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Sample records for understand gene function

  1. Understanding doublecortin-like kinase gene function through transgenesis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schenk, Geert J.

    2010-01-01

    Doublecortin (DCX) and DCX-domain containing Doublecortin-Like Kinase (DCLK) gene splice variants function during embryonic development, where they play a role in microtubule binding. Although a role for the DCLK gene during embryogenesis is clearly established, it encodes multiple, different

  2. PaGenBase: a pattern gene database for the global and dynamic understanding of gene function.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian-Bo Pan

    Full Text Available Pattern genes are a group of genes that have a modularized expression behavior under serial physiological conditions. The identification of pattern genes will provide a path toward a global and dynamic understanding of gene functions and their roles in particular biological processes or events, such as development and pathogenesis. In this study, we present PaGenBase, a novel repository for the collection of tissue- and time-specific pattern genes, including specific genes, selective genes, housekeeping genes and repressed genes. The PaGenBase database is now freely accessible at http://bioinf.xmu.edu.cn/PaGenBase/. In the current version (PaGenBase 1.0, the database contains 906,599 pattern genes derived from the literature or from data mining of more than 1,145,277 gene expression profiles in 1,062 distinct samples collected from 11 model organisms. Four statistical parameters were used to quantitatively evaluate the pattern genes. Moreover, three methods (quick search, advanced search and browse were designed for rapid and customized data retrieval. The potential applications of PaGenBase are also briefly described. In summary, PaGenBase will serve as a resource for the global and dynamic understanding of gene function and will facilitate high-level investigations in a variety of fields, including the study of development, pathogenesis and novel drug discovery.

  3. Using Genetically Engineered Animal Models in the Postgenomic Era to Understand Gene Function in Alcoholism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reilly, Matthew T.; Harris, R. Adron; Noronha, Antonio

    2012-01-01

    Over the last 50 years, researchers have made substantial progress in identifying genetic variations that underlie the complex phenotype of alcoholism. Not much is known, however, about how this genetic variation translates into altered biological function. Genetic animal models recapitulating specific characteristics of the human condition have helped elucidate gene function and the genetic basis of disease. In particular, major advances have come from the ability to manipulate genes through a variety of genetic technologies that provide an unprecedented capacity to determine gene function in the living organism and in alcohol-related behaviors. Even newer genetic-engineering technologies have given researchers the ability to control when and where a specific gene or mutation is activated or deleted, allowing investigators to narrow the role of the gene’s function to circumscribed neural pathways and across development. These technologies are important for all areas of neuroscience, and several public and private initiatives are making a new generation of genetic-engineering tools available to the scientific community at large. Finally, high-throughput “next-generation sequencing” technologies are set to rapidly increase knowledge of the genome, epigenome, and transcriptome, which, combined with genetically engineered mouse mutants, will enhance insight into biological function. All of these resources will provide deeper insight into the genetic basis of alcoholism. PMID:23134044

  4. The Ever-Evolving Concept of the Gene: The Use of RNA/Protein Experimental Techniques to Understand Genome Functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Cipriano

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The completion of the human genome sequence together with advances in sequencing technologies have shifted the paradigm of the genome, as composed of discrete and hereditable coding entities, and have shown the abundance of functional noncoding DNA. This part of the genome, previously dismissed as “junk” DNA, increases proportionally with organismal complexity and contributes to gene regulation beyond the boundaries of known protein-coding genes. Different classes of functionally relevant nonprotein-coding RNAs are transcribed from noncoding DNA sequences. Among them are the long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs, which are thought to participate in the basal regulation of protein-coding genes at both transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels. Although knowledge of this field is still limited, the ability of lncRNAs to localize in different cellular compartments, to fold into specific secondary structures and to interact with different molecules (RNA or proteins endows them with multiple regulatory mechanisms. It is becoming evident that lncRNAs may play a crucial role in most biological processes such as the control of development, differentiation and cell growth. This review places the evolution of the concept of the gene in its historical context, from Darwin's hypothetical mechanism of heredity to the post-genomic era. We discuss how the original idea of protein-coding genes as unique determinants of phenotypic traits has been reconsidered in light of the existence of noncoding RNAs. We summarize the technological developments which have been made in the genome-wide identification and study of lncRNAs and emphasize the methodologies that have aided our understanding of the complexity of lncRNA-protein interactions in recent years.

  5. Understanding the Function of Genes Involved in Inherited Retinal Degeneration-Insights into the Pathogenesis and Function of C8ORF37

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharif, Ali Sakawa

    Inherited retinal degenerative diseases (IRD) are a group of disorders that lead to progressive deterioration of mainly the photoreceptors. Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and cone-rod dystrophy (CRD) are two forms of IRDs. RP is the most common form of IRD and is due to rod photoreceptor degeneration followed by cone photoreceptor loss. CRD, on the other hand, is characterized by the loss of cones or the concurrent degeneration of both cones and rods. Both RP and CRD are presently incurable. More than 200 genes have been identified to cause IRDs and the functions of many of these genes remain unclear. Mutations in a novel gene, C8ORF37, were identified to cause recessive, severe, and early-onset RP and CRD. I, therefore, pioneered in characterizing the role of C8ORF37 in the retina. This dissertation is comprised of four chapters that is organized as follows: (1) summary of an ocular disorder (2) a genetic model of a retinal disorder (3) biochemical/proteomic analysis of C8ORF37 (4) potential clinical applications. A summary of ocular disorders is discussed in Chapter 1, with an emphasis on CRD. Chapter 2 focuses on the generation and characterization of C8orf37 mutant mouse models that recapitulate the retinal pathologies observed in human patients. In C8orf37 knockout retinas, the outer segment (OS) was nonuniform, swollen, and wider in width when compared to the controls. Moreover, many OS membrane proteins were reduced in the retina of C8orf37 knockout, including CNGB1 and RDS, proteins essential for OS disc morphogenesis and alignment. Our findings shed new light on the pathogenesis underlying retinal dysfunction and degeneration in C8ORF37-deficient patients. To determine the function of a novel protein, a powerful approach is by identifying its binding partners. In Chapter 3, I discuss GST pull-down using bovine retinal lysates, yeast-two-hybrid, and immunoprecipitation with mouse retinal lysate in order to identify C8ORF37-interacting proteins. Our pull

  6. From bacterial avirulence genes to effector functions via the hrp delivery system: an overview of 25 years of progress in our understanding of plant innate immunity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mansfield, John W

    2009-11-01

    Cloning the first avirulence (avr) gene has led not only to a deeper understanding of gene-for-gene interactions in plant disease, but also to fundamental insights into the suppression of basal defences against microbial attack. This article (focusing on Pseudomonas syringae) charts the development of ideas and research progress over the 25 years following the breakthrough achieved by Staskawicz and coworkers. Advances in gene cloning technology underpinned the identification of both avr and hrp genes, the latter being required for the activation of the defensive hypersensitive reaction (HR) and pathogenicity. The delivery of Avr proteins through the type III secretion machinery encoded by hrp gene clusters was demonstrated, and the activity of the proteins inside plant cells as elicitors of the HR was confirmed. Key roles for avr genes in pathogenic fitness have now been established. The rebranding of Avr proteins as effectors, proteins that suppress the HR and cell wall-based defences, has led to the ongoing search for their targets, and is generating new insights into the co-ordination of plant resistance against diverse microbes. Bioinformatics-led analysis of effector gene distribution in genomes has provided a remarkable view of the interchange of effectors and also their functional domains, as the arms race of attack and defence drives the evolution of microbial pathogenicity. The application of our accrued knowledge for the development of disease control strategies is considered.

  7. Transgenic Mouse Studies to Understand the Regulation, Expression and Function of the Testis-Specific Protein Y-Encoded (TSPY Gene

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanie Schubert

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available The TSPY gene, which encodes the testis-specific protein, Y-encoded, was first discovered and characterized in humans, but orthologous genes were subsequently identified on the Y chromosome of many other placental mammals. TSPY is expressed in the testis and to a much lesser extent in the prostate gland, and it is assumed that TSPY serves function in spermatogonial proliferation and/or differentiation. It is further supposed that TSPY is involved in male infertility and exerts oncogenic effects in gonadal and prostate tumor formation. As a member of the TSPY/SET/NAP protein family, TSPY is able to bind cyclin B types, and stimulates the cyclin B1-CDK1 kinase activity, thereby accelerating the G2/M phase transition of the cell cycle of target cells. Because the laboratory mouse carries only a nonfunctional Y-chromosomal Tspy-ps pseudogene, a knockout mouse model for functional research analyses is not a feasible approach. In the last decade, three classical transgenic mouse models have been developed to contribute to our understanding of TSPY regulation, expression and function. The different transgenic mouse approaches and their relevance for studying TSPY regulation, expression and function are discussed in this review.

  8. Beginning to understand the role of sugar carriers in Colletotrichum lindemuthianum: the function of the gene mfs1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Monalessa Fábia; de Araújo Dos Santos, Carolina Maria; de Araújo, Elza Fernandes; de Queiroz, Marisa Vieira; Bazzolli, Denise Mara Soares

    2013-02-01

    Fungi of the Colletotrichum genus are among the most prominent phytopathogens that cause diseases with a considerable economic impact, such as anthracnose. The hemibiotrophic fungus Colletotrichum lindemuthianum (teleomorph Glomerella cingulata f. sp. phaseoli) is the causal agent of the anthracnose of the common bean; and similarly to other phytopathogens, it uses multiple strategies to gain access to different carbon sources from its host. In this study, we examine mfs1, a newly identified C. lindemuthianum hexose transporter. The mfs1 gene is expressed only during the necrotrophic phase of the fungus' interaction within the plant and allows it to utilize the available sugars during this phase. The deletion of mfs1 gene resulted in differential growth of the fungus in a medium that contained glucose, mannose or fructose as the only carbon source. This study is the first to describe a hexose transporter in the hemibiotrophic pathogen C. lindemuthianum and to demonstrate the central role of this protein in capturing carbon sources during the necrotrophic development of the plant/pathogen interaction.

  9. Understanding the Function of Tuberous Sclerosis Complex Genes in Neural Development: Roles in Synapse Assembly and Axon Guidance

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-02-01

    with tuberous sclerosis as well as other epileptic syndromes. Finally, we examined the function of a key downstream element of TOR-TSC...enhances GABA(A) receptor cell-surface expression by a phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase/Akt pathway—Rele- vance to sepsis-associated encephalopathy . J

  10. Understanding and controlling hepatobiliary function

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Elferink, Ronald P. J. Oude

    2002-01-01

    Over the past decade, enormous progress has been made in identifying the mechanisms that underlie hepatobiliary excretion. A set of transport proteins mediates the canalicular transport of most important bile constituents. With the discovery of these transporter genes, the mechanism of bile

  11. Towards a molecular understanding of symbiont function: identification of a fungal gene for the degradation of xylan in the fungus gardens of leaf-cutting ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schiøtt, Morten; De Fine Licht, Henrik H; Lange, Lene

    2008-01-01

    -substrate degradation in fungus gardens is a multi-step process comparable to normal biodegradation of organic matter in soil ecosystems, but with the crucial difference that a single fungal symbiont realizes most of the steps that are normally provided by a series of microorganisms that colonize fallen leaves...... in the fungus gardens in order to investigate the dynamics of degradation activities. RESULTS: We cloned a xylanase gene from the mutualistic fungus of Acromyrmex echinatior, determined its protein sequence, and inserted it in a yeast expression vector to confirm its substrate specificity. Our results show...... that the fungus has a functional xylanase gene. We also show by lab experiments in vivo that the activity of fungal xylanase and cellulase is not evenly distributed, but concentrated in the lower layer of fungus gardens, with only modest activity in the middle layer where gongylidia are produced and intermediate...

  12. Microbial Functional Gene Diversity Predicts Groundwater Contamination and Ecosystem Functioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Zhili; Zhang, Ping; Wu, Linwei; Rocha, Andrea M; Tu, Qichao; Shi, Zhou; Wu, Bo; Qin, Yujia; Wang, Jianjun; Yan, Qingyun; Curtis, Daniel; Ning, Daliang; Van Nostrand, Joy D; Wu, Liyou; Yang, Yunfeng; Elias, Dwayne A; Watson, David B; Adams, Michael W W; Fields, Matthew W; Alm, Eric J; Hazen, Terry C; Adams, Paul D; Arkin, Adam P; Zhou, Jizhong

    2018-02-20

    Contamination from anthropogenic activities has significantly impacted Earth's biosphere. However, knowledge about how environmental contamination affects the biodiversity of groundwater microbiomes and ecosystem functioning remains very limited. Here, we used a comprehensive functional gene array to analyze groundwater microbiomes from 69 wells at the Oak Ridge Field Research Center (Oak Ridge, TN), representing a wide pH range and uranium, nitrate, and other contaminants. We hypothesized that the functional diversity of groundwater microbiomes would decrease as environmental contamination (e.g., uranium or nitrate) increased or at low or high pH, while some specific populations capable of utilizing or resistant to those contaminants would increase, and thus, such key microbial functional genes and/or populations could be used to predict groundwater contamination and ecosystem functioning. Our results indicated that functional richness/diversity decreased as uranium (but not nitrate) increased in groundwater. In addition, about 5.9% of specific key functional populations targeted by a comprehensive functional gene array (GeoChip 5) increased significantly ( P contamination and ecosystem functioning. This study indicates great potential for using microbial functional genes to predict environmental contamination and ecosystem functioning. IMPORTANCE Disentangling the relationships between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning is an important but poorly understood topic in ecology. Predicting ecosystem functioning on the basis of biodiversity is even more difficult, particularly with microbial biomarkers. As an exploratory effort, this study used key microbial functional genes as biomarkers to provide predictive understanding of environmental contamination and ecosystem functioning. The results indicated that the overall functional gene richness/diversity decreased as uranium increased in groundwater, while specific key microbial guilds increased significantly as

  13. Sugarcane genes related to mitochondrial function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fonseca Ghislaine V.

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available Mitochondria function as metabolic powerhouses by generating energy through oxidative phosphorylation and have become the focus of renewed interest due to progress in understanding the subtleties of their biogenesis and the discovery of the important roles which these organelles play in senescence, cell death and the assembly of iron-sulfur (Fe/S centers. Using proteins from the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Homo sapiens and Arabidopsis thaliana we searched the sugarcane expressed sequence tag (SUCEST database for the presence of expressed sequence tags (ESTs with similarity to nuclear genes related to mitochondrial functions. Starting with 869 protein sequences, we searched for sugarcane EST counterparts to these proteins using the basic local alignment search tool TBLASTN similarity searching program run against 260,781 sugarcane ESTs contained in 81,223 clusters. We were able to recover 367 clusters likely to represent sugarcane orthologues of the corresponding genes from S. cerevisiae, H. sapiens and A. thaliana with E-value <= 10-10. Gene products belonging to all functional categories related to mitochondrial functions were found and this allowed us to produce an overview of the nuclear genes required for sugarcane mitochondrial biogenesis and function as well as providing a starting point for detailed analysis of sugarcane gene structure and physiology.

  14. Function analysis of unknown genes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rogowska-Wrzesinska, A.

    2002-01-01

      This thesis entitled "Function analysis of unknown genes" presents the use of proteome analysis for the characterisation of yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) genes and their products (proteins especially those of unknown function). This study illustrates that proteome analysis can be used...... be obtained using proteome analysis. Chapter 1 and 2 provide the basic theoretical aspects of proteome analysis, its principles, the main techniques involved and their use in the studies of the molecular biology of yeast cells. Chapter 3 presents the methods and tools involved in proteome analysis and used...... presents a comparison of the proteomes of three yeast wild type strains CEN.PK2, FY1679 and W303 that are widely used in function analysis projects and proves that FY1679 and W303 strains are more similar to each other than to the CEN.PK2 strain. This study identifies 62 proteins that are differentially...

  15. Rotavirus gene structure and function.

    OpenAIRE

    Estes, M K; Cohen, J

    1989-01-01

    Knowledge of the structure and function of the genes and proteins of the rotaviruses has expanded rapidly. Information obtained in the last 5 years has revealed unexpected and unique molecular properties of rotavirus proteins of general interest to virologists, biochemists, and cell biologists. Rotaviruses share some features of replication with reoviruses, yet antigenic and molecular properties of the outer capsid proteins, VP4 (a protein whose cleavage is required for infectivity, possibly ...

  16. Understanding gene functions and disease mechanisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fuchs, Helmut; Aguilar-Pimentel, Juan Antonio; Amarie, Oana V.

    2018-01-01

    . For hypothesis-driven phenotypic analyses, there are thirteen additional pipelines with focus on neurological and behavioral disorders, metabolic dysfunction, respiratory system malfunctions, immune-system disorders and imaging techniques. In this article, we give an overview of the pipelines and describe...

  17. Using functional genetics to understand breast cancer biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashworth, Alan; Bernards, Rene

    2010-07-01

    Genetic screens were for long the prerogative of those that studied model organisms. The discovery in 2001 that gene silencing through RNA interference (RNAi) can also be brought about in mammalian cells paved the way for large scale loss-of-function genetic screens in higher organisms. In this article, we describe how functional genetic studies can help us understand the biology of breast cancer, how it can be used to identify novel targets for breast cancer therapy, and how it can help in the identification of those patients that are most likely to respond to a given therapy.

  18. PoplarGene: poplar gene network and resource for mining functional information for genes from woody plants

    OpenAIRE

    Qi Liu; Changjun Ding; Yanguang Chu; Jiafei Chen; Weixi Zhang; Bingyu Zhang; Qinjun Huang; Xiaohua Su

    2016-01-01

    Poplar is not only an important resource for the production of paper, timber and other wood-based products, but it has also emerged as an ideal model system for studying woody plants. To better understand the biological processes underlying various traits in poplar, e.g., wood development, a comprehensive functional gene interaction network is highly needed. Here, we constructed a genome-wide functional gene network for poplar (covering ~70% of the 41,335 poplar genes) and created the network...

  19. Genes2FANs: connecting genes through functional association networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Background Protein-protein, cell signaling, metabolic, and transcriptional interaction networks are useful for identifying connections between lists of experimentally identified genes/proteins. However, besides physical or co-expression interactions there are many ways in which pairs of genes, or their protein products, can be associated. By systematically incorporating knowledge on shared properties of genes from diverse sources to build functional association networks (FANs), researchers may be able to identify additional functional interactions between groups of genes that are not readily apparent. Results Genes2FANs is a web based tool and a database that utilizes 14 carefully constructed FANs and a large-scale protein-protein interaction (PPI) network to build subnetworks that connect lists of human and mouse genes. The FANs are created from mammalian gene set libraries where mouse genes are converted to their human orthologs. The tool takes as input a list of human or mouse Entrez gene symbols to produce a subnetwork and a ranked list of intermediate genes that are used to connect the query input list. In addition, users can enter any PubMed search term and then the system automatically converts the returned results to gene lists using GeneRIF. This gene list is then used as input to generate a subnetwork from the user’s PubMed query. As a case study, we applied Genes2FANs to connect disease genes from 90 well-studied disorders. We find an inverse correlation between the counts of links connecting disease genes through PPI and links connecting diseases genes through FANs, separating diseases into two categories. Conclusions Genes2FANs is a useful tool for interpreting the relationships between gene/protein lists in the context of their various functions and networks. Combining functional association interactions with physical PPIs can be useful for revealing new biology and help form hypotheses for further experimentation. Our finding that disease genes in

  20. Investigating Gene Function in Cereal Rust Fungi by Plant-Mediated Virus-Induced Gene Silencing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panwar, Vinay; Bakkeren, Guus

    2017-01-01

    Cereal rust fungi are destructive pathogens, threatening grain production worldwide. Targeted breeding for resistance utilizing host resistance genes has been effective. However, breakdown of resistance occurs frequently and continued efforts are needed to understand how these fungi overcome resistance and to expand the range of available resistance genes. Whole genome sequencing, transcriptomic and proteomic studies followed by genome-wide computational and comparative analyses have identified large repertoire of genes in rust fungi among which are candidates predicted to code for pathogenicity and virulence factors. Some of these genes represent defence triggering avirulence effectors. However, functions of most genes still needs to be assessed to understand the biology of these obligate biotrophic pathogens. Since genetic manipulations such as gene deletion and genetic transformation are not yet feasible in rust fungi, performing functional gene studies is challenging. Recently, Host-induced gene silencing (HIGS) has emerged as a useful tool to characterize gene function in rust fungi while infecting and growing in host plants. We utilized Barley stripe mosaic virus-mediated virus induced gene silencing (BSMV-VIGS) to induce HIGS of candidate rust fungal genes in the wheat host to determine their role in plant-fungal interactions. Here, we describe the methods for using BSMV-VIGS in wheat for functional genomics study in cereal rust fungi.

  1. When natural selection gives gene function the cold shoulder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cutter, Asher D; Jovelin, Richard

    2015-11-01

    It is tempting to invoke organismal selection as perpetually optimizing the function of any given gene. However, natural selection can drive genic functional change without improvement of biochemical activity, even to the extinction of gene activity. Detrimental mutations can creep in owing to linkage with other selectively favored loci. Selection can promote functional degradation, irrespective of genetic drift, when adaptation occurs by loss of gene function. Even stabilizing selection on a trait can lead to divergence of the underlying molecular constituents. Selfish genetic elements can also proliferate independent of any functional benefits to the host genome. Here we review the logic and evidence for these diverse processes acting in genome evolution. This collection of distinct evolutionary phenomena - while operating through easily understandable mechanisms - all contribute to the seemingly counterintuitive notion that maintenance or improvement of a gene's biochemical function sometimes do not determine its evolutionary fate. © 2015 WILEY Periodicals, Inc.

  2. Data Integration and Applications of Functional Gene Networks in Drosophila Melanogaster

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costello, James Christopher

    2009-01-01

    Understanding the function of every gene in the genome is a central goal in the biological sciences. This includes full characterization of a genes phenotypic effects, molecular interactions, the evolutionary forces that shape its function(s), and how these functions interrelate. Despite a long history and considerable effort to understand all…

  3. Understanding the Executive Functioning Heterogeneity in Schizophrenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raffard, Stephane; Bayard, Sophie

    2012-01-01

    Schizophrenia is characterized by heterogeneous brain abnormalities involving cerebral regions implied in the executive functioning. The dysexecutive syndrome is one of the most prominent and functionally cognitive features of schizophrenia. Nevertheless, it is not clear to what extend executive deficits are heterogeneous in schizophrenia…

  4. Understanding Linear Functions and Their Representations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wells, Pamela J.

    2015-01-01

    Linear functions are an important part of the middle school mathematics curriculum. Students in the middle grades gain fluency by working with linear functions in a variety of representations (NCTM 2001). Presented in this article is an activity that was used with five eighth-grade classes at three different schools. The activity contains 15 cards…

  5. Understanding Microbial Communities: Function, Structure and Dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-02-11

    microbial communities: Function, structure and dynamics’, at the Isaac Newton Institute, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom, from August to...dynamics’, at the Isaac Newton Institute, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom, from August to December 2014. The programme involved over 150...Communities: Function, Structure and Dynamics’, at the Isaac Newton Institute, Cambridge University, UK, from 19th August 2014 – 19th December 2014

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  7. Central auditory function of deafness genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willaredt, Marc A; Ebbers, Lena; Nothwang, Hans Gerd

    2014-06-01

    The highly variable benefit of hearing devices is a serious challenge in auditory rehabilitation. Various factors contribute to this phenomenon such as the diversity in ear defects, the different extent of auditory nerve hypoplasia, the age of intervention, and cognitive abilities. Recent analyses indicate that, in addition, central auditory functions of deafness genes have to be considered in this context. Since reduced neuronal activity acts as the common denominator in deafness, it is widely assumed that peripheral deafness influences development and function of the central auditory system in a stereotypical manner. However, functional characterization of transgenic mice with mutated deafness genes demonstrated gene-specific abnormalities in the central auditory system as well. A frequent function of deafness genes in the central auditory system is supported by a genome-wide expression study that revealed significant enrichment of these genes in the transcriptome of the auditory brainstem compared to the entire brain. Here, we will summarize current knowledge of the diverse central auditory functions of deafness genes. We furthermore propose the intimately interwoven gene regulatory networks governing development of the otic placode and the hindbrain as a mechanistic explanation for the widespread expression of these genes beyond the cochlea. We conclude that better knowledge of central auditory dysfunction caused by genetic alterations in deafness genes is required. In combination with improved genetic diagnostics becoming currently available through novel sequencing technologies, this information will likely contribute to better outcome prediction of hearing devices. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Barley Stem Rust Resistance Genes: Structure and Function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andris Kleinhofs

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Rusts are biotrophic pathogens that attack many plant species but are particularly destructive on cereal crops. The stem rusts (caused by have historically caused severe crop losses and continue to threaten production today. Barley ( L. breeders have controlled major stem rust epidemics since the 1940s with a single durable resistance gene . As new epidemics have threatened, additional resistance genes were identified to counter new rust races, such as the complex locus against races QCCJ and TTKSK. To understand how these genes work, we initiated research to clone and characterize them. The gene encodes a unique protein kinase with dual kinase domains, an active kinase, and a pseudokinase. Function of both domains is essential to confer resistance. The and genes are closely linked and function coordinately to confer resistance to several wheat ( L. stem rust races, including the race TTKSK (also called Ug99 that threatens the world's barley and wheat crops. The gene encodes typical resistance gene domains NBS, LRR, and protein kinase but is unique in that all three domains reside in a single gene, a previously unknown structure among plant disease resistance genes. The gene encodes an actin depolymerizing factor that functions in cytoskeleton rearrangement.

  9. Biochemical mechanisms determine the functional compatibility of heterologous genes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Porse, Andreas; Schou, Thea S.; Munck, Christian

    2018-01-01

    Elucidating the factors governing the functional compatibility of horizontally transferred genes is important to understand bacterial evolution, including the emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance, and to successfully engineer biological systems. In silico efforts and work using single-gene...... libraries have suggested that sequence composition is a strong barrier for the successful integration of heterologous genes. Here we sample 200 diverse genes, representing >80% of sequenced antibiotic resistance genes, to interrogate the factors governing genetic compatibility in new hosts. In contrast...... to previous work, we find that GC content, codon usage, and mRNA-folding energy are of minor importance for the compatibility of mechanistically diverse gene products at moderate expression. Instead, we identify the phylogenetic origin, and the dependence of a resistance mechanism on host physiology, as major...

  10. Functional consequences of integrin gene mutations in mice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bouvard, D; Brakebusch, C; Gustafsson, E

    2001-01-01

    Integrins are cell-surface receptors responsible for cell attachment to extracellular matrices and to other cells. The application of mouse genetics has significantly increased our understanding of integrin function in vivo. In this review, we summarize the phenotypes of mice carrying mutant inte...... integrin genes and compare them with phenotypes of mice lacking the integrin ligands....

  11. Gene, environment and cognitive function

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Xu, Chunsheng; Sun, Jianping; Duan, Haiping

    2015-01-01

    population living under distinct environmental condition as the Western populations. OBJECTIVE: this study aims to explore the genetic and environmental impact on normal cognitive ageing in the Chinese twins. DESIGN/SETTING: cognitive function was measured on 384 complete twin pairs with median age of 50...... factors accounting for 23-33% of the total variances. In contrast, all cognitive performances showed moderate to high influences by the unique environmental factors. CONCLUSIONS: genetic factor and common family environment have a limited contribution to cognitive function in the Chinese adults......BACKGROUND: the genetic and environmental contributions to cognitive function in the old people have been well addressed for the Western populations using twin modelling showing moderate to high heritability. No similar study has been conducted in the world largest and rapidly ageing Chinese...

  12. Microbial Functional Gene Diversity Predicts Groundwater Contamination and Ecosystem Functioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Ping; Wu, Linwei; Rocha, Andrea M.; Shi, Zhou; Wu, Bo; Qin, Yujia; Wang, Jianjun; Yan, Qingyun; Curtis, Daniel; Ning, Daliang; Van Nostrand, Joy D.; Wu, Liyou; Watson, David B.; Adams, Michael W. W.; Alm, Eric J.; Adams, Paul D.; Arkin, Adam P.

    2018-01-01

    ABSTRACT Contamination from anthropogenic activities has significantly impacted Earth’s biosphere. However, knowledge about how environmental contamination affects the biodiversity of groundwater microbiomes and ecosystem functioning remains very limited. Here, we used a comprehensive functional gene array to analyze groundwater microbiomes from 69 wells at the Oak Ridge Field Research Center (Oak Ridge, TN), representing a wide pH range and uranium, nitrate, and other contaminants. We hypothesized that the functional diversity of groundwater microbiomes would decrease as environmental contamination (e.g., uranium or nitrate) increased or at low or high pH, while some specific populations capable of utilizing or resistant to those contaminants would increase, and thus, such key microbial functional genes and/or populations could be used to predict groundwater contamination and ecosystem functioning. Our results indicated that functional richness/diversity decreased as uranium (but not nitrate) increased in groundwater. In addition, about 5.9% of specific key functional populations targeted by a comprehensive functional gene array (GeoChip 5) increased significantly (P contamination and ecosystem functioning. This study indicates great potential for using microbial functional genes to predict environmental contamination and ecosystem functioning. PMID:29463661

  13. Defining functional distances over Gene Ontology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    del Pozo Angela

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A fundamental problem when trying to define the functional relationships between proteins is the difficulty in quantifying functional similarities, even when well-structured ontologies exist regarding the activity of proteins (i.e. 'gene ontology' -GO-. However, functional metrics can overcome the problems in the comparing and evaluating functional assignments and predictions. As a reference of proximity, previous approaches to compare GO terms considered linkage in terms of ontology weighted by a probability distribution that balances the non-uniform 'richness' of different parts of the Direct Acyclic Graph. Here, we have followed a different approach to quantify functional similarities between GO terms. Results We propose a new method to derive 'functional distances' between GO terms that is based on the simultaneous occurrence of terms in the same set of Interpro entries, instead of relying on the structure of the GO. The coincidence of GO terms reveals natural biological links between the GO functions and defines a distance model Df which fulfils the properties of a Metric Space. The distances obtained in this way can be represented as a hierarchical 'Functional Tree'. Conclusion The method proposed provides a new definition of distance that enables the similarity between GO terms to be quantified. Additionally, the 'Functional Tree' defines groups with biological meaning enhancing its utility for protein function comparison and prediction. Finally, this approach could be for function-based protein searches in databases, and for analysing the gene clusters produced by DNA array experiments.

  14. Can Power Laws Help Us Understand Gene and Proteome Information?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. A. Tenreiro Machado

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Proteins are biochemical entities consisting of one or more blocks typically folded in a 3D pattern. Each block (a polypeptide is a single linear sequence of amino acids that are biochemically bonded together. The amino acid sequence in a protein is defined by the sequence of a gene or several genes encoded in the DNA-based genetic code. This genetic code typically uses twenty amino acids, but in certain organisms the genetic code can also include two other amino acids. After linking the amino acids during protein synthesis, each amino acid becomes a residue in a protein, which is then chemically modified, ultimately changing and defining the protein function. In this study, the authors analyze the amino acid sequence using alignment-free methods, aiming to identify structural patterns in sets of proteins and in the proteome, without any other previous assumptions. The paper starts by analyzing amino acid sequence data by means of histograms using fixed length amino acid words (tuples. After creating the initial relative frequency histograms, they are transformed and processed in order to generate quantitative results for information extraction and graphical visualization. Selected samples from two reference datasets are used, and results reveal that the proposed method is able to generate relevant outputs in accordance with current scientific knowledge in domains like protein sequence/proteome analysis.

  15. Diverse gene functions in a soil mobilome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Luo, Wenting; Xu, Zhuofei; Riber, Leise

    2016-01-01

    , the soil mobilome sampled from a well-characterized field in Hygum, Denmark. Soil bacterial cells were obtained by Nycodenz extraction, total DNA was purified by removing sheared chromosomal DNA using exonuclease digestion, and the remaining circular DNA was amplified with the phi29 polymerase and finally...... sequenced. The soil mobilome represented a wide range of known bacterial gene functions and highlighted the enrichment of plasmids, transposable elements and phages when compared to a well-characterized soil metagenome that, on the other hand, was dominated by basic biosynthesis and metabolism functions....... Approximately one eighth of the gene set was of plasmid-intrinsic traits, including replication, conjugation, mobilization and stability based on Pfam database analysis. Resistance determinants toward aminoglycosides, beta-lactams and glycopeptides as well as multi-drug functions indicated that a substantial...

  16. Ribosomal RNA gene functioning in avian oogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koshel, Elena; Galkina, Svetlana; Saifitdinova, Alsu; Dyomin, Alexandr; Deryusheva, Svetlana; Gaginskaya, Elena

    2016-12-01

    Despite long-term exploration into ribosomal RNA gene functioning during the oogenesis of various organisms, many intriguing problems remain unsolved. In this review, we describe nucleolus organizer region (NOR) activity in avian oocytes. Whereas oocytes from an adult avian ovary never reveal the formation of the nucleolus in the germinal vesicle (GV), an ovary from juvenile birds possesses both nucleolus-containing and non-nucleolus-containing oocytes. The evolutionary diversity of oocyte NOR functioning and the potential non-rRNA-related functions of the nucleolus in oocytes are also discussed.

  17. Discovering and understanding oncogenic gene fusions through data intensive computational approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Latysheva, Natasha S.; Babu, M. Madan

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Although gene fusions have been recognized as important drivers of cancer for decades, our understanding of the prevalence and function of gene fusions has been revolutionized by the rise of next-generation sequencing, advances in bioinformatics theory and an increasing capacity for large-scale computational biology. The computational work on gene fusions has been vastly diverse, and the present state of the literature is fragmented. It will be fruitful to merge three camps of gene fusion bioinformatics that appear to rarely cross over: (i) data-intensive computational work characterizing the molecular biology of gene fusions; (ii) development research on fusion detection tools, candidate fusion prioritization algorithms and dedicated fusion databases and (iii) clinical research that seeks to either therapeutically target fusion transcripts and proteins or leverages advances in detection tools to perform large-scale surveys of gene fusion landscapes in specific cancer types. In this review, we unify these different—yet highly complementary and symbiotic—approaches with the view that increased synergy will catalyze advancements in gene fusion identification, characterization and significance evaluation. PMID:27105842

  18. Understanding gene expression in coronary artery disease through ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    ). PTX3. Gene is considered as an endogenous modulator of vascular inflammation (Suzuki et al. 2008). PTGS2. Gene has a prominent role in inflammation and mitogenesis and PTX3, which is considered as an endogenous modulator.

  19. The function and evolution of Wnt genes in arthropods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murat, Sophie; Hopfen, Corinna; McGregor, Alistair P

    2010-11-01

    Wnt signalling is required for a wide range of developmental processes, from cleavage to patterning and cell migration. There are 13 subfamilies of Wnt ligand genes and this diverse repertoire appeared very early in metazoan evolution. In this review, we first summarise the known Wnt gene repertoire in various arthropods. Insects appear to have lost several Wnt subfamilies, either generally, such as Wnt3, or in lineage specific patterns, for example, the loss of Wnt7 in Anopheles. In Drosophila and Acyrthosiphon, only seven and six Wnt subfamilies are represented, respectively; however, the finding of nine Wnt genes in Tribolium suggests that arthropods had a larger repertoire ancestrally. We then discuss what is currently known about the expression and developmental function of Wnt ligands in Drosophila and other insects in comparison to other arthropods, such as the spiders Achaearanea and Cupiennius. We conclude that studies of Wnt genes have given us much insight into the developmental roles of some of these ligands. However, given the frequent loss of Wnt genes in insects and the derived development of Drosophila, further studies of these important genes are required in a broader range of arthropods to fully understand their developmental function and evolution. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Understanding gene expression in coronary artery disease through ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    The most significant differentially expressed genes from microarray were independently validated by real time PCR in 97 cases and 97 controls. A total of 190 gene transcripts showed significant differential expression (fold change > 2, P < 0.05) between the cases and the controls of which 142 genes were upregulated and ...

  1. Impacts of Macronutrients on Gene Expression: Recent Evidence to Understand Productive and Reproductive Performance of Livestock

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Md. Mahmodul Hasan Sohel

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available In order to identify the effects of nutrients on gene expression and to assess the interactions between genes and nutrition by means of various cutting-edge technologies, the interdisciplinary branch ‘Nutrigenomics’ was created. Therefore, nutrigenomics corresponds to the use of knowledge and techniques of nutrition, genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, epigenomics, and metabolomics to seek and explain the cross-talk between nutrition and genes in molecular level. Macronutrients are important dietary signals that control metabolic programming of cells and have important roles in maintaining cellular homeostasis by influencing specific gene expression. Recent advancements in molecular genetics studies, for instance, use of next-generation sequencing, microarray and qPCR array to investigate the expression of transcripts, genes, and miRNAs, has a crucial impact on understanding and quantitative measurement of the impact of dietary macronutrients on gene function. This review will shade a light on the interactions and mechanisms how the dietary source of macronutrients changes the expression of specific mRNA and miRNA. Furthermore, it will highlight the exciting recent findings in relation to animal performance characteristics which eventually help us to identify a dietary target to improve animal production.

  2. Understanding Control Function and Failure From a Process Perspective

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Heussen, Kai; Lind, Morten

    2012-01-01

    In control design, fault-identification and fault tolerant control, the controlled process is usually perceived as a dynamical process, captured in a mathematical model. The design of a control system for a complex process, however, begins typically long before these mathematical models become...... relevant and available. To consider the role of control functions in process design, a good qualitative understanding of the process as well as of control functions is required. As the purpose of a control function is closely tied to the process functions, its failure has a direct effects on the process...... behaviour and its function. This paper presents a formal methodology for the qualitative representation of control functions in relation to their process context. Different types of relevant process and control abstractions are introduced and their application to formal analysis of control failure modes...

  3. Enhancing Understanding of the Visual Cycle by Applying CRISPR/Cas9 Gene Editing in Zebrafish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca Ward

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available During the vertebrate visual cycle, all-trans-retinal is exported from photoreceptors to the adjacent RPE or Müller glia wherein 11-cis-retinal is regenerated. The 11-cis chromophore is returned to photoreceptors, forming light-sensitive visual pigments with opsin GPCRs. Dysfunction of this process perturbs phototransduction because functional visual pigment cannot be generated. Mutations in visual cycle genes can result in monogenic inherited forms of blindness. Though key enzymatic processes are well characterized, questions remain as to the physiological role of visual cycle proteins in different retinal cell types, functional domains of these proteins in retinoid biochemistry and in vivo pathogenesis of disease mutations. Significant progress is needed to develop effective and accessible treatments for inherited blindness arising from mutations in visual cycle genes. Here, we review opportunities to apply gene editing technology to two crucial visual cycle components, RPE65 and CRALBP. Expressed exclusively in the human RPE, RPE65 enzymatically converts retinyl esters into 11-cis retinal. CRALBP is an 11-cis-retinal binding protein expressed in human RPE and Muller glia. Loss-of-function mutations in either protein results in autosomal recessive forms of blindness. Modeling these human conditions using RPE65 or CRALBP murine knockout models have enhanced our understanding of their biochemical function, associated disease pathogenesis and development of therapeutics. However, rod-dominated murine retinae provide a challenge to assess cone function. The cone-rich zebrafish model is amenable to cost-effective maintenance of a variety of strains. Interestingly, gene duplication in zebrafish resulted in three Rpe65 and two Cralbp isoforms with differential temporal and spatial expression patterns. Functional investigations of zebrafish Rpe65 and Cralbp were restricted to gene knockdown with morpholino oligonucleotides. However, transient

  4. Predictability of Genetic Interactions from Functional Gene Modules

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan H. Young

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Characterizing genetic interactions is crucial to understanding cellular and organismal response to gene-level perturbations. Such knowledge can inform the selection of candidate disease therapy targets, yet experimentally determining whether genes interact is technically nontrivial and time-consuming. High-fidelity prediction of different classes of genetic interactions in multiple organisms would substantially alleviate this experimental burden. Under the hypothesis that functionally related genes tend to share common genetic interaction partners, we evaluate a computational approach to predict genetic interactions in Homo sapiens, Drosophila melanogaster, and Saccharomyces cerevisiae. By leveraging knowledge of functional relationships between genes, we cross-validate predictions on known genetic interactions and observe high predictive power of multiple classes of genetic interactions in all three organisms. Additionally, our method suggests high-confidence candidate interaction pairs that can be directly experimentally tested. A web application is provided for users to query genes for predicted novel genetic interaction partners. Finally, by subsampling the known yeast genetic interaction network, we found that novel genetic interactions are predictable even when knowledge of currently known interactions is minimal.

  5. Understanding Xeroderma Pigmentosum Complementation Groups Using Gene Expression Profiling after UV-Light Exposure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nikola A. Bowden

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Children with the recessive genetic disorder Xeroderma Pigmentosum (XP have extreme sensitivity to UV-light, a 10,000-fold increase in skin cancers from age 2 and rarely live beyond 30 years. There are seven genetic subgroups of XP, which are all resultant of pathogenic mutations in genes in the nucleotide excision repair (NER pathway and a XP variant resultant of a mutation in translesion synthesis, POLH. The clinical symptoms and severity of the disease is varied across the subgroups, which does not correlate with the functional position of the affected protein in the NER pathway. The aim of this study was to further understand the biology of XP subgroups, particularly those that manifest with neurological symptoms. Whole genome gene expression profiling of fibroblasts from each XP complementation group was assessed before and after UV-light exposure. The biological pathways with altered gene expression after UV-light exposure were distinct for each subtype and contained oncogenic related functions such as perturbation of cell cycle, apoptosis, proliferation and differentiation. Patients from the subgroups XP-B and XP-F were the only subgroups to have transcripts associated with neuronal activity altered after UV-light exposure. This study will assist in furthering our understanding of the different subtypes of XP which will lead to better diagnosis, treatment and management of the disease.

  6. miRNA-mediated functional changes through co-regulating function related genes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jie He

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: MicroRNAs play important roles in various biological processes involving fairly complex mechanism. Analysis of genome-wide miRNA microarray demonstrate that a single miRNA can regulate hundreds of genes, but the regulative extent on most individual genes is surprisingly mild so that it is difficult to understand how a miRNA provokes detectable functional changes with such mild regulation. RESULTS: To explore the internal mechanism of miRNA-mediated regulation, we re-analyzed the data collected from genome-wide miRNA microarray with bioinformatics assay, and found that the transfection of miR-181b and miR-34a in Hela and HCT-116 tumor cells regulated large numbers of genes, among which, the genes related to cell growth and cell death demonstrated high Enrichment scores, suggesting that these miRNAs may be important in cell growth and cell death. MiR-181b induced changes in protein expression of most genes that were seemingly related to enhancing cell growth and decreasing cell death, while miR-34a mediated contrary changes of gene expression. Cell growth assays further confirmed this finding. In further study on miR-20b-mediated osteogenesis in hMSCs, miR-20b was found to enhance osteogenesis by activating BMPs/Runx2 signaling pathway in several stages by co-repressing of PPARγ, Bambi and Crim1. CONCLUSIONS: With its multi-target characteristics, miR-181b, miR-34a and miR-20b provoked detectable functional changes by co-regulating functionally-related gene groups or several genes in the same signaling pathway, and thus mild regulation from individual miRNA targeting genes could have contributed to an additive effect. This might also be one of the modes of miRNA-mediated gene regulation.

  7. Discriminative local subspaces in gene expression data for effective gene function prediction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puelma, Tomas; Gutiérrez, Rodrigo A; Soto, Alvaro

    2012-09-01

    Massive amounts of genome-wide gene expression data have become available, motivating the development of computational approaches that leverage this information to predict gene function. Among successful approaches, supervised machine learning methods, such as Support Vector Machines (SVMs), have shown superior prediction accuracy. However, these methods lack the simple biological intuition provided by co-expression networks (CNs), limiting their practical usefulness. In this work, we present Discriminative Local Subspaces (DLS), a novel method that combines supervised machine learning and co-expression techniques with the goal of systematically predict genes involved in specific biological processes of interest. Unlike traditional CNs, DLS uses the knowledge available in Gene Ontology (GO) to generate informative training sets that guide the discovery of expression signatures: expression patterns that are discriminative for genes involved in the biological process of interest. By linking genes co-expressed with these signatures, DLS is able to construct a discriminative CN that links both, known and previously uncharacterized genes, for the selected biological process. This article focuses on the algorithm behind DLS and shows its predictive power using an Arabidopsis thaliana dataset and a representative set of 101 GO terms from the Biological Process Ontology. Our results show that DLS has a superior average accuracy than both SVMs and CNs. Thus, DLS is able to provide the prediction accuracy of supervised learning methods while maintaining the intuitive understanding of CNs. A MATLAB® implementation of DLS is available at http://virtualplant.bio.puc.cl/cgi-bin/Lab/tools.cgi.

  8. Understanding schizoaffective disorder: from psychobiology to psychosocial functioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Correll, Christoph U

    2010-01-01

    Psychobiologic evidence and psychosocial functioning in patients with schizoaffective disorder suggest that the disease may be a distinct disorder, a variant of schizophrenia or affective disorders, the comorbidity of schizophrenia and a mood disorder, or an intermediate disorder on a spectrum that ranges from schizophrenia to mood disorders. These data, although inconclusive, contribute to clinicians' understanding of the etiology of the disorder. Further research may lead to an increased understanding of the disorder, improved treatment, and, ultimately, better outcomes. © Copyright 2010 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.

  9. The Identification and the Functional Validation of Eye Development and Regeneration Genes in Schmidtea Mediterranea

    OpenAIRE

    Calvo Lozano, Beatriz

    2015-01-01

    Discovering the master genes necessary to build the eye in an invertebrate model such as S. mediterranea could help us to understand numerous retinopathies and age-related degeneration of the human eye. The aim of this study was to select and determine the functional activity of genes involved in the regeneration and development of the S. mediterranea eye. Gene ontology was the tool used to select the genes; while RNA interference and RNA hybridization provided the first approach towards esta...

  10. Loss of genes implicated in gastric function during platypus evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ordoñez, Gonzalo R; Hillier, Ladeana W; Warren, Wesley C; Grützner, Frank; López-Otín, Carlos; Puente, Xose S

    2008-01-01

    The duck-billed platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus) belongs to the mammalian subclass Prototheria, which diverged from the Theria line early in mammalian evolution. The platypus genome sequence provides a unique opportunity to illuminate some aspects of the biology and evolution of these animals. We show that several genes implicated in food digestion in the stomach have been deleted or inactivated in platypus. Comparison with other vertebrate genomes revealed that the main genes implicated in the formation and activity of gastric juice have been lost in platypus. These include the aspartyl proteases pepsinogen A and pepsinogens B/C, the hydrochloric acid secretion stimulatory hormone gastrin, and the alpha subunit of the gastric H+/K+-ATPase. Other genes implicated in gastric functions, such as the beta subunit of the H+/K+-ATPase and the aspartyl protease cathepsin E, have been inactivated because of the acquisition of loss-of-function mutations. All of these genes are highly conserved in vertebrates, reflecting a unique pattern of evolution in the platypus genome not previously seen in other mammalian genomes. The observed loss of genes involved in gastric functions might be responsible for the anatomical and physiological differences in gastrointestinal tract between monotremes and other vertebrates, including small size, lack of glands, and high pH of the monotreme stomach. This study contributes to a better understanding of the mechanisms that underlie the evolution of the platypus genome, might extend the less-is-more evolutionary model to monotremes, and provides novel insights into the importance of gene loss events during mammalian evolution.

  11. Phylogenetic and functional gene structure shifts of the oral microbiomes in periodontitis patients

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yan; He, Jinzhi; He, Zhili; Zhou, Yuan; Yuan, Mengting; Xu, Xin; Sun, Feifei; Liu, Chengcheng; Li, Jiyao; Xie, Wenbo; Deng, Ye; Qin, Yujia; VanNostrand, Joy D; Xiao, Liying; Wu, Liyou; Zhou, Jizhong; Shi, Wenyuan; Zhou, Xuedong

    2014-01-01

    Determining the composition and function of subgingival dental plaque is crucial to understanding human periodontal health and disease, but it is challenging because of the complexity of the interactions between human microbiomes and human body. Here, we examined the phylogenetic and functional gene differences between periodontal and healthy individuals using MiSeq sequencing of 16S rRNA gene amplicons and a specific functional gene array (a combination of GeoChip 4.0 for biogeochemical processes and HuMiChip 1.0 for human microbiomes). Our analyses indicated that the phylogenetic and functional gene structure of the oral microbiomes were distinctly different between periodontal and healthy groups. Also, 16S rRNA gene sequencing analysis indicated that 39 genera were significantly different between healthy and periodontitis groups, and Fusobacterium, Porphyromonas, Treponema, Filifactor, Eubacterium, Tannerella, Hallella, Parvimonas, Peptostreptococcus and Catonella showed higher relative abundances in the periodontitis group. In addition, functional gene array data showed that a lower gene number but higher signal intensity of major genes existed in periodontitis, and a variety of genes involved in virulence factors, amino acid metabolism and glycosaminoglycan and pyrimidine degradation were enriched in periodontitis, suggesting their potential importance in periodontal pathogenesis. However, the genes involved in amino acid synthesis and pyrimidine synthesis exhibited a significantly lower relative abundance compared with healthy group. Overall, this study provides new insights into our understanding of phylogenetic and functional gene structure of subgingival microbial communities of periodontal patients and their importance in pathogenesis of periodontitis. PMID:24671083

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Shuwei; Shih, Ching-Hua; Kohn, Michael H

    2010-05-24

    evolutionary rates of male reproductive genes. Given the rarity of the solitary stereotypical gene, and the abundance of gene constellations that deviate from it, the presence of gene constellations, while once thought to be exceptional in large Eukaryote genomes, might have broader relevance to the understanding and study of the genome. However, according to our definition, while gene constellations can be significant correlates of functional properties of genes, they generally are weak correlates of the evolution of genes. Thus, the need for their consideration would depend on the context of studies.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kohn Michael H

    2010-05-01

    observation of high evolutionary rates of male reproductive genes. Conclusion Given the rarity of the solitary stereotypical gene, and the abundance of gene constellations that deviate from it, the presence of gene constellations, while once thought to be exceptional in large Eukaryote genomes, might have broader relevance to the understanding and study of the genome. However, according to our definition, while gene constellations can be significant correlates of functional properties of genes, they generally are weak correlates of the evolution of genes. Thus, the need for their consideration would depend on the context of studies.

  14. Understanding gene expression in coronary artery disease through ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    profiling, network analysis and independent validation of key candidate genes ... P value. A_24_P282416. V-abl Abelson murine leukaemia viral oncogene homolog 1. ABL1. 2.45. 0.0001. A_24_P46130. Acid phosphatase, prostate. ACPP. 2.27. 0.0004 ..... short chain dehydrogenase/reductase family 42E, member 1.

  15. Understanding gene expression in coronary artery disease through ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Molecular mechanism underlying the patho-physiology of coronary artery disease (CAD) is complex. We used global expres- sion profiling combined with analysis of biological network to dissect out potential genes and pathways associated with CAD in a representative case–control Asian Indian cohort. We initially ...

  16. Understanding emergent functions in self-assembled fibrous networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinko, Robert; Keten, Sinan

    2015-09-01

    Understanding self-assembly processes of nanoscale building blocks and characterizing their properties are both imperative for designing new hierarchical, network materials for a wide range of structural, optoelectrical, and transport applications. Although the characterization and choices of these material building blocks have been well studied, our understanding of how to precisely program a specific morphology through self-assembly still must be significantly advanced. In the recent study by Xie et al (2015 Nanotechnology 26 205602), the self-assembly of end-functionalized nanofibres is investigated using a coarse-grained molecular model and offers fundamental insight into how to control the structural morphology of nanofibrous networks. Varying nanoscale networks are observed when the molecular interaction strength is changed and the findings suggest that self-assembly through the tuning of molecular interactions is a key strategy for designing nanostructured networks with specific topologies.

  17. Understanding the Structural Basis of Adhesion GPCR Functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araç, Demet; Sträter, Norbert; Seiradake, Elena

    2016-01-01

    Unlike conventional G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), adhesion GPCRs (aGPCRs) have large extracellular regions that are autoproteolytically cleaved from their membrane-embedded seven-pass transmembrane helices. Autoproteolysis occurs within the conserved GPCR-Autoproteolysis INducing (GAIN) domain that is juxtaposed to the transmembrane domain and cleaves the last beta strand of the GAIN domain. The other domains of the extracellular region are variable and specific to each aGPCR and are likely involved in adhering to various ligands. Emerging evidence suggest that extracellular regions may modulate receptor function and that ligand binding to the extracellular regions may induce receptor activation via multiple mechanisms. Here, we summarize current knowledge about the structural understanding for the extracellular regions of aGPCRs and discuss their possible functional roles that emerge from the available structural information.

  18. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease candidate gene prioritization based on metabolic networks and functional information.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xinyan Wang

    Full Text Available Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD is a multi-factor disease, in which metabolic disturbances played important roles. In this paper, functional information was integrated into a COPD-related metabolic network to assess similarity between genes. Then a gene prioritization method was applied to the COPD-related metabolic network to prioritize COPD candidate genes. The gene prioritization method was superior to ToppGene and ToppNet in both literature validation and functional enrichment analysis. Top-ranked genes prioritized from the metabolic perspective with functional information could promote the better understanding about the molecular mechanism of this disease. Top 100 genes might be potential markers for diagnostic and effective therapies.

  19. Function and evolution of the serotonin-synthetic bas-1 gene and other aromatic amino acid decarboxylase genes in Caenorhabditis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hare Emily E

    2004-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Aromatic L-amino acid decarboxylase (AADC enzymes catalyze the synthesis of biogenic amines, including the neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine, throughout the animal kingdom. These neurotransmitters typically perform important functions in both the nervous system and other tissues, as illustrated by the debilitating conditions that arise from their deficiency. Studying the regulation and evolution of AADC genes is therefore desirable to further our understanding of how nervous systems function and evolve. Results In the nematode C. elegans, the bas-1 gene is required for both serotonin and dopamine synthesis, and maps genetically near two AADC-homologous sequences. We show by transformation rescue and sequencing of mutant alleles that bas-1 encodes an AADC enzyme. Expression of a reporter construct in transgenics suggests that the bas-1 gene is expressed, as expected, in identified serotonergic and dopaminergic neurons. The bas-1 gene is one of six AADC-like sequences in the C. elegans genome, including a duplicate that is immediately downstream of the bas-1 gene. Some of the six AADC genes are quite similar to known serotonin- and dopamine-synthetic AADC's from other organisms whereas others are divergent, suggesting previously unidentified functions. In comparing the AADC genes of C. elegans with those of the congeneric C. briggsae, we find only four orthologous AADC genes in C. briggsae. Two C. elegans AADC genes – those most similar to bas-1 – are missing from C. briggsae. Phylogenetic analysis indicates that one or both of these bas-1-like genes were present in the common ancestor of C. elegans and C. briggsae, and were retained in the C. elegans line, but lost in the C. briggsae line. Further analysis of the two bas-1-like genes in C. elegans suggests that they are unlikely to encode functional enzymes, and may be expressed pseudogenes. Conclusions The bas-1 gene of C. elegans encodes a serotonin- and dopamine

  20. Mining Association Rules among Gene Functions in Clusters of Similar Gene Expression Maps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    An, Li; Obradovic, Zoran; Smith, Desmond; Bodenreider, Olivier; Megalooikonomou, Vasileios

    2009-11-01

    Association rules mining methods have been recently applied to gene expression data analysis to reveal relationships between genes and different conditions and features. However, not much effort has focused on detecting the relation between gene expression maps and related gene functions. Here we describe such an approach to mine association rules among gene functions in clusters of similar gene expression maps on mouse brain. The experimental results show that the detected association rules make sense biologically. By inspecting the obtained clusters and the genes having the gene functions of frequent itemsets, interesting clues were discovered that provide valuable insight to biological scientists. Moreover, discovered association rules can be potentially used to predict gene functions based on similarity of gene expression maps.

  1. DESIGN OF LEARNING MATERIALS ON LIMIT FUNCTION BASED MATHEMATICAL UNDERSTANDING

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muchamad Subali Noto

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available In learning process, students are currently cannot be separated from learning difficulties, including the study material algebra limit function. It because the level of students' mathematical understanding regarding the material is still quite low. This study aimed to analyze the barriers to student learning, designing learning materials based on the material mathematics understanding algebra limit function is valid, determine teacher intervention during the implementation of learning materials and to analyze barriers to student learning after the implementation of learning materials. This research is a qualitative research study design using the form Didactical Design Research. Stages of research conducted: 1 analysis of the situation didactic before learning, 2 analysis of metapedadidatik and 3 the retrospective analysis. Data collection techniques used were tests, interviews, questionnaires, and documentation. The instrument used was a matter TKPM (Comprehension Mathematical Ability Test, interview, validation sheet materials, and documentation guidelines. Research results obtained are students experiencing obstacle to learning the material limit algebra functions. These obstacles are 1 students' difficulties in relating the material prerequisites to limit problems. 2 students can not write properly limit symbol, 3 students can not apply a limit theorem, 4 students are not able to determine the limit value at one point, and 5 students cannot determine the value of the limit at infinity. Learning materials that have been made have validation level of  with very valid criteria. The response was given when the student intervention, generally in accordance with response prediction so that interventions carried out in accordance with the design that has been made. After learning materials student learning obstacles implemented reduced/minimized.

  2. Understanding multicellular function and disease with human tissue-specific networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greene, Casey S.; Krishnan, Arjun; Wong, Aaron K.; Ricciotti, Emanuela; Zelaya, Rene A.; Himmelstein, Daniel S.; Zhang, Ran; Hartmann, Boris M.; Zaslavsky, Elena; Sealfon, Stuart C.; Chasman, Daniel I.; FitzGerald, Garret A.; Dolinski, Kara; Grosser, Tilo; Troyanskaya, Olga G.

    2016-01-01

    Tissue and cell-type identity lie at the core of human physiology and disease. Understanding the genetic underpinnings of complex tissues and individual cell lineages is crucial for developing improved diagnostics and therapeutics. We present genome-wide functional interaction networks for 144 human tissues and cell types developed using a data-driven Bayesian methodology that integrates thousands of diverse experiments spanning tissue and disease states. Tissue-specific networks predict lineage-specific responses to perturbation, reveal genes’ changing functional roles across tissues, and illuminate disease-disease relationships. We introduce NetWAS, which combines genes with nominally significant GWAS p-values and tissue-specific networks to identify disease-gene associations more accurately than GWAS alone. Our webserver, GIANT, provides an interface to human tissue networks through multi-gene queries, network visualization, analysis tools including NetWAS, and downloadable networks. GIANT enables systematic exploration of the landscape of interacting genes that shape specialized cellular functions across more than one hundred human tissues and cell types. PMID:25915600

  3. Gene coexpression network analysis as a source of functional annotation for rice genes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kevin L Childs

    Full Text Available With the existence of large publicly available plant gene expression data sets, many groups have undertaken data analyses to construct gene coexpression networks and functionally annotate genes. Often, a large compendium of unrelated or condition-independent expression data is used to construct gene networks. Condition-dependent expression experiments consisting of well-defined conditions/treatments have also been used to create coexpression networks to help examine particular biological processes. Gene networks derived from either condition-dependent or condition-independent data can be difficult to interpret if a large number of genes and connections are present. However, algorithms exist to identify modules of highly connected and biologically relevant genes within coexpression networks. In this study, we have used publicly available rice (Oryza sativa gene expression data to create gene coexpression networks using both condition-dependent and condition-independent data and have identified gene modules within these networks using the Weighted Gene Coexpression Network Analysis method. We compared the number of genes assigned to modules and the biological interpretability of gene coexpression modules to assess the utility of condition-dependent and condition-independent gene coexpression networks. For the purpose of providing functional annotation to rice genes, we found that gene modules identified by coexpression analysis of condition-dependent gene expression experiments to be more useful than gene modules identified by analysis of a condition-independent data set. We have incorporated our results into the MSU Rice Genome Annotation Project database as additional expression-based annotation for 13,537 genes, 2,980 of which lack a functional annotation description. These results provide two new types of functional annotation for our database. Genes in modules are now associated with groups of genes that constitute a collective functional

  4. Understanding gene essentiality by finely characterizing hubs in the yeast protein interaction network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pang, Kaifang; Sheng, Huanye; Ma, Xiaotu

    2010-10-08

    The centrality-lethality rule, i.e., high-degree proteins or hubs tend to be more essential than low-degree proteins in the yeast protein interaction network, reveals that a protein's central position indicates its important function, but whether and why hubs tend to be more essential have been heavily debated. Here, we integrated gene expression and functional module data to classify hubs into four types: non-co-expressed non-co-cluster hubs, non-co-expressed co-cluster hubs, co-expressed non-co-cluster hubs and co-expressed co-cluster hubs. We found that all the four hub types are more essential than non-hubs, but they also show different enrichments in essential proteins. Non-co-expressed non-co-cluster hubs play key role in organizing different modules formed by the other three hub types, but they are less important to the survival of the yeast cell. Among the four hub types, co-expressed co-cluster hubs, which likely correspond to the core components of stable protein complexes, are the most essential. These results demonstrated that our classification of hubs into four types could better improve the understanding of gene essentiality. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Gene mutations: Understanding the significance using in silico analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K Sanjana Pillay

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Several individuals, from families at risk for genetic diseases, undergoing genetic testing receive results reporting a variant of unknown significance (VUS leading to issues in risk assessment, counseling and preventive care. These variants remain frequently unknown because of the lack of information that could establish their direct correlation with predisposition to a disease. In silico analyses in the past few years has emerged as an efficient tool to classify these variants as being lethal or neutral. Most of these techniques take into consideration the effect of these variants on the structure and function of the protein. The review below describes the significance of in silico analyses in classification of these unknown variants.

  6. Sandy Soil Microaggregates: Rethinking Our Understanding of Hydraulic Function

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Paradiś, Ashley; Brueck, Christopher; Meisenheimer, Douglas; Wanzek, Thomas; Dragila, Maria Ines

    2017-01-01

    This study investigated the peculiar structure of microaggregates in coarse sandy soils that exhibit only external porosity and investigated their control on soil hydrology. The microstructure underpins a hydrologic existence that differs from finer textured soils where aggregates have internal porosity. Understanding the impact of these microaggregates on soil hydrology will permit improved agricultural irrigation management and estimates associated with ecosystem capacity and resiliency. Microstructure was investigated using a digital microscope, and aspects of the structure were quantified by sedimentation and computed microtomography. Sandy soil microaggregates were observed to be comprised of a solid sand-grain core that is coated with fines, presumably cemented by organic media. This microstructure leads to three distinct water pools during drainage: capillary water, followed by thick films (1–20 μm) enveloping the outer surfaces of the crusted microaggregates, followed by adsorbed thin films (<1 μm). The characteristics of the thick films were investigated using an analytical model. These films may provide as much as 10 to 40% saturation in the range of plant-available water. Using lubrication theory, it was predicted that thick film drainage follows a power law function with an exponent of 2. Thick films may also have a role in the geochemical evolution of soils and in ecosystem function because they provide contiguous water and gas phases at relatively high moisture contents. And, because the rough outer crust of these microaggregates can provide good niches for microbial activity, biofilm physics will dominate thick film processes, and consequently hydrologic, biologic, and geochemical functions for coarse sandy soils.

  7. Characterization and Functional Analysis of PEBP Family Genes in Upland Cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Xiaohong; Wang, Congcong; Pang, Chaoyou; Wei, Hengling; Wang, Hantao; Song, Meizhen; Fan, Shuli; Yu, Shuxun

    2016-01-01

    Upland cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) is a naturally occurring photoperiod-sensitive perennial plant species. However, sensitivity to the day length was lost during domestication. The phosphatidylethanolamine-binding protein (PEBP) gene family, of which three subclades have been identified in angiosperms, functions to promote and suppress flowering in photoperiod pathway. Recent evidence indicates that PEBP family genes play an important role in generating mobile flowering signals. We isolated homologues of the PEBP gene family in upland cotton and examined their regulation and function. Nine PEBP-like genes were cloned and phylogenetic analysis indicated the genes belonged to four subclades (FT, MFT, TFL1 and PEBP). Cotton PEBP-like genes showed distinct expression patterns in relation to different cotton genotypes, photoperiod responsive and cultivar maturity. The GhFT gene expression of a semi-wild race of upland cotton were strongly induced under short day condition, whereas the GhPEBP2 gene expression was induced under long days. We also elucidated that GhFT but not GhPEBP2 interacted with FD-like bZIP transcription factor GhFD and promote flowering under both long- and short-day conditions. The present result indicated that GhPEBP-like genes may perform different functions. This work corroborates the involvement of PEBP-like genes in photoperiod response and regulation of flowering time in different cotton genotypes, and contributes to an improved understanding of the function of PEBP-like genes in cotton.

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

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    logous genes and QTL of yield-related traits by silico map- ping and population mapping in O. sativa. Our results revealed that B. napus and O. sativa shared homologous se- quences of genes with similar functions, as well as consistent linkage relationships between genes and agronomic traits. Materials and methods.

  9. Available nitrogen is the key factor influencing soil microbial functional gene diversity in tropical rainforest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cong, Jing; Liu, Xueduan; Lu, Hui; Xu, Han; Li, Yide; Deng, Ye; Li, Diqiang; Zhang, Yuguang

    2015-08-20

    Tropical rainforests cover over 50% of all known plant and animal species and provide a variety of key resources and ecosystem services to humans, largely mediated by metabolic activities of soil microbial communities. A deep analysis of soil microbial communities and their roles in ecological processes would improve our understanding on biogeochemical elemental cycles. However, soil microbial functional gene diversity in tropical rainforests and causative factors remain unclear. GeoChip, contained almost all of the key functional genes related to biogeochemical cycles, could be used as a specific and sensitive tool for studying microbial gene diversity and metabolic potential. In this study, soil microbial functional gene diversity in tropical rainforest was analyzed by using GeoChip technology. Gene categories detected in the tropical rainforest soils were related to different biogeochemical processes, such as carbon (C), nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) cycling. The relative abundance of genes related to C and P cycling detected mostly derived from the cultured bacteria. C degradation gene categories for substrates ranging from labile C to recalcitrant C were all detected, and gene abundances involved in many recalcitrant C degradation gene categories were significantly (P The relative abundance of genes related to N cycling detected was significantly (P the uncultured bacteria. The gene categories related to ammonification had a high relative abundance. Both canonical correspondence analysis and multivariate regression tree analysis showed that soil available N was the most correlated with soil microbial functional gene structure. Overall high microbial functional gene diversity and different soil microbial metabolic potential for different biogeochemical processes were considered to exist in tropical rainforest. Soil available N could be the key factor in shaping the soil microbial functional gene structure and metabolic potential.

  10. Nonviral gene transfection nanoparticles: function and applications in the brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roy, Indrajit; Stachowiak, Michal K; Bergey, Earl J

    2008-06-01

    In vivo transfer and expression of foreign genes allows for the elucidation of functions of genes in living organisms and generation of disease models in animals that more closely resemble the etiology of human diseases. Gene therapy holds promise for the cure of a number of diseases at the fundamental level. Synthetic "nonviral" materials are fast gaining popularity as safe and efficient vectors for delivering genes to target organs. Not only can nanoparticles function as efficient gene carriers, they also can simultaneously carry diagnostic probes for direct "real-time" visualization of gene transfer and downstream processes. This review has focused on the central nervous system (CNS) as the target for nonviral gene transfer, with special emphasis on organically modified silica (ORMOSIL) nanoparticles developed in our laboratory. These nanoparticles have shown robust gene transfer efficiency in brain cells in vivo and allowed to investigate mechanisms that control neurogenesis as well as neurodegenerative disorders.

  11. Functional analysis of the molecular interactions of TATA box-containing genes and essential genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bae, Sang-Hun; Han, Hyun Wook; Moon, Jisook

    2015-01-01

    Genes can be divided into TATA-containing genes and TATA-less genes according to the presence of TATA box elements at promoter regions. TATA-containing genes tend to be stress-responsive, whereas many TATA-less genes are known to be related to cell growth or "housekeeping" functions. In a previous study, we demonstrated that there are striking differences among four gene sets defined by the presence of TATA box (TATA-containing) and essentiality (TATA-less) with respect to number of associated transcription factors, amino acid usage, and functional annotation. Extending this research in yeast, we identified KEGG (Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes) pathways that are statistically enriched in TATA-containing or TATA-less genes and evaluated the possibility that the enriched pathways are related to stress or growth as reflected by the individual functions of the genes involved. According to their enrichment for either of these two gene sets, we sorted KEGG pathways into TATA-containing-gene-enriched pathways (TEPs) and essential-gene-enriched pathways (EEPs). As expected, genes in TEPs and EEPs exhibited opposite results in terms of functional category, transcriptional regulation, codon adaptation index, and network properties, suggesting the possibility that the bipolar patterns in these pathways also contribute to the regulation of the stress response and to cell survival. Our findings provide the novel insight that significant enrichment of TATA-binding or TATA-less genes defines pathways as stress-responsive or growth-related.

  12. Gene-environment interaction and male reproductive function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Axelsson, Jonatan; Bonde, Jens Peter; Giwercman, Yvonne L.; Rylander, Lars; Giwercman, Aleksander

    2010-01-01

    As genetic factors can hardly explain the changes taking place during short time spans, environmental and lifestyle-related factors have been suggested as the causes of time-related deterioration of male reproductive function. However, considering the strong heterogeneity of male fecundity between and within populations, genetic variants might be important determinants of the individual susceptibility to the adverse effects of environment or lifestyle. Although the possible mechanisms of such interplay in relation to the reproductive system are largely unknown, some recent studies have indicated that specific genotypes may confer a larger risk of male reproductive disorders following certain exposures. This paper presents a critical review of animal and human evidence on how genes may modify environmental effects on male reproductive function. Some examples have been found that support this mechanism, but the number of studies is still limited. This type of interaction studies may improve our understanding of normal physiology and help us to identify the risk factors to male reproductive malfunction. We also shortly discuss other aspects of gene-environment interaction specifically associated with the issue of reproduction, namely environmental and lifestyle factors as the cause of sperm DNA damage. It remains to be investigated to what extent such genetic changes, by natural conception or through the use of assisted reproductive techniques, are transmitted to the next generation, thereby causing increased morbidity in the offspring. PMID:20348940

  13. From phenotype to gene: detecting disease-specific gene functional modules via a text-based human disease phenotype network construction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Shihua; Zhang, Shi-Hua; Wu, Chao; Li, Xia; Chen, Xi; Jiang, Wei; Gong, Bin-Sheng; Li, Jiang; Yan, Yu-Qing

    2010-08-20

    Currently, some efforts have been devoted to the text analysis of disease phenotype data, and their results indicated that similar disease phenotypes arise from functionally related genes. These related genes work together, as a functional module, to perform a desired cellular function. We constructed a text-based human disease phenotype network and detected 82 disease-specific gene functional modules, each corresponding to a different phenotype cluster, by means of graph-based clustering and mapping from disease phenotype to gene. Since genes in such gene functional modules are functionally related and cause clinically similar diseases, they may share common genetic origin of their associated disease phenotypes. We believe the investigation may facilitate the ultimate understanding of the common pathophysiologic basis of associated diseases. Copyright 2010 Federation of European Biochemical Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Inferring gene expression dynamics via functional regression analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leng Xiaoyan

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Temporal gene expression profiles characterize the time-dynamics of expression of specific genes and are increasingly collected in current gene expression experiments. In the analysis of experiments where gene expression is obtained over the life cycle, it is of interest to relate temporal patterns of gene expression associated with different developmental stages to each other to study patterns of long-term developmental gene regulation. We use tools from functional data analysis to study dynamic changes by relating temporal gene expression profiles of different developmental stages to each other. Results We demonstrate that functional regression methodology can pinpoint relationships that exist between temporary gene expression profiles for different life cycle phases and incorporates dimension reduction as needed for these high-dimensional data. By applying these tools, gene expression profiles for pupa and adult phases are found to be strongly related to the profiles of the same genes obtained during the embryo phase. Moreover, one can distinguish between gene groups that exhibit relationships with positive and others with negative associations between later life and embryonal expression profiles. Specifically, we find a positive relationship in expression for muscle development related genes, and a negative relationship for strictly maternal genes for Drosophila, using temporal gene expression profiles. Conclusion Our findings point to specific reactivation patterns of gene expression during the Drosophila life cycle which differ in characteristic ways between various gene groups. Functional regression emerges as a useful tool for relating gene expression patterns from different developmental stages, and avoids the problems with large numbers of parameters and multiple testing that affect alternative approaches.

  15. Distinct functions of Egr gene family members in cognitive processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roseline Poirier

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available The different gene members of the Egr family of transcriptional regulators have often been considered to have related functions in brain, based on their co-expression in many cell-types and structures, the relatively high homology of the translated proteins and their ability to bind to the same consensus DNA binding sequence. Recent research, however, suggest this might not be the case. In this review, we focus on the current understanding of the functional roles of the different Egr family members in learning and memory. We briefly outline evidence from mutant mice that Egr1 is required specifically for the consolidation of long-term memory, while Egr3 is primarily essential for short-term memory. We also review our own recent findings from newly generated forebrain-specific conditional Egr2 mutant mice, which revealed that Egr2, as opposed to Egr1 and Egr3, is dispensable for several forms of learning and memory and on the contrary can act as an inhibitory constraint for certain cognitive functions. The studies reviewed here highlight the fact that Egr family members may have different, and in certain circumstances antagonistic functions in the adult brain.

  16. Comparative Auditory Neuroscience: Understanding the Evolution and Function of Ears.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manley, Geoffrey A

    2017-02-01

    Comparative auditory studies make it possible both to understand the origins of modern ears and the factors underlying the similarities and differences in their performance. After all lineages of land vertebrates had independently evolved tympanic middle ears in the early Mesozoic era, the subsequent tens of millions of years led to the hearing organ of lizards, birds, and mammals becoming larger and their upper frequency limits higher. In extant species, lizard papillae remained relatively small (70 mm (made possible by coiling), as do their upper frequency limits (from 12 to >200 kHz). The auditory organs of the three amniote groups differ characteristically in their cellular structure, but their hearing sensitivity and frequency selectivity within their respective hearing ranges hardly differ. In the immediate primate ancestors of humans, the cochlea became larger and lowered its upper frequency limit. Modern humans show an unusual trend in frequency selectivity as a function of frequency. It is conceivable that the frequency selectivity patterns in humans were influenced in their evolution by the development of speech.

  17. Gene-environment interaction and male reproductive function

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Axelsson, Jonatan; Bonde, Jens Peter; Giwercman, Yvonne L

    2010-01-01

    , but the number of studies is still limited. This type of interaction studies may improve our understanding of normal physiology and help us to identify the risk factors to male reproductive malfunction. We also shortly discuss other aspects of gene-environment interaction specifically associated with the issue......As genetic factors can hardly explain the changes taking place during short time spans, environmental and lifestyle-related factors have been suggested as the causes of time-related deterioration of male reproductive function. However, considering the strong heterogeneity of male fecundity between...... and within populations, genetic variants might be important determinants of the individual susceptibility to the adverse effects of environment or lifestyle. Although the possible mechanisms of such interplay in relation to the reproductive system are largely unknown, some recent studies have indicated...

  18. Captured metagenomics: large-scale targeting of genes based on ?sequence capture? reveals functional diversity in soils

    OpenAIRE

    Manoharan, Lokeshwaran; Kushwaha, Sandeep K.; Hedlund, Katarina; Ahr?n, Dag

    2015-01-01

    Microbial enzyme diversity is a key to understand many ecosystem processes. Whole metagenome sequencing (WMG) obtains information on functional genes, but it is costly and inefficient due to large amount of sequencing that is required. In this study, we have applied a captured metagenomics technique for functional genes in soil microorganisms, as an alternative to WMG. Large-scale targeting of functional genes, coding for enzymes related to organic matter degradation, was applied to two agric...

  19. A Nonsynonymous/Synonymous Substitution Analysis of the B56 Gene Family Aids in Understanding B56 Isoform Diversity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Osama Qureshi

    Full Text Available Gene duplication leads to the formation of gene families, wherein purifying or neutral selection maintains the original gene function, while diversifying selection confers new functions onto duplicated genes. The B56 gene family is highly conserved; it is encoded by one gene in protists and fungi, and five genes in vertebrates. B56 regulates protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A, an abundant heterotrimeric serine/threonine phosphatase that functions as a tumor suppressor and consists of a scaffolding "A" and catalytic "C" subunit heterodimer bound to a regulatory "B" subunit. Individual regulatory B56 subunits confer disparate functions onto PP2A in various cell-cell signaling pathways. B56 proteins share a conserved central core domain, but have divergent N- and C-termini which play a role in isoform specificity. We carried out a nonsynonymous/synonymous substitution analysis to better understand the divergence of vertebrate B56 genes. When five B56 paralogs from ten vertebrate species were analyzed, the gene family displayed purifying selection; stronger purifying selection was revealed when individual B56 isoforms were analyzed separately. The B56 core experienced stronger purifying selection than the N- and C-termini, which correlates with the presence of several contacts between the core and the AC heterodimer. Indeed, the majority of the contact points that we analyzed between B56 and the AC heterodimer experienced strong purifying selection. B56 subfamilies showed distinct patterns of selection in their N- and C-termini. The C-terminus of the B56-1 subfamily and the N-terminus of the B56-2 subfamily exhibited strong purifying selection, suggesting that these termini carry out subfamily-specific functions, while the opposite termini exhibited diversifying selection and likely carry out isoform-specific functions. We also found reduced synonymous substitutions at the N- and C-termini when grouping B56 genes by species but not by isoform, suggesting

  20. microRNAs and the mammary gland: a new understanding of gene expression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isabel Gigli

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available MicroRNAs (miRNAs have been identified in cells as well as in exosomes in biological fluids such as milk. In mammary gland, most of the miRNAs studied have functions related to immunity and show alterations in their pattern of expression during lactation. In mastitis, the inflammatory response caused by Streptococcus uberis alters the expression of miRNAs that may regulate the innate immune system. These small RNAs are stable at room temperature and are resistant to repeated freeze/thaw cycles, acidic conditions and degradation by RNAse, making them resistant to industrial procedures. These properties mean that miRNAs could have multiple applications in veterinary medicine and biotechnology. Indeed, lactoglobulin-free milk has been produced in transgenic cows expressing specific miRNAs. Although plant and animal miRNAs have undergone independent evolutionary adaptation recent studies have demonstrated a cross-kingdom passage in which rice miRNA was isolated from human serum. This finding raises questions about the possible effect that miRNAs present in foods consumed by humans could have on human gene regulation. Further studies are needed before applying miRNA biotechnology to the milk industry. New discoveries and a greater knowledge of gene expression will lead to a better understanding of the role of miRNAs in physiology, nutrition and evolution.

  1. Organisation and functions of class II genes and molecules

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Beck, S.; Belich, M.; Gruneberg, U.; Jackson, A.; Kelly, A.; Sanseau, P.; Sanderson, F.; Trowsdale, J.; van Ham, M.

    1996-01-01

    The class II region of the human MHC contains all of the known class II genes: as well as antigen processing components and only one gene not obviously associated with the immune system, RING3. As an approach to understanding linkage disequilibrium and recombination in relation to polymorphism of

  2. A new measure for functional similarity of gene products based on Gene Ontology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lengauer Thomas

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Gene Ontology (GO is a standard vocabulary of functional terms and allows for coherent annotation of gene products. These annotations provide a basis for new methods that compare gene products regarding their molecular function and biological role. Results We present a new method for comparing sets of GO terms and for assessing the functional similarity of gene products. The method relies on two semantic similarity measures; simRel and funSim. One measure (simRel is applied in the comparison of the biological processes found in different groups of organisms. The other measure (funSim is used to find functionally related gene products within the same or between different genomes. Results indicate that the method, in addition to being in good agreement with established sequence similarity approaches, also provides a means for the identification of functionally related proteins independent of evolutionary relationships. The method is also applied to estimating functional similarity between all proteins in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and to visualizing the molecular function space of yeast in a map of the functional space. A similar approach is used to visualize the functional relationships between protein families. Conclusion The approach enables the comparison of the underlying molecular biology of different taxonomic groups and provides a new comparative genomics tool identifying functionally related gene products independent of homology. The proposed map of the functional space provides a new global view on the functional relationships between gene products or protein families.

  3. Analysis of phylogenetic and functional diverge in plant nine-cis epoxycarotenoid dioxygenase gene family.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Priya, R; Siva, Ramamoorthy

    2015-07-01

    During different environmental stress conditions, plant growth is regulated by the hormone abscisic acid (an apocarotenoid). In the biosynthesis of abscisic acid, the oxidative cleavage of cis-epoxycarotenoid catalyzed by 9-cis-epoxycarotenoid dioxygenase (NCED) is the crucial step. The NCED genes were isolated in numerous plant species and those genes were phylogenetically investigated to understand the evolution of NCED genes in various plant lineages comprising lycophyte, gymnosperm, dicot and monocot. A total of 93 genes were obtained from 48 plant species to statistically estimate their sequence conservation and functional divergence. Selaginella moellendorffii appeared to be evolutionarily distinct from those of the angiosperms, insisting the substantial influence of natural selection pressure on NCED genes. Further, using exon-intron structure analysis, the gene structures of NCED were found to be conserved across some species. In addition, the substitution rate ratio of non-synonymous (Ka) versus synonymous (Ks) mutations using the Bayesian inference approach, depicted the critical amino acid residues for functional divergence. A significant functional divergence was found between some subgroups through the co-efficient of type-I functional divergence. Our results suggest that the evolution of NCED genes occurred by duplication, diversification and exon intron loss events. The site-specific profile and functional diverge analysis revealed NCED genes might facilitate the tissue-specific functional divergence in NCED sub-families, that could combat different environmental stress conditions aiding plant survival.

  4. Trait-based approaches for understanding microbial biodiversity and ecosystem functioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krause, Sascha; Le Roux, Xavier; Niklaus, Pascal A; Van Bodegom, Peter M; Lennon, Jay T; Bertilsson, Stefan; Grossart, Hans-Peter; Philippot, Laurent; Bodelier, Paul L E

    2014-01-01

    In ecology, biodiversity-ecosystem functioning (BEF) research has seen a shift in perspective from taxonomy to function in the last two decades, with successful application of trait-based approaches. This shift offers opportunities for a deeper mechanistic understanding of the role of biodiversity in maintaining multiple ecosystem processes and services. In this paper, we highlight studies that have focused on BEF of microbial communities with an emphasis on integrating trait-based approaches to microbial ecology. In doing so, we explore some of the inherent challenges and opportunities of understanding BEF using microbial systems. For example, microbial biologists characterize communities using gene phylogenies that are often unable to resolve functional traits. Additionally, experimental designs of existing microbial BEF studies are often inadequate to unravel BEF relationships. We argue that combining eco-physiological studies with contemporary molecular tools in a trait-based framework can reinforce our ability to link microbial diversity to ecosystem processes. We conclude that such trait-based approaches are a promising framework to increase the understanding of microbial BEF relationships and thus generating systematic principles in microbial ecology and more generally ecology.

  5. Trait-based approaches for understanding microbial biodiversity and ecosystem functioning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sascha eKrause

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available In ecology, biodiversity-ecosystem functioning (BEF research has seen a shift in perspective from taxonomy to function in the last two decades, with successful application of trait-based approaches. This shift offers opportunities for a deeper mechanistic understanding of the role of biodiversity in maintaining multiple ecosystem processes and services. In this paper, we highlight studies that have focused on BEF of microbial communities with an emphasis on integrating trait-based approaches to microbial ecology. In doing so, we explore some of the inherent challenges and opportunities of understanding BEF using microbial systems. For example, microbial biologists characterize communities using gene phylogenies that are often unable to resolve functional traits. Additionally, experimental designs of existing microbial BEF studies are often inadequate to unravel BEF relationships. We argue that combining eco-physiological studies with contemporary molecular tools in a trait-based framework can reinforce our ability to link microbial diversity to ecosystem processes. We conclude that such trait-based approaches are a promising framework to increase the understanding of microbial BEF relationships and thus generating systematic principles in microbial ecology and more generally ecology.

  6. Trait-based approaches for understanding microbial biodiversity and ecosystem functioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krause, Sascha; Le Roux, Xavier; Niklaus, Pascal A.; Van Bodegom, Peter M.; Lennon, Jay T.; Bertilsson, Stefan; Grossart, Hans-Peter; Philippot, Laurent; Bodelier, Paul L. E.

    2014-01-01

    In ecology, biodiversity-ecosystem functioning (BEF) research has seen a shift in perspective from taxonomy to function in the last two decades, with successful application of trait-based approaches. This shift offers opportunities for a deeper mechanistic understanding of the role of biodiversity in maintaining multiple ecosystem processes and services. In this paper, we highlight studies that have focused on BEF of microbial communities with an emphasis on integrating trait-based approaches to microbial ecology. In doing so, we explore some of the inherent challenges and opportunities of understanding BEF using microbial systems. For example, microbial biologists characterize communities using gene phylogenies that are often unable to resolve functional traits. Additionally, experimental designs of existing microbial BEF studies are often inadequate to unravel BEF relationships. We argue that combining eco-physiological studies with contemporary molecular tools in a trait-based framework can reinforce our ability to link microbial diversity to ecosystem processes. We conclude that such trait-based approaches are a promising framework to increase the understanding of microbial BEF relationships and thus generating systematic principles in microbial ecology and more generally ecology. PMID:24904563

  7. Rolling Circle Mutagenesis of GST-mCherry to Understand Mutation, Gene Expression, and Regulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica Cole

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Undergraduates are often familiar with textbook examples of human mutations that affect coding regions and the subsequent disorders, but they may struggle with understanding the implications of mutations in the regulatory regions of genes. We have designed a laboratory sequence that will allow students to explore the effect random mutagenesis can have on protein function, expression, and ultimately phenotype. Students design and perform a safe and time-efficient random mutagenesis experiment using error-prone rolling circular amplification of a plasmid expressing the inducible fusion protein glutathione S-transferase (GST-mCherry. Mutagenized and wild-type control plasmid DNA, respectively, are then purified and transformed into bacteria to assess phenotypic changes. While bacteria transformed with the wild type control should be pink, some bacterial colonies transformed with mutagenized plasmids will exhibit a different color. Students attempt to identify their mutations by isolating plasmid from these mutant colonies, sequencing, and comparing their mutant sequence to the wild-type sequence. Additionally, students evaluate the potential effects of mutations on protein production by inducing GST-mCherry expression in cultures, generating cell lysates, and analyzing them using SDS-PAGE. Students who have a phenotypic difference but do not obtain a coding region mutation will be able to think critically about plasmid structure and regulation outside of the gene sequence. Students who do not obtain bacterial transformants have the chance to contemplate how mutation of antibiotic resistance genes or replication origins may have contributed to their results. Overall, this series of laboratories exposes students to basic genetic techniques and helps them conceptualize mutation beyond coding regions.

  8. Hair pulling disorder (trichotillomania): genes, neurobiology, and a model for understanding impulsivity and compulsivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flessner, Christopher A; Knopik, Valerie S; McGeary, John

    2012-10-30

    Hair pulling disorder (trichotillomania) affects at least 3.7 million people in the United States and results in marked functional impairment. This article reviews empirical research investigating the genetics and neurobiology of hair pulling disorder (HPD). We also discuss recent advances in the characterization of this phenotype which have led to evidence supporting the existence of at least two disparate pulling styles-automatic and focused pulling. These pulling styles exhibit facets of behavioral processes, impulsivity and compulsivity, characteristic of several classes of disorders (e.g., obsessive-compulsive spectrum disorders, impulse control disorders). Available genetic, neurobiological, and clinical data support the importance of impulsivity for conceptualizing HPD. Impulsivity alone is insufficient to fully understand this complex phenotype. Characterizations of both automatic and focused pulling as well as preliminary findings from affective neuroscience across species highlight the importance of compulsivity for understanding HPD. Opposing and complementary aspects to impulsivity-compulsivity provide a more comprehensive conceptualization of HPD and supports HPD's potential importance for advancing scientific inquiry in relation to the pathogenesis and treatment of related phenotypes. This review concludes with a description of areas-phenotype, neurobiology, and genes-in need of further study. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Exploiting ontology graph for predicting sparsely annotated gene function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Sheng; Cho, Hyunghoon; Zhai, ChengXiang; Berger, Bonnie; Peng, Jian

    2015-06-15

    Systematically predicting gene (or protein) function based on molecular interaction networks has become an important tool in refining and enhancing the existing annotation catalogs, such as the Gene Ontology (GO) database. However, functional labels with only a few (algorithm that independently considers each label faces a paucity of information and thus is prone to capture non-generalizable patterns in the data, resulting in poor predictive performance. There exist a variety of algorithms for function prediction, but none properly address this 'overfitting' issue of sparsely annotated functions, or do so in a manner scalable to tens of thousands of functions in the human catalog. We propose a novel function prediction algorithm, clusDCA, which transfers information between similar functional labels to alleviate the overfitting problem for sparsely annotated functions. Our method is scalable to datasets with a large number of annotations. In a cross-validation experiment in yeast, mouse and human, our method greatly outperformed previous state-of-the-art function prediction algorithms in predicting sparsely annotated functions, without sacrificing the performance on labels with sufficient information. Furthermore, we show that our method can accurately predict genes that will be assigned a functional label that has no known annotations, based only on the ontology graph structure and genes associated with other labels, which further suggests that our method effectively utilizes the similarity between gene functions. https://github.com/wangshenguiuc/clusDCA. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press.

  10. Methods for transient assay of gene function in floral tissues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pathirana Nilangani N

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background There is considerable interest in rapid assays or screening systems for assigning gene function. However, analysis of gene function in the flowers of some species is restricted due to the difficulty of producing stably transformed transgenic plants. As a result, experimental approaches based on transient gene expression assays are frequently used. Biolistics has long been used for transient over-expression of genes of interest, but has not been exploited for gene silencing studies. Agrobacterium-infiltration has also been used, but the focus primarily has been on the transient transformation of leaf tissue. Results Two constructs, one expressing an inverted repeat of the Antirrhinum majus (Antirrhinum chalcone synthase gene (CHS and the other an inverted repeat of the Antirrhinum transcription factor gene Rosea1, were shown to effectively induce CHS and Rosea1 gene silencing, respectively, when introduced biolistically into petal tissue of Antirrhinum flowers developing in vitro. A high-throughput vector expressing the Antirrhinum CHS gene attached to an inverted repeat of the nos terminator was also shown to be effective. Silencing spread systemically to create large zones of petal tissue lacking pigmentation, with transmission of the silenced state spreading both laterally within the affected epidermal cell layer and into lower cell layers, including the epidermis of the other petal surface. Transient Agrobacterium-mediated transformation of petal tissue of tobacco and petunia flowers in situ or detached was also achieved, using expression of the reporter genes GUS and GFP to visualise transgene expression. Conclusion We demonstrate the feasibility of using biolistics-based transient RNAi, and transient transformation of petal tissue via Agrobacterium infiltration to study gene function in petals. We have also produced a vector for high throughput gene silencing studies, incorporating the option of using T-A cloning to

  11. Developing high-performance cross-functional teams: Understanding motivations, functional loyalties, and teaming fundamentals

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Miller, M.A.

    1996-08-01

    Teamwork is the key to the future of effective technology management. Today`s technologies and markets have become too complex for individuals to work alone. Global competition, limited resources, cost consciousness, and time pressures have forced organizations and project managers to encourage teamwork. Many of these teams will be cross-functional teams that can draw on a multitude of talents and knowledge. To develop high-performing cross-functional teams, managers must understand motivations, functional loyalties, and the different backgrounds of the individual team members. To develop a better understanding of these issues, managers can learn from experience and from literature on teams and teaming concepts. When studying the literature to learn about cross-functional teaming, managers will find many good theoretical concepts, but when put into practice, these concepts have varying effects. This issue of varying effectiveness is what drives the research for this paper. The teaming concepts were studied to confirm or modify current understanding. The literature was compared with a {open_quotes}ground truth{close_quotes}, a survey of the reality of teaming practices, to examine the teaming concepts that the literature finds to be critical to the success of teams. These results are compared to existing teams to determine if such techniques apply in real-world cases.

  12. Ascribing Functions to Genes: Journey Towards Genetic Improvement of Rice Via Functional Genomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mustafiz, Ananda; Kumari, Sumita; Karan, Ratna

    2016-06-01

    Rice, one of the most important cereal crops for mankind, feeds more than half the world population. Rice has been heralded as a model cereal owing to its small genome size, amenability to easy transformation, high synteny to other cereal crops and availability of complete genome sequence. Moreover, sequence wealth in rice is getting more refined and precise due to resequencing efforts. This humungous resource of sequence data has confronted research fraternity with a herculean challenge as well as an excellent opportunity to functionally validate expressed as well as regulatory portions of the genome. This will not only help us in understanding the genetic basis of plant architecture and physiology but would also steer us towards developing improved cultivars. No single technique can achieve such a mammoth task. Functional genomics through its diverse tools viz. loss and gain of function mutants, multifarious omics strategies like transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics and phenomics provide us with the necessary handle. A paradigm shift in technological advances in functional genomics strategies has been instrumental in generating considerable amount of information w.r.t functionality of rice genome. We now have several databases and online resources for functionally validated genes but despite that we are far from reaching the desired milestone of functionally characterizing each and every rice gene. There is an urgent need for a common platform, for information already available in rice, and collaborative efforts between researchers in a concerted manner as well as healthy public-private partnership, for genetic improvement of rice crop better able to handle the pressures of climate change and exponentially increasing population.

  13. Combining many interaction networks to predict gene function and analyze gene lists.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mostafavi, Sara; Morris, Quaid

    2012-05-01

    In this article, we review how interaction networks can be used alone or in combination in an automated fashion to provide insight into gene and protein function. We describe the concept of a "gene-recommender system" that can be applied to any large collection of interaction networks to make predictions about gene or protein function based on a query list of proteins that share a function of interest. We discuss these systems in general and focus on one specific system, GeneMANIA, that has unique features and uses different algorithms from the majority of other systems. © 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  14. 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

    2018-03-05

    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 non-toxin 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 (> 100X coverage) and used these data to provide new insights into conotoxin evolution. First, we found that conotoxin gene superfamilies are composed of 1-6 exons and are typically short in length (mean = ∼85bp). Second, we expanded our understanding of the following genetic features of conotoxin evolution: (a) positive selection, where exons coding the mature toxin region were often three times more divergent than their adjacent noncoding regions, (b) 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 (c) extensive gene turnover, where Conidae species varied from 120-859 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.

  15. In silico prioritisation of candidate genes for prokaryotic gene function discovery: an application of phylogenetic profiles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Frank P Y; Coiera, Enrico; Lan, Ruiting; Sintchenko, Vitali

    2009-03-17

    In silico candidate gene prioritisation (CGP) aids the discovery of gene functions by ranking genes according to an objective relevance score. While several CGP methods have been described for identifying human disease genes, corresponding methods for prokaryotic gene function discovery are lacking. Here we present two prokaryotic CGP methods, based on phylogenetic profiles, to assist with this task. Using gene occurrence patterns in sample genomes, we developed two CGP methods (statistical and inductive CGP) to assist with the discovery of bacterial gene functions. Statistical CGP exploits the differences in gene frequency against phenotypic groups, while inductive CGP applies supervised machine learning to identify gene occurrence pattern across genomes. Three rediscovery experiments were designed to evaluate the CGP frameworks. The first experiment attempted to rediscover peptidoglycan genes with 417 published genome sequences. Both CGP methods achieved best areas under receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) of 0.911 in Escherichia coli K-12 (EC-K12) and 0.978 Streptococcus agalactiae 2603 (SA-2603) genomes, with an average improvement in precision of >3.2-fold and a maximum of >27-fold using statistical CGP. A median AUC of >0.95 could still be achieved with as few as 10 genome examples in each group of genome examples in the rediscovery of the peptidoglycan metabolism genes. In the second experiment, a maximum of 109-fold improvement in precision was achieved in the rediscovery of anaerobic fermentation genes in EC-K12. The last experiment attempted to rediscover genes from 31 metabolic pathways in SA-2603, where 14 pathways achieved AUC >0.9 and 28 pathways achieved AUC >0.8 with the best inductive CGP algorithms. Our results demonstrate that the two CGP methods can assist with the study of functionally uncategorised genomic regions and discovery of bacterial gene-function relationships. Our rediscovery experiments also provide a set of standard tasks

  16. In silico prioritisation of candidate genes for prokaryotic gene function discovery: an application of phylogenetic profiles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lan Ruiting

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In silico candidate gene prioritisation (CGP aids the discovery of gene functions by ranking genes according to an objective relevance score. While several CGP methods have been described for identifying human disease genes, corresponding methods for prokaryotic gene function discovery are lacking. Here we present two prokaryotic CGP methods, based on phylogenetic profiles, to assist with this task. Results Using gene occurrence patterns in sample genomes, we developed two CGP methods (statistical and inductive CGP to assist with the discovery of bacterial gene functions. Statistical CGP exploits the differences in gene frequency against phenotypic groups, while inductive CGP applies supervised machine learning to identify gene occurrence pattern across genomes. Three rediscovery experiments were designed to evaluate the CGP frameworks. The first experiment attempted to rediscover peptidoglycan genes with 417 published genome sequences. Both CGP methods achieved best areas under receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC of 0.911 in Escherichia coli K-12 (EC-K12 and 0.978 Streptococcus agalactiae 2603 (SA-2603 genomes, with an average improvement in precision of >3.2-fold and a maximum of >27-fold using statistical CGP. A median AUC of >0.95 could still be achieved with as few as 10 genome examples in each group of genome examples in the rediscovery of the peptidoglycan metabolism genes. In the second experiment, a maximum of 109-fold improvement in precision was achieved in the rediscovery of anaerobic fermentation genes in EC-K12. The last experiment attempted to rediscover genes from 31 metabolic pathways in SA-2603, where 14 pathways achieved AUC >0.9 and 28 pathways achieved AUC >0.8 with the best inductive CGP algorithms. Conclusion Our results demonstrate that the two CGP methods can assist with the study of functionally uncategorised genomic regions and discovery of bacterial gene-function relationships. Our

  17. Functionally enigmatic genes: a case study of the brain ignorome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ashutosh K Pandey

    Full Text Available What proportion of genes with intense and selective expression in specific tissues, cells, or systems are still almost completely uncharacterized with respect to biological function? In what ways do these functionally enigmatic genes differ from well-studied genes? To address these two questions, we devised a computational approach that defines so-called ignoromes. As proof of principle, we extracted and analyzed a large subset of genes with intense and selective expression in brain. We find that publications associated with this set are highly skewed--the top 5% of genes absorb 70% of the relevant literature. In contrast, approximately 20% of genes have essentially no neuroscience literature. Analysis of the ignorome over the past decade demonstrates that it is stubbornly persistent, and the rapid expansion of the neuroscience literature has not had the expected effect on numbers of these genes. Surprisingly, ignorome genes do not differ from well-studied genes in terms of connectivity in coexpression networks. Nor do they differ with respect to numbers of orthologs, paralogs, or protein domains. The major distinguishing characteristic between these sets of genes is date of discovery, early discovery being associated with greater research momentum--a genomic bandwagon effect. Finally we ask to what extent massive genomic, imaging, and phenotype data sets can be used to provide high-throughput functional annotation for an entire ignorome. In a majority of cases we have been able to extract and add significant information for these neglected genes. In several cases--ELMOD1, TMEM88B, and DZANK1--we have exploited sequence polymorphisms, large phenome data sets, and reverse genetic methods to evaluate the function of ignorome genes.

  18. Functionally Enigmatic Genes: A Case Study of the Brain Ignorome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pandey, Ashutosh K.; Lu, Lu; Wang, Xusheng; Homayouni, Ramin; Williams, Robert W.

    2014-01-01

    What proportion of genes with intense and selective expression in specific tissues, cells, or systems are still almost completely uncharacterized with respect to biological function? In what ways do these functionally enigmatic genes differ from well-studied genes? To address these two questions, we devised a computational approach that defines so-called ignoromes. As proof of principle, we extracted and analyzed a large subset of genes with intense and selective expression in brain. We find that publications associated with this set are highly skewed—the top 5% of genes absorb 70% of the relevant literature. In contrast, approximately 20% of genes have essentially no neuroscience literature. Analysis of the ignorome over the past decade demonstrates that it is stubbornly persistent, and the rapid expansion of the neuroscience literature has not had the expected effect on numbers of these genes. Surprisingly, ignorome genes do not differ from well-studied genes in terms of connectivity in coexpression networks. Nor do they differ with respect to numbers of orthologs, paralogs, or protein domains. The major distinguishing characteristic between these sets of genes is date of discovery, early discovery being associated with greater research momentum—a genomic bandwagon effect. Finally we ask to what extent massive genomic, imaging, and phenotype data sets can be used to provide high-throughput functional annotation for an entire ignorome. In a majority of cases we have been able to extract and add significant information for these neglected genes. In several cases—ELMOD1, TMEM88B, and DZANK1—we have exploited sequence polymorphisms, large phenome data sets, and reverse genetic methods to evaluate the function of ignorome genes. PMID:24523945

  19. The ALMT Gene Family Performs Multiple Functions in Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jie Liu

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available The aluminium activated malate transporter (ALMT gene family is named after the first member of the family identified in wheat (Triticum aestivum L.. The product of this gene controls resistance to aluminium (Al toxicity. ALMT genes encode transmembrane proteins that function as anion channels and perform multiple functions involving the transport of organic anions (e.g., carboxylates and inorganic anions in cells. They share a PF11744 domain and are classified in the Fusaric acid resistance protein-like superfamily, CL0307. The proteins typically have five to seven transmembrane regions in the N-terminal half and a long hydrophillic C-terminal tail but predictions of secondary structure vary. Although widely spread in plants, relatively little information is available on the roles performed by other members of this family. In this review, we summarized functions of ALMT gene families, including Al resistance, stomatal function, mineral nutrition, microbe interactions, fruit acidity, light response and seed development.

  20. Developmentally distinct MYB genes encode functionally equivalent proteins in Arabidopsis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, M M; Schiefelbein, J

    2001-05-01

    The duplication and divergence of developmental control genes is thought to have driven morphological diversification during the evolution of multicellular organisms. To examine the molecular basis of this process, we analyzed the functional relationship between two paralogous MYB transcription factor genes, WEREWOLF (WER) and GLABROUS1 (GL1), in Arabidopsis. The WER and GL1 genes specify distinct cell types and exhibit non-overlapping expression patterns during Arabidopsis development. Nevertheless, reciprocal complementation experiments with a series of gene fusions showed that WER and GL1 encode functionally equivalent proteins, and their unique roles in plant development are entirely due to differences in their cis-regulatory sequences. Similar experiments with a distantly related MYB gene (MYB2) showed that its product cannot functionally substitute for WER or GL1. Furthermore, an analysis of the WER and GL1 proteins shows that conserved sequences correspond to specific functional domains. These results provide new insights into the evolution of the MYB gene family in Arabidopsis, and, more generally, they demonstrate that novel developmental gene function may arise solely by the modification of cis-regulatory sequences.

  1. Genomic and Functional Approaches to Understanding Cancer Aneuploidy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Alison M; Shih, Juliann; Ha, Gavin; Gao, Galen F; Zhang, Xiaoyang; Berger, Ashton C; Schumacher, Steven E; Wang, Chen; Hu, Hai; Liu, Jianfang; Lazar, Alexander J; Cherniack, Andrew D; Beroukhim, Rameen; Meyerson, Matthew

    2018-04-09

    Aneuploidy, whole chromosome or chromosome arm imbalance, is a near-universal characteristic of human cancers. In 10,522 cancer genomes from The Cancer Genome Atlas, aneuploidy was correlated with TP53 mutation, somatic mutation rate, and expression of proliferation genes. Aneuploidy was anti-correlated with expression of immune signaling genes, due to decreased leukocyte infiltrates in high-aneuploidy samples. Chromosome arm-level alterations show cancer-specific patterns, including loss of chromosome arm 3p in squamous cancers. We applied genome engineering to delete 3p in lung cells, causing decreased proliferation rescued in part by chromosome 3 duplication. This study defines genomic and phenotypic correlates of cancer aneuploidy and provides an experimental approach to study chromosome arm aneuploidy. Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. A genetic approach to understanding asthma and lung function development

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kreiner-Møller, Eskil

    2014-01-01

    Asthma is a common heritable disease of the airways with recurrent episodes of symptoms and reversible airflow obstruction that has increased dramatically in prevalence. The disease is highly heterogeneous with varying age at onset and clinical presentation and most likely represents several...... their effect. In paper I, we investigated the known effect of adult lung function loci on the development of lung function and bronchial responsiveness in children from birth until 7 years of age in the COPSAC2000 birth cohort of 411 children. We measured lung function and bronchial responsiveness at one month...... of age using the raised volume rapid thoracoabdominal compression technique in sedated neonates and repeated the measurements at age 7 utilizing traditional spirometry assessments. Lung function genetic variants identified in adults were not associated with neonatal lung function or bronchial...

  3. Bioinformatics tools for predicting GPCR gene functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suwa, Makiko

    2014-01-01

    The automatic classification of GPCRs by bioinformatics methodology can provide functional information for new GPCRs in the whole 'GPCR proteome' and this information is important for the development of novel drugs. Since GPCR proteome is classified hierarchically, general ways for GPCR function prediction are based on hierarchical classification. Various computational tools have been developed to predict GPCR functions; those tools use not simple sequence searches but more powerful methods, such as alignment-free methods, statistical model methods, and machine learning methods used in protein sequence analysis, based on learning datasets. The first stage of hierarchical function prediction involves the discrimination of GPCRs from non-GPCRs and the second stage involves the classification of the predicted GPCR candidates into family, subfamily, and sub-subfamily levels. Then, further classification is performed according to their protein-protein interaction type: binding G-protein type, oligomerized partner type, etc. Those methods have achieved predictive accuracies of around 90 %. Finally, I described the future subject of research of the bioinformatics technique about functional prediction of GPCR.

  4. Identification and functional analysis of ‘hypothetical’ genes expressed in Haemophilus influenzae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolker, Eugene; Makarova, Kira S.; Shabalina, Svetlana; Picone, Alex F.; Purvine, Samuel; Holzman, Ted; Cherny, Tim; Armbruster, David; Munson, Robert S.; Kolesov, Grigory; Frishman, Dmitrij; Galperin, Michael Y.

    2004-01-01

    The progress in genome sequencing has led to a rapid accumulation in GenBank submissions of uncharacterized ‘hypothetical’ genes. These genes, which have not been experimentally characterized and whose functions cannot be deduced from simple sequence comparisons alone, now comprise a significant fraction of the public databases. Expression analyses of Haemophilus influenzae cells using a combination of transcriptomic and proteomic approaches resulted in confident identification of 54 ‘hypothetical’ genes that were expressed in cells under normal growth conditions. In an attempt to understand the functions of these proteins, we used a variety of publicly available analysis tools. Close homologs in other species were detected for each of the 54 ‘hypothetical’ genes. For 16 of them, exact functional assignments could be found in one or more public databases. Additionally, we were able to suggest general functional characterization for 27 more genes (comprising ∼80% total). Findings from this analysis include the identification of a pyruvate-formate lyase-like operon, likely to be expressed not only in H.influenzae but also in several other bacteria. Further, we also observed three genes that are likely to participate in the transport and/or metabolism of sialic acid, an important component of the H.influenzae lipo-oligosaccharide. Accurate functional annotation of uncharacterized genes calls for an integrative approach, combining expression studies with extensive computational analysis and curation, followed by eventual experimental verification of the computational predictions. PMID:15121896

  5. Hox gene function and interaction in the milkweed bug Oncopeltus fasciatus (Hemiptera).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angelini, David R; Liu, Paul Z; Hughes, Cynthia L; Kaufman, Thomas C

    2005-11-15

    Studies in genetic model organisms such as Drosophila have demonstrated that the homeotic complex (Hox) genes impart segmental identity during embryogenesis. Comparative studies in a wide range of other insect taxa have shown that the Hox genes are expressed in largely conserved domains along the anterior-posterior body axis, but whether they are performing the same functions in different insects is an open question. Most of the Hox genes have been studied functionally in only a few holometabolous insects that undergo metamorphosis. Thus, it is unclear how the Hox genes are functioning in the majority of direct-developing insects and other arthropods. To address this question, we used a combination of RNAi and in situ hybridization to reveal the expression, functions, and regulatory interactions of the Hox genes in the milkweed bug Oncopeltus fasciatus. Our results reveal many similarities and some interesting differences compared to Drosophila. We find that the gene Antennapedia is required for the identity of all three thoracic segments, while Ultrabithorax, abdominal-A and Abdominal-B cooperate to pattern the abdomen. The three abdominal genes exhibit posterior prevalence like in Drosophila, but apparently via some post-transcriptional mechanism. The functions of the head genes proboscipedia, Deformed, and Sex combs reduced were shown previously, and here we find that the complex temporal expression of pb in the labium is like that of other insects, but its regulatory relationship with Scr is unique. Overall, our data reveal that the evolution of insect Hox genes has included many small changes within general conservation of expression and function, and that the milkweed bug provides a useful model for understanding the roles of Hox genes in a direct-developing insect.

  6. Ranking, selecting, and prioritising genes with desirability functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stanley E. Lazic

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available In functional genomics experiments, researchers often select genes to follow-up or validate from a long list of differentially expressed genes. Typically, sharp thresholds are used to bin genes into groups such as significant/non-significant or fold change above/below a cut-off value, and ad hoc criteria are also used such as favouring well-known genes. Binning, however, is inefficient and does not take the uncertainty of the measurements into account. Furthermore, p-values, fold-changes, and other outcomes are treated as equally important, and relevant genes may be overlooked with such an approach. Desirability functions are proposed as a way to integrate multiple selection criteria for ranking, selecting, and prioritising genes. These functions map any variable to a continuous 0–1 scale, where one is maximally desirable and zero is unacceptable. Multiple selection criteria are then combined to provide an overall desirability that is used to rank genes. In addition to p-values and fold-changes, further experimental results and information contained in databases can be easily included as criteria. The approach is demonstrated with a breast cancer microarray data set. The functions and an example data set can be found in the desiR package on CRAN (https://cran.r-project.org/web/packages/desiR/ and the development version is available on GitHub (https://github.com/stanlazic/desiR.

  7. Comparative Auditory Neuroscience: Understanding the Evolution and Function of Ears

    OpenAIRE

    Manley, Geoffrey A.

    2016-01-01

    Comparative auditory studies make it possible both to understand the origins of modern ears and the factors underlying the similarities and differences in their performance. After all lineages of land vertebrates had independently evolved tympanic middle ears in the early Mesozoic era, the subsequent tens of millions of years led to the hearing organ of lizards, birds, and mammals becoming larger and their upper frequency limits higher. In extant species, lizard papillae remained relatively s...

  8. Gene-environment interactions involving functional variants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Barrdahl, Myrto; Rudolph, Anja; Hopper, John L

    2017-01-01

    epidemiological breast cancer risk factors in relation to breast cancer. Analyses were conducted on up to 58,573 subjects (26,968 cases and 31,605 controls) from the Breast Cancer Association Consortium, in one of the largest studies of its kind. Analyses were carried out separately for estrogen receptor (ER.......01. The strongest interaction result in relation to overall breast cancer risk was found between CFLAR-rs7558475 and current smoking (ORint  = 0.77, 95% CI: 0.67-0.88, pint  = 1.8 × 10(-4) ). The interaction with the strongest statistical evidence was found between 5q14-rs7707921 and alcohol consumption (ORint =1.......36, 95% CI: 1.16-1.59, pint  = 1.9 × 10(-5) ) in relation to ER- disease risk. The remaining two gene-environment interactions were also identified in relation to ER- breast cancer risk and were found between 3p21-rs6796502 and age at menarche (ORint  = 1.26, 95% CI: 1.12-1.43, pint =1.8 × 10...

  9. Functional Analysis of an ATP-Binding Cassette Transporter Gene in Botrytis cinerea by Gene Disruption

    OpenAIRE

    Masami, NAKAJIMA; Junko, SUZUKI; Takehiko, HOSAKA; Tadaaki, HIBI; Katsumi, AKUTSU; School of Agriculture, Ibaraki University; School of Agriculture, Ibaraki University; School of Agriculture, Ibaraki University; Department of Agriculture and Environmental Biology, The University of Tokyo; School of Agriculture, Ibaraki University

    2001-01-01

    The BMR1 gene encoding an ABC transporter was cloned from Botrytis cinerea. To examine the function of BMR1 in B.cinerea, we isolated BMR1-deficient mutants after gene disruption. Disruption vector pBcDF4 was constructed by replacing the BMR1-coding region with a hygromycin B phosphotransferase gene(hph)cassette. The BMR1 disruptants had an increased sensitivity to polyoxin and iprobenfos. Polyoxin and iprobenfos, structurally unrelated compounds, may therefore be substrates of BMR1.

  10. Engaging Students in a Bioinformatics Activity to Introduce Gene Structure and Function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara J. May

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Bioinformatics spans many fields of biological research and plays a vital role in mining and analyzing data. Therefore, there is an ever-increasing need for students to understand not only what can be learned from this data, but also how to use basic bioinformatics tools.  This activity is designed to provide secondary and undergraduate biology students to a hands-on activity meant to explore and understand gene structure with the use of basic bioinformatic tools.  Students are provided an “unknown” sequence from which they are asked to use a free online gene finder program to identify the gene. Students then predict the putative function of this gene with the use of additional online databases.

  11. The effect of functional compensation among duplicate genes can ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Gene duplicates have the inherent property of initially being functionally redundant. This means that they can compensate for the effect of deleterious variation occurring at one or more sister sites. Here, I present data bearing on evolutionary theory that illustrates the manner in which any functional adaptation in duplicate ...

  12. The effect of functional compensation among duplicate genes can ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Abstract. Gene duplicates have the inherent property of initially being functionally redundant. This means that they can compensate for the effect of deleterious variation occurring at one or more sister sites. Here, I present data bearing on evolutionary theory that illustrates the manner in which any functional adaptation in ...

  13. Associations among False Belief Understanding, Counterfactual Reasoning, and Executive Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guajardo, Nicole R.; Parker, Jessica; Turley-Ames, Kandi

    2009-01-01

    The primary purposes of the present study were to clarify previous work on the association between counterfactual thinking and false belief performance to determine (1) whether these two variables are related and (2) if so, whether executive function skills mediate the relationship. A total of 92 3-, 4-, and 5-year-olds completed false belief,…

  14. Understanding and quantifying urban forest structure, functions, and value

    Science.gov (United States)

    David J. Nowak; Daniel E. Crane; Jeffrey T. Walton; Daniel B. Twardus; John F. Dwyer

    2002-01-01

    Trees in urban areas can have a significant impact on human health and the environment. Unfortunately, there is relatively little data about the structure, health, functions, and long-term changes in this important resource. In the United States, a number of efforts are underway to assess urban forest attributes at the local to national scales. In addition, tools are...

  15. Bioinformatic prediction and functional characterization of human KIAA0100 gene

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    He Cui

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Our previous study demonstrated that human KIAA0100 gene was a novel acute monocytic leukemia-associated antigen (MLAA gene. But the functional characterization of human KIAA0100 gene has remained unknown to date. Here, firstly, bioinformatic prediction of human KIAA0100 gene was carried out using online softwares; Secondly, Human KIAA0100 gene expression was downregulated by the clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR/CRISPR-associated (Cas 9 system in U937 cells. Cell proliferation and apoptosis were next evaluated in KIAA0100-knockdown U937 cells. The bioinformatic prediction showed that human KIAA0100 gene was located on 17q11.2, and human KIAA0100 protein was located in the secretory pathway. Besides, human KIAA0100 protein contained a signalpeptide, a transmembrane region, three types of secondary structures (alpha helix, extended strand, and random coil , and four domains from mitochondrial protein 27 (FMP27. The observation on functional characterization of human KIAA0100 gene revealed that its downregulation inhibited cell proliferation, and promoted cell apoptosis in U937 cells. To summarize, these results suggest human KIAA0100 gene possibly comes within mitochondrial genome; moreover, it is a novel anti-apoptotic factor related to carcinogenesis or progression in acute monocytic leukemia, and may be a potential target for immunotherapy against acute monocytic leukemia.

  16. Molecular and Functional Characterization of Broccoli EMBRYONIC FLOWER 2 Genes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Long-Fang O.; Lin, Chun-Hung; Lai, Ying-Mi; Huang, Jia-Yuan; Sung, Zinmay Renee

    2012-01-01

    Polycomb group (PcG) proteins regulate major developmental processes in Arabidopsis. EMBRYONIC FLOWER 2 (EMF2), the VEFS domain-containing PcG gene, regulates diverse genetic pathways and is required for vegetative development and plant survival. Despite widespread EMF2-like sequences in plants, little is known about their function other than in Arabidopsis and rice. To study the role of EMF2 in broccoli (Brassica oleracea var. italica cv. Elegance) development, we identified two broccoli EMF2 (BoEMF2) genes with sequence homology to and a similar gene expression pattern to that in Arabidopsis (AtEMF2). Reducing their expression in broccoli resulted in aberrant phenotypes and gene expression patterns. BoEMF2 regulates genes involved in diverse developmental and stress programs similar to AtEMF2 in Arabidopsis. However, BoEMF2 differs from AtEMF2 in the regulation of flower organ identity, cell proliferation and elongation, and death-related genes, which may explain the distinct phenotypes. The expression of BoEMF2.1 in the Arabidopsis emf2 mutant (Rescued emf2) partially rescued the mutant phenotype and restored the gene expression pattern to that of the wild type. Many EMF2-mediated molecular and developmental functions are conserved in broccoli and Arabidopsis. Furthermore, the restored gene expression pattern in Rescued emf2 provides insights into the molecular basis of PcG-mediated growth and development. PMID:22537758

  17. Homeobox genes and tooth development: Understanding the biological pathways and applications in regenerative dental science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramanathan, Anand; Srijaya, Thekkeparambil Chandrabose; Sukumaran, Prema; Zain, Rosnah Binti; Abu Kasim, Noor Hayaty

    2018-01-01

    Homeobox genes are a group of conserved class of transcription factors that function as key regulators during the embryonic developmental processes. They act as master regulator for developmental genes, which involves coordinated actions of various auto and cross-regulatory mechanisms. In this review, we summarize the expression pattern of homeobox genes in relation to the tooth development and various signaling pathways or molecules contributing to the specific actions of these genes in the regulation of odontogenesis. An electronic search was undertaken using combination of keywords e.g. Homeobox genes, tooth development, dental diseases, stem cells, induced pluripotent stem cells, gene control region was used as search terms in PubMed and Web of Science and relevant full text articles and abstract were retrieved that were written in English. A manual hand search in text books were also carried out. Articles related to homeobox genes in dentistry and tissue engineering and regenerative medicine of odontogenesis were selected. The possible perspective of stem cells technology in odontogenesis and subsequent analysis of gene correction pertaining to dental disorders through the possibility of induced pluripotent stem cells technology is also inferred. We demonstrate the promising role of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine on odontogenesis, which can generate a new ray of hope in the field of dental science. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Automated discovery of functional generality of human gene expression programs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Georg K Gerber

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available An important research problem in computational biology is the identification of expression programs, sets of co-expressed genes orchestrating normal or pathological processes, and the characterization of the functional breadth of these programs. The use of human expression data compendia for discovery of such programs presents several challenges including cellular inhomogeneity within samples, genetic and environmental variation across samples, uncertainty in the numbers of programs and sample populations, and temporal behavior. We developed GeneProgram, a new unsupervised computational framework based on Hierarchical Dirichlet Processes that addresses each of the above challenges. GeneProgram uses expression data to simultaneously organize tissues into groups and genes into overlapping programs with consistent temporal behavior, to produce maps of expression programs, which are sorted by generality scores that exploit the automatically learned groupings. Using synthetic and real gene expression data, we showed that GeneProgram outperformed several popular expression analysis methods. We applied GeneProgram to a compendium of 62 short time-series gene expression datasets exploring the responses of human cells to infectious agents and immune-modulating molecules. GeneProgram produced a map of 104 expression programs, a substantial number of which were significantly enriched for genes involved in key signaling pathways and/or bound by NF-kappaB transcription factors in genome-wide experiments. Further, GeneProgram discovered expression programs that appear to implicate surprising signaling pathways or receptor types in the response to infection, including Wnt signaling and neurotransmitter receptors. We believe the discovered map of expression programs involved in the response to infection will be useful for guiding future biological experiments; genes from programs with low generality scores might serve as new drug targets that exhibit minimal

  19. Functional health literacy and healthy eating: Understanding the brazilian food guide recommendations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Auristela Magalhães Coelho

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To assess the relationship between the functional health literacy of Unified Heath System users and the understanding of food servings in the pocket version of the Brazilian Food Guide. Methods: Functional health literacy was assessed by the Brief Test of functional health literacy. Two dialogue rounds were conducted with patients with adequate functional health literacy (Group 1 and inadequate functional health literacy (Group 2. The dialogues were recorded and analyzed according to the discourse of the collective subject. Results: Most (58.0% users had inadequate functional health literacy. Five core areas were identified: understands serving sizes; does not understand serving sizes; serving sizes are confusing; unfamiliar/uncommon foods; small letters. Group 2 had more trouble understanding. Conclusion: Difficulty understanding hinders health promotion. Individuals need to have access to educational materials that are easier to understand and developed taking their functional health literacy into account.

  20. Nitrogen cycling in corals: the key to understanding holobiont functioning?

    KAUST Repository

    Rädecker, Nils

    2015-04-01

    Corals are animals that form close mutualistic associations with endosymbiotic photosynthetic algae of the genus Symbiodinium. Together they provide the calcium carbonate framework of coral reef ecosystems. The importance of the microbiome (i.e., bacteria, archaea, fungi, and viruses) to holobiont functioning has only recently been recognized. Given that growth and density of Symbiodinium within the coral host is highly dependent on nitrogen availability, nitrogen-cycling microbes may be of fundamental importance to the stability of the coral–algae symbiosis and holobiont functioning, in particular under nutrient-enriched and -depleted scenarios. We summarize what is known about nitrogen cycling in corals and conclude that disturbance of microbial nitrogen cycling may be tightly linked to coral bleaching and disease.

  1. Global profiling of Shewanella oneidensis MR-1: Expression of hypothetical genes and improved functional annotations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Picone, Alex F. [Biatech, Bothell WA; Galperin, Michael Y. [National Center for Biotechnology Information; Romine, Margaret [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL); Higdon, Roger [Biatech, Bothell WA; Makarova, Kira S. [National Center for Biotechnology Information; Kolker, Natali [Biatech, Bothell WA; Anderson, Gordon A [ORNL; Qiu, Xiaoyun [ORNL; Babnigg, Gyorgy [Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL); Beliaev, Alexander S [ORNL; Edlefsen, Paul [Biatech, Bothell WA; Elias, Dwayne A. [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL); Gorby, Dr. Yuri A. [J. Craig Venter Institute; Holzman, Ted [Biatech, Bothell WA; Klappenbach, Joel [Michigan State University, East Lansing; Konstantinidis, Konstantinos T [Michigan State University, East Lansing; Land, Miriam L [ORNL; Lipton, Mary S. [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL); McCue, Lee Ann [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL); Monroe, Matthew [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL); Pasa-Tolic, Ljiljana [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL); Pinchuk, Grigoriy [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL); Purvine, Samuel [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL); Serres, Margrethe H. [Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), Woods Hole, MA; Tsapin, Sasha [University of Southern California; Zakrajsek, Brian A. [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL); Zhu, Wenguang [Harvard University; Zhou, Jizhong [University of Oklahoma; Larimer, Frank W [ORNL; Lawrence, Charles E. [Wadsworth Center, Albany, NY; Riley, Monica [Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), Woods Hole, MA; Collart, Frank [Argonne National Laboratory (ANL); YatesIII, John R. [Scripps Research Institute, The, La Jolla, CA; Smith, Richard D. [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL); Nealson, Kenneth H. [University of Southern California; Fredrickson, James K [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL); Tiedje, James M. [Michigan State University, East Lansing

    2005-01-01

    The gamma-proteobacterium Shewanella oneidensis strain MR-1 is a metabolically versatile organism that can reduce a wide range of organic compounds, metal ions, and radionuclides. Similar to most other sequenced organisms, approximate to40% of the predicted ORFs in the S. oneidensis genome were annotated as uncharacterized "hypothetical" genes. We implemented an integrative approach by using experimental and computational analyses to provide more detailed insight into gene function. Global expression profiles were determined for cells after UV irradiation and under aerobic and suboxic growth conditions. Transcriptomic and proteomic analyses confidently identified 538 hypothetical genes as expressed in S. oneidensis cells both as mRNAs and proteins (33% of all predicted hypothetical proteins). Publicly available analysis tools and databases and the expression data were applied to improve the annotation of these genes. The annotation results were scored by using a seven-category schema that ranked both confidence and precision of the functional assignment. We were able to identify homologs for nearly all of these hypothetical proteins (97%), but could confidently assign exact biochemical functions for only 16 proteins (category 1; 3%). Altogether, computational and experimental evidence provided functional assignments or insights for 240 more genes (categories 2-5; 45%). These functional annotations advance our understanding of genes involved in vital cellular processes, including energy conversion, ion transport, secondary metabolism, and signal transduction. We propose that this integrative approach offers a valuable means to undertake the enormous challenge of characterizing the rapidly growing number of hypothetical proteins with each newly sequenced genome.

  2. Polyploidization altered gene functions in cotton (Gossypium spp.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Zhanyou; Yu, John Z; Cho, Jaemin; Yu, Jing; Kohel, Russell J; Percy, Richard G

    2010-12-16

    Cotton (Gossypium spp.) is an important crop plant that is widely grown to produce both natural textile fibers and cottonseed oil. Cotton fibers, the economically more important product of the cotton plant, are seed trichomes derived from individual cells of the epidermal layer of the seed coat. It has been known for a long time that large numbers of genes determine the development of cotton fiber, and more recently it has been determined that these genes are distributed across At and Dt subgenomes of tetraploid AD cottons. In the present study, the organization and evolution of the fiber development genes were investigated through the construction of an integrated genetic and physical map of fiber development genes whose functions have been verified and confirmed. A total of 535 cotton fiber development genes, including 103 fiber transcription factors, 259 fiber development genes, and 173 SSR-contained fiber ESTs, were analyzed at the subgenome level. A total of 499 fiber related contigs were selected and assembled. Together these contigs covered about 151 Mb in physical length, or about 6.7% of the tetraploid cotton genome. Among the 499 contigs, 397 were anchored onto individual chromosomes. Results from our studies on the distribution patterns of the fiber development genes and transcription factors between the At and Dt subgenomes showed that more transcription factors were from Dt subgenome than At, whereas more fiber development genes were from At subgenome than Dt. Combining our mapping results with previous reports that more fiber QTLs were mapped in Dt subgenome than At subgenome, the results suggested a new functional hypothesis for tetraploid cotton. After the merging of the two diploid Gossypium genomes, the At subgenome has provided most of the genes for fiber development, because it continues to function similar to its fiber producing diploid A genome ancestor. On the other hand, the Dt subgenome, with its non-fiber producing D genome ancestor

  3. Students' Understanding of the General Notion of a Function of Two Variables

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez-Planell, Rafael; Trigueros Gaisman, Maria

    2012-01-01

    In this study we analyze students' understanding of two-variable function; in particular we consider their understanding of domain, possible arbitrary nature of function assignment, uniqueness of function image, and range. We use APOS theory and semiotic representation theory as a theoretical framework to analyze data obtained from interviews with…

  4. Function and Diversification of MADS-Box Genes in Rice

    OpenAIRE

    Takahiro Yamaguchi; Hiro-Yuki Hirano

    2006-01-01

    MADS-box genes play critical roles in a number of developmental processes in flowering plants, such as specification of floral organ identity, control of flowering time, and regulation of fruit development. Because of their crucial functions in flower development, diversification of the MADS-box gene family has been suggested to be a major factor responsible for floral diversity during radiation of the flowering plants. Inflorescences and flowers in the grass species have unique structures th...

  5. An attempt to understand kidney's protein handling function by comparing plasma and urine proteomes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lulu Jia

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: With the help of proteomics technology, the human plasma and urine proteomes, which closely represent the protein compositions of the input and output of the kidney, respectively, have been profiled in much greater detail by different research teams. Many datasets have been accumulated to form "reference profiles" of the plasma and urine proteomes. Comparing these two proteomes may help us understand the protein handling aspect of kidney function in a way, however, which has been unavailable until the recent advances in proteomics technology. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: After removing secreted proteins downstream of the kidney, 2611 proteins in plasma and 1522 in urine were identified with high confidence and compared based on available proteomic data to generate three subproteomes, the plasma-only subproteome, the plasma-and-urine subproteome, and the urine-only subproteome, and they correspond to three groups of proteins that are handled in three different ways by the kidney. The available experimental molecular weights of the proteins in the three subproteomes were collected and analyzed. Since the functions of the overrepresented proteins in the plasma-and-urine subproteome are probably the major functions that can be routinely regulated by excretion from the kidney in physiological conditions, Gene Ontology term enrichment in the plasma-and-urine subproteome versus the whole plasma proteome was analyzed. Protease activity, calcium and growth factor binding proteins, and coagulation and immune response-related proteins were found to be enriched. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: The comparison method described in this paper provides an illustration of a new approach for studying organ functions with a proteomics methodology. Because of its distinctive input (plasma and output (urine, it is reasonable to predict that the kidney will be the first organ whose functions are further elucidated by proteomic methods in the near future. It

  6. Functional Gene Diversity and Metabolic Potential of the Microbial Community in an Estuary-Shelf Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu Wang

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Microbes play crucial roles in various biogeochemical processes in the ocean, including carbon (C, nitrogen (N, and phosphorus (P cycling. Functional gene diversity and the structure of the microbial community determines its metabolic potential and therefore its ecological function in the marine ecosystem. However, little is known about the functional gene composition and metabolic potential of bacterioplankton in estuary areas. The East China Sea (ECS is a dynamic marginal ecosystem in the western Pacific Ocean that is mainly affected by input from the Changjiang River and the Kuroshio Current. Here, using a high-throughput functional gene microarray (GeoChip, we analyzed the functional gene diversity, composition, structure, and metabolic potential of microbial assemblages in different ECS water masses. Four water masses determined by temperature and salinity relationship showed different patterns of functional gene diversity and composition. Generally, functional gene diversity [Shannon–Weaner’s H and reciprocal of Simpson’s 1/(1-D] in the surface water masses was higher than that in the bottom water masses. The different presence and proportion of functional genes involved in C, N, and P cycling among the bacteria of the different water masses showed different metabolic preferences of the microbial populations in the ECS. Genes involved in starch metabolism (amyA and nplT showed higher proportion in microbial communities of the surface water masses than of the bottom water masses. In contrast, a higher proportion of genes involved in chitin degradation was observed in microorganisms of the bottom water masses. Moreover, we found a higher proportion of nitrogen fixation (nifH, transformation of hydroxylamine to nitrite (hao and ammonification (gdh genes in the microbial communities of the bottom water masses compared with those of the surface water masses. The spatial variation of microbial functional genes was significantly correlated

  7. Functional Gene Diversity and Metabolic Potential of the Microbial Community in an Estuary-Shelf Environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yu; Zhang, Rui; He, Zhili; Van Nostrand, Joy D; Zheng, Qiang; Zhou, Jizhong; Jiao, Nianzhi

    2017-01-01

    Microbes play crucial roles in various biogeochemical processes in the ocean, including carbon (C), nitrogen (N), and phosphorus (P) cycling. Functional gene diversity and the structure of the microbial community determines its metabolic potential and therefore its ecological function in the marine ecosystem. However, little is known about the functional gene composition and metabolic potential of bacterioplankton in estuary areas. The East China Sea (ECS) is a dynamic marginal ecosystem in the western Pacific Ocean that is mainly affected by input from the Changjiang River and the Kuroshio Current. Here, using a high-throughput functional gene microarray (GeoChip), we analyzed the functional gene diversity, composition, structure, and metabolic potential of microbial assemblages in different ECS water masses. Four water masses determined by temperature and salinity relationship showed different patterns of functional gene diversity and composition. Generally, functional gene diversity [Shannon-Weaner's H and reciprocal of Simpson's 1/(1- D )] in the surface water masses was higher than that in the bottom water masses. The different presence and proportion of functional genes involved in C, N, and P cycling among the bacteria of the different water masses showed different metabolic preferences of the microbial populations in the ECS. Genes involved in starch metabolism ( amyA and nplT ) showed higher proportion in microbial communities of the surface water masses than of the bottom water masses. In contrast, a higher proportion of genes involved in chitin degradation was observed in microorganisms of the bottom water masses. Moreover, we found a higher proportion of nitrogen fixation ( nifH ), transformation of hydroxylamine to nitrite ( hao ) and ammonification ( gdh ) genes in the microbial communities of the bottom water masses compared with those of the surface water masses. The spatial variation of microbial functional genes was significantly correlated with

  8. Stably Expressed Genes Involved in Basic Cellular Functions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kejian Wang

    Full Text Available Stably Expressed Genes (SEGs whose expression varies within a narrow range may be involved in core cellular processes necessary for basic functions. To identify such genes, we re-analyzed existing RNA-Seq gene expression profiles across 11 organs at 4 developmental stages (from immature to old age in both sexes of F344 rats (n = 4/group; 320 samples. Expression changes (calculated as the maximum expression / minimum expression for each gene of >19000 genes across organs, ages, and sexes ranged from 2.35 to >109-fold, with a median of 165-fold. The expression of 278 SEGs was found to vary ≤4-fold and these genes were significantly involved in protein catabolism (proteasome and ubiquitination, RNA transport, protein processing, and the spliceosome. Such stability of expression was further validated in human samples where the expression variability of the homologous human SEGs was significantly lower than that of other genes in the human genome. It was also found that the homologous human SEGs were generally less subject to non-synonymous mutation than other genes, as would be expected of stably expressed genes. We also found that knockout of SEG homologs in mouse models was more likely to cause complete preweaning lethality than non-SEG homologs, corroborating the fundamental roles played by SEGs in biological development. Such stably expressed genes and pathways across life-stages suggest that tight control of these processes is important in basic cellular functions and that perturbation by endogenous (e.g., genetics or exogenous agents (e.g., drugs, environmental factors may cause serious adverse effects.

  9. Understanding Epistatic Interactions between Genes Targeted by Non-coding Regulatory Elements in Complex Diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Min Kyung Sung

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Genome-wide association studies have proven the highly polygenic architecture of complex diseases or traits; therefore, single-locus-based methods are usually unable to detect all involved loci, especially when individual loci exert small effects. Moreover, the majority of associated single-nucleotide polymorphisms resides in non-coding regions, making it difficult to understand their phenotypic contribution. In this work, we studied epistatic interactions associated with three common diseases using Korea Association Resource (KARE data: type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM, hypertension (HT, and coronary artery disease (CAD. We showed that epistatic single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs were enriched in enhancers, as well as in DNase I footprints (the Encyclopedia of DNA Elements [ENCODE] Project Consortium 2012, which suggested that the disruption of the regulatory regions where transcription factors bind may be involved in the disease mechanism. Accordingly, to identify the genes affected by the SNPs, we employed whole-genome multiple-cell-type enhancer data which discovered using DNase I profiles and Cap Analysis Gene Expression (CAGE. Assigned genes were significantly enriched in known disease associated gene sets, which were explored based on the literature, suggesting that this approach is useful for detecting relevant affected genes. In our knowledge-based epistatic network, the three diseases share many associated genes and are also closely related with each other through many epistatic interactions. These findings elucidate the genetic basis of the close relationship between DM, HT, and CAD.

  10. Insertional Mutagenesis for Genes involved in Otic/Vestibular Development and Function in Xenopus Tropicalis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torrejon, Marcela; Li, Erica; Nguyen, Minh; Winfree, Seth; Wang, Esther; Reinsch, Sigrid; Dalton, Bonnie (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    Sensitivity to gravity is essential for spatial orientation. Consequently, the gravity receptor system is one of the phylogenetically oldest sensory systems, and the special adaptations that enhance sensitivity to gravity are highly conserved. The main goal of this project is to use Xenopus (frog) to identify genes expressed during vestibular and auditory development. These studies will lead a better understanding of the molecular mechanisms involved in vestibular and auditory development and function. We are using a gene-trap approach in Xenopus tropicalis with the green fluorescent protein (GFP) gene as the transgene reporter. GFP expression occurs only when the GFP gene is correctly integrated in actively transcribed genes. Using the GFP as a tag we can easily identify and clone the mutated gene. In addition, we can study the function of the mutated gene by analyzing the defects generated by insertion of the GFP transgene. To date we have tissue specific GFP expression in X. tropicalis including expression in ear, neural tube, kidney, muscle, eyes and nose. Our transgenic animals will soon reach maturity so that we can outcross them and analyze their progeny. Our next goal is to isolate RNA from our transgenics and clone the tagged genes using RACE-PCR. Currently we are optimizing the RACE-PCR method using transgenics with crystallin GFP expression.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    V, DE CRECY-LAGARD; D, HANSON A

    2012-01-03

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

  12. DAVID Knowledgebase: a gene-centered database integrating heterogeneous gene annotation resources to facilitate high-throughput gene functional analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Baseler Michael W

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Due to the complex and distributed nature of biological research, our current biological knowledge is spread over many redundant annotation databases maintained by many independent groups. Analysts usually need to visit many of these bioinformatics databases in order to integrate comprehensive annotation information for their genes, which becomes one of the bottlenecks, particularly for the analytic task associated with a large gene list. Thus, a highly centralized and ready-to-use gene-annotation knowledgebase is in demand for high throughput gene functional analysis. Description The DAVID Knowledgebase is built around the DAVID Gene Concept, a single-linkage method to agglomerate tens of millions of gene/protein identifiers from a variety of public genomic resources into DAVID gene clusters. The grouping of such identifiers improves the cross-reference capability, particularly across NCBI and UniProt systems, enabling more than 40 publicly available functional annotation sources to be comprehensively integrated and centralized by the DAVID gene clusters. The simple, pair-wise, text format files which make up the DAVID Knowledgebase are freely downloadable for various data analysis uses. In addition, a well organized web interface allows users to query different types of heterogeneous annotations in a high-throughput manner. Conclusion The DAVID Knowledgebase is designed to facilitate high throughput gene functional analysis. For a given gene list, it not only provides the quick accessibility to a wide range of heterogeneous annotation data in a centralized location, but also enriches the level of biological information for an individual gene. Moreover, the entire DAVID Knowledgebase is freely downloadable or searchable at http://david.abcc.ncifcrf.gov/knowledgebase/.

  13. The Drosophila melanogaster methuselah gene: a novel gene with ancient functions.

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    Ana Rita Araújo

    Full Text Available The Drosophila melanogaster G protein-coupled receptor gene, methuselah (mth, has been described as a novel gene that is less than 10 million years old. Nevertheless, it shows a highly specific expression pattern in embryos, larvae, and adults, and has been implicated in larval development, stress resistance, and in the setting of adult lifespan, among others. Although mth belongs to a gene subfamily with 16 members in D. melanogaster, there is no evidence for functional redundancy in this subfamily. Therefore, it is surprising that a novel gene influences so many traits. Here, we explore the alternative hypothesis that mth is an old gene. Under this hypothesis, in species distantly related to D. melanogaster, there should be a gene with features similar to those of mth. By performing detailed phylogenetic, synteny, protein structure, and gene expression analyses we show that the D. virilis GJ12490 gene is the orthologous of mth in species distantly related to D. melanogaster. We also show that, in D. americana (a species of the virilis group of Drosophila, a common amino acid polymorphism at the GJ12490 orthologous gene is significantly associated with developmental time, size, and lifespan differences. Our results imply that GJ12490 orthologous genes are candidates for developmental time and lifespan differences in Drosophila in general.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2007-01-01

    , and may therefore predate multicellularity, is still unknown. To better understand the origin and evolution of alternative splicing and its usage in diverse organisms, we studied alternative splicing in 12 eukaryotic species, comparing rates of alternative splicing across genes of different functional...... classes, cellular locations, intron/exon structures and evolutionary origins. RESULTS: For each species, we find that genes from most functional categories are alternatively spliced. Ancient genes (shared between animals, fungi and plants) show high levels of alternative splicing. Genes with products...

  15. Assessing the functional coherence of gene sets with metrics based on the Gene Ontology graph.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richards, Adam J; Muller, Brian; Shotwell, Matthew; Cowart, L Ashley; Rohrer, Bäerbel; Lu, Xinghua

    2010-06-15

    The results of initial analyses for many high-throughput technologies commonly take the form of gene or protein sets, and one of the ensuing tasks is to evaluate the functional coherence of these sets. The study of gene set function most commonly makes use of controlled vocabulary in the form of ontology annotations. For a given gene set, the statistical significance of observing these annotations or 'enrichment' may be tested using a number of methods. Instead of testing for significance of individual terms, this study is concerned with the task of assessing the global functional coherence of gene sets, for which novel metrics and statistical methods have been devised. The metrics of this study are based on the topological properties of graphs comprised of genes and their Gene Ontology annotations. A novel aspect of these methods is that both the enrichment of annotations and the relationships among annotations are considered when determining the significance of functional coherence. We applied our methods to perform analyses on an existing database and on microarray experimental results. Here, we demonstrated that our approach is highly discriminative in terms of differentiating coherent gene sets from random ones and that it provides biologically sensible evaluations in microarray analysis. We further used examples to show the utility of graph visualization as a tool for studying the functional coherence of gene sets. The implementation is provided as a freely accessible web application at: http://projects.dbbe.musc.edu/gosteiner. Additionally, the source code written in the Python programming language, is available under the General Public License of the Free Software Foundation. Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

  16. Application of a novel functional gene microarray to probe the functional ecology of ammonia oxidation in nitrifying activated sludge.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael D Short

    Full Text Available We report on the first study trialling a newly-developed, functional gene microarray (FGA for characterising bacterial and archaeal ammonia oxidisers in activated sludge. Mixed liquor (ML and media biofilm samples from a full-scale integrated fixed-film activated sludge (IFAS plant were analysed with the FGA to profile the diversity and relative abundance of ammonia-oxidising archaea and bacteria (AOA and AOB respectively. FGA analyses of AOA and AOB communities revealed ubiquitous distribution of AOA across all samples - an important finding for these newly-discovered and poorly characterised organisms. Results also revealed striking differences in the functional ecology of attached versus suspended communities within the IFAS reactor. Quantitative assessment of AOB and AOA functional gene abundance revealed a dominance of AOB in the ML and approximately equal distribution of AOA and AOB in the media-attached biofilm. Subsequent correlations of functional gene abundance data with key water quality parameters suggested an important functional role for media-attached AOB in particular for IFAS reactor nitrification performance and indicate possible functional redundancy in some IFAS ammonia oxidiser communities. Results from this investigation demonstrate the capacity of the FGA to resolve subtle ecological shifts in key microbial communities in nitrifying activated sludge and indicate its value as a tool for better understanding the linkages between the ecology and performance of these engineered systems.

  17. Differential Retention of Gene Functions in a Secondary Metabolite Cluster.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, Hannah T; Slot, Jason C; Divon, Hege H; Lysøe, Erik; Proctor, Robert H; Brown, Daren W

    2017-08-01

    In fungi, distribution of secondary metabolite (SM) gene clusters is often associated with host- or environment-specific benefits provided by SMs. In the plant pathogen Alternaria brassicicola (Dothideomycetes), the DEP cluster confers an ability to synthesize the SM depudecin, a histone deacetylase inhibitor that contributes weakly to virulence. The DEP cluster includes genes encoding enzymes, a transporter, and a transcription regulator. We investigated the distribution and evolution of the DEP cluster in 585 fungal genomes and found a wide but sporadic distribution among Dothideomycetes, Sordariomycetes, and Eurotiomycetes. We confirmed DEP gene expression and depudecin production in one fungus, Fusarium langsethiae. Phylogenetic analyses suggested 6-10 horizontal gene transfers (HGTs) of the cluster, including a transfer that led to the presence of closely related cluster homologs in Alternaria and Fusarium. The analyses also indicated that HGTs were frequently followed by loss/pseudogenization of one or more DEP genes. Independent cluster inactivation was inferred in at least four fungal classes. Analyses of transitions among functional, pseudogenized, and absent states of DEP genes among Fusarium species suggest enzyme-encoding genes are lost at higher rates than the transporter (DEP3) and regulatory (DEP6) genes. The phenotype of an experimentally-induced DEP3 mutant of Fusarium did not support the hypothesis that selective retention of DEP3 and DEP6 protects fungi from exogenous depudecin. Together, the results suggest that HGT and gene loss have contributed significantly to DEP cluster distribution, and that some DEP genes provide a greater fitness benefit possibly due to a differential tendency to form network connections. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution 2017. This work is written by US Government employees and is in the public domain in the US.

  18. Using riboswitches to regulate gene expression and define gene function in mycobacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Vlack, Erik R; Seeliger, Jessica C

    2015-01-01

    Mycobacteria include both environmental species and many pathogenic species such as Mycobacterium tuberculosis, an intracellular pathogen that is the causative agent of tuberculosis in humans. Inducible gene expression is a powerful tool for examining gene function and essentiality, both in in vitro culture and in host cell infections. The theophylline-inducible artificial riboswitch has recently emerged as an alternative to protein repressor-based systems. The riboswitch is translationally regulated and is combined with a mycobacterial promoter that provides transcriptional control. We here provide methods used by our laboratory to characterize the riboswitch response to theophylline in reporter strains, recombinant organisms containing riboswitch-regulated endogenous genes, and in host cell infections. These protocols should facilitate the application of both existing and novel artificial riboswitches to the exploration of gene function in mycobacteria. © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Functional analysis helps importance of unclassified mismatch repair genes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ou, Jianghua; Niessen, Renee C.; L tzen, Anne; Sijmons, Rolf H.; Kleibeuker, Jan. H.; De Wind, Niels; Rasmussen, Lene Juel; Hofstra, Robert M. W.

    2007-01-01

    Hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer (HNPCC) or Lynch syndrome is caused by DNA variations in the DNA mismatch repair (MMR) genes MSH2, MLH1, MSH6, and PMS2. Many of the mutations identified result in premature termination of translation and thus in loss-of-function of the encoded mutated

  20. ( Euphausia superba ) transcriptome to identify function genes and ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    MA

    database, Superba SE, was described by Hunt et al (2017) and KrillDB was developed (Sales et al., 2017) for purpose of free accession to annotation information for users. However, the availability of molecular data concerning function genes, microsatellites, and single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in E. superba is still ...

  1. Analysis of gene functions in Maize chlorotic mottle virus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheets, Kay

    2016-08-15

    Gene functions of strains of Maize chlorotic mottle virus, which comprises the monotypic genus Machlomovirus, have not been previously identified. In this study mutagenesis of the seven genes encoded in maize chlorotic mottle virus (MCMV) showed that the genes with positional and sequence similarity to their homologs in viruses of related tombusvirid genera had similar functions. p50 and its readthrough protein p111 are the only proteins required for replication in maize protoplasts, and they function at a low level in trans. Two movement proteins, p7a and p7b, and coat protein, encoded on subgenomic RNA1, are required for cell-to-cell movement in maize, and p7a and p7b function in trans. A unique protein, p31, expressed as a readthrough extension of p7a, is required for efficient systemic infection. The 5' proximal MCMV gene encodes a unique 32kDa protein that is not required for replication or movement. Transcripts lacking p32 expression accumulate to about 1/3 the level of wild type transcripts in protoplasts and produce delayed, mild infections in maize plants. Additional studies on p32, p31 and the unique amino-terminal region of p50 are needed to further characterize the life cycle of this unique tombusvirid. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Gene Discovery and Functional Analyses in the Model Plant Arabidopsis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Feng, Cai-ping; Mundy, J.

    2006-01-01

    The present mini-review describes newer methods and strategies, including transposon and T-DNA insertions, TILLING, Deleteagene, and RNA interference, to functionally analyze genes of interest in the model plant Arabidopsis. The relative advantages and disadvantages of the systems are also...

  3. Prediction of human protein function according to Gene Ontology categories

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Lars Juhl; Gupta, Ramneek; Stærfeldt, Hans Henrik

    2003-01-01

    developed a method for prediction of protein function for a subset of classes from the Gene Ontology classification scheme. This subset includes several pharmaceutically interesting categories-transcription factors, receptors, ion channels, stress and immune response proteins, hormones and growth factors...

  4. ( Euphausia superba ) transcriptome to identify function genes and ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    MA

    Further analysis produced 106,250 unigenes, of which. 31,683 were annotated based on protein homology searches against protein databases. Gene. Ontology (GO) analysis showed that Ion binding, organic substance metabolic process, and cell part were the most abundant terms in molecular function, biological process ...

  5. Gene-environment interaction and male reproductive function

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Axelsson, Jonatan; Bonde, Jens Peter; Giwercman, Yvonne L

    2010-01-01

    that specific genotypes may confer a larger risk of male reproductive disorders following certain exposures. This paper presents a critical review of animal and human evidence on how genes may modify environmental effects on male reproductive function. Some examples have been found that support this mechanism...

  6. Bone marrow transplantations to study gene function in hematopoietic cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Winther, Menno P. J.; Heeringa, Peter

    2011-01-01

    Immune cells are derived from hematopoietic stem cells in the bone marrow. Experimental replacement of bone marrow offers the unique possibility to replace immune cells, to study gene function in mouse models of disease. Over the past decades, this technique has been used extensively to study, for

  7. Students' Understanding of the Function-Derivative Relationship When Learning Economic Concepts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ariza, Angel; Llinares, Salvador; Valls, Julia

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study is to characterise students' understanding of the function-derivative relationship when learning economic concepts. To this end, we use a fuzzy metric (Chang 1968) to identify the development of economic concept understanding that is defined by the function-derivative relationship. The results indicate that the understanding…

  8. Phylogenomic detection and functional prediction of genes potentially important for plant meiosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Luoyan; Kong, Hongzhi; Ma, Hong; Yang, Ji

    2018-02-15

    Meiosis is a specialized type of cell division necessary for sexual reproduction in eukaryotes. A better understanding of the cytological procedures of meiosis has been achieved by comprehensive cytogenetic studies in plants, while the genetic mechanisms regulating meiotic progression remain incompletely understood. The increasing accumulation of complete genome sequences and large-scale gene expression datasets has provided a powerful resource for phylogenomic inference and unsupervised identification of genes involved in plant meiosis. By integrating sequence homology and expression data, 164, 131, 124 and 162 genes potentially important for meiosis were identified in the genomes of Arabidopsis thaliana, Oryza sativa, Selaginella moellendorffii and Pogonatum aloides, respectively. The predicted genes were assigned to 45 meiotic GO terms, and their functions were related to different processes occurring during meiosis in various organisms. Most of the predicted meiotic genes underwent lineage-specific duplication events during plant evolution, with about 30% of the predicted genes retaining only a single copy in higher plant genomes. The results of this study provided clues to design experiments for better functional characterization of meiotic genes in plants, promoting the phylogenomic approach to the evolutionary dynamics of the plant meiotic machineries. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Functional Associations by Response Overlap (FARO), a functional genomics approach matching gene expression phenotypes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Henrik Bjørn; Mundy, J.; Willenbrock, Hanni

    2007-01-01

    for deriving 'Functional Association(s) by Response Overlap' (FARO) between microarray gene expression studies. The transcriptional response is defined by the set of differentially expressed genes independent from the magnitude or direction of the change. This approach overcomes the limited comparability...... to confirm and further delineate the functions of Arabidopsis MAP kinase 4 in disease and stress responses. Furthermore, we find that a large, well-defined set of genes responds in opposing directions to different stress conditions and predict the effects of different stress combinations. This demonstrates...

  10. Elucidating gene function and function evolution through comparison of co-expression networks in plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marek eMutwil

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The analysis of gene expression data has shown that transcriptionally coordinated (co-expressed genes are often functionally related, enabling scientists to use expression data in gene function prediction. This Focused Review discusses our original paper (Large-scale co-expression approach to dissect secondary cell wall formation across plant species, Frontiers in Plant Science 2:23. In this paper we applied cross-species analysis to co-expression networks of genes involved in cellulose biosynthesis. We show that the co-expression networks from different species are highly similar, indicating that whole biological pathways are conserved across species. This finding has two important implications. First, the analysis can transfer gene function annotation from well-studied plants, such as Arabidopsis, to other, uncharacterized plant species. As the analysis finds genes that have similar sequence and similar expression pattern across different organisms, functionally equivalent genes can be identified. Second, since co-expression analyses are often noisy, a comparative analysis should have higher performance, as parts of co-expression networks that are conserved are more likely to be functionally relevant. In this Focused Review, we outline the comparative analysis done in the original paper and comment on the recent advances and approaches that allow comparative analyses of co-function networks. We hypothesize that, in comparison to simple co-expression analysis, comparative analysis would yield more accurate gene function predictions. Finally, by combining comparative analysis with genomic information of green plants, we propose a possible composition of cellulose biosynthesis machinery during earlier stages of plant evolution.

  11. Functional evaluations of genes disrupted in patients with Tourette’s Disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nawei eSun

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Tourette Disorder (TD is a highly heritable neurodevelopmental disorder with complex genetic architecture and unclear neuropathology. Disruptions of particular genes have been identified in subsets of TD patients. However, none of the findings has been replicated, probably due to the complex and heterogeneous genetic architecture of TD that involves both common and rare variants. To understand the etiology of TD, functional analyses are required to characterize the molecular and cellular consequences caused by mutations in candidate genes. Such molecular and cellular alterations may converge into common biological pathways underlying the heterogeneous genetic etiology of TD patients. Herein, we review specific genes implicated in TD etiology, discuss the functions of these genes in the mammalian central nervous system and the corresponding behavioral anomalies exhibited in animal models and, importantly, review functional analyses that can be performed to evaluate the role(s that the genetic disruptions might play in TD. Specifically, the functional assays include novel cell culture systems, genome editing techniques, bioinformatics approaches, transcriptomic analyses and genetically modified animal models applied or developed to study genes associated with TD or with other neurodevelopmental and neuropsychiatric disorders. By describing methods used to study diseases with genetic architecture similar to TD, we hope to develop a systematic framework for investigating the etiology of TD and related disorders.

  12. The FUN of identifying gene function in bacterial pathogens; insights from Salmonella functional genomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammarlöf, Disa L; Canals, Rocío; Hinton, Jay C D

    2013-10-01

    The availability of thousands of genome sequences of bacterial pathogens poses a particular challenge because each genome contains hundreds of genes of unknown function (FUN). How can we easily discover which FUN genes encode important virulence factors? One solution is to combine two different functional genomic approaches. First, transcriptomics identifies bacterial FUN genes that show differential expression during the process of mammalian infection. Second, global mutagenesis identifies individual FUN genes that the pathogen requires to cause disease. The intersection of these datasets can reveal a small set of candidate genes most likely to encode novel virulence attributes. We demonstrate this approach with the Salmonella infection model, and propose that a similar strategy could be used for other bacterial pathogens. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Experimental and Modeling Approaches for Understanding the Effect of Gene Expression Noise in Biological Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David M. Holloway

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Biological development involves numerous chemical and physical processes which must act in concert to reliably produce a cell, a tissue, or a body. To be successful, the developing organism must be robust to variability at many levels, such as the environment (e.g., temperature, moisture, upstream information (such as long-range positional information gradients, or intrinsic noise due to the stochastic nature of low concentration chemical kinetics. The latter is especially relevant to the regulation of gene expression in cell differentiation. The temporal stochasticity of gene expression has been studied in single celled organisms for nearly two decades, but only recently have techniques become available to gather temporally-resolved data across spatially-distributed gene expression patterns in developing multicellular organisms. These demonstrate temporal noisy “bursting” in the number of gene transcripts per cell, raising the question of how the transcript number defining a particular cell type is produced, such that one cell type can reliably be distinguished from a neighboring cell of different type along a tissue boundary. Stochastic spatio-temporal modeling of tissue-wide expression patterns can identify signatures for specific types of gene regulation, which can be used to extract regulatory mechanism information from experimental time series. This Perspective focuses on using this type of approach to study gene expression noise during the anterior-posterior segmentation of the fruit fly embryo. Advances in experimental and theoretical techniques will lead to an increasing quantification of expression noise that can be used to understand how regulatory mechanisms contribute to embryonic robustness across a range of developmental processes.

  14. Comparative genomics and functional study of lipid metabolic genes in Caenorhabditis elegans

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background Animal models are indispensable to understand the lipid metabolism and lipid metabolic diseases. Over the last decade, the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has become a popular animal model for exploring the regulation of lipid metabolism, obesity, and obese-related diseases. However, the genomic and functional conservation of lipid metabolism from C. elegans to humans remains unknown. In the present study, we systematically analyzed genes involved in lipid metabolism in the C. elegans genome using comparative genomics. Results We built a database containing 471 lipid genes from the C. elegans genome, and then assigned most of lipid genes into 16 different lipid metabolic pathways that were integrated into a network. Over 70% of C. elegans lipid genes have human orthologs, with 237 of 471 C. elegans lipid genes being conserved in humans, mice, rats, and Drosophila, of which 71 genes are specifically related to human metabolic diseases. Moreover, RNA-mediated interference (RNAi) was used to disrupt the expression of 356 of 471 lipid genes with available RNAi clones. We found that 21 genes strongly affect fat storage, development, reproduction, and other visible phenotypes, 6 of which have not previously been implicated in the regulation of fat metabolism and other phenotypes. Conclusions This study provides the first systematic genomic insight into lipid metabolism in C. elegans, supporting the use of C. elegans as an increasingly prominent model in the study of metabolic diseases. PMID:23496871

  15. Plant responses to environmental stress: regulation and functions of the Arabidopsis TCH genes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braam, J.; Sistrunk, M. L.; Polisensky, D. H.; Xu, W.; Purugganan, M. M.; Antosiewicz, D. M.; Campbell, P.; Johnson, K. A.; McIntire, L. V. (Principal Investigator)

    1997-01-01

    Expression of the Arabidopsis TCH genes is markedly upregulated in response to a variety of environmental stimuli including the seemingly innocuous stimulus of touch. Understanding the mechanism(s) and factors that control TCH gene regulation will shed light on the signaling pathways that enable plants to respond to environmental conditions. The TCH proteins include calmodulin, calmodulin-related proteins and a xyloglucan endotransglycosylase. Expression analyses and localization of protein accumulation indicates that the potential sites of TCH protein function include expanding cells and tissues under mechanical strain. We hypothesize that at least a subset of the TCH proteins may collaborate in cell wall biogenesis.

  16. A Functional Approach towards Understanding the Role of the Mitochondrial Respiratory Chain in an Endomycorrhizal Symbiosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercy, Louis; Lucic-Mercy, Eva; Nogales, Amaia; Poghosyan, Areg; Schneider, Carolin; Arnholdt-Schmitt, Birgit

    2017-01-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) are crucial components of fertile soils, able to provide several ecosystem services for crop production. Current economic, social and legislative contexts should drive the so-called “second green revolution” by better exploiting these beneficial microorganisms. Many challenges still need to be overcome to better understand the mycorrhizal symbiosis, among which (i) the biotrophic nature of AMF, constraining their production, while (ii) phosphate acts as a limiting factor for the optimal mycorrhizal inoculum application and effectiveness. Organism fitness and adaptation to the changing environment can be driven by the modulation of mitochondrial respiratory chain, strongly connected to the phosphorus processing. Nevertheless, the role of the respiratory function in mycorrhiza remains largely unexplored. We hypothesized that the two mitochondrial respiratory chain components, alternative oxidase (AOX) and cytochrome oxidase (COX), are involved in specific mycorrhizal behavior. For this, a complex approach was developed. At the pre-symbiotic phase (axenic conditions), we studied phenotypic responses of Rhizoglomus irregulare spores with two AOX and COX inhibitors [respectively, salicylhydroxamic acid (SHAM) and potassium cyanide (KCN)] and two growth regulators (abscisic acid – ABA and gibberellic acid – Ga3). At the symbiotic phase, we analyzed phenotypic and transcriptomic (genes involved in respiration, transport, and fermentation) responses in Solanum tuberosum/Rhizoglomus irregulare biosystem (glasshouse conditions): we monitored the effects driven by ABA, and explored the modulations induced by SHAM and KCN under five phosphorus concentrations. KCN and SHAM inhibited in vitro spore germination while ABA and Ga3 induced differential spore germination and hyphal patterns. ABA promoted mycorrhizal colonization, strong arbuscule intensity and positive mycorrhizal growth dependency (MGD). In ABA treated plants, R. irregulare

  17. Drosha regulates gene expression independently of RNA cleavage function

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gromak, Natalia; Dienstbier, Martin; Macias, Sara

    2013-01-01

    Drosha is the main RNase III-like enzyme involved in the process of microRNA (miRNA) biogenesis in the nucleus. Using whole-genome ChIP-on-chip analysis, we demonstrate that, in addition to miRNA sequences, Drosha specifically binds promoter-proximal regions of many human genes in a transcription......-terminal protein-interaction domain, which associates with the RNA-binding protein CBP80 and RNA Polymerase II. Consequently, we uncover a previously unsuspected RNA cleavage-independent function of Drosha in the regulation of human gene expression....

  18. Family expansion and gene rearrangements contributed to the functional specialization of PRDM genes in vertebrates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alcalay Myriam

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Progressive diversification of paralogs after gene expansion is essential to increase their functional specialization. However, mode and tempo of this divergence remain mostly unclear. Here we report the comparative analysis of PRDM genes, a family of putative transcriptional regulators involved in human tumorigenesis. Results Our analysis assessed that the PRDM genes originated in metazoans, expanded in vertebrates and further duplicated in primates. We experimentally showed that fast-evolving paralogs are poorly expressed, and that the most recent duplicates, such as primate-specific PRDM7, acquire tissue-specificity. PRDM7 underwent major structural rearrangements that decreased the number of encoded Zn-Fingers and modified gene splicing. Through internal duplication and activation of a non-canonical splice site (GC-AG, PRDM7 can acquire a novel intron. We also detected an alternative isoform that can retain the intron in the mature transcript and that is predominantly expressed in human melanocytes. Conclusion Our findings show that (a molecular evolution of paralogs correlates with their expression pattern; (b gene diversification is obtained through massive genomic rearrangements; and (c splicing modification contributes to the functional specialization of novel genes.

  19. Functional analysis of prognostic gene expression network genes in metastatic breast cancer models.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas R Geiger

    Full Text Available Identification of conserved co-expression networks is a useful tool for clustering groups of genes enriched for common molecular or cellular functions [1]. The relative importance of genes within networks can frequently be inferred by the degree of connectivity, with those displaying high connectivity being significantly more likely to be associated with specific molecular functions [2]. Previously we utilized cross-species network analysis to identify two network modules that were significantly associated with distant metastasis free survival in breast cancer. Here, we validate one of the highly connected genes as a metastasis associated gene. Tpx2, the most highly connected gene within a proliferation network specifically prognostic for estrogen receptor positive (ER+ breast cancers, enhances metastatic disease, but in a tumor autonomous, proliferation-independent manner. Histologic analysis suggests instead that variation of TPX2 levels within disseminated tumor cells may influence the transition between dormant to actively proliferating cells in the secondary site. These results support the co-expression network approach for identification of new metastasis-associated genes to provide new information regarding the etiology of breast cancer progression and metastatic disease.

  20. IGF-I Gene Therapy in Aging Rats Modulates Hippocampal Genes Relevant to Memory Function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pardo, Joaquín; Abba, Martin C; Lacunza, Ezequiel; Ogundele, Olalekan M; Paiva, Isabel; Morel, Gustavo R; Outeiro, Tiago F; Goya, Rodolfo G

    2018-03-14

    In rats, learning and memory performance decline during normal aging, which makes this rodent species a suitable model to evaluate therapeutic strategies. In aging rats, insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I), is known to significantly improve spatial memory accuracy as compared to control counterparts. A constellation of gene expression changes underlie the hippocampal phenotype of aging but no studies on the effects of IGF-I on the hippocampal transcriptome of old rodents have been documented. Here, we assessed the effects of IGF-I gene therapy on spatial memory performance in old female rats and compared them with changes in the hippocampal transcriptome. In the Barnes maze test, experimental rats showed a significantly higher exploratory frequency of the goal hole than controls. Hippocampal RNA-sequencing showed that 219 genes are differentially expressed in 28-month-old rats intracerebroventricularly injected with an adenovector expressing rat IGF-I as compared with placebo adenovector-injected counterparts. From the differentially expressed genes, 81 were down and 138 upregulated. From those genes, a list of functionally relevant genes, concerning hippocampal IGF-I expression, synaptic plasticity as well as neuronal function was identified. Our results provide an initial glimpse at the molecular mechanisms underlying the neuroprotective actions of IGF-I in the aging brain.

  1. Developing Essential Understanding of Functions for Teaching Mathematics in Grades 9-12

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lloyd, Gwendolyn; Beckmann, Sybilla; Zbiek, Rose Mary; Cooney, Thomas

    2010-01-01

    Are sequences functions? What can't the popular "vertical line test" be applied in some cases to determine if a relation is a function? How does the idea of rate of change connect with simpler ideas about proportionality as well as more advanced topics in calculus? Helping high school students develop a robust understanding of functions requires…

  2. Gene-specific function prediction for non-synonymous mutations in monogenic diabetes genes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Quan Li

    Full Text Available The rapid progress of genomic technologies has been providing new opportunities to address the need of maturity-onset diabetes of the young (MODY molecular diagnosis. However, whether a new mutation causes MODY can be questionable. A number of in silico methods have been developed to predict functional effects of rare human mutations. The purpose of this study is to compare the performance of different bioinformatics methods in the functional prediction of nonsynonymous mutations in each MODY gene, and provides reference matrices to assist the molecular diagnosis of MODY. Our study showed that the prediction scores by different methods of the diabetes mutations were highly correlated, but were more complimentary than replacement to each other. The available in silico methods for the prediction of diabetes mutations had varied performances across different genes. Applying gene-specific thresholds defined by this study may be able to increase the performance of in silico prediction of disease-causing mutations.

  3. Gene therapy rescues cone function in congenital achromatopsia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Komáromy, András M; Alexander, John J; Rowlan, Jessica S; Garcia, Monique M; Chiodo, Vince A; Kaya, Asli; Tanaka, Jacqueline C; Acland, Gregory M; Hauswirth, William W; Aguirre, Gustavo D

    2010-07-01

    The successful restoration of visual function with recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV)-mediated gene replacement therapy in animals and humans with an inherited disease of the retinal pigment epithelium has ushered in a new era of retinal therapeutics. For many retinal disorders, however, targeting of therapeutic vectors to mutant rods and/or cones will be required. In this study, the primary cone photoreceptor disorder achromatopsia served as the ideal translational model to develop gene therapy directed to cone photoreceptors. We demonstrate that rAAV-mediated gene replacement therapy with different forms of the human red cone opsin promoter led to the restoration of cone function and day vision in two canine models of CNGB3 achromatopsia, a neuronal channelopathy that is the most common form of achromatopsia in man. The robustness and stability of the observed treatment effect was mutation independent, but promoter and age dependent. Subretinal administration of rAAV5-hCNGB3 with a long version of the red cone opsin promoter in younger animals led to a stable therapeutic effect for at least 33 months. Our results hold promise for future clinical trials of cone-directed gene therapy in achromatopsia and other cone-specific disorders.

  4. Understanding the Pathogenicity of Noncoding Mismatch Repair Gene Promoter Variants in Lynch Syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Qing; Thompson, Bryony A; Ward, Robyn L; Hesson, Luke B; Sloane, Mathew A

    2016-05-01

    Lynch syndrome is the most common familial cancer condition that mainly predisposes to tumors of the colon and endometrium. Cancer susceptibility is caused by the autosomal dominant inheritance of a loss-of-function mutation or epimutation in one of the DNA mismatch repair (MMR) genes. Cancer risk assessment is often possible with nonsynonymous coding region mutations, but in many cases patients present with DNA sequence changes within noncoding regions, including the promoters, of MMR genes. The pathogenic role of promoter variants, and hence clinical significance, is unclear and this hinders the clinical management of carriers. In this review, we provide an overview of the classification of MMR gene variants, outline the laboratory assays and online resources that can be used to assess the causality of promoter variants in Lynch syndrome, and highlight some of the practical challenges of demonstrating the pathogenicity of these variants. In conclusion, we propose a guide that could be integrated into the current InSiGHT classification scheme to help determine if a MMR gene promoter variant is pathogenic. © 2016 WILEY PERIODICALS, INC.

  5. Expanded functional diversity of shaker K(+ channels in cnidarians is driven by gene expansion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Timothy Jegla

    Full Text Available The genome of the cnidarian Nematostella vectensis (starlet sea anemone provides a molecular genetic view into the first nervous systems, which appeared in a late common ancestor of cnidarians and bilaterians. Nematostella has a surprisingly large and diverse set of neuronal signaling genes including paralogs of most neuronal signaling molecules found in higher metazoans. Several ion channel gene families are highly expanded in the sea anemone, including three subfamilies of the Shaker K(+ channel gene family: Shaker (Kv1, Shaw (Kv3 and Shal (Kv4. In order to better understand the physiological significance of these voltage-gated K(+ channel expansions, we analyzed the function of 18 members of the 20 gene Shaker subfamily in Nematostella. Six of the Nematostella Shaker genes express functional homotetrameric K(+ channels in vitro. These include functional orthologs of bilaterian Shakers and channels with an unusually high threshold for voltage activation. We identified 11 Nematostella Shaker genes with a distinct "silent" or "regulatory" phenotype; these encode subunits that function only in heteromeric channels and serve to further diversify Nematostella Shaker channel gating properties. Subunits with the regulatory phenotype have not previously been found in the Shaker subfamily, but have evolved independently in the Shab (Kv2 family in vertebrates and the Shal family in a cnidarian. Phylogenetic analysis indicates that regulatory subunits were present in ancestral cnidarians, but have continued to diversity at a high rate after the split between anthozoans and hydrozoans. Comparison of Shaker family gene complements from diverse metazoan species reveals frequent, large scale duplication has produced highly unique sets of Shaker channels in the major metazoan lineages.

  6. Sponge Microbiota are a Reservoir of Functional Antibiotic Resistance Genes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Versluis, Dennis; de Evgrafov, Mari Cristina Rodriguez; Sommer, Morten Otto Alexander

    2016-01-01

    Wide application of antibiotics has contributed to the evolution of multi-drug resistant human pathogens, resulting in poorer treatment outcomes for infections. In the marine environment, seawater samples have been investigated as a resistance reservoir; however, no studies have methodically...... examined sponges as a reservoir of antibiotic resistance. Sponges could be important in this respect because they often contain diverse microbial communities that have the capacity to produce bioactive metabolites. Here, we applied functional metagenomics to study the presence and diversity of functional......). Fifteen of 37 inserts harbored resistance genes that shared resistance gene could be identified with high confidence, in which case we predicted resistance to be mainly mediated by antibiotic efflux. One marine-specific ampicillin-resistance...

  7. Jatropha curcas, a biofuel crop: functional genomics for understanding metabolic pathways and genetic improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maghuly, Fatemeh; Laimer, Margit

    2013-10-01

    Jatropha curcas is currently attracting much attention as an oilseed crop for biofuel, as Jatropha can grow under climate and soil conditions that are unsuitable for food production. However, little is known about Jatropha, and there are a number of challenges to be overcome. In fact, Jatropha has not really been domesticated; most of the Jatropha accessions are toxic, which renders the seedcake unsuitable for use as animal feed. The seeds of Jatropha contain high levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids, which negatively impact the biofuel quality. Fruiting of Jatropha is fairly continuous, thus increasing costs of harvesting. Therefore, before starting any improvement program using conventional or molecular breeding techniques, understanding gene function and the genome scale of Jatropha are prerequisites. This review presents currently available and relevant information on the latest technologies (genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics) to decipher important metabolic pathways within Jatropha, such as oil and toxin synthesis. Further, it discusses future directions for biotechnological approaches in Jatropha breeding and improvement. © 2013 The Authors. Biotechnology Journal published by Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  8. Functional consequences of integrin gene mutations in mice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bouvard, D; Brakebusch, C; Gustafsson, E

    2001-01-01

    Integrins are cell-surface receptors responsible for cell attachment to extracellular matrices and to other cells. The application of mouse genetics has significantly increased our understanding of integrin function in vivo. In this review, we summarize the phenotypes of mice carrying mutant inte...

  9. Turning gene function ON and OFF using sense and antisense photo-morpholinos in zebrafish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tallafuss, Alexandra; Gibson, Dan; Morcos, Paul; Li, Yongfu; Seredick, Steve; Eisen, Judith; Washbourne, Philip

    2012-01-01

    To understand the molecular mechanisms of development it is essential to be able to turn genes on and off at will and in a spatially restricted fashion. Morpholino oligonucleotides (MOs) are very common tools used in several model organisms with which it is possible to block gene expression. Recently developed photo-activated MOs allow control over the onset of MO activity. However, deactivation of photo-cleavable MO activity has remained elusive. Here, we describe photo-cleavable MOs with which it is possible to activate or de-activate MO function by UV exposure in a temporal and spatial manner. We show, using several different genes as examples, that it is possible to turn gene expression on or off both in the entire zebrafish embryo and in single cells. We use these tools to demonstrate the sufficiency of no tail expression as late as tailbud stage to drive medial precursor cells towards the notochord cell fate. As a broader approach for the use of photo-cleavable MOs, we show temporal control over gal4 function, which has many potential applications in multiple transgenic lines. We demonstrate temporal manipulation of Gal4 transgene expression in only primary motoneurons and not secondary motoneurons, heretofore impossible with conventional transgenic approaches. In another example, we follow and analyze neural crest cells that regained sox10 function after deactivation of a photo-cleavable sox10-MO at different time points. Our results suggest that sox10 function might not be critical during neural crest formation. PMID:22492359

  10. Turning gene function ON and OFF using sense and antisense photo-morpholinos in zebrafish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tallafuss, Alexandra; Gibson, Dan; Morcos, Paul; Li, Yongfu; Seredick, Steve; Eisen, Judith; Washbourne, Philip

    2012-05-01

    To understand the molecular mechanisms of development it is essential to be able to turn genes on and off at will and in a spatially restricted fashion. Morpholino oligonucleotides (MOs) are very common tools used in several model organisms with which it is possible to block gene expression. Recently developed photo-activated MOs allow control over the onset of MO activity. However, deactivation of photo-cleavable MO activity has remained elusive. Here, we describe photo-cleavable MOs with which it is possible to activate or de-activate MO function by UV exposure in a temporal and spatial manner. We show, using several different genes as examples, that it is possible to turn gene expression on or off both in the entire zebrafish embryo and in single cells. We use these tools to demonstrate the sufficiency of no tail expression as late as tailbud stage to drive medial precursor cells towards the notochord cell fate. As a broader approach for the use of photo-cleavable MOs, we show temporal control over gal4 function, which has many potential applications in multiple transgenic lines. We demonstrate temporal manipulation of Gal4 transgene expression in only primary motoneurons and not secondary motoneurons, heretofore impossible with conventional transgenic approaches. In another example, we follow and analyze neural crest cells that regained sox10 function after deactivation of a photo-cleavable sox10-MO at different time points. Our results suggest that sox10 function might not be critical during neural crest formation.

  11. Discovery and functional assessment of gene variants in the vascular endothelial growth factor pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paré-Brunet, Laia; Glubb, Dylan; Evans, Patrick; Berenguer-Llergo, Antoni; Etheridge, Amy S; Skol, Andrew D; Di Rienzo, Anna; Duan, Shiwei; Gamazon, Eric R; Innocenti, Federico

    2014-02-01

    Angiogenesis is a host-mediated mechanism in disease pathophysiology. The vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) pathway is a major determinant of angiogenesis, and a comprehensive annotation of the functional variation in this pathway is essential to understand the genetic basis of angiogenesis-related diseases. We assessed the allelic heterogeneity of gene expression, population specificity of cis expression quantitative trait loci (eQTLs), and eQTL function in luciferase assays in CEU and Yoruba people of Ibadan, Nigeria (YRI) HapMap lymphoblastoid cell lines in 23 resequenced genes. Among 356 cis-eQTLs, 155 and 174 were unique to CEU and YRI, respectively, and 27 were shared between CEU and YRI. Two cis-eQTLs provided mechanistic evidence for two genome-wide association study findings. Five eQTLs were tested for function in luciferase assays and the effect of two KRAS variants was concordant with the eQTL effect. Two eQTLs found in each of PRKCE, PIK3C2A, and MAP2K6 could predict 44%, 37%, and 45% of the variance in gene expression, respectively. This is the first analysis focusing on the pattern of functional genetic variation of the VEGF pathway genes in CEU and YRI populations and providing mechanistic evidence for genetic association studies of diseases for which angiogenesis plays a pathophysiologic role. © 2013 WILEY PERIODICALS, INC.

  12. Functional screening of antibiotic resistance genes from human gut microbiota reveals a novel gene fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Gong; Hu, Yongfei; Yin, Yeshi; Yang, Xi; Xiang, Chunsheng; Wang, Baohong; Chen, Yanfei; Yang, Fengling; Lei, Fang; Wu, Na; Lu, Na; Li, Jing; Chen, Quanze; Li, Lanjuan; Zhu, Baoli

    2012-11-01

    The human gut microbiota has a high density of bacteria that are considered a reservoir for antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs). In this study, one fosmid metagenomic library generated from the gut microbiota of four healthy humans was used to screen for ARGs against seven antibiotics. Eight new ARGs were obtained: one against amoxicillin, six against d-cycloserine, and one against kanamycin. The new amoxicillin resistance gene encodes a protein with 53% identity to a class D β-lactamase from Riemerella anatipestifer RA-GD. The six new d-cycloserine resistance genes encode proteins with 73-81% identity to known d-alanine-d-alanine ligases. The new kanamycin resistance gene encodes a protein of 274 amino acids with an N-terminus (amino acids 1-189) that has 42% identity to the 6'-aminoglycoside acetyltransferase [AAC(6')] from Enterococcus hirae and a C-terminus (amino acids 190-274) with 35% identity to a hypothetical protein from Clostridiales sp. SSC/2. A functional study on the novel kanamycin resistance gene showed that only the N-terminus conferred kanamycin resistance. Our results showed that functional metagenomics is a useful tool for the identification of new ARGs. © 2012 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by Blackwell Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Application of community phylogenetic approaches to understand gene expression: differential exploration of venom gene space in predatory marine gastropods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Dan; Duda, Thomas F

    2014-06-05

    Predatory marine gastropods of the genus Conus exhibit substantial variation in venom composition both within and among species. Apart from mechanisms associated with extensive turnover of gene families and rapid evolution of genes that encode venom components ('conotoxins'), the evolution of distinct conotoxin expression patterns is an additional source of variation that may drive interspecific differences in the utilization of species' 'venom gene space'. To determine the evolution of expression patterns of venom genes of Conus species, we evaluated the expression of A-superfamily conotoxin genes of a set of closely related Conus species by comparing recovered transcripts of A-superfamily genes that were previously identified from the genomes of these species. We modified community phylogenetics approaches to incorporate phylogenetic history and disparity of genes and their expression profiles to determine patterns of venom gene space utilization. Less than half of the A-superfamily gene repertoire of these species is expressed, and only a few orthologous genes are coexpressed among species. Species exhibit substantially distinct expression strategies, with some expressing sets of closely related loci ('under-dispersed' expression of available genes) while others express sets of more disparate genes ('over-dispersed' expression). In addition, expressed genes show higher dN/dS values than either unexpressed or ancestral genes; this implies that expression exposes genes to selection and facilitates rapid evolution of these genes. Few recent lineage-specific gene duplicates are expressed simultaneously, suggesting that expression divergence among redundant gene copies may be established shortly after gene duplication. Our study demonstrates that venom gene space is explored differentially by Conus species, a process that effectively permits the independent and rapid evolution of venoms in these species.

  14. Cloning and functional characterization of carotenoid cleavage dioxygenase 4 genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Fong-Chin; Molnár, Péter; Schwab, Wilfried

    2009-01-01

    Although a number of plant carotenoid cleavage dioxygenase (CCD) genes have been functionally characterized in different plant species, little is known about the biochemical role and enzymatic activities of members of the subclass 4 (CCD4). To gain insight into their biological function, CCD4 genes were isolated from apple (Malus x domestica, MdCCD4), chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum x morifolium, CmCCD4a), rose (Rosa x damascena, RdCCD4), and osmanthus (Osmanthus fragrans, OfCCD4), and were expressed, together with AtCCD4, in Escherichia coli. In vivo assays showed that CmCCD4a and MdCCD4 cleaved beta-carotene well to yield beta-ionone, while OfCCD4, RdCCD4, and AtCCD4 were almost inactive towards this substrate. No cleavage products were found for any of the five CCD4 genes when they were co-expressed in E. coli strains that accumulated cis-zeta-carotene and lycopene. In vitro assays, however, demonstrated the breakdown of 8'-apo-beta-caroten-8'-al by AtCCD4 and RdCCD4 to beta-ionone, while this apocarotenal was almost not degraded by OfCCD4, CmCCD4a, and MdCCD4. Sequence analysis of genomic clones of CCD4 genes revealed that RdCCD4, like AtCCD4, contains no intron, while MdCCD, OfCCD4, and CmCCD4a contain introns. These results indicate that plants produce at least two different forms of CCD4 proteins. Although CCD4 enzymes cleave their substrates at the same position (9,10 and 9',10'), they might have different biochemical functions as they accept different (apo)-carotenoid substrates, show various expression patterns, and are genomically differently organized.

  15. Analysis of breast cancer metastasis candidate genes from next generation-sequencing via systematic functional genomics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Blomstrøm, Monica Marie

    2016-01-01

    Metastatic breast cancer remains an incurable disease accounting for the vast majority of deaths from breast cancer. Understanding the molecular mechanisms for metastatic spread is important to improve diagnosis and for generating starting points for novel treatment strategies. Inhibition...... advantage of mutations is that they are most likely stable in the metastatic cancer cell population, whereas miRNA, mRNA and protein expression profiles may change substantially prior to, throughout, or after the complex metastatic process as well as between subpopulations such as cancer stem cells (CSCs......) and non-CSCs. The main goal of this project was to functionally characterize a set of candidate genes recovered from next-generation sequencing analysis for their role in breast cancer metastasis formation. The starting gene set comprised 104 gene variants; i.e. 57 wildtype and 47 mutated variants. During...

  16. Association of lung function genes with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Woo Jin; Lim, Myoung Nam; Hong, Yoonki; Silverman, Edwin K; Lee, Ji-Hyun; Jung, Bock Hyun; Ra, Seung Won; Choi, Hye Sook; Jung, Young Ju; Park, Yong Bum; Park, Myung Jae; Lee, Sei Won; Lee, Jae Seung; Oh, Yeon-Mok; Lee, Sang Do

    2014-08-01

    Spirometric measurements of pulmonary function are important in diagnosing and determining the severity of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). We performed this study to determine whether candidate genes identified in genome-wide association studies of spirometric measurements were associated with COPD and if they interacted with smoking intensity. The current analysis included 1,000 COPD subjects and 1,000 controls recruited from 24 hospital-based pulmonary clinics. Thirteen SNPs, chosen based on genome-wide association studies of spirometric measurements in the Korean population cohorts, were genotyped. Genetic association tests were performed, adjusting for age, sex, and smoking intensity, using models including a SNP-by-smoking interaction term. PID1 and FAM13A were significantly associated with COPD susceptibility. There were also significant interactions between SNPs in ACN9 and FAM13A and smoking pack-years, and an association of ACN9 with COPD in the lowest smoking tertile. The risk allele of FAM13A was associated with increased expression of FAM13A in the lung. We have validated associations of FAM13A and PID1 with COPD. ACN9 showed significant interaction with smoking and is a potential candidate gene for COPD. Significant associations of genetic variants of FAM13A with gene expression levels suggest that the associated loci may act as genetic regulatory elements for FAM13A gene expression.

  17. Dynamic changes in protein functional linkage networks revealed by integration with gene expression data.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shubhada R Hegde

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available Response of cells to changing environmental conditions is governed by the dynamics of intricate biomolecular interactions. It may be reasonable to assume, proteins being the dominant macromolecules that carry out routine cellular functions, that understanding the dynamics of protein:protein interactions might yield useful insights into the cellular responses. The large-scale protein interaction data sets are, however, unable to capture the changes in the profile of protein:protein interactions. In order to understand how these interactions change dynamically, we have constructed conditional protein linkages for Escherichia coli by integrating functional linkages and gene expression information. As a case study, we have chosen to analyze UV exposure in wild-type and SOS deficient E. coli at 20 minutes post irradiation. The conditional networks exhibit similar topological properties. Although the global topological properties of the networks are similar, many subtle local changes are observed, which are suggestive of the cellular response to the perturbations. Some such changes correspond to differences in the path lengths among the nodes of carbohydrate metabolism correlating with its loss in efficiency in the UV treated cells. Similarly, expression of hubs under unique conditions reflects the importance of these genes. Various centrality measures applied to the networks indicate increased importance for replication, repair, and other stress proteins for the cells under UV treatment, as anticipated. We thus propose a novel approach for studying an organism at the systems level by integrating genome-wide functional linkages and the gene expression data.

  18. Tmc gene therapy restores auditory function in deaf mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Askew, Charles; Rochat, Cylia; Pan, Bifeng; Asai, Yukako; Ahmed, Hena; Child, Erin; Schneider, Bernard L; Aebischer, Patrick; Holt, Jeffrey R

    2015-07-08

    Genetic hearing loss accounts for up to 50% of prelingual deafness worldwide, yet there are no biologic treatments currently available. To investigate gene therapy as a potential biologic strategy for restoration of auditory function in patients with genetic hearing loss, we tested a gene augmentation approach in mouse models of genetic deafness. We focused on DFNB7/11 and DFNA36, which are autosomal recessive and dominant deafnesses, respectively, caused by mutations in transmembrane channel-like 1 (TMC1). Mice that carry targeted deletion of Tmc1 or a dominant Tmc1 point mutation, known as Beethoven, are good models for human DFNB7/11 and DFNA36. We screened several adeno-associated viral (AAV) serotypes and promoters and identified AAV2/1 and the chicken β-actin (Cba) promoter as an efficient combination for driving the expression of exogenous Tmc1 in inner hair cells in vivo. Exogenous Tmc1 or its closely related ortholog, Tmc2, were capable of restoring sensory transduction, auditory brainstem responses, and acoustic startle reflexes in otherwise deaf mice, suggesting that gene augmentation with Tmc1 or Tmc2 is well suited for further development as a strategy for restoration of auditory function in deaf patients who carry TMC1 mutations. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  19. Genome-Wide Distribution, Organisation and Functional Characterization of Disease Resistance and Defence Response Genes across Rice Species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Sangeeta; Chand, Suresh; Singh, N. K.; Sharma, Tilak Raj

    2015-01-01

    The resistance (R) genes and defense response (DR) genes have become very important resources for the development of disease resistant cultivars. In the present investigation, genome-wide identification, expression, phylogenetic and synteny analysis was done for R and DR-genes across three species of rice viz: Oryza sativa ssp indica cv 93-11, Oryza sativa ssp japonica and wild rice species, Oryza brachyantha. We used the in silico approach to identify and map 786 R -genes and 167 DR-genes, 672 R-genes and 142 DR-genes, 251 R-genes and 86 DR-genes in the japonica, indica and O. brachyanth a genomes, respectively. Our analysis showed that 60.5% and 55.6% of the R-genes are tandemly repeated within clusters and distributed over all the rice chromosomes in indica and japonica genomes, respectively. The phylogenetic analysis along with motif distribution shows high degree of conservation of R- and DR-genes in clusters. In silico expression analysis of R-genes and DR-genes showed more than 85% were expressed genes showing corresponding EST matches in the databases. This study gave special emphasis on mechanisms of gene evolution and duplication for R and DR genes across species. Analysis of paralogs across rice species indicated 17% and 4.38% R-genes, 29% and 11.63% DR-genes duplication in indica and Oryza brachyantha, as compared to 20% and 26% duplication of R-genes and DR-genes in japonica respectively. We found that during the course of duplication only 9.5% of R- and DR-genes changed their function and rest of the genes have maintained their identity. Syntenic relationship across three genomes inferred that more orthology is shared between indica and japonica genomes as compared to brachyantha genome. Genome wide identification of R-genes and DR-genes in the rice genome will help in allele mining and functional validation of these genes, and to understand molecular mechanism of disease resistance and their evolution in rice and related species. PMID:25902056

  20. Trait-based approaches for understanding microbial biodiversity and ecosystem functioning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Krause, S.; Le Roux, X.; Niklaus, P.A.; van Bodegom, P.M.; Lennon, J.T.; Bertilsson, S.A.; Grossart, H.P.; Philippot, L.; Bodelier, P.L.E.

    2014-01-01

    In ecology, biodiversity-ecosystem functioning (BEF) research has seen a shift in perspective from taxonomy to function in the last two decades, with successful application of trait-based approaches. This shift offers opportunities for a deeper mechanistic understanding of the role of biodiversity

  1. An Active Learning Exercise to Facilitate Understanding of Nephron Function: Anatomy and Physiology of Renal Transporters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dirks-Naylor, Amie J.

    2016-01-01

    Renal transport is a central mechanism underlying electrolyte homeostasis, acid base balance and other essential functions of the kidneys in human physiology. Thus, knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of the nephron is essential for the understanding of kidney function in health and disease. However, students find this content difficult to…

  2. Target genes of myostatin loss-of-function in muscles of late bovine fetuses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hocquette Jean-François

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Myostatin, a muscle-specific member of the Transforming Growth Factor beta family, negatively regulates muscle development. Double-muscled (DM cattle have a loss-of-function mutation in their myostatin gene responsible for the hypermuscular phenotype. Thus, these animals are a good model for understanding the mechanisms underpinning muscular hypertrophy. In order to identify individual genes or networks that may be myostatin targets, we looked for genes that were differentially expressed between DM and normal (NM animals (n = 3 per group in the semitendinosus muscle (hypertrophied in DM animals at 260 days of fetal development (when the biochemical differentiation of muscle is intensive. A heterologous microarray (human and murine oligonucleotide sequences of around 6,000 genes expressed in muscle was used. Results Many genes were found to be differentially expressed according to genetic type (some with a more than 5-fold change, and according to the presence of one or two functional myostatin allele(s. They belonged to various functional categories. The genes down-regulated in DM fetuses were mainly those encoding extracellular matrix proteins, slow contractile proteins and ribosomal proteins. The genes up-regulated in DM fetuses were mainly involved in the regulation of transcription, cell cycle/apoptosis, translation or DNA metabolism. These data highlight features indicating that DM muscle is shifted towards a more glycolytic metabolism, and has an altered extracellular matrix composition (e.g. down-regulation of COL1A1 and COL1A2, and up-regulation of COL4A2 and decreased adipocyte differentiation (down-regulation of C1QTNF3. The altered gene expression in the three major muscle compartments (fibers, connective tissue and intramuscular adipose tissue is consistent with the well-known characteristics of DM cattle. In addition, novel potential targets of the myostatin gene were identified (MB, PLN, troponins, ZFHX1B

  3. Captured metagenomics: large-scale targeting of genes based on ‘sequence capture’ reveals functional diversity in soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manoharan, Lokeshwaran; Kushwaha, Sandeep K.; Hedlund, Katarina; Ahrén, Dag

    2015-01-01

    Microbial enzyme diversity is a key to understand many ecosystem processes. Whole metagenome sequencing (WMG) obtains information on functional genes, but it is costly and inefficient due to large amount of sequencing that is required. In this study, we have applied a captured metagenomics technique for functional genes in soil microorganisms, as an alternative to WMG. Large-scale targeting of functional genes, coding for enzymes related to organic matter degradation, was applied to two agricultural soil communities through captured metagenomics. Captured metagenomics uses custom-designed, hybridization-based oligonucleotide probes that enrich functional genes of interest in metagenomic libraries where only probe-bound DNA fragments are sequenced. The captured metagenomes were highly enriched with targeted genes while maintaining their target diversity and their taxonomic distribution correlated well with the traditional ribosomal sequencing. The captured metagenomes were highly enriched with genes related to organic matter degradation; at least five times more than similar, publicly available soil WMG projects. This target enrichment technique also preserves the functional representation of the soils, thereby facilitating comparative metagenomics projects. Here, we present the first study that applies the captured metagenomics approach in large scale, and this novel method allows deep investigations of central ecosystem processes by studying functional gene abundances. PMID:26490729

  4. Captured metagenomics: large-scale targeting of genes based on 'sequence capture' reveals functional diversity in soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manoharan, Lokeshwaran; Kushwaha, Sandeep K; Hedlund, Katarina; Ahrén, Dag

    2015-12-01

    Microbial enzyme diversity is a key to understand many ecosystem processes. Whole metagenome sequencing (WMG) obtains information on functional genes, but it is costly and inefficient due to large amount of sequencing that is required. In this study, we have applied a captured metagenomics technique for functional genes in soil microorganisms, as an alternative to WMG. Large-scale targeting of functional genes, coding for enzymes related to organic matter degradation, was applied to two agricultural soil communities through captured metagenomics. Captured metagenomics uses custom-designed, hybridization-based oligonucleotide probes that enrich functional genes of interest in metagenomic libraries where only probe-bound DNA fragments are sequenced. The captured metagenomes were highly enriched with targeted genes while maintaining their target diversity and their taxonomic distribution correlated well with the traditional ribosomal sequencing. The captured metagenomes were highly enriched with genes related to organic matter degradation; at least five times more than similar, publicly available soil WMG projects. This target enrichment technique also preserves the functional representation of the soils, thereby facilitating comparative metagenomics projects. Here, we present the first study that applies the captured metagenomics approach in large scale, and this novel method allows deep investigations of central ecosystem processes by studying functional gene abundances. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Kazusa DNA Research Institute.

  5. Molecular evolution accompanying functional divergence of duplicated genes along the plant starch biosynthesis pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nougué, Odrade; Corbi, Jonathan; Ball, Steven G; Manicacci, Domenica; Tenaillon, Maud I

    2014-05-15

    Starch is the main source of carbon storage in the Archaeplastida. The starch biosynthesis pathway (sbp) emerged from cytosolic glycogen metabolism shortly after plastid endosymbiosis and was redirected to the plastid stroma during the green lineage divergence. The SBP is a complex network of genes, most of which are members of large multigene families. While some gene duplications occurred in the Archaeplastida ancestor, most were generated during the sbp redirection process, and the remaining few paralogs were generated through compartmentalization or tissue specialization during the evolution of the land plants. In the present study, we tested models of duplicated gene evolution in order to understand the evolutionary forces that have led to the development of SBP in angiosperms. We combined phylogenetic analyses and tests on the rates of evolution along branches emerging from major duplication events in six gene families encoding sbp enzymes. We found evidence of positive selection along branches following cytosolic or plastidial specialization in two starch phosphorylases and identified numerous residues that exhibited changes in volume, polarity or charge. Starch synthases, branching and debranching enzymes functional specializations were also accompanied by accelerated evolution. However, none of the sites targeted by selection corresponded to known functional domains, catalytic or regulatory. Interestingly, among the 13 duplications tested, 7 exhibited evidence of positive selection in both branches emerging from the duplication, 2 in only one branch, and 4 in none of the branches. The majority of duplications were followed by accelerated evolution targeting specific residues along both branches. This pattern was consistent with the optimization of the two sub-functions originally fulfilled by the ancestral gene before duplication. Our results thereby provide strong support to the so-called "Escape from Adaptive Conflict" (EAC) model. Because none of the

  6. Functional metagenomics identifies novel genes ABCTPP, TMSRP1 and TLSRP1 among human gut enterotypes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Verma, Manoj Kumar; Ahmed, Vasim; Gupta, Shashank

    2018-01-01

    gut microbiome to identify candidate genes responsible for the salt stress tolerance. A plasmid borne metagenomic library of Bacteroidetes enriched human fecal metagenomic DNA led to identification of unique salt osmotolerance clones SR6 and SR7. Subsequent gene analysis combined with functional...... groups in a North Indian population. This study unravels an alternative method for imparting ionic stress tolerance, which may be prevalent in the human gut microbiome....... is an important aspect of gut microbes for their survival and colonization. Identification of these survival mechanisms is a pivotal step towards understanding genomic suitability of a symbiont for successful human gut colonization. Here we highlight our recent work applying functional metagenomics to study human...

  7. Functional imaging: monitoring heme oxygenase-1 gene expression in vivo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Weisheng; Reilly-Contag, Pamela; Stevenson, David K.; Contag, Christopher H.

    1999-07-01

    The regulation of genetic elements can be monitored in living animals using photoproteins as reporters. Heme oxygenase (HO) is the key catabolic enzyme in the heme degradation pathway. Here, HO expression serves as a model for in vivo functional imaging of transcriptional regulation of a clinically relevant gene. HO enzymatic activity is inhibited by heme analogs, metalloporphyrins, but many members of this family of compounds also activate transcription of the HO-1 promoter. The degree of transcriptional activation by twelve metalloporphyrins, differing at the central metal and porphyrin ring substituents, was evaluated in both NIH 3T3 stable lines and transgenic animals containing HO-1 promoter-luciferase gene fusions. In the correlative cell culture assays, the metalloporphyrins increased transcription form the full length HO promoter fusion to varying degrees, but none increased transcription from a truncated HO-1 promoter. These results suggested that one or both of the two distal enhancer elements located at -4 and -10 Kb upstream from transcriptional start are required for HO-1 induction by heme and its analogs. The full-length HO-1-luc fusion was then evaluated as a transgene in mice. It was possible to monitor the effects of the metalloporphyrins, SnMP and ZnPP, in living animals over time. This spatiotemporal analyses of gene expression in vivo implied that alterations in porphyrin ring substituents and the central metal may affect the extent of gene activation. These data further indicate that using photoprotein reporters, subtle differences in gene expression can be monitored in living animals.

  8. Induction of Protective Genes Leads to Islet Survival and Function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongjun Wang

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Islet transplantation is the most valid approach to the treatment of type 1 diabetes. However, the function of transplanted islets is often compromised since a large number of β cells undergo apoptosis induced by stress and the immune rejection response elicited by the recipient after transplantation. Conventional treatment for islet transplantation is to administer immunosuppressive drugs to the recipient to suppress the immune rejection response mounted against transplanted islets. Induction of protective genes in the recipient (e.g., heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1, A20/tumor necrosis factor alpha inducible protein3 (tnfaip3, biliverdin reductase (BVR, Bcl2, and others or administration of one or more of the products of HO-1 to the donor, the islets themselves, and/or the recipient offers an alternative or synergistic approach to improve islet graft survival and function. In this perspective, we summarize studies describing the protective effects of these genes on islet survival and function in rodent allogeneic and xenogeneic transplantation models and the prevention of onset of diabetes, with emphasis on HO-1, A20, and BVR. Such approaches are also appealing to islet autotransplantation in patients with chronic pancreatitis after total pancreatectomy, a procedure that currently only leads to 1/3 of transplanted patients being diabetes-free.

  9. Automatic annotation of protein motif function with Gene Ontology terms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gopalakrishnan Vanathi

    2004-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Conserved protein sequence motifs are short stretches of amino acid sequence patterns that potentially encode the function of proteins. Several sequence pattern searching algorithms and programs exist foridentifying candidate protein motifs at the whole genome level. However, amuch needed and importanttask is to determine the functions of the newly identified protein motifs. The Gene Ontology (GO project is an endeavor to annotate the function of genes or protein sequences with terms from a dynamic, controlled vocabulary and these annotations serve well as a knowledge base. Results This paperpresents methods to mine the GO knowledge base and use the association between the GO terms assigned to a sequence and the motifs matched by the same sequence as evidence for predicting the functions of novel protein motifs automatically. The task of assigning GO terms to protein motifsis viewed as both a binary classification and information retrieval problem, where PROSITE motifs are used as samples for mode training and functional prediction. The mutual information of a motif and aGO term association isfound to be a very useful feature. We take advantageof the known motifs to train a logistic regression classifier, which allows us to combine mutual information with other frequency-based features and obtain a probability of correctassociation. The trained logistic regression model has intuitively meaningful and logically plausible parameter values, and performs very well empirically according to our evaluation criteria. Conclusions In this research, different methods for automatic annotation of protein motifs have been investigated. Empirical result demonstrated that the methods have a great potential for detecting and augmenting information about thefunctions of newly discovered candidate protein motifs.

  10. Functional analysis of mating type genes and transcriptome analysis during fruiting body development of botrytis cinerea

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rodenburg, Sander Y.A.; Terhem, Razak B.; Veloso, Javier; Stassen, Joost H.M.; Kan, van Jan A.L.

    2018-01-01

    Botrytis cinerea is a plant-pathogenic fungus producing apothecia as sexual fruiting bodies. To study the function of mating type (MAT) genes, single-gene deletion mutants were generated in both genes of the MAT1-1 locus and both genes of the MAT1-2 locus. Deletion mutants in two MAT genes were

  11. The Functional Genetics of Handedness and Language Lateralization: Insights from Gene Ontology, Pathway and Disease Association Analyses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith Schmitz

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Handedness and language lateralization are partially determined by genetic influences. It has been estimated that at least 40 (and potentially more possibly interacting genes may influence the ontogenesis of hemispheric asymmetries. Recently, it has been suggested that analyzing the genetics of hemispheric asymmetries on the level of gene ontology sets, rather than at the level of individual genes, might be more informative for understanding the underlying functional cascades. Here, we performed gene ontology, pathway and disease association analyses on genes that have previously been associated with handedness and language lateralization. Significant gene ontology sets for handedness were anatomical structure development, pattern specification (especially asymmetry formation and biological regulation. Pathway analysis highlighted the importance of the TGF-beta signaling pathway for handedness ontogenesis. Significant gene ontology sets for language lateralization were responses to different stimuli, nervous system development, transport, signaling, and biological regulation. Despite the fact that some authors assume that handedness and language lateralization share a common ontogenetic basis, gene ontology sets barely overlap between phenotypes. Compared to genes involved in handedness, which mostly contribute to structural development, genes involved in language lateralization rather contribute to activity-dependent cognitive processes. Disease association analysis revealed associations of genes involved in handedness with diseases affecting the whole body, while genes involved in language lateralization were specifically engaged in mental and neurological diseases. These findings further support the idea that handedness and language lateralization are ontogenetically independent, complex phenotypes.

  12. The Functional Genetics of Handedness and Language Lateralization: Insights from Gene Ontology, Pathway and Disease Association Analyses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmitz, Judith; Lor, Stephanie; Klose, Rena; Güntürkün, Onur; Ocklenburg, Sebastian

    2017-01-01

    Handedness and language lateralization are partially determined by genetic influences. It has been estimated that at least 40 (and potentially more) possibly interacting genes may influence the ontogenesis of hemispheric asymmetries. Recently, it has been suggested that analyzing the genetics of hemispheric asymmetries on the level of gene ontology sets, rather than at the level of individual genes, might be more informative for understanding the underlying functional cascades. Here, we performed gene ontology, pathway and disease association analyses on genes that have previously been associated with handedness and language lateralization. Significant gene ontology sets for handedness were anatomical structure development, pattern specification (especially asymmetry formation) and biological regulation. Pathway analysis highlighted the importance of the TGF-beta signaling pathway for handedness ontogenesis. Significant gene ontology sets for language lateralization were responses to different stimuli, nervous system development, transport, signaling, and biological regulation. Despite the fact that some authors assume that handedness and language lateralization share a common ontogenetic basis, gene ontology sets barely overlap between phenotypes. Compared to genes involved in handedness, which mostly contribute to structural development, genes involved in language lateralization rather contribute to activity-dependent cognitive processes. Disease association analysis revealed associations of genes involved in handedness with diseases affecting the whole body, while genes involved in language lateralization were specifically engaged in mental and neurological diseases. These findings further support the idea that handedness and language lateralization are ontogenetically independent, complex phenotypes.

  13. Gene-disease network analysis reveals functional modules in mendelian, complex and environmental diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer-Mehren, Anna; Bundschus, Markus; Rautschka, Michael; Mayer, Miguel A; Sanz, Ferran; Furlong, Laura I

    2011-01-01

    Scientists have been trying to understand the molecular mechanisms of diseases to design preventive and therapeutic strategies for a long time. For some diseases, it has become evident that it is not enough to obtain a catalogue of the disease-related genes but to uncover how disruptions of molecular networks in the cell give rise to disease phenotypes. Moreover, with the unprecedented wealth of information available, even obtaining such catalogue is extremely difficult. We developed a comprehensive gene-disease association database by integrating associations from several sources that cover different biomedical aspects of diseases. In particular, we focus on the current knowledge of human genetic diseases including mendelian, complex and environmental diseases. To assess the concept of modularity of human diseases, we performed a systematic study of the emergent properties of human gene-disease networks by means of network topology and functional annotation analysis. The results indicate a highly shared genetic origin of human diseases and show that for most diseases, including mendelian, complex and environmental diseases, functional modules exist. Moreover, a core set of biological pathways is found to be associated with most human diseases. We obtained similar results when studying clusters of diseases, suggesting that related diseases might arise due to dysfunction of common biological processes in the cell. For the first time, we include mendelian, complex and environmental diseases in an integrated gene-disease association database and show that the concept of modularity applies for all of them. We furthermore provide a functional analysis of disease-related modules providing important new biological insights, which might not be discovered when considering each of the gene-disease association repositories independently. Hence, we present a suitable framework for the study of how genetic and environmental factors, such as drugs, contribute to diseases. The

  14. Physical models have gender‐specific effects on student understanding of protein structure–function relationships

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Michelle A.; Chang, Wesley S.; Dent, Erik W.; Nordheim, Erik V.; Franzen, Margaret A.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Understanding how basic structural units influence function is identified as a foundational/core concept for undergraduate biological and biochemical literacy. It is essential for students to understand this concept at all size scales, but it is often more difficult for students to understand structure–function relationships at the molecular level, which they cannot as effectively visualize. Students need to develop accurate, 3‐dimensional mental models of biomolecules to understand how biomolecular structure affects cellular functions at the molecular level, yet most traditional curricular tools such as textbooks include only 2‐dimensional representations. We used a controlled, backward design approach to investigate how hand‐held physical molecular model use affected students' ability to logically predict structure–function relationships. Brief (one class period) physical model use increased quiz score for females, whereas there was no significant increase in score for males using physical models. Females also self‐reported higher learning gains in their understanding of context‐specific protein function. Gender differences in spatial visualization may explain the gender‐specific benefits of physical model use observed. © 2016 The Authors Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 44(4):326–335, 2016. PMID:26923186

  15. Physical models have gender-specific effects on student understanding of protein structure-function relationships.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forbes-Lorman, Robin M; Harris, Michelle A; Chang, Wesley S; Dent, Erik W; Nordheim, Erik V; Franzen, Margaret A

    2016-07-08

    Understanding how basic structural units influence function is identified as a foundational/core concept for undergraduate biological and biochemical literacy. It is essential for students to understand this concept at all size scales, but it is often more difficult for students to understand structure-function relationships at the molecular level, which they cannot as effectively visualize. Students need to develop accurate, 3-dimensional mental models of biomolecules to understand how biomolecular structure affects cellular functions at the molecular level, yet most traditional curricular tools such as textbooks include only 2-dimensional representations. We used a controlled, backward design approach to investigate how hand-held physical molecular model use affected students' ability to logically predict structure-function relationships. Brief (one class period) physical model use increased quiz score for females, whereas there was no significant increase in score for males using physical models. Females also self-reported higher learning gains in their understanding of context-specific protein function. Gender differences in spatial visualization may explain the gender-specific benefits of physical model use observed. © 2016 The Authors Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 44(4):326-335, 2016. © 2016 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  16. Cloning and Functional Characterization of the Maize (Zea mays L.) Carotenoid Epsilon Hydroxylase Gene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheng, Yanmin; Wang, Yingdian; Capell, Teresa; Shi, Lianxuan; Ni, Xiuzhen; Sandmann, Gerhard; Christou, Paul; Zhu, Changfu

    2015-01-01

    The assignment of functions to genes in the carotenoid biosynthesis pathway is necessary to understand how the pathway is regulated and to obtain the basic information required for metabolic engineering. Few carotenoid ε-hydroxylases have been functionally characterized in plants although this would provide insight into the hydroxylation steps in the pathway. We therefore isolated mRNA from the endosperm of maize (Zea mays L., inbred line B73) and cloned a full-length cDNA encoding CYP97C19, a putative heme-containing carotenoid ε hydroxylase and member of the cytochrome P450 family. The corresponding CYP97C19 genomic locus on chromosome 1 was found to comprise a single-copy gene with nine introns. We expressed CYP97C19 cDNA under the control of the constitutive CaMV 35S promoter in the Arabidopsis thaliana lut1 knockout mutant, which lacks a functional CYP97C1 (LUT1) gene. The analysis of carotenoid levels and composition showed that lutein accumulated to high levels in the rosette leaves of the transgenic lines but not in the untransformed lut1 mutants. These results allowed the unambiguous functional annotation of maize CYP97C19 as an enzyme with strong zeinoxanthin ε-ring hydroxylation activity. PMID:26030746

  17. Cloning and Functional Characterization of the Maize (Zea mays L. Carotenoid Epsilon Hydroxylase Gene.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shu Chang

    Full Text Available The assignment of functions to genes in the carotenoid biosynthesis pathway is necessary to understand how the pathway is regulated and to obtain the basic information required for metabolic engineering. Few carotenoid ε-hydroxylases have been functionally characterized in plants although this would provide insight into the hydroxylation steps in the pathway. We therefore isolated mRNA from the endosperm of maize (Zea mays L., inbred line B73 and cloned a full-length cDNA encoding CYP97C19, a putative heme-containing carotenoid ε hydroxylase and member of the cytochrome P450 family. The corresponding CYP97C19 genomic locus on chromosome 1 was found to comprise a single-copy gene with nine introns. We expressed CYP97C19 cDNA under the control of the constitutive CaMV 35S promoter in the Arabidopsis thaliana lut1 knockout mutant, which lacks a functional CYP97C1 (LUT1 gene. The analysis of carotenoid levels and composition showed that lutein accumulated to high levels in the rosette leaves of the transgenic lines but not in the untransformed lut1 mutants. These results allowed the unambiguous functional annotation of maize CYP97C19 as an enzyme with strong zeinoxanthin ε-ring hydroxylation activity.

  18. Gene-environment interaction and male reproductive function

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Axelsson, Jonatan; Bonde, Jens Peter; Giwercman, Yvonne L

    2010-01-01

    As genetic factors can hardly explain the changes taking place during short time spans, environmental and lifestyle-related factors have been suggested as the causes of time-related deterioration of male reproductive function. However, considering the strong heterogeneity of male fecundity between...... and within populations, genetic variants might be important determinants of the individual susceptibility to the adverse effects of environment or lifestyle. Although the possible mechanisms of such interplay in relation to the reproductive system are largely unknown, some recent studies have indicated...... that specific genotypes may confer a larger risk of male reproductive disorders following certain exposures. This paper presents a critical review of animal and human evidence on how genes may modify environmental effects on male reproductive function. Some examples have been found that support this mechanism...

  19. Multiple functions of CREB-binding protein during postembryonic development: identification of target genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roy, Amit; George, Smitha; Palli, Subba Reddy

    2017-12-29

    Juvenile hormones (JH) and ecdysteroids control postembryonic development in insects. They serve as valuable targets for pest management. Hence, understanding the molecular mechanisms of their action is of crucial importance. CREB-binding protein (CBP) is a universal transcriptional co-regulator. It controls the expression of several genes including those from hormone signaling pathways through co-activation of many transcription factors. However, the role of CBP during postembryonic development in insects is not well understood. Therefore, we have studied the role of CBP in postembryonic development in Tribolium, a model coleopteran insect. CBP is ubiquitously expressed in the red flour beetle, Tribolium castaneum. RNA interference (RNAi) mediated knockdown of CBP resulted in a decrease in JH induction of Kr-h1 gene expression in Tribolium larvae and led to a block in their development. Moreover, the injection of CBP double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) showed lethal phenotypes within 8 days of injection. RNA-seq and subsequent differential gene expression analysis identified CBP target genes in Tribolium. Knockdown of CBP caused a decrease in the expression of 1306 genes coding for transcription factors and other proteins associated with growth and development. Depletion of CBP impaired the expression of several JH response genes (e.g., Kr-h1, Hairy, early trypsin) and ecdysone response genes (EcR, E74, E75, and broad complex). Further, GO enrichment analyses of the downregulated genes showed enrichment in different functions including developmental processes, pigmentation, anatomical structure development, regulation of biological and cellular processes, etc. These data suggest diverse but crucial roles for CBP during postembryonic development in the coleopteran model insect, Tribolium. It can serve as a target for RNAi mediated pest management of this stored product pest.

  20. The Effects of an Undergraduate Algebra Course on Prospective Middle School Teachers' Understanding of Functions, Especially Quadratic Functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duarte, Jonathan T.

    2010-01-01

    Although current reform movements have stressed the importance of developing prospective middle school mathematics teachers' subject matter knowledge and understandings, there is a dearth of research studies with regard to prospective middle school teachers' confidence and knowledge with respect to quadratic functions. This study was intended to…

  1. Genes implicated in serotonergic and dopaminergic functioning predict BMI categories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuemmeler, Bernard F; Agurs-Collins, Tanya D; McClernon, F Joseph; Kollins, Scott H; Kail, Melanie E; Bergen, Andrew W; Ashley-Koch, Allison E

    2008-02-01

    This study addressed the hypothesis that variation in genes associated with dopamine function (SLC6A3, DRD2, DRD4), serotonin function (SLC6A4, and regulation of monoamine levels (MAOA) may be predictive of BMI categories (obese and overweight + obese) in young adulthood and of changes in BMI as adolescents transition into young adulthood. Interactions with gender and race/ethnicity were also examined. Participants were a subsample of individuals from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health), a nationally representative sample of adolescents followed from 1995 to 2002. The sample analyzed included a subset of 1,584 unrelated individuals with genotype data. Multiple logistic regressions were conducted to evaluate the associations between genotypes and obesity (BMI > 29.9) or overweight + obese combined (BMI > or = 25) with normal weight (BMI = 18.5-24.9) as a referent. Linear regression models were used to examine change in BMI from adolescence to young adulthood. Significant associations were found between SLC6A4 5HTTLPR and categories of BMI, and between MAOA promoter variable number tandem repeat (VNTR) among men and categories of BMI. Stratified analyses revealed that the association between these two genes and excess BMI was significant for men overall and for white and Hispanic men specifically. Linear regression models indicated a significant effect of SLC6A4 5HTTLPR on change in BMI from adolescence to young adulthood. Our findings lend further support to the involvement of genes implicated in dopamine and serotonin regulation on energy balance.

  2. The challenges of understanding glycolipid functions: An open outlook based on molecular simulations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Manna, M.; Rog, T.; Vattulainen, I.

    2014-01-01

    and molecular simulations can be used to shed light on the role of glycolipids in membrane structure and dynamics, receptor function, and other phenomena related to emergence of diseases such as Parkinson's. The cases we discuss highlight the challenge to understand how glycolipids function in cell membranes......Glycolipids are the most complex lipid type in cell membranes, characterized by a great diversity of different structures and functions. The underlying atomistic/molecular interactions and mechanisms associated with these functions are not well understood. Here we discuss how atomistic...

  3. Improving understanding of the functional diversity of fisheries by exploring the influence of global catch reconstruction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nash, Kirsty L; Watson, Reg A; Halpern, Benjamin S; Fulton, Elizabeth A; Blanchard, Julia L

    2017-09-06

    Functional diversity is thought to enhance ecosystem resilience, driving research focused on trends in the functional composition of fisheries, most recently with new reconstructions of global catch data. However, there is currently little understanding of how accounting for unreported catches (e.g. small-scale and illegal fisheries, bycatch and discards) influences functional diversity trends in global fisheries. We explored how diversity estimates varied among reported and unreported components of catch in 2010, and found these components had distinct functional fingerprints. Incorporating unreported catches had little impact on global-scale functional diversity patterns. However, at smaller, management-relevant scales, the effects of incorporating unreported catches were large (changes in functional diversity of up to 46%). Our results suggest there is greater uncertainty about the risks to ecosystem integrity and resilience from current fishing patterns than previously recognized. We provide recommendations and suggest a research agenda to improve future assessments of functional diversity of global fisheries.

  4. Integrating network, sequence and functional features using machine learning approaches towards identification of novel Alzheimer genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamal, Salma; Goyal, Sukriti; Shanker, Asheesh; Grover, Abhinav

    2016-10-18

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a complex progressive neurodegenerative disorder commonly characterized by short term memory loss. Presently no effective therapeutic treatments exist that can completely cure this disease. The cause of Alzheimer's is still unclear, however one of the other major factors involved in AD pathogenesis are the genetic factors and around 70 % risk of the disease is assumed to be due to the large number of genes involved. Although genetic association studies have revealed a number of potential AD susceptibility genes, there still exists a need for identification of unidentified AD-associated genes and therapeutic targets to have better understanding of the disease-causing mechanisms of Alzheimer's towards development of effective AD therapeutics. In the present study, we have used machine learning approach to identify candidate AD associated genes by integrating topological properties of the genes from the protein-protein interaction networks, sequence features and functional annotations. We also used molecular docking approach and screened already known anti-Alzheimer drugs against the novel predicted probable targets of AD and observed that an investigational drug, AL-108, had high affinity for majority of the possible therapeutic targets. Furthermore, we performed molecular dynamics simulations and MM/GBSA calculations on the docked complexes to validate our preliminary findings. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first comprehensive study of its kind for identification of putative Alzheimer-associated genes using machine learning approaches and we propose that such computational studies can improve our understanding on the core etiology of AD which could lead to the development of effective anti-Alzheimer drugs.

  5. The construction of an amino acid network for understanding protein structure and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Wenying; Zhou, Jianhong; Sun, Maomin; Chen, Jiajia; Hu, Guang; Shen, Bairong

    2014-06-01

    Amino acid networks (AANs) are undirected networks consisting of amino acid residues and their interactions in three-dimensional protein structures. The analysis of AANs provides novel insight into protein science, and several common amino acid network properties have revealed diverse classes of proteins. In this review, we first summarize methods for the construction and characterization of AANs. We then compare software tools for the construction and analysis of AANs. Finally, we review the application of AANs for understanding protein structure and function, including the identification of functional residues, the prediction of protein folding, analyzing protein stability and protein-protein interactions, and for understanding communication within and between proteins.

  6. Sediment denitrifier community composition and nirS gene expression investigated with functional gene microarrays

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Francis, C.A.; Jackson, G.A.; Ward, B.B.

    2008-01-01

    A functional gene microarray was used to investigate denitrifier community composition and nitrite reductase (nirS) gene expression in sediments along the estuarine gradient in Chesapeake Bay, USA. The nirS oligonucleotide probe set was designed to represent a sequence database containing 539...... Chesapeake Bay clones, as well as sequences from many other environments. Greatest nirS diversity was detected at the freshwater station at the head of the bay and least diversity at the higher salinity station near the mouth of the Bay. The most common OTUs from the sequence database were detected...... on the array with high signal strength in most samples. One of the most abundant OTUs, CB2-S-138, was identified as dominant at the mid-bay site by both microarray and quantitative PCR assays, but it comprised a much smaller fraction of the assemblage in the north and south bay samples. cDNA (transcribed from...

  7. First survey and functional annotation of prohormone and convertase genes in the pig

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Porter Kenneth I

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The pig is a biomedical model to study human and livestock traits. Many of these traits are controlled by neuropeptides that result from the cleavage of prohormones by prohormone convertases. Only 45 prohormones have been confirmed in the pig. Sequence homology can be ineffective to annotate prohormone genes in sequenced species like the pig due to the multifactorial nature of the prohormone processing. The goal of this study is to undertake the first complete survey of prohormone and prohormone convertases genes in the pig genome. These genes were functionally annotated based on 35 gene expression microarray experiments. The cleavage sites of prohormone sequences into potentially active neuropeptides were predicted. Results We identified 95 unique prohormone genes, 2 alternative calcitonin-related sequences, 8 prohormone convertases and 1 cleavage facilitator in the pig genome 10.2 assembly and trace archives. Of these, 11 pig prohormone genes have not been reported in the UniProt, UniGene or Gene databases. These genes are intermedin, cortistatin, insulin-like 5, orexigenic neuropeptide QRFP, prokineticin 2, prolactin-releasing peptide, parathyroid hormone 2, urocortin, urocortin 2, urocortin 3, and urotensin 2-related peptide. In addition, a novel neuropeptide S was identified in the pig genome correcting the previously reported pig sequence that is identical to the rabbit sequence. Most differentially expressed prohormone genes were under-expressed in pigs experiencing immune challenge relative to the un-challenged controls, in non-pregnant relative to pregnant sows, in old relative to young embryos, and in non-neural relative to neural tissues. The cleavage prediction based on human sequences had the best performance with a correct classification rate of cleaved and non-cleaved sites of 92% suggesting that the processing of prohormones in pigs is similar to humans. The cleavage prediction models did not find conclusive

  8. A human-specific de novo protein-coding gene associated with human brain functions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chuan-Yun Li

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available To understand whether any human-specific new genes may be associated with human brain functions, we computationally screened the genetic vulnerable factors identified through Genome-Wide Association Studies and linkage analyses of nicotine addiction and found one human-specific de novo protein-coding gene, FLJ33706 (alternative gene symbol C20orf203. Cross-species analysis revealed interesting evolutionary paths of how this gene had originated from noncoding DNA sequences: insertion of repeat elements especially Alu contributed to the formation of the first coding exon and six standard splice junctions on the branch leading to humans and chimpanzees, and two subsequent substitutions in the human lineage escaped two stop codons and created an open reading frame of 194 amino acids. We experimentally verified FLJ33706's mRNA and protein expression in the brain. Real-Time PCR in multiple tissues demonstrated that FLJ33706 was most abundantly expressed in brain. Human polymorphism data suggested that FLJ33706 encodes a protein under purifying selection. A specifically designed antibody detected its protein expression across human cortex, cerebellum and midbrain. Immunohistochemistry study in normal human brain cortex revealed the localization of FLJ33706 protein in neurons. Elevated expressions of FLJ33706 were detected in Alzheimer's brain samples, suggesting the role of this novel gene in human-specific pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease. FLJ33706 provided the strongest evidence so far that human-specific de novo genes can have protein-coding potential and differential protein expression, and be involved in human brain functions.

  9. Invertebrate Trehalose-6-Phosphate Synthase Gene: Genetic Architecture, Biochemistry, Physiological Function, and Potential Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bin Tang

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The non-reducing disaccharide trehalose is widely distributed among various organisms. It plays a crucial role as an instant source of energy, being the major blood sugar in insects. In addition, it helps countering abiotic stresses. Trehalose synthesis in insects and other invertebrates is thought to occur via the trehalose-6-phosphate synthase (TPS and trehalose-6-phosphate phosphatase (TPP pathways. In many insects, the TPP gene has not been identified, whereas multiple TPS genes that encode proteins harboring TPS/OtsA and TPP/OtsB conserved domains have been found and cloned in the same species. The function of the TPS gene in insects and other invertebrates has not been reviewed in depth, and the available information is quite fragmented. The present review discusses the current understanding of the trehalose synthesis pathway, TPS genetic architecture, biochemistry, physiological function, and potential sensitivity to insecticides. We note the variability in the number of TPS genes in different invertebrate species, consider whether trehalose synthesis may rely only on the TPS gene, and discuss the results of in vitro TPS overexpression experiment. Tissue expression profile and developmental characteristics of the TPS gene indicate that it is important in energy production, growth and development, metamorphosis, stress recovery, chitin synthesis, insect flight, and other biological processes. We highlight the molecular and biochemical properties of insect TPS that make it a suitable target of potential pest control inhibitors. The application of trehalose synthesis inhibitors is a promising direction in insect pest control because vertebrates do not synthesize trehalose; therefore, TPS inhibitors would be relatively safe for humans and higher animals, making them ideal insecticidal agents without off-target effects.

  10. Invertebrate Trehalose-6-Phosphate Synthase Gene: Genetic Architecture, Biochemistry, Physiological Function, and Potential Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Bin; Wang, Su; Wang, Shi-Gui; Wang, Hui-Juan; Zhang, Jia-Yong; Cui, Shuai-Ying

    2018-01-01

    The non-reducing disaccharide trehalose is widely distributed among various organisms. It plays a crucial role as an instant source of energy, being the major blood sugar in insects. In addition, it helps countering abiotic stresses. Trehalose synthesis in insects and other invertebrates is thought to occur via the trehalose-6-phosphate synthase (TPS) and trehalose-6-phosphate phosphatase (TPP) pathways. In many insects, the TPP gene has not been identified, whereas multiple TPS genes that encode proteins harboring TPS/OtsA and TPP/OtsB conserved domains have been found and cloned in the same species. The function of the TPS gene in insects and other invertebrates has not been reviewed in depth, and the available information is quite fragmented. The present review discusses the current understanding of the trehalose synthesis pathway, TPS genetic architecture, biochemistry, physiological function, and potential sensitivity to insecticides. We note the variability in the number of TPS genes in different invertebrate species, consider whether trehalose synthesis may rely only on the TPS gene, and discuss the results of in vitro TPS overexpression experiment. Tissue expression profile and developmental characteristics of the TPS gene indicate that it is important in energy production, growth and development, metamorphosis, stress recovery, chitin synthesis, insect flight, and other biological processes. We highlight the molecular and biochemical properties of insect TPS that make it a suitable target of potential pest control inhibitors. The application of trehalose synthesis inhibitors is a promising direction in insect pest control because vertebrates do not synthesize trehalose; therefore, TPS inhibitors would be relatively safe for humans and higher animals, making them ideal insecticidal agents without off-target effects. PMID:29445344

  11. Molecular Properties and Functional Divergence of the Dehydroascorbate Reductase Gene Family in Lower and Higher Plants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuan-Jie Zhang

    Full Text Available Dehydroascorbate reductase (DHAR, which reduces oxidized ascorbate, is important for maintaining an appropriate ascorbate redox state in plant cells. To date, genome-wide molecular characterization of DHARs has only been conducted in bryophytes (Physcomitrella patens and eudicots (e.g. Arabidopsis thaliana. In this study, to gain a general understanding of the molecular properties and functional divergence of the DHARs in land plants, we further conducted a comprehensive analysis of DHARs from the lycophyte Selaginella moellendorffii, gymnosperm Picea abies and monocot Zea mays. DHARs were present as a small gene family in all of the land plants we examined, with gene numbers ranging from two to four. All the plants contained cytosolic and chloroplastic DHARs, indicating dehydroascorbate (DHA can be directly reduced in the cytoplasm and chloroplast by DHARs in all the plants. A novel vacuolar DHAR was found in Z. mays, indicating DHA may also be reduced in the vacuole by DHARs in Z. mays. The DHARs within each species showed extensive functional divergence in their gene structures, subcellular localizations, and enzymatic characteristics. This study provides new insights into the molecular characteristics and functional divergence of DHARs in land plants.

  12. Utility and Limitations of Using Gene Expression Data to Identify Functional Associations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sahra Uygun

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Gene co-expression has been widely used to hypothesize gene function through guilt-by association. However, it is not clear to what degree co-expression is informative, whether it can be applied to genes involved in different biological processes, and how the type of dataset impacts inferences about gene functions. Here our goal is to assess the utility and limitations of using co-expression as a criterion to recover functional associations between genes. By determining the percentage of gene pairs in a metabolic pathway with significant expression correlation, we found that many genes in the same pathway do not have similar transcript profiles and the choice of dataset, annotation quality, gene function, expression similarity measure, and clustering approach significantly impacts the ability to recover functional associations between genes using Arabidopsis thaliana as an example. Some datasets are more informative in capturing coordinated expression profiles and larger data sets are not always better. In addition, to recover the maximum number of known pathways and identify candidate genes with similar functions, it is important to explore rather exhaustively multiple dataset combinations, similarity measures, clustering algorithms and parameters. Finally, we validated the biological relevance of co-expression cluster memberships with an independent phenomics dataset and found that genes that consistently cluster with leucine degradation genes tend to have similar leucine levels in mutants. This study provides a framework for obtaining gene functional associations by maximizing the information that can be obtained from gene expression datasets.

  13. Students' Perceptions and Development of Conceptual Understanding Regarding Trigonometry and Trigonometric Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cetin, Omer Faruk

    2015-01-01

    This study aims to analyse university level mathematics education students' perceptions on conceptual understanding of trigonometry and trigonometric functions and their content development of these concepts. A case study was conducted with 90 freshman students of Elementary Mathematics Department. The data were gathered via a scale; they included…

  14. Dynamic Graphics in Excel for Teaching Statistics: Understanding the Probability Density Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coll-Serrano, Vicente; Blasco-Blasco, Olga; Alvarez-Jareno, Jose A.

    2011-01-01

    In this article, we show a dynamic graphic in Excel that is used to introduce an important concept in our subject, Statistics I: the probability density function. This interactive graphic seeks to facilitate conceptual understanding of the main aspects analysed by the learners.

  15. An Epistemological Inquiry into Organic Chemistry Education: Exploration of Undergraduate Students' Conceptual Understanding of Functional Groups

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akkuzu, Nalan; Uyulgan, Melis Arzu

    2016-01-01

    This study sought to determine the levels of conceptual understanding of undergraduate students regarding organic compounds within different functional groups. A total of 60 students who were enrolled in the Department of Secondary Science and Mathematics Education of a Faculty of Education at a state university in Turkey and who had followed an…

  16. Urban ecological stewardship: understanding the structure, function and network of community-based urban land management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erika s. Svendsen; Lindsay K. Campbell

    2008-01-01

    Urban environmental stewardship activities are on the rise in cities throughout the Northeast. Groups participating in stewardship activities range in age, size, and geography and represent an increasingly complex and dynamic arrangement of civil society, government and business sectors. To better understand the structure, function and network of these community-based...

  17. Integrating Model-Based Learning and Animations for Enhancing Students' Understanding of Proteins Structure and Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barak, Miri; Hussein-Farraj, Rania

    2013-01-01

    This paper describes a study conducted in the context of chemistry education reforms in Israel. The study examined a new biochemistry learning unit that was developed to promote in-depth understanding of 3D structures and functions of proteins and nucleic acids. Our goal was to examine whether, and to what extent teaching and learning via…

  18. Identification and Function of a Novel Candidate Gene for Asthma:ADAM 33

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John W. Holloway

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available Asthma is a complex disorder of inflammation and remodelling largely restricted to the conducting airways. It is a disorder where there are major genetics and environmental factors that interact together to initiate and propagate the disease into a chronic relapsing disorder. Until recently the genetic factors involved in disease pathogenesis have been restricted to variants in known molecules involved in the inflammatory or remodelling pathways. In this review evidence is presented for a new susceptibility gene for asthma, ADAM 33, that was identified by positional cloning. It is suggested that ADAM 33 plays a key role in predisposing to reduced lung function and bronchial hyperresponsiveness characteristic of asthma. Through an understanding of the disease-related SNPs(in ADAM 33it may be possible, not only to identify a gene based diagnostic test, but also to focus attention on developing a new treatment that reverses remodelling changes.

  19. Regulation and Function of Adult Neurogenesis: From Genes to Cognition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aimone, James B.; Li, Yan; Lee, Star W.; Clemenson, Gregory D.; Deng, Wei; Gage, Fred H.

    2014-01-01

    Adult neurogenesis in the hippocampus is a notable process due not only to its uniqueness and potential impact on cognition but also to its localized vertical integration of different scales of neuroscience, ranging from molecular and cellular biology to behavior. This review summarizes the recent research regarding the process of adult neurogenesis from these different perspectives, with particular emphasis on the differentiation and development of new neurons, the regulation of the process by extrinsic and intrinsic factors, and their ultimate function in the hippocampus circuit. Arising from a local neural stem cell population, new neurons progress through several stages of maturation, ultimately integrating into the adult dentate gyrus network. The increased appreciation of the full neurogenesis process, from genes and cells to behavior and cognition, makes neurogenesis both a unique case study for how scales in neuroscience can link together and suggests neurogenesis as a potential target for therapeutic intervention for a number of disorders. PMID:25287858

  20. Toward understanding the evolution of vertebrate gene regulatory networks: comparative genomics and epigenomic approaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez-Morales, Juan R

    2016-07-01

    Vertebrates, as most animal phyla, originated >500 million years ago during the Cambrian explosion, and progressively radiated into the extant classes. Inferring the evolutionary history of the group requires understanding the architecture of the developmental programs that constrain the vertebrate anatomy. Here, I review recent comparative genomic and epigenomic studies, based on ChIP-seq and chromatin accessibility, which focus on the identification of functionally equivalent cis-regulatory modules among species. This pioneer work, primarily centered in the mammalian lineage, has set the groundwork for further studies in representative vertebrate and chordate species. Mapping of active regulatory regions across lineages will shed new light on the evolutionary forces stabilizing ancestral developmental programs, as well as allowing their variation to sustain morphological adaptations on the inherited vertebrate body plan. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  1. Functional evolution of ADAMTS genes: Evidence from analyses of phylogeny and gene organization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Van Meir Erwin G

    2005-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The ADAMTS (A Disintegrin-like and Metalloprotease with Thrombospondin motifs proteins are a family of metalloproteases with sequence similarity to the ADAM proteases, that contain the thrombospondin type 1 sequence repeat motifs (TSRs common to extracellular matrix proteins. ADAMTS proteins have recently gained attention with the discovery of their role in a variety of diseases, including tissue and blood disorders, cancer, osteoarthritis, Alzheimer's and the genetic syndromes Weill-Marchesani syndrome (ADAMTS10, thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (ADAMTS13, and Ehlers-Danlos syndrome type VIIC (ADAMTS2 in humans and belted white-spotting mutation in mice (ADAMTS20. Results Phylogenetic analysis and comparison of the exon/intron organization of vertebrate (Homo, Mus, Fugu, chordate (Ciona and invertebrate (Drosophila and Caenorhabditis ADAMTS homologs has elucidated the evolutionary relationships of this important gene family, which comprises 19 members in humans. Conclusions The evolutionary history of ADAMTS genes in vertebrate genomes has been marked by rampant gene duplication, including a retrotransposition that gave rise to a distinct ADAMTS subfamily (ADAMTS1, -4, -5, -8, -15 that may have distinct aggrecanase and angiogenesis functions.

  2. Understanding heavy-oil molecular functionality and relations to fluid properties

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Andersen, S.I. [Schlumberger, DBR Technology Center, Edmonton AB (Canada)

    2011-07-01

    In the heavy oil industry, knowing oil properties is important to optimizing recovery, transport and refinery. Nitrogen, sulfur and oxygen compounds (NSOs) have an important impact on these properties but this is often overlooked. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the impact of functional groups in connection with heavy oil and asphaltenes. Experiments were carried out with asphaltenes altered by chemical surgery that removed specific functional interactions. Titration calorimetry and fluorescence spectroscopy were then done. Results highlighted the fact that functional groups are of key importance in the determination of heavy oil properties and that acidity can be considered the most important interaction. This paper demonstrated that the determination of specific interactions could be more important in assessing heavy oil properties than understanding their hydrocarbon structure; further work is needed to fully understand the role of sulfur and nitrogen species.

  3. The disequilibrium of nucleosomes distribution along chromosomes plays a functional and evolutionarily role in regulating gene expression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peng Cui

    Full Text Available To further understand the relationship between nucleosome-space occupancy (NO and global transcriptional activity in mammals, we acquired a set of genome-wide nucleosome distribution and transcriptome data from the mouse cerebrum and testis based on ChIP (H3-seq and RNA-seq, respectively. We identified a nearly consistent NO patterns among three mouse tissues--cerebrum, testis, and ESCs--and found, through clustering analysis for transcriptional activation, that the NO variations among chromosomes are closely associated with distinct expression levels between house-keeping (HK genes and tissue-specific (TS genes. Both TS and HK genes form clusters albeit the obvious majority. This feature implies that NO patterns, i.e. nucleosome binding and clustering, are coupled with gene clustering that may be functionally and evolutionarily conserved in regulating gene expression among different cell types.

  4. Functional linkage between genes that regulate osmotic stress responses and multidrug resistance transporters: challenges and opportunities for antibiotic discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, B Eleazar

    2014-01-01

    All cells need to protect themselves against the osmotic challenges of their environment by maintaining low permeability to ions across their cell membranes. This is a basic principle of cellular function, which is reflected in the interactions among ion transport and drug efflux genes that have arisen during cellular evolution. Thus, upon exposure to pore-forming antibiotics such as amphotericin B (AmB) or daptomycin (Dap), sensitive cells overexpress common resistance genes to protect themselves from added osmotic challenges. These genes share pathway interactions with the various types of multidrug resistance (MDR) transporter genes, which both preserve the native lipid membrane composition and at the same time eliminate disruptive hydrophobic molecules that partition excessively within the lipid bilayer. An increased understanding of the relationships between the genes (and their products) that regulate osmotic stress responses and MDR transporters will help to identify novel strategies and targets to overcome the current stalemate in drug discovery.

  5. The disequilibrium of nucleosomes distribution along chromosomes plays a functional and evolutionarily role in regulating gene expression

    KAUST Repository

    Cui, Peng

    2011-08-19

    To further understand the relationship between nucleosome-space occupancy (NO) and global transcriptional activity in mammals, we acquired a set of genome-wide nucleosome distribution and transcriptome data from the mouse cerebrum and testis based on ChIP (H3)-seq and RNA-seq, respectively. We identified a nearly consistent NO patterns among three mouse tissues-cerebrum, testis, and ESCs-and found, through clustering analysis for transcriptional activation, that the NO variations among chromosomes are closely associated with distinct expression levels between house-keeping (HK) genes and tissue-specific (TS) genes. Both TS and HK genes form clusters albeit the obvious majority. This feature implies that NO patterns, i.e. nucleosome binding and clustering, are coupled with gene clustering that may be functionally and evolutionarily conserved in regulating gene expression among different cell types. © 2011 Cui et al.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Promponas Vasilis J

    2003-10-01

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

  7. Salicin regulates the expression of functional 'youth gene clusters' to reflect a more youthful gene expression profile.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gopaul, R; Knaggs, H E; Lephart, J

    2011-10-01

    There are a variety of biological mechanisms that contribute to specific characteristics of ageing skin; for example, the loss of skin structure proteins, increased susceptibility to UV-induced pigmentation and/or loss of hydration. Each of these biological processes is influenced by specific groups of genes. In this research, we have identified groups of genes associated with specific clinical signs of skin ageing and refer to these as functional 'youth gene clusters'. In this study, quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) was used to investigate the effects of topical application of salicin in regulating the expression of functional 'youth gene clusters' to reflect a more youthful skin profile and reduce the appearance of attributes associated with skin ageing. Results showed that salicin significantly influences the gene expression profiles of treated human equivalent full-thickness skin, by regulating the expression of genes associated with various biological processes involving skin structure, skin hydration, pigmentation and cellular differentiation. Based on the findings from this experiment, salicin was identified as a key ingredient that may regulate functional 'youth gene clusters' to reflect a more youthful gene expression profile by increasing the expression of genes responsible for youthful skin and decreasing the expression of genes responsible for the appearance of aged skin. © 2011 The Authors. ICS © 2011 Society of Cosmetic Scientists and the Société Française de Cosmétologie.

  8. (TG/CAn repeats in human gene families: abundance and selective patterns of distribution according to function and gene length

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramachandran Srinivasan

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Creation of human gene families was facilitated significantly by gene duplication and diversification. The (TG/CAn repeats exhibit length variability, display genome-wide distribution, and are abundant in the human genome. Accumulation of evidences for their multiple functional roles including regulation of transcription and stimulation of recombination and splicing elect them as functional elements. Here, we report analysis of the distribution of (TG/CAn repeats in human gene families. Results The 1,317 human gene families were classified into six functional classes. Distribution of (TG/CAn repeats were analyzed both from a global perspective and from a stratified perspective based on their biological properties. The number of genes with repeats decreased with increasing repeat length and several genes (53% had repeats of multiple types in various combinations. Repeats were positively associated with the class of Signaling and communication whereas, they were negatively associated with the classes of Immune and related functions and of Information. The proportion of genes with (TG/CAn repeats in each class was proportional to the corresponding average gene length. The repeat distribution pattern in large gene families generally mirrored the global distribution pattern but differed particularly for Collagen gene family, which was rich in repeats. The position and flanking sequences of the repeats of Collagen genes showed high conservation in the Chimpanzee genome. However the majority of these repeats displayed length polymorphism. Conclusion Positive association of repeats with genes of Signaling and communication points to their role in modulation of transcription. Negative association of repeats in genes of Information relates to the smaller gene length, higher expression and fundamental role in cellular physiology. In genes of Immune and related functions negative association of repeats perhaps relates to the smaller gene

  9. Functional Genes of Microorganisms, Comprehending the Dynamics of Agricultural Ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catiusca Reali

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT The microbial composition of different types,in ecosystems (including agro-ecosystems, has been investigated in a rapidly growing number of studies in the past few years. The importance of microorganisms, regarding the maintenance and stability of nutrients in agroecosystems, is a key to maintain the sustainability of a crop. Molecular tools to study microbial communities are possible through many methods such as RISA, DGGE, TGGE, clone libraries, T-RFLP, RAPD, SSCP and more recently NGS (Next-Generation Sequencing. DGGE is widely employed to characterize the diversity and the community dynamics of microorganisms in the environment, making possible to find out specific groups through functional genes, allowing access to data that cannot be obtained by cultural methods. The aim of this paper is to review the functional groups related to agroecosystems and to indicate the critical choice of DNA primers pairs and targeted DNA regions that may be used in PCR-based methods such as the DGGE technique in order to evaluate the microbial communities in a variety of environments.

  10. Comparison of functional gene annotation of Toxascaris leonina and Toxocara canis using CLC genomics workbench.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Ki Uk; Park, Sang Kyun; Kang, Shin Ae; Park, Mi Kyung; Cho, Min Kyoung; Jung, Ho-Jin; Kim, Kyung-Yun; Yu, Hak Sun

    2013-10-01

    The ascarids, Toxocara canis and Toxascaris leonina, are probably the most common gastrointestinal helminths encountered in dogs. In order to understand biological differences of 2 ascarids, we analyzed gene expression profiles of female adults of T. canis and T. leonina using CLC Genomics Workbench, and the results were compared with those of free-living nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. A total of 2,880 and 7,949 ESTs were collected from T. leonina and T. canis, respectively. The length of ESTs ranged from 106 to 4,637 bp with an average insert size of 820 bp. Overall, our results showed that most functional gene annotations of 2 ascarids were quite similar to each other in 3 major categories, i.e., cellular component, biological process, and molecular function. Although some different transcript expression categories were found, the distance was short and it was not enough to explain their different lifestyles. However, we found distinguished transcript differences between ascarid parasites and free-living nematodes. Understanding evolutionary genetic changes might be helpful for studies of the lifestyle and evolution of parasites.

  11. Exploiting genes and functional diversity of chlorogenic acid and luteolin biosyntheses in Lonicera japonica and their substitutes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Yuan; Wang, Zhouyong; Jiang, Chao; Wang, Xumin; Huang, Luqi

    2014-01-25

    Chlorogenic acids (CGAs) and luteolin are active compounds in Lonicera japonica, a plant of high medicinal value in traditional Chinese medicine. This study provides a comprehensive overview of gene families involved in chlorogenic acid and luteolin biosynthesis in L. japonica, as well as its substitutes Lonicera hypoglauca and Lonicera macranthoides. The gene sequence feature and gene expression patterns in various tissues and buds of the species were characterized. Bioinformatics analysis revealed that 14 chlorogenic acid and luteolin biosynthesis-related genes were identified from the L. japonica transcriptome assembly. Phylogenetic analyses suggested that the function of individual gene could be differentiation and induce active compound diversity. Their orthologous genes were also recognized in L. hypoglauca and L. macranthoides genomic datasets, except for LHCHS1 and LMC4H2. The expression patterns of these genes are different in the tissues of L. japonica, L. hypoglauca and L. macranthoides. Results also showed that CGAs were controlled in the first step of biosynthesis, whereas both steps controlled luteolin in the bud of L. japonica. The expression of LJFNS2 exhibited positive correlation with luteolin levels in L. japonica. This study provides significant information for understanding the functional diversity of gene families involved in chlorogenic acid and the luteolin biosynthesis, active compound diversity of L. japonica and its substitutes, and the different usages of the three species. Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  12. Vimentin-ERK Signaling Uncouples Slug Gene Regulatory Function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Virtakoivu, Reetta; Mai, Anja; Mattila, Elina; De Franceschi, Nicola; Imanishi, Susumu Y; Corthals, Garry; Kaukonen, Riina; Saari, Markku; Cheng, Fang; Torvaldson, Elin; Kosma, Veli-Matti; Mannermaa, Arto; Muharram, Ghaffar; Gilles, Christine; Eriksson, John; Soini, Ylermi; Lorens, James B; Ivaska, Johanna

    2015-06-01

    Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in cells is a developmental process adopted during tumorigenesis that promotes metastatic capacity. In this study, we advance understanding of EMT control in cancer cells with the description of a novel vimentin-ERK axis that regulates the transcriptional activity of Slug (SNAI2). Vimentin, ERK, and Slug exhibited overlapping subcellular localization in clinical specimens of triple-negative breast carcinoma. RNAi-mediated ablation of these gene products inhibited cancer cell migration and cell invasion through a laminin-rich matrix. Biochemical analyses demonstrated direct interaction of vimentin and ERK, which promoted ERK activation and enhanced vimentin transcription. Consistent with its role as an intermediate filament, vimentin acted as a scaffold to recruit Slug to ERK and promote Slug phosphorylation at serine-87. Site-directed mutagenesis established a requirement for ERK-mediated Slug phosphorylation in EMT initiation. Together, these findings identified a pivotal step in controlling the ability of Slug to organize hallmarks of EMT. ©2015 American Association for Cancer Research.

  13. Shotgun Metagenomic Sequencing Reveals Functional Genes and Microbiome Associated with Bovine Digital Dermatitis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Zinicola

    Full Text Available Metagenomic methods amplifying 16S ribosomal RNA genes have been used to describe the microbial diversity of healthy skin and lesion stages of bovine digital dermatitis (DD and to detect critical pathogens involved with disease pathogenesis. In this study, we characterized the microbiome and for the first time, the composition of functional genes of healthy skin (HS, active (ADD and inactive (IDD lesion stages using a whole-genome shotgun approach. Metagenomic sequences were annotated using MG-RAST pipeline. Six phyla were identified as the most abundant. Firmicutes and Actinobacteria were the predominant bacterial phyla in the microbiome of HS, while Spirochetes, Bacteroidetes and Proteobacteria were highly abundant in ADD and IDD. T. denticola-like, T. vincentii-like and T. phagedenis-like constituted the most abundant species in ADD and IDD. Recruitment plots comparing sequences from HS, ADD and IDD samples to the genomes of specific Treponema spp., supported the presence of T. denticola and T. vincentii in ADD and IDD. Comparison of the functional composition of HS to ADD and IDD identified a significant difference in genes associated with motility/chemotaxis and iron acquisition/metabolism. We also provide evidence that the microbiome of ADD and IDD compared to that of HS had significantly higher abundance of genes associated with resistance to copper and zinc, which are commonly used in footbaths to prevent and control DD. In conclusion, the results from this study provide new insights into the HS, ADD and IDD microbiomes, improve our understanding of the disease pathogenesis and generate unprecedented knowledge regarding the functional genetic composition of the digital dermatitis microbiome.

  14. Genome-wide gene expression regulation as a function of genotype and age in C. elegans

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Viñuela Rodriguez, A.; Snoek, L.B.; Riksen, J.A.G.; Kammenga, J.E.

    2010-01-01

    Gene expression becomes more variable with age, and it is widely assumed that this is due to a decrease in expression regulation. But currently there is no understanding how gene expression regulatory patterns progress with age. Here we explored genome-wide gene expression variation and regulatory

  15. A genome-wide gene function prediction resource for Drosophila melanogaster.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Han Yan

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Predicting gene functions by integrating large-scale biological data remains a challenge for systems biology. Here we present a resource for Drosophila melanogaster gene function predictions. We trained function-specific classifiers to optimize the influence of different biological datasets for each functional category. Our model predicted GO terms and KEGG pathway memberships for Drosophila melanogaster genes with high accuracy, as affirmed by cross-validation, supporting literature evidence, and large-scale RNAi screens. The resulting resource of prioritized associations between Drosophila genes and their potential functions offers a guide for experimental investigations.

  16. Molecular cloning and functional analysis of the gene encoding ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    STORAGESEVER

    2010-06-07

    Jun 7, 2010 ... synthase (crtB), phytoene desaturase (crtL) and lycopene cyclase. (crtY). It also retains a chloramphenicol resistance gene. Cells of E. coli containing this plasmid produce and accumulate β-carotene, resulting in yellow colonies. The plasmid, pTrc-ATIPI, retains an ampicillin resistance gene and an IPI gene ...

  17. Modulating gene function with peptide nucleic acids (PNA)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Peter E.; Crooke, Stanley T.

    2008-01-01

    A review on peptide nucleic acid (PNA) oligomers as modulators of gene expression ranging from gene silencing at the mRNAor the dsDNA (antigene) level, and redirection of mRNA splicing to gene activation through transcription bubble mimicking. PNA chem., anti-infective agents, cellular delivery...

  18. Plant resistance genes : their structure, function and evolution

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Takken, F.L.W.; Joosten, M.H.A.J.

    2000-01-01

    Plants have developed efficient mechanisms to avoid infection or to mount responses that render them resistant upon attack by a pathogen. One of the best-studied defence mechanisms is based on gene-for-gene resistance through which plants, harbouring specific resistance (R) genes, specifically

  19. Functionalized nanoparticles for AMF-induced gene and drug delivery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biswas, Souvik

    The properties and broad applications of nano-magnetic colloids have generated much interest in recent years. Specially, Fe3O4 nanoparticles have attracted a great deal of attention since their magnetic properties can be used for hyperthermia treatment or drug targeting. For example, enhanced levels of intracellular gene delivery can be achieved using Fe3O4 nano-vectors in the presence of an external magnetic field, a process known as 'magnetofection'. The low cytotoxicity, tunable particle size, ease of surface functionalization, and ability to generate thermal energy using an external alternating magnetic field (AMF) are properties have propelled Fe3O4 research to the forefront of nanoparticle research. The strategy of nanoparticle-mediated, AMF-induced heat generation has been used to effect intracellular hyperthermia. One application of this 'magnetic hyperthermia' is heat activated local delivery of a therapeutic effector (e.g.; drug or polynucleotide). This thesis describes the development of a magnetic nano-vector for AMF-induced, heat-activated pDNA and small molecule delivery. The use of heat-inducible vectors, such as heat shock protein ( hsp) genes, is a promising mode of gene therapy that would restrict gene expression to a local region by focusing a heat stimulus only at a target region. We thus aimed to design an Fe3O4 nanoparticle-mediated gene transfer vehicle for AMF-induced localized gene expression. We opted to use 'click' oximation techniques to assemble the magnetic gene transfer vector. Chapter 2 describes the synthesis, characterization, and transfection studies of the oxime ether lipid-based nano-magnetic vectors MLP and dMLP. The synthesis and characterization of a novel series of quaternary ammonium aminooxy reagents (2.1--2.4) is described. These cationic aminooxy compounds were loaded onto nanoparticles for ligation with carbonyl groups and also to impart a net positive charge on the nanoparticle surface. Our studies indicated that the

  20. Recent advances in understanding lung function development [version 1; referees: 2 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erik Melén

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Recent years have witnessed critical contributions to our understanding of the determinants and long-term implications of lung function development. In this article, we review studies that have contributed to advances in understanding lung function development and its critical importance for lung health into adult life. In particular, we have focused on early life determinants that include genetic factors, perinatal events, environmental exposures, lifestyle, infancy lower respiratory tract infections, and persistent asthma phenotypes. Longitudinal studies have conclusively demonstrated that lung function deficits that are established by school age may track into adult life and increase the risk of adult lung obstructive diseases, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Furthermore, these contributions have provided initial evidence in support of a direct influence by early life events on an accelerated decline of lung function and an increased susceptibility to its environmental determinants well into adult life. As such, we argue that future health-care programs based on precision medicine approaches that integrate deep phenotyping with tailored medication and advice to patients should also foster optimal lung function growth to be fully effective.

  1. The Importance of Understanding Hierarchical Relations between High Order Mental Functions in Clinical Practice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benedetto Farina

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The state-of-the-art in studies on mentalization suggests that capacity to understand other minds (mindreading, self introspection and consciousness, mental time travel in the past and the present, linguistic communication, are different components of a hierarchical organization of several functions reflecting the evolutionary development of the specie and integrates increasingly complex, mutually coordinated brain levels. The understanding of the precise hierarchical relations between them, that reflect the phylo- and ontogenetic evolutionary pathway for adaptation to the complex interpersonal and socio-cultural environment, has an essential application in psychopathology and psychotherapy, in particular for those clinical conditions where the normal integration of high order mental functions is hampered by developmental relational trauma.

  2. Gene-gene interaction and functional impact of polymorphisms on innate immune genes in controlling Plasmodium falciparum blood infection level.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Madhumita Basu

    Full Text Available Genetic variations in toll-like receptors and cytokine genes of the innate immune pathways have been implicated in controlling parasite growth and the pathogenesis of Plasmodium falciparum mediated malaria. We previously published genetic association of TLR4 non-synonymous and TNF-α promoter polymorphisms with P.falciparum blood infection level and here we extend the study considerably by (i investigating genetic dependence of parasite-load on interleukin-12B polymorphisms, (ii reconstructing gene-gene interactions among candidate TLRs and cytokine loci, (iii exploring genetic and functional impact of epistatic models and (iv providing mechanistic insights into functionality of disease-associated regulatory polymorphisms. Our data revealed that carriage of AA (P = 0.0001 and AC (P = 0.01 genotypes of IL12B 3'UTR polymorphism was associated with a significant increase of mean log-parasitemia relative to rare homozygous genotype CC. Presence of IL12B+1188 polymorphism in five of six multifactor models reinforced its strong genetic impact on malaria phenotype. Elevation of genetic risk in two-component models compared to the corresponding single locus and reduction of IL12B (2.2 fold and lymphotoxin-α (1.7 fold expressions in patients'peripheral-blood-mononuclear-cells under TLR4Thr399Ile risk genotype background substantiated the role of Multifactor Dimensionality Reduction derived models. Marked reduction of promoter activity of TNF-α risk haplotype (C-C-G-G compared to wild-type haplotype (T-C-G-G with (84% and without (78% LPS stimulation and the loss of binding of transcription factors detected in-silico supported a causal role of TNF-1031. Significantly lower expression of IL12B+1188 AA (5 fold and AC (9 fold genotypes compared to CC and under-representation (P = 0.0048 of allele A in transcripts of patients' PBMCs suggested an Allele-Expression-Imbalance. Allele (A+1188C dependent differential stability (2 fold of IL12B-transcripts upon

  3. Understanding how prevocational training on care farms can lead to functioning, motivation and well-being.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellingsen-Dalskau, Lina H; Berget, Bente; Pedersen, Ingeborg; Tellnes, Gunnar; Ihlebæk, Camilla

    2016-12-01

    Prevocational training aims to improve basic vocational and social skills, supporting return to work for people who have been out of work for a long time. Care farms provide prevocational training; the aim of the study was to use the self-determination theory to gain an understanding of how these programmes can lead to healthy functioning and motivation for clients. A total of 194 participants in prevocational training on care farms answered questions about demographic information, their perception of being a colleague, the social community on the farm, experiencing nature and animals and need satisfaction. A cross-sectional design resulting in a structural equation model was used to understand how elements of the care farm context influence satisfaction of three psychological needs. The results showed that a feeling of being a useful colleague led to competence, experiencing a sense of group belonging led to relatedness and autonomy, while receiving social support from the farmer led to satisfaction of all three needs for the participants. The results explain how prevocational training can stimulate participants' functionality, motivation and well-being. This understanding enables initiators and managers of prevocational training to understand and further strengthen the need-supportive elements of such programmes. Implications for Rehabilitation Prevocational training on care farms can facilitate motivation, functioning and well-being for clients. Making clients feel like useful colleagues that belong to a client group will strengthen the positive qualities of these programmes. Support, understanding and acknowledgement from the farmer are the most important elements for a positive development for the clients.

  4. Ecosystem function in waste stabilisation ponds: Improving water quality through a better understanding of biophysical coupling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghadouani, Anas; Reichwaldt, Elke S.; Coggins, Liah X.; Ivey, Gregory N.; Ghisalberti, Marco; Zhou, Wenxu; Laurion, Isabelle; Chua, Andrew

    2014-05-01

    Wastewater stabilisation ponds (WSPs) are highly productive systems designed to treat wastewater using only natural biological and chemical processes. Phytoplankton, microbial communities and hydraulics play important roles for ecosystem functionality of these pond systems. Although WSPs have been used for many decades, they are still considered as 'black box' systems as very little is known about the fundamental ecological processes which occur within them. However, a better understanding of how these highly productive ecosystems function is particularly important for hydrological processes, as treated wastewater is commonly discharged into streams, rivers, and oceans, and subject to strict water quality guidelines. WSPs are known to operate at different levels of efficiency, and treatment efficiency of WSPs is dependent on physical (flow characteristics and sludge accumulation and distribution) and biological (microbial and phytoplankton communities) characteristics. Thus, it is important to gain a better understanding of the role and influence of pond hydraulics and vital microbial communities on pond performance and WSP functional stability. The main aim of this study is to investigate the processes leading to differences in treatment performance of WSPs. This study uses a novel and innovative approach to understand these factors by combining flow cytometry and metabolomics to investigate various biochemical characteristics, including the metabolite composition and microbial community within WSPs. The results of these analyses will then be combined with results from the characterisation of pond hydrodynamics and hydraulic performance, which will be performed using advanced hydrodynamic modelling and advanced sludge profiling technology. By understanding how hydrodynamic and biological processes influence each other and ecosystem function and stability in WSPs, we will be able to propose ways to improve the quality of the treatment using natural processes, with

  5. Understanding, predicting and controlling the physicochemical functionality of rice protein ingredients

    OpenAIRE

    Amagliani, Luca

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this research was to characterise the nutrient composition and protein profile of a range of intact and hydrolysed rice protein ingredients, to benchmark their physicochemical properties against those of selected commercial dairy protein ingredients, and to develop tailored solutions for understanding, predicting, modifying and controlling their functionality in food systems. The rice protein ingredients studied had protein contents in the range 32-78%, and lower levels of calcium ...

  6. Iron homeostasis in Arabidopsis thaliana: transcriptomic analyses reveal novel FIT-regulated genes, iron deficiency marker genes and functional gene networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mai, Hans-Jörg; Pateyron, Stéphanie; Bauer, Petra

    2016-10-03

    FIT (FER-LIKE IRON DEFICIENCY-INDUCED TRANSCRIPTION FACTOR) is the central regulator of iron uptake in Arabidopsis thaliana roots. We performed transcriptome analyses of six day-old seedlings and roots of six week-old plants using wild type, a fit knock-out mutant and a FIT over-expression line grown under iron-sufficient or iron-deficient conditions. We compared genes regulated in a FIT-dependent manner depending on the developmental stage of the plants. We assembled a high likelihood dataset which we used to perform co-expression and functional analysis of the most stably iron deficiency-induced genes. 448 genes were found FIT-regulated. Out of these, 34 genes were robustly FIT-regulated in root and seedling samples and included 13 novel FIT-dependent genes. Three hundred thirty-one genes showed differential regulation in response to the presence and absence of FIT only in the root samples, while this was the case for 83 genes in the seedling samples. We assembled a virtual dataset of iron-regulated genes based on a total of 14 transcriptomic analyses of iron-deficient and iron-sufficient wild-type plants to pinpoint the best marker genes for iron deficiency and analyzed this dataset in depth. Co-expression analysis of this dataset revealed 13 distinct regulons part of which predominantly contained functionally related genes. We could enlarge the list of FIT-dependent genes and discriminate between genes that are robustly FIT-regulated in roots and seedlings or only in one of those. FIT-regulated genes were mostly induced, few of them were repressed by FIT. With the analysis of a virtual dataset we could filter out and pinpoint new candidates among the most reliable marker genes for iron deficiency. Moreover, co-expression and functional analysis of this virtual dataset revealed iron deficiency-induced and functionally distinct regulons.

  7. Integrating Model-Based Learning and Animations for Enhancing Students' Understanding of Proteins Structure and Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barak, Miri; Hussein-Farraj, Rania

    2013-04-01

    This paper describes a study conducted in the context of chemistry education reforms in Israel. The study examined a new biochemistry learning unit that was developed to promote in-depth understanding of 3D structures and functions of proteins and nucleic acids. Our goal was to examine whether, and to what extent teaching and learning via model-based learning and animations of biomolecules affect students' chemical understanding. Applying the mixed methods research paradigm, pre- and post-questionnaires as well as class-observations were employed in the collection, analysis, and interpretation of data. The research population included 175 grade twelve students, divided into three research groups: (a) hands-on exploration of animations, (b) teacher's demonstrations of animations, (c) traditional learning using textbooks. Findings indicated that the integration of model-based learning and 3D animations enhanced students' understanding of proteins' structure and function and their ability to transfer across different levels of chemistry understanding. Findings also indicated that teachers' demonstrations of animations may enhance students' `knowledge'—a low order thinking skill; however, in order to enhance higher levels of thinking, students should be able to explore 3D animations on their own. Applying constructivist and interpretative analysis of the data, three themes were raised, corresponding to cognitive, affective, and social aspects of learning while exploring web-based models and animations.

  8. Understanding gene expression variability in its biological context using theoretical and experimental analyses of single cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kempe, H.

    2017-01-01

    Traditional gene expression studies have largely ignored cell-to-cell variability in transcription. Current methods allow for single cell analyses and have shown considerable variability in gene expression, even in populations of isogenic cells exposed to the same growth environment. In this thesis,

  9. Design-Based Learning for Biology: Genetic Engineering Experience Improves Understanding of Gene Expression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellefson, Michelle R.; Brinker, Rebecca A.; Vernacchio, Vincent J.; Schunn, Christian D.

    2008-01-01

    Gene expression is a difficult topic for students to learn and comprehend, at least partially because it involves various biochemical structures and processes occurring at the microscopic level. Designer Bacteria, a design-based learning (DBL) unit for high-school students, applies principles of DBL to the teaching of gene expression. Throughout…

  10. Using Sibling Designs to Understand Neurodevelopmental Disorders: From Genes and Environments to Prevention Programming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wade, Mark; Prime, Heather; Madigan, Sheri

    2015-01-01

    Neurodevelopmental disorders represent a broad class of childhood neurological conditions that have a significant bearing on the wellbeing of children, families, and communities. In this review, we draw on evidence from two common and widely studied neurodevelopmental disorders-autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)-to demonstrate the utility of genetically informed sibling designs in uncovering the nature and pathogenesis of these conditions. Specifically, we examine how twin, recurrence risk, and infant prospective tracking studies have contributed to our understanding of genetic and environmental liabilities towards neurodevelopmental morbidity through their impact on neurocognitive processes and structural/functional neuroanatomy. It is suggested that the siblings of children with ASD and ADHD are at risk not only of clinically elevated problems in these areas, but also of subthreshold symptoms and/or subtle impairments in various neurocognitive skills and other domains of psychosocial health. Finally, we close with a discussion on the practical relevance of sibling designs and how these might be used in the service of early screening, prevention, and intervention efforts that aim to alleviate the negative downstream consequences associated with disorders of neurodevelopment.

  11. Using Sibling Designs to Understand Neurodevelopmental Disorders: From Genes and Environments to Prevention Programming

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark Wade

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Neurodevelopmental disorders represent a broad class of childhood neurological conditions that have a significant bearing on the wellbeing of children, families, and communities. In this review, we draw on evidence from two common and widely studied neurodevelopmental disorders—autism spectrum disorder (ASD and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD—to demonstrate the utility of genetically informed sibling designs in uncovering the nature and pathogenesis of these conditions. Specifically, we examine how twin, recurrence risk, and infant prospective tracking studies have contributed to our understanding of genetic and environmental liabilities towards neurodevelopmental morbidity through their impact on neurocognitive processes and structural/functional neuroanatomy. It is suggested that the siblings of children with ASD and ADHD are at risk not only of clinically elevated problems in these areas, but also of subthreshold symptoms and/or subtle impairments in various neurocognitive skills and other domains of psychosocial health. Finally, we close with a discussion on the practical relevance of sibling designs and how these might be used in the service of early screening, prevention, and intervention efforts that aim to alleviate the negative downstream consequences associated with disorders of neurodevelopment.

  12. Functional cohesion of gene sets determined by latent semantic indexing of PubMed abstracts.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lijing Xu

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available High-throughput genomic technologies enable researchers to identify genes that are co-regulated with respect to specific experimental conditions. Numerous statistical approaches have been developed to identify differentially expressed genes. Because each approach can produce distinct gene sets, it is difficult for biologists to determine which statistical approach yields biologically relevant gene sets and is appropriate for their study. To address this issue, we implemented Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI to determine the functional coherence of gene sets. An LSI model was built using over 1 million Medline abstracts for over 20,000 mouse and human genes annotated in Entrez Gene. The gene-to-gene LSI-derived similarities were used to calculate a literature cohesion p-value (LPv for a given gene set using a Fisher's exact test. We tested this method against genes in more than 6,000 functional pathways annotated in Gene Ontology (GO and found that approximately 75% of gene sets in GO biological process category and 90% of the gene sets in GO molecular function and cellular component categories were functionally cohesive (LPv<0.05. These results indicate that the LPv methodology is both robust and accurate. Application of this method to previously published microarray datasets demonstrated that LPv can be helpful in selecting the appropriate feature extraction methods. To enable real-time calculation of LPv for mouse or human gene sets, we developed a web tool called Gene-set Cohesion Analysis Tool (GCAT. GCAT can complement other gene set enrichment approaches by determining the overall functional cohesion of data sets, taking into account both explicit and implicit gene interactions reported in the biomedical literature.GCAT is freely available at http://binf1.memphis.edu/gcat.

  13. Functional cohesion of gene sets determined by latent semantic indexing of PubMed abstracts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Lijing; Furlotte, Nicholas; Lin, Yunyue; Heinrich, Kevin; Berry, Michael W; George, Ebenezer O; Homayouni, Ramin

    2011-04-14

    High-throughput genomic technologies enable researchers to identify genes that are co-regulated with respect to specific experimental conditions. Numerous statistical approaches have been developed to identify differentially expressed genes. Because each approach can produce distinct gene sets, it is difficult for biologists to determine which statistical approach yields biologically relevant gene sets and is appropriate for their study. To address this issue, we implemented Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) to determine the functional coherence of gene sets. An LSI model was built using over 1 million Medline abstracts for over 20,000 mouse and human genes annotated in Entrez Gene. The gene-to-gene LSI-derived similarities were used to calculate a literature cohesion p-value (LPv) for a given gene set using a Fisher's exact test. We tested this method against genes in more than 6,000 functional pathways annotated in Gene Ontology (GO) and found that approximately 75% of gene sets in GO biological process category and 90% of the gene sets in GO molecular function and cellular component categories were functionally cohesive (LPvmethod to previously published microarray datasets demonstrated that LPv can be helpful in selecting the appropriate feature extraction methods. To enable real-time calculation of LPv for mouse or human gene sets, we developed a web tool called Gene-set Cohesion Analysis Tool (GCAT). GCAT can complement other gene set enrichment approaches by determining the overall functional cohesion of data sets, taking into account both explicit and implicit gene interactions reported in the biomedical literature. GCAT is freely available at http://binf1.memphis.edu/gcat.

  14. Understanding the cognitive underpinnings of functional impairments in early dementia: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giebel, Clarissa M; Challis, David; Montaldi, Daniela

    2015-01-01

    Early dementia is marked by cognitive and functional impairments, and although studies indicate an association between these, detailed analyses exploring this relationship are rare. It is crucial to understand how specific cognitive deficits underlie functional deficits to develop successful cognitive interventions. This paper reviews the evidence of impairment in everyday functioning and in working, long-term and prospective memory in early dementia. Findings are evaluated with respect to the relationship between cognitive and functional impairments. From the literature searches, 17 studies on everyday functioning and 40 studies on memory were obtained. Studies were only included if patients had an official diagnosis and were in the early stages of dementia. Complex instrumental activities of daily living were subject to greater impairment than basic activities of daily living. In particular, early dementia patients struggle with finance tasks; a deficit linked to impaired working memory. Regarding cognition, long-term memory is the earliest form of memory to decline as is well recognised. Evidence also indicates deficits in working and prospective memory, with inconsistent evidence about impairments of the former. A major limitation of the literature is a lack of studies assessing individual everyday activities and the associated error patterns that might occur. This review critically assesses the status of translational research for everyday activities in early dementia, an area with critical implications for cognitive-based rehabilitation. Further research is required into the detailed assessment of individual everyday activity and specific memory deficits, in order to effectively map cognitive functions onto functional performance.

  15. The heterochronic gene Lin28 regulates amphibian metamorphosis through disturbance of thyroid hormone function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faunes, Fernando; Gundermann, Daniel G; Muñoz, Rosana; Bruno, Renzo; Larraín, Juan

    2017-05-15

    Metamorphosis is a classic example of developmental transition, which involves important morphological and physiological changes that prepare the organism for the adult life. It has been very well established that amphibian metamorphosis is mainly controlled by Thyroid Hormone (TH). Here, we show that the heterochronic gene Lin28 is downregulated during Xenopus laevis metamorphosis. Lin28 overexpression before activation of TH signaling delays metamorphosis and inhibits the expression of TH target genes. The delay in metamorphosis is rescued by incubation with exogenous TH, indicating that Lin28 works upstream or parallel to TH. High-throughput analyses performed before any delay on metamorphosis or change in TH signaling showed that overexpression of Lin28 reduces transcript levels of several hormones secreted by the pituitary, including the Thyroid-Stimulating Hormone (TSH), and regulates the expression of proteins involved in TH transport, metabolism and signaling, showing that Lin28 disrupts TH function at different levels. Our data demonstrates that the role of Lin28 in controlling developmental transitions is evolutionary conserved and establishes a functional interaction between Lin28 and thyroid hormone function introducing a new regulatory step in perinatal development with implications for our understanding of endocrine disorders. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Functional Metagenomics as a Tool for Identification of New Antibiotic Resistance Genes from Natural Environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dos Santos, Débora Farage Knupp; Istvan, Paula; Quirino, Betania Ferraz; Kruger, Ricardo Henrique

    2017-02-01

    Antibiotic resistance has become a major concern for human and animal health, as therapeutic alternatives to treat multidrug-resistant microorganisms are rapidly dwindling. The problem is compounded by low investment in antibiotic research and lack of new effective antimicrobial drugs on the market. Exploring environmental antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) will help us to better understand bacterial resistance mechanisms, which may be the key to identifying new drug targets. Because most environment-associated microorganisms are not yet cultivable, culture-independent techniques are essential to determine which organisms are present in a given environmental sample and allow the assessment and utilization of the genetic wealth they represent. Metagenomics represents a powerful tool to achieve these goals using sequence-based and functional-based approaches. Functional metagenomic approaches are particularly well suited to the identification new ARGs from natural environments because, unlike sequence-based approaches, they do not require previous knowledge of these genes. This review discusses functional metagenomics-based ARG research and describes new possibilities for surveying the resistome in environmental samples.

  17. Understanding immune function as a pace of life trait requires environmental context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tieleman, B Irene

    2018-01-01

    This article provides a brief historical perspective on the integration of physiology into the concept of the pace of life of birds, evaluates the fit of immune function into this framework, and asks what it will take to fruitfully understand immune functioning of birds in pace of life studies in the future. In the late 1970s, physiology started to seriously enter avian life history ecology, with energy as the main currency of interest, inspired by David Lack's work in the preceding decades emphasizing how food availability explained life history variation. In an effort to understand the trade-off between survival and reproduction, and specifically the mortality costs associated with hard work, in the 1980s and 1990s, other physiological phenomena entered the realm of animal ecologists, including endocrinology, oxidative stress, and immunology. Reviewing studies thus far to evaluate the role of immune function in a life history context and particularly to address the questions whether immune function (1) consistently varies with life history variation among free-living bird species and (2) mediates life history trade-offs in experiments with free-living bird species; I conclude that, unlike energy metabolism, the immune system does not closely covary with life history among species nor mediates the classical trade-offs within individuals. Instead, I propose that understanding the tremendous immunological variation uncovered among free-living birds over the past 25 years requires a paradigm shift. The paradigm should shift from viewing immune function as a costly trait involved in life history trade-offs to explicitly including the benefits of the immune system and placing it firmly in an environmental and ecological context. A first step forward will be to quantify the immunobiotic pressures presented by diverse environmental circumstances that both shape and challenge the immune system of free-living animals. Current developments in the fields of infectious

  18. From Process Understanding Via Soil Functions to Sustainable Soil Management - A Systemic Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wollschlaeger, U.; Bartke, S.; Bartkowski, B.; Daedlow, K.; Helming, K.; Kogel-Knabner, I.; Lang, B.; Rabot, E.; Russell, D.; Stößel, B.; Weller, U.; Wiesmeier, M.; Rabot, E.; Vogel, H. J.

    2017-12-01

    Fertile soils are central resources for the production of biomass and the provision of food and energy. A growing world population and latest climate targets lead to an increasing demand for both, food and bio-energy, which requires preserving and improving the long-term productivity of soils as a bio-economic resource. At the same time, other soil functions and ecosystem services need to be maintained: filter for clean water, carbon sequestration, provision and recycling of nutrients, and habitat for biological activity. All these soil functions result from the interaction of a multitude of physical, chemical and biological processes that are not yet sufficiently understood. In addition, we lack understanding about the interplay between the socio-economic system and the soil system and how soil functions benefit human wellbeing. Hence, a solid and integrated assessment of soil quality requires the consideration of the ensemble of soil functions and its relation to soil management to finally be able to develop site-specific options for sustainable soil management. We present an integrated modeling approach that investigates the influence of soil management on the ensemble of soil functions. It is based on the mechanistic relationships between soil functional attributes, each explained by a network of interacting processes as derived from scientific evidence. As the evidence base required for feeding the model is for the most part stored in the existing scientific literature, another central component of our work is to set up a public "knowledge-portal" providing the infrastructure for a community effort towards a comprehensive knowledge base on soil processes as a basis for model developments. The connection to the socio-economic system is established using the Drivers-Pressures-Impacts-States-Responses (DPSIR) framework where our improved understanding about soil ecosystem processes is linked to ecosystem services and resource efficiency via the soil functions.

  19. Functional Analysis of the FZF1 Genes of Saccharomyces uvarum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaozhen Liu

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Being a sister species of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Saccharomyces uvarum shows great potential regarding the future of the wine industry. The sulfite tolerance of most S. uvarum strains is poor, however. This is a major flaw that limits its utility in the wine industry. In S. cerevisiae, FZF1 plays a positive role in the transcription of SSU1, which encodes a sulfite efflux transport protein that is critical for sulfite tolerance. Although FZF1 has previously been shown to play a role in sulfite tolerance in S. uvarum, there is little information about its action mechanism. To assess the function of FZF1, two over-expression vectors that contained different FZF1 genes, and one FZF1 silencing vector, were constructed and introduced into a sulfite-tolerant S. uvarum strain using electroporation. In addition, an FZF1-deletion strain was constructed. Both of the FZF1-over-expressing strains showed an elevated tolerance to sulfite, and the FZF1-deletion strain showed the opposite effect. Repression of FZF1 transcription failed, however, presumably due to the lack of alleles of DCR1 and AGO. The qRT-PCR analysis was used to examine changes in transcription in the strains. Surprisingly, neither over-expressing strain promoted SSU1 transcription, although MET4 and HAL4 transcripts significantly increased in both sulfite-tolerance increased strains. We conclude that FZF1 plays a different role in the sulfite tolerance of S. uvarum compared to its role in S. cerevisiae.

  20. Functional Expression of an Orchid Fragrance Gene in Lactococcus lactis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Adelene Ai Lian; Abdullah, Janna O.; Abdullah, Mohd Puad; Shafee, Norazizah; Rahim, Raha A.

    2012-01-01

    Vanda Mimi Palmer (VMP), an orchid hybrid of Vanda tesselata and Vanda Tan Chay Yan is a highly scented tropical orchid which blooms all year round. Previous studies revealed that VMP produces a variety of isoprenoid volatiles during daylight. Isoprenoids are well known to contribute significantly to the scent of most fragrant plants. They are a large group of secondary metabolites which may possess valuable characteristics such as flavor, fragrance and toxicity and are produced via two pathways, the mevalonate (MVA) pathway or/and the 2-C-methyl-D-erythritol-4-phosphate (MEP) pathway. In this study, a sesquiterpene synthase gene denoted VMPSTS, previously isolated from a floral cDNA library of VMP was cloned and expressed in Lactococcus lactis to characterize the functionality of the protein. L. lactis, a food grade bacterium which utilizes the mevalonate pathway for isoprenoid production was found to be a suitable host for the characterization of plant terpene synthases. Through recombinant expression of VMPSTS, it was revealed that VMPSTS produced multiple sesquiterpenes and germacrene D dominates its profile. PMID:22408409

  1. MicroRNA mediated network motifs in autoimmune diseases and its crosstalk between genes, functions and pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prabahar, Archana; Natarajan, Jeyakumar

    2017-01-01

    Autoimmune diseases (AIDs) are incurable but suppressible diseases whose molecular mechanisms are yet to be elucidated. In this work, we selected five systemic autoimmune diseases such as Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), Type 1 Diabetes (T1D), Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), Autoimmune Thyroid Disease (ATD) and Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE). Heterogeneous data such as miRNA, transcription factor (TF), target genes and protein-protein interactions involved in these AIDs were integrated to understand their roles at different functional levels of miRNA such as transcription initiation, gene regulatory network formation and post transcriptional regulation. To understand the functional characteristics of these complex biological networks, they can be simplified as network motifs (sub networks) and motif-motif interacting pairs (MMIs). The network motif patterns and motif-motif interacting pairs that occur for the selected five diseases were identified. To further understand the functional association between AIDs, functions and pathways were determined using gene set enrichment analysis and five selected immune signaling pathways (ISPs). The crosstalk within AIDs and between the immune signaling pathways (ISPs) could provide novel insights in deciphering disease mechanisms. This study represents the first investigation of miRNA-TF regulatory network for AIDs and its association with ISPs using sub-network motifs. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Commentary: When does understanding phenotypic evolution require identification of the underlying genes?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rausher, Mark D; Delph, Lynda F

    2015-07-01

    Adaptive evolution is fundamentally a genetic process. Over the past three decades, characterizing the genes underlying adaptive phenotypic change has revealed many important aspects of evolutionary change. At the same time, natural selection is often fundamentally an ecological process that can often be studied without identifying the genes underlying the variation on which it acts. This duality has given rise to disagreement about whether, and under what circumstances, it is necessary to identify specific genes associated with phenotypic change. This issue is of practical concern, especially for researchers who study nonmodel organisms, because of the often enormous cost and labor required to "go for the genes." We here consider a number of situations and questions commonly addressed by researchers. Our conclusion is that although gene identification can be crucial for answering some questions, there are others for which definitive answers can be obtained without finding underlying genes. It should thus not be assumed that considerations of "empirical completeness" dictate that gene identification is always desirable. © 2015 The Author(s). Evolution © 2015 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  3. Gene-Disease Network Analysis Reveals Functional Modules in Mendelian, Complex and Environmental Diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer-Mehren, Anna; Bundschus, Markus; Rautschka, Michael; Mayer, Miguel A.; Sanz, Ferran; Furlong, Laura I.

    2011-01-01

    Background Scientists have been trying to understand the molecular mechanisms of diseases to design preventive and therapeutic strategies for a long time. For some diseases, it has become evident that it is not enough to obtain a catalogue of the disease-related genes but to uncover how disruptions of molecular networks in the cell give rise to disease phenotypes. Moreover, with the unprecedented wealth of information available, even obtaining such catalogue is extremely difficult. Principal Findings We developed a comprehensive gene-disease association database by integrating associations from several sources that cover different biomedical aspects of diseases. In particular, we focus on the current knowledge of human genetic diseases including mendelian, complex and environmental diseases. To assess the concept of modularity of human diseases, we performed a systematic study of the emergent properties of human gene-disease networks by means of network topology and functional annotation analysis. The results indicate a highly shared genetic origin of human diseases and show that for most diseases, including mendelian, complex and environmental diseases, functional modules exist. Moreover, a core set of biological pathways is found to be associated with most human diseases. We obtained similar results when studying clusters of diseases, suggesting that related diseases might arise due to dysfunction of common biological processes in the cell. Conclusions For the first time, we include mendelian, complex and environmental diseases in an integrated gene-disease association database and show that the concept of modularity applies for all of them. We furthermore provide a functional analysis of disease-related modules providing important new biological insights, which might not be discovered when considering each of the gene-disease association repositories independently. Hence, we present a suitable framework for the study of how genetic and environmental factors

  4. Gene-disease network analysis reveals functional modules in mendelian, complex and environmental diseases.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Bauer-Mehren

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Scientists have been trying to understand the molecular mechanisms of diseases to design preventive and therapeutic strategies for a long time. For some diseases, it has become evident that it is not enough to obtain a catalogue of the disease-related genes but to uncover how disruptions of molecular networks in the cell give rise to disease phenotypes. Moreover, with the unprecedented wealth of information available, even obtaining such catalogue is extremely difficult. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We developed a comprehensive gene-disease association database by integrating associations from several sources that cover different biomedical aspects of diseases. In particular, we focus on the current knowledge of human genetic diseases including mendelian, complex and environmental diseases. To assess the concept of modularity of human diseases, we performed a systematic study of the emergent properties of human gene-disease networks by means of network topology and functional annotation analysis. The results indicate a highly shared genetic origin of human diseases and show that for most diseases, including mendelian, complex and environmental diseases, functional modules exist. Moreover, a core set of biological pathways is found to be associated with most human diseases. We obtained similar results when studying clusters of diseases, suggesting that related diseases might arise due to dysfunction of common biological processes in the cell. CONCLUSIONS: For the first time, we include mendelian, complex and environmental diseases in an integrated gene-disease association database and show that the concept of modularity applies for all of them. We furthermore provide a functional analysis of disease-related modules providing important new biological insights, which might not be discovered when considering each of the gene-disease association repositories independently. Hence, we present a suitable framework for the study of how genetic and

  5. ASSESSING CONCEPTUAL UNDERSTANDING IN MATHEMATICS: Using Derivative Function to Solve Connected Problems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nevin ORHUN

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Open and distance education plays an important role in the actualization of cultural goals as well as in societal developments. This is an independent teaching and learning method for mathematics which forms the dynamic of scientific thinking. Distance education is an important alternative to traditional teaching applications. These contributions brought by technology enable students to participate actively in having access to information and questioning it. Such an application increases students’ motivation and teaches how mathematics can be used in daily life. Derivative is a mathematical concept which can be used in many areas of daily life. The aim of this study is to enable the concept of derivatives to be understood well by using the derivative function in the solution of various problems. It also aims at interpreting difficulties theoretically in the solution of problems and determining mistakes in terms of teaching methods. In this study, how various aspects of derivatives are understood is emphasized. These aspects concern the explanation of concepts and process, and also their application to certain concepts in physics. Students’ depth of understanding of derivatives was analyzed based on two aspects of understanding; theoretical analysis and contextual application. Follow-up interviews were conducted with five students. The results show that the students preferred to apply an algebraic symbolic aspect instead of using logical meanings of function and its derivative. In addition, in relation to how the graph of the derivative function affects the aspect of function, it was determined that the students displayed low performance.

  6. Recessive Cancer Genes Engage in Negative Genetic Interactions with Their Functional Paralogs

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    Matteo D’Antonio

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Cancer genetic heterogeneity offers a wide repertoire of molecular determinants to be screened as therapeutic targets. Here, we identify potential anticancer targets by exploiting negative genetic interactions between genes with driver loss-of-function mutations (recessive cancer genes and their functionally redundant paralogs. We identify recessive genes with additional copies and experimentally test our predictions on three paralogous pairs. We confirm digenic negative interactions between two cancer genes (SMARCA4 and CDH1 and their corresponding paralogs (SMARCA2 and CDH3. Furthermore, we identify a trigenic negative interaction between the cancer gene DNMT3A, its functional paralog DNMT3B, and a third gene, DNMT1, which encodes the only other human DNA-methylase domain. Although our study does not exclude other causes of synthetic lethality, it suggests that functionally redundant paralogs of cancer genes could be targets in anticancer therapy.

  7. Annotating the Function of the Human Genome with Gene Ontology and Disease Ontology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Yang; Zhou, Wenyang; Ren, Jun; Dong, Lixiang; Wang, Yadong; Jin, Shuilin; Cheng, Liang

    2016-01-01

    Increasing evidences indicated that function annotation of human genome in molecular level and phenotype level is very important for systematic analysis of genes. In this study, we presented a framework named Gene2Function to annotate Gene Reference into Functions (GeneRIFs), in which each functional description of GeneRIFs could be annotated by a text mining tool Open Biomedical Annotator (OBA), and each Entrez gene could be mapped to Human Genome Organisation Gene Nomenclature Committee (HGNC) gene symbol. After annotating all the records about human genes of GeneRIFs, 288,869 associations between 13,148 mRNAs and 7,182 terms, 9,496 associations between 948 microRNAs and 533 terms, and 901 associations between 139 long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) and 297 terms were obtained as a comprehensive annotation resource of human genome. High consistency of term frequency of individual gene (Pearson correlation = 0.6401, p = 2.2e - 16) and gene frequency of individual term (Pearson correlation = 0.1298, p = 3.686e - 14) in GeneRIFs and GOA shows our annotation resource is very reliable.

  8. Functionally Relevant Microsatellite Markers From Chickpea Transcription Factor Genes for Efficient Genotyping Applications and Trait Association Mapping

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kujur, Alice; Bajaj, Deepak; Saxena, Maneesha S.; Tripathi, Shailesh; Upadhyaya, Hari D.; Gowda, C.L.L.; Singh, Sube; Jain, Mukesh; Tyagi, Akhilesh K.; Parida, Swarup K.

    2013-01-01

    We developed 1108 transcription factor gene-derived microsatellite (TFGMS) and 161 transcription factor functional domain-associated microsatellite (TFFDMS) markers from 707 TFs of chickpea. The robust amplification efficiency (96.5%) and high intra-specific polymorphic potential (34%) detected by markers suggest their immense utilities in efficient large-scale genotyping applications, including construction of both physical and functional transcript maps and understanding population structure. Candidate gene-based association analysis revealed strong genetic association of TFFDMS markers with three major seed and pod traits. Further, TFGMS markers in the 5′ untranslated regions of TF genes showing differential expression during seed development had higher trait association potential. The significance of TFFDMS markers was demonstrated by correlating their allelic variation with amino acid sequence expansion/contraction in the functional domain and alteration of secondary protein structure encoded by genes. The seed weight-associated markers were validated through traditional bi-parental genetic mapping. The determination of gene-specific linkage disequilibrium (LD) patterns in desi and kabuli based on single nucleotide polymorphism-microsatellite marker haplotypes revealed extended LD decay, enhanced LD resolution and trait association potential of genes. The evolutionary history of a strong seed-size/weight-associated TF based on natural variation and haplotype sharing among desi, kabuli and wild unravelled useful information having implication for seed-size trait evolution during chickpea domestication. PMID:23633531

  9. Functional evolution of duplicated odorant-binding protein genes, Obp57d and Obp57e, in Drosophila.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eriko Harada

    Full Text Available Odorant-binding proteins (OBPs are extracellular proteins found in insect chemosensilla, where they participate in the sensing of odors, tastes, and pheromones. Although a large number of OBP genes have been identified in insect genomes, their molecular functions and biological roles have been clarified in limited cases. Two OBP genes, Obp57d and Obp57e, were involved in the evolution of host-plant preference in Drosophila sechellia. Comparative analyses of the Obp57d/e genomic sequences from 27 closely related species suggested that the two genes arose by tandem gene duplication and functionally diverged from each other. In this study, the functional evolution of Obp57d and Obp57e was examined by in vitro binding assays using recombinant proteins synthesized in a bacterial system. Compared to the ancestral Dpse\\OBP57de, Dmel\\OBP57d was more specialized to tridecanoic acid while Dmel\\OBP57e was generalized regarding their binding affinity, suggesting that the two OBP genes underwent subfunctionalization and neofunctionalization. A behavioral analysis using knockout flies supported that the biological role is different between OBP57d and OBP57e in vivo. Site-directed mutagenesis of the evolutionarily conserved amino acids revealed that these residues play an important role in protein folding. These findings provide a clue to understanding how the repertoire of OBP genes is maintained in a genome under natural selection.

  10. Brucella melitensis global gene expression study provides novel information on growth phase-specific gene regulation with potential insights for understanding Brucella:host initial interactions

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    Garner Harold R

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Brucella spp. are the etiological agents of brucellosis, a zoonotic infectious disease that causes abortion in animals and chronic debilitating illness in humans. Natural Brucella infections occur primarily through an incompletely defined mechanism of adhesion to and penetration of mucosal epithelium. In this study, we characterized changes in genome-wide transcript abundance of the most and the least invasive growth phases of B. melitensis cultures to HeLa cells, as a preliminary approach for identifying candidate pathogen genes involved in invasion of epithelial cells. Results B. melitensis at the late logarithmic phase of growth are more invasive to HeLa cells than mid-logarithmic or stationary growth phases. Microarray analysis of B. melitensis gene expression identified 414 up- and 40 down-regulated genes in late-log growth phase (the most invasive culture compared to the stationary growth phase (the least invasive culture. As expected, the majority of up-regulated genes in late-log phase cultures were those associated with growth, including DNA replication, transcription, translation, intermediate metabolism, energy production and conversion, membrane transport, and biogenesis of the cell envelope and outer membrane; while the down-regulated genes were distributed among several functional categories. Conclusion This Brucella global expression profile study provides novel information on growth phase-specific gene expression. Further characterization of some genes found differentially expressed in the most invasive culture will likely bring new insights into the initial molecular interactions between Brucella and its host.

  11. Understanding volatility correlation behavior with a magnitude cross-correlation function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jun, Woo Cheol; Oh, Gabjin; Kim, Seunghwan

    2006-06-01

    We propose an approach for analyzing the basic relation between correlation properties of the original signal and its magnitude fluctuations by decomposing the original signal into its positive and negative fluctuation components. We use this relation to understand the following phenomenon found in many naturally occurring time series: the magnitude of the signal exhibits long-range correlation, whereas the original signal is short-range correlated. The applications of our approach to heart rate variability signals and high-frequency foreign exchange rates reveal that the difference between the correlation properties of the original signal and its magnitude fluctuations is induced by the time organization structure of the correlation function between the magnitude fluctuations of positive and negative components. We show that this correlation function can be described well by a stretched-exponential function and is related to the nonlinearity and the multifractal structure of the signals.

  12. A systematic survey of expression and function of zebrafish frizzled genes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masataka Nikaido

    Full Text Available Wnt signaling is crucial for the regulation of numerous processes in development. Consistent with this, the gene families for both the ligands (Wnts and receptors (Frizzleds are very large. Surprisingly, while we have a reasonable understanding of the Wnt ligands likely to mediate specific Wnt-dependent processes, the corresponding receptors usually remain to be elucidated. Taking advantage of the zebrafish model's excellent genomic and genetic properties, we undertook a comprehensive analysis of the expression patterns of frizzled (fzd genes in zebrafish. To explore their functions, we focused on testing their requirement in several developmental events known to be regulated by Wnt signaling, convergent extension movements of gastrulation, neural crest induction, and melanocyte specification. We found fourteen distinct fzd genes in the zebrafish genome. Systematic analysis of their expression patterns between 1-somite and 30 hours post-fertilization revealed complex, dynamic and overlapping expression patterns. This analysis demonstrated that only fzd3a, fzd9b, and fzd10 are expressed in the dorsal neural tube at stages corresponding to the timing of melanocyte specification. Surprisingly, however, morpholino knockdown of these, alone or in combination, gave no indication of reduction of melanocytes, suggesting the important involvement of untested fzds or another type of Wnt receptor in this process. Likewise, we found only fzd7b and fzd10 expressed at the border of the neural plate at stages appropriate for neural crest induction. However, neural crest markers were not reduced by knockdown of these receptors. Instead, these morpholino knockdown studies showed that fzd7a and fzd7b work co-operatively to regulate convergent extension movement during gastrulation. Furthermore, we show that the two fzd7 genes function together with fzd10 to regulate epiboly movements and mesoderm differentiation.

  13. Expression of RNA-interference/antisense transgenes by the cognate promoters of target genes is a better gene-silencing strategy to study gene functions in rice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jing; Jiang, Dagang; Zhou, Hai; Li, Feng; Yang, Jiawei; Hong, Laifa; Fu, Xiao; Li, Zhibin; Liu, Zhenlan; Li, Jianming; Zhuang, Chuxiong

    2011-03-03

    Antisense and RNA interference (RNAi)-mediated gene silencing systems are powerful reverse genetic methods for studying gene function. Most RNAi and antisense experiments used constitutive promoters to drive the expression of RNAi/antisense transgenes; however, several reports showed that constitutive promoters were not expressed in all cell types in cereal plants, suggesting that the constitutive promoter systems are not effective for silencing gene expression in certain tissues/organs. To develop an alternative method that complements the constitutive promoter systems, we constructed RNAi and/or antisense transgenes for four rice genes using a constitutive promoter or a cognate promoter of a selected rice target gene and generated many independent transgenic lines. Genetic, molecular, and phenotypic analyses of these RNAi/antisense transgenic rice plants, in comparison to previously-reported transgenic lines that silenced similar genes, revealed that expression of the cognate promoter-driven RNAi/antisense transgenes resulted in novel growth/developmental defects that were not observed in transgenic lines expressing constitutive promoter-driven gene-silencing transgenes of the same target genes. Our results strongly suggested that expression of RNAi/antisense transgenes by cognate promoters of target genes is a better gene-silencing approach to discovery gene function in rice.

  14. Functional traits can improve our understanding of niche- and dispersal-based processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Feng; Xun, Yanhan; Cai, Huiying; Jin, Guangze

    2018-03-01

    Ecologists often determine the relative importance of niche- and dispersal-based processes via variation partitioning based on species composition. Functional traits and their proxies of phylogeny are expected to increase the detection of niche-based processes and reduce the unexplained variation relative to species identity. We collected eight adult tree traits and phylogenetic data of 41 species and employed a phylogenetic fuzzy weighting method to address this issue in a 9-ha temperate forest dynamics plot. We used redundancy analysis to relate species, phylogenetic and functional compositions to environmental (soil resources and topography) and spatial variables. We also performed multi-scaled analyses on spatial variables by adding environment as the covariates to determine if functional traits increase the detection of niche-based processes at broad scales. The functional traits and intraspecific variation of the wood density among ontogenetic stages could dramatically increase the detection of niche-based processes and reduce the unexplained variation relative to species identity. Phylogenetic and functional compositions were mainly driven by total soil P and elevation, while species composition was weakly affected by multiple environmental variables. After controlling for the environment, a larger amount of the compositional variations in seed mass and maximum height were explained by finer-scaled spatial variables, indicating that dispersal processes may be important at fine spatial scales. Our results suggested that considering functional traits and their intraspecific variations could improve our understanding of ecological processes and increase our ability to predict the responses of plants to environmental change.

  15. Understanding the mechanisms of ATPase beta family genes for cellular thermotolerance in crossbred bulls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deb, Rajib; Sajjanar, Basavaraj; Singh, Umesh; Alex, Rani; Raja, T V; Alyethodi, Rafeeque R; Kumar, Sushil; Sengar, Gyanendra; Sharma, Sheetal; Singh, Rani; Prakash, B

    2015-12-01

    Na+/K+-ATPase is an integral membrane protein composed of a large catalytic subunit (alpha), a smaller glycoprotein subunit (beta), and gamma subunit. The beta subunit is essential for ion recognition as well as maintenance of the membrane integrity. Present study was aimed to analyze the expression pattern of ATPase beta subunit genes (ATPase B1, ATPase B2, and ATPase B3) among the crossbred bulls under different ambient temperatures (20-44 °C). The present study was also aimed to look into the relationship of HSP70 with the ATPase beta family genes. Our results demonstrated that among beta family genes, transcript abundance of ATPase B1 and ATPase B2 is significantly (P ATPase Β1, ATPase B2, and ATPase B3 is highly correlated (P ATPase beta family genes for cellular thermotolerance in cattle.

  16. Novel Functional Screen for New Breast Cancer Genes

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    King, Mary-Claire; Welcsh, Piri L

    2004-01-01

    Genetic instability is a hallmark of tumor development. Mechanisms for maintenance of genomic stability are heterogeneous and identification of the genes responsible a critical goal of cancer biologists...

  17. A Novel Functional Screen for New Breast Cancer Genes

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    King, Mary-Claire; Welcsh, Piri L

    2005-01-01

    Genetic instability is a hallmark of tumor development. Mechanisms for maintenance of genomic stability are heterogeneous and identification of the genes responsible a critical goal of cancer biologists...

  18. Epigenetic understanding of gene-environment interactions in psychiatric disorders: a new concept of clinical genetics

    OpenAIRE

    Kubota, Takeo; Miyake, Kunio; Hirasawa, Takae

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Epigenetics is a mechanism that regulates gene expression independently of the underlying DNA sequence, relying instead on the chemical modification of DNA and histone proteins. Although environmental and genetic factors were thought to be independently associated with disorders, several recent lines of evidence suggest that epigenetics bridges these two factors. Epigenetic gene regulation is essential for normal development, thus defects in epigenetics cause various rare congenital ...

  19. Targeting fungal genes by diced siRNAs: a rapid tool to decipher gene function in Aspergillus nidulans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalleda, Natarajaswamy; Naorem, Aruna; Manchikatla, Rajam V

    2013-01-01

    Gene silencing triggered by chemically synthesized small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) has become a powerful tool for deciphering gene function in many eukaryotes. However, prediction and validation of a single siRNA duplex specific to a target gene is often ineffective. RNA interference (RNAi) with synthetic siRNA suffers from lower silencing efficacy, off-target effects and is cost-intensive, especially for functional genomic studies. With the explosion of fungal genomic information, there is an increasing need to analyze gene function in a rapid manner. Therefore, studies were performed in order to investigate the efficacy of gene silencing induced by RNase III-diced-siRNAs (d-siRNA) in model filamentous fungus, Aspergillus nidulans. Stable expression of heterologous reporter gene in A. nidulans eases the examination of a new RNAi-induction route. Hence, we have optimized Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated transformation (AMT) of A. nidulans for stable expression of sGFP gene. This study demonstrates that the reporter GFP gene stably introduced into A. nidulans can be effectively silenced by treatment of GFP-d-siRNAs. We have shown the down-regulation of two endogenous genes, AnrasA and AnrasB of A. nidulans by d-siRNAs. We have also elucidated the function of an uncharacterized Ras homolog, rasB gene, which was found to be involved in hyphal growth and development. Further, silencing potency of d-siRNA was higher as compared to synthetic siRNA duplex, targeting AnrasA. Silencing was shown to be sequence-specific, since expression profiles of other closely related Ras family genes in d-siRNA treated AnrasA and AnrasB silenced lines exhibited no change in gene expression. We have developed and applied a fast, specific and efficient gene silencing approach for elucidating gene function in A. nidulans using d-siRNAs. We have also optimized an efficient AMT in A. nidulans, which is useful for stable integration of transgenes.

  20. Integrating Gene Transcription-Based Biomarkers to Understand Desert Tortoise and Ecosystem Health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowen, Lizabeth; Miles, A Keith; Drake, K Kristina; Waters, Shannon C; Esque, Todd C; Nussear, Kenneth E

    2015-09-01

    Tortoises are susceptible to a wide variety of environmental stressors, and the influence of human disturbances on health and survival of tortoises is difficult to detect. As an addition to current diagnostic methods for desert tortoises, we have developed the first leukocyte gene transcription biomarker panel for the desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii), enhancing the ability to identify specific environmental conditions potentially linked to declining animal health. Blood leukocyte transcript profiles have the potential to identify physiologically stressed animals in lieu of clinical signs. For desert tortoises, the gene transcript profile included a combination of immune or detoxification response genes with the potential to be modified by biological or physical injury and consequently provide information on the type and magnitude of stressors present in the animal's habitat. Blood from 64 wild adult tortoises at three sites in Clark County, NV, and San Bernardino, CA, and from 19 captive tortoises in Clark County, NV, was collected and evaluated for genes indicative of physiological status. Statistical analysis using a priori groupings indicated significant differences among groups for several genes, while multidimensional scaling and cluster analyses of transcription C T values indicated strong differentiation of a large cluster and multiple outlying individual tortoises or small clusters in multidimensional space. These analyses highlight the effectiveness of the gene panel at detecting environmental perturbations as well as providing guidance in determining the health of the desert tortoise.

  1. Integrating gene transcription-based biomarkers to understand desert tortoise and ecosystem health

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowen, Lizabeth; Miles, A. Keith; Drake, Karla K.; Waters, Shannon C.; Esque, Todd C.; Nussear, Kenneth E.

    2015-01-01

    Tortoises are susceptible to a wide variety of environmental stressors, and the influence of human disturbances on health and survival of tortoises is difficult to detect. As an addition to current diagnostic methods for desert tortoises, we have developed the first leukocyte gene transcription biomarker panel for the desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii), enhancing the ability to identify specific environmental conditions potentially linked to declining animal health. Blood leukocyte transcript profiles have the potential to identify physiologically stressed animals in lieu of clinical signs. For desert tortoises, the gene transcript profile included a combination of immune or detoxification response genes with the potential to be modified by biological or physical injury and consequently provide information on the type and magnitude of stressors present in the animal’s habitat. Blood from 64 wild adult tortoises at three sites in Clark County, NV, and San Bernardino, CA, and from 19 captive tortoises in Clark County, NV, was collected and evaluated for genes indicative of physiological status. Statistical analysis using a priori groupings indicated significant differences among groups for several genes, while multidimensional scaling and cluster analyses of transcriptionC T values indicated strong differentiation of a large cluster and multiple outlying individual tortoises or small clusters in multidimensional space. These analyses highlight the effectiveness of the gene panel at detecting environmental perturbations as well as providing guidance in determining the health of the desert tortoise.

  2. Characterization and Functional Analysis of Five MADS-Box B Class Genes Related to Floral Organ Identification in Tagetes erecta.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ye Ai

    Full Text Available According to the floral organ development ABC model, B class genes specify petal and stamen identification. In order to study the function of B class genes in flower development of Tagetes erecta, five MADS-box B class genes were identified and their expression and putative functions were studied. Sequence comparisons and phylogenetic analyses indicated that there were one PI-like gene-TePI, two euAP3-like genes-TeAP3-1 and TeAP3-2, and two TM6-like genes-TeTM6-1 and TeTM6-2 in T. erecta. Strong expression levels of these genes were detected in stamens of the disk florets, but little or no expression was detected in bracts, receptacles or vegetative organs. Yeast hybrid experiments of the B class proteins showed that TePI protein could form a homodimer and heterodimers with all the other four B class proteins TeAP3-1, TeAP3-2, TeTM6-1 and TeTM6-2. No homodimer or interaction was observed between the euAP3 and TM6 clade members. Over-expression of five B class genes of T. erecta in Nicotiana rotundifolia showed that only the transgenic plants of 35S::TePI showed altered floral morphology compared with the non-transgenic line. This study could contribute to the understanding of the function of B class genes in flower development of T. erecta, and provide a theoretical basis for further research to change floral organ structures and create new materials for plant breeding.

  3. Understanding integrated care: a comprehensive conceptual framework based on the integrative functions of primary care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pim P. Valentijn

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Primary care has a central role in integrating care within a health system. However, conceptual ambiguity regarding integrated care hampers a systematic understanding. This paper proposes a conceptual framework that combines the concepts of primary care and integrated care, in order to understand the complexity of integrated care.Methods:  The search method involved a combination of electronic database searches, hand searches of reference lists (snowball method and contacting researchers in the field. The process of synthesizing the literature was iterative, to relate the concepts of primary care and integrated care. First, we identified the general principles of primary care and integrated care. Second, we connected the dimensions of integrated care and the principles of primary care. Finally, to improve content validity we held several meetings with researchers in the field to develop and refine our conceptual framework.Results: The conceptual framework combines the functions of primary care with the dimensions of integrated care. Person-focused and population-based care serve as guiding principles for achieving integration across the care continuum. Integration plays complementary roles on the micro (clinical integration, meso (professional and organisational integration and macro (system integration level. Functional and normative integration ensure connectivity between the levels.Discussion:  The presented conceptual framework is a first step to achieve a better understanding of the inter-relationships among the dimensions of integrated care from a primary care perspective.

  4. Understanding integrated care: a comprehensive conceptual framework based on the integrative functions of primary care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valentijn, Pim P; Schepman, Sanneke M; Opheij, Wilfrid; Bruijnzeels, Marc A

    2013-01-01

    Primary care has a central role in integrating care within a health system. However, conceptual ambiguity regarding integrated care hampers a systematic understanding. This paper proposes a conceptual framework that combines the concepts of primary care and integrated care, in order to understand the complexity of integrated care. The search method involved a combination of electronic database searches, hand searches of reference lists (snowball method) and contacting researchers in the field. The process of synthesizing the literature was iterative, to relate the concepts of primary care and integrated care. First, we identified the general principles of primary care and integrated care. Second, we connected the dimensions of integrated care and the principles of primary care. Finally, to improve content validity we held several meetings with researchers in the field to develop and refine our conceptual framework. The conceptual framework combines the functions of primary care with the dimensions of integrated care. Person-focused and population-based care serve as guiding principles for achieving integration across the care continuum. Integration plays complementary roles on the micro (clinical integration), meso (professional and organisational integration) and macro (system integration) level. Functional and normative integration ensure connectivity between the levels. The presented conceptual framework is a first step to achieve a better understanding of the inter-relationships among the dimensions of integrated care from a primary care perspective.

  5. Biological interpretation of genome-wide association studies using predicted gene functions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pers, Tune H.; Karjalainen, Juha M.; Chan, Yingleong; Westra, Harm-Jan; Wood, Andrew R.; Yang, Jian; Lui, Julian C.; Vedantam, Sailaja; Gustafsson, Stefan; Esko, Tonu; Frayling, Tim; Speliotes, Elizabeth K.; Boehnke, Michael; Raychaudhuri, Soumya; Fehrmann, Rudolf S. N.; Hirschhorn, Joel N.; Franke, Lude; Chu, Audrey Y.; Estrada, Karol; Luan, Jian'an; Kutalik, Zoltán; Amin, Najaf; Buchkovich, Martin L.; Croteau-Chonka, Damien C.; Day, Felix R.; Duan, Yanan; Fall, Tove; Fehrmann, Rudolf; Ferreira, Teresa; Jackson, Anne U.; Karjalainen, Juha; Lo, Ken Sin; Locke, Adam E.; Mägi, Reedik; Mihailov, Evelin; Porcu, Eleonora; Randall, Joshua C.; Scherag, André; Vinkhuyzen, Anna A. E.; Winkler, Thomas W.; Workalemahu, Tsegaselassie; Zhao, Jing Hua; Absher, Devin; Albrecht, Eva; Anderson, Denise; Baron, Jeffrey; Beekman, Marian; Demirkan, Ayse; Ehret, Georg B.; Feenstra, Bjarke; Feitosa, Mary F.; Fischer, Krista; Fraser, Ross M.; Goel, Anuj; Gong, Jian; Justice, E.; Kanoni, Stavroula; Kleber, Marcus E.; Kristiansson, Kati; Lim, Unhee; Lotay, Vaneet; Mangino, Massimo; Mateo Leach, Irene; Medina-Gomez, Carolina; Nalls, Michael A.; Nyholt, Dale R.; Palmer, Cameron D.; Pasko, Dorota; Pechlivanis, Sonali; Prokopenko, Inga; Ried, Janina S.; Ripke, Stephan; Shungin, Dmitry; Stancáková, Alena; Strawbridge, Rona J.; Sung, Yun Ju; Tanaka, Toshiko; Teumer, Alexander; Trompet, Stella; van der Laan, Sander W.; van Setten, Jessica; van Vliet-Ostaptchouk, Jana V.; Wang, Zhaoming; Yengo, Loïc; Zhang, Weihua; Afzal, Uzma; Ärnlöv, Johan; Arscott, Gillian M.; Bandinelli, Stefania; Barrett, Amy; Bellis, Claire; Bennett, Amanda J.; Berne, Christian; Blüher, Matthias; Bolton, Jennifer L.; Böttcher, Yvonne; Boyd, Heather A.; Bruinenberg, Marcel; Buckley, Brendan M.; Buyske, Steven; Caspersen, Ida H.; Chines, Peter S.; Clarke, Robert; Claudi-Boehm, Simone; Cooper, Matthew; Daw, E. Warwick; de Jong, A.; Deelen, Joris; Delgado, Graciela; Denny, Josh C.; Dhonukshe-Rutten, Rosalie; Dimitriou, Maria; Doney, Alex S. F.; Dörr, Marcus; Eklund, Niina; Eury, Elodie; Folkersen, Lasse; Garcia, Melissa E.; Geller, Frank; Giedraitis, Vilmantas; Go, Alan S.; Grallert, Harald; Grammer, Tanja B.; Gräßler, Jürgen; Grönberg, Henrik; de Groot, Lisette C. P. G. M.; Groves, Christopher J.; Haessler, Jeffrey; Haller, Toomas; Hallmans, Goran; Hannemann, Anke; Hartman, Catharina A.; Hassinen, Maija; Hayward, Caroline; Heard-Costa, Nancy L.; Helmer, Quinta; Hemani, Gibran; Henders, Anjali K.; Hillege, Hans L.; Hlatky, Mark A.; Hoffmann, Wolfgang; Hoffmann, Per; Holmen, Oddgeir; Houwing-Duistermaat, Jeanine J.; Illig, Thomas; Isaacs, Aaron; James, Alan L.; Jeff, Janina; Johansen, Berit; Johansson, Åsa; Jolley, Jennifer; Juliusdottir, Thorhildur; Junttila, Juhani; Kho, Abel N.; Kinnunen, Leena; Klopp, Norman; Kocher, Thomas; Kratzer, Wolfgang; Lichtner, Peter; Lind, Lars; Lindström, Jaana; Lobbens, Stéphane; Lorentzon, Mattias; Lu, Yingchang; Lyssenko, Valeriya; Magnusson, Patrik K. E.; Mahajan, Anubha; Maillard, Marc; McArdle, Wendy L.; McKenzie, Colin A.; McLachlan, Stela; McLaren, Paul J.; Menni, Cristina; Merger, Sigrun; Milani, Lili; Moayyeri, Alireza; Monda, Keri L.; Morken, Mario A.; Müller, Gabriele; Müller-Nurasyid, Martina; Musk, Arthur W.; Narisu, Narisu; Nauck, Matthias; Nolte, Ilja M.; Nöthen, Markus M.; Oozageer, Laticia; Pilz, Stefan; Rayner, Nigel W.; Renstrom, Frida; Robertson, Neil R.; Rose, Lynda M.; Roussel, Ronan; Sanna, Serena; Scharnagl, Hubert; Scholtens, Salome; Schumacher, Fredrick R.; Schunkert, Heribert; Scott, Robert A.; Sehmi, Joban; Seufferlein, Thomas; Shi, Jianxin; Silventoinen, Karri; Smit, Johannes H.; Smith, Albert Vernon; Smolonska, Joanna; Stanton, Alice V.; Stirrups, Kathleen; Stott, David J.; Stringham, Heather M.; Sundström, Johan; Swertz, Morris A.; Syvänen, Ann-Christine; Tayo, Bamidele O.; Thorleifsson, Gudmar; Tyrer, Jonathan P.; van Dijk, Suzanne; van Schoor, Natasja M.; van der Velde, Nathalie; van Heemst, Diana; van Oort, Floor V. A.; Vermeulen, Sita H.; Verweij, Niek; Vonk, Judith M.; Waite, Lindsay L.; Waldenberger, Melanie; Wennauer, Roman; Wilkens, Lynne R.; Willenborg, Christina; Wilsgaard, Tom; Wojczynski, Mary K.; Wong, Andrew; Wright, Alan F.; Zhang, Qunyuan; Arveiler, Dominique; Bakker, Stephan J. L.; Beilby, John; Bergman, Richard N.; Bergmann, Sven; Biffar, Reiner; Blangero, John; Boomsma, I.; Bornstein, Stefan R.; Bovet, Pascal; Brambilla, Paolo; Brown, Morris J.; Campbell, Harry; Caulfield, Mark J.; Chakravarti, Aravinda; Collins, Rory; Collins, Francis S.; Crawford, Dana C.; Cupples, L. Adrienne; Danesh, John; de Faire, Ulf; den Ruijter, Hester M.; Erbel, Raimund; Erdmann, Jeanette; Eriksson, Johan G.; Farrall, Martin; Ferrannini, Ele; Ferrières, Jean; Ford, Ian; Forouhi, Nita G.; Forrester, Terrence; Gansevoort, Ron T.; Gejman, Pablo V.; Gieger, Christian; Golay, Alain; Gottesman, Omri; Gudnason, Vilmundur; Gyllensten, Ulf; Haas, David W.; Hall, Alistair S.; Harris, Tamara B.; Hattersley, Andrew T.; Heath, Andrew C.; Hengstenberg, Christian; Hicks, Andrew A.; Hindorff, Lucia A.; Hingorani, Aroon D.; Hofman, Albert; Hovingh, G. Kees; Humphries, Steve E.; Hunt, Steven C.; Hypponen, Elina; Jacobs, Kevin B.; Jarvelin, Marjo-Riitta; Jousilahti, Pekka; Jula, Antti M.; Kaprio, Jaakko; Kastelein, John J. P.; Kayser, Manfred; Kee, Frank; Keinanen-Kiukaanniemi, Sirkka M.; Kiemeney, Lambertus A.; Kooner, Jaspal S.; Kooperberg, Charles; Koskinen, Seppo; Kovacs, Peter; Kraja, Aldi T.; Kumari, Meena; Kuusisto, Johanna; Lakka, Timo A.; Langenberg, Claudia; Le Marchand, Loic; Lehtimäki, Terho; Lupoli, Sara; Madden, Pamela A. F.; Männistö, Satu; Manunta, Paolo; Marette, André; Matise, Tara C.; McKnight, Barbara; Meitinger, Thomas; Moll, Frans L.; Montgomery, Grant W.; Morris, Andrew D.; Morris, Andrew P.; Murray, Jeffrey C.; Nelis, Mari; Ohlsson, Claes; Oldehinkel, Albertine J.; Ong, Ken K.; Ouwehand, Willem H.; Pasterkamp, Gerard; Peters, Annette; Pramstaller, Peter P.; Price, Jackie F.; Qi, Lu; Raitakari, Olli T.; Rankinen, Tuomo; Rao, D. C.; Rice, Treva K.; Ritchie, Marylyn; Rudan, Igor; Salomaa, Veikko; Samani, Nilesh J.; Saramies, Jouko; Sarzynski, Mark A.; Schwarz, Peter E. H.; Sebert, Sylvain; Sever, Peter; Shuldiner, Alan R.; Sinisalo, Juha; Steinthorsdottir, Valgerdur; Stolk, Ronald P.; Tardif, Jean-Claude; Tönjes, Anke; Tremblay, Angelo; Tremoli, Elena; Virtamo, Jarmo; Vohl, Marie-Claude; Amouyel, Philippe; Asselbergs, Folkert W.; Assimes, Themistocles L.; Bochud, Murielle; Boehm, Bernhard O.; Boerwinkle, Eric; Bottinger, Erwin P.; Bouchard, Claude; Cauchi, Stéphane; Chambers, John C.; Chanock, Stephen J.; Cooper, Richard S.; de Bakker, Paul I. W.; Dedoussis, George; Ferrucci, Luigi; Franks, Paul W.; Froguel, Philippe; Groop, Leif C.; Haiman, Christopher A.; Hamsten, Anders; Hayes, M. Geoffrey; Hui, Jennie; Hunter, David J.; Hveem, Kristian; Jukema, J. Wouter; Kaplan, Robert C.; Kivimaki, Mika; Kuh, Diana; Laakso, Markku; Liu, Yongmei; Martin, Nicholas G.; März, Winfried; Melbye, Mads; Moebus, Susanne; Munroe, Patricia B.; Njølstad, Inger; Oostra, Ben A.; Palmer, Colin N. A.; Pedersen, Nancy L.; Perola, Markus; Pérusse, Louis; Peters, Ulrike; Powell, Joseph E.; Power, Chris; Quertermous, Thomas; Rauramaa, Rainer; Reinmaa, Eva; Ridker, Paul M.; Rivadeneira, Fernando; Rotter, Jerome I.; Saaristo, Timo E.; Saleheen, Danish; Schlessinger, David; Slagboom, P. Eline; Snieder, Harold; Spector, Tim D.; Strauch, Konstantin; Stumvoll, Michael; Tuomilehto, Jaakko; Uusitupa, Matti; van der Harst, Pim; Völzke, Henry; Walker, Mark; Wareham, Nicholas J.; Watkins, Hugh; Wichmann, H.-Erich; Wilson, James F.; Zanen, Pieter; Deloukas, Panos; Heid, Iris M.; Lindgren, Cecilia M.; Mohlke, Karen L.; Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur; Barroso, Inês; Fox, Caroline S.; North, Kari E.; Strachan, David P.; Beckmann, Jacques S.; Berndt, Sonja I.; Borecki, Ingrid B.; McCarthy, Mark I.; Metspalu, Andres; Stefansson, Kari; Uitterlinden, André G.; van Duijn, Cornelia M.; Willer, Cristen J.; Price, Alkes L.; Lettre, Guillaume; Loos, Ruth J. F.; Weedon, Michael N.; Ingelsson, Erik; O'Connell, Jeffrey R.; Abecasis, Goncalo R.; Chasman, Daniel I.; Goddard, Michael E.; Visscher, Peter M.; Frayling, Timothy M.

    2015-01-01

    The main challenge for gaining biological insights from genetic associations is identifying which genes and pathways explain the associations. Here we present DEPICT, an integrative tool that employs predicted gene functions to systematically prioritize the most likely causal genes at associated

  6. The potential role of B-function gene involved in floral development ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    use

    2011-11-23

    Nov 23, 2011 ... Key words: Petaloid phenotype, double flowers, B-function gene, Camellia changii Ye, real-time polymerase chain reaction ... theory, genes have been identified in several plants that .... Ct: cycle threshold; Ct,t: cycle threshold of target gene; Ct, r: cycle threshold of 18S rRNA (endogenous control), and the.

  7. A Proteogenomic Approach to Understanding MYC Function in Metastatic Medulloblastoma Tumors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Staal, Jerome A.; Pei, Yanxin; Rood, Brian R.

    2016-01-01

    Brain tumors are the leading cause of cancer-related deaths in children, and medulloblastoma is the most prevalent malignant childhood/pediatric brain tumor. Providing effective treatment for these cancers, with minimal damage to the still-developing brain, remains one of the greatest challenges faced by clinicians. Understanding the diverse events driving tumor formation, maintenance, progression, and recurrence is necessary for identifying novel targeted therapeutics and improving survival of patients with this disease. Genomic copy number alteration data, together with clinical studies, identifies c-MYC amplification as an important risk factor associated with the most aggressive forms of medulloblastoma with marked metastatic potential. Yet despite this, very little is known regarding the impact of such genomic abnormalities upon the functional biology of the tumor cell. We discuss here how recent advances in quantitative proteomic techniques are now providing new insights into the functional biology of these aggressive tumors, as illustrated by the use of proteomics to bridge the gap between the genotype and phenotype in the case of c-MYC-amplified/associated medulloblastoma. These integrated proteogenomic approaches now provide a new platform for understanding cancer biology by providing a functional context to frame genomic abnormalities. PMID:27775567

  8. A Proteogenomic Approach to Understanding MYC Function in Metastatic Medulloblastoma Tumors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jerome A. Staal

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Brain tumors are the leading cause of cancer-related deaths in children, and medulloblastoma is the most prevalent malignant childhood/pediatric brain tumor. Providing effective treatment for these cancers, with minimal damage to the still-developing brain, remains one of the greatest challenges faced by clinicians. Understanding the diverse events driving tumor formation, maintenance, progression, and recurrence is necessary for identifying novel targeted therapeutics and improving survival of patients with this disease. Genomic copy number alteration data, together with clinical studies, identifies c-MYC amplification as an important risk factor associated with the most aggressive forms of medulloblastoma with marked metastatic potential. Yet despite this, very little is known regarding the impact of such genomic abnormalities upon the functional biology of the tumor cell. We discuss here how recent advances in quantitative proteomic techniques are now providing new insights into the functional biology of these aggressive tumors, as illustrated by the use of proteomics to bridge the gap between the genotype and phenotype in the case of c-MYC-amplified/associated medulloblastoma. These integrated proteogenomic approaches now provide a new platform for understanding cancer biology by providing a functional context to frame genomic abnormalities.

  9. Genes affecting β-cell function in type 1 diabetes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fløyel, Tina; Kaur, Simranjeet; Pociot, Flemming

    2015-01-01

    Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is a multifactorial disease resulting from an immune-mediated destruction of the insulin-producing pancreatic β cells. Several environmental and genetic risk factors predispose to the disease. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have identified around 50 genetic regions...... that affect the risk of developing T1D, but the disease-causing variants and genes are still largely unknown. In this review, we discuss the current status of T1D susceptibility loci and candidate genes with focus on the β cell. At least 40 % of the genes in the T1D susceptibility loci are expressed in human...... islets and β cells, where they according to recent studies modulate the β-cell response to the immune system. As most of the risk variants map to noncoding regions of the genome, i.e., promoters, enhancers, intergenic regions, and noncoding genes, their possible involvement in T1D pathogenesis as gene...

  10. Functional Diversity as a New Framework for Understanding the Ecology of an Emerging Generalist Pathogen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Aaron; Guégan, Jean-François; Benbow, M Eric; Williamson, Heather; Small, Pamela L C; Quaye, Charles; Boakye, Daniel; Merritt, Richard W; Gozlan, Rodolphe E

    2016-09-01

    Emerging infectious disease outbreaks are increasingly suspected to be a consequence of human pressures exerted on natural ecosystems. Previously, host taxonomic communities have been used as indicators of infectious disease emergence, and the loss of their diversity has been implicated as a driver of increased presence. The mechanistic details in how such pathogen-host systems function, however, may not always be explained by taxonomic variation or loss. Here we used machine learning and methods based on Gower's dissimilarity to quantify metrics of invertebrate functional diversity, in addition to functional groups and their taxonomic diversity at sites endemic and non-endemic for the model generalist pathogen Mycobacterium ulcerans, the causative agent of Buruli ulcer. Changes in these metrics allowed the rapid categorisation of the ecological niche of the mycobacterium's hosts and the ability to relate specific host traits to its presence in aquatic ecosystems. We found that taxonomic diversity of hosts and overall functional diversity loss and evenness had no bearing on the mycobacterium's presence, or whether the site was in an endemic area. These findings, however, provide strong evidence that generalist environmentally persistent bacteria such as M. ulcerans can be associated with specific functional traits rather than taxonomic groups of organisms, increasing our understanding of emerging disease ecology and origin.

  11. Understanding the Functionality of Human Activity Hotspots from Their Scaling Pattern Using Trajectory Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tao Jia

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Human activity hotspots are the clusters of activity locations in space and time, and a better understanding of their functionality would be useful for urban land use planning and transportation. In this article, using trajectory data, we aim to infer the functionality of human activity hotspots from their scaling pattern in a reliable way. Specifically, a large number of stopping locations are extracted from trajectory data, which are then aggregated into activity hotspots. Activity hotspots are found to display scaling patterns in terms of the sublinear scaling relationships between the number of stopping locations and the number of points of interest (POIs, which indicates economies of scale of human interactions with urban land use. Importantly, this scaling pattern remains stable over time. This finding inspires us to devise an allometric ruler to identify the activity hotspots, whose functionality could be reliably estimated using the stopping locations. Thereafter, a novel Bayesian inference model is proposed to infer their urban functionality, which examines the spatial and temporal information of stopping locations covering 75 days. Experimental results suggest that the functionality of identified activity hotspots are reliably inferred by stopping locations, such as the railway station.

  12. FunGeneNet: a web tool to estimate enrichment of functional interactions in experimental gene sets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tiys, Evgeny S; Ivanisenko, Timofey V; Demenkov, Pavel S; Ivanisenko, Vladimir A

    2018-02-09

    Estimation of functional connectivity in gene sets derived from genome-wide or other biological experiments is one of the essential tasks of bioinformatics. A promising approach for solving this problem is to compare gene networks built using experimental gene sets with random networks. One of the resources that make such an analysis possible is CrossTalkZ, which uses the FunCoup database. However, existing methods, including CrossTalkZ, do not take into account individual types of interactions, such as protein/protein interactions, expression regulation, transport regulation, catalytic reactions, etc., but rather work with generalized types characterizing the existence of any connection between network members. We developed the online tool FunGeneNet, which utilizes the ANDSystem and STRING to reconstruct gene networks using experimental gene sets and to estimate their difference from random networks. To compare the reconstructed networks with random ones, the node permutation algorithm implemented in CrossTalkZ was taken as a basis. To study the FunGeneNet applicability, the functional connectivity analysis of networks constructed for gene sets involved in the Gene Ontology biological processes was conducted. We showed that the method sensitivity exceeds 0.8 at a specificity of 0.95. We found that the significance level of the difference between gene networks of biological processes and random networks is determined by the type of connections considered between objects. At the same time, the highest reliability is achieved for the generalized form of connections that takes into account all the individual types of connections. By taking examples of the thyroid cancer networks and the apoptosis network, it is demonstrated that key participants in these processes are involved in the interactions of those types by which these networks differ from random ones. FunGeneNet is a web tool aimed at proving the functionality of networks in a wide range of sizes of

  13. Entropic effects in formation of chromosome territories: towards understanding of radiation-induced gene translocation frequency

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gudowska-Nowak, Ewa; Ritter, Sylvia; Durante, Marco; Deperas-Standylo, Joanna; Ciesla, Michal

    2012-07-01

    A detailed understanding of structural organization of biological target, such as geometry of an inter-phase chromosome, is an essential prerequisite for gaining deeper insight into relationship between radiation track structure and radiation-induced biological damage [1]. In particular, coupling of biophysical models aimed to describe architecture of chromosomes and their positioning in a cell nucleus [2-4] with models of local distribution of ionizations caused by passing projectiles, are expected to result in more accurate estimates of aberration induction caused by radiation. There is abundant experimental evidence indicating that arrangements of chromosomes in eukaryotic cell nucleus is non-random and has been evolutionary conserved in specific cell types. Moreover, the radial position of a given chromosome territory (CT) within the cell nucleus has been shown to correlate with its size and gene density. Usually it is assumed that chromosomal geometry and positioning result from the action of specific forces acting locally, such as hydrogen bonds, electrostatic, Van der Waals or hydrophobic interactions operating between nucleosomes and within their interiors. However, it is both desirable and instructive to learn to what extend organization of inter-phase chromosomes is affected by nonspecific entropic forces. In this study we report results of a coarse-grained analysis of a chromatin structure modeled by two distinct approaches. In the first method, we adhere to purely statistical analysis of chromatin packing within a chromosome territory. On the basis of the polymer theory, the chromatin fiber of diameter 30nm is approximated by a chain of spheres, each corresponding to about 30 kbp. Random positioning of the center of the domain is repeated for 1000 spherical nuclei. Configuration of the domain is determined by a random packing of a polymer (a string of identical beads) in estimated fraction of space occupied by a chromosome of a given length and mass

  14. Understanding gene sequence variation in the context of transcription regulation in yeast.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irit Gat-Viks

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available DNA sequence polymorphism in a regulatory protein can have a widespread transcriptional effect. Here we present a computational approach for analyzing modules of genes with a common regulation that are affected by specific DNA polymorphisms. We identify such regulatory-linkage modules by integrating genotypic and expression data for individuals in a segregating population with complementary expression data of strains mutated in a variety of regulatory proteins. Our procedure searches simultaneously for groups of co-expressed genes, for their common underlying linkage interval, and for their shared regulatory proteins. We applied the method to a cross between laboratory and wild strains of S. cerevisiae, demonstrating its ability to correctly suggest modules and to outperform extant approaches. Our results suggest that middle sporulation genes are under the control of polymorphism in the sporulation-specific tertiary complex Sum1p/Rfm1p/Hst1p. In another example, our analysis reveals novel inter-relations between Swi3 and two mitochondrial inner membrane proteins underlying variation in a module of aerobic cellular respiration genes. Overall, our findings demonstrate that this approach provides a useful framework for the systematic mapping of quantitative trait loci and their role in gene expression variation.

  15. Functional development of the adult ovine mammary gland--insights from gene expression profiling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paten, Amy M; Duncan, Elizabeth J; Pain, Sarah J; Peterson, Sam W; Kenyon, Paul R; Blair, Hugh T; Dearden, Peter K

    2015-10-05

    The mammary gland is a dynamic organ that undergoes dramatic physiological adaptations during the transition from late pregnancy to lactation. Investigation of the molecular basis of mammary development and function will provide fundamental insights into tissue remodelling as well as a better understanding of milk production and mammary disease. This is important to livestock production systems and human health. Here we use RNA-seq to identify differences in gene expression in the ovine mammary gland between late pregnancy and lactation. Between late pregnancy (135 days of gestation ± 2.4 SD) and lactation (15 days post partum ± 1.27 SD) 13 % of genes in the sheep genome were differentially expressed in the ovine mammary gland. In late pregnancy, cell proliferation, beta-oxidation of fatty acids and translation were identified as key biological processes. During lactation, high levels of milk fat synthesis were mirrored by enrichment of genes associated with fatty acid biosynthesis, transport and lipogenesis. Protein processing in the endoplasmic reticulum was enriched during lactation, likely in support of active milk protein synthesis. Hormone and growth factor signalling and activation of signal transduction pathways, including the JAK-STAT and PPAR pathways, were also differently regulated, indicating key roles for these pathways in functional development of the ovine mammary gland. Changes in the expression of epigenetic regulators, particularly chromatin remodellers, indicate a possible role in coordinating the large-scale transcriptional changes that appear to be required to switch mammary processes from growth and development during late pregnancy to synthesis and secretion of milk during lactation. Coordinated transcriptional regulation of large numbers of genes is required to switch between mammary tissue establishment during late pregnancy, and activation and maintenance of milk production during lactation. Our findings indicate the remarkable

  16. Towards a Stochastic Predictive Understanding of Ecosystem Functioning and Resilience to Environmental Changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pappas, C.

    2017-12-01

    Terrestrial ecosystem processes respond differently to hydrometeorological variability across timescales, and so does our scientific understanding of the underlying mechanisms. Process-based modeling of ecosystem functioning is therefore challenging, especially when long-term predictions are envisioned. Here we analyze the statistical properties of hydrometeorological and ecosystem variability, i.e., the variability of ecosystem process related to vegetation carbon dynamics, from hourly to decadal timescales. 23 extra-tropical forest sites, covering different climatic zones and vegetation characteristics, are examined. Micrometeorological and reanalysis data of precipitation, air temperature, shortwave radiation and vapor pressure deficit are used to describe hydrometeorological variability. Ecosystem variability is quantified using long-term eddy covariance flux data of hourly net ecosystem exchange of CO2 between land surface and atmosphere, monthly remote sensing vegetation indices, annual tree-ring widths and above-ground biomass increment estimates. We find that across sites and timescales ecosystem variability is confined within a hydrometeorological envelope that describes the range of variability of the available resources, i.e., water and energy. Furthermore, ecosystem variability demonstrates long-term persistence, highlighting ecological memory and slow ecosystem recovery rates after disturbances. We derive an analytical model, combining deterministic harmonics and stochastic processes, that represents major mechanisms and uncertainties and mimics the observed pattern of hydrometeorological and ecosystem variability. This stochastic framework offers a parsimonious and mathematically tractable approach for modelling ecosystem functioning and for understanding its response and resilience to environmental changes. Furthermore, this framework reflects well the observed ecological memory, an inherent property of ecosystem functioning that is currently not

  17. The Function and Evolution of the Halloween Genes; the Pathway to the Arthropod Molting Hormone. In Ecdysone, Structures and Functions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gilbert, Lawrence; Rewitz, Kim

    2009-01-01

    The Halloween genes of Drosophila melanogaster were first described in the 1980s using cytogenetic methodology. During the past several years the genes have been cloned, expressed and the gene products have been characterized as cytochrome P450 enzymes (CYPs) and four have been functionalized...... molting hormone we have examined by BLAST search the genome of Daphnia and demonstrated the existence of Halloween gene orthologs in this crustacean, indicating that these genes play an identical role in this class as they do in insects. Further examination of the data bases representing Lepidoptera......, Coleoptera, Hymenoptera and other Diptera allowed the development of a phylogenetic scheme for this gene family and suggests that the Halloween genes and vertebrate steroidogenic P450s originated from common ancestors that were perhaps destined for steroidogenesis, and arose before the deuterostome...

  18. Functional analysis of the epidermal-specific MYB genes CAPRICE and WEREWOLF in Arabidopsis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tominaga, Rumi; Iwata, Mineko; Okada, Kiyotaka; Wada, Takuji

    2007-07-01

    Epidermis cell differentiation in Arabidopsis thaliana is a model system for understanding the developmental end state of plant cells. Two types of MYB transcription factors, R2R3-MYB and R3-MYB, are involved in cell fate determination. To examine the molecular basis of this process, we analyzed the functional relationship of the R2R3-type MYB gene WEREWOLF (WER) and the R3-type MYB gene CAPRICE (CPC). Chimeric constructs made from the R3 MYB regions of WER and CPC used in reciprocal complementation experiments showed that the CPC R3 region cannot functionally substitute for the WER R3 region in the differentiation of hairless cells. However, WER R3 can substantially substitute for CPC R3. There are no differences in yeast interaction assays of WER or WER chimera proteins with GLABRA3 (GL3) or ENHANCER OF GLABRA3 (EGL3). CPC and CPC chimera proteins also have similar activity in preventing GL3 WER and EGL3 WER interactions. Furthermore, we showed by gel mobility shift assays that WER chimera proteins do not bind to the GL2 promoter region. However, a CPC chimera protein, which harbors the WER R3 motif, still binds to the GL2 promoter region.

  19. Functional Analysis of the Epidermal-Specific MYB Genes CAPRICE and WEREWOLF in Arabidopsis[W

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tominaga, Rumi; Iwata, Mineko; Okada, Kiyotaka; Wada, Takuji

    2007-01-01

    Epidermis cell differentiation in Arabidopsis thaliana is a model system for understanding the developmental end state of plant cells. Two types of MYB transcription factors, R2R3-MYB and R3-MYB, are involved in cell fate determination. To examine the molecular basis of this process, we analyzed the functional relationship of the R2R3-type MYB gene WEREWOLF (WER) and the R3-type MYB gene CAPRICE (CPC). Chimeric constructs made from the R3 MYB regions of WER and CPC used in reciprocal complementation experiments showed that the CPC R3 region cannot functionally substitute for the WER R3 region in the differentiation of hairless cells. However, WER R3 can substantially substitute for CPC R3. There are no differences in yeast interaction assays of WER or WER chimera proteins with GLABRA3 (GL3) or ENHANCER OF GLABRA3 (EGL3). CPC and CPC chimera proteins also have similar activity in preventing GL3 WER and EGL3 WER interactions. Furthermore, we showed by gel mobility shift assays that WER chimera proteins do not bind to the GL2 promoter region. However, a CPC chimera protein, which harbors the WER R3 motif, still binds to the GL2 promoter region. PMID:17644729

  20. 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

  1. Alternative Conformational Model of a Seed Protein DeK1 for Better Understanding of Structure-Function Relationship

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Surya Bhushan Kumar

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Understanding of the cell development and differentiation processes in plant seeds in general is poor. One gene, among others, that predominantly regulates the aleurone cell formation, differentiation and specification in seeds is called defective kernel (DeK1 and several cell biology and genetic experiments have unequivocally established this fact. However, the mechanism behind such processes is still unclear and understanding the protein functionality of DeK1 is vital to elucidating its role in endosperm cell development. Only preliminary investigations have been performed for just one domain of the protein in vitro and its functional implications have been highlighted lately. An initial attempt at in silico modeling of the protein has shown promise and necessitated thorough investigation of the protein to help understand structure-function relationship in details thus corroborating experimental findings and laying foundation for further studies. DeK1 sequences in public databases were used as raw material for elaborate computational analysis of the protein. DeK1 is a multi-pass membrane protein with interesting structural features and the present analysis provides an alternative model for DeK1 structure that can help pan both in vitro and in vivo studies. The transmembrane helices were shown to have a number of conserved charged and polar residues that can form salt bridges and help in ligand binding or transmitting an external signal in addition to maintaining structural integrity. The protein possesses a big loop of about 280-300 amino acid residues on the cytoplasmic side of the membrane. It has a number of putative phosphorylation sites, multiple cysteine residues and a high density of charged residues, all of which could be important for protein-protein interaction and signaling pathways. The loop has a nuclear localization propensity as well. The long C-terminal tail of DeK1 with homology to calpain domain may be activated by the big

  2. Interspecies gene transfer as a method for understanding the genetic basis for evolutionary change: Progress, Pitfalls and Prospects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lachezar A. Nikolov

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The recent revolution in high throughput sequencing and associated applications provides excellent opportunities to catalogue variation in DNA sequences and gene expression between species. However, understanding the astonishing diversity of the Tree of Life requires understanding the phenotypic consequences of such variation and identification of those rare genetic changes that are causal to diversity. One way to study the genetic basis for trait diversity is to apply a transgenic approach and introduce genes of interest from a donor into a recipient species. Such interspecies gene transfer (IGT is based on the premise that if a gene is causal to the morphological divergence of the two species, the transfer will endow the recipient with properties of the donor. Extensions of this approach further allow identifying novel loci for the diversification of form and investigating cis- and trans-contributions to morphological evolution. Here we review recent examples from both plant and animal systems that have employed IGT to provide insight into the genetic basis of evolutionary change. We outline the practice of IGT, its methodological strengths and weaknesses, and consider guidelines for its application, emphasizing the importance of phylogenetic distance, character polarity, and life history. We also discuss future perspectives for exploiting IGT in the context of expanding genomic resources in emerging experimental systems and advances in genome editing.

  3. Floral homeotic C function genes repress specific B function genes in the carpel whorl of the basal eudicot California poppy (Eschscholzia californica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yellina Aravinda L

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The floral homeotic C function gene AGAMOUS (AG confers stamen and carpel identity and is involved in the regulation of floral meristem termination in Arabidopsis. Arabidopsis ag mutants show complete homeotic conversions of stamens into petals and carpels into sepals as well as indeterminacy of the floral meristem. Gene function analysis in model core eudicots and the monocots rice and maize suggest a conserved function for AG homologs in angiosperms. At the same time gene phylogenies reveal a complex history of gene duplications and repeated subfunctionalization of paralogs. Results EScaAG1 and EScaAG2, duplicate AG homologs in the basal eudicot Eschscholzia californica show a high degree of similarity in sequence and expression, although EScaAG2 expression is lower than EScaAG1 expression. Functional studies employing virus-induced gene silencing (VIGS demonstrate that knock down of EScaAG1 and 2 function leads to homeotic conversion of stamens into petaloid structures and defects in floral meristem termination. However, carpels are transformed into petaloid organs rather than sepaloid structures. We also show that a reduction of EScaAG1 and EScaAG2 expression leads to significantly increased expression of a subset of floral homeotic B genes. Conclusions This work presents expression and functional analysis of the two basal eudicot AG homologs. The reduction of EScaAG1 and 2 functions results in the change of stamen to petal identity and a transformation of the central whorl organ identity from carpel into petal identity. Petal identity requires the presence of the floral homeotic B function and our results show that the expression of a subset of B function genes extends into the central whorl when the C function is reduced. We propose a model for the evolution of B function regulation by C function suggesting that the mode of B function gene regulation found in Eschscholzia is ancestral and the C-independent regulation as

  4. Understanding Service Composition with Non-functional Properties Using Declarative Model-to-model Transformations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Max Mäuhlhäuser

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Developing applications comprising service composition is a complex task. Therefore, to lower the skill barrier for developers, it is important to describe the problem at hand on an abstract level and not to focus on implementation details. This can be done using declarative programming which allows to describe only the result of the problem (which is what the developer wants rather than the description of the implementation. We therefore use purely declarative model-to-model transformations written in a universal model transformation language which is capable of handling even non functional properties using optimization and mathematical programming. This makes it easier to understand and describe service composition and non-functional properties for the developer.

  5. Sharpening the edges of understanding the structure/function of the LPA1 receptor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murph, Mandi; Nguyen, Giang; Radhakrishna, Harish; Mills, Gordon B.

    2008-01-01

    Since the molecular cloning of the vzg-1/Edg-2/LPA1 gene, studies have attempted to characterize LPA1 receptor functionality into a single categorical role, different from the other Edg-family LPA receptors. The desire to categorize LPA1 function has highlighted its complexity and demonstrated that the LPA1 receptor does not have one absolute function throughout every system. The central nervous system is highly enriched in the LPA1 receptor, suggesting an integral role in neuronal processes. Metastatic and invasive breast cancer also appears to have LPA-mediated LPA1 receptor functions that enhance phenotypes associated with tumorigenesis. LPA1 possesses a number of motifs conserved among G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs): a DRY-like motif, a PDZ domain, Ser/Thr predicted sites of phosphorylation, a dileucine motif, double cysteines in the tail and conserved residues that stabilize structure and determine ligand binding. The third intracellular loop of the LPA1 receptor may be the crux of receptor signaling and attenuation with phosphorylation of Thr-236 potentially a key determinant of basal LPA1 signaling. Mutagenesis data supports the notion that Thr-236 regulates this process since mutating Thr-236 to Ala-236 increased basal and LPA-mediated serum response factor (SRF) signaling activity and Lys-236 further increased this basal signaling. Here we describe progress on defining the major functions of the LPA1 receptor, discuss a context dependent dualistic role as both a negative regulator in cancer and a proto-oncogene, outline its structural components at the molecular amino-acid level and present mutagenesis data on the third intracellular loop of the receptor. PMID:18501205

  6. Functional microarray analysis of nitrogen and carbon cycling genes across an Antarctic latitudinal transect.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Yergeau, E.; Kang, S.; He, Z.; Zhou, J.; Kowalchuk, G.A.

    2007-01-01

    Soil-borne microbial communities were examined via a functional gene microarray approach across a southern polar latitudinal gradient to gain insight into the environmental factors steering soil N- and C-cycling in terrestrial Antarctic ecosystems. The abundance and diversity of functional gene

  7. Proteome Profiling Outperforms Transcriptome Profiling for Coexpression Based Gene Function Prediction

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wang, Jing; Ma, Zihao; Carr, Steven A.; Mertins, Philipp; Zhang, Hui; Zhang, Zhen; Chan, Daniel W.; Ellis, Matthew J. C.; Townsend, R. Reid; Smith, Richard D.; McDermott, Jason E.; Chen, Xian; Paulovich, Amanda G.; Boja, Emily S.; Mesri, Mehdi; Kinsinger, Christopher R.; Rodriguez, Henry; Rodland, Karin D.; Liebler, Daniel C.; Zhang, Bing

    2016-11-11

    Coexpression of mRNAs under multiple conditions is commonly used to infer cofunctionality of their gene products despite well-known limitations of this “guilt-by-association” (GBA) approach. Recent advancements in mass spectrometry-based proteomic technologies have enabled global expression profiling at the protein level; however, whether proteome profiling data can outperform transcriptome profiling data for coexpression based gene function prediction has not been systematically investigated. Here, we address this question by constructing and analyzing mRNA and protein coexpression networks for three cancer types with matched mRNA and protein profiling data from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) and the Clinical Proteomic Tumor Analysis Consortium (CPTAC). Our analyses revealed a marked difference in wiring between the mRNA and protein coexpression networks. Whereas protein coexpression was driven primarily by functional similarity between coexpressed genes, mRNA coexpression was driven by both cofunction and chromosomal colocalization of the genes. Functionally coherent mRNA modules were more likely to have their edges preserved in corresponding protein networks than functionally incoherent mRNA modules. Proteomic data strengthened the link between gene expression and function for at least 75% of Gene Ontology (GO) biological processes and 90% of KEGG pathways. A web application Gene2Net (http://cptac.gene2net.org) developed based on the three protein coexpression networks revealed novel gene-function relationships, such as linking ERBB2 (HER2) to lipid biosynthetic process in breast cancer, identifying PLG as a new gene involved in complement activation, and identifying AEBP1 as a new epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) marker. Our results demonstrate that proteome profiling outperforms transcriptome profiling for coexpression based gene function prediction. Proteomics should be integrated if not preferred in gene function and human disease studies

  8. A new strategy for exploring the hierarchical structure of cancers by adaptively partitioning functional modules from gene expression network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Junmei; Jing, Runyu; Liu, Yuan; Dong, Yongcheng; Wen, Zhining; Li, Menglong

    2016-06-28

    The interactions among the genes within a disease are helpful for better understanding the hierarchical structure of the complex biological system of it. Most of the current methodologies need the information of known interactions between genes or proteins to create the network connections. However, these methods meet the limitations in clinical cancer researches because different cancers not only share the common interactions among the genes but also own their specific interactions distinguished from each other. Moreover, it is still difficult to decide the boundaries of the sub-networks. Therefore, we proposed a strategy to construct a gene network by using the sparse inverse covariance matrix of gene expression data, and divide it into a series of functional modules by an adaptive partition algorithm. The strategy was validated by using the microarray data of three cancers and the RNA-sequencing data of glioblastoma. The different modules in the network exhibited specific functions in cancers progression. Moreover, based on the gene expression profiles in the modules, the risk of death was well predicted in the clustering analysis and the binary classification, indicating that our strategy can be benefit for investigating the cancer mechanisms and promoting the clinical applications of network-based methodologies in cancer researches.

  9. Evolutionary Fates and Dynamic Functionalization of Young Duplicate Genes in Arabidopsis Genomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jun; Tao, Feng; Marowsky, Nicholas C; Fan, Chuanzhu

    2016-09-01

    Gene duplication is a primary means to generate genomic novelties, playing an essential role in speciation and adaptation. Particularly in plants, a high abundance of duplicate genes has been maintained for significantly long periods of evolutionary time. To address the manner in which young duplicate genes were derived primarily from small-scale gene duplication and preserved in plant genomes and to determine the underlying driving mechanisms, we generated transcriptomes to produce the expression profiles of five tissues in Arabidopsis thaliana and the closely related species Arabidopsis lyrata and Capsella rubella Based on the quantitative analysis metrics, we investigated the evolutionary processes of young duplicate genes in Arabidopsis. We determined that conservation, neofunctionalization, and specialization are three main evolutionary processes for Arabidopsis young duplicate genes. We explicitly demonstrated the dynamic functionalization of duplicate genes along the evolutionary time scale. Upon origination, duplicates tend to maintain their ancestral functions; but as they survive longer, they might be likely to develop distinct and novel functions. The temporal evolutionary processes and functionalization of plant duplicate genes are associated with their ancestral functions, dynamic DNA methylation levels, and histone modification abundances. Furthermore, duplicate genes tend to be initially expressed in pollen and then to gain more interaction partners over time. Altogether, our study provides novel insights into the dynamic retention processes of young duplicate genes in plant genomes. © 2016 American Society of Plant Biologists. All rights reserved.

  10. Evolutionary Fates and Dynamic Functionalization of Young Duplicate Genes in Arabidopsis Genomes1[OPEN

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jun; Tao, Feng; Marowsky, Nicholas C.; Fan, Chuanzhu

    2016-01-01

    Gene duplication is a primary means to generate genomic novelties, playing an essential role in speciation and adaptation. Particularly in plants, a high abundance of duplicate genes has been maintained for significantly long periods of evolutionary time. To address the manner in which young duplicate genes were derived primarily from small-scale gene duplication and preserved in plant genomes and to determine the underlying driving mechanisms, we generated transcriptomes to produce the expression profiles of five tissues in Arabidopsis thaliana and the closely related species Arabidopsis lyrata and Capsella rubella. Based on the quantitative analysis metrics, we investigated the evolutionary processes of young duplicate genes in Arabidopsis. We determined that conservation, neofunctionalization, and specialization are three main evolutionary processes for Arabidopsis young duplicate genes. We explicitly demonstrated the dynamic functionalization of duplicate genes along the evolutionary time scale. Upon origination, duplicates tend to maintain their ancestral functions; but as they survive longer, they might be likely to develop distinct and novel functions. The temporal evolutionary processes and functionalization of plant duplicate genes are associated with their ancestral functions, dynamic DNA methylation levels, and histone modification abundances. Furthermore, duplicate genes tend to be initially expressed in pollen and then to gain more interaction partners over time. Altogether, our study provides novel insights into the dynamic retention processes of young duplicate genes in plant genomes. PMID:27485883

  11. Function-driven discovery of disease genes in zebrafish using an integrated genomics big data resource.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shim, Hongseok; Kim, Ji Hyun; Kim, Chan Yeong; Hwang, Sohyun; Kim, Hyojin; Yang, Sunmo; Lee, Ji Eun; Lee, Insuk

    2016-11-16

    Whole exome sequencing (WES) accelerates disease gene discovery using rare genetic variants, but further statistical and functional evidence is required to avoid false-discovery. To complement variant-driven disease gene discovery, here we present function-driven disease gene discovery in zebrafish (Danio rerio), a promising human disease model owing to its high anatomical and genomic similarity to humans. To facilitate zebrafish-based function-driven disease gene discovery, we developed a genome-scale co-functional network of zebrafish genes, DanioNet (www.inetbio.org/danionet), which was constructed by Bayesian integration of genomics big data. Rigorous statistical assessment confirmed the high prediction capacity of DanioNet for a wide variety of human diseases. To demonstrate the feasibility of the function-driven disease gene discovery using DanioNet, we predicted genes for ciliopathies and performed experimental validation for eight candidate genes. We also validated the existence of heterozygous rare variants in the candidate genes of individuals with ciliopathies yet not in controls derived from the UK10K consortium, suggesting that these variants are potentially involved in enhancing the risk of ciliopathies. These results showed that an integrated genomics big data for a model animal of diseases can expand our opportunity for harnessing WES data in disease gene discovery. © The Author(s) 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  12. Beyond Neuronal Activity Markers: Select Immediate Early Genes in Striatal Neuron Subtypes Functionally Mediate Psychostimulant Addiction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramesh Chandra

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Immediate early genes (IEGs were traditionally used as markers of neuronal activity in striatum in response to stimuli including drugs of abuse such as psychostimulants. Early studies using these neuronal activity markers led to important insights in striatal neuron subtype responsiveness to psychostimulants. Such studies have helped identify striatum as a critical brain center for motivational, reinforcement and habitual behaviors in psychostimulant addiction. While the use of IEGs as neuronal activity markers in response to psychostimulants and other stimuli persists today, the functional role and implications of these IEGs has often been neglected. Nonetheless, there is a subset of research that investigates the functional role of IEGs in molecular, cellular and behavioral alterations by psychostimulants through striatal medium spiny neuron (MSN subtypes, the two projection neuron subtypes in striatum. This review article will address and highlight the studies that provide a functional mechanism by which IEGs mediate psychostimulant molecular, cellular and behavioral plasticity through MSN subtypes. Insight into the functional role of IEGs in striatal MSN subtypes could provide improved understanding into addiction and neuropsychiatric diseases affecting striatum, such as affective disorders and compulsive disorders characterized by dysfunctional motivation and habitual behavior.

  13. Making Sense of Abstract Algebra: Exploring Secondary Teachers' Understandings of Inverse Functions in Relation to Its Group Structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wasserman, Nicholas H.

    2017-01-01

    This article draws on semi-structured, task-based interviews to explore secondary teachers' (N = 7) understandings of inverse functions in relation to abstract algebra. In particular, a concept map task is used to understand the degree to which participants, having recently taken an abstract algebra course, situated inverse functions within its…

  14. Single-cell epigenomics: powerful new methods for understanding gene regulation and cell identity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Stephen J; Lee, Heather J; Smallwood, Sébastien A; Kelsey, Gavin; Reik, Wolf

    2016-04-18

    Emerging single-cell epigenomic methods are being developed with the exciting potential to transform our knowledge of gene regulation. Here we review available techniques and future possibilities, arguing that the full potential of single-cell epigenetic studies will be realized through parallel profiling of genomic, transcriptional, and epigenetic information.

  15. Gene prediction validation and functional analysis of redundant pathways

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sønderkær, Mads

    2011-01-01

    have employed a large mRNA-seq data set to improve and validate ab initio predicted gene models. This direct experimental evidence also provides reliable determinations of UTR regions and polyadenylation sites, which are not easily predicted in plants. Furthermore, once an annotated genome sequence...... pathway is transcriptionally active in DM, this is virtually non-existing in RH, possible reflecting the selection for high yield in European breeding programs.......Gene expression by mRNA-Seq In silico gene prediction in eukaryotic genomes is a complicated and error prone process. Nonetheless, a high-quality gene annotation is very important for the usefulness of a genome sequence to the scientific community. In the potato genome sequencing consortium, we...

  16. Functional genomics complements quantitative genetics in identifying disease-gene associations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuanfang Guan

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available An ultimate goal of genetic research is to understand the connection between genotype and phenotype in order to improve the diagnosis and treatment of diseases. The quantitative genetics field has developed a suite of statistical methods to associate genetic loci with diseases and phenotypes, including quantitative trait loci (QTL linkage mapping and genome-wide association studies (GWAS. However, each of these approaches have technical and biological shortcomings. For example, the amount of heritable variation explained by GWAS is often surprisingly small and the resolution of many QTL linkage mapping studies is poor. The predictive power and interpretation of QTL and GWAS results are consequently limited. In this study, we propose a complementary approach to quantitative genetics by interrogating the vast amount of high-throughput genomic data in model organisms to functionally associate genes with phenotypes and diseases. Our algorithm combines the genome-wide functional relationship network for the laboratory mouse and a state-of-the-art machine learning method. We demonstrate the superior accuracy of this algorithm through predicting genes associated with each of 1157 diverse phenotype ontology terms. Comparison between our prediction results and a meta-analysis of quantitative genetic studies reveals both overlapping candidates and distinct, accurate predictions uniquely identified by our approach. Focusing on bone mineral density (BMD, a phenotype related to osteoporotic fracture, we experimentally validated two of our novel predictions (not observed in any previous GWAS/QTL studies and found significant bone density defects for both Timp2 and Abcg8 deficient mice. Our results suggest that the integration of functional genomics data into networks, which itself is informative of protein function and interactions, can successfully be utilized as a complementary approach to quantitative genetics to predict disease risks. All supplementary

  17. Metatranscriptome Sequencing of a Reef-building Coral Elucidates Holobiont Community Gene Functions in Health and Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timberlake, S.; Helbig, T.; Fernando, S.; Penn, K.; Alm, E.; Thompson, F.; Thompson, J. R.

    2012-12-01

    The coral reefs of the Abrolhos Bank of Brazil play a vital ecological role in the health of the Southern Atlantic Ocean, but accelerating rates of disease, particularly white plague, threaten this ecosystem. Thus, an understanding of white plague disease and diagnostic tests for it are urgently needed. The coral animal is associated with a distinct microbiome, a diverse assemblage of eukaryotes, bacteria, and viruses. That these microbes have a great influence on the health of the coral has been long known, however, most of their functions are still mysterious. While recent studies have contrasted healthy and white-plague-associated communities, the causative agents and mechanisms of the disease remain unknown. We collected fragments of healthy and diseased corals, as well as post-disease skeleton, from 12 colonies of the genus Mussismilia, the major component of the reef structure in the Abrolhos bank, and increasingly, a victim of white-plague disease. Fragments were flash-frozen in situ, and prepped for culture-free high throughput sequencing of gene transcripts with the Illumina II-G. While the membership of the microbial communities associated with coral has been previously described, the a coral holobiont community's gene function has, to date, never been assayed by this powerful approach. We designed a bioinformatics pipeline to analyze the short-read data from this complex sample: identifying the functions of genes expressed in the holobiont, and describing the active community's taxonomic composition. We show that gene functions expressed by the coral's bacterial assemblage are distinct from those of the underlying skeleton, and we highlight differences in the disease samples. We find that gene markers for the dissimilatory sulfate reduction pathway more abundant in the disease state, and we further quantify this difference with qPCR. Finally, we report the abundant expression of highly repetitive transcripts in the diseased coral samples, and highlight

  18. Towards an integrated understanding of how micro scale processes shape groundwater ecosystem functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, Susanne I; Cuthbert, Mark O; Schwientek, Marc

    2017-08-15

    Micro scale processes are expected to have a fundamental role in shaping groundwater ecosystems and yet they remain poorly understood and under-researched. In part, this is due to the fact that sampling is rarely carried out at the scale at which microorganisms, and their grazers and predators, function and thus we lack essential information. While set within a larger scale framework in terms of geochemical features, supply with energy and nutrients, and exchange intensity and dynamics, the micro scale adds variability, by providing heterogeneous zones at the micro scale which enable a wider range of redox reactions. Here we outline how understanding micro scale processes better may lead to improved appreciation of the range of ecosystems functions taking place at all scales. Such processes are relied upon in bioremediation and we demonstrate that ecosystem modelling as well as engineering measures have to take into account, and use, understanding at the micro scale. We discuss the importance of integrating faunal processes and computational appraisals in research, in order to continue to secure sustainable water resources from groundwater. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Understanding the Functions of Long Non-Coding RNAs through Their Higher-Order Structures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rui Li

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Although thousands of long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs have been discovered in eukaryotes, very few molecular mechanisms have been characterized due to an insufficient understanding of lncRNA structure. Therefore, investigations of lncRNA structure and subsequent elucidation of the regulatory mechanisms are urgently needed. However, since lncRNA are high molecular weight molecules, which makes their crystallization difficult, obtaining information about their structure is extremely challenging, and the structures of only several lncRNAs have been determined so far. Here, we review the structure–function relationships of the widely studied lncRNAs found in the animal and plant kingdoms, focusing on the principles and applications of both in vitro and in vivo technologies for the study of RNA structures, including dimethyl sulfate-sequencing (DMS-seq, selective 2′-hydroxyl acylation analyzed by primer extension-sequencing (SHAPE-seq, parallel analysis of RNA structure (PARS, and fragmentation sequencing (FragSeq. The aim of this review is to provide a better understanding of lncRNA biological functions by studying them at the structural level.

  20. Understanding the molecular biology of intervertebral disc degeneration and potential gene therapy strategies for regeneration: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sampara, Prasanthi; Banala, Rajkiran Reddy; Vemuri, Satish Kumar; Av, Gurava Reddy; Gpv, Subbaiah

    2018-03-22

    Intervertebral disc degeneration (IVDD) is a multi-factorial process characterized by phenotypic and genotypic changes, which leads to low back pain and disability. Prolonged imbalance between anabolism and catabolism in discs alters their composition resulting in progressive loss of proteoglycans and hydration leading to IVDD. The current managements for IVDD are only able to relieve the symptoms but do not address the underlying pathology of degeneration. Researchers have tried to find out differences between the aging and degeneration of the disc. Intense attempts are in progress for identifying the various factors responsible for disc degeneration, as well as strategies for regeneration. Recently biological approaches have gained thrust in the field of IVDD. The present review illustrates the current understanding of intervertebral disc degeneration and aims to put forth recent advancements in regeneration strategies involving different biological therapies such as growth factor, cell, and gene therapy. The potentials and consequences of these therapies are also extensively discussed along with citing the most suitable method, that is, the gene therapy in detail. Initially, gene therapy was mediated by viral vectors but recent progress has enabled researchers to opt for non-virus-mediated gene therapy methods, which ensure that there are no risks of mutagenicity and infection in target cells. With constant efforts, non-virus-mediated gene therapy may prove to be an extremely powerful tool in treatment of IVDD in future.

  1. Consumer understanding and use of health claims: the case of functional foods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Annunziata, Azzurra; Mariani, Angela; Vecchio, Riccardo

    2014-01-01

    As widely acknowledged functional foods (FFs) may contribute to improve human health due to the presence of specific components useful for their protective action against several diseases. However it is essential that consumers are able to comprehend and assess the properties of FFs health claims play a central role in helping consumers to select among food alternatives, beyond providing protection against unsupported or misleading statements about foods properties. At the same time health claims are the main marketing tool that the food industry could use to differentiate FFs from other products. Clearly, massive investments in research and development are necessary to enter the FF market segment, together with the possibility to protect innovation through patents. Current paper aims to examine factors influencing consumer understanding and use of food health claims on FFs, as well as providing several indications for developers, marketers and policy makers. After a brief review of the literature the results of a quantitative survey conducted online on 650 Italian consumers are presented. Results show that consumer use and understanding of health claims on FFs depend on different variables such as socio-demographic characteristics, knowledge and confidence with nutrition information but also wording and variables related specifically to the product. Furthermore, different segments with a diverse degree of use and understanding of health claims have been identified. Therefore, to boost market growth, more efforts are needed by policy makers and marketers to provide better information on nutrition and health aspects of FF using an approach capable to ensure truthful, significant and clear information. Finally some recent patents related to the FFs market with specific regard to components and/or functionality investigated in the current paper are reviewed.

  2. Comparative nucleic acid transfection efficacy in primary hepatocytes for gene silencing and functional studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Morral Núria

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Primary hepatocytes are the best resource for in vitro studies directed at understanding hepatic processes at the cellular and molecular levels, necessary for novel drug development to treat highly prevalent diseases such as non-alcoholic steatohepatitis, cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes. There is a need to identify simple methods to genetically manipulate primary hepatocytes and conduct functional studies with plasmids, small interfering RNA (siRNA or microRNA (miRNA. New lipofection reagents are available that have the potential to yield higher levels of transfection with reduced toxicity. Findings We have tested several liposome-based transfection reagents used in molecular biology research. We show that transfection efficiency with one of the most recently developed formulations, Metafectene Pro, is high with plasmid DNA (>45% cells as well as double stranded RNA (>90% with siRNA or microRNA. In addition, negligible cytotoxicity was present with all of these nucleic acids, even if cells were incubated with the DNA:lipid complex for 16 hours. To provide the proof of concept that these conditions can be used not only for overexpression of a gene of interest, but also in RNA interference applications, we targeted two liver expressed genes, Sterol Regulatory Element-Binding Protein-1 and Fatty Acid Binding Protein 5 using plasmid-mediated short hairpin RNA expression. In addition, similar transfection conditions were used to optimally deliver siRNA and microRNA. Conclusions We have identified a lipid-based reagent for primary hepatocyte transfection of nucleic acids currently used in molecular biology laboratories. The conditions described here can be used to expedite a large variety of research applications, from gene function studies to microRNA target identification.

  3. Rapid changes in gene expression direct rapid shifts in intestinal form and function in the Burmese python after feeding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrew, Audra L; Card, Daren C; Ruggiero, Robert P; Schield, Drew R; Adams, Richard H; Pollock, David D; Secor, Stephen M; Castoe, Todd A

    2015-05-01

    Snakes provide a unique and valuable model system for studying the extremes of physiological remodeling because of the ability of some species to rapidly upregulate organ form and function upon feeding. The predominant model species used to study such extreme responses has been the Burmese python because of the extreme nature of postfeeding response in this species. We analyzed the Burmese python intestine across a time series, before, during, and after feeding to understand the patterns and timing of changes in gene expression and their relationship to changes in intestinal form and function upon feeding. Our results indicate that >2,000 genes show significant changes in expression in the small intestine following feeding, including genes involved in intestinal morphology and function (e.g., hydrolases, microvillus proteins, trafficking and transport proteins), as well as genes involved in cell division and apoptosis. Extensive changes in gene expression occur surprisingly rapidly, within the first 6 h of feeding, coincide with changes in intestinal morphology, and effectively return to prefeeding levels within 10 days. Collectively, our results provide an unprecedented portrait of parallel changes in gene expression and intestinal morphology and physiology on a scale that is extreme both in the magnitude of changes, as well as in the incredibly short time frame of these changes, with up- and downregulation of expression and function occurring in the span of 10 days. Our results also identify conserved vertebrate signaling pathways that modulate these responses, which may suggest pathways for therapeutic modulation of intestinal function in humans. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.

  4. Understanding human thiol dioxygenase enzymes: structure to function, and biology to pathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarkar, Bibekananda; Kulharia, Mahesh; Mantha, Anil K

    2017-04-01

    Amino acid metabolism is a significant metabolic activity in humans, especially of sulphur-containing amino acids, methionine and cysteine (Cys). Cys is cytotoxic and neurotoxic in nature; hence, mammalian cells maintain a constant intracellular level of Cys. Metabolism of Cys is mainly regulated by two thiol dioxygenases: cysteine dioxygenase (CDO) and 2-aminoethanethiol dioxygenase (ADO). CDO and ADO are the only human thiol dioxygenases reported with a role in Cys metabolism and localized to mitochondria. This metabolic pathway is important in various human disorders, as it is responsible for the synthesis of antioxidant glutathione and is also for the synthesis of hypotaurine and taurine. CDO is the most extensively studied protein, whose high-resolution crystallographic structures have been solved. As compared to CDO, ADO is less studied, even though it has a key role in cysteamine metabolism. To further understand ADO's structure and function, the three-dimensional structures have been predicted from I-TASSER and SWISS-MODEL servers and validated with PROCHECK software. Structural superimposition approach using iPBA web server further confirmed near-identical structures (including active sites) for the predicted protein models of ADO as compared to CDO. In addition, protein-protein interaction and their association in patho-physiology are crucial in understanding protein functions. Both ADO and CDO interacting partner profiles have been presented using STRING database. In this study, we have predicted a 3D model structure for ADO and summarized the biological roles and the pathological consequences which are associated with the altered expression and functioning of ADO and CDO in case of cancer, neurodegenerative disorders and other human diseases. © 2017 The Authors. International Journal of Experimental Pathology © 2017 International Journal of Experimental Pathology.

  5. New genes often acquire male-specific functions but rarely become essential in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kondo, Shu; Vedanayagam, Jeffrey; Mohammed, Jaaved; Eizadshenass, Sogol; Kan, Lijuan; Pang, Nan; Aradhya, Rajaguru; Siepel, Adam; Steinhauer, Josefa; Lai, Eric C

    2017-09-15

    Relatively little is known about the in vivo functions of newly emerging genes, especially in metazoans. Although prior RNAi studies reported prevalent lethality among young gene knockdowns, our phylogenomic analyses reveal that young Drosophila genes are frequently restricted to the nonessential male reproductive system. We performed large-scale CRISPR/Cas9 mutagenesis of "conserved, essential" and "young, RNAi-lethal" genes and broadly confirmed the lethality of the former but the viability of the latter. Nevertheless, certain young gene mutants exhibit defective spermatogenesis and/or male sterility. Moreover, we detected widespread signatures of positive selection on young male-biased genes. Thus, young genes have a preferential impact on male reproductive system function. © 2017 Kondo et al.; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.

  6. A functional gene array for detection of bacterial virulence elements

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jaing, C

    2007-11-01

    We report our development of the first of a series of microarrays designed to detect pathogens with known mechanisms of virulence and antibiotic resistance. By targeting virulence gene families as well as genes unique to specific biothreat agents, these arrays will provide important data about the pathogenic potential and drug resistance profiles of unknown organisms in environmental samples. To validate our approach, we developed a first generation array targeting genes from Escherichia coli strains K12 and CFT073, Enterococcus faecalis and Staphylococcus aureus. We determined optimal probe design parameters for microorganism detection and discrimination, measured the required target concentration, and assessed tolerance for mismatches between probe and target sequences. Mismatch tolerance is a priority for this application, due to DNA sequence variability among members of gene families. Arrays were created using the NimbleGen Maskless Array Synthesizer at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Purified genomic DNA from combinations of one or more of the four target organisms, pure cultures of four related organisms, and environmental aerosol samples with spiked-in genomic DNA were hybridized to the arrays. Based on the success of this prototype, we plan to design further arrays in this series, with the goal of detecting all known virulence and antibiotic resistance gene families in a greatly expanded set of organisms.

  7. Towards the understanding of bull fertility: phenotypic traits description and candidate gene approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Riccardo Negrini

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available We presented the preliminary results of the analysis of semen phenotypic and quality data provided by ANARB along with the result of SNPs discovery on seven candidate genes for male fertility and the ongoing study on mtDNA. The phenotypic data recorded by Computer Assisted Sperm Analyzer of fresh semen for 1,014 bulls were evaluated. The least squared means of volumes were lower than data in literature generally referred to mature bulls, whereas the spermatozoa concentrations, total and progressive motility were satisfactory. As expected in young bulls, the percentage of spermatozoa morphological abnormalities was high. The SNPs discovery in seven candidate genes revealed 30 new SNPs and confirmed the polymorphism in STAT5A gene. The complete sequencing of mtDNA of 48 extreme bulls for semen phenotypic traits revealed 274 mutations. Association between SNPs and semen phenotypes is on going. Our results represent a preliminary step towards the sounding of genetic mechanisms of bull fertility and highlight the paramount importance of reliable phenotypes for association studies.

  8. Text analysis of MEDLINE for discovering functional relationships among genes: evaluation of keyword extraction weighting schemes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Ying; Navathe, Shamkant B; Pivoshenko, Alex; Dasigi, Venu G; Dingledine, Ray; Ciliax, Brian J

    2006-01-01

    One of the key challenges of microarray studies is to derive biological insights from the gene-expression patterns. Clustering genes by functional keyword association can provide direct information about the functional links among genes. However, the quality of the keyword lists significantly affects the clustering results. We compared two keyword weighting schemes: normalised z-score and term frequency-inverse document frequency (TFIDF). Two gene sets were tested to evaluate the effectiveness of the weighting schemes for keyword extraction for gene clustering. Using established measures of cluster quality, the results produced from TFIDF-weighted keywords outperformed those produced from normalised z-score weighted keywords. The optimised algorithms should be useful for partitioning genes from microarray lists into functionally discrete clusters.

  9. Dramatic Increases of Soil Microbial Functional Gene Diversity at the Treeline Ecotone of Changbai Mountain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Congcong; Shi, Yu; Ni, Yingying; Deng, Ye; Van Nostrand, Joy D; He, Zhili; Zhou, Jizhong; Chu, Haiyan

    2016-01-01

    The elevational and latitudinal diversity patterns of microbial taxa have attracted great attention in the past decade. Recently, the distribution of functional attributes has been in the spotlight. Here, we report a study profiling soil microbial communities along an elevation gradient (500-2200 m) on Changbai Mountain. Using a comprehensive functional gene microarray (GeoChip 5.0), we found that microbial functional gene richness exhibited a dramatic increase at the treeline ecotone, but the bacterial taxonomic and phylogenetic diversity based on 16S rRNA gene sequencing did not exhibit such a similar trend. However, the β-diversity (compositional dissimilarity among sites) pattern for both bacterial taxa and functional genes was similar, showing significant elevational distance-decay patterns which presented increased dissimilarity with elevation. The bacterial taxonomic diversity/structure was strongly influenced by soil pH, while the functional gene diversity/structure was significantly correlated with soil dissolved organic carbon (DOC). This finding highlights that soil DOC may be a good predictor in determining the elevational distribution of microbial functional genes. The finding of significant shifts in functional gene diversity at the treeline ecotone could also provide valuable information for predicting the responses of microbial functions to climate change.

  10. Functional Analysis of Genes Comprising the Locus of Heat Resistance in Escherichia coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercer, Ryan; Nguyen, Oanh; Ou, Qixing; McMullen, Lynn; Gänzle, Michael G

    2017-10-15

    The locus of heat resistance (LHR) is a 15- to 19-kb genomic island conferring exceptional heat resistance to organisms in the family Enterobacteriaceae , including pathogenic strains of Salmonella enterica and Escherichia coli The complement of LHR-comprising genes that is necessary for heat resistance and the stress-induced or growth-phase-induced expression of LHR-comprising genes are unknown. This study determined the contribution of the seven LHR-comprising genes yfdX1 GI , yfdX2 , hdeD GI , orf11 , trx GI , kefB , and psiE GI by comparing the heat resistances of E. coli strains harboring plasmid-encoded derivatives of the different LHRs in these genes. (Genes carry a subscript "GI" [genomic island] if an ortholog of the same gene is present in genomes of E. coli ) LHR-encoded heat shock proteins sHSP20, ClpK GI , and sHSP GI are not sufficient for the heat resistance phenotype; YfdX1, YfdX2, and HdeD are necessary to complement the LHR heat shock proteins and to impart a high level of resistance. Deletion of trx GI , kefB , and psiE GI from plasmid-encoded copies of the LHR did not significantly affect heat resistance. The effect of the growth phase and the NaCl concentration on expression from the putative LHR promoter p2 was determined by quantitative reverse transcription-PCR and by a plasmid-encoded p2:GFP promoter fusion. The expression levels of exponential- and stationary-phase E. coli cells were not significantly different, but the addition of 1% NaCl significantly increased LHR expression. Remarkably, LHR expression in E. coli was dependent on a chromosomal copy of evgA In conclusion, this study improved our understanding of the genes required for exceptional heat resistance in E. coli and factors that increase their expression in food. IMPORTANCE The locus of heat resistance (LHR) is a genomic island conferring exceptional heat resistance to several foodborne pathogens. The exceptional level of heat resistance provided by the LHR questions the

  11. Functional Insight From Fruit Flies on Human ADHD Candidate Genes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rohde, Palle Duun; Demontis, Ditte; Arvidson, Sandra Marie Neumann

    2015-01-01

    Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a psychiatric disorder emerging in early childhood with an average prevalence rate of 5% in children and 3.7% in adults. ADHD is characterized by inattention, impulsivity and hyperactivity. This, combined with educational and social dysfunctions......, and increased risk of mental comorbidities, makes ADHD a disorder with high individual and societal costs. We use Drosophila melanogaster as a model to investigate the phenotypic consequences of gene disruption of 14 genes with human orthologs, selected by their proposed contribution to increased risk...... of developing ADHD. We use Minos mutants, where target genes have been disrupted by the Minos transposable element, to test the effect on locomotor activity. By measuring the distance traveled, we find disparity in locomotor activity between control and Minos mutants. Impaired dopamine system underlies...

  12. Functional characterization of cotton genes responsive to Verticillium dahliae through bioinformatics and reverse genetics strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Lian; Zhang, Wenwen; He, Xin; Liu, Min; Zhang, Kun; Shaban, Muhammad; Sun, Longqing; Zhu, Jiachen; Luo, Yijing; Yuan, Daojun; Zhang, Xianlong; Zhu, Longfu

    2014-12-01

    Verticillium wilt causes dramatic cotton yield loss in China. Although some genes or biological processes involved in the interaction between cotton and Verticillium dahliae have been identified, the molecular mechanism of cotton resistance to this disease is still poorly understood. The basic innate immune response for defence is somewhat conserved among plant species to defend themselves in complex environments, which makes it possible to characterize genes involved in cotton immunity based on information from model plants. With the availability of Arabidopsis databases, a data-mining strategy accompanied by virus-induced gene silencing (VIGS) and heterologous expression were adopted in cotton and tobacco, respectively, for global screening and gene function characterization. A total of 232 Arabidopsis genes putatively involved in basic innate immunity were screened as candidate genes, and bioinformatic analysis suggested a role of these genes in the immune response. In total, 38 homologous genes from cotton were singled out to characterize their response to V. dahliae and methyl jasmonate treatment through quantitative real-time PCR. The results revealed that 24 genes were differentially regulated by pathogen inoculation, and most of these genes responded to both Verticillium infection and jasmonic acid stimuli. Furthermore, the efficiency of the strategy was illustrated by the functional identification of six candidate genes via heterologous expression in tobacco or a knock-down approach using VIGS in cotton. Functional categorization of these 24 differentially expressed genes as well as functional analysis suggest that reactive oxygen species, salicylic acid- and jasmonic acid-signalling pathways are involved in the cotton disease resistance response to V. dahliae. Our data demonstrate how information from model plants can allow the rapid translation of information into non-model species without complete genome sequencing, via high-throughput screening and

  13. Understanding the bonding nature of uranyl ion and functionalized graphene: a theoretical study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Qun-Yan; Lan, Jian-Hui; Wang, Cong-Zhi; Xiao, Cheng-Liang; Zhao, Yu-Liang; Wei, Yue-Zhou; Chai, Zhi-Fang; Shi, Wei-Qun

    2014-03-20

    Studying the bonding nature of uranyl ion and graphene oxide (GO) is very important for understanding the mechanism of the removal of uranium from radioactive wastewater with GO-based materials. We have optimized 22 complexes between uranyl ion and GO applying density functional theory (DFT) combined with quasi-relativistic small-core pseudopotentials. The studied oxygen-containing functional groups include hydroxyl, carboxyl, amido, and dimethylformamide. It is observed that the distances between uranium atoms and oxygen atoms of GO (U-OG) are shorter in the anionic GO complexes (uranyl/GO(-/2-)) compared to the neutral GO ones (uranyl/GO). The formation of hydrogen bonds in the uranyl/GO(-/2-) complexes can enhance the binding ability of anionic GO toward uranyl ions. Furthermore, the thermodynamic calculations show that the changes of the Gibbs free energies in solution are relatively more negative for complexation reactions concerning the hydroxyl and carboxyl functionalized anionic GO complexes. Therefore, both the geometries and thermodynamic energies indicate that the binding abilities of uranyl ions toward GO modified by hydroxyl and carboxyl groups are much stronger compared to those by amido and dimethylformamide groups. This study can provide insights for designing new nanomaterials that can efficiently remove radionuclides from radioactive wastewater.

  14. Understanding the complexities of functional ability in Alzheimer's disease: more than just basic and instrumental factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kahle-Wrobleski, Kristin; Coley, Nicola; Lepage, Benoit; Cantet, Christelle; Vellas, Bruno; Andrieu, Sandrine

    2014-05-01

    Dementia of the Alzheimer's type (AD) is defined by both cognitive and functional decline; new criteria allow for identification of milder, non-functionally impaired patients. Understanding loss of autonomy in AD is essential, as later stages represent a significant burden and cost to patients, their families, and society. The purpose of the present analyses was to determine the factor structure of the Alzheimer's Disease Cooperative Study-Activities of Daily Living Scale (ADCS-ADL) in a cohort of AD patients. Baseline ADCS-ADL assessments of 734 AD patients from the PLASA study were included in an exploratory factor analysis (EFA). Because the ADCS-ADL was designed to assess change over time, change from baseline scores over 2 years were also analyzed using an EFA. Factorial solutions were evaluated based on cross-loading, non-loadings, and number of items per factor. Mean age at baseline was 79.3, mean MMSE was 19.8 and 73.3% of participants were female. Baseline data suggested a 4-factor solution that included factors for basic ADLs (BADLs), domestic/household activities, communication/engagement with the environment, and outside activities. The change scores EFA suggested a 2-factor solution of BADLs and instrumental ADLs (IADLs). Distinct factors of IADLs should be considered for further validation as areas of attention to catch early functional decline.

  15. Duplication and relocation of the functional DPY19L2 gene within low copy repeats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheung Joseph

    2006-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Low copy repeats (LCRs are thought to play an important role in recent gene evolution, especially when they facilitate gene duplications. Duplicate genes are fundamental to adaptive evolution, providing substrates for the development of new or shared gene functions. Moreover, silencing of duplicate genes can have an indirect effect on adaptive evolution by causing genomic relocation of functional genes. These changes are theorized to have been a major factor in speciation. Results Here we present a novel example showing functional gene relocation within a LCR. We characterize the genomic structure and gene content of eight related LCRs on human Chromosomes 7 and 12. Two members of a novel transmembrane gene family, DPY19L, were identified in these regions, along with six transcribed pseudogenes. One of these genes, DPY19L2, is found on Chromosome 12 and is not syntenic with its mouse orthologue. Instead, the human locus syntenic to mouse Dpy19l2 contains a pseudogene, DPY19L2P1. This indicates that the ancestral copy of this gene has been silenced, while the descendant copy has remained active. Thus, the functional copy of this gene has been relocated to a new genomic locus. We then describe the expansion and evolution of the DPY19L gene family from a single gene found in invertebrate animals. Ancient duplications have led to multiple homologues in different lineages, with three in fish, frogs and birds and four in mammals. Conclusion Our results show that the DPY19L family has expanded throughout the vertebrate lineage and has undergone recent primate-specific evolution within LCRs.

  16. Expression profiling of hypothetical genes in Desulfovibrio vulgaris leads to improved functional annotation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Elias, Dwayne A.; Mukhopadhyay, Aindrila; Joachimiak, Marcin P.; Drury, Elliott C.; Redding, Alyssa M.; Yen, Huei-Che B.; Fields, Matthew W.; Hazen, Terry C.; Arkin, Adam P.; Keasling, Jay D.; Wall, Judy D.

    2008-10-27

    Hypothetical and conserved hypothetical genes account for>30percent of sequenced bacterial genomes. For the sulfate-reducing bacterium Desulfovibrio vulgaris Hildenborough, 347 of the 3634 genes were annotated as conserved hypothetical (9.5percent) along with 887 hypothetical genes (24.4percent). Given the large fraction of the genome, it is plausible that some of these genes serve critical cellular roles. The study goals were to determine which genes were expressed and provide a more functionally based annotation. To accomplish this, expression profiles of 1234 hypothetical and conserved genes were used from transcriptomic datasets of 11 environmental stresses, complemented with shotgun LC-MS/MS and AMT tag proteomic data. Genes were divided into putatively polycistronic operons and those predicted to be monocistronic, then classified by basal expression levels and grouped according to changes in expression for one or multiple stresses. 1212 of these genes were transcribed with 786 producing detectable proteins. There was no evidence for expression of 17 predicted genes. Except for the latter, monocistronic gene annotation was expanded using the above criteria along with matching Clusters of Orthologous Groups. Polycistronic genes were annotated in the same manner with inferences from their proximity to more confidently annotated genes. Two targeted deletion mutants were used as test cases to determine the relevance of the inferred functional annotations.

  17. Age-Related Gene Expression in the Frontal Cortex Suggests Synaptic Function Changes in Specific Inhibitory Neuron Subtypes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leon French

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Genome-wide expression profiling of the human brain has revealed genes that are differentially expressed across the lifespan. Characterizing these genes adds to our understanding of both normal functions and pathological conditions. Additionally, the specific cell-types that contribute to the motor, sensory and cognitive declines during aging are unclear. Here we test if age-related genes show higher expression in specific neural cell types. Our study leverages data from two sources of murine single-cell expression data and two sources of age-associations from large gene expression studies of postmortem human brain. We used nonparametric gene set analysis to test for age-related enrichment of genes associated with specific cell-types; we also restricted our analyses to specific gene ontology groups. Our analyses focused on a primary pair of single-cell expression data from the mouse visual cortex and age-related human post-mortem gene expression information from the orbitofrontal cortex. Additional pairings that used data from the hippocampus, prefrontal cortex, somatosensory cortex and blood were used to validate and test specificity of our findings. We found robust age-related up-regulation of genes that are highly expressed in oligodendrocytes and astrocytes, while genes highly expressed in layer 2/3 glutamatergic neurons were down-regulated across age. Genes not specific to any neural cell type were also down-regulated, possibly due to the bulk tissue source of the age-related genes. A gene ontology-driven dissection of the cell-type enriched genes highlighted the strong down-regulation of genes involved in synaptic transmission and cell-cell signaling in the Somatostatin (Sst neuron subtype that expresses the cyclin dependent kinase 6 (Cdk6 and in the vasoactive intestinal peptide (Vip neuron subtype expressing myosin binding protein C, slow type (Mybpc1. These findings provide new insights into cell specific susceptibility to normal aging

  18. Integrative mining of traditional Chinese medicine literature and MEDLINE for functional gene networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Xuezhong; Liu, Baoyan; Wu, Zhaohui; Feng, Yi

    2007-10-01

    The amount of biomedical data in different disciplines is growing at an exponential rate. Integrating these significant knowledge sources to generate novel hypotheses for systems biology research is difficult. Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) is a completely different discipline, and is a complementary knowledge system to modern biomedical science. This paper uses a significant TCM bibliographic literature database in China, together with MEDLINE, to help discover novel gene functional knowledge. We present an integrative mining approach to uncover the functional gene relationships from MEDLINE and TCM bibliographic literature. This paper introduces TCM literature (about 50,000 records) as one knowledge source for constructing literature-based gene networks. We use the TCM diagnosis, TCM syndrome, to automatically congregate the related genes. The syndrome-gene relationships are discovered based on the syndrome-disease relationships extracted from TCM literature and the disease-gene relationships in MEDLINE. Based on the bubble-bootstrapping and relation weight computing methods, we have developed a prototype system called MeDisco/3S, which has name entity and relation extraction, and online analytical processing (OLAP) capabilities, to perform the integrative mining process. We have got about 200,000 syndrome-gene relations, which could help generate syndrome-based gene networks, and help analyze the functional knowledge of genes from syndrome perspective. We take the gene network of Kidney-Yang Deficiency syndrome (KYD syndrome) and the functional analysis of some genes, such as CRH (corticotropin releasing hormone), PTH (parathyroid hormone), PRL (prolactin), BRCA1 (breast cancer 1, early onset) and BRCA2 (breast cancer 2, early onset), to demonstrate the preliminary results. The underlying hypothesis is that the related genes of the same syndrome will have some biological functional relationships, and will constitute a functional network. This paper presents

  19. The progeroid gene BubR1 regulates axon myelination and motor function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Chan-Il; Yoo, Ki Hyun; Hussaini, Syed Mohammed Qasim; Jeon, Byeong Tak; Welby, John; Gan, Haiyun; Scarisbrick, Isobel A; Zhang, Zhiguo; Baker, Darren J; van Deursen, Jan M; Rodriguez, Moses; Jang, Mi-Hyeon

    2016-09-12

    Myelination, the process by which oligodendrocytes form the myelin sheath around axons, is key to axonal signal transduction and related motor function in the central nervous system (CNS). Aging is characterized by degenerative changes in the myelin sheath, although the molecular underpinnings of normal and aberrant myelination remain incompletely understood. Here we report that axon myelination and related motor function are dependent on BubR1, a mitotic checkpoint protein that has been linked to progeroid phenotypes when expressed at low levels and healthy lifespan when overabundant. We found that oligodendrocyte progenitor cell proliferation and oligodendrocyte density is markedly reduced in mutant mice with low amounts of BubR1 ( BubR1 H/H mice), causing axonal hypomyelination in both brain and spinal cord. Expression of essential myelin-related genes such as MBP and PLP1 was significantly reduced in these tissues. Consistent with defective myelination, BubR1 H/H mice exhibited various motor deficits, including impaired motor strength, coordination, and balance, irregular gait patterns and reduced locomotor activity. Collectively, these data suggest that BubR1 is a key determinant of oligodendrocyte production and function and provide a molecular entry point to understand age-related degenerative changes in axon myelination.

  20. Functional models for large-scale gene regulation networks: realism and fiction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lagomarsino, Marco Cosentino; Bassetti, Bruno; Castellani, Gastone; Remondini, Daniel

    2009-04-01

    High-throughput experiments are shedding light on the topology of large regulatory networks and at the same time their functional states, namely the states of activation of the nodes (for example transcript or protein levels) in different conditions, times, environments. We now possess a certain amount of information about these two levels of description, stored in libraries, databases and ontologies. A current challenge is to bridge the gap between topology and function, i.e. developing quantitative models aimed at characterizing the expression patterns of large sets of genes. However, approaches that work well for small networks become impossible to master at large scales, mainly because parameters proliferate. In this review we discuss the state of the art of large-scale functional network models, addressing the issue of what can be considered as "realistic" and what the main limitations may be. We also show some directions for future work, trying to set the goals that future models should try to achieve. Finally, we will emphasize the possible benefits in the understanding of biological mechanisms underlying complex multifactorial diseases, and in the development of novel strategies for the description and the treatment of such pathologies.

  1. Identification and functional clustering of genes regulating muscle protein degradation from amongst the known C. elegans muscle mutants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Freya Shephard

    Full Text Available Loss of muscle mass via protein degradation is an important clinical problem but we know little of how muscle protein degradation is regulated genetically. To gain insight our labs developed C. elegans into a model for understanding the regulation of muscle protein degradation. Past studies uncovered novel functional roles for genes affecting muscle and/or involved in signalling in other cells or tissues. Here we examine most of the genes previously identified as the sites of mutations affecting muscle for novel roles in regulating degradation. We evaluate genomic (RNAi knockdown approaches and combine them with our established genetic (mutant and pharmacologic (drugs approaches to examine these 159 genes. We find that RNAi usually recapitulates both organismal and sub-cellular mutant phenotypes but RNAi, unlike mutants, can frequently be used acutely to study gene function solely in differentiated muscle. In the majority of cases where RNAi does not produce organismal level phenotypes, sub-cellular defects can be detected; disrupted proteostasis is most commonly observed. We identify 48 genes in which mutation or RNAi knockdown causes excessive protein degradation; myofibrillar and/or mitochondrial morphologies are also disrupted in 19 of these 48 cases. These 48 genes appear to act via at least three sub-networks to control bulk degradation of protein in muscle cytosol. Attachment to the extracellular matrix regulates degradation via unidentified proteases and affects myofibrillar and mitochondrial morphology. Growth factor imbalance and calcium overload promote lysosome based degradation whereas calcium deficit promotes proteasome based degradation, in both cases myofibrillar and mitochondrial morphologies are largely unaffected. Our results provide a framework for effectively using RNAi to identify and functionally cluster novel regulators of degradation. This clustering allows prioritization of candidate genes/pathways for future

  2. Towards understanding the nitrogen signal transduction for nif gene expression in Klebsiella pneumoniae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glöer, Jens; Thummer, Robert; Ullrich, Heike; Schmitz, Ruth A

    2008-12-01

    In the diazotroph Klebsiella pneumoniae, the nitrogen sensory protein GlnK mediates the cellular nitrogen status towards the NifL/NifA system that regulates transcription of the nitrogen fixation genes in response to ammonium and molecular oxygen. To identify amino acids of GlnK essential for this signal transduction by protein-protein interaction, we performed random point mutagenesis by PCR amplification under conditions of reduced Taq polymerase fidelity. Three thousand two hundred mutated glnK genes were screened to identify those that would no longer complement a K. pneumoniaeDeltaglnK strain for growth under nitrogen fixing conditions. Twenty-four candidates resulting in a Nif(-) phenotype were identified, carrying 1-11 amino acid changes in GlnK. Based on these findings, as well as structural data, several single mutations were introduced into glnK by site-directed mutagenesis, and the Nif phenotype and the respective effects on NifA-mediated nif gene induction was monitored in K. pneumoniae using a chromosomal nifK'-'lacZ fusion. Single amino acid changes resulting in significant nif gene inhibition under nitrogen limiting conditions were located within the highly conserved T-loop (A43G, A49T and N54D), the body of the protein (G87V and K79E) and in the C-terminal region (I100M, R103S, E106Q and D108G). Complex formation analyses between GlnK (wild-type or derivatives) and NifL or NifA in response to 2-oxoglutarate indicated that: (a) besides the T-loop, the C-terminal region of GlnK is essential for the interaction with NifL and NifA and (b) GlnK binds both proteins in the absence of 2-oxoglutarate, whereas, in the presence of 2-oxoglutarate, NifA is released but NifL remains bound to GlnK.

  3. Functional gene silencing mediated by chitosan/siRNA nanocomplexes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ji, A M; Su, D; Che, O; Li, W S; Sun, L; Zhang, Z Y; Xu, F [Department of Pharmaceutical Science, Zhujiang Hospital, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou 510282 (China); Yang, B, E-mail: andrewfxu1998@gmail.co [Department of Chemistry, Indiana University-Bloomington, Bloomington, IN 47405 (United States)

    2009-10-07

    Chitosan/siRNA nanoparticles to knock down FHL2 gene expression were reported in this work. The physicochemical properties such as particle size, surface charge, morphology and complex stability of chitosan nanoparticle-incorporated siRNA were evaluated. Nanoparticles which were formulated with chitosan/siRNA exhibited irregular, lamellar and dendritic structures with a hydrodynamic radius size of about 148 nm and net positive charges with zeta-potential value of 58.5 mV. The knockdown effect of the chitosan/siRNA nanoparticles on gene expression in FHL2 over-expressed human colorectal cancer Lovo cells was investigated. The result showed that FHL2 siRNA formulated within chitosan nanoparticles could knock down about 69.6% FHL2 gene expression, which is very similar to the 68.8% reduced gene expression when siRNA was transfected with liposome Lipofectamine. Western analysis further showed significant FHL-2 protein expression reduced by the chitosan/siRNA nanoparticles. The results also showed that blocking FHL2 expression by siRNA could also inhibit the growth and proliferation of human colorectal cancer Lovo cells. The current results demonstrated that chitosan-based siRNA nanoparticles were a very efficient delivery system for siRNA in vivo as previously reported.

  4. Functional gene silencing mediated by chitosan/siRNA nanocomplexes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, A. M.; Su, D.; Che, O.; Li, W. S.; Sun, L.; Zhang, Z. Y.; Yang, B.; Xu, F.

    2009-10-01

    Chitosan/siRNA nanoparticles to knock down FHL2 gene expression were reported in this work. The physicochemical properties such as particle size, surface charge, morphology and complex stability of chitosan nanoparticle-incorporated siRNA were evaluated. Nanoparticles which were formulated with chitosan/siRNA exhibited irregular, lamellar and dendritic structures with a hydrodynamic radius size of about 148 nm and net positive charges with zeta-potential value of 58.5 mV. The knockdown effect of the chitosan/siRNA nanoparticles on gene expression in FHL2 over-expressed human colorectal cancer Lovo cells was investigated. The result showed that FHL2 siRNA formulated within chitosan nanoparticles could knock down about 69.6% FHL2 gene expression, which is very similar to the 68.8% reduced gene expression when siRNA was transfected with liposome Lipofectamine. Western analysis further showed significant FHL-2 protein expression reduced by the chitosan/siRNA nanoparticles. The results also showed that blocking FHL2 expression by siRNA could also inhibit the growth and proliferation of human colorectal cancer Lovo cells. The current results demonstrated that chitosan-based siRNA nanoparticles were a very efficient delivery system for siRNA in vivo as previously reported.

  5. Molecular characterization and functional analysis of elite genes in ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    The tribe Triticeae includes major cereal crops (bread wheat, durum wheat, triticale, barley and rye), as well as abundant forage and lawn grasses. Wheat and its wild related species possess numerous favourable genes for yield improvement, grain quality enhancement, biotic and abiotic stress resistance, and constitute a ...

  6. Expression and functional analysis of apoptosis-related gene ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The BmICAD gene was obtained from the fifth instar larvae of the silkworm by RTPCR and over-expressed in Escherichia coli as His-tagged fusion proteins. Subcellular localization of the protein indicated that BmICAD was found in the cytoplasm near the nucleus. RNAi assay indicated that the apoptosis rate of Bm5 cells ...

  7. Cloning and functional characterization of a class III chitinase gene ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Analysis of the VvChiF III amino acid sequence showed that this gene corresponds to the Glyco-hydro-18 super family that consisting of a signal peptide with the length of 25 amino acids. Purified VvChiF III showed chitinase activity toward the soluble substrate, glycolchitin and antifungal activity against Botrytis cinerea.

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

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

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

    2009-01-01

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

  9. Cloning and functional characterization of a class III chitinase gene ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    STORAGESEVER

    2008-12-17

    Dec 17, 2008 ... Analysis of the VvChiF III amino acid sequence showed that this gene corresponds to the Glyco-hydro-18 super family that consisting of a ... inducible antimicrobial compounds such as phenols, sulphur compounds, phenolic glycosides, unsaturated lactones, saponins, cyangenic glycosides, glucosinolates,.

  10. Molecular characterization and functional analysis of elite genes in ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    quality enhancement, biotic and abiotic stress resistance, and constitute a giant gene pool for wheat improvement. In recent years, significant .... baking quality, and might be relevant to their participation as gluten elastomers in the .... Further, modifications in. Agp-L can lead to measurable changes in starch biosynthesis.

  11. Using immediate-early genes to map hippocampal subregional functions

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kubík, Štěpán; Miyashita, T.; Guzowski, J. F.

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 14, č. 11 (2007), s. 758-770 ISSN 1072-0502 Grant - others:NIH(US) MH060123 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50110509 Keywords : immediate-early genes * hippocampus * CA3 Subject RIV: FH - Neurology Impact factor: 4.037, year: 2007

  12. Functional gene silencing mediated by chitosan/siRNA nanocomplexes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ji, A M; Su, D; Che, O; Li, W S; Sun, L; Zhang, Z Y; Xu, F; Yang, B

    2009-01-01

    Chitosan/siRNA nanoparticles to knock down FHL2 gene expression were reported in this work. The physicochemical properties such as particle size, surface charge, morphology and complex stability of chitosan nanoparticle-incorporated siRNA were evaluated. Nanoparticles which were formulated with chitosan/siRNA exhibited irregular, lamellar and dendritic structures with a hydrodynamic radius size of about 148 nm and net positive charges with zeta-potential value of 58.5 mV. The knockdown effect of the chitosan/siRNA nanoparticles on gene expression in FHL2 over-expressed human colorectal cancer Lovo cells was investigated. The result showed that FHL2 siRNA formulated within chitosan nanoparticles could knock down about 69.6% FHL2 gene expression, which is very similar to the 68.8% reduced gene expression when siRNA was transfected with liposome Lipofectamine. Western analysis further showed significant FHL-2 protein expression reduced by the chitosan/siRNA nanoparticles. The results also showed that blocking FHL2 expression by siRNA could also inhibit the growth and proliferation of human colorectal cancer Lovo cells. The current results demonstrated that chitosan-based siRNA nanoparticles were a very efficient delivery system for siRNA in vivo as previously reported.

  13. Using Brain Oscillations and Corticospinal Excitability to Understand and Predict Post-Stroke Motor Function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aurore Thibaut

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available What determines motor recovery in stroke is still unknown and finding markers that could predict and improve stroke recovery is a challenge. In this study, we aimed at understanding the neural mechanisms of motor function recovery after stroke using neurophysiological markers by means of cortical excitability (transcranial magnetic stimulation—TMS and brain oscillations (electroencephalography—EEG. In this cross-sectional study, 55 subjects with chronic stroke (62 ± 14 yo, 17 women, 32 ± 42 months post-stroke were recruited in two sites. We analyzed TMS measures (i.e., motor threshold—MT—of the affected and unaffected sides and EEG variables (i.e., power spectrum in different frequency bands and different brain regions of the affected and unaffected hemispheres and their correlation with motor impairment as measured by Fugl-Meyer. Multiple univariate and multivariate linear regression analyses were performed to identify the predictors of good motor function. A significant interaction effect of MT in the affected hemisphere and power in beta bandwidth over the central region for both affected and unaffected hemispheres was found. We identified that motor function positively correlates with beta rhythm over the central region of the unaffected hemisphere, while it negatively correlates with beta rhythm in the affected hemisphere. Our results suggest that cortical activity in the affected and unaffected hemisphere measured by EEG provides new insights on the association between high-frequency rhythms and motor impairment, highlighting the role of an excess of beta in the affected central cortical region in poor motor function in stroke recovery.

  14. Implementation and assessment of a yeast orphan gene research project: involving undergraduates in authentic research experiences and progressing our understanding of uncharacterized open reading frames.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowling, Bethany V; Schultheis, Patrick J; Strome, Erin D

    2016-02-01

    Saccharomyces cerevisiae was the first eukaryotic organism to be sequenced; however, little progress has been made in recent years in furthering our understanding of all open reading frames (ORFs). From October 2012 to May 2015 the number of verified ORFs had only risen from 75.31% to 78%, while the number of uncharacterized ORFs had decreased from 12.8% to 11% (representing > 700 genes still left in this category; http://www.yeastgenome.org/genomesnapshot). Course-based research has been shown to increase student learning while providing experience with real scientific investigation; however, implementation in large, multi-section courses presents many challenges. This study sought to test the feasibility and effectiveness of incorporating authentic research into a core genetics course, with multiple instructors, to increase student learning and progress our understanding of uncharacterized ORFs. We generated a module-based annotation toolkit and utilized easily accessible bioinformatics tools to predict gene function for uncharacterized ORFs within the Saccharomyces Genome Database (SGD). Students were each assigned an uncharacterized ORF, which they annotated using contemporary comparative genomics methodologies, including multiple sequence alignment, conserved domain identification, signal peptide prediction and cellular localization algorithms. Student learning outcomes were measured by quizzes, project reports and presentations, as well as a post-project questionnaire. Our results indicate that the authentic research experience had positive impacts on students' perception of their learning and their confidence to conduct future research. Furthermore, we believe that creation of an online repository and adoption and/or adaptation of this project across multiple researchers and institutions could speed the process of gene function prediction. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  15. Implementation and assessment of a yeast orphan gene research project; involving undergraduates in authentic research experiences and progressing our understanding of uncharacterized open reading frames

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowling, Bethany V.; Schultheis, Patrick J.

    2015-01-01

    Saccharomyces cerevisiae was the first eukaryotic organism to be sequenced, however little progress has been made in recent years in furthering our understanding of all open reading frames (ORFs). From October 2012 to May 2015 the number of verified ORFs has only risen from 75.31% to 78% while the number of uncharacterized ORFs have decreased from 12.8% to 11% (representing more than 700 genes still left in this category) [http://www.yeastgenome.org/genomesnapshot]. Course-based research has been shown to increase student learning while providing experience with real scientific investigation; however, implementation in large, multi-section courses presents many challenges. This study sought to test the feasibility and effectiveness of incorporating authentic research into a core genetics course with multiple instructors to increase student learning and progress our understanding of uncharacterized ORFs. We generated a module-based annotation toolkit and utilized easily accessible bioinformatics tools to predict gene function for uncharacterized ORFs within the Saccharomyces Genome Database (SGD). Students were each assigned an uncharacterized ORF which they annotated using contemporary comparative genomics methodologies including multiple sequence alignment, conserved domain identification, signal peptide prediction and cellular localization algorithms. Student learning outcomes were measured by quizzes, project reports and presentations, as well as a post-project questionnaire. Our results indicate the authentic research experience had positive impacts on student's perception of their learning and their confidence to conduct future research. Furthermore we believe that creation of an online repository and adoption and/or adaptation of this project across multiple researchers and institutions could speed the process of gene function prediction. PMID:26460164

  16. Functional Analysis of Mating Type Genes and Transcriptome Analysis during Fruiting Body Development of Botrytis cinerea

    Science.gov (United States)

    2018-01-01

    ABSTRACT Botrytis cinerea is a plant-pathogenic fungus producing apothecia as sexual fruiting bodies. To study the function of mating type (MAT) genes, single-gene deletion mutants were generated in both genes of the MAT1-1 locus and both genes of the MAT1-2 locus. Deletion mutants in two MAT genes were entirely sterile, while mutants in the other two MAT genes were able to develop stipes but never formed an apothecial disk. Little was known about the reprogramming of gene expression during apothecium development. We analyzed transcriptomes of sclerotia, three stages of apothecium development (primordia, stipes, and apothecial disks), and ascospores by RNA sequencing. Ten secondary metabolite gene clusters were upregulated at the onset of sexual development and downregulated in ascospores released from apothecia. Notably, more than 3,900 genes were differentially expressed in ascospores compared to mature apothecial disks. Among the genes that were upregulated in ascospores were numerous genes encoding virulence factors, which reveals that ascospores are transcriptionally primed for infection prior to their arrival on a host plant. Strikingly, the massive transcriptional changes at the initiation and completion of the sexual cycle often affected clusters of genes, rather than randomly dispersed genes. Thirty-five clusters of genes were jointly upregulated during the onset of sexual reproduction, while 99 clusters of genes (comprising >900 genes) were jointly downregulated in ascospores. These transcriptional changes coincided with changes in expression of genes encoding enzymes participating in chromatin organization, hinting at the occurrence of massive epigenetic regulation of gene expression during sexual reproduction. PMID:29440571

  17. Genes with high penetrance for syndromic and non-syndromic autism typically function within the nucleus and regulate gene expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casanova, Emily L; Sharp, Julia L; Chakraborty, Hrishikesh; Sumi, Nahid Sultana; Casanova, Manuel F

    2016-01-01

    Intellectual disability (ID), autism, and epilepsy share frequent yet variable comorbidities with one another. In order to better understand potential genetic divergence underlying this variable risk, we studied genes responsible for monogenic IDs, grouped according to their autism and epilepsy comorbidities. Utilizing 465 different forms of ID with known molecular origins, we accessed available genetic databases in conjunction with gene ontology (GO) to determine whether the genetics underlying ID diverge according to its comorbidities with autism and epilepsy and if genes highly penetrant for autism or epilepsy share distinctive features that set them apart from genes that confer comparatively variable or no apparent risk. The genetics of ID with autism are relatively enriched in terms associated with nervous system-specific processes and structural morphogenesis. In contrast, we find that ID with highly comorbid epilepsy (HCE) is modestly associated with lipid metabolic processes while ID without autism or epilepsy comorbidity (ID only) is enriched at the Golgi membrane. Highly comorbid autism (HCA) genes, on the other hand, are strongly enriched within the nucleus, are typically involved in regulation of gene expression, and, along with IDs with more variable autism, share strong ties with a core protein-protein interaction (PPI) network integral to basic patterning of the CNS. According to GO terminology, autism-related gene products are integral to neural development. While it is difficult to draw firm conclusions regarding IDs unassociated with autism, it is clear that the majority of HCA genes are tightly linked with general dysregulation of gene expression, suggesting that disturbances to the chronology of neural maturation and patterning may be key in conferring susceptibility to autism spectrum conditions.

  18. Altered glucose homeostasis and hepatic function in obese mice deficient for both kinin receptor genes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos C Barros

    Full Text Available The Kallikrein-Kinin System (KKS has been implicated in several aspects of metabolism, including the regulation of glucose homeostasis and adiposity. Kinins and des-Arg-kinins are the major effectors of this system and promote their effects by binding to two different receptors, the kinin B2 and B1 receptors, respectively. To understand the influence of the KKS on the pathophysiology of obesity and type 2 diabetes (T2DM, we generated an animal model deficient for both kinin receptor genes and leptin (obB1B2KO. Six-month-old obB1B2KO mice showed increased blood glucose levels. Isolated islets of the transgenic animals were more responsive to glucose stimulation releasing greater amounts of insulin, mainly in 3-month-old mice, which was corroborated by elevated serum C-peptide concentrations. Furthermore, they presented hepatomegaly, pronounced steatosis, and increased levels of circulating transaminases. This mouse also demonstrated exacerbated gluconeogenesis during the pyruvate challenge test. The hepatic abnormalities were accompanied by changes in the gene expression of factors linked to glucose and lipid metabolisms in the liver. Thus, we conclude that kinin receptors are important for modulation of insulin secretion and for the preservation of normal glucose levels and hepatic functions in obese mice, suggesting a protective role of the KKS regarding complications associated with obesity and T2DM.

  19. Prenatal corticosterone exposure programs growth, behavior, reproductive function and genes in the chicken

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdelkareem A. Ahmed

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this review paper was to understand the role of prenatal corticosterone exposure on growth, aggressive behavior, reproductive performance and gene expression in the chicken. The phenotype, physiology, reproductive function and behavioral characteristics of an organism are not only influenced by genetic factors, but also by environmental factors that play a critical role in shaping offspring morphology. Exposure to excess glucocorticoids during embryonic development influences offspring growth, physiology and behaviors associated with alterations of hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis and serotonergic system gene expression. Another influential factor for phenotype, physiology and behavioral development is maternal derived steroid hormones that deposit in the egg. In avian species, maternal influences have aroused much attention after the discovery that avian eggs contain a variety of maternal derived steroid hormones. In addition, the environment condition during ontogeny has played a critical role in behavioral development. In avian species, for example laying chicken, high quality mother care produced chicks that were less fearful. Laying hen maternal care is found to reduce cannibalistic pecking phenomenon. Genetic selection and selection experiments will also play a critical role in animals breeding for the housing systems of the future. To optimize animal welfare and to reduce risks factors such as pecking behavior, fundamental approaches are required that merge selection of the optimal genotype with provision of a positive environment for parents and offspring, both throughout ontogeny and later life.

  20. Genetic Adaptation to Climate in White Spruce Involves Small to Moderate Allele Frequency Shifts in Functionally Diverse Genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hornoy, Benjamin; Pavy, Nathalie; Gérardi, Sébastien; Beaulieu, Jean; Bousquet, Jean

    2015-11-11

    Understanding the genetic basis of adaptation to climate is of paramount importance for preserving and managing genetic diversity in plants in a context of climate change. Yet, this objective has been addressed mainly in short-lived model species. Thus, expanding knowledge to nonmodel species with contrasting life histories, such as forest trees, appears necessary. To uncover the genetic basis of adaptation to climate in the widely distributed boreal conifer white spruce (Picea glauca), an environmental association study was conducted using 11,085 single nucleotide polymorphisms representing 7,819 genes, that is, approximately a quarter of the transcriptome.Linear and quadratic regressions controlling for isolation-by-distance, and the Random Forest algorithm, identified several dozen genes putatively under selection, among which 43 showed strongest signals along temperature and precipitation gradients. Most of them were related to temperature. Small to moderate shifts in allele frequencies were observed. Genes involved encompassed a wide variety of functions and processes, some of them being likely important for plant survival under biotic and abiotic environmental stresses according to expression data. Literature mining and sequence comparison also highlighted conserved sequences and functions with angiosperm homologs.Our results are consistent with theoretical predictions that local adaptation involves genes with small frequency shifts when selection is recent and gene flow among populations is high. Accordingly, genetic adaptation to climate in P. glauca appears to be complex, involving many independent and interacting gene functions, biochemical pathways, and processes. From an applied perspective, these results shall lead to specific functional/association studies in conifers and to the development of markers useful for the conservation of genetic resources. © The Author(s) 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular

  1. Using Sandia's Z Machine and Density Functional Theory Simulations to Understand Planetary Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Root, Seth

    2017-06-01

    The use of Z, NIF, and Omega have produced many breakthrough results in high pressure physics. One area that has greatly benefited from these facilities is the planetary sciences. The high pressure behavior of planetary materials has implications for numerous geophysical and planetary processes. The continuing discovery of exosolar super-Earths demonstrates the need for accurate equation of state data to better inform our models of their interior structures. Planetary collision processes, such as the moon-forming giant impact, require understanding planetary materials over a wide-range of pressures and temperatures. Using Z, we examined the shock compression response of some common planetary materials: MgO, Mg2SiO4, and Fe2O3 (hematite). We compare the experimental shock compression measurements with density functional theory (DFT) based quantum molecular dynamics (QMD) simulations. The combination of experiment and theory provides clearer understanding of planetary materials properties at extreme conditions. Sandia National Laboratories is a multi-mission laboratory managed and operated by Sandia Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Lockheed Martin Corporation, for the U.S. Department of Energy's National Nuclear Security Administration under contract DE-AC04-94AL85000.

  2. Metabolomics: An Essential Tool to Understand the Function of Peroxisome Proliferator–Activated Receptor Alpha

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montanez, Jessica E.; Peters, Jeffrey M.; Correll, Jared B.; Gonzalez, Frank J.; Patterson, Andrew D.

    2013-01-01

    The peroxisome proliferator–activated receptor (PPAR) family of nuclear hormone transcription factors (PPARα, PPARβ/δ, and PPARγ) is regulated by a wide array of ligands including natural and synthetic chemicals. PPARs have important roles in control of energy metabolism and are known to influence inflammation, differentiation, carcinogenesis, and chemical toxicity. As such, PPARs have been targeted as therapy for common disorders such as cancer, metabolic syndrome, obesity, and diabetes. The recent application of metabolomics, or the global, unbiased measurement of small molecules found in biofluids, or extracts from cells, tissues, or organisms, has advanced our understanding of the varied and important roles that the PPARs have in normal physiology as well as in pathophysiological processes. Continued development and refinement of analytical platforms, and the application of new bioinformatics strategies, have accelerated the widespread use of metabolomics and have allowed further integration of small molecules into systems biology. Recent studies using metabolomics to understand PPARα function, as well as to identify PPARα biomarkers associated with drug efficacy/toxicity and drug-induced liver injury, will be discussed. PMID:23197196

  3. An improved chemically inducible gene switch that functions in the monocotyledonous plant sugar cane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kinkema, Mark; Geijskes, R Jason; Shand, Kylie; Coleman, Heather D; De Lucca, Paulo C; Palupe, Anthony; Harrison, Mark D; Jepson, Ian; Dale, James L; Sainz, Manuel B

    2014-03-01

    Chemically inducible gene switches can provide precise control over gene expression, enabling more specific analyses of gene function and expanding the plant biotechnology toolkit beyond traditional constitutive expression systems. The alc gene expression system is one of the most promising chemically inducible gene switches in plants because of its potential in both fundamental research and commercial biotechnology applications. However, there are no published reports demonstrating that this versatile gene switch is functional in transgenic monocotyledonous plants, which include some of the most important agricultural crops. We found that the original alc gene switch was ineffective in the monocotyledonous plant sugar cane, and describe a modified alc system that is functional in this globally significant crop. A promoter consisting of tandem copies of the ethanol receptor inverted repeat binding site, in combination with a minimal promoter sequence, was sufficient to give enhanced sensitivity and significantly higher levels of ethanol inducible gene expression. A longer CaMV 35S minimal promoter than was used in the original alc gene switch also substantially improved ethanol inducibility. Treating the roots with ethanol effectively induced the modified alc system in sugar cane leaves and stem, while an aerial spray was relatively ineffective. The extension of this chemically inducible gene expression system to sugar cane opens the door to new opportunities for basic research and crop biotechnology.

  4. Selection upon genome architecture: conservation of functional neighborhoods with changing genes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fátima Al-Shahrour

    Full Text Available An increasing number of evidences show that genes are not distributed randomly across eukaryotic chromosomes, but rather in functional neighborhoods. Nevertheless, the driving force that originated and maintains such neighborhoods is still a matter of controversy. We present the first detailed multispecies cartography of genome regions enriched in genes with related functions and study the evolutionary implications of such clustering. Our results indicate that the chromosomes of higher eukaryotic genomes contain up to 12% of genes arranged in functional neighborhoods, with a high level of gene co-expression, which are consistently distributed in phylogenies. Unexpectedly, neighborhoods with homologous functions are formed by different (non-orthologous genes in different species. Actually, instead of being conserved, functional neighborhoods present a higher degree of synteny breaks than the genome average. This scenario is compatible with the existence of selective pressures optimizing the coordinated transcription of blocks of functionally related genes. If these neighborhoods were broken by chromosomal rearrangements, selection would favor further rearrangements reconstructing other neighborhoods of similar function. The picture arising from this study is a dynamic genomic landscape with a high level of functional organization.

  5. Management with willow short rotation coppice increase the functional gene diversity and functional activity of a heavy metal polluted soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xue, K; van Nostrand, J D; Vangronsveld, J; Witters, N; Janssen, J O; Kumpiene, J; Siebielec, G; Galazka, R; Giagnoni, L; Arenella, M; Zhou, J-Z; Renella, G

    2015-11-01

    We studied the microbial functional diversity, biochemical activity, heavy metals (HM) availability and soil toxicity of Cd, Pb and Zn contaminated soils, kept under grassland or short rotation coppice (SRC) to attenuate the risks associated with HM contamination and restore the soil ecological functions. Soil microbial functional diversity was analyzed by the GeoChip, a functional gene microarray containing probes for genes involved in nutrient cycling, metal resistance and stress response. Soil under SRC showed a higher abundance of microbial genes involved in C, N, P and S cycles and resistance to various HM, higher microbial biomass, respiration and enzyme activity rates, and lower HM availability than the grassland soil. The linkages between functional genes of soil microbial communities and soil chemical properties, HM availability and biochemical activity were also investigated. Soil toxicity and N, P and Pb availability were important factors in shaping the microbial functional diversity, as determined by CCA. We concluded that in HM contaminated soils the microbial functional diversity was positively influenced by SRC management through the reduction of HM availability and soil toxicity increase of nutrient cycling. The presented results can be important in predicting the long term environmental sustainability of plant-based soil remediation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. A systemic gene silencing method suitable for high throughput, reverse genetic analyses of gene function in fern gametophytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tanurdzic Milos

    2004-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Ceratopteris richardii is a useful experimental system for studying gametophyte development and sexual reproduction in plants. However, few tools for cloning mutant genes or disrupting gene function exist for this species. The feasibility of systemic gene silencing as a reverse genetics tool was examined in this study. Results Several DNA constructs targeting a Ceratopteris protoporphyrin IX magnesium chelatase (CrChlI gene that is required for chlorophyll biosynthesis were each introduced into young gametophytes by biolistic delivery. Their transient expression in individual cells resulted in a colorless cell phenotype that affected most cells of the mature gametophyte, including the meristem and gametangia. The colorless phenotype was associated with a 7-fold decrease in the abundance of the endogenous transcript. While a construct designed to promote the transient expression of a CrChlI double stranded, potentially hairpin-forming RNA was found to be the most efficient in systemically silencing the endogenous gene, a plasmid containing the CrChlI cDNA insert alone was sufficient to induce silencing. Bombarded, colorless hermaphroditic gametophytes produced colorless embryos following self-fertilization, demonstrating that the silencing signal could be transmitted through gametogenesis and fertilization. Bombardment of young gametophytes with constructs targeting the Ceratopteris filamentous temperature sensitive (CrFtsZ and uroporphyrin dehydrogenase (CrUrod genes also produced the expected mutant phenotypes. Conclusion A method that induces the systemic silencing of target genes in the Ceratopteris gametophyte is described. It provides a simple, inexpensive and rapid means to test the functions of genes involved in gametophyte development, especially those involved in cellular processes common to all plants.

  7. Functional Insight From Fruit Flies on Human ADHD Candidate Genes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rohde, Palle Duun; Demontis, Ditte; Arvidson, Sandra Marie Neumann

    2015-01-01

    the majority of ADHD symptoms, and effective treatment is achieved with amphetamines. We fed flies with either 1.5 mg/ml dexamphetamine dissolved in 5% w/w sucrose or a 5% w/w sucrose solution. Treatment with dexamphetamine increased activity of controls and some Minos lines, and decreased activity levels......Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a psychiatric disorder emerging in early childhood with an average prevalence rate of 5% in children and 3.7% in adults. ADHD is characterized by inattention, impulsivity and hyperactivity. This, combined with educational and social dysfunctions......, and increased risk of mental comorbidities, makes ADHD a disorder with high individual and societal costs. We use Drosophila melanogaster as a model to investigate the phenotypic consequences of gene disruption of 14 genes with human orthologs, selected by their proposed contribution to increased risk...

  8. Functional Analysis of the Fusarielin Biosynthetic Gene Cluster

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aida Droce

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Fusarielins are polyketides with a decalin core produced by various species of Aspergillus and Fusarium. Although the responsible gene cluster has been identified, the biosynthetic pathway remains to be elucidated. In the present study, members of the gene cluster were deleted individually in a Fusarium graminearum strain overexpressing the local transcription factor. The results suggest that a trans-acting enoyl reductase (FSL5 assists the polyketide synthase FSL1 in biosynthesis of a polyketide product, which is released by hydrolysis by a trans-acting thioesterase (FSL2. Deletion of the epimerase (FSL3 resulted in accumulation of an unstable compound, which could be the released product. A novel compound, named prefusarielin, accumulated in the deletion mutant of the cytochrome P450 monooxygenase FSL4. Unlike the known fusarielins from Fusarium, this compound does not contain oxygenized decalin rings, suggesting that FSL4 is responsible for the oxygenation.

  9. Gait and Cognition: A Complementary Approach to Understanding Brain Function and the Risk of Falling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montero-Odasso, Manuel; Verghese, Joe; Beauchet, Olivier; Hausdorff, Jeffrey M.

    2012-01-01

    Until recently, clinicians and researchers have performed gait assessments and cognitive assessments separately when evaluating older adults. Increasing evidence from clinical practice, epidemiological studies, and clinical trials shows that gait and cognition are inter-related in older adults. Quantifiable alterations in gait among older adults are associated with falls, dementia, and disability. At the same time, emerging evidence indicates that early disturbances in cognitive processes such as attention, executive function, and working memory are associated with slower gait and gait instability during single and dual-task testing, and that these cognitive disturbances assist in the prediction of future mobility loss, falls, and progression to dementia. This paper reviews the importance of the gait-cognition inter-relationship in aging and presents evidence that gait assessments can provide a window into the understanding of cognitive function and dysfunctions, and fall risk in older people in clinical practice. To this end, the benefits of dual-task gait assessments (e.g., walking while performing an attention-demanding task) as a marker of fall risk are summarized. Further, we also present a potential complementary approach for reducing the risk of falls by improving certain aspects of cognition through both non-pharmacological and pharmacological treatments. Untangling the relationship between early gait disturbances and early cognitive changes may be helpful for identifying older adults at higher risk of experiencing mobility decline, falls and the progression to dementia. PMID:23110433

  10. Gait and cognition: a complementary approach to understanding brain function and the risk of falling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montero-Odasso, Manuel; Verghese, Joe; Beauchet, Olivier; Hausdorff, Jeffrey M

    2012-11-01

    Until recently, clinicians and researchers have performed gait assessments and cognitive assessments separately when evaluating older adults, but increasing evidence from clinical practice, epidemiological studies, and clinical trials shows that gait and cognition are interrelated in older adults. Quantifiable alterations in gait in older adults are associated with falls, dementia, and disability. At the same time, emerging evidence indicates that early disturbances in cognitive processes such as attention, executive function, and working memory are associated with slower gait and gait instability during single- and dual-task testing and that these cognitive disturbances assist in the prediction of future mobility loss, falls, and progression to dementia. This article reviews the importance of the interrelationship between gait and cognition in aging and presents evidence that gait assessments can provide a window into the understanding of cognitive function and dysfunction and fall risk in older people in clinical practice. To this end, the benefits of dual-task gait assessments (e.g., walking while performing an attention-demanding task) as a marker of fall risk are summarized. A potential complementary approach for reducing the risk of falls by improving certain aspects of cognition through nonpharmacological and pharmacological treatments is also presented. Untangling the relationship between early gait disturbances and early cognitive changes may be helpful in identifying older adults at risk of experiencing mobility decline, falls, and progression to dementia. © 2012, Copyright the Authors Journal compilation © 2012, The American Geriatrics Society.

  11. Understanding the Role of Negative Emotions in Adult Learning and Achievement: A Social Functional Perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna D. Rowe

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available The role of emotions in adult learning and achievement has received increasing attention in recent years. However, much of the emphasis has been on test anxiety, rather than the wider spectrum of negative emotions such as sadness, grief, boredom and anger. This paper reports findings of a qualitative study exploring the experience and functionality of negative emotions at university. Thirty-six academic staff and students from an Australian university were interviewed about emotional responses to a range of learning events. Data analysis was informed by a prototype approach to emotion research. Four categories of discrete negative emotions (anger, sadness, fear, boredom were considered by teachers and students to be especially salient in learning, with self-conscious emotions (guilt, embarrassment, shame mentioned by more students than staff. While negative emotions were frequently viewed as detrimental to motivation, performance and learning, they were also construed under some circumstances as beneficial. The findings are discussed in relation to the value of social functional approaches for a better understanding of the diverse roles of negative emotions in learning and achievement.

  12. Understanding the Role of Negative Emotions in Adult Learning and Achievement: A Social Functional Perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rowe, Anna D; Fitness, Julie

    2018-02-20

    The role of emotions in adult learning and achievement has received increasing attention in recent years. However, much of the emphasis has been on test anxiety, rather than the wider spectrum of negative emotions such as sadness, grief, boredom and anger. This paper reports findings of a qualitative study exploring the experience and functionality of negative emotions at university. Thirty-six academic staff and students from an Australian university were interviewed about emotional responses to a range of learning events. Data analysis was informed by a prototype approach to emotion research. Four categories of discrete negative emotions (anger, sadness, fear, boredom) were considered by teachers and students to be especially salient in learning, with self-conscious emotions (guilt, embarrassment, shame) mentioned by more students than staff. While negative emotions were frequently viewed as detrimental to motivation, performance and learning, they were also construed under some circumstances as beneficial. The findings are discussed in relation to the value of social functional approaches for a better understanding of the diverse roles of negative emotions in learning and achievement.

  13. Functional characterization of diverse ring-hydroxylating oxygenases and induction of complex aromatic catabolic gene clusters in Sphingobium sp. PNB

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pratick Khara

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Sphingobium sp. PNB, like other sphingomonads, has multiple ring-hydroxylating oxygenase (RHO genes. Three different fosmid clones have been sequenced to identify the putative genes responsible for the degradation of various aromatics in this bacterial strain. Comparison of the map of the catabolic genes with that of different sphingomonads revealed a similar arrangement of gene clusters that harbors seven sets of RHO terminal components and a sole set of electron transport (ET proteins. The presence of distinctly conserved amino acid residues in ferredoxin and in silico molecular docking analyses of ferredoxin with the well characterized terminal oxygenase components indicated the structural uniqueness of the ET component in sphingomonads. The predicted substrate specificities, derived from the phylogenetic relationship of each of the RHOs, were examined based on transformation of putative substrates and their structural homologs by the recombinant strains expressing each of the oxygenases and the sole set of available ET proteins. The RHO AhdA1bA2b was functionally characterized for the first time and was found to be capable of transforming ethylbenzene, propylbenzene, cumene, p-cymene and biphenyl, in addition to a number of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. Overexpression of aromatic catabolic genes in strain PNB, revealed by real-time PCR analyses, is a way forward to understand the complex regulation of degradative genes in sphingomonads.

  14. Functional gene array-based analysis of microbial community structure in groundwaters with a gradient of contaminant levels

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Waldron, P.J.; Wu, L.; Van Nostrand, J.D.; Schadt, C.W.; Watson, D.B.; Jardine, P.M.; Palumbo, A.V.; Hazen, T.C.; Zhou, J.

    2009-06-15

    To understand how contaminants affect microbial community diversity, heterogeneity, and functional structure, six groundwater monitoring wells from the Field Research Center of the U.S. Department of Energy Environmental Remediation Science Program (ERSP; Oak Ridge, TN), with a wide range of pH, nitrate, and heavy metal contamination were investigated. DNA from the groundwater community was analyzed with a functional gene array containing 2006 probes to detect genes involved in metal resistance, sulfate reduction, organic contaminant degradation, and carbon and nitrogen cycling. Microbial diversity decreased in relation to the contamination levels of the wells. Highly contaminated wells had lower gene diversity but greater signal intensity than the pristine well. The microbial composition was heterogeneous, with 17-70% overlap between different wells. Metal-resistant and metal-reducing microorganisms were detected in both contaminated and pristine wells, suggesting the potential for successful bioremediation of metal-contaminated groundwaters. In addition, results of Mantel tests and canonical correspondence analysis indicate that nitrate, sulfate, pH, uranium, and technetium have a significant (p < 0.05) effect on microbial community structure. This study provides an overall picture of microbial community structure in contaminated environments with functional gene arrays by showing that diversity and heterogeneity can vary greatly in relation to contamination.

  15. Gene expression and physiological responses associated to stomatal functioning in Rosa×hybrida grown at high relative air humidity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carvalho, Dália R A; Vasconcelos, Marta W; Lee, Sangseok; Koning-Boucoiran, Carole F S; Vreugdenhil, Dick; Krens, Frans A; Heuvelink, Ep; Carvalho, Susana M P

    2016-12-01

    High relative air humidity (RH≥85%) during growth disturbs stomatal functioning, resulting in excessive water loss in conditions of high evaporative demand. We investigated the expression of nine abscisic acid (ABA)-related genes (involved in ABA biosynthesis, oxidation and conjugation) and two non-ABA related genes (involved in the water stress response) aiming to better understand the mechanisms underlying contrasting stomatal functioning in plants grown at high RH. Four rose genotypes with contrasting sensitivity to high RH (one sensitive, one tolerant and two intermediate) were grown at moderate (62±3%) or high (89±4%) RH. The sensitive genotype grown at high RH showed a significantly higher stomatal conductance (g s ) and water loss in response to closing stimuli as compared to the other genotypes. Moreover, high RH reduced the leaf ABA concentration and its metabolites to a greater extent in the sensitive genotype as compared to the tolerant one. The large majority of the studied genes had a relevant role on stomatal functioning (NCED1, UGT75B2, BG2, OST1, ABF3 and Rh-APX) while two others showed a minor contribution (CYP707A3 and BG1) and AAO3, CYP707A1 and DREB1B did not contribute to the tolerance trait. These results show that multiple genes form a highly complex regulatory network acting together towards the genotypic tolerance to high RH. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. A genetic map of Blumeria graminis based on functional genes, avirulence genes, and molecular markers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pedersen, Carsten; Rasmussen, Søren W; Giese, Henriette

    2002-04-01

    A genetic map of the powdery mildew fungus, Blumeria graminis f. sp. hordei, an obligate biotrophic pathogen of barley, is presented. The linkage analysis was conducted on 81 segregating haploid progeny isolates from a cross between 2 isolates differing in seven avirulence genes. A total of 359 loci were mapped, comprising 182 amplified fragment length polymorphism markers, 168 restriction fragment length polymorphism markers including 42 LTR-retrotransposon loci and 99 expressed sequence tags (ESTs), all the seven avirulence genes, and a marker closely linked to the mating type gene. The markers are distributed over 34 linkage groups covering a total of 2114 cM. Five avirulence genes were found to be linked and mapped in clusters of three and two, and two were unlinked. The Avr(a6) gene was found to be closely linked to markers suitable for a map-based cloning approach. A linkage between ESTs allowed us to demonstrate examples of synteny between genes in B. graminis and Neurospora crassa.

  17. Loss of genes implicated in gastric function during platypus evolution

    OpenAIRE

    Ordoñez, Gonzalo R; Hillier, LaDeana W; Warren, Wesley C; Grützner, Frank; López-Otín, Carlos; Puente, Xose S

    2008-01-01

    Background The duck-billed platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus) belongs to the mammalian subclass Prototheria, which diverged from the Theria line early in mammalian evolution. The platypus genome sequence provides a unique opportunity to illuminate some aspects of the biology and evolution of these animals. Results We show that several genes implicated in food digestion in the stomach have been deleted or inactivated in platypus. Comparison with other vertebrate genomes revealed that the main...

  18. Inhibitory Monoclonal Antibodies against Mouse Proteases Raised in Gene-Deficient Mice Block Proteolytic Functions in vivo

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Ida K; Rasch, Morten G; Ingvarsen, Signe

    2012-01-01

    Identification of targets for cancer therapy requires the understanding of the in vivo roles of proteins, which can be derived from studies using gene-targeted mice. An alternative strategy is the administration of inhibitory monoclonal antibodies (mAbs), causing acute disruption of the target...... protein function(s). This approach has the advantage of being a model for therapeutic targeting. mAbs for use in mouse models can be obtained through immunization of gene-deficient mice with the autologous protein. Such mAbs react with both species-specific epitopes and epitopes conserved between species....... mAbs against proteins involved in extracellular proteolysis, including plasminogen activators urokinase plasminogen activator (uPA), tissue-type plasminogen activator (tPA), their inhibitor PAI-1, the uPA receptor (uPAR), two matrix metalloproteinases (MMP9 and MMP14), as well as the collagen...

  19. An Updated Functional Annotation of Protein-Coding Genes in the Cucumber Genome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongtao Song

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Background: Although the cucumber reference genome and its annotation were published several years ago, the functional annotation of predicted genes, particularly protein-coding genes, still requires further improvement. In general, accurately determining orthologous relationships between genes allows for better and more robust functional assignments of predicted genes. As one of the most reliable strategies, the determination of collinearity information may facilitate reliable orthology inferences among genes from multiple related genomes. Currently, the identification of collinear segments has mainly been based on conservation of gene order and orientation. Over the course of plant genome evolution, various evolutionary events have disrupted or distorted the order of genes along chromosomes, making it difficult to use those genes as genome-wide markers for plant genome comparisons.Results: Using the localized LASTZ/MULTIZ analysis pipeline, we aligned 15 genomes, including cucumber and other related angiosperm plants, and identified a set of genomic segments that are short in length, stable in structure, uniform in distribution and highly conserved across all 15 plants. Compared with protein-coding genes, these conserved segments were more suitable for use as genomic markers for detecting collinear segments among distantly divergent plants. Guided by this set of identified collinear genomic segments, we inferred 94,486 orthologous protein-coding gene pairs (OPPs between cucumber and 14 other angiosperm species, which were used as proxies for transferring functional terms to cucumber genes from the annotations of the other 14 genomes. In total, 10,885 protein-coding genes were assigned Gene Ontology (GO terms which was nearly 1,300 more than results collected in Uniprot-proteomic database. Our results showed that annotation accuracy would been improved compared with other existing approaches.Conclusions: In this study, we provided an

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  1. The utility of simple mathematical models in understanding gene regulatory dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mackey, Michael C.; Santillán, Moisés; Tyran-Kamińska, Marta; Zeron, Eduardo S.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract In this review, we survey work that has been carried out in the attempts of biomathematicians to understand the dynamic behaviour of simple bacterial operons starting with the initial work of the 1960’s. We concentrate on the simplest of situations, discussing both repressible and inducible systems and then turning to concrete examples related to the biology of the lactose and tryptophan operons. We conclude with a brief discussion of the role of both extrinsic noise and so-called intrinsic noise in the form of translational and/or transcriptional bursting. PMID:25402755

  2. Understanding recovery: changes in the relationships of the International Classification of Functioning (ICF) components over time.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, A M; Perruccio, A V; Ibrahim, S; Hogg-Johnson, S; Wong, R; Badley, E M

    2012-12-01

    The International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health framework describes human functioning through body structure and function, activity and participation in the context of a person's social and physical environment. This work tested the temporal relationships of these components. Our hypotheses were: 1) there would be associations among physical impairment, activity limitations and participation restrictions within time; 2) prior status of a component would be associated with future status; 3) prior status of one component would influence status of a second component (e.g. prior activity limitations would be associated with current participation restrictions); and, 4) the magnitude of the within time relationships of the components would vary over time. Participants from Canada with primary hip or knee joint replacement (n = 931), an intervention with predictable improvement in pain and disability, completed standardized outcome measures pre-surgery and five times in the first year post-surgery. These included physical impairment (pain), activity limitations and participation restrictions. ICF component relationships were evaluated cross-sectionally and longitudinally using path analysis adjusting for age, sex, BMI, hip vs. knee, low back pain and mood. All component scores improved significantly over time. The path coefficients supported the hypotheses in that both within and across time, physical impairment was associated with activity limitation and activity limitation was associated with participation restriction; prior status and change in a component were associated with current status in another component; and, the magnitude of the path coefficients varied over time with stronger associations among components to three months post surgery than later in recovery with the exception of the association between impairment and participation restrictions which was of similar magnitude at all times. This work enhances understanding of the

  3. Differentiation of Bifidobacterium longum subspecies longum and infantis by quantitative PCR using functional gene targets

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Blair Lawley

    2017-05-01

    characteristic functional genes. It can be used as an identification aid for isolates of bifidobacteria, as well as in determining prevalence and abundance of the subspecies in feces. The method should thus be useful in ecological studies of the infant gut microbiota during early life where an understanding of the ecology of bifidobacterial species may be important in developing interventions to promote infant health.

  4. Drosophila fushi tarazu. a gene on the border of homeotic function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Löhr, U; Yussa, M; Pick, L

    2001-09-18

    Hox genes specify cell fate and regional identity during animal development. These genes are present in evolutionarily conserved clusters thought to have arisen by gene duplication and divergence. Most members of the Drosophila Hox complex (HOM-C) have homeotic functions. However, a small number of HOM-C genes, such as the segmentation gene fushi tarazu (ftz), have nonhomeotic functions. If these genes arose from a homeotic ancestor, their functional properties must have changed significantly during the evolution of modern Drosophila. Here, we have asked how Drosophila ftz evolved from an ancestral homeotic gene to obtain a novel function in segmentation. We expressed Ftz proteins at various developmental stages to assess their potential to regulate segmentation and to generate homeotic transformations. Drosophila Ftz protein has lost the inherent ability to mediate homeosis and functions exclusively in segmentation pathways. In contrast, Ftz from the primitive insect Tribolium (Tc-Ftz) has retained homeotic potential, generating homeotic transformations in larvae and adults and retaining the ability to repress homothorax, a hallmark of homeotic genes. Similarly, Schistocerca Ftz (Sg-Ftz) caused homeotic transformations of antenna toward leg. Primitive Ftz orthologs have moderate segmentation potential, reflected by weak interactions with the segmentation-specific cofactor Ftz-F1. Thus, Ftz orthologs represent evolutionary intermediates that have weak segmentation potential but retain the ability to act as homeotic genes. ftz evolved from an ancestral homeotic gene as a result of changes in both regulation of expression and specific alterations in the protein-coding region. Studies of ftz orthologs from primitive insects have provided a "snap-shot" view of the progressive evolution of a Hox protein as it took on segmentation function and lost homeotic potential. We propose that the specialization of Drosophila Ftz for segmentation resulted from loss and gain of

  5. Understandings of psychological difficulties in people with the Huntington's disease gene and their expectations of psychological therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theed, Rachael; Eccles, Fiona J R; Simpson, Jane

    2017-10-03

    This study sought to investigate how people who had tested positive for the Huntington's disease (HD) gene mutation understood and experienced psychological distress and their expectations of psychological therapy. A qualitative methodology was adopted involving semi-structured interviews and interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA). A total of nine participants (five women and four men) who had opted to engage in psychological therapy were recruited and interviewed prior to the start of this particular psychological therapeutic intervention. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and analysed using IPA whereby themes were analysed within and across transcripts and classified into superordinate themes. Three superordinate themes were developed: Attributing psychological distress to HD: 'you're blaming everything on that now'; Changes in attributions of distress over time: 'in the past you'd just get on with it'; and Approaching therapy with an open mind, commitment, and hope: 'a light at the end of the tunnel'. Understandings of psychological distress in HD included biological and psychological explanations, with both often being accepted simultaneously by the same individual but with biomedical accounts generally dominating. Individual experience seemed to reflect a dynamic process whereby people's understanding and experience of their distress changed over time. Psychological therapy was accepted as a positive alternative to medication, providing people with HD with hope that their psychological well-being could be enhanced. People with the Huntington's disease gene mutation have largely biomedical understandings of their psychological distress. This largely biomedical understanding does not, however, preclude them for being interested in the potential gains resulting from psychological therapy. The mechanisms of psychological therapy should be explained in detail before therapy and explored along with current attributions of distress. © 2017 The British

  6. The structure and function of tRNA genes of higher eukaryotes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kubli, E

    1981-01-15

    The most recent findings concerning the structure and function of tRNA genes of higher eukaryotes are discussed in an exemplary way. The tRNA genes of higher organisms are either dispersed or clustered at different sites of the genome. Clusters contain tRNA genes oriented in both directions and on both strands of the DNA with spacers of various length inbetween. Some genes contain intervening sequences close to the 3' side of the anticodon. The primary transcription product possesses a 5' leader and a 3' trailer sequence which are removed by several maturation steps in a strict temporal and spacial order. Internal transcription control regions (promotors) are located at the 5' and 3' ends of the mature tRNA coding section of the tRNA gene. External sequences modulating the efficiency of the expression are present at the immediate 5' ends of the genes. Transfer RNA genes are located nonrandomly in the nucleosomes.

  7. Processes of fungal proteome evolution and gain of function: gene duplication and domain rearrangement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cohen-Gihon, Inbar; Nussinov, Ruth; Sharan, Roded

    2011-01-01

    During evolution, organisms have gained functional complexity mainly by modifying and improving existing functioning systems rather than creating new ones ab initio. Here we explore the interplay between two processes which during evolution have had major roles in the acquisition of new functions: gene duplication and protein domain rearrangements. We consider four possible evolutionary scenarios: gene families that have undergone none of these event types; only gene duplication; only domain rearrangement, or both events. We characterize each of the four evolutionary scenarios by functional attributes. Our analysis of ten fungal genomes indicates that at least for the fungi clade, species significantly appear to gain complexity by gene duplication accompanied by the expansion of existing domain architectures via rearrangements. We show that paralogs gaining new domain architectures via duplication tend to adopt new functions compared to paralogs that preserve their domain architectures. We conclude that evolution of protein families through gene duplication and domain rearrangement is correlated with their functional properties. We suggest that in general, new functions are acquired via the integration of gene duplication and domain rearrangements rather than each process acting independently

  8. New gene functions in megakaryopoiesis and platelet formation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gieger, Christian; Radhakrishnan, Aparna; Cvejic, Ana; Tang, Weihong; Porcu, Eleonora; Pistis, Giorgio; Serbanovic-Canic, Jovana; Elling, Ulrich; Goodall, Alison H.; Labrune, Yann; Lopez, Lorna M.; Maegi, Reedik; Meacham, Stuart; Okada, Yukinori; Pirastu, Nicola; Sorice, Rossella; Teumer, Alexander; Voss, Katrin; Zhang, Weihua; Ramirez-Solis, Ramiro; Bis, Joshua C.; Ellinghaus, David; Goegele, Martin; Hottenga, Jouke-Jan; Langenberg, Claudia; Kovacs, Peter; O'Reilly, Paul F.; Shin, So-Youn; Esko, Toenu; Hartiala, Jaana; Kanoni, Stavroula; Murgia, Federico; Parsa, Afshin; Stephens, Jonathan; van der Harst, Pim; van der Schoot, C. Ellen; Allayee, Hooman; Attwood, Antony; Balkau, Beverley; Bastardot, Francois; Basu, Saonli; Baumeister, Sebastian E.; Biino, Ginevra; Bomba, Lorenzo; Bonnefond, Amelie; Cambien, Francois; Chambers, John C.; Cucca, Francesco; D'Adamo, Pio; Davies, Gail; de Boer, Rudolf A.; de Geus, Eco J. C.; Doering, Angela; Elliott, Paul; Erdmann, Jeanette; Evans, David M.; Falchi, Mario; Feng, Wei; Folsom, Aaron R.; Frazer, Ian H.; Gibson, Quince D.; Glazer, Nicole L.; Hammond, Chris; Hartikainen, Anna-Liisa; Heckbert, Susan R.; Hengstenberg, Christian; Hersch, Micha; Illig, Thomas; Loos, Ruth J. F.; Jolley, Jennifer; Khaw, Kay Tee; Kuehnel, Brigitte; Kyrtsonis, Marie-Christine; Lagou, Vasiliki; Lloyd-Jones, Heather; Lumley, Thomas; Mangino, Massimo; Maschio, Andrea; Mateo Leach, Irene; McKnight, Barbara; Memari, Yasin; Mitchell, Braxton D.; Montgomery, Grant W.; Nakamura, Yusuke; Nauck, Matthias; Navis, Gerjan; Noethlings, Ute; Nolte, Ilja M.; Porteous, David J.; Pouta, Anneli; Pramstaller, Peter P.; Pullat, Janne; Ring, Susan M.; Rotter, Jerome I.; Ruggiero, Daniela; Ruokonen, Aimo; Sala, Cinzia; Samani, Nilesh J.; Sambrook, Jennifer; Schlessinger, David; Schreiber, Stefan; Schunkert, Heribert; Scott, James; Smith, Nicholas L.; Snieder, Harold; Starr, John M.; Stumvoll, Michael; Takahashi, Atsushi; Tang, W. H. Wilson; Taylor, Kent; Tenesa, Albert; Thein, Swee Lay; Toenjes, Anke; Uda, Manuela; Ulivi, Sheila; van Veldhuisen, Dirk J.; Visscher, Peter M.; Voelker, Uwe; Wichmann, H-Erich; Wiggins, Kerri L.; Willemsen, Gonneke; Yang, Tsun-Po; Zhao, Jing Hua; Zitting, Paavo; Bradley, John R.; Dedoussis, George V.; Gasparini, Paolo; Hazen, Stanley L.; Metspalu, Andres; Pirastu, Mario; Shuldiner, Alan R.; van Pelt, L. Joost; Zwaginga, Jaap-Jan; Boomsma, Dorret I.; Deary, Ian J.; Franke, Andre; Froguel, Philippe; Ganesh, Santhi K.; Jarvelin, Marjo-Riitta; Martin, Nicholas G.; Meisinger, Christa; Psaty, Bruce M.; Spector, Timothy D.; Wareham, Nicholas J.; Akkerman, Jan-Willem N.; Ciullo, Marina; Deloukas, Panos; Greinacher, Andreas; Jupe, Steve; Kamatani, Naoyuki; Khadake, Jyoti; Kooner, Jaspal S.; Penninger, Josef; Prokopenko, Inga; Stemple, Derek; Toniolo, Daniela; Wernisch, Lorenz; Sanna, Serena; Hicks, Andrew A.; Rendon, Augusto; Ferreira, Manuel A.; Ouwehand, Willem H.; Soranzo, Nicole

    2011-01-01

    Platelets are the second most abundant cell type in blood and are essential for maintaining haemostasis. Their count and volume are tightly controlled within narrow physiological ranges, but there is only limited understanding of the molecular processes controlling both traits. Here we carried out a

  9. Novel Florfenicol and Chloramphenicol Resistance Gene Discovered in Alaskan Soil by Using Functional Metagenomics▿

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lang, Kevin S.; Anderson, Janet M.; Schwarz, Stefan; Williamson, Lynn; Handelsman, Jo; Singer, Randall S.

    2010-01-01

    Functional metagenomics was used to search for florfenicol resistance genes in libraries of cloned DNA isolated from Alaskan soil. A gene that mediated reduced susceptibility to florfenicol was identified and designated pexA. The predicted PexA protein showed a structure similar to that of efflux pumps of the major facilitator superfamily. PMID:20543056

  10. Novel florfenicol and chloramphenicol resistance gene discovered in Alaskan soil by using functional metagenomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lang, Kevin S; Anderson, Janet M; Schwarz, Stefan; Williamson, Lynn; Handelsman, Jo; Singer, Randall S

    2010-08-01

    Functional metagenomics was used to search for florfenicol resistance genes in libraries of cloned DNA isolated from Alaskan soil. A gene that mediated reduced susceptibility to florfenicol was identified and designated pexA. The predicted PexA protein showed a structure similar to that of efflux pumps of the major facilitator superfamily.

  11. Functional network analysis of genes differentially expressed during xylogenesis in soc1ful woody Arabidopsis plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davin, Nicolas; Edger, Patrick P; Hefer, Charles A; Mizrachi, Eshchar; Schuetz, Mathias; Smets, Erik; Myburg, Alexander A; Douglas, Carl J; Schranz, Michael E; Lens, Frederic

    2016-06-01

    Many plant genes are known to be involved in the development of cambium and wood, but how the expression and functional interaction of these genes determine the unique biology of wood remains largely unknown. We used the soc1ful loss of function mutant - the woodiest genotype known in the otherwise herbaceous model plant Arabidopsis - to investigate the expression and interactions of genes involved in secondary growth (wood formation). Detailed anatomical observations of the stem in combination with mRNA sequencing were used to assess transcriptome remodeling during xylogenesis in wild-type and woody soc1ful plants. To interpret the transcriptome changes, we constructed functional gene association networks of differentially expressed genes using the STRING database. This analysis revealed functionally enriched gene association hubs that are differentially expressed in herbaceous and woody tissues. In particular, we observed the differential expression of genes related to mechanical stress and jasmonate biosynthesis/signaling during wood formation in soc1ful plants that may be an effect of greater tension within woody tissues. Our results suggest that habit shifts from herbaceous to woody life forms observed in many angiosperm lineages could have evolved convergently by genetic changes that modulate the gene expression and interaction network, and thereby redeploy the conserved wood developmental program. © 2016 The Authors. The Plant Journal published by Society for Experimental Biology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  12. DNA methylation status of nuclear-encoded mitochondrial genes underlies the tissue-dependent mitochondrial functions

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    Takasugi Masaki

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Mitochondria are semi-autonomous, semi-self-replicating organelles harboring their own DNA (mitochondrial DNA, mtDNA, and their dysregulation is involved in the development of various diseases. While mtDNA does not generally undergo epigenetic modifications, almost all mitochondrial proteins are encoded by nuclear DNA. However, the epigenetic regulation of nuclear-encoded mitochondrial genes (nuclear mt genes has not been comprehensively analyzed. Results We analyzed the DNA methylation status of 899 nuclear mt genes in the liver, brain, and heart tissues of mouse, and identified 636 nuclear mt genes carrying tissue-dependent and differentially methylated regions (T-DMRs. These nuclar mt genes are involved in various mitochondrial functions and they also include genes related to human diseases. T-DMRs regulate the expression of nuclear mt genes. Nuclear mt genes with tissue-specific hypomethylated T-DMRs were characterized by enrichment of the target genes of specific transcription factors such as FOXA2 in the liver, and CEBPA and STAT1 in the brain. Conclusions A substantial proportion of nuclear mt genes contained T-DMRs, and the DNA methylation status of numerous T-DMRs should underlie tissue-dependent mitochondrial functions.

  13. Functional characterization of duplicated Suppressor of Overexpression of Constans 1-like genes in petunia.

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    Jill C Preston

    Full Text Available Flowering time is strictly controlled by a combination of internal and external signals that match seed set with favorable environmental conditions. In the model plant species Arabidopsis thaliana (Brassicaceae, many of the genes underlying development and evolution of flowering have been discovered. However, much remains unknown about how conserved the flowering gene networks are in plants with different growth habits, gene duplication histories, and distributions. Here we functionally characterize three homologs of the flowering gene Suppressor Of Overexpression of Constans 1 (SOC1 in the short-lived perennial Petunia hybrida (petunia, Solanaceae. Similar to A. thaliana soc1 mutants, co-silencing of duplicated petunia SOC1-like genes results in late flowering. This phenotype is most severe when all three SOC1-like genes are silenced. Furthermore, expression levels of the SOC1-like genes Unshaven (UNS and Floral Binding Protein 21 (FBP21, but not FBP28, are positively correlated with developmental age. In contrast to A. thaliana, petunia SOC1-like gene expression did not increase with longer photoperiods, and FBP28 transcripts were actually more abundant under short days. Despite evidence of functional redundancy, differential spatio-temporal expression data suggest that SOC1-like genes might fine-tune petunia flowering in response to photoperiod and developmental stage. This likely resulted from modification of SOC1-like gene regulatory elements following recent duplication, and is a possible mechanism to ensure flowering under both inductive and non-inductive photoperiods.

  14. The Human Microbiome and Understanding the 16S rRNA Gene in Translational Nursing Science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ames, Nancy J; Ranucci, Alexandra; Moriyama, Brad; Wallen, Gwenyth R

    As more is understood regarding the human microbiome, it is increasingly important for nurse scientists and healthcare practitioners to analyze these microbial communities and their role in health and disease. 16S rRNA sequencing is a key methodology in identifying these bacterial populations that has recently transitioned from use primarily in research to having increased utility in clinical settings. The objectives of this review are to (a) describe 16S rRNA sequencing and its role in answering research questions important to nursing science; (b) provide an overview of the oral, lung, and gut microbiomes and relevant research; and (c) identify future implications for microbiome research and 16S sequencing in translational nursing science. Sequencing using the 16S rRNA gene has revolutionized research and allowed scientists to easily and reliably characterize complex bacterial communities. This type of research has recently entered the clinical setting, one of the best examples involving the use of 16S sequencing to identify resistant pathogens, thereby improving the accuracy of bacterial identification in infection control. Clinical microbiota research and related requisite methods are of particular relevance to nurse scientists-individuals uniquely positioned to utilize these techniques in future studies in clinical settings.

  15. Twin studies advance the understanding of gene-environment interplay in human nutrigenomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pallister, Tess; Spector, Tim D; Menni, Cristina

    2014-12-01

    Investigations into the genetic architecture of diet-disease relationships are particularly relevant today with the global epidemic of obesity and chronic disease. Twin studies have demonstrated that genetic makeup plays a significant role in a multitude of dietary phenotypes such as energy and macronutrient intakes, dietary patterns, and specific food group intakes. Besides estimating heritability of dietary assessment, twins provide a naturally unique, case-control experiment. Due to their shared upbringing, matched genes and sex (in the case of monozygotic (MZ) twin pairs), and age, twins provide many advantages over classic epidemiological approaches. Future genetic epidemiological studies could benefit from the twin approach particularly where defining what is 'normal' is problematic due to the high inter-individual variability underlying metabolism. Here, we discuss the use of twins to generate heritability estimates of food intake phenotypes. We then highlight the value of discordant MZ pairs to further nutrition research through discovery and validation of biomarkers of intake and health status in collaboration with cutting-edge omics technologies.

  16. Understanding and preventing drug–drug and drug–gene interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tannenbaum, Cara; Sheehan, Nancy L

    2014-01-01

    Concomitant administration of multiple drugs can lead to unanticipated drug interactions and resultant adverse drug events with their associated costs. A more thorough understanding of the different cytochrome P450 isoenzymes and drug transporters has led to new methods to try to predict and prevent clinically relevant drug interactions. There is also an increased recognition of the need to identify the impact of pharmacogenetic polymorphisms on drug interactions. More stringent regulatory requirements have evolved for industry to classify cytochrome inhibitors and inducers, test the effect of drug interactions in the presence of polymorphic enzymes, and evaluate multiple potentially interacting drugs simultaneously. In clinical practice, drug alert software programs have been developed. This review discusses drug interaction mechanisms and strategies for screening and minimizing exposure to drug interactions. We also provide future perspectives for reducing the risk of clinically significant drug interactions. PMID:24745854

  17. Childhood tuberculosis is associated with decreased abundance of T cell gene transcripts and impaired T cell function.

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    Cheryl Hemingway

    Full Text Available The WHO estimates around a million children contract tuberculosis (TB annually with over 80 000 deaths from dissemination of infection outside of the lungs. The insidious onset and association with skin test anergy suggests failure of the immune system to both recognise and respond to infection. To understand the immune mechanisms, we studied genome-wide whole blood RNA expression in children with TB meningitis (TBM. Findings were validated in a second cohort of children with TBM and pulmonary TB (PTB, and functional T-cell responses studied in a third cohort of children with TBM, other extrapulmonary TB (EPTB and PTB. The predominant RNA transcriptional response in children with TBM was decreased abundance of multiple genes, with 140/204 (68% of all differentially regulated genes showing reduced abundance compared to healthy controls. Findings were validated in a second cohort with concordance of the direction of differential expression in both TBM (r2 = 0.78 p = 2x10-16 and PTB patients (r2 = 0.71 p = 2x10-16 when compared to a second group of healthy controls. Although the direction of expression of these significant genes was similar in the PTB patients, the magnitude of differential transcript abundance was less in PTB than in TBM. The majority of genes were involved in activation of leucocytes (p = 2.67E-11 and T-cell receptor signalling (p = 6.56E-07. Less abundant gene expression in immune cells was associated with a functional defect in T-cell proliferation that recovered after full TB treatment (p<0.0003. Multiple genes involved in T-cell activation show decreased abundance in children with acute TB, who also have impaired functional T-cell responses. Our data suggest that childhood TB is associated with an acquired immune defect, potentially resulting in failure to contain the pathogen. Elucidation of the mechanism causing the immune paresis may identify new treatment and prevention strategies.

  18. Urban Ecological Stewardship: Understanding the Structure, Function and Network of Community-based Urban Land Management

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    Lindsay K. Campbell

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Urban environmental stewardship activities are on the rise in cities throughout the Northeast. Groups participating in stewardship activities range in age, size, and geography and represent an increasingly complex and dynamic arrangement of civil society, government and business sectors. To better understand the structure, function and network of these community-based urban land managers, an assessment was conducted in 2004 by the research subcommittee of the Urban Ecology Collaborative. The goal of the assessment was to better understand the role of stewardship organizations engaged in urban ecology initiatives in selected major cities in the Northeastern U.S.: Boston, New Haven, New York City, Pittsburgh, Baltimore, and Washington, D.C. A total of 135 active organizations participated in this assessment. Findings include the discovery of a dynamic social network operating within cities, and a reserve of social capital and expertise that could be better utilized. Although often not the primary land owner, stewardship groups take an increasingly significant responsibility for a wide range of land use types including street and riparian corridors, vacant lots, public parks and gardens, green roofs, etc. Responsibilities include the delivery of public programs as well as daily maintenance and fundraising support. While most of the environmental stewardship organizations operate on staffs of zero or fewer than ten, with small cohorts of community volunteers, there is a significant difference in the total amount of program funding. Nearly all respondents agree that committed resources are scarce and insufficient with stewards relying upon and potentially competing for individual donations, local foundations, and municipal support. This makes it a challenge for the groups to grow beyond their current capacity and to develop long-term programs critical to resource management and education. It also fragments groups, making it difficult for planners and

  19. Functional divergence of MYB-related genes, WEREWOLF and AtMYB23 in Arabidopsis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tominaga-Wada, Rumi; Nukumizu, Yuka; Sato, Shusei; Kato, Tomohiko; Tabata, Satoshi; Wada, Takuji

    2012-01-01

    Epidermal cell differentiation in Arabidopsis is studied as a model system to understand the mechanisms that determine the developmental end state of plant cells. MYB-related transcription factors are involved in cell fate determination. To examine the molecular basis of this process, we analyzed the functional relationship of two R2R3-type MYB genes, AtMYB23 (MYB23) and WEREWOLF (WER). MYB23 is involved in leaf trichome formation. WER represses root-hair formation. Swapping domains between MYB23 and WER, we found that a low homology region of MYB23 might be involved in ectopic trichome initiation on hypocotyls. MYB23 and all MYB23-WER (MW) chimeric transgenes rescued the increased root-hair phenotype of the wer-1 mutant. Although WER did not rescue the gl1-1 no-trichome phenotype, MYB23 and all MW chimeric transgenes rescued gl1-1. These results suggest that MYB23 acquired a specific function for trichome differentiation during evolution.

  20. Functional Analysis of the Nitrogen Metabolite Repression Regulator Gene nmrA in Aspergillus flavus

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    Xiaoyun Han

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available In Aspergillus nidulans, the nitrogen metabolite repression regulator NmrA plays a major role in regulating the activity of the GATA transcription factor AreA during nitrogen metabolism. However, the function of nmrA in Aspergillus flavus has notbeen previously studied. Here, we report the identification and functional analysis of nmrA in A. flavus. Our work showed that the amino acid sequences of NmrA are highly conserved among Aspergillus species and that A. flavus NmrA protein contains a canonical Rossmann fold motif. Deletion of nmrA slowed the growth of A. flavus but significantly increased conidiation and sclerotia production. Moreover, seed infection experiments indicated that nmrA is required for the invasive virulence of A. flavus. In addition, the ΔnmrA mutant showed increased sensitivity to rapamycin and methyl methanesulfonate, suggesting that nmrA could be responsive to target of rapamycin signaling and DNA damage. Furthermore, quantitative real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction analysis suggested that nmrA might interact with other nitrogen regulatory and catabolic genes. Our study provides a better understanding of nitrogen metabolite repression and the nitrogen metabolism network in fungi.

  1. Towards the identification of protein complexes and functional modules by integrating PPI network and gene expression data

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    Li Min

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Identification of protein complexes and functional modules from protein-protein interaction (PPI networks is crucial to understanding the principles of cellular organization and predicting protein functions. In the past few years, many computational methods have been proposed. However, most of them considered the PPI networks as static graphs and overlooked the dynamics inherent within these networks. Moreover, few of them can distinguish between protein complexes and functional modules. Results In this paper, a new framework is proposed to distinguish between protein complexes and functional modules by integrating gene expression data into protein-protein interaction (PPI data. A series of time-sequenced subnetworks (TSNs is constructed according to the time that the interactions were activated. The algorithm TSN-PCD was then developed to identify protein complexes from these TSNs. As protein complexes are significantly related to functional modules, a new algorithm DFM-CIN is proposed to discover functional modules based on the identified complexes. The experimental results show that the combination of temporal gene expression data with PPI data contributes to identifying protein complexes more precisely. A quantitative comparison based on f-measure reveals that our algorithm TSN-PCD outperforms the other previous protein complex discovery algorithms. Furthermore, we evaluate the identified functional modules by using “Biological Process” annotated in GO (Gene Ontology. The validation shows that the identified functional modules are statistically significant in terms of “Biological Process”. More importantly, the relationship between protein complexes and functional modules are studied. Conclusions The proposed framework based on the integration of PPI data and gene expression data makes it possible to identify protein complexes and functional modules more effectively. Moveover, the proposed new framework and

  2. Functional genomics tools applied to plant metabolism: a survey on plant respiration, its connections and the annotation of complex gene functions

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    Wagner L. Araújo

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available The application of post-genomic techniques in plant respiration studies has greatly improved our ability to assign functions to gene products. In addition it has also revealed previously unappreciated interactions between distal elements of metabolism. Such results have reinforced the need to consider plant respiratory metabolism as part of a complex network and making sense of such interactions will ultimately require the construction of predictive and mechanistic models. Transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics and the quantification of metabolic flux will be of great value in creating such models both by facilitating the annotation of complex gene function, determining their structure and by furnishing the quantitative data required to test them. In this review we highlight how these experimental approaches have contributed to our current understanding of plant respiratory metabolism and its interplay with associated process (e.g. photosynthesis, photorespiration and nitrogen metabolism. We also discuss how data from these techniques may be integrated, with the ultimate aim of identifying mechanisms that control and regulate plant respiration and discovering novel gene functions with potential biotechnological implications.

  3. Comparative genomic analysis of SET domain family reveals the origin, expansion, and putative function of the arthropod-specific SmydA genes as histone modifiers in insects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Feng; Liu, Qing; Wang, Yanli; Zhang, Jie; Wang, Huimin; Song, Tianqi; Yang, Meiling

    2017-01-01

    Abstract The SET domain is an evolutionarily conserved motif present in histone lysine methyltransferases, which are important in the regulation of chromatin and gene expression in animals. In this study, we searched for SET domain–containing genes (SET genes) in all of the 147 arthropod genomes sequenced at the time of carrying out this experiment to understand the evolutionary history by which SET domains have evolved in insects. Phylogenetic and ancestral state reconstruction analysis revealed an arthropod-specific SET gene family, named SmydA, that is ancestral to arthropod animals and specifically diversified during insect evolution. Considering that pseudogenization is the most probable fate of the new emerging gene copies, we provided experimental and evolutionary evidence to demonstrate their essential functions. Fluorescence in situ hybridization analysis and in vitro methyltransferase activity assays showed that the SmydA-2 gene was transcriptionally active and retained the original histone methylation activity. Expression knockdown by RNA interference significantly increased mortality, implying that the SmydA genes may be essential for insect survival. We further showed predominantly strong purifying selection on the SmydA gene family and a potential association between the regulation of gene expression and insect phenotypic plasticity by transcriptome analysis. Overall, these data suggest that the SmydA gene family retains essential functions that may possibly define novel regulatory pathways in insects. This work provides insights into the roles of lineage-specific domain duplication in insect evolution. PMID:28444351

  4. Long-term oil contamination alters the molecular ecological networks of soil microbial functional genes

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    Yuting eLiang

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available With knowledge on microbial composition and diversity, investigation of within-community interactions is a further step to elucidate microbial ecological functions, such as the biodegradation of hazardous contaminants. In this work, microbial functional molecular ecological networks were studied in both contaminated and uncontaminated soils to determine the possible influences of oil contamination on microbial interactions and potential functions. Soil samples were obtained from an oil-exploring site located in South China, and the microbial functional genes were analyzed with GeoChip, a high-throughput functional microarray. By building random networks based on null model, we demonstrated that overall network structures and properties were significantly different between contaminated and uncontaminated soils (P < 0.001. Network connectivity, module numbers, and modularity were all reduced with contamination. Moreover, the topological roles of the genes (module hub and connectors were altered with oil contamination. Subnetworks of genes involved in alkane and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon degradation were also constructed. Negative co-occurrence patterns prevailed among functional genes, thereby indicating probable competition relationships. The potential keystone genes, defined as either hubs or genes with highest connectivities in the network, were further identified. The network constructed in this study predicted the potential effects of anthropogenic contamination on microbial community co-occurrence interactions.

  5. A comprehensive functional analysis of tissue specificity of human gene expression

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    Guryanov Alexey

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In recent years, the maturation of microarray technology has allowed the genome-wide analysis of gene expression patterns to identify tissue-specific and ubiquitously expressed ('housekeeping' genes. We have performed a functional and topological analysis of housekeeping and tissue-specific networks to identify universally necessary biological processes, and those unique to or characteristic of particular tissues. Results We measured whole genome expression in 31 human tissues, identifying 2374 housekeeping genes expressed in all tissues, and genes uniquely expressed in each tissue. Comprehensive functional analysis showed that the housekeeping set is substantially larger than previously thought, and is enriched with vital processes such as oxidative phosphorylation, ubiquitin-dependent proteolysis, translation and energy metabolism. Network topology of the housekeeping network was characterized by higher connectivity and shorter paths between the proteins than the global network. Ontology enrichment scoring and network topology of tissue-specific genes were consistent with each tissue's function and expression patterns clustered together in accordance with tissue origin. Tissue-specific genes were twice as likely as housekeeping genes to be drug targets, allowing the identification of tissue 'signature networks' that will facilitate the discovery of new therapeutic targets and biomarkers of tissue-targeted diseases. Conclusion A comprehensive functional analysis of housekeeping and tissue-specific genes showed that the biological function of housekeeping and tissue-specific genes was consistent with tissue origin. Network analysis revealed that tissue-specific networks have distinct network properties related to each tissue's function. Tissue 'signature networks' promise to be a rich source of targets and biomarkers for disease treatment and diagnosis.

  6. Plato's cave algorithm: inferring functional signaling networks from early gene expression shadows.

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    Yishai Shimoni

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Improving the ability to reverse engineer biochemical networks is a major goal of systems biology. Lesions in signaling networks lead to alterations in gene expression, which in principle should allow network reconstruction. However, the information about the activity levels of signaling proteins conveyed in overall gene expression is limited by the complexity of gene expression dynamics and of regulatory network topology. Two observations provide the basis for overcoming this limitation: a. genes induced without de-novo protein synthesis (early genes show a linear accumulation of product in the first hour after the change in the cell's state; b. The signaling components in the network largely function in the linear range of their stimulus-response curves. Therefore, unlike most genes or most time points, expression profiles of early genes at an early time point provide direct biochemical assays that represent the activity levels of upstream signaling components. Such expression data provide the basis for an efficient algorithm (Plato's Cave algorithm; PLACA to reverse engineer functional signaling networks. Unlike conventional reverse engineering algorithms that use steady state values, PLACA uses stimulated early gene expression measurements associated with systematic perturbations of signaling components, without measuring the signaling components themselves. Besides the reverse engineered network, PLACA also identifies the genes detecting the functional interaction, thereby facilitating validation of the predicted functional network. Using simulated datasets, the algorithm is shown to be robust to experimental noise. Using experimental data obtained from gonadotropes, PLACA reverse engineered the interaction network of six perturbed signaling components. The network recapitulated many known interactions and identified novel functional interactions that were validated by further experiment. PLACA uses the results of experiments that are

  7. Plato's cave algorithm: inferring functional signaling networks from early gene expression shadows.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimoni, Yishai; Fink, Marc Y; Choi, Soon-gang; Sealfon, Stuart C

    2010-06-24

    Improving the ability to reverse engineer biochemical networks is a major goal of systems biology. Lesions in signaling networks lead to alterations in gene expression, which in principle should allow network reconstruction. However, the information about the activity levels of signaling proteins conveyed in overall gene expression is limited by the complexity of gene expression dynamics and of regulatory network topology. Two observations provide the basis for overcoming this limitation: a. genes induced without de-novo protein synthesis (early genes) show a linear accumulation of product in the first hour after the change in the cell's state; b. The signaling components in the network largely function in the linear range of their stimulus-response curves. Therefore, unlike most genes or most time points, expression profiles of early genes at an early time point provide direct biochemical assays that represent the activity levels of upstream signaling components. Such expression data provide the basis for an efficient algorithm (Plato's Cave algorithm; PLACA) to reverse engineer functional signaling networks. Unlike conventional reverse engineering algorithms that use steady state values, PLACA uses stimulated early gene expression measurements associated with systematic perturbations of signaling components, without measuring the signaling components themselves. Besides the reverse engineered network, PLACA also identifies the genes detecting the functional interaction, thereby facilitating validation of the predicted functional network. Using simulated datasets, the algorithm is shown to be robust to experimental noise. Using experimental data obtained from gonadotropes, PLACA reverse engineered the interaction network of six perturbed signaling components. The network recapitulated many known interactions and identified novel functional interactions that were validated by further experiment. PLACA uses the results of experiments that are feasible for any

  8. The potential of virus-induced gene silencing for speeding up functional characterization of plant genes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Benedito, V.A.; Visser, P.B.; Angenent, G.C.; Krens, F.A.

    2004-01-01

    Virus-induced gene silencing (VIGS) has been shown to be of great potential in plant reverse genetics. Advantages of VIGS over other approaches, such as T-DNA or transposon tagging, include the circumvention of plant transformation, methodological simplicity and robustness, and speedy results. These

  9. Gene conversion of two functional goat alpha-globin genes preserves only minimal flanking sequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schon, E A; Wernke, S M; Lingrel, J B

    1982-06-25

    We have determined the complete nucleotide sequence of the nonallelic adult goat I alpha- and II alpha-globin genes and, as is the case with the duplicated human alpha-to each other. Such high homology (99%) has most likely been preserved via a gene conversion mechanism. The conversion unit in goats is only about 9000 base pairs in length, and contained within this short region are all the known signals required for accurate and efficient transcription, with the CCAAT box adjacent to the 5'-boundary of the conversion unit and the poly(A) addition site adjacent to the 3' end. This conversion unit is also flanked by a 23-base-pair direct repeat "boundary sequence," vestiges of which are also observable in the human and mouse alpha-globin genes and pseudogenes. These direct repeats imply that a transposition-like event may have been responsible for the insertion of an ancestral alpha-like sequence into a new chromosomal locus, and that this insertion event and subsequent gene duplication may have predated the mammalian radiation.

  10. Genome Holography: Deciphering Function-Form Motifs from Gene Expression Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roth, Dalit; Regev, Tamar; Bransburg-Zabary, Sharron; Jacob, Eshel Ben

    2008-01-01

    Background DNA chips allow simultaneous measurements of genome-wide response of thousands of genes, i.e. system level monitoring of the gene-network activity. Advanced analysis methods have been developed to extract meaningful information from the vast amount of raw gene-expression data obtained from the microarray measurements. These methods usually aimed to distinguish between groups of subjects (e.g., cancer patients vs. healthy subjects) or identifying marker genes that help to distinguish between those groups. We assumed that motifs related to the internal structure of operons and gene-networks regulation are also embedded in microarray and can be deciphered by using proper analysis. Methodology/Principal Findings The analysis presented here is based on investigating the gene-gene correlations. We analyze a database of gene expression of Bacillus subtilis exposed to sub-lethal levels of 37 different antibiotics. Using unsupervised analysis (dendrogram) of the matrix of normalized gene-gene correlations, we identified the operons as they form distinct clusters of genes in the sorted correlation matrix. Applying dimension-reduction algorithm (Principal Component Analysis, PCA) to the matrices of normalized correlations reveals functional motifs. The genes are placed in a reduced 3-dimensional space of the three leading PCA eigen-vectors according to their corresponding eigen-values. We found that the organization of the genes in the reduced PCA space recovers motifs of the operon internal structure, such as the order of the genes along the genome, gene separation by non-coding segments, and translational start and end regions. In addition to the intra-operon structure, it is also possible to predict inter-operon relationships, operons sharing functional regulation factors, and more. In particular, we demonstrate the above in the context of the competence and sporulation pathways. Conclusions/Significance We demonstrated that by analyzing gene-gene correlation

  11. A new apparently functional IGVK gene (VkLa) present in some individuals only

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Juul, L; Hougs, L; Barington, T

    1998-01-01

    We describe a hitherto unknown functional IGKV gene, VkLa, belonging to the IGKV1 subgroup with exon 2 having only 94% similarity to the closest known IGKV gene, 1-13/1D-13 (L4/L18a). Genomic DNA sequences spanning from 5' of the decanucleotide box to 3' of the heptamer (649 bp) were cloned...... in the available IGKV gene repertoire than was hitherto assumed. Finally, we describe a minor correction in the IGKV1D-43 (L23) gene sequence....

  12. Identification of biological functions and gene networks regulated by heat stress in U937 human lymphoma cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Furusawa, Yukihiro; Tabuchi, Yoshiaki; Wada, Shigehito; Takasaki, Ichiro; Ohtsuka, Kenzo; Kondo, Takashi

    2011-08-01

    Although cancer cells exposed to temperatures >42.5°C undergo cell death as the temperature rises, exposure of up to 42.5°C induces slight or no cytotoxicity. The temperature of 42.5°C is, therefore, well known to be the inflection point of hyperthermia. To better understand the molecular mechanisms underlying cellular responses to heat stress at temperatures higher and lower than the inflection point, we carried out global scale microarray and computational gene expression analyses. Human leukemia U937 cells were incubated at 42°C or 44°C for 15 min and cultured at 37°C for 0-6 h. Apoptosis accompanied by the activation of caspase-3 and DNA fragmentation was only observed in cells treated with heat stress at 44°C, but not at 42°C. Although a large number of genes were differentially expressed by a factor of 2.0 or greater, we found substantial differences with respect to the biological functions and gene networks of the genes differentially expressed at the two temperatures examined. Interestingly, we identified temperature-specific gene networks that were considered to be mainly associated with cell death or cellular compromise and cellular function and maintenance at 44°C or 42°C, respectively, by using the Ingenuity pathway analysis tools. These findings provide the molecular basis for a further understanding of the mechanisms of the biological changes that are responsive to heat stress in human lymphoma cells.

  13. MADS interactomics : towards understanding the molecular mechanisms of plant MADS-domain transcription factor function

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smaczniak, C.D.

    2013-01-01

    Protein-protein and protein-DNA interactions are essential for the molecular action of transcription factors. By combinatorial binding to target gene promoters, transcription factors are able to up- or down-regulate the expression of these genes. MADS-domain proteins comprise a large family of

  14. Understanding Zika Virus Stability and Developing a Chimeric Vaccine through Functional Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xuping Xie

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Compared with other flaviviruses, Zika virus (ZIKV is uniquely associated with congenital diseases in pregnant women. One recent study reported that (i ZIKV has higher thermostability than dengue virus (DENV [a flavivirus closely related to ZIKV], which might contribute to the disease outcome; (ii the higher thermostability of ZIKV could arise from an extended loop structure in domain III of the viral envelope (E protein and an extra hydrogen-bond interaction between E molecules (V. A. Kostyuchenko, E. X. Y. Lim, S. Zhang, G. Fibriansah, T.-S. Ng, J. S. G. Ooi, J. Shi, and S.-M. Lok, Nature 533:425–428, 2016, https://doi.org/10.1038/nature17994. Here we report the functional analysis of the structural information in the context of complete ZIKV and DENV-2 virions. Swapping the prM-E genes between ZIKV and DENV-2 switched the thermostability of the chimeric viruses, identifying the prM-E proteins as the major determinants for virion thermostability. Shortening the extended loop of the E protein by 1 amino acid was lethal for ZIKV assembly/release. Mutations (Q350I and T351V that abolished the extra hydrogen-bond interaction between the E proteins did not reduce ZIKV thermostability, indicating that the extra interaction does not increase the thermostability. Interestingly, mutant T351V was attenuated in A129 mice defective in type I interferon receptors, even though the virus retained the wild-type thermostability. Furthermore, we found that a chimeric ZIKV with the DENV-2 prM-E and a chimeric DENV-2 with the ZIKV prM-E were highly attenuated in A129 mice; these chimeric viruses were highly immunogenic and protective against DENV-2 and ZIKV challenge, respectively. These results indicate the potential of these chimeric viruses for vaccine development.

  15. Recombinant yeast as a functional tool for understanding bitterness and cucurbitacin biosynthesis in watermelon (Citrullus spp.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidovich-Rikanati, Rachel; Shalev, Lior; Baranes, Nadine; Meir, Ayala; Itkin, Maxim; Cohen, Shahar; Zimbler, Kobi; Portnoy, Vitaly; Ebizuka, Yutaka; Shibuya, Masaaki; Burger, Yosef; Katzir, Nurit; Schaffer, Arthur A; Lewinsohn, Efraim; Tadmor, Ya'akov

    2015-01-01

    Cucurbitacins are a group of bitter-tasting oxygenated tetracyclic triterpenes that are produced in the family Cucurbitaceae and other plant families. The natural roles of cucurbitacins in plants are probably related to defence against pathogens and pests. Cucurbitadienol, a triterpene synthesized from oxidosqualene, is the first committed precursor to cucurbitacins produced by a specialized oxidosqualene cyclase termed cucurbitadienol synthase. We explored cucurbitacin accumulation in watermelon in relation to bitterness. Our findings show that cucurbitacins are accumulated in bitter-tasting watermelon, Citrullus lanatus var. citroides, as well as in their wild ancestor, C. colocynthis, but not in non-bitter commercial cultivars of sweet watermelon (C. lanatus var. lanatus). Molecular analysis of genes expressed in the roots of several watermelon accessions led to the isolation of three sequences (CcCDS1, CcCDS2 and ClCDS1), all displaying high similarity to the pumpkin CpCPQ, encoding a protein previously shown to possess cucurbitadienol synthase activity. We utilized the Saccharomyces cerevisiae strain BY4743, heterozygous for lanosterol synthase, to probe for possible encoded cucurbitadienol synthase activity of the expressed watermelon sequences. Functional expression of the two sequences isolated from C. colocynthis (CcCDS1 and CcCDS2) in yeast revealed that only CcCDS2 possessed cucurbitadienol synthase activity, while CcCDS1 did not display cucurbitadienol synthase activity in recombinant yeast. ClCDS1 isolated from C. lanatus var. lanatus is almost identical to CcCDS1. Our results imply that CcCDS2 plays a role in imparting bitterness to watermelon. Yeast has been an excellent diagnostic tool to determine the first committed step of cucurbitacin biosynthesis in watermelon. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  16. Multilevel functional genomics data integration as a tool for understanding physiology: a network biology perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidsen, Peter K; Turan, Nil; Egginton, Stuart; Falciani, Francesco

    2016-02-01

    The overall aim of physiological research is to understand how living systems function in an integrative manner. Consequently, the discipline of physiology has since its infancy attempted to link multiple levels of biological organization. Increasingly this has involved mathematical and computational approaches, typically to model a small number of components spanning several levels of biological organization. With the advent of "omics" technologies, which can characterize the molecular state of a cell or tissue (intended as the level of expression and/or activity of its molecular components), the number of molecular components we can quantify has increased exponentially. Paradoxically, the unprecedented amount of experimental data has made it more difficult to derive conceptual models underlying essential mechanisms regulating mammalian physiology. We present an overview of state-of-the-art methods currently used to identifying biological networks underlying genomewide responses. These are based on a data-driven approach that relies on advanced computational methods designed to "learn" biology from observational data. In this review, we illustrate an application of these computational methodologies using a case study integrating an in vivo model representing the transcriptional state of hypoxic skeletal muscle with a clinical study representing muscle wasting in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patients. The broader application of these approaches to modeling multiple levels of biological data in the context of modern physiology is discussed. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  17. Complexities in Understanding Attentional Functioning among Children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kimberly eLane

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Parental reports of attention problems and clinical symptomatology of ADHD among children with fetal alcohol syndrome disorder (FASD were assessed in relation to performance on standardized subtests of attantional control/shifting and selective attention from the Test of Everyday Attention for Children (TEA-Ch; Manly et al., 1998. The participants included 14 children with FASD with a mean CA of 11.7 years and a mean MA of 9.7 years, and 14 typically developing (TD children with no reported history of prenatal exposure to alcohol or attention problems with a mean CA of 8.4 years and a mean MA of 9.6 years. The children with FASD were rated by their caregivers as having clinically significant attention difficulties for their developmental age. The reported symptomatology for the majority of the children with FASD were consistent with a diagnosis of ADHD, combined type, and only one child had a score within the average range. These reports are consistent with the finding here that the children with FASD demonstrated difficulties on the Creature Counting subtest of attentional control/shifting, but inconsistent with the finding that they outperformed the TD children on the Map Mission subtest of selective attention. These findings are considered within the context of the complexity in understanding attentional functioning among children with FASD and discrepancies across sources of information and components of attention.

  18. Characterization and functional analysis of Calmodulin and Calmodulin-like genes in Fragaria vesca

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kai Zhang

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Calcium is a universal messenger that is involved in the modulation of diverse developmental and adaptive processes in response to various stimuli. Calmodulin (CaM and calmodulin-like (CML proteins are major calcium sensors in all eukaryotes, and they have been extensively investigated for many years in plants and animals. However, little is known about CaMs and CMLs in woodland strawberry (Fragaria vesca. In this study, we performed a genome-wide analysis of the strawberry genome and identified 4 CaM and 36 CML genes. Bioinformatics analyses, including gene structure, phylogenetic tree, synteny and three-dimensional model assessments, revealed the conservation and divergence of FvCaMs and FvCMLs, thus providing insight regarding their functions. In addition, the transcript abundance of four FvCaM genes and the four most related FvCML genes were examined in different tissues and in response to multiple stress and hormone treatments. Moreover, we investigated the subcellular localization of several FvCaMs and FvCMLs, revealing their potential interactions based on the localizations and potential functions. Furthermore, overexpression of five FvCaM and FvCML genes could not induce a hypersensitive response, but four of the five genes could increase resistance to Agrobacterium tumefaciens in Nicotiana benthamiana leaves. This study provides evidence for the biological roles of FvCaM and CML genes, and the results lay the foundation for future functional studies of these genes.

  19. Genes controlling the development and function of plant vacuoles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Li, Y.

    2017-01-01

    All plant cells contain numerous organelles, like mitochondria chloroplasts, with specific functions that are generally very similar among cell types and species. However, vacuoles, which are by far the largest compartments in plant cells, show a broad diversification in shape, dimensions, content

  20. Toward a systems-level understanding of gene regulatory, protein interaction, and metabolic networks in cyanobacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández-Prieto, Miguel A; Semeniuk, Trudi A; Futschik, Matthias E

    2014-01-01

    Cyanobacteria are essential primary producers in marine ecosystems, playing an important role in both carbon and nitrogen cycles. In the last decade, various genome sequencing and metagenomic projects have generated large amounts of genetic data for cyanobacteria. This wealth of data provides researchers with a new basis for the study of molecular adaptation, ecology and evolution of cyanobacteria, as well as for developing biotechnological applications. It also facilitates the use of multiplex techniques, i.e., expression profiling by high-throughput technologies such as microarrays, RNA-seq, and proteomics. However, exploration and analysis of these data is challenging, and often requires advanced computational methods. Also, they need to be integrated into our existing framework of knowledge to use them to draw reliable biological conclusions. Here, systems biology provides important tools. Especially, the construction and analysis of molecular networks has emerged as a powerful systems-level framework, with which to integrate such data, and to better understand biological relevant processes in these organisms. In this review, we provide an overview of the advances and experimental approaches undertaken using multiplex data from genomic, transcriptomic, proteomic, and metabolomic studies in cyanobacteria. Furthermore, we summarize currently available web-based tools dedicated to cyanobacteria, i.e., CyanoBase, CyanoEXpress, ProPortal, Cyanorak, CyanoBIKE, and CINPER. Finally, we present a case study for the freshwater model cyanobacteria, Synechocystis sp. PCC6803, to show the power of meta-analysis, and the potential to extrapolate acquired knowledge to the ecologically important marine cyanobacteria genus, Prochlorococcus.

  1. Molecular Cloning and Functional Characterization of Factors Involved in Post-transcriptional Gene Expression

    OpenAIRE

    Jin, Shao-Bo

    2004-01-01

    Gene expression in the eukaryotic cell is a fundamental cellular process, which consists of several distinct steps but extensively coupled to each other. From site of transcription in the nucleus to the cytoplasm, both mRNA and rRNA are associated with a proper set of proteins. These proteins influence RNA processing, transport as well as ribosome maturation. We have tried to take advantage of different model systems to understand the process of eukaryotic gene expression at the post-transcri...

  2. Histamine exerts multiple effects on expression of genes associated with epidermal barrier function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutowska-Owsiak, D; Salimi, M; Selvakumar, T A; Wang, X; Taylor, S; Ogg, G S

    2014-01-01

    The role of epidermal barrier genes in the pathogenesis of atopic skin inflammation has recently been highlighted. Cytokines that are abundant in the skin during inflammation have been shown to exert various effects on the expression of barrier genes, although the role of histamine in this area of skin biology is not yet fully understood. To assess the effect of stimulation with histamine on keratinocytes by analysis of the pathways involved in epidermal barrier integrity. We performed a gene expression analysis of histamine-stimulated keratinocytes. Functional changes were tested using the dye penetration assay. Differential changes in filaggrin and the filaggrin-processing enzyme bleomycin hydrolase (BLMH) were validated at the protein level, and expression was also assessed in filaggrin knock-down keratinocytes. Histamine altered expression of multiple barrier genes. Expression of filaggrin was downregulated, as was that of other markers, thus suggesting the presence of delayed/aberrant keratinocyte differentiation. Expression of genes involved in cellular adhesiveness and genes of protease expression was dysregulated, but expression of protease inhibitors was increased. BLMH was upregulated in keratinocytes subjected to histamine and filaggrin knockdown. Histamine exerts a dual effect on epidermal barrier genes; it suppresses keratinocyte differentiation and dysregulates genes of cellular adhesiveness, although it induces genes contributing to stratum corneum function. Upregulation of BLMH and protease inhibitors could support maintenance of the permeability barrier by enhanced generation of moisturizing compounds and suppressed desquamation. In contrast, in the case of stratum corneum damage, histamine could enhance transcutaneous sensitization.

  3. An Analysis of Grade 11 Learners' Levels of Understanding of Functions in Terms of APOS Theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chimhande, Tinoda; Naidoo, Ana; Stols, Gerrit

    2017-01-01

    This article reports on a study of six Grade 11 learners' levels of understanding of concepts related to the function definition and representation. Task-based clinical interviews were used to elicit the learners' interpretations and reasoning when working with these function-related concepts. Indicators for Action-Process-Object-Schema (APOS)…

  4. Mutational Pleiotropy and the Strength of Stabilizing Selection Within and Between Functional Modules of Gene Expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collet, Julie M; McGuigan, Katrina; Allen, Scott L; Chenoweth, Stephen F; Blows, Mark W

    2018-02-01

    Variational modules, sets of pleiotropically covarying traits, affect phenotypic evolution, and therefore are predicted to reflect functional modules, such that traits within a variational module also share a common function. Such an alignment of function and pleiotropy is expected to facilitate adaptation by reducing the deleterious effects of mutations, and allowing coordinated evolution of functionally related sets of traits. Here, we adopt a high-dimensional quantitative genetic approach using a large number of gene expression traits in Drosophila serrata to test whether functional grouping, defined by GO terms, predicts variational modules. Mutational or standing genetic covariance was significantly greater than among randomly grouped sets of genes for 38% of our functional groups, indicating that GO terms can predict variational modularity to some extent. We estimated stabilizing selection acting on mutational covariance to test the prediction that functional pleiotropy would result in reduced deleterious effects of mutations within functional modules. Stabilizing selection within functional modules was weaker than that acting on randomly grouped sets of genes in only 23% of functional groups indicating that functional alignment can reduce deleterious effects of pleiotropic mutation, but typically does not. Our analyses also revealed the presence of variational modules that spanned multiple functions. Copyright © 2018, Genetics.

  5. Comparative and functional triatomine genomics reveals reductions and expansions in insecticide resistance-related gene families.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucila Traverso

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Triatomine insects are vectors of Trypanosoma cruzi, a protozoan parasite that is the causative agent of Chagas' disease. This is a neglected disease affecting approximately 8 million people in Latin America. The existence of diverse pyrethroid resistant populations of at least two species demonstrates the potential of triatomines to develop high levels of insecticide resistance. Therefore, the incorporation of strategies for resistance management is a main concern for vector control programs. Three enzymatic superfamilies are thought to mediate xenobiotic detoxification and resistance: Glutathione Transferases (GSTs, Cytochromes P450 (CYPs and Carboxyl/Cholinesterases (CCEs. Improving our knowledge of key triatomine detoxification enzymes will strengthen our understanding of insecticide resistance processes in vectors of Chagas' disease.The discovery and description of detoxification gene superfamilies in normalized transcriptomes of three triatomine species: Triatoma dimidiata, Triatoma infestans and Triatoma pallidipennis is presented. Furthermore, a comparative analysis of these superfamilies among the triatomine transcriptomes and the genome of Rhodnius prolixus, also a triatomine vector of Chagas' disease, and other well-studied insect genomes was performed. The expression pattern of detoxification genes in R. prolixus transcriptomes from key organs was analyzed. The comparisons reveal gene expansions in Sigma class GSTs, CYP3 in CYP superfamily and clade E in CCE superfamily. Moreover, several CYP families identified in these triatomines have not yet been described in other insects. Conversely, several groups of insecticide resistance related enzymes within each enzyme superfamily are reduced or lacking in triatomines. Furthermore, our qRT-PCR results showed an increase in the expression of a CYP4 gene in a T. infestans population resistant to pyrethroids. These results could point to an involvement of metabolic detoxification mechanisms

  6. Structure and function of the human metallothionein gene family: Final technical report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Karin, M.

    1986-01-01

    The full nucleotide sequence of two additional human metallothionein (hMT) genes has been determined. These genes, hMT-I/sub B/ and hMT-I/sub F/, are located within the MT-I gene cluster we have described originally. The hMT-I/sub F/ gene is the first hMT-I gene whose amino acid sequence is in complete agreement with the published sequence of the human MT-I proteins. Therefore it is likely to be an active gene encoding a functional protein. However, since we have just completed the sequence analysis, we have not characterized this gene further yet. The hMT-I/sub B/ gene is closely linked to the hMT-I/sub A/ gene, and two pseudogenes, hMT-I/sub C/ and hMT-I/sub D/ separate the two. From its nucleotide sequence hMT-I/sub B/ seems to be an active gene, encoding a functional protein even though it differs in four positions from the published sequence of human MT-I proteins. This gene is expressed in a human hepatoma cell line, HepG2, and its expression is stimulated by Cd ++ . Using gene fusions to the viral thymidine-kinase gene we find that hMT-I/sub B/, like the hMT-I/sub A/ and hMT-II/sub A/ genes, contains a heavy metal responsive promoterregulatory element within its 5' flanking region. We analyzed the level of hMT-I/sub B/ mRNA in a variety of human cell lines by the S1 nuclease technique, and compared it to the expression of the hMT-II/sub A/ gene. While the hMT-II/sub A/ gene was expressed in all of the cell lines analyzed, the hMT-I/sub B/ gene was expressed in liver and kidney derived cell lines cells. This suggest that the expression of the hMT-I/sub B/ gene is controlled in a tissue specific manner. 13 refs

  7. Discovery of functional genes for systemic acquired resistance in Arabidopsis thaliana through integrated data mining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Youlian; Pylatuik, Jeffrey D; Ouyang, Junjun; Famili, A Fazel; Fobert, Pierre R

    2004-12-01

    Various data mining techniques combined with sequence motif information in the promoter region of genes were applied to discover functional genes that are involved in the defense mechanism of systemic acquired resistance (SAR) in Arabidopsis thaliana. A series of K-Means clustering with difference-in-shape as distance measure was initially applied. A stability measure was used to validate this clustering process. A decision tree algorithm with the discover-and-mask technique was used to identify a group of most informative genes. Appearance and abundance of various transcription factor binding sites in the promoter region of the genes were studied. Through the combination of these techniques, we were able to identify 24 candidate genes involved in the SAR defense mechanism. The candidate genes fell into 2 highly resolved categories, each category showing significantly unique profiles of regulatory elements in their promoter regions. This study demonstrates the strength of such integration methods and suggests a broader application of this approach.

  8. EWS and FUS bind a subset of transcribed genes encoding proteins enriched in RNA regulatory functions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Luo, Yonglun; Friis, Jenny Blechingberg; Fernandes, Ana Miguel

    2015-01-01

    Background FUS (TLS) and EWS (EWSR1) belong to the FET-protein family of RNA and DNA binding proteins. FUS and EWS are structurally and functionally related and participate in transcriptional regulation and RNA processing. FUS and EWS are identified in translocation generated cancer fusion proteins...... and involved in the human neurological diseases amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and fronto-temporal lobar degeneration. Results To determine the gene regulatory functions of FUS and EWS at the level of chromatin, we have performed chromatin immunoprecipitation followed by next generation sequencing (Ch......IP-seq). Our results show that FUS and EWS bind to a subset of actively transcribed genes, that binding often is downstream the poly(A)-signal, and that binding overlaps with RNA polymerase II. Functional examinations of selected target genes identified that FUS and EWS can regulate gene expression...

  9. Detecting Functional Structures in E. coli Gene Networks from Expression Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Tianlong; Opitz, Madeleine; Bassler, Kevin E.

    The rapidly growing amount of available gene expression data for many organisms makes the development of robust systematic methods for determining the structure and function of regulatory networks from that data an important goal. Recently, methods that use the context likelihood of relatedness to infer a network and then use modularity maximizing community detection algorithms on the inferred network to find the functional structure were shown to be effective. Improvements of these methods will be presented and applied to systematically study Escherichia coli expression data. First robust functionally related communities of genes are identified and then the structure of the more closely related genes within those communities are determined. Results will be compared with gene ontology terms and the RegulonDB database. Predictions of a number of significant new regulatory relations are found. Work supported by the NSF through Grants DMR-1507371 and IOS-1546858.

  10. Analysis of mammalian gene function through broad based phenotypic screens across a consortium of mouse clinics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, David J; Adams, Niels C; Adler, Thure; Aguilar-Pimentel, Antonio; Ali-Hadji, Dalila; Amann, Gregory; André, Philippe; Atkins, Sarah; Auburtin, Aurelie; Ayadi, Abdel; Becker, Julien; Becker, Lore; Bedu, Elodie; Bekeredjian, Raffi; Birling, Marie-Christine; Blake, Andrew; Bottomley, Joanna; Bowl, Mike; Brault, Véronique; Busch, Dirk H; Bussell, James N; Calzada-Wack, Julia; Cater, Heather; Champy, Marie-France; Charles, Philippe; Chevalier, Claire; Chiani, Francesco; Codner, Gemma F; Combe, Roy; Cox, Roger; Dalloneau, Emilie; Dierich, André; Di Fenza, Armida; Doe, Brendan; Duchon, Arnaud; Eickelberg, Oliver; Esapa, Chris T; El Fertak, Lahcen; Feigel, Tanja; Emelyanova, Irina; Estabel, Jeanne; Favor, Jack; Flenniken, Ann; Gambadoro, Alessia; Garrett, Lilian; Gates, Hilary; Gerdin, Anna-Karin; Gkoutos, George; Greenaway, Simon; Glasl, Lisa; Goetz, Patrice; Da Cruz, Isabelle Goncalves; Götz, Alexander; Graw, Jochen; Guimond, Alain; Hans, Wolfgang; Hicks, Geoff; Hölter, Sabine M; Höfler, Heinz; Hancock, John M; Hoehndorf, Robert; Hough, Tertius; Houghton, Richard; Hurt, Anja; Ivandic, Boris; Jacobs, Hughes; Jacquot, Sylvie; Jones, Nora; Karp, Natasha A; Katus, Hugo A; Kitchen, Sharon; Klein-Rodewald, Tanja; Klingenspor, Martin; Klopstock, Thomas; Lalanne, Valerie; Leblanc, Sophie; Lengger, Christoph; le Marchand, Elise; Ludwig, Tonia; Lux, Aline; McKerlie, Colin; Maier, Holger; Mandel, Jean-Louis; Marschall, Susan; Mark, Manuel; Melvin, David G; Meziane, Hamid; Micklich, Kateryna; Mittelhauser, Christophe; Monassier, Laurent; Moulaert, David; Muller, Stéphanie; Naton, Beatrix; Neff, Frauke; Nolan, Patrick M; Nutter, Lauryl MJ; Ollert, Markus; Pavlovic, Guillaume; Pellegata, Natalia S; Peter, Emilie; Petit-Demoulière, Benoit; Pickard, Amanda; Podrini, Christine; Potter, Paul; Pouilly, Laurent; Puk, Oliver; Richardson, David; Rousseau, Stephane; Quintanilla-Fend, Leticia; Quwailid, Mohamed M; Racz, Ildiko; Rathkolb, Birgit; Riet, Fabrice; Rossant, Janet; Roux, Michel; Rozman, Jan; Ryder, Ed; Salisbury, Jennifer; Santos, Luis; Schäble, Karl-Heinz; Schiller, Evelyn; Schrewe, Anja; Schulz, Holger; Steinkamp, Ralf; Simon, Michelle; Stewart, Michelle; Stöger, Claudia; Stöger, Tobias; Sun, Minxuan; Sunter, David; Teboul, Lydia; Tilly, Isabelle; Tocchini-Valentini, Glauco P; Tost, Monica; Treise, Irina; Vasseur, Laurent; Velot, Emilie; Vogt-Weisenhorn, Daniela; Wagner, Christelle; Walling, Alison; Weber, Bruno; Wendling, Olivia; Westerberg, Henrik; Willershäuser, Monja; Wolf, Eckhard; Wolter, Anne; Wood, Joe; Wurst, Wolfgang; Yildirim, Ali Önder; Zeh, Ramona; Zimmer, Andreas; Zimprich, Annemarie

    2015-01-01

    The function of the majority of genes in the mouse and human genomes remains unknown. The mouse ES cell knockout resource provides a basis for characterisation of relationships between gene and phenotype. The EUMODIC consortium developed and validated robust methodologies for broad-based phenotyping of knockouts through a pipeline comprising 20 disease-orientated platforms. We developed novel statistical methods for pipeline design and data analysis aimed at detecting reproducible phenotypes with high power. We acquired phenotype data from 449 mutant alleles, representing 320 unique genes, of which half had no prior functional annotation. We captured data from over 27,000 mice finding that 83% of the mutant lines are phenodeviant, with 65% demonstrating pleiotropy. Surprisingly, we found significant differences in phenotype annotation according to zygosity. Novel phenotypes were uncovered for many genes with unknown function providing a powerful basis for hypothesis generation and further investigation in diverse systems. PMID:26214591

  11. Obsessive-compulsive disorder, which genes? Which functions? Which pathways? An integrated holistic view regarding OCD and its complex genetic etiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bozorgmehr, Ali; Ghadirivasfi, Mohammad; Shahsavand Ananloo, Esmaeil

    2017-09-01

    Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is characterized by recurrent obtrusive and repetitive acts typically occurred following anxiety. In the last two decades, studies done on the gene sequences, large-scale and point mutations and gene-gene, gene-environment and gene-drug interactions have led to the discovery of hundreds of genes associated with OCD. Although each gene in turn is a part of the etiology of this disorder; however, OCD, like other mental disorders is complex and a comprehensive and integrated view is necessary to understand its genetic basis. In this study, through an extensive review of existing published studies, all genes associated with OCD were found. Then, in order to integrate the results, all the interactions between these genes were explored and the achievement was represented as an interactive genetic network. Furthermore, the reconstructed network was analyzed. It was found that GRIN2A, GRIN2B and GRIA2 are the most central nodes in the network. Functional and pathway enrichment analysis showed that glutamate-related pathways are the main deficient systems in patients with OCD. By studying genes shared between OCD and other diseases, it was cleared that OCD, epilepsy and some types of cancer have the most number of shared genes. The results of this study, in addition to reviewing the available results as a comprehensive and integrated manner, provide new hypotheses for future studies.

  12. Amiloride-enhanced gene transfection of octa-arginine functionalized calcium phosphate nanoparticles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tenkumo, Taichi; Kamano, Yuya; Egusa, Hiroshi; Sasaki, Keiichi

    2017-01-01

    Nanoparticles represent promising gene delivery systems in biomedicine to facilitate prolonged gene expression with low toxicity compared to viral vectors. Specifically, nanoparticles of calcium phosphate (nCaP), the main inorganic component of human bone, exhibit high biocompatibility and good biodegradability and have been reported to have high affinity for protein or DNA, having thus been used as gene transfer vectors. On the other hand, Octa-arginine (R8), which has a high permeability to cell membrane, has been reported to improve intracellular delivery systems. Here, we present an optimized method for nCaP-mediated gene delivery using an octa-arginine (R8)-functionalized nCaP vector containing a marker or functional gene construct. nCaP particle size was between 220–580 nm in diameter and all R8-functionalized nCaPs carried a positive charge. R8 concentration significantly improved nCaP transfection efficiency with high cell compatibility in human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSC) and human osteoblasts (hOB) in particular, suggesting nCaPs as a good option for non-viral vector gene delivery. Furthermore, pre-treatment with different endocytosis inhibitors identified that the endocytic pathway differed among cell lines and functionalized nanoparticles, with amiloride increasing transfection efficiency of R8-functionalized nCaPs in hMSC and hOB. PMID:29145481

  13. Molecular studies on the function of tumor suppressor gene in gastrointestinal cancer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, You Cheoul

    1993-01-01

    Cancer of stomach, colon and liver are a group of the most common cancer in Korea. However, results with current therapeutic modalities are still unsatisfactory. The intensive efforts have been made to understand basic pathogenesis and to find better therapeutic tools for the treatment of this miserable disease. We studies the alteration of tumor suppressor gene in various Gastrointestinal cancer in Korea. Results showed that genetic alteration of Rb gene was in 83% of colorectal cancer. Our results suggest that genetic alteration of Rb gene is crucially involved in the tumorigenesis of colorectum in Korea. (Author)

  14. From Flavr Savr Tomatoes to STEM Cell Therapy: Young People's Understandings of Gene Technology, 15 Years On

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Jenny

    2014-01-01

    This paper explores knowledge and understanding of basic genetics and gene technologies in school students who have been taught to a "science for all" National Curriculum and compares 482 students in 1995 (gene technology was a new and rapidly developing area of science with potential to impact on everyday life; the first cohort of…

  15. Phenotype Analysis Method for Identification of Gene Functions Involved in Asymmetric Division of Caenorhabditis elegans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Sihai; Han, Xianhua; Tohsato, Yukako; Kyoda, Koji; Onami, Shuichi; Nishikawa, Ikuko; Chen, Yenwei

    2017-05-01

    In gene function analysis, it is arduous to identify gene function individually, and the way to screen out all involved genes according to a particular phenotype or disease usually shows us little information for a specific problem. We present a data-driven analysis system based on wild type (WT) embryos to study the concrete function of each gene associated with certain category of abnormal phenotypes. It can be applied to genes with very few RNAi embryos. Instead of presupposing the particular function of a gene, its function is confirmed by the statistical testing of built models. The scheme includes the following five: first, verify the to be detected genes and determine related recognized features according to the given category; second, compute the value of each feature based on WT embryos and merge them by principal component analysis (PCA); third, for each of the selected components of PCA, build a normal distribution and verify its normality; fourth, project the RNAi embryos to each component and probe them; and finally, analyze the more detailed functions of each gene based on the physical or biological meaning of each component. Choosing the first-round asymmetric division process of Caenorhabditis elegans as the phenotype, experimental results show that on the different aspects of the asymmetric division process, par-2, par-3, and let-754 are related to scalar differences; dcn-1 and mcm-5 are associated with the divergences of scalar variation, which may reflect the disaccord in development; and dcn-1, par-2, and par-3 are involved with morphological discrepancies.

  16. Fine-scale genetic mapping of a hybrid sterility factor between Drosophila simulans and D. mauritiana: the varied and elusive functions of "speciation genes"

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lemos Bernardo

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Hybrid male sterility (HMS is a usual outcome of hybridization between closely related animal species. It arises because interactions between alleles that are functional within one species may be disrupted in hybrids. The identification of genes leading to hybrid sterility is of great interest for understanding the evolutionary process of speciation. In the current work we used marked P-element insertions as dominant markers to efficiently locate one genetic factor causing a severe reduction in fertility in hybrid males of Drosophila simulans and D. mauritiana. Results Our mapping effort identified a region of 9 kb on chromosome 3, containing three complete and one partial coding sequences. Within this region, two annotated genes are suggested as candidates for the HMS factor, based on the comparative molecular characterization and public-source information. Gene Taf1 is partially contained in the region, but yet shows high polymorphism with four fixed non-synonymous substitutions between the two species. Its molecular functions involve sequence-specific DNA binding and transcription factor activity. Gene agt is a small, intronless gene, whose molecular function is annotated as methylated-DNA-protein-cysteine S-methyltransferase activity. High polymorphism and one fixed non-synonymous substitution suggest this is a fast evolving gene. The gene trees of both genes perfectly separate D. simulans and D. mauritiana into monophyletic groups. Analysis of gene expression using microarray revealed trends that were similar to those previously found in comparisons between whole-genome hybrids and parental species. Conclusions The identification following confirmation of the HMS candidate gene will add another case study leading to understanding the evolutionary process of hybrid incompatibility.

  17. Fine-scale genetic mapping of a hybrid sterility factor between Drosophila simulans and D. mauritiana: the varied and elusive functions of "speciation genes".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araripe, Luciana O; Montenegro, Horácio; Lemos, Bernardo; Hartl, Daniel L

    2010-12-14

    Hybrid male sterility (HMS) is a usual outcome of hybridization between closely related animal species. It arises because interactions between alleles that are functional within one species may be disrupted in hybrids. The identification of genes leading to hybrid sterility is of great interest for understanding the evolutionary process of speciation. In the current work we used marked P-element insertions as dominant markers to efficiently locate one genetic factor causing a severe reduction in fertility in hybrid males of Drosophila simulans and D. mauritiana. Our mapping effort identified a region of 9 kb on chromosome 3, containing three complete and one partial coding sequences. Within this region, two annotated genes are suggested as candidates for the HMS factor, based on the comparative molecular characterization and public-source information. Gene Taf1 is partially contained in the region, but yet shows high polymorphism with four fixed non-synonymous substitutions between the two species. Its molecular functions involve sequence-specific DNA binding and transcription factor activity. Gene agt is a small, intronless gene, whose molecular function is annotated as methylated-DNA-protein-cysteine S-methyltransferase activity. High polymorphism and one fixed non-synonymous substitution suggest this is a fast evolving gene. The gene trees of both genes perfectly separate D. simulans and D. mauritiana into monophyletic groups. Analysis of gene expression using microarray revealed trends that were similar to those previously found in comparisons between whole-genome hybrids and parental species. The identification following confirmation of the HMS candidate gene will add another case study leading to understanding the evolutionary process of hybrid incompatibility.

  18. A Functional Genomics Approach to Understanding and Evaluating Health in Navy Dolphins

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Romano, Tracy

    2004-01-01

    ... to chemical, biological and physical stress. To this end we have initialized development of a dolphin gene microarray in order to evaluate its utility as a transcriptomic biosensor in the health assessment of dolphins...

  19. Understanding the Structure-Function Relationships of Dendrimers in Environmental and Biomedical Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Bo

    We are living an era wherein nanoparticles (NPs) have been widely applied in our lives. Dendrimers are special polymeric NPs with unique physiochemical properties, which have been intensely explored for a variety of applications. Current studies on dendrimers are bottlenecked by insufficient understandings of their structure and dynamic behaviors from a molecular level. With primarily computational approaches supplemented by many other experimental technics, this dissertation aims to establish structure-function relationships of dendrimers in environmental and biomedical applications. More specifically, it thoroughly investigates the interactions between dendrimers and different biomolecules including carbon-based NPs, metal-based NPs, and proteins/peptides. Those results not only provide profound knowledge for evaluating the impacts of dendrimers on environmental and biological systems but also facilitate designing next-generation functional polymeric nanomaterials. The dissertation is organized as following. Chapter 1 provides an overview of current progresses on dendrimer studies, where methodology of Discrete Molecular Dynamics (DMD), my major research tool, is also introduced. Two directions of utilizing dendrimers will be discussed in following chapters. Chapter 2 will focus on environmental applications of dendrimers, where two back-to-back studies are presented. I will start from describing some interesting observations from experiments i.e. dendrimers dispersed model oil molecules. Then, I will reveal why surface chemistries of dendrimers lead to different remediation efficiencies by computational modelings. Finally, I will demonstrate different scenarios of dendrimer-small molecules association. Chapter 3 is centered on dendrimers in the biomedical applications including two subtopics. In the first topic, we will discuss dendrimers as surfactants that modulating the interactions between proteins and NPs. Some fundamental concepts regarding to NPs

  20. Paternal Aging Affects Behavior in Pax6 Mutant Mice: A Gene/Environment Interaction in Understanding Neurodevelopmental Disorders.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaichi Yoshizaki

    Full Text Available Neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD and attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD have increased over the last few decades. These neurodevelopmental disorders are characterized by a complex etiology, which involves multiple genes and gene-environmental interactions. Various genes that control specific properties of neural development exert pivotal roles in the occurrence and severity of phenotypes associated with neurodevelopmental disorders. Moreover, paternal aging has been reported as one of the factors that contribute to the risk of ASD and ADHD. Here we report, for the first time, that paternal aging has profound effects on the onset of behavioral abnormalities in mice carrying a mutation of Pax6, a gene with neurodevelopmental regulatory functions. We adopted an in vitro fertilization approach to restrict the influence of additional factors. Comprehensive behavioral analyses were performed in Sey/+ mice (i.e., Pax6 mutant heterozygotes born from in vitro fertilization of sperm taken from young or aged Sey/+ fathers. No body weight changes were found in the four groups, i.e., Sey/+ and wild type (WT mice born to young or aged father. However, we found important differences in maternal separation-induced ultrasonic vocalizations of Sey/+ mice born from young father and in the level of hyperactivity of Sey/+ mice born from aged fathers in the open-field test, respectively, compared to WT littermates. Phenotypes of anxiety were observed in both genotypes born from aged fathers compared with those born from young fathers. No significant difference was found in social behavior and sensorimotor gating among the four groups. These results indicate that mice with a single genetic risk factor can develop different phenotypes depending on the paternal age. Our study advocates for serious considerations on the role of paternal aging in breeding strategies for animal studies.

  1. Blood and Bones: The Influence of the Mass Media on Australian Primary School Children's Understandings of Genes and DNA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donovan, Jenny; Venville, Grady

    2012-06-01

    Previous research showed that primary school children held several misconceptions about genetics of concern for their future lives. Included were beliefs that genes and DNA are separate substances, with genes causing family resemblance and DNA identifying suspects at crime scenes. Responses to this work `blamed' the mass media for these misunderstandings. This study aimed to determine whether that blame had any foundation by examining the media habits and conceptions about genes and DNA of Australian children. With little prior research considering the influence of entertainment mass media on children's academically relevant knowledge, this was an exploratory study with a mixed modes design. Data were collected by detailed media questionnaires and face-to-face interviews with 62 children aged 10-12 years, and subjected to content and thematic analysis. Specific mass media examples children reported using were examined for genetics content. Results indicate 5 h/day of media use, mostly television including crime shows, and that children perceived television to be their main source of information about genetics. Most children (89 %) knew DNA, 60 % knew genes, and more was known about uses of DNA outside the body such as crime solving or resolving family relationships than about its biological nature and function. Half believed DNA is only in blood and body parts used for forensics. These concepts paralleled the themes emerging from the media examples. The results indicate that the mass media is a pervasive teacher of children, and that fundamental concepts could be introduced earlier in schools to establish scientific concepts before misconceptions arise.

  2. Predictive Understanding of Mountainous Watershed Hydro-Biogeochemical Function and Response to Perturbations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hubbard, S. S.; Williams, K. H.; Agarwal, D.; Banfield, J. F.; Beller, H. R.; Bouskill, N.; Brodie, E.; Maxwell, R. M.; Nico, P. S.; Steefel, C. I.; Steltzer, H.; Tokunaga, T. K.; Wainwright, H. M.; Dwivedi, D.; Newcomer, M. E.

    2017-12-01

    Recognizing the societal importance, vulnerability and complexity of mountainous watersheds, the `Watershed Function' project is developing a predictive understanding of how mountainous watersheds retain and release downgradient water, nutrients, carbon, and metals. In particular, the project is exploring how early snowmelt, drought, floods and other disturbances will influence mountainous watershed dynamics at seasonal to decadal timescales. Located in the 300km2 East River headwater catchment of the Upper Colorado River Basin, the project is guided by several constructs. First, the project considers the integrated role of surface and subsurface flow and biogeochemical reactions - from bedrock to the top of the vegetative canopy, from terrestrial through aquatic compartments, and from summit to receiving waters. The project takes a system-of-systems perspective, focused on developing new methods to quantify the cumulative watershed hydrobiogeochemical response to perturbations based on information from select subsystems within the watershed, each having distinct vegetation-subsurface biogeochemical-hydrological characteristics. A `scale-adaptive' modeling capability, in development using adaptive mesh refinement methods, serves as the organizing framework for the SFA. The scale-adaptive approach is intended to permit simulation of system-within-systems behavior - and aggregation of that behavior - from genome through watershed scales. This presentation will describe several early project discoveries and advances made using experimental, observational and numerical approaches. Among others, examples may include:quantiying how seasonal hydrological perturbations drive biogeochemical responses across critical zone compartments, with a focus on N and C transformations; metagenomic documentation of the spatial variability in floodplain meander microbial ecology; 3D reactive transport simulations of couped hydrological-biogeochemical behavior in the hyporheic zone; and

  3. Building an Understanding of Functions: A Series of Activities for Pre-Calculus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carducci, Olivia M.

    2008-01-01

    Building block toys can be used to illustrate various concepts connected with functions including graphs and rates of change of linear and exponential functions, piecewise functions, and composition of functions. Five brief activities suitable for a pre-calculus course are described.

  4. Heterologous expression and transcript analysis of gibberellin biosynthetic genes of grasses reveals novel functionality in the GA3ox family.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearce, Stephen; Huttly, Alison K; Prosser, Ian M; Li, Yi-dan; Vaughan, Simon P; Gallova, Barbora; Patil, Archana; Coghill, Jane A; Dubcovsky, Jorge; Hedden, Peter; Phillips, Andrew L

    2015-06-05

    The gibberellin (GA) pathway plays a central role in the regulation of plant development, with the 2-oxoglutarate-dependent dioxygenases (2-ODDs: GA20ox, GA3ox, GA2ox) that catalyse the later steps in the biosynthetic pathway of particularly importance in regulating bioactive GA levels. Although GA has important impacts on crop yield and quality, our understanding of the regulation of GA biosynthesis during wheat and barley development remains limited. In this study we identified or assembled genes encoding the GA 2-ODDs of wheat, barley and Brachypodium distachyon and characterised the wheat genes by heterologous expression and transcript analysis. The wheat, barley and Brachypodium genomes each contain orthologous copies of the GA20ox, GA3ox and GA2ox genes identified in rice, with the exception of OsGA3ox1 and OsGA2ox5 which are absent in these species. Some additional paralogs of 2-ODD genes were identified: notably, a novel gene in the wheat B genome related to GA3ox2 was shown to encode a GA 1-oxidase, named as TaGA1ox-B1. This enzyme is likely to be responsible for the abundant 1β-hydroxylated GAs present in developing wheat grains. We also identified a related gene in barley, located in a syntenic position to TaGA1ox-B1, that encodes a GA 3,18-dihydroxylase which similarly accounts for the accumulation of unusual GAs in barley grains. Transcript analysis showed that some paralogs of the different classes of 2-ODD were expressed mainly in a single tissue or at specific developmental stages. In particular, TaGA20ox3, TaGA1ox1, TaGA3ox3 and TaGA2ox7 were predominantly expressed in developing grain. More detailed analysis of grain-specific gene expression showed that while the transcripts of biosynthetic genes were most abundant in the endosperm, genes encoding inactivation and signalling components were more highly expressed in the seed coat and pericarp. The comprehensive expression and functional characterisation of the multigene families encoding the 2-ODD

  5. HuMiChip: Development of a Functional Gene Array for the Study of Human Microbiomes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tu, Q.; Deng, Ye; Lin, Lu; Hemme, Chris L.; He, Zhili; Zhou, Jizhong

    2010-05-17

    Microbiomes play very important roles in terms of nutrition, health and disease by interacting with their hosts. Based on sequence data currently available in public domains, we have developed a functional gene array to monitor both organismal and functional gene profiles of normal microbiota in human and mouse hosts, and such an array is called human and mouse microbiota array, HMM-Chip. First, seed sequences were identified from KEGG databases, and used to construct a seed database (seedDB) containing 136 gene families in 19 metabolic pathways closely related to human and mouse microbiomes. Second, a mother database (motherDB) was constructed with 81 genomes of bacterial strains with 54 from gut and 27 from oral environments, and 16 metagenomes, and used for selection of genes and probe design. Gene prediction was performed by Glimmer3 for bacterial genomes, and by the Metagene program for metagenomes. In total, 228,240 and 801,599 genes were identified for bacterial genomes and metagenomes, respectively. Then the motherDB was searched against the seedDB using the HMMer program, and gene sequences in the motherDB that were highly homologous with seed sequences in the seedDB were used for probe design by the CommOligo software. Different degrees of specific probes, including gene-specific, inclusive and exclusive group-specific probes were selected. All candidate probes were checked against the motherDB and NCBI databases for specificity. Finally, 7,763 probes covering 91.2percent (12,601 out of 13,814) HMMer confirmed sequences from 75 bacterial genomes and 16 metagenomes were selected. This developed HMM-Chip is able to detect the diversity and abundance of functional genes, the gene expression of microbial communities, and potentially, the interactions of microorganisms and their hosts.

  6. Rough-fuzzy clustering for grouping functionally similar genes from microarray data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maji, Pradipta; Paul, Sushmita

    2013-01-01

    Gene expression data clustering is one of the important tasks of functional genomics as it provides a powerful tool for studying functional relationships of genes in a biological process. Identifying coexpressed groups of genes represents the basic challenge in gene clustering problem. In this regard, a gene clustering algorithm, termed as robust rough-fuzzy c-means, is proposed judiciously integrating the merits of rough sets and fuzzy sets. While the concept of lower and upper approximations of rough sets deals with uncertainty, vagueness, and incompleteness in cluster definition, the integration of probabilistic and possibilistic memberships of fuzzy sets enables efficient handling of overlapping partitions in noisy environment. The concept of possibilistic lower bound and probabilistic boundary of a cluster, introduced in robust rough-fuzzy c-means, enables efficient selection of gene clusters. An efficient method is proposed to select initial prototypes of different gene clusters, which enables the proposed c-means algorithm to converge to an optimum or near optimum solutions and helps to discover coexpressed gene clusters. The effectiveness of the algorithm, along with a comparison with other algorithms, is demonstrated both qualitatively and quantitatively on 14 yeast microarray data sets.

  7. Functional gene polymorphism to reveal species history: the case of the CRTISO gene in cultivated carrots.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanessa Soufflet-Freslon

    Full Text Available Carrot is a vegetable cultivated worldwide for the consumption of its root. Historical data indicate that root colour has been differentially selected over time and according to geographical areas. Root pigmentation depends on the relative proportion of different carotenoids for the white, yellow, orange and red types but only internally for the purple one. The genetic control for root carotenoid content might be partially associated with carotenoid biosynthetic genes. Carotenoid isomerase (CRTISO has emerged as a regulatory step in the carotenoid biosynthesis pathway and could be a good candidate to show how a metabolic pathway gene reflects a species genetic history.In this study, the nucleotide polymorphism and the linkage disequilibrium among the complete CRTISO sequence, and the deviation from neutral expectation were analysed by considering population subdivision revealed with 17 microsatellite markers. A sample of 39 accessions, which represented different geographical origins and root colours, was used. Cultivated carrot was divided into two genetic groups: one from Middle East and Asia (Eastern group, and another one mainly from Europe (Western group. The Western and Eastern genetic groups were suggested to be differentially affected by selection: a signature of balancing selection was detected within the first group whereas the second one showed no selection. A focus on orange-rooted carrots revealed that cultivars cultivated in Asia were mainly assigned to the Western group but showed CRTISO haplotypes common to Eastern carrots.The carotenoid pathway CRTISO gene data proved to be complementary to neutral markers in order to bring critical insight in the cultivated carrot history. We confirmed the occurrence of two migration events since domestication. Our results showed a European background in material from Japan and Central Asia. While confirming the introduction of European carrots in Japanese resources, the history of Central Asia

  8. Genes conserved in bilaterians but jointly lost with Myc during nematode evolution are enriched in cell proliferation and cell migration functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erives, Albert J

    2015-09-01

    Animals use a stereotypical set of developmental genes to build body architectures of varying sizes and organizational complexity. Some genes are critical to developmental patterning, while other genes are important to physiological control of growth. However, growth regulator genes may not be as important in small-bodied "micro-metazoans" such as nematodes. Nematodes use a simplified developmental strategy of lineage-based cell fate specifications to produce an adult bilaterian body composed of a few hundreds of cells. Nematodes also lost the MYC proto-oncogenic regulator of cell proliferation. To identify additional regulators of cell proliferation that were lost with MYC, we computationally screened and determined 839 high-confidence genes that are conserved in bilaterians/lost in nematodes (CIBLIN genes). We find that 30 % of all CIBLIN genes encode transcriptional regulators of cell proliferation, epithelial-to-mesenchyme transitions, and other processes. Over 50 % of CIBLIN genes are unnamed genes in Drosophila, suggesting that there are many understudied genes. Interestingly, CIBLIN genes include many Myc synthetic lethal (MycSL) hits from recent screens. CIBLIN genes include key regulators of heparan sulfate proteoglycan (HSPG) sulfation patterns, and lysyl oxidases involved in cross-linking and modification of the extracellular matrix (ECM). These genes and others suggest the CIBLIN repertoire services critical functions in ECM remodeling and cell migration in large-bodied bilaterians. Correspondingly, CIBLIN genes are co-expressed with Myc in cancer transcriptomes, and include a preponderance of known determinants of cancer progression and tumor aggression. We propose that CIBLIN gene research can improve our understanding of regulatory control of cellular growth in metazoans.

  9. Host-induced gene silencing: a tool for understanding fungal host interaction and for developing novel disease control strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nunes, Cristiano C; Dean, Ralph A

    2012-06-01

    Recent discoveries regarding small RNAs and the mechanisms of gene silencing are providing new opportunities to explore fungal pathogen-host interactions and potential strategies for novel disease control. Plant pathogenic fungi are a constant and major threat to global food security; they represent the largest group of disease-causing agents on crop plants on the planet. An initial understanding of RNA silencing mechanisms and small RNAs was derived from model fungi. Now, new knowledge with practical implications for RNA silencing is beginning to emerge from the study of plant-fungus interactions. Recent studies have shown that the expression of silencing constructs in plants designed on fungal genes can specifically silence their targets in invading pathogenic fungi, such as Fusarium verticillioides, Blumeria graminis and Puccinia striiformis f.sp. tritici. Here, we highlight the important general aspects of RNA silencing mechanisms and emphasize recent findings from plant pathogenic fungi. Strategies to employ RNA silencing to investigate the basis of fungal pathogenesis are discussed. Finally, we address important aspects for the development of fungal-derived resistance through the expression of silencing constructs in host plants as a powerful strategy to control fungal disease. © 2011 The Authors. Molecular Plant Pathology © 2011 BSPP and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  10. Horizontal Gene Transfer of Functional Type VI Killing Genes by Natural Transformation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacob Thomas

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Horizontal gene transfer (HGT can have profound effects on bacterial evolution by allowing individuals to rapidly acquire adaptive traits that shape their strategies for competition. One strategy for intermicrobial antagonism often used by Proteobacteria is the genetically encoded contact-dependent type VI secretion system (T6SS, a weapon used to kill heteroclonal neighbors by direct injection of toxic effectors. Here, we experimentally demonstrate that Vibrio cholerae can acquire new T6SS effector genes via horizontal transfer and utilize them to kill neighboring cells. Replacement of one or more parental alleles with novel effectors allows the recombinant strain to dramatically outcompete its parent. Using spatially explicit modeling, we examine how this process could affect the ecology and evolution of surface-attached microbial populations. HGT of T6SS effector-immunity pairs is risky: transformation brings a cell into conflict with its former clone mates but can be adaptive when superior T6SS alleles are acquired. More generally, we find that these costs and benefits are not symmetric and that high rates of HGT can act as a hedge against competitors with unpredictable T6SS efficacy. We conclude that antagonism and horizontal transfer drive successive rounds of weapon optimization and selective sweeps, dynamically shaping the composition of microbial communities.

  11. A highly conserved gene island of three genes on chromosome 3B of hexaploid wheat: diverse gene function and genomic structure maintained in a tightly linked block

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ma Wujun

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The complexity of the wheat genome has resulted from waves of retrotransposable element insertions. Gene deletions and disruptions generated by the fast replacement of repetitive elements in wheat have resulted in disruption of colinearity at a micro (sub-megabase level among the cereals. In view of genomic changes that are possible within a given time span, conservation of genes between species tends to imply an important functional or regional constraint that does not permit a change in genomic structure. The ctg1034 contig completed in this paper was initially studied because it was assigned to the Sr2 resistance locus region, but detailed mapping studies subsequently assigned it to the long arm of 3B and revealed its unusual features. Results BAC shotgun sequencing of the hexaploid wheat (Triticum aestivum cv. Chinese Spring genome has been used to assemble a group of 15 wheat BACs from the chromosome 3B physical map FPC contig ctg1034 into a 783,553 bp genomic sequence. This ctg1034 sequence was annotated for biological features such as genes and transposable elements. A three-gene island was identified among >80% repetitive DNA sequence. Using bioinformatics analysis there were no observable similarity in their gene functions. The ctg1034 gene island also displayed complete conservation of gene order and orientation with syntenic gene islands found in publicly available genome sequences of Brachypodium distachyon, Oryza sativa, Sorghum bicolor and Zea mays, even though the intergenic space and introns were divergent. Conclusion We propose that ctg1034 is located within the heterochromatic C-band region of deletion bin 3BL7 based on the identification of heterochromatic tandem repeats and presence of significant matches to chromodomain-containing gypsy LTR retrotransposable elements. We also speculate that this location, among other highly repetitive sequences, may account for the relative stability in gene order and

  12. Array2BIO: from microarray expression data to functional annotation of co-regulated genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rasley Amy

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background There are several isolated tools for partial analysis of microarray expression data. To provide an integrative, easy-to-use and automated toolkit for the analysis of Affymetrix microarray expression data we have developed Array2BIO, an application that couples several analytical methods into a single web based utility. Results Array2BIO converts raw intensities into probe expression values, automatically maps those to genes, and subsequently identifies groups of co-expressed genes using two complementary approaches: (1 comparative analysis of signal versus control and (2 clustering analysis of gene expression across different conditions. The identified genes are assigned to functional categories based on Gene Ontology classification and KEGG protein interaction pathways. Array2BIO reliably handles low-expressor genes and provides a set of statistical methods for quantifying expression levels, including Benjamini-Hochberg and Bonferroni multiple testing corrections. An automated interface with the ECR Browser provides evolutionary conservation analysis for the identified gene loci while the interconnection with Crème allows prediction of gene regulatory elements that underlie observed expression patterns. Conclusion We have developed Array2BIO – a web based tool for rapid comprehensive analysis of Affymetrix microarray expression data, which also allows users to link expression data to Dcode.org comparative genomics tools and integrates a system for translating co-expression data into mechanisms of gene co-regulation. Array2BIO is publicly available at http://array2bio.dcode.org.

  13. Endosymbiont gene functions impaired and rescued by polymerase infidelity at poly(A) tracts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamas, Ivica; Wernegreen, Jennifer J.; Nystedt, Björn; Kauppinen, Seth N.; Darby, Alistair C.; Gomez-Valero, Laura; Lundin, Daniel; Poole, Anthony M.; Andersson, Siv G. E.

    2008-01-01

    Among host-dependent bacteria that have evolved by extreme reductive genome evolution, long-term bacterial endosymbionts of insects have the smallest (160–790 kb) and most A + T-rich (>70%) bacterial genomes known to date. These genomes are riddled with poly(A) tracts, and 5–50% of genes contain tracts of 10 As or more. Here, we demonstrate transcriptional slippage at poly(A) tracts within genes of Buchnera aphidicola associated with aphids and Blochmannia pennsylvanicus associated with ants. Several tracts contain single frameshift deletions; these apparent pseudogenes showed patterns of constraint consistent with purifying selection on the encoded proteins. Transcriptional slippage yielded a heterogeneous population of transcripts with variable numbers of As in the tract. Across several frameshifted genes, including B. aphidicola cell wall biosynthesis genes and a B. pennsylvanicus histidine biosynthesis gene, 12–50% of transcripts contained corrected reading frames that could potentially yield full-length proteins. In situ immunostaining confirmed the production of the cell wall biosynthetic enzyme UDP-N-acetylmuramyl pentapeptide synthase encoded by the frameshifted murF gene. Simulation studies indicated an overrepresentation of poly(A) tracts in endosymbiont genomes relative to other A + T-rich bacterial genomes. Polymerase infidelity at poly(A) tracts rescues the functionality of genes with frameshift mutations and, conversel