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Sample records for rhodopsin molecular evolution

  1. Evolution of rhodopsin ion pumps in haloarchaea

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    Ford Doolittle W

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The type 1 (microbial rhodopsins are a diverse group of photochemically reactive proteins that display a broad yet patchy distribution among the three domains of life. Recent work indicates that this pattern is likely the result of lateral gene transfer (LGT of rhodopsin genes between major lineages, and even across domain boundaries. Within the lineage in which the microbial rhodopsins were initially discovered, the haloarchaea, a similar patchy distribution is observed. In this initial study, we assess the roles of LGT and gene loss in the evolution of haloarchaeal rhodopsin ion pump genes, using phylogenetics and comparative genomics approaches. Results Mapping presence/absence of rhodopsins onto the phylogeny of the RNA polymerase B' subunit (RpoB' of the haloarchaea supports previous notions that rhodopsins are patchily distributed. The phylogeny for the bacteriorhodopsin (BR protein revealed two discrepancies in comparison to the RpoB' marker, while the halorhodopsin (HR tree showed incongruence to both markers. Comparative analyses of bacteriorhodopsin-linked regions of five haloarchaeal genomes supported relationships observed in the BR tree, and also identified two open reading frames (ORFs that were more frequently linked to the bacteriorhodopsin gene than those genes previously shown to be important to the function and expression of BR. Conclusion The evidence presented here reveals a complex evolutionary history for the haloarchaeal rhodopsins, with both LGT and gene loss contributing to the patchy distribution of rhodopsins within this group. Similarities between the BR and RpoB' phylogenies provide supportive evidence for the presence of bacteriorhodopsin in the last common ancestor of haloarchaea. Furthermore, two loci that we have designated bacterio-opsin associated chaperone (bac and bacterio-opsin associated protein (bap are inferred to have important roles in BR biogenesis based on frequent linkage and co

  2. The molecular origin and evolution of dim-light vision in mammals.

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    Bickelmann, Constanze; Morrow, James M; Du, Jing; Schott, Ryan K; van Hazel, Ilke; Lim, Steve; Müller, Johannes; Chang, Belinda S W

    2015-11-01

    The nocturnal origin of mammals is a longstanding hypothesis that is considered instrumental for the evolution of endothermy, a potential key innovation in this successful clade. This hypothesis is primarily based on indirect anatomical inference from fossils. Here, we reconstruct the evolutionary history of rhodopsin--the vertebrate visual pigment mediating the first step in phototransduction at low-light levels--via codon-based model tests for selection, combined with gene resurrection methods that allow for the study of ancient proteins. Rhodopsin coding sequences were reconstructed for three key nodes: Amniota, Mammalia, and Theria. When expressed in vitro, all sequences generated stable visual pigments with λMAX values similar to the well-studied bovine rhodopsin. Retinal release rates of mammalian and therian ancestral rhodopsins, measured via fluorescence spectroscopy, were significantly slower than those of the amniote ancestor, indicating altered molecular function possibly related to nocturnality. Positive selection along the therian branch suggests adaptive evolution in rhodopsin concurrent with therian ecological diversification events during the Mesozoic that allowed for an exploration of the environment at varying light levels. © 2015 The Author(s). Evolution © 2015 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  3. The Activation Pathway of Human Rhodopsin in Comparison to Bovine Rhodopsin*

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    Kazmin, Roman; Rose, Alexander; Szczepek, Michal; Elgeti, Matthias; Ritter, Eglof; Piechnick, Ronny; Hofmann, Klaus Peter; Scheerer, Patrick; Hildebrand, Peter W.; Bartl, Franz J.

    2015-01-01

    Rhodopsin, the photoreceptor of rod cells, absorbs light to mediate the first step of vision by activating the G protein transducin (Gt). Several human diseases, such as retinitis pigmentosa or congenital night blindness, are linked to rhodopsin malfunctions. Most of the corresponding in vivo studies and structure-function analyses (e.g. based on protein x-ray crystallography or spectroscopy) have been carried out on murine or bovine rhodopsin. Because these rhodopsins differ at several amino acid positions from human rhodopsin, we conducted a comprehensive spectroscopic characterization of human rhodopsin in combination with molecular dynamics simulations. We show by FTIR and UV-visible difference spectroscopy that the light-induced transformations of the early photointermediates are very similar. Significant differences between the pigments appear with formation of the still inactive Meta I state and the transition to active Meta II. However, the conformation of Meta II and its activity toward the G protein are essentially the same, presumably reflecting the evolutionary pressure under which the active state has developed. Altogether, our results show that although the basic activation pathways of human and bovine rhodopsin are similar, structural deviations exist in the inactive conformation and during receptor activation, even between closely related rhodopsins. These differences between the well studied bovine or murine rhodopsins and human rhodopsin have to be taken into account when the influence of point mutations on the activation pathway of human rhodopsin are investigated using the bovine or murine rhodopsin template sequences. PMID:26105054

  4. Molecular genetics of rhodopsin and phototrans duction in the visual system of Drosophila

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    Zuker, C.; Cowman, A.; Montell, C.; Rubin, G.

    1987-01-01

    The authors have isolated the genes encoding four Drosophila visual pigments. Each of these opsins is expressed in a set of functionally and anatomically distinct photoreceptor cells of the eye. One is expressed in the six outer photoreceptor cells (R1-R6), the second in the central R8 photoreceptor cell, and the other two in the UV sensitive R7 photoreceptor cells. They have determined the structure and nucleotide sequence of each of these genes. They have used P element-mediated gene transfer to introduce the cloned structural gene for the R1-R6 opsin in the Drosophila germline and restored the ninaE mutant phenotype to wild-type. In an attempt to study the contribution of the various opsins to the specific functional properties of the different photoreceptor cell types, they have genetically engineered Drosophila lines that express R8 opsin in the R1-R6 photoreceptor cells. In collaboration with Drs. Ozaki and Pak at Purdue University, they have used oligonucleotide site-directed mutagenesis to mutate selected amino acids and regions of the rhodopsin molecule and reintroduced the mutated genes into Drosophila to analyze structure-function relationships in the rhodopsin molecule

  5. Crystallization, X-ray diffraction analysis and SIRAS/molecular-replacenent phasing of three crystal forms of Anabaena sensory rhodopsin transducer

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    Vogeley, Lutz; Luecke, Hartmut

    2006-01-01

    Crystals of Anabaena sensory rhodopsin transducer, the transducer for the cyanobacterial photosensor Anabaena sensory rhodopsin, obtained in the space groups P4, C2 and P2 1 2 1 2 1 diffract to 1.8, 2.1 and 2.0 Å, respectively. Phases for these crystal forms were obtained by SIRAS phasing using an iodide quick-soak derivative (P4) and molecular replacement (C2 and P2 1 2 1 2 1 ). Anabaena sensory rhodopsin transducer (ASRT) is a 14.7 kDa soluble signaling protein associated with the membrane-embedded light receptor Anabaena sensory rhodopsin (ASR) from Anabaena sp., a freshwater cyanobacterium. Crystals of ASRT were obtained in three different space groups, P4, C2 and P2 1 2 1 2 1 , which diffract to 1.8, 2.1 and 2.0 Å, respectively. Phases for one of these crystal forms (P4) were obtained by SIRAS phasing using an iodide quick-soak derivative and a partial model was built. Phases for the remaining crystal forms were obtained by molecular replacement using the partial model from the P4 crystal form

  6. Rhodopsin in the Dark Hot Sea: Molecular Analysis of Rhodopsin in a Snailfish, Careproctus rhodomelas, Living near the Deep-Sea Hydrothermal Vent.

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    Rie Sakata

    Full Text Available Visual systems in deep-sea fishes have been previously studied from a photobiological aspect; however, those of deep-sea fish inhabiting the hydrothermal vents are far less understood due to sampling difficulties. In this study, we analyzed the visual pigment of a deep-sea snailfish, Careproctus rhodomelas, discovered and collected only near the hydrothermal vents of oceans around Japan. Proteins were solubilized from the C. rhodomelas eyeball and subjected to spectroscopic analysis, which revealed the presence of a pigment characterized by an absorption maximum (λmax at 480 nm. Immunoblot analysis of the ocular protein showed a rhodopsin-like immunoreactivity. We also isolated a retinal cDNA encoding the entire coding sequence of putative C. rhodomelas rhodopsin (CrRh. HEK293EBNA cells were transfected with the CrRh cDNA and the proteins extracted from the cells were subjected to spectroscopic analysis. The recombinant CrRh showed the absorption maximum at 480 nm in the presence of 11-cis retinal. Comparison of the results from the eyeball extract and the recombinant CrRh strongly suggests that CrRh has an A1-based 11-cis-retinal chromophore and works as a photoreceptor in the C. rhodomelas retina, and hence that C. rhodomelas responds to dim blue light much the same as other deep-sea fishes. Because hydrothermal vent is a huge supply of viable food, C. rhodomelas likely do not need to participate diel vertical migration and may recognize the bioluminescence produced by aquatic animals living near the hydrothermal vents.

  7. Bias in phylogenetic reconstruction of vertebrate rhodopsin sequences.

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    Chang, B S; Campbell, D L

    2000-08-01

    Two spurious nodes were found in phylogenetic analyses of vertebrate rhodopsin sequences in comparison with well-established vertebrate relationships. These spurious reconstructions were well supported in bootstrap analyses and occurred independently of the method of phylogenetic analysis used (parsimony, distance, or likelihood). Use of this data set of vertebrate rhodopsin sequences allowed us to exploit established vertebrate relationships, as well as the considerable amount known about the molecular evolution of this gene, in order to identify important factors contributing to the spurious reconstructions. Simulation studies using parametric bootstrapping indicate that it is unlikely that the spurious nodes in the parsimony analyses are due to long branches or other topological effects. Rather, they appear to be due to base compositional bias at third positions, codon bias, and convergent evolution at nucleotide positions encoding the hydrophobic residues isoleucine, leucine, and valine. LogDet distance methods, as well as maximum-likelihood methods which allow for nonstationary changes in base composition, reduce but do not entirely eliminate support for the spurious resolutions. Inclusion of five additional rhodopsin sequences in the phylogenetic analyses largely corrected one of the spurious reconstructions while leaving the other unaffected. The additional sequences not only were more proximal to the corrected node, but were also found to have intermediate levels of base composition and codon bias as compared with neighboring sequences on the tree. This study shows that the spurious reconstructions can be corrected either by excluding third positions, as well as those encoding the amino acids Ile, Val, and Leu (which may not be ideal, as these sites can contain useful phylogenetic signal for other parts of the tree), or by the addition of sequences that reduce problems associated with convergent evolution.

  8. Thermal Stability of Rhodopsin and Progression of Retinitis Pigmentosa

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    Liu, Monica Yun; Liu, Jian; Mehrotra, Devi; Liu, Yuting; Guo, Ying; Baldera-Aguayo, Pedro A.; Mooney, Victoria L.; Nour, Adel M.; Yan, Elsa C. Y.

    2013-01-01

    Over 100 point mutations in the rhodopsin gene have been associated with retinitis pigmentosa (RP), a family of inherited visual disorders. Among these, we focused on characterizing the S186W mutation. We compared the thermal properties of the S186W mutant with another RP-causing mutant, D190N, and with WT rhodopsin. To assess thermal stability, we measured the rate of two thermal reactions contributing to the thermal decay of rhodopsin as follows: thermal isomerization of 11-cis-retinal and hydrolysis of the protonated Schiff base linkage between the 11-cis-retinal chromophore and opsin protein. We used UV-visible spectroscopy and HPLC to examine the kinetics of these reactions at 37 and 55 °C for WT and mutant rhodopsin purified from HEK293 cells. Compared with WT rhodopsin and the D190N mutant, the S186W mutation dramatically increases the rates of both thermal isomerization and dark state hydrolysis of the Schiff base by 1–2 orders of magnitude. The results suggest that the S186W mutant thermally destabilizes rhodopsin by disrupting a hydrogen bond network at the receptor's active site. The decrease in the thermal stability of dark state rhodopsin is likely to be associated with higher levels of dark noise that undermine the sensitivity of rhodopsin, potentially accounting for night blindness in the early stages of RP. Further studies of the thermal stability of additional pathogenic rhodopsin mutations in conjunction with clinical studies are expected to provide insight into the molecular mechanism of RP and test the correlation between rhodopsin's thermal stability and RP progression in patients. PMID:23625926

  9. Molecular outflows in protostellar evolution

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    Fukui, Y.; Iwata, T.; Mizuno, A.; Ogawa, H.; Kawabata, K.; Sugitani, K.

    1989-01-01

    Molecular outflow is an energetic mass-ejection phenomenon associated with very early stage of stellar evolution. The large kinetic energy involved in the phenomenon indicates that outflow may play an essential role in the process of star formation, particularly by extracting angular momentum. Most of the previous searches have been strongly biased toward optical or near-infrared signposts of star formation. They are not able, therefore, to provide the complete database necessary for a statistical study of the evolutionary status of molecular outflow. To overcome this difficulty, it is of vital importance to make an unbiased search of single molecular clouds for molecular outflows; here we report the final result of such a survey of the Lynds 1641 dark cloud. We show that molecular outflows are characterized by a total luminosity significantly greater than that of T Tauri stars. This indicates that molecular outflow corresponds to the main accretion phase of protostellar evolution, in which the luminosity excess is due to the gravitational energy released by dynamical mass accretion onto the protostellar core. (author)

  10. Adaptive evolution of molecular phenotypes

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    Held, Torsten; Nourmohammad, Armita; Lässig, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Molecular phenotypes link genomic information with organismic functions, fitness, and evolution. Quantitative traits are complex phenotypes that depend on multiple genomic loci. In this paper, we study the adaptive evolution of a quantitative trait under time-dependent selection, which arises from environmental changes or through fitness interactions with other co-evolving phenotypes. We analyze a model of trait evolution under mutations and genetic drift in a single-peak fitness seascape. The fitness peak performs a constrained random walk in the trait amplitude, which determines the time-dependent trait optimum in a given population. We derive analytical expressions for the distribution of the time-dependent trait divergence between populations and of the trait diversity within populations. Based on this solution, we develop a method to infer adaptive evolution of quantitative traits. Specifically, we show that the ratio of the average trait divergence and the diversity is a universal function of evolutionary time, which predicts the stabilizing strength and the driving rate of the fitness seascape. From an information-theoretic point of view, this function measures the macro-evolutionary entropy in a population ensemble, which determines the predictability of the evolutionary process. Our solution also quantifies two key characteristics of adapting populations: the cumulative fitness flux, which measures the total amount of adaptation, and the adaptive load, which is the fitness cost due to a population's lag behind the fitness peak. (paper)

  11. Bringing molecules back into molecular evolution.

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    Claus O Wilke

    Full Text Available Much molecular-evolution research is concerned with sequence analysis. Yet these sequences represent real, three-dimensional molecules with complex structure and function. Here I highlight a growing trend in the field to incorporate molecular structure and function into computational molecular-evolution work. I consider three focus areas: reconstruction and analysis of past evolutionary events, such as phylogenetic inference or methods to infer selection pressures; development of toy models and simulations to identify fundamental principles of molecular evolution; and atom-level, highly realistic computational modeling of molecular structure and function aimed at making predictions about possible future evolutionary events.

  12. Molecular evolution and the latitudinal biodiversity gradient.

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    Dowle, E J; Morgan-Richards, M; Trewick, S A

    2013-06-01

    Species density is higher in the tropics (low latitude) than in temperate regions (high latitude) resulting in a latitudinal biodiversity gradient (LBG). The LBG must be generated by differential rates of speciation and/or extinction and/or immigration among regions, but the role of each of these processes is still unclear. Recent studies examining differences in rates of molecular evolution have inferred a direct link between rate of molecular evolution and rate of speciation, and postulated these as important drivers of the LBG. Here we review the molecular genetic evidence and examine the factors that might be responsible for differences in rates of molecular evolution. Critical to this is the directionality of the relationship between speciation rates and rates of molecular evolution.

  13. Molecular evolution and thermal adaptation

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    Chen, Peiqiu

    2011-12-01

    In this thesis, we address problems in molecular evolution, thermal adaptation, and the kinetics of adaptation of bacteria and viruses to elevated environmental temperatures. We use a nearly neutral fitness model where the replication speed of an organism is proportional to the copy number of folded proteins. Our model reproduces the distribution of stabilities of natural proteins in excellent agreement with experiment. We find that species with high mutation rates tend to have less stable proteins compared to species with low mutation rate. We found that a broad distribution of protein stabilities observed in the model and in experiment is the key determinant of thermal response for viruses and bacteria. Our results explain most of the earlier experimental observations: striking asymmetry of thermal response curves, the absence of evolutionary trade-off which was expected but not found in experiments, correlation between denaturation temperature for several protein families and the Optimal Growth Temperature (OGT) of their carrier organisms, and proximity of bacterial or viral OGTs to their evolutionary temperatures. Our theory quantitatively and with high accuracy described thermal response curves for 35 bacterial species. The model also addresses the key to adaptation is in weak-link genes (WLG), which encode least thermodynamically stable essential proteins in the proteome. We observe, as in experiment, a two-stage adaptation process. The first stage is a Luria-Delbruck type of selection, whereby rare WLG alleles, whose proteins are more stable than WLG proteins of the majority of the population (either due to standing genetic variation or due to an early acquired mutation), rapidly rise to fixation. The second stage constitutes subsequent slow accumulation of mutations in an adapted population. As adaptation progresses, selection regime changes from positive to neutral: Selection coefficient of beneficial mutations scales as a negative power of number of

  14. HBV And HCV Molecular Evolution

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    Flor H. Pujol

    2007-02-01

    support and evade several selective pressures imposed by the host, like the innate immune response, the production of neutralizing antibodies and cytotoxic lymphocites. More recently, even if many drugs currently developed against HCV have not been aproved yet for use in humans, in vitro studies have allowed to identified already drug resistance mutations. As for HIV, these mutation may be resulting also in a reduction of viral fitness, and compensatory mutations have also been described, that restore at least partially the replication capacity of the mutated viruses. The extensive variability of HCV is one of the main reasons that had hampered the production of an eefective vaccine against this virus.

     

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    1. Devesa, M. & Pujol, F.H. (2007: Hepatitis B virus genetic diversity in Latin America. Virus Research: in press.

    2. Simmonds P. (2004: Genetic diversity and evolution of hepatitis C virus--15 years on. J Gen Virol 85: 3173-3188.

    3. Stumpf, M.P.H. & Pybus, O.G. (2002: Genetic diversity and models of viral evolution for the hepatitis C virus. FEMS Microbiology Letters 214: 143-152.

  15. Accelerated Evolution and Functional Divergence of the Dim Light Visual Pigment Accompanies Cichlid Colonization of Central America.

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    Hauser, Frances E; Ilves, Katriina L; Schott, Ryan K; Castiglione, Gianni M; López-Fernández, Hernán; Chang, Belinda S W

    2017-10-01

    Cichlids encompass one of the most diverse groups of fishes in South and Central America, and show extensive variation in life history, morphology, and colouration. While studies of visual system evolution in cichlids have focussed largely on the African rift lake species flocks, Neotropical cichlids offer a unique opportunity to investigate visual system evolution at broader temporal and geographic scales. South American cichlid colonization of Central America has likely promoted accelerated rates of morphological evolution in Central American lineages as they encountered reduced competition, renewed ecological opportunity, and novel aquatic habitats. To investigate whether such transitions have influenced molecular evolution of vision in Central American cichlids, we sequenced the dim-light rhodopsin gene in 101 Neotropical cichlid species, spanning the diversity of the clade. We find strong evidence for increased rates of evolution in Central American cichlid rhodopsin relative to South American lineages, and identify several sites under positive selection in rhodopsin that likely contribute to adaptation to different photic environments. We expressed a Neotropical cichlid rhodopsin protein invitro for the first time, and found that while its spectral tuning properties were characteristic of typical vertebrate rhodopsin pigments, the rate of decay of its active signalling form was much slower, consistent with dim light adaptation in other vertebrate rhodopsins. Using site-directed mutagenesis combined with spectroscopic assays, we found that a key amino acid substitution present in some Central American cichlids accelerates the rate of decay of active rhodopsin, which may mediate adaptation to clear water habitats. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  16. Evolution as a molecular cooperative phenomenon

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    Chela-Flores, J.

    1991-06-01

    We discuss an hypothesis according to which microscopic mechanisms due to cooperation, at the molecular level, may have been key factors in the evolution of life on Earth. We view our hypothesis as a natural extension to the molecular level of viewing cooperation (symbiosis) as an evolutionary driving force; this does not restrict the interpretation of the evolutionary process to be the result of slow accumulation of mutations in the DNA. Some evidence supporting this hypothesis is discussed: (a) The Salam enhancement factor. This molecular phenomenon was recently introduced in order to understand the bases of the first unifying principle of biochemistry, namely that transcription of all known genes in prokaryotes, protists, metazoan, and metaphytes are translated into L-amino acids, except for some bacterial membrane proteins. (b) The role that cooperative phenomena may have played in the origin of evolution itself, i.e., in the resolution of Sagan's ultraviolet paradox. (c) The relationship between evolution and the constraints imposed by embryonic development. This is considered from the point of view of molecular cooperative phenomena. (author). Refs

  17. Molecular clock in neutral protein evolution

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    Wilke Claus O

    2004-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A frequent observation in molecular evolution is that amino-acid substitution rates show an index of dispersion (that is, ratio of variance to mean substantially larger than one. This observation has been termed the overdispersed molecular clock. On the basis of in silico protein-evolution experiments, Bastolla and coworkers recently proposed an explanation for this observation: Proteins drift in neutral space, and can temporarily get trapped in regions of substantially reduced neutrality. In these regions, substitution rates are suppressed, which results in an overall substitution process that is not Poissonian. However, the simulation method of Bastolla et al. is representative only for cases in which the product of mutation rate μ and population size Ne is small. How the substitution process behaves when μNe is large is not known. Results Here, I study the behavior of the molecular clock in in silico protein evolution as a function of mutation rate and population size. I find that the index of dispersion decays with increasing μNe, and approaches 1 for large μNe . This observation can be explained with the selective pressure for mutational robustness, which is effective when μNe is large. This pressure keeps the population out of low-neutrality traps, and thus steadies the ticking of the molecular clock. Conclusions The molecular clock in neutral protein evolution can fall into two distinct regimes, a strongly overdispersed one for small μNe, and a mostly Poissonian one for large μNe. The former is relevant for the majority of organisms in the plant and animal kingdom, and the latter may be relevant for RNA viruses.

  18. Evolution of molecular phenotypes under stabilizing selection

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    Nourmohammad, Armita; Schiffels, Stephan; Lässig, Michael

    2013-01-01

    Molecular phenotypes are important links between genomic information and organismic functions, fitness, and evolution. Complex phenotypes, which are also called quantitative traits, often depend on multiple genomic loci. Their evolution builds on genome evolution in a complicated way, which involves selection, genetic drift, mutations and recombination. Here we develop a coarse-grained evolutionary statistics for phenotypes, which decouples from details of the underlying genotypes. We derive approximate evolution equations for the distribution of phenotype values within and across populations. This dynamics covers evolutionary processes at high and low recombination rates, that is, it applies to sexual and asexual populations. In a fitness landscape with a single optimal phenotype value, the phenotypic diversity within populations and the divergence between populations reach evolutionary equilibria, which describe stabilizing selection. We compute the equilibrium distributions of both quantities analytically and we show that the ratio of mean divergence and diversity depends on the strength of selection in a universal way: it is largely independent of the phenotype’s genomic encoding and of the recombination rate. This establishes a new method for the inference of selection on molecular phenotypes beyond the genome level. We discuss the implications of our findings for the predictability of evolutionary processes. (paper)

  19. Microbial and viral-like rhodopsins present in coastal marine sediments from four polar and subpolar regions

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    López, José L.; Golemba, Marcelo; Hernández, Edgardo; Lozada, Mariana; Dionisi, Hebe; Jansson, Janet K.; Carroll, Jolynn; Lundgren, Leif; Sjöling, Sara; Mac Cormack, Walter P.; Sobecky, Patricia

    2016-11-03

    Rhodopsins are broadly distributed. In this work, we analyzed 23 metagenomes corresponding to marine sediment samples from four regions that share cold climate conditions (Norway; Sweden; Argentina and Antarctica). In order to investigate the genes evolution of viral rhodopsins, an initial set of 6224 bacterial rhodopsin sequences according to COG5524 were retrieved from the 23 metagenomes. After selection by the presence of transmembrane domains and alignment, 123 viral (51) and non-viral (72) sequences (>50 amino acids) were finally included in further analysis. Viral rhodopsin genes were homologs of Phaeocystis globosa virus and Organic lake Phycodnavirus. Non-viral microbial rhodopsin genes were ascribed to Bacteroidetes, Planctomycetes, Firmicutes, Actinobacteria, Cyanobacteria, Proteobacteria, Deinococcus-Thermus and Cryptophyta and Fungi. A rescreening using Blastp, using as queries the viral sequences previously described, retrieved 30 sequences (>100 amino acids). Phylogeographic analysis revealed a geographical clustering of the sequences affiliated to the viral group. This clustering was not observed for the microbial non-viral sequences. The phylogenetic reconstruction allowed us to propose the existence of a putative ancestor of viral rhodopsin genes related to Actinobacteria and Chloroflexi. This is the first report about the existence of a phylogeographic association of the viral rhodopsin sequences from marine sediments.

  20. Digoxin-induced retinal degeneration depends on rhodopsin.

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    Landfried, Britta; Samardzija, Marijana; Barben, Maya; Schori, Christian; Klee, Katrin; Storti, Federica; Grimm, Christian

    2017-03-16

    Na,K-ATPases are energy consuming ion pumps that are required for maintaining ion homeostasis in most cells. In the retina, Na,K-ATPases are especially important to sustain the dark current in photoreceptor cells needed for rapid hyperpolarization of rods and cones in light. Cardiac glycosides like digoxin inhibit the activity of Na,K-ATPases by targeting their catalytic alpha subunits. This leads to a disturbed ion balance, which can affect cellular function and survival. Here we show that the treatment of wild-type mice with digoxin leads to severe retinal degeneration and loss of vision. Digoxin induced cell death specifically in photoreceptor cells with no or only minor effects in other retinal cell types. Photoreceptor-specific cytotoxicity depended on the presence of bleachable rhodopsin. Photoreceptors of Rpe65 knockouts, which have no measurable rhodopsin and photoreceptors of Rpe65 R91W mice that have treatment. Similarly, cones in the all-cone retina of Nrl knockout mice were also not affected. Digoxin induced expression of several genes involved in stress signaling and inflammation. It also activated proteins such as ERK1/2, AKT, STAT1, STAT3 and CASP1 during a period of up to 10 days after treatment. Activation of signaling genes and proteins, as well as the dependency on bleachable rhodopsin resembles mechanisms of light-induced photoreceptor degeneration. Digoxin-mediated photoreceptor cell death may thus be used as an inducible model system to study molecular mechanisms of retinal degeneration.

  1. Amino acid properties conserved in molecular evolution.

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    Witold R Rudnicki

    Full Text Available That amino acid properties are responsible for the way protein molecules evolve is natural and is also reasonably well supported both by the structure of the genetic code and, to a large extent, by the experimental measures of the amino acid similarity. Nevertheless, there remains a significant gap between observed similarity matrices and their reconstructions from amino acid properties. Therefore, we introduce a simple theoretical model of amino acid similarity matrices, which allows splitting the matrix into two parts - one that depends only on mutabilities of amino acids and another that depends on pairwise similarities between them. Then the new synthetic amino acid properties are derived from the pairwise similarities and used to reconstruct similarity matrices covering a wide range of information entropies. Our model allows us to explain up to 94% of the variability in the BLOSUM family of the amino acids similarity matrices in terms of amino acid properties. The new properties derived from amino acid similarity matrices correlate highly with properties known to be important for molecular evolution such as hydrophobicity, size, shape and charge of amino acids. This result closes the gap in our understanding of the influence of amino acids on evolution at the molecular level. The methods were applied to the single family of similarity matrices used often in general sequence homology searches, but it is general and can be used also for more specific matrices. The new synthetic properties can be used in analyzes of protein sequences in various biological applications.

  2. Thermal force approach to molecular evolution.

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    Braun, Dieter; Libchaber, Albert

    2004-06-01

    Recent experiments are discussed where temperature gradients across mesoscopic pores are shown to provide essential mechanisms for autonomous molecular evolution. On the one hand, laminar thermal convection can drive DNA replication as the molecules are continuously cycled between hot and cold regions of a chamber. On the other hand, thermophoresis can accumulate charged biopolymers in similar convection settings. The experiments show that temperature differences analogous to those across porous rocks present a robust nonequilibrium boundary condition to feed the replication and accumulation of evolving molecules. It is speculated that similar nonequilibrium conditions near porous submarine hydrothermal mounds could have triggered the origin of life. In such a scenario, the encapsulation of cells with membranes would be a later development. It is expected that detailed studies of mesoscopic boundary conditions under nonequilibrium conditions will reveal new connecting pieces in the fascinating puzzle of the origins of life.

  3. Molecular epidemiology and evolution of fish Novirhabdoviruses

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    Kurath, Gael

    2014-01-01

    The genus Novirhabdoviridae contains several of the important rhabdoviruses that infect fish hosts. There are four established virus species: Infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus (IHNV), Viral hemorrhagic septicemia virus (VHSV), Hirame rhabdovirus(HIRRV), and Snakehead rhabdovirus (SHRV). Viruses of these species vary in host and geographic range, and they have all been studied at the molecular and genomic level. As globally significant pathogens of cultured fish, IHNV and VHSV have been particularly well studied in terms of molecular epidemiology and evolution. Phylogenic analyses of hundreds of field isolates have defined five major genogroups of IHNV and four major genotypes of VHSV worldwide. These phylogenies are informed by the known histories of IHNV and VHSV, each involving a series of viral emergence events that are sometimes associated with host switches, most often into cultured rainbow trout. In general, IHNV has relatively low genetic diversity and a narrow host range, and has been spread from its endemic source in North American to Europe and Asia due to aquaculture activities. In contrast, VHSV has broad host range and high genetic diversity, and the source of emergence events is virus in widespread marine fish reservoirs in the northern Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Common mechanisms of emergence and host switch events include use of raw feed, proximity to wild fish reservoirs of virus, and geographic translocations of virus or naive fish hosts associated with aquaculture.

  4. The rhodopsin-transducin complex houses two distinct rhodopsin molecules.

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    Jastrzebska, Beata; Ringler, Philippe; Palczewski, Krzysztof; Engel, Andreas

    2013-05-01

    Upon illumination the visual receptor rhodopsin (Rho) transitions to the activated form Rho(∗), which binds the heterotrimeric G protein, transducin (Gt) causing GDP to GTP exchange and Gt dissociation. Using succinylated concanavalin A (sConA) as a probe, we visualized native Rho dimers solubilized in 1mM n-dodecyl-β-d-maltoside (DDM) and Rho monomers in 5mM DDM. By nucleotide depletion and affinity chromatography together with crosslinking and size exclusion chromatography, we trapped and purified nucleotide-free Rho(∗)·Gt and sConA-Rho(∗)·Gt complexes kept in solution by either DDM or lauryl-maltose-neopentyl-glycol (LMNG). The 3 D envelope calculated from projections of negatively stained Rho(∗)·Gt-LMNG complexes accommodated two Rho molecules, one Gt heterotrimer and a detergent belt. Visualization of triple sConA-Rho(∗)·Gt complexes unequivocally demonstrated a pentameric assembly of the Rho(∗)·Gt complex in which the photoactivated Rho(∗) dimer serves as a platform for binding the Gt heterotrimer. Importantly, individual monomers of the Rho(∗) dimer in the heteropentameric complex exhibited different capabilities for regeneration with either 11-cis or 9-cis-retinal. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. On the origins of arrestin and rhodopsin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alvarez Carlos E

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background G protein coupled receptors (GPCRs are the most numerous proteins in mammalian genomes, and the most common targets of clinical drugs. However, their evolution remains enigmatic. GPCRs are intimately associated with trimeric G proteins, G protein receptor kinases, and arrestins. We conducted phylogenetic studies to reconstruct the history of arrestins. Those findings, in turn, led us to investigate the origin of the photosensory GPCR rhodopsin. Results We found that the arrestin clan is comprised of the Spo0M protein family in archaea and bacteria, and the arrestin and Vps26 families in eukaryotes. The previously known animal arrestins are members of the visual/beta subfamily, which branched from the founding "alpha" arrestins relatively recently. Curiously, we identified both the oldest visual/beta arrestin and opsin genes in Cnidaria (but not in sponges. The arrestin clan has 14 human members: 6 alphas, 4 visual/betas, and 4 Vps26 genes. Others recently showed that the 3D structure of mammalian Vps26 and the biochemical function of the yeast alpha arrestin PalF are similar to those of beta arrestins. We note that only alpha arrestins have PY motifs (known to bind WW domains in their C-terminal tails, and only visual/betas have helix I in the Arrestin N domain. Conclusion We identified ciliary opsins in Cnidaria and propose this subfamily is ancestral to all previously known animal opsins. That finding is consistent with Darwin's theory that eyes evolved once, and lends some support to Parker's hypothesis that vision triggered the Cambrian explosion of life forms. Our arrestin findings have implications on the evolution of GPCR signaling, and on the biological roles of human alpha arrestins.

  6. Evolution of Vision

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ostrovsky, Mikhail

    The evolution of photoreception, giving rise to eye, offers a kaleidoscopic view on selection acting at both the organ and molecular levels. The molecular level is mainly considered in the lecture. The greatest progress to date has been made in relation to the opsin visual pigments. Opsins appeared before eyes did. Two- and three-dimensional organization for rhodopsin in the rod outer segment disk membrane, as well as molecular mechanisms of visual pigments spectral tuning, photoisomerization and also opsin as a G-protein coupled receptor are considered. Molecular mechanisms of visual pigments spectral tuning, namely switching of chromophore (physiological time scale) and amino acid changes in the chromophore site of opsin (evolutionary time scale) is considered in the lecture. Photoisomerization of rhodopsin chromophore, 11-cis retinal is the only photochemical reaction in vision. The reaction is extemely fast (less that 200 fs) and high efficient (. is 0.65). The rhodopsin photolysis and kinetics of the earlier products appearance, photo- and bathorhodopsin, is considered. It is known that light is not only a carrier of information, but also a risk factor of damage to the eye. This photobiological paradox of vision is mainly due to the nature of rhodopsin chromophore. Photooxidation is the base of the paradox. All factors present in the phototrceptor cells to initiate free-radical photooxidation: photosensitizers, oxygen and substrates of oxidation: lipids and proteins (opsin). That is why photoprotective system of the eye structures appeared in the course of evolution. Three lines of protective system to prevent light damage to the retina and retina pigment epithelium is known: permanent renewal of rod and cone outer segment, powerful antioxidant system and optical media as cut-off filters where the lens is a key component. The molecular mechanisms of light damage to the eye and photoprotective system of the eye is considered in the lecture. The molecular

  7. Molecular musings in microbial ecology and evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Case, Rebecca J; Boucher, Yan

    2011-11-10

    A few major discoveries have influenced how ecologists and evolutionists study microbes. Here, in the format of an interview, we answer questions that directly relate to how these discoveries are perceived in these two branches of microbiology, and how they have impacted on both scientific thinking and methodology.The first question is "What has been the influence of the 'Universal Tree of Life' based on molecular markers?" For evolutionists, the tree was a tool to understand the past of known (cultured) organisms, mapping the invention of various physiologies on the evolutionary history of microbes. For ecologists the tree was a guide to discover the current diversity of unknown (uncultured) organisms, without much knowledge of their physiology.The second question we ask is "What was the impact of discovering frequent lateral gene transfer among microbes?" In evolutionary microbiology, frequent lateral gene transfer (LGT) made a simple description of relationships between organisms impossible, and for microbial ecologists, functions could not be easily linked to specific genotypes. Both fields initially resisted LGT, but methods or topics of inquiry were eventually changed in one to incorporate LGT in its theoretical models (evolution) and in the other to achieve its goals despite that phenomenon (ecology).The third and last question we ask is "What are the implications of the unexpected extent of diversity?" The variation in the extent of diversity between organisms invalidated the universality of species definitions based on molecular criteria, a major obstacle to the adaptation of models developed for the study of macroscopic eukaryotes to evolutionary microbiology. This issue has not overtly affected microbial ecology, as it had already abandoned species in favor of the more flexible operational taxonomic units. This field is nonetheless moving away from traditional methods to measure diversity, as they do not provide enough resolution to uncover what lies

  8. Allosteric behavior in the activation of transducin mediated by rhodopsin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wessling-Resnick, M.; Johnson, G.I.

    1986-01-01

    Transducin is a member of the family of regulatory GTP-binding proteins which provide a signal transduction mechanism for many cell surface receptors. These receptors act in a catalytic manner to displace GDP bound to the G protein in exchange for GTP during a process referred to as activation. The authors have studied the steady-state kinetics of the activation of transducin mediated by rhodopsin by employing the non-hydrolyzable GTP analog, [ 35 S]-GTPγS. The substrate-velocity curves display remarkable allosteric behavior with a Hill coefficient, n/sub H/ = 2. Lineweaver-Burke plots with respect to reciprocal [transducin] show curvilinearity indicative of positive cooperativity. However, a series of parallel lines are generated by plotting the linear transformation as [transducin] -2 . The double reciprocal plots with respect to [GTPγS] are a series of parallel lines. The initial rate analysis supports a double displacement catalytic mechanism for the molecular interactions between the photon receptor, G protein, and guanine nucleotides. It remains to be determined whether the positive cooperative behavior the authors observe can be assigned to the interaction of multiple transducins with rhodopsin, the presence of an allosteric effector, or hysteresis in the receptor's activity. These unique observations also provide insight into the molecular interactions of members of the family of G protein-coupled receptors

  9. Molecular phylogeny and evolution of mosquito parasitic Microsporidia (Microsporidia: Amblyosporidae)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Vossbrinck, C. R.; Andreadis, T.; Vávra, Jiří; Becnel, J. J.

    2004-01-01

    Roč. 51, č. 1 (2004), s. 88-95 ISSN 1066-5234 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z6022909 Keywords : Microsporidia * molecular phylogeny * evolution Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 1.403, year: 2004

  10. Molecular evolution and the natural history of select virus epidemics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bruhn, Christian Anders Wathne

    Molecular evolution of pathogenic viruses with RNA based genomes is most often fast enough to leave an informative genomic sequence signal within a timeframe that is relevant for the study of both recent and on-­‐going epidemics (and epizootics). The true power of molecular evolutionary methodolo...

  11. Chimeric Proton-Pumping Rhodopsins Containing the Cytoplasmic Loop of Bovine Rhodopsin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sasaki, Kengo; Yamashita, Takahiro; Yoshida, Kazuho; Inoue, Keiichi; Shichida, Yoshinori; Kandori, Hideki

    2014-01-01

    G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) transmit stimuli to intracellular signaling systems. Rhodopsin (Rh), which is a prototypical GPCR, possesses an 11-cis retinal. Photoisomerization of 11-cis to all-trans leads to structural changes in the protein of cytoplasmic loops, activating G-protein. Microbial rhodopsins are similar heptahelical membrane proteins that function as bacterial sensors, light-driven ion-pumps, or light-gated channels. They possess an all-trans retinal, and photoisomerization to 13-cis triggers structural changes in protein. Despite these similarities, there is no sequence homology between visual and microbial rhodopsins, and microbial rhodopsins do not activate G-proteins. In this study, new chimeric proton-pumping rhodopsins, proteorhodopsin (PR) and Gloeobacter rhodopsin (GR) were designed by replacing cytoplasmic loops with bovine Rh loops. Although G-protein was not activated by the PR chimeras, all 12 GR chimeras activated G-protein. The GR chimera containing the second cytoplasmic loop of bovine Rh did not activate G-protein. However, the chimera with a second and third double-loop further enhanced G-protein activation. Introduction of an E132Q mutation slowed the photocycle 30-fold and enhanced activation. The highest catalytic activity of the GR chimera was still 3,200 times lower than bovine Rh but only 64 times lower than amphioxus Go-rhodopsin. This GR chimera showed a strong absorption change of the amide-I band on a light-minus-dark difference FTIR spectrum which could represent a larger helical opening, important for G-protein activation. The light-dependent catalytic activity of this GR chimera makes it a potential optogenetic tool for enzymatic activation by light. PMID:24621599

  12. Water permeation through the internal water pathway in activated GPCR rhodopsin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katsufumi Tomobe

    Full Text Available Rhodopsin is a light-driven G-protein-coupled receptor that mediates signal transduction in eyes. Internal water molecules mediate activation of the receptor in a rhodopsin cascade reaction and contribute to conformational stability of the receptor. However, it remains unclear how internal water molecules exchange between the bulk and protein inside, in particular through a putative solvent pore on the cytoplasmic. Using all-atom molecular dynamics simulations, we identified the solvent pore on cytoplasmic side in both the Meta II state and the Opsin. On the other hand, the solvent pore does not exist in the dark-adapted rhodopsin. We revealed two characteristic narrow regions located within the solvent pore in the Meta II state. The narrow regions distinguish bulk and the internal hydration sites, one of which is adjacent to the conserved structural motif "NPxxY". Water molecules in the solvent pore diffuse by pushing or sometimes jumping a preceding water molecule due to the geometry of the solvent pore. These findings revealed a total water flux between the bulk and the protein inside in the Meta II state, and suggested that these pathways provide water molecules to the crucial sites of the activated rhodopsin.

  13. Evolution of the genus Aristolochia - Systematics, Molecular Evolution and Ecology

    OpenAIRE

    Wanke, Stefan

    2007-01-01

    Evolution of Piperales – matK gene and trnK intron sequence data reveal lineage specific resolution contrast. Piperales are one of the largest basal angiosperm orders with a nearly worldwide distribution. The order includes three species rich genera, Piper (ca. 1,000 species), Peperomia (ca. 1,500-1,700 species), and Aristolochia s. l. (ca. 500 species). Sequences of the matK gene and the non-coding trnK group II intron are analysed for a dense set of 105 taxa representing all families (excep...

  14. Feeding and the rhodopsin family G-Protein Coupled Receptors (GPCRs in nematodes and arthropods

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joao Carlos dos Reis Cardoso

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available In vertebrates, receptors of the rhodopsin G-protein coupled superfamily (GPCRs play an important role in the regulation of feeding and energy homeostasis and are activated by peptide hormones produced in the brain-gut axis. These peptides regulate appetite and energy expenditure by promoting or inhibiting food intake. Sequence and function homologues of human GPCRs involved in feeding exist in the nematode roundworm, Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans and the arthropod fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster (D. melanogaster, suggesting that the mechanisms that regulate food intake emerged early and have been conserved during metazoan radiation. Nematodes and arthropods are the most diverse and successful animal phyla on Earth. They can survive in a vast diversity of environments and have acquired distinct life styles and feeding strategies. The aim of the present review is to investigate if this diversity has affected the evolution of invertebrate GPCRs. Homologues of the C. elegans and D. melanogaster rhodopsin receptors were characterized in the genome of other nematodes and arthropods and receptor evolution compared. With the exception of bombesin receptors (BBR that are absent from nematodes, a similar gene complement was found. In arthropods, rhodopsin GPCR evolution is characterized by species-specific gene duplications and deletions and in nematodes by gene expansions in species with a free-living stage and gene deletions in representatives of obligate parasitic taxa. Based upon variation in GPCR gene number and potentially divergent functions within phyla we hypothesize that life style and feeding diversity practiced by nematodes and arthropods was one factor that contributed to rhodopsin GPCR gene evolution. Understanding how the regulation of food intake has evolved in invertebrates will contribute to the development of novel drugs to control nematodes and arthropods and the pests and diseases that use them as vectors.

  15. Feeding and the rhodopsin family g-protein coupled receptors in nematodes and arthropods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardoso, João C R; Félix, Rute C; Fonseca, Vera G; Power, Deborah M

    2012-01-01

    In vertebrates, receptors of the rhodopsin G-protein coupled superfamily (GPCRs) play an important role in the regulation of feeding and energy homeostasis and are activated by peptide hormones produced in the brain-gut axis. These peptides regulate appetite and energy expenditure by promoting or inhibiting food intake. Sequence and function homologs of human GPCRs involved in feeding exist in the nematode roundworm, Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans), and the arthropod fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster (D. melanogaster), suggesting that the mechanisms that regulate food intake emerged early and have been conserved during metazoan radiation. Nematodes and arthropods are the most diverse and successful animal phyla on Earth. They can survive in a vast diversity of environments and have acquired distinct life styles and feeding strategies. The aim of the present review is to investigate if this diversity has affected the evolution of invertebrate GPCRs. Homologs of the C. elegans and D. melanogaster rhodopsin receptors were characterized in the genome of other nematodes and arthropods and receptor evolution compared. With the exception of bombesin receptors (BBR) that are absent from nematodes, a similar gene complement was found. In arthropods, rhodopsin GPCR evolution is characterized by species-specific gene duplications and deletions and in nematodes by gene expansions in species with a free-living stage and gene deletions in representatives of obligate parasitic taxa. Based upon variation in GPCR gene number and potentially divergent functions within phyla we hypothesize that life style and feeding diversity practiced by nematodes and arthropods was one factor that contributed to rhodopsin GPCR gene evolution. Understanding how the regulation of food intake has evolved in invertebrates will contribute to the development of novel drugs to control nematodes and arthropods and the pests and diseases that use them as vectors.

  16. Rhodopsin-lipid interactions studied by NMR.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soubias, Olivier; Gawrisch, Klaus

    2013-01-01

    The biophysical properties of the lipid matrix are known to influence function of integral membrane proteins. We report on a sample preparation method for reconstitution of membrane proteins which uses porous anodic aluminum oxide (AAO) filters with 200-nm-wide pores of high density. The substrate permits formation of tubular, single membranes that line the inner surface of pores. One square centimeter of filter with a thickness of 60μm yields on the order of 500cm(2) of solid-supported single bilayer surface, sufficient for NMR studies. The tubular bilayers are free of detergent, fully hydrated, and accessible for ligands from one side of the membrane. The use of AAO filters greatly improves reproducibility of the reconstitution process such that the influence of protein on lipid order parameters can be studied with high resolution. As an example, results for the G protein-coupled receptor of class A, bovine rhodopsin, are shown. By (2)H NMR order parameter measurements, it is detected that rhodopsin insertion elastically deforms membranes near the protein. Furthermore, by (1)H saturation-transfer NMR under conditions of magic angle spinning, we demonstrate detection of preferences in interactions of rhodopsin with particular lipid species. It is assumed that function of integral membrane proteins depends on both protein-induced elastic deformations of the lipid matrix and preferences for interaction of the protein with particular lipid species in the first layer of lipids surrounding the protein. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. First cytoplasmic loop of glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor can function at the third cytoplasmic loop position of rhodopsin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamashita, Takahiro; Tose, Koji; Shichida, Yoshinori

    2008-01-01

    G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are classified into several families based on their amino acid sequences. In family 1, GPCRs such as rhodopsin and adrenergic receptor, the structure-function relationship has been extensively investigated to demonstrate that exposure of the third cytoplasmic loop is essential for selective G protein activation. In contrast, much less is known about other families. Here we prepared chimeric mutants between Gt-coupled rhodopsin and Gi/Go- and Gs-coupled glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor of family 2 and tried to identify the loop region that functions at the third cytoplasmic loop position of rhodopsin. We succeeded in expressing a mutant having the first cytoplasmic loop of GLP-1 receptor and found that this mutant activated Gi and Go efficiently but did not activate Gt. Moreover, the rhodopsin mutant having the first loop of Gs-coupled secretin receptor of family 2 decreased the Gi and Go activation efficiencies. Therefore, the first loop of GLP-1 receptor would share a similar role to the third loop of rhodopsin in G protein activation. This result strongly suggested that different families of GPCRs have maintained molecular architectures of their ancestral types to generate a common mechanism, namely exposure of the cytoplasmic loop, to activate peripheral G protein.

  18. Molecular evolution, intracellular organization, and the quinary structure of proteins.

    OpenAIRE

    McConkey, E H

    1982-01-01

    High-resolution two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis shows that at least half of 370 denatured polypeptides from hamster cells and human cells are indistinguishable in terms of isoelectric points and molecular weights. Molecular evolution may have been more conservative for this set of proteins than sequence studies on soluble proteins have implied. This may be a consequence of complexities of intracellular organization and the numerous macromolecular interactions in which most ...

  19. Molecular basis of the evolution of sex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bernstein, H.; Hopf, F.A.; Michod, R.E.

    1987-01-01

    In this review, the authors present evidence for a hypothesis that the primary benefit of sexual reproduction is repair of DNA and masking of mutations, as opposed to the traditional view that sexual reproduction is an adaptation for producing genetic variation through allelic recombination. The two fundamental aspects of sex, recombination and outcrossing, are adaptive responses to the two major sources of noise in transmitting genetic information, DNA damage and replication errors. The authors refer to this view as the repair hypothesis, and review types of DNA damage that occur in various organisms. In dealing with damage, recombination produces a form of informational noise, allelic recombination, as a by-product. Recombinational repair is the only repair process known which can overcome double-strand damages in DNA. The authors provide a rationale for their theory of the origin and evolution of sex explained as a continuum by the repair hypothesis. Alternate theories are also described

  20. The Jukes-Cantor Model of Molecular Evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erickson, Keith

    2010-01-01

    The material in this module introduces students to some of the mathematical tools used to examine molecular evolution. This topic is standard fare in many mathematical biology or bioinformatics classes, but could also be suitable for classes in linear algebra or probability. While coursework in matrix algebra, Markov processes, Monte Carlo…

  1. Evidence of microbial rhodopsins in Antarctic Dry Valley edaphic systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerrero, Leandro D; Vikram, Surendra; Makhalanyane, Thulani P; Cowan, Don A

    2017-09-01

    Microorganisms able to synthesize rhodopsins have the capacity to translocate ions through their membranes, using solar energy to generate a proton motive force. Rhodopsins are the most abundant phototrophic proteins in oceanic surface waters and are key constituents in marine bacterial ecology. However, it remains unclear how rhodopsins are used in most microorganisms. Despite their abundance in marine and fresh-water systems, the presence of functional rhodopsin systems in edaphic habitats has never been reported. Here, we show the presence of several new putative H + , Na + and Cl + pumping rhodopsins identified by metagenomic analysis of Antarctic desert hypolithic communities. Reconstruction of two Proteobacteria genomes harboring xanthorhodopsin-like proteins and one Bacteroidetes genome with a Na-pumping-like rhodopsin indicated that these bacteria were aerobic heterotrophs possessing the apparent capacity for the functional expression of rhodopsins. The existence of these protein systems in hypolithic bacteria expands the known role of rhodopsins to include terrestrial environments and suggests a possible predominant function as heterotrophic energy supply proteins, a feasible microbial adaptation to the harsh conditions prevalent in Antarctic edaphic systems. © 2017 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  2. Evolution of egg coats: linking molecular biology and ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shu, Longfei; Suter, Marc J-F; Räsänen, Katja

    2015-08-01

    One central goal of evolutionary biology is to explain how biological diversity emerges and is maintained in nature. Given the complexity of the phenotype and the multifaceted nature of inheritance, modern evolutionary ecological studies rely heavily on the use of molecular tools. Here, we show how molecular tools help to gain insight into the role of egg coats (i.e. the extracellular structures surrounding eggs and embryos) in evolutionary diversification. Egg coats are maternally derived structures that have many biological functions from mediating fertilization to protecting the embryo from environmental hazards. They show great molecular, structural and functional diversity across species, but intraspecific variability and the role of ecology in egg coat evolution have largely been overlooked. Given that much of the variation that influences egg coat function is ultimately determined by their molecular phenotype, cutting-edge molecular tools (e.g. proteomics, glycomics and transcriptomics), combined with functional assays, are needed for rigorous inferences on their evolutionary ecology. Here, we identify key research areas and highlight emerging molecular techniques that can increase our understanding of the role of egg coats in the evolution of biological diversity, from adaptation to speciation. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  3. Molecular evolution of cyclin proteins in animals and fungi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Afonnikov Dmitry A

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The passage through the cell cycle is controlled by complexes of cyclins, the regulatory units, with cyclin-dependent kinases, the catalytic units. It is also known that cyclins form several families, which differ considerably in primary structure from one eukaryotic organism to another. Despite these lines of evidence, the relationship between the evolution of cyclins and their function is an open issue. Here we present the results of our study on the molecular evolution of A-, B-, D-, E-type cyclin proteins in animals and fungi. Results We constructed phylogenetic trees for these proteins, their ancestral sequences and analyzed patterns of amino acid replacements. The analysis of infrequently fixed atypical amino acid replacements in cyclins evidenced that accelerated evolution proceeded predominantly during paralog duplication or after it in animals and fungi and that it was related to aromorphic changes in animals. It was shown also that evolutionary flexibility of cyclin function may be provided by consequential reorganization of regions on protein surface remote from CDK binding sites in animal and fungal cyclins and by functional differentiation of paralogous cyclins formed in animal evolution. Conclusions The results suggested that changes in the number and/or nature of cyclin-binding proteins may underlie the evolutionary role of the alterations in the molecular structure of cyclins and their involvement in diverse molecular-genetic events.

  4. Molecular evolution of the primate antiviral restriction factor tetherin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jun Liu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Tetherin is a recently identified antiviral restriction factor that restricts HIV-1 particle release in the absence of the HIV-1 viral protein U (Vpu. It is reminiscent of APOBEC3G and TRIM5a that also antagonize HIV. APOBEC3G and TRIM5a have been demonstrated to evolve under pervasive positive selection throughout primate evolution, supporting the red-queen hypothesis. Therefore, one naturally presumes that Tetherin also evolves under pervasive positive selection throughout primate evolution and supports the red-queen hypothesis. Here, we performed a detailed evolutionary analysis to address this presumption. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Results of non-synonymous and synonymous substitution rates reveal that Tetherin as a whole experiences neutral evolution rather than pervasive positive selection throughout primate evolution, as well as in non-primate mammal evolution. Sliding-window analyses show that the regions of the primate Tetherin that interact with viral proteins are under positive selection or relaxed purifying selection. In particular, the sites identified under positive selection generally focus on these regions, indicating that the main selective pressure acting on the primate Tetherin comes from virus infection. The branch-site model detected positive selection acting on the ancestral branch of the New World Monkey lineage, suggesting an episodic adaptive evolution. The positive selection was also found in duplicated Tetherins in ruminants. Moreover, there is no bias in the alterations of amino acids in the evolution of the primate Tetherin, implying that the primate Tetherin may retain broad spectrum of antiviral activity by maintaining structure stability. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: These results conclude that the molecular evolution of Tetherin may be attributed to the host-virus arms race, supporting the Red Queen hypothesis, and Tetherin may be in an intermediate stage in transition from neutral to pervasive

  5. The Anabaena sensory rhodopsin transducer defines a novel superfamily of prokaryotic small-molecule binding domains

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    De Souza Robson F

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The Anabaena sensory rhodopsin transducer (ASRT is a small protein that has been claimed to function as a signaling molecule downstream of the cyanobacterial sensory rhodopsin. However, orthologs of ASRT have been detected in several bacteria that lack rhodopsin, raising questions about the generality of this function. Using sequence profile searches we show that ASRT defines a novel superfamily of β-sandwich fold domains. Through contextual inference based on domain architectures and predicted operons and structural analysis we present strong evidence that these domains bind small molecules, most probably sugars. We propose that the intracellular versions like ASRT probably participate as sensors that regulate a diverse range of sugar metabolism operons or even the light sensory behavior in Anabaena by binding sugars or related metabolites. We also show that one of the extracellular versions define a predicted sugar-binding structure in a novel cell-surface lipoprotein found across actinobacteria, including several pathogens such as Tropheryma, Actinomyces and Thermobifida. The analysis of this superfamily also provides new data to investigate the evolution of carbohydrate binding modes in β-sandwich domains with very different topologies. Reviewers: This article was reviewed by M. Madan Babu and Mark A. Ragan.

  6. Chimeric microbial rhodopsins for optical activation of Gs-proteins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshida, Kazuho; Yamashita, Takahiro; Sasaki, Kengo; Inoue, Keiichi; Shichida, Yoshinori; Kandori, Hideki

    2017-01-01

    We previously showed that the chimeric proteins of microbial rhodopsins, such as light-driven proton pump bacteriorhodopsin (BR) and Gloeobacter rhodopsin (GR) that contain cytoplasmic loops of bovine rhodopsin, are able to activate Gt protein upon light absorption. These facts suggest similar protein structural changes in both the light-driven proton pump and animal rhodopsin. Here we report two trials to engineer chimeric rhodopsins, one for the inserted loop, and another for the microbial rhodopsin template. For the former, we successfully activated Gs protein by light through the incorporation of the cytoplasmic loop of β2-adrenergic receptor (β2AR). For the latter, we did not observe any G-protein activation for the light-driven sodium pump from Indibacter alkaliphilus (IndiR2) or a light-driven chloride pump halorhodopsin from Natronomonas pharaonis (NpHR), whereas the light-driven proton pump GR showed light-dependent G-protein activation. This fact suggests that a helix opening motion is common to G protein coupled receptor (GPCR) and GR, but not to IndiR2 and NpHR. Light-induced difference FTIR spectroscopy revealed similar structural changes between WT and the third loop chimera for each light-driven pump. A helical structural perturbation, which was largest for GR, was further enhanced in the chimera. We conclude that similar structural dynamics that occur on the cytoplasmic side of GPCR are needed to design chimeric microbial rhodopsins. PMID:29362703

  7. Altered phosphorylation of rhodopsin in retinal dystrophic Irish Setters

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cunnick, J.; Takemoto, D.J.; Takemoto, L.J.

    1986-01-01

    The carboxyl-terminus of rhodopsin in retinal dystrophic (rd) Irish Setters is altered near a possible phosphorylation site. To determine if this alteration affects ATP-mediated phosphorylation they compared the phosphorylation of rhodopsin from rd affected Irish Setters and normal unaffected dogs. Retinas from 8-week-old Irish Setters were phosphorylated with γ- 32 P-ATP and separated on SDS-PAGE. Compared to unaffected normal retinas, equalized for rhodopsin content, phosphorylation of rd rhodopsin was drastically reduced. When rd retinas were mixed with normal dog retinas, phosphorylation of the latter was inhibited. Inhibition also occurred when bovine retinas were mixed with rd retinas. The rd-mediated inhibition of phosphorylation was prevented by including 1mM NaF in the reaction mixture. Likewise, 1mM NaF restored phosphorylation of rd rhodopsin to normal levels. Phosphopeptide maps of rd and normal rhodopsin were identical and indicated 5 phosphopeptides present in each. Results suggest that one cause of the depressed rd rhodopsin phosphorylation is an increased phosphatase activity

  8. Retinal Ligand Mobility Explains Internal Hydration and Reconciles Active Rhodopsin Structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leioatts, Nicholas; Mertz, Blake; Martínez-Mayorga, Karina; Romo, Tod D.; Pitman, Michael C.; Feller, Scott E.; Grossfield, Alan; Brown, Michael F.

    2014-01-01

    Rhodopsin, the mammalian dim-light receptor, is one of the best-characterized G-protein-coupled receptors, a pharmaceutically important class of membrane proteins that has garnered a great deal of attention because of the recent availability of structural information. Yet the mechanism of rhodopsin activation is not fully understood. Here, we use microsecond-scale all-atom molecular dynamics simulations, validated by solid-state 2H nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, to understand the transition between the dark and metarhodopsin I (Meta I) states. Our analysis of these simulations reveals striking differences in ligand flexibility between the two states. Retinal is much more dynamic in Meta I, adopting an elongated conformation similar to that seen in the recent activelike crystal structures. Surprisingly, this elongation corresponds to both a dramatic influx of bulk water into the hydrophobic core of the protein and a concerted transition in the highly conserved Trp2656.48 residue. In addition, enhanced ligand flexibility upon light activation provides an explanation for the different retinal orientations observed in X-ray crystal structures of active rhodopsin. PMID:24328554

  9. Primary processes in photolysis of octopus rhodopsin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohtani, H; Kobayashi, T; Tsuda, M; Ebrey, T G

    1988-01-01

    The photolysis of octopus rhodopsin was studied by picosecond time-resolved spectroscopy at physiological temperature (8 degrees C) and by steady-state spectroscopy at very low temperature (10 K). Both hypsorhodopsin and bathorhodopsin were formed from a bathorhodopsin-like red-shifted intermediate "primerhodopsin," which was the primary photoproduct with our time resolution (36 ps). Though it was proposed that hypsorhodopsin is formed solely by a multiphoton process, the present results obtained by using blue light pulses (461 nm) of low intensity showed that hypsorhodopsin is formed by a single photon mechanism via thermal decay from primerhodopsin. When the excitation intensity is increased, a channel for the photochemical formation of hypsorhodopsin from primerhodopsin is opened. There are two thermal pathways leading from primerhodopsin. One process is the formation of hypsorhodopsin, which is later thermally converted to bathorhodopsin, and the other is the direct formation of bathorhodopsin from primerhodopsin. The formation efficiencies at room temperature of hypsorhodopsin and bathorhodopsin at very low excitation intensity were estimated to be larger than 0.6 and smaller than 0.4, respectively. The formation of hypsorhodopsin was also found in the early stages of the irradiation of octopus rhodopsin with weak continuous light at 10 K. However bathorhodopsin is formed three times more efficiently than hypsorhodopsin at 10 K.At physiological temperatures the formation of hypsorhodopsin in D(2)O takes place more slowly than in H(2)O. This indicates that the lifetime of primerhodopsin is decreased by H(2)O/D(2)O exchange. The rate constant for the primerhodopsin --> bathorhodopsin conversion is more sensitive than that for the primerhodopsin --> hypsorhodopsin conversion. The transformation of hypsorhodopsin to bathorhodopsin shows no deuterium effect at low temperature.

  10. Clostridium difficile infection: Evolution, phylogeny and molecular epidemiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elliott, Briony; Androga, Grace O; Knight, Daniel R; Riley, Thomas V

    2017-04-01

    Over the recent decades, Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) has emerged as a global public health threat. Despite growing attention, C. difficile remains a poorly understood pathogen, however, the exquisite sensitivity offered by next generation sequencing (NGS) technology has enabled analysis of the genome of C. difficile, giving us access to massive genomic data on factors such as virulence, evolution, and genetic relatedness within C. difficile groups. NGS has also demonstrated excellence in investigations of outbreaks and disease transmission, in both small and large-scale applications. This review summarizes the molecular epidemiology, evolution, and phylogeny of C. difficile, one of the most important pathogens worldwide in the current antibiotic resistance era. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Information Theory Broadens the Spectrum of Molecular Ecology and Evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sherwin, W B; Chao, A; Jost, L; Smouse, P E

    2017-12-01

    Information or entropy analysis of diversity is used extensively in community ecology, and has recently been exploited for prediction and analysis in molecular ecology and evolution. Information measures belong to a spectrum (or q profile) of measures whose contrasting properties provide a rich summary of diversity, including allelic richness (q=0), Shannon information (q=1), and heterozygosity (q=2). We present the merits of information measures for describing and forecasting molecular variation within and among groups, comparing forecasts with data, and evaluating underlying processes such as dispersal. Importantly, information measures directly link causal processes and divergence outcomes, have straightforward relationship to allele frequency differences (including monotonicity that q=2 lacks), and show additivity across hierarchical layers such as ecology, behaviour, cellular processes, and nongenetic inheritance. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Retinal Photoisomerization in Rhodopsin: Electrostatic and Steric Catalysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tomasello, Gaia; Altoe, Piero; Stenta, Marco; Olaso-Gonzalez, Gloria; Garavelli, Marco; Orlandi, Giorgio

    2007-01-01

    Excited state QM(CASPT2//CASSCF)/MM(GAFF) calculations, by our recently developed code COBRAMM (Computations at Bologna Relating Ab-initio and Molecular Mechanic Methods), were carried out in rhodopsin to investigate on the steric and electrostatic effects in retinal photoisomerization catalysis due to the β-ionone ring and glutammate 181 (GLU 181), respectively. The excited state photoisomerization channel has been mapped and a new christallographyc structure (2.2 Aa resolution) has been used for this purpose. Two different set-ups have been used to evaluate the electrostatic effects of GLU 181 (which is very close to the central double bond of the chromophore): the first with a neutral GLU 181 (as commonly accepted), the second with a negatively charged (i.e. deprotonated) GLU 181 (as very recent experimental findings seem to suggest). On the other hand, β-ionone ring steric effects were evaluated by calculating the photoisomerization path of a modified chromophore, where the ring double bond has been saturated. Spectroscopic properties were calculated and compared with the available experimental data

  13. The interface of protein structure, protein biophysics, and molecular evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liberles, David A; Teichmann, Sarah A; Bahar, Ivet; Bastolla, Ugo; Bloom, Jesse; Bornberg-Bauer, Erich; Colwell, Lucy J; de Koning, A P Jason; Dokholyan, Nikolay V; Echave, Julian; Elofsson, Arne; Gerloff, Dietlind L; Goldstein, Richard A; Grahnen, Johan A; Holder, Mark T; Lakner, Clemens; Lartillot, Nicholas; Lovell, Simon C; Naylor, Gavin; Perica, Tina; Pollock, David D; Pupko, Tal; Regan, Lynne; Roger, Andrew; Rubinstein, Nimrod; Shakhnovich, Eugene; Sjölander, Kimmen; Sunyaev, Shamil; Teufel, Ashley I; Thorne, Jeffrey L; Thornton, Joseph W; Weinreich, Daniel M; Whelan, Simon

    2012-01-01

    Abstract The interface of protein structural biology, protein biophysics, molecular evolution, and molecular population genetics forms the foundations for a mechanistic understanding of many aspects of protein biochemistry. Current efforts in interdisciplinary protein modeling are in their infancy and the state-of-the art of such models is described. Beyond the relationship between amino acid substitution and static protein structure, protein function, and corresponding organismal fitness, other considerations are also discussed. More complex mutational processes such as insertion and deletion and domain rearrangements and even circular permutations should be evaluated. The role of intrinsically disordered proteins is still controversial, but may be increasingly important to consider. Protein geometry and protein dynamics as a deviation from static considerations of protein structure are also important. Protein expression level is known to be a major determinant of evolutionary rate and several considerations including selection at the mRNA level and the role of interaction specificity are discussed. Lastly, the relationship between modeling and needed high-throughput experimental data as well as experimental examination of protein evolution using ancestral sequence resurrection and in vitro biochemistry are presented, towards an aim of ultimately generating better models for biological inference and prediction. PMID:22528593

  14. Bayesian semiparametric regression models to characterize molecular evolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Datta Saheli

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Statistical models and methods that associate changes in the physicochemical properties of amino acids with natural selection at the molecular level typically do not take into account the correlations between such properties. We propose a Bayesian hierarchical regression model with a generalization of the Dirichlet process prior on the distribution of the regression coefficients that describes the relationship between the changes in amino acid distances and natural selection in protein-coding DNA sequence alignments. Results The Bayesian semiparametric approach is illustrated with simulated data and the abalone lysin sperm data. Our method identifies groups of properties which, for this particular dataset, have a similar effect on evolution. The model also provides nonparametric site-specific estimates for the strength of conservation of these properties. Conclusions The model described here is distinguished by its ability to handle a large number of amino acid properties simultaneously, while taking into account that such data can be correlated. The multi-level clustering ability of the model allows for appealing interpretations of the results in terms of properties that are roughly equivalent from the standpoint of molecular evolution.

  15. Molecular evolution of a novel family of putative calcium transporters.

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    Didier Demaegd

    Full Text Available The UPF0016 family is a group of uncharacterized membrane proteins, well conserved through evolution and defined by the presence of one or two copies of an E-Φ-G-D-(KR-(ST consensus motif. Our previous results have shown that two members of this family, the human TMEM165 and the budding yeast Gdt1p, are functionally related and might form a new group of cation/Ca2+ exchangers. Most members of the family are made of two homologous clusters of three transmembrane spans, separated by a central loop and assembled with an opposite orientation in the membrane. However, some bacterial members of the family have only one cluster of transmembrane domains. Among these 'single-domain membrane proteins' some cyanobacterial members were found as pairs of adjacent genes within the genome, but each gene was slightly different. We performed a bioinformatic analysis to propose the molecular evolution of the UPF0016 family and the emergence of the antiparallel topology. Our hypotheses were confirmed experimentally using functional complementation in yeast. This suggests an important and conserved function for UPF0016 proteins in a fundamental cellular process. We also show that members of the UPF0016 family share striking similarities, but no primary sequence homology, with members of the cation/Ca2+ exchangers (CaCA superfamily. Such similarities could be an example of convergent evolution, supporting the previous hypothesis that members of the UPF0016 family are cation/Ca2+ exchangers.

  16. Molecular modeling of the microstructure evolution during carbon fiber processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desai, Saaketh; Li, Chunyu; Shen, Tongtong; Strachan, Alejandro

    2017-12-01

    The rational design of carbon fibers with desired properties requires quantitative relationships between the processing conditions, microstructure, and resulting properties. We developed a molecular model that combines kinetic Monte Carlo and molecular dynamics techniques to predict the microstructure evolution during the processes of carbonization and graphitization of polyacrylonitrile (PAN)-based carbon fibers. The model accurately predicts the cross-sectional microstructure of the fibers with the molecular structure of the stabilized PAN fibers and physics-based chemical reaction rates as the only inputs. The resulting structures exhibit key features observed in electron microcopy studies such as curved graphitic sheets and hairpin structures. In addition, computed X-ray diffraction patterns are in good agreement with experiments. We predict the transverse moduli of the resulting fibers between 1 GPa and 5 GPa, in good agreement with experimental results for high modulus fibers and slightly lower than those of high-strength fibers. The transverse modulus is governed by sliding between graphitic sheets, and the relatively low value for the predicted microstructures can be attributed to their perfect longitudinal texture. Finally, the simulations provide insight into the relationships between chemical kinetics and the final microstructure; we observe that high reaction rates result in porous structures with lower moduli.

  17. Testing the molecular clock using mechanistic models of fossil preservation and molecular evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warnock, Rachel C M; Yang, Ziheng; Donoghue, Philip C J

    2017-06-28

    Molecular sequence data provide information about relative times only, and fossil-based age constraints are the ultimate source of information about absolute times in molecular clock dating analyses. Thus, fossil calibrations are critical to molecular clock dating, but competing methods are difficult to evaluate empirically because the true evolutionary time scale is never known. Here, we combine mechanistic models of fossil preservation and sequence evolution in simulations to evaluate different approaches to constructing fossil calibrations and their impact on Bayesian molecular clock dating, and the relative impact of fossil versus molecular sampling. We show that divergence time estimation is impacted by the model of fossil preservation, sampling intensity and tree shape. The addition of sequence data may improve molecular clock estimates, but accuracy and precision is dominated by the quality of the fossil calibrations. Posterior means and medians are poor representatives of true divergence times; posterior intervals provide a much more accurate estimate of divergence times, though they may be wide and often do not have high coverage probability. Our results highlight the importance of increased fossil sampling and improved statistical approaches to generating calibrations, which should incorporate the non-uniform nature of ecological and temporal fossil species distributions. © 2017 The Authors.

  18. Dimerization deficiency of enigmatic retinitis pigmentosa-linked rhodopsin mutants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ploier, Birgit; Caro, Lydia N.; Morizumi, Takefumi; Pandey, Kalpana; Pearring, Jillian N.; Goren, Michael A.; Finnemann, Silvia C.; Graumann, Johannes; Arshavsky, Vadim Y.; Dittman, Jeremy S.; Ernst, Oliver P.; Menon, Anant K.

    2016-10-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) is a blinding disease often associated with mutations in rhodopsin, a light-sensing G protein-coupled receptor and phospholipid scramblase. Most RP-associated mutations affect rhodopsin's activity or transport to disc membranes. Intriguingly, some mutations produce apparently normal rhodopsins that nevertheless cause disease. Here we show that three such enigmatic mutations--F45L, V209M and F220C--yield fully functional visual pigments that bind the 11-cis retinal chromophore, activate the G protein transducin, traffic to the light-sensitive photoreceptor compartment and scramble phospholipids. However, tests of scramblase activity show that unlike wild-type rhodopsin that functionally reconstitutes into liposomes as dimers or multimers, F45L, V209M and F220C rhodopsins behave as monomers. This result was confirmed in pull-down experiments. Our data suggest that the photoreceptor pathology associated with expression of these enigmatic RP-associated pigments arises from their unexpected inability to dimerize via transmembrane helices 1 and 5.

  19. Molecular evolution across the Asteraceae: micro- and macroevolutionary processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kane, Nolan C; Barker, Michael S; Zhan, Shing H; Rieseberg, Loren H

    2011-12-01

    The Asteraceae (Compositae) is a large family of over 20,000 wild, weedy, and domesticated species that comprise approximately 10% of all angiosperms, including annual and perennial herbs, shrubs and trees, and species on every continent except Antarctica. As a result, the Asteraceae provide a unique opportunity to understand the evolutionary genomics of lineage radiation and diversification at numerous phylogenetic scales. Using publicly available expressed sequence tags from 22 species representing four of the major Asteraceae lineages, we assessed neutral and nonneutral evolutionary processes across this diverse plant family. We used bioinformatic tools to identify candidate genes under selection in each species. Evolution at silent and coding sites were assessed for different Gene Ontology functional categories to compare rates of evolution over both short and long evolutionary timescales. Our results indicate that patterns of molecular change across the family are surprisingly consistent on a macroevolutionary timescale and much more so more than would be predicted from the analysis of one (or many) examples of microevolution. These analyses also point to particular classes of genes that may be crucial in shaping the radiation of this diverse plant family. Similar analyses of nuclear and chloroplast genes in six other plant families confirm that many of these patterns are common features of the plant kingdom.

  20. Extraordinary molecular evolution in the PRDM9 fertility gene.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James H Thomas

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Recent work indicates that allelic incompatibility in the mouse PRDM9 (Meisetz gene can cause hybrid male sterility, contributing to genetic isolation and potentially speciation. The only phenotype of mouse PRDM9 knockouts is a meiosis I block that causes sterility in both sexes. The PRDM9 gene encodes a protein with histone H3(K4 trimethyltransferase activity, a KRAB domain, and a DNA-binding domain consisting of multiple tandem C2H2 zinc finger (ZF domains. We have analyzed human coding polymorphism and interspecies evolutionary changes in the PRDM9 gene. The ZF domains of PRDM9 are evolving very rapidly, with compelling evidence of positive selection in primates. Positively selected amino acids are predominantly those known to make nucleotide specific contacts in C2H2 zinc fingers. These results suggest that PRDM9 is subject to recurrent selection to change DNA-binding specificity. The human PRDM9 protein is highly polymorphic in its ZF domains and nearly all polymorphisms affect the same nucleotide contact residues that are subject to positive selection. ZF domain nucleotide sequences are strongly homogenized within species, indicating that interfinger recombination contributes to their evolution. PRDM9 has previously been assumed to be a transcription factor required to induce meiosis specific genes, a role that is inconsistent with its molecular evolution. We suggest instead that PRDM9 is involved in some aspect of centromere segregation conflict and that rapidly evolving centromeric DNA drives changes in PRDM9 DNA-binding domains.

  1. Increase in Complexity and Information through Molecular Evolution

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    Peter Schuster

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Biological evolution progresses by essentially three different mechanisms: (I optimization of properties through natural selection in a population of competitors; (II development of new capabilities through cooperation of competitors caused by catalyzed reproduction; and (III variation of genetic information through mutation or recombination. Simplified evolutionary processes combine two out of the three mechanisms: Darwinian evolution combines competition (I and variation (III and is represented by the quasispecies model, major transitions involve cooperation (II of competitors (I, and the third combination, cooperation (II and variation (III provides new insights in the role of mutations in evolution. A minimal kinetic model based on simple molecular mechanisms for reproduction, catalyzed reproduction and mutation is introduced, cast into ordinary differential equations (ODEs, and analyzed mathematically in form of its implementation in a flow reactor. Stochastic aspects are investigated through computer simulation of trajectories of the corresponding chemical master equations. The competition-cooperation model, mechanisms (I and (II, gives rise to selection at low levels of resources and leads to symbiontic cooperation in case the material required is abundant. Accordingly, it provides a kind of minimal system that can undergo a (major transition. Stochastic effects leading to extinction of the population through self-enhancing oscillations destabilize symbioses of four or more partners. Mutations (III are not only the basis of change in phenotypic properties but can also prevent extinction provided the mutation rates are sufficiently large. Threshold phenomena are observed for all three combinations: The quasispecies model leads to an error threshold, the competition-cooperation model allows for an identification of a resource-triggered bifurcation with the transition, and for the cooperation-mutation model a kind of stochastic threshold for

  2. Sex speeds adaptation by altering the dynamics of molecular evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDonald, Michael J; Rice, Daniel P; Desai, Michael M

    2016-03-10

    Sex and recombination are pervasive throughout nature despite their substantial costs. Understanding the evolutionary forces that maintain these phenomena is a central challenge in biology. One longstanding hypothesis argues that sex is beneficial because recombination speeds adaptation. Theory has proposed several distinct population genetic mechanisms that could underlie this advantage. For example, sex can promote the fixation of beneficial mutations either by alleviating interference competition (the Fisher-Muller effect) or by separating them from deleterious load (the ruby in the rubbish effect). Previous experiments confirm that sex can increase the rate of adaptation, but these studies did not observe the evolutionary dynamics that drive this effect at the genomic level. Here we present the first, to our knowledge, comparison between the sequence-level dynamics of adaptation in experimental sexual and asexual Saccharomyces cerevisiae populations, which allows us to identify the specific mechanisms by which sex speeds adaptation. We find that sex alters the molecular signatures of evolution by changing the spectrum of mutations that fix, and confirm theoretical predictions that it does so by alleviating clonal interference. We also show that substantially deleterious mutations hitchhike to fixation in adapting asexual populations. In contrast, recombination prevents such mutations from fixing. Our results demonstrate that sex both speeds adaptation and alters its molecular signature by allowing natural selection to more efficiently sort beneficial from deleterious mutations.

  3. Dracula's children: molecular evolution of vampire bat venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Low, Dolyce H W; Sunagar, Kartik; Undheim, Eivind A B; Ali, Syed A; Alagon, Alejandro C; Ruder, Tim; Jackson, Timothy N W; Pineda Gonzalez, Sandy; King, Glenn F; Jones, Alun; Antunes, Agostinho; Fry, Bryan G

    2013-08-26

    While vampire bat oral secretions have been the subject of intense research, efforts have concentrated only on two components: DSPA (Desmodus rotundus salivary plasminogen activator) and Draculin. The molecular evolutionary history of DSPA has been elucidated, while conversely draculin has long been known from only a very small fragment and thus even the basic protein class was not even established. Despite the fact that vampire bat venom has a multitude of effects unaccounted by the documented bioactivities of DSPA and draculin, efforts have not been made to establish what other bioactive proteins are secreted by their submaxillary gland. In addition, it has remained unclear whether the anatomically distinct anterior and posterior lobes of the submaxillary gland are evolving on separate gene expression trajectories or if they remain under the shared genetic control. Using a combined proteomic and transcriptomic approach, we show that identical proteins are simultaneously expressed in both lobes. In addition to recovering the known structural classes of DSPA, we recovered a novel DSPA isoform as well as obtained a very large sequence stretch of draculin and thus established that it is a mutated version of the lactotransferrin scaffold. This study reveals a much more complex secretion profile than previously recognised. In addition to obtaining novel versions of scaffolds convergently recruited into other venoms (allergen-like, CRiSP, kallikrein, Kunitz, lysozyme), we also documented novel expression of small peptides related to calcitonin, PACAP, and statherin. Other overexpressed protein types included BPI-fold, lacritin, and secretoglobin. Further, we investigate the molecular evolution of various vampire bat venom-components and highlight the dominant role of positive selection in the evolution of these proteins. Conspicuously many of the proteins identified in the proteome were found to be homologous to proteins with known activities affecting vasodilation and

  4. The Lifetimes and Evolution of Molecular Cloud Cores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vázquez-Semadeni, Enrique; Kim, Jongsoo; Shadmehri, Mohsen; Ballesteros-Paredes, Javier

    2005-01-01

    We discuss the lifetimes and evolution of clumps and cores formed as turbulent density fluctuations in nearly isothermal molecular clouds. In order to maintain a broad perspective, we consider both the magnetic and nonmagnetic cases. In the latter, we argue that clumps are unlikely to reach a hydrostatic state if molecular clouds can in general be described as single-phase media with an effective polytropic exponent γecriticality of their ``parent clouds'' (the numerical boxes). In subcritical boxes, magnetostatic clumps do not form. A minority of moderately gravitationally bound clumps form, which however are dispersed by the turbulence in ~1.3 Myr, suggesting that these few longer lived cores can marginally be ``captured'' by AD to increase their mass-to-flux ratio and eventually collapse, although on timescales not significantly longer than the dynamical ones. In supercritical boxes, some cores manage to become locally supercritical and collapse in typical timescales of 2 tfc (~1 Myr). In the most supercritical simulation, a few longer lived cores are observed, which last for up to ~3 Myr, but these end up re-expanding rather than collapsing, because they are sub-Jeans in spite of being supercritical. Fewer clumps and cores form in these simulations than in their nonmagnetic counterpart. Our results suggest the following: (1) not all cores observed in molecular clouds will necessarily form stars and that a class of ``failed cores'' should exist, which will eventually redisperse and which may be related to the observed starless cores; (2) cores may be out-of-equilibrium, transient structures, rather than quasi-magnetostatic configurations; (3) the magnetic field may help reduce the star formation efficiency by reducing the probability of core formation, rather than by significantly delaying the collapse of individual cores, even in magnetically supercritical clouds.

  5. Molecular evolution of peptidergic signaling systems in bilaterians

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mirabeau, Olivier; Joly, Jean-Stéphane

    2013-01-01

    Peptide hormones and their receptors are widespread in metazoans, but the knowledge we have of their evolutionary relationships remains unclear. Recently, accumulating genome sequences from many different species have offered the opportunity to reassess the relationships between protostomian and deuterostomian peptidergic systems (PSs). Here we used sequences of all human rhodopsin and secretin-type G protein-coupled receptors as bait to retrieve potential homologs in the genomes of 15 bilaterian species, including nonchordate deuterostomian and lophotrochozoan species. Our phylogenetic analysis of these receptors revealed 29 well-supported subtrees containing mixed sets of protostomian and deuterostomian sequences. This indicated that many vertebrate and arthropod PSs that were previously thought to be phyla specific are in fact of bilaterian origin. By screening sequence databases for potential peptides, we then reconstructed entire bilaterian peptide families and showed that protostomian and deuterostomian peptides that are ligands of orthologous receptors displayed some similarity at the level of their primary sequence, suggesting an ancient coevolution between peptide and receptor genes. In addition to shedding light on the function of human G protein-coupled receptor PSs, this work presents orthology markers to study ancestral neuron types that were probably present in the last common bilaterian ancestor. PMID:23671109

  6. Linking the molecular evolution of avian beta (β) keratins to the evolution of feathers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenwold, Matthew J; Sawyer, Roger H

    2011-12-15

    Feathers of today's birds are constructed of beta (β)-keratins, structural proteins of the epidermis that are found solely in reptiles and birds. Discoveries of "feathered dinosaurs" continue to stimulate interest in the evolutionary origin of feathers, but few studies have attempted to link the molecular evolution of their major structural proteins (β-keratins) to the appearance of feathers in the fossil record. Using molecular dating methods, we show that before the appearance of Anchiornis (∼155 Million years ago (Ma)) the basal β-keratins of birds began diverging from their archosaurian ancestor ∼216 Ma. However, the subfamily of feather β-keratins, as found in living birds, did not begin diverging until ∼143 Ma. Thus, the pennaceous feathers on Anchiornis, while being constructed of avian β-keratins, most likely did not contain the feather β-keratins found in the feathers of modern birds. Our results demonstrate that the evolutionary origin of feathers does not coincide with the molecular evolution of the feather β-keratins found in modern birds. More likely, during the Late Jurassic, the epidermal structures that appeared on organisms in the lineage leading to birds, including early forms of feathers, were constructed of avian β-keratins other than those found in the feathers of modern birds. Recent biophysical studies of the β-keratins in feathers support the view that the appearance of the subfamily of feather β-keratins altered the biophysical nature of the feather establishing its role in powered flight. Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc., A Wiley Company.

  7. Molecular evolution of the polyamine oxidase gene family in Metazoa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Polticelli Fabio

    2012-06-01

    monophyletic clades including, respectively, all the SMOs and APAOs from vertebrates. The two vertebrate monophyletic clades clustered strictly mirroring the organismal phylogeny of fishes, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals. Evidences from comparative genomic analysis, structural evolution and functional divergence in a phylogenetic framework across Metazoa suggested an evolutionary scenario where the ancestor PAO coding sequence, present in invertebrates as an orthologous gene, has been duplicated in the vertebrate branch to originate the paralogous SMO and APAO genes. A further genome evolution event concerns the SMO gene of placental, but not marsupial and monotremate, mammals which increased its functional variation following an alternative splicing (AS mechanism. Conclusions In this study the explicit integration in a phylogenomic framework of phylogenetic tree construction, structure prediction, and biochemical function data/prediction, allowed inferring the molecular evolutionary history of the PAO gene family and to disambiguate paralogous genes related by duplication event (SMO and APAO and orthologous genes related by speciation events (PAOs, SMOs/APAOs. Further, while in vertebrates experimental data corroborate SMO and APAO molecular function predictions, in invertebrates the finding of a supported phylogenetic clusters of insect PAOs and the co-occurrence of two PAO variants in the amphioxus urgently claim the need for future structure-function studies.

  8. "Simulated molecular evolution" or computer-generated artifacts?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darius, F; Rojas, R

    1994-11-01

    1. The authors define a function with value 1 for the positive examples and 0 for the negative ones. They fit a continuous function but do not deal at all with the error margin of the fit, which is almost as large as the function values they compute. 2. The term "quality" for the value of the fitted function gives the impression that some biological significance is associated with values of the fitted function strictly between 0 and 1, but there is no justification for this kind of interpretation and finding the point where the fit achieves its maximum does not make sense. 3. By neglecting the error margin the authors try to optimize the fitted function using differences in the second, third, fourth, and even fifth decimal place which have no statistical significance. 4. Even if such a fit could profit from more data points, the authors should first prove that the region of interest has some kind of smoothness, that is, that a continuous fit makes any sense at all. 5. "Simulated molecular evolution" is a misnomer. We are dealing here with random search. Since the margin of error is so large, the fitted function does not provide statistically significant information about the points in search space where strings with cleavage sites could be found. This implies that the method is a highly unreliable stochastic search in the space of strings, even if the neural network is capable of learning some simple correlations. 6. Classical statistical methods are for these kind of problems with so few data points clearly superior to the neural networks used as a "black box" by the authors, which in the way they are structured provide a model with an error margin as large as the numbers being computed.7. And finally, even if someone would provide us with a function which separates strings with cleavage sites from strings without them perfectly, so-called simulated molecular evolution would not be better than random selection.Since a perfect fit would only produce exactly ones or

  9. THE MOLECULAR EVOLUTION OF THE MOST DANGEROUS EMERGING VIRUS INFECTIONS

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    Popov NN

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we reviewed what is known about the emerging viruses, the hosts that they originate in, and the molecular events that drive their emergence. When a pathogen crosses over from animals to humans, or an existing human disease suddenly increases in incidence, the infectious disease is said to be ‘emerging’. Most of the emerging pathogens originate from nonhuman animal species which has been termed natural reservoirs. The number of emerging infectious diseases has increased over the last few decades, driven by both anthropogenic and environmental factors such as population growth, urbanization, global travel and trade, intensification of livestock production. Now it has been believed that the emergence process may include four steps. On the first step the exposure of the humans to a novel virus occures. On the second step the subset of the viruses overcome the cross-species barrier. Host shifts have resulted in multiple human pandemics, such as HIV from chimps the H1N1, ‘‘spanish flu’’ from birds, SARS-CoV and virus Ebola from bats. Then some viruses enables to transmit from one human to another. And on the last step the viruses that are sufficiently transmissible between humans cause outbreaks and become endemic in human populations without the requirement of a natural reservoir. This review aims to discuss the molecular mechanisms that govern virus cross-species transmission and following stage, using the emergence of HIV, SARS-CoV, virus Ebola and influenza virus A as the models.Populations of many viruses harbour abundant genetic variability due to a combination of high mutation, recombination or reassortation rates and large population sizes. Mutations and recombinations has been associated with the increases in virulence, the evasion of host immunity and the evolution of resistance to antivirals. Genetic alterations in one species may results in the acquisition of variations that allow them to overcome cross species

  10. Molecular evolution of flavonoid dioxygenases in the family Apiaceae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gebhardt, Yvonne; Witte, Simone; Forkmann, Gert; Lukacin, Richard; Matern, Ulrich; Martens, Stefan

    2005-06-01

    Plant species of the family Apiaceae are known to accumulate flavonoids mainly in the form of flavones and flavonols. Three 2-oxoglutarate-dependent dioxygenases, flavone synthase or flavanone 3 beta-hydroxylase and flavonol synthase are involved in the biosynthesis of these secondary metabolites. The corresponding genes were cloned recently from parsley (Petroselinum crispum) leaves. Flavone synthase I appears to be confined to the Apiaceae, and the unique occurrence as well as its high sequence similarity to flavanone 3beta-hydroxylase laid the basis for evolutionary studies. In order to examine the relationship of these two enzymes throughout the Apiaceae, RT-PCR based cloning and functional identification of flavone synthases I or flavanone 3beta-hydroxylases were accomplished from Ammi majus, Anethum graveolens, Apium graveolens, Pimpinella anisum, Conium maculatum and Daucus carota, yielding three additional synthase and three additional hydroxylase cDNAs. Molecular and phylogenetic analyses of these sequences were compatible with the phylogeny based on morphological characteristics and suggested that flavone synthase I most likely resulted from gene duplication of flavanone 3beta-hydroxylase, and functional diversification at some point during the development of the apiaceae subfamilies. Furthermore, the genomic sequences from Petroselinum crispum and Daucus carota revealed two introns in each of the synthases and a lack of introns in the hydroxylases. These results might be explained by intron losses from the hydroxylases occurring at a later stage of evolution.

  11. Flash photolysis of rhodopsin in the cat retina

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ripps, H.; Mehaffey, L.; Siegel, I.M.; Ernst, W.; Kemp, C.M.

    1981-01-01

    The bleaching of rhodopsin by short-duration flashes of a xenon discharge lamp was studied in vivo in the cat retina with the aid of a rapid, spectral-scan fundus reflectometer. Difference spectra recorded over a broad range of intensities showed that the bleaching efficacy of high-intensity flashes was less than that of longer duration, steady lights delivering the same amount of energy. Both the empirical results and those derived from a theoretical analysis of flash photolysis indicate that, under the conditions of these experiments, the upper limit of the flash bleaching of rhodopsin in cat is approximately 90%. Although the fact that a full bleach could not be attained is attributable to photoreversal, i.e., the photic regeneration of rhodopsin from its light-sensitive intermediates, the 90% limit is considerably higher than the 50% (or lower) value obtained under other experimental circumstances. Thus, it appears that the duration (approximately 1 ms) and spectral composition of the flash, coupled with the kinetic parameters of the thermal and photic reactions in the cat retina, reduce the light-induced regeneration of rhodopsin to approximately 10%

  12. Probing the remarkable thermal kinetics of visual rhodopsin with E181Q and S186A mutants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Ying; Hendrickson, Heidi P.; Videla, Pablo E.; Chen, Ya-Na; Ho, Junming; Sekharan, Sivakumar; Batista, Victor S.; Tully, John C.; Yan, Elsa C. Y.

    2017-06-01

    We recently reported a very unusual temperature dependence of the rate of thermal reaction of wild type bovine rhodopsin: the Arrhenius plot exhibits a sharp "elbow" at 47 °C and, in the upper temperature range, an unexpectedly large activation energy (114 ± 8 kcal/mol) and an enormous prefactor (1072±5 s-1). In this report, we present new measurements and a theoretical model that establish convincingly that this behavior results from a collective, entropy-driven breakup of the rigid hydrogen bonding networks (HBNs) that hinder the reaction at lower temperatures. For E181Q and S186A, two rhodopsin mutants that disrupt the HBNs near the binding pocket of the 11-cis retinyl chromophore, we observe significant decreases in the activation energy (˜90 kcal/mol) and prefactor (˜1060 s-1), consistent with the conclusion that the reaction rate is enhanced by breakup of the HBN. The results provide insights into the molecular mechanism of dim-light vision and eye diseases caused by inherited mutations in the rhodopsin gene that perturb the HBNs.

  13. Declines in arrestin and rhodopsin in the macula with progression of age-related macular degeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ethen, Cheryl M; Feng, Xiao; Olsen, Timothy W; Ferrington, Deborah A

    2005-03-01

    Biochemical analysis of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) at distinct stages of the disease will help further understanding of the molecular events associated with disease progression. This study was conducted to determine the ability of a new grading system for eye bank eyes, the Minnesota Grading System (MGS), to discern distinct stages of AMD so that retinal region-specific changes in rod photoreceptor protein expression from donors could be determined. Donor eyes were assigned to a specific level of AMD by using the MGS. Expression of the rod photoreceptor proteins rhodopsin and arrestin was evaluated by Western immunoblot analysis in the macular and peripheral regions of the neurosensory retina from donors at different stages of AMD. A significant linear decline in both arrestin and rhodopsin content correlated with progressive MGS levels in the macula. In contrast, the peripheral region showed no significant correlation between MGS level and the content of either protein. The statistically significant relationship between decreasing macular rod photoreceptor proteins and progressive MGS levels of AMD demonstrates the utility of the clinically based MGS to correspond with specific protein changes found at known, progressive stages of degeneration. Future biochemical analysis of clinically characterized donor eyes will further understanding of the pathobiochemistry of AMD.

  14. Resonance raman spectroscopy of an ultraviolet-sensitive insect rhodopsin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pande, C.; Deng, H.; Rath, P.; Callender, R.H.; Schwemer, J.

    1987-01-01

    The authors present the first visual pigment resonance Raman spectra from the UV-sensitive eyes of an insect, Ascalaphus macaronius (owlfly). This pigment contains 11-cis-retinal as the chromophore. Raman data have been obtained for the acid metarhodopsin at 10 0 C in both H 2 O and D 2 O. The C=N stretching mode at 1660 cm -1 in H 2 O shifts to 1631 cm -1 upon deuteriation of the sample, clearly showing a protonated Schiff base linkage between the chromophore and the protein. The structure-sensitive fingerprint region shows similarities to the all-trans-protonated Schiff base of model retinal chromophores, as well as to the octopus acid metarhodopsin and bovine metarhodopsin I. Although spectra measured at -100 0 C with 406.7-nm excitation, to enhance scattering from rhodopsin (λ/sub max/ 345 nm), contain a significant contribution from a small amount of contaminants [cytochrome(s) and/or accessory pigment] in the sample, the C=N stretch at 1664 cm -1 suggests a protonated Schiff base linkage between the chromophore and the protein in rhodopsin as well. For comparison, this mode also appears at ∼ 1660 cm -1 in both the vertebrate (bovine) and the invertebrate (octopus) rhodopsins. These data are particularly interesting since the absorption maximum of 345 nm for rhodopsin might be expected to originate from an unprotonated Schiff base linkage. That the Schiff base linkage in the owlfly rhodopsin, like in bovine and in octopus, is protonated suggests that a charged chromophore is essential to visual transduction

  15. MOLECULAR CLOUD EVOLUTION. III. ACCRETION VERSUS STELLAR FEEDBACK

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vazquez-Semadeni, Enrique; ColIn, Pedro; Gomez, Gilberto C.; Ballesteros-Paredes, Javier; Watson, Alan W.

    2010-01-01

    We numerically investigate the effect of feedback from the ionization heating from massive stars on the evolution of giant molecular clouds (GMCs) and their star formation efficiency (SFE), which we treat as an instantaneous, time-dependent quantity. We follow the GMCs' evolution from their formation to advanced star-forming stages. After an initial period of contraction, the collapsing clouds begin forming stars, whose feedback evaporates part of the clouds' mass, opposing the continuing accretion from the infalling gas. Our results are as follows: (1) in the presence of feedback, the clouds attain levels of the SFE that are consistent at all times with observational determinations for regions of comparable star formation rates. (2) However, the dense gas mass is larger in general in the presence of feedback, while the total mass (dense gas + stars) is nearly insensitive to the presence of feedback, suggesting that it is determined mainly by the accretion, while the feedback inhibits mainly the conversion of dense gas to stars, because it acts directly to reheat and disperse the gas that is directly on its way to forming stars. (3) The factor by which the SFE is reduced upon the inclusion of feedback is a decreasing function of the cloud's mass, for clouds of size ∼10 pc. This naturally explains the larger observed SFEs of massive-star-forming regions. (4) The clouds may attain a pseudo-virialized state, with a value of the virial mass very similar to the actual cloud mass. However, this state differs from true virialization in that the clouds, rather than being equilibrium entities, are the centers of a larger-scale collapse, in which accretion replenishes the mass consumed by star formation. (5) The higher-density regions within the clouds are in a similar situation, accreting gas infalling from the less-dense, more extended regions of the clouds. (6) The density probability density functions of the regions containing the clouds in general exhibit a shape

  16. Molecular Epidemiology and Evolution of European Bat Lyssavirus 2

    Science.gov (United States)

    McElhinney, Lorraine M.; Zanoni, Reto; Kooi, Engbert A.; Neubauer-Juric, Antonie; Nokireki, Tiina; Müller, Thomas; Fooks, Anthony R.

    2018-01-01

    Bat rabies cases in Europe are mainly attributed to two lyssaviruses, namely European Bat Lyssavirus 1 (EBLV-1) and European Bat Lyssavirus 2 (EBLV-2). Prior to the death of a bat worker in Finland in 1985, very few bat rabies cases were reported. Enhanced surveillance in the two subsequent years (1986–1987) identified 263 cases (more than a fifth of all reported cases to date). Between 1977 and 2016, 1183 cases of bat rabies were reported, with the vast majority (>97%) being attributed to EBLV-1. In contrast, there have been only 39 suspected cases of EBLV-2, of which 34 have been confirmed by virus typing and presently restricted to just two bat species; Myotis daubentonii and Myotis dasycneme. The limited number of EBLV-2 cases in Europe prompted the establishment of a network of European reference laboratories to collate all available viruses and data. Despite the relatively low number of EBLV-2 cases, a large amount of anomalous data has been published in the scientific literature, which we have here reviewed and clarified. In this review, 29 EBLV-2 full genome sequences have been analysed to further our understanding of the diversity and molecular evolution of EBLV-2 in Europe. Analysis of the 29 complete EBLV-2 genome sequences clearly corroborated geographical relationships with all EBLV-2 sequences clustering at the country level irrespective of the gene studied. Further geographical clustering was also observed at a local level. There are high levels of homogeneity within the EBLV-2 species with nucleotide identities ranging from 95.5–100% and amino acid identities between 98.7% and 100%, despite the widespread distribution of the isolates both geographically and chronologically. The mean substitution rate for EBLV-2 across the five concatenated genes was 1.65 × 10−5, and evolutionary clock analysis confirms the slow evolution of EBLV-2 both between and within countries in Europe. This is further supported by the first detailed EBLV-2 intra

  17. Molecular Epidemiology and Evolution of European Bat Lyssavirus 2

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorraine M. McElhinney

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Bat rabies cases in Europe are mainly attributed to two lyssaviruses, namely European Bat Lyssavirus 1 (EBLV-1 and European Bat Lyssavirus 2 (EBLV-2. Prior to the death of a bat worker in Finland in 1985, very few bat rabies cases were reported. Enhanced surveillance in the two subsequent years (1986–1987 identified 263 cases (more than a fifth of all reported cases to date. Between 1977 and 2016, 1183 cases of bat rabies were reported, with the vast majority (>97% being attributed to EBLV-1. In contrast, there have been only 39 suspected cases of EBLV-2, of which 34 have been confirmed by virus typing and presently restricted to just two bat species; Myotis daubentonii and Myotis dasycneme. The limited number of EBLV-2 cases in Europe prompted the establishment of a network of European reference laboratories to collate all available viruses and data. Despite the relatively low number of EBLV-2 cases, a large amount of anomalous data has been published in the scientific literature, which we have here reviewed and clarified. In this review, 29 EBLV-2 full genome sequences have been analysed to further our understanding of the diversity and molecular evolution of EBLV-2 in Europe. Analysis of the 29 complete EBLV-2 genome sequences clearly corroborated geographical relationships with all EBLV-2 sequences clustering at the country level irrespective of the gene studied. Further geographical clustering was also observed at a local level. There are high levels of homogeneity within the EBLV-2 species with nucleotide identities ranging from 95.5–100% and amino acid identities between 98.7% and 100%, despite the widespread distribution of the isolates both geographically and chronologically. The mean substitution rate for EBLV-2 across the five concatenated genes was 1.65 × 10−5, and evolutionary clock analysis confirms the slow evolution of EBLV-2 both between and within countries in Europe. This is further supported by the first detailed EBLV

  18. Molecular Epidemiology and Evolution of European Bat Lyssavirus 2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McElhinney, Lorraine M; Marston, Denise A; Wise, Emma L; Freuling, Conrad M; Bourhy, Hervé; Zanoni, Reto; Moldal, Torfinn; Kooi, Engbert A; Neubauer-Juric, Antonie; Nokireki, Tiina; Müller, Thomas; Fooks, Anthony R

    2018-01-05

    Bat rabies cases in Europe are mainly attributed to two lyssaviruses, namely European Bat Lyssavirus 1 (EBLV-1) and European Bat Lyssavirus 2 (EBLV-2). Prior to the death of a bat worker in Finland in 1985, very few bat rabies cases were reported. Enhanced surveillance in the two subsequent years (1986-1987) identified 263 cases (more than a fifth of all reported cases to date). Between 1977 and 2016, 1183 cases of bat rabies were reported, with the vast majority (>97%) being attributed to EBLV-1. In contrast, there have been only 39 suspected cases of EBLV-2, of which 34 have been confirmed by virus typing and presently restricted to just two bat species; Myotis daubentonii and Myotis dasycneme . The limited number of EBLV-2 cases in Europe prompted the establishment of a network of European reference laboratories to collate all available viruses and data. Despite the relatively low number of EBLV-2 cases, a large amount of anomalous data has been published in the scientific literature, which we have here reviewed and clarified. In this review, 29 EBLV-2 full genome sequences have been analysed to further our understanding of the diversity and molecular evolution of EBLV-2 in Europe. Analysis of the 29 complete EBLV-2 genome sequences clearly corroborated geographical relationships with all EBLV-2 sequences clustering at the country level irrespective of the gene studied. Further geographical clustering was also observed at a local level. There are high levels of homogeneity within the EBLV-2 species with nucleotide identities ranging from 95.5-100% and amino acid identities between 98.7% and 100%, despite the widespread distribution of the isolates both geographically and chronologically. The mean substitution rate for EBLV-2 across the five concatenated genes was 1.65 × 10 -5 , and evolutionary clock analysis confirms the slow evolution of EBLV-2 both between and within countries in Europe. This is further supported by the first detailed EBLV-2 intra

  19. Molecular evolution of the crustacean hyperglycemic hormone family in ecdysozoans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Soyez Daniel

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Crustacean Hyperglycemic Hormone (CHH family peptides are neurohormones known to regulate several important functions in decapod crustaceans such as ionic and energetic metabolism, molting and reproduction. The structural conservation of these peptides, together with the variety of functions they display, led us to investigate their evolutionary history. CHH family peptides exist in insects (Ion Transport Peptides and may be present in all ecdysozoans as well. In order to extend the evolutionary study to the entire family, CHH family peptides were thus searched in taxa outside decapods, where they have been, to date, poorly investigated. Results CHH family peptides were characterized by molecular cloning in a branchiopod crustacean, Daphnia magna, and in a collembolan, Folsomia candida. Genes encoding such peptides were also rebuilt in silico from genomic sequences of another branchiopod, a chelicerate and two nematodes. These sequences were included in updated datasets to build phylogenies of the CHH family in pancrustaceans. These phylogenies suggest that peptides found in Branchiopoda and Collembola are more closely related to insect ITPs than to crustacean CHHs. Datasets were also used to support a phylogenetic hypothesis about pancrustacean relationships, which, in addition to gene structures, allowed us to propose two evolutionary scenarios of this multigenic family in ecdysozoans. Conclusions Evolutionary scenarios suggest that CHH family genes of ecdysozoans originate from an ancestral two-exon gene, and genes of arthropods from a three-exon one. In malacostracans, the evolution of the CHH family has involved several duplication, insertion or deletion events, leading to neuropeptides with a wide variety of functions, as observed in decapods. This family could thus constitute a promising model to investigate the links between gene duplications and functional divergence.

  20. Rhodopsin Forms Nanodomains in Rod Outer Segment Disc Membranes of the Cold-Blooded Xenopus laevis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatini Rakshit

    Full Text Available Rhodopsin forms nanoscale domains (i.e., nanodomains in rod outer segment disc membranes from mammalian species. It is unclear whether rhodopsin arranges in a similar manner in amphibian species, which are often used as a model system to investigate the function of rhodopsin and the structure of photoreceptor cells. Moreover, since samples are routinely prepared at low temperatures, it is unclear whether lipid phase separation effects in the membrane promote the observed nanodomain organization of rhodopsin from mammalian species. Rod outer segment disc membranes prepared from the cold-blooded frog Xenopus laevis were investigated by atomic force microscopy to visualize the organization of rhodopsin in the absence of lipid phase separation effects. Atomic force microscopy revealed that rhodopsin nanodomains form similarly as that observed previously in mammalian membranes. Formation of nanodomains in ROS disc membranes is independent of lipid phase separation and conserved among vertebrates.

  1. MEvoLib v1.0: the first molecular evolution library for Python.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Álvarez-Jarreta, Jorge; Ruiz-Pesini, Eduardo

    2016-10-28

    Molecular evolution studies involve many different hard computational problems solved, in most cases, with heuristic algorithms that provide a nearly optimal solution. Hence, diverse software tools exist for the different stages involved in a molecular evolution workflow. We present MEvoLib, the first molecular evolution library for Python, providing a framework to work with different tools and methods involved in the common tasks of molecular evolution workflows. In contrast with already existing bioinformatics libraries, MEvoLib is focused on the stages involved in molecular evolution studies, enclosing the set of tools with a common purpose in a single high-level interface with fast access to their frequent parameterizations. The gene clustering from partial or complete sequences has been improved with a new method that integrates accessible external information (e.g. GenBank's features data). Moreover, MEvoLib adjusts the fetching process from NCBI databases to optimize the download bandwidth usage. In addition, it has been implemented using parallelization techniques to cope with even large-case scenarios. MEvoLib is the first library for Python designed to facilitate molecular evolution researches both for expert and novel users. Its unique interface for each common task comprises several tools with their most used parameterizations. It has also included a method to take advantage of biological knowledge to improve the gene partition of sequence datasets. Additionally, its implementation incorporates parallelization techniques to enhance computational costs when handling very large input datasets.

  2. Studies on light transduction by bacteriorhodopsin and rhodopsin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Braiman, M.; Bubis, J.; Doi, T.; Chen, H.B.; Flitsch, S.L.; Franke, R.R.; Gilles-Gonzalez, M.A.; Graham, R.M.; Karnik, S.S.; Khorana, H.G.; Knox, B.E.; Krebs, M.P.; Marti, T.; Mogi, T.; Nakayama, T.; Oprian, D.D.; Puckett, K.L.; Sakmar, T.P.; Stern, L.J.; Subramaniam, S.; Thompson, D.A.

    1988-01-01

    The visual photoreceptor pigments in vertebrates and invertebrates all use retinal (vitamin A aldehyde) as the light-absorbing molecule. Recently, Stoeckenius et al. discovered bacteriorhodopsin (bR) in the purple membrane of the extreme halophile, Halobacterium halobium, which also contains all-trans retinal as the chromophore, bR carries out light-dependent proton translocation from the inside to the outside of the H. halobium cell. Since the discovery of bR, H. halobium has been found to elaborate three more retinal-based light-transducing proteins. These are halorhodopsin, a chloride ion pump, and sensory rhodopsins I and II. The authors are carrying out structure-function studies of bacteriorhodopsin, bovine rhodopsin, and related proteins primarily by the technique of recombinant DNA; they summarize below the results they have obtained recently

  3. Microbial rhodopsins on leaf surfaces of terrestrial plants

    OpenAIRE

    Atamna-Ismaeel, Nof; Finkel, Omri M.; Glaser, Fabian; Sharon, Itai; Schneider, Ron; Post, Anton F.; Spudich, John L.; von Mering, Christian; Vorholt, Julia A.; Iluz, David; Béjà, Oded; Belkin, Shimshon

    2011-01-01

    The above-ground surfaces of terrestrial plants, the phyllosphere, comprise the main interface between the terrestrial biosphere and solar radiation. It is estimated to host up to 1026 microbial cells that may intercept part of the photon flux impinging on the leaves. Based on 454-pyrosequencing-generated metagenome data, we report on the existence of diverse microbial rhodopsins in five distinct phyllospheres from tamarisk (Tamarix nilotica), soybean (Glycine max), Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis t...

  4. Scanning Laser Ophthalmoscope Measurement of Local Fundus Reflectance and Autofluorescence Changes Arising from Rhodopsin Bleaching and Regeneration

    OpenAIRE

    Morgan, Jessica I. W.; Pugh, Edward N.

    2013-01-01

    Rhodopsin was measured locally in the retina with a widely available, dual wavelength scanning laser ophthalmoscope that does not require pupil dilation. Increased autofluorescence attendant bleaching arises largely from transient removal of rhodopsin's screening of autofluorescent fluorochromes.

  5. Extracellular Matrix Molecular Remodeling in Human Liver Fibrosis Evolution.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Baiocchini

    Full Text Available Chronic liver damage leads to pathological accumulation of ECM proteins (liver fibrosis. Comprehensive characterization of the human ECM molecular composition is essential for gaining insights into the mechanisms of liver disease. To date, studies of ECM remodeling in human liver diseases have been hampered by the unavailability of purified ECM. Here, we developed a decellularization method to purify ECM scaffolds from human liver tissues. Histological and electron microscopy analyses demonstrated that the ECM scaffolds, devoid of plasma and cellular components, preserved the three-dimensional ECM structure and zonal distribution of ECM components. This method has been then applied on 57 liver biopsies of HCV-infected patients at different stages of liver fibrosis according to METAVIR classification. Label-free nLC-MS/MS proteomics and computation biology were performed to analyze the ECM molecular composition in liver fibrosis progression, thus unveiling protein expression signatures specific for the HCV-related liver fibrotic stages. In particular, the ECM molecular composition of liver fibrosis was found to involve dynamic changes in matrix stiffness, flexibility and density related to the dysregulation of predominant collagen, elastic fibers and minor components with both structural and signaling properties. This study contributes to the understanding of the molecular bases underlying ECM remodeling in liver fibrosis and suggests new molecular targets for fibrolytic strategies.

  6. Functional reconstitution of rhodopsin into tubular lipid bilayers supported by nanoporous media.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soubias, Olivier; Polozov, Ivan V; Teague, Walter E; Yeliseev, Alexei A; Gawrisch, Klaus

    2006-12-26

    We report on a novel reconstitution method for G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) that yields detergent-free, single, tubular membranes in porous anodic aluminum oxide (AAO) filters at concentrations sufficient for structural studies by solid-state NMR. The tubular membranes line the inner surface of pores that traverse the filters, permitting easy removal of detergents during sample preparation as well as delivery of ligands for functional studies. Reconstitution of bovine rhodopsin into AAO filters did not interfere with rhodopsin function. Photoactivation of rhodopsin in AAO pores, monitored by UV-vis spectrophotometry, was indistinguishable from rhodopsin in unsupported unilamellar liposomes. The rhodopsin in AAO pores is G-protein binding competent as shown by a [35S]GTPgammaS binding assay. The lipid-rhodopsin interaction was investigated by 2H NMR on sn-1- or sn-2-chain perdeuterated 1-stearoyl-2-docosahexaenoyl-sn-glycero-3-phospholine as a matrix lipid. Rhodopsin incorporation increased mosaic spread of bilayer orientations and contributed to spectral density of motions with correlation times in the range of nano- to microseconds, detected as a significant reduction in spin-spin relaxation times. The change in lipid chain order parameters due to interaction with rhodopsin was insignificant.

  7. Evolution and molecular control of hybrid incompatibility in plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chen Chen

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Postzygotic reproductive isolation (RI plays an important role in speciation. According to the stage at which it functions and the symptoms it displays, postzygotic RI can be called hybrid inviability, hybrid weakness or necrosis, hybrid sterility, or hybrid breakdown. In this review, we summarized new findings about hybrid incompatibilities in plants, most of which are from studies on Arabidopsis and rice. Recent progress suggests that hybrid incompatibility is a by-product of co-evolution either with parasitic selfish elements in the genome or with invasive microbes in the natural environment. We discuss the environmental influences on the expression of hybrid incompatibility and the possible effects of environment-dependent hybrid incompatibility on sympatric speciation. We also discuss the role of domestication on the evolution of hybrid incompatibilities.

  8. Abrupt deceleration of molecular evolution linked to the origin of arborescence in ferns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korall, Petra; Schuettpelz, Eric; Pryer, Kathleen M

    2010-09-01

    Molecular rate heterogeneity, whereby rates of molecular evolution vary among groups of organisms, is a well-documented phenomenon. Nonetheless, its causes are poorly understood. For animals, generation time is frequently cited because longer-lived species tend to have slower rates of molecular evolution than their shorter-lived counterparts. Although a similar pattern has been uncovered in flowering plants, using proxies such as growth form, the underlying process has remained elusive. Here, we find a deceleration of molecular evolutionary rate to be coupled with the origin of arborescence in ferns. Phylogenetic branch lengths within the “tree fern” clade are considerably shorter than those of closely related lineages, and our analyses demonstrate that this is due to a significant difference in molecular evolutionary rate. Reconstructions reveal that an abrupt rate deceleration coincided with the evolution of the long-lived tree-like habit at the base of the tree fern clade. This suggests that a generation time effect may well be ubiquitous across the green tree of life, and that the search for a responsible mechanism must focus on characteristics shared by all vascular plants. Discriminating among the possibilities will require contributions from various biological disciplines,but will be necessary for a full appreciation of molecular evolution.

  9. Phylogeography, population dynamics, and molecular evolution of European bat lyssaviruses

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Davis, P.L.; Holmes, E.C.; Larrous, F.

    2005-01-01

    origin, and population growth rates of EBLV-1. Our study encompassed data from 12 countries collected over a time span of 35 years and focused on the glycoprotein (G) and nucleoprotein (N) genes. We show that although the two subtypes of EBLV-1-EBLV-1a and EBLV-lb-have both grown at a low exponential...... in EBLV-1b. Our inferred rate of nucleotide substitution in EBLV-1, approximately 5 X 10(-5) substitutions per site per year, was also one of the lowest recorded for RNA viruses and implied that the current genetic diversity in the virus arose 500 to 750 years ago. We propose that the slow evolution...

  10. Molecular Phylogenetic: Organism Taxonomy Method Based on Evolution History

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N.L.P Indi Dharmayanti

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Phylogenetic is described as taxonomy classification of an organism based on its evolution history namely its phylogeny and as a part of systematic science that has objective to determine phylogeny of organism according to its characteristic. Phylogenetic analysis from amino acid and protein usually became important area in sequence analysis. Phylogenetic analysis can be used to follow the rapid change of a species such as virus. The phylogenetic evolution tree is a two dimensional of a species graphic that shows relationship among organisms or particularly among their gene sequences. The sequence separation are referred as taxa (singular taxon that is defined as phylogenetically distinct units on the tree. The tree consists of outer branches or leaves that represents taxa and nodes and branch represent correlation among taxa. When the nucleotide sequence from two different organism are similar, they were inferred to be descended from common ancestor. There were three methods which were used in phylogenetic, namely (1 Maximum parsimony, (2 Distance, and (3 Maximum likehoood. Those methods generally are applied to construct the evolutionary tree or the best tree for determine sequence variation in group. Every method is usually used for different analysis and data.

  11. Molecular evolution of the major chemosensory gene families in insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez-Gracia, A; Vieira, F G; Rozas, J

    2009-09-01

    Chemoreception is a crucial biological process that is essential for the survival of animals. In insects, olfaction allows the organism to recognise volatile cues that allow the detection of food, predators and mates, whereas the sense of taste commonly allows the discrimination of soluble stimulants that elicit feeding behaviours and can also initiate innate sexual and reproductive responses. The most important proteins involved in the recognition of chemical cues comprise moderately sized multigene families. These families include odorant-binding proteins (OBPs) and chemosensory proteins (CSPs), which are involved in peripheral olfactory processing, and the chemoreceptor superfamily formed by the olfactory receptor (OR) and gustatory receptor (GR) families. Here, we review some recent evolutionary genomic studies of chemosensory gene families using the data from fully sequenced insect genomes, especially from the 12 newly available Drosophila genomes. Overall, the results clearly support the birth-and-death model as the major mechanism of evolution in these gene families. Namely, new members arise by tandem gene duplication, progressively diverge in sequence and function, and can eventually be lost from the genome by a deletion or pseudogenisation event. Adaptive changes fostered by environmental shifts are also observed in the evolution of chemosensory families in insects and likely involve reproductive, ecological or behavioural traits. Consequently, the current size of these gene families is mainly a result of random gene gain and loss events. This dynamic process may represent a major source of genetic variation, providing opportunities for FUTURE specific adaptations.

  12. Non-Molecular-Clock-Like Evolution following Viral Origins in Homo sapiens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wendy Mok

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Researchers routinely adopt molecular clock assumptions in conducting sequence analyses to estimate dates for viral origins in humans. We used computational methods to examine the extent to which this practice can result in inaccurate ‘retrodiction.’ Failing to account for dynamic molecular evolution can affect greatly estimating index case dates, resulting in an overestimated age for the SARS-CoV-human infection, for instance.

  13. Evolution of cell cycle control: same molecular machines, different regulation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    de Lichtenberg, Ulrik; Jensen, Thomas Skøt; Brunak, Søren

    2007-01-01

    Decades of research has together with the availability of whole genomes made it clear that many of the core components involved in the cell cycle are conserved across eukaryotes, both functionally and structurally. These proteins are organized in complexes and modules that are activated or deacti......Decades of research has together with the availability of whole genomes made it clear that many of the core components involved in the cell cycle are conserved across eukaryotes, both functionally and structurally. These proteins are organized in complexes and modules that are activated...... for assembling the same molecular machines just in time for action....

  14. Molecular networks and the evolution of human cognitive specializations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fontenot, Miles; Konopka, Genevieve

    2014-12-01

    Inroads into elucidating the origins of human cognitive specializations have taken many forms, including genetic, genomic, anatomical, and behavioral assays that typically compare humans to non-human primates. While the integration of all of these approaches is essential for ultimately understanding human cognition, here, we review the usefulness of coexpression network analysis for specifically addressing this question. An increasing number of studies have incorporated coexpression networks into brain expression studies comparing species, disease versus control tissue, brain regions, or developmental time periods. A clearer picture has emerged of the key genes driving brain evolution, as well as the developmental and regional contributions of gene expression patterns important for normal brain development and those misregulated in cognitive diseases. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Glutamine synthetase gene evolution: A good molecular clock

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pesole, G.; Lanvave, C.; Saccone, C.; Bozzetti, M.P.; Preparata, G.

    1991-01-01

    Glutamine synthetase gene evolution in various animals, plants, and bacteria was evaluated by a general stationary Markov model. The evolutionary process proved to be unexpectedly regular even for a time span as long as that between the divergence of prokaryotes from eukaryotes. This enabled us to draw phylogenetic trees for species whose phylogeny cannot be easily reconstructed from the fossil record. The calculation of the times of divergence of the various organelle-specific enzymes led us to hypothesize that the pea and bean chloroplast genes for these enzymes originated from the duplication of nuclear genes as a result of the different metabolic needs of the various species. The data indicate that the duplication of plastid glutamine synthetase genes occurred long after the endosymbiotic events that produced the organelles themselves

  16. Mammalian life histories: their evolution and molecular-genetic mechanisms

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sacher, G.A.

    1978-01-01

    Survival curves for various species of mammals are discussed and a table is presented to show recorded maximum life spans of about 30 species of mammals. The range of longevities is from one year for shrews and moles up to more than 80 years for the fin whale. The constitutional correlates of longevity are discussed with regard to body size, brain weight,metabolic rates, and body temperature. It is concluded that longevity evolved as a positive trait, associated with the evolution of large body size and brain size. Life table data for man, the thorough-bred horse, beagle dogs, and the laboratory rodents, Mus musculus and Peromyscus leucopus are discussed. The data show a pattern of exponential increase of death rate with age. A laboratory model using Mus musculus and Peromyscus leucopus for the study of the longevity-assurance mechanisms is described. (HLW)

  17. Mutational Analysis of the Rhodopsin Gene in Sector Retinitis Pigmentosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Napier, Maria L; Durga, Dash; Wolsley, Clive J; Chamney, Sarah; Alexander, Sharon; Brennan, Rosie; Simpson, David A; Silvestri, Giuliana; Willoughby, Colin E

    2015-01-01

    To determine the role of rhodopsin (RHO) gene mutations in patients with sector retinitis pigmentosa (RP) from Northern Ireland. A case series of sector RP in a tertiary ocular genetics clinic. Four patients with sector RP were recruited from the Royal Victoria Hospital (Belfast, Northern Ireland) and Altnagelvin Hospital (Londonderry, Northern Ireland) following informed consent. The diagnosis of sector RP was based on clinical examination, International Society for Clinical Electrophysiology of Vision (ISCEV) standard electrophysiology, and visual field analysis. DNA was extracted from peripheral blood leucocytes and the coding regions and adjacent flanking intronic sequences of the RHO gene were polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplified and cycle sequenced. Rhodopsin mutational status. A heterozygous missense mutation in RHO (c.173C > T) resulting in a non-conservative substitution of threonine to methionine (p. Thr58Met) was identified in one patient and was absent from 360 control individuals. This non-conservative substitution (p.Thr58Met) replaces a highly evolutionary conserved polar hydrophilic threonine residue with a non-polar hydrophobic methionine residue at position 58 near the cytoplasmic border of helix A of RHO. The study identified a RHO gene mutation (p.Thr58Met) not previously reported in RP in a patient with sector RP. These findings outline the phenotypic variability associated with RHO mutations. It has been proposed that the regional effects of RHO mutations are likely to result from interplay between mutant alleles and other genetic, epigenetic and environmental factors.

  18. Prospects for octopus rhodopsin utilization in optical and quantum computation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sivozhelezov, V.; Nicolini, A.

    2007-01-01

    Visual membranes of octopus, whose main component is the light-sensitive signal transducer octopus rhodopsin (octR), are extremely highly ordered, easily capture single photons, and are sensitive to light polarization, which shows their high potential for use as a QC detector. However, artificial membranes made of octR are neither highly enough ordered nor stable, while the bacterial homolog of octR, bacteriorhodopsin (bR), having the same topology as octR, forms both stable and ordered artificial membranes but lacks the optical properties important for optical QC. In this study, we investigate the structural basis for ordering of the two proteins in membranes in terms of crystallization behavior. We compare atomic resolution 3D structures of octR and bR and show the possibility for structural bR/octR interconversion by mutagenesis. We also show that the use of (nano)biotechnology can allow (1) high-precision manipulation of the light acceptor, retinal, including converting its surrounding into that of bacterial rhodopsin, the protein already used in optical-computation devices and (2) development of multicomponent and highly regular 2D structures with a high potential for being efficient optical QC detectors

  19. Molecular Evolution of the Oxygen-Binding Hemerythrin Domain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia Alvarez-Carreño

    Full Text Available The evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis during Precambrian times entailed the diversification of strategies minimizing reactive oxygen species-associated damage. Four families of oxygen-carrier proteins (hemoglobin, hemerythrin and the two non-homologous families of arthropodan and molluscan hemocyanins are known to have evolved independently the capacity to bind oxygen reversibly, providing cells with strategies to cope with the evolutionary pressure of oxygen accumulation. Oxygen-binding hemerythrin was first studied in marine invertebrates but further research has made it clear that it is present in the three domains of life, strongly suggesting that its origin predated the emergence of eukaryotes.Oxygen-binding hemerythrins are a monophyletic sub-group of the hemerythrin/HHE (histidine, histidine, glutamic acid cation-binding domain. Oxygen-binding hemerythrin homologs were unambiguously identified in 367/2236 bacterial, 21/150 archaeal and 4/135 eukaryotic genomes. Overall, oxygen-binding hemerythrin homologues were found in the same proportion as single-domain and as long protein sequences. The associated functions of protein domains in long hemerythrin sequences can be classified in three major groups: signal transduction, phosphorelay response regulation, and protein binding. This suggests that in many organisms the reversible oxygen-binding capacity was incorporated in signaling pathways. A maximum-likelihood tree of oxygen-binding hemerythrin homologues revealed a complex evolutionary history in which lateral gene transfer, duplications and gene losses appear to have played an important role.Hemerythrin is an ancient protein domain with a complex evolutionary history. The distinctive iron-binding coordination site of oxygen-binding hemerythrins evolved first in prokaryotes, very likely prior to the divergence of Firmicutes and Proteobacteria, and spread into many bacterial, archaeal and eukaryotic species. The later evolution of the

  20. Molecular relics from chemical evolution and the origin of life

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chela Flores, J.

    1994-04-01

    The main hypothesis proposed in this work intends to remove the difficulty that arises from the conjecture that the RNA world may have left molecular relics that may still be extant in the angiosperms. We discuss whether it is possible to envisage a possible evolutionary pathway of the RNA replicators spanning the vast time span separating the first appearance of the angiosperms, late in the Mesozoic era (the Lower Cretaceous), from the most likely suberas in which the RNA world may have occurred, namely the Hadean/Early Archean. In order to address this question we suggest that through horizontal gene transfer, as well as through a series of symbiosis of the precursor cell of the land plants, the genes of the replicases (RNA-directed RNA polymerases) associated with putative DNA-independent RNA replicators may have been transferred vertically, eventually becoming specific to the angiosperms. (author). Refs, 7 tabs

  1. Molecular Evolution of Spider Vision: New Opportunities, Familiar Players.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morehouse, Nathan I; Buschbeck, Elke K; Zurek, Daniel B; Steck, Mireille; Porter, Megan L

    2017-08-01

    Spiders are among the world's most species-rich animal lineages, and their visual systems are likewise highly diverse. These modular visual systems, composed of four pairs of image-forming "camera" eyes, have taken on a huge variety of forms, exhibiting variation in eye size, eye placement, image resolution, and field of view, as well as sensitivity to color, polarization, light levels, and motion cues. However, despite this conspicuous diversity, our understanding of the genetic underpinnings of these visual systems remains shallow. Here, we review the current literature, analyze publicly available transcriptomic data, and discuss hypotheses about the origins and development of spider eyes. Our efforts highlight that there are many new things to discover from spider eyes, and yet these opportunities are set against a backdrop of deep homology with other arthropod lineages. For example, many (but not all) of the genes that appear important for early eye development in spiders are familiar players known from the developmental networks of other model systems (e.g., Drosophila). Similarly, our analyses of opsins and related phototransduction genes suggest that spider photoreceptors employ many of the same genes and molecular mechanisms known from other arthropods, with a hypothesized ancestral spider set of four visual and four nonvisual opsins. This deep homology provides a number of useful footholds into new work on spider vision and the molecular basis of its extant variety. We therefore discuss what some of these first steps might be in the hopes of convincing others to join us in studying the vision of these fascinating creatures.

  2. Proton-pumping rhodopsins are abundantly expressed by microbial eukaryotes in a high-Arctic fjord.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vader, Anna; Laughinghouse, Haywood D; Griffiths, Colin; Jakobsen, Kjetill S; Gabrielsen, Tove M

    2018-02-01

    Proton-pumping rhodopsins provide an alternative pathway to photosynthesis by which solar energy can enter the marine food web. Rhodopsin genes are widely found in marine bacteria, also in the Arctic, and were recently reported from several eukaryotic lineages. So far, little is known about rhodopsin expression in Arctic eukaryotes. In this study, we used metatranscriptomics and 18S rDNA tag sequencing to examine the mid-summer function and composition of marine protists (size 0.45-10 µm) in the high-Arctic Billefjorden (Spitsbergen), especially focussing on the expression of microbial proton-pumping rhodopsins. Rhodopsin transcripts were highly abundant, at a level similar to that of genes involved in photosynthesis. Phylogenetic analyses placed the environmental rhodopsins within disparate eukaryotic lineages, including dinoflagellates, stramenopiles, haptophytes and cryptophytes. Sequence comparison indicated the presence of several functional types, including xanthorhodopsins and a eukaryotic clade of proteorhodopsin. Transcripts belonging to the proteorhodopsin clade were also abundant in published metatranscriptomes from other oceanic regions, suggesting a global distribution. The diversity and abundance of rhodopsins show that these light-driven proton pumps play an important role in Arctic microbial eukaryotes. Understanding this role is imperative to predicting the future of the Arctic marine ecosystem faced by a changing light climate due to diminishing sea-ice. © 2017 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  3. [Thermal stability of rhodopsins and opsins in warm- and cold-blooded vertebrates].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berman, A L; Suvorov, S A; Parnova, R G; Gracheva, O A; Rychkova, M P

    1981-01-01

    Thermal stability of rhodopsins and opsins has been studied in endothermic (sheep, cattle, pig, rat) and ectothermic (frog) animals under two different conditions -- in the intact photoreceptor membranes (PM) and after substitution of the lipid surrounding of rhodopsins by molecules of a detergent Triton X-100. Lipid composition of PM in these animals was also studied, as well as the effect of proteases (pronase and papaine) upon thermal stability of rhodopsins in PM and in 1% Triton X-100 solutions. The thermal resistance of rhodopsins in PM was found to vary in the animals used to a great extent. The maximal differences in thermal stability of rhodopsins in ecto- and endothermic animals were due to the properties of photoreceptor protein itself, whereas in ectothermic animals they resulted mainly from differences in the lipid composition of PM. PM of endothermic animals differ from those of ectothermic ones by a lower content of polyenoic fatty acids and by a higher amount of phosphatidyl ethanolamine. The thermal stability of rhodopsins is not due to rhodopsin molecule as a whole, and depends mainly on its part which is directly bound to 11-cis retinal, located in hydrophobic region of PM and inaccessible to protease attack.

  4. DNA Re-EvolutioN: a game for learning molecular genetics and evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miralles, Laura; Moran, Paloma; Dopico, Eduardo; Garcia-Vazquez, Eva

    2013-01-01

    Evolution is a main concept in biology, but not many students understand how it works. In this article we introduce the game DNA Re-EvolutioN as an active learning tool that uses genetic concepts (DNA structure, transcription and translation, mutations, natural selection, etc.) as playing rules. Students will learn about molecular evolution while playing a game that mixes up theory and entertainment. The game can be easily adapted to different educational levels. The main goal of this play is to arrive at the end of the game with the longest protein. Students play with pawns and dices, a board containing hypothetical events (mutations, selection) that happen to molecules, "Evolution cards" with indications for DNA mutations, prototypes of a DNA and a mRNA chain with colored "nucleotides" (plasticine balls), and small pieces simulating t-RNA with aminoacids that will serve to construct a "protein" based on the DNA chain. Students will understand how changes in DNA affect the final protein product and may be subjected to positive or negative selection, using a didactic tool funnier than classical theory lectures and easier than molecular laboratory experiments: a flexible and feasible game to learn and enjoy molecular evolution at no-cost. The game was tested by majors and non-majors in genetics from 13 different countries and evaluated with pre- and post-tests obtaining very positive results. © 2013 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  5. Immobilization of molecular cobalt electrocatalyst by hydrophobic interaction with hematite photoanode for highly stable oxygen evolution

    KAUST Repository

    Joya, Khurram

    2015-07-15

    A unique modification of a hematite photoanode with perfluorinated Co-phthalocyanine (CoFPc) by strong binding associated with hydrophobic interaction is demonstrated. The resultant molecular electrocatalyst – hematite photoanode hybrid material showed significant onset shift and high stability for photoelectrochemical oxidation evolution reaction (OER).

  6. Parasite histories and novel phylogenetic tools: alternative approaches to inferring parasite evolution from molecular markers

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hypša, Václav

    2006-01-01

    Roč. 36, č. 2 (2006), s. 141-155 ISSN 0020-7519 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA206/04/0520 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60220518 Keywords : molecular phylogeny * parasite evolution Subject RIV: EE - Microbiology, Virology Impact factor: 3.337, year: 2006

  7. Immobilization of molecular cobalt electrocatalyst by hydrophobic interaction with hematite photoanode for highly stable oxygen evolution

    KAUST Repository

    Joya, Khurram; Morlanes, Natalia; Maloney, Edward; Rodionov, Valentin; Takanabe, Kazuhiro

    2015-01-01

    A unique modification of a hematite photoanode with perfluorinated Co-phthalocyanine (CoFPc) by strong binding associated with hydrophobic interaction is demonstrated. The resultant molecular electrocatalyst – hematite photoanode hybrid material showed significant onset shift and high stability for photoelectrochemical oxidation evolution reaction (OER).

  8. Light-promoted rhodopsin expression and starvation survival in the marine dinoflagellate Oxyrrhis marina.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhiling Guo

    Full Text Available The discovery of microbial rhodopsins in marine proteobacteria changed the dogma that photosynthesis is the only pathway to use the solar energy for biological utilization in the marine environment. Although homologs of these rhodopsins have been identified in dinoflagellates, the diversity of the encoding genes and their physiological roles remain unexplored. As an initial step toward addressing the gap, we conducted high-throughput transcriptome sequencing on Oxyrrhis marina to retrieve rhodopsin transcripts, rapid amplification of cDNA ends to isolate full-length cDNAs of dominant representatives, and quantitative reverse-transcription PCR to investigate their expression under varying conditions. Our phylogenetic analyses showed that O. marina contained both the proton-pumping type (PR and sensory type (SR rhodopsins, and the transcriptome data showed that the PR type dominated over the SR type. We compared rhodopsin gene expression for cultures kept under light: dark cycle and continuous darkness in a time course of 24 days without feeding. Although both types of rhodopsin were expressed under the two conditions, the expression levels of PR were much higher than SR, consistent with the transcriptomic data. Furthermore, relative to cultures kept in the dark, rhodopsin expression levels and cell survival rate were both higher in cultures grown in the light. This is the first report of light-dependent promotion of starvation survival and concomitant promotion of PR expression in a eukaryote. While direct evidence needs to come from functional test on rhodopsins in vitro or gene knockout/knockdown experiments, our results suggest that the proton-pumping rhodopsin might be responsible for the light-enhanced survival of O. marina, as previously demonstrated in bacteria.

  9. Karyotypic evolution in the Galliformes: an examination of the process of karyotypic evolution by comparison of the molecular cytogenetic findings with the molecular phylogeny.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shibusawa, M; Nishibori, M; Nishida-Umehara, C; Tsudzuki, M; Masabanda, J; Griffin, D K; Matsuda, Y

    2004-01-01

    To define the process of karyotypic evolution in the Galliformes on a molecular basis, we conducted genome-wide comparative chromosome painting for eight species, i.e. silver pheasant (Lophura nycthemera), Lady Amherst's pheasant (Chrysolophus amherstiae), ring-necked pheasant (Phasianus colchicus), turkey (Meleagris gallopavo), Western capercaillie (Tetrao urogallus), Chinese bamboo-partridge (Bambusicola thoracica) and common peafowl (Pavo cristatus) of the Phasianidae, and plain chachalaca (Ortalis vetula) of the Cracidae, with chicken DNA probes of chromosomes 1-9 and Z. Including our previous data from five other species, chicken (Gallus gallus), Japanese quail (Coturnix japonica) and blue-breasted quail (Coturnix chinensis) of the Phasianidae, guinea fowl (Numida meleagris) of the Numididae and California quail (Callipepla californica) of the Odontophoridae, we represented the evolutionary changes of karyotypes in the 13 species of the Galliformes. In addition, we compared the cytogenetic data with the molecular phylogeny of the 13 species constructed with the nucleotide sequences of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene, and discussed the process of karyotypic evolution in the Galliformes. Comparative chromosome painting confirmed the previous data on chromosome rearrangements obtained by G-banding analysis, and identified several novel chromosome rearrangements. The process of the evolutionary changes of macrochromosomes in the 13 species was in good accordance with the molecular phylogeny, and the ancestral karyotype of the Galliformes is represented. Copyright 2004 S. Karger AG, Basel

  10. Distribution and molecular evolution of bacillus anthracis genotypes in Namibia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wolfgang Beyer

    Full Text Available The recent development of genetic markers for Bacillus anthracis has made it possible to monitor the spread and distribution of this pathogen during and between anthrax outbreaks. In Namibia, anthrax outbreaks occur annually in the Etosha National Park (ENP and on private game and livestock farms. We genotyped 384 B. anthracis isolates collected between 1983-2010 to identify the possible epidemiological correlations of anthrax outbreaks within and outside the ENP and to analyze genetic relationships between isolates from domestic and wild animals. The isolates came from 20 animal species and from the environment and were genotyped using a 31-marker multi-locus-VNTR-analysis (MLVA and, in part, by twelve single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP markers and four single nucleotide repeat (SNR markers. A total of 37 genotypes (GT were identified by MLVA, belonging to four SNP-groups. All GTs belonged to the A-branch in the cluster- and SNP-analyses. Thirteen GTs were found only outside the ENP, 18 only within the ENP and 6 both inside and outside. Genetic distances between isolates increased with increasing time between isolations. However, genetic distance between isolates at the beginning and end of the study period was relatively small, indicating that while the majority of GTs were only found sporadically, three genetically close GTs, accounting for more than four fifths of all the ENP isolates, appeared dominant throughout the study period. Genetic distances among isolates were significantly greater for isolates from different host species, but this effect was small, suggesting that while species-specific ecological factors may affect exposure processes, transmission cycles in different host species are still highly interrelated. The MLVA data were further used to establish a model of the probable evolution of GTs within the endemic region of the ENP. SNR-analysis was helpful in correlating an isolate with its source but did not elucidate

  11. The rapid evolution of molecular genetic diagnostics in neuromuscular diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volk, Alexander E; Kubisch, Christian

    2017-10-01

    The development of massively parallel sequencing (MPS) has revolutionized molecular genetic diagnostics in monogenic disorders. The present review gives a brief overview of different MPS-based approaches used in clinical diagnostics of neuromuscular disorders (NMDs) and highlights their advantages and limitations. MPS-based approaches like gene panel sequencing, (whole) exome sequencing, (whole) genome sequencing, and RNA sequencing have been used to identify the genetic cause in NMDs. Although gene panel sequencing has evolved as a standard test for heterogeneous diseases, it is still debated, mainly because of financial issues and unsolved problems of variant interpretation, whether genome sequencing (and to a lesser extent also exome sequencing) of single patients can already be regarded as routine diagnostics. However, it has been shown that the inclusion of parents and additional family members often leads to a substantial increase in the diagnostic yield in exome-wide/genome-wide MPS approaches. In addition, MPS-based RNA sequencing just enters the research and diagnostic scene. Next-generation sequencing increasingly enables the detection of the genetic cause in highly heterogeneous diseases like NMDs in an efficient and affordable way. Gene panel sequencing and family-based exome sequencing have been proven as potent and cost-efficient diagnostic tools. Although clinical validation and interpretation of genome sequencing is still challenging, diagnostic RNA sequencing represents a promising tool to bypass some hurdles of diagnostics using genomic DNA.

  12. Advances on molecular mechanism of the adaptive evolution of Chiroptera (bats).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yunpeng, Liang; Li, Yu

    2015-01-01

    As the second biggest animal group in mammals, Chiroptera (bats) demonstrates many unique adaptive features in terms of flight, echolocation, auditory acuity, feeding habit, hibernation and immune defense, providing an excellent system for understanding the molecular basis of how organisms adapt to the living environments encountered. In this review, we summarize the researches on the molecular mechanism of the adaptive evolution of Chiroptera, especially the recent researches at the genome levels, suggesting a far more complex evolutionary pattern and functional diversity than previously thought. In the future, along with the increasing numbers of Chiroptera species genomes available, new evolutionary patterns and functional divergence will be revealed, which can promote the further understanding of this animal group and the molecular mechanism of adaptive evolution.

  13. Degeneration and domestication of a selfish gene in yeast: molecular evolution versus site-directed mutagenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koufopanou, Vassiliki; Burt, Austin

    2005-07-01

    VDE is a homing endonuclease gene in yeasts with an unusual evolutionary history including horizontal transmission, degeneration, and domestication into the mating-type switching locus HO. We investigate here the effects of these features on its molecular evolution. In addition, we correlate rates of evolution with results from site-directed mutagenesis studies. Functional elements have lower rates of evolution than degenerate ones and higher conservation at functionally important sites. However, functionally important and unimportant sites are equally likely to have been involved in the evolution of new function during the domestication of VDE into HO. The domestication event also indicates that VDE has been lost in some species and that VDE has been present in yeasts for more than 50 Myr.

  14. Nuclear Architecture and Patterns of Molecular Evolution Are Correlated in the Ciliate Chilodonella uncinata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maurer-Alcalá, Xyrus X; Katz, Laura A

    2016-06-08

    The relationship between nuclear architecture and patterns of molecular evolution in lineages across the eukaryotic tree of life is not well understood, partly because molecular evolution is traditionally explored as changes in base pairs along a linear sequence without considering the context of nuclear position of chromosomes. The ciliate Chilodonella uncinata is an ideal system to address the relationship between nuclear architecture and patterns of molecular evolution as the somatic macronucleus of this ciliate is composed of a peripheral DNA-rich area (orthomere) and a DNA-poor central region (paramere) to form a "heteromeric" macronucleus. Moreover, because the somatic chromosomes of C. uncinata are highly processed into "gene-sized" chromosomes (i.e., nanochromosomes), we can assess fine-scale relationships between location and sequence evolution. By combining fluorescence microscopy and analyses of transcriptome data from C. uncinata, we find that highly expressed genes have the greatest codon usage bias and are enriched in DNA-poor regions. In contrast, genes with less biased sequences tend to be concentrated in DNA abundant areas, at least during vegetative growth. Our analyses are consistent with recent work in plants and animals where nuclear architecture plays a role in gene expression. At the same time, the unusual localization of nanochromosomes suggests that the highly structured nucleus in C. uncinata may create a "gene bank" that facilitates rapid changes in expression of genes required only in specific life history stages. By using "nonmodel" organisms like C. uncinata, we can explore the universality of eukaryotic features while also providing examples of novel properties (i.e., the presence of a gene bank) that build from these features. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  15. The Molecular Basis of Evolution and Disease: A Cold War Alliance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suárez-Díaz, Edna

    2017-03-28

    This paper extends previous arguments against the assumption that the study of variation at the molecular level was instigated with a view to solving an internal conflict between the balance and classical schools of population genetics. It does so by focusing on the intersection of basic research in protein chemistry and the molecular approach to disease with the enactment of global health campaigns during the Cold War period. The paper connects advances in research on protein structure and function as reflected in Christian Anfinsen's The molecular basis of evolution, with a political reading of Emilé Zuckerkandl and Linus Pauling's identification of molecular disease and evolution. Beyond atomic fallout, these advances constituted a rationale for the promotion of genetic surveys of human populations in the Third World, in connection with international health programs. Light is shed not only on the experimental roots of the molecular challenge but on the broader geopolitical context where the rising role of biomedicine and public health (particularly the malaria eradication campaigns) had an impact on evolutionary biology.

  16. Identification of the key determinant of the transport promiscuity in Na+-translocating rhodopsins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mamedov, Adalyat M; Bertsova, Yulia V; Anashkin, Viktor A; Mamedov, Mahir D; Baykov, Alexander A; Bogachev, Alexander V

    2018-05-15

    Bacterial Na + -transporting rhodopsins convert solar energy into transmembrane ion potential difference. Typically, they are strictly specific for Na + , but some can additionally transport H + . To determine the structural basis of cation promiscuity in Na + -rhodopsins, we compared their primary structures and found a single position that harbors a cysteine in strictly specific Na + -rhodopsins and a serine in the promiscuous Krokinobacter eikastus Na + -rhodopsin (Kr2). A Cys253Ser variant of the strictly specific Dokdonia sp. PRO95 Na + -rhodopsin (NaR) was indeed found to transport both Na + and H + in a light-dependent manner when expressed in retinal-producing Escherichia coli cells. The dual specificity of the NaR variant was confirmed by analysis of its photocycle, which revealed an acceleration of the cation-capture step by comparison with the wild-type NaR in a Na + -deficient medium. The structural basis for the dependence of the Na + /H + specificity in Na + -rhodopsin on residue 253 remains to be determined. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Molecular Evolution of the dotA Gene in Legionella pneumophila

    OpenAIRE

    Ko, Kwan Soo; Hong, Seong Karp; Lee, Hae Kyung; Park, Mi-Yeoun; Kook, Yoon-Hoh

    2003-01-01

    The molecular evolution of dotA, which is related to the virulence of Legionella pneumophila, was investigated by comparing the sequences of 15 reference strains (serogroups 1 to 15). It was found that dotA has a complex mosaic structure. The whole dotA gene of Legionella pneumophila subsp. pneumophila serogroups 2, 6, and 12 has been transferred from Legionella pneumophila subsp. fraseri. A discrepancy was found between the trees inferred from the nucleotide and deduced amino acid sequences ...

  18. MBEToolbox: a Matlab toolbox for sequence data analysis in molecular biology and evolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xia Xuhua

    2005-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background MATLAB is a high-performance language for technical computing, integrating computation, visualization, and programming in an easy-to-use environment. It has been widely used in many areas, such as mathematics and computation, algorithm development, data acquisition, modeling, simulation, and scientific and engineering graphics. However, few functions are freely available in MATLAB to perform the sequence data analyses specifically required for molecular biology and evolution. Results We have developed a MATLAB toolbox, called MBEToolbox, aimed at filling this gap by offering efficient implementations of the most needed functions in molecular biology and evolution. It can be used to manipulate aligned sequences, calculate evolutionary distances, estimate synonymous and nonsynonymous substitution rates, and infer phylogenetic trees. Moreover, it provides an extensible, functional framework for users with more specialized requirements to explore and analyze aligned nucleotide or protein sequences from an evolutionary perspective. The full functions in the toolbox are accessible through the command-line for seasoned MATLAB users. A graphical user interface, that may be especially useful for non-specialist end users, is also provided. Conclusion MBEToolbox is a useful tool that can aid in the exploration, interpretation and visualization of data in molecular biology and evolution. The software is publicly available at http://web.hku.hk/~jamescai/mbetoolbox/ and http://bioinformatics.org/project/?group_id=454.

  19. Isolation and structure-function characterization of a signaling-active rhodopsin-G protein complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Yang; Westfield, Gerwin; Erickson, Jon W; Cerione, Richard A; Skiniotis, Georgios; Ramachandran, Sekar

    2017-08-25

    The visual photo-transduction cascade is a prototypical G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) signaling system, in which light-activated rhodopsin (Rho*) is the GPCR catalyzing the exchange of GDP for GTP on the heterotrimeric G protein transducin (G T ). This results in the dissociation of G T into its component α T -GTP and β 1 γ 1 subunit complex. Structural information for the Rho*-G T complex will be essential for understanding the molecular mechanism of visual photo-transduction. Moreover, it will shed light on how GPCRs selectively couple to and activate their G protein signaling partners. Here, we report on the preparation of a stable detergent-solubilized complex between Rho* and a heterotrimer (G T *) comprising a Gα T /Gα i1 chimera (α T *) and β 1 γ 1 The complex was formed on native rod outer segment membranes upon light activation, solubilized in lauryl maltose neopentyl glycol, and purified with a combination of affinity and size-exclusion chromatography. We found that the complex is fully functional and that the stoichiometry of Rho* to Gα T * is 1:1. The molecular weight of the complex was calculated from small-angle X-ray scattering data and was in good agreement with a model consisting of one Rho* and one G T *. The complex was visualized by negative-stain electron microscopy, which revealed an architecture similar to that of the β 2 -adrenergic receptor-G S complex, including a flexible α T * helical domain. The stability and high yield of the purified complex should allow for further efforts toward obtaining a high-resolution structure of this important signaling complex. © 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  20. Protein change in plant evolution: tracing one thread connecting molecular and phenotypic diversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Madelaine eBartlett

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Proteins change over the course of evolutionary time. New protein-coding genes and gene families emerge and diversify, ultimately affecting an organism’s phenotype and interactions with its environment. Here we survey the range of structural protein change observed in plants and review the role these changes have had in the evolution of plant form and function. Verified examples tying evolutionary change in protein structure to phenotypic change remain scarce. We will review the existing examples, as well as draw from investigations into domestication, and quantitative trait locus (QTL cloning studies searching for the molecular underpinnings of natural variation. The evolutionary significance of many cloned QTL has not been assessed, but all the examples identified so far have begun to reveal the extent of protein structural diversity tolerated in natural systems. This molecular (and phenotypic diversity could come to represent part of natural selection’s source material in the adaptive evolution of novel traits. Protein structure and function can change in many distinct ways, but the changes we identified in studies of natural diversity and protein evolution were predicted to fall primarily into one of six categories: altered active and binding sites; hypomorphic and hypermorphic alleles; altered protein-protein interactions; altered domain content; altered protein stability; and altered activity as an activator or repressor. Variability was also observed in the evolutionary scale at which particular changes were observed. Some changes were detected at both micro- and macroevolutionary timescales, while others were observed primarily at deep or shallow phylogenetic levels. This variation might be used to determine the trajectory of future investigations in structural molecular evolution.

  1. Nanoparticle-mediated rhodopsin cDNA but not intron-containing DNA delivery causes transgene silencing in a rhodopsin knockout model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Min; Mitra, Rajendra N; Filonov, Nazar A; Han, Zongchao

    2016-03-01

    Previously, we compared the efficacy of nanoparticle (NP)-mediated intron-containing rhodopsin (sgRho) vs. intronless cDNA in ameliorating retinal disease phenotypes in a rhodopsin knockout (RKO) mouse model of retinitis pigmentosa. We showed that NP-mediated sgRho delivery achieved long-term expression and phenotypic improvement in RKO mice, but not NP housing cDNA. However, the protein level of the NP-sgRho construct was only 5-10% of wild-type at 8 mo postinjection. To have a better understanding of the reduced levels of long-term expression of the vectors, in the present study, we evaluated the epigenetic changes of subretinal delivering NP-cDNA vs. NP-sgRho in the RKO mouse eyes. Following the administration, DNA methylation and histone status of specific regions (bacteria plasmid backbone, promoter, rhodopsin gene, and scaffold/matrix attachment region) of the vectors were evaluated at various time points. We documented that epigenetic transgene silencing occurred in vector-mediated gene transfer, which were caused by the plasmid backbone and the cDNA of the transgene, but not the intron-containing transgene. No toxicity or inflammation was found in the treated eyes. Our results suggest that cDNA of the rhodopsin transgene and bacteria backbone interfered with the host defense mechanism of DNA methylation-mediated transgene silencing through heterochromatin-associated modifications. © FASEB.

  2. Molecular representation of molar domain (volume), evolution equations, and linear constitutive relations for volume transport.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eu, Byung Chan

    2008-09-07

    In the traditional theories of irreversible thermodynamics and fluid mechanics, the specific volume and molar volume have been interchangeably used for pure fluids, but in this work we show that they should be distinguished from each other and given distinctive statistical mechanical representations. In this paper, we present a general formula for the statistical mechanical representation of molecular domain (volume or space) by using the Voronoi volume and its mean value that may be regarded as molar domain (volume) and also the statistical mechanical representation of volume flux. By using their statistical mechanical formulas, the evolution equations of volume transport are derived from the generalized Boltzmann equation of fluids. Approximate solutions of the evolution equations of volume transport provides kinetic theory formulas for the molecular domain, the constitutive equations for molar domain (volume) and volume flux, and the dissipation of energy associated with volume transport. Together with the constitutive equation for the mean velocity of the fluid obtained in a previous paper, the evolution equations for volume transport not only shed a fresh light on, and insight into, irreversible phenomena in fluids but also can be applied to study fluid flow problems in a manner hitherto unavailable in fluid dynamics and irreversible thermodynamics. Their roles in the generalized hydrodynamics will be considered in the sequel.

  3. Transient Evolutional Dynamics of Quantum-Dot Molecular Phase Coherence for Sensitive Optical Switching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Jian Qi; Gu, Jing

    2018-04-01

    Atomic phase coherence (quantum interference) in a multilevel atomic gas exhibits a number of interesting phenomena. Such an atomic quantum coherence effect can be generalized to a quantum-dot molecular dielectric. Two quantum dots form a quantum-dot molecule, which can be described by a three-level Λ-configuration model { |0> ,|1> ,|2> } , i.e., the ground state of the molecule is the lower level |0> and the highly degenerate electronic states in the two quantum dots are the two upper levels |1> ,|2> . The electromagnetic characteristics due to the |0>-|1> transition can be controllably manipulated by a tunable gate voltage (control field) that drives the |2>-|1> transition. When the gate voltage is switched on, the quantum-dot molecular state can evolve from one steady state (i.e., |0>-|1> two-level dressed state) to another steady state (i.e., three-level coherent-population-trapping state). In this process, the electromagnetic characteristics of a quantum-dot molecular dielectric, which is modified by the gate voltage, will also evolve. In this study, the transient evolutional behavior of the susceptibility of a quantum-dot molecular thin film and its reflection spectrum are treated by using the density matrix formulation of the multilevel systems. The present field-tunable and frequency-sensitive electromagnetic characteristics of a quantum-dot molecular thin film, which are sensitive to the applied gate voltage, can be utilized to design optical switching devices.

  4. The molecular clock of neutral evolution can be accelerated or slowed by asymmetric spatial structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Benjamin; Sample, Christine; Dementieva, Yulia; Medeiros, Ruben C; Paoletti, Christopher; Nowak, Martin A

    2015-02-01

    Over time, a population acquires neutral genetic substitutions as a consequence of random drift. A famous result in population genetics asserts that the rate, K, at which these substitutions accumulate in the population coincides with the mutation rate, u, at which they arise in individuals: K = u. This identity enables genetic sequence data to be used as a "molecular clock" to estimate the timing of evolutionary events. While the molecular clock is known to be perturbed by selection, it is thought that K = u holds very generally for neutral evolution. Here we show that asymmetric spatial population structure can alter the molecular clock rate for neutral mutations, leading to either Ku. Our results apply to a general class of haploid, asexually reproducing, spatially structured populations. Deviations from K = u occur because mutations arise unequally at different sites and have different probabilities of fixation depending on where they arise. If birth rates are uniform across sites, then K ≤ u. In general, K can take any value between 0 and Nu. Our model can be applied to a variety of population structures. In one example, we investigate the accumulation of genetic mutations in the small intestine. In another application, we analyze over 900 Twitter networks to study the effect of network topology on the fixation of neutral innovations in social evolution.

  5. The molecular clock of neutral evolution can be accelerated or slowed by asymmetric spatial structure.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin Allen

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Over time, a population acquires neutral genetic substitutions as a consequence of random drift. A famous result in population genetics asserts that the rate, K, at which these substitutions accumulate in the population coincides with the mutation rate, u, at which they arise in individuals: K = u. This identity enables genetic sequence data to be used as a "molecular clock" to estimate the timing of evolutionary events. While the molecular clock is known to be perturbed by selection, it is thought that K = u holds very generally for neutral evolution. Here we show that asymmetric spatial population structure can alter the molecular clock rate for neutral mutations, leading to either Ku. Our results apply to a general class of haploid, asexually reproducing, spatially structured populations. Deviations from K = u occur because mutations arise unequally at different sites and have different probabilities of fixation depending on where they arise. If birth rates are uniform across sites, then K ≤ u. In general, K can take any value between 0 and Nu. Our model can be applied to a variety of population structures. In one example, we investigate the accumulation of genetic mutations in the small intestine. In another application, we analyze over 900 Twitter networks to study the effect of network topology on the fixation of neutral innovations in social evolution.

  6. The molecular biology and evolution of feline immunodeficiency viruses of cougars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poss, Mary; Ross, Howard; Rodrigo, Allen; Terwee, Julie; VandeWoude, Sue; Biek, Roman

    2008-01-01

    Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) is a lentivirus that has been identified in many members of the family Felidae but domestic cats are the only FIV host in which infection results in disease. We studied FIVpco infection of cougars (Puma concolor) as a model for asymptomatic lentivirus infections to understand the mechanisms of host-virus coexistence. Several natural cougar populations were evaluated to determine if there are any consequences of FIVpco infection on cougar fecundity, survival, or susceptibility to other infections. We have sequenced full length viral genomes and conducted a detailed analysis of viral molecular evolution on these sequences and on genome fragments of serially sampled animals to determine the evolutionary forces experienced by this virus in cougars. In addition, we have evaluated the molecular genetics of FIVpco in a new host, domestic cats, to determine the evolutionary consequences to a host-adapted virus associated with cross-species infection. Our results indicate that there are no significant differences in survival, fecundity or susceptibility to other infections between FIVpco-infected and uninfected cougars. The molecular evolution of FIVpco is characterized by a slower evolutionary rate and an absence of positive selection, but also by proviral and plasma viral loads comparable to those of epidemic lentiviruses such as HIV-1 or FIVfca. Evolutionary and recombination rates and selection profiles change significantly when FIVpco replicates in a new host. PMID:18295904

  7. Molecular evolution and diversification of snake toxin genes, revealed by analysis of intron sequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujimi, T J; Nakajyo, T; Nishimura, E; Ogura, E; Tsuchiya, T; Tamiya, T

    2003-08-14

    The genes encoding erabutoxin (short chain neurotoxin) isoforms (Ea, Eb, and Ec), LsIII (long chain neurotoxin) and a novel long chain neurotoxin pseudogene were cloned from a Laticauda semifasciata genomic library. Short and long chain neurotoxin genes were also cloned from the genome of Laticauda laticaudata, a closely related species of L. semifasciata, by PCR. A putative matrix attached region (MAR) sequence was found in the intron I of the LsIII gene. Comparative analysis of 11 structurally relevant snake toxin genes (three-finger-structure toxins) revealed the molecular evolution of these toxins. Three-finger-structure toxin genes diverged from a common ancestor through two types of evolutionary pathways (long and short types), early in the course of evolution. At a later stage of evolution in each gene, the accumulation of mutations in the exons, especially exon II, by accelerated evolution may have caused the increased diversification in their functions. It was also revealed that the putative MAR sequence found in the LsIII gene was integrated into the gene after the species-level divergence.

  8. Molecular dynamics simulations of the structure evolutions of Cu-Zr metallic glasses under irradiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lang, Lin [College of Materials Science and Engineering, Hunan University, Changsha 410082 (China); Department of Applied Physics, School of Physics and Electronics, Hunan University, Changsha 410082 (China); Tian, Zean; Xiao, Shifang [Department of Applied Physics, School of Physics and Electronics, Hunan University, Changsha 410082 (China); Deng, Huiqiu, E-mail: hqdeng@hnu.edu.cn [Department of Applied Physics, School of Physics and Electronics, Hunan University, Changsha 410082 (China); Ao, Bingyun [Science and Technology on Surface Physics and Chemistry Laboratory, Mianyang 621907 (China); Chen, Piheng, E-mail: chenpiheng@caep.cn [Science and Technology on Surface Physics and Chemistry Laboratory, Mianyang 621907 (China); Hu, Wangyu [College of Materials Science and Engineering, Hunan University, Changsha 410082 (China)

    2017-02-15

    Highlights: • The structural evolution of Cu{sub 64.5}Zr{sub 35.5} MG under irradiation was studied. • The structure clusters were analyzed using the LSCA method. • Most of these radiation damages have been self-recovered quickly. - Abstract: Molecular dynamics simulations have been performed to investigate the structural evolution of Cu{sub 64.5}Zr{sub 35.5} metallic glasses under irradiation. The largest standard cluster analysis (LSCA) method was used to quantify the microstructure within the collision cascade regions. It is found that the majority of clusters within the collision cascade regions are full and defective icosahedrons. Not only the smaller structures (common neighbor subcluster) but also primary clusters greatly changed during the collision cascades; while most of these radiation damages self-recover quickly in the following quench states. These findings indicate the Cu-Zr metallic glasses have excellent irradiation-resistance properties.

  9. Bioinspired molecular co-catalysts bonded to a silicon photocathode for solar hydrogen evolution

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hou, Yidong; Abrams, Billie L.; Vesborg, Peter Christian Kjærgaard

    2011-01-01

    The production of fuels from sunlight represents one of the main challenges in the development of a sustainable energy system. Hydrogen is the simplest fuel to produce and although platinum and other noble metals are efficient catalysts for photoelectrochemical hydrogen evolution, earth...... that harvests red photons in the solar spectrum. The current densities at the reversible potential match the requirement of a photoelectrochemical hydrogen production system with a solar-to-hydrogen efficiency in excess of 10% (ref. 16). The experimental observations are supported by density functional theory......-abundant alternatives are needed for large-scale use. We show that bioinspired molecular clusters based on molybdenum and sulphur evolve hydrogen at rates comparable to that of platinum. The incomplete cubane-like clusters (Mo3S 4) efficiently catalyse the evolution of hydrogen when coupled to a p-type Si semiconductor...

  10. Structural evolution of dilute magnetic (Sn,Mn)Se films grown by molecular beam epitaxy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanzyuba, Vasily; Dong, Sining; Liu, Xinyu; Li, Xiang; Rouvimov, Sergei; Okuno, Hanako; Mariette, Henri; Zhang, Xueqiang; Ptasinska, Sylwia; Tracy, Brian D.; Smith, David J.; Dobrowolska, Margaret; Furdyna, Jacek K.

    2017-02-01

    We describe the structural evolution of dilute magnetic (Sn,Mn)Se films grown by molecular beam epitaxy on GaAs (111) substrates, as revealed by transmission electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction, and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. When the Mn concentration is increased, the lattice of the ternary (Sn,Mn)Se films evolves quasi-coherently from a SnSe2 two-dimensional (2D) crystal structure into a more complex quasi-2D lattice rearrangement, ultimately transforming into the magnetically concentrated antiferromagnetic MnSe 3D rock-salt structure as Mn approaches 50 at. % of this material. These structural transformations are expected to underlie the evolution of magnetic properties of this ternary system reported earlier in the literature.

  11. PAL: an object-oriented programming library for molecular evolution and phylogenetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drummond, A; Strimmer, K

    2001-07-01

    Phylogenetic Analysis Library (PAL) is a collection of Java classes for use in molecular evolution and phylogenetics. PAL provides a modular environment for the rapid construction of both special-purpose and general analysis programs. PAL version 1.1 consists of 145 public classes or interfaces in 13 packages, including classes for models of character evolution, maximum-likelihood estimation, and the coalescent, with a total of more than 27000 lines of code. The PAL project is set up as a collaborative project to facilitate contributions from other researchers. AVAILIABILTY: The program is free and is available at http://www.pal-project.org. It requires Java 1.1 or later. PAL is licensed under the GNU General Public License.

  12. Combined solid state and solution NMR studies of α,ε-15N labeled bovine rhodopsin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Werner, Karla; Lehner, Ines; Dhiman, Harpreet Kaur; Richter, Christian; Glaubitz, Clemens; Schwalbe, Harald; Klein-Seetharaman, Judith; Khorana, H. Gobind

    2007-01-01

    Rhodopsin is the visual pigment of the vertebrate rod photoreceptor cell and is the only member of the G protein coupled receptor family for which a crystal structure is available. Towards the study of dynamics in rhodopsin, we report NMR-spectroscopic investigations of α,ε- 15 N-tryptophan labeled rhodopsin in detergent micelles and reconstituted in phospholipids. Using a combination of solid state 13 C, 15 N-REDOR and HETCOR experiments of all possible 13 C' i-1 carbonyl/ 15 N i -tryptophan isotope labeled amide pairs, and H/D exchange 1 H, 15 N-HSQC experiments conducted in solution, we assigned chemical shifts to all five rhodopsin tryptophan backbone 15 N nuclei and partially to their bound protons. 1 H, 15 N chemical shift assignment was achieved for indole side chains of Trp35 1.30 and Trp175 4.65 . 15 N chemical shifts were found to be similar when comparing those obtained in the native like reconstituted lipid environment and those obtained in detergent micelles for all tryptophans except Trp175 4.65 at the membrane interface. The results suggest that the integrated solution and solid state NMR approach presented provides highly complementary information in the study of structure and dynamics of large membrane proteins like rhodopsin

  13. Study of the orientation of retinal in bovine rhodopsin: the use of a photoactivatable retinal analog

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nakayama, T.

    1987-01-01

    Rhodopsin is the major transmembrane protein in the photoreceptor cells of vertebrate and invertebrate retina. Bovine rhodopsin consists of a polypeptide chain of 348 amino acids of known sequence in which the chromophore, 11-cis-retinal, is linked to Lys-296 as a Schiff base. To investigate the orientation of retinal in the protein and to study the interactions between retinal and the protein, the authors have developed a crosslinking approach using a 3 H-labeled photoactivatable analog of retinal. Bleached rhodopsin in rod outer segments was reconstituted with the analog to give a pigment with λ/sub max/ at 460nm. Reduction of the Schiff base with borane dimenthylamine, followed by degradation with CNBr and sequencing of the radioactive fragment showed that the analog is attached to Lys-296, as in the native rhodopsin. Further, the reconstitute protein after photolysis was phosphorylated by rhodopsin kinase. Photolysis of the reconstituted pigment at -15 0 C resulted in crosslinking of the analog to the opsin to the extent of 30% as analyzed by SDS electrophoresis. The site(s) of crosslinking in the protein are under investigation

  14. Contrasted patterns of molecular evolution in dominant and recessive self-incompatibility haplotypes in Arabidopsis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pauline M Goubet

    Full Text Available Self-incompatibility has been considered by geneticists a model system for reproductive biology and balancing selection, but our understanding of the genetic basis and evolution of this molecular lock-and-key system has remained limited by the extreme level of sequence divergence among haplotypes, resulting in a lack of appropriate genomic sequences. In this study, we report and analyze the full sequence of eleven distinct haplotypes of the self-incompatibility locus (S-locus in two closely related Arabidopsis species, obtained from individual BAC libraries. We use this extensive dataset to highlight sharply contrasted patterns of molecular evolution of each of the two genes controlling self-incompatibility themselves, as well as of the genomic region surrounding them. We find strong collinearity of the flanking regions among haplotypes on each side of the S-locus together with high levels of sequence similarity. In contrast, the S-locus region itself shows spectacularly deep gene genealogies, high variability in size and gene organization, as well as complete absence of sequence similarity in intergenic sequences and striking accumulation of transposable elements. Of particular interest, we demonstrate that dominant and recessive S-haplotypes experience sharply contrasted patterns of molecular evolution. Indeed, dominant haplotypes exhibit larger size and a much higher density of transposable elements, being matched only by that in the centromere. Overall, these properties highlight that the S-locus presents many striking similarities with other regions involved in the determination of mating-types, such as sex chromosomes in animals or in plants, or the mating-type locus in fungi and green algae.

  15. Molecular basis for convergent evolution of glutamate recognition by pentameric ligand-gated ion channels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lynagh, Timothy; Beech, Robin N.; Lalande, Maryline J.

    2015-01-01

    that glutamate recognition requires an arginine residue in the base of the binding site, which originated at least three distinct times according to phylogenetic analysis. Most remarkably, the arginine emerged on the principal face of the binding site in the Lophotrochozoan lineage, but 65 amino acids upstream......Glutamate is an indispensable neurotransmitter, triggering postsynaptic signals upon recognition by postsynaptic receptors. We questioned the phylogenetic position and the molecular details of when and where glutamate recognition arose in the glutamate-gated chloride channels. Experiments revealed......, on the complementary face, in the Ecdysozoan lineage. This combined experimental and computational approach throws new light on the evolution of synaptic signalling....

  16. Scanning laser ophthalmoscope measurement of local fundus reflectance and autofluorescence changes arising from rhodopsin bleaching and regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgan, Jessica I W; Pugh, Edward N

    2013-03-01

    We measured the bleaching and regeneration kinetics of rhodopsin in the living human eye with two-wavelength, wide-field scanning laser ophthalmoscopy (SLO), and investigated the effect of rhodopsin bleaching on autofluorescence intensity. The retina was imaged with an Optos P200C SLO by its reflectance of 532 and 633 nm light, and its autofluorescence excited by 532 nm light, before and after exposure to lights calibrated to bleach rhodopsin substantially. Bleaching was confined to circular retinal regions of 4.8° visual angle located approximately 16° superotemporal and superonasal to fixation. Images were captured as 12-bit tiff files and postprocessed to extract changes in reflectance and autofluorescence. At the locus of bleaching transient increases in reflectance of the 532 nm, but not the 633 nm beam were observed readily and quantified. A transient increase in autofluorescence also occurred. The action spectrum, absolute sensitivity, and recovery of the 532 nm reflectance increase were consistent with previous measurements of human rhodopsin's spectral sensitivity, photosensitivity, and regeneration kinetics. The autofluorescence changes closely tracked the changes in rhodopsin density. The bleaching and regeneration kinetics of rhodopsin can be measured locally in the human retina with a widely available SLO. The increased autofluorescence excited by 532 nm light upon bleaching appears primarily due to transient elimination of rhodopsin's screening of autofluorescent fluorochromes in the RPE. The spatially localized measurement with a widely available SLO of rhodopsin, the most abundant protein in the retina, could be a valuable adjunct to retinal health assessment.

  17. Inferring clocks when lacking rocks: the variable rates of molecular evolution in bacteria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ochman Howard

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Because bacteria do not have a robust fossil record, attempts to infer the timing of events in their evolutionary history requires comparisons of molecular sequences. This use of molecular clocks is based on the assumptions that substitution rates for homologous genes or sites are fairly constant through time and across taxa. Violation of these conditions can lead to erroneous inferences and result in estimates that are off by orders of magnitude. In this study, we examine the consistency of substitution rates among a set of conserved genes in diverse bacterial lineages, and address the questions regarding the validity of molecular dating. Results By examining the evolution of 16S rRNA gene in obligate endosymbionts, which can be calibrated by the fossil record of their hosts, we found that the rates are consistent within a clade but varied widely across different bacterial lineages. Genome-wide estimates of nonsynonymous and synonymous substitutions suggest that these two measures are highly variable in their rates across bacterial taxa. Genetic drift plays a fundamental role in determining the accumulation of substitutions in 16S rRNA genes and at nonsynonymous sites. Moreover, divergence estimates based on a set of universally conserved protein-coding genes also exhibit low correspondence to those based on 16S rRNA genes. Conclusion Our results document a wide range of substitution rates across genes and bacterial taxa. This high level of variation cautions against the assumption of a universal molecular clock for inferring divergence times in bacteria. However, by applying relative-rate tests to homologous genes, it is possible to derive reliable local clocks that can be used to calibrate bacterial evolution. Reviewers This article was reviewed by Adam Eyre-Walker, Simonetta Gribaldo and Tal Pupko (nominated by Dan Graur.

  18. Molecular pathways to parallel evolution: I. Gene nexuses and their morphological correlates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zuckerkandl, E

    1994-12-01

    Aspects of the regulatory interactions among genes are probably as old as most genes are themselves. Correspondingly, similar predispositions to changes in such interactions must have existed for long evolutionary periods. Features of the structure and the evolution of the system of gene regulation furnish the background necessary for a molecular understanding of parallel evolution. Patently "unrelated" organs, such as the fat body of a fly and the liver of a mammal, can exhibit fractional homology, a fraction expected to become subject to quantitation. This also seems to hold for different organs in the same organism, such as wings and legs of a fly. In informational macromolecules, on the other hand, homology is indeed all or none. In the quite different case of organs, analogy is expected usually to represent attenuated homology. Many instances of putative convergence are likely to turn out to be predominantly parallel evolution, presumably including the case of the vertebrate and cephalopod eyes. Homology in morphological features reflects a similarity in networks of active genes. Similar nexuses of active genes can be established in cells of different embryological origins. Thus, parallel development can be considered a counterpart to parallel evolution. Specific macromolecular interactions leading to the regulation of the c-fos gene are given as an example of a "controller node" defined as a regulatory unit. Quantitative changes in gene control are distinguished from relational changes, and frequent parallelism in quantitative changes is noted in Drosophila enzymes. Evolutionary reversions in quantitative gene expression are also expected. The evolution of relational patterns is attributed to several distinct mechanisms, notably the shuffling of protein domains. The growth of such patterns may in part be brought about by a particular process of compensation for "controller gene diseases," a process that would spontaneously tend to lead to increased regulatory

  19. FTIR study of the photoreaction of bovine rhodopsin in the presence of hydroxylamine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katayama, Kota; Furutani, Yuji; Kandori, Hideki

    2010-07-15

    In bovine rhodopsin, 11-cis-retinal forms a Schiff base linkage with Lys296. The Schiff base is not reactive to hydroxylamine in the dark, which is consistent with the well-protected retinal binding site. In contrast, under illumination it easily forms all-trans retinal oxime, resulting in the loss of color. This suggests that activation of rhodopsin creates a specific reaction channel for hydroxylamine or loosens the chromophore binding pocket. In the present study, to extract structural information on the Schiff base vicinity and to understand the changes upon activation of rhodopsin, we compared light-induced FTIR difference spectra of bovine rhodopsin in the presence and absence of hydroxylamine under physiological pH (approximately 7). Although the previous FTIR study did not observe the complex formation between rhodopsin and G-protein transducin in hydrated films, the present study clearly shows that hydrated films can be used for studies of the interaction between rhodopsin and hydroxylamine. Hydroxylamine does not react with the Schiff base of Meta-I intermediate trapped at 240 K, possibly because of decreased conformational motions under the frozen environment, while FTIR spectroscopy showed that hydroxylamine affects the hydrogen bonds of the Schiff base and water molecules in Meta-I. In contrast, formation of the retinal oxime was clearly observed at 280 K, the characteristic temperature of Meta-II accumulation in the absence of hydroxylamine, and time-dependent formation of retinal oxime was observed from Meta-II at 265 K as well. The obtained difference FTIR spectra of retinal oxime and opsin are different from that of Meta-II. It is likely that the antiparallel beta-sheet constituting a part of the retinal binding pocket at the extracellular surface is structurally disrupted in the presence of hydroxylamine, which allows the hydrolysis of the Schiff base into retinal oxime.

  20. Molecular Evolution of Aralkylamine N-Acetyltransferase in Fish: A Genomic Survey

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jia Li

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available All living organisms synchronize biological functions with environmental changes; melatonin plays a vital role in regulating daily and seasonal variations. Due to rhythmic activity of the timezyme aralkylamine N-acetyltransferase (AANAT, the blood level of melatonin increases at night and decreases during daytime. Whereas other vertebrates have a single form of AANAT, bony fishes possess various isoforms of aanat genes, though the reasons are still unclear. Here, we have taken advantage of multiple unpublished teleost aanat sequences to explore and expand our understanding of the molecular evolution of aanat in fish. Our results confirm that two rounds of whole-genome duplication (WGD led to the existence of three fish isoforms of aanat, i.e., aanat1a, aanat1b, and aanat2; in addition, gene loss led to the absence of some forms from certain special fish species. Furthermore, we suggest the different roles of two aanat1s in amphibious mudskippers, and speculate that the loss of aanat1a, may be related to terrestrial vision change. Several important sites of AANAT proteins and regulatory elements of aanat genes were analyzed for structural comparison and functional forecasting, respectively, which provides insights into the molecular evolution of the differences between AANAT1 and AANAT2.

  1. Molecular Evolution of the Infrared Sensory Gene TRPA1 in Snakes and Implications for Functional Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Ke; Zhang, Peng

    2011-01-01

    TRPA1 is a calcium ion channel protein recently identified as the infrared receptor in pit organ-containing snakes. Therefore, understanding the molecular evolution of TRPA1 may help to illuminate the origin of “heat vision” in snakes and reveal the molecular mechanism of infrared sensitivity for TRPA1. To this end, we sequenced the infrared sensory gene TRPA1 in 24 snake species, representing nine snake families and multiple non-snake outgroups. We found that TRPA1 is under strong positive selection in the pit-bearing snakes studied, but not in other non-pit snakes and non-snake vertebrates. As a comparison, TRPV1, a gene closely related to TRPA1, was found to be under strong purifying selection in all the species studied, with no difference in the strength of selection between pit-bearing snakes and non-pit snakes. This finding demonstrates that the adaptive evolution of TRPA1 specifically occurred within the pit-bearing snakes and may be related to the functional modification for detecting infrared radiation. In addition, by comparing the TRPA1 protein sequences, we identified 11 amino acid sites that were diverged in pit-bearing snakes but conserved in non-pit snakes and other vertebrates, 21 sites that were diverged only within pit-vipers but conserved in the remaining snakes. These specific amino acid substitutions may be potentially functional important for infrared sensing. PMID:22163322

  2. Spectrum of rhodopsin mutations in Korean patients with retinitis pigmentosa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Kwang Joong; Kim, Cinoo; Bok, Jeong; Kim, Kyung-Seon; Lee, Eun-Ju; Park, Sung Pyo; Chung, Hum; Han, Bok-Ghee; Kim, Hyung-Lae; Kimm, Kuchan; Yu, Hyeong Gon

    2011-01-01

    Purpose To determine the spectrum and frequency of rhodopsin gene (RHO) mutations in Korean patients with retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and to characterize genotype–phenotype correlations in patients with mutations. Methods The RHO mutations were screened by direct sequencing, and mutation prevalence was measured in patients and controls. The impact of missense mutations to RP was predicted by segregation analysis, peptide sequence alignment, and in silico analysis. The severity of disease in patients with the missense mutations was compared by visual acuity, electroretinography, optical coherence tomography, and kinetic visual field testing. Results Five heterozygous mutations were identified in six of 302 probands with RP, including a novel mutation (c.893C>A, p.A298D) and four known mutations (c.50C>T, p.T17M; c.533A>G, p.Y178C; c.888G>T, p.K296N; and c.1040C>T, p.P347L). The allele frequency of missense mutations was measured in 114 ethnically matched controls. p.A298D, newly identified in a sporadic patient, had never been found in controls and was predicted to be pathogenic. Among the patients with the missense mutations, we observed the most severe phenotype in patients with p.P347L, less severe phenotypes in patients with p.Y178C or p.A298D, and a relatively moderate phenotype in a patient with p.T17M. Conclusions The results reveal the spectrum of RHO mutations in Korean RP patients and clinical features that vary according to mutations. Our findings will be useful for understanding these genetic spectra and the genotype–phenotype correlations and will therefore help with predicting disease prognosis and facilitating the development of gene therapy. PMID:21677794

  3. Near neutrality: leading edge of the neutral theory of molecular evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Austin L

    2008-01-01

    The nearly neutral theory represents a development of Kimura's neutral theory of molecular evolution that makes testable predictions that go beyond a mere null model. Recent evidence has strongly supported several of these predictions, including the prediction that slightly deleterious variants will accumulate in a species that has undergone a severe bottleneck or in cases where recombination is reduced or absent. Because bottlenecks often occur in speciation and slightly deleterious mutations in coding regions will usually be nonsynonymous, we should expect that the ratio of nonsynonymous to synonymous fixed differences between species should often exceed the ratio of nonsynonymous to synonymous polymorphisms within species. Many data support this prediction, although they have often been wrongly interpreted as evidence for positive Darwinian selection. The use of conceptually flawed tests for positive selection has become widespread in recent years, seriously harming the quest for an understanding of genome evolution. When properly analyzed, many (probably most) claimed cases of positive selection will turn out to involve the fixation of slightly deleterious mutations by genetic drift in bottlenecked populations. Slightly deleterious variants are a transient feature of evolution in the long term, but they have substantially affected contemporary species, including our own.

  4. Molecular development of fibular reduction in birds and its evolution from dinosaurs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Botelho, João Francisco; Smith-Paredes, Daniel; Soto-Acuña, Sergio; O'Connor, Jingmai; Palma, Verónica; Vargas, Alexander O

    2016-03-01

    Birds have a distally reduced, splinter-like fibula that is shorter than the tibia. In embryonic development, both skeletal elements start out with similar lengths. We examined molecular markers of cartilage differentiation in chicken embryos. We found that the distal end of the fibula expresses Indian hedgehog (IHH), undergoing terminal cartilage differentiation, and almost no Parathyroid-related protein (PTHrP), which is required to develop a proliferative growth plate (epiphysis). Reduction of the distal fibula may be influenced earlier by its close contact with the nearby fibulare, which strongly expresses PTHrP. The epiphysis-like fibulare however then separates from the fibula, which fails to maintain a distal growth plate, and fibular reduction ensues. Experimental downregulation of IHH signaling at a postmorphogenetic stage led to a tibia and fibula of equal length: The fibula is longer than in controls and fused to the fibulare, whereas the tibia is shorter and bent. We propose that the presence of a distal fibular epiphysis may constrain greater growth in the tibia. Accordingly, many Mesozoic birds show a fibula that has lost its distal epiphysis, but remains almost as long as the tibia, suggesting that loss of the fibulare preceded and allowed subsequent evolution of great fibulo-tibial disparity. © 2016 The Author(s). Evolution published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  5. Molecular Evolution at a Meiosis Gene Mediates Species Differences in the Rate and Patterning of Recombination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brand, Cara L; Cattani, M Victoria; Kingan, Sarah B; Landeen, Emily L; Presgraves, Daven C

    2018-04-23

    Crossing over between homologous chromosomes during meiosis repairs programmed DNA double-strand breaks, ensures proper segregation at meiosis I [1], shapes the genomic distribution of nucleotide variability in populations, and enhances the efficacy of natural selection among genetically linked sites [2]. Between closely related Drosophila species, large differences exist in the rate and chromosomal distribution of crossing over. Little, however, is known about the molecular genetic changes or population genetic forces that mediate evolved differences in recombination between species [3, 4]. Here, we show that a meiosis gene with a history of rapid evolution acts as a trans-acting modifier of species differences in crossing over. In transgenic flies, the dicistronic gene, mei-217/mei-218, recapitulates a large part of the species differences in the rate and chromosomal distribution of crossing over. These phenotypic differences appear to result from changes in protein sequence not gene expression. Our population genetics analyses show that the protein-coding sequence of mei-218, but not mei-217, has a history of recurrent positive natural selection. By modulating the intensity of centromeric and telomeric suppression of crossing over, evolution at mei-217/-218 has incidentally shaped gross differences in the chromosomal distribution of nucleotide variability between species. We speculate that recurrent bouts of adaptive evolution at mei-217/-218 might reflect a history of coevolution with selfish genetic elements. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Rates of molecular evolution in tree ferns are associated with body size, environmental temperature, and biological productivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrera-Redondo, Josué; Ramírez-Barahona, Santiago; Eguiarte, Luis E

    2018-05-01

    Variation in rates of molecular evolution (heterotachy) is a common phenomenon among plants. Although multiple theoretical models have been proposed, fundamental questions remain regarding the combined effects of ecological and morphological traits on rate heterogeneity. Here, we used tree ferns to explore the correlation between rates of molecular evolution in chloroplast DNA sequences and several morphological and environmental factors within a Bayesian framework. We revealed direct and indirect effects of body size, biological productivity, and temperature on substitution rates, where smaller tree ferns living in warmer and less productive environments tend to have faster rates of molecular evolution. In addition, we found that variation in the ratio of nonsynonymous to synonymous substitution rates (dN/dS) in the chloroplast rbcL gene was significantly correlated with ecological and morphological variables. Heterotachy in tree ferns may be influenced by effective population size associated with variation in body size and productivity. Macroevolutionary hypotheses should go beyond explaining heterotachy in terms of mutation rates and instead, should integrate population-level factors to better understand the processes affecting the tempo of evolution at the molecular level. © 2018 The Author(s). Evolution © 2018 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  7. Evolution of the protists and protistan parasites from the perspective of molecular systematics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sogin, M L; Silberman, J D

    1998-01-01

    Unlike prokaryotes, the Protista are rich in morphological and ultrastructure information. Their amazing phenotypic diversity permits assignment of many protists to cohesive phyletic assemblages but sometimes blurs relationships between major lineages. With the advent of molecular techniques, it became possible to test evolutionary hypotheses that were originally formulated according to shared phenotypic traits. More than any other gene family, studies of rRNAs changed our understanding of protist evolution. Stramenopiles (oomycetes, chrysophytes, phaeophytes, synurophytes, diatoms, xanthophytes, bicosoecids, slime nets) and alveolates (dinoflagellates, apicomplexans, ciliates) are two novel, complex evolutionary assemblages which diverged nearly simultaneously with animals, fungi, plants, rhodophytes, haptophytes and a myriad of independent amoeboid lineages. Their separation may have occurred one billion years ago and collectively these lineages make up the "crown" of the eukaryotic tree. Deeper branches in the eukaryotic tree show 16S-like rRNA sequence variation that is much greater than that observed within the Archaea and the Bacteria. A progression of independent protist branches, some as ancient as the divergence between the two prokaryotic domains, preceded the sudden radiation of "crown" groups. Trichomonads, diplomonads and Microsporidia are basal to all other eukaryotes included in rRNA studies. Together with pelobionts, oxymonads, retortamonads and hypermastigids, these amitochondriate taxa comprise the Archaezoa. This skeletal phylogeny suggested that early branching eukaryotes lacked mitochondria, peroxisomes and typical stacked Golgi dictyosomes. However, recent studies of heat shock proteins indicate that the first eukaryotes may have had mitochondria. When evaluated in terms of evolution of ultrastructure, lifestyles and other phenotypic traits, the rRNA phylogenies provide the most consistent of molecular trees. They permit identification of the

  8. Molecular Evolution of Two Distinct dmrt1 Promoters for Germ and Somatic Cells in Vertebrate Gonads.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mawaribuchi, Shuuji; Musashijima, Masato; Wada, Mikako; Izutsu, Yumi; Kurakata, Erina; Park, Min Kyun; Takamatsu, Nobuhiko; Ito, Michihiko

    2017-03-01

    The transcription factor DMRT1 has important functions in two distinct processes, somatic-cell masculinization and germ-cell development in mammals. However, it is unknown whether the functions are conserved during evolution, and what mechanism underlies its expression in the two cell lineages. Our analysis of the Xenopus laevis and Silurana tropicalis dmrt1 genes indicated the presence of two distinct promoters: one upstream of the noncoding first exon (ncEx1), and one within the first intron. In contrast, only the ncEx1-upstream promoter was detected in the dmrt1 gene of the agnathan sand lamprey, which expressed dmrt1 exclusively in the germ cells. In X. laevis, the ncEx1- and exon 2-upstream promoters were predominantly used for germ-cell and somatic-cell transcription, respectively. Importantly, knockdown of the ncEx1-containing transcript led to reduced germ-cell numbers in X. laevis gonads. Intriguingly, two genetically female individuals carrying the knockdown construct developed testicles. Analysis of the reptilian leopard gecko dmrt1 revealed the absence of ncEx1. We propose that dmrt1 regulated germ-cell development in the vertebrate ancestor, then acquired another promoter in its first intron to regulate somatic-cell masculinization during gnathostome evolution. In the common ancestor of reptiles and mammals, only one promoter got function for both the two cell lineages, accompanied with the loss of ncEx1. In addition, we found a conserved noncoding sequence (CNS) in the dmrt1 5'-flanking regions only among amniote species, and two CNSs in the introns among most vertebrates except for agnathans. Finally, we discuss relationships between these CNSs and the promoters of dmrt1 during vertebrate evolution. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  9. Molecular evolution of the Paramyxoviridae and Rhabdoviridae multiple-protein-encoding P gene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jordan, I K; Sutter, B A; McClure, M A

    2000-01-01

    Presented here is an analysis of the molecular evolutionary dynamics of the P gene among 76 representative sequences of the Paramyxoviridae and Rhabdoviridae RNA virus families. In a number of Paramyxoviridae taxa, as well as in vesicular stomatitis viruses of the Rhabdoviridae, the P gene encodes multiple proteins from a single genomic RNA sequence. These products include the phosphoprotein (P), as well as the C and V proteins. The complexity of the P gene makes it an intriguing locus to study from an evolutionary perspective. Amino acid sequence alignments of the proteins encoded at the P and N loci were used in independent phylogenetic reconstructions of the Paramyxoviridae and Rhabdoviridae families. P-gene-coding capacities were mapped onto the Paramyxoviridae phylogeny, and the most parsimonious path of multiple-coding-capacity evolution was determined. Levels of amino acid variation for Paramyxoviridae and Rhabdoviridae P-gene-encoded products were also analyzed. Proteins encoded in overlapping reading frames from the same nucleotides have different levels of amino acid variation. The nucleotide architecture that underlies the amino acid variation was determined in order to evaluate the role of selection in the evolution of the P gene overlapping reading frames. In every case, the evolution of one of the proteins encoded in the overlapping reading frames has been constrained by negative selection while the other has evolved more rapidly. The integrity of the overlapping reading frame that represents a derived state is generally maintained at the expense of the ancestral reading frame encoded by the same nucleotides. The evolution of such multicoding sequences is likely a response by RNA viruses to selective pressure to maximize genomic information content while maintaining small genome size. The ability to evolve such a complex genomic strategy is intimately related to the dynamics of the viral quasispecies, which allow enhanced exploration of the adaptive

  10. Molecular evolution of the reactive oxygen-generating NADPH oxidase (Nox/Duox family of enzymes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lambeth J David

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background NADPH-oxidases (Nox and the related Dual oxidases (Duox play varied biological and pathological roles via regulated generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS. Members of the Nox/Duox family have been identified in a wide variety of organisms, including mammals, nematodes, fruit fly, green plants, fungi, and slime molds; however, little is known about the molecular evolutionary history of these enzymes. Results We assembled and analyzed the deduced amino acid sequences of 101 Nox/Duox orthologs from 25 species, including vertebrates, urochordates, echinoderms, insects, nematodes, fungi, slime mold amoeba, alga and plants. In contrast to ROS defense enzymes, such as superoxide dismutase and catalase that are present in prokaryotes, ROS-generating Nox/Duox orthologs only appeared later in evolution. Molecular taxonomy revealed seven distinct subfamilies of Noxes and Duoxes. The calcium-regulated orthologs representing 4 subfamilies diverged early and are the most widely distributed in biology. Subunit-regulated Noxes represent a second major subdivision, and appeared first in fungi and amoeba. Nox5 was lost in rodents, and Nox3, which functions in the inner ear in gravity perception, emerged the most recently, corresponding to full-time adaptation of vertebrates to land. The sea urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus possesses the earliest Nox2 co-ortholog of vertebrate Nox1, 2, and 3, while Nox4 first appeared somewhat later in urochordates. Comparison of evolutionary substitution rates demonstrates that Nox2, the regulatory subunits p47phox and p67phox, and Duox are more stringently conserved in vertebrates than other Noxes and Nox regulatory subunits. Amino acid sequence comparisons identified key catalytic or regulatory regions, as 68 residues were highly conserved among all Nox/Duox orthologs, and 14 of these were identical with those mutated in Nox2 in variants of X-linked chronic granulomatous disease. In addition to

  11. A distance measurement between specific sites on the cytoplasmic surface of bovine rhodopsin in rod outer segment disk membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albert, A D; Watts, A; Spooner, P; Groebner, G; Young, J; Yeagle, P L

    1997-08-14

    Structural information on mammalian integral membrane proteins is scarce. As part of work on an alternative approach to the structure of bovine rhodopsin, a method was devised to obtain an intramolecular distance between two specific sites on rhodopsin while in the rod outer segment disk membrane. In this report, the distance between the rhodopsin kinase phosphorylation site(s) on the carboxyl terminal and the top of the third transmembrane helix was measured on native rhodopsin. Rhodopsin was labeled with a nuclear spin label (31P) by limited phosphorylation with rhodopsin kinase. Major phosphorylation occurs at serines 343 and 338 on the carboxyl terminal. The phosphorylated rhodopsin was then specifically labeled on cysteine 140 with an electron spin label. Magic angle spinning 31P-nuclear magnetic resonance revealed the resonance arising from the phosphorylated protein. The enhancement of the transverse relaxation of this resonance by the paramagnetic spin label was observed. The strength of this perturbation was used to determine the through-space distance between the phosphorylation site(s) and the spin label position. A distance of 18 +/- 3 A was obtained.

  12. Evolution of complex organic molecules in hot molecular cores. Synthetic spectra at (sub-)mm wavebands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choudhury, R.; Schilke, P.; Stéphan, G.; Bergin, E.; Möller, T.; Schmiedeke, A.; Zernickel, A.

    2015-03-01

    Context. Hot molecular cores (HMCs) are intermediate stages of high-mass star formation and are also known for their rich chemical reservoirs and emission line spectra at (sub-)mm wavebands. Complex organic molecules (COMs) such as methanol (CH3OH), ethanol (C2H5OH), dimethyl ether (CH3OCH3), and methyl formate (HCOOCH3) produce most of these observed lines. The observed spectral feature of HMCs such as total number of emission lines and associated line intensities are also found to vary with evolutionary stages. Aims: We aim to investigate the spectral evolution of these COMs to explore the initial evolutionary stages of high-mass star formation including HMCs. Methods: We developed various 3D models for HMCs guided by the evolutionary scenarios proposed by recent empirical and modeling studies. We then investigated the spatio-temporal variation of temperature and molecular abundances in HMCs by consistently coupling gas-grain chemical evolution with radiative transfer calculations. We explored the effects of varying physical conditions on molecular abundances including density distribution and luminosity evolution of the central protostar(s) among other parameters. Finally, we simulated the synthetic spectra for these models at different evolutionary timescales to compare with observations. Results: Temperature has a profound effect on the formation of COMs through the depletion and diffusion on grain surface to desorption and further gas-phase processing. The time-dependent temperature structure of the hot core models provides a realistic framework for investigating the spatial variation of ice mantle evaporation as a function of evolutionary timescales. We find that a slightly higher value (15 K) than the canonical dark cloud temperature (10 K) provides a more productive environment for COM formation on grain surface. With increasing protostellar luminosity, the water ice evaporation font (~100 K) expands and the spatial distribution of gas phase abundances of

  13. Batch crystallization of rhodopsin for structural dynamics using an X-ray free-electron laser

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wu, Wenting; Nogly, Przemyslaw; Rheinberger, Jan; Kick, Leonhard M.; Gati, Cornelius; Nelson, Garrett; Deupi, Xavier; Standfuss, Jörg; Schertler, Gebhard; Panneels, Valérie, E-mail: valerie.panneels@psi.ch [Paul Scherrer Institute, OFLC/103, 5232 Villigen-PSI (Switzerland)

    2015-06-27

    A new batch preparation method is presented for high-density micrometre-sized crystals of the G protein-coupled receptor rhodopsin for use in time-resolved serial femtosecond crystallography at an X-ray free-electron laser using a liquid jet. Rhodopsin is a membrane protein from the G protein-coupled receptor family. Together with its ligand retinal, it forms the visual pigment responsible for night vision. In order to perform ultrafast dynamics studies, a time-resolved serial femtosecond crystallography method is required owing to the nonreversible activation of rhodopsin. In such an approach, microcrystals in suspension are delivered into the X-ray pulses of an X-ray free-electron laser (XFEL) after a precise photoactivation delay. Here, a millilitre batch production of high-density microcrystals was developed by four methodical conversion steps starting from known vapour-diffusion crystallization protocols: (i) screening the low-salt crystallization conditions preferred for serial crystallography by vapour diffusion, (ii) optimization of batch crystallization, (iii) testing the crystal size and quality using second-harmonic generation (SHG) imaging and X-ray powder diffraction and (iv) production of millilitres of rhodopsin crystal suspension in batches for serial crystallography tests; these crystals diffracted at an XFEL at the Linac Coherent Light Source using a liquid-jet setup.

  14. The two parallel photocycles of the Chlamydomonas sensory photoreceptor histidine kinase rhodopsin 1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luck, Meike; Hegemann, Peter

    2017-10-01

    Histidine kinase rhodopsins (HKRs) belong to a class of unexplored sensory photoreceptors that share a similar modular architecture. The light sensing rhodopsin domain is covalently linked to signal-transducing modules and in some cases to a C-terminal guanylyl-cyclase effector. In spite of their wide distribution in unicellular organisms, very little is known about their physiological role and mechanistic functioning. We investigated the photochemical properties of the recombinant rhodopsin-fragment of Cr-HKR1 originating from Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Our spectroscopic studies revealed an unusual thermal stability of the photoproducts with the deprotonated retinal Schiff base (RSB). Upon UV-irradiation these Rh-UV states with maximal absorbance in the UVA-region (Rh-UV) photochemically convert to stable blue light absorbing rhodopsin (Rh-Bl) with protonated chromophore. The heterogeneity of the sample is based on two parallel photocycles with the chromophore in C 15 =N-syn- or -anti-configuration. This report represents an attempt to decipher the underlying reaction schemes and interconversions of the two coexisting photocycles. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  15. Tethering metal ions to photocatalyst particulate surfaces by bifunctional molecular linkers for efficient hydrogen evolution

    KAUST Repository

    Yu, Weili

    2014-08-19

    A simple and versatile method for the preparation of photocatalyst particulates modified with effective cocatalysts is presented; the method involves the sequential soaking of photocatalyst particulates in solutions containing bifunctional organic linkers and metal ions. The modification of the particulate surfaces is a universal and reproducible method because the molecular linkers utilize strong covalent bonds, which in turn result in modified monolayer with a small but controlled quantity of metals. The photocatalysis results indicated that the CdS with likely photochemically reduced Pd and Ni, which were initially immobilized via ethanedithiol (EDT) as a linker, were highly efficient for photocatalytic hydrogen evolution from Na2S-Na2SO3-containing aqueous solutions. The method developed in this study opens a new synthesis route for the preparation of effective photocatalysts with various combinations of bifunctional linkers, metals, and photocatalyst particulate materials. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  16. Tethering metal ions to photocatalyst particulate surfaces by bifunctional molecular linkers for efficient hydrogen evolution

    KAUST Repository

    Yu, Weili; Isimjan, Tayirjan T.; Del Gobbo, Silvano; Anjum, Dalaver Hussain; Abdel-Azeim, Safwat; Cavallo, Luigi; Garcia Esparza, Angel T.; Domen, Kazunari; Xu, Wei; Takanabe, Kazuhiro

    2014-01-01

    A simple and versatile method for the preparation of photocatalyst particulates modified with effective cocatalysts is presented; the method involves the sequential soaking of photocatalyst particulates in solutions containing bifunctional organic linkers and metal ions. The modification of the particulate surfaces is a universal and reproducible method because the molecular linkers utilize strong covalent bonds, which in turn result in modified monolayer with a small but controlled quantity of metals. The photocatalysis results indicated that the CdS with likely photochemically reduced Pd and Ni, which were initially immobilized via ethanedithiol (EDT) as a linker, were highly efficient for photocatalytic hydrogen evolution from Na2S-Na2SO3-containing aqueous solutions. The method developed in this study opens a new synthesis route for the preparation of effective photocatalysts with various combinations of bifunctional linkers, metals, and photocatalyst particulate materials. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  17. Molecular Evolution and Functional Divergence of Trace Amine-Associated Receptors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seong-Il Eyun

    Full Text Available Trace amine-associated receptors (TAARs are a member of the G-protein-coupled receptor superfamily and are known to be expressed in olfactory sensory neurons. A limited number of molecular evolutionary studies have been done for TAARs so far. To elucidate how lineage-specific evolution contributed to their functional divergence, we examined 30 metazoan genomes. In total, 493 TAAR gene candidates (including 84 pseudogenes were identified from 26 vertebrate genomes. TAARs were not identified from non-vertebrate genomes. An ancestral-type TAAR-like gene appeared to have emerged in lamprey. We found four therian-specific TAAR subfamilies (one eutherian-specific and three metatherian-specific in addition to previously known nine subfamilies. Many species-specific TAAR gene duplications and losses contributed to a large variation of TAAR gene numbers among mammals, ranging from 0 in dolphin to 26 in flying fox. TAARs are classified into two groups based on binding preferences for primary or tertiary amines as well as their sequence similarities. Primary amine-detecting TAARs (TAAR1-4 have emerged earlier, generally have single-copy orthologs (very few duplication or loss, and have evolved under strong functional constraints. In contrast, tertiary amine-detecting TAARs (TAAR5-9 have emerged more recently and the majority of them experienced higher rates of gene duplications. Protein members that belong to the tertiary amine-detecting TAAR group also showed the patterns of positive selection especially in the area surrounding the ligand-binding pocket, which could have affected ligand-binding activities and specificities. Expansions of the tertiary amine-detecting TAAR gene family may have played important roles in terrestrial adaptations of therian mammals. Molecular evolution of the TAAR gene family appears to be governed by a complex, species-specific, interplay between environmental and evolutionary factors.

  18. Rapid molecular evolution of human bocavirus revealed by Bayesian coalescent inference.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zehender, Gianguglielmo; De Maddalena, Chiara; Canuti, Marta; Zappa, Alessandra; Amendola, Antonella; Lai, Alessia; Galli, Massimo; Tanzi, Elisabetta

    2010-03-01

    Human bocavirus (HBoV) is a linear single-stranded DNA virus belonging to the Parvoviridae family that has recently been isolated from the upper respiratory tract of children with acute respiratory infection. All of the strains observed so far segregate into two genotypes (1 and 2) with a low level of polymorphism. Given the recent description of the infection and the lack of epidemiological and molecular data, we estimated the virus's rates of molecular evolution and population dynamics. A dataset of forty-nine dated VP2 sequences, including also eight new isolates obtained from pharyngeal swabs of Italian patients with acute respiratory tract infections, was submitted to phylogenetic analysis. The model parameters, evolutionary rates and population dynamics were co-estimated using a Bayesian Markov Chain Monte Carlo approach, and site-specific positive and negative selection was also investigated. Recombination was investigated by seven different methods and one suspected recombinant strain was excluded from further analysis. The estimated mean evolutionary rate of HBoV was 8.6x10(-4)subs/site/year, and that of the 1st+2nd codon positions was more than 15 times less than that of the 3rd codon position. Viral population dynamics analysis revealed that the two known genotypes diverged recently (mean tMRCA: 24 years), and that the epidemic due to HBoV genotype 2 grew exponentially at a rate of 1.01year(-1). Selection analysis of the partial VP2 showed that 8.5% of sites were under significant negative pressure and the absence of positive selection. Our results show that, like other parvoviruses, HBoV is characterised by a rapid evolution. The low level of polymorphism is probably due to a relatively recent divergence between the circulating genotypes and strong purifying selection acting on viral antigens.

  19. Characteristics and evolution of the ecosystem of software tools supporting research in molecular biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pazos, Florencio; Chagoyen, Monica

    2018-01-16

    Daily work in molecular biology presently depends on a large number of computational tools. An in-depth, large-scale study of that 'ecosystem' of Web tools, its characteristics, interconnectivity, patterns of usage/citation, temporal evolution and rate of decay is crucial for understanding the forces that shape it and for informing initiatives aimed at its funding, long-term maintenance and improvement. In particular, the long-term maintenance of these tools is compromised because of their specific development model. Hundreds of published studies become irreproducible de facto, as the software tools used to conduct them become unavailable. In this study, we present a large-scale survey of >5400 publications describing Web servers within the two main bibliographic resources for disseminating new software developments in molecular biology. For all these servers, we studied their citation patterns, the subjects they address, their citation networks and the temporal evolution of these factors. We also analysed how these factors affect the availability of these servers (whether they are alive). Our results show that this ecosystem of tools is highly interconnected and adapts to the 'trendy' subjects in every moment. The servers present characteristic temporal patterns of citation/usage, and there is a worrying rate of server 'death', which is influenced by factors such as the server popularity and the institutions that hosts it. These results can inform initiatives aimed at the long-term maintenance of these resources. © The Author(s) 2018. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  20. Molecular Evolution of Slow and Quick Anion Channels (SLACs and QUACs/ALMTs).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dreyer, Ingo; Gomez-Porras, Judith Lucia; Riaño-Pachón, Diego Mauricio; Hedrich, Rainer; Geiger, Dietmar

    2012-01-01

    Electrophysiological analyses conducted about 25 years ago detected two types of anion channels in the plasma membrane of guard cells. One type of channel responds slowly to changes in membrane voltage while the other responds quickly. Consequently, they were named SLAC, for SLow Anion Channel, and QUAC, for QUick Anion Channel. Recently, genes SLAC1 and QUAC1/ALMT12, underlying the two different anion current components, could be identified in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana. Expression of the gene products in Xenopus oocytes confirmed the quick and slow current kinetics. In this study we provide an overview on our current knowledge on slow and quick anion channels in plants and analyze the molecular evolution of ALMT/QUAC-like and SLAC-like channels. We discovered fingerprints that allow screening databases for these channel types and were able to identify 192 (177 non-redundant) SLAC-like and 422 (402 non-redundant) ALMT/QUAC-like proteins in the fully sequenced genomes of 32 plant species. Phylogenetic analyses provided new insights into the molecular evolution of these channel types. We also combined sequence alignment and clustering with predictions of protein features, leading to the identification of known conserved phosphorylation sites in SLAC1-like channels along with potential sites that have not been yet experimentally confirmed. Using a similar strategy to analyze the hydropathicity of ALMT/QUAC-like channels, we propose a modified topology with additional transmembrane regions that integrates structure and function of these membrane proteins. Our results suggest that cross-referencing phylogenetic analyses with position-specific protein properties and functional data could be a very powerful tool for genome research approaches in general.

  1. Molecular evolution of slow and quick anion channels (SLACs and QUACs/ALMTs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ingo eDreyer

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Electrophysiological analyses conducted about 25 years ago detected two types of anion channels in the plasma membrane of guard cells. One type of channel responds slowly to changes in membrane voltage while the other responds quickly. Consequently, they were named SLAC, for SLow Anion Channel, and QUAC, for QUick Anion Channel. Recently, genes SLAC1 and QUAC1/ALMT12, underlying the two different anion current components, could be identified in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana. Expression of the gene products in Xenopus oocytes confirmed the quick and slow current kinetics. In this study we provide an overview on our current knowledge on slow and quick anion channels in plants and analyze the molecular evolution of ALMT/QUAC-like and SLAC-like channels. We discovered fingerprints that allow screening databases for these channel types and were able to identify 192 (177 non-redundant SLAC-like and 422 (402 non-redundant ALMT/QUAC-like proteins in the fully sequenced genomes of 32 plant species. Phylogenetic analyses provided new insights into the molecular evolution of these channel types. We also combined sequence alignment and clustering with predictions of protein features, leading to the identification of known conserved phosphorylation sites in SLAC1-like channels along with potential sites that have not been yet experimentally confirmed. Using a similar strategy to analyze the hydropathicity of ALMT/QUAC-like channels, we propose a modified topology with additional transmembrane regions that integrates structure and function of these membrane proteins. Our results suggest that cross-referencing phylogenetic analyses with position-specific protein properties and functional data could be a very powerful tool for genome research approaches in general.

  2. The Relation between Recombination Rate and Patterns of Molecular Evolution and Variation in Drosophila melanogaster

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campos, José L.; Halligan, Daniel L.; Haddrill, Penelope R.; Charlesworth, Brian

    2014-01-01

    Genetic recombination associated with sexual reproduction increases the efficiency of natural selection by reducing the strength of Hill–Robertson interference. Such interference can be caused either by selective sweeps of positively selected alleles or by background selection (BGS) against deleterious mutations. Its consequences can be studied by comparing patterns of molecular evolution and variation in genomic regions with different rates of crossing over. We carried out a comprehensive study of the benefits of recombination in Drosophila melanogaster, both by contrasting five independent genomic regions that lack crossing over with the rest of the genome and by comparing regions with different rates of crossing over, using data on DNA sequence polymorphisms from an African population that is geographically close to the putatively ancestral population for the species, and on sequence divergence from a related species. We observed reductions in sequence diversity in noncrossover (NC) regions that are inconsistent with the effects of hard selective sweeps in the absence of recombination. Overall, the observed patterns suggest that the recombination rate experienced by a gene is positively related to an increase in the efficiency of both positive and purifying selection. The results are consistent with a BGS model with interference among selected sites in NC regions, and joint effects of BGS, selective sweeps, and a past population expansion on variability in regions of the genome that experience crossing over. In such crossover regions, the X chromosome exhibits a higher rate of adaptive protein sequence evolution than the autosomes, implying a Faster-X effect. PMID:24489114

  3. Patterns of molecular evolution of an avian neo-sex chromosome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pala, Irene; Hasselquist, Dennis; Bensch, Staffan; Hansson, Bengt

    2012-12-01

    Newer parts of sex chromosomes, neo-sex chromosomes, offer unique possibilities for studying gene degeneration and sequence evolution in response to loss of recombination and population size decrease. We have recently described a neo-sex chromosome system in Sylvioidea passerines that has resulted from a fusion between the first half (10 Mb) of chromosome 4a and the ancestral sex chromosomes. In this study, we report the results of molecular analyses of neo-Z and neo-W gametologs and intronic parts of neo-Z and autosomal genes on the second half of chromosome 4a in three species within different Sylvioidea lineages (Acrocephalidea, Timaliidae, and Alaudidae). In line with hypotheses of neo-sex chromosome evolution, we observe 1) lower genetic diversity of neo-Z genes compared with autosomal genes, 2) moderate synonymous and weak nonsynonymous sequence divergence between neo-Z and neo-W gametologs, and 3) lower GC content on neo-W than neo-Z gametologs. Phylogenetic reconstruction of eight neo-Z and neo-W gametologs suggests that recombination continued after the split of Alaudidae from the rest of the Sylvioidea lineages (i.e., after ~42.2 Ma) and with some exceptions also after the split of Acrocephalidea and Timaliidae (i.e., after ~39.4 Ma). The Sylvioidea neo-sex chromosome shares classical evolutionary features with the ancestral sex chromosomes but, as expected from its more recent origin, shows weaker divergence between gametologs.

  4. THE GLOBAL EVOLUTION OF GIANT MOLECULAR CLOUDS. II. THE ROLE OF ACCRETION

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Goldbaum, Nathan J.; Krumholz, Mark R.; Matzner, Christopher D.; McKee, Christopher F.

    2011-01-01

    We present virial models for the global evolution of giant molecular clouds (GMCs). Focusing on the presence of an accretion flow and accounting for the amount of mass, momentum, and energy supplied by accretion and star formation feedback, we are able to follow the growth, evolution, and dispersal of individual GMCs. Our model clouds reproduce the scaling relations observed in both galactic and extragalactic clouds. We find that accretion and star formation contribute roughly equal amounts of turbulent kinetic energy over the lifetime of the cloud. Clouds attain virial equilibrium and grow in such a way as to maintain roughly constant surface densities, with typical surface densities of order 50-200 M sun pc -2 , in good agreement with observations of GMCs in the Milky Way and nearby external galaxies. We find that as clouds grow, their velocity dispersion and radius must also increase, implying that the linewidth-size relation constitutes an age sequence. Lastly, we compare our models to observations of GMCs and associated young star clusters in the Large Magellanic Cloud and find good agreement between our model clouds and the observed relationship between H II regions, young star clusters, and GMCs.

  5. Molecular evolution of colorectal cancer: from multistep carcinogenesis to the big bang.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amaro, Adriana; Chiara, Silvana; Pfeffer, Ulrich

    2016-03-01

    Colorectal cancer is characterized by exquisite genomic instability either in the form of microsatellite instability or chromosomal instability. Microsatellite instability is the result of mutation of mismatch repair genes or their silencing through promoter methylation as a consequence of the CpG island methylator phenotype. The molecular causes of chromosomal instability are less well characterized. Genomic instability and field cancerization lead to a high degree of intratumoral heterogeneity and determine the formation of cancer stem cells and epithelial-mesenchymal transition mediated by the TGF-β and APC pathways. Recent analyses using integrated genomics reveal different phases of colorectal cancer evolution. An initial phase of genomic instability that yields many clones with different mutations (big bang) is followed by an important, previously not detected phase of cancer evolution that consists in the stabilization of several clones and a relatively flat outgrowth. The big bang model can best explain the coexistence of several stable clones and is compatible with the fact that the analysis of the bulk of the primary tumor yields prognostic information.

  6. Molecular basis of the evolution of alternative tyrosine biosynthetic routes in plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schenck, Craig A.; Holland, Cynthia K.; Schneider, Matthew R.; Men, Yusen; Lee, Soon Goo; Jez, Joseph M.; Maeda , Hiroshi A. (UW); (WU)

    2017-06-26

    L-Tyrosine (Tyr) is essential for protein synthesis and is a precursor of numerous specialized metabolites crucial for plant and human health. Tyr can be synthesized via two alternative routes by different key regulatory TyrA family enzymes, prephenate dehydrogenase (PDH, also known as TyrAp) or arogenate dehydrogenase (ADH, also known as TyrAa), representing a unique divergence of primary metabolic pathways. The molecular foundation underlying the evolution of these alternative Tyr pathways is currently unknown. Here we characterized recently diverged plant PDH and ADH enzymes, obtained the X-ray crystal structure of soybean PDH, and identified a single amino acid residue that defines TyrA substrate specificity and regulation. Structures of mutated PDHs co-crystallized with Tyr indicate that substitutions of Asn222 confer ADH activity and Tyr sensitivity. Reciprocal mutagenesis of the corresponding residue in divergent plant ADHs further introduced PDH activity and relaxed Tyr sensitivity, highlighting the critical role of this residue in TyrA substrate specificity that underlies the evolution of alternative Tyr biosynthetic pathways in plants.

  7. Comparative transcriptomics of Entelegyne spiders (Araneae, Entelegynae), with emphasis on molecular evolution of orphan genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlson, David E; Hedin, Marshal

    2017-01-01

    Next-generation sequencing technology is rapidly transforming the landscape of evolutionary biology, and has become a cost-effective and efficient means of collecting exome information for non-model organisms. Due to their taxonomic diversity, production of interesting venom and silk proteins, and the relative scarcity of existing genomic resources, spiders in particular are excellent targets for next-generation sequencing (NGS) methods. In this study, the transcriptomes of six entelegyne spider species from three genera (Cicurina travisae, C. vibora, Habronattus signatus, H. ustulatus, Nesticus bishopi, and N. cooperi) were sequenced and de novo assembled. Each assembly was assessed for quality and completeness and functionally annotated using gene ontology information. Approximately 100 transcripts with evidence of homology to venom proteins were discovered. After identifying more than 3,000 putatively orthologous genes across all six taxa, we used comparative analyses to identify 24 instances of positively selected genes. In addition, between ~ 550 and 1,100 unique orphan genes were found in each genus. These unique, uncharacterized genes exhibited elevated rates of amino acid substitution, potentially consistent with lineage-specific adaptive evolution. The data generated for this study represent a valuable resource for future phylogenetic and molecular evolutionary research, and our results provide new insight into the forces driving genome evolution in taxa that span the root of entelegyne spider phylogeny.

  8. Molecular phylogeny and character evolution in terete-stemmed Andean opuntias (Cactaceae-Opuntioideae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ritz, C M; Reiker, J; Charles, G; Hoxey, P; Hunt, D; Lowry, M; Stuppy, W; Taylor, N

    2012-11-01

    The cacti of tribe Tephrocacteae (Cactaceae-Opuntioideae) are adapted to diverse climatic conditions over a wide area of the southern Andes and adjacent lowlands. They exhibit a range of life forms from geophytes and cushion-plants to dwarf shrubs, shrubs or small trees. To confirm or challenge previous morphology-based classifications and molecular phylogenies, we sampled DNA sequences from the chloroplast trnK/matK region and the nuclear low copy gene phyC and compared the resulting phylogenies with previous data gathered from nuclear ribosomal DNA sequences. The here presented chloroplast and nuclear low copy gene phylogenies were mutually congruent and broadly coincident with the classification based on gross morphology and seed micro-morphology and anatomy. Reconstruction of hypothetical ancestral character states suggested that geophytes and cushion-forming species probably evolved several times from dwarf shrubby precursors. We also traced an increase of embryo size at the expense of the nucellus-derived storage tissue during the evolution of the Tephrocacteae, which is thought to be an evolutionary advantage because nutrients are then more rapidly accessible for the germinating embryo. In contrast to these highly concordant phylogenies, nuclear ribosomal DNA data sampled by a previous study yielded conflicting phylogenetic signals. Secondary structure predictions of ribosomal transcribed spacers suggested that this phylogeny is strongly influenced by the inclusion of paralogous sequence probably arisen by genome duplication during the evolution of this plant group. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Galaxy evolution in extreme environments: Molecular gas content star formation and AGN in isolated void galaxies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, Mousumi; Iono, Daisuke; Saito, Toshiki; Subramanian, Smitha

    Since the early redshift surveys of the large scale structure of our universe, it has become clear that galaxies cluster along walls, sheet and filaments leaving large, empty regions called voids between them. Although voids represent the most under dense parts of our universe, they do contain a sparse but significant population of isolated galaxies that are generally low luminosity, late type disk galaxies. Recent studies show that most void galaxies have ongoing star formation and are in an early stage of evolution. We present radio, optical studies of the molecular gas content and star formation in a sample of void galaxies. Using SDSS data, we find that AGN are rare in these systems and are found only in the Bootes void; their black hole masses and radio properties are similar to bright spirals galaxies. Our studies suggest that close galaxy interactions and gas accretion are the main drivers of galaxy evolution in these systems despite their location in the underdense environment of the voids.

  10. Molecular evolution of a chordate specific family of G protein-coupled receptors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leese Florian

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Chordate evolution is a history of innovations that is marked by physical and behavioral specializations, which led to the development of a variety of forms from a single ancestral group. Among other important characteristics, vertebrates obtained a well developed brain, anterior sensory structures, a closed circulatory system and gills or lungs as blood oxygenation systems. The duplication of pre-existing genes had profound evolutionary implications for the developmental complexity in vertebrates, since mutations modifying the function of a duplicated protein can lead to novel functions, improving the evolutionary success. Results We analyzed here the evolution of the GPRC5 family of G protein-coupled receptors by comprehensive similarity searches and found that the receptors are only present in chordates and that the size of the receptor family expanded, likely due to genome duplication events in the early history of vertebrate evolution. We propose that a single GPRC5 receptor coding gene originated in a stem chordate ancestor and gave rise by duplication events to a gene family comprising three receptor types (GPRC5A-C in vertebrates, and a fourth homologue present only in mammals (GPRC5D. Additional duplications of GPRC5B and GPRC5C sequences occurred in teleost fishes. The finding that the expression patterns of the receptors are evolutionarily conserved indicates an important biological function of these receptors. Moreover, we found that expression of GPRC5B is regulated by vitamin A in vivo, confirming previous findings that linked receptor expression to retinoic acid levels in tumor cell lines and strengthening the link between the receptor expression and the development of a complex nervous system in chordates, known to be dependent on retinoic acid signaling. Conclusions GPRC5 receptors, a class of G protein-coupled receptors with unique sequence characteristics, may represent a molecular novelty that helped non

  11. Molecular evolution of the insect chemoreceptor gene superfamily in Drosophila melanogaster

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robertson, Hugh M.; Warr, Coral G.; Carlson, John R.

    2003-01-01

    The insect chemoreceptor superfamily in Drosophila melanogaster is predicted to consist of 62 odorant receptor (Or) and 68 gustatory receptor (Gr) proteins, encoded by families of 60 Or and 60 Gr genes through alternative splicing. We include two previously undescribed Or genes and two previously undescribed Gr genes; two previously predicted Or genes are shown to be alternative splice forms. Three polymorphic pseudogenes and one highly defective pseudogene are recognized. Phylogenetic analysis reveals deep branches connecting multiple highly divergent clades within the Gr family, and the Or family appears to be a single highly expanded lineage within the superfamily. The genes are spread throughout the Drosophila genome, with some relatively recently diverged genes still clustered in the genome. The Gr5a gene on the X chromosome, which encodes a receptor for the sugar trehalose, has transposed from one such tandem cluster of six genes at cytological location 64, as has Gr61a, and all eight of these receptors might bind sugars. Analysis of intron evolution suggests that the common ancestor consisted of a long N-terminal exon encoding transmembrane domains 1-5 followed by three exons encoding transmembrane domains 6-7. As many as 57 additional introns have been acquired idiosyncratically during the evolution of the superfamily, whereas the ancestral introns and some of the older idiosyncratic introns have been lost at least 48 times independently. Altogether, these patterns of molecular evolution suggest that this is an ancient superfamily of chemoreceptors, probably dating back at least to the origin of the arthropods. PMID:14608037

  12. Molecular evolution of a Y chromosome to autosome gene duplication in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dyer, Kelly A; White, Brooke E; Bray, Michael J; Piqué, Daniel G; Betancourt, Andrea J

    2011-03-01

    In contrast to the rest of the genome, the Y chromosome is restricted to males and lacks recombination. As a result, Y chromosomes are unable to respond efficiently to selection, and newly formed Y chromosomes degenerate until few genes remain. The rapid loss of genes from newly formed Y chromosomes has been well studied, but gene loss from highly degenerate Y chromosomes has only recently received attention. Here, we identify and characterize a Y to autosome duplication of the male fertility gene kl-5 that occurred during the evolution of the testacea group species of Drosophila. The duplication was likely DNA based, as other Y-linked genes remain on the Y chromosome, the locations of introns are conserved, and expression analyses suggest that regulatory elements remain linked. Genetic mapping reveals that the autosomal copy of kl-5 resides on the dot chromosome, a tiny autosome with strongly suppressed recombination. Molecular evolutionary analyses show that autosomal copies of kl-5 have reduced polymorphism and little recombination. Importantly, the rate of protein evolution of kl-5 has increased significantly in lineages where it is on the dot versus Y linked. Further analyses suggest this pattern is a consequence of relaxed purifying selection, rather than adaptive evolution. Thus, although the initial fixation of the kl-5 duplication may have been advantageous, slightly deleterious mutations have accumulated in the dot-linked copies of kl-5 faster than in the Y-linked copies. Because the dot chromosome contains seven times more genes than the Y and is exposed to selection in both males and females, these results suggest that the dot suffers the deleterious effects of genetic linkage to more selective targets compared with the Y chromosome. Thus, a highly degenerate Y chromosome may not be the worst environment in the genome, as is generally thought, but may in fact be protected from the accumulation of deleterious mutations relative to other nonrecombining

  13. Genetic diversity and molecular evolution of Ornithogalum mosaic virus based on the coat protein gene sequence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fangluan Gao

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Ornithogalum mosaic virus (OrMV has a wide host range and affects the production of a variety of ornamentals. In this study, the coat protein (CP gene of OrMVwas used to investigate the molecular mechanisms underlying the evolution of this virus. The 36 OrMV isolates fell into two groups which have significant subpopulation differentiation with an FST value of 0.470. One isolate was identified as a recombinant and the other 35 recombination-free isolates could be divided into two major clades under different evolutionary constraints with dN/dS values of 0.055 and 0.028, respectively, indicating a role of purifying selection in the differentiation of OrMV. In addition, the results from analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA indicated that the effect of host species on the genetic divergence of OrMV is greater than that of geography. Furthermore, OrMV isolates from the genera Ornithogalum, Lachenalia and Diuri tended to group together, indicating that OrMV diversification was maintained, in part, by host-driven adaptation.

  14. Rates and patterns of molecular evolution in freshwater versus terrestrial insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitterboeck, T Fatima; Fu, Jinzhong; Adamowicz, Sarah J

    2016-11-01

    Insect lineages have crossed between terrestrial and aquatic habitats many times, for both immature and adult life stages. We explore patterns in molecular evolutionary rates between 42 sister pairs of related terrestrial and freshwater insect clades using publicly available protein-coding DNA sequence data from the orders Coleoptera, Diptera, Lepidoptera, Hemiptera, Mecoptera, Trichoptera, and Neuroptera. We furthermore test for habitat-associated convergent molecular evolution in the cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) gene in general and at a particular amino acid site previously reported to exhibit habitat-linked convergence within an aquatic beetle group. While ratios of nonsynonymous-to-synonymous substitutions across available loci were higher in terrestrial than freshwater-associated taxa in 26 of 42 lineage pairs, a stronger trend was observed (20 of 31, p binomial = 0.15, p Wilcoxon = 0.017) when examining only terrestrial-aquatic pairs including fully aquatic taxa. We did not observe any widespread changes at particular amino acid sites in COI associated with habitat shifts, although there may be general differences in selection regime linked to habitat.

  15. Sequence analysis of serum albumins reveals the molecular evolution of ligand recognition properties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fanali, Gabriella; Ascenzi, Paolo; Bernardi, Giorgio; Fasano, Mauro

    2012-01-01

    Serum albumin (SA) is a circulating protein providing a depot and carrier for many endogenous and exogenous compounds. At least seven major binding sites have been identified by structural and functional investigations mainly in human SA. SA is conserved in vertebrates, with at least 49 entries in protein sequence databases. The multiple sequence analysis of this set of entries leads to the definition of a cladistic tree for the molecular evolution of SA orthologs in vertebrates, thus showing the clustering of the considered species, with lamprey SAs (Lethenteron japonicum and Petromyzon marinus) in a separate outgroup. Sequence analysis aimed at searching conserved domains revealed that most SA sequences are made up by three repeated domains (about 600 residues), as extensively characterized for human SA. On the contrary, lamprey SAs are giant proteins (about 1400 residues) comprising seven repeated domains. The phylogenetic analysis of the SA family reveals a stringent correlation with the taxonomic classification of the species available in sequence databases. A focused inspection of the sequences of ligand binding sites in SA revealed that in all sites most residues involved in ligand binding are conserved, although the versatility towards different ligands could be peculiar of higher organisms. Moreover, the analysis of molecular links between the different sites suggests that allosteric modulation mechanisms could be restricted to higher vertebrates.

  16. Molecular evolution of the Li/li chemical defence polymorphism in white clover (Trifolium repens L.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olsen, K M; Sutherland, B L; Small, L L

    2007-10-01

    White clover (Trifolium repens) is naturally polymorphic for cyanogenesis (hydrogen cyanide release following tissue damage). The ecological factors favouring cyanogenic and acyanogenic plants have been examined in numerous studies over the last half century, making this one of the best-documented examples of an adaptive polymorphism in plants. White clover cyanogenesis is controlled by two, independently segregating Mendelian genes: Ac/ac controls the presence/absence of cyanogenic glucosides; and Li/li controls the presence/absence of their hydrolysing enzyme, linamarase. In this study, we examine the molecular evolution and population genetics of Li as it relates to the cyanogenesis polymorphism. We report here that Li exists as a single-copy gene in plants possessing linamarase activity, and that the absence of enzyme activity in li/li plants is correlated with the absence of much or all of the gene from the white clover genome. Consistent with this finding, we confirm by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction that Li gene expression is absent in plants lacking enzyme activity. In a molecular population genetic analysis of Li and three unlinked genes using a worldwide sample of clover plants, we find an absence of nucleotide variation and statistically significant deviations from neutrality at Li; these findings are consistent with recent positive directional selection at this cyanogenesis locus.

  17. Molecular evolution in Panagrolaimus nematodes: origins of parthenogenesis, hermaphroditism and the Antarctic species P. davidi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    LaMunyon Craig W

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background As exemplified by the famously successful model organism Caenorhabditis elegans, nematodes offer outstanding animal systems for investigating diverse biological phenomena due to their small genome sizes, short generation times and ease of laboratory maintenance. Nematodes in the genus Panagrolaimus have served in comparative development and anhydrobiosis studies, and the Antarctic species P. davidi offers a powerful paradigm for understanding the biological mechanisms of extreme cold tolerance. Panagrolaimus nematodes are also unique in that examples of gonochoristic, hermaphroditic and parthenogenetic reproductive modes have been reported for members of this genus. The evolutionary origins of these varying reproductive modes and the Antarctic species P. davidi, however, remain enigmatic. Results We collected nuclear ribosomal RNA gene and mitochondrial protein-coding gene sequences from diverse Panagrolaimus species and strains, including newly discovered isolates from Oregon, to investigate phylogenetic relationships in this nematode genus. Nuclear phylogenies showed that the species and strains historically identified as members of Panagrolaimus constitute a paraphyletic group, suggesting that taxonomic revision is required for Panagrolaimus and related nematode lineages. Strain-specific reproductive modes were mapped onto the molecular phylogeny to show a single origin of parthenogenesis from a presumably gonochoristic ancestor. The hermaphroditic strains were all placed outside a major monophyletic clade that contained the majority of other Panagrolaimus nematodes. Phylogenetic analyses of mitochondrial sequences showed that substantial molecular and geographic diversity exists within the clade of parthenogenetic strains. The Antarctic species P. davidi was found to be very closely related to two Panagrolaimus strains from southern California. Phylogenetic and molecular clock analyses suggested that P. davidi and the

  18. Molecular corridors and parameterizations of volatility in the chemical evolution of organic aerosols

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y. Li

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The formation and aging of organic aerosols (OA proceed through multiple steps of chemical reaction and mass transport in the gas and particle phases, which is challenging for the interpretation of field measurements and laboratory experiments as well as accurate representation of OA evolution in atmospheric aerosol models. Based on data from over 30 000 compounds, we show that organic compounds with a wide variety of functional groups fall into molecular corridors, characterized by a tight inverse correlation between molar mass and volatility. We developed parameterizations to predict the saturation mass concentration of organic compounds containing oxygen, nitrogen, and sulfur from the elemental composition that can be measured by soft-ionization high-resolution mass spectrometry. Field measurement data from new particle formation events, biomass burning, cloud/fog processing, and indoor environments were mapped into molecular corridors to characterize the chemical nature of the observed OA components. We found that less-oxidized indoor OA are constrained to a corridor of low molar mass and high volatility, whereas highly oxygenated compounds in atmospheric water extend to high molar mass and low volatility. Among the nitrogen- and sulfur-containing compounds identified in atmospheric aerosols, amines tend to exhibit low molar mass and high volatility, whereas organonitrates and organosulfates follow high O : C corridors extending to high molar mass and low volatility. We suggest that the consideration of molar mass and molecular corridors can help to constrain volatility and particle-phase state in the modeling of OA particularly for nitrogen- and sulfur-containing compounds.

  19. Cyndi: a multi-objective evolution algorithm based method for bioactive molecular conformational generation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xiaofeng; Bai, Fang; Ouyang, Sisheng; Wang, Xicheng; Li, Honglin; Jiang, Hualiang

    2009-03-31

    Conformation generation is a ubiquitous problem in molecule modelling. Many applications require sampling the broad molecular conformational space or perceiving the bioactive conformers to ensure success. Numerous in silico methods have been proposed in an attempt to resolve the problem, ranging from deterministic to non-deterministic and systemic to stochastic ones. In this work, we described an efficient conformation sampling method named Cyndi, which is based on multi-objective evolution algorithm. The conformational perturbation is subjected to evolutionary operation on the genome encoded with dihedral torsions. Various objectives are designated to render the generated Pareto optimal conformers to be energy-favoured as well as evenly scattered across the conformational space. An optional objective concerning the degree of molecular extension is added to achieve geometrically extended or compact conformations which have been observed to impact the molecular bioactivity (J Comput -Aided Mol Des 2002, 16: 105-112). Testing the performance of Cyndi against a test set consisting of 329 small molecules reveals an average minimum RMSD of 0.864 A to corresponding bioactive conformations, indicating Cyndi is highly competitive against other conformation generation methods. Meanwhile, the high-speed performance (0.49 +/- 0.18 seconds per molecule) renders Cyndi to be a practical toolkit for conformational database preparation and facilitates subsequent pharmacophore mapping or rigid docking. The copy of precompiled executable of Cyndi and the test set molecules in mol2 format are accessible in Additional file 1. On the basis of MOEA algorithm, we present a new, highly efficient conformation generation method, Cyndi, and report the results of validation and performance studies comparing with other four methods. The results reveal that Cyndi is capable of generating geometrically diverse conformers and outperforms other four multiple conformer generators in the case of

  20. The role of macromolecular crowding in the evolution of lens crystallins with high molecular refractive index

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhao, Huaying; Magone, M Teresa; Schuck, Peter

    2011-01-01

    Crystallins are present in the lens at extremely high concentrations in order to provide transparency and generate a high refractive power of the lens. The crystallin families prevalent in the highest density lens tissues are γ-crystallins in vertebrates and S-crystallins in cephalopods. As shown elsewhere, in parallel evolution, both have evolved molecular refractive index increments 5–10% above those of most proteins. Although this is a small increase, it is statistically very significant and can be achieved only by very unusual amino acid compositions. In contrast, such a molecular adaptation to aid in the refractive function of the lens did not occur in crystallins that are preferentially located in lower density lens tissues, such as vertebrate α-crystallin and taxon-specific crystallins. In the current work, we apply a model of non-interacting hard spheres to examine the thermodynamic contributions of volume exclusion at lenticular protein concentrations. We show that the small concentration decrease afforded by the higher molecular refractive index increment of crystallins can amplify nonlinearly to produce order of magnitude differences in chemical activities, and lead to reduced osmotic pressure and the reduced propensity for protein aggregation. Quantitatively, this amplification sets in only at protein concentrations as high as those found in hard lenses or the nucleus of soft lenses, in good correspondence to the observed crystallin properties in different tissues and different species. This suggests that volume exclusion effects provide the evolutionary driving force for the unusual refractive properties and the unusual amino acid compositions of γ-crystallins and S-crystallins

  1. Deceptive Desmas: Molecular Phylogenetics Suggests a New Classification and Uncovers Convergent Evolution of Lithistid Demosponges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuster, Astrid; Erpenbeck, Dirk; Pisera, Andrzej; Hooper, John; Bryce, Monika; Fromont, Jane; Wörheide, Gert

    2015-01-01

    Reconciling the fossil record with molecular phylogenies to enhance the understanding of animal evolution is a challenging task, especially for taxa with a mostly poor fossil record, such as sponges (Porifera). ‘Lithistida’, a polyphyletic group of recent and fossil sponges, are an exception as they provide the richest fossil record among demosponges. Lithistids, currently encompassing 13 families, 41 genera and >300 recent species, are defined by the common possession of peculiar siliceous spicules (desmas) that characteristically form rigid articulated skeletons. Their phylogenetic relationships are to a large extent unresolved and there has been no (taxonomically) comprehensive analysis to formally reallocate lithistid taxa to their closest relatives. This study, based on the most comprehensive molecular and morphological investigation of ‘lithistid’ demosponges to date, corroborates some previous weakly-supported hypotheses, and provides novel insights into the evolutionary relationships of the previous ‘order Lithistida’. Based on molecular data (partial mtDNA CO1 and 28S rDNA sequences), we show that 8 out of 13 ‘Lithistida’ families belong to the order Astrophorida, whereas Scleritodermidae and Siphonidiidae form a separate monophyletic clade within Tetractinellida. Most lithistid astrophorids are dispersed between different clades of the Astrophorida and we propose to formally reallocate them, respectively. Corallistidae, Theonellidae and Phymatellidae are monophyletic, whereas the families Pleromidae and Scleritodermidae are polyphyletic. Family Desmanthidae is polyphyletic and groups within Halichondriidae – we formally propose a reallocation. The sister group relationship of the family Vetulinidae to Spongillida is confirmed and we propose here for the first time to include Vetulina into a new Order Sphaerocladina. Megascleres and microscleres possibly evolved and/or were lost several times independently in different

  2. Deceptive desmas: molecular phylogenetics suggests a new classification and uncovers convergent evolution of lithistid demosponges.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Astrid Schuster

    Full Text Available Reconciling the fossil record with molecular phylogenies to enhance the understanding of animal evolution is a challenging task, especially for taxa with a mostly poor fossil record, such as sponges (Porifera. 'Lithistida', a polyphyletic group of recent and fossil sponges, are an exception as they provide the richest fossil record among demosponges. Lithistids, currently encompassing 13 families, 41 genera and >300 recent species, are defined by the common possession of peculiar siliceous spicules (desmas that characteristically form rigid articulated skeletons. Their phylogenetic relationships are to a large extent unresolved and there has been no (taxonomically comprehensive analysis to formally reallocate lithistid taxa to their closest relatives. This study, based on the most comprehensive molecular and morphological investigation of 'lithistid' demosponges to date, corroborates some previous weakly-supported hypotheses, and provides novel insights into the evolutionary relationships of the previous 'order Lithistida'. Based on molecular data (partial mtDNA CO1 and 28S rDNA sequences, we show that 8 out of 13 'Lithistida' families belong to the order Astrophorida, whereas Scleritodermidae and Siphonidiidae form a separate monophyletic clade within Tetractinellida. Most lithistid astrophorids are dispersed between different clades of the Astrophorida and we propose to formally reallocate them, respectively. Corallistidae, Theonellidae and Phymatellidae are monophyletic, whereas the families Pleromidae and Scleritodermidae are polyphyletic. Family Desmanthidae is polyphyletic and groups within Halichondriidae--we formally propose a reallocation. The sister group relationship of the family Vetulinidae to Spongillida is confirmed and we propose here for the first time to include Vetulina into a new Order Sphaerocladina. Megascleres and microscleres possibly evolved and/or were lost several times independently in different 'lithistid' taxa, and

  3. Cyndi: a multi-objective evolution algorithm based method for bioactive molecular conformational generation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Honglin

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Conformation generation is a ubiquitous problem in molecule modelling. Many applications require sampling the broad molecular conformational space or perceiving the bioactive conformers to ensure success. Numerous in silico methods have been proposed in an attempt to resolve the problem, ranging from deterministic to non-deterministic and systemic to stochastic ones. In this work, we described an efficient conformation sampling method named Cyndi, which is based on multi-objective evolution algorithm. Results The conformational perturbation is subjected to evolutionary operation on the genome encoded with dihedral torsions. Various objectives are designated to render the generated Pareto optimal conformers to be energy-favoured as well as evenly scattered across the conformational space. An optional objective concerning the degree of molecular extension is added to achieve geometrically extended or compact conformations which have been observed to impact the molecular bioactivity (J Comput -Aided Mol Des 2002, 16: 105–112. Testing the performance of Cyndi against a test set consisting of 329 small molecules reveals an average minimum RMSD of 0.864 Å to corresponding bioactive conformations, indicating Cyndi is highly competitive against other conformation generation methods. Meanwhile, the high-speed performance (0.49 ± 0.18 seconds per molecule renders Cyndi to be a practical toolkit for conformational database preparation and facilitates subsequent pharmacophore mapping or rigid docking. The copy of precompiled executable of Cyndi and the test set molecules in mol2 format are accessible in Additional file 1. Conclusion On the basis of MOEA algorithm, we present a new, highly efficient conformation generation method, Cyndi, and report the results of validation and performance studies comparing with other four methods. The results reveal that Cyndi is capable of generating geometrically diverse conformers and outperforms

  4. pH-dependent absorption spectra of rhodopsin mutant E113Q: On the role of counterions and protein

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Peng; Zhou, Panwang; Alsaedi, Ahmed; Zhang, Yan

    2017-03-01

    The absorption spectra of bovine rhodopsin mutant E113Q in solutions were investigated at the molecular level by using a hybrid quantum mechanics/molecular mechanics (QM/MM) method. The calculations suggest the mechanism of the absorption variations of E113Q at different pH values. The results indicate that the polarizations of the counterions in the vicinity of Schiff base under protonation and unprotonation states of the mutant E113Q would be a crucial factor to change the energy gap of the retinal to tune the absorption spectra. Glu-181 residue, which is close to the chromophore, cannot serve as the counterion of the protonated Schiff base of E113Q in dark state. Moreover, the results of the absorption maximum in mutant E113Q with the various anions (Cl-, Br-, I- and NO3-) manifested that the mutant E113Q could have the potential for use as a template of anion biosensors at visible wavelength.

  5. Molecular evolution of rbcL in three gymnosperm families: identifying adaptive and coevolutionary patterns

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Sen, Lin

    2011-06-03

    mutations put forward the conclusion that this evolutionary scenario has been possible through a complex interplay between adaptive mutations, often structurally destabilizing, and compensatory mutations. Our results unearth patterns of evolution that have likely optimized the Rubisco activity and uncover mutational dynamics useful in the molecular engineering of enzymatic activities. Reviewers This article was reviewed by Prof. Christian Blouin (nominated by Dr W Ford Doolittle), Dr Endre Barta (nominated by Dr Sandor Pongor), and Dr Nicolas Galtier.

  6. Rhodopsin in plasma from patients with diabetic retinopathy - development and validation of digital ELISA by Single Molecule Array (Simoa) technology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Petersen, Eva Rabing Brix; Olsen, Dorte Aalund; Christensen, Henry

    2017-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Diabetic retinopathy (DR) is the most frequent cause of blindness among younger adults in the western world. No blood biomarkers exist to detect DR. Hypothetically, Rhodopsin concentrations in blood has been suggested as an early marker for retinal damage. The aim of this study...... was therefore to develop and validate a Rhodopsin assay by employing digital ELISA technology, and to investigate whether Rhodopsin concentrations in diabetes patients with DR are elevated compared with diabetes patients without DR. METHODS: A digital ELISA assay using a Simoa HD-1 Analyzer (Quanterix......©, Lexington, MA 02421, USA) was developed and validated and applied on a cohort of diabetes patients characterised with (n=466) and without (n=144) DR. RESULTS: The Rhodopsin assay demonstrated a LOD of 0.26ng/l, a LLOQ of 3ng/l and a linear measuring range from 3 to 2500ng/l. Total CV% was 32%, 23%, 19...

  7. Molecular phylogenetic evaluation of classification and scenarios of character evolution in calcareous sponges (Porifera, Class Calcarea.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oliver Voigt

    Full Text Available Calcareous sponges (Phylum Porifera, Class Calcarea are known to be taxonomically difficult. Previous molecular studies have revealed many discrepancies between classically recognized taxa and the observed relationships at the order, family and genus levels; these inconsistencies question underlying hypotheses regarding the evolution of certain morphological characters. Therefore, we extended the available taxa and character set by sequencing the complete small subunit (SSU rDNA and the almost complete large subunit (LSU rDNA of additional key species and complemented this dataset by substantially increasing the length of available LSU sequences. Phylogenetic analyses provided new hypotheses about the relationships of Calcarea and about the evolution of certain morphological characters. We tested our phylogeny against competing phylogenetic hypotheses presented by previous classification systems. Our data reject the current order-level classification by again finding non-monophyletic Leucosolenida, Clathrinida and Murrayonida. In the subclass Calcinea, we recovered a clade that includes all species with a cortex, which is largely consistent with the previously proposed order Leucettida. Other orders that had been rejected in the current system were not found, but could not be rejected in our tests either. We found several additional families and genera polyphyletic: the families Leucascidae and Leucaltidae and the genus Leucetta in Calcinea, and in Calcaronea the family Amphoriscidae and the genus Ute. Our phylogeny also provided support for the vaguely suspected close relationship of several members of Grantiidae with giantortical diactines to members of Heteropiidae. Similarly, our analyses revealed several unexpected affinities, such as a sister group relationship between Leucettusa (Leucaltidae and Leucettidae and between Leucascandra (Jenkinidae and Sycon carteri (Sycettidae. According to our results, the taxonomy of Calcarea is in

  8. Genomic makeup of the marine flavobacterium Nonlabens (Donghaeana) dokdonensis and identification of a novel class of rhodopsins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kwon, Soon-Kyeong; Kim, Byung Kwon; Song, Ju Yeon; Kwak, Min-Jung; Lee, Choong Hoon; Yoon, Jung-Hoon; Oh, Tae Kwang; Kim, Jihyun F

    2013-01-01

    Rhodopsin-containing marine microbes such as those in the class Flavobacteriia play a pivotal role in the biogeochemical cycle of the euphotic zone (Fuhrman JA, Schwalbach MS, Stingl U. 2008. Proteorhodopsins: an array of physiological roles? Nat Rev Microbiol. 6:488-494). Deciphering the genome information of flavobacteria and accessing the diversity and ecological impact of microbial rhodopsins are important in understanding and preserving the global ecosystems. The genome sequence of the orange-pigmented marine flavobacterium Nonlabens dokdonensis (basonym: Donghaeana dokdonensis) DSW-6 was determined. As a marine photoheterotroph, DSW-6 has written in its genome physiological features that allow survival in the oligotrophic environments. The sequence analysis also uncovered a gene encoding an unexpected type of microbial rhodopsin containing a unique motif in addition to a proteorhodopsin gene and a number of photolyase or cryptochrome genes. Homologs of the novel rhodopsin gene were found in other flavobacteria, alphaproteobacteria, a species of Cytophagia, a deinococcus, and even a eukaryote diatom. They all contain the characteristic NQ motif and form a phylogenetically distinct group. Expression analysis of this rhodopsin gene in DSW-6 indicated that it is induced at high NaCl concentrations, as well as in the presence of light and the absence of nutrients. Genomic and metagenomic surveys demonstrate the diversity of the NQ rhodopsins in nature and the prevalent occurrence of the encoding genes among microbial communities inhabiting hypersaline niches, suggesting its involvement in sodium metabolism and the sodium-adapted lifestyle.

  9. Molecular evolution of a-kinase anchoring protein (AKAP-7: implications in comparative PKA compartmentalization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johnson Keven R

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A-Kinase Anchoring Proteins (AKAPs are molecular scaffolding proteins mediating the assembly of multi-protein complexes containing cAMP-dependent protein kinase A (PKA, directing the kinase in discrete subcellular locations. Splice variants from the AKAP7 gene (AKAP15/18 are vital components of neuronal and cardiac phosphatase complexes, ion channels, cardiac Ca2+ handling and renal water transport. Results Shown in evolutionary analyses, the formation of the AKAP7-RI/RII binding domain (required for AKAP/PKA-R interaction corresponds to vertebrate-specific gene duplication events in the PKA-RI/RII subunits. Species analyses of AKAP7 splice variants shows the ancestral AKAP7 splice variant is AKAP7α, while the ancestral long form AKAP7 splice variant is AKAP7γ. Multi-species AKAP7 gene alignments, show the recent formation of AKAP7δ occurs with the loss of native AKAP7γ in rats and basal primates. AKAP7 gene alignments and two dimensional Western analyses indicate that AKAP7γ is produced from an internal translation-start site that is present in the AKAP7δ cDNA of mice and humans but absent in rats. Immunofluorescence analysis of AKAP7 protein localization in both rat and mouse heart suggests AKAP7γ replaces AKAP7δ at the cardiac sarcoplasmic reticulum in species other than rat. DNA sequencing identified Human AKAP7δ insertion-deletions (indels that promote the production of AKAP7γ instead of AKAP7δ. Conclusions This AKAP7 molecular evolution study shows that these vital scaffolding proteins developed in ancestral vertebrates and that independent mutations in the AKAP7 genes of rodents and early primates has resulted in the recent formation of AKAP7δ, a splice variant of likely lesser importance in humans than currently described.

  10. Molecular characterization and volatility evolution of α-pinene ozonolysis SOA during isothermal evaporations

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Ambro, E.; Schobesberger, S.; Lopez-Hilfiker, F.; Shilling, J. E.; Lee, B. H.; Thornton, J. A.

    2017-12-01

    α-Pinene (C10H16), the most abundantly emitted monoterpene, is a large contributor to global biogenic secondary organic aerosol (SOA) budgets due to its high SOA yields upon oxidation. We probe the volatility and evaporation behavior upon dilution of α-pinene SOA to further our understanding of the nascent volatility distribution, viscosity, and how these evolve in time absent photochemical oxidation. We present molecular composition measurements of the gas and particle phases of α-pinene ozonolysis SOA formed at 0% and 50% relative humidity (RH), followed by room-temperature evaporation in ultra-high purity N2 humidified to 20-90% RH. Experiments were performed in the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory 10.6 m3 and the University of Washington 0.7 m3 environmental chambers utilizing a Filter Inlet for Gases and AEROsols (FIGAERO) coupled to a high-resolution time of flight chemical ionization mass spectrometer utilizing iodide adduct ionization. We present novel insights into the total mass that evaporates as a function of time from 10 min to 24 hours without heating, the molecular speciation of the evaporate, as well as the effective volatility and composition of the SOA mass remaining. Consistent with previous studies, we find two stages of evaporation: a rapid loss of a large portion of the total signal over the course of ≤3 hours, followed by a stage of much slower evaporation over the proceeding 21 hours. Varying the RH of formation effects evaporation rate on timescales ≤3 hours, however the mass fraction remaining after 24 hours converges to 30-50% under all formation and evaporation RHs. We simulate the evaporation behavior and remaining fractions desorbed via temperature programmed thermal desorption to derive effective saturation vapor concentrations, mass accommodation coefficients, and rates of chemical evolution producing both higher and lower volatility components during the evaporation time period.

  11. LGI1, CASPR2 and related antibodies: a molecular evolution of the phenotypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Binks, Sophie N M; Klein, Christopher J; Waters, Patrick; Pittock, Sean J; Irani, Sarosh R

    2018-05-01

    Recent biochemical observations have helped redefine antigenic components within the voltage-gated potassium channel (VGKC) complex. The related autoantibodies may be now divided into likely pathogenic entities, which target the extracellular domains of leucine-rich glioma-inactivated 1 (LGI1) and contactin-associated protein-like 2 (CASPR2), and species that target intracellular neuronal components and are likely non-pathogenic. This distinction has enhanced clinical practice as direct determination of LGI1 and CASPR2 antibodies offers optimal sensitivity and specificity. In this review, we describe and compare the clinical features associated with pathogenic LGI1 and CASPR2 antibodies, illustrate emerging laboratory techniques for antibody determination and describe the immunological mechanisms that may mediate antibody-induced pathology. We highlight marked clinical overlaps between patients with either LGI1 or CASPR2 antibodies that include frequent focal seizures, prominent amnesia, dysautonomia, neuromyotonia and neuropathic pain. Although occurring at differing rates, these commonalities are striking and only faciobrachial dystonic seizures reliably differentiate these two conditions. Furthermore, the coexistence of both LGI1 and CASPR2 antibodies in an individual occurs surprisingly frequently. Patients with either antibody respond well to immunotherapies, although systematic studies are required to determine the magnitude of the effect beyond placebo. Finally, data have suggested that CASPR2 and LGI1 modulation via genetic or autoimmune mechanisms may share common intermediate molecules. Taken together, the biochemical distinction of antigenic targets has led to important clinical advances for patient care. However, the striking syndrome similarities, coexistence of two otherwise rare antibodies and molecular insights suggest the VGKC complex may yet be a common functional effector of antibody action. Hence, we argue for a molecular evolution alongside a

  12. Star formation induced by cloud-cloud collisions and galactic giant molecular cloud evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kobayashi, Masato I. N.; Kobayashi, Hiroshi; Inutsuka, Shu-ichiro; Fukui, Yasuo

    2018-05-01

    Recent millimeter/submillimeter observations towards nearby galaxies have started to map the whole disk and to identify giant molecular clouds (GMCs) even in the regions between galactic spiral structures. Observed variations of GMC mass functions in different galactic environments indicates that massive GMCs preferentially reside along galactic spiral structures whereas inter-arm regions have many small GMCs. Based on the phase transition dynamics from magnetized warm neutral medium to molecular clouds, Kobayashi et al. (2017, ApJ, 836, 175) proposes a semi-analytical evolutionary description for GMC mass functions including a cloud-cloud collision (CCC) process. Their results show that CCC is less dominant in shaping the mass function of GMCs than the accretion of dense H I gas driven by the propagation of supersonic shock waves. However, their formulation does not take into account the possible enhancement of star formation by CCC. Millimeter/submillimeter observations within the Milky Way indicate the importance of CCC in the formation of star clusters and massive stars. In this article, we reformulate the time-evolution equation largely modified from Kobayashi et al. (2017, ApJ, 836, 175) so that we additionally compute star formation subsequently taking place in CCC clouds. Our results suggest that, although CCC events between smaller clouds are more frequent than the ones between massive GMCs, CCC-driven star formation is mostly driven by massive GMCs ≳ 10^{5.5} M_{⊙} (where M⊙ is the solar mass). The resultant cumulative CCC-driven star formation may amount to a few 10 percent of the total star formation in the Milky Way and nearby galaxies.

  13. LGI1, CASPR2 and related antibodies: a molecular evolution of the phenotypes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Binks, Sophie N M; Klein, Christopher J; Waters, Patrick; Pittock, Sean J; Irani, Sarosh R

    2018-01-01

    Recent biochemical observations have helped redefine antigenic components within the voltage-gated potassium channel (VGKC) complex. The related autoantibodies may be now divided into likely pathogenic entities, which target the extracellular domains of leucine-rich glioma-inactivated 1 (LGI1) and contactin-associated protein-like 2 (CASPR2), and species that target intracellular neuronal components and are likely non-pathogenic. This distinction has enhanced clinical practice as direct determination of LGI1 and CASPR2 antibodies offers optimal sensitivity and specificity. In this review, we describe and compare the clinical features associated with pathogenic LGI1 and CASPR2 antibodies, illustrate emerging laboratory techniques for antibody determination and describe the immunological mechanisms that may mediate antibody-induced pathology. We highlight marked clinical overlaps between patients with either LGI1 or CASPR2 antibodies that include frequent focal seizures, prominent amnesia, dysautonomia, neuromyotonia and neuropathic pain. Although occurring at differing rates, these commonalities are striking and only faciobrachial dystonic seizures reliably differentiate these two conditions. Furthermore, the coexistence of both LGI1 and CASPR2 antibodies in an individual occurs surprisingly frequently. Patients with either antibody respond well to immunotherapies, although systematic studies are required to determine the magnitude of the effect beyond placebo. Finally, data have suggested that CASPR2 and LGI1 modulation via genetic or autoimmune mechanisms may share common intermediate molecules. Taken together, the biochemical distinction of antigenic targets has led to important clinical advances for patient care. However, the striking syndrome similarities, coexistence of two otherwise rare antibodies and molecular insights suggest the VGKC complex may yet be a common functional effector of antibody action. Hence, we argue for a molecular evolution alongside a

  14. Molecular evolution of the keratin associated protein gene family in mammals, role in the evolution of mammalian hair.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Dong-Dong; Irwin, David M; Zhang, Ya-Ping

    2008-08-23

    Hair is unique to mammals. Keratin associated proteins (KRTAPs), which contain two major groups: high/ultrahigh cysteine and high glycine-tyrosine, are one of the major components of hair and play essential roles in the formation of rigid and resistant hair shafts. The KRTAP family was identified as being unique to mammals, and near-complete KRTAP gene repertoires for eight mammalian genomes were characterized in this study. An expanded KRTAP gene repertoire was found in rodents. Surprisingly, humans have a similar number of genes as other primates despite the relative hairlessness of humans. We identified several new subfamilies not previously reported in the high/ultrahigh cysteine KRTAP genes. Genes in many subfamilies of the high/ultrahigh cysteine KRTAP genes have evolved by concerted evolution with frequent gene conversion events, yielding a higher GC base content for these gene sequences. In contrast, the high glycine-tyrosine KRTAP genes have evolved more dynamically, with fewer gene conversion events and thus have a lower GC base content, possibly due to positive selection. Most of the subfamilies emerged early in the evolution of mammals, thus we propose that the mammalian ancestor should have a diverse KRTAP gene repertoire. We propose that hair content characteristics have evolved and diverged rapidly among mammals because of rapid divergent evolution of KRTAPs between species. In contrast, subfamilies of KRTAP genes have been homogenized within each species due to concerted evolution.

  15. Back to the sea twice: identifying candidate plant genes for molecular evolution to marine life

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reusch Thorsten BH

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Seagrasses are a polyphyletic group of monocotyledonous angiosperms that have adapted to a completely submerged lifestyle in marine waters. Here, we exploit two collections of expressed sequence tags (ESTs of two wide-spread and ecologically important seagrass species, the Mediterranean seagrass Posidonia oceanica (L. Delile and the eelgrass Zostera marina L., which have independently evolved from aquatic ancestors. This replicated, yet independent evolutionary history facilitates the identification of traits that may have evolved in parallel and are possible instrumental candidates for adaptation to a marine habitat. Results In our study, we provide the first quantitative perspective on molecular adaptations in two seagrass species. By constructing orthologous gene clusters shared between two seagrasses (Z. marina and P. oceanica and eight distantly related terrestrial angiosperm species, 51 genes could be identified with detection of positive selection along the seagrass branches of the phylogenetic tree. Characterization of these positively selected genes using KEGG pathways and the Gene Ontology uncovered that these genes are mostly involved in translation, metabolism, and photosynthesis. Conclusions These results provide first insights into which seagrass genes have diverged from their terrestrial counterparts via an initial aquatic stage characteristic of the order and to the derived fully-marine stage characteristic of seagrasses. We discuss how adaptive changes in these processes may have contributed to the evolution towards an aquatic and marine existence.

  16. Heterogeneous Rates of Molecular Evolution and Diversification Could Explain the Triassic Age Estimate for Angiosperms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beaulieu, Jeremy M; O'Meara, Brian C; Crane, Peter; Donoghue, Michael J

    2015-09-01

    Dating analyses based on molecular data imply that crown angiosperms existed in the Triassic, long before their undisputed appearance in the fossil record in the Early Cretaceous. Following a re-analysis of the age of angiosperms using updated sequences and fossil calibrations, we use a series of simulations to explore the possibility that the older age estimates are a consequence of (i) major shifts in the rate of sequence evolution near the base of the angiosperms and/or (ii) the representative taxon sampling strategy employed in such studies. We show that both of these factors do tend to yield substantially older age estimates. These analyses do not prove that younger age estimates based on the fossil record are correct, but they do suggest caution in accepting the older age estimates obtained using current relaxed-clock methods. Although we have focused here on the angiosperms, we suspect that these results will shed light on dating discrepancies in other major clades. ©The Author(s) 2015. Published by Oxford University Press, on behalf of the Society of Systematic Biologists. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  17. Molecular Evolution and Expansion Analysis of the NAC Transcription Factor in Zea mays

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Kai; Wang, Ming; Miao, Ying; Ni, Mi; Bibi, Noreen; Yuan, Shuna; Li, Feng; Wang, Xuede

    2014-01-01

    NAC (NAM, ATAF1, 2 and CUC2) family is a plant-specific transcription factor and it controls various plant developmental processes. In the current study, 124 NAC members were identified in Zea mays and were phylogenetically clustered into 13 distinct subfamilies. The whole genome duplication (WGD), especially an additional WGD event, may lead to expanding ZmNAC members. Different subfamily has different expansion rate, and NAC subfamily preference was found during the expansion in maize. Moreover, the duplication events might occur after the divergence of the lineages of Z. mays and S. italica, and segmental duplication seemed to be the dominant pattern for the gene duplication in maize. Furthermore, the expansion of ZmNAC members may be also related to gain and loss of introns. Besides, the restriction of functional divergence was discovered after most of the gene duplication events. These results could provide novel insights into molecular evolution and expansion analysis of NAC family in maize, and advance the NAC researches in other plants, especially polyploid plants. PMID:25369196

  18. Molecular evolution of candidate genes for crop-related traits in sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mandel, Jennifer R; McAssey, Edward V; Nambeesan, Savithri; Garcia-Navarro, Elena; Burke, John M

    2014-01-01

    Evolutionary analyses aimed at detecting the molecular signature of selection during crop domestication and/or improvement can be used to identify genes or genomic regions of likely agronomic importance. Here, we describe the DNA sequence-based characterization of a pool of candidate genes for crop-related traits in sunflower. These genes, which were identified based on homology to genes of known effect in other study systems, were initially sequenced from a panel of improved lines. All genes that exhibited a paucity of sequence diversity, consistent with the possible effects of selection during the evolution of cultivated sunflower, were then sequenced from a panel of wild sunflower accessions an outgroup. These data enabled formal tests for the effects of selection in shaping sequence diversity at these loci. When selection was detected, we further sequenced these genes from a panel of primitive landraces, thereby allowing us to investigate the likely timing of selection (i.e., domestication vs. improvement). We ultimately identified seven genes that exhibited the signature of positive selection during either domestication or improvement. Genetic mapping of a subset of these genes revealed co-localization between candidates for genes involved in the determination of flowering time, seed germination, plant growth/development, and branching and QTL that were previously identified for these traits in cultivated × wild sunflower mapping populations.

  19. Diversification and the rate of molecular evolution: no evidence of a link in mammals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bromham Lindell

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Recent research has indicated a positive association between rates of molecular evolution and diversification in a number of taxa. However debate continues concerning the universality and cause of this relationship. Here, we present the first systematic investigation of this relationship within the mammals. We use phylogenetically independent sister-pair comparisons to test for a relationship between substitution rates and clade size at a number of taxonomic levels. Total, non-synonymous and synonymous substitution rates were estimated from mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequences. Results We found no evidence for an association between clade size and substitution rates in mammals, for either the nuclear or the mitochondrial sequences. We found significant associations between body size and substitution rates, as previously reported. Conclusions Our results present a contrast to previous research, which has reported significant positive associations between substitution rates and diversification for birds, angiosperms and reptiles. There are three possible reasons for the differences between the observed results in mammals versus other clades. First, there may be no link between substitution rates and diversification in mammals. Second, this link may exist, but may be much weaker in mammals than in other clades. Third, the link between substitution rates and diversification may exist in mammals, but may be confounded by other variables.

  20. Diversification and the rate of molecular evolution: no evidence of a link in mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldie, Xavier; Lanfear, Robert; Bromham, Lindell

    2011-10-04

    Recent research has indicated a positive association between rates of molecular evolution and diversification in a number of taxa. However debate continues concerning the universality and cause of this relationship. Here, we present the first systematic investigation of this relationship within the mammals. We use phylogenetically independent sister-pair comparisons to test for a relationship between substitution rates and clade size at a number of taxonomic levels. Total, non-synonymous and synonymous substitution rates were estimated from mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequences. We found no evidence for an association between clade size and substitution rates in mammals, for either the nuclear or the mitochondrial sequences. We found significant associations between body size and substitution rates, as previously reported. Our results present a contrast to previous research, which has reported significant positive associations between substitution rates and diversification for birds, angiosperms and reptiles. There are three possible reasons for the differences between the observed results in mammals versus other clades. First, there may be no link between substitution rates and diversification in mammals. Second, this link may exist, but may be much weaker in mammals than in other clades. Third, the link between substitution rates and diversification may exist in mammals, but may be confounded by other variables.

  1. Back to the sea twice: identifying candidate plant genes for molecular evolution to marine life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wissler, Lothar; Codoñer, Francisco M; Gu, Jenny; Reusch, Thorsten B H; Olsen, Jeanine L; Procaccini, Gabriele; Bornberg-Bauer, Erich

    2011-01-12

    Seagrasses are a polyphyletic group of monocotyledonous angiosperms that have adapted to a completely submerged lifestyle in marine waters. Here, we exploit two collections of expressed sequence tags (ESTs) of two wide-spread and ecologically important seagrass species, the Mediterranean seagrass Posidonia oceanica (L.) Delile and the eelgrass Zostera marina L., which have independently evolved from aquatic ancestors. This replicated, yet independent evolutionary history facilitates the identification of traits that may have evolved in parallel and are possible instrumental candidates for adaptation to a marine habitat. In our study, we provide the first quantitative perspective on molecular adaptations in two seagrass species. By constructing orthologous gene clusters shared between two seagrasses (Z. marina and P. oceanica) and eight distantly related terrestrial angiosperm species, 51 genes could be identified with detection of positive selection along the seagrass branches of the phylogenetic tree. Characterization of these positively selected genes using KEGG pathways and the Gene Ontology uncovered that these genes are mostly involved in translation, metabolism, and photosynthesis. These results provide first insights into which seagrass genes have diverged from their terrestrial counterparts via an initial aquatic stage characteristic of the order and to the derived fully-marine stage characteristic of seagrasses. We discuss how adaptive changes in these processes may have contributed to the evolution towards an aquatic and marine existence.

  2. Evolution of dynamic susceptibility in molecular glass formers-a critical assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brodin, A; Gainaru, C; Porokhonskyy, V; Roessler, E A

    2007-01-01

    Dielectric, depolarized light scattering (LS) and optical Kerr effect (OKE) data are critically discussed in an attempt to achieve a common interpretation of the evolution of dynamic susceptibility in molecular glass formers at temperatures down to the glass transition T g . The so-called intermediate power-law, observed in OKE data below a certain temperature T x , is identified with the excess wing, long since known from dielectric spectroscopy, with a temperature-independent exponent. This is in contrast with several recent analyses that concluded a considerable temperature dependence of spectral shapes. We introduce a new approach to disentangle α-peak and excess wing contributions in the dielectric spectra, which allows for frequency-temperature superposition (FTS) of the α-process at all temperatures above T g . From the LS spectra we conclude, in particular, that FTS holds even at temperatures well above the melting point, i.e. in normal equilibrium liquids. Attempting to correlate the fragility and stretching, our conclusions are opposite to those made previously. Specifically, we observe that a high fragility is associated with a less stretched relaxation function

  3. In-situ Mass Spectrometric Determination of Molecular Structural Evolution at the Solid Electrolyte Interphase in Lithium-Ion Batteries

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhu, Zihua; Zhou, Yufan; Yan, Pengfei; Vemuri, Venkata Rama Ses; Xu, Wu; Zhao, Rui; Wang, Xuelin; Thevuthasan, Suntharampillai; Baer, Donald R.; Wang, Chong M.

    2015-08-19

    Dynamic molecular evolution at solid/liquid electrolyte interface is always a mystery for a rechargeable battery due to the challenge to directly probe/observe the solid/liquid interface under reaction conditions, which in essence appears to be similarly true for all the fields involving solid/liquid phases, such as electrocatalysis, electrodeposition, biofuel conversion, biofilm, and biomineralization, We use in-situ liquid secondary ion mass spectroscopy (SIMS) for the first time to directly observe the molecular structural evolution at the solid electrode/liquid electrolyte interface for a lithium (Li)-ion battery under dynamic operating conditions. We have discovered that the deposition of Li metal on copper electrode leads to the condensation of solvent molecules around the electrode. Chemically, this layer of solvent condensate tends to deplete the salt anion and with low concentration of Li+ ions, which essentially leads to the formation of a lean electrolyte layer adjacent to the electrode and therefore contributes to the overpotential of the cell. This unprecedented molecular level dynamic observation at the solid electrode/liquid electrolyte interface provides vital chemical information that is needed for designing of better battery chemistry for enhanced performance, and ultimately opens new avenues for using liquid SIMS to probe molecular evolution at solid/liquid interface in general.

  4. Wavelength Discrimination in Drosophila Suggests a Role of Rhodopsin 1 in Color Vision

    OpenAIRE

    Garbers, Christian; Wachtler, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Among the five photoreceptor opsins in the eye of Drosophila, Rhodopsin 1 (Rh1) is expressed in the six outer photoreceptors. In a previous study that combined behavioral genetics with computational modeling, we demonstrated that flies can use the signals from Rh1 for color vision. Here, we provide an in-depth computational analysis of wildtype Drosophila wavelength discrimination specifically considering the consequences of different choices of computations in the preprocessing of the behavi...

  5. Studying of Phototransformation of Light Signal by Photoreceptor Pigments - Rhodopsin, Iodopsin and Bacteriorhodopsin

    OpenAIRE

    Ignat Ignatov; Oleg Mosin

    2014-01-01

    This review article views predominately the structure and function of animal and bacterial photoreceptor pigments (rhodopsin, iodopsin, bacteriorhodopsin) and their aspects of nano- and biotechnological usage. On an example of bacteriorhodopsin is described the method of its isolation from purple membranes of photo-organotrophic halobacterium Halobacterium halobium by cellular autolysis by distilled water, processing of bacterial biomass by ultrasound at 22 KHz, alcohol extraction of low and ...

  6. Mutation spectrum of the rhodopsin gene among patients with autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dryja, T.P.; Han, L.B.; Cowley, G.S.; McGee, T.L.; Berson, E.L.

    1991-01-01

    The authors searched for point mutations in every exon of the rhodopsin gene in 150 patients from separate families with autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa. Including the 4 mutations the authors reported previously, they found a total of 17 different mutations that correlate with the disease. Each of these mutations is a single-base substitution corresponding to a single amino acid substitution. Based on current models for the structure of rhodopsin, 3 of the 17 mutant amino acids are normally located on the cytoplasmic side of the protein, 6 in transmembrane domains, and 8 on the intradiscal side. Forty-three of the 150 patients (29%) carry 1 of these mutations, and no patient has more than 1 mutation. In every family with a mutation so far analyzed, the mutation cosegregates with the disease. They found one instance of a mutation in an affected patient that was absent in both unaffected parents (i.e., a new germ-line mutation), indicating that some isolate cases of retinitis pigmentosa carry a mutation of the rhodopsin gene

  7. Molecular evolution of Adh and LEAFY and the phylogenetic utility of their introns in Pyrus (Rosaceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Xiaoyan; Hu, Chunyun; Spooner, David; Liu, Jing; Cao, Jiashu; Teng, Yuanwen

    2011-09-14

    The genus Pyrus belongs to the tribe Pyreae (the former subfamily Maloideae) of the family Rosaceae, and includes one of the most important commercial fruit crops, pear. The phylogeny of Pyrus has not been definitively reconstructed. In our previous efforts, the internal transcribed spacer region (ITS) revealed a poorly resolved phylogeny due to non-concerted evolution of nrDNA arrays. Therefore, introns of low copy nuclear genes (LCNG) are explored here for improved resolution. However, paralogs and lineage sorting are still two challenges for applying LCNGs in phylogenetic studies, and at least two independent nuclear loci should be compared. In this work the second intron of LEAFY and the alcohol dehydrogenase gene (Adh) were selected to investigate their molecular evolution and phylogenetic utility. DNA sequence analyses revealed a complex ortholog and paralog structure of Adh genes in Pyrus and Malus, the pears and apples. Comparisons between sequences from RT-PCR and genomic PCR indicate that some Adh homologs are putatively nonfunctional. A partial region of Adh1 was sequenced for 18 Pyrus species and three subparalogs representing Adh1-1 were identified. These led to poorly resolved phylogenies due to low sequence divergence and the inclusion of putative recombinants. For the second intron of LEAFY, multiple inparalogs were discovered for both LFY1int2 and LFY2int2. LFY1int2 is inadequate for phylogenetic analysis due to lineage sorting of two inparalogs. LFY2int2-N, however, showed a relatively high sequence divergence and led to the best-resolved phylogeny. This study documents the coexistence of outparalogs and inparalogs, and lineage sorting of these paralogs and orthologous copies. It reveals putative recombinants that can lead to incorrect phylogenetic inferences, and presents an improved phylogenetic resolution of Pyrus using LFY2int2-N. Our study represents the first phylogenetic analyses based on LCNGs in Pyrus. Ancient and recent duplications lead

  8. Molecular evolution of Adh and LEAFY and the phylogenetic utility of their introns in Pyrus (Rosaceae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cao Jiashu

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The genus Pyrus belongs to the tribe Pyreae (the former subfamily Maloideae of the family Rosaceae, and includes one of the most important commercial fruit crops, pear. The phylogeny of Pyrus has not been definitively reconstructed. In our previous efforts, the internal transcribed spacer region (ITS revealed a poorly resolved phylogeny due to non-concerted evolution of nrDNA arrays. Therefore, introns of low copy nuclear genes (LCNG are explored here for improved resolution. However, paralogs and lineage sorting are still two challenges for applying LCNGs in phylogenetic studies, and at least two independent nuclear loci should be compared. In this work the second intron of LEAFY and the alcohol dehydrogenase gene (Adh were selected to investigate their molecular evolution and phylogenetic utility. Results DNA sequence analyses revealed a complex ortholog and paralog structure of Adh genes in Pyrus and Malus, the pears and apples. Comparisons between sequences from RT-PCR and genomic PCR indicate that some Adh homologs are putatively nonfunctional. A partial region of Adh1 was sequenced for 18 Pyrus species and three subparalogs representing Adh1-1 were identified. These led to poorly resolved phylogenies due to low sequence divergence and the inclusion of putative recombinants. For the second intron of LEAFY, multiple inparalogs were discovered for both LFY1int2 and LFY2int2. LFY1int2 is inadequate for phylogenetic analysis due to lineage sorting of two inparalogs. LFY2int2-N, however, showed a relatively high sequence divergence and led to the best-resolved phylogeny. This study documents the coexistence of outparalogs and inparalogs, and lineage sorting of these paralogs and orthologous copies. It reveals putative recombinants that can lead to incorrect phylogenetic inferences, and presents an improved phylogenetic resolution of Pyrus using LFY2int2-N. Conclusions Our study represents the first phylogenetic analyses based

  9. Analysis of the complement and molecular evolution of tRNA genes in cow

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barris Wesley C

    2009-04-01

    set of cow tRNA genes that will facilitate further studies in understanding the molecular evolution of cow tRNA genes.

  10. Adaptive molecular evolution of the Major Histocompatibility Complex genes, DRA and DQA, in the genus Equus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamath, Pauline L; Getz, Wayne M

    2011-05-18

    Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC) genes are central to vertebrate immune response and are believed to be under balancing selection by pathogens. This hypothesis has been supported by observations of extremely high polymorphism, elevated nonsynonymous to synonymous base pair substitution rates and trans-species polymorphisms at these loci. In equids, the organization and variability of this gene family has been described, however the full extent of diversity and selection is unknown. As selection is not expected to act uniformly on a functional gene, maximum likelihood codon-based models of selection that allow heterogeneity in selection across codon positions can be valuable for examining MHC gene evolution and the molecular basis for species adaptations. We investigated the evolution of two class II MHC genes of the Equine Lymphocyte Antigen (ELA), DRA and DQA, in the genus Equus with the addition of novel alleles identified in plains zebra (E. quagga, formerly E. burchelli). We found that both genes exhibited a high degree of polymorphism and inter-specific sharing of allele lineages. To our knowledge, DRA allelic diversity was discovered to be higher than has ever been observed in vertebrates. Evidence was also found to support a duplication of the DQA locus. Selection analyses, evaluated in terms of relative rates of nonsynonymous to synonymous mutations (dN/dS) averaged over the gene region, indicated that the majority of codon sites were conserved and under purifying selection (dN

  11. Adaptive molecular evolution of the Major Histocompatibility Complex genes, DRA and DQA, in the genus Equus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Getz Wayne M

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC genes are central to vertebrate immune response and are believed to be under balancing selection by pathogens. This hypothesis has been supported by observations of extremely high polymorphism, elevated nonsynonymous to synonymous base pair substitution rates and trans-species polymorphisms at these loci. In equids, the organization and variability of this gene family has been described, however the full extent of diversity and selection is unknown. As selection is not expected to act uniformly on a functional gene, maximum likelihood codon-based models of selection that allow heterogeneity in selection across codon positions can be valuable for examining MHC gene evolution and the molecular basis for species adaptations. Results We investigated the evolution of two class II MHC genes of the Equine Lymphocyte Antigen (ELA, DRA and DQA, in the genus Equus with the addition of novel alleles identified in plains zebra (E. quagga, formerly E. burchelli. We found that both genes exhibited a high degree of polymorphism and inter-specific sharing of allele lineages. To our knowledge, DRA allelic diversity was discovered to be higher than has ever been observed in vertebrates. Evidence was also found to support a duplication of the DQA locus. Selection analyses, evaluated in terms of relative rates of nonsynonymous to synonymous mutations (dN/dS averaged over the gene region, indicated that the majority of codon sites were conserved and under purifying selection (dN dS. However, the most likely evolutionary codon models allowed for variable rates of selection across codon sites at both loci and, at the DQA, supported the hypothesis of positive selection acting on specific sites. Conclusions Observations of elevated genetic diversity and trans-species polymorphisms supported the conclusion that balancing selection may be acting on these loci. Furthermore, at the DQA, positive selection was

  12. Molecular Evolution and Emergence of H5N6 Avian Influenza Virus in Central China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, Yingying; Chen, Mingyue; Yang, Jiayun; Jia, Yane; Han, Shufang; Holmes, Edward C; Cui, Jie

    2017-06-15

    H5N6 avian influenza virus (AIV) has posed a potential threat to public health since its emergence in China in 2013. To understand the evolution and emergence of H5N6 AIV in the avian population, we performed molecular surveillance of live poultry markets (LPMs) in Wugang Prefecture, Hunan Province, in central China, during 2014 and 2015. Wugang Prefecture is located on the Eastern Asian-Australian migratory bird flyway, and a human death due to an H5N6 virus was reported in the prefecture on 21 November 2016. In total, we sampled and sequenced the complete genomes of 175 H5N6 AIVs. Notably, our analysis revealed that H5N6 AIVs contain at least six genotypes arising from segment reassortment, including a rare variant that possesses an HA gene derived from H5N1 clade 2.3.2 and a novel NP gene that has its origins with H7N3 viruses. In addition, phylogenetic analysis revealed that genetically similar H5N6 AIVs tend to cluster according to their geographic regions of origin. These results help to reveal the evolutionary behavior of influenza viruses prior to their emergence in humans. IMPORTANCE The newly emerged H5N6 influenza A virus has caused more than 10 human deaths in China since 2013. In November 2016, a human death due to an H5N6 virus, in Wugang Prefecture, Hunan Province, was confirmed by the WHO. To better understand the evolution and emergence of H5N6 viruses, we surveyed live poultry markets (LPMs) in Wugang Prefecture before the reported human death, with a focus on revealing the diversity and genomic origins of H5N6 in birds during 2014 and 2015. In general, H5N6 viruses in this region were most closely related to H5N1 clade 2.3.4.4, with the exception of one virus with an HA gene derived from clade 2.3.2 such that it represents a novel reassortant. Clearly, the ongoing surveillance of LPMs is central to monitoring the emergence of pathogenic influenza viruses. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Microbiology.

  13. 16O+16O molecular nature of the superdeformed band of 32S and the evolution of the molecular structure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kimura, Masaaki; Horiuchi, Hisashi

    2004-01-01

    The relation between the superdeformed band of 32 S and 16 O+ 16 O molecular bands is studied by the deformed-basis antisymmetrized molecular dynamics with the Gogny D1S force. It is found that the obtained superdeformed band members of S have a considerable amount of the 16 O+ 16 O component. Above the superdeformed band, we have obtained two excited rotational bands which have more prominent character of the 16 O+ 16 O molecular band. These three rotational bands are regarded as a series of 16 O+ 16 O molecular bands which were predicted by using the unique 16 O- 16 O optical potential. As the excitation energy and principal quantum number of the relative motion increase, the 16 O+ 16 O cluster structure becomes more prominent but at the same time, the band members are fragmented into several states

  14. Molecular evolution of multiple-level control of heme biosynthesis pathway in animal kingdom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tzou, Wen-Shyong; Chu, Ying; Lin, Tzung-Yi; Hu, Chin-Hwa; Pai, Tun-Wen; Liu, Hsin-Fu; Lin, Han-Jia; Cases, Ildeofonso; Rojas, Ana; Sanchez, Mayka; You, Zong-Ye; Hsu, Ming-Wei

    2014-01-01

    Adaptation of enzymes in a metabolic pathway can occur not only through changes in amino acid sequences but also through variations in transcriptional activation, mRNA splicing and mRNA translation. The heme biosynthesis pathway, a linear pathway comprised of eight consecutive enzymes in animals, provides researchers with ample information for multiple types of evolutionary analyses performed with respect to the position of each enzyme in the pathway. Through bioinformatics analysis, we found that the protein-coding sequences of all enzymes in this pathway are under strong purifying selection, from cnidarians to mammals. However, loose evolutionary constraints are observed for enzymes in which self-catalysis occurs. Through comparative genomics, we found that in animals, the first intron of the enzyme-encoding genes has been co-opted for transcriptional activation of the genes in this pathway. Organisms sense the cellular content of iron, and through iron-responsive elements in the 5' untranslated regions of mRNAs and the intron-exon boundary regions of pathway genes, translational inhibition and exon choice in enzymes may be enabled, respectively. Pathway product (heme)-mediated negative feedback control can affect the transport of pathway enzymes into the mitochondria as well as the ubiquitin-mediated stability of enzymes. Remarkably, the positions of these controls on pathway activity are not ubiquitous but are biased towards the enzymes in the upstream portion of the pathway. We revealed that multiple-level controls on the activity of the heme biosynthesis pathway depend on the linear depth of the enzymes in the pathway, indicating a new strategy for discovering the molecular constraints that shape the evolution of a metabolic pathway.

  15. Molecular Evolution of the Substrate Specificity of Chloroplastic Aldolases/Rubisco Lysine Methyltransferases in Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Sheng; Martin-Laffon, Jacqueline; Mininno, Morgane; Gigarel, Océane; Brugière, Sabine; Bastien, Olivier; Tardif, Marianne; Ravanel, Stéphane; Alban, Claude

    2016-04-04

    Rubisco and fructose-1,6-bisphosphate aldolases (FBAs) are involved in CO2 fixation in chloroplasts. Both enzymes are trimethylated at a specific lysine residue by the chloroplastic protein methyltransferase LSMT. Genes coding LSMT are present in all plant genomes but the methylation status of the substrates varies in a species-specific manner. For example, chloroplastic FBAs are naturally trimethylated in both Pisum sativum and Arabidopsis thaliana, whereas the Rubisco large subunit is trimethylated only in the former species. The in vivo methylation status of aldolases and Rubisco matches the catalytic properties of AtLSMT and PsLSMT, which are able to trimethylate FBAs or FBAs and Rubisco, respectively. Here, we created chimera and site-directed mutants of monofunctional AtLSMT and bifunctional PsLSMT to identify the molecular determinants responsible for substrate specificity. Our results indicate that the His-Ala/Pro-Trp triad located in the central part of LSMT enzymes is the key motif to confer the capacity to trimethylate Rubisco. Two of the critical residues are located on a surface loop outside the methyltransferase catalytic site. We observed a strict correlation between the presence of the triad motif and the in vivo methylation status of Rubisco. The distribution of the motif into a phylogenetic tree further suggests that the ancestral function of LSMT was FBA trimethylation. In a recent event during higher plant evolution, this function evolved in ancestors of Fabaceae, Cucurbitaceae, and Rosaceae to include Rubisco as an additional substrate to the archetypal enzyme. Our study provides insight into mechanisms by which SET-domain protein methyltransferases evolve new substrate specificity. Copyright © 2016 The Author. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Molecular Evolution and Genetic Variation of G2-Like Transcription Factor Genes in Maize.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fang Liu

    Full Text Available The productivity of maize (Zea mays L. depends on the development of chloroplasts, and G2-like transcription factors play a central role in regulating chloroplast development. In this study, we identified 59 G2-like genes in the B73 maize genome and systematically analyzed these genes at the molecular and evolutionary levels. Based on gene structure character, motif compositions and phylogenetic analysis, maize G2-like genes (ZmG1- ZmG59 were divided into seven groups (I-VII. By synteny analysis, 18 collinear gene pairs and strongly conserved microsyntny among regions hosting G2-like genes across maize and sorghum were found. Here, we showed that the vast majority of ZmG gene duplications resulted from whole genome duplication events rather than tandem duplications. After gene duplication events, some ZmG genes were silenced. The functions of G2-like genes were multifarious and most genes that are expressed in green tissues may relate to maize photosynthesis. The qRT-PCR showed that the expression of these genes was sensitive to low temperature and drought. Furthermore, we analyzed differences of ZmGs specific to cultivars in temperate and tropical regions at the population level. Interestingly, the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP analysis revealed that nucleotide polymorphism associated with different temperature zones. Above all, G2-like genes were highly conserved during evolution, but polymorphism could be caused due to a different geographical location. Moreover, G2-like genes might be related to cold and drought stresses.

  17. Rapid molecular evolution across amniotes of the IIS/TOR network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGaugh, Suzanne E; Bronikowski, Anne M; Kuo, Chih-Horng; Reding, Dawn M; Addis, Elizabeth A; Flagel, Lex E; Janzen, Fredric J; Schwartz, Tonia S

    2015-06-02

    The insulin/insulin-like signaling and target of rapamycin (IIS/TOR) network regulates lifespan and reproduction, as well as metabolic diseases, cancer, and aging. Despite its vital role in health, comparative analyses of IIS/TOR have been limited to invertebrates and mammals. We conducted an extensive evolutionary analysis of the IIS/TOR network across 66 amniotes with 18 newly generated transcriptomes from nonavian reptiles and additional available genomes/transcriptomes. We uncovered rapid and extensive molecular evolution between reptiles (including birds) and mammals: (i) the IIS/TOR network, including the critical nodes insulin receptor substrate (IRS) and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K), exhibit divergent evolutionary rates between reptiles and mammals; (ii) compared with a proxy for the rest of the genome, genes of the IIS/TOR extracellular network exhibit exceptionally fast evolutionary rates; and (iii) signatures of positive selection and coevolution of the extracellular network suggest reptile- and mammal-specific interactions between members of the network. In reptiles, positively selected sites cluster on the binding surfaces of insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1), IGF1 receptor (IGF1R), and insulin receptor (INSR); whereas in mammals, positively selected sites clustered on the IGF2 binding surface, suggesting that these hormone-receptor binding affinities are targets of positive selection. Further, contrary to reports that IGF2R binds IGF2 only in marsupial and placental mammals, we found positively selected sites clustered on the hormone binding surface of reptile IGF2R that suggest that IGF2R binds to IGF hormones in diverse taxa and may have evolved in reptiles. These data suggest that key IIS/TOR paralogs have sub- or neofunctionalized between mammals and reptiles and that this network may underlie fundamental life history and physiological differences between these amniote sister clades.

  18. Is ultra-violet radiation the main force shaping molecular evolution of varicella-zoster virus?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-01

    Background Varicella (chickenpox) exhibits a characteristic epidemiological pattern which is associated with climate. In general, primary infections in tropical regions are comparatively less frequent among children than in temperate regions. This peculiarity regarding varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection among certain age groups in tropical regions results in increased susceptibility during adulthood in these regions. Moreover, this disease shows a cyclic behavior in which the number of cases increases significantly during winter and spring. This observation further supports the participation of environmental factors in global epidemiology of chickenpox. However, the underlying mechanisms responsible for this distinctive disease behavior are not understood completely. In a recent publication, Philip S. Rice has put forward an interesting hypothesis suggesting that ultra-violet (UV) radiation is the major environmental factor driving the molecular evolution of VZV. Discussion While we welcomed the attempt to explain the mechanisms controlling VZV transmission and distribution, we argue that Rice's hypothesis takes lightly the circulation of the so called "temperate VZV genotypes" in tropical regions and, to certain degree, overlooks the predominance of such lineages in certain non-temperate areas. Here, we further discuss and present new information about the overwhelming dominance of temperate VZV genotypes in Mexico regardless of geographical location and climate. Summary UV radiation does not satisfactorily explain the distribution of VZV genotypes in different tropical and temperate regions of Mexico. Additionally, the cyclic behavior of varicella does not shown significant differences between regions with different climates in the country. More studies should be conducted to identify the factors directly involved in viral spreading. A better understanding of the modes of transmissions exploited by VZV and their effect on viral fitness is likely to facilitate

  19. Is ultra-violet radiation the main force shaping molecular evolution of varicella-zoster virus?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Escobar-Gutiérrez Alejandro

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Varicella (chickenpox exhibits a characteristic epidemiological pattern which is associated with climate. In general, primary infections in tropical regions are comparatively less frequent among children than in temperate regions. This peculiarity regarding varicella-zoster virus (VZV infection among certain age groups in tropical regions results in increased susceptibility during adulthood in these regions. Moreover, this disease shows a cyclic behavior in which the number of cases increases significantly during winter and spring. This observation further supports the participation of environmental factors in global epidemiology of chickenpox. However, the underlying mechanisms responsible for this distinctive disease behavior are not understood completely. In a recent publication, Philip S. Rice has put forward an interesting hypothesis suggesting that ultra-violet (UV radiation is the major environmental factor driving the molecular evolution of VZV. Discussion While we welcomed the attempt to explain the mechanisms controlling VZV transmission and distribution, we argue that Rice's hypothesis takes lightly the circulation of the so called "temperate VZV genotypes" in tropical regions and, to certain degree, overlooks the predominance of such lineages in certain non-temperate areas. Here, we further discuss and present new information about the overwhelming dominance of temperate VZV genotypes in Mexico regardless of geographical location and climate. Summary UV radiation does not satisfactorily explain the distribution of VZV genotypes in different tropical and temperate regions of Mexico. Additionally, the cyclic behavior of varicella does not shown significant differences between regions with different climates in the country. More studies should be conducted to identify the factors directly involved in viral spreading. A better understanding of the modes of transmissions exploited by VZV and their effect on viral

  20. The molecular evolution of cytochrome P450 genes within and between drosophila species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Good, Robert T; Gramzow, Lydia; Battlay, Paul; Sztal, Tamar; Batterham, Philip; Robin, Charles

    2014-04-20

    We map 114 gene gains and 74 gene losses in the P450 gene family across the phylogeny of 12 Drosophila species by examining the congruence of gene trees and species trees. Although the number of P450 genes varies from 74 to 94 in the species examined, we infer that there were at least 77 P450 genes in the ancestral Drosophila genome. One of the most striking observations in the data set is the elevated loss of P450 genes in the Drosophila sechellia lineage. The gain and loss events are not evenly distributed among the P450 genes-with 30 genes showing no gene gains or losses whereas others show as many as 20 copy number changes among the species examined. The P450 gene clades showing the fewest number of gene gain and loss events tend to be those evolving with the most purifying selection acting on the protein sequences, although there are exceptions, such as the rapid rate of amino acid replacement observed in the single copy phantom (Cyp306a1) gene. Within D. melanogaster, we observe gene copy number polymorphism in ten P450 genes including multiple cases of interparalog chimeras. Nonallelic homologous recombination (NAHR) has been associated with deleterious mutations in humans, but here we provide a second possible example of an NAHR event in insect P450s being adaptive. Specifically, we find that a polymorphic Cyp12a4/Cyp12a5 chimera correlates with resistance to an insecticide. Although we observe such interparalog exchange in our within-species data sets, we have little evidence of it between species, raising the possibility that such events may occur more frequently than appreciated but are masked by subsequent sequence change. © The Author(s) 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  1. Evolution of man in the light of molecular genetics: a review. Part I. Our evolutionary history and genomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Portin, Petter

    2007-07-01

    The discovery in the mid 1970s of efficient methods of DNA sequencing and their subsequent development into more and more rapid procedures followed by sequencing the genomes of many species, including man in 2001, revolutionised the whole of biology. Remarkably, new light could be cast on the evolutionary relations of different species, and the tempo and mode of evolution within a given species, notably man, could quantitatively be illuminated including ongoing evolution possibly involving also the size of the brains. This review is a short summary of the results of the molecular genetic investigations of human evolution including the time and place of the formation of our species, our evolutionary relation to the closest living species relatives as well as extinct forms of the genus Homo. The nature and amount of genetic polymorphism in man is also considered with special emphasis on the causes of this variation, and the role of natural selection in human evolution. A consensus about the mosaic nature of our genome and the rather dynamic structure of our ancestral population is gradually emerging. The modern gene pool has most likely been contributed to several different ancestral demes either before or after the emergence of the anatomically modern human phenotype in the extent that even the nature of the evolutionary lineage leading to the anatomically modern man as a distinct biological species is disputable. Regulation of the function of genes, as well as the evolution of brains will be dealt with in the second part of this review.

  2. Substructured multibody molecular dynamics.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grest, Gary Stephen; Stevens, Mark Jackson; Plimpton, Steven James; Woolf, Thomas B. (Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD); Lehoucq, Richard B.; Crozier, Paul Stewart; Ismail, Ahmed E.; Mukherjee, Rudranarayan M. (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY); Draganescu, Andrei I.

    2006-11-01

    We have enhanced our parallel molecular dynamics (MD) simulation software LAMMPS (Large-scale Atomic/Molecular Massively Parallel Simulator, lammps.sandia.gov) to include many new features for accelerated simulation including articulated rigid body dynamics via coupling to the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute code POEMS (Parallelizable Open-source Efficient Multibody Software). We use new features of the LAMMPS software package to investigate rhodopsin photoisomerization, and water model surface tension and capillary waves at the vapor-liquid interface. Finally, we motivate the recipes of MD for practitioners and researchers in numerical analysis and computational mechanics.

  3. Combined solid state and solution NMR studies of {alpha},{epsilon}-{sup 15}N labeled bovine rhodopsin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Werner, Karla; Lehner, Ines [Johann Wolfgang Goethe-Universitaet Frankfurt, Center for Biomolecular Magnetic Resonance (Germany); Dhiman, Harpreet Kaur [University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Department of Structural Biology (United States); Richter, Christian; Glaubitz, Clemens; Schwalbe, Harald, E-mail: schwalbe@nmr.uni-frankfurt.de; Klein-Seetharaman, Judith [Johann Wolfgang Goethe-Universitaet Frankfurt, Center for Biomolecular Magnetic Resonance (Germany); Khorana, H. Gobind [Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Departments of Biology and Chemistry (United States)], E-mail: khorana@mit.edu

    2007-04-15

    Rhodopsin is the visual pigment of the vertebrate rod photoreceptor cell and is the only member of the G protein coupled receptor family for which a crystal structure is available. Towards the study of dynamics in rhodopsin, we report NMR-spectroscopic investigations of {alpha},{epsilon}-{sup 15}N-tryptophan labeled rhodopsin in detergent micelles and reconstituted in phospholipids. Using a combination of solid state {sup 13}C,{sup 15}N-REDOR and HETCOR experiments of all possible {sup 13}C'{sub i-1} carbonyl/{sup 15}N{sub i}-tryptophan isotope labeled amide pairs, and H/D exchange {sup 1}H,{sup 15}N-HSQC experiments conducted in solution, we assigned chemical shifts to all five rhodopsin tryptophan backbone {sup 15}N nuclei and partially to their bound protons. {sup 1}H,{sup 15}N chemical shift assignment was achieved for indole side chains of Trp35{sup 1.30} and Trp175{sup 4.65}. {sup 15}N chemical shifts were found to be similar when comparing those obtained in the native like reconstituted lipid environment and those obtained in detergent micelles for all tryptophans except Trp175{sup 4.65} at the membrane interface. The results suggest that the integrated solution and solid state NMR approach presented provides highly complementary information in the study of structure and dynamics of large membrane proteins like rhodopsin.

  4. Alkylated hydroxylamine derivatives eliminate peripheral retinylidene Schiff bases but cannot enter the retinal binding pocket of light-activated rhodopsin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piechnick, Ronny; Heck, Martin; Sommer, Martha E

    2011-08-23

    Besides Lys-296 in the binding pocket of opsin, all-trans-retinal forms adducts with peripheral lysine residues and phospholipids, thereby mimicking the spectral and chemical properties of metarhodopsin species. These pseudophotoproducts composed of nonspecific retinylidene Schiff bases have long plagued the investigation of rhodopsin deactivation and identification of decay products. We discovered that, while hydroxylamine can enter the retinal binding pocket of light-activated rhodopsin, the modified hydroxylamine compounds o-methylhydroxylamine (mHA), o-ethylhydroxylamine (eHA), o-tert-butylhydroxylamine (t-bHA), and o-(carboxymethyl)hydroxylamine (cmHA) are excluded. However, the alkylated hydroxylamines react quickly and efficiently with exposed retinylidene Schiff bases to form their respective retinal oximes. We further investigated how t-bHA affects light-activated rhodopsin and its interaction with binding partners. We found that both metarhodopsin II (Meta II) and Meta III are resistant to t-bHA, and neither arrestin nor transducin binding is affected by t-bHA. This discovery suggests that the hypothetical solvent channel that opens in light-activated rhodopsin is extremely stringent with regard to size and/or polarity. We believe that alkylated hydroxylamines will prove to be extremely useful reagents for the investigation of rhodopsin activation and decay mechanisms. Furthermore, the use of alkylated hydroxylamines should not be limited to in vitro studies and could help elucidate visual signal transduction mechanisms in the living cells of the retina. © 2011 American Chemical Society

  5. The nearly neutral and selection theories of molecular evolution under the fisher geometrical framework: substitution rate, population size, and complexity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Razeto-Barry, Pablo; Díaz, Javier; Vásquez, Rodrigo A

    2012-06-01

    The general theories of molecular evolution depend on relatively arbitrary assumptions about the relative distribution and rate of advantageous, deleterious, neutral, and nearly neutral mutations. The Fisher geometrical model (FGM) has been used to make distributions of mutations biologically interpretable. We explored an FGM-based molecular model to represent molecular evolutionary processes typically studied by nearly neutral and selection models, but in which distributions and relative rates of mutations with different selection coefficients are a consequence of biologically interpretable parameters, such as the average size of the phenotypic effect of mutations and the number of traits (complexity) of organisms. A variant of the FGM-based model that we called the static regime (SR) represents evolution as a nearly neutral process in which substitution rates are determined by a dynamic substitution process in which the population's phenotype remains around a suboptimum equilibrium fitness produced by a balance between slightly deleterious and slightly advantageous compensatory substitutions. As in previous nearly neutral models, the SR predicts a negative relationship between molecular evolutionary rate and population size; however, SR does not have the unrealistic properties of previous nearly neutral models such as the narrow window of selection strengths in which they work. In addition, the SR suggests that compensatory mutations cannot explain the high rate of fixations driven by positive selection currently found in DNA sequences, contrary to what has been previously suggested. We also developed a generalization of SR in which the optimum phenotype can change stochastically due to environmental or physiological shifts, which we called the variable regime (VR). VR models evolution as an interplay between adaptive processes and nearly neutral steady-state processes. When strong environmental fluctuations are incorporated, the process becomes a selection model

  6. Negative correlation between rates of molecular evolution and flowering cycles in temperate woody bamboos revealed by plastid phylogenomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Peng-Fei; Vorontsova, Maria S; Nanjarisoa, Olinirina Prisca; Razanatsoa, Jacqueline; Guo, Zhen-Hua; Haevermans, Thomas; Li, De-Zhu

    2017-12-21

    Heterogeneous rates of molecular evolution are universal across the tree of life, posing challenges for phylogenetic inference. The temperate woody bamboos (tribe Arundinarieae, Poaceae) are noted for their extremely slow molecular evolutionary rates, supposedly caused by their mysterious monocarpic reproduction. However, the correlation between substitution rates and flowering cycles has not been formally tested. Here we present 15 newly sequenced plastid genomes of temperate woody bamboos, including the first genomes ever sequenced from Madagascar representatives. A data matrix of 46 plastid genomes representing all 12 lineages of Arundinarieae was assembled for phylogenetic and molecular evolutionary analyses. We conducted phylogenetic analyses using different sequences (e.g., coding and noncoding) combined with different data partitioning schemes, revealing conflicting relationships involving internodes among several lineages. A great difference in branch lengths were observed among the major lineages, and topological inconsistency could be attributed to long-branch attraction (LBA). Using clock model-fitting by maximum likelihood and Bayesian approaches, we furthermore demonstrated extensive rate variation among these major lineages. Rate accelerations mainly occurred for the isolated lineages with limited species diversification, totaling 11 rate shifts during the tribe's evolution. Using linear regression analysis, we found a negative correlation between rates of molecular evolution and flowering cycles for Arundinarieae, notwithstanding that the correlation maybe insignificant when taking the phylogenetic structure into account. Using the temperate woody bamboos as an example, we found further evidence that rate heterogeneity is universal in plants, suggesting that this will pose a challenge for phylogenetic reconstruction of bamboos. The bamboos with longer flowering cycles tend to evolve more slowly than those with shorter flowering cycles, in accordance

  7. Molecular evolution of ependymin and the phylogenetic resolution of early divergences among euteleost fishes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortí, G; Meyer, A

    1996-04-01

    The rate and pattern of DNA evolution of ependymin, a single-copy gene coding for a highly expressed glycoprotein in the brain matrix of teleost fishes, is characterized and its phylogenetic utility for fish systematics is assessed. DNA sequences were determined from catfish, electric fish, and characiforms and compared with published ependymin sequences from cyprinids, salmon, pike, and herring. Among these groups, ependymin amino acid sequences were highly divergent (up to 60% sequence difference), but had surprisingly similar hydropathy profiles and invariant glycosylation sites, suggesting that functional properties of the proteins are conserved. Comparison of base composition at third codon positions and introns revealed AT-rich introns and GC-rich third codon positions, suggesting that the biased codon usage observed might not be due to mutational bias. Phylogenetic information content of third codon positions was surprisingly high and sufficient to recover the most basal nodes of the tree, in spite of the observation that pairwise distances (at third codon positions) were well above the presumed saturation level. This finding can be explained by the high proportion of phylogenetically informative nonsynonymous changes at third codon positions among these highly divergent proteins. Ependymin DNA sequences have established the first molecular evidence for the monophyly of a group containing salmonids and esociforms. In addition, ependymin suggests a sister group relationship of electric fish (Gymnotiformes) and Characiformes, constituting a significant departure from currently accepted classifications. However, relationships among characiform lineages were not completely resolved by ependymin sequences in spite of seemingly appropriate levels of variation among taxa and considerably low levels of homoplasy in the data (consistency index = 0.7). If the diversification of Characiformes took place in an "explosive" manner, over a relatively short period of time

  8. Molecular evolution of the mitochondrial 12S rRNA in Ungulata (mammalia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Douzery, E; Catzeflis, F M

    1995-11-01

    The complete 12S rRNA gene has been sequenced in 4 Ungulata (hoofed eutherians) and 1 marsupial and compared to 38 available mammalian sequences in order to investigate the molecular evolution of the mitochondrial small-subunit ribosomal RNA molecule. Ungulata were represented by one artiodactyl (the collared peccary, Tayassu tajacu, suborder Suiformes), two perissodactyls (the Grevy's zebra, Equus grevyi, suborder Hippomorpha; the white rhinoceros, Ceratotherium simum, suborder Ceratomorpha), and one hyracoid (the tree hyrax, Dendrohyrax dorsalis). The fifth species was a marsupial, the eastern gray kangaroo (Macropus giganteus). Several transition/transversion biases characterized the pattern of changes between mammalian 12S rRNA molecules. A bias toward transitions was found among 12S rRNA sequences of Ungulata, illustrating the general bias exhibited by ribosomal and protein-encoding genes of the mitochondrial genome. The derivation of a mammalian 12S rRNA secondary structure model from the comparison of 43 eutherian and marsupial sequences evidenced a pronounced bias against transversions in stems. Moreover, transversional compensatory changes were rare events within double-stranded regions of the ribosomal RNA. Evolutionary characteristics of the 12S rRNA were compared with those of the nuclear 18S and 28S rRNAs. From a phylogenetic point of view, transitions, transversions and indels in stems as well as transversional and indels events in loops gave congruent results for comparisons within orders. Some compensatory changes in double-stranded regions and some indels in single-stranded regions also constituted diagnostic events. The 12S rRNA molecule confirmed the monophyly of infraorder Pecora and order Cetacea and demonstrated the monophyly of the suborder Ruminantia was not supported and the branching pattern between Cetacea and the artiodacytyl suborders Ruminantia and Suiformes was not established. The monophyly of the order Perissodactyla was evidenced

  9. The endemic gastropod fauna of Lake Titicaca: correlation between molecular evolution and hydrographic history.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kroll, Oliver; Hershler, Robert; Albrecht, Christian; Terrazas, Edmundo M; Apaza, Roberto; Fuentealba, Carmen; Wolff, Christian; Wilke, Thomas

    2012-07-01

    Lake Titicaca, situated in the Altiplano high plateau, is the only ancient lake in South America. This 2- to 3-My-old (where My is million years) water body has had a complex history that included at least five major hydrological phases during the Pleistocene. It is generally assumed that these physical events helped shape the evolutionary history of the lake's biota. Herein, we study an endemic species assemblage in Lake Titicaca, composed of members of the microgastropod genus Heleobia, to determine whether the lake has functioned as a reservoir of relic species or the site of local diversification, to evaluate congruence of the regional paleohydrology and the evolutionary history of this assemblage, and to assess whether the geographic distributions of endemic lineages are hierarchical. Our phylogenetic analyses indicate that the Titicaca/Altiplano Heleobia fauna (together with few extralimital taxa) forms a species flock. A molecular clock analysis suggests that the most recent common ancestor (MRCAs) of the Altiplano taxa evolved 0.53 (0.28-0.80) My ago and the MRCAs of the Altiplano taxa and their extralimital sister group 0.92 (0.46-1.52) My ago. The endemic species of Lake Titicaca are younger than the lake itself, implying primarily intralacustrine speciation. Moreover, the timing of evolutionary branching events and the ages of two precursors of Lake Titicaca, lakes Cabana and Ballivián, is congruent. Although Lake Titicaca appears to have been the principal site of speciation for the regional Heleobia fauna, the contemporary spatial patterns of endemism have been masked by immigration and/or emigration events of local riverine taxa, which we attribute to the unstable hydrographic history of the Altiplano. Thus, a hierarchical distribution of endemism is not evident, but instead there is a single genetic break between two regional clades. We also discuss our findings in relation to studies of other regional biota and suggest that salinity tolerance was

  10. Molecular phylogenetics, historical biogeography, and chromosome number evolution of Portulaca (Portulacaceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ocampo, Gilberto; Columbus, J Travis

    2012-04-01

    Portulaca is the only genus in Portulacaceae and has ca. 100 species distributed worldwide, mainly in the tropics and subtropics. Molecular data place the genus as one of the closest relatives of Cactaceae, but phylogenetic relationships within Portulaca are barely known. This study samples 59 species of Portulaca, 10 infraspecific taxa, and three cultivars, including multiple samples of widespread species. The sampled taxa represent all subgenera in the classifications of von Poellnitz (1934), Legrand (1958), and Geesink (1969) and come from around the world. Nuclear ITS and chloroplast ndhF, trnT-psbD intergenic spacer, and ndhA intron DNA sequences were analyzed using maximum likelihood and Bayesian methods to produce a hypothesis of relationships within Portulaca. Divergence times were estimated using Hawaiian endemics for calibration, and biogeographical patterns were examined using a Bayes-DIVA approach. In addition, the evolution of chromosome numbers in the genus was investigated using probabilistic models. The analyses strongly support the monophyly of Portulaca, with an age of the most recent common ancestor (MRCA) of 23 Myr. Within Portulaca are two major lineages: the OL clade (comprising opposite-leaved species) distributed in Africa, Asia, and Australia, and the AL clade (comprising alternate to subopposite-leaved species), which is more widespread and originated in the New World. Sedopsis, a genus sometimes recognized as distinct from Portulaca based on a long corolla tube, is nested within the OL clade and does not merit taxonomic recognition. Samples of Portulaca grandiflora, Portulaca halimoides, and Portulaca oleracea were found to be non-monophyletic. It is hypothesized that the ancestral distribution area of Portulaca included southern hemisphere continents and Asia. The OL clade remained restricted to the Old World (except Portulaca quadrifida, a pantropical weed), while the AL clade, with a South American origin, was able to disperse multiple

  11. Genome-Wide Identification, Molecular Evolution, and Expression Profiling Analysis of Pectin Methylesterase Inhibitor Genes in Brassica campestris ssp. chinensis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tingting Liu

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Pectin methylesterase inhibitor genes (PMEIs are a large multigene family and play crucial roles in cell wall modifications in plant growth and development. Here, a comprehensive analysis of the PMEI gene family in Brassica campestris, an important leaf vegetable, was performed. We identified 100 Brassica campestris PMEI genes (BcPMEIs, among which 96 BcPMEIs were unevenly distributed on 10 chromosomes and nine tandem arrays containing 20 BcPMEIs were found. We also detected 80 pairs of syntenic PMEI orthologs. These findings indicated that whole-genome triplication (WGT and tandem duplication (TD were the main mechanisms accounting for the current number of BcPMEIs. In evolution, BcPMEIs were retained preferentially and biasedly, consistent with the gene balance hypothesis and two-step theory, respectively. The molecular evolution analysis of BcPMEIs manifested that they evolved through purifying selection and the divergence time is in accordance with the WGT data of B. campestris. To obtain the functional information of BcPMEIs, the expression patterns in five tissues and the cis-elements distributed in promoter regions were investigated. This work can provide a better understanding of the molecular evolution and biological function of PMEIs in B. campestris.

  12. Molecular recognition of the environment and mechanisms of the origin of species in quantum-like modeling of evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melkikh, Alexey V; Khrennikov, Andrei

    2017-11-01

    A review of the mechanisms of speciation is performed. The mechanisms of the evolution of species, taking into account the feedback of the state of the environment and mechanisms of the emergence of complexity, are considered. It is shown that these mechanisms, at the molecular level, cannot work steadily in terms of classical mechanics. Quantum mechanisms of changes in the genome, based on the long-range interaction potential between biologically important molecules, are proposed as one of possible explanation. Different variants of interactions of the organism and environment based on molecular recognition and leading to new species origins are considered. Experiments to verify the model are proposed. This bio-physical study is completed by the general operational model of based on quantum information theory. The latter is applied to model of epigenetic evolution. We briefly present the basics of the quantum-like approach to modeling of bio-informational processes. This approach is illustrated by the quantum-like model of epigenetic evolution. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Modeling Photo-Bleaching Kinetics to Create High Resolution Maps of Rod Rhodopsin in the Human Retina.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Ehler

    Full Text Available We introduce and describe a novel non-invasive in-vivo method for mapping local rod rhodopsin distribution in the human retina over a 30-degree field. Our approach is based on analyzing the brightening of detected lipofuscin autofluorescence within small pixel clusters in registered imaging sequences taken with a commercial 488nm confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscope (cSLO over a 1 minute period. We modeled the kinetics of rhodopsin bleaching by applying variational optimization techniques from applied mathematics. The physical model and the numerical analysis with its implementation are outlined in detail. This new technique enables the creation of spatial maps of the retinal rhodopsin and retinal pigment epithelium (RPE bisretinoid distribution with an ≈ 50μm resolution.

  14. Modeling Photo-Bleaching Kinetics to Create High Resolution Maps of Rod Rhodopsin in the Human Retina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehler, Martin; Dobrosotskaya, Julia; Cunningham, Denise; Wong, Wai T.; Chew, Emily Y.; Czaja, Wojtek; Bonner, Robert F.

    2015-01-01

    We introduce and describe a novel non-invasive in-vivo method for mapping local rod rhodopsin distribution in the human retina over a 30-degree field. Our approach is based on analyzing the brightening of detected lipofuscin autofluorescence within small pixel clusters in registered imaging sequences taken with a commercial 488nm confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscope (cSLO) over a 1 minute period. We modeled the kinetics of rhodopsin bleaching by applying variational optimization techniques from applied mathematics. The physical model and the numerical analysis with its implementation are outlined in detail. This new technique enables the creation of spatial maps of the retinal rhodopsin and retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) bisretinoid distribution with an ≈ 50μm resolution. PMID:26196397

  15. Opsin cDNA sequences of a UV and green rhodopsin of the satyrine butterfly Bicyclus anynana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanhoutte, K J A; Eggen, B J L; Janssen, J J M; Stavenga, D G

    2002-11-01

    The cDNAs of an ultraviolet (UV) and long-wavelength (LW) (green) absorbing rhodopsin of the bush brown Bicyclus anynana were partially identified. The UV sequence, encoding 377 amino acids, is 76-79% identical to the UV sequences of the papilionids Papilio glaucus and Papilio xuthus and the moth Manduca sexta. A dendrogram derived from aligning the amino acid sequences reveals an equidistant position of Bicyclus between Papilio and Manduca. The sequence of the green opsin cDNA fragment, which encodes 242 amino acids, represents six of the seven transmembrane regions. At the amino acid level, this fragment is more than 80% identical to the corresponding LW opsin sequences of Dryas, Heliconius, Papilio (rhodopsin 2) and Manduca. Whereas three LW absorbing rhodopsins were identified in the papilionid butterflies, only one green opsin was found in B. anynana.

  16. Molecular phylogeny, population genetics, and evolution of heterocystous cyanobacteria using nifH gene sequences

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Singh, P.; Singh, S. S.; Elster, Josef; Mishra, A. K.

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 250, č. 3 (2013), s. 751-764 ISSN 0033-183X Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : evolution * heterocystous cyanobacteria * nifH gene Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 3.171, year: 2013

  17. Molecular bases for parallel evolution of translucent bracts in an alpine "glasshouse" plant Rheum alexandrae (Polygonaceae)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Liu, B. B.; Opgenoorth, L.; Miehe, G.; Zhang, D.-Y.; Wan, D.-S.; Zhao, C.-M.; Jia, Dong-Rui; Liu, J.-Q.

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 51, č. 2 (2013), s. 134-141 ISSN 1674-4918 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : cDNA-AFLPs * parallel evolution * adaptations, mutations, diversity Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.648, year: 2013

  18. Morphological and Molecular Evolution of Flesh Flies of Sarcophaginae (Diptera: Sarcophagidae)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Buenaventura Ruiz, Ingrid Eliana

    ))). Peckiamyia was sister to Retrocitomyia,and Titanogrypa was sister to Villegasia, which together with Engelimyia formed a lineageemerging in a basal divergence with regard to the clade with no median stylus. Alternativehomology interpretations of the median stylus were also studied and tested......, this will help to understand male genitalia evolution and the use of these8structures as a source of phylogenetic information, but it could also provide a contribution to ourgeneral understanding on insect morphological evolution....

  19. Plant cell walls throughout evolution: towards a molecular understanding of their design principles

    OpenAIRE

    Sarkar, Purbasha

    2009-01-01

    Throughout their life, plants typically remain in one location utilizing sunlight for the synthesis of carbohydrates, which serve as their sole source of energy as well as building blocks of a protective extracellular matrix, called the cell wall. During the course of evolution, plants have repeatedly adapted to their respective niche,which is reflected in the changes of their body plan and the specific design of cell walls. Cell walls not only changed throughout evolution but also are consta...

  20. Color vision of the coelacanth (Latimeria chalumnae) and adaptive evolution of rhodopsin (RH1) and rhodopsin-like (RH2) pigments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yokoyama, S

    2000-01-01

    The coelacanth, a "living fossil," lives at a depth of about 200 m near the coast of the Comoros archipelago in the Indian Ocean and receives only a narrow range of light at about 480 nm. To see the entire range of "color" the Comoran coelacanth appears to use only rod-specific RH1 and cone-specific RH2 visual pigments, with the optimum light sensitivities (lambda max) at 478 nm and 485 nm, respectively. These blue-shifted lambda max values of RH1 and RH2 pigments are fully explained by independent double amino acid replacements E122Q/A292S and E122Q/M207L, respectively. More generally, currently available mutagenesis experiments identify only 10 amino acid changes that shift the lambda max values of visual pigments more than 5 nm. Among these, D83N, E1220, M207L, and A292S are associated strongly with the adaptive blue shifts in the lambda max values of RH1 and RH2 pigments in vertebrates.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tartar Aurélien

    2010-06-01

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

  2. Phylemon 2.0: a suite of web-tools for molecular evolution, phylogenetics, phylogenomics and hypotheses testing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez, Rubén; Serra, François; Tárraga, Joaquín; Medina, Ignacio; Carbonell, José; Pulido, Luis; de María, Alejandro; Capella-Gutíerrez, Salvador; Huerta-Cepas, Jaime; Gabaldón, Toni; Dopazo, Joaquín; Dopazo, Hernán

    2011-07-01

    Phylemon 2.0 is a new release of the suite of web tools for molecular evolution, phylogenetics, phylogenomics and hypotheses testing. It has been designed as a response to the increasing demand of molecular sequence analyses for experts and non-expert users. Phylemon 2.0 has several unique features that differentiates it from other similar web resources: (i) it offers an integrated environment that enables evolutionary analyses, format conversion, file storage and edition of results; (ii) it suggests further analyses, thereby guiding the users through the web server; and (iii) it allows users to design and save phylogenetic pipelines to be used over multiple genes (phylogenomics). Altogether, Phylemon 2.0 integrates a suite of 30 tools covering sequence alignment reconstruction and trimming; tree reconstruction, visualization and manipulation; and evolutionary hypotheses testing.

  3. Phylemon 2.0: a suite of web-tools for molecular evolution, phylogenetics, phylogenomics and hypotheses testing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez, Rubén; Serra, François; Tárraga, Joaquín; Medina, Ignacio; Carbonell, José; Pulido, Luis; de María, Alejandro; Capella-Gutíerrez, Salvador; Huerta-Cepas, Jaime; Gabaldón, Toni; Dopazo, Joaquín; Dopazo, Hernán

    2011-01-01

    Phylemon 2.0 is a new release of the suite of web tools for molecular evolution, phylogenetics, phylogenomics and hypotheses testing. It has been designed as a response to the increasing demand of molecular sequence analyses for experts and non-expert users. Phylemon 2.0 has several unique features that differentiates it from other similar web resources: (i) it offers an integrated environment that enables evolutionary analyses, format conversion, file storage and edition of results; (ii) it suggests further analyses, thereby guiding the users through the web server; and (iii) it allows users to design and save phylogenetic pipelines to be used over multiple genes (phylogenomics). Altogether, Phylemon 2.0 integrates a suite of 30 tools covering sequence alignment reconstruction and trimming; tree reconstruction, visualization and manipulation; and evolutionary hypotheses testing. PMID:21646336

  4. Molecular phylogenetic analysis of Commiphora (Burseraceae) yields insight on the evolution and historical biogeography of an "impossible" genus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weeks, Andrea; Simpson, Beryl B

    2007-01-01

    Expansion of the arid zone of sub-Saharan tropical Africa during the Miocene is posited as a significant contributing factor in the evolution of contemporary African flora. Nevertheless, few molecular phylogenetic studies have tested this hypothesis using reconstructed historical biogeographies of plants within this zone. Here, we present a molecular phylogeny of Commiphora, a predominantly tropical African, arid-adapted tree genus, in order to test the monophyly of its taxonomic sections and identify clades that will help direct future study of this species-rich and geographically widespread taxon. We then use multiple fossil calibrations of Commiphora phylogeny to determine the timing of well-supported diversification events within the genus and interpret these age estimates to determine the relative contribution of vicariance and dispersal in the expansion of Commiphora's geographic range. We find that Commiphora is sister to Vietnamese Bursera tonkinensis and that its crown group radiation corresponds with the onset of the Miocene.

  5. Hydro-chemical study of the evolution of interstellar pre-biotic molecules during the collapse of molecular clouds

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Majumdar, Liton; Das, Ankan; Chakrabarti, Sandip K.; Chakrabarti, Sonali

    2012-01-01

    One of the stumbling blocks for studying the evolution of interstellar molecules is the lack of adequate knowledge about the rate coefficients of various reactions which take place in the interstellar medium and molecular clouds. Some theoretical models of rate coefficients do exist in the literature for computing abundances of complex pre-biotic molecules. So far these have been used to study the abundances of these molecules in space. However, in order to obtain more accurate final compositions in these media, we have calculated the rate coefficients for the formation of some of the most important interstellar pre-biotic molecules by using quantum chemical theory. We use these rates inside our hydro-chemical model to examine the chemical evolution and final abundances of pre-biotic species during the collapsing phase of a proto-star. We find that a significant amount of various pre-biotic molecules could be produced during the collapse phase of a proto-star. We thoroughly study the formation of these molecules via successive neutral-neutral and radical-radical/radical-molecular reactions. We present the time evolution of the chemical species with an emphasis on how the production of these molecules varies with the depth of a cloud. We compare the formation of adenine in interstellar space using our rate-coefficients and using those obtained from existing theoretical models. Formation routes of the pre-biotic molecules are found to be highly dependent on the abundances of the reactive species and the rate coefficients involved in the reactions. The presence of grains strongly affects the abundances of the gas phase species. We also carry out a comparative study between different pathways available for the synthesis of adenine, alanine, glycine and other molecules considered in our network. Despite the huge abundances of the neutral reactive species, production of adenine is found to be strongly dominated by the radical-radical/radical-molecular reaction pathways

  6. Molecular phylogeny and character evolution of the chthamaloid barnacles (Cirripedia:Thoracica)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pérez-Losada, Marcos; Høeg, Jens Thorvald; Crandall, Keith A.

    2012-01-01

    surrounded by whorls of small imbricating plates; but this hypothesis has never been subjected to a rigorous phylogenetic test. Here we used multilocus sequence data and extensive taxon sampling to build a comprehensive phylogeny of the Chthamaloidea as a basis for understanding their morphological evolution......The Chthamaloidea (Balanomorpha) present the most plesiomorphic characters in shell plates and cirri, mouthparts, and oral cone within the acorn barnacles (Thoracica: Sessilia). Due to their importance in understanding both the origin and diversification of the Balanomorpha, the evolution...... of the Chthamaloidea has been debated since Darwin's seminal monographs. Theories of morphological and ontogenetic evolution suggest that the group could have evolved multiple times from pedunculated relatives and that shell plate number diminished gradually (8¿6¿4) from an ancestral state with eight wall plates...

  7. Voltage imaging in vivo with a new class of rhodopsin-based indicators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Douglass, Adam

    2013-03-01

    Reliable, optical detection of single action potentials in an intact brain is one of the longest-standing challenges in neuroscience. We have recently shown that a number of microbial rhodopsins exhibit intrinsic fluorescence that is sensitive to transmembrane potential. One class of indicator, derived from Archaerhodopsin-3 (Arch), responds to voltage transients with a speed and sensitivity that enable near-perfect identification of single action potentials in cultured neurons [Nat Methods. (2011). 9:90-5]. We have extended the use of these indicators to an in vivo context through the application of advanced imaging techniques to the larval zebrafish. Using planar-illumination, spinning-disk confocal, and epifluorescence imaging modalities, we have successfully recorded electrical activity in a variety of fish structures, including the brain and heart, in a completely noninvasive manner. Transgenic lines expressing Arch variants in defined cells enable comprehensive measurements to be made from specific target populations. In parallel, we have also extended the capabilities of our indicators by improving their multiphoton excitability and overall brightness. Microbial rhodopsin-based voltage indicators now enable optical interrogation of complex neural circuits, and electrophysiology in systems for which electrode-based techniques are challenging.

  8. Spectral methods for study of the G-protein-coupled receptor rhodopsin. II. Magnetic resonance methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Struts, A. V.; Barmasov, A. V.; Brown, M. F.

    2016-02-01

    This article continues our review of spectroscopic studies of G-protein-coupled receptors. Magnetic resonance methods including electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) provide specific structural and dynamical data for the protein in conjunction with optical methods (vibrational, electronic spectroscopy) as discussed in the accompanying article. An additional advantage is the opportunity to explore the receptor proteins in the natural membrane lipid environment. Solid-state 2H and 13C NMR methods yield information about both the local structure and dynamics of the cofactor bound to the protein and its light-induced changes. Complementary site-directed spin-labeling studies monitor the structural alterations over larger distances and correspondingly longer time scales. A multiscale reaction mechanism describes how local changes of the retinal cofactor unlock the receptor to initiate large-scale conformational changes of rhodopsin. Activation of the G-protein-coupled receptor involves an ensemble of conformational substates within the rhodopsin manifold that characterize the dynamically active receptor.

  9. Protective role of grape seed extract against the effect of electromagnetic radiation on retinal rhodopsin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Naglaa Mohamed Samir Mohamed El hansi

    2013-01-01

    In recent time, people exposure to blue light has increased. Much of the world of commercial display and industry is lit with cool white fluorescent tubes which emit a strong spike of light in the blue and ultraviolet ranges. Indeed many homes and offices are lit with cool white fluorescent tubes. No doubts, more people are spending more time in front of Video Display Terminals which produce blue light. This study aimed to investigate the effect of blue light and the combined effect of blue light and gamma radiation on retinal rhodopsin. Also, the possible protective role of grape seed extract (GSE) to retinal rhodopsin was tested. New zealand albino rabbits were used in this study. The rabbits were classified into five groups I, II, III, IV and V according to the following: Group I: used as control group. Group II: subdivided into four subgroups subgroups were exposed to blue light of intensity 3.9 lux and decapitated after 48 hours, one week, two weeks and 3 weeks respectively. Group III: subdivided into four subgroups. All rabbits were supplemented with 10 mg/Kg body weight Grape seed extract (GSE) two weeks before exposure to 3.9 lux blue light. GSE supplementation was continued till decapitation. Rabbits were decapitated after 48 hours, one week, two weeks and 3 weeks of exposure to blue light respectively. Group IV: subdivided into two subgroups. The two subgroups were exposed to blue light of 3.9 lux for one week and two weeks, then irradiated with 5 Gy gamma rays and decapitated. Group V: subdivided into two subgroups. The rabbits were supplemented with 10 mg/Kg body weight Grape seed extract (GSE) two weeks before exposure to 3.9 lux blue light for one week and two weeks respectively. After these periods, the rabbits were irradiated with 5 Gy gamma rays then decapitated. GSE supplementation was continued till decapitation. At the end of each period, the electroretinogram (ERG) was recorded. After the decapitation, the rhodopsin was extracted and the

  10. Detection of rhodopsin dimerization in situ by PIE-FCCS, a time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Adam W

    2015-01-01

    Rhodopsin self-associates in the plasma membrane. At low concentrations, the interactions are consistent with a monomer-dimer equilibrium (Comar et al., J Am Chem Soc 136(23):8342-8349, 2014). At high concentrations in native tissue, higher-order clusters have been observed (Fotiadis et al., Nature 421:127-128, 2003). The physiological role of rhodopsin dimerization is still being investigated, but it is clear that a quantitative assessment is essential to determining the function of rhodopsin clusters in vision. To quantify rhodopsin interactions, I will outline the theory and methodology of a specialized time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy for measuring membrane protein-protein interactions called pulsed-interleaved excitation fluorescence cross-correlation spectroscopy (PIE-FCCS). The strength of this technique is its ability to quantify rhodopsin interactions in situ (i.e., a live cell plasma membrane). There are two reasons for restricting the scope to live cell membranes. First, the compositional heterogeneity of the plasma membrane creates a complex milieu with thousands of lipid, protein, and carbohydrate species. This makes it difficult to infer quaternary interactions from detergent solubilized samples or construct a model phospholipid bilayer that recapitulates all of the interactions present in native membranes. Second, organizational structure and dynamics is a key feature of the plasma membrane, and fixation techniques like formaldehyde cross-linking and vitrification will modulate the interactions. PIE-FCCS is based on two-color fluorescence imaging with time-correlated single-photon counting (TCSPC) (Becker et al., Rev Sci Instrum 70:1835-1841, 1999). By time-tagging every detected photon, the data can be analyzed as a fluorescence intensity distribution, fluorescence lifetime histogram, or fluorescence (cross-)correlation spectra (FCS/FCCS) (Becker, Advanced time-correlated single-photon counting techniques, Springer, Berlin, 2005). These

  11. Thermal decay of rhodopsin: role of hydrogen bonds in thermal isomerization of 11-cis retinal in the binding site and hydrolysis of protonated Schiff base.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Jian; Liu, Monica Yun; Nguyen, Jennifer B; Bhagat, Aditi; Mooney, Victoria; Yan, Elsa C Y

    2009-07-01

    Although thermal stability of the G protein-coupled receptor rhodopsin is directly related to its extremely low dark noise level and has recently generated considerable interest, the chemistry behind the thermal decay process of rhodopsin has remained unclear. Using UV-vis spectroscopy and HPLC analysis, we have demonstrated that the thermal decay of rhodopsin involves both hydrolysis of the protonated Schiff base and thermal isomerization of 11-cis to all-trans retinal. Examining the unfolding of rhodopsin by circular dichroism spectroscopy and measuring the rate of thermal isomerization of 11-cis retinal in solution, we conclude that the observed thermal isomerization of 11-cis to all-trans retinal happens when 11-cis retinal is in the binding pocket of rhodopsin. Furthermore, we demonstrate that solvent deuterium isotope effects are involved in the thermal decay process by decreasing the rates of thermal isomerization and hydrolysis, suggesting that the rate-determining step of these processes involves breaking hydrogen bonds. These results provide insight into understanding the critical role of an extensive hydrogen-bonding network on stabilizing the inactive state of rhodopsin and contribute to our current understanding of the low dark noise level of rhodopsin, which enables this specialized protein to function as an extremely sensitive biological light detector. Because similar hydrogen-bonding networks have also been suggested by structural analysis of two other GPCRs, beta1 and beta2 adrenergic receptors, our results could reveal a general role of hydrogen bonds in facilitating GPCR function.

  12. Molecular Evolution and Expression Divergence of HMT Gene Family in Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Man Zhao

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Homocysteine methyltransferase (HMT converts homocysteine to methionine using S-methylmethionine (SMM or S-adenosylmethionine (SAM as methyl donors in organisms, playing an important role in supplying methionine for the growth and the development of plants. To better understand the functions of the HMT genes in plants, we conducted a wide evolution and expression analysis of these genes. Reconstruction of the phylogenetic relationship showed that the HMT gene family was divided into Class 1 and Class 2. In Class 1, HMTs were only found in seed plants, while Class 2 presented in all land plants, which hinted that the HMT genes might have diverged in seed plants. The analysis of gene structures and selection pressures showed that they were relatively conserved during evolution. However, type I functional divergence had been detected in the HMTs. Furthermore, the expression profiles of HMTs showed their distinct expression patterns in different tissues, in which some HMTs were widely expressed in various organs, whereas the others were highly expressed in some specific organs, such as seeds or leaves. Therefore, according to our results in the evolution, functional divergence, and expression, the HMT genes might have diverged during evolution. Further analysis in the expression patterns of AthHMTs with their methyl donors suggested that the diverged HMTs might be related to supply methionine for the development of plant seeds.

  13. "DNA Re-EvolutioN": A Game for Learning Molecular Genetics and Evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miralles, Laura; Moran, Paloma; Dopico, Eduardo; Garcia-Vazquez, Eva

    2013-01-01

    Evolution is a main concept in biology, but not many students understand how it works. In this article we introduce the game "DNA Re-EvolutioN" as an active learning tool that uses genetic concepts (DNA structure, transcription and translation, mutations, natural selection, etc.) as playing rules. Students will learn about molecular…

  14. TREATMENT OF NONADIABATIC TRANSITIONS BY DENSITY-MATRIX EVOLUTION AND MOLECULAR-DYNAMICS SIMULATIONS

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    MAVRI, J; BERENDSEN, HJC

    1994-01-01

    A density matrix evolution (DME) method (H.J.C. Berendsen and J. Mavri, J. Phys. Chem., 97 (1993) 13469) to simulate the dynamics of quantum systems embedded in a classical environment is presented. The DME method allows treatment of nonadiabatic transitions. As numerical examples the collinear

  15. Consensus molecular subtypes and the evolution of precision medicine in colorectal cancer

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dienstmann, Rodrigo; Vermeulen, Louis; Guinney, Justin; Kopetz, Scott; Tejpar, Sabine; Tabernero, Josep

    2017-01-01

    Critical driver genomic events in colorectal cancer have been shown to affect the response to targeted agents that were initially developed under the 'one gene, one drug' paradigm of precision medicine. Our current knowledge of the complexity of the cancer genome, clonal evolution patterns under

  16. Molecular and morphological systematics of the Ellisellidae (Coelenterata: Octocorallia): Parallel evolution in a globally distributed family of octocorals

    KAUST Repository

    Bilewitch, Jaret P.

    2014-04-01

    The octocorals of the Ellisellidae constitute a diverse and widely distributed family with subdivisions into genera based on colonial growth forms. Branching patterns are repeated in several genera and congeners often display region-specific variations in a given growth form. We examined the systematic patterns of ellisellid genera and the evolution of branching form diversity using molecular phylogenetic and ancestral morphological reconstructions. Six of eight included genera were found to be polyphyletic due to biogeographical incompatibility with current taxonomic assignments and the creation of at least six new genera plus several reassignments among existing genera is necessary. Phylogenetic patterns of diversification of colony branching morphology displayed a similar transformation order in each of the two primary ellisellid clades, with a sea fan form estimated as the most-probable common ancestor with likely origins in the Indo-Pacific region. The observed parallelism in evolution indicates the existence of a constraint on the genetic elements determining ellisellid colonial morphology. However, the lack of correspondence between levels of genetic divergence and morphological diversity among genera suggests that future octocoral studies should focus on the role of changes in gene regulation in the evolution of branching patterns. © 2014 Elsevier Inc.

  17. STAR FORMATION IN DISK GALAXIES. I. FORMATION AND EVOLUTION OF GIANT MOLECULAR CLOUDS VIA GRAVITATIONAL INSTABILITY AND CLOUD COLLISIONS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tasker, Elizabeth J.; Tan, Jonathan C.

    2009-01-01

    We investigate the formation and evolution of giant molecular clouds (GMCs) in a Milky-Way-like disk galaxy with a flat rotation curve. We perform a series of three-dimensional adaptive mesh refinement numerical simulations that follow both the global evolution on scales of ∼20 kpc and resolve down to scales ∼ H ≥ 100 cm -3 and track the evolution of individual clouds as they orbit through the galaxy from their birth to their eventual destruction via merger or via destructive collision with another cloud. After ∼140 Myr a large fraction of the gas in the disk has fragmented into clouds with masses ∼10 6 M sun and a mass spectrum similar to that of Galactic GMCs. The disk settles into a quasi-steady-state in which gravitational scattering of clouds keeps the disk near the threshold of global gravitational instability. The cloud collision time is found to be a small fraction, ∼1/5, of the orbital time, and this is an efficient mechanism to inject turbulence into the clouds. This helps to keep clouds only moderately gravitationally bound, with virial parameters of order unity. Many other observed GMC properties, such as mass surface density, angular momentum, velocity dispersion, and vertical distribution, can be accounted for in this simple model with no stellar feedback.

  18. Molecular and morphological systematics of the Ellisellidae (Coelenterata: Octocorallia): Parallel evolution in a globally distributed family of octocorals

    KAUST Repository

    Bilewitch, Jaret P.; Ekins, Merrick; Hooper, John; Degnan, Sandie M.

    2014-01-01

    The octocorals of the Ellisellidae constitute a diverse and widely distributed family with subdivisions into genera based on colonial growth forms. Branching patterns are repeated in several genera and congeners often display region-specific variations in a given growth form. We examined the systematic patterns of ellisellid genera and the evolution of branching form diversity using molecular phylogenetic and ancestral morphological reconstructions. Six of eight included genera were found to be polyphyletic due to biogeographical incompatibility with current taxonomic assignments and the creation of at least six new genera plus several reassignments among existing genera is necessary. Phylogenetic patterns of diversification of colony branching morphology displayed a similar transformation order in each of the two primary ellisellid clades, with a sea fan form estimated as the most-probable common ancestor with likely origins in the Indo-Pacific region. The observed parallelism in evolution indicates the existence of a constraint on the genetic elements determining ellisellid colonial morphology. However, the lack of correspondence between levels of genetic divergence and morphological diversity among genera suggests that future octocoral studies should focus on the role of changes in gene regulation in the evolution of branching patterns. © 2014 Elsevier Inc.

  19. Explaining the luminosity spread in young clusters: proto and pre-main sequence stellar evolution in a molecular cloud environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jensen, Sigurd S.; Haugbølle, Troels

    2018-02-01

    Hertzsprung-Russell diagrams of star-forming regions show a large luminosity spread. This is incompatible with well-defined isochrones based on classic non-accreting protostellar evolution models. Protostars do not evolve in isolation of their environment, but grow through accretion of gas. In addition, while an age can be defined for a star-forming region, the ages of individual stars in the region will vary. We show how the combined effect of a protostellar age spread, a consequence of sustained star formation in the molecular cloud, and time-varying protostellar accretion for individual protostars can explain the observed luminosity spread. We use a global magnetohydrodynamic simulation including a sub-scale sink particle model of a star-forming region to follow the accretion process of each star. The accretion profiles are used to compute stellar evolution models for each star, incorporating a model of how the accretion energy is distributed to the disc, radiated away at the accretion shock, or incorporated into the outer layers of the protostar. Using a modelled cluster age of 5 Myr, we naturally reproduce the luminosity spread and find good agreement with observations of the Collinder 69 cluster, and the Orion Nebular Cluster. It is shown how stars in binary and multiple systems can be externally forced creating recurrent episodic accretion events. We find that in a realistic global molecular cloud model massive stars build up mass over relatively long time-scales. This leads to an important conceptual change compared to the classic picture of non-accreting stellar evolution segmented into low-mass Hayashi tracks and high-mass Henyey tracks.

  20. Influence of GDP on interaction of transducin with cyclic nucleotide phosphodiesterase and rhodopsin from bovine retinal rods

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rybin, V.O.

    1986-01-01

    In the presence of guanine nucleotides and rhodopsin-containing membranes from bovine retinal rod outer segments transducin stimulates light-sensitive cyclic nucleotide phosphodiesterase 5.5- to 7-fold. The activation constant (K/sub act/) for GTP and Gpp(NH)p is equal to 0.25 μM, while that for GDP and GDPβS is 14 and 110 μM, respectively. GDP free of admixtures of other nucleotides does not activate phosphodiesterase at concentrations up to 1 mM, but is bound to transducin and inhibits the Gpp(NH)p-dependent activation of phosphodiesterase. The nature of the interaction of transducin with depolarized rhodopsin also depends on the type of guanine nucleotide bound: in the presence of GDP rhodopsin-containing membranes bind 70-100% of the transducin, whereas in the presence of Gpp(NH)p only 13% of the protein is bound. The data obtained indicate that GDP and GTP convert transducin to two different functional states: the transducin-GTP complex is bound to phosphodiesterase and activates it, while the transducin-GDP complex is bound primarily to rhodopsin

  1. Fluoro derivatives of retinal illuminate the decisive role of the C(12)-H element in photoisomerization and rhodopsin activation.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bovee-Geurts, P.H.M.; Fernandez Fernandez, I.; Liu, R.S.; Mathies, R.A.; Lugtenburg, J.; Grip, W.J. de

    2009-01-01

    Rhodopsin, the visual pigment of the vertebrate rod cell, is among the best investigated members of the G-protein-coupled receptor family. Within this family a unique characteristic of visual pigments is their covalently bound chromophore, 11-cis retinal, which acts as an inverse agonist. Upon

  2. Opsin cDNA sequences of a UV and green rhodopsin of the satyrine butterfly Bicyclus anynana.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vanhoutte, K.J.A.; Eggen, B.J.L.; Janssen, J.J.M.; Stavenga, D.G.

    2002-01-01

    The cDNAs of an ultraviolet (UV) and long-wavelength (LW) (green) absorbing rhodopsin of the bush brown Bicyclus anynana were partially identified. The UV sequence, encoding 377 amino acids, is 76-79% identical to the UV sequences of the papilionids Papilio glaucus and Papilio xuthus and the moth

  3. Opsin cDNA sequences of a UV and green rhodopsin of the satyrine butterfly Bicyclus anynana

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vanhoutte, Kürt; Eggen, BJL; Janssen, JJM; Stavenga, DG

    The cDNAs of an ultraviolet (UV) and long-wavelength (LW) (green) absorbing rhodopsin of the bush brown Bicyclus anynana were partially identified. The UV sequence, encoding 377 amino acids, is 76-79% identical to the UV sequences of the papilionids Papilio glaucus and Papilio xuthus and the moth

  4. Variation in incorporation of tritiated amino acids into rhodopsin and opsin during the 12 hour light-dark cycle

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Matsumoto, B.

    1981-01-01

    This is a study of the variation in incorporation of labeled amino acids into opsin and rhodopsin during the 12 hour light-dark cycle. Groups of 12 adult, light-entrained R. pipiens were injected with tritiated amino acids at selected times of the day and night. Twenty four hours later, the frogs were sacrificed and their rhodopsin purified by column chromatography. It was found that the peak incorporation of amino acids into rhodopsin occurred shortly after light onset and declined to lower levels at later hours. Light microscopic autoradiography revealed the presence of radioactive disc membranes in the rod outer segments. However there was no correlation between outer segment grain density and rhodopsin specific activity. Succeeding experiments showed that light onset, rather than the time of day, played an important role in stimulating isotope incorporation. Electro-immunoprecipitation experiments revealed a changing specific activity for inner segment opsin during the light-dark cycle. Peak levels of amino acid incorporation occurred shortly after light onset and then declined to lower levels. For all time points, opsin was found to be radioactive, indicating opsin biosynthesis occurred continually throughout the diurnal cycle

  5. highroad Is a Carboxypetidase Induced by Retinoids to Clear Mutant Rhodopsin-1 in Drosophila Retinitis Pigmentosa Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huai-Wei Huang

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Rhodopsins require retinoid chromophores for their function. In vertebrates, retinoids also serve as signaling molecules, but whether these molecules similarly regulate gene expression in Drosophila remains unclear. Here, we report the identification of a retinoid-inducible gene in Drosophila, highroad, which is required for photoreceptors to clear folding-defective mutant Rhodopsin-1 proteins. Specifically, knockdown or genetic deletion of highroad blocks the degradation of folding-defective Rhodopsin-1 mutant, ninaEG69D. Moreover, loss of highroad accelerates the age-related retinal degeneration phenotype of ninaEG69D mutants. Elevated highroad transcript levels are detected in ninaEG69D flies, and interestingly, deprivation of retinoids in the fly diet blocks this effect. Consistently, mutations in the retinoid transporter, santa maria, impairs the induction of highroad in ninaEG69D flies. In cultured S2 cells, highroad expression is induced by retinoic acid treatment. These results indicate that cellular quality-control mechanisms against misfolded Rhodopsin-1 involve regulation of gene expression by retinoids.

  6. Protein Based Molecular Markers Provide Reliable Means to Understand Prokaryotic Phylogeny and Support Darwinian Mode of Evolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vaibhav eBhandari

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available The analyses of genome sequences have led to the proposal that lateral gene transfers (LGTs among prokaryotes are so widespread that they disguise the interrelationships among these organisms. This has led to questioning whether the Darwinian model of evolution is applicable to the prokaryotic organisms. In this review, we discuss the usefulness of taxon-specific molecular markers such as conserved signature indels (CSIs and conserved signature proteins (CSPs for understanding the evolutionary relationships among prokaryotes and to assess the influence of LGTs on prokaryotic evolution. The analyses of genomic sequences have identified large numbers of CSIs and CSPs that are unique properties of different groups of prokaryotes ranging from phylum to genus levels. The species distribution patterns of these molecular signatures strongly support a tree-like vertical inheritance of the genes containing these molecular signatures that is consistent with phylogenetic trees. Recent detailed studies in this regard on Thermotogae and Archaea, which are reviewed here, have identified large numbers of CSIs and CSPs that are specific for the species from these two taxa and a number of their major clades. The genetic changes responsible for these CSIs (and CSPs initially likely occurred in the common ancestors of these taxa and then vertically transferred to various descendants. Although some CSIs and CSPs in unrelated groups of prokaryotes were identified, their small numbers and random occurrence has no apparent influence on the consistent tree-like branching pattern emerging from other markers. These results provide evidence that although LGT is an important evolutionary force, it does not mask the tree-like branching pattern of prokaryotes or understanding of their evolutionary relationships. The identified CSIs and CSPs also provide novel and highly specific means for identification of different groups of microbes and for taxonomical and biochemical

  7. Protein based molecular markers provide reliable means to understand prokaryotic phylogeny and support Darwinian mode of evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhandari, Vaibhav; Naushad, Hafiz S; Gupta, Radhey S

    2012-01-01

    The analyses of genome sequences have led to the proposal that lateral gene transfers (LGTs) among prokaryotes are so widespread that they disguise the interrelationships among these organisms. This has led to questioning of whether the Darwinian model of evolution is applicable to prokaryotic organisms. In this review, we discuss the usefulness of taxon-specific molecular markers such as conserved signature indels (CSIs) and conserved signature proteins (CSPs) for understanding the evolutionary relationships among prokaryotes and to assess the influence of LGTs on prokaryotic evolution. The analyses of genomic sequences have identified large numbers of CSIs and CSPs that are unique properties of different groups of prokaryotes ranging from phylum to genus levels. The species distribution patterns of these molecular signatures strongly support a tree-like vertical inheritance of the genes containing these molecular signatures that is consistent with phylogenetic trees. Recent detailed studies in this regard on the Thermotogae and Archaea, which are reviewed here, have identified large numbers of CSIs and CSPs that are specific for the species from these two taxa and a number of their major clades. The genetic changes responsible for these CSIs (and CSPs) initially likely occurred in the common ancestors of these taxa and then vertically transferred to various descendants. Although some CSIs and CSPs in unrelated groups of prokaryotes were identified, their small numbers and random occurrence has no apparent influence on the consistent tree-like branching pattern emerging from other markers. These results provide evidence that although LGT is an important evolutionary force, it does not mask the tree-like branching pattern of prokaryotes or understanding of their evolutionary relationships. The identified CSIs and CSPs also provide novel and highly specific means for identification of different groups of microbes and for taxonomical and biochemical studies.

  8. The Environmental and Molecular Sciences Laboratory project -- Continuous evolution in leadership

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Knutson, D.E.; McClusky, J.K.

    1994-10-01

    The Environmental and Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL) construction project at Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL) in Richland, Washington, is a $230M Major Systems Acquisition for the US Department of Energy (DOE). The completed laboratory will be a national user facility that provides unparalleled capabilities for scientists involved in environmental molecular science research. This project, approved for construction by the Secretary of Energy in October 1993, is underway. The United States is embarking on an environmental cleanup effort that dwarfs previous scientific enterprise. Using current best available technology, the projected costs of cleaning up the tens of thousands of toxic waste sites, including DOE sites, is estimated to exceed one trillion dollars. The present state of scientific knowledge regarding the effects of exogenous chemicals on human biology is very limited. Long term environmental research at the molecular level is needed to resolve the concerns, and form the building blocks for a structure of cost effective process improvement and regulatory reform

  9. The Environmental and Molecular Sciences Laboratory project -- Continuous evolution in leadership

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Knutson, D.E.; McClusky, J.K.

    1994-10-01

    The Environmental and Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL) construction project at Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL) in Richland, Washington, is a $230M Major Systems Acquisition for the US Department of Energy (DOE). The completed laboratory will be a national user facility that provides unparalleled capabilities for scientists involved in environmental molecular science research. This project, approved for construction by the Secretary of Energy in October 1993, is underway. The United States is embarking on an environmental cleanup effort that dwarfs previous scientific enterprise. Using current best available technology, the projected costs of cleaning up the tens of thousands of toxic waste sites, including DOE sites, is estimated to exceed one trillion dollars. The present state of scientific knowledge regarding the effects of exogenous chemicals on human biology is very limited. Long term environmental research at the molecular level is needed to resolve the concerns, and form the building blocks for a structure of cost effective process improvement and regulatory reform.

  10. Molecular evolution of the odorant and gustatory receptor genes in lepidopteran insects: implications for their adaptation and speciation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engsontia, Patamarerk; Sangket, Unitsa; Chotigeat, Wilaiwan; Satasook, Chutamas

    2014-08-01

    Lepidoptera (comprised of butterflies and moths) is one of the largest groups of insects, including more than 160,000 described species. Chemoreception plays important roles in the adaptation of these species to a wide range of niches, e.g., plant hosts, egg-laying sites, and mates. This study investigated the molecular evolution of the lepidopteran odorant (Or) and gustatory receptor (Gr) genes using recently identified genes from Bombyx mori, Danaus plexippus, Heliconius melpomene, Plutella xylostella, Heliothis virescens, Manduca sexta, Cydia pomonella, and Spodoptera littoralis. A limited number of cases of large lineage-specific gene expansion are observed (except in the P. xylostella lineage), possibly due to selection against tandem gene duplication. There has been strong purifying selection during the evolution of both lepidopteran odorant and gustatory genes, as shown by the low ω values estimated through CodeML analysis, ranging from 0.0093 to 0.3926. However, purifying selection has been relaxed on some amino acid sites in these receptors, leading to sequence divergence, which is a precursor of positive selection on these sequences. Signatures of positive selection were detected only in a few loci from the lineage-specific analysis. Estimation of gene gains and losses suggests that the common ancestor of the Lepidoptera had fewer Or genes compared to extant species and an even more reduced number of Gr genes, particularly within the bitter receptor clade. Multiple gene gains and a few gene losses occurred during the evolution of Lepidoptera. Gene family expansion may be associated with the adaptation of lepidopteran species to plant hosts, especially after angiosperm radiation. Phylogenetic analysis of the moth sex pheromone receptor genes suggested that chromosomal translocations have occurred several times. New sex pheromone receptors have arisen through tandem gene duplication. Positive selection was detected at some amino acid sites predicted to be

  11. Evolution and molecular characterization of tick-borne Anaplasmataceae and implications for pathogen diagnostics and control.

    OpenAIRE

    Cabezas Cruz, Alejandro

    2016-01-01

    Esta tesis se concentra en la caracterización molecular de patógenos transmitidos por garrapatas, los cuales han cobrado una gran importancia en los últimos años debido a su impacto en la economía agropecuaria, y en la salub pública de países tanto desarrollados como en vía de desarrollo (Perez y col., 2006; Rikihisa, 2010; Aubry y Geale, 2011). Particularmente la tesis usa una combinación de herramientas moleculares, bioinformaticas y filogenéticas para estudiar la variación genética de dos...

  12. Spatiotemporal evolution of Reaumuria (Tamaricaceae) in Central Asia: insights from molecular biogeography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mingli Zhang; Xiaoli Hao; Stewart C. Sanderson; Byalt V. Vyacheslav; Alexander P. Sukhorukov; Xia Zhang

    2014-01-01

    Reaumuria is an arid adapted genus with a distribution center in Central Asia; its evolution and dispersal is investigated in this paper. Eighteen species of Reaumuria and nine species of two other genera in the Tamaricaceae, Tamarix and Myricaria, were sampled, and four markers ITS, rps16, psbB-psbH, and trnL-trnF were sequenced. The reconstructed phylogenetic tree is...

  13. Plant cell walls throughout evolution: towards a molecular understanding of their design principles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarkar, Purbasha; Bosneaga, Elena; Auer, Manfred

    2009-01-01

    Throughout their life, plants typically remain in one location utilizing sunlight for the synthesis of carbohydrates, which serve as their sole source of energy as well as building blocks of a protective extracellular matrix, called the cell wall. During the course of evolution, plants have repeatedly adapted to their respective niche, which is reflected in the changes of their body plan and the specific design of cell walls. Cell walls not only changed throughout evolution but also are constantly remodelled and reconstructed during the development of an individual plant, and in response to environmental stress or pathogen attacks. Carbohydrate-rich cell walls display complex designs, which together with the presence of phenolic polymers constitutes a barrier for microbes, fungi, and animals. Throughout evolution microbes have co-evolved strategies for efficient breakdown of cell walls. Our current understanding of cell walls and their evolutionary changes are limited as our knowledge is mainly derived from biochemical and genetic studies, complemented by a few targeted yet very informative imaging studies. Comprehensive plant cell wall models will aid in the re-design of plant cell walls for the purpose of commercially viable lignocellulosic biofuel production as well as for the timber, textile, and paper industries. Such knowledge will also be of great interest in the context of agriculture and to plant biologists in general. It is expected that detailed plant cell wall models will require integrated correlative multimodal, multiscale imaging and modelling approaches, which are currently underway.

  14. Molecular evolution of peptide ligands with custom-tailored characteristics for targeting of glycostructures.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Niels Röckendorf

    Full Text Available As an advanced approach to identify suitable targeting molecules required for various diagnostic and therapeutic interventions, we developed a procedure to devise peptides with customizable features by an iterative computer-assisted optimization strategy. An evolutionary algorithm was utilized to breed peptides in silico and the "fitness" of peptides was determined in an appropriate laboratory in vitro assay. The influence of different evolutional parameters and mechanisms such as mutation rate, crossover probability, gaussian variation and fitness value scaling on the course of this artificial evolutional process was investigated. As a proof of concept peptidic ligands for a model target molecule, the cell surface glycolipid ganglioside G(M1, were identified. Consensus sequences describing local fitness optima were reached from diverse sets of L- and proteolytically stable D lead peptides. Ten rounds of evolutional optimization encompassing a total of just 4400 peptides lead to an increase in affinity of the peptides towards fluorescently labeled ganglioside G(M1 by a factor of 100 for L- and 400 for D-peptides.

  15. Plant cell walls throughout evolution: towards a molecular understanding of their design principles

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sarkar, Purbasha; Bosneaga, Elena; Auer, Manfred

    2009-02-16

    Throughout their life, plants typically remain in one location utilizing sunlight for the synthesis of carbohydrates, which serve as their sole source of energy as well as building blocks of a protective extracellular matrix, called the cell wall. During the course of evolution, plants have repeatedly adapted to their respective niche,which is reflected in the changes of their body plan and the specific design of cell walls. Cell walls not only changed throughout evolution but also are constantly remodelled and reconstructed during the development of an individual plant, and in response to environmental stress or pathogen attacks. Carbohydrate-rich cell walls display complex designs, which together with the presence of phenolic polymers constitutes a barrier for microbes, fungi, and animals. Throughout evolution microbes have co-evolved strategies for efficient breakdown of cell walls. Our current understanding of cell walls and their evolutionary changes are limited as our knowledge is mainly derived from biochemical and genetic studies, complemented by a few targeted yet very informative imaging studies. Comprehensive plant cell wall models will aid in the re-design of plant cell walls for the purpose of commercially viable lignocellulosic biofuel production as well as for the timber, textile, and paper industries. Such knowledge will also be of great interest in the context of agriculture and to plant biologists in general. It is expected that detailed plant cell wall models will require integrated correlative multimodal, multiscale imaging and modelling approaches, which are currently underway.

  16. The molecular evolution of the p120-catenin subfamily and its functional associations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert H Carnahan

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available p120-catenin (p120 is the prototypical member of a subclass of armadillo-related proteins that includes δ-catenin/NPRAP, ARVCF, p0071, and the more distantly related plakophilins 1-3. In vertebrates, p120 is essential in regulating surface expression and stability of all classical cadherins, and directly interacts with Kaiso, a BTB/ZF family transcription factor.To clarify functional relationships between these proteins and how they relate to the classical cadherins, we have examined the proteomes of 14 diverse vertebrate and metazoan species. The data reveal a single ancient δ-catenin-like p120 family member present in the earliest metazoans and conserved throughout metazoan evolution. This single p120 family protein is present in all protostomes, and in certain early-branching chordate lineages. Phylogenetic analyses suggest that gene duplication and functional diversification into "p120-like" and "δ-catenin-like" proteins occurred in the urochordate-vertebrate ancestor. Additional gene duplications during early vertebrate evolution gave rise to the seven vertebrate p120 family members. Kaiso family members (i.e., Kaiso, ZBTB38 and ZBTB4 are found only in vertebrates, their origin following that of the p120-like gene lineage and coinciding with the evolution of vertebrate-specific mechanisms of epigenetic gene regulation by CpG island methylation.The p120 protein family evolved from a common δ-catenin-like ancestor present in all metazoans. Through several rounds of gene duplication and diversification, however, p120 evolved in vertebrates into an essential, ubiquitously expressed protein, whereas loss of the more selectively expressed δ-catenin, p0071 and ARVCF are tolerated in most species. Together with phylogenetic studies of the vertebrate cadherins, our data suggest that the p120-like and δ-catenin-like genes co-evolved separately with non-neural (E- and P-cadherin and neural (N- and R-cadherin cadherin lineages, respectively. The

  17. The age and evolution of sociality in Stegodyphus spiders: a molecular phylogenetic perspective

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johannesen, Jes; Lubin, Yael; Smith, Deborah R.

    2007-01-01

    suggested to be unstable in evolutionary time, and hence sociality a rare phenomenon in spiders. Based on a partial molecular phylogeny of the genus Stegodyphus, we address the hypothesis that social spiders in this genus are evolutionary transient. We estimate the age of the three social species, test...

  18. Nucleotide sequences of immunoglobulin eta genes of chimpanzee and orangutan: DNA molecular clock and hominoid evolution

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sakoyama, Y.; Hong, K.J.; Byun, S.M.; Hisajima, H.; Ueda, S.; Yaoita, Y.; Hayashida, H.; Miyata, T.; Honjo, T.

    1987-02-01

    To determine the phylogenetic relationships among hominoids and the dates of their divergence, the complete nucleotide sequences of the constant region of the immunoglobulin eta-chain (C/sub eta1/) genes from chimpanzee and orangutan have been determined. These sequences were compared with the human eta-chain constant-region sequence. A molecular clock (silent molecular clock), measured by the degree of sequence divergence at the synonymous (silent) positions of protein-encoding regions, was introduced for the present study. From the comparison of nucleotide sequences of ..cap alpha../sub 1/-antitrypsin and ..beta..- and delta-globulin genes between humans and Old World monkeys, the silent molecular clock was calibrated: the mean evolutionary rate of silent substitution was determined to be 1.56 x 10/sup -9/ substitutions per site per year. Using the silent molecular clock, the mean divergence dates of chimpanzee and orangutan from the human lineage were estimated as 6.4 +/- 2.6 million years and 17.3 +/- 4.5 million years, respectively. It was also shown that the evolutionary rate of primate genes is considerably slower than those of other mammalian genes.

  19. Molecular evolution of lepidopteran silk proteins: Insights from the ghost moth, Hepialus californicus

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Collin, M. A.; Mita, K.; Sehnal, František; Hayashi, C. Y.

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 70, č. 5 (2010), s. 519-529 ISSN 0022-2844 Grant - others:NSF(BE) DEB-0515868 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : Lepidoptera * Trichoptera * silk Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 2.311, year: 2010

  20. Evolution of the atomic and molecular gas content of galaxies in dark matter haloes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Popping, Gergö; Behroozi, Peter S.; Peeples, Molly S.

    We present a semi-empirical model to infer the atomic and molecular hydrogen content of galaxies as a function of halo mass and time. Our model combines the star formation rate (SFR)-halo mass-redshift relation (constrained by galaxy abundances) with inverted SFR-surface density relations to infer

  1. Evaluating fossil calibrations for dating phylogenies in light of rates of molecular evolution: a comparison of three approaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lukoschek, Vimoksalehi; Scott Keogh, J; Avise, John C

    2012-01-01

    Evolutionary and biogeographic studies increasingly rely on calibrated molecular clocks to date key events. Although there has been significant recent progress in development of the techniques used for molecular dating, many issues remain. In particular, controversies abound over the appropriate use and placement of fossils for calibrating molecular clocks. Several methods have been proposed for evaluating candidate fossils; however, few studies have compared the results obtained by different approaches. Moreover, no previous study has incorporated the effects of nucleotide saturation from different data types in the evaluation of candidate fossils. In order to address these issues, we compared three approaches for evaluating fossil calibrations: the single-fossil cross-validation method of Near, Meylan, and Shaffer (2005. Assessing concordance of fossil calibration points in molecular clock studies: an example using turtles. Am. Nat. 165:137-146), the empirical fossil coverage method of Marshall (2008. A simple method for bracketing absolute divergence times on molecular phylogenies using multiple fossil calibration points. Am. Nat. 171:726-742), and the Bayesian multicalibration method of Sanders and Lee (2007. Evaluating molecular clock calibrations using Bayesian analyses with soft and hard bounds. Biol. Lett. 3:275-279) and explicitly incorporate the effects of data type (nuclear vs. mitochondrial DNA) for identifying the most reliable or congruent fossil calibrations. We used advanced (Caenophidian) snakes as a case study; however, our results are applicable to any taxonomic group with multiple candidate fossils, provided appropriate taxon sampling and sufficient molecular sequence data are available. We found that data type strongly influenced which fossil calibrations were identified as outliers, regardless of which method was used. Despite the use of complex partitioned models of sequence evolution and multiple calibrations throughout the tree, saturation

  2. Evolution of star-bearing molecular clouds: the high-velocity HCO+ flow in NGC 2071

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wootten, A.; Loren, R.B.; Sandqvist, A.; Friberg, P.; Hjalmarson, Aa.

    1984-01-01

    The J = 1-0 and J = 302 lines of HCO + and H 13 CO + have been observed in the molecular cloud NGC 2071, where they map the dense portions of a bidirectional molecular flow. The high resolution (42'') of our observations has enabled us to determine the distribution of mass, momentum , and energy in the flow as a function of projected distance from the cluster. Both momentum and energy diminish with distance from the central cluster of infrared sources. The highest velocities at a given intensity in this dense flow occur in a limited region coincident with an infrared cluster and the densest part of the molecular cloud. Higher resolution (33'') CO and 13 CO observations reveal that the extreme velocities in the flow occur in regions displaced on opposite sides of the cluster, suggesting that the flow only becomes visible in molecular line emission at distances approx.0.1 pc from its supposed source. Lower velocity material containing most of the mass of the flow is found over larger regions, as expected if the flow has decelerated as it has evolved. Assuming conservation of momentum, the historical rate of momentum injection is found to have been roughly constant over a period of 10 4 years, suggesting a constancy of the average luminosity of the central cluster over that time. The J = 3--2 HCO + profile does not show the absorption which is a prominent feature of the J = 1--0 profile, and the J = 3--2 line appears to be a useful probe of conditions specific to the dense cores of clouds. The high velocity HCO + emission correlates very well with spatial and velocity events of molecular hydrogen emission. The abundance of HCO + [X(HCO + )approx.10 -8 ], and by inference the electron density, is similar in material at all velocities

  3. Targeted Sequencing of Venom Genes from Cone Snail Genomes Improves Understanding of Conotoxin Molecular Evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phuong, Mark A; Mahardika, Gusti N

    2018-05-01

    To expand our capacity to discover venom sequences from the genomes of venomous organisms, we applied targeted sequencing techniques to selectively recover venom gene superfamilies and nontoxin loci from the genomes of 32 cone snail species (family, Conidae), a diverse group of marine gastropods that capture their prey using a cocktail of neurotoxic peptides (conotoxins). We were able to successfully recover conotoxin gene superfamilies across all species with high confidence (> 100× coverage) and used these data to provide new insights into conotoxin evolution. First, we found that conotoxin gene superfamilies are composed of one to six exons and are typically short in length (mean = ∼85 bp). Second, we expanded our understanding of the following genetic features of conotoxin evolution: 1) positive selection, where exons coding the mature toxin region were often three times more divergent than their adjacent noncoding regions, 2) expression regulation, with comparisons to transcriptome data showing that cone snails only express a fraction of the genes available in their genome (24-63%), and 3) extensive gene turnover, where Conidae species varied from 120 to 859 conotoxin gene copies. Finally, using comparative phylogenetic methods, we found that while diet specificity did not predict patterns of conotoxin evolution, dietary breadth was positively correlated with total conotoxin gene diversity. Overall, the targeted sequencing technique demonstrated here has the potential to radically increase the pace at which venom gene families are sequenced and studied, reshaping our ability to understand the impact of genetic changes on ecologically relevant phenotypes and subsequent diversification.

  4. Elucidating the Molecular Factors Implicated in the Persistence and Evolution of Transferable Antibiotic Resistance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Porse, Andreas

    Being the most diverse and abundant domain of life, bacteria exemplify the remarkable ability of evolution to fit organisms into almost any imaginable niche on the planet. Although the capacity of bacteria to diversify and adapt is fundamental to natural ecosystems and modern biotechnology...... natural environment, we looked into the genomes of Escherichia coli longitudinally sampled from the infant gut over the first year of life. Sequence analysis revealed a high degree of genomic plasticity, with frequent gene acquisition and loss events. While the acquisition of new genetic material is often...

  5. Cognitive neuroepigenetics: the next evolution in our understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying learning and memory?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marshall, Paul; Bredy, Timothy W.

    2016-07-01

    A complete understanding of the fundamental mechanisms of learning and memory continues to elude neuroscientists. Although many important discoveries have been made, the question of how memories are encoded and maintained at the molecular level remains. So far, this issue has been framed within the context of one of the most dominant concepts in molecular biology, the central dogma, and the result has been a protein-centric view of memory. Here, we discuss the evidence supporting a role for neuroepigenetic mechanisms, which constitute dynamic and reversible, state-dependent modifications at all levels of control over cellular function, and their role in learning and memory. This neuroepigenetic view suggests that DNA, RNA and protein each influence one another to produce a holistic cellular state that contributes to the formation and maintenance of memory, and predicts a parallel and distributed system for the consolidation, storage and retrieval of the engram.

  6. Pteros 2.0: Evolution of the fast parallel molecular analysis library for C++ and python.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yesylevskyy, Semen O

    2015-07-15

    Pteros is the high-performance open-source library for molecular modeling and analysis of molecular dynamics trajectories. Starting from version 2.0 Pteros is available for C++ and Python programming languages with very similar interfaces. This makes it suitable for writing complex reusable programs in C++ and simple interactive scripts in Python alike. New version improves the facilities for asynchronous trajectory reading and parallel execution of analysis tasks by introducing analysis plugins which could be written in either C++ or Python in completely uniform way. The high level of abstraction provided by analysis plugins greatly simplifies prototyping and implementation of complex analysis algorithms. Pteros is available for free under Artistic License from http://sourceforge.net/projects/pteros/. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Evolution of species diversity in the genus Chamaecostus (Costaceae): molecular phylogenetics and morphometric approaches

    OpenAIRE

    Andre, Thiago; Specht, Chelsea; Salzman, Shayla; Palma-Silva, Clarisse [UNESP; Wendt, Tania

    2015-01-01

    While most species within the genus Chamaecostus (Costaceae) are well defined, the broad geographic range and long list of synonyms associated with Chamaecostus subsessilis led us to believe there may be some cryptic species within the complex. We thus investigate the phylogenetic relationships of species in the Chamaecostus lineage and specifically test the monophyly and diversity of the Chamaecostus subsessilis species complex from a population perspective by analyzing molecular sequence da...

  8.  Molecular evolution and positive selection of the symbiotic gene NORK in Medicago truncatula

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    De Mita, Stephane; Santoni, Sylvain; Hochu, Isabelle

    2006-01-01

     Understanding the selective constraints of partner specificity in mutually beneficial symbiosis is a significant, yet largely unexplored, prospect of evolutionary biology. These selective constraints can be explored through the study of nucleotide polymorphism at loci controlling specificity...... domain of the protein, evolved under the regime of positive selection. Further research should focus on the rate and direction of molecular coevolution between microorganisms' signaling molecules and legumes' receptors....

  9. Molecular evolution in court: analysis of a large hepatitis C virus outbreak from an evolving source.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Candelas, Fernando; Bracho, María Alma; Wróbel, Borys; Moya, Andrés

    2013-07-19

    Molecular phylogenetic analyses are used increasingly in the epidemiological investigation of outbreaks and transmission cases involving rapidly evolving RNA viruses. Here, we present the results of such an analysis that contributed to the conviction of an anesthetist as being responsible for the infection of 275 of his patients with hepatitis C virus. We obtained sequences of the NS5B and E1-E2 regions in the viral genome for 322 patients suspected to have been infected by the doctor, and for 44 local, unrelated controls. The analysis of 4,184 cloned sequences of the E1-E2 region allowed us to exclude 47 patients from the outbreak. A subset of patients had known dates of infection. We used these data to calibrate a relaxed molecular clock and to determine a rough estimate of the time of infection for each patient. A similar analysis led to an estimate for the time of infection of the source. The date turned out to be 10 years before the detection of the outbreak. The number of patients infected was small at first, but it increased substantially in the months before the detection of the outbreak. We have developed a procedure to integrate molecular phylogenetic reconstructions of rapidly evolving viral populations into a forensic setting adequate for molecular epidemiological analysis of outbreaks and transmission events. We applied this procedure to a large outbreak of hepatitis C virus caused by a single source and the results obtained played a key role in the trial that led to the conviction of the suspected source.

  10. The evolution of advanced molecular diagnostics for the detection and characterization of Mycoplasma pneumoniae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maureen H. Diaz

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Over the past several years there have been significant advancements in the methods used for detecting and characterizing Mycoplasma pneumoniae, a common cause of respiratory illness and community-acquired pneumonia worldwide. The repertoire of available molecular diagnostics has greatly expanded from nucleic acid amplification techniques (NAATs that encompass a variety of chemistries used for detection, to more sophisticated characterizing methods such as multi-locus variable-number tandem-repeat analysis and sequencing typing (MLVA and MLST, respectively, matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization–time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS, single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP typing, and numerous macrolide susceptibility profiling methods, among others. These many molecular-based approaches have been developed and employed to continually increase the level of discrimination and characterization in order to better understand the epidemiology and biology of M. pneumoniae. This review will summarize recent molecular techniques and procedures and lend perspective to how each has enhanced the current understanding of this organism and will emphasize how Next Generation Sequencing may serve as a resource for researchers to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the genomic complexities of this insidious pathogen.

  11. The Evolution of Advanced Molecular Diagnostics for the Detection and Characterization of Mycoplasma pneumoniae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diaz, Maureen H; Winchell, Jonas M

    2016-01-01

    Over the past decade there have been significant advancements in the methods used for detecting and characterizing Mycoplasma pneumoniae, a common cause of respiratory illness and community-acquired pneumonia worldwide. The repertoire of available molecular diagnostics has greatly expanded from nucleic acid amplification techniques (NAATs) that encompass a variety of chemistries used for detection, to more sophisticated characterizing methods such as multi-locus variable-number tandem-repeat analysis (MLVA), Multi-locus sequence typing (MLST), matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS), single nucleotide polymorphism typing, and numerous macrolide susceptibility profiling methods, among others. These many molecular-based approaches have been developed and employed to continually increase the level of discrimination and characterization in order to better understand the epidemiology and biology of M. pneumoniae. This review will summarize recent molecular techniques and procedures and lend perspective to how each has enhanced the current understanding of this organism and will emphasize how Next Generation Sequencing may serve as a resource for researchers to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the genomic complexities of this insidious pathogen.

  12. Gas, dust, stars, star formation, and their evolution in M 33 at giant molecular cloud scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Komugi, Shinya; Miura, Rie E.; Kuno, Nario; Tosaki, Tomoka

    2018-04-01

    We report on a multi-parameter analysis of giant molecular clouds (GMCs) in the nearby spiral galaxy M 33. A catalog of GMCs identifed in 12CO(J = 3-2) was used to compile associated 12CO(J = 1-0), dust, stellar mass, and star formation rate. Each of the 58 GMCs are categorized by their evolutionary stage. Applying the principal component analysis on these parameters, we construct two principal components, PC1 and PC2, which retain 75% of the information from the original data set. PC1 is interpreted as expressing the total interstellar matter content, and PC2 as the total activity of star formation. Young (activity compared to intermediate-age and older clouds. Comparison of average cloud properties in different evolutionary stages imply that GMCs may be heated or grow denser and more massive via aggregation of diffuse material in their first ˜ 10 Myr. The PCA also objectively identified a set of tight relations between ISM and star formation. The ratio of the two CO lines is nearly constant, but weakly modulated by massive star formation. Dust is more strongly correlated with the star formation rate than the CO lines, supporting recent findings that dust may trace molecular gas better than CO. Stellar mass contributes weakly to the star formation rate, reminiscent of an extended form of the Schmidt-Kennicutt relation with the molecular gas term substituted by dust.

  13. Evolution of the Normal State of a Strongly Interacting Fermi Gas from a Pseudogap Phase to a Molecular Bose Gas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perali, A.; Palestini, F.; Pieri, P.; Strinati, G. C.; Stewart, J. T.; Gaebler, J. P.; Drake, T. E.; Jin, D. S.

    2011-01-01

    Wave-vector resolved radio frequency spectroscopy data for an ultracold trapped Fermi gas are reported for several couplings at T c , and extensively analyzed in terms of a pairing-fluctuation theory. We map the evolution of a strongly interacting Fermi gas from the pseudogap phase into a fully gapped molecular Bose gas as a function of the interaction strength, which is marked by a rapid disappearance of a remnant Fermi surface in the single-particle dispersion. We also show that our theory of a pseudogap phase is consistent with a recent experimental observation as well as with quantum Monte Carlo data of thermodynamic quantities of a unitary Fermi gas above T c .

  14. alpha-Crystallin A sequences of Alligator mississippiensis and the lizard Tupinambis teguixin: molecular evolution and reptilian phylogeny.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Jong, W W; Zweers, A; Versteeg, M; Dessauer, H C; Goodman, M

    1985-11-01

    The amino acid sequences of the eye lens protein alpha-crystallin A from many mammalian and avian species, two frog species, and a dogfish have provided detailed information about the molecular evolution of this protein and allowed some useful inferences about phylogenetic relationships among these species. We now have isolated and sequenced the alpha-crystallins of the American alligator and the common tegu lizard. The reptilian alpha A chains appear to have evolved as slowly as those of other vertebrates, i.e., at two to three amino acid replacements per 100 residues in 100 Myr. The lack of charged replacements and the general types and distribution of replacements also are similar to those in other vertebrate alpha A chains. Maximum-parsimony analyses of the total data set of 67 vertebrate alpha A sequences support the monophyletic origin of alligator, tegu, and birds and favor the grouping of crocodilians and birds as surviving sister groups in the subclass Archosauria.

  15. X-ray laser diffraction for structure determination of the rhodopsin-arrestin complex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, X. Edward; Gao, Xiang; Barty, Anton; Kang, Yanyong; He, Yuanzheng; Liu, Wei; Ishchenko, Andrii; White, Thomas A.; Yefanov, Oleksandr; Han, Gye Won; Xu, Qingping; de Waal, Parker W.; Suino-Powell, Kelly M.; Boutet, Sébastien; Williams, Garth J.; Wang, Meitian; Li, Dianfan; Caffrey, Martin; Chapman, Henry N.; Spence, John C. H.; Fromme, Petra; Weierstall, Uwe; Stevens, Raymond C.; Cherezov, Vadim; Melcher, Karsten; Xu, H. Eric

    2016-04-01

    Serial femtosecond X-ray crystallography (SFX) using an X-ray free electron laser (XFEL) is a recent advancement in structural biology for solving crystal structures of challenging membrane proteins, including G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs), which often only produce microcrystals. An XFEL delivers highly intense X-ray pulses of femtosecond duration short enough to enable the collection of single diffraction images before significant radiation damage to crystals sets in. Here we report the deposition of the XFEL data and provide further details on crystallization, XFEL data collection and analysis, structure determination, and the validation of the structural model. The rhodopsin-arrestin crystal structure solved with SFX represents the first near-atomic resolution structure of a GPCR-arrestin complex, provides structural insights into understanding of arrestin-mediated GPCR signaling, and demonstrates the great potential of this SFX-XFEL technology for accelerating crystal structure determination of challenging proteins and protein complexes.

  16. Sensory rhodopsins I and II modulate a methylation/demethylation system in Halobacterium halobium phototaxis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spudich, E.N.; Takahashi, T.; Spudich, J.L.

    1989-01-01

    This work demonstrates that phototaxis stimuli in the archaebacterium Halobacterium halobium control a methylation/demethylation system in vivo through photoactivation of sensory rhodopsin I (SR-I) in either its attractant or repellent signaling form as well as through the repellent receptor sensory rhodopsin II (SR-II, also called phoborhodopsin). The effects of positive stimuli that suppress swimming reversals (i.e., an increase in attractant or decrease in repellent light) and negative stimuli that induce swimming reversals (i.e., a decrease in attractant or increase in repellent light) through each photoreceptor were monitored by assaying release of volatile [3H]methyl groups. This assay has been used to measure [3H]methanol produced during the process of adaptation to chemotactic stimuli in eubacteria. In H. halobium positive photostimuli produce a transient increase in the rate of demethylation followed by a decrease below the unstimulated value, whereas negative photostimuli cause an increase followed by a rate similar to that of the unstimulated value. Photoactivation of the SR-I attractant and simultaneous photoactivation of the SR-II repellent receptors cancel in their effects on demethylation, demonstrating the methylation system is regulated by an integrated signal. Analysis of mutants indicates that the source for the volatile methyl groups is intrinsic membrane proteins distinct from the chromoproteins that share the membrane. A methyl-accepting protein (94 kDa) previously correlated in amount with the SR-I chromoprotein (25 kDa) is shown here to be missing in a recently isolated SR-I-SR-II+ mutant (Flx3b), thus confirming the association of this protein with SR-I. Photoactivated SR-II in mutant Flx3b controls demethylation, predicting the existence of a photomodulated methyl-accepting component distinct from the 94-kDa protein of SR-I

  17. Early Events in Retinal Degeneration Caused by Rhodopsin Mutation or Pigment Epithelium Malfunction: Differences and Similarities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Pierdomenico, Johnny; García-Ayuso, Diego; Pinilla, Isabel; Cuenca, Nicolás; Vidal-Sanz, Manuel; Agudo-Barriuso, Marta; Villegas-Pérez, María P.

    2017-01-01

    To study the course of photoreceptor cell death and macro and microglial reactivity in two rat models of retinal degeneration with different etiologies. Retinas from P23H-1 (rhodopsin mutation) and Royal College of Surgeon (RCS, pigment epithelium malfunction) rats and age-matched control animals (Sprague-Dawley and Pievald Viro Glaxo, respectively) were cross-sectioned at different postnatal ages (from P10 to P60) and rhodopsin, L/M- and S-opsin, ionized calcium-binding adapter molecule 1 (Iba1), glial fibrillary acid protein (GFAP), and proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) proteins were immunodetected. Photoreceptor nuclei rows and microglial cells in the different retinal layers were quantified. Photoreceptor degeneration starts earlier and progresses quicker in P23H-1 than in RCS rats. In both models, microglial cell activation occurs simultaneously with the initiation of photoreceptor death while GFAP over-expression starts later. As degeneration progresses, the numbers of microglial cells increase in the retina, but decreasing in the inner retina and increasing in the outer retina, more markedly in RCS rats. Interestingly, and in contrast with healthy animals, microglial cells reach the outer nuclei and outer segment layers. The higher number of microglial cells in dystrophic retinas cannot be fully accounted by intraretinal migration and PCNA immunodetection revealed microglial proliferation in both models but more importantly in RCS rats. The etiology of retinal degeneration determines the initiation and pattern of photoreceptor cell death and simultaneously there is microglial activation and migration, while the macroglial response is delayed. The actions of microglial cells in the degeneration cannot be explained only in the basis of photoreceptor death because they participate more actively in the RCS model. Thus, the retinal degeneration caused by pigment epithelium malfunction is more inflammatory and would probably respond better to interventions

  18. Molecular dynamics study on the evolution of interfacial dislocation network and mechanical properties of Ni-based single crystal superalloys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Nan-Lin; Wu, Wen-Ping; Nie, Kai

    2018-05-01

    The evolution of misfit dislocation network at γ /γ‧ phase interface and tensile mechanical properties of Ni-based single crystal superalloys at various temperatures and strain rates are studied by using molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. From the simulations, it is found that with the increase of loading, the dislocation network effectively inhibits dislocations emitted in the γ matrix cutting into the γ‧ phase and absorbs the matrix dislocations to strengthen itself which increases the stability of structure. Under the influence of the temperature, the initial mosaic structure of dislocation network gradually becomes irregular, and the initial misfit stress and the elastic modulus slowly decline as temperature increasing. On the other hand, with the increase of the strain rate, it almost has no effect on the elastic modulus and the way of evolution of dislocation network, but contributes to the increases of the yield stress and tensile strength. Moreover, tension-compression asymmetry of Ni-based single crystal superalloys is also presented based on MD simulations.

  19. Evolution and molecular epidemiology of classical swine fever virus during a multi-annual outbreak amongst European wild boar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goller, Katja V; Gabriel, Claudia; Dimna, Mireille Le; Le Potier, Marie-Frédérique; Rossi, Sophie; Staubach, Christoph; Merboth, Matthias; Beer, Martin; Blome, Sandra

    2016-03-01

    Classical swine fever is a viral disease of pigs that carries tremendous socio-economic impact. In outbreak situations, genetic typing is carried out for the purpose of molecular epidemiology in both domestic pigs and wild boar. These analyses are usually based on harmonized partial sequences. However, for high-resolution analyses towards the understanding of genetic variability and virus evolution, full-genome sequences are more appropriate. In this study, a unique set of representative virus strains was investigated that was collected during an outbreak in French free-ranging wild boar in the Vosges-du-Nord mountains between 2003 and 2007. Comparative sequence and evolutionary analyses of the nearly full-length sequences showed only slow evolution of classical swine fever virus strains over the years and no impact of vaccination on mutation rates. However, substitution rates varied amongst protein genes; furthermore, a spatial and temporal pattern could be observed whereby two separate clusters were formed that coincided with physical barriers.

  20. The structural evolution of InN nanorods to microstructures on Si (111) by molecular beam epitaxy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anyebe, E A; Zhuang, Q; Kesaria, M; Krier, A

    2014-01-01

    We report the catalyst free growth of wurtzite InN nanorods (NRs) and microislands on bare Si (111) by plasma-assisted molecular beam epitaxy at various temperatures. The morphological evolution from NRs to three dimensional (3D) islands as a function of growth temperature is investigated. A combination of tapered, non-tapered, and pyramidal InN NRs are observed at 490 °C, whereas the InN evolves to faceted microislands with an increase in growth temperature to 540 °C and further developed to indented and smooth hemispherical structures at extremely high temperatures (630 °C). The evolution from NRs to microislands with increase in growth temperature is attributed to the lowering of the surface free energy of the growing crystals with disproportionate growth velocities along different growth fronts. The preferential adsorption of In atoms on the (0001) c-plane and (10-10) m-plane promotes the growth of NRs at relatively low growth temperature and 3D microislands at higher temperatures. The growth rate imbalance along different planes facilitates the development of facets on 3D microislands. A strong correlation between the morphological and structural properties of the 3D films is established. XRD studies reveal that the NRs and the faceted microislands are crystalline, whereas the hemispherical microislands grown at extremely high growth temperature contain In adlayers. Finally, photoluminescent emissions were observed at ∼0.75 eV from the InN NRs. (paper)

  1. Cloning and molecular evolution of the aldehyde dehydrogenase 2 gene (Aldh2) in bats (Chiroptera).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yao; Shen, Bin; Zhang, Junpeng; Jones, Gareth; He, Guimei

    2013-02-01

    Old World fruit bats (Pteropodidae) and New World fruit bats (Phyllostomidae) ingest significant quantities of ethanol while foraging. Mitochondrial aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH2, encoded by the Aldh2 gene) plays an important role in ethanol metabolism. To test whether the Aldh2 gene has undergone adaptive evolution in frugivorous and nectarivorous bats in relation to ethanol elimination, we sequenced part of the coding region of the gene (1,143 bp, ~73 % coverage) in 14 bat species, including three Old World fruit bats and two New World fruit bats. Our results showed that the Aldh2 coding sequences are highly conserved across all bat species we examined, and no evidence of positive selection was detected in the ancestral branches leading to Old World fruit bats and New World fruit bats. Further research is needed to determine whether other genes involved in ethanol metabolism have been the targets of positive selection in frugivorous and nectarivorous bats.

  2. FGF21 as an Endocrine Regulator in Lipid Metabolism: From Molecular Evolution to Physiology and Pathophysiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yusuke Murata

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available The FGF family comprises twenty-two structurally related proteins with functions in development and metabolism. The Fgf21 gene was generated early in vertebrate evolution. FGF21 acts as an endocrine regulator in lipid metabolism. Hepatic Fgf21 expression is markedly induced in mice by fasting or a ketogenic diet. Experiments with Fgf21 transgenic mice and cultured cells indicate that FGF21 exerts pharmacological effects on glucose and lipid metabolism in hepatocytes and adipocytes via cell surface FGF receptors. However, experiments with Fgf21 knockout mice indicate that FGF21 inhibits lipolysis in adipocytes during fasting and attenuates torpor induced by a ketogenic diet but maybe not a physiological regulator for these hepatic functions. These findings suggest the pharmacological effects to be distinct from the physiological roles. Serum FGF21 levels are increased in patients with metabolic diseases having insulin resistance, indicating that FGF21 is a metabolic regulator and a biomarker for these diseases.

  3. Gene duplication, silencing and expression alteration govern the molecular evolution of PRC2 genes in plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Furihata, Hazuka Y; Suenaga, Kazuya; Kawanabe, Takahiro; Yoshida, Takanori; Kawabe, Akira

    2016-10-13

    PRC2 genes were analyzed for their number of gene duplications, d N /d S ratios and expression patterns among Brassicaceae and Gramineae species. Although both amino acid sequences and copy number of the PRC2 genes were generally well conserved in both Brassicaceae and Gramineae species, we observed that some rapidly evolving genes experienced duplications and expression pattern changes. After multiple duplication events, all but one or two of the duplicated copies tend to be silenced. Silenced copies were reactivated in the endosperm and showed ectopic expression in developing seeds. The results indicated that rapid evolution of some PRC2 genes is initially caused by a relaxation of selective constraint following the gene duplication events. Several loci could become maternally expressed imprinted genes and acquired functional roles in the endosperm.

  4. Ancestral gene reconstruction and synthesis of ancient rhodopsins in the laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Belinda S W

    2003-08-01

    Laboratory synthesis of ancestral proteins offers an intriguing opportunity to study the past directly. The development of Bayesian methods to infer ancestral sequences, combined with advances in models of molecular evolution, and synthetic gene technology make this an increasingly promising approach in evolutionary studies of molecular function. Visual pigments form the first step in the biochemical cascade of events in the retina in all animals known to possess visual capabilities. In vertebrates, the necessity of spanning a dynamic range of light intensities of many orders of magnitude has given rise to two different types of photoreceptors, rods specialized for dim-light conditions, and cones for daylight and color vision. These photoreceptors contain different types of visual pigment genes. Reviewed here are methods of inferring ancestral sequences, chemical synthesis of artificial ancestral genes in the laboratory, and applications to the evolution of vertebrate visual systems and the experimental recreation of an archosaur rod visual pigment. The ancestral archosaurs gave rise to several notable lineages of diapsid reptiles, including the birds and the dinosaurs, and would have existed over 200 MYA. What little is known of their physiology comes from fossil remains, and inference based on the biology of their living descendants. Despite its age, an ancestral archosaur pigment was successfully recreated in the lab, and showed interesting properties of its wavelength sensitivity that may have implications for the visual capabilities of the ancestral archosaurs in dim light.

  5. Evolution through cold and deep waters: the molecular phylogeny of the Lithodidae (Crustacea: Decapoda)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Sally; Thatje, Sven

    2018-04-01

    The objectives of this work are to use gene sequence data to assess the hypothesis that the Lithodinae arose from ancestors with uncalcified abdomens in shallow waters of the North-East Pacific, investigate the monophyly and interrelationships of genera within the Lithodinae and to estimate the scale and minimum number of biogeographic transitions from the shallow environment to the deep sea and vice versa. To do this, phylogenetic analysis from three mitochondrial and three nuclear markers was conducted using minimum evolution, maximum likelihood and Bayesian methods. The Lithodinae as defined to include North Pacific genus Cryptolithodes may be paraphyletic, with the Hapalogastrinae and Cryptolithodes as sister taxa. This implies that the soft-bodied abdomen of the Hapalogastrinae might not be plesiomorphic for the Lithodidae. Paralomis, Lopholithodes, Phyllolithodes, Lithodes and Neolithodes share a common ancestor, from which the North Pacific Hapalogastrinae did not descend. Lithodid ancestors are likely to have had a north Pacific, shallow water distribution and to have had planktotrophic larvae. North Pacific genus Paralithodes is paraphyletic; P. brevipes is the most basal member of the genus (as sampled) while P. camtschaticus and P. platypus are more closely related to the genera Lithodes and Neolithodes. Genera Lithodes, Neolithodes and Paralomis (as sampled) are monophyletic if Glyptolithodes is included within Paralomis. Lopholithodes is closely related to, but not included within, the Paralomis genus. Paralomis is divided into at least two major lineages: one containing South Atlantic, West African, and Indian Ocean species, and the other containing Pacific and South American species. Several species of Paralomis do not resolve consistently with any other groups sampled, implying a complex and possibly rapid global evolution early in the history of the genus. Relationships within the Lithodes genus vary between analytical methods, suggesting that

  6. Nuclear magnetic resonance in solids: evolution of spin temperature under multipulse irradiation and high symmetry molecular motions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Quiroga, Luis

    1982-01-01

    In a first part, autocorrelation functions are calculated taking into account the symmetry of molecular motions by group theoretical techniques. This very general calculation method is then used to evaluate the NMR spin-lattice relaxation times T 1 and T 1 p as a function of the relative orientations of the magnetic field, the crystal and the rotation axis, in particular for cyclic, dihedral and cubic groups. Models of molecular reorientations such as jumps between a finite number of allowed orientations, rotational diffusion and superimposed reorientations are all investigated with the same formalism. In part two, the effect of the coherent excitation of spins, by multipulse sequences of the WHH-4 type, on the evolution of the heat capacity and spin temperature of the dipolar reservoir is analysed. It is shown both theoretically and experimentally that adiabatic (reversible) reduction of the dipolar Hamiltonian and its spin temperature is obtained when the amplitude of pulses (rotation angle) is slowly raised. The sudden switching on and off of the HW-8 sequence is then shown to lead to the same reversible reduction in a shorter time. It is also shown that, by this way, sensibility and selectivity of double resonance measurements of weak gyromagnetic ratio nuclei are strongly increased. This is experimentally illustrated in some cases. (author) [fr

  7. The environmental and molecular sciences laboratory project: Continuous evolution in leadership

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Knutson, D.E.; McClusky, J.K.

    1995-09-01

    The United States is embarking on an environmental cleanup effort that dwarfs previous scientific enterprise. Using current best available technology, the projected costs of cleaning up the tens of abounds of toxic waste sites, including DOE sites, is estimated to exceed one trillion dollars. That level of expenditure contains no guarantee that the sites can be restored to their original condition, and no consensus on ''how clean is clean enough.'' ''Ultimately, the scientific challenge is to determine as accurately as possible each term in the path that links the source of the contaminant with the particular biological end points or health effects and to understand the mechanisms that connect them. However, the present state of scientific knowledge regarding the effects of exogenous chemicals on human biology is very limited. Understanding the connections at the molecular level is, at best, a blurred picture and often a black box.'' Long term environmental research at the molecular level is needed to resolve the concerns, and form the building blocks for a structure of cost effective process improvement and regulatory reform

  8. The environmental and molecular sciences laboratory project: Continuous evolution in leadership

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Knutson, D.E.; McClusky, J.K.

    1995-09-01

    The United States is embarking on an environmental cleanup effort that dwarfs previous scientific enterprise. Using current best available technology, the projected costs of cleaning up the tens of abounds of toxic waste sites, including DOE sites, is estimated to exceed one trillion dollars. That level of expenditure contains no guarantee that the sites can be restored to their original condition, and no consensus on ``how clean is clean enough.`` ``Ultimately, the scientific challenge is to determine as accurately as possible each term in the path that links the source of the contaminant with the particular biological end points or health effects and to understand the mechanisms that connect them. However, the present state of scientific knowledge regarding the effects of exogenous chemicals on human biology is very limited. Understanding the connections at the molecular level is, at best, a blurred picture and often a black box.`` Long term environmental research at the molecular level is needed to resolve the concerns, and form the building blocks for a structure of cost effective process improvement and regulatory reform.

  9. Molecular structures of centromeric heterochromatin and karyotypic evolution in the Siamese crocodile (Crocodylus siamensis) (Crocodylidae, Crocodylia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawagoshi, Taiki; Nishida, Chizuko; Ota, Hidetoshi; Kumazawa, Yoshinori; Endo, Hideki; Matsuda, Yoichi

    2008-01-01

    Crocodilians have several unique karyotypic features, such as small diploid chromosome numbers (30-42) and the absence of dot-shaped microchromosomes. Of the extant crocodilian species, the Siamese crocodile (Crocodylus siamensis) has no more than 2n = 30, comprising mostly bi-armed chromosomes with large centromeric heterochromatin blocks. To investigate the molecular structures of C-heterochromatin and genomic compartmentalization in the karyotype, characterized by the disappearance of tiny microchromosomes and reduced chromosome number, we performed molecular cloning of centromeric repetitive sequences and chromosome mapping of the 18S-28S rDNA and telomeric (TTAGGG)( n ) sequences. The centromeric heterochromatin was composed mainly of two repetitive sequence families whose characteristics were quite different. Two types of GC-rich CSI-HindIII family sequences, the 305 bp CSI-HindIII-S (G+C content, 61.3%) and 424 bp CSI-HindIII-M (63.1%), were localized to the intensely PI-stained centric regions of all chromosomes, except for chromosome 2 with PI-negative heterochromatin. The 94 bp CSI-DraI (G+C content, 48.9%) was tandem-arrayed satellite DNA and localized to chromosome 2 and four pairs of small-sized chromosomes. The chromosomal size-dependent genomic compartmentalization that is supposedly unique to the Archosauromorpha was probably lost in the crocodilian lineage with the disappearance of microchromosomes followed by the homogenization of centromeric repetitive sequences between chromosomes, except for chromosome 2.

  10. THE EVOLUTION OF MOLECULAR LINE PROFILES INDUCED BY THE PROPAGATION OF C-SHOCK WAVES

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jimenez-Serra, I.; Caselli, P.; Martin-Pintado, J.; RodrIguez-Franco, A.; Viti, S.

    2009-01-01

    We present the first results of the expected variations of the molecular line emission arising from material recently affected by C-shocks (shock precursors). Our parametric model of the structure of C-shocks has been coupled with a radiative transfer code to calculate the molecular excitation and line profiles of shock tracers such as SiO, and of ion and neutral molecules such as H 13 CO + and HN 13 C, as the shock propagates through the unperturbed medium. Our results show that the SiO emission arising from the early stage of the magnetic precursor typically has very narrow line profiles slightly shifted in velocity with respect to the ambient cloud. This narrow emission is generated in the region where the bulk of the ion fluid has already slipped to larger velocities in the precursor as observed toward the young L1448-mm outflow. This strongly suggests that the detection of narrow SiO emission, and of an ion enhancement in young shocks, is produced by the magnetic precursor of C-shocks. In addition, our model shows that the different velocity components observed toward this outflow can be explained by the coexistence of different shocks at different evolutionary stages, within the same beam of the single-dish observations.

  11. Exploring the binding properties and structural stability of an opsin in the chytrid Spizellomyces punctatus using comparative and molecular modeling

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    Steven R. Ahrendt

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Background Opsin proteins are seven transmembrane receptor proteins which detect light. Opsins can be classified into two types and share little sequence identity: type 1, typically found in bacteria, and type 2, primarily characterized in metazoa. The type 2 opsins (Rhodopsins are a subfamily of G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs, a large and diverse class of seven transmembrane proteins and are generally restricted to metazoan lineages. Fungi use light receptors including opsins to sense the environment and transduce signals for developmental or metabolic changes. Opsins characterized in the Dikarya (Ascomycetes and Basidiomycetes are of the type 1 bacteriorhodopsin family but the early diverging fungal lineages have not been as well surveyed. We identified by sequence similarity a rhodopsin-like GPCR in genomes of early diverging chytrids and examined the structural characteristics of this protein to assess its likelihood to be homologous to animal rhodopsins and bind similar chromophores. Methods We used template-based structure modeling, automated ligand docking, and molecular modeling to assess the structural and binding properties of an identified opsin-like protein found in Spizellomyces punctatus, a unicellular, flagellated species belonging to Chytridiomycota, one of the earliest diverging fungal lineages. We tested if the sequence and inferred structure were consistent with a solved crystal structure of a type 2 rhodopsin from the squid Todarodes pacificus. Results Our results indicate that the Spizellomyces opsin has structural characteristics consistent with functional animal type 2 rhodopsins and is capable of maintaining a stable structure when associated with the retinaldehyde chromophore, specifically the 9-cis-retinal isomer. Together, these results support further the homology of Spizellomyces opsins to animal type 2 rhodopsins. Discussion This represents the first test of structure/function relationship of a type 2 rhodopsin

  12. Molecular phylogeny of the bivalve superfamily Galeommatoidea (Heterodonta, Veneroida) reveals dynamic evolution of symbiotic lifestyle and interphylum host switching

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Background Galeommatoidea is a superfamily of bivalves that exhibits remarkably diverse lifestyles. Many members of this group live attached to the body surface or inside the burrows of other marine invertebrates, including crustaceans, holothurians, echinoids, cnidarians, sipunculans and echiurans. These symbiotic species exhibit high host specificity, commensal interactions with hosts, and extreme morphological and behavioral adaptations to symbiotic life. Host specialization to various animal groups has likely played an important role in the evolution and diversification of this bivalve group. However, the evolutionary pathway that led to their ecological diversity is not well understood, in part because of their reduced and/or highly modified morphologies that have confounded traditional taxonomy. This study elucidates the taxonomy of the Galeommatoidea and their evolutionary history of symbiotic lifestyle based on a molecular phylogenic analysis of 33 galeommatoidean and five putative galeommatoidean species belonging to 27 genera and three families using two nuclear ribosomal genes (18S and 28S ribosomal DNA) and a nuclear (histone H3) and mitochondrial (cytochrome oxidase subunit I) protein-coding genes. Results Molecular phylogeny recovered six well-supported major clades within Galeommatoidea. Symbiotic species were found in all major clades, whereas free-living species were grouped into two major clades. Species symbiotic with crustaceans, holothurians, sipunculans, and echiurans were each found in multiple major clades, suggesting that host specialization to these animal groups occurred repeatedly in Galeommatoidea. Conclusions Our results suggest that the evolutionary history of host association in Galeommatoidea has been remarkably dynamic, involving frequent host switches between different animal phyla. Such an unusual pattern of dynamic host switching is considered to have resulted from their commensalistic lifestyle, in which they maintain filter

  13. Molecular phylogeny of the bivalve superfamily Galeommatoidea (Heterodonta, Veneroida reveals dynamic evolution of symbiotic lifestyle and interphylum host switching

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Goto Ryutaro

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Galeommatoidea is a superfamily of bivalves that exhibits remarkably diverse lifestyles. Many members of this group live attached to the body surface or inside the burrows of other marine invertebrates, including crustaceans, holothurians, echinoids, cnidarians, sipunculans and echiurans. These symbiotic species exhibit high host specificity, commensal interactions with hosts, and extreme morphological and behavioral adaptations to symbiotic life. Host specialization to various animal groups has likely played an important role in the evolution and diversification of this bivalve group. However, the evolutionary pathway that led to their ecological diversity is not well understood, in part because of their reduced and/or highly modified morphologies that have confounded traditional taxonomy. This study elucidates the taxonomy of the Galeommatoidea and their evolutionary history of symbiotic lifestyle based on a molecular phylogenic analysis of 33 galeommatoidean and five putative galeommatoidean species belonging to 27 genera and three families using two nuclear ribosomal genes (18S and 28S ribosomal DNA and a nuclear (histone H3 and mitochondrial (cytochrome oxidase subunit I protein-coding genes. Results Molecular phylogeny recovered six well-supported major clades within Galeommatoidea. Symbiotic species were found in all major clades, whereas free-living species were grouped into two major clades. Species symbiotic with crustaceans, holothurians, sipunculans, and echiurans were each found in multiple major clades, suggesting that host specialization to these animal groups occurred repeatedly in Galeommatoidea. Conclusions Our results suggest that the evolutionary history of host association in Galeommatoidea has been remarkably dynamic, involving frequent host switches between different animal phyla. Such an unusual pattern of dynamic host switching is considered to have resulted from their commensalistic lifestyle, in

  14. Molecular evolution of the Bovini tribe (Bovidae, Bovinae: Is there evidence of rapid evolution or reduced selective constraint in Domestic cattle?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    McCulloch Alan

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background If mutation within the coding region of the genome is largely not adaptive, the ratio of nonsynonymous (dN to synonymous substitutions (dS per site (dN/dS should be approximately equal among closely related species. Furthermore, dN/dS in divergence between species should be equivalent to dN/dS in polymorphisms. This hypothesis is of particular interest in closely related members of the Bovini tribe, because domestication has promoted rapid phenotypic divergence through strong artificial selection of some species while others remain undomesticated. We examined a number of genes that may be involved in milk production in Domestic cattle and a number of their wild relatives for evidence that domestication had affected molecular evolution. Elevated rates of dN/dS were further queried to determine if they were the result of positive selection, low effective population size (Ne or reduced selective constraint. Results We have found that the domestication process has contributed to higher dN/dS ratios in cattle, especially in the lineages leading to the Domestic cow (Bos taurus and Mithan (Bos frontalis and within some breeds of Domestic cow. However, the high rates of dN/dS polymorphism within B. taurus when compared to species divergence suggest that positive selection has not elevated evolutionary rates in these genes. Likewise, the low rate of dN/dS in Bison, which has undergone a recent population bottleneck, indicates a reduction in population size alone is not responsible for these observations. Conclusion The effect of selection depends on effective population size and the selection coefficient (Nes. Typically under domestication both selection pressure for traits important in fitness in the wild and Ne are reduced. Therefore, reduced selective constraint could be responsible for the observed elevated evolutionary ratios in domesticated species, especially in B. taurus and B. frontalis, which have the highest dN/dS in the

  15. Estimating single molecule conductance from spontaneous evolution of a molecular contact

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gil, M.; Malinowski, T.; Iazykov, M.; Klein, H. R.

    2018-03-01

    We present an original method to estimate the conductivity of a single molecule anchored to nanometric-sized metallic electrodes, using a Mechanically Controlled Break Junction operated at room temperature in the liquid. We record the conductance through the metal/molecules/metal nanocontact while keeping the metallic electrodes at a fixed distance. Taking advantage of thermal diffusion and electromigration, we let the contact naturally explore the more stable configurations around a chosen conductance value. The conductance of a single molecule is estimated from a statistical analysis of raw conductance and conductance standard deviation data for molecular contacts containing up to 14 molecules. The single molecule conductance values are interpreted as time-averaged conductance of an ensemble of conformers at thermal equilibrium.

  16. How discordant morphological and molecular evolution among microorganisms can revise our notions of biodiversity on earth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lahr, Daniel J. G.; Laughinghouse, H. Dail; Oliverio, Angela; Gao, Feng; Katz, Laura A.

    2014-01-01

    Microscopy has revealed a tremendous diversity of bacterial and eukaryotic forms. More recent molecular analyses show discordance in estimates of biodiversity based on morphological analyses. Moreover, phylogenetic analyses of the diversity of microbial forms have revealed evidence of convergence at scales as large as interdomain – i.e. convergent forms shared between bacteria and eukaryotes. Here, we highlight examples of such discordance, focusing on exemplary lineages such as testate amoebae, ciliates and cyanobacteria, which have long histories of morphological study. We discuss examples in two categories: 1) morphologically identical (or highly similar) individuals that are genetically distinct and 2) morphologically distinct individuals that are genetically distinct. We argue that hypotheses about discordance can be tested using the concept of neutral morphologies, or more broadly neutral phenotypes, as a null hypothesis. PMID:25156897

  17. Molecular phylogeny of the neotropical genus Christensonella (Orchidaceae, Maxillariinae): species delimitation and insights into chromosome evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koehler, Samantha; Cabral, Juliano S; Whitten, W Mark; Williams, Norris H; Singer, Rodrigo B; Neubig, Kurt M; Guerra, Marcelo; Souza, Anete P; Amaral, Maria do Carmo E

    2008-10-01

    Species' boundaries applied within Christensonella have varied due to the continuous pattern of variation and mosaic distribution of diagnostic characters. The main goals of this study were to revise the species' delimitation and propose a more stable classification for this genus. In order to achieve these aims phylogenetic relationships were inferred using DNA sequence data and cytological diversity within Christensonella was examined based on chromosome counts and heterochromatin patterns. The results presented describe sets of diagnostic morphological characters that can be used for species' identification. Phylogenetic studies were based on sequence data of nuclear and plastid regions, analysed using maximum parsimony and maximum likelihood criteria. Cytogenetic observations of mitotic cells were conducted using CMA and DAPI fluorochromes. Six of 21 currently accepted species were recovered. The results also support recognition of the 'C. pumila' clade as a single species. Molecular phylogenetic relationships within the 'C. acicularis-C. madida' and 'C. ferdinandiana-C. neowiedii' species' complexes were not resolved and require further study. Deeper relationships were incongruent between plastid and nuclear trees, but with no strong bootstrap support for either, except for the position of C. vernicosa. Cytogenetic data indicated chromosome numbers of 2n = 36, 38 and 76, and with substantial variation in the presence and location of CMA/DAPI heterochromatin bands. The recognition of ten species of Christensonella is proposed according to the molecular and cytogenetic patterns observed. In addition, diagnostic morphological characters are presented for each recognized species. Banding patterns and chromosome counts suggest the occurrence of centric fusion/fission events, especially for C. ferdinandiana. The results suggest that 2n = 36 karyotypes evolved from 2n = 38 through descendent dysploidy. Patterns of heterochromatin distribution and other karyotypic

  18. Molecular phylogenetics, seed morphometrics, chromosome number evolution and systematics of European Elatine L. (Elatinaceae species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gábor Sramkó

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The genus Elatine contains ca 25 species, all of which are small, herbaceous annuals distributed in ephemeral waters on both hemispheres. However, due to a high degree of morphological variability (as a consequence of their amphibious life-style, the taxonomy of this genus remains controversial. Thus, to fill this gap in knowledge, we present a detailed molecular phylogenetic study of this genus based on nuclear (rITS and plastid (accD-psaI, psbJ-petA, ycf6-psbM-trnD sequences using 27 samples from 13 species. On the basis of this phylogenetic analysis, we provide a solid phylogenetic background for the modern taxonomy of the European members of the genus. Traditionally accepted sections of this tree (i.e., Crypta and Elatinella were found to be monophyletic; only E. borchoni—found to be a basal member of the genus—has to be excluded from the latter lineage to achieve monophyly. A number of taxonomic conclusions can also be drawn: E. hexandra, a high-ploid species, is most likely a stabilised hybrid between the main sections; E. campylosperma merits full species status based on both molecular and morphological evidence; E. gussonei is a more widespread and genetically diverse species with two main lineages; and the presence of the Asian E. ambigua in the European flora is questionable. The main lineages recovered in this analysis are also supported by a number of synapomorphic morphological characters as well as uniform chromosome counts. Based on all the evidence presented here, two new subsections within Elatinella are described: subsection Hydropipera consisting of the temperate species of the section, and subsection Macropodae including the Mediterranean species of the section.

  19. Molecular Phylogeny of the Neotropical Genus Christensonella (Orchidaceae, Maxillariinae): Species Delimitation and Insights into Chromosome Evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koehler, Samantha; Cabral, Juliano S.; Whitten, W. Mark; Williams, Norris H.; Singer, Rodrigo B.; Neubig, Kurt M.; Guerra, Marcelo; Souza, Anete P.; Amaral, Maria do Carmo E.

    2008-01-01

    Background and Aims Species' boundaries applied within Christensonella have varied due to the continuous pattern of variation and mosaic distribution of diagnostic characters. The main goals of this study were to revise the species' delimitation and propose a more stable classification for this genus. In order to achieve these aims phylogenetic relationships were inferred using DNA sequence data and cytological diversity within Christensonella was examined based on chromosome counts and heterochromatin patterns. The results presented describe sets of diagnostic morphological characters that can be used for species' identification. Methods Phylogenetic studies were based on sequence data of nuclear and plastid regions, analysed using maximum parsimony and maximum likelihood criteria. Cytogenetic observations of mitotic cells were conducted using CMA and DAPI fluorochromes. Key Results Six of 21 currently accepted species were recovered. The results also support recognition of the ‘C. pumila’ clade as a single species. Molecular phylogenetic relationships within the ‘C. acicularis–C. madida’ and ‘C. ferdinandiana–C. neowiedii’ species' complexes were not resolved and require further study. Deeper relationships were incongruent between plastid and nuclear trees, but with no strong bootstrap support for either, except for the position of C. vernicosa. Cytogenetic data indicated chromosome numbers of 2n = 36, 38 and 76, and with substantial variation in the presence and location of CMA/DAPI heterochromatin bands. Conclusions The recognition of ten species of Christensonella is proposed according to the molecular and cytogenetic patterns observed. In addition, diagnostic morphological characters are presented for each recognized species. Banding patterns and chromosome counts suggest the occurrence of centric fusion/fission events, especially for C. ferdinandiana. The results suggest that 2n = 36 karyotypes evolved from 2n = 38 through descendent

  20. Evolution, genomics and epidemiology of Pseudomonas syringae: Challenges in Bacterial Molecular Plant Pathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baltrus, David A; McCann, Honour C; Guttman, David S

    2017-01-01

    A remarkable shift in our understanding of plant-pathogenic bacteria is underway. Until recently, nearly all research on phytopathogenic bacteria was focused on a small number of model strains, which provided a deep, but narrow, perspective on plant-microbe interactions. Advances in genome sequencing technologies have changed this by enabling the incorporation of much greater diversity into comparative and functional research. We are now moving beyond a typological understanding of a select collection of strains to a more generalized appreciation of the breadth and scope of plant-microbe interactions. The study of natural populations and evolution has particularly benefited from the expansion of genomic data. We are beginning to have a much deeper understanding of the natural genetic diversity, niche breadth, ecological constraints and defining characteristics of phytopathogenic species. Given this expanding genomic and ecological knowledge, we believe the time is ripe to evaluate what we know about the evolutionary dynamics of plant pathogens. © 2016 BSPP and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. A Comprehensive Study of Molecular Evolution at the Self-Incompatibility Locus of Rosaceae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashkani, Jahanshah; Rees, D J G

    2016-03-01

    The family Rosaceae includes a range of important fruit trees, most of which have the S-RNase-based self-incompatibility (SI). Several models have been developed to explain how pollen (SLF) and pistil (S-RNase) components of the S-locus interact. It was discovered in 2010 that additional SLF proteins are involved in pollen specificity, and a Collaborative Non-Self Recognition model has been proposed for SI in Solanaceae; however, the validity of such model remains to be elucidated for other species. The results of this study support the divergent evolution of the S-locus genes from two Rosaceae subfamilies, Prunoideae/Amygdaloideae and Maloideae, The difference identified in the selective pressures between the two lineages provides evidence for positive selection at specific sites in both the S-RNase and the SLF proteins. The evolutionary findings of this study support the role of multiple SLF proteins leading to a Collaborative Non-Self Recognition model for SI in the Maloideae. Furthermore, the identification of the sites responsible for SI specificity determination and the mapping of these sites onto the modelled tertiary structure of ancestor proteins provide useful information for rational functional redesign and protein engineering for the future engineering of new functional alleles providing increased diversity in the SI system in the Maloideae.

  2. Molecular evolution of shattering loci in U.S. weedy rice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thurber, Carrie S; Reagon, Michael; Gross, Briana L; Olsen, Kenneth M; Jia, Yulin; Caicedo, Ana L

    2010-08-01

    Cultivated rice fields worldwide are plagued with weedy rice, a conspecific weed of cultivated rice (Oryza sativa L.). The persistence of weedy rice has been attributed, in part, to its ability to shatter (disperse) seed prior to crop harvesting. In the United States, separately evolved weedy rice groups have been shown to share genomic identity with exotic domesticated cultivars. Here, we investigate the shattering phenotype in a collection of U.S. weedy rice accessions, as well as wild and cultivated relatives. We find that all U.S. weedy rice groups shatter seeds easily, despite multiple origins, and in contrast to a decrease in shattering ability seen in cultivated groups. We assessed allelic identity and diversity at the major shattering locus, sh4, in weedy rice; we find that all cultivated and weedy rice, regardless of population, share similar haplotypes at sh4, and all contain a single derived mutation associated with decreased seed shattering. Our data constitute the strongest evidence to date of an evolution of weeds from domesticated backgrounds. The combination of a shared cultivar sh4 allele and a highly shattering phenotype, suggests that U.S. weedy rice have re-acquired the shattering trait after divergence from their progenitors through alternative genetic mechanisms.

  3. Spatial Temporal Dynamics and Molecular Evolution of Re-Emerging Rabies Virus in Taiwan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yung-Cheng Lin

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Taiwan has been recognized by the World Organization for Animal Health as rabies-free since 1961. Surprisingly, rabies virus (RABV was identified in a dead Formosan ferret badger in July 2013. Later, more infected ferret badgers were reported from different geographic regions of Taiwan. In order to know its evolutionary history and spatial temporal dynamics of this virus, phylogeny was reconstructed by maximum likelihood and Bayesian methods based on the full-length of glycoprotein (G, matrix protein (M, and nucleoprotein (N genes. The evolutionary rates and phylogeographic were determined using Beast and SPREAD software. Phylogenetic trees showed a monophyletic group containing all of RABV isolates from Taiwan and it further separated into three sub-groups. The estimated nucleotide substitution rates of G, M, and N genes were between 2.49 × 10−4–4.75 × 10−4 substitutions/site/year, and the mean ratio of dN/dS was significantly low. The time of the most recent common ancestor was estimated around 75, 89, and 170 years, respectively. Phylogeographic analysis suggested the origin of the epidemic could be in Eastern Taiwan, then the Formosan ferret badger moved across the Central Range of Taiwan to western regions and separated into two branches. In this study, we illustrated the evolution history and phylogeographic of RABV in Formosan ferret badgers.

  4. [Molecular evolution of the sulphite efflux gene SSU1 in Saccharomyces cerevisiae].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Li-Xin; Sun, Fei-Fei; Huang, Yan-Yan; Li, Zhen-Chong

    2013-11-01

    The SSU1 gene encoding a membrane sulfite pump is a main facilitator invovled in sulfite efflux. In Saccharomyce cerevisiae, various range of resistance to sulfite was observed among strains. To explore the evolution traits of SSU1 gene, the population data of S. cerevisiae were collected and analyzed. The phylogenetic analysis indicated that S. cerevisiae population can be classified into three sub-populations, and the positive selection was detected in population by McDonald-Kreitman test. The anaylsis of Ka/Ks ratios further showed that S. cerevisiae sub-population was undergoing positive selection. This finding was also supported by PAML branch model. Nine potential positive selection sites were predicted by branch-site model, and four sites exclusively belong to the sub-population under positive seletion. The data from ssulp protein structure demonstrated that three sites are substitutions between polar and hydrophobic amino acids, and only one site of substitutaion from basic amino acid to basic amino acid (345R/K). Because amino acid pKa values are crucial for sulfite pump to maintain their routine function, positive selection of these amino acid substitutions might affect sulfite efflux efficient.

  5. Evolution of feeding specialization in Tanganyikan scale-eating cichlids: a molecular phylogenetic approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nishida Mutsumi

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Cichlid fishes in Lake Tanganyika exhibit remarkable diversity in their feeding habits. Among them, seven species in the genus Perissodus are known for their unique feeding habit of scale eating with specialized feeding morphology and behaviour. Although the origin of the scale-eating habit has long been questioned, its evolutionary process is still unknown. In the present study, we conducted interspecific phylogenetic analyses for all nine known species in the tribe Perissodini (seven Perissodus and two Haplotaxodon species using amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP analyses of the nuclear DNA. On the basis of the resultant phylogenetic frameworks, the evolution of their feeding habits was traced using data from analyses of stomach contents, habitat depths, and observations of oral jaw tooth morphology. Results AFLP analyses resolved the phylogenetic relationships of the Perissodini, strongly supporting monophyly for each species. The character reconstruction of feeding ecology based on the AFLP tree suggested that scale eating evolved from general carnivorous feeding to highly specialized scale eating. Furthermore, scale eating is suggested to have evolved in deepwater habitats in the lake. Oral jaw tooth shape was also estimated to have diverged in step with specialization for scale eating. Conclusion The present evolutionary analyses of feeding ecology and morphology based on the obtained phylogenetic tree demonstrate for the first time the evolutionary process leading from generalised to highly specialized scale eating, with diversification in feeding morphology and behaviour among species.

  6. High throughput techniques to reveal the molecular physiology and evolution of digestion in spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuzita, Felipe J; Pinkse, Martijn W H; Patane, José S L; Verhaert, Peter D E M; Lopes, Adriana R

    2016-09-07

    Spiders are known for their predatory efficiency and for their high capacity of digesting relatively large prey. They do this by combining both extracorporeal and intracellular digestion. Whereas many high throughput ("-omics") techniques focus on biomolecules in spider venom, so far this approach has not yet been applied to investigate the protein composition of spider midgut diverticula (MD) and digestive fluid (DF). We here report on our investigations of both MD and DF of the spider Nephilingis (Nephilengys) cruentata through the use of next generation sequencing and shotgun proteomics. This shows that the DF is composed of a variety of hydrolases including peptidases, carbohydrases, lipases and nuclease, as well as of toxins and regulatory proteins. We detect 25 astacins in the DF. Phylogenetic analysis of the corresponding transcript(s) in Arachnida suggests that astacins have acquired an unprecedented role for extracorporeal digestion in Araneae, with different orthologs used by each family. The results of a comparative study of spiders in distinct physiological conditions allow us to propose some digestion mechanisms in this interesting animal taxon. All the high throughput data allowed the demonstration that DF is a secretion originating from the MD. We identified enzymes involved in the extracellular and intracellular phases of digestion. Besides that, data analyses show a large gene duplication event in Araneae digestive process evolution, mainly of astacin genes. We were also able to identify proteins expressed and translated in the digestive system, which until now had been exclusively associated to venom glands.

  7. Evolution, systematics, and phylogeography of pleistocene horses in the new world: a molecular perspective.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    2005-08-01

    Full Text Available The rich fossil record of horses has made them a classic example of evolutionary processes. However, while the overall picture of equid evolution is well known, the details are surprisingly poorly understood, especially for the later Pliocene and Pleistocene, c. 3 million to 0.01 million years (Ma ago, and nowhere more so than in the Americas. There is no consensus on the number of equid species or even the number of lineages that existed in these continents. Likewise, the origin of the endemic South American genus Hippidion is unresolved, as is the phylogenetic position of the "stilt-legged" horses of North America. Using ancient DNA sequences, we show that, in contrast to current models based on morphology and a recent genetic study, Hippidion was phylogenetically close to the caballine (true horses, with origins considerably more recent than the currently accepted date of c. 10 Ma. Furthermore, we show that stilt-legged horses, commonly regarded as Old World migrants related to the hemionid asses of Asia, were in fact an endemic North American lineage. Finally, our data suggest that there were fewer horse species in late Pleistocene North America than have been named on morphological grounds. Both caballine and stilt-legged lineages may each have comprised a single, wide-ranging species.

  8. Evolution, systematics, and phylogeography of pleistocene horses in the new world: a molecular perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weinstock, Jaco; Willerslev, Eske; Sher, Andrei; Tong, Wenfei; Ho, Simon Y W; Rubenstein, Dan; Storer, John; Burns, James; Martin, Larry; Bravi, Claudio; Prieto, Alfredo; Froese, Duane; Scott, Eric; Xulong, Lai; Cooper, Alan

    2005-08-01

    The rich fossil record of horses has made them a classic example of evolutionary processes. However, while the overall picture of equid evolution is well known, the details are surprisingly poorly understood, especially for the later Pliocene and Pleistocene, c. 3 million to 0.01 million years (Ma) ago, and nowhere more so than in the Americas. There is no consensus on the number of equid species or even the number of lineages that existed in these continents. Likewise, the origin of the endemic South American genus Hippidion is unresolved, as is the phylogenetic position of the "stilt-legged" horses of North America. Using ancient DNA sequences, we show that, in contrast to current models based on morphology and a recent genetic study, Hippidion was phylogenetically close to the caballine (true) horses, with origins considerably more recent than the currently accepted date of c. 10 Ma. Furthermore, we show that stilt-legged horses, commonly regarded as Old World migrants related to the hemionid asses of Asia, were in fact an endemic North American lineage. Finally, our data suggest that there were fewer horse species in late Pleistocene North America than have been named on morphological grounds. Both caballine and stilt-legged lineages may each have comprised a single, wide-ranging species.

  9. Surface Functionalization of g-C 3 N 4 : Molecular-Level Design of Noble-Metal-Free Hydrogen Evolution Photocatalysts

    KAUST Repository

    Chen, Yin; Lin, Bin; Yu, Weili; Yang, Yong; Bashir, Shahid M.; Wang, Hong; Takanabe, Kazuhiro; Idriss, Hicham; Basset, Jean-Marie

    2015-01-01

    A stable noble-metal-free hydrogen evolution photocatalyst based on graphite carbon nitride (g-C3N4) was developed by a molecular-level design strategy. Surface functionalization was successfully conducted to introduce a single nickel active site

  10. First comparative study of primate morphological and molecular evolutionary rates including muscle data: implications for the tempo and mode of primate and human evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diogo, Rui; Peng, Zuogang; Wood, Bernard

    2013-01-01

    Here we provide the first report about the rates of muscle evolution derived from Bayesian and parsimony cladistic analyses of primate higher-level phylogeny, and compare these rates with published rates of molecular evolution. It is commonly accepted that there is a ‘general molecular slow-down of hominoids’, but interestingly the rates of muscle evolution in the nodes leading and within the hominoid clade are higher than those in the vast majority of other primate clades. The rate of muscle evolution at the node leading to Homo (1.77) is higher than that at the nodes leading to Pan (0.89) and particularly to Gorilla (0.28). Notably, the rates of muscle evolution at the major euarchontan and primate nodes are different, but within each major primate clade (Strepsirrhini, Platyrrhini, Cercopithecidae and Hominoidea) the rates at the various nodes, and particularly at the nodes leading to the higher groups (i.e. including more than one genera), are strikingly similar. We explore the implications of these new data for the tempo and mode of primate and human evolution. PMID:23320764

  11. A molecular timescale of eukaryote evolution and the rise of complex multicellular life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hedges, S. Blair; Blair, Jaime E.; Venturi, Maria L.; Shoe, Jason L.

    2004-01-01

    BACKGROUND: The pattern and timing of the rise in complex multicellular life during Earth's history has not been established. Great disparity persists between the pattern suggested by the fossil record and that estimated by molecular clocks, especially for plants, animals, fungi, and the deepest branches of the eukaryote tree. Here, we used all available protein sequence data and molecular clock methods to place constraints on the increase in complexity through time. RESULTS: Our phylogenetic analyses revealed that (i) animals are more closely related to fungi than to plants, (ii) red algae are closer to plants than to animals or fungi, (iii) choanoflagellates are closer to animals than to fungi or plants, (iv) diplomonads, euglenozoans, and alveolates each are basal to plants+animals+fungi, and (v) diplomonads are basal to other eukaryotes (including alveolates and euglenozoans). Divergence times were estimated from global and local clock methods using 20-188 proteins per node, with data treated separately (multigene) and concatenated (supergene). Different time estimation methods yielded similar results (within 5%): vertebrate-arthropod (964 million years ago, Ma), Cnidaria-Bilateria (1,298 Ma), Porifera-Eumetozoa (1,351 Ma), Pyrenomycetes-Plectomycetes (551 Ma), Candida-Saccharomyces (723 Ma), Hemiascomycetes-filamentous Ascomycota (982 Ma), Basidiomycota-Ascomycota (968 Ma), Mucorales-Basidiomycota (947 Ma), Fungi-Animalia (1,513 Ma), mosses-vascular plants (707 Ma), Chlorophyta-Tracheophyta (968 Ma), Rhodophyta-Chlorophyta+Embryophyta (1,428 Ma), Plantae-Animalia (1,609 Ma), Alveolata-plants+animals+fungi (1,973 Ma), Euglenozoa-plants+animals+fungi (1,961 Ma), and Giardia-plants+animals+fungi (2,309 Ma). By extrapolation, mitochondria arose approximately 2300-1800 Ma and plastids arose 1600-1500 Ma. Estimates of the maximum number of cell types of common ancestors, combined with divergence times, showed an increase from two cell types at 2500 Ma to

  12. A molecular timescale of eukaryote evolution and the rise of complex multicellular life

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Venturi Maria L

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The pattern and timing of the rise in complex multicellular life during Earth's history has not been established. Great disparity persists between the pattern suggested by the fossil record and that estimated by molecular clocks, especially for plants, animals, fungi, and the deepest branches of the eukaryote tree. Here, we used all available protein sequence data and molecular clock methods to place constraints on the increase in complexity through time. Results Our phylogenetic analyses revealed that (i animals are more closely related to fungi than to plants, (ii red algae are closer to plants than to animals or fungi, (iii choanoflagellates are closer to animals than to fungi or plants, (iv diplomonads, euglenozoans, and alveolates each are basal to plants+animals+fungi, and (v diplomonads are basal to other eukaryotes (including alveolates and euglenozoans. Divergence times were estimated from global and local clock methods using 20–188 proteins per node, with data treated separately (multigene and concatenated (supergene. Different time estimation methods yielded similar results (within 5%: vertebrate-arthropod (964 million years ago, Ma, Cnidaria-Bilateria (1,298 Ma, Porifera-Eumetozoa (1,351 Ma, Pyrenomycetes-Plectomycetes (551 Ma, Candida-Saccharomyces (723 Ma, Hemiascomycetes-filamentous Ascomycota (982 Ma, Basidiomycota-Ascomycota (968 Ma, Mucorales-Basidiomycota (947 Ma, Fungi-Animalia (1,513 Ma, mosses-vascular plants (707 Ma, Chlorophyta-Tracheophyta (968 Ma, Rhodophyta-Chlorophyta+Embryophyta (1,428 Ma, Plantae-Animalia (1,609 Ma, Alveolata-plants+animals+fungi (1,973 Ma, Euglenozoa-plants+animals+fungi (1,961 Ma, and Giardia-plants+animals+fungi (2,309 Ma. By extrapolation, mitochondria arose approximately 2300-1800 Ma and plastids arose 1600-1500 Ma. Estimates of the maximum number of cell types of common ancestors, combined with divergence times, showed an increase from two cell types at 2500 Ma to ~10

  13. Molecular evolution of H1N1 swine influenza in Guangdong, China, 2016-2017.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Mengkai; Huang, Junming; Bu, Dexin; Yu, Zhiqing; Fu, Xinliang; Ji, Chihai; Zhou, Pei; Zhang, Guihong

    2018-06-01

    Swine are the main host of the H1N1 swine influenza virus (SIV), however, H1N1 can also infect humans and occasionally cause serious respiratory disease. To trace the evolution of the SIV in Guangdong, China, we performed an epidemic investigation during the period of 2016-2017. Nine H1N1 influenza viruses were isolated from swine nasal swabs. Antigenic analysis revealed that these viruses belonged to two distinct antigenic groups, represented by A/Swine/Guangdong/101/2016 and A/Swine/Guangdong/52/2017. Additionally, three genotypes, known as GD52/17-like, GD493/17-like and GD101/16-like, were identified by phylogenetic analysis. Importantly, the genotypes including a minimum of 4 pdm/09-origin internal genes have become prevalent in China in recent years. A total of 2966 swine serum samples were used to perform hemagglutination inhibition (HI) tests, and the results showed that the seroprevalence values of SW/GD/101/16 (32.2% in 2016, 32.1% in 2017) were significantly higher than the seroprevalence values of SW/GD/52/17 (18.0% in 2016, 16.7% in 2017). Our study showed that the three reassortant genotypes of H1N1 SIV currently circulating in China are stable, but H1N1pdm09 poses challenges to human health by the introduction of internal genes into these reassortant genotypes. Strengthening SIV surveillance is therefore critical for SIV control and minimizing its potential threat to public health. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Molecular evolution and functional characterization of Drosophila insulin-like peptides.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sebastian Grönke

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Multicellular animals match costly activities, such as growth and reproduction, to the environment through nutrient-sensing pathways. The insulin/IGF signaling (IIS pathway plays key roles in growth, metabolism, stress resistance, reproduction, and longevity in diverse organisms including mammals. Invertebrate genomes often contain multiple genes encoding insulin-like ligands, including seven Drosophila insulin-like peptides (DILPs. We investigated the evolution, diversification, redundancy, and functions of the DILPs, combining evolutionary analysis, based on the completed genome sequences of 12 Drosophila species, and functional analysis, based on newly-generated knock-out mutations for all 7 dilp genes in D. melanogaster. Diversification of the 7 DILPs preceded diversification of Drosophila species, with stable gene diversification and family membership, suggesting stabilising selection for gene function. Gene knock-outs demonstrated both synergy and compensation of expression between different DILPs, notably with DILP3 required for normal expression of DILPs 2 and 5 in brain neurosecretory cells and expression of DILP6 in the fat body compensating for loss of brain DILPs. Loss of DILP2 increased lifespan and loss of DILP6 reduced growth, while loss of DILP7 did not affect fertility, contrary to its proposed role as a Drosophila relaxin. Importantly, loss of DILPs produced in the brain greatly extended lifespan but only in the presence of the endosymbiontic bacterium Wolbachia, demonstrating a specific interaction between IIS and Wolbachia in lifespan regulation. Furthermore, loss of brain DILPs blocked the responses of lifespan and fecundity to dietary restriction (DR and the DR response of these mutants suggests that IIS extends lifespan through mechanisms that both overlap with those of DR and through additional mechanisms that are independent of those at work in DR. Evolutionary conservation has thus been accompanied by synergy

  15. Light-induced, GTP-binding protein mediated membrane currents of Xenopus oocytes injected with rhodopsin of cephalopods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ando, H; Seidou, M; Kito, Y

    1991-01-01

    Xenopus oocytes that were injected with rhabdomeric membranes of squid and octopus photoreceptors acquired light sensitivity. The injected oocytes showed a light-induced current having characteristics similar to other G-protein-mediated Cl- currents induced by the activation of other membrane receptors. Pretreatment of the oocytes with pertussis toxin before the injection suppressed the generation of the light-induced current, indicating an ability of cephalopod rhodopsin to cross-react with an endogenous G-protein of Xenopus oocytes.

  16. Variation in rhodopsin kinase expression alters the dim flash response shut off and the light adaptation in rod photoreceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakurai, Keisuke; Young, Joyce E; Kefalov, Vladimir J; Khani, Shahrokh C

    2011-08-29

    Rod photoreceptors are exquisitely sensitive light detectors that function in dim light. The timely inactivation of their light responses is critical for the ability of rods to reliably detect and count photons. A key step in the inactivation of the rod transduction is the phosphorylation of the rod visual pigment, rhodopsin, catalyzed by G-protein-dependent receptor kinase 1 (GRK1). Absence of GRK1 greatly prolongs the photoreceptors' light response and enhances their susceptibility to degeneration. This study examined the light responses from mouse rods expressing various levels of GRK1 to evaluate how their function is modulated by rhodopsin inactivation. Transretinal and single-cell rod electrophysiological recordings were obtained from several strains of mice expressing GRK1 at 0.3- to 3-fold the wild-type levels. The effect of GRK1 expression level on the function of mouse rods was examined in darkness and during background adaptation. Altering the expression of GRK1 from 0.3- to 3-fold that in wild-type rods had little effect on the single photon response amplitude. Notably, increasing the expression level of GRK1 accelerated the dim flash response shut off but had no effect on the saturated response shut off. Additionally, GRK1 excess abolished the acceleration of saturated responses shut off during light adaptation. These results demonstrate that rhodopsin inactivation can modulate the kinetics of recovery from dim light stimulation. More importantly, the ratio of rhodopsin kinase to its modulator recoverin appears critical for the proper adaptation of rods and the acceleration of their response shut off in background light.

  17. Modulation of rhodopsin gene expression and signaling mechanisms evoked by endothelins in goldfish and murine pigment cell lines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G.J.D. Lopes

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Endothelins (ETs and sarafotoxins (SRTXs belong to a family of vasoconstrictor peptides, which regulate pigment migration and/or production in vertebrate pigment cells. The teleost Carassius auratus erythrophoroma cell line, GEM-81, and Mus musculus B16 melanocytes express rhodopsin, as well as the ET receptors, ETB and ETA, respectively. Both cell lines are photoresponsive, and respond to light with a decreased proliferation rate. For B16, the doubling time of cells kept in 14-h light (14L:10-h darkness (10D was higher compared to 10L:14D, or to DD. The doubling time of cells kept in 10L:14D was also higher compared to DD. Using real-time PCR, we demonstrated that SRTX S6c (12-h treatment, 100 pM and 1 nM; 24-h treatment, 1 nM and ET-1 (12-h treatment, 10 and 100 pM; 24- and 48-h treatments, 100 pM increased rhodopsin mRNA levels in GEM-81 and B16 cells, respectively. This modulation involves protein kinase C (PKC and the mitogen-activated protein kinase cascade in GEM-81 cells, and phospholipase C, Ca2+, calmodulin, a Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent kinase, and PKC in B16 cells. Cells were kept under constant darkness throughout the gene expression experiments. These results show that rhodopsin mRNA levels can be modulated by SRTXs/ETs in vertebrate pigment cells. It is possible that SRTX S6c binding to the ETB receptors in GEM-81 cells, and ET-1 binding to ETA receptors in B16 melanocytes, although activating diverse intracellular signaling mechanisms, mobilize transcription factors such as c-Fos, c-Jun, c-Myc, and neural retina leucine zipper protein. These activated transcription factors may be involved in the positive regulation of rhodopsin mRNA levels in these cell lines.

  18. Molecular evolution of broadly neutralizing Llama antibodies to the CD4-binding site of HIV-1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCoy, Laura E; Rutten, Lucy; Frampton, Dan; Anderson, Ian; Granger, Luke; Bashford-Rogers, Rachael; Dekkers, Gillian; Strokappe, Nika M; Seaman, Michael S; Koh, Willie; Grippo, Vanina; Kliche, Alexander; Verrips, Theo; Kellam, Paul; Fassati, Ariberto; Weiss, Robin A

    2014-12-01

    To date, no immunization of humans or animals has elicited broadly neutralizing sera able to prevent HIV-1 transmission; however, elicitation of broad and potent heavy chain only antibodies (HCAb) has previously been reported in llamas. In this study, the anti-HIV immune responses in immunized llamas were studied via deep sequencing analysis using broadly neutralizing monoclonal HCAbs as a guides. Distinct neutralizing antibody lineages were identified in each animal, including two defined by novel antibodies (as variable regions called VHH) identified by robotic screening of over 6000 clones. The combined application of five VHH against viruses from clades A, B, C and CRF_AG resulted in neutralization as potent as any of the VHH individually and a predicted 100% coverage with a median IC50 of 0.17 µg/ml for the panel of 60 viruses tested. Molecular analysis of the VHH repertoires of two sets of immunized animals showed that each neutralizing lineage was only observed following immunization, demonstrating that they were elicited de novo. Our results show that immunization can induce potent and broadly neutralizing antibodies in llamas with features similar to human antibodies and provide a framework to analyze the effectiveness of immunization protocols.

  19. Molecular evolution of Zika virus during its emergence in the 20(th century.

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    Oumar Faye

    Full Text Available Zika virus (ZIKV is a mosquito-borne flavivirus first isolated in Uganda in 1947. Although entomological and virologic surveillance have reported ZIKV enzootic activity in diverse countries of Africa and Asia, few human cases were reported until 2007, when a Zika fever epidemic took place in Micronesia. In the context of West Africa, the WHO Collaborating Centre for Arboviruses and Hemorrhagic Fever at Institut Pasteur of Dakar (http://www.pasteur.fr/recherche/banques/CRORA/ reports the periodic circulation of ZIKV since 1968. Despite several reports on ZIKV, the genetic relationships among viral strains from West Africa remain poorly understood. To evaluate the viral spread and its molecular epidemiology, we investigated 37 ZIKV isolates collected from 1968 to 2002 in six localities in Senegal and Côte d'Ivoire. In addition, we included strains from six other countries. Our results suggested that these two countries in West Africa experienced at least two independent introductions of ZIKV during the 20(th century, and that apparently these viral lineages were not restricted by mosquito vector species. Moreover, we present evidence that ZIKV has possibly undergone recombination in nature and that a loss of the N154 glycosylation site in the envelope protein was a possible adaptive response to the Aedes dalzieli vector.

  20. Molecular epidemiology and evolution in an outbreak of fulminant hepatitis B virus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bracho, Maria Alma; Gosalbes, María José; González, Francisco; Moya, Andrés; González-Candelas, Fernando

    2006-04-01

    In order to establish the transmission pathway for two outbreak patients affected by fulminant hepatitis B (FHB) following a shared period of hospitalization, we sequenced the complete genomes of the hepatitis B viruses (HBV) isolated from them as well as from the suspected common source and 11 additional controls. Phylogenetic and statistical analyses of these sequences revealed that the two FHB patients were indeed infected by a common source and that the fatal development of the disease did not appear to be associated with any mutation previously reported to be related to FHB. These data have also allowed us to estimate the extent and distribution of genetic variability along the genomes of HBV genotype D samples from the same source population. As a result of these analyses, we provide an improved statistical method to individualize the assignment of each suspected patient and the source of an outbreak and information on which genome region to analyze in the molecular epidemiological assessment of hepatitis B virus transmission cases.

  1. Chromosome-scale comparative sequence analysis unravels molecular mechanisms of genome evolution between two wheat cultivars

    KAUST Repository

    Thind, Anupriya Kaur

    2018-02-08

    Background: Recent improvements in DNA sequencing and genome scaffolding have paved the way to generate high-quality de novo assemblies of pseudomolecules representing complete chromosomes of wheat and its wild relatives. These assemblies form the basis to compare the evolutionary dynamics of wheat genomes on a megabase-scale. Results: Here, we provide a comparative sequence analysis of the 700-megabase chromosome 2D between two bread wheat genotypes, the old landrace Chinese Spring and the elite Swiss spring wheat line CH Campala Lr22a. There was a high degree of sequence conservation between the two chromosomes. Analysis of large structural variations revealed four large insertions/deletions (InDels) of >100 kb. Based on the molecular signatures at the breakpoints, unequal crossing over and double-strand break repair were identified as the evolutionary mechanisms that caused these InDels. Three of the large InDels affected copy number of NLRs, a gene family involved in plant immunity. Analysis of single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) density revealed three haploblocks of 8 Mb, 9 Mb and 48 Mb with a 35-fold increased SNP density compared to the rest of the chromosome. Conclusions: This comparative analysis of two high-quality chromosome assemblies enabled a comprehensive assessment of large structural variations. The insight obtained from this analysis will form the basis of future wheat pan-genome studies.

  2. Evolution of elastic precursor and plastic shock wave in copper via molecular dynamics simulations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perriot, Romain; Zhakhovsky, Vasily V; Oleynik, Ivan I; Inogamov, Nail A

    2014-01-01

    Large-scale molecular dynamics (MD) simulations are performed to investigate shock propagation in single crystal copper. It is shown that the P-V plastic Hugoniot is unique regardless of the sample's orientation, its microstructure, or its length. However, the P-V pathway to the final state is not, and depends on many factors. Specifically, it is shown that the pressure in the elastic precursor (the Hugoniot elastic limit (HEL)) decreases as the shock wave propagates in a micron-sized sample. The attenuation of the HEL in sufficiently-long samples is the main source of disagreement between previous MD simulations and experiment: while single crystal experiments showed that the plastic shock speed is orientation-independent, the simulated plastic shock speed was observed to be orientation-dependent in relatively short single-crystal samples. Such orientation dependence gradually disappears for relatively long, micrometer-sized, samples for all three low-index crystallographic directions (100), (110), and (111), and the plastic shock velocities for all three directions approach the one measured in experiment. The MD simulations also demonstrate the existence of subsonic plastic shock waves generated by relatively weak supporting pressures.

  3. Molecular phylogenetics of emydine turtles: taxonomic revision and the evolution of shell kinesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feldman, Chris R; Parham, James Ford

    2002-03-01

    The 10 extant species of emydine turtles represent an array of morphological and ecological forms recognizable and popular among scientists and hobbyists. Nevertheless, the phylogenetic affinities of most emydines remain contentious. Here, we examine the evolutionary relationships of emydine turtles using 2092 bp of DNA encoding the mitochondrial genes cyt b, ND4, and adjacent tRNAs. These data contain 339 parsimony informative characters that we use to erect hypotheses of relationships for the Emydinae. Both maximum parsimony and maximum likelihood methods yield a monophyletic Emydinae in which all but three nodes are well resolved. Emys orbicularis, Emydoidea blandingii, and Clemmys marmorata form a monophyletic clade, as do the species of Terrapene. Clemmys muhlenbergii and Clemmys insculpta form a third monophyletic group that may be sister to all other emydines. Clemmys guttata is problematic and probably related to Terrapene. Based on this phylogeny, and previous molecular work on the group, we suggest the following taxonomic revisions: (1) Clemmys should be restricted to a single species, C. guttata. (2) Calemys should be resurrected for C. muhlenbergii and C. insculpta. (3) Emys should be expanded to include three species: E. orbicularis, E. blandingii, and E. marmorata. Furthermore, our analyses show that neither kinetic-shelled nor akinetic-shelled emydines form monophyletic groups. Therefore, shell kinesis was either independently gained in Emys and Terrapene or secondarily lost in E. marmorata and C. guttata. Parsimony, paleontological evidence, and the multiple origins of shell kinesis in related turtle lineages (especially geoemydines) support the independent origin of plastral kinesis.

  4. Spectral methods for study of the G-protein-coupled receptor rhodopsin: I. Vibrational and electronic spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Struts, A. V.; Barmasov, A. V.; Brown, M. F.

    2015-05-01

    Here we review the application of modern spectral methods for the study of G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) using rhodopsin as a prototype. Because X-ray analysis gives us immobile snapshots of protein conformations, it is imperative to apply spectroscopic methods for elucidating their function: vibrational (Raman, FTIR), electronic (UV-visible absorption, fluorescence) spectroscopies, and magnetic resonance (electron paramagnetic resonance, EPR), and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR). In the first of the two companion articles, we discuss the application of optical spectroscopy for studying rhodopsin in a membrane environment. Information is obtained regarding the time-ordered sequence of events in rhodopsin activation. Isomerization of the chromophore and deprotonation of the retinal Schiff base leads to a structural change of the protein involving the motion of helices H5 and H6 in a pH-dependent process. Information is obtained that is unavailable from X-ray crystallography, which can be combined with spectroscopic studies to achieve a more complete understanding of GPCR function.

  5. Transient Resonance Raman Spectroscopy of a Light-Driven Sodium-Ion-Pump Rhodopsin from Indibacter alkaliphilus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kajimoto, Kousuke; Kikukawa, Takashi; Nakashima, Hiroki; Yamaryo, Haruki; Saito, Yuta; Fujisawa, Tomotsumi; Demura, Makoto; Unno, Masashi

    2017-05-04

    Sodium-ion-pump rhodopsin (NaR) is a microbial rhodopsin that transports Na + during its photocycle. Here we explore the photocycle mechanism of NaR from Indibacter alkaliphilus with transient absorption and transient resonance Raman spectroscopy. The transient absorption data indicate that the photocycle of NaR is K (545 nm) → L (490 nm)/M (420 nm) → O 1 (590 nm) → O 2 (560 nm) → NaR, where the L and M are formed as equilibrium states. The presence of K, L, M, and O intermediates was confirmed by the resonance Raman spectra with 442 and 532 nm excitation. The main component of the transient resonance Raman spectra was due to L which contains a 13-cis retinal protonated Schiff base. The presence of an enhanced hydrogen out-of-plane band as well as its sensitivity to the H/D exchange indicate that the retinal chromophore is distorted near the Schiff base region in L. Moreover, the retinal Schiff base of the L state forms a hydrogen bond that is stronger than that of the dark state. These observations are consistent with a Na + pumping mechanism that involves a proton transfer from the retinal Schiff base to a key aspartate residue (Asp116 in Krokinobacter eikastus rhodopsin 2) in the L/M states.

  6. Venom-related transcripts from Bothrops jararaca tissues provide novel molecular insights into the production and evolution of snake venom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Inácio L M; Bastos, Carolina Mancini Val; Ho, Paulo Lee; Luna, Milene Schmidt; Yamanouye, Norma; Casewell, Nicholas R

    2015-03-01

    Attempts to reconstruct the evolutionary history of snake toxins in the context of their co-option to the venom gland rarely account for nonvenom snake genes that are paralogous to toxins, and which therefore represent important connectors to ancestral genes. In order to reevaluate this process, we conducted a comparative transcriptomic survey on body tissues from a venomous snake. A nonredundant set of 33,000 unigenes (assembled transcripts of reference genes) was independently assembled from six organs of the medically important viperid snake Bothrops jararaca, providing a reference list of 82 full-length toxins from the venom gland and specific products from other tissues, such as pancreatic digestive enzymes. Unigenes were then screened for nontoxin transcripts paralogous to toxins revealing 1) low level coexpression of approximately 20% of toxin genes (e.g., bradykinin-potentiating peptide, C-type lectin, snake venom metalloproteinase, snake venom nerve growth factor) in body tissues, 2) the identity of the closest paralogs to toxin genes in eight classes of toxins, 3) the location and level of paralog expression, indicating that, in general, co-expression occurs in a higher number of tissues and at lower levels than observed for toxin genes, and 4) strong evidence of a toxin gene reverting back to selective expression in a body tissue. In addition, our differential gene expression analyses identify specific cellular processes that make the venom gland a highly specialized secretory tissue. Our results demonstrate that the evolution and production of venom in snakes is a complex process that can only be understood in the context of comparative data from other snake tissues, including the identification of genes paralogous to venom toxins. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  7. Characterization of small HSPs from Anemonia viridis reveals insights into molecular evolution of alpha crystallin genes among cnidarians.

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    Aldo Nicosia

    Full Text Available Gene family encoding small Heat-Shock Proteins (sHSPs containing α-crystallin domain are found both in prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms; however, there is limited knowledge of their evolution. In this study, two small HSP genes termed AvHSP28.6 and AvHSP27, both organized in one intron and two exons, were characterised in the Mediterranean snakelocks anemone Anemonia viridis. The release of the genome sequence of Hydra magnipapillata and Nematostella vectensis enabled a comprehensive study of the molecular evolution of α-crystallin gene family among cnidarians. Most of the H. magnipapillata sHSP genes share the same gene organization described for AvHSP28.6 and AvHSP27, differing from the sHSP genes of N. vectensis which mainly show an intronless architecture. The different genomic organization of sHSPs, the phylogenetic analyses based on protein sequences, and the relationships among Cnidarians, suggest that the A.viridis sHSPs represent the common ancestor from which H. magnipapillata genes directly evolved through segmental genome duplication. Additionally retroposition events may be considered responsible for the divergence of sHSP genes of N. vectensis from A. viridis. Analyses of transcriptional expression profile showed that AvHSP28.6 was constitutively expressed among different tissues from both ectodermal and endodermal layers of the adult sea anemones, under normal physiological conditions and also under different stress condition. Specifically, we profiled the transcriptional activation of AvHSP28.6 after challenges with different abiotic/biotic stresses showing induction by extreme temperatures, heavy metals exposure and immune stimulation. Conversely, no AvHSP27 transcript was detected in such dissected tissues, in adult whole body cDNA library or under stress conditions. Hence, the involvement of AvHSP28.6 gene in the sea anemone defensome is strongly suggested.

  8. Characterization of small HSPs from Anemonia viridis reveals insights into molecular evolution of alpha crystallin genes among cnidarians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicosia, Aldo; Maggio, Teresa; Mazzola, Salvatore; Gianguzza, Fabrizio; Cuttitta, Angela; Costa, Salvatore

    2014-01-01

    Gene family encoding small Heat-Shock Proteins (sHSPs containing α-crystallin domain) are found both in prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms; however, there is limited knowledge of their evolution. In this study, two small HSP genes termed AvHSP28.6 and AvHSP27, both organized in one intron and two exons, were characterised in the Mediterranean snakelocks anemone Anemonia viridis. The release of the genome sequence of Hydra magnipapillata and Nematostella vectensis enabled a comprehensive study of the molecular evolution of α-crystallin gene family among cnidarians. Most of the H. magnipapillata sHSP genes share the same gene organization described for AvHSP28.6 and AvHSP27, differing from the sHSP genes of N. vectensis which mainly show an intronless architecture. The different genomic organization of sHSPs, the phylogenetic analyses based on protein sequences, and the relationships among Cnidarians, suggest that the A.viridis sHSPs represent the common ancestor from which H. magnipapillata genes directly evolved through segmental genome duplication. Additionally retroposition events may be considered responsible for the divergence of sHSP genes of N. vectensis from A. viridis. Analyses of transcriptional expression profile showed that AvHSP28.6 was constitutively expressed among different tissues from both ectodermal and endodermal layers of the adult sea anemones, under normal physiological conditions and also under different stress condition. Specifically, we profiled the transcriptional activation of AvHSP28.6 after challenges with different abiotic/biotic stresses showing induction by extreme temperatures, heavy metals exposure and immune stimulation. Conversely, no AvHSP27 transcript was detected in such dissected tissues, in adult whole body cDNA library or under stress conditions. Hence, the involvement of AvHSP28.6 gene in the sea anemone defensome is strongly suggested.

  9. Insights into the molecular evolution of the PDZ/LIM family and identification of a novel conserved protein motif.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aartjan J W Te Velthuis

    Full Text Available The PDZ and LIM domain-containing protein family is encoded by a diverse group of genes whose phylogeny has currently not been analyzed. In mammals, ten genes are found that encode both a PDZ- and one or several LIM-domains. These genes are: ALP, RIL, Elfin (CLP36, Mystique, Enigma (LMP-1, Enigma homologue (ENH, ZASP (Cypher, Oracle, LMO7 and the two LIM domain kinases (LIMK1 and LIMK2. As conventional alignment and phylogenetic procedures of full-length sequences fell short of elucidating the evolutionary history of these genes, we started to analyze the PDZ and LIM domain sequences themselves. Using information from most sequenced eukaryotic lineages, our phylogenetic analysis is based on full-length cDNA-, EST-derived- and genomic- PDZ and LIM domain sequences of over 25 species, ranging from yeast to humans. Plant and protozoan homologs were not found. Our phylogenetic analysis identifies a number of domain duplication and rearrangement events, and shows a single convergent event during evolution of the PDZ/LIM family. Further, we describe the separation of the ALP and Enigma subfamilies in lower vertebrates and identify a novel consensus motif, which we call 'ALP-like motif' (AM. This motif is highly-conserved between ALP subfamily proteins of diverse organisms. We used here a combinatorial approach to define the relation of the PDZ and LIM domain encoding genes and to reconstruct their phylogeny. This analysis allowed us to classify the PDZ/LIM family and to suggest a meaningful model for the molecular evolution of the diverse gene architectures found in this multi-domain family.

  10. Spinning Gland Transcriptomics from Two Main Clades of Spiders (Order: Araneae) - Insights on Their Molecular, Anatomical and Behavioral Evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prosdocimi, Francisco; Bittencourt, Daniela; da Silva, Felipe Rodrigues; Kirst, Matias; Motta, Paulo C.; Rech, Elibio L.

    2011-01-01

    Characterized by distinctive evolutionary adaptations, spiders provide a comprehensive system for evolutionary and developmental studies of anatomical organs, including silk and venom production. Here we performed cDNA sequencing using massively parallel sequencers (454 GS-FLX Titanium) to generate ∼80,000 reads from the spinning gland of Actinopus spp. (infraorder: Mygalomorphae) and Gasteracantha cancriformis (infraorder: Araneomorphae, Orbiculariae clade). Actinopus spp. retains primitive characteristics on web usage and presents a single undifferentiated spinning gland while the orbiculariae spiders have seven differentiated spinning glands and complex patterns of web usage. MIRA, Celera Assembler and CAP3 software were used to cluster NGS reads for each spider. CAP3 unigenes passed through a pipeline for automatic annotation, classification by biological function, and comparative transcriptomics. Genes related to spider silks were manually curated and analyzed. Although a single spidroin gene family was found in Actinopus spp., a vast repertoire of specialized spider silk proteins was encountered in orbiculariae. Astacin-like metalloproteases (meprin subfamily) were shown to be some of the most sampled unigenes and duplicated gene families in G. cancriformis since its evolutionary split from mygalomorphs. Our results confirm that the evolution of the molecular repertoire of silk proteins was accompanied by the (i) anatomical differentiation of spinning glands and (ii) behavioral complexification in the web usage. Finally, a phylogenetic tree was constructed to cluster most of the known spidroins in gene clades. This is the first large-scale, multi-organism transcriptome for spider spinning glands and a first step into a broad understanding of spider web systems biology and evolution. PMID:21738742

  11. Spinning gland transcriptomics from two main clades of spiders (order: Araneae--insights on their molecular, anatomical and behavioral evolution.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco Prosdocimi

    Full Text Available Characterized by distinctive evolutionary adaptations, spiders provide a comprehensive system for evolutionary and developmental studies of anatomical organs, including silk and venom production. Here we performed cDNA sequencing using massively parallel sequencers (454 GS-FLX Titanium to generate ∼80,000 reads from the spinning gland of Actinopus spp. (infraorder: Mygalomorphae and Gasteracantha cancriformis (infraorder: Araneomorphae, Orbiculariae clade. Actinopus spp. retains primitive characteristics on web usage and presents a single undifferentiated spinning gland while the orbiculariae spiders have seven differentiated spinning glands and complex patterns of web usage. MIRA, Celera Assembler and CAP3 software were used to cluster NGS reads for each spider. CAP3 unigenes passed through a pipeline for automatic annotation, classification by biological function, and comparative transcriptomics. Genes related to spider silks were manually curated and analyzed. Although a single spidroin gene family was found in Actinopus spp., a vast repertoire of specialized spider silk proteins was encountered in orbiculariae. Astacin-like metalloproteases (meprin subfamily were shown to be some of the most sampled unigenes and duplicated gene families in G. cancriformis since its evolutionary split from mygalomorphs. Our results confirm that the evolution of the molecular repertoire of silk proteins was accompanied by the (i anatomical differentiation of spinning glands and (ii behavioral complexification in the web usage. Finally, a phylogenetic tree was constructed to cluster most of the known spidroins in gene clades. This is the first large-scale, multi-organism transcriptome for spider spinning glands and a first step into a broad understanding of spider web systems biology and evolution.

  12. Natural selection and molecular evolution in primate PAX9 gene, a major determinant of tooth development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Tiago V; Salzano, Francisco M; Mostowska, Adrianna; Trzeciak, Wieslaw H; Ruiz-Linares, Andrés; Chies, José A B; Saavedra, Carmen; Nagamachi, Cleusa; Hurtado, Ana M; Hill, Kim; Castro-de-Guerra, Dinorah; Silva-Júnior, Wilson A; Bortolini, Maria-Cátira

    2006-04-11

    Large differences in relation to dental size, number, and morphology among and within modern human populations and between modern humans and other primate species have been observed. Molecular studies have demonstrated that tooth development is under strict genetic control, but, the genetic basis of primate tooth variation remains unknown. The PAX9 gene, which codes for a paired domain-containing transcription factor that plays an essential role in the development of mammal dentition, has been associated with selective tooth agenesis in humans and mice, which mainly involves the posterior teeth. To determine whether this gene is polymorphic in humans, we sequenced approximately 2.1 kb of the entire four-exon region (exons 1, 2, 3 and 4; 1,026 bp) and exon-intron (1.1 kb) boundaries of 86 individuals sampled from Asian, European, and Native American populations. We provided evidence that human PAX9 polymorphisms are limited to exon 3 only and furnished details about the distribution of a mutation there in 350 Polish subjects. To investigate the pattern of selective pressure on exon 3, we sequenced ortholog regions of this exon in four species of New World monkeys and one gorilla. In addition, orthologous sequences of PAX9 available in public databases were also analyzed. Although several differences were identified between humans and other species, our findings support the view that strong purifying selection is acting on PAX9. New World and Old World primate lineages may, however, have different degrees of restriction for changes in this DNA region.

  13. Arbitrarily amplified DNA: New molecular approaches to plant breeding, ecology and evolution

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Caetano-Anolles, G [Department of Biology, University of Oslo, Oslo (Norway)

    2001-11-01

    Several DNA fingerprinting techniques that use arbitrary primers to characterize, scan and tag genomic DNA were optimized and used to study plants and microbial pathogens. The generated arbitrarily amplified DNA (AAD) profiles could be tailored in their complexity and polymorphic content, allowing analysis of closely related organisms, such as vegetatively-propagated horticultural crops or clonal fungal populations. AAD markers were used in cultivar and strain identification, map-based cloning, and marker-assisted breeding, sometimes as sequence-tagged sites. Phenetic analysis using parsimony, cluster, and numerical methods was applied successfully to the identification of genetic relationships in turfgrass species such as bermudagrass, woody plants such as dogwoods, and floricultural species such as petunia and chrysanthemum. AAD profiles were used to measure for the first time a genome-wide mutation rate, directly in a plant. Mutation rates in vegetatively propagated bermudagrass were comparable to those in human, mice, fruit flies, and worms. In combination with established tools used in molecular systematics (e.g. rDNA sequence analysis), AAD markers tracked the introduction of exotic dogwood anthracnose-causing fungi in North America. As part of a breeding effort to combat dogwood diseases, AAD was used in pseudo-testcross mapping of the tree at the intra-specific level. Markers were efficiently generated despite the close relatedness of parental dogwood material. Finally, DNA markers and tags were also generated in soybean, and were used to construct high density maps and walk towards defined genomic regions in the positional cloning of the supernodulation nts-1 symbiotic gene. (author)

  14. Arbitrarily amplified DNA: New molecular approaches to plant breeding, ecology and evolution

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Caetano-Anolles, G.

    2001-01-01

    Several DNA fingerprinting techniques that use arbitrary primers to characterize, scan and tag genomic DNA were optimized and used to study plants and microbial pathogens. The generated arbitrarily amplified DNA (AAD) profiles could be tailored in their complexity and polymorphic content, allowing analysis of closely related organisms, such as vegetatively-propagated horticultural crops or clonal fungal populations. AAD markers were used in cultivar and strain identification, map-based cloning, and marker-assisted breeding, sometimes as sequence-tagged sites. Phenetic analysis using parsimony, cluster, and numerical methods was applied successfully to the identification of genetic relationships in turfgrass species such as bermudagrass, woody plants such as dogwoods, and floricultural species such as petunia and chrysanthemum. AAD profiles were used to measure for the first time a genome-wide mutation rate, directly in a plant. Mutation rates in vegetatively propagated bermudagrass were comparable to those in human, mice, fruit flies, and worms. In combination with established tools used in molecular systematics (e.g. rDNA sequence analysis), AAD markers tracked the introduction of exotic dogwood anthracnose-causing fungi in North America. As part of a breeding effort to combat dogwood diseases, AAD was used in pseudo-testcross mapping of the tree at the intra-specific level. Markers were efficiently generated despite the close relatedness of parental dogwood material. Finally, DNA markers and tags were also generated in soybean, and were used to construct high density maps and walk towards defined genomic regions in the positional cloning of the supernodulation nts-1 symbiotic gene. (author)

  15. Molecular evolution of the nicotinic acid requirement within the Shigella/EIEC pathotype.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Martino, Maria Letizia; Fioravanti, Rosa; Barbabella, Giada; Prosseda, Gianni; Colonna, Bianca; Casalino, Mariassunta

    2013-12-01

    Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) is a crucial cofactor in several anabolic and catabolic reactions. NAD derives from quinolinic acid (QUIN) which in Escherichia coli is obtained through a pyridine salvage pathway or a de novo synthesis pathway. In the latter case, two enzymes, L-aspartate oxidase (NadB) and quinolinate synthase (NadA), are required for the synthesis of QUIN. In contrast to its E. coli ancestor, Shigella spp., the causative agent of bacillary dissentery, lacks the de novo pathway and strictly requires nicotinic acid for growth (Nic⁻ phenotype). This phenotype depends on the silencing of the nadB and nadA genes and its pathoadaptive nature is suggested by the observation that QUIN attenuates the Shigella invasive process. Shigella shares the pathogenicity mechanism with enteronvasive E. coli (EIEC), a group of pathogenic E. coli. On the basis of this similarity EIEC and Shigella have been grouped into a single E. coli pathotype. However EIEC strains do not constitute a homogeneous group and do not possess the complete set of characters that define Shigella strains. In this work we have analysed thirteen EIEC strains belonging to different serotypes and originating from different geographic areas. We show that, in contrast to Shigella, only some EIEC strains require nicotinic acid for growth in minimal medium. Moreover, by studying the emergence of the Nic⁻ phenotype in all serotypes of S. flexneri, as well as in S. sonnei and S. dysenteriae, we describe which molecular rearrangements occurred and which mutations are responsible for the inactivation of the nadA and nadB genes. Our data confirm that the genome of Shigella is extremely dynamic and support the hypothesis that EIEC might reflect an earlier stage of the pathoadaptation process undergone by Shigella. Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier GmbH.

  16. Molecular Evolution and Functional Diversification of Replication Protein A1 in Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aklilu, Behailu B.; Culligan, Kevin M.

    2016-01-01

    Replication protein A (RPA) is a heterotrimeric, single-stranded DNA binding complex required for eukaryotic DNA replication, repair, and recombination. RPA is composed of three subunits, RPA1, RPA2, and RPA3. In contrast to single RPA subunit genes generally found in animals and yeast, plants encode multiple paralogs of RPA subunits, suggesting subfunctionalization. Genetic analysis demonstrates that five Arabidopsis thaliana RPA1 paralogs (RPA1A to RPA1E) have unique and overlapping functions in DNA replication, repair, and meiosis. We hypothesize here that RPA1 subfunctionalities will be reflected in major structural and sequence differences among the paralogs. To address this, we analyzed amino acid and nucleotide sequences of RPA1 paralogs from 25 complete genomes representing a wide spectrum of plants and unicellular green algae. We find here that the plant RPA1 gene family is divided into three general groups termed RPA1A, RPA1B, and RPA1C, which likely arose from two progenitor groups in unicellular green algae. In the family Brassicaceae the RPA1B and RPA1C groups have further expanded to include two unique sub-functional paralogs RPA1D and RPA1E, respectively. In addition, RPA1 groups have unique domains, motifs, cis-elements, gene expression profiles, and pattern of conservation that are consistent with proposed functions in monocot and dicot species, including a novel C-terminal zinc-finger domain found only in plant RPA1C-like sequences. These results allow for improved prediction of RPA1 subunit functions in newly sequenced plant genomes, and potentially provide a unique molecular tool to improve classification of Brassicaceae species. PMID:26858742

  17. Molecular evolution of the hyperthermophilic archaea of the Pyrococcus genus: analysis of adaptation to different environmental conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Afonnikov Dmitry A

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Prokaryotic microorganisms are able to survive and proliferate in severe environmental conditions. The increasing number of complete sequences of prokaryotic genomes has provided the basis for studying the molecular mechanisms of their adaptation at the genomic level. We apply here a computer-based approach to compare the genomes and proteomes from P. furiosus, P. horikoshii, and P. abyssi to identify features of their molecular evolution related to adaptation strategy to diverse environmental conditions. Results Phylogenetic analysis of rRNA genes from 26 Pyrococcus strains suggested that the divergence of P. furiosus, P. horikoshii and P. abyssi might have occurred from ancestral deep-sea organisms. It was demonstrated that the function of genes that have been subject to positive Darwinian selection is closely related to abiotic and biotic conditions to which archaea managed to become adapted. Divergence of the P. furiosus archaea might have been due to loss of some genes involved in cell motility or signal transduction, and/or to evolution under positive selection of the genes for translation machinery. In the course of P. horikoshii divergence, positive selection was found to operate mainly on the transcription machinery; divergence of P. abyssi was related with positive selection for the genes mainly involved in inorganic ion transport. Analysis of radical amino acid replacement rate in evolving P. furiosus, P. horikoshii and P. abyssi showed that the fixation rate was higher for radical substitutions relative to the volume of amino acid side-chain. Conclusions The current results give due credit to the important role of hydrostatic pressure as a cause of variability in the P. furiosus, P. horikoshii and P. abyssi genomes evolving in different habitats. Nevertheless, adaptation to pressure does not appear to be the sole factor ensuring adaptation to environment. For example, at the stage of the divergence of P

  18. Molecular variation in AVP and AVPR1a in New World monkeys (Primates, Platyrrhini: evolution and implications for social monogamy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dongren Ren

    Full Text Available The neurohypophysial hormone arginine vasopressin (AVP plays important roles in fluid regulation and vascular resistance. Differences in AVP receptor expression, particularly mediated through variation in the noncoding promoter region of the primary receptor for AVP (AVPR1a, may play a role in social phenotypes, particularly social monogamy, in rodents and humans. Among primates, social monogamy is rare, but is common among New World monkeys (NWM. AVP is a nonapeptide and generally conserved among eutherian mammals, although a recent paper demonstrated that some NWM species possess a novel form of the related neuropeptide hormone, oxytocin. We therefore characterized variation in the AVP and AVPR1a genes in 22 species representing every genus in the three major platyrrhine families (Cebidae, Atelidae and Pitheciidae. For AVP, a total of 16 synonymous substitutions were detected in 15 NWM species. No non-synonymous substitutions were noted, hence, AVP is conserved in NWM. By contrast, relative to the human AVPR1a, 66 predicted amino acids (AA substitutions were identified in NWM. The AVPR1a N-terminus (ligand binding domain, third intracellular (G-protein binding domain, and C-terminus were variable among species. Complex evolution of AVPR1a is also apparent in NWM. A molecular phylogenetic tree inferred from AVPR1a coding sequences revealed some consensus taxonomic separation by families, but also a mixed group composed of genera from all three families. The overall dN/dS ratio of AVPR1a was 0.11, but signals of positive selection in distinct AVPR1a regions were observed, including the N-terminus, in which we identified six potential positive selection sites. AA substitutions at positions 241, 319, 399 and 409 occurred uniquely in marmosets and tamarins. Our results enhance the appreciation of genetic diversity in the mammalian AVP/AVPR1a system, and set the stage for molecular modeling of the neurohypophyseal hormones and social behavior in

  19. Convergent Evolution of Hemoglobin Function in High-Altitude Andean Waterfowl Involves Limited Parallelism at the Molecular Sequence Level.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chandrasekhar Natarajan

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available A fundamental question in evolutionary genetics concerns the extent to which adaptive phenotypic convergence is attributable to convergent or parallel changes at the molecular sequence level. Here we report a comparative analysis of hemoglobin (Hb function in eight phylogenetically replicated pairs of high- and low-altitude waterfowl taxa to test for convergence in the oxygenation properties of Hb, and to assess the extent to which convergence in biochemical phenotype is attributable to repeated amino acid replacements. Functional experiments on native Hb variants and protein engineering experiments based on site-directed mutagenesis revealed the phenotypic effects of specific amino acid replacements that were responsible for convergent increases in Hb-O2 affinity in multiple high-altitude taxa. In six of the eight taxon pairs, high-altitude taxa evolved derived increases in Hb-O2 affinity that were caused by a combination of unique replacements, parallel replacements (involving identical-by-state variants with independent mutational origins in different lineages, and collateral replacements (involving shared, identical-by-descent variants derived via introgressive hybridization. In genome scans of nucleotide differentiation involving high- and low-altitude populations of three separate species, function-altering amino acid polymorphisms in the globin genes emerged as highly significant outliers, providing independent evidence for adaptive divergence in Hb function. The experimental results demonstrate that convergent changes in protein function can occur through multiple historical paths, and can involve multiple possible mutations. Most cases of convergence in Hb function did not involve parallel substitutions and most parallel substitutions did not affect Hb-O2 affinity, indicating that the repeatability of phenotypic evolution does not require parallelism at the molecular level.

  20. New insights into Trypanosoma cruzi evolution, genotyping and molecular diagnostics from satellite DNA sequence analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan C Ramírez

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Trypanosoma cruzi has been subdivided into seven Discrete Typing Units (DTUs, TcI-TcVI and Tcbat. Two major evolutionary models have been proposed to explain the origin of hybrid lineages, but while it is widely accepted that TcV and TcVI are the result of genetic exchange between TcII and TcIII strains, the origin of TcIII and TcIV is still a matter of debate. T. cruzi satellite DNA (SatDNA, comprised of 195 bp units organized in tandem repeats, from both TcV and TcVI stocks were found to have SatDNA copies type TcI and TcII; whereas contradictory results were observed for TcIII stocks and no TcIV sequence has been analyzed yet. Herein, we have gone deeper into this matter analyzing 335 distinct SatDNA sequences from 19 T. cruzi stocks representative of DTUs TcI-TcVI for phylogenetic inference. Bayesian phylogenetic tree showed that all sequences were grouped in three major clusters, which corresponded to sequences from DTUs TcI/III, TcII and TcIV; whereas TcV and TcVI stocks had two sets of sequences distributed into TcI/III and TcII clusters. As expected, the lowest genetic distances were found between TcI and TcIII, and between TcV and TcVI sequences; whereas the highest ones were observed between TcII and TcI/III, and among TcIV sequences and those from the remaining DTUs. In addition, signature patterns associated to specific T. cruzi lineages were identified and new primers that improved SatDNA-based qPCR sensitivity were designed. Our findings support the theory that TcIII is not the result of a hybridization event between TcI and TcII, and that TcIV had an independent origin from the other DTUs, contributing to clarifying the evolutionary history of T. cruzi lineages. Moreover, this work opens the possibility of typing samples from Chagas disease patients with low parasitic loads and improving molecular diagnostic methods of T. cruzi infection based on SatDNA sequence amplification.

  1. New insights into Trypanosoma cruzi evolution, genotyping and molecular diagnostics from satellite DNA sequence analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramírez, Juan C; Torres, Carolina; Curto, María de Los A; Schijman, Alejandro G

    2017-12-01

    Trypanosoma cruzi has been subdivided into seven Discrete Typing Units (DTUs), TcI-TcVI and Tcbat. Two major evolutionary models have been proposed to explain the origin of hybrid lineages, but while it is widely accepted that TcV and TcVI are the result of genetic exchange between TcII and TcIII strains, the origin of TcIII and TcIV is still a matter of debate. T. cruzi satellite DNA (SatDNA), comprised of 195 bp units organized in tandem repeats, from both TcV and TcVI stocks were found to have SatDNA copies type TcI and TcII; whereas contradictory results were observed for TcIII stocks and no TcIV sequence has been analyzed yet. Herein, we have gone deeper into this matter analyzing 335 distinct SatDNA sequences from 19 T. cruzi stocks representative of DTUs TcI-TcVI for phylogenetic inference. Bayesian phylogenetic tree showed that all sequences were grouped in three major clusters, which corresponded to sequences from DTUs TcI/III, TcII and TcIV; whereas TcV and TcVI stocks had two sets of sequences distributed into TcI/III and TcII clusters. As expected, the lowest genetic distances were found between TcI and TcIII, and between TcV and TcVI sequences; whereas the highest ones were observed between TcII and TcI/III, and among TcIV sequences and those from the remaining DTUs. In addition, signature patterns associated to specific T. cruzi lineages were identified and new primers that improved SatDNA-based qPCR sensitivity were designed. Our findings support the theory that TcIII is not the result of a hybridization event between TcI and TcII, and that TcIV had an independent origin from the other DTUs, contributing to clarifying the evolutionary history of T. cruzi lineages. Moreover, this work opens the possibility of typing samples from Chagas disease patients with low parasitic loads and improving molecular diagnostic methods of T. cruzi infection based on SatDNA sequence amplification.

  2. Miscanthus plants used as an alternative biofuel material. The basic studies on ecology and molecular evolution

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chou, Chang-Hung [Graduate Institute of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, College of Life Sciences, China Medical University, Taichung 404 (China)

    2009-08-15

    Miscanthus Anderss, widely distributed in Asia and Pacific Islands, possesses 20 species. Of which 8 species and 1 variety were recorded in Chinese Mainland; 6 species and 1 variety found in Japan; 5 species and 3 varieties distributed in Taiwan; 3 species documented in the Philippines; and rest of species have been recorded in Jawa, eastern Himalaya, and Sikkim. The plant is a C{sub 4} perennial grass with high productivity of biomass. In the 19th and early 20th centuries in Taiwan, Miscanthus was a very important crop used for forage grass, clothing, and shelter, etc. The relatively high germination, and high yield of biomass made the plant available for people of Taiwan including aboriginal. The taxonomic study of Miscanthus plants was much done by several scientists, and its ecological study has been only taken by the present author since 1972. Chou and his associates paid a great attention to elucidate the mechanism of dominance of Miscanthus vegetation and found that allelopathy plays an important role. In addition, the population biology of Miscanthus taxa by using polyacrylamide gel electrophoreses technique to examine the patterns of peroxidase and esterase among populations (over 100) of Miscanthus in Taiwan were conducted. They also elucidated the phylogenetic relationship among species and varieties in Taiwan. Chou and Ueng proposed an evolutionary trend of Miscanthus species, indicating that the Miscanthus sinensis was assumed to be the origin of Miscanthus Anderss, which evolved to M. sinensis var. formosana, and M. sinensis var. flavidus, and M. sinensis var. transmorrisonensis, and Miscanthus floridulus was thought to be an out group of M. sinensis complex. Moreover, molecular phylogeny was attempted to clarify the population heterogeneity of M. sinensis complex, resulting in a substantial information. It would be available for making hybridization between Miscanthus species and its related species, such as Saccharum (sugar cane) spp. which is a

  3. Molecular dynamics study of radiation damage and microstructure evolution of zigzag single-walled carbon nanotubes under carbon ion incidence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Huan; Tang, Xiaobin; Chen, Feida; Huang, Hai; Liu, Jian; Chen, Da

    2016-07-01

    The radiation damage and microstructure evolution of different zigzag single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) were investigated under incident carbon ion by molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. The radiation damage of SWCNTs under incident carbon ion with energy ranging from 25 eV to 1 keV at 300 K showed many differences at different incident sites, and the defect production increased to the maximum value with the increase in incident ion energy, and slightly decreased but stayed fairly stable within the majority of the energy range. The maximum damage of SWCNTs appeared when the incident ion energy reached 200 eV and the level of damage was directly proportional to incident ion fluence. The radiation damage was also studied at 100 K and 700 K and the defect production decreased distinctly with rising temperature because radiation-induced defects would anneal and recombine by saturating dangling bonds and reconstructing carbon network at the higher temperature. Furthermore, the stability of a large-diameter tube surpassed that of a thin one under the same radiation environments.

  4. Molecular evolution of the actin-like MreB protein gene family in wall-less bacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ku, Chuan; Lo, Wen-Sui; Kuo, Chih-Horng

    2014-04-18

    The mreB gene family encodes actin-like proteins that determine cell shape by directing cell wall synthesis and often exists in one to three copies in the genomes of non-spherical bacteria. Intriguingly, while most wall-less bacteria do not have this gene, five to seven mreB homologs are found in Spiroplasma and Haloplasma, which are both characterized by cell contractility. To investigate the molecular evolution of this gene family in wall-less bacteria, we sampled the available genome sequences from these two genera and other related lineages for comparative analysis. The gene phylogenies indicated that the mreB homologs in Haloplasma are more closely related to those in Firmicutes, whereas those in Spiroplasma form a separate clade. This finding suggests that the gene family expansions in these two lineages are the results of independent ancient duplications. Moreover, the Spiroplasma mreB homologs can be classified into five clades, of which the genomic positions are largely conserved. The inference of gene gains and losses suggests that there has been an overall trend to retain only one homolog from each of the five mreB clades in the evolutionary history of Spiroplasma. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Genetic diversity and molecular evolution of Naga King Chili inferred from internal transcribed spacer sequence of nuclear ribosomal DNA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kehie, Mechuselie; Kumaria, Suman; Devi, Khumuckcham Sangeeta; Tandon, Pramod

    2016-02-01

    Sequences of the Internal Transcribed Spacer (ITS1-5.8S-ITS2) of nuclear ribosomal DNAs were explored to study the genetic diversity and molecular evolution of Naga King Chili. Our study indicated the occurrence of nucleotide polymorphism and haplotypic diversity in the ITS regions. The present study demonstrated that the variability of ITS1 with respect to nucleotide diversity and sequence polymorphism exceeded that of ITS2. Sequence analysis of 5.8S gene revealed a much conserved region in all the accessions of Naga King Chili. However, strong phylogenetic information of this species is the distinct 13 bp deletion in the 5.8S gene which discriminated Naga King Chili from the rest of the Capsicum sp. Neutrality test results implied a neutral variation, and population seems to be evolving at drift-mutation equilibrium and free from directed selection pressure. Furthermore, mismatch analysis showed multimodal curve indicating a demographic equilibrium. Phylogenetic relationships revealed by Median Joining Network (MJN) analysis denoted a clear discrimination of Naga King Chili from its closest sister species (Capsicum chinense and Capsicum frutescens). The absence of star-like network of haplotypes suggested an ancient population expansion of this chili.

  6. Evolution of spirals during molecular beam epitaxy of GaN on 6H-SiC(0001)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cui, Y.; Li, L.

    2002-01-01

    Evolution of spirals during molecular beam epitaxy growth of GaN films on 6H-SiC(0001) was studied by in situ scanning tunneling microscopy. It was found that dislocations emerge at the film surface, creating straight steps with orientation along directions with a density of 10 10 cm -2 for 40-nm-thick films. During subsequent growth, these straight steps wind around dislocations and develop into spirals with a density of 10 9 cm -2 for 100-nm-thick films. The spirals can be classified into three types: single arm, interlocking double arm, and closed loop. The first two types originate from steps with one end pinned, and the third type results from steps with both ends pinned. At film thickness larger than 200 nm, these spirals further evolve into spiral mounds with a density of 10 7 cm -2 . Based on the Burton, Cabrera, and Frank theory, a model is proposed to explain the formation of different types of spirals and the reduction of their densities

  7. Structural properties and growth evolution of diamond-like carbon films with different incident energies: A molecular dynamics study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li, Xiaowei; Ke, Peiling; Zheng, He; Wang, Aiying

    2013-01-01

    Structural properties and growth evolution of diamond-like carbon (DLC) films with different incident energies were investigated systematically by the molecular dynamics simulation using a Tersoff interatomic potential for carbon-carbon interaction. The results revealed that the density, sp 3 fraction and residual compressive stress as a function of incident energy increased firstly and then decreased; when the incident energy was 70 eV/atom, the density could reach to 3.0 g/cm 3 with the maximal compressive stress of 15.5 GPa. Structure analysis indicated that the deviation of both bond angles and lengths from the equilibrium position led to the generation of a large residual stress, while the high compressive stress mainly attributed to the decrease of both bond angles and lengths among carbon atoms. The growth of DLC films underwent a formation process of “Line-Net” structure accompanied with the interaction of many atomic motion mechanisms, and the “Point” stage was only found for DLC films with low incident energy.

  8. Green's function-stochastic methods framework for probing nonlinear evolution problems: Burger's equation, the nonlinear Schroedinger's equation, and hydrodynamic organization of near-molecular-scale vorticity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Keanini, R.G.

    2011-01-01

    Research highlights: → Systematic approach for physically probing nonlinear and random evolution problems. → Evolution of vortex sheets corresponds to evolution of an Ornstein-Uhlenbeck process. → Organization of near-molecular scale vorticity mediated by hydrodynamic modes. → Framework allows calculation of vorticity evolution within random strain fields. - Abstract: A framework which combines Green's function (GF) methods and techniques from the theory of stochastic processes is proposed for tackling nonlinear evolution problems. The framework, established by a series of easy-to-derive equivalences between Green's function and stochastic representative solutions of linear drift-diffusion problems, provides a flexible structure within which nonlinear evolution problems can be analyzed and physically probed. As a preliminary test bed, two canonical, nonlinear evolution problems - Burgers' equation and the nonlinear Schroedinger's equation - are first treated. In the first case, the framework provides a rigorous, probabilistic derivation of the well known Cole-Hopf ansatz. Likewise, in the second, the machinery allows systematic recovery of a known soliton solution. The framework is then applied to a fairly extensive exploration of physical features underlying evolution of randomly stretched and advected Burger's vortex sheets. Here, the governing vorticity equation corresponds to the Fokker-Planck equation of an Ornstein-Uhlenbeck process, a correspondence that motivates an investigation of sub-sheet vorticity evolution and organization. Under the assumption that weak hydrodynamic fluctuations organize disordered, near-molecular-scale, sub-sheet vorticity, it is shown that these modes consist of two weakly damped counter-propagating cross-sheet acoustic modes, a diffusive cross-sheet shear mode, and a diffusive cross-sheet entropy mode. Once a consistent picture of in-sheet vorticity evolution is established, a number of analytical results, describing the

  9. Pattern of retinal morphological and functional decay in a light-inducible, rhodopsin mutant mouse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gargini, Claudia; Novelli, Elena; Piano, Ilaria; Biagioni, Martina; Strettoi, Enrica

    2017-07-18

    Hallmarks of Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP), a family of genetic diseases, are a typical rod-cone-degeneration with initial night blindness and loss of peripheral vision, followed by decreased daylight sight and progressive visual acuity loss up to legal blindness. Great heterogeneity in nature and function of mutated genes, variety of mutations for each of them, variability in phenotypic appearance and transmission modality contribute to make RP a still incurable disease. Translational research relies on appropriate animal models mimicking the genetic and phenotypic diversity of the human pathology. Here, we provide a systematic, morphological and functional analysis of Rho Tvrm4 /Rho + rhodopsin mutant mice, originally described in 2010 and portraying several features of common forms of autosomal dominant RP caused by gain-of-function mutations. These mice undergo photoreceptor degeneration only when exposed briefly to strong, white light and allow controlled timing of induction of rod and cone death, which therefore can be elicited in adult animals, as observed in human RP. The option to control severity and retinal extent of the phenotype by regulating intensity and duration of the inducing light opens possibilities to exploit this model for multiple experimental purposes. Altogether, the unique features of this mutant make it an excellent resource for retinal degeneration research.

  10. Light activation of one rhodopsin molecule causes the phosphorylation of hundreds of others. A reaction observed in electropermeabilized frog rod outer segments exposed to dim illumination

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Binder, B.M.; Biernbaum, M.S.; Bownds, M.D.

    1990-01-01

    A rhodopsin phosphorylation reaction that occurs with high-gain is observed if measurements are made in electropermeabilized frog rod outer segments (ROS) stimulated by a dim flash of light in the operating range of the photoreceptor. Flashes of light exciting 1000 or fewer of the 3 x 10(9) rhodopsins present/ROS results in the incorporation of 1400 phosphates from ATP into the rhodopsin pool for each excited rhodopsin (Rho*). This amplification decreases with increasing light intensity, falling most sharply after each disk has absorbed one photon. The high-gain reaction is lost if the ROS are broken into vesicles by shearing, leaving a low-gain rhodopsin phosphorylation characterized in previous studies using brighter illumination. The high-gain but not the low-gain phosphorylation appears to be regulated by G-protein and by calcium levels in the range over which intracellular calcium changes when rod photoreceptors are illuminated. Kinetic measurements made on the phosphorylation observed at higher light intensities shows that it initially occurs rapidly enough for a role in terminating the photoresponse. The high-gain phosphorylation observed at lower light intensities may play a global role in regulating light-adaptation of the rod photoreceptor, and its existence suggests that a search for a similar high-gain modification in systems using the homologous beta-adrenergic or muscarinic acetylcholine receptors might be rewarding

  11. Molecular evolution of the two-component system BvgAS involved in virulence regulation in Bordetella.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julien Herrou

    Full Text Available The whooping cough agent Bordetella pertussis is closely related to Bordetella bronchiseptica, which is responsible for chronic respiratory infections in various mammals and is occasionally found in humans, and to Bordetella parapertussis, one lineage of which causes mild whooping cough in humans and the other ovine respiratory infections. All three species produce similar sets of virulence factors that are co-regulated by the two-component system BvgAS. We characterized the molecular diversity of BvgAS in Bordetella by sequencing the two genes from a large number of diverse isolates. The response regulator BvgA is virtually invariant, indicating strong functional constraints. In contrast, the multi-domain sensor kinase BvgS has evolved into two different types. The pertussis type is found in B. pertussis and in a lineage of essentially human-associated B. bronchiseptica, while the bronchiseptica type is associated with the majority of B. bronchiseptica and both ovine and human B. parapertussis. BvgS is monomorphic in B. pertussis, suggesting optimal adaptation or a recent population bottleneck. The degree of diversity of the bronchiseptica type BvgS is markedly different between domains, indicating distinct evolutionary pressures. Thus, absolute conservation of the putative solute-binding cavities of the two periplasmic Venus Fly Trap (VFT domains suggests that common signals are perceived in all three species, while the external surfaces of these domains vary more extensively. Co-evolution of the surfaces of the two VFT domains in each type and domain swapping experiments indicate that signal transduction in the periplasmic region may be type-specific. The two distinct evolutionary solutions for BvgS confirm that B. pertussis has emerged from a specific B. bronchiseptica lineage. The invariant regions of BvgS point to essential parts for its molecular mechanism, while the variable regions may indicate adaptations to different lifestyles. The

  12. Comparative transcriptome resources of two Dysosma species (Berberidaceae) and molecular evolution of the CYP719A gene in Podophylloideae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mao, Yunrui; Zhang, Yonghua; Xu, Chuan; Qiu, Yingxiong

    2016-01-01

    Dysosma species (Berberidaceae, Podophylloideae) are of great medicinal pharmacogenetic importance and used as model systems to study the drivers and mechanisms of species diversification of temperate plants in East Asia. Recently, we have sequenced the transcriptome of the low-elevation D. versipellis. In this study, we sequenced the transcriptome of the high-elevation D. aurantiocaulis and used comparative genomic approaches to investigate the transcriptome evolution of the two species. We retrieved 53,929 unigenes from D. aurantiocaulis by de novo transcriptome assemblies using the Illumina HiSeq 2000 platform. Comparing the transcriptomes of both species, we identified 4593 orthologs. Estimation of Ka/Ks ratios for 3126 orthologs revealed that none had a Ka/Ks significantly greater than 1, whereas 1273 (Ka/Ks < 0.5, P < 0.05) were inferred to be under purifying selection. A total of 51 primer pairs were successfully designed from 461 EST-SSRs contained in 4593 orthologs. Marker validation assay revealed that 26 (51%) and 41 (80.4%) produced clear fragments with the expected sizes in all Podophylloideae species. Specifically, 19 different sequences of CYP719A were identified from PCR-amplified genomic DNA of all 12 species of Podophylloideae using primers designed from the assembled transcripts. The data further indicated that CYP719A was likely subject to strong selective constraints maintaining only one copy per genome. In Dysosma, there was relaxed purifying selection or more positive selection for high-elevation species. Overall, this study has generated a wealth of molecular resources potentially useful for pharmacogenetic and evolutionary studies in Dysosma and allied taxa. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  13. Molecular evolution and the role of oxidative stress in the expansion and functional diversification of cytosolic glutathione transferases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vasconcelos Vítor

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Cytosolic glutathione transferases (cGST are a large group of ubiquitous enzymes involved in detoxification and are well known for their undesired side effects during chemotherapy. In this work we have performed thorough phylogenetic analyses to understand the various aspects of the evolution and functional diversification of cGSTs. Furthermore, we assessed plausible correlations between gene duplication and substrate specificity of gene paralogs in humans and selected species, notably in mammalian enzymes and their natural substrates. Results We present a molecular phylogeny of cytosolic GSTs that shows that several classes of cGSTs are more ubiquitous and thus have an older ancestry than previously thought. Furthermore, we found that positive selection is implicated in the diversification of cGSTs. The number of duplicate genes per class is generally higher for groups of enzymes that metabolize products of oxidative damage. Conclusions 1 Protection against oxidative stress seems to be the major driver of positive selection in mammalian cGSTs, explaining the overall expansion pattern of this subfamily; 2 Given the functional redundancy of GSTs that metabolize xenobiotic chemicals, we would expect the loss of gene duplicates, but by contrast we observed a gene expansion of this family, which likely has been favored by: i the diversification of endogenous substrates; ii differential tissue expression; and iii increased specificity for a particular molecule; 3 The increased availability of sequence data from diversified taxa is likely to continue to improve our understanding of the early origin of the different cGST classes.

  14. Agonists and partial agonists of rhodopsin: retinal polyene methylation affects receptor activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vogel, Reiner; Lüdeke, Steffen; Siebert, Friedrich; Sakmar, Thomas P; Hirshfeld, Amiram; Sheves, Mordechai

    2006-02-14

    Using Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) difference spectroscopy, we have studied the impact of sites and extent of methylation of the retinal polyene with respect to position and thermodynamic parameters of the conformational equilibrium between the Meta I and Meta II photoproducts of rhodopsin. Deletion of methyl groups to form 9-demethyl and 13-demethyl analogues, as well as addition of a methyl group at C10 or C12, shifted the Meta I/Meta II equilibrium toward Meta I, such that the retinal analogues behaved like partial agonists. This equilibrium shift resulted from an apparent reduction of the entropy gain of the transition of up to 65%, which was only partially offset by a concomitant reduction of the enthalpy increase. The analogues produced Meta II photoproducts with relatively small alterations, while their Meta I states were significantly altered, which accounted for the aberrant transitions to Meta II. Addition of a methyl group at C14 influenced the thermodynamic parameters but had little impact on the position of the Meta I/Meta II equilibrium. Neutralization of the residue 134 in the E134Q opsin mutant increased the Meta II content of the 13-demethyl analogue, but not of the 9-demethyl analogue, indicating a severe impairment of the allosteric coupling between the conserved cytoplasmic ERY motif involved in proton uptake and the Schiff base/Glu 113 microdomain in the 9-demethyl analogue. The 9-methyl group appears therefore essential for the correct positioning of retinal to link protonation of the cytoplasmic motif with protonation of Glu 113 during receptor activation.

  15. Photoreceptor Differentiation following Transplantation of Allogeneic Retinal Progenitor Cells to the Dystrophic Rhodopsin Pro347Leu Transgenic Pig

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Klassen, H; Kiilgaard, Jens Folke; Warfvinge, K

    2012-01-01

    Purpose. Transplantation of stem, progenitor, or precursor cells has resulted in photoreceptor replacement and evidence of functional efficacy in rodent models of retinal degeneration. Ongoing work has been directed toward the replication of these results in a large animal model, namely, the pig....... Methods. Retinal progenitor cells were derived from the neural retina of GFP-transgenic pigs and transplanted to the subretinal space of rhodopsin Pro347Leu-transgenic allorecipients, in the early stage of the degeneration and the absence of immune suppression. Results. Results confirm the survival...

  16. Molecular evolution of the endosperm starch synthesis pathway genes in rice (Oryza sativa L.) and its wild ancestor, O. rufipogon L.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Guoqin; Olsen, Kenneth M; Schaal, Barbara A

    2011-01-01

    The evolution of metabolic pathways is a fundamental but poorly understood aspect of evolutionary change. One approach for understanding the complexity of pathway evolution is to examine the molecular evolution of genes that together comprise an integrated metabolic pathway. The rice endosperm starch biosynthetic pathway is one of the most thoroughly characterized metabolic pathways in plants, and starch is a trait that has evolved in response to strong selection during rice domestication. In this study, we have examined six key genes (AGPL2, AGPS2b, SSIIa, SBEIIb, GBSSI, ISA1) in the rice endosperm starch biosynthesis pathway to investigate the evolution of these genes before and after rice domestication. Genome-wide sequence tagged sites data were used as a neutral reference to overcome the problems of detecting selection in species with complex demographic histories such as rice. Five variety groups of Oryza sativa (aus, indica, tropical japonica, temperate japonica, aromatic) and its wild ancestor (O. rufipogon) were sampled. Our results showed evidence of purifying selection at AGPL2 in O. rufipogon and strong evidence of positive selection at GBSSI in temperate japonica and tropical japonica varieties and at GBSSI and SBEIIb in aromatic varieties. All the other genes showed a pattern consistent with neutral evolution in both cultivated rice and its wild ancestor. These results indicate the important role of positive selection in the evolution of starch genes during rice domestication. We discuss the role of SBEIIb and GBSSI in the evolution of starch quality during rice domestication and the power and limitation of detecting selection using genome-wide data as a neutral reference.

  17. A review of the evolution of viviparity in squamate reptiles: the past, present and future role of molecular biology and genomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murphy, Bridget F; Thompson, Michael B

    2011-07-01

    Squamate reptiles (lizards and snakes) offer a unique model system for testing hypotheses about the evolutionary transition from oviparity (egg-laying) to viviparity (live-bearing) in amniote vertebrates. The evolution of squamate viviparity has occurred remarkably frequently (>108 times) and has resulted in major changes in reproductive physiology. Such frequent changes in reproductive strategy pose two questions: (1) what are the molecular mechanisms responsible for the evolution of squamate viviparity? (2) Are these molecular mechanisms the same for separate origins of viviparity? Molecular approaches, such as RT-PCR, in situ hybridisation, Western blotting and immunofluorescence, have been invaluable for identifying genes and proteins that are involved in squamate placental development, materno-foetal immunotolerance, placental transport, placental angiogenesis, hormone synthesis and hormone receptor expression. However, the candidate-gene or -protein approach that has been used until now does not allow for de novo gene/protein discovery; results to date suggest that the reproductive physiologies of mammals and squamate reptiles are very similar, but this conclusion may simply be due to a limited capacity to study the subset of genes and proteins that are unique to reptiles. Progress has also been slowed by the lack of appropriate molecular and genomic resources for squamate reptiles. The advent of next-generation sequencing provides a relatively inexpensive way to conduct rapid high-throughput sequencing of genomes and transcriptomes. We discuss the potential use of next-generation sequencing technologies to analyse differences in gene expression between oviparous and viviparous squamates, provide important sequence information for reptiles, and generate testable hypotheses for the evolution of viviparity.

  18. RNAdualPF: software to compute the dual partition function with sample applications in molecular evolution theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Martin, Juan Antonio; Bayegan, Amir H; Dotu, Ivan; Clote, Peter

    2016-10-19

    -content. Using different inverse folding software, another group had earlier shown that pre-miRNA is mutationally robust, even controlling for compositional bias. Our opposite conclusion suggests a cautionary note that computationally based insights into molecular evolution may heavily depend on the software used. C/C++-software for RNAdualPF is available at http://bioinformatics.bc.edu/clotelab/RNAdualPF .

  19. Evidence of molecular evolution driven by recombination events influencing tropism in a novel human adenovirus that causes epidemic keratoconjunctivitis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael P Walsh

    2009-06-01

    the first genomic, bioinformatic, and biological descriptions of the molecular evolution events engendering an emerging pathogenic adenovirus.

  20. Chloroplast DNA analysis of Tunisian cork oak populations (Quercus suber L.): sequence variations and molecular evolution of the trnL (UAA)-trnF (GAA) region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdessamad, A; Baraket, G; Sakka, H; Ammari, Y; Ksontini, M; Hannachi, A Salhi

    2016-10-24

    Sequences of the trnL-trnF spacer and combined trnL-trnF region in chloroplast DNA of cork oak (Quercus suber L.) were analyzed to detect polymorphisms and to elucidate molecular evolution and demographic history. The aligned sequences varied in length and nucleotide composition. The overall ratio of transition/transversion (ti/tv) of 0.724 for the intergenic spacer and 0.258 for the pooled sequences were estimated, and indicated that transversions are more frequent than transitions. The molecular evolution and demographic history of Q. suber were investigated. Neutrality tests (Tajima's D and Fu and Li) ruled out the null hypothesis of a strictly neutral model, and Fu's Fs and Ramos-Onsins and Rozas' R2 confirmed the recent expansion of cork oak trees, validating its persistency in North Africa since the last glaciation during the Quaternary. The observed uni-modal mismatch distribution and the Harpending's raggedness index confirmed the demographic history model for cork oak. A phylogenetic dendrogram showed that the distribution of Q. suber trees occurs independently of geographical origin, the relief of the population site, and the bioclimatic stages. The molecular history and cytoplasmic diversity suggest that in situ and ex situ conservation strategies can be recommended for preserving landscape value and facing predictable future climatic changes.

  1. Surface Functionalization of g-C 3 N 4 : Molecular-Level Design of Noble-Metal-Free Hydrogen Evolution Photocatalysts

    KAUST Repository

    Chen, Yin

    2015-06-12

    A stable noble-metal-free hydrogen evolution photocatalyst based on graphite carbon nitride (g-C3N4) was developed by a molecular-level design strategy. Surface functionalization was successfully conducted to introduce a single nickel active site onto the surface of the semiconducting g-C3N4. This catalyst family (with less than 0.1 wt% of Ni) has been found to produce hydrogen with a rate near to the value obtained by using 3 wt% platinum as co-catalyst. This new catalyst also exhibits very good stability under hydrogen evolution conditions, without any evidence of deactivation after 24h. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  2. ALMA SPECTROSCOPIC SURVEY IN THE HUBBLE ULTRA DEEP FIELD: CO LUMINOSITY FUNCTIONS AND THE EVOLUTION OF THE COSMIC DENSITY OF MOLECULAR GAS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Decarli, Roberto; Walter, Fabian [Max-Planck Institut für Astronomie, Königstuhl 17, D-69117, Heidelberg (Germany); Aravena, Manuel; Assef, Roberto J. [Núcleo de Astronomía, Facultad de Ingeniería, Universidad Diego Portales, Av. Ejército 441, Santiago (Chile); Carilli, Chris [National Radio Astronomy Observatory, Pete V. Domenici Array Science Center, P.O. Box O, Socorro, NM 87801 (United States); Bouwens, Rychard [Leiden Observatory, Leiden University, P.O. Box 9513, NL2300 RA Leiden (Netherlands); Da Cunha, Elisabete [Centre for Astrophysics and Supercomputing, Swinburne University of Technology, Hawthorn, Victoria 3122 (Australia); Daddi, Emanuele [Laboratoire AIM, CEA/DSM-CNRS-Université Paris Diderot, Irfu/Service d’Astrophysique, CEA Saclay, Orme des Merisiers, F-91191 Gif-sur-Yvette cedex (France); Ivison, R. J.; Popping, Gergö [European Southern Observatory, Karl-Schwarzschild-Strasse 2, D-85748, Garching (Germany); Riechers, Dominik [Cornell University, 220 Space Sciences Building, Ithaca, NY 14853 (United States); Smail, Ian R. [6 Centre for Extragalactic Astronomy, Department of Physics, Durham University, South Road, Durham DH1 3LE (United Kingdom); Swinbank, Mark [Max-Planck-Institut für Radioastronomie, Auf dem Hügel 69, D-053121 Bonn (Germany); Weiss, Axel; Anguita, Timo, E-mail: decarli@mpia.de [Departamento de Ciencias Físicas, Universidad Andres Bello, Fernandez Concha 700, Las Condes, Santiago (Chile); and others

    2016-12-10

    In this paper we use ASPECS, the ALMA Spectroscopic Survey in the Hubble Ultra Deep Field in band 3 and band 6, to place blind constraints on the CO luminosity function and the evolution of the cosmic molecular gas density as a function of redshift up to z  ∼ 4.5. This study is based on galaxies that have been selected solely through their CO emission and not through any other property. In all of the redshift bins the ASPECS measurements reach the predicted “knee” of the CO luminosity function (around 5 × 10{sup 9} K km s{sup −1} pc{sup 2}). We find clear evidence of an evolution in the CO luminosity function with respect to z  ∼ 0, with more CO-luminous galaxies present at z  ∼ 2. The observed galaxies at z  ∼ 2 also appear more gas-rich than predicted by recent semi-analytical models. The comoving cosmic molecular gas density within galaxies as a function of redshift shows a drop by a factor of 3–10 from z  ∼ 2 to z  ∼ 0 (with significant error bars), and possibly a decline at z  > 3. This trend is similar to the observed evolution of the cosmic star formation rate density. The latter therefore appears to be at least partly driven by the increased availability of molecular gas reservoirs at the peak of cosmic star formation ( z  ∼ 2).

  3. The Photosensitivity of Rhodopsin Bleaching and Light-Induced Increases of Fundus Reflectance in Mice Measured In Vivo With Scanning Laser Ophthalmoscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Pengfei; Goswami, Mayank; Zawadzki, Robert J.; Pugh, Edward N.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose To quantify bleaching-induced changes in fundus reflectance in the mouse retina. Methods Light reflected from the fundus of albino (Balb/c) and pigmented (C57Bl/6J) mice was measured with a multichannel scanning laser ophthalmoscopy optical coherence tomography (SLO-OCT) optical system. Serial scanning of small retinal regions was used for bleaching rhodopsin and measuring reflectance changes. Results Serial scanning generated a saturating reflectance increase centered at 501 nm with a photosensitivity of 1.4 × 10−8 per molecule μm2 in both strains, 2-fold higher than expected were irradiance at the rod outer segment base equal to that at the retinal surface. The action spectrum of the reflectance increase corresponds to the absorption spectrum of mouse rhodopsin in situ. Spectra obtained before and after bleaching were fitted with a model of fundus reflectance, quantifying contributions from loss of rhodopsin absorption with bleaching, absorption by oxygenated hemoglobin (HbO2) in the choroid (Balb/c), and absorption by melanin (C57Bl/6J). Both mouse strains exhibited light-induced broadband reflectance changes explained as bleaching-induced reflectivity increases at photoreceptor inner segment/outer segment (IS/OS) junctions and OS tips. Conclusions The elevated photosensitivity of rhodopsin bleaching in vivo is explained by waveguide condensing of light in propagation from rod inner segment (RIS) to rod outer segment (ROS). The similar photosensitivity of rhodopsin in the two strains reveals that little light backscattered from the sclera can enter the ROS. The bleaching-induced increases in reflectance at the IS/OS junctions and OS tips resemble results previously reported in human cones, but are ascribed to rods due to their 30/1 predominance over cones in mice and to the relatively minor amount of cone M-opsin in the regions scanned. PMID:27403994

  4. Molecular evolution of myoglobin in the Tibetan Plateau endemic schizothoracine fish (Cyprinidae, Teleostei) and tissue-specific expression changes under hypoxia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qi, Delin; Chao, Yan; Zhao, Yongli; Xia, Mingzhe; Wu, Rongrong

    2018-04-01

    Myoglobin (Mb) is an oxygen-binding hemoprotein that was once thought to be exclusively expressed in oxidative myocytes of skeletal and cardiac muscle where it serves in oxygen storage and facilitates intracellular oxygen diffusion. In this study, we cloned the coding sequence of the Mb gene from four species, representing three groups, of the schizothoracine fish endemic to the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau (QTP), then conducted molecular evolution analyses. We also investigated tissue expression patterns of Mb and the expression response to moderate and severe hypoxia at the mRNA and protein levels in a representative of the highly specialized schizothoracine fish species, Schizopygopsis pylzovi. Molecular evolution analyses showed that Mb from the highly specialized schizothoracine fish have undergone positive selection and one positively selected residue (81L) was identified, which is located in the F helix, close to or in contact with the heme. We present tentative evidence that the Mb duplication event occurred in the ancestor of the schizothoracine and Cyprininae fish (common carp and goldfish), and that the Mb2 paralog was subsequently lost in the schizothoracine fish. In S. pylzovi, Mb mRNA is expressed in various tissues with the exception of the intestine and gill, but all such tissues, including the liver, muscle, kidney, brain, eye, and skin, expressed very low levels of Mb mRNA (Tibetan Plateau fish.

  5. Molecular evolution of GB virus B hepatitis virus during acute resolving and persistent infections in experimentally infected tamarins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Takikawa, Shingo; Engle, Ronald E; Faulk, Kristina N

    2010-01-01

    (-3) substitutions per site year(-1) during weeks 1-52 and 53-104, respectively. Thus, there was a significant decrease in evolution over time, as found for hepatitis C virus. The rate of non-synonymous substitution per non-synonymous site compared with that of synonymous substitution per synonymous site decreased...

  6. The SILCC (SImulating the LifeCycle of molecular Clouds) project - I. Chemical evolution of the supernova-driven ISM

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Walch, S.; Girichidis, P.; Naab, T.; Gatto, A.; Glover, S.C.O.; Wünsch, Richard; Klessen, R.S.; Clark, P.C.; Peters, T.; Derigs, D.; Baczynski, C.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 454, č. 1 (2015), s. 238-268 ISSN 0035-8711 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP209/12/1795 Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : magnetodydrodynamics * ISM clouds * ISM evolution Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy , Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 4.952, year: 2015

  7. The role of fusion in ant chromosome evolution: insights from cytogenetic analysis using a molecular phylogenetic approach in the genus mycetophylax.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardoso, Danon Clemes; das Graças Pompolo, Silvia; Cristiano, Maykon Passos; Tavares, Mara Garcia

    2014-01-01

    Among insect taxa, ants exhibit one of the most variable chromosome numbers ranging from n = 1 to n = 60. This high karyotype diversity is suggested to be correlated to ants diversification. The karyotype evolution of ants is usually understood in terms of Robertsonian rearrangements towards an increase in chromosome numbers. The ant genus Mycetophylax is a small monogynous basal Attini ant (Formicidae: Myrmicinae), endemic to sand dunes along the Brazilian coastlines. A recent taxonomic revision validates three species, Mycetophylax morschi, M. conformis and M. simplex. In this paper, we cytogenetically characterized all species that belongs to the genus and analyzed the karyotypic evolution of Mycetophylax in the context of a molecular phylogeny and ancestral character state reconstruction. M. morschi showed a polymorphic number of chromosomes, with colonies showing 2n = 26 and 2n = 30 chromosomes. M. conformis presented a diploid chromosome number of 30 chromosomes, while M. simplex showed 36 chromosomes. The probabilistic models suggest that the ancestral haploid chromosome number of Mycetophylax was 17 (Likelihood framework) or 18 (Bayesian framework). The analysis also suggested that fusions were responsible for the evolutionary reduction in chromosome numbers of M. conformis and M. morschi karyotypes whereas fission may determines the M. simplex karyotype. These results obtained show the importance of fusions in chromosome changes towards a chromosome number reduction in Formicidae and how a phylogenetic background can be used to reconstruct hypotheses about chromosomes evolution.

  8. Applying Unique Molecular Identifiers in Next Generation Sequencing Reveals a Constrained Viral Quasispecies Evolution under Cross-Reactive Antibody Pressure Targeting Long Alpha Helix of Hemagglutinin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hauck, Nastasja C.; Kirpach, Josiane; Kiefer, Christina; Farinelle, Sophie; Morris, Stephen A.; Muller, Claude P.; Lu, I-Na

    2018-01-01

    To overcome yearly efforts and costs for the production of seasonal influenza vaccines, new approaches for the induction of broadly protective and long-lasting immune responses have been developed in the past decade. To warrant safety and efficacy of the emerging crossreactive vaccine candidates, it is critical to understand the evolution of influenza viruses in response to these new immune pressures. Here we applied unique molecular identifiers in next generation sequencing to analyze the evolution of influenza quasispecies under in vivo antibody pressure targeting the hemagglutinin (HA) long alpha helix (LAH). Our vaccine targeting LAH of hemagglutinin elicited significant seroconversion and protection against homologous and heterologous influenza virus strains in mice. The vaccine not only significantly reduced lung viral titers, but also induced a well-known bottleneck effect by decreasing virus diversity. In contrast to the classical bottleneck effect, here we showed a significant increase in the frequency of viruses with amino acid sequences identical to that of vaccine targeting LAH domain. No escape mutant emerged after vaccination. These results not only support the potential of a universal influenza vaccine targeting the conserved LAH domains, but also clearly demonstrate that the well-established bottleneck effect on viral quasispecies evolution does not necessarily generate escape mutants. PMID:29587397

  9. Applying Unique Molecular Identifiers in Next Generation Sequencing Reveals a Constrained Viral Quasispecies Evolution under Cross-Reactive Antibody Pressure Targeting Long Alpha Helix of Hemagglutinin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nastasja C. Hauck

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available To overcome yearly efforts and costs for the production of seasonal influenza vaccines, new approaches for the induction of broadly protective and long-lasting immune responses have been developed in the past decade. To warrant safety and efficacy of the emerging crossreactive vaccine candidates, it is critical to understand the evolution of influenza viruses in response to these new immune pressures. Here we applied unique molecular identifiers in next generation sequencing to analyze the evolution of influenza quasispecies under in vivo antibody pressure targeting the hemagglutinin (HA long alpha helix (LAH. Our vaccine targeting LAH of hemagglutinin elicited significant seroconversion and protection against homologous and heterologous influenza virus strains in mice. The vaccine not only significantly reduced lung viral titers, but also induced a well-known bottleneck effect by decreasing virus diversity. In contrast to the classical bottleneck effect, here we showed a significant increase in the frequency of viruses with amino acid sequences identical to that of vaccine targeting LAH domain. No escape mutant emerged after vaccination. These results not only support the potential of a universal influenza vaccine targeting the conserved LAH domains, but also clearly demonstrate that the well-established bottleneck effect on viral quasispecies evolution does not necessarily generate escape mutants.

  10. Directed evolution and in silico analysis of reaction centre proteins reveal molecular signatures of photosynthesis adaptation to radiation pressure.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giuseppina Rea

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Evolutionary mechanisms adopted by the photosynthetic apparatus to modifications in the Earth's atmosphere on a geological time-scale remain a focus of intense research. The photosynthetic machinery has had to cope with continuously changing environmental conditions and particularly with the complex ionizing radiation emitted by solar flares. The photosynthetic D1 protein, being the site of electron tunneling-mediated charge separation and solar energy transduction, is a hot spot for the generation of radiation-induced radical injuries. We explored the possibility to produce D1 variants tolerant to ionizing radiation in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii and clarified the effect of radiation-induced oxidative damage on the photosynthetic proteins evolution. In vitro directed evolution strategies targeted at the D1 protein were adopted to create libraries of chlamydomonas random mutants, subsequently selected by exposures to radical-generating proton or neutron sources. The common trend observed in the D1 aminoacidic substitutions was the replacement of less polar by more polar amino acids. The applied selection pressure forced replacement of residues more sensitive to oxidative damage with less sensitive ones, suggesting that ionizing radiation may have been one of the driving forces in the evolution of the eukaryotic photosynthetic apparatus. A set of the identified aminoacidic substitutions, close to the secondary plastoquinone binding niche and oxygen evolving complex, were introduced by site-directed mutagenesis in un-transformed strains, and their sensitivity to free radicals attack analyzed. Mutants displayed reduced electron transport efficiency in physiological conditions, and increased photosynthetic performance stability and oxygen evolution capacity in stressful high-light conditions. Finally, comparative in silico analyses of D1 aminoacidic sequences of organisms differently located in the evolution chain, revealed a higher ratio of residues

  11. Molecular Evolution of the CYP2D Subfamily in Primates: Purifying Selection on Substrate Recognition Sites without the Frequent or Long-Tract Gene Conversion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yasukochi, Yoshiki; Satta, Yoko

    2015-01-01

    The human cytochrome P450 (CYP) 2D6 gene is a member of the CYP2D gene subfamily, along with the CYP2D7P and CYP2D8P pseudogenes. Although the CYP2D6 enzyme has been studied extensively because of its clinical importance, the evolution of the CYP2D subfamily has not yet been fully understood. Therefore, the goal of this study was to reveal the evolutionary process of the human drug metabolic system. Here, we investigate molecular evolution of the CYP2D subfamily in primates by comparing 14 CYP2D sequences from humans to New World monkey genomes. Window analysis and statistical tests revealed that entire genomic sequences of paralogous genes were extensively homogenized by gene conversion during molecular evolution of CYP2D genes in primates. A neighbor-joining tree based on genomic sequences at the nonsubstrate recognition sites showed that CYP2D6 and CYP2D8 genes were clustered together due to gene conversion. In contrast, a phylogenetic tree using amino acid sequences at substrate recognition sites did not cluster the CYP2D6 and CYP2D8 genes, suggesting that the functional constraint on substrate specificity is one of the causes for purifying selection at the substrate recognition sites. Our results suggest that the CYP2D gene subfamily in primates has evolved to maintain the regioselectivity for a substrate hydroxylation activity between individual enzymes, even though extensive gene conversion has occurred across CYP2D coding sequences. PMID:25808902

  12. The complete plastome of macaw palm [Acrocomia aculeata (Jacq.) Lodd. ex Mart.] and extensive molecular analyses of the evolution of plastid genes in Arecaceae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Santana Lopes, Amanda; Gomes Pacheco, Túlio; Nimz, Tabea; do Nascimento Vieira, Leila; Guerra, Miguel P; Nodari, Rubens O; de Souza, Emanuel Maltempi; de Oliveira Pedrosa, Fábio; Rogalski, Marcelo

    2018-04-01

    The plastome of macaw palm was sequenced allowing analyses of evolution and molecular markers. Additionally, we demonstrated that more than half of plastid protein-coding genes in Arecaceae underwent positive selection. Macaw palm is a native species from tropical and subtropical Americas. It shows high production of oil per hectare reaching up to 70% of oil content in fruits and an interesting plasticity to grow in different ecosystems. Its domestication and breeding are still in the beginning, which makes the development of molecular markers essential to assess natural populations and germplasm collections. Therefore, we sequenced and characterized in detail the plastome of macaw palm. A total of 221 SSR loci were identified in the plastome of macaw palm. Additionally, eight polymorphism hotspots were characterized at level of subfamily and tribe. Moreover, several events of gain and loss of RNA editing sites were found within the subfamily Arecoideae. Aiming to uncover evolutionary events in Arecaceae, we also analyzed extensively the evolution of plastid genes. The analyses show that highly divergent genes seem to evolve in a species-specific manner, suggesting that gene degeneration events may be occurring within Arecaceae at the level of genus or species. Unexpectedly, we found that more than half of plastid protein-coding genes are under positive selection, including genes for photosynthesis, gene expression machinery and other essential plastid functions. Furthermore, we performed a phylogenomic analysis using whole plastomes of 40 taxa, representing all subfamilies of Arecaceae, which placed the macaw palm within the tribe Cocoseae. Finally, the data showed here are important for genetic studies in macaw palm and provide new insights into the evolution of plastid genes and environmental adaptation in Arecaceae.

  13. Synthesis of 13C and 2H labelled retinals: spectroscopic investigations on isotopically labelled rhodopsin and bacteriorhodopsin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pardoen, J.A.

    1986-01-01

    In order to develop probes of the structure of chromophores, the author introduces isotopic modifications at specific chromophoric positions as structural probes. To obtain bacteriorhodopsin, rhodopsin and their photoproducts labelled in the chromophore at selected positions, bacterioopsin and opsin were reacted with the appropriate labelled a11-trans and 11-cis retinals. The author describes the synthesis of a11-trans retinal selectively 13 C labelled at different positions. The characterization of these labelled a11-trans retinals by mass spectrometry, 300 MHz 1 H NMR and 75 MHz 13 C NMR spectroscopy is given. The photochemical preparation and isolation of the pure 9-, 11- and 13-cis forms is described in the experimental part. (Auth.)

  14. Genomic organization and molecular phylogenies of the beta (β keratin multigene family in the chicken (Gallus gallus and zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata: implications for feather evolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sawyer Roger H

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The epidermal appendages of reptiles and birds are constructed of beta (β keratins. The molecular phylogeny of these keratins is important to understanding the evolutionary origin of these appendages, especially feathers. Knowing that the crocodilian β-keratin genes are closely related to those of birds, the published genomes of the chicken and zebra finch provide an opportunity not only to compare the genomic organization of their β-keratins, but to study their molecular evolution in archosaurians. Results The subfamilies (claw, feather, feather-like, and scale of β-keratin genes are clustered in the same 5' to 3' order on microchromosome 25 in chicken and zebra finch, although the number of claw and feather genes differs between the species. Molecular phylogenies show that the monophyletic scale genes are the basal group within birds and that the monophyletic avian claw genes form the basal group to all feather and feather-like genes. Both species have a number of feather clades on microchromosome 27 that form monophyletic groups. An additional monophyletic cluster of feather genes exist on macrochromosome 2 for each species. Expression sequence tag analysis for the chicken demonstrates that all feather β-keratin clades are expressed. Conclusions Similarity in the overall genomic organization of β-keratins in Galliformes and Passeriformes suggests similar organization in all Neognathae birds, and perhaps in the ancestral lineages leading to modern birds, such as the paravian Anchiornis huxleyi. Phylogenetic analyses demonstrate that evolution of archosaurian epidermal appendages in the lineage leading to birds was accompanied by duplication and divergence of an ancestral β-keratin gene cluster. As morphological diversification of epidermal appendages occurred and the β-keratin multigene family expanded, novel β-keratin genes were selected for novel functions within appendages such as feathers.

  15. Neuro-psychopharmacological perspective of Orphan receptors of Rhodopsin (class A) family of G protein-coupled receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Muhammad Zahid; He, Ling

    2017-04-01

    In the central nervous system (CNS), G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are the most fruitful targets for neuropsychopharmacological drug development. Rhodopsin (class A) is the most studied class of GPCR and includes orphan receptors for which the endogenous ligand is not known or is unclear. Characterization of orphan GPCRs has proven to be challenging, and the production pace of GPCR-based drugs has been incredibly slow. Determination of the functions of these receptors may provide unexpected insight into physiological and neuropathological processes. Advances in various methods and techniques to investigate orphan receptors including in situ hybridization and knockdown/knockout (KD/KO) showed extensive expression of these receptors in the mammalian brain and unmasked their physiological and neuropathological roles. Due to these rapid progress and development, orphan GPCRs are rising as a new and promising class of drug targets for neurodegenerative diseases and psychiatric disorders. This review presents a neuropsychopharmacological perspective of 26 orphan receptors of rhodopsin (class A) family, namely GPR3, GPR6, GPR12, GPR17, GPR26, GPR35, GPR39, GPR48, GPR49, GPR50, GPR52, GPR55, GPR61, GPR62, GPR63, GPR68, GPR75, GPR78, GPR83, GPR84, GPR85, GPR88, GPR153, GPR162, GPR171, and TAAR6. We discussed the expression of these receptors in mammalian brain and their physiological roles. Furthermore, we have briefly highlighted their roles in neurodegenerative diseases and psychiatric disorders including Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, neuroinflammation, inflammatory pain, bipolar and schizophrenic disorders, epilepsy, anxiety, and depression.

  16. Molecular organization and phylogenetic analysis of 5S rDNA in crustaceans of the genus Pollicipes reveal birth-and-death evolution and strong purifying selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perina, Alejandra; Seoane, David; González-Tizón, Ana M; Rodríguez-Fariña, Fernanda; Martínez-Lage, Andrés

    2011-10-17

    The 5S ribosomal DNA (5S rDNA) is organized in tandem arrays with repeat units that consist of a transcribing region (5S) and a variable nontranscribed spacer (NTS), in higher eukaryotes. Until recently the 5S rDNA was thought to be subject to concerted evolution, however, in several taxa, sequence divergence levels between the 5S and the NTS were found higher than expected under this model. So, many studies have shown that birth-and-death processes and selection can drive the evolution of 5S rDNA. In analyses of 5S rDNA evolution is found several 5S rDNA types in the genome, with low levels of nucleotide variation in the 5S and a spacer region highly divergent. Molecular organization and nucleotide sequence of the 5S ribosomal DNA multigene family (5S rDNA) were investigated in three Pollicipes species in an evolutionary context. The nucleotide sequence variation revealed that several 5S rDNA variants occur in Pollicipes genomes. They are clustered in up to seven different types based on differences in their nontranscribed spacers (NTS). Five different units of 5S rDNA were characterized in P. pollicipes and two different units in P. elegans and P. polymerus. Analysis of these sequences showed that identical types were shared among species and that two pseudogenes were present. We predicted the secondary structure and characterized the upstream and downstream conserved elements. Phylogenetic analysis showed an among-species clustering pattern of 5S rDNA types. These results suggest that the evolution of Pollicipes 5S rDNA is driven by birth-and-death processes with strong purifying selection.

  17. Molecular size evolution of oligomers in organic aerosols collected in urban atmospheres and generated in a smog chamber.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalberer, Markus; Sax, Mirjam; Samburova, Vera

    2006-10-01

    Only a minor fraction of the total organic aerosol mass can be resolved on a molecular level. High molecular weight compounds in organic aerosols have recently gained much attention because this class of compound potentially explains a major fraction of the unexplained organic aerosol mass. These compounds have been identified with different mass spectrometric methods, and compounds with molecular masses up to 1000 Da are found in secondary organic aerosols (SOA) generated from aromatic and terpene precursors in smog chamber experiments. Here, we apply matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry (MALDI-MS) to SOA particles from two biogenic precursors, alpha-pinene and isoprene. Similar oligomer patterns are found in these two SOA systems, but also in SOA from trimethylbenzene, an anthropogenic SOA precursor. However, different maxima molecular sizes were measured for these three SOA systems. While oligomers in alpha-pinene and isoprene have sizes mostly below 600-700 Da, they grow up to about 1000 Da in trimethylbenzene-SOA. The final molecular size of the oligomers is reached early during the particle aging process, whereas other particle properties related to aging, such as the overall acid concentration or the oligomer concentration, increase continuously over a much longer time scale. This kinetic behavior of the oligomer molecular size growth can be explained by a chain growth kinetic regime. Similar oligomer mass patterns were measured in aqueous extracts of ambient aerosol samples (measured with the same technique). Distinct differences between summer and winter were observed. In summer a few single mass peaks were measured with much higher intensity than in winter, pointing to a possible difference in the formation processes of these compounds in winter and summer.

  18. Pholcid spider molecular systematics revisited, with new insights into the biogeography and the evolution of the group

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dimitrov, Dimitar Stefanov; Astrin, Jonas J.; Huber, Bernhard A.

    2013-01-01

    analysed using parsimony, maximum-likelihood and Bayesian methods for phylogenetic reconstruction. We show that in several previously problematic cases molecular and morphological data are converging towards a single hypothesis. This is also the first study that explicitly addresses the age of pholcid......We analysed seven genetic markers sampled from 165 pholcids and 34 outgroups in order to test and improve the recently revised classification of the family. Our results are based on the largest and most comprehensive set of molecular data so far to study pholcid relationships. The data were...

  19. Sequence comparisons of odorant receptors among tortricid moths reveal different rates of molecular evolution among family members.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Colm Carraher

    Full Text Available In insects, odorant receptors detect volatile cues involved in behaviours such as mate recognition, food location and oviposition. We have investigated the evolution of three odorant receptors from five species within the moth genera Ctenopseustis and Planotrotrix, family Tortricidae, which fall into distinct clades within the odorant receptor multigene family. One receptor is the orthologue of the co-receptor Or83b, now known as Orco (OR2, and encodes the obligate ion channel subunit of the receptor complex. In comparison, the other two receptors, OR1 and OR3, are ligand-binding receptor subunits, activated by volatile compounds produced by plants--methyl salicylate and citral, respectively. Rates of sequence evolution at non-synonymous sites were significantly higher in OR1 compared with OR2 and OR3. Within the dataset OR1 contains 109 variable amino acid positions that are distributed evenly across the entire protein including transmembrane helices, loop regions and termini, while OR2 and OR3 contain 18 and 16 variable sites, respectively. OR2 shows a high level of amino acid conservation as expected due to its essential role in odour detection; however we found unexpected differences in the rate of evolution between two ligand-binding odorant receptors, OR1 and OR3. OR3 shows high sequence conservation suggestive of a conserved role in odour reception, whereas the higher rate of evolution observed in OR1, particularly at non-synonymous sites, may be suggestive of relaxed constraint, perhaps associated with the loss of an ancestral role in sex pheromone reception.

  20. Evolution of heavy ions (He{sup 2+}, H{sup +}) radiolytic yield of molecular hydrogen vs. ''Track-Segment'' LET values

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Crumiere, Francis; Vandenborre, Johan; Blain, Guillaume; Fattahi, Massoud [Nantes Univ., CNRS/IN2P3 (France). SUBATECH Unite Mixte de Recherche 6457; Haddad, Ferid [Nantes Univ., CNRS/IN2P3 (France). SUBATECH Unite Mixte de Recherche 6457; Cyclotron Arronax, Saint Herblain (France)

    2017-08-01

    Ionizing radiation's effects onto water molecules lead to the ionization and/or the excitation of them. Then, these phenomena are followed by the formation of radicals and molecular products. The linear energy transfer (LET), which defines the energy deposition density along the radiation length, is different according to the nature of ionizing particles. Thus, the values of radiolytic yields, defined as the number of radical and molecular products formed or consumed by unit of deposited energy, evolve according to this parameter. This work consists in following the evolution of radiolytic yield of molecular hydrogen and ferric ions according to the ''Track-Segment'' LET of ionizing particles (protons, helions). Concerning G(Fe{sup 3+}) values, it seems that the energy deposited into the Bragg peak does not play the main role for the Fe{sup 3+} radiolytic formation, whereas for the G(H{sub 2}) it is the case with a component around 40% of the Bragg peak in the dihydrogen production. Therefore, as main results of this work, for high energetic Helion and Proton beams, the G(Fe{sup 3+}) values, which can be used for further dosimetry studies for example during the α radiolysis experiments, and the primary g(H{sub 2}) values for the Track-Segment LET, which can be used to determine the dihydrogen production by α-emitters, are published.

  1. The Hawaiian bobtail squid (Euprymna scolopes): a model to study the molecular basis of eukaryote-prokaryote mutualism and the development and evolution of morphological novelties in cephalopods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Patricia N; McFall-Ngai, Margaret J; Callaerts, Patrick; de Couet, H Gert

    2009-11-01

    The Hawaiian bobtail squid, Euprymna scolopes, is a cephalopod whose small size, short lifespan, rapid growth, and year-round availability make it suitable as a model organism. E. scolopes is studied in three principal contexts: (1) as a model of cephalopod development; (2) as a model of animal-bacterial symbioses; and (3) as a system for studying adaptations of tissues that interact with light. E. scolopes embryos can be obtained continually and can be reared in the laboratory over an entire generation. The embryos and protective chorions are optically clear, facilitating in situ developmental observations, and can be manipulated experimentally. Many molecular protocols have been developed for studying E. scolopes development. This species is best known, however, for its symbiosis with the luminous marine bacterium Vibrio fischeri and has been used to study determinants of symbiont specificity, the influence of symbiosis on development of the squid light organ, and the mechanisms by which a stable association is achieved. Both partners can be grown independently under laboratory conditions, a feature that offers the unusual opportunity to manipulate the symbiosis experimentally. Molecular and genetic tools have been developed for V. fischeri, and a large expressed sequence tag (EST) database is available for the host symbiotic tissues. Additionally, comparisons between light organ form and function to those of the eye can be made. Both types of tissue interact with light, but have divergent embryonic development. As such, they offer an opportunity to study the molecular basis for the evolution of morphological novelties.

  2. Molecular evolution inferred from small subunit rRNA sequences: what does it tell us about phylogenetic relationships and taxonomy of the parabasalids?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viscogliosi, E.; Edgcomb, V. P.; Gerbod, D.; Noel, C.; Delgado-Viscogliosi, P.; Sogin, M. L. (Principal Investigator)

    1999-01-01

    The Parabasala are a primitive group of protists divided into two classes: the trichomonads and the hypermastigids. Until recently, phylogeny and taxonomy of parabasalids were mainly based on the comparative analysis of morphological characters primarily linked to the development of their cytoskeleton. Recent use of molecular markers, such as small subunit (SSU) rRNA has led to now insights into the systematics of the Parabasala and other groups of prolists. An updated phylogeny based on SSU rRNA is provided and compared to that inferred from ultrastructural data. The SSU rRNA phylogeny contradicts the dogma equating simple characters with pumitive characters. Hypermastigids, possessing a hyperdeveloped cytoskeleton, exhibit the most basal emergence in the parabasalid lineage. Other observations emerge from the SSU rRNA analysis, such as the secondary loss of some cytoskeleton structures in all representatives of the Monocercomonadidae, the existence of secondarily free living taxa (reversibility of parasitism) and the evidence against the co-evolution of the endobiotic parabasalids and their animal hosts. According to phylogenies based on SSU rRNA, all the trichomonad families are not monophyletic groups, putting into question the validity of current taxonomic assignments. The precise branching order of some taxa remains unclear, but this issue can possibly be addressed by the molecular analysis of additional parabasalids. The goal of such additional analyses would be to propose, in a near future, a revision of the taxonomy of this group of protists that takes into account both molecular and morphological data.

  3. Spatiotemporal structure of molecular evolution of H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza viruses in Vietnam.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrel, Margaret A; Emch, Michael; Jobe, R Todd; Moody, Aaron; Wan, Xiu-Feng

    2010-01-08

    Vietnam is one of the countries most affected by outbreaks of H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza viruses. First identified in Vietnam in poultry in 2001 and in humans in 2004, the virus has since caused 111 cases and 56 deaths in humans. In 2003/2004 H5N1 outbreaks, nearly the entire poultry population of Vietnam was culled. Our earlier study (Wan et al., 2008, PLoS ONE, 3(10): e3462) demonstrated that there have been at least six independent H5N1 introductions into Vietnam and there were nine newly emerged reassortants from 2001 to 2007 in Vietnam. H5N1 viruses in Vietnam cluster distinctly around Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. However, the nature of the relationship between genetic divergence and geographic patterns is still unclear. In this study, we hypothesized that genetic distances between H5N1 viruses in Vietnam are correlated with geographic distances, as the result of distinct population and environment patterns along Vietnam's long north to south longitudinal extent. Based on this hypothesis, we combined spatial statistical methods with genetic analytic techniques and explicitly used geographic space to explore genetic evolution of H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza viruses at the sub-national scale in Vietnam. Our dataset consisted of 125 influenza viruses (with whole genome sets) isolated in Vietnam from 2003 to 2007. Our results document the significant effect of space and time on genetic evolution and the rise of two regional centers of genetic mixing by 2007. These findings give insight into processes underlying viral evolution and suggest that genetic differentiation is associated with the distance between concentrations of human and poultry populations around Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. The results show that genetic evolution of H5N1 viruses in Vietnamese domestic poultry is highly correlated with the location and spread of those viruses in geographic space. This correlation varies by scale, time, and gene, though a classic isolation by

  4. Spatiotemporal structure of molecular evolution of H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza viruses in Vietnam.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Margaret A Carrel

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Vietnam is one of the countries most affected by outbreaks of H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza viruses. First identified in Vietnam in poultry in 2001 and in humans in 2004, the virus has since caused 111 cases and 56 deaths in humans. In 2003/2004 H5N1 outbreaks, nearly the entire poultry population of Vietnam was culled. Our earlier study (Wan et al., 2008, PLoS ONE, 3(10: e3462 demonstrated that there have been at least six independent H5N1 introductions into Vietnam and there were nine newly emerged reassortants from 2001 to 2007 in Vietnam. H5N1 viruses in Vietnam cluster distinctly around Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. However, the nature of the relationship between genetic divergence and geographic patterns is still unclear.In this study, we hypothesized that genetic distances between H5N1 viruses in Vietnam are correlated with geographic distances, as the result of distinct population and environment patterns along Vietnam's long north to south longitudinal extent. Based on this hypothesis, we combined spatial statistical methods with genetic analytic techniques and explicitly used geographic space to explore genetic evolution of H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza viruses at the sub-national scale in Vietnam. Our dataset consisted of 125 influenza viruses (with whole genome sets isolated in Vietnam from 2003 to 2007. Our results document the significant effect of space and time on genetic evolution and the rise of two regional centers of genetic mixing by 2007. These findings give insight into processes underlying viral evolution and suggest that genetic differentiation is associated with the distance between concentrations of human and poultry populations around Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.The results show that genetic evolution of H5N1 viruses in Vietnamese domestic poultry is highly correlated with the location and spread of those viruses in geographic space. This correlation varies by scale, time, and gene, though a classic

  5. Role of accelerated segment switch in exons to alter targeting (ASSET in the molecular evolution of snake venom proteins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kini R Manjunatha

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Snake venom toxins evolve more rapidly than other proteins through accelerated changes in the protein coding regions. Previously we have shown that accelerated segment switch in exons to alter targeting (ASSET might play an important role in its functional evolution of viperid three-finger toxins. In this phenomenon, short sequences in exons are radically changed to unrelated sequences and hence affect the folding and functional properties of the toxins. Results Here we analyzed other snake venom protein families to elucidate the role of ASSET in their functional evolution. ASSET appears to be involved in the functional evolution of three-finger toxins to a greater extent than in several other venom protein families. ASSET leads to replacement of some of the critical amino acid residues that affect the biological function in three-finger toxins as well as change the conformation of the loop that is involved in binding to specific target sites. Conclusion ASSET could lead to novel functions in snake venom proteins. Among snake venom serine proteases, ASSET contributes to changes in three surface segments. One of these segments near the substrate binding region is known to affect substrate specificity, and its exchange may have significant implications for differences in isoform catalytic activity on specific target protein substrates. ASSET therefore plays an important role in functional diversification of snake venom proteins, in addition to accelerated point mutations in the protein coding regions. Accelerated point mutations lead to fine-tuning of target specificity, whereas ASSET leads to large-scale replacement of multiple functionally important residues, resulting in change or gain of functions.

  6. Molecular cloning of RBCS genes in Selaginella and the evolution of the rbcS gene family

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wang Bo

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Rubisco small subunits (RBCS are encoded by a nuclear rbcS multigene family in higher plants and green algae. However, owing to the lack of rbcS sequences in lycophytes, the characteristics of rbcS genes in lycophytes is unclear. Recently, the complete genome sequence of the lycophyte Selaginella moellendorffii provided the first insight into the rbcS gene family in lycophytes. To understand further the characteristics of rbcS genes in other Selaginella, the full length of rbcS genes (rbcS1 and rbcS2 from two other Selaginella species were isolated. Both rbcS1 and rbcS2 genes shared more than 97% identity among three Selaginella species. RBCS proteins from Selaginella contained the Pfam RBCS domain F00101, which was a major domain of other plant RBCS proteins. To explore the evolution of the rbcS gene family across Selaginella and other plants, we identified and performed comparative analysis of the rbcS gene family among 16 model plants based on a genome-wide analysis. The results showed that (i two rbcS genes were obtained in Selaginella, which is the second fewest number of rbcS genes among the 16 representative plants; (ii an expansion of rbcS genes occurred in the moss Physcomitrella patens; (iii only RBCS proteins from angiosperms contained the Pfam PF12338 domains, and (iv a pattern of concerted evolution existed in the rbcS gene family. Our study provides new insights into the evolution of the rbcS gene family in Selaginella and other plants.

  7. A Comparative Genomic Survey Provides Novel Insights into Molecular Evolution of l-Aromatic Amino Acid Decarboxylase in Vertebrates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yanping Li

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Melatonin is a pleiotropic molecule with various important physiological roles in vertebrates. l-aromatic amino acid decarboxylase (AAAD is the second enzyme for melatonin synthesis. By far, a clear-cut gene function of AAAD in the biosynthesis of melatonin has been unclear in vertebrates. Here, we provide novel insights into the evolution of AAAD based on 77 vertebrate genomes. According to our genome-wide alignments, we extracted a total of 151 aaad nucleotide sequences. A phylogenetic tree was constructed on the basis of these sequences and corresponding protein alignments, indicating that tetrapods and diploid bony fish genomes contained one aaad gene and a new aaad-like gene, which formed a novel AAAD family. However, in tetraploid teleosts, there were two copies of the aaad gene due to whole genome duplication. A subsequent synteny analysis investigated 81 aaad sequences and revealed their collinearity and systematic evolution. Interestingly, we discovered that platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus, Atlantic cod (Guadus morhua, Mexican tetra (Astyanax mexicanus, and a Sinocyclocheilus cavefish (S. anshuiensis have long evolutionary branches in the phylogenetic topology. We also performed pseudogene identification and selection pressure analysis; however, the results revealed a deletion of 37 amino acids in Atlantic cod and premature stop codons in the cave-restricted S. anshuiensis and A. mexicanus, suggesting weakening or disappearing rhythms in these cavefishes. Selective pressure analysis of aaad between platypus and other tetrapods showed that rates of nonsynonymous (Ka and synonymous (Ks substitutions were higher when comparing the platypus to other representative tetrapods, indicating that, in this semiaquatic mammal, the aaad gene experienced selection during the process of evolution. In summary, our current work provides novel insights into aaad genes in vertebrates from a genome-wide view.

  8. Molecular evolution of vertebrate neurotrophins: co-option of the highly conserved nerve growth factor gene into the advanced snake venom arsenalf.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sunagar, Kartik; Fry, Bryan Grieg; Jackson, Timothy N W; Casewell, Nicholas R; Undheim, Eivind A B; Vidal, Nicolas; Ali, Syed A; King, Glenn F; Vasudevan, Karthikeyan; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Antunes, Agostinho

    2013-01-01

    Neurotrophins are a diverse class of structurally related proteins, essential for neuronal development, survival, plasticity and regeneration. They are characterized by major family members, such as the nerve growth factors (NGF), brain-derived neurotrophic factors (BDNF) and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3), which have been demonstrated here to lack coding sequence variations and follow the regime of negative selection, highlighting their extremely important conserved role in vertebrate homeostasis. However, in stark contrast, venom NGF secreted as part of the chemical arsenal of the venomous advanced snake family Elapidae (and to a lesser extent Viperidae) have characteristics consistent with the typical accelerated molecular evolution of venom components. This includes a rapid rate of diversification under the significant influence of positive-selection, with the majority of positively-selected sites found in the secreted β-polypeptide chain (74%) and on the molecular surface of the protein (92%), while the core structural and functional residues remain highly constrained. Such focal mutagenesis generates active residues on the toxin molecular surface, which are capable of interacting with novel biological targets in prey to induce a myriad of pharmacological effects. We propose that caenophidian NGFs could participate in prey-envenoming by causing a massive release of chemical mediators from mast cells to mount inflammatory reactions and increase vascular permeability, thereby aiding the spread of other toxins and/or by acting as proapoptotic factors. Despite their presence in reptilian venom having been known for over 60 years, this is the first evidence that venom-secreted NGF follows the molecular evolutionary pattern of other venom components, and thus likely participates in prey-envenomation.

  9. Molecular Evolution of Vertebrate Neurotrophins: Co-Option of the Highly Conserved Nerve Growth Factor Gene into the Advanced Snake Venom Arsenalf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sunagar, Kartik; Fry, Bryan Grieg; Jackson, Timothy N. W.; Casewell, Nicholas R.; Undheim, Eivind A. B.; Vidal, Nicolas; Ali, Syed A.; King, Glenn F.; Vasudevan, Karthikeyan; Vasconcelos, Vitor; Antunes, Agostinho

    2013-01-01

    Neurotrophins are a diverse class of structurally related proteins, essential for neuronal development, survival, plasticity and regeneration. They are characterized by major family members, such as the nerve growth factors (NGF), brain-derived neurotrophic factors (BDNF) and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3), which have been demonstrated here to lack coding sequence variations and follow the regime of negative selection, highlighting their extremely important conserved role in vertebrate homeostasis. However, in stark contrast, venom NGF secreted as part of the chemical arsenal of the venomous advanced snake family Elapidae (and to a lesser extent Viperidae) have characteristics consistent with the typical accelerated molecular evolution of venom components. This includes a rapid rate of diversification under the significant influence of positive-selection, with the majority of positively-selected sites found in the secreted β-polypeptide chain (74%) and on the molecular surface of the protein (92%), while the core structural and functional residues remain highly constrained. Such focal mutagenesis generates active residues on the toxin molecular surface, which are capable of interacting with novel biological targets in prey to induce a myriad of pharmacological effects. We propose that caenophidian NGFs could participate in prey-envenoming by causing a massive release of chemical mediators from mast cells to mount inflammatory reactions and increase vascular permeability, thereby aiding the spread of other toxins and/or by acting as proapoptotic factors. Despite their presence in reptilian venom having been known for over 60 years, this is the first evidence that venom-secreted NGF follows the molecular evolutionary pattern of other venom components, and thus likely participates in prey-envenomation. PMID:24312363

  10. Molecular evolution of vertebrate neurotrophins: co-option of the highly conserved nerve growth factor gene into the advanced snake venom arsenalf.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kartik Sunagar

    Full Text Available Neurotrophins are a diverse class of structurally related proteins, essential for neuronal development, survival, plasticity and regeneration. They are characterized by major family members, such as the nerve growth factors (NGF, brain-derived neurotrophic factors (BDNF and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3, which have been demonstrated here to lack coding sequence variations and follow the regime of negative selection, highlighting their extremely important conserved role in vertebrate homeostasis. However, in stark contrast, venom NGF secreted as part of the chemical arsenal of the venomous advanced snake family Elapidae (and to a lesser extent Viperidae have characteristics consistent with the typical accelerated molecular evolution of venom components. This includes a rapid rate of diversification under the significant influence of positive-selection, with the majority of positively-selected sites found in the secreted β-polypeptide chain (74% and on the molecular surface of the protein (92%, while the core structural and functional residues remain highly constrained. Such focal mutagenesis generates active residues on the toxin molecular surface, which are capable of interacting with novel biological targets in prey to induce a myriad of pharmacological effects. We propose that caenophidian NGFs could participate in prey-envenoming by causing a massive release of chemical mediators from mast cells to mount inflammatory reactions and increase vascular permeability, thereby aiding the spread of other toxins and/or by acting as proapoptotic factors. Despite their presence in reptilian venom having been known for over 60 years, this is the first evidence that venom-secreted NGF follows the molecular evolutionary pattern of other venom components, and thus likely participates in prey-envenomation.

  11. Characterization of Small HSPs from Anemonia viridis Reveals Insights into Molecular Evolution of Alpha Crystallin Genes among Cnidarians

    OpenAIRE

    Nicosia, Aldo; Maggio, Teresa; Mazzola, Salvatore; Gianguzza, Fabrizio; Cuttitta, Angela; Costa, Salvatore

    2014-01-01

    Gene family encoding small Heat-Shock Proteins (sHSPs containing α-crystallin domain) are found both in prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms; however, there is limited knowledge of their evolution. In this study, two small HSP genes termed AvHSP28.6 and AvHSP27, both organized in one intron and two exons, were characterised in the Mediterranean snakelocks anemone Anemonia viridis. The release of the genome sequence of Hydra magnipapillata and Nematostella vectensis enabled a comprehensive stu...

  12. A logic-based dynamic modeling approach to explicate the evolution of the central dogma of molecular biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jafari, Mohieddin; Ansari-Pour, Naser; Azimzadeh, Sadegh; Mirzaie, Mehdi

    It is nearly half a century past the age of the introduction of the Central Dogma (CD) of molecular biology. This biological axiom has been developed and currently appears to be all the more complex. In this study, we modified CD by adding further species to the CD information flow and mathematically expressed CD within a dynamic framework by using Boolean network based on its present-day and 1965 editions. We show that the enhancement of the Dogma not only now entails a higher level of complexity, but it also shows a higher level of robustness, thus far more consistent with the nature of biological systems. Using this mathematical modeling approach, we put forward a logic-based expression of our conceptual view of molecular biology. Finally, we show that such biological concepts can be converted into dynamic mathematical models using a logic-based approach and thus may be useful as a framework for improving static conceptual models in biology.

  13. Molecular cytogenetics of the Androctonus scorpions: an oasis of calm in turbulent karyotype evolution of the diverse family Buthidae

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Sadílek, D.; Nguyen, Petr; Koç, H.; Kovařík, F.; Yağmur, E. A.; Šťáhlavský, F.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 115, č. 1 (2015), s. 69-76 ISSN 0024-4066 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GP14-35819P Grant - others:Mšk ČR(CZ) SVV 260 087/2014 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : 18S rDNA * FISH * holocentric chromosomes Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 1.984, year: 2015 http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/bij.12488/epdf

  14. Molecular evolution of proopiomelanocortin in early vertebrates; Gensakudobutsu hoya no shinkeisen ni saguru fukujinhishitsu sigeki horumon no kigen to bunshi shinka

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Takahashi, Akiyoshi [Kitasato University, Tokyo (Japan). School of Fishieries Sciences

    1998-12-16

    Proolpiomelanocortin (POMC) is a precursor for melanotrophin (MSH) and {beta}-endorphin that regulate stress and environmental adaptation. The present study was undertaken to provide insight into the molecular evolution of POMC in the early vertebrates by examining structures of POMCs in protochordates and in ancient and advanced fishes. Lungfish POMC is similar to tetrapods because they include three MSHs ({alpha}, {beta} and {gamma}) and {beta}-endorphin. In contrast to the consistent occurrence of three MSHs in tetrapods and dipnoans, fish POMC varies in the number of MSH types it contains. POMCs of tuna and sturgeon lack {gamma}-MSH whereas POMC of dogfish has a forth ({delta}) MSH in addition to {alpha}-, {beta}- and {gamma}-MSH. b-endorphin, however, occurs in all vertebrates. These results suggest that POMC has evolved by duplication, insertion and deletion of MSH genomic segments. The diversity of MSH may have contributed to development of the ability to adapt to different conditions. (author)

  15. Stress evolution of GaN/AlN heterostructure grown on 6H-SiC substrate by plasma assisted molecular beam epitaxy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agrawal, M.; Ravikiran, L.; Dharmarasu, N.; Radhakrishnan, K.; Karthikeyan, G. S.; Zheng, Y.

    2017-01-01

    The stress evolution of GaN/AlN heterostructure grown on 6H-SiC substrate by plasma assisted molecular beam epitaxy (PA-MBE) has been studied. AlN nucleation layer and GaN layer were grown as a function of III/V ratio. GaN/AlN structure is found to form buried cracks when AlN is grown in the intermediate growth regime(III/V˜1)and GaN is grown under N-rich growth regime (III/VHEMT) heterostructure was demonstrated on 2-inch SiC that showed good two dimensional electron gas (2DEG) properties with a sheet resistance of 480 Ω/sq, mobility of 1280 cm2/V.s and sheet carrier density of 1×1013 cm-2.

  16. Testing the neutral theory of molecular evolution using genomic data: a comparison of the human and bovine transcriptome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    McCulloch Alan

    2006-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Despite growing evidence of rapid evolution in protein coding genes, the contribution of positive selection to intra- and interspecific differences in protein coding regions of the genome is unclear. We attempted to see if genes coding for secreted proteins and genes with narrow expression, specifically those preferentially expressed in the mammary gland, have diverged at a faster rate between domestic cattle (Bos taurus and humans (Homo sapiens than other genes and whether positive selection is responsible. Using a large data set, we identified groups of genes based on secretion and expression patterns and compared them for the rate of nonsynonymous (dN and synonymous (dS substitutions per site and the number of radical (Dr and conservative (Dc amino acid substitutions. We found evidence of rapid evolution in genes with narrow expression, especially for those expressed in the liver and mammary gland and for genes coding for secreted proteins. We compared common human polymorphism data with human-cattle divergence and found that genes with high evolutionary rates in human-cattle divergence also had a large number of common human polymorphisms. This argues against positive selection causing rapid divergence in these groups of genes. In most cases dN/dS ratios were lower in human-cattle divergence than in common human polymorphism presumably due to differences in the effectiveness of purifying selection between long-term divergence and short-term polymorphism.

  17. Molecular phylogeny of Gymnocalycium (Cactaceae): assessment of alternative infrageneric systems, a new subgenus, and trends in the evolution of the genus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demaio, Pablo H; Barfuss, Michael H J; Kiesling, Roberto; Till, Walter; Chiapella, Jorge O

    2011-11-01

    The South American genus Gymnocalycium (Cactoideae-Trichocereae) demonstrates how the sole use of morphological data in Cactaceae results in conflicts in assessing phylogeny, constructing a taxonomic system, and analyzing trends in the evolution of the genus. Molecular phylogenetic analysis was performed using parsimony and Bayesian methods on a 6195-bp data matrix of plastid DNA sequences (atpI-atpH, petL-psbE, trnK-matK, trnT-trnL-trnF) of 78 samples, including 52 species and infraspecific taxa representing all the subgenera of Gymnocalycium. We assessed morphological character evolution using likelihood methods to optimize characters on a Bayesian tree and to reconstruct possible ancestral states. The results of the phylogenetic study confirm the monophyly of the genus, while supporting overall the available infrageneric classification based on seed morphology. Analysis showed the subgenera Microsemineum and Macrosemineum to be polyphyletic and paraphyletic. Analysis of morphological characters showed a tendency toward reduction of stem size, reduction in quantity and hardiness of spines, increment of seed size, development of napiform roots, and change from juicy and colorful fruits to dry and green fruits. Gymnocalycium saglionis is the only species of Microsemineum and a new name is required to identify the clade including the remaining species of Microsemineum; we propose the name Scabrosemineum in agreement with seed morphology. Identifying morphological trends and environmental features allows for a better understanding of the events that might have influenced the diversification of the genus.

  18. A novel C-type lysozyme from Mytilus galloprovincialis: insight into innate immunity and molecular evolution of invertebrate C-type lysozymes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qing Wang

    Full Text Available A c-type lysozyme (named as MgCLYZ gene was cloned from the mussel Mytilus galloprovincialis. Blast analysis indicated that MgCLYZ was a salivary c-type lysozyme which was mainly found in insects. The nucleotide sequence of MgCLYZ was predicted to encode a polypeptide of 154 amino acid residues with the signal peptide comprising the first 24 residues. The deduced mature peptide of MgCLYZ was of a calculated molecular weight of 14.4 kD and a theoretical isoelectric point (pI of 8.08. Evolution analysis suggested that bivalve branch of the invertebrate c-type lysozymes phylogeny tree underwent positive selection during evolution. By quantitative real-time RT-PCR (qRT-PCR analysis, MgCLYZ transcript was widely detected in all examined tissues and responded sensitively to bacterial challenge in hemocytes and hepatopancreas. The optimal temperature and pH of recombinant MgCLYZ (rMgCLYZ were 20°C and 4, respectively. The rMgCLYZ displayed lytic activities against Gram-positive bacteria including Micrococcus luteus and Staphyloccocus aureus, and Gram-negative bacteria including Vibrio anguillarum, Enterobacter cloacae, Pseudomonas putida, Proteus mirabilis and Bacillus aquimaris. These results suggest that MgCLYZ perhaps play an important role in innate immunity of M. galloprovincialis, and invertebrate c-type lysozymes might be under positive selection in a species-specific manner during evolution for undergoing adaptation to different environment and diverse pathogens.

  19. The Molecular Epidemiology and Evolution of Murray Valley Encephalitis Virus: Recent Emergence of Distinct Sub-lineages of the Dominant Genotype 1.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David T Williams

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Recent increased activity of the mosquito-borne Murray Valley encephalitis virus (MVEV in Australia has renewed concerns regarding its potential to spread and cause disease.To better understand the genetic relationships between earlier and more recent circulating strains, patterns of virus movement, as well as the molecular basis of MVEV evolution, complete pre-membrane (prM and Envelope (Env genes were sequenced from sixty-six MVEV strains from different regions of the Australasian region, isolated over a sixty year period (1951-2011. Phylogenetic analyses indicated that, of the four recognized genotypes, only G1 and G2 are contemporary. G1 viruses were dominant over the sampling period and found across the known geographic range of MVEV. Two distinct sub-lineages of G1 were observed (1A and 1B. Although G1B strains have been isolated from across mainland Australia, Australian G1A strains have not been detected outside northwest Australia. Similarly, G2 is comprised of only Western Australian isolates from mosquitoes, suggesting G1B and G2 viruses have geographic or ecological restrictions. No evidence of recombination was found and a single amino acid substitution in the Env protein (S332G was found to be under positive selection, while several others were found to be under directional evolution. Evolutionary analyses indicated that extant genotypes of MVEV began to diverge from a common ancestor approximately 200 years ago. G2 was the first genotype to diverge, followed by G3 and G4, and finally G1, from which subtypes G1A and G1B diverged between 1964 and 1994.The results of this study provides new insights into the genetic diversity and evolution of MVEV. The demonstration of co-circulation of all contemporary genetic lineages of MVEV in northwestern Australia, supports the contention that this region is the enzootic focus for this virus.

  20. The IGS-ETS in Bacillus (Insecta Phasmida: molecular characterization and the relevance of sex in ribosomal DNA evolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Passamonti Marco

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background DNA encoding for ribosomal RNA (rDNA is arranged in tandemly-repeated subunits, each containing ribosomal genes and non-coding spacers. Because tandemly-repeated, rDNA evolves under a balanced influence of selection and "concerted evolution", which homogenizes rDNA variants over the genome (through genomic turnover mechanisms and the population (through sexuality. Results In this paper we analyzed the IGS-ETS of the automictic parthenogen Bacillus atticus and the bisexual B. grandii, two closely related stick-insect species. Both species share the same IGS-ETS structure and sequence, including a peculiar head-to-tail array of putative transcription enhancers, here named Bag530. Sequence variability of both IGS-ETS and Bag530 evidenced a neat geographic and subspecific clustering in B. grandii, while B. atticus shows a little but evident geographic structure. This was an unexpected result, since the parthenogen B. atticus should lack sequence fixation through sexuality. In B. atticus a new variant might spread in a given geographic area through colonization by an all-female clone, but we cannot discard the hypothesis that B. atticus was actually a bisexual taxon in that area at the time the new variant appeared. Moreover, a gene conversion event between two Bag530 variants of B. grandii benazzii and B. grandii maretimi suggested that rRNA might evolve according to the so-called "library hypothesis" model, through differential amplification of rDNA variants in different taxa. Conclusion On the whole, Bacillus rDNA evolution appears to be under a complex array of interacting mechanisms: homogenization may be achieved through genomic turnover that stabilizes DNA-binding protein interactions but, simultaneously, new sequence variants can be adopted, either by direct appearance of newly mutated repeats, or by competition among repeats, so that both DNA-binding proteins and repeat variants drive each other's evolution. All this

  1. Visualization system: animation of the dynamic evolution of the molecular hydrogen cloud during its gravitational collapse in 3D

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Duarte P, R.; Klapp E, J.; Arreaga D, G.

    2006-01-01

    The results of a group of numeric simulations and a region of interest form a molecular hydrogen cloud that collapses under the action of their own force of graveness. For they are believed it two models the constant one and the gaussian with the profile of the density of the initial cloud and a barotropic equation of state that it allows the iso thermic change to adiabatic. For each pattern two values of critical density are used, a spectra of density interferences, obtaining a binary system, tertiary or even a quaternary one. The necessary programs explained in the methodology to generate the visualizations of the models are generated. (Author)

  2. Expansion and Functional Divergence of AP2 Group Genes in Spermatophytes Determined by Molecular Evolution and Arabidopsis Mutant Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pengkai Wang

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The APETALA2 (AP2 genes represent the AP2 group within a large group of DNA-binding proteins called AP2/EREBP. The AP2 gene is functional and necessary for flower development, stem cell maintenance, and seed development, whereas the other members of AP2 group redundantly affect flowering time. Here we study the phylogeny of AP2 group genes in spermatophytes. Spermatophyte AP2 group genes can be classified into AP2 and TOE types, six clades, and we found that the AP2 group homologs in gymnosperms belong to the AP2 type, whereas TOE types are absent, which indicates the AP2 type gene are more ancient and TOE type was split out of AP2 type and losing the major function. In Brassicaceae, the expansion of AP2 and TOE type lead to the gene number of AP2 group were up to six. Purifying selection appears to have been the primary driving force of spermatophyte AP2 group evolution, although positive selection occurred in the AP2 clade. The transition from exon to intron of AtAP2 in Arabidopsis mutant leads to the loss of gene function and the same situation was found in AtTOE2. Combining this evolutionary analysis and published research, the results suggest that typical AP2 group genes may first appear in gymnosperms and diverged in angiosperms, following expansion of group members and functional differentiation. In angiosperms, AP2 genes (AP2 clade inherited key functions from ancestors and other genes of AP2 group lost most function but just remained flowering time controlling in gene formation. In this study, the phylogenies of AP2 group genes in spermatophytes was analyzed, which supported the evidence for the research of gene functional evolution of AP2 group.

  3. The evolution of three types of indoleamine 2,3 dioxygenases in fungi with distinct molecular and biochemical characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuasa, Hajime J; Ball, Helen J

    2012-08-01

    Indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase (IDO) is a tryptophan-degrading enzyme and known as a mammalian immunosuppressive molecule. In fungi, the primary role of IDO is to supply nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD(+)) via the kynurenine pathway. We previously reported that the koji-mold, Aspergillus oryzae has two IDO genes, IDOα and IDOβ. In the present study, we found that A. oryzae also has the third IDO, IDOγ. These three-types of IDOs are widely distributed among the Pezizomycotina fungi, although the black truffle, Tuber melanosporum has only one corresponding gene to IDOα/IDOβ. The yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae has a single IDO gene. Generally, Pezizomycotina IDOα showed similar enzymatic properties to the yeast IDO, suggesting that the IDOα is a functional homologue of the S. cerevisiae IDO. In contrast to IDOα, the K(m) value of IDOβ is higher. However, the reaction velocity of IDOβ is very fast, resulting in comparable or higher catalytic efficiency than IDOα. Thus IDOβ may functionally substitute for IDOα in fungal L-Trp metabolism. The enzymatic activity of IDOγ was comparatively very low with the values of enzymatic parameters comparable to vertebrate IDO2 enzymes. IDOα and IDOβ have similar gene structures, suggesting that they were generated by gene duplication which occurred rather early in Pezizomycotina evolution, although the timing of the duplication remains debatable. In contrast, the phylogenetic trees suggest that IDOγs form an evolutionarily distinct group of IDO enzymes, with a closer relationship to group I bacterial IDOs than other fungal IDOs. The ancestor of the IDOγ family is likely to have diverged from other eukaryotic IDOs at a very early stage of eukaryotic evolution. Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  4. A logic-based dynamic modeling approach to explicate the evolution of the central dogma of molecular biology.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohieddin Jafari

    Full Text Available It is nearly half a century past the age of the introduction of the Central Dogma (CD of molecular biology. This biological axiom has been developed and currently appears to be all the more complex. In this study, we modified CD by adding further species to the CD information flow and mathematically expressed CD within a dynamic framework by using Boolean network based on its present-day and 1965 editions. We show that the enhancement of the Dogma not only now entails a higher level of complexity, but it also shows a higher level of robustness, thus far more consistent with the nature of biological systems. Using this mathematical modeling approach, we put forward a logic-based expression of our conceptual view of molecular biology. Finally, we show that such biological concepts can be converted into dynamic mathematical models using a logic-based approach and thus may be useful as a framework for improving static conceptual models in biology.

  5. Dynamical Timescale of Pre-collapse Evolution Inferred from Chemical Distribution in the Taurus Molecular Cloud-1 (TMC-1) Filament

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Choi, Yunhee; Lee, Jeong-Eun [School of Space Research, Kyung Hee University, 1732, Deogyeong-daero, Giheung-gu, Yongin-si, Gyeonggi-do 17104 (Korea, Republic of); Bourke, Tyler L. [Square Kilometre Array Organisation, Jodrell Bank Observatory, Lower Withington, Cheshire SK11 9DL (United Kingdom); II, Neal J. Evans, E-mail: yunhee.choi@khu.ac.kr, E-mail: jeongeun.lee@khu.ac.kr [Department of Astronomy, University of Texas at Austin, 2515 Speedway, Stop C1400, Austin, TX 78712-1205 (United States)

    2017-04-01

    We present observations and analyses of the low-mass star-forming region, Taurus Molecular Cloud-1 (TMC-1). CS ( J = 2–1)/N{sub 2}H{sup +} ( J = 1–0) and C{sup 17}O ( J = 2–1)/C{sup 18}O ( J = 2–1) were observed with the Five College Radio Astronomy Observatory and the Seoul Radio Astronomy Observatory, respectively. In addition, Spitzer infrared data and 1.2 mm continuum data observed with Max-Planck Millimetre Bolometer are used. We also perform chemical modeling to investigate the relative molecular distributions of the TMC-1 filament. Based on Spitzer observations, there is no young stellar object along the TMC-1 filament, while five Class II and one Class I young stellar objects are identified outside the filament. The comparison between column densities calculated from dust continuum and C{sup 17}O 2–1 line emission shows that CO is depleted much more significantly in the ammonia peak than in the cyanopolyyne peak, while the column densities calculated from the dust continuum are similar at the two peaks. N{sub 2}H{sup +} is not depleted much in either peak. According to our chemical calculation, the differential chemical distribution in the two peaks can be explained by different timescales required to reach the same density, i.e., by different dynamical processes.

  6. Molecular epidemiology and evolution of avian infectious bronchitis virus in Spain over a fourteen-year period.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dolz, Roser; Pujols, Joan; Ordóñez, German; Porta, Ramon; Majó, Natàlia

    2008-04-25

    An in-depth molecular study of infectious bronchitis viruses (IBV) with particular interest in evolutionary aspects of IBV in Spain was carried out in the present study based on the S1 gene molecular characterization of twenty-six Spanish strains isolated over a fourteen-year period. Four genotypes were identified based on S1 gene sequence analyses and phylogenetic studies. A drastic virus population shift was demonstrated along time and the novel Italy 02 serotype was shown to have displaced the previous predominant serotype 4/91 in the field. Detailed analyses of synonymous to non-synonymous ratio of the S1 gene sequences of this new serotype Italy 02 suggested positive selection pressures might have contributed to the successful establishment of Italy 02 serotype in our country. In addition, differences on the fitness abilities of new emergent genotypes were indicated. Furthermore, intergenic sequences (IGs)-like motifs within S1 gene sequences of IBV isolates were suggested to enhance the recombination abilities of certain serotypes.

  7. Molecular Evolution of the Nuclear Factor (Erythroid-Derived 2)-Like 2 Gene Nrf2 in Old World Fruit Bats (Chiroptera: Pteropodidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Qiuyuan; Zhu, Lei; Liu, Di; Irwin, David M; Zhang, Shuyi; Pan, Yi-Hsuan

    2016-01-01

    Mammals developed antioxidant systems to defend against oxidative damage in their daily life. Enzymatic antioxidants and low molecular weight antioxidants (LMWAs) constitute major parts of the antioxidant systems. Nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2)-like 2 (Nrf2, encoded by the Nrf2 gene) is a central transcriptional regulator, regulating transcription, of many antioxidant enzymes. Frugivorous bats eat large amounts of fruits that contain high levels of LMWAs such as vitamin C, thus, a reliance on LMWAs might greatly reduce the need for antioxidant enzymes in comparison to insectivorous bats. Therefore, it is possible that frugivorous bats have a reduced need for Nrf2 function due to their substantial intake of diet-antioxidants. To test whether the Nrf2 gene has undergone relaxed evolution in fruit-eating bats, we obtained Nrf2 sequences from 16 species of bats, including four Old World fruit bats (Pteropodidae) and one New World fruit bat (Phyllostomidae). Our molecular evolutionary analyses revealed changes in the selection pressure acting on Nrf2 gene and identified seven specific amino acid substitutions that occurred on the ancestral lineage leading to Old World fruit bats. Biochemical experiments were conducted to examine Nrf2 in Old World fruit bats and showed that the amount of catalase, which is regulated by Nrf2, was significantly lower in the brain, heart and liver of Old World fruit bats despite higher levels of Nrf2 protein in Old World fruit bats. Computational predictions suggest that three of these seven amino acid replacements might be deleterious to Nrf2 function. Therefore, the results suggest that Nrf2 gene might have experienced relaxed constraint in Old World fruit bats, however, we cannot rule out the possibility of positive selection. Our study provides the first data on the molecular adaptation of Nrf2 gene in frugivorous bats in compensation to the increased levels of LWMAs from their fruit-diet.

  8. Plant STAND P-loop NTPases: a current perspective of genome distribution, evolution, and function : Plant STAND P-loop NTPases: genomic organization, evolution, and molecular mechanism models contribute broadly to plant pathogen defense.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arya, Preeti; Acharya, Vishal

    2018-02-01

    STAND P-loop NTPase is the common weapon used by plant and other organisms from all three kingdoms of life to defend themselves against pathogen invasion. The purpose of this study is to review comprehensively the latest finding of plant STAND P-loop NTPase related to their genomic distribution, evolution, and their mechanism of action. Earlier, the plant STAND P-loop NTPase known to be comprised of only NBS-LRRs/AP-ATPase/NB-ARC ATPase. However, recent finding suggests that genome of early green plants comprised of two types of STAND P-loop NTPases: (1) mammalian NACHT NTPases and (2) NBS-LRRs. Moreover, YchF (unconventional G protein and members of P-loop NTPase) subfamily has been reported to be exceptionally involved in biotic stress (in case of Oryza sativa), thereby a novel member of STAND P-loop NTPase in green plants. The lineage-specific expansion and genome duplication events are responsible for abundance of plant STAND P-loop NTPases; where "moderate tandem and low segmental duplication" trajectory followed in majority of plant species with few exception (equal contribution of tandem and segmental duplication). Since the past decades, systematic research is being investigated into NBS-LRR function supported the direct recognition of pathogen or pathogen effectors by the latest models proposed via 'integrated decoy' or 'sensor domains' model. Here, we integrate the recently published findings together with the previous literature on the genomic distribution, evolution, and distinct models proposed for functional molecular mechanism of plant STAND P-loop NTPases.

  9. Ancient tetraploidy and slow molecular evolution in Scaphiophryne: ecological correlates of speciation mode in Malagasy relict amphibians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vences, Miguel; Aprea, Gennaro; Capriglione, Teresa; Andreone, Franco; Odierna, Gaetano

    2002-01-01

    Karyotypes of three microhylid frog species of the Malagasy relict genus Scaphiophryne were studied: Scaphiophryne gottlebei, S. madagascariensis and S. spinosa. The latter two showed a plesiomorphic ranoid karyotype of 2n = 26. In contrast, tetraploidy was demonstrated in S. gottlebei, which constitutes an exceptional state among Malagasy amphibians. A combination of different banding techniques and of rDNA-FISH provided evidence for allopolyploidy in the species and for a completed subsequent functional and structural diploidization. Phylogenetic analysis of mitochondrial 16S rDNA sequences revealed a significant deceleration of nucleotide substitution rates in Scaphiophryne. The tetraploidy of S. gottlebei probably occurred early in their radiation. Ecological and behavioural patterns of Scaphiophryne probably favoured intraspecific gene flow and hybridization events, thereby leading to slow molecular substitution rates and to allopolyploid chromosome speciation in S. gottlebei.

  10. Structural alterations in a component of cytochrome c oxidase and molecular evolution of pathogenic Neisseria in humans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marina Aspholm

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Three closely related bacterial species within the genus Neisseria are of importance to human disease and health. Neisseria meningitidis is a major cause of meningitis, while Neisseria gonorrhoeae is the agent of the sexually transmitted disease gonorrhea and Neisseria lactamica is a common, harmless commensal of children. Comparative genomics have yet to yield clear insights into which factors dictate the unique host-parasite relationships exhibited by each since, as a group, they display remarkable conservation at the levels of nucleotide sequence, gene content and synteny. Here, we discovered two rare alterations in the gene encoding the CcoP protein component of cytochrome cbb(3 oxidase that are phylogenetically informative. One is a single nucleotide polymorphism resulting in CcoP truncation that acts as a molecular signature for the species N. meningitidis. We go on to show that the ancestral ccoP gene arose by a unique gene duplication and fusion event and is specifically and completely distributed within species of the genus Neisseria. Surprisingly, we found that strains engineered to express either of the two CcoP forms conditionally differed in their capacity to support nitrite-dependent, microaerobic growth mediated by NirK, a nitrite reductase. Thus, we propose that changes in CcoP domain architecture and ensuing alterations in function are key traits in successive, adaptive radiations within these metapopulations. These findings provide a dramatic example of how rare changes in core metabolic proteins can be connected to significant macroevolutionary shifts. They also show how evolutionary change at the molecular level can be linked to metabolic innovation and its reversal as well as demonstrating how genotype can be used to infer alterations of the fitness landscape within a single host.

  11. xCOLD GASS: The Complete IRAM 30 m Legacy Survey of Molecular Gas for Galaxy Evolution Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saintonge, Amélie; Catinella, Barbara; Tacconi, Linda J.; Kauffmann, Guinevere; Genzel, Reinhard; Cortese, Luca; Davé, Romeel; Fletcher, Thomas J.; Graciá-Carpio, Javier; Kramer, Carsten; Heckman, Timothy M.; Janowiecki, Steven; Lutz, Katharina; Rosario, David; Schiminovich, David; Schuster, Karl; Wang, Jing; Wuyts, Stijn; Borthakur, Sanchayeeta; Lamperti, Isabella; Roberts-Borsani, Guido W.

    2017-12-01

    We introduce xCOLD GASS, a legacy survey providing a census of molecular gas in the local universe. Building on the original COLD GASS survey, we present here the full sample of 532 galaxies with CO (1–0) measurements from the IRAM 30 m telescope. The sample is mass-selected in the redshift interval 0.01 {10}9 {M}ȯ . The CO (1–0) flux measurements are complemented by observations of the CO (2–1) line with both the IRAM 30 m and APEX telescopes, H I observations from Arecibo, and photometry from SDSS, WISE, and GALEX. Combining the IRAM and APEX data, we find that the ratio of CO (2–1) to CO (1–0) luminosity for integrated measurements is {r}21=0.79+/- 0.03, with no systematic variations across the sample. The CO (1–0) luminosity function is constructed and best fit with a Schechter function with parameters {L}{CO}* =(7.77+/- 2.11)× {10}9 {{K}} {km} {{{s}}}-1 {{pc}}2, {φ }* =(9.84+/- 5.41)× {10}-4 {{Mpc}}-3, and α =-1.19+/- 0.05. With the sample now complete down to stellar masses of 109 {M}ȯ , we are able to extend our study of gas scaling relations and confirm that both molecular gas fractions ({f}{{{H}}2}) and depletion timescale ({t}{dep}({{{H}}}2)) vary with specific star formation rate (or offset from the star formation main sequence) much more strongly than they depend on stellar mass. Comparing the xCOLD GASS results with outputs from hydrodynamic and semianalytic models, we highlight the constraining power of cold gas scaling relations on models of galaxy formation.

  12. Temporal analysis of reassortment and molecular evolution of Cucumber mosaic virus: Extra clues from its segmented genome

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ohshima, Kazusato, E-mail: ohshimak@cc.saga-u.ac.jp [Laboratory of Plant Virology, Faculty of Agriculture, Saga University, Saga (Japan); The United Graduate School of Agricultural Sciences, Kagoshima University, Kagoshima (Japan); Matsumoto, Kosuke [Laboratory of Plant Virology, Faculty of Agriculture, Saga University, Saga (Japan); Yasaka, Ryosuke [Laboratory of Plant Virology, Faculty of Agriculture, Saga University, Saga (Japan); The United Graduate School of Agricultural Sciences, Kagoshima University, Kagoshima (Japan); Nishiyama, Mai; Soejima, Kenta [Laboratory of Plant Virology, Faculty of Agriculture, Saga University, Saga (Japan); Korkmaz, Savas [Department of Plant Protection, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Canakkale Onsekiz Mart, Canakkale (Turkey); Ho, Simon Y.W. [School of Biological Sciences, University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales (Australia); Gibbs, Adrian J. [Emeritus Faculty, Australian National University, Canberra (Australia); Takeshita, Minoru [Laboratory of Plant Pathology, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Miyazaki, Miyazaki (Japan)

    2016-01-15

    Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV) is a damaging pathogen of over 200 mono- and dicotyledonous crop species worldwide. It has the broadest known host range of any virus, but the timescale of its evolution is unknown. To investigate the evolutionary history of this virus, we obtained the genomic sequences of 40 CMV isolates from brassicas sampled in Iran, Turkey and Japan, and combined them with published sequences. Our synonymous ('silent') site analyses revealed that the present CMV population is the progeny of a single ancestor existing 1550–2600 years ago, but that the population mostly radiated 295–545 years ago. We found that the major CMV lineages are not phylogeographically confined, but that recombination and reassortment is restricted to local populations and that no reassortant lineage is more than 251 years old. Our results highlight the different evolutionary patterns seen among viral pathogens of brassica crops across the world. - Highlights: • Present-day CMV lineages had a most recent common ancestor 1550–2600 years ago. • The CMV population mostly radiated less than 295–545 years ago. • No reassortant found in the present populations is more than 251 years old. • The open-reading frames evolve at around 2.3–4.7×10{sup −4} substitutions/site/year. • Synonymous codons of CMV seem to have a more precise temporal signal than all codons.

  13. The evolution of menstruation: a new model for genetic assimilation: explaining molecular origins of maternal responses to fetal invasiveness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emera, Deena; Romero, Roberto; Wagner, Günter

    2012-01-01

    Why do humans menstruate while most mammals do not? Here, we present our answer to this long-debated question, arguing that (i) menstruation occurs as a mechanistic consequence of hormone-induced differentiation of the endometrium (referred to as spontaneous decidualization, or SD); (ii) SD evolved because of maternal-fetal conflict; and (iii) SD evolved by genetic assimilation of the decidualization reaction, which is induced by the fetus in non-menstruating species. The idea that menstruation occurs as a consequence of SD has been proposed in the past, but here we present a novel hypothesis on how SD evolved. We argue that decidualization became genetically stabilized in menstruating lineages, allowing females to prepare for pregnancy without any signal from the fetus. We present three models for the evolution of SD by genetic assimilation, based on recent advances in our understanding of the mechanisms of endometrial differentiation and implantation. Testing these models will ultimately shed light on the evolutionary significance of menstruation, as well as on the etiology of human reproductive disorders like endometriosis and recurrent pregnancy loss. Copyright © 2012 WILEY Periodicals, Inc.

  14. Impact of gene molecular evolution on phylogenetic reconstruction: a case study in the rosids (Superorder Rosanae, Angiosperms).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilu, Khidir W; Black, Chelsea M; Oza, Dipan

    2014-01-01

    Rate of substitution of genomic regions is among the most debated intrinsic features that impact phylogenetic informativeness. However, this variable is also coupled with rates of nonsynonymous substitutions that underscore the nature and degree of selection on the selected genes. To empirically address these variables, we constructed four completely overlapping data sets of plastid matK, atpB, rbcL, and mitochondrial matR genes and used the rosid lineage (angiosperms) as a working platform. The genes differ in combinations of overall rates of nucleotide and amino acid substitutions. Tree robustness, homoplasy, accuracy in contrast to a reference tree, and phylogenetic informativeness are evaluated. The rapidly evolving/unconstrained matK faired best, whereas remaining genes varied in degrees of contribution to rosid phylogenetics across the lineage's 108 million years evolutionary history. Phylogenetic accuracy was low with the slowly evolving/unconstrained matR despite least amount of homoplasy. Third codon positions contributed the highest amount of parsimony informative sites, resolution and informativeness, but magnitude varied with gene mode of evolution. These findings are in clear contrast with the views that rapidly evolving regions and the 3rd codon position have inevitable negative impact on phylogenetic reconstruction at deep historic level due to accumulation of multiple hits and subsequent elevation in homoplasy and saturation. Relaxed evolutionary constraint in rapidly evolving genes distributes substitutions across codon positions, an evolutionary mode expected to reduce the frequency of multiple hits. These findings should be tested at deeper evolutionary histories.

  15. Molecular phylogenetics of Echinopsis (Cactaceae): Polyphyly at all levels and convergent evolution of pollination modes and growth forms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlumpberger, Boris O; Renner, Susanne S

    2012-08-01

    In its current circumscription, Echinopsis with 100-150 species is one of the largest and morphologically most diverse genera of Cactaceae. This diversity and an absence of correlated characters have resulted in numerous attempts to subdivide Echinopsis into more homogeneous subgroups. To infer natural species groups in this alliance, we here provide a plastid phylogeny and use it to infer changes in growth form, pollination mode, and ploidy level. We sequenced 3800 nucleotides of chloroplast DNA from 162 plants representing 144 species and subspecies. The sample includes the type species of all genera close to, or included in, Echinopsis as well as a dense sample of other genera of the Trichocereeae and further outgroups. New and published chromosome counts were compiled and traced on the phylogeny, as were pollination modes and growth habits. A maximum likelihood phylogeny confirms that Echinopsis s.l. is not monophyletic nor are any of the previously recognized genera that have more than one species. Pollination mode and, to a lesser extent, growth habit are evolutionarily labile, and diploidy is the rule in Echinopsis s.l., with the few polyploids clustered in just a few clades. The use of evolutionary labile floral traits and growth habit has led to nonnatural classifications. Taxonomic realignments are required, but further study of less evolutionary labile traits suitable for circumscribing genera are needed. Surprisingly, polyploidy seems infrequent in the Echinopsis alliance and hybridization may thus be of minor relevance in the evolution of this clade.

  16. Redundancy and molecular evolution: the rapid Induction of bone formation by the mammalian transforming growth factor-β3 isoform

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    Ugo Ripamonti

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The soluble osteogenic molecular signals of the transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β supergene family are the molecular bases of the induction of bone formation and postnatal bone tissue morphogenesis with translation into clinical contexts. The mammalian TGF-β3 isoform, a pleiotropic member of the family, controls a vast array of biological processes including the induction of bone formation. Recombinant hTGF-β3 induces substantial bone formation when implanted with either collagenous bone matrices or coral-derived macroporous bioreactors in the rectus abdominis muscle of the non-human primate Papio ursinus. In marked contrast, the three mammalian TGF-βs do not initiate the induction of bone formation in rodents and lagomorphs. The induction of bone by hTGF-β3/preloaded bioreactors is orchestrated by inducing fibrin-fibronectin rings that structurally organize tissue patterning and morphogenesis within the macroporous spaces. Induced advancing extracellular matrix rings provide the structural anchorage for hyper chromatic cells, interpreted as differentiating osteoblasts re-programmed by hTGF-β3 from invading myoblastic and/or pericytic differentiated cells. Runx2 and Osteocalcin expression are significantly up-regulated correlating to multiple invading cells differentiating into the osteoblastic phenotype. Bioreactors pre-loaded with recombinant human Noggin (hNoggin, a BMPs antagonist, show down-regulation of BMP-2 and other profiled osteogenic proteins’ genes resulting in minimal bone formation. Coral-derived macroporous constructs preloaded with binary applications of hTGF-β3 and hNoggin also show down-regulation of BMP-2 with the induction of limited bone formation. The induction of bone formation by hTGF-β3 is via the BMPs pathway and it is thus blocked by hNoggin. Our systematic studies in Papio ursinus with translational hTGF-β3 in large cranio-mandibulo-facial defects in humans are now requesting the re-evaluation of Bone

  17. The evolution of endometrial carcinoma classification through application of immunohistochemistry and molecular diagnostics: past, present and future.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goebel, Emily A; Vidal, August; Matias-Guiu, Xavier; Blake Gilks, C

    2017-12-12

    Uterine cancer was first subclassified based on anatomic site, separating those tumours arising from the endometrium from cervical cancers. There was then further subclassification of endometrial cancers based on cell type, and this correlated with the Type I and Type II categories identified through the epidemiological studies of Bokhman, with endometrioid carcinoma corresponding (approximately) to Type I and serous carcinoma to Type II. These histotypes are not clearly separable in practice, however, with considerable interobserver variability in histotype diagnosis, especially for high-grade tumours. There followed studies of immunomarkers and then mutational studies of single genes, in attempts to improve subclassification. While these have revealed significant differences in protein expression and mutation profiles between endometrioid and serous carcinomas, there is also considerable overlap, so that there remain challenges in subclassification of endometrial carcinoma. Gene panel testing, using next-generation sequencing, was applied to endometrial cancers and highlighted that there are tumours that show genetic alterations intermediate between classic Type I/endometrioid and Type II/serous carcinomas. The Cancer Genome Atlas studies of endometrioid and serous carcinoma offered revolutionary insight into the subclassification of endometrial carcinoma, i.e. that there are four distinct categories of endometrial carcinoma, rather than two, based on genomic architecture. In this review, we provide an overview of immunohistochemical and molecular markers in endometrial carcinoma and comment on the important future directions in endometrial carcinoma subclassification arising from The Cancer Genome Atlas results.

  18. Clinical and ERG data in a family with autosomal dominant RP and Pro-347-Arg mutation in the rhodopsin gene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niemeyer, G; Trüb, P; Schinzel, A; Gal, A

    1992-01-01

    In a family with autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa, documented over six generations, a previously undescribed point mutation in the rhodopsin gene could be identified. The mutation found in the six affected members examined but in none of the controls, including healthy members of the family, was a point mutation in codon 347 predicting a substitution of the amino acid arginine for proline, designated Pro-347-Arg. Six affected members from two generations were examined clinically and with ganzfeld rod and cone electroretinography. The cone and, more dramatically, the rod electroretinograms were reduced to residual b-wave amplitudes or were non-detectable as early as ages 18 to 22 years. The Pro-347-Arg mutation resulted in a subjectively and clinically homogeneous phenotype: early onset of night blindness before age 11, relatively preserved usable visual fields until about age 30, blindness at ages 40 to 60, and change from an initial apparently sine pigmento to a hyperpigmented and atrophic fundus picture between 30 and 50 years of age.

  19. Molecular Characterization, Evolution, and Expression Profiling of the Dirigent (DIR Family Genes in Chinese White Pear (Pyrus bretschneideri

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    Xi Cheng

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Stone cells content and size are the key factors determining the internal quality of the pear fruit. Synthesis of lignin and thickening of secondary cell wall are the keys to the development of stone cells. The polymerization of monolignols and secondary cell wall formation requires the participation of dirigent proteins (DIRs. In recent years, DIR family have been studied in higher plants, but lack of comprehensive study in the pear DIR (PbDIR family. This study focuses on the identification and analysis of PbDIR family for the first time. We identified 35 PbDIRs from the pear genome, 89% of which are intronless genes. Phylogenetic tree and chromosome localization analysis showed that 35 PbDIRs were divided into four subfamilies (DIR-a, -b/d, -e, and -g and irregularly distributed among 10 chromosomes. In addition, we identified 29, 26, and 14 DIRs from the other three Rosids (peach, Mei, and grape, respectively. Interspecies microsynteny analysis revealed the collinear gene pairs between pear and peach are the most. Temporal expression analysis showed that the expression changes of seven PbDIRs (DIR-a subfamily: PbDIR4 and PbDIR5; DIR-b/d subfamily: PbDIR11; DIR-g subfamily: PbDIR19; DIR-e subfamily: PbDIR23, 25 and 26 in fruits were consistent with the changes of fruit lignin and stone cells contents. In addition, the subfamily of PbDIRs in fruits showed significant responses after treatment with ABA, SA, and MeJA. According to the protein tertiary structure, key amino acid residues and expression patterns analysis found that PbDIR4 might be involved in the metabolism of lignin and related to stone cells contents in pear fruits. In this study, we systematically analyzed the structure, evolution, function and expression of PbDIR family, which not only confirmed the characteristics of PbDIR family, but also laid the foundation for revealing the role of DIR in pear stone cell development and lignin polymerization.

  20. Inversion of allosteric effect of arginine on N-acetylglutamate synthase, a molecular marker for evolution of tetrapods

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    Cabrera-Luque Juan

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The efficient conversion of ammonia, a potent neurotoxin, into non-toxic metabolites was an essential adaptation that allowed animals to move from the aquatic to terrestrial biosphere. The urea cycle converts ammonia into urea in mammals, amphibians, turtles, snails, worms and many aquatic animals and requires N-acetylglutamate (NAG, an essential allosteric activator of carbamylphosphate synthetase I (CPSI in mammals and amphibians, and carbamylphosphate synthetase III (CPSIII in fish and invertebrates. NAG-dependent CPSI and CPSIII catalyze the formation of carbamylphosphate in the first and rate limiting step of ureagenesis. NAG is produced enzymatically by N-acetylglutamate synthase (NAGS, which is also found in bacteria and plants as the first enzyme of arginine biosynthesis. Arginine is an allosteric inhibitor of microbial and plant NAGS, and allosteric activator of mammalian NAGS. Results Information from mutagenesis studies of E. coli and P. aeruginosa NAGS was combined with structural information from the related bacterial N-acetylglutamate kinases to identify four residues in mammalian NAGS that interact with arginine. Substitutions of these four residues were engineered in mouse NAGS and into the vertebrate-like N-acetylglutamate synthase-kinase (NAGS-K of Xanthomonas campestris, which is inhibited by arginine. All mutations resulted in arginine losing the ability to activate mouse NAGS, and inhibit X. campestris NAGS-K. To examine at what point in evolution inversion of arginine effect on NAGS occur, we cloned NAGS from fish and frogs and examined the arginine response of their corresponding proteins. Fish NAGS were partially inhibited by arginine and frog NAGS were activated by arginine. Conclusion Difference in arginine effect on bacterial and mammalian NAGS most likely stems from the difference in the type of conformational change triggered by arginine binding to these proteins. The change from arginine

  1. Molecular Genetic Analysis and Evolution of Segment 7 in Rice Black-Streaked Dwarf Virus in China.

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    Yu Zhou

    Full Text Available Rice black-streaked dwarf virus (RBSDV causes maize rough dwarf disease or rice black-streaked dwarf disease and can lead to severe yield losses in maize and rice. To analyse RBSDV evolution, codon usage bias and genetic structure were investigated in 111 maize and rice RBSDV isolates from eight geographic locations in 2013 and 2014. The linear dsRNA S7 is A+U rich, with overall codon usage biased toward codons ending with A (A3s, S7-1: 32.64%, S7-2: 29.95% or U (U3s, S7-1: 44.18%, S7-2: 46.06%. Effective number of codons (Nc values of 45.63 in S7-1 (the first open reading frame of S7 and 39.96 in S7-2 (the second open reading frame of S7 indicate low degrees of RBSDV-S7 codon usage bias, likely driven by mutational bias regardless of year, host, or geographical origin. Twelve optimal codons were detected in S7. The nucleotide diversity (π of S7 sequences in 2013 isolates (0.0307 was significantly higher than in 2014 isolates (0.0244, P = 0.0226. The nucleotide diversity (π of S7 sequences in isolates from Jinan (0.0391 was higher than that from the other seven locations (P < 0.01. Only one S7 recombinant was detected in Baoding. RBSDV isolates could be phylogenetically classified into two groups according to S7 sequences, and further classified into two subgroups. S7-1 and S7-2 were under negative and purifying selection, with respective Ka/Ks ratios of 0.0179 and 0.0537. These RBSDV populations were expanding (P < 0.01 as indicated by negative values for Tajima's D, Fu and Li's D, and Fu and Li's F. Genetic differentiation was detected in six RBSDV subpopulations (P < 0.05. Absolute Fst (0.0790 and Nm (65.12 between 2013 and 2014, absolute Fst (0.1720 and Nm (38.49 between maize and rice, and absolute Fst values of 0.0085-0.3069 and Nm values of 0.56-29.61 among these eight geographic locations revealed frequent gene flow between subpopulations. Gene flow between 2013 and 2014 was the most frequent.

  2. Fungicide-driven evolution and molecular basis of multidrug resistance in field populations of the grey mould fungus Botrytis cinerea.

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    Matthias Kretschmer

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available The grey mould fungus Botrytis cinerea causes losses of commercially important fruits, vegetables and ornamentals worldwide. Fungicide treatments are effective for disease control, but bear the risk of resistance development. The major resistance mechanism in fungi is target protein modification resulting in reduced drug binding. Multiple drug resistance (MDR caused by increased efflux activity is common in human pathogenic microbes, but rarely described for plant pathogens. Annual monitoring for fungicide resistance in field isolates from fungicide-treated vineyards in France and Germany revealed a rapidly increasing appearance of B. cinerea field populations with three distinct MDR phenotypes. All MDR strains showed increased fungicide efflux activity and overexpression of efflux transporter genes. Similar to clinical MDR isolates of Candida yeasts that are due to transcription factor mutations, all MDR1 strains were shown to harbor activating mutations in a transcription factor (Mrr1 that controls the gene encoding ABC transporter AtrB. MDR2 strains had undergone a unique rearrangement in the promoter region of the major facilitator superfamily transporter gene mfsM2, induced by insertion of a retrotransposon-derived sequence. MDR2 strains carrying the same rearranged mfsM2 allele have probably migrated from French to German wine-growing regions. The roles of atrB, mrr1 and mfsM2 were proven by the phenotypes of knock-out and overexpression mutants. As confirmed by sexual crosses, combinations of mrr1 and mfsM2 mutations lead to MDR3 strains with higher broad-spectrum resistance. An MDR3 strain was shown in field experiments to be selected against sensitive strains by fungicide treatments. Our data document for the first time the rising prevalence, spread and molecular basis of MDR populations in a major plant pathogen in agricultural environments. These populations will increase the risk of grey mould rot and hamper the effectiveness of

  3. Molecular evolution of the rice blast resistance gene Pi-ta in invasive weedy rice in the USA.

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    Seonghee Lee

    Full Text Available The Pi-ta gene in rice has been effectively used to control rice blast disease caused by Magnaporthe oryzae worldwide. Despite a number of studies that reported the Pi-ta gene in domesticated rice and wild species, little is known about how the Pi-ta gene has evolved in US weedy rice, a major weed of rice. To investigate the genome organization of the Pi-ta gene in weedy rice and its relationship to gene flow between cultivated and weedy rice in the US, we analyzed nucleotide sequence variation at the Pi-ta gene and its surrounding 2 Mb region in 156 weedy, domesticated and wild rice relatives. We found that the region at and around the Pi-ta gene shows very low genetic diversity in US weedy rice. The patterns of molecular diversity in weeds are more similar to cultivated rice (indica and aus, which have never been cultivated in the US, rather than the wild rice species, Oryza rufipogon. In addition, the resistant Pi-ta allele (Pi-ta found in the majority of US weedy rice belongs to the weedy group strawhull awnless (SH, suggesting a single source of origin for Pi-ta. Weeds with Pi-ta were resistant to two M. oryzae races, IC17 and IB49, except for three accessions, suggesting that component(s required for the Pi-ta mediated resistance may be missing in these accessions. Signatures of flanking sequences of the Pi-ta gene and SSR markers on chromosome 12 suggest that the susceptible pi-ta allele (pi-ta, not Pi-ta, has been introgressed from cultivated to weedy rice by out-crossing.

  4. Molecular characterization of Babesia peircei and Babesia ugwidiensis provides insight into the evolution and host specificity of avian piroplasmids

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    Michael J. Yabsley

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available There are 16 recognized species of avian-infecting Babesia spp. (Piroplasmida: Babesiidae. While the classification of piroplasmids has been historically based on morphological differences, geographic isolation and presumed host and/or vector specificities, recent studies employing gene sequence analysis have provided insight into their phylogenetic relationships and host distribution and specificity. In this study, we analyzed the sequences of the 18S rRNA gene and ITS-1 and ITS-2 regions of two Babesia species from South African seabirds: Babesia peircei from African penguins (Spheniscus demersus and Babesia ugwidiensis from Bank and Cape cormorants (Phalacrocorax neglectus and P. capensis, respectively. Our results show that avian Babesia spp. are not monophyletic, with at least three distinct phylogenetic groups. B. peircei and B. ugwidiensis are closely related, and fall within the same phylogenetic group as B. ardeae (from herons Ardea cinerea, B. poelea (from boobies Sula spp. and B. uriae (from murres Uria aalge. The validity of B. peircei and B. ugwidiensis as separate species is corroborated by both morphological and genetic evidence. On the other hand, our results indicate that B. poelea might be a synonym of B. peircei, which in turn would be a host generalist that infects seabirds from multiple orders. Further studies combining morphological and molecular methods are warranted to clarify the taxonomy, phylogeny and host distribution of avian piroplasmids. Keywords: Africa, Babesia, Piroplasmida, Phalacrocoracidae, Spheniscidae, Tick-borne pathogen

  5. Molecular Evolution of the Rice Blast Resistance Gene Pi-ta in Invasive Weedy Rice in the USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Seonghee; Jia, Yulin; Jia, Melissa; Gealy, David R.; Olsen, Kenneth M.; Caicedo, Ana L.

    2011-01-01

    The Pi-ta gene in rice has been effectively used to control rice blast disease caused by Magnaporthe oryzae worldwide. Despite a number of studies that reported the Pi-ta gene in domesticated rice and wild species, little is known about how the Pi-ta gene has evolved in US weedy rice, a major weed of rice. To investigate the genome organization of the Pi-ta gene in weedy rice and its relationship to gene flow between cultivated and weedy rice in the US, we analyzed nucleotide sequence variation at the Pi-ta gene and its surrounding 2 Mb region in 156 weedy, domesticated and wild rice relatives. We found that the region at and around the Pi-ta gene shows very low genetic diversity in US weedy rice. The patterns of molecular diversity in weeds are more similar to cultivated rice (indica and aus), which have never been cultivated in the US, rather than the wild rice species, Oryza rufipogon. In addition, the resistant Pi-ta allele (Pi-ta) found in the majority of US weedy rice belongs to the weedy group strawhull awnless (SH), suggesting a single source of origin for Pi-ta. Weeds with Pi-ta were resistant to two M. oryzae races, IC17 and IB49, except for three accessions, suggesting that component(s) required for the Pi-ta mediated resistance may be missing in these accessions. Signatures of flanking sequences of the Pi-ta gene and SSR markers on chromosome 12 suggest that the susceptible pi-ta allele (pi-ta), not Pi-ta, has been introgressed from cultivated to weedy rice by out-crossing. PMID:22043312

  6. Ab initio molecular dynamics simulations reveal localization and time evolution dynamics of an excess electron in heterogeneous CO{sub 2}–H{sub 2}O systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, Ping; Zhao, Jing; Liu, Jinxiang; Zhang, Meng; Bu, Yuxiang, E-mail: byx@sdu.edu.cn [School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Shandong University, Jinan, 250100 (China)

    2014-01-28

    In view of the important implications of excess electrons (EEs) interacting with CO{sub 2}–H{sub 2}O clusters in many fields, using ab initio molecular dynamics simulation technique, we reveal the structures and dynamics of an EE associated with its localization and subsequent time evolution in heterogeneous CO{sub 2}–H{sub 2}O mixed media. Our results indicate that although hydration can increase the electron-binding ability of a CO{sub 2} molecule, it only plays an assisting role. Instead, it is the bending vibrations that play the major role in localizing the EE. Due to enhanced attraction of CO{sub 2}, an EE can stably reside in the empty, low-lying π{sup *} orbital of a CO{sub 2} molecule via a localization process arising from its initial binding state. The localization is completed within a few tens of femtoseconds. After EE trapping, the ∠OCO angle of the core CO{sub 2}{sup −} oscillates in the range of 127°∼142°, with an oscillation period of about 48 fs. The corresponding vertical detachment energy of the EE is about 4.0 eV, which indicates extreme stability of such a CO{sub 2}-bound solvated EE in [CO{sub 2}(H{sub 2}O){sub n}]{sup −} systems. Interestingly, hydration occurs not only on the O atoms of the core CO{sub 2}{sup −} through formation of O⋯H–O H–bond(s), but also on the C atom, through formation of a C⋯H–O H–bond. In the latter binding mode, the EE cloud exhibits considerable penetration to the solvent water molecules, and its IR characteristic peak is relatively red-shifted compared with the former. Hydration on the C site can increase the EE distribution at the C atom and thus reduce the C⋯H distance in the C⋯H–O H–bonds, and vice versa. The number of water molecules associated with the CO{sub 2}{sup −} anion in the first hydration shell is about 4∼7. No dimer-core (C{sub 2}O{sub 4}{sup −}) and core-switching were observed in the double CO{sub 2} aqueous media. This work provides molecular dynamics

  7. Ab initio molecular dynamics simulations reveal localization and time evolution dynamics of an excess electron in heterogeneous CO2-H2O systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Ping; Zhao, Jing; Liu, Jinxiang; Zhang, Meng; Bu, Yuxiang

    2014-01-28

    In view of the important implications of excess electrons (EEs) interacting with CO2-H2O clusters in many fields, using ab initio molecular dynamics simulation technique, we reveal the structures and dynamics of an EE associated with its localization and subsequent time evolution in heterogeneous CO2-H2O mixed media. Our results indicate that although hydration can increase the electron-binding ability of a CO2 molecule, it only plays an assisting role. Instead, it is the bending vibrations that play the major role in localizing the EE. Due to enhanced attraction of CO2, an EE can stably reside in the empty, low-lying π(*) orbital of a CO2 molecule via a localization process arising from its initial binding state. The localization is completed within a few tens of femtoseconds. After EE trapping, the ∠OCO angle of the core CO2 (-) oscillates in the range of 127°∼142°, with an oscillation period of about 48 fs. The corresponding vertical detachment energy of the EE is about 4.0 eV, which indicates extreme stability of such a CO2-bound solvated EE in [CO2(H2O)n](-) systems. Interestingly, hydration occurs not only on the O atoms of the core CO2 (-) through formation of O⋯H-O H-bond(s), but also on the C atom, through formation of a C⋯H-O H-bond. In the latter binding mode, the EE cloud exhibits considerable penetration to the solvent water molecules, and its IR characteristic peak is relatively red-shifted compared with the former. Hydration on the C site can increase the EE distribution at the C atom and thus reduce the C⋯H distance in the C⋯H-O H-bonds, and vice versa. The number of water molecules associated with the CO2 (-) anion in the first hydration shell is about 4∼7. No dimer-core (C2O4 (-)) and core-switching were observed in the double CO2 aqueous media. This work provides molecular dynamics insights into the localization and time evolution dynamics of an EE in heterogeneous CO2-H2O media.

  8. Molecular Evolution of the VP1 Gene in Human Norovirus GII.4 Variants in 1974–2015

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    Takumi Motoya

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Human norovirus (HuNoV is a leading cause of viral gastroenteritis worldwide, of which GII.4 is the most predominant genotype. Unlike other genotypes, GII.4 has created various variants that escaped from previously acquired immunity of the host and caused repeated epidemics. However, the molecular evolutionary differences among all GII.4 variants, including recently discovered strains, have not been elucidated. Thus, we conducted a series of bioinformatic analyses using numerous, globally collected, full-length GII.4 major capsid (VP1 gene sequences (466 strains to compare the evolutionary patterns among GII.4 variants. The time-scaled phylogenetic tree constructed using the Bayesian Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC method showed that the common ancestor of the GII.4 VP1 gene diverged from GII.20 in 1840. The GII.4 genotype emerged in 1932, and then formed seven clusters including 14 known variants after 1980. The evolutionary rate of GII.4 strains was estimated to be 7.68 × 10−3 substitutions/site/year. The evolutionary rates probably differed among variants as well as domains [protruding 1 (P1, shell, and P2 domains]. The Osaka 2007 variant strains probably contained more nucleotide substitutions than any other variant. Few conformational epitopes were located in the shell and P1 domains, although most were contained in the P2 domain, which, as previously established, is associated with attachment to host factors and antigenicity. We found that positive selection sites for the whole GII.4 genotype existed in the shell and P1 domains, while Den Haag 2006b, New Orleans 2009, and Sydney 2012 variants were under positive selection in the P2 domain. Amino acid substitutions overlapped with putative epitopes or were located around the epitopes in the P2 domain. The effective population sizes of the present strains increased stepwise for Den Haag 2006b, New Orleans 2009, and Sydney 2012 variants. These results suggest that HuNoV GII.4 rapidly

  9. Ancient, independent evolution and distinct molecular features of the novel human T-lymphotropic virus type 4

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    Wolfe Nathan D

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Human T-lymphotropic virus type 4 (HTLV-4 is a new deltaretrovirus recently identified in a primate hunter in Cameroon. Limited sequence analysis previously showed that HTLV-4 may be distinct from HTLV-1, HTLV-2, and HTLV-3, and their simian counterparts, STLV-1, STLV-2, and STLV-3, respectively. Analysis of full-length genomes can provide basic information on the evolutionary history and replication and pathogenic potential of new viruses. Results We report here the first complete HTLV-4 sequence obtained by PCR-based genome walking using uncultured peripheral blood lymphocyte DNA from an HTLV-4-infected person. The HTLV-4(1863LE genome is 8791-bp long and is equidistant from HTLV-1, HTLV-2, and HTLV-3 sharing only 62–71% nucleotide identity. HTLV-4 has a prototypic genomic structure with all enzymatic, regulatory, and structural proteins preserved. Like STLV-2, STLV-3, and HTLV-3, HTLV-4 is missing a third 21-bp transcription element found in the long terminal repeats of HTLV-1 and HTLV-2 but instead contains unique c-Myb and pre B-cell leukemic transcription factor binding sites. Like HTLV-2, the PDZ motif important for cellular signal transduction and transformation in HTLV-1 and HTLV-3 is missing in the C-terminus of the HTLV-4 Tax protein. A basic leucine zipper (b-ZIP region located in the antisense strand of HTLV-1 and believed to play a role in viral replication and oncogenesis, was also found in the complementary strand of HTLV-4. Detailed phylogenetic analysis shows that HTLV-4 is clearly a monophyletic viral group. Dating using a relaxed molecular clock inferred that the most recent common ancestor of HTLV-4 and HTLV-2/STLV-2 occurred 49,800 to 378,000 years ago making this the oldest known PTLV lineage. Interestingly, this period coincides with the emergence of Homo sapiens sapiens during the Middle Pleistocene suggesting that early humans may have been susceptible hosts for the ancestral HTLV-4. Conclusion The

  10. Molecular evolution of Theta-class glutathione transferase for enhanced activity with the anticancer drug 1,3-bis-(2-chloroethyl)-1-nitrosourea and other alkylating agents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsson, Anna-Karin; Shokeer, Abeer; Mannervik, Bengt

    2010-05-01

    Glutathione transferase (GST) displaying enhanced activity with the cytostatic drug 1,3-bis-(2-chloroethyl)-1-nitrosourea (BCNU) and structurally related alkylating agents was obtained by molecular evolution. Mutant libraries created by recursive recombination of cDNA coding for human and rodent Theta-class GSTs were heterologously expressed in Escherichia coli and screened with the surrogate substrate 4-nitrophenethyl bromide (NPB) for enhanced alkyltransferase activity. A mutant with a 70-fold increased catalytic efficiency with NPB, compared to human GST T1-1, was isolated. The efficiency in degrading BCNU had improved 170-fold, significantly more than with the model substrate NPB. The enhanced catalytic activity of the mutant GST was also 2-fold higher with BCNU than wild-type mouse GST T1-1, which is 80-fold more efficient than wild-type human GST T1-1. We propose that GSTs catalyzing inactivation of anticancer drugs may find clinical use in protecting sensitive normal tissues to toxic side-effects in treated patients, and as selectable markers in gene therapy. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Effects of magnetic flux densities on microstructure evolution and magnetic properties of molecular-beam-vapor-deposited nanocrystalline Fe_3_0Ni_7_0 thin films

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cao, Yongze; Wang, Qiang; Li, Guojian; Ma, Yonghui; Du, Jiaojiao; He, Jicheng

    2015-01-01

    Nanocrystalline Fe_3_0Ni_7_0 (in atomic %) thin films were prepared by molecular-beam-vapor deposition in magnetic fields with different magnetic flux densities. The microstructure evolution of these thin films was studied by atomic force microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, and high resolution transmission electron microscopy; the soft magnetic properties were examined by vibrating sample magnetometer at room temperature. The results show that all our Fe_3_0Ni_7_0 thin films feature an fcc single-phase structure. With increasing magnetic flux density, surface roughness, average particle size and grain size of the thin films decreased, and the short-range ordered clusters (embryos) of thin films increased. Additionally, the magnetic anisotropy in the in-plane and the coercive forces of the thin films gradually reduced with increasing magnetic flux density. - Highlights: • With increasing magnetic flux density, average particle size of films decreased. • With increasing magnetic flux density, surface roughness of thin films decreased. • With increasing magnetic flux density, short-range ordered clusters increased. • With increasing magnetic flux density, the coercive forces of thin films reduced. • With increasing magnetic flux density, soft magnetic properties are improved.

  12. Molecular and macromolecular changes in bottle-aged white wines reflect oxidative evolution – Impact of must clarification and bottle closure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coelho, Christian; Julien, Perrine; Nikolantonaki, Maria; Noret, Laurence; Magne, Mathilde; Ballester, Jordi; Gougeon, Régis D.

    2018-04-01

    Chardonnay wines from Burgundy, obtained from musts with three levels of clarification (Low, Medium and High) during two consecutive vintages (2009 and 2010) and for two kinds of closures (screw caps and synthetic coextruded closures) were analyzed chemically and sensorially. Three bottles per turbidity level were opened in 2015 in order to assess the intensity of the reductive and/or oxidative aromas (REDOX sensory scores) by a trained sensory panel. The chemical analyses consisted in polyphenols and colloids quantification, followed by a proteomic characterization. For the two vintages, the REDOX sensory scores appeared to be driven both by the type of closure and to a lesser extent by the level of must clarification. Vintages and must racking prefermentative operations were also distinguished by chemical analyses. All white wines from the lowest must turbidity had the lowest REDOX sensory scores. Such wines exhibited lower concentrations in tyrosol and grape reaction product and higher concentrations in colloids with relatively low molecular weights. Among these macromolecules, grape proteins were also quantified, two of them exhibiting concentrations in bottled wines, which were statistically correlated to oxidative evolution in white wines

  13. Molecular archaeology of Flaviviridae untranslated regions: duplicated RNA structures in the replication enhancer of flaviviruses and pestiviruses emerged via convergent evolution.

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    Dmitri J Gritsun

    Full Text Available RNA secondary structures in the 3'untranslated regions (3'UTR of the viruses of the family Flaviviridae, previously identified as essential (promoters or beneficial (enhancers for replication, have been analysed. Duplicated enhancer elements are revealed as a global feature in the evolution of the 3'UTR of distantly related viruses within the genera Flavivirus and Pestivirus. For the flaviviruses, duplicated structures occur in the 3'UTR of all four distantly related ecological virus subgroups (tick-borne, mosquito-borne, no known vector and insect-specific flaviviruses (ISFV. RNA structural differences distinguish tick-borne flaviviruses with discrete pathogenetic characteristics. For Aedes- and Culex-associated ISFV, secondary RNA structures with different conformations display numerous short ssRNA direct repeats, exposed as loops and bulges. Long quadruplicate regions comprise almost the entire 3'UTR of Culex-associated ISFV. Extended duplicated sequence and associated RNA structures were also discovered in the 3'UTR of pestiviruse