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Sample records for reveal structural similarity

  1. Comparative mapping reveals similar linkage of functional genes to ...

    genes between O. sativa and B. napus may have consistent function and control similar traits, which may be ..... acea chromosomes reveals islands of conserved organization. ... 1998 Conserved structure and function of the Arabidopsis flow-.

  2. Crystal structures of the F and pSLT plasmid TraJ N-terminal regions reveal similar homodimeric PAS folds with functional interchangeability

    Lu, Jun; Wu, Ruiying; Adkins, Joshua N.; Joachimiak, Andrzej; Glover, Mark

    2014-09-16

    In the F-family of conjugative plasmids, TraJ is an essential transcriptional activator of the tra operon that encodes most of the proteins required for conjugation. Here we report for the first time the X-ray crystal structures of the TraJ N-terminal regions from the prototypic F plasmid (TraJF11-130) and from the Salmonella virulence plasmid pSLT (TraJpSLT 1-128). Both proteins form similar homodimeric Per-ARNT-Sim (PAS) fold structures. Mutational analysis reveals that the observed dimeric interface is critical for TraJF transcriptional activation, indicating that dimerization of TraJ is required for its in vivo function. An artificial ligand (oxidized dithiothreitol) occupies a cavity in the TraJF dimer interface, while a smaller cavity in corresponding region of the TraJpSLT structure lacks a ligand. Gas chromatography/mass spectrometry-electron ionization analysis of dithiothreitol-free TraJF suggests indole may be the natural TraJ ligand; however, disruption of the indole biosynthetic pathway does not affect TraJF function. Heterologous PAS domains from pSLT and R100 TraJ can functionally replace the TraJF PAS domain, suggesting that TraJ allelic specificity is mediated by the region C-terminal to the PAS domain.

  3. UPF201 Archaeal Specific Family Members Reveals Structural Similarity to RNA-Binding Proteins but Low Likelihood for RNA-Binding Function

    Rao, K.N.; Swaminathan, S.; Burley, S. K.

    2008-12-11

    We have determined X-ray crystal structures of four members of an archaeal specific family of proteins of unknown function (UPF0201; Pfam classification: DUF54) to advance our understanding of the genetic repertoire of archaea. Despite low pairwise amino acid sequence identities (10-40%) and the absence of conserved sequence motifs, the three-dimensional structures of these proteins are remarkably similar to one another. Their common polypeptide chain fold, encompassing a five-stranded antiparallel {beta}-sheet and five {alpha}-helices, proved to be quite unexpectedly similar to that of the RRM-type RNA-binding domain of the ribosomal L5 protein, which is responsible for binding the 5S- rRNA. Structure-based sequence alignments enabled construction of a phylogenetic tree relating UPF0201 family members to L5 ribosomal proteins and other structurally similar RNA binding proteins, thereby expanding our understanding of the evolutionary purview of the RRM superfamily. Analyses of the surfaces of these newly determined UPF0201 structures suggest that they probably do not function as RNA binding proteins, and that this domain specific family of proteins has acquired a novel function in archaebacteria, which awaits experimental elucidation.

  4. Fold-recognition and comparative modeling of human α2,3-sialyltransferases reveal their sequence and structural similarities to CstII from Campylobacter jejuni

    Balaji Petety V

    2006-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The 3-D structure of none of the eukaryotic sialyltransferases (SiaTs has been determined so far. Sequence alignment algorithms such as BLAST and PSI-BLAST could not detect a homolog of these enzymes from the protein databank. SiaTs, thus, belong to the hard/medium target category in the CASP experiments. The objective of the current work is to model the 3-D structures of human SiaTs which transfer the sialic acid in α2,3-linkage viz., ST3Gal I, II, III, IV, V, and VI, using fold-recognition and comparative modeling methods. The pair-wise sequence similarity among these six enzymes ranges from 41 to 63%. Results Unlike the sequence similarity servers, fold-recognition servers identified CstII, a α2,3/8 dual-activity SiaT from Campylobacter jejuni as the homolog of all the six ST3Gals; the level of sequence similarity between CstII and ST3Gals is only 15–20% and the similarity is restricted to well-characterized motif regions of ST3Gals. Deriving template-target sequence alignments for the entire ST3Gal sequence was not straightforward: the fold-recognition servers could not find a template for the region preceding the L-motif and that between the L- and S-motifs. Multiple structural templates were identified to model these regions and template identification-modeling-evaluation had to be performed iteratively to choose the most appropriate templates. The modeled structures have acceptable stereochemical properties and are also able to provide qualitative rationalizations for some of the site-directed mutagenesis results reported in literature. Apart from the predicted models, an unexpected but valuable finding from this study is the sequential and structural relatedness of family GT42 and family GT29 SiaTs. Conclusion The modeled 3-D structures can be used for docking and other modeling studies and for the rational identification of residues to be mutated to impart desired properties such as altered stability, substrate

  5. Extended local similarity analysis (eLSA) reveals unique associations between bacterial community structure and odor emission during pig carcasses decomposition.

    Ki, Bo-Min; Ryu, Hee Wook; Cho, Kyung-Suk

    2018-02-22

    Soil burial and composting methods have been widely used for the disposal of pig carcasses. The relationship between bacterial community structure and odor emission was examined using extended local similarity analysis (eLSA) during the degradation of pig carcasses in soil and compost. In soil, Hyphomicrobium, Niastella, Rhodanobacter, Polaromonas, Dokdonella and Mesorhizobium were associated with the emission of sulfur-containing odors such as hydrogen sulfide, methyl mercaptan and dimethyl disulfide. Sphingomonas, Rhodanobacter, Mesorhizobium, Dokdonella, Leucobacter and Truepera were associated with the emission of nitrogen-containing odors including ammonia and trimetylamine. In compost, however, Carnobacteriaceae, Lachnospiaceae and Clostridiales were highly correlated with the emission of sulfur-containing odors, while Rumincoccaceae was associated with the emission of nitrogen-containing odors. The emission of organic acids was closely related to Massilia, Sphaerobacter and Bradyrhizobiaceae in soil, but to Actinobacteria, Sporacetigenium, Micromonosporaceae and Solirubrobacteriales in compost. This study suggests that network analysis using eLSA is a useful strategy for exploring the mechanisms of odor emission during biodegradation of pig carcasses.

  6. Nuclear markers reveal that inter-lake cichlids' similar morphologies do not reflect similar genealogy.

    Kassam, Daud; Seki, Shingo; Horic, Michio; Yamaoka, Kosaku

    2006-08-01

    The apparent inter-lake morphological similarity among East African Great Lakes' cichlid species/genera has left evolutionary biologists asking whether such similarity is due to sharing of common ancestor or mere convergent evolution. In order to answer such question, we first used Geometric Morphometrics, GM, to quantify morphological similarity and then subsequently used Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphism, AFLP, to determine if similar morphologies imply shared ancestry or convergent evolution. GM revealed that not all presumed morphological similar pairs were indeed similar, and the dendrogram generated from AFLP data indicated distinct clusters corresponding to each lake and not inter-lake morphological similar pairs. Such results imply that the morphological similarity is due to convergent evolution and not shared ancestry. The congruency of GM and AFLP generated dendrograms imply that GM is capable of picking up phylogenetic signal, and thus GM can be potential tool in phylogenetic systematics.

  7. Protein structural similarity search by Ramachandran codes

    Chang Chih-Hung

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Protein structural data has increased exponentially, such that fast and accurate tools are necessary to access structure similarity search. To improve the search speed, several methods have been designed to reduce three-dimensional protein structures to one-dimensional text strings that are then analyzed by traditional sequence alignment methods; however, the accuracy is usually sacrificed and the speed is still unable to match sequence similarity search tools. Here, we aimed to improve the linear encoding methodology and develop efficient search tools that can rapidly retrieve structural homologs from large protein databases. Results We propose a new linear encoding method, SARST (Structural similarity search Aided by Ramachandran Sequential Transformation. SARST transforms protein structures into text strings through a Ramachandran map organized by nearest-neighbor clustering and uses a regenerative approach to produce substitution matrices. Then, classical sequence similarity search methods can be applied to the structural similarity search. Its accuracy is similar to Combinatorial Extension (CE and works over 243,000 times faster, searching 34,000 proteins in 0.34 sec with a 3.2-GHz CPU. SARST provides statistically meaningful expectation values to assess the retrieved information. It has been implemented into a web service and a stand-alone Java program that is able to run on many different platforms. Conclusion As a database search method, SARST can rapidly distinguish high from low similarities and efficiently retrieve homologous structures. It demonstrates that the easily accessible linear encoding methodology has the potential to serve as a foundation for efficient protein structural similarity search tools. These search tools are supposed applicable to automated and high-throughput functional annotations or predictions for the ever increasing number of published protein structures in this post-genomic era.

  8. Discovering Music Structure via Similarity Fusion

    for representing music structure is studied in a simplified scenario consisting of 4412 songs and two similarity measures among them. The results suggest that the PLSA model is a useful framework to combine different sources of information, and provides a reasonable space for song representation.......Automatic methods for music navigation and music recommendation exploit the structure in the music to carry out a meaningful exploration of the “song space”. To get a satisfactory performance from such systems, one should incorporate as much information about songs similarity as possible; however...... semantics”, in such a way that all observed similarities can be satisfactorily explained using the latent semantics. Therefore, one can think of these semantics as the real structure in music, in the sense that they can explain the observed similarities among songs. The suitability of the PLSA model...

  9. Discovering Music Structure via Similarity Fusion

    Arenas-García, Jerónimo; Parrado-Hernandez, Emilio; Meng, Anders

    Automatic methods for music navigation and music recommendation exploit the structure in the music to carry out a meaningful exploration of the “song space”. To get a satisfactory performance from such systems, one should incorporate as much information about songs similarity as possible; however...... semantics”, in such a way that all observed similarities can be satisfactorily explained using the latent semantics. Therefore, one can think of these semantics as the real structure in music, in the sense that they can explain the observed similarities among songs. The suitability of the PLSA model...... for representing music structure is studied in a simplified scenario consisting of 4412 songs and two similarity measures among them. The results suggest that the PLSA model is a useful framework to combine different sources of information, and provides a reasonable space for song representation....

  10. Structural similarity and category-specificity

    Gerlach, Christian; Law, Ian; Paulson, Olaf B

    2004-01-01

    It has been suggested that category-specific recognition disorders for natural objects may reflect that natural objects are more structurally (visually) similar than artefacts and therefore more difficult to recognize following brain damage. On this account one might expect a positive relationshi...

  11. Unveiling Music Structure Via PLSA Similarity Fusion

    Arenas-García, Jerónimo; Meng, Anders; Petersen, Kaare Brandt

    2007-01-01

    Nowadays there is an increasing interest in developing methods for building music recommendation systems. In order to get a satisfactory performance from such a system, one needs to incorporate as much information about songs similarity as possible; however, how to do so is not obvious. In this p......Nowadays there is an increasing interest in developing methods for building music recommendation systems. In order to get a satisfactory performance from such a system, one needs to incorporate as much information about songs similarity as possible; however, how to do so is not obvious...... observed similarities can be satisfactorily explained using the latent semantics. Additionally, this approach significantly simplifies the song retrieval phase, leading to a more practical system implementation. The suitability of the PLSA model for representing music structure is studied in a simplified...

  12. Measuring structural similarity in large online networks.

    Shi, Yongren; Macy, Michael

    2016-09-01

    Structural similarity based on bipartite graphs can be used to detect meaningful communities, but the networks have been tiny compared to massive online networks. Scalability is important in applications involving tens of millions of individuals with highly skewed degree distributions. Simulation analysis holding underlying similarity constant shows that two widely used measures - Jaccard index and cosine similarity - are biased by the distribution of out-degree in web-scale networks. However, an alternative measure, the Standardized Co-incident Ratio (SCR), is unbiased. We apply SCR to members of Congress, musical artists, and professional sports teams to show how massive co-following on Twitter can be used to map meaningful affiliations among cultural entities, even in the absence of direct connections to one another. Our results show how structural similarity can be used to map cultural alignments and demonstrate the potential usefulness of social media data in the study of culture, politics, and organizations across the social and behavioral sciences. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Protein structure similarity from principle component correlation analysis

    Chou James

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Owing to rapid expansion of protein structure databases in recent years, methods of structure comparison are becoming increasingly effective and important in revealing novel information on functional properties of proteins and their roles in the grand scheme of evolutionary biology. Currently, the structural similarity between two proteins is measured by the root-mean-square-deviation (RMSD in their best-superimposed atomic coordinates. RMSD is the golden rule of measuring structural similarity when the structures are nearly identical; it, however, fails to detect the higher order topological similarities in proteins evolved into different shapes. We propose new algorithms for extracting geometrical invariants of proteins that can be effectively used to identify homologous protein structures or topologies in order to quantify both close and remote structural similarities. Results We measure structural similarity between proteins by correlating the principle components of their secondary structure interaction matrix. In our approach, the Principle Component Correlation (PCC analysis, a symmetric interaction matrix for a protein structure is constructed with relationship parameters between secondary elements that can take the form of distance, orientation, or other relevant structural invariants. When using a distance-based construction in the presence or absence of encoded N to C terminal sense, there are strong correlations between the principle components of interaction matrices of structurally or topologically similar proteins. Conclusion The PCC method is extensively tested for protein structures that belong to the same topological class but are significantly different by RMSD measure. The PCC analysis can also differentiate proteins having similar shapes but different topological arrangements. Additionally, we demonstrate that when using two independently defined interaction matrices, comparison of their maximum

  14. Genetic similarity of soybean genotypes revealed by seed protein

    Nikolić Ana

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available More accurate and complete descriptions of genotypes could help determinate future breeding strategies and facilitate introgression of new genotypes in current soybean genetic pool. The objective of this study was to characterize 20 soybean genotypes from the Maize Research Institute "Zemun Polje" collection, which have good agronomic performances, high yield, lodging and drought resistance, and low shuttering by seed proteins as biochemical markers. Seed proteins were isolated and separated by PAA electrophoresis. On the basis of the presence/absence of protein fractions coefficients of similarity were calculated as Dice and Roger and Tanamoto coefficient between pairs of genotypes. The similarity matrix was submitted for hierarchical cluster analysis of un weighted pair group using arithmetic average (UPGMA method and necessary computation were performed using NTSYS-pc program. Protein seed analysis confirmed low level of genetic diversity in soybean. The highest genetic similarity was between genotypes P9272 and Kador. According to obtained results, soybean genotypes were assigned in two larger groups and coefficients of similarity showed similar results. Because of the lack of pedigree data for analyzed genotypes, correspondence with marker data could not be determined. In plant with a narrow genetic base in their gene pool, such as soybean, protein markers may not be sufficient for characterization and study of genetic diversity.

  15. Similarity Structure of Wave-Collapse

    Rypdal, Kristoffer; Juul Rasmussen, Jens; Thomsen, Kenneth

    1985-01-01

    Similarity transformations of the cubic Schrödinger equation (CSE) are investigated. The transformations are used to remove the explicit time variation in the CSE and reduce it to differential equations in the spatial variables only. Two different methods for similarity reduction are employed and...

  16. Representational Similarity Analysis Reveals Heterogeneous Networks Supporting Speech Motor Control

    Zheng, Zane; Cusack, Rhodri; Johnsrude, Ingrid

    The everyday act of speaking involves the complex processes of speech motor control. One important feature of such control is regulation of articulation when auditory concomitants of speech do not correspond to the intended motor gesture. While theoretical accounts of speech monitoring posit...... multiple functional components required for detection of errors in speech planning (e.g., Levelt, 1983), neuroimaging studies generally indicate either single brain regions sensitive to speech production errors, or small, discrete networks. Here we demonstrate that the complex system controlling speech...... is supported by a complex neural network that is involved in linguistic, motoric and sensory processing. With the aid of novel real-time acoustic analyses and representational similarity analyses of fMRI signals, our data show functionally differentiated networks underlying auditory feedback control of speech....

  17. Crystal structure of full-length Zika virus NS5 protein reveals a conformation similar to Japanese encephalitis virus NS5

    Upadhyay, Anup K.; Cyr, Matthew; Longenecker, Kenton; Tripathi, Rakesh; Sun, Chaohong; Kempf, Dale J. (AbbVie)

    2017-02-21

    The rapid spread of the recentZika virus(ZIKV) epidemic across various countries in the American continent poses a major health hazard for the unborn fetuses of pregnant women. To date, there is no effective medical intervention. The nonstructural protein 5 ofZika virus(ZIKV-NS5) is critical for ZIKV replication through the 5'-RNA capping and RNA polymerase activities present in its N-terminal methyltransferase (MTase) and C-terminal RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) domains, respectively. The crystal structure of the full-length ZIKV-NS5 protein has been determined at 3.05 Å resolution from a crystal belonging to space groupP21212 and containing two protein molecules in the asymmetric unit. The structure is similar to that reported for the NS5 protein fromJapanese encephalitis virusand suggests opportunities for structure-based drug design targeting either its MTase or RdRp domain.

  18. Self-similar structure in the distribution and density of the partition function zeros

    Huang, M.-C.; Luo, Y.-P.; Liaw, T.-M.

    2003-01-01

    Based on the knowledge of the partition function zeros for the cell-decorated triangular Ising model, we analyze the similar structures contained in the distribution pattern and density function of the zeros. The two own the same symmetries, and the arising of the similar structure in the road toward the infinite decoration-level is exhibited explicitly. The distinct features of the formation of the self-similar structure revealed from this model may be quite general

  19. Revelation of the Sun Self-Similarity Skeletal Structures

    Rantsev-Kartinov, V.A.

    2005-01-01

    The analysis of databases of photographic images of a surface of the Sun, its atmosphere and the closest its space environment taken at various spatial resolutions and for various types of radiation of a surface of the Sun by means of a method multilevel dynamic contrasting, has revealed presence skeletal structures as on the Sun directly such and in its environment. It is demonstrated the revealed a global structures of the Sun and powerful ejections of mass of its corona, as well as the structures of its atmosphere, protuberances, sun-spots and a globular structures of its photosphere

  20. Lipschitz equivalence of self-similar sets with touching structures

    Ruan, Huo-Jun; Wang, Yang; Xi, Li-Feng

    2014-01-01

    Lipschitz equivalence of self-similar sets is an important area in the study of fractal geometry. It is known that two dust-like self-similar sets with the same contraction ratios are always Lipschitz equivalent. However, when self-similar sets have touching structures the problem of Lipschitz equivalence becomes much more challenging and intriguing at the same time. So far, all the known results only cover self-similar sets in R with no more than three branches. In this study we establish results for the Lipschitz equivalence of self-similar sets with touching structures in R with arbitrarily many branches. Key to our study is the introduction of a geometric condition for self-similar sets called substitutable. (paper)

  1. GIS: a comprehensive source for protein structure similarities.

    Guerler, Aysam; Knapp, Ernst-Walter

    2010-07-01

    A web service for analysis of protein structures that are sequentially or non-sequentially similar was generated. Recently, the non-sequential structure alignment algorithm GANGSTA+ was introduced. GANGSTA+ can detect non-sequential structural analogs for proteins stated to possess novel folds. Since GANGSTA+ ignores the polypeptide chain connectivity of secondary structure elements (i.e. alpha-helices and beta-strands), it is able to detect structural similarities also between proteins whose sequences were reshuffled during evolution. GANGSTA+ was applied in an all-against-all comparison on the ASTRAL40 database (SCOP version 1.75), which consists of >10,000 protein domains yielding about 55 x 10(6) possible protein structure alignments. Here, we provide the resulting protein structure alignments as a public web-based service, named GANGSTA+ Internet Services (GIS). We also allow to browse the ASTRAL40 database of protein structures with GANGSTA+ relative to an externally given protein structure using different constraints to select specific results. GIS allows us to analyze protein structure families according to the SCOP classification scheme. Additionally, users can upload their own protein structures for pairwise protein structure comparison, alignment against all protein structures of the ASTRAL40 database (SCOP version 1.75) or symmetry analysis. GIS is publicly available at http://agknapp.chemie.fu-berlin.de/gplus.

  2. Multi-scale structural similarity index for motion detection

    M. Abdel-Salam Nasr

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The most recent approach for measuring the image quality is the structural similarity index (SSI. This paper presents a novel algorithm based on the multi-scale structural similarity index for motion detection (MS-SSIM in videos. The MS-SSIM approach is based on modeling of image luminance, contrast and structure at multiple scales. The MS-SSIM has resulted in much better performance than the single scale SSI approach but at the cost of relatively lower processing speed. The major advantages of the presented algorithm are both: the higher detection accuracy and the quasi real-time processing speed.

  3. A method for rapid similarity analysis of RNA secondary structures

    Liu Na

    2006-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Owing to the rapid expansion of RNA structure databases in recent years, efficient methods for structure comparison are in demand for function prediction and evolutionary analysis. Usually, the similarity of RNA secondary structures is evaluated based on tree models and dynamic programming algorithms. We present here a new method for the similarity analysis of RNA secondary structures. Results Three sets of real data have been used as input for the example applications. Set I includes the structures from 5S rRNAs. Set II includes the secondary structures from RNase P and RNase MRP. Set III includes the structures from 16S rRNAs. Reasonable phylogenetic trees are derived for these three sets of data by using our method. Moreover, our program runs faster as compared to some existing ones. Conclusion The famous Lempel-Ziv algorithm can efficiently extract the information on repeated patterns encoded in RNA secondary structures and makes our method an alternative to analyze the similarity of RNA secondary structures. This method will also be useful to researchers who are interested in evolutionary analysis.

  4. Musical structure analysis using similarity matrix and dynamic programming

    Shiu, Yu; Jeong, Hong; Kuo, C.-C. Jay

    2005-10-01

    Automatic music segmentation and structure analysis from audio waveforms based on a three-level hierarchy is examined in this research, where the three-level hierarchy includes notes, measures and parts. The pitch class profile (PCP) feature is first extracted at the note level. Then, a similarity matrix is constructed at the measure level, where a dynamic time warping (DTW) technique is used to enhance the similarity computation by taking the temporal distortion of similar audio segments into account. By processing the similarity matrix, we can obtain a coarse-grain music segmentation result. Finally, dynamic programming is applied to the coarse-grain segments so that a song can be decomposed into several major parts such as intro, verse, chorus, bridge and outro. The performance of the proposed music structure analysis system is demonstrated for pop and rock music.

  5. Examining Similarity Structure: Multidimensional Scaling and Related Approaches in Neuroimaging

    Svetlana V. Shinkareva

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper covers similarity analyses, a subset of multivariate pattern analysis techniques that are based on similarity spaces defined by multivariate patterns. These techniques offer several advantages and complement other methods for brain data analyses, as they allow for comparison of representational structure across individuals, brain regions, and data acquisition methods. Particular attention is paid to multidimensional scaling and related approaches that yield spatial representations or provide methods for characterizing individual differences. We highlight unique contributions of these methods by reviewing recent applications to functional magnetic resonance imaging data and emphasize areas of caution in applying and interpreting similarity analysis methods.

  6. The Similar Structures and Control Problems of Complex Systems

    2002-01-01

    In this paper, the naturally evolving complex systems, such as biotic and social ones, are considered. Focusing on their structures, a feature is noteworthy, i.e., the similarity in structures. The relations between the functions and behaviors of these systems and their similar structures will be studied. Owing to the management of social systems and the course of evolution of biotic systems may be regarded as control processes, the researches will be within the scope of control problems. Moreover, since it is difficult to model for biotic and social systems, it will start with the control problems of complex systems, possessing similar structures, in engineering.The obtained results show that for either linear or nonlinear systems and for a lot of control problemssimilar structures lead to a series of simplifications. In general, the original system may be decomposed into reduced amount of subsystems with lower dimensions and simpler structures. By virtue of such subsystems, the control problems of original system can be solved more simply.At last, it turns round to observe the biotic and social systems and some analyses are given.

  7. Strategic Planning Process and Organizational Structure: Impacts, Confluence and Similarities

    Dyogo Felype Neis

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available This article aims to analyze the relationship between the strategic planning process and organizational structure in the reality of a complex organization: the Public Prosecutor’s Office of Santa Catarina (MPSC. The research is set by the single case study research strategy and data were collected through the following instruments: bibliographical research, documentary research, semi-structured interviews and systematic observation. The conclusion indicates that the phases of the strategic planning process influence and are influenced by the elements of the organizational structure and highlights the confluences, the impacts and similarities between the stages of formulation and implementation of the strategic process with the various constituent elements of the organizational structure.

  8. Structural similarity image quality reliability: Determining parameters and window size

    Silvestre-Blanes, Javier

    2011-01-01

    The need to obtain objective values of the quality of distorted images with respect to the original is fundamental in multimedia and image processing applications. It is generally required that this value correlates well with the human vision system (HVS). In spite of the properties and the general use of the mean square error (MSE) measurement, this has a poor correlation with HSV, which has led to the development of methods such as structural similarity (SSIM). This metric improves the corr...

  9. APPLICABILITY OF SIMILARITY CONDITIONS TO ANALOGUE MODELLING OF TECTONIC STRUCTURES

    Mikhail A. Goncharov

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available The publication is aimed at comparing concepts of V.V. Belousov and M.V. Gzovsky, outstanding researchers who established fundamentals of tectonophysics in Russia, specifically similarity conditions in application to tectonophysical modeling. Quotations from their publications illustrate differences in their views. In this respect, we can reckon V.V. Belousov as a «realist» as he supported «the liberal point of view» [Methods of modelling…, 1988, p. 21–22], whereas M.V. Gzovsky can be regarded as an «idealist» as he believed that similarity conditions should be mandatorily applied to ensure correctness of physical modeling of tectonic deformations and structures [Gzovsky, 1975, pp. 88 and 94].Objectives of the present publication are (1 to be another reminder about desirability of compliance with similarity conditions in experimental tectonics; (2 to point out difficulties in ensuring such compliance; (3 to give examples which bring out the fact that similarity conditions are often met per se, i.e. automatically observed; (4 to show that modeling can be simplified in some cases without compromising quantitative estimations of parameters of structure formation.(1 Physical modelling of tectonic deformations and structures should be conducted, if possible, in compliance with conditions of geometric and physical similarity between experimental models and corresponding natural objects. In any case, a researcher should have a clear vision of conditions applicable to each particular experiment.(2 Application of similarity conditions is often challenging due to unavoidable difficulties caused by the following: a Imperfection of experimental equipment and technologies (Fig. 1 to 3; b uncertainties in estimating parameters of formation of natural structures, including main ones: structure size (Fig. 4, time of formation (Fig. 5, deformation properties of the medium wherein such structures are formed, including, first of all, viscosity (Fig. 6

  10. Structural similarities between prokaryotic and eukaryotic 5S ribosomal RNAs

    Welfle, H.; Boehm, S.; Damaschun, G.; Fabian, H.; Gast, K.; Misselwitz, R.; Mueller, J.J.; Zirwer, D.; Filimonov, V.V.; Venyaminov, S.Yu.; Zalkova, T.N.

    1986-01-01

    5S RNAs from rat liver and E. coli have been studied by diffuse X-ray and dynamic light scattering and by infrared and Raman spectroscopy. Identical structures at a resolution of 1 nm can be deduced from the comparison of the experimental X-ray scattering curves and electron distance distribution functions and from the agreement of the shape parameters. A flat shape model with a compact central region and two protruding arms was derived. Double helical stems are eleven-fold helices with a mean base pair distance of 0.28 nm. The number of base pairs (26 GC, 9 AU for E. coli; 27 GC, 9 AU for rat liver) and the degree of base stacking are the same within the experimental error. A very high regularity in the ribophosphate backbone is indicated for both 5S RNAs. The observed structural similarity and the consensus secondary structure pattern derived from comparative sequence analyses suggest the conclusion that prokaryotic and eukaryotic 5S RNAs are in general very similar with respect to their fundamental structural features. (author)

  11. Monitoring engineering structures by the comparison of similar photographs

    Jones, A.

    1976-12-01

    A commonly used method of monitoring engineering structures is to compare similar photographs taken at different times. The initial part of this note deals with commercially available equipment, known as a comparascope, which enables differences between photographs to be rapidly (and reliably) detected. A series of practical tests is described in which it is established that a change in dimensions of 0.05mm can be detected between photographs. For typical camera systems, this will usually correspond to detectable displacements of the order of several mm in object space. Perhaps the most serious disadvantages of the technique is that alterations in camera attitude between photographs can cause changes in the recorded image which mask genuine movements in the structure. The changes caused by a given shift in camera attitude are, therefore, investigated theoretically. Since it is desirable that the changes are small enough to go undetected in the comparison, the established detection limit of the comparascope is included in the investigation to specify how accurately the camera attitude must be controlled for a given set of experimental circumstances. As a result, it appears that a special purpose camera mounting will nearly always be required if structural differences as small as several mm are to be reliably detected. Hand-held cameras should only be used for relatively coarse monitoring tasks. (author)

  12. A little similarity goes a long way: the effects of peripheral but self-revealing similarities on improving and sustaining interracial relationships.

    West, Tessa V; Magee, Joe C; Gordon, Sarah H; Gullett, Lindy

    2014-07-01

    Integrating theory on close relationships and intergroup relations, we construct a manipulation of similarity that we demonstrate can improve interracial interactions across different settings. We find that manipulating perceptions of similarity on self-revealing attributes that are peripheral to the interaction improves interactions in cross-race dyads and racially diverse task groups. In a getting-acquainted context, we demonstrate that the belief that one's different-race partner is similar to oneself on self-revealing, peripheral attributes leads to less anticipatory anxiety than the belief that one's partner is similar on peripheral, nonself-revealing attributes. In another dyadic context, we explore the range of benefits that perceptions of peripheral, self-revealing similarity can bring to different-race interaction partners and find (a) less anxiety during interaction, (b) greater interest in sustained contact with one's partner, and (c) stronger accuracy in perceptions of one's partners' relationship intentions. By contrast, participants in same-race interactions were largely unaffected by these manipulations of perceived similarity. Our final experiment shows that among small task groups composed of racially diverse individuals, those whose members perceive peripheral, self-revealing similarity perform superior to those who perceive dissimilarity. Implications for using this approach to improve interracial interactions across different goal-driven contexts are discussed.

  13. Structures of Astromaterials Revealed by EBSD

    Zolensky, M.

    2018-01-01

    Groups at the Johnson Space Center and the University of Tokyo have been using electron back-scattered diffraction (EBSD) to reveal the crystal structures of extraterrestrial minerals for many years. Even though we also routinely use transmission electron microscopy, synchrotron X-ray diffraction (SXRD), and conventional electron diffraction, we find that EBSD is the most powerful technique for crystal structure elucidation in many instances. In this talk I describe a few of the cases where we have found EBSD to provide crucial, unique information. See attachment.

  14. Analysis of newly established EST databases reveals similarities between heart regeneration in newt and fish

    Weis Patrick

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The newt Notophthalmus viridescens possesses the remarkable ability to respond to cardiac damage by formation of new myocardial tissue. Surprisingly little is known about changes in gene activities that occur during the course of regeneration. To begin to decipher the molecular processes, that underlie restoration of functional cardiac tissue, we generated an EST database from regenerating newt hearts and compared the transcriptional profile of selected candidates with genes deregulated during zebrafish heart regeneration. Results A cDNA library of 100,000 cDNA clones was generated from newt hearts 14 days after ventricular injury. Sequencing of 11520 cDNA clones resulted in 2894 assembled contigs. BLAST searches revealed 1695 sequences with potential homology to sequences from the NCBI database. BLAST searches to TrEMBL and Swiss-Prot databases assigned 1116 proteins to Gene Ontology terms. We also identified a relatively large set of 174 ORFs, which are likely to be unique for urodele amphibians. Expression analysis of newt-zebrafish homologues confirmed the deregulation of selected genes during heart regeneration. Sequences, BLAST results and GO annotations were visualized in a relational web based database followed by grouping of identified proteins into clusters of GO Terms. Comparison of data from regenerating zebrafish hearts identified biological processes, which were uniformly overrepresented during cardiac regeneration in newt and zebrafish. Conclusion We concluded that heart regeneration in newts and zebrafish led to the activation of similar sets of genes, which suggests that heart regeneration in both species might follow similar principles. The design of the newly established newt EST database allows identification of molecular pathways important for heart regeneration.

  15. Common neighbour structure and similarity intensity in complex networks

    Hou, Lei; Liu, Kecheng

    2017-10-01

    Complex systems as networks always exhibit strong regularities, implying underlying mechanisms governing their evolution. In addition to the degree preference, the similarity has been argued to be another driver for networks. Assuming a network is randomly organised without similarity preference, the present paper studies the expected number of common neighbours between vertices. A symmetrical similarity index is accordingly developed by removing such expected number from the observed common neighbours. The developed index can not only describe the similarities between vertices, but also the dissimilarities. We further apply the proposed index to measure of the influence of similarity on the wring patterns of networks. Fifteen empirical networks as well as artificial networks are examined in terms of similarity intensity and degree heterogeneity. Results on real networks indicate that, social networks are strongly governed by the similarity as well as the degree preference, while the biological networks and infrastructure networks show no apparent similarity governance. Particularly, classical network models, such as the Barabási-Albert model, the Erdös-Rényi model and the Ring Lattice, cannot well describe the social networks in terms of the degree heterogeneity and similarity intensity. The findings may shed some light on the modelling and link prediction of different classes of networks.

  16. Metagenomic analysis reveals that modern microbialites and polar microbial mats have similar taxonomic and functional potential

    Richard Allen White III

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Within the subarctic climate of Clinton Creek, Yukon, Canada, lies an abandoned and flooded open-pit asbestos mine that harbors rapidly growing microbialites. To understand their formation we completed a metagenomic community profile of the microbialites and their surrounding sediments. Assembled metagenomic data revealed that bacteria within the phylum Proteobacteria numerically dominated this system, although the relative abundances of taxa within the phylum varied among environments. Bacteria belonging to Alphaproteobacteria and Gammaproteobacteria were dominant in the microbialites and sediments, respectively. The microbialites were also home to many other groups associated with microbialite formation including filamentous cyanobacteria and dissimilatory sulfate-reducing Deltaproteobacteria, consistent with the idea of a shared global microbialite microbiome. Other members were present that are typically not associated with microbialites including Gemmatimonadetes and iron-oxidizing Betaproteobacteria, which participate in carbon metabolism and iron cycling. Compared to the sediments, the microbialite microbiome has significantly more genes associated with photosynthetic processes (e.g., photosystem II reaction centers, carotenoid and chlorophyll biosynthesis and carbon fixation (e.g., CO dehydrogenase. The Clinton Creek microbialite communities had strikingly similar functional potentials to non-lithifying microbial mats from the Canadian High Arctic and Antarctica, but are functionally distinct, from non-lithifying mats or biofilms from Yellowstone. Clinton Creek microbialites also share metabolic genes (R2 0.900. These metagenomic profiles from an anthropogenic microbialite-forming ecosystem provide context to microbialite formation on a human-relevant timescale.

  17. Large revealing similarity in multihadron production in nuclear and particle collisions

    Mishra, Aditya Nath; Sahoo, Raghunath; Sarkisyan, Edward K.G.; Sakharov, Alexander S.; )

    2016-01-01

    The dependencies of charged particle pseudorapidity density and transverse energy pseudorapidity density at midrapidity as well as of charged particle total multiplicity on the collision energy and on the number of nucleon participants, or centrality, measured in nucleus-nucleus collisions are studied in the energy range spanning a few GeV to a few TeV per nucleon. The model in which the multiparticle production is driven by the dissipating effective energy of participants is considered. The model extends the earlier proposed approach, combining the constituent quark picture together with Landau relativistic hydrodynamics shown to interrelate the measurements from different types of collisions. Within this model, the dependence of the charged particle pseudorapidity density and transverse energy pseudorapidity density at midrapidity on the number of participants in heavy-ion collisions are found to be well described in terms of the effective energy defined as a centrality-dependent fraction of the collision energy. For both variables the effective energy approach reveals a similarity in the energy dependence obtained for the most central collisions and centrality data in the entire available energy range

  18. Unexpected functional similarities between gatekeeper tumour suppressor genes and proto-oncogenes revealed by systems biology.

    Zhao, Yongzhong; Epstein, Richard J

    2011-05-01

    Familial tumor suppressor genes comprise two subgroups: caretaker genes (CTs) that repair DNA, and gatekeeper genes (GKs) that trigger cell death. Since GKs may also induce cell cycle delay and thus enhance cell survival by facilitating DNA repair, we hypothesized that the prosurvival phenotype of GKs could be selected during cancer progression, and we used a multivariable systems biology approach to test this. We performed multidimensional data analysis, non-negative matrix factorization and logistic regression to compare the features of GKs with those of their putative antagonists, the proto-oncogenes (POs), as well as with control groups of CTs and functionally unrelated congenital heart disease genes (HDs). GKs and POs closely resemble each other, but not CTs or HDs, in terms of gene structure (Pexpression level and breadth (Pimplied suggest a common functional attribute that is strongly negatively selected-that is, a shared phenotype that enhances cell survival. The counterintuitive finding of similar evolutionary pressures affecting GKs and POs raises an intriguing possibility: namely, that cancer microevolution is accelerated by an epistatic cascade in which upstream suppressor gene defects subvert the normal bifunctionality of wild-type GKs by constitutively shifting the phenotype away from apoptosis towards survival. If correct, this interpretation would explain the hitherto unexplained phenomenon of frequent wild-type GK (for example, p53) overexpression in tumors.

  19. Exploiting structure similarity in refinement: automated NCS and target-structure restraints in BUSTER

    Smart, Oliver S., E-mail: osmart@globalphasing.com; Womack, Thomas O.; Flensburg, Claus; Keller, Peter; Paciorek, Włodek; Sharff, Andrew; Vonrhein, Clemens; Bricogne, Gérard [Global Phasing Ltd, Sheraton House, Castle Park, Cambridge CB3 0AX (United Kingdom)

    2012-04-01

    Local structural similarity restraints (LSSR) provide a novel method for exploiting NCS or structural similarity to an external target structure. Two examples are given where BUSTER re-refinement of PDB entries with LSSR produces marked improvements, enabling further structural features to be modelled. Maximum-likelihood X-ray macromolecular structure refinement in BUSTER has been extended with restraints facilitating the exploitation of structural similarity. The similarity can be between two or more chains within the structure being refined, thus favouring NCS, or to a distinct ‘target’ structure that remains fixed during refinement. The local structural similarity restraints (LSSR) approach considers all distances less than 5.5 Å between pairs of atoms in the chain to be restrained. For each, the difference from the distance between the corresponding atoms in the related chain is found. LSSR applies a restraint penalty on each difference. A functional form that reaches a plateau for large differences is used to avoid the restraints distorting parts of the structure that are not similar. Because LSSR are local, there is no need to separate out domains. Some restraint pruning is still necessary, but this has been automated. LSSR have been available to academic users of BUSTER since 2009 with the easy-to-use -autoncs and @@target target.pdb options. The use of LSSR is illustrated in the re-refinement of PDB entries http://scripts.iucr.org/cgi-bin/cr.cgi?rm, where -target enables the correct ligand-binding structure to be found, and http://scripts.iucr.org/cgi-bin/cr.cgi?rm, where -autoncs contributes to the location of an additional copy of the cyclic peptide ligand.

  20. COMPACT STARBURSTS IN z similar to 3-6 SUBMILLIMETER GALAXIES REVEALED BY ALMA

    Ikarashi, Soh; Ivison, R. J.; Caputi, Karina I.; Aretxaga, Itziar; Dunlop, James S.; Hatsukade, Bunyo; Hughes, David H.; Iono, Daisuke; Izumi, Takuma; Kawabe, Ryohei; Kohno, Kotaro; Lagos, Claudia D. P.; Motohara, Kentaro; Nakanishi, Kouichiro; Ohta, Kouji; Tamura, Yoichi; Umehata, Hideki; Wilson, Grant W.; Yabe, Kiyoto; Yun, Min S.

    2015-01-01

    We report the source size distribution, as measured by ALMA millimetric continuum imaging, of a sample of 13 AzTEC-selected submillimeter galaxies (SMGs) at z(phot) similar to 3-6. Their infrared luminosities and star formation rates (SFRs) are L-IR similar to, 2-6 x 10(12) L-circle dot and similar

  1. Assessment of Vegetation Structural Diversity and Similarity Index of ...

    Data were analysed using descriptive statistics, relative density, diversity and similarity indices. The result showed that the forest reserve has one hundred and ninety species of plants belonging to sixty three families. The dominant plant families recorded in the forest are Leguminosae (12.63%), Rubiaceae (8.42%), ...

  2. HIV and influenza share a similar structural blueprint

    HIV uses a protein called the envelope glycoprotein spike to attach itself and fuse with the cell membrane; NCI scientists have now defined the structure of this spike in its pre-fusion state using cryo-electron microscopy

  3. Structural similarities in DNA packaging and delivery apparatuses in Herpesvirus and dsDNA bacteriophages.

    Rixon, Frazer J; Schmid, Michael F

    2014-04-01

    Structural information can inform our understanding of virus origins and evolution. The herpesviruses and tailed bacteriophages constitute two large families of dsDNA viruses which infect vertebrates and prokaryotes respectively. A relationship between these disparate groups was initially suggested by similarities in their capsid assembly and DNA packaging strategies. This relationship has now been confirmed by a range of studies that have revealed common structural features in their capsid proteins, and similar organizations and sequence conservation in their DNA packaging machinery and maturational proteases. This concentration of conserved traits in proteins involved in essential and primordial capsid/packaging functions is evidence that these structures are derived from an ancient, common ancestor and is in sharp contrast to the lack of such evidence for other virus functions. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  4. Structural covariance of brain region volumes is associated with both structural connectivity and transcriptomic similarity.

    Yee, Yohan; Fernandes, Darren J; French, Leon; Ellegood, Jacob; Cahill, Lindsay S; Vousden, Dulcie A; Spencer Noakes, Leigh; Scholz, Jan; van Eede, Matthijs C; Nieman, Brian J; Sled, John G; Lerch, Jason P

    2018-05-18

    An organizational pattern seen in the brain, termed structural covariance, is the statistical association of pairs of brain regions in their anatomical properties. These associations, measured across a population as covariances or correlations usually in cortical thickness or volume, are thought to reflect genetic and environmental underpinnings. Here, we examine the biological basis of structural volume covariance in the mouse brain. We first examined large scale associations between brain region volumes using an atlas-based approach that parcellated the entire mouse brain into 318 regions over which correlations in volume were assessed, for volumes obtained from 153 mouse brain images via high-resolution MRI. We then used a seed-based approach and determined, for 108 different seed regions across the brain and using mouse gene expression and connectivity data from the Allen Institute for Brain Science, the variation in structural covariance data that could be explained by distance to seed, transcriptomic similarity to seed, and connectivity to seed. We found that overall, correlations in structure volumes hierarchically clustered into distinct anatomical systems, similar to findings from other studies and similar to other types of networks in the brain, including structural connectivity and transcriptomic similarity networks. Across seeds, this structural covariance was significantly explained by distance (17% of the variation, up to a maximum of 49% for structural covariance to the visceral area of the cortex), transcriptomic similarity (13% of the variation, up to maximum of 28% for structural covariance to the primary visual area) and connectivity (15% of the variation, up to a maximum of 36% for structural covariance to the intermediate reticular nucleus in the medulla) of covarying structures. Together, distance, connectivity, and transcriptomic similarity explained 37% of structural covariance, up to a maximum of 63% for structural covariance to the

  5. Unsupervised Word Mapping Using Structural Similarities in Monolingual Embeddings

    Aldarmaki, Hanan; Mohan, Mahesh; Diab, Mona

    2017-01-01

    Most existing methods for automatic bilingual dictionary induction rely on prior alignments between the source and target languages, such as parallel corpora or seed dictionaries. For many language pairs, such supervised alignments are not readily available. We propose an unsupervised approach for learning a bilingual dictionary for a pair of languages given their independently-learned monolingual word embeddings. The proposed method exploits local and global structures in monolingual vector ...

  6. Structure of the clinical and geriatric depression: Similarities and differences

    Novović Zdenka

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Studies demonstrating the uniqueness of depression in old age are numerous, but conclusions on the fact if the problems of the elderly people cause depression or if they are a part of depression are not unique. The aim of this paper is to compare the structure of depression of old people without the history of mental illness and middle-aged people treated for depression. The sample consists of 82 healthy inmates of different Homes for the Aged and 78 patients diagnosed with some sort of affective disorder. A depression has been assessed with the shorten version of the MMPI D-scale. The structure of the geriatric and clinical depression has been compared with the method of maximum likelihood, over the matrix of co-variances of answers on the items on the depression scale. The results point out to the statistically significant difference in the structure of depression of the old and clinically depressed individuals. However, half of the items of the D-scale have significant loadings on the factor of depression in both groups. The essence of the depression in both samples is made of cognitive subject matters, depressive affect, decline of motivation and a negative estimate of one's basic abilities. Symptoms concerning low self-esteem, experiencing cognitive deficit, energy and impaired physical health have been significant in describing the clinical depression, while a feeling of reduced positive stimulation and the affective liability is typical for the depression of geriatric sample. The conclusion is that, despite the differences, there is a common core of symptoms that makes the essence of depression, apart from the samples.

  7. Synthesis of resorcinolic lipids bearing structural similarities to cytosporone A

    Santos, Edson dos Anjos dos; Beatriz, Adilson; Lima, Denis Pires de; Marques, Maria Rita; Leite, Carla Braga

    2009-01-01

    Inspired by the structure and biological activities of resorcinolic lipids and, particularly cytosporone A- a potent inhibitor of plantule germination and growth, we have performed the synthesis of the analogs 3-heptyl-3-hydroxy-5,7-dimethoxy-2-benzofuran-1(3H)-one (1) and 3-heptyl-3-hydroxy-4,6-dimethoxy-2-benzofuran-1(3H)-one (2). The intermediates and products were submitted to allelopathic test using Lactuca sativa L. seeds. Target compound 1 showed an inhibitory effect on germination and growth of hypocotyl and radicle in millimolar range. (author)

  8. Synthesis of resorcinolic lipids bearing structural similarities to cytosporone A

    Santos, Edson dos Anjos dos; Beatriz, Adilson; Lima, Denis Pires de [Universidade Federal Mato Grosso do Sul (UFMS), Campo Grande, MS (Brazil). Centro de Ciencias Exatas e Tecnologia. Dept. de Quimica], e-mail: dlima@nin.ufms.br; Marques, Maria Rita; Leite, Carla Braga [Universidade Federal Mato Grosso do Sul (UFMS), Campo Grande, MS (Brazil). Centro de Ciencias Biologicas. Dept. de Morfofisiologia

    2009-07-01

    Inspired by the structure and biological activities of resorcinolic lipids and, particularly cytosporone A- a potent inhibitor of plantule germination and growth, we have performed the synthesis of the analogs 3-heptyl-3-hydroxy-5,7-dimethoxy-2-benzofuran-1(3H)-one (1) and 3-heptyl-3-hydroxy-4,6-dimethoxy-2-benzofuran-1(3H)-one (2). The intermediates and products were submitted to allelopathic test using Lactuca sativa L. seeds. Target compound 1 showed an inhibitory effect on germination and growth of hypocotyl and radicle in millimolar range. (author)

  9. Synthesis of resorcinolic lipids bearing structural similarities to cytosporone A

    Edson dos Anjos dos Santos

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Inspired by the structure and biological activities of resorcinolic lipids and, particularly cytosporone A- a potent inhibitor of plantule germination and growth, we have performed the synthesis of the analogs 3-heptyl-3-hydroxy-5,7-dimethoxy-2-benzofuran-1(3H-one (1 and 3-heptyl-3-hydroxy-4,6-dimethoxy-2-benzofuran-1(3H-one (2. The intermediates and products were submitted to allelopathic test using Lactuca sativa L. seeds. Target compound 1 showed an inhibitory effect on germination and growth of hypocotyl and radicle in milimolar range.

  10. Zooplankton structure in two interconnected ponds: similarities and differences

    Špoljar Maria

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The research of zooplankton diversity, abundance and trophic structure was conducted during the summer period in pelagial zone on the longitudinal profile of the Sutla River Backwater. Investigated site consists of two interconnected basins: transparent Upper Basin with submerged macrophytes and turbid Lower Basin without macrophytes in the littoral zone. In the Upper Basin, abundance and diversity of zooplankton in the pelagial was higher in comparison to the Lower Basin, with prevailing species of genus Keratella as microfilter-feeder, and genera of Polyartha and Trihocerca as macrofilter-feeder rotifers. On the contrary, in the Lower Basin, crustaceans dominated in abundance. Microfilter-feeder cladoceran (Bosmina longirostris and larval and adult stages of macrofilter-feeder copepod (Macrocyclops albidus prevailed in the Lower Basin. Fish predation pressure was more pronounced in the pelagial of the Upper Basin, indicated by low cladoceran abundance in the surface layer. Although the studied basins were interconnected, results indicate significant (Mann-Whitney U test, p < 0.05 differences in the zooplankton structure as a potential result of the macrophyte impact on environmental conditions and fish predation pressure.

  11. Quality assessment of protein model-structures based on structural and functional similarities.

    Konopka, Bogumil M; Nebel, Jean-Christophe; Kotulska, Malgorzata

    2012-09-21

    Experimental determination of protein 3D structures is expensive, time consuming and sometimes impossible. A gap between number of protein structures deposited in the World Wide Protein Data Bank and the number of sequenced proteins constantly broadens. Computational modeling is deemed to be one of the ways to deal with the problem. Although protein 3D structure prediction is a difficult task, many tools are available. These tools can model it from a sequence or partial structural information, e.g. contact maps. Consequently, biologists have the ability to generate automatically a putative 3D structure model of any protein. However, the main issue becomes evaluation of the model quality, which is one of the most important challenges of structural biology. GOBA--Gene Ontology-Based Assessment is a novel Protein Model Quality Assessment Program. It estimates the compatibility between a model-structure and its expected function. GOBA is based on the assumption that a high quality model is expected to be structurally similar to proteins functionally similar to the prediction target. Whereas DALI is used to measure structure similarity, protein functional similarity is quantified using standardized and hierarchical description of proteins provided by Gene Ontology combined with Wang's algorithm for calculating semantic similarity. Two approaches are proposed to express the quality of protein model-structures. One is a single model quality assessment method, the other is its modification, which provides a relative measure of model quality. Exhaustive evaluation is performed on data sets of model-structures submitted to the CASP8 and CASP9 contests. The validation shows that the method is able to discriminate between good and bad model-structures. The best of tested GOBA scores achieved 0.74 and 0.8 as a mean Pearson correlation to the observed quality of models in our CASP8 and CASP9-based validation sets. GOBA also obtained the best result for two targets of CASP8, and

  12. Sensitivity of human auditory cortex to rapid frequency modulation revealed by multivariate representational similarity analysis.

    Joanisse, Marc F; DeSouza, Diedre D

    2014-01-01

    Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) was used to investigate the extent, magnitude, and pattern of brain activity in response to rapid frequency-modulated sounds. We examined this by manipulating the direction (rise vs. fall) and the rate (fast vs. slow) of the apparent pitch of iterated rippled noise (IRN) bursts. Acoustic parameters were selected to capture features used in phoneme contrasts, however the stimuli themselves were not perceived as speech per se. Participants were scanned as they passively listened to sounds in an event-related paradigm. Univariate analyses revealed a greater level and extent of activation in bilateral auditory cortex in response to frequency-modulated sweeps compared to steady-state sounds. This effect was stronger in the left hemisphere. However, no regions showed selectivity for either rate or direction of frequency modulation. In contrast, multivoxel pattern analysis (MVPA) revealed feature-specific encoding for direction of modulation in auditory cortex bilaterally. Moreover, this effect was strongest when analyses were restricted to anatomical regions lying outside Heschl's gyrus. We found no support for feature-specific encoding of frequency modulation rate. Differential findings of modulation rate and direction of modulation are discussed with respect to their relevance to phonetic discrimination.

  13. Single nucleus genome sequencing reveals high similarity among nuclei of an endomycorrhizal fungus.

    Kui Lin

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Nuclei of arbuscular endomycorrhizal fungi have been described as highly diverse due to their asexual nature and absence of a single cell stage with only one nucleus. This has raised fundamental questions concerning speciation, selection and transmission of the genetic make-up to next generations. Although this concept has become textbook knowledge, it is only based on studying a few loci, including 45S rDNA. To provide a more comprehensive insight into the genetic makeup of arbuscular endomycorrhizal fungi, we applied de novo genome sequencing of individual nuclei of Rhizophagus irregularis. This revealed a surprisingly low level of polymorphism between nuclei. In contrast, within a nucleus, the 45S rDNA repeat unit turned out to be highly diverged. This finding demystifies a long-lasting hypothesis on the complex genetic makeup of arbuscular endomycorrhizal fungi. Subsequent genome assembly resulted in the first draft reference genome sequence of an arbuscular endomycorrhizal fungus. Its length is 141 Mbps, representing over 27,000 protein-coding gene models. We used the genomic sequence to reinvestigate the phylogenetic relationships of Rhizophagus irregularis with other fungal phyla. This unambiguously demonstrated that Glomeromycota are more closely related to Mucoromycotina than to its postulated sister Dikarya.

  14. Molecular and Cellular Profiling of Scalp Psoriasis Reveals Differences and Similarities Compared to Skin Psoriasis

    Ruano, Juan; Suárez-Fariñas, Mayte; Shemer, Avner; Oliva, Margeaux

    2016-01-01

    Scalp psoriasis shows a variable clinical spectrum and in many cases poses a great therapeutic challenge. However, it remains unknown whether the immune response of scalp psoriasis differs from understood pathomechanisms of psoriasis in other skin areas. We sought to determine the cellular and molecular phenotype of scalp psoriasis by performing a comparative analysis of scalp and skin using lesional and nonlesional samples from 20 Caucasian subjects with untreated moderate to severe psoriasis and significant scalp involvement and 10 control subjects without psoriasis. Our results suggest that even in the scalp, psoriasis is a disease of the inter-follicular skin. The immune mechanisms that mediate scalp psoriasis were found to be similar to those involved in skin psoriasis. However, the magnitude of dysregulation, number of differentially expressed genes, and enrichment of the psoriatic genomic fingerprint were more prominent in skin lesions. Furthermore, the scalp transcriptome showed increased modulation of several gene-sets, particularly those induced by interferon-gamma, compared with that of skin psoriasis, which was mainly associated with activation of TNFα/L-17/IL-22-induced keratinocyte response genes. We also detected differences in expression of gene-sets involving negative regulation, epigenetic regulation, epidermal differentiation, and dendritic cell or Th1/Th17/Th22-related T-cell processes. PMID:26849645

  15. Arabidopsis female gametophyte gene expression map reveals similarities between plant and animal gametes.

    Wuest, Samuel E; Vijverberg, Kitty; Schmidt, Anja; Weiss, Manuel; Gheyselinck, Jacqueline; Lohr, Miriam; Wellmer, Frank; Rahnenführer, Jörg; von Mering, Christian; Grossniklaus, Ueli

    2010-03-23

    The development of multicellular organisms is controlled by differential gene expression whereby cells adopt distinct fates. A spatially resolved view of gene expression allows the elucidation of transcriptional networks that are linked to cellular identity and function. The haploid female gametophyte of flowering plants is a highly reduced organism: at maturity, it often consists of as few as three cell types derived from a common precursor [1, 2]. However, because of its inaccessibility and small size, we know little about the molecular basis of cell specification and differentiation in the female gametophyte. Here we report expression profiles of all cell types in the mature Arabidopsis female gametophyte. Differentially expressed posttranscriptional regulatory modules and metabolic pathways characterize the distinct cell types. Several transcription factor families are overrepresented in the female gametophyte in comparison to other plant tissues, e.g., type I MADS domain, RWP-RK, and reproductive meristem transcription factors. PAZ/Piwi-domain encoding genes are upregulated in the egg, indicating a role of epigenetic regulation through small RNA pathways-a feature paralleled in the germline of animals [3]. A comparison of human and Arabidopsis egg cells for enrichment of functional groups identified several similarities that may represent a consequence of coevolution or ancestral gametic features. 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Comparative transcriptomic analysis reveals similarities and dissimilarities in Saccharomyces cerevisiae wine strains response to nitrogen availability.

    Catarina Barbosa

    Full Text Available Nitrogen levels in grape-juices are of major importance in winemaking ensuring adequate yeast growth and fermentation performance. Here we used a comparative transcriptome analysis to uncover wine yeasts responses to nitrogen availability during fermentation. Gene expression was assessed in three genetically and phenotypically divergent commercial wine strains (CEG, VL1 and QA23, under low (67 mg/L and high nitrogen (670 mg/L regimes, at three time points during fermentation (12 h, 24 h and 96 h. Two-way ANOVA analysis of each fermentation condition led to the identification of genes whose expression was dependent on strain, fermentation stage and on the interaction of both factors. The high fermenter yeast strain QA23 was more clearly distinct from the other two strains, by differential expression of genes involved in flocculation, mitochondrial functions, energy generation and protein folding and stabilization. For all strains, higher transcriptional variability due to fermentation stage was seen in the high nitrogen fermentations. A positive correlation between maximum fermentation rate and the expression of genes involved in stress response was observed. The finding of common genes correlated with both fermentation activity and nitrogen up-take underlies the role of nitrogen on yeast fermentative fitness. The comparative analysis of genes differentially expressed between both fermentation conditions at 12 h, where the main difference was the level of nitrogen available, showed the highest variability amongst strains revealing strain-specific responses. Nevertheless, we were able to identify a small set of genes whose expression profiles can quantitatively assess the common response of the yeast strains to varying nitrogen conditions. The use of three contrasting yeast strains in gene expression analysis prompts the identification of more reliable, accurate and reproducible biomarkers that will facilitate the diagnosis of deficiency of this

  17. Comparative Transcriptomic Analysis Reveals Similarities and Dissimilarities in Saccharomyces cerevisiae Wine Strains Response to Nitrogen Availability

    Barbosa, Catarina; García-Martínez, José; Pérez-Ortín, José E.; Mendes-Ferreira, Ana

    2015-01-01

    Nitrogen levels in grape-juices are of major importance in winemaking ensuring adequate yeast growth and fermentation performance. Here we used a comparative transcriptome analysis to uncover wine yeasts responses to nitrogen availability during fermentation. Gene expression was assessed in three genetically and phenotypically divergent commercial wine strains (CEG, VL1 and QA23), under low (67 mg/L) and high nitrogen (670 mg/L) regimes, at three time points during fermentation (12h, 24h and 96h). Two-way ANOVA analysis of each fermentation condition led to the identification of genes whose expression was dependent on strain, fermentation stage and on the interaction of both factors. The high fermenter yeast strain QA23 was more clearly distinct from the other two strains, by differential expression of genes involved in flocculation, mitochondrial functions, energy generation and protein folding and stabilization. For all strains, higher transcriptional variability due to fermentation stage was seen in the high nitrogen fermentations. A positive correlation between maximum fermentation rate and the expression of genes involved in stress response was observed. The finding of common genes correlated with both fermentation activity and nitrogen up-take underlies the role of nitrogen on yeast fermentative fitness. The comparative analysis of genes differentially expressed between both fermentation conditions at 12h, where the main difference was the level of nitrogen available, showed the highest variability amongst strains revealing strain-specific responses. Nevertheless, we were able to identify a small set of genes whose expression profiles can quantitatively assess the common response of the yeast strains to varying nitrogen conditions. The use of three contrasting yeast strains in gene expression analysis prompts the identification of more reliable, accurate and reproducible biomarkers that will facilitate the diagnosis of deficiency of this nutrient in the grape

  18. STRUCTURED MOLECULAR GAS REVEALS GALACTIC SPIRAL ARMS

    Sawada, Tsuyoshi [Joint ALMA Office, Alonso de Cordova 3107, Vitacura, Santiago 763-0355 (Chile); Hasegawa, Tetsuo [NAOJ Chile Observatory, Joaquin Montero 3000 Oficina 702, Vitacura, Santiago 763-0409 (Chile); Koda, Jin, E-mail: sawada.tsuyoshi@nao.ac.jp [Department of Physics and Astronomy, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY 11794-3800 (United States)

    2012-11-01

    We explore the development of structures in molecular gas in the Milky Way by applying the analysis of the brightness distribution function and the brightness distribution index (BDI) in the archival data from the Boston University-Five College Radio Astronomy Observatory {sup 13}CO J = 1-0 Galactic Ring Survey. The BDI measures the fractional contribution of spatially confined bright molecular emission over faint emission extended over large areas. This relative quantity is largely independent of the amount of molecular gas and of any conventional, pre-conceived structures, such as cores, clumps, or giant molecular clouds. The structured molecular gas traced by higher BDI is located continuously along the spiral arms in the Milky Way in the longitude-velocity diagram. This clearly indicates that molecular gas changes its structure as it flows through the spiral arms. Although the high-BDI gas generally coincides with H II regions, there is also some high-BDI gas with no/little signature of ongoing star formation. These results support a possible evolutionary sequence in which unstructured, diffuse gas transforms itself into a structured state on encountering the spiral arms, followed by star formation and an eventual return to the unstructured state after the spiral arm passage.

  19. Different measures of structural similarity tap different aspects of visual object processing

    Gerlach, Christian

    2017-01-01

    The structural similarity of objects has been an important variable in explaining why some objects are easier to categorize at a superordinate level than to individuate, and also why some patients with brain injury have more difficulties in recognizing natural (structurally similar) objects than...... artifacts (structurally distinct objects). In spite of its merits as an explanatory variable, structural similarity is not a unitary construct, and it has been operationalized in different ways. Furthermore, even though measures of structural similarity have been successful in explaining task and category-effects...

  20. Nicotinamide riboside kinase structures reveal new pathways to NAD+.

    Wolfram Tempel

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available The eukaryotic nicotinamide riboside kinase (Nrk pathway, which is induced in response to nerve damage and promotes replicative life span in yeast, converts nicotinamide riboside to nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+ by phosphorylation and adenylylation. Crystal structures of human Nrk1 bound to nucleoside and nucleotide substrates and products revealed an enzyme structurally similar to Rossmann fold metabolite kinases and allowed the identification of active site residues, which were shown to be essential for human Nrk1 and Nrk2 activity in vivo. Although the structures account for the 500-fold discrimination between nicotinamide riboside and pyrimidine nucleosides, no enzyme feature was identified to recognize the distinctive carboxamide group of nicotinamide riboside. Indeed, nicotinic acid riboside is a specific substrate of human Nrk enzymes and is utilized in yeast in a novel biosynthetic pathway that depends on Nrk and NAD+ synthetase. Additionally, nicotinic acid riboside is utilized in vivo by Urh1, Pnp1, and Preiss-Handler salvage. Thus, crystal structures of Nrk1 led to the identification of new pathways to NAD+.

  1. Towards revealing the structure of bacterial inclusion bodies.

    Wang, Lei

    2009-01-01

    Protein aggregation is a widely observed phenomenon in human diseases, biopharmaceutical production, and biological research. Protein aggregates are generally classified as highly ordered, such as amyloid fibrils, or amorphous, such as bacterial inclusion bodies. Amyloid fibrils are elongated filaments with diameters of 6-12 nm, they are comprised of residue-specific cross-beta structure, and display characteristic properties, such as binding with amyloid-specific dyes. Amyloid fibrils are associated with dozens of human pathological conditions, including Alzheimer disease and prion diseases. Distinguished from amyloid fibrils, bacterial inclusion bodies display apparent amorphous morphology. Inclusion bodies are formed during high-level recombinant protein production, and formation of inclusion bodies is a major concern in biotechnology. Despite of the distinctive morphological difference, bacterial inclusion bodies have been found to have some amyloid-like properties, suggesting that they might contain structures similar to amyloid-like fibrils. Recent structural data further support this hypothesis, and this review summarizes the latest progress towards revealing the structural details of bacterial inclusion bodies.

  2. Thai Language Sentence Similarity Computation Based on Syntactic Structure and Semantic Vector

    Wang, Hongbin; Feng, Yinhan; Cheng, Liang

    2018-03-01

    Sentence similarity computation plays an increasingly important role in text mining, Web page retrieval, machine translation, speech recognition and question answering systems. Thai language as a kind of resources scarce language, it is not like Chinese language with HowNet and CiLin resources. So the Thai sentence similarity research faces some challenges. In order to solve this problem of the Thai language sentence similarity computation. This paper proposes a novel method to compute the similarity of Thai language sentence based on syntactic structure and semantic vector. This method firstly uses the Part-of-Speech (POS) dependency to calculate two sentences syntactic structure similarity, and then through the word vector to calculate two sentences semantic similarity. Finally, we combine the two methods to calculate two Thai language sentences similarity. The proposed method not only considers semantic, but also considers the sentence syntactic structure. The experiment result shows that this method in Thai language sentence similarity computation is feasible.

  3. Similarity of High-Resolution Tandem Mass Spectrometry Spectra of Structurally Related Micropollutants and Transformation Products

    Schollée, Jennifer E.; Schymanski, Emma L.; Stravs, Michael A.; Gulde, Rebekka; Thomaidis, Nikolaos S.; Hollender, Juliane

    2017-12-01

    High-resolution tandem mass spectrometry (HRMS2) with electrospray ionization is frequently applied to study polar organic molecules such as micropollutants. Fragmentation provides structural information to confirm structures of known compounds or propose structures of unknown compounds. Similarity of HRMS2 spectra between structurally related compounds has been suggested to facilitate identification of unknown compounds. To test this hypothesis, the similarity of reference standard HRMS2 spectra was calculated for 243 pairs of micropollutants and their structurally related transformation products (TPs); for comparison, spectral similarity was also calculated for 219 pairs of unrelated compounds. Spectra were measured on Orbitrap and QTOF mass spectrometers and similarity was calculated with the dot product. The influence of different factors on spectral similarity [e.g., normalized collision energy (NCE), merging fragments from all NCEs, and shifting fragments by the mass difference of the pair] was considered. Spectral similarity increased at higher NCEs and highest similarity scores for related pairs were obtained with merged spectra including measured fragments and shifted fragments. Removal of the monoisotopic peak was critical to reduce false positives. Using a spectral similarity score threshold of 0.52, 40% of related pairs and 0% of unrelated pairs were above this value. Structural similarity was estimated with the Tanimoto coefficient and pairs with higher structural similarity generally had higher spectral similarity. Pairs where one or both compounds contained heteroatoms such as sulfur often resulted in dissimilar spectra. This work demonstrates that HRMS2 spectral similarity may indicate structural similarity and that spectral similarity can be used in the future to screen complex samples for related compounds such as micropollutants and TPs, assisting in the prioritization of non-target compounds. [Figure not available: see fulltext.

  4. The mitochondrial genomes of Amphiascoides atopus and Schizopera knabeni (Harpacticoida: Miraciidae) reveal similarities between the copepod orders Harpacticoida and Poecilostomatoida.

    Easton, Erin E; Darrow, Emily M; Spears, Trisha; Thistle, David

    2014-03-15

    Members of subclass Copepoda are abundant, diverse, and-as a result of their variety of ecological roles in marine and freshwater environments-important, but their phylogenetic interrelationships are unclear. Recent studies of arthropods have used gene arrangements in the mitochondrial (mt) genome to infer phylogenies, but for copepods, only seven complete mt genomes have been published. These data revealed several within-order and few among-order similarities. To increase the data available for comparisons, we sequenced the complete mt genome (13,831base pairs) of Amphiascoides atopus and 10,649base pairs of the mt genome of Schizopera knabeni (both in the family Miraciidae of the order Harpacticoida). Comparison of our data to those for Tigriopus japonicus (family Harpacticidae, order Harpacticoida) revealed similarities in gene arrangement among these three species that were consistent with those found within and among families of other copepod orders. Comparison of the mt genomes of our species with those known from other copepod orders revealed the arrangement of mt genes of our Harpacticoida species to be more similar to that of Sinergasilus polycolpus (order Poecilostomatoida) than to that of T. japonicus. The similarities between S. polycolpus and our species are the first to be noted across the boundaries of copepod orders and support the possibility that mt-gene arrangement might be used to infer copepod phylogenies. We also found that our two species had extremely truncated transfer RNAs and that gene overlaps occurred much more frequently than has been reported for other copepod mt genomes. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  5. Seismodynamics of extended underground structures and soils: Statement of the problem and self-similar solutions

    Georgievskii, D. V.; Israilov, M. Sh.

    2015-07-01

    In the problems of common vibrations of extended underground structures (pipelines and tunnels) and soil, an approach of the one-dimensional deformation of the medium is developed; this approach is based on the assumption that the soil deformation in the direction of seismic wave propagation coinciding with the pipeline axis is prevailing. The analytic solutions are obtained in the cases where the wave velocity in the soil is respectively less or greater than the wave velocity in the pipeline. The parameters influencing the pipeline fracture are revealed and methods for increasing the seismic stability of such structures are given. The possibility of the pipeline fatigue fracture is pointed out. The statements and solutions of parabolic problems modeling the physical phenomena in soils in the case of discontinuous velocity on the boundaries at the initial time are given. The notion of generalized vorticity diffusion is introduced and the cases of self-similarity existence are classified. A detailed analysis is performed for the non-Newtonian polynomial fluid, the medium close in properties to the rigidly ideally plastic body, and the viscoplastic Shvedov—Bingham body. In the case of physically linear medium, new self-similar solutions are obtained which describe the process of unsteady axially symmetric shear in spherical coordinates. The first approximation to the asymptotic solution of the problem of the vortex sheet diffusion is constructed in a medium with small polynomial nonlinearity. The solutions polynomially decreasing to zero as the self-similar variable increases are proposed in the class of two-constant fluids.

  6. Structure and floristic similarities of upper montane forests in Serra Fina mountain range, southeastern Brazil

    Leonardo Dias Meireles

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The upper montane forests in the southern and southeastern regions of Brazil have an unusual and discontinuous geographic distribution at the top of the Atlantic coastal mountain ranges. To describe the floristic composition and structure of the Atlantic Forest near its upper altitudinal limit in southeastern Brazil, 30 plots with 10 × 10 m were installed in three forest sites between 2,200 and 2,300 m.a.s.l. at Serra Fina. The floristic composition and phytosociological structure of this forest were compared with other montane and upper montane forests. In total, 704 individuals were included, belonging to 24 species, 15 families, and 19 genera. Myrsinaceae, Myrtaceae, Symplocaceae, and Cunoniaceae were the most important families, and Myrsine gardneriana, Myrceugenia alpigena, Weinmannia humilis, and Symplocos corymboclados were the most important species. The three forest sites revealed differences in the abundance of species, density, canopy height, and number of stems per individual. The upper montane forests showed structural similarities, such as lower richness, diversity, and effective number of species, and they tended to have higher total densities and total dominance per hectare to montane forests. The most important species in these upper montane forests belong to Austral-Antartic genera or neotropical and pantropical genera that are typical of montane areas. The high number of species shared by these forests suggests past connections between the vegetation in southern Brazilian high-altitude areas.

  7. An approach to large scale identification of non-obvious structural similarities between proteins

    Cherkasov, Artem; Jones, Steven JM

    2004-01-01

    Background A new sequence independent bioinformatics approach allowing genome-wide search for proteins with similar three dimensional structures has been developed. By utilizing the numerical output of the sequence threading it establishes putative non-obvious structural similarities between proteins. When applied to the testing set of proteins with known three dimensional structures the developed approach was able to recognize structurally similar proteins with high accuracy. Results The method has been developed to identify pathogenic proteins with low sequence identity and high structural similarity to host analogues. Such protein structure relationships would be hypothesized to arise through convergent evolution or through ancient horizontal gene transfer events, now undetectable using current sequence alignment techniques. The pathogen proteins, which could mimic or interfere with host activities, would represent candidate virulence factors. The developed approach utilizes the numerical outputs from the sequence-structure threading. It identifies the potential structural similarity between a pair of proteins by correlating the threading scores of the corresponding two primary sequences against the library of the standard folds. This approach allowed up to 64% sensitivity and 99.9% specificity in distinguishing protein pairs with high structural similarity. Conclusion Preliminary results obtained by comparison of the genomes of Homo sapiens and several strains of Chlamydia trachomatis have demonstrated the potential usefulness of the method in the identification of bacterial proteins with known or potential roles in virulence. PMID:15147578

  8. An approach to large scale identification of non-obvious structural similarities between proteins

    Cherkasov Artem

    2004-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A new sequence independent bioinformatics approach allowing genome-wide search for proteins with similar three dimensional structures has been developed. By utilizing the numerical output of the sequence threading it establishes putative non-obvious structural similarities between proteins. When applied to the testing set of proteins with known three dimensional structures the developed approach was able to recognize structurally similar proteins with high accuracy. Results The method has been developed to identify pathogenic proteins with low sequence identity and high structural similarity to host analogues. Such protein structure relationships would be hypothesized to arise through convergent evolution or through ancient horizontal gene transfer events, now undetectable using current sequence alignment techniques. The pathogen proteins, which could mimic or interfere with host activities, would represent candidate virulence factors. The developed approach utilizes the numerical outputs from the sequence-structure threading. It identifies the potential structural similarity between a pair of proteins by correlating the threading scores of the corresponding two primary sequences against the library of the standard folds. This approach allowed up to 64% sensitivity and 99.9% specificity in distinguishing protein pairs with high structural similarity. Conclusion Preliminary results obtained by comparison of the genomes of Homo sapiens and several strains of Chlamydia trachomatis have demonstrated the potential usefulness of the method in the identification of bacterial proteins with known or potential roles in virulence.

  9. Artemin Crystal Structure Reveals Insights into Heparan Sulfate Binding

    Silvian,L.; Jin, P.; Carmillo, P.; Boriack-Sjodin, P.; Pelletier, C.; Rushe, M.; Gong, B.; Sah, D.; Pepinsky, B.; Rossomando, A.

    2006-01-01

    Artemin (ART) promotes the growth of developing peripheral neurons by signaling through a multicomponent receptor complex comprised of a transmembrane tyrosine kinase receptor (cRET) and a specific glycosylphosphatidylinositol-linked co-receptor (GFR{alpha}3). Glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) signals through a similar ternary complex but requires heparan sulfate proteoglycans (HSPGs) for full activity. HSPG has not been demonstrated as a requirement for ART signaling. We crystallized ART in the presence of sulfate and solved its structure by isomorphous replacement. The structure reveals ordered sulfate anions bound to arginine residues in the pre-helix and amino-terminal regions that were organized in a triad arrangement characteristic of heparan sulfate. Three residues in the pre-helix were singly or triply substituted with glutamic acid, and the resulting proteins were shown to have reduced heparin-binding affinity that is partly reflected in their ability to activate cRET. This study suggests that ART binds HSPGs and identifies residues that may be involved in HSPG binding.

  10. A Structural-Lexical Measure of Semantic Similarity for Geo-Knowledge Graphs

    Andrea Ballatore

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Graphs have become ubiquitous structures to encode geographic knowledge online. The Semantic Web’s linked open data, folksonomies, wiki websites and open gazetteers can be seen as geo-knowledge graphs, that is labeled graphs whose vertices represent geographic concepts and whose edges encode the relations between concepts. To compute the semantic similarity of concepts in such structures, this article defines the network-lexical similarity measure (NLS. This measure estimates similarity by combining two complementary sources of information: the network similarity of vertices and the semantic similarity of the lexical definitions. NLS is evaluated on the OpenStreetMap Semantic Network, a crowdsourced geo-knowledge graph that describes geographic concepts. The hybrid approach outperforms both network and lexical measures, obtaining very strong correlation with the similarity judgments of human subjects.

  11. Multidrug transporters from bacteria to man : similarities in structure and function

    van Veen, HW; Konings, WN

    Organisms ranging from bacteria to man possess transmembrane transporters which confer resistance to toxic corn pounds. Underlining their biological significance, prokaryotic and eukaryotic multidrug transport proteins are very similar in structure and function. Therefore, a study of the factors

  12. DNA markers reveal genetic structure and localized diversity of ...

    uqhdesma

    2016-10-12

    Oct 12, 2016 ... STRUCTURE analysis revealed 4 clusters of genetically ..... 10000 cycles and 50000 Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) iterations and 10 replicate runs performed for each K value to ..... WL, Lee M, Porter K (2000). Genetic ...

  13. Biochemical characterization of an exonuclease from Arabidopsis thaliana reveals similarities to the DNA exonuclease of the human Werner syndrome protein.

    Plchova, Helena; Hartung, Frank; Puchta, Holger

    2003-11-07

    The human Werner syndrome protein (hWRN-p) possessing DNA helicase and exonuclease activities is essential for genome stability. Plants have no homologue of this bifunctional protein, but surprisingly the Arabidopsis genome contains a small open reading frame (ORF) (AtWRNexo) with homology to the exonuclease domain of hWRN-p. Expression of this ORF in Escherichia coli revealed an exonuclease activity for AtWRN-exo-p with similarities but also some significant differences to hWRN-p. The protein digests recessed strands of DNA duplexes in the 3' --> 5' direction but hardly single-stranded DNA or blunt-ended duplexes. In contrast to the Werner exonuclease, AtWRNexo-p is also able to digest 3'-protruding strands. DNA with recessed 3'-PO4 and 3'-OH termini is degraded to a similar extent. AtWRNexo-p hydrolyzes the 3'-recessed strand termini of duplexes containing mismatched bases. AtWRNexo-p needs the divalent cation Mg2+ for activity, which can be replaced by Mn2+. Apurinic sites, cholesterol adducts, and oxidative DNA damage (such as 8-oxoadenine and 8-oxoguanine) inhibit or block the enzyme. Other DNA modifications, including uracil, hypoxanthine and ethenoadenine, did not inhibit AtWRNexo-p. A mutation of a conserved residue within the exonuclease domain (E135A) completely abolished the exonucleolytic activity. Our results indicate that a type of WRN-like exonuclease activity seems to be a common feature of the DNA metabolism of animals and plants.

  14. A Feature-Based Structural Measure: An Image Similarity Measure for Face Recognition

    Noor Abdalrazak Shnain

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Facial recognition is one of the most challenging and interesting problems within the field of computer vision and pattern recognition. During the last few years, it has gained special attention due to its importance in relation to current issues such as security, surveillance systems and forensics analysis. Despite this high level of attention to facial recognition, the success is still limited by certain conditions; there is no method which gives reliable results in all situations. In this paper, we propose an efficient similarity index that resolves the shortcomings of the existing measures of feature and structural similarity. This measure, called the Feature-Based Structural Measure (FSM, combines the best features of the well-known SSIM (structural similarity index measure and FSIM (feature similarity index measure approaches, striking a balance between performance for similar and dissimilar images of human faces. In addition to the statistical structural properties provided by SSIM, edge detection is incorporated in FSM as a distinctive structural feature. Its performance is tested for a wide range of PSNR (peak signal-to-noise ratio, using ORL (Olivetti Research Laboratory, now AT&T Laboratory Cambridge and FEI (Faculty of Industrial Engineering, São Bernardo do Campo, São Paulo, Brazil databases. The proposed measure is tested under conditions of Gaussian noise; simulation results show that the proposed FSM outperforms the well-known SSIM and FSIM approaches in its efficiency of similarity detection and recognition of human faces.

  15. Identification of similar regions of protein structures using integrated sequence and structure analysis tools

    Heiland Randy

    2006-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Understanding protein function from its structure is a challenging problem. Sequence based approaches for finding homology have broad use for annotation of both structure and function. 3D structural information of protein domains and their interactions provide a complementary view to structure function relationships to sequence information. We have developed a web site http://www.sblest.org/ and an API of web services that enables users to submit protein structures and identify statistically significant neighbors and the underlying structural environments that make that match using a suite of sequence and structure analysis tools. To do this, we have integrated S-BLEST, PSI-BLAST and HMMer based superfamily predictions to give a unique integrated view to prediction of SCOP superfamilies, EC number, and GO term, as well as identification of the protein structural environments that are associated with that prediction. Additionally, we have extended UCSF Chimera and PyMOL to support our web services, so that users can characterize their own proteins of interest. Results Users are able to submit their own queries or use a structure already in the PDB. Currently the databases that a user can query include the popular structural datasets ASTRAL 40 v1.69, ASTRAL 95 v1.69, CLUSTER50, CLUSTER70 and CLUSTER90 and PDBSELECT25. The results can be downloaded directly from the site and include function prediction, analysis of the most conserved environments and automated annotation of query proteins. These results reflect both the hits found with PSI-BLAST, HMMer and with S-BLEST. We have evaluated how well annotation transfer can be performed on SCOP ID's, Gene Ontology (GO ID's and EC Numbers. The method is very efficient and totally automated, generally taking around fifteen minutes for a 400 residue protein. Conclusion With structural genomics initiatives determining structures with little, if any, functional characterization

  16. ProCKSI: a decision support system for Protein (Structure Comparison, Knowledge, Similarity and Information

    Błażewicz Jacek

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background We introduce the decision support system for Protein (Structure Comparison, Knowledge, Similarity and Information (ProCKSI. ProCKSI integrates various protein similarity measures through an easy to use interface that allows the comparison of multiple proteins simultaneously. It employs the Universal Similarity Metric (USM, the Maximum Contact Map Overlap (MaxCMO of protein structures and other external methods such as the DaliLite and the TM-align methods, the Combinatorial Extension (CE of the optimal path, and the FAST Align and Search Tool (FAST. Additionally, ProCKSI allows the user to upload a user-defined similarity matrix supplementing the methods mentioned, and computes a similarity consensus in order to provide a rich, integrated, multicriteria view of large datasets of protein structures. Results We present ProCKSI's architecture and workflow describing its intuitive user interface, and show its potential on three distinct test-cases. In the first case, ProCKSI is used to evaluate the results of a previous CASP competition, assessing the similarity of proposed models for given targets where the structures could have a large deviation from one another. To perform this type of comparison reliably, we introduce a new consensus method. The second study deals with the verification of a classification scheme for protein kinases, originally derived by sequence comparison by Hanks and Hunter, but here we use a consensus similarity measure based on structures. In the third experiment using the Rost and Sander dataset (RS126, we investigate how a combination of different sets of similarity measures influences the quality and performance of ProCKSI's new consensus measure. ProCKSI performs well with all three datasets, showing its potential for complex, simultaneous multi-method assessment of structural similarity in large protein datasets. Furthermore, combining different similarity measures is usually more robust than

  17. Fast protein tertiary structure retrieval based on global surface shape similarity.

    Sael, Lee; Li, Bin; La, David; Fang, Yi; Ramani, Karthik; Rustamov, Raif; Kihara, Daisuke

    2008-09-01

    Characterization and identification of similar tertiary structure of proteins provides rich information for investigating function and evolution. The importance of structure similarity searches is increasing as structure databases continue to expand, partly due to the structural genomics projects. A crucial drawback of conventional protein structure comparison methods, which compare structures by their main-chain orientation or the spatial arrangement of secondary structure, is that a database search is too slow to be done in real-time. Here we introduce a global surface shape representation by three-dimensional (3D) Zernike descriptors, which represent a protein structure compactly as a series expansion of 3D functions. With this simplified representation, the search speed against a few thousand structures takes less than a minute. To investigate the agreement between surface representation defined by 3D Zernike descriptor and conventional main-chain based representation, a benchmark was performed against a protein classification generated by the combinatorial extension algorithm. Despite the different representation, 3D Zernike descriptor retrieved proteins of the same conformation defined by combinatorial extension in 89.6% of the cases within the top five closest structures. The real-time protein structure search by 3D Zernike descriptor will open up new possibility of large-scale global and local protein surface shape comparison. 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  18. Discrete Self-Similarity in Interfacial Hydrodynamics and the Formation of Iterated Structures.

    Dallaston, Michael C; Fontelos, Marco A; Tseluiko, Dmitri; Kalliadasis, Serafim

    2018-01-19

    The formation of iterated structures, such as satellite and subsatellite drops, filaments, and bubbles, is a common feature in interfacial hydrodynamics. Here we undertake a computational and theoretical study of their origin in the case of thin films of viscous fluids that are destabilized by long-range molecular or other forces. We demonstrate that iterated structures appear as a consequence of discrete self-similarity, where certain patterns repeat themselves, subject to rescaling, periodically in a logarithmic time scale. The result is an infinite sequence of ridges and filaments with similarity properties. The character of these discretely self-similar solutions as the result of a Hopf bifurcation from ordinarily self-similar solutions is also described.

  19. Local-global alignment for finding 3D similarities in protein structures

    Zemla, Adam T [Brentwood, CA

    2011-09-20

    A method of finding 3D similarities in protein structures of a first molecule and a second molecule. The method comprises providing preselected information regarding the first molecule and the second molecule. Comparing the first molecule and the second molecule using Longest Continuous Segments (LCS) analysis. Comparing the first molecule and the second molecule using Global Distance Test (GDT) analysis. Comparing the first molecule and the second molecule using Local Global Alignment Scoring function (LGA_S) analysis. Verifying constructed alignment and repeating the steps to find the regions of 3D similarities in protein structures.

  20. Electron microscopy and in vitro deneddylation reveal similar architectures and biochemistry of isolated human and Flag-mouse COP9 signalosome complexes

    Rockel, Beate; Schmaler, Tilo; Huang, Xiaohua; Dubiel, Wolfgang

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • Deneddylation rates of human erythrocyte and mouse fibroblast CSN are very similar. • 3D models of native human and mouse CSN reveal common architectures. • The cryo-structure of native mammalian CSN shows a horseshoe subunit arrangement. - Abstract: The COP9 signalosome (CSN) is a regulator of the ubiquitin (Ub) proteasome system (UPS). In the UPS, proteins are Ub-labeled for degradation by Ub ligases conferring substrate specificity. The CSN controls a large family of Ub ligases called cullin-RING ligases (CRLs), which ubiquitinate cell cycle regulators, transcription factors and DNA damage response proteins. The CSN possesses structural similarities with the 26S proteasome Lid complex and the translation initiation complex 3 (eIF3) indicating similar ancestry and function. Initial structures were obtained 14 years ago by 2D electron microscopy (EM). Recently, first 3D molecular models of the CSN were created on the basis of negative-stain EM and single-particle analysis, mostly with recombinant complexes. Here, we compare deneddylating activity and structural features of CSN complexes purified in an elaborate procedure from human erythrocytes and efficiently pulled down from mouse Flag-CSN2 B8 fibroblasts. In an in vitro deneddylation assay both the human and the mouse CSN complexes deneddylated Nedd8-Cul1 with comparable rates. 3D structural models of the erythrocyte CSN as well as of the mouse Flag-CSN were generated by negative stain EM and by cryo-EM. Both complexes show a central U-shaped segment from which several arms emanate. This structure, called the horseshoe, is formed by the PCI domain subunits. CSN5 and CSN6 point away from the horseshoe. Compared to 3D models of negatively stained CSN complexes, densities assigned to CSN2 and CSN4 are better defined in the cryo-map. Because biochemical and structural results obtained with CSN complexes isolated from human erythrocytes and purified by Flag-CSN pulldown from mouse B8 fibroblasts

  1. Electron microscopy and in vitro deneddylation reveal similar architectures and biochemistry of isolated human and Flag-mouse COP9 signalosome complexes

    Rockel, Beate [Department of Molecular Structural Biology, Max-Planck-Institute of Biochemistry, Am Klopferspitz 18, 82152 Martinsried (Germany); Schmaler, Tilo; Huang, Xiaohua [Division of Molecular Biology, Department of General, Visceral, Vascular and Thoracic Surgery, Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Charitéplatz 1, 10117 Berlin (Germany); Dubiel, Wolfgang, E-mail: Wolfgang.dubiel@charite.de [Division of Molecular Biology, Department of General, Visceral, Vascular and Thoracic Surgery, Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Charitéplatz 1, 10117 Berlin (Germany)

    2014-07-25

    Highlights: • Deneddylation rates of human erythrocyte and mouse fibroblast CSN are very similar. • 3D models of native human and mouse CSN reveal common architectures. • The cryo-structure of native mammalian CSN shows a horseshoe subunit arrangement. - Abstract: The COP9 signalosome (CSN) is a regulator of the ubiquitin (Ub) proteasome system (UPS). In the UPS, proteins are Ub-labeled for degradation by Ub ligases conferring substrate specificity. The CSN controls a large family of Ub ligases called cullin-RING ligases (CRLs), which ubiquitinate cell cycle regulators, transcription factors and DNA damage response proteins. The CSN possesses structural similarities with the 26S proteasome Lid complex and the translation initiation complex 3 (eIF3) indicating similar ancestry and function. Initial structures were obtained 14 years ago by 2D electron microscopy (EM). Recently, first 3D molecular models of the CSN were created on the basis of negative-stain EM and single-particle analysis, mostly with recombinant complexes. Here, we compare deneddylating activity and structural features of CSN complexes purified in an elaborate procedure from human erythrocytes and efficiently pulled down from mouse Flag-CSN2 B8 fibroblasts. In an in vitro deneddylation assay both the human and the mouse CSN complexes deneddylated Nedd8-Cul1 with comparable rates. 3D structural models of the erythrocyte CSN as well as of the mouse Flag-CSN were generated by negative stain EM and by cryo-EM. Both complexes show a central U-shaped segment from which several arms emanate. This structure, called the horseshoe, is formed by the PCI domain subunits. CSN5 and CSN6 point away from the horseshoe. Compared to 3D models of negatively stained CSN complexes, densities assigned to CSN2 and CSN4 are better defined in the cryo-map. Because biochemical and structural results obtained with CSN complexes isolated from human erythrocytes and purified by Flag-CSN pulldown from mouse B8 fibroblasts

  2. Ocean Acidification Experiments in Large-Scale Mesocosms Reveal Similar Dynamics of Dissolved Organic Matter Production and Biotransformation

    Maren Zark

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Dissolved organic matter (DOM represents a major reservoir of carbon in the oceans. Environmental stressors such as ocean acidification (OA potentially affect DOM production and degradation processes, e.g., phytoplankton exudation or microbial uptake and biotransformation of molecules. Resulting changes in carbon storage capacity of the ocean, thus, may cause feedbacks on the global carbon cycle. Previous experiments studying OA effects on the DOM pool under natural conditions, however, were mostly conducted in temperate and coastal eutrophic areas. Here, we report on OA effects on the existing and newly produced DOM pool during an experiment in the subtropical North Atlantic Ocean at the Canary Islands during an (1 oligotrophic phase and (2 after simulated deep water upwelling. The last is a frequently occurring event in this region controlling nutrient and phytoplankton dynamics. We manipulated nine large-scale mesocosms with a gradient of pCO2 ranging from ~350 up to ~1,030 μatm and monitored the DOM molecular composition using ultrahigh-resolution mass spectrometry via Fourier-transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry (FT-ICR-MS. An increase of 37 μmol L−1 DOC was observed in all mesocosms during a phytoplankton bloom induced by simulated upwelling. Indications for enhanced DOC accumulation under elevated CO2 became apparent during a phase of nutrient recycling toward the end of the experiment. The production of DOM was reflected in changes of the molecular DOM composition. Out of the 7,212 molecular formulae, which were detected throughout the experiment, ~50% correlated significantly in mass spectrometric signal intensity with cumulative bacterial protein production (BPP and are likely a product of microbial transformation. However, no differences in the produced compounds were found with respect to CO2 levels. Comparing the results of this experiment with a comparable OA experiment in the Swedish Gullmar Fjord, reveals

  3. Similarity between community structures of different online social networks and its impact on underlying community detection

    Fan, W.; Yeung, K. H.

    2015-03-01

    As social networking services are popular, many people may register in more than one online social network. In this paper we study a set of users who have accounts of three online social networks: namely Foursquare, Facebook and Twitter. Community structure of this set of users may be reflected in these three online social networks. Therefore, high correlation between these reflections and the underlying community structure may be observed. In this work, community structures are detected in all three online social networks. Also, we investigate the similarity level of community structures across different networks. It is found that they show strong correlation with each other. The similarity between different networks may be helpful to find a community structure close to the underlying one. To verify this, we propose a method to increase the weights of some connections in networks. With this method, new networks are generated to assist community detection. By doing this, value of modularity can be improved and the new community structure match network's natural structure better. In this paper we also show that the detected community structures of online social networks are correlated with users' locations which are identified on Foursquare. This information may also be useful for underlying community detection.

  4. Weighted similarity-based clustering of chemical structures and bioactivity data in early drug discovery.

    Perualila-Tan, Nolen Joy; Shkedy, Ziv; Talloen, Willem; Göhlmann, Hinrich W H; Moerbeke, Marijke Van; Kasim, Adetayo

    2016-08-01

    The modern process of discovering candidate molecules in early drug discovery phase includes a wide range of approaches to extract vital information from the intersection of biology and chemistry. A typical strategy in compound selection involves compound clustering based on chemical similarity to obtain representative chemically diverse compounds (not incorporating potency information). In this paper, we propose an integrative clustering approach that makes use of both biological (compound efficacy) and chemical (structural features) data sources for the purpose of discovering a subset of compounds with aligned structural and biological properties. The datasets are integrated at the similarity level by assigning complementary weights to produce a weighted similarity matrix, serving as a generic input in any clustering algorithm. This new analysis work flow is semi-supervised method since, after the determination of clusters, a secondary analysis is performed wherein it finds differentially expressed genes associated to the derived integrated cluster(s) to further explain the compound-induced biological effects inside the cell. In this paper, datasets from two drug development oncology projects are used to illustrate the usefulness of the weighted similarity-based clustering approach to integrate multi-source high-dimensional information to aid drug discovery. Compounds that are structurally and biologically similar to the reference compounds are discovered using this proposed integrative approach.

  5. Comparative analysis of chemical similarity methods for modular natural products with a hypothetical structure enumeration algorithm.

    Skinnider, Michael A; Dejong, Chris A; Franczak, Brian C; McNicholas, Paul D; Magarvey, Nathan A

    2017-08-16

    Natural products represent a prominent source of pharmaceutically and industrially important agents. Calculating the chemical similarity of two molecules is a central task in cheminformatics, with applications at multiple stages of the drug discovery pipeline. Quantifying the similarity of natural products is a particularly important problem, as the biological activities of these molecules have been extensively optimized by natural selection. The large and structurally complex scaffolds of natural products distinguish their physical and chemical properties from those of synthetic compounds. However, no analysis of the performance of existing methods for molecular similarity calculation specific to natural products has been reported to date. Here, we present LEMONS, an algorithm for the enumeration of hypothetical modular natural product structures. We leverage this algorithm to conduct a comparative analysis of molecular similarity methods within the unique chemical space occupied by modular natural products using controlled synthetic data, and comprehensively investigate the impact of diverse biosynthetic parameters on similarity search. We additionally investigate a recently described algorithm for natural product retrobiosynthesis and alignment, and find that when rule-based retrobiosynthesis can be applied, this approach outperforms conventional two-dimensional fingerprints, suggesting it may represent a valuable approach for the targeted exploration of natural product chemical space and microbial genome mining. Our open-source algorithm is an extensible method of enumerating hypothetical natural product structures with diverse potential applications in bioinformatics.

  6. Identification of structural similarities between putative transmission proteins of Polymyxa and Spongospora transmitted bymoviruses and furoviruses.

    Dessens, J T; Meyer, M

    1996-01-01

    Comparison of amino acid sequence and hydropathy profiles shows conserved, structural similarities between the capsid readthrough protein of potato mop top virus (transmitted by Spongospora subterranea) and furovirus and bymovirus proteins implicated in transmission by Polymyxa spp. This suggests that these proteins have a common ancestry and are involved in a common biological process: virus transmission by plasmodiophorid fungi.

  7. Structure defects in malachite revealed by positron annihilation

    Geffroy, B.; Diallo, I.; Paulin, R.

    1984-01-01

    Positron lifetime is measured between 77 and 400 K in two malachite samples with different mineralogical structures. The complex spectrum found in zoned malachite reveals a microporosity which remains stable in this range of temperature. Besides, above 200 K, equilibrium defects appear. Their formation energy is estimated to be Esub(f) = 0.27 +- 0.02 eV [fr

  8. Structure defects in malachite revealed by positron annihilation

    Geffroy, B; Diallo, I; Paulin, R [Institut National des Sciences et Techniques Nucleaires, CEN/Saclay, 91 - Gif-sur-Yvette (France)

    1984-01-01

    Positron lifetime is measured between 77 and 400 K in two malachite samples with different mineralogical structures. The complex spectrum found in zoned malachite reveals a microporosity which remains stable in this range of temperature. Besides, above 200 K, equilibrium defects appear. Their formation energy is estimated to be Esub(f) = 0.27 +- 0.02 eV.

  9. Volutin granules of Eimeria parasites are acidic compartments and have physiological and structural characteristics similar to acidocalcisomes

    Medeiros, Lia Carolina Soares; Gomes, Fabio; Maciel, Luis Renato Maia; Seabra, Sergio Henrique; Docampo, Roberto; Moreno, Silvia; Plattner, Helmut; Hentschel, Joachim; Kawazoe, Urara; Barrabin, Hector; de Souza, Wanderley; DaMatta, Renato Augusto; Miranda, Kildare

    2012-01-01

    The structural organization of parasites has been the subject of investigation by many groups and has lead to the identification of structures and metabolic pathways that may represent targets for anti-parasitic drugs. A specific group of organelles named acidocalcisomes has been identified in a number of organisms, including the apicomplexan parasites such as Toxoplasma and Plasmodium, where they have been shown to be involved in cation homeostasis, polyphosphate metabolism, and osmoregulation. Their structural counterparts in the apicomplexan parasite Eimeria have not been fully characterized. In this work, the ultrastructural and chemical properties of acidocalcisomes in Eimeria were characterized. Electron microscopy analysis of Eimeria parasites showed the dense organelles called volutin granules similar to acidocalcisomes. Immunolocalization of the vacuolar proton pyrophosphatase, considered as a marker for acidocalcisomes, showed labeling in vesicles of size and distribution similar to the dense organelles seen by electron microscopy. Spectrophotometric measurements of the kinetics of proton uptake showed a vacuolar proton pyrophosphatase activity. X-ray mapping revealed significant amounts of Na, Mg, P, K, Ca, and Zn in their matrix. The results suggest that volutin granules of Eimeria parasites are acidic, dense organelles and possess structural and chemical properties analogous to those of other acidocalcisomes, suggesting a similar functional role in these parasites. PMID:21699625

  10. Cloud4Psi: cloud computing for 3D protein structure similarity searching.

    Mrozek, Dariusz; Małysiak-Mrozek, Bożena; Kłapciński, Artur

    2014-10-01

    Popular methods for 3D protein structure similarity searching, especially those that generate high-quality alignments such as Combinatorial Extension (CE) and Flexible structure Alignment by Chaining Aligned fragment pairs allowing Twists (FATCAT) are still time consuming. As a consequence, performing similarity searching against large repositories of structural data requires increased computational resources that are not always available. Cloud computing provides huge amounts of computational power that can be provisioned on a pay-as-you-go basis. We have developed the cloud-based system that allows scaling of the similarity searching process vertically and horizontally. Cloud4Psi (Cloud for Protein Similarity) was tested in the Microsoft Azure cloud environment and provided good, almost linearly proportional acceleration when scaled out onto many computational units. Cloud4Psi is available as Software as a Service for testing purposes at: http://cloud4psi.cloudapp.net/. For source code and software availability, please visit the Cloud4Psi project home page at http://zti.polsl.pl/dmrozek/science/cloud4psi.htm. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press.

  11. Structural similarities between brain and linguistic data provide evidence of semantic relations in the brain.

    Colleen E Crangle

    Full Text Available This paper presents a new method of analysis by which structural similarities between brain data and linguistic data can be assessed at the semantic level. It shows how to measure the strength of these structural similarities and so determine the relatively better fit of the brain data with one semantic model over another. The first model is derived from WordNet, a lexical database of English compiled by language experts. The second is given by the corpus-based statistical technique of latent semantic analysis (LSA, which detects relations between words that are latent or hidden in text. The brain data are drawn from experiments in which statements about the geography of Europe were presented auditorily to participants who were asked to determine their truth or falsity while electroencephalographic (EEG recordings were made. The theoretical framework for the analysis of the brain and semantic data derives from axiomatizations of theories such as the theory of differences in utility preference. Using brain-data samples from individual trials time-locked to the presentation of each word, ordinal relations of similarity differences are computed for the brain data and for the linguistic data. In each case those relations that are invariant with respect to the brain and linguistic data, and are correlated with sufficient statistical strength, amount to structural similarities between the brain and linguistic data. Results show that many more statistically significant structural similarities can be found between the brain data and the WordNet-derived data than the LSA-derived data. The work reported here is placed within the context of other recent studies of semantics and the brain. The main contribution of this paper is the new method it presents for the study of semantics and the brain and the focus it permits on networks of relations detected in brain data and represented by a semantic model.

  12. Pairwise local structural alignment of RNA sequences with sequence similarity less than 40%

    Havgaard, Jakob Hull; Lyngsø, Rune B.; Stormo, Gary D.

    2005-01-01

    detect two genes with low sequence similarity, where the genes are part of a larger genomic region. Results: Here we present such an approach for pairwise local alignment which is based on FILDALIGN and the Sankoff algorithm for simultaneous structural alignment of multiple sequences. We include...... the ability to conduct mutual scans of two sequences of arbitrary length while searching for common local structural motifs of some maximum length. This drastically reduces the complexity of the algorithm. The scoring scheme includes structural parameters corresponding to those available for free energy....... The structure prediction performance for a family is typically around 0.7 using Matthews correlation coefficient. In case (2), the algorithm is successful at locating RNA families with an average sensitivity of 0.8 and a positive predictive value of 0.9 using a BLAST-like hit selection scheme. Availability...

  13. Wind loads and competition for light sculpt trees into self-similar structures.

    Eloy, Christophe; Fournier, Meriem; Lacointe, André; Moulia, Bruno

    2017-10-18

    Trees are self-similar structures: their branch lengths and diameters vary allometrically within the tree architecture, with longer and thicker branches near the ground. These tree allometries are often attributed to optimisation of hydraulic sap transport and safety against elastic buckling. Here, we show that these allometries also emerge from a model that includes competition for light, wind biomechanics and no hydraulics. We have developed MECHATREE, a numerical model of trees growing and evolving on a virtual island. With this model, we identify the fittest growth strategy when trees compete for light and allocate their photosynthates to grow seeds, create new branches or reinforce existing ones in response to wind-induced loads. Strikingly, we find that selected trees species are self-similar and follow allometric scalings similar to those observed on dicots and conifers. This result suggests that resistance to wind and competition for light play an essential role in determining tree allometries.

  14. Improvement of training set structure in fusion data cleaning using Time-Domain Global Similarity method

    Liu, J.; Lan, T.; Qin, H.

    2017-01-01

    Traditional data cleaning identifies dirty data by classifying original data sequences, which is a class-imbalanced problem since the proportion of incorrect data is much less than the proportion of correct ones for most diagnostic systems in Magnetic Confinement Fusion (MCF) devices. When using machine learning algorithms to classify diagnostic data based on class-imbalanced training set, most classifiers are biased towards the major class and show very poor classification rates on the minor class. By transforming the direct classification problem about original data sequences into a classification problem about the physical similarity between data sequences, the class-balanced effect of Time-Domain Global Similarity (TDGS) method on training set structure is investigated in this paper. Meanwhile, the impact of improved training set structure on data cleaning performance of TDGS method is demonstrated with an application example in EAST POlarimetry-INTerferometry (POINT) system.

  15. Searching the protein structure database for ligand-binding site similarities using CPASS v.2

    Caprez Adam

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A recent analysis of protein sequences deposited in the NCBI RefSeq database indicates that ~8.5 million protein sequences are encoded in prokaryotic and eukaryotic genomes, where ~30% are explicitly annotated as "hypothetical" or "uncharacterized" protein. Our Comparison of Protein Active-Site Structures (CPASS v.2 database and software compares the sequence and structural characteristics of experimentally determined ligand binding sites to infer a functional relationship in the absence of global sequence or structure similarity. CPASS is an important component of our Functional Annotation Screening Technology by NMR (FAST-NMR protocol and has been successfully applied to aid the annotation of a number of proteins of unknown function. Findings We report a major upgrade to our CPASS software and database that significantly improves its broad utility. CPASS v.2 is designed with a layered architecture to increase flexibility and portability that also enables job distribution over the Open Science Grid (OSG to increase speed. Similarly, the CPASS interface was enhanced to provide more user flexibility in submitting a CPASS query. CPASS v.2 now allows for both automatic and manual definition of ligand-binding sites and permits pair-wise, one versus all, one versus list, or list versus list comparisons. Solvent accessible surface area, ligand root-mean square difference, and Cβ distances have been incorporated into the CPASS similarity function to improve the quality of the results. The CPASS database has also been updated. Conclusions CPASS v.2 is more than an order of magnitude faster than the original implementation, and allows for multiple simultaneous job submissions. Similarly, the CPASS database of ligand-defined binding sites has increased in size by ~ 38%, dramatically increasing the likelihood of a positive search result. The modification to the CPASS similarity function is effective in reducing CPASS similarity scores

  16. Characterization of dermal plates from armored catfish Pterygoplichthys pardalis reveals sandwich-like nanocomposite structure.

    Ebenstein, Donna; Calderon, Carlos; Troncoso, Omar P; Torres, Fernando G

    2015-05-01

    Dermal plates from armored catfish are bony structures that cover their body. In this paper we characterized structural, chemical, and nanomechanical properties of the dermal plates from the Amazonian fish Pterygoplichthys pardalis. Analysis of the morphology of the plates using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) revealed that the dermal plates have a sandwich-like structure composed of an inner porous matrix surrounded by two external dense layers. This is different from the plywood-like laminated structure of elasmoid fish scales but similar to the structure of osteoderms found in the dermal armour of some reptiles and mammals. Chemical analysis performed using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and X-ray diffraction (XRD) results revealed similarities between the composition of P. pardalis plates and the elasmoid fish scales of Arapaima gigas. Reduced moduli of P. pardalis plates measured using nanoindentation were also consistent with reported values for A. gigas scales, but further revealed that the dermal plate is an anisotropic and heterogeneous material, similar to many other fish scales and osteoderms. It is postulated that the sandwich-like structure of the dermal plates provides a lightweight and tough protective layer. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. RxnFinder: biochemical reaction search engines using molecular structures, molecular fragments and reaction similarity.

    Hu, Qian-Nan; Deng, Zhe; Hu, Huanan; Cao, Dong-Sheng; Liang, Yi-Zeng

    2011-09-01

    Biochemical reactions play a key role to help sustain life and allow cells to grow. RxnFinder was developed to search biochemical reactions from KEGG reaction database using three search criteria: molecular structures, molecular fragments and reaction similarity. RxnFinder is helpful to get reference reactions for biosynthesis and xenobiotics metabolism. RxnFinder is freely available via: http://sdd.whu.edu.cn/rxnfinder. qnhu@whu.edu.cn.

  18. Ectopic osteogenesis and angiogenesis regulated by porous architecture of hydroxyapatite scaffolds with similar interconnecting structure in vivo

    Li, Jinyu; Zhi, Wei; Xu, Taotao; Shi, Feng; Duan, Ke; Wang, Jianxin; Mu, Yandong; Weng, Jie

    2016-01-01

    The macro-pore sizes of porous scaffold play a key role for regulating ectopic osteogenesis and angiogenesis but many researches ignored the influence of interconnection between macro-pores with different sizes. In order to accurately reveal the relationship between ectopic osteogenesis and macro-pore sizes in dorsal muscle and abdominal cavities of dogs, hydroxyapatite (HA) scaffolds with three different macro-pore sizes of 500–650, 750–900 and 1100–1250 µm were prepared via sugar spheres-leaching process, which also had similar interconnecting structure determined by keeping the d/s ratio of interconnecting window diameter to macro-pore size constant. The permeability test showed that the seepage flow of fluid through the porous scaffolds increased with the increase of macro-pore sizes. The cell growth in three scaffolds was not affected by the macro-pore sizes. The in vivo ectopic implantation results indicated that the macro-pore sizes of HA scaffolds with the similar interconnecting structure have impact not only the speed of osteogenesis and angiogenesis but also the space distribution of newly formed bone. The scaffold with macro-pore sizes of 750–900 µm exhibited much faster angiogenesis and osteogenesis, and much more uniformly distribution of new bone than those with other macro-pore sizes. This work illustrates the importance of a suitable macro-pore sizes in HA scaffolds with the similar interconnecting structure which provides the environment for ectopic osteogenesis and angiogenesis. PMID:27699059

  19. Self-similarities of periodic structures for a discrete model of a two-gene system

    Souza, S.L.T. de; Lima, A.A.; Caldas, I.L.; Medrano-T, R.O.; Guimarães-Filho, Z.O.

    2012-01-01

    We report self-similar properties of periodic structures remarkably organized in the two-parameter space for a two-gene system, described by two-dimensional symmetric map. The map consists of difference equations derived from the chemical reactions for gene expression and regulation. We characterize the system by using Lyapunov exponents and isoperiodic diagrams identifying periodic windows, denominated Arnold tongues and shrimp-shaped structures. Period-adding sequences are observed for both periodic windows. We also identify Fibonacci-type series and Golden ratio for Arnold tongues, and period multiple-of-three windows for shrimps. -- Highlights: ► The existence of noticeable periodic windows has been reported recently for several nonlinear systems. ► The periodic window distributions appear highly organized in two-parameter space. ► We characterize self-similar properties of Arnold tongues and shrimps for a two-gene model. ► We determine the period of the Arnold tongues recognizing a Fibonacci-type sequence. ► We explore self-similar features of the shrimps identifying multiple period-three structures.

  20. Self-similarities of periodic structures for a discrete model of a two-gene system

    Souza, S.L.T. de, E-mail: thomaz@ufsj.edu.br [Departamento de Física e Matemática, Universidade Federal de São João del-Rei, Ouro Branco, MG (Brazil); Lima, A.A. [Escola de Farmácia, Universidade Federal de Ouro Preto, Ouro Preto, MG (Brazil); Caldas, I.L. [Instituto de Física, Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP (Brazil); Medrano-T, R.O. [Departamento de Ciências Exatas e da Terra, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, Diadema, SP (Brazil); Guimarães-Filho, Z.O. [Aix-Marseille Univ., CNRS PIIM UMR6633, International Institute for Fusion Science, Marseille (France)

    2012-03-12

    We report self-similar properties of periodic structures remarkably organized in the two-parameter space for a two-gene system, described by two-dimensional symmetric map. The map consists of difference equations derived from the chemical reactions for gene expression and regulation. We characterize the system by using Lyapunov exponents and isoperiodic diagrams identifying periodic windows, denominated Arnold tongues and shrimp-shaped structures. Period-adding sequences are observed for both periodic windows. We also identify Fibonacci-type series and Golden ratio for Arnold tongues, and period multiple-of-three windows for shrimps. -- Highlights: ► The existence of noticeable periodic windows has been reported recently for several nonlinear systems. ► The periodic window distributions appear highly organized in two-parameter space. ► We characterize self-similar properties of Arnold tongues and shrimps for a two-gene model. ► We determine the period of the Arnold tongues recognizing a Fibonacci-type sequence. ► We explore self-similar features of the shrimps identifying multiple period-three structures.

  1. Structure modulates similarity-based interference in sluicing: An eye tracking study.

    Jesse A. Harris

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available In cue-based content-addressable approaches to memory, a target and its competitors are retrieved in parallel from memory via a fast, associative cue-matching procedure under a severely limited focus of attention. Such a parallel matching procedure could in principle ignore the serial order or hierarchical structure characteristic of linguistic relations. I present an eye tracking while reading experiment that investigates whether the sentential position of a potential antecedent modulates the strength of similarity-based interference, a well-studied effect in which increased similarity in features between a target and its competitors results in slower and less accurate retrieval overall. The manipulation trades on an independently established Locality bias in sluiced structures to associate a wh-remnant (which ones in clausal ellipsis with the most local correlate (some wines, as in The tourists enjoyed some wines, but I don’t know which ones. The findings generally support cue-based parsing models of sentence processing that are subject to similarity-based interference in retrieval, and provide additional support to the growing body of evidence that retrieval is sensitive to both the structural position of a target antecedent and its competitors, and the specificity of retrieval cues.

  2. Internal structures of self-organized relaxed states and self-similar decay phase

    Kondoh, Yoshiomi

    1992-03-01

    A thought analysis on relaxation due to nonlinear processes is presented to lead to a set of general thoughts applicable to general nonlinear dynamical systems for finding out internal structures of the self-organized relaxed state without using 'invariant'. Three applications of the set of general thoughts to energy relaxations in resistive MHD plasmas, incompressible viscous fluids, and incompressible viscous MHD fluids are shown to lead to the internal structures of the self-organized relaxed states. It is shown that all of the relaxed states in these three dynamical systems are followed by self-similar decay phase without significant change of the spatial structure. The well known relaxed state of ∇ x B = ±λ B is shown to be derived generally in the low β plasma limit. (author)

  3. Investigation of Time Series Representations and Similarity Measures for Structural Damage Pattern Recognition

    Wenjia Liu

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper investigates the time series representation methods and similarity measures for sensor data feature extraction and structural damage pattern recognition. Both model-based time series representation and dimensionality reduction methods are studied to compare the effectiveness of feature extraction for damage pattern recognition. The evaluation of feature extraction methods is performed by examining the separation of feature vectors among different damage patterns and the pattern recognition success rate. In addition, the impact of similarity measures on the pattern recognition success rate and the metrics for damage localization are also investigated. The test data used in this study are from the System Identification to Monitor Civil Engineering Structures (SIMCES Z24 Bridge damage detection tests, a rigorous instrumentation campaign that recorded the dynamic performance of a concrete box-girder bridge under progressively increasing damage scenarios. A number of progressive damage test case datasets and damage test data with different damage modalities are used. The simulation results show that both time series representation methods and similarity measures have significant impact on the pattern recognition success rate.

  4. Investigation of Time Series Representations and Similarity Measures for Structural Damage Pattern Recognition

    Swartz, R. Andrew

    2013-01-01

    This paper investigates the time series representation methods and similarity measures for sensor data feature extraction and structural damage pattern recognition. Both model-based time series representation and dimensionality reduction methods are studied to compare the effectiveness of feature extraction for damage pattern recognition. The evaluation of feature extraction methods is performed by examining the separation of feature vectors among different damage patterns and the pattern recognition success rate. In addition, the impact of similarity measures on the pattern recognition success rate and the metrics for damage localization are also investigated. The test data used in this study are from the System Identification to Monitor Civil Engineering Structures (SIMCES) Z24 Bridge damage detection tests, a rigorous instrumentation campaign that recorded the dynamic performance of a concrete box-girder bridge under progressively increasing damage scenarios. A number of progressive damage test case datasets and damage test data with different damage modalities are used. The simulation results show that both time series representation methods and similarity measures have significant impact on the pattern recognition success rate. PMID:24191136

  5. Structural similarities and differences between the human and the mouse pancreas

    Dolenšek, Jurij; Rupnik, Marjan Slak; Stožer, Andraž

    2015-01-01

    Mice remain the most studied animal model in pancreas research. Since the findings of this research are typically extrapolated to humans, it is important to understand both similarities and differences between the 2 species. Beside the apparent difference in size and macroscopic organization of the organ in the 2 species, there are a number of less evident and only recently described differences in organization of the acinar and ductal exocrine tissue, as well as in the distribution, composition, and architecture of the endocrine islets of Langerhans. Furthermore, the differences in arterial, venous, and lymphatic vessels, as well as innervation are potentially important. In this article, the structure of the human and the mouse pancreas, together with the similarities and differences between them are reviewed in detail in the light of conceivable repercussions for basic research and clinical application. PMID:26030186

  6. Shared memories reveal shared structure in neural activity across individuals

    Chen, J.; Leong, Y.C.; Honey, C.J.; Yong, C.H.; Norman, K.A.; Hasson, U.

    2016-01-01

    Our lives revolve around sharing experiences and memories with others. When different people recount the same events, how similar are their underlying neural representations? Participants viewed a fifty-minute movie, then verbally described the events during functional MRI, producing unguided detailed descriptions lasting up to forty minutes. As each person spoke, event-specific spatial patterns were reinstated in default-network, medial-temporal, and high-level visual areas. Individual event patterns were both highly discriminable from one another and similar between people, suggesting consistent spatial organization. In many high-order areas, patterns were more similar between people recalling the same event than between recall and perception, indicating systematic reshaping of percept into memory. These results reveal the existence of a common spatial organization for memories in high-level cortical areas, where encoded information is largely abstracted beyond sensory constraints; and that neural patterns during perception are altered systematically across people into shared memory representations for real-life events. PMID:27918531

  7. Self-similar spectral structures and edge-locking hierarchy in open-boundary spin chains

    Haque, Masudul

    2010-01-01

    For an anisotropic Heisenberg (XXZ) spin chain, we show that an open boundary induces a series of approximately self-similar features at different energy scales, high up in the eigenvalue spectrum. We present a nonequilibrium phenomenon related to this fractal structure, involving states in which a connected block near the edge is polarized oppositely to the rest of the chain. We show that such oppositely polarized blocks can be 'locked' to the edge of the spin chain and that there is a hierarchy of edge-locking effects at various orders of the anisotropy. The phenomenon enables dramatic control of quantum-state transmission and magnetization control.

  8. Revealing the hidden structural phases of FeRh

    Kim, Jinwoong; Ramesh, R.; Kioussis, Nicholas

    2016-11-01

    Ab initio electronic structure calculations reveal that tetragonal distortion has a dramatic effect on the relative stability of the various magnetic structures (C-, A-, G-, A'-AFM, and FM) of FeRh giving rise to a wide range of novel stable/metastable structures and magnetic phase transitions between these states. We predict that the cubic G-AFM structure, which was believed thus far to be the ground state, is metastable and that the tetragonally expanded G-AFM is the stable structure. The low energy barrier separating these states suggests phase coexistence at room temperature. We propose an A'-AFM phase to be the global ground state among all magnetic phases which arises from the strain-induced tuning of the exchange interactions. The results elucidate the underlying mechanism for the recent experimental findings of electric-field control of magnetic phase transition driven via tetragonal strain. The magnetic phase transitions open interesting prospects for exploiting strain engineering for the next-generation memory devices.

  9. Correlating the vibrational spectra of structurally related molecules: A spectroscopic measure of similarity.

    Tao, Yunwen; Zou, Wenli; Cremer, Dieter; Kraka, Elfi

    2018-03-05

    Using catastrophe theory and the concept of a mutation path, an algorithm is developed that leads to the direct correlation of the normal vibrational modes of two structurally related molecules. The mutation path is defined by weighted incremental changes in mass and geometry of the molecules in question, which are successively applied to mutate a molecule into a structurally related molecule and thus continuously converting their normal vibrational spectra from one into the other. Correlation diagrams are generated that accurately relate the normal vibrational modes to each other by utilizing mode-mode overlap criteria and resolving allowed and avoided crossings of vibrational eigenstates. The limitations of normal mode correlation, however, foster the correlation of local vibrational modes, which offer a novel vibrational measure of similarity. It will be shown how this will open new avenues for chemical studies. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  10. Diffusion Tensor Tractography Reveals Disrupted Structural Connectivity during Brain Aging

    Lin, Lan; Tian, Miao; Wang, Qi; Wu, Shuicai

    2017-10-01

    Brain aging is one of the most crucial biological processes that entail many physical, biological, chemical, and psychological changes, and also a major risk factor for most common neurodegenerative diseases. To improve the quality of life for the elderly, it is important to understand how the brain is changed during the normal aging process. We compared diffusion tensor imaging (DTI)-based brain networks in a cohort of 75 healthy old subjects by using graph theory metrics to describe the anatomical networks and connectivity patterns, and network-based statistic (NBS) analysis was used to identify pairs of regions with altered structural connectivity. The NBS analysis revealed a significant network comprising nine distinct fiber bundles linking 10 different brain regions showed altered white matter structures in young-old group compare with middle-aged group (p < .05, family-wise error-corrected). Our results might guide future studies and help to gain a better understanding of brain aging.

  11. Structural similarity causes different category-effects depending on task characteristics

    Gerlach, Christian

    2001-01-01

    difference was found on easy object decision tasks. In experiment 2 an advantage for natural objects was found during object decisions performed under degraded viewing conditions (lateralized stimulus presentation). It is argued that these findings can be accounted for by assuming that natural objects...... it is in difficult object decision tasks). However, when viewing conditions are degraded and performance tends to depend on global shape information (carried by low spatial frequency components), natural objects may fare better than artefacts because the global shape of natural objects reveals more of their identity......It has been suggested that category-specific impairments for natural objects may reflect that natural objects are more globally visually similar than artefacts and therefore more difficult to recognize following brain damage [Aphasiology 13 (1992) 169]. This account has been challenged...

  12. Transcriptional similarity in couples reveals the impact of shared environment and lifestyle on gene regulation through modified cytosines

    Ke Tang

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Gene expression is a complex and quantitative trait that is influenced by both genetic and non-genetic regulators including environmental factors. Evaluating the contribution of environment to gene expression regulation and identifying which genes are more likely to be influenced by environmental factors are important for understanding human complex traits. We hypothesize that by living together as couples, there can be commonly co-regulated genes that may reflect the shared living environment (e.g., diet, indoor air pollutants, behavioral lifestyle. The lymphoblastoid cell lines (LCLs derived from unrelated couples of African ancestry (YRI, Yoruba people from Ibadan, Nigeria from the International HapMap Project provided a unique model for us to characterize gene expression pattern in couples by comparing gene expression levels between husbands and wives. Strikingly, 778 genes were found to show much smaller variances in couples than random pairs of individuals at a false discovery rate (FDR of 5%. Since genetic variation between unrelated family members in a general population is expected to be the same assuming a random-mating society, non-genetic factors (e.g., epigenetic systems are more likely to be the mediators for the observed transcriptional similarity in couples. We thus evaluated the contribution of modified cytosines to those genes showing transcriptional similarity in couples as well as the relationships these CpG sites with other gene regulatory elements, such as transcription factor binding sites (TFBS. Our findings suggested that transcriptional similarity in couples likely reflected shared common environment partially mediated through cytosine modifications.

  13. Neighborhood Structural Similarity Mapping for the Classification of Masses in Mammograms.

    Rabidas, Rinku; Midya, Abhishek; Chakraborty, Jayasree

    2018-05-01

    In this paper, two novel feature extraction methods, using neighborhood structural similarity (NSS), are proposed for the characterization of mammographic masses as benign or malignant. Since gray-level distribution of pixels is different in benign and malignant masses, more regular and homogeneous patterns are visible in benign masses compared to malignant masses; the proposed method exploits the similarity between neighboring regions of masses by designing two new features, namely, NSS-I and NSS-II, which capture global similarity at different scales. Complementary to these global features, uniform local binary patterns are computed to enhance the classification efficiency by combining with the proposed features. The performance of the features are evaluated using the images from the mini-mammographic image analysis society (mini-MIAS) and digital database for screening mammography (DDSM) databases, where a tenfold cross-validation technique is incorporated with Fisher linear discriminant analysis, after selecting the optimal set of features using stepwise logistic regression method. The best area under the receiver operating characteristic curve of 0.98 with an accuracy of is achieved with the mini-MIAS database, while the same for the DDSM database is 0.93 with accuracy .

  14. From SNOMED CT to Uberon: Transferability of evaluation methodology between similarly structured ontologies.

    Elhanan, Gai; Ochs, Christopher; Mejino, Jose L V; Liu, Hao; Mungall, Christopher J; Perl, Yehoshua

    2017-06-01

    To examine whether disjoint partial-area taxonomy, a semantically-based evaluation methodology that has been successfully tested in SNOMED CT, will perform with similar effectiveness on Uberon, an anatomical ontology that belongs to a structurally similar family of ontologies as SNOMED CT. A disjoint partial-area taxonomy was generated for Uberon. One hundred randomly selected test concepts that overlap between partial-areas were matched to a same size control sample of non-overlapping concepts. The samples were blindly inspected for non-critical issues and presumptive errors first by a general domain expert whose results were then confirmed or rejected by a highly experienced anatomical ontology domain expert. Reported issues were subsequently reviewed by Uberon's curators. Overlapping concepts in Uberon's disjoint partial-area taxonomy exhibited a significantly higher rate of all issues. Clear-cut presumptive errors trended similarly but did not reach statistical significance. A sub-analysis of overlapping concepts with three or more relationship types indicated a much higher rate of issues. Overlapping concepts from Uberon's disjoint abstraction network are quite likely (up to 28.9%) to exhibit issues. The results suggest that the methodology can transfer well between same family ontologies. Although Uberon exhibited relatively few overlapping concepts, the methodology can be combined with other semantic indicators to expand the process to other concepts within the ontology that will generate high yields of discovered issues. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Analysis of network motifs in cellular regulation: Structural similarities, input-output relations and signal integration.

    Straube, Ronny

    2017-12-01

    Much of the complexity of regulatory networks derives from the necessity to integrate multiple signals and to avoid malfunction due to cross-talk or harmful perturbations. Hence, one may expect that the input-output behavior of larger networks is not necessarily more complex than that of smaller network motifs which suggests that both can, under certain conditions, be described by similar equations. In this review, we illustrate this approach by discussing the similarities that exist in the steady state descriptions of a simple bimolecular reaction, covalent modification cycles and bacterial two-component systems. Interestingly, in all three systems fundamental input-output characteristics such as thresholds, ultrasensitivity or concentration robustness are described by structurally similar equations. Depending on the system the meaning of the parameters can differ ranging from protein concentrations and affinity constants to complex parameter combinations which allows for a quantitative understanding of signal integration in these systems. We argue that this approach may also be extended to larger regulatory networks. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Wake structure and similar behavior of wake profiles downstream of a plunging airfoil

    Ali R. DAVARI

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Very limited attention has already been paid to the velocity behavior in the wake region in unsteady aerodynamic problems. A series of tests has been performed on a flapping airfoil in a subsonic wind tunnel to study the wake structure for different sets of mean angle of attack, plunging amplitude and reduced frequency. In this study, the velocity profiles in the wake for various oscillation parameters have been measured using a wide shoulder rake, especially designed for the present experiments. The airfoil under consideration was a critical section of a 660 kW wind turbine. The results show that for a flapping airfoil the wake structure can be of drag producing type, thrust producing or neutral, depending on the mean angle of attack, oscillation amplitude and reduced frequency. In a thrust producing wake, a high-momentum high-velocity jet flow is formed in the core region of the wake instead of the conventional low-momentum flow. As a result, the drag force normally experienced by the body due to the momentum deficit would be replaced by a thrust force. According to the results, the momentum loss in the wake decreases as the reduced frequency increases. The thrust producing wake pattern for the flapping airfoil has been observed for sufficiently low angles of attack in the absence of the viscous effects. This phenomenon has also been observed for either high oscillation amplitudes or high reduced frequencies. According to the results, for different reduced frequencies and plunging amplitudes, such that the product of them be a constant, the velocity profiles exhibit similar behavior and coalesce on each other. This similarity parameter works excellently at small angles of attack. However, at near stall boundaries, the similarity is not as evident as before.

  17. Quantitative mass spectrometry analysis reveals similar substrate consensus motif for human Mps1 kinase and Plk1.

    Zhen Dou

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Members of the Mps1 kinase family play an essential and evolutionarily conserved role in the spindle assembly checkpoint (SAC, a surveillance mechanism that ensures accurate chromosome segregation during mitosis. Human Mps1 (hMps1 is highly phosphorylated during mitosis and many phosphorylation sites have been identified. However, the upstream kinases responsible for these phosphorylations are not presently known. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here, we identify 29 in vivo phosphorylation sites in hMps1. While in vivo analyses indicate that Aurora B and hMps1 activity are required for mitotic hyper-phosphorylation of hMps1, in vitro kinase assays show that Cdk1, MAPK, Plk1 and hMps1 itself can directly phosphorylate hMps1. Although Aurora B poorly phosphorylates hMps1 in vitro, it positively regulates the localization of Mps1 to kinetochores in vivo. Most importantly, quantitative mass spectrometry analysis demonstrates that at least 12 sites within hMps1 can be attributed to autophosphorylation. Remarkably, these hMps1 autophosphorylation sites closely resemble the consensus motif of Plk1, demonstrating that these two mitotic kinases share a similar substrate consensus. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: hMps1 kinase is regulated by Aurora B kinase and its autophosphorylation. Analysis on hMps1 autophosphorylation sites demonstrates that hMps1 has a substrate preference similar to Plk1 kinase.

  18. Community genetics reveal elevated levels of sympatric gene flow among morphologically similar but not among morphologically dissimilar species of Lake Victoria cichlid fish

    Konijnendijk, N.; Joyce, D.A.; Mrosso, H.D.J.; Egas, M.; Seehausen, O.

    2011-01-01

    We examined genetic structure among five species of Lake Victoria haplochromine cichlids in four island communities, using a full factorial sampling design that compared genetic differentiation between pairs of species and populations of varying morphological similarity and geographical proximity.

  19. Protein profiling reveals inter-individual protein homogeneity of arachnoid cyst fluid and high qualitative similarity to cerebrospinal fluid

    Berle Magnus

    2011-05-01

    the majority of abundant proteins in AC fluid also can be found in CSF. Compared to plasma, as many as 104 proteins in AC were not found in the list of 3017 plasma proteins. Conclusions Based on the protein content of AC fluid, our data indicate that temporal AC is a homogenous condition, pointing towards a similar AC filling mechanism for the 14 patients examined. Most of the proteins identified in AC fluid have been identified in CSF, indicating high similarity in the qualitative protein content of AC to CSF, whereas this was not the case between AC and plasma. This indicates that AC is filled with a liquid similar to CSF. As far as we know, this is the first proteomics study that explores the AC fluid proteome.

  20. Development of scaffold-free elastic cartilaginous constructs with structural similarities to auricular cartilage.

    Giardini-Rosa, Renata; Joazeiro, Paulo P; Thomas, Kathryn; Collavino, Kristina; Weber, Joanna; Waldman, Stephen D

    2014-03-01

    External ear reconstruction with autologous cartilage still remains one of the most difficult problems in the fields of plastic and reconstructive surgery. As the absence of tissue vascularization limits the ability to stimulate new tissue growth, relatively few surgical approaches are currently available (alloplastic implants or sculpted autologous cartilage grafts) to repair or reconstruct the auricle (or pinna) as a result of traumatic loss or congenital absence (e.g., microtia). Alternatively, tissue engineering can offer the potential to grow autogenous cartilage suitable for implantation. While tissue-engineered auricle cartilage constructs can be created, a substantial number of cells are required to generate sufficient quantities of tissue for reconstruction. Similarly, as routine cell expansion can elicit negative effects on chondrocyte function, we have developed an approach to generate large-sized engineered auricle constructs (≥3 cm(2)) directly from a small population of donor cells (20,000-40,000 cells/construct). Using rabbit donor cells, the developed bioreactor-cultivated constructs adopted structural-like characteristics similar to native auricular cartilage, including the development of distinct cartilaginous and perichondrium-like regions. Both alterations in media composition and seeding density had profound effects on the formation of engineered elastic tissue constructs in terms of cellularity, extracellular matrix accumulation, and tissue structure. Higher seeding densities and media containing sodium bicarbonate produced tissue constructs that were closer to the native tissue in terms of structure and composition. Future studies will be aimed at improving the accumulation of specific tissue constituents and determining the clinical effectiveness of this approach using a reconstructive animal model.

  1. Similarities and differences between the brain networks underlying allocentric and egocentric spatial learning in rat revealed by cytochrome oxidase histochemistry.

    Rubio, S; Begega, A; Méndez, M; Méndez-López, M; Arias, J L

    2012-10-25

    The involvement of different brain regions in place- and response-learning was examined using a water cross-maze. Rats were trained to find the goal from the initial arm by turning left at the choice point (egocentric strategy) or by using environmental cues (allocentric strategy). Although different strategies were required, the same maze and learning conditions were used. Using cytochrome oxidase histochemistry as a marker of cellular activity, the function of the 13 diverse cortical and subcortical regions was assessed in rats performing these two tasks. Our results show that allocentric learning depends on the recruitment of a large functional network, which includes the hippocampal CA3, dentate gyrus, medial mammillary nucleus and supramammillary nucleus. Along with the striatum, these last three structures are also related to egocentric spatial learning. The present study provides evidence for the contribution of these regions to spatial navigation and supports a possible functional interaction between the two memory systems, as their structural convergence may facilitate functional cooperation in the behaviours guided by more than one strategy. In summary, it can be argued that spatial learning is based on dynamic functional systems in which the interaction of brain regions is modulated by task requirements. Copyright © 2012 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Wetland Microtopographic Structure is Revealed with Terrestrial Laser Scanning

    Diamond, J.; Stovall, A. E.; Mclaughlin, D. L.; Slesak, R.

    2017-12-01

    Wetland microtopographic structure and its function has been the subject of research for decades, and several investigations suggest that microtopography is generated by autogenic ecohydrologic processes. But due to the difficulty of capturing the true spatial variability of wetland microtopography, many of the hypotheses for self-organization have remained elusive to test. We employ a novel method of Terrestrial Laser Scanning (TLS) that reveals an unprecedented high-resolution (structure of wetland microtopography in 10 black ash (Fraxinus nigra) stands of northern Minnesota, USA. Here we present the first efforts to synthesize this information and show that TLS provides a good representation of real microtopographic structure, where TLS accurately measured hummock height, but occlusion of low points led to a slight negative bias. We further show that TLS can accurately locate microtopographic high points (hummocks), as well as estimate their height and area. Using these new data, we estimate distributions in both microtopographic elevation and hummock area in each wetland and relate these to monitored hydrologic regime; in doing so, we test hypotheses linking emergent microtopographic patterns to putative hydrologic controls. Finally, we discuss future efforts to enumerate consequent influences of microtopography on wetland systems (soil properties and vegetation composition).

  3. Temporal-pattern similarity analysis reveals the beneficial and detrimental effects of context reinstatement on human memory.

    Staudigl, Tobias; Vollmar, Christian; Noachtar, Soheyl; Hanslmayr, Simon

    2015-04-01

    A powerful force in human memory is the context in which memories are encoded (Tulving and Thomson, 1973). Several studies suggest that the reinstatement of neural encoding patterns is beneficial for memory retrieval (Manning et al., 2011; Staresina et al., 2012; Jafarpour et al., 2014). However, reinstatement of the original encoding context is not always helpful, for instance, when retrieving a memory in a different contextual situation (Smith and Vela, 2001). It is an open question whether such context-dependent memory effects can be captured by the reinstatement of neural patterns. We investigated this question by applying temporal and spatial pattern similarity analysis in MEG and intracranial EEG in a context-match paradigm. Items (words) were tagged by individual dynamic context stimuli (movies). The results show that beta oscillatory phase in visual regions and the parahippocampal cortex tracks the incidental reinstatement of individual context trajectories on a single-trial level. Crucially, memory benefitted from reinstatement when the encoding and retrieval contexts matched but suffered from reinstatement when the contexts did not match. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/355373-12$15.00/0.

  4. Virtual cranial endocast of the oldest giant panda ( Ailuropoda microta) reveals great similarity to that of its extant relative

    Dong, Wei

    2008-11-01

    Recent development of computed tomography and three-dimensional visualization techniques has enabled the non-destructive inspection of the endocast morphology of fossil neurocranium, the basic material for paleoneurological study. A virtual cranial endocast was reconstructed based on the first skull of the oldest giant panda, Ailuropoda microta, discovered recently and dated at more than 2 Myr (million years) ago. It was compared with that of the extant giant panda ( A. melanoleuca) and that of the polar bear ( Ursus maritimus), as well as CT slices of the late Pleistocene A. baconi. The overall endocast morphology of A. microta is more similar to that of A. baconi and A. melanoleuca than to that of U. maritimus. The absolute endocast size is the smallest in A. microta, largest in A. baconi, and intermediate in A. melanoleuca. However, the proportion of cerebral volume to total endocast size is very close to each other between the oldest and extant giant panda, as well as the sulcal length per unit area of cerebral endocast surface.

  5. Nanotoxicity comparison of four amphiphilic polymeric micelles with similar hydrophilic or hydrophobic structure.

    Zhao, Bo; Wang, Xue-Qing; Wang, Xiao-You; Zhang, Hua; Dai, Wen-Bing; Wang, Jun; Zhong, Zhen-Lin; Wu, Hou-Nan; Zhang, Qiang

    2013-10-03

    Nanocarriers represent an attractive means of drug delivery, but their biosafety must be established before their use in clinical research. Four kinds of amphiphilic polymeric (PEG-PG-PCL, PEEP-PCL, PEG-PCL and PEG-DSPE) micelles with similar hydrophilic or hydrophobic structure were prepared and their in vitro and in vivo safety were evaluated and compared. In vitro nanotoxicity evaluations included assessments of cell morphology, cell volume, inflammatory effects, cytotoxicity, apoptosis and membrane fluidity. An umbilical vein cell line (Eahy.926) and a kind of macrophages (J774.A1) were used as cell models considering that intravenous route is dominant for micelle delivery systems. In vivo analyses included complete blood count, lymphocyte subset analysis, detection of plasma inflammatory factors and histological observations of major organs after intravenous administration to KM mice. All the micelles enhanced inflammatory molecules in J774.A1 cells, likely resulting from the increased ROS levels. PEG-PG-PCL and PEEP-PCL micelles were found to increase the J774.A1 cell volume. This likely correlated with the size of PEG-PG-PCL micelles and the polyphosphoester structure in PEEP-PCL. PEG-DSPE micelles inhibited the growth of Eahy.926 cells via inducing apoptosis. This might relate to the structure of DSPE, which is a type of phospholipid and has good affinity with cell membrane. No evidence was found for cell membrane changes after treatment with these micelles for 24 h. In the in vivo study, during 8 days of 4 time injection, each of the four nanocarriers altered the hematic phase differently without changes in inflammatory factors or pathological changes in target organs. These results demonstrate that the micelles investigated exhibit diverse nanotoxicity correlated with their structures, their biosafety is different in different cell model, and there is no in vitro and in vivo correlation found. We believe that this study will certainly provide more

  6. Structural and functional similarities between osmotin from Nicotiana tabacum seeds and human adiponectin.

    Miele, Marco; Costantini, Susan; Colonna, Giovanni

    2011-02-02

    Osmotin, a plant protein, specifically binds a seven transmembrane domain receptor-like protein to exert its biological activity via a RAS2/cAMP signaling pathway. The receptor protein is encoded in the gene ORE20/PHO36 and the mammalian homolog of PHO36 is a receptor for the human hormone adiponectin (ADIPOR1). Moreover it is known that the osmotin domain I can be overlapped to the β-barrel domain of adiponectin. Therefore, these observations and some already existing structural and biological data open a window on a possible use of the osmotin or of its derivative as adiponectin agonist. We have modelled the three-dimensional structure of the adiponectin trimer (ADIPOQ), and two ADIPOR1 and PHO36 receptors. Moreover, we have also modelled the following complexes: ADIPOQ/ADIPOR1, osmotin/PHO36 and osmotin/ADIPOR1. We have then shown the structural determinants of these interactions and their physico-chemical features and analyzed the related interaction residues involved in the formation of the complexes. The stability of the modelled structures and their complexes was always evaluated and controlled by molecular dynamics. On the basis of these results a 9 residues osmotin peptide was selected and its interaction with ADIPOR1 and PHO36 was modelled and analysed in term of energetic stability by molecular dynamics. To confirm in vivo the molecular modelling data, osmotin has been purified from nicotiana tabacum seeds and its nine residues peptide synthesized. We have used cultured human synovial fibroblasts that respond to adiponectin by increasing the expression of IL-6, TNF-alpha and IL-1beta via ADIPOR1. The biological effect on fibroblasts of osmotin and its peptide derivative has been found similar to that of adiponectin confirming the results found in silico.

  7. A hybrid algorithm for selecting head-related transfer function based on similarity of anthropometric structures

    Zeng, Xiang-Yang; Wang, Shu-Guang; Gao, Li-Ping

    2010-09-01

    As the basic data for virtual auditory technology, head-related transfer function (HRTF) has many applications in the areas of room acoustic modeling, spatial hearing and multimedia. How to individualize HRTF fast and effectively has become an opening problem at present. Based on the similarity and relativity of anthropometric structures, a hybrid HRTF customization algorithm, which has combined the method of principal component analysis (PCA), multiple linear regression (MLR) and database matching (DM), has been presented in this paper. The HRTFs selected by both the best match and the worst match have been applied into obtaining binaurally auralized sounds, which are then used for subjective listening experiments and the results are compared. For the area in the horizontal plane, the localization results have shown that the selection of HRTFs can enhance the localization accuracy and can also abate the problem of front-back confusion.

  8. Structural similarities between the tradition of moral philosophy and Durkheim’s social theory

    Ana Marta González

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The first sociological theories are indebted to Enlightenment philosophy of history, which first appeared to provide a framework of meaning for moral action once moral theory had renounced the metaphysical commitments of early modern moral philosophy. While defending the autonomy of sociology from philosophy, Durkheim prescribed a specific task for sociological thought, namely: develop a moral science which, by keeping together the two features with which moral facts appear before conscience —solidarity and coercion— could account for the moral sense of the division of labour, a phenomenon previously considered almost a natural process. The purpose of this article is to show how Durkheim’s approach makes room for us to establish a structural similarity between sociological analysis and the perspective of mutual obligations characteristic of the moral philosophical tradition.

  9. Rapid discovery of peptide capture candidates with demonstrated specificity for structurally similar toxins

    Sarkes, Deborah A.; Hurley, Margaret M.; Coppock, Matthew B.; Farrell, Mikella E.; Pellegrino, Paul M.; Stratis-Cullum, Dimitra N.

    2016-05-01

    Peptides have emerged as viable alternatives to antibodies for molecular-based sensing due to their similarity in recognition ability despite their relative structural simplicity. Various methods for peptide capture reagent discovery exist, including phage display, yeast display, and bacterial display. One of the primary advantages of peptide discovery by bacterial display technology is the speed to candidate peptide capture agent, due to both rapid growth of bacteria and direct utilization of the sorted cells displaying each individual peptide for the subsequent round of biopanning. We have previously isolated peptide affinity reagents towards protective antigen of Bacillus anthracis using a commercially available automated magnetic sorting platform with improved enrichment as compared to manual magnetic sorting. In this work, we focus on adapting our automated biopanning method to a more challenging sort, to demonstrate the specificity possible with peptide capture agents. This was achieved using non-toxic, recombinant variants of ricin and abrin, RiVax and abrax, respectively, which are structurally similar Type II ribosomal inactivating proteins with significant sequence homology. After only two rounds of biopanning, enrichment of peptide capture candidates binding abrax but not RiVax was achieved as demonstrated by Fluorescence Activated Cell Sorting (FACS) studies. Further sorting optimization included negative sorting against RiVax, proper selection of autoMACS programs for specific sorting rounds, and using freshly made buffer and freshly thawed protein target for each round of biopanning for continued enrichment over all four rounds. Most of the resulting candidates from biopanning for abrax binding peptides were able to bind abrax but not RiVax, demonstrating that short peptide sequences can be highly specific even at this early discovery stage.

  10. Earthworm coelomocyte extracellular traps: structural and functional similarities with neutrophil NETs.

    Homa, Joanna

    2018-03-01

    Invertebrate immunity is associated with natural mechanisms that include cellular and humoral elements, similar to those that play a role in vertebrate innate immune responses. Formation of extracellular traps (ETs) is a newly discovered mechanism to combat pathogens, operating not only in vertebrate leucocytes but also in invertebrate immune cells. The ET components include extracellular DNA (exDNA), antimicrobial proteins and histones. Formation of mammalian ETs depends on enzymes such as neutrophil elastase, myeloperoxidase, the citrullination of histones and protease activity. It was confirmed that coelomocytes-immunocompetent cells of the earthworm Eisenia andrei-are also able to release ETs in a protease-dependent manner, dependent or independent of the formation of reactive oxygen species and rearrangement of the cell cytoskeleton. Similar to vertebrate leukocytes (e.g., neutrophil), coelomocytes are responsible for many immune functions like phagocytosis, cytotoxicity and secretion of humoral factors. ETs formed by coelomocyte analogues to neutrophil ETs consist of exDNA, histone H3 and attached to these structures proteins, e.g., heat shock proteins HSP27. The latter fact confirms that mechanisms of ET release are conserved in evolution. The study on Annelida adds this animal group to the list of invertebrates capable of ET release, but most importantly provides insides into innate mechanisms of ET formation in lower animal taxa.

  11. Complex overlapping concepts: An effective auditing methodology for families of similarly structured BioPortal ontologies.

    Zheng, Ling; Chen, Yan; Elhanan, Gai; Perl, Yehoshua; Geller, James; Ochs, Christopher

    2018-05-28

    In previous research, we have demonstrated for a number of ontologies that structurally complex concepts (for different definitions of "complex") in an ontology are more likely to exhibit errors than other concepts. Thus, such complex concepts often become fertile ground for quality assurance (QA) in ontologies. They should be audited first. One example of complex concepts is given by "overlapping concepts" (to be defined below.) Historically, a different auditing methodology had to be developed for every single ontology. For better scalability and efficiency, it is desirable to identify family-wide QA methodologies. Each such methodology would be applicable to a whole family of similar ontologies. In past research, we had divided the 685 ontologies of BioPortal into families of structurally similar ontologies. We showed for four ontologies of the same large family in BioPortal that "overlapping concepts" are indeed statistically significantly more likely to exhibit errors. In order to make an authoritative statement concerning the success of "overlapping concepts" as a methodology for a whole family of similar ontologies (or of large subhierarchies of ontologies), it is necessary to show that "overlapping concepts" have a higher likelihood of errors for six out of six ontologies of the family. In this paper, we are demonstrating for two more ontologies that "overlapping concepts" can successfully predict groups of concepts with a higher error rate than concepts from a control group. The fifth ontology is the Neoplasm subhierarchy of the National Cancer Institute thesaurus (NCIt). The sixth ontology is the Infectious Disease subhierarchy of SNOMED CT. We demonstrate quality assurance results for both of them. Furthermore, in this paper we observe two novel, important, and useful phenomena during quality assurance of "overlapping concepts." First, an erroneous "overlapping concept" can help with discovering other erroneous "non-overlapping concepts" in its vicinity

  12. A SNP based high-density linkage map of Apis cerana reveals a high recombination rate similar to Apis mellifera.

    Yuan Yuan Shi

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The Eastern honey bee, Apis cerana Fabricius, is distributed in southern and eastern Asia, from India and China to Korea and Japan and southeast to the Moluccas. This species is also widely kept for honey production besides Apis mellifera. Apis cerana is also a model organism for studying social behavior, caste determination, mating biology, sexual selection, and host-parasite interactions. Few resources are available for molecular research in this species, and a linkage map was never constructed. A linkage map is a prerequisite for quantitative trait loci mapping and for analyzing genome structure. We used the Chinese honey bee, Apis cerana cerana to construct the first linkage map in the Eastern honey bee. RESULTS: F2 workers (N = 103 were genotyped for 126,990 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs. After filtering low quality and those not passing the Mendel test, we obtained 3,000 SNPs, 1,535 of these were informative and used to construct a linkage map. The preliminary map contains 19 linkage groups, we then mapped the 19 linkage groups to 16 chromosomes by comparing the markers to the genome of A. mellfiera. The final map contains 16 linkage groups with a total of 1,535 markers. The total genetic distance is 3,942.7 centimorgans (cM with the largest linkage group (180 loci measuring 574.5 cM. Average marker interval for all markers across the 16 linkage groups is 2.6 cM. CONCLUSION: We constructed a high density linkage map for A. c. cerana with 1,535 markers. Because the map is based on SNP markers, it will enable easier and faster genotyping assays than randomly amplified polymorphic DNA or microsatellite based maps used in A. mellifera.

  13. Towards a chromatographic similarity index to establish localised quantitative structure-retention relationships for retention prediction. II Use of Tanimoto similarity index in ion chromatography.

    Park, Soo Hyun; Talebi, Mohammad; Amos, Ruth I J; Tyteca, Eva; Haddad, Paul R; Szucs, Roman; Pohl, Christopher A; Dolan, John W

    2017-11-10

    Quantitative Structure-Retention Relationships (QSRR) are used to predict retention times of compounds based only on their chemical structures encoded by molecular descriptors. The main concern in QSRR modelling is to build models with high predictive power, allowing reliable retention prediction for the unknown compounds across the chromatographic space. With the aim of enhancing the prediction power of the models, in this work, our previously proposed QSRR modelling approach called "federation of local models" is extended in ion chromatography to predict retention times of unknown ions, where a local model for each target ion (unknown) is created using only structurally similar ions from the dataset. A Tanimoto similarity (TS) score was utilised as a measure of structural similarity and training sets were developed by including ions that were similar to the target ion, as defined by a threshold value. The prediction of retention parameters (a- and b-values) in the linear solvent strength (LSS) model in ion chromatography, log k=a - blog[eluent], allows the prediction of retention times under all eluent concentrations. The QSRR models for a- and b-values were developed by a genetic algorithm-partial least squares method using the retention data of inorganic and small organic anions and larger organic cations (molecular mass up to 507) on four Thermo Fisher Scientific columns (AS20, AS19, AS11HC and CS17). The corresponding predicted retention times were calculated by fitting the predicted a- and b-values of the models into the LSS model equation. The predicted retention times were also plotted against the experimental values to evaluate the goodness of fit and the predictive power of the models. The application of a TS threshold of 0.6 was found to successfully produce predictive and reliable QSRR models (Q ext(F2) 2 >0.8 and Mean Absolute Error<0.1), and hence accurate retention time predictions with an average Mean Absolute Error of 0.2min. Crown Copyright

  14. Memory functions reveal structural properties of gene regulatory networks

    Perez-Carrasco, Ruben

    2018-01-01

    Gene regulatory networks (GRNs) control cellular function and decision making during tissue development and homeostasis. Mathematical tools based on dynamical systems theory are often used to model these networks, but the size and complexity of these models mean that their behaviour is not always intuitive and the underlying mechanisms can be difficult to decipher. For this reason, methods that simplify and aid exploration of complex networks are necessary. To this end we develop a broadly applicable form of the Zwanzig-Mori projection. By first converting a thermodynamic state ensemble model of gene regulation into mass action reactions we derive a general method that produces a set of time evolution equations for a subset of components of a network. The influence of the rest of the network, the bulk, is captured by memory functions that describe how the subnetwork reacts to its own past state via components in the bulk. These memory functions provide probes of near-steady state dynamics, revealing information not easily accessible otherwise. We illustrate the method on a simple cross-repressive transcriptional motif to show that memory functions not only simplify the analysis of the subnetwork but also have a natural interpretation. We then apply the approach to a GRN from the vertebrate neural tube, a well characterised developmental transcriptional network composed of four interacting transcription factors. The memory functions reveal the function of specific links within the neural tube network and identify features of the regulatory structure that specifically increase the robustness of the network to initial conditions. Taken together, the study provides evidence that Zwanzig-Mori projections offer powerful and effective tools for simplifying and exploring the behaviour of GRNs. PMID:29470492

  15. Facilitating adverse drug event detection in pharmacovigilance databases using molecular structure similarity: application to rhabdomyolysis

    Vilar, Santiago; Harpaz, Rave; Chase, Herbert S; Costanzi, Stefano; Rabadan, Raul

    2011-01-01

    Background Adverse drug events (ADE) cause considerable harm to patients, and consequently their detection is critical for patient safety. The US Food and Drug Administration maintains an adverse event reporting system (AERS) to facilitate the detection of ADE in drugs. Various data mining approaches have been developed that use AERS to detect signals identifying associations between drugs and ADE. The signals must then be monitored further by domain experts, which is a time-consuming task. Objective To develop a new methodology that combines existing data mining algorithms with chemical information by analysis of molecular fingerprints to enhance initial ADE signals generated from AERS, and to provide a decision support mechanism to facilitate the identification of novel adverse events. Results The method achieved a significant improvement in precision in identifying known ADE, and a more than twofold signal enhancement when applied to the ADE rhabdomyolysis. The simplicity of the method assists in highlighting the etiology of the ADE by identifying structurally similar drugs. A set of drugs with strong evidence from both AERS and molecular fingerprint-based modeling is constructed for further analysis. Conclusion The results demonstrate that the proposed methodology could be used as a pharmacovigilance decision support tool to facilitate ADE detection. PMID:21946238

  16. Structural similarity-based predictions of protein interactions between HIV-1 and Homo sapiens

    Gomez Shawn M

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In the course of infection, viruses such as HIV-1 must enter a cell, travel to sites where they can hijack host machinery to transcribe their genes and translate their proteins, assemble, and then leave the cell again, all while evading the host immune system. Thus, successful infection depends on the pathogen's ability to manipulate the biological pathways and processes of the organism it infects. Interactions between HIV-encoded and human proteins provide one means by which HIV-1 can connect into cellular pathways to carry out these survival processes. Results We developed and applied a computational approach to predict interactions between HIV and human proteins based on structural similarity of 9 HIV-1 proteins to human proteins having known interactions. Using functional data from RNAi studies as a filter, we generated over 2000 interaction predictions between HIV proteins and 406 unique human proteins. Additional filtering based on Gene Ontology cellular component annotation reduced the number of predictions to 502 interactions involving 137 human proteins. We find numerous known interactions as well as novel interactions showing significant functional relevance based on supporting Gene Ontology and literature evidence. Conclusions Understanding the interplay between HIV-1 and its human host will help in understanding the viral lifecycle and the ways in which this virus is able to manipulate its host. The results shown here provide a potential set of interactions that are amenable to further experimental manipulation as well as potential targets for therapeutic intervention.

  17. Asymmetry quantification from reflectance images of orthotic patients using structural similarity metrics

    Boucher, Marc-Antoine; Watts, Nicolas; Gremillet, Frederic; Legare, Philippe; Kadoury, Samuel

    2018-02-01

    Pathologies like plantar fasciitis, a common soft tissue disorder of the foot, is frequently associated with older age, high BMI and little exercise. Like other pathologies associated with the foot, the knee or hip, foot orthoses can help the patient's posture and recent techniques allow the creation of personalized foot orthoses based on 3D foot model that are fitted with high accuracy to the foot surface. In order to assess the efficacy of the personalized orthoses on the patient's pose and balance, depth images with reflectance camera filters are acquired in order to evaluate the posture of the patient before and after the use of the orthoses. Images are analysed by clinicians to assess the region asymmetry and posture changes. However, this remains a subjective evaluation and a quantifiable measurement is required to follow patient progression. In this paper, we present a novel tool to assess and quantify the asymmetry of body regions using a color-based structural similarity metric calculated from paired regions. This provides a quantitative measure to evaluate the effect of the personalized orthoses on the patient. A user-friendly interface allows the user to select an area of the body and automatically generate a symmetry axis, along with a measure of asymmetry measuring reflectance variations from the skin. The tool was validated on 30 patients, demonstrating an 83% agreement rate compare to clinical observations.

  18. Discrimination and Measurements of Three Flavonols with Similar Structure Using Terahertz Spectroscopy and Chemometrics

    Yan, Ling; Liu, Changhong; Qu, Hao; Liu, Wei; Zhang, Yan; Yang, Jianbo; Zheng, Lei

    2018-03-01

    Terahertz (THz) technique, a recently developed spectral method, has been researched and used for the rapid discrimination and measurements of food compositions due to its low-energy and non-ionizing characteristics. In this study, THz spectroscopy combined with chemometrics has been utilized for qualitative and quantitative analysis of myricetin, quercetin, and kaempferol with concentrations of 0.025, 0.05, and 0.1 mg/mL. The qualitative discrimination was achieved by KNN, ELM, and RF models with the spectra pre-treatments. An excellent discrimination (100% CCR in the prediction set) could be achieved using the RF model. Furthermore, the quantitative analyses were performed by partial least square regression (PLSR) and least squares support vector machine (LS-SVM). Comparing to the PLSR models, the LS-SVM yielded better results with low RMSEP (0.0044, 0.0039, and 0.0048), higher Rp (0.9601, 0.9688, and 0.9359), and higher RPD (8.6272, 9.6333, and 7.9083) for myricetin, quercetin, and kaempferol, respectively. Our results demonstrate that THz spectroscopy technique is a powerful tool for identification of three flavonols with similar chemical structures and quantitative determination of their concentrations.

  19. The growth of vegetative and reproductive structures (leaves and silks) respond similarly to hydraulic cues in maize.

    Turc, Olivier; Bouteillé, Marie; Fuad-Hassan, Avan; Welcker, Claude; Tardieu, François

    2016-10-01

    The elongation of styles and stigma (silks) of maize (Zea mays) flowers is rapid (1-3 mm h(-1) ), occurs over a short period and plays a pivotal role in reproductive success in adverse environments. Silk elongation rate was measured using displacement transducers in 350 plants of eight genotypes during eight experiments with varying evaporative demand and soil water status. Measured time courses revealed that silk elongation rate closely followed changes in soil water status and evaporative demand, with day-night alternations similar to those in leaves. Day-night alternations were steeper with high than with low plant transpiration rate, manipulated via evaporative demand or by covering part of the leaf area. Half times of changes in silk elongation rate upon changes in evaporative demand or soil water status were 10-30 min, similar to those in leaves. The sensitivity of silk elongation rate to xylem water potential was genetically linked to that of leaf elongation rate. Lines greatly differed for these sensitivities. These results are consistent with a common hydraulic control of expansive growth in vegetative and reproductive structures upon changes in environmental conditions via a close connection with the xylem water potential. They have important implications for breeding, modelling and phenotyping. © 2016 INRA. New Phytologist © 2016 New Phytologist Trust.

  20. Compression-based classification of biological sequences and structures via the Universal Similarity Metric: experimental assessment

    Manzini Giovanni

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Similarity of sequences is a key mathematical notion for Classification and Phylogenetic studies in Biology. It is currently primarily handled using alignments. However, the alignment methods seem inadequate for post-genomic studies since they do not scale well with data set size and they seem to be confined only to genomic and proteomic sequences. Therefore, alignment-free similarity measures are actively pursued. Among those, USM (Universal Similarity Metric has gained prominence. It is based on the deep theory of Kolmogorov Complexity and universality is its most novel striking feature. Since it can only be approximated via data compression, USM is a methodology rather than a formula quantifying the similarity of two strings. Three approximations of USM are available, namely UCD (Universal Compression Dissimilarity, NCD (Normalized Compression Dissimilarity and CD (Compression Dissimilarity. Their applicability and robustness is tested on various data sets yielding a first massive quantitative estimate that the USM methodology and its approximations are of value. Despite the rich theory developed around USM, its experimental assessment has limitations: only a few data compressors have been tested in conjunction with USM and mostly at a qualitative level, no comparison among UCD, NCD and CD is available and no comparison of USM with existing methods, both based on alignments and not, seems to be available. Results We experimentally test the USM methodology by using 25 compressors, all three of its known approximations and six data sets of relevance to Molecular Biology. This offers the first systematic and quantitative experimental assessment of this methodology, that naturally complements the many theoretical and the preliminary experimental results available. Moreover, we compare the USM methodology both with methods based on alignments and not. We may group our experiments into two sets. The first one, performed via ROC

  1. Compression-based classification of biological sequences and structures via the Universal Similarity Metric: experimental assessment.

    Ferragina, Paolo; Giancarlo, Raffaele; Greco, Valentina; Manzini, Giovanni; Valiente, Gabriel

    2007-07-13

    Similarity of sequences is a key mathematical notion for Classification and Phylogenetic studies in Biology. It is currently primarily handled using alignments. However, the alignment methods seem inadequate for post-genomic studies since they do not scale well with data set size and they seem to be confined only to genomic and proteomic sequences. Therefore, alignment-free similarity measures are actively pursued. Among those, USM (Universal Similarity Metric) has gained prominence. It is based on the deep theory of Kolmogorov Complexity and universality is its most novel striking feature. Since it can only be approximated via data compression, USM is a methodology rather than a formula quantifying the similarity of two strings. Three approximations of USM are available, namely UCD (Universal Compression Dissimilarity), NCD (Normalized Compression Dissimilarity) and CD (Compression Dissimilarity). Their applicability and robustness is tested on various data sets yielding a first massive quantitative estimate that the USM methodology and its approximations are of value. Despite the rich theory developed around USM, its experimental assessment has limitations: only a few data compressors have been tested in conjunction with USM and mostly at a qualitative level, no comparison among UCD, NCD and CD is available and no comparison of USM with existing methods, both based on alignments and not, seems to be available. We experimentally test the USM methodology by using 25 compressors, all three of its known approximations and six data sets of relevance to Molecular Biology. This offers the first systematic and quantitative experimental assessment of this methodology, that naturally complements the many theoretical and the preliminary experimental results available. Moreover, we compare the USM methodology both with methods based on alignments and not. We may group our experiments into two sets. The first one, performed via ROC (Receiver Operating Curve) analysis, aims at

  2. Statistical universals reveal the structures and functions of human music.

    Savage, Patrick E; Brown, Steven; Sakai, Emi; Currie, Thomas E

    2015-07-21

    Music has been called "the universal language of mankind." Although contemporary theories of music evolution often invoke various musical universals, the existence of such universals has been disputed for decades and has never been empirically demonstrated. Here we combine a music-classification scheme with statistical analyses, including phylogenetic comparative methods, to examine a well-sampled global set of 304 music recordings. Our analyses reveal no absolute universals but strong support for many statistical universals that are consistent across all nine geographic regions sampled. These universals include 18 musical features that are common individually as well as a network of 10 features that are commonly associated with one another. They span not only features related to pitch and rhythm that are often cited as putative universals but also rarely cited domains including performance style and social context. These cross-cultural structural regularities of human music may relate to roles in facilitating group coordination and cohesion, as exemplified by the universal tendency to sing, play percussion instruments, and dance to simple, repetitive music in groups. Our findings highlight the need for scientists studying music evolution to expand the range of musical cultures and musical features under consideration. The statistical universals we identified represent important candidates for future investigation.

  3. Fine-scaled human genetic structure revealed by SNP microarrays.

    Xing, Jinchuan; Watkins, W Scott; Witherspoon, David J; Zhang, Yuhua; Guthery, Stephen L; Thara, Rangaswamy; Mowry, Bryan J; Bulayeva, Kazima; Weiss, Robert B; Jorde, Lynn B

    2009-05-01

    We report an analysis of more than 240,000 loci genotyped using the Affymetrix SNP microarray in 554 individuals from 27 worldwide populations in Africa, Asia, and Europe. To provide a more extensive and complete sampling of human genetic variation, we have included caste and tribal samples from two states in South India, Daghestanis from eastern Europe, and the Iban from Malaysia. Consistent with observations made by Charles Darwin, our results highlight shared variation among human populations and demonstrate that much genetic variation is geographically continuous. At the same time, principal components analyses reveal discernible genetic differentiation among almost all identified populations in our sample, and in most cases, individuals can be clearly assigned to defined populations on the basis of SNP genotypes. All individuals are accurately classified into continental groups using a model-based clustering algorithm, but between closely related populations, genetic and self-classifications conflict for some individuals. The 250K data permitted high-level resolution of genetic variation among Indian caste and tribal populations and between highland and lowland Daghestani populations. In particular, upper-caste individuals from Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh form one defined group, lower-caste individuals from these two states form another, and the tribal Irula samples form a third. Our results emphasize the correlation of genetic and geographic distances and highlight other elements, including social factors that have contributed to population structure.

  4. A structural homologue of colipase in black mamba venom revealed by NMR floating disulphide bridge analysis.

    Boisbouvier, J; Albrand, J P; Blackledge, M; Jaquinod, M; Schweitz, H; Lazdunski, M; Marion, D

    1998-01-01

    The solution structure of mamba intestinal toxin 1 (MIT1), isolated from Dendroaspis polylepis polylepis venom, has been determined. This molecule is a cysteine-rich polypeptide exhibiting no recognised family membership. Resistance to MIT1 to classical specific endoproteases produced contradictory NMR and biochemical information concerning disulphide-bridge topology. We have used distance restraints allowing ambiguous partners between S atoms in combination with NMR-derived structural information, to correctly determine the disulphide-bridge topology. The resultant solution structure of MIT1, determined to a resolution of 0.5 A, reveals an unexpectedly similar global fold with respect to colipase, a protein involved in fatty acid digestion. Colipase exhibits an analogous resistance to endoprotease activity, indicating for the first time the possible topological origins of this biochemical property. The biochemical and structural homology permitted us to propose a mechanically related digestive function for MIT1 and provides novel information concerning snake venom protein evolution. Copyright 1998 Academic Press.

  5. Lung structure and function similarities between primary ciliary dyskinesia and mild cystic fibrosis: a pilot study.

    Maglione, Marco; Montella, Silvia; Mollica, Carmine; Carnovale, Vincenzo; Iacotucci, Paola; De Gregorio, Fabiola; Tosco, Antonella; Cervasio, Mariarosaria; Raia, Valeria; Santamaria, Francesca

    2017-04-12

    Primary ciliary dyskinesia (PCD) and cystic fibrosis (CF) are increasingly compared. There are no chest magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) comparative studies of PCD and CF. We assessed clinical, functional, microbiological and MRI findings in PCD and mild CF patients in order to evaluate different expression of lung disease. Twenty PCD (15.1 years) and 20 CF subjects with mild respiratory impairment (16 years, 70% with pancreatic insufficiency) underwent MRI, spirometry, and sputum cultures when clinically stable. MRI was scored using the modified Helbich system. PCD was diagnosed later than CF (9.9 versus 0.6 years, p = 0.03), despite earlier symptoms (0.1 versus 0.6 years, p = 0.02). In the year preceding the study, patients from both groups underwent two systemic antibiotic courses (p = 0.48). MRI total scores were 11.6 ± 0.7 and 9.1 ± 1 in PCD and CF, respectively. FEV 1 and FVC Z-scores were -1.75 (range, -4.6-0.7) and -0.6 (-3.9-1.8) in PCD, and -0.9 (range, -5.4-2.3) and -0.3 (-3.4-2.5) in CF, respectively. No difference was found between lung function or structure, despite a higher MRI subscore of collapse/consolidation in PCD versus CF (1.6 ± 0.1 and 0.6 ± 0.2, p < 0.001). These findings were confirmed after data-control for diagnostic delay. Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus were more frequent in CF than in PCD (p = 0.05 and p = 0.003, respectively). MRI is a valuable radiation-free tool for comparative PCD and CF lung disease assessment. Patients with PCD may exhibit similar MRI and lung function changes as CF subjects with mild pulmonary disease. Delay in PCD diagnosis is unlikely the only determinant of similarities.

  6. Testing statistical significance scores of sequence comparison methods with structure similarity

    Leunissen Jack AM

    2006-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In the past years the Smith-Waterman sequence comparison algorithm has gained popularity due to improved implementations and rapidly increasing computing power. However, the quality and sensitivity of a database search is not only determined by the algorithm but also by the statistical significance testing for an alignment. The e-value is the most commonly used statistical validation method for sequence database searching. The CluSTr database and the Protein World database have been created using an alternative statistical significance test: a Z-score based on Monte-Carlo statistics. Several papers have described the superiority of the Z-score as compared to the e-value, using simulated data. We were interested if this could be validated when applied to existing, evolutionary related protein sequences. Results All experiments are performed on the ASTRAL SCOP database. The Smith-Waterman sequence comparison algorithm with both e-value and Z-score statistics is evaluated, using ROC, CVE and AP measures. The BLAST and FASTA algorithms are used as reference. We find that two out of three Smith-Waterman implementations with e-value are better at predicting structural similarities between proteins than the Smith-Waterman implementation with Z-score. SSEARCH especially has very high scores. Conclusion The compute intensive Z-score does not have a clear advantage over the e-value. The Smith-Waterman implementations give generally better results than their heuristic counterparts. We recommend using the SSEARCH algorithm combined with e-values for pairwise sequence comparisons.

  7. Associative Interference in Pavlovian Conditioning: A Function of Similarity Between the Interfering and Target Associative Structures

    Amundson, Jeffrey C.; Miller, Ralph R.

    2008-01-01

    Three lever-press suppression studies were conducted with water-deprived rats to investigate the role of similarity in proactive interference within first-order Pavlovian conditioning. Experiments 1a and 1b assessed the influence of stimulus complexity in proactive interference. Both experiments found greater interference when the interfering cue and target cue were composed of the same number of elements. Experiment 2 assessed the influence of context similarity in proactive interference and...

  8. The structure of KPN03535 (gi|152972051), a novel putative lipoprotein from Klebsiella pneumoniae, reveals an OB-fold

    Das, Debanu; Kozbial, Piotr; Han, Gye Won; Carlton, Dennis; Jaroszewski, Lukasz; Abdubek, Polat; Astakhova, Tamara; Axelrod, Herbert L.; Bakolitsa, Constantina; Chen, Connie; Chiu, Hsiu-Ju; Chiu, Michelle; Clayton, Thomas; Deller, Marc C.; Duan, Lian; Ellrott, Kyle; Elsliger, Marc-André; Ernst, Dustin; Farr, Carol L.; Feuerhelm, Julie; Grzechnik, Anna; Grant, Joanna C.; Jin, Kevin K.; Johnson, Hope A.; Klock, Heath E.; Knuth, Mark W.; Krishna, S. Sri; Kumar, Abhinav; Marciano, David; McMullan, Daniel; Miller, Mitchell D.; Morse, Andrew T.; Nigoghossian, Edward; Nopakun, Amanda; Okach, Linda; Oommachen, Silvya; Paulsen, Jessica; Puckett, Christina; Reyes, Ron; Rife, Christopher L.; Sefcovic, Natasha; Tien, Henry J.; Trame, Christine B.; Bedem, Henry van den; Weekes, Dana; Wooten, Tiffany; Xu, Qingping; Hodgson, Keith O.; Wooley, John; Deacon, Ashley M.; Godzik, Adam; Lesley, Scott A.; Wilson, Ian A.

    2009-01-01

    KPN03535 is a protein unique to K. pneumoniae. The crystal structure reveals that KPN03535 represents a novel variant of the OB-fold and is likely to be a DNA-binding lipoprotein. KPN03535 (gi|152972051) is a putative lipoprotein of unknown function that is secreted by Klebsiella pneumoniae MGH 78578. The crystal structure reveals that despite a lack of any detectable sequence similarity to known structures, it is a novel variant of the OB-fold and structurally similar to the bacterial Cpx-pathway protein NlpE, single-stranded DNA-binding (SSB) proteins and toxins. K. pneumoniae MGH 78578 forms part of the normal human skin, mouth and gut flora and is an opportunistic pathogen that is linked to about 8% of all hospital-acquired infections in the USA. This structure provides the foundation for further investigations into this divergent member of the OB-fold family

  9. Hartley and Itokawa: small comet and asteroid with similar morphologies and structures

    Kochemasov, G. G.

    2011-10-01

    at the convex bulge, from the antipodean side (Fig. 5). The smaller rocky asteroid Itokawa (0.5 km long, Fig. 2) is surprisingly similar in shape and structure to the icy core of Hart ley. It is also bent and rich in cross-cutting lineations o 4 direct ions marked by small holes-craters. But here they are ext inct and lack of gas -dust jets. One sees a transition from a volat ile rich comet core to an ext inct mostly rocky mass - asteroid. In both cases (comet core and as teroid) in the middle develops a smooth "wais t". The bulged convex and antipodal concave segments -hemispheres in rotating bodies require somewhat different densities of composing them masses to equilibrate angular momentum of two halves (compare with the Ea rth's hemis pheres : the eas tern continental "granitic" and wes tern Pacific "bas altic"). The near-IR images of two asteroids (Fig.6-7) confirm this. The concave and convex s ides are co mpos itionally d ifferent. In the Eros ' cas e the concave s ide is rich er in pyroxene, thus denser.

  10. Blow-up in nonlinear Schroedinger equations. II. Similarity structure of the blow-up singularity

    Rypdal, K.; Juul Rasmussen, Jens

    1986-01-01

    invariance and generalizations of the latter. This generalized "quasi-invariance" reveals the nature of the blow-up singularity and resolves an old controversy. Most of the previous work has been done on the cubic nonlinearity. We generalize the results to an arbitrary power nonlinearity....

  11. The structure of Plasmodium falciparum serine hydroxymethyltransferase reveals a novel redox switch that regulates its activities

    Chitnumsub, Penchit; Ittarat, Wanwipa; Jaruwat, Aritsara; Noytanom, Krittikar [National Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, 113 Thailand Science Park, Paholyothin Road, Klong 1, Klong Luang, Pathumthani 12120 (Thailand); Amornwatcharapong, Watcharee [Mahidol University, Bangkok (Thailand); Pornthanakasem, Wichai [National Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, 113 Thailand Science Park, Paholyothin Road, Klong 1, Klong Luang, Pathumthani 12120 (Thailand); Chaiyen, Pimchai [Mahidol University, Bangkok (Thailand); Yuthavong, Yongyuth; Leartsakulpanich, Ubolsree [National Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, 113 Thailand Science Park, Paholyothin Road, Klong 1, Klong Luang, Pathumthani 12120 (Thailand)

    2014-06-01

    The crystal structure of P. falciparum SHMT revealed snapshots of an intriguing disulfide/sulfhydryl switch controlling the functional activity. Plasmodium falciparum serine hydroxymethyltransferase (PfSHMT), an enzyme in the dTMP synthesis cycle, is an antimalarial target because inhibition of its expression or function has been shown to be lethal to the parasite. As the wild-type enzyme could not be crystallized, protein engineering of residues on the surface was carried out. The surface-engineered mutant PfSHMT-F292E was successfully crystallized and its structure was determined at 3 Å resolution. The PfSHMT-F292E structure is a good representation of PfSHMT as this variant revealed biochemical properties similar to those of the wild type. Although the overall structure of PfSHMT is similar to those of other SHMTs, unique features including the presence of two loops and a distinctive cysteine pair formed by Cys125 and Cys364 in the tetrahydrofolate (THF) substrate binding pocket were identified. These structural characteristics have never been reported in other SHMTs. Biochemical characterization and mutation analysis of these two residues confirm that they act as a disulfide/sulfhydryl switch to regulate the THF-dependent catalytic function of the enzyme. This redox switch is not present in the human enzyme, in which the cysteine pair is absent. The data reported here can be further exploited as a new strategy to specifically disrupt the activity of the parasite enzyme without interfering with the function of the human enzyme.

  12. The structure of Plasmodium falciparum serine hydroxymethyltransferase reveals a novel redox switch that regulates its activities

    Chitnumsub, Penchit; Ittarat, Wanwipa; Jaruwat, Aritsara; Noytanom, Krittikar; Amornwatcharapong, Watcharee; Pornthanakasem, Wichai; Chaiyen, Pimchai; Yuthavong, Yongyuth; Leartsakulpanich, Ubolsree

    2014-01-01

    The crystal structure of P. falciparum SHMT revealed snapshots of an intriguing disulfide/sulfhydryl switch controlling the functional activity. Plasmodium falciparum serine hydroxymethyltransferase (PfSHMT), an enzyme in the dTMP synthesis cycle, is an antimalarial target because inhibition of its expression or function has been shown to be lethal to the parasite. As the wild-type enzyme could not be crystallized, protein engineering of residues on the surface was carried out. The surface-engineered mutant PfSHMT-F292E was successfully crystallized and its structure was determined at 3 Å resolution. The PfSHMT-F292E structure is a good representation of PfSHMT as this variant revealed biochemical properties similar to those of the wild type. Although the overall structure of PfSHMT is similar to those of other SHMTs, unique features including the presence of two loops and a distinctive cysteine pair formed by Cys125 and Cys364 in the tetrahydrofolate (THF) substrate binding pocket were identified. These structural characteristics have never been reported in other SHMTs. Biochemical characterization and mutation analysis of these two residues confirm that they act as a disulfide/sulfhydryl switch to regulate the THF-dependent catalytic function of the enzyme. This redox switch is not present in the human enzyme, in which the cysteine pair is absent. The data reported here can be further exploited as a new strategy to specifically disrupt the activity of the parasite enzyme without interfering with the function of the human enzyme

  13. Structural characterization of Helicobacter pylori dethiobiotin synthetase reveals differences between family members

    Porebski, Przemyslaw J.; Klimecka, Maria; Chruszcz, Maksymilian; Nicholls, Robert A.; Murzyn, Krzysztof; Cuff, Marianne E.; Xu, Xiaohui; Cymborowski, Marcin; Murshudov, Garib N.; Savchenko, Alexei; Edwards, Aled; Minor, Wladek (MCSG); (UV); (MRC)

    2012-07-11

    Dethiobiotin synthetase (DTBS) is involved in the biosynthesis of biotin in bacteria, fungi, and plants. As humans lack this pathway, DTBS is a promising antimicrobial drug target. We determined structures of DTBS from Helicobacter pylori (hpDTBS) bound with cofactors and a substrate analog, and described its unique characteristics relative to other DTBS proteins. Comparison with bacterial DTBS orthologs revealed considerable structural differences in nucleotide recognition. The C-terminal region of DTBS proteins, which contains two nucleotide-recognition motifs, differs greatly among DTBS proteins from different species. The structure of hpDTBS revealed that this protein is unique and does not contain a C-terminal region containing one of the motifs. The single nucleotide-binding motif in hpDTBS is similar to its counterpart in GTPases; however, isothermal titration calorimetry binding studies showed that hpDTBS has a strong preference for ATP. The structural determinants of ATP specificity were assessed with X-ray crystallographic studies of hpDTBS-ATP and hpDTBS-GTP complexes. The unique mode of nucleotide recognition in hpDTBS makes this protein a good target for H. pylori-specific inhibitors of the biotin synthesis pathway.

  14. Design of compound libraries based on natural product scaffolds and protein structure similarity clustering (PSSC)

    Balamurugan, Rengarajan; Dekker, Frank J; Waldmann, Herbert; Dekker, Frans

    Recent advances in structural biology, bioinformatics and combinatorial chemistry have significantly impacted the discovery of small molecules that modulate protein functions. Natural products which have evolved to bind to proteins may serve as biologically validated starting points for the design

  15. Hurricane Inner-Core Structure as Revealed by GPS Dropwindsondes

    Leejoice, Robert

    2000-01-01

    New high-resolution information of the vertical thermodynamic and kinematic structure of the hurricane inner-core is now available from aircraft released Global Positioning System (GPS) dropwindsondes...

  16. Math Anxiety Questionnaire: Similar Latent Structure in Brazilian and German School Children

    Guilherme Wood

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Math anxiety is a relatively frequent phenomenon often related to low mathematics achievement and dyscalculia. In the present study, the German and the Brazilian versions of the Mathematics Anxiety Questionnaire (MAQ were examined. The two-dimensional structure originally reported for the German MAQ, that includes both affective and cognitive components of math anxiety was reproduced in the Brazilian version. Moreover, mathematics anxiety also was found to increase with age in both populations and was particularly associated with basic numeric competencies and more complex arithmetics. The present results suggest that mathematics anxiety as measured by the MAQ presents the same internal structure in culturally very different populations.

  17. Panarchy: discontinuities reval similarities in the dynamic system structure of ecological and social systems

    Debates on the organization, structure and dynamics of ecosystems across scales of space and time have waxed and waned in the literature for a century. From successional theory to ecosystem theories of resilience and robustness, from hierarchy to ascendency to panarchy theory, e...

  18. The potential indirect effects among plants via shared hummingbird pollinators are structured by phenotypic similarity.

    Bergamo, Pedro Joaquim; Wolowski, Marina; Maruyama, Pietro Kiyoshi; Vizentin-Bugoni, Jeferson; Carvalheiro, Luísa G; Sazima, Marlies

    2017-07-01

    Plant species within communities may overlap in pollinators' use and influence visitation patterns of shared pollinators, potentially engaging in indirect interactions (e.g., facilitation or competition). While several studies have explored the mechanisms regulating insect-pollination networks, there is a lack of studies on bird-pollination systems, particularly in species-rich tropical areas. Here, we evaluated if phenotypic similarity, resource availability (floral abundance), evolutionary relatedness and flowering phenology affect the potential for indirect effects via shared pollinators in hummingbird-pollinated plant species within four communities in the Brazilian Atlantic forest. Among the evaluated factors, phenotypic similarity (corolla length and anther height) was the most important variable, while resource availability (floral abundance) had a secondary importance. On the other hand, evolutionary relatedness and flowering phenology were less important, which altogether highlights the relevance of convergent evolution and that the contribution of a plant to the diet of the pollinators of another plant is independent of the level of temporal overlap in flowering in this tropical system. Interestingly, our findings contrast with results from multiple insect-pollinated plant communities, mostly from temperate regions, in which floral abundance was the most important driver, followed by evolutionary relatedness and phenotypic similarity. We propose that these contrasting results are due to high level of specialization inherent to tropical hummingbird-pollination systems. Moreover, our results demonstrated that factors defining linkage rules of plant-hummingbird networks also determinate plant-plant potential indirect effects. Future studies are needed to test if these findings can be generalized to other highly specialized systems. Overall, our results have important implications for the understanding of ecological processes due resource sharing in

  19. Diverse binding site structures revealed in homology models of polyreactive immunoglobulins

    Ramsland, Paul A.; Guddat, Luke W.; Edmundson, Allen B.; Raison, Robert L.

    1997-09-01

    We describe here computer-assisted homology models of the combiningsite structure of three polyreactive immunoglobulins. Template-based modelsof Fv (VL-VH) fragments were derived forthe surface IgM expressed by the malignant CD5 positive B cells from threepatients with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL). The conserved frameworkregions were constructed using crystal coordinates taken from highlyhomologous human variable domain structures (Pot and Hil). Complementaritydetermining regions (CDRs) were predicted by grafting loops, taken fromknown immunoglobulin structures, onto the Fv framework models. The CDRtemplates were chosen, where possible, to be of the same length and of highresidue identity or similarity. LCDR1, 2 and 3 as well as HCDR1 and 2 forthe Fv were constructed using this strategy. For HCDR3 prediction, adatabase containing the Cartesian coordinates of 30 of these loops wascompiled from unliganded antibody X-ray crystallographic structures and anHCDR3 of the same length as that of the B CLL Fv was selected as a template.In one case (Yar), the resulting HCDR3 model gave unfavourable interactionswhen incorporated into the Fv model. This HCDR3 was therefore modelled usingan alternative strategy of construction of the loop stems, using apreviously described HCDR3 conformation (Pot), followed by chain closurewith a β-turn. The template models were subjected to positionalrefinement using energy minimisation and molecular dynamics simulations(X-PLOR). An electrostatic surface description (GRASP) did not reveal acommon structural feature within the binding sites of the three polyreactiveFv. Thus, polyreactive immunoglobulins may recognise similar and multipleantigens through a diverse array of binding site structures.

  20. The structure of BVU2987 from Bacteroides vulgatus reveals a superfamily of bacterial periplasmic proteins with possible inhibitory function

    Das, Debanu; Finn, Robert D.; Carlton, Dennis; Miller, Mitchell D.; Abdubek, Polat; Astakhova, Tamara; Axelrod, Herbert L.; Bakolitsa, Constantina; Chen, Connie; Chiu, Hsiu-Ju; Chiu, Michelle; Clayton, Thomas; Deller, Marc C.; Duan, Lian; Ellrott, Kyle; Ernst, Dustin; Farr, Carol L.; Feuerhelm, Julie; Grant, Joanna C.; Grzechnik, Anna; Han, Gye Won; Jaroszewski, Lukasz; Jin, Kevin K.; Klock, Heath E.; Knuth, Mark W.; Kozbial, Piotr; Krishna, S. Sri; Kumar, Abhinav; Marciano, David; McMullan, Daniel; Morse, Andrew T.; Nigoghossian, Edward; Nopakun, Amanda; Okach, Linda; Puckett, Christina; Reyes, Ron; Rife, Christopher L.; Sefcovic, Natasha; Tien, Henry J.; Trame, Christine B.; Bedem, Henry van den; Weekes, Dana; Wooten, Tiffany; Xu, Qingping; Hodgson, Keith O.; Wooley, John; Elsliger, Marc-André; Deacon, Ashley M.; Godzik, Adam; Lesley, Scott A.; Wilson, Ian A.

    2010-01-01

    The crystal structure of the BVU2987 gene product from B. vulgatus (UniProt A6L4L1) reveals that members of the new Pfam family PF11396 (domain of unknown function; DUF2874) are similar to β-lactamase inhibitor protein and YpmB. Proteins that contain the DUF2874 domain constitute a new Pfam family PF11396. Members of this family have predominantly been identified in microbes found in the human gut and oral cavity. The crystal structure of one member of this family, BVU2987 from Bacteroides vulgatus, has been determined, revealing a β-lactamase inhibitor protein-like structure with a tandem repeat of domains. Sequence analysis and structural comparisons reveal that BVU2987 and other DUF2874 proteins are related to β-lactamase inhibitor protein, PepSY and SmpA-OmlA proteins and hence are likely to function as inhibitory proteins

  1. Probing of RNA structures in a positive sense RNA virus reveals selection pressures for structural elements

    Watters, Kyle E; Choudhary, Krishna; Aviran, Sharon; Perry, Keith L

    2018-01-01

    Abstract In single stranded (+)-sense RNA viruses, RNA structural elements (SEs) play essential roles in the infection process from replication to encapsidation. Using selective 2′-hydroxyl acylation analyzed by primer extension sequencing (SHAPE-Seq) and covariation analysis, we explore the structural features of the third genome segment of cucumber mosaic virus (CMV), RNA3 (2216 nt), both in vitro and in plant cell lysates. Comparing SHAPE-Seq and covariation analysis results revealed multiple SEs in the coat protein open reading frame and 3′ untranslated region. Four of these SEs were mutated and serially passaged in Nicotiana tabacum plants to identify biologically selected changes to the original mutated sequences. After passaging, loop mutants showed partial reversion to their wild-type sequence and SEs that were structurally disrupted by mutations were restored to wild-type-like structures via synonymous mutations in planta. These results support the existence and selection of virus open reading frame SEs in the host organism and provide a framework for further studies on the role of RNA structure in viral infection. Additionally, this work demonstrates the applicability of high-throughput chemical probing in plant cell lysates and presents a new method for calculating SHAPE reactivities from overlapping reverse transcriptase priming sites. PMID:29294088

  2. Different Context but Similar Cognitive Structures: Older Adults in Rural Bangladesh.

    Sternäng, Ola; Lövdén, Martin; Kabir, Zarina N; Hamadani, Jena D; Wahlin, Åke

    2016-06-01

    Most research in cognitive aging is based on literate participants from high-income and Western populations. The extent to which findings generalize to low-income and illiterate populations is unknown. The main aim was to examine the structure of between-person differences in cognitive functions among elderly from rural Bangladesh. We used data from the Poverty and Health in Aging (PHA) project in Bangladesh. The participants (n = 452) were in the age range 60-92 years. Structural equation modeling was used to estimate the fit of a five-factor model (episodic recall, episodic recognition, verbal fluency, semantic knowledge, processing speed) and to examine whether the model generalized across age, sex, and literacy. This study demonstrates that an established model of cognition is valid also among older persons from rural Bangladesh. The model demonstrated strong (or scalar) invariance for age, and partial strong invariance for sex and literacy. Semantic knowledge and processing speed showed weak (or metric) sex invariance, and semantic knowledge demonstrated also sensitivity to illiteracy. In general, women performed poorer on all abilities. The structure of individual cognitive differences established in Western populations also fits a population in rural Bangladesh well. This is an important prerequisite for comparisons of cognitive functioning (e.g., declarative memory) across cultures. It is also worth noting that absolute sex differences in cognitive performance among rural elderly in Bangladesh differ from those usually found in Western samples.

  3. Herbaspirillum seropedicae signal transduction protein PII is structurally similar to the enteric GlnK.

    Machado Benelli, Elaine; Buck, Martin; Polikarpov, Igor; Maltempi de Souza, Emanuel; Cruz, Leonardo M; Pedrosa, Fábio O

    2002-07-01

    PII-like proteins are signal transduction proteins found in bacteria, archaea and eukaryotes. They mediate a variety of cellular responses. A second PII-like protein, called GlnK, has been found in several organisms. In the diazotroph Herbaspirillum seropedicae, PII protein is involved in sensing nitrogen levels and controlling nitrogen fixation genes. In this work, the crystal structure of the unliganded H. seropedicae PII was solved by X-ray diffraction. H. seropedicae PII has a Gly residue, Gly108 preceding Pro109 and the main-chain forms a beta turn. The glycine at position 108 allows a bend in the C-terminal main-chain, thereby modifying the surface of the cleft between monomers and potentially changing function. The structure suggests that the C-terminal region of PII proteins may be involved in specificity of function, and nonenteric diazotrophs are found to have the C-terminal consensus XGXDAX(107-112). We are also proposing binding sites for ATP and 2-oxoglutarate based on the structural alignment of PII with PII-ATP/GlnK-ATP, 5-carboxymethyl-2-hydroxymuconate isomerase and 4-oxalocrotonate tautomerase bound to the inhibitor 2-oxo-3-pentynoate.

  4. Cocaine Hydrochloride Structure in Solution Revealed by Three Chiroptical Methods

    Fagan, P.; Kocourková, L.; Tatarkovič, M.; Králík, F.; Kuchař, M.; Setnička, V.; Bouř, Petr

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 18, č. 16 (2017), s. 2258-2265 ISSN 1439-4235 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA16-05935S; GA MŠk(CZ) LTC17012 Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : analytical methods * circular dichroism * density functional calculations * Raman spectroscopy * structure elucidation Subject RIV: CF - Physical ; Theoretical Chemistry OBOR OECD: Physical chemistry Impact factor: 3.075, year: 2016

  5. Structure of Drosophila Oskar reveals a novel RNA binding protein

    Yang, Na; Yu, Zhenyu; Hu, Menglong; Wang, Mingzhu; Lehmann, Ruth; Xu, Rui-Ming

    2015-01-01

    Oskar (Osk) protein plays critical roles during Drosophila germ cell development, yet its functions in germ-line formation and body patterning remain poorly understood. This situation contrasts sharply with the vast knowledge about the function and mechanism of osk mRNA localization. Osk is predicted to have an N-terminal LOTUS domain (Osk-N), which has been suggested to bind RNA, and a C-terminal hydrolase-like domain (Osk-C) of unknown function. Here, we report the crystal structures of Osk-N and Osk-C. Osk-N shows a homodimer of winged-helix–fold modules, but without detectable RNA-binding activity. Osk-C has a lipase-fold structure but lacks critical catalytic residues at the putative active site. Surprisingly, we found that Osk-C binds the 3′UTRs of osk and nanos mRNA in vitro. Mutational studies identified a region of Osk-C important for mRNA binding. These results suggest possible functions of Osk in the regulation of stability, regulation of translation, and localization of relevant mRNAs through direct interaction with their 3′UTRs, and provide structural insights into a novel protein–RNA interaction motif involving a hydrolase-related domain. PMID:26324911

  6. From epidemics to information propagation: Striking differences in structurally similar adaptive network models

    Trajanovski, Stojan; Guo, Dongchao; Van Mieghem, Piet

    2015-09-01

    The continuous-time adaptive susceptible-infected-susceptible (ASIS) epidemic model and the adaptive information diffusion (AID) model are two adaptive spreading processes on networks, in which a link in the network changes depending on the infectious state of its end nodes, but in opposite ways: (i) In the ASIS model a link is removed between two nodes if exactly one of the nodes is infected to suppress the epidemic, while a link is created in the AID model to speed up the information diffusion; (ii) a link is created between two susceptible nodes in the ASIS model to strengthen the healthy part of the network, while a link is broken in the AID model due to the lack of interest in informationless nodes. The ASIS and AID models may be considered as first-order models for cascades in real-world networks. While the ASIS model has been exploited in the literature, we show that the AID model is realistic by obtaining a good fit with Facebook data. Contrary to the common belief and intuition for such similar models, we show that the ASIS and AID models exhibit different but not opposite properties. Most remarkably, a unique metastable state always exists in the ASIS model, while there an hourglass-shaped region of instability in the AID model. Moreover, the epidemic threshold is a linear function in the effective link-breaking rate in the AID model, while it is almost constant but noisy in the AID model.

  7. A discriminative structural similarity measure and its application to video-volume registration for endoscope three-dimensional motion tracking.

    Luo, Xiongbiao; Mori, Kensaku

    2014-06-01

    Endoscope 3-D motion tracking, which seeks to synchronize pre- and intra-operative images in endoscopic interventions, is usually performed as video-volume registration that optimizes the similarity between endoscopic video and pre-operative images. The tracking performance, in turn, depends significantly on whether a similarity measure can successfully characterize the difference between video sequences and volume rendering images driven by pre-operative images. The paper proposes a discriminative structural similarity measure, which uses the degradation of structural information and takes image correlation or structure, luminance, and contrast into consideration, to boost video-volume registration. By applying the proposed similarity measure to endoscope tracking, it was demonstrated to be more accurate and robust than several available similarity measures, e.g., local normalized cross correlation, normalized mutual information, modified mean square error, or normalized sum squared difference. Based on clinical data evaluation, the tracking error was reduced significantly from at least 14.6 mm to 4.5 mm. The processing time was accelerated more than 30 frames per second using graphics processing unit.

  8. Ulysses transposable element of Drosophila shows high structural similarities to functional domains of retroviruses.

    Evgen'ev, M B; Corces, V G; Lankenau, D H

    1992-06-05

    We have determined the DNA structure of the Ulysses transposable element of Drosophila virilis and found that this transposon is 10,653 bp and is flanked by two unusually large direct repeats 2136 bp long. Ulysses shows the characteristic organization of LTR-containing retrotransposons, with matrix and capsid protein domains encoded in the first open reading frame. In addition, Ulysses contains protease, reverse transcriptase, RNase H and integrase domains encoded in the second open reading frame. Ulysses lacks a third open reading frame present in some retrotransposons that could encode an env-like protein. A dendrogram analysis based on multiple alignments of the protease, reverse transcriptase, RNase H, integrase and tRNA primer binding site of all known Drosophila LTR-containing retrotransposon sequences establishes a phylogenetic relationship of Ulysses to other retrotransposons and suggests that Ulysses belongs to a new family of this type of elements.

  9. Functional and structural comparison of visual lateralization in birds – similar but still different

    Ströckens, Felix

    2014-01-01

    Vertebrate brains display physiological and anatomical left-right differences, which are related to hemispheric dominances for specific functions. Functional lateralizations likely rely on structural left-right differences in intra- and interhemispheric connectivity patterns that develop in tight gene-environment interactions. The visual systems of chickens and pigeons show that asymmetrical light stimulation during ontogeny induces a dominance of the left hemisphere for visuomotor control that is paralleled by projection asymmetries within the ascending visual pathways. But structural asymmetries vary essentially between both species concerning the affected pathway (thalamo- vs. tectofugal system), constancy of effects (transient vs. permanent), and the hemisphere receiving stronger bilateral input (right vs. left). These discrepancies suggest that at least two aspects of visual processes are influenced by asymmetric light stimulation: (1) visuomotor dominance develops within the ontogenetically stronger stimulated hemisphere but not necessarily in the one receiving stronger bottom-up input. As a secondary consequence of asymmetrical light experience, lateralized top-down mechanisms play a critical role in the emergence of hemispheric dominance. (2) Ontogenetic light experiences may affect the dominant use of left- and right-hemispheric strategies. Evidences from social and spatial cognition tasks indicate that chickens rely more on a right-hemispheric global strategy whereas pigeons display a dominance of the left hemisphere. Thus, behavioral asymmetries are linked to a stronger bilateral input to the right hemisphere in chickens but to the left one in pigeons. The degree of bilateral visual input may determine the dominant visual processing strategy when redundant encoding is possible. This analysis supports that environmental stimulation affects the balance between hemispheric-specific processing by lateralized interactions of bottom-up and top-down systems

  10. Functional and structural comparison of visual lateralization in birds – similar but still different

    Martina eManns

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Vertebrate brains display physiological and anatomical left-right differences, which are related to hemispheric dominances for specific functions. Functional lateralizations likely rely on structural left-right differences in intra- and interhemispheric connectivity patterns that develop in tight gene-environment interactions. The visual systems of chickens and pigeons show that asymmetrical light stimulation during ontogeny induces a dominance of the left hemisphere for visuomotor control that is paralleled by projection asymmetries within the ascending visual pathways. But structural asymmetries vary essentially between both species concerning the affected pathway (thalamo- vs. tectofugal system, constancy of effects (transient vs. permanent, and the hemisphere receiving stronger bilateral input (right vs. left. These discrepancies suggest that at least two aspects of visual processes are influenced by asymmetric light stimulation: 1. Visuomotor dominance develops within the ontogenetically stronger stimulated hemisphere but not necessarily in the one receiving stronger bottom-up input. As a secondary consequence of asymmetrical light experience, lateralized top-down mechanisms play a critical role in the emergence of hemispheric dominance. 2. Ontogenetic light experiences may affect the dominant use of left- and right-hemispheric strategies. Evidences from social and spatial cognition tasks indicate that chickens rely more on a right-hemispheric global strategy whereas pigeons display a dominance of the left hemisphere. Thus, behavioural asymmetries are linked to a stronger bilateral input to the right hemisphere in chickens but to the left one in pigeons. The degree of bilateral visual input may determine the dominant visual processing strategy when redundant encoding is possible. This analysis supports that environmental stimulation affects the balance between hemispheric-specific processing by lateralized interactions of bottom-up and top

  11. A tale of two pectins: Diverse fine structures can result from identical processive PME treatments on similar high DM subtrates

    The effects of a processive pectin-methylesterase treatment on two different pectins, both possessing a high degree of methylesterification, were investigated. While the starting samples were purportedly very similar in fine structure, and even though the sample-averaged degree of methylesterificati...

  12. Predator-guided sampling reveals biotic structure in the bathypelagic.

    Benoit-Bird, Kelly J; Southall, Brandon L; Moline, Mark A

    2016-02-24

    We targeted a habitat used differentially by deep-diving, air-breathing predators to empirically sample their prey's distributions off southern California. Fine-scale measurements of the spatial variability of potential prey animals from the surface to 1,200 m were obtained using conventional fisheries echosounders aboard a surface ship and uniquely integrated into a deep-diving autonomous vehicle. Significant spatial variability in the size, composition, total biomass, and spatial organization of biota was evident over all spatial scales examined and was consistent with the general distribution patterns of foraging Cuvier's beaked whales (Ziphius cavirostris) observed in separate studies. Striking differences found in prey characteristics between regions at depth, however, did not reflect differences observed in surface layers. These differences in deep pelagic structure horizontally and relative to surface structure, absent clear physical differences, change our long-held views of this habitat as uniform. The revelation that animals deep in the water column are so spatially heterogeneous at scales from 10 m to 50 km critically affects our understanding of the processes driving predator-prey interactions, energy transfer, biogeochemical cycling, and other ecological processes in the deep sea, and the connections between the productive surface mixed layer and the deep-water column. © 2016 The Author(s).

  13. The interior structure of Ceres as revealed by surface topography

    Fu, Roger R.; Ermakov, Anton; Marchi, Simone; Castillo-Rogez, Julie C.; Raymond, Carol A.; Hager, Bradford; Zuber, Maria; King, Scott D.; Bland, Michael T.; De Sanctis, Maria Cristina; Preusker, Frank; Park, Ryan S.; Russell, Christopher T.

    2017-01-01

    Ceres, the largest body in the asteroid belt (940 km diameter), provides a unique opportunity to study the interior structure of a volatile-rich dwarf planet. Variations in a planetary body's subsurface rheology and density affect the rate of topographic relaxation. Preferential attenuation of long wavelength topography (≥150 km) on Ceres suggests that the viscosity of its crust decreases with increasing depth. We present finite element (FE) geodynamical simulations of Ceres to identify the internal structures and compositions that best reproduce its topography as observed by the NASA Dawn mission. We infer that Ceres has a mechanically strong crust with maximum effective viscosity ∼1025 Pa s. Combined with density constraints, this rheology suggests a crustal composition of carbonates or phyllosilicates, water ice, and at least 30 volume percent (vol.%) low-density, high-strength phases most consistent with salt and/or clathrate hydrates. The inference of these crustal materials supports the past existence of a global ocean, consistent with the observed surface composition. Meanwhile, we infer that the uppermost ≥60 km of the silicate-rich mantle is mechanically weak with viscosity <1021 Pa s, suggesting the presence of liquid pore fluids in this region and a low temperature history that avoided igneous differentiation due to late accretion or efficient heat loss through hydrothermal processes.

  14. Structures of the first representatives of Pfam family PF06938 (DUF1285) reveal a new fold with repeated structural motifs and possible involvement in signal transduction

    Han, Gye Won; Bakolitsa, Constantina; Miller, Mitchell D.; Kumar, Abhinav; Carlton, Dennis; Najmanovich, Rafael J.; Abdubek, Polat; Astakhova, Tamara; Axelrod, Herbert L.; Chen, Connie; Chiu, Hsiu-Ju; Clayton, Thomas; Das, Debanu; Deller, Marc C.; Duan, Lian; Ernst, Dustin; Feuerhelm, Julie; Grant, Joanna C.; Grzechnik, Anna; Jaroszewski, Lukasz; Jin, Kevin K.; Johnson, Hope A.; Klock, Heath E.; Knuth, Mark W.; Kozbial, Piotr; Krishna, S. Sri; Marciano, David; McMullan, Daniel; Morse, Andrew T.; Nigoghossian, Edward; Okach, Linda; Reyes, Ron; Rife, Christopher L.; Sefcovic, Natasha; Tien, Henry J.; Trame, Christine B.; Bedem, Henry van den; Weekes, Dana; Xu, Qingping; Hodgson, Keith O.; Wooley, John; Elsliger, Marc-André; Deacon, Ashley M.; Godzik, Adam; Lesley, Scott A.; Wilson, Ian A.

    2010-01-01

    The crystal structures of SPO0140 and Sbal-2486 revealed a two-domain structure that adopts a novel fold. Analysis of the interdomain cleft suggests a nucleotide-based ligand with a genome context indicating signaling as a possible role for this family. The crystal structures of SPO0140 and Sbal-2486 were determined using the semiautomated high-throughput pipeline of the Joint Center for Structural Genomics (JCSG) as part of the NIGMS Protein Structure Initiative (PSI). The structures revealed a conserved core with domain duplication and a superficial similarity of the C-terminal domain to pleckstrin homology-like folds. The conservation of the domain interface indicates a potential binding site that is likely to involve a nucleotide-based ligand, with genome-context and gene-fusion analyses additionally supporting a role for this family in signal transduction, possibly during oxidative stress

  15. Revealing the structure of the world airline network

    Verma, T.; Araújo, N. A. M.; Herrmann, H. J.

    2014-07-01

    Resilience of most critical infrastructures against failure of elements that appear insignificant is usually taken for granted. The World Airline Network (WAN) is an infrastructure that reduces the geographical gap between societies, both small and large, and brings forth economic gains. With the extensive use of a publicly maintained data set that contains information about airports and alternative connections between these airports, we empirically reveal that the WAN is a redundant and resilient network for long distance air travel, but otherwise breaks down completely due to removal of short and apparently insignificant connections. These short range connections with moderate number of passengers and alternate flights are the connections that keep remote parts of the world accessible. It is surprising, insofar as there exists a highly resilient and strongly connected core consisting of a small fraction of airports (around 2.3%) together with an extremely fragile star-like periphery. Yet, in spite of their relevance, more than 90% of the world airports are still interconnected upon removal of this core. With standard and unconventional removal measures we compare both empirical and topological perceptions for the fragmentation of the world. We identify how the WAN is organized into different classes of clusters based on the physical proximity of airports and analyze the consequence of this fragmentation.

  16. Global Distribution and Vertical Structure of Clouds Revealed by CALIPSO

    Yi, Y.; Minnis, P.; Winker, D.; Huang, J.; Sun-Mack, S.; Ayers, K.

    2007-12-01

    Understanding the effects of clouds on Earth's radiation balance, especially on longwave fluxes within the atmosphere, depends on having accurate knowledge of cloud vertical location within the atmosphere. The Cloud- Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder Satellite Observations (CALIPSO) satellite mission provides the opportunity to measure the vertical distribution of clouds at a greater detail than ever before possible. The CALIPSO cloud layer products from June 2006 to June 2007 are analyzed to determine the occurrence frequency and thickness of clouds as functions of time, latitude, and altitude. In particular, the latitude-longitude and vertical distributions of single- and multi-layer clouds and the latitudinal movement of cloud cover with the changing seasons are examined. The seasonal variablities of cloud frequency and geometric thickness are also analyzed and compared with similar quantities derived from the Aqua Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) using the Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES) cloud retrieval algorithms. The comparisons provide an estimate of the errors in cloud fraction, top height, and thickness incurred by passive algorithms.

  17. The Structure of Neurexin 1[alpha] Reveals Features Promoting a Role as Synaptic Organizer

    Chen, Fang; Venugopal, Vandavasi; Murray, Beverly; Rudenko, Gabby (Michigan)

    2014-10-02

    {alpha}-Neurexins are essential synaptic adhesion molecules implicated in autism spectrum disorder and schizophrenia. The {alpha}-neurexin extracellular domain consists of six LNS domains interspersed by three EGF-like repeats and interacts with many different proteins in the synaptic cleft. To understand how {alpha}-neurexins might function as synaptic organizers, we solved the structure of the neurexin 1{alpha} extracellular domain (n1{alpha}) to 2.65 {angstrom}. The L-shaped molecule can be divided into a flexible repeat I (LNS1-EGF-A-LNS2), a rigid horseshoe-shaped repeat II (LNS3-EGF-B-LNS4) with structural similarity to so-called reelin repeats, and an extended repeat III (LNS5-EGF-B-LNS6) with controlled flexibility. A 2.95 {angstrom} structure of n1{alpha} carrying splice insert SS3 in LNS4 reveals that SS3 protrudes as a loop and does not alter the rigid arrangement of repeat II. The global architecture imposed by conserved structural features enables {alpha}-neurexins to recruit and organize proteins in distinct and variable ways, influenced by splicing, thereby promoting synaptic function.

  18. Structure of a Spumaretrovirus Gag Central Domain Reveals an Ancient Retroviral Capsid.

    Neil J Ball

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The Spumaretrovirinae, or foamy viruses (FVs are complex retroviruses that infect many species of monkey and ape. Despite little sequence homology, FV and orthoretroviral Gag proteins perform equivalent functions, including genome packaging, virion assembly, trafficking and membrane targeting. However, there is a paucity of structural information for FVs and it is unclear how disparate FV and orthoretroviral Gag molecules share the same function. To probe the functional overlap of FV and orthoretroviral Gag we have determined the structure of a central region of Gag from the Prototype FV (PFV. The structure comprises two all α-helical domains NtDCEN and CtDCEN that although they have no sequence similarity, we show they share the same core fold as the N- (NtDCA and C-terminal domains (CtDCA of archetypal orthoretroviral capsid protein (CA. Moreover, structural comparisons with orthoretroviral CA align PFV NtDCEN and CtDCEN with NtDCA and CtDCA respectively. Further in vitro and functional virological assays reveal that residues making inter-domain NtDCEN-CtDCEN interactions are required for PFV capsid assembly and that intact capsid is required for PFV reverse transcription. These data provide the first information that relates the Gag proteins of Spuma and Orthoretrovirinae and suggests a common ancestor for both lineages containing an ancient CA fold.

  19. Structure of a Spumaretrovirus Gag Central Domain Reveals an Ancient Retroviral Capsid

    Dutta, Moumita; Pollard, Dominic J.; Goldstone, David C.; Ramos, Andres; Müllers, Erik; Stirnnagel, Kristin; Stanke, Nicole; Lindemann, Dirk; Taylor, William R.; Rosenthal, Peter B.

    2016-01-01

    The Spumaretrovirinae, or foamy viruses (FVs) are complex retroviruses that infect many species of monkey and ape. Despite little sequence homology, FV and orthoretroviral Gag proteins perform equivalent functions, including genome packaging, virion assembly, trafficking and membrane targeting. However, there is a paucity of structural information for FVs and it is unclear how disparate FV and orthoretroviral Gag molecules share the same function. To probe the functional overlap of FV and orthoretroviral Gag we have determined the structure of a central region of Gag from the Prototype FV (PFV). The structure comprises two all α-helical domains NtDCEN and CtDCEN that although they have no sequence similarity, we show they share the same core fold as the N- (NtDCA) and C-terminal domains (CtDCA) of archetypal orthoretroviral capsid protein (CA). Moreover, structural comparisons with orthoretroviral CA align PFV NtDCEN and CtDCEN with NtDCA and CtDCA respectively. Further in vitro and functional virological assays reveal that residues making inter-domain NtDCEN—CtDCEN interactions are required for PFV capsid assembly and that intact capsid is required for PFV reverse transcription. These data provide the first information that relates the Gag proteins of Spuma and Orthoretrovirinae and suggests a common ancestor for both lineages containing an ancient CA fold. PMID:27829070

  20. Structure of the human protein kinase MPSK1 reveals an atypical activation loop architecture.

    Eswaran, Jeyanthy; Bernad, Antonio; Ligos, Jose M; Guinea, Barbara; Debreczeni, Judit E; Sobott, Frank; Parker, Sirlester A; Najmanovich, Rafael; Turk, Benjamin E; Knapp, Stefan

    2008-01-01

    The activation segment of protein kinases is structurally highly conserved and central to regulation of kinase activation. Here we report an atypical activation segment architecture in human MPSK1 comprising a beta sheet and a large alpha-helical insertion. Sequence comparisons suggested that similar activation segments exist in all members of the MPSK1 family and in MAST kinases. The consequence of this nonclassical activation segment on substrate recognition was studied using peptide library screens that revealed a preferred substrate sequence of X-X-P/V/I-phi-H/Y-T*-N/G-X-X-X (phi is an aliphatic residue). In addition, we identified the GTPase DRG1 as an MPSK1 interaction partner and specific substrate. The interaction domain in DRG1 was mapped to the N terminus, leading to recruitment and phosphorylation at Thr100 within the GTPase domain. The presented data reveal an atypical kinase structural motif and suggest a role of MPSK1 regulating DRG1, a GTPase involved in regulation of cellular growth.

  1. Priming paradigm reveals harmonic structure processing in congenital amusia.

    Tillmann, Barbara; Gosselin, Nathalie; Bigand, Emmanuel; Peretz, Isabelle

    2012-09-01

    Deficits for pitch structure processing in congenital amusia has been mostly reported for melodic stimuli and explicit judgments. The present study investigated congenital amusia with harmonic stimuli and a priming task. Amusic and control participants performed a speeded phoneme discrimination task on sung chord sequences. The target phoneme was sung either on a functionally important chord (tonic chord, referred to as "related target") or a less important one (subdominant chord, referred to as "less-related target"). Correct response times were faster when the target phoneme was sung on tonic chords rather than on subdominant chords, and this effect was less pronounced, albeit significant, in amusic participants. These data report for the first time a deficit in congenital amusia for chord processing, but also provide evidence that, despite this deficit, amusic individuals have internalized sophisticated syntactic-like functions of chords in the Western tonal musical system. This finding suggests that thanks to this musical knowledge, amusic individuals could develop expectancies for musical events, and, presumably, follow the tension-relaxation schemas in Western tonal music, which also influence emotional responses to music. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Srl. All rights reserved.

  2. Probabilistic diffusion tractography reveals improvement of structural network in musicians.

    Jianfu Li

    Full Text Available PURPOSE: Musicians experience a large amount of information transfer and integration of complex sensory, motor, and auditory processes when training and playing musical instruments. Therefore, musicians are a useful model in which to investigate neural adaptations in the brain. METHODS: Here, based on diffusion-weighted imaging, probabilistic tractography was used to determine the architecture of white matter anatomical networks in musicians and non-musicians. Furthermore, the features of the white matter networks were analyzed using graph theory. RESULTS: Small-world properties of the white matter network were observed in both groups. Compared with non-musicians, the musicians exhibited significantly increased connectivity strength in the left and right supplementary motor areas, the left calcarine fissure and surrounding cortex and the right caudate nucleus, as well as a significantly larger weighted clustering coefficient in the right olfactory cortex, the left medial superior frontal gyrus, the right gyrus rectus, the left lingual gyrus, the left supramarginal gyrus, and the right pallidum. Furthermore, there were differences in the node betweenness centrality in several regions. However, no significant differences in topological properties were observed at a global level. CONCLUSIONS: We illustrated preliminary findings to extend the network level understanding of white matter plasticity in musicians who have had long-term musical training. These structural, network-based findings may indicate that musicians have enhanced information transmission efficiencies in local white matter networks that are related to musical training.

  3. Differences in Cellulosic Supramolecular Structure of Compositionally Similar Rice Straw Affect Biomass Metabolism by Paddy Soil Microbiota.

    Tatsuki Ogura

    Full Text Available Because they are strong and stable, lignocellulosic supramolecular structures in plant cell walls are resistant to decomposition. However, they can be degraded and recycled by soil microbiota. Little is known about the biomass degradation profiles of complex microbiota based on differences in cellulosic supramolecular structures without compositional variations. Here, we characterized and evaluated the cellulosic supramolecular structures and composition of rice straw biomass processed under different milling conditions. We used a range of techniques including solid- and solution-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy followed by thermodynamic and microbial degradability characterization using thermogravimetric analysis, solution-state NMR, and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis. These measured data were further analyzed using an "ECOMICS" web-based toolkit. From the results, we found that physical pretreatment of rice straw alters the lignocellulosic supramolecular structure by cleaving significant molecular lignocellulose bonds. The transformation from crystalline to amorphous cellulose shifted the thermal degradation profiles to lower temperatures. In addition, pretreated rice straw samples developed different microbiota profiles with different metabolic dynamics during the biomass degradation process. This is the first report to comprehensively characterize the structure, composition, and thermal degradation and microbiota profiles using the ECOMICS toolkit. By revealing differences between lignocellulosic supramolecular structures of biomass processed under different milling conditions, our analysis revealed how the characteristic compositions of microbiota profiles develop in addition to their metabolic profiles and dynamics during biomass degradation.

  4. Disrupted topological organization of structural networks revealed by probabilistic diffusion tractography in Tourette syndrome children.

    Wen, Hongwei; Liu, Yue; Rekik, Islem; Wang, Shengpei; Zhang, Jishui; Zhang, Yue; Peng, Yun; He, Huiguang

    2017-08-01

    Tourette syndrome (TS) is a childhood-onset neurobehavioral disorder. Although previous TS studies revealed structural abnormalities in distinct corticobasal ganglia circuits, the topological alterations of the whole-brain white matter (WM) structural networks remain poorly understood. Here, we used diffusion MRI probabilistic tractography and graph theoretical analysis to investigate the topological organization of WM networks in 44 drug-naive TS children and 41 age- and gender-matched healthy children. The WM networks were constructed by estimating inter-regional connectivity probability and the topological properties were characterized using graph theory. We found that both TS and control groups showed an efficient small-world organization in WM networks. However, compared to controls, TS children exhibited decreased global and local efficiency, increased shortest path length and small worldness, indicating a disrupted balance between local specialization and global integration in structural networks. Although both TS and control groups showed highly similar hub distributions, TS children exhibited significant decreased nodal efficiency, mainly distributed in the default mode, language, visual, and sensorimotor systems. Furthermore, two separate networks showing significantly decreased connectivity in TS group were identified using network-based statistical (NBS) analysis, primarily composed of the parieto-occipital cortex, precuneus, and paracentral lobule. Importantly, we combined support vector machine and multiple kernel learning frameworks to fuse multiple levels of network topological features for classification of individuals, achieving high accuracy of 86.47%. Together, our study revealed the disrupted topological organization of structural networks related to pathophysiology of TS, and the discriminative topological features for classification are potential quantitative neuroimaging biomarkers for clinical TS diagnosis. Hum Brain Mapp 38:3988-4008, 2017

  5. Protein structure similarity clustering (PSSC) and natural product structure as inspiration sources for drug development and chemical genomics

    Dekker, Frank J; Koch, Marcus A; Waldmann, Herbert; Dekker, Frans

    Finding small molecules that modulate protein function is of primary importance in drug development and in the emerging field of chemical genomics. To facilitate the identification of such molecules, we developed a novel strategy making use of structural conservatism found in protein domain

  6. Prediction of Protein Structural Classes for Low-Similarity Sequences Based on Consensus Sequence and Segmented PSSM

    Yunyun Liang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Prediction of protein structural classes for low-similarity sequences is useful for understanding fold patterns, regulation, functions, and interactions of proteins. It is well known that feature extraction is significant to prediction of protein structural class and it mainly uses protein primary sequence, predicted secondary structure sequence, and position-specific scoring matrix (PSSM. Currently, prediction solely based on the PSSM has played a key role in improving the prediction accuracy. In this paper, we propose a novel method called CSP-SegPseP-SegACP by fusing consensus sequence (CS, segmented PsePSSM, and segmented autocovariance transformation (ACT based on PSSM. Three widely used low-similarity datasets (1189, 25PDB, and 640 are adopted in this paper. Then a 700-dimensional (700D feature vector is constructed and the dimension is decreased to 224D by using principal component analysis (PCA. To verify the performance of our method, rigorous jackknife cross-validation tests are performed on 1189, 25PDB, and 640 datasets. Comparison of our results with the existing PSSM-based methods demonstrates that our method achieves the favorable and competitive performance. This will offer an important complementary to other PSSM-based methods for prediction of protein structural classes for low-similarity sequences.

  7. Transcriptome analysis of paired primary colorectal carcinoma and liver metastases reveals fusion transcripts and similar gene expression profiles in primary carcinoma and liver metastases

    Lee, Ja-Rang; Kwon, Chae Hwa; Choi, Yuri; Park, Hye Ji; Kim, Hyun Sung; Jo, Hong-Jae; Oh, Nahmgun; Park, Do Youn

    2016-01-01

    Despite the clinical significance of liver metastases, the difference between molecular and cellular changes in primary colorectal cancers (CRC) and matched liver metastases is poorly understood. In order to compare gene expression patterns and identify fusion genes in these two types of tumors, we performed high-throughput transcriptome sequencing of five sets of quadruple-matched tissues (primary CRC, liver metastases, normal colon, and liver). The gene expression patterns in normal colon and liver were successfully distinguished from those in CRCs; however, RNA sequencing revealed that the gene expression between primary CRCs and their matched liver metastases is highly similar. We identified 1895 genes that were differentially expressed in the primary carcinoma and liver metastases, than that in the normal colon tissues. A major proportion of the transcripts, identified by gene expression profiling as significantly enriched in the primary carcinoma and metastases, belonged to gene ontology categories involved in the cell cycle, mitosis, and cell division. Furthermore, we identified gene fusion events in primary carcinoma and metastases, and the fusion transcripts were experimentally confirmed. Among these, a chimeric transcript resulting from the fusion of RNF43 and SUPT4H1 was found to occur frequently in primary colorectal carcinoma. In addition, knockdown of the expression of this RNF43-SUPT4H1 chimeric transcript was found to have a growth-inhibitory effect in colorectal cancer cells. The present study reports a high concordance of gene expression in the primary carcinoma and liver metastases, and reveals potential new targets, such as fusion genes, against primary and metastatic colorectal carcinoma. The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12885-016-2596-3) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users

  8. Being First Matters: Topographical Representational Similarity Analysis of ERP Signals Reveals Separate Networks for Audiovisual Temporal Binding Depending on the Leading Sense.

    Cecere, Roberto; Gross, Joachim; Willis, Ashleigh; Thut, Gregor

    2017-05-24

    In multisensory integration, processing in one sensory modality is enhanced by complementary information from other modalities. Intersensory timing is crucial in this process because only inputs reaching the brain within a restricted temporal window are perceptually bound. Previous research in the audiovisual field has investigated various features of the temporal binding window, revealing asymmetries in its size and plasticity depending on the leading input: auditory-visual (AV) or visual-auditory (VA). Here, we tested whether separate neuronal mechanisms underlie this AV-VA dichotomy in humans. We recorded high-density EEG while participants performed an audiovisual simultaneity judgment task including various AV-VA asynchronies and unisensory control conditions (visual-only, auditory-only) and tested whether AV and VA processing generate different patterns of brain activity. After isolating the multisensory components of AV-VA event-related potentials (ERPs) from the sum of their unisensory constituents, we ran a time-resolved topographical representational similarity analysis (tRSA) comparing the AV and VA ERP maps. Spatial cross-correlation matrices were built from real data to index the similarity between the AV and VA maps at each time point (500 ms window after stimulus) and then correlated with two alternative similarity model matrices: AV maps = VA maps versus AV maps ≠ VA maps The tRSA results favored the AV maps ≠ VA maps model across all time points, suggesting that audiovisual temporal binding (indexed by synchrony perception) engages different neural pathways depending on the leading sense. The existence of such dual route supports recent theoretical accounts proposing that multiple binding mechanisms are implemented in the brain to accommodate different information parsing strategies in auditory and visual sensory systems. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Intersensory timing is a crucial aspect of multisensory integration, determining whether and how

  9. MetalS(3), a database-mining tool for the identification of structurally similar metal sites.

    Valasatava, Yana; Rosato, Antonio; Cavallaro, Gabriele; Andreini, Claudia

    2014-08-01

    We have developed a database search tool to identify metal sites having structural similarity to a query metal site structure within the MetalPDB database of minimal functional sites (MFSs) contained in metal-binding biological macromolecules. MFSs describe the local environment around the metal(s) independently of the larger context of the macromolecular structure. Such a local environment has a determinant role in tuning the chemical reactivity of the metal, ultimately contributing to the functional properties of the whole system. The database search tool, which we called MetalS(3) (Metal Sites Similarity Search), can be accessed through a Web interface at http://metalweb.cerm.unifi.it/tools/metals3/ . MetalS(3) uses a suitably adapted version of an algorithm that we previously developed to systematically compare the structure of the query metal site with each MFS in MetalPDB. For each MFS, the best superposition is kept. All these superpositions are then ranked according to the MetalS(3) scoring function and are presented to the user in tabular form. The user can interact with the output Web page to visualize the structural alignment or the sequence alignment derived from it. Options to filter the results are available. Test calculations show that the MetalS(3) output correlates well with expectations from protein homology considerations. Furthermore, we describe some usage scenarios that highlight the usefulness of MetalS(3) to obtain mechanistic and functional hints regardless of homology.

  10. Repeated Structural Imaging Reveals Nonlinear Progression of Experience-Dependent Volume Changes in Human Motor Cortex.

    Wenger, Elisabeth; Kühn, Simone; Verrel, Julius; Mårtensson, Johan; Bodammer, Nils Christian; Lindenberger, Ulman; Lövdén, Martin

    2017-05-01

    Evidence for experience-dependent structural brain change in adult humans is accumulating. However, its time course is not well understood, as intervention studies typically consist of only 2 imaging sessions (before vs. after training). We acquired up to 18 structural magnetic resonance images over a 7-week period while 15 right-handed participants practiced left-hand writing and drawing. After 4 weeks, we observed increases in gray matter of both left and right primary motor cortices relative to a control group; 3 weeks later, these differences were no longer reliable. Time-series analyses revealed that gray matter in the primary motor cortices expanded during the first 4 weeks and then partially renormalized, in particular in the right hemisphere, despite continued practice and increasing task proficiency. Similar patterns of expansion followed by partial renormalization are also found in synaptogenesis, cortical map plasticity, and maturation, and may qualify as a general principle of structural plasticity. Research on human brain plasticity needs to encompass more than 2 measurement occasions to capture expansion and potential renormalization processes over time. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  11. White spot syndrome virus isolates of tiger shrimp Penaeus monodon (Fabricious) in India are similar to exotic isolates as revealed by polymerase chain reaction and electron microscopy.

    Mishra, S S; Shekhar, M S

    2005-07-01

    Microbiological analysis of samples collected from cases of white spot disease outbreaks in cultured shrimp in different farms located in three regions along East Coast of India viz. Chidambram (Tamil Nadu), Nellore (Andhra Pradesh) and Balasore (Orissa), revealed presence of Vibrio alginolyticus, Vibrio parahaemolyticus, and Aeromonas spp. but experimental infection trials in Penaeus monodon with these isolates did not induce any acute mortality or formation of white spots on carapace. Infection trials using filtered tissue extracts by oral and injection method induced mortality in healthy P. monodon with all samples and 100% mortality was noted by the end of 7 day post-inoculation. Histopathological analysis demonstrated degenerated cells characterized by hypertrophied nuclei in gills, hepatopancreas and lymphoid organ with presence of intranuclear basophilic or eosino-basophilic bodies in tubular cells and intercellular spaces. Analysis of samples using 3 different primer sets as used by other for detection of white spot syndrome virus (WSSV) generated 643, 1447 and 520bp amplified DNA products in all samples except in one instance. Variable size virions with mean size in the range of 110 x 320 +/- 20 nm were observed under electron microscope. It could be concluded that the viral isolates in India involved with white spot syndrome in cultured shrimp are similar to RV-PJ and SEMBV in Japan, WSBV in Taiwan and WSSV in Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, China and Japan.

  12. Similar prefrontal cortical activities between general fluid intelligence and visuospatial working memory tasks in preschool children as revealed by optical topography.

    Kuwajima, Mariko; Sawaguchi, Toshiyuki

    2010-10-01

    General fluid intelligence (gF) is a major component of intellect in both adults and children. Whereas its neural substrates have been studied relatively thoroughly in adults, those are poorly understood in children, particularly preschoolers. Here, we hypothesized that gF and visuospatial working memory share a common neural system within the lateral prefrontal cortex (LPFC) during the preschool years (4-6 years). At the behavioral level, we found that gF positively and significantly correlated with abilities (especially accuracy) in visuospatial working memory. Optical topography revealed that the LPFC of preschoolers was activated and deactivated during the visuospatial working memory task and the gF task. We found that the spatio-temporal features of neural activity in the LPFC were similar for both the visuospatial working memory task and the gF task. Further, 2 months of training for the visuospatial working memory task significantly increased gF in the preschoolers. These findings suggest that a common neural system in the LPFC is recruited to improve the visuospatial working memory and gF in preschoolers. Efficient recruitment of this neural system may be important for good performance in these functions in preschoolers, and behavioral training using this system would help to increase gF at these ages.

  13. Predicting drug?drug interactions through drug structural similarities and interaction networks incorporating pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics knowledge

    Takeda, Takako; Hao, Ming; Cheng, Tiejun; Bryant, Stephen H.; Wang, Yanli

    2017-01-01

    Drug?drug interactions (DDIs) may lead to adverse effects and potentially result in drug withdrawal from the market. Predicting DDIs during drug development would help reduce development costs and time by rigorous evaluation of drug candidates. The primary mechanisms of DDIs are based on pharmacokinetics (PK) and pharmacodynamics (PD). This study examines the effects of 2D structural similarities of drugs on DDI prediction through interaction networks including both PD and PK knowledge. Our a...

  14. Biophysical investigation of type A PutAs reveals a conserved core oligomeric structure

    Korasick, David A. [Department of Biochemistry, University of Missouri, Columbia MO USA; Singh, Harkewal [Department of Chemistry, University of Missouri, Columbia MO USA; Pemberton, Travis A. [Department of Chemistry, University of Missouri, Columbia MO USA; Luo, Min [Department of Chemistry, University of Missouri, Columbia MO USA; Dhatwalia, Richa [Department of Chemistry, University of Missouri, Columbia MO USA; Tanner, John J. [Department of Biochemistry, University of Missouri, Columbia MO USA; Department of Chemistry, University of Missouri, Columbia MO USA

    2017-08-01

    Many enzymes form homooligomers, yet the functional significance of self-association is seldom obvious. Herein, we examine the connection between oligomerization and catalytic function for proline utilization A (PutA) enzymes. PutAs are bifunctional enzymes that catalyze both reactions of proline catabolism. Type A PutAs are the smallest members of the family, possessing a minimal domain architecture consisting of N-terminal proline dehydrogenase and C-terminal l-glutamate-γ-semialdehyde dehydrogenase modules. Type A PutAs form domain-swapped dimers, and in one case (Bradyrhizobium japonicum PutA), two of the dimers assemble into a ring-shaped tetramer. Whereas the dimer has a clear role in substrate channeling, the functional significance of the tetramer is unknown. To address this question, we performed structural studies of four-type A PutAs from two clades of the PutA tree. The crystal structure of Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus PutA covalently inactivated by N-propargylglycine revealed a fold and substrate-channeling tunnel similar to other PutAs. Small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) and analytical ultracentrifugation indicated that Bdellovibrio PutA is dimeric in solution, in contrast to the prediction from crystal packing of a stable tetrameric assembly. SAXS studies of two other type A PutAs from separate clades also suggested that the dimer predominates in solution. To assess whether the tetramer of B. japonicum PutA is necessary for catalytic function, a hot spot disruption mutant that cleanly produces dimeric protein was generated. The dimeric variant exhibited kinetic parameters similar to the wild-type enzyme. These results implicate the domain-swapped dimer as the core structural and functional unit of type A PutAs.

  15. Structural similarity between β(3)-peptides synthesized from β(3)-homo-amino acids and aspartic acid monomers.

    Ahmed, Sahar; Sprules, Tara; Kaur, Kamaljit

    2014-07-01

    Formation of stable secondary structures by oligomers that mimic natural peptides is a key asset for enhanced biological response. Here we show that oligomeric β(3)-hexapeptides synthesized from L-aspartic acid monomers (β(3)-peptides 1, 5a, and 6) or homologated β(3)-amino acids (β(3)-peptide 2), fold into similar stable 14-helical secondary structures in solution, except that the former form right-handed 14-helix and the later form left-handed 14-helix. β(3)-Peptides from L-Asp monomers contain an additional amide bond in the side chains that provides opportunities for more hydrogen bonding. However, based on the NMR solution structures, we found that β(3)-peptide from L-Asp monomers (1) and from homologated amino acids (2) form similar structures with no additional side-chain interactions. These results suggest that the β(3)-peptides derived from L-Asp are promising peptide-mimetics that can be readily synthesized using L-Asp monomers as well as the right-handed 14-helical conformation of these β(3)-peptides (such as 1 and 6) may prove beneficial in the design of mimics for right-handed α-helix of α-peptides. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Solenopsis invicta virus 3: mapping of structural proteins, ribosomal frameshifting, and similarities to Acyrthosiphon pisum virus and Kelp fly virus.

    Steven M Valles

    Full Text Available Solenopsis invicta virus 3 (SINV-3 is a positive-sense single-stranded RNA virus that infects the red imported fire ant, Solenopsis invicta. We show that the second open reading frame (ORF of the dicistronic genome is expressed via a frameshifting mechanism and that the sequences encoding the structural proteins map to both ORF2 and the 3' end of ORF1, downstream of the sequence that encodes the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase. The genome organization and structural protein expression strategy resemble those of Acyrthosiphon pisum virus (APV, an aphid virus. The capsid protein that is encoded by the 3' end of ORF1 in SINV-3 and APV is predicted to have a jelly-roll fold similar to the capsid proteins of picornaviruses and caliciviruses. The capsid-extension protein that is produced by frameshifting, includes the jelly-roll fold domain encoded by ORF1 as its N-terminus, while the C-terminus encoded by the 5' half of ORF2 has no clear homology with other viral structural proteins. A third protein, encoded by the 3' half of ORF2, is associated with purified virions at sub-stoichiometric ratios. Although the structural proteins can be translated from the genomic RNA, we show that SINV-3 also produces a subgenomic RNA encoding the structural proteins. Circumstantial evidence suggests that APV may also produce such a subgenomic RNA. Both SINV-3 and APV are unclassified picorna-like viruses distantly related to members of the order Picornavirales and the family Caliciviridae. Within this grouping, features of the genome organization and capsid domain structure of SINV-3 and APV appear more similar to caliciviruses, perhaps suggesting the basis for a "Calicivirales" order.

  17. CMASA: an accurate algorithm for detecting local protein structural similarity and its application to enzyme catalytic site annotation

    Li Gong-Hua

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The rapid development of structural genomics has resulted in many "unknown function" proteins being deposited in Protein Data Bank (PDB, thus, the functional prediction of these proteins has become a challenge for structural bioinformatics. Several sequence-based and structure-based methods have been developed to predict protein function, but these methods need to be improved further, such as, enhancing the accuracy, sensitivity, and the computational speed. Here, an accurate algorithm, the CMASA (Contact MAtrix based local Structural Alignment algorithm, has been developed to predict unknown functions of proteins based on the local protein structural similarity. This algorithm has been evaluated by building a test set including 164 enzyme families, and also been compared to other methods. Results The evaluation of CMASA shows that the CMASA is highly accurate (0.96, sensitive (0.86, and fast enough to be used in the large-scale functional annotation. Comparing to both sequence-based and global structure-based methods, not only the CMASA can find remote homologous proteins, but also can find the active site convergence. Comparing to other local structure comparison-based methods, the CMASA can obtain the better performance than both FFF (a method using geometry to predict protein function and SPASM (a local structure alignment method; and the CMASA is more sensitive than PINTS and is more accurate than JESS (both are local structure alignment methods. The CMASA was applied to annotate the enzyme catalytic sites of the non-redundant PDB, and at least 166 putative catalytic sites have been suggested, these sites can not be observed by the Catalytic Site Atlas (CSA. Conclusions The CMASA is an accurate algorithm for detecting local protein structural similarity, and it holds several advantages in predicting enzyme active sites. The CMASA can be used in large-scale enzyme active site annotation. The CMASA can be available by the

  18. Ligand induced structural isomerism in phosphine coordinated gold clusters revealed by ion mobility mass spectrometry

    Ligare, Marshall R.; Baker, Erin M.; Laskin, Julia; Johnson, Grant E.

    2017-01-01

    Structural isomerism in ligated gold clusters is revealed using electrospray ionization ion mobility spectrometry mass spectrometry. Phosphine ligated Au8 clusters are shown to adopt more “extended” type structures with increasing exchange of methyldiphenylphosphine (MePPh2) for triphenylphosphine (PPh3). These ligand-dependant structure-property relationships are critical to applications of clusters in catalysis.

  19. Reynolds stress structures in a self-similar adverse pressure gradient turbulent boundary layer at the verge of separation.

    Atkinson, C.; Sekimoto, A.; Jiménez, J.; Soria, J.

    2018-04-01

    Mean Reynolds stress profiles and instantaneous Reynolds stress structures are investigated in a self-similar adverse pressure gradient turbulent boundary layer (APG-TBL) at the verge of separation using data from direct numerical simulations. The use of a self-similar APG-TBL provides a flow domain in which the flow gradually approaches a constant non-dimensional pressure gradient, resulting in a flow in which the relative contribution of each term in the governing equations is independent of streamwise position over a domain larger than two boundary layer thickness. This allows the flow structures to undergo a development that is less dependent on the upstream flow history when compared to more rapidly decelerated boundary layers. This APG-TBL maintains an almost constant shape factor of H = 2.3 to 2.35 over a momentum thickness based Reynolds number range of Re δ 2 = 8420 to 12400. In the APG-TBL the production of turbulent kinetic energy is still mostly due to the correlation of streamwise and wall-normal fluctuations, 〈uv〉, however the contribution form the other components of the Reynolds stress tensor are no longer negligible. Statistical properties associated with the scale and location of sweeps and ejections in this APG-TBL are compared with those of a zero pressure gradient turbulent boundary layer developing from the same inlet profile, resulting in momentum thickness based range of Re δ 2 = 3400 to 3770. In the APG-TBL the peak in both the mean Reynolds stress and the production of turbulent kinetic energy move from the near wall region out to a point consistent with the displacement thickness height. This is associated with a narrower distribution of the Reynolds stress and a 1.6 times higher relative number of wall-detached negative uv structures. These structures occupy 5 times less of the boundary layer volume and show a similar reduction in their streamwise extent with respect to the boundary layer thickness. A significantly lower percentage

  20. ProBiS-2012: web server and web services for detection of structurally similar binding sites in proteins.

    Konc, Janez; Janezic, Dusanka

    2012-07-01

    The ProBiS web server is a web server for detection of structurally similar binding sites in the PDB and for local pairwise alignment of protein structures. In this article, we present a new version of the ProBiS web server that is 10 times faster than earlier versions, due to the efficient parallelization of the ProBiS algorithm, which now allows significantly faster comparison of a protein query against the PDB and reduces the calculation time for scanning the entire PDB from hours to minutes. It also features new web services, and an improved user interface. In addition, the new web server is united with the ProBiS-Database and thus provides instant access to pre-calculated protein similarity profiles for over 29 000 non-redundant protein structures. The ProBiS web server is particularly adept at detection of secondary binding sites in proteins. It is freely available at http://probis.cmm.ki.si/old-version, and the new ProBiS web server is at http://probis.cmm.ki.si.

  1. Collagen I self-assembly: revealing the developing structures that generate turbidity.

    Zhu, Jieling; Kaufman, Laura J

    2014-04-15

    Type I collagen gels are routinely used in biophysical studies and bioengineering applications. The structural and mechanical properties of these fibrillar matrices depend on the conditions under which collagen fibrillogenesis proceeds, and developing a fuller understanding of this process will enhance control over gel properties. Turbidity measurements have long been the method of choice for monitoring developing gels, whereas imaging methods are regularly used to visualize fully developed gels. In this study, turbidity and confocal reflectance microscopy (CRM) were simultaneously employed to track collagen fibrillogenesis and reconcile the information reported by the two techniques, with confocal fluorescence microscopy (CFM) used to supplement information about early events in fibrillogenesis. Time-lapse images of 0.5 mg/ml, 1.0 mg/ml, and 2.0 mg/ml acid-solubilized collagen I gels forming at 27°C, 32°C, and 37°C were collected. It was found that in situ turbidity measured in a scanning transmittance configuration was interchangeable with traditional turbidity measurements using a spectrophotometer. CRM and CFM were employed to reveal the structures responsible for the turbidity that develops during collagen self-assembly. Information from CRM and transmittance images was collapsed into straightforward single variables; total intensity in CRM images tracked turbidity development closely for all collagen gels investigated, and the two techniques were similarly sensitive to fibril number and dimension. Complementary CRM, CFM, and in situ turbidity measurements revealed that fibril and network formation occurred before substantial turbidity was present, and the majority of increasing turbidity during collagen self-assembly was due to increasing fibril thickness. Copyright © 2014 Biophysical Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. On the nature of structural disorder in calcium silicate hydrates with a calcium/silicon ratio similar to tobermorite

    Grangeon, Sylvain, E-mail: S.Grangeon@brgm.fr [BRGM, 3, Avenue Claude Guillemin, 45060 Orléans Cedex 2 (France); Claret, Francis; Lerouge, Catherine [BRGM, 3, Avenue Claude Guillemin, 45060 Orléans Cedex 2 (France); Warmont, Fabienne [CRMD, UMR 6619 – CNRS, 1b rue de la férollerie, 45071 Orléans Cedex 2 (France); Sato, Tsutomu; Anraku, Sohtaro [Laboratory of Environmental Geology, Research Group of Geoenvironmental/Engineering Division of Solid Waste, Resources and Geoenvironmental/Engineering Graduate School of Engineering, Hokkaido University, Kita 13 Nishi 8, Sapporo 060-8628 (Japan); Numako, Chiya [Faculty of Integrated Arts and Sciences, The University of Tokushima, 1-1, Minami-Josanjima, Tokushima, 770-8502 (Japan); Linard, Yannick [ANDRA, Centre de Meuse/Haute Marne, 55290 Bure (France); Lanson, Bruno [ISTerre, Grenoble University, CNRS, F-38041 Grenoble (France)

    2013-10-15

    Four calcium silicate hydrates (C-S-H) with structural calcium/silicon (Ca/Si) ratios ranging from 0.82 ± 0.02 to 0.87 ± 0.02 were synthesized at room temperature, 50, 80, and 110 °C. Their structure was elucidated by collating information from electron probe micro-analysis, transmission electron microscopy, extended X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy, and powder X-ray diffraction (XRD). A modeling approach specific to defective minerals was used because sample turbostratism prevented analysis using usual XRD refinement techniques (e.g. Rietveld analysis). It is shown that C-S-H with Ca/Si ratio of ∼ 0.8 are structurally similar to nano-crystalline turbostratic tobermorite, a naturally occurring mineral. Their structure thus consists of sheets of calcium atoms in 7-fold coordination, covered by ribbons of silicon tetrahedra with a dreierketten (wollastonite-like) organization. In these silicate ribbons, 0.42 Si per bridging tetrahedron are missing. Random stacking faults occur systematically between successive layers (turbostratic stacking). Layer-to-layer distance is equal to 11.34 Å. Crystallites have a mean size of 10 nm in the a–b plane, and a mean number of 2.6–2.9 layers stacked coherently along the c* axis.

  3. Effects of species' similarity and dominance on the functional and phylogenetic structure of a plant meta-community.

    Chalmandrier, L; Münkemüller, T; Lavergne, S; Thuiller, W

    2015-01-01

    Different assembly processes drive the spatial structure of meta-communities (beta-diversity). Recently, functional and phylogenetic diversities have been suggested as indicators of these assembly processes. Assuming that diversity is a good proxy for niche overlap, high beta-diversity along environmental gradients should be the result of environmental filtering while low beta-diversity should stem from competitive interactions. So far, studies trying to disentangle the relative importance of these assembly processes have provided mixed results. One reason for this may be that these studies often rely on a single measure of diversity and thus implicitly make a choice on how they account for species relative abundances and how species similarities are captured by functional traits or phylogeny. Here, we tested the effect of gradually scaling the importance of dominance (the weight given to dominant vs. rare species) and species similarity (the weight given to small vs. large similarities) on resulting beta-diversity patterns of an alpine plant meta-community. To this end, we combined recent extensions of the Hill numbers framework with Pagel's phylogenetic tree transformation approach. We included functional (based on the leaf-height-seed spectrum) and phylogenetic facets of beta-diversity in our analysis and explicitly accounted for effects of environmental and spatial covariates. We found that functional beta-diversity, was high when the same weight was given to dominant vs. rare species and to large vs. small species' similarities. In contrast, phylogenetic beta-diversity was low when greater weight was given to dominant species and small species' similarities. Those results suggested that different environments along the gradients filtered different species according to their functional traits, while, the same competitive lineages dominated communities across the gradients. Our results highlight that functional vs. phylogenetic facets, presence-absence vs

  4. Vaccinia protein F12 has structural similarity to kinesin light chain and contains a motor binding motif required for virion export.

    Gareth W Morgan

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Vaccinia virus (VACV uses microtubules for export of virions to the cell surface and this process requires the viral protein F12. Here we show that F12 has structural similarity to kinesin light chain (KLC, a subunit of the kinesin-1 motor that binds cargo. F12 and KLC share similar size, pI, hydropathy and cargo-binding tetratricopeptide repeats (TPRs. Moreover, molecular modeling of F12 TPRs upon the crystal structure of KLC2 TPRs showed a striking conservation of structure. We also identified multiple TPRs in VACV proteins E2 and A36. Data presented demonstrate that F12 is critical for recruitment of kinesin-1 to virions and that a conserved tryptophan and aspartic acid (WD motif, which is conserved in the kinesin-1-binding sequence (KBS of the neuronal protein calsyntenin/alcadein and several other cellular kinesin-1 binding proteins, is essential for kinesin-1 recruitment and virion transport. In contrast, mutation of WD motifs in protein A36 revealed they were not required for kinesin-1 recruitment or IEV transport. This report of a viral KLC-like protein containing a KBS that is conserved in several cellular proteins advances our understanding of how VACV recruits the kinesin motor to virions, and exemplifies how viruses use molecular mimicry of cellular components to their advantage.

  5. Probing multi-scale self-similarity of tissue structures using light scattering spectroscopy: prospects in pre-cancer detection

    Chatterjee, Subhasri; Das, Nandan K.; Kumar, Satish; Mohapatra, Sonali; Pradhan, Asima; Panigrahi, Prasanta K.; Ghosh, Nirmalya

    2013-02-01

    Multi-resolution analysis on the spatial refractive index inhomogeneities in the connective tissue regions of human cervix reveals clear signature of multifractality. We have thus developed an inverse analysis strategy for extraction and quantification of the multifractality of spatial refractive index fluctuations from the recorded light scattering signal. The method is based on Fourier domain pre-processing of light scattering data using Born approximation, and its subsequent analysis through Multifractal Detrended Fluctuation Analysis model. The method has been validated on several mono- and multi-fractal scattering objects whose self-similar properties are user controlled and known a-priori. Following successful validation, this approach has initially been explored for differentiating between different grades of precancerous human cervical tissues.

  6. Accurate protein structure annotation through competitive diffusion of enzymatic functions over a network of local evolutionary similarities.

    Eric Venner

    Full Text Available High-throughput Structural Genomics yields many new protein structures without known molecular function. This study aims to uncover these missing annotations by globally comparing select functional residues across the structural proteome. First, Evolutionary Trace Annotation, or ETA, identifies which proteins have local evolutionary and structural features in common; next, these proteins are linked together into a proteomic network of ETA similarities; then, starting from proteins with known functions, competing functional labels diffuse link-by-link over the entire network. Every node is thus assigned a likelihood z-score for every function, and the most significant one at each node wins and defines its annotation. In high-throughput controls, this competitive diffusion process recovered enzyme activity annotations with 99% and 97% accuracy at half-coverage for the third and fourth Enzyme Commission (EC levels, respectively. This corresponds to false positive rates 4-fold lower than nearest-neighbor and 5-fold lower than sequence-based annotations. In practice, experimental validation of the predicted carboxylesterase activity in a protein from Staphylococcus aureus illustrated the effectiveness of this approach in the context of an increasingly drug-resistant microbe. This study further links molecular function to a small number of evolutionarily important residues recognizable by Evolutionary Tracing and it points to the specificity and sensitivity of functional annotation by competitive global network diffusion. A web server is at http://mammoth.bcm.tmc.edu/networks.

  7. Large-scale structural and textual similarity-based mining of knowledge graph to predict drug-drug interactions

    Abdelaziz, Ibrahim; Fokoue, Achille; Hassanzadeh, Oktie; Zhang, Ping; Sadoghi, Mohammad

    2017-01-01

    Drug-Drug Interactions (DDIs) are a major cause of preventable Adverse Drug Reactions (ADRs), causing a significant burden on the patients’ health and the healthcare system. It is widely known that clinical studies cannot sufficiently and accurately identify DDIs for new drugs before they are made available on the market. In addition, existing public and proprietary sources of DDI information are known to be incomplete and/or inaccurate and so not reliable. As a result, there is an emerging body of research on in-silico prediction of drug-drug interactions. In this paper, we present Tiresias, a large-scale similarity-based framework that predicts DDIs through link prediction. Tiresias takes in various sources of drug-related data and knowledge as inputs, and provides DDI predictions as outputs. The process starts with semantic integration of the input data that results in a knowledge graph describing drug attributes and relationships with various related entities such as enzymes, chemical structures, and pathways. The knowledge graph is then used to compute several similarity measures between all the drugs in a scalable and distributed framework. In particular, Tiresias utilizes two classes of features in a knowledge graph: local and global features. Local features are derived from the information directly associated to each drug (i.e., one hop away) while global features are learnt by minimizing a global loss function that considers the complete structure of the knowledge graph. The resulting similarity metrics are used to build features for a large-scale logistic regression model to predict potential DDIs. We highlight the novelty of our proposed Tiresias and perform thorough evaluation of the quality of the predictions. The results show the effectiveness of Tiresias in both predicting new interactions among existing drugs as well as newly developed drugs.

  8. Large-scale structural and textual similarity-based mining of knowledge graph to predict drug-drug interactions

    Abdelaziz, Ibrahim

    2017-06-12

    Drug-Drug Interactions (DDIs) are a major cause of preventable Adverse Drug Reactions (ADRs), causing a significant burden on the patients’ health and the healthcare system. It is widely known that clinical studies cannot sufficiently and accurately identify DDIs for new drugs before they are made available on the market. In addition, existing public and proprietary sources of DDI information are known to be incomplete and/or inaccurate and so not reliable. As a result, there is an emerging body of research on in-silico prediction of drug-drug interactions. In this paper, we present Tiresias, a large-scale similarity-based framework that predicts DDIs through link prediction. Tiresias takes in various sources of drug-related data and knowledge as inputs, and provides DDI predictions as outputs. The process starts with semantic integration of the input data that results in a knowledge graph describing drug attributes and relationships with various related entities such as enzymes, chemical structures, and pathways. The knowledge graph is then used to compute several similarity measures between all the drugs in a scalable and distributed framework. In particular, Tiresias utilizes two classes of features in a knowledge graph: local and global features. Local features are derived from the information directly associated to each drug (i.e., one hop away) while global features are learnt by minimizing a global loss function that considers the complete structure of the knowledge graph. The resulting similarity metrics are used to build features for a large-scale logistic regression model to predict potential DDIs. We highlight the novelty of our proposed Tiresias and perform thorough evaluation of the quality of the predictions. The results show the effectiveness of Tiresias in both predicting new interactions among existing drugs as well as newly developed drugs.

  9. Structural similarities and functional differences clarify evolutionary relationships between tRNA healing enzymes and the myelin enzyme CNPase.

    Muruganandam, Gopinath; Raasakka, Arne; Myllykoski, Matti; Kursula, Inari; Kursula, Petri

    2017-05-16

    Eukaryotic tRNA splicing is an essential process in the transformation of a primary tRNA transcript into a mature functional tRNA molecule. 5'-phosphate ligation involves two steps: a healing reaction catalyzed by polynucleotide kinase (PNK) in association with cyclic phosphodiesterase (CPDase), and a sealing reaction catalyzed by an RNA ligase. The enzymes that catalyze tRNA healing in yeast and higher eukaryotes are homologous to the members of the 2H phosphoesterase superfamily, in particular to the vertebrate myelin enzyme 2',3'-cyclic nucleotide 3'-phosphodiesterase (CNPase). We employed different biophysical and biochemical methods to elucidate the overall structural and functional features of the tRNA healing enzymes yeast Trl1 PNK/CPDase and lancelet PNK/CPDase and compared them with vertebrate CNPase. The yeast and the lancelet enzymes have cyclic phosphodiesterase and polynucleotide kinase activity, while vertebrate CNPase lacks PNK activity. In addition, we also show that the healing enzymes are structurally similar to the vertebrate CNPase by applying synchrotron radiation circular dichroism spectroscopy and small-angle X-ray scattering. We provide a structural analysis of the tRNA healing enzyme PNK and CPDase domains together. Our results support evolution of vertebrate CNPase from tRNA healing enzymes with a loss of function at its N-terminal PNK-like domain.

  10. Multidimensional Riemann problem with self-similar internal structure. Part II - Application to hyperbolic conservation laws on unstructured meshes

    Balsara, Dinshaw S.; Dumbser, Michael

    2015-04-01

    Multidimensional Riemann solvers that have internal sub-structure in the strongly-interacting state have been formulated recently (D.S. Balsara (2012, 2014) [5,16]). Any multidimensional Riemann solver operates at the grid vertices and takes as its input all the states from its surrounding elements. It yields as its output an approximation of the strongly interacting state, as well as the numerical fluxes. The multidimensional Riemann problem produces a self-similar strongly-interacting state which is the result of several one-dimensional Riemann problems interacting with each other. To compute this strongly interacting state and its higher order moments we propose the use of a Galerkin-type formulation to compute the strongly interacting state and its higher order moments in terms of similarity variables. The use of substructure in the Riemann problem reduces numerical dissipation and, therefore, allows a better preservation of flow structures, like contact and shear waves. In this second part of a series of papers we describe how this technique is extended to unstructured triangular meshes. All necessary details for a practical computer code implementation are discussed. In particular, we explicitly present all the issues related to computational geometry. Because these Riemann solvers are Multidimensional and have Self-similar strongly-Interacting states that are obtained by Consistency with the conservation law, we call them MuSIC Riemann solvers. (A video introduction to multidimensional Riemann solvers is available on http://www.elsevier.com/xml/linking-roles/text/html". The MuSIC framework is sufficiently general to handle general nonlinear systems of hyperbolic conservation laws in multiple space dimensions. It can also accommodate all self-similar one-dimensional Riemann solvers and subsequently produces a multidimensional version of the same. In this paper we focus on unstructured triangular meshes. As examples of different systems of conservation laws we

  11. Three-dimensional structure of a Streptomyces sviceus GNAT acetyltransferase with similarity to the C-terminal domain of the human GH84 O-GlcNAcase

    He, Yuan; Roth, Christian; Turkenburg, Johan P.; Davies, Gideon J.

    2013-01-01

    The crystal structure of a bacterial acetyltransferase with 27% sequence identity to the C-terminal domain of human O-GlcNAcase has been solved at 1.5 Å resolution. This S. sviceus protein is compared with known GCN5-related acetyltransferases, adding to the diversity observed in this superfamily. The mammalian O-GlcNAc hydrolysing enzyme O-GlcNAcase (OGA) is a multi-domain protein with glycoside hydrolase activity in the N-terminus and with a C-terminal domain that has low sequence similarity to known acetyltransferases, prompting speculation, albeit controversial, that the C-terminal domain may function as a histone acetyltransferase (HAT). There are currently scarce data available regarding the structure and function of this C-terminal region. Here, a bacterial homologue of the human OGA C-terminal domain, an acetyltransferase protein (accession No. ZP-05014886) from Streptomyces sviceus (SsAT), was cloned and its crystal structure was solved to high resolution. The structure reveals a conserved protein core that has considerable structural homology to the acetyl-CoA (AcCoA) binding site of GCN5-related acetyltransferases (GNATs). Calorimetric data further confirm that SsAT is indeed able to bind AcCoA in solution with micromolar affinity. Detailed structural analysis provided insight into the binding of AcCoA. An acceptor-binding cavity was identified, indicating that the physiological substrate of SsAT may be a small molecule. Consistent with recently published work, the SsAT structure further questions a HAT function for the human OGA domain

  12. Three-dimensional structure of a Streptomyces sviceus GNAT acetyltransferase with similarity to the C-terminal domain of the human GH84 O-GlcNAcase

    He, Yuan [Northwest University, Xi’an 710069 (China); The University of York, York YO10 5DD (United Kingdom); Roth, Christian; Turkenburg, Johan P.; Davies, Gideon J., E-mail: gideon.davies@york.ac.uk [The University of York, York YO10 5DD (United Kingdom); Northwest University, Xi’an 710069 (China)

    2014-01-01

    The crystal structure of a bacterial acetyltransferase with 27% sequence identity to the C-terminal domain of human O-GlcNAcase has been solved at 1.5 Å resolution. This S. sviceus protein is compared with known GCN5-related acetyltransferases, adding to the diversity observed in this superfamily. The mammalian O-GlcNAc hydrolysing enzyme O-GlcNAcase (OGA) is a multi-domain protein with glycoside hydrolase activity in the N-terminus and with a C-terminal domain that has low sequence similarity to known acetyltransferases, prompting speculation, albeit controversial, that the C-terminal domain may function as a histone acetyltransferase (HAT). There are currently scarce data available regarding the structure and function of this C-terminal region. Here, a bacterial homologue of the human OGA C-terminal domain, an acetyltransferase protein (accession No. ZP-05014886) from Streptomyces sviceus (SsAT), was cloned and its crystal structure was solved to high resolution. The structure reveals a conserved protein core that has considerable structural homology to the acetyl-CoA (AcCoA) binding site of GCN5-related acetyltransferases (GNATs). Calorimetric data further confirm that SsAT is indeed able to bind AcCoA in solution with micromolar affinity. Detailed structural analysis provided insight into the binding of AcCoA. An acceptor-binding cavity was identified, indicating that the physiological substrate of SsAT may be a small molecule. Consistent with recently published work, the SsAT structure further questions a HAT function for the human OGA domain.

  13. Vacuum structure revealed by over-improved stout-link smearing compared with the overlap analysis for quenched QCD

    Ilgenfritz, E.M.; Leinweber, D.; Moran, P.; Koller, K.; Weinberg, V.; Freie Univ. Berlin

    2008-01-01

    A detailed comparison is made between the topological structure of quenched QCD as revealed by the recently proposed over-improved stout-link smearing in conjunction with an improved gluonic definition of the topological density on one hand and a similar analysis made possible by the overlap-fermionic topological charge density both with and without variable ultraviolet cutoff λ cut . The matching is twofold, provided by fitting the density-density two-point functions on one hand and by a point-by-point fitting of the topological densities according to the two methods. We point out the similar cluster structure of the topological density for moderate smearing and 200 MeV cut <600 MeV, respectively. We demonstrate the relation of the gluonic topological density for extensive smearing to the location of the overlap zero modes and the lowest overlap non-zero mode as found for the unsmeared configurations. (orig.)

  14. Vacuum structure revealed by over-improved stout-link smearing compared with the overlap analysis for quenched QCD

    Ilgenfritz, E.M.; Leinweber, D.; Moran, P. [Adelaide Univ., SA (AU). Special Research Centre for the Subatomic Structure of Matter (CSSM); Koller, K. [Muenchen Univ. (Germany). Sektion Physik; Schierholz, G. [Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron (DESY), Zeuthen (Germany). John von Neumann-Inst. fuer Computing NIC; Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron (DESY), Hamburg (Germany); Weinberg, V. [Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron (DESY), Zeuthen (Germany). John von Neumann-Inst. fuer Computing NIC; Freie Univ. Berlin (Germany). Inst. fuer Theoretische Physik

    2008-01-11

    A detailed comparison is made between the topological structure of quenched QCD as revealed by the recently proposed over-improved stout-link smearing in conjunction with an improved gluonic definition of the topological density on one hand and a similar analysis made possible by the overlap-fermionic topological charge density both with and without variable ultraviolet cutoff {lambda}{sub cut}. The matching is twofold, provided by fitting the density-density two-point functions on one hand and by a point-by-point fitting of the topological densities according to the two methods. We point out the similar cluster structure of the topological density for moderate smearing and 200 MeV<{lambda}{sub cut}<600 MeV, respectively. We demonstrate the relation of the gluonic topological density for extensive smearing to the location of the overlap zero modes and the lowest overlap non-zero mode as found for the unsmeared configurations. (orig.)

  15. Development of a NIR-based blend uniformity method for a drug product containing multiple structurally similar actives by using the quality by design principles.

    Lin, Yiqing; Li, Weiyong; Xu, Jin; Boulas, Pierre

    2015-07-05

    The aim of this study is to develop an at-line near infrared (NIR) method for the rapid and simultaneous determination of four structurally similar active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) in powder blends intended for the manufacturing of tablets. Two of the four APIs in the formula are present in relatively small amounts, one at 0.95% and the other at 0.57%. Such small amounts in addition to the similarity in structures add significant complexity to the blend uniformity analysis. The NIR method is developed using spectra from six laboratory-created calibration samples augmented by a small set of spectra from a large-scale blending sample. Applying the quality by design (QbD) principles, the calibration design included concentration variations of the four APIs and a main excipient, microcrystalline cellulose. A bench-top FT-NIR instrument was used to acquire the spectra. The obtained NIR spectra were analyzed by applying principal component analysis (PCA) before calibration model development. Score patterns from the PCA were analyzed to reveal relationship between latent variables and concentration variations of the APIs. In calibration model development, both PLS-1 and PLS-2 models were created and evaluated for their effectiveness in predicting API concentrations in the blending samples. The final NIR method shows satisfactory specificity and accuracy. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. STRUCTURE OF MAIN ARBOREAL SPECIES IN CRUCE CABALLERO PARK AND ITS FLORISTIC SIMILARITY WITH AREAS FROM ARGENTINE AND BRAZIL

    Román Carlos Ríos

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available The present work aimed to study the fitossociologic structure and floristic similarity among seasonal and mixed forests of Argentina and Brazil. Cruce Caballero Park with 522 hectares where the method of multiple plots was adopted with (20 x 10 m. In each plot all individual tree of size equal or heigher than 5 cm diameter were registered, being measured the stem diameter and height into three environmental compartments, Haplorthox, Ustorthent and Udorthent. In Haplorthox, Araucaria angustifolia (Bertol. Kuntze prevail at higher stratum and Sorocea bonplandii (Baill. W.C.Burger, Lanj. & Boer, Cabralea canjerana (Vell. Mart., Ocotea lancifolia Mez and Apuleia leiocarpa J.F.Macbr. follow it. In Ustorthent araucaria is absent and Gymnanthes concolor Müll.Arg., Trichilia claussenii C.DC., Apuleia leiocarpa, Pilocarpus pennatifolius Lem. and Sorocea bonplandii prevail. Aracuaria is scarce in Udorthent where Parapiptadenia rigida (Benth. Brenan, Alchornea triplinervia Müll.Arg., Luehea divaricata Mart., Erythrina falcata Benth. and Myrsine gardneriana A.DC. prevail. A comparative analysis shown Cruce Caballero more similar to seasonal forests than mixed araucaria forest from Brazil.

  17. Genome-wide comparative analysis reveals similar types of NBS genes in hybrid Citrus sinensis genome and original Citrus clementine genome and provides new insights into non-TIR NBS genes.

    Yunsheng Wang

    Full Text Available In this study, we identified and compared nucleotide-binding site (NBS domain-containing genes from three Citrus genomes (C. clementina, C. sinensis from USA and C. sinensis from China. Phylogenetic analysis of all Citrus NBS genes across these three genomes revealed that there are three approximately evenly numbered groups: one group contains the Toll-Interleukin receptor (TIR domain and two different Non-TIR groups in which most of proteins contain the Coiled Coil (CC domain. Motif analysis confirmed that the two groups of CC-containing NBS genes are from different evolutionary origins. We partitioned NBS genes into clades using NBS domain sequence distances and found most clades include NBS genes from all three Citrus genomes. This suggests that three Citrus genomes have similar numbers and types of NBS genes. We also mapped the re-sequenced reads of three pomelo and three mandarin genomes onto the C. sinensis genome. We found that most NBS genes of the hybrid C. sinensis genome have corresponding homologous genes in both pomelo and mandarin genomes. The homologous NBS genes in pomelo and mandarin suggest that the parental species of C. sinensis may contain similar types of NBS genes. This explains why the hybrid C. sinensis and original C. clementina have similar types of NBS genes in this study. Furthermore, we found that sequence variation amongst Citrus NBS genes were shaped by multiple independent and shared accelerated mutation accumulation events among different groups of NBS genes and in different Citrus genomes. Our comparative analyses yield valuable insight into the structure, organization and evolution of NBS genes in Citrus genomes. Furthermore, our comprehensive analysis showed that the non-TIR NBS genes can be divided into two groups that come from different evolutionary origins. This provides new insights into non-TIR genes, which have not received much attention.

  18. Structure-function similarities between a plant receptor-like kinase and the human interleukin-1 receptor-associated kinase-4.

    Klaus-Heisen, Dörte; Nurisso, Alessandra; Pietraszewska-Bogiel, Anna; Mbengue, Malick; Camut, Sylvie; Timmers, Ton; Pichereaux, Carole; Rossignol, Michel; Gadella, Theodorus W J; Imberty, Anne; Lefebvre, Benoit; Cullimore, Julie V

    2011-04-01

    Phylogenetic analysis has previously shown that plant receptor-like kinases (RLKs) are monophyletic with respect to the kinase domain and share an evolutionary origin with the animal interleukin-1 receptor-associated kinase/Pelle-soluble kinases. The lysin motif domain-containing receptor-like kinase-3 (LYK3) of the legume Medicago truncatula shows 33% amino acid sequence identity with human IRAK-4 over the kinase domain. Using the structure of this animal kinase as a template, homology modeling revealed that the plant RLK contains structural features particular to this group of kinases, including the tyrosine gatekeeper and the N-terminal extension α-helix B. Functional analysis revealed the importance of these conserved features for kinase activity and suggests that kinase activity is essential for the biological role of LYK3 in the establishment of the root nodule nitrogen-fixing symbiosis with rhizobia bacteria. The kinase domain of LYK3 has dual serine/threonine and tyrosine specificity, and mass spectrometry analysis identified seven serine, eight threonine, and one tyrosine residue as autophosphorylation sites in vitro. Three activation loop serine/threonine residues are required for biological activity, and molecular dynamics simulations suggest that Thr-475 is the prototypical phosphorylated residue that interacts with the conserved arginine in the catalytic loop, whereas Ser-471 and Thr-472 may be secondary sites. A threonine in the juxtamembrane region and two threonines in the C-terminal lobe of the kinase domain are important for biological but not kinase activity. We present evidence that the structure-function similarities that we have identified between LYK3 and IRAK-4 may be more widely applicable to plant RLKs in general.

  19. Adaptability and selectivity of human peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) pan agonists revealed from crystal structures

    Oyama, Takuji; Toyota, Kenji; Waku, Tsuyoshi; Hirakawa, Yuko; Nagasawa, Naoko; Kasuga, Jun-ichi; Hashimoto, Yuichi; Miyachi, Hiroyuki; Morikawa, Kosuke

    2009-01-01

    The structures of the ligand-binding domains (LBDs) of human peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARα, PPARγ and PPARδ) in complexes with a pan agonist, an α/δ dual agonist and a PPARδ-specific agonist were determined. The results explain how each ligand is recognized by the PPAR LBDs at an atomic level. Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs) belong to the nuclear hormone receptor family, which is defined as transcriptional factors that are activated by the binding of ligands to their ligand-binding domains (LBDs). Although the three PPAR subtypes display different tissue distribution patterns and distinct pharmacological profiles, they all are essentially related to fatty-acid and glucose metabolism. Since the PPARs share similar three-dimensional structures within the LBDs, synthetic ligands which simultaneously activate two or all of the PPARs could be potent candidates in terms of drugs for the treatment of abnormal metabolic homeostasis. The structures of several PPAR LBDs were determined in complex with synthetic ligands, derivatives of 3-(4-alkoxyphenyl)propanoic acid, which exhibit unique agonistic activities. The PPARα and PPARγ LBDs were complexed with the same pan agonist, TIPP-703, which activates all three PPARs and their crystal structures were determined. The two LBD–ligand complex structures revealed how the pan agonist is adapted to the similar, but significantly different, ligand-binding pockets of the PPARs. The structures of the PPARδ LBD in complex with an α/δ-selective ligand, TIPP-401, and with a related δ-specific ligand, TIPP-204, were also determined. The comparison between the two PPARδ complexes revealed how each ligand exhibits either a ‘dual selective’ or ‘single specific’ binding mode

  20. Fine-scale genetic structure and cryptic associations reveal evidence of kin-based sociality in the African forest elephant.

    Stephanie G Schuttler

    Full Text Available Spatial patterns of relatedness within animal populations are important in the evolution of mating and social systems, and have the potential to reveal information on species that are difficult to observe in the wild. This study examines the fine-scale genetic structure and connectivity of groups within African forest elephants, Loxodonta cyclotis, which are often difficult to observe due to forest habitat. We tested the hypothesis that genetic similarity will decline with increasing geographic distance, as we expect kin to be in closer proximity, using spatial autocorrelation analyses and Tau K(r tests. Associations between individuals were investigated through a non-invasive genetic capture-recapture approach using network models, and were predicted to be more extensive than the small groups found in observational studies, similar to fission-fusion sociality found in African savanna (Loxodonta africana and Asian (Elephas maximus species. Dung samples were collected in Lopé National Park, Gabon in 2008 and 2010 and genotyped at 10 microsatellite loci, genetically sexed, and sequenced at the mitochondrial DNA control region. We conducted analyses on samples collected at three different temporal scales: a day, within six-day sampling sessions, and within each year. Spatial autocorrelation and Tau K(r tests revealed genetic structure, but results were weak and inconsistent between sampling sessions. Positive spatial autocorrelation was found in distance classes of 0-5 km, and was strongest for the single day session. Despite weak genetic structure, individuals within groups were significantly more related to each other than to individuals between groups. Social networks revealed some components to have large, extensive groups of up to 22 individuals, and most groups were composed of individuals of the same matriline. Although fine-scale population genetic structure was weak, forest elephants are typically found in groups consisting of kin and

  1. Fine-scale genetic structure and cryptic associations reveal evidence of kin-based sociality in the African forest elephant.

    Schuttler, Stephanie G; Philbrick, Jessica A; Jeffery, Kathryn J; Eggert, Lori S

    2014-01-01

    Spatial patterns of relatedness within animal populations are important in the evolution of mating and social systems, and have the potential to reveal information on species that are difficult to observe in the wild. This study examines the fine-scale genetic structure and connectivity of groups within African forest elephants, Loxodonta cyclotis, which are often difficult to observe due to forest habitat. We tested the hypothesis that genetic similarity will decline with increasing geographic distance, as we expect kin to be in closer proximity, using spatial autocorrelation analyses and Tau K(r) tests. Associations between individuals were investigated through a non-invasive genetic capture-recapture approach using network models, and were predicted to be more extensive than the small groups found in observational studies, similar to fission-fusion sociality found in African savanna (Loxodonta africana) and Asian (Elephas maximus) species. Dung samples were collected in Lopé National Park, Gabon in 2008 and 2010 and genotyped at 10 microsatellite loci, genetically sexed, and sequenced at the mitochondrial DNA control region. We conducted analyses on samples collected at three different temporal scales: a day, within six-day sampling sessions, and within each year. Spatial autocorrelation and Tau K(r) tests revealed genetic structure, but results were weak and inconsistent between sampling sessions. Positive spatial autocorrelation was found in distance classes of 0-5 km, and was strongest for the single day session. Despite weak genetic structure, individuals within groups were significantly more related to each other than to individuals between groups. Social networks revealed some components to have large, extensive groups of up to 22 individuals, and most groups were composed of individuals of the same matriline. Although fine-scale population genetic structure was weak, forest elephants are typically found in groups consisting of kin and based on matrilines

  2. Revealing the correlation between real-space structure and chiral magnetic order at the atomic scale

    Hauptmann, Nadine; Dupé, Melanie; Hung, Tzu-Chao; Lemmens, Alexander K.; Wegner, Daniel; Dupé, Bertrand; Khajetoorians, Alexander A.

    2018-03-01

    We image simultaneously the geometric, the electronic, and the magnetic structures of a buckled iron bilayer film that exhibits chiral magnetic order. We achieve this by combining spin-polarized scanning tunneling microscopy and magnetic exchange force microscopy (SPEX) to independently characterize the geometric as well as the electronic and magnetic structures of nonflat surfaces. This new SPEX imaging technique reveals the geometric height corrugation of the reconstruction lines resulting from strong strain relaxation in the bilayer, enabling the decomposition of the real-space from the electronic structure at the atomic level and the correlation with the resultant spin-spiral ground state. By additionally utilizing adatom manipulation, we reveal the chiral magnetic ground state of portions of the unit cell that were not previously imaged with spin-polarized scanning tunneling microscopy alone. Using density functional theory, we investigate the structural and electronic properties of the reconstructed bilayer and identify the favorable stoichiometry regime in agreement with our experimental result.

  3. Hydra meiosis reveals unexpected conservation of structural synaptonemal complex proteins across metazoans

    Fraune, Johanna; Alsheimer, Manfred; Volff, Jean-Nicolas; Busch, Karoline; Fraune, Sebastian; Bosch, Thomas C. G.; Benavente, Ricardo

    2012-01-01

    The synaptonemal complex (SC) is a key structure of meiosis, mediating the stable pairing (synapsis) of homologous chromosomes during prophase I. Its remarkable tripartite structure is evolutionarily well conserved and can be found in almost all sexually reproducing organisms. However, comparison of the different SC protein components in the common meiosis model organisms Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Arabidopsis thaliana, Caenorhabditis elegans, Drosophila melanogaster, and Mus musculus revealed...

  4. Kinetic and Thermodynamic Rationale for SAHA Being a Preferential Human HDAC8 Inhibitor as Compared to the Structurally Similar Ligand, TSA

    Singh, Raushan K.; Lall, Naveena; Leedahl, Travis S.; McGillivray, Abigail; Mandal, Tanmay; Haldar, Manas; Mallik, Sanku; Cook, Gregory; Srivastava, D.K.

    2013-01-01

    Of the different hydroxamate-based histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors, Suberoylanilide hydroxamic acid (SAHA) has been approved by the FDA for treatment of T-cell lymphoma. Interestingly, a structurally similar inhibitor, Trichostatin A (TSA), which has a higher in vitro inhibitory-potency against HDAC8, reportedly shows a poor efficacy in clinical settings. In order to gain the molecular insight into the above discriminatory feature, we performed transient kinetic and isothermal titration calorimetric studies for the interaction of SAHA and TSA to the recombinant form of human HDAC8. The transient kinetic data revealed that the binding of both the inhibitors to the enzyme showed the biphasic profiles, which represented an initial encounter of enzyme with the inhibitor followed by the isomerization of the transient enzyme-inhibitor complexes. The temperature-dependent transient kinetic studies with the above inhibitors revealed that the bimolecular process is primarily dominated by favorable enthalpic changes, as opposed to the isomerization step; which is solely contributed by entropic changes. The standard binding-enthalpy (ΔH0) of SAHA, deduced from the transient kinetic as well as the isothermal titration calorimetric experiments, was 2–3 kcal/mol higher as compared to TSA. The experimental data presented herein suggests that SAHA serves as a preferential (target-specific/selective) HDAC8 inhibitor as compared to TSA. Arguments are presented that the detailed kinetic and thermodynamic studies may guide in the rational design of HDAC inhibitors as therapeutic agents. PMID:24079912

  5. Direct Patlak Reconstruction From Dynamic PET Data Using the Kernel Method With MRI Information Based on Structural Similarity.

    Gong, Kuang; Cheng-Liao, Jinxiu; Wang, Guobao; Chen, Kevin T; Catana, Ciprian; Qi, Jinyi

    2018-04-01

    Positron emission tomography (PET) is a functional imaging modality widely used in oncology, cardiology, and neuroscience. It is highly sensitive, but suffers from relatively poor spatial resolution, as compared with anatomical imaging modalities, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). With the recent development of combined PET/MR systems, we can improve the PET image quality by incorporating MR information into image reconstruction. Previously, kernel learning has been successfully embedded into static and dynamic PET image reconstruction using either PET temporal or MRI information. Here, we combine both PET temporal and MRI information adaptively to improve the quality of direct Patlak reconstruction. We examined different approaches to combine the PET and MRI information in kernel learning to address the issue of potential mismatches between MRI and PET signals. Computer simulations and hybrid real-patient data acquired on a simultaneous PET/MR scanner were used to evaluate the proposed methods. Results show that the method that combines PET temporal information and MRI spatial information adaptively based on the structure similarity index has the best performance in terms of noise reduction and resolution improvement.

  6. The structure of a conserved Piezo channel domain reveals a novel beta sandwich fold

    Kamajaya, Aron; Kaiser, Jens; Lee, Jonas; Reid, Michelle; Rees, Douglas C.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Piezo has recently been identified as a family of eukaryotic mechanosensitive channels composed of subunits containing over 2000 amino acids, without recognizable sequence similarity to other channels. Here, we present the crystal structure of a large, conserved extramembrane domain located just before the last predicted transmembrane helix of C. elegans PIEZO, which adopts a novel beta sandwich fold. The structure was also determined of a point mutation located on a conserved surface at the position equivalent to the human PIEZO1 mutation found in Dehydrated Hereditary Stomatocytosis (DHS) patients (M2225R). While the point mutation does not change the overall domain structure, it does alter the surface electrostatic potential that may perturb interactions with a yet-to-be identified ligand or protein. The lack of structural similarity between this domain and any previously characterized fold, including those of eukaryotic and bacterial channels, highlights the distinctive nature of the Piezo family of eukaryotic mechanosensitive channels. PMID:25242456

  7. Rangewide genetic analysis of Lesser Prairie-Chicken reveals population structure, range expansion, and possible introgression

    Oyler-McCance, Sara J.; DeYoung, Randall W; Fike, Jennifer; Hagen, Christian A.; Johnson, Jeff A.; Larsson, Lena C.; Patten, Michael

    2016-01-01

    The distribution of the Lesser Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) has been markedly reduced due to loss and fragmentation of habitat. Portions of the historical range, however, have been recolonized and even expanded due to planting of conservation reserve program (CRP) fields that provide favorable vegetation structure for Lesser Prairie-Chickens. The source population(s) feeding the range expansion is unknown, yet has resulted in overlap between Lesser and Greater Prairie-Chickens (T. cupido) increasing the potential for hybridization. Our objectives were to characterize connectivity and genetic diversity among populations, identify source population(s) of recent range expansion, and examine hybridization with the Greater Prairie-Chicken. We analyzed 640 samples from across the range using 13 microsatellites. We identified three to four populations corresponding largely to ecoregions. The Shinnery Oak Prairie and Sand Sagebrush Prairie represented genetically distinct populations (F ST > 0.034 and F ST > 0.023 respectively). The Shortgrass/CRP Mosaic and Mixed Grass ecoregions appeared admixed (F ST = 0.009). Genetic diversity was similar among ecoregions and N e ranged from 142 (95 % CI 99–236) for the Shortgrass/CRP Mosaic to 296 (95 % CI 233–396) in the Mixed Grass Prairie. No recent migration was detected among ecoregions, except asymmetric dispersal from both the Mixed Grass Prairie and to a lesser extent the Sand Sagebrush Prairie north into adjacent Shortgrass/CRP Mosaic (m = 0.207, 95 % CI 0.116–0.298, m = 0.097, 95 % CI 0.010–0.183, respectively). Indices investigating potential hybridization in the Shortgrass/CRP Mosaic revealed that six of the 13 individuals with hybrid phenotypes were significantly admixed suggesting hybridization. Continued monitoring of diversity within and among ecoregions is warranted as are actions promoting genetic connectivity and range expansion.

  8. Crystal structure of a small heat-shock protein from Xylella fastidiosa reveals a distinct high-order structure.

    Fonseca, Emanuella Maria Barreto; Scorsato, Valéria; Dos Santos, Marcelo Leite; Júnior, Atilio Tomazini; Tada, Susely Ferraz Siqueira; Dos Santos, Clelton Aparecido; de Toledo, Marcelo Augusto Szymanski; de Souza, Anete Pereira; Polikarpov, Igor; Aparicio, Ricardo

    2017-04-01

    Citrus variegated chlorosis is a disease that attacks economically important citrus plantations and is caused by the plant-pathogenic bacterium Xylella fastidiosa. In this work, the structure of a small heat-shock protein from X. fastidiosa (XfsHSP17.9) is reported. The high-order structures of small heat-shock proteins from other organisms are arranged in the forms of double-disc, hollow-sphere or spherical assemblies. Unexpectedly, the structure reported here reveals a high-order architecture forming a nearly square cavity.

  9. Sequencing of the needle transcriptome from Norway spruce (Picea abies Karst L. reveals lower substitution rates, but similar selective constraints in gymnosperms and angiosperms

    Chen Jun

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A detailed knowledge about spatial and temporal gene expression is important for understanding both the function of genes and their evolution. For the vast majority of species, transcriptomes are still largely uncharacterized and even in those where substantial information is available it is often in the form of partially sequenced transcriptomes. With the development of next generation sequencing, a single experiment can now simultaneously identify the transcribed part of a species genome and estimate levels of gene expression. Results mRNA from actively growing needles of Norway spruce (Picea abies was sequenced using next generation sequencing technology. In total, close to 70 million fragments with a length of 76 bp were sequenced resulting in 5 Gbp of raw data. A de novo assembly of these reads, together with publicly available expressed sequence tag (EST data from Norway spruce, was used to create a reference transcriptome. Of the 38,419 PUTs (putative unique transcripts longer than 150 bp in this reference assembly, 83.5% show similarity to ESTs from other spruce species and of the remaining PUTs, 3,704 show similarity to protein sequences from other plant species, leaving 4,167 PUTs with limited similarity to currently available plant proteins. By predicting coding frames and comparing not only the Norway spruce PUTs, but also PUTs from the close relatives Picea glauca and Picea sitchensis to both Pinus taeda and Taxus mairei, we obtained estimates of synonymous and non-synonymous divergence among conifer species. In addition, we detected close to 15,000 SNPs of high quality and estimated gene expression differences between samples collected under dark and light conditions. Conclusions Our study yielded a large number of single nucleotide polymorphisms as well as estimates of gene expression on transcriptome scale. In agreement with a recent study we find that the synonymous substitution rate per year (0.6 × 10

  10. In silico peptide-binding predictions of passerine MHC class I reveal similarities across distantly related species, suggesting convergence on the level of protein function.

    Follin, Elna; Karlsson, Maria; Lundegaard, Claus; Nielsen, Morten; Wallin, Stefan; Paulsson, Kajsa; Westerdahl, Helena

    2013-04-01

    The major histocompatibility complex (MHC) genes are the most polymorphic genes found in the vertebrate genome, and they encode proteins that play an essential role in the adaptive immune response. Many songbirds (passerines) have been shown to have a large number of transcribed MHC class I genes compared to most mammals. To elucidate the reason for this large number of genes, we compared 14 MHC class I alleles (α1-α3 domains), from great reed warbler, house sparrow and tree sparrow, via phylogenetic analysis, homology modelling and in silico peptide-binding predictions to investigate their functional and genetic relationships. We found more pronounced clustering of the MHC class I allomorphs (allele specific proteins) in regards to their function (peptide-binding specificities) compared to their genetic relationships (amino acid sequences), indicating that the high number of alleles is of functional significance. The MHC class I allomorphs from house sparrow and tree sparrow, species that diverged 10 million years ago (MYA), had overlapping peptide-binding specificities, and these similarities across species were also confirmed in phylogenetic analyses based on amino acid sequences. Notably, there were also overlapping peptide-binding specificities in the allomorphs from house sparrow and great reed warbler, although these species diverged 30 MYA. This overlap was not found in a tree based on amino acid sequences. Our interpretation is that convergent evolution on the level of the protein function, possibly driven by selection from shared pathogens, has resulted in allomorphs with similar peptide-binding repertoires, although trans-species evolution in combination with gene conversion cannot be ruled out.

  11. Structure of the first representative of Pfam family PF09410 (DUF2006) reveals a structural signature of the calycin superfamily that suggests a role in lipid metabolism

    Chiu, Hsiu-Ju; Bakolitsa, Constantina; Skerra, Arne; Lomize, Andrei; Carlton, Dennis; Miller, Mitchell D.; Krishna, S. Sri; Abdubek, Polat; Astakhova, Tamara; Axelrod, Herbert L.; Clayton, Thomas; Deller, Marc C.; Duan, Lian; Feuerhelm, Julie; Grant, Joanna C.; Grzechnik, Slawomir K.; Han, Gye Won; Jaroszewski, Lukasz; Jin, Kevin K.; Klock, Heath E.; Knuth, Mark W.; Kozbial, Piotr; Kumar, Abhinav; Marciano, David; McMullan, Daniel; Morse, Andrew T.; Nigoghossian, Edward; Okach, Linda; Paulsen, Jessica; Reyes, Ron; Rife, Christopher L.; Bedem, Henry van den; Weekes, Dana; Xu, Qingping; Hodgson, Keith O.; Wooley, John; Elsliger, Marc-André; Deacon, Ashley M.; Godzik, Adam; Lesley, Scott A.; Wilson, Ian A.

    2009-01-01

    NE1406, the first structural representative of PF09410, reveals a lipocalin-like fold with features that suggest involvement in lipid metabolism. In addition, NE1406 provides potential structural templates for two other protein families (PF07143 and PF08622). The first structural representative of the domain of unknown function DUF2006 family, also known as Pfam family PF09410, comprises a lipocalin-like fold with domain duplication. The finding of the calycin signature in the N-terminal domain, combined with remote sequence similarity to two other protein families (PF07143 and PF08622) implicated in isoprenoid metabolism and the oxidative stress response, support an involvement in lipid metabolism. Clusters of conserved residues that interact with ligand mimetics suggest that the binding and regulation sites map to the N-terminal domain and to the interdomain interface, respectively

  12. 5-HT2C Receptor Structures Reveal the Structural Basis of GPCR Polypharmacology

    Peng, Yao; Mccorvy, John D.; Harpsøe, Kasper

    2018-01-01

    Drugs frequently require interactions with multiple targets—via a process known as polypharmacology—to achieve their therapeutic actions. Currently, drugs targeting several serotonin receptors, including the 5-HT2C receptor, are useful for treating obesity, drug abuse, and schizophrenia. The comp...... the structural basis of polypharmacology at canonical GPCRs and illustrates how understanding characteristic patterns of ligand-receptor interaction and activation may ultimately facilitate drug design at multiple GPCRs....

  13. Structural fragment clustering reveals novel structural and functional motifs in α-helical transmembrane proteins

    Vassilev Boris

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A large proportion of an organism's genome encodes for membrane proteins. Membrane proteins are important for many cellular processes, and several diseases can be linked to mutations in them. With the tremendous growth of sequence data, there is an increasing need to reliably identify membrane proteins from sequence, to functionally annotate them, and to correctly predict their topology. Results We introduce a technique called structural fragment clustering, which learns sequential motifs from 3D structural fragments. From over 500,000 fragments, we obtain 213 statistically significant, non-redundant, and novel motifs that are highly specific to α-helical transmembrane proteins. From these 213 motifs, 58 of them were assigned to function and checked in the scientific literature for a biological assessment. Seventy percent of the motifs are found in co-factor, ligand, and ion binding sites, 30% at protein interaction interfaces, and 12% bind specific lipids such as glycerol or cardiolipins. The vast majority of motifs (94% appear across evolutionarily unrelated families, highlighting the modularity of functional design in membrane proteins. We describe three novel motifs in detail: (1 a dimer interface motif found in voltage-gated chloride channels, (2 a proton transfer motif found in heme-copper oxidases, and (3 a convergently evolved interface helix motif found in an aspartate symporter, a serine protease, and cytochrome b. Conclusions Our findings suggest that functional modules exist in membrane proteins, and that they occur in completely different evolutionary contexts and cover different binding sites. Structural fragment clustering allows us to link sequence motifs to function through clusters of structural fragments. The sequence motifs can be applied to identify and characterize membrane proteins in novel genomes.

  14. Crystal Structure of the FGFR4/LY2874455 Complex Reveals Insights into the Pan-FGFR Selectivity of LY2874455.

    Wu, Daichao; Guo, Ming; Philips, Michael A; Qu, Lingzhi; Jiang, Longying; Li, Jun; Chen, Xiaojuan; Chen, Zhuchu; Chen, Lin; Chen, Yongheng

    2016-01-01

    Aberrant FGFR4 signaling has been documented abundantly in various human cancers. The majority of FGFR inhibitors display significantly reduced potency toward FGFR4 compared to FGFR1-3. However, LY2874455 has similar inhibition potency for FGFR1-4 with IC50 less than 6.4 nM. To date, there is no published crystal structure of LY2874455 in complex with any kinase. To better understand the pan-FGFR selectivity of LY2874455, we have determined the crystal structure of the FGFR4 kinase domain bound to LY2874455 at a resolution of 2.35 Å. LY2874455, a type I inhibitor for FGFR4, binds to the ATP-binding pocket of FGFR4 in a DFG-in active conformation with three hydrogen bonds and a number of van der Waals contacts. After alignment of the kinase domain sequence of 4 FGFRs, and superposition of the ATP binding pocket of 4 FGFRs, our structural analyses reveal that the interactions of LY2874455 to FGFR4 are largely conserved in 4 FGFRs, explaining at least partly, the broad inhibitory activity of LY2874455 toward 4 FGFRs. Consequently, our studies reveal new insights into the pan-FGFR selectivity of LY2874455 and provide a structural basis for developing novel FGFR inhibitors that target FGFR1-4 broadly.

  15. Age-Related Changes in Locomotor Performance Reveal a Similar Pattern for Caenorhabditis elegans, Mus domesticus, Canis familiaris, Equus caballus, and Homo sapiens.

    Marck, Adrien; Berthelot, Geoffroy; Foulonneau, Vincent; Marc, Andy; Antero-Jacquemin, Juliana; Noirez, Philippe; Bronikowski, Anne M; Morgan, Theodore J; Garland, Theodore; Carter, Patrick A; Hersen, Pascal; Di Meglio, Jean-Marc; Toussaint, Jean-François

    2017-04-01

    Locomotion is one of the major physiological functions for most animals. Previous studies have described aging mechanisms linked to locomotor performance among different species. However, the precise dynamics of these age-related changes, and their interactions with development and senescence, are largely unknown. Here, we use the same conceptual framework to describe locomotor performances in Caenorhabditis elegans, Mus domesticus, Canis familiaris, Equus caballus, and Homo sapiens. We show that locomotion is a consistent biomarker of age-related changes, with an asymmetrical pattern throughout life, regardless of the type of effort or its duration. However, there is variation (i) among species for the same mode of locomotion, (ii) within species for different modes of locomotion, and (iii) among individuals of the same species for the same mode of locomotion. Age-related patterns are modulated by genetic (such as selective breeding) as well as environmental conditions (such as temperature). However, in all cases, the intersection of the rising developmental phase and the declining senescent phase reveals neither a sharp transition nor a plateau, but a smooth transition, emphasizing a crucial moment: the age at peak performance. This transition may define a specific target for future investigations on the dynamics of such biological interactions. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Gerontological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  16. In vivo genome-wide profiling of RNA secondary structure reveals novel regulatory features.

    Ding, Yiliang; Tang, Yin; Kwok, Chun Kit; Zhang, Yu; Bevilacqua, Philip C; Assmann, Sarah M

    2014-01-30

    RNA structure has critical roles in processes ranging from ligand sensing to the regulation of translation, polyadenylation and splicing. However, a lack of genome-wide in vivo RNA structural data has limited our understanding of how RNA structure regulates gene expression in living cells. Here we present a high-throughput, genome-wide in vivo RNA structure probing method, structure-seq, in which dimethyl sulphate methylation of unprotected adenines and cytosines is identified by next-generation sequencing. Application of this method to Arabidopsis thaliana seedlings yielded the first in vivo genome-wide RNA structure map at nucleotide resolution for any organism, with quantitative structural information across more than 10,000 transcripts. Our analysis reveals a three-nucleotide periodic repeat pattern in the structure of coding regions, as well as a less-structured region immediately upstream of the start codon, and shows that these features are strongly correlated with translation efficiency. We also find patterns of strong and weak secondary structure at sites of alternative polyadenylation, as well as strong secondary structure at 5' splice sites that correlates with unspliced events. Notably, in vivo structures of messenger RNAs annotated for stress responses are poorly predicted in silico, whereas mRNA structures of genes related to cell function maintenance are well predicted. Global comparison of several structural features between these two categories shows that the mRNAs associated with stress responses tend to have more single-strandedness, longer maximal loop length and higher free energy per nucleotide, features that may allow these RNAs to undergo conformational changes in response to environmental conditions. Structure-seq allows the RNA structurome and its biological roles to be interrogated on a genome-wide scale and should be applicable to any organism.

  17. The crystal structures of EAP domains from Staphylococcus aureus reveal an unexpected homology to bacterial superantigens.

    Geisbrecht, Brian V; Hamaoka, Brent Y; Perman, Benjamin; Zemla, Adam; Leahy, Daniel J

    2005-04-29

    The Eap (extracellular adherence protein) of Staphylococcus aureus functions as a secreted virulence factor by mediating interactions between the bacterial cell surface and several extracellular host proteins. Eap proteins from different Staphylococcal strains consist of four to six tandem repeats of a structurally uncharacterized domain (EAP domain). We have determined the three-dimensional structures of three different EAP domains to 1.8, 2.2, and 1.35 A resolution, respectively. These structures reveal a core fold that is comprised of an alpha-helix lying diagonally across a five-stranded, mixed beta-sheet. Comparison of EAP domains with known structures reveals an unexpected homology with the C-terminal domain of bacterial superantigens. Examination of the structure of the superantigen SEC2 bound to the beta-chain of a T-cell receptor suggests a possible ligand-binding site within the EAP domain (Fields, B. A., Malchiodi, E. L., Li, H., Ysern, X., Stauffacher, C. V., Schlievert, P. M., Karjalainen, K., and Mariuzza, R. (1996) Nature 384, 188-192). These results provide the first structural characterization of EAP domains, relate EAP domains to a large class of bacterial toxins, and will guide the design of future experiments to analyze EAP domain structure/function relationships.

  18. Hydra meiosis reveals unexpected conservation of structural synaptonemal complex proteins across metazoans.

    Fraune, Johanna; Alsheimer, Manfred; Volff, Jean-Nicolas; Busch, Karoline; Fraune, Sebastian; Bosch, Thomas C G; Benavente, Ricardo

    2012-10-09

    The synaptonemal complex (SC) is a key structure of meiosis, mediating the stable pairing (synapsis) of homologous chromosomes during prophase I. Its remarkable tripartite structure is evolutionarily well conserved and can be found in almost all sexually reproducing organisms. However, comparison of the different SC protein components in the common meiosis model organisms Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Arabidopsis thaliana, Caenorhabditis elegans, Drosophila melanogaster, and Mus musculus revealed no sequence homology. This discrepancy challenged the hypothesis that the SC arose only once in evolution. To pursue this matter we focused on the evolution of SYCP1 and SYCP3, the two major structural SC proteins of mammals. Remarkably, our comparative bioinformatic and expression studies revealed that SYCP1 and SYCP3 are also components of the SC in the basal metazoan Hydra. In contrast to previous assumptions, we therefore conclude that SYCP1 and SYCP3 form monophyletic groups of orthologous proteins across metazoans.

  19. Live-cell imaging of dual-labeled Golgi stacks in tobacco BY-2 cells reveals similar behaviors for different cisternae during movement and brefeldin A treatment.

    Madison, Stephanie L; Nebenführ, Andreas

    2011-09-01

    In plant cells, the Golgi apparatus consists of numerous stacks that, in turn, are composed of several flattened cisternae with a clear cis-to-trans polarity. During normal functioning within living cells, this unusual organelle displays a wide range of dynamic behaviors such as whole stack motility, constant membrane flux through the cisternae, and Golgi enzyme recycling through the ER. In order to further investigate various aspects of Golgi stack dynamics and integrity, we co-expressed pairs of established Golgi markers in tobacco BY-2 cells to distinguish sub-compartments of the Golgi during monensin treatments, movement, and brefeldin A (BFA)-induced disassembly. A combination of cis and trans markers revealed that Golgi stacks remain intact as they move through the cytoplasm. The Golgi stack orientation during these movements showed a slight preference for the cis side moving ahead, but trans cisternae were also found at the leading edge. During BFA treatments, the different sub-compartments of about half of the observed stacks fused with the ER sequentially; however, no consistent order could be detected. In contrast, the ionophore monensin resulted in swelling of trans cisternae while medial and particularly cis cisternae were mostly unaffected. Our results thus demonstrate a remarkable equivalence of the different cisternae with respect to movement and BFA-induced fusion with the ER. In addition, we propose that a combination of dual-label fluorescence microscopy and drug treatments can provide a simple alternative approach to the determination of protein localization to specific Golgi sub-compartments.

  20. High-resolution structure of TBP with TAF1 reveals anchoring patterns in transcriptional regulation.

    Anandapadamanaban, Madhanagopal; Andresen, Cecilia; Helander, Sara; Ohyama, Yoshifumi; Siponen, Marina I; Lundström, Patrik; Kokubo, Tetsuro; Ikura, Mitsuhiko; Moche, Martin; Sunnerhagen, Maria

    2013-08-01

    The general transcription factor TFIID provides a regulatory platform for transcription initiation. Here we present the crystal structure (1.97 Å) and NMR analysis of yeast TAF1 N-terminal domains TAND1 and TAND2 bound to yeast TBP, together with mutational data. We find that yeast TAF1-TAND1, which in itself acts as a transcriptional activator, binds TBP's concave DNA-binding surface by presenting similar anchor residues to TBP as does Mot1 but from a distinct structural scaffold. Furthermore, we show how TAF1-TAND2 uses an aromatic and acidic anchoring pattern to bind a conserved TBP surface groove traversing the basic helix region, and we find highly similar TBP-binding motifs also presented by the structurally distinct TFIIA, Mot1 and Brf1 proteins. Our identification of these anchoring patterns, which can be easily disrupted or enhanced, provides insight into the competitive multiprotein TBP interplay critical to transcriptional regulation.

  1. Cryogenic EBSD reveals structure of directionally solidified ice–polymer composite

    Donius, Amalie E.; Obbard, Rachel W.; Burger, Joan N.; Hunger, Philipp M.; Baker, Ian; Doherty, Roger D.; Wegst, Ulrike G.K.

    2014-01-01

    Despite considerable research efforts on directionally solidified or freeze-cast materials in recent years, little fundamental knowledge has been gained that links model with experiment. In this contribution, the cryogenic characterization of directionally solidified polymer solutions illustrates, how powerful cryo-scanning electron microscopy combined with electron backscatter diffraction is for the structural characterization of ice–polymer composite materials. Under controlled sublimation, the freeze-cast polymer scaffold structure is revealed and imaged with secondary electrons. Electron backscatter diffraction fabric analysis shows that the ice crystals, which template the polymer scaffold and create the lamellar structure, have a-axes oriented parallel to the direction of solidification and the c-axes perpendicular to it. These results indicate the great potential of both cryo-scanning electron microscopy and cryo-electron backscatter diffraction in gaining fundamental knowledge of structure–property–processing correlations. - Highlights: • Cryo-SEM of freeze-cast polymer solution reveals an ice-templated structure. • Cryo-EBSD reveals the ice crystal a-axis to parallel the solidification direction. • The honeycomb-like polymer phase favors columnar ridges only on one side. • Combining cryo-SEM with EBSD links solidification theory with experiment

  2. Cryogenic EBSD reveals structure of directionally solidified ice–polymer composite

    Donius, Amalie E., E-mail: amalie.donius@gmail.com [Thayer School of Engineering, Dartmouth College, 14 Engineering Drive, Hanover, NH 03755 (United States); Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Drexel University, 3141 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104 (United States); Obbard, Rachel W., E-mail: Rachel.W.Obbard@dartmouth.edu [Thayer School of Engineering, Dartmouth College, 14 Engineering Drive, Hanover, NH 03755 (United States); Burger, Joan N., E-mail: ridge.of.the.ancients@gmail.com [Thayer School of Engineering, Dartmouth College, 14 Engineering Drive, Hanover, NH 03755 (United States); Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Drexel University, 3141 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104 (United States); Hunger, Philipp M., E-mail: philipp.m.hunger@gmail.com [Thayer School of Engineering, Dartmouth College, 14 Engineering Drive, Hanover, NH 03755 (United States); Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Drexel University, 3141 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104 (United States); Baker, Ian, E-mail: Ian.Baker@dartmouth.edu [Thayer School of Engineering, Dartmouth College, 14 Engineering Drive, Hanover, NH 03755 (United States); Doherty, Roger D., E-mail: dohertrd@drexel.edu [Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Drexel University, 3141 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104 (United States); Wegst, Ulrike G.K., E-mail: ulrike.wegst@dartmouth.edu [Thayer School of Engineering, Dartmouth College, 14 Engineering Drive, Hanover, NH 03755 (United States)

    2014-07-01

    Despite considerable research efforts on directionally solidified or freeze-cast materials in recent years, little fundamental knowledge has been gained that links model with experiment. In this contribution, the cryogenic characterization of directionally solidified polymer solutions illustrates, how powerful cryo-scanning electron microscopy combined with electron backscatter diffraction is for the structural characterization of ice–polymer composite materials. Under controlled sublimation, the freeze-cast polymer scaffold structure is revealed and imaged with secondary electrons. Electron backscatter diffraction fabric analysis shows that the ice crystals, which template the polymer scaffold and create the lamellar structure, have a-axes oriented parallel to the direction of solidification and the c-axes perpendicular to it. These results indicate the great potential of both cryo-scanning electron microscopy and cryo-electron backscatter diffraction in gaining fundamental knowledge of structure–property–processing correlations. - Highlights: • Cryo-SEM of freeze-cast polymer solution reveals an ice-templated structure. • Cryo-EBSD reveals the ice crystal a-axis to parallel the solidification direction. • The honeycomb-like polymer phase favors columnar ridges only on one side. • Combining cryo-SEM with EBSD links solidification theory with experiment.

  3. Structure of protease-cleaved Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin reveals a putative mechanism of conformational activation for protease entrapment

    Fyfe, Cameron D.; Grinter, Rhys; Josts, Inokentijs; Mosbahi, Khedidja [University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Scotland (United Kingdom); Roszak, Aleksander W. [University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Scotland (United Kingdom); University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Scotland (United Kingdom); Cogdell, Richard J.; Wall, Daniel M.; Burchmore, Richard J. S.; Byron, Olwyn; Walker, Daniel, E-mail: daniel.walker@glasgow.ac.uk [University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Scotland (United Kingdom)

    2015-06-30

    The X-ray structure of protease-cleaved E. coli α-2-macroglobulin is described, which reveals a putative mechanism of activation and conformational change essential for protease inhibition. Bacterial α-2-macroglobulins have been suggested to function in defence as broad-spectrum inhibitors of host proteases that breach the outer membrane. Here, the X-ray structure of protease-cleaved Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin is described, which reveals a putative mechanism of activation and conformational change essential for protease inhibition. In this competitive mechanism, protease cleavage of the bait-region domain results in the untethering of an intrinsically disordered region of this domain which disrupts native interdomain interactions that maintain E. coli α-2-macroglobulin in the inactivated form. The resulting global conformational change results in entrapment of the protease and activation of the thioester bond that covalently links to the attacking protease. Owing to the similarity in structure and domain architecture of Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin and human α-2-macroglobulin, this protease-activation mechanism is likely to operate across the diverse members of this group.

  4. Structure of protease-cleaved Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin reveals a putative mechanism of conformational activation for protease entrapment

    Fyfe, Cameron D.; Grinter, Rhys; Josts, Inokentijs; Mosbahi, Khedidja; Roszak, Aleksander W.; Cogdell, Richard J.; Wall, Daniel M.; Burchmore, Richard J. S.; Byron, Olwyn; Walker, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    The X-ray structure of protease-cleaved E. coli α-2-macroglobulin is described, which reveals a putative mechanism of activation and conformational change essential for protease inhibition. Bacterial α-2-macroglobulins have been suggested to function in defence as broad-spectrum inhibitors of host proteases that breach the outer membrane. Here, the X-ray structure of protease-cleaved Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin is described, which reveals a putative mechanism of activation and conformational change essential for protease inhibition. In this competitive mechanism, protease cleavage of the bait-region domain results in the untethering of an intrinsically disordered region of this domain which disrupts native interdomain interactions that maintain E. coli α-2-macroglobulin in the inactivated form. The resulting global conformational change results in entrapment of the protease and activation of the thioester bond that covalently links to the attacking protease. Owing to the similarity in structure and domain architecture of Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin and human α-2-macroglobulin, this protease-activation mechanism is likely to operate across the diverse members of this group

  5. The Structure of the Poxvirus A33 Protein Reveals a Dimer of Unique C-Type Lectin-Like Domains

    Su, Hua-Poo; Singh, Kavita; Gittis, Apostolos G.; Garboczi, David N. (NIH)

    2010-11-03

    The current vaccine against smallpox is an infectious form of vaccinia virus that has significant side effects. Alternative vaccine approaches using recombinant viral proteins are being developed. A target of subunit vaccine strategies is the poxvirus protein A33, a conserved protein in the Chordopoxvirinae subfamily of Poxviridae that is expressed on the outer viral envelope. Here we have determined the structure of the A33 ectodomain of vaccinia virus. The structure revealed C-type lectin-like domains (CTLDs) that occur as dimers in A33 crystals with five different crystal lattices. Comparison of the A33 dimer models shows that the A33 monomers have a degree of flexibility in position within the dimer. Structural comparisons show that the A33 monomer is a close match to the Link module class of CTLDs but that the A33 dimer is most similar to the natural killer (NK)-cell receptor class of CTLDs. Structural data on Link modules and NK-cell receptor-ligand complexes suggest a surface of A33 that could interact with viral or host ligands. The dimer interface is well conserved in all known A33 sequences, indicating an important role for the A33 dimer. The structure indicates how previously described A33 mutations disrupt protein folding and locates the positions of N-linked glycosylations and the epitope of a protective antibody.

  6. Two-dimensional sum-frequency generation (2D SFG) reveals structure and dynamics of a surface-bound peptide

    Laaser, Jennifer E.; Skoff, David R.; Ho, Jia-Jung; Joo, Yongho; Serrano, Arnaldo L.; Steinkruger, Jay D.; Gopalan, Padma; Gellman, Samuel H.; Zanni, Martin T.

    2014-01-01

    Surface-bound polypeptides and proteins are increasingly used to functionalize inorganic interfaces such as electrodes, but their structural characterization is exceedingly difficult with standard technologies. In this paper, we report the first two-dimensional sum-frequency generation (2D SFG) spectra of a peptide monolayer, which is collected by adding a mid-IR pulse shaper to a standard femtosecond SFG spectrometer. On a gold surface, standard FTIR spectroscopy is inconclusive about the peptide structure because of solvation-induced frequency shifts, but the 2D lineshapes, anharmonic shifts, and lifetimes obtained from 2D SFG reveal that the peptide is largely α-helical and upright. Random coil residues are also observed, which do not themselves appear in SFG spectra due to their isotropic structural distribution, but which still absorb infrared light and so can be detected by cross-peaks in 2D SFG spectra. We discuss these results in the context of peptide design. Because of the similar way in which the spectra are collected, these 2D SFG spectra can be directly compared to 2D IR spectra, thereby enabling structural interpretations of surface-bound peptides and biomolecules based on the well-studied structure/2D IR spectra relationships established from soluble proteins. PMID:24372101

  7. Atomic-scale structure of dislocations revealed by scanning tunneling microscopy and molecular dynamics

    Christiansen, Jesper; Morgenstern, K.; Schiøtz, Jakob

    2002-01-01

    The intersection between dislocations and a Ag(111) surface has been studied using an interplay of scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) and molecular dynamics. Whereas the STM provides atomically resolved information about the surface structure and Burgers vectors of the dislocations, the simulati......The intersection between dislocations and a Ag(111) surface has been studied using an interplay of scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) and molecular dynamics. Whereas the STM provides atomically resolved information about the surface structure and Burgers vectors of the dislocations......, the simulations can be used to determine dislocation structure and orientation in the near-surface region. In a similar way, the subsurface structure of other extended defects can be studied. The simulations show dislocations to reorient the partials in the surface region leading to an increased splitting width...

  8. Phylogeographic analysis reveals significant spatial genetic structure of Incarvillea sinensis as a product of mountain building

    Chen Shaotian

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Incarvillea sinensis is widely distributed from Southwest China to Northeast China and in the Russian Far East. The distribution of this species was thought to be influenced by the uplift of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and Quaternary glaciation. To reveal the imprints of geological events on the spatial genetic structure of Incarvillea sinensis, we examined two cpDNA segments ( trnH- psbA and trnS- trnfM in 705 individuals from 47 localities. Results A total of 16 haplotypes was identified, and significant genetic differentiation was revealed (GST =0.843, NST = 0.975, P  Conclusions The results revealed that the uplift of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau likely resulted in the significant divergence between the lineage in the eastern Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and the other one outside this area. The diverse niches in the eastern Qinghai-Tibet Plateau created a wide spectrum of habitats to accumulate and accommodate new mutations. The features of genetic diversity of populations outside the eastern Qinghai-Tibet Plateau seemed to reveal the imprints of extinction during the Glacial and the interglacial and postglacial recolonization. Our study is a typical case of the significance of the uplift of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and the Quaternary Glacial in spatial genetic structure of eastern Asian plants, and sheds new light on the evolution of biodiversity in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau at the intraspecies level.

  9. Cloud top structure of Venus revealed by Subaru/COMICS mid-infrared images

    Sato, T. M.; Sagawa, H.; Kouyama, T.; Mitsuyama, K.; Satoh, T.; Ohtsuki, S.; Ueno, M.; Kasaba, Y.; Nakamura, M.; Imamura, T.

    2014-11-01

    We have investigated the cloud top structure of Venus by analyzing ground-based images taken at the mid-infrared wavelengths of 8.66 μm and 11.34 μm. Venus at a solar phase angle of ∼90°, with the morning terminator in view, was observed by the Cooled Mid-Infrared Camera and Spectrometer (COMICS), mounted on the 8.2-m Subaru Telescope, during the period October 25-29, 2007. The disk-averaged brightness temperatures for the observation period are ∼230 K and ∼238 K at 8.66 μm and 11.34 μm, respectively. The obtained images with good signal-to-noise ratio and with high spatial resolution (∼200 km at the sub-observer point) provide several important findings. First, we present observational evidence, for the first time, of the possibility that the westward rotation of the polar features (the hot polar spots and the surrounding cold collars) is synchronized between the northern and southern hemispheres. Second, after high-pass filtering, the images reveal that streaks and mottled and patchy patterns are distributed over the entire disk, with typical amplitudes of ∼0.5 K, and vary from day to day. The detected features, some of which are similar to those seen in past UV images, result from inhomogeneities of both the temperature and the cloud top altitude. Third, the equatorial center-to-limb variations of brightness temperatures have a systematic day-night asymmetry, except those on October 25, that the dayside brightness temperatures are higher than the nightside brightness temperatures by 0-4 K under the same viewing geometry. Such asymmetry would be caused by the propagation of the migrating semidiurnal tide. Finally, by applying the lapse rates deduced from previous studies, we demonstrate that the equatorial center-to-limb curves in the two spectral channels give access to two parameters: the cloud scale height H and the cloud top altitude zc. The acceptable models for data on October 25 are obtained at H = 2.4-4.3 km and zc = 66-69 km; this supports

  10. Limited tryptic proteolysis of the benzodiazepine binding proteins in different species reveals structural homologies.

    Friedl, W; Lentes, K U; Schmitz, E; Propping, P; Hebebrand, J

    1988-12-01

    Peptide mapping can be used to elucidate further the structural similarities of the benzodiazepine binding proteins in different vertebrate species. Crude synaptic membrane preparations were photoaffinity-labeled with [3H]flunitrazepam and subsequently degraded with various concentrations of trypsin. Sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis followed by fluorography allowed a comparison of the molecular weights of photolabeled peptides in different species. Tryptic degradation led to a common peptide of 40K in all species investigated, a finding indicating that the benzodiazepine binding proteins are structurally homologous in higher bony fishes and tetrapods.

  11. Eigenspaces of networks reveal the overlapping and hierarchical community structure more precisely

    Ma, Xiaoke; Gao, Lin; Yong, Xuerong

    2010-01-01

    Identifying community structure is fundamental for revealing the structure–functionality relationship in complex networks, and spectral algorithms have been shown to be powerful for this purpose. In a traditional spectral algorithm, each vertex of a network is embedded into a spectral space by making use of the eigenvectors of the adjacency matrix or Laplacian matrix of the graph. In this paper, a novel spectral approach for revealing the overlapping and hierarchical community structure of complex networks is proposed by not only using the eigenvalues and eigenvectors but also the properties of eigenspaces of the networks involved. This gives us a better characterization of community. We first show that the communicability between a pair of vertices can be rewritten in term of eigenspaces of a network. An agglomerative clustering algorithm is then presented to discover the hierarchical communities using the communicability matrix. Finally, these overlapping vertices are discovered with the corresponding eigenspaces, based on the fact that the vertices more densely connected amongst one another are more likely to be linked through short cycles. Compared with the traditional spectral algorithms, our algorithm can identify both the overlapping and hierarchical community without increasing the time complexity O(n 3 ), where n is the size of the network. Furthermore, our algorithm can also distinguish the overlapping vertices from bridges. The method is tested by applying it to some computer-generated and real-world networks. The experimental results indicate that our algorithm can reveal community structure more precisely than the traditional spectral approaches

  12. Crystal Structures of Staphylococcus epidermidis Mevalonate Diphosphate Decarboxylase Bound to Inhibitory Analogs Reveal New Insight into Substrate Binding and Catalysis

    Barta, Michael L.; Skaff, D. Andrew; McWhorter, William J.; Herdendorf, Timothy J.; Miziorko, Henry M.; Geisbrecht, Brian V. (UMKC)

    2011-10-28

    The polyisoprenoid compound undecaprenyl phosphate is required for biosynthesis of cell wall peptidoglycans in Gram-positive bacteria, including pathogenic Enterococcus, Streptococcus, and Staphylococcus spp. In these organisms, the mevalonate pathway is used to produce the precursor isoprenoid, isopentenyl 5-diphosphate. Mevalonate diphosphate decarboxylase (MDD) catalyzes formation of isopentenyl 5-diphosphate in an ATP-dependent irreversible reaction and is therefore an attractive target for inhibitor development that could lead to new antimicrobial agents. To facilitate exploration of this possibility, we report the crystal structure of Staphylococcus epidermidis MDD (1.85 {angstrom} resolution) and, to the best of our knowledge, the first structures of liganded MDD. These structures include MDD bound to the mevalonate 5-diphosphate analogs diphosphoglycolyl proline (2.05 {angstrom} resolution) and 6-fluoromevalonate diphosphate (FMVAPP; 2.2 {angstrom} resolution). Comparison of these structures provides a physical basis for the significant differences in K{sub i} values observed for these inhibitors. Inspection of enzyme/inhibitor structures identified the side chain of invariant Ser{sup 192} as making potential contributions to catalysis. Significantly, Ser {yields} Ala substitution of this side chain decreases k{sub cat} by {approx}10{sup 3}-fold, even though binding interactions between FMVAPP and this mutant are similar to those observed with wild type MDD, as judged by the 2.1 {angstrom} cocrystal structure of S192A with FMVAPP. Comparison of microbial MDD structures with those of mammalian counterparts reveals potential targets at the active site periphery that may be exploited to selectively target the microbial enzymes. These studies provide a structural basis for previous observations regarding the MDD mechanism and inform future work toward rational inhibitor design.

  13. Structural characterisation of Tpx from Yersinia pseudotuberculosis reveals insights into the binding of salicylidene acylhydrazide compounds.

    Mads Gabrielsen

    Full Text Available Thiol peroxidase, Tpx, has been shown to be a target protein of the salicylidene acylhydrazide class of antivirulence compounds. In this study we present the crystal structures of Tpx from Y. pseudotuberculosis (ypTpx in the oxidised and reduced states, together with the structure of the C61S mutant. The structures solved are consistent with previously solved atypical 2-Cys thiol peroxidases, including that for "forced" reduced states using the C61S mutant. In addition, by investigating the solution structure of ypTpx using small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS, we have confirmed that reduced state ypTpx in solution is a homodimer. The solution structure also reveals flexibility around the dimer interface. Notably, the conformational changes observed between the redox states at the catalytic triad and at the dimer interface have implications for substrate and inhibitor binding. The structural data were used to model the binding of two salicylidene acylhydrazide compounds to the oxidised structure of ypTpx. Overall, the study provides insights into the binding of the salicylidene acylhydrazides to ypTpx, aiding our long-term strategy to understand the mode of action of this class of compounds.

  14. Crystal structure analysis reveals functional flexibility in the selenocysteine-specific tRNA from mouse.

    Oleg M Ganichkin

    Full Text Available Selenocysteine tRNAs (tRNA(Sec exhibit a number of unique identity elements that are recognized specifically by proteins of the selenocysteine biosynthetic pathways and decoding machineries. Presently, these identity elements and the mechanisms by which they are interpreted by tRNA(Sec-interacting factors are incompletely understood.We applied rational mutagenesis to obtain well diffracting crystals of murine tRNA(Sec. tRNA(Sec lacking the single-stranded 3'-acceptor end ((ΔGCCARNA(Sec yielded a crystal structure at 2.0 Å resolution. The global structure of (ΔGCCARNA(Sec resembles the structure of human tRNA(Sec determined at 3.1 Å resolution. Structural comparisons revealed flexible regions in tRNA(Sec used for induced fit binding to selenophosphate synthetase. Water molecules located in the present structure were involved in the stabilization of two alternative conformations of the anticodon stem-loop. Modeling of a 2'-O-methylated ribose at position U34 of the anticodon loop as found in a sub-population of tRNA(Secin vivo showed how this modification favors an anticodon loop conformation that is functional during decoding on the ribosome. Soaking of crystals in Mn(2+-containing buffer revealed eight potential divalent metal ion binding sites but the located metal ions did not significantly stabilize specific structural features of tRNA(Sec.We provide the most highly resolved structure of a tRNA(Sec molecule to date and assessed the influence of water molecules and metal ions on the molecule's conformation and dynamics. Our results suggest how conformational changes of tRNA(Sec support its interaction with proteins.

  15. On the use of the fictitious wave steepness and related surf-similarity parameters in methods that describe the hydraulic and structural response to waves

    Heineke, D.; Verhagen, H.J.

    2007-01-01

    To assess the hydraulic performance of coastal structures - viz. wave run-up, overtopping and reflection - and to evaluate the stability of the armour layers, use is made of the dimensionless surf similarity parameter, as introduced by Battjes (1974). The front side slope of the structure and the

  16. Identification of Lygus hesperus by DNA barcoding reveals insignificant levels of genetic structure among distant and habitat diverse populations.

    Changqing Zhou

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The western tarnished plant bug Lygus hesperus is an economically important pest that belongs to a complex of morphologically similar species that makes identification problematic. The present study provides evidence for the use of DNA barcodes from populations of L. hesperus from the western United States of America for accurate identification. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: This study reports DNA barcodes for 134 individuals of the western tarnished plant bug from alfalfa and strawberry agricultural fields in the western United States of America. Sequence divergence estimates of <3% reveal that morphologically variable individuals presumed to be L. hesperus were accurately identified. Paired estimates of F(st and subsequent estimates of gene flow show that geographically distinct populations of L. hesperus are genetically similar. Therefore, our results support and reinforce the relatively recent (<100 years migration of the western tarnished plant bug into agricultural habitats across the western United States. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This study reveals that despite wide host plant usage and phenotypically plastic morphological traits, the commonly recognized western tarnished plant bug belongs to a single species, Lygus hesperus. In addition, no significant genetic structure was found for the geographically diverse populations of western tarnished plant bug used in this study.

  17. Crystal structures of the transcriptional repressor RolR reveals a novel recognition mechanism between inducer and regulator.

    De-Feng Li

    Full Text Available Many members of the TetR family control the transcription of genes involved in multidrug resistance and pathogenicity. RolR (ResorcinolRegulator, the recently reported TetR-type regulator for aromatic catabolism from Corynebacterium glutamicum, distinguishes itself by low sequence similarities and different regulation from the previously known members of the TetR family. Here we report the crystal structures of RolR in its effector-bound (with resorcinol and aop- forms at 2.5 Å and 3.6 Å, respectively. The structure of resorcinol-RolR complex reveal that the hydrogen-bonded network mediated by the four-residue motif (Asp94- Arg145- Arg148- Asp149 with two water molecules and the hydrophobic interaction via five residues (Phe107, Leu111, Leu114, Leu142, and Phe172 are the key factors for the recognition and binding between the resorcinol and RolR molecules. The center-to-center separation of the recognition helices h3-h3' is decreased upon effector-binding from 34.9 Å to 30.4 Å. This structural change results in that RolR was unsuitable for DNA binding. Those observations are distinct from that in other TetR members. Structure-based mutagenesis on RolR was carried out and the results confirmed the critical roles of the above mentioned residues for effector-binding specificity and affinity. Similar sequence searches and sequence alignments identified 29 RolR homologues from GenBank, and all the above mentioned residues are highly conserved in the homologues. Based on these structural and other functional investigations, it is proposed that RolR may represent a new subfamily of TetR proteins that are invovled in aromatic degradation and sharing common recognition mode as for RolR.

  18. On the role of salt formation and structural similarity of co-formers in co-amorphous drug delivery systems

    Wu, Wenqi; Löbmann, Korbinian; Rades, Thomas

    2018-01-01

    solubility. However, little is known about the importance of the overall structure of the co-former. In this study, the structurally related amino acids arginine (basic) and citrulline (neutral) were chosen together with four model drugs (acidic furosemide and nitrofurantoin; basic cimetidine and mebendazole...

  19. TreeNetViz: revealing patterns of networks over tree structures.

    Gou, Liang; Zhang, Xiaolong Luke

    2011-12-01

    Network data often contain important attributes from various dimensions such as social affiliations and areas of expertise in a social network. If such attributes exhibit a tree structure, visualizing a compound graph consisting of tree and network structures becomes complicated. How to visually reveal patterns of a network over a tree has not been fully studied. In this paper, we propose a compound graph model, TreeNet, to support visualization and analysis of a network at multiple levels of aggregation over a tree. We also present a visualization design, TreeNetViz, to offer the multiscale and cross-scale exploration and interaction of a TreeNet graph. TreeNetViz uses a Radial, Space-Filling (RSF) visualization to represent the tree structure, a circle layout with novel optimization to show aggregated networks derived from TreeNet, and an edge bundling technique to reduce visual complexity. Our circular layout algorithm reduces both total edge-crossings and edge length and also considers hierarchical structure constraints and edge weight in a TreeNet graph. These experiments illustrate that the algorithm can reduce visual cluttering in TreeNet graphs. Our case study also shows that TreeNetViz has the potential to support the analysis of a compound graph by revealing multiscale and cross-scale network patterns. © 2011 IEEE

  20. The asymmetrical structure of Golgi apparatus membranes revealed by in situ atomic force microscope.

    Haijiao Xu

    Full Text Available The Golgi apparatus has attracted intense attentions due to its fascinating morphology and vital role as the pivot of cellular secretory pathway since its discovery. However, its complex structure at the molecular level remains elusive due to limited approaches. In this study, the structure of Golgi apparatus, including the Golgi stack, cisternal structure, relevant tubules and vesicles, were directly visualized by high-resolution atomic force microscope. We imaged both sides of Golgi apparatus membranes and revealed that the outer leaflet of Golgi membranes is relatively smooth while the inner membrane leaflet is rough and covered by dense proteins. With the treatment of methyl-β-cyclodextrin and Triton X-100, we confirmed the existence of lipid rafts in Golgi apparatus membrane, which are mostly in the size of 20 nm -200 nm and appear irregular in shape. Our results may be of significance to reveal the structure-function relationship of the Golgi complex and pave the way for visualizing the endomembrane system in mammalian cells at the molecular level.

  1. Structure of Human GIVD Cytosolic Phospholipase A2 Reveals Insights into Substrate Recognition

    Wang, Hui; Klein, Michael G.; Snell, Gyorgy; Lane, Weston; Zou, Hua; Levin, Irena; Li, Ke; Sang, Bi-Ching (Takeda Cali)

    2016-07-01

    Cytosolic phospholipases A2 (cPLA2s) consist of a family of calcium-sensitive enzymes that function to generate lipid second messengers through hydrolysis of membrane-associated glycerophospholipids. The GIVD cPLA2 (cPLA2δ) is a potential drug target for developing a selective therapeutic agent for the treatment of psoriasis. Here, we present two X-ray structures of human cPLA2δ, capturing an apo state, and in complex with a substrate-like inhibitor. Comparison of the apo and inhibitor-bound structures reveals conformational changes in a flexible cap that allows the substrate to access the relatively buried active site, providing new insight into the mechanism for substrate recognition. The cPLA2δ structure reveals an unexpected second C2 domain that was previously unrecognized from sequence alignments, placing cPLA2δ into the class of membrane-associated proteins that contain a tandem pair of C2 domains. Furthermore, our structures elucidate novel inter-domain interactions and define three potential calcium-binding sites that are likely important for regulation and activation of enzymatic activity. These findings provide novel insights into the molecular mechanisms governing cPLA2's function in signal transduction.

  2. The structure of mAG, a monomeric mutant of the green fluorescent protein Azami-Green, reveals the structural basis of its stable green emission

    Ebisawa, Tatsuki; Yamamura, Akihiro; Kameda, Yasuhiro; Hayakawa, Kou; Nagata, Koji; Tanokura, Masaru

    2010-01-01

    The crystal structure of a monomeric mutant of Azami-Green (mAG) from G. fascicularis was determined at 2.2 Å resolution. Monomeric Azami-Green (mAG) from the stony coral Galaxea fascicularis is the first known monomeric green-emitting fluorescent protein that is not a variant of Aequorea victoria green fluorescent protein (avGFP). These two green fluorescent proteins are only 27% identical in their amino-acid sequences. mAG is more similar in its amino-acid sequence to four fluorescent proteins: Dendra2 (a green-to-red irreversibly photoconverting fluorescent protein), Dronpa (a bright-and-dark reversibly photoswitchable fluorescent protein), KikG (a tetrameric green-emitting fluorescent protein) and Kaede (another green-to-red irreversibly photoconverting fluorescent protein). To reveal the structural basis of stable green emission by mAG, the 2.2 Å crystal structure of mAG has been determined and compared with the crystal structures of avGFP, Dronpa, Dendra2, Kaede and KikG. The structural comparison revealed that the chromophore formed by Gln62-Tyr63-Gly64 (QYG) and the fixing of the conformation of the imidazole ring of His193 by hydrogen bonds and van der Waals contacts involving His193, Arg66 and Thr69 are likely to be required for the stable green emission of mAG. The crystal structure of mAG will contribute to the design and development of new monomeric fluorescent proteins with faster maturation, brighter fluorescence, improved photostability, new colours and other preferable properties as alternatives to avGFP and its variants

  3. Structural view of the helicase reveals that Zika virus uses a conserved mechanism for unwinding RNA.

    Li, Lei; Wang, Jin; Jia, Zhihui; Shaw, Neil

    2018-04-01

    Recent studies suggest a link between infection by Zika virus (ZIKV) and the development of neurological complications. The lack of ZIKV-specific therapeutics has alarmed healthcare professionals worldwide. Here, crystal structures of apo and AMPPNP- and Mn 2+ -bound forms of the essential helicase of ZIKV refined to 1.78 and 1.3 Å resolution, respectively, are reported. The structures reveal a conserved trimodular topology of the helicase. ATP and Mn 2+ are tethered between two RecA-like domains by conserved hydrogen-bonding interactions. The binding of ligands induces the movement of backbone Cα and side-chain atoms. Numerous solvent molecules are observed in the vicinity of the AMPPNP, suggesting a role in catalysis. These high-resolution structures could be useful for the design of inhibitors targeting the helicase of ZIKV for the treatment of infections caused by ZIKV.

  4. Rhabdovirus matrix protein structures reveal a novel mode of self-association.

    Stephen C Graham

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available The matrix (M proteins of rhabdoviruses are multifunctional proteins essential for virus maturation and budding that also regulate the expression of viral and host proteins. We have solved the structures of M from the vesicular stomatitis virus serotype New Jersey (genus: Vesiculovirus and from Lagos bat virus (genus: Lyssavirus, revealing that both share a common fold despite sharing no identifiable sequence homology. Strikingly, in both structures a stretch of residues from the otherwise-disordered N terminus of a crystallographically adjacent molecule is observed binding to a hydrophobic cavity on the surface of the protein, thereby forming non-covalent linear polymers of M in the crystals. While the overall topology of the interaction is conserved between the two structures, the molecular details of the interactions are completely different. The observed interactions provide a compelling model for the flexible self-assembly of the matrix protein during virion morphogenesis and may also modulate interactions with host proteins.

  5. The structure of a conserved piezo channel domain reveals a topologically distinct β sandwich fold.

    Kamajaya, Aron; Kaiser, Jens T; Lee, Jonas; Reid, Michelle; Rees, Douglas C

    2014-10-07

    Piezo has recently been identified as a family of eukaryotic mechanosensitive channels composed of subunits containing over 2,000 amino acids, without recognizable sequence similarity to other channels. Here, we present the crystal structure of a large, conserved extramembrane domain located just before the last predicted transmembrane helix of C. elegans PIEZO, which adopts a topologically distinct β sandwich fold. The structure was also determined of a point mutation located on a conserved surface at the position equivalent to the human PIEZO1 mutation found in dehydrated hereditary stomatocytosis patients (M2225R). While the point mutation does not change the overall domain structure, it does alter the surface electrostatic potential that may perturb interactions with a yet-to-be-identified ligand or protein. The lack of structural similarity between this domain and any previously characterized fold, including those of eukaryotic and bacterial channels, highlights the distinctive nature of the Piezo family of eukaryotic mechanosensitive channels. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Amplified DNAs in laboratory stocks of Leishmania tarentolae: extrachromosomal circles structurally and functionally similar to the inverted-H-region amplification of methotrexate-resistant Leishmania major

    Petrillo-Peixoto, M.L.; Beverley, S.M.

    1988-01-01

    We describe the structure of amplified DNA that was discovered in two laboratory stocks of the protozoan parasite Leishmania tarentolae. Restriction mapping and molecular cloning revealed that a region of 42 kilobases was amplified 8- to 30-fold in these lines. Southern blot analyses of digested DNAs or chromosomes separated by pulsed-field electrophoresis showed that the amplified DNA corresponded to the H region, a locus defined originally by its amplification in methotrexate-resistant Leishmania major. Similarities between the amplified DNA of the two species included (i) extensive cross-hybridization; (ii) approximate conservation of sequence order; (iii) extrachromosomal localization; (iv) an overall inverted, head-to-head configuration as a circular 140-kilobase tetrameric molecule; (v) two regions of DNA sequence rearrangement, each of which was closely associated with the two centers of the inverted repeats; (vi) association with methotrexate resistance; and (vii) phenotypically conservative amplification, in which the wild-type chromosomal arrangement was retained without apparent modification. Our data showed that amplified DNA mediating drug resistance arose in unselected L. tarentolae, although the pressures leading to apparently spontaneous amplification and maintenance of the H region are not known. The simple structure and limited extent of DNA amplified in these and other Leishmania lines suggests that the study of gene amplification in Leishmania spp. offers an attractive model system for the study of amplification in cultured mammalian cells and tumors. We also introduced a method for measuring the size of large circular DNAs, using gamma-irradiation to introduce limited double-strand breaks followed by sizing of the linear DNAs by pulsed-field electrophoresis

  7. Structural insights into cellulolytic and chitinolytic enzymes revealing crucial residues of insect β-N-acetyl-D-hexosaminidase.

    Tian Liu

    Full Text Available The chemical similarity of cellulose and chitin supports the idea that their corresponding hydrolytic enzymes would bind β-1,4-linked glucose residues in a similar manner. A structural and mutational analysis was performed for the plant cellulolytic enzyme BGlu1 from Oryza sativa and the insect chitinolytic enzyme OfHex1 from Ostrinia furnacalis. Although BGlu1 shows little amino-acid sequence or topological similarity with OfHex1, three residues (Trp(490, Glu(328, Val(327 in OfHex1, and Trp(358, Tyr(131 and Ile(179 in BGlu1 were identified as being conserved in the +1 sugar binding site. OfHex1 Glu(328 together with Trp(490 was confirmed to be necessary for substrate binding. The mutant E328A exhibited a 8-fold increment in K(m for (GlcNAc(2 and a 42-fold increment in K(i for TMG-chitotriomycin. A crystal structure of E328A in complex with TMG-chitotriomycin was resolved at 2.5 Å, revealing the obvious conformational changes of the catalytic residues (Glu(368 and Asp(367 and the absence of the hydrogen bond between E328A and the C3-OH of the +1 sugar. V327G exhibited the same activity as the wild-type, but acquired the ability to efficiently hydrolyse β-1,2-linked GlcNAc in contrast to the wild-type. Thus, Glu(328 and Val(327 were identified as important for substrate-binding and as glycosidic-bond determinants. A structure-based sequence alignment confirmed the spatial conservation of these three residues in most plant cellulolytic, insect and bacterial chitinolytic enzymes.

  8. Heparan sulfate chains from glypican and syndecans bind the Hep II domain of fibronectin similarly despite minor structural differences

    Tumova, S; Woods, A; Couchman, J R

    2000-01-01

    syndecan-4. Despite distinct molecular masses of glypican and syndecan glycosaminoglycans and minor differences in disaccharide composition and sulfation pattern, the overall proportion and distribution of sulfated regions and the affinity for the Hep II domain were similar. Therefore, adhesion regulation...

  9. Structure insight of GSDMD reveals the basis of GSDMD autoinhibition in cell pyroptosis.

    Kuang, Siyun; Zheng, Jun; Yang, Hui; Li, Suhua; Duan, Shuyan; Shen, Yanfang; Ji, Chaoneng; Gan, Jianhua; Xu, Xue-Wei; Li, Jixi

    2017-10-03

    Recent findings have revealed that the protein gasdermin D (GSDMD) plays key roles in cell pyroptosis. GSDMD binds lipids and forms pore structures to induce pyroptosis upon microbial infection and associated danger signals. However, detailed structural information for GSDMD remains unknown. Here, we report the crystal structure of the C-terminal domain of human GSDMD (GSDMD-C) at 2.64-Å resolution. The first loop on GSDMD-C inserts into the N-terminal domain (GSDMD-N), which helps stabilize the conformation of the full-length GSDMD. Substitution of this region by a short linker sequence increased levels of cell death. Mutants F283A and F283R can increase protein heterogeneity in vitro and are capable of undergoing cell pyroptosis in 293T cells. The small-angle X-ray-scattering envelope of human GSDMD is consistent with the modeled GSDMD structure and mouse GSDMA3 structure, which suggests that GSDMD adopts an autoinhibited conformation in solution. The positive potential surface of GSDMD-N covered by GSDMD-C is exposed after being released from the autoinhibition state and can form high-order oligomers via a charge-charge interaction. Furthermore, by mapping different regions of GSDMD, we determined that one short segment is sufficient to kill bacteria in vitro and can efficiently inhibit cell growth in Escherichia coli and Mycobacterium Smegmatis These findings reveal that GSDMD-C acts as an auto-inhibition executor and GSDMD-N could form pore structures via a charge-charge interaction upon cleavage by caspases during cell pyroptosis.

  10. Structure in nascent carbon nanotubes revealed by spatially resolved Raman spectroscopy

    Landois, Périne [CEA, IRAMIS, SPAM, Laboratoire Francis Perrin (CNRS URA 2453), 91191 Gif-sur-Yvette (France); Laboratoire de Physique des Solides, UMR CNRS 8502, Université Paris Sud 11, 91405 Orsay (France); Pinault, Mathieu [CEA, IRAMIS, SPAM, Laboratoire Francis Perrin (CNRS URA 2453), 91191 Gif-sur-Yvette (France); Huard, Mickaël [Laboratoire de Physique des Solides, UMR CNRS 8502, Université Paris Sud 11, 91405 Orsay (France); Reita, Valérie [Univ. Grenoble Alpes, Inst NEEL, F-38042 Grenoble (France); CNRS, Inst NEEL, F-38042 Grenoble (France); Rouzière, Stéphan; Launois, Pascale [Laboratoire de Physique des Solides, UMR CNRS 8502, Université Paris Sud 11, 91405 Orsay (France); Mayne-L' Hermite, Martine [CEA, IRAMIS, SPAM, Laboratoire Francis Perrin (CNRS URA 2453), 91191 Gif-sur-Yvette (France); Bendiab, Nedjma, E-mail: nedjma.bendiab@grenoble.cnrs.fr [Univ. Grenoble Alpes, Inst NEEL, F-38042 Grenoble (France); CNRS, Inst NEEL, F-38042 Grenoble (France)

    2014-10-01

    The understanding of carbon nanotube (CNT) growth is crucial for the control of their production. In particular, the identification of structural changes of carbon possibly occurring near the catalyst particle in the very early stages of their formation is of high interest. In this study, samples of nascent CNT obtained during nucleation step and samples of vertically aligned CNT obtained during growth step are analysed by combined spatially resolved Raman spectroscopy and X-ray diffraction measurements. Spatially resolved Raman spectroscopy reveals that iron-based phases and carbon phases are co-localized at the same position, and indicates that sp{sup 2} carbon nucleates preferentially on iron-based particles during this nucleation step. Depth scan Raman spectroscopy analysis, performed on nascent CNT, highlights that carbon structural organisation is significantly changing from defective graphene layers surrounding the iron-based particles at their base up to multi-walled nanotube structures in the upper part of iron-based particles. - Highlights: • Spatial co-localization of iron and carbon structures in nascent carbon nanotubes • Imaging local carbon structure changes along catalyst particles by Raman spectroscopy. • In nascent nanotubes, significant structural changes occur along catalyst particle.

  11. Computational Approaches for Revealing the Structure of Membrane Transporters: Case Study on Bilitranslocase

    Katja Venko

    Full Text Available The structural and functional details of transmembrane proteins are vastly underexplored, mostly due to experimental difficulties regarding their solubility and stability. Currently, the majority of transmembrane protein structures are still unknown and this present a huge experimental and computational challenge. Nowadays, thanks to X-ray crystallography or NMR spectroscopy over 3000 structures of membrane proteins have been solved, among them only a few hundred unique ones. Due to the vast biological and pharmaceutical interest in the elucidation of the structure and the functional mechanisms of transmembrane proteins, several computational methods have been developed to overcome the experimental gap. If combined with experimental data the computational information enables rapid, low cost and successful predictions of the molecular structure of unsolved proteins. The reliability of the predictions depends on the availability and accuracy of experimental data associated with structural information. In this review, the following methods are proposed for in silico structure elucidation: sequence-dependent predictions of transmembrane regions, predictions of transmembrane helix–helix interactions, helix arrangements in membrane models, and testing their stability with molecular dynamics simulations. We also demonstrate the usage of the computational methods listed above by proposing a model for the molecular structure of the transmembrane protein bilitranslocase. Bilitranslocase is bilirubin membrane transporter, which shares similar tissue distribution and functional properties with some of the members of the Organic Anion Transporter family and is the only member classified in the Bilirubin Transporter Family. Regarding its unique properties, bilitranslocase is a potentially interesting drug target. Keywords: Membrane proteins, Bilitranslocase, 3D protein structure, Transmembrane region predictors, Helix–helix interactions

  12. A Deconvolution Protocol for ChIP-Seq Reveals Analogous Enhancer Structures on the Mouse and Human Ribosomal RNA Genes

    Jean-Clement Mars

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The combination of Chromatin Immunoprecipitation and Massively Parallel Sequencing, or ChIP-Seq, has greatly advanced our genome-wide understanding of chromatin and enhancer structures. However, its resolution at any given genetic locus is limited by several factors. In applying ChIP-Seq to the study of the ribosomal RNA genes, we found that a major limitation to resolution was imposed by the underlying variability in sequence coverage that very often dominates the protein–DNA interaction profiles. Here, we describe a simple numerical deconvolution approach that, in large part, corrects for this variability, and significantly improves both the resolution and quantitation of protein–DNA interaction maps deduced from ChIP-Seq data. This approach has allowed us to determine the in vivo organization of the RNA polymerase I preinitiation complexes that form at the promoters and enhancers of the mouse (Mus musculus and human (Homo sapiens ribosomal RNA genes, and to reveal a phased binding of the HMG-box factor UBF across the rDNA. The data identify and map a “Spacer Promoter” and associated stalled polymerase in the intergenic spacer of the human ribosomal RNA genes, and reveal a very similar enhancer structure to that found in rodents and lower vertebrates.

  13. Chromosomal structures and repetitive sequences divergence in Cucumis species revealed by comparative cytogenetic mapping.

    Zhang, Yunxia; Cheng, Chunyan; Li, Ji; Yang, Shuqiong; Wang, Yunzhu; Li, Ziang; Chen, Jinfeng; Lou, Qunfeng

    2015-09-25

    Differentiation and copy number of repetitive sequences affect directly chromosome structure which contributes to reproductive isolation and speciation. Comparative cytogenetic mapping has been verified an efficient tool to elucidate the differentiation and distribution of repetitive sequences in genome. In present study, the distinct chromosomal structures of five Cucumis species were revealed through genomic in situ hybridization (GISH) technique and comparative cytogenetic mapping of major satellite repeats. Chromosome structures of five Cucumis species were investigated using GISH and comparative mapping of specific satellites. Southern hybridization was employed to study the proliferation of satellites, whose structural characteristics were helpful for analyzing chromosome evolution. Preferential distribution of repetitive DNAs at the subtelomeric regions was found in C. sativus, C hystrix and C. metuliferus, while majority was positioned at the pericentromeric heterochromatin regions in C. melo and C. anguria. Further, comparative GISH (cGISH) through using genomic DNA of other species as probes revealed high homology of repeats between C. sativus and C. hystrix. Specific satellites including 45S rDNA, Type I/II, Type III, Type IV, CentM and telomeric repeat were then comparatively mapped in these species. Type I/II and Type IV produced bright signals at the subtelomeric regions of C. sativus and C. hystrix simultaneously, which might explain the significance of their amplification in the divergence of Cucumis subgenus from the ancient ancestor. Unique positioning of Type III and CentM only at the centromeric domains of C. sativus and C. melo, respectively, combining with unique southern bands, revealed rapid evolutionary patterns of centromeric DNA in Cucumis. Obvious interstitial telomeric repeats were observed in chromosomes 1 and 2 of C. sativus, which might provide evidence of the fusion hypothesis of chromosome evolution from x = 12 to x = 7 in

  14. Three-dimensional structure of a schistosome serpin revealing an unusual configuration of the helical subdomain

    Granzin, Joachim [Institute of Complex Systems, ICS-6: Structural Biochemistry, Forschungszentrum Jülich, 52425 Jülich (Germany); Huang, Ying; Topbas, Celalettin [Department of Cell Biology, Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH 44195 (United States); Huang, Wenying [Department of Cancer Biology, Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH 44195 (United States); Wu, Zhiping [Department of Cell Biology, Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH 44195 (United States); Misra, Saurav [Department of Molecular Cardiology, Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH 44195 (United States); Hazen, Stanley L. [Department of Cell Biology, Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH 44195 (United States); Blanton, Ronald E. [Department of Infectious Diseases, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH 44190 (United States); Lee, Xavier [Department of Cell Biology, Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH 44195 (United States); Weiergräber, Oliver H., E-mail: o.h.weiergraeber@fz-juelich.de [Institute of Complex Systems, ICS-6: Structural Biochemistry, Forschungszentrum Jülich, 52425 Jülich (Germany)

    2012-06-01

    The crystal structure of ShSPI, a serpin from the blood fluke S. haematobium, reveals some peculiar features of the helical subdomain which have not been observed previously in the serpin superfamily. Parasitic organisms are constantly challenged by the defence mechanisms of their respective hosts, which often depend on serine protease activities. Consequently, protease inhibitors such as those belonging to the serpin superfamily have emerged as protective elements that support the survival of the parasites. This report describes the crystal structure of ShSPI, a serpin from the trematode Schistosoma haematobium. The protein is exposed on the surface of invading cercaria as well as of adult worms, suggesting its involvement in the parasite–host interaction. While generally conforming to the well established serpin fold, the structure reveals several distinctive features, mostly concerning the helical subdomain of the protein. It is proposed that these peculiarities are related to the unique biological properties of a small serpin subfamily which is conserved among pathogenic schistosomes.

  15. Highly distinct chromosomal structures in cowpea (Vigna unguiculata), as revealed by molecular cytogenetic analysis.

    Iwata-Otsubo, Aiko; Lin, Jer-Young; Gill, Navdeep; Jackson, Scott A

    2016-05-01

    Cowpea (Vigna unguiculata (L.) Walp) is an important legume, particularly in developing countries. However, little is known about its genome or chromosome structure. We used molecular cytogenetics to characterize the structure of pachytene chromosomes to advance our knowledge of chromosome and genome organization of cowpea. Our data showed that cowpea has highly distinct chromosomal structures that are cytologically visible as brightly DAPI-stained heterochromatic regions. Analysis of the repetitive fraction of the cowpea genome present at centromeric and pericentromeric regions confirmed that two retrotransposons are major components of pericentromeric regions and that a 455-bp tandem repeat is found at seven out of 11 centromere pairs in cowpea. These repeats likely evolved after the divergence of cowpea from common bean and form chromosomal structure unique to cowpea. The integration of cowpea genetic and physical chromosome maps reveals potential regions of suppressed recombination due to condensed heterochromatin and a lack of pairing in a few chromosomal termini. This study provides fundamental knowledge on cowpea chromosome structure and molecular cytogenetics tools for further chromosome studies.

  16. Crystal structure of Clostridium botulinum whole hemagglutinin reveals a huge triskelion-shaped molecular complex.

    Amatsu, Sho; Sugawara, Yo; Matsumura, Takuhiro; Kitadokoro, Kengo; Fujinaga, Yukako

    2013-12-06

    Clostridium botulinum HA is a component of the large botulinum neurotoxin complex and is critical for its oral toxicity. HA plays multiple roles in toxin penetration in the gastrointestinal tract, including protection from the digestive environment, binding to the intestinal mucosal surface, and disruption of the epithelial barrier. At least two properties of HA contribute to these roles: the sugar-binding activity and the barrier-disrupting activity that depends on E-cadherin binding of HA. HA consists of three different proteins, HA1, HA2, and HA3, whose structures have been partially solved and are made up mainly of β-strands. Here, we demonstrate structural and functional reconstitution of whole HA and present the complete structure of HA of serotype B determined by x-ray crystallography at 3.5 Å resolution. This structure reveals whole HA to be a huge triskelion-shaped molecule. Our results suggest that whole HA is functionally and structurally separable into two parts: HA1, involved in recognition of cell-surface carbohydrates, and HA2-HA3, involved in paracellular barrier disruption by E-cadherin binding.

  17. The unique N-terminal zinc finger of synaptotagmin-like protein 4 reveals FYVE structure.

    Miyamoto, Kazuhide; Nakatani, Arisa; Saito, Kazuki

    2017-12-01

    Synaptotagmin-like protein 4 (Slp4), expressed in human platelets, is associated with dense granule release. Slp4 is comprised of the N-terminal zinc finger, Slp homology domain, and C2 domains. We synthesized a compact construct (the Slp4N peptide) corresponding to the Slp4 N-terminal zinc finger. Herein, we have determined the solution structure of the Slp4N peptide by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR). Furthermore, experimental, chemical modification of Cys residues revealed that the Slp4N peptide binds two zinc atoms to mediate proper folding. NMR data showed that eight Cys residues coordinate zinc atoms in a cross-brace fashion. The Simple Modular Architecture Research Tool database predicted the structure of Slp4N as a RING finger. However, the actual structure of the Slp4N peptide adopts a unique C 4 C 4 -type FYVE fold and is distinct from a RING fold. To create an artificial RING finger (ARF) with specific ubiquitin-conjugating enzyme (E2)-binding capability, cross-brace structures with eight zinc-ligating residues are needed as the scaffold. The cross-brace structure of the Slp4N peptide could be utilized as the scaffold for the design of ARFs. © 2017 The Protein Society.

  18. Structural insights into conserved L-arabinose metabolic enzymes reveal the substrate binding site of a thermophilic L-arabinose isomerase.

    Lee, Yong-Jik; Lee, Sang-Jae; Kim, Seong-Bo; Lee, Sang Jun; Lee, Sung Haeng; Lee, Dong-Woo

    2014-03-18

    Structural genomics demonstrates that despite low levels of structural similarity of proteins comprising a metabolic pathway, their substrate binding regions are likely to be conserved. Herein based on the 3D-structures of the α/β-fold proteins involved in the ara operon, we attempted to predict the substrate binding residues of thermophilic Geobacillus stearothermophilus L-arabinose isomerase (GSAI) with no 3D-structure available. Comparison of the structures of L-arabinose catabolic enzymes revealed a conserved feature to form the substrate-binding modules, which can be extended to predict the substrate binding site of GSAI (i.e., D195, E261 and E333). Moreover, these data implicated that proteins in the l-arabinose metabolic pathway might retain their substrate binding niches as the modular structure through conserved molecular evolution even with totally different structural scaffolds. Copyright © 2014 Federation of European Biochemical Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Mom's shadow: structure-from-motion in newly hatched chicks as revealed by an imprinting procedure.

    Mascalzoni, Elena; Regolin, Lucia; Vallortigara, Giorgio

    2009-03-01

    The ability to recognize three-dimensional objects from two-dimensional (2-D) displays was investigated in domestic chicks, focusing on the role of the object's motion. In Experiment 1 newly hatched chicks, imprinted on a three-dimensional (3-D) object, were allowed to choose between the shadows of the familiar object and of an object never seen before. In Experiments 2 and 3 random-dot displays were used to produce the perception of a solid shape only when set in motion. Overall, the results showed that domestic chicks were able to recognize familiar shapes from 2-D motion stimuli. It is likely that similar general mechanisms underlying the perception of structure-from-motion and the extraction of 3-D information are shared by humans and animals. The present data shows that they occur similarly in birds as known for mammals, two separate vertebrate classes; this possibly indicates a common phylogenetic origin of these processes.

  20. Structural and sequence variants in patients with Silver-Russell syndrome or similar features-Curation of a disease database

    Tümer, Zeynep; López-Hernández, Julia Angélica; Netchine, Irène

    2018-01-01

    data of these patients. The clinical features are scored according to the Netchine-Harbison clinical scoring system (NH-CSS), which has recently been accepted as standard by consensus. The structural and sequence variations are reviewed and where necessary redescribed according to recent...

  1. In Vitro-Assembled Alphavirus Core-Like Particles Maintain a Structure Similar to That of Nucleocapsid Cores in Mature Virus

    Mukhopadhyay, Suchetana; Chipman, Paul R.; Hong, Eunmee M.; Kuhn, Richard J.; Rossmann, Michael G.

    2002-01-01

    In vitro-assembled core-like particles produced from alphavirus capsid protein and nucleic acid were studied by cryoelectron microscopy. These particles were found to have a diameter of 420 Å with 240 copies of the capsid protein arranged in a T=4 icosahedral surface lattice, similar to the nucleocapsid core in mature virions. However, when the particles were subjected to gentle purification procedures, they were damaged, preventing generation of reliable structural information. Similarly, pu...

  2. The structure of Lactococcus lactis thioredoxin reductase reveals molecular features of photo-oxidative damage

    Skjoldager, Nicklas; Bang, Maria Blanner; Rykær, Martin

    2017-01-01

    The NADPH-dependent homodimeric flavoenzyme thioredoxin reductase (TrxR) provides reducing equivalents to thioredoxin, a key regulator of various cellular redox processes. Crystal structures of photo-inactivated thioredoxin reductase (TrxR) from the Gram-positive bacterium Lactococcus lactis have...... been determined. These structures reveal novel molecular features that provide further insight into the mechanisms behind the sensitivity of this enzyme toward visible light. We propose that a pocket on the si-face of the isoalloxazine ring accommodates oxygen that reacts with photo-excited FAD...... thus be a widespread feature among bacterial TrxR with the described characteristics, which affords applications in clinical photo-therapy of drug-resistant bacteria....

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

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

    2011-12-31

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

  4. Crystal structure of the Alcanivorax borkumensis YdaH transporter reveals an unusual topology

    Bolla, Jani Reddy; Su, Chih-Chia; Delmar, Jared A.; Radhakrishnan, Abhijith; Kumar, Nitin; Chou, Tsung-Han; Long, Feng; Rajashankar, Kanagalaghatta R.; Yu, Edward W.

    2015-04-01

    The potential of the folic acid biosynthesis pathway as a target for the development of antibiotics has been clinically validated. However, many pathogens have developed resistance to these antibiotics, prompting a re-evaluation of potential drug targets within the pathway. The ydaH gene of Alcanivorax borkumensis encodes an integral membrane protein of the AbgT family of transporters for which no structural information was available. Here we report the crystal structure of A. borkumensis YdaH, revealing a dimeric molecule with an architecture distinct from other families of transporters. YdaH is a bowl-shaped dimer with a solvent-filled basin extending from the cytoplasm to halfway across the membrane bilayer. Each subunit of the transporter contains nine transmembrane helices and two hairpins that suggest a plausible pathway for substrate transport. Further analyses also suggest that YdaH could act as an antibiotic efflux pump and mediate bacterial resistance to sulfonamide antimetabolite drugs.

  5. Revealing Abrupt and Spontaneous Ruptures of Protein Native Structure under picoNewton Compressive Force Manipulation.

    Chowdhury, S Roy; Cao, Jin; He, Yufan; Lu, H Peter

    2018-03-27

    Manipulating protein conformations for exploring protein structure-function relationship has shown great promise. Although protein conformational changes under pulling force manipulation have been extensively studied, protein conformation changes under a compressive force have not been explored quantitatively. The latter is even more biologically significant and relevant in revealing protein functions in living cells associated with protein crowdedness, distribution fluctuations, and cell osmotic stress. Here we report our experimental observations on abrupt ruptures of protein native structures under compressive force, demonstrated and studied by single-molecule AFM-FRET spectroscopic nanoscopy. Our results show that the protein ruptures are abrupt and spontaneous events occurred when the compressive force reaches a threshold of 12-75 pN, a force amplitude accessible from thermal fluctuations in a living cell. The abrupt ruptures are sensitive to local environment, likely a general and important pathway of protein unfolding in living cells.

  6. Structural brain abnormalities in women with subclinical depression, as revealed by voxel-based morphometry and diffusion tensor imaging.

    Hayakawa, Yayoi K; Sasaki, Hiroki; Takao, Hidemasa; Mori, Harushi; Hayashi, Naoto; Kunimatsu, Akira; Aoki, Shigeki; Ohtomo, Kuni

    2013-01-25

    Brain structural changes accompany major depressive disorder, but whether subclinical depression is accompanied by similar changes in brain volume and white matter integrity is unknown. By using voxel-based morphometry (VBM) of the gray matter and tract-specific analysis based on diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) of the white matter, we explored the extent to which abnormalities could be identified in specific brain structures of healthy adults with subclinical depression. The subjects were 21 community-dwelling adults with subclinical depression, as measured by their Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D) scores. They were not demented and had no neurological or psychiatric history. We collected brain magnetic resonance images of the patients and of 21 matched control subjects, and we used VBM to analyze the differences in regional gray matter volume between the two groups. Moreover, we examined the white matter integrity by using tract-specific analysis based on the gray matter volume changes revealed by VBM. VBM revealed that the volumes of both anterior cingulate gyri and the right rectal gyrus were smaller in subclinically depressed women than in control women. Calculation of DTI measures in the anterior cingulum bundle revealed a positive correlation between CES-D scale score and radial diffusivity in the right anterior cingulum in subclinically depressed women. The small sample size limits the stability of the reported findings. Gray matter volume reduction and white matter integrity change in specific frontal brain regions may be associated with depressive symptoms in women, even at a subclinical level. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Structural and Sequence Similarities of Hydra Xeroderma Pigmentosum A Protein to Human Homolog Suggest Early Evolution and Conservation

    Apurva Barve

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Xeroderma pigmentosum group A (XPA is a protein that binds to damaged DNA, verifies presence of a lesion, and recruits other proteins of the nucleotide excision repair (NER pathway to the site. Though its homologs from yeast, Drosophila, humans, and so forth are well studied, XPA has not so far been reported from protozoa and lower animal phyla. Hydra is a fresh-water cnidarian with a remarkable capacity for regeneration and apparent lack of organismal ageing. Cnidarians are among the first metazoa with a defined body axis, tissue grade organisation, and nervous system. We report here for the first time presence of XPA gene in hydra. Putative protein sequence of hydra XPA contains nuclear localization signal and bears the zinc-finger motif. It contains two conserved Pfam domains and various characterized features of XPA proteins like regions for binding to excision repair cross-complementing protein-1 (ERCC1 and replication protein A 70 kDa subunit (RPA70 proteins. Hydra XPA shows a high degree of similarity with vertebrate homologs and clusters with deuterostomes in phylogenetic analysis. Homology modelling corroborates the very close similarity between hydra and human XPA. The protein thus most likely functions in hydra in the same manner as in other animals, indicating that it arose early in evolution and has been conserved across animal phyla.

  8. Crystal Structure of Ripk4 Reveals Dimerization-Dependent Kinase Activity.

    Huang, Christine S; Oberbeck, Nina; Hsiao, Yi-Chun; Liu, Peter; Johnson, Adam R; Dixit, Vishva M; Hymowitz, Sarah G

    2018-05-01

    Receptor-interacting protein kinase 4 (RIPK4) is a highly conserved regulator of epidermal differentiation. Members of the RIPK family possess a common kinase domain as well as unique accessory domains that likely dictate subcellular localization and substrate preferences. Mutations in human RIPK4 manifest as Bartsocas-Papas syndrome (BPS), a genetic disorder characterized by severe craniofacial and limb abnormalities. We describe the structure of the murine Ripk4 (MmRipk4) kinase domain, in ATP- and inhibitor-bound forms. The crystallographic dimer of MmRipk4 is similar to those of RIPK2 and BRAF, and we show that the intact dimeric entity is required for MmRipk4 catalytic activity through a series of engineered mutations and cell-based assays. We also assess the impact of BPS mutations on protein structure and activity to elucidate the molecular origins of the disease. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Structure of unliganded HSV gD reveals a mechanism for receptor-mediated activation of virus entry

    Krummenacher, Claude; Supekar, Vinit M.; Whitbeck, J. Charles; Lazear, Eric; Connolly, Sarah A.; Eisenberg, Roselyn J.; Cohen, Gary H.; Wiley, Don C.; Carfi, Andrea (UPENN); (IRBM); (CHLMM)

    2010-07-19

    Herpes simplex virus (HSV) entry into cells requires binding of the envelope glycoprotein D (gD) to one of several cell surface receptors. The 50 C-terminal residues of the gD ectodomain are essential for virus entry, but not for receptor binding. We have determined the structure of an unliganded gD molecule that includes these C-terminal residues. The structure reveals that the C-terminus is anchored near the N-terminal region and masks receptor-binding sites. Locking the C-terminus in the position observed in the crystals by an intramolecular disulfide bond abolished receptor binding and virus entry, demonstrating that this region of gD moves upon receptor binding. Similarly, a point mutant that would destabilize the C-terminus structure was nonfunctional for entry, despite increased affinity for receptors. We propose that a controlled displacement of the gD C-terminus upon receptor binding is an essential feature of HSV entry, ensuring the timely activation of membrane fusion.

  10. StralSV: assessment of sequence variability within similar 3D structures and application to polio RNA-dependent RNA polymerase

    Zemla, A; Lang, D; Kostova, T; Andino, R; Zhou, C

    2010-11-29

    Most of the currently used methods for protein function prediction rely on sequence-based comparisons between a query protein and those for which a functional annotation is provided. A serious limitation of sequence similarity-based approaches for identifying residue conservation among proteins is the low confidence in assigning residue-residue correspondences among proteins when the level of sequence identity between the compared proteins is poor. Multiple sequence alignment methods are more satisfactory - still, they cannot provide reliable results at low levels of sequence identity. Our goal in the current work was to develop an algorithm that could overcome these difficulties and facilitate the identification of structurally (and possibly functionally) relevant residue-residue correspondences between compared protein structures. Here we present StralSV, a new algorithm for detecting closely related structure fragments and quantifying residue frequency from tight local structure alignments. We apply StralSV in a study of the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase of poliovirus and demonstrate that the algorithm can be used to determine regions of the protein that are relatively unique or that shared structural similarity with structures that are distantly related. By quantifying residue frequencies among many residue-residue pairs extracted from local alignments, one can infer potential structural or functional importance of specific residues that are determined to be highly conserved or that deviate from a consensus. We further demonstrate that considerable detailed structural and phylogenetic information can be derived from StralSV analyses. StralSV is a new structure-based algorithm for identifying and aligning structure fragments that have similarity to a reference protein. StralSV analysis can be used to quantify residue-residue correspondences and identify residues that may be of particular structural or functional importance, as well as unusual or unexpected

  11. Nanoscale stiffness topography reveals structure and mechanics of the transport barrier in intact nuclear pore complexes

    Bestembayeva, Aizhan; Kramer, Armin; Labokha, Aksana A.; Osmanović, Dino; Liashkovich, Ivan; Orlova, Elena V.; Ford, Ian J.; Charras, Guillaume; Fassati, Ariberto; Hoogenboom, Bart W.

    2015-01-01

    The nuclear pore complex (NPC) is the gate for transport between the cell nucleus and the cytoplasm. Small molecules cross the NPC by passive diffusion, but molecules larger than ∼5 nm must bind to nuclear transport receptors to overcome a selective barrier within the NPC. Although the structure and shape of the cytoplasmic ring of the NPC are relatively well characterized, the selective barrier is situated deep within the central channel of the NPC and depends critically on unstructured nuclear pore proteins, and is therefore not well understood. Here, we show that stiffness topography with sharp atomic force microscopy tips can generate nanoscale cross-sections of the NPC. The cross-sections reveal two distinct structures, a cytoplasmic ring and a central plug structure, which are consistent with the three-dimensional NPC structure derived from electron microscopy. The central plug persists after reactivation of the transport cycle and resultant cargo release, indicating that the plug is an intrinsic part of the NPC barrier. Added nuclear transport receptors accumulate on the intact transport barrier and lead to a homogenization of the barrier stiffness. The observed nanomechanical properties in the NPC indicate the presence of a cohesive barrier to transport and are quantitatively consistent with the presence of a central condensate of nuclear pore proteins in the NPC channel.

  12. Structure and Evolution of the Lunar Procellarum Region as Revealed by GRAIL Gravity Data

    Andrews-Hanna, Jeffrey C.; Besserer, Jonathan; Head, James W., III; Howett, Carly J. A.; Kiefer, Walter S.; Lucey, Paul J.; McGovern, Patrick J.; Melosh, H. Jay; Neumann, Gregory A.; Phillips, Roger J.; hide

    2014-01-01

    The Procellarum region is a broad area on the nearside of the Moon that is characterized by low elevations, thin crust, and high surface concentrations of the heat-producing elements uranium, thorium, and potassium. The Procellarum region has been interpreted as an ancient impact basin approximately 3200 km in diameter, though supporting evidence at the surface would have been largely obscured as a result of the great antiquity and poor preservation of any diagnostic features. Here we use data from the Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) mission to examine the subsurface structure of Procellarum. The Bouguer gravity anomalies and gravity gradients reveal a pattern of narrow linear anomalies that border the Procellarum region and are interpreted to be the frozen remnants of lava-filled rifts and the underlying feeder dikes that served as the magma plumbing system for much of the nearside mare volcanism. The discontinuous surface structures that were earlier interpreted as remnants of an impact basin rim are shown in GRAIL data to be a part of this continuous set of quasi-rectangular border structures with angular intersections, contrary to the expected circular or elliptical shape of an impact basin. The spatial pattern of magmatic-tectonic structures bounding Procellarum is consistent with their formation in response to thermal stresses produced by the differential cooling of the province relative to its surroundings, coupled with magmatic activity driven by the elevated heat flux in the region.

  13. The Structure of the MAP2K MEK6 Reveals an Autoinhibitory Dimer

    Min, Xiaoshan; Akella, Radha; He, Haixia; Humphreys, John M.; Tsutakawa, Susan E.; Lee, Seung-Jae; Tainer, John A.; Cobb, Melanie H.; Goldsmith, Elizabeth J.

    2009-07-13

    MAP2Ks are dual-specificity protein kinases functioning at the center of three-tiered MAP kinase modules. The structure of the kinase domain of the MAP2K MEK6 with phosphorylation site mimetic aspartic acid mutations (MEK6/{Delta}N/DD) has been solved at 2.3 {angstrom} resolution. The structure reveals an autoinhibited elongated ellipsoidal dimer. The enzyme adopts an inactive conformation, based upon structural queues, despite the phosphomimetic mutations. Gel filtration and small-angle X-ray scattering analysis confirm that the crystallographically observed ellipsoidal dimer is a feature of MEK6/{Delta}N/DD and full-length unphosphorylated wild-type MEK6 in solution. The interface includes the phosphate binding ribbon of each subunit, part of the activation loop, and a rare 'arginine stack' between symmetry-related arginine residues in the N-terminal lobe. The autoinhibited structure likely confers specificity on active MAP2Ks. The dimer may also serve the function in unphosphorylated MEK6 of preventing activation loop phosphorylation by inappropriate kinases.

  14. A Butterfly in the Making: Revealing the Near-Infrared Structure of Hubble 12

    Hora, Joseph L.; Latter, William B.

    1996-01-01

    We present deep narrowband near-IR images and moderate resolution spectra of the young planetary nebula Hubble 12. These data are the first to show clearly the complex structure for this important planetary nebula. Images were obtained at lambda = 2.12, 2.16, and 2.26 micron. The lambda = 2.12 Am image reveals the bipolar nature of the nebula, as well as complex structure near the central star in the equatorial region. The images show an elliptical region of emission, which may indicate a ring or a cylindrical source structure. This structure is possibly related to the mechanism that is producing the bipolar flow. The spectra show the nature of several distinct components. The central object is dominated by recombination lines of H I and He I. The core is not a significant source of molecular hydrogen emission. The east position in the equatorial region is rich in lines of ultraviolet-excited fluorescent H2. A spectrum of part of the central region shows strong [Fe II] emission, which might indicate the presence of shocks.

  15. Rat hepatic β2-adrenergic receptor: structural similarities to the rat fat cell β1-adrenergic receptor

    Graziano, M.P.

    1984-01-01

    The mammalian β 2 -adrenergic receptor from rat liver has been purified by sequential cycles of affinity chromatography followed by steric-exclusion high performance liquid chromatography. Electrophoresis of highly purified receptor preparations on polyacrylamide gels in the presence of sodium dodecyl sulfate under reducing conditions reveals a single peptide M/sub r/ = 67,000, as judged by silver staining. Purified β 2 -adrenergic receptor migrates on steric-exclusion high performance liquid chromatography in two peaks, with M/sub r/ = 140,000 and 67,000. Specific binding of the high affinity, β-adrenergic receptor antagonists (-)[ 3 H]dihydroalprenolol and (-)[ 125 I]iodocyanopindolol to purified rat liver β-adrenergic receptor preparations displays stereoselectivity for (-)isomers of agonists and a rank order of potencies for agonists characteristics of a β 2 -adrenergic receptor. Radioiodinated, β 1 -adrenergic receptors from rat fat cells and β 2 -adrenergic receptors from rat liver purified in the presence of protease inhibitors comigrate in electrophoretic separations on polyacrylamide gels in the presence of sodium dodecyl sulfate as 67,000-M/sub r/ peptides. Autoradiograms of two dimensional partial proteolytic digests of the purified, radioiodinated rat liver β 2 -adrenergic receptor, generated with α-chymotrypsin, S. aureus V8 protease and elastase reveal a pattern of peptide fragments essentially identical to those generated by partial proteolytic digests of the purified, radioiodinated β 1 -adrenergic receptor from rat fat cells, by these same proteases. These data indicate that a high degree of homology exists between these two pharmacologically distinct mammalian β-adrenergic receptor proteins

  16. Comparison of S. cerevisiae F-BAR domain structures reveals a conserved inositol phosphate binding site

    Moravcevic, Katarina; Alvarado, Diego; Schmitz, Karl R.; Kenniston, Jon A.; Mendrola, Jeannine M.; Ferguson, Kathryn M.; Lemmon, Mark A.

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY F-BAR domains control membrane interactions in endocytosis, cytokinesis, and cell signaling. Although generally thought to bind curved membranes containing negatively charged phospholipids, numerous functional studies argue that differences in lipid-binding selectivities of F-BAR domains are functionally important. Here, we compare membrane-binding properties of the S. cerevisiae F-BAR domains in vitro and in vivo. Whereas some F-BAR domains (such as Bzz1p and Hof1p F-BARs) bind equally well to all phospholipids, the F-BAR domain from the RhoGAP Rgd1p preferentially binds phosphoinositides. We determined X-ray crystal structures of F-BAR domains from Hof1p and Rgd1p, the latter bound to an inositol phosphate. The structures explain phospholipid-binding selectivity differences, and reveal an F-BAR phosphoinositide binding site that is fully conserved in a mammalian RhoGAP called Gmip, and is partly retained in certain other F-BAR domains. Our findings reveal previously unappreciated determinants of F-BAR domain lipid-binding specificity, and provide a basis for its prediction from sequence. PMID:25620000

  17. Altered brain structural networks in attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder children revealed by cortical thickness.

    Liu, Tian; Chen, Yanni; Li, Chenxi; Li, Youjun; Wang, Jue

    2017-07-04

    This study investigated the cortical thickness and topological features of human brain anatomical networks related to attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Data were collected from 40 attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder children and 40 normal control children. Interregional correlation matrices were established by calculating the correlations of cortical thickness between all pairs of cortical regions (68 regions) of the whole brain. Further thresholds were applied to create binary matrices to construct a series of undirected and unweighted graphs, and global, local, and nodal efficiencies were computed as a function of the network cost. These experimental results revealed abnormal cortical thickness and correlations in attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, and showed that the brain structural networks of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder subjects had inefficient small-world topological features. Furthermore, their topological properties were altered abnormally. In particular, decreased global efficiency combined with increased local efficiency in attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder children led to a disorder-related shift of the network topological structure toward regular networks. In addition, nodal efficiency, cortical thickness, and correlation analyses revealed that several brain regions were altered in attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder patients. These findings are in accordance with a hypothesis of dysfunctional integration and segregation of the brain in patients with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder and provide further evidence of brain dysfunction in attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder patients by observing cortical thickness on magnetic resonance imaging.

  18. EXPLORATORY DATA ANALYSIS AND MULTIVARIATE STRATEGIES FOR REVEALING MULTIVARIATE STRUCTURES IN CLIMATE DATA

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper is on data analysis strategy in a complex, multidimensional, and dynamic domain. The focus is on the use of data mining techniques to explore the importance of multivariate structures; using climate variables which influences climate change. Techniques involved in data mining exercise vary according to the data structures. The multivariate analysis strategy considered here involved choosing an appropriate tool to analyze a process. Factor analysis is introduced into data mining technique in order to reveal the influencing impacts of factors involved as well as solving for multicolinearity effect among the variables. The temporal nature and multidimensionality of the target variables is revealed in the model using multidimensional regression estimates. The strategy of integrating the method of several statistical techniques, using climate variables in Nigeria was employed. R2 of 0.518 was obtained from the ordinary least square regression analysis carried out and the test was not significant at 5% level of significance. However, factor analysis regression strategy gave a good fit with R2 of 0.811 and the test was significant at 5% level of significance. Based on this study, model building should go beyond the usual confirmatory data analysis (CDA, rather it should be complemented with exploratory data analysis (EDA in order to achieve a desired result.

  19. A genome wide survey of SNP variation reveals the genetic structure of sheep breeds.

    James W Kijas

    Full Text Available The genetic structure of sheep reflects their domestication and subsequent formation into discrete breeds. Understanding genetic structure is essential for achieving genetic improvement through genome-wide association studies, genomic selection and the dissection of quantitative traits. After identifying the first genome-wide set of SNP for sheep, we report on levels of genetic variability both within and between a diverse sample of ovine populations. Then, using cluster analysis and the partitioning of genetic variation, we demonstrate sheep are characterised by weak phylogeographic structure, overlapping genetic similarity and generally low differentiation which is consistent with their short evolutionary history. The degree of population substructure was, however, sufficient to cluster individuals based on geographic origin and known breed history. Specifically, African and Asian populations clustered separately from breeds of European origin sampled from Australia, New Zealand, Europe and North America. Furthermore, we demonstrate the presence of stratification within some, but not all, ovine breeds. The results emphasize that careful documentation of genetic structure will be an essential prerequisite when mapping the genetic basis of complex traits. Furthermore, the identification of a subset of SNP able to assign individuals into broad groupings demonstrates even a small panel of markers may be suitable for applications such as traceability.

  20. On the Development and Use of Large Chemical Similarity Networks, Informatics Best Practices and Novel Chemical Descriptors Towards Materials Quantitative Structure Property Relationships

    Krein, Michael

    After decades of development and use in a variety of application areas, Quantitative Structure Property Relationships (QSPRs) and related descriptor-based statistical learning methods have achieved a level of infamy due to their misuse. The field is rife with past examples of overtrained models, overoptimistic performance assessment, and outright cheating in the form of explicitly removing data to fit models. These actions do not serve the community well, nor are they beneficial to future predictions based on established models. In practice, in order to select combinations of descriptors and machine learning methods that might work best, one must consider the nature and size of the training and test datasets, be aware of existing hypotheses about the data, and resist the temptation to bias structure representation and modeling to explicitly fit the hypotheses. The definition and application of these best practices is important for obtaining actionable modeling outcomes, and for setting user expectations of modeling accuracy when predicting the endpoint values of unknowns. A wide variety of statistical learning approaches, descriptor types, and model validation strategies are explored herein, with the goals of helping end users understand the factors involved in creating and using QSPR models effectively, and to better understand relationships within the data, especially by looking at the problem space from multiple perspectives. Molecular relationships are commonly envisioned in a continuous high-dimensional space of numerical descriptors, referred to as chemistry space. Descriptor and similarity metric choice influence the partitioning of this space into regions corresponding to local structural similarity. These regions, known as domains of applicability, are most likely to be successfully modeled by a QSPR. In Chapter 2, the network topology and scaling relationships of several chemistry spaces are thoroughly investigated. Chemistry spaces studied include the

  1. The Structures of Coiled-Coil Domains from Type III Secretion System Translocators Reveal Homology to Pore-Forming Toxins

    Barta, Michael L.; Dickenson, Nicholas E.; Patil, Mrinalini; Keightley, Andrew; Wyckoff, Gerald J.; Picking, William D.; Picking, Wendy L.; Geisbrecht, Brian V. (UMKC); (OKLU)

    2012-03-26

    Many pathogenic Gram-negative bacteria utilize type III secretion systems (T3SSs) to alter the normal functions of target cells. Shigella flexneri uses its T3SS to invade human intestinal cells to cause bacillary dysentery (shigellosis) that is responsible for over one million deaths per year. The Shigella type III secretion apparatus is composed of a basal body spanning both bacterial membranes and an exposed oligomeric needle. Host altering effectors are secreted through this energized unidirectional conduit to promote bacterial invasion. The active needle tip complex of S. flexneri is composed of a tip protein, IpaD, and two pore-forming translocators, IpaB and IpaC. While the atomic structure of IpaD has been elucidated and studied, structural data on the hydrophobic translocators from the T3SS family remain elusive. We present here the crystal structures of a protease-stable fragment identified within the N-terminal regions of IpaB from S. flexneri and SipB from Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium determined at 2.1 {angstrom} and 2.8 {angstrom} limiting resolution, respectively. These newly identified domains are composed of extended-length (114 {angstrom} in IpaB and 71 {angstrom} in SipB) coiled-coil motifs that display a high degree of structural homology to one another despite the fact that they share only 21% sequence identity. Further structural comparisons also reveal substantial similarity to the coiled-coil regions of pore-forming proteins from other Gram-negative pathogens, notably, colicin Ia. This suggests that these mechanistically separate and functionally distinct membrane-targeting proteins may have diverged from a common ancestor during the course of pathogen-specific evolutionary events.

  2. Structure-Related Roles for the Conservation of the HIV-1 Fusion Peptide Sequence Revealed by Nuclear Magnetic Resonance.

    Serrano, Soraya; Huarte, Nerea; Rujas, Edurne; Andreu, David; Nieva, José L; Jiménez, María Angeles

    2017-10-17

    Despite extensive characterization of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) hydrophobic fusion peptide (FP), the structure-function relationships underlying its extraordinary degree of conservation remain poorly understood. Specifically, the fact that the tandem repeat of the FLGFLG tripeptide is absolutely conserved suggests that high hydrophobicity may not suffice to unleash FP function. Here, we have compared the nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) structures adopted in nonpolar media by two FP surrogates, wtFP-tag and scrFP-tag, which had equal hydrophobicity but contained wild-type and scrambled core sequences LFLGFLG and FGLLGFL, respectively. In addition, these peptides were tagged at their C-termini with an epitope sequence that folded independently, thereby allowing Western blot detection without interfering with FP structure. We observed similar α-helical FP conformations for both specimens dissolved in the low-polarity medium 25% (v/v) 1,1,1,3,3,3-hexafluoro-2-propanol (HFIP), but important differences in contact with micelles of the membrane mimetic dodecylphosphocholine (DPC). Thus, whereas wtFP-tag preserved a helix displaying a Gly-rich ridge, the scrambled sequence lost in great part the helical structure upon being solubilized in DPC. Western blot analyses further revealed the capacity of wtFP-tag to assemble trimers in membranes, whereas membrane oligomers were not observed in the case of the scrFP-tag sequence. We conclude that, beyond hydrophobicity, preserving sequence order is an important feature for defining the secondary structures and oligomeric states adopted by the HIV FP in membranes.

  3. Three-dimensional Crustal Structure beneath the Tibetan Plateau Revealed by Multi-scale Gravity Analysis

    Xu, C.; Luo, Z.; Sun, R.; Li, Q.

    2017-12-01

    The Tibetan Plateau, the largest and highest plateau on Earth, was uplifted, shorten and thicken by the collision and continuous convergence of the Indian and Eurasian plates since 50 million years ago, the Eocene epoch. Fine three-dimensional crustal structure of the Tibetan Plateau is helpful in understanding the tectonic development. At present, the ordinary method used for revealing crustal structure is seismic method, which is inhibited by poor seismic station coverage, especially in the central and western plateau primarily due to the rugged terrain. Fortunately, with the implementation of satellite gravity missions, gravity field models have demonstrated unprecedented global-scale accuracy and spatial resolution, which can subsequently be employed to study the crustal structure of the entire Tibetan Plateau. This study inverts three-dimensional crustal density and Moho topography of the Tibetan Plateau from gravity data using multi-scale gravity analysis. The inverted results are in agreement with those provided by the previous works. Besides, they can reveal rich tectonic development of the Tibetan Plateau: (1) The low-density channel flow can be observed from the inverted crustal density; (2) The Moho depth in the west is deeper than that in the east, and the deepest Moho, which is approximately 77 km, is located beneath the western Qiangtang Block; (3) The Moho fold, the directions of which are in agreement with the results of surface movement velocities estimated from Global Positioning System, exists clearly on the Moho topography.This study is supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 41504015), the China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (Grant No. 2015M572146), and the Surveying and Mapping Basic Research Programme of the National Administration of Surveying, Mapping and Geoinformation (Grant No. 15-01-08).

  4. Structure of the hDmc1-ssDNA filament reveals the principles of its architecture.

    Andrei L Okorokov

    Full Text Available In eukaryotes, meiotic recombination is a major source of genetic diversity, but its defects in humans lead to abnormalities such as Down's, Klinefelter's and other syndromes. Human Dmc1 (hDmc1, a RecA/Rad51 homologue, is a recombinase that plays a crucial role in faithful chromosome segregation during meiosis. The initial step of homologous recombination occurs when hDmc1 forms a filament on single-stranded (ss DNA. However the structure of this presynaptic complex filament for hDmc1 remains unknown. To compare hDmc1-ssDNA complexes to those known for the RecA/Rad51 family we have obtained electron microscopy (EM structures of hDmc1-ssDNA nucleoprotein filaments using single particle approach. The EM maps were analysed by docking crystal structures of Dmc1, Rad51, RadA, RecA and DNA. To fully characterise hDmc1-DNA complexes we have analysed their organisation in the presence of Ca2+, Mg2+, ATP, AMP-PNP, ssDNA and dsDNA. The 3D EM structures of the hDmc1-ssDNA filaments allowed us to elucidate the principles of their internal architecture. Similar to the RecA/Rad51 family, hDmc1 forms helical filaments on ssDNA in two states: extended (active and compressed (inactive. However, in contrast to the RecA/Rad51 family, and the recently reported structure of hDmc1-double stranded (ds DNA nucleoprotein filaments, the extended (active state of the hDmc1 filament formed on ssDNA has nine protomers per helical turn, instead of the conventional six, resulting in one protomer covering two nucleotides instead of three. The control reconstruction of the hDmc1-dsDNA filament revealed 6.4 protein subunits per helical turn indicating that the filament organisation varies depending on the DNA templates. Our structural analysis has also revealed that the N-terminal domain of hDmc1 accomplishes its important role in complex formation through domain swapping between adjacent protomers, thus providing a mechanistic basis for coordinated action of hDmc1 protomers

  5. The crystal structure of the AhRR-ARNT heterodimer reveals the structural basis of the repression of AhR-mediated transcription.

    Sakurai, Shunya; Shimizu, Toshiyuki; Ohto, Umeharu

    2017-10-27

    2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo- p -dioxin and related compounds are extraordinarily potent environmental toxic pollutants. Most of the 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo- p -dioxin toxicities are mediated by aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR), a ligand-dependent transcription factor belonging to the basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) Per-ARNT-Sim (PAS) family. Upon ligand binding, AhR forms a heterodimer with AhR nuclear translocator (ARNT) and induces the expression of genes involved in various biological responses. One of the genes induced by AhR encodes AhR repressor (AhRR), which also forms a heterodimer with ARNT and represses the activation of AhR-dependent transcription. The control of AhR activation is critical for managing AhR-mediated diseases, but the mechanisms by which AhRR represses AhR activation remain poorly understood, because of the lack of structural information. Here, we determined the structure of the AhRR-ARNT heterodimer by X-ray crystallography, which revealed an asymmetric intertwined domain organization presenting structural features that are both conserved and distinct among bHLH-PAS family members. The structures of AhRR-ARNT and AhR-ARNT were similar in the bHLH-PAS-A region, whereas the PAS-B of ARNT in the AhRR-ARNT complex exhibited a different domain arrangement in this family reported so far. The structure clearly disclosed that AhRR competitively represses AhR binding to ARNT and target DNA and further suggested the existence of an AhRR-ARNT-specific repression mechanism. This study provides a structural basis for understanding the mechanism by which AhRR represses AhR-mediated gene transcription. © 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  6. Using sparse LU factorisation to precondition GMRES for a family of similarly structured matrices arising from process modelling

    Brooking, C. [Univ. of Bath (United Kingdom)

    1996-12-31

    Process engineering software is used to simulate the operation of large chemical plants. Such simulations are used for a variety of tasks, including operator training. For the software to be of practical use for this, dynamic simulations need to run in real-time. The models that the simulation is based upon are written in terms of Differential Algebraic Equations (DAE`s). In the numerical time-integration of systems of DAE`s using an implicit method such as backward Euler, the solution of nonlinear systems is required at each integration point. When solved using Newton`s method, this leads to the repeated solution of nonsymmetric sparse linear systems. These systems range in size from 500 to 20,000 variables. A typical integration may require around 3000 timesteps, and if 4 Newton iterates were needed on each time step, then this means approximately 12,000 linear systems must be solved. The matrices produced by the simulations have a similar sparsity pattern throughout the integration. They are also severely ill-conditioned, and have widely-scattered spectra.

  7. X-ray structure reveals a new class and provides insight into evolution of alkaline phosphatases.

    Subhash C Bihani

    Full Text Available The alkaline phosphatase (AP is a bi-metalloenzyme of potential applications in biotechnology and bioremediation, in which phosphate monoesters are nonspecifically hydrolysed under alkaline conditions to yield inorganic phosphate. The hydrolysis occurs through an enzyme intermediate in which the catalytic residue is phosphorylated. The reaction, which also requires a third metal ion, is proposed to proceed through a mechanism of in-line displacement involving a trigonal bipyramidal transition state. Stabilizing the transition state by bidentate hydrogen bonding has been suggested to be the reason for conservation of an arginine residue in the active site. We report here the first crystal structure of alkaline phosphatase purified from the bacterium Sphingomonas. sp. Strain BSAR-1 (SPAP. The crystal structure reveals many differences from other APs: 1 the catalytic residue is a threonine instead of serine, 2 there is no third metal ion binding pocket, and 3 the arginine residue forming bidentate hydrogen bonding is deleted in SPAP. A lysine and an aspargine residue, recruited together for the first time into the active site, bind the substrate phosphoryl group in a manner not observed before in any other AP. These and other structural features suggest that SPAP represents a new class of APs. Because of its direct contact with the substrate phosphoryl group, the lysine residue is proposed to play a significant role in catalysis. The structure is consistent with a mechanism of in-line displacement via a trigonal bipyramidal transition state. The structure provides important insights into evolutionary relationships between members of AP superfamily.

  8. Monin-Obukhov Similarity Functions of the Structure Parameter of Temperature and Turbulent Kinetic Energy Dissipation Rate in the Stable Boundary Layer

    Hartogensis, O.K.; Debruin, H.A.R.

    2005-01-01

    The Monin-Obukhov similarity theory (MOST) functions fepsi; and fT, of the dissipation rate of turbulent kinetic energy (TKE), ¿, and the structure parameter of temperature, CT2, were determined for the stable atmospheric surface layer using data gathered in the context of CASES-99. These data cover

  9. Herbarium specimens reveal a historical shift in phylogeographic structure of common ragweed during native range disturbance.

    Martin, Michael D; Zimmer, Elizabeth A; Olsen, Morten T; Foote, Andrew D; Gilbert, M Thomas P; Brush, Grace S

    2014-04-01

    Invasive plants provide ample opportunity to study evolutionary shifts that occur after introduction to novel environments. However, although genetic characters pre-dating introduction can be important determinants of later success, large-scale investigations of historical genetic structure have not been feasible. Common ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia L.) is an invasive weed native to North America that is known for its allergenic pollen. Palynological records from sediment cores indicate that this species was uncommon before European colonization of North America, and ragweed populations expanded rapidly as settlers deforested the landscape on a massive scale, later becoming an aggressive invasive with populations established globally. Towards a direct comparison of genetic structure now and during intense anthropogenic disturbance of the late 19th century, we sampled 45 natural populations of common ragweed across its native range as well as historical herbarium specimens collected up to 140 years ago. Bayesian clustering analyses of 453 modern and 473 historical samples genotyped at three chloroplast spacer regions and six nuclear microsatellite loci reveal that historical ragweed's spatial genetic structure mirrors both the palaeo-record of Ambrosia pollen deposition and the historical pattern of agricultural density across the landscape. Furthermore, for unknown reasons, this spatial genetic pattern has changed substantially in the intervening years. Following on previous work relating morphology and genetic expression between plants collected from eastern North America and Western Europe, we speculate that the cluster associated with humans' rapid transformation of the landscape is a likely source of these aggressive invasive populations. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. X-ray CT Scanning Reveals Long-Term Copper Pollution Effects on Functional Soil Structure

    Naveed, Muhammad; Møldrup, Per; Homstrup, Martin

    Soil structure plays the main role in the ability of the soil to fulfill essential soil functions such as the root growth, rate of water infiltration and retention, transport of gaseous and chemicals/pollutants through the soil. Soil structure is a dynamic soil property and affected by various...... factors such as soil type, land use, and soil contamination. In this study, we quantified the soil structure using X-ray CT scanning and revealed the effect of a long history of Copper (Cu) pollution on it. A fallow field at Hygum Denmark provides this opportunity as it had a long history of Copper...... sulphate contamination in a gradient with Cu content varies from 21 mg kg-1 to 3837 mg kg-1. Total 20 intact soil columns (diameter of 10 cm and height of 8 cm) were sampled at five locations along the Cu-gradient from a depth of 5 to 15 cm below surface level. The soil columns were scanned at a voxel...

  11. Patterned biofilm formation reveals a mechanism for structural heterogeneity in bacterial biofilms.

    Gu, Huan; Hou, Shuyu; Yongyat, Chanokpon; De Tore, Suzanne; Ren, Dacheng

    2013-09-03

    Bacterial biofilms are ubiquitous and are the major cause of chronic infections in humans and persistent biofouling in industry. Despite the significance of bacterial biofilms, the mechanism of biofilm formation and associated drug tolerance is still not fully understood. A major challenge in biofilm research is the intrinsic heterogeneity in the biofilm structure, which leads to temporal and spatial variation in cell density and gene expression. To understand and control such structural heterogeneity, surfaces with patterned functional alkanthiols were used in this study to obtain Escherichia coli cell clusters with systematically varied cluster size and distance between clusters. The results from quantitative imaging analysis revealed an interesting phenomenon in which multicellular connections can be formed between cell clusters depending on the size of interacting clusters and the distance between them. In addition, significant differences in patterned biofilm formation were observed between wild-type E. coli RP437 and some of its isogenic mutants, indicating that certain cellular and genetic factors are involved in interactions among cell clusters. In particular, autoinducer-2-mediated quorum sensing was found to be important. Collectively, these results provide missing information that links cell-to-cell signaling and interaction among cell clusters to the structural organization of bacterial biofilms.

  12. Crystal Structure of Homo Sapiens PTD012 Reveals a Zinc-Containing Hydrolase Fold

    Manjasetty,B.; Bussow, K.; Fieber-ErdMan, M.; Roske, Y.; Gobam, J.; Scheich, C.; Gotz, F.; Niesen, F.; Heinemann, U.

    2006-01-01

    The human protein PTD012 is the longer product of an alternatively spliced gene and was described to be localized in the nucleus. The X-ray structure analysis at 1.7 Angstroms resolution of PTD012 through SAD phasing reveals a monomeric protein and a novel fold. The shorter splice form was also studied and appears to be unfolded and non-functional. The structure of PTD012 displays an {alpha}{beta}{beta}{alpha} four-layer topology. A metal ion residing between the central {beta}-sheets is partially coordinated by three histidine residues. X-ray absorption near-edge structure (XANES) analysis identifies the PTD012-bound ion as Zn{sup 2+}. Tetrahedral coordination of the ion is completed by the carboxylate oxygen atom of an acetate molecule taken up from the crystallization buffer. The binding of Zn{sup 2+} to PTD012 is reminiscent of zinc-containing enzymes such as carboxypeptidase, carbonic anhydrase, and {beta}-lactamase. Biochemical assays failed to demonstrate any of these enzyme activities in PTD012. However, PTD012 exhibits ester hydrolase activity on the substrate p-nitrophenyl acetate.

  13. Crystal structure of the Haemophilus influenzae Hap adhesin reveals an intercellular oligomerization mechanism for bacterial aggregation

    Meng, Guoyu; Spahich, Nicole; Kenjale, Roma; Waksman, Gabriel; St Geme, Joseph W

    2011-01-01

    Bacterial biofilms are complex microbial communities that are common in nature and are being recognized increasingly as an important determinant of bacterial virulence. However, the structural determinants of bacterial aggregation and eventual biofilm formation have been poorly defined. In Gram-negative bacteria, a major subgroup of extracellular proteins called self-associating autotransporters (SAATs) can mediate cell–cell adhesion and facilitate biofilm formation. In this study, we used the Haemophilus influenzae Hap autotransporter as a prototype SAAT to understand how bacteria associate with each other. The crystal structure of the H. influenzae HapS passenger domain (harbouring the SAAT domain) was determined to 2.2 Å by X-ray crystallography, revealing an unprecedented intercellular oligomerization mechanism for cell–cell interaction. The C-terminal SAAT domain folds into a triangular-prism-like structure that can mediate Hap–Hap dimerization and higher degrees of multimerization through its F1–F2 edge and F2 face. The intercellular multimerization can give rise to massive buried surfaces that are required for overcoming the repulsive force between cells, leading to bacterial cell–cell interaction and formation of complex microcolonies. PMID:21841773

  14. Time-Resolved Soft X-ray Diffraction Reveals Transient Structural Distortions of Ternary Liquid Crystals

    Klaus Mann

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Home-based soft X-ray time-resolved scattering experiments with nanosecond time resolution (10 ns and nanometer spatial resolution were carried out at a table top soft X-ray plasma source (2.2–5.2 nm. The investigated system was the lyotropic liquid crystal C16E7/paraffin/glycerol/formamide/IR 5. Usually, major changes in physical, chemical, and/or optical properties of the sample occur as a result of structural changes and shrinking morphology. Here, these effects occur as a consequence of the energy absorption in the sample upon optical laser excitation in the IR regime. The liquid crystal shows changes in the structural response within few hundred nanoseconds showing a time decay of 182 ns. A decrease of the Bragg peak diffracted intensity of 30% and a coherent macroscopic movement of the Bragg reflection are found as a response to the optical pump. The Bragg reflection movement is established to be isotropic and diffusion controlled (1 μs. Structural processes are analyzed in the Patterson analysis framework of the time-varying diffraction peaks revealing that the inter-lamellar distance increases by 2.7 Å resulting in an elongation of the coherently expanding lamella crystallite. The present studies emphasize the possibility of applying TR-SXRD techniques for studying the mechanical dynamics of nanosystems.

  15. The enzymes of biotin dependent CO2 metabolism: What structures reveal about their reaction mechanisms

    Waldrop, Grover L; Holden, Hazel M; Maurice, Martin St

    2012-01-01

    Biotin is the major cofactor involved in carbon dioxide metabolism. Indeed, biotin-dependent enzymes are ubiquitous in nature and are involved in a myriad of metabolic processes including fatty acid synthesis and gluconeogenesis. The cofactor, itself, is composed of a ureido ring, a tetrahydrothiophene ring, and a valeric acid side chain. It is the ureido ring that functions as the CO2 carrier. A complete understanding of biotin-dependent enzymes is critically important for translational research in light of the fact that some of these enzymes serve as targets for anti-obesity agents, antibiotics, and herbicides. Prior to 1990, however, there was a dearth of information regarding the molecular architectures of biotin-dependent enzymes. In recent years there has been an explosion in the number of three-dimensional structures reported for these proteins. Here we review our current understanding of the structures and functions of biotin-dependent enzymes. In addition, we provide a critical analysis of what these structures have and have not revealed about biotin-dependent catalysis. PMID:22969052

  16. The structure of the TFIIH p34 subunit reveals a von Willebrand factor A like fold.

    Dominik R Schmitt

    Full Text Available RNA polymerase II dependent transcription and nucleotide excision repair are mediated by a multifaceted interplay of subunits within the general transcription factor II H (TFIIH. A better understanding of the molecular structure of TFIIH is the key to unravel the mechanism of action of this versatile protein complex within these vital cellular processes. The importance of this complex becomes further evident in the context of severe diseases like xeroderma pigmentosum, Cockayne's syndrome and trichothiodystrophy, that arise from single point mutations in TFIIH subunits. Here we describe the structure of the p34 subunit of the TFIIH complex from the eukaryotic thermophilic fungus Chaetomium thermophilum. The structure revealed that p34 contains a von Willebrand Factor A (vWA like domain, a fold which is generally known to be involved in protein-protein interactions. Within TFIIH p34 strongly interacts with p44, a positive regulator of the helicase XPD. Putative protein-protein interfaces are analyzed and possible binding sites for the p34-p44 interaction suggested.

  17. Genetic structure of South African Nguni (Zulu) sheep populations reveals admixture with exotic breeds.

    Selepe, Mokhethi Matthews; Ceccobelli, Simone; Lasagna, Emiliano; Kunene, Nokuthula Winfred

    2018-01-01

    The population of Zulu sheep is reported to have declined by 7.4% between 2007 and 2011 due to crossbreeding. There is insufficient information on the genetic diversity of the Zulu sheep populations in the different area of KwaZulu Natal where they are reared. The study investigated genetic variation and genetic structure within and among eight Zulu sheep populations using 26 microsatellite markers. In addition, Damara, Dorper and South African Merino breeds were included to assess the genetic relationship between these breeds and the Zulu sheep. The results showed that there is considerable genetic diversity among the Zulu sheep populations (expected heterozygosity ranging from 0.57 to 0.69) and the level of inbreeding was not remarkable. The structure analysis results revealed that Makhathini Research Station and UNIZULU research station share common genetic structure, while three populations (Nongoma, Ulundi and Nquthu) had some admixture with the exotic Dorper breed. Thus, there is a need for sustainable breeding and conservation programmes to control the gene flow, in order to stop possible genetic dilution of the Zulu sheep.

  18. Genetic structure of South African Nguni (Zulu sheep populations reveals admixture with exotic breeds.

    Mokhethi Matthews Selepe

    Full Text Available The population of Zulu sheep is reported to have declined by 7.4% between 2007 and 2011 due to crossbreeding. There is insufficient information on the genetic diversity of the Zulu sheep populations in the different area of KwaZulu Natal where they are reared. The study investigated genetic variation and genetic structure within and among eight Zulu sheep populations using 26 microsatellite markers. In addition, Damara, Dorper and South African Merino breeds were included to assess the genetic relationship between these breeds and the Zulu sheep. The results showed that there is considerable genetic diversity among the Zulu sheep populations (expected heterozygosity ranging from 0.57 to 0.69 and the level of inbreeding was not remarkable. The structure analysis results revealed that Makhathini Research Station and UNIZULU research station share common genetic structure, while three populations (Nongoma, Ulundi and Nquthu had some admixture with the exotic Dorper breed. Thus, there is a need for sustainable breeding and conservation programmes to control the gene flow, in order to stop possible genetic dilution of the Zulu sheep.

  19. Processes of Similarity Judgment

    Larkey, Levi B.; Markman, Arthur B.

    2005-01-01

    Similarity underlies fundamental cognitive capabilities such as memory, categorization, decision making, problem solving, and reasoning. Although recent approaches to similarity appreciate the structure of mental representations, they differ in the processes posited to operate over these representations. We present an experiment that…

  20. Structure and Sequence Analyses of Clustered Protocadherins Reveal Antiparallel Interactions that Mediate Homophilic Specificity.

    Nicoludis, John M; Lau, Sze-Yi; Schärfe, Charlotta P I; Marks, Debora S; Weihofen, Wilhelm A; Gaudet, Rachelle

    2015-11-03

    Clustered protocadherin (Pcdh) proteins mediate dendritic self-avoidance in neurons via specific homophilic interactions in their extracellular cadherin (EC) domains. We determined crystal structures of EC1-EC3, containing the homophilic specificity-determining region, of two mouse clustered Pcdh isoforms (PcdhγA1 and PcdhγC3) to investigate the nature of the homophilic interaction. Within the crystal lattices, we observe antiparallel interfaces consistent with a role in trans cell-cell contact. Antiparallel dimerization is supported by evolutionary correlations. Two interfaces, located primarily on EC2-EC3, involve distinctive clustered Pcdh structure and sequence motifs, lack predicted glycosylation sites, and contain residues highly conserved in orthologs but not paralogs, pointing toward their biological significance as homophilic interaction interfaces. These two interfaces are similar yet distinct, reflecting a possible difference in interaction architecture between clustered Pcdh subfamilies. These structures initiate a molecular understanding of clustered Pcdh assemblies that are required to produce functional neuronal networks. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Revealing strong bias in common measures of galaxy properties using new inclination-independent structures

    Devour, Brian M.; Bell, Eric F.

    2017-06-01

    Accurate measurement of galaxy structures is a prerequisite for quantitative investigation of galaxy properties or evolution. Yet, the impact of galaxy inclination and dust on commonly used metrics of galaxy structure is poorly quantified. We use infrared data sets to select inclination-independent samples of disc and flattened elliptical galaxies. These samples show strong variation in Sérsic index, concentration and half-light radii with inclination. We develop novel inclination-independent galaxy structures by collapsing the light distribution in the near-infrared on to the major axis, yielding inclination-independent 'linear' measures of size and concentration. With these new metrics we select a sample of Milky Way analogue galaxies with similar stellar masses, star formation rates, sizes and concentrations. Optical luminosities, light distributions and spectral properties are all found to vary strongly with inclination: When inclining to edge-on, r-band luminosities dim by >1 magnitude, sizes decrease by a factor of 2, 'dust-corrected' estimates of star formation rate drop threefold, metallicities decrease by 0.1 dex and edge-on galaxies are half as likely to be classified as star forming. These systematic effects should be accounted for in analyses of galaxy properties.

  2. Cytotoxic and Apoptotic Effect of Structurally Similar Flavonoids on Parental and Drug-Resistant Cells of a Human Cervical Carcinoma

    Ksenija Durgo

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Flavonoids are phytochemicals characterized by a wide range of biological activities, including antioxidant activity, the ability to modulate enzyme or cell receptor activity patterns, and to interfere with essential biochemical pathways. Using HeLa cells of a human cervical carcinoma, and their drug-resistant HeLa CK subline, the effects of three structurally related flavonoids (quercetin, fisetin and luteolin have been examined, in terms of their: (i cytotoxicity, (ii influence on intracellular glutathione (GSH level, (iii influence on glutathione S-transferase (GST activity, and (iv influence on the expression of apoptosis-related genes (PARP, Bcl-2, survivin. Fisetin was more toxic to resistant HeLa CK cell line than to parental cell line, causing decreased expression of survivin in the same cell line. Concentrations of 5 μM of the examined flavonoids caused PARP degradation in parental cell line, leading HeLa cell line into apoptotic cell death. The same event was not determined in the resistant cell line. Fisetin and luteolin induce glutathione and GST in the resistant cell line, pointing to complex cellular effects which could be responsible for higher sensitivity of the resistant cell line in comparison with the parental cell line. Prooxidative nature of the investigated flavonoids was not detected, so free radical formation is not responsible for the induction of GSH, GST and proapoptotic enzymes.

  3. Superposed ruptile deformational events revealed by field and VOM structural analysis

    Kumaira, Sissa; Guadagnin, Felipe; Keller Lautert, Maiara

    2017-04-01

    interpret geometrical and kinematic data. Planar and linear structural orientations and kinematic indicators revealed superposition of three deformational events: i) compressive, ii) transtensional, and iii) extensional paleostress regimes. The compressive regime was related to a radial to pure compression with N-S horizontal maximum compression vector. This stress regime corresponds mainly to the development of dextral tension fractures and NE-SW reverse faults. The transtensional regime has NW-SE sub-horizontal extension, NE-SW horizontal compressional, and sub-vertical intermediate tensors, generating mainly shear fractures by reactivation of the metamorphic foliation (anisotropy), NE-SW reverse faults and NE-vertical veins and gashes. The extensional regime of strike-slip type presents a NE-SW sub-horizontal extension and NW-SE trending sub-vertical maximum compression vector. Structures related to this regime are sub-vertical tension gashes, conjugate fractures and NW-SE normal faults. Cross-cutting relations show that compression was followed by transtension, which reactivate the ductile foliation, and in the last stage, extension dominated. Most important findings show that: i) local stress fields can modify expected geometry and ii) anisotropy developed by previous structures control the nucleation of new fractures and reactivations. Use of field data integrated in a VOM has great potential as analogues for structured reservoirs.

  4. Molecular similarity measures.

    Maggiora, Gerald M; Shanmugasundaram, Veerabahu

    2011-01-01

    Molecular similarity is a pervasive concept in chemistry. It is essential to many aspects of chemical reasoning and analysis and is perhaps the fundamental assumption underlying medicinal chemistry. Dissimilarity, the complement of similarity, also plays a major role in a growing number of applications of molecular diversity in combinatorial chemistry, high-throughput screening, and related fields. How molecular information is represented, called the representation problem, is important to the type of molecular similarity analysis (MSA) that can be carried out in any given situation. In this work, four types of mathematical structure are used to represent molecular information: sets, graphs, vectors, and functions. Molecular similarity is a pairwise relationship that induces structure into sets of molecules, giving rise to the concept of chemical space. Although all three concepts - molecular similarity, molecular representation, and chemical space - are treated in this chapter, the emphasis is on molecular similarity measures. Similarity measures, also called similarity coefficients or indices, are functions that map pairs of compatible molecular representations that are of the same mathematical form into real numbers usually, but not always, lying on the unit interval. This chapter presents a somewhat pedagogical discussion of many types of molecular similarity measures, their strengths and limitations, and their relationship to one another. An expanded account of the material on chemical spaces presented in the first edition of this book is also provided. It includes a discussion of the topography of activity landscapes and the role that activity cliffs in these landscapes play in structure-activity studies.

  5. On universal common ancestry, sequence similarity, and phylogenetic structure: the sins of P-values and the virtues of Bayesian evidence

    Theobald Douglas L

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The universal common ancestry (UCA of all known life is a fundamental component of modern evolutionary theory, supported by a wide range of qualitative molecular evidence. Nevertheless, recently both the status and nature of UCA has been questioned. In earlier work I presented a formal, quantitative test of UCA in which model selection criteria overwhelmingly choose common ancestry over independent ancestry, based on a dataset of universally conserved proteins. These model-based tests are founded in likelihoodist and Bayesian probability theory, in opposition to classical frequentist null hypothesis tests such as Karlin-Altschul E-values for sequence similarity. In a recent comment, Koonin and Wolf (K&W claim that the model preference for UCA is "a trivial consequence of significant sequence similarity". They support this claim with a computational simulation, derived from universally conserved proteins, which produces similar sequences lacking phylogenetic structure. The model selection tests prefer common ancestry for this artificial data set. Results For the real universal protein sequences, hierarchical phylogenetic structure (induced by genealogical history is the overriding reason for why the tests choose UCA; sequence similarity is a relatively minor factor. First, for cases of conflicting phylogenetic structure, the tests choose independent ancestry even with highly similar sequences. Second, certain models, like star trees and K&W's profile model (corresponding to their simulation, readily explain sequence similarity yet lack phylogenetic structure. However, these are extremely poor models for the real proteins, even worse than independent ancestry models, though they explain K&W's artificial data well. Finally, K&W's simulation is an implementation of a well-known phylogenetic model, and it produces sequences that mimic homologous proteins. Therefore the model selection tests work appropriately with the artificial

  6. Schizosaccharomyces pombe Rad22A and Rad22B have similar biochemical properties and form multimeric structures

    Vries, Femke A.T. de [Department of Toxicogenetics, Leiden University Medical Center, P.O. Box 9600, 2300 RC Leiden (Netherlands); Zonneveld, Jose B.M. [Department of Toxicogenetics, Leiden University Medical Center, P.O. Box 9600, 2300 RC Leiden (Netherlands); Groot, Anton J. de [Department of Toxicogenetics, Leiden University Medical Center, P.O. Box 9600, 2300 RC Leiden (Netherlands); Koning, Roman I. [Department of Molecular Cell Biology, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden (Netherlands); Zeeland, Albert A. van [Department of Toxicogenetics, Leiden University Medical Center, P.O. Box 9600, 2300 RC Leiden (Netherlands); Pastink, Albert [Department of Toxicogenetics, Leiden University Medical Center, P.O. Box 9600, 2300 RC Leiden (Netherlands)]. E-mail: A.Pastink@lumc.nl

    2007-02-03

    The Saccharomyces cerevisiae Rad52 protein has a crucial role in the repair of DNA double-strand breaks by homologous recombination. In vitro, Rad52 displays DNA binding and strand annealing activities and promotes Rad51-mediated strand exchange. Schizosaccharomyces pombe has two Rad52 homologues, Rad22A and Rad22B. Whereas rad22A deficient strains exhibit severe defects in repair and recombination, rad22B mutants have a much less severe phenotype. To better understand the role of Rad22A and Rad22B in double-strand break repair, both proteins were purified to near homogeneity. Using gel retardation and filter binding assays, binding of Rad22A and Rad22B to short single-stranded DNAs was demonstrated. Binding of Rad22A to double-stranded oligonucleotides or linearized plasmid molecules containing blunt ends or short single-stranded overhangs could not be detected. Rad22B also does not bind efficiently to short duplex oligonucleotides but binds readily to DNA fragments containing 3'-overhangs. Rad22A as well as Rad22B efficiently promote annealing of complementary single-stranded DNAs. In the presence of Rad22A annealing of complementary DNAs is almost 90%. Whereas in reactions containing Rad22B the maximum level of annealing is 60%, most likely due to inhibition of the reaction by duplex DNA. Gel-filtration experiments and electron microscopic analyses indicate self-association of Rad22A and Rad22B and the formation of multimeric structures as has been observed for Rad52 in yeast and man.

  7. Integrated analysis of multiple data sources reveals modular structure of biological networks

    Lu Hongchao; Shi Baochen; Wu Gaowei; Zhang Yong; Zhu Xiaopeng; Zhang Zhihua; Liu Changning; Zhao, Yi; Wu Tao; Wang Jie; Chen Runsheng

    2006-01-01

    It has been a challenging task to integrate high-throughput data into investigations of the systematic and dynamic organization of biological networks. Here, we presented a simple hierarchical clustering algorithm that goes a long way to achieve this aim. Our method effectively reveals the modular structure of the yeast protein-protein interaction network and distinguishes protein complexes from functional modules by integrating high-throughput protein-protein interaction data with the added subcellular localization and expression profile data. Furthermore, we take advantage of the detected modules to provide a reliably functional context for the uncharacterized components within modules. On the other hand, the integration of various protein-protein association information makes our method robust to false-positives, especially for derived protein complexes. More importantly, this simple method can be extended naturally to other types of data fusion and provides a framework for the study of more comprehensive properties of the biological network and other forms of complex networks

  8. Integration of community structure data reveals observable effects below sediment guideline thresholds in a large estuary

    Tremblay, Louis A.

    2017-04-07

    The sustainable management of estuarine and coastal ecosystems requires robust frameworks due to the presence of multiple physical and chemical stressors. In this study, we assessed whether ecological health decline, based on community structure composition changes along a pollution gradient, occurred at levels below guideline threshold values for copper, zinc and lead. Canonical analysis of principal coordinates (CAP) was used to characterise benthic communities along a metal contamination gradient. The analysis revealed changes in benthic community distribution at levels below the individual guideline values for the three metals. These results suggest that field-based measures of ecological health analysed with multivariate tools can provide additional information to single metal guideline threshold values to monitor large systems exposed to multiple stressors.

  9. Upper crustal structure of Madeira Island revealed from ambient noise tomography

    Matos, Catarina; Silveira, Graça; Matias, Luís; Caldeira, Rita; Ribeiro, M. Luísa; Dias, Nuno A.; Krüger, Frank; Bento dos Santos, Telmo

    2015-06-01

    We present the first image of the Madeira upper crustal structure, using ambient seismic noise tomography. 16 months of ambient noise, recorded in a dense network of 26 seismometers deployed across Madeira, allowed reconstructing Rayleigh wave Green's functions between receivers. Dispersion analysis was performed in the short period band from 1.0 to 4.0 s. Group velocity measurements were regionalized to obtain 2D tomographic images, with a lateral resolution of 2.0 km in central Madeira. Afterwards, the dispersion curves, extracted from each cell of the 2D group velocity maps, were inverted as a function of depth to obtain a 3D shear wave velocity model of the upper crust, from the surface to a depth of 2.0 km. The obtained 3D velocity model reveals features throughout the island that correlates well with surface geology and island evolution.

  10. High-speed atomic force microscopy reveals structural dynamics of α -synuclein monomers and dimers

    Zhang, Yuliang; Hashemi, Mohtadin; Lv, Zhengjian; Williams, Benfeard; Popov, Konstantin I.; Dokholyan, Nikolay V.; Lyubchenko, Yuri L.

    2018-03-01

    α-Synuclein (α-syn) is the major component of the intraneuronal inclusions called Lewy bodies, which are the pathological hallmark of Parkinson's disease. α-Syn is capable of self-assembly into many different species, such as soluble oligomers and fibrils. Even though attempts to resolve the structures of the protein have been made, detailed understanding about the structures and their relationship with the different aggregation steps is lacking, which is of interest to provide insights into the pathogenic mechanism of Parkinson's disease. Here we report the structural flexibility of α-syn monomers and dimers in an aqueous solution environment as probed by single-molecule time-lapse high-speed AFM. In addition, we present the molecular basis for the structural transitions using discrete molecular dynamics (DMD) simulations. α-Syn monomers assume a globular conformation, which is capable of forming tail-like protrusions over dozens of seconds. Importantly, a globular monomer can adopt fully extended conformations. Dimers, on the other hand, are less dynamic and show a dumbbell conformation that experiences morphological changes over time. DMD simulations revealed that the α-syn monomer consists of several tightly packed small helices. The tail-like protrusions are also helical with a small β-sheet, acting as a "hinge". Monomers within dimers have a large interfacial interaction area and are stabilized by interactions in the non-amyloid central (NAC) regions. Furthermore, the dimer NAC-region of each α-syn monomer forms a β-rich segment. Moreover, NAC-regions are located in the hydrophobic core of the dimer.

  11. Structural motif screening reveals a novel, conserved carbohydrate-binding surface in the pathogenesis-related protein PR-5d

    Moffatt Barbara A

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Aromatic amino acids play a critical role in protein-glycan interactions. Clusters of surface aromatic residues and their features may therefore be useful in distinguishing glycan-binding sites as well as predicting novel glycan-binding proteins. In this work, a structural bioinformatics approach was used to screen the Protein Data Bank (PDB for coplanar aromatic motifs similar to those found in known glycan-binding proteins. Results The proteins identified in the screen were significantly associated with carbohydrate-related functions according to gene ontology (GO enrichment analysis, and predicted motifs were found frequently within novel folds and glycan-binding sites not included in the training set. In addition to numerous binding sites predicted in structural genomics proteins of unknown function, one novel prediction was a surface motif (W34/W36/W192 in the tobacco pathogenesis-related protein, PR-5d. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that the surface motif is exclusive to a subfamily of PR-5 proteins from the Solanaceae family of plants, and is absent completely in more distant homologs. To confirm PR-5d's insoluble-polysaccharide binding activity, a cellulose-pulldown assay of tobacco proteins was performed and PR-5d was identified in the cellulose-binding fraction by mass spectrometry. Conclusions Based on the combined results, we propose that the putative binding site in PR-5d may be an evolutionary adaptation of Solanaceae plants including potato, tomato, and tobacco, towards defense against cellulose-containing pathogens such as species of the deadly oomycete genus, Phytophthora. More generally, the results demonstrate that coplanar aromatic clusters on protein surfaces are a structural signature of glycan-binding proteins, and can be used to computationally predict novel glycan-binding proteins from 3 D structure.

  12. Structural motif screening reveals a novel, conserved carbohydrate-binding surface in the pathogenesis-related protein PR-5d.

    Doxey, Andrew C; Cheng, Zhenyu; Moffatt, Barbara A; McConkey, Brendan J

    2010-08-03

    Aromatic amino acids play a critical role in protein-glycan interactions. Clusters of surface aromatic residues and their features may therefore be useful in distinguishing glycan-binding sites as well as predicting novel glycan-binding proteins. In this work, a structural bioinformatics approach was used to screen the Protein Data Bank (PDB) for coplanar aromatic motifs similar to those found in known glycan-binding proteins. The proteins identified in the screen were significantly associated with carbohydrate-related functions according to gene ontology (GO) enrichment analysis, and predicted motifs were found frequently within novel folds and glycan-binding sites not included in the training set. In addition to numerous binding sites predicted in structural genomics proteins of unknown function, one novel prediction was a surface motif (W34/W36/W192) in the tobacco pathogenesis-related protein, PR-5d. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that the surface motif is exclusive to a subfamily of PR-5 proteins from the Solanaceae family of plants, and is absent completely in more distant homologs. To confirm PR-5d's insoluble-polysaccharide binding activity, a cellulose-pulldown assay of tobacco proteins was performed and PR-5d was identified in the cellulose-binding fraction by mass spectrometry. Based on the combined results, we propose that the putative binding site in PR-5d may be an evolutionary adaptation of Solanaceae plants including potato, tomato, and tobacco, towards defense against cellulose-containing pathogens such as species of the deadly oomycete genus, Phytophthora. More generally, the results demonstrate that coplanar aromatic clusters on protein surfaces are a structural signature of glycan-binding proteins, and can be used to computationally predict novel glycan-binding proteins from 3 D structure.

  13. High-resolution deep sequencing reveals biodiversity, population structure, and persistence of HIV-1 quasispecies within host ecosystems

    Yin Li

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Deep sequencing provides the basis for analysis of biodiversity of taxonomically similar organisms in an environment. While extensively applied to microbiome studies, population genetics studies of viruses are limited. To define the scope of HIV-1 population biodiversity within infected individuals, a suite of phylogenetic and population genetic algorithms was applied to HIV-1 envelope hypervariable domain 3 (Env V3 within peripheral blood mononuclear cells from a group of perinatally HIV-1 subtype B infected, therapy-naïve children. Results Biodiversity of HIV-1 Env V3 quasispecies ranged from about 70 to 270 unique sequence clusters across individuals. Viral population structure was organized into a limited number of clusters that included the dominant variants combined with multiple clusters of low frequency variants. Next generation viral quasispecies evolved from low frequency variants at earlier time points through multiple non-synonymous changes in lineages within the evolutionary landscape. Minor V3 variants detected as long as four years after infection co-localized in phylogenetic reconstructions with early transmitting viruses or with subsequent plasma virus circulating two years later. Conclusions Deep sequencing defines HIV-1 population complexity and structure, reveals the ebb and flow of dominant and rare viral variants in the host ecosystem, and identifies an evolutionary record of low-frequency cell-associated viral V3 variants that persist for years. Bioinformatics pipeline developed for HIV-1 can be applied for biodiversity studies of virome populations in human, animal, or plant ecosystems.

  14. Revealing the Linkage Network Dynamic Structures of Chinese Maritime Ports through Automatic Information System Data

    Hongchu Yu

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Marine economic cooperation has emerged as a major theme in this era of globalization; hence, maritime network connectivity and dynamics have attracted more and more attention. Port construction and maritime route improvements increase maritime trade and thus facilitate economic viability and resource sustainability. This paper reveals the regional dimension of inter-port linkage dynamic structure of Chinese maritime ports from a complex multilayer perspective that is meaningful for strategic forecasting and regional long-term economic development planning. In this research, Automatic Information System (AIS-derived traffic flows were used to construct a maritime network and subnetworks based on the geographical locations of ports. The linkage intensity between subnetworks, the linkage tightness within subnetworks, the spatial isolation between high-intensity backbones and tight skeleton networks, and a linkage concentration index for each port were calculated. The ports, in turn, were analyzed based on these network attributes. This study analyzed the external competitiveness and internal cohesion of each subnetwork. The results revealed problems in port management and planning, such as unclear divisions in port operations. More critically, weak complementary relationships between the backbone and skeleton networks among the ports reduce connectivity and must be strengthened. This research contributes to the body of work supporting strategic decision-making for future development.

  15. Genome-wide population structure and admixture analysis reveals weak differentiation among Ugandan goat breeds.

    Onzima, R B; Upadhyay, M R; Mukiibi, R; Kanis, E; Groenen, M A M; Crooijmans, R P M A

    2018-02-01

    Uganda has a large population of goats, predominantly from indigenous breeds reared in diverse production systems, whose existence is threatened by crossbreeding with exotic Boer goats. Knowledge about the genetic characteristics and relationships among these Ugandan goat breeds and the potential admixture with Boer goats is still limited. Using a medium-density single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) panel, we assessed the genetic diversity, population structure and admixture in six goat breeds in Uganda: Boer, Karamojong, Kigezi, Mubende, Small East African and Sebei. All the animals had genotypes for about 46 105 SNPs after quality control. We found high proportions of polymorphic SNPs ranging from 0.885 (Kigezi) to 0.928 (Sebei). The overall mean observed (H O ) and expected (H E ) heterozygosity across breeds was 0.355 ± 0.147 and 0.384 ± 0.143 respectively. Principal components, genetic distances and admixture analyses revealed weak population sub-structuring among the breeds. Principal components separated Kigezi and weakly Small East African from other indigenous goats. Sebei and Karamojong were tightly entangled together, whereas Mubende occupied a more central position with high admixture from all other local breeds. The Boer breed showed a unique cluster from the Ugandan indigenous goat breeds. The results reflect common ancestry but also some level of geographical differentiation. admixture and f 4 statistics revealed gene flow from Boer and varying levels of genetic admixture among the breeds. Generally, moderate to high levels of genetic variability were observed. Our findings provide useful insights into maintaining genetic diversity and designing appropriate breeding programs to exploit within-breed diversity and heterozygote advantage in crossbreeding schemes. © 2018 The Authors. Animal Genetics published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Stichting International Foundation for Animal Genetics.

  16. Crystal structure of APOBEC3A bound to single-stranded DNA reveals structural basis for cytidine deamination and specificity.

    Kouno, Takahide; Silvas, Tania V; Hilbert, Brendan J; Shandilya, Shivender M D; Bohn, Markus F; Kelch, Brian A; Royer, William E; Somasundaran, Mohan; Kurt Yilmaz, Nese; Matsuo, Hiroshi; Schiffer, Celia A

    2017-04-28

    Nucleic acid editing enzymes are essential components of the immune system that lethally mutate viral pathogens and somatically mutate immunoglobulins, and contribute to the diversification and lethality of cancers. Among these enzymes are the seven human APOBEC3 deoxycytidine deaminases, each with unique target sequence specificity and subcellular localization. While the enzymology and biological consequences have been extensively studied, the mechanism by which APOBEC3s recognize and edit DNA remains elusive. Here we present the crystal structure of a complex of a cytidine deaminase with ssDNA bound in the active site at 2.2 Å. This structure not only visualizes the active site poised for catalysis of APOBEC3A, but pinpoints the residues that confer specificity towards CC/TC motifs. The APOBEC3A-ssDNA complex defines the 5'-3' directionality and subtle conformational changes that clench the ssDNA within the binding groove, revealing the architecture and mechanism of ssDNA recognition that is likely conserved among all polynucleotide deaminases, thereby opening the door for the design of mechanistic-based therapeutics.

  17. Factor analysis of regional brain activation in bipolar and healthy individuals reveals a consistent modular structure.

    Fleck, David E; Welge, Jeffrey A; Eliassen, James C; Adler, Caleb M; DelBello, Melissa P; Strakowski, Stephen M

    2018-07-01

    The neurophysiological substrates of cognition and emotion, as seen with fMRI, are generally explained using modular structures. The present study was designed to probe the modular structure of cognitive-emotional processing in bipolar and healthy individuals using factor analysis and compare the results with current conceptions of the neurophysiology of bipolar disorder. Exploratory factor analysis was used to assess patterns of covariation among brain regions-of-interest activated during the Continuous Performance Task with Emotional and Neutral Distractors in healthy and bipolar individuals without a priori constraints on the number or composition of latent factors. Results indicated a common cognitive-emotional network consisting of prefrontal, medial temporal, limbic, parietal, anterior cingulate and posterior cingulate modules. However, reduced brain activation to emotional stimuli in the frontal, medial temporal and limbic modules was apparent in the bipolar relative to the healthy group, potentially accounting for emotional dysregulation in bipolar disorder. This study is limited by a relatively small sample size recruited at a single site. The results have yet to be validated on a larger independent sample. Although the modular structure of cognitive-emotional processing is similar in bipolar and healthy individuals, activation in response to emotional/neutral cues varies. These findings are not only consistent with recent conceptions of mood regulation in bipolar disorder, but also suggest that regional activation can be considered within tighter modular structures without compromising data interpretation. This demonstration may serve as a template for data reduction in future region-of-interest analyses to increase statistical power. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. The Crystal Structure of Streptococcus pyogenes Uridine Phosphorylase Reveals a Distinct Subfamily of Nucleoside Phosphorylases

    Tran, Timothy H.; Christoffersen, S.; Allan, Paula W.; Parker, William B.; Piskur, Jure; Serra, I.; Terreni, M.; Ealick, Steven E. (Cornell); (Pavia); (Lund); (Southern Research)

    2011-09-20

    Uridine phosphorylase (UP), a key enzyme in the pyrimidine salvage pathway, catalyzes the reversible phosphorolysis of uridine or 2'-deoxyuridine to uracil and ribose 1-phosphate or 2'-deoxyribose 1-phosphate. This enzyme belongs to the nucleoside phosphorylase I superfamily whose members show diverse specificity for nucleoside substrates. Phylogenetic analysis shows Streptococcus pyogenes uridine phosphorylase (SpUP) is found in a distinct branch of the pyrimidine subfamily of nucleoside phosphorylases. To further characterize SpUP, we determined the crystal structure in complex with the products, ribose 1-phosphate and uracil, at 1.8 {angstrom} resolution. Like Escherichia coli UP (EcUP), the biological unit of SpUP is a hexamer with an ?/? monomeric fold. A novel feature of the active site is the presence of His169, which structurally aligns with Arg168 of the EcUP structure. A second active site residue, Lys162, is not present in previously determined UP structures and interacts with O2 of uracil. Biochemical studies of wild-type SpUP showed that its substrate specificity is similar to that of EcUP, while EcUP is {approx}7-fold more efficient than SpUP. Biochemical studies of SpUP mutants showed that mutations of His169 reduced activity, while mutation of Lys162 abolished all activity, suggesting that the negative charge in the transition state resides mostly on uracil O2. This is in contrast to EcUP for which transition state stabilization occurs mostly at O4.

  19. Molecular dynamics simulations revealed structural differences among WRKY domain-DNA interaction in barley (Hordeum vulgare).

    Pandey, Bharati; Grover, Abhinav; Sharma, Pradeep

    2018-02-12

    The WRKY transcription factors are a class of DNA-binding proteins involved in diverse plant processes play critical roles in response to abiotic and biotic stresses. Genome-wide divergence analysis of WRKY gene family in Hordeum vulgare provided a framework for molecular evolution and functional roles. So far, the crystal structure of WRKY from barley has not been resolved; moreover, knowledge of the three-dimensional structure of WRKY domain is pre-requisites for exploring the protein-DNA recognition mechanisms. Homology modelling based approach was used to generate structures for WRKY DNA binding domain (DBD) and its variants using AtWRKY1 as a template. Finally, the stability and conformational changes of the generated model in unbound and bound form was examined through atomistic molecular dynamics (MD) simulations for 100 ns time period. In this study, we investigated the comparative binding pattern of WRKY domain and its variants with W-box cis-regulatory element using molecular docking and dynamics (MD) simulations assays. The atomic insight into WRKY domain exhibited significant variation in the intermolecular hydrogen bonding pattern, leading to the structural anomalies in the variant type and differences in the DNA-binding specificities. Based on the MD analysis, residual contribution and interaction contour, wild-type WRKY (HvWRKY46) were found to interact with DNA through highly conserved heptapeptide in the pre- and post-MD simulated complexes, whereas heptapeptide interaction with DNA was missing in variants (I and II) in post-MD complexes. Consequently, through principal component analysis, wild-type WRKY was also found to be more stable by obscuring a reduced conformational space than the variant I (HvWRKY34). Lastly, high binding free energy for wild-type and variant II allowed us to conclude that wild-type WRKY-DNA complex was more stable relative to variants I. The results of our study revealed complete dynamic and structural information

  20. Revealing the structure and dust content of debris disks on solar systems scales with GPI

    Duchene, Gaspard; Fitzgerald, Michael P.; Kalas, Paul; Graham, James R.; Arriaga, Pauline; Bruzzone, Sebastian; Chen, Christine; Dawson, Rebekah Ilene; Dong, Ruobing; Draper, Zachary; Esposito, Thomas; Follette, Katherine; Hung, Li-Wei; Lawler, Samantha; Metchev, Stanimir; Millar-Blanchaer, Max; Murray-Clay, Ruth; Perrin, Marshall D.; Rameau, Julien; Wang, Jason; Wolff, Schuyler; Macintosh, Bruce; GPIES Team

    2016-01-01

    High contrast scattered light images offer the best prospect to assess the detailed geometry and structure of dusty debris disks. In turn, such images can yield profound insight on the architecture of the underlying planetary system as dust grains respond to the gravitational pull of planetary bodies. A new generation of extreme adaptive optics systems now enables an unprecedented exploration of circumstellar disks on solar system scales. Here we review the new science derived from over a dozen debris disks imaged with the Gemini Planet Imager (GPI) as part of the GPI Exoplanet Survey (GPIES). In addition to its exquisite imaging capability, GPI's polarimetric mode provides invaluable insight on the dust content of each disk, in most cases for the very first time. These early results typically reveal narrow belts of material with evacuated regions roughly 50-100 AU in radius, subtle asymmetries in structure and high degree of linear polarization. We will provide an overview of the disk observations made during the GPIES campaign to date and will discuss in more detail some of the most remarkable systems.This work is supported by grants NSF AST-0909188, -1411868, -1413718; NASA NNX-15AD95G, -14AJ80G, -11AD21G; and the NExSS research network.

  1. Rich club analysis in the Alzheimer's disease connectome reveals a relatively undisturbed structural core network.

    Daianu, Madelaine; Jahanshad, Neda; Nir, Talia M; Jack, Clifford R; Weiner, Michael W; Bernstein, Matt A; Thompson, Paul M

    2015-08-01

    Diffusion imaging can assess the white matter connections within the brain, revealing how neural pathways break down in Alzheimer's disease (AD). We analyzed 3-Tesla whole-brain diffusion-weighted images from 202 participants scanned by the Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative-50 healthy controls, 110 with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and 42 AD patients. From whole-brain tractography, we reconstructed structural brain connectivity networks to map connections between cortical regions. We tested whether AD disrupts the "rich club" - a network property where high-degree network nodes are more interconnected than expected by chance. We calculated the rich club properties at a range of degree thresholds, as well as other network topology measures including global degree, clustering coefficient, path length, and efficiency. Network disruptions predominated in the low-degree regions of the connectome in patients, relative to controls. The other metrics also showed alterations, suggesting a distinctive pattern of disruption in AD, less pronounced in MCI, targeting global brain connectivity, and focusing on more remotely connected nodes rather than the central core of the network. AD involves severely reduced structural connectivity; our step-wise rich club coefficients analyze points to disruptions predominantly in the peripheral network components; other modalities of data are needed to know if this indicates impaired communication among non rich club regions. The highly connected core was relatively preserved, offering new evidence on the neural basis of progressive risk for cognitive decline. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  2. Genetic diversity and structure of Brazilian ginger germplasm (Zingiber officinale) revealed by AFLP markers.

    Blanco, Eleonora Zambrano; Bajay, Miklos Maximiliano; Siqueira, Marcos Vinícius Bohrer Monteiro; Zucchi, Maria Imaculada; Pinheiro, José Baldin

    2016-12-01

    Ginger is a vegetable with medicinal and culinary properties widely cultivated in the Southern and Southeastern Brazil. The knowledge of ginger species' genetic variability is essential to direct correctly future studies of conservation and genetic improvement, but in Brazil, little is known about this species' genetic variability. In this study, we analyzed the genetic diversity and structure of 55 Brazilian accessions and 6 Colombian accessions of ginger, using AFLP (Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphism) molecular markers. The molecular characterization was based on 13 primers combinations, which generated an average of 113.5 polymorphic loci. The genetic diversity estimates of Nei (Hj), Shannon-Weiner index (I) and an effective number of alleles (n e ) were greater in the Colombian accessions in relation to the Brazilian accessions. The analysis of molecular variance showed that most of the genetic variation occurred between the two countries while in the Brazilian populations there is no genetic structure and probably each region harbors 100 % of genetic variation found in the samples. The bayesian model-based clustering and the dendrogram using the dissimilarity's coefficient of Jaccard were congruent with each other and showed that the Brazilian accessions are highly similar between themselves, regardless of the geographic region of origin. We suggested that the exploration of the interspecific variability and the introduction of new varieties of Z.officinale are viable alternatives for generating diversity in breeding programs in Brazil. The introduction of new genetic materials will certainly contribute to a higher genetic basis of such crop.

  3. Crystal structure of equine serum albumin in complex with cetirizine reveals a novel drug binding site.

    Handing, Katarzyna B; Shabalin, Ivan G; Szlachta, Karol; Majorek, Karolina A; Minor, Wladek

    2016-03-01

    Serum albumin (SA) is the main transporter of drugs in mammalian blood plasma. Here, we report the first crystal structure of equine serum albumin (ESA) in complex with antihistamine drug cetirizine at a resolution of 2.1Å. Cetirizine is bound in two sites--a novel drug binding site (CBS1) and the fatty acid binding site 6 (CBS2). Both sites differ from those that have been proposed in multiple reports based on equilibrium dialysis and fluorescence studies for mammalian albumins as cetirizine binding sites. We show that the residues forming the binding pockets in ESA are highly conserved in human serum albumin (HSA), and suggest that binding of cetirizine to HSA will be similar. In support of that hypothesis, we show that the dissociation constants for cetirizine binding to CBS2 in ESA and HSA are identical using tryptophan fluorescence quenching. Presence of lysine and arginine residues that have been previously reported to undergo nonenzymatic glycosylation in CBS1 and CBS2 suggests that cetirizine transport in patients with diabetes could be altered. A review of all available SA structures from the PDB shows that in addition to the novel drug binding site we present here (CBS1), there are two pockets on SA capable of binding drugs that do not overlap with fatty acid binding sites and have not been discussed in published reviews. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. The shallow structure of Solfatara Volcano, Italy, revealed by dense, wide-aperture seismic profiling.

    Bruno, Pier Paolo G; Maraio, Stefano; Festa, Gaetano

    2017-12-12

    Two active-source, high-resolution seismic profiles were acquired in the Solfatara tuff cone in May and November 2014, with dense, wide-aperture arrays. Common Receiver Surface processing was crucial in improving signal-to-noise ratio and reflector continuity. These surveys provide, for the first time, high-resolution seismic images of the Solfatara crater, depicting a ~400 m deep asymmetrical crater filled by volcanoclastic sediments and rocks and carved within an overall non-reflective pre-eruptive basement showing features consistent with the emplacement of shallow intrusive bodies. Seismic reflection data were interpreted using the trace complex attributes and clearly display several steep and segmented collapse faults, generally having normal kinematics and dipping toward the crater centre. Fault/fracture planes are imaged as sudden amplitude drops that generate narrow low-similarity and high-dip attributes. Uprising fluids degassed by a magmatic source are the most probable cause of the small-scale amplitude reduction. Seismic data also support the interpretation of the shallow structure of the Solfatara crater as a maar. Our results provides a solid framework to constrain the near-surface geological interpretation of such a complex area, which improves our understanding of the temporal changes of the structure in relation with other geophysical and geochemical measurements.

  5. Structural and functional properties of hemoglobins from unicellular organisms as revealed by resonance Raman spectroscopy.

    Egawa, Tsuyoshi; Yeh, Syun-Ru

    2005-01-01

    Hemoglobins have been discovered in organisms from virtually all kingdoms. Their presence in unicellular organisms suggests that the gene for hemoglobin is very ancient and that the hemoglobins must have functions other than oxygen transport, in view of the fact that O2 delivery is a diffusion-controlled process in these organisms. Based on sequence alignment, three groups of hemoglobins have been characterized in unicellular organisms. The group-one hemoglobins, termed truncated hemoglobins, consist of proteins with 110-140 amino acid residues and a novel two-over-two alpha-helical sandwich motif. The group-two hemoglobins, termed flavohemoglobins, consist of a hemoglobin domain, with a classical three-over-three alpha-helical sandwich motif, and a flavin-containing reductase domain that is covalently attached to it. The group-three hemoglobins consist of myoglobin-like proteins that have high sequence homology and structural similarity to the hemoglobin domain of flavohemoglobins. In this review, recent resonance Raman studies of each group of these proteins are presented. Their implications are discussed in the context of the structural and functional properties of these novel hemoglobins.

  6. Structural, Bioinformatic, and In Vivo Analyses of Two Treponema pallidum Lipoproteins Reveal a Unique TRAP Transporter

    Deka, Ranjit K.; Brautigam, Chad A.; Goldberg, Martin; Schuck, Peter; Tomchick, Diana R.; Norgard, Michael V. (NIH); (UTSMC)

    2012-05-25

    Treponema pallidum, the bacterial agent of syphilis, is predicted to encode one tripartite ATP-independent periplasmic transporter (TRAP-T). TRAP-Ts typically employ a periplasmic substrate-binding protein (SBP) to deliver the cognate ligand to the transmembrane symporter. Herein, we demonstrate that the genes encoding the putative TRAP-T components from T. pallidum, tp0957 (the SBP), and tp0958 (the symporter), are in an operon with an uncharacterized third gene, tp0956. We determined the crystal structure of recombinant Tp0956; the protein is trimeric and perforated by a pore. Part of Tp0956 forms an assembly similar to those of 'tetratricopeptide repeat' (TPR) motifs. The crystal structure of recombinant Tp0957 was also determined; like the SBPs of other TRAP-Ts, there are two lobes separated by a cleft. In these other SBPs, the cleft binds a negatively charged ligand. However, the cleft of Tp0957 has a strikingly hydrophobic chemical composition, indicating that its ligand may be substantially different and likely hydrophobic. Analytical ultracentrifugation of the recombinant versions of Tp0956 and Tp0957 established that these proteins associate avidly. This unprecedented interaction was confirmed for the native molecules using in vivo cross-linking experiments. Finally, bioinformatic analyses suggested that this transporter exemplifies a new subfamily of TPATs (TPR-protein-associated TRAP-Ts) that require the action of a TPR-containing accessory protein for the periplasmic transport of a potentially hydrophobic ligand(s).

  7. Similarity or difference?

    Villadsen, Anders Ryom

    2013-01-01

    While the organizational structures and strategies of public organizations have attracted substantial research attention among public management scholars, little research has explored how these organizational core dimensions are interconnected and influenced by pressures for similarity....... In this paper I address this topic by exploring the relation between expenditure strategy isomorphism and structure isomorphism in Danish municipalities. Different literatures suggest that organizations exist in concurrent pressures for being similar to and different from other organizations in their field......-shaped relation exists between expenditure strategy isomorphism and structure isomorphism in a longitudinal quantitative study of Danish municipalities....

  8. Glycan structure of Gc Protein-derived Macrophage Activating Factor as revealed by mass spectrometry.

    Borges, Chad R; Rehder, Douglas S

    2016-09-15

    Disagreement exists regarding the O-glycan structure attached to human vitamin D binding protein (DBP). Previously reported evidence indicated that the O-glycan of the Gc1S allele product is the linear core 1 NeuNAc-Gal-GalNAc-Thr trisaccharide. Here, glycan structural evidence is provided from glycan linkage analysis and over 30 serial glycosidase-digestion experiments which were followed by analysis of the intact protein by electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS). Results demonstrate that the O-glycan from the Gc1F protein is the same linear trisaccharide found on the Gc1S protein and that the hexose residue is galactose. In addition, the putative anti-cancer derivative of DBP known as Gc Protein-derived Macrophage Activating Factor (GcMAF, which is formed by the combined action of β-galactosidase and neuraminidase upon DBP) was analyzed intact by ESI-MS, revealing that the activating E. coli β-galactosidase cleaves nothing from the protein-leaving the glycan structure of active GcMAF as a Gal-GalNAc-Thr disaccharide, regardless of the order in which β-galactosidase and neuraminidase are applied. Moreover, glycosidase digestion results show that α-N-Acetylgalactosamindase (nagalase) lacks endoglycosidic function and only cleaves the DBP O-glycan once it has been trimmed down to a GalNAc-Thr monosaccharide-precluding the possibility of this enzyme removing the O-glycan trisaccharide from cancer-patient DBP in vivo. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Structural Characterization of Maize SIRK1 Kinase Domain Reveals an Unusual Architecture of the Activation Segment

    Bruno Aquino

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Kinases are primary regulators of plant metabolism and excellent targets for plant breeding. However, most kinases, including the abundant receptor-like kinases (RLK, have no assigned role. SIRK1 is a leucine-rich repeat receptor-like kinase (LRR-RLK, the largest family of RLK. In Arabidopsis thaliana, SIRK1 (AtSIRK1 is phosphorylated after sucrose is resupplied to sucrose-starved seedlings and it modulates the sugar response by phosphorylating several substrates. In maize, the ZmSIRK1 expression is altered in response to drought stress. In neither Arabidopsis nor in maize has the function of SIRK1 been completely elucidated. As a first step toward the biochemical characterization of ZmSIRK1, we obtained its recombinant kinase domain, demonstrated that it binds AMP-PNP, a non-hydrolysable ATP-analog, and solved the structure of ZmSIRK1- AMP-PNP co-crystal. The ZmSIRK1 crystal structure revealed a unique conformation for the activation segment. In an attempt to find inhibitors for ZmSIRK1, we screened a focused small molecule library and identified six compounds that stabilized ZmSIRK1 against thermal melt. ITC analysis confirmed that three of these compounds bound to ZmSIRK1 with low micromolar affinity. Solving the 3D structure of ZmSIRK1-AMP-PNP co-crystal provided information on the molecular mechanism of ZmSIRK1 activity. Furthermore, the identification of small molecules that bind this kinase can serve as initial backbone for development of new potent and selective ZmSIRK1 antagonists.

  10. Revealing Students' Cognitive Structure about Physical and Chemical Change: Use of a Word Association Test

    Yildirir, Hasene Esra; Demirkol, Hatice

    2018-01-01

    The current study aimed at examining the utility of a word association test in revealing students' cognitive structure in a specific chemistry topic through a word association test. The participants were 153 6th graders in a western Turkish city. The results revealed that the word association test serves a useful purpose in exploring the students'…

  11. Northern Bobwhite (Colinus virginianus Mitochondrial Population Genomics Reveals Structure, Divergence, and Evidence for Heteroplasmy.

    Yvette A Halley

    Full Text Available Herein, we evaluated the concordance of population inferences and conclusions resulting from the analysis of short mitochondrial fragments (i.e., partial or complete D-Loop nucleotide sequences versus complete mitogenome sequences for 53 bobwhites representing six ecoregions across TX and OK (USA. Median joining (MJ haplotype networks demonstrated that analyses performed using small mitochondrial fragments were insufficient for estimating the true (i.e., complete mitogenome haplotype structure, corresponding levels of divergence, and maternal population history of our samples. Notably, discordant demographic inferences were observed when mismatch distributions of partial (i.e., partial D-Loop versus complete mitogenome sequences were compared, with the reduction in mitochondrial genomic information content observed to encourage spurious inferences in our samples. A probabilistic approach to variant prediction for the complete bobwhite mitogenomes revealed 344 segregating sites corresponding to 347 total mutations, including 49 putative nonsynonymous single nucleotide variants (SNVs distributed across 12 protein coding genes. Evidence of gross heteroplasmy was observed for 13 bobwhites, with 10 of the 13 heteroplasmies involving one moderate to high frequency SNV. Haplotype network and phylogenetic analyses for the complete bobwhite mitogenome sequences revealed two divergent maternal lineages (dXY = 0.00731; FST = 0.849; P < 0.05, thereby supporting the potential for two putative subspecies. However, the diverged lineage (n = 103 variants almost exclusively involved bobwhites geographically classified as Colinus virginianus texanus, which is discordant with the expectations of previous geographic subspecies designations. Tests of adaptive evolution for functional divergence (MKT, frequency distribution tests (D, FS and phylogenetic analyses (RAxML provide no evidence for positive selection or hybridization with the sympatric scaled quail

  12. Comparative genome analyses reveal distinct structure in the saltwater crocodile MHC.

    Weerachai Jaratlerdsiri

    Full Text Available The major histocompatibility complex (MHC is a dynamic genome region with an essential role in the adaptive immunity of vertebrates, especially antigen presentation. The MHC is generally divided into subregions (classes I, II and III containing genes of similar function across species, but with different gene number and organisation. Crocodylia (crocodilians are widely distributed and represent an evolutionary distinct group among higher vertebrates, but the genomic organisation of MHC within this lineage has been largely unexplored. Here, we studied the MHC region of the saltwater crocodile (Crocodylus porosus and compared it with that of other taxa. We characterised genomic clusters encompassing MHC class I and class II genes in the saltwater crocodile based on sequencing of bacterial artificial chromosomes. Six gene clusters spanning ∼452 kb were identified to contain nine MHC class I genes, six MHC class II genes, three TAP genes, and a TRIM gene. These MHC class I and class II genes were in separate scaffold regions and were greater in length (2-6 times longer than their counterparts in well-studied fowl B loci, suggesting that the compaction of avian MHC occurred after the crocodilian-avian split. Comparative analyses between the saltwater crocodile MHC and that from the alligator and gharial showed large syntenic areas (>80% identity with similar gene order. Comparisons with other vertebrates showed that the saltwater crocodile had MHC class I genes located along with TAP, consistent with birds studied. Linkage between MHC class I and TRIM39 observed in the saltwater crocodile resembled MHC in eutherians compared, but absent in avian MHC, suggesting that the saltwater crocodile MHC appears to have gene organisation intermediate between these two lineages. These observations suggest that the structure of the saltwater crocodile MHC, and other crocodilians, can help determine the MHC that was present in the ancestors of archosaurs.

  13. Interplay of protein and DNA structure revealed in simulations of the lac operon.

    Luke Czapla

    Full Text Available The E. coli Lac repressor is the classic textbook example of a protein that attaches to widely spaced sites along a genome and forces the intervening DNA into a loop. The short loops implicated in the regulation of the lac operon suggest the involvement of factors other than DNA and repressor in gene control. The molecular simulations presented here examine two likely structural contributions to the in-vivo looping of bacterial DNA: the distortions of the double helix introduced upon association of the highly abundant, nonspecific nucleoid protein HU and the large-scale deformations of the repressor detected in low-resolution experiments. The computations take account of the three-dimensional arrangements of nucleotides and amino acids found in crystal structures of DNA with the two proteins, the natural rest state and deformational properties of protein-free DNA, and the constraints on looping imposed by the conformation of the repressor and the orientation of bound DNA. The predicted looping propensities capture the complex, chain-length-dependent variation in repression efficacy extracted from gene expression studies and in vitro experiments and reveal unexpected chain-length-dependent variations in the uptake of HU, the deformation of repressor, and the folding of DNA. Both the opening of repressor and the presence of HU, at levels approximating those found in vivo, enhance the probability of loop formation. HU affects the global organization of the repressor and the opening of repressor influences the levels of HU binding to DNA. The length of the loop determines whether the DNA adopts antiparallel or parallel orientations on the repressor, whether the repressor is opened or closed, and how many HU molecules bind to the loop. The collective behavior of proteins and DNA is greater than the sum of the parts and hints of ways in which multiple proteins may coordinate the packaging and processing of genetic information.

  14. Biochemistry and structural studies of kynurenine 3-monooxygenase reveal allosteric inhibition by Ro 61-8048.

    Gao, Jingjing; Yao, Licheng; Xia, Tingting; Liao, Xuebin; Zhu, Deyu; Xiang, Ye

    2018-04-01

    The human kynurenine 3-monooxygenase (hKMO) is a potential therapeutic target for neurodegenerative and neurologic disorders. Inhibition of KMO by Ro 61-8048, a potent, selective, and the most widely used inhibitor of KMO, was shown effective in various models of neurodegenerative or neurologic disorders. However, the molecular basis of hKMO inhibition by Ro 61-8048 is not clearly understood. Here, we report biochemistry studies on hKMO and crystal structures of an hKMO homolog, pfKMO from Pseudomonas fluorescens, in complex with the substrate l-kynurenine and Ro 61-8048. We found that the C-terminal ∼110 aa are essential for the enzymatic activity of hKMO and the homologous C-terminal region of pfKMO folds into a distinct, all-α-helical domain, which associates with the N-terminal catalytic domain to form a unique tunnel in proximity to the substrate-binding pocket. The tunnel binds the Ro 61-8048 molecule, which fills most of the tunnel, and Ro 61-8048 is hydrogen bonded with several completely conserved residues, including an essential catalytic residue. Modification of Ro 61-8048 and biochemical studies of the modified Ro 61-8048 derivatives suggested that Ro 61-8048 inhibits the enzyme in an allosteric manner by affecting the conformation of the essential catalytic residue and by blocking entry of the substrate or product release. The unique binding sites distinguish Ro 61-8048 as a noncompetitive and highly selective inhibitor from other competitive inhibitors, which should facilitate further optimization of Ro 61-8048 and the development of new inhibitory drugs to hKMO.-Gao, J., Yao, L., Xia, T., Liao, X., Zhu, D., Xiang, Y. Biochemistry and structural studies of kynurenine 3-monooxygenase reveal allosteric inhibition by Ro 61-8048.

  15. Interplay of protein and DNA structure revealed in simulations of the lac operon.

    Czapla, Luke; Grosner, Michael A; Swigon, David; Olson, Wilma K

    2013-01-01

    The E. coli Lac repressor is the classic textbook example of a protein that attaches to widely spaced sites along a genome and forces the intervening DNA into a loop. The short loops implicated in the regulation of the lac operon suggest the involvement of factors other than DNA and repressor in gene control. The molecular simulations presented here examine two likely structural contributions to the in-vivo looping of bacterial DNA: the distortions of the double helix introduced upon association of the highly abundant, nonspecific nucleoid protein HU and the large-scale deformations of the repressor detected in low-resolution experiments. The computations take account of the three-dimensional arrangements of nucleotides and amino acids found in crystal structures of DNA with the two proteins, the natural rest state and deformational properties of protein-free DNA, and the constraints on looping imposed by the conformation of the repressor and the orientation of bound DNA. The predicted looping propensities capture the complex, chain-length-dependent variation in repression efficacy extracted from gene expression studies and in vitro experiments and reveal unexpected chain-length-dependent variations in the uptake of HU, the deformation of repressor, and the folding of DNA. Both the opening of repressor and the presence of HU, at levels approximating those found in vivo, enhance the probability of loop formation. HU affects the global organization of the repressor and the opening of repressor influences the levels of HU binding to DNA. The length of the loop determines whether the DNA adopts antiparallel or parallel orientations on the repressor, whether the repressor is opened or closed, and how many HU molecules bind to the loop. The collective behavior of proteins and DNA is greater than the sum of the parts and hints of ways in which multiple proteins may coordinate the packaging and processing of genetic information.

  16. Combined structural and functional imaging reveals cortical deactivations in grapheme-colour synaesthesia

    Erik eO'Hanlon

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Synaesthesia is a heritable condition in which particular stimuli generate specific and consistent sensory percepts or associations in another modality or processing stream. Functional neuroimaging studies have identified potential correlates of these experiences, including, in some but not all cases, the hyperactivation of visuotemporal areas and of parietal areas thought to be involved in perceptual binding. Structural studies have identified a similarly variable spectrum of differences between synaesthetes and controls. However, it remains unclear the extent to which these neural correlates reflect the synaesthetic experience itself or additional phenotypes associated with the condition. Here, we acquired both structural and functional neuroimaging data comparing thirteen grapheme-colour synaesthetes with eleven non-synaesthetes. Using voxel-based morphometry and diffusion tensor imaging, we identify a number of clusters of increased volume of grey matter, of white matter or of increased fractional anisotropy in synaesthetes versus controls. To assess the possible involvement of these areas in the synaesthetic experience, we used nine areas of increased grey matter volume as regions of interest in an fMRI experiment that characterised the contrast in response to stimuli which induced synaesthesia (i.e. letters versus those which did not (non-meaningful symbols. Two of these areas, in left lateral occipital cortex and in postcentral gyrus, showed sensitivity to this contrast in synaesthetes but not controls. Unexpectedly, in both regions, the letter stimuli produced a strong negative BOLD signal in synaesthetes. An additional whole-brain fMRI analysis identified fourteen areas, three of which were driven mainly by a negative BOLD response to letters in synaesthetes. Our findings suggest that cortical deactivations may be involved in the conscious experience of internally generated synaesthetic percepts

  17. Extensive geographical and social structure in the paternal lineages of Saudi Arabia revealed by analysis of 27 Y-STRs.

    Khubrani, Yahya M; Wetton, Jon H; Jobling, Mark A

    2018-03-01

    Saudi Arabia's indigenous population is organized into patrilineal descent groups, but to date, little has been done to characterize its population structure, in particular with respect to the male-specific region of the Y chromosome. We have used the 27-STR Yfiler ® Plus kit to generate haplotypes in 597 unrelated Saudi males, classified into five geographical regions (North, South, Central, East and West). Overall, Yfiler ® Plus provides a good discrimination capacity of 95.3%, but this is greatly reduced (74.7%) when considering the reduced Yfiler ® set of 17 Y-STRs, justifying the use of the expanded set of markers in this population. Comparison of the five geographical divisions reveals striking differences, with low diversity and similar haplotype spectra in the Central and Northern regions, and high diversity and similar haplotype spectra in the East and West. These patterns likely reflect the geographical isolation of the desert heartland of the peninsula, and the proximity to the sea of the Eastern and Western areas, and consequent historical immigration. We predicted haplogroups from Y-STR haplotypes, testing the performance of prediction by using a large independent set of Saudi Arabian Y-STR + Y-SNP data. Prediction indicated predominance (71%) of haplogroup J1, which was significantly more common in Central, Northern and Southern groups than in East and West, and formed a star-like expansion cluster in a median-joining network with an estimated age of ∼2800 years. Most of our 597 participants were sampled within Saudi Arabia itself, but ∼16% were sampled in the UK. Despite matching these two groups by home sub-region, we observed significant differences in haplotype and predicted haplogroup constitutions overall, and for most sub-regions individually. This suggests social structure influencing the probability of leaving Saudi Arabia, correlated with different Y-chromosome compositions. The UK-recruited sample is an inappropriate proxy for

  18. Ribosome•RelA structures reveal the mechanism of stringent response activation

    Loveland, Anna B; Bah, Eugene; Madireddy, Rohini; Zhang, Ying; Brilot, Axel F; Grigorieff, Nikolaus; Korostelev, Andrei A

    2016-01-01

    Stringent response is a conserved bacterial stress response underlying virulence and antibiotic resistance. RelA/SpoT-homolog proteins synthesize transcriptional modulators (p)ppGpp, allowing bacteria to adapt to stress. RelA is activated during amino-acid starvation, when cognate deacyl-tRNA binds to the ribosomal A (aminoacyl-tRNA) site. We report four cryo-EM structures of E. coli RelA bound to the 70S ribosome, in the absence and presence of deacyl-tRNA accommodating in the 30S A site. The boomerang-shaped RelA with a wingspan of more than 100 Å wraps around the A/R (30S A-site/RelA-bound) tRNA. The CCA end of the A/R tRNA pins the central TGS domain against the 30S subunit, presenting the (p)ppGpp-synthetase domain near the 30S spur. The ribosome and A/R tRNA are captured in three conformations, revealing hitherto elusive states of tRNA engagement with the ribosomal decoding center. Decoding-center rearrangements are coupled with the step-wise 30S-subunit 'closure', providing insights into the dynamics of high-fidelity tRNA decoding. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.17029.001 PMID:27434674

  19. Multilocus genotypic data reveal high genetic diversity and low population genetic structure of Iranian indigenous sheep

    Vahidi, S.M.F.; Faruque, M.O.; Falahati Anbaran, M.; Afraz, F.; Mousavi, S.M.; Boettcher, P.; Joost, S.; Han, J.L.; Colli, L.; Periasamy, K.; Negrini, R.; Ajmone-Marsan, P.

    2016-01-01

    Full text: Iranian livestock diversity is still largely unexplored, in spite of the interest in the populations historically reared in this country located near the Fertile Crescent, a major livestock domestication centre. In this investigation, the genetic diversity and differentiation of 10 Iranian indigenous fat-tailed sheep breeds were investigated using 18 microsatellite markers. Iranian breeds were found to host a high level of diversity. This conclusion is substantiated by the large number of alleles observed across loci (average 13.83, range 7–22) and by the high within-breed expected heterozygosity (average 0.75, range 0.72–0.76). Iranian sheep have a low level of genetic differentiation, as indicated by the analysis of molecular variance, which allocated a very small proportion (1.67%) of total variation to the between-population component, and by the small fixation index (FST = 0.02). Both Bayesian clustering and principal coordinates analysis revealed the absence of a detectable genetic structure. Also, no isolation by distance was observed through comparison of genetic and geographical distances. In spite of high within-breed variation, signatures of inbreeding were detected by the FIS indices, which were positive in all and statistically significant in three breeds. Possible factors explaining the patterns observed, such as considerable gene flow and inbreeding probably due to anthropogenic activities in the light of population management and conservation programmes are discussed. (author)

  20. Revealing the Structural Complexity of Component Interactions of Topic-Specific PCK when Planning to Teach

    Mavhunga, Elizabeth

    2018-04-01

    Teaching pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) at a topic-specific level requires clarity on the content-specific nature of the components employed, as well as the specific features that bring about the desirable depth in teacher explanations. Such understanding is often hazy; yet, it influences the nature of teacher tasks and learning opportunities afforded to pre-service teachers in a teaching program. The purpose of this study was twofold: firstly, to illuminate the emerging complexity when content-specific components of PCK interact when planning to teach a chemistry topic; and secondly, to identify the kinds of teacher tasks that promote the emergence of such complexity. Data collected were content representations (CoRes) in chemical equilibrium accompanied by expanded lesson outlines from 15 pre-service teachers in their final year of study towards a first degree in teaching (B Ed). The analysis involved extraction of episodes that exhibited component interaction by using a qualitative in-depth analysis method. The results revealed the structure in which the components of PCK in a topic interact among each other to be linear, interwoven, or a combination of the two. The interwoven interactions contained multiple components that connected explanations on different aspects of a concept, all working in a complementary manner. The most sophisticated component interactions emerged from teacher tasks on descriptions of a lesson sequence and a summary of a lesson. Recommendations in this study highlight core practices for making pedagogical transformation of topic content knowledge more accessible.

  1. Changes in chromatin structure during the aging of cell cultures as revealed by differential scanning calorimetry

    Almagor, M.; Cole, R.D.

    1989-01-01

    Nuclei from cultured human cells were examined by differential scanning calorimetry. Their melting profiles revealed four structural transitions at 60, 76, 88, and 105 degrees C (transitions I-IV, respectively). In immortalized (i.e., tumor) cell cultures and in normal cell cultures of low passage number, melting profiles were dominated by the 105 degrees C transition (transition IV), but in vitro aging of normal and Werner syndrome cells was associated with a marked decrease in transition IV followed by an increase in transition III at the expense of transition IV. At intermediate times in the aging process, much DNA melted at a temperature range (95-102 degrees C) intermediate between transitions III and IV, and this is consistent with the notion that aging of cell cultures is accompanied by an increase in single-strand character of the DNA. Calorimetric changes were observed in the melting profile of nuclei from UV-irradiated tumor cells that resembled the age-induced intermediate melting of chromatin. It is suggested that aging is accompanied by an increase in single-stranded character of the DNA in chromatin, which lowers its melting temperature, followed by strand breaks in the DNA that destroy its supercoiling potential

  2. Revealing the velocity structure of the filamentary nebula in NGC 1275 in its entirety

    Gendron-Marsolais, M.; Hlavacek-Larrondo, J.; Martin, T. B.; Drissen, L.; McDonald, M.; Fabian, A. C.; Edge, A. C.; Hamer, S. L.; McNamara, B.; Morrison, G.

    2018-05-01

    We have produced for the first time a detailed velocity map of the giant filamentary nebula surrounding NGC 1275, the Perseus cluster's brightest galaxy, and revealed a previously unknown rich velocity structure across the entire nebula. These new observations were obtained with the optical imaging Fourier transform spectrometer SITELLE at CFHT. With its wide field of view (˜11'×11'), SITELLE is the only integral field unit spectroscopy instrument able to cover the 80 kpc×55 kpc (3.8'×2.6') large nebula in NGC 1275. Our analysis of these observations shows a smooth radial gradient of the [N II]λ6583/Hα line ratio, suggesting a change in the ionization mechanism and source across the nebula. The velocity map shows no visible general trend or rotation, indicating that filaments are not falling uniformly onto the galaxy, nor being uniformly pulled out from it. Comparison between the physical properties of the filaments and Hitomi measurements of the X-ray gas dynamics in Perseus are also explored.

  3. Multilayer Stochastic Block Models Reveal the Multilayer Structure of Complex Networks

    Toni Vallès-Català

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available In complex systems, the network of interactions we observe between systems components is the aggregate of the interactions that occur through different mechanisms or layers. Recent studies reveal that the existence of multiple interaction layers can have a dramatic impact in the dynamical processes occurring on these systems. However, these studies assume that the interactions between systems components in each one of the layers are known, while typically for real-world systems we do not have that information. Here, we address the issue of uncovering the different interaction layers from aggregate data by introducing multilayer stochastic block models (SBMs, a generalization of single-layer SBMs that considers different mechanisms of layer aggregation. First, we find the complete probabilistic solution to the problem of finding the optimal multilayer SBM for a given aggregate-observed network. Because this solution is computationally intractable, we propose an approximation that enables us to verify that multilayer SBMs are more predictive of network structure in real-world complex systems.

  4. Combined techniques for characterising pasta structure reveals how the gluten network slows enzymic digestion rate.

    Zou, Wei; Sissons, Mike; Gidley, Michael J; Gilbert, Robert G; Warren, Frederick J

    2015-12-01

    The aim of the present study is to characterise the influence of gluten structure on the kinetics of starch hydrolysis in pasta. Spaghetti and powdered pasta were prepared from three different cultivars of durum semolina, and starch was also purified from each cultivar. Digestion kinetic parameters were obtained through logarithm-of-slope analysis, allowing identification of sequential digestion steps. Purified starch and semolina were digested following a single first-order rate constant, while pasta and powdered pasta followed two sequential first-order rate constants. Rate coefficients were altered by pepsin hydrolysis. Confocal microscopy revealed that, following cooking, starch granules were completely swollen for starch, semolina and pasta powder samples. In pasta, they were completely swollen in the external regions, partially swollen in the intermediate region and almost intact in the pasta strand centre. Gluten entrapment accounts for sequential kinetic steps in starch digestion of pasta; the compact microstructure of pasta also reduces digestion rates. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Structural Studies Reveal the Functional Modularity of the Scc2-Scc4 Cohesin Loader

    William C.H. Chao

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The remarkable accuracy of eukaryotic cell division is partly maintained by the cohesin complex acting as a molecular glue to prevent premature sister chromatid separation. The loading of cohesin onto chromosomes is catalyzed by the Scc2-Scc4 loader complex. Here, we report the crystal structure of Scc4 bound to the N terminus of Scc2 and show that Scc4 is a tetratricopeptide repeat (TPR superhelix. The Scc2 N terminus adopts an extended conformation and is entrapped by the core of the Scc4 superhelix. Electron microscopy (EM analysis reveals that the Scc2-Scc4 loader complex comprises three domains: a head, body, and hook. Deletion studies unambiguously assign the Scc2N-Scc4 as the globular head domain, whereas in vitro cohesin loading assays show that the central body and the hook domains are sufficient to catalyze cohesin loading onto circular DNA, but not chromatinized DNA in vivo, suggesting a possible role for Scc4 as a chromatin adaptor.

  6. Revealing the Interface Structure and Bonding Mechanism of Coupling Agent Treated WPC

    Jiuping Rao

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the interfacial optimisation of wood plastic composites (WPC based on recycled wood flour and polyethylene by employing maleated and silane coupling agents. The effect of the incorporation of the coupling agents on the variation of chemical structure of the composites were investigated by Attenuated total reflectance-Fourier Transform Infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR and Solid state 13C Nuclear Magnetic Resonance spectroscopy (NMR analyses. The results revealed the chemical reactions that occurred between the coupling agents and raw materials, which thus contributed to the enhancement of compatibility and interfacial adhesion between the constituents of WPC. NMR results also indicated that there existed the transformation of crystalline cellulose to an amorphous state during the coupling agent treatments, reflecting the inferior resonance of crystalline carbohydrates. Fluorescence Microscope (FM and Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM analyses showed the improvements of wood particle dispersion and wettability, compatibility of the constituents, and resin penetration, and impregnation of the composites after the coupling agent treatments. The optimised interface of the composites was attributed to interdiffusion, electrostatic adhesion, chemical reactions, and mechanical interlocking bonding mechanisms.

  7. Structure-guided mutational analysis reveals the functional requirements for product specificity of DOT1 enzymes.

    Dindar, Gülcin; Anger, Andreas M; Mehlhorn, Christine; Hake, Sandra B; Janzen, Christian J

    2014-11-12

    DOT1 enzymes are conserved methyltransferases that catalyse the methylation of lysine 79 on histone H3 (H3K79). Most eukaryotes contain one DOT1 enzyme, whereas African trypanosomes have two homologues, DOT1A and DOT1B, with different enzymatic activities. DOT1A mediates mono- and dimethylation of H3K76, the homologue of H3K79 in other organisms, whereas DOT1B additionally catalyses H3K76 trimethylation. However, it is unclear how these different enzymatic activities are achieved. Here we employ a trypanosomal nucleosome reconstitution system and structure-guided homology modelling to identify critical residues within and outside the catalytic centre that modulate product specificity. Exchange of these residues transfers the product specificity from one enzyme to the other, and reveals the existence of distinct regulatory domains adjacent to the catalytic centre. Our study provides the first evidence that a few crucial residues in DOT1 enzymes are sufficient to catalyse methyl-state-specific reactions. These results might also have far-reaching consequences for the functional understanding of homologous enzymes in higher eukaryotes.

  8. Structures of the NLRP14 pyrin domain reveal a conformational switch mechanism regulating its molecular interactions

    Eibl, Clarissa; Hessenberger, Manuel; Wenger, Julia; Brandstetter, Hans

    2014-01-01

    Pyrin domains (PYDs) recruit downstream effector molecules in NLR signalling. A specific charge-relay system suggests a the formation of a signalling complex involving a PYD dimer. The cytosolic tripartite NLR receptors serve as important signalling platforms in innate immunity. While the C-terminal domains act as sensor and activation modules, the N-terminal death-like domain, e.g. the CARD or pyrin domain, is thought to recruit downstream effector molecules by homotypic interactions. Such homotypic complexes have been determined for all members of the death-domain superfamily except for pyrin domains. Here, crystal structures of human NLRP14 pyrin-domain variants are reported. The wild-type protein as well as the clinical D86V mutant reveal an unexpected rearrangement of the C-terminal helix α6, resulting in an extended α5/6 stem-helix. This reordering mediates a novel symmetric pyrin-domain dimerization mode. The conformational switching is controlled by a charge-relay system with a drastic impact on protein stability. How the identified charge relay allows classification of NLRP receptors with respect to distinct recruitment mechanisms is discussed

  9. Multiscale image analysis reveals structural heterogeneity of the cell microenvironment in homotypic spheroids.

    Schmitz, Alexander; Fischer, Sabine C; Mattheyer, Christian; Pampaloni, Francesco; Stelzer, Ernst H K

    2017-03-03

    Three-dimensional multicellular aggregates such as spheroids provide reliable in vitro substitutes for tissues. Quantitative characterization of spheroids at the cellular level is fundamental. We present the first pipeline that provides three-dimensional, high-quality images of intact spheroids at cellular resolution and a comprehensive image analysis that completes traditional image segmentation by algorithms from other fields. The pipeline combines light sheet-based fluorescence microscopy of optically cleared spheroids with automated nuclei segmentation (F score: 0.88) and concepts from graph analysis and computational topology. Incorporating cell graphs and alpha shapes provided more than 30 features of individual nuclei, the cellular neighborhood and the spheroid morphology. The application of our pipeline to a set of breast carcinoma spheroids revealed two concentric layers of different cell density for more than 30,000 cells. The thickness of the outer cell layer depends on a spheroid's size and varies between 50% and 75% of its radius. In differently-sized spheroids, we detected patches of different cell densities ranging from 5 × 10 5 to 1 × 10 6  cells/mm 3 . Since cell density affects cell behavior in tissues, structural heterogeneities need to be incorporated into existing models. Our image analysis pipeline provides a multiscale approach to obtain the relevant data for a system-level understanding of tissue architecture.

  10. Metagenomes reveal microbial structures, functional potentials, and biofouling-related genes in a membrane bioreactor.

    Ma, Jinxing; Wang, Zhiwei; Li, Huan; Park, Hee-Deung; Wu, Zhichao

    2016-06-01

    Metagenomic sequencing was used to investigate the microbial structures, functional potentials, and biofouling-related genes in a membrane bioreactor (MBR). The results showed that the microbial community in the MBR was highly diverse. Notably, function analysis of the dominant genera indicated that common genes from different phylotypes were identified for important functional potentials with the observation of variation of abundances of genes in a certain taxon (e.g., Dechloromonas). Despite maintaining similar metabolic functional potentials with a parallel full-scale conventional activated sludge (CAS) system due to treating the identical wastewater, the MBR had more abundant nitrification-related bacteria and coding genes of ammonia monooxygenase, which could well explain its excellent ammonia removal in the low-temperature period. Furthermore, according to quantification of the genes involved in exopolysaccharide and extracellular polymeric substance (EPS) protein metabolism, the MBR did not show a much different potential in producing EPS compared to the CAS system, and bacteria from the membrane biofilm had lower abundances of genes associated with EPS biosynthesis and transport compared to the activated sludge in the MBR.

  11. The crystal structure of Erwinia amylovora AmyR, a member of the YbjN protein family, shows similarity to type III secretion chaperones but suggests different cellular functions.

    Bartho, Joseph D; Bellini, Dom; Wuerges, Jochen; Demitri, Nicola; Toccafondi, Mirco; Schmitt, Armin O; Zhao, Youfu; Walsh, Martin A; Benini, Stefano

    2017-01-01

    AmyR is a stress and virulence associated protein from the plant pathogenic Enterobacteriaceae species Erwinia amylovora, and is a functionally conserved ortholog of YbjN from Escherichia coli. The crystal structure of E. amylovora AmyR reveals a class I type III secretion chaperone-like fold, despite the lack of sequence similarity between these two classes of protein and lacking any evidence of a secretion-associated role. The results indicate that AmyR, and YbjN proteins in general, function through protein-protein interactions without any enzymatic action. The YbjN proteins of Enterobacteriaceae show remarkably low sequence similarity with other members of the YbjN protein family in Eubacteria, yet a high level of structural conservation is observed. Across the YbjN protein family sequence conservation is limited to residues stabilising the protein core and dimerization interface, while interacting regions are only conserved between closely related species. This study presents the first structure of a YbjN protein from Enterobacteriaceae, the most highly divergent and well-studied subgroup of YbjN proteins, and an in-depth sequence and structural analysis of this important but poorly understood protein family.

  12. Multidimensional Riemann problem with self-similar internal structure - part III - a multidimensional analogue of the HLLI Riemann solver for conservative hyperbolic systems

    Balsara, Dinshaw S.; Nkonga, Boniface

    2017-10-01

    Just as the quality of a one-dimensional approximate Riemann solver is improved by the inclusion of internal sub-structure, the quality of a multidimensional Riemann solver is also similarly improved. Such multidimensional Riemann problems arise when multiple states come together at the vertex of a mesh. The interaction of the resulting one-dimensional Riemann problems gives rise to a strongly-interacting state. We wish to endow this strongly-interacting state with physically-motivated sub-structure. The fastest way of endowing such sub-structure consists of making a multidimensional extension of the HLLI Riemann solver for hyperbolic conservation laws. Presenting such a multidimensional analogue of the HLLI Riemann solver with linear sub-structure for use on structured meshes is the goal of this work. The multidimensional MuSIC Riemann solver documented here is universal in the sense that it can be applied to any hyperbolic conservation law. The multidimensional Riemann solver is made to be consistent with constraints that emerge naturally from the Galerkin projection of the self-similar states within the wave model. When the full eigenstructure in both directions is used in the present Riemann solver, it becomes a complete Riemann solver in a multidimensional sense. I.e., all the intermediate waves are represented in the multidimensional wave model. The work also presents, for the very first time, an important analysis of the dissipation characteristics of multidimensional Riemann solvers. The present Riemann solver results in the most efficient implementation of a multidimensional Riemann solver with sub-structure. Because it preserves stationary linearly degenerate waves, it might also help with well-balancing. Implementation-related details are presented in pointwise fashion for the one-dimensional HLLI Riemann solver as well as the multidimensional MuSIC Riemann solver.

  13. Detection of structurally similar adulterants in botanical dietary supplements by thin-layer chromatography and surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy combined with two-dimensional correlation spectroscopy.

    Li, Hao; Zhu, Qing xia; Chwee, Tsz sian; Wu, Lin; Chai, Yi feng; Lu, Feng; Yuan, Yong fang

    2015-07-09

    Thin-layer chromatography (TLC) coupled with surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) has been widely used for the study of various complex systems, especially for the detection of adulterants in botanical dietary supplements (BDS). However, this method is not sufficient to distinguish structurally similar adulterants in BDS since the analogs have highly similar chromatographic and/or spectroscopic behaviors. Taking into account the fact that higher cost and more time will be required for comprehensive chromatographic separation, more efforts with respect to spectroscopy are now focused on analyzing the overlapped SERS peaks. In this paper, the combination of a TLC-SERS method with two-dimensional correlation spectroscopy (2DCOS), with duration of exposure to laser as the perturbation, is applied to solve this problem. Besides the usual advantages of the TLC-SERS method, such as its simplicity, rapidness, and sensitivity, more advantages are presented here, such as enhanced selectivity and good reproducibility, which are obtained by 2DCOS. Two chemicals with similar structures are successfully differentiated from the complex BDS matrices. The study provides a more accurate qualitative screening method for detection of BDS with adulterants, and offers a new universal approach for the analysis of highly overlapped SERS peaks. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. RNA-TVcurve: a Web server for RNA secondary structure comparison based on a multi-scale similarity of its triple vector curve representation.

    Li, Ying; Shi, Xiaohu; Liang, Yanchun; Xie, Juan; Zhang, Yu; Ma, Qin

    2017-01-21

    RNAs have been found to carry diverse functionalities in nature. Inferring the similarity between two given RNAs is a fundamental step to understand and interpret their functional relationship. The majority of functional RNAs show conserved secondary structures, rather than sequence conservation. Those algorithms relying on sequence-based features usually have limitations in their prediction performance. Hence, integrating RNA structure features is very critical for RNA analysis. Existing algorithms mainly fall into two categories: alignment-based and alignment-free. The alignment-free algorithms of RNA comparison usually have lower time complexity than alignment-based algorithms. An alignment-free RNA comparison algorithm was proposed, in which novel numerical representations RNA-TVcurve (triple vector curve representation) of RNA sequence and corresponding secondary structure features are provided. Then a multi-scale similarity score of two given RNAs was designed based on wavelet decomposition of their numerical representation. In support of RNA mutation and phylogenetic analysis, a web server (RNA-TVcurve) was designed based on this alignment-free RNA comparison algorithm. It provides three functional modules: 1) visualization of numerical representation of RNA secondary structure; 2) detection of single-point mutation based on secondary structure; and 3) comparison of pairwise and multiple RNA secondary structures. The inputs of the web server require RNA primary sequences, while corresponding secondary structures are optional. For the primary sequences alone, the web server can compute the secondary structures using free energy minimization algorithm in terms of RNAfold tool from Vienna RNA package. RNA-TVcurve is the first integrated web server, based on an alignment-free method, to deliver a suite of RNA analysis functions, including visualization, mutation analysis and multiple RNAs structure comparison. The comparison results with two popular RNA

  15. A Tri-Oceanic Perspective: DNA Barcoding Reveals Geographic Structure and Cryptic Diversity in Canadian Polychaetes

    Carr, Christina M.; Hardy, Sarah M.; Brown, Tanya M.; Macdonald, Tara A.; Hebert, Paul D. N.

    2011-01-01

    Background Although polychaetes are one of the dominant taxa in marine communities, their distributions and taxonomic diversity are poorly understood. Recent studies have shown that many species thought to have broad distributions are actually a complex of allied species. In Canada, 12% of polychaete species are thought to occur in Atlantic, Arctic, and Pacific Oceans, but the extent of gene flow among their populations has not been tested. Methodology/Principal Findings Sequence variation in a segment of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase I (COI) gene was employed to compare morphological versus molecular diversity estimates, to examine gene flow among populations of widespread species, and to explore connectivity patterns among Canada's three oceans. Analysis of 1876 specimens, representing 333 provisional species, revealed 40 times more sequence divergence between than within species (16.5% versus 0.38%). Genetic data suggest that one quarter of previously recognized species actually include two or more divergent lineages, indicating that richness in this region is currently underestimated. Few species with a tri-oceanic distribution showed genetic cohesion. Instead, large genetic breaks occur between Pacific and Atlantic-Arctic lineages, suggesting their long-term separation. High connectivity among Arctic and Atlantic regions and low connectivity with the Pacific further supports the conclusion that Canadian polychaetes are partitioned into two distinct faunas. Conclusions/Significance Results of this study confirm that COI sequences are an effective tool for species identification in polychaetes, and suggest that DNA barcoding will aid the recognition of species overlooked by the current taxonomic system. The consistent geographic structuring within presumed widespread species suggests that historical range fragmentation during the Pleistocene ultimately increased Canadian polychaete diversity and that the coastal British Columbia fauna played a minor

  16. A tri-oceanic perspective: DNA barcoding reveals geographic structure and cryptic diversity in Canadian polychaetes.

    Christina M Carr

    Full Text Available Although polychaetes are one of the dominant taxa in marine communities, their distributions and taxonomic diversity are poorly understood. Recent studies have shown that many species thought to have broad distributions are actually a complex of allied species. In Canada, 12% of polychaete species are thought to occur in Atlantic, Arctic, and Pacific Oceans, but the extent of gene flow among their populations has not been tested.Sequence variation in a segment of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase I (COI gene was employed to compare morphological versus molecular diversity estimates, to examine gene flow among populations of widespread species, and to explore connectivity patterns among Canada's three oceans. Analysis of 1876 specimens, representing 333 provisional species, revealed 40 times more sequence divergence between than within species (16.5% versus 0.38%. Genetic data suggest that one quarter of previously recognized species actually include two or more divergent lineages, indicating that richness in this region is currently underestimated. Few species with a tri-oceanic distribution showed genetic cohesion. Instead, large genetic breaks occur between Pacific and Atlantic-Arctic lineages, suggesting their long-term separation. High connectivity among Arctic and Atlantic regions and low connectivity with the Pacific further supports the conclusion that Canadian polychaetes are partitioned into two distinct faunas.Results of this study confirm that COI sequences are an effective tool for species identification in polychaetes, and suggest that DNA barcoding will aid the recognition of species overlooked by the current taxonomic system. The consistent geographic structuring within presumed widespread species suggests that historical range fragmentation during the Pleistocene ultimately increased Canadian polychaete diversity and that the coastal British Columbia fauna played a minor role in Arctic recolonization following deglaciation

  17. Diversity and Structure of Diazotrophic Communities in Mangrove Rhizosphere, Revealed by High-Throughput Sequencing.

    Zhang, Yanying; Yang, Qingsong; Ling, Juan; Van Nostrand, Joy D; Shi, Zhou; Zhou, Jizhong; Dong, Junde

    2017-01-01

    Diazotrophic communities make an essential contribution to the productivity through providing new nitrogen. However, knowledge of the roles that both mangrove tree species and geochemical parameters play in shaping mangove rhizosphere diazotrophic communities is still elusive. Here, a comprehensive examination of the diversity and structure of microbial communities in the rhizospheres of three mangrove species, Rhizophora apiculata , Avicennia marina , and Ceriops tagal , was undertaken using high - throughput sequencing of the 16S rRNA and nifH genes. Our results revealed a great diversity of both the total microbial composition and the diazotrophic composition specifically in the mangrove rhizosphere. Deltaproteobacteria and Gammaproteobacteria were both ubiquitous and dominant, comprising an average of 45.87 and 86.66% of total microbial and diazotrophic communities, respectively. Sulfate-reducing bacteria belonging to the Desulfobacteraceae and Desulfovibrionaceae were the dominant diazotrophs. Community statistical analyses suggested that both mangrove tree species and additional environmental variables played important roles in shaping total microbial and potential diazotroph communities in mangrove rhizospheres. In contrast to the total microbial community investigated by analysis of 16S rRNA gene sequences, most of the dominant diazotrophic groups identified by nifH gene sequences were significantly different among mangrove species. The dominant diazotrophs of the family Desulfobacteraceae were positively correlated with total phosphorus, but negatively correlated with the nitrogen to phosphorus ratio. The Pseudomonadaceae were positively correlated with the concentration of available potassium, suggesting that diazotrophs potentially play an important role in biogeochemical cycles, such as those of nitrogen, phosphorus, sulfur, and potassium, in the mangrove ecosystem.

  18. Diversity and Structure of Diazotrophic Communities in Mangrove Rhizosphere, Revealed by High-Throughput Sequencing

    Yanying Zhang

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Diazotrophic communities make an essential contribution to the productivity through providing new nitrogen. However, knowledge of the roles that both mangrove tree species and geochemical parameters play in shaping mangove rhizosphere diazotrophic communities is still elusive. Here, a comprehensive examination of the diversity and structure of microbial communities in the rhizospheres of three mangrove species, Rhizophora apiculata, Avicennia marina, and Ceriops tagal, was undertaken using high-throughput sequencing of the 16S rRNA and nifH genes. Our results revealed a great diversity of both the total microbial composition and the diazotrophic composition specifically in the mangrove rhizosphere. Deltaproteobacteria and Gammaproteobacteria were both ubiquitous and dominant, comprising an average of 45.87 and 86.66% of total microbial and diazotrophic communities, respectively. Sulfate-reducing bacteria belonging to the Desulfobacteraceae and Desulfovibrionaceae were the dominant diazotrophs. Community statistical analyses suggested that both mangrove tree species and additional environmental variables played important roles in shaping total microbial and potential diazotroph communities in mangrove rhizospheres. In contrast to the total microbial community investigated by analysis of 16S rRNA gene sequences, most of the dominant diazotrophic groups identified by nifH gene sequences were significantly different among mangrove species. The dominant diazotrophs of the family Desulfobacteraceae were positively correlated with total phosphorus, but negatively correlated with the nitrogen to phosphorus ratio. The Pseudomonadaceae were positively correlated with the concentration of available potassium, suggesting that diazotrophs potentially play an important role in biogeochemical cycles, such as those of nitrogen, phosphorus, sulfur, and potassium, in the mangrove ecosystem.

  19. Revealing structure and assembly cues for Arabidopsis root-inhabiting bacterial microbiota.

    Bulgarelli, Davide; Rott, Matthias; Schlaeppi, Klaus; Ver Loren van Themaat, Emiel; Ahmadinejad, Nahal; Assenza, Federica; Rauf, Philipp; Huettel, Bruno; Reinhardt, Richard; Schmelzer, Elmon; Peplies, Joerg; Gloeckner, Frank Oliver; Amann, Rudolf; Eickhorst, Thilo; Schulze-Lefert, Paul

    2012-08-02

    The plant root defines the interface between a multicellular eukaryote and soil, one of the richest microbial ecosystems on Earth. Notably, soil bacteria are able to multiply inside roots as benign endophytes and modulate plant growth and development, with implications ranging from enhanced crop productivity to phytoremediation. Endophytic colonization represents an apparent paradox of plant innate immunity because plant cells can detect an array of microbe-associated molecular patterns (also known as MAMPs) to initiate immune responses to terminate microbial multiplication. Several studies attempted to describe the structure of bacterial root endophytes; however, different sampling protocols and low-resolution profiling methods make it difficult to infer general principles. Here we describe methodology to characterize and compare soil- and root-inhabiting bacterial communities, which reveals not only a function for metabolically active plant cells but also for inert cell-wall features in the selection of soil bacteria for host colonization. We show that the roots of Arabidopsis thaliana, grown in different natural soils under controlled environmental conditions, are preferentially colonized by Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes and Actinobacteria, and each bacterial phylum is represented by a dominating class or family. Soil type defines the composition of root-inhabiting bacterial communities and host genotype determines their ribotype profiles to a limited extent. The identification of soil-type-specific members within the root-inhabiting assemblies supports our conclusion that these represent soil-derived root endophytes. Surprisingly, plant cell-wall features of other tested plant species seem to provide a sufficient cue for the assembly of approximately 40% of the Arabidopsis bacterial root-inhabiting microbiota, with a bias for Betaproteobacteria. Thus, this root sub-community may not be Arabidopsis-specific but saprophytic bacteria that would naturally be found

  20. 3D shear wave velocity structure revealed with ambient noise tomography on a DAS array

    Zeng, X.; Thurber, C. H.; Wang, H. F.; Fratta, D.

    2017-12-01

    An 8700-m Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) cable was deployed at Brady's Hot Springs, Nevada in March 2016 in a 1.5 by 0.5 km study area. The layout of the DAS array was designed with a zig-zag geometry to obtain relatively uniform areal and varied angular coverage, providing very dense coverage with a one-meter channel spacing. This array continuously recorded signals of a vibroseis truck, earthquakes, and traffic noise during the 15-day deployment. As shown in a previous study (Zeng et al., 2017), ambient noise tomography can be applied to DAS continuous records to image shear wave velocity structure in the near surface. To avoid effects of the vibroseis truck operation, only continuous data recorded during the nighttime was used to compute noise cross-correlation functions for channel pairs within a given linear segment. The frequency band of whitening was set at 5 to 15 Hz and the length of the cross-correlation time window was set to 60 second. The phase velocities were determined using the multichannel analysis of surface waves (MASW) methodology. The phase velocity dispersion curve was then used to invert for shear wave velocity profiles. A preliminarily velocity model at Brady's Hot Springs (Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, 2015) was used as the starting model and the sensitivity kernels of Rayleigh wave group and phase velocities were computed with this model. As the sensitivity kernel shows, shear wave velocity in the top 200 m can be constrained with Rayleigh wave group and phase velocities in our frequency band. With the picked phase velocity data, the shear wave velocity structure can be obtained via Occam's inversion (Constable et al., 1987; Lai 1998). Shear wave velocity gradually increases with depth and it is generally faster than the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (2015) model. Furthermore, that model has limiting constraints at shallow depth. The strong spatial variation is interpreted to reflect the different sediments and

  1. Native tandem and ion mobility mass spectrometry highlight structural and modular similarities in clustered-regularly-interspaced shot-palindromic-repeats (CRISPR)-associated protein complexes from Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

    van Duijn, Esther; Barbu, Ioana M; Barendregt, Arjan; Jore, Matthijs M; Wiedenheft, Blake; Lundgren, Magnus; Westra, Edze R; Brouns, Stan J J; Doudna, Jennifer A; van der Oost, John; Heck, Albert J R

    2012-11-01

    The CRISPR/Cas (clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats/CRISPR-associated genes) immune system of bacteria and archaea provides acquired resistance against viruses and plasmids, by a strategy analogous to RNA-interference. Key components of the defense system are ribonucleoprotein complexes, the composition of which appears highly variable in different CRISPR/Cas subtypes. Previous studies combined mass spectrometry, electron microscopy, and small angle x-ray scattering to demonstrate that the E. coli Cascade complex (405 kDa) and the P. aeruginosa Csy-complex (350 kDa) are similar in that they share a central spiral-shaped hexameric structure, flanked by associating proteins and one CRISPR RNA. Recently, a cryo-electron microscopy structure of Cascade revealed that the CRISPR RNA molecule resides in a groove of the hexameric backbone. For both complexes we here describe the use of native mass spectrometry in combination with ion mobility mass spectrometry to assign a stable core surrounded by more loosely associated modules. Via computational modeling subcomplex structures were proposed that relate to the experimental IMMS data. Despite the absence of obvious sequence homology between several subunits, detailed analysis of sub-complexes strongly suggests analogy between subunits of the two complexes. Probing the specific association of E. coli Cascade/crRNA to its complementary DNA target reveals a conformational change. All together these findings provide relevant new information about the potential assembly process of the two CRISPR-associated complexes.

  2. Whole-brain analytic measures of network communication reveal increased structure-function correlation in right temporal lobe epilepsy

    Jonathan Wirsich

    2016-01-01

    In rTLE patients, we found a widespread hypercorrelated functional network. Network communication analysis revealed greater unspecific branching of the shortest path (search information in the structural connectome and a higher global correlation between the structural and functional connectivity for the patient group. We also found evidence for a preserved structural rich-club in the patient group. In sum, global augmentation of structure-function correlation might be linked to a smaller functional repertoire in rTLE patients, while sparing the central core of the brain which may represent a pathway that facilitates the spread of seizures.

  3. Structure of the nucleotide-binding domain of a dipeptide ABC transporter reveals a novel iron-sulfur cluster-binding domain.

    Li, Xiaolu; Zhuo, Wei; Yu, Jie; Ge, Jingpeng; Gu, Jinke; Feng, Yue; Yang, Maojun; Wang, Linfang; Wang, Na

    2013-02-01

    Dipeptide permease (Dpp), which belongs to an ABC transport system, imports peptides consisting of two or three L-amino acids from the matrix to the cytoplasm in microbes. Previous studies have indicated that haem competes with dipeptides to bind DppA in vitro and in vivo and that the Dpp system can also translocate haem. Here, the crystal structure of DppD, the nucleotide-binding domain (NBD) of the ABC-type dipeptide/oligopeptide/nickel-transport system from Thermoanaerobacter tengcongensis, bound with ATP, Mg(2+) and a [4Fe-4S] iron-sulfur cluster is reported. The N-terminal domain of DppD shares a similar structural fold with the NBDs of other ABC transporters. Interestingly, the C-terminal domain of DppD contains a [4Fe-4S] cluster. The UV-visible absorbance spectrum of DppD was consistent with the presence of a [4Fe-4S] cluster. A search with DALI revealed that the [4Fe-4S] cluster-binding domain is a novel structural fold. Structural analysis and comparisons with other ABC transporters revealed that this iron-sulfur cluster may act as a mediator in substrate (dipeptide or haem) binding by electron transfer and may regulate the transport process in Dpp ABC transport systems. The crystal structure provides a basis for understanding the properties of ABC transporters and will be helpful in investigating the functions of NBDs in the regulation of ABC transporter activity.

  4. Structure of Rhodococcus equi virulence-associated protein B (VapB) reveals an eight-stranded antiparallel β-barrel consisting of two Greek-key motifs

    Geerds, Christina; Wohlmann, Jens; Haas, Albert; Niemann, Hartmut H.

    2014-01-01

    The structure of VapB, a member of the Vap protein family that is involved in virulence of the bacterial pathogen R. equi, was determined by SAD phasing and reveals an eight-stranded antiparallel β-barrel similar to avidin, suggestive of a binding function. Made up of two Greek-key motifs, the topology of VapB is unusual or even unique. Members of the virulence-associated protein (Vap) family from the pathogen Rhodococcus equi regulate virulence in an unknown manner. They do not share recognizable sequence homology with any protein of known structure. VapB and VapA are normally associated with isolates from pigs and horses, respectively. To contribute to a molecular understanding of Vap function, the crystal structure of a protease-resistant VapB fragment was determined at 1.4 Å resolution. The structure was solved by SAD phasing employing the anomalous signal of one endogenous S atom and two bound Co ions with low occupancy. VapB is an eight-stranded antiparallel β-barrel with a single helix. Structural similarity to avidins suggests a potential binding function. Unlike other eight- or ten-stranded β-barrels found in avidins, bacterial outer membrane proteins, fatty-acid-binding proteins and lysozyme inhibitors, Vaps do not have a next-neighbour arrangement but consist of two Greek-key motifs with strand order 41238567, suggesting an unusual or even unique topology

  5. Structure of Rhodococcus equi virulence-associated protein B (VapB) reveals an eight-stranded antiparallel β-barrel consisting of two Greek-key motifs

    Geerds, Christina [Bielefeld University, Universitaetsstrasse 25, 33615 Bielefeld (Germany); Wohlmann, Jens; Haas, Albert [University of Bonn, Ulrich-Haberland Strasse 61a, 53121 Bonn (Germany); Niemann, Hartmut H., E-mail: hartmut.niemann@uni-bielefeld.de [Bielefeld University, Universitaetsstrasse 25, 33615 Bielefeld (Germany)

    2014-06-18

    The structure of VapB, a member of the Vap protein family that is involved in virulence of the bacterial pathogen R. equi, was determined by SAD phasing and reveals an eight-stranded antiparallel β-barrel similar to avidin, suggestive of a binding function. Made up of two Greek-key motifs, the topology of VapB is unusual or even unique. Members of the virulence-associated protein (Vap) family from the pathogen Rhodococcus equi regulate virulence in an unknown manner. They do not share recognizable sequence homology with any protein of known structure. VapB and VapA are normally associated with isolates from pigs and horses, respectively. To contribute to a molecular understanding of Vap function, the crystal structure of a protease-resistant VapB fragment was determined at 1.4 Å resolution. The structure was solved by SAD phasing employing the anomalous signal of one endogenous S atom and two bound Co ions with low occupancy. VapB is an eight-stranded antiparallel β-barrel with a single helix. Structural similarity to avidins suggests a potential binding function. Unlike other eight- or ten-stranded β-barrels found in avidins, bacterial outer membrane proteins, fatty-acid-binding proteins and lysozyme inhibitors, Vaps do not have a next-neighbour arrangement but consist of two Greek-key motifs with strand order 41238567, suggesting an unusual or even unique topology.

  6. The Impact of Protein Structure and Sequence Similarity on the Accuracy of Machine-Learning Scoring Functions for Binding Affinity Prediction.

    Li, Hongjian; Peng, Jiangjun; Leung, Yee; Leung, Kwong-Sak; Wong, Man-Hon; Lu, Gang; Ballester, Pedro J

    2018-03-14

    It has recently been claimed that the outstanding performance of machine-learning scoring functions (SFs) is exclusively due to the presence of training complexes with highly similar proteins to those in the test set. Here, we revisit this question using 24 similarity-based training sets, a widely used test set, and four SFs. Three of these SFs employ machine learning instead of the classical linear regression approach of the fourth SF (X-Score which has the best test set performance out of 16 classical SFs). We have found that random forest (RF)-based RF-Score-v3 outperforms X-Score even when 68% of the most similar proteins are removed from the training set. In addition, unlike X-Score, RF-Score-v3 is able to keep learning with an increasing training set size, becoming substantially more predictive than X-Score when the full 1105 complexes are used for training. These results show that machine-learning SFs owe a substantial part of their performance to training on complexes with dissimilar proteins to those in the test set, against what has been previously concluded using the same data. Given that a growing amount of structural and interaction data will be available from academic and industrial sources, this performance gap between machine-learning SFs and classical SFs is expected to enlarge in the future.

  7. Internal structure of a barrier beach as revealed by ground penetrating radar (GPR): Chesil beach, UK

    Bennett, Matthew R.; Cassidy, Nigel J.; Pile, Jeremy

    2009-03-01

    Chesil Beach (Dorset) is one of the most famous coastal landforms on the British coast. The gravel beach is over 18 km long and is separated for much of its length from land by a tidal lagoon known as The Fleet. The beach links the Isle of Portland in the east to the mainland in the west. Despite its iconic status there is little available information on its internal geometry and evolutionary history. Here we present a three-fold model for the evolution of Chesil Beach based on a series of nine ground penetrating radar (GPR) traverses located at three sites along its length at Abbotsbury, Langton Herring and at Ferry Bridge. The GPR traverses reveal a remarkably consistent picture of the internal structure of this barrier beach. The first phase of evolution involves the landward transgression of a small sand and gravel beach which closed upon the coast leading to deposition of freshwater peat between 5 and 7 k yr BP. The second evolutionary phase involves the 'bulking-out' of the beach during continued sea level rise, but in the presence of abundant gravel supplied by down-drift erosion of periglacial slope deposits. This episode of growth was associated with a series of washover fans which accumulated on the landward flank of the barrier increasing its breadth and height but without significant landward transgression of the barrier as a whole. The final phase in the evolution of Chesil Beach involves the seaward progradation of the beach crest and upper beach face associated with continued sediment abundance, but during a still-stand or slight fall in relative sea level. This phase may provide further evidence of a slight fall in relative sea level noted elsewhere along the South Coast of Britain and dated to between 1.2 and 2.4 k yr BP. Subsequently the barrier appears to have become largely inactive, except for the reworking of sediment on the beach face during storm events. The case study not only refines the evolutionary picture of Chesil Beach, but

  8. A High-Resolution Crystal Structure of a Psychrohalophilic α-Carbonic Anhydrase from Photobacterium profundum Reveals a Unique Dimer Interface.

    Vijayakumar Somalinga

    Full Text Available Bacterial α-carbonic anhydrases (α-CA are zinc containing metalloenzymes that catalyze the rapid interconversion of CO2 to bicarbonate and a proton. We report the first crystal structure of a pyschrohalophilic α-CA from a deep-sea bacterium, Photobacterium profundum. Size exclusion chromatography of the purified P. profundum α-CA (PprCA reveals that the protein is a heterogeneous mix of monomers and dimers. Furthermore, an "in-gel" carbonic anhydrase activity assay, also known as protonography, revealed two distinct bands corresponding to monomeric and dimeric forms of PprCA that are catalytically active. The crystal structure of PprCA was determined in its native form and reveals a highly conserved "knot-topology" that is characteristic of α-CA's. Similar to other bacterial α-CA's, PprCA also crystallized as a dimer. Furthermore, dimer interface analysis revealed the presence of a chloride ion (Cl- in the interface which is unique to PprCA and has not been observed in any other α-CA's characterized so far. Molecular dynamics simulation and chloride ion occupancy analysis shows 100% occupancy for the Cl- ion in the dimer interface. Zinc coordinating triple histidine residues, substrate binding hydrophobic patch residues, and the hydrophilic proton wire residues are highly conserved in PprCA and are identical to other well-studied α-CA's.

  9. Full-length RNA structure prediction of the HIV-1 genome reveals a conserved core domain

    Sükösd, Zsuzsanna; Andersen, Ebbe Sloth; Seemann, Ernst Stefan

    2015-01-01

    of the HIV-1 genome is highly variable in most regions, with a limited number of stable and conserved RNA secondary structures. Most interesting, a set of long distance interactions form a core organizing structure (COS) that organize the genome into three major structural domains. Despite overlapping...

  10. The nonenzymatic subunit of pseutarin C, a prothrombin activator from eastern brown snake (Pseudonaja textilis) venom, shows structural similarity to mammalian coagulation factor V.

    Rao, Veena S; Swarup, Sanjay; Kini, R Manjunatha

    2003-08-15

    Pseutarin C is a group C prothrombin activator from the venom of the eastern brown snake Pseudonaja textilis. It is a multi-subunit protein complex consisting of catalytic and nonenzymatic subunits similar to coagulation factor Xa and factor Va, respectively. Here we describe the complete sequence of the nonenzymatic subunit. Based on the partial amino acid sequence of the nonenzymatic subunit, degenerate primers were designed. Using a "walking" strategy based on sequentially designed primers, we determined the complete cDNA sequence of the nonenzymatic subunit. The cDNA encodes a protein of 1461 amino acid residues, which includes a 30-residue signal peptide, a mature protein of 1430 amino acid residues, and a stop codon. cDNA blot analysis showed a single transcript of approximately 4.6 kb. The deduced amino acid sequence shows approximately 50% identity to mammalian factor V and by homology has a similar domain structure consisting of domains A1-A2-B-A3-C1-C2. Interestingly, the B domain of pseutarin C is shorter than that of mammalian factor V (FV). Although most of the proteolytic activation sites are conserved, 2 of 3 proteolytic sites cleaved by activated protein C are mutated, and thus activated protein C is not able to inactivate this procoagulant toxin. The predicted posttranslational modifications, including disulfide bonds, N-glycosylation, phosphorylation, and sulfation, in pseutarin C are significantly different compared with bovine factor V. Thus, our data demonstrate that the nonenzymatic subunit of group C prothrombin activators is structurally similar to mammalian FV.

  11. Two crystal structures of dihydrofolate reductase-thymidylate synthase from Cryptosporidium hominis reveal protein–ligand interactions including a structural basis for observed antifolate resistance

    Anderson, Amy C., E-mail: aca@dartmouth.edu [Dartmouth College, Department of Chemistry, Burke Laboratories, Hanover, NH 03755 (United States)

    2005-03-01

    An analysis of the protein–ligand interactions in two crystal structures of DHFR-TS from C. hominis reveals a possible structural basis for observed antifolate resistance in C. hominis DHFR. A comparison with the structure of human DHFR reveals residue substitutions that may be exploited for the design of species-selective inhibitors. Cryptosporidium hominis is a protozoan parasite that causes acute gastrointestinal illness. There are no effective therapies for cryptosporidiosis, highlighting the need for new drug-lead discovery. An analysis of the protein–ligand interactions in two crystal structures of dihydrofolate reductase-thymidylate synthase (DHFR-TS) from C. hominis, determined at 2.8 and 2.87 Å resolution, reveals that the interactions of residues Ile29, Thr58 and Cys113 in the active site of C. hominis DHFR provide a possible structural basis for the observed antifolate resistance. A comparison with the structure of human DHFR reveals active-site differences that may be exploited for the design of species-selective inhibitors.

  12. Single cell Hi-C reveals cell-to-cell variability in chromosome structure

    Schoenfelder, Stefan; Yaffe, Eitan; Dean, Wendy; Laue, Ernest D.; Tanay, Amos; Fraser, Peter

    2013-01-01

    Large-scale chromosome structure and spatial nuclear arrangement have been linked to control of gene expression and DNA replication and repair. Genomic techniques based on chromosome conformation capture assess contacts for millions of loci simultaneously, but do so by averaging chromosome conformations from millions of nuclei. Here we introduce single cell Hi-C, combined with genome-wide statistical analysis and structural modeling of single copy X chromosomes, to show that individual chromosomes maintain domain organisation at the megabase scale, but show variable cell-to-cell chromosome territory structures at larger scales. Despite this structural stochasticity, localisation of active gene domains to boundaries of territories is a hallmark of chromosomal conformation. Single cell Hi-C data bridge current gaps between genomics and microscopy studies of chromosomes, demonstrating how modular organisation underlies dynamic chromosome structure, and how this structure is probabilistically linked with genome activity patterns. PMID:24067610

  13. Complex nuclear-structure phenomena revealed from the nuclide production in fragmentation reactions

    Ricciardi, M.V.; Kelic, A.; Napolitani, P.; Schmidt, K.H.; Yordanov, O.; Ignatyuk, A.V.; Rejmund, F.

    2003-12-01

    Complex structural effects in the nuclide production from the projectile fragmentation of 1 A GeV 238 U nuclei in a titanium target are reported. The structure seems to be insensitive to the excitation energy induced in the reaction. This is in contrast to the prominent structural features found in nuclear fission and in transfer reactions, which gradually disappear with increasing excitation energy. Using the statistical model of nuclear reactions, relations to structural effects in nuclear binding and in the nuclear level density are demonstrated. (orig.)

  14. Molecular structural differences between low methoxy pectins induced by pectin methyl esterase II: effects on texture, release and perception of aroma in gels of similar modulus of elasticity.

    Kim, Yang; Kim, Young-Suk; Yoo, Sang-Ho; Kim, Kwang-Ok

    2014-02-15

    Six low-methoxy pectins with different degrees of methylesterification and amidation, and molecular weights were used to prepare gels with similar moduli of elasticity by varying the concentrations of pectin and calcium phosphate. Five aroma compounds were added to the gels and their sensory textural properties, release and perception of aromas were investigated. Sensory firmness, springiness, adhesiveness, chewiness and cohesiveness differed according to the gel type, even though the moduli of elasticity were not significantly different (ppectin exhibited the lowest release and perception for all the aroma compounds, while pectin-methylesterase-treated pectin gels exhibited relatively higher aroma release and perception. These results showed that the structural properties of pectins and gelling factors that increase the non-polar character of the gel matrices could decrease the release and perception of aromas in pectin gel systems. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. MODIS-Aqua Reveals Evolving Phytoplankton Community Structure During the Arabian Sea Northeast Monsoon

    Werdell, P. Jeremy; Roesler, Collin S.; Goes, Joaquim I.

    2016-01-01

    Applying a bio-optical model designed to identify the mixotrophic dinoflagellate Noctiluca miliaris to MODIS-Aqua revealed (1) patterns in its spatial distribution not previously seen (including its appearance in places not previously sampled), and (2) the surprising disassociation of total chlorophyll biomass with the presence of N. miliaris.

  16. Intraspecific Variation and Phylogenetic Relationships Are Revealed by ITS1 Secondary Structure Analysis and Single-Nucleotide Polymorphism in Ganoderma lucidum

    Pei, Haisheng; Chen, Zhou; Tan, Xiaoyan; Hu, Jing; Yang, Bin; Sun, Junshe

    2017-01-01

    Ganoderma lucidum is a typical polypore fungus used for traditional Chinese medical purposes. The taxonomic delimitation of Ganoderma lucidum is still debated. In this study, we sequenced seven internal transcribed spacer (ITS) sequences of Ganoderma lucidum strains and annotated the ITS1 and ITS2 regions. Phylogenetic analysis of ITS1 differentiated the strains into three geographic groups. Groups 1–3 were originated from Europe, tropical Asia, and eastern Asia, respectively. While ITS2 could only differentiate the strains into two groups in which Group 2 originated from tropical Asia gathered with Groups 1 and 3 originated from Europe and eastern Asia. By determining the secondary structures of the ITS1 sequences, these three groups exhibited similar structures with a conserved central core and differed helices. While compared to Group 2, Groups 1 and 3 of ITS2 sequences shared similar structures with the difference in helix 4. Large-scale evaluation of ITS1 and ITS2 both exhibited that the majority of subgroups in the same group shared the similar structures. Further Weblogo analysis of ITS1 sequences revealed two main variable regions located in helix 2 in which C/T or A/G substitutions frequently occurred and ITS1 exhibited more nucleotide variances compared to ITS2. ITS1 multi-alignment of seven spawn strains and culture tests indicated that a single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) site at position 180 correlated with strain antagonism. The HZ, TK and 203 fusion strains of Ganoderma lucidum had a T at position 180, whereas other strains exhibiting antagonism, including DB, RB, JQ, and YS, had a C. Taken together, compared to ITS2 region, ITS1 region could differentiated Ganoderma lucidum into three geographic originations based on phylogenetic analysis and secondary structure prediction. Besides, a SNP in ITS 1 could delineate Ganoderma lucidum strains at the intraspecific level. These findings will be implemented to improve species quality control in the

  17. Intraspecific Variation and Phylogenetic Relationships Are Revealed by ITS1 Secondary Structure Analysis and Single-Nucleotide Polymorphism in Ganoderma lucidum.

    Xiuqing Zhang

    Full Text Available Ganoderma lucidum is a typical polypore fungus used for traditional Chinese medical purposes. The taxonomic delimitation of Ganoderma lucidum is still debated. In this study, we sequenced seven internal transcribed spacer (ITS sequences of Ganoderma lucidum strains and annotated the ITS1 and ITS2 regions. Phylogenetic analysis of ITS1 differentiated the strains into three geographic groups. Groups 1-3 were originated from Europe, tropical Asia, and eastern Asia, respectively. While ITS2 could only differentiate the strains into two groups in which Group 2 originated from tropical Asia gathered with Groups 1 and 3 originated from Europe and eastern Asia. By determining the secondary structures of the ITS1 sequences, these three groups exhibited similar structures with a conserved central core and differed helices. While compared to Group 2, Groups 1 and 3 of ITS2 sequences shared similar structures with the difference in helix 4. Large-scale evaluation of ITS1 and ITS2 both exhibited that the majority of subgroups in the same group shared the similar structures. Further Weblogo analysis of ITS1 sequences revealed two main variable regions located in helix 2 in which C/T or A/G substitutions frequently occurred and ITS1 exhibited more nucleotide variances compared to ITS2. ITS1 multi-alignment of seven spawn strains and culture tests indicated that a single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP site at position 180 correlated with strain antagonism. The HZ, TK and 203 fusion strains of Ganoderma lucidum had a T at position 180, whereas other strains exhibiting antagonism, including DB, RB, JQ, and YS, had a C. Taken together, compared to ITS2 region, ITS1 region could differentiated Ganoderma lucidum into three geographic originations based on phylogenetic analysis and secondary structure prediction. Besides, a SNP in ITS 1 could delineate Ganoderma lucidum strains at the intraspecific level. These findings will be implemented to improve species quality

  18. Molecular Dynamic Simulation of Space and Earth-Grown Crystal Structures of Thermostable T1 Lipase Geobacillus zalihae Revealed a Better Structure.

    Ishak, Siti Nor Hasmah; Aris, Sayangku Nor Ariati Mohamad; Halim, Khairul Bariyyah Abd; Ali, Mohd Shukuri Mohamad; Leow, Thean Chor; Kamarudin, Nor Hafizah Ahmad; Masomian, Malihe; Rahman, Raja Noor Zaliha Raja Abd

    2017-09-25

    Less sedimentation and convection in a microgravity environment has become a well-suited condition for growing high quality protein crystals. Thermostable T1 lipase derived from bacterium Geobacillus zalihae has been crystallized using the counter diffusion method under space and earth conditions. Preliminary study using YASARA molecular modeling structure program for both structures showed differences in number of hydrogen bond, ionic interaction, and conformation. The space-grown crystal structure contains more hydrogen bonds as compared with the earth-grown crystal structure. A molecular dynamics simulation study was used to provide insight on the fluctuations and conformational changes of both T1 lipase structures. The analysis of root mean square deviation (RMSD), radius of gyration, and root mean square fluctuation (RMSF) showed that space-grown structure is more stable than the earth-grown structure. Space-structure also showed more hydrogen bonds and ion interactions compared to the earth-grown structure. Further analysis also revealed that the space-grown structure has long-lived interactions, hence it is considered as the more stable structure. This study provides the conformational dynamics of T1 lipase crystal structure grown in space and earth condition.

  19. Integration of community structure data reveals observable effects below sediment guideline thresholds in a large estuary

    Tremblay, Louis A.; Clark, Dana; Sinner, Jim; Ellis, Joanne

    2017-01-01

    The sustainable management of estuarine and coastal ecosystems requires robust frameworks due to the presence of multiple physical and chemical stressors. In this study, we assessed whether ecological health decline, based on community structure

  20. Multilayer networks reveal the spatial structure of seed-dispersal interactions across the Great Rift landscapes.

    Timóteo, Sérgio; Correia, Marta; Rodríguez-Echeverría, Susana; Freitas, Helena; Heleno, Ruben

    2018-01-10

    Species interaction networks are traditionally explored as discrete entities with well-defined spatial borders, an oversimplification likely impairing their applicability. Using a multilayer network approach, explicitly accounting for inter-habitat connectivity, we investigate the spatial structure of seed-dispersal networks across the Gorongosa National Park, Mozambique. We show that the overall seed-dispersal network is composed by spatially explicit communities of dispersers spanning across habitats, functionally linking the landscape mosaic. Inter-habitat connectivity determines spatial structure, which cannot be accurately described with standard monolayer approaches either splitting or merging habitats. Multilayer modularity cannot be predicted by null models randomizing either interactions within each habitat or those linking habitats; however, as habitat connectivity increases, random processes become more important for overall structure. The importance of dispersers for the overall network structure is captured by multilayer versatility but not by standard metrics. Highly versatile species disperse many plant species across multiple habitats, being critical to landscape functional cohesion.

  1. Water's Interfacial Hydrogen Bonding Structure Reveals the Effective Strength of Surface-Water Interactions.

    Shin, Sucheol; Willard, Adam P

    2018-06-05

    We combine all-atom molecular dynamics simulations with a mean field model of interfacial hydrogen bonding to analyze the effect of surface-water interactions on the structural and energetic properties of the liquid water interface. We show that the molecular structure of water at a weakly interacting ( i.e., hydrophobic) surface is resistant to change unless the strength of surface-water interactions are above a certain threshold. We find that below this threshold water's interfacial structure is homogeneous and insensitive to the details of the disordered surface, however, above this threshold water's interfacial structure is heterogeneous. Despite this heterogeneity, we demonstrate that the equilibrium distribution of molecular orientations can be used to quantify the energetic component of the surface-water interactions that contribute specifically to modifying the interfacial hydrogen bonding network. We identify this specific energetic component as a new measure of hydrophilicity, which we refer to as the intrinsic hydropathy.

  2. Quantitative image analysis reveals distinct structural transitions during aging in Caenorhabditis elegans tissues.

    Johnston, Josiah; Iser, Wendy B; Chow, David K; Goldberg, Ilya G; Wolkow, Catherine A

    2008-07-30

    Aging is associated with functional and structural declines in many body systems, even in the absence of underlying disease. In particular, skeletal muscles experience severe declines during aging, a phenomenon termed sarcopenia. Despite the high incidence and severity of sarcopenia, little is known about contributing factors and development. Many studies focus on functional aspects of aging-related tissue decline, while structural details remain understudied. Traditional approaches for quantifying structural changes have assessed individual markers at discrete intervals. Such approaches are inadequate for the complex changes associated with aging. An alternative is to consider changes in overall morphology rather than in specific markers. We have used this approach to quantitatively track tissue architecture during adulthood and aging in the C. elegans pharynx, the neuromuscular feeding organ. Using pattern recognition to analyze aged-grouped pharynx images, we identified discrete step-wise transitions between distinct morphologies. The morphology state transitions were maintained in mutants with pharynx neurotransmission defects, although the pace of the transitions was altered. Longitudinal measurements of pharynx function identified a predictive relationship between mid-life pharynx morphology and function at later ages. These studies demonstrate for the first time that adult tissues undergo distinct structural transitions reflecting postdevelopmental events. The processes that underlie these architectural changes may contribute to increased disease risk during aging, and may be targets for factors that alter the aging rate. This work further demonstrates that pattern analysis of an image series offers a novel and generally accessible approach for quantifying morphological changes and identifying structural biomarkers.

  3. ITS2 sequence-structure phylogeny reveals diverse endophytic Pseudocercospora fungi on poplars.

    Yan, Dong-Hui; Gao, Qian; Sun, Xiaoming; Song, Xiaoyu; Li, Hongchang

    2018-04-01

    For matching the new fungal nomenclature to abolish pleomorphic names for a fungus, a genus Pseudocercospora s. str. was suggested to host holomorphic Pseudocercosproa fungi. But the Pseudocercosproa fungi need extra phylogenetic loci to clarify their taxonomy and diversity for their existing and coming species. Internal transcribed spacer 2 (ITS2) secondary structures have been promising in charactering species phylogeny in plants, animals and fungi. In present study, a conserved model of ITS2 secondary structures was confirmed on fungi in Pseudocercospora s. str. genus using RNAshape program. The model has a typical eukaryotic four-helix ITS2 secondary structure. But a single U base occurred in conserved motif of U-U mismatch in Helix 2, and a UG emerged in UGGU motif in Helix 3 to Pseudocercospora fungi. The phylogeny analyses based on the ITS2 sequence-secondary structures with compensatory base change characterizations are able to delimit more species for Pseudocercospora s. str. than phylogenic inferences of traditional multi-loci alignments do. The model was employed to explore the diversity of endophytic Pseudocercospora fungi in poplar trees. The analysis results also showed that endophytic Pseudocercospora fungi were diverse in species and evolved a specific lineage in poplar trees. This work suggested that ITS2 sequence-structures could become as additionally significant loci for species phylogenetic and taxonomic studies on Pseudocerospora fungi, and that Pseudocercospora endophytes could be important roles to Pseudocercospora fungi's evolution and function in ecology.

  4. Revealing the Link between Structural Relaxation and Dynamic Heterogeneity in Glass-Forming Liquids.

    Wang, Lijin; Xu, Ning; Wang, W H; Guan, Pengfei

    2018-03-23

    Despite the use of glasses for thousands of years, the nature of the glass transition is still mysterious. On approaching the glass transition, the growth of dynamic heterogeneity has long been thought to play a key role in explaining the abrupt slowdown of structural relaxation. However, it still remains elusive whether there is an underlying link between structural relaxation and dynamic heterogeneity. Here, we unravel the link by introducing a characteristic time scale hiding behind an identical dynamic heterogeneity for various model glass-forming liquids. We find that the time scale corresponds to the kinetic fragility of liquids. Moreover, it leads to scaling collapse of both the structural relaxation time and dynamic heterogeneity for all liquids studied, together with a characteristic temperature associated with the same dynamic heterogeneity. Our findings imply that studying the glass transition from the viewpoint of dynamic heterogeneity is more informative than expected.

  5. Crystal structures of a GABAA-receptor chimera reveal new endogenous neurosteroid-binding sites.

    Laverty, Duncan; Thomas, Philip; Field, Martin; Andersen, Ole J; Gold, Matthew G; Biggin, Philip C; Gielen, Marc; Smart, Trevor G

    2017-11-01

    γ-Aminobutyric acid receptors (GABA A Rs) are vital for controlling excitability in the brain. This is emphasized by the numerous neuropsychiatric disorders that result from receptor dysfunction. A critical component of most native GABA A Rs is the α subunit. Its transmembrane domain is the target for many modulators, including endogenous brain neurosteroids that impact anxiety, stress and depression, and for therapeutic drugs, such as general anesthetics. Understanding the basis for the modulation of GABA A R function requires high-resolution structures. Here we present the first atomic structures of a GABA A R chimera at 2.8-Å resolution, including those bound with potentiating and inhibitory neurosteroids. These structures define new allosteric binding sites for these modulators that are associated with the α-subunit transmembrane domain. Our findings will enable the exploitation of neurosteroids for therapeutic drug design to regulate GABA A Rs in neurological disorders.

  6. Revealing the Link between Structural Relaxation and Dynamic Heterogeneity in Glass-Forming Liquids

    Wang, Lijin; Xu, Ning; Wang, W. H.; Guan, Pengfei

    2018-03-01

    Despite the use of glasses for thousands of years, the nature of the glass transition is still mysterious. On approaching the glass transition, the growth of dynamic heterogeneity has long been thought to play a key role in explaining the abrupt slowdown of structural relaxation. However, it still remains elusive whether there is an underlying link between structural relaxation and dynamic heterogeneity. Here, we unravel the link by introducing a characteristic time scale hiding behind an identical dynamic heterogeneity for various model glass-forming liquids. We find that the time scale corresponds to the kinetic fragility of liquids. Moreover, it leads to scaling collapse of both the structural relaxation time and dynamic heterogeneity for all liquids studied, together with a characteristic temperature associated with the same dynamic heterogeneity. Our findings imply that studying the glass transition from the viewpoint of dynamic heterogeneity is more informative than expected.

  7. Revised Mimivirus major capsid protein sequence reveals intron-containing gene structure and extra domain

    Suzan-Monti Marie

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Acanthamoebae polyphaga Mimivirus (APM is the largest known dsDNA virus. The viral particle has a nearly icosahedral structure with an internal capsid shell surrounded with a dense layer of fibrils. A Capsid protein sequence, D13L, was deduced from the APM L425 coding gene and was shown to be the most abundant protein found within the viral particle. However this protein remained poorly characterised until now. A revised protein sequence deposited in a database suggested an additional N-terminal stretch of 142 amino acids missing from the original deduced sequence. This result led us to investigate the L425 gene structure and the biochemical properties of the complete APM major Capsid protein. Results This study describes the full length 3430 bp Capsid coding gene and characterises the 593 amino acids long corresponding Capsid protein 1. The recombinant full length protein allowed the production of a specific monoclonal antibody able to detect the Capsid protein 1 within the viral particle. This protein appeared to be post-translationnally modified by glycosylation and phosphorylation. We proposed a secondary structure prediction of APM Capsid protein 1 compared to the Capsid protein structure of Paramecium Bursaria Chlorella Virus 1, another member of the Nucleo-Cytoplasmic Large DNA virus family. Conclusion The characterisation of the full length L425 Capsid coding gene of Acanthamoebae polyphaga Mimivirus provides new insights into the structure of the main Capsid protein. The production of a full length recombinant protein will be useful for further structural studies.

  8. Tandem Mass Spectrometry and Ion Mobility Reveals Structural Insight into Eicosanoid Product Ion Formation.

    Di Giovanni, James P; Barkley, Robert M; Jones, David N M; Hankin, Joseph A; Murphy, Robert C

    2018-04-23

    Ion mobility measurements of product ions were used to characterize the collisional cross section (CCS) of various complex lipid [M-H] - ions using traveling wave ion mobility mass spectrometry (TWIMS). TWIMS analysis of various product ions derived after collisional activation of mono- and dihydroxy arachidonate metabolites was found to be more complex than the analysis of intact molecular ions and provided some insight into molecular mechanisms involved in product ion formation. The CCS observed for the molecular ion [M-H] - and certain product ions were consistent with a folded ion structure, the latter predicted by the proposed mechanisms of product ion formation. Unexpectedly, product ions from [M-H-H 2 O-CO 2 ] - and [M-H-H 2 O] - displayed complex ion mobility profiles suggesting multiple mechanisms of ion formation. The [M-H-H 2 O] - ion from LTB 4 was studied in more detail using both nitrogen and helium as the drift gas in the ion mobility cell. One population of [M-H-H 2 O] - product ions from LTB 4 was consistent with formation of covalent ring structures, while the ions displaying a higher CCS were consistent with a more open-chain structure. Using molecular dynamics and theoretical CCS calculations, energy minimized structures of those product ions with the open-chain structures were found to have a higher CCS than a folded molecular ion structure. The measurement of product ion mobility can be an additional and unique signature of eicosanoids measured by LC-MS/MS techniques. Graphical Abstract ᅟ.

  9. Rich RNA Structure Landscapes Revealed by Mutate-and-Map Analysis.

    Pablo Cordero

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Landscapes exhibiting multiple secondary structures arise in natural RNA molecules that modulate gene expression, protein synthesis, and viral infection [corrected]. We report herein that high-throughput chemical experiments can isolate an RNA's multiple alternative secondary structures as they are stabilized by systematic mutagenesis (mutate-and-map, M2 and that a computational algorithm, REEFFIT, enables unbiased reconstruction of these states' structures and populations. In an in silico benchmark on non-coding RNAs with complex landscapes, M2-REEFFIT recovers 95% of RNA helices present with at least 25% population while maintaining a low false discovery rate (10% and conservative error estimates. In experimental benchmarks, M2-REEFFIT recovers the structure landscapes of a 35-nt MedLoop hairpin, a 110-nt 16S rRNA four-way junction with an excited state, a 25-nt bistable hairpin, and a 112-nt three-state adenine riboswitch with its expression platform, molecules whose characterization previously required expert mutational analysis and specialized NMR or chemical mapping experiments. With this validation, M2-REEFFIT enabled tests of whether artificial RNA sequences might exhibit complex landscapes in the absence of explicit design. An artificial flavin mononucleotide riboswitch and a randomly generated RNA sequence are found to interconvert between three or more states, including structures for which there was no design, but that could be stabilized through mutations. These results highlight the likely pervasiveness of rich landscapes with multiple secondary structures in both natural and artificial RNAs and demonstrate an automated chemical/computational route for their empirical characterization.

  10. Tandem Mass Spectrometry and Ion Mobility Reveals Structural Insight into Eicosanoid Product Ion Formation

    Di Giovanni, James P.; Barkley, Robert M.; Jones, David N. M.; Hankin, Joseph A.; Murphy, Robert C.

    2018-04-01

    Ion mobility measurements of product ions were used to characterize the collisional cross section (CCS) of various complex lipid [M-H]- ions using traveling wave ion mobility mass spectrometry (TWIMS). TWIMS analysis of various product ions derived after collisional activation of mono- and dihydroxy arachidonate metabolites was found to be more complex than the analysis of intact molecular ions and provided some insight into molecular mechanisms involved in product ion formation. The CCS observed for the molecular ion [M-H]- and certain product ions were consistent with a folded ion structure, the latter predicted by the proposed mechanisms of product ion formation. Unexpectedly, product ions from [M-H-H2O-CO2]- and [M-H-H2O]- displayed complex ion mobility profiles suggesting multiple mechanisms of ion formation. The [M-H-H2O]- ion from LTB4 was studied in more detail using both nitrogen and helium as the drift gas in the ion mobility cell. One population of [M-H-H2O]- product ions from LTB4 was consistent with formation of covalent ring structures, while the ions displaying a higher CCS were consistent with a more open-chain structure. Using molecular dynamics and theoretical CCS calculations, energy minimized structures of those product ions with the open-chain structures were found to have a higher CCS than a folded molecular ion structure. The measurement of product ion mobility can be an additional and unique signature of eicosanoids measured by LC-MS/MS techniques. [Figure not available: see fulltext.

  11. Conductivity anisotropy helps to reveal the microscopic structure of a density wave at imperfect nesting

    Grigoriev, P.D.; Kostenko, S.S.

    2015-01-01

    Superconductivity or metallic state may coexist with density wave ordering at imperfect nesting of the Fermi surface. In addition to the macroscopic spatial phase separation, there are, at least, two possible microscopic structures of such coexistence: (i) the soliton-wall phase and (ii) the ungapped Fermi-surface pockets. We show that the conductivity anisotropy allows us to distinguish these two microscopic density-wave structures. The results obtained may help to analyze the experimental observations in layered organic metals (TMTSF) 2 PF 6 , (TMTSF) 2 ClO 4 , α-(BEDT-TTF) 2 KHg(SCN) 4 and in other compounds

  12. Mitochondrial and nuclear sequence polymorphisms reveal geographic structuring in Amazonian populations of Echinococcus vogeli (Cestoda: Taeniidae).

    Santos, Guilherme B; Soares, Manoel do C P; de F Brito, Elisabete M; Rodrigues, André L; Siqueira, Nilton G; Gomes-Gouvêa, Michele S; Alves, Max M; Carneiro, Liliane A; Malheiros, Andreza P; Póvoa, Marinete M; Zaha, Arnaldo; Haag, Karen L

    2012-12-01

    To date, nothing is known about the genetic diversity of the Echinococcus neotropical species, Echinococcus vogeli and Echinococcus oligarthrus. Here we used mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequence polymorphisms to uncover the genetic structure, transmission and history of E. vogeli in the Brazilian Amazon, based on a sample of 38 isolates obtained from human and wild animal hosts. We confirm that the parasite is partially synanthropic and show that its populations are diverse. Furthermore, significant geographical structuring is found, with western and eastern populations being genetically divergent. Copyright © 2012 Australian Society for Parasitology Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Herbarium specimens reveal a historical shift in phylogeographic structure of common ragweed during native range disturbance

    Martin, Michael David; Zimmer, Elizabeth A.; Olsen, Morten Tange

    2014-01-01

    Invasive plants provide ample opportunity to study evolutionary shifts that occur after introduction to novel environments. However, although genetic characters pre-dating introduction can be important determinants of later success, large-scale investigations of historical genetic structure have......'s spatial genetic structure mirrors both the palaeo-record of Ambrosia pollen deposition and the historical pattern of agricultural density across the landscape. Furthermore, for unknown reasons, this spatial genetic pattern has changed substantially in the intervening years. Following on previous work...

  14. Hydrogen-induced structural changes in polycrystalline silicon as revealed by positron lifetime spectroscopy

    Arole, V.M.; Takwale, M.G.; Bhide, V.G.

    1989-01-01

    Hydrogen passivation of polycrystalline silicon wafer is carried out in order to reduce the deleterious effects of grain boundaries. A systematic variation is made in the process parameters implemented during hydrogen passivation and the results of room temperature resistivity measurements are reported. As an efficient tool to study the structure change, positron lifetime spectroscopic measurements are performed on original and hydrogenated polycrystalline silicon wafers and a systematic correlation is sought between the changes that take place in the electrical and structural properties of polycrystalline silicon wafer, brought about by hydrogen passivation. (author)

  15. Conductivity anisotropy helps to reveal the microscopic structure of a density wave at imperfect nesting

    Grigoriev, P.D., E-mail: grigorev@itp.ac.ru [L.D. Landau Institute for Theoretical Physics, Chernogolovka 142432 (Russian Federation); Institut Laue-Langevin, Grenoble (France); Kostenko, S.S. [Institute of Problems of Chemical Physics, 142432 Chernogolovka (Russian Federation)

    2015-03-01

    Superconductivity or metallic state may coexist with density wave ordering at imperfect nesting of the Fermi surface. In addition to the macroscopic spatial phase separation, there are, at least, two possible microscopic structures of such coexistence: (i) the soliton-wall phase and (ii) the ungapped Fermi-surface pockets. We show that the conductivity anisotropy allows us to distinguish these two microscopic density-wave structures. The results obtained may help to analyze the experimental observations in layered organic metals (TMTSF){sub 2}PF{sub 6}, (TMTSF){sub 2}ClO{sub 4}, α-(BEDT-TTF){sub 2}KHg(SCN){sub 4} and in other compounds.

  16. Kinematic structures of the solar neighbourhood revealed by Gaia DR1/TGAS and RAVE

    Kushniruk, I.; Schirmer, T.; Bensby, T.

    2017-12-01

    Context. The velocity distribution of stars in the solar neighbourhood is inhomogeneous and rich with stellar streams and kinematic structures. These may retain important clues regarding the formation and dynamical history of the Milky Way. However, the nature and origin of many of the streams and structures is unclear, hindering our understanding of how the Milky Way formed and evolved. Aims: We aim to study the velocity distribution of stars of the solar neighbourhood and investigate the properties of individual kinematic structures in order to improve our understanding of their origins. Methods: Using the astrometric data provided by Gaia DR1/TGAS and radial velocities from RAVE DR5 we perform a wavelet analysis with the à trous algorithm of 55 831 stars that have U and V velocity uncertainties less than 4 km s-1. An auto-convolution histogram method is used to filter the output data, and we then run Monte Carlo simulations to verify that the detected structures are real and are not caused by noise due to velocity uncertainties. Additionally we analysed our stellar sample by splitting all stars into a nearby sample (300 pc), and two chemically defined samples that to a first degree represent the thin and the thick disks. Results: We detect 19 kinematic structures in the solar neighbourhood in the range of scales 3-16 km s-1 at the 3σ confidence level. Among them we identified well-known groups (such as Hercules, Sirius, Coma Berenices, Pleiades, and Wolf 630), confirmed recently detected groups (such as Antoja12 and Bobylev16), and detected a new structure at (U,V) ≈ (37,8) km s-1. Another three new groups are tentatively detected, but require further confirmation. Some of the detected groups show clear dependence on distance in the sense that they are only present in the nearby sample (<300 pc), and others appear to be correlated with chemistry as they are only present in one of the chemically defined thin and thick disk samples. Conclusions: With the much

  17. Natural and Semisynthetic Analogues of Manadoperoxide B Reveal New Structural Requirements for Trypanocidal Activity

    Chianese, Giuseppina; Scala, Fernando; Calcinai, Barbara; Cerrano, Carlo; Dien, Henny A.; Kaiser, Marcel; Tasdemir, Deniz; Taglialatela-Scafati, Orazio

    2013-01-01

    Chemical analysis of the Indonesian sponge Plakortis cfr. lita afforded two new analogues of the potent trypanocidal agent manadoperoxide B (1), namely 12-isomanadoperoxide B (2) and manadoperoxidic acid B (3). These compounds were isolated along with a new short chain dicarboxylate monoester (4), bearing some interesting relationships with the polyketide endoperoxides found in this sponge. Some semi-synthetic analogues of manadoperoxide B (6–8) were prepared and evaluated for antitrypanosomal activity and cytotoxicity. These studies revealed crucial structure–activity relationships that should be taken into account in the design of optimized and simplified endoperoxyketal trypanocidal agents. PMID:23989650

  18. Natural and Semisynthetic Analogues of Manadoperoxide B Reveal New Structural Requirements for Trypanocidal Activity

    Orazio Taglialatela-Scafati

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Chemical analysis of the Indonesian sponge Plakortis cfr. lita afforded two new analogues of the potent trypanocidal agent manadoperoxide B (1, namely 12-isomanadoperoxide B (2 and manadoperoxidic acid B (3. These compounds were isolated along with a new short chain dicarboxylate monoester (4, bearing some interesting relationships with the polyketide endoperoxides found in this sponge. Some semi-synthetic analogues of manadoperoxide B (6–8 were prepared and evaluated for antitrypanosomal activity and cytotoxicity. These studies revealed crucial structure–activity relationships that should be taken into account in the design of optimized and simplified endoperoxyketal trypanocidal agents.

  19. A proton wire and water channel revealed in the crystal structure of isatin hydrolase

    Bjerregaard-Andersen, Kaare; Sommer, Theis; Jensen, Jan Kristian

    2014-01-01

    to a novel family of metalloenzymes that include the bacterial kynurenine formamidase. The product state, mimicked by bound thioisatinate, reveals a water molecule that bridges the thioisatinate to a proton wire in an adjacent water channel and thus allows the proton released by the reaction to escape only...... when the product is formed. The functional proton wire present in IH-b represents a unique catalytic feature common to all hydrolases is here trapped and visualized for the first time. The local molecular environment required to coordinate thioisatinate allows stronger and more confident identification...

  20. Cryo-EM structure of human adenovirus D26 reveals the conservation of structural organization among human adenoviruses.

    Yu, Xiaodi; Veesler, David; Campbell, Melody G; Barry, Mary E; Asturias, Francisco J; Barry, Michael A; Reddy, Vijay S

    2017-05-01

    Human adenoviruses (HAdVs) cause acute respiratory, ocular, and gastroenteric diseases and are also frequently used as gene and vaccine delivery vectors. Unlike the archetype human adenovirus C5 (HAdV-C5), human adenovirus D26 (HAdV-D26) belongs to species-D HAdVs, which target different cellular receptors, and is differentially recognized by immune surveillance mechanisms. HAdV-D26 is being championed as a lower seroprevalent vaccine and oncolytic vector in preclinical and human clinical studies. To understand the molecular basis for their distinct biological properties and independently validate the structures of minor proteins, we determined the first structure of species-D HAdV at 3.7 Å resolution by cryo-electron microscopy. All the hexon hypervariable regions (HVRs), including HVR1, have been identified and exhibit a distinct organization compared to those of HAdV-C5. Despite the differences in the arrangement of helices in the coiled-coil structures, protein IX molecules form a continuous hexagonal network on the capsid exterior. In addition to the structurally conserved region (3 to 300) of IIIa, we identified an extra helical domain comprising residues 314 to 390 that further stabilizes the vertex region. Multiple (two to three) copies of the cleaved amino-terminal fragment of protein VI (pVIn) are observed in each hexon cavity, suggesting that there could be ≥480 copies of VI present in HAdV-D26. In addition, a localized asymmetric reconstruction of the vertex region provides new details of the three-pronged "claw hold" of the trimeric fiber and its interactions with the penton base. These observations resolve the previous conflicting assignments of the minor proteins and suggest the likely conservation of their organization across different HAdVs.

  1. Survey of structures revealed in nucleon-nucleon scattering experiments and dibaryon resonances

    Hidaka, K.; Yokosawa, A.

    1979-01-01

    Structures appearing in various experimental data (particularly those with polarized beams) in nucleon-nucleon systems are reviewed. Evidence is presented for the existence of dibaryon resonances with an emphasis on a diproton resonance in 3 F 3 (J/sup P/ = 3 - ) state. 38 references

  2. Non-Linear Behaviour Of Gelatin Networks Reveals A Hierarchical Structure

    Yang, Zhi; Hemar, Yacine; Hilliou, loic; Gilbert, Elliot P.; McGillivray, Duncan James; Williams, Martin A. K.; Chaieb, Saharoui

    2015-01-01

    We investigate the strain hardening behaviour of various gelatin networks - namely physically-crosslinked gelatin gel, chemically-crosslinked gelatin gels, and a hybrid gels made of a combination of the former two - under large shear deformations using the pre-stress, strain ramp, and large amplitude oscillation shear protocols. Further, the internal structures of physically-crosslinked gelatin gel and chemically-crosslinked gelatin gels were characterized by small angle neutron scattering (SANS) to enable their internal structures to be correlated with their nonlinear rheology. The Kratky plots of SANS data demonstrate the presence of small cross-linked aggregates within the chemically-crosslinked network, whereas in the physically-crosslinked gels a relatively homogeneous structure is observed. Through model fitting to the scattering data, we were able to obtain structural parameters, such as correlation length (ξ), cross-sectional polymer chain radius (Rc), and the fractal dimension (df) of the gel networks. The fractal dimension df obtained from the SANS data of the physically-crosslinked and chemically crosslinked gels is 1.31 and 1.53, respectively. These values are in excellent agreement with the ones obtained from a generalized non-linear elastic theory we used to fit our stress-strain curves. The chemical crosslinking that generates coils and aggregates hinders the free stretching of the triple helices bundles in the physically-crosslinked gels.

  3. Survey of large protein complexes D. vulgaris reveals great structural diversity

    Han, B.-G.; Dong, M.; Liu, H.; Camp, L.; Geller, J.; Singer, M.; Hazen, T. C.; Choi, M.; Witkowska, H. E.; Ball, D. A.; Typke, D.; Downing, K. H.; Shatsky, M.; Brenner, S. E.; Chandonia, J.-M.; Biggin, M. D.; Glaeser, R. M.

    2009-08-15

    An unbiased survey has been made of the stable, most abundant multi-protein complexes in Desulfovibrio vulgaris Hildenborough (DvH) that are larger than Mr {approx} 400 k. The quaternary structures for 8 of the 16 complexes purified during this work were determined by single-particle reconstruction of negatively stained specimens, a success rate {approx}10 times greater than that of previous 'proteomic' screens. In addition, the subunit compositions and stoichiometries of the remaining complexes were determined by biochemical methods. Our data show that the structures of only two of these large complexes, out of the 13 in this set that have recognizable functions, can be modeled with confidence based on the structures of known homologs. These results indicate that there is significantly greater variability in the way that homologous prokaryotic macromolecular complexes are assembled than has generally been appreciated. As a consequence, we suggest that relying solely on previously determined quaternary structures for homologous proteins may not be sufficient to properly understand their role in another cell of interest.

  4. Genetic structure of Polytrichum formosum in relation to the breeding system as revealed by microsatellites

    Van der Velde, M; Van de Zande, L; Bijlsma, R

    Microsatellite variation was determined for three Danish and three Dutch populations of the haploid moss species Polytrichum formosum to gain insight into the relative importance of sexual vs. asexual reproduction for the amount and structure of genetic variation. In general, low levels of

  5. Ichthyoplankton assemblage structure of springs in the Yangtze Estuary revealed by biological and environmental visions.

    Zhang, Hui; Xian, Weiwei; Liu, Shude

    2015-01-01

    The ichthyoplankton assemblage structure in the Yangtze Estuary was analyzed based on four springs in 1999, 2001, 2004 and 2007 in order to provide detailed characterizations of the ichthyoplankton assemblage in springs, examine the long-term dynamics of spring ichthyoplankton assemblages, and evaluate the influence of environmental factors on the spatial distribution and inter-annual variations of ichthyoplankton assemblages associated with the Yangtze Estuary. Forty-two ichthyoplankton species belonging to 23 families were collected. Engraulidae was the most abundant family, including six species and comprising 67.91% of the total catch. Only four species (Coilia mystus, Engraulis japonicus, Trachidermis fasciatus and Allanetta bleekeri) could be considered dominant, accounting for 88.70% of total abundance. The structure of the ichthyoplankton spring assemblage persisted on an annual basis, with the dominant species reappearing consistently even though their abundance fluctuated from year to year. This inter-annual variation probably reflects variable environmental conditions influenced by jellyfish blooms, declining river flow, and overfishing. Canonical correspondence analysis indicated aspatial structure of the ichthyoplankton assemblage in three areas: (1) an inner assemblage dominated by C. mystus; (2) a central assemblage dominated by A. bleekeri and T. fasciatus; and (3) a shelf assemblage featuring E. japonicus. The observed ichthyoplankton assemblage structure appears to be strongly influenced by depth, salinity and suspended particulate matter gradients.

  6. Non-Linear Behaviour Of Gelatin Networks Reveals A Hierarchical Structure

    Yang, Zhi

    2015-12-14

    We investigate the strain hardening behaviour of various gelatin networks - namely physically-crosslinked gelatin gel, chemically-crosslinked gelatin gels, and a hybrid gels made of a combination of the former two - under large shear deformations using the pre-stress, strain ramp, and large amplitude oscillation shear protocols. Further, the internal structures of physically-crosslinked gelatin gel and chemically-crosslinked gelatin gels were characterized by small angle neutron scattering (SANS) to enable their internal structures to be correlated with their nonlinear rheology. The Kratky plots of SANS data demonstrate the presence of small cross-linked aggregates within the chemically-crosslinked network, whereas in the physically-crosslinked gels a relatively homogeneous structure is observed. Through model fitting to the scattering data, we were able to obtain structural parameters, such as correlation length (ξ), cross-sectional polymer chain radius (Rc), and the fractal dimension (df) of the gel networks. The fractal dimension df obtained from the SANS data of the physically-crosslinked and chemically crosslinked gels is 1.31 and 1.53, respectively. These values are in excellent agreement with the ones obtained from a generalized non-linear elastic theory we used to fit our stress-strain curves. The chemical crosslinking that generates coils and aggregates hinders the free stretching of the triple helices bundles in the physically-crosslinked gels.

  7. The Structure of a Conserved Domain of TamB Reveals a Hydrophobic β Taco Fold.

    Josts, Inokentijs; Stubenrauch, Christopher James; Vadlamani, Grishma; Mosbahi, Khedidja; Walker, Daniel; Lithgow, Trevor; Grinter, Rhys

    2017-12-05

    The translocation and assembly module (TAM) plays a role in the transport and insertion of proteins into the bacterial outer membrane. TamB, a component of this system spans the periplasmic space to engage with its partner protein TamA. Despite efforts to characterize the TAM, the structure and mechanism of action of TamB remained enigmatic. Here we present the crystal structure of TamB amino acids 963-1,138. This region represents half of the conserved DUF490 domain, the defining feature of TamB. TamB 963-1138 consists of a concave, taco-shaped β sheet with a hydrophobic interior. This β taco structure is of dimensions capable of accommodating and shielding the hydrophobic side of an amphipathic β strand, potentially allowing TamB to chaperone nascent membrane proteins from the aqueous environment. In addition, sequence analysis suggests that the structure of TamB 963-1138 is shared by a large portion of TamB. This architecture could allow TamB to act as a conduit for membrane proteins. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  8. The structure of Lactococcus lactis thioredoxin reductase reveals molecular features of photo-oxidative damage

    Skjoldager, Nicklas; Bang, Maria Blanner; Rykær, Martin

    2017-01-01

    The NADPH-dependent homodimeric flavoenzyme thioredoxin reductase (TrxR) provides reducing equivalents to thioredoxin, a key regulator of various cellular redox processes. Crystal structures of photo-inactivated thioredoxin reductase (TrxR) from the Gram-positive bacterium Lactococcus lactis have...

  9. Complex structure of the fission yeast SREBP-SCAP binding domains reveals an oligomeric organization.

    Gong, Xin; Qian, Hongwu; Shao, Wei; Li, Jingxian; Wu, Jianping; Liu, Jun-Jie; Li, Wenqi; Wang, Hong-Wei; Espenshade, Peter; Yan, Nieng

    2016-11-01

    Sterol regulatory element-binding protein (SREBP) transcription factors are master regulators of cellular lipid homeostasis in mammals and oxygen-responsive regulators of hypoxic adaptation in fungi. SREBP C-terminus binds to the WD40 domain of SREBP cleavage-activating protein (SCAP), which confers sterol regulation by controlling the ER-to-Golgi transport of the SREBP-SCAP complex and access to the activating proteases in the Golgi. Here, we biochemically and structurally show that the carboxyl terminal domains (CTD) of Sre1 and Scp1, the fission yeast SREBP and SCAP, form a functional 4:4 oligomer and Sre1-CTD forms a dimer of dimers. The crystal structure of Sre1-CTD at 3.5 Å and cryo-EM structure of the complex at 5.4 Å together with in vitro biochemical evidence elucidate three distinct regions in Sre1-CTD required for Scp1 binding, Sre1-CTD dimerization and tetrameric formation. Finally, these structurally identified domains are validated in a cellular context, demonstrating that the proper 4:4 oligomeric complex formation is required for Sre1 activation.

  10. Structures of down syndrome kinases, DYRKs, reveal mechanisms of kinase activation and substrate recognition

    Soundararajan, M.; Roos, A.K.; Savitsky, P.

    2013-01-01

    Dual-specificity tyrosine-(Y)-phosphorylation-regulated kinases (DYRKs) play key roles in brain development, regulation of splicing, and apoptosis, and are potential drug targets for neurodegenerative diseases and cancer. We present crystal structures of one representative member of each DYRK sub...

  11. The structure and dynamics of chitin nanofibrils in an aqueous environment revealed by molecular dynamics simulations

    Střelcová, Z.; Kulhánek, P.; Friák, Martin; Fabritius, H.; Petrov, M.; Neugebauer, J.; Koča, J.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 6, č. 36 (2016), s. 30710-30721 ISSN 2046-2069 Institutional support: RVO:68081723 Keywords : FREE-ENERGY CALCULATIONS * PARTICLE MESH EWALD * ALPHA-CHITIN * CRYSTAL-STRUCTURE * INSECT CHITIN * SURFACE-AREA * AB-INITIO Subject RIV: BO - Biophysics Impact factor: 3.108, year: 2016

  12. A high-quality human reference panel reveals the complexity and distribution of genomic structural variants

    Hehir-Kwa, J.Y.; Marschall, T.; Kloosterman, W.P.; Francioli, L.C.; Baaijens, J.A.; Dijkstra, L.J.; Abdellaoui, A.; Koval, V.; Thung, D.T.; Wardenaar, R.; Renkens, I.; Coe, B.P.; Deelen, P.; de Ligt, J.; Lameijer, E.W.; Dijk, F.; Hormozdiari, F.; Uitterlinden, A.G.; van Duijn, C.M.; Eichler, E.E.; Bakker, P.I.W.; Swertz, M.A.; Wijmenga, C.; van Ommen, G.J.B; Slagboom, P.E.; Boomsma, D.I.; Schönhuth, A.; Ye, K.; Guryev, V.

    2016-01-01

    Structural variation (SV) represents a major source of differences between individual human genomes and has been linked to disease phenotypes. However, the majority of studies provide neither a global view of the full spectrum of these variants nor integrate them into reference panels of genetic

  13. Community structure of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in undisturbed vegetation revealed by analyses of LSU rdna sequences

    Rosendahl, Søren; Holtgrewe-Stukenbrock, Eva

    2004-01-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) form a mutualistic symbiosis with plant roots and are found in most ecosystems. In this study the community structure of AMF in a clade of the genus Glomus was examined in undisturbed costal grassland using LSU rDNA sequences amplified from roots of Hieracium...

  14. Nuclear Species-Diagnostic SNP Markers Mined from 454 Amplicon Sequencing Reveal Admixture Genomic Structure of Modern Citrus Varieties

    Curk, Franck; Ancillo, Gema; Ollitrault, Frédérique; Perrier, Xavier; Jacquemoud-Collet, Jean-Pierre; Garcia-Lor, Andres; Navarro, Luis; Ollitrault, Patrick

    2015-01-01

    Most cultivated Citrus species originated from interspecific hybridisation between four ancestral taxa (C. reticulata, C. maxima, C. medica, and C. micrantha) with limited further interspecific recombination due to vegetative propagation. This evolution resulted in admixture genomes with frequent interspecific heterozygosity. Moreover, a major part of the phenotypic diversity of edible citrus results from the initial differentiation between these taxa. Deciphering the phylogenomic structure of citrus germplasm is therefore essential for an efficient utilization of citrus biodiversity in breeding schemes. The objective of this work was to develop a set of species-diagnostic single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers for the four Citrus ancestral taxa covering the nine chromosomes, and to use these markers to infer the phylogenomic structure of secondary species and modern cultivars. Species-diagnostic SNPs were mined from 454 amplicon sequencing of 57 gene fragments from 26 genotypes of the four basic taxa. Of the 1,053 SNPs mined from 28,507 kb sequence, 273 were found to be highly diagnostic for a single basic taxon. Species-diagnostic SNP markers (105) were used to analyse the admixture structure of varieties and rootstocks. This revealed C. maxima introgressions in most of the old and in all recent selections of mandarins, and suggested that C. reticulata × C. maxima reticulation and introgression processes were important in edible mandarin domestication. The large range of phylogenomic constitutions between C. reticulata and C. maxima revealed in mandarins, tangelos, tangors, sweet oranges, sour oranges, grapefruits, and orangelos is favourable for genetic association studies based on phylogenomic structures of the germplasm. Inferred admixture structures were in agreement with previous hypotheses regarding the origin of several secondary species and also revealed the probable origin of several acid citrus varieties. The developed species-diagnostic SNP

  15. Revealing Hidden Structural Order Controlling Both Fast and Slow Glassy Dynamics in Supercooled Liquids

    Hua Tong

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The dynamics of a supercooled liquid near the glass transition is characterized by two-step relaxation, fast β and slow α relaxations. Because of the apparently disordered nature of glassy structures, there have been long debates over whether the origin of drastic slowing-down of the α relaxation accompanied by heterogeneous dynamics is thermodynamic or dynamic. Furthermore, it has been elusive whether there is any deep connection between fast β and slow α modes. To settle these issues, here we introduce a set of new structural order parameters characterizing sterically favored structures with high local packing capability, and then access structure-dynamics correlation by a novel nonlocal approach. We find that the particle mobility is under control of the static order parameter field. The fast β process is controlled by the instantaneous order parameter field locally, resulting in short-time particle-scale dynamics. Then the mobility field progressively develops with time t, following the initial order parameter field from disorder to more ordered regions. As is well known, the heterogeneity in the mobility field (dynamic heterogeneity is maximized with a characteristic length ξ_{4}, when t reaches the relaxation time τ_{α}. We discover that this mobility pattern can be predicted solely by a spatial coarse graining of the initial order parameter field at t=0 over a length ξ without any dynamical information. Furthermore, we find a relation ξ∼ξ_{4}, indicating that the static length ξ grows coherently with the dynamic one ξ_{4} upon cooling. This further suggests an intrinsic link between τ_{α} and ξ: the growth of the static length ξ is the origin of dynamical slowing-down. These we confirm for the first time in binary glass formers both in two and three spatial dimensions. Thus, a static structure has two intrinsic characteristic lengths, particle size and ξ, which control dynamics in local and nonlocal manners, resulting

  16. Revealing Hidden Structural Order Controlling Both Fast and Slow Glassy Dynamics in Supercooled Liquids

    Tong, Hua; Tanaka, Hajime

    2018-01-01

    The dynamics of a supercooled liquid near the glass transition is characterized by two-step relaxation, fast β and slow α relaxations. Because of the apparently disordered nature of glassy structures, there have been long debates over whether the origin of drastic slowing-down of the α relaxation accompanied by heterogeneous dynamics is thermodynamic or dynamic. Furthermore, it has been elusive whether there is any deep connection between fast β and slow α modes. To settle these issues, here we introduce a set of new structural order parameters characterizing sterically favored structures with high local packing capability, and then access structure-dynamics correlation by a novel nonlocal approach. We find that the particle mobility is under control of the static order parameter field. The fast β process is controlled by the instantaneous order parameter field locally, resulting in short-time particle-scale dynamics. Then the mobility field progressively develops with time t , following the initial order parameter field from disorder to more ordered regions. As is well known, the heterogeneity in the mobility field (dynamic heterogeneity) is maximized with a characteristic length ξ4, when t reaches the relaxation time τα. We discover that this mobility pattern can be predicted solely by a spatial coarse graining of the initial order parameter field at t =0 over a length ξ without any dynamical information. Furthermore, we find a relation ξ ˜ξ4, indicating that the static length ξ grows coherently with the dynamic one ξ4 upon cooling. This further suggests an intrinsic link between τα and ξ : the growth of the static length ξ is the origin of dynamical slowing-down. These we confirm for the first time in binary glass formers both in two and three spatial dimensions. Thus, a static structure has two intrinsic characteristic lengths, particle size and ξ , which control dynamics in local and nonlocal manners, resulting in the emergence of the two

  17. Structure-function analysis of Staphylococcus aureus amidase reveals the determinants of peptidoglycan recognition and cleavage.

    Büttner, Felix Michael; Zoll, Sebastian; Nega, Mulugeta; Götz, Friedrich; Stehle, Thilo

    2014-04-18

    The bifunctional major autolysin AtlA of Staphylococcus aureus cleaves the bacterium's peptidoglycan network (PGN) at two distinct sites during cell division. Deletion of the enzyme results in large cell clusters with disordered division patterns, indicating that AtlA could be a promising target for the development of new antibiotics. One of the two functions of AtlA is performed by the N-acetylmuramyl-l-alanine amidase AmiA, which cleaves the bond between the carbohydrate and the peptide moieties of PGN. To establish the structural requirements of PGN recognition and the enzymatic mechanism of cleavage, we solved the crystal structure of the catalytic domain of AmiA (AmiA-cat) in complex with a peptidoglycan-derived ligand at 1.55 Å resolution. The peptide stem is clearly visible in the structure, forming extensive contacts with protein residues by docking into an elongated groove. Less well defined electron density and the analysis of surface features indicate likely positions of the carbohydrate backbone and the pentaglycine bridge. Substrate specificity analysis supports the importance of the pentaglycine bridge for fitting into the binding cleft of AmiA-cat. PGN of S. aureus with l-lysine tethered with d-alanine via a pentaglycine bridge is completely hydrolyzed, whereas PGN of Bacillus subtilis with meso-diaminopimelic acid directly tethered with d-alanine is not hydrolyzed. An active site mutant, H370A, of AmiA-cat was completely inactive, providing further support for the proposed catalytic mechanism of AmiA. The structure reported here is not only the first of any bacterial amidase in which both the PGN component and the water molecule that carries out the nucleophilic attack on the carbonyl carbon of the scissile bond are present; it is also the first peptidoglycan amidase complex structure of an important human pathogen.

  18. Quantitative image analysis reveals distinct structural transitions during aging in Caenorhabditis elegans tissues.

    Josiah Johnston

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Aging is associated with functional and structural declines in many body systems, even in the absence of underlying disease. In particular, skeletal muscles experience severe declines during aging, a phenomenon termed sarcopenia. Despite the high incidence and severity of sarcopenia, little is known about contributing factors and development. Many studies focus on functional aspects of aging-related tissue decline, while structural details remain understudied. Traditional approaches for quantifying structural changes have assessed individual markers at discrete intervals. Such approaches are inadequate for the complex changes associated with aging. An alternative is to consider changes in overall morphology rather than in specific markers. We have used this approach to quantitatively track tissue architecture during adulthood and aging in the C. elegans pharynx, the neuromuscular feeding organ. Using pattern recognition to analyze aged-grouped pharynx images, we identified discrete step-wise transitions between distinct morphologies. The morphology state transitions were maintained in mutants with pharynx neurotransmission defects, although the pace of the transitions was altered. Longitudinal measurements of pharynx function identified a predictive relationship between mid-life pharynx morphology and function at later ages. These studies demonstrate for the first time that adult tissues undergo distinct structural transitions reflecting postdevelopmental events. The processes that underlie these architectural changes may contribute to increased disease risk during aging, and may be targets for factors that alter the aging rate. This work further demonstrates that pattern analysis of an image series offers a novel and generally accessible approach for quantifying morphological changes and identifying structural biomarkers.

  19. Structure-Function Analysis of Staphylococcus aureus Amidase Reveals the Determinants of Peptidoglycan Recognition and Cleavage*

    Büttner, Felix Michael; Zoll, Sebastian; Nega, Mulugeta; Götz, Friedrich; Stehle, Thilo

    2014-01-01

    The bifunctional major autolysin AtlA of Staphylococcus aureus cleaves the bacterium's peptidoglycan network (PGN) at two distinct sites during cell division. Deletion of the enzyme results in large cell clusters with disordered division patterns, indicating that AtlA could be a promising target for the development of new antibiotics. One of the two functions of AtlA is performed by the N-acetylmuramyl-l-alanine amidase AmiA, which cleaves the bond between the carbohydrate and the peptide moieties of PGN. To establish the structural requirements of PGN recognition and the enzymatic mechanism of cleavage, we solved the crystal structure of the catalytic domain of AmiA (AmiA-cat) in complex with a peptidoglycan-derived ligand at 1.55 Å resolution. The peptide stem is clearly visible in the structure, forming extensive contacts with protein residues by docking into an elongated groove. Less well defined electron density and the analysis of surface features indicate likely positions of the carbohydrate backbone and the pentaglycine bridge. Substrate specificity analysis supports the importance of the pentaglycine bridge for fitting into the binding cleft of AmiA-cat. PGN of S. aureus with l-lysine tethered with d-alanine via a pentaglycine bridge is completely hydrolyzed, whereas PGN of Bacillus subtilis with meso-diaminopimelic acid directly tethered with d-alanine is not hydrolyzed. An active site mutant, H370A, of AmiA-cat was completely inactive, providing further support for the proposed catalytic mechanism of AmiA. The structure reported here is not only the first of any bacterial amidase in which both the PGN component and the water molecule that carries out the nucleophilic attack on the carbonyl carbon of the scissile bond are present; it is also the first peptidoglycan amidase complex structure of an important human pathogen. PMID:24599952

  20. Coupled cryoconite ecosystem structure-function relationships are revealed by comparing bacterial communities in alpine and Arctic glaciers

    Edwards, Arwyn; Mur, Luis A. J.; Girdwood, Susan E.

    2014-01-01

    Cryoconite holes are known as foci of microbial diversity and activity on polar glacier surfaces, but are virtually unexplored microbial habitats in alpine regions. In addition, whether cryoconite community structure reflects ecosystem functionality is poorly understood. Terminal restriction...... revealed Proteobacteria were particularly abundant, with Cyanobacteria likely acting as ecosystem engineers in both alpine and Arctic cryoconite communities. However, despite these generalities, significant differences in bacterial community structures, compositions and metabolomes are found between alpine...... fragment length polymorphism and Fourier transform infrared metabolite fingerprinting of cryoconite from glaciers in Austria, Greenland and Svalbard demonstrated cryoconite bacterial communities are closely correlated with cognate metabolite fingerprints. The influence of bacterial-associated fatty acids...

  1. The solution structure of the N-terminal zinc finger of GATA-1 reveals a specific binding face for the transcriptional co-factor FOG

    Kowalski, K.; Czolij, R.; King, G.F.; Crossley, M.; Mackay, J.P.

    1999-01-01

    Zinc fingers (ZnFs) are generally regarded as DNA-binding motifs. However, a number of recent reports have implicated particular ZnFs in the mediation of protein-protein interactions. The N-terminal ZnF of GATA-1 (NF) is one such finger, having been shown to interact with a number of other proteins, including the recently discovered transcriptional co-factor FOG. Here we solve the three-dimensional structure of the NF in solution using multidimensional 1H/15N NMR spectroscopy, and we use 1H/15N spin relaxation measurements to investigate its backbone dynamics. The structure consists of two distorted β-hairpins and a single α-helix, and is similar to that of the C-terminal ZnF of chicken GATA-1. Comparisons of the NF structure with those of other C4-type zinc binding motifs, including hormone receptor and LIM domains, also reveal substantial structural homology. Finally, we use the structure to map the spatial locations of NF residues shown by mutagenesis to be essential for FOG binding, and demonstrate that these residues all lie on a single face of the NF. Notably, this face is well removed from the putative DNA- binding face of the NF, an observation which is suggestive of simultaneous roles for the NF; that is, stabilisation of GATA-1 DNA complexes and recruitment of FOG to GATA-1-controlled promoter regions

  2. Structure and mechanism of calmodulin binding to a signaling sphingolipid reveal new aspects of lipid-protein interactions

    Kovacs, Erika; Harmat, Veronika; Tóth, Judit; Vértessy, Beáta G.; Módos, Károly; Kardos, József; Liliom, Károly

    2010-01-01

    Lipid-protein interactions are rarely characterized at a structural molecular level due to technical difficulties; however, the biological significance of understanding the mechanism of these interactions is outstanding. In this report, we provide mechanistic insight into the inhibitory complex formation of the lipid mediator sphingosylphosphorylcholine with calmodulin, the most central and ubiquitous regulator protein in calcium signaling. We applied crystallographic, thermodynamic, kinetic, and spectroscopic approaches using purified bovine calmodulin and bovine cerebral microsomal fraction to arrive at our conclusions. Here we present 1) a 1.6-Å resolution crystal structure of their complex, in which the sphingolipid occupies the conventional hydrophobic binding site on calmodulin; 2) a peculiar stoichiometry-dependent binding process: at low or high protein-to-lipid ratio calmodulin binds lipid micelles or a few lipid molecules in a compact globular conformation, respectively, and 3) evidence that the sphingolipid displaces calmodulin from its targets on cerebral microsomes. We have ascertained the specificity of the interaction using structurally related lipids as controls. Our observations reveal the structural basis of selective calmodulin inhibition by the sphingolipid. On the basis of the crystallographic and biophysical characterization of the calmodulin–sphingosylphosphorylcholine interaction, we propose a novel lipid-protein binding model, which might be applicable to other interactions as well.—Kovacs, E., Harmat, V., Tóth, J., Vértessy, B. G., Módos, K., Kardos, J., Liliom, K. Structure and mechanism of calmodulin binding to a signaling sphingolipid reveal new aspects of lipid-protein interactions. PMID:20522785

  3. Crystal Structure of Homoserine Transacetylase from Haemophilus Influenzae Reveals a New Family of alpha/beta-Hydrolases

    Mirza,I.; Nazi, I.; Korczynska, M.; Wright, G.; Berghuis, A.

    2005-01-01

    Homoserine transacetylase catalyzes one of the required steps in the biosynthesis of methionine in fungi and several bacteria. We have determined the crystal structure of homoserine transacetylase from Haemophilus influenzae to a resolution of 1.65 A. The structure identifies this enzyme to be a member of the alpha/beta-hydrolase structural superfamily. The active site of the enzyme is located near the end of a deep tunnel formed by the juxtaposition of two domains and incorporates a catalytic triad involving Ser143, His337, and Asp304. A structural basis is given for the observed double displacement kinetic mechanism of homoserine transacetylase. Furthermore, the properties of the tunnel provide a rationale for how homoserine transacetylase catalyzes a transferase reaction vs. hydrolysis, despite extensive similarity in active site architecture to hydrolytic enzymes.

  4. Structural and functional analysis of cyclin D1 reveals p27 and substrate inhibitor binding requirements.

    Liu, Shu; Bolger, Joshua K; Kirkland, Lindsay O; Premnath, Padmavathy N; McInnes, Campbell

    2010-12-17

    An alternative strategy for inhibition of the cyclin dependent kinases (CDKs) in antitumor drug discovery is afforded through the substrate recruitment site on the cyclin positive regulatory subunit. Critical CDK substrates such as the Rb and E2F families must undergo cyclin groove binding before phosphorylation, and hence inhibitors of this interaction also block substrate specific kinase activity. This approach offers the potential to generate highly selective and cell cycle specific CDK inhibitors and to reduce the inhibition of transcription mediated through CDK7 and 9, commonly observed with ATP competitive compounds. While highly potent peptide and small molecule inhibitors of CDK2/cyclin A, E substrate recruitment have been reported, little information has been generated on the determinants of inhibitor binding to the cyclin groove of the CDK4/cyclin D1 complex. CDK4/cyclin D is a validated anticancer drug target and continues to be widely pursued in the development of new therapeutics based on cell cycle blockade. We have therefore investigated the structural basis for peptide binding to its cyclin groove and have examined the features contributing to potency and selectivity of inhibitors. Peptidic inhibitors of CDK4/cyclin D of pRb phosphorylation have been synthesized, and their complexes with CDK4/cyclin D1 crystal structures have been generated. Based on available structural information, comparisons of the cyclin grooves of cyclin A2 and D1 are presented and provide insights into the determinants for peptide binding and the basis for differential binding and inhibition. In addition, a complex structure has been generated in order to model the interactions of the CDKI, p27(KIP)¹, with cyclin D1. This information has been used to shed light onto the endogenous inhibition of CDK4 and also to identify unique aspects of cyclin D1 that can be exploited in the design of cyclin groove based CDK inhibitors. Peptidic and nonpeptidic compounds have been

  5. Structural Analysis of Silicic Lavas Reveals the Importance of Endogenous Flow During Emplacement

    Andrews, G. D.; Martens, A.; Isom, S.; Maxwell, A.; Brown, S. R.

    2017-12-01

    Recent observations of silicic lava flows in Chile strongly suggest sustained, endogeneous flow beneath an insulating carapace, where the flow advances through breakouts at the flow margin. New mapping of vertical exposures around the margin of Obsidian Dome, California, has identified discreet lobe structures in cross-section, suggesting that flow-front breakouts occured there during emplacement. The flow lobes are identified through structural measurements of flow-banding orientation and the stretching directions of vesicles. Newly acquired lidar of the Inyo Domes, including Obsidian Dome, is being analyzed to better understand the patterns of folding on the upper surface of the lavas, and to test for fold vergence patterns that may distinguish between endogenous and exogenous flow.

  6. Population structure of Aggarwals of north India as revealed by molecular markers.

    Gupta, Vipin; Khadgawat, Rajesh; Ng, Hon Keung Tony; Kumar, Satish; Rao, Vadlamudi Raghavendra; Sachdeva, Mohinder Pal

    2010-12-01

    Using molecular genetic data on Aggarwals (Vaish/Vysya), an endogamous population group of north India, we provide evidence of its homogeneous unstratified population structure. We found the mean average heterozygosity value of 0.33 for 14 single nucleotide polymorphisms belonging to four genes (TCF7L2-, HHEX-, KCNJ11-, and ADIPOQ-) in the Aggarwal population (sample of 184 individuals) and tried to evaluate the genomic efficiency of endogamy in this population with the help of clan-based stratified analysis. We concluded that the sociocultural identity of the endogamous population groups could act as a robust proxy maker for inferring their homogeneity and population structure in India, which is ideal also for population selection for future genome-wide association studies in the country.

  7. 3D structure of eukaryotic flagella in a quiescent state revealed by cryo-electron tomography

    Nicastro, Daniela; McIntosh, J. Richard; Baumeister, Wolfgang

    2005-01-01

    We have used cryo-electron tomography to investigate the 3D structure and macromolecular organization of intact, frozen-hydrated sea urchin sperm flagella in a quiescent state. The tomographic reconstructions provide information at a resolution better than 6 nm about the in situ arrangements of macromolecules that are key for flagellar motility. We have visualized the heptameric rings of the motor domains in the outer dynein arm complex and determined that they lie parallel to the plane that contains the axes of neighboring flagellar microtubules. Both the material associated with the central pair of microtubules and the radial spokes display a plane of symmetry that helps to explain the planar beat pattern of these flagella. Cryo-electron tomography has proven to be a powerful technique for helping us understand the relationships between flagellar structure and function and the design of macromolecular machines in situ. PMID:16246999

  8. Elements of the Chicxulub Impact Structure as Revealed in SRTM and Surface GPS Topographic Data

    Kinsland, Gary L.; Sanchez, Gary; Kobrick, Michael; Cardador, Manuel Hurtado

    2003-01-01

    Pope et al. [1] utilized the elevations from the Petroleos Mexicanos (PEMEX) gravity data files to show that the main component of the surface expression of the Chicxulub Impact Structure is a roughly semi-circular, lowrelief depression about 90 km in diameter. They also identified other topographic features and the elements of the buried impact, which possibly led to the development of these features. These are summarized in Table 1. Kinsland et al. [2] presented a connection between these topographic anomalies, small gravity anomalies and buried structure of the impact. Very recently we have acquired digital topography data from NASA s Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM). Our subset covers 6 square degrees from 20deg N 91degW to 22deg N 88degW (corner to corner) with a pixel size of about 90m. This area includes all of the identified portion of the crater on land.

  9. Agarose gel shift assay reveals that calreticulin favors substrates with a quaternary structure in solution

    Boelt, Sanne Grundvad; Houen, Gunnar; Højrup, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Here we present an agarose gel shift assay that, in contrast to other electrophoresis approaches, is loaded in the center of the gel. This allows proteins to migrate in either direction according to their isoelectric points. Therefore, the presented assay enables a direct visualization, separation...... structure. It is also demonstrated that the agarose gel shift assay is useful in the study of other protein interactions and can be used as an alternative method to native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis....... measure of interactions. Therefore, no interaction studies between calreticulin and substrates in solution have been investigated previously. The results presented here indicate that calreticulin has a preference for substrates with a quaternary structure and primarily β-sheets in their secondary...

  10. A personal view of nucleon structure as revealed by electron scattering

    Hofstadter, R.

    1989-01-01

    In this article the author charts his scientific career from graduation in 1935. His work on the No I (T1) scintillator detector developed a widely used tool for particle physicists. He later used these detectors in experiments to study nucleon structure via inelastic electron scattering, working mainly with deuterium, alpha particles and beryllium. Proton and neutron ''size'' were early successes of the fifties, with nucleon form factors following after several years' more work. (UK)

  11. Chromatin organization at the nuclear periphery as revealed by image analysis of structured illumination microscopy data

    Fišerová, Jindřiška; Efenberková, Michaela; Sieger, T.; Maninová, Miloslava; Uhlířová, Jana; Hozák, Pavel

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 130, č. 12 (2017), s. 2066-2077 ISSN 0021-9533 R&D Projects: GA ČR GJ15-08835Y; GA MŠk(CZ) LM2015062 Institutional support: RVO:68378050 Keywords : Structured illumination * Image analysis * Chromation * Nucleus * Histone modification * Nuclear pore complexes Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology OBOR OECD: Cell biology Impact factor: 4.431, year: 2016

  12. Lithosphere structure in Madagascar as revealed from receiver functions and surface waves analysis.

    Rindraharisaona, E. J.; Tilmann, F. J.; Yuan, X.; Dreiling, J.; Priestley, K. F.; Barruol, G.; Wysession, M. E.

    2017-12-01

    The geological history of Madagascar makes it an ideal place to study the lithospheric structure and its evolution. It comprises Archean to Proterozoic units on the central eastern part, which is surrounded by a Triassic to Jurassic basin formation in the west and Cretaceous volcanics along the coasts. Quaternary volcanic rocks have been embedded in crystalline and sedimentary rocks. The aim of the present work is to characterize the crustal structure and determine the imprint of the dominant geodynamic events that have affected Madagascar: the Pan-African orogeny, the breakup of Gondwanaland and Neogene tectonic activity. From 2011 to 2014 different temporary seismic arrays were deployed in Madagascar. We based the current study mostly on SELASOMA project, which is composed of 50 seismic stations that were installed traversing southern Madagascar from the west to the east, sampling the different geological units. To measured seismic dispersion curves, one a wide period ranges using ambient noise, Rayleigh and Love surface waves. To compute the average crustal Vp/Vs ratio internal crustal structure and discontinuities in the mantle, we use both P- and S-waves receiver functions. To better resolve of the crustal structure, we jointly inverted P-wave receiver functions and Rayleigh wave group velocity.The crustal extension during the Carboniferous to Cenozoic has thinned the igneous crust down to 15 km in the western Morondava basin by removing much of the lower crust, while the thickness of the upper crust is nearly identical in the sedimentary basin and under Proterozoic and Archaean rocks of the eastern two thirds of Southern Madagascar. In general, the Archean crust is thicker than the Proterozoic, because mafic component is missing in the Proterozoic domain while it forms the bottom of the Archean crust. The lithosphere thickness in the southern part of Madagascar is estimated to be between 90 and 125 km.

  13. Crystal structure of an orthomyxovirus matrix protein reveals mechanisms for self-polymerization and membrane association.

    Zhang, Wenting; Zheng, Wenjie; Toh, Yukimatsu; Betancourt-Solis, Miguel A; Tu, Jiagang; Fan, Yanlin; Vakharia, Vikram N; Liu, Jun; McNew, James A; Jin, Meilin; Tao, Yizhi J

    2017-08-08

    Many enveloped viruses encode a matrix protein. In the influenza A virus, the matrix protein M1 polymerizes into a rigid protein layer underneath the viral envelope to help enforce the shape and structural integrity of intact viruses. The influenza virus M1 is also known to mediate virus budding as well as the nuclear export of the viral nucleocapsids and their subsequent packaging into nascent viral particles. Despite extensive studies on the influenza A virus M1 (FLUA-M1), only crystal structures of its N-terminal domain are available. Here we report the crystal structure of the full-length M1 from another orthomyxovirus that infects fish, the infectious salmon anemia virus (ISAV). The structure of ISAV-M1 assumes the shape of an elbow, with its N domain closely resembling that of the FLUA-M1. The C domain, which is connected to the N domain through a flexible linker, is made of four α-helices packed as a tight bundle. In the crystal, ISAV-M1 monomers form infinite 2D arrays with a network of interactions involving both the N and C domains. Results from liposome flotation assays indicated that ISAV-M1 binds membrane via electrostatic interactions that are primarily mediated by a positively charged surface loop from the N domain. Cryoelectron tomography reconstruction of intact ISA virions identified a matrix protein layer adjacent to the inner leaflet of the viral membrane. The physical dimensions of the virion-associated matrix layer are consistent with the 2D ISAV-M1 crystal lattice, suggesting that the crystal lattice is a valid model for studying M1-M1, M1-membrane, and M1-RNP interactions in the virion.

  14. Unique C. elegans telomeric overhang structures reveal the evolutionarily conserved properties of telomeric DNA

    Školáková, Petra; Foldynová-Trantírková, Silvie; Bednářová, Klára; Fiala, R.; Vorlíčková, Michaela; Trantírek, L.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 43, č. 9 (2015), s. 4733-4745 ISSN 0305-1048 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA13-28310S; GA ČR(CZ) GAP205/12/0466 Institutional support: RVO:68081707 ; RVO:60077344 Keywords : NUCLEASE HYPERSENSITIVE ELEMENT * G-QUADRUPLEX STRUCTURES * I-MOTIF Subject RIV: BO - Biophysics Impact factor: 9.202, year: 2015

  15. Structural-Functional Analysis Reveals a Specific Domain Organization in Family GH20 Hexosaminidases.

    Val-Cid, Cristina; Biarnés, Xevi; Faijes, Magda; Planas, Antoni

    2015-01-01

    Hexosaminidases are involved in important biological processes catalyzing the hydrolysis of N-acetyl-hexosaminyl residues in glycosaminoglycans and glycoconjugates. The GH20 enzymes present diverse domain organizations for which we propose two minimal model architectures: Model A containing at least a non-catalytic GH20b domain and the catalytic one (GH20) always accompanied with an extra α-helix (GH20b-GH20-α), and Model B with only the catalytic GH20 domain. The large Bifidobacterium bifidum lacto-N-biosidase was used as a model protein to evaluate the minimal functional unit due to its interest and structural complexity. By expressing different truncated forms of this enzyme, we show that Model A architectures cannot be reduced to Model B. In particular, there are two structural requirements general to GH20 enzymes with Model A architecture. First, the non-catalytic domain GH20b at the N-terminus of the catalytic GH20 domain is required for expression and seems to stabilize it. Second, the substrate-binding cavity at the GH20 domain always involves a remote element provided by a long loop from the catalytic domain itself or, when this loop is short, by an element from another domain of the multidomain structure or from the dimeric partner. Particularly, the lacto-N-biosidase requires GH20b and the lectin-like domain at the N- and C-termini of the catalytic GH20 domain to be fully soluble and functional. The lectin domain provides this remote element to the active site. We demonstrate restoration of activity of the inactive GH20b-GH20-α construct (model A architecture) by a complementation assay with the lectin-like domain. The engineering of minimal functional units of multidomain GH20 enzymes must consider these structural requirements.

  16. Substrate binding and specificity of rhomboid intramembrane protease revealed by substrate-peptide complex structures

    Zoll, Sebastian; Stanchev, Stancho; Began, Jakub; Škerle, Jan; Lepšík, Martin; Peclinovská, Lucie; Majer, Pavel; Stříšovský, Kvido

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 33, č. 20 (2014), s. 2408-2421 ISSN 0261-4189 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP305/11/1886; GA MŠk(CZ) LK11206; GA MŠk LO1302; GA ČR GBP208/12/G016 Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : intramembrane protease * rhomboid family * rhomboid protease * structure * substrate recognition Subject RIV: CE - Biochemistry Impact factor: 10.434, year: 2014

  17. High-Pressure-Driven Reversible Dissociation of α-Synuclein Fibrils Reveals Structural Hierarchy.

    Piccirilli, Federica; Plotegher, Nicoletta; Ortore, Maria Grazia; Tessari, Isabella; Brucale, Marco; Spinozzi, Francesco; Beltramini, Mariano; Mariani, Paolo; Militello, Valeria; Lupi, Stefano; Perucchi, Andrea; Bubacco, Luigi

    2017-10-17

    The analysis of the α-synuclein (aS) aggregation process, which is involved in Parkinson's disease etiopathogenesis, and of the structural feature of the resulting amyloid fibrils may shed light on the relationship between the structure of aS aggregates and their toxicity. This may be considered a paradigm of the ground work needed to tackle the molecular basis of all the protein-aggregation-related diseases. With this aim, we used chemical and physical dissociation methods to explore the structural organization of wild-type aS fibrils. High pressure (in the kbar range) and alkaline pH were used to disassemble fibrils to collect information on the hierarchic pathway by which distinct β-sheets sequentially unfold using the unique possibility offered by high-pressure Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. The results point toward the formation of kinetic traps in the energy landscape of aS fibril disassembly and the presence of transient partially folded species during the process. Since we found that the dissociation of wild-type aS fibrils by high pressure is reversible upon pressure release, the disassembled molecules likely retain structural information that favors fibril reformation. To deconstruct the role of the different regions of aS sequence in this process, we measured the high-pressure dissociation of amyloids formed by covalent chimeric dimers of aS (syn-syn) and by the aS deletion mutant that lacks the C-terminus, i.e., aS (1-99). The results allowed us to single out the role of dimerization and that of the C-terminus in the complete maturation of fibrillar aS. Copyright © 2017 Biophysical Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Assembly of Collagen Matrices as a Phase Transition Revealed by Structural and Rheologic Studies

    Forgacs, Gabor; Newman, Stuart A.; Hinner, Bernhard; Maier, Christian W.; Sackmann, Erich

    2003-01-01

    We have studied the structural and viscoelastic properties of assembling networks of the extracellular matrix protein type-I collagen by means of phase contrast microscopy and rotating disk rheometry. The initial stage of the assembly is a nucleation process of collagen monomers associating to randomly distributed branched clusters with extensions of several microns. Eventually a sol-gel transition takes place, which is due to the interconnection of these clusters. We analyzed this transition...

  19. Traveling salesman problems with PageRank Distance on complex networks reveal community structure

    Jiang, Zhongzhou; Liu, Jing; Wang, Shuai

    2016-12-01

    In this paper, we propose a new algorithm for community detection problems (CDPs) based on traveling salesman problems (TSPs), labeled as TSP-CDA. Since TSPs need to find a tour with minimum cost, cities close to each other are usually clustered in the tour. This inspired us to model CDPs as TSPs by taking each vertex as a city. Then, in the final tour, the vertices in the same community tend to cluster together, and the community structure can be obtained by cutting the tour into a couple of paths. There are two challenges. The first is to define a suitable distance between each pair of vertices which can reflect the probability that they belong to the same community. The second is to design a suitable strategy to cut the final tour into paths which can form communities. In TSP-CDA, we deal with these two challenges by defining a PageRank Distance and an automatic threshold-based cutting strategy. The PageRank Distance is designed with the intrinsic properties of CDPs in mind, and can be calculated efficiently. In the experiments, benchmark networks with 1000-10,000 nodes and varying structures are used to test the performance of TSP-CDA. A comparison is also made between TSP-CDA and two well-established community detection algorithms. The results show that TSP-CDA can find accurate community structure efficiently and outperforms the two existing algorithms.

  20. Superresolution imaging reveals structurally distinct periodic patterns of chromatin along pachytene chromosomes

    Fournier, David; Redl, Stefan; Best, Gerrit; Borsos, Máté; Tiwari, Vijay K.; Tachibana-Konwalski, Kikuë; Ketting, René F.; Parekh, Sapun H.; Cremer, Christoph; Birk, Udo J.

    2015-01-01

    During meiosis, homologous chromosomes associate to form the synaptonemal complex (SC), a structure essential for fertility. Information about the epigenetic features of chromatin within this structure at the level of superresolution microscopy is largely lacking. We combined single-molecule localization microscopy (SMLM) with quantitative analytical methods to describe the epigenetic landscape of meiotic chromosomes at the pachytene stage in mouse oocytes. DNA is found to be nonrandomly distributed along the length of the SC in condensed clusters. Periodic clusters of repressive chromatin [trimethylation of histone H3 at lysine (Lys) 27 (H3K27me3)] are found at 500-nm intervals along the SC, whereas one of the ends of the SC displays a large and dense cluster of centromeric histone mark [trimethylation of histone H3 at Lys 9 (H3K9me3)]. Chromatin associated with active transcription [trimethylation of histone H3 at Lys 4 (H3K4me3)] is arranged in a radial hair-like loop pattern emerging laterally from the SC. These loops seem to be punctuated with small clusters of H3K4me3 with an average spread larger than their periodicity. Our findings indicate that the nanoscale structure of the pachytene chromosomes is constrained by periodic patterns of chromatin marks, whose function in recombination and higher order genome organization is yet to be elucidated. PMID:26561583

  1. Structures of human folate receptors reveal biological trafficking states and diversity in folate and antifolate recognition.

    Wibowo, Ardian S; Singh, Mirage; Reeder, Kristen M; Carter, Joshua J; Kovach, Alexander R; Meng, Wuyi; Ratnam, Manohar; Zhang, Faming; Dann, Charles E

    2013-09-17

    Antifolates, folate analogs that inhibit vitamin B9 (folic acid)-using cellular enzymes, have been used over several decades for the treatment of cancer and inflammatory diseases. Cellular uptake of the antifolates in clinical use occurs primarily via widely expressed facilitative membrane transporters. More recently, human folate receptors (FRs), high affinity receptors that transport folate via endocytosis, have been proposed as targets for the specific delivery of new classes of antifolates or folate conjugates to tumors or sites of inflammation. The development of specific, FR-targeted antifolates would be accelerated if additional biophysical data, particularly structural models of the receptors, were available. Here we describe six distinct crystallographic models that provide insight into biological trafficking of FRs and distinct binding modes of folate and antifolates to these receptors. From comparison of the structures, we delineate discrete structural conformations representative of key stages in the endocytic trafficking of FRs and propose models for pH-dependent conformational changes. Additionally, we describe the molecular details of human FR in complex with three clinically prevalent antifolates, pemetrexed (also Alimta), aminopterin, and methotrexate. On the whole, our data form the basis for rapid design and implementation of unique, FR-targeted, folate-based drugs for the treatment of cancer and inflammatory diseases.

  2. Revealing New Structural Insights from Surfactant Micelles through DLS, Microrheology and Raman Spectroscopy

    Samiul Amin

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The correlation between molecular changes and microstructural evolution of rheological properties has been demonstrated for the first time in a mixed anionic/zwitterionic surfactant-based wormlike micellar system. Utilizing a novel combination of DLS-microrheology and Raman Spectroscopy, the effect of electrostatic screening on these properties of anionic (SLES and zwitterionic (CapB surfactant mixtures was studied by modulating the NaCl concentration. As Raman Spectroscopy delivers information about the molecular structure and DLS-microrheology characterizes viscoelastic properties, the combination of data delivered allows for a deeper understanding of the molecular changes underlying the viscoelastic ones. The high frequency viscoelastic response obtained through DLS-microrheology has shown the persistence of the Maxwell fluid response for low viscosity solutions at high NaCl concentrations. The intensity of the Raman band at 170 cm−1 exhibits very strong correlation with the viscosity variation. As this Raman band is assigned to hydrogen bonding, its variation with NaCl concentration additionally indicates differences in water structuring due to potential microstructural differences at low and high NaCl concentrations. The microstructural differences at low and high NaCl concentrations are further corroborated by persistence of a slow mode at the higher NaCl concentrations as seen through DLS measurements. The study illustrates the utility of the combined DLS, DLS-optical microrheology and Raman Spectroscopy in providing new molecular structural insights into the self-assembly process in complex fluids.

  3. Thermal annealing of carbon nanotubes reveals a toxicological impact of the structural defects

    Figarol, Agathe, E-mail: figarol@emse.fr [Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines, SPIN-EMSE, CNRS: UMR 5307, LGF (France); Pourchez, Jérémie, E-mail: pourchez@emse.fr [Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines, CIS-EMSE, EA 4624, SFR IFRESIS, LINA (France); Boudard, Delphine [Université Jean Monnet Saint-Etienne, EA 4624, SFR IFRESIS, LINA (France); Forest, Valérie [Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines, CIS-EMSE, EA 4624, SFR IFRESIS, LINA (France); Berhanu, Sarah [Armines - Mines ParisTech, Centre des Matériaux, CNRS UMR 7633 (France); Tulliani, Jean-Marc [Politecnico di Torino, Department of Applied Science and Technology (Italy); Lecompte, Jean-Pierre [Centre Européen de la céramique CNRS: UMR 7315, SPCTS (France); Cottier, Michèle [Université Jean Monnet Saint-Etienne, EA 4624, SFR IFRESIS, LINA (France); Bernache-Assollant, Didier [Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines, CIS-EMSE, EA 4624, SFR IFRESIS, LINA (France); Grosseau, Philippe [Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines, SPIN-EMSE, CNRS: UMR 5307, LGF (France)

    2015-04-15

    The biological response to pristine and annealed multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNT) was assessed on murine macrophages (RAW 264.7). First, the physicochemical features of the as-produced MWCNT and annealed at 2125 °C for 1 h were fully characterized. A decrease in structural defects, hydrophobicity and catalytic impurities was detected after annealing. Thereafter, their impact on cytotoxicity, oxidative stress, and pro-inflammatory response was investigated at concentrations ranging from 15 to 120 µg mL{sup −1}. No effect of the 2125 °C treatment was detected on the cytotoxicity. In contrast, the annealed carbon nanotubes showed a significant increase of the pro-inflammatory response. We assumed that this behavior was due to the reduction in structural defects that may modify the layer of adsorbed biomolecules. Surprisingly, the purification of metallic catalysts did not have any significant impact on the oxidative stress. We suggested that the structural improvements from the 2125 °C treatment can decrease the carbon nanotube scavenging capacity and thus allow a higher free radical release which may counterbalance the decrease of oxidative stress due to a lower content of metallic impurities.

  4. Microsatellites loci reveal heterozygosis and population structure in vampire bats (Desmodus rotundus) (Chiroptera: Phyllostomidae) of Mexico.

    Romero-Nava, Claudia; León-Paniagua, Livia; Ortega, Jorge

    2014-06-01

    A limited number of studies have focused on the population genetic structure of vampire bats (Desmous rotundus) in America. This medium-sized bat is distributed in tropical areas of the continent with high prevalence in forested livestock areas. The aim of this work was to characterize the vampire population structure and their genetic differentiation. For this, we followed standard methods by which live vampires (caught by mist-netting) and preserved material from scientific collections, were obtained for a total of 15 different locations, ranging from Chihuahua (North) to Quintana Roo (Southeast). Tissue samples were obtained from both live and collected animals, and the genetic differentiation, within and among localities, was assessed by the use of seven microsatellite loci. Our results showed that all loci were polymorphic and no private alleles were detected. High levels of heterozygosis were detected when the proportion of alleles in each locus were compared. Pairwise (ST) and R(ST) detected significant genetic differentiation among individuals from different localities. Our population structure results indicate the presence of eleven clusters, with a high percentage of assigned individuals to some specific collecting site.

  5. Mass spectrometry footprinting reveals the structural rearrangements of cyanobacterial orange carotenoid protein upon light activation

    Liu, Haijun [Washington University; Zhang, Hao [Washington University; King, Jeremy D. [Washington University; Wolf, Nathan R. [Washington University; Prado, Mindy [Washington University; Gross, Michael L. [Washington University; Blankenship, Robert E. [Washington University

    2014-12-01

    The orange carotenoid protein (OCP), a member of the family of blue light photoactive proteins, is required for efficient photoprotection in many cyanobacteria. Photoexcitation of the carotenoid in the OCP results in structural changes within the chromophore and the protein to give an active red form of OCP that is required for phycobilisome binding and consequent fluorescence quenching. We characterized the light-dependent structural changes by mass spectrometry-based carboxyl footprinting and found that an α helix in the N-terminal extension of OCP plays a key role in this photoactivation process. Although this helix is located on and associates with the outside of the β-sheet core in the C-terminal domain of OCP in the dark, photoinduced changes in the domain structure disrupt this interaction. We propose that this mechanism couples light-dependent carotenoid conformational changes to global protein conformational dynamics in favor of functional phycobilisome binding, and is an essential part of the OCP photocycle.

  6. Light-harvesting features revealed by the structure of plant Photosystem I

    Ben-Shem, A; Nelson, N; 10.1023/B:PRES.0000036881.23512.42

    2004-01-01

    Oxygenic photosynthesis is driven by two multi-subunit membrane protein complexes, Photosystem I and Photosystem II. In plants and green algae, both complexes are composed of two moieties: a reaction center (RC), where light-induced charge translocation occurs, and a peripheral antenna that absorbs light and funnels its energy to the reaction center. The peripheral antenna of PS I (LHC I) is composed of four gene products (Lhca 1-4) that are unique among the chlorophyll a/b binding proteins in their pronounced long-wavelength absorbance and in their assembly into dimers. The recently determined structure of plant Photosystem I provides the first relatively high- resolution structural model of a super-complex containing a reaction center and its peripheral antenna. We describe some of the structural features responsible for the unique properties of LHC I and discuss the advantages of the particular LHC I dimerization mode over monomeric or trimeric forms. In addition, we delineate some of the interactions betw...

  7. Microsatellites loci reveal heterozygosis and population structure in vampire bats (Desmodus rotundus (Chiroptera: Phyllostomidae of Mexico

    Claudia Romero-Nava

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available A limited number of studies have focused on the population genetic structure of vampire bats (Desmodus rotundus in America. This medium-sized bat is distributed in tropical areas of the continent with high prevalence in forested livestock areas. The aim of this work was to characterize the vampire population structure and their genetic differentiation. For this, we followed standard methods by which live vampires (caught by mist-netting and preserved material from scientific collections, were obtained for a total of 15 different locations, ranging from Chihuahua (North to Quintana Roo (Southeast. Tissue samples were obtained from both live and collected animals, and the genetic differentiation, within and among localities, was assessed by the use of seven microsatellite loci. Our results showed that all loci were polymorphic and no private alleles were detected. High levels of heterozygosis were detected when the proportion of alleles in each locus were compared. Pairwise F ST and R ST detected significant genetic differentiation among individuals from different localities. Our population structure results indicate the presence of eleven clusters, with a high percentage of assigned individuals to some specific collecting site. Rev. Biol. Trop. 62 (2: 659-669. Epub 2014 June 01.

  8. Structure of a Reptilian Adenovirus Reveals a Phage Tailspike Fold Stabilizing a Vertebrate Virus Capsid.

    Menéndez-Conejero, Rosa; Nguyen, Thanh H; Singh, Abhimanyu K; Condezo, Gabriela N; Marschang, Rachel E; van Raaij, Mark J; San Martín, Carmen

    2017-10-03

    Although non-human adenoviruses (AdVs) might offer solutions to problems posed by human AdVs as therapeutic vectors, little is known about their basic biology. In particular, there are no structural studies on the complete virion of any AdV with a non-mammalian host. We combine mass spectrometry, cryo-electron microscopy, and protein crystallography to characterize the composition and structure of a snake AdV (SnAdV-1, Atadenovirus genus). SnAdV-1 particles contain the genus-specific proteins LH3, p32k, and LH2, a previously unrecognized structural component. Remarkably, the cementing protein LH3 has a trimeric β helix fold typical of bacteriophage host attachment proteins. The organization of minor coat proteins differs from that in human AdVs, correlating with higher thermostability in SnAdV-1. These findings add a new piece to the intriguing puzzle of virus evolution, hint at the use of cell entry pathways different from those in human AdVs, and will help development of new, thermostable SnAdV-1-based vectors. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Structure of the Cyanuric Acid Hydrolase TrzD Reveals Product Exit Channel.

    Bera, Asim K; Aukema, Kelly G; Elias, Mikael; Wackett, Lawrence P

    2017-03-27

    Cyanuric acid hydrolases are of industrial importance because of their use in aquatic recreational facilities to remove cyanuric acid, a stabilizer for the chlorine. Degradation of excess cyanuric acid is necessary to maintain chlorine disinfection in the waters. Cyanuric acid hydrolase opens the cyanuric acid ring hydrolytically and subsequent decarboxylation produces carbon dioxide and biuret. In the present study, we report the X-ray structure of TrzD, a cyanuric acid hydrolase from Acidovorax citrulli. The crystal structure at 2.19 Å resolution shows a large displacement of the catalytic lysine (Lys163) in domain 2 away from the active site core, whereas the two other active site lysines from the two other domains are not able to move. The lysine displacement is proposed here to open up a channel for product release. Consistent with that, the structure also showed two molecules of the co-product, carbon dioxide, one in the active site and another trapped in the proposed exit channel. Previous data indicated that the domain 2 lysine residue plays a role in activating an adjacent serine residue carrying out nucleophilic attack, opening the cyanuric acid ring, and the mobile lysine guides products through the exit channel.

  10. AFLP analysis reveals a lack of phylogenetic structure within Solanum section Petota

    Vleeshouwers Vivianne GAA

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The secondary genepool of our modern cultivated potato (Solanum tuberosum L. consists of a large number of tuber-bearing wild Solanum species under Solanum section Petota. One of the major taxonomic problems in section Petota is that the series classification (as put forward by Hawkes is problematic and the boundaries of some series are unclear. In addition, the classification has received only partial cladistic support in all molecular studies carried out to date. The aim of the present study is to describe the structure present in section Petota. When possible, at least 5 accessions from each available species and 5 individual plants per accession (totally approx. 5000 plants were genotyped using over 200 AFLP markers. This resulted in the largest dataset ever constructed for Solanum section Petota. The data obtained are used to evaluate the 21 series hypothesis put forward by Hawkes and the 4 clade hypothesis of Spooner and co-workers. Results We constructed a NJ tree for 4929 genotypes. For the other analyses, due to practical reasons, a condensed dataset was created consisting of one representative genotype from each available accession. We show a NJ jackknife and a MP jackknife tree. A large part of both trees consists of a polytomy. Some structure is still visible in both trees, supported by jackknife values above 69. We use these branches with >69 jackknife support in the NJ jackknife tree as a basis for informal species groups. The informal species groups recognized are: Mexican diploids, Acaulia, Iopetala, Longipedicellata, polyploid Conicibaccata, diploid Conicibaccata, Circaeifolia, diploid Piurana and tetraploid Piurana. Conclusion Most of the series that Hawkes and his predecessors designated can not be accepted as natural groups, based on our study. Neither do we find proof for the 4 clades proposed by Spooner and co-workers. A few species groups have high support and their inner structure displays also

  11. Atomistic structural ensemble refinement reveals non-native structure stabilizes a sub-millisecond folding intermediate of CheY

    Shi, Jade; Schwantes, Christian; Bilsel, Osman

    2017-01-01

    The dynamics of globular proteins can be described in terms of transitions between a folded native state and less-populated intermediates, or excited states, which can play critical roles in both protein folding and function. Excited states are by definition transient species, and therefore are difficult to characterize using current experimental techniques. We report an atomistic model of the excited state ensemble of a stabilized mutant of an extensively studied flavodoxin fold protein CheY. We employed a hybrid simulation and experimental approach in which an aggregate 42 milliseconds of all-atom molecular dynamics were used as an informative prior for the structure of the excited state ensemble. The resulting prior was then refined against small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) data employing an established method (EROS). The most striking feature of the resulting excited state ensemble was an unstructured N-terminus stabilized by non-native contacts in a conformation that is topologically simpler than the native state. We then predict incisive single molecule FRET experiments, using these results, as a means of model validation. Our study demonstrates the paradigm of uniting simulation and experiment in a statistical model to study the structure of protein excited states and rationally design validating experiments.

  12. The structure of bradyzoite-specific enolase from Toxoplasma gondii reveals insights into its dual cytoplasmic and nuclear functions

    Ruan, Jiapeng [Northwestern University, 320 E. Superior Street, Morton 7-601, Chicago, IL 60611 (United States); Mouveaux, Thomas [Université Lille Nord de France, (France); Light, Samuel H.; Minasov, George; Anderson, Wayne F. [Northwestern University, 320 E. Superior Street, Morton 7-601, Chicago, IL 60611 (United States); Tomavo, Stanislas [Université Lille Nord de France, (France); Ngô, Huân M., E-mail: h-ngo@northwestern.edu [Northwestern University, 320 E. Superior Street, Morton 7-601, Chicago, IL 60611 (United States); BrainMicro LLC, 21 Pendleton Street, New Haven, CT 06511 (United States)

    2015-03-01

    The second crystal structure of a parasite protein preferentially enriched in the brain cyst of T. gondii has been solved at 2.75 Å resolution. Bradyzoite enolase 1 is reported to have differential functions as a glycolytic enzyme and a transcriptional regulator in bradyzoites. In addition to catalyzing a central step in glycolysis, enolase assumes a remarkably diverse set of secondary functions in different organisms, including transcription regulation as documented for the oncogene c-Myc promoter-binding protein 1. The apicomplexan parasite Toxoplasma gondii differentially expresses two nuclear-localized, plant-like enolases: enolase 1 (TgENO1) in the latent bradyzoite cyst stage and enolase 2 (TgENO2) in the rapidly replicative tachyzoite stage. A 2.75 Å resolution crystal structure of bradyzoite enolase 1, the second structure to be reported of a bradyzoite-specific protein in Toxoplasma, captures an open conformational state and reveals that distinctive plant-like insertions are located on surface loops. The enolase 1 structure reveals that a unique residue, Glu164, in catalytic loop 2 may account for the lower activity of this cyst-stage isozyme. Recombinant TgENO1 specifically binds to a TTTTCT DNA motif present in the cyst matrix antigen 1 (TgMAG1) gene promoter as demonstrated by gel retardation. Furthermore, direct physical interactions of both nuclear TgENO1 and TgENO2 with the TgMAG1 gene promoter are demonstrated in vivo using chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assays. Structural and biochemical studies reveal that T. gondii enolase functions are multifaceted, including the coordination of gene regulation in parasitic stage development. Enolase 1 provides a potential lead in the design of drugs against Toxoplasma brain cysts.

  13. RNA-binding domain of the A protein component of the U1 small nuclear ribonucleoprotein analyzed by NMR spectroscopy is structurally similar to ribosomal proteins

    Hoffman, D.W.; Query, C.C.; Golden, B.L.; White, S.W.; Keene, J.D.

    1991-01-01

    An RNA recognition motif (RRM) of ∼80 amino acids constitutes the core of RNA-binding domains found in a large family of proteins involved in RNA processing. The U1 RNA-binding domain of the A protein component of the human U1 small nuclear ribonucleoprotein (RNP), which encompasses the RRM sequence, was analyzed by using NMR spectroscopy. The domain of the A protein is a highly stable monomer in solution consisting of four antiparallel β-strands and two α-helices. The highly conserved RNP1 and RNP2 consensus sequences, containing residues previously suggested to be involved in nucleic acid binding, are juxtaposed in adjacent β-strands. Conserved aromatic side chains that are critical for RNA binding are clustered on the surface to the molecule adjacent to a variable loop that influences recognition of specific RNA sequences. The secondary structure and topology of the RRM are similar to those of ribosomal proteins L12 and L30, suggesting a distant evolutionary relationship between these two types of RNA-associated proteins

  14. Structural Analyses of Avocado sunblotch viroid Reveal Differences in the Folding of Plus and Minus RNA Strands

    Clémentine Delan-Forino

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Viroids are small pathogenic circular single-stranded RNAs, present in two complementary sequences, named plus and minus, in infected plant cells. A high degree of complementarities between different regions of the RNAs allows them to adopt complex structures. Since viroids are naked non-coding RNAs, interactions with host factors appear to be closely related to their structural and catalytic characteristics. Avocado sunblotch viroid (ASBVd, a member of the family Avsunviroidae, replicates via a symmetric RNA-dependant rolling-circle process, involving self-cleavage via hammerhead ribozymes. Consequently, it is assumed that ASBVd plus and minus strands adopt similar structures. Moreover, by computer analyses, a quasi-rod-like secondary structure has been predicted. Nevertheless, secondary and tertiary structures of both polarities of ASBVd remain unsolved. In this study, we analyzed the characteristic of each strand of ASBVd through biophysical analyses. We report that ASBVd transcripts of plus and minus polarities exhibit differences in electrophoretic mobility under native conditions and in thermal denaturation profiles. Subsequently, the secondary structures of plus and minus polarities of ASBVd were probed using the RNA-selective 2'-hydroxyl acylation analyzed by primer extension (SHAPE method. The models obtained show that both polarities fold into different structures. Moreover, our results suggest the existence of a kissing-loop interaction within the minus strand that may play a role in in vivo viroid life cycle.

  15. Comparative analyses of reproductive structures in harvestmen (opiliones reveal multiple transitions from courtship to precopulatory antagonism.

    Mercedes M Burns

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