phylogenetic relationships are associated with structural differences among their mitogenomes. The present study contributes to understanding the evolutionary patterns of Odontobutidae species.

  5. Lineage-Specific Evolutionary Histories and Regulation of Major Starch Metabolism Genes during Banana Ripening

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jourda, Cyril; Cardi, Céline; Gibert, Olivier; Giraldo Toro, Andrès; Ricci, Julien; Mbéguié-A-Mbéguié, Didier; Yahiaoui, Nabila

    2016-01-01

    Starch is the most widespread and abundant storage carbohydrate in plants. It is also a major feature of cultivated bananas as it accumulates to large amounts during banana fruit development before almost complete conversion to soluble sugars during ripening. Little is known about the structure of major gene families involved in banana starch metabolism and their evolution compared to other species. To identify genes involved in banana starch metabolism and investigate their evolutionary history, we analyzed six gene families playing a crucial role in plant starch biosynthesis and degradation: the ADP-glucose pyrophosphorylases (AGPases), starch synthases (SS), starch branching enzymes (SBE), debranching enzymes (DBE), α-amylases (AMY) and β-amylases (BAM). Using comparative genomics and phylogenetic approaches, these genes were classified into families and sub-families and orthology relationships with functional genes in Eudicots and in grasses were identified. In addition to known ancestral duplications shaping starch metabolism gene families, independent evolution in banana and grasses also occurred through lineage-specific whole genome duplications for specific sub-families of AGPase, SS, SBE, and BAM genes; and through gene-scale duplications for AMY genes. In particular, banana lineage duplications yielded a set of AGPase, SBE and BAM genes that were highly or specifically expressed in banana fruits. Gene expression analysis highlighted a complex transcriptional reprogramming of starch metabolism genes during ripening of banana fruits. A differential regulation of expression between banana gene duplicates was identified for SBE and BAM genes, suggesting that part of starch metabolism regulation in the fruit evolved in the banana lineage. PMID:27994606

  6. Lineage-specific Evolutionary Histories and Regulation of Major Starch Metabolism Genes during Banana Ripening

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cyril Jourda

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Starch is the most widespread and abundant storage carbohydrate in plants. It is also a major feature of cultivated bananas as it accumulates to large amounts during banana fruit development before almost complete conversion to soluble sugars during ripening. Little is known about the structure of major gene families involved in banana starch metabolism and their evolution compared to other species. To identify genes involved in banana starch metabolism and investigate their evolutionary history, we analyzed six gene families playing a crucial role in plant starch biosynthesis and degradation: the ADP-glucose pyrophosphorylases (AGPases, starch synthases (SS, starch branching enzymes (SBE, debranching enzymes (DBE, -amylases (AMY and -amylases (BAM. Using comparative genomics and phylogenetic approaches, these genes were classified into families and sub-families and orthology relationships with functional genes in Eudicots and in grasses were identified. In addition to known ancestral duplications shaping starch metabolism gene families, independent evolution in banana and grasses also occurred through lineage-specific whole genome duplications for specific sub-families of AGPases, SS, SBE and BAM genes; and through gene-scale duplications for AMY genes. In particular, banana lineage duplications yielded a set of AGPases, SBE and BAM genes that were highly or specifically expressed in banana fruits. Gene expression analysis highlighted a complex transcriptional reprogramming of starch metabolism genes during ripening of banana fruits. A differential regulation of expression between banana gene duplicates was identified for SBE and BAM genes, suggesting that part of starch metabolism regulation in the fruit evolved in the banana lineage

  7. Lineage-Specific Evolutionary Histories and Regulation of Major Starch Metabolism Genes during Banana Ripening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jourda, Cyril; Cardi, Céline; Gibert, Olivier; Giraldo Toro, Andrès; Ricci, Julien; Mbéguié-A-Mbéguié, Didier; Yahiaoui, Nabila

    2016-01-01

    Starch is the most widespread and abundant storage carbohydrate in plants. It is also a major feature of cultivated bananas as it accumulates to large amounts during banana fruit development before almost complete conversion to soluble sugars during ripening. Little is known about the structure of major gene families involved in banana starch metabolism and their evolution compared to other species. To identify genes involved in banana starch metabolism and investigate their evolutionary history, we analyzed six gene families playing a crucial role in plant starch biosynthesis and degradation: the ADP-glucose pyrophosphorylases (AGPases), starch synthases (SS), starch branching enzymes (SBE), debranching enzymes (DBE), α-amylases (AMY) and β-amylases (BAM). Using comparative genomics and phylogenetic approaches, these genes were classified into families and sub-families and orthology relationships with functional genes in Eudicots and in grasses were identified. In addition to known ancestral duplications shaping starch metabolism gene families, independent evolution in banana and grasses also occurred through lineage-specific whole genome duplications for specific sub-families of AGPase, SS, SBE, and BAM genes; and through gene-scale duplications for AMY genes. In particular, banana lineage duplications yielded a set of AGPase, SBE and BAM genes that were highly or specifically expressed in banana fruits. Gene expression analysis highlighted a complex transcriptional reprogramming of starch metabolism genes during ripening of banana fruits. A differential regulation of expression between banana gene duplicates was identified for SBE and BAM genes, suggesting that part of starch metabolism regulation in the fruit evolved in the banana lineage.

  8. Deep evolutionary comparison of gene expression identifies parallel recruitment of trans-factors in two independent origins of C4 photosynthesis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sylvain Aubry

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available With at least 60 independent origins spanning monocotyledons and dicotyledons, the C4 photosynthetic pathway represents one of the most remarkable examples of convergent evolution. The recurrent evolution of this highly complex trait involving alterations to leaf anatomy, cell biology and biochemistry allows an increase in productivity by ∼ 50% in tropical and subtropical areas. The extent to which separate lineages of C4 plants use the same genetic networks to maintain C4 photosynthesis is unknown. We developed a new informatics framework to enable deep evolutionary comparison of gene expression in species lacking reference genomes. We exploited this to compare gene expression in species representing two independent C4 lineages (Cleome gynandra and Zea mays whose last common ancestor diverged ∼ 140 million years ago. We define a cohort of 3,335 genes that represent conserved components of leaf and photosynthetic development in these species. Furthermore, we show that genes encoding proteins of the C4 cycle are recruited into networks defined by photosynthesis-related genes. Despite the wide evolutionary separation and independent origins of the C4 phenotype, we report that these species use homologous transcription factors to both induce C4 photosynthesis and to maintain the cell specific gene expression required for the pathway to operate. We define a core molecular signature associated with leaf and photosynthetic maturation that is likely shared by angiosperm species derived from the last common ancestor of the monocotyledons and dicotyledons. We show that deep evolutionary comparisons of gene expression can reveal novel insight into the molecular convergence of highly complex phenotypes and that parallel evolution of trans-factors underpins the repeated appearance of C4 photosynthesis. Thus, exploitation of extant natural variation associated with complex traits can be used to identify regulators. Moreover, the transcription factors

  9. Deep Evolutionary Comparison of Gene Expression Identifies Parallel Recruitment of Trans-Factors in Two Independent Origins of C4 Photosynthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kümpers, Britta M. C.; Smith-Unna, Richard D.; Hibberd, Julian M.

    2014-01-01

    With at least 60 independent origins spanning monocotyledons and dicotyledons, the C4 photosynthetic pathway represents one of the most remarkable examples of convergent evolution. The recurrent evolution of this highly complex trait involving alterations to leaf anatomy, cell biology and biochemistry allows an increase in productivity by ∼50% in tropical and subtropical areas. The extent to which separate lineages of C4 plants use the same genetic networks to maintain C4 photosynthesis is unknown. We developed a new informatics framework to enable deep evolutionary comparison of gene expression in species lacking reference genomes. We exploited this to compare gene expression in species representing two independent C4 lineages (Cleome gynandra and Zea mays) whose last common ancestor diverged ∼140 million years ago. We define a cohort of 3,335 genes that represent conserved components of leaf and photosynthetic development in these species. Furthermore, we show that genes encoding proteins of the C4 cycle are recruited into networks defined by photosynthesis-related genes. Despite the wide evolutionary separation and independent origins of the C4 phenotype, we report that these species use homologous transcription factors to both induce C4 photosynthesis and to maintain the cell specific gene expression required for the pathway to operate. We define a core molecular signature associated with leaf and photosynthetic maturation that is likely shared by angiosperm species derived from the last common ancestor of the monocotyledons and dicotyledons. We show that deep evolutionary comparisons of gene expression can reveal novel insight into the molecular convergence of highly complex phenotypes and that parallel evolution of trans-factors underpins the repeated appearance of C4 photosynthesis. Thus, exploitation of extant natural variation associated with complex traits can be used to identify regulators. Moreover, the transcription factors that are shared by

  10. Evolutionary dynamics of rRNA gene clusters in cichlid fish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nakajima Rafael T

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Among multigene families, ribosomal RNA (rRNA genes are the most frequently studied and have been explored as cytogenetic markers to study the evolutionary history of karyotypes among animals and plants. In this report, we applied cytogenetic and genomic methods to investigate the organization of rRNA genes among cichlid fishes. Cichlids are a group of fishes that are of increasing scientific interest due to their rapid and convergent adaptive radiation, which has led to extensive ecological diversity. Results The present paper reports the cytogenetic mapping of the 5S rRNA genes from 18 South American, 22 African and one Asian species and the 18S rRNA genes from 3 African species. The data obtained were comparatively analyzed with previously published information related to the mapping of rRNA genes in cichlids. The number of 5S rRNA clusters per diploid genome ranged from 2 to 15, with the most common pattern being the presence of 2 chromosomes bearing a 5S rDNA cluster. Regarding 18S rDNA mapping, the number of sites ranged from 2 to 6, with the most common pattern being the presence of 2 sites per diploid genome. Furthermore, searching the Oreochromis niloticus genome database led to the identification of a total of 59 copies of 5S rRNA and 38 copies of 18S rRNA genes that were distributed in several genomic scaffolds. The rRNA genes were frequently flanked by transposable elements (TEs and spread throughout the genome, complementing the FISH analysis that detect only clustered copies of rRNA genes. Conclusions The organization of rRNA gene clusters seems to reflect their intense and particular evolutionary pathway and not the evolutionary history of the associated taxa. The possible role of TEs as one source of rRNA gene movement, that could generates the spreading of ribosomal clusters/copies, is discussed. The present paper reinforces the notion that the integration of cytogenetic data and genomic analysis provides a

  11. PHYLOGENOMICS - GUIDED VALIDATION OF FUNCTION FOR CONSERVED UNKNOWN GENES

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    V, DE CRECY-LAGARD; D, HANSON A

    2012-01-03

    Identifying functions for all gene products in all sequenced organisms is a central challenge of the post-genomic era. However, at least 30-50% of the proteins encoded by any given genome are of unknown function, or wrongly or vaguely annotated. Many of these 'unknown' proteins are common to prokaryotes and plants. We accordingly set out to predict and experimentally test the functions of such proteins. Our approach to functional prediction is integrative, coupling the extensive post-genomic resources available for plants with comparative genomics based on hundreds of microbial genomes, and functional genomic datasets from model microorganisms. The early phase is computer-assisted; later phases incorporate intellectual input from expert plant and microbial biochemists. The approach thus bridges the gap between automated homology-based annotations and the classical gene discovery efforts of experimentalists, and is much more powerful than purely computational approaches to identifying gene-function associations. Among Arabidopsis genes, we focused on those (2,325 in total) that (i) are unique or belong to families with no more than three members, (ii) are conserved between plants and prokaryotes, and (iii) have unknown or poorly known functions. Computer-assisted selection of promising targets for deeper analysis was based on homology .. independent characteristics associated in the SEED database with the prokaryotic members of each family, specifically gene clustering and phyletic spread, as well as availability of functional genomics data, and publications that could link candidate families to general metabolic areas, or to specific functions. In-depth comparative genomic analysis was then performed for about 500 top candidate families, which connected ~55 of them to general areas of metabolism and led to specific functional predictions for a subset of ~25 more. Twenty predicted functions were experimentally tested in at least one prokaryotic organism

  12. Incorporating evolutionary principles into environmental management and policy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lankau, Richard; Jørgensen, Peter Søgaard; Harris, David J.

    2011-01-01

    in conservation biology, and the necessary next step for the field is to consider ways in which conservation policy makers and managers can proactively manipulate evolutionary processes to achieve their goals. In this review, we aim to illustrate the potential conservation benefits of an increased understanding......As policymakers and managers work to mitigate the effects of rapid anthropogenic environmental changes, they need to consider organisms’ responses. In light of recent evidence that evolution can be quite rapid, this now includes evolutionary responses. Evolutionary principles have a long history...... of evolutionary history and prescriptive manipulation of three basic evolutionary factors: selection, variation, and gene flow. For each, we review and propose ways that policy makers and managers can use evolutionary thinking to preserve threatened species, combat pest species, or reduce undesirable evolutionary...

  13. Comprehensive analysis of the flowering genes in Chinese cabbage and examination of evolutionary pattern of CO-like genes in plant kingdom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Xiaoming; Duan, Weike; Huang, Zhinan; Liu, Gaofeng; Wu, Peng; Liu, Tongkun; Li, Ying; Hou, Xilin

    2015-09-01

    In plants, flowering is the most important transition from vegetative to reproductive growth. The flowering patterns of monocots and eudicots are distinctly different, but few studies have described the evolutionary patterns of the flowering genes in them. In this study, we analysed the evolutionary pattern, duplication and expression level of these genes. The main results were as follows: (i) characterization of flowering genes in monocots and eudicots, including the identification of family-specific, orthologous and collinear genes; (ii) full characterization of CONSTANS-like genes in Brassica rapa (BraCOL genes), the key flowering genes; (iii) exploration of the evolution of COL genes in plant kingdom and construction of the evolutionary pattern of COL genes; (iv) comparative analysis of CO and FT genes between Brassicaceae and Grass, which identified several family-specific amino acids, and revealed that CO and FT protein structures were similar in B. rapa and Arabidopsis but different in rice; and (v) expression analysis of photoperiod pathway-related genes in B. rapa under different photoperiod treatments by RT-qPCR. This analysis will provide resources for understanding the flowering mechanisms and evolutionary pattern of COL genes. In addition, this genome-wide comparative study of COL genes may also provide clues for evolution of other flowering genes.

  14. Gene selection for microarray cancer classification using a new evolutionary method employing artificial intelligence concepts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dashtban, M; Balafar, Mohammadali

    2017-03-01

    Gene selection is a demanding task for microarray data analysis. The diverse complexity of different cancers makes this issue still challenging. In this study, a novel evolutionary method based on genetic algorithms and artificial intelligence is proposed to identify predictive genes for cancer classification. A filter method was first applied to reduce the dimensionality of feature space followed by employing an integer-coded genetic algorithm with dynamic-length genotype, intelligent parameter settings, and modified operators. The algorithmic behaviors including convergence trends, mutation and crossover rate changes, and running time were studied, conceptually discussed, and shown to be coherent with literature findings. Two well-known filter methods, Laplacian and Fisher score, were examined considering similarities, the quality of selected genes, and their influences on the evolutionary approach. Several statistical tests concerning choice of classifier, choice of dataset, and choice of filter method were performed, and they revealed some significant differences between the performance of different classifiers and filter methods over datasets. The proposed method was benchmarked upon five popular high-dimensional cancer datasets; for each, top explored genes were reported. Comparing the experimental results with several state-of-the-art methods revealed that the proposed method outperforms previous methods in DLBCL dataset. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Evolutionary Origin, Gradual Accumulation and Functional Divergence of Heat Shock Factor Gene Family with Plant Evolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaoming Wang

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Plants, as sessile organisms, evolved a complex and functionally diverse heat shock factor (HSF gene family to cope with various environmental stresses. However, the limited evolution studies of the HSF gene family have hindered our understanding of environmental adaptations in plants. In this study, a comprehensive evolution analysis on the HSF gene family was performed in 51 representative plant species. Our results demonstrated that the HSFB group which lacks a typical AHA activation domain, was the most ancient, and is under stronger purifying selection pressure in the subsequent evolutionary processes. While, dramatic gene expansion and functional divergence occurred at evolution timescales corresponding to plant land inhabit, which contribute to the emergence and diversification of the HSFA and HSFC groups in land plants. During the plant evolution, the ancestral functions of HSFs were maintained by strong purifying pressure that acted on the DNA binding domain, while the variable oligomerization domain and motif organization of HSFs underwent functional divergence and generated novel subfamilies. At the same time, variations were further accumulated with plant evolution, and this resulted in remarkable functional diversification among higher plant lineages, including distinct HSF numbers and selection pressures of several HSF subfamilies between monocots and eudicots, highlighting the fundamental differences in different plant lineages in response to environmental stresses. Taken together, our study provides novel insights into the evolutionary origin, pattern and selection pressure of plant HSFs and delineates critical clues that aid our understanding of the adaptation processes of plants to terrestrial environments.

  16. Diverse evolutionary trajectories for small RNA biogenesis genes in the oomycete genus Phytophthora

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanie eBollmann

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Gene regulation by small RNA pathways is ubiquitous among eukaryotes, but little is known about small RNA pathways in the Stramenopile kingdom. Phytophthora, a genus of filamentous oomycetes, contains many devastating plant pathogens, causing multibillion-dollar damage to crops, ornamental plants, and natural environments. The genomes of several oomycetes including Phytophthora species such as the soybean pathogen P. sojae, have been sequenced, allowing evolutionary analysis of small RNA-processing enzymes. This study examined the evolutionary origins of the oomycete small RNA-related genes Dicer-like (DCL, and RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RDR through broad phylogenetic analyses of the key domains. Two Dicer gene homologs, DCL1 and DCL2, and one RDR homolog were cloned and analyzed from P. sojae. Gene expression analysis revealed only minor changes in transcript levels among different life stages. Oomycete DCL1 homologs clustered with animal and plant Dicer homologs in evolutionary trees, whereas oomycete DCL2 homologs clustered basally to the tree along with Drosha homologs. Phylogenetic analysis of the RDR homologs confirmed a previous study that suggested the last common eukaryote ancestor possessed three RDR homologs, which were selectively retained or lost in later lineages. Our analysis clarifies the position of some Unikont and Chromalveolate RDR lineages within the tree, including oomycete homologs. Finally, we analyzed alterations in the domain structure of oomycete Dicer and RDR homologs, specifically focusing on the proposed domain transfer of the DEAD-box helicase domain from Dicer to RDR. Implications of the oomycete domain structure are discussed, and possible roles of the two oomycete Dicer homologs are proposed.

  17. Prevalent Role of Gene Features in Determining Evolutionary Fates of Whole-Genome Duplication Duplicated Genes in Flowering Plants1[W][OA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Wen-kai; Liu, Yun-long; Xia, En-hua; Gao, Li-zhi

    2013-01-01

    The evolution of genes and genomes after polyploidization has been the subject of extensive studies in evolutionary biology and plant sciences. While a significant number of duplicated genes are rapidly removed during a process called fractionation, which operates after the whole-genome duplication (WGD), another considerable number of genes are retained preferentially, leading to the phenomenon of biased gene retention. However, the evolutionary mechanisms underlying gene retention after WGD remain largely unknown. Through genome-wide analyses of sequence and functional data, we comprehensively investigated the relationships between gene features and the retention probability of duplicated genes after WGDs in six plant genomes, Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), poplar (Populus trichocarpa), soybean (Glycine max), rice (Oryza sativa), sorghum (Sorghum bicolor), and maize (Zea mays). The results showed that multiple gene features were correlated with the probability of gene retention. Using a logistic regression model based on principal component analysis, we resolved evolutionary rate, structural complexity, and GC3 content as the three major contributors to gene retention. Cluster analysis of these features further classified retained genes into three distinct groups in terms of gene features and evolutionary behaviors. Type I genes are more prone to be selected by dosage balance; type II genes are possibly subject to subfunctionalization; and type III genes may serve as potential targets for neofunctionalization. This study highlights that gene features are able to act jointly as primary forces when determining the retention and evolution of WGD-derived duplicated genes in flowering plants. These findings thus may help to provide a resolution to the debate on different evolutionary models of gene fates after WGDs. PMID:23396833

  18. The scale and evolutionary significance of horizontal gene transfer in the choanoflagellate Monosiga brevicollis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yue, Jipei; Sun, Guiling; Hu, Xiangyang; Huang, Jinling

    2013-10-25

    It is generally agreed that horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is common in phagotrophic protists. However, the overall scale of HGT and the cumulative impact of acquired genes on the evolution of these organisms remain largely unknown. Choanoflagellates are phagotrophs and the closest living relatives of animals. In this study, we performed phylogenomic analyses to investigate the scale of HGT and the evolutionary importance of horizontally acquired genes in the choanoflagellate Monosiga brevicollis. Our analyses identified 405 genes that are likely derived from algae and prokaryotes, accounting for approximately 4.4% of the Monosiga nuclear genome. Many of the horizontally acquired genes identified in Monosiga were probably acquired from food sources, rather than by endosymbiotic gene transfer (EGT) from obsolete endosymbionts or plastids. Of 193 genes identified in our analyses with functional information, 84 (43.5%) are involved in carbohydrate or amino acid metabolism, and 45 (23.3%) are transporters and/or involved in response to oxidative, osmotic, antibiotic, or heavy metal stresses. Some identified genes may also participate in biosynthesis of important metabolites such as vitamins C and K12, porphyrins and phospholipids. Our results suggest that HGT is frequent in Monosiga brevicollis and might have contributed substantially to its adaptation and evolution. This finding also highlights the importance of HGT in the genome and organismal evolution of phagotrophic eukaryotes.

  19. An Evolutionary-Conserved Function of Mammalian Notch Family Members as Cell Adhesion Molecules

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murata, Akihiko; Yoshino, Miya; Hikosaka, Mari; Okuyama, Kazuki; Zhou, Lan; Sakano, Seiji; Yagita, Hideo; Hayashi, Shin-Ichi

    2014-01-01

    Notch family members were first identified as cell adhesion molecules by cell aggregation assays in Drosophila studies. However, they are generally recognized as signaling molecules, and it was unclear if their adhesion function was restricted to Drosophila. We previously demonstrated that a mouse Notch ligand, Delta-like 1 (Dll1) functioned as a cell adhesion molecule. We here investigated whether this adhesion function was conserved in the diversified mammalian Notch ligands consisted of two families, Delta-like (Dll1, Dll3 and Dll4) and Jagged (Jag1 and Jag2). The forced expression of mouse Dll1, Dll4, Jag1, and Jag2, but not Dll3, on stromal cells induced the rapid and enhanced adhesion of cultured mast cells (MCs). This was attributed to the binding of Notch1 and Notch2 on MCs to each Notch ligand on the stromal cells themselves, and not the activation of Notch signaling. Notch receptor-ligand binding strongly supported the tethering of MCs to stromal cells, the first step of cell adhesion. However, the Jag2-mediated adhesion of MCs was weaker and unlike other ligands appeared to require additional factor(s) in addition to the receptor-ligand binding. Taken together, these results demonstrated that the function of cell adhesion was conserved in mammalian as well as Drosophila Notch family members. Since Notch receptor-ligand interaction plays important roles in a broad spectrum of biological processes ranging from embryogenesis to disorders, our finding will provide a new perspective on these issues from the aspect of cell adhesion. PMID:25255288

  20. Integrated pipeline for inferring the evolutionary history of a gene family embedded in the species tree: a case study on the STIMATE gene family.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Jia; Zheng, Sisi; Nguyen, Nhung; Wang, Youjun; Zhou, Yubin; Lin, Kui

    2017-10-03

    Because phylogenetic inference is an important basis for answering many evolutionary problems, a large number of algorithms have been developed. Some of these algorithms have been improved by integrating gene evolution models with the expectation of accommodating the hierarchy of evolutionary processes. To the best of our knowledge, however, there still is no single unifying model or algorithm that can take all evolutionary processes into account through a stepwise or simultaneous method. On the basis of three existing phylogenetic inference algorithms, we built an integrated pipeline for inferring the evolutionary history of a given gene family; this pipeline can model gene sequence evolution, gene duplication-loss, gene transfer and multispecies coalescent processes. As a case study, we applied this pipeline to the STIMATE (TMEM110) gene family, which has recently been reported to play an important role in store-operated Ca 2+ entry (SOCE) mediated by ORAI and STIM proteins. We inferred their phylogenetic trees in 69 sequenced chordate genomes. By integrating three tree reconstruction algorithms with diverse evolutionary models, a pipeline for inferring the evolutionary history of a gene family was developed, and its application was demonstrated.

  1. Gene conservation of tree species—banking on the future. Proceedings of a workshop.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richard A. Sniezko; Gary Man; Valerie Hipkins; Keith Woeste; David Gwaze; John T. Kliejunas; Brianna A. McTeague

    2017-01-01

    The ‘Gene Conservation of Tree Species—Banking on the Future Workshop’ provided a forum for presenting and discussing issues and accomplishments in genetic conservation of trees, and notably those of North America. The meeting gathered scientists, specialists, administrators and conservation practitioners from federal, university, non-governmental and public garden...

  2. Evolutionary Genomics and Conservation of the Endangered Przewalski’s Horse

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Der Sarkissian, Clio; Ermini, Luca; Schubert, Mikkel

    2015-01-01

    and short legs, they are phenotypically and behaviorally distinct from domesticated horses (DHs, Equus caballus). Here, we sequenced the complete genomes of 11 PHs, representing all founding lineages, and five historical specimens dated to 1878–1929 CE, including the Holotype. These were compared...... to the hitherto-most-extensive genome dataset characterized for horses, comprising 21 new genomes. We found that loci showing the most genetic differentiation with DHs were enriched in genes involved in metabolism, cardiac disorders, muscle contraction, reproduction, behavior, and signaling pathways. We also show...... that DH and PH populations split ∼45,000 years ago and have remained connected by gene-flow thereafter. Finally, we monitor the genomic impact of ∼110 years of captivity, revealing reduced heterozygosity, increased inbreeding, and variable introgression of domestic alleles, ranging from non...

  3. Forest gene conservation from the perspective of the international community

    Science.gov (United States)

    M. Hosny El-Lakany

    2017-01-01

    conservation of forest genetic resources (FGR). After presenting internationally adopted definitions of some terms related to FGR, the characteristics of the current state of FGR conservation from a global perspective are summarized. Many international and regional organizations and institutions are engaged in the conservation of FGR at degrees ranging from...

  4. Molecular cloning, sequencing and tissue expression of vasotocin and isotocin precursor genes from Ostariophysian catfishes: Phylogeny and evolutionary considerations in teleosts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Putul eBanerjee

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Basic and neutral neurohypophyseal (NH nonapeptides have evolved from vasotocin (VT by a gene duplication at the base of the gnathostome lineage. In teleosts, VT and IT are the basic and neutral peptides, respectively. In the present study, VT and IT precursor genes of Heteropneustes fossilis and Clarias batrachus (Siluriformes, Ostariophysi were cloned and sequenced. The channel catfish Icatalurus punctatus NH precursor sequences were obtained from EST database. The catfish NH sequences were used along with the available Acanthopterygii and other vertebrate NH precursor sequences to draw phylogenetic inference on the evolutionary history of the teleost NH peptides. Synteny analysis of the NH gene loci in various teleost species was done to complement the phylogenetic analysis. In H. fossilis, the NH transcripts were also sequenced from the ovary. The cloned genes and the deduced precursor proteins showed conserved characteristics of the NH nonapeptide precursors. The genes are expressed in brain and ovary (follicular envelope of H. fossilis with higher transcript abundance in the brain. The addition of the catfish sequences in the phylogenetic analysis revealed that the VT and IT precursors of the species-rich superorders of teleosts have a distinct phylogenetic history with the Acanthopterygii VT and IT precursors sharing a less evolutionary distance and the Ostariophysi VT and IT having a greater evolutionary distance. The genomic location of VT and IT precursors, and synteny analysis of the NH loci lend support to the phylogenetic inference and suggest a footprint of fish- specific whole genome duplication (3R and subsequent diploidization in the NH loci. The VT and IT precursor genes are most likely lineage-specific paralogs resulting from differential losses of the 3R NH paralogs in the two superorders. The independent yet consistent retention of VT and IT in the two superorders might be directed by a stringent ligand-receptor selectivity.

  5. Evolutionary Genetics of Cytoplasmic Incompatibility Genes cifA and cifB in Prophage WO of Wolbachia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindsey, Amelia R I; Rice, Danny W; Bordenstein, Sarah R; Brooks, Andrew W

    2018-01-01

    Abstract The bacterial endosymbiont Wolbachia manipulates arthropod reproduction to facilitate its maternal spread through host populations. The most common manipulation is cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI): Wolbachia-infected males produce modified sperm that cause embryonic mortality, unless rescued by embryos harboring the same Wolbachia. The genes underlying CI, cifA and cifB, were recently identified in the eukaryotic association module of Wolbachia’s prophage WO. Here, we use transcriptomic and genomic approaches to address three important evolutionary facets of the cif genes. First, we assess whether or not cifA and cifB comprise a classic toxin–antitoxin operon in wMel and show that the two genes exhibit striking, transcriptional differences across host development. They can produce a bicistronic message despite a predicted hairpin termination element in their intergenic region. Second, cifA and cifB strongly coevolve across the diversity of phage WO. Third, we provide new domain and functional predictions across homologs within Wolbachia, and show that amino acid sequences vary substantially across the genus. Finally, we investigate conservation of cifA and cifB and find frequent degradation and loss of the genes in strains that no longer induce CI. Taken together, we demonstrate that cifA and cifB exhibit complex transcriptional regulation in wMel, provide functional annotations that broaden the potential mechanisms of CI induction, and report recurrent erosion of cifA and cifB in non-CI strains, thus expanding our understanding of the most widespread form of reproductive parasitism. PMID:29351633

  6. Evolutionary Conserved Function of Barley and Arabidopsis 3-KETOACYL-CoA SYNTHASES in Providing Wax Signals for Germination of Powdery Mildew Fungi1[C][W

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weidenbach, Denise; Jansen, Marcus; Franke, Rochus B.; Hensel, Goetz; Weissgerber, Wiebke; Ulferts, Sylvia; Jansen, Irina; Schreiber, Lukas; Korzun, Viktor; Pontzen, Rolf; Kumlehn, Jochen; Pillen, Klaus; Schaffrath, Ulrich

    2014-01-01

    For plant pathogenic fungi, such as powdery mildews, that survive only on a limited number of host plant species, it is a matter of vital importance that their spores sense that they landed on the right spot to initiate germination as quickly as possible. We investigated a barley (Hordeum vulgare) mutant with reduced epicuticular leaf waxes on which spores of adapted and nonadapted powdery mildew fungi showed reduced germination. The barley gene responsible for the mutant wax phenotype was cloned in a forward genetic screen and identified to encode a 3-KETOACYL-CoA SYNTHASE (HvKCS6), a protein participating in fatty acid elongation and required for synthesis of epicuticular waxes. Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis revealed that the mutant has significantly fewer aliphatic wax constituents with a chain length above C-24. Complementation of the mutant restored wild-type wax and overcame germination penalty, indicating that wax constituents less present on the mutant are a crucial clue for spore germination. Investigation of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) transgenic plants with sense silencing of Arabidopsis REQUIRED FOR CUTICULAR WAX PRODUCTION1, the HvKCS6 ortholog, revealed the same germination phenotype against adapted and nonadapted powdery mildew fungi. Our findings hint to an evolutionary conserved mechanism for sensing of plant surfaces among distantly related powdery mildews that is based on KCS6-derived wax components. Perception of such a signal must have been evolved before the monocot-dicot split took place approximately 150 million years ago. PMID:25201879

  7. RegulonDB v8.0: omics data sets, evolutionary conservation, regulatory phrases, cross-validated gold standards and more

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salgado, Heladia; Peralta-Gil, Martin; Gama-Castro, Socorro; Santos-Zavaleta, Alberto; Muñiz-Rascado, Luis; García-Sotelo, Jair S.; Weiss, Verena; Solano-Lira, Hilda; Martínez-Flores, Irma; Medina-Rivera, Alejandra; Salgado-Osorio, Gerardo; Alquicira-Hernández, Shirley; Alquicira-Hernández, Kevin; López-Fuentes, Alejandra; Porrón-Sotelo, Liliana; Huerta, Araceli M.; Bonavides-Martínez, César; Balderas-Martínez, Yalbi I.; Pannier, Lucia; Olvera, Maricela; Labastida, Aurora; Jiménez-Jacinto, Verónica; Vega-Alvarado, Leticia; del Moral-Chávez, Victor; Hernández-Alvarez, Alfredo; Morett, Enrique; Collado-Vides, Julio

    2013-01-01

    This article summarizes our progress with RegulonDB (http://regulondb.ccg.unam.mx/) during the past 2 years. We have kept up-to-date the knowledge from the published literature regarding transcriptional regulation in Escherichia coli K-12. We have maintained and expanded our curation efforts to improve the breadth and quality of the encoded experimental knowledge, and we have implemented criteria for the quality of our computational predictions. Regulatory phrases now provide high-level descriptions of regulatory regions. We expanded the assignment of quality to various sources of evidence, particularly for knowledge generated through high-throughput (HT) technology. Based on our analysis of most relevant methods, we defined rules for determining the quality of evidence when multiple independent sources support an entry. With this latest release of RegulonDB, we present a new highly reliable larger collection of transcription start sites, a result of our experimental HT genome-wide efforts. These improvements, together with several novel enhancements (the tracks display, uploading format and curational guidelines), address the challenges of incorporating HT-generated knowledge into RegulonDB. Information on the evolutionary conservation of regulatory elements is also available now. Altogether, RegulonDB version 8.0 is a much better home for integrating knowledge on gene regulation from the sources of information currently available. PMID:23203884

  8. A Comprehensive Catalog of Human KRAB-associated Zinc Finger Genes: Insights into the Evolutionary History of a Large Family of Transcriptional Repressors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Huntley, S; Baggott, D M; Hamilton, A T; Tran-Gyamfi, M; Yang, S; Kim, J; Gordon, L; Branscomb, E; Stubbs, L

    2005-09-30

    Krueppel-type zinc finger (ZNF) motifs are prevalent components of transcription factor proteins in all eukaryotic species. In mammals, most ZNF proteins comprise a single class of transcriptional repressors in which a chromatin interaction domain, called the Krueppel-associated box (KRAB) is attached to a tandem array of DNA-binding zinc-finger motifs. KRAB-ZNF loci are specific to tetrapod vertebrates, but have expanded dramatically in numbers through repeated rounds of segmental duplication to create a gene family with hundreds of members in mammals. To define the full repertoire of human KRAB-ZNF proteins, we searched the human genome for key motifs and used them to construct and manually curate gene models. The resulting KRAB-ZNF gene catalog includes 326 known genes, 243 of which were structurally corrected by manual annotation, and 97 novel KRAB-ZNF genes; this single family therefore comprises 20% of all predicted human transcription factor genes. Many of the genes are alternatively spliced, yielding a total of 743 distinct predicted proteins. Although many human KRAB-ZNF genes are conserved in mammals, at least 136 and potentially more than 200 genes of this type are primate-specific including many recent segmental duplicates. KRAB-ZNF genes are active in a wide variety of human tissues suggesting roles in many key biological processes, but most member genes remain completely uncharacterized. Because of their sheer numbers, wide-ranging tissue-specific expression patterns, and remarkable evolutionary divergence we predict that KRAB-ZNF transcription factors have played critical roles in crafting many aspects of human biology, including both deeply conserved and primate-specific traits.

  9. Dissecting the Gene Network of Dietary Restriction to Identify Evolutionarily Conserved Pathways and New Functional Genes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wuttke, Daniel; Connor, Richard; Vora, Chintan; Craig, Thomas; Li, Yang; Wood, Shona; Vasieva, Olga; Shmookler Reis, Robert; Tang, Fusheng; de Magalhães, João Pedro

    2012-01-01

    Dietary restriction (DR), limiting nutrient intake from diet without causing malnutrition, delays the aging process and extends lifespan in multiple organisms. The conserved life-extending effect of DR suggests the involvement of fundamental mechanisms, although these remain a subject of debate. To help decipher the life-extending mechanisms of DR, we first compiled a list of genes that if genetically altered disrupt or prevent the life-extending effects of DR. We called these DR–essential genes and identified more than 100 in model organisms such as yeast, worms, flies, and mice. In order for other researchers to benefit from this first curated list of genes essential for DR, we established an online database called GenDR (http://genomics.senescence.info/diet/). To dissect the interactions of DR–essential genes and discover the underlying lifespan-extending mechanisms, we then used a variety of network and systems biology approaches to analyze the gene network of DR. We show that DR–essential genes are more conserved at the molecular level and have more molecular interactions than expected by chance. Furthermore, we employed a guilt-by-association method to predict novel DR–essential genes. In budding yeast, we predicted nine genes related to vacuolar functions; we show experimentally that mutations deleting eight of those genes prevent the life-extending effects of DR. Three of these mutants (OPT2, FRE6, and RCR2) had extended lifespan under ad libitum, indicating that the lack of further longevity under DR is not caused by a general compromise of fitness. These results demonstrate how network analyses of DR using GenDR can be used to make phenotypically relevant predictions. Moreover, gene-regulatory circuits reveal that the DR–induced transcriptional signature in yeast involves nutrient-sensing, stress responses and meiotic transcription factors. Finally, comparing the influence of gene expression changes during DR on the interactomes of multiple

  10. Evolutionary changes of multiple visual pigment genes in the complete genome of Pacific bluefin tuna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakamura, Yoji; Mori, Kazuki; Saitoh, Kenji; Oshima, Kenshiro; Mekuchi, Miyuki; Sugaya, Takuma; Shigenobu, Yuya; Ojima, Nobuhiko; Muta, Shigeru; Fujiwara, Atushi; Yasuike, Motoshige; Oohara, Ichiro; Hirakawa, Hideki; Chowdhury, Vishwajit Sur; Kobayashi, Takanori; Nakajima, Kazuhiro; Sano, Motohiko; Wada, Tokio; Tashiro, Kosuke; Ikeo, Kazuho; Hattori, Masahira; Kuhara, Satoru; Gojobori, Takashi; Inouye, Kiyoshi

    2013-07-02

    Tunas are migratory fishes in offshore habitats and top predators with unique features. Despite their ecological importance and high market values, the open-ocean lifestyle of tuna, in which effective sensing systems such as color vision are required for capture of prey, has been poorly understood. To elucidate the genetic and evolutionary basis of optic adaptation of tuna, we determined the genome sequence of the Pacific bluefin tuna (Thunnus orientalis), using next-generation sequencing technology. A total of 26,433 protein-coding genes were predicted from 16,802 assembled scaffolds. From these, we identified five common fish visual pigment genes: red-sensitive (middle/long-wavelength sensitive; M/LWS), UV-sensitive (short-wavelength sensitive 1; SWS1), blue-sensitive (SWS2), rhodopsin (RH1), and green-sensitive (RH2) opsin genes. Sequence comparison revealed that tuna's RH1 gene has an amino acid substitution that causes a short-wave shift in the absorption spectrum (i.e., blue shift). Pacific bluefin tuna has at least five RH2 paralogs, the most among studied fishes; four of the proteins encoded may be tuned to blue light at the amino acid level. Moreover, phylogenetic analysis suggested that gene conversions have occurred in each of the SWS2 and RH2 loci in a short period. Thus, Pacific bluefin tuna has undergone evolutionary changes in three genes (RH1, RH2, and SWS2), which may have contributed to detecting blue-green contrast and measuring the distance to prey in the blue-pelagic ocean. These findings provide basic information on behavioral traits of predatory fish and, thereby, could help to improve the technology to culture such fish in captivity for resource management.

  11. Functional analysis of COP1 and SPA orthologs from Physcomitrella and rice during photomorphogenesis of transgenic Arabidopsis reveals distinct evolutionary conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ranjan, Aashish; Dickopf, Stephen; Ullrich, Kristian K; Rensing, Stefan A; Hoecker, Ute

    2014-07-01

    Plants have evolved light sensing mechanisms to optimally adapt their growth and development to the ambient light environment. The COP1/SPA complex is a key negative regulator of light signaling in the well-studied dicot Arabidopsis thaliana. COP1 and members of the four SPA proteins are part of an E3 ubiquitin ligase that acts in darkness to ubiquitinate several transcription factors involved in light responses, thereby targeting them for degradation by the proteasome. While COP1 is also found in humans, SPA proteins appear specific to plants. Here, we have functionally addressed evolutionary conservation of COP1 and SPA orthologs from the moss Physcomitrella, the monocot rice and the dicot Arabidopsis. To this end, we analyzed the activities of COP1- and SPA-like proteins from Physcomitrella patens and rice when expressed in Arabidopsis. Expression of rice COP1 and Physcomitrella COP1 protein sequences predominantly complemented all phenotypic aspects of the viable, hypomorphic cop1-4 mutant and the null, seedling-lethal cop1-5 mutant of Arabidopsis: rice COP1 fully rescued the constitutive-photomorphogenesis phenotype in darkness and the leaf expansion defect of cop1 mutants, while it partially restored normal photoperiodic flowering in cop1. Physcomitrella COP1 partially restored normal seedling growth and flowering time, while it fully restored normal leaf expansion in the cop1 mutants. In contrast, expression of a SPA ortholog from Physcomitrella (PpSPAb) in Arabidopsis spa mutants did not rescue any facet of the spa mutant phenotype, suggesting that the PpSPAb protein is not functionally conserved or that the Arabidopsis function evolved after the split of mosses and seed plants. The SPA1 ortholog from rice (OsSPA1) rescued the spa mutant phenotype in dark-grown seedlings, but did not complement any spa mutant phenotype in light-grown seedlings or in adult plants. Our results show that COP1 protein sequences from Physcomitrella, rice and Arabidopsis have

  12. Functional analysis of COP1 and SPA orthologs from Physcomitrella and rice during photomorphogenesis of transgenic Arabidopsis reveals distinct evolutionary conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    Background Plants have evolved light sensing mechanisms to optimally adapt their growth and development to the ambient light environment. The COP1/SPA complex is a key negative regulator of light signaling in the well-studied dicot Arabidopsis thaliana. COP1 and members of the four SPA proteins are part of an E3 ubiquitin ligase that acts in darkness to ubiquitinate several transcription factors involved in light responses, thereby targeting them for degradation by the proteasome. While COP1 is also found in humans, SPA proteins appear specific to plants. Here, we have functionally addressed evolutionary conservation of COP1 and SPA orthologs from the moss Physcomitrella, the monocot rice and the dicot Arabidopsis. Results To this end, we analyzed the activities of COP1- and SPA-like proteins from Physcomitrella patens and rice when expressed in Arabidopsis. Expression of rice COP1 and Physcomitrella COP1 protein sequences predominantly complemented all phenotypic aspects of the viable, hypomorphic cop1-4 mutant and the null, seedling-lethal cop1-5 mutant of Arabidopsis: rice COP1 fully rescued the constitutive-photomorphogenesis phenotype in darkness and the leaf expansion defect of cop1 mutants, while it partially restored normal photoperiodic flowering in cop1. Physcomitrella COP1 partially restored normal seedling growth and flowering time, while it fully restored normal leaf expansion in the cop1 mutants. In contrast, expression of a SPA ortholog from Physcomitrella (PpSPAb) in Arabidopsis spa mutants did not rescue any facet of the spa mutant phenotype, suggesting that the PpSPAb protein is not functionally conserved or that the Arabidopsis function evolved after the split of mosses and seed plants. The SPA1 ortholog from rice (OsSPA1) rescued the spa mutant phenotype in dark-grown seedlings, but did not complement any spa mutant phenotype in light-grown seedlings or in adult plants. Conclusion Our results show that COP1 protein sequences from Physcomitrella

  13. Cubic time algorithms of amalgamating gene trees and building evolutionary scenarios

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Background A long recognized problem is the inference of the supertree S that amalgamates a given set {Gj} of trees Gj, with leaves in each Gj being assigned homologous elements. We ground on an approach to find the tree S by minimizing the total cost of mappings αj of individual gene trees Gj into S. Traditionally, this cost is defined basically as a sum of duplications and gaps in each αj. The classical problem is to minimize the total cost, where S runs over the set of all trees that contain an exhaustive non-redundant set of species from all input Gj. Results We suggest a reformulation of the classical NP-hard problem of building a supertree in terms of the global minimization of the same cost functional but only over species trees S that consist of clades belonging to a fixed set P (e.g., an exhaustive set of clades in all Gj). We developed a deterministic solving algorithm with a low degree polynomial (typically cubic) time complexity with respect to the size of input data. We define an extensive set of elementary evolutionary events and suggest an original definition of mapping β of tree G into tree S. We introduce the cost functional c(G, S, f ) and define the mapping β as the global minimum of this functional with respect to the variable f, in which sense it is a generalization of classical mapping α. We suggest a reformulation of the classical NP-hard mapping (reconciliation) problem by introducing time slices into the species tree S and present a cubic time solving algorithm to compute the mapping β. We introduce two novel definitions of the evolutionary scenario based on mapping β or a random process of gene evolution along a species tree. Conclusions Developed algorithms are mathematically proved, which justifies the following statements. The supertree building algorithm finds exactly the global minimum of the total cost if only gene duplications and losses are allowed and the given sets of gene trees satisfies a certain condition. The mapping

  14. From Binding-Induced Dynamic Effects in SH3 Structures to Evolutionary Conserved Sectors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Zafra Ruano

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Src Homology 3 domains are ubiquitous small interaction modules known to act as docking sites and regulatory elements in a wide range of proteins. Prior experimental NMR work on the SH3 domain of Src showed that ligand binding induces long-range dynamic changes consistent with an induced fit mechanism. The identification of the residues that participate in this mechanism produces a chart that allows for the exploration of the regulatory role of such domains in the activity of the encompassing protein. Here we show that a computational approach focusing on the changes in side chain dynamics through ligand binding identifies equivalent long-range effects in the Src SH3 domain. Mutation of a subset of the predicted residues elicits long-range effects on the binding energetics, emphasizing the relevance of these positions in the definition of intramolecular cooperative networks of signal transduction in this domain. We find further support for this mechanism through the analysis of seven other publically available SH3 domain structures of which the sequences represent diverse SH3 classes. By comparing the eight predictions, we find that, in addition to a dynamic pathway that is relatively conserved throughout all SH3 domains, there are dynamic aspects specific to each domain and homologous subgroups. Our work shows for the first time from a structural perspective, which transduction mechanisms are common between a subset of closely related and distal SH3 domains, while at the same time highlighting the differences in signal transduction that make each family member unique. These results resolve the missing link between structural predictions of dynamic changes and the domain sectors recently identified for SH3 domains through sequence analysis.

  15. Molecular evolution of the insect Halloween family of cytochrome P450s: phylogeny, gene organization and functional conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rewitz, Kim F; O'Connor, Michael B; Gilbert, Lawrence I

    2007-08-01

    The insect molting hormone, 20-hydroxyecdysone (20E), is a major modulator of the developmental processes resulting in molting and metamorphosis. During evolution selective forces have preserved the Halloween genes encoding cytochrome P450 (P450) enzymes that mediate the biosynthesis of 20E. In the present study, we examine the phylogenetic relationships of these P450 genes in holometabolous insects belonging to the orders Hymenoptera, Coleoptera, Lepidoptera and Diptera. The analyzed insect genomes each contains single orthologs of Phantom (CYP306A1), Disembodied (CYP302A1), Shadow (CYP315A1) and Shade (CYP314A1), the terminal hydroxylases. In Drosophila melanogaster, the Halloween gene spook (Cyp307a1) is required for the biosynthesis of 20E, although a function has not yet been identified. Unlike the other Halloween genes, the ancestor of this gene evolved into three paralogs, all in the CYP307 family, through gene duplication. The genomic stability of these paralogs varies among species. Intron-exon structures indicate that D. melanogaster Cyp307a1 is a mRNA-derived paralog of spookier (Cyp307a2), which is the ancestral gene and the closest ortholog of the coleopteran, lepidopteran and mosquito CYP307A subfamily genes. Evolutionary links between the insect Halloween genes and vertebrate steroidogenic P450s suggest that they originated from common ancestors, perhaps destined for steroidogenesis, before the deuterostome-arthropod split. Conservation of putative substrate recognition sites of orthologous Halloween genes indicates selective constraint on these residues to prevent functional divergence. The results suggest that duplications of ancestral P450 genes that acquired novel functions may have been an important mechanism for evolving the ecdysteroidogenic pathway.

  16. Identification and Evolutionary Analysis of Potential Candidate Genes in a Human Eating Disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sabbagh, Ubadah; Mullegama, Saman; Wyckoff, Gerald J

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to find genes linked with eating disorders and associated with both metabolic and neural systems. Our operating hypothesis was that there are genetic factors underlying some eating disorders resting in both those pathways. Specifically, we are interested in disorders that may rest in both sleep and metabolic function, generally called Night Eating Syndrome (NES). A meta-analysis of the Gene Expression Omnibus targeting the mammalian nervous system, sleep, and obesity studies was performed, yielding numerous genes of interest. Through a text-based analysis of the results, a number of potential candidate genes were identified. VGF, in particular, appeared to be relevant both to obesity and, broadly, to brain or neural development. VGF is a highly connected protein that interacts with numerous targets via proteolytically digested peptides. We examined VGF from an evolutionary perspective to determine whether other available evidence supported a role for the gene in human disease. We conclude that some of the already identified variants in VGF from human polymorphism studies may contribute to eating disorders and obesity. Our data suggest that there is enough evidence to warrant eGWAS and GWAS analysis of these genes in NES patients in a case-control study.

  17. Re-analyses of “Algal” Genes Suggest a Complex Evolutionary History of Oomycetes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qia Wang

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The spread of photosynthesis is one of the most important but constantly debated topics in eukaryotic evolution. Various hypotheses have been proposed to explain the plastid distribution in extant eukaryotes. Notably, the chromalveolate hypothesis suggested that multiple eukaryotic lineages were derived from a photosynthetic ancestor that had a red algal endosymbiont. As such, genes of plastid/algal origin in aplastidic chromalveolates, such as oomycetes, were considered to be important supporting evidence. Although the chromalveolate hypothesis has been seriously challenged, some of its supporting evidence has not been carefully investigated. In this study, we re-evaluate the “algal” genes from oomycetes with a larger sampling and careful phylogenetic analyses. Our data provide no conclusive support for a common photosynthetic ancestry of stramenopiles, but show that the initial estimate of “algal” genes in oomycetes was drastically inflated due to limited genome data available then for certain eukaryotic lineages. These findings also suggest that the evolutionary histories of these “algal” genes might be attributed to complex scenarios such as differential gene loss, serial endosymbioses, or horizontal gene transfer.

  18. Identification and Evolutionary Analysis of Potential Candidate Genes in a Human Eating Disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ubadah Sabbagh

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to find genes linked with eating disorders and associated with both metabolic and neural systems. Our operating hypothesis was that there are genetic factors underlying some eating disorders resting in both those pathways. Specifically, we are interested in disorders that may rest in both sleep and metabolic function, generally called Night Eating Syndrome (NES. A meta-analysis of the Gene Expression Omnibus targeting the mammalian nervous system, sleep, and obesity studies was performed, yielding numerous genes of interest. Through a text-based analysis of the results, a number of potential candidate genes were identified. VGF, in particular, appeared to be relevant both to obesity and, broadly, to brain or neural development. VGF is a highly connected protein that interacts with numerous targets via proteolytically digested peptides. We examined VGF from an evolutionary perspective to determine whether other available evidence supported a role for the gene in human disease. We conclude that some of the already identified variants in VGF from human polymorphism studies may contribute to eating disorders and obesity. Our data suggest that there is enough evidence to warrant eGWAS and GWAS analysis of these genes in NES patients in a case-control study.

  19. Evolutionary Conservation in Biogenesis of β-Barrel Proteins Allows Mitochondria to Assemble a Functional Bacterial Trimeric Autotransporter Protein*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ulrich, Thomas; Oberhettinger, Philipp; Schütz, Monika; Holzer, Katharina; Ramms, Anne S.; Linke, Dirk; Autenrieth, Ingo B.; Rapaport, Doron

    2014-01-01

    Yersinia adhesin A (YadA) belongs to a class of bacterial adhesins that form trimeric structures. Their mature form contains a passenger domain and a C-terminal β-domain that anchors the protein in the outer membrane (OM). Little is known about how precursors of such proteins cross the periplasm and assemble into the OM. In the present study we took advantage of the evolutionary conservation in the biogenesis of β-barrel proteins between bacteria and mitochondria. We previously observed that upon expression in yeast cells, bacterial β-barrel proteins including the transmembrane domain of YadA assemble into the mitochondrial OM. In the current study we found that when expressed in yeast cells both the monomeric and trimeric forms of full-length YadA were detected in mitochondria but only the trimeric species was fully integrated into the OM. The oligomeric form was exposed on the surface of the organelle in its native conformation and maintained its capacity to adhere to host cells. The co-expression of YadA with a mitochondria-targeted form of the bacterial periplasmic chaperone Skp, but not with SurA or SecB, resulted in enhanced levels of both forms of YadA. Taken together, these results indicate that the proper assembly of trimeric autotransporter can occur also in a system lacking the lipoproteins of the BAM machinery and is specifically enhanced by the chaperone Skp. PMID:25190806

  20. Comprehensive characterization of evolutionary conserved breakpoints in four New World Monkey karyotypes compared to Chlorocebus aethiops and Homo sapiens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Xiaobo; Supiwong, Weerayuth; Weise, Anja; Mrasek, Kristin; Kosyakova, Nadezda; Tanomtong, Alongkoad; Pinthong, Krit; Trifonov, Vladimir A; Cioffi, Marcelo de Bello; Grothmann, Pierre; Liehr, Thomas; Oliveira, Edivaldo H C de

    2015-11-01

    Comparative cytogenetic analysis in New World Monkeys (NWMs) using human multicolor banding (MCB) probe sets were not previously done. Here we report on an MCB based FISH-banding study complemented with selected locus-specific and heterochromatin specific probes in four NWMs and one Old World Monkey (OWM) species, i.e. in Alouatta caraya (ACA), Callithrix jacchus (CJA), Cebus apella (CAP), Saimiri sciureus (SSC), and Chlorocebus aethiops (CAE), respectively. 107 individual evolutionary conserved breakpoints (ECBs) among those species were identified and compared with those of other species in previous reports. Especially for chromosomal regions being syntenic to human chromosomes 6, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 and 16 previously cryptic rearrangements could be observed. 50.4% (54/107) NWM-ECBs were colocalized with those of OWMs, 62.6% (62/99) NWM-ECBs were related with those of Hylobates lar (HLA) and 66.3% (71/107) NWM-ECBs corresponded with those known from other mammalians. Furthermore, human fragile sites were aligned with the ECBs found in the five studied species and interestingly 66.3% ECBs colocalized with those fragile sites (FS). Overall, this study presents detailed chromosomal maps of one OWM and four NWM species. This data will be helpful to further investigation on chromosome evolution in NWM and hominoids in general and is prerequisite for correct interpretation of future sequencing based genomic studies in those species.

  1. Comprehensive characterization of evolutionary conserved breakpoints in four New World Monkey karyotypes compared to Chlorocebus aethiops and Homo sapiens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaobo Fan

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Comparative cytogenetic analysis in New World Monkeys (NWMs using human multicolor banding (MCB probe sets were not previously done. Here we report on an MCB based FISH-banding study complemented with selected locus-specific and heterochromatin specific probes in four NWMs and one Old World Monkey (OWM species, i.e. in Alouatta caraya (ACA, Callithrix jacchus (CJA, Cebus apella (CAP, Saimiri sciureus (SSC, and Chlorocebus aethiops (CAE, respectively. 107 individual evolutionary conserved breakpoints (ECBs among those species were identified and compared with those of other species in previous reports. Especially for chromosomal regions being syntenic to human chromosomes 6, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 and 16 previously cryptic rearrangements could be observed. 50.4% (54/107 NWM-ECBs were colocalized with those of OWMs, 62.6% (62/99 NWM-ECBs were related with those of Hylobates lar (HLA and 66.3% (71/107 NWM-ECBs corresponded with those known from other mammalians. Furthermore, human fragile sites were aligned with the ECBs found in the five studied species and interestingly 66.3% ECBs colocalized with those fragile sites (FS. Overall, this study presents detailed chromosomal maps of one OWM and four NWM species. This data will be helpful to further investigation on chromosome evolution in NWM and hominoids in general and is prerequisite for correct interpretation of future sequencing based genomic studies in those species.

  2. Evolutionary Conservation and Emerging Functional Diversity of the Cytosolic Hsp70:J Protein Chaperone Network of Arabidopsis thaliana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verma, Amit K; Diwan, Danish; Raut, Sandeep; Dobriyal, Neha; Brown, Rebecca E; Gowda, Vinita; Hines, Justin K; Sahi, Chandan

    2017-06-07

    Heat shock proteins of 70 kDa (Hsp70s) partner with structurally diverse Hsp40s (J proteins), generating distinct chaperone networks in various cellular compartments that perform myriad housekeeping and stress-associated functions in all organisms. Plants, being sessile, need to constantly maintain their cellular proteostasis in response to external environmental cues. In these situations, the Hsp70:J protein machines may play an important role in fine-tuning cellular protein quality control. Although ubiquitous, the functional specificity and complexity of the plant Hsp70:J protein network has not been studied. Here, we analyzed the J protein network in the cytosol of Arabidopsis thaliana and, using yeast genetics, show that the functional specificities of most plant J proteins in fundamental chaperone functions are conserved across long evolutionary timescales. Detailed phylogenetic and functional analysis revealed that increased number, regulatory differences, and neofunctionalization in J proteins together contribute to the emerging functional diversity and complexity in the Hsp70:J protein network in higher plants. Based on the data presented, we propose that higher plants have orchestrated their "chaperome," especially their J protein complement, according to their specialized cellular and physiological stipulations. Copyright © 2017 Verma et al.

  3. Elucidating the evolutionary conserved DNA-binding specificities of WRKY transcription factors by molecular dynamics and in vitro binding assays

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brand, Luise H.; Fischer, Nina M.; Harter, Klaus; Kohlbacher, Oliver; Wanke, Dierk

    2013-01-01

    WRKY transcription factors constitute a large protein family in plants that is involved in the regulation of developmental processes and responses to biotic or abiotic stimuli. The question arises how stimulus-specific responses are mediated given that the highly conserved WRKY DNA-binding domain (DBD) exclusively recognizes the ‘TTGACY’ W-box consensus. We speculated that the W-box consensus might be more degenerate and yet undetected differences in the W-box consensus of WRKYs of different evolutionary descent exist. The phylogenetic analysis of WRKY DBDs suggests that they evolved from an ancestral group IIc-like WRKY early in the eukaryote lineage. A direct descent of group IIc WRKYs supports a monophyletic origin of all other group II and III WRKYs from group I by loss of an N-terminal DBD. Group I WRKYs are of paraphyletic descent and evolved multiple times independently. By homology modeling, molecular dynamics simulations and in vitro DNA–protein interaction-enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay with AtWRKY50 (IIc), AtWRKY33 (I) and AtWRKY11 (IId) DBDs, we revealed differences in DNA-binding specificities. Our data imply that other components are essentially required besides the W-box-specific binding to DNA to facilitate a stimulus-specific WRKY function. PMID:23975197

  4. Evolutionary history of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) genes in Lotus, Medicago, and Phaseolus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neupane, Achal; Nepal, Madhav P; Benson, Benjamin V; Macarthur, Kenton J; Piya, Sarbottam

    2013-11-01

    Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase (MAPK) genes encode proteins that mediate various signaling pathways associated with biotic and abiotic stress responses in eukaryotes. The MAPK genes form a 3-tier signal transduction cascade between cellular stimuli and physiological responses. Recent identification of soybean MAPKs and availability of genome sequences from other legume species allowed us to identify their MAPK genes. The main objectives of this study were to identify MAPKs in 3 legume species, Lotus japonicus, Medicago truncatula, and Phaseolus vulgaris, and to assess their phylogenetic relationships. We used approaches in comparative genomics for MAPK gene identification and named the newly identified genes following Arabidopsis MAPK nomenclature model. We identified 19, 18, and 15 MAPKs and 7, 4, and 9 MAPKKs in the genome of Lotus japonicus, Medicago truncatula, and Phaseolus vulgaris, respectively. Within clade placement of MAPKs and MAPKKs in the 3 legume species were consistent with those in soybean and Arabidopsis. Among 5 clades of MAPKs, 4 founder clades were consistent to MAPKs of other plant species and orthologs of MAPK genes in the fifth clade-"Clade E" were consistent with those in soybean. Our results also indicated that some gene duplication events might have occurred prior to eudicot-monocot divergence. Highly diversified MAPKs in soybean relative to those in 3 other legume species are attributable to the polyploidization events in soybean. The identification of the MAPK genes in the legume species is important for the legume crop improvement; and evolutionary relationships and functional divergence of these gene members provide insights into plant genome evolution.

  5. Comparative Developmental Transcriptomics Reveals Rewiring of a Highly Conserved Gene Regulatory Network during a Major Life History Switch in the Sea Urchin Genus Heliocidaris.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer W Israel

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The ecologically significant shift in developmental strategy from planktotrophic (feeding to lecithotrophic (nonfeeding development in the sea urchin genus Heliocidaris is one of the most comprehensively studied life history transitions in any animal. Although the evolution of lecithotrophy involved substantial changes to larval development and morphology, it is not known to what extent changes in gene expression underlie the developmental differences between species, nor do we understand how these changes evolved within the context of the well-defined gene regulatory network (GRN underlying sea urchin development. To address these questions, we used RNA-seq to measure expression dynamics across development in three species: the lecithotroph Heliocidaris erythrogramma, the closely related planktotroph H. tuberculata, and an outgroup planktotroph Lytechinus variegatus. Using well-established statistical methods, we developed a novel framework for identifying, quantifying, and polarizing evolutionary changes in gene expression profiles across the transcriptome and within the GRN. We found that major changes in gene expression profiles were more numerous during the evolution of lecithotrophy than during the persistence of planktotrophy, and that genes with derived expression profiles in the lecithotroph displayed specific characteristics as a group that are consistent with the dramatically altered developmental program in this species. Compared to the transcriptome, changes in gene expression profiles within the GRN were even more pronounced in the lecithotroph. We found evidence for conservation and likely divergence of particular GRN regulatory interactions in the lecithotroph, as well as significant changes in the expression of genes with known roles in larval skeletogenesis. We further use coexpression analysis to identify genes of unknown function that may contribute to both conserved and derived developmental traits between species

  6. Comparative Developmental Transcriptomics Reveals Rewiring of a Highly Conserved Gene Regulatory Network during a Major Life History Switch in the Sea Urchin Genus Heliocidaris.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Israel, Jennifer W; Martik, Megan L; Byrne, Maria; Raff, Elizabeth C; Raff, Rudolf A; McClay, David R; Wray, Gregory A

    2016-03-01

    The ecologically significant shift in developmental strategy from planktotrophic (feeding) to lecithotrophic (nonfeeding) development in the sea urchin genus Heliocidaris is one of the most comprehensively studied life history transitions in any animal. Although the evolution of lecithotrophy involved substantial changes to larval development and morphology, it is not known to what extent changes in gene expression underlie the developmental differences between species, nor do we understand how these changes evolved within the context of the well-defined gene regulatory network (GRN) underlying sea urchin development. To address these questions, we used RNA-seq to measure expression dynamics across development in three species: the lecithotroph Heliocidaris erythrogramma, the closely related planktotroph H. tuberculata, and an outgroup planktotroph Lytechinus variegatus. Using well-established statistical methods, we developed a novel framework for identifying, quantifying, and polarizing evolutionary changes in gene expression profiles across the transcriptome and within the GRN. We found that major changes in gene expression profiles were more numerous during the evolution of lecithotrophy than during the persistence of planktotrophy, and that genes with derived expression profiles in the lecithotroph displayed specific characteristics as a group that are consistent with the dramatically altered developmental program in this species. Compared to the transcriptome, changes in gene expression profiles within the GRN were even more pronounced in the lecithotroph. We found evidence for conservation and likely divergence of particular GRN regulatory interactions in the lecithotroph, as well as significant changes in the expression of genes with known roles in larval skeletogenesis. We further use coexpression analysis to identify genes of unknown function that may contribute to both conserved and derived developmental traits between species. Collectively, our results

  7. Evolutionary responses to a constructed niche: ancient Mesoamericans as a model of gene-culture coevolution.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tábita Hünemeier

    Full Text Available Culture and genetics rely on two distinct but not isolated transmission systems. Cultural processes may change the human selective environment and thereby affect which individuals survive and reproduce. Here, we evaluated whether the modes of subsistence in Native American populations and the frequencies of the ABCA1*Arg230Cys polymorphism were correlated. Further, we examined whether the evolutionary consequences of the agriculturally constructed niche in Mesoamerica could be considered as a gene-culture coevolution model. For this purpose, we genotyped 229 individuals affiliated with 19 Native American populations and added data for 41 other Native American groups (n = 1905 to the analysis. In combination with the SNP cluster of a neutral region, this dataset was then used to unravel the scenario involved in 230Cys evolutionary history. The estimated age of 230Cys is compatible with its origin occurring in the American continent. The correlation of its frequencies with the archeological data on Zea pollen in Mesoamerica/Central America, the neutral coalescent simulations, and the F(ST-based natural selection analysis suggest that maize domestication was the driving force in the increase in the frequencies of 230Cys in this region. These results may represent the first example of a gene-culture coevolution involving an autochthonous American allele.

  8. An evolutionary analysis of lateral gene transfer in thymidylate synthase enzymes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, Adi; Mayrose, Itay; Penn, Osnat; Shaul, Shaul; Gophna, Uri; Pupko, Tal

    2010-03-01

    Thymidylate synthases (Thy) are key enzymes in the synthesis of deoxythymidylate, 1 of the 4 building blocks of DNA. As such, they are essential for all DNA-based forms of life and therefore implicated in the hypothesized transition from RNA genomes to DNA genomes. Two evolutionally unrelated Thy enzymes, ThyA and ThyX, are known to catalyze the same biochemical reaction. Both enzymes are sporadically distributed within each of the 3 domains of life in a pattern that suggests multiple nonhomologous lateral gene transfer (LGT) events. We present a phylogenetic analysis of the evolution of the 2 enzymes, aimed at unraveling their entangled evolutionary history and tracing their origin back to early life. A novel probabilistic evolutionary model was developed, which allowed us to compute the posterior probabilities and the posterior expectation of the number of LGT events. Simulation studies were performed to validate the model's ability to accurately detect LGT events, which have occurred throughout a large phylogeny. Applying the model to the Thy data revealed widespread nonhomologous LGT between and within all 3 domains of life. By reconstructing the ThyA and ThyX gene trees, the most likely donor of each LGT event was inferred. The role of viruses in LGT of Thy is finally discussed.

  9. Evolutionary Responses to a Constructed Niche: Ancient Mesoamericans as a Model of Gene-Culture Coevolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hünemeier, Tábita; Amorim, Carlos Eduardo Guerra; Azevedo, Soledad; Contini, Veronica; Acuña-Alonzo, Víctor; Rothhammer, Francisco; Dugoujon, Jean-Michel; Mazières, Stephane; Barrantes, Ramiro; Villarreal-Molina, María Teresa; Paixão-Côrtes, Vanessa Rodrigues; Salzano, Francisco M.; Canizales-Quinteros, Samuel; Ruiz-Linares, Andres; Bortolini, Maria Cátira

    2012-01-01

    Culture and genetics rely on two distinct but not isolated transmission systems. Cultural processes may change the human selective environment and thereby affect which individuals survive and reproduce. Here, we evaluated whether the modes of subsistence in Native American populations and the frequencies of the ABCA1*Arg230Cys polymorphism were correlated. Further, we examined whether the evolutionary consequences of the agriculturally constructed niche in Mesoamerica could be considered as a gene-culture coevolution model. For this purpose, we genotyped 229 individuals affiliated with 19 Native American populations and added data for 41 other Native American groups (n = 1905) to the analysis. In combination with the SNP cluster of a neutral region, this dataset was then used to unravel the scenario involved in 230Cys evolutionary history. The estimated age of 230Cys is compatible with its origin occurring in the American continent. The correlation of its frequencies with the archeological data on Zea pollen in Mesoamerica/Central America, the neutral coalescent simulations, and the FST-based natural selection analysis suggest that maize domestication was the driving force in the increase in the frequencies of 230Cys in this region. These results may represent the first example of a gene-culture coevolution involving an autochthonous American allele. PMID:22768049

  10. Evolutionary responses to a constructed niche: ancient Mesoamericans as a model of gene-culture coevolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hünemeier, Tábita; Amorim, Carlos Eduardo Guerra; Azevedo, Soledad; Contini, Veronica; Acuña-Alonzo, Víctor; Rothhammer, Francisco; Dugoujon, Jean-Michel; Mazières, Stephane; Barrantes, Ramiro; Villarreal-Molina, María Teresa; Paixão-Côrtes, Vanessa Rodrigues; Salzano, Francisco M; Canizales-Quinteros, Samuel; Ruiz-Linares, Andres; Bortolini, Maria Cátira

    2012-01-01

    Culture and genetics rely on two distinct but not isolated transmission systems. Cultural processes may change the human selective environment and thereby affect which individuals survive and reproduce. Here, we evaluated whether the modes of subsistence in Native American populations and the frequencies of the ABCA1*Arg230Cys polymorphism were correlated. Further, we examined whether the evolutionary consequences of the agriculturally constructed niche in Mesoamerica could be considered as a gene-culture coevolution model. For this purpose, we genotyped 229 individuals affiliated with 19 Native American populations and added data for 41 other Native American groups (n = 1905) to the analysis. In combination with the SNP cluster of a neutral region, this dataset was then used to unravel the scenario involved in 230Cys evolutionary history. The estimated age of 230Cys is compatible with its origin occurring in the American continent. The correlation of its frequencies with the archeological data on Zea pollen in Mesoamerica/Central America, the neutral coalescent simulations, and the F(ST)-based natural selection analysis suggest that maize domestication was the driving force in the increase in the frequencies of 230Cys in this region. These results may represent the first example of a gene-culture coevolution involving an autochthonous American allele.

  11. Diversity and evolutionary patterns of immune genes in free-ranging Namibian leopards (Panthera pardus pardus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castro-Prieto, Aines; Wachter, Bettina; Melzheimer, Joerg; Thalwitzer, Susanne; Sommer, Simone

    2011-01-01

    The genes of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) are a key component of the mammalian immune system and have become important molecular markers for fitness-related genetic variation in wildlife populations. Currently, no information about the MHC sequence variation and constitution in African leopards exists. In this study, we isolated and characterized genetic variation at the adaptively most important region of MHC class I and MHC class II-DRB genes in 25 free-ranging African leopards from Namibia and investigated the mechanisms that generate and maintain MHC polymorphism in the species. Using single-stranded conformation polymorphism analysis and direct sequencing, we detected 6 MHC class I and 6 MHC class II-DRB sequences, which likely correspond to at least 3 MHC class I and 3 MHC class II-DRB loci. Amino acid sequence variation in both MHC classes was higher or similar in comparison to other reported felids. We found signatures of positive selection shaping the diversity of MHC class I and MHC class II-DRB loci during the evolutionary history of the species. A comparison of MHC class I and MHC class II-DRB sequences of the leopard to those of other felids revealed a trans-species mode of evolution. In addition, the evolutionary relationships of MHC class II-DRB sequences between African and Asian leopard subspecies are discussed.

  12. Highly conserved gene order and numerous novel repetitive elements in genomic regions linked to wing pattern variation in Heliconius butterflies

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    Halder Georg

    2008-07-01

    over very long evolutionary time scales. Conclusion Here we have demonstrated the tractability of progressing from a genetic linkage map to genomic sequence data in Heliconius butterflies. We have also shown that fine-scale gene order is highly conserved between distantly related Heliconius species, and also between Heliconius and B. mori. Together, these findings suggest that genome structure in macrolepidoptera might be very conserved, and show that mapping and positional cloning efforts in different lepidopteran species can be reciprocally informative.

  13. Evolutionary relationships and diversification of barhl genes within retinal cell lineages

    OpenAIRE

    Schuhmacher Laura-Nadine; Albadri Shahad; Ramialison Mirana; Poggi Lucia

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Background Basic helix-loop-helix and homeodomain transcription factors have been shown to specify all different neuronal cell subtypes composing the vertebrate retina. The appearance of gene paralogs of such retina-specific transcription factors in lower vertebrates, with differently evolved function and/or conserved non-coding elements, might provide an important source for the generation of neuronal diversity within the vertebrate retinal architecture. In line with this hypothesis...

  14. Evolutionary Analysis of Structural Protein Gene VP1 of Foot-and-Mouth Disease Virus Serotype Asia 1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Qingxun; Liu, Xinsheng; Fang, Yuzhen; Pan, Li; Lv, Jianliang; Zhang, Zhongwang; Zhou, Peng; Ding, Yaozhong; Chen, Haotai; Shao, Junjun; Zhao, Furong; Lin, Tong; Chang, Huiyun; Zhang, Jie; Wang, Yonglu; Zhang, Yongguang

    2015-01-01

    Foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) serotype Asia 1 was mostly endemic in Asia and then was responsible for economically important viral disease of cloven-hoofed animals, but the study on its selection and evolutionary process is comparatively rare. In this study, we characterized 377 isolates from Asia collected up until 2012, including four vaccine strains. Maximum likelihood analysis suggested that the strains circulating in Asia were classified into 8 different groups (groups I–VIII) or were unclassified (viruses collected before 2000). On the basis of divergence time analyses, we infer that the TMRCA of Asia 1 virus existed approximately 86.29 years ago. The result suggested that the virus had a high mutation rate (5.745 × 10−3 substitutions/site/year) in comparison to the other serotypes of FMDV VP1 gene. Furthermore, the structural protein VP1 was under lower selection pressure and the positive selection occurred at many sites, and four codons (positions 141, 146, 151, and 169) were located in known critical antigenic residues. The remaining sites were not located in known functional regions and were moderately conserved, and the reason for supporting all sites under positive selection remains to be elucidated because the power of these analyses was largely unknown. PMID:25793223

  15. Conservation and variation in Hox genes: how insect models pioneered the evo-devo field.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heffer, Alison; Pick, Leslie

    2013-01-01

    Evolutionary developmental biology, or evo-devo, broadly investigates how body plan diversity and morphological novelties have arisen and persisted in nature. The discovery of Hox genes in Drosophila, and their subsequent identification in most other metazoans, led biologists to try to understand how embryonic genes crucial for proper development have changed to promote the vast morphological variation seen in nature. Insects are ideal model systems for studying this diversity and the mechanisms underlying it because phylogenetic relationships are well established, powerful genetic tools have been developed, and there are many examples of evolutionary specializations that have arisen in nature in different insect lineages, such as the jumping leg of orthopterans and the helmet structures of treehoppers. Here, we briefly introduce the field of evo-devo and Hox genes, discuss functional tools available to study early developmental genes in insects, and provide examples in which changes in Hox genes have contributed to changes in body plan or morphology.

  16. Mouse histocompatibility-related genes are not conserved in other mammals.

    OpenAIRE

    Rogers, J.H.

    1985-01-01

    In addition to the genes for classical H-2 antigens, the H-2 complex of the mouse contains numerous homologous genes belonging to several distinct families. It is not known whether they have any functions. To address this question, I have investigated whether these genes are separately conserved in evolution. Subcloned 5' gene segments, encoding the variable domains, were used as hybridisation probes on genomic DNA blots of various mammals. Only the largest gene family, which includes the cla...

  17. Gene bionetworks involved in the epigenetic transgenerational inheritance of altered mate preference: environmental epigenetics and evolutionary biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skinner, Michael K; Savenkova, Marina I; Zhang, Bin; Gore, Andrea C; Crews, David

    2014-05-16

    Mate preference behavior is an essential first step in sexual selection and is a critical determinant in evolutionary biology. Previously an environmental compound (the fungicide vinclozolin) was found to promote the epigenetic transgenerational inheritance of an altered sperm epigenome and modified mate preference characteristics for three generations after exposure of a gestating female. The current study investigated gene networks involved in various regions of the brain that correlated with the altered mate preference behavior in the male and female. Statistically significant correlations of gene clusters and modules were identified to associate with specific mate preference behaviors. This novel systems biology approach identified gene networks (bionetworks) involved in sex-specific mate preference behavior. Observations demonstrate the ability of environmental factors to promote the epigenetic transgenerational inheritance of this altered evolutionary biology determinant. Combined observations elucidate the potential molecular control of mate preference behavior and suggests environmental epigenetics can have a role in evolutionary biology.

  18. Characterization of the duplicate L-SIGN and DC-SIGN genes in miiuy croaker and evolutionary analysis of L-SIGN in fishes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shu, Chang; Wang, Shanchen; Xu, Tianjun

    2015-05-01

    Dendritic cell-specific ICAM-3-grabbing non-integrin (DC-SIGN/CD209) and liver/lymph node-specific ICAM-grabbing non-integrin (L-SIGN/CD299) which are homologues of DC-SIGN are important members in C-type lectin receptors family as key molecules to recognize and eliminate pathogens in the innate immune system. DC-SIGN and L-SIGN have become hot topics in recent studies which both served as cell adhesion and phagocytic pathogen recognition receptors in mammals. However, there have been almost no studies of DC-SIGN and L-SIGN structure and characters in fish, only DC-SIGN in the zebrafish had been studied. In our study, we identified and characterized the full-length miiuy croaker (Miichthys miiuy) DC-SIGN (mmDC-SIGN) and L-SIGN (mmL-SIGN) genes. The sequence analysis results showed that mmDC-SIGN and mmL-SIGN have the same domains with other vertebrates except primates, and share some conserved motifs in CRD among all the vertebrates which play a crucial role in interacting with Ca(2+) and for recognizing mannose-containing motifs. Gene synteny of DC-SIGN and L-SIGN were analyzed for the first time and gene synteny of L-SIGN was conserved among the five fishes. Interestingly, one gene next to L-SIGN from gene synteny had high similarity with L-SIGN gene that was described as L-SIGN-like in fish species. While only one L-SIGN gene existed in other vertebrates, two L-SIGN in fish may be in consequence of the fish-specific genome duplication to adapt the specific environment. The evolutionary analysis showed that the ancestral lineages of L-SIGN gene in fishes experienced purifying selection and the current lineages of L-SIGN gene in fishes underwent positive selection, indicating that the ancestral lineages and current lineages of L-SIGN gene in fishes underwent different evolutionary patterns. Both mmDC-SIGN and mmL-SIGN were expressed in all tested tissues and ubiquitously up-regulated in infected liver, spleen and kidney at different sampling time points

  19. Plastic and Evolutionary Gene Expression Responses Are Correlated in European Grayling (Thymallus thymallus) Subpopulations Adapted to Different Thermal Environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mäkinen, Hannu; Papakostas, Spiros; Vøllestad, Leif Asbjørn; Leder, Erica H; Primmer, Craig R

    2016-01-01

    Understanding how populations adapt to changing environmental conditions is a long-standing theme in evolutionary biology. Gene expression changes have been recognized as an important driver of local adaptation, but relatively little is known regarding the direction of change and in particular, about the interplay between plastic and evolutionary gene expression. We have previously shown that the gene expression profiles of European grayling (Thymallus thymallus) populations inhabiting different thermal environments include both plastic and evolutionary components. However, whether the plastic and evolutionary responses were in the same direction was not investigated in detail, nor was the identity of the specific genes involved. In this study, we show that the plastic changes in protein expression in response to different temperatures are highly correlated with the evolutionary response in grayling subpopulations adapted to different thermal environments. This finding provides preliminary evidence that the plastic response most likely facilitates adaptation during the early phases of colonization of thermal environments. The proteins that showed significant changes in expression level between warm and cold temperature treatments were mostly related to muscle development, which is consistent with earlier findings demonstrating muscle mass differentiation between cold and warm grayling populations. © The American Genetic Association. 2015. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  20. The Kinetic and Thermodynamic Aftermath of Horizontal Gene Transfer Governs Evolutionary Recovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doore, Sarah M; Fane, Bentley A

    2015-10-01

    Shared host cells can serve as melting pots for viral genomes, giving many phylogenies a web-like appearance due to horizontal gene transfer. However, not all virus families exhibit web-like phylogenies. Microviruses form three distinct clades, represented by φX174, G4, and α3. Here, we investigate protein-based barriers to horizontal gene transfer between clades. We transferred gene G, which encodes a structural protein, between φX174 and G4, and monitored the evolutionary recovery of the resulting chimeras. In both cases, particle assembly was the major barrier after gene transfer. The G4φXG chimera displayed a temperature-sensitive assembly defect that could easily be corrected through single mutations that promote productive assembly. Gene transfer in the other direction was more problematic. The initial φXG4G chimera required an exogenous supply of both the φX174 major spike G and DNA pilot H proteins. Elevated DNA pilot protein levels may be required to compensate for off-pathway reactions that may have become thermodynamically and/or kinetically favored when the foreign spike protein was present. After three targeted genetic selections, the foreign spike protein was productively integrated into the φX174 background. The first adaption involved a global decrease in gene expression. This was followed by modifications affecting key protein-protein interactions that govern assembly. Finally, gene expression was re-elevated. Although the first selection suppresses nonproductive reactions, subsequent selections promote productive assembly and ultimately viability. However, viable chimeric strains exhibited reduced fitness compared with wild-type. This chimera's path to recovery may partially explain how unusual recombinant viruses could persist long enough to naturally emerge. © 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: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  1. DNA transposon-based gene vehicles - scenes from an evolutionary drive.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skipper, Kristian Alsbjerg; Andersen, Peter Refsing; Sharma, Nynne; Mikkelsen, Jacob Giehm

    2013-12-09

    DNA transposons are primitive genetic elements which have colonized living organisms from plants to bacteria and mammals. Through evolution such parasitic elements have shaped their host genomes by replicating and relocating between chromosomal loci in processes catalyzed by the transposase proteins encoded by the elements themselves. DNA transposable elements are constantly adapting to life in the genome, and self-suppressive regulation as well as defensive host mechanisms may assist in buffering 'cut-and-paste' DNA mobilization until accumulating mutations will eventually restrict events of transposition. With the reconstructed Sleeping Beauty DNA transposon as a powerful engine, a growing list of transposable elements with activity in human cells have moved into biomedical experimentation and preclinical therapy as versatile vehicles for delivery and genomic insertion of transgenes. In this review, we aim to link the mechanisms that drive transposon evolution with the realities and potential challenges we are facing when adapting DNA transposons for gene transfer. We argue that DNA transposon-derived vectors may carry inherent, and potentially limiting, traits of their mother elements. By understanding in detail the evolutionary journey of transposons, from host colonization to element multiplication and inactivation, we may better exploit the potential of distinct transposable elements. Hence, parallel efforts to investigate and develop distinct, but potent, transposon-based vector systems will benefit the broad applications of gene transfer. Insight and clever optimization have shaped new DNA transposon vectors, which recently debuted in the first DNA transposon-based clinical trial. Learning from an evolutionary drive may help us create gene vehicles that are safer, more efficient, and less prone for suppression and inactivation.

  2. DNA transposon-based gene vehicles - scenes from an evolutionary drive

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    DNA transposons are primitive genetic elements which have colonized living organisms from plants to bacteria and mammals. Through evolution such parasitic elements have shaped their host genomes by replicating and relocating between chromosomal loci in processes catalyzed by the transposase proteins encoded by the elements themselves. DNA transposable elements are constantly adapting to life in the genome, and self-suppressive regulation as well as defensive host mechanisms may assist in buffering ‘cut-and-paste’ DNA mobilization until accumulating mutations will eventually restrict events of transposition. With the reconstructed Sleeping Beauty DNA transposon as a powerful engine, a growing list of transposable elements with activity in human cells have moved into biomedical experimentation and preclinical therapy as versatile vehicles for delivery and genomic insertion of transgenes. In this review, we aim to link the mechanisms that drive transposon evolution with the realities and potential challenges we are facing when adapting DNA transposons for gene transfer. We argue that DNA transposon-derived vectors may carry inherent, and potentially limiting, traits of their mother elements. By understanding in detail the evolutionary journey of transposons, from host colonization to element multiplication and inactivation, we may better exploit the potential of distinct transposable elements. Hence, parallel efforts to investigate and develop distinct, but potent, transposon-based vector systems will benefit the broad applications of gene transfer. Insight and clever optimization have shaped new DNA transposon vectors, which recently debuted in the first DNA transposon-based clinical trial. Learning from an evolutionary drive may help us create gene vehicles that are safer, more efficient, and less prone for suppression and inactivation. PMID:24320156

  3. Evolutionary conservation in biogenesis of β-barrel proteins allows mitochondria to assemble a functional bacterial trimeric autotransporter protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ulrich, Thomas; Oberhettinger, Philipp; Schütz, Monika; Holzer, Katharina; Ramms, Anne S; Linke, Dirk; Autenrieth, Ingo B; Rapaport, Doron

    2014-10-24

    Yersinia adhesin A (YadA) belongs to a class of bacterial adhesins that form trimeric structures. Their mature form contains a passenger domain and a C-terminal β-domain that anchors the protein in the outer membrane (OM). Little is known about how precursors of such proteins cross the periplasm and assemble into the OM. In the present study we took advantage of the evolutionary conservation in the biogenesis of β-barrel proteins between bacteria and mitochondria. We previously observed that upon expression in yeast cells, bacterial β-barrel proteins including the transmembrane domain of YadA assemble into the mitochondrial OM. In the current study we found that when expressed in yeast cells both the monomeric and trimeric forms of full-length YadA were detected in mitochondria but only the trimeric species was fully integrated into the OM. The oligomeric form was exposed on the surface of the organelle in its native conformation and maintained its capacity to adhere to host cells. The co-expression of YadA with a mitochondria-targeted form of the bacterial periplasmic chaperone Skp, but not with SurA or SecB, resulted in enhanced levels of both forms of YadA. Taken together, these results indicate that the proper assembly of trimeric autotransporter can occur also in a system lacking the lipoproteins of the BAM machinery and is specifically enhanced by the chaperone Skp. © 2014 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  4. 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.

  5. Comparative and Evolutionary Analysis of the Interleukin 17 Gene Family in Invertebrates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Xian-De; Zhang, Hua; He, Mao-Xian

    2015-01-01

    Interleukin 17 (IL-17) is an important pro-inflammatory cytokine and plays critical roles in the immune response to pathogens and in the pathogenesis of inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. Despite its important functions, the origin and evolution of IL-17 in animal phyla have not been characterized. As determined in this study, the distribution of the IL-17 family among 10 invertebrate species and 7 vertebrate species suggests that the IL-17 gene may have originated from Nematoda but is absent from Saccoglossus kowalevskii (Hemichordata) and Insecta. Moreover, the gene number, protein length and domain number of IL-17 differ widely. A comparison of IL-17-containing domains and conserved motifs indicated somewhat low amino acid sequence similarity but high conservation at the motif level, although some motifs were lost in certain species. The third disulfide bond for the cystine knot fold is formed by two cysteine residues in invertebrates, but these have been replaced by two serine residues in Chordata and vertebrates. One third of invertebrate IL-17 proteins were found to have no predicted signal peptide. Furthermore, an analysis of phylogenetic trees and exon–intron structures indicated that the IL-17 family lacks conservation and displays high divergence. These results suggest that invertebrate IL-17 proteins have undergone complex differentiation and that their members may have developed novel functions during evolution. PMID:26218896

  6. Comparative and Evolutionary Analysis of the Interleukin 17 Gene Family in Invertebrates.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xian-De Huang

    Full Text Available Interleukin 17 (IL-17 is an important pro-inflammatory cytokine and plays critical roles in the immune response to pathogens and in the pathogenesis of inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. Despite its important functions, the origin and evolution of IL-17 in animal phyla have not been characterized. As determined in this study, the distribution of the IL-17 family among 10 invertebrate species and 7 vertebrate species suggests that the IL-17 gene may have originated from Nematoda but is absent from Saccoglossus kowalevskii (Hemichordata and Insecta. Moreover, the gene number, protein length and domain number of IL-17 differ widely. A comparison of IL-17-containing domains and conserved motifs indicated somewhat low amino acid sequence similarity but high conservation at the motif level, although some motifs were lost in certain species. The third disulfide bond for the cystine knot fold is formed by two cysteine residues in invertebrates, but these have been replaced by two serine residues in Chordata and vertebrates. One third of invertebrate IL-17 proteins were found to have no predicted signal peptide. Furthermore, an analysis of phylogenetic trees and exon-intron structures indicated that the IL-17 family lacks conservation and displays high divergence. These results suggest that invertebrate IL-17 proteins have undergone complex differentiation and that their members may have developed novel functions during evolution.

  7. Fast turnover of genome transcription across evolutionary time exposes entire non-coding DNA to de novo gene emergence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neme, Rafik; Tautz, Diethard

    2016-02-02

    Deep sequencing analyses have shown that a large fraction of genomes is transcribed, but the significance of this transcription is much debated. Here, we characterize the phylogenetic turnover of poly-adenylated transcripts in a comprehensive sampling of taxa of the mouse (genus Mus), spanning a phylogenetic distance of 10 Myr. Using deep RNA sequencing we find that at a given sequencing depth transcriptome coverage becomes saturated within a taxon, but keeps extending when compared between taxa, even at this very shallow phylogenetic level. Our data show a high turnover of transcriptional states between taxa and that no major transcript-free islands exist across evolutionary time. This suggests that the entire genome can be transcribed into poly-adenylated RNA when viewed at an evolutionary time scale. We conclude that any part of the non-coding genome can potentially become subject to evolutionary functionalization via de novo gene evolution within relatively short evolutionary time spans.

  8. Gene duplication and an accelerated evolutionary rate in 11S globulin genes are associated with higher protein synthesis in dicots as compared to monocots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Chun

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Seed storage proteins are a major source of dietary protein, and the content of such proteins determines both the quantity and quality of crop yield. Significantly, examination of the protein content in the seeds of crop plants shows a distinct difference between monocots and dicots. Thus, it is expected that there are different evolutionary patterns in the genes underlying protein synthesis in the seeds of these two groups of plants. Results Gene duplication, evolutionary rate and positive selection of a major gene family of seed storage proteins (the 11S globulin genes, were compared in dicots and monocots. The results, obtained from five species in each group, show more gene duplications, a higher evolutionary rate and positive selections of this gene family in dicots, which are rich in 11S globulins, but not in the monocots. Conclusion Our findings provide evidence to support the suggestion that gene duplication and an accelerated evolutionary rate may be associated with higher protein synthesis in dicots as compared to monocots.

  9. Gene function beyond the single trait: natural variation, gene effects, and evolutionary ecology in Arabidopsis thaliana

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tonsor, S.J.; Alonso-Blanco, C.; Koornneef, M.

    2005-01-01

    The purpose of plant functional genomics is to describe the patterns of gene expression and internal plant function underlying the ecological functions that sustain plant growth and reproduction. Plants function as integrated systems in which metabolic and developmental pathways draw on common

  10. A Functional Genomic Screen for Evolutionarily Conserved Genes Required for Lifespan and Immunity in Germline-Deficient C. elegans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinha, Amit; Rae, Robbie

    2014-01-01

    The reproductive system regulates lifespan in insects, nematodes and vertebrates. In Caenorhabditis elegans removal of germline increases lifespan by 60% which is dependent upon insulin signaling, nuclear hormone signaling, autophagy and fat metabolism and their microRNA-regulators. Germline-deficient C. elegans are also more resistant to various bacterial pathogens but the underlying molecular mechanisms are largely unknown. Firstly, we demonstrate that previously identified genes that regulate the extended lifespan of germline-deficient C. elegans (daf-2, daf-16, daf-12, tcer-1, mir-7.1 and nhr-80) are also essential for resistance to the pathogenic bacterium Xenorhabdus nematophila. We then use a novel unbiased approach combining laser cell ablation, whole genome microarrays, RNAi screening and exposure to X. nematophila to generate a comprehensive genome-wide catalog of genes potentially required for increased lifespan and innate immunity in germline-deficient C. elegans. We find 3,440 genes to be upregulated in C. elegans germline-deficient animals in a gonad dependent manner, which are significantly enriched for genes involved in insulin signaling, fatty acid desaturation, translation elongation and proteasome complex function. Using RNAi against a subset of 150 candidate genes selected from the microarray results, we show that the upregulated genes such as transcription factor DAF-16/FOXO, the PTEN homolog lipid phosphatase DAF-18 and several components of the proteasome complex (rpn-6.1, rpn-7, rpn-9, rpn-10, rpt-6, pbs-3 and pbs-6) are essential for both lifespan and immunity of germline deficient animals. We also identify a novel role for genes including par-5 and T12G3.6 in both lifespan-extension and increased survival on X. nematophila. From an evolutionary perspective, most of the genes differentially expressed in germline deficient C. elegans also show a conserved expression pattern in germline deficient Pristionchus pacificus, a nematode species

  11. Phylogenetic analysis of pectin-related gene families in Physcomitrella patens and nine other plant species yields evolutionary insights into cell walls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCarthy, Thomas W; Der, Joshua P; Honaas, Loren A; dePamphilis, Claude W; Anderson, Charles T

    2014-03-26

    Pectins are acidic sugar-containing polysaccharides that are universally conserved components of the primary cell walls of plants and modulate both tip and diffuse cell growth. However, many of their specific functions and the evolution of the genes responsible for producing and modifying them are incompletely understood. The moss Physcomitrella patens is emerging as a powerful model system for the study of plant cell walls. To identify deeply conserved pectin-related genes in Physcomitrella, we generated phylogenetic trees for 16 pectin-related gene families using sequences from ten plant genomes and analyzed the evolutionary relationships within these families. Contrary to our initial hypothesis that a single ancestral gene was present for each pectin-related gene family in the common ancestor of land plants, five of the 16 gene families, including homogalacturonan galacturonosyltransferases, polygalacturonases, pectin methylesterases, homogalacturonan methyltransferases, and pectate lyase-like proteins, show evidence of multiple members in the early land plant that gave rise to the mosses and vascular plants. Seven of the gene families, the UDP-rhamnose synthases, UDP-glucuronic acid epimerases, homogalacturonan galacturonosyltransferase-like proteins, β-1,4-galactan β-1,4-galactosyltransferases, rhamnogalacturonan II xylosyltransferases, and pectin acetylesterases appear to have had a single member in the common ancestor of land plants. We detected no Physcomitrella members in the xylogalacturonan xylosyltransferase, rhamnogalacturonan I arabinosyltransferase, pectin methylesterase inhibitor, or polygalacturonase inhibitor protein families. Several gene families related to the production and modification of pectins in plants appear to have multiple members that are conserved as far back as the common ancestor of mosses and vascular plants. The presence of multiple members of these families even before the divergence of other important cell wall-related genes

  12. Effects of using coding potential, sequence conservation and mRNA structure conservation for predicting pyrroly-sine containing genes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Have, Christian Theil; Zambach, Sine; Christiansen, Henning

    2013-01-01

    Background Pyrrolysine (the 22nd amino acid) is in certain organisms and under certain circumstances encoded by the amber stop codon, UAG. The circumstances driving pyrrolysine translation are not well understood. The involvement of a predicted mRNA structure in the region downstream UAG has been...... these clusters according to several features that may influence pyrrolysine translation. The ranking effects of different features are assessed and we propose a weighted combination of these features which best explains the currently known pyrrolysine incorporating genes. We devote special attention...... for prediction of pyrrolysine incorporating genes in genomes of bacteria and archaea leading to insights about the factors driving pyrrolysine translation and identification of new gene candidates. The method predicts known conserved genes with high recall and predicts several other promising candidates...

  13. Aux/IAA gene family is conserved in the gymnosperm, loblolly pine (Pinus taeda).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldfarb, Barry; Lanz-Garcia, Carmen; Lian, Zhigang; Whetten, Ross

    2003-12-01

    We isolated five members of the Aux/IAA gene family in loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.). Degenerate primers complementary to conserved regions of angiosperm Aux/IAA genes were used to amplify fragments that were, in turn, used as probes to screen a cDNA library constructed from auxin-treated hypocotyls. The five unique clones, named PTIAA1-5, contain the four highly conserved domains that are characteristic of the Aux/IAA proteins. All clones contain the bipartite nuclear localization signal (NLS) between Domains I and II that is predicted in most angiosperm Aux/IAA genes, but only one, PTIAA2, contains the conserved NLS in Domain IV. The five invariant residues in Domain II that have been found to constitute part of a protein destabilization element in Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) Heynh. are conserved in all the PTIAAs. A postulated phosphorylation site located between Domains I and II and proximal to the conserved bipartite NLS was conserved in 20 out of 36 genes in this analysis, including the pine genes. Transcripts of all five PTIAAs accumulated specifically in the hypocotyls in response to exogenous auxin treatment and were induced by all auxins tested. Transcript abundance above basal levels in response to 1-naphthaleneacetic acid treatment was first detected after 10 min (PTIAA3) to 3 h (PTIAA2) in the different genes and remained above basal levels throughout 7 days. Induction of PTIAA2 was inhibited by the protein synthesis inhibitor cycloheximide, indicating that PTIAA2 is a secondary response gene. Phylogenetic analysis showed that all five pine genes clustered within a single class (Class I) of the dendrogram. Clone PTIAA2 has a sequence that is relatively distinct from the other four and is the most closely related to the angiosperm genes of Class I. Class I contains both primary and secondary auxin response genes, suggesting that it is the original lineage and that other gene classes have evolved subsequent to the angiosperm/gymnosperm divergence.

  14. Evolutionary history of PEPC genes in green plants: Implications for the evolution of CAM in orchids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deng, Hua; Zhang, Liang-Sheng; Zhang, Guo-Qiang; Zheng, Bao-Qiang; Liu, Zhong-Jian; Wang, Yan

    2016-01-01

    The phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase (PEPC) gene is the key enzyme in CAM and C4 photosynthesis. A detailed phylogenetic analysis of the PEPC family was performed using sequences from 60 available published plant genomes, the Phalaenopsis equestris genome and RNA-Seq of 15 additional orchid species. The PEPC family consists of three distinct subfamilies, PPC-1, PPC-2, and PPC-3, all of which share a recent common ancestor in chlorophyte algae. The eudicot PPC-1 lineage separated into two clades due to whole genome duplication (WGD). Similarly, the monocot PPC-1 lineage also divided into PPC-1M1 and PPC-1M2 through an ancient duplication event. The monocot CAM- or C4-related PEPC originated from the clade PPC-1M1. WGD may not be the major driver for the performance of CAM function by PEPC, although it increased the number of copies of the PEPC gene. CAM may have evolved early in monocots, as the CAM-related PEPC of orchids originated from the monocot ancient duplication, and the earliest CAM-related PEPC may have evolved immediately after the diversification of monocots, with CAM developing prior to C4. Our results represent the most complete evolutionary history of PEPC genes in green plants to date and particularly elucidate the origin of PEPC in orchids. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Evolutionary analysis of vision genes identifies potential drivers of visual differences between giraffe and okapi

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agaba, Morris; Cavener, Douglas R.

    2017-01-01

    Background The capacity of visually oriented species to perceive and respond to visual signal is integral to their evolutionary success. Giraffes are closely related to okapi, but the two species have broad range of phenotypic differences including their visual capacities. Vision studies rank giraffe’s visual acuity higher than all other artiodactyls despite sharing similar vision ecological determinants with many of them. The extent to which the giraffe’s unique visual capacity and its difference with okapi is reflected by changes in their vision genes is not understood. Methods The recent availability of giraffe and okapi genomes provided opportunity to identify giraffe and okapi vision genes. Multiple strategies were employed to identify thirty-six candidate mammalian vision genes in giraffe and okapi genomes. Quantification of selection pressure was performed by a combination of branch-site tests of positive selection and clade models of selection divergence through comparing giraffe and okapi vision genes and orthologous sequences from other mammals. Results Signatures of selection were identified in key genes that could potentially underlie giraffe and okapi visual adaptations. Importantly, some genes that contribute to optical transparency of the eye and those that are critical in light signaling pathway were found to show signatures of adaptive evolution or selection divergence. Comparison between giraffe and other ruminants identifies significant selection divergence in CRYAA and OPN1LW. Significant selection divergence was identified in SAG while positive selection was detected in LUM when okapi is compared with ruminants and other mammals. Sequence analysis of OPN1LW showed that at least one of the sites known to affect spectral sensitivity of the red pigment is uniquely divergent between giraffe and other ruminants. Discussion By taking a systemic approach to gene function in vision, the results provide the first molecular clues associated with

  16. Evolutionary analysis of vision genes identifies potential drivers of visual differences between giraffe and okapi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edson Ishengoma

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Background The capacity of visually oriented species to perceive and respond to visual signal is integral to their evolutionary success. Giraffes are closely related to okapi, but the two species have broad range of phenotypic differences including their visual capacities. Vision studies rank giraffe’s visual acuity higher than all other artiodactyls despite sharing similar vision ecological determinants with many of them. The extent to which the giraffe’s unique visual capacity and its difference with okapi is reflected by changes in their vision genes is not understood. Methods The recent availability of giraffe and okapi genomes provided opportunity to identify giraffe and okapi vision genes. Multiple strategies were employed to identify thirty-six candidate mammalian vision genes in giraffe and okapi genomes. Quantification of selection pressure was performed by a combination of branch-site tests of positive selection and clade models of selection divergence through comparing giraffe and okapi vision genes and orthologous sequences from other mammals. Results Signatures of selection were identified in key genes that could potentially underlie giraffe and okapi visual adaptations. Importantly, some genes that contribute to optical transparency of the eye and those that are critical in light signaling pathway were found to show signatures of adaptive evolution or selection divergence. Comparison between giraffe and other ruminants identifies significant selection divergence in CRYAA and OPN1LW. Significant selection divergence was identified in SAG while positive selection was detected in LUM when okapi is compared with ruminants and other mammals. Sequence analysis of OPN1LW showed that at least one of the sites known to affect spectral sensitivity of the red pigment is uniquely divergent between giraffe and other ruminants. Discussion By taking a systemic approach to gene function in vision, the results provide the first molecular clues

  17. Yeast Interspecies Comparative Proteomics Reveals Divergence in Expression Profiles and Provides Insights into Proteome Resource Allocation and Evolutionary Roles of Gene Duplication*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kito, Keiji; Ito, Haruka; Nohara, Takehiro; Ohnishi, Mihoko; Ishibashi, Yuko; Takeda, Daisuke

    2016-01-01

    Omics analysis is a versatile approach for understanding the conservation and diversity of molecular systems across multiple taxa. In this study, we compared the proteome expression profiles of four yeast species (Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Saccharomyces mikatae, Kluyveromyces waltii, and Kluyveromyces lactis) grown on glucose- or glycerol-containing media. Conserved expression changes across all species were observed only for a small proportion of all proteins differentially expressed between the two growth conditions. Two Kluyveromyces species, both of which exhibited a high growth rate on glycerol, a nonfermentative carbon source, showed distinct species-specific expression profiles. In K. waltii grown on glycerol, proteins involved in the glyoxylate cycle and gluconeogenesis were expressed in high abundance. In K. lactis grown on glycerol, the expression of glycolytic and ethanol metabolic enzymes was unexpectedly low, whereas proteins involved in cytoplasmic translation, including ribosomal proteins and elongation factors, were highly expressed. These marked differences in the types of predominantly expressed proteins suggest that K. lactis optimizes the balance of proteome resource allocation between metabolism and protein synthesis giving priority to cellular growth. In S. cerevisiae, about 450 duplicate gene pairs were retained after whole-genome duplication. Intriguingly, we found that in the case of duplicates with conserved sequences, the total abundance of proteins encoded by a duplicate pair in S. cerevisiae was similar to that of protein encoded by nonduplicated ortholog in Kluyveromyces yeast. Given the frequency of haploinsufficiency, this observation suggests that conserved duplicate genes, even though minor cases of retained duplicates, do not exhibit a dosage effect in yeast, except for ribosomal proteins. Thus, comparative proteomic analyses across multiple species may reveal not only species-specific characteristics of metabolic processes under

  18. Oxytocin Pathway Genes: Evolutionary Ancient System Impacting on Human Affiliation, Sociality, and Psychopathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feldman, Ruth; Monakhov, Mikhail; Pratt, Maayan; Ebstein, Richard P

    2016-02-01

    Oxytocin (OT), a nonapeptide signaling molecule originating from an ancestral peptide, appears in different variants across all vertebrate and several invertebrate species. Throughout animal evolution, neuropeptidergic signaling has been adapted by organisms for regulating response to rapidly changing environments. The family of OT-like molecules affects both peripheral tissues implicated in reproduction, homeostasis, and energy balance, as well as neuromodulation of social behavior, stress regulation, and associative learning in species ranging from nematodes to humans. After describing the OT-signaling pathway, we review research on the three genes most extensively studied in humans: the OT receptor (OXTR), the structural gene for OT (OXT/neurophysin-I), and CD38. Consistent with the notion that sociality should be studied from the perspective of social life at the species level, we address human social functions in relation to OT-pathway genes, including parenting, empathy, and using social relationships to manage stress. We then describe associations between OT-pathway genes with psychopathologies involving social dysfunctions such as autism, depression, or schizophrenia. Human research particularly underscored the involvement of two OXTR single nucleotide polymorphisms (rs53576, rs2254298) with fewer studies focusing on other OXTR (rs7632287, rs1042778, rs2268494, rs2268490), OXT (rs2740210, rs4813627, rs4813625), and CD38 (rs3796863, rs6449197) single nucleotide polymorphisms. Overall, studies provide evidence for the involvement of OT-pathway genes in human social functions but also suggest that factors such as gender, culture, and early environment often confound attempts to replicate first findings. We conclude by discussing epigenetics, conceptual implications within an evolutionary perspective, and future directions, especially the need to refine phenotypes, carefully characterize early environments, and integrate observations of social behavior across

  19. Camcore: Thirty-five years of Mesoamerican pine gene conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    J.L. Lopez; W.S. Dvorak; G.R. Hodge

    2017-01-01

    Camcore is an international tree breeding and conservation program with headquarters at North Carolina State University. Camcore was founded in 1980 as a cooperative, non-profit organization to identify and save the dwindling natural populations of pines in the highland regions of Guatemala in Central America. Funded by the private sector, the program has played an...

  20. Giant viruses, giant chimeras: The multiple evolutionary histories of Mimivirus genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brochier-Armanet Céline

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Although capable to evolve, viruses are generally considered non-living entities because they are acellular and devoid of metabolism. However, the recent publication of the genome sequence of the Mimivirus, a giant virus that parasitises amoebas, strengthened the idea that viruses should be included in the tree of life. In fact, the first phylogenetic analyses of a few Mimivirus genes that are also present in cellular lineages suggested that it could define an independent branch in the tree of life in addition to the three domains, Bacteria, Archaea and Eucarya. Results We tested this hypothesis by carrying out detailed phylogenetic analyses for all the conserved Mimivirus genes that have homologues in cellular organisms. We found no evidence supporting Mimivirus as a new branch in the tree of life. On the contrary, our phylogenetic trees strongly suggest that Mimivirus acquired most of these genes by horizontal gene transfer (HGT either from its amoebal hosts or from bacteria that parasitise the same hosts. The detection of HGT events involving different eukaryotic donors suggests that the spectrum of hosts of Mimivirus may be larger than currently known. Conclusion The large number of genes acquired by Mimivirus from eukaryotic and bacterial sources suggests that HGT has been an important process in the evolution of its genome and the adaptation to parasitism.

  1. Evolution. Systematic humanization of yeast genes reveals conserved functions and genetic modularity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kachroo, Aashiq H; Laurent, Jon M; Yellman, Christopher M; Meyer, Austin G; Wilke, Claus O; Marcotte, Edward M

    2015-05-22

    To determine whether genes retain ancestral functions over a billion years of evolution and to identify principles of deep evolutionary divergence, we replaced 414 essential yeast genes with their human orthologs, assaying for complementation of lethal growth defects upon loss of the yeast genes. Nearly half (47%) of the yeast genes could be successfully humanized. Sequence similarity and expression only partly predicted replaceability. Instead, replaceability depended strongly on gene modules: Genes in the same process tended to be similarly replaceable (e.g., sterol biosynthesis) or not (e.g., DNA replication initiation). Simulations confirmed that selection for specific function can maintain replaceability despite extensive sequence divergence. Critical ancestral functions of many essential genes are thus retained in a pathway-specific manner, resilient to drift in sequences, splicing, and protein interfaces. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  2. Conservation in Mammals of Genes Associated with Aggression-Related Behavioral Phenotypes in Honey Bees.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hui Liu

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The emerging field of sociogenomics explores the relations between social behavior and genome structure and function. An important question is the extent to which associations between social behavior and gene expression are conserved among the Metazoa. Prior experimental work in an invertebrate model of social behavior, the honey bee, revealed distinct brain gene expression patterns in African and European honey bees, and within European honey bees with different behavioral phenotypes. The present work is a computational study of these previous findings in which we analyze, by orthology determination, the extent to which genes that are socially regulated in honey bees are conserved across the Metazoa. We found that the differentially expressed gene sets associated with alarm pheromone response, the difference between old and young bees, and the colony influence on soldier bees, are enriched in widely conserved genes, indicating that these differences have genomic bases shared with many other metazoans. By contrast, the sets of differentially expressed genes associated with the differences between African and European forager and guard bees are depleted in widely conserved genes, indicating that the genomic basis for this social behavior is relatively specific to honey bees. For the alarm pheromone response gene set, we found a particularly high degree of conservation with mammals, even though the alarm pheromone itself is bee-specific. Gene Ontology identification of human orthologs to the strongly conserved honey bee genes associated with the alarm pheromone response shows overrepresentation of protein metabolism, regulation of protein complex formation, and protein folding, perhaps associated with remodeling of critical neural circuits in response to alarm pheromone. We hypothesize that such remodeling may be an adaptation of social animals to process and respond appropriately to the complex patterns of conspecific communication essential for

  3. The evolutionary trajectory of the mating-type (mat genes in Neurospora relates to reproductive behavior of taxa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johannesson Hanna

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Comparative sequencing studies among a wide range of taxonomic groups, including fungi, have led to the discovery that reproductive genes evolve more rapidly than other genes. However, for fungal reproductive genes the question has remained whether the rapid evolution is a result of stochastic or deterministic processes. The mating-type (mat genes constitute the master regulators of sexual reproduction in filamentous ascomycetes and here we present a study of the molecular evolution of the four mat-genes (mat a-1, mat A-1, mat A-2 and mat A-3 of 20 Neurospora taxa. Results We estimated nonsynonymous and synonymous substitution rates of genes to infer their evolutionary rate, and confirmed that the mat-genes evolve rapidly. Furthermore, the evolutionary trajectories are related to the reproductive modes of the taxa; likelihood methods revealed that positive selection acting on specific codons drives the diversity in heterothallic taxa, while among homothallic taxa the rapid evolution is due to a lack of selective constraint. The latter finding is supported by presence of stop codons and frame shift mutations disrupting the open reading frames of mat a-1, mat A-2 and mat A-3 in homothallic taxa. Lower selective constraints of mat-genes was found among homothallic than heterothallic taxa, and comparisons with non-reproductive genes argue that this disparity is not a nonspecific, genome-wide phenomenon. Conclusion Our data show that the mat-genes evolve rapidly in Neurospora. The rapid divergence is due to either adaptive evolution or lack of selective constraints, depending on the reproductive mode of the taxa. This is the first instance of positive selection acting on reproductive genes in the fungal kingdom, and illustrates how the evolutionary trajectory of reproductive genes can change after a switch in reproductive behaviour of an organism.

  4. Arabidopsis CPR5 is a senescence-regulatory gene with pleiotropic functions as predicted by the evolutionary theory of senescence

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jing, Hai-Chun; Anderson, Lisa; Sturre, Marcel J. G.; Hille, Jacques; Dijkwel, Paul P.

    2007-01-01

    Arabidopsis CPR5 is a senescence-regulatory gene with pleiotropic functions as predicted by the evolutionary theory of senescence Hai-Chun Jing1,2, Lisa Anderson3, Marcel J.G. Sturre1, Jacques Hille1 and Paul P. Dijkwel1,* 1Molecular Biology of Plants, Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and

  5. Linking dopamine neurotransmission and neurogenesis: the evolutionary history of the NTAD (NCAM1-TTC12-ANKK1-DRD2 gene cluster

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nina Roth Mota

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Genetic studies have long suggested the important role of the DRD2 gene in psychiatric disorders and behavior. Further research has shown a conjoined effect of genes in the Chr11q22-23 region, which includes the NCAM1, TTC12, ANKK1 and DRD2 genes, or NTAD cluster. Despite a growing need to unravel the role of this cluster, few studies have taken into account interspecies and evolutionary approaches. This study shows that behaviorally relevant SNPs from the NTAD cluster, such as rs1800497 (Taq1A and rs6277, are ancient polymorphisms that date back to the common ancestor between modern humans and Neanderthals/Denisovans. Conserved synteny and neighborhood indicate the NTAD cluster seems to have been established at least 400 million years ago, when the first Sarcopterygians emerged. The NTAD genes are apparently co-regulated and this could be attributed to adaptive functional properties, including those that emerged when the central nervous system became more complex. Finally, our findings indicate that NTAD genes, which are related to neurogenesis and dopaminergic neurotransmission, should be approached as a unit in behavioral and psychiatric genetic studies.

  6. Molecular and evolutionary analyses of a variable series of genes in Borrelia burgdorferi that are related to ospE and ospF, constitute a gene family, and share a common upstream homology box.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marconi, R T; Sung, S Y; Hughes, C A; Carlyon, J A

    1996-10-01

    In this study we report on the molecular characterization of a series of genes that constitute a gene family related to ospE and ospF. Some members of this family appear to represent recombined or variant forms of ospE and ospF. Variant ospE and ospF genes were found in several Borrelia burgdorferi isolates, demonstrating that their occurrence is not a phenomenon relevant to only a single isolate. Hybridization analyses revealed that the upstream sequence originally identified 5' of the full-length ospEF operon exists in multiple copies ranging in number from two to six depending on the isolate. This repeated sequence, which we refer to as the upstream homology box (UHB), carries a putative promoter element. In some isolates, UHB elements were found to flank copies of ospE and ospF that exist independently of each other. We refer to this group of UHB-flanked genes collectively as the UHB gene family. The evolutionary relationships among UHB gene family members were assessed through DNA sequence analysis and gene tree construction. These analyses suggest that some UHB-flanked genes might actually represent divergent forms of other previously described genes. Analysis of the restriction fragment length polymorphism patterns of the UHB-flanked genes among B. burgdorferi isolates demonstrated that these patterns are highly variable among isolates, suggesting that these genes are not phylogenetically conserved. The variable restriction fragment length polymorphism patterns could indicate recombinational activity in these sequences. The presence of numerous copies of the UHB elements and the high degree of homology among UHB-flanked genes could provide the necessary elements to allow for homologous recombination, leading to the generation of recombination variants of UHB gene family members.

  7. Comparative evolutionary genomics of the HADH2 gene encoding Aβ-binding alcohol dehydrogenase/17β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 10 (ABAD/HSD10

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernandes Pedro A

    2006-08-01

    2 genes maintained a reasonable conserved organization across a large evolutionary distance. The conserved noncoding regions identified among mammals and between pufferfishes, the evidence of an alternative splicing variant conserved between human and dog, and the detection of positive selection across eutherian mammals, may be of importance for further research on ABAD/HSD10 function and its implication in the Alzheimer's disease.

  8. Comparative Analysis of the Mitochondrial Genomes of Callitettixini Spittlebugs (Hemiptera: Cercopidae) Confirms the Overall High Evolutionary Speed of the AT-Rich Region but Reveals the Presence of Short Conservative Elements at the Tribal Level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Jie; Bu, Cuiping; Wipfler, Benjamin; Liang, Aiping

    2014-01-01

    The present study compares the mitochondrial genomes of five species of the spittlebug tribe Callitettixini (Hemiptera: Cercopoidea: Cercopidae) from eastern Asia. All genomes of the five species sequenced are circular double-stranded DNA molecules and range from 15,222 to 15,637 bp in length. They contain 22 tRNA genes, 13 protein coding genes (PCGs) and 2 rRNA genes and share the putative ancestral gene arrangement of insects. The PCGs show an extreme bias of nucleotide and amino acid composition. Significant differences of the substitution rates among the different genes as well as the different codon position of each PCG are revealed by the comparative evolutionary analyses. The substitution speeds of the first and second codon position of different PCGs are negatively correlated with their GC content. Among the five species, the AT-rich region features great differences in length and pattern and generally shows a 2–5 times higher substitution rate than the fastest PCG in the mitochondrial genome, atp8. Despite the significant variability in length, short conservative segments were identified in the AT-rich region within Callitettixini, although absent from the other groups of the spittlebug superfamily Cercopoidea. PMID:25285442

  9. USING ECO-EVOLUTIONARY INDIVIDUAL-BASED MODELS TO INVESTIGATE SPATIALLY-DEPENDENT PROCESSES IN CONSERVATION GENETICS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eco-evolutionary population simulation models are powerful new forecasting tools for exploring management strategies for climate change and other dynamic disturbance regimes. Additionally, eco-evo individual-based models (IBMs) are useful for investigating theoretical feedbacks ...

  10. Association of tissue lineage and gene expression: conservatively and differentially expressed genes define common and special functions of tissues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Yao; Xu, Tao; Yu, Yongtao; Hao, Pei; Li, Xuan

    2010-12-14

    Embryogenesis is the process by which the embryo is formed, develops, and establishes developmental hierarchies of tissues. The recent advance in microarray technology made it possible to investigate the tissue specific patterns of gene expression and their relationship with tissue lineages. This study is focused on how tissue specific functions, tissue lineage, and cell differentiation are correlated, which is essential to understand embryonic development and organism complexity. We performed individual gene and gene set based analysis on multiple tissue expression data, in association with the classic topology of mammalian fate maps of embryogenesis. For each sub-group of tissues on the fate map, conservatively, differentially and correlatively expressed genes or gene sets were identified. Tissue distance was found to correlate with gene expression divergence. Tissues of the ectoderm or mesoderm origins from the same segments on the fate map shared more similar expression pattern than those from different origins. Conservatively expressed genes or gene sets define common functions in a tissue group and are related to tissue specific diseases, which is supported by results from Gene Ontology and KEGG pathway analysis. Gene expression divergence is larger in certain human tissues than in the mouse homologous tissues. The results from tissue lineage and gene expression analysis indicate that common function features of neighbor tissue groups were defined by the conservatively expressed genes and were related to tissue specific diseases, and differentially expressed genes contribute to the functional divergence of tissues. The difference of gene expression divergence in human and mouse homologous tissues reflected the organism complexity, i.e. distinct neural development levels and different body sizes.

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2004-01-01

    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

  12. Evolutionary patterning of hemagglutinin gene sequence of 2009 H1N1 pandemic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banerjee, Rachana; Roy, Ayan; Ahmad, Fayaz; Das, Santasabuj; Basak, Surajit

    2012-01-01

    The 2009 H1N1 swine flu is the first pandemic in decades. Infectivity of the influenza virus for human host depends largely on its ability to evade antibodies specific for viral protein called hemagglutinin (HA) that mediates attachment to the host. In the present study we analysed large number of HA gene sequences available in Flu Database maintained at NCBI. Our sequence based analysis clearly demonstrates that the amino acid usage pattern may dramatically change during the course of evolution, and there exists a clear link between a particular pattern of amino acid usage of HA genes and its potential to become infectious. Structural studies revealed how binding efficiency between the HA and sialic acid may alter the pandemic potential of infection. Our work highlights the evolutionary significance and biochemical basis of the selective advantage of certain amino acids of HA in 2009 and provides a link between the characteristics changes in HA protein and their potential to pronounce a global menace to public health.

  13. Landscape genetic structure and evolutionary genetics of insecticide resistance gene mutations in Anopheles sinensis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Xuelian; Zhong, Daibin; Lo, Eugenia; Fang, Qiang; Bonizzoni, Mariangela; Wang, Xiaoming; Lee, Ming-Chieh; Zhou, Guofa; Zhu, Guoding; Qin, Qian; Chen, Xiaoguang; Cui, Liwang; Yan, Guiyun

    2016-04-23

    Anopheles sinensis is one of the most abundant vectors of malaria and other diseases in Asia. Vector control through the use of insecticides is the front line control method of vector-borne diseases. Pyrethroids are the most commonly used insecticides due to their low toxicity to vertebrates and low repellency. However, the extensive use of insecticides has imposed strong selection pressure on mosquito populations for resistance. High levels of resistance to pyrethroid insecticides and various mutations and haplotypes in the para sodium channel gene that confers knockdown resistance (kdr) have been detected in An. sinensis. Despite the importance of kdr mutations in pyrethroid resistance, the evolutionary origin of the kdr mutations is unknown. This study aims to examine the evolutionary genetics of kdr mutations in relation to spatial population genetic structure of An. sinensis. Adults or larvae of Anopheles sinensis were collected from various geographic locations in China. DNA was extracted from individual mosquitoes. PCR amplification and DNA sequencing of the para-type sodium channel gene were conducted to analyse kdr allele frequency distribution, kdr codon upstream and downstream intron polymorphism, population genetic diversity and kdr codon evolution. The mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase COI and COII genes were amplified and sequenced to examine population variations, genetic differentiation, spatial population structure, population expansion and gene flow patterns. Three non-synonymous mutations (L1014F, L1014C, and L1014S) were detected at the kdr codon L1014 of para-type sodium channel gene. A patchy distribution of kdr mutation allele frequencies from southern to central China was found. Near fixation of kdr mutation was detected in populations from central China, but no kdr mutations were found in populations from southwestern China. More than eight independent mutation events were detected in the three kdr alleles, and at least one of them evolved

  14. Evolutionary History of Chemosensory-Related Gene Families across the Arthropoda.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eyun, Seong-Il; Soh, Ho Young; Posavi, Marijan; Munro, James B; Hughes, Daniel S T; Murali, Shwetha C; Qu, Jiaxin; Dugan, Shannon; Lee, Sandra L; Chao, Hsu; Dinh, Huyen; Han, Yi; Doddapaneni, HarshaVardhan; Worley, Kim C; Muzny, Donna M; Park, Eun-Ok; Silva, Joana C; Gibbs, Richard A; Richards, Stephen; Lee, Carol Eunmi

    2017-08-01

    Chemosensory-related gene (CRG) families have been studied extensively in insects, but their evolutionary history across the Arthropoda had remained relatively unexplored. Here, we address current hypotheses and prior conclusions on CRG family evolution using a more comprehensive data set. In particular, odorant receptors were hypothesized to have proliferated during terrestrial colonization by insects (hexapods), but their association with other pancrustacean clades and with independent terrestrial colonizations in other arthropod subphyla have been unclear. We also examine hypotheses on which arthropod CRG family is most ancient. Thus, we reconstructed phylogenies of CRGs, including those from new arthropod genomes and transcriptomes, and mapped CRG gains and losses across arthropod lineages. Our analysis was strengthened by including crustaceans, especially copepods, which reside outside the hexapod/branchiopod clade within the subphylum Pancrustacea. We generated the first high-resolution genome sequence of the copepod Eurytemora affinis and annotated its CRGs. We found odorant receptors and odorant binding proteins present only in hexapods (insects) and absent from all other arthropod lineages, indicating that they are not universal adaptations to land. Gustatory receptors likely represent the oldest chemosensory receptors among CRGs, dating back to the Placozoa. We also clarified and confirmed the evolutionary history of antennal ionotropic receptors across the Arthropoda. All antennal ionotropic receptors in E. affinis were expressed more highly in males than in females, suggestive of an association with male mate-recognition behavior. This study is the most comprehensive comparative analysis to date of CRG family evolution across the largest and most speciose metazoan phylum Arthropoda. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  15. Conservation of Arabidopsis thaliana circadian clock genes in Chrysanthemum lavandulifolium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fu, Jianxin; Yang, Liwen; Dai, Silan

    2014-07-01

    In Arabidopsis, circadian clock genes play important roles in photoperiod pathway by regulating the daytime expression of CONSTANS (CO), but related reports for chrysanthemum are notably limited. In this study, we isolated eleven circadian clock genes, which lie in the three interconnected negative and positive feedback loops in a wild diploid chrysanthemum, Chrysanthemum lavandulifolium. With the exception of ClELF3, ClPRR1 and ClPRR73, most of the circadian clock genes are expressed more highly in leaves than in other tested tissues. The diurnal rhythms of these circadian clock genes are similar to those of their homologs in Arabidopsis. ClELF3 and ClZTL are constitutively expressed at all time points in both assessed photoperiods. The expression succession from morning to night of the PSEUDO RESPONSE REGULATOR (PRR) gene family occurs in the order ClPRR73/ClPRR37, ClPRR5, and then ClPRR1. ClLHY is expressed during the dawn period, and ClGIs is expressed during the dusk period. The peak expression levels of ClFKF1 and ClGIs are synchronous in the inductive photoperiod. However, in the non-inductive night break (NB) condition or non-24 h photoperiod, the peak expression level of ClFKF1 is significantly changed, indicating that ClFKF1 itself or the synchronous expression of ClFKF1 and ClGIs might be essential to initiate the flowering of C. lavandulifolium. This study provides the first extensive evaluation of circadian clock genes, and it presents a useful foundation for dissecting the functions of circadian clock genes in C. lavandulifolium. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS.

  16. The methionine-rich low-molecular-weight chloroplast heat-shock protein: evolutionary conservation and accumulation in relation to thermotolerance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Downs, C; Heckathorn, S; Bryan, J; Coleman, J

    1998-02-01

    The evolutionary conservation of the low-molecular-weight chloroplast-localized heat-shock protein (LMW chlpHsp) in vascular plants was examined using immunological methods. An antibody (Abmet) specific to the LMW chlpHsp was produced using a synthetic 28-residue peptide containing the most conserved elements of its unique "methionine-rich domain" as an antigen. This antibody detected a heat-inducible low-molecular-weight chloroplast protein in plants of six divergent Anthophyta species, including C3, C4, CAM, monocot, and dicot species. Abmet also detected a LMW chlpHsp in species from the Divisions Psilotophyta, Equisetophyta, Polypodiophyta, and Ginkgophyta. A preliminary examination of the relationship between accumulation of the LMW chlpHsp and habitat was also conducted. Seven Anthophyta species originating from both warm- and cool-temperature habitats were grown at 28C and then heat stressed at 40C. A positive qualitative relationship between the accumulation of the LMW chlpHsp and organismal thermotolerance in these species was observed; similar results were obtained separately with four nonAnthophyta species. The strong evolutionary conservation of this LMW Hsp and its localization to the chloroplast, and the correlation between production of this protein and plant thermotolerance, suggest that the LMW chlpHsp plays an important role in adaptation to heat stress.

  17. Identification of a conserved set of upregulated genes in mouse skeletal muscle hypertrophy and regrowth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaillou, Thomas; Jackson, Janna R.; England, Jonathan H.; Kirby, Tyler J.; Richards-White, Jena; Esser, Karyn A.; Dupont-Versteegden, Esther E.

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to compare the gene expression profile of mouse skeletal muscle undergoing two forms of growth (hypertrophy and regrowth) with the goal of identifying a conserved set of differentially expressed genes. Expression profiling by microarray was performed on the plantaris muscle subjected to 1, 3, 5, 7, 10, and 14 days of hypertrophy or regrowth following 2 wk of hind-limb suspension. We identified 97 differentially expressed genes (≥2-fold increase or ≥50% decrease compared with control muscle) that were conserved during the two forms of muscle growth. The vast majority (∼90%) of the differentially expressed genes was upregulated and occurred at a single time point (64 out of 86 genes), which most often was on the first day of the time course. Microarray analysis from the conserved upregulated genes showed a set of genes related to contractile apparatus and stress response at day 1, including three genes involved in mechanotransduction and four genes encoding heat shock proteins. Our analysis further identified three cell cycle-related genes at day and several genes associated with extracellular matrix (ECM) at both days 3 and 10. In conclusion, we have identified a core set of genes commonly upregulated in two forms of muscle growth that could play a role in the maintenance of sarcomere stability, ECM remodeling, cell proliferation, fast-to-slow fiber type transition, and the regulation of skeletal muscle growth. These findings suggest conserved regulatory mechanisms involved in the adaptation of skeletal muscle to increased mechanical loading. PMID:25554798

  18. A conserved cluster of three PRD-class homeobox genes (homeobrain, rx and orthopedia in the Cnidaria and Protostomia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mazza Maureen E

    2010-07-01

    temporal expression. Conclusion We report the first evidence for a PRD-class homeobox cluster that appears to have been conserved since the time of the cnidarian-bilaterian ancestor, and possibly even earlier, given the presence of a partial cluster in the placozoan Trichoplax. Very similar clusters comprising these three genes exist in Nematostella and diverse protostomes. Interestingly, in chordates, one member of the ancestral cluster (homeobrain has apparently been lost, and there is no linkage between rx and orthopedia in any of the vertebrates. In Nematostella, the spatial expression of these three genes along the body column is not colinear with their physical order in the cluster but the temporal expression is, therefore, using the terminology that has been applied to the Hox cluster genes, the HRO cluster would appear to exhibit temporal but not spatial colinearity. It remains to be seen whether the mechanisms responsible for the evolutionary conservation of the HRO cluster are the same mechanisms responsible for cohesion of the Hox cluster and other ANTP-class homeobox clusters that have been widely conserved throughout animal evolution.

  19. Human cytomegalovirus UL145 gene is highly conserved among ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    PRAKASH KUMAR

    correlated with their geographical origin. 4. Discussion. In the HCMV UL/b′ region, the UL146 gene has been characterized to encode a CXC chemokine that interferes with the recruitment of polymorphonuclear leukocytes at the site of infection (Penfold et al 1999; Saedrup et al 2002). Moreover, a TNF receptor-like protein ...

  20. Doublesex: a conserved downstream gene controlled by diverse ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    2010-09-06

    Sep 6, 2010 ... The Drosophila doublesex (dsx) gene at the bottom of the sex-determination cascade is the best charac- terized candidate so far, and is .... down of tra-2 in these insects results in complete reversal of genotypically female .... tributing the antagonistic effect of sex-specific Dsx proteins on their downstream ...

  1. Evidence of Positive Selection of Aquaporins Genes from Pontoporia blainvillei during the Evolutionary Process of Cetaceans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    São Pedro, Simone Lima; Alves, João Marcelo Pereira; Barreto, André Silva; Lima, André Oliveira de Souza

    2015-01-01

    Marine mammals are well adapted to their hyperosmotic environment. Several morphological and physiological adaptations for water conservation and salt excretion are known to be present in cetaceans, being responsible for regulating salt balance. However, most previous studies have focused on the unique renal physiology of marine mammals, but the molecular bases of these mechanisms remain poorly explored. Many genes have been identified to be involved in osmotic regulation, including the aquaporins. Considering that aquaporin genes were potentially subject to strong selective pressure, the aim of this study was to analyze the molecular evolution of seven aquaporin genes (AQP1, AQP2, AQP3, AQP4, AQP6, AQP7, and AQP9) comparing the lineages of cetaceans and terrestrial mammals. Our results demonstrated strong positive selection in cetacean-specific lineages acting only in the gene for AQP2 (amino acids 23, 83, 107,179, 180, 181, 182), whereas no selection was observed in terrestrial mammalian lineages. We also analyzed the changes in the 3D structure of the aquaporin 2 protein. Signs of strong positive selection in AQP2 sites 179, 180, 181, and 182 were unexpectedly identified only in the baiji lineage, which was the only river dolphin examined in this study. Positive selection in aquaporins AQP1 (45), AQP4 (74), AQP7 (342, 343, 356) was detected in cetaceans and artiodactyls, suggesting that these events are not related to maintaining water and electrolyte homeostasis in seawater. Our results suggest that the AQP2 gene might reflect different selective pressures in maintaining water balance in cetaceans, contributing to the passage from the terrestrial environment to the aquatic. Further studies are necessary, especially those including other freshwater dolphins, who exhibit osmoregulatory mechanisms different from those of marine cetaceans for the same essential task of maintaining serum electrolyte balance.

  2. Evidence of Positive Selection of Aquaporins Genes from Pontoporia blainvillei during the Evolutionary Process of Cetaceans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simone Lima São Pedro

    Full Text Available Marine mammals are well adapted to their hyperosmotic environment. Several morphological and physiological adaptations for water conservation and salt excretion are known to be present in cetaceans, being responsible for regulating salt balance. However, most previous studies have focused on the unique renal physiology of marine mammals, but the molecular bases of these mechanisms remain poorly explored. Many genes have been identified to be involved in osmotic regulation, including the aquaporins. Considering that aquaporin genes were potentially subject to strong selective pressure, the aim of this study was to analyze the molecular evolution of seven aquaporin genes (AQP1, AQP2, AQP3, AQP4, AQP6, AQP7, and AQP9 comparing the lineages of cetaceans and terrestrial mammals.Our results demonstrated strong positive selection in cetacean-specific lineages acting only in the gene for AQP2 (amino acids 23, 83, 107,179, 180, 181, 182, whereas no selection was observed in terrestrial mammalian lineages. We also analyzed the changes in the 3D structure of the aquaporin 2 protein. Signs of strong positive selection in AQP2 sites 179, 180, 181, and 182 were unexpectedly identified only in the baiji lineage, which was the only river dolphin examined in this study. Positive selection in aquaporins AQP1 (45, AQP4 (74, AQP7 (342, 343, 356 was detected in cetaceans and artiodactyls, suggesting that these events are not related to maintaining water and electrolyte homeostasis in seawater.Our results suggest that the AQP2 gene might reflect different selective pressures in maintaining water balance in cetaceans, contributing to the passage from the terrestrial environment to the aquatic. Further studies are necessary, especially those including other freshwater dolphins, who exhibit osmoregulatory mechanisms different from those of marine cetaceans for the same essential task of maintaining serum electrolyte balance.

  3. Clusters of conserved beta cell marker genes for assessment of beta cell phenotype

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Martens, Geert A; Jiang, Lei; Hellemans, Karine H

    2011-01-01

    The aim of this study was to establish a gene expression blueprint of pancreatic beta cells conserved from rodents to humans and to evaluate its applicability to assess shifts in the beta cell differentiated state. Genome-wide mRNA expression profiles of isolated beta cells were compared to those...... microdissected beta cells, monitor adaptations of the beta cell phenotype to fasting, and retrieve possible conserved transcriptional regulators....

  4. Constraints on genes shape long-term conservation of macro-synteny in metazoan genomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lv, Jie; Havlak, Paul; Putnam, Nicholas H

    2011-10-05

    Many metazoan genomes conserve chromosome-scale gene linkage relationships ("macro-synteny") from the common ancestor of multicellular animal life 1234, but the biological explanation for this conservation is still unknown. Double cut and join (DCJ) is a simple, well-studied model of neutral genome evolution amenable to both simulation and mathematical analysis 5, but as we show here, it is not sufficent to explain long-term macro-synteny conservation. We examine a family of simple (one-parameter) extensions of DCJ to identify models and choices of parameters consistent with the levels of macro- and micro-synteny conservation observed among animal genomes. Our software implements a flexible strategy for incorporating genomic context into the DCJ model to incorporate various types of genomic context ("DCJ-[C]"), and is available as open source software from http://github.com/putnamlab/dcj-c. A simple model of genome evolution, in which DCJ moves are allowed only if they maintain chromosomal linkage among a set of constrained genes, can simultaneously account for the level of macro-synteny conservation and for correlated conservation among multiple pairs of species. Simulations under this model indicate that a constraint on approximately 7% of metazoan genes is sufficient to constrain genome rearrangement to an average rate of 25 inversions and 1.7 translocations per million years.

  5. Inactivation of tumor suppressor genes and cancer therapy: An evolutionary game theory approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khadem, Heydar; Kebriaei, Hamed; Veisi, Zahra

    2017-06-01

    Inactivation of alleles in tumor suppressor genes (TSG) is one of the important issues resulting in evolution of cancerous cells. In this paper, the evolution of healthy, one and two missed allele cells is modeled using the concept of evolutionary game theory and replicator dynamics. The proposed model also takes into account the interaction rates of the cells as designing parameters of the system. Different combinations of the equilibrium points of the parameterized nonlinear system is studied and categorized into some cases. In each case, the interaction rates' values are suggested in a way that the equilibrium points of the replicator dynamics are located on an appropriate region of the state space. Based on the suggested interaction rates, it is proved that the system doesn't have any undesirable interior equilibrium point as well. Therefore, the system will converge to the desirable region, where there is a scanty level of cancerous cells. In addition, the proposed conditions for interaction rates guarantee that, when a trajectory of the system reaches the boundaries, then it will stay there forever which is a desirable property since the equilibrium points have been already located on the boundaries, appropriately. The simulation results show the effectiveness of the suggestions in the elimination of the cancerous cells in different scenarios. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Peculiar Evolutionary History of miR390-Guided TAS3-Like Genes in Land Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria S. Krasnikova

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available PCR-based approach was used as a phylogenetic profiling tool to probe genomic DNA samples from representatives of evolutionary distant moss taxa, namely, classes Bryopsida, Tetraphidopsida, Polytrichopsida, Andreaeopsida, and Sphagnopsida. We found relatives of all Physcomitrella patens miR390 and TAS3-like loci in these plant taxa excluding Sphagnopsida. Importantly, cloning and sequencing of Marchantia polymorpha genomic DNA showed miR390 and TAS3-like sequences which were also found among genomic reads of M. polymorpha at NCBI database. Our data suggest that the ancient plant miR390-dependent TAS molecular machinery firstly evolved to target AP2-like mRNAs in Marchantiophyta and only then both ARF- and AP2-specific mRNAs in mosses. The presented analysis shows that moss TAS3 families may undergone losses of tasiAP2 sites during evolution toward ferns and seed plants. These data confirm that miR390-guided genes coding for ARF- and AP2-specific ta-siRNAs have been gradually changed during land plant evolution.

  7. Evolutionary approaches for the reverse-engineering of gene regulatory networks: A study on a biologically realistic dataset

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gidrol Xavier

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Inferring gene regulatory networks from data requires the development of algorithms devoted to structure extraction. When only static data are available, gene interactions may be modelled by a Bayesian Network (BN that represents the presence of direct interactions from regulators to regulees by conditional probability distributions. We used enhanced evolutionary algorithms to stochastically evolve a set of candidate BN structures and found the model that best fits data without prior knowledge. Results We proposed various evolutionary strategies suitable for the task and tested our choices using simulated data drawn from a given bio-realistic network of 35 nodes, the so-called insulin network, which has been used in the literature for benchmarking. We assessed the inferred models against this reference to obtain statistical performance results. We then compared performances of evolutionary algorithms using two kinds of recombination operators that operate at different scales in the graphs. We introduced a niching strategy that reinforces diversity through the population and avoided trapping of the algorithm in one local minimum in the early steps of learning. We show the limited effect of the mutation operator when niching is applied. Finally, we compared our best evolutionary approach with various well known learning algorithms (MCMC, K2, greedy search, TPDA, MMHC devoted to BN structure learning. Conclusion We studied the behaviour of an evolutionary approach enhanced by niching for the learning of gene regulatory networks with BN. We show that this approach outperforms classical structure learning methods in elucidating the original model. These results were obtained for the learning of a bio-realistic network and, more importantly, on various small datasets. This is a suitable approach for learning transcriptional regulatory networks from real datasets without prior knowledge.

  8. Horizontal gene transfer: essentiality and evolvability in prokaryotes, and roles in evolutionary transitions [version 1; referees: 2 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eugene V. Koonin

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The wide spread of gene exchange and loss in the prokaryotic world has prompted the concept of ‘lateral genomics’ to the point of an outright denial of the relevance of phylogenetic trees for evolution. However, the pronounced coherence congruence of the topologies of numerous gene trees, particularly those for (nearly universal genes, translates into the notion of a statistical tree of life (STOL, which reflects a central trend of vertical evolution. The STOL can be employed as a framework for reconstruction of the evolutionary processes in the prokaryotic world. Quantitatively, however, horizontal gene transfer (HGT dominates microbial evolution, with the rate of gene gain and loss being comparable to the rate of point mutations and much greater than the duplication rate. Theoretical models of evolution suggest that HGT is essential for the survival of microbial populations that otherwise deteriorate due to the Muller’s ratchet effect. Apparently, at least some bacteria and archaea evolved dedicated vehicles for gene transfer that evolved from selfish elements such as plasmids and viruses. Recent phylogenomic analyses suggest that episodes of massive HGT were pivotal for the emergence of major groups of organisms such as multiple archaeal phyla as well as eukaryotes. Similar analyses appear to indicate that, in addition to donating hundreds of genes to the emerging eukaryotic lineage, mitochondrial endosymbiosis severely curtailed HGT. These results shed new light on the routes of evolutionary transitions, but caution is due given the inherent uncertainty of deep phylogenies.

  9. Mitochondrial DNA haplotype distribution patterns in Pinus ponderosa (pinaceae): range-wide evolutionary history and implications for conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kevin M. Potter; Valerie D. Hipkins; Mary F. Mahalovich; Robert E. Means

    2013-01-01

    Premise of the study: Ponderosa pine ( Pinus ponderosa Douglas ex P. Lawson & C. Lawson) exhibits complicated patterns of morphological and genetic variation across its range in western North America. This study aims to clarify P. ponderosa evolutionary history and phylogeography using a highly polymorphic...

  10. Aligning science and policy to achieve evolutionarily enlightened conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Carly N; Sgrò, Carla M

    2017-06-01

    There is increasing recognition among conservation scientists that long-term conservation outcomes could be improved through better integration of evolutionary theory into management practices. Despite concerns that the importance of key concepts emerging from evolutionary theory (i.e., evolutionary principles and processes) are not being recognized by managers, there has been little effort to determine the level of integration of evolutionary theory into conservation policy and practice. We assessed conservation policy at 3 scales (international, national, and provincial) on 3 continents to quantify the degree to which key evolutionary concepts, such as genetic diversity and gene flow, are being incorporated into conservation practice. We also evaluated the availability of clear guidance within the applied evolutionary biology literature as to how managers can change their management practices to achieve better conservation outcomes. Despite widespread recognition of the importance of maintaining genetic diversity, conservation policies provide little guidance about how this can be achieved in practice and other relevant evolutionary concepts, such as inbreeding depression, are mentioned rarely. In some cases the poor integration of evolutionary concepts into management reflects a lack of decision-support tools in the literature. Where these tools are available, such as risk-assessment frameworks, they are not being adopted by conservation policy makers, suggesting that the availability of a strong evidence base is not the only barrier to evolutionarily enlightened management. We believe there is a clear need for more engagement by evolutionary biologists with policy makers to develop practical guidelines that will help managers make changes to conservation practice. There is also an urgent need for more research to better understand the barriers to and opportunities for incorporating evolutionary theory into conservation practice. © 2016 Society for Conservation

  11. Evolutionary re-wiring of p63 and the epigenomic regulatory landscape in keratinocytes and its potential implications on species-specific gene expression and phenotypes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sethi, Isha; Gluck, Christian; Zhou, Huiqing

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Although epidermal keratinocyte development and differentiation proceeds in similar fashion between humans and mice, evolutionary pressures have also wrought significant species-specific physiological differences. These differences between species could arise in part, by the rewiring of regulatory network due to changes in the global targets of lineage-specific transcriptional master regulators such as p63. Here we have performed a systematic and comparative analysis of the p63 target gene network within the integrated framework of the transcriptomic and epigenomic landscape of mouse and human keratinocytes. We determined that there exists a core set of ∼1600 genomic regions distributed among enhancers and super-enhancers, which are conserved and occupied by p63 in keratinocytes from both species. Notably, these DNA segments are typified by consensus p63 binding motifs under purifying selection and are associated with genes involved in key keratinocyte and skin-centric biological processes. However, the majority of the p63-bound mouse target regions consist of either murine-specific DNA elements that are not alignable to the human genome or exhibit no p63 binding in the orthologous syntenic regions, typifying an occupancy lost subset. Our results suggest that these evolutionarily divergent regions have undergone significant turnover of p63 binding sites and are associated with an underlying inactive and inaccessible chromatin state, indicative of their selective functional activity in the transcriptional regulatory network in mouse but not human. Furthermore, we demonstrate that this selective targeting of genes by p63 correlates with subtle, but measurable transcriptional differences in mouse and human keratinocytes that converges on major metabolic processes, which often exhibit species-specific trends. Collectively our study offers possible molecular explanation for the observable phenotypic differences between the mouse and human skin and broadly

  12. A highly polymorphic insertion in the Y-chromosome amelogenin gene can be used for evolutionary biology, population genetics and sexing in Cetacea and Artiodactyla

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Crouau-Roy Brigitte

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The early radiation of the Cetartiodactyla is complex, and unambiguous molecular characters are needed to clarify the positions of hippotamuses, camels and pigs relative to the remaining taxa (Cetacea and Ruminantia. There is also a need for informative genealogic markers for Y-chromosome population genetics as well as a sexing method applicable to all species from this group. We therefore studied the sequence variation of a partial sequence of the evolutionary conserved amelogenin gene to assess its potential use in each of these fields. Results and discussion We report a large interstitial insertion in the Y amelogenin locus in most of the Cetartiodactyla lineages (cetaceans and ruminants. This sex-linked size polymorphism is the result of a 460–465 bp inserted element in intron 4 of the amelogenin gene of Ruminants and Cetaceans. Therefore, this polymorphism can easily be used in a sexing assay for these species. When taking into account this shared character in addition to nucleotide sequence, gene genealogy follows sex-chromosome divergence in Cetartiodactyla whereas it is more congruent with zoological history when ignoring these characters. This could be related to a loss of homology between chromosomal copies given the old age of the insertion. The 1 kbp Amel-Y amplified fragment is also characterized by high nucleotide diversity (64 polymorphic sites spanning over 1 kbp in seven haplotypes which is greater than for other Y-chromosome sequence markers studied so far but less than the mitochondrial control region. Conclusion The gender-dependent polymorphism we have identified is relevant not only for phylogenic inference within the Cetartiodactyla but also for Y-chromosome based population genetics and gender determination in cetaceans and ruminants. One single protocol can therefore be used for studies in population and evolutionary genetics, reproductive biotechnologies, and forensic science.

  13. Evolutionary profiling reveals the heterogeneous origins of classes of human disease genes: implications for modeling disease genetics in animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maxwell, Evan K; Schnitzler, Christine E; Havlak, Paul; Putnam, Nicholas H; Nguyen, Anh-Dao; Moreland, R Travis; Baxevanis, Andreas D

    2014-10-04

    The recent expansion of whole-genome sequence data available from diverse animal lineages provides an opportunity to investigate the evolutionary origins of specific classes of human disease genes. Previous studies have observed that human disease genes are of particularly ancient origin. While this suggests that many animal species have the potential to serve as feasible models for research on genes responsible for human disease, it is unclear whether this pattern has meaningful implications and whether it prevails for every class of human disease. We used a comparative genomics approach encompassing a broad phylogenetic range of animals with sequenced genomes to determine the evolutionary patterns exhibited by human genes associated with different classes of disease. Our results support previous claims that most human disease genes are of ancient origin but, more importantly, we also demonstrate that several specific disease classes have a significantly large proportion of genes that emerged relatively recently within the metazoans and/or vertebrates. An independent assessment of the synonymous to non-synonymous substitution rates of human disease genes found in mammals reveals that disease classes that arose more recently also display unexpected rates of purifying selection between their mammalian and human counterparts. Our results reveal the heterogeneity underlying the evolutionary origins of (and selective pressures on) different classes of human disease genes. For example, some disease gene classes appear to be of uncommonly recent (i.e., vertebrate-specific) origin and, as a whole, have been evolving at a faster rate within mammals than the majority of disease classes having more ancient origins. The novel patterns that we have identified may provide new insight into cases where studies using traditional animal models were unable to produce results that translated to humans. Conversely, we note that the larger set of disease classes do have ancient origins

  14. [Study on evolutionary origin of influenza A virus (H1N1) based on HA gene].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Yi-Han; Ju, Li-Wen; Jiang, Lu-Fang; Yang, Ji-Xing; Shi, Qiang; Jiang, Qing-Wu

    2009-07-01

    To determine the evolutionary rate and divergence time of influenza A virus HA gene isolated recently worldwide pandemic and explore the origin and its transmission. A total of 344 H1 sequences available in the GenBank (including 248 isolated from human, 84 from swine, 11 from avian, and 1 from ferret) and 7 isolated in Shanghai were collected. The nucleotide substitution rate and time to most recent common ancestor (tMRCA) was calculated using molecular clock theory and Bayesian Skyline Plot (BSP) based on Markov chain Monte Carlo. Then genetic phylogeny was constructed referring to posterior distribution. It was found that H1 sequences in the US from human, swine and avian were clustered significantly with swine H1 ones from Asia phylogenetically (Cluster US). The second cluster (Cluster Eurasian Human) nearly consisted of human H1 sequences isolated in other regions. The third cluster (Cluster Eurasian Animal) consisted of swine and avian H1 sequences from China and Italy respectively. As for all the H1 sequences, the evolutionary rate was of 2.57 x 10(-3) substitutions/site per year averagely (95% Highest Posterior Density: 1.96 x 10(-3) - 3.03 x 10(-3)/site per year). The estimated dates for tMRCA of human H1 in Europe and swine H1 in the mainland of China were the earliest, with the corresponding rates of 6.46 x 10(-3)/site per year and 0.97 x 10(-3)/site per year respectively. The tMRCAs of human and swine H1 sequences from the US were similar, with the rates of 5.86 x 10(-3)/site per year and 5.02 x 10(-3)/site per year. The present flu outbreak was possibly induced by long-term circulation of influenza A virus (H1N1) in human population and swine herds in America. There was no evidence proving that influenza virus in China involved in the present outbreak.

  15. Evidence for intron length conservation in a set of mammalian genes associated with embryonic development

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    2011-10-05

    Abstract Background We carried out an analysis of intron length conservation across a diverse group of nineteen mammalian species. Motivated by recent research suggesting a role for time delays associated with intron transcription in gene expression oscillations required for early embryonic patterning, we searched for examples of genes that showed the most extreme conservation of total intron content in mammals. Results Gene sets annotated as being involved in pattern specification in the early embryo or containing the homeobox DNA-binding domain, were significantly enriched among genes with highly conserved intron content. We used ancestral sequences reconstructed with probabilistic models that account for insertion and deletion mutations to distinguish insertion and deletion events on lineages leading to human and mouse from their last common ancestor. Using a randomization procedure, we show that genes containing the homeobox domain show less change in intron content than expected, given the number of insertion and deletion events within their introns. Conclusions Our results suggest selection for gene expression precision or the existence of additional development-associated genes for which transcriptional delay is functionally significant.

  16. What have humans done for evolutionary biology? Contributions from genes to populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Briga, Michael; Griffin, Robert M; Berger, Vérane; Pettay, Jenni E; Lummaa, Virpi

    2017-11-15

    Many fundamental concepts in evolutionary biology were discovered using non-human study systems. Humans are poorly suited to key study designs used to advance this field, and are subject to cultural, technological, and medical influences often considered to restrict the pertinence of human studies to other species and general contexts. Whether studies using current and recent human populations provide insights that have broader biological relevance in evolutionary biology is, therefore, frequently questioned. We first surveyed researchers in evolutionary biology and related fields on their opinions regarding whether studies on contemporary humans can advance evolutionary biology. Almost all 442 participants agreed that humans still evolve, but fewer agreed that this occurs through natural selection. Most agreed that human studies made valuable contributions to evolutionary biology, although those less exposed to human studies expressed more negative views. With a series of examples, we discuss strengths and limitations of evolutionary studies on contemporary humans. These show that human studies provide fundamental insights into evolutionary processes, improve understanding of the biology of many other species, and will make valuable contributions to evolutionary biology in the future. © 2017 The Author(s).

  17. Comparative Annotation of Viral Genomes with Non-Conserved Gene Structure

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    de Groot, Saskia; Mailund, Thomas; Hein, Jotun

    2007-01-01

    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...

  18. 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

    2007-01-01

    , 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...

  19. Ancient exaptation of a CORE-SINE retroposon into a highly conserved mammalian neuronal enhancer of the proopiomelanocortin gene.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea M Santangelo

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available The proopiomelanocortin gene (POMC is expressed in the pituitary gland and the ventral hypothalamus of all jawed vertebrates, producing several bioactive peptides that function as peripheral hormones or central neuropeptides, respectively. We have recently determined that mouse and human POMC expression in the hypothalamus is conferred by the action of two 5' distal and unrelated enhancers, nPE1 and nPE2. To investigate the evolutionary origin of the neuronal enhancer nPE2, we searched available vertebrate genome databases and determined that nPE2 is a highly conserved element in placentals, marsupials, and monotremes, whereas it is absent in nonmammalian vertebrates. Following an in silico paleogenomic strategy based on genome-wide searches for paralog sequences, we discovered that opossum and wallaby nPE2 sequences are highly similar to members of the superfamily of CORE-short interspersed nucleotide element (SINE retroposons, in particular to MAR1 retroposons that are widely present in marsupial genomes. Thus, the neuronal enhancer nPE2 originated from the exaptation of a CORE-SINE retroposon in the lineage leading to mammals and remained under purifying selection in all mammalian orders for the last 170 million years. Expression studies performed in transgenic mice showed that two nonadjacent nPE2 subregions are essential to drive reporter gene expression into POMC hypothalamic neurons, providing the first functional example of an exapted enhancer derived from an ancient CORE-SINE retroposon. In addition, we found that this CORE-SINE family of retroposons is likely to still be active in American and Australian marsupial genomes and that several highly conserved exonic, intronic and intergenic sequences in the human genome originated from the exaptation of CORE-SINE retroposons. Together, our results provide clear evidence of the functional novelties that transposed elements contributed to their host genomes throughout evolution.

  20. Ancient exaptation of a CORE-SINE retroposon into a highly conserved mammalian neuronal enhancer of the proopiomelanocortin gene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santangelo, Andrea M; de Souza, Flávio S J; Franchini, Lucía F; Bumaschny, Viviana F; Low, Malcolm J; Rubinstein, Marcelo

    2007-10-01

    The proopiomelanocortin gene (POMC) is expressed in the pituitary gland and the ventral hypothalamus of all jawed vertebrates, producing several bioactive peptides that function as peripheral hormones or central neuropeptides, respectively. We have recently determined that mouse and human POMC expression in the hypothalamus is conferred by the action of two 5' distal and unrelated enhancers, nPE1 and nPE2. To investigate the evolutionary origin of the neuronal enhancer nPE2, we searched available vertebrate genome databases and determined that nPE2 is a highly conserved element in placentals, marsupials, and monotremes, whereas it is absent in nonmammalian vertebrates. Following an in silico paleogenomic strategy based on genome-wide searches for paralog sequences, we discovered that opossum and wallaby nPE2 sequences are highly similar to members of the superfamily of CORE-short interspersed nucleotide element (SINE) retroposons, in particular to MAR1 retroposons that are widely present in marsupial genomes. Thus, the neuronal enhancer nPE2 originated from the exaptation of a CORE-SINE retroposon in the lineage leading to mammals and remained under purifying selection in all mammalian orders for the last 170 million years. Expression studies performed in transgenic mice showed that two nonadjacent nPE2 subregions are essential to drive reporter gene expression into POMC hypothalamic neurons, providing the first functional example of an exapted enhancer derived from an ancient CORE-SINE retroposon. In addition, we found that this CORE-SINE family of retroposons is likely to still be active in American and Australian marsupial genomes and that several highly conserved exonic, intronic and intergenic sequences in the human genome originated from the exaptation of CORE-SINE retroposons. Together, our results provide clear evidence of the functional novelties that transposed elements contributed to their host genomes throughout evolution.

  1. Mining the Cicer arietinum genome for the mildew locus O (Mlo) gene family and comparative evolutionary analysis of the Mlo genes from Medicago truncatula and some other plant species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deshmukh, Reena; Singh, V K; Singh, Brahma Deo

    2017-03-01

    The mildew locus O (Mlo) gene family is ubiquitous in land plants. Some members of this gene family are involved in negative regulation of powdery mildew resistance, while others are involved in several other biological functions. Mlo proteins have characteristic seven transmembrane domains and a calmodulin-binding domain at their C-termini, and are associated with plasma membrane. The Mlo gene family has been studied in several economically important cereals, but little information is available on this gene family in the important legumes, Medicago truncatula Gaertn. and Cicer arietinum L. We carried out a comprehensive and comparative investigation of the Mlo gene family in these two species using the genome sequences available at the M. truncatula genome database (Mt v4.0) and NCBI (C. arietinum). A genome-wide homology-based search using Arabidopsis Mlo proteins as query identified 16 MtMlo (M. truncatula Mlo) and 14 CarMlo (C. arietinum Mlo) genes. The MtMlo and CarMlo genes had comparable gene structure, protein sequence and topology. Their chromosomal locations indicated the occurrence of extensive reorganization in the genomes of the two species after their divergence from the common ancestor. A multiple sequence alignment of 53 Mlo proteins from these two and several other species showed a highly conserved sequence block of seven amino acids, viz., L-ETPTW, towards their N-termini. The evolutionary phylogenetic analysis grouped the MtMlo and CarMlo members into four clusters, and most of the MtMlo and CarMlo members formed one-to-one ortholog pairs. The ka/ks analyses indicated that the MtMlo and CarMlo genes are subjected to intense purifying selection.

  2. Analysis of the molecular evolutionary history of the ascorbate peroxidase gene family: inferences from the rice genome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teixeira, Felipe Karam; Menezes-Benavente, Larissa; Margis, Rogério; Margis-Pinheiro, Márcia

    2004-12-01

    Ascorbate peroxidase (APx) is a class I peroxidase that catalyzes the conversion of H(2)O(2) to H(2)O and O(2) using ascorbate as the specific electron donor. This enzyme has a key function in scavenging reactive oxygen species (ROS) and the protection against toxic effects of ROS in higher plants, algae, and Euglena. Here we report the identification of an APx multigene family in rice and propose a molecular evolutionary relationship between the diverse APx isoforms. In rice, the APx gene family has eight members, which encode two cytosolic, two putative peroxisomal, and four chloroplastic isoforms, respectively. Phylogenetic analyses were conducted using all APx protein sequences available in the NCBI databases. The results indicate that the different APx isoforms arose by a complex evolutionary process involving several gene duplications. The structural organization of APx genes also reflects this process and provides evidence for a close relationship among proteins located in the same subcellular compartment. A molecular evolutionary pathway, in which cytosolic and peroxisomal isoforms diverged early from chloroplastic ones, is proposed.

  3. Contrasting evolutionary patterns of 28S and ITS rRNA genes reveal high intragenomic variation in Cephalenchus (Nematoda): Implications for species delimitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Tiago José; Baldwin, James Gordon

    2016-05-01

    Concerted evolution is often assumed to be the evolutionary force driving multi-family genes, including those from ribosomal DNA (rDNA) repeat, to complete homogenization within a species, although cases of non-concerted evolution have been also documented. In this study, sequence variation of 28S and ITS ribosomal RNA (rRNA) genes in the genus Cephalenchus is assessed at three different levels, intragenomic, intraspecific, and interspecific. The findings suggest that not all Cephalenchus species undergo concerted evolution. High levels of intraspecific polymorphism, mostly due to intragenomic variation, are found in Cephalenchus sp1 (BRA-01). Secondary structure analyses of both rRNA genes and across different species show a similar substitution pattern, including mostly compensatory (CBC) and semi-compensatory (SBC) base changes, thus suggesting the functionality of these rRNA copies despite the variation found in some species. This view is also supported by low sequence variation in the 5.8S gene in relation to the flanking ITS-1 and ITS-2 as well as by the existence of conserved motifs in the former gene. It is suggested that potential cross-fertilization in some Cephalenchus species, based on inspection of female reproductive system, might contribute to both intragenomic and intraspecific polymorphism of their rRNA genes. These results reinforce the potential implications of intragenomic and intraspecific genetic diversity on species delimitation, especially in biodiversity studies based solely on metagenetic approaches. Knowledge of sequence variation will be crucial for accurate species diversity estimation using molecular methods. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. LA CONSERVACIÓN BIOLÓGICA Y SU PERSPECTIVA EVOLUTIVA Biological Conservation and its Evolutionary Perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    OLGA L MONTENEGRO

    Full Text Available Este artículo revisa tres de las principales causas de amenaza a la diversidad biológica, como son la fragmentación y pérdida del hábitat, así como la invasión de especies exóticas, principalmente en lo que compete a sus implicaciones evolutivas. Los efectos de la fragmentación y/o pérdida del hábitat pueden revisarse a la luz de la sinergia entre factores demográficos y genéticos que moldean cambios evolutivos o que llevan a las poblaciones al vórtice de la extinción. Las invasiones biológicas, aunque han generado pérdidas considerables en la diversidad biológica, ofrecen un escenario interesante para estudiar procesos evolutivos contemporáneos.This paper reviews three of the main threats to biological diversity, such as habitat fragmentation /habitat loss, and invasion of exotic species, mainly from their evolutionary implications. Effects of habitat fragmentation/habitat loss could be addressed by looking at the synergy between demographic and genetic factors that together shape evolutionary changes or otherwise bring populations to extinction vortex. Biological invasions, in spite of their strong negative effects on biological diversity, offer an interesting scenario to study contemporary evolutionary processes.

  5. Structural, Functional, and Evolutionary Analysis of the Unusually Large Stilbene Synthase Gene Family in Grapevine1[W

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parage, Claire; Tavares, Raquel; Réty, Stéphane; Baltenweck-Guyot, Raymonde; Poutaraud, Anne; Renault, Lauriane; Heintz, Dimitri; Lugan, Raphaël; Marais, Gabriel A.B.; Aubourg, Sébastien; Hugueney, Philippe

    2012-01-01

    Stilbenes are a small family of phenylpropanoids produced in a number of unrelated plant species, including grapevine (Vitis vinifera). In addition to their participation in defense mechanisms in plants, stilbenes, such as resveratrol, display important pharmacological properties and are postulated to be involved in the health benefits associated with a moderate consumption of red wine. Stilbene synthases (STSs), which catalyze the biosynthesis of the stilbene backbone, seem to have evolved from chalcone synthases (CHSs) several times independently in stilbene-producing plants. STS genes usually form small families of two to five closely related paralogs. By contrast, the sequence of grapevine reference genome (cv PN40024) has revealed an unusually large STS gene family. Here, we combine molecular evolution and structural and functional analyses to investigate further the high number of STS genes in grapevine. Our reannotation of the STS and CHS gene families yielded 48 STS genes, including at least 32 potentially functional ones. Functional characterization of nine genes representing most of the STS gene family diversity clearly indicated that these genes do encode for proteins with STS activity. Evolutionary analysis of the STS gene family revealed that both STS and CHS evolution are dominated by purifying selection, with no evidence for strong selection for new functions among STS genes. However, we found a few sites under different selection pressures in CHS and STS sequences, whose potential functional consequences are discussed using a structural model of a typical STS from grapevine that we developed. PMID:22961129

  6. Genes are information, so information theory is coming to the aid of evolutionary biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sherwin, William B

    2015-11-01

    Speciation is central to evolutionary biology, and to elucidate it, we need to catch the early genetic changes that set nascent taxa on their path to species status (Via 2009). That challenge is difficult, of course, for two chief reasons: (i) serendipity is required to catch speciation in the act; and (ii) after a short time span with lingering gene flow, differentiation may be low and/or embodied only in rare alleles that are difficult to sample. In this issue of Molecular Ecology Resources, Smouse et al. (2015) have noted that optimal assessment of differentiation within and between nascent species should be robust to these challenges, and they identified a measure based on Shannon's information theory that has many advantages for this and numerous other tasks. The Shannon measure exhibits complete additivity of information at different levels of subdivision. Of all the family of diversity measures ('0' or allele counts, '1' or Shannon, '2' or heterozygosity, F(ST) and related metrics) Shannon's measure comes closest to weighting alleles by their frequencies. For the Shannon measure, rare alleles that represent early signals of nascent speciation are neither down-weighted to the point of irrelevance, as for level 2 measures, nor up-weighted to overpowering importance, as for level 0 measures (Chao et al. 2010, )2015. Shannon measures have a long history in population genetics, dating back to Shannon's PhD thesis in 1940 (Crow 2001), but have received only sporadic attention, until a resurgence of interest in the last ten years, as reviewed briefly by Smouse et al. (2015). © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  7. Characterization of the Bacteroides fragilis bfr gene product identifies a bacterial DPS-like protein and suggests evolutionary links in the ferritin superfamily.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gauss, George H; Reott, Michael A; Rocha, Edson R; Young, Mark J; Douglas, Trevor; Smith, C Jeffrey; Lawrence, C Martin

    2012-01-01

    A factor contributing to the pathogenicity of Bacteroides fragilis, the most common anaerobic species isolated from clinical infections, is the bacterium's extreme aerotolerance, which allows survival in oxygenated tissues prior to anaerobic abscess formation. We investigated the role of the bacterioferritin-related (bfr) gene in the B. fragilis oxidative stress response. The bfr mRNA levels are increased in stationary phase or in response to O(2) or iron. In addition, bfr null mutants exhibit reduced aerotolerance, and the bfr gene product protects DNA from hydroxyl radical cleavage in vitro. Crystallographic studies revealed a protein with a dodecameric structure and greater similarity to an archaeal DNA protection in starved cells (DPS)-like protein than to the 24-subunit bacterioferritins. Similarity to the DPS-like (DPSL) protein extends to the subunit and includes a pair of conserved cysteine residues juxtaposed to a buried dimetal binding site within the four-helix bundle. Compared to archaeal DPSLs, however, this bacterial DPSL protein contains several unique features, including a significantly different conformation in the C-terminal tail that alters the number and location of pores leading to the central cavity and a conserved metal binding site on the interior surface of the dodecamer. Combined, these characteristics confirm this new class of miniferritin in the bacterial domain, delineate the similarities and differences between bacterial DPSL proteins and their archaeal homologs, allow corrected annotations for B. fragilis bfr and other dpsl genes within the bacterial domain, and suggest an evolutionary link within the ferritin superfamily that connects dodecameric DPS to the (bacterio)ferritin 24-mer.

  8. Evolutionary relationships and diversification of barhl genes within retinal cell lineages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuhmacher, Laura-Nadine; Albadri, Shahad; Ramialison, Mirana; Poggi, Lucia

    2011-11-21

    Basic helix-loop-helix and homeodomain transcription factors have been shown to specify all different neuronal cell subtypes composing the vertebrate retina. The appearance of gene paralogs of such retina-specific transcription factors in lower vertebrates, with differently evolved function and/or conserved non-coding elements, might provide an important source for the generation of neuronal diversity within the vertebrate retinal architecture. In line with this hypothesis, we investigated the evolution of the homeobox Barhl family of transcription factors, barhl1 and barhl2, in the teleost and tetrapod lineages. In tetrapod barhl2, but not barhl1, is expressed in the retina and is important for amacrine cell specification. Zebrafish has three barhl paralogs: barhl1.1, barhl1.2 and barhl2, but their precise spatio-temporal retinal expression, as well as their function is yet unknown. Here we performed a meticulous expression pattern comparison of all known barhl fish paralogs and described a novel barhl paralog in medaka. Our detailed analysis of zebrafish barhl gene expression in wild type and mutant retinas revealed that only barhl1.2 and barhl2 are present in the retina. We also showed that these two paralogs are expressed in distinct neuronal lineages and are differently regulated by Atoh7, a key retinal-specific transcription factor. Finally, we found that the two retained medaka fish barhl paralogs, barhl1 and barhl2, are both expressed in the retina, in a pattern reminiscent of zebrafish barhl1.2 and barhl2 respectively. By performing phylogenetic and synteny analysis, we provide evidence that barhl retinal expression domain is an ancestral feature, probably lost in tetrapods due to functional redundancy. Functional differences among retained paralogs of key retina-specific transcription factors between teleosts and tetrapods might provide important clues for understanding their potential impact on the generation of retinal neuronal diversity. Intriguingly

  9. Evolutionary relationships and diversification of barhl genes within retinal cell lineages

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Schuhmacher Laura-Nadine

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Basic helix-loop-helix and homeodomain transcription factors have been shown to specify all different neuronal cell subtypes composing the vertebrate retina. The appearance of gene paralogs of such retina-specific transcription factors in lower vertebrates, with differently evolved function and/or conserved non-coding elements, might provide an important source for the generation of neuronal diversity within the vertebrate retinal architecture. In line with this hypothesis, we investigated the evolution of the homeobox Barhl family of transcription factors, barhl1 and barhl2, in the teleost and tetrapod lineages. In tetrapod barhl2, but not barhl1, is expressed in the retina and is important for amacrine cell specification. Zebrafish has three barhl paralogs: barhl1.1, barhl1.2 and barhl2, but their precise spatio-temporal retinal expression, as well as their function is yet unknown. Results Here we performed a meticulous expression pattern comparison of all known barhl fish paralogs and described a novel barhl paralog in medaka. Our detailed analysis of zebrafish barhl gene expression in wild type and mutant retinas revealed that only barhl1.2 and barhl2 are present in the retina. We also showed that these two paralogs are expressed in distinct neuronal lineages and are differently regulated by Atoh7, a key retinal-specific transcription factor. Finally, we found that the two retained medaka fish barhl paralogs, barhl1 and barhl2, are both expressed in the retina, in a pattern reminiscent of zebrafish barhl1.2 and barhl2 respectively. By performing phylogenetic and synteny analysis, we provide evidence that barhl retinal expression domain is an ancestral feature, probably lost in tetrapods due to functional redundancy. Conclusions Functional differences among retained paralogs of key retina-specific transcription factors between teleosts and tetrapods might provide important clues for understanding their potential impact on

  10. Mitochondrial DNA haplotype distribution patterns in Pinus ponderosa (Pinaceae): range-wide evolutionary history and implications for conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Potter, Kevin M; Hipkins, Valerie D; Mahalovich, Mary F; Means, Robert E

    2013-08-01

    Ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa Douglas ex P. Lawson & C. Lawson) exhibits complicated patterns of morphological and genetic variation across its range in western North America. This study aims to clarify P. ponderosa evolutionary history and phylogeography using a highly polymorphic mitochondrial DNA marker, with results offering insights into how geographical and climatological processes drove the modern evolutionary structure of tree species in the region. We amplified the mtDNA nad1 second intron minisatellite region for 3,100 trees representing 104 populations, and sequenced all length variants. We estimated population-level haplotypic diversity and determined diversity partitioning among varieties, races and populations. After aligning sequences of minisatellite repeat motifs, we evaluated evolutionary relationships among haplotypes. The geographical structuring of the 10 haplotypes corresponded with division between Pacific and Rocky Mountain varieties. Pacific haplotypes clustered with high bootstrap support, and appear to have descended from Rocky Mountain haplotypes. A greater proportion of diversity was partitioned between Rocky Mountain races than between Pacific races. Areas of highest haplotypic diversity were the southern Sierra Nevada mountain range in California, northwestern California, and southern Nevada. Pinus ponderosa haplotype distribution patterns suggest a complex phylogeographic history not revealed by other genetic and morphological data, or by the sparse paleoecological record. The results appear consistent with long-term divergence between the Pacific and Rocky Mountain varieties, along with more recent divergences not well-associated with race. Pleistocene refugia may have existed in areas of high haplotypic diversity, as well as the Great Basin, Southwestern United States/northern Mexico, and the High Plains.

  11. Seed storage protein gene promoters contain conserved DNA motifs in Brassicaceae, Fabaceae and Poaceae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fauteux, François; Strömvik, Martina V

    2009-01-01

    Background Accurate computational identification of cis-regulatory motifs is difficult, particularly in eukaryotic promoters, which typically contain multiple short and degenerate DNA sequences bound by several interacting factors. Enrichment in combinations of rare motifs in the promoter sequence of functionally or evolutionarily related genes among several species is an indicator of conserved transcriptional regulatory mechanisms. This provides a basis for the computational identification of cis-regulatory motifs. Results We have used a discriminative seeding DNA motif discovery algorithm for an in-depth analysis of 54 seed storage protein (SSP) gene promoters from three plant families, namely Brassicaceae (mustards), Fabaceae (legumes) and Poaceae (grasses) using backgrounds based on complete sets of promoters from a representative species in each family, namely Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) Heynh.), soybean (Glycine max (L.) Merr.) and rice (Oryza sativa L.) respectively. We have identified three conserved motifs (two RY-like and one ACGT-like) in Brassicaceae and Fabaceae SSP gene promoters that are similar to experimentally characterized seed-specific cis-regulatory elements. Fabaceae SSP gene promoter sequences are also enriched in a novel, seed-specific E2Fb-like motif. Conserved motifs identified in Poaceae SSP gene promoters include a GCN4-like motif, two prolamin-box-like motifs and an Skn-1-like motif. Evidence of the presence of a variant of the TATA-box is found in the SSP gene promoters from the three plant families. Motifs discovered in SSP gene promoters were used to score whole-genome sets of promoters from Arabidopsis, soybean and rice. The highest-scoring promoters are associated with genes coding for different subunits or precursors of seed storage proteins. Conclusion Seed storage protein gene promoter motifs are conserved in diverse species, and different plant families are characterized by a distinct combination of conserved motifs

  12. Seed storage protein gene promoters contain conserved DNA motifs in Brassicaceae, Fabaceae and Poaceae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fauteux François

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Accurate computational identification of cis-regulatory motifs is difficult, particularly in eukaryotic promoters, which typically contain multiple short and degenerate DNA sequences bound by several interacting factors. Enrichment in combinations of rare motifs in the promoter sequence of functionally or evolutionarily related genes among several species is an indicator of conserved transcriptional regulatory mechanisms. This provides a basis for the computational identification of cis-regulatory motifs. Results We have used a discriminative seeding DNA motif discovery algorithm for an in-depth analysis of 54 seed storage protein (SSP gene promoters from three plant families, namely Brassicaceae (mustards, Fabaceae (legumes and Poaceae (grasses using backgrounds based on complete sets of promoters from a representative species in each family, namely Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana (L. Heynh., soybean (Glycine max (L. Merr. and rice (Oryza sativa L. respectively. We have identified three conserved motifs (two RY-like and one ACGT-like in Brassicaceae and Fabaceae SSP gene promoters that are similar to experimentally characterized seed-specific cis-regulatory elements. Fabaceae SSP gene promoter sequences are also enriched in a novel, seed-specific E2Fb-like motif. Conserved motifs identified in Poaceae SSP gene promoters include a GCN4-like motif, two prolamin-box-like motifs and an Skn-1-like motif. Evidence of the presence of a variant of the TATA-box is found in the SSP gene promoters from the three plant families. Motifs discovered in SSP gene promoters were used to score whole-genome sets of promoters from Arabidopsis, soybean and rice. The highest-scoring promoters are associated with genes coding for different subunits or precursors of seed storage proteins. Conclusion Seed storage protein gene promoter motifs are conserved in diverse species, and different plant families are characterized by a distinct combination

  13. Conservation of Pax gene expression in ectodermal placodes of the lamprey

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCauley, David W.; Bronner-Fraser, Marianne

    2002-01-01

    Ectodermal placodes contribute to the cranial ganglia and sense organs of the head and, together with neural crest cells, represent defining features of the vertebrate embryo. The identity of different placodes appears to be specified in part by the expression of different Pax genes, with Pax-3/7 class genes being expressed in the trigeminal placode of mice, chick, frogs and fish, and Pax-2/5/8 class genes expressed in the otic placode. Here, we present the cloning and expression pattern of lamprey Pax-7 and Pax-2, which mark the trigeminal and otic placodes, respectively, as well as other structures characteristic of vertebrate Pax genes. These results suggest conservation of Pax genes and placodal structures in basal and derived vertebrates.

  14. Similarity-based gene detection: using COGs to find evolutionarily-conserved ORFs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hutchison Clyde A

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Experimental verification of gene products has not kept pace with the rapid growth of microbial sequence information. However, existing annotations of gene locations contain sufficient information to screen for probable errors. Furthermore, comparisons among genomes become more informative as more genomes are examined. We studied all open reading frames (ORFs of at least 30 codons from the genomes of 27 sequenced bacterial strains. We grouped the potential peptide sequences encoded from the ORFs by forming Clusters of Orthologous Groups (COGs. We used this grouping in order to find homologous relationships that would not be distinguishable from noise when using simple BLAST searches. Although COG analysis was initially developed to group annotated genes, we applied it to the task of grouping anonymous DNA sequences that may encode proteins. Results "Mixed COGs" of ORFs (clusters in which some sequences correspond to annotated genes and some do not are attractive targets when seeking errors of gene predicion. Examination of mixed COGs reveals some situations in which genes appear to have been missed in current annotations and a smaller number of regions that appear to have been annotated as gene loci erroneously. This technique can also be used to detect potential pseudogenes or sequencing errors. Our method uses an adjustable parameter for degree of conservation among the studied genomes (stringency. We detail results for one level of stringency at which we found 83 potential genes which had not previously been identified, 60 potential pseudogenes, and 7 sequences with existing gene annotations that are probably incorrect. Conclusion Systematic study of sequence conservation offers a way to improve existing annotations by identifying potentially homologous regions where the annotation of the presence or absence of a gene is inconsistent among genomes.

  15. Aj-rel and Aj-p105, two evolutionary conserved NF-κB homologues in sea cucumber (Apostichopus japonicus) and their involvement in LPS induced immunity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Tingting; Sun, Yongxin; Jin, Liji; Thacker, Philip; Li, Shuying; Xu, Yongping

    2013-01-01

    The nuclear factor κB (NF-κB) has been evolutionary conserved from insects to mammals and plays a major regulatory role in the initiation of physiological responses. In this study, we identified and characterized a primitive and functional NF-κB pathway active in the immune defence of the sea cucumber (Apostichopus japonicus). The ancient NF-κB homologues, Aj-rel and Aj-p105, share numerous signature motifs with their vertebrate orthologues, notably the Rel Homology Domain, Rel Protein Signature DNA Binding Motif, Nuclear Localization Signal and the Ankyrin Repeats for Aj-p105. Phylogenetic analyses indicate that these homologues belong to class I and II of NF-κB respectively. We examined the dimerization of Aj-rel and Aj-p105 and our results demonstrated that Aj-rel forms heterdimers with Aj-p105 and the degradation product of Aj-p105, namely Aj-p50. We further observed that LPS stimulation led to the degradation of Aj-p105 and the nuclear translocation of Aj-rel and Aj-p50. Taken together, our data indicate that the NF-κB signaling cascade is active in sea cucumber and plays a crucial role in regulating their immune defence. Our results increase the available information on sea cucumber immunity and provide new information for use in the study of the comparative and evolutionary aspects of immunity. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Towards an evolutionary model of transcription networks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dan Xie

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available DNA evolution models made invaluable contributions to comparative genomics, although it seemed formidable to include non-genomic features into these models. In order to build an evolutionary model of transcription networks (TNs, we had to forfeit the substitution model used in DNA evolution and to start from modeling the evolution of the regulatory relationships. We present a quantitative evolutionary model of TNs, subjecting the phylogenetic distance and the evolutionary changes of cis-regulatory sequence, gene expression and network structure to one probabilistic framework. Using the genome sequences and gene expression data from multiple species, this model can predict regulatory relationships between a transcription factor (TF and its target genes in all species, and thus identify TN re-wiring events. Applying this model to analyze the pre-implantation development of three mammalian species, we identified the conserved and re-wired components of the TNs downstream to a set of TFs including Oct4, Gata3/4/6, cMyc and nMyc. Evolutionary events on the DNA sequence that led to turnover of TF binding sites were identified, including a birth of an Oct4 binding site by a 2nt deletion. In contrast to recent reports of large interspecies differences of TF binding sites and gene expression patterns, the interspecies difference in TF-target relationship is much smaller. The data showed increasing conservation levels from genomic sequences to TF-DNA interaction, gene expression, TN, and finally to morphology, suggesting that evolutionary changes are larger at molecular levels and smaller at functional levels. The data also showed that evolutionarily older TFs are more likely to have conserved target genes, whereas younger TFs tend to have larger re-wiring rates.

  17. Seminal-type ribonuclease genes in ruminants, sequence conservation without protein expression?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleineidam, R G; Jekel, P A; Beintema, J J; Situmorang, P

    1999-04-29

    Bovine seminal ribonuclease (BS-RNase) is an interesting enzyme both for functional and structural reasons. The enzyme is the product of a gene duplication that occurred in an ancestral ruminant. It is possible to demonstrate the presence of seminal-type genes in all other investigated ruminant species, but they are not expressed and show features of pseudogenes. In this paper we report the determination of two pancreatic and one seminal-type ribonuclease gene sequences of swamp-type water buffalo (Bubalus bubalis). The two pancreatic sequences encode proteins with identical amino acid sequences as previously determined for the enzymes isolated from swamp-type and river-type water buffalo, respectively. The seminal-type sequence has no pseudogene features and codes for an enzyme with no unusual features compared with the active bovine enzyme, except for the replacement of one of the cysteines which takes part in the two intersubunit disulfide bridges. However, Western blotting demonstrates the presence of only small amounts of the pancreatic enzymes in water buffalo semen, suggesting that also in this species the seminal-type sequence is not expressed. But it is still possible that the gene is expressed somewhere else in the body or during development. Reconstruction of seminal-type ribonuclease sequences in ancestors of Bovinae and Bovidae indicates no serious abnormalities in the encoded proteins and leads us to the hypothesis that the ruminant seminal-type ribonuclease gene has not come to expression during most of its evolutionary history, but did not exhibit a high evolutionary rate that is generally observed in pseudogenes.

  18. Divergence patterns of genic copy number variation in natural populations of the house mouse (Mus musculus domesticus) reveal three conserved genes with major population-specific expansions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pezer, Željka; Harr, Bettina; Teschke, Meike; Babiker, Hiba; Tautz, Diethard

    2015-08-01

    Copy number variation represents a major source of genetic divergence, yet the evolutionary dynamics of genic copy number variation in natural populations during differentiation and adaptation remain unclear. We applied a read depth approach to genome resequencing data to detect copy number variants (CNVs) ≥1 kb in wild-caught mice belonging to four populations of Mus musculus domesticus. We complemented the bioinformatics analyses with experimental validation using droplet digital PCR. The specific focus of our analysis is CNVs that include complete genes, as these CNVs could be expected to contribute most directly to evolutionary divergence. In total, 1863 transcription units appear to be completely encompassed within CNVs in at least one individual when compared to the reference assembly. Further, 179 of these CNVs show population-specific copy number differences, and 325 are subject to complete deletion in multiple individuals. Among the most copy-number variable genes are three highly conserved genes that encode the splicing factor CWC22, the spindle protein SFI1, and the Holliday junction recognition protein HJURP. These genes exhibit population-specific expansion patterns that suggest involvement in local adaptations. We found that genes that overlap with large segmental duplications are generally more copy-number variable. These genes encode proteins that are relevant for environmental and behavioral interactions, such as vomeronasal and olfactory receptors, as well as major urinary proteins and several proteins of unknown function. The overall analysis shows that genic CNVs contribute more to population differentiation in mice than in humans and may promote and speed up population divergence. © 2015 Pezer et al.; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.

  19. Conservation, Divergence, and Genome-Wide Distribution of PAL and POX A Gene Families in Plants

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    H. C. Rawal

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Genome-wide identification and phylogenetic and syntenic comparison were performed for the genes responsible for phenylalanine ammonia lyase (PAL and peroxidase A (POX A enzymes in nine plant species representing very diverse groups like legumes (Glycine max and Medicago truncatula, fruits (Vitis vinifera, cereals (Sorghum bicolor, Zea mays, and Oryza sativa, trees (Populus trichocarpa, and model dicot (Arabidopsis thaliana and monocot (Brachypodium distachyon species. A total of 87 and 1045 genes in PAL and POX A gene families, respectively, have been identified in these species. The phylogenetic and syntenic comparison along with motif distributions shows a high degree of conservation of PAL genes, suggesting that these genes may predate monocot/eudicot divergence. The POX A family genes, present in clusters at the subtelomeric regions of chromosomes, might be evolving and expanding with higher rate than the PAL gene family. Our analysis showed that during the expansion of POX A gene family, many groups and subgroups have evolved, resulting in a high level of functional divergence among monocots and dicots. These results will act as a first step toward the understanding of monocot/eudicot evolution and functional characterization of these gene families in the future.

  20. Clusters of conserved beta cell marker genes for assessment of beta cell phenotype

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Martens, Geert A; Jiang, Lei; Hellemans, Karine H

    2011-01-01

    The aim of this study was to establish a gene expression blueprint of pancreatic beta cells conserved from rodents to humans and to evaluate its applicability to assess shifts in the beta cell differentiated state. Genome-wide mRNA expression profiles of isolated beta cells were compared to those...... of a large panel of other tissue and cell types, and transcripts with beta cell-abundant and -selective expression were identified. Iteration of this analysis in mouse, rat and human tissues generated a panel of conserved beta cell biomarkers. This panel was then used to compare isolated versus laser capture...... microdissected beta cells, monitor adaptations of the beta cell phenotype to fasting, and retrieve possible conserved transcriptional regulators....

  1. Analysis of the mitochondrial COI gene and its informative potential for evolutionary inferences in the families Coreidae and Pentatomidae (Heteroptera).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Souza, H V; Marchesin, S R C; Itoyama, M M

    2016-02-05

    The mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 (COI) gene is one of the most popular markers used for molecular systematics. Fragments of this gene are often used to infer phylogenies, particularly the region near the 5'-end, which is used by the DNA Barcoding Consortium. With a growing number of sequences being deposited in the DNA barcoding database, there is an urgent need to understand the evolution of this gene and its evolutionary relationship among species; it is also important to analyze the informative potential of the gene for phylogenetic inferences for each group used. In this study, the COI gene was divided into three distinct regions: a 5'-region, a central region, and a 3'-region. The nucleotide composition of these regions was analyzed, and their potential for making informative phylogenetic inferences using species in the families Coreidae and Pentatomidae (Heteroptera) was assessed. It was found that the same region in the COI gene may present different behaviors for each family analyzed, and that using additional regions from the same gene may even prejudice the analysis.

  2. The effect of multiple evolutionary selections on synonymous codon usage of genes in the Mycoplasma bovis genome.

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    Jian-hua Zhou

    Full Text Available Mycoplasma bovis is a major pathogen causing arthritis, respiratory disease and mastitis in cattle. A better understanding of its genetic features and evolution might represent evidences of surviving host environments. In this study, multiple factors influencing synonymous codon usage patterns in M. bovis (three strains' genomes were analyzed. The overall nucleotide content of genes in the M. bovis genome is AT-rich. Although the G and C contents at the third codon position of genes in the leading strand differ from those in the lagging strand (p<0.05, the 59 synonymous codon usage patterns of genes in the leading strand are highly similar to those in the lagging strand. The over-represented codons and the under-represented codons were identified. A comparison of the synonymous codon usage pattern of M. bovis and cattle (susceptible host indicated the independent formation of synonymous codon usage of M. bovis. Principal component analysis revealed that (i strand-specific mutational bias fails to affect the synonymous codon usage pattern in the leading and lagging strands, (ii mutation pressure from nucleotide content plays a role in shaping the overall codon usage, and (iii the major trend of synonymous codon usage has a significant correlation with the gene expression level that is estimated by the codon adaptation index. The plot of the effective number of codons against the G+C content at the third codon position also reveals that mutation pressure undoubtedly contributes to the synonymous codon usage pattern of M. bovis. Additionally, the formation of the overall codon usage is determined by certain evolutionary selections for gene function classification (30S protein, 50S protein, transposase, membrane protein, and lipoprotein and translation elongation region of genes in M. bovis. The information could be helpful in further investigations of evolutionary mechanisms of the Mycoplasma family and heterologous expression of its functionally

  3. The Effect of Multiple Evolutionary Selections on Synonymous Codon Usage of Genes in the Mycoplasma bovis Genome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Jian-hua; Ding, Yao-zhong; He, Ying; Chu, Yue-feng; Zhao, Ping; Ma, Li-ya; Wang, Xin-jun; Li, Xue-rui; Liu, Yong-sheng

    2014-01-01

    Mycoplasma bovis is a major pathogen causing arthritis, respiratory disease and mastitis in cattle. A better understanding of its genetic features and evolution might represent evidences of surviving host environments. In this study, multiple factors influencing synonymous codon usage patterns in M. bovis (three strains’ genomes) were analyzed. The overall nucleotide content of genes in the M. bovis genome is AT-rich. Although the G and C contents at the third codon position of genes in the leading strand differ from those in the lagging strand (p<0.05), the 59 synonymous codon usage patterns of genes in the leading strand are highly similar to those in the lagging strand. The over-represented codons and the under-represented codons were identified. A comparison of the synonymous codon usage pattern of M. bovis and cattle (susceptible host) indicated the independent formation of synonymous codon usage of M. bovis. Principal component analysis revealed that (i) strand-specific mutational bias fails to affect the synonymous codon usage pattern in the leading and lagging strands, (ii) mutation pressure from nucleotide content plays a role in shaping the overall codon usage, and (iii) the major trend of synonymous codon usage has a significant correlation with the gene expression level that is estimated by the codon adaptation index. The plot of the effective number of codons against the G+C content at the third codon position also reveals that mutation pressure undoubtedly contributes to the synonymous codon usage pattern of M. bovis. Additionally, the formation of the overall codon usage is determined by certain evolutionary selections for gene function classification (30S protein, 50S protein, transposase, membrane protein, and lipoprotein) and translation elongation region of genes in M. bovis. The information could be helpful in further investigations of evolutionary mechanisms of the Mycoplasma family and heterologous expression of its functionally important

  4. Resolution of deep angiosperm phylogeny using conserved nuclear genes and estimates of early divergence times.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeng, Liping; Zhang, Qiang; Sun, Renran; Kong, Hongzhi; Zhang, Ning; Ma, Hong

    2014-09-24

    Angiosperms are the most successful plants and support human livelihood and ecosystems. Angiosperm phylogeny is the foundation of studies of gene function and phenotypic evolution, divergence time estimation and biogeography. The relationship of the five divergent groups of the Mesangiospermae (~99.95% of extant angiosperms) remains uncertain, with multiple hypotheses reported in the literature. Here transcriptome data sets are obtained from 26 species lacking sequenced genomes, representing each of the five groups: eudicots, monocots, magnoliids, Chloranthaceae and Ceratophyllaceae. Phylogenetic analyses using 59 carefully selected low-copy nuclear genes resulted in highly supported relationships: sisterhood of eudicots and a clade containing Chloranthaceae and Ceratophyllaceae, with magnoliids being the next sister group, followed by monocots. Our topology allows a re-examination of the evolutionary patterns of 110 morphological characters. The molecular clock estimates of Mesangiospermae diversification during the late to middle Jurassic correspond well to the origins of some insects, which may have been a factor facilitating early angiosperm radiation.

  5. Evolutionary analysis of TLR9 genes reveals the positive selection of extant teleosts in Perciformes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Zhihuang; Sun, Yuena; Wang, Rixin; Xu, Tianjun

    2013-08-01

    The innate immune system can recognize non-self through pattern recognition receptors. Toll-like receptors were the best-known members of these receptors, and they could sense, recognize, and bind pathogen-associated molecular patterns. TLRs played an important role in innate immune system and were conserved in both invertebrate and vertebrate lineages. Thereinto, TLR9 could detect unmethylated CpG motifs in dsDNA and was expected to undergo coevolution with its microbial ligands. It was known that aquatic and terrestrial organisms dwelled in different environments which contained different pathogens, and they had to adapt to their local environmental conditions. Therefore, we collected TLR9 genes from invertebrate to vertebrate to further explore whether the huge differences between aquatic and terrestrial environments affected the TLR9s evolution between aquatic and terrestrial organisms. Molecular evolution analysis detected positively selected sites in the ancestral lineages of vertebrates, teleosts, and Perciformes but not in the ancestral lineage of mammals. In PAML, site model revealed that extant mammalian TLR9 genes underwent positive selection. However, the positive selection of extant teleosts appeared primarily in Perciformes in which there were 14 positively selected sites. Among these sites, two of them were located on the amino acid insertions of the leucine-rich repeats which could create DNA binding sites, three were found on the convex surface which might possibly affect the flexibility of the TLR solenoids, and six were located on the β-face of concave surface which contained the ligand-binding sites of the TLR solenoids. In other ML methods, we also found three sites under selection that coincided with the codons identified by M8 and these sites were all located in LRRs. The diverse aquatic and terrestrial environments might possess different pathogens to make the living organisms adapt to their local environmental conditions. The positive

  6. Restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis shows that the hippuricase gene of Campylobacter jejuni is highly conserved.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slater, E R; Owen, R J

    1997-10-01

    A 1151-bp amplicon containing the hippuricase (hipO) gene was obtained from 118 strains of Campylobacter jejuni and double-digested with AluI and DdeI to give five different PCR-RFLP patterns. Most strains had the six-banded profile predicted from sequence data. Lack of polymorphisms within the hipO gene indicated it was highly conserved amongst strains of Camp.jejuni, and the RFLP analysis provided only low discrimination as an epidemiological typing method. Detection of hipO by PCR provided a useful test for confirmatory identification of Camp. jejuni.

  7. The Mdm2 and p53 genes are conserved in the Arachnids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lane, David P; Cheok, Chit Fang; Brown, Christopher J; Madhumalar, Arumugam; Ghadessy, Farid J; Verma, Chandra

    2010-02-15

    The p53 protein and its negative regulator the ubiquitin E3 ligase Mdm2 have been shown to be conserved from the T. adhaerens to man. In common with D. melanogaster and C. elegans, there is a single copy of the p53 gene in T. adhaerens, while in the vertebrates three p53-like genes can be found: p53, p63 and p73. The Mdm2 gene is not present within the fully sequenced and highly annotated genomes of C. elegans and D. melanogaster. However, it is present in Placazoanand the presence of multiple distinct p53 genes in the Sea anemone N. vectensis led us to examine the genomes of other phyla for p53 and Mdm2-like genes. We report here the discovery of an Mdm2-like gene and two distinct p53-like genes in the Arachnid Ioxodes scapularis (Northern Deer Tick). The two predicted Deer Tick p53 proteins are much more highly related to the human p53 protein in sequence than are the fruit fly and nematode proteins. One of the Deer Tick genes encodes a p53 protein that is initiated within the DNA binding domain of p53 and shows remarkable homology to the newly described N-terminally truncated delta isoforms of human and zebrafish p53.

  8. CORECLUST: identification of the conserved CRM grammar together with prediction of gene regulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nikulova, Anna A; Favorov, Alexander V; Sutormin, Roman A; Makeev, Vsevolod J; Mironov, Andrey A

    2012-07-01

    Identification of transcriptional regulatory regions and tracing their internal organization are important for understanding the eukaryotic cell machinery. Cis-regulatory modules (CRMs) of higher eukaryotes are believed to possess a regulatory 'grammar', or preferred arrangement of binding sites, that is crucial for proper regulation and thus tends to be evolutionarily conserved. Here, we present a method CORECLUST (COnservative REgulatory CLUster STructure) that predicts CRMs based on a set of positional weight matrices. Given regulatory regions of orthologous and/or co-regulated genes, CORECLUST constructs a CRM model by revealing the conserved rules that describe the relative location of binding sites. The constructed model may be consequently used for the genome-wide prediction of similar CRMs, and thus detection of co-regulated genes, and for the investigation of the regulatory grammar of the system. Compared with related methods, CORECLUST shows better performance at identification of CRMs conferring muscle-specific gene expression in vertebrates and early-developmental CRMs in Drosophila.

  9. What is a gene? From molecules to metaphysics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rolston, Holmes

    2006-01-01

    Mendelian genes have become molecular genes, with increasing puzzlement about locating them, due to increasing complexity in genomic webworks. Genome science finds modular and conserved units of inheritance, identified as homologous genes. Such genes are cybernetic, transmitting information over generations; this too requires multi-leveled analysis, from DNA transcription to development and reproduction of the whole organism. Genes are conserved; genes are also dynamic and creative in evolutionary speciation-most remarkably producing humans capable of wondering about what genes are.

  10. Phylogeny and phylogeography of functional genes shared among seven terrestrial subsurface metagenomes reveal N-cycling and microbial evolutionary relationships

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maggie CY Lau

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Comparative studies on community phylogenetics and phylogeography of microorganisms living in extreme environments are rare. Terrestrial subsurface habitats are valuable for studying microbial biogeographical patterns due to their isolation and the restricted dispersal mechanisms. Since the taxonomic identity of a microorganism does not always correspond well with its functional role in a particular community, the use of taxonomic assignments or patterns may give limited inference on how microbial functions are affected by historical, geographical and environmental factors. With seven metagenomic libraries generated from fracture water samples collected from five South African mines, this study was carried out to (1 screen for ubiquitous functions or pathways of biogeochemical cycling of CH4, S and N; (2 to characterize the biodiversity represented by the common functional genes; (3 to investigate the subsurface biogeography as revealed by this subset of genes; and (4 to explore the possibility of using metagenomic data for evolutionary study. The ubiquitous functional genes are NarV, NPD, PAP reductase, NifH, NifD, NifK, NifE and NifN genes. Although these 8 common functional genes were taxonomically and phylogenetically diverse and distinct from each other, the dissimilarity between samples did not correlate strongly with either geographical, environmental or residence time of the water. Por genes homologous to those of Thermodesulfovibrio yellowstonii detected in all metagenomes were deep lineages of Nitrospirae, suggesting that subsurface habitats have preserved ancestral genetic signatures that inform the study of the origin and evolution of prokaryotes.

  11. Phylogeography of the endangered rosewood Dalbergia nigra (Fabaceae): insights into the evolutionary history and conservation of the Brazilian Atlantic Forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribeiro, R A; Lemos-Filho, J P; Ramos, A C S; Lovato, M B

    2011-01-01

    The Brazilian rosewood (Dalbergia nigra) is an endangered tree endemic to the central Brazilian Atlantic Forest, one of the world's most threatened biomes. The population diversity, phylogeographic structure and demographic history of this species were investigated using the variation in the chloroplast DNA (cpDNA) sequences of 185 individuals from 19 populations along the geographical range of the species. Fifteen haplotypes were detected in the analysis of 1297 bp from two non-coding sequences, trnV-trnM and trnL. We identified a strong genetic structure (FST=0.62, Pclimatic changes in the central part of the Atlantic forest, with cycles of forest expansion and contraction, may have led to repeated vicariance events, resulting in the genetic differentiation of these groups. Based on comparisons among the populations of large reserves and small, disturbed fragments of the same phylogeographic group, we also found evidence of recent anthropogenic effects on genetic diversity. The results were also analysed with the aim of contributing to the conservation of D. nigra. We suggest that the three phylogeographic groups could be considered as three distinct management units. Based on the genetic diversity and uniqueness of the populations, we also indicate priority areas for conservation. PMID:20517347

  12. Recovering the evolutionary history of crowned pigeons (Columbidae: Goura): Implications for the biogeography and conservation of New Guinean lowland birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruxaux, Jade; Gabrielli, Maëva; Ashari, Hidayat; Prŷs-Jones, Robert; Joseph, Leo; Milá, Borja; Besnard, Guillaume; Thébaud, Christophe

    2017-12-01

    Assessing the relative contributions of immigration and diversification into the buildup of species diversity is key to understanding the role of historical processes in driving biogeographical and diversification patterns in species-rich regions. Here, we investigated how colonization, in situ speciation, and extinction history may have generated the present-day distribution and diversity of Goura crowned pigeons (Columbidae), a group of large forest-dwelling pigeons comprising four recognized species that are all endemic to New Guinea. We used a comprehensive geographical and taxonomic sampling based mostly on historical museum samples, and shallow shotgun sequencing, to generate complete mitogenomes, nuclear ribosomal clusters and independent nuclear conserved DNA elements. We used these datasets independently to reconstruct molecular phylogenies. Divergence time estimates were obtained using mitochondrial data only. All analyses revealed similar genetic divisions within the genus Goura and recovered as monophyletic groups the four species currently recognized, providing support for recent taxonomic changes based on differences in plumage characters. These four species are grouped into two pairs of strongly supported sister species, which were previously not recognized as close relatives: Goura sclaterii with Goura cristata, and Goura victoria with Goura scheepmakeri. While the geographical origin of the Goura lineage remains elusive, the crown age of 5.73 Ma is consistent with present-day species diversity being the result of a recent diversification within New Guinea. Although the orogeny of New Guinea's central cordillera must have played a role in driving diversification in Goura, cross-barrier dispersal seems more likely than vicariance to explain the speciation events having led to the four current species. Our results also have important conservation implications. Future assessments of the conservation status of Goura species should consider threat

  13. The endocrine system controlling sexual reproduction in animals: Part of the evolutionary ancient but well conserved immune system?

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Loof, Arnold; Schoofs, Liliane; Huybrechts, Roger

    2016-01-15

    Drastic changes in hormone titers, in particular of steroid hormones, are intuitively interpreted as necessary and beneficial for optimal functioning of animals. Peaks in progesterone- and estradiol titers that accompany the estrus cycle in female vertebrates as well as in ecdysteroids at each molt and during metamorphosis of holometabolous insects are prominent examples. A recent analysis of insect metamorphosis yielded the view that, in general, a sharp rise in sex steroid hormone titer signals that somewhere in the body some tissue(s) is undergoing programmed cell death/apoptosis. Increased steroid production is part of this process. Typical examples are ovarian follicle cells in female vertebrates and invertebrates and the prothoracic gland cells, the main production site of ecdysteroids in larval insects. A duality emerges: programmed cell death-apoptosis is deleterious at the cellular level, but it may yield beneficial effects at the organismal level. Reconciling both opposites requires reevaluating the probable evolutionary origin and role of peptidic brain hormones that direct steroid hormone synthesis. Do e.g. Luteinizing Hormone in vertebrates and Prothoracicotropic Hormone (PTTH: acting through the Torso receptor) in insects still retain an ancient role as toxins in the early immune system? Does the functional link of some neuropeptides with Ca(2+)-induced apoptosis make sense in endocrine archeology? The endocrine system as a remnant of the ancient immune system is undoubtedly counterintuitive. Yet, we will argue that such paradigm enables the logical framing of many aspects, the endocrine one inclusive of both male and female reproductive physiology. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Interspecies variation reveals a conserved repressor of alpha-specific genes in Saccharomyces yeasts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zill, Oliver A; Rine, Jasper

    2008-06-15

    The mating-type determination circuit in Saccharomyces yeast serves as a classic paradigm for the genetic control of cell type in all eukaryotes. Using comparative genetics, we discovered a central and conserved, yet previously undetected, component of this genetic circuit: active repression of alpha-specific genes in a cells. Upon inactivation of the SUM1 gene in Saccharomyces bayanus, a close relative of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, a cells acquired mating characteristics of alpha cells and displayed autocrine activation of their mating response pathway. Sum1 protein bound to the promoters of alpha-specific genes, repressing their transcription. In contrast to the standard model, alpha1 was important but not required for alpha-specific gene activation and mating of alpha cells in the absence of Sum1. Neither Sum1 protein expression, nor its association with target promoters was mating-type-regulated. Thus, the alpha1/Mcm1 coactivators did not overcome repression by occluding Sum1 binding to DNA. Surprisingly, the mating-type regulatory function of Sum1 was conserved in S. cerevisiae. We suggest that a comprehensive understanding of some genetic pathways may be best attained through the expanded phenotypic space provided by study of those pathways in multiple related organisms.

  15. Evolutionary anthropology and genes: investigating the genetics of human evolution from excavated skeletal remains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anastasiou, Evilena; Mitchell, Piers D

    2013-10-01

    The development of molecular tools for the extraction, analysis and interpretation of DNA from the remains of ancient organisms (paleogenetics) has revolutionised a range of disciplines as diverse as the fields of human evolution, bioarchaeology, epidemiology, microbiology, taxonomy and population genetics. The paper draws attention to some of the challenges associated with the extraction and interpretation of ancient DNA from archaeological material, and then reviews the influence of paleogenetics on the field of human evolution. It discusses the main contributions of molecular studies to reconstructing the evolutionary and phylogenetic relationships between extinct hominins (human ancestors) and anatomically modern humans. It also explores the evidence for evolutionary changes in the genetic structure of anatomically modern humans in recent millennia. This breadth of research has led to discoveries that would never have been possible using traditional approaches to human evolution. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Identification of the novel penicillin biosynthesis gene aatB of Aspergillus nidulans and its putative evolutionary relationship to this fungal secondary metabolism gene cluster.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spröte, Petra; Hynes, Michael J; Hortschansky, Peter; Shelest, Ekaterina; Scharf, Daniel H; Wolke, Sandra M; Brakhage, Axel A

    2008-10-01

    The final step of penicillin biosynthesis in the filamentous fungus Aspergillus nidulans is catalysed by isopenicillin N acyltransferase encoded by the aatA gene. Because there is no bacterial homologue, its evolutionary origin remained obscure. As shown here,disruption of aatA still enabled penicillin production. Genome mining led to the discovery of the aatB gene(AN6775.3) which has a similar structure and expression pattern as aatA. Disruption of aatB resulted in a reduced penicillin titre. Surface plasmon resonance analysis and Northern blot analysis indicated that the promoters of both aatA and aatB are bound and regulated by the same transcription factors AnCF and AnBH1f. In contrast to aatA, aatB does not encode a peroxisomal targeting signal (PTS1). Overexpression of a mutated aatB(PTS1) gene in an aatA-disruption strain(leading to peroxisomal localization of AatB)increased the penicillin titre more than overexpression of the wild-type aatB. Homologues of aatA are exclusively part of the penicillin biosynthesis gene cluster,whereas aatB homologues also exist in non-producing fungi. Our findings suggest that aatB is a paralogue of aatA. They extend the model of evolution of the penicillin biosynthesis gene cluster by recruitment of a biosynthesis gene and its cis-regulatory sites upon gene duplication.

  17. Evolutionary trends in the distylous genus Pulmonaria (Boraginaceae): Evidence of ancient hybridization and current interspecific gene flow.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meeus, Sofie; Janssens, Steven; Helsen, Kenny; Jacquemyn, Hans

    2016-05-01

    The distylous genus Pulmonaria contains approximately 18 species that are widely distributed across Eurasia. Previous studies have shown that species delimitation in the genus is problematic, but have not yet explored the evolutionary history of the genus. Premating reproductive barriers between European species appear to be weak, as several species have strongly overlapping distribution areas, flower at the same time and share the same pollinators, suggesting that hybridization may have contributed to the evolutionary history of Pulmonaria. To test this hypothesis, phylogenetic analyses of nuclear ITS and plastid data (rps16, trnH-psbA, rpl16) from 48 allopatric and four sympatric populations were performed to (1) provide a molecular phylogeny for nine of the most common Pulmonaria species in Europe, (2) detect current and ancient hybridization events, and (3) assess the contribution of hybridization versus incomplete lineage sorting to the inferred phylogenetic patterns. Our results showed that gene trees displayed widespread, strongly supported incongruence associated with the conflicting position of hybrid samples rather than incomplete lineage sorting. Evidence was found of different degrees of hybridization, ranging from current interspecific gene flow at secondary contact zones to introgression at the population level and at least one event of hybrid speciation. Overall, these results suggest that hybridization and introgression were - and could still be - important processes affecting speciation in the genus Pulmonaria. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Evolutionary redesign of the Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua L.) Toll-like receptor repertoire by gene losses and expansions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solbakken, Monica H; Tørresen, Ole K; Nederbragt, Alexander J; Seppola, Marit; Gregers, Tone F; Jakobsen, Kjetill S; Jentoft, Sissel

    2016-04-29

    Genome sequencing of the teleost Atlantic cod demonstrated loss of the Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC) class II, an extreme gene expansion of MHC class I and gene expansions and losses in the innate pattern recognition receptor (PRR) family of Toll-like receptors (TLR). In a comparative genomic setting, using an improved version of the genome, we characterize PRRs in Atlantic cod with emphasis on TLRs demonstrating the loss of TLR1/6, TLR2 and TLR5 and expansion of TLR7, TLR8, TLR9, TLR22 and TLR25. We find that Atlantic cod TLR expansions are strongly influenced by diversifying selection likely to increase the detectable ligand repertoire through neo- and subfunctionalization. Using RNAseq we find that Atlantic cod TLRs display likely tissue or developmental stage-specific expression patterns. In a broader perspective, a comprehensive vertebrate TLR phylogeny reveals that the Atlantic cod TLR repertoire is extreme with regards to losses and expansions compared to other teleosts. In addition we identify a substantial shift in TLR repertoires following the evolutionary transition from an aquatic vertebrate (fish) to a terrestrial (tetrapod) life style. Collectively, our findings provide new insight into the function and evolution of TLRs in Atlantic cod as well as the evolutionary history of vertebrate innate immunity.

  19. Evolutionary changes of multiple visual pigment genes in the complete genome of Pacific bluefin tuna

    OpenAIRE

    Nakamura, Yoji; Mori, Kazuki; Saitoh, Kenji; Oshima, Kenshiro; Mekuchi, Miyuki; Sugaya, Takuma; Shigenobu, Yuya; Ojima, Nobuhiko; Muta, Shigeru; Fujiwara, Atushi; Yasuike, Motoshige; Oohara, Ichiro; Hirakawa, Hideki; Chowdhury, Vishwajit Sur; Kobayashi, Takanori

    2013-01-01

    Tunas are migratory fishes in offshore habitats and top predators with unique features. Despite their ecological importance and high market values, the open-ocean lifestyle of tuna, in which effective sensing systems such as color vision are required for capture of prey, has been poorly understood. To elucidate the genetic and evolutionary basis of optic adaptation of tuna, we determined the genome sequence of the Pacific bluefin tuna (Thunnus orientalis), using next-generation sequencing tec...

  20. New insights into the evolutionary origins of the recombination-activating gene proteins and V(D)J recombination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carmona, Lina Marcela; Schatz, David G

    2017-06-01

    The adaptive immune system of jawed vertebrates relies on V(D)J recombination as one of the main processes to generate the diverse array of receptors necessary for the recognition of a wide range of pathogens. The DNA cleavage reaction necessary for the assembly of the antigen receptor genes from an array of potential gene segments is mediated by the recombination-activating gene proteins RAG1 and RAG2. The RAG proteins have been proposed to originate from a transposable element (TE) as they share mechanistic and structural similarities with several families of transposases and are themselves capable of mediating transposition. A number of RAG-like proteins and TEs with sequence similarity to RAG1 and RAG2 have been identified, but only recently has their function begun to be characterized, revealing mechanistic links to the vertebrate RAGs. Of particular significance is the discovery of ProtoRAG, a transposon superfamily found in the genome of the basal chordate amphioxus. ProtoRAG has many of the sequence and mechanistic features predicted for the ancestral RAG transposon and is likely to be an evolutionary relative of RAG1 and RAG2. In addition, early observations suggesting that RAG1 is able to mediate V(D)J recombination in the absence of RAG2 have been confirmed, implying independent evolutionary origins for the two RAG genes. Here, recent progress in identifying and characterizing RAG-like proteins and the TEs that encode them is summarized and a refined model for the evolution of V(D)J recombination and the RAG proteins is presented. © 2016 Federation of European Biochemical Societies.

  1. Structural, expression and evolutionary analysis of the non-specific phospholipase C gene family in Gossypium hirsutum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Jiuling; Zhou, Yonghe; Zhang, Juren; Zhang, Kewei

    2017-12-19

    Nonspecific phospholipase C (NPC), which belongs to a phospholipase C subtype, is a class of phospholipases that hydrolyzes the primary membrane phospholipids, such as phosphatidylcholine, to yield sn-1, 2-diacylglycerol and a phosphor