Sample records for gene transfer events

  1. Detecting rare gene transfer events in bacterial populations

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    Kaare Magne Nielsen


    Full Text Available Horizontal gene transfer (HGT enables bacteria to access, share, and recombine genetic variation, resulting in genetic diversity that cannot be obtained through mutational processes alone. In most cases, the observation of evolutionary successful HGT events relies on the outcome of initially rare events that lead to novel functions in the new host, and that exhibit a positive effect on host fitness. Conversely, the large majority of HGT events occurring in bacterial populations will go undetected due to lack of replication success of transformants. Moreover, other HGT events that would be highly beneficial to new hosts can fail to ensue due to lack of physical proximity to the donor organism, lack of a suitable gene transfer mechanism, genetic compatibility, and stochasticity in tempo-spatial occurrence. Experimental attempts to detect HGT events in bacterial populations have typically focused on the transformed cells or their immediate offspring. However, rare HGT events occurring in large and structured populations are unlikely to reach relative population sizes that will allow their immediate identification; the exception being the unusually strong positive selection conferred by antibiotics. Most HGT events are not expected to alter the likelihood of host survival to such an extreme extent, and will confer only minor changes in host fitness. Due to the large population sizes of bacteria and the time scales involved, the process and outcome of HGT are often not amenable to experimental investigation. Population genetic modeling of the growth dynamics of bacteria with differing HGT rates and resulting fitness changes is therefore necessary to guide sampling design and predict realistic time frames for detection of HGT, as it occurs in laboratory or natural settings. Here we review the key population genetic parameters, consider their complexity and highlight knowledge gaps for further research.

  2. Phylogenetic analyses of cyanobacterial genomes: Quantification of horizontal gene transfer events


    Zhaxybayeva, Olga; Gogarten, J. Peter; Charlebois, Robert L.; Doolittle, W Ford; Papke, R Thane


    Using 1128 protein-coding gene families from 11 completely sequenced cyanobacterial genomes, we attempt to quantify horizontal gene transfer events within cyanobacteria, as well as between cyanobacteria and other phyla. A novel method of detecting and enumerating potential horizontal gene transfer events within a group of organisms based on analyses of “embedded quartets” allows us to identify phylogenetic signal consistent with a plurality of gene families, as well as to delineate cases of c...

  3. Origin of the plant Tm-1-like gene via two independent horizontal transfer events and one gene fusion event. (United States)

    Yang, Zefeng; Liu, Li; Fang, Huimin; Li, Pengcheng; Xu, Shuhui; Cao, Wei; Xu, Chenwu; Huang, Jinling; Zhou, Yong


    The Tomato mosaic virus (ToMV) resistance gene Tm-1 encodes a direct inhibitor of ToMV RNA replication to protect tomato from infection. The plant Tm-1-like (Tm-1L) protein is predicted to contain an uncharacterized N-terminal UPF0261 domain and a C-terminal TIM-barrel signal transduction (TBST) domain. Homologous searches revealed that proteins containing both of these two domains are mainly present in charophyte green algae and land plants but absent from glaucophytes, red algae and chlorophyte green algae. Although Tm-1 homologs are widely present in bacteria, archaea and fungi, UPF0261- and TBST-domain-containing proteins are generally encoded by different genes in these linages. A co-evolution analysis also suggested a putative interaction between UPF0261- and TBST-domain-containing proteins. Phylogenetic analyses based on homologs of these two domains revealed that plants have acquired UPF0261- and TBST-domain-encoding genes through two independent horizontal gene transfer (HGT) events before the origin of land plants from charophytes. Subsequently, gene fusion occurred between these two horizontally acquired genes and resulted in the origin of the Tm-1L gene in streptophytes. Our results demonstrate a novel evolutionary mechanism through which the recipient organism may acquire genes with functional interaction through two different HGT events and further fuse them into one functional gene.

  4. Rare Events of Intragenus and Intraspecies Horizontal Transfer of the 16S rRNA Gene. (United States)

    Tian, Ren-Mao; Cai, Lin; Zhang, Wei-Peng; Cao, Hui-Luo; Qian, Pei-Yuan


    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) of operational genes has been widely reported in prokaryotic organisms. However, informational genes such as those involved in transcription and translation processes are very difficult to be horizontally transferred, as described by Woese's complexity hypothesis. Here, we analyzed all of the completed prokaryotic genome sequences (2,143 genomes) in the NCBI (National Center for Biotechnology Information) database, scanned for genomes with high intragenomic heterogeneity of 16S rRNA gene copies, and explored potential HGT events of ribosomal RNA genes based on the phylogeny, genomic organization, and secondary structures of the ribosomal RNA genes. Our results revealed 28 genomes with relatively high intragenomic heterogeneity of multiple 16S rRNA gene copies (lowest pairwise identity 16S rRNA gene only occurred at intragenus or intraspecies levels, which is quite different from the HGT of operational genes. Our results improve our understanding regarding the exchange of informational genes.

  5. A new computational method for the detection of horizontal gene transfer events. (United States)

    Tsirigos, Aristotelis; Rigoutsos, Isidore


    In recent years, the increase in the amounts of available genomic data has made it easier to appreciate the extent by which organisms increase their genetic diversity through horizontally transferred genetic material. Such transfers have the potential to give rise to extremely dynamic genomes where a significant proportion of their coding DNA has been contributed by external sources. Because of the impact of these horizontal transfers on the ecological and pathogenic character of the recipient organisms, methods are continuously sought that are able to computationally determine which of the genes of a given genome are products of transfer events. In this paper, we introduce and discuss a novel computational method for identifying horizontal transfers that relies on a gene's nucleotide composition and obviates the need for knowledge of codon boundaries. In addition to being applicable to individual genes, the method can be easily extended to the case of clusters of horizontally transferred genes. With the help of an extensive and carefully designed set of experiments on 123 archaeal and bacterial genomes, we demonstrate that the new method exhibits significant improvement in sensitivity when compared to previously published approaches. In fact, it achieves an average relative improvement across genomes of between 11 and 41% compared to the Codon Adaptation Index method in distinguishing native from foreign genes. Our method's horizontal gene transfer predictions for 123 microbial genomes are available online at

  6. Horizontal gene transfer events reshape the global landscape of arm race between viruses and homo sapiens. (United States)

    Chen, Dong-Sheng; Wu, Yi-Quan; Zhang, Wei; Jiang, San-Jie; Chen, Shan-Ze


    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) drives the evolution of recipient organism particularly if it provides a novel function which enhances the fitness or its adaption to the environment. Virus-host co-evolution is attractive for studying co-evolutionary processes, since viruses strictly replicate inside of the host cells and thus their evolution is inexorably tangled with host biology. HGT, as a mechanism of co-evolution between human and viruses, has been widely documented, however, the roles HGT play during the interaction between human and viruses are still in their infancy. In this study, we performed a comprehensive analysis on the genes horizontally transferred between viruses and their corresponding human hosts. Our study suggests that the HGT genes in human are predominantly enriched in immune related GO terms while viral HGT genes are tend to be encoded by viruses which promote the invasion of immune system of hosts. Based on our results, it gives us a hint about the evolution trajectory of HGT events. Overall, our study suggests that the HGT between human and viruses are highly relevant to immune interaction and probably reshaped the arm race between hosts and viruses.

  7. DNA bar coding and pyrosequencing to analyze adverse events in therapeutic gene transfer. (United States)

    Wang, Gary P; Garrigue, Alexandrine; Ciuffi, Angela; Ronen, Keshet; Leipzig, Jeremy; Berry, Charles; Lagresle-Peyrou, Chantal; Benjelloun, Fatine; Hacein-Bey-Abina, Salima; Fischer, Alain; Cavazzana-Calvo, Marina; Bushman, Frederic D


    Gene transfer has been used to correct inherited immunodeficiencies, but in several patients integration of therapeutic retroviral vectors activated proto-oncogenes and caused leukemia. Here, we describe improved methods for characterizing integration site populations from gene transfer studies using DNA bar coding and pyrosequencing. We characterized 160,232 integration site sequences in 28 tissue samples from eight mice, where Rag1 or Artemis deficiencies were corrected by introducing the missing gene with gamma-retroviral or lentiviral vectors. The integration sites were characterized for their genomic distributions, including proximity to proto-oncogenes. Several mice harbored abnormal lymphoproliferations following therapy--in these cases, comparison of the location and frequency of isolation of integration sites across multiple tissues helped clarify the contribution of specific proviruses to the adverse events. We also took advantage of the large number of pyrosequencing reads to show that recovery of integration sites can be highly biased by the use of restriction enzyme cleavage of genomic DNA, which is a limitation in all widely used methods, but describe improved approaches that take advantage of the power of pyrosequencing to overcome this problem. The methods described here should allow integration site populations from human gene therapy to be deeply characterized with spatial and temporal resolution.

  8. Genome analysis and gene nblA identification of Microcystis aeruginosa myovirus (MaMV-DC) reveal the evidence for horizontal gene transfer events between cyanomyovirus and host. (United States)

    Ou, Tong; Gao, Xiao-Chan; Li, San-Hua; Zhang, Qi-Ya


    The genome sequence, genetic characterization and nblA gene function of Microcystis aeruginosa myovirus isolated from Lake Dianchi in China (MaMV-DC) have been analysed. The genome DNA is 169 223 bp long, with 170 predicted protein-coding genes (001L–170L) and a tRNA gene. About one-sixth of these genes have homologues in the host cyanobacteria M. aeruginosa. The genome carries a gene homologous to host nblA, which encodes a protein involved in the degradation of cyanobacterial phycobilisome. Its expression during MaMV-DC infection was confirmed by reverse transcriptase PCR and Western blot detection and abundant expression was companied by the significant decline of phycocyanin content and massive release of progeny MaMV-DC. In addition, expressing MaMV-DC nblA reduced the phycocyanin peak and the phycocyanin to chlorophyll ratio in model cyanobacteria. These results confirm that horizontal gene transfer events have occurred between cyanobacterial host and cyanomyovirus and suggest that MaMV-DC carrying host-derived genes (such as 005L, that codes for NblA) is responsible for more efficient expression of cyanophage genes and release of progeny cyanophage. This study provides novel insight into the horizontal gene transfer in cyanophage and the interactions between cyanophage and their host.

  9. Characterizing proteases in an Antarctic Janthinobacterium sp. isolate:Evidence of a protease horizontal gene transfer event

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Cecilia Martinez-Rosales; Juan Jos Marizcurrena; Andrs Iriarte; Natalia Fullana; Hctor Musto; Susana Castro-Sowinski


    We report the isolation of a cold-adapted bacterium belonging to the genus Janthinobacterium (named AU11), from a water sample collected in Lake Uruguay (King George Island, South Shetlands). AU11 (growth between 4°C and 30°C) produces a single cold-active extracellular protease (ExPAU11), differentially expressed at low temperature. ExPAU11 was identified by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-ToF MS) as an alkaline metallo-protease (70% coverage with an extracellular protease of Janthinobacterium sp. PI12), and by protease-inhibitor screening identified as a serine-protease. To the best of our knowledge this is the first experimental evidence of a cold-active extracellular protease produced by Janthinobacterium. Furthermore, we identified a serine-protease gene (named JSP8A) showing 60% identity (98%query coverage) to subtilisin peptidases belonging to the S8 family (S8A subfamily) of many cyanobacteria. A phylogenetic analysis of the JSP8A protease, along with related bacterial protein sequences, confirms that JSP8A clusters with S8A subtilisin sequences from different cyanobacteria, and is clearly separated from S8A bacterial sequences of other phyla (including its own). An analysis of the genomic organization around JSP8A suggests that this protease gene was acquired in an event that duplicated a racemase gene involved in transforming L- to D-amino acids. Our results suggest that AU11 probably acquired this subtilisin-like protease gene by horizontal gene transfer (HGT) from a cyanobacterium. We discuss the relevance of a bacterial protease-HGT in the Antarctic environment in light of this hypothesis.

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

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    Cai Lei


    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.

  11. Molecular evolution of glutamine synthetase II: Phylogenetic evidence of a non-endosymbiotic gene transfer event early in plant evolution

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    Tartar Aurélien


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Glutamine synthetase (GS is essential for ammonium assimilation and the biosynthesis of glutamine. The three GS gene families (GSI, GSII, and GSIII are represented in both prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms. In this study, we examined the evolutionary relationship of GSII from eubacterial and eukaryotic lineages and present robust phylogenetic evidence that GSII was transferred from γ-Proteobacteria (Eubacteria to the Chloroplastida. Results GSII sequences were isolated from four species of green algae (Trebouxiophyceae, and additional green algal (Chlorophyceae and Prasinophytae and streptophyte (Charales, Desmidiales, Bryophyta, Marchantiophyta, Lycopodiophyta and Tracheophyta sequences were obtained from public databases. In Bayesian and maximum likelihood analyses, eubacterial (GSIIB and eukaryotic (GSIIE GSII sequences formed distinct clades. Both GSIIB and GSIIE were found in chlorophytes and early-diverging streptophytes. The GSIIB enzymes from these groups formed a well-supported sister clade with the γ-Proteobacteria, providing evidence that GSIIB in the Chloroplastida arose by horizontal gene transfer (HGT. Bayesian relaxed molecular clock analyses suggest that GSIIB and GSIIE coexisted for an extended period of time but it is unclear whether the proposed HGT happened prior to or after the divergence of the primary endosymbiotic lineages (the Archaeplastida. However, GSIIB genes have not been identified in glaucophytes or red algae, favoring the hypothesis that GSIIB was gained after the divergence of the primary endosymbiotic lineages. Duplicate copies of the GSIIB gene were present in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, Volvox carteri f. nagariensis, and Physcomitrella patens. Both GSIIB proteins in C. reinhardtii and V. carteri f. nagariensis had N-terminal transit sequences, indicating they are targeted to the chloroplast or mitochondrion. In contrast, GSIIB proteins of P. patens lacked transit sequences, suggesting

  12. Lateral gene transfer, rearrangement, reconciliation

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    Patterson, M.D.; Szollosi, G.; Daubin, V.; Tannier, E.


    Background. Models of ancestral gene order reconstruction have progressively integrated different evolutionary patterns and processes such as unequal gene content, gene duplications, and implicitly sequence evolution via reconciled gene trees. These models have so far ignored lateral gene transfer,

  13. Horizontal gene transfer and functional diversification of plant cell wall degrading polygalacturonases: Key events in the evolution of herbivory in beetles. (United States)

    Kirsch, Roy; Gramzow, Lydia; Theißen, Günter; Siegfried, Blair D; Ffrench-Constant, Richard H; Heckel, David G; Pauchet, Yannick


    Plant cell walls are the largest reservoir of organic carbon on earth. To breach and utilize this carbohydrate-rich protective barrier, microbes secrete plant cell wall degrading enzymes (PCWDEs) targeting pectin, cellulose and hemicelluloses. There is a growing body of evidence that genomes of some herbivorous insects also encode PCWDEs, raising questions about their evolutionary origins and functions. Among herbivorous beetles, pectin-degrading polygalacturonases (PGs) are found in the diverse superfamilies Chrysomeloidea (leaf beetles, long-horn beetles) and Curculionoidea (weevils). Here our aim was to test whether these arose from a common ancestor of beetles or via horizontal gene transfer (HGT), and whether PGs kept their ancestral function in degrading pectin or evolved novel functions. Transcriptome data derived from 10 beetle species were screened for PG-encoding sequences and used for phylogenetic comparisons with their bacterial, fungal and plant counterparts. These analyses revealed a large family of PG-encoding genes of Chrysomeloidea and Curculionoidea sharing a common ancestor, most similar to PG genes of ascomycete fungi. In addition, 50 PGs from beetle digestive systems were heterologously expressed and functionally characterized, showing a set of lineage-specific consecutively pectin-degrading enzymes, as well as conserved but enzymatically inactive PG proteins. The evidence indicates that a PG gene was horizontally transferred ∼200 million years ago from an ascomycete fungus to a common ancestor of Chrysomeloidea and Curculionoidea. This has been followed by independent duplications in these two lineages, as well as independent replacement in two sublineages of Chrysomeloidea by two other subsequent HGTs. This origin, leading to subsequent functional diversification of the PG gene family within its new hosts, was a key event promoting the evolution of herbivory in these beetles. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Multiple horizontal gene transfer events and domain fusions have created novel regulatory and metabolic networks in the oomycete genome.

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    Paul Francis Morris

    Full Text Available Complex enzymes with multiple catalytic activities are hypothesized to have evolved from more primitive precursors. Global analysis of the Phytophthora sojae genome using conservative criteria for evaluation of complex proteins identified 273 novel multifunctional proteins that were also conserved in P. ramorum. Each of these proteins contains combinations of protein motifs that are not present in bacterial, plant, animal, or fungal genomes. A subset of these proteins were also identified in the two diatom genomes, but the majority of these proteins have formed after the split between diatoms and oomycetes. Documentation of multiple cases of domain fusions that are common to both oomycetes and diatom genomes lends additional support for the hypothesis that oomycetes and diatoms are monophyletic. Bifunctional proteins that catalyze two steps in a metabolic pathway can be used to infer the interaction of orthologous proteins that exist as separate entities in other genomes. We postulated that the novel multifunctional proteins of oomycetes could function as potential Rosetta Stones to identify interacting proteins of conserved metabolic and regulatory networks in other eukaryotic genomes. However ortholog analysis of each domain within our set of 273 multifunctional proteins against 39 sequenced bacterial and eukaryotic genomes, identified only 18 candidate Rosetta Stone proteins. Thus the majority of multifunctional proteins are not Rosetta Stones, but they may nonetheless be useful in identifying novel metabolic and regulatory networks in oomycetes. Phylogenetic analysis of all the enzymes in three pathways with one or more novel multifunctional proteins was conducted to determine the probable origins of individual enzymes. These analyses revealed multiple examples of horizontal transfer from both bacterial genomes and the photosynthetic endosymbiont in the ancestral genome of Stramenopiles. The complexity of the phylogenetic origins of these

  15. Horizontal gene transfer in silkworm, Bombyx mori

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    Li Bin


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The domesticated silkworm, Bombyx mori, is the model insect for the order Lepidoptera, has economically important values, and has gained some representative behavioral characteristics compared to its wild ancestor. The genome of B. mori has been fully sequenced while function analysis of BmChi-h and BmSuc1 genes revealed that horizontal gene transfer (HGT maybe bestow a clear selective advantage to B. mori. However, the role of HGT in the evolutionary history of B. mori is largely unexplored. In this study, we compare the whole genome of B. mori with those of 382 prokaryotic and eukaryotic species to investigate the potential HGTs. Results Ten candidate HGT events were defined in B. mori by comprehensive sequence analysis using Maximum Likelihood and Bayesian method combining with EST checking. Phylogenetic analysis of the candidate HGT genes suggested that one HGT was plant-to- B. mori transfer while nine were bacteria-to- B. mori transfer. Furthermore, functional analysis based on expression, coexpression and related literature searching revealed that several HGT candidate genes have added important characters, such as resistance to pathogen, to B. mori. Conclusions Results from this study clearly demonstrated that HGTs play an important role in the evolution of B. mori although the number of HGT events in B. mori is in general smaller than those of microbes and other insects. In particular, interdomain HGTs in B. mori may give rise to functional, persistent, and possibly evolutionarily significant new genes.

  16. Panspermia and horizontal gene transfer (United States)

    Klyce, Brig


    Evidence that extremophiles are hardy and ubiquitous is helping to make panspermia a respectable theory. But even if life on Earth originally came from space, biologists assume that the subsequent evolution of life is still governed by the darwinian paradigm. In this review we show how panspermia could amend darwinism and point to a cosmic source for, not only extremophiles but, all of life. This version of panspermia can be called "strong panspermia." To support this theory we will discuss recent evidence pertaining to horizontal gene transfer, viruses, genes apparently older than the Earthly evolution of the features they encode, and primate-specific genes without identifiable precursors.

  17. Horizontal gene transfer in chromalveolates

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    Bhattacharya Debashish


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Horizontal gene transfer (HGT, the non-genealogical transfer of genetic material between different organisms, is considered a potentially important mechanism of genome evolution in eukaryotes. Using phylogenomic analyses of expressed sequence tag (EST data generated from a clonal cell line of a free living dinoflagellate alga Karenia brevis, we investigated the impact of HGT on genome evolution in unicellular chromalveolate protists. Results We identified 16 proteins that have originated in chromalveolates through ancient HGTs before the divergence of the genera Karenia and Karlodinium and one protein that was derived through a more recent HGT. Detailed analysis of the phylogeny and distribution of identified proteins demonstrates that eight have resulted from independent HGTs in several eukaryotic lineages. Conclusion Recurring intra- and interdomain gene exchange provides an important source of genetic novelty not only in parasitic taxa as previously demonstrated but as we show here, also in free-living protists. Investigating the tempo and mode of evolution of horizontally transferred genes in protists will therefore advance our understanding of mechanisms of adaptation in eukaryotes.

  18. Identification and Categorization of Horizontally Transferred Genes in Prokaryotic Genomes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Shuo-Yong SHI; Xiao-Hui CAI; Da-fu DING


    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT), a process through which genomes acquire genetic materials from distantly related organisms, is believed to be one of the major forces in prokaryotic genome evolution.However, systematic investigation is still scarce to clarify two basic issues about HGT: (1) what types of genes are transferred; and (2) what influence HGT events over the organization and evolution of biological pathways. Genome-scale investigations of these two issues will advance the systematical understanding of HGT in the context of prokaryotic genome evolution. Having investigated 82 genomes, we constructed an HGT database across broad evolutionary timescales. We identified four function categories containing a high proportion of horizontally transferred genes: cell envelope, energy metabolism, regulatory functions, and transport/binding proteins. Such biased function distribution indicates that HGT is not completely random;instead, it is under high selective pressure, required by function restraints in organisms. Furthermore, we mapped the transferred genes onto the connectivity structure map of organism-specific pathways listed in Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG). Our results suggest that recruitment of transferred genes into pathways is also selectively constrained because of the tuned interaction between original pathway members. Pathway organization structures still conserve well through evolution even with the recruitment of horizontally transferred genes. Interestingly, in pathways whose organization were significantly affected by HGT events, the operon-like arrangement of transferred genes was found to be prevalent. Such results suggest that operon plays an essential and directional role in the integration of alien genes into pathways.

  19. Simultaneous identification of duplications and lateral gene transfers. (United States)

    Tofigh, Ali; Hallett, Michael; Lagergren, Jens


    The incongruency between a gene tree and a corresponding species tree can be attributed to evolutionary events such as gene duplication and gene loss. This paper describes a combinatorial model where so-called DTL-scenarios are used to explain the differences between a gene tree and a corresponding species tree taking into account gene duplications, gene losses, and lateral gene transfers (also known as horizontal gene transfers). The reasonable biological constraint that a lateral gene transfer may only occur between contemporary species leads to the notion of acyclic DTL-scenarios. Parsimony methods are introduced by defining appropriate optimization problems. We show that finding most parsimonious acyclic DTL-scenarios is NP-hard. However, by dropping the condition of acyclicity, the problem becomes tractable, and we provide a dynamic programming algorithm as well as a fixed-parameter tractable algorithm for finding most parsimonious DTL-scenarios.

  20. Identification of horizontally transferred genes in the genus Colletotrichum reveals a steady tempo of bacterial to fungal gene transfer. (United States)

    Jaramillo, Vinicio D Armijos; Sukno, Serenella A; Thon, Michael R


    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is the stable transmission of genetic material between organisms by means other than vertical inheritance. HGT has an important role in the evolution of prokaryotes but is relatively rare in eukaryotes. HGT has been shown to contribute to virulence in eukaryotic pathogens. We studied the importance of HGT in plant pathogenic fungi by identifying horizontally transferred genes in the genomes of three members of the genus Colletotrichum. We identified eleven HGT events from bacteria into members of the genus Colletotrichum or their ancestors. The HGT events include genes involved in amino acid, lipid and sugar metabolism as well as lytic enzymes. Additionally, the putative minimal dates of transference were calculated using a time calibrated phylogenetic tree. This analysis reveals a constant flux of genes from bacteria to fungi throughout the evolution of subphylum Pezizomycotina. Genes that are typically transferred by HGT are those that are constantly subject to gene duplication and gene loss. The functions of some of these genes suggest roles in niche adaptation and virulence. We found no evidence of a burst of HGT events coinciding with major geological events. In contrast, HGT appears to be a constant, albeit rare phenomenon in the Pezizomycotina, occurring at a steady rate during their evolution.

  1. Wolbachia genome integrated in an insect chromosome: evolution and fate of laterally transferred endosymbiont genes. (United States)

    Nikoh, Naruo; Tanaka, Kohjiro; Shibata, Fukashi; Kondo, Natsuko; Hizume, Masahiro; Shimada, Masakazu; Fukatsu, Takema


    Recent accumulation of microbial genome data has demonstrated that lateral gene transfers constitute an important and universal evolutionary process in prokaryotes, while those in multicellular eukaryotes are still regarded as unusual, except for endosymbiotic gene transfers from mitochondria and plastids. Here we thoroughly investigated the bacterial genes derived from a Wolbachia endosymbiont on the nuclear genome of the beetle Callosobruchus chinensis. Exhaustive PCR detection and Southern blot analysis suggested that approximately 30% of Wolbachia genes, in terms of the gene repertoire of wMel, are present on the insect nuclear genome. Fluorescent in situ hybridization located the transferred genes on the proximal region of the basal short arm of the X chromosome. Molecular evolutionary and other lines of evidence indicated that the transferred genes are probably derived from a single lateral transfer event. The transferred genes were, for the length examined, structurally disrupted, freed from functional constraints, and transcriptionally inactive. Hence, most, if not all, of the transferred genes have been pseudogenized. Notwithstanding this, the transferred genes were ubiquitously detected from Japanese and Taiwanese populations of C. chinensis, while the number of the transferred genes detected differed between the populations. The transferred genes were not detected from congenic beetle species, indicating that the transfer event occurred after speciation of C. chinensis, which was estimated to be one or several million years ago. These features of the laterally transferred endosymbiont genes are compared with the evolutionary patterns of mitochondrial and plastid genome fragments acquired by nuclear genomes through recent endosymbiotic gene transfers.

  2. Horizontal gene transfer from Agrobacterium to plants

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    Tatiana V. Matveeva


    Full Text Available Most genetic engineering of plants uses Agrobacterium mediated transformation to introduce novel gene content. In nature, insertion of T-DNA in the plant genome and its subsequent transfer via sexual reproduction has been shown in several species in the genera Nicotiana and Linaria. In these natural examples of horizontal gene transfer from Agrobacterium to plants, the T-DNA donor is assumed to be a mikimopine strain of A.rhizogenes. A sequence homologous to the T-DNA of the Ri plasmid of Agrobacterium rhizogenes was found in the genome of untransformed Nicotiana glauca about 30 years ago, and was named cellular T-DNA (cT-DNA. It represents an imperfect inverted repeat and contains homologues of several T-DNA oncogenes (NgrolB, NgrolC, NgORF13, NgORF14 and an opine synthesis gene (Ngmis. A similar cT-DNA has also been found in other species of the genus Nicotiana. These presumably ancient homologues of T-DNA genes are still expressed, indicating that they may play a role in the evolution of these plants. Recently T-DNA has been detected and characterized in Linaria vulgaris and L. dalmatica. In Linaria vulgaris the cT-DNA is present in two copies and organized as a tandem imperfect direct repeat, containing LvORF2, LvORF3, LvORF8, LvrolA, LvrolB, LvrolC, LvORF13, LvORF14, and the Lvmis genes. All L. vulgaris and L. dalmatica plants screened contained the same T-DNA oncogenes and the mis gene. Evidence suggests that there were several independent T-DNA integration events into the genomes of these plant genera. We speculate that ancient plants transformed by A. rhizogenes might have acquired a selective advantage in competition with the parental species. Thus, the events of T-DNA insertion in the plant genome might have affected their evolution, resulting in the creation of new plant species. In this review we focus on the structure and functions of cT-DNA in Linaria and Nicotiana and discuss their possible evolutionary role.

  3. Horizontal gene transfer in the phytosphere

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Elsas, van J.D.; Turner, S.; Bailey, M.J.


    Here, the ecological aspects of gene transfer processes between bacteria in the phytosphere are examined in the context of emerging evidence for the dominant role that horizontal gene transfer (HGT) has played in the evolutionary shaping of bacterial communities. Moreover, the impact of the putative

  4. Gene transfer strategies for augmenting cardiac function. (United States)

    Peppel, K; Koch, W J; Lefkowitz, R J


    Recent transgenic as well as gene-targeted animal models have greatly increased our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of normal and compromised heart function. These studies have raised the possibility of using somatic gene transfer as a means for improving cardiac function. DNA transfer to a significant portion of the myocardium has thus far been difficult to accomplish. This review describes current efforts to achieve myocardial gene transfer in several model systems, with particular emphasis placed on adenovirus-mediated gene delivery, its possibilities, and current limitations. (Trend Cardiovasc Med 1997;7:145-150). © 1997, Elsevier Science Inc.

  5. Family Events and the Timing of Intergenerational Transfers (United States)

    Leopold, Thomas; Schneider, Thorsten


    This research investigates how family events in adult children's lives influence the timing of their parents' financial transfers. We draw on retrospective data collected by the German Socio-Economic Panel Study and use event history models to study the effects of marriage, divorce and childbirth on the receipt of large gifts from parents. We find…

  6. Family Events and the Timing of Intergenerational Transfers (United States)

    Leopold, Thomas; Schneider, Thorsten


    This research investigates how family events in adult children's lives influence the timing of their parents' financial transfers. We draw on retrospective data collected by the German Socio-Economic Panel Study and use event history models to study the effects of marriage, divorce and childbirth on the receipt of large gifts from parents. We find…

  7. Gene transfer therapy in vascular diseases. (United States)

    McKay, M J; Gaballa, M A


    Somatic gene therapy of vascular diseases is a promising new field in modern medicine. Recent advancements in gene transfer technology have greatly evolved our understanding of the pathophysiologic role of candidate disease genes. With this knowledge, the expression of selective gene products provides the means to test the therapeutic use of gene therapy in a multitude of medical conditions. In addition, with the completion of genome sequencing programs, gene transfer can be used also to study the biologic function of novel genes in vivo. Novel genes are delivered to targeted tissue via several different vehicles. These vectors include adenoviruses, retroviruses, plasmids, plasmid/liposomes, and oligonucleotides. However, each one of these vectors has inherent limitations. Further investigations into developing delivery systems that not only allow for efficient, targeted gene transfer, but also are stable and nonimmunogenic, will optimize the clinical application of gene therapy in vascular diseases. This review further discusses the available mode of gene delivery and examines six major areas in vascular gene therapy, namely prevention of restenosis, thrombosis, hypertension, atherosclerosis, peripheral vascular disease in congestive heart failure, and ischemia. Although we highlight some of the recent advances in the use of gene therapy in treating vascular disease discovered primarily during the past two years, many excellent studies published during that period are not included in this review due to space limitations. The following is a selective review of practical uses of gene transfer therapy in vascular diseases. This review primarily covers work performed in the last 2 years. For earlier work, the reader may refer to several excellent review articles. For instance, Belalcazer et al. (6) reviewed general aspects of somatic gene therapy and the different vehicles used for the delivery of therapeutic genes. Gene therapy in restenosis and stimulation of

  8. Differences in lateral gene transfer in hypersaline versus thermal environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    House Christopher H


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The role of lateral gene transfer (LGT in the evolution of microorganisms is only beginning to be understood. While most LGT events occur between closely related individuals, inter-phylum and inter-domain LGT events are not uncommon. These distant transfer events offer potentially greater fitness advantages and it is for this reason that these "long distance" LGT events may have significantly impacted the evolution of microbes. One mechanism driving distant LGT events is microbial transformation. Theoretically, transformative events can occur between any two species provided that the DNA of one enters the habitat of the other. Two categories of microorganisms that are well-known for LGT are the thermophiles and halophiles. Results We identified potential inter-class LGT events into both a thermophilic class of Archaea (Thermoprotei and a halophilic class of Archaea (Halobacteria. We then categorized these LGT genes as originating in thermophiles and halophiles respectively. While more than 68% of transfer events into Thermoprotei taxa originated in other thermophiles, less than 11% of transfer events into Halobacteria taxa originated in other halophiles. Conclusions Our results suggest that there is a fundamental difference between LGT in thermophiles and halophiles. We theorize that the difference lies in the different natures of the environments. While DNA degrades rapidly in thermal environments due to temperature-driven denaturization, hypersaline environments are adept at preserving DNA. Furthermore, most hypersaline environments, as topographical minima, are natural collectors of cellular debris. Thus halophiles would in theory be exposed to a greater diversity and quantity of extracellular DNA than thermophiles.

  9. Horizontal functional gene transfer from bacteria to fishes. (United States)

    Sun, Bao-Fa; Li, Tong; Xiao, Jin-Hua; Jia, Ling-Yi; Liu, Li; Zhang, Peng; Murphy, Robert W; He, Shun-Min; Huang, Da-Wei


    Invertebrates can acquire functional genes via horizontal gene transfer (HGT) from bacteria but fishes are not known to do so. We provide the first reliable evidence of one HGT event from marine bacteria to fishes. The HGT appears to have occurred after emergence of the teleosts. The transferred gene is expressed and regulated developmentally. Its successful integration and expression may change the genetic and metabolic repertoire of fishes. In addition, this gene contains conserved domains and similar tertiary structures in fishes and their putative donor bacteria. Thus, it may function similarly in both groups. Evolutionary analyses indicate that it evolved under purifying selection, further indicating its conserved function. We document the first likely case of HGT of functional gene from prokaryote to fishes. This discovery certifies that HGT can influence vertebrate evolution.

  10. Gene Transfer & Hybridization Studies in Hyperthermophilic Species

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nelson, Karen E.


    A. ABSTRACT The importance of lateral gene transfer (LGT) in the evolution of microbial species has become increasingly evident with each completed microbial genome sequence. Most significantly, the genome of Thermotoga maritima MSB8, a hyperthermophilic bacterium isolated by Karl Stetter and workers from Vulcano Italy in 1986, and sequenced at The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR) in Rockville Maryland in 1999, revealed extensive LGT between % . this bacterium and members of the archaeal domain (in particular Archaeoglobus fulgidus, and Pyracoccus frcriosus species). Based on whole genome comparisons, it was estimated that 24% of the genetic information in this organism was acquired by genetic exchange with archaeal species, Independent analyses including periodicity analysis of the T. maritimu genomic DNA sequence, phylogenetic reconstruction based on genes that appear archaeal-like, and codon and amino acid usage, have provided additional evidence for LGT between T. maritima and the archaea. More recently, DiRuggiero and workers have identified a very recent LGT event between two genera of hyperthermophilic archaea, where a nearly identical DNA fragment of 16 kb in length flanked by insertion sequence (IS) elements, exists. Undoubtedly, additional examples of LGT will be identified as more microbial genomes are completed. For the present moment however, the genome sequence of T. maritima and other hyperthermophiles including P. furiosus, Pyrococcus horikoshii, Pyrococcus abyssi, A. fulgidus, and Aquifex aeolicus, have significantly increased out awareness of evolution being a web of life rather than a tree of life, as suggested by single gene phylogenies. In this proposal, we will aim to determine the extent of LGT across the hyperthemophiles, employing iY maritima as the model organism. A variety of biochemical techniques and phylogenetic reconstructions will allow for a detailed and thorough characterization of the extent of LGT in this species. The

  11. Gene transfer to promote cardiac regeneration. (United States)

    Collesi, Chiara; Giacca, Mauro


    There is an impelling need to develop new therapeutic strategies for patients with myocardial infarction and heart failure. Leading from the large quantity of new information gathered over the last few years on the mechanisms controlling cardiomyocyte proliferation during embryonic and fetal life, it is now possible to devise innovative therapies based on cardiac gene transfer. Different protein-coding genes controlling cell cycle progression or cardiomyocyte specification and differentiation, along with microRNA mimics and inhibitors regulating pre-natal and early post-natal cell proliferation, are amenable to transformation in potential therapeutics for cardiac regeneration. These gene therapy approaches are conceptually revolutionary, since they are aimed at stimulating the intrinsic potential of differentiated cardiac cells to proliferate, rather than relying on the implantation of exogenously expanded cells to achieve tissue regeneration. For efficient and prolonged cardiac gene transfer, vectors based on the Adeno-Associated Virus stand as safe, efficient and reliable tools for cardiac gene therapy applications.

  12. Transfer of Trust in Event-based Reputation Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Mogens; Krukow, Karl


    choice of model from concurrency theory. In this paper, we continue this line of research, addressing the problem on how to transfer trust from one behavioural context to another. Our proposed frameworks build on morphisms between event structures, and we prove some generic results guaranteeing formal......In the Global Computing scenario, trust-based systems have been proposed and studied as an alternative to traditional security mechanisms. A promising line of research concerns the so-called reputation-based computational trust. The approach here is that trust in a computing agent is defined...... properties of transfers in the frameworks....

  13. Viral Vectors for in Vivo Gene Transfer (United States)

    Thévenot, E.; Dufour, N.; Déglon, N.

    The transfer of DNA into the nucleus of a eukaryotic cell (gene transfer) is a central theme of modern biology. The transfer is said to be somatic when it refers to non-germline organs of a developed individual, and germline when it concerns gametes or the fertilised egg of an animal, with the aim of transmitting the relevant genetic modification to its descendents [1]. The efficient introduction of genetic material into a somatic or germline cell and the control of its expression over time have led to major advances in understanding how genes work in vivo, i.e., in living organisms (functional genomics), but also to the development of innovative therapeutic methods (gene therapy). The efficiency of gene transfer is conditioned by the vehicle used, called the vector. Desirable features for a vector are as follows: Easy to produce high titer stocks of the vector in a reproducible way. Absence of toxicity related to transduction (transfer of genetic material into the target cell, and its expression there) and no immune reaction of the organism against the vector and/or therapeutic protein. Stability in the expression of the relevant gene over time, and the possibility of regulation, e.g., to control expression of the therapeutic protein on the physiological level, or to end expression at the end of treatment. Transduction of quiescent cells should be as efficient as transduction of dividing cells. Vectors currently used fall into two categories: non-viral and viral vectors. In non-viral vectors, the DNA is complexed with polymers, lipids, or cationic detergents (described in Chap. 3). These vectors have a low risk of toxicity and immune reaction. However, they are less efficient in vivo than viral vectors when it comes to the number of cells transduced and long-term transgene expression. (Naked DNA transfer or electroporation is rather inefficient in the organism. This type of gene transfer will not be discussed here, and the interested reader is referred to the

  14. Lateral transfer of the lux gene cluster. (United States)

    Kasai, Sabu; Okada, Kazuhisa; Hoshino, Akinori; Iida, Tetsuya; Honda, Takeshi


    The lux operon is an uncommon gene cluster. To find the pathway through which the operon has been transferred, we sequenced the operon and both flanking regions in four typical luminous species. In Vibrio cholerae NCIMB 41, a five-gene cluster, most genes of which were highly similar to orthologues present in Gram-positive bacteria, along with the lux operon, is inserted between VC1560 and VC1563, on chromosome 1. Because this entire five-gene cluster is present in Photorhabdus luminescens TT01, about 1.5 Mbp upstream of the operon, we deduced that the operon and the gene cluster were transferred from V. cholerae to an ancestor of Pr. luminescens. Because in both V. fischeri and Shewanella hanedai, luxR and luxI were found just upstream of the operon, we concluded that the operon was transferred from either species to the other. Because most of the genes flanking the operon were highly similar to orthologues present on chromosome 2 of vibrios, we speculated that the operon of most species is located on this chromosome. The undigested genomic DNAs of five luminous species were analysed by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis and Southern hybridization. In all the species except V. cholerae, the operons are located on chromosome 2.

  15. Horizontal gene transfer in the evolution of photosynthetic eukaryotes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jinling HUANG; Jipei YUE


    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) may not only create genome mosaicism,but also introduce evolutionary novelties to recipient organisms.HGT in plastid genomes,though relatively rare,still exists.HGT-derived genes are particularly common in unicellular photosynthetic eukaryotes and they also occur in multicellular plants.In particular,ancient HGT events occurring during the early evolution of primary photosynthetic eukaryotes were probably frequent.There is clear evidence that anciently acquired genes played an important role in the establishment of primary plastids and in the transition of plants from aquatic to terrestrial environments.Although algal genes have often been used to infer historical plastids in plastid-lacking eukaryotes,reliable approaches are needed to distinguish endosymbionts-derived genes from those independently acquired from preferential feeding or other activities.

  16. Gene transfer approaches in cancer immunotherapy. (United States)

    Larin, S S; Georgiev, G P; Kiselev, S L


    The idea of enhancing or establishing effective immune response against endogenously developed tumor cells is not novel. More than a hundred years ago, bacterial components were used to develop antitumor immune response. Later, when a number of immune system-effecting cytokines had been discovered, they were used for systemic treatment of cancer patients. However, systemic treatment often resulted in even negative outcome. Recent developments of genetic approaches of cell modifications allowed developing of modern techniques of targeted tumor cell elimination. In the present paper, we review modern trends of the antitumor response enhancement based on immunoregulatory gene transfer into different cell types both in vivo and in vitro. Almost all these approaches are based on the activation of the adaptive arm of the immune system in response to tumor cells. However, recent studies indicate that the innate arm of the immune system, as well as adaptive arm, is involved in tumor suppression. The innate immune system uses nonrearranging germline receptors, which could trigger cellular effector responses that are conditional (or instructive) to the subsequent adaptive immune response. Last years' viewpoints on 'self' and 'non-self' recognition and primary induction of the immune response have changed. The key role of lymphocytes is pathogen recognition and, following immune response induction, switched on the central role of dendritic cells in 'non-self' recognition and induction of both innate and adaptive responses. Moreover, innate response is supposed to be an essential starting point in induction of successful and effective acquired response. Most cancer vaccines do not have 'non-self' marks presentation due to their endogenous origin, thus lacking their effectiveness in the induction of the specific long-lasting immune response. Taking this point into consideration, we can conclude that to make cancer vaccine more effective we have to present tumor antigens

  17. Characterization of an ancient lepidopteran lateral gene transfer.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Wheeler

    Full Text Available Bacteria to eukaryote lateral gene transfers (LGT are an important potential source of material for the evolution of novel genetic traits. The explosion in the number of newly sequenced genomes provides opportunities to identify and characterize examples of these lateral gene transfer events, and to assess their role in the evolution of new genes. In this paper, we describe an ancient lepidopteran LGT of a glycosyl hydrolase family 31 gene (GH31 from an Enterococcus bacteria. PCR amplification between the LGT and a flanking insect gene confirmed that the GH31 was integrated into the Bombyx mori genome and was not a result of an assembly error. Database searches in combination with degenerate PCR on a panel of 7 lepidopteran families confirmed that the GH31 LGT event occurred deep within the Order approximately 65-145 million years ago. The most basal species in which the LGT was found is Plutella xylostella (superfamily: Yponomeutoidea. Array data from Bombyx mori shows that GH31 is expressed, and low dN/dS ratios indicates the LGT coding sequence is under strong stabilizing selection. These findings provide further support for the proposition that bacterial LGTs are relatively common in insects and likely to be an underappreciated source of adaptive genetic material.

  18. Examining Ancient Inter-domain Horizontal Gene Transfer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisca C. Almeida


    Full Text Available Details of the genomic changes that occurred in the ancestors of Eukarya, Archaea and Bacteria are elusive. Ancient interdomain horizontal gene transfer (IDHGT amongst the ancestors of these three domains has been difficult to detect and analyze because of the extreme degree of divergence of genes in these three domains and because most evidence for such events are poorly supported. In addition, many researchers have suggested that the prevalence of IDHGT events early in the evolution of life would most likely obscure the patterns of divergence of major groups of organisms let alone allow the tracking of horizontal transfer at this level. In order to approach this problem, we mined the E. coli genome for genes with distinct paralogs. Using the 1,268 E. coli K-12 genes with 40% or higher similarity level to a paralog elsewhere in the E. coli genome we detected 95 genes found exclusively in Bacteria and Archaea and 86 genes found in Bacteria and Eukarya. These genes form the basis for our analysis of IDHGT. We also applied a newly developed statistical test (the node height test, to examine the robustness of these inferences and to corroborate the phylogenetically identifi ed cases of ancient IDHGT. Our results suggest that ancient inter domain HGT is restricted to special cases, mostly involving symbiosis in eukaryotes and specific adaptations in prokaryotes. Only three genes in the Bacteria + Eukarya class (Deoxyxylulose-5-phosphate synthase (DXPS, fructose 1,6-phosphate aldolase class II protein and glucosamine-6-phosphate deaminase and three genes–in the Bacteria + Archaea class (ABC-type FE3+ -siderophore transport system, ferrous iron transport protein B, and dipeptide transport protein showed evidence of ancient IDHGT. However, we conclude that robust estimates of IDHGT will be very difficult to obtain due to the methodological limitations and the extreme sequence saturation of the genes suspected of being involved in IDHGT.

  19. Evolution of glyoxylate cycle enzymes in Metazoa: evidence of multiple horizontal transfer events and pseudogene formation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Finogenova Tatiana V


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The glyoxylate cycle is thought to be present in bacteria, protists, plants, fungi, and nematodes, but not in other Metazoa. However, activity of the glyoxylate cycle enzymes, malate synthase (MS and isocitrate lyase (ICL, in animal tissues has been reported. In order to clarify the status of the MS and ICL genes in animals and get an insight into their evolution, we undertook a comparative-genomic study. Results Using sequence similarity searches, we identified MS genes in arthropods, echinoderms, and vertebrates, including platypus and opossum, but not in the numerous sequenced genomes of placental mammals. The regions of the placental mammals' genomes expected to code for malate synthase, as determined by comparison of the gene orders in vertebrate genomes, show clear similarity to the opossum MS sequence but contain stop codons, indicating that the MS gene became a pseudogene in placental mammals. By contrast, the ICL gene is undetectable in animals other than the nematodes that possess a bifunctional, fused ICL-MS gene. Examination of phylogenetic trees of MS and ICL suggests multiple horizontal gene transfer events that probably went in both directions between several bacterial and eukaryotic lineages. The strongest evidence was obtained for the acquisition of the bifunctional ICL-MS gene from an as yet unknown bacterial source with the corresponding operonic organization by the common ancestor of the nematodes. Conclusion The distribution of the MS and ICL genes in animals suggests that either they encode alternative enzymes of the glyoxylate cycle that are not orthologous to the known MS and ICL or the animal MS acquired a new function that remains to be characterized. Regardless of the ultimate solution to this conundrum, the genes for the glyoxylate cycle enzymes present a remarkable variety of evolutionary events including unusual horizontal gene transfer from bacteria to animals. Reviewers Arcady Mushegian

  20. Widespread occurrence and lateral transfer of the cyanobactin biosynthesis gene cluster in cyanobacteria. (United States)

    Leikoski, Niina; Fewer, David P; Sivonen, Kaarina


    Cyanobactins are small cyclic peptides produced by cyanobacteria. Here we demonstrate the widespread but sporadic occurrence of the cyanobactin biosynthetic pathway. We detected a cyanobactin biosynthetic gene in 48 of the 132 strains included in this study. Our results suggest that cyanobactin biosynthetic genes have a complex evolutionary history in cyanobacteria punctuated by a series of ancient horizontal gene transfer events.

  1. Widespread Occurrence and Lateral Transfer of the Cyanobactin Biosynthesis Gene Cluster in Cyanobacteria ▿ †


    Leikoski, Niina; Fewer, David P.; Sivonen, Kaarina


    Cyanobactins are small cyclic peptides produced by cyanobacteria. Here we demonstrate the widespread but sporadic occurrence of the cyanobactin biosynthetic pathway. We detected a cyanobactin biosynthetic gene in 48 of the 132 strains included in this study. Our results suggest that cyanobactin biosynthetic genes have a complex evolutionary history in cyanobacteria punctuated by a series of ancient horizontal gene transfer events.

  2. Viral vectors for gene transfer: current status of gene therapeutics. (United States)

    Heilbronn, Regine; Weger, Stefan


    Gene therapy for the correction of inherited or acquired disease has gained increasing importance in recent years. Successful treatment of children suffering from severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) was achieved using retrovirus vectors for gene transfer. Encouraging improvements of vision were reported in a genetic eye disorder (LCA) leading to early childhood blindness. Adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors were used for gene transfer in these trials. This chapter gives an overview of the design and delivery of viral vectors for the transport of a therapeutic gene into a target cell or tissue. The construction and production of retrovirus, lentivirus, and AAV vectors are covered. The focus is on production methods suitable for biopharmaceutical upscaling and for downstream processing. Quality control measures and biological safety considerations for the use of vectors in clinical trials are discussed.

  3. Detecting Horizontal Gene Transfer between Closely Related Taxa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Orit Adato


    Full Text Available Horizontal gene transfer (HGT, the transfer of genetic material between organisms, is crucial for genetic innovation and the evolution of genome architecture. Existing HGT detection algorithms rely on a strong phylogenetic signal distinguishing the transferred sequence from ancestral (vertically derived genes in its recipient genome. Detecting HGT between closely related species or strains is challenging, as the phylogenetic signal is usually weak and the nucleotide composition is normally nearly identical. Nevertheless, there is a great importance in detecting HGT between congeneric species or strains, especially in clinical microbiology, where understanding the emergence of new virulent and drug-resistant strains is crucial, and often time-sensitive. We developed a novel, self-contained technique named Near HGT, based on the synteny index, to measure the divergence of a gene from its native genomic environment and used it to identify candidate HGT events between closely related strains. The method confirms candidate transferred genes based on the constant relative mutability (CRM. Using CRM, the algorithm assigns a confidence score based on "unusual" sequence divergence. A gene exhibiting exceptional deviations according to both synteny and mutability criteria, is considered a validated HGT product. We first employed the technique to a set of three E. coli strains and detected several highly probable horizontally acquired genes. We then compared the method to existing HGT detection tools using a larger strain data set. When combined with additional approaches our new algorithm provides richer picture and brings us closer to the goal of detecting all newly acquired genes in a particular strain.

  4. Horizontal gene transfer and bacterial diversity

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Chitra Dutta; Archana Pan


    Bacterial genomes are extremely dynamic and mosaic in nature. A substantial amount of genetic information is inserted into or deleted from such genomes through the process of horizontal transfer. Through the introduction of novel physiological traits from distantly related organisms, horizontal gene transfer often causes drastic changes in the ecological and pathogenic character of bacterial species and thereby promotes microbial diversification and speciation. This review discusses how the recent influx of complete chromosomal sequences of various microorganisms has allowed for a quantitative assessment of the scope, rate and impact of horizontally transmitted information on microbial evolution.


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schwadron, N. A. [University of New Hampshire, 105 Main Street, Durham, NH 03824 (United States); McComas, D. J., E-mail: [Southwest Research Institute, 6220 Culebra Road, San Antonio, TX 78238-5166 (United States)


    Plasma wave observations from Voyager 1 have recently shown large increases in plasma density, to about 0.1 cm{sup –3}, consistent with the density of the local interstellar medium. However, corresponding magnetic field observations continue to show the spiral magnetic field direction observed throughout the inner heliosheath. These apparently contradictory observations may be reconciled if Voyager 1 is inside an interstellar flux transfer event—similar to flux transfer events routinely seen at the Earth's magnetopause. If this were the case, Voyager 1 remains inside the heliopause and based on the Voyager 1 observations we can determine the polarity of the interstellar magnetic field for the first time.

  6. Ion and electron velocity distributions within flux transfer events (United States)

    Thomsen, M. F.; Stansberry, J. A.; Bame, S. J.; Fuselier, S. A.; Gosling, J. T.


    The detailed nature of the thermal and suprathermal ion and electron distributions within magnetic flux transfer events (FTEs) is examined. Examples of both magnetosheath FTEs and magnetospheric FTEs are discussed. The detailed distributions confirm that FTEs contain a mixture of magnetosheath and magnetospheric plasmas. To lowest order, the distributions are consistent with a simple superposition of the two interpenetrating populations, with no strong interactions between them. To first order, some interesting differences appear, especially in the electron distributions, suggesting that considerable pitch angle scattering and some electron energy diffusion are also occurring. These observations should provide a useful test of analytical and numerical studies of interpenetrating plasmas.

  7. Horizontal transfer of carbohydrate metabolism genes into ectomycorrhizal Amanita. (United States)

    Chaib De Mares, Maryam; Hess, Jaqueline; Floudas, Dimitrios; Lipzen, Anna; Choi, Cindy; Kennedy, Megan; Grigoriev, Igor V; Pringle, Anne


    The genus Amanita encompasses both symbiotic, ectomycorrhizal fungi and asymbiotic litter decomposers; all species are derived from asymbiotic ancestors. Symbiotic species are no longer able to degrade plant cell walls. The carbohydrate esterases family 1 (CE1s) is a diverse group of enzymes involved in carbon metabolism, including decomposition and carbon storage. CE1 genes of the ectomycorrhizal A. muscaria appear diverged from all other fungal homologues, and more similar to CE1s of bacteria, suggesting a horizontal gene transfer (HGT) event. In order to test whether AmanitaCE1s were acquired horizontally, we built a phylogeny of CE1s collected from across the tree of life, and describe the evolution of CE1 genes among Amanita and relevant lineages of bacteria. CE1s of symbiotic Amanita were very different from CE1s of asymbiotic Amanita, and are more similar to bacterial CE1s. The protein structure of one CE1 gene of A. muscaria matched a depolymerase that degrades the carbon storage molecule poly((R)-3-hydroxybutyrate) (PHB). Asymbiotic Amanita do not carry sequence or structural homologues of these genes. The CE1s acquired through HGT may enable novel metabolisms, or play roles in signaling or defense. This is the first evidence for the horizontal transfer of carbohydrate metabolism genes into ectomycorrhizal fungi.

  8. What controls the local time extent of flux transfer events?

    CERN Document Server

    Milan, S E; Carter, J A; Walach, M -T; Hubert, B


    Flux transfer events (FTEs) are the manifestation of bursty and/or patchy magnetic reconnection at the magnetopause. We compare two sequences of the ionospheric signatures of flux transfer events observed in global auroral imagery and coherent ionospheric radar measurements. Both sequences were observed during very similar seasonal and interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) conditions, though with differing solar wind speed. A key observation is that the signatures differed considerably in their local time extent. The two periods are 26 August 1998, when the IMF had components $\\mathit{B}_{\\mathit{z}}$ $\\approx$ -10 nT and $\\mathit{B}_{\\mathit{y}}$ $\\approx$ 9 nT and the solar wind speed was $\\mathit{V}_{\\mathit{x}}$ $\\approx$ 650 km $s^{-1}$, and 31 August 2005, IMF $\\mathit{B}_{\\mathit{z}}$ $\\approx$ -7 nT, $\\mathit{B}_{\\mathit{y}}$ $\\approx$ 17 nT, and $\\mathit{V}_{\\mathit{x}}$ $\\approx$ 380 km $s^{-1}$. In the first case, the reconnection rate was estimated to be near 160 kV, and the FTE signatures extended ...

  9. Radiation Transfer Model for Aerosol Events in the Earth Atmosphere (United States)

    Mukai, Sonoyo; Yokomae, Takuma; Nakata, Makiko; Sano, Itaru

    Recently large scale-forest fire, which damages the Earth environment as biomass burning and emission of carbonaceous particles, frequently occurs due to the unstable climate and/or global warming tendency. It is also known that the heavy soil dust is transported from the China continent to Japan on westerly winds, especially in spring. Furthermore the increasing emis-sions of anthropogenic particles associated with continuing economic growth scatter serious air pollutants. Thus atmospheric aerosols, especially in Asia, are very complex and heavy loading, which is called aerosol event. In the case of aerosol events, it is rather difficult to do the sun/sky photometry from the ground, however satellite observation is an effective for aerosol monitoring. Here the detection algorithms from space for such aerosol events as dust storm or biomass burn-ing are dealt with multispectral satellite data as ADEOS-2/GLI, Terra/Aqua/MODIS and/or GOSAT/CAI first. And then aerosol retrieval algorithms are examined based on new radiation transfer code for semi-infinite atmosphere model. The derived space-based results are validated with ground-based measurements and/or model simulations. Namely the space-or surface-based measurements, multiple scattering calculations and model simulations are synthesized together for aerosol retrieval in this work.

  10. Horizontal Gene Transfer, Dispersal and Haloarchaeal Speciation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Thane Papke


    Full Text Available The Halobacteria are a well-studied archaeal class and numerous investigations are showing how their diversity is distributed amongst genomes and geographic locations. Evidence indicates that recombination between species continuously facilitates the arrival of new genes, and within species, it is frequent enough to spread acquired genes amongst all individuals in the population. To create permanent independent diversity and generate new species, barriers to recombination are probably required. The data support an interpretation that rates of evolution (e.g., horizontal gene transfer and mutation are faster at creating geographically localized variation than dispersal and invasion are at homogenizing genetic differences between locations. Therefore, we suggest that recurrent episodes of dispersal followed by variable periods of endemism break the homogenizing forces of intrapopulation recombination and that this process might be the principal stimulus leading to divergence and speciation in Halobacteria.

  11. Horizontal Gene Transfer, Dispersal and Haloarchaeal Speciation (United States)

    Papke, R. Thane; Corral, Paulina; Ram-Mohan, Nikhil; de la Haba, Rafael R.; Sánchez-Porro, Cristina; Makkay, Andrea; Ventosa, Antonio


    The Halobacteria are a well-studied archaeal class and numerous investigations are showing how their diversity is distributed amongst genomes and geographic locations. Evidence indicates that recombination between species continuously facilitates the arrival of new genes, and within species, it is frequent enough to spread acquired genes amongst all individuals in the population. To create permanent independent diversity and generate new species, barriers to recombination are probably required. The data support an interpretation that rates of evolution (e.g., horizontal gene transfer and mutation) are faster at creating geographically localized variation than dispersal and invasion are at homogenizing genetic differences between locations. Therefore, we suggest that recurrent episodes of dispersal followed by variable periods of endemism break the homogenizing forces of intrapopulation recombination and that this process might be the principal stimulus leading to divergence and speciation in Halobacteria. PMID:25997110

  12. Unusual features of the sequences of copies of the 16S-23S rRNA internal transcribed spacer regions of Acinetobacter bereziniae, Acinetobacter guillouiae and Acinetobacter baylyi arise from horizontal gene transfer events. (United States)

    Maslunka, Christopher; Gürtler, Volker; Seviour, Robert


    The highly variable nature of the internal transcribed spacer region (ITS) has been claimed to represent an ideal target for designing species-specific probes/primers capable of differentiating between closely related Acinetobacter species. However, several Acinetobacter species contain multiple ITS copies of variable lengths, and these include Acinetobacter bereziniae, Acinetobacter guillouiae and Acinetobacter baylyi. This study shows these length variations result from inter-genomic insertion/deletion events (indels) involving horizontal transfer of ITS fragments of other Acinetobacter species and possibly unrelated bacteria, as shown previously by us. In some instances, indel incorporation results in the loss of probe target sites in the recipient cell ITS. In other cases, some indel sequences contain target sites for probes designed from a single ITS sequence to target other Acinetobacter species. Hence, these can generate false positives. The largest of the indels that remove probe sites is 683 bp (labelled bay/i1-0), and it derives from the horizontal transfer of a complete ITS between A. bereziniae BCRC15423(T) and A. baylyi strain ADP1. As a consequence, ITS sequencing or fingerprinting cannot be used to distinguish between the 683 bp ITS in these two strains.

  13. Ultrasound and Microbubbles: Their Functions in Gene Transfer In Vitro

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHEN Yunchao; HUANG Daozhong; LI Kaiyan; WANG Zhihui; HONG Kai; WANG Fen; ZANG Qingping


    To examine the role of ultrasound in gene delivery in vitro, three cells lines were exposed to the low-frequency ultrasound of varying intensities and for different durations to evaluate their effect on gene transfection and cell viability of the cells. Microbubble (MB), Optison (10%), was also used to observe the role of the microbubbles in gene transfection. The results demonstrated that as the ultrasound intensity and the exposure time increased, the gene transfer rate increased and the cell viability decreased, but at high energy intensities, the cell viability decreased dramatically, which caused the transfer rate to decrease. The most efficient ultrasound intensity for inducing gene transfer was 1 W/cm2 with duration being 20 s. At the same energy intensity, higher ultrasound intensity could achieve maximal gene transfer rate earlier. Microbubbles could increase ultrasound-induced cell gene transfer rate by about 2 to 3 times mainly at lower energy intensities. Moreover, microbubbles could raise the maximum gene transfer rate mediated by ultrasound. It is concluded that the low-frequency ultrasound can induce cell gene transfer and the cell gene transfer rate and viability are correlated with not only the ultrasound energy intensity but also the ultrasound intensity, the higher ultrasound intensity achieves its maximal transfer rate more quickly and the ultrasound intensity that can induce optimal gene transfer is 1 W/cm2 with duration being 20 s, and microbubbles can significantly increase the maximal gene transfer rate in vitro.

  14. Risks from GMOs due to horizontal gene transfer. (United States)

    Keese, Paul


    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is the stable transfer of genetic material from one organism to another without reproduction or human intervention. Transfer occurs by the passage of donor genetic material across cellular boundaries, followed by heritable incorporation to the genome of the recipient organism. In addition to conjugation, transformation and transduction, other diverse mechanisms of DNA and RNA uptake occur in nature. The genome of almost every organism reveals the footprint of many ancient HGT events. Most commonly, HGT involves the transmission of genes on viruses or mobile genetic elements. HGT first became an issue of public concern in the 1970s through the natural spread of antibiotic resistance genes amongst pathogenic bacteria, and more recently with commercial production of genetically modified (GM) crops. However, the frequency of HGT from plants to other eukaryotes or prokaryotes is extremely low. The frequency of HGT to viruses is potentially greater, but is restricted by stringent selection pressures. In most cases the occurrence of HGT from GM crops to other organisms is expected to be lower than background rates. Therefore, HGT from GM plants poses negligible risks to human health or the environment.

  15. MESSENGER Observations of Large Flux Transfer Events at Mercury (United States)

    Slavin, James A.; Lepping, Ronald P.; Wu, Chin-Chun; Anderson, Brian J.; Baker, Daniel N.; Benna, Mehdi; Boardsen, Scott A.; Killen, Rosemary M.; Korth, Haje; Krimigis, Stamatios M.; McClintock, William E.; McNutt, Ralph L., Jr.; Sarantos, Menelaos; Schriver, David; Solomon, Sean C.; Travnicek, Pavel; Zurbuchen, Thomas H.


    Six flux transfer events (FTEs) were encountered during MESSENGER's first two flybys of Mercury (M1 and M2). For M1 the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) was predominantly northward and four FTEs with durations of 1 to 6 s were observed in the magnetosheath following southward IMF turnings. The IMF was steadily southward during M2, and an FTE 4 s in duration was observed just inside the dawn magnetopause followed approx. 32 s later by a 7 s FTE in the magnetosheath. Flux rope models were fit to the magnetic field data to determine FTE dimensions and flux content. The largest FTE observed by MESSENGER had a diameter of approx. 1 R(sub M) (where R(sub M) is Mercury s radius), and its open magnetic field increased the fraction of the surface exposed to the solar wind by 10 - 20 percent and contributed up to approx. 30 kV to the cross-magnetospheric electric potential.

  16. Sudden Chain Energy Transfer Events in Vibrated Granular Media (United States)

    Rivas, Nicolás; Ponce, Suomi; Soto, Rodrigo; Cordero, Patricio; Mujica, Nicolás; Risso, Dino; Gallet, Basille


    In a mixture of two species of grains of equal size but different mass, placed in a vertically vibrated shallow box, there is spontaneous segregation. Once the system is at least partly segregated and clusters of the heavy particles have formed, there are sudden peaks of the horizontal kinetic energy of the heavy particles, that is otherwise small. Together with the energy peaks the clusters rapidly expand and the segregation is partially lost. The process repeats once segregation has taken place again, either randomly or with some regularity in time depending on the experimental or numerical parameters. An explanation for these events is provided based on the existence of a fixed point for an isolated particle bouncing with only vertical motion. The horizontal energy peaks occur when the energy stored in the vertical motion is partly transferred into horizontal energy through a chain reaction of collisions between heavy particles.

  17. Aphids acquired symbiotic genes via lateral gene transfer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nakabachi Atsushi


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Aphids possess bacteriocytes, which are cells specifically differentiated to harbour the obligate mutualist Buchnera aphidicola (γ-Proteobacteria. Buchnera has lost many of the genes that appear to be essential for bacterial life. From the bacteriocyte of the pea aphid Acyrthosiphon pisum, we previously identified two clusters of expressed sequence tags that display similarity only to bacterial genes. Southern blot analysis demonstrated that they are encoded in the aphid genome. In this study, in order to assess the possibility of lateral gene transfer, we determined the full-length sequences of these transcripts, and performed detailed structural and phylogenetic analyses. We further examined their expression levels in the bacteriocyte using real-time quantitative RT-PCR. Results Sequence similarity searches demonstrated that these fully sequenced transcripts are significantly similar to the bacterial genes ldcA (product, LD-carboxypeptidase and rlpA (product, rare lipoprotein A, respectively. Buchnera lacks these genes, whereas many other bacteria, including Escherichia coli, a close relative of Buchnera, possess both ldcA and rlpA. Molecular phylogenetic analysis clearly demonstrated that the aphid ldcA was derived from a rickettsial bacterium closely related to the extant Wolbachia spp. (α-Proteobacteria, Rickettsiales, which are intracellular symbionts of various lineages of arthropods. The evolutionary origin of rlpA was not fully resolved, but it was clearly demonstrated that its double-ψ β-barrel domain is of bacterial origin. Real-time quantitative RT-PCR demonstrated that ldcA and rlpA are expressed 11.6 and 154-fold higher in the bacteriocyte than in the whole body, respectively. LdcA is an enzyme required for recycling murein (peptidoglycan, which is a component of the bacterial cell wall. As Buchnera possesses a cell wall composed of murein but lacks ldcA, a high level of expression of the aphid ldcA in the

  18. Lateral Gene Transfer Dynamics in the Ancient Bacterial Genus Streptomyces. (United States)

    McDonald, Bradon R; Currie, Cameron R


    Lateral gene transfer (LGT) profoundly shapes the evolution of bacterial lineages. LGT across disparate phylogenetic groups and genome content diversity between related organisms suggest a model of bacterial evolution that views LGT as rampant and promiscuous. It has even driven the argument that species concepts and tree-based phylogenetics cannot be applied to bacteria. Here, we show that acquisition and retention of genes through LGT are surprisingly rare in the ubiquitous and biomedically important bacterial genus Streptomyces Using a molecular clock, we estimate that the Streptomyces bacteria are ~380 million years old, indicating that this bacterial genus is as ancient as land vertebrates. Calibrating LGT rate to this geologic time span, we find that on average only 10 genes per million years were acquired and subsequently maintained. Over that same time span, Streptomyces accumulated thousands of point mutations. By explicitly incorporating evolutionary timescale into our analyses, we provide a dramatically different view on the dynamics of LGT and its impact on bacterial evolution.IMPORTANCE Tree-based phylogenetics and the use of species as units of diversity lie at the foundation of modern biology. In bacteria, these pillars of evolutionary theory have been called into question due to the observation of thousands of lateral gene transfer (LGT) events within and between lineages. Here, we show that acquisition and retention of genes through LGT are exceedingly rare in the bacterial genus Streptomyces, with merely one gene acquired in Streptomyces lineages every 100,000 years. These findings stand in contrast to the current assumption of rampant genetic exchange, which has become the dominant hypothesis used to explain bacterial diversity. Our results support a more nuanced understanding of genetic exchange, with LGT impacting evolution over short timescales but playing a significant role over long timescales. Deeper understanding of LGT provides new

  19. Role of interchange instability in flux transfer event origin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. V. Rezhenov

    Full Text Available It is shown that the interaction of the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF, when it has southward component, with the geomagnetic field leads to the formation of an enhanced pressure layer (EPL near the magnetopause. Currents flowing on the boundary between the EPL and the magnetosheath prevent the IMF from penetrating the magnetosphere. However, the outward boundary of the EPL is unstable. The interchange instability permanently destroys the EPL. Separate filaments of the EPL move away from the Earth. New colder plasma of the magnetosheath with a frozen magnetic field replaces the hotter EPL plasma, and the process of EPL formation and destruction repeats itself.

    The instability increment is calculated for various magnitudes of the azimuthal wave number, ky, and curvature radius of the magnetic field lines, Rc. The disturbances with R-1eky≤4R-1e (where Re is the Earth's radius and RcRe are the most unstable.

    A possible result of the interchange instability of the EPL may be patchy reconnection, displayed as flux transfer events (FTEs near the magnetopause.

  20. Progress in gene transfer by germ cells in mammals

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    Use of germ cells as vectors for transgenesis in mammals has been well developed and offers exciting prospects for experimental and applied biology, agricultural and medical sciences.Such approach is referred to as either male germ cell mediated gene transfer (MGCMGT)or female germ cell mediated gene transfer(FGCMGT)technique.Sperm-mediated gene transfer (SMGT),including its alternative method,testis-mediated gene transfer(TMGT),becomes an established and reliable method for transgenesis.They have been extensively used for producing transgenic animals.The newly developed approach of FGCMGT,ovary-mediated gene transfer(OMGT) is also a novel and useful tool for efficient transgenesis.This review highlights an overview of the recent progress in germ cell mediated gene transfer techniques,methods developed and mechanisms of nucleic acid uptake by germ cells.

  1. Extensive intra-kingdom horizontal gene transfer converging on a fungal fructose transporter gene.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco A Coelho


    Full Text Available Comparative genomics revealed in the last decade a scenario of rampant horizontal gene transfer (HGT among prokaryotes, but for fungi a clearly dominant pattern of vertical inheritance still stands, punctuated however by an increasing number of exceptions. In the present work, we studied the phylogenetic distribution and pattern of inheritance of a fungal gene encoding a fructose transporter (FSY1 with unique substrate selectivity. 109 FSY1 homologues were identified in two sub-phyla of the Ascomycota, in a survey that included 241 available fungal genomes. At least 10 independent inter-species instances of horizontal gene transfer (HGT involving FSY1 were identified, supported by strong phylogenetic evidence and synteny analyses. The acquisition of FSY1 through HGT was sometimes suggestive of xenolog gene displacement, but several cases of pseudoparalogy were also uncovered. Moreover, evidence was found for successive HGT events, possibly including those responsible for transmission of the gene among yeast lineages. These occurrences do not seem to be driven by functional diversification of the Fsy1 proteins because Fsy1 homologues from widely distant lineages, including at least one acquired by HGT, appear to have similar biochemical properties. In summary, retracing the evolutionary path of the FSY1 gene brought to light an unparalleled number of independent HGT events involving a single fungal gene. We propose that the turbulent evolutionary history of the gene may be linked to the unique biochemical properties of the encoded transporter, whose predictable effect on fitness may be highly variable. In general, our results support the most recent views suggesting that inter-species HGT may have contributed much more substantially to shape fungal genomes than heretofore assumed.

  2. Plant genetics: gene transfer from parasitic to host plants. (United States)

    Mower, Jeffrey P; Stefanović, Sasa; Young, Gregory J; Palmer, Jeffrey D


    Plant mitochondrial genes are transmitted horizontally across mating barriers with surprising frequency, but the mechanism of transfer is unclear. Here we describe two new cases of horizontal gene transfer, from parasitic flowering plants to their host flowering plants, and present phylogenetic and biogeographic evidence that this occurred as a result of direct physical contact between the two. Our findings complement the discovery that genes can be transferred in the opposite direction, from host to parasite plant.

  3. Distant horizontal gene transfer is rare for multiple families of prokaryotic insertion sequences. (United States)

    Wagner, Andreas; de la Chaux, Nicole


    Horizontal gene transfer in prokaryotes is rampant on short and intermediate evolutionary time scales. It poses a fundamental problem to our ability to reconstruct the evolutionary tree of life. Is it also frequent over long evolutionary distances? To address this question, we analyzed the evolution of 2,091 insertion sequences from all 20 major families in 438 completely sequenced prokaryotic genomes. Specifically, we mapped insertion sequence occurrence on a 16S rDNA tree of the genomes we analyzed, and we also constructed phylogenetic trees of the insertion sequence transposase coding sequences. We found only 30 cases of likely horizontal transfer among distantly related prokaryotic clades. Most of these horizontal transfer events are ancient. Only seven events are recent. Almost all of these transfer events occur between pairs of human pathogens or commensals. If true also for other, non-mobile DNA, the rarity of distant horizontal transfer increases the odds of reliable phylogenetic inference from sequence data.

  4. Estimating the extent of horizontal gene transfer in metagenomic sequences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moya Andrés


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Although the extent of horizontal gene transfer (HGT in complete genomes has been widely studied, its influence in the evolution of natural communities of prokaryotes remains unknown. The availability of metagenomic sequences allows us to address the study of global patterns of prokaryotic evolution in samples from natural communities. However, the methods that have been commonly used for the study of HGT are not suitable for metagenomic samples. Therefore it is important to develop new methods or to adapt existing ones to be used with metagenomic sequences. Results We have created two different methods that are suitable for the study of HGT in metagenomic samples. The methods are based on phylogenetic and DNA compositional approaches, and have allowed us to assess the extent of possible HGT events in metagenomes for the first time. The methods are shown to be compatible and quite precise, although they probably underestimate the number of possible events. Our results show that the phylogenetic method detects HGT in between 0.8% and 1.5% of the sequences, while DNA compositional methods identify putative HGT in between 2% and 8% of the sequences. These ranges are very similar to these found in complete genomes by related approaches. Both methods act with a different sensitivity since they probably target HGT events of different ages: the compositional method mostly identifies recent transfers, while the phylogenetic is more suitable for the detections of older events. Nevertheless, the study of the number of HGT events in metagenomic sequences from different communities shows a consistent trend for both methods: the lower amount is found for the sequences of the Sargasso Sea metagenome, while the higher quantity is found in the whale fall metagenome from the bottom of the ocean. The significance of these observations is discussed. Conclusion The computational approaches that are used to find possible HGT events in complete

  5. Evidence for Horizontal Gene Transfer as Origin of Putrescine Production in Oenococcus oeni RM83▿ (United States)

    Marcobal, Ángela; de las Rivas, Blanca; Moreno-Arribas, M. Victoria; Muñoz, Rosario


    The nucleotide sequence of a 17.2-kb chromosomal DNA fragment containing the odc gene encoding ornithine decarboxylase has been determined in the putrescine producer Oenococcus oeni RM83. This DNA fragment contains 13 open reading frames, including genes coding for five transposases and two phage proteins. This description might represent the first evidence of a horizontal gene transfer event as the origin of a biogenic amine biosynthetic locus. PMID:17056681

  6. The structure of flux transfer events recovered from Cluster data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Hasegawa


    Full Text Available The structure and formation mechanism of a total of five Flux Transfer Events (FTEs, encountered on the equatorward side of the northern cusp by the Cluster spacecraft, with separation of ~5000 km, are studied by applying the Grad-Shafranov (GS reconstruction technique to the events. The technique generates a magnetic field/plasma map of the FTE cross section, using combined magnetic field and plasma data from all four spacecraft, under the assumption that the structure is two-dimensional (2-D and time-independent. The reconstructed FTEs consist of one or more magnetic flux ropes embedded in the magnetopause, suggesting that multiple X-line reconnection was involved in generating the observed FTEs. The dimension of the flux ropes in the direction normal to the magnetopause ranges from about 2000 km to more than 1 RE. The orientation of the flux rope axis can be determined through optimization of the GS map, the result being consistent with those from various single-spacecraft methods. Thanks to this, the unambiguous presence of a strong core field is confirmed, providing evidence for component merging. The amount of magnetic flux contained within each flux rope is calculated from the map and, by dividing it by the time interval between the preceding FTE and the one reconstructed, a lower limit of the reconnection electric field during the creation of the flux rope can be estimated; the estimated value ranges from ~0.11 to ~0.26 mV m-1, with an average of 0.19 mV m-1. This can be translated to the reconnection rate of 0.038 to 0.074, with an average of 0.056. Based on the success of the 2-D model in recovering the observed FTEs, the length of the X-lines is estimated to be at least a few RE.

  7. Flux Transfer Events: 1. generation mechanism for strong southward IMF

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Raeder


    Full Text Available We use a global numerical model of the interaction of the solar wind and the interplanetary magnetic field with Earth's magnetosphere to study the formation process of Flux Transfer Events (FTEs during strong southward IMF. We find that: (i The model produces essentially all observational features expected for FTEs, in particular the bipolar signature of the magnetic field BN component, the correct polarity, duration, and intermittency of that bipolar signature, strong core fields and enhanced core pressure, and flow enhancements; (ii FTEs only develop for large dipole tilt whereas in the case of no dipole tilt steady magnetic reconnection occurs at the dayside magnetopause; (iii the basic process by which FTEs are produced is the sequential generation of new X-lines which makes dayside reconnection inherently time dependent and leads to a modified form of dual or multiple X-line reconnection; (iv the FTE generation process in this model is not dependent on specific assumptions about microscopic processes; (v the average period of FTEs can be explained by simple geometric arguments involving magnetosheath convection; (vi FTEs do not develop in the model if the numerical resolution is too coarse leading to too much numerical diffusion; and (vii FTEs for nearly southward IMF and large dipole tilt, i.e., near solstice, should only develop in the winter hemisphere, which provides a testable prediction of seasonal modulation. The semiannual modulation of intermittent FTE reconnection versus steady reconnection is also expected to modulate magnetospheric and ionospheric convection and may thus contribute to the semiannual variation of geomagnetic activity.

  8. Explained and Unexplained Momentum Impulse Transfer Events (MITEs) (United States)

    Bantel, M.; Cunio, P.; Hendrix, D.; Therien, W.


    Precision orbit determination (OD) and characterization of resident space objects (RSOs) are fundamental components of Space Situational Awareness (SSA). Over 600 days beginning January 1, 2015, ExoAnalytic Solutions collected more than 60 million correlated astrometric measurements of active and inactive resident RSOs in geosynchronous Earth orbit (GEO) and in the near-GEO region using a global network of ground-based telescopes. Orbit Determination (OD) on several inactive RSOs in sub-synchronous (e.g., spent upper stages) and super-synchronous (e.g., retired satellites) orbits revealed occasional momentum impulse transfer events (MITEs) with detectable In-track velocity changes of 0.2 to 10 mm/s. These MITEs could not be explained using the accepted gravitational model and an isotropic spherical solar radiation acceleration. Two additional radiation pressure models were considered: a Yarkovsky effect and an asymmetric radiation pressure (diffuse ellipsoid), adding one and two additional free parameters to the model, respectively. Both models include a radiation pressure component perpendicular to the solar direction and in the RSO's orbital plane. The Yarkovsky and Ellipsoid radiation pressure, in combination with the RSO traversing the Earth's Umbra, can produce a measureable change in the RSO's mean motion; a delta-v of 0.5 mm/s per season is not uncommon. OD was performed using the three radiation pressure models (Sphere, Yarkovsky, and Ellipsoid) on six inactive RSOs having 9,000 to 35,000 observations over 600 days. The Ellipsoid model was in good agreement with 95% of the observations falling within a window of ± 20 microradians, or approximately ±0.8 km, over the entire 600 day duration, which included three equinox seasons. Data collection and analysis of inactive RSOs aids the SSA mission of precision tracking and characterization of debris in the space environment.

  9. Radiopharmaceuticals to monitor the expression of transferred genes in gene transfer therapy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wiebe, L. I. [University of Alberta, Edmonton (Canada). Noujaim Institute for Pharmaceutical Oncology Research


    The development and application of radiopharmaceuticals has, in many instances, been based on the pharmacological properties of therapeutic agents. The molecular biology-biotechnology revolution has had an important impact on treatment of diseases, in part through the reduced toxicity of `biologicals`, in part because of their specificity for interaction at unique molecular sites and in part because of their selective delivery to the target site. Immunotherapeutic approaches include the use of monoclonal antibodies (MABs), MAB-fragments and chemotactic peptides. Such agents currently form the basis of both diagnostic and immunotherapeutic radiopharmaceuticals. More recently, gene transfer techniques have been advanced to the point that a new molecular approach, gene therapy, has become a reality. Gene therapy offers an opportunity to attack disease at its most fundamental level. The therapeutic mechanism is based on the expression of a specific gene or genes, the product of which will invoke immunological, receptor-based or enzyme-based therapeutic modalities. Several approaches to gene therapy of cancer have been envisioned, the most clinically-advanced concepts involving the introduction of genes that will encode for molecular targets nor normally found in healthy mammalian cells. A number of gene therapy clinical trials are based on the introduction of the Herpes simplex virus type-1 (HSV-1) gene that encodes for viral thymidine kinase (tk+). Once HSV-1 tk+ is expressed in the target (cancer) cell, therapy can be effected by the administration of a highly molecularly-targeted and systemically non-toxic antiviral drug such as ganciclovir. The development of radiodiagnostic imaging in gene therapy will be reviewed, using HSV-1 tk+ and radioiodinated IVFRU as a basis for development of the theme. Molecular targets that could be exploited in gene therapy, other than tk+, will be identified

  10. Computational and phylogenetic validation of nematode horizontal gene transfer


    Bird David; Scholl Elizabeth H


    Abstract Sequencing of expressed genes has shown that nematodes, particularly the plant-parasitic nematodes, have genes purportedly acquired from other kingdoms by horizontal gene transfer. The prevailing orthodoxy is that such transfer has been a driving force in the evolution of niche specificity, and a recent paper in BMC Evolutionary Biology that presents a detailed phylogenetic analysis of cellulase genes in the free-living nematode Pristionchus pacificus at the species, genus and family...

  11. Plant expansins in bacteria and fungi: evolution by horizontal gene transfer and independent domain fusion. (United States)

    Nikolaidis, Nikolas; Doran, Nicole; Cosgrove, Daniel J


    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) has been described as a common mechanism of transferring genetic material between prokaryotes, whereas genetic transfers from eukaryotes to prokaryotes have been rarely documented. Here we report a rare case of HGT in which plant expansin genes that code for plant cell-wall loosening proteins were transferred from plants to bacteria, fungi, and amoebozoa. In several cases, the species in which the expansin gene was found is either in intimate association with plants or is a known plant pathogen. Our analyses suggest that at least two independent genetic transfers occurred from plants to bacteria and fungi. These events were followed by multiple HGT events within bacteria and fungi. We have also observed that in bacteria expansin genes have been independently fused to DNA fragments that code for an endoglucanase domain or for a carbohydrate binding module, pointing to functional convergence at the molecular level. Furthermore, the functional similarities between microbial expansins and their plant xenologs suggest that these proteins mediate microbial-plant interactions by altering the plant cell wall and therefore may provide adaptive advantages to these species. The evolution of these nonplant expansins represents a unique case in which bacteria and fungi have found innovative and adaptive ways to interact with and infect plants by acquiring genes from their host. This evolutionary paradigm suggests that despite their low frequency such HGT events may have significantly contributed to the evolution of prokaryotic and eukaryotic species.

  12. Exact Algorithms for Duplication-Transfer-Loss Reconciliation with Non-Binary Gene Trees. (United States)

    Kordi, Misagh; Bansal, Mukul S


    Duplication-Transfer-Loss (DTL) reconciliation is a powerful method for studying gene family evolution in the presence of horizontal gene transfer. DTL reconciliation seeks to reconcile gene trees with species trees by postulating speciation, duplication, transfer, and loss events. Efficient algorithms exist for finding optimal DTL reconciliations when the gene tree is binary. In practice, however, gene trees are often non-binary due to uncertainty in the gene tree topologies, and DTL reconciliation with non-binary gene trees is known to be NP-hard. In this paper, we present the first exact algorithms for DTL reconciliation with non-binary gene trees. Specifically, we (i) show that the DTL reconciliation problem for non-binary gene trees is fixed-parameter tractable in the maximum degree of the gene tree, (ii) present an exponential-time, but in-practice efficient, algorithm to track and enumerate all optimal binary resolutions of a non-binary input gene tree, and (iii) apply our algorithms to a large empirical data set of over 4700 gene trees from 100 species to study the impact of gene tree uncertainty on DTL-reconciliation and to demonstrate the applicability and utility of our algorithms. The new techniques and algorithms introduced in this paper will help biologists avoid incorrect evolutionary inferences caused by gene tree uncertainty.

  13. Inter-genomic displacement via lateral gene transfer of bacterial trp operons in an overall context of vertical genealogy


    Keyhani Nemat O; Song Jian; Bonner Carol A; Xie Gary; Jensen Roy A


    Abstract Background The growing conviction that lateral gene transfer plays a significant role in prokaryote genealogy opens up a need for comprehensive evaluations of gene-enzyme systems on a case-by-case basis. Genes of tryptophan biosynthesis are frequently organized as whole-pathway operons, an attribute that is expected to facilitate multi-gene transfer in a single step. We have asked whether events of lateral gene transfer are sufficient to have obscured our ability to track the vertica...

  14. Gene transfer for congestive heart failure: update 2013. (United States)

    Tang, Tong; Hammond, H Kirk


    Congestive heart failure is a major cause of morbidity and mortality with increasing social and economic costs. There have been no new high impact therapeutic agents for this devastating disease for more than a decade. However, many pivotal regulators of cardiac function have been identified using cardiac-directed transgene expression and gene deletion in preclinical studies. Some of these increase function of the failing heart. Altering the expression of these pivotal regulators using gene transfer is now either being tested in clinical gene transfer trials, or soon will be. In this review, we summarize recent progress in cardiac gene transfer for clinical congestive heart failure.


    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    FU Jian-xin; CHEN Zi-xing; CEN Jian-nong; WANG Wei; RUAN Chang-geng


    Objective: To establish an efficient and safe gene transfer system mediated by retrovirus for gene marking and gene therapy of human leukemia. Method: The retroviral vector LXSN, containing the neomycin resistance (NeoR) gene, was transferred into amphotropic packaging cells GP+envAm12 by liposome transfection or by ecotropic retrovirus transduction. Amphotropic retrovirus in supernatants with higher titer was used to infect human leukemic cell lines NB4, U937, and THP-1.The efficiency of gene transfer was assayed on colonies formed by transduced K562 cells. Results: The titer of DOSPER directly transfected GP+envAm12 cells determined on NIH3T3 cells was 8.0×105 CFU/ml, while that of producer infected with retrovirus was 1.6×107CFU/ml. Integration of NeoR gene into all leukemia cells was confirmed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR).Absence of replication-competent virus was proved by both nested PCR for env gene and marker gene rescue assay. Gene transfer with the efficiency as high as 93.3 to 100% in K562 cells was verified by seminested PCR for integrated NeoR gene on colonies after 7 days' culture.Conclusion: The efficiency and safety of retrovirus mediated gene transfer system might provide an optimal system in gene therapy for leukemia or genetic diseases.

  16. Problems associated with gene transfer and opportunities for microgravity environments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tennessen, D.J. [Floriculture and Ornamental Horticulture Cornell University, Ithaca, New York14853 (United States)


    The method of crop improvement by gene transfer is becoming increasingly routine with transgenic foods and ornamental crops now being marketed to consumers. However, biological processes of plants, and the physical barriers of current protocols continue to limit the application of gene transfer in many commercial crops. The goal of this paper is to outline the current limitations of gene transfer and to hypothesize possible opportunities for use of microgravity to overcome such limitations. The limitations detailed in this paper include host-range specificity of {ital Agrobacterium} mediated transformation, probability of gene insertion, position effects of the inserted genes, gene copy number, stability of foreign gene expression in host plants, and regeneration of recalcitrant plant species. Microgravity offers an opportunity for gene transfer where cell growth kinetics, DNA synthesis, and genetic recombination rates can be altered. Such biological conditions may enhance the ability for recombination of reporter genes and other genes of interest to agriculture. Proposed studies would be useful for understanding instability of foreign gene expression and may lead to stable transformed plants. Other aspects of gene transfer in microgravity are discussed. {copyright} {ital 1997 American Institute of Physics.}

  17. Pollen irradiation and possible gene transfer in Nicotiana species

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Engvild, Kjeld Christensen


    Progeny from crosses of Nicotiana langsdorffii with gamma irradiated pollen of Nicotiana alata ‘Crimson Bedder’ showed skewed segregation in the F2 favoring the maternal parent. This is probably not gene transfer in a strict sense, rather just an extreme case of reduced transmission of irradiated...... chromosomes, leading to massive overrepresentation of maternal genes. Gene transfer or mutational loss may explain some anomalous F1 plants. Segregation in the F2 progeny showed the presence of several genes from the irradiated pollen. Crosses of Nicotiana sylvestris, N. plumbaginifolia N. paniculata......, and Petunia parodii with irradiated pollen from N. alata and Petunia hybrida showed no evidence of gene transfer, nor did experiments with irradiated mentor pollen. This indicates that gene transfer with irradiated pollen between non-crossing species or between species giving sterile hybrids is probably...

  18. On the Complexity of Duplication-Transfer-Loss Reconciliation with Non-Binary Gene Trees. (United States)

    Kordi, Misagh; Bansal, Mukul


    Duplication-Transfer-Loss (DTL) reconciliation has emerged as a powerful technique for studying gene family evolution in the presence of horizontal gene transfer. DTL reconciliation takes as input a gene family phylogeny and the corresponding species phylogeny, and reconciles the two by postulating speciation, gene duplication, horizontal gene transfer, and gene loss events. Efficient algorithms exist for finding optimal DTL reconciliations when the gene tree is binary. However, gene trees are frequently non-binary. With such non-binary gene trees, the reconciliation problem seeks to find a binary resolution of the gene tree that minimizes the reconciliation cost. Given the prevalence of non-binary gene trees, many efficient algorithms have been developed for this problem in the context of the simpler Duplication-Loss (DL) reconciliation model. Yet, no efficient algorithms exist for DTL reconciliation with non-binary gene trees and the complexity of the problem remains unknown. In this work, we resolve this open question by showing that the problem is, in fact, NP-hard. Our reduction applies to both the dated and undated formulations of DTL reconciliation. By resolving this long-standing open problem, this work will spur the development of both exact and heuristic algorithms for this important problem.

  19. Multiple inter-kingdom horizontal gene transfers in the evolution of the phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase gene family.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yingmei Peng

    Full Text Available Pepcase is a gene encoding phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase that exists in bacteria, archaea and plants,playing an important role in plant metabolism and development. Most plants have two or more pepcase genes belonging to two gene sub-families, while only one gene exists in other organisms. Previous research categorized one plant pepcase gene as plant-type pepcase (PTPC while the other as bacteria-type pepcase (BTPC because of its similarity with the pepcase gene found in bacteria. Phylogenetic reconstruction showed that PTPC is the ancestral lineage of plant pepcase, and that all bacteria, protistpepcase and BTPC in plants are derived from a lineage of pepcase closely related with PTPC in algae. However, their phylogeny contradicts the species tree and traditional chronology of organism evolution. Because the diversification of bacteria occurred much earlier than the origin of plants, presumably all bacterialpepcase derived from the ancestral PTPC of algal plants after divergingfrom the ancestor of vascular plant PTPC. To solve this contradiction, we reconstructed the phylogeny of pepcase gene family. Our result showed that both PTPC and BTPC are derived from an ancestral lineage of gamma-proteobacteriapepcases, possibly via an ancient inter-kingdom horizontal gene transfer (HGT from bacteria to the eukaryotic common ancestor of plants, protists and cellular slime mold. Our phylogenetic analysis also found 48other pepcase genes originated from inter-kingdom HGTs. These results imply that inter-kingdom HGTs played important roles in the evolution of the pepcase gene family and furthermore that HGTsare a more frequent evolutionary event than previouslythought.

  20. Nonviral gene transfer strategies to promote bone regeneration. (United States)

    Im, Gun-Il


    Despite the inherent ability of bone to regenerate itself, there are a number of clinical situations in which complete bone regeneration fails to occur. In view of shortcomings of conventional treatment, gene therapy may have a place in cases of critical-size bone loss that cannot be properly treated with current medical or surgical treatment. The purpose of this review is to provide an overview of gene therapy in general, nonviral techniques of gene transfer including physical and chemical methods, RNA-based therapy, therapeutic genes to be transferred for bone regeneration, route of application including ex vivo application, and direct gene therapy approaches to regenerate bone.

  1. Transfer of engineered genes from crop to wild plants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bagger Jørgensen, Rikke; Hauser, T.P.; Mikkelsen, T.R.;


    The escape of engineered genes - genes inserted using recombinant DNA techniques - from cultivated plants to wild or weedy relatives has raised concern about possible risks to the environment or to health. The media have added considerably to public concern by suggesting that such gene escape...... is a new and rather unexpected phenomenon. However, transfer of engineered genes between plants is not at-all surprising, because it is mediated by exactly the same mechanisms as those responsible for transferring endogenous plant genes: it takes place by sexual crosses, with pollen as the carrier...

  2. Gene Transfer Strategies to Promote Chondrogenesis and Cartilage Regeneration. (United States)

    Im, Gun-Il


    Gene transfer has been used experimentally to promote chondrogenesis and cartilage regeneration. While it is controversial to apply gene therapy for nonlethal conditions such as cartilage defect, there is a possibility that the transfer of therapeutic transgenes may dramatically increase the effectiveness of cell therapy and reduce the quantity of cells that are needed to regenerate cartilage. Single or combination of growth factors and transcription factors has been transferred to mesenchymal stem cells or articular chondrocytes using both nonviral and viral approaches. The current challenge for the clinical applications of genetically modified cells is ensuring the safety of gene therapy while guaranteeing effectiveness. Viral gene delivery methods have been mainstays currently with enhanced safety features being recently refined. On the other hand, efficiency has been greatly improved in nonviral delivery. This review summarizes the history and recent update on the gene transfer to enhance chondrogenesis from stem cells or articular chondrocytes.

  3. In silico Analysis of the Potential Infection Mechanisms of Magnaporthe grisea from Horizontal Gene Transfer Hypothesis

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Chunyang Li; Ying Wang; Hao Peng; Hejiao Bian; Mingwei Min; Longfei Chen; Qian Liu; Jinku Bao


    Horizontal gene transfer(HGT)has long been considered as a principal force for an organism to gain novel genes in genome evolution. Homology search, phylogenetic analysis and nucleotide composition analysis are three major objective approaches to arguably determine the occurrence and directionality of HGT. Here, 21 genes that possess the potential to horizontal transfer were acquired from the whole genome of Magnaporthe grisea according to annotation, among which three can-didate genes(corresponding protein accession numbers are EAA55123, EAA47200 and EAA52136)were selected for further analysis. According to BLAST homology results, we subsequently conducted phylogenetic analysis of the three candidate HGT genes. Moreover, nucleotide composition analysis was conducted to further validate these HGTs. In addition, the functions of the three candidate genes were searched in COG database. Consequently, we conclude that the gene encoding protein EAA55123 is transferred from Clostridium perfringens. Another HGT event is between EAA52136 and a certain metazoan's corresponding gene, but the direction remains uncertain. Yet, EAA47200 is not a transferred gene.


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Howard Ochman


    The aims of this research were to elucidate the role and extent of lateral transfer in the differentiation of bacterial strains and species, and to assess the impact of gene transfer on the evolution of bacterial genomes. The ultimate goal of the project is to examine the dynamics of a core set of protein-coding genes (i.e., those that are distributed universally among Bacteria) by developing conserved primers that would allow their amplification and sequencing in any bacterial taxa. In addition, we adopted a bioinformatic approach to elucidate the extent of lateral gene transfer in sequenced genome.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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


    , dramatically affecting the enzymes of core pathways, particularly amino acid and sugar metabolism, but also providing new genes of potential adaptive significance in the life of parasites. A broad range of prokaryotic donors is involved in such transfers, but there is clear and significant enrichment......BACKGROUND: The influence of lateral gene transfer on gene origins and biology in eukaryotes is poorly understood compared with those of prokaryotes. A number of independent investigations focusing on specific genes, individual genomes, or specific functional categories from various eukaryotes have...... for bacterial groups that share the same habitats, including the human microbiota, as the parasites investigated. CONCLUSIONS: Our data show that ecology and lifestyle strongly influence gene origins and opportunities for gene transfer and reveal that, although the outlines of the core eukaryotic metabolism...

  6. The recent transfer of a homing endonuclease gene (United States)

    Haugen, Peik; Wikmark, Odd-Gunnar; Vader, Anna; Coucheron, Dag H.; Sjøttem, Eva; Johansen, Steinar D.


    The myxomycete Didymium iridis (isolate Panama 2) contains a mobile group I intron named Dir.S956-1 after position 956 in the nuclear small subunit (SSU) rRNA gene. The intron is efficiently spread through homing by the intron-encoded homing endonuclease I-DirI. Homing endonuclease genes (HEGs) usually spread with their associated introns as a unit, but infrequently also spread independent of introns (or inteins). Clear examples of HEG mobility are however sparse. Here, we provide evidence for the transfer of a HEG into a group I intron named Dir.S956-2 that is inserted into the SSU rDNA of the Costa Rica 8 isolate of D.iridis. Similarities between intron sequences that flank the HEG and rDNA sequences that flank the intron (the homing endonuclease recognition sequence) suggest that the HEG invaded the intron during the recent evolution in a homing-like event. Dir.S956-2 is inserted into the same SSU site as Dir.S956-1. Remarkably, the two group I introns encode distantly related splicing ribozymes with phylogenetically related HEGs inserted on the opposite strands of different peripheral loop regions. The HEGs are both interrupted by small spliceosomal introns that must be removed during RNA maturation. PMID:15891115

  7. Molecular evidence of lateral gene transfer in rpoB gene of Mycobacterium yongonense strains via multilocus sequence analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Byoung-Jun Kim

    Full Text Available Recently, a novel species, Mycobacterium yongonense (DSM 45126(T, was introduced and while it is phylogenetically related to Mycobacterium intracellulare, it has a distinct RNA polymerase β-subunit gene (rpoB sequence that is identical to that of Mycobacterium parascrofulaceum, which is a distantly related scotochromogen, which suggests the acquisition of the rpoB gene via a potential lateral gene transfer (LGT event. The aims of this study are to prove the presence of the LGT event in the rpoB gene of the M. yongonense strains via multilocus sequence analysis (MLSA. In order to determine the potential of an LGT event in the rpoB gene of the M. yongonense, the MLSA based on full rpoB sequences (3447 or 3450 bp and on partial sequences of five other targets [16S rRNA (1383 or 1395 bp, hsp65 (603 bp, dnaJ (192 bp, recA (1053 bp, and sodA (501 bp] were conducted. Incongruences between the phylogenetic analysis of the full rpoB and the five other genes in a total of three M. yongonense strains [two clinical strains (MOTT-12 and MOTT-27 and one type strain (DSM 45126(T] were observed, suggesting that rpoB gene of three M. yongonense strains may have been acquired very recently via an LGT event from M. parascrofulaceum, which is a distantly related scotochromogen.

  8. In vivo particle-mediated gene transfer for cancer therapy. (United States)

    Rakhmilevich, A L; Yang, N S


    During the past several years, particle-mediated delivery techniques have been developed as a nonviral technology for gene transfer (1-7). For mammalian somatic tissues, this technology, popularly known as the gene gun method, has been shown effective for transfection of skin, liver, pancreas, muscle, spleen, and other organs in vivo (3,4), brain, mammary, and leukocyte primary cultures or tissue explants ex vivo (2,5-7), and a wide range of cell lines in vitro (3,6,7). In this chapter, we describe the general principles, mechanisms, protocols, and uses of the particle-mediated gene transfer technology for in vivo gene transfer, mainly into skin tissues. Specific applications of this technology to basic studies in molecular biology as well as to gene therapy and genetic immunization against cancer are addressed.

  9. Carotenoids in unexpected places: gall midges, lateral gene transfer, and carotenoid biosynthesis in animals. (United States)

    Cobbs, Cassidy; Heath, Jeremy; Stireman, John O; Abbot, Patrick


    Carotenoids are conjugated isoprenoid molecules with many important physiological functions in organisms, including roles in photosynthesis, oxidative stress reduction, vision, diapause, photoperiodism, and immunity. Until recently, it was believed that only plants, microorganisms, and fungi were capable of synthesizing carotenoids and that animals acquired them from their diet, but recent studies have demonstrated that two arthropods (pea aphid and spider mite) possess a pair of genes homologous to those required for the first step of carotenoid biosynthesis. Absent in all other known animal genomes, these genes appear to have been acquired by aphids and spider mites in one or several lateral gene transfer events from a fungal donor. We report the third case of fungal carotenoid biosynthesis gene homologs in an arthropod: flies from the family Cecidomyiidae, commonly known as gall midges. Using phylogenetic analyses we show that it is unlikely that lycopene cyclase/phytoene synthase and phytoene desaturase homologs were transferred singly to an ancient arthropod ancestor; instead we propose that genes were transferred independently from related fungal donors after divergence of the major arthropod lineages. We also examine variation in intron placement and copy number of the carotenoid genes that may underlie function in the midges. This trans-kingdom transfer of carotenoid genes may represent a key innovation, underlying the evolution of phytophagy and plant-galling in gall midges and facilitating their extensive diversification across plant lineages.

  10. Two Horizontally Transferred Xenobiotic Resistance Gene Clusters Associated with Detoxification of Benzoxazolinones by Fusarium Species (United States)

    Glenn, Anthony E.; Davis, C. Britton; Gao, Minglu; Gold, Scott E.; Mitchell, Trevor R.; Proctor, Robert H.; Stewart, Jane E.; Snook, Maurice E.


    Microbes encounter a broad spectrum of antimicrobial compounds in their environments and often possess metabolic strategies to detoxify such xenobiotics. We have previously shown that Fusarium verticillioides, a fungal pathogen of maize known for its production of fumonisin mycotoxins, possesses two unlinked loci, FDB1 and FDB2, necessary for detoxification of antimicrobial compounds produced by maize, including the γ-lactam 2-benzoxazolinone (BOA). In support of these earlier studies, microarray analysis of F. verticillioides exposed to BOA identified the induction of multiple genes at FDB1 and FDB2, indicating the loci consist of gene clusters. One of the FDB1 cluster genes encoded a protein having domain homology to the metallo-β-lactamase (MBL) superfamily. Deletion of this gene (MBL1) rendered F. verticillioides incapable of metabolizing BOA and thus unable to grow on BOA-amended media. Deletion of other FDB1 cluster genes, in particular AMD1 and DLH1, did not affect BOA degradation. Phylogenetic analyses and topology testing of the FDB1 and FDB2 cluster genes suggested two horizontal transfer events among fungi, one being transfer of FDB1 from Fusarium to Colletotrichum, and the second being transfer of the FDB2 cluster from Fusarium to Aspergillus. Together, the results suggest that plant-derived xenobiotics have exerted evolutionary pressure on these fungi, leading to horizontal transfer of genes that enhance fitness or virulence. PMID:26808652

  11. Global Analysis of Horizontal Gene Transfer in Fusarium verticillioides (United States)

    The co-occurrence of microbes within plants and other specialized niches may facilitate horizontal gene transfer (HGT) affecting host-pathogen interactions. We recently identified fungal-to-fungal HGTs involving metabolic gene clusters. For a global analysis of HGTs in the maize pathogen Fusarium ve...

  12. Regulation of mammalian horizontal gene transfer by apoptotic DNA fragmentation (United States)

    Yan, B; Wang, H; Li, F; Li, C-Y


    Previously it was shown that horizontal DNA transfer between mammalian cells can occur through the uptake of apoptotic bodies, where genes from the apoptotic cells were transferred to neighbouring cells phagocytosing the apoptotic bodies. The regulation of this process is poorly understood. It was shown that the ability of cells as recipient of horizontally transferred DNA was enhanced by deficiency of p53 or p21. However, little is known with regard to the regulation of DNA from donor apoptotic cells. Here we report that the DNA fragmentation factor/caspase-activated DNase (DFF/CAD), which is the endonuclease responsible for DNA fragmentation during apoptosis, plays a significant role in regulation of horizontal DNA transfer. Cells with inhibited DFF/CAD function are poor donors for horizontal gene transfer (HGT) while their ability of being recipients of HGT is not affected. PMID:17146478

  13. Phylogenomic analysis demonstrates a pattern of rare and ancient horizontal gene transfer between plants and fungi. (United States)

    Richards, Thomas A; Soanes, Darren M; Foster, Peter G; Leonard, Guy; Thornton, Christopher R; Talbot, Nicholas J


    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) describes the transmission of genetic material across species boundaries and is an important evolutionary phenomenon in the ancestry of many microbes. The role of HGT in plant evolutionary history is, however, largely unexplored. Here, we compare the genomes of six plant species with those of 159 prokaryotic and eukaryotic species and identify 1689 genes that show the highest similarity to corresponding genes from fungi. We constructed a phylogeny for all 1689 genes identified and all homolog groups available from the rice (Oryza sativa) genome (3177 gene families) and used these to define 14 candidate plant-fungi HGT events. Comprehensive phylogenetic analyses of these 14 data sets, using methods that account for site rate heterogeneity, demonstrated support for nine HGT events, demonstrating an infrequent pattern of HGT between plants and fungi. Five HGTs were fungi-to-plant transfers and four were plant-to-fungi HGTs. None of the fungal-to-plant HGTs involved angiosperm recipients. These results alter the current view of organismal barriers to HGT, suggesting that phagotrophy, the consumption of a whole cell by another, is not necessarily a prerequisite for HGT between eukaryotes. Putative functional annotation of the HGT candidate genes suggests that two fungi-to-plant transfers have added phenotypes important for life in a soil environment. Our study suggests that genetic exchange between plants and fungi is exceedingly rare, particularly among the angiosperms, but has occurred during their evolutionary history and added important metabolic traits to plant lineages.

  14. Horizontal gene transfer between Wolbachia and the mosquito Aedes aegypti

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Walker Thomas


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The evolutionary importance of horizontal gene transfer (HGT from Wolbachia endosymbiotic bacteria to their eukaryotic hosts is a topic of considerable interest and debate. Recent transfers of genome fragments from Wolbachia into insect chromosomes have been reported, but it has been argued that these fragments may be on an evolutionary trajectory to degradation and loss. Results We have discovered a case of HGT, involving two adjacent genes, between the genomes of Wolbachia and the currently Wolbachia-uninfected mosquito Aedes aegypti, an important human disease vector. The lower level of sequence identity between Wolbachia and insect, the transcription of all the genes involved, and the fact that we have identified homologs of the two genes in another Aedes species (Ae. mascarensis, suggest that these genes are being expressed after an extended evolutionary period since horizontal transfer, and therefore that the transfer has functional significance. The association of these genes with Wolbachia prophage regions also provides a mechanism for the transfer. Conclusion The data support the argument that HGT between Wolbachia endosymbiotic bacteria and their hosts has produced evolutionary innovation.

  15. Extensive inter-domain lateral gene transfer in the evolution of the human commensal Methanosphaera stadtmanae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mor Nadia Lurie-Weinberger


    Full Text Available Methanosphaera stadtmanae is a commensal methanogenic archaeon found in the human gut. As most of its niche-neighbors are bacteria, it is expected that lateral gene transfer (LGT from bacteria might have contributed to the evolutionary history of this organism. We performed a phylogenomic survey of putative lateral gene transfer events in M. stadtmanae, using a phylogenetic pipeline. Our analysis indicates that a substantial fraction of the proteins of M. stadtmanae are inferred to have been involved in inter-domain LGT. Laterally acquired genes have had a large contribution to surface functions, by providing novel glycosyltransferase functions. In addition, several ABC transporters seem to be of bacterial origin, including the molybdate transporter. Thus, bacterial genes contributed to the adaptation of M. stadtmanae to a host dependent lifestyle by allowing a larger variation in surface structures and increasing transport efficiency in the gut niche which is diverse and competitive

  16. RANGE: Gene Transfer of Reversibly Controlled Polycistronic Genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yiwei Chen


    Full Text Available We developed a single vector recombinant adeno-associated viral (rAAV expression system for spatial and reversible control of polycistronic gene expression. Our approach (i integrates the advantages of the tetracycline (Tet-controlled transcriptional silencer tTSKid and the self-cleaving 2A peptide bridge, (ii combines essential regulatory components as an autoregulatory loop, (iii simplifies the gene delivery scheme, and (iv regulates multiple genes in a synchronized manner. Controlled by an upstream Tet-responsive element (TRE, both the ubiquitous chicken β-actin promoter (CAG and the neuron-specific synapsin-1 promoter (Syn could regulate expression of tTSKid together with two 2A-linked reporter genes. Transduction in vitro exhibited maximally 50-fold regulation by doxycycline (Dox. Determined by gene delivery method as well as promoter, highly specific tissues were transduced in vivo. Bioluminescence imaging (BLI visualized reversible “ON/OFF” gene switches over repeated “Doxy-Cycling” in living mice. Thus, the reversible rAAV-mediated N-cistronic gene expression system, termed RANGE, may serve as a versatile tool to achieve reversible polycistronic gene regulation for the study of gene function as well as gene therapy.

  17. RANGE: Gene Transfer of Reversibly Controlled Polycistronic Genes. (United States)

    Chen, Yiwei; Cao, Liji; Luo, Chonglin; Ditzel, Désirée Aw; Peter, Jörg; Sprengel, Rolf


    We developed a single vector recombinant adeno-associated viral (rAAV) expression system for spatial and reversible control of polycistronic gene expression. Our approach (i) integrates the advantages of the tetracycline (Tet)-controlled transcriptional silencer tTS(Kid) and the self-cleaving 2A peptide bridge, (ii) combines essential regulatory components as an autoregulatory loop, (iii) simplifies the gene delivery scheme, and (iv) regulates multiple genes in a synchronized manner. Controlled by an upstream Tet-responsive element (TRE), both the ubiquitous chicken β-actin promoter (CAG) and the neuron-specific synapsin-1 promoter (Syn) could regulate expression of tTS(Kid) together with two 2A-linked reporter genes. Transduction in vitro exhibited maximally 50-fold regulation by doxycycline (Dox). Determined by gene delivery method as well as promoter, highly specific tissues were transduced in vivo. Bioluminescence imaging (BLI) visualized reversible "ON/OFF" gene switches over repeated "Doxy-Cycling" in living mice. Thus, the reversible rAAV-mediated N-cistronic gene expression system, termed RANGE, may serve as a versatile tool to achieve reversible polycistronic gene regulation for the study of gene function as well as gene therapy.Molecular Therapy - Nucleic Acids (2013) 2, e85; doi:10.1038/mtna.2013.15; published online 9 April 2013.

  18. Agrobacterium-mediated gene transfer to Chrysanthemum.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wordragen, van M.F.


    Genetic manipulation of plants is a technique that enables us to add to the plant genome, in a precise and well controlled manner, one or a few new genes, coding for desirable traits. In contrast to this, the conventional method for the introduction of new properties in plants, by cross breeding, is

  19. [Gene transfer as treatment for metabolic inherited liver diseases (United States)

    Godoy, J L


    OBJECTIVE: To study gene transfer looking for its future clinical application in the treatment of metabolic inherited liver diseases. METHODS: Bibliographic review about the subject. RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS: Gene transfer into the liver would be an alternative to liver transplantation to treat some inherited metabolic diseases. Various vectors have been employed for gene transfer, including retrovirus vectors, whose integration into the chromosomal DNA would allow stable long term expression of the transgene. The integration of retrovirus vectors into the genoma of the target cell is only possible during mitosis. Therefore, these vectors must be delivered during hepatic regeneration induced by partial hepatectomy, for example. Another obstacle to be overcome is the extra hepatic dissemination of retrovirus, in particular to the germinals cells, due to the risk of changing the genetical heritage of the progeniture.

  20. Ancient horizontal gene transfer from bacteria enhances biosynthetic capabilities of fungi.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Imke Schmitt

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Polyketides are natural products with a wide range of biological functions and pharmaceutical applications. Discovery and utilization of polyketides can be facilitated by understanding the evolutionary processes that gave rise to the biosynthetic machinery and the natural product potential of extant organisms. Gene duplication and subfunctionalization, as well as horizontal gene transfer are proposed mechanisms in the evolution of biosynthetic gene clusters. To explain the amount of homology in some polyketide synthases in unrelated organisms such as bacteria and fungi, interkingdom horizontal gene transfer has been evoked as the most likely evolutionary scenario. However, the origin of the genes and the direction of the transfer remained elusive. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We used comparative phylogenetics to infer the ancestor of a group of polyketide synthase genes involved in antibiotic and mycotoxin production. We aligned keto synthase domain sequences of all available fungal 6-methylsalicylic acid (6-MSA-type PKSs and their closest bacterial relatives. To assess the role of symbiotic fungi in the evolution of this gene we generated 24 6-MSA synthase sequence tags from lichen-forming fungi. Our results support an ancient horizontal gene transfer event from an actinobacterial source into ascomycete fungi, followed by gene duplication. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Given that actinobacteria are unrivaled producers of biologically active compounds, such as antibiotics, it appears particularly promising to study biosynthetic genes of actinobacterial origin in fungi. The large number of 6-MSA-type PKS sequences found in lichen-forming fungi leads us hypothesize that the evolution of typical lichen compounds, such as orsellinic acid derivatives, was facilitated by the gain of this bacterial polyketide synthase.

  1. Important aspects of placental-specific gene transfer. (United States)

    Kaufman, Melissa R; Albers, Renee E; Keoni, Chanel; Kulkarni-Datar, Kashmira; Natale, David R; Brown, Thomas L


    The placenta is a unique and highly complex organ that develops only during pregnancy and is essential for growth and survival of the developing fetus. The placenta provides the vital exchange of gases and wastes, the necessary nutrients for fetal development, acts as immune barrier that protects against maternal rejection, and produces numerous hormones and growth factors that promote fetal maturity to regulate pregnancy until parturition. Abnormal placental development is a major underlying cause of pregnancy-associated disorders that often result in preterm birth. Defects in placental stem cell propagation, growth, and differentiation are the major factors that affect embryonic and fetal well-being and dramatically increase the risk of pregnancy complications. Understanding the processes that regulate placentation is important in determining the underlying factors behind abnormal placental development. The ability to manipulate genes in a placenta-specific manner provides a unique tool to analyze development and eliminates potentially confounding results that can occur with traditional gene knockouts. Trophoblast stem cells and mouse embryos are not overly amenable to traditional gene transfer techniques. Most viral vectors, however, have a low infection rate and often lead to mosaic transgenesis. Although the traditional method of embryo transfer is intrauterine surgical implantation, the methodology reported here, combining lentiviral blastocyst infection and nonsurgical embryo transfer, leads to highly efficient and placental-specific gene transfer. Numerous advantages of our optimized procedures include increased investigator safety, a reduction in animal stress, rapid and noninvasive embryo transfer, and higher a rate of pregnancy and live birth.

  2. The interconnection between biofilm formation and horizontal gene transfer. (United States)

    Madsen, Jonas Stenløkke; Burmølle, Mette; Hansen, Lars Hestbjerg; Sørensen, Søren Johannes


    Recent research has revealed that horizontal gene transfer and biofilm formation are connected processes. Although published research investigating this interconnectedness is still limited, we will review this subject in order to highlight the potential of these observations because of their believed importance in the understanding of the adaptation and subsequent evolution of social traits in bacteria. Here, we discuss current evidence for such interconnectedness centred on plasmids. Horizontal transfer rates are typically higher in biofilm communities compared with those in planktonic states. Biofilms, furthermore, promote plasmid stability and may enhance the host range of mobile genetic elements that are transferred horizontally. Plasmids, on the other hand, are very well suited to promote the evolution of social traits such as biofilm formation. This, essentially, transpires because plasmids are independent replicons that enhance their own success by promoting inter-bacterial interactions. They typically also carry genes that heighten their hosts' direct fitness. Furthermore, current research shows that the so-called mafia traits encoded on mobile genetic elements can enforce bacteria to maintain stable social interactions. It also indicates that horizontal gene transfer ultimately enhances the relatedness of bacteria carrying the mobile genetic elements of the same origin. The perspective of this review extends to an overall interconnectedness between horizontal gene transfer, mobile genetic elements and social evolution of bacteria.

  3. A gene in the process of endosymbiotic transfer.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kateřina Jiroutová

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The endosymbiotic birth of organelles is accompanied by massive transfer of endosymbiont genes to the eukaryotic host nucleus. In the centric diatom Thalassiosira pseudonana the Psb28 protein is encoded in the plastid genome while a second version is nuclear-encoded and possesses a bipartite N-terminal presequence necessary to target the protein into the diatom complex plastid. Thus it can represent a gene captured during endosymbiotic gene transfer. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: To specify the origin of nuclear- and plastid-encoded Psb28 in T. pseudonana we have performed extensive phylogenetic analyses of both mentioned genes. We have also experimentally tested the intracellular location of the nuclear-encoded Psb28 protein (nuPsb28 through transformation of the diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum with the gene in question fused to EYFP. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We show here that both versions of the psb28 gene in T. pseudonana are transcribed. We also provide experimental evidence for successful targeting of the nuPsb28 fused with EYFP to the diatom complex plastid. Extensive phylogenetic analyses demonstrate that nucleotide composition of the analyzed genes deeply influences the tree topology and that appropriate methods designed to deal with a compositional bias of the sequences and the long branch attraction artefact (LBA need to be used to overcome this obstacle. We propose that nuclear psb28 in T. pseudonana is a duplicate of a plastid localized version, and that it has been transferred from its endosymbiont.

  4. Expression of a transferred nuclear gene in a mitochondrial genome

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    Yichun Qiu


    Full Text Available Transfer of mitochondrial genes to the nucleus, and subsequent gain of regulatory elements for expression, is an ongoing evolutionary process in plants. Many examples have been characterized, which in some cases have revealed sources of mitochondrial targeting sequences and cis-regulatory elements. In contrast, there have been no reports of a nuclear gene that has undergone intracellular transfer to the mitochondrial genome and become expressed. Here we show that the orf164 gene in the mitochondrial genome of several Brassicaceae species, including Arabidopsis, is derived from the nuclear ARF17 gene that codes for an auxin responsive protein and is present across flowering plants. Orf164 corresponds to a portion of ARF17, and the nucleotide and amino acid sequences are 79% and 81% identical, respectively. Orf164 is transcribed in several organ types of Arabidopsis thaliana, as detected by RT-PCR. In addition, orf164 is transcribed in five other Brassicaceae within the tribes Camelineae, Erysimeae and Cardamineae, but the gene is not present in Brassica or Raphanus. This study shows that nuclear genes can be transferred to the mitochondrial genome and become expressed, providing a new perspective on the movement of genes between the genomes of subcellular compartments.

  5. Experiments on Gene Transferring to Primary Hematopoietic Cells by Liposome

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    Liposomes have showed many advantages in mediating exogenous gene into many cell types in vitro and in vivo. But few data are available concerning gene transfer into hematopoietic cells. In this report, we described two-marker genes (Neo R and Lac Z) co-transferred into hematopoietic cells of human and mouse by using liposome in vitro. The efficiency of gene transfer was tested by Xgal staining and observation of colony formation. The X-gal blue staining rate of transduced cells was about (13.33±2. 68) % in human and about (16. 28±2.95) % in mouse without G418 selection. After G418 selection, the blue cell rate was (46. 06±3.47)%in human and (43. 45±4. 1) % in mouse, which were markedly higher than those before selection, suggesting that high-efficiency gene transfer and expression could be attained in primary hematopoietic cells using this easy and harmless transduction protocol. At the same time, this protocol provided experimental data for clinicians to investigate the biology of marrow reconstitution and trace the origin of relapse after autologous bone marrow transplantation for the patients with leukemia.

  6. Gene transfer from a parasitic flowering plant to a fern


    Davis, Charles C.; Anderson, William R.; Wurdack, Kenneth J


    The rattlesnake fern (Botrychium virginianum (L.) Sw.) is obligately mycotrophic and widely distributed across the northern hemisphere. Three mitochondrial gene regions place this species with other ferns in Ophioglossaceae, while two regions place it as a member of the largely parasitic angiosperm order Santalales (sandalwoods and mistletoes). These discordant phylogenetic placements suggest that part of the genome in B. virginianum was acquired by horizontal gene transfer (HGT), perhaps fro...

  7. Prevention of adverse events of interferon γ gene therapy by gene delivery of interferon γ-heparin-binding domain fusion protein in mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mitsuru Ando


    Full Text Available Sustained gene delivery of interferon (IFN γ can be an effective treatment, but our previous study showed high levels of IFNγ-induced adverse events, including the loss of body weight. These unwanted events could be reduced by target-specific delivery of IFNγ after in vivo gene transfer. To achieve this, we selected the heparin-binding domain (HBD of extracellular superoxide dismutase as a molecule to anchor IFNγ to the cell surface. We designed three IFNγ derivatives, IFNγ-HBD1, IFNγ-HBD2, and IFNγ-HBD3, each of which had 1, 2, or 3 HBDs, respectively. Each plasmid-encoding fusion proteins was delivered to the liver, a model target in this study, by hydrodynamic tail vein injection. The serum concentration of IFNγ-HBD2 and IFNγ-HBD3 after gene delivery was lower than that of IFNγ or IFNγ-HBD1. Gene delivery of IFNγ-HBD2, but not of IFNγ-HBD3, effectively increased the mRNA expression of IFNγ-inducible genes in the liver, suggesting liver-specific distribution of IFNγ-HBD2. Gene delivery of IFNγ-HBD2-suppressed tumor growth in the liver as efficiently as that of IFNγ with much less symptoms of adverse effects. These results indicate that the adverse events of IFNγ gene transfer can be prevented by gene delivery of IFNγ-HBD2, a fusion protein with high cell surface affinity.

  8. Horizontal gene transfer in the human gastrointestinal tract: potential spread of antibiotic resistance genes

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    Huddleston JR


    Full Text Available Jennifer R HuddlestonBiology Department, Abilene Christian University, Abilene, TX, USAAbstract: Bacterial infections are becoming increasingly difficult to treat due to widespread antibiotic resistance among pathogens. This review aims to give an overview of the major horizontal transfer mechanisms and their evolution and then demonstrate the human lower gastrointestinal tract as an environment in which horizontal gene transfer of resistance determinants occurs. Finally, implications for antibiotic usage and the development of resistant infections and persistence of antibiotic resistance genes in populations as a result of horizontal gene transfer in the large intestine will be discussed.Keywords: gut microbiome, conjugation, natural transformation, transduction

  9. Parallel Evolution and Horizontal Gene Transfer of the pst Operon in Firmicutes from Oligotrophic Environments

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    Alejandra Moreno-Letelier


    Full Text Available The high affinity phosphate transport system (pst is crucial for phosphate uptake in oligotrophic environments. Cuatro Cienegas Basin (CCB has extremely low P levels and its endemic Bacillus are closely related to oligotrophic marine Firmicutes. Thus, we expected the pst operon of CCB to share the same evolutionary history and protein similarity to marine Firmicutes. Orthologs of the pst operon were searched in 55 genomes of Firmicutes and 13 outgroups. Phylogenetic reconstructions were performed for the pst operon and 14 concatenated housekeeping genes using maximum likelihood methods. Conserved domains and 3D structures of the phosphate-binding protein (PstS were also analyzed. The pst operon of Firmicutes shows two highly divergent clades with no correlation to the type of habitat nor a phylogenetic congruence, suggesting horizontal gene transfer. Despite sequence divergence, the PstS protein had a similar 3D structure, which could be due to parallel evolution after horizontal gene transfer events.

  10. Gene Transfer in Mycobacterium tuberculosis: Shuttle Phasmids to Enlightenment. (United States)

    Jacobs, William R


    Infectious diseases have plagued humankind throughout history and have posed serious public health problems. Yet vaccines have eradicated smallpox and antibiotics have drastically decreased the mortality rate of many infectious agents. These remarkable successes in the control of infections came from knowing the causative agents of the diseases, followed by serendipitous discoveries of attenuated viruses and antibiotics. The discovery of DNA as genetic material and the understanding of how this information translates into specific phenotypes have changed the paradigm for developing new vaccines, drugs, and diagnostic tests. Knowledge of the mechanisms of immunity and mechanisms of action of drugs has led to new vaccines and new antimicrobial agents. The key to the acquisition of the knowledge of these mechanisms has been identifying the elemental causes (i.e., genes and their products) that mediate immunity and drug resistance. The identification of these genes is made possible by being able to transfer the genes or mutated forms of the genes into causative agents or surrogate hosts. Such an approach was limited in Mycobacterium tuberculosis by the difficulty of transferring genes or alleles into M. tuberculosis or a suitable surrogate mycobacterial host. The construction of shuttle phasmids-chimeric molecules that replicate in Escherichia coli as plasmids and in mycobacteria as mycobacteriophages-was instrumental in developing gene transfer systems for M. tuberculosis. This review will discuss M. tuberculosis genetic systems and their impact on tuberculosis research.

  11. Horizontal gene transfer of a bacterial insect toxin gene into the Epichloë fungal symbionts of grasses (United States)

    Ambrose, Karen V.; Koppenhöfer, Albrecht M.; Belanger, Faith C.


    Horizontal gene transfer is recognized as an important factor in genome evolution, particularly when the newly acquired gene confers a new capability to the recipient species. We identified a gene similar to the makes caterpillars floppy (mcf1 and mcf2) insect toxin genes in Photorhabdus, bacterial symbionts of nematodes, in the genomes of the Epichloë fungi, which are intercellular symbionts of grasses. Infection by Epichloë spp. often confers insect resistance to the grass hosts, largely due to the production of fungal alkaloids. A mcf-like gene is present in all of the Epichloë genome sequences currently available but in no other fungal genomes. This suggests the Epichloë genes were derived from a single lineage-specific HGT event. Molecular dating was used to estimate the time of the HGT event at between 7.2 and 58.8 million years ago. The mcf-like coding sequence from Epichloë typhina subsp. poae was cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli. E. coli cells expressing the Mcf protein were toxic to black cutworms (Agrotis ipsilon), whereas E. coli cells containing the vector only were non-toxic. These results suggest that the Epichloë mcf-like genes may be a component, in addition to the fungal alkaloids, of the insect resistance observed in Epichloë-infected grasses. PMID:24990771

  12. Gene transfer and genome-wide insertional mutagenesis by retroviral transduction in fish stem cells.

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    Qizhi Liu

    Full Text Available Retrovirus (RV is efficient for gene transfer and integration in dividing cells of diverse organisms. RV provides a powerful tool for insertional mutagenesis (IM to identify and functionally analyze genes essential for normal and pathological processes. Here we report RV-mediated gene transfer and genome-wide IM in fish stem cells from medaka and zebrafish. Three RVs were produced for fish cell transduction: rvLegfp and rvLcherry produce green fluorescent protein (GFP and mCherry fluorescent protein respectively under control of human cytomegalovirus immediate early promoter upon any chromosomal integration, whereas rvGTgfp contains a splicing acceptor and expresses GFP only upon gene trapping (GT via intronic in-frame integration and spliced to endogenous active genes. We show that rvLegfp and rvLcherry produce a transduction efficiency of 11~23% in medaka and zebrafish stem cell lines, which is as 30~67% efficient as the positive control in NIH/3T3. Upon co-infection with rvGTgfp and rvLcherry, GFP-positive cells were much fewer than Cherry-positive cells, consistent with rareness of productive gene trapping events versus random integration. Importantly, rvGTgfp infection in the medaka haploid embryonic stem (ES cell line HX1 generated GTgfp insertion on all 24 chromosomes of the haploid genome. Similar to the mammalian haploid cells, these insertion events were presented predominantly in intergenic regions and introns but rarely in exons. RV-transduced HX1 retained the ES cell properties such as stable growth, embryoid body formation and pluripotency gene expression. Therefore, RV is proficient for gene transfer and IM in fish stem cells. Our results open new avenue for genome-wide IM in medaka haploid ES cells in culture.

  13. Combined effects of thrombosis pathway gene variants predict cardiovascular events.

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    Kirsi Auro


    Full Text Available The genetic background of complex diseases is proposed to consist of several low-penetrance risk loci. Addressing this complexity likely requires both large sample size and simultaneous analysis of different predisposing variants. We investigated the role of four thrombosis genes: coagulation factor V (F5, intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM1, protein C (PROC, and thrombomodulin (THBD in cardiovascular diseases. Single allelic gene variants and their pair-wise combinations were analyzed in two independently sampled population cohorts from Finland. From among 14,140 FINRISK participants (FINRISK-92, n = 5,999 and FINRISK-97, n = 8,141, we selected for genotyping a sample of 2,222, including 528 incident cardiovascular disease (CVD cases and random subcohorts totaling 786. To cover all known common haplotypes (>10%, 54 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs were genotyped. Classification-tree analysis identified 11 SNPs that were further analyzed in Cox's proportional hazard model as single variants and pair-wise combinations. Multiple testing was controlled by use of two independent cohorts and with false-discovery rate. Several CVD risk variants were identified: In women, the combination of F5 rs7542281 x THBD rs1042580, together with three single F5 SNPs, was associated with CVD events. Among men, PROC rs1041296, when combined with either ICAM1 rs5030341 or F5 rs2269648, was associated with total mortality. As a single variant, PROC rs1401296, together with the F5 Leiden mutation, was associated with ischemic stroke events. Our strategy to combine the classification-tree analysis with more traditional genetic models was successful in identifying SNPs-acting either in combination or as single variants--predisposing to CVD, and produced consistent results in two independent cohorts. These results suggest that variants in these four thrombosis genes contribute to arterial cardiovascular events at population level.

  14. Bacterial genes in the aphid genome: absence of functional gene transfer from Buchnera to its host.

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    Naruo Nikoh


    Full Text Available Genome reduction is typical of obligate symbionts. In cellular organelles, this reduction partly reflects transfer of ancestral bacterial genes to the host genome, but little is known about gene transfer in other obligate symbioses. Aphids harbor anciently acquired obligate mutualists, Buchnera aphidicola (Gammaproteobacteria, which have highly reduced genomes (420-650 kb, raising the possibility of gene transfer from ancestral Buchnera to the aphid genome. In addition, aphids often harbor other bacteria that also are potential sources of transferred genes. Previous limited sampling of genes expressed in bacteriocytes, the specialized cells that harbor Buchnera, revealed that aphids acquired at least two genes from bacteria. The newly sequenced genome of the pea aphid, Acyrthosiphon pisum, presents the first opportunity for a complete inventory of genes transferred from bacteria to the host genome in the context of an ancient obligate symbiosis. Computational screening of the entire A. pisum genome, followed by phylogenetic and experimental analyses, provided strong support for the transfer of 12 genes or gene fragments from bacteria to the aphid genome: three LD-carboxypeptidases (LdcA1, LdcA2,psiLdcA, five rare lipoprotein As (RlpA1-5, N-acetylmuramoyl-L-alanine amidase (AmiD, 1,4-beta-N-acetylmuramidase (bLys, DNA polymerase III alpha chain (psiDnaE, and ATP synthase delta chain (psiAtpH. Buchnera was the apparent source of two highly truncated pseudogenes (psiDnaE and psiAtpH. Most other transferred genes were closely related to genes from relatives of Wolbachia (Alphaproteobacteria. At least eight of the transferred genes (LdcA1, AmiD, RlpA1-5, bLys appear to be functional, and expression of seven (LdcA1, AmiD, RlpA1-5 are highly upregulated in bacteriocytes. The LdcAs and RlpAs appear to have been duplicated after transfer. Our results excluded the hypothesis that genome reduction in Buchnera has been accompanied by gene transfer to the

  15. [Analysis of adverse events associated with interhospital transfer of critically ill patients. Safety checklist]. (United States)

    Melgarejo Urendez, A; Bernat Adell, M D; Lorente García, P


    Mobilization entails a risk for critically ill patients. It is therefore important to design and apply the tools to detect any safety lapses and to improve the quality of patient healthcare. To identify which adverse events (AE) are related to interhospital transfer of assisted patients and how enabling a protocol may prevent potential risks. Descriptive, observational study. We analyzed 110 transfers during morning shift in an Intensive Care Unit at a reference hospital between January and March 2011. Variables related to underlying security factors were collected. The average transfer time was 37.16 minutes. 61.82% of the transfers were carried out on a scheduled basis. An 18.18% of AE were detected. In both cases, desaturation and hemodynamic instability made up to 2.7% of the cases. 5.5% of the cases were underlying factors related to monitoring during transfer, and those related to ventilation during transfer accounted for 2.7%. Not having all materials by the stretcher constituted 1.8%. We detected 31 AE for non-compliance with the protocol, that being a 27.15% of all transfers. Before each hospital transfer, a risk-benefit assessment is recommended in order to avoid potential alterations in the patient's pathophysiologic condition. Both the protocol and the safety checklist are key to detect underlying factors and improve security during interhospital transfers. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier España, S.L. y SEEIUC. All rights reserved.

  16. The give-and-take of DNA: horizontal gene transfer in plants. (United States)

    Bock, Ralph


    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is increasingly being recognized as a significant force in the evolution of eukaryotic genomes. Plants have been both donors and recipients of horizontally mobilized genes and their genetic barter partners include prokaryotes and eukaryotes from all kingdoms. By expanding the gene pool beyond species boundaries, HGT events can drive genomic and phenotypic changes that increase fitness substantially. Accumulating evidence suggests that HGT is particularly prevalent between organisms that are either intimately associated or establish at least occasionally cell-cell contacts (e.g. in mutualistic or parasitic relationships). Here, I summarize current knowledge about HGT in plants, discuss possible molecular mechanisms and adaptive values of HGT events and highlight recent progress made in reconstructing HGT processes in laboratory experiments.

  17. Engineering T cell immunity by TCR gene transfer

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Linnemann, Carsten


    T cell responses against tumor-antigens are frequently observed for some human malignancies, in particular melanoma. However, the spontaneous development of T cell responses of a sufficient strength to eradicate human malignancies is rare. The transfer of T cell receptor (TCR) αβ genes into autologo

  18. Quasispecies theory for horizontal gene transfer and recombination (United States)

    Muñoz, Enrique; Park, Jeong-Man; Deem, Michael W.


    We introduce a generalization of the parallel, or Crow-Kimura, and Eigen models of molecular evolution to represent the exchange of genetic information between individuals in a population. We study the effect of different schemes of genetic recombination on the steady-state mean fitness and distribution of individuals in the population, through an analytic field theoretic mapping. We investigate both horizontal gene transfer from a population and recombination between pairs of individuals. Somewhat surprisingly, these nonlinear generalizations of quasispecies theory to modern biology are analytically solvable. For two-parent recombination, we find two selected phases, one of which is spectrally rigid. We present exact analytical formulas for the equilibrium mean fitness of the population, in terms of a maximum principle, which are generally applicable to any permutation invariant replication rate function. For smooth fitness landscapes, we show that when positive epistatic interactions are present, recombination or horizontal gene transfer introduces a mild load against selection. Conversely, if the fitness landscape exhibits negative epistasis, horizontal gene transfer or recombination introduces an advantage by enhancing selection towards the fittest genotypes. These results prove that the mutational deterministic hypothesis holds for quasispecies models. For the discontinuous single sharp peak fitness landscape, we show that horizontal gene transfer has no effect on the fitness, while recombination decreases the fitness, for both the parallel and the Eigen models. We present numerical and analytical results as well as phase diagrams for the different cases.

  19. Detection of horizontal transfer of individual genes by anomalous oligomer frequencies

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    Elhai Jeff


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Understanding the history of life requires that we understand the transfer of genetic material across phylogenetic boundaries. Detecting genes that were acquired by means other than vertical descent is a basic step in that process. Detection by discordant phylogenies is computationally expensive and not always definitive. Many have used easily computed compositional features as an alternative procedure. However, different compositional methods produce different predictions, and the effectiveness of any method is not well established. Results The ability of octamer frequency comparisons to detect genes artificially seeded in cyanobacterial genomes was markedly increased by using as a training set those genes that are highly conserved over all bacteria. Using a subset of octamer frequencies in such tests also increased effectiveness, but this depended on the specific target genome and the source of the contaminating genes. The presence of high frequency octamers and the GC content of the contaminating genes were important considerations. A method comprising best practices from these tests was devised, the Core Gene Similarity (CGS method, and it performed better than simple octamer frequency analysis, codon bias, or GC contrasts in detecting seeded genes or naturally occurring transposons. From a comparison of predictions with phylogenetic trees, it appears that the effectiveness of the method is confined to horizontal transfer events that have occurred recently in evolutionary time. Conclusions The CGS method may be an improvement over existing surrogate methods to detect genes of foreign origin.

  20. A Preliminary List of Horizontally Transferred Genes in Prokaryotes Determined by Tree Reconstruction and Reconciliation

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    Hyeonsoo Jeong


    Full Text Available Genome-wide global detection of genes involved in horizontal gene transfer (HGT remains an active area of research in medical microbiology and evolutionary genomics. Utilizing the explicit evolutionary method of comparing topologies of a total of 154,805 orthologous gene trees against corresponding 16S rRNA “reference” trees, we previously detected a total of 660,894 candidate HGT events in 2,472 completely-sequenced prokaryotic genomes. Here, we report an HGT-index for each individual gene-reference tree pair reconciliation, representing the total number of detected HGT events on the gene tree divided by the total number of genomes (taxa member of that tree. HGT-index is thus a simple measure indicating the sensitivity of prokaryotic genes to participate (or not participate in HGT. Our preliminary list provides HGT-indices for a total of 69,365 genes (detected in >10 and <50% available prokaryotic genomes that are involved in a wide range of biological processes such as metabolism, information, and bacterial response to environment. Identification of horizontally-derived genes is important to combat antibiotic resistance and is a step forward toward reconstructions of improved phylogenies describing the history of life. Our effort is thus expected to benefit ongoing research in the fields of clinical microbiology and evolutionary biology.

  1. Myeloprotection by Cytidine Deaminase Gene Transfer in Antileukemic Therapy

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    Nico Lachmann


    Full Text Available Gene transfer of drug resistance (CTX-R genes can be used to protect the hematopoietic system from the toxicity of anticancer chemotherapy and this concept recently has been proven by overexpression of a mutant O6-methylguaninemethyltransferase in the hematopoietic system of glioblastoma patients treated with temozolomide. Given its protection capacity against such relevant drugs as cytosine arabinoside (ara-C, gemcitabine, decitabine, or azacytidine and the highly hematopoiesis-specific toxicity profile of several of these agents, cytidine deaminase (CDD represents another interesting candidate CTX-R gene and our group recently has established the myeloprotective capacity of CDD gene transfer in a number of murine transplant studies. Clinically, CDD overexpression appears particularly suited to optimize treatment strategies for acute leukemias and myelodysplasias given the efficacy of ara-C (and to a lesser degree decitabine and azacytidine in these disease entities. This article will review the current state of the art with regard to CDD gene transfer and point out potential scenarios for a clinical application of this strategy. In addition, risks and potential side effects associated with this approach as well as strategies to overcome these problems will be highlighted.

  2. Gene transfer into hematopoietic stem cells as treatment for primary immunodeficiency diseases. (United States)

    Candotti, Fabio


    Gene transfer into the hematopoietic stem cell has shown curative potential for a variety of hematological disorders. Primary immunodeficiency diseases have led to the way in this field of gene therapy as an example and a model. Clinical results from the past 15 years have shown that significant improvement and even cure can be achieved for diseases such as X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency, adenosine deaminase deficiency, chronic granulomatous disease and Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome. Unfortunately, with the initial clear clinical benefits, the first serious complications of gene therapy have also occurred. In a significant number of patients treated using vectors based on murine gamma-retroviruses and carrying powerful viral enhancer elements, insertional oncogenesis events have resulted in acute leukemias that, in some cases, have had fatal outcomes. These serious adverse events have sparked a revision of the assessment of risks and benefits of integrating gene transfer for hematological diseases and prompted the development and application of new generations of viral vectors with recognized superior safety characteristics. This review summarizes the clinical experience of gene therapy for primary immunodeficiencies and discusses the likely avenues of progress in the future development of this expanding field of clinical investigations.

  3. Optimized Data Transfers Based on the OpenCL Event Management Mechanism

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    Hiroyuki Takizawa


    Full Text Available In standard OpenCL programming, hosts are supposed to control their compute devices. Since compute devices are dedicated to kernel computation, only hosts can execute several kinds of data transfers such as internode communication and file access. These data transfers require one host to simultaneously play two or more roles due to the need for collaboration between the host and devices. The codes for such data transfers are likely to be system-specific, resulting in low portability. This paper proposes an OpenCL extension that incorporates such data transfers into the OpenCL event management mechanism. Unlike the current OpenCL standard, the main thread running on the host is not blocked to serialize dependent operations. Hence, an application can easily use the opportunities to overlap parallel activities of hosts and compute devices. In addition, the implementation details of data transfers are hidden behind the extension, and application programmers can use the optimized data transfers without any tricky programming techniques. The evaluation results show that the proposed extension can use the optimized data transfer implementation and thereby increase the sustained data transfer performance by about 18% for a real application accessing a big data file.

  4. Evidence of recent interkingdom horizontal gene transfer between bacteria and Candida parapsilosis

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    Butler Geraldine


    Full Text Available Abstract Background To date very few incidences of interdomain gene transfer into fungi have been identified. Here, we used the emerging genome sequences of Candida albicans WO-1, Candida tropicalis, Candida parapsilosis, Clavispora lusitaniae, Pichia guilliermondii, and Lodderomyces elongisporus to identify recent interdomain HGT events. We refer to these as CTG species because they translate the CTG codon as serine rather than leucine, and share a recent common ancestor. Results Phylogenetic and syntenic information infer that two C. parapsilosis genes originate from bacterial sources. One encodes a putative proline racemase (PR. Phylogenetic analysis also infers that there were independent transfers of bacterial PR enzymes into members of the Pezizomycotina, and protists. The second HGT gene in C. parapsilosis belongs to the phenazine F (PhzF superfamily. Most CTG species also contain a fungal PhzF homolog. Our phylogeny suggests that the CTG homolog originated from an ancient HGT event, from a member of the proteobacteria. An analysis of synteny suggests that C. parapsilosis has lost the endogenous fungal form of PhzF, and subsequently reacquired it from a proteobacterial source. There is evidence that Schizosaccharomyces pombe and Basidiomycotina also obtained a PhzF homolog through HGT. Conclusion Our search revealed two instances of well-supported HGT from bacteria into the CTG clade, both specific to C. parapsilosis. Therefore, while recent interkingdom gene transfer has taken place in the CTG lineage, its occurrence is rare. However, our analysis will not detect ancient gene transfers, and we may have underestimated the global extent of HGT into CTG species.

  5. Relational event models for longitudinal network data with an application to interhospital patient transfers. (United States)

    Vu, Duy; Lomi, Alessandro; Mascia, Daniele; Pallotti, Francesca


    The main objective of this paper is to introduce and illustrate relational event models, a new class of statistical models for the analysis of time-stamped data with complex temporal and relational dependencies. We outline the main differences between recently proposed relational event models and more conventional network models based on the graph-theoretic formalism typically adopted in empirical studies of social networks. Our main contribution involves the definition and implementation of a marked point process extension of currently available models. According to this approach, the sequence of events of interest is decomposed into two components: (a) event time and (b) event destination. This decomposition transforms the problem of selection of event destination in relational event models into a conditional multinomial logistic regression problem. The main advantages of this formulation are the possibility of controlling for the effect of event-specific data and a significant reduction in the estimation time of currently available relational event models. We demonstrate the empirical value of the model in an analysis of interhospital patient transfers within a regional community of health care organizations. We conclude with a discussion of how the models we presented help to overcome some the limitations of statistical models for networks that are currently available. Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  6. Kidney-specific transposon-mediated gene transfer in vivo (United States)

    Woodard, Lauren E.; Cheng, Jizhong; Welch, Richard C.; Williams, Felisha M.; Luo, Wentian; Gewin, Leslie S.; Wilson, Matthew H.


    Methods enabling kidney-specific gene transfer in adult mice are needed to develop new therapies for kidney disease. We attempted kidney-specific gene transfer following hydrodynamic tail vein injection using the kidney-specific podocin and gamma-glutamyl transferase promoters, but found expression primarily in the liver. In order to achieve kidney-specific transgene expression, we tested direct hydrodynamic injection of a DNA solution into the renal pelvis and found that luciferase expression was strong in the kidney and absent from extra-renal tissues. We observed heterogeneous, low-level transfection of the collecting duct, proximal tubule, distal tubule, interstitial cells, and rarely glomerular cells following injection. To assess renal injury, we performed the renal pelvis injections on uninephrectomised mice and found that their blood urea nitrogen was elevated at two days post-transfer but resolved within two weeks. Although luciferase expression quickly decreased following renal pelvis injection, the use of the piggyBac transposon system improved long-term expression. Immunosuppression with cyclophosphamide stabilised luciferase expression, suggesting immune clearance of the transfected cells occurs in immunocompetent animals. Injection of a transposon expressing erythropoietin raised the haematocrit, indicating that the developed injection technique can elicit a biologic effect in vivo. Hydrodynamic renal pelvis injection enables transposon mediated-kidney specific gene transfer in adult mice. PMID:28317878

  7. Immunotherapy of Malignancy by in vivo Gene Transfer into Tumors (United States)

    Plautz, Gregory E.; Yang, Zhi-Yong; Wu, Bei-Yue; Gao, Xiang; Huang, Leaf; Nabel, Gary J.


    The immune system confers protection against a variety of pathogens and contributes to the surveillance and destruction of neoplastic cells. Several cell types participate in the recognition and lysis of tumors, and appropriate immune stimulation provides therapeutic effects in malignancy. Foreign major histocompatibility complex (MHC) proteins also serve as a potent stimulus to the immune system. In this report, a foreign MHC gene was introduced directly into malignant tumors in vivo in an effort to stimulate tumor rejection. In contrast to previous attempts to induce tumor immunity by cell-mediated gene transfer, the recombinant gene was introduced directly into tumors in vivo. Expression of the murine class I H-2K^s gene within the CT26 mouse colon adenocarcinoma (H-2K^d) or the MCA 106 fibrosarcoma (H-2K^b) induced a cytotoxic T-cell response to H-2K^s and, more importantly, to other antigens present on unmodified tumor cells. This immune response attenuated tumor growth and caused complete tumor regression in many cases. Direct gene transfer in vivo can therefore induce cell-mediated immunity against specific gene products, which provides an immunotherapeutic effect for malignancy, and potentially can be applied to the treatment of cancer and infectious diseases in man.

  8. Adenovirus-mediated nitric oxide synthase gene transfer. (United States)

    Raman, Kathleen G; Shapiro, Richard A; Tzeng, Edith; Kibbe, Melina R


    The varied biological effects of nitric oxide (NO) have led to intense research into its diverse physiologic and pathophysiologic roles in multiple disease processes. It has been implicated in the development of altered vasomotor tone, intimal hyperplasia, atherosclerosis, impotence, host defense, and wound healing. Using the modern technologies of recombinant DNA and gene transfer using adenoviral vectors, the effects of NO derived from various NO synthase (NOS) enzymes can be studied in a variety of tissues and the therapeutic applications of NOS is possible. Such uses of NOS gene transfer have been investigated extensively in the vasculature where NO is critical to regulating vascular homeostasis. NOS gene therapy has the theoretical advantage of allowing NO delivery to be localized, thereby limiting potential adverse effects of NO. The benefits of adenoviral vectors in gene transfer include relatively high transduction efficiencies, both replicating and nonreplicating cells may be infected, and the high titers of adenovirus that can be produced. The methods described in this chapter include the cloning of the iNOS cDNA into a recombinant adenoviral vector, large-scale production of that vector AdiNOS preparation, and the use of the vector to transduce tissue in vitro and in vivo.

  9. Improving Adenovirus Based Gene Transfer: Strategies to Accomplish Immune Evasion

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    Andrea Amalfitano


    Full Text Available Adenovirus (Ad based gene transfer vectors continue to be the platform of choice for an increasing number of clinical trials worldwide. In fact, within the last five years, the number of clinical trials that utilize Ad based vectors has doubled, indicating growing enthusiasm for the numerous positive characteristics of this gene transfer platform. For example, Ad vectors can be easily and relatively inexpensively produced to high titers in a cGMP compliant manner, can be stably stored and transported, and have a broad applicability for a wide range of clinical conditions, including both gene therapy and vaccine applications. Ad vector based gene transfer will become more useful as strategies to counteract innate and/or pre-existing adaptive immune responses to Ads are developed and confirmed to be efficacious. The approaches attempting to overcome these limitations can be divided into two broad categories: pre-emptive immune modulation of the host, and selective modification of the Ad vector itself. The first category of methods includes the use of immunosuppressive drugs or specific compounds to block important immune pathways, which are known to be induced by Ads. The second category comprises several innovative strategies inclusive of: (1 Ad-capsid-display of specific inhibitors or ligands; (2 covalent modifications of the entire Ad vector capsid moiety; (3 the use of tissue specific promoters and local administration routes; (4 the use of genome modified Ads; and (5 the development of chimeric or alternative serotype Ads. This review article will focus on both the promise and the limitations of each of these immune evasion strategies, and in the process delineate future directions in developing safer and more efficacious Ad-based gene transfer strategies.

  10. Direct Gene Transfer into Rabbit Peripheral Nerve in vivo

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张世强; 张经歧; 张英泽; 刘玲


    Exogenous gene suture was used to achieve peripheral nerve anastomoses to probe into the feasibility that the sites of anastomoses of nerves directly transfer gene and thus enable gene to be expressed at the sites of anastomoses under the condition that perfect nerve anastomoses are ensured. PCMVβ plasmid containing cytomegalovirus promoter (CMV promoter) and Escherichia coli (E.coli) β-Galactosidase (β-Gal) structural gene (lacZ gene) was conducted. A soaked medical 8-0nylon suture was used to perform epineurial repair of rabbit sciatic nerve. In the control group a suture soaked in sucrose PBS was used, while in the experimental group a suture soaked in PCMVβ plasmid solution was applied. The sites of anastomoses of nerves by stages were taken out, and β-Gal histochemical staining was performed and β-Gal enzyme activity was assayed with 5-bromo-4-chloro-3-indolyl-β-D-galactoside. Results showed that the sites of anastomoses of nerves were taken out 2 days, 7 days, 14 days and 30 days respectively after the operation. The β-Gal histochemical stains at the sites of anastomoses showed no indigo positive cells at different stages in the control group, whereas displayed indigo positive cells in the experimental group. In the control group, no β-Gal enzyme activity was detected at different stages after operation, but in the experimental group, β-Gal enzyme activity could be detected from the 3rd day to the 30th day after operation. It was concluded that by using exogenous gene suture, exogenous gene could be transferred to the sites of peripheral nerve and expressed the exogenous gene expression products with bioactivity, which provided the feasibility of using gene therapy to accelerate the recovery of nerve function.

  11. Contribution of Multiple Inter-kingdom Horizontal Gene Transfers to Evolution and Adaptation of Amphibian-killing Chytrid, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis

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    Baofa Sun


    Full Text Available Amphibian populations are experiencing catastrophic declines driven by the fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd. Although horizontal gene transfer (HGT facilitates the evolution and adaptation in many fungi by conferring novel function genes to the recipient fungi, inter-kingdom HGT in Bd remains largely unexplored. In this study, our investigation detects 19 bacterial genes transferred to Bd, including metallo-beta-lactamase and arsenate reductase that play important roles in the resistance to antibiotics and arsenates. Moreover, three probable HGT gene families in Bd are from plants and one gene family coding the ankyrin repeat-containing protein appears to come from oomycetes. The observed multi-copy gene families associated with HGT are probably due to the independent transfer events or gene duplications. Five HGT genes with extracellular locations may relate to infection, and some other genes may participate in a variety of metabolic pathways, and in doing so add important metabolic traits to the recipient. The evolutionary analysis indicates that all the transferred genes evolved under purifying selection, suggesting that their functions in Bd are similar to those of the donors. Collectively, our results indicate that HGT from diverse donors may be an important evolutionary driver of Bd, and improve its adaptations for infecting and colonizing host amphibians.

  12. Contribution of Multiple Inter-Kingdom Horizontal Gene Transfers to Evolution and Adaptation of Amphibian-Killing Chytrid, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (United States)

    Sun, Baofa; Li, Tong; Xiao, Jinhua; Liu, Li; Zhang, Peng; Murphy, Robert W.; He, Shunmin; Huang, Dawei


    Amphibian populations are experiencing catastrophic declines driven by the fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd). Although horizontal gene transfer (HGT) facilitates the evolution and adaptation in many fungi by conferring novel function genes to the recipient fungi, inter-kingdom HGT in Bd remains largely unexplored. In this study, our investigation detects 19 bacterial genes transferred to Bd, including metallo-beta-lactamase and arsenate reductase that play important roles in the resistance to antibiotics and arsenates. Moreover, three probable HGT gene families in Bd are from plants and one gene family coding the ankyrin repeat-containing protein appears to come from oomycetes. The observed multi-copy gene families associated with HGT are probably due to the independent transfer events or gene duplications. Five HGT genes with extracellular locations may relate to infection, and some other genes may participate in a variety of metabolic pathways, and in doing so add important metabolic traits to the recipient. The evolutionary analysis indicates that all the transferred genes evolved under purifying selection, suggesting that their functions in Bd are similar to those of the donors. Collectively, our results indicate that HGT from diverse donors may be an important evolutionary driver of Bd, and improve its adaptations for infecting and colonizing host amphibians. PMID:27630622

  13. Inhibitory effect of Ca2+ on in vivo gene transfer by electroporation

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yong-gang ZHAO; Hui-li LU; Jin-liang PENG; Yu-hong XU


    Aim:To investigate the specific effects of Ca2+ on transgene expression during electroporation-mediated gene transfer in mice.Methods:Skeletal muscle and skin were subjected to in vivo electroporation with a luciferase reporter plasmid,with or Without Ca2+ and various other ions.Resuits:For in vivo electroporation,the presence of just 10 mmol/L Ca2+ in the DNA solution drastically reduced the resulting transgene expression,to less than 5% of control values.Only Ca2+,not other ions,caused inhibition,and the effect was not tissue specific.More surprisingly.even when Ca2+ ions were delivered by electroporation before or after DNA administration,similar effects were still observed.Conelusion:The inhibitory effect of Ca2+ on in vivo gene transfer by electroporation is specific,ie,the inhibitory effect may be related to the cell membrane properties after electroporation and the subsequent resealing event.

  14. Can Viruses be Modified to Achieve Sustained Gene Transfer?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hildegund CJ Ertl


    Full Text Available It is very easy to replace a faulty gene in an immunocompromised mouse. First, one takes a well-characterized virus, such as an adenovirus or an adeno-associated virus, and incorporates the correct version of the faulty gene together with some regulatory sequences into the genome. Then, one transduces the recombinant genome into helper cells, which will add the viral capsid. At last, one injects the resulting viral vector into the sick mouse, and the mouse is cured. It is not that easy in an immunocompetent mouse, let alone in a human, as over the eons the immune system evolved to eliminate viruses regardless if they penetrate as dangerous pathogens or are injected by a well-meaning gene therapist. Here we offer our perspective on the potential of how viral vectors achieve sustained gene transfer in the face of a hostile immune system.

  15. Horizontal gene transfer dynamics and distribution of fitness effects during microbial in silico evolution

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    Mozhayskiy Vadim


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Horizontal gene transfer (HGT is a process that facilitates the transfer of genetic material between organisms that are not directly related, and thus can affect both the rate of evolution and emergence of traits. Recent phylogenetic studies reveal HGT events are likely ubiquitous in the Tree of Life. However, our knowledge of HGT's role in evolution and biological organization is very limited, mainly due to the lack of ancestral evolutionary signatures and the difficulty to observe complex evolutionary dynamics in a laboratory setting. Here, we utilize a multi-scale microbial evolution model to comprehensively study the effect of HGT on the evolution of complex traits and organization of gene regulatory networks. Results Large-scale simulations reveal a distinct signature of the Distribution of Fitness Effect (DFE for HGT events: during evolution, while mutation fitness effects become more negative and neutral, HGT events result in a balanced effect distribution. In either case, lethal events are significantly decreased during evolution (33.0% to 3.2%, a clear indication of mutational robustness. Interestingly, evolution was accelerated when populations were exposed to correlated environments of increasing complexity, especially in the presence of HGT, a phenomenon that warrants further investigation. High HGT rates were found to be disruptive, while the average transferred fragment size was linked to functional module size in the underlying biological network. Network analysis reveals that HGT results in larger regulatory networks, but with the same sparsity level as those evolved in its absence. Observed phenotypic variability and co-existing solutions were traced to individual gain/loss of function events, while subsequent re-wiring after fragment integration was necessary for complex traits to emerge.

  16. Electroporation-mediated gene transfer directly to the swine heart. (United States)

    Hargrave, B; Downey, H; Strange, R; Murray, L; Cinnamond, C; Lundberg, C; Israel, A; Chen, Y-J; Marshall, W; Heller, R


    In vivo gene transfer to the ischemic heart via electroporation holds promise as a potential therapeutic approach for the treatment of heart disease. In the current study, we investigated the use of in vivo electroporation for gene transfer using three different penetrating electrodes and one non-penetrating electrode. The hearts of adult male swine were exposed through a sternotomy. Eight electric pulses synchronized to the rising phase of the R wave of the electrocardiogram were administered at varying pulse widths and field strengths following an injection of either a plasmid encoding luciferase or one encoding green fluorescent protein. Four sites on the anterior wall of the left ventricle were treated. Animals were killed 48 h after injection and electroporation and gene expression was determined. Results were compared with sites in the heart that received plasmid injection but no electric pulses or were not treated. Gene expression was higher in all electroporated sites when compared with injection only sites demonstrating the robustness of this approach. Our results provide evidence that in vivo electroporation can be a safe and effective non-viral method for delivering genes to the heart, in vivo.

  17. Endosymbiotic gene transfer in tertiary plastid-containing dinoflagellates. (United States)

    Burki, Fabien; Imanian, Behzad; Hehenberger, Elisabeth; Hirakawa, Yoshihisa; Maruyama, Shinichiro; Keeling, Patrick J


    Plastid establishment involves the transfer of endosymbiotic genes to the host nucleus, a process known as endosymbiotic gene transfer (EGT). Large amounts of EGT have been shown in several photosynthetic lineages but also in present-day plastid-lacking organisms, supporting the notion that endosymbiotic genes leave a substantial genetic footprint in the host nucleus. Yet the extent of this genetic relocation remains debated, largely because the long period that has passed since most plastids originated has erased many of the clues to how this process unfolded. Among the dinoflagellates, however, the ancestral peridinin-containing plastid has been replaced by tertiary plastids on several more recent occasions, giving us a less ancient window to examine plastid origins. In this study, we evaluated the endosymbiotic contribution to the host genome in two dinoflagellate lineages with tertiary plastids. We generated the first nuclear transcriptome data sets for the "dinotoms," which harbor diatom-derived plastids, and analyzed these data in combination with the available transcriptomes for kareniaceans, which harbor haptophyte-derived plastids. We found low level of detectable EGT in both dinoflagellate lineages, with only 9 genes and 90 genes of possible tertiary endosymbiotic origin in dinotoms and kareniaceans, respectively, suggesting that tertiary endosymbioses did not heavily impact the host dinoflagellate genomes.

  18. Methods for particle-mediated gene transfer into skin. (United States)

    Yang, N S; McCabe, D E; Swain, W F


    During the past 5 yr, particle-mediated delivery techniques have been developed as a physical means for gene transfer into various eukaryotic systems, including plants, insects, fish, and mammals (1-7). For mammalian somatic tissues, this technology, popularly known as the gene gun method, has been shown effective in transfection of skin, liver, pancreas, muscle, spleen, and other organs in vivo (3,4); brain, mammary, and leukocyte pnmary cultures or explants ex vivo (2,5-7); and a wide range of different mammalian cell lines in vitro (3,6,7).

  19. Gene transfer from a parasitic flowering plant to a fern. (United States)

    Davis, Charles C; Anderson, William R; Wurdack, Kenneth J


    The rattlesnake fern (Botrychium virginianum (L.) Sw.) is obligately mycotrophic and widely distributed across the northern hemisphere. Three mitochondrial gene regions place this species with other ferns in Ophioglossaceae, while two regions place it as a member of the largely parasitic angiosperm order Santalales (sandalwoods and mistletoes). These discordant phylogenetic placements suggest that part of the genome in B. virginianum was acquired by horizontal gene transfer (HGT), perhaps from root-parasitic Loranthaceae. These transgenes are restricted to B. virginianum and occur across the range of the species. Molecular and life-history traits indicate that the transfer preceded the global expansion of B. virginianum, and that the latter may have happened very rapidly. This is the first report of HGT from an angiosperm to a fern, through either direct parasitism or the mediation of interconnecting fungal symbionts.

  20. Selective Gene Transfer to the Retina Using Intravitreal Ultrasound Irradiation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shozo Sonoda


    Full Text Available This paper aims to evaluate the efficacy of intravitreal ultrasound (US irradiation for green fluorescent protein (GFP plasmid transfer into the rabbit retina using a miniature US transducer. Intravitreal US irradiation was performed by a slight modification of the transconjunctival sutureless vitrectomy system utilizing a small probe. After vitrectomy, the US probe was inserted through a scleral incision. A mixture of GFP plasmid (50 μL and bubble liposomes (BLs; 50 μL was injected into the vitreous cavity, and US was generated to the retina using a SonoPore 4000. The control group was not exposed to US. After 72 h, the gene-transfer efficiency was quantified by counting the number of GFP-positive cells. The retinas that received plasmid, BL, and US showed a significant increase in the number (average ± SEM of GFP-positive cells (32±4.9; n=7; P<0.01 . No GFP-positive cells were observed in the control eyes (n=7. Intravitreal retinal US irradiation can transfer the GFP plasmid into the retina without causing any apparent damage. This procedure could be used to transfer genes and drugs directly to the retina and therefore has potential therapeutic value.

  1. The interconnection between biofilm formation and horizontal gene transfer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Madsen, Jonas Stenløkke; Burmølle, Mette; Hansen, Lars H.


    Recent research has revealed that horizontal gene transfer and biofilm formation are connected processes. Although published research investigating this interconnectedness is still limited, we will review this subject in order to highlight the potential of these observations because of their beli......Recent research has revealed that horizontal gene transfer and biofilm formation are connected processes. Although published research investigating this interconnectedness is still limited, we will review this subject in order to highlight the potential of these observations because...... of their believed importance in the understanding of the adaptation and subsequent evolution of social traits in bacteria. Here, we discuss current evidence for such interconnectedness centred on plasmids. Horizontal transfer rates are typically higher in biofilm communities compared with those in planktonic states....... Biofilms, furthermore, promote plasmid stability and may enhance the host range of mobile genetic elements that are transferred horizontally. Plasmids, on the other hand, are very well suited to promote the evolution of social traits such as biofilm formation. This, essentially, transpires because plasmids...

  2. Stable oncogenic transformation induced by microcell-mediated gene transfer

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    吕有勇; Donald G.Blair


    Oncogenes have been identified using DNA-mediated transfection, but the size of the transferable and unrearranged DNA, gene rearrangement and amplification which occur during the transfection process limit the use of the techniques. We have evaluated microcell-mediated gene transfer techniques for the transfer and analysis of dominant oncogenes. MNNG-HOS, a transformed human cell line which contained the met oncogene mapping to human chromosome 7 was infected with retroviruses carrying drug resistance markers and used to optimize microcell preparation and transfer. Stable and drug-resistant hybrids containing single human chromosomes as well as the foci of the transformed cells containing the activated met oncogene and intact hitman chromosomes were obtained. Hybridization analysis with probes (i.e. collA2, pJ3.11) mapping up to 1 Mb away from met shows that the cells from the individual focr contain different amounts of apparently unrearranged human DNA associated with the oncogene, and the microcell-g

  3. Gene Transfer in Eukaryotic Cells Using Activated Dendrimers (United States)

    Dennig, Jörg

    Gene transfer into eukaryotic cells plays an important role in cell biology. Over the last 30 years a number of transfection methods have been developed to mediate gene transfer into eukaryotic cells. Classical methods include co-precipitation of DNA with calcium phosphate, charge-dependent precipitation of DNA with DEAE-dextran, electroporation of nucleic acids, and formation of transfection complexes between DNA and cationic liposomes. Gene transfer technologies based on activated PAMAM-dendrimers provide another class of transfection reagents. PAMAM-dendrimers are highly branched, spherical molecules. Activation of newly synthesized dendrimers involves hydrolytic removal of some of the branches, and results in a molecule with a higher degree of flexibility. Activated dendrimers assemble DNA into compact structures via charge interactions. Activated dendrimer - DNA complexes bind to the cell membrane of eukaryotic cells, and are transported into the cell by non-specific endocytosis. A structural model of the activated dendrimer - DNA complex and a potential mechanism for its uptake into cells will be discussed.

  4. A rice Stowaway MITE for gene transfer in yeast.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isam Fattash

    Full Text Available Miniature inverted repeat transposable elements (MITEs lack protein coding capacity and often share very limited sequence similarity with potential autonomous elements. Their capability of efficient transposition and dramatic amplification led to the proposition that MITEs are an untapped rich source of materials for transposable element (TE based genetic tools. To test the concept of using MITE sequence in gene transfer, a rice Stowaway MITE previously shown to excise efficiently in yeast was engineered to carry cargo genes (neo and gfp for delivery into the budding yeast genome. Efficient excision of the cargo gene cassettes was observed even though the excision frequency generally decreases with the increase of the cargo sizes. Excised elements insert into new genomic loci efficiently, with about 65% of the obtained insertion sites located in genes. Elements at the primary insertion sites can be remobilized, frequently resulting in copy number increase of the element. Surprisingly, the orientation of a cargo gene (neo on a construct bearing dual reporter genes (gfp and neo was found to have a dramatic effect on transposition frequency. These results demonstrated the concept that MITE sequences can be useful in engineering genetic tools to deliver cargo genes into eukaryotic genomes.

  5. Phylogeographic support for horizontal gene transfer involving sympatric bruchid species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grill Andrea


    Full Text Available Abstract Background We report on the probable horizontal transfer of a mitochondrial gene, cytb, between species of Neotropical bruchid beetles, in a zone where these species are sympatric. The bruchid beetles Acanthoscelides obtectus, A. obvelatus, A. argillaceus and Zabrotes subfasciatus develop on various bean species in Mexico. Whereas A. obtectus and A. obvelatus develop on Phaseolus vulgaris in the Mexican Altiplano, A. argillaceus feeds on P. lunatus in the Pacific coast. The generalist Z. subfasciatus feeds on both bean species, and is sympatric with A. obtectus and A. obvelatus in the Mexican Altiplano, and with A. argillaceus in the Pacific coast. In order to assess the phylogenetic position of these four species, we amplified and sequenced one nuclear (28S rRNA and two mitochondrial (cytb, COI genes. Results Whereas species were well segregated in topologies obtained for COI and 28S rRNA, an unexpected pattern was obtained in the cytb phylogenetic tree. In this tree, individuals from A. obtectus and A. obvelatus, as well as Z. subfasciatus individuals from the Mexican Altiplano, clustered together in a unique little variable monophyletic unit. In contrast, A. argillaceus and Z. subfasciatus individuals from the Pacific coast clustered in two separated clades, identically to the pattern obtained for COI and 28S rRNA. An additional analysis showed that Z. subfasciatus individuals from the Mexican Altiplano also possessed the cytb gene present in individuals of this species from the Pacific coast. Zabrotes subfasciatus individuals from the Mexican Altiplano thus demonstrated two cytb genes, an "original" one and an "infectious" one, showing 25% of nucleotide divergence. The "infectious" cytb gene seems to be under purifying selection and to be expressed in mitochondria. Conclusion The high degree of incongruence of the cytb tree with patterns for other genes is discussed in the light of three hypotheses: experimental contamination

  6. Dynamic monitoring of horizontal gene transfer in soil (United States)

    Cheng, H. Y.; Masiello, C. A.; Silberg, J. J.; Bennett, G. N.


    Soil microbial gene expression underlies microbial behaviors (phenotypes) central to many aspects of C, N, and H2O cycling. However, continuous monitoring of microbial gene expression in soils is challenging because genetically-encoded reporter proteins widely used in the lab are difficult to deploy in soil matrices: for example, green fluorescent protein cannot be easily visualized in soils, even in the lab. To address this problem we have developed a reporter protein that releases small volatile gases. Here, we applied this gas reporter in a proof-of-concept soil experiment, monitoring horizontal gene transfer, a microbial activity that alters microbial genotypes and phenotypes. Horizontal gene transfer is central to bacterial evolution and adaptation and is relevant to problems such as the spread of antibiotic resistance, increasing metal tolerance in superfund sites, and bioremediation capability of bacterial consortia. This process is likely to be impacted by a number of matrix properties not well-represented in the petri dish, such as microscale variations in water, nutrients, and O2, making petri-dish experiments a poor proxy for environmental processes. We built a conjugation system using synthetic biology to demonstrate the use of gas-reporting biosensors in safe, lab-based biogeochemistry experiments, and here we report the use of these sensors to monitor horizontal gene transfer in soils. Our system is based on the F-plasmid conjugation in Escherichia coli. We have found that the gas signal reports on the number of cells that acquire F-plasmids (transconjugants) in a loamy Alfisol collected from Kellogg Biological Station. We will report how a gas signal generated by transconjugants varies with the number of F-plasmid donor and acceptor cells seeded in a soil, soil moisture, and soil O2 levels.

  7. Topology of magnetic flux ropes and formation of fossil flux transfer events and boundary layer plasmas (United States)

    Lee, L. C.; Ma, Z. W.; Fu, Z. F.; Otto, A.


    A mechanism for the formation of fossil flux transfer events and the low-level boundary layer within the framework of multiple X-line reconnection is proposed. Attention is given to conditions for which the bulk of magnetic flux in a flux rope of finite extent has a simple magnetic topology, where the four possible connections of magnetic field lines are: IMF to MSP, MSP to IMF, IMF to IMF, and MSP to MSP. For a sufficient relative shift of the X lines, magnetic flux may enter a flux rope from the magnetosphere and exit into the magnetosphere. This process leads to the formation of magnetic flux ropes which contain a considerable amount of magnetosheath plasma on closed magnetospheric field lines. This process is discussed as a possible explanation for the formation of fossil flux transfer events in the magnetosphere and the formation of the low-latitude boundary layer.

  8. Horizontal gene transfer is a significant driver of gene innovation in dinoflagellates. (United States)

    Wisecaver, Jennifer H; Brosnahan, Michael L; Hackett, Jeremiah D


    The dinoflagellates are an evolutionarily and ecologically important group of microbial eukaryotes. Previous work suggests that horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is an important source of gene innovation in these organisms. However, dinoflagellate genomes are notoriously large and complex, making genomic investigation of this phenomenon impractical with currently available sequencing technology. Fortunately, de novo transcriptome sequencing and assembly provides an alternative approach for investigating HGT. We sequenced the transcriptome of the dinoflagellate Alexandrium tamarense Group IV to investigate how HGT has contributed to gene innovation in this group. Our comprehensive A. tamarense Group IV gene set was compared with those of 16 other eukaryotic genomes. Ancestral gene content reconstruction of ortholog groups shows that A. tamarense Group IV has the largest number of gene families gained (314-1,563 depending on inference method) relative to all other organisms in the analysis (0-782). Phylogenomic analysis indicates that genes horizontally acquired from bacteria are a significant proportion of this gene influx, as are genes transferred from other eukaryotes either through HGT or endosymbiosis. The dinoflagellates also display curious cases of gene loss associated with mitochondrial metabolism including the entire Complex I of oxidative phosphorylation. Some of these missing genes have been functionally replaced by bacterial and eukaryotic xenologs. The transcriptome of A. tamarense Group IV lends strong support to a growing body of evidence that dinoflagellate genomes are extraordinarily impacted by HGT.

  9. Multiple phenotypic changes associated with large-scale horizontal gene transfer.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kevin Dougherty

    Full Text Available Horizontal gene transfer often leads to phenotypic changes within recipient organisms independent of any immediate evolutionary benefits. While secondary phenotypic effects of horizontal transfer (i.e., changes in growth rates have been demonstrated and studied across a variety of systems using relatively small plasmids and phage, little is known about the magnitude or number of such costs after the transfer of larger regions. Here we describe numerous phenotypic changes that occur after a large-scale horizontal transfer event (∼1 Mb megaplasmid within Pseudomonas stutzeri including sensitization to various stresses as well as changes in bacterial behavior. These results highlight the power of horizontal transfer to shift pleiotropic relationships and cellular networks within bacterial genomes. They also provide an important context for how secondary effects of transfer can bias evolutionary trajectories and interactions between species. Lastly, these results and system provide a foundation to investigate evolutionary consequences in real time as newly acquired regions are ameliorated and integrated into new genomic contexts.

  10. Multiple phenotypic changes associated with large-scale horizontal gene transfer. (United States)

    Dougherty, Kevin; Smith, Brian A; Moore, Autumn F; Maitland, Shannon; Fanger, Chris; Murillo, Rachel; Baltrus, David A


    Horizontal gene transfer often leads to phenotypic changes within recipient organisms independent of any immediate evolutionary benefits. While secondary phenotypic effects of horizontal transfer (i.e., changes in growth rates) have been demonstrated and studied across a variety of systems using relatively small plasmids and phage, little is known about the magnitude or number of such costs after the transfer of larger regions. Here we describe numerous phenotypic changes that occur after a large-scale horizontal transfer event (∼1 Mb megaplasmid) within Pseudomonas stutzeri including sensitization to various stresses as well as changes in bacterial behavior. These results highlight the power of horizontal transfer to shift pleiotropic relationships and cellular networks within bacterial genomes. They also provide an important context for how secondary effects of transfer can bias evolutionary trajectories and interactions between species. Lastly, these results and system provide a foundation to investigate evolutionary consequences in real time as newly acquired regions are ameliorated and integrated into new genomic contexts.

  11. Estimating the Frequency of Horizontal Gene Transfer Using Phylogenetic Models of Gene Gain and Loss. (United States)

    Zamani-Dahaj, Seyed Alireza; Okasha, Mohamed; Kosakowski, Jakub; Higgs, Paul G


    We analyze patterns of gene presence and absence in a maximum likelihood framework with rate parameters for gene gain and loss. Standard methods allow independent gains and losses in different parts of a tree. While losses of the same gene are likely to be frequent, multiple gains need to be considered carefully. A gene gain could occur by horizontal transfer or by origin of a gene within the lineage being studied. If a gene is gained more than once, then at least one of these gains must be a horizontal transfer. A key parameter is the ratio of gain to loss rates, a/v We consider the limiting case known as the infinitely many genes model, where a/v tends to zero and a gene cannot be gained more than once. The infinitely many genes model is used as a null model in comparison to models that allow multiple gains. Using genome data from cyanobacteria and archaea, it is found that the likelihood is significantly improved by allowing for multiple gains, but the average a/v is very small. The fraction of genes whose presence/absence pattern is best explained by multiple gains is only 15% in the cyanobacteria and 20% and 39% in two data sets of archaea. The distribution of rates of gene loss is very broad, which explains why many genes follow a treelike pattern of vertical inheritance, despite the presence of a significant minority of genes that undergo horizontal transfer. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail:

  12. Simultaneous observations of magnetopause flux transfer events and of their associated signatures at ionospheric altitudes

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    K. A. McWilliams


    Full Text Available An extensive variety of instruments, including Geotail, DMSP F11, SuperDARN, and IMP-8, were monitoring the dayside magnetosphere and ionosphere between 14:00 and 18:00 UT on 18 January 1999. The location of the instruments provided an excellent opportunity to study in detail the direct coupling between the solar wind, the magnetosphere, and the ionosphere. Flux transfer events were observed by Geotail near the magnetopause in the dawn side magnetosheath at about 4 magnetic local time during exclusively northward interplanetary magnetic field conditions. Excellent coverage of the entire dayside high-latitude ionosphere was achieved by the Northern Hemisphere SuperDARN radars. On the large scale, temporally and spatially, the dayside magnetosphere convection remained directly driven by the interplanetary magnetic field, despite the highly variable interplanetary magnetic field conditions, including long periods of northward field. The SuperDARN radars in the dawn sector also measured small-scale temporally varying convection velocities, which are indicative of flux transfer event activity, in the vicinity of the magnetic footprint of Geotail. DMSP F11 in the Southern Hemisphere measured typical cusp precipitation simultaneously with and magnetically conjugate to a single flux transfer event signature detected by Geotail. A study of the characteristics of the DMSP ion spectrogram revealed that the source plasma from the reconnection site originated downstream of the subsolar point. Detailed analyses of locally optimised coordinate systems for individual flux transfer events at Geotail are consistent with a series of flux tubes protruding from the magnetopause, and originating from a high-latitude reconnection site in the Southern Hemisphere. This high-latitude reconnection site agrees with plasma injected away from the subsolar point. This is the first simultaneous and independent determination from ionospheric and space-based data of the

  13. Horizontal gene transfers and cell fusions in microbiology, immunology and oncology (Review). (United States)

    Sinkovics, Joseph G


    Evolving young genomes of archaea, prokaryota and unicellular eukaryota were wide open for the acceptance of alien genomic sequences, which they often preserved and vertically transferred to their descendants throughout three billion years of evolution. Established complex large genomes, although seeded with ancestral retroelements, have come to regulate strictly their integrity. However, intruding retroelements, especially the descendents of Ty3/Gypsy, the chromoviruses, continue to find their ways into even the most established genomes. The simian and hominoid-Homo genomes preserved and accommodated a large number of endogenous retroviral genomic segments. These retroelements may mature into exogenous retroviruses, or into functional new genes. Phages and viruses have been instrumental in incorporating and transferring host cell genes. These events profoundly influenced and altered the course of evolution. Horizontal (lateral) gene transfers (HGT) overwhelmed the genomes of the ancient protocells and the evolving unicellular microorganisms, actually leading to their Cambrian explosion. While the rigidly organized genomes of multicellular organisms increasingly resist H/LGT, de-differentiated cells assuming the metabolism of their onto- or phylogenetic ancestors, open up widely to the practice of H/LGT by direct transfer, or to transfers mediated by viruses, or by cell fusions. This activity is intensified in malignantly transformed cells, thus rendering these subjects receptive to therapy with oncolytic viruses and with viral vectors of tumor-suppressive or immunogenic genetic materials. Naturally formed hybrids of dendritic and tumor cells are often tolerogenic, whereas laboratory products of these unisons may be immunogenic in the hosts of origin. As human breast cancer stem cells are induced by a treacherous class of CD8+ T cells to undergo epithelial to mesenchymal (ETM) transition and to yield to malignant transformation by the omnipresent proto

  14. Proteorhodopsin lateral gene transfer between marine planktonic Bacteria and Archaea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frigaard, Niels-Ulrik; Martinez, Asuncion; Mincer, Tracy J


    Planktonic Bacteria, Archaea and Eukarya reside and compete in the ocean's photic zone under the pervasive influence of light. Bacteria in this environment were recently shown to contain photoproteins called proteorhodopsins, thought to contribute to cellular energy metabolism by catalysing light......-driven proton translocation across the cell membrane. So far, proteorhodopsin genes have been well documented only in proteobacteria and a few other bacterial groups. Here we report the presence and distribution of proteorhodopsin genes in Archaea affiliated with the order Thermoplasmatales, in the ocean......'s upper water column. The genomic context and phylogenetic relationships of the archaeal and proteobacterial proteorhodopsins indicate its probable lateral transfer between planktonic Bacteria and Archaea. About 10% of the euryarchaeotes in the photic zone contained the proteorhodopsin gene adjacent...

  15. Evidence for horizontal gene transfer of anaerobic carbon monoxide dehydrogenases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen eTechtmann


    Full Text Available Carbon monoxide (CO is commonly known as a toxic gas, yet it is used by both aerobic and anaerobic bacteria and many archaea. In this study, we determined the prevalence of anaerobic carbon monoxide dehydrogenases (anaerobic CODHs, or [Ni,Fe]-CODHs in currently available genomic sequence databases. More than 6% (185 genomes out of 2887 bacterial and archaeal genome sequences in the IMG database possess at least one gene encoding [Ni,Fe]-CODH, the key enzyme for anaerobic CO utilization. The phylogenetic study of this extended protein family revealed nine distinct clades of [Ni,Fe]-CODHs. These clades consisted of [Ni,Fe]-CODHs that, while apparently monophyletic within the clades, were encoded by microorganisms of disparate phylogeny, based on 16S rRNA sequences, and widely ranging physiology. Following this discovery, it was therefore of interest to examine the extent and possible routes of horizontal gene transfer (HGT affecting [Ni,Fe]-CODH genes and gene clusters that include [Ni,Fe]-CODHs.The genome sequence of the extreme thermophile Thermosinus carboxydivorans was used as a case study for HGT. The [Ni,Fe]-CODH operon of T. carboxydivorans differs from its whole genome in its G+C content by 8.2 mol%. Here, we apply statistical methods to establish acquisition by T. carboxydivorans of the gene cluster including [Ni,Fe]-CODH via HGT. Analysis of tetranucleotide frequency and codon usage with application of the Kullback-Leibler divergence metric showed that the [Ni,Fe]-CODH-1 operon of T. carboxidyvorans is quite dissimilar to the whole genome. Using the same metrics, the T. carboxydivorans [Ni,Fe]-CODH-1 operon is highly similar to the genome of the phylogenetically distant anaerobic carboxydotroph Carboxydothermus hydrogenoformans. These results allow to assume recent HTG of the gene cluster from a relative of C. hydrogenoformans to T. carboxydivorans or a more ancient transfer from a C. hydrogenoformans ancestor to a T. carboxydivorans

  16. Calculating the Motion and Direction of Flux Transfer Events with Cluster (United States)

    Collado-Vega, Y. M.; Sibeck, D. G.


    For many years now, the interactions of the solar wind plasma with the Earth's magnetosphere has been one of the most important problems for Space Physics. It is very important that we understand these processes because the high-energy particles and also the solar wind energy that cross the magneto sphere could be responsible for serious damage to our technological systems. The solar wind is inherently a dynamic medium, and the particles interaction with the Earth's magnetosphere can be steady or unsteady. Unsteady interaction include transient processes like bursty magnetic reconnection. Flux Transfer Events (FTEs) are magnetopause signatures that usually occur during transient times of reconnection. They exhibit bipolar signatures in the normal component of the magnetic field. We use multi-point timing analysis to determine the orientation and motion of ux transfer events (FTEs) detected by the four Cluster spacecraft on the high-latitude dayside and flank magnetopause during 2002 and 2003. During these years, the distances between the Cluster spacecraft were greater than 1000 km, providing the tetrahedral configuration needed to select events and determine velocities. Each velocity and location will be examined in detail and compared to the velocities and locations determined by the predictions of the component and antiparallel reconnection models for event formation, orientation, motion, and acceleration for a wide range of spacecraft locations and solar wind conditions.

  17. Site-specific integration and tailoring of cassette design for sustainable gene transfer. (United States)

    Lombardo, Angelo; Cesana, Daniela; Genovese, Pietro; Di Stefano, Bruno; Provasi, Elena; Colombo, Daniele F; Neri, Margherita; Magnani, Zulma; Cantore, Alessio; Lo Riso, Pietro; Damo, Martina; Pello, Oscar M; Holmes, Michael C; Gregory, Philip D; Gritti, Angela; Broccoli, Vania; Bonini, Chiara; Naldini, Luigi


    Integrative gene transfer methods are limited by variable transgene expression and by the consequences of random insertional mutagenesis that confound interpretation in gene-function studies and may cause adverse events in gene therapy. Site-specific integration may overcome these hurdles. Toward this goal, we studied the transcriptional and epigenetic impact of different transgene expression cassettes, targeted by engineered zinc-finger nucleases to the CCR5 and AAVS1 genomic loci of human cells. Analyses performed before and after integration defined features of the locus and cassette design that together allow robust transgene expression without detectable transcriptional perturbation of the targeted locus and its flanking genes in many cell types, including primary human lymphocytes. We thus provide a framework for sustainable gene transfer in AAVS1 that can be used for dependable genetic manipulation, neutral marking of the cell and improved safety of therapeutic applications, and demonstrate its feasibility by rapidly generating human lymphocytes and stem cells carrying targeted and benign transgene insertions.

  18. Evolutionary analysis and lateral gene transfer of two-component regulatory systems associated with heavy-metal tolerance in bacteria. (United States)

    Bouzat, Juan L; Hoostal, Matthew J


    Microorganisms have adapted intricate signal transduction mechanisms to coordinate tolerance to toxic levels of metals, including two-component regulatory systems (TCRS). In particular, both cop and czc operons are regulated by TCRS; the cop operon plays a key role in bacterial tolerance to copper, whereas the czc operon is involved in the efflux of cadmium, zinc, and cobalt from the cell. Although the molecular physiology of heavy metal tolerance genes has been extensively studied, their evolutionary relationships are not well-understood. Phylogenetic relationships among heavy-metal efflux proteins and their corresponding two-component regulatory proteins revealed orthologous and paralogous relationships from species divergences and ancient gene duplications. The presence of heavy metal tolerance genes on bacterial plasmids suggests these genes may be prone to spread through horizontal gene transfer. Phylogenetic inferences revealed nine potential examples of lateral gene transfer associated with metal efflux proteins and two examples for regulatory proteins. Notably, four of the examples suggest lateral transfer across major evolutionary domains. In most cases, differences in GC content in metal tolerance genes and their corresponding host genomes confirmed lateral gene transfer events. Three-dimensional protein structures predicted for the response regulators encoded by cop and czc operons showed a high degree of structural similarity with other known proteins involved in TCRS signal transduction, which suggests common evolutionary origins of functional phenotypes and similar mechanisms of action for these response regulators.

  19. Identification of a saxitoxin biosynthesis gene with a history of frequent horizontal gene transfers. (United States)

    Kellmann, Ralf; Mihali, Troco Kaan; Michali, Troco Kaan; Neilan, Brett Anthony; Neilan, Brett Adam


    The paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP) toxins, saxitoxin, and its derivatives, are produced by a complex and unique biosynthetic pathway. It involves reactions that are rare in other metabolic pathways, however, distantly related organisms, such as dinoflagellates and cyanobacteria, produce these toxins by an identical pathway. Speculative explanations for the unusual phylogenetic distribution of this metabolic pathway have been proposed, including a polyphyletic origin, the involvement of symbiotic bacteria, and horizontal gene transfer. This study describes for the first time the identity of one gene, sxt1, that is involved in the biosynthesis of saxitoxin in cyanobacteria. It encoded an O-carbamoyltransferase (OCTASE) that was proposed to carbamoylate the hydroxymethyl side chain of saxitoxin precursor. Orthologues of sxt1 were exclusively present in PSP-toxic strains of cyanobacteria and had a high sequence similarity to each other. L. wollei had a naturally mutated sxt1 gene that encoded an inactive enzyme, and was incapable of producing carbamoylated PSP-toxin analogues, supporting the proposed function of Sxt1. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that OCATSE genes were present exclusively in prokaryotic organisms and were characterized by a high rate of horizontal gene transfer. OCTASE has most likely evolved from an ancestral O-sialoglycoprotein endopeptidase from proteobacteria, whereas the most likely phylogenetic origin of sxt1 was an ancestral alpha-proteobacterium. The phylogeny of sxt1 suggested that the entire set of genes required for saxitoxin biosynthesis may spread by horizontal gene transfer.

  20. Gene ontology based transfer learning for protein subcellular localization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhou Shuigeng


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Prediction of protein subcellular localization generally involves many complex factors, and using only one or two aspects of data information may not tell the true story. For this reason, some recent predictive models are deliberately designed to integrate multiple heterogeneous data sources for exploiting multi-aspect protein feature information. Gene ontology, hereinafter referred to as GO, uses a controlled vocabulary to depict biological molecules or gene products in terms of biological process, molecular function and cellular component. With the rapid expansion of annotated protein sequences, gene ontology has become a general protein feature that can be used to construct predictive models in computational biology. Existing models generally either concatenated the GO terms into a flat binary vector or applied majority-vote based ensemble learning for protein subcellular localization, both of which can not estimate the individual discriminative abilities of the three aspects of gene ontology. Results In this paper, we propose a Gene Ontology Based Transfer Learning Model (GO-TLM for large-scale protein subcellular localization. The model transfers the signature-based homologous GO terms to the target proteins, and further constructs a reliable learning system to reduce the adverse affect of the potential false GO terms that are resulted from evolutionary divergence. We derive three GO kernels from the three aspects of gene ontology to measure the GO similarity of two proteins, and derive two other spectrum kernels to measure the similarity of two protein sequences. We use simple non-parametric cross validation to explicitly weigh the discriminative abilities of the five kernels, such that the time & space computational complexities are greatly reduced when compared to the complicated semi-definite programming and semi-indefinite linear programming. The five kernels are then linearly merged into one single kernel for

  1. Novel recA-Independent Horizontal Gene Transfer in Escherichia coli K-12.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anthony W Kingston

    Full Text Available In bacteria, mechanisms that incorporate DNA into a genome without strand-transfer proteins such as RecA play a major role in generating novelty by horizontal gene transfer. We describe a new illegitimate recombination event in Escherichia coli K-12: RecA-independent homologous replacements, with very large (megabase-length donor patches replacing recipient DNA. A previously uncharacterized gene (yjiP increases the frequency of RecA-independent replacement recombination. To show this, we used conjugal DNA transfer, combining a classical conjugation donor, HfrH, with modern genome engineering methods and whole genome sequencing analysis to enable interrogation of genetic dependence of integration mechanisms and characterization of recombination products. As in classical experiments, genomic DNA transfer begins at a unique position in the donor, entering the recipient via conjugation; antibiotic resistance markers are then used to select recombinant progeny. Different configurations of this system were used to compare known mechanisms for stable DNA incorporation, including homologous recombination, F'-plasmid formation, and genome duplication. A genome island of interest known as the immigration control region was specifically replaced in a minority of recombinants, at a frequency of 3 X 10(-12 CFU/recipient per hour.

  2. Horizontal gene transfer in osmotrophs: playing with public goods. (United States)

    Richards, Thomas A; Talbot, Nicholas J


    Osmotrophic microorganisms, such as fungi and oomycetes, feed by secreting depolymerizing enzymes to process complex food sources in the extracellular environment, and taking up the resulting simple sugars, micronutrients and amino acids. As a consequence of this lifestyle, osmotrophs engage in the acquisition and protection of public goods. In this Opinion article, we propose that horizontal gene transfer (HGT) has played a key part in shaping both the repertoire of proteins required for osmotrophy and the nature of public goods interactions in which eukaryotic microorganisms engage.

  3. Gene transfer in Nocotiana rustica using irradiated pollen

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jinks, J.L.; Caligari, P.D.S.; Ingram, N.R. (Birmingham Univ. (UK))


    The results of a selection study of major gene controlled characters, using 10 - 20 krad ..gamma.. irradiated pollen of Nicotiana rustica, are reported. By selecting within the progenies it has been shown that lines can be isolated with the characteristics of the pure-breeding maternal variety but with the exception of a specific characteristic transferred from the paternal variety. The advantages of the irradiation technique as against the conventional system requiring a combination of many generations of recurrent backcrossing and selection are stressed.

  4. Massive mitochondrial gene transfer in a parasitic flowering plant clade.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhenxiang Xi

    Full Text Available Recent studies have suggested that plant genomes have undergone potentially rampant horizontal gene transfer (HGT, especially in the mitochondrial genome. Parasitic plants have provided the strongest evidence of HGT, which appears to be facilitated by the intimate physical association between the parasites and their hosts. A recent phylogenomic study demonstrated that in the holoparasite Rafflesia cantleyi (Rafflesiaceae, whose close relatives possess the world's largest flowers, about 2.1% of nuclear gene transcripts were likely acquired from its obligate host. Here, we used next-generation sequencing to obtain the 38 protein-coding and ribosomal RNA genes common to the mitochondrial genomes of angiosperms from R. cantleyi and five additional species, including two of its closest relatives and two host species. Strikingly, our phylogenetic analyses conservatively indicate that 24%-41% of these gene sequences show evidence of HGT in Rafflesiaceae, depending on the species. Most of these transgenic sequences possess intact reading frames and are actively transcribed, indicating that they are potentially functional. Additionally, some of these transgenes maintain synteny with their donor and recipient lineages, suggesting that native genes have likely been displaced via homologous recombination. Our study is the first to comprehensively assess the magnitude of HGT in plants involving a genome (i.e., mitochondria and a species interaction (i.e., parasitism where it has been hypothesized to be potentially rampant. Our results establish for the first time that, although the magnitude of HGT involving nuclear genes is appreciable in these parasitic plants, HGT involving mitochondrial genes is substantially higher. This may represent a more general pattern for other parasitic plant clades and perhaps more broadly for angiosperms.

  5. Massive mitochondrial gene transfer in a parasitic flowering plant clade. (United States)

    Xi, Zhenxiang; Wang, Yuguo; Bradley, Robert K; Sugumaran, M; Marx, Christopher J; Rest, Joshua S; Davis, Charles C


    Recent studies have suggested that plant genomes have undergone potentially rampant horizontal gene transfer (HGT), especially in the mitochondrial genome. Parasitic plants have provided the strongest evidence of HGT, which appears to be facilitated by the intimate physical association between the parasites and their hosts. A recent phylogenomic study demonstrated that in the holoparasite Rafflesia cantleyi (Rafflesiaceae), whose close relatives possess the world's largest flowers, about 2.1% of nuclear gene transcripts were likely acquired from its obligate host. Here, we used next-generation sequencing to obtain the 38 protein-coding and ribosomal RNA genes common to the mitochondrial genomes of angiosperms from R. cantleyi and five additional species, including two of its closest relatives and two host species. Strikingly, our phylogenetic analyses conservatively indicate that 24%-41% of these gene sequences show evidence of HGT in Rafflesiaceae, depending on the species. Most of these transgenic sequences possess intact reading frames and are actively transcribed, indicating that they are potentially functional. Additionally, some of these transgenes maintain synteny with their donor and recipient lineages, suggesting that native genes have likely been displaced via homologous recombination. Our study is the first to comprehensively assess the magnitude of HGT in plants involving a genome (i.e., mitochondria) and a species interaction (i.e., parasitism) where it has been hypothesized to be potentially rampant. Our results establish for the first time that, although the magnitude of HGT involving nuclear genes is appreciable in these parasitic plants, HGT involving mitochondrial genes is substantially higher. This may represent a more general pattern for other parasitic plant clades and perhaps more broadly for angiosperms.

  6. Horizontal Gene Transfer of Pectinases from Bacteria Preceded the Diversification of Stick and Leaf Insects

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Shelomi, Matan; Danchin, Etienne G J; Heckel, David; Wipfler, Benjamin; Bradler, Sven; Zhou, Xin; Pauchet, Yannick


    ...) genes in stick insects (Phasmatodea). By mapping the distribution of pectinase genes on a Polyneoptera phylogeny, we identified the transfer of pectinase genes from known phasmatodean gut microbes into the genome of an early...

  7. Transcriptional reprogramming of gene expression in bovine somatic cell chromatin transfer embryos

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Page Grier P


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Successful reprogramming of a somatic genome to produce a healthy clone by somatic cells nuclear transfer (SCNT is a rare event and the mechanisms involved in this process are poorly defined. When serial or successive rounds of cloning are performed, blastocyst and full term development rates decline even further with the increasing rounds of cloning. Identifying the "cumulative errors" could reveal the epigenetic reprogramming blocks in animal cloning. Results Bovine clones from up to four generations of successive cloning were produced by chromatin transfer (CT. Using Affymetrix bovine microarrays we determined that the transcriptomes of blastocysts derived from the first and the fourth rounds of cloning (CT1 and CT4 respectively have undergone an extensive reprogramming and were more similar to blastocysts derived from in vitro fertilization (IVF than to the donor cells used for the first and the fourth rounds of chromatin transfer (DC1 and DC4 respectively. However a set of transcripts in the cloned embryos showed a misregulated pattern when compared to IVF embryos. Among the genes consistently upregulated in both CT groups compared to the IVF embryos were genes involved in regulation of cytoskeleton and cell shape. Among the genes consistently upregulated in IVF embryos compared to both CT groups were genes involved in chromatin remodelling and stress coping. Conclusion The present study provides a data set that could contribute in our understanding of epigenetic errors in somatic cell chromatin transfer. Identifying "cumulative errors" after serial cloning could reveal some of the epigenetic reprogramming blocks shedding light on the reprogramming process, important for both basic and applied research.

  8. Phylogeographic reconstruction of a bacterial species with high levels of lateral gene transfer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaul Rajinder


    . Conclusion We describe an Australian origin for B. pseudomallei, characterized by a single introduction event into Southeast Asia during a recent glacial period, and variable levels of lateral gene transfer within populations. These patterns provide insights into mechanisms of genetic diversification in B. pseudomallei and its closest relatives, and provide a framework for integrating the traditionally separate fields of population genetics and phylogenetics for other bacterial species with high levels of lateral gene transfer.

  9. An evolutionary analysis of lateral gene transfer in thymidylate synthase enzymes. (United States)

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


    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.

  10. An event-driven approach for studying gene block evolution in bacteria. (United States)

    Ream, David C; Bankapur, Asma R; Friedberg, Iddo


    Gene blocks are genes co-located on the chromosome. In many cases, gene blocks are conserved between bacterial species, sometimes as operons, when genes are co-transcribed. The conservation is rarely absolute: gene loss, gain, duplication, block splitting and block fusion are frequently observed. An open question in bacterial molecular evolution is that of the formation and breakup of gene blocks, for which several models have been proposed. These models, however, are not generally applicable to all types of gene blocks, and consequently cannot be used to broadly compare and study gene block evolution. To address this problem, we introduce an event-based method for tracking gene block evolution in bacteria. We show here that the evolution of gene blocks in proteobacteria can be described by a small set of events. Those include the insertion of genes into, or the splitting of genes out of a gene block, gene loss, and gene duplication. We show how the event-based method of gene block evolution allows us to determine the evolutionary rateand may be used to trace the ancestral states of their formation. We conclude that the event-based method can be used to help us understand the formation of these important bacterial genomic structures. The software is available under GPLv3 license on Supplementary online material: © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press.

  11. Gene Transfer and Molecular Cloning of the Human NGF Receptor (United States)

    Chao, Moses V.; Bothwell, Mark A.; Ross, Alonzo H.; Koprowski, Hilary; Lanahan, Anthony A.; Buck, C. Randall; Sehgal, Amita


    Nerve growth factor (NGF) and its receptor are important in the development of cells derived from the neural crest. Mouse L cell transformants have been generated that stably express the human NGF receptor gene transfer with total human DNA. Affinity cross-linking, metabolic labeling and immunoprecipitation, and equilibrium binding with 125I-labeled NGF revealed that this NGF receptor had the same size and binding characteristics as the receptor from human melanoma cells and rat PC12 cells. The sequences encoding the NGF receptor were molecularly cloned using the human Alu repetitive sequence as a probe. A cosmid clone that contained the human NGF receptor gene allowed efficient transfection and expression of the receptor.

  12. Recombination and horizontal transfer of nodulation and ACC deaminase (acdS) genes within Alpha- and Betaproteobacteria nodulating legumes of the Cape Fynbos biome. (United States)

    Lemaire, Benny; Van Cauwenberghe, Jannick; Chimphango, Samson; Stirton, Charles; Honnay, Olivier; Smets, Erik; Muasya, A Muthama


    The goal of this work is to study the evolution and the degree of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) within rhizobial genera of both Alphaproteobacteria (Mesorhizobium, Rhizobium) and Betaproteobacteria (Burkholderia), originating from South African Fynbos legumes. By using a phylogenetic approach and comparing multiple chromosomal and symbiosis genes, we revealed conclusive evidence of high degrees of horizontal transfer of nodulation genes among closely related species of both groups of rhizobia, but also among species with distant genetic backgrounds (Rhizobium and Mesorhizobium), underscoring the importance of lateral transfer of symbiosis traits as an important evolutionary force among rhizobia of the Cape Fynbos biome. The extensive exchange of symbiosis genes in the Fynbos is in contrast with a lack of significant events of HGT among Burkholderia symbionts from the South American Cerrado and Caatinga biome. Furthermore, homologous recombination among selected housekeeping genes had a substantial impact on sequence evolution within Burkholderia and Mesorhizobium. Finally, phylogenetic analyses of the non-symbiosis acdS gene in Mesorhizobium, a gene often located on symbiosis islands, revealed distinct relationships compared to the chromosomal and symbiosis genes, suggesting a different evolutionary history and independent events of gene transfer. The observed events of HGT and incongruence between different genes necessitate caution in interpreting topologies from individual data types.

  13. Interleukin-10 Gene Transfer in Rat Limbal Transplantation. (United States)

    Kaufmann, Claude; Mortimer, Lauren A; Brereton, Helen M; Irani, Yazad D; Parker, Douglas Ga; Anson, Donald S; Bachmann, Lucas M; Williams, Keryn A


    To evaluate the gene transfer of the interleukin (IL)-10 cytokine as a treatment modality for prolonging limbal allograft survival in a rat model. Adenoviral (AV) and lentiviral (LV) vectors were produced for ex vivo gene transfer into limbal graft tissue prior to orthotopic transplantation. Experimental groups comprised unmodified isografts, unmodified allografts, allografts transfected with a reporter gene, and allografts transfected with IL-10. The functional effects of the transgenes were determined by clinical assessment and by following donor cell survival in the recipient animal. Group comparisons were made using survival analysis and tested with the log-rank test. Differences in mean rejection times between groups were tested using the Wilcoxon rank-sum test. Isografts survived during the entire observation period of 56 days. Allografts underwent clinical rejection at a mean of 6.7 days (standard deviation 2.0) postoperatively, irrespective of the presence of transgenes (p < 0.001 for difference in rejection times). For both the AV and LV vector systems, Kaplan-Meier analysis showed a statistically significant difference with respect to time-to-graft failure when comparing allografts transfected with IL-10 with allografts transfected with reporter gene alone (p = 0.011 and p < 0.001, respectively). In the isografts, donor cells could be detected during the complete observation period. In all the allograft groups, however, donor cell detection declined after 1 week and was lost after 4 weeks. Under the conditions tested in the present model, both the AV and the LV vector systems were able to transfect limbal graft tissue ex vivo with biologically active IL-10, leading to delayed rejection compared to the controls.

  14. Study on magnetic gene transfer using HTS bulk magnet

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nakagawa, Kota, E-mail: [Graduate School of Engineering, Osaka University, Yamadaoka 2-1, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Ohaku, Yoshihiro; Tamada, Junya; Mishima, Fumihito; Akiyama, Yoko [Graduate School of Engineering, Osaka University, Yamadaoka 2-1, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Osako, Mariana Kiomy; Nakagami, Hironori [Graduate School of Medicine, Osaka University, Yamadaoka 2-1, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Nishijima, Shigehiro [Graduate School of Engineering, Osaka University, Yamadaoka 2-1, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan)


    Highlights: •DNA–magnetite complexes were prepared as ferromagnetic DNA carrier. •The condition of magnetic field to suppress the diffusion was found by calculation. •The result of model experiment showed the validity of the calculated value. •The results of in vivo experiments showed that the amount of gene expression was significantly increased by magnetic field. -- Abstract: This study aimed to realize local and high-efficient gene expression by suppressing the diffusion of ferromagnetic DNA carriers in a strong magnetic field generated by HTS bulk magnet. DNA–magnetite complexes were prepared as ferromagnetic DNA carrier and the magnetic gene transfer using the DNA carriers was examined. From the results of the simulation and the model experiment, it was shown that the particle diffusion was suppressed within 10 mm in diameter by the magnetic field at 20 mm above the HTS bulk magnet. The results of in vivo experiments showed that the amount of gene expression was significantly increased by magnetic field.

  15. Genome-wide experimental determination of barriers to horizontal gene transfer

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rubin, Edward; Sorek, Rotem; Zhu, Yiwen; Creevey, Christopher J.; Francino, M. Pilar; Bork, Peer; Rubin, Edward M.


    Horizontal gene transfer, in which genetic material is transferred from the genome of one organism to another, has been investigated in microbial species mainly through computational sequence analyses. To address the lack of experimental data, we studied the attempted movement of 246,045 genes from 79 prokaryotic genomes into E. coli and identified genes that consistently fail to transfer. We studied the mechanisms underlying transfer inhibition by placing coding regions from different species under the control of inducible promoters. Their toxicity to the host inhibited transfer regardless of the species of origin and our data suggest that increased gene dosage and associated increased expression is a predominant cause for transfer failure. While these experimental studies examined transfer solely into E. coli, a computational analysis of gene transfer rates across available bacterial and archaeal genomes indicates that the barriers observed in our study are general across the tree of life.

  16. Phylogeny of chitinases and its implications for estimating horizontal gene transfer from chitinase-transgenic silver birch (Betula pendula). (United States)

    Lohtander, Katileena; Pasonen, Hanna-Leena; Aalto, Markku K; Palva, Tapio; Pappinen, Ari; Rikkinen, Jouko


    Chitinases are hydrolytic enzymes that have been employed in biotechnology in attempts to increase plants' resistance against fungal pathogens. Genetically modified plants have given rise to concerns of the spreading of transgenes into the environment through vertical or horizontal gene transfer (HGT). In this study, chitinase-like sequences from silver birch (Betula pendula) EST-libraries were identified and their phylogenetic relationships to other chitinases were studied. Phylogenetic analyses were used to estimate the frequency of historical gene transfer events of chitinase genes between plants and other organisms, and the usefulness of phylogenetic analyses as a source of information for the risk assessment of transgenic silver birch carrying a sugar beet chitinase IV gene was evaluated. Thirteen partial chitinase-like sequences, with an approximate length of 600 bp, were obtained from the EST-libraries. The sequences belonged to five chitinase classes. Some bacterial chitinases from Streptomyces and Burkholderia, as well as a chitinase from an oomycete, Phytophthora infestans, grouped together with the class IV chitinases of plants, supporting the hypothesis that some class IV chitinases in bacteria have evolved from eukaryotic chitinases via horizontal gene transfer. According to our analyses, HGT of a chitinase IV gene from eukaryotes to bacteria has presumably occurred only once. Based on this, the likelihood for the HGT of chitinase IV gene from transgenic birch to other organisms is extremely low. However, as risk is a function of both the likelihood and consequences of an event, the effects of rare HGT event(s) will finally determine the level of the risk.

  17. Phylogenomic study indicates widespread lateral gene transfer in Entamoeba and suggests a past intimate relationship with parabasalids. (United States)

    Grant, Jessica R; Katz, Laura A


    Lateral gene transfer (LGT) has impacted the evolutionary history of eukaryotes, though to a lesser extent than in bacteria and archaea. Detecting LGT and distinguishing it from single gene tree artifacts is difficult, particularly when considering very ancient events (i.e., over hundreds of millions of years). Here, we use two independent lines of evidence--a taxon-rich phylogenetic approach and an assessment of the patterns of gene presence/absence--to evaluate the extent of LGT in the parasitic amoebozoan genus Entamoeba. Previous work has suggested that a number of genes in the genome of Entamoeba spp. were acquired by LGT. Our approach, using an automated phylogenomic pipeline to build taxon-rich gene trees, suggests that LGT is more extensive than previously thought. Our analyses reveal that genes have frequently entered the Entamoeba genome via nonvertical events, including at least 116 genes acquired directly from bacteria or archaea, plus an additional 22 genes in which Entamoeba plus one other eukaryote are nested among bacteria and/or archaea. These genes may make good candidates for novel therapeutics, as drugs targeting these genes are less likely to impact the human host. Although we recognize the challenges of inferring intradomain transfers given systematic errors in gene trees, we find 109 genes supporting LGT from a eukaryote to Entamoeba spp., and 178 genes unique to Entamoeba spp. and one other eukaryotic taxon (i.e., presence/absence data). Inspection of these intradomain LGTs provide evidence of a common sister relationship between genes of Entamoeba (Amoebozoa) and parabasalids (Excavata). We speculate that this indicates a past close relationship (e.g., symbiosis) between ancestors of these extant lineages.

  18. Spatial and Temporal Signatures of Flux Transfer Events in Global Simulations of Magnetopause Dynamics (United States)

    Kuznetsova, Maria M.; Sibeck, David Gary; Hesse, Michael; Berrios, David; Rastaetter, Lutz; Toth, Gabor; Gombosi, Tamas I.


    Flux transfer events (FTEs) were originally identified by transient bipolar variations of the magnetic field component normal to the nominal magnetopause centered on enhancements in the total magnetic field strength. Recent Cluster and THEMIS multi-point measurements provided a wide range of signatures that are interpreted as evidence for FTE passage (e.g., crater FTE's, traveling magnetic erosion regions). We use the global magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) code BATS-R-US developed at the University of Michigan to model the global three-dimensional structure and temporal evolution of FTEs during multi-spacecraft magnetopause crossing events. Comparison of observed and simulated signatures and sensitivity analysis of the results to the probe location will be presented. We will demonstrate a variety of observable signatures in magnetic field profile that depend on space probe location with respect to the FTE passage. The global structure of FTEs will be illustrated using advanced visualization tools developed at the Community Coordinated Modeling Center

  19. Flux transfer events on the magnetopause - Spatial distribution and controlling factors (United States)

    Berchem, J.; Russell, C. T.


    The spatial distribution of flux transfer events (FTE) of magnetic flux tubes pulled from the earth's magnetopause is analyzed using ISEE 1 and 2 data from 1977-82. Attention is given to interplanetary conditions influencing different observed FTE polarities. FTEs were observed on nearly 25 percent of the passes near the dayside magnetopause. Direct FTEs were located mainly in the northern dawn sector and reverse FTEs appeared in the southern dusk sector. The distribution indicated an origin in the equatorial sector, and data correlate the appearance of FTEs only when the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) had southward or nearly horizontal orientation. The presence of a southward component in the IMF was coincident with the appearance of an FTE 45 percent of the events. E-W components in the IMF exhibited no connections with the occurrence of an FTE.

  20. Intra- and inter-generic transfer of pathogenicity island-encoded virulence genes by cos phages. (United States)

    Chen, John; Carpena, Nuria; Quiles-Puchalt, Nuria; Ram, Geeta; Novick, Richard P; Penadés, José R


    Bacteriophage-mediated horizontal gene transfer is one of the primary driving forces of bacterial evolution. The pac-type phages are generally thought to facilitate most of the phage-mediated gene transfer between closely related bacteria, including that of mobile genetic elements-encoded virulence genes. In this study, we report that staphylococcal cos-type phages transferred the Staphylococcus aureus pathogenicity island SaPIbov5 to non-aureus staphylococcal species and also to different genera. Our results describe the first intra- and intergeneric transfer of a pathogenicity island by a cos phage, and highlight a gene transfer mechanism that may have important implications for pathogen evolution.

  1. Resolution and reconciliation of non-binary gene trees with transfers, duplications and losses. (United States)

    Jacox, Edwin; Weller, Mathias; Tannier, Eric; Scornavacca, Celine


    Gene trees reconstructed from sequence alignments contain poorly supported branches when the phylogenetic signal in the sequences is insufficient to determine them all. When a species tree is available, the signal of gains and losses of genes can be used to correctly resolve the unsupported parts of the gene history. However finding a most parsimonious binary resolution of a non-binary tree obtained by contracting the unsupported branches is NP-hard if transfer events are considered as possible gene scale events, in addition to gene origination, duplication and loss. We propose an exact, parameterized algorithm to solve this problem in single-exponential time, where the parameter is the number of connected branches of the gene tree that show low support from the sequence alignment or, equivalently, the maximum number of children of any node of the gene tree once the low-support branches have been collapsed. This improves on the best known algorithm by an exponential factor. We propose a way to choose among optimal solutions based on the available information. We show the usability of this principle on several simulated and biological datasets. The results are comparable in quality to several other tested methods having similar goals, but our approach provides a lower running time and a guarantee that the produced solution is optimal. Our algorithm has been integrated into the ecceTERA phylogeny package, available at and which can be run online at . Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

  2. Motion of flux transfer events: a test of the Cooling model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. C. Fear


    Full Text Available The simple model of reconnected field line motion developed by Cooling et al. (2001 has been used in several recent case studies to explain the motion of flux transfer events across the magnetopause. We examine 213 FTEs observed by all four Cluster spacecraft under a variety of IMF conditions between November 2002 and June 2003, when the spacecraft tetrahedron separation was ~5000 km. Observed velocities were calculated from multi-spacecraft timing analysis, and compared with the velocities predicted by the Cooling model in order to check the validity of the model. After excluding three categories of FTEs (events with poorly defined velocities, a significant velocity component out of the magnetopause surface, or a scale size of less than 5000 km, we were left with a sample of 118 events. 78% of these events were consistent in both direction of motion and speed with one of the two model de Hoffmann-Teller (dHT velocities calculated from the Cooling model (to within 30° and a factor of two in the speed. We also examined the plasma signatures of several magnetosheath FTEs; the electron signatures confirm the hemisphere of connection indicated by the model in most cases. This indicates that although the model is a simple one, it is a useful tool for identifying the source regions of FTEs.

  3. Foreign gene transfer into Chinese shrimps (Penaeus chinensis) with gene gun

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    Plasmids pG DNA-RZ1 with a GFP (green fluorescent protein) reporter gene and a ribozyme gene incising penaeid white spot baculovirus (WSBV) were first introduced into the fertilized eggs of Chinese shrimps by gene gun. The treated and control samples of different development stages were observed with a fluorescent microscope. The transient expression of GFP gene was high in nauplius and zoea larvae. Results from RT-PCR and PCR for adults showed that the foreign genes had been transferred into the shrimps and had expressed the corresponding proteins. This work has established a transgenic method for penaeid shrimps, which will set base for the application of genetic engineering breeding into industry.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katyshev A.I.


    Full Text Available Earlier, we had showed that isolated mitochondria from different organisms can import DNA. Exploiting this mechanism, we assessed the possibility of genes transfer in tobacco mitochondria in vitro and in vivo. Whereas homologous recombination is a rare occasion in higher plant nuclei, recombination between the large direct repeats in plant mitochondrial genome generates its multipartite structure. Following transfection of isolated organelles with constructs composed of a partial gfp gene flanked by mitochondrial DNA fragments, we showed the homologous recombination of imported DNA with the resident DNA and the integration of the reporter gene. The recombination yielded an insertion of a continuous exogenous DNA fragment including the gfp sequence and at least the 0.5 kb of the flanking sequence on each side. Using of transfection constructs carrying multiple sequences homologous to mitochondrial DNA could be suitable for insertion of a target gene into any region of the mitochondrial genome, which turns this approach to be of a general and methodical importance. Usually mitochondrial reactive oxygen species (ROS level is under strict control of the antioxidant system including the Mn-containing superoxide dismutase (MnSOD. MnSOD is presented in multiple forms encoded by several genes in plants. Possibly, this enzyme, beside its catalytic function, fulfills as well some unknown biochemical functions. Thus, one of maize SOD enzymes (SOD3.4 could bind with mitochondrial DNA. Another SOD form (SOD3.1 is located in close proximity to mitochondrial respiratory complexes, where ROS are generated. To study possible physiological functions of this enzyme, we cloned the maize SOD3.1 gene. Compared to the SOD3.4, this enzyme didn't demonstrate DNA-binding activity. At the same time, SOD3.1 didn't show non-specific DNA-hydrolyzing activity as Cu/ZnSOD does. It means that this enzyme might have some DNA protective function. We made NtPcob-sod3.1-IGR

  5. Safety and efficacy of gene transfer for Leber's congenital amaurosis. (United States)

    Maguire, Albert M; Simonelli, Francesca; Pierce, Eric A; Pugh, Edward N; Mingozzi, Federico; Bennicelli, Jeannette; Banfi, Sandro; Marshall, Kathleen A; Testa, Francesco; Surace, Enrico M; Rossi, Settimio; Lyubarsky, Arkady; Arruda, Valder R; Konkle, Barbara; Stone, Edwin; Sun, Junwei; Jacobs, Jonathan; Dell'Osso, Lou; Hertle, Richard; Ma, Jian-xing; Redmond, T Michael; Zhu, Xiaosong; Hauck, Bernd; Zelenaia, Olga; Shindler, Kenneth S; Maguire, Maureen G; Wright, J Fraser; Volpe, Nicholas J; McDonnell, Jennifer Wellman; Auricchio, Alberto; High, Katherine A; Bennett, Jean


    Leber's congenital amaurosis (LCA) is a group of inherited blinding diseases with onset during childhood. One form of the disease, LCA2, is caused by mutations in the retinal pigment epithelium-specific 65-kDa protein gene (RPE65). We investigated the safety of subretinal delivery of a recombinant adeno-associated virus (AAV) carrying RPE65 complementary DNA (cDNA) ( number, NCT00516477 []). Three patients with LCA2 had an acceptable local and systemic adverse-event profile after delivery of AAV2.hRPE65v2. Each patient had a modest improvement in measures of retinal function on subjective tests of visual acuity. In one patient, an asymptomatic macular hole developed, and although the occurrence was considered to be an adverse event, the patient had some return of retinal function. Although the follow-up was very short and normal vision was not achieved, this study provides the basis for further gene therapy studies in patients with LCA. Copyright 2008 Massachusetts Medical Society.

  6. CEP290 gene transfer rescues Leber congenital amaurosis cellular phenotype. (United States)

    Burnight, E R; Wiley, L A; Drack, A V; Braun, T A; Anfinson, K R; Kaalberg, E E; Halder, J A; Affatigato, L M; Mullins, R F; Stone, E M; Tucker, B A


    Mutations in CEP290 are the most common cause of Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA), a severe inherited retinal degenerative disease for which there is currently no cure. Autosomal recessive CEP290-associated LCA is a good candidate for gene replacement therapy, and cells derived from affected individuals give researchers the ability to study human disease and therapeutic gene correction in vitro. Here we report the development of lentiviral vectors carrying full-length CEP290 for the purpose of correcting the CEP290 disease-specific phenotype in human cells. A lentiviral vector containing CMV-driven human full-length CEP290 was constructed. Following transduction of patient-specific, iPSC-derived, photoreceptor precursor cells, reverse transcriptase-PCR analysis and western blotting revealed vector-derived expression. As CEP290 is important in ciliogenesis, the ability of fibroblast cultures from CEP290-associated LCA patients to form cilia was investigated. In cultures derived from these patients, fewer cells formed cilia compared with unaffected controls. Cilia that were formed were shorter in patient-derived cells than in cells from unaffected individuals. Importantly, lentiviral delivery of CEP290 rescued the ciliogenesis defect. The successful construction and viral transfer of full-length CEP290 brings us closer to the goal of providing gene- and cell-based therapies for patients affected with this common form of LCA.

  7. Adenovirus gene transfer to amelogenesis imperfecta ameloblast-like cells.

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    Anton V Borovjagin

    Full Text Available To explore gene therapy strategies for amelogenesis imperfecta (AI, a human ameloblast-like cell population was established from third molars of an AI-affected patient. These cells were characterized by expression of cytokeratin 14, major enamel proteins and alkaline phosphatase staining. Suboptimal transduction of the ameloblast-like cells by an adenovirus type 5 (Ad5 vector was consistent with lower levels of the coxsackie-and-adenovirus receptor (CAR on those cells relative to CAR-positive A549 cells. To overcome CAR -deficiency, we evaluated capsid-modified Ad5 vectors with various genetic capsid modifications including "pK7" and/or "RGD" motif-containing short peptides incorporated in the capsid protein fiber as well as fiber chimera with the Ad serotype 3 (Ad3 fiber "knob" domain. All fiber modifications provided an augmented transduction of AI-ameloblasts, revealed following vector dose normalization in A549 cells with a superior effect (up to 404-fold of pK7/RGD double modification. This robust infectivity enhancement occurred through vector binding to both α(vβ3/α(vβ5 integrins and heparan sulfate proteoglycans (HSPGs highly expressed by AI-ameloblasts as revealed by gene transfer blocking experiments. This work thus not only pioneers establishment of human AI ameloblast-like cell population as a model for in vitro studies but also reveals an optimal infectivity-enhancement strategy for a potential Ad5 vector-mediated gene therapy for AI.

  8. Novel "Superspreader" Bacteriophages Promote Horizontal Gene Transfer by Transformation. (United States)

    Keen, Eric C; Bliskovsky, Valery V; Malagon, Francisco; Baker, James D; Prince, Jeffrey S; Klaus, James S; Adhya, Sankar L


    Bacteriophages infect an estimated 10(23) to 10(25) bacterial cells each second, many of which carry physiologically relevant plasmids (e.g., those encoding antibiotic resistance). However, even though phage-plasmid interactions occur on a massive scale and have potentially significant evolutionary, ecological, and biomedical implications, plasmid fate upon phage infection and lysis has not been investigated to date. Here we show that a subset of the natural lytic phage population, which we dub "superspreaders," releases substantial amounts of intact, transformable plasmid DNA upon lysis, thereby promoting horizontal gene transfer by transformation. Two novel Escherichia coli phage superspreaders, SUSP1 and SUSP2, liberated four evolutionarily distinct plasmids with equal efficiency, including two close relatives of prominent antibiotic resistance vectors in natural environments. SUSP2 also mediated the extensive lateral transfer of antibiotic resistance in unbiased communities of soil bacteria from Maryland and Wyoming. Furthermore, the addition of SUSP2 to cocultures of kanamycin-resistant E. coli and kanamycin-sensitive Bacillus sp. bacteria resulted in roughly 1,000-fold more kanamycin-resistant Bacillus sp. bacteria than arose in phage-free controls. Unlike many other lytic phages, neither SUSP1 nor SUSP2 encodes homologs to known hydrolytic endonucleases, suggesting a simple potential mechanism underlying the superspreading phenotype. Consistent with this model, the deletion of endonuclease IV and the nucleoid-disrupting protein ndd from coliphage T4, a phage known to extensively degrade chromosomal DNA, significantly increased its ability to promote plasmid transformation. Taken together, our results suggest that phage superspreaders may play key roles in microbial evolution and ecology but should be avoided in phage therapy and other medical applications. Bacteriophages (phages), viruses that infect bacteria, are the planet's most numerous biological

  9. Updated clusters of orthologous genes for Archaea: a complex ancestor of the Archaea and the byways of horizontal gene transfer

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    Wolf Yuri I


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Collections of Clusters of Orthologous Genes (COGs provide indispensable tools for comparative genomic analysis, evolutionary reconstruction and functional annotation of new genomes. Initially, COGs were made for all complete genomes of cellular life forms that were available at the time. However, with the accumulation of thousands of complete genomes, construction of a comprehensive COG set has become extremely computationally demanding and prone to error propagation, necessitating the switch to taxon-specific COG collections. Previously, we reported the collection of COGs for 41 genomes of Archaea (arCOGs. Here we present a major update of the arCOGs and describe evolutionary reconstructions to reveal general trends in the evolution of Archaea. Results The updated version of the arCOG database incorporates 91% of the pangenome of 120 archaea (251,032 protein-coding genes altogether into 10,335 arCOGs. Using this new set of arCOGs, we performed maximum likelihood reconstruction of the genome content of archaeal ancestral forms and gene gain and loss events in archaeal evolution. This reconstruction shows that the last Common Ancestor of the extant Archaea was an organism of greater complexity than most of the extant archaea, probably with over 2,500 protein-coding genes. The subsequent evolution of almost all archaeal lineages was apparently dominated by gene loss resulting in genome streamlining. Overall, in the evolution of Archaea as well as a representative set of bacteria that was similarly analyzed for comparison, gene losses are estimated to outnumber gene gains at least 4 to 1. Analysis of specific patterns of gene gain in Archaea shows that, although some groups, in particular Halobacteria, acquire substantially more genes than others, on the whole, gene exchange between major groups of Archaea appears to be largely random, with no major ‘highways’ of horizontal gene transfer. Conclusions The updated collection

  10. Recent Origin of the Methacrylate Redox System in Geobacter sulfurreducens AM-1 through Horizontal Gene Transfer. (United States)

    Arkhipova, Oksana V; Meer, Margarita V; Mikoulinskaia, Galina V; Zakharova, Marina V; Galushko, Alexander S; Akimenko, Vasilii K; Kondrashov, Fyodor A


    The origin and evolution of novel biochemical functions remains one of the key questions in molecular evolution. We study recently emerged methacrylate reductase function that is thought to have emerged in the last century and reported in Geobacter sulfurreducens strain AM-1. We report the sequence and study the evolution of the operon coding for the flavin-containing methacrylate reductase (Mrd) and tetraheme cytochrome с (Mcc) in the genome of G. sulfurreducens AM-1. Different types of signal peptides in functionally interlinked proteins Mrd and Mcc suggest a possible complex mechanism of biogenesis for chromoproteids of the methacrylate redox system. The homologs of the Mrd and Mcc sequence found in δ-Proteobacteria and Deferribacteres are also organized into an operon and their phylogenetic distribution suggested that these two genes tend to be horizontally transferred together. Specifically, the mrd and mcc genes from G. sulfurreducens AM-1 are not monophyletic with any of the homologs found in other Geobacter genomes. The acquisition of methacrylate reductase function by G. sulfurreducens AM-1 appears linked to a horizontal gene transfer event. However, the new function of the products of mrd and mcc may have evolved either prior or subsequent to their acquisition by G. sulfurreducens AM-1.

  11. Recent Origin of the Methacrylate Redox System in Geobacter sulfurreducens AM-1 through Horizontal Gene Transfer.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oksana V Arkhipova

    Full Text Available The origin and evolution of novel biochemical functions remains one of the key questions in molecular evolution. We study recently emerged methacrylate reductase function that is thought to have emerged in the last century and reported in Geobacter sulfurreducens strain AM-1. We report the sequence and study the evolution of the operon coding for the flavin-containing methacrylate reductase (Mrd and tetraheme cytochrome с (Mcc in the genome of G. sulfurreducens AM-1. Different types of signal peptides in functionally interlinked proteins Mrd and Mcc suggest a possible complex mechanism of biogenesis for chromoproteids of the methacrylate redox system. The homologs of the Mrd and Mcc sequence found in δ-Proteobacteria and Deferribacteres are also organized into an operon and their phylogenetic distribution suggested that these two genes tend to be horizontally transferred together. Specifically, the mrd and mcc genes from G. sulfurreducens AM-1 are not monophyletic with any of the homologs found in other Geobacter genomes. The acquisition of methacrylate reductase function by G. sulfurreducens AM-1 appears linked to a horizontal gene transfer event. However, the new function of the products of mrd and mcc may have evolved either prior or subsequent to their acquisition by G. sulfurreducens AM-1.

  12. A horizontal gene transfer supported the evolution of an early metazoan biomineralization strategy

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    Wörheide Gert


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The synchronous and widespread adoption of the ability to biomineralize was a defining event for metazoan evolution during the late Precambrian/early Cambrian 545 million years ago. However our understanding on the molecular level of how animals first evolved this capacity is poor. Because sponges are the earliest branching phylum of biomineralizing metazoans, we have been studying how biocalcification occurs in the coralline demosponge Astrosclera willeyana. Results We have isolated and characterized a novel protein directly from the calcified spherulites of A. willeyana. Using three independent lines of evidence (genomic architecture of the gene in A. willeyana, spatial expression of the gene product in A. willeyana and genomic architecture of the gene in the related demosponge Amphimedon queenslandica, we show that the gene that encodes this protein was horizontally acquired from a bacterium, and is now highly and exclusively expressed in spherulite forming cells. Conclusions Our findings highlight the ancient and close association that exists between sponges and bacteria, and provide support for the notion that horizontal gene transfer may have been an important mechanism that supported the evolution of this early metazoan biomineralisation strategy.

  13. No evidence for extensive horizontal gene transfer in the genome of the tardigrade Hypsibius dujardini. (United States)

    Koutsovoulos, Georgios; Kumar, Sujai; Laetsch, Dominik R; Stevens, Lewis; Daub, Jennifer; Conlon, Claire; Maroon, Habib; Thomas, Fran; Aboobaker, Aziz A; Blaxter, Mark


    Tardigrades are meiofaunal ecdysozoans that are key to understanding the origins of Arthropoda. Many species of Tardigrada can survive extreme conditions through cryptobiosis. In a recent paper [Boothby TC, et al. (2015) Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 112(52):15976-15981], the authors concluded that the tardigrade Hypsibius dujardini had an unprecedented proportion (17%) of genes originating through functional horizontal gene transfer (fHGT) and speculated that fHGT was likely formative in the evolution of cryptobiosis. We independently sequenced the genome of H. dujardini As expected from whole-organism DNA sampling, our raw data contained reads from nontarget genomes. Filtering using metagenomics approaches generated a draft H. dujardini genome assembly of 135 Mb with superior assembly metrics to the previously published assembly. Additional microbial contamination likely remains. We found no support for extensive fHGT. Among 23,021 gene predictions we identified 0.2% strong candidates for fHGT from bacteria and 0.2% strong candidates for fHGT from nonmetazoan eukaryotes. Cross-comparison of assemblies showed that the overwhelming majority of HGT candidates in the Boothby et al. genome derived from contaminants. We conclude that fHGT into H. dujardini accounts for at most 1-2% of genes and that the proposal that one-sixth of tardigrade genes originate from functional HGT events is an artifact of undetected contamination.


    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    管珩; 李拥军; 郑曰宏; 刘昌伟; 杨菁; 宋存先; 王彭延; 赵三妹; 王宗立; 佘铭鹏


    Objective. To evaluate the possibility and efficiency of nanoparticle as a new vector in specific gene transference.Methods. Nanoparticle-DNA complex was prepared with Poly- dl-lactic-co-glycolic acid (PLGA) beating antisense monocyte chemotactic protein-1 (A-MCP-1), a specific expression gene, and the package efficiency, release progress in vitro, and the size of the complex were determined. The possibility of the new vector was evaluated with genomic DNA PCR by transferring gene into cultured smooth muscle cells (SMC), cationic lipids as a control. For study in vivo, jugular vein-to-artery bypass grafting procedures were performed on 20 New Zealand white rabbits, of which 6 grafts were transferred with nanoparticle-A-MCP-1 (200 μg), 6 with A - MCP - 1(200 μ g) by cationic liposome, 4 with LNCX plasmid, and 4 as control. Fourteen days after the grafts were harvested, the expression of A-MCP-1 and its effect on MCP-1 in vein grafts were detected by dot blot, and the morphologic evaluation of grafts was performed.Results. The package efficiency of the nanoparticle-DNA complex was 0. 9%, release progress in vitro lasted 2 weeks, and the size ranged from 150 to 300nm. SMC genomic DNA PCR showed that A-MCP-1 gene could be successfully transfected into cells by nanoparticle. The study in vivo indicated that A-MCP-1 mRNA was expressed in both local gene delivery groups, nanoparticle and liposome, meanwhile, MCP-1 expression in vein grafts was significantly inhibited and neointimal hyperplasia was notably reduced.Conclusion. Nanoparticle can act as a vector to transfect specific gene.

  15. Multiple horizontal transfers of nuclear ribosomal genes between phylogenetically distinct grass lineages (United States)

    Mahelka, Václav; Krak, Karol; Kopecký, David; Fehrer, Judith; Šafář, Jan; Bartoš, Jan; Hobza, Roman; Blavet, Nicolas; Blattner, Frank R.


    The movement of nuclear DNA from one vascular plant species to another in the absence of fertilization is thought to be rare. Here, nonnative rRNA gene [ribosomal DNA (rDNA)] copies were identified in a set of 16 diploid barley (Hordeum) species; their origin was traceable via their internal transcribed spacer (ITS) sequence to five distinct Panicoideae genera, a lineage that split from the Pooideae about 60 Mya. Phylogenetic, cytogenetic, and genomic analyses implied that the nonnative sequences were acquired between 1 and 5 Mya after a series of multiple events, with the result that some current Hordeum sp. individuals harbor up to five different panicoid rDNA units in addition to the native Hordeum rDNA copies. There was no evidence that any of the nonnative rDNA units were transcribed; some showed indications of having been silenced via pseudogenization. A single copy of a Panicum sp. rDNA unit present in H. bogdanii had been interrupted by a native transposable element and was surrounded by about 70 kbp of mostly noncoding sequence of panicoid origin. The data suggest that horizontal gene transfer between vascular plants is not a rare event, that it is not necessarily restricted to one or a few genes only, and that it can be selectively neutral. PMID:28137844

  16. Isolated limb perfusion for local gene delivery: efficient and targeted adenovirus-mediated gene transfer into soft tissue sarcomas

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    W.K. de Roos; J.H.W. de Wilt (Johannes); M.E. van der Kaaden; E.R. Manusama (Eric); M.W. de Vries; A. Bout; T.L.M. ten Hagen (Timo); D. Valerio (Dinko); A.M.M. Eggermont (Alexander)


    textabstractOBJECTIVE: To evaluate the potential of isolated limb perfusion (ILP) for efficient and tumor-specific adenovirus-mediated gene transfer in sarcoma-bearing rats. SUMMARY BACKGROUND DATA: A major concern in adenovirus-mediated gene therapy in cancer is the transfer of ge

  17. Differential integrity of TALE nuclease genes following adenoviral and lentiviral vector gene transfer into human cells. (United States)

    Holkers, Maarten; Maggio, Ignazio; Liu, Jin; Janssen, Josephine M; Miselli, Francesca; Mussolino, Claudio; Recchia, Alessandra; Cathomen, Toni; Gonçalves, Manuel A F V


    The array of genome editing strategies based on targeted double-stranded DNA break formation have recently been enriched through the introduction of transcription activator-like type III effector (TALE) nucleases (TALENs). To advance the testing of TALE-based approaches, it will be crucial to deliver these custom-designed proteins not only into transformed cell types but also into more relevant, chromosomally stable, primary cells. Viral vectors are among the most effective gene transfer vehicles. Here, we investigated the capacity of human immunodeficiency virus type 1- and adenovirus-based vectors to package and deliver functional TALEN genes into various human cell types. To this end, we attempted to assemble particles of these two vector classes, each encoding a monomer of a TALEN pair targeted to a bipartite sequence within the AAVS1 'safe harbor' locus. Vector DNA analyses revealed that adenoviral vectors transferred intact TALEN genes, whereas lentiviral vectors failed to do so, as shown by their heterogeneously sized proviruses in target cells. Importantly, adenoviral vector-mediated TALEN gene delivery resulted in site-specific double-stranded DNA break formation at the intended AAVS1 target site at similarly high levels in both transformed and non-transformed cells. In conclusion, we demonstrate that adenoviral, but not lentiviral, vectors constitute a valuable TALEN gene delivery platform.

  18. Differential integrity of TALE nuclease genes following adenoviral and lentiviral vector gene transfer into human cells


    Holkers, M.; Maggio, I.; Liu, J.; Janssen, J.M.; Miselli, F; Mussolino, C.; Recchia, A; Cathomen, T.; Goncalves, M. A. F. V.


    The array of genome editing strategies based on targeted double-stranded DNA break formation have recently been enriched through the introduction of transcription activator-like type III effector (TALE) nucleases (TALENs). To advance the testing of TALE-based approaches, it will be crucial to deliver these custom-designed proteins not only into transformed cell types but also into more relevant, chromosomally stable, primary cells. Viral vectors are among the most effective gene transfer vehi...

  19. Early events in the evolution of spider silk genes.

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    James Starrett

    Full Text Available Silk spinning is essential to spider ecology and has had a key role in the expansive diversification of spiders. Silk is composed primarily of proteins called spidroins, which are encoded by a multi-gene family. Spidroins have been studied extensively in the derived clade, Orbiculariae (orb-weavers, from the suborder Araneomorphae ('true spiders'. Orbicularians produce a suite of different silks, and underlying this repertoire is a history of duplication and spidroin gene divergence. A second class of silk proteins, Egg Case Proteins (ECPs, is known only from the orbicularian species, Lactrodectus hesperus (Western black widow. In L. hesperus, ECPs bond with tubuliform spidroins to form egg case silk fibers. Because most of the phylogenetic diversity of spiders has not been sampled for their silk genes, there is limited understanding of spidroin gene family history and the prevalence of ECPs. Silk genes have not been reported from the suborder Mesothelae (segmented spiders, which diverged from all other spiders >380 million years ago, and sampling from Mygalomorphae (tarantulas, trapdoor spiders and basal araneomorph lineages is sparse. In comparison to orbicularians, mesotheles and mygalomorphs have a simpler silk biology and thus are hypothesized to have less diversity of silk genes. Here, we present cDNAs synthesized from the silk glands of six mygalomorph species, a mesothele, and a non-orbicularian araneomorph, and uncover a surprisingly rich silk gene diversity. In particular, we find ECP homologs in the mesothele, suggesting that ECPs were present in the common ancestor of extant spiders, and originally were not specialized to complex with tubuliform spidroins. Furthermore, gene-tree/species-tree reconciliation analysis reveals that numerous spidroin gene duplications occurred after the split between Mesothelae and Opisthothelae (Mygalomorphae plus Araneomorphae. We use the spidroin gene tree to reconstruct the evolution of amino acid

  20. Early events in the evolution of spider silk genes. (United States)

    Starrett, James; Garb, Jessica E; Kuelbs, Amanda; Azubuike, Ugochi O; Hayashi, Cheryl Y


    Silk spinning is essential to spider ecology and has had a key role in the expansive diversification of spiders. Silk is composed primarily of proteins called spidroins, which are encoded by a multi-gene family. Spidroins have been studied extensively in the derived clade, Orbiculariae (orb-weavers), from the suborder Araneomorphae ('true spiders'). Orbicularians produce a suite of different silks, and underlying this repertoire is a history of duplication and spidroin gene divergence. A second class of silk proteins, Egg Case Proteins (ECPs), is known only from the orbicularian species, Lactrodectus hesperus (Western black widow). In L. hesperus, ECPs bond with tubuliform spidroins to form egg case silk fibers. Because most of the phylogenetic diversity of spiders has not been sampled for their silk genes, there is limited understanding of spidroin gene family history and the prevalence of ECPs. Silk genes have not been reported from the suborder Mesothelae (segmented spiders), which diverged from all other spiders >380 million years ago, and sampling from Mygalomorphae (tarantulas, trapdoor spiders) and basal araneomorph lineages is sparse. In comparison to orbicularians, mesotheles and mygalomorphs have a simpler silk biology and thus are hypothesized to have less diversity of silk genes. Here, we present cDNAs synthesized from the silk glands of six mygalomorph species, a mesothele, and a non-orbicularian araneomorph, and uncover a surprisingly rich silk gene diversity. In particular, we find ECP homologs in the mesothele, suggesting that ECPs were present in the common ancestor of extant spiders, and originally were not specialized to complex with tubuliform spidroins. Furthermore, gene-tree/species-tree reconciliation analysis reveals that numerous spidroin gene duplications occurred after the split between Mesothelae and Opisthothelae (Mygalomorphae plus Araneomorphae). We use the spidroin gene tree to reconstruct the evolution of amino acid compositions of

  1. Association between genes, stressful childhood events and processing bias in depression vulnerable individuals

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vrijsen, J.N.; Oostrom, I.I.H. van; Arias-Vasquez, A.; Franke, B.; Becker, E.S.; Speckens, A.E.M.


    The brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) genes are relevant candidates for depression. Variation in these genes is associated with stress sensitivity and depressotypic cognitive biases. The interaction between genes and stressful events is considered as an

  2. Association between genes, stressful childhood events and processing bias in depression vulnerable individuals

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vrijsen, J.N.; Oostrom, I.I.H. van; Arias-Vasquez, A.; Franke, B.; Becker, E.S.; Speckens, A.E.M.


    The brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) genes are relevant candidates for depression. Variation in these genes is associated with stress sensitivity and depressotypic cognitive biases. The interaction between genes and stressful events is considered as an

  3. Passive Immunization against HIV/AIDS by Antibody Gene Transfer

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    Lili Yang


    Full Text Available Despite tremendous efforts over the course of many years, the quest for an effective HIV vaccine by the classical method of active immunization remains largely elusive. However, two recent studies in mice and macaques have now demonstrated a new strategy designated as Vectored ImmunoProphylaxis (VIP, which involves passive immunization by viral vector-mediated delivery of genes encoding broadly neutralizing antibodies (bnAbs for in vivo expression. Robust protection against virus infection was observed in preclinical settings when animals were given VIP to express monoclonal neutralizing antibodies. This unorthodox approach raises new promise for combating the ongoing global HIV pandemic. In this article, we survey the status of antibody gene transfer, review the revolutionary progress on isolation of extremely bnAbs, detail VIP experiments against HIV and its related virus conduced in humanized mice and macaque monkeys, and discuss the pros and cons of VIP and its opportunities and challenges towards clinical applications to control HIV/AIDS endemics.

  4. Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) as a mechanism of disseminating RDX-degrading activity among Actinomycete bacteria. (United States)

    Jung, C M; Crocker, F H; Eberly, J O; Indest, K J


    Hexahydro-1,3,5-trinitro-1,3,5,-triazine (RDX) is a cyclic nitramine explosive that is a major component in many high-explosive formulations and has been found as a contaminant of soil and groundwater. The RDX-degrading gene locus xplAB, located on pGKT2 in Gordonia sp. KTR9, is highly conserved among isolates from disparate geographical locations suggesting a horizontal gene transfer (HGT) event. It was our goal to determine whether Gordonia sp. KTR9 is capable of transferring pGKT2 and the associated RDX degradation ability to other bacteria. We demonstrate the successful conjugal transfer of pGKT2 from Gordonia sp. KTR9 to Gordonia polyisoprenivorans, Rhodococcus jostii RHA1 and Nocardia sp. TW2. Through growth and RDX degradation studies, it was demonstrated that pGKT2 conferred to transconjugants the ability to degrade and utilize RDX as a nitrogen source. The inhibitory effect of exogenous inorganic nitrogen sources on RDX degradation in transconjugant strains was found to be strain specific. Plasmid pGKT2 can be transferred by conjugation, along with the ability to degrade RDX, to related bacteria, providing evidence of at least one mechanism for the dissemination and persistence of xplAB in the environment. These results provide evidence of one mechanism for the environmental dissemination of xplAB and provide a framework for future field relevant bioremediation practices. Journal of Applied Microbiology © 2011 The Society for Applied Microbiology. No claim to US Government works.

  5. Evaluation of biolistic gene transfer methods in vivo using non-invasive bioluminescent imaging techniques

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    Daniell Henry


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Gene therapy continues to hold great potential for treating many different types of disease and dysfunction. Safe and efficient techniques for gene transfer and expression in vivo are needed to enable gene therapeutic strategies to be effective in patients. Currently, the most commonly used methods employ replication-defective viral vectors for gene transfer, while physical gene transfer methods such as biolistic-mediated ("gene-gun" delivery to target tissues have not been as extensively explored. In the present study, we evaluated the efficacy of biolistic gene transfer techniques in vivo using non-invasive bioluminescent imaging (BLI methods. Results Plasmid DNA carrying the firefly luciferase (LUC reporter gene under the control of the human Cytomegalovirus (CMV promoter/enhancer was transfected into mouse skin and liver using biolistic methods. The plasmids were coupled to gold microspheres (1 μm diameter using different DNA Loading Ratios (DLRs, and "shot" into target tissues using a helium-driven gene gun. The optimal DLR was found to be in the range of 4-10. Bioluminescence was measured using an In Vivo Imaging System (IVIS-50 at various time-points following transfer. Biolistic gene transfer to mouse skin produced peak reporter gene expression one day after transfer. Expression remained detectable through four days, but declined to undetectable levels by six days following gene transfer. Maximum depth of tissue penetration following biolistic transfer to abdominal skin was 200-300 μm. Similarly, biolistic gene transfer to mouse liver in vivo also produced peak early expression followed by a decline over time. In contrast to skin, however, liver expression of the reporter gene was relatively stable 4-8 days post-biolistic gene transfer, and remained detectable for nearly two weeks. Conclusions The use of bioluminescence imaging techniques enabled efficient evaluation of reporter gene expression in vivo. Our results

  6. Center for fetal monkey gene transfer for heart, lung, and blood diseases: an NHLBI resource for the gene therapy community. (United States)

    Tarantal, Alice F; Skarlatos, Sonia I


    The goals of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) Center for Fetal Monkey Gene Transfer for Heart, Lung, and Blood Diseases are to conduct gene transfer studies in monkeys to evaluate safety and efficiency; and to provide NHLBI-supported investigators with expertise, resources, and services to actively pursue gene transfer approaches in monkeys in their research programs. NHLBI-supported projects span investigators throughout the United States and have addressed novel approaches to gene delivery; "proof-of-principle"; assessed whether findings in small-animal models could be demonstrated in a primate species; or were conducted to enable new grant or IND submissions. The Center for Fetal Monkey Gene Transfer for Heart, Lung, and Blood Diseases successfully aids the gene therapy community in addressing regulatory barriers, and serves as an effective vehicle for advancing the field.

  7. The substructure of a flux transfer event observed by the MMS spacecraft (United States)

    Hwang, K.-J.; Sibeck, D. G.; Giles, B. L.; Pollock, C. J.; Gershman, D.; Avanov, L.; Paterson, W. R.; Dorelli, J. C.; Ergun, R. E.; Russell, C. T.; Strangeway, R. J.; Mauk, B.; Cohen, I. J.; Torbert, R. B.; Burch, J. L.


    On 15 August 2015, MMS (Magnetospheric Multiscale mission), skimming the dusk magnetopause, detected an isolated region of an increased magnetic strength and bipolar Bn, indicating a flux transfer event (FTE). The four spacecraft in a tetrahedron allowed for investigations of the shape and motion of the FTE. In particular, high-resolution particle data facilitated our exploration of FTE substructures and their magnetic connectivity inside and surrounding the FTE. Combined field and plasma observations suggest that the core fields are open, magnetically connected to the northern magnetosphere from which high-energy particles leak; ion "D" distributions characterize the axis of flux ropes that carry old-opened field lines; counterstreaming electrons superposed by parallel-heated components populate the periphery surrounding the FTE; and the interface between the core and draped regions contains a separatrix of newly opened magnetic field lines that emanate from the X line above the FTE.

  8. Transient hypermutagenesis accelerates the evolution of legume endosymbionts following horizontal gene transfer.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philippe Remigi


    Full Text Available Horizontal gene transfer (HGT is an important mode of adaptation and diversification of prokaryotes and eukaryotes and a major event underlying the emergence of bacterial pathogens and mutualists. Yet it remains unclear how complex phenotypic traits such as the ability to fix nitrogen with legumes have successfully spread over large phylogenetic distances. Here we show, using experimental evolution coupled with whole genome sequencing, that co-transfer of imuABC error-prone DNA polymerase genes with key symbiotic genes accelerates the evolution of a soil bacterium into a legume symbiont. Following introduction of the symbiotic plasmid of Cupriavidus taiwanensis, the Mimosa symbiont, into pathogenic Ralstonia solanacearum we challenged transconjugants to become Mimosa symbionts through serial plant-bacteria co-cultures. We demonstrate that a mutagenesis imuABC cassette encoded on the C. taiwanensis symbiotic plasmid triggered a transient hypermutability stage in R. solanacearum transconjugants that occurred before the cells entered the plant. The generated burst in genetic diversity accelerated symbiotic adaptation of the recipient genome under plant selection pressure, presumably by improving the exploration of the fitness landscape. Finally, we show that plasmid imuABC cassettes are over-represented in rhizobial lineages harboring symbiotic plasmids. Our findings shed light on a mechanism that may have facilitated the dissemination of symbiotic competency among α- and β-proteobacteria in natura and provide evidence for the positive role of environment-induced mutagenesis in the acquisition of a complex lifestyle trait. We speculate that co-transfer of complex phenotypic traits with mutagenesis determinants might frequently enhance the ecological success of HGT.

  9. Transferability of Training Benefits Differs across Neural Events: Evidence from ERPs. (United States)

    Garner, Kelly G; Matthews, Natasha; Remington, Roger W; Dux, Paul E


    Humans can show striking capacity limitations in sensorimotor processing. Fortunately, these limitations can be attenuated with training. However, less fortunately, training benefits often remain limited to trained tasks. Recent behavioral observations suggest that the extent to which training transfers may depend on the specific stage of information processing that is being executed. Training benefits for a task that taps the consolidation of sensory information (sensory encoding) transfer to new stimulus-response mappings, whereas benefits for selecting an appropriate action (decision-making/response selection) remain specific to the trained mappings. Therefore, training may have dissociable influences on the neural events underlying subsequent sensorimotor processing stages. Here, we used EEG to investigate this possibility. In a pretraining baseline session, participants completed two four-alternative-choice response time tasks, presented both as a single task and as part of a dual task (with another task). The training group completed a further 3,000 training trials on one of the four-alternative-choice tasks. Hence, one task became trained, whereas the other remained untrained. At test, a negative-going component that is sensitive to sensory-encoding demands (N2) showed increased amplitudes and reduced latencies for trained and untrained mappings relative to a no-train control group. In contrast, the onset of the stimulus-locked lateralized readiness potential, a component that reflects the activation of motor plans, was reduced only for tasks that employed trained stimulus-response mappings, relative to untrained stimulus-response mappings and controls. Collectively, these results show that training benefits are dissociable for the brain events that reflect distinct sensorimotor processing stages.

  10. Elements of style: consent form language and the therapeutic misconception in phase 1 gene transfer trials. (United States)

    Kimmelman, Jonathan; Levenstadt, Aaron


    The therapeutic misconception arises wherever human subjects misinterpret the primary purpose of a clinical trial as therapeutic. Such misconceptions are particularly prevalent in trials involving severely ill subjects or novel and well-publicized investigational agents. In order to identify possible sources of the therapeutic misconception in gene transfer trials, 286 phase 1 human gene transfer consent documents were analyzed for their description of purpose, alternatives, and their use of the term gene transfer. We report that 20% of trials fail to explain their purpose as safety and dosage, only 41% of oncology trials identify comfort care as an alternative to participation, and that the term gene therapy is used with twice the frequency of the term gene transfer. Trends and coherence in consent form language were analyzed as well. Our results indicate that consent forms used in gene transfer phase 1 trials often contain language that promotes, or does little to deter, therapeutic misconceptions.

  11. The simulation of a MCS event in the South America using a radiative transfer model (United States)

    Silveira, B. B.; Aravéquia, J. A.


    The Mesoescale Convective Systems (MCS) have an important role in the total precipitation in some regions in the world. The Southeast of South America is one of these regions, because in this area the environment favors the development of MCS. The satellite image is an important data used in the identification and characterization of these systems. In these images the MCSs are characterize for have a low values of Brightness Temperature (BT). A channel utilized to identify these systems is 4 (infrared) of the sensor imager of GOES 10 satellite. With the objective of identify a MCS with an atmospheric model 12h forecast was realized a simulation of BT to channel 4 of GOES 10 using a radiative transfer model. The MCS event chosen was one that occur between 9 and 10 November 2008 and this system reached the North of Argentine and Paraguay. This MCS was identified using the outputs of FORTACC (Forecast and Tracking of Active Convective Cells). The BT simulation was realized using the radiative transfer model CRTM version 2.0.2 (Community Radiative Transfer Model) from JCSDA (Joint Center for Satellite Data Assimilation). To realize the simulation was used a 12 hours forecast from ETA model, this atmospheric model is an operational model from the CPTEC/INPE (Centro de Previsão de Tempo e Estudos Climáticos/ Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Epaciais). The ETA model has 20x20 Km horizontal spatial resolution and 19 levels in the vertical. The simulation of BT values with CRTM indicates the region where the MCS occurred. However the BT values are overestimated by the CRTM, the simulated amounts are quantitatively higher than the observed by the channel 4 from GOES 10. The area with BT values related to the MCS is smaller than the observed in the satellite image, the system shape also wasn't simulated the satisfactory way.

  12. Mammalian BEX, WEX and GASP genes: Coding and non-coding chimaerism sustained by gene conversion events

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ponting Chris P


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The identification of sequence innovations in the genomes of mammals facilitates understanding of human gene function, as well as sheds light on the molecular mechanisms which underlie these changes. Although gene duplication plays a major role in genome evolution, studies regarding concerted evolution events among gene family members have been limited in scope and restricted to protein-coding regions, where high sequence similarity is easily detectable. Results We describe a mammalian-specific expansion of more than 20 rapidly-evolving genes on human chromosome Xq22.1. Many of these are highly divergent in their protein-coding regions yet contain a conserved sequence motif in their 5' UTRs which appears to have been maintained by multiple events of concerted evolution. These events have led to the generation of chimaeric genes, each with a 5' UTR and a protein-coding region that possess independent evolutionary histories. We suggest that concerted evolution has occurred via gene conversion independently in different mammalian lineages, and these events have resulted in elevated G+C levels in the encompassing genomic regions. These concerted evolution events occurred within and between genes from three separate protein families ('brain-expressed X-linked' [BEX], WWbp5-like X-linked [WEX] and G-protein-coupled receptor-associated sorting protein [GASP], which often are expressed in mammalian brains and associated with receptor mediated signalling and apoptosis. Conclusion Despite high protein-coding divergence among mammalian-specific genes, we identified a DNA motif common to these genes' 5' UTR exons. The motif has undergone concerted evolution events independently of its neighbouring protein-coding regions, leading to formation of evolutionary chimaeric genes. These findings have implications for the identification of non protein-coding regulatory elements and their lineage-specific evolution in mammals.

  13. Transcription Factor RUNX1 Regulates Platelet PCTP (Phosphatidylcholine Transfer Protein): Implications for Cardiovascular Events: Differential Effects of RUNX1 Variants. (United States)

    Mao, Guangfen; Songdej, Natthapol; Voora, Deepak; Goldfinger, Lawrence E; Del Carpio-Cano, Fabiola E; Myers, Rachel A; Rao, A Koneti


    PCTP (phosphatidylcholine transfer protein) regulates the intermembrane transfer of phosphatidylcholine. Higher platelet PCTP expression is associated with increased platelet responses on activation of protease-activated receptor 4 thrombin receptors noted in black subjects compared with white subjects. Little is known about the regulation of platelet PCTP. Haplodeficiency of RUNX1, a major hematopoietic transcription factor, is associated with thrombocytopenia and impaired platelet responses on activation. Platelet expression profiling of a patient with a RUNX1 loss-of-function mutation revealed a 10-fold downregulation of the PCTP gene compared with healthy controls. We pursued the hypothesis that PCTP is regulated by RUNX1 and that PCTP expression is correlated with cardiovascular events. We studied RUNX1 binding to the PCTP promoter using DNA-protein binding studies and human erythroleukemia cells and promoter activity using luciferase reporter studies. We assessed the relationship between RUNX1 and PCTP in peripheral blood RNA and PCTP and death or myocardial infarction in 2 separate patient cohorts (587 total patients) with cardiovascular disease. Platelet PCTP protein in the patient was reduced by ≈50%. DNA-protein binding studies showed RUNX1 binding to consensus sites in ≈1 kB of PCTP promoter. PCTP expression was increased with RUNX1 overexpression and reduced with RUNX1 knockdown in human erythroleukemia cells, indicating that PCTP is regulated by RUNX1. Studies in 2 cohorts of patients showed that RUNX1 expression in blood correlated with PCTP gene expression; PCTP expression was higher in black compared with white subjects and was associated with future death/myocardial infarction after adjustment for age, sex, and race (odds ratio, 2.05; 95% confidence interval 1.6-2.7; P<0.0001). RUNX1 expression is known to initiate at 2 alternative promoters, a distal P1 and a proximal P2 promoter. In patient cohorts, there were differential effects of RUNX1

  14. Type 2 diabetes mellitus--genes or intrauterine environment? An embryo transfer paradigm in rats. (United States)

    Gill-Randall, R; Adams, D; Ollerton, R L; Lewis, M; Alcolado, J C


    The familial predisposition to Type 2 diabetes mellitus is mediated by both genetic and intrauterine environmental factors. In the normal course of events, maternal genes always develop in the same uterus, thus restricting studies aimed at investigating the relative contribution of these factors. We have developed an embryo transfer paradigm in rats to overcome this difficulty. Euglycaemic female Wistar rats were superovulated and mated with male Wistar rats. The following day, fertilised eggs were transferred into pseudo-pregnant female Wistar rats or hyperglycaemic Goto Kakizaki (GK) rats. Pregnancies were allowed to go to term. Offspring were weighed at 6 weeks, 3 months and 6 months of age and an intravenous glucose tolerance test was carried out at 6 months of age. Offspring from Wistar into Wistar embryo transfers (n=20) were not significantly hyperglycaemic compared to the non-manipulated Wistar stock colony (n=26). However, offspring from Wistar gametes reared in hyperglycaemic GK mothers (n=51) were significantly lighter at 6 weeks of age (156+/-4.1 g vs 180+/-6.1 g [mean +/- SEM], p<0.01) and significantly more hyperglycaemic at 6 months of age (fasting glucose 6.6+/-0.18 mmol/l vs 4.8+/-0.21 mmol/l, mean blood glucose during glucose tolerance test 14.3+/-0.31 mmol/l vs 11.1+/-0.28 mmol/l, p<0.01) than Wistar gametes transferred back into euglycaemic Wistar mothers. When GK rats were superovulated and mated together, transfer of 1-day-old embryos into pseudo-pregnant Wistar dams did not alleviate hyperglycaemia in adult offspring. In GK rats, a euglycaemic intrauterine environment cannot overcome the strong genetic predisposition to diabetes. However, in Wistar rats with a low genetic risk of diabetes, exposure to hyperglycaemia in utero significantly increases the risk of diabetes in adult life.

  15. Transfer of energy pathway genes in microbial enhanced biological phosphorus removal communities. (United States)

    Wong, Dennis H-J; Beiko, Robert G


    Lateral gene transfer (LGT) is an important evolutionary process in microbial evolution. In sewage treatment plants, LGT of antibiotic resistance and xenobiotic degradation-related proteins has been suggested, but the role of LGT outside these processes is unknown. Microbial communities involved in Enhanced Biological Phosphorus Removal (EBPR) have been used to treat wastewater in the last 50 years and may provide insights into adaptation to an engineered environment. We introduce two different types of analysis to identify LGT in EBPR sewage communities, based on identifying assembled sequences with more than one strong taxonomic match, and on unusual phylogenetic patterns. We applied these methods to investigate the role of LGT in six energy-related metabolic pathways. The analyses identified overlapping but non-identical sets of transferred enzymes. All of these were homologous with sequences from known mobile genetic elements, and many were also in close proximity to transposases and integrases in the EBPR data set. The taxonomic method had higher sensitivity than the phylogenetic method, identifying more potential LGTs. Both analyses identified the putative transfer of five enzymes within an Australian community, two in a Danish community, and none in a US-derived culture. Our methods were able to identify sequences with unusual phylogenetic or compositional properties as candidate LGT events. The association of these candidates with known mobile elements supports the hypothesis of transfer. The results of our analysis strongly suggest that LGT has influenced the development of functionally important energy-related pathways in EBPR systems, but transfers may be unique to each community due to different operating conditions or taxonomic composition.

  16. Discrete event simulation for petroleum transfers involving harbors, refineries and pipelines

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Martins, Marcella S.R.; Lueders, Ricardo; Delgado, Myriam R.B.S. [Universidade Tecnologica Federal do Parana (UTFPR), Curitiba, PR (Brazil)


    Nowadays a great effort has been spent by companies to improve their logistics in terms of programming of events that affect production and distribution of products. In this case, simulation can be a valuable tool for evaluating different behaviors. The objective of this work is to build a discrete event simulation model for scheduling of operational activities in complexes containing one harbor and two refineries interconnected by a pipeline infrastructure. The model was developed in Arena package, based on three sub-models that control pier allocation, loading of tanks, and transfers to refineries through pipelines. Preliminary results obtained for a given control policy, show that profit can be calculated by taking into account many parameters such as oil costs on ships, pier using, over-stay of ships and interface costs. Such problem has already been considered in the literature but using different strategies. All these factors should be considered in a real-world operation where decision making tools are necessary to obtain high returns. (author)

  17. AMPTE IRM observations of waves associated with flux transfer events in the magnetosphere (United States)

    Labelle, J.; Treumann, R. A.; Haerendel, G.; Bauer, O. H.; Paschmann, G.


    The AMPTE IRM wave instrument has been applied to the study of flux transfer events (FTE's). This initial investigation concentrates on FTE's observed in the magnetosphere during the fall of 1984. The wave morphology consists of four significant features: at frequencies below the ion gyrofrequency, magnetic fluctuations occur with amplitudes of the order of 1 nT; at frequencies from a few hertz to a few hundred hertz, electric field fluctuations are observed which have a broadband amplitude of a few millivolts per meter, which are perpendicularly polarized at the lowest frequencies, and which are partly electrostatic and partly electromagnetic; in the frequency range from 100 Hz to 10 kHz, broadband spikelike waves occur with a time-averaged amplitude of about 0.1 mV/m; and near the electron plasma frequency, bursts of waves occur at the boundaries of FTE's. In none of the 25 events surveyed does the total broadband amplitude of all the waves exceed a few millivolts per meter, an amplitude far too small to provide the dissipation required by 'traditional' reconnection models in which the dissipation region has a thickness the order of an ion gyroradius. Thus, either all of the FTE's are observed at some distance from the diffusion region, or the observable waves play no significant role in the diffusion process, or 'traditional' reconnection models do not apply to reconnection in FTE's.

  18. Transduction-like gene transfer in the methanogen Methanococcus voltae (United States)

    Bertani, G.


    Strain PS of Methanococcus voltae (a methanogenic, anaerobic archaebacterium) was shown to generate spontaneously 4.4-kbp chromosomal DNA fragments that are fully protected from DNase and that, upon contact with a cell, transform it genetically. This activity, here called VTA (voltae transfer agent), affects all markers tested: three different auxotrophies (histidine, purine, and cobalamin) and resistance to BES (2-bromoethanesulfonate, an inhibitor of methanogenesis). VTA was most effectively prepared by culture filtration. This process disrupted a fraction of the M. voltae cells (which have only an S-layer covering their cytoplasmic membrane). VTA was rapidly inactivated upon storage. VTA particles were present in cultures at concentrations of approximately two per cell. Gene transfer activity varied from a minimum of 2 x 10(-5) (BES resistance) to a maximum of 10(-3) (histidine independence) per donor cell. Very little VTA was found free in culture supernatants. The phenomenon is functionally similar to generalized transduction, but there is no evidence, for the time being, of intrinsically viral (i.e., containing a complete viral genome) particles. Consideration of VTA DNA size makes the existence of such viral particles unlikely. If they exist, they must be relatively few in number;perhaps they differ from VTA particles in size and other properties and thus escaped detection. Digestion of VTA DNA with the AluI restriction enzyme suggests that it is a random sample of the bacterial DNA, except for a 0.9-kbp sequence which is amplified relative to the rest of the bacterial chromosome. A VTA-sized DNA fraction was demonstrated in a few other isolates of M. voltae.

  19. Potential for horizontal gene transfer in microbial communities of the terrestrial subsurface. (United States)

    Coombs, Jonna M


    The deep terrestrial subsurface is a vast, largely unexplored environment that is oligotrophic, highly heterogeneous, and may contain extremes of both physical and chemical factors. In spite of harsh conditions, subsurface studies at several widely distributed geographic sites have revealed diverse communities of viable organisms, which have provided evidence of low but detectable metabolic activity. Although much of the terrestrial subsurface may be considered to be distant and isolated, the concept of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) in this environment has far-reaching implications for bioremediation efforts and groundwater quality, industrial harvesting of subsurface natural resources such as petroleum, and accurate assessment of the risks associated with DNA release and transport from genetically modified organisms. This chapter will explore what is known about some of the major mechanisms of HGT, and how the information gained from surface organisms might apply to conditions in the terrestrial subsurface. Evidence for the presence of mobile elements in subsurface bacteria and limited retrospective studies examining genetic signatures of potential past gene transfer events will be discussed.

  20. Broad-Host Range Vector-Particle: Gene Transfer Particles From Thermal Vents (United States)

    Chiura, H. X.; Nakamura, K.; Fukazawa, Y.; Nakata, D.; Tomaru, A.; Okita, N.; Hoaki, T.


    Viruses or virus-like particles (VLPs) are common in aquatic ecosystems, however, VLP-host interactions and its commitments to gene transfer in the environment is yet unclear. We have proposed that at least some of the widely distributed VLPs could be general gene transfer agents among a wide range of microbial host cells, and might function as a universal vector (1-4). To elucidate such a broad host range gene transfer mediated by "VLP", the sampling site was extended to the hyper hydrothermal vent, and boring cores. VLP (v) and cell (b) abundances per ml water samples from drilling holes of Suiyo seamount were: APSK04 (28°34.303'N, 140°38.618'E, 1385 m deep, 21°C, b = 8.26 *E^{6}, v = 6.03 x 10^{6}); APSK07 (28°34.299'N, 140°38.690'E, 1386 m deep, 250.5°C, b = 5.33 \\times 104, v = 2.52 \\times 104); a natural vent near APSK05 (28°34.322'N, 140°38.594'E, 1382 m deep, 304.7°C, b = 3.23 x 10^{4}, v = 1.85 x 10^{4}). A boring core sample was obtained from APSK06 (28°34.313'N, 140°38.617', 1386 m deep), from which a hyper thermophilic Archaean, Thermococcus kodakaraensis was successfully cultivated in sulphur supplemented medium between 70 and 90°C. VLP production was observed from T. kodakaraensis, whose VLP (v) and cell (b) abundances per ml at 480 h culture at 70°C were: b = 3.61 *E^{9}, v = 3.46 *E^{9}. Transduction experiment at multiplicity of infection of ca 0.2 using particles from APSK07 and T. kodakaraensis showed a plate efficiency on recipient Escherichia coli AB1157 by ca 72 % and ca 89 % regardless of UV treatment of the particle. Gene transfer frequency of APSK07 particle was (x 10^{-5} cfu/particle) between 2.4 and 0.92, and that of T. kodakaraensis particle was between x 10^{-4} and x 10^{-5}$ cfu/particle. These findings suggest the non-specific gene transfer by such particles may be a ubiquitous event in the natural environment. Such gene transfer particles may have mediated gene flux among phylogenetically diverse microbial

  1. No evidence of inhibition of horizontal gene transfer by CRISPR-Cas on evolutionary timescales. (United States)

    Gophna, Uri; Kristensen, David M; Wolf, Yuri I; Popa, Ovidiu; Drevet, Christine; Koonin, Eugene V


    The CRISPR (clustered, regularly, interspaced, short, palindromic repeats)-Cas (CRISPR-associated genes) systems of archaea and bacteria provide adaptive immunity against viruses and other selfish elements and are believed to curtail horizontal gene transfer (HGT). Limiting acquisition of new genetic material could be one of the sources of the fitness cost of CRISPR-Cas maintenance and one of the causes of the patchy distribution of CRISPR-Cas among bacteria, and across environments. We sought to test the hypothesis that the activity of CRISPR-Cas in microbes is negatively correlated with the extent of recent HGT. Using three independent measures of HGT, we found no significant dependence between the length of CRISPR arrays, which reflects the activity of the immune system, and the estimated number of recent HGT events. In contrast, we observed a significant negative dependence between the estimated extent of HGT and growth temperature of microbes, which could be explained by the lower genetic diversity in hotter environments. We hypothesize that the relevant events in the evolution of resistance to mobile elements and proclivity for HGT, to which CRISPR-Cas systems seem to substantially contribute, occur on the population scale rather than on the timescale of species evolution.

  2. Probing energy transfer events in the light harvesting complex 2 (LH2) of Rhodobacter sphaeroides with two-dimensional spectroscopy. (United States)

    Fidler, Andrew F; Singh, Ved P; Long, Phillip D; Dahlberg, Peter D; Engel, Gregory S


    Excitation energy transfer events in the photosynthetic light harvesting complex 2 (LH2) of Rhodobacter sphaeroides are investigated with polarization controlled two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy. A spectrally broadened pulse allows simultaneous measurement of the energy transfer within and between the two absorption bands at 800 nm and 850 nm. The phased all-parallel polarization two-dimensional spectra resolve the initial events of energy transfer by separating the intra-band and inter-band relaxation processes across the two-dimensional map. The internal dynamics of the 800 nm region of the spectra are resolved as a cross peak that grows in on an ultrafast time scale, reflecting energy transfer between higher lying excitations of the B850 chromophores into the B800 states. We utilize a polarization sequence designed to highlight the initial excited state dynamics which uncovers an ultrafast transfer component between the two bands that was not observed in the all-parallel polarization data. We attribute the ultrafast transfer component to energy transfer from higher energy exciton states to lower energy states of the strongly coupled B850 chromophores. Connecting the spectroscopic signature to the molecular structure, we reveal multiple relaxation pathways including a cyclic transfer of energy between the two rings of the complex.

  3. The Use of Viral Vectors in Gene Transfer Therapy


    Dziaková, A.; Valenčáková, A.; Hatalová, E.; J. Kalinová


    Gene therapy is strategy based on using genes as pharmaceuticals. Gene therapy is a treatment that involves altering the genes inside body's cells to stop disease. Genes contain DNA- the code controlling body form and function. Genes that do not work properly can cause disease. Gene therapy replaces a faulty gene or adds a new gene in an attempt to cure disease or improve the ability of the body to fight disease. Gene therapy holds promise for treating a wide range of diseases, including canc...

  4. Persistent gene expression in mouse nasal epithelia following feline immunodeficiency virus-based vector gene transfer. (United States)

    Sinn, Patrick L; Burnight, Erin R; Hickey, Melissa A; Blissard, Gary W; McCray, Paul B


    Gene transfer development for treatment or prevention of cystic fibrosis lung disease has been limited by the inability of vectors to efficiently and persistently transduce airway epithelia. Influenza A is an enveloped virus with natural lung tropism; however, pseudotyping feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV)-based lentiviral vector with the hemagglutinin envelope protein proved unsuccessful. Conversely, pseudotyping FIV with the envelope protein from influenza D (Thogoto virus GP75) resulted in titers of 10(6) transducing units (TU)/ml and conferred apical entry into well-differentiated human airway epithelial cells. Baculovirus GP64 envelope glycoproteins share sequence identity with influenza D GP75 envelope glycoproteins. Pseudotyping FIV with GP64 from three species of baculovirus resulted in titers of 10(7) to 10(9) TU/ml. Of note, GP64 from Autographa californica multicapsid nucleopolyhedrovirus resulted in high-titer FIV preparations (approximately 10(9) TU/ml) and conferred apical entry into polarized primary cultures of human airway epithelia. Using a luciferase reporter gene and bioluminescence imaging, we observed persistent gene expression from in vivo gene transfer in the mouse nose with A. californica GP64-pseudotyped FIV (AcGP64-FIV). Longitudinal bioluminescence analysis documented persistent expression in nasal epithelia for approximately 1 year without significant decline. According to histological analysis using a LacZ reporter gene, olfactory and respiratory epithelial cells were transduced. In addition, methylcellulose-formulated AcGP64-FIV transduced mouse nasal epithelia with much greater efficiency than similarly formulated vesicular stomatitis virus glycoprotein-pseudotyped FIV. These data suggest that AcGP64-FIV efficiently transduces and persistently expresses a transgene in nasal epithelia in the absence of agents that disrupt the cellular tight junction integrity.

  5. An Efficient Low Cost Method for Gene Transfer to T Lymphocytes


    Leonardo Chicaybam; Andressa Laino Sodre; Bianca Azevedo Curzio; Martin Hernan Bonamino


    UNLABELLED: Gene transfer to T lymphocytes has historically relied on retro and lentivirus, but recently transposon-based gene transfer is rising as a simpler and straight forward approach to achieve stable transgene expression. Transfer of expression cassettes to T lymphocytes remains challenging, being based mainly on commercial kits. AIMS: We herein report a convenient and affordable method based on in house made buffers, generic cuvettes and utilization of the widely available Lonza nucle...

  6. Inter-genomic displacement via lateral gene transfer of bacterial trp operons in an overall context of vertical genealogy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keyhani Nemat O


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The growing conviction that lateral gene transfer plays a significant role in prokaryote genealogy opens up a need for comprehensive evaluations of gene-enzyme systems on a case-by-case basis. Genes of tryptophan biosynthesis are frequently organized as whole-pathway operons, an attribute that is expected to facilitate multi-gene transfer in a single step. We have asked whether events of lateral gene transfer are sufficient to have obscured our ability to track the vertical genealogy that underpins tryptophan biosynthesis. Results In 47 complete-genome Bacteria, the genes encoding the seven catalytic domains that participate in primary tryptophan biosynthesis were distinguished from any paralogs or xenologs engaged in other specialized functions. A reliable list of orthologs with carefully ascertained functional roles has thus been assembled and should be valuable as an annotation resource. The protein domains associated with primary tryptophan biosynthesis were then concatenated, yielding single amino-acid sequence strings that represent the entire tryptophan pathway. Lateral gene transfer of several whole-pathway trp operons was demonstrated by use of phylogenetic analysis. Lateral gene transfer of partial-pathway trp operons was also shown, with newly recruited genes functioning either in primary biosynthesis (rarely or specialized metabolism (more frequently. Conclusions (i Concatenated tryptophan protein trees are congruent with 16S rRNA subtrees provided that the genomes represented are of sufficiently close phylogenetic spacing. There are currently seven tryptophan congruency groups in the Bacteria. Recognition of a succession of others can be expected in the near future, but ultimately these should coalesce to a single grouping that parallels the 16S rRNA tree (except for cases of lateral gene transfer. (ii The vertical trace of evolution for tryptophan biosynthesis can be deduced. The daunting complexities engendered

  7. Inter-genomic displacement via lateral gene transfer of bacterial trp operons in an overall context of vertical genealogy. (United States)

    Xie, Gary; Bonner, Carol A; Song, Jian; Keyhani, Nemat O; Jensen, Roy A


    The growing conviction that lateral gene transfer plays a significant role in prokaryote genealogy opens up a need for comprehensive evaluations of gene-enzyme systems on a case-by-case basis. Genes of tryptophan biosynthesis are frequently organized as whole-pathway operons, an attribute that is expected to facilitate multi-gene transfer in a single step. We have asked whether events of lateral gene transfer are sufficient to have obscured our ability to track the vertical genealogy that underpins tryptophan biosynthesis. In 47 complete-genome Bacteria, the genes encoding the seven catalytic domains that participate in primary tryptophan biosynthesis were distinguished from any paralogs or xenologs engaged in other specialized functions. A reliable list of orthologs with carefully ascertained functional roles has thus been assembled and should be valuable as an annotation resource. The protein domains associated with primary tryptophan biosynthesis were then concatenated, yielding single amino-acid sequence strings that represent the entire tryptophan pathway. Lateral gene transfer of several whole-pathway trp operons was demonstrated by use of phylogenetic analysis. Lateral gene transfer of partial-pathway trp operons was also shown, with newly recruited genes functioning either in primary biosynthesis (rarely) or specialized metabolism (more frequently). (i) Concatenated tryptophan protein trees are congruent with 16S rRNA subtrees provided that the genomes represented are of sufficiently close phylogenetic spacing. There are currently seven tryptophan congruency groups in the Bacteria. Recognition of a succession of others can be expected in the near future, but ultimately these should coalesce to a single grouping that parallels the 16S rRNA tree (except for cases of lateral gene transfer). (ii) The vertical trace of evolution for tryptophan biosynthesis can be deduced. The daunting complexities engendered by paralogy, xenology, and idiosyncrasies of

  8. Gene recruitment--a common mechanism in the evolution of transfer RNA gene families. (United States)

    Wang, Xiujuan; Lavrov, Dennis V


    The evolution of alloacceptor transfer RNAs (tRNAs) has been traditionally thought to occur vertically and reflect the evolution of the genetic code. Yet there have been several indications that a tRNA gene could evolve horizontally, from a copy of an alloacceptor tRNA gene in the same genome. Earlier, we provided the first unambiguous evidence for the occurrence of such "tRNA gene recruitment" in nature--in the mitochondrial (mt) genome of the demosponge Axinella corrugata. Yet the extent and the pattern of this process in the evolution of tRNA gene families remained unclear. Here we analyzed tRNA genes from 21 mt genomes of demosponges as well as nuclear genomes of rhesus macaque, chimpanzee and human. We found four new cases of alloacceptor tRNA gene recruitment in mt genomes and eleven cases in the nuclear genomes. In most of these cases we observed a single nucleotide substitution at the middle position of the anticodon, which resulted in the change of not only the tRNA's amino-acid identity but also the class of the amino-acyl tRNA synthetases (aaRSs) involved in amino-acylation. We hypothesize that the switch to a different class of aaRSs may have prevented the conflict between anticodon and amino-acid identities of recruited tRNAs. Overall our results suggest that gene recruitment is a common phenomenon in tRNA multigene family evolution and should be taken into consideration when tRNA evolutionary history is reconstructed.

  9. Modeling horizontal gene transfer (HGT in the gut of the Chagas disease vector Rhodnius prolixus

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    Durvasula Ravi V


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Paratransgenesis is an approach to reducing arthropod vector competence using genetically modified symbionts. When applied to control of Chagas disease, the symbiont bacterium Rhodococcus rhodnii, resident in the gut lumen of the triatomine vector Rhodnius prolixus (Hemiptera: Reduviidae, is transformed to export cecropin A, an insect immune peptide. Cecropin A is active against Trypanosoma cruzi, the causative agent of Chagas disease. While proof of concept has been achieved in laboratory studies, a rigorous and comprehensive risk assessment is required prior to consideration of field release. An important part of this assessment involves estimating probability of transgene horizontal transfer to environmental organisms (HGT. This article presents a two-part risk assessment methodology: a theoretical model predicting HGT in the gut of R. prolixus from the genetically transformed symbiont R. rhodnii to a closely related non-target bacterium, Gordona rubropertinctus, in the absence of selection pressure, and a series of laboratory trials designed to test the model. Results The model predicted an HGT frequency of less than 1.14 × 10-16 per 100,000 generations at the 99% certainty level. The model was iterated twenty times, with the mean of the ten highest outputs evaluated at the 99% certainty level. Laboratory trials indicated no horizontal gene transfer, supporting the conclusions of the model. Conclusions The model treats HGT as a composite event, the probability of which is determined by the joint probability of three independent events: gene transfer through the modalities of transformation, transduction, and conjugation. Genes are represented in matrices and Monte Carlo method and Markov chain analysis are used to simulate and evaluate environmental conditions. The model is intended as a risk assessment instrument and predicts HGT frequency of less than 1.14 × 10-16 per 100,000 generations. With laboratory studies that

  10. Asialoglycoprotein receptor and liposome synergistically mediate the gene transfer into primary rat hepatocytes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    李崇辉; 温守明; 翟海峰; 孙曼霁


    Gene transfer into primary rat hepatocytes was performed by employing cationic liposome as DNA carrier and the specific ligand of hepatic asialoglycoprotein receptor (ASGPR), asialofetuin, as liver-targeting ligand. The resuits showed that asialofetuin, when added to the gene transfer complexes, could significantly increase the hepatocyte transfeetion efficiency, and alleviate the cellular toxicity of Lipofectin. Several synthetic ligands of ASGPR (galactosyl albumin) could also increase the transfection efficiency of hepatocyte like asialofetuin. It was proved that ASGPR and cationic liposome could synergistically mediate the gene transfer into primary rat hepatoeytes. This novel gene delivery system provided a safer, more simple and efficient gene transfer method for primary hepatocytes, and showed prospecting application in hepatic gene therapy.

  11. Horizontal gene transfer among microorganisms in food: current knowledge and future perspectives. (United States)

    Rossi, Franca; Rizzotti, Lucia; Felis, Giovanna E; Torriani, Sandra


    The possibility of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) among microorganisms in food matrices has been specifically targeted in a few investigations, though most current knowledge has been obtained indirectly or derived from genome sequence analyses. In this review, we have assembled reported examples of the HGT events that probably occurred in food matrices since the bacterial partners involved are commonly found in association in a food matrix or are specifically adapted to it. Exchanged genes include those encoding for substrate utilization, bacteriocin, exopolysaccharide and biogenic amine (BA) production, immunity to bacteriophages and antibiotic resistance (AR). While the acquisition of new traits involved in substrate utilization led to the natural genetic improvement of the microbial cultures for food production, the acquisition of hazardous traits, e.g., AR, virulence or BA production genes, can give rise to health concerns in otherwise innocuous species. Available evidence suggests that it would be opportune to determine what conditions favour HGT among bacteria in food ecosystems in order to naturally obtain improved starter or adjunct cultures, and also to prevent the propagation of hazardous traits.

  12. Quality of Interhospital Transfer Communication Practices and Association With Adverse Events on an Internal Medicine Hospitalist Service. (United States)

    Borofsky, Jennifer S; Bartsch, Jason C; Howard, Alan B; Repp, Allen B


    Communication practices around interhospital transfer have not been rigorously assessed in adult medicine patients. Furthermore, the clinical implications of such practices have not been reported. This case-control study was designed to assess the quality of communication between clinicians during interhospital transfer and to determine if posttransfer adverse events (PTAEs) are associated with suboptimal communication. Cases included patients transferred to a Medicine Hospitalist Service from an outside hospital who subsequently experienced a PTAE, defined as unplanned transfer to an intensive care unit or death within 24 hours of transfer. Control patients also underwent interhospital transfer but did not experience a PTAE. A blinded investigator retrospectively reviewed the recorded pretransfer phone conversations between sending and receiving clinicians for adherence to a set of 13 empiric best practice communication elements. The primary outcome was the mean communication score, on a scale of 0-13. Mean scores between PTAE (8.3; 95% confidence interval [CI], 7.6-8.9) and control groups (7.9; 95% CI, 7.1-8.8) did not differ significantly (p = .50), although suboptimal communication on a subset of these elements was associated with increased PTAEs. Communication around interhospital transfer appears suboptimal compared with an empiric set of standard communication elements. Posttransfer adverse events were not associated with aggregate adherence to these standards.

  13. Evidence for extensive horizontal gene transfer from the draft genome of a tardigrade


    Boothby, Thomas C; Tenlen, Jennifer R.; Smith, Frank W.; Wang, Jeremy R; Patanella, Kiera A.; Osborne Nishimura, Erin; Tintori, Sophia C.; Li, Qing; Jones, Corbin D.; Yandell, Mark; Messina, David N.; Glasscock, Jarret; Goldstein, Bob


    Despite fascinating scientists for over 200 years, little at the molecular level is known about tardigrades, microscopic animals resistant to extreme stresses. We present the genome of a tardigrade. Approximately one-sixth of the genes in the tardigrade genome were found to have been acquired through horizontal transfer, a proportion nearly double the proportion of previous known cases of extreme horizontal gene transfer (HGT) in animals. Foreign genes have impacted the composition of the tar...

  14. Spider Transcriptomes Identify Ancient Large-Scale Gene Duplication Event Potentially Important in Silk Gland Evolution. (United States)

    Clarke, Thomas H; Garb, Jessica E; Hayashi, Cheryl Y; Arensburger, Peter; Ayoub, Nadia A


    The evolution of specialized tissues with novel functions, such as the silk synthesizing glands in spiders, is likely an influential driver of adaptive success. Large-scale gene duplication events and subsequent paralog divergence are thought to be required for generating evolutionary novelty. Such an event has been proposed for spiders, but not tested. We de novo assembled transcriptomes from three cobweb weaving spider species. Based on phylogenetic analyses of gene families with representatives from each of the three species, we found numerous duplication events indicative of a whole genome or segmental duplication. We estimated the age of the gene duplications relative to several speciation events within spiders and arachnids and found that the duplications likely occurred after the divergence of scorpions (order Scorpionida) and spiders (order Araneae), but before the divergence of the spider suborders Mygalomorphae and Araneomorphae, near the evolutionary origin of spider silk glands. Transcripts that are expressed exclusively or primarily within black widow silk glands are more likely to have a paralog descended from the ancient duplication event and have elevated amino acid replacement rates compared with other transcripts. Thus, an ancient large-scale gene duplication event within the spider lineage was likely an important source of molecular novelty during the evolution of silk gland-specific expression. This duplication event may have provided genetic material for subsequent silk gland diversification in the true spiders (Araneomorphae). © The Author(s) 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  15. The ionospheric response to flux transfer events: the first few minutes

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    A. S. Rodger

    Full Text Available We utilise high-time resolution measurements from the PACE HF radar at Halley, Antarctica to explore the evolution of the ionospheric response during the first few minutes after enhanced reconnection occurs at the magnetopause. We show that the plasma velocity increases associated with flux transfer events (FTEs occur first ~100–200 km equatorward of the region to which magnetosheath (cusp precipitation maps to the ionosphere. We suggest that these velocity variations start near the ionospheric footprint of the boundary between open and closed magnetic field lines. We show that these velocity variations have rise times ~100 s and fall times of ~10 s. When these velocity transients reach the latitude of the cusp precipitation, sometimes the equatorward boundary of the precipitation begins to move equatorward, the expected and previously reported ionospheric signature of enhanced reconnection. A hypothesis is proposed to explain the velocity variations. It involves the rapid outflow of magnetospheric electrons into the magnetosheath along the most recently reconnected field lines. Several predictions are made arising from the proposed explanation which could be tested with ground-based and space-based observations.

  16. Cluster observations of bounday layer structure and a flux transfer event near the cusp

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    R. C. Fear


    Full Text Available On the 25th January 2002 between 10:00 and 12:00 UT, the four Cluster spacecraft passed through the northern high-latitude cusp, the dayside magnetosphere and into the magnetosheath in a linear formation. In the magnetosphere the PEACE electron spectrometers on the four spacecraft all observed a series of transient bursts of magnetosheath-like plasma, but without bipolar magnetic signatures in the magnetopause normal component as might be expected if the plasma had been injected by transient reconnection (flux transfer events – FTEs. Reordering the data using the magnetopause transition parameter reveals that these plasma observations, the related variations in the magnetic field and the balance of magnetic and thermal gas pressures are consistent with transient entries into a stable high-latitude boundary layer structure. However, once some of the spacecraft entered the magnetosheath, FTE signatures were observed outside the magnetopause at the same time as some of the boundary layer entries occurred at the other spacecraft inside. Thus, (a the lack of a bipolar BN signature is inconsistent with the traditional picture of a magnetospheric FTE, and (b the cause of the observed entry of the spacecraft into the boundary layer (pressure pulse or passing magnetosheath FTE can only be determined by spacecraft observations in the magnetosheath.

    Keywords. Magnetospheric physics (Magnetopause, cusp and bondary layers; Solar wind- magnetosphere interactions; Magnetosheath

  17. Linear energy transfer dependence of single event gate rupture in SiC MOS capacitors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Deki, Manato, E-mail: [The University of Tokushima, 2-1 Minami-Johsanjima-cho, Tokushima 770-8506 (Japan); Japan Atomic Energy Agency, 1233 Watanuki, Takasaki, Gunma 370-1292 (Japan); Makino, Takahiro, E-mail: [Japan Atomic Energy Agency, 1233 Watanuki, Takasaki, Gunma 370-1292 (Japan); Iwamoto, Naoya, E-mail: [Japan Atomic Energy Agency, 1233 Watanuki, Takasaki, Gunma 370-1292 (Japan); Onoda, Shinobu, E-mail: [Japan Atomic Energy Agency, 1233 Watanuki, Takasaki, Gunma 370-1292 (Japan); Kojima, Kazutoshi, E-mail: [National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, Tsukuba, Ibaraki (Japan); Tomita, Takuro, E-mail: [The University of Tokushima, 2-1 Minami-Johsanjima-cho, Tokushima 770-8506 (Japan); Ohshima, Takeshi, E-mail: [Japan Atomic Energy Agency, 1233 Watanuki, Takasaki, Gunma 370-1292 (Japan)


    Metal-oxide-semiconductor (MOS) capacitors were fabricated on n-type 4H silicon carbide (SiC) epitaxial layers grown on n-type 4H-SiC substrates, and the currents through the gate oxide of the MOS capacitors were measured under accumulation bias conditions during heavy-ion irradiation. Evaluation of the linear energy transfer (LET) dependence of the critical electric field (E{sub cr}) at which dielectric breakdown occurred in these capacitors revealed that the reciprocal of E{sub cr} (1/E{sub cr}) increased linearly with increasing LET. The slope of LET dependence of 1/E{sub cr} for SiC is lower than that for Si, suggesting that SiC MOS devices are less susceptible to single-event gate rupture (SEGR) than Si MOS devices. The limitation of previously proposed SEGR models based on SiO{sub 2} on Si is discussed, as is the importance of the physical parameters of the oxide and semiconductor materials (bandgap, carrier lifetime and mobility, etc.)

  18. The Use of Viral Vectors in Gene Transfer Therapy

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    A. Dziaková


    Full Text Available Gene therapy is strategy based on using genes as pharmaceuticals. Gene therapy is a treatment that involves altering the genes inside body's cells to stop disease. Genes contain DNA- the code controlling body form and function. Genes that do not work properly can cause disease. Gene therapy replaces a faulty gene or adds a new gene in an attempt to cure disease or improve the ability of the body to fight disease. Gene therapy holds promise for treating a wide range of diseases, including cancer, cystic fibrosis, heart disease, diabetes, hemophilia and AIDS. Various types of genetic material are used in gene therapy; double-stranded DNA (dsDNA, single-stranded DNA (ssDNA, plasmid DNA and antisense oligodeoxynucleotides (ASON. The success of gene therapy depends on assuring the entrance of the therapeutic gene to targeted cells without any form of biodegradation. Commonly used vectors in gene therapy are: adenoviruses (400 clinical studies; 23.8%, retroviruses (344 clinical studies; 20.5%, unenveloped/plasmid DNA (304 clinical studies, 17.7%, adeno-associated viruses (75 clinical studies; 4.5% and others. In this paper, we have reviewed the major gene delivery vectors and recent improvements made in their design meant to overcome the issues that commonly arise with the use of gene therapy vectors.

  19. Direct gene transfer into rat articular cartilage by in vivo electroporation. (United States)

    Grossin, Laurent; Cournil-Henrionnet, Christel; Mir, Lluis M; Liagre, Bertrand; Dumas, Dominique; Etienne, Stéphanie; Guingamp, Corinne; Netter, Patrick; Gillet, Pierre


    To establish a system for efficient direct in vivo gene targeting into rat joint, we have evaluated a strategy of gene transfer by means of the delivery of external electric pulses (EP) to the knee after intra-articular injection of a reporter gene (GFP). Rats were killed at various times after the electro gene-therapy to analyze GFP gene expression by immunohistochemistry. GFP staining was detected in the superficial, middle, and deep zones of the patellar cartilage at days 2 and 9, and thereafter only in the deep zone (months 1 and 2). The average percentage of GFP-positive cells was estimated at 30% both one and 2 months after the gene transfer. Moreover, no pathologic change caused by the EP was detected in the cartilage. The level and stability of the long-term GFP expression found in this study demonstrate the feasibility of a treatment of joint disorders (inflammatory or degenerative, focal or diffuse) using electric gene transfer.

  20. Gene Transfer to Dendritic Cells Induced a Protective Immunity against Melanoma

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Pat Metharom; Kay A.O. Ellem; Ming Q. Wei


    Lentiviral vectors have shown promises for efficient gene transfer to dividing as well as nondividing cells. In this study, we explored lentiviral vector-mediated, the entire mTRP-2 gene transfer and expression in dendritic cells (DCs). Adoptive transfer of DCs-expressing mTRP-2 (DC-HR'CmT2) into C57BL/6 mouse was also assessed.Dendritic cells were harvested from bone marrow and functional DCs were proved by allogeneic mixed lymphocyte reaction. Lentiviral vectors were produced by transient transfection of 293T cells. Transduction of DCs was proved by marker gene expression and PCR and RT-PCR amplification. Implantation of the transduced DCs, depletion of immune cells as well as the survival of the mice after tumour challenge were investigated. High efficiency of gene transfer into mature DCs was achieved. The high level expression of the functional antigen (TRP-2) and induction of protective immunity by adoptive transfer of TRP-2 gene modified DCs were demonstrated. In vivo study showed a complete protection of mice from further melanoma cell challenge. In comparison, only 83% of mice survived when mTRP-2 peptide-pulsed DCs were administered, suggesting the generation of specific protection. Together, these results demonstrated the usefulness of this gene transfer to DC approach for immunotherapy of cancer and indicated that using tumour associated antigens (TAAs) for gene transfer may be potentially beneficial for the therapy of melanoma.

  1. Assessment and Improvement of Gene Transfer into Human Hematopoietic Stem Cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    D.A. Breems (Dimitri)


    textabstractThe application of somatic gene transfer as a potential treatment in human disease has progressed from speculation to reality in a short time [4,20,21,84,85,87,105,117,174]. In May 1989 the first clinical marker gene protocol took place [145], followed by the first gene therapy protocol

  2. Nuclear transfer of goat somatic cells transgenic for human lactoferrin gene

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lan LI; Wei SHEN; Lingjiang MIN; Qingyu PAN; Yujiang SUN; Jixian DENG; Qingjie PAN


    Transgenic animal mammary gland bioreactors are used to produce recombinant proteins with appropri-ate post-translational modifications.The nuclear transfer of transgenic somatic cells is a powerful method to pro-duce mammary gland bioreactors.We established an effi-cient gene transfer and nuclear transfer approach in goat somatic cells.Gene targeting vector pGBC2LF was con-structed by cloning human lactoferrin (LF) gene cDNA into exon 2 of the milk goat beta-casein gene and the endogenous start codon was replaced by that of human LF gene.Goat fetal fibroblasts were transfected with lin-earized pGBC2LF and 14 cell lines were positive accord-ing to PCR and Southern blot.The transgenic cells were used as donor cells of nuclear transfer and some of recon-structed embryos could develop into blastocyst in vitro.

  3. Leu452His mutation in lipoprotein lipase gene transfer associated with hypertriglyceridemia in mice in vivo.

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    Kaiyue Sun

    Full Text Available Mutated mouse lipoprotein lipase (LPL containing a leucine (L to histidine (H substitution at position 452 was transferred into mouse liver by hydrodynamics-based gene delivery (HD. Mutated-LPL (MLPL gene transfer significantly increased the concentrations of plasma MLPL and triglyceride (TG but significantly decreased the activity of plasma LPL. Moreover, the gene transfer caused adiposis hepatica and significantly increased TG content in mouse liver. To understand the effects of MLPL gene transfer on energy metabolism, we investigated the expression of key functional genes related to energy metabolism in the liver, epididymal fat, and leg muscles. The mRNA contents of hormone-sensitive lipase (HSL, adipose triglyceride lipase (ATGL, fatty acid-binding protein (FABP, and uncoupling protein (UCP were found to be significantly reduced. Furthermore, we investigated the mechanism by which MLPL gene transfer affected fat deposition in the liver, fat tissue, and muscle. The gene expression and protein levels of forkhead Box O3 (FOXO3, AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK, and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma coactivator 1 alpha (PGC-1α were found to be remarkably decreased in the liver, fat and muscle. These results suggest that the Leu452His mutation caused LPL dysfunction and gene transfer of MLPL in vivo produced resistance to the AMPK/PGC-1α signaling pathway in mice.

  4. Horizontal gene transfer and the evolution of transcriptionalregulation in Escherichia coli

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Price, Morgan N.; Dehal, Paramvir S.; Arkin, Adam P.


    Background: Most bacterial genes were acquired by horizontalgene transfer from other bacteria instead of being inherited bycontinuous vertical descent from an ancient ancestor}. To understand howthe regulation of these {acquired} genes evolved, we examined theevolutionary histories of transcription factors and of regulatoryinteractions from the model bacterium Escherichia coli K12. Results:Although most transcription factors have paralogs, these usually arose byhorizontal gene transfer rather than by duplication within the E. colilineage, as previously believed. In general, most neighbor regulators --regulators that are adjacent to genes that they regulate -- were acquiredby horizontal gene transfer, while most global regulators evolvedvertically within the gamma-Proteobacteria. Neighbor regulators wereoften acquired together with the adjacent operon that they regulate, sothe proximity might be maintained by repeated transfers (like "selfishoperons"). Many of the as-yet-uncharacterized (putative) regulators havealso been acquired together with adjacent genes, so we predict that theseare neighbor regulators as well. When we analyzed the histories ofregulatory interactions, we found that the evolution of regulation byduplication was rare, and surprisingly, many of the regulatoryinteractions that are shared between paralogs result from convergentevolution. Another surprise was that horizontally transferred genes aremore likely than other genes to be regulated by multiple regulators, andmost of this complex regulation probably evolved after the transfer.Conclusions: Our results highlight the rapid evolution of niche-specificgene regulation in bacteria.

  5. Conjugal gene transfer between bacteria in soil and rhizosphere.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smit, E.


    The extent of possible conjugal transfer of recombinant DNA present in genetically engineered microorganisms (GEMs) was studied. Occurrence of transfer of recombinant DNA is only one of the concerns regarding the use of GEMs (Chapter 2). Other potential hazards preventing the application of GEMs for

  6. In utero recombinant adeno-associated virus gene transfer in mice, rats, and primates

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    Marrero Luis


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Gene transfer into the amniotic fluid using recombinant adenovirus vectors was shown previously to result in high efficiency transfer of transgenes into the lungs and intestines. Adenovirus mediated in utero gene therapy, however, resulted in expression of the transgene for less than 30 days. Recombinant adenovirus associated viruses (rAAV have the advantage of maintaining the viral genome in daughter cells thus providing for long-term expression of transgenes. Methods Recombinant AAV2 carrying green fluorescent protein (GFP was introduced into the amniotic sac of fetal rodents and nonhuman primates. Transgene maintenance and expression was monitor. Results Gene transfer resulted in rapid uptake and long-term gene expression in mice, rats, and non-human primates. Expression and secretion of the reporter gene, GFP, was readily demonstrated within 72 hours post-therapy. In long-term studies in rats and nonhuman primates, maintenance of GFP DNA, protein expression, and reporter gene secretion was documented for over one year. Conclusions Because only multipotential stem cells are present at the time of therapy, these data demonstrated that in utero gene transfer with AAV2 into stem cells resulted in long-term systemic expression of active transgene roducts. Thus, in utero gene transfer via the amniotic fluid may be useful in treatment of gene disorders.

  7. Horizontal gene transfers link a human MRSA pathogen to contagious bovine mastitis bacteria.

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    Thomas Brody

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Acquisition of virulence factors and antibiotic resistance by many clinically important bacteria can be traced to horizontal gene transfer (HGT between related or evolutionarily distant microflora. Comparative genomic analysis has become an important tool for identifying HGT DNA in emerging pathogens. We have adapted the multi-genome alignment tool EvoPrinter to facilitate discovery of HGT DNA sequences within bacterial genomes and within their mobile genetic elements. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: EvoPrinter analysis of 13 different Staphylococcus aureus genomes revealed that one of the human isolates, the hospital epidemic methicillin-resistant MRSA252 strain, uniquely shares multiple putative HGT DNA sequences with different causative agents of bovine mastitis that are not found in the other human S. aureus isolates. MRSA252 shares over 14 different DNA sequence blocks with the bovine mastitis ET3 S. aureus strain RF122, and many of the HGT DNAs encode virulence factors. EvoPrinter analysis of the MRSA252 chromosome also uncovered virulence-factor encoding HGT events with the genome of Listeria monocytogenes and a Staphylococcus saprophyticus associated plasmid. Both bacteria are also causal agents of contagious bovine mastitis. CONCLUSIONS: EvoPrinter analysis reveals that the human MRSA252 strain uniquely shares multiple DNA sequence blocks with different causative agents of bovine mastitis, suggesting that HGT events may be occurring between these pathogens. These findings have important implications with regard to animal husbandry practices that inadvertently enhance the contact of human and livestock bacterial pathogens.

  8. Widespread distribution of archaeal reverse gyrase in thermophilic bacteria suggests a complex history of vertical inheritance and lateral gene transfers

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    Céline Brochier-Armanet


    Full Text Available Reverse gyrase, an enzyme of uncertain funtion, is present in all hyperthermophilic archaea and bacteria. Previous phylogenetic studies have suggested that the gene for reverse gyrase has an archaeal origin and was transferred laterally (LGT to the ancestors of the two bacterial hyperthermophilic phyla, Thermotogales and Aquificales. Here, we performed an in-depth analysis of the evolutionary history of reverse gyrase in light of genomic progress. We found genes coding for reverse gyrase in the genomes of several thermophilic bacteria that belong to phyla other than Aquificales and Thermotogales. Several of these bacteria are not, strictly speaking, hyperthermophiles because their reported optimal growth temperatures are below 80 °C. Furthermore, we detected a reverse gyrase gene in the sequence of the large plasmid of Thermus thermophilus strain HB8, suggesting a possible mechanism of transfer to the T. thermophilus strain HB8 involving plasmids and transposases. The archaeal part of the reverse gyrase tree is congruent with recent phylogenies of the archaeal domain based on ribosomal proteins or RNA polymerase subunits. Although poorly resolved, the complete reverse gyrase phylogeny suggests an ancient acquisition of the gene by bacteria via one or two LGT events, followed by its secondary distribution by LGT within bacteria. Finally, several genes of archaeal origin located in proximity to the reverse gyrase gene in bacterial genomes have bacterial homologues mostly in thermophiles or hyperthermophiles, raising the possibility that they were co-transferred with the reverse gyrase gene. Our new analysis of the reverse gyrase history strengthens the hypothesis that the acquisition of reverse gyrase may have been a crucial evolutionary step in the adaptation of bacteria to high-temperature environments. However, it also questions the role of this enzyme in thermophilic bacteria and the selective advantage its presence could provide.

  9. Two-dimensional electric field measurements in the ionospheric footprint of a flux transfer event

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    K. A. McWilliams

    Full Text Available Line-of-sight Doppler velocities from the SuperDARN CUTLASS HF radar pair have been combined to produce the first two-dimensional vector measurements of the convection pattern throughout the ionospheric footprint of a flux transfer event (a pulsed ionospheric flow, or PIF. Very stable and moderate interplanetary magnetic field conditions, along with a preceding prolonged period of northward interplanetary magnetic field, allow a detailed study of the spatial and the temporal evolution of the ionospheric response to magnetic reconnection. The flux tube footprint is tracked for half an hour across six hours of local time in the auroral zone, from magnetic local noon to dusk. The motion of the footprint of the newly reconnected flux tube is compared with the ionospheric convection velocity. Two primary intervals in the PIF's evolution have been determined. For the first half of its lifetime in the radar field of view the phase speed of the PIF is highly variable and the mean speed is nearly twice the ionospheric convection speed. For the final half of its lifetime the phase velocity becomes much less variable and slows down to the ionospheric convection velocity. The evolution of the flux tube in the magnetosphere has been studied using magnetic field, magnetopause and magnetosheath models. The data are consistent with an interval of azimuthally propagating magnetopause reconnection, in a manner consonant with a peeling of magnetic flux from the magnetopause, followed by an interval of anti-sunward convection of reconnected flux tubes.

    Key words: Magnetospheric physics (magnetosphere · ionosphere interactions; plasma convection; solar wind · magnetosphere interactions

  10. Single cell genomics indicates horizontal gene transfer and viral infections in a deep subsurface Firmicutes population

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    Jessica eLabonté


    Full Text Available A major fraction of Earth's prokaryotic biomass dwells in the deep subsurface, where cellular abundances per volume of sample are lower, metabolism is slower, and generation times are longer than those in surface terrestrial and marine environments. How these conditions impact biotic interactions and evolutionary processes is largely unknown. Here we employed single cell genomics to analyze cell-to-cell genome content variability and signatures of horizontal gene transfer (HGT and viral infections in five cells of Candidatus Desulforudis audaxviator, which were collected from a three km-deep fracture water in the 2.9 Ga-old Witwatersrand Basin of South Africa. Between 0 and 32 % of genes recovered from single cells were not present in the original, metagenomic assembly of Desulforudis, which was obtained from a neighboring subsurface fracture. We found a transposable prophage, a retron, multiple clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPRs and restriction-modification systems, and an unusually high frequency of transposases in the analyzed single cell genomes. This indicates that recombination, HGT and viral infections are prevalent evolutionary events in the studied population of microorganisms inhabiting a highly stable deep subsurface environment.

  11. Think laterally: horizontal gene transfer from symbiotic microbes may extend the phenotype of marine sessile hosts

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    Sandie M Degnan


    Full Text Available Since the origin of the animal kingdom, marine animals have lived in association with viruses, prokaryotes and unicellular eukaryotes, often as symbionts. This long and continuous interaction has provided ample opportunity not only for the evolution of intimate interactions such as sharing of metabolic pathways, but also for horizontal gene transfer (HGT of non-metazoan genes into metazoan genomes. The number of demonstrated cases of inter-kingdom HGT is currently small, such that it is not yet widely appreciated as a significant player in animal evolution. Sessile marine invertebrates that vertically inherit bacterial symbionts, that have no dedicated germ line, or that bud or excise pluripotent somatic cells during their life history may be particularly receptive to HGT from their symbionts. Closer scrutiny of the growing number of genomes being accrued for these animals may thus reveal HGT as a regular source of novel variation that can function to extend the host phenotype metabolically, morphologically or even behaviourally. Taxonomic identification of symbionts will help to address the intriguing question of whether past HGT events may constrain contemporary symbioses.

  12. Horizontal gene transfer of epigenetic machinery and evolution of parasitism in the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum and other apicomplexans. (United States)

    Kishore, Sandeep P; Stiller, John W; Deitsch, Kirk W


    The acquisition of complex transcriptional regulatory abilities and epigenetic machinery facilitated the transition of the ancestor of apicomplexans from a free-living organism to an obligate parasite. The ability to control sophisticated gene expression patterns enabled these ancient organisms to evolve several differentiated forms, invade multiple hosts and evade host immunity. How these abilities were acquired remains an outstanding question in protistan biology. In this work, we study SET domain bearing genes that are implicated in mediating immune evasion, invasion and cytoadhesion pathways of modern apicomplexans, including malaria parasites. We provide the first conclusive evidence of a horizontal gene transfer of a Histone H4 Lysine 20 (H4K20) modifier, Set8, from an animal host to the ancestor of apicomplexans. Set8 is known to contribute to the coordinated expression of genes involved in immune evasion in modern apicomplexans. We also show the likely transfer of a H3K36 methyltransferase (Ashr3 from plants), possibly derived from algal endosymbionts. These transfers appear to date to the transition from free-living organisms to parasitism and coincide with the proposed horizontal acquisition of cytoadhesion domains, the O-glycosyltransferase that modifies these domains, and the primary family of transcription factors found in apicomplexan parasites. Notably, phylogenetic support for these conclusions is robust and the genes clearly are dissimilar to SET sequences found in the closely related parasite Perkinsus marinus, and in ciliates, the nearest free-living organisms with complete genome sequences available. Animal and plant sources of epigenetic machinery provide new insights into the evolution of parasitism in apicomplexans. Along with the horizontal transfer of cytoadhesive domains, O-linked glycosylation and key transcription factors, the acquisition of SET domain methyltransferases marks a key transitional event in the evolution to parasitism in

  13. Incorporation of a horizontally transferred gene into an operon during cnidarian evolution.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catherine E Dana

    Full Text Available Genome sequencing has revealed examples of horizontally transferred genes, but we still know little about how such genes are incorporated into their host genomes. We have previously reported the identification of a gene (flp that appears to have entered the Hydra genome through horizontal transfer. Here we provide additional evidence in support of our original hypothesis that the transfer was from a unicellular organism, and we show that the transfer occurred in an ancestor of two medusozoan cnidarian species. In addition we show that the gene is part of a bicistronic operon in the Hydra genome. These findings identify a new animal phylum in which trans-spliced leader addition has led to the formation of operons, and define the requirements for evolution of an operon in Hydra. The identification of operons in Hydra also provides a tool that can be exploited in the construction of transgenic Hydra strains.

  14. Genome-wide identification of horizontal gene transfer in Fusarium verticillioides (United States)

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT), the exchange and stable integration of genetic material between different lineages, breaks species boundaries and generates new biological diversity. In eukaryotes, despite potential barriers, like the nuclear envelope and multicellularity, HGT may be facilitated by t...

  15. Bacteriophage WO Can Mediate Horizontal Gene Transfer in Endosymbiotic Wolbachia Genomes (United States)

    Wang, Guan H.; Sun, Bao F.; Xiong, Tuan L.; Wang, Yan K.; Murfin, Kristen E.; Xiao, Jin H.; Huang, Da W.


    Phage-mediated horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is common in free-living bacteria, and many transferred genes can play a significant role in their new bacterial hosts. However, there are few reports concerning phage-mediated HGT in endosymbionts (obligate intracellular bacteria within animal or plant hosts), such as Wolbachia. The Wolbachia-infecting temperate phage WO can actively shift among Wolbachia genomes and has the potential to mediate HGT between Wolbachia strains. In the present study, we extend previous findings by validating that the phage WO can mediate transfer of non-phage genes. To do so, we utilized bioinformatic, phylogenetic, and molecular analyses based on all sequenced Wolbachia and phage WO genomes. Our results show that the phage WO can mediate HGT between Wolbachia strains, regardless of whether the transferred genes originate from Wolbachia or other unrelated bacteria. PMID:27965627

  16. Intrapleural 'outside-in' gene therapy: therapeutics for organs of the chest via gene transfer to the pleura. (United States)

    Heguy, Adriana; Crystal, Ronald G


    The pleural space is an attractive site for using viral vectors to deliver gene products to the lung parenchyma, other thoracic structures and the systemic circulation. The advantages of intrapleural gene transfer using viral vectors include: (i) easy accessibility; (ii) large surface area; (iii) ability to provide high concentrations of secreted gene products to chest structures; (iv) low risk of detrimental effects of possible vector-induced inflammation compared with intravascular delivery; and (v) because it is local, lower vector doses can be used to deliver therapeutic genes to thoracic structures than less efficient systemic routes. Examples of pleural gene transfer include the use of adenovirus vectors to treat mesothelioma by transiently expressing genes that encode toxic proteins, immunomodulatory molecules or anti-angiogenesis factors. Intrapleural delivery of adeno-associated viral vectors represents an efficient strategy to treat alpha1-antitrypsin (alpha1AT) deficiency, achieving high lung and systemic therapeutic levels of alpha1AT. Intrapleural delivery of gene transfer vectors holds promise for the treatment of diseases requiring transient, localized gene expression, as well as sustained expression of genes to correct hereditary disorders requiring localized or systemic expression of the therapeutic protein.

  17. Evolutionary change and phylogenetic relationships in light of horizontal gene transfer

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Luis Boto


    Horizontal gene transfer has, over the past 25 years, become a part of evolutionary thinking. In the present paper I discuss horizontal gene transfer (HGT) in relation to contingency, natural selection, evolutionary change speed and the Tree-of-Life endeavour, with the aim of contributing to the understanding of the role of HGT in evolutionary processes. In addition, the challenges that HGT imposes on the current view of evolution are emphasized.

  18. Events

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Igor V. Karyakin


    Full Text Available The 9th ARRCN Symposium 2015 was held during 21st–25th October 2015 at the Novotel Hotel, Chumphon, Thailand, one of the most favored travel destinations in Asia. The 10th ARRCN Symposium 2017 will be held during October 2017 in the Davao, Philippines. International Symposium on the Montagu's Harrier (Circus pygargus «The Montagu's Harrier in Europe. Status. Threats. Protection», organized by the environmental organization «Landesbund für Vogelschutz in Bayern e.V.» (LBV was held on November 20-22, 2015 in Germany. The location of this event was the city of Wurzburg in Bavaria.

  19. Role of horizontal gene transfer as a control on the coevolution of ribosomal proteins and the genetic code

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Woese, Carl R.; Goldenfeld, Nigel; Luthey-Schulten, Zaida


    Our main goal is to develop the conceptual and computational tools necessary to understand the evolution of the universal processes of translation and replication and to identify events of horizontal gene transfer that occurred within the components. We will attempt to uncover the major evolutionary transitions that accompanied the development of protein synthesis by the ribosome and associated components of the translation apparatus. Our project goes beyond standard genomic approaches to explore homologs that are represented at both the structure and sequence level. Accordingly, use of structural phylogenetic analysis allows us to probe further back into deep evolutionary time than competing approaches, permitting greater resolution of primitive folds and structures. Specifically, our work focuses on the elements of translation, ranging from the emergence of the canonical genetic code to the evolution of specific protein folds, mediated by the predominance of horizontal gene transfer in early life. A unique element of this study is the explicit accounting for the impact of phenotype selection on translation, through a coevolutionary control mechanism. Our work contributes to DOE mission objectives through: (1) sophisticated computer simulation of protein dynamics and evolution, and the further refinement of techniques for structural phylogeny, which complement sequence information, leading to improved annotation of genomic databases; (2) development of evolutionary approaches to exploring cellular function and machinery in an integrated way; and (3) documentation of the phenotype interaction with translation over evolutionary time, reflecting the system response to changing selection pressures through horizontal gene transfer.

  20. DNA-mediated gene transfer in plant protoplasts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    U, Zang Kual; Riu, Key Zung; So, In Sup; Hong, Kyung Ae [Cheju National University, Cheju (Korea, Republic of)


    The neomycin phosphotransferase II gene(NPT-II) was introduced into geranium (Pelargonium zonale hybrids) protoplasts by using PEG or electroporation method. The presence of the introduced DNA in the protoplasts and the expressions of the gene in the transformed cells were examined. The presence of the NPT-II DNA in the protoplasts were detected by polymerase chain reaction. The expressions of NPT-II gene in the transformed cells were confirmed by the NPT-II assay. (author)

  1. Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1)-derived recombinant vectors for gene transfer and gene therapy. (United States)

    Marconi, Peggy; Fraefel, Cornel; Epstein, Alberto L


    Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1 ) is a human pathogen whose lifestyle is based on a long-term dual interaction with the infected host, being able to establish both lytic and latent infections. The virus genome is a 153-kilobase pair (kbp) double-stranded DNA molecule encoding more than 80 genes. The interest of HSV-1 as gene transfer vector stems from its ability to infect many different cell types, both quiescent and proliferating cells, the very high packaging capacity of the virus capsid, the outstanding neurotropic adaptations that this virus has evolved, and the fact that it never integrates into the cellular chromosomes, thus avoiding the risk of insertional mutagenesis. Two types of vectors can be derived from HSV-1, recombinant vectors and amplicon vectors, and different methodologies have been developed to prepare large stocks of each type of vector. This chapter summarizes the approach most commonly used to prepare recombinant HSV-1 vectors through homologous recombination, either in eukaryotic cells or in bacteria.

  2. Design of retrovirus vectors for transfer and expression of the human. beta. -globin gene

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Miller, A.D.; Bender, M.A.; Harris, E.A.S.; Kaleko, M.; Gelinas, R.E.


    Regulated expression of the human ..beta..-globin gene has been demonstrated in cultured murine erythroleukemia cells and in mice after retrovirus-mediated gene transfer. However, the low titer of recombinant viruses described to date results in relatively inefficient gene transfer, which limits their usefulness for animal studies and for potential gene therapy in humans for diseases involving defective ..beta..-globin genes. The authors found regions that interfered with virus production within intron 2 of the ..beta..-globin gene and on both sides of the gene. The flanking regions could be removed, but intron 2 was required for ..beta..-globin expression. Inclusion of ..beta..-globin introns necessitates an antisense orientation of the gene within the retrovirus vector. However, they found no effect of the antisense ..beta..-globin transcription on virus production. A region downstream of the ..beta..-globin gene that stimulates expression of the gene in transgenic mice was included in the viruses without detrimental effects on virus titer. Virus titers of over 10/sup 6/ CFU/ml were obtained with the final vector design, which retained the ability to direct regulated expression of human ..beta..-globin in murine erythroleukemia cells. The vector also allowed transfer and expression of the human ..beta..-globin gene in hematopoietic cells (CFU-S cells) in mice.

  3. Evolution of GHF5 endoglucanase gene structure in plant-parasitic nematodes: no evidence for an early domain shuffling event

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gheysen Godelieve


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Endo-1,4-beta-glucanases or cellulases from the glycosyl hydrolase family 5 (GHF5 have been found in numerous bacteria and fungi, and recently also in higher eukaryotes, particularly in plant-parasitic nematodes (PPN. The origin of these genes has been attributed to horizontal gene transfer from bacteria, although there still is a lot of uncertainty about the origin and structure of the ancestral GHF5 PPN endoglucanase. It is not clear whether this ancestral endoglucanase consisted of the whole gene cassette, containing a catalytic domain and a carbohydrate-binding module (CBM, type 2 in PPN and bacteria or only of the catalytic domain while the CBM2 was retrieved by domain shuffling later in evolution. Previous studies on the evolution of these genes have focused primarily on data of sedentary nematodes, while in this study, extra data from migratory nematodes were included. Results Two new endoglucanases from the migratory nematodes Pratylenchus coffeae and Ditylenchus africanus were included in this study. The latter one is the first gene isolated from a PPN of a different superfamily (Sphaerularioidea; all previously known nematode endoglucanases belong to the superfamily Tylenchoidea (order Rhabditida. Phylogenetic analyses were conducted with the PPN GHF5 endoglucanases and homologous endoglucanases from bacterial and other eukaryotic lineages such as beetles, fungi and plants. No statistical incongruence between the phylogenetic trees deduced from the catalytic domain and the CBM2 was found, which could suggest that both domains have evolved together. Furthermore, based on gene structure data, we inferred a model for the evolution of the GHF5 endoglucanase gene structure in plant-parasitic nematodes. Our data confirm a close relationship between Pratylenchus spp. and the root knot nematodes, while some Radopholus similis endoglucanases are more similar to cyst nematode genes. Conclusion We conclude that the ancestral

  4. Exploration of horizontal gene transfer between transplastomic tobacco and plant-associated bacteria. (United States)

    Demanèche, Sandrine; Monier, Jean-Michel; Dugat-Bony, Eric; Simonet, Pascal


    The likelihood of gene transfer from transgenic plants to bacteria is dependent on the transgene copy number and on the presence of homologous sequences for recombination. The large number of chloroplast genomes in a plant cell as well as the prokaryotic origin of the transgene may thus significantly increase the likelihood of gene transfer from transplastomic plants to bacteria. In order to assess the probability of such a transfer, bacterial isolates, screened for their ability to colonize decaying tobacco plant tissue and possessing DNA sequence similarity to the chloroplastic genes accD and rbcL flanking the transgene (aadA), were tested for their ability to take up extracellular DNA (broad host-range pBBR1MCS-3-derived plasmid, transplastomic plant DNA and PCR products containing the genes accD-aadA-rbcL) by natural or electrotransformation. The results showed that among the 16 bacterial isolates tested, six were able to accept foreign DNA and acquire the spectinomycin resistance conferred by the aadA gene on plasmid, but none of them managed to integrate transgenic DNA in their chromosome. Our results provide no indication that the theoretical gene transfer-enhancing properties of transplastomic plants cause horizontal gene transfer at rates above those found in other studies with nuclear transgenes.

  5. Wide Area Protection Scheme Preventing Cascading Events Caused by Load Flow Transferring

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Liu, Zhou; Chen, Zhe; Sun, Haishun;


    Load flow transferring after an initial contingency is regarded as one of the main reasons of causing unexpected cascading trips. A multi agent system (MAS) based wide area protection strategy is proposed in this paper to predict the load flow transferring from the point of view of impedance relays...

  6. Closely linked H2B genes in the marine copepod, Tigriopus californicus indicate a recent gene duplication or gene conversion event. (United States)

    Brown, D; Cook, A; Wagner, M; Wells, D


    Two nonallelic histone gene clusters were characterized in the marine copepod, Tigriopus californicus. The DNA sequence of one of the clusters reveals six genes in the contiguous arrangement of H2B, H1, H3, H4, H2B and H2A. The order of genes within the second cluster is H3, H4, H2B and H2A. There is no evidence for the presence of an H1 gene in this cluster. Comparison of the three copepod H2B genes reveals a high degree of similarity between the 5' upstream regions and between the amino terminal halves of the two H2B genes found within the same cluster. From these data we infer that gene duplication and/or gene conversion events occurred within this cluster in the recent past.

  7. Molecular characterization of cadmium resistance in Streptococcus thermophilus strain 4134: an example of lateral gene transfer. (United States)

    Schirawski, Jan; Hagens, Werner; Fitzgerald, Gerald F; Van Sinderen, Douwe


    Two genes (cadC(St) and cadA(St) [subscript St represents Streptococcus thermophilus]), located on the chromosome of S. thermophilus 4134, were shown to constitute a cadmium/zinc resistance cassette. The genes seem to be organized in an operon, and their transcription is cadmium dependent in vivo. The proposed product of the cadA open reading frame (CadA(St)) is highly similar to P-type cadmium efflux ATPases, whereas the predicted protein encoded by cadC(St) (CadC(St)) shows high similarity to ArsR-type regulatory proteins. The observed homologies and G+C content of this cassette and surrounding regions suggest that this DNA was derived from Lactococcus lactis and may have been introduced relatively recently into the S. thermophilus 4134 genome by a lateral gene transfer event. The complete cassette confers cadmium and zinc resistance to both S. thermophilus and L. lactis, but expression of cadA(St) alone is sufficient to give resistance. By using electrophoretic mobility shift assays it was shown that the CadC(St) protein is a DNA binding protein that binds specifically to its own promoter region, possibly to two copies of an inverted repeat, and that this CadC(St)-DNA interaction is lost in the presence of cadmium. Using lacZ fusion constructs it was shown that the cadmium-dependent expression of CadA(St) is mediated by the negative regulator CadC(St). A model for the regulation of the expression of cadmium resistance in S. thermophilus is discussed.

  8. Phylogenetic analysis of the incidence of lux gene horizontal transfer in Vibrionaceae. (United States)

    Urbanczyk, Henryk; Ast, Jennifer C; Kaeding, Allison J; Oliver, James D; Dunlap, Paul V


    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is thought to occur frequently in bacteria in nature and to play an important role in bacterial evolution, contributing to the formation of new species. To gain insight into the frequency of HGT in Vibrionaceae and its possible impact on speciation, we assessed the incidence of interspecies transfer of the lux genes (luxCDABEG), which encode proteins involved in luminescence, a distinctive phenotype. Three hundred three luminous strains, most of which were recently isolated from nature and which represent 11 Aliivibrio, Photobacterium, and Vibrio species, were screened for incongruence of phylogenies based on a representative housekeeping gene (gyrB or pyrH) and a representative lux gene (luxA). Strains exhibiting incongruence were then subjected to detailed phylogenetic analysis of horizontal transfer by using multiple housekeeping genes (gyrB, recA, and pyrH) and multiple lux genes (luxCDABEG). In nearly all cases, housekeeping gene and lux gene phylogenies were congruent, and there was no instance in which the lux genes of one luminous species had replaced the lux genes of another luminous species. Therefore, the lux genes are predominantly vertically inherited in Vibrionaceae. The few exceptions to this pattern of congruence were as follows: (i) the lux genes of the only known luminous strain of Vibrio vulnificus, VVL1 (ATCC 43382), were evolutionarily closely related to the lux genes of Vibrio harveyi; (ii) the lux genes of two luminous strains of Vibrio chagasii, 21N-12 and SB-52, were closely related to those of V. harveyi and Vibrio splendidus, respectively; (iii) the lux genes of a luminous strain of Photobacterium damselae, BT-6, were closely related to the lux genes of the lux-rib(2) operon of Photobacterium leiognathi; and (iv) a strain of the luminous bacterium Photobacterium mandapamensis was found to be merodiploid for the lux genes, and the second set of lux genes was closely related to the lux genes of the lux-rib(2

  9. Transcriptional regulation of pWW0 transfer genes in Pseudomonas putida KT2440

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lambertsen, L.M.; Molin, Søren; Kroer, N.;


    The conjugative IncP-9 plasmid pWW0 (TOL) carries transfer genes, many of whose functions can be predicted from sequence similarities to the well-studied IncW and IncP-1 plasmids, and that are clustered with the replication and maintenance genes of the plasmid core. In this study we show that the...

  10. Lateral transfer of eukaryotic ribosomal RNA genes: an emerging concern for molecular ecology of microbial eukaryotes. (United States)

    Yabuki, Akinori; Toyofuku, Takashi; Takishita, Kiyotaka


    Ribosomal RNA (rRNA) genes are widely utilized in depicting organismal diversity and distribution in a wide range of environments. Although a few cases of lateral transfer of rRNA genes between closely related prokaryotes have been reported, it remains to be reported from eukaryotes. Here, we report the first case of lateral transfer of eukaryotic rRNA genes. Two distinct sequences of the 18S rRNA gene were detected from a clonal culture of the stramenopile, Ciliophrys infusionum. One was clearly derived from Ciliophrys, but the other gene originated from a perkinsid alveolate. Genome-walking analyses revealed that this alveolate-type rRNA gene is immediately adjacent to two protein-coding genes (ubc12 and usp39), and the origin of both genes was shown to be a stramenopile (that is, Ciliophrys) in our phylogenetic analyses. These findings indicate that the alveolate-type rRNA gene is encoded on the Ciliophrys genome and that eukaryotic rRNA genes can be transferred laterally.

  11. Targeted gene transfer into rat facial muscles by nanosecond pulsed laser-induced stress waves (United States)

    Kurita, Akihiro; Matsunobu, Takeshi; Satoh, Yasushi; Ando, Takahiro; Sato, Shunichi; Obara, Minoru; Shiotani, Akihiro


    We investigate the feasibility of using nanosecond pulsed laser-induced stress waves (LISWs) for gene transfer into rat facial muscles. LISWs are generated by irradiating a black natural rubber disk placed on the target tissue with nanosecond pulsed laser light from the second harmonics (532 nm) of a Q-switched Nd:YAG laser, which is widely used in head and neck surgery and proven to be safe. After injection of plasmid deoxyribose nucleic acid (DNA) coding for Lac Z into rat facial muscles, pulsed laser is used to irradiate the laser target on the skin surface without incision or exposure of muscles. Lac Z expression is detected by X-gal staining of excised rat facial skin and muscles. Strong Lac Z expression is observed seven days after gene transfer, and sustained for up to 14 days. Gene transfer is achieved in facial muscles several millimeters deep from the surface. Gene expression is localized to the tissue exposed to LISWs. No tissue damage from LISWs is observed. LISW is a promising nonviral target gene transfer method because of its high spatial controllability, easy applicability, and minimal invasiveness. Gene transfer using LISW to produce therapeutic proteins such as growth factors could be used to treat nerve injury and paralysis.


    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Ju Dianwen; Cao Xuetao; Yu Yizhi; Tao Qun; Wang Baomei; Wan Tao


    In the present report, antitumor effect of combined transfer of suicide gene and cytokine gene was studied.Adenovirus engineered to express E. Coli. Cytosine deaminase (AdCD) and/or adenovirus engineered toexpress murine granulocyte-macrophage colonystimulating factor (AdGMCSF) were used for the treatment of leukemia-bearing mice. The mice were inoculated s.c. With FBL-3 erythroleukemia cells and 3days later received intratumoral injection of AdCD in the presence or absence of AdGMCSF followed by intraperitoneal 5-fluorocytosine (5FC) treatment. The results demonstrated that mice received combined therapy of AdCD/5FC and AdGMCSF developed tumors most slowly and survived much longer when compared with mice treated with AdCD/5FC alone, AdGMCSF alone, AdlacZ/5FC or PBS. Combined transfer of CD gene and GM-CSF gene achieved higher specific CTL activity than control therapies. Pathological examination illustrated that the tumor mass showed obvious necrosis and inflammatory cell infiltration in mice after combined therapy. The results demonstrated that combined transfer of suicide gene and cytokine gene could synergistically inhibit the growth of leukemia in mice and induce antitumor immunity of the host. The combination therapy might be a potential approach for cancer gene therapy.

  13. Field Supervisory Test of DREB-Transgenic Populus: Salt Tolerance, Long-Term Gene Stability and Horizontal Gene Transfer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nan Lu


    Full Text Available Improving saline resistance may be useful for reducing environmental susceptibility and improving yields in poplar plantations. However, the instability of genetically engineered traits and gene transfer reduce their usefulness and commercial value. To investigate whether the foreign gene is still present in the genome of receptor plants after seven years (i.e., long-term foreign gene stability and gene transfer, we randomly analyzed ten field-grown transgenic hybrid Populus ((Populus tomentosa × Populus bolleana × P. tomentosa carrying the DREB1 gene from Atriplex hortensis. The results of PCR and tissue culture experiments showed that AhDREB1 was present in the transgenic trees and was still expressed. However, the transcriptional expression level had decreased compared with that four years earlier. The PCR results also indicated no foreign gene in the genomic DNA of microorganisms in the soil near the transgenic poplars, indicating that no significant gene transfer had occurred from the transgenic poplars to the microorganisms at seven years after planting.

  14. [Advances in research on radioiodine therapy of carcinoma mediated by gene transfer technology]. (United States)

    Mu, Da; Kuang, Anren


    Radioiodine therapy of carcinoma could be mediated by transferring the genes which participate in the process of iodine metabolism in thyroid. The correlative genes are sodium/iodine symporter gene, thyroid peroxidase gene and the specific thyroid transcription factors, and others. The objective gene can specifically express in carcinoma by inserting the tissue-specific promoter/enhancer upstream of them, so radioiodine could be used to treat varied carcinomas. The radioiodine uptake in carcinoma cells was obviously increased and the radioiodine therapy of carcinoma was effective after those genes had expressed in carcinoma cells. The main problem was that the effective half-time of radioiodine in cells was too short to produce the ideal effect of radioiodine therapy. Moreover, 211At and 188Re could be transferred by sodium/iodine symporter and they could be used to treat the carcinoma that is capable of radioiodine uptake.

  15. Taking up an event: Brand image transfer during the FIFA World Cup

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Neijens, P.; Smit, E.; Moorman, M.


    A real-life study (N = 1299) into brand images during and after the 2006 FIFA World Cup football tournament showed that the event was a good platform for the creation of brand images through ‘take-up’ advertising in which the brand was associated with the event. Exposure level and involvement with t

  16. Taking up an event: Brand image transfer during the FIFA World Cup

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Neijens, P.; Smit, E.; Moorman, M.


    A real-life study (N = 1299) into brand images during and after the 2006 FIFA World Cup football tournament showed that the event was a good platform for the creation of brand images through ‘take-up’ advertising in which the brand was associated with the event. Exposure level and involvement with t

  17. The Agricultural Antibiotic Carbadox Induces Phage-mediated Gene Transfer in Salmonella

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bradley L. Bearson


    Full Text Available Antibiotics are used for disease therapeutic or preventative effects in humans and animals, as well as for enhanced feed conversion efficiency in livestock. Antibiotics can also cause undesirable effects in microbial populations, including selection for antibiotic resistance, enhanced pathogen invasion, and stimulation of horizontal gene transfer. Carbadox is a veterinary antibiotic used in the U.S. during the starter phase of swine production for improved feed efficiency and control of swine dysentery and bacterial swine enteritis. Carbadox has been shown in vitro to induce phage-encoded Shiga toxin in Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli and a phage-like element transferring antibiotic resistance genes in Brachyspira hyodysenteriae, but the effect of carbadox on prophages in other bacteria is unknown. This study examined carbadox exposure on prophage induction and genetic transfer in Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium, a human foodborne pathogen that frequently colonizes swine without causing disease. S. Typhimurium LT2 exposed to carbadox induced prophage production, resulting in bacterial cell lysis and release of virions that were visible by electron microscopy. Carbadox induction of phage-mediated gene transfer was confirmed by monitoring the transduction of a sodCIII::neo cassette in the Fels-1 prophage from LT2 to a recipient Salmonella strain. Furthermore, carbadox frequently induced generalized transducing phages in multidrug-resistant phage type DT104 and DT120 isolates, resulting in the transfer of chromosomal and plasmid DNA that included antibiotic resistance genes. Our research indicates that exposure of Salmonella to carbadox induces prophages that can transfer virulence and antibiotic resistance genes to susceptible bacterial hosts. Carbadox-induced, phage-mediated gene transfer could serve as a contributing factor in bacterial evolution during animal production, with prophages being a reservoir for bacterial fitness

  18. Gene conversion-like events in the diversification of human rearranged IGHV3-23*01 gene sequences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bhargavi eDuvvuri


    Full Text Available Gene conversion (GCV as a mechanism of immunoglobulin diversification is well established in a few species. However, definitive evidence of GCV-like events in human immunoglobulin genes is scarce. GCV is mediated by activation-induced cytidine deaminase (AID. The lack of evidence of GCV in human rearranged immunoglobulin gene sequences is puzzling given the presence of highly similar germline donors and all the enzymatic machinery required for GCV. In this study, we undertook a computational analysis of rearranged IGHV3-23*01 gene sequences from common variable immunodeficiency (CVID patients and healthy individuals to survey ‘GCV-like’ activities. Our search identified strong evidence of GCV-like patterns. Germline VH sequences were identified as potential donors for clustered mutations in rearranged IGHV3-23*01 gene sequences. We identified minimum and maximum sequence identities between donor and recipient sequences that can serve as targets for GCV and our findings are consistent with those reported in literature. We observed that GCV-like tracts are flanked by activation-induced cytidine deaminase (AID hotspot motifs. Structural modeling of IGHV3-23*01 gene sequence revealed that hypermutable bases flanking GCV-like tracts, are in the single stranded DNA (ssDNA of stable stem-loop structures (SLSs. SsDNA is inherently fragile and also an optimal target for AID. We speculate that GCV could have been initiated by the targeting of hypermutable bases in ssDNA state in stable SLSs, plausibly by AID. We have observed that the frequency of GCV-like events is significantly higher in rearranged IGHV323-*01 sequences from healthy individuals compared to that of CVID patients. GCV, unlike SHM, can result in multiple base substitutions that can alter many amino acids. The extensive changes in antibody affinity by GCV-like events, as identified in this study would be instrumental in protecting humans against pathogens that diversify their genome by

  19. Pinda: a web service for detection and analysis of intraspecies gene duplication events. (United States)

    Kontopoulos, Dimitrios-Georgios; Glykos, Nicholas M


    We present Pinda, a Web service for the detection and analysis of possible duplications of a given protein or DNA sequence within a source species. Pinda fully automates the whole gene duplication detection procedure, from performing the initial similarity searches, to generating the multiple sequence alignments and the corresponding phylogenetic trees, to bootstrapping the trees and producing a Z-score-based list of duplication candidates for the input sequence. Pinda has been cross-validated using an extensive set of known and bibliographically characterized duplication events. The service facilitates the automatic and dependable identification of gene duplication events, using some of the most successful bioinformatics software to perform an extensive analysis protocol. Pinda will prove of use for the analysis of newly discovered genes and proteins, thus also assisting the study of recently sequenced genomes. The service's location is The source code is freely available via

  20. Fundamental study on gene transfer utilizing magnetic force and jet injector

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hasegawa, T.; Nakagami, H.; Akiyama, Y.; Nishjima, S. [Osaka University, Osaka (Japan)


    Recently, DNA vaccination is attracting attentions as a new therapeutic method for lifestyle diseases and autoimmune diseases. However, its clinical applications are limited because a safe and efficient gene transfer method has not been established yet. In this study, a new method of gene transfer was proposed which utilizes the jet injection and the magnetic transfection. The jet injection is a method to inject medical liquid by momentary high pressure without needle. The injected liquid diffuses in the bio tissue and the endocytosis is considered to be improved by the diffusion. The magnetic transfection is a method to deliver the conjugates of plasmid DNA and magnetic particles to the desired site by external magnetic field. It is expected that jet injection of the conjugates causes slight membrane disruptions and the traction of the conjugates by magnetic field induces the efficient gene transfer. In conclusion, the possibility of improvement of the gene expression by the combination of jet injection and magnetic transfection was confirmed.

  1. Cellular automata-based artificial life system of horizontal gene transfer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ji-xin Liu


    Full Text Available Mutation and natural selection is the core of Darwin's idea about evolution. Many algorithms and models are based on this idea. However, in the evolution of prokaryotes, more and more researches have indicated that horizontal gene transfer (HGT would be much more important and universal than the authors had imagined. Owing to this mechanism, the prokaryotes not only become adaptable in nearly any environment on Earth, but also form a global genetic bank and a super communication network with all the genes of the prokaryotic world. Under this background, they present a novel cellular automata model general gene transfer to simulate and study the vertical gene transfer and HGT in the prokaryotes. At the same time, they use Schrodinger's life theory to formulate some evaluation indices and to discuss the intelligence and cognition of prokaryotes which is derived from HGT.

  2. Gene loss and horizontal gene transfer contributed to the genome evolution of the extreme acidophile Ferrovum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sophie Roxana Ullrich


    Full Text Available Acid mine drainage (AMD, associated with active and abandoned mining sites, is a habitat for acidophilic microorganisms that gain energy from the oxidation of reduced sulfur compounds and ferrous iron and that thrive at pH below 4. Members of the recently proposed genus Ferrovum are the first acidophilic iron oxidizers to be described within the Betaproteobacteria. Although they have been detected as typical community members in AMD habitats worldwide, knowledge of their phylogenetic and metabolic diversity is scarce. Genomics approaches appear to be most promising in addressing this lacuna since isolation and cultivation of Ferrovum has proven to be extremely difficult and has so far only been successful for the designated type strain Ferrovum myxofaciens P3G. In this study, the genomes of two novel strains of Ferrovum (PN-J185 and Z-31 derived from water samples of a mine water treatment plant were sequenced. These genomes were compared with those of Ferrovum sp. JA12 that also originated from the mine water treatment plant, and of the type strain (P3G. Phylogenomic scrutiny suggests that the four strains represent three Ferrovum species that cluster in two groups (1 and 2. Comprehensive analysis of their predicted metabolic pathways revealed that these groups harbor characteristic metabolic profiles, notably with respect to motility, chemotaxis, nitrogen metabolism, biofilm formation and their potential strategies to cope with the acidic environment. For example, while the F. myxofaciens strains (group 1 appear to be motile and diazotrophic, the non-motile group 2 strains have the predicted potential to use a greater variety of fixed nitrogen sources. Furthermore, analysis of their genome synteny provides first insights into their genome evolution, suggesting that horizontal gene transfer and genome reduction in the group 2 strains by loss of genes encoding complete metabolic pathways or physiological features contributed to the observed

  3. CD133-targeted gene transfer into long-term repopulating hematopoietic stem cells. (United States)

    Brendel, Christian; Goebel, Benjamin; Daniela, Abriss; Brugman, Martijn; Kneissl, Sabrina; Schwäble, Joachim; Kaufmann, Kerstin B; Müller-Kuller, Uta; Kunkel, Hana; Chen-Wichmann, Linping; Abel, Tobias; Serve, Hubert; Bystrykh, Leonid; Buchholz, Christian J; Grez, Manuel


    Gene therapy for hematological disorders relies on the genetic modification of CD34(+) cells, a heterogeneous cell population containing about 0.01% long-term repopulating cells. Here, we show that the lentiviral vector CD133-LV, which uses a surface marker on human primitive hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) as entry receptor, transfers genes preferentially into cells with high engraftment capability. Transduction of unstimulated CD34(+) cells with CD133-LV resulted in gene marking of cells with competitive proliferative advantage in vitro and in immunodeficient mice. The CD133-LV-transduced population contained significantly more cells with repopulating capacity than cells transduced with vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV)-LV, a lentiviral vector pseudotyped with the vesicular stomatitis virus G protein. Upon transfer of a barcode library, CD133-LV-transduced cells sustained gene marking in vivo for a prolonged period of time with a 6.7-fold higher recovery of barcodes compared to transduced control cells. Moreover, CD133-LV-transduced cells were capable of repopulating secondary recipients. Lastly, we show that this targeting strategy can be used for transfer of a therapeutic gene into CD34(+) cells obtained from patients suffering of X-linked chronic granulomatous disease. In conclusion, direct gene transfer into CD133(+) cells allows for sustained long-term engraftment of gene corrected cells.

  4. Gene transfer during surgical procedures with molecular surgical suture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dan Huang


    Full Text Available Over the last decades, there has been an explosion of interest in plasmid DNA for gene therapy with reports of their efficacy in the fight against cancer, vascular diseases, and inherited diseases caused by specific gene defects (Srivastava, 2003. DNA plasmids present several advantages over the use of recombinant viruses concerning their production and safety issues. Plasmid DNA vectors can be constructed easily and economically, and they are free of size constraints imposed by viral packaging, obviating the need for an infectious vector and lessening the likelihood of toxicity and immunogenicity (Davis, 1993. Plasmids have a relative low cost, long shelf life and allow repetitive administration of the therapeutic gene without generating an immune response against the delivery vector (Donnelly, 2003. Finally, plasmids can be injected directly into tissues, such as heart (Sarkar, 2002, muscle (Neumeister, 2001, Dan, 2000 and tumors (De Marco, 2003, Sasaki, 2002.

  5. Transfer of tetracycline resistance genes with aggregation substance in food-borne Enterococcus faecalis. (United States)

    Choi, Jong-Mi; Woo, Gun-Jo


    Enterococcus faecalis has the ability to conjugate with the aid of aggregation substance (AS) and inducible sex pheromones to exchange genetic elements in food matrix. To evaluate the food safety condition and the transferable factor, 250 tetracycline-resistant food-borne E. faecalis were collected in Korea. Among the isolates, a majority of tetracycline-resistant isolates (49.6 %) harbored both the tet(M) and tet(L) genes together, followed by tet(M) (19.6 %), and tet(L) (6.8 %) alone. Also, we found the combination of tet(L)/tet(M)/tet(O) or tet(M)/tet(O). We identified two tet(S) genes including the isolate carrying tet(M) + tet(S) genes. Additionally, most E. faecalis were positive for cpd and ccf (both 96.8 %) followed by cob (57.2 %). Through mating experiments, we confirmed E. faecalis possessing the Int-Tn gene and/or any AS gene successfully transferred tet genes to JH2-2 E. faecalis, whereas neither E. faecalis carrying AS genes nor the Int-Tn gene showed the conjugation. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis results supported a distinct pattern, implying transfer of genetic information. Our study revealed a high occurrence of tetracycline resistance genes in E. faecalis from various foods. The widespread dissemination of tetracycline resistance genes would be promoted to transfer tetracycline resistance genes by pheromone-mediated conjugation systems.

  6. Gene polymorphisms in APOE, NOS3, and LIPC genes may be risk factors for cardiac adverse events after primary CABG

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nollert Georg


    Full Text Available Abstract Introduction Coronary artery disease progression after primary coronary artery bypass grafting may, beside classical atherosclerosis risk factors, be depending on genetic predisposition. Methods We investigated 192 CABG patients (18% female, age: 60.9 ± 7.4 years. Clinically cardiac adverse events were defined as need for reoperation (n = 88; 46%, reintervention (n = 58; 30%, or angina (n = 89; 46%. Mean follow-up time measured 10.1 ± 5.1 years. Gene polymorphisms (ApoE, NOS3, LIPC, CETP, SERPINE-1, Prothrombin were investigated separately and combined (gene risk profile. Results Among classical risk factors, arterial hypertension and hypercholesterinemia significantly influenced CAD progression. Single ApoE, NOS3 and LIPC polymorphisms provided limited information. Patients missing the most common ApoE ε3 allele (5,2%, showed recurrent symptoms (p = 0,077 and had more frequently reintervention (p = 0,001. NOS3 a allele was associated with a significant increase for reintervention (p = 0,041 and recurrent symptoms (p = 0,042. Homozygous LIPC patients had a higher reoperation rate (p = 0.049. A gene risk profile enabled us to discriminate between faster and slower occurrence of cardiac adverse events (p = 0.0012. Conclusion Single APOE, LIPC and NOS3 polymorphisms permitted limited prognosis of cardiac adverse events in patients after CABG. Risk profile, in contrast, allowed for risk stratification.

  7. Photocatalysis with CdSe nanoparticles in confined media: mapping charge transfer events in the subpicosecond to second timescales. (United States)

    Harris, Clifton; Kamat, Prashant V


    Photoinduced charge transfer events between 3 nm diameter CdSe semiconductor nanocrystals and an electron acceptor, MV2+, have been probed in the subpicosecond-microseconds-seconds time scale by confining the reactants in an AOT/heptane reverse micelle. The probe molecule, methyl viologen (MV2+) interacts with the excited CdSe nanoparticle and quenches its emission effectively. The ultrafast electron transfer to MV2+, as monitored from the exciton bleaching recovery of CdSe and the formation of MV+* radical, is completed with an average rate constant of 2.25x10(10) s(-1). Under steady state irradiation (450 nm) the accumulation of MV+* is seen with a net quantum yield of 0.1. Mediation of the electron transfer through TiO2 nanoparticles is achieved by coupling them with the CdSe-MV2+ system within the reverse micelle. This coupling of two semiconductor nanoparticles increases the quantum yield of MV2+ reduction by a factor of 2. The dual roles of TiO2 as an electron shuttle and a rectifier are elucidated by transient absorption spectroscopy and steady state photolysis. The presence of both TiO2 and MV2+ in the reverse micelle creates a synergistic effect to enhance the electron transfer rate constant by an order of magnitude. The time-resolved events that dictate the production and stabilization of electron transfer product provide an insight into the photocatalytic systems that are potentially important in solar hydrogen production and photocatalytic remediation.

  8. Investigation of horizontal gene transfer in poplar/Amanita muscaria ectomycorrhizas. (United States)

    Zhang, Chi; Hampp, Rüdiger; Nehls, Uwe


    Fine roots of forest trees form together with certain soil fungi symbiotic structures (ectomycorrhizas), where fungal hyphae are in intimate contact with plant cells. Due to root cell degeneration, plant DNA is released and could be taken up by the fungus. The possibility that horizontal gene transfer might result in a risk for the environment should be evaluated before a massive release of genetically engineered trees into nature occurs, even though only a few convincing examples of horizontal gene transfer are known. Transgenic poplars containing a construct of the Streptomyces hygroscopicus bar gene under the control of the Cochliobolus heterostrophus GPD (glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase) promoter were generated by Agrobacterium-mediated transformation. The functionality of this construct in the ectomycorrhizal model fungus Amanita muscaria was previously verified by protoplast-based fungal transformation. 35,000 ectomycorrhizas, formed between transgenic poplars and non-transgenic A. muscaria hyphae, were isolated and transferred to selective agar plates. Putative herbicide-resistant fungal colonies were obtained after the first round of selection. However, none of these colonies survived a transfer onto fresh selection medium, nor did they contain the bar gene, indicating that no horizontal gene transfer from poplar to A. muscaria occurred during symbiosis under axenic conditions. However, since ectomycorrhizas are associated under natural conditions with viruses, bacteria and other fungi, these additional associations should be evaluated in future.

  9. Innate functions of immunoglobulin M lessen liver gene transfer with helper-dependent adenovirus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carmen Unzu

    Full Text Available The immune system poses obstacles to viral vectors, even in the first administration to preimmunized hosts. We have observed that the livers of B cell-deficient mice were more effectively transduced by a helper-dependent adenovirus serotype-5 (HDA vector than those of WT mice. This effect was T-cell independent as shown in athymic mice. Passive transfer of the serum from adenovirus-naïve WT to Rag1KO mice resulted in a reduction in gene transfer that was traced to IgM purified from serum of adenovirus-naïve mice. To ascribe the gene transfer inhibition activity to either adenoviral antigen-specific or antigen-unspecific functions of IgM, we used a monoclonal IgM antibody of unrelated specificity. Both the polyclonal and the irrelevant monoclonal IgM inhibited gene transfer by the HDA vector to either cultured hepatocellular carcinoma cells or to the liver of mice in vivo. Adsorption of polyclonal or monoclonal IgMs to viral capsids was revealed by ELISAs on adenovirus-coated plates. These observations indicate the existence of an inborn IgM mechanism deployed against a prevalent virus to reduce early post-infection viremia. In conclusion, innate IgM binding to adenovirus serotype-5 capsids restrains gene-transfer and offers a mechanism to be targeted for optimization of vector dosage in gene therapy with HDA vectors.

  10. Generation of hypoxanthine phosphoribosyltransferase gene knockout rabbits by homologous recombination and gene trapping through somatic cell nuclear transfer. (United States)

    Yin, Mingru; Jiang, Weihua; Fang, Zhenfu; Kong, Pengcheng; Xing, Fengying; Li, Yao; Chen, Xuejin; Li, Shangang


    The rabbit is a common animal model that has been employed in studies on various human disorders, and the generation of genetically modified rabbit lines is highly desirable. Female rabbits have been successfully cloned from cumulus cells, and the somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) technology is well established. The present study generated hypoxanthine phosphoribosyltransferase (HPRT) gene knockout rabbits using recombinant adeno-associated virus-mediated homologous recombination and SCNT. Gene trap strategies were employed to enhance the gene targeting rates. The male and female gene knockout fibroblast cell lines were derived by different strategies. When male HPRT knockout cells were used for SCNT, no live rabbits were obtained. However, when female HPRT(+/-) cells were used for SCNT, live, healthy rabbits were generated. The cloned HPRT(+/-) rabbits were fertile at maturity. We demonstrate a new technique to produce gene-targeted rabbits. This approach may also be used in the genetic manipulation of different genes or in other species.

  11. Recombinant adenovirus vectors with knobless fibers for targeted gene transfer

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Beusechem, VW; van Rijswijk, ALCT; van Es, HHG; Haisma, HJ; Pinedo, HM; Gerritsen, WR


    Adenoviral vector systems for gene therapy can be much improved by targeting vectors to specific cell types. This requires both the complete ablation of native adenovirus tropism and the introduction of a novel binding affinity in the viral capsid. We reasoned that these requirements could be fulfil

  12. Smelt was the likely beneficiary of an antifreeze gene laterally transferred between fishes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Graham Laurie A


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Type II antifreeze protein (AFP from the rainbow smelt, Osmerus mordax, is a calcium-dependent C-type lectin homolog, similar to the AFPs from herring and sea raven. While C-type lectins are ubiquitous, type II AFPs are only found in a few species in three widely separated branches of teleost fishes. Furthermore, several other non-homologous AFPs are found in intervening species. We have previously postulated that this sporadic distribution has resulted from lateral gene transfer. The alternative hypothesis, that the AFP evolved from a lectin present in a shared ancestor and that this gene was lost in most species, is not favored because both the exon and intron sequences are highly conserved. Results Here we have sequenced and annotated a 160 kb smelt BAC clone containing a centrally-located AFP gene along with 14 other genes. Quantitative PCR indicates that there is but a single copy of this gene within the smelt genome, which is atypical for fish AFP genes. The corresponding syntenic region has been identified and searched in a number of other species and found to be devoid of lectin or AFP sequences. Unlike the introns of the AFP gene, the intronic sequences of the flanking genes are not conserved between species. As well, the rate and pattern of mutation in the AFP gene are radically different from those seen in other smelt and herring genes. Conclusions These results provide stand-alone support for an example of lateral gene transfer between vertebrate species. They should further inform the debate about genetically modified organisms by showing that gene transfer between ‘higher’ eukaryotes can occur naturally. Analysis of the syntenic regions from several fishes strongly suggests that the smelt acquired the AFP gene from the herring.

  13. Role of bubble growth dynamics on microscale heat transfer events in microchannel flow boiling process (United States)

    Bigham, Sajjad; Moghaddam, Saeed


    For nearly two decades, the microchannel flow boiling heat transfer process has been the subject of numerous studies. A plethora of experimental studies have been conducted to decipher the underlying physics of the process, and different hypotheses have been presented to describe its microscopic details. Despite these efforts, the underlying assumptions of the existing hypothesis have remained largely unexamined. Here, using data at the microscopic level provided by a unique measurement approach, we deconstruct the boiling heat transfer process into a set of basic mechanisms and explain their role in the overall surface heat transfer. We then show how this knowledge allows to relate the bubble growth and flow dynamics to the surface heat flux.

  14. Mucus altering agents as adjuncts for nonviral gene transfer to airway epithelium. (United States)

    Ferrari, S; Kitson, C; Farley, R; Steel, R; Marriott, C; Parkins, D A; Scarpa, M; Wainwright, B; Evans, M J; Colledge, W H; Geddes, D M; Alton, E W


    Nonviral vectors have been shown to be a safe and valid alternative to recombinant viruses for gene therapy of cystic fibrosis (CF). Nevertheless, gene transfer efficiency needs to be increased before clinical efficacy is likely in man. One barrier to increased efficacy is normal airway mucus. Using an ex vivo model of sheep tracheal epithelium, we show that this barrier can, in part, be overcome by treatment with the mucolytic agents, Nacystelyn or N-acetylcysteine using either a cationic lipid or a cationic polymer as the gene transfer agent. Further, in vivo application of either Nacystelyn or the anticholinergic glycopyrrolate, both clinically used agents, resulted in increased reporter gene expression in the mouse lung, but no significant correction of the bioelectric defect in CF null mice. These results, whilst unlikely to be sufficient in themselves to achieve clinically relevant gene therapy, may be a further useful step in the attainment of this goal.

  15. Association between genes, stressful childhood events and processing bias in depression vulnerable individuals. (United States)

    Vrijsen, J N; van Oostrom, I; Arias-Vásquez, A; Franke, B; Becker, E S; Speckens, A


    The brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) genes are relevant candidates for depression. Variation in these genes is associated with stress sensitivity and depressotypic cognitive biases. The interaction between genes and stressful events is considered as an important mechanism in the development of depression. This study examined the effects of the BDNF and COMT genes on biased processing and the interaction with childhood stress in vulnerable individuals. A total of 198 remitted depressed individuals performed an n-back task with emotional facial stimuli (happy and sad). Childhood events were measured with a questionnaire. Genotype by childhood events interactions were analyzed for happy and sad expressions for BDNF (Val66Met; rs6265) and COMT (Val158Met; rs4680), individually and combined. BDNF and COMT both interacted significantly (P = 0.006 and P = 0.014, respectively) with childhood trauma on reaction time for happy faces. For both genes, Met-carriers with childhood trauma showed less positive bias for happy faces than those without childhood trauma. Val-carriers did not show a differential bias. Individuals with childhood trauma and 3 or 4 risk alleles (BDNF and COMT combined) showed less positive bias than those without childhood trauma (P = 0.011). The BDNF × COMT × childhood trauma interaction yielded a P = 0.055, but had limited power. A potential weakness is the measurement method of the childhood events, as negative bias might have affected participants' recall. Our findings endorse the association of BDNF and COMT with stress and depression and provide a possible intermediate, i.e. biased processing of positive information. Tailoring treatment to specific risk profiles based on genetic susceptibility and childhood stress could be promising. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd and International Behavioural and Neural Genetics Society.

  16. Combined targeting of adenoviruses to integrins and epidermal growth factor receptors increases gene transfer into primary glioma cells and spheroids

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grill, J; Van Beusechem, VW; Van de Valk, P; Dirven, CMF; Leonhart, A; Pherai, DS; Haisma, HJ; Pinedo, HM; Curiel, DT; Gerritsen, WR

    Adenoviral-mediated gene transfer is suboptimal in human glioma and limits in vivo gene therapy approaches. There is a need for targeted vectors able to enhance gene transfer into the tumor as well as to lower the viral load in the surrounding normal tissues. We evaluated primary human tumor samples

  17. Exploration of new perspectives and limitations in Agrobacterium mediated gene transfer technology. Progress report, [June 1, 1992-- May 31, 1994

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Marton, L.


    This report describes progress aimed at constructing gene-transfer technology for Nicotiana plumbaginifolia. Most actual effort as described herein has so far been directed at exploring new perspectives and limitations in Agrobacterium mediated gene transfer. Accomplishments are described using a core homologous gene targeting vector.

  18. Direct phylogenetic evidence for lateral transfer of elongation factor-like gene. (United States)

    Kamikawa, Ryoma; Inagaki, Yuji; Sako, Yoshihiko


    Genes encoding elongation factor-like (EFL) proteins, which show high similarity to elongation factor-1alpha (EF-1alpha), have been found in phylogenetically distantly related eukaryotes. The sporadic distribution of "EFL-containing" lineages within "EF-1alpha-containing" lineages indirectly, but strongly, suggests lateral gene transfer as the principal driving force in EFL evolution. However, one of the most critical aspects in the above hypothesis, the donor lineages in any putative cases of lateral EFL gene transfer, remained unclear. In this study, we provide direct evidence for lateral transfer of an EFL gene through the analyses of 10 diatom EFL genes. All diatom EFL homologues tightly clustered in phylogenetic analyses, suggesting acquisition of the exogenous EFL gene early in diatom evolution. Our survey additionally identified Thalassiosira pseudonana as a eukaryote bearing EF-1alpha and EFL genes and secondary EFL gene loss in Phaeodactylum tricornutum, the complete genome of which encodes only the EF-1alpha gene. Most importantly, the EFL phylogeny recovered a robust grouping of homologues from diatoms, the cercozoan Bigelowiella natans, and the foraminifer Planoglabratella opecularis, with the diatoms nested within the Bigelowiella plus Planoglabratella (Rhizaria) grouping. The particular relationships recovered are further consistent with two characteristic sequence motifs. The best explanation of our data analyses is an EFL gene transfer from a foraminifer to a diatom, the first case in which the donor-recipient relationship was clarified. Finally, based on a reverse transcriptase quantitative PCR assay and the genome information of Thalassiosira and Phaeodactylum, we propose the loss of elongation factor function in Thalassiosira EF-1alpha.

  19. Recognition events in AM symbiosis: analysis of fungal gene expression at the early appressorium stage. (United States)

    Breuninger, Magadalene; Requena, Natalia


    Arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis is induced upon a series of recognition events involving the reorganization of both plant and fungal cellular programs culminating in the formation of appressoria on the epidermal root cells. In this work we monitored for the first time the genetic changes occurring in the fungal partner during early appressorium development. We established an in vitro system of Glomus mosseae and Petroselinum crispum for studying appressorium formation and found that after 120 h first appressoria developed in the root epidermis. We have constructed a fungal subtractive suppressive library enriched in genes up-regulated at this stage. Our aim was to identify early signaling events during plant recognition leading to appressoria formation. The library contains 375 clones with an average size of 500 bp. From these, 200 clones were sequenced and most of them represent gene fragments with no known homologues (63%) and therefore putative new genes specific to the mycorrhiza symbiosis. Reverse-Northern blot and RT-PCR analyses confirmed that ca. 30% of the genes present in the library were up-regulated upon plant induction after 120 h. Among the genes with homologues in other organisms we found several genes common to other plant-microbe interactions including some genes related to Ca2+-dependent signaling. The up-regulation of these genes opens the possibility that Ca2+ plays a role in the early stages of mycorrhiza formation as it has been found in other plant-microbe interactions such as the Rhizobium symbiosis or the Magnaporthe grisea/rice pathogenic interaction.

  20. Adenovirus-mediated gene transfer to tumor cells. (United States)

    Cascalló, Manel; Alemany, Ramon


    Cell transduction in vitro is only the first step toward proving that a genetherapy vector can be useful to treat tumors. However, tumor targeting in vivo is now the milestone for gene therapy to succeed against disseminated cancer. Therefore, most valuable information is obtained from studies of vector biodistribution. Owing to the hepatotropism of adenoviral vectors, a particularly important parameter is the tumor/liver ratio. This ratio can be given at the level of gene expression if the amount of transgene expression is measured. To optimize the targeting, however, the levels of viral particles that reach the tumor compared to other organs must be studied. Most of this chapter deals with methods to quantify the virus fate in tumor-bearing animals. We present a radioactive labeling method that can be used to study biodistribution. After a small section dealing with tumor models, we describe methods to quantify different parameters related to adenovirus-mediated tumor targeting.

  1. Making memories of stressful events: a journey along epigenetic, gene transcription and signaling pathways

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johannes M.H.M. eReul


    Full Text Available Strong psychologically stressful events are known to have a long-lasting impact on behavior. The consolidation of such, largely adaptive, behavioral responses to stressful events involves changes in gene expression in limbic brain regions such as the hippocampus and amygdala. The underlying molecular mechanisms however were until recently unresolved. More than a decade ago we started to investigate the role of these hormones in signaling and epigenetic mechanisms participating in the effects of stress on gene transcription in hippocampal neurons. We discovered a novel, rapid non-genomic mechanism in which glucocorticoids via glucocorticoid receptors (GRs facilitate signaling of the ERK MAPK signaling pathway to the downstream nuclear kinases MSK1 and Elk-1 in dentate gyrus (DG granule neurons. Activation of this signaling pathway results in serine10 (S10 phosphorylation and lysine14 (K14 acetylation at histone H3 (H3S10p-K14ac, leading to the induction of the immediate early genes c-Fos and Egr-1. In addition, we found a role of the DNA methylation status of gene promoters. A series of studies showed that these molecular mechanisms play a critical role in the long-lasting consolidation of behavioral responses in the forced swim test and Morris water maze. Furthermore, an important role of GABA was found in controlling the epigenetic and gene transcriptional responses to psychological stress. Thus, psychologically stressful events evoke a long-term impact on behavior through changes in hippocampal function brought about by distinct glutamatergic and glucocorticoid-driven changes in epigenetic regulation of gene transcription which are modulated by (local GABAergic interneurons and limbic afferent inputs. These epigenetic processes may play an important role in the etiology of stress-related mental disorders such as major depressive and anxiety disorders like PTSD.

  2. Clinical and ethical implications of mitochondrial gene transfer. (United States)

    Mitalipov, Shoukhrat; Wolf, Don P


    Inherited diseases caused by mitochondrial gene (mtDNA) mutations affect at least 1 in 5000-10,000 children and are associated with severe clinical symptoms. Novel reproductive techniques designed to replace mutated mtDNA in oocytes or early embryos have been proposed to prevent transmission of disease from parents to their children. Here we review the efficacy and safety of these approaches and their associated ethical and regulatory issues.

  3. Herpes simplex virus-mediated human hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyltransferase gene transfer into neuronal cells. (United States)

    Palella, T D; Silverman, L J; Schroll, C T; Homa, F L; Levine, M; Kelley, W N


    The virtually complete deficiency of the purine salvage enzyme hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyltransferase (HPRT) results in a devastating neurological disease, Lesch-Nyhan syndrome. Transfer of the HPRT gene into fibroblasts and lymphoblasts in vitro and into hematopoietic cells in vivo has been accomplished by other groups with retroviral-derived vectors. It appears to be necessary, however, to transfer the HPRT gene into neuronal cells to correct the neurological dysfunction of this disorder. The neurotropic virus herpes simplex virus type 1 has features that make it suitable for use as a vector to transfer the HPRT gene into neuronal tissue. This report describes the isolation of an HPRT-deficient rat neuroma cell line, designated B103-4C, and the construction of a recombinant herpes simplex virus type 1 that contained human HPRT cDNA. These recombinant viruses were used to infect B103-4C cells. Infected cells expressed HPRT activity which was human in origin.

  4. Herpes simplex virus-mediated human hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyltransferase gene transfer into neuronal cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Palella, T.D.; Silverman, L.J.; Schroll, C.T.; Homa, F.L.; Levine, M.; Kelley, W.N.


    The virtually complete deficiency of the purine salvage enzyme hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyltransferase (HPRT) results in a devastating neurological disease, Lesch-Nyhan syndrome. Transfer of the HPRT gene into fibroblasts and lymphoblasts in vitro and into hematopoietic cells in vivo has been accomplished by other groups with retroviral-derived vectors. It appears to be necessary, however, to transfer the HPRT gene into neuronal cells to correct the neurological dysfunction of this disorder. The neurotropic virus herpes simplex virus type 1 has features that make it suitable for use as a vector to transfer the HPRT gene into neuronal tissue. This report describes the isolation of an HPRT-deficient rat neuroma cell line, designated B103-4C, and the construction of a recombinant herpes simplex virus type 1 that contained human HPRT cDNA. These recombinant viruses were used to infect B103-4C cells. Infected cells expressed HPRT activity which was human in origin.

  5. Fluoroquinolone resistance in atypical pneumococci and oral streptococci: evidence of horizontal gene transfer of fluoroquinolone resistance determinants from Streptococcus pneumoniae. (United States)

    Ip, Margaret; Chau, Shirley S L; Chi, Fang; Tang, Julian; Chan, Paul K


    Atypical strains, presumed to be pneumococcus, with ciprofloxacin MICs of > or =4.0 microg/ml and unique sequence variations within the quinolone resistance-determining regions (QRDRs) of the gyrase and topoisomerase genes in comparison with the Streptococcus pneumoniae R6 strain, were examined. These strains were reidentified using phenotypic methods, including detection of optochin susceptibility, bile solubility, and agglutination by serotype-specific antisera, and genotypic methods, including detection of pneumolysin and autolysin genes by PCR, 16S rRNA sequencing, and multilocus sequence typing (MLST). The analysis based on concatenated sequences of the six MLST loci distinguished the "atypical" strains from pneumococci, and these strains clustered closely with S. mitis. However, all these strains and five of nine strains from the viridans streptococcal group possessed one to three gyrA, gyrB, parC, and parE genes whose QRDR sequences clustered with those of S. pneumoniae, providing evidence of horizontal transfer of the QRDRs of the gyrase and topoisomerase genes from pneumococci into viridans streptococci. These genes also conferred fluoroquinolone resistance to viridans streptococci. In addition, the fluoroquinolone resistance determinants of 32 well-characterized Streptococcus mitis and Streptococcus oralis strains from bacteremic patients were also compared. These strains have unique amino acid substitutions in GyrA and ParC that were distinguishable from those in fluoroquinolone-resistant pneumococci and the "atypical" isolates. Both recombinational events and de novo mutations play an important role in the development of fluoroquinolone resistance.

  6. Stable genetic transformation of Jatropha curcas via Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated gene transfer using leaf explants

    KAUST Repository

    Kumar, Nitish


    Jatropha curcas is an oil bearing species with multiple uses and considerable economic potential as a biofuel crop. A simple and reproducible protocol was developed for Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated stable genetic transformation of J. curcas using leaf explains. Agrobacterium strain LBA 4404 harbouring the binary vector pCAMBIA 1304 having sense-dehydration responsive element binding (S-DREB2A), beta-glucuronidase (gus), and hygromycin-phosphotransferase (hpt) genes were used for gene transfer. A number of parameters such as preculture of explains, wounding of leaf explants, Agrobacterium growth phase (OD), infection duration, co-cultivation period, co-cultivation medium pH, and acetosyringone, were studied to optimized transformation efficiency. The highest transformation efficiency was achieved using 4-day precultured, non-wounded leaf explants infected with Agrobacterium culture corresponding to OD(600)=0.6 for 20 min, followed by co-cultivation for 4 days in a co-cultivation medium containing 100 mu M acetosyringone, pH 5.7. Co-cultivated leaf explants were initially cultured on Murashige and Skoog (MS) medium supplemented with 2.27 mu M thidiazuron (TDZ) for regeneration of shoot buds, followed by selection on same medium with 5 mu g ml(-1) hygromycin. Selected shoot buds were transferred to MS medium containing 10 mu M kinetin (Kn), 4.5 mu M 6-benzyl aminopurine (BA), and 5.5 mu M alpha-naphthaleneacetic acid (NAA) for proliferation. The proliferated shoots were elongated on MS medium supplemented with 2.25 mu M BA and 8.5 mu M indole-3-acetic acid (IAA). The elongated shoots were rooted on half strength MS medium supplemented with 15 mu M indole-3-butyric acid (IBA), 5.7 mu M IAA, 5.5 mu M NAA, and 0.25 mg l(-1) activated charcoal. GUS histochemical analysis of the transgenic tissues further confirmed the transformation event. PCR and DNA gel blot hybridization were performed to confirm the presence of transgene. A transformation efficiency of 29% was

  7. Ex-Vivo Gene Therapy Using Lentiviral Mediated Gene Transfer Into Umbilical Cord Blood Derived Stem Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hanieh Jalali


    Full Text Available Background Introduction of therapeutic genes into the injured site of nervous system can be achieved using transplantation of cellular vehicles containing desired gene. To transfer exogenous genes into the cellular vehicles, lentiviral vectors are one of interested vectors because of advantages such high transduction efficiency of dividing and non-dividing cells. Unrestricted somatic stem cells are subclasses of umbilical cord blood derived stem cells which are appreciate candidates to use as cellular vehicles for ex vivo gene therapy of nervous system. Objectives In current study we investigated the effect of lentiviral vector transduction on the neuronal related features of unrestricted somatic stem cells to indicate the probable and unwanted changes related to transduction procedure. Materials and Methods In this experimental study, lentiviral vector containing green fluorescent protein (GFP were transduced into unrestricted somatic stem cells and its effect was investigated with using MTT assay, qPCR and immunohistochemistry techniques. For statistical comparison of real time PCR results, REST software (2009, Qiagen was used. Results Obtained results showed lentiviral vector transduction did not have cytotoxic effects on unrestricted somatic stem cells and did not change neuronal differentiation capacity of them as well the expression of some neuronal related genes and preserved them in multilineage situation. Conclusions In conclusion, we suggested that lentiviral vectors could be proper vectors to transfer therapeutic gene into unrestricted somatic stem cells to provide a cellular vehicle for ex vivo gene therapy of nervous system disorders.

  8. Horizontal Transfer of Plasmid-Mediated Cephalosporin Resistance Genes in the Intestine of Houseflies (Musca domestica). (United States)

    Fukuda, Akira; Usui, Masaru; Okubo, Torahiko; Tamura, Yutaka


    Houseflies are a mechanical vector for various types of bacteria, including antimicrobial-resistant bacteria (ARB). If the intestine of houseflies is a suitable site for the transfer of antimicrobial resistance genes (ARGs), houseflies could also serve as a biological vector for ARB. To clarify whether cephalosporin resistance genes are transferred efficiently in the housefly intestine, we compared with conjugation experiments in vivo (in the intestine) and in vitro by using Escherichia coli with eight combinations of four donor and two recipient strains harboring plasmid-mediated cephalosporin resistance genes and chromosomal-encoded rifampicin resistance genes, respectively. In the in vivo conjugation experiment, houseflies ingested donor strains for 6 hr and then recipient strains for 3 hr, and 24 hr later, the houseflies were surface sterilized and analyzed. In vitro conjugation experiments were conducted using the broth-mating method. In 3/8 combinations, the in vitro transfer frequency (Transconjugants/Donor) was ≥1.3 × 10(-4); the in vivo transfer rates of cephalosporin resistance genes ranged from 2.0 × 10(-4) to 5.7 × 10(-5). Moreover, cephalosporin resistance genes were transferred to other species of enteric bacteria of houseflies such as Achromobacter sp. and Pseudomonas fluorescens. These results suggest that houseflies are not only a mechanical vector for ARB but also a biological vector for the occurrence of new ARB through the horizontal transfer of ARGs in their intestine.

  9. Gene transfer for inherited metabolic disorders of the liver: immunological challenges. (United States)

    Gordts, Stephanie C; Van Craeyveld, Eline; Jacobs, Frank; De Geest, Bart


    Hepatocytes are a key target for gene transfer directed at correction of inborn errors of metabolism. The theoretical potential of hepatocyte-directed gene transfer contrasts with the hurdles for clinical translation of this technology. Innate immune responses following gene transfer are initiated by recognition of pathogen-associated molecular patterns by pattern recognition receptors like Toll-like receptors. Adaptive immune responses may constitute the most significant hurdle for efficient gene transfer. Besides the challenge imposed by adaptive immune responses against the vector and the potential problem of pre-existing immunity, immune responses against the transgene product may also constitute an obstacle. The liver is a tolerogenic organ. Naive T cells encounter liver antigens initially in the liver, rather than in lymphoid tissue. Lymph nodes and the spleen are anatomical compartments that provide a particular microarchitecture and microenvironment for the induction of immunity. In contrast, antigen presentation in the liver takes place in a completely different microarchitecture and microenvironment. This is a key aspect of the hepatic adaptive immune tolerance induction. Consistent with the tolerogenic nature of the liver microenvironment, the risk of antibody formation against the transgene product may be limited in the setting of hepatocyte-directed gene transfer and specifically by restricting transgene expression to hepatocytes by use of hepatocyte-specific expression cassettes. However, it is unclear to which extent animal experimental data following gene transfer predict immune responses in humans. Extrapolations from animals to humans are required but should be performed with sufficient insight into the dramatic species differences of the immune system.

  10. An Efficient Low Cost Method for Gene Transfer to T Lymphocytes (United States)

    Chicaybam, Leonardo; Sodre, Andressa Laino; Curzio, Bianca Azevedo; Bonamino, Martin Hernan


    Gene transfer to T lymphocytes has historically relied on retro and lentivirus, but recently transposon-based gene transfer is rising as a simpler and straight forward approach to achieve stable transgene expression. Transfer of expression cassettes to T lymphocytes remains challenging, being based mainly on commercial kits. Aims We herein report a convenient and affordable method based on in house made buffers, generic cuvettes and utilization of the widely available Lonza nucleofector II device to promote efficient gene transfer to T lymphocytes. Results This approach renders high transgene expression levels in primary human T lymphocytes (mean 45%, 41–59%), the hard to transfect murine T cells (mean 38%, 36–42% for C57/BL6 strain) and human Jurkat T cell line. Cell viability levels after electroporation allowed further manipulations such as in vitro expansion and Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) mediated gain of function for target cell lysis. Conclusions We describe here an efficient general protocol for electroporation based modification of T lymphocytes. By opening access to this protocol, we expect that efficient gene transfer to T lymphocytes, for transient or stable expression, may be achieved by an increased number of laboratories at lower and affordable costs. PMID:23555950

  11. An efficient low cost method for gene transfer to T lymphocytes.

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    Leonardo Chicaybam

    Full Text Available UNLABELLED: Gene transfer to T lymphocytes has historically relied on retro and lentivirus, but recently transposon-based gene transfer is rising as a simpler and straight forward approach to achieve stable transgene expression. Transfer of expression cassettes to T lymphocytes remains challenging, being based mainly on commercial kits. AIMS: We herein report a convenient and affordable method based on in house made buffers, generic cuvettes and utilization of the widely available Lonza nucleofector II device to promote efficient gene transfer to T lymphocytes. RESULTS: This approach renders high transgene expression levels in primary human T lymphocytes (mean 45%, 41-59%, the hard to transfect murine T cells (mean 38%, 36-42% for C57/BL6 strain and human Jurkat T cell line. Cell viability levels after electroporation allowed further manipulations such as in vitro expansion and Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR mediated gain of function for target cell lysis. CONCLUSIONS: We describe here an efficient general protocol for electroporation based modification of T lymphocytes. By opening access to this protocol, we expect that efficient gene transfer to T lymphocytes, for transient or stable expression, may be achieved by an increased number of laboratories at lower and affordable costs.

  12. Evolutionarily diverged regulation of X-chromosomal genes as a primal event in mouse reproductive isolation. (United States)

    Oka, Ayako; Takada, Toyoyuki; Fujisawa, Hironori; Shiroishi, Toshihiko


    Improper gene regulation is implicated in reproductive isolation, but its genetic and molecular bases are unknown. We previously reported that a mouse inter-subspecific X chromosome substitution strain shows reproductive isolation characterized by male-specific sterility due to disruption of meiotic entry in spermatogenesis. Here, we conducted comprehensive transcriptional profiling of the testicular cells of this strain by microarray. The results clearly revealed gross misregulation of gene expression in the substituted donor X chromosome. Such misregulation occurred prior to detectable spermatogenetic impairment, suggesting that it is a primal event in reproductive isolation. The misregulation of X-linked genes showed asymmetry; more genes were disproportionally downregulated rather than upregulated. Furthermore, this misregulation subsequently resulted in perturbation of global transcriptional regulation of autosomal genes, probably by cascading deleterious effects. Remarkably, this transcriptional misregulation was substantially restored by introduction of chromosome 1 from the same donor strain as the X chromosome. This finding implies that one of regulatory genes acting in trans for X-linked target genes is located on chromosome 1. This study collectively suggests that regulatory incompatibility is a major cause of reproductive isolation in the X chromosome substitution strain.


    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    Objective: To investigate retroviral-mediated transfer and expression of human multidrug resistance (MDR) gene MDR1 in leukemic cells. Methods: Human myeloid cells, K562 and NB4, were infected by MDR retrovirus from the producer PA317/HaMDR, and the resistant cells were selected with cytotoxic drug. The transfer and expression of MDR1 gene was analyzed by using polymerase chain reaction (PCR), flow cytometry (FCM) and semisolid colonies cultivation. Results: The resistant cells, K562/MDR and NB4/MDR, in which integration of the exogenous MDR1 gene was confirmed by PCR analysis, displayed a typical MDR phenotype. The expression of MDR1 transgene was detected on truncated as well as full-length transcripts. Moreover, the resistant cells were P-glycoprotein postiive at 78.0% to 98.7% analyzed with FCM. The transduction efficieny in K562 cells was studied on suspension cultures and single-cell colonies. The transduction was more efficient in coculture system (67.9%~ 72.5%) than in supernatant system (33.1%~ 46.8%), while growth factors may improve the efficiency. Conclusion: Retrovirus could allow a functional transfer and expression of MDR1 gene in human leukemia cells, and MDR1 might act as a dominant selectable gene for coexpression with the genes of interest in gene therapy.

  14. Transferring Gus gene into intact rice cells by low energy ion beam (United States)

    Zengliang, Yu; Jianbo, Yang; Yuejin, Wu; Beijiu, Cheng; Jianjun, He; Yuping, Huo


    A new technique of transferring genes by low energy ion beam has been reported in this paper. The Gus and CAT (chloramphenicol acetyltransferase) genes, as "foreign" genetic materials, were introduced into the suspension cells and ripe embryos or rice by implantation of 20-30 keV Ar + at doses ranging from 1 × 10 15 to 4 × 10 15 ions/cm 2. The activities of CAT and Gus were detected in the cells and embryos after several weeks. The results indicate that the transfer was a success.

  15. Hyperactive piggyBac Gene Transfer in Human Cells and In Vivo


    Doherty, Joseph E.; Huye, Leslie E; Yusa, Kosuke; Zhou, Liqin; Craig, Nancy L; Wilson, Matthew H.


    We characterized a recently developed hyperactive piggyBac (pB) transposase enzyme [containing seven mutations (7pB)] for gene transfer in human cells in vitro and to somatic cells in mice in vivo. Despite a protein level expression similar to that of native pB, 7pB significantly increased the gene transfer efficiency of a neomycin resistance cassette transposon in both HEK293 and HeLa cultured human cells. Native pB and SB100X, the most active transposase of the Sleeping Beauty transposon sy...

  16. The effect of mucolytic agents on gene transfer across a CF sputum barrier in vitro. (United States)

    Stern, M; Caplen, N J; Browning, J E; Griesenbach, U; Sorgi, F; Huang, L; Gruenert, D C; Marriot, C; Crystal, R G; Geddes, D M; Alton, E W


    Trials of gene transfer for cystic fibrosis (CF) are currently underway. However, direct application to the airways may be impeded by the presence of airway secretions. We have therefore assessed the effect of CF sputum on the expression of the reporter gene beta-galactosidase complexed with the cationic liposome DC-Chol/DOPE in a number of cell lines in vitro. Transfection was markedly inhibited in the presence of sputum; the effect was concentration dependent and was only partially ameliorated by removal of sputum with phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) washing before gene transfer. However, treatment of the sputum-covered cells with recombinant human DNase (rhDNase, 50 micrograms/ml) but not with N-acetylcysteine, Nacystelyn, lysine (all 20 mM) or recombinant alginase (0.5 U/ml) significantly (P < 0.005) improved gene transfer. Adenovirus-mediated gene transfer efficiency in the presence of sputum was similarly inhibited, and again, treatment with rhDNase before transfection significantly improved gene transfer (P < 0.005). Transfection of Cos 7 cells in the presence of exogenous genomic DNA alone demonstrated similar inhibition to that observed with sputum and was also ameliorated by pre-treatment of DNA-covered cells with rhDNase. In a separate series of experiments performed in the absence of added sputum or genomic DNA, increasing concentrations of rhDNase resulted in a concentration-related decline in transfection efficiency. However, even at the highest concentration (500 micrograms/ml of rhDNase), transfection efficiency remained more than 50% of control. Thus, pre-treatment of CF airways with rhDNase may be appropriate before liposome or adenovirus-mediated gene therapy.

  17. Stress Transfer due to the June 23, 2001, Arequipa, Peru, Earthquake and Previous Large Subduction Events (United States)

    Robinson, R.; Benites, R.; Ocola, L.; Stirling, M.; Langridge, R.; Aleman, H.


    The 23 June M 8.2 Arequipa, Peru earthquake complies to an observed general tendency of the of major earthquakes (M > 7.0) on the subduction thrust under central and southern Peru to migrate southwards. The region considered is about 1500 km in length. Our purpose in this study is to find if such a tendency is the result of stress-triggering among these events, and to estimate changes in the Coulomb failure stress (CFS) in the region, in particular in two apparent seismic gaps suggested by other researchers. We address the problem by modelling the larger events since 1940 as uniform slip on rectangular fault planes on the subduction thrust, whose dimensions are estimated using aftershock data. The calculations are done for an elastic half-space but we investigate the effect of a range of parameters, such as the elastic constants, coefficient of friction and pore pressure. In general, for a shallow-dipping thrust fault the induced CFS is positive on extensions of the fault along strike and down dip. So we expect there could be strong coupling between the events on the subduction interface, leading to patterns such as the southward temporal migration. We will also study the position of the larger aftershocks of the Arequipa event in relation to the changes in CFF induced by the mainshock.

  18. When leaf becomes neuter: event-related potential evidence for grammatical gender transfer in bilingualism. (United States)

    Ganushchak, Lesya Y; Verdonschot, Rinus G; Schiller, Niels O


    This study addressed the question as to whether grammatical properties of a first language are transferred to a second language. Dutch-English bilinguals classified Dutch words in white print according to their grammatical gender and colored words (i.e. Dutch common and neuter words, and their English translations) according to their color. Both the classifications were made with the same hand (congruent trials) or different hands (incongruent trials). Performance was more erroneous and the error-elated negativity was enhanced on incongruent compared with congruent trials. This effect was independent of the language in which words were presented. These results provide evidence for the fact that bilinguals may transfer grammatical characteristics of their first language to a second language, even when such characteristics are absent in the grammar of the latter.

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

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    Xie Jiatao


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

  20. Bacteriophage Mediates Efficient Gene Transfer in Combination with Conventional Transfection Reagents

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    Amanda Donnelly


    Full Text Available The development of commercially available transfection reagents for gene transfer applications has revolutionized the field of molecular biology and scientific research. However, the challenge remains in ensuring that they are efficient, safe, reproducible and cost effective. Bacteriophage (phage-based viral vectors have the potential to be utilized for general gene transfer applications within research and industry. Yet, they require adaptations in order to enable them to efficiently enter cells and overcome mammalian cellular barriers, as they infect bacteria only; furthermore, limited progress has been made at increasing their efficiency. The production of a novel hybrid nanocomplex system consisting of two different nanomaterial systems, phage vectors and conventional transfection reagents, could overcome these limitations. Here we demonstrate that the combination of cationic lipids, cationic polymers or calcium phosphate with M13 bacteriophage-derived vectors, engineered to carry a mammalian transgene cassette, resulted in increased cellular attachment, entry and improved transgene expression in human cells. Moreover, addition of a targeting ligand into the nanocomplex system, through genetic engineering of the phage capsid further increased gene expression and was effective in a stable cell line generation application. Overall, this new hybrid nanocomplex system (i provides enhanced phage-mediated gene transfer; (ii is applicable for laboratory transfection processes and (iii shows promise within industry for large-scale gene transfer applications.

  1. Plant nodulation inducers enhance horizontal gene transfer of Azorhizobium caulinodans symbiosis island. (United States)

    Ling, Jun; Wang, Hui; Wu, Ping; Li, Tao; Tang, Yu; Naseer, Nawar; Zheng, Huiming; Masson-Boivin, Catherine; Zhong, Zengtao; Zhu, Jun


    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) of genomic islands is a driving force of bacterial evolution. Many pathogens and symbionts use this mechanism to spread mobile genetic elements that carry genes important for interaction with their eukaryotic hosts. However, the role of the host in this process remains unclear. Here, we show that plant compounds inducing the nodulation process in the rhizobium-legume mutualistic symbiosis also enhance the transfer of symbiosis islands. We demonstrate that the symbiosis island of the Sesbania rostrata symbiont, Azorhizobium caulinodans, is an 87.6-kb integrative and conjugative element (ICE(Ac)) that is able to excise, form a circular DNA, and conjugatively transfer to a specific site of gly-tRNA gene of other rhizobial genera, expanding their host range. The HGT frequency was significantly increased in the rhizosphere. An ICE(Ac)-located LysR-family transcriptional regulatory protein AhaR triggered the HGT process in response to plant flavonoids that induce the expression of nodulation genes through another LysR-type protein, NodD. Our study suggests that rhizobia may sense rhizosphere environments and transfer their symbiosis gene contents to other genera of rhizobia, thereby broadening rhizobial host-range specificity.

  2. Use of HIV as a gene transfer vector. (United States)

    Pluta, Krzysztof; Kacprzak, Magdalena Marta


    Despite the extensive research efforts over the past 25 years that have focused on HIV, there is still no cure for AIDS. However, tremendous progress in the understanding of the structure and biology of the HIV virus led to the development of safe and potent HIV-based transgene delivery vectors. These genetic vehicles are referred to as lentiviral vectors. They appear to be better suited for particular applications, such as transgene delivery into stem cells, compared to other viral- and non-viral vectors. This is because Lentivirus-based vectors can efficiently infect nondividing and slowly dividing cells. In the present review article, the current state of understanding of HIV-1 is discussed and the main characteristics that had an impact on vector design are outlined. A historical view on the vector concept is presented to facilitate discussion of recent results in vector engineering in a broader context. Subsequently, a state of the art overview concerning vector construction and vector production is given. This review also touches upon the subject of lentiviral vector safety and related topics that can be helpful in addressing this issue are discussed. Finally, examples of Lentivirus-based gene delivery systems and their applications are presented, with emphasis on animal transgenesis and human gene therapy.

  3. Collective evolution of cyanobacteria and cyanophages mediated by horizontal gene transfer (United States)

    Shih, Hong-Yan; Rogers, Tim; Goldenfeld, Nigel

    We describe a model for how antagonistic predator-prey coevolution can lead to mutualistic adaptation to an environment, as a result of horizontal gene transfer. Our model is a simple description of ecosystems such as marine cyanobacteria and their predator cyanophages, which carry photosynthesis genes. These genes evolve more rapidly in the virosphere than the bacterial pan-genome, and thus the bacterial population could potentially benefit from phage predation. By modeling both the barrier to predation and horizontal gene transfer, we study this balance between individual sacrifice and collective benefits. The outcome is an emergent mutualistic coevolution of improved photosynthesis capability, benefiting both bacteria and phage. This form of multi-level selection can contribute to niche stratification in the cyanobacteria-phage ecosystem. This work is supported in part by a cooperative agreement with NASA, Grant NNA13AA91A/A0018.

  4. Adenoviral transfer of human interleukin-10 gene in lethal pancreatitis

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zi-Qian Chen; Yao-Qing Tang; Yi Zhang; Zhi-Hong Jiang; En-Qiang Mao; Wei-Guo Zou; Ruo-Qing Lei; Tian-Quan Han; Sheng-Dao Zhang


    AIM: To evaluate the therapeutic effect of adenoviral-vectordelivered human interleukin-10 (hIL-10) gene on severe acute pancreatitis (SAP) rats.METHODS: Healthy Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats were intraperitoneally injected with adenoviral IL-10 gene (AdvhIL-10), empty vector (Adv0) or PBS solution. Blood,liver, pancreas and lung were harvested on the second day to examine hIL-10 level by ELISA and serum amylase by enzymatic assay. A SAP model was induced by retrograde injection of sodium taurocholate through pancreatic duct.SAP rats were then administered with AdvhIL-10, Adv0 and PBS solution by a single intraperitoneal injection 20 min after SAP induction. In addition to serum amylase assay,levels of hIL-10 and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) were detected by RT-PCR, ELISA and histological study. The mortality rate was studied and analyzed by Kaplan-Meier and log rank analysis.RESULTS: The levels of hIL-10 in the pancreas, liver and lung of healthy rats increased significantly after AdvhIL-10injection (1.42 ng/g in liver, 0.91 ng/g in pancreas); while there was no significant change of hIL-10 in the other two control groups. The concentration of hIL-10 was increased significantly in the SAP rats after AdvhIL-10 injection (1.68 ng/g in liver, 1.12 ng/g in pancreas) compared to the other two SAP groups with blank vector or PBS treatment (P<0.05). The serum amylase levels remained normal in the AdvhIL-10 transfected healthy rats. However,the serum amylase level was significantly elevated in the other two control SAP rats. In contrast, serum amylase was down-regulated in the AdvhIL-10 treated SAP groups.The TNF-α expression in the AdvhIL-10 treated SAP rats was significantly lower compared to the other two control SAP groups. The pathohistological changes in the AdvhIL-10 treated group were better than those in the other two control groups. Furthermore, the mortality of the AdvhIL-10 treated group was significantly reduced compared to the other two control groups (P

  5. Extensive horizontal transfer of core genome genes between two Lactobacillus species found in the gastrointestinal tract

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    Maguin Emmanuelle


    Full Text Available Abstract Background While genes that are conserved between related bacterial species are usually thought to have evolved along with the species, phylogenetic trees reconstructed for individual genes may contradict this picture and indicate horizontal gene transfer. Individual trees are often not resolved with high confidence, however, and in that case alternative trees are generally not considered as contradicting the species tree, although not confirming it either. Here we conduct an in-depth analysis of 401 protein phylogenetic trees inferred with varying levels of confidence for three lactobacilli from the acidophilus complex. At present the relationship between these bacteria, isolated from environments as diverse as the gastrointestinal tract (Lactobacillus acidophilus and Lactobacillus johnsonii and yogurt (Lactobacillus delbrueckii ssp. bulgaricus, is ambiguous due to contradictory phenotypical and 16S rRNA based classifications. Results Among the 401 phylogenetic trees, those that could be reconstructed with high confidence support the 16S-rRNA tree or one alternative topology in an astonishing 3:2 ratio, while the third possible topology is practically absent. Lowering the confidence threshold for trees to be taken into consideration does not significantly affect this ratio, and therefore suggests that gene transfer may have affected as much as 40% of the core genome genes. Gene function bias suggests that the 16S rRNA phylogeny of the acidophilus complex, which indicates that L. acidophilus and L. delbrueckii ssp. bulgaricus are the closest related of these three species, is correct. A novel approach of comparison of interspecies protein divergence data employed in this study allowed to determine that gene transfer most likely took place between the lineages of the two species found in the gastrointestinal tract. Conclusion This case-study reports an unprecedented level of phylogenetic incongruence, presumably resulting from extensive

  6. No evidence for extensive horizontal gene transfer in the genome of the tardigrade Hypsibius dujardini


    Koutsovoulos, Georgios; Kumar, Sujai; Laetsch, Dominik R.; Stevens, Lewis; Daub, Jennifer; Conlon, Claire; Maroon, Habib; Thomas, Fran; Aboobaker, Aziz A.; Blaxter, Mark


    Tardigrades, also known as moss piglets or water bears, are renowned for their ability to withstand extreme environmental challenges. A recently published analysis of the genome of the tardigrade Hypsibius dujardini by Boothby et al. concluded that horizontal acquisition of genes from bacterial and other sources might be key to cryptobiosis in tardigrades. We independently sequenced the genome of H. dujardini and detected a low level of horizontal gene transfer. We show that the extensive hor...

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

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    Weber Andreas PM


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

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

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    Keeling Patrick J


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

  9. Texts and the Dynamics of Cultural Transfer – Translations as Events

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    Ton Naaijkens


    Full Text Available The notion of a moveable text involves projection - projection in the form of interpretation, projection also in the form of translation, so that something like a double movement comes into being. Translations constitute a special case of cultural dynamics as, in a sense, they both repeat and change what was written before. They function and are effective in a new environment. Their outcome is not wholly a new original, such as writers produce, but neither a noncommittal reaction or detached study, such as critics deliver. In translations we see the workings of cultural dynamics in optima forma. In order to interpret these dynamics and the receptional afterlife of a text, a distinction should be made between reception events and reception incidents. The author of the article suggests that there is a strong case to award translations the status of event.

  10. Development of gene transfer for induction of antigen-specific tolerance

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    Brandon K Sack


    Full Text Available Gene replacement therapies, like organ and cell transplantation, are likely to introduce neoantigens that elicit rejection via humoral and/or effector T-cell immune responses. Nonetheless, thanks to an ever-growing body of preclinical studies; it is now well accepted that gene transfer protocols can be specifically designed and optimized for induction of antigen-specific immune tolerance. One approach is to specifically express a gene in a tissue with a tolerogenic microenvironment such as the liver or thymus. Another strategy is to transfer a particular gene into hematopoietic stem cells or immunological precursor cells thus educating the immune system to recognize the therapeutic protein as “self.” In addition, expression of the therapeutic protein in protolerogenic antigen-presenting cells such as immature dendritic cells and B cells has proven to be promising. All three approaches have successfully prevented unwanted immune responses in preclinical studies aimed at the treatment of inherited protein deficiencies, e.g., lysosomal storage disorders and hemophilia, and of type 1 diabetes and multiple sclerosis. In this review, we focus on current gene transfer protocols that induce tolerance, including gene delivery vehicles and target tissues, and discuss successes and obstacles in different disease models.

  11. Horizontal transfer of a nitrate assimilation gene cluster and ecological transitions in fungi: a phylogenetic study.

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    Jason C Slot

    Full Text Available High affinity nitrate assimilation genes in fungi occur in a cluster (fHANT-AC that can be coordinately regulated. The clustered genes include nrt2, which codes for a high affinity nitrate transporter; euknr, which codes for nitrate reductase; and NAD(PH-nir, which codes for nitrite reductase. Homologs of genes in the fHANT-AC occur in other eukaryotes and prokaryotes, but they have only been found clustered in the oomycete Phytophthora (heterokonts. We performed independent and concatenated phylogenetic analyses of homologs of all three genes in the fHANT-AC. Phylogenetic analyses limited to fungal sequences suggest that the fHANT-AC has been transferred horizontally from a basidiomycete (mushrooms and smuts to an ancestor of the ascomycetous mold Trichoderma reesei. Phylogenetic analyses of sequences from diverse eukaryotes and eubacteria, and cluster structure, are consistent with a hypothesis that the fHANT-AC was assembled in a lineage leading to the oomycetes and was subsequently transferred to the Dikarya (Ascomycota+Basidiomycota, which is a derived fungal clade that includes the vast majority of terrestrial fungi. We propose that the acquisition of high affinity nitrate assimilation contributed to the success of Dikarya on land by allowing exploitation of nitrate in aerobic soils, and the subsequent transfer of a complete assimilation cluster improved the fitness of T. reesei in a new niche. Horizontal transmission of this cluster of functionally integrated genes supports the "selfish operon" hypothesis for maintenance of gene clusters.

  12. Fluoroquinolone induction of phage-mediated gene transfer in multidrug-resistant Salmonella. (United States)

    Bearson, Bradley L; Brunelle, Brian W


    Fluoroquinolones are broad-spectrum antibiotics that inhibit bacterial DNA gyrase and topoisomerase activity, which can cause DNA damage and result in bacterial cell death. In response to DNA damage, bacteria induce an SOS response to stimulate DNA repair. However, the SOS response may also induce prophage with production of infectious virions. Salmonella strains typically contain multiple prophages, and certain strains including phage types DT120 and DT104 contain prophage that upon induction are capable of generalised transduction. In this study, strains of multidrug-resistant (MDR) Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium DT120 and DT104 were exposed to fluoroquinolones important for use in human and veterinary disease therapy to determine whether prophage(s) are induced that could facilitate phage-mediated gene transfer. Cultures of MDR S. Typhimurium DT120 and DT104 containing a kanamycin resistance plasmid were lysed after exposure to fluoroquinolones (ciprofloxacin, enrofloxacin and danofloxacin). Bacterial cell lysates were able to transfer the plasmid to a recipient kanamycin-susceptible Salmonella strain by generalised transduction. In addition, exposure of DT120 to ciprofloxacin induced the recA gene of the bacterial SOS response and genes encoded in a P22-like generalised transducing prophage. This research indicates that fluoroquinolone exposure of MDR Salmonella can facilitate horizontal gene transfer, suggesting that fluoroquinolone usage in human and veterinary medicine may have unintended consequences, including the induction of phage-mediated gene transfer from MDR Salmonella. Stimulation of gene transfer following bacterial exposure to fluoroquinolones should be considered an adverse effect, and clinical decisions regarding antibiotic selection for infectious disease therapy should include this potential risk. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  13. Regeneration of multiple shoots from transgenic potato events facilitates the recovery of phenotypically normal lines: assessing a cry9Aa2 gene conferring insect resistance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacobs Jeanne ME


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The recovery of high performing transgenic lines in clonal crops is limited by the occurrence of somaclonal variation during the tissue culture phase of transformation. This is usually circumvented by developing large populations of transgenic lines, each derived from the first shoot to regenerate from each transformation event. This study investigates a new strategy of assessing multiple shoots independently regenerated from different transformed cell colonies of potato (Solanum tuberosum L.. Results A modified cry9Aa2 gene, under the transcriptional control of the CaMV 35S promoter, was transformed into four potato cultivars using Agrobacterium-mediated gene transfer using a nptII gene conferring kanamycin resistance as a selectable marker gene. Following gene transfer, 291 transgenic lines were grown in greenhouse experiments to assess somaclonal variation and resistance to potato tuber moth (PTM, Phthorimaea operculella (Zeller. Independently regenerated lines were recovered from many transformed cell colonies and Southern analysis confirmed whether they were derived from the same transformed cell. Multiple lines regenerated from the same transformed cell exhibited a similar response to PTM, but frequently exhibited a markedly different spectrum of somaclonal variation. Conclusions A new strategy for the genetic improvement of clonal crops involves the regeneration and evaluation of multiple shoots from each transformation event to facilitate the recovery of phenotypically normal transgenic lines. Most importantly, regenerated lines exhibiting the phenotypic appearance most similar to the parental cultivar are not necessarily derived from the first shoot regenerated from a transformed cell colony, but can frequently be a later regeneration event.

  14. Field study results on the probability and risk of a horizontal gene transfer from transgenic herbicide-resistant oilseed rape pollen to gut bacteria of bees. (United States)

    Mohr, Kathrin I; Tebbe, Christoph C


    Bees are specifically subjected to intimate contacts with transgenic plants due to their feeding activities on pollen. In this study, the probability and ecological risk of a gene transfer from pollen to gut bacteria of bees was investigated with larvae of Apis mellifera (honeybee), Bombus terrestris (bumblebee), and Osmia bicornis (red mason bee), all collected at a flowering transgenic oilseed rape field. The plants were genetically engineered with the pat-gene, conferring resistance against glufosinate (syn. phosphinothricin), a glutamine-synthetase inhibitor in plants and microorganisms. Ninety-six bacterial strains were isolated and characterized by 16S rRNA gene sequencing, revealing that Firmicutes represented 58% of the isolates, Actinobacteria 31%, and Proteobacteria 11%, respectively. Of all isolates, 40% were resistant to 1 mM glufosinate, and 11% even to 10 mM. Resistant phenotypes were found in all phylogenetic groups. None of the resistant phenotypes carried the recombinant pat-gene in its genome. The threshold of detecting gene transfer in this field study was relatively insensitive due to the high background of natural glufosinate resistance. However, the broad occurrence of glufosinate-resistant bacteria from different phylogenetic groups suggests that rare events of horizontal gene transfer will not add significantly to natural bacterial glufosinate resistance.

  15. Horizontal gene transfer and nucleotide compositional anomaly in large DNA viruses

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    Ogata Hiroyuki


    Full Text Available Abstract Background DNA viruses have a wide range of genome sizes (5 kb up to 1.2 Mb, compared to 0.16 Mb to 1.5 Mb for obligate parasitic bacteria that do not correlate with their virulence or the taxonomic distribution of their hosts. The reasons for such large variation are unclear. According to the traditional view of viruses as gifted "gene pickpockets", large viral genome sizes could originate from numerous gene acquisitions from their hosts. We investigated this hypothesis by studying 67 large DNA viruses with genome sizes larger than 150 kb, including the recently characterized giant mimivirus. Given that horizontally transferred DNA often have anomalous nucleotide compositions differing from the rest of the genome, we conducted a detailed analysis of the inter- and intra-genome compositional properties of these viruses. We then interpreted their compositional heterogeneity in terms of possible causes, including strand asymmetry, gene function/expression, and horizontal transfer. Results We first show that the global nucleotide composition and nucleotide word usage of viral genomes are species-specific and distinct from those of their hosts. Next, we identified compositionally anomalous (cA genes in viral genomes, using a method based on Bayesian inference. The proportion of cA genes is highly variable across viruses and does not exhibit a significant correlation with genome size. The vast majority of the cA genes were of unknown function, lacking homologs in the databases. For genes with known homologs, we found a substantial enrichment of cA genes in specific functional classes for some of the viruses. No significant association was found between cA genes and compositional strand asymmetry. A possible exogenous origin for a small fraction of the cA genes could be confirmed by phylogenetic reconstruction. Conclusion At odds with the traditional dogma, our results argue against frequent genetic transfers to large DNA viruses from their

  16. Editing T cell specificity towards leukemia by zinc finger nucleases and lentiviral gene transfer. (United States)

    Provasi, Elena; Genovese, Pietro; Lombardo, Angelo; Magnani, Zulma; Liu, Pei-Qi; Reik, Andreas; Chu, Victoria; Paschon, David E; Zhang, Lei; Kuball, Jurgen; Camisa, Barbara; Bondanza, Attilio; Casorati, Giulia; Ponzoni, Maurilio; Ciceri, Fabio; Bordignon, Claudio; Greenberg, Philip D; Holmes, Michael C; Gregory, Philip D; Naldini, Luigi; Bonini, Chiara


    The transfer of high-avidity T cell receptor (TCR) genes isolated from rare tumor-specific lymphocytes into polyclonal T cells is an attractive cancer immunotherapy strategy. However, TCR gene transfer results in competition for surface expression and inappropriate pairing between the exogenous and endogenous TCR chains, resulting in suboptimal activity and potentially harmful unpredicted antigen specificities of the resultant TCRs. We designed zinc-finger nucleases (ZFNs) that promoted the disruption of endogenous TCR β- and α-chain genes. Lymphocytes treated with ZFNs lacked surface expression of CD3-TCR and expanded with the addition of interleukin-7 (IL-7) and IL-15. After lentiviral transfer of a TCR specific for the Wilms tumor 1 (WT1) antigen, these TCR-edited cells expressed the new TCR at high levels, were easily expanded to near purity and were superior at specific antigen recognition compared to donor-matched, unedited TCR-transferred cells. In contrast to unedited TCR-transferred cells, the TCR-edited lymphocytes did not mediate off-target reactivity while maintaining their anti-tumor activity in vivo, thus showing that complete editing of T cell specificity generates tumor-specific lymphocytes with improved biosafety profiles.

  17. Editing T cell specificity towards leukemia by zinc-finger nucleases and lentiviral gene transfer (United States)

    Lombardo, Angelo; Magnani, Zulma; Liu, Pei-Qi; Reik, Andreas; Chu, Victoria; Paschon, David E.; Zhang, Lei; Kuball, Jurgen; Camisa, Barbara; Bondanza, Attilio; Casorati, Giulia; Ponzoni, Maurilio; Ciceri, Fabio; Bordignon, Claudio; Greenberg, Philip D.; Holmes, Michael C.; Gregory, Philip D.; Naldini, Luigi; Bonini, Chiara


    The transfer of high-avidity T-cell receptor (TCR) genes isolated from rare tumor-specific lymphocytes into polyclonal T cells is an attractive cancer immunotherapy strategy. However, TCR gene transfer results in competition for surface expression and inappropriate pairing between the exogenous and endogenous TCR chains, resulting in suboptimal activity and potentially harmful unpredicted specificities. We designed zinc-finger nucleases (ZFNs) promoting the disruption of endogenous TCR β and α chain genes. ZFN-treated lymphocytes lacked CD3/TCR surface expression and expanded with IL-7 and IL-15. Upon lentiviral transfer of a TCR for the WT1 tumor antigen, these TCR-edited cells expressed the new TCR at high levels, were easily expanded to near-purity, and proved superior in specific antigen recognition to matched TCR-transferred cells. In contrast to TCR-transferred cells, TCR edited lymphocytes did not mediate off-target reactivity while maintaining anti-tumor activity in vivo, thus demonstrating that complete editing of T-cell specificity generate tumor-specific lymphocytes with improved biosafety profile. PMID:22466705

  18. Horizontal transfer of a subtilisin gene from plants into an ancestor of the plant pathogenic fungal genus Colletotrichum.

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    Vinicio Danilo Armijos Jaramillo

    Full Text Available The genus Colletotrichum contains a large number of phytopathogenic fungi that produce enormous economic losses around the world. The effect of horizontal gene transfer (HGT has not been studied yet in these organisms. Inter-Kingdom HGT into fungal genomes has been reported in the past but knowledge about the HGT between plants and fungi is particularly limited. We describe a gene in the genome of several species of the genus Colletotrichum with a strong resemblance to subtilisins typically found in plant genomes. Subtilisins are an important group of serine proteases, widely distributed in all of the kingdoms of life. Our hypothesis is that the gene was acquired by Colletotrichum spp. through (HGT from plants to a Colletotrichum ancestor. We provide evidence to support this hypothesis in the form of phylogenetic analyses as well as a characterization of the similarity of the subtilisin at the primary, secondary and tertiary structural levels. The remarkable level of structural conservation of Colletotrichum plant-like subtilisin (CPLS with plant subtilisins and the differences with the rest of Colletotrichum subtilisins suggests the possibility of molecular mimicry. Our phylogenetic analysis indicates that the HGT event would have occurred approximately 150-155 million years ago, after the divergence of the Colletotrichum lineage from other fungi. Gene expression analysis shows that the gene is modulated during the infection of maize by C. graminicola suggesting that it has a role in plant disease. Furthermore, the upregulation of the CPLS coincides with the downregulation of several plant genes encoding subtilisins. Based on the known roles of subtilisins in plant pathogenic fungi and the gene expression pattern that we observed, we postulate that the CPLSs have an important role in plant infection.

  19. Horizontal transfer of a subtilisin gene from plants into an ancestor of the plant pathogenic fungal genus Colletotrichum. (United States)

    Armijos Jaramillo, Vinicio Danilo; Vargas, Walter Alberto; Sukno, Serenella Ana; Thon, Michael R


    The genus Colletotrichum contains a large number of phytopathogenic fungi that produce enormous economic losses around the world. The effect of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) has not been studied yet in these organisms. Inter-Kingdom HGT into fungal genomes has been reported in the past but knowledge about the HGT between plants and fungi is particularly limited. We describe a gene in the genome of several species of the genus Colletotrichum with a strong resemblance to subtilisins typically found in plant genomes. Subtilisins are an important group of serine proteases, widely distributed in all of the kingdoms of life. Our hypothesis is that the gene was acquired by Colletotrichum spp. through (HGT) from plants to a Colletotrichum ancestor. We provide evidence to support this hypothesis in the form of phylogenetic analyses as well as a characterization of the similarity of the subtilisin at the primary, secondary and tertiary structural levels. The remarkable level of structural conservation of Colletotrichum plant-like subtilisin (CPLS) with plant subtilisins and the differences with the rest of Colletotrichum subtilisins suggests the possibility of molecular mimicry. Our phylogenetic analysis indicates that the HGT event would have occurred approximately 150-155 million years ago, after the divergence of the Colletotrichum lineage from other fungi. Gene expression analysis shows that the gene is modulated during the infection of maize by C. graminicola suggesting that it has a role in plant disease. Furthermore, the upregulation of the CPLS coincides with the downregulation of several plant genes encoding subtilisins. Based on the known roles of subtilisins in plant pathogenic fungi and the gene expression pattern that we observed, we postulate that the CPLSs have an important role in plant infection.

  20. Operon Formation is Driven by Co-Regulation and Not by Horizontal Gene Transfer

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Price, Morgan N.; Huang, Katherine H.; Arkin, Adam P.; Alm, Eric J.


    Although operons are often subject to horizontal gene transfer (HGT), non-HGT genes are particularly likely to be in operons. To resolve this apparent discrepancy and to determine whether HGT is involved in operon formation, we examined the evolutionary history of the genes and operons in Escherichia coli K12. We show that genes that have homologs in distantly related bacteria but not in close relatives of E. coli (indicating HGTi) form new operons at about the same rates as native genes. Furthermore, genes in new operons are no more likely than other genes to have phylogenetic trees that are inconsistent with the species tree. In contrast, essential genes and ubiquitous genes without paralogs (genes believed to undergo HGT rarely) often form new operons. We conclude that HGT is not associated with operon formation, but instead promotes the prevalence of pre-existing operons. To explain operon formation, we propose that new operons reduce the amount of regulatory information required to specify optimal expression patterns. Consistent with this hypothesis, operons have greater amounts of conserved regulatory sequences than do individually transcribed genes.

  1. Generation of antigen-specific T cell immunity through T cell receptor gene transfer

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Coccoris, Miriam


    Cancer cells often escape the attack of immune cells because they originate from self-tissue. Through T cell receptor gene transfer it is possible to equip peripheral T cells with a desired specificity, and this strategy may be useful to generate tumor-specific T cells for the treatment of cancer in

  2. Generation of antigen-specific T cell immunity through T cell receptor gene transfer

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Coccoris, Miriam


    Cancer cells often escape the attack of immune cells because they originate from self-tissue. Through T cell receptor gene transfer it is possible to equip peripheral T cells with a desired specificity, and this strategy may be useful to generate tumor-specific T cells for the treatment of cancer in

  3. Role of Vibrio cholerae exochitinase ChiA2 in horizontal gene transfer. (United States)

    Mondal, Moumita; Chatterjee, Nabendu Sekhar


    Vibrio cholerae exochitinase ChiA2 plays a key role in acquisition of nutrients by chitin hydrolysis in the natural environment as well as in pathogenesis in the intestinal milieu. In this study we demonstrate the importance of ChiA2 in horizontal gene transfer in the natural environment. We found that the expression of ChiA2 and TfoX, the central regulator of V. cholerae horizontal gene transfer, varied with changes in environmental conditions. The activity of ChiA2 was also dependent on these conditions. In 3 different environmental conditions tested here, we observed that the supporting environmental condition for maximum expression and activity of ChiA2 was 20 °C, pH 5.5, and 100 mmol/L salinity in the presence of chitin. The same condition also induced TfoX expression and was favorable for horizontal gene transfer in V. cholerae. High-performance liquid chromatography analysis showed that ChiA2 released a significant amount of (GlcNAc)2 from chitin hydrolysis under the favorable condition. We hypothesized that under the favorable environmental condition, ChiA2 was upregulated and maximally active to produce a significant amount of (GlcNAc)2 from chitin. The same environmental condition also induced tfoX expression, followed by its translational activation by the (GlcNAc)2 produced, leading to efficient horizontal gene transfer.

  4. Modifier Genes for Mouse Phosphatidylinositol Transfer Protein alpha (vibrator) That Bypass Juvenile Lethality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Concepcion, Dorothy; Johannes, Frank; Lo, Yuan Hung; Yao, Jay; Fong, Jerry; Hamilton, Bruce A.


    Phosphatidylinositol transfer proteins (PITPs) mediate lipid signaling and membrane trafficking in eukaryotic cells. Loss-of-function mutations of the gene encoding PITP alpha in mice result in a range of dosage-sensitive phenotypes, including neurological dysfunction, neurodegeneration, and prematu

  5. Direct transfer of A20 gene into pancreas protected mice from streptozotocin-induced diabetes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lu-yang YU; Bo LIN; Zhen-lin ZHANG; Li-he GUO


    AIM: To investigate the efficiency of transfer of A20 gene into pancreas against STZ-induced diabetes. METHODS:PVP-plasmid mixture was directly transferred into the pancreatic parenchyma 2 d before STZ injection. The uptake of plasmid pcDNA3-LacZ or pcDNA3-A20 was detected by PCR and the expression of LacZ was confirmed by histological analysis with X-gal. A20 expression in the pancreas of pcDNA3-A20 transgenic mice was measured by RT-PCR and Westem blots. Urine amylase, NO generation, and histological examination were examined. RESULTS:Injection of PVP-plasmid mixture directly into the pancreatic parenchyma increased urine amylase concentration 16 h after operation and reversed it to nearly normal 36 h later. On d 33 LacZ expression could be found in spleen,duodenum, and islets. The development of diabetes was prevented by direct A20 gene transferring into the pancreas and A20-mediated protection was correlated with suppression of NO production. The insulitis was ameliorated in A20-treated mice. CONCLUSION: Injection of PVP-plasmid mixture directly into the pancreatic parenchyma led to target gene expression in islets. Direct transfer of A20 gene into the pancreas protected mice from STZ-induced diabetes.

  6. Utilizing cell-matrix interactions to modulate gene transfer to stem cells inside hyaluronic acid hydrogels. (United States)

    Gojgini, Shiva; Tokatlian, Talar; Segura, Tatiana


    The effective delivery of DNA locally would increase the applicability of gene therapy in tissue regeneration, where diseased tissue is to be repaired in situ. One promising approach is to use hydrogel scaffolds to encapsulate and deliver plasmid DNA in the form of nanoparticles to the diseased tissue, so that cells infiltrating the scaffold are transfected to induce regeneration. This study focuses on the design of a DNA nanoparticle-loaded hydrogel scaffold. In particular, this study focuses on understanding how cell-matrix interactions affect gene transfer to adult stem cells cultured inside matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) degradable hyaluronic acid (HA) hydrogel scaffolds. HA was cross-linked to form a hydrogel material using a MMP degradable peptide and Michael addition chemistry. Gene transfer inside these hydrogel materials was assessed as a function of polyplex nitrogen to phosphate ratio (N/P = 5 to 12), matrix stiffness (100-1700 Pa), RGD (Arg-Gly-Asp) concentration (10-400 μM), and RGD presentation (0.2-4.7 RGDs per HA molecule). All variables were found to affect gene transfer to mouse mensenchymal stem cells culture inside the DNA loaded hydrogels. As expected, higher N/P ratios lead to higher gene transfer efficiency but also higher toxicity; softer hydrogels resulted in higher transgene expression than stiffer hydrogels, and an intermediate RGD concentration and RGD clustering resulted in higher transgene expression. We believe that the knowledge gained through this in vitro model can be utilized to design better scaffold-mediated gene delivery for local gene therapy.

  7. Reliable transfer of transcriptional gene regulatory networks between taxonomically related organisms

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    Tauch Andreas


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Transcriptional regulation of gene activity is essential for any living organism. Transcription factors therefore recognize specific binding sites within the DNA to regulate the expression of particular target genes. The genome-scale reconstruction of the emerging regulatory networks is important for biotechnology and human medicine but cost-intensive, time-consuming, and impossible to perform for any species separately. By using bioinformatics methods one can partially transfer networks from well-studied model organisms to closely related species. However, the prediction quality is limited by the low level of evolutionary conservation of the transcription factor binding sites, even within organisms of the same genus. Results Here we present an integrated bioinformatics workflow that assures the reliability of transferred gene regulatory networks. Our approach combines three methods that can be applied on a large-scale: re-assessment of annotated binding sites, subsequent binding site prediction, and homology detection. A gene regulatory interaction is considered to be conserved if (1 the transcription factor, (2 the adjusted binding site, and (3 the target gene are conserved. The power of the approach is demonstrated by transferring gene regulations from the model organism Corynebacterium glutamicum to the human pathogens C. diphtheriae, C. jeikeium, and the biotechnologically relevant C. efficiens. For these three organisms we identified reliable transcriptional regulations for ~40% of the common transcription factors, compared to ~5% for which knowledge was available before. Conclusion Our results suggest that trustworthy genome-scale transfer of gene regulatory networks between organisms is feasible in general but still limited by the level of evolutionary conservation.

  8. Optimization of the uidA Gene Transfer of Rosa hybrida via Agrobacterium tumefaciens:an Assessment of Factors Influencing the Efficiency of Gene Transfer

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Gao Liping; Bao Manzhu


    To develop a transformation protocol of Rosa hybrida 'Samantha' via Agrobacterium tumefaciens, the authors examined the effect of different factors on T-DNA transfer by measuring transient expression levels of an intron-containing β-glucuronidase gene. The results indicate that explant, light condition, salt concentration and acetosyringone (AS) concentration in co-culture medium are the most important factors, and factors like co-culture temperature, co-culture period and bacteria density have a strong effect on the growth of bacteria and then T-DNA transfer. Optimized co-cultivation was performed by inoculation of embryogenic callus with bacteria at a density of OD600= 0.5-0.8 for 20 min and co-culture in darkness under 23 °C on medium with 1/2 MS salts and 300 μmol·L-1 AS for 3 d.

  9. The impact of gene duplication, insertion, deletion, lateral gene transfer and sequencing error on orthology inference: a simulation study. (United States)

    Dalquen, Daniel A; Altenhoff, Adrian M; Gonnet, Gaston H; Dessimoz, Christophe


    The identification of orthologous genes, a prerequisite for numerous analyses in comparative and functional genomics, is commonly performed computationally from protein sequences. Several previous studies have compared the accuracy of orthology inference methods, but simulated data has not typically been considered in cross-method assessment studies. Yet, while dependent on model assumptions, simulation-based benchmarking offers unique advantages: contrary to empirical data, all aspects of simulated data are known with certainty. Furthermore, the flexibility of simulation makes it possible to investigate performance factors in isolation of one another.Here, we use simulated data to dissect the performance of six methods for orthology inference available as standalone software packages (Inparanoid, OMA, OrthoInspector, OrthoMCL, QuartetS, SPIMAP) as well as two generic approaches (bidirectional best hit and reciprocal smallest distance). We investigate the impact of various evolutionary forces (gene duplication, insertion, deletion, and lateral gene transfer) and technological artefacts (ambiguous sequences) on orthology inference. We show that while gene duplication/loss and insertion/deletion are well handled by most methods (albeit for different trade-offs of precision and recall), lateral gene transfer disrupts all methods. As for ambiguous sequences, which might result from poor sequencing, assembly, or genome annotation, we show that they affect alignment score-based orthology methods more strongly than their distance-based counterparts.

  10. The impact of gene duplication, insertion, deletion, lateral gene transfer and sequencing error on orthology inference: a simulation study.

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    Daniel A Dalquen

    Full Text Available The identification of orthologous genes, a prerequisite for numerous analyses in comparative and functional genomics, is commonly performed computationally from protein sequences. Several previous studies have compared the accuracy of orthology inference methods, but simulated data has not typically been considered in cross-method assessment studies. Yet, while dependent on model assumptions, simulation-based benchmarking offers unique advantages: contrary to empirical data, all aspects of simulated data are known with certainty. Furthermore, the flexibility of simulation makes it possible to investigate performance factors in isolation of one another.Here, we use simulated data to dissect the performance of six methods for orthology inference available as standalone software packages (Inparanoid, OMA, OrthoInspector, OrthoMCL, QuartetS, SPIMAP as well as two generic approaches (bidirectional best hit and reciprocal smallest distance. We investigate the impact of various evolutionary forces (gene duplication, insertion, deletion, and lateral gene transfer and technological artefacts (ambiguous sequences on orthology inference. We show that while gene duplication/loss and insertion/deletion are well handled by most methods (albeit for different trade-offs of precision and recall, lateral gene transfer disrupts all methods. As for ambiguous sequences, which might result from poor sequencing, assembly, or genome annotation, we show that they affect alignment score-based orthology methods more strongly than their distance-based counterparts.

  11. Enhanced transfer of terrestrially derived carbon to the atmosphere in a flooding event (United States)

    Bianchi, Thomas S.; Garcia-Tigreros, Fenix; Yvon-Lewis, Shari A.; Shields, Michael; Mills, Heath J.; Butman, David; Osburn, Christopher; Raymond, Peter A.; Shank, G. Christopher; DiMarco, Steven F.; Walker, Nan; Kiel Reese, Brandi; Mullins-Perry, Ruth; Quigg, Antonietta; Aiken, George R.; Grossman, Ethan L.


    Rising CO2 concentration in the atmosphere, global climate change, and the sustainability of the Earth's biosphere are great societal concerns for the 21st century. Global climate change has, in part, resulted in a higher frequency of flooding events, which allow for greater exchange between soil/plant litter and aquatic carbon pools. Here we demonstrate that the summer 2011 flood in the Mississippi River basin, caused by extreme precipitation events, resulted in a “flushing” of terrestrially derived dissolved organic carbon (TDOC) to the northern Gulf of Mexico. Data from the lower Atchafalaya and Mississippi rivers showed that the DOC flux to the northern Gulf of Mexico during this flood was significantly higher than in previous years. We also show that consumption of radiocarbon-modern TDOC by bacteria in floodwaters in the lower Atchafalaya River and along the adjacent shelf contributed to northern Gulf shelf waters changing from a net sink to a net source of CO2 to the atmosphere in June and August 2011. This work shows that enhanced flooding, which may or may not be caused by climate change, can result in rapid losses of stored carbon in soils to the atmosphere via processes in aquatic ecosystems.

  12. Targeting a newly established spontaneous feline fibrosarcoma cell line by gene transfer.

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    Rounak Nande

    Full Text Available Fibrosarcoma is a deadly disease in cats and is significantly more often located at classical vaccine injections sites. More rare forms of spontaneous non-vaccination site (NSV fibrosarcomas have been described and have been found associated to genetic alterations. Purpose of this study was to compare the efficacy of adenoviral gene transfer in NVS fibrosarcoma. We isolated and characterized a NVS fibrosarcoma cell line (Cocca-6A from a spontaneous fibrosarcoma that occurred in a domestic calico cat. The feline cells were karyotyped and their chromosome number was counted using a Giemsa staining. Adenoviral gene transfer was verified by western blot analysis. Flow cytometry assay and Annexin-V were used to study cell-cycle changes and cell death of transduced cells. Cocca-6A fibrosarcoma cells were morphologically and cytogenetically characterized. Giemsa block staining of metaphase spreads of the Cocca-6A cells showed deletion of one of the E1 chromosomes, where feline p53 maps. Semi-quantitative PCR demonstrated reduction of p53 genomic DNA in the Cocca-6A cells. Adenoviral gene transfer determined a remarkable effect on the viability and growth of the Cocca-6A cells following single transduction with adenoviruses carrying Mda-7/IL-24 or IFN-γ or various combination of RB/p105, Ras-DN, IFN-γ, and Mda-7 gene transfer. Therapy for feline fibrosarcomas is often insufficient for long lasting tumor eradication. More gene transfer studies should be conducted in order to understand if these viral vectors could be applicable regardless the origin (spontaneous vs. vaccine induced of feline fibrosarcomas.

  13. Generation of hypoxanthine phosphoribosyltransferase gene knockout rabbits by homologous recombination and gene trapping through somatic cell nuclear transfer


    Mingru Yin; Weihua Jiang; Zhenfu Fang; Pengcheng Kong; Fengying Xing; Yao Li; Xuejin Chen; Shangang Li


    The rabbit is a common animal model that has been employed in studies on various human disorders, and the generation of genetically modified rabbit lines is highly desirable. Female rabbits have been successfully cloned from cumulus cells, and the somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) technology is well established. The present study generated hypoxanthine phosphoribosyltransferase (HPRT) gene knockout rabbits using recombinant adeno-associated virus-mediated homologous recombination and SCNT....

  14. Chromosomal nif Genes Transfer by Conjugation in Nitrogen Fixing Azotobacter chroococcum to Lactobacillus plantarium

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    Adel Kamal Khider


    Full Text Available To determine the possibility of transferring chromosomal nitrogen fixation genes (nif genes from Azotobacter chroococcum to Lactobacillus planetarium, a total of 72 Azotobacter chroococcum isolated from Erbil governorate, Iraq were culturally, morphologically and biochemically characterized. Genes for atmospheric nitrogen fixation, located on the chromosome of Azotobacter chroococcum isolates were transferred by conjugation process to a recipient Lactobacillus plantarium isolated from Erbil city soils. The chromosomal genes transferred were verified by analysis of the genomes of donor, recipient and putative transconjugants, by polymorphism of DNA bands obtained through amplification of nifH1, nifH2, nifH3, nifU and nifV genes by PCR technique. The transconjugant cells promote an efficient fixation of nitrogen in liquid cultures fixed 0.2% nitrogen, and in the soil as inoculums of wheat plants, fixed 0.31% nitrogen and solublized 11.71 ppm phosphorus, beside all advantages of Lactic acid bacteria, and probably to be used as inoculums for both nitrogen fixation and solublizing insoluble phosphorus components, and used as biofertilizers

  15. Increased in vitro and in vivo gene transfer by adenovirus vectors containing chimeric fiber proteins. (United States)

    Wickham, T J; Tzeng, E; Shears, L L; Roelvink, P W; Li, Y; Lee, G M; Brough, D E; Lizonova, A; Kovesdi, I


    Alteration of the natural tropism of adenovirus (Ad) will permit gene transfer into specific cell types and thereby greatly broaden the scope of target diseases that can be treated by using Ad. We have constructed two Ad vectors which contain modifications to the Ad fiber coat protein that redirect virus binding to either alpha(v) integrin [AdZ.F(RGD)] or heparan sulfate [AdZ.F(pK7)] cellular receptors. These vectors were constructed by a novel method involving E4 rescue of an E4-deficient Ad with a transfer vector containing both the E4 region and the modified fiber gene. AdZ.F(RGD) increased gene delivery to endothelial and smooth muscle cells expressing alpha(v) integrins. Likewise, AdZ.F(pK7) increased transduction 5- to 500-fold in multiple cell types lacking high levels of Ad fiber receptor, including macrophage, endothelial, smooth muscle, fibroblast, and T cells. In addition, AdZ.F(pK7) significantly increased gene transfer in vivo to vascular smooth muscle cells of the porcine iliac artery following balloon angioplasty. These vectors may therefore be useful in gene therapy for vascular restenosis or for targeting endothelial cells in tumors. Although binding to the fiber receptor still occurs with these vectors, they demonstrate the feasibility of tissue-specific receptor targeting in cells which express low levels of Ad fiber receptor.

  16. Tissue-engineering strategies to repair joint tissue in osteoarthritis: nonviral gene-transfer approaches. (United States)

    Madry, Henning; Cucchiarini, Magali


    Loss of articular cartilage is a common clinical consequence of osteoarthritis (OA). In the past decade, substantial progress in tissue engineering, nonviral gene transfer, and cell transplantation have provided the scientific foundation for generating cartilaginous constructs from genetically modified cells. Combining tissue engineering with overexpression of therapeutic genes enables immediate filling of a cartilage defect with an engineered construct that actively supports chondrogenesis. Several pioneering studies have proved that spatially defined nonviral overexpression of growth-factor genes in constructs of solid biomaterials or hydrogels is advantageous compared with gene transfer or scaffold alone, both in vitro and in vivo. Notably, these investigations were performed in models of focal cartilage defects, because advanced cartilage-repair strategies based on the principles of tissue engineering have not advanced sufficiently to enable resurfacing of extensively degraded cartilage as therapy for OA. These studies serve as prototypes for future technological developments, because they raise the possibility that cartilage constructs engineered from genetically modified chondrocytes providing autocrine and paracrine stimuli could similarly compensate for the loss of articular cartilage in OA. Because cartilage-tissue-engineering strategies are already used in the clinic, combining tissue engineering and nonviral gene transfer could prove a powerful approach to treat OA.

  17. Horizontal gene transfer facilitated the evolution of plant parasitic mechanisms in the oomycetes. (United States)

    Richards, Thomas A; Soanes, Darren M; Jones, Meredith D M; Vasieva, Olga; Leonard, Guy; Paszkiewicz, Konrad; Foster, Peter G; Hall, Neil; Talbot, Nicholas J


    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) can radically alter the genomes of microorganisms, providing the capacity to adapt to new lifestyles, environments, and hosts. However, the extent of HGT between eukaryotes is unclear. Using whole-genome, gene-by-gene phylogenetic analysis we demonstrate an extensive pattern of cross-kingdom HGT between fungi and oomycetes. Comparative genomics, including the de novo genome sequence of Hyphochytrium catenoides, a free-living sister of the oomycetes, shows that these transfers largely converge within the radiation of oomycetes that colonize plant tissues. The repertoire of HGTs includes a large number of putatively secreted proteins; for example, 7.6% of the secreted proteome of the sudden oak death parasite Phytophthora ramorum has been acquired from fungi by HGT. Transfers include gene products with the capacity to break down plant cell walls and acquire sugars, nucleic acids, nitrogen, and phosphate sources from the environment. Predicted HGTs also include proteins implicated in resisting plant defense mechanisms and effector proteins for attacking plant cells. These data are consistent with the hypothesis that some oomycetes became successful plant parasites by multiple acquisitions of genes from fungi.

  18. Pyrosequencing of antibiotic-contaminated river sediments reveals high levels of resistance and gene transfer elements.

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    Erik Kristiansson

    Full Text Available The high and sometimes inappropriate use of antibiotics has accelerated the development of antibiotic resistance, creating a major challenge for the sustainable treatment of infections world-wide. Bacterial communities often respond to antibiotic selection pressure by acquiring resistance genes, i.e. mobile genetic elements that can be shared horizontally between species. Environmental microbial communities maintain diverse collections of resistance genes, which can be mobilized into pathogenic bacteria. Recently, exceptional environmental releases of antibiotics have been documented, but the effects on the promotion of resistance genes and the potential for horizontal gene transfer have yet received limited attention. In this study, we have used culture-independent shotgun metagenomics to investigate microbial communities in river sediments exposed to waste water from the production of antibiotics in India. Our analysis identified very high levels of several classes of resistance genes as well as elements for horizontal gene transfer, including integrons, transposons and plasmids. In addition, two abundant previously uncharacterized resistance plasmids were identified. The results suggest that antibiotic contamination plays a role in the promotion of resistance genes and their mobilization from environmental microbes to other species and eventually to human pathogens. The entire life-cycle of antibiotic substances, both before, under and after usage, should therefore be considered to fully evaluate their role in the promotion of resistance.

  19. Phylogenetic evidence for lateral gene transfer in the intestine of marine iguanas.

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    David M Nelson

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Lateral gene transfer (LGT appears to promote genotypic and phenotypic variation in microbial communities in a range of environments, including the mammalian intestine. However, the extent and mechanisms of LGT in intestinal microbial communities of non-mammalian hosts remains poorly understood. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We sequenced two fosmid inserts obtained from a genomic DNA library derived from an agar-degrading enrichment culture of marine iguana fecal material. The inserts harbored 16S rRNA genes that place the organism from which they originated within Clostridium cluster IV, a well documented group that habitats the mammalian intestinal tract. However, sequence analysis indicates that 52% of the protein-coding genes on the fosmids have top BLASTX hits to bacterial species that are not members of Clostridium cluster IV, and phylogenetic analysis suggests that at least 10 of 44 coding genes on the fosmids may have been transferred from Clostridium cluster XIVa to cluster IV. The fosmids encoded four transposase-encoding genes and an integrase-encoding gene, suggesting their involvement in LGT. In addition, several coding genes likely involved in sugar transport were probably acquired through LGT. CONCLUSION: Our phylogenetic evidence suggests that LGT may be common among phylogenetically distinct members of the phylum Firmicutes inhabiting the intestinal tract of marine iguanas.

  20. The influence of gene transfer on the lactic acid bacteria evolution

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    Višnja Bačun-Družina


    Full Text Available In the case of preparing various dairy products, the exploitation of lactic acid bacteria has been essential in the course of past millennia in all known nations. Numerous comparative analyses of gene and genome sequences reveal that the exchange of genetic material within and between bacterial species is far more general and frequent than has previously been thought. Consequently, the horizontal gene transfer between distant species or within the same species is an important factor in the Lactobacillales evolution. Knowledge about the exchange of lactobacillus genetic information through horizontal gene transfer, mobile genetic elements, and its evolution is very important due to characterizations and stability maintenance of autochthonous as well as industrial lactic acid bacteria strains in dairy products that benefit human health.

  1. Networks of lexical borrowing and lateral gene transfer in language and genome evolution. (United States)

    List, Johann-Mattis; Nelson-Sathi, Shijulal; Geisler, Hans; Martin, William


    Like biological species, languages change over time. As noted by Darwin, there are many parallels between language evolution and biological evolution. Insights into these parallels have also undergone change in the past 150 years. Just like genes, words change over time, and language evolution can be likened to genome evolution accordingly, but what kind of evolution? There are fundamental differences between eukaryotic and prokaryotic evolution. In the former, natural variation entails the gradual accumulation of minor mutations in alleles. In the latter, lateral gene transfer is an integral mechanism of natural variation. The study of language evolution using biological methods has attracted much interest of late, most approaches focusing on language tree construction. These approaches may underestimate the important role that borrowing plays in language evolution. Network approaches that were originally designed to study lateral gene transfer may provide more realistic insights into the complexities of language evolution.

  2. Adenovirus-mediated transfer of RA538 gene and its antitumor effect

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    程金科; 林晨; 隗玥; 张雪艳; 邢嵘; 牟巨伟; 王秀琴; 吴旻


    The RA538 cDNA was transferred into human ovarian cancer cell line SK-OV-3 and human melanoma cell line WM-983A by its recombinant adenoviral vector constructed through homologous recombination. It was demonstrated that the recombinant adenovirus could transfer RA538 gene with high efficiency, and could obviously inhibit tumor growth, with the inhibiting rates of 85% and 73% respectively, at the same time greatly repress the colony forming ability of the cells. The therapeutic experiments on transplanted subcutaneous tumor model in nude mice demonstrated that RA538 could significantly inhibit tumor growth. Flow cytometry and DNA fragmentation analysis indicated that RA538 could induce the cell cycle G1 arrest/apoptosis of the tumor cells. The expression of cmyc gene was found pronouncedly reduced by Western blot analysis. These results suggest that the RA538 recombinant adenovirus could be a promising drug in cancer gene therapy.

  3. Evidence for the intense exchange of MazG in marine cyanophages by horizontal gene transfer.

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    Michael J Bryan

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: S-PM2 is a phage capable of infecting strains of unicellular cyanobacteria belonging to the genus Synechococcus. S-PM2, like other myoviruses infecting marine cyanobacteria, encodes a number of bacterial-like genes. Amongst these genes is one encoding a MazG homologue that is hypothesized to be involved in the adaption of the infected host for production of progeny phage. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: This study focuses on establishing the occurrence of mazG homologues in other cyanophages isolated from different oceanic locations. Degenerate PCR primers were designed using the mazG gene of S-PM2. The mazG gene was found to be widely distributed and highly conserved among Synechococcus myoviruses and podoviruses from diverse oceanic provinces. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This study provides evidence of a globally connected cyanophage gene pool, the cyanophage mazG gene having a small effective population size indicative of rapid lateral gene transfer despite being present in a substantial fraction of cyanophage. The Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus phage mazG genes do not cluster with the host mazG gene, suggesting that their primary hosts are not the source of the mazG gene.

  4. SUMO-1 gene transfer improves cardiac function in a large-animal model of heart failure. (United States)

    Tilemann, Lisa; Lee, Ahyoung; Ishikawa, Kiyotake; Aguero, Jaume; Rapti, Kleopatra; Santos-Gallego, Carlos; Kohlbrenner, Erik; Fish, Kenneth M; Kho, Changwon; Hajjar, Roger J


    Recently, the impact of small ubiquitin-related modifier 1 (SUMO-1) on the regulation and preservation of sarcoplasmic reticulum calcium adenosine triphosphatase (SERCA2a) function was discovered. The amount of myocardial SUMO-1 is decreased in failing hearts, and its knockdown results in severe heart failure (HF) in mice. In a previous study, we showed that SUMO-1 gene transfer substantially improved cardiac function in a murine model of pressure overload-induced HF. Toward clinical translation, we evaluated in this study the effects of SUMO-1 gene transfer in a swine model of ischemic HF. One month after balloon occlusion of the proximal left anterior descending artery followed by reperfusion, the animals were randomized to receive either SUMO-1 at two doses, SERCA2a, or both by adeno-associated vector type 1 (AAV1) gene transfer via antegrade coronary infusion. Control animals received saline infusions. After gene delivery, there was a significant increase in the maximum rate of pressure rise [dP/dt(max)] that was most pronounced in the group that received both SUMO-1 and SERCA2a. The left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) improved after high-dose SUMO-1 with or without SERCA2a gene delivery, whereas there was a decline in LVEF in the animals receiving saline. Furthermore, the dilatation of LV volumes was prevented in the treatment groups. SUMO-1 gene transfer therefore improved cardiac function and stabilized LV volumes in a large-animal model of HF. These results support the critical role of SUMO-1 in SERCA2a function and underline the therapeutic potential of SUMO-1 for HF patients.

  5. Homologous recombination mediates functional recovery of dysferlin deficiency following AAV5 gene transfer.

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    William E Grose

    Full Text Available The dysferlinopathies comprise a group of untreatable muscle disorders including limb girdle muscular dystrophy type 2B, Miyoshi myopathy, distal anterior compartment syndrome, and rigid spine syndrome. As with other forms of muscular dystrophy, adeno-associated virus (AAV gene transfer is a particularly auspicious treatment strategy, however the size of the DYSF cDNA (6.5 kb negates packaging into traditional AAV serotypes known to express well in muscle (i.e. rAAV1, 2, 6, 8, 9. Potential advantages of a full cDNA versus a mini-gene include: maintaining structural-functional protein domains, evading protein misfolding, and avoiding novel epitopes that could be immunogenic. AAV5 has demonstrated unique plasticity with regards to packaging capacity and recombination of virions containing homologous regions of cDNA inserts has been implicated in the generation of full-length transcripts. Herein we show for the first time in vivo that homologous recombination following AAV5.DYSF gene transfer leads to the production of full length transcript and protein. Moreover, gene transfer of full-length dysferlin protein in dysferlin deficient mice resulted in expression levels sufficient to correct functional deficits in the diaphragm and importantly in skeletal muscle membrane repair. Intravascular regional gene transfer through the femoral artery produced high levels of transduction and enabled targeting of specific muscle groups affected by the dysferlinopathies setting the stage for potential translation to clinical trials. We provide proof of principle that AAV5 mediated delivery of dysferlin is a highly promising strategy for treatment of dysferlinopathies and has far-reaching implications for the therapeutic delivery of other large genes.

  6. Information transfer and synchronization among the scales of climate variability: clues for understanding anomalies and extreme events? (United States)

    Palus, Milan


    Deeper understanding of complex dynamics of the Earth atmosphere and climate is inevitable for sustainable development, mitigation and adaptation strategies for global change and for prediction of and resilience against extreme events. Traditional (linear) approaches cannot explain or even detect nonlinear interactions of dynamical processes evolving on multiple spatial and temporal scales. Combination of nonlinear dynamics and information theory explains synchronization as a process of adjustment of information rates [1] and causal relations (à la Granger) as information transfer [2]. Information born in dynamical complexity or information transferred among systems on a way to synchronization might appear as an abstract quantity, however, information transfer is tied to a transfer of mass and energy, as demonstrated in a recent study using directed (causal) climate networks [2]. Recently, an information transfer across scales of atmospheric dynamics has been observed [3]. In particular, a climate oscillation with the period around 7-8 years has been identified as a factor influencing variability of surface air temperature (SAT) on shorter time scales. Its influence on the amplitude of the SAT annual cycle was estimated in the range 0.7-1.4 °C and the effect on the overall variability of the SAT anomalies (SATA) leads to the changes 1.5-1.7 °C in the annual SATA means. The strongest effect of the 7-8 year cycle was observed in the winter SATA means where it reaches 4-5 °C in central European station and reanalysis data [4]. In the dynamics of El Niño-Southern Oscillation, three principal time scales have been identified: the annual cycle (AC), the quasibiennial (QB) mode(s) and the low-frequency (LF) variability. An intricate causal network of information flows among these modes helps to understand the occurrence of extreme El Niño events, characterized by synchronization of the QB modes and AC, and modulation of the QB amplitude by the LF mode. The latter

  7. Epigenetic genes and emotional reactivity to daily life events: a multi-step gene-environment interaction study.

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    Ehsan Pishva

    Full Text Available Recent human and animal studies suggest that epigenetic mechanisms mediate the impact of environment on development of mental disorders. Therefore, we hypothesized that polymorphisms in epigenetic-regulatory genes impact stress-induced emotional changes. A multi-step, multi-sample gene-environment interaction analysis was conducted to test whether 31 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs in epigenetic-regulatory genes, i.e. three DNA methyltransferase genes DNMT1, DNMT3A, DNMT3B, and methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR, moderate emotional responses to stressful and pleasant stimuli in daily life as measured by Experience Sampling Methodology (ESM. In the first step, main and interactive effects were tested in a sample of 112 healthy individuals. Significant associations in this discovery sample were then investigated in a population-based sample of 434 individuals for replication. SNPs showing significant effects in both the discovery and replication samples were subsequently tested in three other samples of: (i 85 unaffected siblings of patients with psychosis, (ii 110 patients with psychotic disorders, and iii 126 patients with a history of major depressive disorder. Multilevel linear regression analyses showed no significant association between SNPs and negative affect or positive affect. No SNPs moderated the effect of pleasant stimuli on positive affect. Three SNPs of DNMT3A (rs11683424, rs1465764, rs1465825 and 1 SNP of MTHFR (rs1801131 moderated the effect of stressful events on negative affect. Only rs11683424 of DNMT3A showed consistent directions of effect in the majority of the 5 samples. These data provide the first evidence that emotional responses to daily life stressors may be moderated by genetic variation in the genes involved in the epigenetic machinery.

  8. Lateral Transfer of the Denitrification Pathway Genes among Thermus thermophilus Strains▿ (United States)

    Alvarez, Laura; Bricio, Carlos; José Gómez, Manuel; Berenguer, José


    Nitrate respiration is a common and strain-specific property in Thermus thermophilus encoded by the nitrate respiration conjugative element (NCE) that can be laterally transferred by conjugation. In contrast, nitrite respiration and further denitrification steps are restricted to a few isolates of this species. These later steps of the denitrification pathway are under the regulatory control of an NCE-encoded transcription factor, but nothing is known about their coding sequences or its putative genetic linkage to the NCE. In this study we examine the genetic linkage between nitrate and nitrite respiration through lateral gene transfer (LGT) assays and describe a cluster of genes encoding the nitrite-nitric oxide respiration in T. thermophilus PRQ25. We show that the whole denitrification pathway can be transferred from the denitrificant strain PRQ25 to an aerobic strain, HB27, and that the genes coding for nitrite and nitric oxide respiration are encoded near the NCE. Sequence data from the draft genome of PRQ25 confirmed these results and allowed us to describe the most compact nor-nir cluster known thus far and to demonstrate the expression and activities of the encoded enzymes in the HB27 denitrificant derivatives obtained by LGT. We conclude that this NCE nor-nir supercluster constitutes a whole denitrification island that can be spread by lateral transfer among Thermus thermophilus strains. PMID:21169443

  9. Frequent gene conversion events between the X and Y homologous chromosomal regions in primates

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    Hirai Hirohisa


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Mammalian sex-chromosomes originated from a pair of autosomes. A step-wise cessation of recombination is necessary for the proper maintenance of sex-determination and, consequently, generates a four strata structure on the X chromosome. Each stratum shows a specific per-site nucleotide sequence difference (p-distance between the X and Y chromosomes, depending on the time of recombination arrest. Stratum 4 covers the distal half of the human X chromosome short arm and the p-distance of the stratum is ~10%, on average. However, a 100-kb region, which includes KALX and VCX, in the middle of stratum 4 shows a significantly lower p-distance (1-5%, suggesting frequent sequence exchanges or gene conversions between the X and Y chromosomes in humans. To examine the evolutionary mechanism for this low p-distance region, sequences of a corresponding region including KALX/Y from seven species of non-human primates were analyzed. Results Phylogenetic analysis of this low p-distance region in humans and non-human primate species revealed that gene conversion like events have taken place at least ten times after the divergence of New World monkeys and Catarrhini (i.e., Old World monkeys and hominoids. A KALY-converted KALX allele in white-handed gibbons also suggests a possible recent gene conversion between the X and Y chromosomes. In these primate sequences, the proximal boundary of this low p-distance region is located in a LINE element shared between the X and Y chromosomes, suggesting the involvement of this element in frequent gene conversions. Together with a palindrome on the Y chromosome, a segmental palindrome structure on the X chromosome at the distal boundary near VCX, in humans and chimpanzees, may mediate frequent sequence exchanges between X and Y chromosomes. Conclusion Gene conversion events between the X and Y homologous regions have been suggested, mainly in humans. Here, we found frequent gene conversions in the

  10. An adenovirus vector incorporating carbohydrate binding domains utilizes glycans for gene transfer.

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    Julius W Kim

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Vectors based on human adenovirus serotype 5 (HAdV-5 continue to show promise as delivery vehicles for cancer gene therapy. Nevertheless, it has become clear that therapeutic benefit is directly linked to tumor-specific vector localization, highlighting the need for tumor-targeted gene delivery. Aberrant glycosylation of cell surface glycoproteins and glycolipids is a central feature of malignant transformation, and tumor-associated glycoforms are recognized as cancer biomarkers. On this basis, we hypothesized that cancer-specific cell-surface glycans could be the basis of a novel paradigm in HAdV-5-based vector targeting. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: As a first step toward this goal, we constructed a novel HAdV-5 vector encoding a unique chimeric fiber protein that contains the tandem carbohydrate binding domains of the fiber protein of the NADC-1 strain of porcine adenovirus type 4 (PAdV-4. This glycan-targeted vector displays augmented CAR-independent gene transfer in cells with low CAR expression. Further, we show that gene transfer is markedly decreased in cells with genetic glycosylation defects and by inhibitors of glycosylation in normal cells. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: These data provide the initial proof-of-concept for HAdV-5 vector-mediated gene delivery based on the presence of cell-surface carbohydrates. Further development of this new targeting paradigm could provide targeted gene delivery based on vector recognition of disease-specific glycan biomarkers.

  11. Evidence for extensive horizontal gene transfer from the draft genome of a tardigrade. (United States)

    Boothby, Thomas C; Tenlen, Jennifer R; Smith, Frank W; Wang, Jeremy R; Patanella, Kiera A; Nishimura, Erin Osborne; Tintori, Sophia C; Li, Qing; Jones, Corbin D; Yandell, Mark; Messina, David N; Glasscock, Jarret; Goldstein, Bob


    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT), or the transfer of genes between species, has been recognized recently as more pervasive than previously suspected. Here, we report evidence for an unprecedented degree of HGT into an animal genome, based on a draft genome of a tardigrade, Hypsibius dujardini. Tardigrades are microscopic eight-legged animals that are famous for their ability to survive extreme conditions. Genome sequencing, direct confirmation of physical linkage, and phylogenetic analysis revealed that a large fraction of the H. dujardini genome is derived from diverse bacteria as well as plants, fungi, and Archaea. We estimate that approximately one-sixth of tardigrade genes entered by HGT, nearly double the fraction found in the most extreme cases of HGT into animals known to date. Foreign genes have supplemented, expanded, and even replaced some metazoan gene families within the tardigrade genome. Our results demonstrate that an unexpectedly large fraction of an animal genome can be derived from foreign sources. We speculate that animals that can survive extremes may be particularly prone to acquiring foreign genes.

  12. Targeted disruption of Ataxia-telangiectasia mutated gene in miniature pigs by somatic cell nuclear transfer

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    Kim, Young June; Ahn, Kwang Sung; Kim, Minjeong; Kim, Min Ju; Park, Sang-Min; Ryu, Junghyun; Ahn, Jin Seop; Heo, Soon Young; Kang, Jee Hyun; Choi, You Jung [Department of Nanobiomedical Science and BK21 PLUS NBM Global Research Center for Regenerative Medicine, Dankook University, Cheonan (Korea, Republic of); Choi, Seong-Jun [Institute of Tissue Regeneration Engineering, Dankook University, Cheonan (Korea, Republic of); Shim, Hosup, E-mail: [Department of Nanobiomedical Science and BK21 PLUS NBM Global Research Center for Regenerative Medicine, Dankook University, Cheonan (Korea, Republic of); Institute of Tissue Regeneration Engineering, Dankook University, Cheonan (Korea, Republic of); Department of Physiology, Dankook University School of Medicine, Cheonan (Korea, Republic of)


    Highlights: • ATM gene-targeted pigs were produced by somatic cell nuclear transfer. • A novel large animal model for ataxia telangiectasia was developed. • The new model may provide an alternative to the mouse model. - Abstract: Ataxia telangiectasia (A-T) is a recessive autosomal disorder associated with pleiotropic phenotypes, including progressive cerebellar degeneration, gonad atrophy, and growth retardation. Even though A-T is known to be caused by the mutations in the Ataxia telangiectasia mutated (ATM) gene, the correlation between abnormal cellular physiology caused by ATM mutations and the multiple symptoms of A-T disease has not been clearly determined. None of the existing ATM mouse models properly reflects the extent to which neurological degeneration occurs in human. In an attempt to provide a large animal model for A-T, we produced gene-targeted pigs with mutations in the ATM gene by somatic cell nuclear transfer. The disrupted allele in the ATM gene of cloned piglets was confirmed via PCR and Southern blot analysis. The ATM gene-targeted pigs generated in the present study may provide an alternative to the current mouse model for the study of mechanisms underlying A-T disorder and for the development of new therapies.

  13. Evidence for extensive horizontal gene transfer from the draft genome of a tardigrade (United States)

    Boothby, Thomas C.; Tenlen, Jennifer R.; Smith, Frank W.; Wang, Jeremy R.; Patanella, Kiera A.; Osborne Nishimura, Erin; Tintori, Sophia C.; Li, Qing; Jones, Corbin D.; Yandell, Mark; Glasscock, Jarret; Goldstein, Bob


    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT), or the transfer of genes between species, has been recognized recently as more pervasive than previously suspected. Here, we report evidence for an unprecedented degree of HGT into an animal genome, based on a draft genome of a tardigrade, Hypsibius dujardini. Tardigrades are microscopic eight-legged animals that are famous for their ability to survive extreme conditions. Genome sequencing, direct confirmation of physical linkage, and phylogenetic analysis revealed that a large fraction of the H. dujardini genome is derived from diverse bacteria as well as plants, fungi, and Archaea. We estimate that approximately one-sixth of tardigrade genes entered by HGT, nearly double the fraction found in the most extreme cases of HGT into animals known to date. Foreign genes have supplemented, expanded, and even replaced some metazoan gene families within the tardigrade genome. Our results demonstrate that an unexpectedly large fraction of an animal genome can be derived from foreign sources. We speculate that animals that can survive extremes may be particularly prone to acquiring foreign genes. PMID:26598659

  14. Cumulus-specific genes are transcriptionally silent following somatic cell nuclear transfer in a mouse model

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    This study investigated whether four cumulus-specific genes: follicular stimulating hormone receptor (FSHr), hyaluronan synthase 2 (Has2), prostaglandin synthase 2 (Ptgs2) and steroidogenic acute regulator protein (Star), were correctly reprogrammed to be transcriptionally silent following somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) in a murine model. Cumulus cells of C57×CBA F1 female mouse were injected into enucleated oocytes, followed by activation in 10 μmol/L strontium chloride for 5 h and subsequent in vitro culture up to the blastocyst stage. Expression of cumulus-specific genes in SCNT-derived embryos at 2-cell, 4-cell and day 4.5 blastocyst stages was compared with corresponding in vivo fertilized embryos by real-time PCR. It was demonstrated that immediately after the first cell cycle, SCNT-derived 2-cell stage embryos did not express all four cumulus-specific genes, which continually remained silent at the 4-cell and blastocyst stages. It is therefore concluded that all four cumulus-specific genes were correctly reprogrammed to be silent following nuclear transfer with cumulus donor cells in the mouse model. This would imply that the poor preimplantation developmental competence of SCNT embryos derived from cumulus cells is due to incomplete reprogramming of other embryonic genes, rather than cumulus-specific genes.

  15. Ionizing and ultraviolet radiation enhances the efficiency of DNA mediated gene transfer in vitro

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    Perez, C.F.


    The enhancement effects of ionizing and non-ionizing radiation on the efficiency of DNA mediated gene transfer were studied. Confluent Rat-2 cells were transfected with purified SV40 viral DNA, irradiated with either X-rays or ultraviolet, trypsinized, plated, and assayed for the formation of foci on Rat-2 monolayers. Both ionizing and ultraviolet radiation enhanced the frequency of A-gene transformants/survivor compared to unirradiated transfected cells. These enhancements were non-linear and dose dependent. A recombinant plasmid, pOT-TK5, was constructed that contained the SV40 virus A-gene and the Herpes Simplex virus (HSV) thymidine kinase (TK) gene. Confluent Rat-2 cells transfected with pOT-TK5 DNA and then immediately irradiated with either X-rays or 330 MeV/amu argon particles at the Berkeley Bevalac showed a higher frequency of HAT/sup +/ colonies/survivor than unirradiated transfected cells. Rat-2 cells transfected with the plasmid, pTK2, containing only the HSV TK-gene were enhanced for TK-transformation by both X-rays and ultraviolet radiation. The results demonstrate that radiation enhancement of the efficiency of DNA mediated gene transfer is not explained by increased nuclear uptake of the transfected DNA. Radiation increases the competence of the transfected cell population for genetic transformation. Three models for this increased competence are presented. The targeted integration model, the inducible recombination model, the partition model, and the utilization of DNA mediated gene transfer for DNA repair studies are discussed. 465 references.

  16. Horizontal gene transfer regulation in bacteria as a "spandrel" of DNA repair mechanisms.

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    Saliou Fall

    Full Text Available Horizontal gene transfer (HGT is recognized as the major force for bacterial genome evolution. Yet, numerous questions remain about the transferred genes, their function, quantity and frequency. The extent to which genetic transformation by exogenous DNA has occurred over evolutionary time was initially addressed by an in silico approach using the complete genome sequence of the Ralstonia solanacearum GMI1000 strain. Methods based on phylogenetic reconstruction of prokaryote homologous genes families detected 151 genes (13.3% of foreign origin in the R. solanacearum genome and tentatively identified their bacterial origin. These putative transfers were analyzed in comparison to experimental transformation tests involving 18 different genomic DNA positions in the genome as sites for homologous or homeologous recombination. Significant transformation frequency differences were observed among these positions tested regardless of the overall genomic divergence of the R. solanacearum strains tested as recipients. The genomic positions containing the putative exogenous DNA were not systematically transformed at the highest frequencies. The two genomic "hot spots", which contain recA and mutS genes, exhibited transformation frequencies from 2 to more than 4 orders of magnitude higher than positions associated with other genes depending on the recipient strain. These results support the notion that the bacterial cell is equipped with active mechanisms to modulate acquisition of new DNA in different genomic positions. Bio-informatics study correlated recombination "hot-spots" to the presence of Chi-like signature sequences with which recombination might be preferentially initiated. The fundamental role of HGT is certainly not limited to the critical impact that the very rare foreign genes acquired mainly by chance can have on the bacterial adaptation potential. The frequency to which HGT with homologous and homeologous DNA happens in the environment

  17. [Advances in molecular mechanisms of bacterial resistance caused by stress-induced transfer of resistance genes--a review]. (United States)

    Sun, Dongchang; Wang, Bing; Zhu, Lihong


    The transfer of resistance gene is one of the most important causes of bacterial resistance. Recent studies reveal that stresses induce the transfer of antibiotic resistance gene through multiple mechanisms. DNA damage stresses trigger bacterial SOS response and induce the transfer of resistance gene mediated by conjugative DNA. Antibiotic stresses induce natural bacterial competence for transformation in some bacteria which lack the SOS system. In addition, our latest studies show that the general stress response regulator RpoS regulates a novel type of resistance gene transfer which is mediated by double-stranded plasmid DNA and occurs exclusively on the solid surface. In this review, we summarized recent advances in SOS dependent and independent stress-induced DNA transfer which is mediated by conjugation and transformation respectively, and the transfer of double-stranded plasmid DNA on the solid surface which is regulated by RpoS. We propose that future work should address how stresses activate the key regulators and how these regulators control the expression of gene transfer related genes. Answers to the above questions would pave the way for searching for candidate targets for controlling bacterial resistance resulted from the transfer of antibiotic genes.

  18. Evaluation of engineered AAV capsids for hepatic factor IX gene transfer in murine and canine models. (United States)

    Markusic, David M; Nichols, Timothy C; Merricks, Elizabeth P; Palaschak, Brett; Zolotukhin, Irene; Marsic, Damien; Zolotukhin, Sergei; Srivastava, Arun; Herzog, Roland W


    Adeno-associated virus (AAV) gene therapy vectors have shown the best outcomes in human clinical studies for the treatment of genetic diseases such as hemophilia. However, these pivotal investigations have also identified several challenges. For example, high vector doses are often used for hepatic gene transfer, and cytotoxic T lymphocyte responses against viral capsid may occur. Therefore, achieving therapy at reduced vector doses and other strategies to reduce capsid antigen presentation are desirable. We tested several engineered AAV capsids for factor IX (FIX) expression for the treatment of hemophilia B by hepatic gene transfer. These capsids lack potential phosphorylation or ubiquitination sites, or had been generated through molecular evolution. AAV2 capsids lacking either a single lysine residue or 3 tyrosine residues directed substantially higher coagulation FIX expression in mice compared to wild-type sequence or other mutations. In hemophilia B dogs, however, expression from the tyrosine-mutant vector was merely comparable to historical data on AAV2. Evolved AAV2-LiC capsid was highly efficient in hemophilia B mice but lacked efficacy in a hemophilia B dog. Several alternative strategies for capsid modification improve the in vivo performance of AAV vectors in hepatic gene transfer for correction of hemophilia. However, capsid optimization solely in mouse liver may not predict efficacy in other species and thus is of limited translational utility.

  19. Plant-Agrobacterium interaction mediated by ethylene and super-Agrobacterium conferring efficient gene transfer ability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Satoko eNonaka


    Full Text Available Agrobacterium tumefaciens has a unique ability to transfer genes into plant genomes. This ability has been utilized for plant genetic engineering. However, the efficiency is not sufficient for all plant species. Several studies have shown that ethylene decreased the Agrobacterium-mediated transformation frequency. Thus, A. tumefaciens with an ability to suppress ethylene evolution would increase the efficiency of Agrobacterium-mediated transformation. Some studies showed that plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR can reduce ethylene levels in plants through 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid (ACC deaminase, which cleaves the ethylene precursor ACC into α-ketobutyrate and ammonia, resulting in reduced ethylene production. The whole genome sequence data showed that A. tumefaciens does not possess an ACC deaminase gene in its genome. Therefore, providing ACC deaminase activity to the bacteria would improve gene transfer. As expected, A. tumefaciens with ACC deaminase activity, designated as super-Agrobacterium, could suppress ethylene evolution and increase the gene transfer efficiency in several plant species. In this review, we summarize plant–Agrobacterium interactions and their applications for improving Agrobacterium-mediated genetic engineering techniques via super-Agrobacterium.

  20. Adverse events in families with hypertrophic or dilated cardiomyopathy and mutations in the MYBPC3 gene

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    Lehrke Stephanie


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Mutations in MYBPC3 encoding myosin binding protein C belong to the most frequent causes of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM and may also lead to dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM. MYBPC3 mutations initially were considered to cause a benign form of HCM. The aim of this study was to examine the clinical outcome of patients and their relatives with 18 different MYBPC3 mutations. Methods 87 patients with HCM and 71 patients with DCM were screened for MYBPC3 mutations by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and sequencing. Close relatives of mutation carriers were genotyped for the respective mutation. Relatives with mutation were then evaluated by echocardiography and magnetic resonance imaging. A detailed family history regarding adverse clinical events was recorded. Results In 16 HCM (18.4% and two DCM (2.8% index patients a mutation was detected. Seven mutations were novel. Mutation carriers exhibited no additional mutations in genes MYH7, TNNT2, TNNI3, ACTC and TPM1. Including relatives of twelve families, a total number of 42 mutation carriers was identified of which eleven (26.2% had at least one adverse event. Considering the twelve families and six single patients with mutations, 45 individuals with cardiomyopathy and nine with borderline phenotype were identified. Among the 45 patients, 23 (51.1% suffered from an adverse event. In eleven patients of seven families an unexplained sudden death was reported at the age between 13 and 67 years. Stroke or a transient ischemic attack occurred in six patients of five families. At least one adverse event occurred in eleven of twelve families. Conclusion MYBPC3 mutations can be associated with cardiac events such as progressive heart failure, stroke and sudden death even at younger age. Therefore, patients with MYBPC3 mutations require thorough clinical risk assessment.

  1. Stress Transfer Processes during Great Plate Boundary Thrusting Events: A Study from the Andaman and Nicobar Segments (United States)

    Andrade, V.; Rajendran, K.


    The response of subduction zones to large earthquakes varies along their strike, both during the interseismic and post-seismic periods. The December 26, 2004 earthquake nucleated at 3° N latitude and its rupture propagated northward, along the Andaman-Sumatra subduction zone, terminating at 15°N. Rupture speed was estimated at about 2.0 km per second in the northern part under the Andaman region and 2.5 - 2.7 km per second under southern Nicobar and North Sumatra. We have examined the pre and post-2004 seismicity to understand the stress transfer processes within the subducting plate, in the Andaman (10° - 15° N ) and Nicobar (5° - 10° N) segments. The seismicity pattern in these segments shows distinctive characteristics associated with the outer rise, accretionary prism and the spreading ridge, all of which are relatively better developed in the Andaman segment. The Ninety East ridge and the Sumatra Fault System are significant tectonic features in the Nicobar segment. The pre-2004 seismicity in both these segments conform to the steady-state conditions wherein large earthquakes are fewer and compressive stresses dominate along the plate interface. Among the pre-2004 great earthquakes are the 1881 Nicobar and 1941 Andaman events. The former is considered to be a shallow thrust event that generated a small tsunami. Studies in other subduction zones suggest that large outer-rise tensional events follow great plate boundary breaking earthquakes due to the the up-dip transfer of stresses within the subducting plate. The seismicity of the Andaman segment (1977-2004) concurs with the steady-state stress conditions where earthquakes occur dominantly by thrust faulting. The post-2004 seismicity shows up-dip migration along the plate interface, with dominance of shallow normal faulting, including a few outer rise events and some deeper (> 100 km) strike-slip faulting events within the subducting plate. The September 13, 2002, Mw 6.5 thrust faulting earthquake at

  2. Enhanced horizontal transfer of antibiotic resistance genes in freshwater microcosms induced by an ionic liquid.

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    Qing Wang

    Full Text Available The spread and propagation of antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs is a worldwide public health concern. Ionic liquids (ILs, considered as "environmentally friendly" replacements for industrial organic solvents, have been widely applied in modern industry. However, few data have been collected regarding the potential ecological and environmental risks of ILs, which are important for preparing for their potential discharge into the environment. In this paper, the IL 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium hexafluorophosphate ([BMIm][PF6] (0.001-5.0 g/L was tested for its effects on facilitating ARGs horizontal transfer mediated by plasmid RP4 in freshwater microcosms. In the horizontal transfer microcosms, the transfer frequency of plasmid RP4 was significantly enhanced (60-fold higher than untreated groups by the IL [BMIm][PF6] (1.0 g/L. Meanwhile, two strains of opportunistic pathogen Acinetobacter spp. and Salmonella spp. were isolated among the transconjugants, illustrating plasmid RP4 mediated horizontal transfer of ARGs occurred in pathogen. This could increase the risk of ARGs dissemination to human pathogens and pose great threat to public health. The cause that [BMIm[PF6] enhanced the transfer frequency of plasmid RP4 was proposed by suppressed cell membrane barrier and enhanced cell membrane permeability, which was evidenced by flow cytometry (FCM. This is the first report that some ILs facilitate horizontal transfer of plasmid RP4 which is widely distributed in the environment and thus add the adverse effects of the environmental risk of ILs.

  3. Trans-kingdom horizontal DNA transfer from bacteria to yeast is highly plastic due to natural polymorphisms in auxiliary nonessential recipient genes.

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    Kazuki Moriguchi

    Full Text Available With the rapid accumulation of genomic information from various eukaryotes in the last decade, genes proposed to have been derived from recent horizontal gene transfer (HGT events have been reported even in non-phagotrophic unicellular and multicellular organisms, but the molecular pathways underlying HGT remain to be explained. The development of in vitro HGT detection systems, which permit the molecular and genetic analyses of donor and recipient organisms and quantify HGT, are helpful in order to gain insight into mechanisms that may contribute to contemporary HGT events or may have contributed to past HGT events. We applied a horizontal DNA transfer system model based on conjugal gene transfer called trans-kingdom conjugation (TKC from the prokaryote Escherichia coli to the eukaryote Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and assessed whether and to what extent genetic variations in the eukaryotic recipient affect its receptivity to TKC. Strains from a collection of 4,823 knock-out mutants of S. cerevisiae MAT-α haploids were tested for their individual TKC receptivity. Two types of mutants, an ssd1 mutant and respiratory mutants, which are also found in experimental strains and in nature widely, were identified as highly receptive mutants. The TKC efficiency for spontaneously accrued petite (rho (-/0 mutants of the functional allele (SSD1-V strain showed increased receptivity. The TKC efficiency of the ssd1Δ mutant was 36% for bacterial conjugation, while that of the petite/ssd1Δ double mutants was even higher (220% in average compared to bacterial conjugation. This increased TKC receptivity was also observed when other conjugal transfer systems were applied and the donor bacterium was changed to Agrobacterium tumefaciens. These results support the idea that the genomes of certain eukaryotes have been exposed to exogenous DNA more frequently and continuously than previously thought.

  4. DNA-water interactions distinguish messenger RNA genes from transfer RNA genes. (United States)

    Khandelwal, Garima; Jayaram, B


    Physicochemical properties of DNA sequences as a guide to developing insights into genome organization has received little attention. Here, we utilize the energetics of DNA to further advance the knowledge on its language at a molecular level. Specifically, we ask the question whether physicochemical properties of different functional units on genomes differ. We extract intramolecular and solvation energies of different DNA base pair steps from a comprehensive set of molecular dynamics simulations. We then investigate the solvation behavior of DNA sequences coding for mRNAs and tRNAs. Distinguishing mRNA genes from tRNA genes is a tricky problem in genome annotation without assumptions on length of DNA and secondary structure of the product of transcription. We find that solvation energetics of DNA behaves as an extremely efficient property in discriminating 2,063,537 genes coding for mRNAs from 56,251 genes coding for tRNAs in all (~1500) completely sequenced prokaryotic genomes.

  5. Improvement of Hydrodynamics-Based Gene Transfer of Nonviral DNA Targeted to Murine Hepatocytes

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    Shingo Nakamura


    Full Text Available The liver is an important organ for supporting the life of an individual. Gene transfer toward this organ has been attempted in many laboratories to date; however, there have been few reports on improved liver-targeted gene delivery by using a nonviral vector. In this study, we examined the effect of various types of gene delivery carriers on enhancing the uptake and gene expression of exogenous DNA in murine hepatocytes when a hydrodynamics-based gene delivery (HGD is performed via tail-vein injection. Mice were singly injected with a large amount of phosphate-buffered saline containing reporter plasmid DNA and/or with a gene delivery carrier. One day after the gene delivery, the animals' livers were dissected and subjected to biochemical, histochemical, and molecular biological analyses. The strongest signal from the reporter plasmid DNA was observed when the DNA was mixed with a polyethylenimine- (PEI- based reagent. Coinjection with pCRTEIL (a loxP-floxed reporter construct and pTR/NCre (a liver-specific Cre expression vector resulted in the liver-specific recombination of pCRTEIL. The combination of PEI with HGD would thus be a valuable tool for liver-specific manipulation to examine the function of a gene of interest in the liver and for creating liver disease models.

  6. An adeno-associated virus vector-mediated multiple gene transfer for dopamine synthetic enzymes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    樊东升; 沈扬


    Objective: To explore a multiple gene transfer approach with separate adeno-associated virus vectors. Methods: The genes of dopamine synthetic enzymes, tyrosine hydroxylasc (TH), GTP cyclohydrolase I (GCH, an enzyme critical for tetrahydrobioptcrin synthesis), and aromatic L-amino acid decarboxylase (AADC), were cotransduced into 293 cells with separate AAV vectors. Expressions of TH, GCH, and AADC were detected by Western blot analysis. L-dopa and dopamine levels in the ceils were assayed by HPLC. Results: TH, GCH, and AADC proteins were effectively cocxpressed in the transduced cells with three separate AAV vectors, AAV-TH, AAV-GCH, and AAV-AADC. Furthermore, the coexpression of these three proteins resulted in an effectively spontaneous dopainc production in the cotransduced cells. Conclusion: The triple transduction of TH, GCH, and AADC genes with separate AAV vectors is effective, which might be important to gene therapy for Parkinson's disease.

  7. Correlation of a set of gene variants, life events and personality features on adult ADHD severity. (United States)

    Müller, Daniel J; Chiesa, Alberto; Mandelli, Laura; De Luca, Vincenzo; De Ronchi, Diana; Jain, Umesh; Serretti, Alessandro; Kennedy, James L


    Increasing evidence suggests that symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) could persist into adult life in a substantial proportion of cases. The aim of the present study was to investigate the impact of (1) adverse events, (2) personality traits and (3) genetic variants chosen on the basis of previous findings and (4) their possible interactions on adult ADHD severity. One hundred and ten individuals diagnosed with adult ADHD were evaluated for occurrence of adverse events in childhood and adulthood, and personality traits by the Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI). Common polymorphisms within a set of nine important candidate genes (SLC6A3, DBH, DRD4, DRD5, HTR2A, CHRNA7, BDNF, PRKG1 and TAAR9) were genotyped for each subject. Life events, personality traits and genetic variations were analyzed in relationship to severity of current symptoms, according to the Brown Attention Deficit Disorder Scale (BADDS). Genetic variations were not significantly associated with severity of ADHD symptoms. Life stressors displayed only a minor effect as compared to personality traits. Indeed, symptoms' severity was significantly correlated with the temperamental trait of Harm avoidance and the character trait of Self directedness. The results of the present work are in line with previous evidence of a significant correlation between some personality traits and adult ADHD. However, several limitations such as the small sample size and the exclusion of patients with other severe comorbid psychiatric disorders could have influenced the significance of present findings.

  8. Identifying early events of gene expression in breast cancer with systems biology phylogenetics. (United States)

    Abu-Asab, M S; Abu-Asab, N; Loffredo, C A; Clarke, R; Amri, H


    Advanced omics technologies such as deep sequencing and spectral karyotyping are revealing more of cancer heterogeneity at the genetic, genomic, gene expression, epigenetic, proteomic, and metabolomic levels. With this increasing body of emerging data, the task of data analysis becomes critical for mining and modeling to better understand the relevant underlying biological processes. However, the multiple levels of heterogeneity evident within and among populations, healthy and diseased, complicate the mining and interpretation of biological data, especially when dealing with hundreds to tens of thousands of variables. Heterogeneity occurs in many diseases, such as cancers, autism, macular degeneration, and others. In cancer, heterogeneity has hampered the search for validated biomarkers for early detection, and it has complicated the task of finding clonal (driver) and nonclonal (nonexpanded or passenger) aberrations. We show that subtyping of cancer (classification of specimens) should be an a priori step to the identification of early events of cancers. Studying early events in oncogenesis can be done on histologically normal tissues from diseased individuals (HNTDI), since they most likely have been exposed to the same mutagenic insults that caused the cancer in their neighboring tissues. Polarity assessment of HNTDI data variables by using healthy specimens as outgroup(s), followed by the application of parsimony phylogenetic analysis, produces a hierarchical classification of specimens that reveals the early events of the disease ontogeny within its subtypes as shared derived changes (abnormal changes) or synapomorphies in phylogenetic terminology. Copyright © 2013 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  9. Selective gene transfer to endometrial cancer cells by a polymer against matrix metalloproteinase 2 (MMP-2). (United States)

    Han, Joo Youn; Choi, Dong Soon; Kim, Changhoon; Joo, Hyun; Min, Churl K


    A novel cancer-cell-specific gene delivery vector with high transfection efficiency was designed and tested with an in vitro coculture consisting of the human endometrial adenocarcinoma cell line, HEC-1A cells, and normal endometrial stromal cells. For the cancer-cell targeting, polyethylenimine (PEI), a cationic polymer that can be easily combined with anionic DNA to form a particulate complex, polyplex, being capable of transferring a gene into a variety of cells, was covalently conjugated with antibodies against matrix metalloproteinase 2 (MMP-2), a typical surface-marker protein on cancer cells known for its close correlation with angiogenesis and invasion in many types of cancer, using the heterofunctional cross-linker, n-succinimidyl 3-(2-pyridyldithio)-propionamide. Biophysical properties and transfection efficiencies of anti-MMP-2-conjugated PEI were analyzed by means of dynamic light scattering, laser Doppler anemometry, and flow cytometry. Our results reveal that (1) the PEI-anti-MMP-2 antibody conjugate maintains physical parameters, including sizes and surface charges, which appear to be favorable for gene transfer and (2) when the pEGFP-N3 plasmid complexes of the PEI-anti-MMP-2 antibody conjugate are applied to the coculture consisting of HEC-1A cells and human stromal cells, a high level of green fluorescent protein expression occurs in HEC-1A cells over stromal cells, suggesting a specific gene transfer targeting cancer cells. Therefore, targeting invading cancer cells with the PEI-anti-MMP-2 antibody conjugate could be promising in endometrial cancer treatment, and this gene delivery system deserves further optimization in the context of targeted therapeutic gene delivery.

  10. Observations at Low Latitudes of Magnetic Merging Signatures Within a Flux Transfer Event During a Northward IMF (United States)

    Chandler, M. O.; Avanov, L. A.


    Flux transfer events (FTE) have been postulated to result from transient magnetic merging. If so, the ion distributions within an event should exhibit features known to result from merging. Observations of a FTE by instruments on the Polar spacecraft revealed classical merging signatures that included: 1) D-shaped, accelerated, magnetosheath ion distributions, 2) a well defined de Hoffman-Teller frame, 3) local stress balance, and 4) a P-N magnetic field signature. This FTE was observed near the magnetic equator at approx. 13 MLT under conditions of a moderately northward interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) (clock angle of less than 10 deg). The nature of the ion distributions and the consistency of the measured cutoff speed with that calculated from the measured local magnetic field and the derived de Hoffman-Teller speed show the ion injection to be local. Coupled with the northward IMF these results lead to the conclusion that component merging in the low latitude region was responsible for the FTE.

  11. Correction of Fanconi Anemia Group C Hematopoietic Stem Cells Following Intrafemoral Gene Transfer

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    Ouassila Habi


    Full Text Available The main cause of morbidity and mortality in Fanconi anemia patients is the development of bone marrow (BM failure; thus correction of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs through gene transfer approaches would benefit FA patients. However, gene therapy trials for FA patients using ex vivo transduction protocols have failed to provide long-term correction. In addition, ex vivo cultures have been found to be hazardous for FA cells. To circumvent negative effects of ex vivo culture in FA stem cells, we tested the corrective ability of direct injection of recombinant lentiviral particles encoding FancC-EGFP into femurs of FancC−/− mice. Using this approach, we show that FancC−/− HSCs were efficiently corrected. Intrafemoral gene transfer of the FancC gene prevented the mitomycin C-induced BM failure. Moreover, we show that intrafemoral gene delivery into aplastic marrow restored the bone marrow cellularity and corrected the remaining HSCs. These results provide evidence that targeting FA-deficient HSCs directly in their environment enables efficient and long-term correction of BM defects in FA.

  12. Sleeping Beauty-Mediated Drug Resistance Gene Transfer in Human Hematopoietic Progenitor Cells (United States)

    Hyland, Kendra A.; Olson, Erik R.; McIvor, R. Scott


    The Sleeping Beauty (SB) transposon system can insert sequences into mammalian chromosomes, supporting long-term expression of both reporter and therapeutic genes. Hematopoietic progenitor cells (HPCs) are an ideal therapeutic gene transfer target as they are used in therapy for a variety of hematologic and metabolic conditions. As successful SB-mediated gene transfer into human CD34+ HPCs has been reported by several laboratories, we sought to extend these studies to the introduction of a therapeutic gene conferring resistance to methotrexate (MTX), potentially providing a chemoprotective effect after engraftment. SB-mediated transposition of hematopoietic progenitors, using a transposon encoding an L22Y variant dihydrofolate reductase fused to green fluorescent protein, conferred resistance to methotrexate and dipyridamole, a nucleoside transport inhibitor that tightens MTX selection conditions, as assessed by in vitro hematopoietic colony formation. Transposition of individual transgenes was confirmed by sequence analysis of transposon–chromosome junctions recovered by linear amplification-mediated PCR. These studies demonstrate the potential of SB-mediated transposition of HPCs for expression of drug resistance genes for selective and chemoprotective applications. PMID:26176276

  13. Evidence for Interspecies Gene Transfer in the Evolution of 2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic Acid Degraders (United States)

    McGowan, Catherine; Fulthorpe, Roberta; Wright, Alice; Tiedje, J. M.


    Small-subunit ribosomal DNA (SSU rDNA) from 20 phenotypically distinct strains of 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D)-degrading bacteria was partially sequenced, yielding 18 unique strains belonging to members of the alpha, beta, and gamma subgroups of the class Proteobacteria. To understand the origin of 2,4-D degradation in this diverse collection, the first gene in the 2,4-D pathway, tfdA, was sequenced. The sequences fell into three unique classes found in various members of the beta and gamma subgroups of Proteobacteria. None of the α-Proteobacteria yielded tfdA PCR products. A comparison of the dendrogram of the tfdA genes with that of the SSU rDNA genes demonstrated incongruency in phylogenies, and hence 2,4-D degradation must have originated from gene transfer between species. Only those strains with tfdA sequences highly similar to the tfdA sequence of strain JMP134 (tfdA class I) transferred all the 2,4-D genes and conferred the 2,4-D degradation phenotype to a Burkholderia cepacia recipient. PMID:9758850

  14. Et tu, Brute? Not Even Intracellular Mutualistic Symbionts Escape Horizontal Gene Transfer

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    Sergio López-Madrigal


    Full Text Available Many insect species maintain mutualistic relationships with endosymbiotic bacteria. In contrast to their free-living relatives, horizontal gene transfer (HGT has traditionally been considered rare in long-term endosymbionts. Nevertheless, meta-omics exploration of certain symbiotic models has unveiled an increasing number of bacteria-bacteria and bacteria-host genetic transfers. The abundance and function of transferred loci suggest that HGT might play a major role in the evolution of the corresponding consortia, enhancing their adaptive value or buffering detrimental effects derived from the reductive evolution of endosymbionts’ genomes. Here, we comprehensively review the HGT cases recorded to date in insect-bacteria mutualistic consortia, and discuss their impact on the evolutionary success of these associations.

  15. Localized gene transfer into organotypic hippocampal slice cultures and acute hippocampal slices

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Casaccia-Bonnefil, P; Benedikz, Eirikur; Shen, H;


    Viral vectors derived from herpes simplex virus, type-1 (HSV), can transfer and express genes into fully differentiated, post-mitotic neurons. These vectors also transduce cells effectively in organotypic hippocampal slice cultures. Nanoliter quantities of a virus stock of HSVlac, an HSV vector...... or hippocampal slices. The rapid expression of beta-gal by HSVlac allowed efficient transduction of acute hippocampal slices. Many genes have been transduced and expressed using HSV vectors; therefore, this microapplication method can be applied to many neurobiological questions....

  16. Baculovirus vector-mediated transfer of NIS gene into colon tumor cells for radionuclide therapy

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    AIM:To investigate the feasibility of radionuclide therapy of colon tumor cells by baculovirus vector-mediated transfer of the sodium/iodide symporter(NIS) gene.METHODS:A recombinant baculovirus plasmid carrying the NIS gene was constructed,and the viruses(BacNIS) were prepared using the Bac-to-Bac system.The infection efficiency in the colon cancer cell line SW1116 of a green fluorescent protein(GFP) expressing baculovirus(Bac-GFP) at different multiplicities of infection(MOI) with various concentrations o...

  17. Sequence diversities of serine-aspartate repeat genes among Staphylococcus aureus isolates from different hosts presumably by horizontal gene transfer.

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    Huping Xue

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Horizontal gene transfer (HGT is recognized as one of the major forces for bacterial genome evolution. Many clinically important bacteria may acquire virulence factors and antibiotic resistance through HGT. The comparative genomic analysis has become an important tool for identifying HGT in emerging pathogens. In this study, the Serine-Aspartate Repeat (Sdr family has been compared among different sources of Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus to discover sequence diversities within their genomes. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Four sdr genes were analyzed for 21 different S. aureus strains and 218 mastitis-associated S. aureus isolates from Canada. Comparative genomic analyses revealed that S. aureus strains from bovine mastitis (RF122 and mastitis isolates in this study, ovine mastitis (ED133, pig (ST398, chicken (ED98, and human methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA (TCH130, MRSA252, Mu3, Mu50, N315, 04-02981, JH1 and JH9 were highly associated with one another, presumably due to HGT. In addition, several types of insertion and deletion were found in sdr genes of many isolates. A new insertion sequence was found in mastitis isolates, which was presumably responsible for the HGT of sdrC gene among different strains. Moreover, the sdr genes could be used to type S. aureus. Regional difference of sdr genes distribution was also indicated among the tested S. aureus isolates. Finally, certain associations were found between sdr genes and subclinical or clinical mastitis isolates. CONCLUSIONS: Certain sdr gene sequences were shared in S. aureus strains and isolates from different species presumably due to HGT. Our results also suggest that the distributional assay of virulence factors should detect the full sequences or full functional regions of these factors. The traditional assay using short conserved regions may not be accurate or credible. These findings have important implications with regard to animal husbandry practices that may

  18. Structural analysis of DNA sequence: evidence for lateral gene transfer in Thermotoga maritima

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Worning, Peder; Jensen, Lars Juhl; Nelson, K. E.


    The recently published complete DNA sequence of the bacterium Thermotoga maritima provides evidence, based on protein sequence conservation, for lateral gene transfer between Archaea and Bacteria. We introduce a new method of periodicity analysis of DNA sequences, based on structural parameters......, which brings independent evidence for the lateral gene transfer in the genome of T.maritima, The structural analysis relates the Archaea-like DNA sequences to the genome of Pyrococcus horikoshii. Analysis of 24 complete genomic DNA sequences shows different periodicity patterns for organisms...... of different origin, The typical genomic periodicity for Bacteria is 11 bp whilst it is 10 bp for Archaea, Eukaryotes have more complex spectra but the dominant period in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae is 10.2 bp. These periodicities are most likely reflective of differences in chromatin structure....

  19. Bidirectional transfer of RNAi between honey bee and Varroa destructor: Varroa gene silencing reduces Varroa population.

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    Yael Garbian


    Full Text Available The mite Varroa destructor is an obligatory ectoparasite of the honey bee (Apis mellifera and is one of the major threats to apiculture worldwide. We previously reported that honey bees fed on double-stranded RNA (dsRNA with a sequence homologous to that of the Israeli acute paralysis virus are protected from the viral disease. Here we show that dsRNA ingested by bees is transferred to the Varroa mite and from mite on to a parasitized bee. This cross-species, reciprocal exchange of dsRNA between bee and Varroa engendered targeted gene silencing in the latter, and resulted in an over 60% decrease in the mite population. Thus, transfer of gene-silencing-triggering molecules between this invertebrate host and its ectoparasite could lead to a conceptually novel approach to Varroa control.

  20. Light-controlled inhibition of malignant glioma by opsin gene transfer (United States)

    Yang, F; Tu, J; Pan, J-Q; Luo, H-L; Liu, Y-H; Wan, J; Zhang, J; Wei, P-F; Jiang, T; Chen, Y-H; Wang, L-P


    Glioblastomas are aggressive cancers with low survival rates and poor prognosis because of their highly proliferative and invasive capacity. In the current study, we describe a new optogenetic strategy that selectively inhibits glioma cells through light-controlled membrane depolarization and cell death. Transfer of the engineered opsin ChETA (engineered Channelrhodopsin-2 variant) gene into primary human glioma cells or cell lines, but not normal astrocytes, unexpectedly decreased cell proliferation and increased mitochondria-dependent apoptosis, upon light stimulation. These optogenetic effects were mediated by membrane depolarization-induced reductions in cyclin expression and mitochondrial transmembrane potential. Importantly, the ChETA gene transfer and light illumination in mice significantly inhibited subcutaneous and intracranial glioma growth and increased the survival of the animals bearing the glioma. These results uncover an unexpected effect of opsin ion channels on glioma cells and offer the opportunity for the first time to treat glioma using a light-controllable optogenetic approach. PMID:24176851

  1. Bidirectional transfer of RNAi between honey bee and Varroa destructor: Varroa gene silencing reduces Varroa population. (United States)

    Garbian, Yael; Maori, Eyal; Kalev, Haim; Shafir, Sharoni; Sela, Ilan


    The mite Varroa destructor is an obligatory ectoparasite of the honey bee (Apis mellifera) and is one of the major threats to apiculture worldwide. We previously reported that honey bees fed on double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) with a sequence homologous to that of the Israeli acute paralysis virus are protected from the viral disease. Here we show that dsRNA ingested by bees is transferred to the Varroa mite and from mite on to a parasitized bee. This cross-species, reciprocal exchange of dsRNA between bee and Varroa engendered targeted gene silencing in the latter, and resulted in an over 60% decrease in the mite population. Thus, transfer of gene-silencing-triggering molecules between this invertebrate host and its ectoparasite could lead to a conceptually novel approach to Varroa control.

  2. Transfer of antibiotic-resistance genes via phage-related mobile elements. (United States)

    Brown-Jaque, Maryury; Calero-Cáceres, William; Muniesa, Maite


    Antibiotic resistance is a major concern for society because it threatens the effective prevention of infectious diseases. While some bacterial strains display intrinsic resistance, others achieve antibiotic resistance by mutation, by the recombination of foreign DNA into the chromosome or by horizontal gene acquisition. In many cases, these three mechanisms operate together. Several mobile genetic elements (MGEs) have been reported to mobilize different types of resistance genes and despite sharing common features, they are often considered and studied separately. Bacteriophages and phage-related particles have recently been highlighted as MGEs that transfer antibiotic resistance. This review focuses on phages, phage-related elements and on composite MGEs (phages-MGEs) involved in antibiotic resistance mobility. We review common features of these elements, rather than differences, and provide a broad overview of the antibiotic resistance transfer mechanisms observed in nature, which is a necessary first step to controlling them.

  3. Bacteriophages Isolated from Chicken Meat and the Horizontal Transfer of Antimicrobial Resistance Genes (United States)

    Shousha, Amira; Awaiwanont, Nattakarn; Sofka, Dmitrij; Smulders, Frans J. M.; Paulsen, Peter; Szostak, Michael P.; Humphrey, Tom


    Antimicrobial resistance in microbes poses a global and increasing threat to public health. The horizontal transfer of antimicrobial resistance genes was thought to be due largely to conjugative plasmids or transposons, with only a minor part being played by transduction through bacteriophages. However, whole-genome sequencing has recently shown that the latter mechanism could be highly important in the exchange of antimicrobial resistance genes between microorganisms and environments. The transfer of antimicrobial resistance genes by phages could underlie the origin of resistant bacteria found in food. We show that chicken meat carries a number of phages capable of transferring antimicrobial resistance. Of 243 phages randomly isolated from chicken meat, about a quarter (24.7%) were able to transduce resistance to one or more of the five antimicrobials tested into Escherichia coli ATCC 13706 (DSM 12242). Resistance to kanamycin was transduced the most often, followed by that to chloramphenicol, with four phages transducing tetracycline resistance and three transducing ampicillin resistance. Phages able to transduce antimicrobial resistance were isolated from 44% of the samples of chicken meat that we tested. The statistically significant (P = 0.01) relationship between the presence of phages transducing kanamycin resistance and E. coli isolates resistant to this antibiotic suggests that transduction may be an important mechanism for transferring kanamycin resistance to E. coli. It appears that the transduction of resistance to certain antimicrobials, e.g., kanamycin, not only is widely distributed in E. coli isolates found on meat but also could represent a major mechanism for resistance transfer. The result is of high importance for animal and human health. PMID:25934615

  4. Bacteriophages Isolated from Chicken Meat and the Horizontal Transfer of Antimicrobial Resistance Genes. (United States)

    Shousha, Amira; Awaiwanont, Nattakarn; Sofka, Dmitrij; Smulders, Frans J M; Paulsen, Peter; Szostak, Michael P; Humphrey, Tom; Hilbert, Friederike


    Antimicrobial resistance in microbes poses a global and increasing threat to public health. The horizontal transfer of antimicrobial resistance genes was thought to be due largely to conjugative plasmids or transposons, with only a minor part being played by transduction through bacteriophages. However, whole-genome sequencing has recently shown that the latter mechanism could be highly important in the exchange of antimicrobial resistance genes between microorganisms and environments. The transfer of antimicrobial resistance genes by phages could underlie the origin of resistant bacteria found in food. We show that chicken meat carries a number of phages capable of transferring antimicrobial resistance. Of 243 phages randomly isolated from chicken meat, about a quarter (24.7%) were able to transduce resistance to one or more of the five antimicrobials tested into Escherichia coli ATCC 13706 (DSM 12242). Resistance to kanamycin was transduced the most often, followed by that to chloramphenicol, with four phages transducing tetracycline resistance and three transducing ampicillin resistance. Phages able to transduce antimicrobial resistance were isolated from 44% of the samples of chicken meat that we tested. The statistically significant (P = 0.01) relationship between the presence of phages transducing kanamycin resistance and E. coli isolates resistant to this antibiotic suggests that transduction may be an important mechanism for transferring kanamycin resistance to E. coli. It appears that the transduction of resistance to certain antimicrobials, e.g., kanamycin, not only is widely distributed in E. coli isolates found on meat but also could represent a major mechanism for resistance transfer. The result is of high importance for animal and human health.

  5. The Histidine Decarboxylase Gene Cluster of Lactobacillus parabuchneri Was Gained by Horizontal Gene Transfer and Is Mobile within the Species (United States)

    Wüthrich, Daniel; Berthoud, Hélène; Wechsler, Daniel; Eugster, Elisabeth; Irmler, Stefan; Bruggmann, Rémy


    Histamine in food can cause intolerance reactions in consumers. Lactobacillus parabuchneri (L. parabuchneri) is one of the major causes of elevated histamine levels in cheese. Despite its significant economic impact and negative influence on human health, no genomic study has been published so far. We sequenced and analyzed 18 L. parabuchneri strains of which 12 were histamine positive and 6 were histamine negative. We determined the complete genome of the histamine positive strain FAM21731 with PacBio as well as Illumina and the genomes of the remaining 17 strains using the Illumina technology. We developed the synteny aware ortholog finding algorithm SynOrf to compare the genomes and we show that the histidine decarboxylase (HDC) gene cluster is located in a genomic island. It is very likely that the HDC gene cluster was transferred from other lactobacilli, as it is highly conserved within several lactobacilli species. Furthermore, we have evidence that the HDC gene cluster was transferred within the L. parabuchneri species. PMID:28261177

  6. Genetic analysis of transgenome structure and size of chromosome—mediated gene transfer lines

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    The TK-selected chromosome-mediate gene transfer lines were analysed using DNA dot blot method G-11 banding and in situ hybridization.The results showed that CMGT can provide a wide variety of intermediate size of the transgenome from greater than 80,000kb to less than 2,000kb,Some of transfectants are intergrated into mouse chromosome which can be detected by G-11 banding and in situ hybridization.

  7. Targeted gene transfer of hepatocyte growth factor to alveolar type II epithelial cells reduces lung fibrosis in rats. (United States)

    Gazdhar, Amiq; Temuri, Almas; Knudsen, Lars; Gugger, Mathias; Schmid, Ralph A; Ochs, Matthias; Geiser, Thomas


    Inefficient alveolar wound repair contributes to the development of pulmonary fibrosis. Hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) is a potent growth factor for alveolar type II epithelial cells (AECII) and may improve repair and reduce fibrosis. We studied whether targeted gene transfer of HGF specifically to AECII improves lung fibrosis in bleomycin-induced lung fibrosis. A plasmid encoding human HGF expressed from the human surfactant protein C promoter (pSpC-hHGF) was designed, and extracorporeal electroporation-mediated gene transfer of HGF specifically to AECII was performed 7 days after bleomycin-induced lung injury in the rat. Animals were killed 7 days after hHGF gene transfer. Electroporation-mediated HGF gene transfer resulted in HGF expression specifically in AECII at biologically relevant levels. HGF gene transfer reduced pulmonary fibrosis as assessed by histology, hydroxyproline determination, and design-based stereology compared with controls. Our results indicate that the antifibrotic effect of HGF is due in part to a reduction of transforming growth factor-β(1), modulation of the epithelial-mesenchymal transition, and reduction of extravascular fibrin deposition. We conclude that targeted HGF gene transfer specifically to AECII decreases bleomycin-induced lung fibrosis and may therefore represent a novel cell-specific gene transfer technology to treat pulmonary fibrosis.

  8. Cross-species gene-family fluctuations reveal the dynamics of horizontal transfers. (United States)

    Grilli, Jacopo; Romano, Mariacristina; Bassetti, Federico; Cosentino Lagomarsino, Marco


    Prokaryotes vary their protein repertoire mainly through horizontal transfer and gene loss. To elucidate the links between these processes and the cross-species gene-family statistics, we perform a large-scale data analysis of the cross-species variability of gene-family abundance (the number of members of the family found on a given genome). We find that abundance fluctuations are related to the rate of horizontal transfers. This is rationalized by a minimal theoretical model, which predicts this link. The families that are not captured by the model show abundance profiles that are markedly peaked around a mean value, possibly because of specific abundance selection. Based on these results, we define an abundance variability index that captures a family's evolutionary behavior (and thus some of its relevant functional properties) purely based on its cross-species abundance fluctuations. Analysis and model, combined, show a quantitative link between cross-species family abundance statistics and horizontal transfer dynamics, which can be used to analyze genome 'flux'. Groups of families with different values of the abundance variability index correspond to genome sub-parts having different plasticity in terms of the level of horizontal exchange allowed by natural selection.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Malik


    Full Text Available The paper justified essence of genetic engineering as the object of insurance services. Defines the concept of risk gene transferring. The character features of this specific risk. The influence and consequences for agricultural producers. The description of the possible creation of the concept of insurance services that cover risk of gene transferring. The study reveals of the use of GMOs in agriculture, due to issues of economic security of a particular region or country as a whole. To determined the impact of risks and control for developing and developed countries that are important aspects of farming. Changes in weather, climate, productivity, price values, public policy, the situation on global markets can cause large fluctuations in agricultural production, and consequently affecting the income of agricultural producers. Risk management includes a range of strategies that reduce the social and financial implications of possible changes affecting the production and income of farmers. There is a need for an in-depth study of the theoretical and practical aspects of the impact of the risk of gene transferring in the context of insurance protection.

  10. Hepatocyte gene transfer mediated by stable polyplexes based on MPP-containing DNA complexes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Bao-Feng Yu; Wan-I Li; Xiao-Nian Hu; Yue-Hong Zhang; Bo Niu; Jun Xie


    BACKGROUND: In the field of gene therapy, viral vectors as delivery tools have a number of disadvantages for medical application. This study aimed to explore a novel nonviral vector as a vehicle for gene therapy. METHODS: Transvector-rpE-MPP and EGFP (enhanced green fluorescent protein) were used as the gene transfer carrier and the reporter gene, respectively. Polyplexes which integrate transvector-rpE-MPP, the object gene, and EGFP were formed. The optimal charge ratio, stability, and transduction capacity of the polyplexes in mouse hepatocytes in vitro and in mouse liver in vivo were investigated. The polyplexes of transvector-rpE-MPP and pcDNA3-EGFP, with charge ratios of 0, 0.25, 0.5, 0.75, 1 and 1.5 were compared to determine the optimal charge ratio. RESULTS:  Polyplexes with charge ratios of 1∶1 were most stable; pcDNA3-EGFP in these complexes resisted digestion by DNase Ⅰ and blood plasma. On the other hand, pcDNA3-EGFP alone was digested. Fluorescence analysis indicated that transvector-rpE-MPP successfully delivered the reporter gene EGFP into hepatocytes and that EGFP expression was detected in hepatocyte cultures and in liver tissue. CONCLUSION: These results have laid a foundation for further study of a novel nonviral gene delivery system.

  11. Efficient Gene Transfer Mediated by HIV-1-based Defective Lentivector and Inhibition of HIV-1 Replication

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    Lentiviral vectors have drawn considerable attention recently and show great promise to become important delivery vehicles for future gene transfer manipulation. In the present study we have optimized a protocol for preparation of human immunodeficiency virus type-1 (HIV-1)-based defective lentiviral vectors (DLV) and characterized these vectors in terms of their transduction of different cells. Transient co-transfection of 293T packaging cells with DNA plasmids encoding lentiviral vector constituents resulted in production of high-titer DLV (0.5-1.2 × 107IU/mL), which can be further concentrated over 100-fold through a single step ultracentrifugation. These vectors were capable of transducing a variety of cells from both primate and non-primate sources and high transduction efficiency was achieved using concentrated vectors. Assessment of potential generation of RCV revealed no detection of infection by infectious particles in DLV-transduced CEM, SupT-1 and MT-2 cells. Long-term culture of transduced cells showed a stable expression of transgenes without apparent alteration in cellular morphology and growth kinetics. Vector mobilization to untransduced cells mediated by wild-type HIV-1 infection was confirmed in this test. Challenge of transduced human T-lymphocytes with wild-type HIV-1 showed these cells are totally resistant to the viral infection. Considering the effective gene transfer and stable gene expression, safety and anti-HIV activity, these DLV vectors warrant further exploration for their potential use as a gene transfer vehicle in the development of gene therapy protocols.

  12. Investigating rate-limiting barriers to nanoscale nonviral gene transfer with nanobiophotonics (United States)

    Chen, Hunter H.

    Nucleic acids are a novel class of therapeutics poised to address many unmet clinical needs. Safe and efficient delivery remains a significant challenge that has delayed the realization of the full therapeutic potential of nucleic acids. Nanoscale nonviral vectors offer an attractive alternative to viral vectors as natural and synthetic polymers or polypeptides may be rationally designed to meet the unique demands of individual applications. A mechanistic understanding of cellular barriers is necessary to develop guidelines for designing custom gene carriers which are expected to greatly impact this delivery challenge. The work herein focused on the relationships among nanocomplex stability, intracellular trafficking and unpacking kinetics, and DNA degradation. Ultrasensitive nanosensors based on QD-FRET were developed to characterize the biophysical properties of nanocomplexes and study these rate-limiting steps. Quantitative image analysis enabled the distributions of the subpopulation of condensed or released DNA to be determined within the major cellular compartments encountered during gene transfer. The steady state stability and unpacking kinetics within these compartments were found to impact transgene expression, elucidating multiple design strategies to achieve efficient gene transfer. To address enzymatic barriers, a novel two-step QD-FRET nanosensor was developed to analyze unpacking and DNA degradation simultaneously, which has not been accomplished previously. Bioresponsive strategies such as disulfide crosslinking and thermosensitivity were evaluated by QD-FRET and quantitative compartmental analysis as case studies to determine appropriate design specifications for thiolated polymers and thermoresponsive polypeptides. Relevant nanobiophotonic tools were developed as a platform to study major rate-limiting barriers to nanomedicine and demonstrated the feasibility of using mechanistic information gained from these tools to guide the rational design of

  13. In vivo gene transfer strategies to achieve partial correction of von Willebrand disease. (United States)

    Wang, Lan; Rosenberg, Jonathan B; De, Bishnu P; Ferris, Barbara; Wang, Rui; Rivella, Stefano; Kaminsky, Stephen M; Crystal, Ronald G


    von Willebrand disease (VWD), the most common hereditary coagulation disorder, results from mutations in the 52-exon gene for von Willebrand factor (VWF), which encodes an 8.4-kB cDNA. Studies with VWF cDNA plasmids have demonstrated that in vivo gene transfer to the liver will correct the coagulation dysfunction in VWF(-/-) mice, but the correction is transient. To develop gene therapy for VWF that would mediate long-term expression of the VWF cDNA in liver, we first evaluated segmental pre-mRNA trans-splicing (SPTS) with two adeno-associated virus (AAV) serotype 8 vectors, each delivering one-half of the VWF cDNA. However, although the two vectors functioned well to generate VWF multimers after infection of cells in vitro, the efficiency of SPTS was insufficient to correct the VWF(-/-) mouse in vivo. As an alternative, we assessed the ability of a lentiviral vector to transfer the intact murine VWF cDNA in vivo directly to the neonatal liver of VWF(-/-) mice, using generation of VWF multimers, bleeding time, and bleeding volume as efficacy parameters. The VWF lentivirus generated VWF multimers and partially or completely corrected the coagulation defect on a persistent basis in 33% of the treated VWF-deficient mice. On the basis of the concept that partial persistent correction with gene transfer could be beneficial in VWD patients, these observations suggest that lentiviral delivery of VWF cDNA should be explored as a candidate for gene therapy in patients with a severe form of VWD.

  14. Involvement of plastid, mitochondrial and nuclear genomes in plant-to-plant horizontal gene transfer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Virginia Sanchez-Puerta


    Full Text Available This review focuses on plant-to-plant horizontal gene transfer (HGT involving the three DNA-containing cellular compartments. It highlights the great incidence of HGT in the mitochondrial genome (mtDNA of angiosperms, the increasing number of examples in plant nuclear genomes, and the lack of any convincing evidence for HGT in the well-studied plastid genome of land plants. Most of the foreign mitochondrial genes are non-functional, generally found as pseudogenes in the recipient plant mtDNA that maintains its functional native genes. The few exceptions involve chimeric HGT, in which foreign and native copies recombine leading to a functional and single copy of the gene. Maintenance of foreign genes in plant mitochondria is probably the result of genetic drift, but a possible evolutionary advantage may be conferred through the generation of genetic diversity by gene conversion between native and foreign copies. Conversely, a few cases of nuclear HGT in plants involve functional transfers of novel genes that resulted in adaptive evolution. Direct cell-to-cell contact between plants (e.g. host-parasite relationships or natural grafting facilitate the exchange of genetic material, in which HGT has been reported for both nuclear and mitochondrial genomes, and in the form of genomic DNA, instead of RNA. A thorough review of the literature indicates that HGT in mitochondrial and nuclear genomes of angiosperms is much more frequent than previously expected and that the evolutionary impact and mechanisms underlying plant-to-plant HGT remain to be uncovered.

  15. Bayesian analysis of congruence of core genes in Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus and implications on horizontal gene transfer.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicholas J Matzke

    Full Text Available It is often suggested that horizontal gene transfer is so ubiquitous in microbes that the concept of a phylogenetic tree representing the pattern of vertical inheritance is oversimplified or even positively misleading. "Universal proteins" have been used to infer the organismal phylogeny, but have been criticized as being only the "tree of one percent." Currently, few options exist for those wishing to rigorously assess how well a universal protein phylogeny, based on a relative handful of well-conserved genes, represents the phylogenetic histories of hundreds of genes. Here, we address this problem by proposing a visualization method and a statistical test within a Bayesian framework. We use the genomes of marine cyanobacteria, a group thought to exhibit substantial amounts of HGT, as a test case. We take 379 orthologous gene families from 28 cyanobacteria genomes and estimate the Bayesian posterior distributions of trees - a "treecloud" - for each, as well as for a concatenated dataset based on putative "universal proteins." We then calculate the average distance between trees within and between all treeclouds on various metrics and visualize this high-dimensional space with non-metric multidimensional scaling (NMMDS. We show that the tree space is strongly clustered and that the universal protein treecloud is statistically significantly closer to the center of this tree space than any individual gene treecloud. We apply several commonly-used tests for incongruence/HGT and show that they agree HGT is rare in this dataset, but make different choices about which genes were subject to HGT. Our results show that the question of the representativeness of the "tree of one percent" is a quantitative empirical question, and that the phylogenetic central tendency is a meaningful observation even if many individual genes disagree due to the various sources of incongruence.


    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    “Chemistry Department, Kenyatta University, P. 0. Box 43844 ... harvester (X) [L 2] in a manner consistent with the following Forster equation for long range energy transfer [3-7]. .... sensitive foods, chemical reactors and essences. Recently we ...

  17. Fibrinogen gene haplotypes in relation to risk of coronary events and coronary and extracoronary atherosclerosis: the Rotterdam Study. (United States)

    Kardys, Isabella; Uitterlinden, André G; Hofman, Albert; Witteman, Jacqueline C M; de Maat, Moniek P M


    Fibrin network structure has been correlated with coronary disease. Fibrinogen gamma and alpha (FGG and FGA) gene haplotypes (chromosome 4q28) may be associated with fibrin network structure, and thereby with rigidity of the fibrin clot and sensitivity of the fibrin clot to the fibrinolytic system. Through these mechanisms they may influence risk of cardiovascular disease. We set out to investigate the relation between combined fibrinogen FGG and FGA gene haplotypes, representing the common variation of the fibrinogen FGG and FGA genes, coronary events and measures of coronary and extracoronary atherosclerosis. The study was embedded in the Rotterdam Study, a prospective population-based study among men and women aged >or=55 years. Common haplotypes were studied using seven tagging SNPs across a 30-kb region with the FGG and FGA genes. Incident coronary events were registered, and carotid intima-media thickness, carotid plaques, ankle-arm index, aortic calcification and coronary calcification were assessed. Seven haplotypes with frequencies >1% covered 97.5% of the genetic variation. In 5,667 participants without history of coronary heart disease (CHD), 733 CHD cases occurred during a median follow-up time of 11.9 years. Fibrinogen gene haplotypes were not associated with coronary events. Fibrinogen gene haplotypes did not show a consistent association with measures of coronary and extracoronary atherosclerosis. In conclusion, fibrinogen FGG and FGA gene haplotypes are not associated with coronary events, coronary atherosclerosis or extracoronary atherosclerosis. Confirmation of these findings by future population-based studies is warranted.

  18. Ocular gene transfer in the spotlight: implications of newspaper content for clinical communications. (United States)

    Benjaminy, Shelly; Bubela, Tania


    Ocular gene transfer clinical trials are raising hopes for blindness treatments and attracting media attention. News media provide an accessible health information source for patients and the public, but are often criticized for overemphasizing benefits and underplaying risks of novel biomedical interventions. Overly optimistic portrayals of unproven interventions may influence public and patient expectations; the latter may cause patients to downplay risks and over-emphasize benefits, with implications for informed consent for clinical trials. We analyze the news media communications landscape about ocular gene transfer and make recommendations for improving communications between clinicians and potential trial participants in light of media coverage. We analyzed leading newspaper articles about ocular gene transfer (1990-2012) from United States (n = 55), Canada (n = 26), and United Kingdom (n = 77) from Factiva and Canadian Newsstand databases using pre-defined coding categories. We evaluated the content of newspaper articles about ocular gene transfer for hereditary retinopathies, exploring representations of framing techniques, research design, risks/benefits, and translational timelines. The dominant frame in 61% of stories was a celebration of progress, followed by human-interest in 30% of stories. Missing from the positive frames were explanations of research design; articles conflated clinical research with treatment. Conflicts-of-interest and funding sources were similarly omitted. Attention was directed to the benefits of gene transfer, while risks were only reported in 43% of articles. A range of visual outcomes was described from slowing vision loss to cure, but the latter was the most frequently represented even though it is clinically infeasible. Despite the prominence of visual benefit portrayals, 87% of the articles failed to provide timelines for the commencement of clinical trials or for clinical implementation. Our analysis confirms

  19. Insights on the Horizontal Gene Transfer of Carbapenemase Determinants in the Opportunistic Pathogen Acinetobacter baumannii

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriela Jorge Da Silva


    Full Text Available Horizontal gene transfer (HGT is a driving force to the evolution of bacteria. The fast emergence of antimicrobial resistance reflects the ability of genetic adaptation of pathogens. Acinetobacter baumannii has emerged in the last few decades as an important opportunistic nosocomial pathogen, in part due to its high capacity of acquiring resistance to diverse antibiotic families, including to the so-called last line drugs such as carbapenems. The rampant selective pressure and genetic exchange of resistance genes hinder the effective treatment of resistant infections. A. baumannii uses all the resistance mechanisms to survive against carbapenems but production of carbapenemases are the major mechanism, which may act in synergy with others. A. baumannii appears to use all the mechanisms of gene dissemination. Beyond conjugation, the mostly reported recent studies point to natural transformation, transduction and outer membrane vesicles-mediated transfer as mechanisms that may play a role in carbapenemase determinants spread. Understanding the genetic mobilization of carbapenemase genes is paramount in preventing their dissemination. Here we review the carbapenemases found in A. baumannii and present an overview of the current knowledge of contributions of the various HGT mechanisms to the molecular epidemiology of carbapenem resistance in this relevant opportunistic pathogen.

  20. Investigation of possible horizontal gene transfer from transgenic rice to soil microorganisms in paddy rice field. (United States)

    Kim, Sung Eun; Moon, Jae Sun; Kim, Jung Kyu; Choi, Won Sik; Lee, Sang Han; Kim, Sung Uk


    In order to monitor the possibility of horizontal gene transfer between transgenic rice and microorganisms in paddy rice field, the gene flow from bifunctional fusion (TPSP) rice containing trehalose-6-phosphate synthase and phosphatase to microorganisms in soils was investigated. The soil samples collected every month from the paddy rice field during June, 2004 to March, 2006 were investigated by multiplex PCR, Southern hybridization, and amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP). The TPSP gene from soil genomics DNAs was not detected by PCR. Soil genomic DNAs were not shown its homologies on the Southern blotting data, indicating that gene-transfer did not occur during the last two years in paddy rice field. In addition, the AFLP band patterns produced by both soil genomic DNAs extracted from transgenic and non-transgenic rice field appeared similar to each other when analyzed by NTSYSpc program. Thus, these data suggest that transgenic rice does not give a significant impact on the communities of soil microorganisms although long-term observation may be needed.

  1. Retroviral endostatin gene transfer inhibits human colon cancer cell growth in vivo

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    陈卫昌; 傅建新; 刘强; 阮长耿; 萧树东


    Objective To investigate the therapeutic effect of retroviral endostatin gene transfer on the human colon cancer cell line, LoVo.Methods A retroviral vector pLESSN expressing secretable endostatin was constructed and packaged with a titer of 8.2×105 CFU/ml. A LoVo cell line was subjected to retrovirus-mediated endostatin gene transfer. The proviral integration of endostatin was analyzed with PCR. The function of endostatin was tested by MTT assay in vitro and a mouse xenograft model in vivo.Results After transfection and superinfection, amphotropic retrovirus was collected, and transduction with amphotropic retroviruses resulted in endostatin proviral integration. The endostatin secreted by transduced LoVo cells markedly inhibited endothelial cell growth up to 67% (P<0.001), compared with the control cells. The gene expression of endostatin in LoVo colon tumor cells significantly inhibited tumor growth in vivo. There was an 86% reduction in tumor size in the endostatin-transduced group, accompanied by a reduction in vessels, compared with the control group (P<0.01). Conclusion Retroviruses can allow functional expression of the endostatin gene in human colon tumors, showing promise for an antitumor strategy using antiangiogenesis.

  2. Mutations of the microsomal triglyceride-transfer-protein gene in abetalipoproteinemia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Narcisi, T.M.E.; Shoulders, C.C.; Chester, S.A. [Hammersmith Hospital, London (United Kingdom)] [and others


    Elevated plasma levels of apolipoprotein B (apoB)-containing lipoproteins constitute a major risk factor for the development of coronary heart disease. In the rare recessively inherited disorder abetalipoproteinemia (ABL) the production of apoB-containing lipoproteins is abolished, despite no abnormality of the apoB gene. In the current study we have characterized the gene encoding a microsomal triglyceride-transfer protein (MTP), localized to chromosome 4q22-24, and have identified a mutation of the MTP gene in both alleles of all individuals in a cohort of eight patients with classical ABL. Each mutant allele is predicted to encode a truncated form of MTP with a variable number of aberrant amino acids at its C-terminal end. Expression of genetically engineered forms of MTP in Cos-1 cells indicates that the C-terminal portion of MTP is necessary for triglyceride-transfer activity. Deletion of 20 amino acids from the carboxyl terminus of the 894-amino-acid protein and a missense mutation of cysteine 878 to serine both abolished activity. These results establish that defects of the MTP gene are the predominant, if not sole, cause of hereditary ABL and that an intact carboxyl terminus is necessary for activity. 49 refs., 4 figs., 5 tabs.

  3. Phylogeny of nodulation and nitrogen-fixation genes in Bradyrhizobium: supporting evidence for the theory of monophyletic origin, and spread and maintenance by both horizontal and vertical transfer. (United States)

    Menna, Pâmela; Hungria, Mariangela


    /housekeeping genes, in addition to shorter nodY/K sequences and the absence of nodZ, highlights a co-evolution process. Additionally, in a group of B. japonicum strains that were symbionts of soybean, vertical transfer seemed to represent the main genetic event. In conclusion, clustering of nodA and nifH gives additional support to the theory of monophyletic origin of the symbiotic genes in Bradyrhizobium and, in addition to the analysis of nodY/K and nodZ, indicates spread and maintenance of nod and nif genes through both vertical and horizontal transmission, apparently with the dominance of one or other of these events in some groups of strains.

  4. Complete resequencing of 40 genomes reveals domestication events and genes in silkworm (Bombyx)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Xia, Qingyou; Guo, Yiran; Zhang, Ze;


    A single-base pair resolution silkworm genetic variation map was constructed from 40 domesticated and wild silkworms, each sequenced to approximately threefold coverage, representing 99.88% of the genome. We identified ~16 million single-nucleotide polymorphisms, many indels, and structural...... variations. We find that the domesticated silkworms are clearly genetically differentiated from the wild ones, but they have maintained large levels of genetic variability, suggesting a short domestication event involving a large number of individuals. We also identified signals of selection at 354 candidate...... genes that may have been important during domestication, some of which have enriched expression in the silk gland, midgut, and testis. These data add to our understanding of the domestication processes and may have applications in devising pest control strategies and advancing the use of silkworms...

  5. Plant gene expression in the age of systems biology: integrating transcriptional and post-transcriptional events. (United States)

    Belostotsky, Dmitry A; Rose, Alan B


    The extensive mechanistic and regulatory interconnections between the various events of mRNA biogenesis are now recognized as a fundamental principle of eukaryotic gene expression, yet the specific details of the coupling between the various steps of mRNA biogenesis do differ, and sometimes dramatically, between the different kingdoms. In this review, we emphasize examples where plants must differ in this respect from other eukaryotes, and highlight a recurring trend of recruiting the conserved, versatile functional modules, which have evolved to support the general mRNA biogenesis reactions, for plant-specific functions. We also argue that elucidating the inner workings of the plant 'mRNA factory' is essential for accomplishing the ambitious goal of building the 'virtual plant'.

  6. Retrovirus-Mediated Gene Transfer in Immortalization of Progenitor Hair Cell Lines in Newborn Rat

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANG Yuan; ZHAI Suo-qiang; SONG Wei; GUO Wei; ZHENG Gui-liang; HU Yin-yan


    Objective To present an experimental method that allows isolation of greater epithelial ridge (GER) and lesser epithelial ridge(LER) cells from postnatal rat cochleae using a combinatorial approach of enzymatic digestion and mechanical separation and to investigate a retrovirus-mediated gene transfer technique for its possibl utility in immortalization of the GER and LER cell lines, in an effort to establish an in vitro model system of hair cell differentiation. Methods GER and LER cells were dissected from postnatal rat cochleae and immortalized by transferring the SV40 large T antigen using a retrovirus. The established cell lines were confirmed through morphology observation, immunnocytochemical staining and RT-PCR analysis. The Hathl gene was transferred into the cell lines using adenovirus-mediated techniques to explore their potential to differentiate into hair cells. Results The established cell lines were stably maintained for more than 20 passages and displayed many features similar to primary GER and LER cells. They grew in patches and assumed a polygonal morphology. Immunostaining showed labeling by SV40 large T antigen and Islet1 (a specific marker for GER and LER). All passages of the cell lines expressed SV40 large T antigen on RT-PCR analysis. The cells also showed the capability to differenti-ate into hair cell-like cells when forced to express Hathl. Conclusion Retrovirus-mediated gene transfer can be used in establishing immortalized progenitor hair cell lines in newborn rat, which may provide an invaluable system for studying hair cell differentiation and regeneration for new treatment of sensory hearing loss caused by hair cell loss.

  7. Detecting horizontally transferred and essential genes based on dinucleotide relative abundance. (United States)

    Baran, Robert H; Ko, Hanseok


    Various methods have been developed to detect horizontal gene transfer in bacteria, based on anomalous nucleotide composition, assuming that compositional features undergo amelioration in the host genome. Evolutionary theory predicts the inevitability of false positives when essential sequences are strongly conserved. Foreign genes could become more detectable on the basis of their higher order compositions if such features ameliorate more rapidly and uniformly than lower order features. This possibility is tested by comparing the heterogeneities of bacterial genomes with respect to strand-independent first- and second-order features, (i) G + C content and (ii) dinucleotide relative abundance, in 1 kb segments. Although statistical analysis confirms that (ii) is less inhomogeneous than (i) in all 12 species examined, extreme anomalies with respect to (ii) in the Escherichia coli K12 genome are typically co-located with essential genes.

  8. Evolutionary Origins of the Eukaryotic Shikimate Pathway: Gene Fusions, Horizontal Gene Transfer, and Endosymbiotic Replacements†



    Currently the shikimate pathway is reported as a metabolic feature of prokaryotes, ascomycete fungi, apicomplexans, and plants. The plant shikimate pathway enzymes have similarities to prokaryote homologues and are largely active in chloroplasts, suggesting ancestry from the plastid progenitor genome. Toxoplasma gondii, which also possesses an alga-derived plastid organelle, encodes a shikimate pathway with similarities to ascomycete genes, including a five-enzyme pentafunctional arom. These ...

  9. Mapping of metastasis suppressor genes for prostate cancer by microcell-mediated chromosome transfer

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    Aim: To identify the metastasis suppressor genes for prostate cancer. Methods: A copy of human chromosomes was introduced into the highly metastatic Dunning R-3327 rat prostate cancer cells by the use of microcell-mediated chromosome transfer. Relationships between the size of human chromosomes introduced into microcell hybrid clones and the number of lung metastases produced by the clones were analyzed to determine which part of human chromosomes contained the metastasis suppressor gene (s) for prostate cancer. To determine portions of human chromosomes introduced, G-banding chromosomal analysis, fluorescence in situ hybridization analysis, and polymerase chain reaction analysis were performed. Results: Each of microcell hybrid clones containing human chromosomes 7, 8, 10, 11, 12, or 17 showed decreased ability to metastasize to the lung without any loss of ttmaorigenicity. This demonstrates that these human chromosomes contain metastasis suppressor genes for prostate cancer. Spontaneous deletion of portions of human chromosomes was observed in the human chromosome 7, 10, 11, 12, and 17 studies. In the human chromosome 8 study, irradiated microcell-mediated chromosome transfer was performed to enrich chromosomal ann deletions of human chromosome 8. Molecular and cytogenetic analyses of microcell hybrid clones demonstrated that metastasis suppressor genes on human chromosomes were located on 7q21-22, 7q31.2-32, 8p21-12, 10q11-22, 11p13-11.2, 12p11-q13, 12q24-ter, and 17pter-q23. KAI1 and MKK4/SEKI were identified as metastasis suppressor genes from 11p11.2 and 17p12, respectively. Conclusion: This assay system is useful to identify metastasis suppressor gene (s) for prostate cancer.

  10. The advantages and disadvantages of horizontal gene transfer and the emergence of the first species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Higgs Paul G


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Horizontal Gene Transfer (HGT is beneficial to a cell if the acquired gene confers a useful function, but is detrimental if the gene has no function, if it is incompatible with existing genes, or if it is a selfishly replicating mobile element. If the balance of these effects is beneficial on average, we would expect cells to evolve high rates of acceptance of horizontally transferred genes, whereas if it is detrimental, cells should reduce the rate of HGT as far as possible. It has been proposed that the rate of HGT was very high in the early stages of prokaryotic evolution, and hence there were no separate lineages of organisms. Only when the HGT rate began to fall, would lineages begin to emerge with their own distinct sets of genes. Evolution would then become more tree-like. This phenomenon has been called the Darwinian Threshold. Results We study a model for genome evolution that incorporates both beneficial and detrimental effects of HGT. We show that if rate of gene loss during genome replication is high, as was probably the case in the earliest genomes before the time of the last universal common ancestor, then a high rate of HGT is favourable. HGT leads to the rapid spread of new genes and allows the build-up of larger, fitter genomes than could be achieved by purely vertical inheritance. In contrast, if the gene loss rate is lower, as in modern prokaryotes, then HGT is, on average, unfavourable. Conclusions Modern cells should therefore evolve to reduce HGT if they can, although the prevalence of independently replicating mobile elements and viruses may mean that cells cannot avoid HGT in practice. In the model, natural selection leads to gradual improvement of the replication accuracy and gradual decrease in the optimal rate of HGT. By clustering genomes based on gene content, we show that there are no separate lineages of organisms when the rate of HGT is high; however, as the rate of HGT decreases, a tree

  11. Bap-dependent biofilm formation by pathogenic species of Staphylococcus: evidence of horizontal gene transfer? (United States)

    Tormo, M Angeles; Knecht, Erwin; Götz, Friedrich; Lasa, Iñigo; Penadés, José R


    The biofilm-associated protein (Bap) is a surface protein implicated in biofilm formation by Staphylococcus aureus isolated from chronic mastitis infections. The bap gene is carried in a putative composite transposon inserted in SaPIbov2, a mobile staphylococcal pathogenicity island. In this study, bap orthologue genes from several staphylococcal species, including Staphylococcus epidermidis, Staphylococcus chromogenes, Staphylococcus xylosus, Staphylococcus simulans and Staphylococcus hyicus, were identified, cloned and sequenced. Sequence analysis comparison of the bap gene from these species revealed a very high sequence similarity, suggesting the horizontal gene transfer of SaPIbov2 amongst them. However, sequence analyses of the flanking region revealed that the bap gene of these species was not contained in the SaPIbov2 pathogenicity island. Although they did not contain the icaADBC operon, all the coagulase-negative staphylococcal isolates harbouring bap were strong biofilm producers. Disruption of the bap gene in S. epidermidis abolished its capacity to form a biofilm, whereas heterologous complementation of a biofilm-negative strain of S. aureus with the Bap protein from S. epidermidis bestowed the capacity to form a biofilm on a polystyrene surface. Altogether, these results demonstrate that Bap orthologues from coagulase-negative staphylococci induce an alternative mechanism of biofilm formation that is independent of the PIA/PNAG exopolysaccharide.

  12. Changes in glucose metabolism and gene expression after transfer of anti-angiogenic genes in rat hepatoma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Haberkorn, Uwe; Altmann, Annette [University of Heidelberg, INF 400, Department of Nuclear Medicine, Heidelberg (Germany); DKFZ and University of Heidelberg, INF 280, Clinical Cooperation Unit Nuclear Medicine, Heidelberg (Germany); Hoffend, Johannes [University of Heidelberg, INF 400, Department of Nuclear Medicine, Heidelberg (Germany); Schmidt, Kerstin [University of Heidelberg, INF 400, Department of Nuclear Medicine, Heidelberg (Germany); DKFZ and University of Heidelberg, INF 280, Clinical Cooperation Unit Nuclear Medicine, Heidelberg (Germany); University of Heidelberg, Anatomy and Developmental Biology, Medical Faculty Mannheim, Mannheim (Germany); Bonaterra, Gabriel A.; Kinscherf, Ralf [University of Heidelberg, Anatomy and Developmental Biology, Medical Faculty Mannheim, Mannheim (Germany); Dimitrakopoulou-Strauss, Antonia; Strauss, Ludwig G. [DKFZ and University of Heidelberg, INF 280, Clinical Cooperation Unit Nuclear Medicine, Heidelberg (Germany); Eisenhut, Michael [DKFZ, INF 280, Department of Radiopharmaceutical Chemistry, Heidelberg (Germany)


    Human troponin I (TROP), the soluble receptor for vascular endothelial growth factor (sFLT) and angiostatin (ASTAT) are potent inhibitors of endothelial cell proliferation, angiogenesis and tumour growth in vivo. Transfer of these genes into tumours may induce changes not only in perfusion, but also more general ones such as changes in metabolism. The aim of this study was to assess these reactions using FDG-PET and high-throughput methods such as gene profiling. We established Morris hepatoma (MH3924A) cell lines expressing TROP, sFLT or ASTAT and quantified {sup 18}F-fluorodeoxyglucose ({sup 18}FDG) uptake by dynamic positron emission tomography (PET) after tumour inoculation in ACI rats. Furthermore, expression of glucose transporter-1 and -3 (GLUT-1 and GLUT-3) as well as hexokinase-1 and -2 were investigated by RT-PCR and immunohistomorphometry. In addition, gene array analyses were performed. {sup 18}FDG uptake, vascular fraction and distribution volume were significantly higher in all genetically modified tumours. Immunohistomorphometry showed an increased percentage of hexokinase-1 and -2 as well as GLUT-1 and -3 immunoreactive (ir) cells. Using gene arrays and comparing all three groups of genetically modified tumours, we found upregulated expression of 36 genes related to apoptosis, signal transduction, stress or metabolism. TROP-, sFLT- or ASTAT-expressing MH3924A tumours show enhanced influx of {sup 18}FDG, which seems to be caused by several factors: enhanced exchange of nutrients between blood and tumour, increased amounts of glucose transporters and hexokinases, and increased expression of genes related to apoptosis, matrix and stress, which induce an increased demand for glucose. (orig.)

  13. Bioresorbable microporous stents deliver recombinant adenovirus gene transfer vectors to the arterial wall. (United States)

    Ye, Y W; Landau, C; Willard, J E; Rajasubramanian, G; Moskowitz, A; Aziz, S; Meidell, R S; Eberhart, R C


    The use of intravascular stents as an adjunct for percutaneous transluminal revascularization is limited by two principal factors, acute thrombosis and neointimal proliferation, resulting in restenosis. To overcome these limitations, we have investigated the potential of microporous bioresorbable polymer stents formed from poly(L-lactic acid) (PLLA)/poly(epsilon-caprolactone) (PCL) blends to function both to provide mechanical support and as reservoirs for local delivery of therapeutic molecules and particles to the vessel wall. Tubular PLLA/PCL stents were fabricated by the flotation-precipitation method, and helical stents were produced by a casting/winding technique. Hybrid structures in which a tubular sheath is deposited on a helical skeleton were also generated. Using a two-stage solvent swelling technique, polyethylene oxide has been incorporated into these stents to improve hydrophilicity and water uptake, and to facilitate the ability of these devices to function as drug carriers. Stents modified in this manner retain axial and radial mechanical strength sufficient to stabilize the vessel wall against elastic recoil caused by vasoconstrictive and mechanical forces. Because of the potential of direct gene transfer into the vessel wall to ameliorate thrombosis and neointimal proliferation, we have investigated the capacity of these polymer stents to function in the delivery of recombinant adenovirus vectors to the vessel wall. In vitro, virus stock was observed to readily absorb into, and elute from these devices in an infectious form, with suitable kinetics. Successful gene transfer and expression has been demonstrated following implantation of polymer stents impregnated with a recombinant adenovirus carrying a nuclear-localizing betaGal reporter gene into rabbit carotid arteries. These studies suggest that surface-modified polymer stents may ultimately be useful adjunctive devices for both mechanical support and gene transfer during percutaneous

  14. Heavy chain transfer by tumor necrosis factor-stimulated gene 6 to the bikunin proteoglycan. (United States)

    Lamkin, Elliott; Cheng, Georgiana; Calabro, Anthony; Hascall, Vincent C; Joo, Eun Ji; Li, Lingyun; Linhardt, Robert J; Lauer, Mark E


    We present data that hyaluronan (HA) polysaccharides, about 14-86 monosaccharides in length, are capable of accepting only a single heavy chain (HC) from inter-α-inhibitor via transfer by tumor necrosis factor-stimulated gene 6 (TSG-6) and that this transfer is irreversible. We propose that either the sulfate groups (or the sulfation pattern) at the reducing end of the chondroitin sulfate (CS) chain of bikunin, or the core protein itself, enables the bikunin proteoglycan (PG) to accept more than a single HC and permits TSG-6 to transfer these HCs from its relatively small CS chain to HA. To test these hypotheses, we investigated HC transfer to the intact CS chain of the bikunin PG, and to the free chain of bikunin. We observed that both the free CS chain and the intact bikunin PG were only able to accept a single HC from inter-α-inhibitor via transfer by TSG-6 and that HCs could be swapped from the bikunin PG and its free CS chain to HA. Furthermore, a significant portion of the bikunin PG was unable to accept a single heavy chain. We discuss explanations for these observations, including the intracellular assembly of inter-α-inhibitor. In summary, these data demonstrate that the sulfation of the CS chain of bikunin and/or its core protein promote HC transfer by TSG-6 to its relatively short CS chain, although they are insufficient to enable the CS chain of bikunin to accept more than one HC in the absence of other cofactors. © 2015 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  15. Fat-to-glucose interconversion by hydrodynamic transfer of two glyoxylate cycle enzyme genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marzo F


    Full Text Available Abstract The glyoxylate cycle, which is well characterized in higher plants and some microorganisms but not in vertebrates, is able to bypass the citric acid cycle to achieve fat-to-carbohydrate interconversion. In this context, the hydrodynamic transfer of two glyoxylate cycle enzymes, such as isocytrate lyase (ICL and malate synthase (MS, could accomplish the shift of using fat for the synthesis of glucose. Therefore, 20 mice weighing 23.37 ± 0.96 g were hydrodinamically gene transferred by administering into the tail vein a bolus with ICL and MS. After 36 hours, body weight, plasma glucose, respiratory quotient and energy expenditure were measured. The respiratory quotient was increased by gene transfer, which suggests that a higher carbohydrate/lipid ratio is oxidized in such animals. This application could help, if adequate protocols are designed, to induce fat utilization for glucose synthesis, which might be eventually useful to reduce body fat depots in situations of obesity and diabetes.

  16. Effective generation of transgenic pigs and mice by linker based sperm-mediated gene transfer.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shih Ping Yao


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Transgenic animals have become valuable tools for both research and applied purposes. The current method of gene transfer, microinjection, which is widely used in transgenic mouse production, has only had limited success in producing transgenic animals of larger or higher species. Here, we report a linker based sperm-mediated gene transfer method (LB-SMGT that greatly improves the production efficiency of large transgenic animals. Results The linker protein, a monoclonal antibody (mAb C, is reactive to a surface antigen on sperm of all tested species including pig, mouse, chicken, cow, goat, sheep, and human. mAb C is a basic protein that binds to DNA through ionic interaction allowing exogenous DNA to be linked specifically to sperm. After fertilization of the egg, the DNA is shown to be successfully integrated into the genome of viable pig and mouse offspring with germ-line transfer to the F1 generation at a highly efficient rate: 37.5% of pigs and 33% of mice. The integration is demonstrated again by FISH analysis and F2 transmission in pigs. Furthermore, expression of the transgene is demonstrated in 61% (35/57 of transgenic pigs (F0 generation. Conclusions Our data suggests that LB-SMGT could be used to generate transgenic animals efficiently in many different species.

  17. Aspirin exposure reveals novel genes associated with platelet function and cardiovascular events. (United States)

    Voora, Deepak; Cyr, Derek; Lucas, Joseph; Chi, Jen-Tsan; Dungan, Jennifer; McCaffrey, Timothy A; Katz, Richard; Newby, L Kristin; Kraus, William E; Becker, Richard C; Ortel, Thomas L; Ginsburg, Geoffrey S


    The aim of this study was to develop ribonucleic acid (RNA) profiles that could serve as novel biomarkers for the response to aspirin. Aspirin reduces death and myocardial infarction (MI), suggesting that aspirin interacts with biological pathways that may underlie these events. Aspirin was administered, followed by whole-blood RNA microarray profiling, in a discovery cohort of healthy volunteers (HV1) (n = 50) and 2 validation cohorts of healthy volunteers (HV2) (n = 53) and outpatient cardiology patients (OPC) (n = 25). Platelet function was assessed using the platelet function score (PFS) in HV1 and HV2 and the VerifyNow Aspirin Test (Accumetrics, Inc., San Diego, California) in OPC. Bayesian sparse factor analysis identified sets of coexpressed transcripts, which were examined for associations with PFS in HV1 and validated in HV2 and OPC. Proteomic analysis confirmed the association of validated transcripts in platelet proteins. Validated gene sets were tested for association with death or MI in 2 patient cohorts (n = 587 total) from RNA samples collected at cardiac catheterization. A set of 60 coexpressed genes named the "aspirin response signature" (ARS) was associated with PFS in HV1 (r = -0.31, p = 0.03), HV2 (r = -0.34, Bonferroni p = 0.03), and OPC (p = 0.046). Corresponding proteins for the 17 ARS genes were identified in the platelet proteome, of which 6 were associated with PFS. The ARS was associated with death or MI in both patient cohorts (odds ratio: 1.2 [p = 0.01]; hazard ratio: 1.5 [p = 0.001]), independent of cardiovascular risk factors. Compared with traditional risk factors, reclassification (net reclassification index = 31% to 37%, p ≤ 0.0002) was improved by including the ARS or 1 of its genes, ITGA2B. RNA profiles of platelet-specific genes are novel biomarkers for identifying patients who do not respond adequately to aspirin and who are at risk for death or MI. Copyright © 2013 American College of Cardiology Foundation. Published by

  18. Reconciling gene and genome duplication events: using multiple nuclear gene families to infer the phylogeny of the aquatic plant family Pontederiaceae. (United States)

    Ness, Rob W; Graham, Sean W; Barrett, Spencer C H


    Most plant phylogenetic inference has used DNA sequence data from the plastid genome. This genome represents a single genealogical sample with no recombination among genes, potentially limiting the resolution of evolutionary relationships in some contexts. In contrast, nuclear DNA is inherently more difficult to employ for phylogeny reconstruction because major mutational events in the genome, including polyploidization, gene duplication, and gene extinction can result in homologous gene copies that are difficult to identify as orthologs or paralogs. Gene tree parsimony (GTP) can be used to infer the rooted species tree by fitting gene genealogies to species trees while simultaneously minimizing the estimated number of duplications needed to reconcile conflicts among them. Here, we use GTP for five nuclear gene families and a previously published plastid data set to reconstruct the phylogenetic backbone of the aquatic plant family Pontederiaceae. Plastid-based phylogenetic studies strongly supported extensive paraphyly of Eichhornia (one of the four major genera) but also depicted considerable ambiguity concerning the true root placement for the family. Our results indicate that species trees inferred from the nuclear genes (alone and in combination with the plastid data) are highly congruent with gene trees inferred from plastid data alone. Consideration of optimal and suboptimal gene tree reconciliations place the root of the family at (or near) a branch leading to the rare and locally restricted E. meyeri. We also explore methods to incorporate uncertainty in individual gene trees during reconciliation by considering their individual bootstrap profiles and relate inferred excesses of gene duplication events on individual branches to whole-genome duplication events inferred for the same branches. Our study improves understanding of the phylogenetic history of Pontederiaceae and also demonstrates the utility of GTP for phylogenetic analysis.

  19. Write error rate of spin-transfer-torque random access memory including micromagnetic effects using rare event enhancement

    CERN Document Server

    Roy, Urmimala; Register, Leonard F; Banerjee, Sanjay K


    Spin-transfer-torque random access memory (STT-RAM) is a promising candidate for the next-generation of random-access-memory due to improved scalability, read-write speeds and endurance. However, the write pulse duration must be long enough to ensure a low write error rate (WER), the probability that a bit will remain unswitched after the write pulse is turned off, in the presence of stochastic thermal effects. WERs on the scale of 10$^{-9}$ or lower are desired. Within a macrospin approximation, WERs can be calculated analytically using the Fokker-Planck method to this point and beyond. However, dynamic micromagnetic effects within the bit can affect and lead to faster switching. Such micromagnetic effects can be addressed via numerical solution of the stochastic Landau-Lifshitz-Gilbert-Slonczewski (LLGS) equation. However, determining WERs approaching 10$^{-9}$ would require well over 10$^{9}$ such independent simulations, which is infeasible. In this work, we explore calculation of WER using "rare event en...

  20. Lateral Gene Transfer in a Heavy Metal-Contaminated-Groundwater Microbial Community. (United States)

    Hemme, Christopher L; Green, Stefan J; Rishishwar, Lavanya; Prakash, Om; Pettenato, Angelica; Chakraborty, Romy; Deutschbauer, Adam M; Van Nostrand, Joy D; Wu, Liyou; He, Zhili; Jordan, I King; Hazen, Terry C; Arkin, Adam P; Kostka, Joel E; Zhou, Jizhong


    Unraveling the drivers controlling the response and adaptation of biological communities to environmental change, especially anthropogenic activities, is a central but poorly understood issue in ecology and evolution. Comparative genomics studies suggest that lateral gene transfer (LGT) is a major force driving microbial genome evolution, but its role in the evolution of microbial communities remains elusive. To delineate the importance of LGT in mediating the response of a groundwater microbial community to heavy metal contamination, representative Rhodanobacter reference genomes were sequenced and compared to shotgun metagenome sequences. 16S rRNA gene-based amplicon sequence analysis indicated that Rhodanobacter populations were highly abundant in contaminated wells with low pHs and high levels of nitrate and heavy metals but remained rare in the uncontaminated wells. Sequence comparisons revealed that multiple geochemically important genes, including genes encoding Fe(2+)/Pb(2+) permeases, most denitrification enzymes, and cytochrome c553, were native to Rhodanobacter and not subjected to LGT. In contrast, the Rhodanobacter pangenome contained a recombinational hot spot in which numerous metal resistance genes were subjected to LGT and/or duplication. In particular, Co(2+)/Zn(2+)/Cd(2+) efflux and mercuric resistance operon genes appeared to be highly mobile within Rhodanobacter populations. Evidence of multiple duplications of a mercuric resistance operon common to most Rhodanobacter strains was also observed. Collectively, our analyses indicated the importance of LGT during the evolution of groundwater microbial communities in response to heavy metal contamination, and a conceptual model was developed to display such adaptive evolutionary processes for explaining the extreme dominance of Rhodanobacter populations in the contaminated groundwater microbiome. Lateral gene transfer (LGT), along with positive selection and gene duplication, are the three main

  1. Generation of CRISPR/Cas9-mediated gene-targeted pigs via somatic cell nuclear transfer. (United States)

    Zhou, Xiaoqing; Xin, Jige; Fan, Nana; Zou, Qingjian; Huang, Jiao; Ouyang, Zhen; Zhao, Yu; Zhao, Bentian; Liu, Zhaoming; Lai, Sisi; Yi, Xiaoling; Guo, Lin; Esteban, Miguel A; Zeng, Yangzhi; Yang, Huaqiang; Lai, Liangxue


    The domestic pig has been widely used as an important large animal model. Precise and efficient genetic modification in pig provides a great promise in biomedical research. Recently, clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat (CRISPR)/CRISPR-associated (Cas) system has been successfully used to produce many gene-targeted animals. However, these animals have been generated by co-injection of Cas9 mRNA and single-guide RNA (sgRNA) into one-cell stage embryos, which mostly resulted in mosaicism of the modification. One or two rounds of further breeding should be performed to obtain homozygotes with identical genotype and phenotype. To address this issue, gene-targeted somatic cells can be used as donor for somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) to produce gene-targeted animals with single and identical mutations. In this study, we applied Cas9/sgRNAs to effectively direct gene editing in porcine fetal fibroblasts and then mutant cell colonies were used as donor to generate homozygous gene-targeted pigs through single round of SCNT. As a result, we successfully obtained 15 tyrosinase (TYR) biallelic mutant pigs and 20 PARK2 and PINK1 double-gene knockout (KO) pigs. They were all homozygous and no off-target mutagenesis was detected by comprehensive analysis. TYR (-/-) pigs showed typical albinism and the expression of parkin and PINK1 were depleted in PARK2 (-/-)/PINK1 (-/-) pigs. The results demonstrated that single- or double-gene targeted pigs can be effectively achieved by using the CRISPR/Cas9 system combined with SCNT without mosaic mutation and detectable off-target effects. This gene-editing system provides an efficient, rapid, and less costly manner to generate genetically modified pigs or other large animals.

  2. [Post-translational ligation and function of dual-vector transferred split CFTR gene]. (United States)

    Zhu, Fu-Xiang; Liu, Ze-Long; Qu, Hui-Ge; Chi, Xiao-Yan


    The mutation of cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene leads to an autosomal recessive genetic disorder cystic fibrosis (CF). The gene therapy for CF using adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors delivering CFTR gene is restricted by the contents limitation of AAV vectors. In this study the split CFTR genes severed at its regulatory domain were delivered by a dual-vector system with an intein-mediated protein trans-splicing as a technique to investigate the post-translational ligation of CFTR half proteins and its function as a chloride ion channel. A pair of eukaryotic expression vectors was constructed by breaking the human CFTR cDNA before Ser712 codon and fusing with Ssp DnaB intein coding sequences. After co-transfection into baby hamster kidney (BHK) cells followed by transient expression, patch clamps were carried out to record the chloride current of whole-cell and the activity of a single channel, and the ligation of two halves of CFTR was observed by Western blotting. The results showed that the intein-fused half genes co-transfected cells displayed a high whole cell chloride current and activity of a single channel indicating the functional recovery of chloride channel, and an intact CFTR protein band was figured out by CFTR-specific antibodies indicating that intein can efficiently ligate the separately expressed half CFTR proteins. The data demonstrated that protein splicing strategy could be used as a strategy in delivering CFTR gene by two vectors, encouraging our ongoing research program on dual AAV vector system based gene transfer in gene therapy for cystic fibrosis.

  3. Globin gene transfer for treatment of the beta-thalassemias and sickle cell disease. (United States)

    Sadelain, Michel; Rivella, Stefano; Lisowski, Leszek; Samakoglu, Selda; Rivière, Isabelle


    The beta-thalassemias and sickle cell disease are severe congenital anemias that are caused by mutations that alter the production of the beta chain of hemoglobin. Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) transplantation is curative, but this therapeutic option is not available to the majority of patients. The transfer of a functional globin gene in autologous HCSs thus represents a highly attractive alternative treatment. This strategy, simple in principle, raises major challenges in terms of controlling the expression of the globin transgene, which ideally should be erythroid specific, differentiation-stage restricted, elevated, position independent, and sustained over time. Using lentiviral vectors, we have demonstrated that an optimised combination of proximal and distal transcriptional control elements permits lineage-specific, elevated expression of the beta-globin gene, resulting in therapeutic hemoglobin production and correction of anemia in beta-thalassemic mice. Several groups have now confirmed and extended these findings in various mouse models of severe hemoglobinopathies, thus generating enthusiasm for a genetic treatment based on globin gene transfer. Furthermore, globin vectors represent a general paradigm for the regulation of transgene function and the improvement of vector safety by restricting transgene expression to the differentiated progeny within a single lineage, thereby reducing the risk of activating oncogenes in hematopoietic progenitors. Here we review the principles underlying the genesis of regulated vectors for stem cell therapy.

  4. A Versatile Vector for Gene and Oligonucleotide Transfer into Cells in Culture and in vivo: Polyethylenimine (United States)

    Boussif, Otmane; Lezoualc'h, Frank; Zanta, Maria Antonietta; Djavaheri Mergny, Mojgan; Scherman, Daniel; Demeneix, Barbara; Behr, Jean-Paul


    Several polycations possessing substantial buffering capacity below physiological pH, such as lipopolyamines and polyamidoamine polymers, are efficient transfection agents per se-i.e., without the addition of cell targeting or membrane-disruption agents. This observation led us to test the cationic polymer polyethylenimine (PEI) for its genedelivery potential. Indeed, every third atom of PEI is a protonable amino nitrogen atom, which makes the polymeric network an effective "proton sponge" at virtually any pH. Luciferase reporter gene transfer with this polycation into a variety of cell lines and primary cells gave results comparable to, or even better than, lipopolyamines. Cytotoxicity was low and seen only at concentrations well above those required for optimal transfection. Delivery of oligonucleotides into embryonic neurons was followed by using a fluorescent probe. Virtually all neurons showed nuclear labeling, with no toxic effects. The optimal PEI cation/anion balance for in vitro transfection is only slightly on the cationic side, which is advantageous for in vivo delivery. Indeed, intracerebral luciferase gene transfer into newborn mice gave results comparable (for a given amount of DNA) to the in vitro transfection of primary rat brain endothelial cells or chicken embryonic neurons. Together, these properties make PEI a promising vector for gene therapy and an outstanding core for the design of more sophisticated devices. Our hypothesis is that its efficiency relies on extensive lysosome buffering that protects DNA from nuclease degradation, and consequent lysosomal swelling and rupture that provide an escape mechanism for the PEI/DNA particles.

  5. Insulin mediated hemodynamic responses in spontaneous hypertensive rats (SHRs): effect of chromosome 4 gene transfer. (United States)

    Rao, Sumangala P; McRae, Crystal; Lapanowski, Karen; Churchill, Monique; Kurtz, Theodore W; Dunbar, Joseph C


    The spontaneous hypertensive rat (SHR) is a widely studied model of essential hypertension and has been reported to exhibit alterations in carbohydrate and lipid metabolism. Genetic linkage studies implicated that SHR carries deletion variant of Cd36 gene of chromosome 4, the gene that encodes fatty acid transporter. Thus it could be possible that primary genetic defect in SHR is compromised tissue utilization of fatty acid that would form the basis for the pathogenesis of hyperinsulinemia, insulin resistance and insulin-mediated responses. We measured both the hemodynamic and metabolic responses to insulin in SHR in comparison with the chromosome congenic spontaneous hypertensive rats (cSHRs) (rats in which piece of chromosome 4 containing wild type Cd36 was integrated into the SHR genome). A bolus infusion of insulin increased iliac conductance and decreased blood pressure in Wistar Kyoto (WKY) rats. However, in SHR insulin did not reduce blood pressure as in WKY but after about 15 min it significantly enhanced blood pressure and reduced iliac conductance. Whereas in cSHR insulin did not reduce blood pressure as in WKY rats. However, pressor responses to insulin were eliminated by chromosome 4 gene transfer. Glucose clearance was significantly slower in both SHR and cSHR. Glucose tolerance test revealed that SHR are hyperinsulinemic and insulin resistant. These findings indicate that transfer of segment of chromosome 4 from Brown Norway rats onto spontaneous hypertensive background eliminates hyperinsulinemia and pressor effects of insulin.

  6. Efficient lentiviral gene transfer to canine repopulating cells using an overnight transduction protocol. (United States)

    Horn, Peter A; Keyser, Kirsten A; Peterson, Laura J; Neff, Tobias; Thomasson, Bobbie M; Thompson, Jesse; Kiem, Hans-Peter


    The use of lentiviral vectors for the transduction of hematopoietic stem cells has evoked much interest owing to their ability to stably integrate into the genome of nondividing cells. However, published large animal studies have reported highly variable gene transfer rates of typically less than 1%. Here we report the use of lentiviral vectors for the transduction of canine CD34(+) hematopoietic repopulating cells using a very short, 18-hour transduction protocol. We compared lentiviral transduction of hematopoietic repopulating cells from either stem cell factor (SCF)- and granulocyte-colony stimulating factor (G-CSF)-primed marrow or mobilized peripheral blood in a competitive repopulation assay in 3 dogs. All dogs engrafted rapidly within 9 days. Transgene expression was detected in all lineages (B cells, T cells, granulocytes, and red blood cells as well as platelets) indicating multilineage engraftment of transduced cells, with overall long-term marking levels of up to 12%. Gene transfer levels in mobilized peripheral blood cells were slightly higher than in primed marrow cells. In conclusion, we show efficient lentiviral transduction of canine repopulating cells using an overnight transduction protocol. These results have important implications for the design of stem cell gene therapy protocols, especially for those diseases in which the maintenance of stem cells in culture is a major limitation.

  7. Horizontal gene transfer of zinc and non-zinc forms of bacterial ribosomal protein S4

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    Luthey-Schulten Zaida


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The universal ribosomal protein S4 is essential for the initiation of small subunit ribosomal assembly and translational accuracy. Being part of the information processing machinery of the cell, the gene for S4 is generally thought of as being inherited vertically and has been used in concatenated gene phylogenies. Here we report the evolution of ribosomal protein S4 in relation to a broad sharing of zinc/non-zinc forms of the gene and study the scope of horizontal gene transfer (HGT of S4 during bacterial evolution. Results In this study we present the complex evolutionary history of ribosomal protein S4 using 660 bacterial genomes from 16 major bacterial phyla. According to conserved characteristics in the sequences, S4 can be classified into C+ (zinc-binding and C- (zinc-free variants, with 26 genomes (mainly from the class Clostridia containing genes for both. A maximum likelihood phylogenetic tree of the S4 sequences was incongruent with the standard bacterial phylogeny, indicating a departure from strict vertical inheritance. Further analysis using the genome content near the S4 genes, which are usually located in a conserved gene cluster, showed not only that HGT of the C- gene had occurred at various stages of bacterial evolution, but also that both the C- and C+ genes were present before the individual phyla diverged. To explain the latter, we theorize that a gene pool existed early in bacterial evolution from which bacteria could sample S4 gene variants, according to environmental conditions. The distribution of the C+/- variants for seven other zinc-binding ribosomal proteins in these 660 bacterial genomes is consistent with that seen for S4 and may shed light on the evolutionary pressures involved. Conclusion The complex history presented for "core" protein S4 suggests the existence of a gene pool before the emergence of bacterial lineages and reflects the pervasive nature of HGT in subsequent bacterial evolution

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

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    Huan eQiu


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

  9. Horizontal Gene Transfer of the Secretome Drives the Evolution of Bacterial Cooperation and Virulence (United States)

    Nogueira, Teresa; Rankin, Daniel J.; Touchon, Marie; Taddei, François; Brown, Sam P.; Rocha, Eduardo P.C.


    Summary Background Microbes engage in a remarkable array of cooperative behaviors, secreting shared proteins that are essential for foraging, shelter, microbial warfare, and virulence. These proteins are costly, rendering populations of cooperators vulnerable to exploitation by nonproducing cheaters arising by gene loss or migration. In such conditions, how can cooperation persist? Results Our model predicts that differential gene mobility drives intragenomic variation in investment in cooperative traits. More mobile loci generate stronger among-individual genetic correlations at these loci (higher relatedness) and thereby allow the maintenance of more cooperative traits via kin